Nicky’s Dad Ted Perry MBE

We’ve got a piece of family history for you today on the blog. Here’s a picture of our dear owner (matriarch to the British expats of NYC, unofficial consular-general and shoulder to cry on for these missing home), Nicola Perry with her sister Louise and her dad Ted on the day he received his MBE.

Check out that handbag!

Ted was a truly remarkable man. After a successful career in the music industry, he founded Hyperion Records in 1980, a classical music label that went on to great success. Here’s an excerpt from his obituary in the Guardian:

“Ted Perry, who has died aged 71, was one of the most industrious and admired characters in the recording industry… [Hyperion Records] became one of the most important of independent companies, adopting an adventurous policy entirely inspired by Perry’s intuition as regards making rare repertory popular. Many thought that his enterprise was foolhardy, but right up to his death, he proved them wholly wrong; there was and is a public for the unusual when presented with discernment.”

He was awarded an MBE by the Queen in 1990 for services to music. Let’s see if Nicky will one day follow in his footsteps to Buckingham Palace!

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Independence Day Royal Recap: George III

What with it being Independence Day this week, we thought we’d use our Monday Royal Recap slot to take a look at the last ruling monarch of the US of A: George III. It’s all very tongue and cheek of course and we’re more than happy with our corner of Greenwich Village and a warm Shepherd’s Pie every evening, thank you very much.

The rather dashing King George III

George III was the grandfather of Queen Victoria, and is most famous for being struck down with a mental illness while still on the throne. One common story told how he tried to shake hands with a tree believing it to be the King of Prussia! A film that’s well worth a watch is the marvellous British’The Madness of King George’ made back in 1994. Here’s the trailer:

A few other interesting facts about mad old George are that he fathered 15 children, his favorite hobby was farming and he was the longest reigning monarch up until that point. So that concludes today’s history lesson, which leaves only one more thing to be said: you know what America, you’ve done a lot better off without ’em…. Happy Independence Day!!

Happy Birthday Charles Dickens – 200 Today!

It seems like bumper season for big British events at the moment. Following Accession Day yesterday, it’s the 200th anniversary of one of Blighty’s greatest ever writers, Charles Dickens.

Dear old Mr. Dickens... Happy 200th!

The author of many fine novels (Tale of Two Cities is our favorite), Dickens had a larger impact on London’s image than Paul Auster, Martin Scorcese, Mark Rothko, or even Candice Busnhell did on that of New York. Think of spires, sooty streets, smoke, steam and the banks of the River Thames, and Dickens’ masterful words will have shaped those images.

Grey, grey, grey... The weather is definitely one thing we don't miss...

But let’s not get too cerebral about the old man. While you’re having a celebratory cup of birthday cake (Historically speaking, Victoria Sponge would be perfect, as would anything from Mrs. Beeton), here’s a trailer from the BBC’s Christmas version of ‘Great Expectation’. Beautifully shot and styled, it still had its critics. There were accusations of dumbing down, complaints that Gillian Anderson was too young to play Miss Havisham while some even said that ex-Burberry model Douglas Booth was just too damn hot to play Pip. We’ll let you decide that one for yourself….

Next up, the Diamond Jubilee & the London Olypmics… Bring on summer!

Tea & Sympathy is ‘The Hottest Spot in Town’: The Times (UK)

We’ve been rummaging through our scrap books, and continuing our vintage theme from yesterday’s post, we have another ‘oldie but a goody for you’. A great description of the New York of yore (we’ve lost the date, but late nineties surely), we’re glad to be name checked as the ‘hottest spot in town’. Jonathan Miller, you are welcome back anytime!

The Best of Food Delivery in New York: The New York Times

Here’a a proper blast from the past. The New York Times, back in 1997, praising the wonders of food delivery in NYC. And who’s highlighted first, as pioneers of this great trend? Us, of course! “Thoroughly, almost campily British,” what will they say next?…

While New York has evidently come a long way since this article, let’s not forget the simple joy – especially in weather like this – of having your dinner brought steam hot to your door. So go on, stay in tonight and order in: 212-989-9735.