Still in the dark over Thompson seances

In the dark with David ThompsonLast year, in a report on a David Thompson physical seance, I offered two points of view about his mediumship: negative and positive. That discussion provoked numerous comments, for and against, which can still be viewed on this website. It is clear that people attending seances held under similar situations – total darkness – can come away with opposing opinions about the genuineness of what they experienced.

I’d like to think that with the passage of time Thompson’s mediumship could improve to the point where he can produce impressive evidence of spirit communication on a regular basis and maybe even exhibit convincing phenomena in red light.

Currently, what he is offering is little more than a variety show in which well-known dead celebrities do much of the talking, along with his own spirit helpers. Seldom do sitters get to hear from their loved ones and when they do the content of their messages is not evidential.

That’s a personal view, of course, based on my own experience. Readers of Psychic World (PW), the monthly Spiritualist newspaper, may well take a different view, following publication in its March 2012 edition of three glowing and lengthy accounts of two Thompson seances, held at the Arthur Findlay College (Stansted Hall) in January this year.

Stansted Hall seances
The seances were part of a week-long event, “Where Science and Spiritualism Meet”, organised by the Friends of Stansted Hall (FOSH) to encourage the study and development of physical phenomena. That’s an objective that has my whole-hearted support.

The first account came from Graham Hewitt, assistant general secretary of the Spiritualists’ National Union (SNU), its trust property co-ordinator and also a FOSH trustee, told PW readers that the event was an opportunity “to bring scientists, psychologists and psychiatrists together with medical practitioners and mediums to exchange modern scientific theory with mediumship practice”.

Hewitt added that the conditions under which the seance on 20th January was held enabled the sitters “to set aside any suggestion of fraud during the seances”.

Mediums Gordon Higginson (former SNU president and a regular communicator at Thompson seances) and John Sloan (whose direct voice seances helped convince Arthur Findlay of survival of death) were among those who spoke at the first seance.

Linda Smith, president of Norwich Spiritualist Church, was the next contributor to report on her experiences, at the second Thompson seance, revealing that Higginson communicated again, speaking with Ken Smith, a FOSH trustee, and David Breakell, “his old friend”. Breakell and others who knew Higginson confirmed it was his voice, she wrote.

Pioneer Spiritualist Emma Hardinge Britten and trumpeter Louis Armstrong were among the other communicators.

David Breakell, the third PW contributor, confirmed that the highlight of the evening was “when Gordon Higginson came through and spoke to me”. He adds:

“I have numerous recordings of him. I am familiar with his speaking voice and will swear on a stack of bibles that it was his voice that we heard in the Library of Stansted Hall, the seance room, on Thursday evening, 26th January, 2012.” That’s a really impressive testimony, but I’m afraid it doesn’t carry weight, as I’ll explain a little later. First, I’ll deal with the very different reactions of some of the sitters at Thompson’s seances held in the United States in February.

Los Angeles seances
A few weeks after the Stansted event, Thompson and his partner and organiser Christine Morgan flew to Los Angeles where they held three physical seances. These were hosted at the home of a research medium whose abilities have been recognised and certified by Dr Julie Beischel at the Windbridge Institute for Applied Research in Human Potential. The institute is conducting on-going research into mediumship and evidence for the survival of consciousness after death.

Having heard that Thompson could produce remarkable physical evidence of an after-life, she decided to investigate for herself and extended an invitation to the British-born medium, who is now based in Australia, to demonstrate his powers in the U.S. [He has, incidentally, done so in the past]. She invited friends, a number of whom are also mediums, to attend the seances.

Among those attending was Dr Jan W. Vandersande, author of Life After Death: Some of the Best Evidence. He has written a very full and glowing account of his experiences at these seances on Dave Howard’s “Spirit Communion” Blog. He concludes: “There is no doubt in my mind he produced the materialisations and the other physical phenomena while tied in the chair in the cabinet.”

It’s a very positive report, though it has resulted in a number of comments challenging his conclusions, including one which asks, “Where is the critical thinking?”. More importantly, it does not reflect the views of everyone who attended those seances; some remain open-minded while others have concluded that they did not experience anything paranormal. Some of their comments have been shared with me.

