More News from London


This week marks the 200th anniversary of the Battle of Waterloo – one of the most decisive battles of European history, involving half a million men, with casualties amounting to about 48,000 – and I just happen to be in Europe at the present time. I had the opportunity of visiting the National Portrait Gallery at Trafalgar Square to see the impressive exhibition of the war. There is to be a re-enactment of the battle, involving several thousand ‘actors’ at the end of this week. Like Lord Nelson, the Duke of Wellington is immortalised across Australia with place names such as our own Wellington Square.

During my short stay in London I tracked down the very new statue of Matthew Flinders at Euston Railway Station. The life-sized statue of Flinders has him kneeling over charts  and a compass with  his beloved cat Trim at his feet. Euston Station is one of the busiest in  London and unfortunately  the plinth serves as a seat for waiting passengers – which I think is somewhat disrespectful nonetheless. Some English friends I stayed with had never heard of him. I had often wondered what was the connection with Euston Railway Station,  and later learned that Flinders was buried in a church graveyard which has since been demolished and over which was built the  railway station. I guess you can’t stand in the way of progress.

After  Evensong at Westminster Abbey, I found the plaque in Poets’ Corner for Adam Lindsay Gordon (Mounted Constable with the SA Police) but better known as our National Poet – and also the plaque for Admiral Arthur Phillip, referred to as ‘The Founder of Modern Australia’.

While on holidays I have kept in touch with happenings at Nyroca and am very grateful to my good friends Geoff and Pip Dunlop for looking after the camp for the duration. Allan Smith organised a weekend at Nyroca for the Ulysses Club members, and Warren and Cath Dickie were in charge of arrangements for the Orienteering Championships held at Mt Dutton – with participants camping at Nyroca over the long weekend.

A couple of months’ ago we had solar panels installed on the roof of the big shed at Nyroca, and so I am anxiously awaiting (with nervous anticipation), the arrival of the next quarterly power bill, to see whether the expense is going to be justified.

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