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I hope you will recognize why I have adopted the description I was given by an American newspaper: an optimistic realist. Through many years and in many lands I have met men and women who have taken on to use their lives to set right wrongs they encountered starting with themselves. It has been my privilege to tell their stories. You may be encouraged by their experiences and pick up ideas and approaches which you can make use of. You might perhaps even like to buy some books! Let me recommend the FORGIVENESS pages which contain stories related to this subject and its effect in the world. At Reaching out to the other you will find the introduction which I wrote for a French book which refers to what happened in our family that set us off on this journey. The evidence shows that forgiveness is not just a religious or personal matter but a vital ingredient in sound national and international life.
This is a book about someone I worked with 60 years ago. I had little idea then of her daring activities during World War I. She is Angy Hore-Ruthven, formerly Manners, wife of Col Malise Hore-Ruthven and mother of Nancy, Sally and James. This 25-year-old society lady raised a 'hospital' - matron, surgeon and nurses and equipment - and took it to Belgium. With the focus on World War I, I offered to help Sally get her mother’s story reported. We soon realized that it couldn’t be easily captured in a magazine or newspaper article. Discovering that Amazon’s Create Space published short books, I decided to write one. Read more >>
I am not by nature a great fan of what I believe is called Installation art. But the dramatic and sensitive field of poppies in the Tower of London moat opened my mind to its potential power for good. Millions who came to see the poppies and the millions more who shared the experience through the media coverage worldwide will have been moved. To an extraordinary extent nearly a million handcrafted ceramic images have managed to personalize for us an almost incomprehensible historic event.
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My brother Gerald, 6, and I, 8, were evacuated to the US in World War II. Like several thousand other British boys and girls we were looked after by American families. I wrote See You After the Duration and many articles about those wartime experiences and am still in touch with the family and schools that took us in. I have also participated in the gathering of the oral history of that period. In this site you can read about this memorable but little known aspect of World War II that changed our lives and gave us a great sense of gratitude to the USA. See Evacuation.