UK economy as Brexit approaches

The jury is still out about how much economic damage Brexit will do to the UK – and to the EU. Pre-referendum predictions about an imminent deep recession seem, at present, to be misplaced, though it’s early days yet.

What’s showing on the UK 1801 chart is Solar Arc Sun square the 8th house Mars, exact in about two weeks, but whose influence was probably soaked up in the run-up with the late June referendum. There’s still Solar Arc MC square the UK Mars in a year’s time which might create a few shocks in the City of London and financial businesses, since 8th house is investment, banking and foreign trade. Tr Uranus will trine the 11th house Saturn again in March/April 2017 for the final time, which does point to a new direction for the country and constitutional changes. There are a couple of major Moon influences – tr Pluto opposition the 10th house Moon in 2017/18; and Solar Arc Moon will oppose Saturn in 2019. That sounds, amongst other things, like a stressed and unhappy population, though it could also be to do with rulership (HM Queen) and the legislature (Westminster).

The Bank of England chart, 27 July 1694 (I can’t work out whether that’s OS or NS but I’m assuming GC) – has Solar Arc Jupiter square the Mars opposition Neptune this year and Solar Arc square Mars and Neptune in 2017. That Mars Neptune was being activated when George Soros broke the Bank in 1992 and the UK exited the ERM in a hurry. It suggests an over-confident high, followed by a sharp drop. And tr Saturn will start to hard aspect the BoE Uranus in Nov/Dec this year, then continue on to hard aspect Venus, Mars, Neptune from Jan 2017 till late in the year. So there may be more obvious wobbles once the Brexit mechanism is put into process.

Mark Carney, Governor of the Bank of England, 16 Mar 1965, may be evincing serene calm at the moment, but he’s more rattled than he appears. Tr Neptune is conjunct his Saturn until Jan 2017 and tr Saturn will square his Uranus, Pluto, Mars (Moon) through this Oct/Nov, moving on to square his Venus Sun in 2017; and tr Neptune also opposes his Uranus Pluto and Mars in 2017/18 – so there’s a fair amount of panic and uncertainty beneath his unruffled demeanour.

The FTSE 250, 12 Oct 1992, which is the better indicator for domestic businesses, is under some pressure through 2017/18 with tr Pluto square the Sun, though the chart is also fairly stressed at the moment through the autumn and the index is not showing many signs of plummeting.

The EU and ECB (European Central Bank) do have more problems facing them than Brexit, namely bad loans in several countries and a stagnant EU economy. The ECB, 1 June 1998, has tr Saturn square tr Neptune hitting on the Gemini Sun from now till early 2017 and a really tough slog through 2017 from tr Pluto trine Saturn.

The Telegraph today said: “Large parts of the eurozone are slipping deeper into a deflationary trap despite negative interest rates and one trillion euros of quantitative easing by the European Central Bank, leaving the currency bloc with no safety buffer when the next global recession hits.” Which it probably will when the Saturn Pluto conjunction turns up in 2019.

The EU, 31 Dec 1957 11pm chart, certainly suffered a shock this year from Brexit with Solar Arc Uranus square the Sun exactly on cue; and look to be facing their worst meltdown around 2019 and in 2021/2023 – with 2019 seeing a dead-halt Solar Arc MC conjunct Pluto and a devastating Solar Arc Pluto conjunct their 2nd house financial Neptune in 2019, when tr Uranus is also opposing the EU Neptune bringing high anxiety about the economy. Then Solar Arc Mars squares the EU 8th house Moon and opposes the EU Uranus in 2021. By that time tr Uranus has moved into their 8th house of business finances, aiming to conjunct the Moon and square the EU Uranus with Solar Arc Neptune conjunct the EU Sun by 2023.

Tr Saturn will conjunct the UK, EU and their composite Sun in December 2018 which can indicate a separation though sometimes with tr Saturn it occurs in the aftermath.


Marks & Spencer – swampy times



Marks & Spencer, one of the UK’s oldest stores, selling clothes and food, have had an up and down time since 2000, with this year’s fashion sales well down. Established on 20 May 1884, it was listed on 17 June 1926.

