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Tune into NSR this term; the official schedule is here... Culture, pages 34-35


Issue 1218 Monday November 15 2010


EST 1948


Inside today >>> Cycling against depression Newcastle graduates’ 1000mile cycle ride in memory of their friend Matt Elvidge News, page 3

The Invisibility Cloak: next season’s must-have Scientists reveal Harry Potter’s fancy-dress may not be quite so magic after all Comment, page 9

The fees debate continues Will higher fees mean less students? Ross Dent discusses. Comment, page 11

Midnight munchies What are your post-lash snacking habits really costing you? Life & Style, page 17

Cuts for art as well as students

No to cuts: thousands of students march together No ifs, no buts, no education cuts: Newcastle students join thousands more in London, in reaction to the proposed cuts to higher education, in one of the biggest public demonstations in a decade

Fran Infante Editor Fifty thousand students converged on Parliament last week to protest against the proposed cuts to higher education funding. Among them were more than 200 students from Newcastle who travelled to London to take part in the biggest, and most controversial, student demonstrations since the 1980s. In a joint effort between Newcastle and Northumbria 459 students were able to make the seven hour journey by bus for a subsidised price of just £5. Adam White, President of Northumbria University Students’ Union ,commented on the new partnership between the two rival universities, saying: “Clearly education cuts are an issue for students across

the country regardless of the type of university they attend - that was proven in our working together with Newcastle to raise the funds to take more than 450 students to London.” The Newcastle group began to convene in the darkness outside the Union building at 3.30 am, joined soon after by the Northumbria contingent whom they greeted with cheers and banner waving. The atmosphere was positive, friendly and even upbeat given the time of morning. Seven hours later the eight NorthEast buses arrived in central London and joined the swathes of students already assembled at Horse Guards. As chief organiser, Welfare and Equality Officer Sarah Fearns spoke to The Courier as the march began; “I’m really overwhelmed by how

many people are here, never tell me that my students are apathetic; they’re brilliant. “Given that the journey from Newcastle to London is so long, I was surprised at the initial response we got, but then they just kept coming and coming. We ended up with more than double the original numbers that I estimated.” When asked whether she thought the turnout would force a response from the government she was emphatic: “I think it has to, I think numbers like this you can’t possibly ignore it. If we can get them to stop the education cuts, then the tuition fees don’t need to go up and we can start working towards a fairer funding system that won’t disadvantage a generation of future students.” One of the students joining the Newcastle group was 22-year-old

Catherine Hale. She explained to The Courier the wider social concerns that had brought her to London: “I think it is important to do our bit, the cuts might not affect us directly but it will affect people we know, our children and so on.” When asked if she thought it would make a difference she replied: “Of course, I don’t think anyone would be here if they didn’t have some faith that the government would listen to them. It’s awful for people who might have gone to uni this year but didn’t get in, so now will have to go next year and be affected by the new fees. If it had been us“ she added, “I would like to think that students at the time would have fought for us too.“ Speaking at the start of the march Union Society President Tom Delamere was enthusiastic about the Continued page 4, 5 and 6

Funding for public art faces as much risk as the cap on our tuition fees Culture, page 24

Messy Little Raindrops The nation’s favourite Geordie: a review of Cheryl Coles’s new album Music, page 31

The Glamourpuss Revival Red carpet styling inspired by the golden era of cinema Fashion, page 20


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

News Editors: Simon Murphy and Charlie Oven

Have you got a news story for The Courier? Email us at:

Head of History warns proposed cuts will effectively privatise arts and humanities Emily Robson Under new government plans teaching grants for degree programmes in arts, humanities and social sciences are likely to be dramatically cut. As part of last month’s spending review, George Osborne announced that the teaching budget for the country’s 208 higher education establishments would be cut from £7.1 billion to £4.2 billion by 2014. Universities Minister, David Willetts, has suggested that humanities and arts courses would be funded wholly via tuition fees in the future. Controversially, it is planned that tuition fees will replace teaching grants in all but science and maths subjects. Teaching budgets for degree courses such as science, engineering, technology, maths and strategically sensitive subjects like modern languages will see some level of protection. In an exclusive interview with The Courier, Tim Kirk, Head of School for Historical Studies, commented that the plans will: “effectively privatise arts and humanities, it is appalling.” Kirk said: “We no longer manufacture, we are a service based economy; subjects such as history and English are therefore very important.” In an interview with Fran Infante (Editor), Vice Chancellor, Chris Brink told The Courier: “It is important that we use the language of investment rather than debt.” It is the “choice of each student as to how much investment they want to make.” Tim Kirk reiterates this point - and stated: “A degree from a Russell Group institution such as Newcastle University is a long term investment to a student’s future. “Would students rather invest in the long term, their future, or in short term, material possessions like cars?” Kirk also confirmed fears that

the proposals would create a two tier system in British universities, if students have to pay such a vast amount for their education. Tim Kirk told The Courier: “In recent years students have taken a consumer approach to higher education.” This will only be exacerbated as students under the new government plans will be funding their arts and humanities degrees wholly, with no government subsidy. Questions over what constitutes value for money will therefore take centre stage, in what will quickly become a business-consumer relationship. The UCU (University and College Union) claims that if corporation tax was raised to the average for Western countries it would fund higher education. Equally if we taxed the super rich proportionately, humanities courses could be heavily subsidised. Newcastle University prides itself on being a member of the elite Russell Group, and under the new government plans Tim Kirk confirmed that Newcastle University will see research funding cut by a quarter. He explained that there is an element of choice in dealing with the lack of funding for research. Either Newcastle University loses research as its unique selling point and therefore teaching standards will inevitably slip, or the University must raise its intake of students to compensate financially. An increase in students would however mean larger class sizes and fewer module choices. Whilst Tim Kirk mentioned that the School of Historical Studies would soon be charging something approaching the highest level of fees, he also told The Courier that “Newcastle University is in a better position than most.” Recent statistics have shown that some universities, such as The London School of Economics, will lose their funding all together because they only offer Humanities subjects, finding themselves fully privatised.

The government last week criticised degrees which are considered to have low postgraduate employment rates, or are deemed as poor quality. Universities all over the country are facing huge spending cuts, and annual tuition fees are set to rise to £9,000. The Universities and Higher Education Minister, David Willetts, declared that weaker courses should “be forced to improve or wither on the vine”, as students’ job prospects plummet with the current economic crisis and the hugely controversial

cuts being made to higher education expenses. The government are taking precautions by warning students and their parents to query the value of certain degrees. The best and most valuable courses would be allocated kite marks based on their standard of teaching, facilities and, most importantly, postgraduate employment rates and salaries which will be an indicator of how highly they are rated by future employers. Mr Willetts claimed that this strategy will: “Give students and their parents the information they really need and value, so parents would

Comment Join our debate: with a pass mark of just 40, is Freshers’ year an essential part of the uni experience or a waste of time? Page 10

Life & Style The Courier’s first ever double blind date - is it a case of the more the merrier, or is four a crowd? Page 14

Culture Talent or tailoring? Tom Hopkins examines whether the imageobsessed music industry has finally gone too far Page 29

Sport Meet the men and women of NUSWC. Sports Editor Jono Taylor introduces an underated but ambitious club Page 38

Meetings Timetable: Monday News & Comment - 12pm, Room 6 Park Terrace Sport- 1pm, MLK, Room 6 Park Terrace Photos - 12pm, Room 6 Park Terrace Tuesday Life & Style - 12pm, Room 6 Park Terrace Fashion - 12pm, Room 6 Park Terrace

The School of Historical Studies would be one of the areas particularly affected by the cuts

In fact, Tim Kirk stated: “There has been a gradual erosion of finance for higher education since the 1980s despite the increase in the number of students”. He commented that many lecturers felt the Browne Review was “more radical than expected, but it was not surprising. This isn’t a new issue.” Kirk added that students hold a lot of power. He expected that if

the proposals went ahead, students would view this as a “broken promise” on behalf of the government. Whereas other universities have begun to implement policies of redundancies, Newcastle University Vice Chancellor Chris Brink remains confident that closures of courses will be a last resort; the University’s aim being instead to work more efficiently.

Government Minister blasts weak degrees Susie May Beever

The Union Society, King’s Walk, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 8QB. Tel: 0191 239 3940

be better informed on whether certain courses were good value for money.” The government claimed that students needed to be more realistic when applying to fashionable higher education courses in the context of graduate unemployment, which is currently at its highest level since the 1980s. More than 21,000 students who graduated last year are still unemployed six months later, with more than double this figure going on to jobs in supermarkets and bars. When queried on the module in ‘Harry Potter Studies’, Durham University claimed that the course

was: “A serious and innovative academic module”, which had been approved by some of the world’s leading academics. The lecturer of the course, however, refused to comment. It has been argued the recent trend for unconventional low brow courses has led to the alleged devaluing of degrees. However, it is feared that soon many degrees will lose value, as tuition fees for most three year courses could be set to rise to £27,000, and the prospect of postgraduate employment becomes ever more challenging.

Wednesday Film - 12pm, Room 6 Park Terrace Arts 12.30pm, Room 6 Park Terrace Music - 1pm, Room 6 Park Terrace TV & Radio - 1.30pm, Room 6 Park Terrace Editorial Team: • Editor - Fran Infante • Deputy Editor - Joshua Shrimpton Dean • News Editors - Charlie Oven & Simon Murphy • Comment Editors - Danny Kielty & Laura Heads • Life & Style Editors - Mary Mullarkey and Kat Bishop •Fashion Editor - Lauren Girling • Arts Editor - Stephanie Ferrao • Film Editor - Adam Williams • Music Editors - Polly Randall & Joe Skrebels • TV & Radio Editor - Ellie Wilson and Lynsey Fawcett • Puzzles Editor - Andy Pitkeathley •Listings Editor - Ciara Littler • Sports Editors - Kat Bannon, Jono Taylor & Wills Robinson •Photo Editors - Briony Carlin • Design Editor - Helen Mamalaki • Online Editors - Bethany Sissons, Katie Hicks, Elliot Bentley and Colin Henrys •Proof Editors - Charlotte Loftus, Katy Lawson, Hannah Davey, Verity Cunningham, Freya Marks & Gemma Farina The Courier is printed by: Harmsworth Printing Limited, Northcliffe House, Meadow Road, Derby, DE1 2DW. Tel: 01332 253013. Established in 1948, The Courier is the fully independent student newspaper of the Union Society at Newcastle University. The Courier is published weekly during term time, and is free of charge. The design, text, photographs and graphics are copyright of The Courier and its individual contributors. No parts of this newspaper may be reproduced without the prior permission of the editor. Any views expressed in this newspaper’s opinion pieces are those of the individual writing, and not of The Courier, the Union Society or Newcastle University.

