An undercover clergyman

Scrapper Duncan's cartoon of an anonymous church somewhere (c) January 2015

A building surrounded by dead bodies

This weekend I travelled to see some friends who are social media refuseniks. So I can’t tell you anything about my visit because they are strict with information. All I can say is that I was in or around Chipping Norton, the stamping ground of our Prime Minister and his ilk. My hosts informed me that I missed a glimpse of Rebekah Brooks speeding past in her car because I had bent down to photograph a snowdrop.

On Saturday I visited a church which one of my hosts had repaired. Obviously I can’t tell you which church or where it was. I photographed it and was proud of my shot framing but I can’t show the photograph either. So today’s cartoon is my artistic impression of a church which looks a bit like it. Suffice to say that it is a very old church.

My hosts’ child scampered around inside the church looking at the seats and so on. When she got to the stairs to the pulpit, she readily ascended them. A few steps up and she was in the preaching position. “What’s this Mummy?” My friend explained that it was a pulpit, from which a vicar would talk about God. By way of further explanation, she said, “You’ve got one of these, haven’t you Duncan?

Yes,” I replied, “but mine is outdoors and considerably larger.” An elderly couple in the church had wandered close by us at this point. These remarks caught their attention. Later on I noticed them scrutinising me curiously. I don’t suppose they’ve seen so many clergymen looking like me, with an army great coat, shaved head and a generally menacing look about them. Perhaps they went home and looked up outdoors pulpits on the internet. Or perhaps not. Sometimes it is better not to know.

Anyhow, it gave me an idea. I rarely step inside churches. Our Society has surely evolved far beyond the point of Engel’s description of their role as the opium of the masses. Mostly they are irrelevant to our modern concepts of sin, morality, heaven and hell. As my most attentive followers will know, I am shortly about to publish a book on moral philosophy, to put everyone straight.

As they stand, our churches do provide a social service of sorts for a particular sort of person. In many instances it is fairly specific sort of person. All of them wish to recruit from there wider community. I’m part of that community too! So from here on, for the next few weeks, I’m going to visit a different church every Sunday, incognito, and publish my report here.

Despite my reputation as a militant atheist, I will offer up my words of wisdom with the attitude of constructive criticism and, where appropriate, praise. Actually, I’ve already visited one such church, where my welcome was warm. Rather too warm, as it happened. Not what I’d expected from the Church of England. More of that in future weeks. When this Archbishop goes to church!

Is the Green surge meaningful?

Scrapper Duncan's cartoon of Jason Kitcat waving an apocalypse button around in Brighton Town Hall (c) March 2014

Jason Kitcat in his dreams

The big political news last week in the UK was that the Green Party was recruiting more members than any other party, by a country mile. They are said to have overtaken the Liberal Democrats in overall numbers and not be far behind UKIP. If ever there was a sure indicator that British politics is in for a big change, it is the sudden decision of lots of previously non-political people to actually join a political party. UKIP had a similar surge earlier in the year. They’ve been joined by lots of old people previously disinterested in politics. The Greens have been joined by lots of young people who are just entering the political arena for the first time.

I’ve been a Green Party member on and off for the last ten years. (I’m currently not.) My ex-wife talked me in originally. The on-the-ground politics of the party talked me out. I rejoined when Caroline Lucas got elected and left again when ‘her’ local councillors appeared to be unable to consistently endorse progressive political values. Brighton & Hove City Council’s Green leadership lacks a majority on the council but it also lacks moral backbone. Their leader, Jason Kitcat, has privatised part of his local NHS, provoked the classic political disaster ~ a refuse collector’s strike ~ and generally been about as right-wing as a Liberal Democrat. His old party, in fact.

The Greens are using the surge in their membership to argue that they have become a major party and should be included in the national leaders’ debates on telly. Ofcom and the broadcasters decide who is a major party. The test the Greens must pass revolves around the number of votes they can muster, not the number of members they can collect.

When I first joined the Greens I argued that the party should set massive membership growth as one of its key targets. The local activists were mystified as to why. They’re not now. It is well known that there are only a certain number of would be political activists in each generation. If they join one party instead of another, they shift the parameters of the debate towards that party. Double our membership and swing the debate, I said. We don’t think so, they said.

