Issue04 The How To Issue
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CURATED BY Faye Adams COVER IMAGE BY Matt Pilling - Design of the Festival Pavilion for The Festival of Making – Taster Day
Blackburn is Open is a creative regeneration scheme funded by Arts Council England and backed by Blackburn with Darwen Council. Entrepreneur and designer Wayne Hemingway MBE is the creative director. Its ethos is the town’s motto, Arte et Labore, which translates as ‘by art and by labour’ or ‘by skill and hard work’. Blackburn has a
ILLUSTRATIONS Katie Ryan katieryart katiery.com CONTRIBUTORS Faye Adams Stephanie Jessop teainyourtwenties.com
proud history of art, industry and innovation. In recognition of this, Blackburn is Open aims to bring together and support a creative community in the heart of the town centre. It also works to make under-utilised spaces and empty shops available to artists and entrepreneurs, support new businesses and celebrate the creative industries.
PHOTOGRAPHY Derren Poole phunkography Caroline Eccles
DESIGN SPONSORED BY Source Creative sourcecreative.co.uk
CONTACT Blackburn is Open, 65 King William Street, Blackburn, BB1 7HU 01254 667130 Blackburnisopen.co.uk email@example.com blackburnisopen
INSIDE Issue04 4/ How to be a philanthropist Follow in the footsteps of patrons of the past by supporting big causes in small ways
18/ How to unleash your wild Side Blackburn’s wild swimmers on dipping a toe into the latest craze
7/ How to make a cup of tea Blackburn born Tim Westwell of Pukka Tea gets the brews in
22/ How to take a photograph Graduates from University College Blackburn give us some guidance
10/ How to throw a party Events company Gypsy Carrot reveal some of their top tips 12/ The Festival of Making – Taster Day The one day introduction to the Festival of Making will celebrate Making in all its forms
28/ How to light up your life Create a beautiful lantern for the Festival of Light 30/ How to do Edinburgh Cultural ambassador Stephanie Jessop tells us how to spot the gems
14/ How to bake your own bread Step by step instructions from community café BB1 for Life
The How To Issue By Skill and Hard Work (BS&HW) is a quarterly publication celebrating the creative talents of people who live, work or play in Blackburn. In this issue we have gone back to basics and with the help of our creative
population we have produced some guides to harness your own skill and hard work. From how to be a modern day philanthropist to jumping in at the deep end of exercise with wild swimming. Give them a go and let us know the results!
HOW TO BE A PHILANTHROPIST Your guide to making big things happen in small ways. Cotton to Gold opening at Blackburn Museum and Art Gallery is a showcase of the world class art collections and rare artefacts amassed by Victorian mill owners and entrepreneurs.
cultural institutions they’d helped establish. As a result East Lancashire’s museum collections contain the unexpected and the exotic. Blackburn rope manufacturer Robert Edward Hart left what has been described as ‘an almost entire history of the written word’ from Assyrian tablets dating back to c.2000 BC to works by William Morris and Edward Burne-Jones. Textile mill owner Thomas Boys Lewis who founded Blackburn Textile Museum bequeathed over 1,000 Japanese prints. While mill owner Arthur C Bowdler whose passion was coleoptery – the study of beetles - left over 2,500 species to Blackburn Museum.
The exhibition reveals how they collected both the exquisite and the unusual from the furthest corners of the earth.
Lancashire Loom, manufactured by Pemberton & Co. in Burnley, 1894 Queen Street Mill, Burnley
But as well as spending their glittering fortunes on Turner watercolours, Tiffany vases and llama skin books they shared a sense of duty to pay back the towns that helped generate their fortunes. These men helped establish libraries, museums, churches and schools to educate both culturally and as they saw it morally improve, ordinary working folk.
Earlier this year some of these donations were displayed in the acclaimed exhibition Cotton to Gold at central London’s Two Temple Place. Over 30,000 visitors made the trip to see the works which have now transferred to Blackburn.
And their charity continued even after death when several donated their vast, sometimes priceless collections to the
J.M.W. Turner, Tynemouth c.1822, watercolour
Kunisada, The actor Nakamura Shikan IV, c. 1854, coloured woodblock print
But if this show illustrates the philanthropic past of Blackburn and its neighbours then what about its future?
Stan Laurel’s former home by investors keen not to see it fall into disrepair. Websites like Kickstarter or the Big Arts Give list causes appealing for support and in return those who pledge are often given a ‘thank you’ such as a badge, signed photo or CD.
Today across the country financial challenges are encouraging many arts and community organisations to look again at how they can raise funds.
And slightly differently is the concept of giving circles, big in the states but just starting to catch on here. The most talked about is Detroit SOUP where people pay an entrance fee and listen to a pitch for a project to improve the local community.
