Country Life 22 November 2023

Country Life 22 November 2023 goes wild camping on Exmoor, the plight of the setter and looks at the chaos that surrounds rural development rules.

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

Betty, Belle and other stories

Camping novice James Fisher takes a Land Rover Defender and goes wild in the isolation and beauty of Exmoor National Park

Clarity not carte blanche

A Domesday book of Britain’s landscape is needed to protect our precious, shrinking country-side, argues Simon Jenkins

Stirring the pot

Grab a spoon! Stir-up Sunday is almost upon us, but only stir your Christmas-pudding mixture clockwise, warns Neil Buttery

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Game, setter, match

Matthew Dennison meets the advocates of the irrepressible, free-spirited English setter, for many, the ultimate working dog

As hard as nails

The mighty and mysterious hornbeam is the muscular iron-wood of our ancient forests, as Vicky Liddell discovers

Cure and simple

The time has come for British charcuterie to shine, says Tom Parker Bowles, as he savours the flavour of our air-dried sausages

Gavin Plumley’s favourite painting

The author and cultural historian selects a vibrant Glasgow Boys work that lifts his winter mood

Classicism in the Deccan

Anuradha S. Naik explains how local craftsmanship underpinned the restoration of the former British Residency in Hyderabad, India

Native breeds

Kate Green profiles the historic, handsome Blackface, a breed that accounts for one-third of the British sheep population

The good stuff

Hang on in there, says Hetty Lintell, as she picks out some eye-catching decorations to adorn the Christmas tree


Arabella Youens marvels at the stylish new kitchen of a Mayfair pied-à-terre and Amelia Thorpe offers joyful ideas to add a touch of magic to the festive table

The devil is in the detail

From Satan cutting Devil’s Dyke to Merlin hefting Stonehenge, Susan Owens reveals the rich folklore of our ancient places

Devoted to daphne

John Hoyland’s stand-out star among winter-scented plants is the colourful daphne, with its bewitching, beguiling aroma hanging heavy in the colder air

Kitchen garden cook

Melanie Johnson celebrates the mild and sweet Savoy cabbage

Time and tide wait for no avocet

John Lewis-Stempel discovers desolation and beauty in equal measure as he strides across the Thames estuary in Kent

And much more.