The 1884 chart looks lack lustre this year and in 2017 with tr Neptune square the Saturn, so confusion and uncertainty. There’s a lift coming in 2018 with tr Uranus square Jupiter; and a complete reorganisation in 2020 with tr Pluto trine Uranus.

The 1926 chart has much the same with a ‘shock’ Solar Arc Uranus conjunct Sun this year; and really droopy Solar Arc Neptune conjunct Saturn late 2017, covering several months. Plus an uplift in 2018. So muddles and guddles ahead, but nothing terminal.

Gene & Gilda – a tragic love affair




Gene Wilder’s great and sad romance was comedian and actress Gilda Radnar, whom he met in 1981, married three years later, and then in 1986 she was diagnosed with cancer from which she died in 1989.

Born 28 June 1946, she was a Sun Cancer with Moon Gemini/Cancer with a charming Venus Pluto in Leo; while he was a Sun Gemini, Moon Aquarius so it wasn’t an intuitively good match. Though his Venus in Cancer was conjunct her Sun which would be affectionate. Her Pluto was opposition his Moon and in her memoir she said she made it her full-time job to talk him into marrying her, so that would fit with her seducing him into staying close. Her Jupiter was in his 5th so she would lift his confidence and be a bright spark for him. But her Saturn in Cancer squared his Uranus and her Uranus was conjunct his Sun – so there would be some tensions since both were highly individualistic personalities. Though a fast-moving, varied lifestyle would soak some of that up. His Saturn in Aquarius opposed her Venus Pluto, which would, without the crisis of her health, have proved problematic at some point.

Their relationship chart had an illusory composite Sun square Neptune but the Sun also squared Jupiter, so it would enable them to live within a positive dream bubble. Neptune was also sextile the composite Venus which in turn was probably square the composite Moon which says much the same. Neptune was trine Uranus, sextiling onto Venus – so it would be a creative and quirky love affair.

The composite Saturn was trine Mars which can suggest an unequal balance, one gives more than the other. Though again her illness would demand sacrifice.

It wouldn’t be seamless unless Neptune enveloped them in a haze of bliss. It’s difficult to extrapolate how much the relationship chart somehow ‘knew’ about her illness. Without it, there would have been problems in the longer term. The wedding chart of 18 September 1984 was very Neptunian as well – Neptune sextile Venus, square Sun and opposition Moon.

His two great working partnerships were with Mel Brooks and Richard Pryor. Mel Brooks had the same birthday as Gilda so his Cancer Sun was conjunct Gene’s Venus and Mel’s Jupiter Moon were conjunct Gene’s MC and in his 10th – so a good career fit. Richard Pryor’s Sagittarius Sun was on Gene’s Descendant so a good partnership.

Mel Gibson – back into the fray




Just as Mel Gibson attempts to claw back his tarnished reputation with a well-received new movie, Hacksaw Ridge, another story emerges from radio jock Glenn Beck that he recently blamed ‘Jewish people’ for stealing an early copy of his previous film, The Passion of Christ, to smear him as an anti-Semite. If true, he never learns, even 10 years sober.

This movie about Desmond Doss, the first conscientious objector to receive a Medal of Honour for helping wounded soldiers during the Battle of Okinawa in WW11 releases first in Australia on 3rd November, which has the tr Mars in Capricorn conjunct tr Pluto and square tr Uranus on the run up, so it may be fraught if this story gains traction.

Gibson, 3 January 1956 3.45pm Peakskill, New York, has a very angry, none-too-pleasant and certainly mouthy chart. Notably he has a 5th house Mars Saturn in Scorpio square Pluto Jupiter in the 2nd – the Mars Saturn Pluto will be where he gets his liking for extreme violence and gore even in his Christ movie, plus a vengeful streak that can’t let go old resentments. His Mercury opposes Uranus squaring onto Neptune, which will make him fanatical. His Mercury is also sextile Saturn Mars and inconjunct Pluto – so not surprising he tends to let his anger rip verbally. At the moment he’s got his Solar Arc Pluto conjunct his Neptune, exact in three months, which is devastating and tr Pluto is conjunct his Descendant moving into his 7th which will make his relationships in general with the public, media as well as partners, overly intense.