Philanthropy popular in the US, has been identified as one way that people can support the things that they value. Arthur C Bowdler’s Beetle Collection
But not everyone has a spare Tiffany vase at home or Bill Gates style megabucks to donate. So how do you show you care and want more of the things you love, in short how do you become a modern day philanthropist?
Then whilst sharing a meal (of soup as the name suggests) they then collectively decide which project takes home the money. They’ve supported community libraries, jewellery making and a one-man Shakespeare company.
Membership or Friends schemes are favoured by some such as the National Trust that has over 3.6 million members. Crowd funding is another method growing in popularity. Successful examples include the recent purchase of
So while you may not be the next Arthur C Bowdler there are plenty of opportunities for you to make big things happen in small ways.
Change to Missal written by Johannes de Berlandia c.1400. Lombardy, ink on parchment from Robert Edward hart’s collection
Cotton to Gold runs from September 12 until November 14 at Blackburn Museum and Art Gallery. Museum St, Blackburn, Lancashire BB1 7AJ 01254 667130
The Social Enterprise
Blackburn band ‘Edgarville’ received pledges of £3,400 towards their debut album and a European tour.
Hallouminate was a night that brought together entrepreneurs and potential patrons.
‘Edgarville’ is frontman Ed Hall, 24, and drummer Rob Frankland, 20.
Imagine Dragons’ Den over a three course Mediterranean meal and you’ve got Hallouminate.
They describe their sound as melodic indie with heavy punk and emo influences.
The evening brought 40 diners together to watch nine potential pitches from those just starting out in business or with an idea in mind.
After embarking on recording their first album and planning a European tour they began to struggle with self-financing and decided to embark on a crowdfunding bid.
Pitches included everything from a DJ night to the setting up of an artist’s network linking artists with galleries and curators.
“I’d seen it work for other bands and believed that I’d met enough creative, likeminded people who believed in supporting music that it might be possible,” said Ed.
Diners voted that the £200 funding pot raised by the entrance fee should got to two contenders, Adam DJ Hazard Watson and Hafsa Siddiq.
Their target was £3,000 and they managed £500 in two weeks.
Adam pledged to use his for equipment to build his DJing business and Hafsa to continue her work at her fledgling design business Haﬃ-Chan.
After that it slowly came to a ‘grinding halt’. So three days ahead of the deadline they emailed everyone they knew, flooded Facebook with appeals and plugged it at gigs.
The night was the brainchild of Rachel Gilkes a former Blackburn University College who has set up FoodLab to encourage enterprising activity, using food as the vehicle to educate and inspire people.
With just 11 hours to go they smashed the target and raised a further £400.
Her next two events will take place at the Festival of Making and they include Disco Soupe that will reuse food that would otherwise have been thrown away to feed festival goers. And Fabricate another crowdfunding event that will bring Makers together with potential backers.
Support came from all over the world including the US and Canada. “I want to say a huge thank you to everyone who took the time to get involved” added Ed. facebook /EdgarvilleUK
facebook /foodlablancs blackburnisopen.co.uk/events/the-festival-of-making/
HOW TO MAKE A CUP OF TEA Pukka Tea’s Tim Westwell gets the brews in
Encouraging people to make the leap into the unknown and achieve their potential is something Tim Westwell, cofounder of the tea brewing heavy weight Pukka Teas, is passionate about.
And it all started with a ‘leap into the unknown’. Tim’s interest in natural and alternative therapies led him to putting an advert in a newspaper for a business partner looking to grow a business ‘in a healthy way’. The only responder was Sebastian Pole a fellow devotee to natural therapies and Pukka Tea was born.
In fact the boy from Blackburn whose devotion to his beloved Rovers and Blackburn nightlife put pay to his intent to become an architect, has done nothing if not achieved his potential in more than uncharted waters.
Tim grew up near to the home of Blackburn Rovers, Ewood Park. In fact he lived so close that during games the illumination was such they could turn off their own lights and happily go about their business, he jokes.
But architecture’s loss is tea drinkers’ gain and also to anyone who thinks that there’s more to a healthy lifestyle than hitting the gym once in a blue moon.
“I like to make it back for the Boxing Day match and catch up with friends and old school mates.”
Pukka Tea is now a thriving global business that exports to over 40 countries. Its range of teas and health supplements products are all based on the belief that nature can play a major role in answering many of the health challenges facing us today.
The former St Wilfrids pupil left Blackburn for a degree in construction at the then Liverpool Polytechnic after dreams of a career in architecture were waylaid.
After returning from some time travelling, the recession of the 80s led him to follow many of his peers south in search of work and he found himself driving a van in Bristol.
Operating out of his spare room for the first few years Tim says they could never have envisaged how their message would resonate with people and the success of Pukka Teas.
