Escape from Singapore

Escape from Singapore

Escape from Singapore Our December-January edition of Old Africa magazine has a story by Barbara Dods. She tells about growing up in Nairobi while her father, Arthur James Scott Hutton was the architect overseeing the building of Kenya’s Government House (which later became State House) and the Law Courts in the late 1920s and into the 1930s. After finishing those jobs, Arthur Hutton took a job in Singapore. He was there when the Japanese attacked in World War 2 and his family was in Australia. He had a narrow escape when the Japanese overwhelmed Singapore. For weeks Barbara Dods and her mother and sisters didn’t know what had happened to their father. Barbara has a copy of the letter her Father wrote to her Mother describing his escape from Singapore. We had planned to use it as a sidebar article to accompany Barbara’s memories of growing up in Nairobi. But we ran out of space. So here’s the letter. And if it piques your interest, be sure to get a copy of Old Africa issue 62 where you can read Barbara’s story about her Nairobi childhood.   Written by Arthur James Scott Hutton at the Taj Mahal Hotel, Bombay, 11th March 1942. Margaret My Darling, I have not dared to tell you of my whereabouts before this but I am hoping that mail from Bombay will reach you in Perth. You will have received my Bombay cable informing you that I was free, safe and well and you may have had official notification from Ceylon of my safety before my cable. I felt your anxiety on my behalf from...
New from Old Africa books…The Sultan’s Spymaster

New from Old Africa books…The Sultan’s Spymaster

 The Sultan’s Spymaster by Judy Aldrick is launching with 4 events and book signings starting this Saturday the 26th.  We hope you can attend one of the launches.   Book Signing In Between the Lines book shop  Village Market, Nairobi Saturday, September 26, 2015 2-7 PM Refreshments available   Launch Event and signing National Museums of Kenya, Ford Hall Nairobi Sunday, September 27, 2015 2-4 PM Refreshments available   Launch Event and signing Fort Jesus hosted by Friends of Fort Jesus Tuesday, September 29, 2015 7-9 PM Refreshments available   Launch Event and signing The Secret Garden Restaurant Emerson Spice Hotel Kiponda, Zanzibar Saturday, October 3rd, 2015 7-9 PM Spiced tea and snacks will be served The Sultan’s Spymaster tells the story of  Peera Dewjee, an Ismaili merchant who crossed from India to Zanzibar as a boy. Later he became Sultan Barghash’s barber and valet, where he became a confidant to the Sultan and a trusted advisor. Peera Dewjee acted behind the scenes during momentous events in the history of Zanzibar and East Africa – the closing of the slave markets and imperial expansion by Germany and Great Britain.  The Sultan’s Spymaster displays 16 pages of rare photographs from Zanzibar as well as numerous old line drawings in the text of the book itself.  For those of you who can’t attend any of the launches, the book should also be available to order online on Amazon by the 26th of September. We will send out another announcement with details on how to...
Salama Fikira Derby – April 12, 2015 – #SFkenyaderby2015

Salama Fikira Derby – April 12, 2015 – #SFkenyaderby2015

The Third Annual Salama Fikira Kenya Derby 2015 For the third consecutive year, Salama Fikira will be sponsoring the Kenya Derby on Sunday 12th April 2015 at the Ngong Racecourse in Nairobi, Kenya. The Kenya Derby is the biggest event of its kind in East Africa’s horseracing circuit. This year will mark the 110th anniversary of horse racing in Kenya. “Salama Fikira is delighted to sponsor the Kenya Derby and looks forward to an exhilarating day celebrating 110 years of horse racing in Kenya. The sport has earned a lot of respect and reached an important milestone.” said Salama Fikira CEO Conrad Thorpe OBE. “By supporting this classic event, Salama Fikira hopes to grow the occasion into one of the primary sporting and social events on the Kenyan calendar.” The Salama Fikira Kenya Derby is a show of world class horse racing with activities for both adults and children. Gates open at 11.30am. Sub sponsors joining us on the day include, The Star Newspaper, Etihad Airways, dusit D2, Bridging the World Travel, Seedcol Global Shipping & Bob Morgan Security. Signature cocktails and delicious food will be provided by Brew Bistro, who once again are supporting the event. Nairobi, Kenya 25 March 2015 About Salama Fikira Group Salama Fikira is an African Risk Management Consultancy headquartered in Nairobi, with regional offices throughout east, central and west Africa. The company supports multi-sector industries in the land and maritime dimensions, creating business assurance in complex and difficult environments for private, corporate and government entities. Contact: For more details, please contact: T: (Ke) +254 20 269 3846 E: derby@salamafikira.com W: www.salamafikira.com    ...
Poison of the Arrow by Iain MacDonald

Poison of the Arrow by Iain MacDonald

Available now from Amazon.com and Amazon.co.uk Poison of the Arrow: A Tale of Quest & Survival by Iain MacDonald The world is changing. Kigusu the magnificent elephant whose great tusks and cunning have become whispered legend around the smoky fires of the African bush knows this; the walls are closing in on his once expansive empire. He carries musket scars from Arab slave traders, arrowheads hurled by wily African hunters and bullet wounds from pale hunters from across the seas. He has defeated and outsmarted them all. Now he searches for peace and quiet in the dense thickets of the Yatta Plateau and the Chyulu hills. As withered and wise as the old bull is, Muthambo, a great hunter of the Wakamba tribe, matches the elephant in scars, wrinkles and bushcraft. Muthambo struggles to maintain his traditional way of life and pass this heritage down to his grandson, all the while dodging the wildlife department, thieving neighbours and informants. He is forced to risk all when his wayward son, who has turned from the old ways, falls prey to the deadly allure of the fast paced city life of Nairobi, Kenya’s burgeoning capital. Poison of the Arrow is a poignant look into a world of vanishing traditions, culture and...
World War I Battlefield Tour – Maktau Cemetery

World War I Battlefield Tour – Maktau Cemetery

World War I Battlefield Tour Taita Taveta August 2014 Part two Maktau Railway Station and Cemetery In August 2014 I travelled with my daughter Malindi and a group of Old Africa readers on a tour of World War I battlefield sites. James Willson acted as our guide. After looking at the Commonwealth Graves Cemetery in Voi on the afternoon of our trip to Taita, we spent the night at Taita Salt Lick Lodge. The next morning we headed on the rough road to Taveta. Our first stop was at the railway station at Maktau. Maktau developed into a large military camp during the first two years of World War I. At the beginning it had to be supplied with water carried on the heads of porters. Eventually a rail line was built all the way to Taveta to carry troops and supplies. The railway station at Maktau continued to serve Taveta until the line ceased operation a number of years ago.  We walked along the rusty rail lines and James Willson stopped several times to examine the imprints on the sides of the rails to show they had been laid back in the time of the Great War.  Our path led us to a well-kept cemetery with a stone monument in the middle with inscriptions in Arabic and some Indian languages. This cemetery had been set aside to honor the fallen troops from India. It didn’t have individual headstones like the cemetery in Voi. We stood and listened as James told us how the war progressed in its early stages and the sacrifice made by troops from India who...