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010



Graduates complete 1000 mile cycle ride Charlie Oven News Editor Depression can affect anybody, of any age and background. Matthew Elvidge was a bright, energetic and caring young man, who had everything to live for. He had a large family and a wide circle of friends. However, the Newcastle graduate took his own life aged just 23, following a very short period of depression. He was due to start his first job in insurance on September 21 2009 and died just one day before. In response to the tragedy, the Matthew Elvidge Trust was established. One of the charity’s many aims is to raise awareness of depression in young people, and help identify some of the signs which can lead to suicide in young people. Since the Trust was founded, over £50,000 has been raised from various initiatives, including a climb of Mount Kilimanjaro in January 2010, the Fleet half marathon and a Channel swim. In aid of the charity, nine Newcastle graduates participated in a 1000 mile cycle ride across the UK. The epic journey, which ran during August, started in Northern Ireland, went across Scotland and then headed down to Hastings before finishing at Matt’s house in Hampshire. One of the cycle ride participants managed to catch up with The Courier. Charles Rayner revealed that an important aspect of the ride was to get as many people involved with the fund raising campaign as possible. “We had about 70 people join us for different parts of the cycle as we made our way around,” he said. Rayner described how rewarding the bike ride was based on the reactions of those they passed by. Reflecting on the epic experience, he told The Courier: “In Glasgow we managed to tell a guy about what we were doing at one set of traffic lights, and when we got to the next set he handed us a donation out of his car window. “When we were cycling through Sheffield a bloke saw us going past

Bike hike: nine Newcastle Graduates took part in a 1000 mile journey across the UK in aid of the Matthew Elvidge Trust , a charity that raises awareness for depression in young people

his house and so looked us up on the internet and donated there. “It is little moments like these that really make the effort completely worthwhile.” As of now, the bike ride has raised

a total of £34,310; an impressive achievement considering their target was £25,000. Rayner said: “Depression is a condition that often goes unnoticed; it is more than simply an emotive feeling of sadness. Getting

help is key - there are valuable support systems which we have hoped to raise awareness for from the bike ride.” For more information on the bike ride campaign, visit the website at If you would like to make a donation you can do so on http://uk.virginmoneygiving. com/fundraiser-web/fundraiser/showFundraiserProfilePage.action?userUrl =1000milesformatt&isTeam=true

Professor helps environmental clean-up operation Oliver Savory A pollution expert has flown to Hungary to assist with a massive clean-up operation in the wake of last month’s devastating toxic sludge disaster. Prof Paul Younger, Director of the Institute for Research on Sustainability at Newcastle University, will offer advice alongside three colleagues from the British Geological Survey. The disaster occurred on October 4 when a reservoir containing the waste from an alumina plant in Ajka, western Hungary, was breached, spilling one million cubic metres of the sludge and flooding nearby villages and farmland. In the immediate aftermath of the ecological disaster the Hungarian government declared a state of emergency in three Western counties. Ten people were killed and 150 in-

jured in the ensuing tragedy. All life in the Marcal river, which feeds the Danube, is said to have been extinguished. The national disaster unit described the sludge as “a thick highly alkaline substance” stating: “It has a caustic effect on the skin”. Speaking from the shores of Lake Balaton, Prof Younger said: “This spill led to tragic loss of life and affected an area of 40 square kilometres. Now, the Hungarian people are working hard on the clean-up.” Locals spoke of the ensuing chaos as a wave of toxic sludge, up to two and a half metres high, flowed through the village of Kolontar and threatened the nearby town of Devecser. One man, Sanci, told reporters how he had called his parents to try and warn them: “Thankfully it was me who woke them up, not the sludge.” Sanci is living in Budapest so was able to get information quickly from the internet.

Due to the diligent efforts of Hungarian volunteers, as well as over one million Forints (£3000) in donations, the worst case scenarios were avoided. An emergency dam was constructed to avoid further spillage. While the sludge did reach the Danube, officials say that its pH levels are normal, thus avoiding substantial pollution of Europe’s second longest river. Locals have been allowed to return to Devecser, however it is uncertain whether it is entirely safe. Others have nowhere to go; houses in Kolontar have been demolished as it is considered life threatening to live there. Prime Minister Viktor Orban blamed negligence for the spill, whilst Environment State Secretary Zoltan Illes has indicated that the company responsible could face damage claims of up to €73m (£64m). Its president has been detained for questioning.

North News and Pictures Ltd

Professor Younger claimed the toxic sludge disaster led to a tragic loss of life in Hungary


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

News How did we get here? A history of fees:

1962 – Education Act made it a legal obligation for Local Education Authorities to pay students’ tuition fees and offer maintenance grants to help with living costs which did not have to be repaid.

1997 – Lord Dearing Review into Higher Education recommends series of changes, including a graduate contribution and the scrapping of the maintenance grants.

1998 – Tuition Fees of £1000 for Home Undergraduates introduced by Labour government.

Fighting for our future: Newcastle students hit the streets Hundreds of students from Newcastle and Northumbria join mass protests in London against proposed higher education cuts; Editor Fran Infante travels with them... Continued from front page attitude of Newcastle students: “I’m really excited, there’s a great atmosphere in the city today. Harriet Harman has just asked Nick Clegg to come outside and explain himself to the students and I hope he does, because if he doesn’t he’ll be letting us down.” As the march progressed the mood of the crowd appeared to echo Delamere’s statement, as Lib Dem leader Clegg increasingly became the subject of the students’ outrage. Many students carried placards voicing their sense of betrayal at the reversal of Lib Dem pre-election promises to oppose tuition fees. This was compounded at the end of the march by the rally held by the National Union of Students, during which videos of Nick Clegg speaking before the General Election were screened, in which he explicitly condemned the cuts he now supports. The reported shaking off of ‘traditional’ student apathy to move against a government proposing significant increases in the cost of university education, appears to have struck a chord not just with British students but with many from across Europe. Bo De Vries, a 21-year-old Masters’ student from Holland, was part of the group from Newcastle and explained her reasons for joining the protest; “The same thing is going on in Holland right now and I protested there as well, so I figured I should do the same here. I am hopeful that it will make a difference.” Students were not the only representatives of the University at the demonstration; one lecturer from the school of Civil Engineering and Geosciences who did not wish to be identified, condemned the government proposals as “essentially a privatization of higher education. “Lecturers and students should stand together against these cuts” he told The Courier; “I am here with colleagues from Northumbria and we are with the students 100 per cent. I think if we allow this to happen we run the very real risk of courses being run down and even closed, and our universities losing essential subjects like English or History – it’s simply anti-educational.” The good will and peacefulness of the majority was, however, dramatically overshadowed by the violence that erupted as part of the march

passed the Conservative campaign headquarters at Millbank Tower. The building was ransacked by angry students who took to the roof and burned signs and effigies of David Cameron. Eyewitness Lindsay Mackenzie described the response of the crowd as the violence increased: “there was a big group of people that got into the building and then they got up on the roof and everybody in the crowd was cheering for them. They started spraying fire extinguishers out over the crowd and everybody was excited and then they started throwing things. At one point they threw a used up fire extinguisher down into the crowd from the roof, and then we started to turn and yell at them to stop throwing stuff.” Inadequate police preparations have been widely blamed for the duration of time that the protesters occupied the building, and Mackenzie emphasised: “There were no police on the roof, they didn’t stop them [the protesters]. The police were facing off with the protesters at the entrance to the building, I don’t know whether they didn’t know people were on the roof or whether there was just nothing they could do.” Following the events 35 arrests were made for assault and criminal damages, but the impact of the negative press coverage has been far more wide reaching: “This violence is going to change the focus of the coverage – it takes away from the legitimate attention that should be paid to what people are actually protesting about”. Mackenzie told The Courier:”It’s counterproductive and dangerous – they could have killed someone. Whatever your politics, throwing a fire extinguisher down four storeys into a crowd is a stupid thing to do.” NUS officials joined the national press and Newcastle University Student’s Union in criticising the violence. North East Regional Coordinator for NUS Kat Docherty, explained the frustration of those who had organised what they intended to be a peaceful demonstration. She emphasised the need to not be diverted from the real issue: “Education Funding is being slashed, whilst tuition fees are being hiked up; there is no room for the argument “We have to invest in world class funding to compete” when

there is no increase in University income. Based on these numbers, the poorest students will have to jump through hoops to get the support they are entitled to, and the significant number of students whose family’s income is over the threshold for support are unlikely to receive any contributions other than loans.” Despite the controversy a number of student groups have come out in support of the rioters. Rowan Reingans, a spokesperson for the Newcastle Free Education Network, told The Courier: “I would urge you to see what happened in context - the 50,000 students marching yesterday were very angry, and rightly so. A significant amount felt they wanted to direct this anger at the government more directly. “The students at Millbank have shown that big demonstrations do not make as much of an impact as direct action - the 50,000 strong demo would simply not have got this much media coverage had it not been for the occupation of Conservative HQ. The demo would not have been on the front page of every newspaper had it not been for Millbank.” Conservative supporters were quick to point to the irony of Tory HQ being vandalised; student James O’Sullivan argued that “the anger directed against the Conservatives is misguided because unlike their coalition colleagues, they have been open and frank about their intentions to cut the deficit from the start. “It is the Liberal Democrats who are the elected representatives which must be held to account for breaking their key election promises.” No Newcastle students have in any way been implicated in the violence: fortunately most were some distance from Millbank Tower when the building was stormed, listening peacefully to speeches being made by NUS President Aaron Porter and others. All returned safely to the North East that night. If you want to hear more on this issue, tune in to NSR News at 12pm on Wednesday at or go to for the recorded show and look out for TCTV’s footage of the Demo at

Above: Banners flying, students join the national call for the government to

Two-tier system here Helen Culley Commentary


midst concerns regarding proposed tuition fee increases, a recurring prophecy is that the British higher education system will soon become two-tiered in its accessibility and academic significance. In other words, because the most distinguished universities will be free to charge a higher rate, they will attract students from affluent backgrounds, leaving behind the less economically fortunate. Is this really so different from our current system? Granted, poorer students can attend good universities if they apply for funding, but there are

other issues that factor into a successful application from prospective undergraduates. To gain access to a medicine degree, it’s almost essential that you attend some work experience in a clinical setting or in one of the available programmes for prospective doctors such as Medlink.

“It would seem the two tier system is imminent? Wrong. It’s already here” Unless you have contacts in the industry, it is hard to secure a position in a hospital or clinic. As for Medlink, the £240 cost is enough to prevent students from

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010

News October 12 2010 – Browne Review recommends the removal of the cap on tuition fees, leading to a free market system in university education

May 2010 – Liberal Democrat candidates running in the General Election, including Nick Clegg and Vince Cable, all sign a pledge presented by NUS promising to oppose tuition fees

2005 – Parliament passes an increase in tuition fees to £3000 by just five votes. This becomes the closest vote during Blair’s government.




end proposals for higher education cuts. Above far right: despite the Millbank riot, the overriding atmosphere was of peace. Above right: Cheerleaders Newcastle Angels represent the Athletic Union

to stay

disadvantaged backgrounds from applying. The exclusivity regarding essential experience isn’t confined to medicine however. Gaining a post alongside a lawyer is normally incredibly competitive, unless of course they’re best mates with your dad. Besides the advantages accrued by having parents who are ‘connected’, there is already alot of snobbery bestowed upon students who attend less renowned universities. How many Newcastle students didn’t chuckle at the “Your dad works for my dad” slogan on the infamous Poly versus Posh bar crawl t-shirts? It would seem the two tiered system is imminent? Wrong. It’s already here.

