Niall Gooch

Niall Gooch is a writer who has appeared in the Catholic Herald and UnHerd.

Walthamstow FC and the contradiction of William Morris

In 1884, William Morris gave a lecture to the Hampstead Liberal Club with the title of ‘Useful Work Versus Useless Toil’. His remarks were typically damning of what he saw as the crude philistinism of Victorian capitalism with its mass production of fripperies and of what Marxists call the alienation of labour – the psychological

Does cricket suffer from ‘institutional racism’?

What a strange document the Independent Commission on Equity in Cricket (ICEC) has produced, in its ‘Holding up a mirror to cricket’ report. Rambling, explicitly political, antagonistic and poorly-argued, it ignores some obvious explanations for the ills it discusses, and fixates on irrelevancies. The authors situate their conclusions within the world of intersectionality and other

Can the spiritual element of the coronation survive?

Almost as soon as Charles III acceded to the throne last September, we began to hear whispers and speculation about what exactly his coronation would look like. Many of these stories were alarming to traditionally-minded people. The King wants a slimmed-down ceremony, with less flummery and fewer fancy costumes, insisted those ever-available knowledgeable insiders. Others

The problem with holding Iftar in Manchester Cathedral

During Ramadan, which began last week, sunset finds observant Muslims taking their iftar, a ceremonial breaking of the rigorous fast, involving specific prayers. Often this is done as a community. Pictures of mosques hosting iftar bring to mind the parish festivities which were a common feature of pre-Reformation England, before the Protestants decided that attendees

The tragic decline of political rhetoric

After the first regular BBC TV broadcasts in 1930, it took the House of Commons 60 years to agree to televise its proceedings. Proposals to do so were discussed on a regular basis from the 1960s onwards, but repeatedly rejected; as late as 1985 the idea was voted down by 275 to 263. Not until

Boris is no conservative

The current Tory breakdown is all the more remarkable given how quickly it has happened. As recently as last September they led comfortably in the polls. Keir Starmer was widely derided as an ineffectual centrist bumbler with no charisma. At the start of this parliament, in early 2020, the Tories looked invincible, holding an 80-seat

How to waste an 80-seat majority

Cast your mind back to Channel 4’s election night programme. The 2019 exit poll results flash up on screen. Realising the size of the Tory majority, hosts Krishnan Guru-Murthy and comedian Katherine Ryan, along with pundits Amber Rudd and Tom Watson, all look crestfallen: the Conservatives had won and Brexit was secured.  However, nearly two