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Friday, April 10th, 2015

Quality Television that Packed a Punch

I watched the BBC3 drama Murdered by My Boyfriend over Easter. Having missed it completely when first broadcast in June last year, I had been alerted to it after seeing the equally excellent follow up documentary on the same channel, Beaten by My Boyfriend.

Both deal head on with the increasingly troubling matter of domestic violence

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Tuesday, March 31st, 2015

Learning From Ross?

There was a very interesting article in the Sunday Times in which Benji Wilson talked of the relevance of Winston Graham’s Poldark stories, as currently serialised on TV, to today. He wrote

“its story of a radical hero battling greedy bankers still resonates”.

He also quoted Karen Thrussell, executive producer of the TV series, who said:

“There is timelessness

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Friday, February 27th, 2015

Icings on Cakes

I have two significant events to share this week. Firstly, I now have a copy of a book. Not just any book, but:

“From Then ‘Til Now – The Story of Chelmsley Wood”

and a cracking addition to the canon of local heritage publications it is, splendidly structured, richly illustrated, easy to read and infused with

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Friday, February 13th, 2015

Reversing Home Ownership Trends

What will be the hot issue in the forthcoming election, the economy, Europe, the welfare system or immigration?

There is another topic I would like to see at the forefront of debate because I would like my own head around it, and it relates to each of those four topics in one way or another, that

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Friday, January 30th, 2015

An Apple A Day

Details of a study, released this week, show that the growth in obesity rates amongst the young in England is ‘levelling off’. The number of children being overweight or obese had at one point been increasing by 8% per year but is now remaining relatively static.

This is hardly good news, though, because over a third of

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Thursday, January 15th, 2015

Happy (and Optimistic) New Year

Firstly, a belated Happy New Year to all.

The New Year has started on extremely positive notes. Firstly Nick Clegg visited the Greater Birmingham and Solihull LEP to give the sub-region some money to invest. The subsequent press release said:

“Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has today joined private and public sector directors from the GBSLEP board

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Friday, December 5th, 2014

Time for a Rethink on HS2??

The HS2 line from Birmingham to London is starting to look out of date already and it is not set to open until 2026 at the earliest.

The  Central Japan Railway Company is also working on a high speed line over a not dissimilar distance, and due to open in 2027. This will link Tokyo and

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Friday, November 21st, 2014

Every One A Winner

This Monday saw the presentation of the Solihull Civic Honours 2014, recognising the dedication, commitment and endeavours of people who make Solihull a better place. Each of the nine Awards presented went to a fully deserving winner from our community sector, whose achievements should be recognised and we should celebrate their success with them.

The winners

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Friday, November 7th, 2014

Shove Up, We All Have To Take Up Less Room Here

It is very sobering to read of a study suggesting that 14% of the humans that have ever lived are alive today, and talks in terms of a need for fertility control,  see: and

The fact is that the human race is highly successful at survival and reproduction but is in danger of outgrowing the resources of

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Thursday, October 23rd, 2014

Pay As You Go? Why Not?

In a month’s time the way we punters will pay to use the southbound Queen Elizabeth II Bridge and northbound Dartford Tunnel, as the M25 navigates the Thames, will change. There will be no more queuing to pull up at a booth and grope for change. When we venture that way, we will sail through

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