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Gimme an A

Here’s a lovely photo that Pete’s sent from across the great water

Pete White A chord

He says: “First chord learned – and first song learned was “Take Your Time” by Buddy Holly. Already the “Birds” were lining up to listen to me. LOL”

Cheers Pete (and that guitar is …?)


De Press?

Last night I watched Hampshire’s cricketers win a very good victory over Sussex. This morning I read the report in the News attributed to Steve Wilson (with photo). Strange that, because I spend most matchdays in the media centre (doing some radio work) and Steve wasn’t there. Strange too that ‘his’ report was very much like the BBC’s. Steve’s a very good sports writer and it’s not his fault that local ‘papers often don’t send reporters even to home games – they just take the official ‘agency’ report.

The same newspaper however had plenty of reporters around the seafront over the last few days and they summed everything up yesterday with this front page plus further coverage on 16 more pages plus a 16 page special supplement.


I hope that overall the event reflected well on the city – I wouldn’t invest the time, energy and money I do on local projects if I didn’t care about the place – indeed  care isn’t really a strong enough word. But was it really that great? I don’t mean the weather, that’s just Sod’s Law, but we had plenty of predictions of crowds expected to be between 250-500,000 while even the News yesterday was admitting to 75,000 on the one good day (Saturday). The city seemed less invaded and less gridlocked than was anticipated. Lots of people (including me) paid money for Saturday only to discover that lots of other people got in free, and people have complained about not being allowed to bring food in – thereby being charged very high prices in the arena for often pretty ordinary stuff. But MRA and I sat on the beach by the Aquarium on Thursday and watched lots of people unpacking picnic lunches they’d brought in with them. Meanwhile many of the regular traders around the arena have complained vociferously at loss of trade.

None of that means the event was a disaster but it wasn’t quite the triumph either and it struck me that the local media pretty well turned into an arm of the Council’s PR machine. From the report of Saturday night’s concert I thought it must have been the greatest live gig ever staged but I was there, and it wasn’t.

Perhaps to redress the balance, one of our national ‘papers has focussed on a different story today

Guardian Pompey Lads

Sorry to be a misery – here’s a link from Mick to cheer you up


Pompey’s ‘First’ Festival?

Who 1

Who 2

Just a couple of faded cuttings from an old scrapbook but a great weekend. Fifty years ago (July 1965) and the first time the Birdcage ran four consecutive days: Thursday – Shevells, Friday – Ronnie Jones, Saturday – Jimmy James & Vagabonds (all at Kimbells) then on Sunday we went off to the Savoy for the Who and the Crow (Chris Ryder & Graham Hunt).

And no, it didn’t rain.


Rain Stopped Play

Ref the sunset photo below, it’s the old Pompey saying

“Red sky at night, tomorrow will be shite”


Apparently they put the race times forward today then abandoned everything including the huge site. A bit like that Blues Festival on the Common 20 + years ago

I can’t actually claim I took this today – I’ve only been to the ‘paper shop. This was Friday

A bit of a sad weekend, still at least Ben and his mates have a big shed to shelter in!

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The Highlight?

Well the Sunset was pretty good


I think we missed the young lady with a few names

McBusted were a bit like the modern Monkees

Wet Wet Wet sang songs that seemed to be familiar to other people

Wet Wet Wet

They probably sang “Love Is All Around” but we’d gone home by then – so cannot comment about Spandau Ballet


Wimbledon has

Henman Hill and Murray Mound. We’ve got Southsea Screen

My Resident Astrologer and I went down to see what was happening today. Here’s our view of the America’s Cup race from the shoreline (where the commentary on the PA was largely inaudible)

Crowd 1

We didn’t have a clue what was happening so MRA suggested we check out the big screen, showing the TV broadcast

It was really weird. Thousands of people had come down to the common to an international sporting contest to watch it on the box. The Brits won the first one and everybody cheered but it wasn’t quite like the day that Pompey brought home the FA Cup. We’re back home now as the second race is happening. I’ll probably stick to the cricket.

Crowd 2



Apologies for the late notice. For those of you who can bear to miss Spandau Ballet & Wet Wet Wet it’s another Milton Hall night later today (8pm) with lots of ladies: Willow vocal group from Cornwall, Megan Linford and Sue Apicella

PS Mick has just been in touch to say it’s next week. I posted this and deleted the email so no idea now except to say that he reported that Willow had driven up from Cornwall – would they do that a week in advance?

Very sorry

Confused of Pompey