This isn’t about me, it’s about the Greens. We live in a society in which many people regard clicking on a like button or signing a petition as active community involvement. Thatcher’s children are not self-employed business people, they are passive consumers. The question is whether all these new members intend to become political activists or whether they are happy to blindly support what their new found political leaders say, for a while? I hope it is the former. I hope they get stuck into policy decisions, turn up to meetings and express their views. Only then will the Greens’ reactionary members be overcome. Currently they run the roost and Caroline Lucas is little more than a figurehead for change.

Great political cartoons kick the man and the ball

A couple of weeks ago I decided to publish this blog on a Monday only and make it weekly. Then three Frenchmen decided to kill some of my fellow cartoonists, some police guarding them, some associate journalists, a janitor on his first day at work in their office and some random people belonging to a rival religion. So I delayed publication whilst wondering whether I should publish my own cartoon of the prophet Mohammed.

I recalled the days when the South African government banned the publication of pictures of Nelson Mandela or the ludicrous decision by the British Government to ban the Gerry Adams from being broadcast at the same time as his own voice. It occurred to me that the prohibition is aimed at obliterating idolatry and the deranged men with guns aren’t really concerned about representations of all living things, only pictures of their preferred religious leader. So how about pictures of Mohamed’s wife?

So I thought about drawing a cartoon of Mohamed’s wife, in a highly erotic pose, clutching at her groin, looking desperate for attention, inside a tent, with the words of Mr M entering the tent from outside in speech bubbles. The bubbles would be full of proclamations banning this and that. Inside the tent would be a thought bubble from Mrs M, saying, “He’s got a lot to say to his menfolk but nothing to give to his wife.” A cartoon like that kicks the man, not the ball, as our football crazy politicians like to say. The nice shiny shiny brigade who dominate our half-baked democratic system love to say things like that. Because they’ve got no sense of humour.

It really is that simple. The nicest of the nicey-wouldn’t-harm-a-fly politicians are in the Green Party. Their most successful local party (Brighton & Hove) recently banned their members from engaging in communications involving personal attacks. True, at the last moment they added a clause to allow satire, but the mood music is clear. They will refuse membership to all political cartoonists, impressionists, writers, artists etc. They don’t want us involved because we’re not nice. We sometimes kick the ball and the man.

The Greens are no special case. Almost every week Nigel Farage’s UKIP makes some nonsensical complaint to a major social media company, complaining about a parody account. Given half a chance, they would ban satire altogether. Farage’s famous laugh would be the only merriment allowed.

When was the last time you heard a politician crack an ad-lib joke? The answer is not in your lifetime. They are all lovingly prepared in advance and scripted by other people, who are trained at managing politicians. People who understand that anyone who shits, farts, pisses and fucks and can be made to look ridiculous.

So here’s to Charlie Hebdo and everything it stands for. Here’s to provoking people who can’t cope with being provoked. Here’s to lampooning the powerful, mocking the majestic and inking up injustice as art, expressed freely. Je suis Charlie.

‘Tis the season of the shiny bicycle

This is the week of good intentions. Despite the fashion for poo-pooing New Year Resolutions, most British people will be focusing their minds on self-improvement, personal reform and avoiding stuff they love to the point of self-destruction. It may surprise you to learn that it’s no different for us clergy. We too aspire to live better, we just start from a higher place than the rest of you.

Scrapper Duncan's photograph of his dirty rear sprockets (c) Jan 2015

It’s not sprocket science

In keeping with hundreds of thousands of British males, yesterday I decided was a really good day for cleaning my bicycle. It was worthy procrastination. If I don’t use the bicycle in the next seven days, it will have been a waste of time. So now I’ve guilt-tripped myself into some form of activity. Although we abandoned Catholicism as a state religion rather a long time ago, we still rely on its therapeutic techniques.

Scrapper Duncan's photograph of a bicycle chain cleaning tool (c) January 2015

We live in chains

That’s my bicycle chain cleaning tool. I spent years fiddling about with old toothbrushes, just to find the chain not much cleaner and everything around splattered with tiny particles of road dirt. Then I invested in this contraption. Inside are various wheeled brushes which get right into the chain. The orange liquid in the top compartment is an over-priced degreaser from Halfords. When it runs out, I’ll use washing up liquid instead. With the bike upside down, you push the pedals, hold onto the plastic box and hey presto! After a few revolutions, the drive chain emerges clean and functional. The dirty liquid collects in the bottom and there is no mess!