Desmond Doss, 7 Feb 1919 Virginia, was a Seventh Day Adventist with an abusive alcoholic father, so the story must have rung a few bells for Gibson. Doss was a Sun Uranus in Aquarius opposition Saturn in Leo and a Taurus Moon, so certainly Fixed and good at sticking to his principles. He also had a confident Jupiter Pluto in Cancer trine Venus Mars in Pisces so would be quite a live wire.

In the movie he’s played by Andrew Garfield, 20 Aug 1983 8.40pm Los Angeles, who has a Leo Sun conjunct Venus in Virgo trine Neptune MC, sextile Saturn Pluto in Libra. With Saturn Pluto also on the point of a T square to an Aquarius Moon opposition Mars in Leo – he’s not as bland and boyish as his photographs look. He’ll be charming and filmic with Sun Venus Neptune MC, but also has a dark side – very stubborn, given to depression, angry. He looks relatively upbeat this month but then is confused and uncertain through October/November. And has his Solar Arc Saturn conjunct his Jupiter within weeks, which will be dampening. Though he is moving into his peak success time from next year for seven years, so whatever is bugging him will pass.

It wouldn’t be the easiest of relationships with Gibson, since Garfield’s Sun is conjunct Gibson’s Pluto and square Gibson’s Mars Saturn. With AG’s Moon opposition Mars square Neptune sitting on top of MG’s Mercury opposition Uranus square Neptune.

Neptune – fighting a duel with the real world



Neptune has an over-idealised image in astrology. Yes, it is known to be slippery and evasive, impractical and low energy, but really it’s all about dreams and visions, kindness and compassion, is what I absorbed early on. Yet it doesn’t stack up in practice. Top athletes who need exceptional physical endurance often have strong Neptune aspects to their Suns. Successful businessmen and explorers are often Pisces, which is ruled by Neptune. The Nazi doctor Josef Mengele was a Pisces Sun trine Neptune. John Gacy, who raped and killed at least 33 teenage boys, was a New Moon in Pisces opposition Neptune. When astrologers were asked to do a cold reading on Gacy’s chart, they waxed eloquent about what a nice man he would be.

To go back to basics, in mythology Neptune ruled the watery oceans and waged war on Athena, who ruled the land. As an act of aggression he raped Medusa (who was then very beautiful) in Athena’s temple, in revenge for which Athena turned her ugly and banished her to the far wildernesses. So there’s a decidedly unpleasant streak about Neptune. The sea can be cruel, is certainly cold, changeable, liable to brew up into monstrous storms, can chip away relentlessly at rocky land until it collapses.

Christianity according to Carl Jung was the iconic symbol for the two thousand year Age of Pisces, ruled by Neptune. Yet Christianity, despite its love and tolerance motif, has at its heart an image of gruesomely bloody torture and the acute physical suffering of a forsaken son. Neptune has a dissolving action so physical dismemberment is part of his lexicon. And in certain modes Neptune is anti-life. This ‘vale of tears’ was the old Christian outlook for getting through a life of suffering and mishaps, until you reached the happy land beyond St Peter’s Gates. It’s not that different from the Muslim belief in 70 virgins in paradise in the afterlife. And Islam is also very Piscean/Neptunean.

Neptune rules religion and when you think of the atrocities perpetrated in the name of all that is holy from the Crusades, the Inquisition, the murderous Protestant versus Roman Catholic centuries, to what’s going on at the moment it throws a different slant on Neptune, the spiritual dreamer. Being wrapped up in an all-encompassing Neptunian vision can obliterate everything around that is human and it can be insensitive, often to a staggering degree.

To go back to mythology: Creativity, which is one of Neptune’s talents, was born when Medusa was beheaded and Pegasus, the winged horse, was set free. So there is this paradox about Neptune – revelling in brutality of the bloodiest variety in order to set free the ideal. An eternal war between the physical world and the spirit. But both are true of Neptune, not just the sanitised reaching-for-nirvana half. You don’t get one without the other.

Merged with other planets Neptune can be a powerful force and not always for the good. Neptune Pluto is scandal prone and megalomaniac. Neptune Uranus can be fanatical as well as inspired. Neptune Saturn is associated with epidemics, paranoia, mental instability as well as social reform. Neptune Jupiter rules high-finance, bankers and the like, as well as dodgy gurus.

