Anyone for Cakes?

I know its coming to the end of the summer when Lakenheath Conservatives have the second of their annual cake stalls in Lakenheath high street on Saturday morning, the first is in May the start of the Summer; a strange way to mark the seasons but there you go. As always I had a managerial role in the baking of some of the cakes, which is probably best!

The stall raises money for the branch to help fund our survey canvass campaign so we can get out there and understand the issues that people are wanting us to tackle with their hard earned Council tax. I also use the morning as an informal surgery with many people coming up to chat about the issues of the day and Saturday was no exception as I debated the economic situation with a socialist for whom Blair and Brown were too right wing, the only thing we could agree on was what a mess they had made of the economy but we clearly had quite different solutions to the problem.

Check out my flickr feed to see a photo of me carrying the refreshments out to the ladies on the stall, I showed this to my partner and she made some comment, I think it was I am always making the tea and helping out, well something like that but I could not quite hear what she was saying!

Sufffolk’s welcomes the Paralympic Flame

On Friday I attended the Suffolk Civic reception to welcome the Paralympic Flame as it makes its way into the county for a bank holiday weekend of celebration and entertainment. It was collected by local Needham Market artist Amy Nettleton during a special ceremony at Trafalgar Square in London and transported back to Suffolk in a miner’s lantern.

After the civic reception I popped down to Needham Lakes where 1000’s of people had a gathered to take part of an afternoon festival of free entertainment and sport; it was a real party atmosphere and great to see so many disabled people taking part in the activities.

At 5:15 I was interviewed by Leslie Dolphin from BBC Radio Suffolk as a part of their live outside Broadcast; we discussed the weekend of sport that was taking place so people could go along as see the range of disabled sporting activities and a taster of the Paralympics ahead. After we had finished I have a quick chat with Suffolk Paralympic athlete Brian Alldis who was the star attraction in the broadcast and wished him good luck for the games; later on, he led taking the flame on a lantern procession around the town, before returning to the Lakes where there was a great spectacular fire work display to close the event.

Having watched a truely wonderful Olympic games where the very best sports people took part I can’t wait to watch the Paralympic games where the bravest sports people are taking part; come on Team GB.

The Cannon and Ball Show

On Monday I took a trip down memory last and drove my father to Great Yarmouth the see Cannon and Ball at the Britannia Pier Theatre. Towards the end of their second half act Booby Cannon talked about their 50 year partnership in showbusiness and my mind drifted back to their heyday and indeed Great Yarmouth’s as a Seaside resort. In the early 80’s Cannon and Ball celebrated 20 years in showbusiness with back to back summer seasons at the North Pier, Blackpool and then the Britannia Pier, Great Yarmouth 3 months, six days a week, two shows a night with a matinee on a Wednesday and Saturday, sell out Box office breaking summer seasons records and that visual memory of being a part of  a second house crowd, we always went to the second house, having to be parted to let the first house out.

Gone are the full summer seasons, they are appearing in Great Yarmouth on just two nights during the Summer, gone are the variety acts that used to pack the first half of their shows and gone too are the full houses, just as those week long holidays in slightly ropey boarding houses and hotels to the English seaside. Perhaps today also gone is variety as their practice it, but what is not gone is their sheer brilliance and love of what they do. Their act is bang up to day with what few jokes they do tell, for their act was never build on jokes, being bang up to date, with Google, facebook and my space mentioned with along with Booby Ball knowingly turning to the audience suggesting I’m saying these things but know not of what I speak.

Their act is of course a mixture of the putting down of the little man of Abbott and Costello and the taking down of the sophisticated man of Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis but they are perhaps the greatest double act this county has seen in a blood line of great double acts. From Flannigan and Allen, to Jewel and Warriss, Mike and Bernie Winters and Morecombe and Wise, in my youth I had the privilege to see both Mike and Bernie Winters and Morecambe and Wise live on stage but only watched the others on video. Of course Morecombe and Wise conquered television in a way no other variety theatre double act did or has since including Cannon and Ball; but Cannon and Ball command the stage like no act before them, comedy, pathos, audience participation and genuine friendship, today they have distilled 50 years of material into the sort of double act comedic timing only belonging to the greats. There are today great comedians from Jimmy Carr to Peter Kay but perhaps along with Ken Dodd, Cannon and Ball are the end of a Era.

At the end of their 75 minute tour de force on Monday the audience spontaneously rose to its feet in salute to greatness, if you ever get the chance go see true comic genius at work, do go.

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