A career in software sales and business reorganisation followed but at 26 he developed a severe back condition and was told he faced a life on pain killers.
“I have to pinch myself to make sure I’m not dreaming,” he said. “I’m not into building a business for the sake of it, the purpose was to spread the message of herbal health. Now when I’m travelling round the world I feel blessed because I am living my dream: following my passion and meeting others with similar dreams and aspirations.”
“I got really depressed especially as they made me sick and spaced out every time I took them. So I decided to find out if there was an alternative and looked at what nutrition and herbs could do for me.”
“It sounds a bit hippyish and not very Blackburn but there you go, he jokes”.
“What particularly helped was I felt empowered because I was doing something for myself rather than taking pills.
‘Hippyish’ or not the commitment to his vision has seen Pukka grow to employee over 70 people in the UK alone.
“One of our main goals at Pukka is to encourage people to understand their health and empower them to take control rather than handing it over to a doctor. After all the knowledge of herbs has been around for 1000s of years but at some point we started to lose touch with that.”
It also takes its social responsibility seriously with a totally organic product, carbon neutral status, financial support for nature and wildlife campaigns and a commitment to train and educate growers. And Tim has words of encouragement for anyone else thinking of following their dreams.
This episode sparked off a lifelong interest in nutrition, alternative therapies and preventative health and was what led in 2001 to that fateful newspaper ad.
“Go for it, step over that edge and explore your potential.” pukkaherbs.com
Timâ€™s recipe for a natural cuppa IN GRE DIE N TS
A handful of blackberries One bunch of elderberries Elderberries and blackcurrants should be coming around in abundance this time of year. ME THO D
Mix them into a juicy mush and add hot water. This combination is rich in vitamin C and antioxidants, a great protective mix for the winter that lies ahead. There even some early research that suggests elderberries could be helpful in guarding against flu.
Gypsy Carrot is the events company behind some of Blackburn’s biggest and most ambitious events. Set up by young entrepreneurs Emily Lord, 22 and Sam Fittock 22 they have steadily built a reputation for throwing some very memorable parties. Their launch event, a Halloween ball in a disused church saw the building decked out in foraged wood and greenery. Two indoor festivals called The Pilgrimage I and II followed that aimed to bring the festival experience complete with stalls, fire eaters and face-painting indoors. Now joined by local artist Sophie Skellern they share their tips for making your event go with a bang.
DRESS THE SET! We use whatever we can find. Scraps of material, old pieces of wood it can all go a long way with a creative mind. We feel strongly about recycling: one man’s waste is another man’s art! There are plenty of scrap stores that sell old materials and paint and this not only can spark unique ideas but can save you a lot of cash! We built our fully function traveling bar we named the ‘Gypsy Tavern’ from recycled wood and used old beams and floorboards to create a rustic theme at our Pilgrimage event.
ATTENTION TO DETAIL IS KEY Every element is as important as the next, no matter how small. Going that extra mile may not be obvious to the majority of people but a good event should look and feel effortless to the audience. Leave no wires on show and try and hide the strings to the best of your ability, you want people to feel fully submersed in the environment you are trying to create.
HOW TO THR THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX Have fun exploring new ideas, remember an event is a piece of art – enjoy exploring ways to express yourself. We’re constantly trying to conjure up new ways to connect to our audience, be it through interactive displays, actors and performers or even smells. Use the five senses to create a playground for people to explore, the possibilities are endless!
TEAM WORK Having a strong reliable team around you is crucial! There are so many elements involved – we simply couldn’t do it without having a talented, trustworthy team. And if you’re doing something enjoyable and exciting people will jump and the chance to get involved to gain experience or just for fun.
ENJOY IT! All the organising can be stressful but it’s important to remember the reason behind wanting to do the event in the first place - events can be an amazing way to bring people together and spread positive messages. We’ve already seen an impact from our previous events which have seen connections made and new exciting projects emerging as a result on to the local arts scene. We are really excited to see what the future has in store.
Facebook /gypsycarrotproductions Twitter @GypsyCarrot 10
OW A PARTY
SATURDAY 12TH SEPTEMBER 2015 10AM–8PM BL ACKBURN TOWN CENTRE With the motto, Arte et Labore (By Skill and Hard Work), Blackburn is the natural place to hold Britain’s first National Festival of Making. An event dedicated to the art of Making – from making music to 3D printing, cooking up delicious treats to making art. It will celebrate the wealth of talented creatives in
and around Blackburn building strongly on its heritage of hard work, skill and creativity. Launching with a taster day on Saturday, September 12 it will get into full swing next year in October 2016 with an ambitious programme of new commissions, workshops, activities and events.
