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River deep, mountain high – two weeks in April 1968

The title is a reference to the song made famous by Ike and Tina Turner in 1966, lavishly and operatically (some might say bombastically) produced by Phil Spector. Fortunately for this blog, Eric Burdon and the Animals (themselves not averse to musical pyrotechnics) reprised the song in 1968, the year that is the focus of… Read more

Cultural diversity in London, 1821

For many people, there was a golden age when Britain was truly British, populated by the British, with shared cultural and religious values. This golden age is variously identified as that of King Arthur, or Elizabeth I or Victoria, or Churchill, among others. As is the case with most golden ages, all too often the… Read more

Grade I status conferred on British mosque with extraordinary history

On Tuesday 13 March, Historic England conferred Grade I listed status on the Shah Jahan Mosque in Woking, Surrey, which thereby became the first mosque to receive this status in the country. There had been other registered mosques in the UK before the Woking mosque, the earliest on record being the Liverpool Muslim Institute, which… Read more