Every week BARBARA FISHER looks at issues that affect us all – the issues that get you talking. You can join in by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
WELL DONE to all those involved in Culture Bite, the excellent Arts and Literature Festival which ends on Tuesday.
A mind-boggling range of activities have been held in our libraries, theatres, parks and adult education centres. It has included author talks, Bollywood dancing and art classes.
There was even a Girls on Tour Afternoon Tea, with five successful female authors sharing their thoughts – and presumably cakes – which sounded right up my street. Sadly, I was otherwise engaged.
I did however did get to hear Jeanette Winterson, the author of Oranges Are Not the Only Fruit, at the Compass Theatre. She was an excellent speaker, talking on the Reformation of Marriage. Five hundred years since England broke away from the Catholic Church she imagined another reformation: the ‘traditional union of human beings’.
She was unflinching in question time – nothing was out of bounds. There was a wide and lively discussion. Before arriving, she had asked whether there would be a roving microphone. She said she was told: “Oh no – in Hillingdon we shout!”
I asked her (loudly) about recent reports that pornography is damaging how boys view girls, and she said yes, like many of us, she was concerned that young children were getting their sex education this way, which sadly excluded love and affection, vital in any relationship.
Please Hillingdon Council, continue to organise Culture Bite. Next year I’m arranging my diary around it.
If you missed Victoria and Abdul at the cinema it’s not too late, as The Beck Theatre in Hayes is showing it on Monday November 13 at 7.30pm. It’s many years since I’ve gone to the cinema twice to see the same film but this one impressed me that much. It is poignant – surprisingly funny in parts – and beautifully shot.
Bm@il Good Service Awards this week go to (roll of drums) … the polite and helpful workers at the Civic Amenity Site in Harefield, and at The Alderbourne Unit at Hillingdon Hospital. Both institutions have been commended for their staff ’s welcoming attitude, including giving offers of help, without being asked.
The wooden spoon goes to the idiots who vandalised the new pond in front of the visitors’ centre at Cranford Park in Hayes, which was created by volunteers.
Not nearly the same level of awfulness, but a wooden teaspoon to all the shops that gave me old £1 coins in my change, the day before they ceased to be legal tender!
Culture bite: Barbara saw author Jeanette Winterson at the Compass Theatre, Ickenham, as part of the Hillingdon Arts and Literature Festival