This year’s one day introduction will see a range of events taking place across the town centre including workshops inside our very own Festival Pavilion (think adult sized meccano meets chic shed). The Museum Street pop up will house the Fixperts who’ll be running a series of workshops following on from their highly successful event at the V&A in London.
Other highlights include upcycling workshops that will take place underneath the art installation created by Blackburn events company Gypsy Carrot from scaffolding and found materials. There will also be a drop in café with a conscience called Disco Soupe run by social enterprise Food Lab which will turn food that would otherwise have gone to waste in a feast fit for kings.
Local menders and makers from HackBurn will be collaborating with artist Hwa Young Jung (an award winning multidisciplinary designer) in an exciting fusion of technical and practical meets digital and innovation. And Blackburn with come alive to the sound of music as Blackburn’s buskers are given specially designed ‘Busking Stations’ to perform at.
Rounding off the day there’ll be a crowd-funding cum Dragons Den event at Liz n Lil’s café with a vegetarian three course meal which will see creatives pitch their ingenious ideas for funding. So join us for this one day mini festival that will aims to inspire people to learn old and new skills from the rich heritage of Blackburn’s tradition of manufacturing and making.
Visit festivalofmaking.co.uk 12
Join artist Hwa Young Jung in collaboration with Hackburn in introducing young people to the limitless possibilities of digital art.
Meet textile artist Khadija Ingar while she explores ‘flower work’ using cotton, linen and range of fibres including gold work in response to the Cotton to Gold exhibition. Family friendly workshops throughout the day.
WHERE Blackburn Museum & Art Gallery
MAKING FO OD
FoodLab hosts Disco Soupe bringing people together to prepare food that would otherwise have been thrown away, all to the sounds of a DJ set.
FoodLab hosts Fabricate, a crowdfunding event and shared meal for Makers to compete for funding by pitching their ingenious ideas. Tickets: £10 available from the venue.
Liz ‘n’ Lil’s
M AKING M USIC
Check out great music by up and coming musicians at the pop up busking stations located around the town centre to showcase and celebrate Blackburn talent!
Experience an interactive art installation by Gypsy Carrot made from recycled materials will take up residence on Museum Street and will be the inspiration for upcycling workshops throughout the day.
M AKING ARCHITECTURE WHERE
Join the ‘Fixperts’ for workshops and demonstrations in the specially designed architectural pop up. Fixperts are designers and communicators who think up creative ways to ‘fix’ everyday problems.
DJ Dave Haslam’s new book, Life After Dark, takes us from viceridden Victorian venues to acid house and beyond. Spend an evening with Dave discussing and celebrating the value of venues, local and nationwide, past and present. tickets: kinggeorgeshall.com
Friday 11th Sep 6.3pm Blakey’s Bar, Northgate
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Maker Pavillion // Museum Street
BB1 for Life is a café with a conscience. The Blackburn café acts as a community and arts centre bringing people together from all walks of life. Run by volunteers it hosts everything from a book club to a women’s peace building course. They also sell homemade cakes, bread
and light meals. And offer bread making courses to groups or individuals. For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org telephone 01254 447027 or just drop by 72 Northgate, Blackburn, BB2 1AA
BB1 for Life’s recipe for olive and rosemary focaccia bread INGRE DIE NTS 6-8 olives chopped or sliced Two sprigs of rosemary. 40ml of olive oil, plus extra for drizzling 15 grams of dried yeast 10 grams of salt (and some sea salt for the top) One tsp. of sugar 500 grams of strong white flour 350ml of warm water
ME THOD Stir the yeast into 300ml of the warm water and set aside. Then put the flour, salt and sugar in a mixing bowl and add the olive oil. Mix using your hands.
Once they are combined, make a well in the middle and add the water and yeast mixture gradually and mix so that it forms a dry dough. Add the remaining warm water incorporating it into the dough as you go. Once it starts to get sticky stop. Fold the dough in on itself and turn the bowl at 90 degrees with each fold. Do this for around five minutes or until the dough forms a soft ball.
Rub a little olive oil into your work surface to stop the bread sticking to it while you knead it. Stretch the dough apart and then knead into itself for around five minutes until the dough is smooth.
Oil your mixing bowl and place the dough back in. Put cling film over the bowl and leave for around 90 minutes to rise.
Sprinkle flour over a flat baking tray to stop the dough from sticking and spread it out so itâ€™s fairly even. Press your fingers in almost to the bottom - this will leave dimples in the dough for the oil to collect in.
Sprinkle on the olives along with rosemary leaves. Add a pinch of sea salt and drizzle across plenty of olive oil. Bake at 220C (or 200C fan) for 20 minutes until golden brown. Slice, serve and enjoy!
