Great Ormond Street Hospital is a British treasure. Founded 160 years ago by Dr Charles West to look after sick children, it has become the pre-eminent hospital of its type in the world. Any parent, consciously or subconsciously, is grateful simply knowing it exists. It is a source of pride. However, it needs money to constantly update its facilities and care for the stricken. So it was that I found myself at a charity shoot at the Royal Berkshire Shooting School.
The school has raised in excess of £3 million for the hospital in the past 15 years, a source of pride for the shooting community, which raises so much for so many good causes. The Berkshire school alone supports Help for Heroes, the Red Cross and the GWCT, among others.
But pride in being British didn’t stop there. During the day, the Red Arrows burst into the skies above us, adding their own glamour, skill and bravery. The team has become an institution and pulls at our heartstrings by flying 6ft apart at 450mph. It’s a feat that makes us slap our neighbours on the back, just for the sake of being alive and British. In this year that has seen such patriotic fervour, it might be time to reflect on just how lucky we all are.
* Subscribe to Country Life and save £1 per issue