Middle earning graduates will be hardest hit George Sandeman Commentary


uition fees increasing to £9000 a year is the headline of recent proposals by the coalition government to reform university funding. At first glance, it would seem that this would represent a regression and further deter those from the poorest backgrounds in pursuing a university education. Channel Four’s FactCheck Blog points out that these reforms could well be progressive - by strict definition. The term refers to the distributional impact upon the population of students, and the new policy can be described as progressive if

it benefits the poorest more than the current system. The respects in which the proposed policy is strictly progressive are firstly, that a graduate will start paying back at £21,000 rather than the current £15,000, which helps those graduates earning the most modest incomes. Secondly, graduates earning between £21,000 and £41,000 will repay in a tapered system, meaning the percentage will increase in line with income. Thirdly, a National Bursaries scheme will allow universities to waive fees entirely for students in exceptionally chronic financial circumstances. Fourthly, there are measures, in the form of levies, to deter the wealthiest students from paying back their loans too quickly and

avoiding the increased interest. However, the word “progressive” has been somewhat hijacked by

“Raising the total cost of university education will deter many from higher education” politicians to masquerade as something resembling fairness. The new policy may be progressive, but it is hardly fair. Those averaging a yearly wage of £27,000 will take 29 years to pay back their loans at a total cost of £45,000, whilst those earning £60,000 will pay back at a quicker rate but at

a total of £40,000 because they would have accumulated less interest. It is the middle earning graduates that will be hardest hit by these new proposals, and that hardly falls under the definition of fairness. In the same way income is taxed on the ability to pay, so should university fees. It may be taxing the success of graduates, but the vast majority of people would agree that this is part of the government’s redistributive role. Raising the total cost of a university education alone will deter many from higher education; and with knowledge and expertise being the primary strength of the UK economy, is this something we can afford to risk?


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010



Break the cuts, not the windows: violence can’t be the way to solve the problem of increased university fees Luke Callow Commentary


atching the protest was a bit like watching ‘The Lord of the Flies’ as what started as a respectful, diplomatic march derailed and evolved into a pretty standard night out on the town… well, in some areas anyway. Trust the valiant students, many of whom were ready to fight to the death to stop the cuts, to emerge the baddies in something that should have generated a big sympathetic hug from the nation,

as well as two fingers up to the chuckle brothers running the country. I suppose at least no one can say we don’t care about our education… nothing shows passion quite like breaking a window or two. Sadly though, it was only a few that managed to put a bad spin on the protest when the other tens of thousands were actually quite well behaved. It’s probably fair to say that there were a few people there just up for a scrap and others getting caught up in the moment, but it shows a lot of ignorance on those peoples’ parts to think violence would solve the problem. We’ll be lucky if they don’t

whack up the prices just to spite us now; suddenly the cost of replacing those windows will be another few grand a year to learn! They love claiming for those expenses.

“It’s probably fair to say that there were a few people there just up for a scrap” So does protesting work? Well over the past hundreds of years there have been protests, so surely natural selection would have cut

this tendency if nothing occurred from it. In one respect protesting can be effective; it raises a lot of public awareness, force the government (or other establishment) to rethink their plans, or probably more effectively, simply be a pain in the ass to the wrongdoers. On the other hand, it is just a lot of noise making though, and while it worked when we emerged from our mothers’ womb up until about the age of five, they still had the option to ignore us… and we couldn’t break any windows at that age. It is great to see so many people displaying their feelings about the cuts though because none

of us really enjoy soul-crushing debt. Violence can’t be the way to solve it though; this isn’t like giving a bloke a slap if he spills your pint – we’re taking on the governing body of the country. Clare Solomon, president of the University of London Student Union, said: “What they’re doing to our education is costing absolutely millions… and they want to complain about a few windows.” Well yeah… but does that mean we should destroy thousands of pounds worth of buildings just to settle the score? Think it through hun.


Responses to the violence - Aaron Porter NUS President: “I absolutely condemn the actions of a small minority who have used violent means to hijack the protest.” - Independent: “Violence flared at Millbank Tower” -Boris Johnson Mayor of London: “I am appalled that a small minority have shamefully abused their right to protest.” - The Guardian: “A demonstation that spiralled out of control” -Sally Hunt UCU general secretary: “The overwhelming majority of staff and students on the march came here to send a safe and peaceful message to the politicians. The actions of the minority, out of 50 000 people is regrettable.” - The Times: “A student demonstation against tuition fees and spend ing cuts exploded into angry clashes.”

Stoking the fire: a section of the student demonstrators marched to the national offices of the Conservative Party, Millbank Tower, amidst repoted scenes of violence and confrontation

Pushing people too far: disenfranchise people and vandalise their rights; they’ll vandalise your property Simon Childs Commentary


tudents on the NUS demo last week were supposed to march straight past 30 Millbank, the national offices of the Conservative Party. However, the occupation of the building by hundreds of students and the demonstrations in support in the courtyard outside were enough to divert the attention, and the footsteps of many marchers, much to the chagrin of the demo’s stewards, largely hopeless in the face of curiosity (what do we students have if not curious minds?). What the curious were greeted with in the courtyard varied from a carnival atmosphere to scenes of violence, depending what the precise situation was at the time.

Perhaps as many as a hundred students had originally stormed past the beleaguered police into the building. Slowly but surely, more protestors broke through the quickly strengthened police line, smashed the glass facade and entered the building. Meanwhile others noisily demonstrated in solidarity with the occupiers. Unsurprisingly, the mainstream media has focussed largely on the violence (nine UK newspapers the next day using the same photo on their front page of a demonstrator kicking a window through), in a way reminiscent of their coverage of the violence at the G20 protests. I was present at the G20 demos and condemned the violence there, believing it to be the reckless actions of a minority and out of keeping with the spirit of the

protest. I cannot denounce what happened in London last week in the same way.

“mainstream media has focused largely on the violence” While at the G20, the crowd looked on uneasy at the violent actions of the few, at Millbank people cheered as the windows were smashed and applauded the occupiers. Effigies of David Cameron and Nick Clegg were burned. Barely a second went by without an anti-Tory or anti-Lib Dem chant. What happened was a reactionary measure representative of the ill-mood, one born out of pent up

frustration at a government that doesn’t listen to views of the people it is meant to represent. Also, it was not just attended by the ‘usual suspects’ – from what I could tell, most of the students there were simply angry students, not seasoned revolutionaries. Whatever may be said of what happened, it was a real manifestation of the outrage felt by many at a government of millionaires callously wrecking ordinary young peoples’ future life chances. Having said that, in a march of 50,000, the Millbank protesters clearly were in a minority, and many students will feel that their actions undermined the anti-cuts message of the day. I can understand their point of view. Aaron Porter, president of NUS condemned the violence as “despicable”.

Personally, I would reserve that word for the Tory/Lib Dem government who are happy to consign any semblance of state funded education we had left to the dustbin of history. If only the NUS had been so uncompromising in its criticism of tuition fees when they were introduced by Labour in 1998, or when they were raised in 2006, as they have against the protesters, we would not be in the position we are in today. Right or wrong, the insurrection at Millbank shows that you can only push people so far. If you disenfranchise people and vandalise their rights, they’ll vandalise your property. It might not be big, and it might not be clever, but criticism should be levelled first and foremost at the government, not at those standing up to them.


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER


Groundbreaking ‘theory of everything’ discovery is hailed a stratospheric success Elliot Bentley For several decades, physicists have been attempting to construct a “theory of everything” to tie up the discrepancies between various explanations used to describe the universe. The latest breakthrough has come courtesy of top Newcastle University scientist, Dr David Toms. His paper, which was published in scientific journal Nature last week, has been hailed as “remarkable” for both proving that gravity affects electric charges and uniting the usually obstinate gravity with other fundamental forces. Sean Robinson, a lecturer at top US science college MIT, described Toms’ technique to physicsworld. com as “demonstrably flawless”, and “important equally as much be-

cause of the way in which he did the calculation as the result itself”. The same article goes on to describe Toms’ citation index ranking – a measure of the number of times his work is referenced in others’ papers – as “about to go into the stratosphere”. The paper itself – a series of mindbogglingly complex mathematical equations – shows that interactions between quantum gravity and quantum electrodynamics cause electric charge to vanish at very high energies. “The basic idea is that the value of the electric charge depends on how close you are to that charge,” says Toms, who is originally from Canada. “My research shows conclusively that charge is affected by gravity, and that it tends to make the charge weaker as you proceed to

‘Demonstrably flawless’: Dr David Toms’ work tackles the biggest question of all

smaller distances. This is unexpected because in the complete absence of gravity the charge gets larger as the distance decreases.” Recently, physicists have de-

scribed the universe as consisting of four fundamental forces: the electromagnetic force, the weak and strong nuclear forces, and gravity. All have been incorporated into particle physics’ standard model – apart from gravity, which is generally considered “unruly”. Although Dr Toms has not been able to unify gravity into the standard, he has managed to show that all four forces can combine into a single force at very high energies. The weakening of the force between the electron and photon to almost zero at high energies means that theorists can work out the behaviour of highenergy electrons and photons after all – making fundamental calculations more manageable. As with much theoretical work, the work is not yet universally agreed upon, and may not stand up

Thieves target Oxford halls Finola Gibson

PART-TIME VACANCIES Job Title: Bar staff Employer: Direct Recruitment North East Salary: Meets National Minimum Wage Closing Date: 17/12/2010 Basic job description: Direct Recruitment are looking for experienced bar staff to work across the Newcastle area. Working hours are to suit, between 4-20 hours per week. Location: UK-wide Job Title: Bar Staff and Chefs Employer: The Duke of Wellington Closing date: Ongoing Salary: Meets National Minimum Wage Basic job description: The Duke of Wellington Pub are looking for ongoing Bar Staff and Chefs to join a new and exciting team. Applicants will be required to work up to 16 hours a week over various shifts, including evenings and weekends. Location: Gosforth Job Title: Bar/Waiting Staff Employer: The Hyena Comedy Club Closing date: 01/12/2010 Salary: National Minimum Wage Basic job description: To work as part of a team, preparing drinks and serving food whilst maintaining high customer standards. Person requirements: Candidates must be available to work evenings and weekends and have good attention to detail. Cocktail knowledge is preferred although is not essential. Location: Newcastle upon Tyne Job Title: Campus Brand Manager Employer: Graduate Closing date: 14/12/2010

Salary: Competitive + On Target Earnings Basic job description: As a Campus Brand Manager it will be up to you to spread the word of throughout your University Person Requirements: Access to a PC or laptop will be necessary. Location: Newcastle University Campus Job Title: Cashiers and Grillers Employer: Nando’s Closing date: 30/11/2010 Salary: Meets National Minimum Wage Basic job description: Duties will include serving customers, using the cash register, preparing food and delivering excellent customer service. Person Requirements: Experience preferred but not essential. Location: Gateshead Metro Centre Job Title: Christmas Sales Assistant Employer: WHSmith Closing date: 17/11/2010 Salary: Meets National Minimum Wage Basic job description: To provide excellent customer service in a friendly and professional manner, process transactions accurately and efficiently. Person Requirements: You must have prior customer service experience, preferably retail/ Location: Newcastle upon Tyne Job Title: Club Leader Employer: Clubs 4 Children Closing date: 31/12/2010 Salary: £12.00 per hour Basic job description: Club leaders required to run various after school activities in local primary

schools Location: North East Job Title: Communication Support Workers Employer: Newcastle College Closing date: Ongoing Salary: £14.40 per hour Basic job description: Applicants must be qualified to a minimum of British Sign Language Level 2, have Deaf Awareness training and good note-taking skills. Location: Newcastle upon Tyne Job Title: Hospitality/Bar Staff Employer: Tiger Tiger Salary: Meets National Minimum Wage Closing Date: Ongoing Basic job description: Tiger Tiger, one of Newcastle’s busiest bars, restaurant and clubs are currently recruiting Bartenders, Waiting Staff and Hosts in preparation for the busy Christmas period. Location: Newcastle upon Tyne Job Title: Part Time Sales Advisors Employer: Oasis Closing date: 19/11/2010 Salary: Meets National Minimum Wage Basic job description: To assist with general sales, styling and to deliver excellent customer service. Location: Gateshead Metro Centre Job Title: Part-Time Sales Assistants/Cashiers Employer: Currys Closing date: 19/11/2010 Salary: National Minimum Wage Basic job description: Duties will include using the cash register, serving customers, re-stocking merchandise and delivering excellent customer service. Location: Newcastle upon Tyne

Students have been warned to be vigilant after thefts from two college buildings at Oxford University. Postgrad Andrew Whitby lost possessions worth an estimated £6,700, including a laptop, SLR camera and footwear after thieves climbed in through his window. The incident has prompted the University to ask students to make a conscious effort to check whether people who enter the college building are in fact part of the University.

