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Invasion of Ukraine

Today I was asked by ITV New Anglia West to comment on the feelings of the local Russian-speaking community on the invasion of Ukraine. My heart goes out to the people of Ukraine, they are in my thoughts and prayers.

PS I said the truth – when I was talking to the press on the third day of the war, I hadn’t encountered anyone who supported this atrocious invasion.  Later on, very sadly, I discovered that such people exist…

Good luck to the graduates!

Graduation ceremony is in full swing in Cambridge; slightly unusual timing but there is still a lot of catching up to do from last year. Yesterday, over 500 smiling, happy people proceeded to the Senate House in orderly, regularly spaced out groups, wearing all sorts of colour linings on their hoods – scarlet silk for PhDs, blue for MPhils, light-blue for MEds, and white fur for BAs, to name but a few. Let’s wish them good luck for the future!

No Mooore Gin

No “Mooore Gin” any mooore… The colourful visitors, Cows about Cambridge, who so triumphantly invaded the city two months ago, are all now gone, and, unexpectedly, the spaces they left behind look strikingly bare.

Cambridge scientists in a shop

I popped into Ted Baker’s the other day – not to browse through their garments, of course, but simply to look at the interior, and was pleasantly surprised to see some familiar Cambridge characters on the wall. There was Isaac Newton’s rough-hewn image with a piercing gaze, a strikingly young and handsome Lord Rayleigh, and a heavily bearded old Darwin deeply engrossed in his thoughts. ‘What a great idea’, I noted, ‘male scientists as role models to inspire the customers to aim high’.

Then a grand staircase leading to the women’s department caught my attention – and I was almost flying up the stairs before I knew it, in the anticipation of a close encounter with Rosalind Franklin perhaps, or Dorothy Hodgkin, or Jocelyn Bell Burnell. Guess whom or what I saw there instead? Just a couple of dead birds on the wall…

Cambridge scientists and dead birds: inside Ted baker's shop in Cambridge

Larger groups can now meet!

Guiding larger groups is now possible on the streets of Cambridge. According to the new rules:

– Gatherings of up to 30 are allowed outdoors since 17th May 2021. Hence, our guided tours in Cambridge are returning to the usual group size of maximum 20 people.

– Indoor guiding (if and when it becomes possible) will still be in goups of maximum 6 people, plus the guide.

– Social distancing is still important, but it will now be people’s *personal responsibility*, i.e. it will be up to individuals to decide how far they wish to distance themselves from each other. (As a guide, I will need to make sure there is enough room for everyone to be comfortably positioned on the narrow streets of Cambridge!)

– Tracking and tracing will be carried out as before.

Guiding larger groups is now allowed outdoors

Round churches around the world

Our Round Church in Cambridge is not alone – she has sisters around the world. Guess where these two are!

Three Round Churches

Peep at the answer

The Temple Church, Temple, London EC4Y 7BB

Santo Sepolcro, Brindisi, Italy

The Church of the Holy Sepulchre (The Round Church), Cambridge, CB2 1UB.

We are back on the streets!

From the beginning of this week (29.03.2021), we can meet in groups of six outdoors, or larger groups as long as they are no more than two households. Hence, Tangential Cambridge is resuming its tours, which will comply with COVID-19 regulations. Watch this space!

Ladybirds
A small group of “punters” outdoors

Pre-Christmas Tour – December 2020

On Christmas eve, we ventured out into the freezing streets of Cambridge for a socially distanced walk, just before the new lockdown. It was invigoratingly crisp and merry; we talked about mistletoe and fir trees, camels and festive food, myths, fables and customs, and admired some of the homemade pre-Christmas decorations in Cambridge, such as St. John the Evangelist in a Father Christmas hat on the gate of the eponymous sixteenth-century college.

Excellent news from King’s College Chapel

Excellent news from King’s College Chapel: guided tours are now being offered from Tuesday to Friday this week only (half-term) at the following times: 10:00 – 10.45am, 11:00 – 11.45am, 1:00 – 1.45pm, and 2:00 – 2.45pm. After this, public tours of the Chapel will be offered every Saturday from this coming weekend (31st October) until the end of term. To book: https://www.kings.cam.ac.uk/visit/your-visit

Kings Chapel 3 062019

Haunted Cambridge tours

The “Haunted Cambridge” ghost tours by Cambridge tourist guides continue every Friday and Saturday night at 6:30pm, from the front of Great St Mary’s Church (opposite the Senate House). Booking is strongly recommended, as the groups need to be small to observe social distancing. In anticipation of Halloween, there will be two tours every night at the end of October – beginning of November. Visit https://Haunted-Cambridge.uk (click on Tours, to book a tour).

HauntedCambridge 1