Sunday, May 17, 2015

Gadding about

It's been a busy few weeks.

To a talk on Art Deco Sunderland by Michael Johnson as part of Local History Month.  Much was made of the old Regal cinema (which became the Odeon) on Holmeside. It's now a bingo hall but the art deco interior, Michael told us, was one of the best preserved in the country.

Also this week to see The Producers on stage. It was the second time I've seen the show and it was as funny as ever. Shame about all the empty seats in the theatre. Sunderland Empire really need to look again at their pricing of tickets to entice folk in.  I'm no fan of Jason Manford but have to admit he was very good in the lead role here, he can act and sing. 

David Bedella played the role of Roger de Bris but I remember him as being the Best Frank-n-Furter that the Rocky Horror Show has ever had on stage.

To see, for the third time, Matthew Bourne's production of The Car Man. As sizzling hot as ever.

And to an independent venue to see The Rise and Fall of a Northern Star. A one-woman play all about Tracy Star and her adventures in the music business.  Well worth a look.

I love live theatre, can you tell?

And on top of all of that, I submitted the first draft of my new book today.  I'll tell you more about it when I can.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Saturday, May 09, 2015

Coronation Street Weekly Update - Steve's new bitch arrives

I've been writing Coronation Street weekly updates since 1995 and this week's Coronation Street update has just gone live here  

This week on Corrie, Steve got a new bitch.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Saturday, May 02, 2015

Nailing my colours to the mast: A walking tour of Sunderland's East End

Today I went on a walking tour of Sunderland's East End. It's where Sunderland first started, down by the docks, the muck and the water, the river and the ships.  There are still a lot of old buildings down there and it's definitely worth a look around. 

The walk was organised as part of Local History Month in Sunderland.  It started at Holy Trinity Church, an amazing old church full of curiosities:

This plaque commemorates the birthplace of Sunderland hero Jack Crawford.  It's from his heroic actions at the Battle of Camperdown that the term 'nail your colours to the mast' originates.  Read all about it here.
 Some wonderfully camp and kitsch artwork on the walls of the church.

 And more...
This thrills me enormously. Not just the antiquity and symmetry of the switches in the church, but the fact that they all have their original labels on them.

Faces watch you at every turn in the church...

...making sure that you don't nick whatever's in the box.

The walk left the church and down to Trafalgar Square Almshouses, passing one of many blue plaques on the Old Sunderland Heritage Trail.  This is the site of the old workhouse, an unforgiving place I'd imagine.
 Trafalgar Square Almshouses, now a peaceful little gem tucked away.

 Ooh! What's that sign say?

The walk then meandered behind the church where there was a good contrast between the old and the new styles of buildings.  

This building was built as the Boys Orphanage.

 Another blue plaque, one of very many on the walk. So much history in such a small area.

The circular walk brought us back to Holy Trinity church.  I decided to walk back into town along Church Street East where these old buildings still stand in splendour...

...even if some of them are boarded up...

 The beauty and the beast.
 The Quayside Exchange. One of the few renovated and purposeful buildings in the East End.

At the top of one of the buildings next to the Quayside Exchange was this golden galleon weathervane.
And at the top of another, the Eagle Building, this fine stone eagle (with a seagull on its head).

The Eagle Building.
The old Bridge Hotel Vaults with a lovely bit of tiling.

 Front view of the old Bridge Hotel vaults, now called Lambton House.

And that's that. If you'd like to know more about Sunderland's historic East End, and why would you not? - it's all here.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Coronation Street Weekly Update - is it edible and have I wet myself?

I've been writing Coronation Street weekly updates since 1995 and this week's Coronation Street update has just gone live here  

This week on Corrie, Sally and Tim have been an absolute joy.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Advice to my younger self

Advice I'd give to my younger self, if I could.  I can't, of course, and more's the pity for it. But if I could, here's what I would say...

Don't worry.
Be happy.
Ooh, ooh ooh ooh oo-ooh ooh oo-ooh ooh ooh oo-ooh
(Don't worry)
Ooh oo-ooh ooh ooh oo-ooh
(Be happy)
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Coronation Street Weekly Update - wedding, kidnap and mysterious mural

I've been writing Coronation Street weekly updates since 1995 and this week's Coronation Street update has just gone live here  

This week on Corrie, a mysterious mural appeared.
I'm on twitter @flaming_nora
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