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Peter Murray

view-looking-to-the-apollo-recess-and-dome-area-from-the-sepulchral-chamber-photo_-gareth-gardnerIf you haven’t visited the Sir John Soane’s Museum for a while, you’re in for a surprise (reports Andrew Humphreys). It’s more beguiling and madcap than ever. Just last month, a seven-year, £7m programme of restoration concluded that has returned the unique Georgian house-cum-museum to the original design of neoclassical architect and collector Sir John Soane.

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Peter Murray

 

hawks-booksAs a member of the London Society, chances are your home contains a well-curated shelf of London books. You might even run to a bookcase full. Still, we’re betting you’ve got a way to go to equal Hawk Norton. Norton, who used to work in the printing business, reckons he has approximately 5,000 books relating to the UK capital, constituting what must be the largest private collection on the subject. They are housed in his Brentford home, shelved from floor to ceiling, with stacked boxes struggling to contain the overflow. It started around 40 years ago with a single book, a present from his mother: now the collection includes everything from the first published survey of London, compiled by John Stow in 1598, to Peter Murray’s 2016 Streets Ahead: The Future of London’s Roads, as well as antique prints and maps. Even as he is still adding new titles, Norton reluctantly decided to reclaim some of his living space and began selling off his books. He has just issued his latest catalogue, which runs to 129 pages of small type. With the books listed under categories including ‘Lost London’, ‘Under London’ and ‘London’s Dead’ it makes fantastic reading in itself. Send an email to hawk@btinternet.com to request a pdf copy and prepare to spend.

 

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Peter Murray
Andrew Humphreys visits the Edward Ardizzone exhibition at the House of Illustration in Granary Square, King’s Cross.
image-from-little-tim-and-the-brave-sea-captain-estate-of-edward-ardizzone
In recent times, a bunch of artists from the mid 20th century who embody a kind of bucolic Englishness that has traditionally caused cosmopolitan critics to squirm uncomfortably, have been welcomed back into the fold. A mini publishing industry currently exists around the likes of Edward Bawden and Eric Ravilious. Now it’s the turn of Edward Ardizzone, thanks to a just opened show at London’s House of Illustration.
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