Sunday, 28 April 2013

Now, what I’m about to tell you probably isn’t going to be good for my image (not that I really have one), but I shall share anyway.

I like Bonnie Tyler.  I also like the Eurovision Song Contest.

So imagine my delight - actually, delight’s perhaps a bit strong – to hear that Bonnie’s representing the UK in this year’s competition.

Here’s hoping she does better than poor old Engelbert Humperdinck did last year.  Ahem, let’s move swiftly on.

Her song, ‘Believe in Me’ is quite catchy.  A bit of an ‘ear worm’ if you like – at least I’ve found myself singing it at regular intervals without really knowing what I was singing.

If anyone can win it for us it’s Bonnie Tyler – not only can she can belt out a power ballad like no other (well, perhaps with the exception of Jennifer Rush), she is, I believe, a huge star in Europe.

She’s also the subject of one of the best sat nav jokes I’ve heard; you’re perhaps familiar with it already, but if not here goes – I’ve got a Bonnie Tyler sat nav, it keeps telling me to turn around and every now and then it falls apart. 

OK, perhaps it’s only funny if you remember her biggest hit from the 1980s, so have a listen to ‘Total Eclipse of the Heart’ and then it’ll make sense, I promise.

In the meantime, let’s wish Bonnie Tyler all the best for the competition on Saturday 18th May in Malmo, Sweden.  After all, we’re holding out for a hero (sorry, had to get that in somewhere!)

Monday, 22 April 2013

Gasification, pyrolysis, anaerobic digesters – these are words with which I wasn’t familiar until this year.

(In truth, I once had a fleeting knowledge of ‘aerobics’ but that was an exercise class and a long time ago).

What do all the above have in common?  When followed by the word ‘plant’ they process waste.

What’s the significance of this?  Plans for all three of these plants have been proposed for Corby.

Why Corby?  Does Corby really need these?

Does Corby and its surrounding villages produce so much rubbish they need three types of waste plant?!

And, if the plan is to ship stuff in to keep these plants running, ask yourselves why should Corby become the dumping ground of the UK?

It shouldn’t.  That’s why there’s a campaign for Corby to say ‘NO’ to these developments. 

In my opinion, we should be attracting quality industries and good jobs for the town and its people.  We want more companies like Weetabix, Avon, and RS Components to name just a few (the list is for illustrative purposes only, apologies to those I’ve omitted).

Corby, and its people, deserve the best.

The town may have a heavy industrial past – why should it have a waste plant future?

Please join the campaign and say ‘NO’ to waste plants for Corby. 

For more information please visit

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Chalky - the white stag of Brookfield Plantation - and his Facebook page!

 A deer with a Facebook page?

It could probably only happen here in the UK!

Chalky, a white stag who lives on the Brookfield Plantation on the outskirts of Corby, has indeed got his own dedicated Facebook page called ‘Save Chalky and his Brookfield Plantation friends’.

Why ‘Save Chalky’? you may ask.

Because the Brookfield Plantation is under threat from a ‘resource recovery park’ to accompany a gasification plant.

To create this industrial park, 50 hectares (approx) of trees – home to Chalky and his herd – will be destroyed.

To raise awareness of the cause to save the woodland, this Facebook page was created.

Around 300 local people have also recently held a peaceful demonstration in Corby Town Centre where a petition opposing the development – containing over 1000 names – was delivered to councillors at The Corby Cube.

For further information please visit the website

Or Chalky’s facebook page – ‘Save Chalky and his Brookfield Plantation friends’

Please ‘like’ and ‘share’ and tell all your friends!  Many thanks, Hx

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Brookfield Plantation Protest March - update, 14th April

The protest march against the Brookfield Plantation development on Saturday went well.

I’d estimate there were about 300 people there, with all age groups represented.

It was particularly heartening to see lots of families with small children – after all, it’s our children’s futures we are trying to protect.

The sun shone, we waved our placards and the petition containing over 1000 names was presented to the councillors on duty in The Cube.

Media coverage was good – we were the lead item on BBC’s Look East on Saturday evening; the Northants Telegraph had an article and video on its website by lunchtime and I believe we also made the local radio.

On Sunday morning I met a friend of mine from Corby whom I hadn’t seen for a while, and I said to her I’d been on the protest march yesterday.