There are claims from one witness, for example, that a green light was seen at times which suggested to the observer that night-vision goggles were being used by the medium to find his way around the darkened seance room when he was supposed to be secured to a chair with plastic ties. Concern was also expressed that the seances appeared to be “rehearsed, predictable and to duplicate each other”.  Here are some of the other comments made after the seances:

“He [Tim, a child who is part of Thompson’s spirit team] didn’t really bring any news to anyone, so I guessed that the ‘thrill’ of him was how fast he moved the trumpet…. Nothing convinced me there were ectoplasm forms in the room.”

“We were very disappointed with the David Thompson seance and feel like he is taking advantage of people. We have been associated with the Spiritualist Church for many years and spend our summers in Lily Dale, NY. We have seen the ‘real deal’ with Richard Schoeller, who does trance and transfiguration where we all saw the ectoplasm form and faces appear…. David is not for real. A few others afterward indicated they felt the same.”

“If it had been real, it would have been well worth it.”

Not everyone was disappointed. One guest emailed: “Thank you for putting on such a wonderful event. Please let me know when David and Chistine will be back in town.”

Is testimony reliable?
Let us compare the negative views expressed by some sitters after the Los Angeles seances with those of Psychic World‘s three contributors, quoted earlier. Two of the UK sitters are Spiritualists of long-standing but their testimonies rely heavily on the apparent precautions taken – which they believe make fraud impossible – not on the evidence provided. The third testimony, in which David Breakell asserted that it was definitely Gordon Higginson’s voice that was heard, would not be accepted in a court of law. Here’s why:

Breakell confirms that the seance was held in total darkness – apart from a short period when a red light was used to show “ectoplasm” extending from Thompson’s mouth to his knees. In such circumstances, sitters must rely on their hearing from the information they receive. Unfortunately, Breakell is deaf, though he overcomes that disability with a hearing aid. But, having been banned from using the device at a physical séance two years earlier at Stansted – with an unnamed medium – he volunteered to leave the hearing aid outside the seance room.

In that way, he could be sure he complied with the strict security conditions imposed by the seance organisers, designed to prevent the unauthorised use of cameras or voice recorders, as well as other devices that might emit light.

In other words, the third glowing account of the seance was written by a witness who could neither see nor hear anything that was taking place. Breakell explains: “Consequently, because of my deafness and the total darkness, I heard and saw very little of what actually took place in the seance room. But I did hear the voice of Gordon Higginson ­– loud and clear.”

How is that possible? Breakell’s testimony is based on his own apparent clairaudience and has nothing to do with Thompson’s mediumship. One wonders why he needed to participate in the Thompson seance when he can receive his own spirit messages, apparently loud and clear.

Most readers will have concluded, by now, that assessments of physical mediumship and the opinions expressed by those attending such seances are often poles apart.

It is foolhardy, indeed impossible, for those not attending to reach a conclusion about the genuineness of a physical medium, working under such conditions, entirely on published reports – and even experiencing such a seance may still leave us, literally, in the dark.

But I don’t believe we need to be left in a state of indecision or confusion on this important subject. There is another way of making that assessment and I’ll share it with you in my next Blog.

Bert Weedon consulted spirit doctor

Bert WeedonThe death of brilliant guitarist Bert Weedon, who influenced many of today’s musical icons – including Beatles Paul McCartney, John Lennon and George Harrison, as well as Eric Clapton and Brian May – was announced today. He died at his Beaconsfield, Buckinghamshire, home at the age of 91. Much will be written about his musical skills and charitable endeavours. But I suspect few of the obituaries will touch on his interest in spiritual healing and the help he received from George Chapman, a trance medium through whom the spirit of William Lang, a noted ophthalmic surgeon, conducted spirit operations.

I collaborated with Chapman on a book about this astonishing two-world healing partnership, Surgeon From Another World, which contains the testimonies of many grateful patients, including doctors and other medical specialists who consulted Chapman and Lang.

Although Bert Weedon is not one of the patients whose experiences are quoted in that book, I was able to discuss them with him when he and his lovely wife Maggie attended a dinner in Stratford-upon-Avon in 1998 to celebrate 50 years of the Chapman-Lang partnership. The dinner was hosted by the Spiritual Truth Foundation, of which I was chairman at that time (George and I are pictured below).

Weedon told me that he and his wife had enjoyed a long friendship with Chapman and had consulted the long-dead surgeon who operated through him on a number of occasions.

