A.S.H. Smyth

A.S.H Smyth is a journalist and radio presenter in the Falkland Islands. He was once selected to play cricket for the national side but couldn’t make it.

Missing in action

‘Missing in action is the worst state to which we can lose a human being,’ avers Commodore (Ret.) Ajith Boyagoda — and he should know. A not especially academic young chap from the hill country, Boyagoda joined the then Ceylonese navy for the glamour of it; progressed fair-to-middlingly; saw Southampton, Suez and South India; and,

Spare a thought for us choral singers during carol season

Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat, and I’m sure you’re all looking forward to a damn fine sing-along at your respective local carol services. Spare a thought, though, at this time of year, for the pros and semi-pros who will, like as not, be charged to fine-tune the outpourings of your festive cheer.

What Afghan soldiers really think – the same as us

‘The NATO Commander in Eastern Afghanistan has said that this year 54 foreign bases have already been closed…’ Last December Channel 4 aired a documentary entitled Billion Dollar Base: Deconstructing Camp Bastion, the predominating ‘takeaways’ from which were a) what phenomenal amounts of money we’d spent on our eight-year operation in and around Helmand Province,

Blessed are the speechmakers?

As the election season finally gets its boots on, office-seeking motor-mouths of every creed and colour would do well to remember the tale of William Henry Harrison, ninth president of the United States of America, who died on this day in 1841, exactly one month after taking office. The ‘pneumonia of the lower lobe of

A day in the life of Britain’s sexiest man

There are, presumably, a great many people who dream about what they will say when the day comes that they get to meet David Gandy – but I have to confess I wasn’t one of them. So when I found myself, six months back, sitting across from him in the ‘interview room’ of the Sun

A reverend at war

This evening – Armistice Eve – Ben Fleetwood Smyth (no relation) and Hugh Brunt will be putting on their annual British Art Music Series concert: this year, in aid of St Paul’s, Knightsbridge. Narrated by Judith Paris, and interspersed with Victorian and Edwardian music from the BAM Consort and the BAM Ensemble, the event will tell

On the road with a long-distance morris dancer

‘I’m morris dancing to Norwich and I need someone to captain my road-crew. You’re the only man for the job. Yours, Tim.’ Tim FitzHigham, Bt. BA Hons. Dunelm. FRGS (all Ret.) is a man so wildly different even Ranulph Fiennes thinks he’s a little crazy. And Sir Ranulph is by no means alone. When Tim

Pullman gives God a break for Easter

The author of His Dark Materials talks to A.S.H. Smyth about the latest episode in the saga in which he turns towards politics — with a nod to The Magnificent Seven along the way Several years ago, Philip Pullman wrote that ‘“Thou shalt not” might reach the head, but it takes “Once upon a time”