At the moment we have a Neptune square Saturn. They are polar opposites since Saturn rules the earthly material world, the body, organizations, rules and regulations, practicality, sanity. Neptune hates it all. It tries and usually succeeds in undermining our security in the real world, dissolves the boundary between what is fact and what is fiction, so we start to doubt our sanity. It also undermines the body so you get illnesses, often difficult to diagnose, or epidemics.

On a more positive note it also undermines the patriarchy (I hate the term but Saturn is very much the masculine authority) so women’s rights come to the fore. And Saturn Neptune does have a creditable record in moving social reforms ahead in general. Neptune’s healing energy brought to bear on the rigid status quo.

Neptune brings its duality to bear on the financial sphere (Saturn) as well, since it is associated with conmen and trickery, bringing financial scandals out into the open and overall undermining confidence in economic security.

It starts to fade in influence in a couple of months and won’t be back till the mid 2020s.

Tom & Taylor – star-crossed lovers

TH TS synTH TS comp


As expected, the fizz, sparkle, pop of the Tom Hiddleston and Taylor Swift romance has spluttered down rapidly, with murmurings from her camp that he wanted to drag her onto the red carpet and was too keen on publicity. ??!!

The astro-reasons are more believable. His Aries Moon certainly spooned with her Sagittarius Sun; and both have Venus in Aquarius. But her Mars in intensely emotional Scorpio is conjunct his Uranus; and her Mars and Pluto both square his detached Aquarius Sun. That was never going to make a long term match.

Their relationship chart has an instant-passion composite Venus square Pluto; but also a cold (and too much work) Moon opposition Saturn; and an up-and-down Saturn square Jupiter; plus an argumentative composite Sun Mars which is being assaulted this month by tr Pluto conjunct Mars; and throughout this year by tr Uranus square the composite Sun.

A chemical mix that was never going to be compatible and bumpy transits. He looks marginally more upset than her. If his birth time is accurate, then he may be in for a few less successful years from 2018 for a while.

Keith Vaz – an impolitic politician



UK Labour MP Keith Vaz has stepped down from his hugely influential position as Chairman of the Home Affairs Select Committee which oversees policy on drugs, crime and sexual exploitation, after a media story about him paying for the services of two male sex workers. What he did was not illegal and he initially tried to blame the newspaper for scandal-mongering; but ultimately resigned because of conflict of interest issues.

Controversy has dogged him throughout his parliamentary career, not the least of which was on the expenses issue, but he has slid through until now without scandals impeding his upward trajectory.

Born 26 November 1956 in Aden to Indian-Goan parents, he came to England aged nine, was educated at a Catholic School and thence on to Cambridge. His father committed suicide when he was 14.

He’s a Sun Saturn (Mercury) in Sagittarius square Pluto in Virgo – so he had a tough start in life which has left him with a very determined (and brass-necked) streak. His Sun Saturn is also trine Uranus, so innovative. He’s got a charmingly evasive Venus Neptune in Scorpio square Uranus; and Mars in Pisces opposition Jupiter (Moon) in Virgo – extravagant, opinionated, a tendency to exaggerate, hint of mercenary motives.

He does have a high-tension/sudden change Solar Arc Saturn opposition his Uranus this year; as well as the meltdown Solar Arc Pluto conjunct his natal Venus Neptune. Plus the September Solar Eclipse is square his Sun Saturn which tends to be a time of chickens coming home to roost; and the mid September Lunar Eclipse is sitting almost exactly on his Mars opposition Jupiter (Moon). A game-changing moment of crisis in his life.

His 10th Harmonic (of self-undoing) is strongly aspected with a ruthless Grand Trine of Pluto trine Mars Neptune (loves publicity) trine Uranus.

Great Fire of London – Jupiter at his worst

Aries IngressCancer IngressSolar EclipsefirepicFire London



The Great Fire of London started around 12.15 am on September 2 1666, destroying nearly 90% of the houses. It followed on from a devastating outbreak of bubonic plague the year before.