George Chapman and Roy StemmanDuring his long musical career, Bert Weedon accompanied many stars, including Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Nat King Cole and Judy Garland, as well as enjoying success as a solo performer and making hit records such as Apache. He was awarded an OBE in the 2001 Queen’s Birthday Honours List for his services to music, and he was also a leading figure in the showbusiness charity, the Grand Order of Water Rats.

George Chapman was consulted by many celebrities, including actors Laurence Harvey and Stanley Holloway, author Roald Dahl and his actress wife Patricia Neal, and romantic novelist Barbara Cartland. He died, at the age of 85, in 2006.

His son, Michael, also a healer, tells me he recalls Weedon playing guitar at one of his father’s celebrations, in the barn at Pant Glas, Wales, where he lived and saw patients. On another occasion the Weedons’ visit coincided with Patrick Juvet, the singer-songwriter who had a string of hits in France, as well as an English disco song, “I Love America”, who was also staying with Chapman. “So as you can imagine, it was a memorable weekend,” Michael adds. Juvet wrote about his consultations with spirit surgeon William Lang in his autobiography, Les Bleus Au Coeur (The Blue Heart) which was published in 2005.

Spiritist film festival opens in London

Chico film posterLONDON. A five-day free Spiritist film festival starts tomorrow in London. It features the teachings received at seances by Allan Kardec, on which Spiritism is based, as well as the remarkable abilities of some of its top automatic writing mediums – notably Candido “Chico” Xavier and Divaldo Franco – and the evidence for life after death they have provided.

The event takes place at Queen Mary, University of London, at Mile End. Some of the screenings are already sold out.

Divaldo Franco posterThe 1st Lusophonic Spiritist/Spiritualist Film Festival kicks off with a 2005 film, Allan Kardec, the Educator. Lusophonic – for those unfamiliar with the word – means “Portuguese-speaking”, reflecting the popularity of Spiritism in Brazil, which was once a Portuguese colony. The language is spoken by 263 million people, so it is ranked sixth in the world.

The good news is that all the films will have English subtitles. To view the programme and reserve a seat at one or more of the films, click here.  Business commitments will prevent me from attending until the final day and a screening of the biographical account of Chico’s life which was a box office hit in Brazil. I’ve also been asked to take part in a panel discussion  at the end of the film.

Regular readers of my Blog will remember that I wrote about the success of the biopic in April last year, so I welcome this opportunity to view it at last. At around the same time, I reviewed Guy Lyon Playfair’s book about the famous Brazilian, Chico Xavier: Medium of the Century for the Society for Psychical Research‘s Journal (published in Vol 75.2, No. 903, April 2011, pp125-127).

Now would seem to be a good time to share that review with readers of my Blog:


This is the compelling and complex story of Brazil’s most famous medium, automatist Francisco Cândido Xavier, better known to his countrymen and to Spiritists the world over as “Chico”.

Brazilians regard him as a national hero. He was nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize in 1981, having received two million petitions from his admirers, including a former Brazilian president. The people of Minas Gerais voted him their “mineiro” (as natives of the state are called) of the century, ahead of a former president and the legendary footballer Pelé. When he died in 2002, a queue two miles long formed as an estimated 120,000 waited to pay their last respects to him, and 30,000 joined the funeral procession.

Eight years later, he was far from forgotten. The Brazilian Post Office commemorated the centenary of his birth, on 2 April, 2010, by issuing a new stamp depicting Chico signing a book, the national mint issued a special medallion, and a movie about his life and work, called simply Chico Xavier, went on general release, breaking box office records as more than two million paid to see it in the first month.

It would be easy to dismiss such adulation if it were based on the same flimsy admiration that puts popstars on a pedestal and just as quickly discards them. But Playfair does a masterful job of demonstrating why such reverence is undoubtedly justified, suggesting in fact that “medium of the century” would be a suitable description for this simple, self-effacing man with the remarkable gift of psychography – the term Spiritists use for automatists controlled by spirits as opposed to those who practice automatic writing, which is seen as a manifestation of the subconscious.

Here, in a nutshell, is why Chico Xavier is so important, not only to Brazilians and Spiritists but to the whole field of parapsychology. The son of an illiterate lottery ticket seller, Chico left school at 13 having had a rudimentary education. Yet, within a few years, he was producing automatic writing scripts, apparently from different deceased authors and on topics about which he had never learned. Indeed, he admitted that he didn’t understand most of what was written through his hand.