McDonald’s blunder loses student 500k

to rigorous testing. John Donoghue, a theoretical physicist at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, told Nature News that he thought “his [Toms’] mathematics could well be right, but I don’t think his interpretation is.” However, Dr Toms is optimistic that his work may lead to a final “theory of everything”, and is looking into the strength of gravity at high energies using his new approach. If his work proves successful, it could lead us yet closer to understanding the underlying mechanisms of the Universe.

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Alcohol ban to reduce antisocial behaviour Police and council officials in Edinburgh have joined forces with the city’s University to ban alcohol consumption in public areas amid a growing problem of antisocial behaviour. The move comes after unruly members of the public, including ‘drunks and skateboarders’, have been accused of harassing students. Adam Conn, head of security at Edinburgh, called the move a positive result for students. John Hawkins, from Lothian and Border police, said: “These bylaws are another example of how good partnership can make a real difference to communities.”

Students reach environment final

A Sheffield PhD student was reeling last week after realising he had thrown away a winning McDonald’s Monopoly sticker worth half a million pounds. Richard Newman was unaware of the rules of the game, so disposed of his rare Mayfair sticker in a wheelie bin after leaving it stuck to his car steering wheel for a few days. Two weeks later, he returned to a McDonald’s where he won a matching Park Lane sticker. The 35-year-old then realised his mistake after reading the rules.

A toilet flushing mechanism that uses less water is amongst the ideas of four Exeter University students who have reached the final of the Npower Future Leader Challenge. The competition is designed to encourage innovative ideas for environmental sustainability. If successful, the four students can look forward to being whisked away to a dog sledging event in the Arctic Circle, where they will also gain hands-on experience participating in a sustainability project.

has been ordered to apologise following claims that employees of a campus nightclub were physically separating gay students who were kissing on the venue’s dance floor. Allegations of a persistent homophobic culture at the Union led to uproar from the student population. One student remarked: “I have received countless abuse at the Student Union. This is not a gay friendly space.” Cardiff’s LGBT society are working with the Union to make homosexuals feel more at ease.

A second year student has spoken of a terrifying random attack in which he was stabbed outside an off-licence by a middle-aged woman. Luke Bierne described the assault as completely out of the blue: “She stabbed my neck and my chin. She was still trying to get me as I held her off.” Bierne was then taken to hospital where he was received treatment for his injuries. A description of the woman has been given to the police, but she remains at large.

undergrad in Union to apologise Leeds for gay ‘separation’ unprovoked stabbing Cardiff University Students’ Union


THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010

Is the first year of university a waste of time? Comment Editors: Laura Heads and Danny Kielty -

> Page 10

Persecuting the poor won’t bring back prosperity they know they can replace them with free labour from this system. If we say that council work can be paid far below minimum wage, then why not in the private sector? If these jobs need doing then the people doing them deserve an equal wage; one that represents the value of their efforts. In essence, we will be creating a two-tier system where the minimum wage only protects those who don’t need protection. It was brought in

Oliver Savory

On November 7 Iain Duncan-Smith, Work and Pensions Secretary, announced plans to make those on jobseeker’s allowance do four week, unpaid, manual labour placements or have their benefits removed for at least three months. In DuncanSmith’s words: “Play ball or it’s going to be difficult.” The idea is that it will give those who’ve been out of work the chance to experience a work schedule, and aims to target those who’re deemed to be sabotaging efforts to get them back into work. This “work placement” is designed to give them the push they need to get off their backsides and find a job. All in all, it’s your typical Daily Mail guff and seems to be more about persecuting the unemployed than genuinely helping them. It comes straight from the right-wing school of thought that all those on benefits must be lazy and want to live on handouts, rather than working for themselves. As students at a top university, many of you will not have experienced the benefit system, and I have to concede that I, myself, have thankfully never found myself in the position where I had to claim the dole. However, knowing graduates who found themselves struggling to find work and having to endure the Job Centre, and living with two

You, The Courier Emre Sayman, second year Accounting student reviews the last edition


ith The Courier, it comes with both its strengths and weaknesses in comparison with last year’s version. Firstly, the Culture and Film section have maintained and exceeded my expectations to that of last year’s, from the way it has been laid out to the finest detail. It is a pleasure to read. Secondly, the photos captured by the Sports section are overwhelming; especially L. Mackenzie’s photos which make you feel as if you are a part of the action. However, personally I feel the Life and Style section is generally tedious to read in most cases. You can clearly tell that some articles have blatantly been made up, or just dragged out to excessive limits. But it is good to see that the

“It’s your typical Daily Mail guff and seems to be more about persecuting the unemployed than genuinely helping them”

Shutting out the unemployed: the government plans to force the out-of-work into unpaid and compulsory manual labour placements

“dole-monkeys” myself I’ve gained more insight into the system than I ever truly wanted. There are a number of reasons why these plans are ridiculous. Firstly, it’s dealing with a problem that simply doesn’t exist, or certainly not in the scale that they’d have us believe. We already have laws against benefit frauds, and I wholly support the idea that those caught cheating the system should be punished. What I don’t support is the idea that we should tar all jobseekers with the same tainted brush. Being on the dole is a demoralising experience that most people want out of, but

they want to be in jobs that pay what their labour is worth, not forced into virtual slave labour. We already have a system of courses that the longer term unemployed get put on. These courses help them out with interview technique, CV writing, computer literacy and most importantly, constantly check that they’re applying to 12 jobs a day. No, these courses aren’t perfect, but we should be looking for ways to make them better so that they can really help those struggling at the bottom end of society, rather than forcing them into manual labour. But more than just the practicality

Senora Rosa section has gone! In addition, it doesn’t feel as if there are many “headline” news stories. This could be expanded on by including more relevant key issues from the news. Finally, the cartoons do not have the same comedy this year when compared to last, but, J. Whittaker’s picture this week almost met previous standards.

Potter’smagiccloakonlyaspellaway Susie May Beever

Boy meets girl: masculine glamour is a look that’s here to stay Fashion, page 20


8 2010 Issue 1217 Monday November


graduate A world away: Singapore’s class of 2010

News, page 2

EST 1948


Inside today >>>

Movember is here Find out why students across the city are helping to raise money for prostate cancer by growing moustaches News, page 3

Union drinks clearance sale Former government drugs advisor warns that alcohol is more dangerous than cocaine, but is anybody listening? News, page 6

Mind your Manners Columnist Katy Covell looks at the irritating effect of PDA couples on the world around them Comment, page 11

Guerilla knitters

Singapore. The students were the

first year of the Singapore campus’

Naval Architecture graduates

Student victim in Jesmond drive-by firework horror

Hats off: 58 students gained Newcastle

University degrees without leaving

rework attack Female undergraduate targeted in fi

side of the car and then it exploded two metres away from me,” Amy said. “The sound was really loud, my inA female student escaped serious at ears were ringing; it had exploded jury after yobs launched fireworks so close. her in a terrifying drive-by attack. “I was terrified.” Amy Jordan was walking home Amy, who had just finished her lifrom work in Jesmond, when redher shift as an aide at the Robinson flamed fireworks were fired at St. brary, had fireworks hurled at her from a saloon car window on three times; however two were misGeorge’s Terrace. directed. Police are investigating the inci“One of them hit a car causing the dent which took place on October firework to go up in the air and the 19 and are appealing for witnesses other hit a house,” she said. with any further information. “I had innocently thought that the Literature English up to The third-year she car was a taxi picking people student described the horror as go out. to saw the car drive slowly towards “So I was shocked when I had her. run across the road to prevent my“I saw a red flare come out of the

Bethany Sissons Laura Heads

want people to enjoy themselves, but we also want to make sure they are safe and responsible. “By working together we can get this message across, and take approto priate action if anyone continues ignore legislation or advice. “Our aim is to prevent unwanted in behaviour and firework misuse a the days running up to what is community celebration.” Every year almost 1000 young peoare ple from the North of England injured in firework related incidents, or often causing permanent scarring disfiguration. works.” Northumbria Police recorded ala bonof Northumbria Police have issued 2008 most 3500 incidents in statement warning students about fire and firework crime. the dangers of fireworks. Continued page 4 and 5 Chief Inspector Ryan said: “We

Thought knitting was just for grannies? Think again as Elliot Bentley explores a new form of urban graffiti Culture, page 25

Top of the table Ladies Hockey Firsts stay top of the table after a decisive 4-0 victory over Sheffield Hallam away. They remain undefeated in BUCS this year having won all three of their matches Sport, page 41

self from being hit.” Amy was taken by complete surprise at the unprovoked attack and could not identify the culprits, meaning they are still at large. “All I saw was an arm sticking out of the car holding the firework; exit all happened quite fast,” she

plained. “My first thoughts were just of disbelief; I couldn’t believe someone rehad actually tried to shoot a fi work at me.” “I’ve definitely been reminded reof the destructive potential of fi

Diva Fever Ellie Wilson and Emma Rowles meet Diva Fever following their X Factor knockout Culture, page 35

What do you think of The Courier this week? Send your 200-word review to courier.comment@ncl.