Scrapper Duncan's photograph of his bicycle's rear sprockets disassembled in the sink (c) January 2015

Just sink about it

The rear sprockets are fiddly to clean on the bicycle. So I removed them. When I replaced my rear wheel last year, I bought the splined system of rear hub, it’s much easier to remove and replace than the old screw thread system. This is the first time it has come off and it was a doddle. Though I had slightly forgotten how to work the chain whip.

Scrapper Duncan's photograph of his bicycle's clean rear sprockets (c) January 2015

Cleanliness is next to godliness

I used to believe that cogs, sprockets and chains could never be returned to their shop bought shininess. As if the filth from car exhausts and God only knows what had some supernatural force. The fact is that everything can be cleaned up, except possibly our atmosphere (it may be too late) and the Tory Party (they were born to be unclean). Political jokes aside, the problem was my lack of belief. Yesterday, I kept the faith and you can see the results above!

Scrapper Duncan's photograph of a Stanley Ley tunic shirt being used to clean a dirty bicycle chain (c) January 2015

Never lose your shirt

Finally, I reassembled the bicycle and dried the chain by dragging it through an old shirt, clenched in my hands. A tunic shirt from a London legal outfitter. Friends of mine are well used to seeing me in these old-fashioned garments. I strongly suggest you do not let your shirts go as threadbare as I do before turning them over to mechanical cleaning, because otherwise the threads can easily get caught up in everything.

My New Year Resolutions

Can’t seem to find last year’s New Year Resolutions. They don’t appear on this blog. Perhaps I didn’t make any? If I did, it seems unlikely that I kept them without any way of checking what they actually were. I have found my resolutions for 2012. Humbly beg to report that, three years later, I have achieved the sixth resolution on that list: I now weigh 12½ stone. And feeling good for it. 2013’s resolutions were largely achieved, though I still lack the six pack that my wife wanted me to get at that time. We’ve separated now so I don’t really have the necessary motivation to do ten thousand sit ups every week.

This year my resolutions are going to be very specific goals. Resolutions are deeply unfashionable in our fickle culture. “I may change my life any day,” is a common sentiment. More often than not from people who make no effort at self-improvement whatsoever. Making resolutions at the turn of the year does not preclude improving yourself later on in the year. Making excuses now is likely to infect your attitude during the rest of the year. If you can’t face down your demons in the darkness, you’re not going to acknowledge them in the light.

Enough with the prefatory remarks! Here’s my resolutions:

  1. Finish 50,000 draft book by 1st March.
  2. Finish editing of said book by 1st April.
  3. Publish the fucker.
  4. Launch business with my old pal Rob as per discussions in 2014.
  5. Move to Lewes.
  6. Become fit enough to cycle 100 miles a day at the drop of a hat.

Dear readers, please hold me to these resolutions by any means necessary! My good friend, Ben Duncan, who knows about my book idea, has already taken to phoning me frequently and shouting down the phone, “How many chapters have you written today?!” If you don’t have my phone number, please tweet your encouragement/harassment. It will be much appreciated at this end.

I’ll be welcoming the New Year in Southover, in Lewes, near to where I’ll soon be moving. I won’t be wishing anyone a Happy New Year until the midnight hour because Scottish tradition teaches that is terribly bad luck. The English may not understand how to celebrate hogmanay but they can be re-educated. One party at a time.

So if you’re in my congregation, many blessings on you this evening. May you spend it with the proper combination of good cheer and constructive contemplation. If you’re not in my congregation, don’t worry, we will probably accept new members again this year. It doesn’t mean you’re a bad person.

An accidental pagan

(c) Roz Bassford-South's photograph of pagans greeting the shortest day in 2014

Enthusiastic pagans on Firle Beacon

Yesterday morning I accidentally joined a pagan gathering at dawn on Firle Beacon. Me, an Archbishop! Am I the only man of the cloth who has communed with the cosmos according to our conception of pre-Christian belief structures? What will my fellow clergy say? I have yet to answer to them and my congregation. Luckily I have eleven months to prepare for that showdown.

An hour or so before dawn I thought I would just be joining a few friends at the top of the hill to greet the sunrise on the shortest day of the year. Oddly, I’d never been to Firle Beacon so it seemed an innocent and opportune moment.

