18 Nov 2009

Completely inspired by John Mortimer's memorial

I emerged from John Mortimer’s memorial Service at London’s Southwark Cathedral, a completely inspiring event – amazing turn out in a sensational location.

There’s been a church there since 606AD. The canon told an American who asked him why he’d built the place so close to the railway!

The music came from Jon Lord, formerly of Deep Purple – hauntingly lovely stuff for flute piano and strings, beautifully played by the Bernardi orchestra.

What a journey Mr Lord must have been on, from Deep Purple to classical beauty, maybe a shorter journey than one supposes.

And John Mortimer present in all but person – his words and those of others read by Edward Fox, Jeremy Irons, Patricia Hodge, Joss Ackland, and Derek Jacobi.

I liked this by Mortimer on getting old:

“The ageing person is not gradual or gentle. It rushes up, pushes you over and runs off laughing. No one should grow old who isn’t prepared to appear ridiculous.”

And given that Mortimer was both lawyer and writer beyond a lot more, I liked today’s theme – “the defence rests”.

I sat behind Paxo and ribbed him for his unmasking by Michael Crick on last night’s Newsnight, as a man who goes shooting with a Tory knight of the shires who objected to Liz Truss as his local Norfolk Tory candidate.

There but for the grace of God go we all. John Mortimer would surely have enjoyed it.



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