Check points for Berlin
The appeal of the German capital; the Red Rose county blooms; cross dressing fun in Sydney and Wilde about Reading
But there is more. The banks of the Ribble near Roman Ribchester are beautiful and afford numerous delightful picnic spots. Travel a little further afield to visit 14th-century Samlesbury Hall, one of the best half-timbered halls in England. Our hidden countryside has some of the most varied and delightful scenery in this country. Banish the image of industrial towns. EILEEN WALSH
What a drag
We’re going to a drag show! Shock horror – the last thing I wanted to do. On a visit to Sydney to see my daughter, and four of her girlfriends from university, I was introduced to the highlights of this wonderful city – but a drag show?
What a fabulous night. Like your correspondent in Broken Hill (“On track for a night to remember”, October 1), I was completely mesmerised and enjoyed it so much. The costumes were fabulous, the music and songs pretty near the bone, but I laughed and the girls laughed at me, a 60year-old lost in the event. If you get a chance to go – go! ANNE TEBBUTT
Paris may have a new exhibition about Oscar Wilde (“Take a walk on the Wilde side in Paris”, October 1), but you don’t have to go as far as France.
Snap unhappy inCosta Rica
Butterflies the size of your hand, birds of paradise flitting through cloud forests, your article on Costa Rica (“The small nation with a big heart”, October 1) brought back memories of this amazing country... and of the hotel where we stayed.
As we sipped margaritas on the sun terrace I spied a toucan in a nearby tree. Reading Prison currently has a fantastic show featuring the great writer, though you will have to be quick as it ends on October 30. Inside: Artists and Writers in Reading Prison features Wilde prominently as he is the prison’s most famous inmate, having written both “The ballad of Reading Gaol” and “De Thrilled I pointed it out to other guests. No one even blinked. They were far too busy gazing into each other’s eyes. This hotel – the Lost Iguana Resort and Spa – we soon discovered, was one for honeymooners.
Our bedroom overlooked the rainforest and was equipped with lovely rustic furniture. My husband rested his camera on a gnarled wooden shelf. From the opposite corner I Profundis” based on his experiences there.
In the large prison chapel, a sculpture by the artist Jean-Michel Pancin places the original door to Wilde’s cell on a plinth which matches the dimensions of the room he was kept in. Marlene Dumas has painted Wilde, Bosie and others who fell watched transfixed, as with gathering momentum, the camera slid along the shelf and crashed into pieces on the parquet floor.
We departed early next morning, driving down the hotel’s long drive. As we rounded a corner a great curassow strolled casually across our path. Breathless with excitement, I reached for the camera but… I could only sit and stare. WENDY OSBORN WINS A £250 RAILBOOKERS VOUCHER from grace, and there are the meagre books he was allowed. The building itself is an architectural gem designed by George Gilbert Scott. However, you sense it would not have been delightful to be incarcerated in its tiny cells or cramped wings which were in use until 2013. CHRIS ALLEN