Another Waugh Writer

Another member of the Waugh family has turned to writing. This is Nathaniel Waugh, Evelyn’s grandson and second son of Auberon. According to a 2003 story in the Guardian by Alexander Chancellor, Nathaniel had recently moved to France from Shepherd’s Bush with his family to set up as a shopkeeper in a small town north of Bordeaux:

Nat’s shop, although proudly English, is in this great French tradition. It is bang in the middle of the town’s medieval quarter, only a few yards from the Arcus Germanicus, a perfectly preserved triumphal arch dating from the town’s most glorious period as a provincial capital of the Roman Empire. For what it costs to buy a wretched flat in Hammersmith, Nat is now the owner of a fine, spacious medieval stone building surrounding a courtyard entered from the main street by a broad arch, above which sways a shop sign displaying representations of two quintessentially English products – a pot of Marmite and a bottle of Worcestershire sauce – and the name of the shop, La Perfide Albion.

Nathaniel has now returned to England after 15 years and has written about his experiences in France in The Oldie. In his recent article (“Mon dieu, where is your dignity?”) he explains why the British are so often misunderstood when they travel in France:

…I now find myself marvelling at the exoticism of the English on my return to my native West Country. How is it that the mores and codes found throughout continental Europe appear to have eluded the British? It used to break my heart to see well-meaning British holidaymakers causing offence at every turn, through simple ignorance of the French attachment to form.

Even such mundane matters as how the British dress on holiday and how they walk and talk in public give offence to the French. The full article is available to read on the internet. Nathaniel previously collaborated with his brother Alexander in the script for a musical play Bon Voyage!.

UPDATE (28 November 2017): Dave Lull has kindly sent a link to another article from The Oldie by Nathaniel Waugh describing his life in France (“My life selling Marmite to the French is over”). This is dated 1 May 2017 and has been reprinted in Press Reader where it may now be read.

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