By Mark Easton
Mark Easton's Britain and so forth. seems to be on the united kingdom via its courting to 26 matters - one for every letter of the alphabet. From Alcohol, Beat Bobbies, Cheese and canines via Immigration, Justice, Knives and homicide to the Queen, Umbrellas, greens and the Zzzz of a genuinely-earned leisure, the book's meticulously researched yet available essays map the back-story of latest Britain. With each one lettered bankruptcy, the reader is invited to examine the uk in a brand new approach: status again to work out our small islands in a world or old context, after which diving all the way down to scrutinise very important info that could be missed. Taken jointly, the essays display a Britain that can't be visible during the prism of day-by-day information or present affairs. A park, a marriage, a beggar and a carrot all tackle new value upon getting learn Britain and so on. because the united kingdom welcomes hundreds of thousands of holiday makers to its beaches for the Olympics and the Diamond Jubilee celebrations, this can be a publication that gives perception into the psyche of england; a nation's obsessions, prejudices, values and idiosyncrasies. what kind of position is it, what are the natives like, and the way did we get to the place we're?
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And reality meant getting your hands dirty and your feet wet. ’ The affluent middle classes entered the new millennium demanding real ale, slow food, organic turnips and unbranded vintage fashion. They went to Glastonbury to dance in primeval mud, stopping off at the deli on the way home for a sourdough loaf, a bag of Egremont Russets and a chunk of dairy heritage. Urban chic sported clods of rural earth as farmers’ markets and organic boxes headed to town. Localism became the mantra of politicians, bankers and grocers.
The Game Act was justified as a measure to prevent poaching, but it was really about power and class. The aristocracy wanted to stop new money upsetting the old order and, by including petty rules about dog ownership, hoped to ensure the aspirational industrialists could only aspire so far. It didn’t last, of course. Money spoke. Rich cotton barons and ironmasters began buying up the estates and pumped millions into packs of foxhounds and gun dogs, determined to confer the ancient social status of hunting upon themselves.
It also played to the prejudices of a country which had long assumed that ancestry begat status, that blood dictated class. As people moved from the countryside into rapidly expanding cities, so did dogs. The mysterious science of breeding travelled into town too, stolen rural magic to be peddled on urban streets. Queen Victoria’s private vet, Charles Rotherham, told a parliamentary committee that the canine population had soared between 1865 and 1887 as the middle classes purchased pure-bred animals as domestic companions.