• The rise of the new

    If you believe the national chatter in the media and social networks, we're all living in fear of what we now term "young people"; the ones being blamed for the lawless rioting witnessed across the country and dubbed a lost generation of "no-hopers".

    It's not true of the children, teenagers and young adults that I know from my community in Hackney or from the friends and class mates of my children…

    • 15 Aug 2011
  • Hostile times

    Riots, financial crisis and global droughts. The world can be a hostile place.

    Cycling back home to Hackney from work was an unsettling experience. I didn't know what I'd find or encounter after passing the lines of parked-up buses  in Balls Pond Road, which marked the exclusion zone. Neighbours businesses were lost and my community was left fragile and uncertain. Thankfully nothing like the losses felt elsewhere…

    • 12 Aug 2011
  • Blackberry love

    I've almost filled the freezer with this year's blackberries. Big juicy ones plucked from brambly hedges in Ye Olde Hackney town.

    Now I know what you're thinking. How dare I deprive the poor birds of all that deep velvety berry goodness. Well, I'll make sure I make up for it by inviting said birds and other wildlife to come dine with me. The menu includes seed cake and suet pastry rubbings followed…

    • 5 Aug 2011