Its been a while since I suckled my hungry readers, and I apologise to you, my eager sucklets, that my blogoriffic teat has been so long dry. There are reasons (and I am dropping the disturbing udder-metaphors from this point on); enjoying the weird early summer sun and tending my flowering peony and burgeoing veg patch to crank my ancient laptop into life and type up some Beestonia. So here’s a non-specific round-up of Beestonia news:
Tesco: Has it been hit by the legendary Curse of Beestonia? Talking to a few people of late who know such things reveals that Tesco are in a bit of a panic regarding the Beeston store. Apparently, takings are low, staff are being laid off and they are now starting to worry about the wisdom of building a town centre store when Long Eaton and Toton both posess Complexes of Shameless Mammon. I still urge Beestonians to visit, but only to pick up loss-leaders and loss-leaders only. While Bristolians smash up Tesco’s efforts to impose a store, Beestonians choose to simply stay away. Well done, Beestonians.
Festival of Britain: Its sixty years since the Festival of Britain, a post-war pat-on-the-back we gave ourself once the dust has settled on the horrors of the prospects of Nazi invasion. The SouthBank centre on London’s, err, South Bank is holding a rather wondeful exhibition celebrating this. What has this to do with Beestonia though? Well, Trowell, which is geographically close enough to consider part of my prospective empire, was chosen in 1951 to be the Festival’s ‘Ideal Town’, its communal spirit and prettiness( this was when transport was dicatated by its pre-Beeching Report rail station than its present fame as having a service station when travellers betwixt Leeds and London could have a wee and a massively overpriced sandwich) lending it some fame, albeit temporary. You might have seen a few clues en route to Ilkeston: theres an fiftieth anniversary obeslisk in the centre of the village, and you’ve probably had a pint in the Festival Inn. This year, its having a big party to celebrate, once I get the precise details off the parish county I’ll let you know.
Chloe Memorial Concert: I’ve recently wrote on the terrible death of a most-talented local teen, that was so wonderfully commemerated with a floral spendour in Beeston Square. She was an aspirant singer, so her friends organised a charity concert recently. I couldn’t make it, due to other commitments, yet I hear it went brilliantly. I’ve asked a friend of Chloe’s, and trainee journalist to write a piece about it; watch this space.
I’m on twitter, so come find. Search ‘beeestonia’ (note, thats three ‘e’s.)
The Crown Inn..has recently won, for the second year running,CAMRA Notts Pub of the Year. And this is not in any way connected to the landlord recently buying me a pint, but its whole-heartedly deserved. Last weekend, they attracted Britain’s best film director, Shane Meadows, to sup ale at thew same table as myself. Though I was too locked in the paralysing jaws of cheap cider to engage with him, I doubt many towns in the UK can claim to have Spielberg drop into the local for a dark stout or a half-scrumpy, or Polanski demand some pork scratchings with his Vodka and Elderflower Presse.
Arsonist Twat: not all Beestonians are geniuses.
Orwell Prised: I love a bit of the Artist Formally Known As Eric, but when I recently re- read the concluding lines of compulsary text 1984, as Winston Smith sits and sips sour gin and smokes a rough ciggy straight after a life of repression and months of torture, just before a bullet enters his head as he concedes his individual soul has been destroyed; I found myself not finding myself screaming at the vileness of totalitarianism, but rather feeling a bit jealous that Smith had fags and booze at hand. Thus, I’m back on the wagon for the foreseeable, and foresaking the tabs. I best lay off Animal Farm, lest I am impelled to give up bacon.
And finally: a very lovely journalist friend recently alerted me to a thing of wonder, a thing of joy. I apologise for not furnishing your lives with this glory beforehand, it totally passed me by. Before Soubry, before Palmer, before Lester, Beeston was governed by the most wonderfully monikered Seymour Cocks . I need add nothing to that.