Apsley House & Book shops

On Wednesday met up with Susan Jenkins, curator of Apsley House, that remarkable home of the Duke of Wellington, also known as No 1 London: it is a wonderful rich confection, curiously masculine and full of wonderful paintings. It is probably the best Regency interior you can visit in London. The family still have apartments there.

As we prepare to move our offices I find myself glancing at old volumes before they are packed away; there is so much to distract anyone with any curiosity.

I used to dream of being a book dealer, but I would have spent all my time reading and not sold much I expect. I am saddened by how many of the cranky old bookshops I loved as a boy have disappeared. What do people do on wet afternoons in town these days: get wet and spend too much money I expect. Thank goodness for our man on the Cambridge market stall. I got a great H.E.Bates last week, read it all by midnight!

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