Facebook /bb1forlife Twitter @bb1_for_life 15
Thursday, September 3 DRINK & DRAW (every second Thursday)
Thursday, September 17 ART SPACE (every third Thursday)
Saturday, September 26 GET INVOLVED (every fourth Saturday)
Alternative life drawing session. facebook.com/ drinkanddrawblackburn @drinkanddrawblackburn
A space to get together: to share, perform, associate, create and exhibit- for ALL ages. The Bureau, 6.30-10pm, £3.
Tuesday, September 8 BLACKBURN FILM CLUB
Friday, September 18 THE DEVIL’S VIOLIN COMPANY THE FORBIDDEN DOOR
A chance to meet some of the team, have a look round the building, and find out more about them and their vision for The Bureau Centre for the Arts. The Bureau, 11-2pm, email@example.com
Last Exit to Brooklyn. The Bureau, Victoria Street, Blackburn 7.30pm, £3. For details: facebook.com/blackburnfilmclub
A visceral combination of live music and dynamic storytelling, Acclaimed storyteller Daniel Morden, joined by virtuoso musicians. The Bureau, 7.30pm, £7 / £5 (concs), ages 12+.
Wednesday, September 9 STEEL PAN BAND COMMUNITY SESSIONS (every Wednesday)
Friday, September 25 ADMIT ALL (part of Lancashire LGBT Film Festival)
Learn to play the steel pans children and adult’s session, 4pm. firstname.lastname@example.org Thursday, September 10 MUSIC SPACE
A carefully curated selection of LGBT films and art hosted by Blackburn Film celebrating LGBT culture. Opening of week long exhibition focusing on Identity with live performances and other art based media. Followed by screening of coming out drama I Killed My Mother with live music by Ascension from 10pm The Bureau, 5.30pm til late, £10 / £5 (concs).
Community music ensembleall ages/instruments/abilities welcome! Family event with café. The Bureau, 4.30-6.30pm email@example.com Saturday-Sunday, September 12-13 BLACKBURN HERITAGE FESTIVAL History comes alive around Blackburn and Darwen over the festival weekend with activities and events including a vintage fairground, the Mobile Museum of Obsolete Technology and a talk by The Sewing Bee’s Patrick Grant. Town centre, various.
The Devil’s Violin Company
HERITAGE FESTIVAL AT THE BUREAU Craft demonstrations, stalls, activities and self-led heritage treasure trail, pinhole/ victorian style sepia photos, screenings of the historic Mitchell and Kenyon films, ‘Painting in a day’ event for artists to create a mini masterpiece, 10am - 4pm.
CONFESSIONAL One day music festival in a beautiful gothic church. Howling Rhythm Soul DJs with full Brass Section, The Tea Street, Matt Abbot, The Pink Teens, John McCullagh & The Escorts plus DJS and stalls. Holy Trinity Church, Blackburn, BB1 5DQ, Midday-12am, £15 facebook.com/ confessionalfestival Tuesday, September 29 BLACKBURN FILM CLUB A Single Man. The Bureau, Victoria Street, Blackburn 7.30pm, £3. For details: facebook.com/ blackburnfilmclub
Saturday-Sunday, October 3-4 FUN PALACES
Wednesday, November 4 Saturday, November 14 PAPERGIRL BLACKBURN
Everyone an artist- everyone a scientist. Free arts and science sessions all day for all ages to come and join in. funpalaces.co.uk The Bureau, 10am-4pm.
The return of the international art phenomenon Paper Girl which started out on the streets of Berlin. It will see an exhibition of artwork donated by local artists followed by a mass distribution of artwork on the last Saturday. The Bureau, various times.
Thursday, October 8 ‘INSTRUCTIONS FOR AMERICAN SERVICEMEN IN BRITAIN’
Blackburn Heritage Festival
Sunday, November 8, 15, 22, 29 LANTERN MAKING WORKSHOP
It’s 1942 and a horde of Yankee servicemen have just arrived in England - where the locals speak a strange dialect, boil all their food, and talk endlessly about the weather. Darwen Library Theatre Tickets: £8 / £6, Suitable for 12+
Make a beautiful lantern from paper and Willow to carry in the parade at Blackburn Festival of Light in December. The Bureau, 10-4pm, donation £1. Thursday, November 19 CHRISTMAS LIGHTS SWITCH ON
Saturday, October 24 Wednesday, October 28 HALF TERM FAMILY FUN AND CHILDREN’S ARTS & CRAFT DAYS
Saturday, November 21 THEATRE: RECKLESS SLEEPERS THE LAST SUPPER
The Bureau. For details: facebook.com/ TheBureauBlackburn
Internationally acclaimed part performance, part meal, made up of half-remembered words written on rice paper! The Bureau, 8pm, £8 / £6 (concs), ages 16+.