Soon, these trance sessions were being held in public and there is ample testimony about the speed with which they were produced. One witness was a well-known writer of soap operas who reports: “Chico divided a pile of paper into two, went into trance, and started writing with both hands at the same time, getting simultaneous messages from André Luiz and Humberto de Campos. How could I still have any doubts when that happened right in front of me? That was too much.”

These two writers, along with Emmanuel, his chief spirit guide who is said to have been a Roman Emperor and a priest in previous incarnations, became the authors whose works, produced through Chico’s mediumship, have become best-sellers. Humberto de Campos was a well-known academician who took a great interest in Chico’s writing whilst still on Earth and made a study of Parnassus From Beyond The Tomb. This consists of 259 poems, written and signed by 56 of the greatest of Brazil’s and Portugal’s deceased poets through Chico’s industrious hand. He testified that “their authors were showing the same characteristics of inspiration and expression that identified them on this planet”. Another well-known Brazilian writer, Monteiro Lobato, declared: “If this man [Chico] produced all this on his own, then he can occupy as many chairs in the Academy as he likes!”

When Campos died, soon after studying Parnassus, he joined Chico’s band of spirits almost immediately, resulting in the five books he produced between 1937 and 1942 being praised by other writers, including one who commented that they were “full of the thousand and one technical mannerisms of Humberto”. His widow took Chico to court on the basis that, if these were produced by her dead husband, she was entitled to author’s rights. The judge decided that since Campos was dead, he no longer had rights.

The story of Chico Xavier’s mediumship would be impressive enough if it were just about great literary works being dictated from beyond. But Chico also produced scripts containing extraordinary personal evidence from dead loved ones, including names, dates and details that he could not have known by normal means. Some of this, we learn, was even used in court with dramatic results, including one case that made legal history.

It was not only Chico’s mediumship that inspired people, it was also his attitude to fame and fortune. He refused payment for his work, donating all the proceeds to Spiritist charities which helped the poor and the sick, including 50 welfare organisations that operate under the name Nosso Lar (Our Home), which happens to be the title of a monumental work, dictated by André Luiz, about life in the spirit world. Consisting of 12 books, nine of which are novels, it has been

Sceptics dream of world without woo-woo

Brian Cox on TVA Blog I wrote back in July 2011 on Prof Brian Cox has upset some of his supporters once again. Author Michael Prescott recently posted a link to my piece and all of a sudden I’ve found myself on the receiving end of comments from people who, for the most part, seem to know as little about the paranormal as the particle physicist himself.

My criticism of Cox at the time was that he was totally dismissive of ghosts. For the record, I don’t know which of the many theories about ghosts or apparitions is closest to the truth, but I do know that enough people have reported their ghostly experiences for most reasonable people to accept that it is a phenomenon worthy of investigation.

I wasn’t planning to return to the subject so soon, but the pin-up boy of astronomy, who pops up on television almost daily, has done it again – this time using his highly entertaining A Night With The Stars lecture, filmed at the Royal Institution of Great Britain and broadcast on BBC2 in December, as an opportunity to dismiss all paranormal phenomena.

Here’s what he had to say in his introduction:

“The best theory we have to describe matter is quantum theory. Now, I understand why quantum theory can seem a bit odd, I mean it makes some odd statements; it says, for example, that things can be in many places at once. In fact, technically, it says that things can be in an infinite number of places at once. It says that the sub-atomic building blocks of our bodies are shifting in response to events that happened at the edge of the known universe, a billion light years somewhere over there.

“Now this is all true but that isn’t a licence to talk utter drivel. You see, quantum theory might seem weird and mysterious but it describes the world with higher precision than the laws of physics laid down by Newton and it’s one of the foundations of our modern understanding of nature. It doesn’t therefore allow mystical healing or ESP or any other manifestation of New-Age woo woo into the pantheon of the possible. Always remember quantum theory is physics and physics is usually done by people without star signs tattooed on their bottom.”

He concluded his lecture by saying: “There is nothing strange; there is nothing weird; there’s no woo woo – it’s just beautiful physics.”