Scientists in the UK this week have demonstrated what seems to be the latest innovation in technology; one step further to the “invisibility cloak” made famous by the Harry Potter series. That’s right, with the recent development of flexible “metamaterials” scientists believe we really could be one step closer to the ultimate fantasy - invisibility. Metamaterials are essentially a film which is constructed of tiny little structures which interrupt and re-direct the flow of light waves, so rendering objects see-through or invisible. It sounds absurd, but by simply typing in “invisibility cloak” into Youtube, you’ll be amazed to see the number of hits, most of which involve Chinese men walking around in what can only be described as pos-

and usefulness of these plans, there is a massive moral case against them too. For centuries the working class have been fighting for fair wages, and in 1998 we finally got a national minimum wage, which currently stands at £5.93 for adult workers. Even if we consider the benefits as payment for their labour, these people will still be getting paid just £2.10. In addition, at a time when there have been massive redundancies, these plans could conceivably force more job losses. It’s not too hard to imagine a cash strapped council laying off bottom rung workers if

precisely to stop this kind of exploitation of the poor and uneducated. If these plans go ahead we’ll be sending out the message that those who are struggling to find work are worth less than the rest of society. The welfare state was created because the majority want a society that helps out the least well off. If someone’s sick then they can get healthcare, when someone retires they can still survive, and if someone falls onto bad times, society helps them back up; this is in the best interests of society as a whole, not just those at the bottom. We live in a liberal society, the basis of which is the concept that everyone has equal worth. As soon as we break from this and say that forced labour is OK as long as they’re poor, we regress back to the class system. Let’s not do that.

sibly the coolest raincoat ever seen (or not seen) by the human eye. It doesn’t stop there either; the polymers used to manufacture the metamaterials are also used to create flat and rigid surfaces and objects, as well as flexible materials. However, scientists also claim that these striking demonstrations of invisibility occur only for longer wavelengths of light, i.e. redder colours. Apparently the larger structures in metamaterials are far easier to construct, and for it to work on the shortest wavelengths of light would require Nanostructures, pushing the “boundaries of manufacturing”. So, not quite there yet. However, the beneficial implications of such developments to society would be staggering. We’ve all imagined what it would be like to be invisible for a day, and the sort of things people would get up to. But can you imagine actually being able to do them? Innovations in science would suddenly allow us to sneak into any bar unseen and for free, or even spy on housemates and see what they get up to whilst we’re gone, if that’s the sort of thing that

floats your boat. Ortwin Hess, a physicist from Imperial College who specializes in metamaterials, told the BBC that the work was a “huge step forward in very many ways”, however, it was also still very much under development, with the principal goal being working towards materials with full invisible abilities.

“We’ve all imagined what it would be like to be invisible for a day, and the sort of things people would get up to” Scientists have talked about the material’s possibilities for cameras and contact lenses as well as clothing; however, Professor Hess added that these were still “some way off”. So the likelihood is we may still have a very, very long wait before invisibility cloaks start gracing the shelves in Primark.


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER


Is the first year of university just a waste of time? Yes Sophie McCoid

Think back to your first year, and what comes to mind? Drunken hall parties? Wild nights out? Long nights in the library? Whilst for many of us the first two statements bring back fond memories, I think you’d struggle to find anyone who agreed with the latter. Apart from maybe that one night you did an “all-nighter” after leaving your assignment due for the next day. This is first year, the year of freedom, where all you have to really worry about is trying to maintain your dignity after one too many trebles. This is not a year where academic performance is on your high list of priorities, with many students adopting the mentality: “As long as I get 40 per cent, I’m happy”. With Vince Cable encouraging universities to offer two year courses to help cut costs, the undergraduate really needs to ask themselves: is this year of socialising and partying really worth the debt?

“This is first year, the year of freedom where all you have to really worry about is trying to maintain your dignity” Seven universities around the country are trialling the scheme, one being Staffordshire University which has said that on average, results obtained by students on these fast-track degrees, are two-thirds of a degree classification better than those on the usual three year course. This in itself is an attractive prospect. With the job market for gradu-

ates getting tougher every year, a good degree classification is essential if you are to stand a chance at employment. Students on fast track courses seem to be more focused, due to the lack of lengthy holidays, which are commonplace on three year courses. Students really immerse themselves into their course and the results are therefore of a higher standard. Staffordshire University has calculated that graduates on their two year courses end up £20,000 better off than those taking three year courses. In these hard economic times, £20,000 is not to be sniffed at, and it’s easy to see why the two year degree is becoming more and more appealing. Although I am reluctant to be seen as a kill joy - and to all the freshers reading this - know that I, a bitter second year, am extremely jealous of your situation. I had the best year of my life last year, but do I think it prepared me adequately for the reality of second year? No. The lack of responsibility I felt towards my studies last year has meant the transition to second year, where everything actually counts, has been difficult to say the least. If first year had counted for even a small amount of my degree classification, I would have taken it alot more seriously and my academic mind set would have been much improved. With fees estimated to treble to £9000 a year, the value of the virtually academically pointless first year has to be called into question. Is the extra £12,000 of debt (fees and living expenses) that first year would cost you really worth it in the long run?

Courier Online

Make your comments on any issues raised this week online at

Wasted, hungover and pretty much useless: is the first year of university more about drinking and socialising rather than studying?

No Finola Gibson

With the announcements of Higher Education cuts, which will have a significant impact on the amount of debt that will be racked up by students over a short time of three years, I still believe that first year is crucial to the university experience. Often graduates look back fondly on this time in their lives, where everything is at its least regimented, and academic and personal growth happens at its quickest. Many would say three years wasn’t long enough; so why deny future students this amazing experience by only giving them two years? First year is the settling in period. It is one of liver-adjustment, reinvention and the realization that the washing and cleaning up doesn’t do

itself. Students not only have to take in a different level of study, but become independent. From sheltered home life to living without those comforts, suburban luxuries of baths and showers make a stark contrast to the prison cell interior and ancient appliances of Ricky Road. Students learn a lot from first year; such as just how many hangovers you can have in a week. Those days spent incapable of anything even mildly productive - when all you can do is procrastinate on Youtube whilst eating beans out of a can teach us in second and third year to avoid so many trebles. By second year, many would have got out of their system the need to play “Ring of Fire” every time they go out, and instead are happy with a glass of wine and The X Factor. However, it’s not all about drinking at university. With no immediate academic issues, students can focus on other parts of university such as charity work, sports and societies. When it comes to academic study, some people may have the impression that the most used resources by

students are Google or Wikipedia. This is just untrue; in the first year of most degrees, they cover the basic foundations of the course which are essential in ensuring a student’s progress towards more demanding concepts. The bases must be covered in each subject so that people who have either taken a year out, or have not studied the subject before, can gather an overall understanding. You could argue that first year is crucial to make sure that the degree is worth committing to; there’s no point doing computer science if you realise you’re IT illiterate. Having settling-down time allows people to improve in their degree without the pressure. I stand by the principle that no matter what year of the degree you’re in, the amount that you put in is what you get out of it at the end. People spend the majority of their lives working day in, day out; the first year of university should not be missed as it will be one of the most memorable time “wasted”. In no way would you want to throw it away.

Moral manipulation in store’s chosen charities John Claggart

There is a small, interesting detail in the recent history of the British economy. Against expectations, the expensive supermarket chain Waitrose has flourished through the recession. Logic would dictate that, anticipating possible hard times, people would tend to choose a supermarket branded as cheap and cheerful. Yet the Waitrose brand is expanding; the store’s pre-tax profits last year increased to £280m and is on track to rise again this year. How has this happened? I think that the reality of mass food production, distribution and consumption is so distressing that, precisely at the point of our exposure to it, we are

extremely vulnerable to comforting illusions provided for us by marketing. We buy organic, Fairtrade, locally grown; aware that we are, in a tiny way, helping to combat some sort of a tide. So we choose partly on the basis of price and quality, but also are increasingly susceptible to “ethos”. Slavoj Žižek is exactly right in his analysis of corporate ethics. Drawing on Oscar Wilde’s contrarian critique of charity, Žižek maintains that companies today sell us our moral redemption from consumerism. The Waitrose Community Matters scheme is the perfect embodiment of this tendency. Since 2008, every store has donated £1000 per month to local charities. On the face of it, this is an extremely admirable moral action: over £3m has so far been given away. What is sinister about it, however, is the way in which the charitable process is cleverly incorporated into the consumer experience.

Every month, the staff choose three charities, but the money is divided according to the democratic participation of Waitrose customers: “We need your help to decide who gets what.” At the counter, you receive a green token that allows you to vote for the charity of which you most approve. The more tokens a cause gets, the bigger the donation they receive.

“What is sinister about it, however, is the way in which the charitable process is cleverly incorporated into the consumer experience” Again, let’s be clear that money going to charity is a good thing. The usual hypocrisies of corporate charity of course apply (for example, the massive publicity involved in helping 36 local charities per year). Yet

the obscenity of it is located in the performance of charitable giving, the act of depositing a token as if giving real money. The scheme’s marketing value, difficult to calculate but surely potent, lies in the customer developing positive associations of moral action with the experience of buying food at Waitrose. Not for them the tawdry selfish mantra: “Every little helps”. Having done their daily good deed, perhaps the awkwardness of avoiding the Big Issue seller is somewhat diffused. Notice that all supermarkets have adopted a similar psychological trick in respect to locally grown produce. Combating the impression of the supermarket as a monstrous corporation, crushing local markets and selling food grown by near-slaves at the other end of the world, increasingly those few products produced in Britain are signalled by the Union Jack. The import has long been a staple of the British economy.

But instead, as if contributing to the war effort and, “Digging for Victory”, we are encouraged to think of our purchase as a miniature economic stimulus. We need to think urgently about the vast disaster of human consumption in regards to resources and ecology. We cannot allow our sole engagement with these realities to be mediated through the experience of shopping. So, I have a modest proposal for those who shop at Waitrose. When it comes to deciding how to “spend” your green token, take it home with you instead and use it as a poker chip. The £1000 will still go to charity, but you will have rebelled against the commodification of your morality. In any case, I will leave you with a mantra worthy of any Fairtrade brand nestled away on the supermarket shelf: Token by token, maybe we can still change the world.

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010



Higher fees needn’t mean less students Ross Dent

There has been much doom-mongering surrounding the news that tuition fees are set to rise, but the claim that “people from poorer backgrounds will not be able to come to university” is, in my opinion, factually unsound. It is perhaps understandable for there to be some confusion about the exact figures given the complexity of the issue, but I believe that while the claim is not only untrue it is also dangerously counter-productive. It was declared for years that higher tuition fees would deter poorer pupils from applying to university. In fact, post top-up fees, applications rose across all socio-economic groups to record levels. Why should it be any different now? It is argued that poorer people will be more adversely affected by the rise than those from other backgrounds. How can this be the case, when there are no upfront tuition costs to pay, and maintenance loans are set to increase? It’s a long overdue move in my opinion. With this in place, no one should be financially barred from university. There is a lot of confusion surrounding Browne’s recommendation that interest be charged to some people.

Graduates on lower incomes would not face the 2.2 per cent real interest rate. If a typical debt of £30,000 is assumed, an individual would need to earn around £28,500 in real terms to service the full amount of interest (a not insignificant sum). For graduates earning between £21,000 and this level, the interest charged would be capped to match their repayment, while for graduates earning below £21,000, no interest above inflation would be levied. Not only does this mechanism limit how much interest lower-earning graduates must pay, but it also prevents the debt from growing in real terms because the interest is always covered: either by the graduate, or partly or fully by the government. Labour leader Ed Miliband has, along with the NUS, called for a graduate tax to be introduced which will be much “fairer” than a rise in fees (although the two plans do differ in some respects). But the present system of loan repayments based on a percentage of your income is for many effectively a graduate tax. Graduates who don’t pay off their debt in full under the current system face a 25 year graduate tax of 9 per cent above £15,000. Under the new proposals, this would become a 30 year graduate tax of 9 per cent above £21,000. Indeed, for the lowest earning 30 per cent of graduates the actual level of fees makes no difference to how much they pay.