Friday, October 30 THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA WITH LIVE SCORE BY MINIMA
The Phantom of The Opera
Monday November 23 Saturday, November 28 ‘ALICE’
Starts at 7pm with themed bar and opera singer. Performance starts at 8.30pm. Come dressed to impress! The Bureau, £10 / £8 (concs).
Launch of chocolatier Danny Colletta’s new collection with an Alice in Wonderland themed exhibition and tea party experience. facebook.com/ ChocolatByDanielColetta
Further details at
Ever fancied dipping a toe in the craze of wild swimming?
Right across the country groups are popping up of people who want to ditch the artificial environment of an indoor pool for an altogether more natural experience. Wild Swimming in rivers, streams and lakes has grown at such a rate that The Outdoor Swimming Society now has over 24,000 members. And a freshwater pool has even been opened at London’s Kings Cross with plans for another on the Thames.
Closer to home Blackburn based Eoin Gallagher is a member of Accrington Wild Swimmers. The book researcher traces his interest in wild swimming back to when he lived in Galway in Ireland and often went for a dip after going rowing on the River Corrib. “This was during the 70’s and early 80’s and the beaches where a lifeguard patrolled were few and far between so even our local beaches were wild. “But it’s only in the last few years that I decided to get back into it. I met up with a wild swimming group and it was really nice to share the fun and excitement of exploring a new place to swim.”
“It’s really quite different to being in a pool. The water doesn’t have chlorine in, although there are sometimes fish!
“We only stayed in for a few seconds, but loved it. Little did I know then that it would be the start of a new adventure and hobby for me.”
“It can be really refreshing to take a dip and feel really connected to the environment around you. It’s also a great way to get fit, and build up stamina.”
Both swimmers are keen to stress that while outdoor swimming can’t be beaten safety is paramount for anyone wanting to give it a go and that doing your research as being prepared is vital.
A filmmaker who runs Huckleberry Films with partner Dave, Caroline says she decided to take up wild swimming after taking a New Years’ Day dip with a friend.
“Of course when you swim in rivers you have to be aware of currents, wind, flood waters and the possibilities of being trapped by underwater impediments,” said Eoin.
A favourite place of the group is Brungerley near Clitheroe because it offers both a place to picnic, walks and easy access to the river where there are shallows for children and deeper channels for more able swimmers. Fellow group member, Caroline Eccles also recalls great days out at Gaddings Dam in Todmorden, venturing in to the sea at Cleveleys and Whitby, and even a trip up to Loch Lomond for the Great Scottish Swim. “We’ve visited some really beautiful places, and enjoyed swims even in the rain,” says Caroline from Blackburn.
“This is where sharing information with other groups and talking to other wild swimmers becomes important. Get on facebook, find your local groups and it’s also good to go and chat to other swimmers where you see them. “Also keep your eyes on the weather, remember you river shoes and cake and don’t go it alone!”
WHAT TO WEAR? You’ll have more confidence, and be better able to explore, if you have footwear (e.g. old trainers, jelly shoes etc) Remember rocks are very slippery when wet. Never run. Wear goggles, a normal surfing wetsuit, a sleeveless wetsuit top or a specialist triathlon wetsuit will all help you stay warm longer. Make sure you take towels, a picnic rug, midge repellent, suntan lotion, sunhats and plastic bags for all your wet kit. Inflatables are popular but make sure people won’t drift away on them, especially non-swimmers. A proper buoyancy aid (about £40) is safer, and fun too.
WHAT IF THE WATER IS COLD? Water temperatures can vary. Much of the year outdoor waters are 12C – 17°C so try to arrive hot and sweaty. Plan a good hearty walk to get there and wear lots of warm clothes before you arrive. Test the temperature and wade in slowly. Once you’re in the water it takes a few minutes before the cold feeling goes away but don’t stay in too long without a wetsuit! Get out and warm up after 20 minutes or if you start to shiver. Be aware that outdoor swimming in cold water saps body heat. Shivering and teeth-chattering are the first stages of mild hypothermia, so get out of the water and warm up with a combination of warm, dry clothes and activity. Press-ups, starjumps and running up a nearby hill are the quickest!
BE CAUTIOUS Never swim in canals, urban areas, or in rivers straight after a flood. Be cautious of water quality during droughts too. If you are concerned about water quality keep cuts and wounds covered with waterproof plasters and keep your face out of the water – do breast stroke. Don’t swim alone and keep a constant watch on weak swimmers. Always check the depth of the water, even if you visit the same spot regularly. Depths can vary and new underwater obstructions (sand, rocks, branches, rubbish) may have been brought downstream or tipped in.
