Last year, I endured an internal crisis. I could no longer cope with the daily news about the war ravaged Middle Eastern region. The images of suffering got unbearably graphic by the day. When I thought I had seen the worst, another scene would break my heart in two. Existential questions such as ‘Can I really call myself educated when I ignore the suffering around me?’ troubled me. But then, I do have a family to look after and a hefty mortgage; responsibilities that limit most of us. [Read more…] about Building Bridges through Volunteering
I have just returned from a trip of a lifetime – a visit to an Emperor Penguin colony on the frozen Weddell Sea within the Antarctica Continent.
Yes it was a bit of a hike to get there. It took me a couple of days to travel to the gathering point in Punta Arenas, Chile. [Read more…] about Trip of a Lifetime – My Antarctic Trip
We don’t normally see the name ‘Chandler’s Ford’ being mentioned in the national news (ok, the HSBC armed robbery on Bournemouth Road in September 2007 was an exception: “Two armed robbers were shot dead by police”).
However today, ‘Chandler’s Ford’ is mentioned all over the media, from The Times, Daily Telegraph, The Sun, Mirror…, and on the BBC radio programme. [Read more…] about Roger Clark’s Quest to Antarctica to Photograph the Right Penguins
Last Sunday I had a brief interview with Frank Damerell, the 92-year-old war veteran from Chandler’s Ford.
Frank arrived at the War Memorial on Hursley Road just after 10.30am, accompanied by his son Phil. Frank later laid a RAFA (Royal Air Forces Association) wreath during the annual Remembrance Sunday Service at the war memorial at St. Boniface Church in Chandler’s Ford. [Read more…] about Meet 92-year-old War Veteran Frank Damerell
One hundred years ago a group of Japanese Red Cross nurses travelled from their Far Eastern homeland to offer their services at Royal Victoria Military Hospital in Netley in Eastleigh, at the height of World War 1.
The 20-strong team, many of whom had never travelled outside of Japan, spent a year at the Netley hospital, supporting their British counterparts, to attend to the thousands of soldiers wounded in the bloody battles of the war.
[Read more…] about The Japanese Red Cross at Netley, 1915-16
This morning I went to the Joint Charities 43rd Annual Christmas Market at Chandler’s Ford Methodist Church.
I love this annual tradition – as it kicks off my internal clock for Christmas. It reminds me that I need to start pick up a pen, write a few Christmas cards (while adding names or crossing names off my Christmas card list as well).
This morning, former Eastleigh Mayor Councillor Jane Welsh opened the 43rd Christmas Market. [Read more…] about Review: Joint Charities 43rd Annual Christmas Market Chandler’s Ford 2016
The Joint Charities Christmas Market is an annual tradition in Chandler’s Ford.
The past Eastleigh Mayor will open it officially at 9.45 am. There will be 12 charity stalls, each selling their own Christmas cards and other goods. There’ll also be a cake stall and raffle. [Read more…] about Joint Charities 43rd Christmas Market: Saturday 12th November 2016 at Methodist Church Hall
This is Part 2 of my interview with Barbara Large, MBE, founder of the Winchester Writing Conference as it was known. Now known as the Winchester Writers’ Festival, it is recognised as one of the major writing events of the year.
Despite stepping down from running the conference in 2013, Barbara is as busy as ever running workshops, leading tours around the CPI production plant at Chippenham for those interested in self-publishing and having her own creative writing consultancy – Creative Words Matter. [Read more…] about The Writing Life – Barbara Large, Part 2
I had the great joy of meeting Barbara Large at the Winchester Writing Conference (as it was known) many moons ago. Now known as the Winchester Writers’ Festival, this three day writing event was started by Barbara in 1980. She led the conference until 2013.
Barbara is as busy as ever and runs workshops. [Read more…] about The Writing Life – Barbara Large, Part 1
I regularly attend the Winchester Writers’ Festival, which was originally the Winchester Writing Conference started by Barbara Large, MBE.
I am glad to say I will be interviewing Barbara soon. Her help and encouragement to so many writers over the years, including me, has been phenomenal and much appreciated. [Read more…] about What Makes a Good Writing Conference?
Just a quick reminder that Barbara Large’s new creative writing workshops start later this month at The Dovetail Centre.
Further details below. [Read more…] about Reminder: Creative Writing Classes at The Dovetail Centre
Barbara Large will be running creative writing classes at the Dovetail Centre in Chandler’s Ford from 21st September 2016.
This is great news for any writer who is looking for the mutual support creative writing classes can give and who want to develop their skills. [Read more…] about Barbara Large: NEW Creative Writing Classes in Chandler’s Ford
Last week’s interview into the poetic life with successful local poet, Sandra Gordon, showed her sharing her thoughts about poetry and naming some of her favourite modern and classic poets.
I loved discovering the Poetry Foundation website as I researched some of those Sandra named. I hope to make great use of this given the site gives biographies of poets and shares samples of their works. It could be a great place to go to if you wanted to read more of a poet’s work but weren’t sure where to begin. The Poetry Society website is also full of useful information. [Read more…] about The Poetic Life: Sharing the Muse – Sandra Gordon
Sandra Gordon, near neighbour and local poet, has recently performed some of her poetry at the New Forest Folk Festival as part of the Lines and Squares Poets.
She has also received the exciting news her work will be published in The North magazine in July. [Read more…] about The Poetic Life: Interview with Sandra Gordon, Part 1
Further to my interview with Jacci Gooding last week which focused on her adventures in self publishing, this post now looks at Jacci’s writing life.
She also reveals what she looks for in a good story as she prepares to launch her own short story collection, A Collection of Unsettling Short Stories. The anthology will be available as an ebook, as a paperback and in audio formats. [Read more…] about Interview: Jacci Gooding – The Writing Life
One of the things I love about writing for Chandler’s Ford Today has been the chance to interview fellow authors, to share news from the publishing world and so on.
Today I talk to Jacci Gooding, who I met at the Winchester Writers’ Festival. As well as learning a great deal from talks at conferences like this one, the other big joy has been making friends with other writers and knowing you are not alone out there. Mike Sedgwick touched on this theme recently with his post about the Secret Lives of Chandler’s Ford anthology. [Read more…] about Interview: Jacci Gooding – Adventures in Self Publishing
One great thing about living in Chandler’s Ford is the transport available given we are near the motorway network (without living on top of it). Then we have the railway station, a bus service and we are not far from the ferries.
I often use these links. For example I went a couple of years ago to the National Railway Museum in York, which has recently been in the news because of its restoration of The Flying Scotsman. [Read more…] about Away Days from Chandler’s Ford Station: York
It’s the Charity Christmas Card week, from 15th – 22nd November 2015.
Deputy Mayor Eastleigh Councillor Des Scott opened Chandler’s Ford’s 42nd Joint Charities Christmas Market last Saturday (14th November 2015). [Read more…] about Uplifting: Chandler’s Ford 42nd Joint Charities Christmas Market 2015
Update November 2016: Chandler’s Ford 43rd Joint Charities Annual Christmas Market Saturday 12th November 2016
Original post (below):
[Read more…] about Chandler’s Ford 42nd Joint Charities Christmas Market 2015
Note: This short story is to be read after my previous article, Where is My Tattoo?.
The surgeon who took my tattoo away was delighted with himself when I met him two weeks after the surgery. He had a broad smile and told me convincingly that my cancer was gone. Big smile. Nice to hear about 6 weeks after I was first told, “you have a cancer”. But… this is England and there always is a but. [Read more…] about The Washing Machine