It may seem impossible to believe but the more fees go up, the more the system is like a graduate tax - a pure graduate tax would arise under the current system if fees were infinitely high. The key difference is that under a fee system, there is a link between how much students pay and how much universities receive, whereas a graduate tax goes into general funds. Given the above, it is my opinion that the intractability of the graduate tax vs. higher tuition fees debate rests on the possible existence of a psychological difference between a ‘tax’ and a ‘debt’? Clearly people do not like either very much, but a debt is ‘my debt’, seen as a burden to be repaid in full, whereas a tax is a much more abstract concept. One must bear in mind however, that it is expected that over 50 per cent of people will have their debt written off. As such, the IFS concludes that “A focus on headline fee levels is not very informative since repayments depend only on future returns in the labour market. Potential students would be best advised not to concentrate on the notional debt attached to degree courses, and instead go to the university of their choice regardless of the fees. “Those who oppose the fee regime and advocate a graduate tax would - perhaps ironically - have their demands met if fees continue to rise.” A Sutton Trust report confirmed

earlier this year that rather than being put off by fees, disadvantaged students struggle to achieve the Alevel grades to get to the best universities; and if they do, they apply to less selective universities. This is: “partly because they lack good information about what subjects and universities to choose, but mainly because of a poverty of aspiration”. Poor students often think that a university education - especially an elite one - isn’t for them. With bad careers advice, it is likely that people from poorer backgrounds will do just as the IFS cautions not to: look at the notional debt attached to degrees. With no one to correct the exaggerations of the media and others, the poverty of aspiration can only get worse, and it is for this reason that the worst case scenario of poorer students not applying to universities will occur. It is therefore my opinion, that if the NUS and other student’s groups really are concerned about this issue, they ought not to be reinforcing this by repeating, in the words of the Times Education Supplement: “You suspected university wasn’t for you, and you know what, you’re right. You can’t afford it.” A much more constructive course of action would surely be to ensure people get the right information and, above all else, emphasise that your background does not limit your opportunities - nor indeed should it limit your aspirations.

Readership rip-off: will online paywalls mean disaster? Stephanie Ferrao

Newspaper publisher News International’s controversial decision to charge users to read Times Online and Sunday Times Online was put to the test last week as subscription figures were released. It was revealed that over 100,000 people registered to pass through online paywalls, but the number of visitors to the sites slumped from 21 million per month in April, to 2.7 million by October. In a speech to American newspaper editors in July, News Corporation oligarch Rupert Murdoch argued that online readers “should” pay to access Times Online and Sunday Times Online. By privatising the websites Murdoch has added the online publications to his collection of carefully controlled media outlets, which include the book publishers HarperCollins, The Sun and Fox Broadcasting Company. Of course, Murdoch’s public statement deviates from his personal Capitalist agenda as he claims that the income garnered by the paywall will support and maintain the prevalence of high-class journalism in the publications. Whilst paywalls are de rigeur for newspapers in the US, this first attempt in Britain has been received poorly, with visitor hits slumping by 87 per cent since its introduction. Murdoch’s belief in the old ways of business is steadfast, and rather than exploring innovative and more lucrative marketing and advertising strategies, he has dealt with News

Clicking the way to disaster? Online paywall subscriber numbers have fallen 87 per cent since the system was introduced this year

International in his own way. In the case of The Times, Murdoch’s business strategy was succinctly summed up by one critic who called the paywall the “milking of [Murdoch’s] dying cash cow dry, one pound at a time”. Looking at the paywall’s business model, it’s hardly a progressive strategy: by charging users to access content, publishers have simply applied the methods of newspaperselling to the online arena, assuming firstly that the nature of the content is the same, and secondly that sales will be matched. Surely to be a key player in the fast-paced innovative media industry, the notion of change is, if anything, inherent to

the success of a business’ longevity? Our own Union shop sells The Times for a meagre 30p, yet just to shift the papers promotions teams need to entice students with regular freebies. As the generation who is most familiar with the internet, Murdoch has failed to recognise that we, the “digital natives”, are most easily accessed and influenced through the burgeoning realm of social networking outlets. Sites such as Facebook and Twitter encourage access to information, whereas The Times paywall encourages exclusivity. In any case, the site’s pay-as-you-go features are all too easily undermined by a single and instantaneous

click on a rival newspaper website, or even just Google or BBC News. Comedian and Guardian columnist David Mitchell posed the salient question of whether the paper he writes for would follow suit if the paywall were to be successful: “Are we to believe that The Guardian wouldn’t institute something similar? Or would it be happy to be reduced to the online equivalent of a freesheet?” Either way, it is still too early to foresee whether Murdoch’s paywall will be a publishing success story or a failure. If things don’t work out, just get rid of moron-cum-’social commentator’ Jeremy Clarkson. That should save a quid or two.

Mind your manners Katy Covell Columnist

Why is it that British people always seem to be apologising? I cannot be the only one to have noticed that a large majority of our fellow citizens cannot suppress a constant compulsion to ‘excuse’ themselves. I could be entirely wrong in attributing this curious characteristic only to Brits, but it is a quality that I have either failed to notice in other nationalities or one that they do not possess. I used to think that this ‘auto-apologising’ was endearing; that it constituted a large part of the ‘English’ charm for which Americans apparently go wild (think Notting Hill), but I have since realised that saying “sorry” all the time only serves to devalue the sincerity with which it is received. Of course you genuinely mean it when you step back in a queue and stand on someone’s toes or spill red wine on your friend’s cream carpet, but do you really mean it when someone barges into you from out of nowhere? No. That is not to say that we should mean it, but rather that we shouldn’t say it if we don’t. It’s simply a bad habit; a verbal burp that slips out the moment that any discomfort arises. In fact, I’d like to suggest that it is exactly this desire to mask discomfort that has resulted in the misuse, and overuse, of several words in the English language. There are two in particular that come to mind, and I am sure you will have heard each of them misemployed at least once a day: the dreaded “literally”, and infuriating “like”. I’m a ridiculous grammar pedant, but the way I see it, knowing the appropriate word to use is as fundamental to our language as understanding punctuation. The irony is that many people today use “literally” and “like” almost as punctuation marks; spilling them into conversation as often as “um” and “er”. For some reason “literally” has been adopted as a means of emphasis; “I literally almost died of shame!”. Well no, unless you were on the brink of heart failure as brought on by some horrendously embarrassing event, you only figuratively “nearly died” (a somewhat melodramatic proclamation anyway). I cannot claim never to have been guilty of verbal vandalism, indeed at one time I am sure that there were more “likes” in my sentences than nouns, but it was at worst a stage, and one that I have grown out of. Of course the language we know as ‘English’ has changed vastly over the centuries - you only need to have read one line of Shakespeare or Chaucer to realise that - and so it could be argued that it is merely another development in the evolution of our language. Perhaps it is because I am an English student, but I feel that it’s rather sacrilegious to use words when they are not needed, and in doing so demean them. It’s like cracking eggs with no intention of cooking. The ability to communicate is a gift, yes, but the ability to do so with the vast array of rich words is even better.


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER


Obama and the midterms loss may just reveal some uncomforting truths over the Anglo-American relationship Laura Heads Comment Editor

When the result of the midterm elections were revealed in America last week, a collective intake of breath could be heard from around the world. Not only do the results influence the goings-on in America, they hold much importance for the rest of the world, especially in a day and age where the world seems to revolve around whatever it is America is doing. The Republican takeover of the House of Representatives - one half of Congress - is, as expected, a huge blow for President Obama. The result means that not only will Obama find it hard to pass any of his new legislative proposals, but the newly Republican House will also begin

opposing many of his old ones. Not only has Obama faced a humiliating defeat after a landslide victory two years ago, but it has also helped to add to the emerging idea that he is becoming a far weaker President, in charge of a country that is destabilized by economic despair. A view that will not help Obama, or indeed the West, on their foreign policy aims. There have already been reports of jubilation in Israel, where, after a difficult few years of relations with Obama, the Israeli president welcomes the results. However, on the flip side, in many parts of the Arab world the instant reaction was that Obama would no longer have the power and influence needed to continue the pressure put on Israel to continue the peace talks. Essentially the Senate (where the Democrats also lost a significant number of seats), and the House of Representatives, hold a lot of power over the President and the decisions he wishes to make. Thus I can fully

A hitch-hiker’s guide to the historic high street Satish Beri

Though the majority of us will be accustomed to how the high street looks these days, many in the elder generation may feel a wave of nostalgia overcome them when thinking about the high street in an era gone by. I don’t think I’ve ever even contemplated a high street being anything other than retail chain stores and fashion stores, but apparently there was a period before the arrival of superstores in the towns. Over the course of six weeks, one market town turned back the clock to try out shopping in each era for itself, before the arrival of mega stores and online rivals, for the BBC One documentary Turn Back Time. Beginning in the 1870s, each episode takes a look at the culture of the British high street throughout the ages. Four shops in Shepton Mallet have been transformed into historically themed shops providing a real insight into how the high street can impact on a society’s culture, and the hammering it has taken since the advent of the supermarket and out-of-town shopping. The series is a great watch for anyone that’s a fan of history being brought to life; starting in the Victorian era, we are guided through the high streets of the Edwardian generation, wartime Britain, the 50s, 60s and 70s, learning how shopkeepers of the day lived and worked through these key eras of British history. It raises the question of exactly when the golden generation of the high street heyday occurred, with trends pointing for and against in

each era. For example, in the Victorian age the adulteration and bulking up of food with chemicals was common, while Edwardian times saw a rise in the tea shop going hand-in-hand with enabling women to meet and aid the Suffragette movement. The same era also saw shopping as a luxury come of age, when product choice matched customer service thanks to the riches of the empire. The high street then hit a slump, with the next golden age taking 50 years to arrive, when Britain became affluent again. This saw the beginning of the high street morphing into its more familiar modern day look. Mass production and disposable culture really took off, bringing prices down. The youth no longer wanted clothes to last; they wanted fashionable clothes to match the current trend. As the market for clothes soared, the idea of going to a town centre to do your food shopping faded, with it making little sense carrying bags of dripping meat with you to boutiques or for coffee. This, coupled with people’s need to do things as quickly as possible, and the car becoming a feature for every family, has meant that there are now very few butchers and grocers on high streets. Does this mean the worst is behind us? Or is it just evolving to match consumer needs. I’m just excited to see where it takes us next.

Website exclusive

Have your say on all the stories included this week and more online, at www.thecourieronline.

understand the slight worried faces of international leaders as the results were publicised; America does more or less dictate international foreign policy for the rest of the world (or more accurately, the countries that

blindly follow whatever America does). That being said, Obama is not the first, and if I know America, most definitely will not be the last President to lose Congress. Many Presidents before him have managed to fulfil their foreign and domestic policy goals, regardless of the impervious opposition from the opposing party. If George W. Bush can manage to deploy copious amounts of troops to Iraq regardless, it can be more or less certain that Obama will manage to get at least one of his policy goals through. It does strike me as somewhat odd, however, that we’re all in a flutter over one, quite frankly, predictable political outcome. So Obama got, expectedly, crushed in the midterms - big whoop. Honestly, it really shouldn’t bother us. If we want to be as much of an individual country as many fight for us to be (I am in no way referring to UKIP or the BNP, by-the-by), then we need, at some point, to pull away from

America and begin making our own decisions. I do love America (I spent two of my summers there so I ought to really.) I do, however, oppose the apparent pull they appear to have over our country. No other country is influenced as much as we are; even Canada manages to stand up for itself. I know we have ‘special relations’ with America, and agreeably, they have saved our behinds on a few occasions, but that still doesn’t mean that it is essential that we pander to their every whim and do everything they ask. The release of George W. Bush’s memoirs reveals a little more about the UK than we perhaps care to think about. The information surrounding the Iraq war and the decisions made by Tony Blair, most specifically the decision to invade Iraq at whatever the cost, even if it means losing government, both terrify and enthral me and shows just how dangerous our embracing of these ‘special relations’ may actually be.