Advice taken from Wild Swimming – 300 hidden dips published by Wild Things Publishing www.wildswimming.co.uk MORE INFORMATION The Outdoor Swimming Society facebook.com/groups/outdoorswimmingsociety wildswim.com
Remember while Wild Swimming can be an unbeatable experience it is essential to be aware of the dangers and to familiarise yourself with the guidance that has been produced by seasoned swimmers.
Caroline Eccles at Huckleberry Films huckleberryfilms.co.uk
Saturday, Sep 26, 9pm SOUL ALL NIGHTER
Thursday, Nov 12, 8pm STEWART FRANCIS
Saturday, Nov 28, 7pm UK SUBS
The North West’s longest running Soul Night Out.
Live Nation in association with MHA Proudly Presents… Stewart Francis: Pun Gent
The UK Subs are one of the few bands that have the respect of EVERYONE on the punk scene. They maintain and pioneer the true spirit of punk rock, without the compromise and wateringdown that has affected so many of their contemporaries.
Sunday, Oct 4, 2pm BLACKBURN BLUES FESTIVAL Solid Entertainments presents the 5th Annual Blues, Rhythm and Rock Festival. Friday 23 & Saturday, Oct 24 BILL BAILEY Bill Bailey returns to the road next year with his new tour, Limboland
Saturday, Nov 14, 7pm THE LANCASHIRE HOTPOTS 50 Shades of Gravy Tour Friday, Nov 27, 8pm BEARDYMAN: ONE ALBUM PER HOUR Following two sell out runs at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2013 and 2014, Beardyman is proud to present the debut UK tour of his critically acclaimed show, One Album Per Hour.
Saturday, Nov 28, 8pm AN EVENING WITH NOEL FIELDING Noel Fielding is embarking on his first live tour in five years. Expect a magical mix of Noel’s unique brand of stand-up comedy, live animation, music and some of Fielding’s best known TV characters.
BOOKINGS: 0844 847 1664
Graduates from University Centre at Blackburn College share their tips Matthew Savage I’ve been practicing photography for four years now, it started simply as an interest and grew rapidly into not only a career but a passion. I did my first landscape photograph whilst on a university trip to Morecambe Bay and immediately realised this was
the field I wanted to continue in. I could capture a scene exactly how I envisioned it. Landscape photography in some ways is an escape for me. I can set off towards the Lake District or jump on a cheap flight abroad and find beautiful landscapes,
exploration is a huge part of it and I love to travel. I’ll often wait in a location for hours until the light is right or the clouds have cleared, in this period its relaxing to have nothing else going on but the thought of how best to capture the landscape in front of you.
1/ As a landscape photographer you must be prepared to be at a location before sunrise or sunset, these are the best times to capture great light. It can be tough especially through summer with sunrise at 4:30am but it’s always worth it. 2/ Filters can become your best friends when trying to creating dramatic scenes, they will help to remove reflections from water, darken your sky and even add colour. 3/ I often photograph a scene several times in different seasons. Even though you may have been there before, over time it will look completely different. 4/ Being creative is about removing the boundaries we are surrounded by. Who is to say when creating a piece of art that the sky must be blue? facebook /matthewsavagephoto matthewsavagephotography.co.uk
Samantha Nevey Samantha Nevey is a 25-yearold photographer from Darwen. She has recently graduated from Blackburn University College with a degree in photography.
During her final year she undertook a project documenting the work of bee keepers which saw her nominated for the Association of Photographersâ€™ (AOP) student award.
She currently works as a photographer/videographer at JBP Studios.
1/ Change your perspective. Donâ€™t just shoot what you see, change your angle and see your images become more dynamic 2/ Be Prepared. As a photographer you have to be prepared, extra batteries, extra cards and even an extra camera if you can. On a shoot anything can happen so being organised is essential. 3/ Get your work out there. The internet makes it easy to promote your work and get your name out there. There are so many online showcases and competitions that you can take advantage of so make sure to utilise them. 4/ Enjoy it. Most importantly enjoy taking pictures. It might not earn you money but taking the time to shoot what you want to photograph will improve your skill and keep you loving what you do.
Aneeza Ramzan I have been studying photography for the past six years at Blackburn College and the University at Blackburn as well as working at home with my father.
My inspiration came from my father who has a passion for videography and design. I have done a variety of different shoots in the field: location, commercial, landscape, studio,
portrait and fashion. But my main focus in photography is fashion and weddings. I have covered many weddings in the past and enjoy capturing every moment.
1/ Change your perspective. Dedication and perseverance pay off. I visited many places of worship before I found somewhere that was happy for me to take photographs. I eventually found a Blackburn mosque that was really happy for me to show the good work they were doing. I went back many times over six months to get the shots I was after. 2/ Making people comfortable. I like to try and capture people as naturally as I can so I always like to put them at their ease. Stiff looking photographs of people with fake smiles are not going to tell much of a story. 3/ Lighting. Natural light is often the best. Even if youâ€™re taking photographs indoors look for a room that is well lit with plenty of daylight.
