THE Daily Mail reports on the sale at an auction of a rare album of comic First World War postcards by 'saucy seaside' artist Donald McGill.

They say that the Inter-Art Company's book, printed in 1917, shows hundreds of tongue-in-cheek war illustrations and was bought by James Bissell-Thomas, owner of the Donald McGill Postcard Museum in Ryde, Isle of Wight.

He said: “It's so exciting to have found this album at auction. I knew the book existed, but I thought that over the years it may have been broken up and the postcards sold off individually.”

McGill was famous for his comic seaside cards but during the war he also produced 1,500 different designs of patriotic postcards. It seems that the endangered red Squirrel species have been successfully returned to the Highlands area of north-west Scotland.


The Guardian has been reporting on the early results of a reintroduction project. Red squirrels had disappeared due to the reduction of forests to just isolated remnants, as well as disease and competition from the introduced non-native grey squirrel.

“Early indications are that this could be a real wildlife success story. The new squirrel populations are not only flourishing and breeding in their new homes, they are also starting to spread out into new areas, with squirrels being sighted as far as 15km [9 miles] away,” said Becky Priestley, Trees for Life’s wildlife officer.

The red squirrel has experienced a dramatic population decline in recent years.

In 2007, just 25,000 could be found throughout the UK after a one-time high of 3.5 million.


 The BBC tells us that fossils, dating back 145 million years, of the oldest-known ancestors of most living mammals, including human beings, have been found in cliffs on the Dorset coast.

“We have discovered from the Jurassic coast a couple of shrew-like things that are to date unequivocally our earliest ancestors,'' said Dr Steve Sweetman, of Portsmouth University, who examined the ancient teeth.


 On display at the North Wall Arts Centre, Oxford are rare and largely unseen images of Lenin from a vast British archive which for nearly a century has been promoting cultural relations between the UK and Russia.

The Guardian says there are many striking images, including the photograph of Lenin without his familiar bald head and manicured goatee, produced for his fake ID card when he needed to flee Petrograd in 1917 and cross the border to Finland.

A photograph taken by Lenin’s sister Maria in 1922 shows him stroking a cat at his residence in the village of Gorki, near Moscow.


According to The Independent, plans to pedestrianise part of London's Oxford Street have been unveiled.

The proposals, from the capital city's Mayor Sadiq Khan, would mean that the half-mile section between Oxford Circus and Orchard Street would be traffic-free from east to west.

He said: “Oxford Street is world famous with millions of visitors every year, and in just over a year the iconic part of the street west of Oxford Circus could be transformed into a traffic-free pedestrian boulevard.

“Whether you’re a local resident, a business, or shop in some of the area’s famous stores, our plans will make the area substantially cleaner and safer for everyone, creating one of the finest public spaces in the world.”


 A three-storey section of an east London council estate - Robin Hood Gardens in Poplar - is to be displayed at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London as an example of Brutalist architecture, says the BBC.

Brutalism, a movement characterised by exposed concrete in geometric patterns, arose in the 1950s. Robin Hood Gardens was built in 1972 and is due to be demolished and redeveloped.

The section includes two flats, exterior facades and two interior staircases.

A V&A spokesman said no decisions had yet been made on where and how the structure would be displayed.


Reference list

The Guardian (www.guardian.co.uk)

The Independent (www.independent.co.uk)

Daily Mail (www.dailymail.co.uk)

BBC (www.bbc.co.uk)