So, in two weeks time – and three years earlier than we expected – we have a general election to look forward to. Some people may have reacted to this news with “a chance to get rid of the current government”; others with “a chance to give the government a greater mandate”. But for many it is possibly “here we go again”. [Read more…] about General Election 2017
We’re at the time of year when the evenings are light enough for a short walk after work or after dinner. But where to go? Somewhere that’s not too far away, doesn’t need a map to navigate around, and is more interesting than wandering round a housing estate.
How about Fleming Park?
Fleming Park? Really?
To many people, Fleming Park is synonymous with the sports centre; it’s where you go to swim, play badminton or squash [Read more…] about A Walk in the Park
After the success of last year’s event, Hampshire Music Festival are running their World Music Festival again on Sunday 14th May. The event consists of a number of workshops to experience drumming from around the world. It is open to the public and suitable for all ages (from seven years old) and abilities. [Read more…] about Hampshire World Music Festival 2017
In my review of the Thornden Community Wind Band’s Christmas concert, I mentioned that their next concert would be with the 14th Eastleigh Scout and Guide Band (The Spitfires). Ruby Barefoot commented that he would add the date to his diary. Well, Ruby, I hope you managed to get tickets because this was a concert not to be missed. [Read more…] about Thornden Community Wind Band and The Spitfires in Concert
For a variation on the common “kindle vs. book” debate, I’m turning my attention to church hymn singing. Some churches now use large screens rather than traditional hymn books – but is either better than the other? [Read more…] about The Great Book Vs. Screen Debate
I went to see a West End theatre production recently. But I didn’t have to travel to London or pay a small fortune for my ticket; it was at Thornden Hall and the ticket was only £15.
This was one of the National Theatre Live productions – live theatre beamed to cinemas around the country. [Read more…] about West End Theatre in our own Backyard
I’m not total philistine; I have read some of the classic novels. However, Treasure Island is on the list of the many that I haven’t. So I was doubly excited to go to see Thornden’s Schools’ production of Treasure Island on Friday (10 February). Partly to top up my “blagger’s guide to the classics”, but mainly for the chance to see another of the school’s productions. [Read more…] about Review: Treasure Island by Thornden School
Quite often (I would go far as to say too often) when you go shopping – either physically or online – you are asked to complete a customer satisfaction survey: “Please rate our service on a scale of 1 to 5” [Read more…] about Customer Satisfaction Surveys
Last weekend the zip on my jacket got stuck and I spent several unsuccessful minutes trying to release it. Eventually, my partner grew frustrated at my display of ineptitude and took the garment from me – well, she is a mum, therefore well qualified and experienced at solving all clothing malfunctions and failures.
No, she couldn’t free the zip either. After a few minutes she gave up and went to do something more interesting and useful (and there are lots of things that are more interesting and useful than freeing a stuck zip). [Read more…] about How Do You Solve Problems?
“It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas” – well, it certainly is for the 380 people who went to “A Swing-Along Christmas” concert presented by the Thornden Community Wind Band with their special guests The Spitfire Sisters on Friday evening. This was a wonderful concert and a fine introduction to the week before Christmas.
[Read more…] about Thornden Community Wind Band Christmas Concert
Last week’s autumn production for the Eastleigh Operatic & Musical Society gave us an Extravaganza of Musical Shows – a selection of both some of the better-known and lesser-known numbers from musical theatre.
There is a huge canon of musical shows to choose from, and the company had selected an eclectic programme to showcase the skills of the performers. [Read more…] about Review: Extravaganza of Musical Shows by Eastleigh Operatic and Musical Society
You may have noticed in the news media that there was a Presidential election in the USA last week. You may also be vaguely aware that not everyone was happy with the result. Well, here we see an important and valuable lesson about the democratic process:
You don’t always get the result that you want.
As expected, The 14th Eastleigh Scout and Guide Band “The Spitfires” gave an outstanding performance at their concert on 5th November. A varied programme included musicals, military marches, and classical pieces – even The Village People’s music got a look in.
The concert included two soloists. The first sang Nessun Dorma – a piece normally heard as a tenor voice, but no way diminished by the soprano (I think it was) at the concert. A wonderful voice, singing the high notes with as much precision and clarity as the lower ones. [Read more…] about Review: The Spitfires: Last Night of the Proms 2016 – the 14th Eastleigh Scout and Guide Band
Sometimes I write reviews of concerts and shows; sometimes I write about places to go for a day out. This post isn’t intended to be either of those, though it may look a bit like both.
Last week I fulfilled an ambition I’ve held for several years by going to see the stage version of The Railway Children. This was one of my most-loved books as a child (and that of my sister too), and the 1970 film is undoubtedly one of my all-time favourites. [Read more…] about Review: The Railway Children
On Saturday, 5th November 2016, The 14th Eastleigh Scout and Guide Band “The Spitfires” will be in concert at Chandler’s Ford Methodist Church.
The concert promises a wide range of music from the Village People to Puccini, and will end with the band’s rousing “Last Night of the Proms” finale including Pomp and Circumstance (aka Land of Hope and Glory), Auld Lang Syne, Rule Britannia and Sunset. [Read more…] about Spitfires in Concert – Last Night of the Proms – 5th November 2016
A new coffee shop has opened in Eastleigh town centre.
Now, your reaction to this might be “Bill Bryson was right; Eastleigh needs a new coffee shop like a fish needs a bicycle”.
In a previous post Coffee vs Discount in Eastleigh I pondered the reasons for the consumer demand for expensive coffee. [Read more…] about Too Many Coffee Shops in Eastleigh? Think Again.
It’s that time of year when new students are leaving for university. This post is for them.
University is the greatest opportunity you will ever get for meeting new people and taking up new hobbies and challenges. Make the most of that opportunity. [Read more…] about Leaving for University
A few weeks ago, faced with a small clutch of younglings (and two grandparents) to entertain, we visited two of our local county parks – Hampshire County Council’s Royal Victoria and Eastleigh Borough Council’s Itchen Valley.
These proved to be outstanding choices. I’ve visited both parks before, but being accompanied by such a range of ages helped me to appreciate what marvellous leisure assets these places are. [Read more…] about In Praise of Royal Victoria and Itchen Valley Country Parks
It was back to the 1920s at Thornden School last week.
I don’t mean that slates and the 3 R’s were reintroduced, or that poor performance in class was admonished with a cane across the hand.
No, I mean that this was the decade in which the school’s summer performance of “Singing in the Rain” is set. [Read more…] about Review: Thornden School – Singing in the Rain
The Thornden Community Wind Band presented their summer concert, “Round the World in 90 minutes” on Friday 17 June. This was a light-hearted programme of music loosely themed on a trip around the world. Light-hearted doesn’t mean low quality. This was a performance of very high calibre – and great entertainment.
The auditorium was metaphorically became an aeroplane for the concert. The audience were the passengers, the conductor was the pilot, and the band was the engine. We appreciated the range of instruments during the “engine testing” at the start of the concert when a representative from each section played one or two bars of their own choice. [Read more…] about Review: Thornden Community Wind Band Concert