To Orwell Today,

Dear Jackie,

You and your site have rekindled my Orwell flame and I am absolutely binging on dear old George, re-reading things and reading things I have not read before. I have watched the first half of this documentary biography, which was made when many people who knew Orwell were still alive. Here's the link just in case you haven't found it yet:


(Rare portrait documentary of George Orwell which was originally broadcast by the BBC in 1984. A film introduction to the writer's life and work, using archival material, interviews and views of the places where he lived. Almost 2 hours in length this documentary contains a wide variety of interviews with important people in the life of Eric Arthur Blair (George Orwell). Voice-over in Dutch, the rest in the original English language...)

I was in Wigan only a few weeks ago. My godfather had a factory there, making clothes. My dad was a customer (the family business was a clothing shop) and this chap became a crony and eventually my godfather, but he was 'posh' and a million miles away from the Wigan that Orwell saw, though doubtless some of his workers (all women) would have been from that world. Wigan's heavy industry, grime, and mines have all long gone now and you would hardly know they ever existed, unless you went to the Wigan Pier museum, (sorry, heritage centre!). One beautiful souvenir of the mining industry is a series of lakes, I think the locals call them flashes, formed where the mines have caused the land to subside. These are very rich in birdlife, plants, and fish, I believe.

I am visiting your site very frequently and spending hours reading things on it, even though I normally do not like reading on screen. What a find! Thanks again.

Peter Jones

Greetings Peter,

It seems you're on a voyage of discovery to Orwell -- and so glad ORWELL TODAY is part of that journey.

Thanks for the link to that fantastic BBC documentary -- I hadn't yet made the find. It's great the way it interviews people -- in 1984 -- who knew Orwell forty and fifty years previously -- including from his days in Wigan and in Spain during their civil war. I'll post it on ORWELL TODAY to share with other readers.

All the best,
Jackie Jura

WALT WHITMAN/PAUL POTTS & ORWELL (Peter met Orwell's friend Paul Potts in London after the war)

COMMUNISTS ENSLAVE BRITISH FREE PRESS (Peter is writing a booklet about freedom of the press while experiencing consistent, continuous, totally waterproof censorship)

CRYSTAL SPIRIT ORWELL BBC FILM (Peter rode his bicycle on a pilgrimage to Jura inspired by the 1984 BBC film "Orwell The Crystal Spirit")

Jackie Jura
~ an independent researcher monitoring local, national and international events ~