OK i admit it, i've given up. Several weeks of on/off searching trialling and frustration mean i've for now given up. Essentially i decided (for whatever whimsical reason!) to move from the emacs diary to an org file..
So previously my diary simply contained lines such as;
%%(diary-anniversary 10 03 2017) marvin went paranoid - %d yrs old %%(diary-anniversary 10 13 2017) supply switch over date - %d yrs ago %%(diary-cyclic 14 1 04 2019) Black bin %%(diary-cyclic 14 1 11 2019) Blue bin
really simple and it worked, ok the date system takes some remembering as its in x m d y where
x = number of re-occurrences if a cyclic event
m = month
d = day
y = year
easy enough but backwards for the UK who are always d.m.y or at worst y.m.d.
So after much searching and testing i managed to get an org file working with anniversaries and also a working %d element;
* Anniversaries %%(org-anniversary 1969 2 14) Arthur Dent - %d yrs old
here you can see the date is easy its in y.m.d format and the %d reports correctly in the agenda, however for cyclic events you still need to use the
diary-cyclic format so i have an entry which looks like
* Other dates <%%(diary-cyclic 26 1 4 2019)>
however nothing shows, i've tried all date formats, different headings, moving it to the start of the file ie no heading but nothing i try manages to get it working. I've searched the googleplex and found indications that the format shown should work but still
C-c a and nothing is shown in the org agenda.
Various sites i've search with results;
there were many more… so if anyone wants to put me out of my misery (perhaps literally!) please mail.