We were welcomed into a little circle of people standing around a small fire. “Shh!” said one of my companions as I chattered away. Silence. Stillness. A special moment as the sun rose behind a cloud-swept sky. A couple of dozen souls bore testimony to the turning of the year. A couple of dogs stood inside our ring, looking almost as confused as I was. What on earth was going on?

Then the ceremonies began. A speaker on each side of the circle directed us the four points of the compass. Each direction was hailed with words of gratitude for the different aspects of life. When we turned back towards the fire, I looked down in unsure contemplation and spied a ring of holly and ivy around the fire… At was at this point, it suddenly dawned on me that these people, they were all were pagans!

(c) Roz Bassford-South, photograph of a dog standing by a solstice fire, 2014

Humans are very hard to understand.

We took it turns to speak thanks for that which we were grateful for. Later on I discovered that our gratitude was addressed to a female deity of some sort. What would the baby Jesus say? Have I lost my place in heaven now?! I had been much looking forward to my front row seat. Is there a pagan heaven? Can I get in there instead? Lost in these thoughts, I found a strange calm had overcome me. So when it was my turn to express myself, I thanked whosoever had carried the wood up the hill.

We sang songs, burnt frankincense on the fire and danced about. I didn’t sing but not because of some theological objection but because no-one wants to hear me sing! I danced a bit but my trousers were too wet and cold to get carried away. Mainly I wondered why the OS triangulation point was obviously below the top of the hill. So I went and stood above the trig point, which is a rare opportunity. That’s me in my red coat in the top picture.

Afterwards we retired to a Cliffe household and took our trousers off. Be assured this was not some more secret pagan ritual. All our trousers had an appointment with a tumble drier.

Photographs reproduced with the generous permission of Roz Bassford-South.

The secret location of the anarchists’ energy

Feroxity's (punk metal band) lead singer at Sticky Mike's Frog Bar on 19th November 2014

Feroxity’s lead screamer

Spied me darting about over the last few weeks, scurrying here and there? Startled by my strange, shabby clothes? I’ve been undercover, in the outlandish world of the anarchists. To boldly go where clergymen sometimes go, into a community of politically motivated individuals.

We know what makes anarchists’ tick. But we don’t know where they get their famous energy from? In embarrassingly small numbers they can close motorways, occupy power stations, throw legendary parties which everyone later claims they attended and apparently threaten the very fabric of capitalism.

Now clearly lying around in bed all day long, being a dolie scrounger has got to help. But counterpointed against that is the cannabis consumption, which is apt to make one completely fekking lazy; so I am reliably informed.

So into their world I went. To find a communion populated by frighteningly knowledgeable individuals, who knew exactly the enormity of the task facing them. But it didn’t faze them. Weeks of intricate conversations about everything under the sun indicated many of them did not wish to create a permanent state of anarchy to live in, as a model for civil society.

Instead they only wished to create moments of anarchy, then to step into that blessed dawn. That’s bound to be an inspirational experience, I surmised. Actually achieving your political ideals from time to time. Across the centuries. How many others could claim their long history of success? It did not matter that not everyone is involved, when anarchists of this persuasion kicked off. They were.

But even allowing for this carry on to become addictive and thus appear to provide the get-up-and-get-stuck-in factor, it did not completely explain the phenomena. What about all the other anarchists? The ones who want to turn the world into some sort of scheme according to their ideological principle? They also go out and campaign hard, leaflet, organise meetings, events, parties and tend to be full members of their communities. What about them?

The answer, I discovered, after months of painstaking work, lies in their spiritual recharging system. Ostensibly billed as “music” gigs, they are anything but, as the video above reveals. Although admittedly my phone’s microphone couldn’t cope with the volume levels. A week ago today, I was at that vegan anarchist punk rock gig. It was much the same sort of thing as last time. Though no actual audience punch up this time, thank God.

A hundred or so souls packed into a basement below a pub quiz at Sticky Mike’s Frog Bar. I heard two anarchist preachers. The first, not a word, just his visceral power, blasted through what I suspect was for him an unnecessary sound system. The second, the extraordinary and estimable Dick Lucas, fronting the Subhumans. Sermonising between ‘tunes’, his political and cultural analysis of our world was more coherent than any politician’s. Tell it like is Dick, we thought. Tell us what we already know. And loudly. Give us, this day, our daily rage.

