Posted in books, films & DVD

Hans Christian Anderson

Danish author and poet Hans Christian Andersen sadly died on 4th August 1875 in Copenhagen, Denmark. He was born April 2, 1805. And is best remembered for his fairy tales. He was also a prolific writer of plays, travelogues and novels. A very early fairy tale by Andersen called The Tallow Candle (Danish: Tællelyset) is about a candle who did not feel appreciated. In 1829, Andersen enjoyed considerable success with a short story titled A Journey on Foot from Holmen’s Canal to the East Point of Amager. In the book, the protagonist meets characters ranging from Saint Peter to a talking cat. He followed this success with a theatrical piece, Love on St. Nicholas Church Tower and a short volume of poems. At Jura, near Le Locle, Switzerland, he wrote the story, Agnete and the Merman. He spent an evening in the Italian seaside village of Sestri Levante the same year, inspiring the name, The Bay of Fables. It was during 1835 that Andersen published the first installment of his immortal Fairy Tales (Danish: Eventyr; lit. “fantastic tales”).

More stories, completing the first volume, were published in 1836 and 1837. The collection consists of nine tales that includes The Tinderbox, The Princess and the Pea, Thumbelina, The Little Mermaid, and The Emperor’s New Clothes. The quality of these stories was not immediately recognized, and they sold poorly. At the same time, Andersen enjoyed more success with two novels, O.T. (1836) and Only a Fiddler (1837); the latter was reviewed by the young Søren Kierkegaard. in July 1839 during a visit to the island of Funen that Andersen first wrote the text of his poem, Jeg er en Skandinav (I am a Scandinavian).Andersen returned to the fairy tale genre in 1838 with another collection, Fairy Tales Told for Children (1838) (Eventyr, fortalte for Børn. Ny Samling.), which consists of The Daisy, The Steadfast Tin Soldier, and The Wild Swans. 1845 heralded a breakthrough for Andersen with the publication of four different translations of his fairy tales. The Little Mermaid appeared in the popular periodical Bentley’s Miscellany. It was followed by a second volume, Wonderful Stories for Children. Two other volumes enthusiastically received were A Danish Story Book and Danish Fairy Tales and Legends.Andersen would continue to write fairy tales until 1872. Some of his most famous fairy tales include:

The Angel, The Bell,The Emperor’s New Clothes, The Galoshes of Fortune, The Fir Tree, The Happy Family, The Ice-Maiden “, It’s Quite True! The Little Match Girl, The Little Mermaid, Little Tuck, The Nightingale, The Old House, Sandman, The Princess and the Pea, Several Things, The Red Shoes,The Shadow, The Shepherdess and the Chimney Sweep, The Snow Queen, The Steadfast Tin Soldier, The Story of a Mother, The Swineherd, Thumbelina, The Tinderbox, The Ugly Duckling, The Wild Swans

During his lifetime Hans Christian Anderson delighted children worldwide and was feted by royalty. Andersen’s fairy tales have been translated into more than 125 languages and are culturally embedded in the West’s collective consciousness, readily accessible to children, but presenting lessons of virtue and resilience in the face of adversity for mature readers as well. His stories laid the groundwork for other children’s classics, such as Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame and Winnie the Pooh by A.A. Milne. The technique of making inanimate objects, such as toys, come to life (Little Ida’s Flowers) would later be used by Lewis Carroll and Beatrix Potter. In the English-speaking world, his fairy tales remain immensely popular and are widely read. The Emperor’s New Clothes and The Ugly Duckling have both become household words. Many of his story’s have also inspired motion pictures, plays, ballets, and animated films

Posted in books

Broken Heart by Tim Weaver

I would also like to read Broken Heart by Tim Weaver, the seventh gripping thriller to feature Missing Persons Investigator David Raker. Raker is called to investigate the mysterious disappearance of a Sixty year old actress named Lynda Korin who was married to a mysterious director and starred in low budget films, who drives to a secluded beauty spot on the Somerset coast. CCTV watches her enter but doesn’t see her leaving. In fact, Lynda Korin is never seen again.

the police get nowhere so Wendy Fisher calls Missing Persons Investigator David Raker for his help. For him, the mystery of where she went is only the start. The real question is why a woman with no reason to run would choose to leave her entire life behind? Was it her decision? Or did someone make it for her? Raker investigates a trail of decades-old lies. But only Lynda Korin knows the most shocking secret of all – and she’s missing, presumed dead…

Posted in Events, nature

Burwarton Agricultural Show

The 125th Burwarton Agricultural show takes place 4 August 2016 in Burwarton, Shropshire. The event has won many awards including the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service which was created in 2002 during Queen Elizabeth II Golden Jubilee, in order to recognize excellence in Voluntary Services carried out by groups in the community.