What Cox is overlooking – or deliberately ignoring – is that healing, ESP, ghosts and other so-called “paranormal” phenomena have been investigated by scientists whose qualifications are as good as his and their research may one day lead to these phenomena being better understood and even accepted as normal. Physics may be beautiful, but there’s still an awful lot we don’t understand about the workings of the Universe in which we exist. What sceptics regard as “woo-woo” today may prove to have great significance in the future.

It is worth noting that having filled his TV show with demonstrations of how things work, he offered no supporting evidence for his claim that quantum theory “doesn’t allow” ESP and other so-called paranormal phenomena.  A few years ago, I’m sure, Cox would have assured us just as confidently that nothing can travel faster than light. Yet recent experiments seem to point to the fact that neutrinos are able to do precisely that.

The irony is that Cox’s TV lecture began with this quote from 19th century chemist Sir Humphry Davy: “Nothing is so fatal to the progress of the human mind as to suppose our views of science are ultimate; that there are no new mysteries in nature; that our triumphs are complete; and that there are no new worlds to conquer.”

Perhaps Cox could be persuaded to ponder Davy’s wise words and how they might apply to his own thinking before he next steps into the spotlight.

Dr Rupert SheldrakeThe Science DelusionBetter still, he should consider the arguments put forward by Dr Rupert Sheldrake (left) in his new book, The Science Delusion: freeing the spirit of enquiry. I will be reviewing Sheldrake’s book shortly, but it is relevant to this discussion because he examines and challenges the 10 core beliefs of the scientific creed. He then offers an alternative philosophy, built around his theory of morphic resonance.

Sheldrake is a biologist and author whose research into telepathy has attracted a great deal of criticism from sceptics of the paranormal. Not only has he answered their criticisms but he has also said that one critic, Professor Richard Wiseman, has been deliberately deceptive in his reporting of Sheldrake’s research. In an interview last year with Alex Tsakiris on the excellent Skeptiko website/podcast, Sheldrake had this to say:

“Wiseman’s research on psychic pets was entirely parasitic on my research. He portrays himself as this kind of heroic debunking figure who goes in and exposes people who fool themselves about their dogs and so forth.  But, in fact, his own tests show an even bigger effect than I’d observed. Incredibly, he then appeared on TV and made press releases, wrote a scientific paper in a scientific journal, claiming to have refuted the effect we both demonstrated. It is completely outrageous, but as you say, he’s got away with it before. He’s been exposed before, but that seems completely irrelevant to him.”

ParanormalityRichard WisemanSheldrake made those comments after publication of Wiseman’s book, Paranormality: why we see what isn’t there. You’ll find the full details at “Dr Rupert Sheldrake on the persistence of Richard Wiseman’s deception“. The biologist has also pointed out that sceptics are not non-believers; they are believers in a materialist world. Here’s one reflection on their state of mind, delivered in another interview with Alex Tsakiris (“Dr Rupert Sheldrake and the Skeptics“, June 2008):

“These are mainly people who are committed to a kind of militant/atheist worldview. As far as they are concerned, if you allow any psychic phenomena to occur you are leaving a door open a crack and … who knows, within seconds you could have God back again and, even worse, the Pope. So, I think, for them, it’s almost like a kind of religious struggle. It’s like a crusade.”

For those who would like a fuller appraisal of Brian Cox’s TV performance, I recommend atheist and sceptic James Sheils’ “Double Twit Experiment – What Brian Cox Got Wrong“.

In addition to the Comments below, readers may like to view the very lively comments that have appeared on the Blog of American author Michael Prescott after he drew attention to my contribution, as well as the Comments that followed my earlier Blog on Cox.

New ‘Psychic News’ gets warm welcome

JVTrusteesNow that some initial technical problems with its website have been resolved, I’m delighted to report on the very successful relaunch of Psychic News as a magazine.

The happy event took place with the support of one of London’s oldest Spiritualist churches, the London Spiritual Mission, on 15 December 2011. It was heartwarming to see how much backing the publication was given from mediums, contributors and various organisations that have an interest in psychical and spiritual matters.

There was warm applause for Hugh Davis, Margaret Davis and Eric Hatton – the three trustees of JV Trust (pictured left), the charity that is the new owner of Psychic News.

Susan Farrow, managing director of the new company set up by JV Trust to publish Psychic News as a fortnightly printed and online publication, paid tribute to the trustees’ efforts and presented them with lifetime subscriptions to the magazine.