Probing where the sun don’t shine

Scrapper Duncan's cartoon of boffins at the European Space Agency (c) 14th November 2014

European Space Agency boffins in action

Yesterday I warned mad scientists everywhere to hesitate before launching probes into heaven, lest they offend The Lord God Almighty. Today He showed his anger by messing up the Philae lander on Comet 67P. It stayed in darkness. Mission Control at the European Space Agency has been scrambling in the last few hours of their toy’s battery life to dream up how to move to the sunshine. What part of this don’t they understand? If God wanted there to be light on a certain crater on that distant lump of rock and ice, he would have simply said, “Let there be light.” He did not. Instead he chose a landing site certain to crush the mission and all the atheistic hopes that rose with it.

The earth-bound boffins see only their gravitational solutions. They use formulae to explain how their robot did not land where they intended. They say the thing bounced off the comet, twice, and then landed somewhere unintended because the comet had continued to rotate during the bounces. No-one questions this point of view because if the maths got the washing machine all that way with any degree of accuracy, then maths must explain all. “It’s Newton, innit?” said one of the switch flickers when he wasn’t throwing his hat in the air, whooping and generally being a lifelong virgin. But Newton believed in God! They don’t like to talk about that.

Let’s look at the plain facts. Humans live on Planet Earth, which is a mostly harmless blue green planet on the outer arm of our galaxy. God lives in Heaven, which is everything above and outside the atmosphere of Planet Earth. God is all powerful, all knowing and all round brilliant at everything. He even has a prophetic grip on the future. Therefore, He knew that his most unruly of creations ~ mankind ~ would one day attempt to land a kitchen appliance on this particular comet. So he chose the comet’s spin and poor gravity and general hopelessness as a landing site. And he chose to ensure that our probe landed in a dark shitty hole.

Yet still the Tefal brigade are scratching their bonces and attempting outlandish calculations on how to walk the static machine into a sunnier spot. (Two duvet covers and a fast spin cycle ought to do the trick.) Which part of His Plan do they not understand? They’ve had a lucky escape. The Lord has snuffed out their little game without much ceremony. It could have been so much worse.

We must all write letters to white haired crazy science loons and beg them to stop offending God. He does have form for being nasty to those who upset him. Just look what he did to the Egyptians. More to the point, check out what happened to the dinosaurs. The mind boggles at what they must have done to upset The Lord so badly that he exterminated them. With a comet!

Dropping a cosmic clanger!

Scrapper Duncan's cartoon of Michael Angelo's Sistine Chapel painting of Adam and God with the addition of the Phaeli probe (c) 13th November 2014

Oh look, a badger?!

Am I the only Archbishop in Christendom troubled by the implications of today’s news from the world of science? Surely some other leading theologians wish the mad scientists, who have landed a washing machine on a comet, had consulted us first?

Scrapper Duncan's cartoon of God (c) 17th June 2014

Nasty piece of work

What on earth were they thinking? It’s obvious we have a vengeful God. We know this because (a) it says so in the Bible and (b) look at all the shitty things that so-called Nature does to us. All that crap can’t have happened by accident. When there’s an obvious conclusion to draw, don’t go off looking for some complex explanation that needs microscopes or telescopes to understand. That way only leads to madness or confusion, or both.

The world has gone completely mad. Only the other day, the Pope in Rome was claiming that there are likely to be other worlds in the Universe with life on them just like ours! He’s way out of line. Clearly, as a Catholic, his job is to deny everything. Otherwise, where’s the space for us Anglicans to show off our liberal credentials by having rational discussions? Also, he’s not even waited until some apparently irrefutable evidence presented itself. He’s leapfrogging ahead of science. Well out of order.

Meanwhile, I remain utterly baffled why we went to all that trouble to send a washing machine to the comet? Sure, the astronauts who went to the lunar surface all reported that Moon dust was a bugger to get out of your clothes. But we haven’t sent any humans this time. All that money wasted on sending a standard kitchen appliance. Why? If one more person says something like, “Because it is there…” I swear I’ll go and get the bloody thing back myself.

Clearly, if the Lord God Almighty had wanted us to put 1950s laundry technology on comets, he’d had placed them a lot closer to home. Whilst we mustn’t imagine for a moment that we can know the mind of God, we can be pretty sure even he wouldn’t want us to be time wasting on the monumental scale that this enterprise has taken. Ten years in the spin cycle before getting to the destination.