As per usual, with a superstitious population, it was deemed that someone had to be to blame – French and Dutch immigrants being high on the list. Astrologer William Lilly was hauled in for questioning since he had predicted it 12 years earlier in a heavily disguised, codified drawing which according to interpretation pointed to the day in question though timed five hours later. See:

It isn’t known how he arrived at his conclusion.

The actual chart has Jupiter exactly conjunct a Pisces Midheaven opposition Sun square Pluto in Gemini – so undoubtedly a huge upsurge of energy. 9/11 also had Jupiter conjunct the MC, so clearly Jupiter not in its beneficial mode. And 9/11 also had a Virgo Sun square Pluto (tied into Saturn) suggesting a powerful event.

The Mars in Scorpio of the Great Fire was heavily aspected in trine to Jupiter and sextiling onto a paranoid Saturn Neptune in Capricorn, as well as being square Uranus – so destructive and explosive, causing panic and confusion. With an Air Grand Trine of Uranus trine Pluto trine Venus in Libra. 9/11 also had an Air Grand Trine of Uranus, Mercury, Saturn, as did the Iraq War of Saturn, Moon, Venus. Both of them were more obviously Air-borne disasters, but I suppose Fire does need air to spread. There are no Fire planets at all in the Great Fire chart.

Lilly probably worked with Eclipse and Ingress charts. The Aries Ingress for 1966 had a brutal Mars (28 Virgo) Moon opposition Venus square Pluto (25 Gemini). The Capricorn 1965 Ingress had an exact Mars square Pluto at 26 degrees – so it would raise flags for the months following. And the Cancer 1666 Ingress had the Mars square Pluto tied into Jupiter and the Sun.

The July 1666 Solar Eclipse had Uranus closely conjunct the Descendant/chart axis, making it a powerful significator of a disruptive event’ and the Cancer New Moon was square Mars and opposition Saturn (conjunct Neptune) – accident prone; and the Lunar Eclipse of June 1666 had the Full Moon at 25 Sag/Gemini with Pluto at 26 Gemini squaring onto Jupiter. Ebertin says of Jupiter Pluto in its most negative mode : “ Loss of social standing and one’s wealth. The misfortune to lose everything.”

Lilly evidently took London to be a 14 degree Gemini place. Looking at London crisis events I’m not sure I wouldn’t make it a later degree Gemini. The London Blitz of 1940 started with Neptune at 24 Virgo; the Brixton Riots of 1981 had Neptune at 24 Sagittarius. The 2008 Lehman collapse which caused a meltdown in the City of London had Sun 23 Virgo opposition Uranus 20 Pisces square Pluto at 28 Sagittarius. The Great Fire had Pluto at 28 Gemini. So last decan of Gemini seems more likely.

Mother Teresa – cold charity


Mother Teresa, the saint of the poor, will become a Vatican-stamped saint on Sunday, which has resurrected the old complaints about her harsh approach to suffering. One critic said “Standing firm against planned parenthood, modernisation of equipment, and a myriad of other solution-based initiatives, Mother Teresa was not a friend of the poor but rather a promoter of poverty.” One doctor was outraged about the appalling lack of hygiene he uncovered – reuse of hypodermic needles, the shortage of medical care, systematic diagnosis, and necessary nutrition, as well as the scarcity of analgesics for those in pain. She seemed to think that suffering was a noble end in itself – a ‘Gift from God’, she said, so did little to alleviate it amongst those she supposedly cared for.

Born 26 August 1910 2.25pm? Skopje, Macedonia, she was a Sun Mars in Virgo trine Saturn in Taurus; Saturn square Venus and a Taurus Moon trine Mars, which I must say did give me pause for thought when I first saw her chart. It seemed hard for a figure of compassion. She had an Earth Grand Trine of Mars trine Uranus trine Moon, which would make her good with money although perhaps limited in imagination. That was formed into a Kite by Uranus opposition Neptune which can be fanatical. So visionary Neptune was the leading planet, fuelled by that tough, uncompromising earthy energy.

Her healer 12th Harmonic is pretty potent tying together Mars Pluto Neptune, which would certainly suit her for working amongst the poorest of the poor in Calcutta. But also has hints of ruthlessness hiding behind religiosity.

Neptune can be a cosmically cold planet.