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


The rise of the alcorexic: How much is too much? Life & Style Editors: Kat Bishop and Mary Mullarkey -

> Page 14 and 15

health A cheaper way to stay healthy

Fiona McCutcheon explores a variety of quick ways to keep fit. Even better... they don’t break the bank.

Forget the gym: Swimming is a cheap and fun way to help maintain fitness. Sessions are perfect for students, and great value for money ; Jesmond pool offers session for £2.40.

The student lifestyle for many of us consists of late nights, a total lack of routine, takeaways and lots of trebles. There are some people out there with ridiculously quick metabolisms who can eat whatever they want and never put on weight (yes, I’m referring to the stick thin girls who sit there eating dominoes every night without gaining a pound...). However, for the majority of us, typical student habits often lead to a ‘oh my god’ moment on the scales. Unfortunately, shifting this unwanted weight can often seem problematic. The student life has its perks, but wild nights out and hangover ‘comfort food’ binging inevitably results in an increase in pounds on the bum and huge decrease in pounds on the bank balance. I am now in third year and am delving so far into my overdraft I’ve forgotten what it even feels like to be in the black. As a result, a gym membership that totals to £160 can be a bit of a setback - unless I’m planning on staying in all term. However, keeping fit doesn’t always have to be expensive. Running costs absolutely nothing and is

one of the best things you can do in terms of overall fitness. So get your trainers on and set yourself a route – try timing yourself to monitor your improvement, working harder each time to do your circuit. For lower impact sports (girls this mainly applies to you) go check out the bike auction outside Morrisons in Byker on a Saturday morning – why walk to University when you can cycle? You can pick up a bike for as little as a tenner at the auction and cycling is a great way to tone your inner thighs and improve your general fitness (plus it’s much quicker!) Swimming is also brilliant for overall fitness and Jesmond pool offers sessions for as little as £2.40 a pop with your student card. For upper body strength, check out where you can find an alarm clock in the shape of a small weight. The alarm won’t shut up until you have done a set amount of bicep curls... Brilliant! Boxfit at Jesmond gym is also great for working your arms and is open to boys and girls on Thursday nights for £4.00. For those of you with iphones try downloading the ‘push up’ app, for those without, visit one- Tend to pack on the weight on your stomach? Sometimes running and cycling just aren’t enough to shift that pesky tyre round your midriff.

Getting a washboard stomach is perfectly achievable outside the gym. Consciously tensing your stomach throughout the day can help to get that washboard look. However, getting a washboard stomach is something perfectly achievable outside the gym. Ever heard of pelvic floor exercises? Well, try the same thing with your stomach; consciously tensing it throughout the day can help to get that washboard look (you can do this with your bum too, just a little less maybe do this one in your own house!) You can also do sit ups at home and for those of you who are looking for something a little more ‘out

there’, Jesmond gym also offers Belly Dancing classes at just £4.00. The classes are a fun way to really focus on your abs and also meet some new people! Diet plays a huge factor in your weight and its takeout food and booze that causes your waist band to buckle. So when you’re craving comfort food try ditching the takeout curry for something homemade. Weight watchers do some amazing recipes that taste great, as well as being good for you and easy to make. Another tip is to avoid buying lunch in Uni – homemade sandwiches and pasta salads are ten times healthier for you than ones that are bought in shops. Looking to get more involved at Uni? Why not join one of the societies. The Pole dancing society offers a fantastic way to get fit quickly and is great value at just £2 a go. For something a little more relaxing, why not try the Yoga society? Classes are held three times a week at Jesmond Church again at the bargain price of £2. With all these options, we really have no excuse. So take a break away from nursing your hangover on the couch and get active!

Doctor, Doctor:

“How do I get rid of cold sores?” Cold sores are the small blister-like cuts that appear at the sides of your mouth and lips and can be accompanied by a sore throat and swollen tonsils. They’re usually caused by the herpes type 1 virus, which can be caught in early childhood when you’re kissed by a person infected with the virus. They can also be caused by the herpes type 2 virus, which is caught during a romantic tryst in later life (not just kissing guys, that’s oral sex too). Cold sore bouts can reoccur at many periods in your life and can be triggered by emotional upset, psychological stress, tiredness, menstruation and strong sunlight. The good news is that even though it’s easy to catch the herpes virus, cold sores can be treated easily and in a pain-free way. The first thing to try is an antiviral cold sore cream which can be bought over the counters in Boots, or any local pharmacist. Good products to go for are Boots own brand lip and cold sore cream, Zovirax cold sore cream and Cymex cold sore lotion. Boots also sells an antiseptic cold sore lotion and if you want to try to cover up the unsightliness of a cold sore, you can buy cold sore patches from Boots or Compeed which help to heal the sore and hide it. You need to apply the creams at least five times a day for around four or five days for the sore to completely heal. If you are suffering from any other illnesses or a low immune system due to antibiotics or long-term illness, you will need to see your GP for specialist treatment as you are at more risk from complications which can lead to worse infections and viruses. Aimee Philipson

Cold sores can be treated by antiseptic creams, such as Zovirax, and Cymex lotion.



Life & Style

Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER



A dangerous game: the new generation of ‘alcorexics’

Anorexia and binge drinking are regular topics of discussion but in the past year, a new phenomenon has surfaced: alcorexia. Sarah Welsh explores the dangers and the emotional and physical affects it has L. MACKENZIE

A big problem: alcorexia is becoming particularly common amongst females who prefer not to consume excess calories in fear of weight gain. They therefore eliminate food from their diet in favour of consuming alcohol.

Anorexia and binge drinking... hot topics that are in the media all too often. Put the two together, and we have the new phenomenon - alcorexia. You may have alcorexia without even knowing it. Granted, the word is only found in the Urban Dictionary, but the meaning behind it is becoming big news. It’s recognised as individuals, particularly females, who prefer not to take in excess calories in fear of weight gain and therefore choose to eliminate food from their diet in favour of consuming calories from alcohol. As women, we are ‘allowed’ 2000 calories a day (as stated by the Food Standards Agency), which many girls analyse religiously. Calorie-counting and calorie cuts are part of pretty much every diet. Alcohol, however, is rarely a diet drink of choice. This presents a social dilemma - deny yourself that glass of wine/pint in the best interests of your waistline? Or, get involved and sack off your diet, despite the consequences. Drinking is integral to social situations, whether to settle our nerves and initiate ‘bonding’ or simply to get involved with the giggles of drinking games. Peer pressure is still oh so alive.

Of course, most of us turn a blind eye to the sky-high calories in alcoholic drinks and just embrace it. But those figure-conscious ones among us are trying to find a way around it, setting off the transformation into alcorexic. As well as controlling calorie intake, another reason to say no to that extra dollop of pasta, or piece of cake, is to fit in that dress without the dreaded ‘food baby.’ Not only does the so-called alcorexic reduce their food intake in view of making up their daily calories in mojitos, but it is a quick-fix way to have a cheap night, and feel the effects of alcohol promptly. By no means am I advertising this as a way to stretch out your student loan or get drunk in a hurry; quite the opposite. It is simply not worth it. However, the effects of the legal high that is alcohol are so undeniable and accepted it’s hard to say no. So, how much energy do we actually drink on a night out? If the ‘alcohol awareness’ campaign has not yet drilled this into you, let’s put calorific value to our alcohol diet. With seven calories per gram, the number of calories in alcohol is second only after fat (9 cals/g). Did you know that a large glass of wine has the same calories as a slice of cake? So now the reason for de-

clining that dessert becomes slightly clearer. And how about a pint of lager – surprised to hear it’s the calorific equivalent of a burger? Here is a breakdown of the main drinks below: 1 pint of lager: 230 calories, 2 units. 1 pint of beer: 182 calories, 2 units. 1 pint of cider: 240 calories, 2 units. 1 shot of spirit: 52 calories, 1 unit. 1 alcopop: 200 calories, 1 unit. 1 glass red wine: 80 calories, 1 unit. You do the maths. Alcorexics sacrifice eating a slice of pizza, a doughnut, a burger, a Danish pastry, a hot dog and a jaffa cake for a combination of drinking an equivalent of three pints of lager, two double measures of spirit with lemonade and two alcopops= a whopping 1175 calories! Along with drinking alcohol comes the temptation to eat fattening snacks – crisps and salted nuts in the pub, and chip shop fare on the way home. Alcorexics, alternatively, decide food or drink, not both. Not as fantastic as you may think. Calories from alcohol are ‘empty

calories’ – they have no nutritional value. And this is where the problems come. A diet of mainly alcohol is obviously not great, and can soon lead to alcoholism, eating disorders, weak bones, heart disease, cancer, diabetes... the list is endless. At the same time, a glass of wine now and then has its health benefits and can be good for the heart.

Alcorexics ensure they do not put on weight from drinking. However, they are doing more damage than they realise by denying themselves essential vitamins and minerals. Obesity is another major problem. On one hand, alcorexics ensure they do not put on weight from drinking, but on the other, they do more damage than they realise by denying essential vitamins and minerals. As with everything in health- a balance is always best. A little of everything here and there is good, just don’t go overboard. The government guidelines recommend that women should not regu-

larly exceed 2-3 units daily and that men should not regularly exceed 3-4 units daily. OK, so binge drinking isn’t going to go away overnight. But do your body a favour and don’t cause longterm damage by denying yourself essential nutrients in return for drunken nights and a model physique. We are human beings, and to function normally, we require nourishment from food. I could go on forever about anorexia, healthy eating and alcohol. But the important thing to remember about alcorexia is that it’s a slang term, not literally anorexia combined with alcoholism. Anorexia nervosa is a serious mental illness with the highest death rate of any psychiatric disorder. It needs to be considered with the joking of diets aside. The same goes for individuals with an alcohol addiction. Still, it is worthwhile bearing in mind that socalled ‘alcorexia’ has the potential to cause either of the above serious health problems. There is no black and white with diet, although it is safe to conclude alcorexia is not the answer. Unfortunately, too many women are willing victims.

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010



Life & Style


Life and Style on Campus: Your views

Students are notorious for drinking too much, but would you deprive yourself of food so you could drink more?