Sue spoke briefly about the events that had led to the change of ownership and introduced JV Trust’s chairman, Eric Hatton, who spoke about the important contribution Psychic News had made to the Spiritualist movement over almost eight decades and the promise he had made many years ago to its founder, Maurice Barbanell, to keep it in print. The publication now continues as the independent voice of Spiritualism under the trust’s protection.

As chairman of the new company, I was also delighted to say a few words, expressing my admiration for the loyalty and perseverance displayed by Sue Farrow and Paul Brett, both now directors of Psychic Press Ltd, during the period of more than a year when the publication’s future was in doubt.

The new Psychic News format has already been greeted with enthusiasm by many of its old subscribers. Some have been so pleased to see it back in print that they even refused to take advantage of a special discount offer that the directors made, to help compensate them for the financial loss they suffered when the previous owners, the Spiritualists’ National Union (SNU), closed the newspaper.

First 3 issuesThe first issue of the new magazine is still available online as a FREE download. The second issue was published on the last day of 2011. And the latest issue was published on the 14th. Full details of subscription rates can be found here, at the Psychic News website.

Topics already covered in the first three issues include an interview with Eric Hatton about the work of the JV Trust; ITC: spirit communication for a digital age; Spirit of Youth – the future of Spiritualism; Have researchers found a skeleton in Emma Hardinge Britten’s cupboard?; The way of the White Eagle Lodge; Spiritualism’s Principles in a new light; White Feather speaks on reincarnation; David Thompson’s former circle leader on physical mediumship; Faces of the Living Dead; Are you a Spiritualist or Survivalist?; and much more.

Those of us who have fought long and hard for the return of Psychic News are agreed that we should be focusing now very positively on the future and not dwell on past events or the behaviour of the SNU and its officers – subjects I have dealt with previously on this Blog.

That decision, however, is difficult to abide by when the SNU president, David Bruton, continues to comment on the closure with words that need to be challenged. In an interview in Two Worlds, in answer to a question about the liquidation of the company and the newspaper’s closure in 2010, Bruton says:

“I do not subscribe to a blame culture. No one person should take responsibility for what happened at Psychic News.

But then he adds that circulation fell at an alarming rate after Sue Farrow decided to move the editorial focus “to a more serious journalistic bias, taking the paper back to its roots under founding editor Maurice Barbanell,” adding: “I have to say that as executive director, I supported this editorial policy, but clearly it did not find favour with the wider readership.”

Sue Farrow may have decided to “move the editorial focus to a more serious journalistic bias” – how can that be wrong? – but Bruton is conveniently forgetting one thing.  Sue was an employee of Psychic Press (1995) Ltd. The SNU appointed her as Editor and had the power to fire her if they were not happy with her editorship.

She may have recommended a “back to Spiritualism’s basics” policy, but she could only have implemented that with the full backing of the Psychic Press (1995) directors, which she clearly received. If that decision was the reason for falling circulation, then it was the directors who were responsible, not their employee.

Sue, Paul and Roy with PNBesides, where is his evidence for blaming declining sales on this editorial shift? Did the SNU conduct a readership survey? There could have been several contributory factors.

To try to shift blame onto Sue’s shoulders just as she relaunches the new Psychic News is not only hurtful but shameful.

And one wonders, if he really believes her style of editorship lost readers, why Bruton referred to Sue during the last Board meeting as “the best editor since Barbanell.”

Being two-faced is not a quality one expects from an SNU president. The reality is that the SNU, with plenty of resources, totally mismanaged the effects of declining readership – a phenomenon experienced by practically all publishing companies – and must shoulder full responsibility for the decisions it took.

It should have restructured the company in a way that allowed it to inject more funds into the business and rejuvenate it. This is what another Spiritualist charity has done, very successfully.

I’ve said before that those within the SNU who were involved in Psychic News’ closure should hang their heads in shame and this recent attempt by Bruton to place the blame elsewhere simply reinforces that view.

Fortunately, Psychic News is now in safe hands, with Sue and Paul Brett (pictured with me, above) at the helm, and under the stewardship of Spiritualists whose motives, values and acumen are more in tune with its long-established purpose. All they need now is the full support of Spiritualists around the world, and with a six-month online subscription costing only £14, that’s not asking a lot.

[Photos (c) Danny Lee]