27 April 2014

Holly Walsh's top 5 British cultural icons

It's depressing isn't it, that since Shakespeare there's been no-one that even comes close? It's as though British culture peaked in the 1590s, apart from a spike in 1995 with Babylon Zoo's 'Spaceman'. So I put together my own list of British cultural heroes - a list we can all be proud of and rally around as being the best that British culture has got to offer.

[Music cue: Land of Hope and Glory]

5. Victoria Beckham. Is there a better metaphor for the British empire than a woman who has dominated the worlds of fashion, music and publishing despite the fact that no-one asked her to, and she has nothing to offer?

4. The man I saw in Leicester with a neck tattoo saying 'Who are you to judge?' What could be more British than a good point badly made?

3. Pam Ayres, or to give her her original title, Pam Uluru. Britain's true Poet Laureate and a woman who's found more rhymes for teeth than Shakespeare ever did.

2. Jason Scotland-Williams - the man accused of taking a shortcut during the London marathon. I don't think he cheated. He just represented the classic British trait of not admitting he was lost.

1. Benedict Cumberbatch, for his battle against adversity: a man who overcame the stigma of being born into a rich, white family of successful actors, to become a rich, white, successful actor. A man who inspires all of us to be born into white, wealthy families. And as the Government keep reminding us, what could be more British than that?

- Holly Walsh (co-written w/ Jon Hunter), The Now Show, BBC Radio 4, 25 April 2014
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