In recognition of the agritechno element that runs through the band of commentators to my blog, I give you the diesel oil filler cap from a Field Marshall tractor. I seem to remember from my sojourn on Dartmoor that Field Marshalls were started by the alarming practice of shoving a flaming piece of oily rag into a hole in the side of the engine cover. But just look at the uncompromising casting of these letters and the unbelievably tactile nature of the finger grips. It's the sort of talisman that I would like to keep in a capacious trouser pocket, screwing it into the material when having to account for my actions (or lack of them) at the bank, or whilst queuing in the cattle pen down at the post office. I've loved Field Marshalls ever since I had Dinky Toy No 301 in bright orange with its brown overalled and capped driver that reminded me so much of my farming brother, and I think it was this tractor that also first gave me the notion that brand names could be remarkably clever. Much later the Dartmoor tractor was secretly renovated by the owner's son so that it could be the centre piece of his father's 80th birthday. He drove it across an impossibly steep field with a big pile of balloons soaring up from the back of his seat, both of them looking every inch the Field Marshall.
I am a designer, writer and photographer who spends all his time looking at England, particularly buildings and the countryside. But I have a leaning towards the slightly odd and neglected, the unsung elements that make England such an interesting place to live in. I am the author and photographer of over 25 books, in particular Unmitigated England (Adelphi 2006), More from Unmitigated England (Adelphi 2007), Cross Country (Wiley 2011), The Cigarette Papers (Frances Lincoln 2012), Preposterous Erections (Frances Lincoln 2012) and English Allsorts (Adelphi 2015)