"You have to watch your back wherever you go now." | Reuters

In North Yorkshire, 16-year-old Alex Williams and a friend were sitting on a park bench having lunch when a random adult male attacked them and threatened to stab them. Alex advised him to leave them alone but when the stranger lurched forward and grabbed him, he went into survival mode and flipped the thug over on his back. Unbeknown to the assailant, Alex was a Jiu Jitsu world champion and well-practised in martial arts.

The attacker swayed to his feet and attacked the teenager again, this time violently biting his ear. Williams defended himself once more, throwing the man to the floor and waiting until defeated, the assailant ran away with an adult male accomplice in tow. The police arrived and Alex was taken to hospital where he had six stitches in his torn ear.

A video was taken of the attack and went viral drumming up more than a million views. The boy’s trainer praised Alex Williams’s cool head and urged other British teens to take up martial arts to defend themselves on Britain’s streets. How charming.

I can only begin to imagine how Alex Williams’s distraught parents felt when the local inept Policemen Plodettes turned up on their doorstep to alert them to the fact that their son had nearly been killed but for his bravery, and that they hadn’t a clue how to find his assailant.

When I talk to London friends about the increase in barbarity in the UK, they nod sagely via Zoom. ‘Oh it’s Lord of the Flies, didn’t you know? Dog eat dog! You have to watch your back wherever you go now. We carry pepper sprays.’

I have never doubted my decision to get the heck out of the UK but the more I hear about the increase in violent crime and random muggings and stabbings, I’m hugely relieved that as a family, we got out while the going was good.

Normally, pre- Covid 19, I would return to the UK for work purposes every six weeks but after 18 months of avoiding the country and using online communication portals for meetings instead, do I need to return ever again? My family live all over the world and I only have my beloved nephew in London (although we’re hoping he’ll loosen ties soon).

There is one huge draw though and that is friends and colleagues, damn them. Ah, how I miss those crazy, fun and brilliant girlfriends and my best male friend in London. I may resist a return to Blighty for some time but I know that my love for my friends will see me reluctantly getting back on a plane some time. All the same, until I summon up the courage to go, engage a trainer in martial arts, plus procure my pepper spray, I’ll bask in the beauty of Mallorca for a little while more.

Emma - love, set and match

What a joy it was to see fresh-faced Emma Raducanu win the US Open and to return triumphant to the UK in so laid-back and understated a way. The talented and modest teenager is such a role model for girls of her age and younger, showing that true grit, talent and determination will so often win through.

When you compare her with all the famed airheads and vacuous, utterly pointless egocentric celebrity clowns, it engenders hope. One can but hope that Emma’s charming and down to earth approach to life and money will be a small catalyst for change in the UK.


The M25 was thrown into chaos by a bunch of supposed ‘eco-protestors’ who disrupted traffic, stopping people getting to urgent hospital appointments, working or going home. Furious motorists even attempted to move the activists bodily from the road but were prevented by the wet and militant police who protectively asked the protestors if they were comfortable and if they needed anything. It’s extraordinary how screwed up Britain has become.

On the one hand we now have an authoritarian, deeply scary totalitarian government and yet it has a laughable woke agenda too just to completely confuse the masses. When I speak to fellow journalists they secretly admit to being banned now from writing anything derogatory about the government or the vaccine roll out and must toe the line for fear of redress. Welcome to China, sorry Britain. I find it sad that the country has spiralled into such chaos and state control. In truth, I’m not sure there’s a way back to the light.

Isolation for leggings

An academy in Leeds isolated a 13-year-old schoolgirl for wearing body-hugging leggings in place of uniform and told her to exchange them for school clothes from the lost property box. She refused and was isolated and finally sent home. Good for the school. Rules are rules. At my husband’s old club in London if you showed up without a tie or jacket you had to wear one from a box of random old clothes.

It was a moot lesson in not breaking rules. They were hideous and the aim was to embarrass you into never doing it again.

My teacher mother always said that uniform was a great leveller and she was right. Many pupils dislike school wear but it means no one can trump anyone else. All are the same in their hideous apparel.

Actually, as a nipper I rather liked my uniform as I just threw it on in the morning and never had to decide what to wear. What’s not to like?