The show includes displays of Livestock pigs, Poultry and Horses. Judging of Pig classes with the Kune Kune pig Society providing active demonstrations of Pig Handling and a sheep-shearing competition. In the main arena there are Magnificent Shire Horses Doing Ploughing Demonstrations, Show Jumping, the Hawkeye Falconry Display, the Devils Horsemen Cossack trick riding, a vintage Tractor Parade, Vintage Land Rovers, decorated Heavy Horses, Mounted Fancy Dress, a Wild West Spectacular, the Young Farmers Tug o’War, The Royal Logistic Corps musical ensemble, Show Jumping, the Bob Hoag Sheep dog display, The White Helmets Royal Signals Motorcycle display Team, A Cavalcade of Vintage tractors courtesy of Bridgnorth Vintage Machinery Club, a parade of decorated Heavy Horses, grand Parade of Livestock and Horses, a Grand Parade of Carriages, Parade of Foxhounds and the Inter Hunt relay team, A sheep-shearing competition will be taking place. The Knowles Vintage Diary will also be demonstrating. There is also a vintage Bentley and the KLSI Military Vehicle Display. There are also lots of Stationary Engines on Display.

Trade stands, include agricultural machinery, food, shopping, crafts, conservation, handicrafts, horticulture, home produce and Honey. Other attractions included the opportunity of taking an alpaca on a mini-trek around the Mill Pool in the conservation area, the Knowles Vintage Diary, a vintage Bentley and the KLSI Military Vehicle Display. There were also plenty of vintage Tractors and Stationary Engines on Display. The British Ironwork Centre, created a pop-up charity garden featuring metalwork flowers and There was also a Scarecrow trail raising funds for Oak Farm in Ditton Priors.

There is also plenty to eat and drink, The public catering facilities include local food producers, G&R Tudge from Richards Castle, Keysells Farm from Tenbury Wells and P Faulkner from Richards Castle. Severn Valley Roasts with their popular pig roast, Ascari from Hereford, providing dining facilities, and the Ludlow Brewing Company providing bar facilities in the Members Pavilion. There is also Entertainment for the children at various times throughout the day, including the Jill Fielding Band, The Bell Inn Brass Band, Puppetree – Punch & Judy show, Magic Russ and the Itchy Feet Appalacian dance group

Posted in books

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

have recently read Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, a two-part West End stage play written by Jack Thorne based on an original new story by Thorne, J.K. Rowling and John Tiffany. It is the eighth story set in the Harry Potter universe and is set nineteen years after the events of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, During which Voldemort was defeated at the Battle of Hogwarts. The story follows Harry Potter, who is now an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband, to Ginny Weasley and father of three school-age children: James Sirius, Albus Severus, and Lily Luna. Hermione Granger, now Minister of Magic, has married Ron Weasley – who has inherited Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes – and has two children: Rose and Hugo, who go by the double-barrelled surname Granger-Weasley. Meanwhile Draco Malfoy is a Widower , following the death of his wife Astoria, and his son Scorpius is dogged by rumours that he to is secretly Voldemort’s son.

Harry’s youngest son Albus Severus Potter finds himself Sorted into Slytherin House at Hogwarts school of Magic and Wizardry where he befriends Delphi Diggory, Amos’s niece and caretaker, and also befriends Draco Malfoy’s son Scorpius. Meanwhile the Ministry of Magic confiscates an illegal and very powerful device from Theodore Nott (a previous Death Eater). So Despite initial reservations Albus and Scorpius decide to get hold of this banned device from the Ministry of Magic in order to change the past and right past tragedies. However this is harder than they thought and their initial reservations prove well founded when it has unforeseen repercussions which alter the present and makes things worse.

Following this, Harry Potter becomes convinced that Scorpius is a bad influence on his Son so he splits Albus and Scorpius up. However This does not go well either and Albus and Scorpius decide to use it again in secret to try and repair the damage, unfortunately they find that meddling with events causes even more chaos and they discover that it could also inadvertently bring about the return of the dark Lord Voldemort and usher in a new era of Dark Magic…