The Festival of Light returns this year to illuminate your dark wintery nights. The three day event launching on Thursday, December 10 sees a variety of events including a street market, carol concert, firework display and fire performances. It culminates on Saturday with a lantern parade winding through the streets of Blackburn past a lantern garden and specially lit buildings. Join the fun by following the instructions for your very own lantern. Facebook – search Blackburn Festival of Light.
WH AT YO U WI L L NEED Five 18” & three 24” garden canes (or willow withies) Masking tape Wire Wet strength tissue paper Tape An LED light Diluted PVA glue Coloured tissue, pressed flowers or leaves to decorate
Trim the canes to the required lengths.
Construct a pyramid with three of the 24” canes and attached them to the base securely. Test the corners.
Lay the 18” in a triangular shape and tape the corners securely.
Secure the point of the pyramid with tape.
Take a length of wire approx. 8” and create a loop. Twist the two loose ends together to create a ‘neck’. Tape securely as this is your carrying handle.
Use some of the other canes to fill in the sides of the structure to give some extra support.
Wrap around the frame as neatly and as tightly as possible. Cover with two layers but don’t allow any to dangle inside.
To create a platform for your LED light take a cane and attach it between one of the points and the opposite side. Now get a second and form a cross with the first one so that the ends are touching the two remaining sides. Tape or glue a lid from a coffee jar or a foil cake case at the centre point as a holder.
Take a sheet of the tissue paper and paste with the PVA/water mix ensuring it is covered.
You can decorate your lantern with coloured tissue paper or even pressed flowers and leaves, but you may need to add another layer of tissue to keep them in place.
Place your LED light inside and secure the door with tape.
When dry use a craft knife to cut a flap to access the light holder.
You have your finished lantern ready for the Festival of Light.
HOW TO EDINBURGH Stephanie Jessop, blogger, writer, performer and ambassador for PluggedIn an organisation that brings the best of theatre to East Lancashire tells us how to crack the Edinburgh Fringe.
Traditionally over Summer, you might have noticed theatres tend to be a bit quiet. One of the main reasons for this is that generally speaking on a Summer’s evening going to sit in a big warm hall in the dark isn’t all that appealing. Another reason for this is the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. The fringe festival is HUGE. You’ve probably heard of it because X, Y and Z famous comedians are up there, but comedy isn’t all that is on offer. You can also watch the latest theatre, music, circus, cabaret, dance and a whole plethora of weird and wonderful things, that don’t seem to fall into any particular category.
About a month ago, my Edinburgh Fringe programme landed on my doormat with an incredibly heavy thud containing details of over 3,000 shows.
King Georges Hall or caught the Kiwi dance show Back of the Bus, performed on board a bus, both of these were from last year’s festival.
This is my fifth trip to the fringe, and choosing good theatre, to bring back to Blackburn, is my job but even I find the sheer amount of choice overwhelming. I still get caught out, and end up seeing at least one show that, politely put, is a bit of a dud.
I have to think about what people in Blackburn want to see. Is a particular genre popular at the moment? What did our audience feedback say? Luckily you only have to think about what YOU want to see.
So how do I go about choosing what to see? My main reason for going is to find something spectacular to bring back. If you saw the incredible LIGHT at Blackburn’s
If you’re really in to comedy, pack a weekend full of laughs or if you really like murder mysteries, then you can search for shows by keywords on the Edinburgh Fringe website.
There are plenty of critics out there, who know their stuff, and compile handy lists of what to see. Reviews also start coming out from day one you’ll know how many stars most shows have. Watching your wallet? ‘Free Fringe’ has a great programme of shows where tickets are completely free, and somebody comes around with a bucket at the end. If you didn’t like it, you don’t have to give them a penny! Do a little research. Anyone can apply to perform so there’s no quality control and it can vary a lot. But a quick look online at past reviews gives you a pretty good idea.
But don’t forget to take a risk! Leave a few hours in your trip where you haven’t pre-booked tickets to something. Take a walk down the royal mile, where every performer and their dog will try and convince you to see their show, and pick the one you like best. It might just end up being the best show of the fringe performed by a brand new company in a broom cupboard to only five people. It’s a chance to stumble upon something amazing that nobody else has. Remember everybody feels a little bit out of their comfort zone at the fringe. So there’s no need to feel embarrassed. If you’ve never seen a piece of physical theatre before now is the time to try! itspluggedin.com v 31
Finally go and see something that sounds a little weird. Seeing a show that starts at midnight and finishes as the sun comes up, might sound exhausting but where else are you going to get the opportunity to see something like that?
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This issue features How To guides from Blackburn’s talented creatives