Believe you me, this will have upset Him big time. I’m no prophet. I cannot predict what the consequences will be. But they will be worse than your humble servant having a few holes blown in his clerical garments. Considerable worse. It’ll probably go tit for tat. Perhaps he’ll throw a washing machine back at us. I bet His aim will be better.

Meanwhile, the time-space continuum has been warped out of shape. Pictures from the comet landing first arrived in 1969, much to the delight of all the children in my generation. Little did we know that the dodgy pink woollen puppets were actually God’s other children on another world, laughing at our domestic servitude? What am I saying?! Jesus, we beseech you. Save us from science ~ before we learn what we cannot forget!

Scrapper Duncan's cartoon of The Clangers (c) 13th November 2014

Artist’s impression of 67P

The view from a clergy stand at Lewes Bonfire

The Lewes Bonfire Bishops' First Breakfast, photographed and (c) by Roz Bassford-South, reproduced with her generous permission

The Lewes Bonfire Bishops’ First Breakfast. Photograph by Roz Bassford-South.

Being Archbishop of Southover is a tough brief. All year round my congregation presses cake and beer into my hands, to absolve their later sins against me. I’ve worked the roughest street corners, with the nastiest of criminals and been in the thick of it in the most anarchic public protestations imaginable. But nothing compares to Lewes Bonfire. Each clergy prays for deliverance. This year we all came together, for the first time ever, to discuss survival tactics, swap stories and sit down to breakfast on 4th November.

Southover Bonfire Society at Lewes Town War Memorial. Photograph reproduced with the generous permission of and (c) Ian Cumming.

Southover Bonfire Society at Lewes Town War Memorial. Photograph by Ian Cumming.

I was incredibly nervous. On the morning of 5th November, my stomach was knotted up into a tight ball of anguish. I think I was worried that I would not be able to make myself heard over the din. Also, at the back of my mind and creeping ever forward as we marched down the hill, was the unsubtle message we’d received from Cliffe Bonfire Society. They  promised a surprise for us when we marked the boundary between the parishes of Cliffe and Southover. That boundary is subject to the inevitable rivalry. We say it is on the middle of the bridge, they say it is on our side of the bridge. I’m pleased to report that the surprise turned out to be a welcoming committee and the boundary was properly marked according to Southover’s cartographic wishes.

Southover Church, 5th November 2014. Photograph reproduced with the generous permission of and (c) Ian Cumming.

Southover Church, 5th November 2014. Photograph by Ian Cumming.

My final public speaking was at Southover Church, at our own memorial service, out on the streets. My job was to introduce the visiting vicar, whose job seems to be considerably easier than mine.

Southover Bonfire Society fire site procession 2014. Photograph reproduced with the generous permission of and (c) Ian Cumming.

Advance! Photograph by Ian Cumming.

The Archbishop of Southover, processing to his clergy stand in Southover. Photograph reproduced with the generous permission of and (c) Ian Cumming.

Processing to my clergy stand. Photograph by Ian Cumming.

By the time we advanced towards our private fire site, I had nearly lost my voice. It is difficult to shout across crowds with all that smoke around. No matter, I had brought my megaphone this year! Nothing would stop my supplicants from being able to hear my sermonising, no matter how hard they tried!

Southover Bonfire Society clergy taking a direct hit. Photograph reproduced with the generous permission of and (c) James McCauley.

Photograph by James McCauley.

That’s one of my clergymen taking a direct hit. Here’s one of his legs afterwards. It gives you an idea of what we go through.

A clergyman's knee, after Southover Bonfire Society's sermon on 5th November 2014

A clergyman’s knee

Using a megaphone to address my congregation whilst wearing ear plugs was tricky. Afterwards a parishioner said they heard me saying, “We can feel your love.” A remark they seemed to find incredibly funny. I know they love us really, they just have difficulty showing it in any recognisable manner.

I give the sermon and get hell fire and brimstone in return. Photograph reproduced with the generous permission of and (c) Ian Cumming.

Sermonising in hell fire. Photograph by
Ian Cumming.

When it was all over we were all still standing. We looked down upon our flock with renewed respect.

View from Southover Bonfire Society's clergy stand in 2014. Photograph reproduced with the generous permission of and (c) Ian Cumming.

The view from on high. Photograph by Ian Cumming.

Many thanks to the photographers who have given their generous permission to reproduce their images: Roz Bassford-South, Ian Cumming and James McCauley.