A new painting is underway. I’ve already finished one this year, but it’s yet to be unveiled and I won’t be doing so until after the 15th. This new one surprised me though, as I’d expected to be doing nothing but landscapes all year. Then I read about one of my all-time favourite bands The Cult and their imminent new album Hidden City. I listened to the some of the new songs and understood what Astbury meant when he talked about the band’s mission to “defend the beauty.” My daughter is violently exercised about the acceleration of worldwide species decline, and on hearing that the number of big cats left in the wild were almost beyond the point of no return she “called me on my shit” and asked me what I was doing about it. A fair question, seeing as it’s largely my generation that’s overseen this decline and done almost fuck all about it, so the least it seemed I could do was to once again paint one of these awesome specimens as a testament to future generations of what was lost. This will be finished by the end of February when I’ll offer it up for sale, with all proceeds going to wildlife conservation.
This is an article I wrote in 2006, which eventually got subsumed into the manuscript for my never-to-be-published true crime magnum opus The Hangman’s Breakfast. It’s a story I came across while researching Ghost Of A Hurt: The Mystery of Who Put Bella In The Wych Elm. Like that story, it took place in the rural English Midlands during the World War II era, and like the Bella story, it’s one that will never be solved. Charles Walton was murdered by persons unknown in circumstances that do suggest associations with witchcraft and the occult, and these aspects I explored in the article which you download as a PDF here.