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Viscountess Boudica’s Christmas

December 30, 2020
by the gentle author

Our dearly beloved Viscountess Boudica was evicted from her flat in Bethnal Green in 2016 and moved to Uttoxeter, be we still remember her fondly every Christmas and follow her blog

Let it be said that if anyone in the East End knew how to keep the spirit of Christmas, it was the Viscountess Boudica of Bethnal Green. At this time of year, her tiny flat near Columbia Rd was transformed into a secret Winter Wonderland where the visitor might forget the chill of the gloomy streets outside and enter a realm of magic, fantasy and romance in which the Viscountess held court like a benevolent sprite or fairy godmother, celebrating the season of goodwill in her own inimitable style.

Boudica had already been at work for weeks when I arrived with my camera to capture the Christmas spectacle for your delight, yet she was still putting the finishing touches to her display even as I walked through the door. “You see these bells?” she said, reaching up to add them to the colourful forest of paper decorations suspended from the ceiling, “I bought them in Woolworths  in Tottenham for 45p in 1984. When I think of all the people they have looked down upon – if only these bells could talk, they’ve seen it all!”

Evidence of the season was apparent wherever I turned my eyes, from the illuminated coloured trees that filled each corner – giving the impression that the room was actually a woodland glade – to the table where Boudica was wrapping her gifts and writing cards, to the corner where a stack of festive records awaited her selection, to the innumerable Christmas knick-knacks and figures that crowded every surface, and the light-up reindeer outside in the garden, glimpsed discreetly through the net curtains. “This is thirty years worth of collecting,” she explained, gesturing to the magnificent display enfolding us, “that set of lights is older than I am.”

In common with many, this is an equivocal time for Viscountess Boudica who does not have happy childhood memories of Christmas. “It was hell,” she admitted to me frankly, “We didn’t have any money to buy presents and, in our family, Christmas was always when fights and arguments would break out. The reason I have so many decorations now is to make up for all the years when I didn’t have any.” Yet Boudica remembers small acts of kindness too. “The local shops used to save me their balloons and give me scraps of fabric that I used to make clothes for the kittens in the barn – and that was the beginning of me making my own outfits,” she recalled fondly.

“People should remember what it’s all about,” Boudica assured me, linking her own childhood with the Christian narrative, “It’s about a little boy who didn’t have a home. They should think of others and remember there’s poor people here in Bethnal Green.” Naturally, I asked the Viscountess if she had a Christmas message for the world and, without a second thought, she came to back to me with her declaration –  “Be kind to each other and get rid of discrimination!”

Boudica contemplates her Christmas listening – will it be Andy Williams or Jim Reeves this year?

“Whenever I hang up these bells, I think of all the people they have looked down upon over the years”

Wrapping up her gifts.

Filling her stocking

Nollaig Shona Dhaoibh!

Drawings copyright © Viscountess Boudica

You may also like to read

Viscountess Boudica’s Domestic Appliances

Viscountess Boudica’s Drawings

Viscountess Boudica’s Blog

Viscountess Boudica’s Album

Viscountess Boudica’s Halloween

Viscountess Boudica’s Valentine’s Day

The Departure of Viscountess Boudica

Read my original profile of Mark Petty, Trendsetter

and take a look at Mark Petty’s Multicoloured Coats

Mark Petty’s New Outfits

Mark Petty returns to Brick Lane

8 Responses leave one →
  1. Susan permalink
    December 30, 2020

    I miss her. She has the most wonderful sense of style; I especially love her shoes.

  2. December 30, 2020

    Always love to see the Viscountess! Her Christmas is effortlessly stylish, and exudes olde worlde warmth. She is an inspiration in the dark times!

  3. December 30, 2020

    Nollaig Shona Dhaoibh, Viscountess Boudica!

    As I read in your blog you are not happy in your new surrounding it makes me sad to hear that all these people show a disgusting behaviour and shame on them for making life difficult for you but nevertheless I wish you all the best for 2021.

    +++   EIN FROHES NEUES JAHR 2021  +++  
    +++   A HAPPY NEW YEAR 2021   +++
    +++   UNE BONNE ET HEUREUSE ANNÉE 2021   +++

    Love & Peace

  4. Adele Lester permalink
    December 30, 2020

    Have often wondered how the Viscountess is doing in her new surroundings? Sorry to hear she isn’t happy. Hopefully 2021 will be a better year for her and the world.

  5. Mark. permalink
    December 30, 2020

    She has a blog! Thanks for that.

  6. Micheal Pyner permalink
    December 30, 2020

    Thank you….. beautiful, beautiful images of a beautiful person….. Nollaig Shona agus Athbhliain faoi mhaise na hAthbhliana Boudica…..

  7. Cherub permalink
    December 31, 2020

    I love Boudica’s Christmas trees, they look so colourful and full of cheer in these difficult times.

  8. December 31, 2020

    A very big thank you to thee gentle author for putting thee story of my Christmas past my husband Guido and Christopher and jack kit wright would lyke to wysh everyone in London a very happy new year 2021 and may each and everyone of you stay safe stay 6ft6inches apart we all have one if thee hardest years ever in 2020

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