All images that appear on www.oliverthornton.com have been hand illustrated by Oliver, using a blend of mixed media.

For prints and more information contact bygonebritstyle@oliverthornton.com

Lady Millie Montgomerie-Moore is a jazz-hound with a penchant for French 75s.  She lives in Du Cane Court, Balham, London and has one of those fabulously modern marriages. 

Her husband, Roger, an odd little fellow who's family line hails from a questionable bunch of Norman barbarians, throws the most deliciously depraved little shindigs with the most exclusive of guest lists.  So exclusive, in fact, you're likely to find yourself the only one invited.  It's all very hush hush, you know, one of those wonderfully private in-clubs, but lore has it that should you be willing, Lord and Lady will perform an elaborate ceremony whereby his ancestors pass from beyond the grave, adopting flesh and bone through the very couple themselves.  Their inner savages are set free, tearing off your clothes and rolling you between the sheets quicker than you can say Montgomerie-Moore.  At least, that's what we've heard tell.

Born Rodney Hart, Chloe Babeux is six feet, two inches, of drop dead gorgeous woman, of which at least six feet must be all legs.

 

Growing up she'd been sure of two things;  firstly, that she was a female born into the wrong body and secondly, that she would become the world's most celebrated supermodel.

A year after becoming the woman she was always destined to be, her dreams of a modelling career came to fruition.  In a shoot for British Vogue, she climbed Mount Everest wearing a pair of six inch stilettos, in a charity expedition raising awareness for an under represented community of feminist Flappers.  Upon reaching the summit, she stripped to her birthday suit and was decorated with a covering of live snails by a Latvian lesbian named Inga, her tour guide and sometime lover.

 

The images shot her to super-stardom and no gastropods were hurt in the process.

When the Sultan of Istal-Aj sent a telegram requesting I visit and bring along famed American aviator, Dorothy Aimes, it couldn't have come at a better time. Blighty was suffering from a rather soggy summer and an expedition to dryer climes seemed like a terribly good idea.⠀

The Sultan’s private jet made for a nifty ride and apart from a red carpet of the deepest pile, a thousand bejeweled dancers shaking their way across the airfield and a host of trained birds singing a catalog of local folk song, nothing seemed too out out of the ordinary as we exited the aircraft. ⠀

Of course, in hindsight, such a welcome might have raised suspicion that the 94 yr old Sultan was a fan of the celebrity high flyer, and a rather over zealous one at that, but I wouldn’t have thought the old boy had it in him. He was one of those handbag types, you know, the sort you might confuse for a thrice cured, stone baked man-clutch. So it came as something of a surprise to witness the Sultan drop to his knees and beg Ms. Aimes to be his wife.⠀

“Think of it,” he cajoled, “Everything you see from the Forever Mountains to the Great Lake could be yours, if only you’ll agree to becoming my Sultana?" ⠀
"Sultana?" Miss Aimes hollered, "ain't that some kinda moldy raisin?⠀

Up until the arrival of Mr. Evans as head gardener, Nanny was known for being quite the battle-axe.  Coming highly recommended from a grand estate in Carmarthenshire, he settled in well and nothing seemed out of the ordinary.  Until, that is, Doctor Harris was summoned, past midnight, to dress the horticulturist's bottom, as red and tender as a side of veal under the mallet.  Upon enquiry, Nanny explained that she had just gotten into bed that same evening, when Mr. Evans had unexpectedly knocked on her door wearing full schoolboy garb.  As quite the naughtiest little boy in the county, he was seeking a discipline most devious and wondered if Nanny might enjoy helping to administer said punishment?

 

Within the year, Mr. Evans and Nanny were wed and love blossomed within her like the thawing of winter into spring.  Never a disapproving word passed her lips again, unless, of course, Mr. Evans requested it, which was most Friday evenings after sitting down to Gardeners Question Time on the wireless.

 

The Bygone Brit was hailed as one of the greatest Hamlets to have ever graced the stage.  At least Nanny said so. 

 

From Cook to Countess, everyone from the big house made their way to the village hall and took their seats with baited breath.  A hushed rapture fell upon the crowd and soon everyone had quite forgotten about the lingering smell of mothballs which clung to the vermillion drapes.

 

Too soon the performance was over and everyone was on their feet, cheering for an encore.  But it wasn't to be.  The actress playing Lady Macbeth had gone into an early labour during a particularly impassioned delivery of the infamous line "out damn spot" and The Bygone Brit was already rushing her to hospital in his nippy little Atalanta sports car.  And still the audience chanted for more, pounding their feet against the floor, all but charging the stage.

Thankfully, although Tommy Dalton had strummed a somewhat lacklustre madrigal during Act Three, the six fingered lute player was hiding a secret talent on the ivories and saved the night by joining everyone in a rousing rendition of Fanlight Fanny, The Frowzy Nightclub Queen.