Country Life 1 May 2024

Country Life 1 May 2024 looks at the incredible local variety to be seen across Britain, from the landscapes to the language, and from Badminton to beer.

Here’s a look at some of what you’ll find inside.

Local distinctiveness

  • Kate Green and Agnes Stamp take a geological tour of our islands to dig out what makes them special; granite country, chalk downland, The Fens, Wealden clay, Welsh slate, Yorkshire mill-stone grit, The Highlands and Cotswold limestone
  • Matthew Rice sketches the myriad architectural styles
  • Mark Diacono rubs the soil between his fingers
  • Victoria Marston wraps her tongue around dialects
  • Harry Pearson downs a pint or three of local ale
  • And finally, the ultimate quiz

Et in Arcadia ego

For Constable, the countryside was a lover, for Samuel Palmer, it offered an escape from the real world and for Paul Nash it held an inescapable lure. Michael Prodger examines the effect of British landscapes on art

The Duchess of Marlborough’s favourite painting

The ceramicist chooses an evocation of her childhood

Recommended videos for you

Let us now praise the Nanny State

We should embrace Mary Poppins-esque common sense, believes Carla Carlisle

The legacy

Kate Green salutes the 10th Duke of Beaufort on the eve of the Badminton Horse Trials that set British riders on their gallop to three-day-eventing victory

Cometh the ice men

Don’t cast those jumpers out just yet, advises Lia Leendertz


Get ready for the warmer weather with Amelia Thorpe’s pick of outdoor furniture

London Life

  • Royal photographs
  • All you need to know about cloth, cheese and Trafalgar Square
  • Jack Watkins tells the tale of Covent Garden
  • Adam Hay-Nicholls relishes the roar of engines in Savile Row

Up hill and down dale

Kathryn Bradley-Hole finds that formality is leavened by verve and personality in the gardens of Dalemain at Penrith, Cumbria, where the blue poppies bloom

Kitchen garden cook

Melanie Johnson gathers bunches of fresh watercress

Native herbs

Unmistakeable in scent, versatile in use, wild garlic is a forager’s dream, but don’t let dairy cows graze it, warns Ian Morton


  • Mark Hedges escapes to our nearest paradise, the Isles of Scilly
  • Tom Parker Bowles feasts on a proper club sandwich
  • Pamela Goodman dares to swim the Dordogne

The good stuff

Hetty Lintell takes her time choosing the latest wonderful watches unveiled in Geneva

And much more