Anti-Undershaw comments - My thoughts

I've seen a number of articles on line that have been rather anti-Undershaw. However most of these people are missing the point. This was not just a fight about saving a home of one of our country's greatest writers. It was wider than that.

Undershaw Saved

The High Court has overturned the planning permission that would see Undershaw carved up.

It's a WIN!

Now the hard work begins.....

Update 31/5/2012

Many people have been asking what happens now? As I'm not on the inside I cannot answer that but I suggest we let the UPT and other involved parties get on with their tasks. We shall be informed as soon as is appropriate.

Undershaw decision apparently today at 10.30am

Watch this space.

A new reviewing system

I've been much impressed of late with Ross K and his reviews (no doubt due to getting some nice ones from him). As those of you familiar with his reviews will know, he awards from 1 - 6 Napoleons.

I have decided to do something similar. Instead I shall take the next most obvious option and mark in orange pips (up to five naturally).

I have gone back through some of my most recent reviews and added ratings. I shall use the pip system from here on in.

Undershaw - What do we do while we wait?

So, you might possibly be asking, what do we do while we wait for the judge's verdict re Undershaw?

Well the most important thing is that we keep the subject in the public eye. So, in other words, we should not change from how we acted before the Judicial Review took place.

Here are my suggestions:

1) - Tweet the case regularly using hashtag #saveundershaw

2) - Buy my book "An Entirely New Country" - 50% of net royalties are dontated to the UPT links here

3) - Buy "Sherlock's Home" - a collection of articles, stories and poems from fans who are concerned about the house's fate. Amazon (UK) Amazon (US)

4) - Visit the Save Undershaw shop. All proceeds go into the running the awareness campaign

5) - And don't forget......

Ross K Reviews "Close to Holmes"

Legendary YouTube reviewer Ross K reviews my second book Close to Holmes and awards it 5.5 Napoleons.

Check it out.

Next SHSL event

The next big event on the SHSL calendar is the trip down the Thames in the footsteps (or perhaps - wake) of the Aurora.

The Sign of Four is my favourite Sherlock Holmes story so this is something I am looking forward to immensely. See you there if you have booked passage.

Please note: At the recent SHSL AGM it was reported that the event was fully booked.


On Thursday my wife and I attended the 2012 SHSL Annual General Meeting at the National Liberal Club in London.

Points of interest:
  • Tony Lee and myself were elected to the society Council.
  • Bob Ellis became the society's new Chairman
  • The winner of the Tony and Freda Howlett Award 2012 was John Weber for Under the Darkling Sky
We then had a lecture on Music Hall. It nearly fell at the first hurdle due to a lack of tech knowhow in the room.

Can anyone make this thing work?

I've joined the Council

At tonight's Sherlock Holmes Society of London AGM Tony Lee and myself were elected to the Council of the Society.

I shall writer a fuller blog later.

Undershaw Judicial Review Pics

UPDATE: The judge's decision has been reserved and we will find out in a week at the earliest. However it could take until the end of July.

The troops gather
Curly tweets updates
John Gibson - The man who started the UPT
Flying the flag (yours truly third from right in background)
Troop lunch during recess

The scene of battle for Undershaw

Behold - the Royal Courts of Justice. This impressive building houses the High Court where, on Wednesday, the latest round of the battle to Save Undershaw will be fought.

If the fight is lost I'm afraid that Professor Moriarty will need to cede his title of Napoleon of Crime to Waverley Borough Council.

Elementary Trailer - Verdict

Thanks to Youtube, the trailer/documentary for Elementary is doing the rounds.

The thing that screams out for me is that while BBC's Sherlock is clearly written by two people who know the Canon - Elementary is written by people who at best have (or appear to have) only a passing familiarity with it or, and this is arguably worse, have good knowledge of it but have chosen to ignore everything that doesn't suit them. Is this driven by a desire to avoid comparisons with Sherlock (if so mission failed) or a desire to avoid any legal moves from the Sherlock team (after all Steven Moffat did say he'd be watching)?

Whichever it is, the show (based admittedly only on a trailer but a trailer is supposed to make you want more) comes across as a bizarre cross between House and Crocodile Dundee (the latter thanks to the fish out of water element of the - pardon me Sting - 'Englishman in New York' encountering cultural as well as social hurdles.

It looks like it will be entertaining in the same way as RDJ's cinematic Holmes is. People will watch it and enjoy it but they will, at the same time, acknowledge that its link to the source material is, at best, tenuous. Holmes has suffered worse at the hands of screen adapters and will endure this but I think, after Sherlock, we've come to expect more.

Oh, by the way, a tattooed Holmes? Come on, seriously! He wrote a monograph on tattoos. It didn't mean he'd have one.

The Baker Street Babes review An Entirely New Country

The lovely Baker Street  Babes have put finger to keyboard and reviewed my latest book.

Read their review here

MX Publishing release schedule

The following titles are due this month from MX Publishing:

1st May - Holmes Sweet Holmes

7th May - Sherlock Holmes and The Whitechapel Vampire

14th May - The Secret Journal of Dr Watson

21st May - Sherlock Holmes and The Case of The Jacobite Rose (play)

23rd May - Sherlock's Home - The Empty House

28th May - Sherlock Holmes and The Plague of Dracula

Check them out on Amazon or here

A big couple of months

Well I have a busy couple of months from a Sherlockian/Doylean perspective.

In just over 14 days (assuming nothing changes) I shall be popping along to the High Court to witness the Judicial Review which I hope will be a major step on the road to saving Undershaw from redevelopment. People often ask me how I think it will go. To be honest I really have no idea. Fingers crossed though that it goes in favour of the Undershaw Preservation Trust who have battled a long time for this.

The day after sees the annual general meeting of The Sherlock Holmes Society of London which is always an interesting event. This year, as per usual, sees the retirement of two committee members - following the end of their three year terms. I am standing for election to one of these posts this year. I very much hope I'll be elected. In addition the society will be electing a new chairman.

June 16th and 27th see me giving small talks. The first is to the Haslemere Festival as part of their Conan Doyle weekend and the second is a small seminar at Barts Hospital. Tickets to the second event are no longer available but I think tickets to the first event are still to be had.

BAFTA deny Jeremy Brett honour

The BAFTA 4 JB team have announced that BAFTA have declined to award Jeremy Brett a posthumous BAFTA.

In my opinion this is shameful. If the rules don't allow it the rules should be changed:

More here

The "Final" Countdown

Well we have reached the month in which the latest round of the fight to save Undershaw will commence. For long serving veterans of the campaign and raw recruits alike this is a significant month.

In my opinion this is a straight battle between the protectors of history and the seekers of profit even though, perversely, it cannot be fought on that basis.