To my surprise, she hadn’t heard about the march, or the proposed development at Brookfield Plantation, the gasification plant, the loss of trees, the increase in lorry traffic in the town and the other associated issues.

So please keep telling everyone you know in Corby and the surrounding villages about this development, because it appears there are still some people who don’t know about it.

This is an issue which affects EVERYONE in the area – we don’t want Corby turned into the dumping ground of the UK!

Saturday, 13 April 2013

I’ve taken to watching the Great British Sewing Bee.

Initially, the sewing didn’t have much of a draw for me – previous readers will be aware that I’m not very gifted when it comes to practical crafts such as sewing, knitting etc.

I wasn’t sure how Claudia Winkleman would work as a presenter on this format either.

I needn’t have worried.  She’s great – yes, she’s quirky, but you need someone who’s not going to take it too seriously otherwise it would become a bit ‘worthy’.

I like the judges too – although I think Patrick would look better without that beard (please discuss).

Funnily enough – and this is perhaps the mark of a good programme – I actually care about the contestants and the garments they make. 

I like the lady from Birmingham, who tends to laugh when she makes a mistake.  The older lady – who I think they said was 81 – is fantastic and has been making her clothes all her life.

It appears I’m learning something too – I didn’t know what a rolled seam was before; I even found myself commenting on a zip not being concealed correctly on a pair of trousers!

So, the Great British Sewing Bee has been somewhat of a televisual surprise and a delight – a bit like the Great British Bake Off before it.

I’m wondering what the programme makers will come up with next though.  I fear it may be competitive knitting or jam making...

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Brookfield Plantation development - Protest March, Saturday 13th April, 2013

This may surprise you to know, but before this year, I’d never really been what you’d call ‘politically active’.

I don’t remember ever haven written to my MP or the local paper about anything – I’m certainly not an ‘angry of Tunbridge Wells’ type of person.

Yet, I’ve now done both those things in support of Chalky (the white stag) and his Brookfield Plantation friends.

I’ve never been on a protest march.

That too is set to change when I join the march against the proposed development at Brookfield Plantation.

Taking place on Saturday 13th April, the peaceful protest march will start at 10am from the Connaughty Centre on Cottingham Road in Corby.

It will then proceed to the Corby Cube for the petition containing over 1000 names to be handed in to the councillors.

The marchers have been asked to wear something green if possible – I’d like to think to show solidarity with nature and the protection of green spaces, rather than trying to emulate Kermit the Frog (after all, as he said himself, ‘it’s not easy being green’).

I emphasize it will be a peaceful protest – there will be children and senior citizens in attendance, and none of us want any trouble.

We just want to exercise our democratic right to protest against the gasification plant and associated resource recovery park.

Remember – Save Chalky and his Brookfield Plantation Friends – I think that’s what I’ll put on my placard (if it’ll fit!)

Thursday, 4 April 2013

As you get older, it’s all too easy to become cynical about life.

The economy, politicians, bankers, the state of the Eurozone, tensions between North and South Korea – all these things can get you down.

That’s why I’d like to relate a couple of recent acts of kindness that helped to restore my faith in human nature.

When we had all that snow and ice the other week I was delicately making my way down a slippery path to the shop near where I live.

Even though I was wearing sensible winter shoes I slid over, and only stopped myself from falling to the ground by holding on to somebody’s hedge while my feet went from under me Bambi-style.

Another Mum from school who was driving past saw my predicament, stopped her car, and drove me down to the shop to fetch my essential supplies.

Whilst there, we retold the tale of me falling in the hedge to another friend who happened to be present, and she promptly loaded me into her car for the return journey.

Then I was in Sainsbury’s in Market Harborough on Easter Saturday.  My daughter and I were browsing the CDs, looking for the new Simple Minds compilation, thinking we’d treat ourselves for Easter.

An elderly lady came up to us and asked if we were collecting the Active Kids vouchers for school.

I told her we were, and she handed over the ones she’d just been given with her shopping.

Now, I know some of you are perhaps reading this and thinking ‘so what’, but genuinely, these cheered me up and reminded me that the world is full of good people.

So a big ‘thank you’ to everyone who performs little acts of kindness every day – they may be small gestures to you, but to the recipient they can mean so much.