It became very clear early in lockdown that this was going to be a brutal time for magazines. Even if some newsagents were still open, people weren't routinely passing through and picking up a mag as they did so. Even though my own financial position was under pressure, I made the decision to support the magazines I really enjoy via subscriptions.

And so, this morning, the post arrived with a poodle-killing* "thump", and to my delight, I had three new issues to enjoy.

Here's what arrived, and why I subscribe to them.

Country Walking

Country Walking magazine in the grass

The one of these I've been subscribed to longest. For a long time, this was a kind of outdoor porn for me, giving a glimpse into a life I couldn't quite live. As I'm able to get out and walking with my daughters more, it's become less of an essential read — but I enjoy a couple of the columnists, and am reluctant to unsubscribe just yet.

For

For: Magazine

This is one of those high-quality, high-price, infrequent schedule indie magazines I've become fond of in recent years. (City's proximity to magCulture fed my addiction, but I'll be going cold turkey this autumn, as all my lecturing will be delivered online.)

It's notionally a magazine about people who are making the world a better place, but it's the perfect blend of words, images and design that make it so enjoyable. But that's what a magazine should be, isn't it?

Issue 1 came out a couple of years ago. I loved it and subscribed. Two years on, I got issue 2. Looking forward to sitting down with this one over a good cup of coffee over the weekend.

I don't want to rush it. It might be years before I get another one…

Standart

Standart magazine - an indie magazine for coffee lovers

Standart is one of two coffee-centric magazines I subscribe to. Yes, I'm that much of a coffee snob. The mag redesigned last issue, and looks great. It's a really wide look at the people who produce, sell, brew and consume coffee, with a global scale. An issue always leaves me feeling better informed. And, rather unfortunately given the current circumstances, it often gives me the desire to travel to other cities to experience new coffee shops.

Ah, well.

At least it comes with a great bag of coffee:

A free bag of Origin Coffee Roasters coffee with Standart magazine

* A “real poodle-killer” was a phrase we often used in my Estates Gazette days to describe a really big issue. Back then, it was a perfect-bound weekly, often of quite impressive thickness.