The Penny Pincher #5 Accommodation

Sarah Bennett Columnist

Harriet, 3rd Year

Ben, 1st Year

Pete, 3rd Year

Katy, 3rd Year

A personal experience: A neurotic’s guide to self-help In her final article, our Self-confessed Neurotic asks whether hypnotherapy has changed her A leopard can’t change its spots, according to the old idiom. Actually, a genetic mutation in African and Asian leopards means that they can appear completely black. Anyway, enough of the zoology lesson... I’ve been working with this theory in my attempt to change from a neurotic to a normal person. To help me, I’ve been listening to Paul McKenna, and in the past few weeks I’ve tried really hard. It occurred to me before I began this attempted transformation that it isn’t easy to go through life being anti-social – no matter how easy Hugh Laurie makes it look on House. Before this experience, I was irritable and obsessive-compulsive with a hideous temper. What’s more, I would rant and rave about complete strangers - I don’t mean a simple, irritated Facebook comment; I mean a full-blown, blood vessel-bursting rage, full of indignation and fury. However, the whole idea of embarking on this endeavour was to

change me outwardly, not to change my personality. By some miracle, I have friends that like me for who I am, and it was for their sake as much as mine that I needed to relax a bit. The basic concept that the Paul McKenna CD comes down to is “Fake it ‘til you make it”. I finally managed to listen to the recording the whole way through, and McKenna tells you to “think of someone who you consider to be very confident” and then asks you to mimic their behaviour. It’s been three or four weeks now, and honestly, I’m not completely different. I’m still irritable, and sometimes I still fly into a rage. My neurotic tendencies remain, but are more controlled now. Instead of flying off the handle, I just rearrange the kitchen cupboards calmly. I’ve changed my diet slightly, which has actually helped a lot more than I thought it would. I’ve lost a fair amount of weight, which surprised me – did I really eat enough chocolate to maintain an extra 10

kilograms? In a house with three other girls, all of whom have petite figures, just dropping a bit of weight has made me much more confident, despite the fact that I still can’t share clothes with them. I still wobble every now and then – after all, everyone has a bad day once in a while. Recently, I got upset when I found out that my friends were going to a show, but nobody had even told me about it, let alone invited me. Instead of talking to them about it, I got paranoid: either they don’t like me and don’t want me around, or they just didn’t remember to ask me because I’m easily forgotten. Everyone feels like this at some point, and for years I’ve made the same mistake with these feelings. I’ve bottled them up inside and let them take over. I know this is wrong, and as much as I hate people who say “it helps to talk”, they’re actually right. It dawned on me that talking helps not just because it gets things off your chest, but because someone else’s

perspective can highlight things that you never even thought of. Bearing all of this in mind, I can see that this self-help business has changed me in ways I’d never imagined. My attitude is improved, I’m a lot more relaxed, and I’ve become more introspective. Introspection is a tool that I’ve previously avoided, but it’s a necessity if you want to change, and sometimes it uncovers some surprising things. Paul McKenna’s Instant Confidence was never meant to be a quick-fix solution, but considering that I found it for free and it only lasts 30 minutes, it was worth a shot. I’ve had lots of support from my friends, and it’s thanks to them that I can leave some of my neurotic tendencies behind. It’s taken me a month to learn that changing how you act is like changing your diet: it takes time, effort, and some good support networks. Still, if leopards can change, why can’t humans?

If you are already looking for next year’s accommodation: stop, think and don’t worry about it just yet. November is the start of the big push for houses, and many letting agents are going to try and persuade you to come and look at houses. I’ve already had phone calls from my letting agents, letting me know that I can be the ‘first’ to know about all the houses available for next year. Rumours will go around that there aren’t enough houses and you’ll panic and probably sign for the first mould-ridden house you see. But I can’t stress enough that there is no rush for houses. I was on my year abroad last year and still managed to get myself a house in the summer. Putting the penny pinching hat on and searching for a house later on, meant that there were houses that landlords and letting agents desperately wanted to fill. This gave me and my flatmates the opportunity to negotiate on price with our landlord. In the end, we’re paying £11 less a week, compared to when it was first advertised in November/December. Don’t be afraid to negotiate prices, there’s a 50 per cent chance that they’ll say yes so it’s worth doing. This applies to contracts too. As well as negotiating prices, you can negotiate contract points. My flatmates and I managed to negotiate the tenancy duration so it could include our graduation dates. The only exception to this rule is if you want a house for more than six people, but this has its downsides too. Perhaps you’ve found eight friends you really want to live with next year, because you’re really tight and don’t ever want to be parted from them. It is worth having a look for larger houses, but if you’re thinking that more people means cheaper bills, beware. Combined you’ll use more energy and there is bound to be some argument at some point about the amount of time some people spend in the shower or how often you have the heating on. If you are worried though, a good place to start looking is the University Property Management Service. You can search for houses, or if you’re on your own, a room in a shared house. Additionally, they don’t charge agency fees, plus some bills are also included. If you ever need any help with accommodation and tenancy agreements, the Student Advice Centre is always willing to help. My advice for looking around houses is to be positive – imagine your stuff there, not the current tenant’s. And make sure you’re happy with who you’re going to live with! Next week: Eating out...


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

Life & Style Sex & Relationships

sex & relationships double blind date

Dangerous Liaisons

The more the merrier; Pamela Mardle, Naomi Boorman, Lloyd McMillain & Richard Hirson take on the first ever Courier double date

#5 First Date

The boys said:

Seeing as I have volunteered myself to take part in The Courier’s first exclusive “Double Blind Date” this week, I thought it’d be quite apt (and maybe a useful reminder for my preparation) to discuss the ‘dos and don’ts’ of first dates. I’ll be perfectly honest, I am completely underqualified to claim expertise in this field: my last date concluded with the ex crying on my shoulder at a bus stop. The weekly phone call from Mum rings in and I let her know about the evening’s plans – silence, followed by laughter. You can always rely on parents for the vote of confidence. “Please don’t let me down.” What on Earth does she think this is? It’s a date, not a terror threat. I ask her why she is so dubious about my behaviour on this date. “It’s been a while, Pam”. I am blisteringly aware of that, mother. After yet more giggling, she leaves me with the reassurance that at least I have made her day. Great, even my forged love life is primarily a source of entertainment for the parents. So far, so unimpressed. So what is the etiquette on a first meeting? The first impression: to kiss or not to kiss? And then there’s the spine tingly cringey conundrum of leaning the same way to kiss… The heads move in, the time before your faces touch is quickly running out and the direction he is heading towards can’t yet be made out. Once this moment has been overcome (and no noses have been broken), the rest of the date can go on smoothly in the reassurance that the worst part is over. That is, unless he is an absolute fool of course. Then you have at least two more hours of humouring him before your emergency call from the flatmate saves you in the nick of time. Yes, your ferret being trapped in the sink plug IS a genuine situation that must be dealt with immediately. Then there’s the obvious, yet unspoken issue of who pays. The modern day woman would at least suggest going Dutch, but if the credit card comes out before you can utter your offer, keep schtum. It’s always a safe bet to buy the first round and gage the rest of the night by what he drinks. If he orders a VK, you’re going halves (and possibly dating a pre-pubescent schoolboy – best to check his ID); if he goes straight in for the most expensive wine on the list, then we can only hope he’s planning on returning the favour later on. Bearing all this in mind, I’m sure it’ll go out of the window the minute I take my first sip of wine, and the lady-like composure I hope to put across will disappear with my sobriety. Wish me luck!

When most men hear the phrase ‘double date’ they immediately think one thing...foursome; and this is exactly what was on our minds as all four of us got a taxi back to Jesmond at half past two in the morning. As we sat there in Pitcher and Piano waiting for our dates to arrive, we were quietly confident that our average looks and sensational chat would lead to an enjoyable evening. When they did arrive it was obvious that they were here for the same reasons as we were; to have a good time. Unfortunately, our blind date starter pack of condoms, lube and a whip was poorly received... As we moved on to Gusto it was clear that Naomi was a big believer in Dutch courage....we decided not to take this too personally. Supper went smoothly; bar an awkward five minutes where we thought they had done a runner. This aside, we both realised that we had been very lucky as it was clear that they were two fun girls. After the meal we moved onto Florita’s for a few more drinks and hopefully to get some action. Not long after 2am we were all in a taxi back to Jesmond for what they kept referring to as the “photo shoot for The Courier”; but we knew what was really going on. As soon as the door was open, Pam and Naomi were up the stairs like a rat up a drainpipe. Sensing an opportunity we followed closely behind; excited

Pamela Mardle Columnist

by what was about to happen. Unfortunately, much to our disappointment, when we find ourselves in the bedroom all they had out were their cameras...gutted. After we ensured their cameras were put away, the real fun commenced. Lights off, candles lit and Bublé doing what he does best...the blind date starter pack was about to come into its own. As we all know gentleman never tell, unfortunately for them we are no gents...we all woke up satisfied with our blind date. The girls said: The date was set for 7pm at Pitcher & Piano on the Quayside for predinner drinks. Safe in the knowledge that the seven degrees of separation were on our side, we could be certain that our company was going to be relatively ‘normal’. We

arrived fashionably on time – the taxi turning out to be the first and last thing we paid for. Walking in, the boys stood up to greet us (with two kisses), proving their very gentlemanly ways. This chivalry was a sign of good things to come. After some wine, we felt warmed up and well acquainted for the night. Our reserved table at Gusto was calling so we headed across to order more wine. The restaurant was an excellent choice, and provided the perfect setting for what was to be a lovely meal. Lots of travelling chatter, private jokes (salute) and a few embarrassing stories later, Naomi was beginning to feel rather under the influence. Despite this, we must have made a relatively good impression as Rich seemed pretty keen to set up a second double date camping in the Lakes! We took heed of Lloyd’s previous warning not to order dessert unless we were going to

“put out” and our sweet tooth went unsatisfied. True to tradition, the boys settled the bill and we made our way outside into the Newcastle chill, prompting Rich to use a “Baltic” pun. We all jumped in a taxi to Florita’s, where the real drinking began: the Sambuca came out and daiquiris were aplenty. We soon became aware that none of the pictures we had taken so far were suitable for The Courier, so decided to head back to Rich’s pad for our bedtime photo shoot. This proved to be a somewhat difficult but comedic task. The midnight munchies kicked in and we decided to get a late night snack from the infamous Mistletoe Bakery, a first time experience for the girls! As the date drew to a close, we felt well fed and entertained. It was a first-class date and we utterly enjoyed our night with two of Newcastle’s most eligible young men.

madame vs monsieur


Our agony duo Madame & Monsieur tackle the issue of ‘Mumma lovin’’ I’ve been going out with my local girlfriend for about 6 months now and all is going well. However, for the past few weeks her recently divorced mum has been hitting on me. At first it was funny but now it makes me really uncomfortable and I have been avoiding going round. My girlfriend has now started to ask whether I dislike her mother. What should I tell her? I don’t want to make things difficult between her and her mum, but I also don’t want to lie to my girlfriend.


Ditch the girlfriend. She’s obviously stupid if she can’t see her mother rubbing your leg as she reaches for

her cup of tea or playing footsie during Sunday roast. Although, as Monsieur has asked; is she a ‘milf’? Life’s short, you might as well get it while you can - “all is going well” doesn’t make it sound like you’re planning weddings and baby names with her daughter. You’ve got to see it from your girlfriend’s mum’s point of view; she’s rejected, lonely. Her daughter is getting more action than she’ll be likely to

see for a while and flaunting this fresh flesh and tight buns right in front of her. It’s hardly likely to get any easier, and you’ll live in fear that she’ll try and creep in on you in the middle of the night. Get yourself a Jesmond girlfriend, less of a walk and no having to make sure someone is occupied by Coronation Street when you do the dirty deed.

Monsieur First of all, you need to answer some important questions: is this frisky mother fairly young? Is she fit? Would anyone refer to her as a ‘milf’? And does she dislike Marmite? If the answer to all of these questions is yes, then I can see why you are having problems, so stay away from your girl’s place. Try to come up with another reason that you can’t go round; if she has a pet, you’re allergic to it; if she has a little brother/sister, you find them annoying, and so on. I’m sure you can think of something. Alternatively take the completely opposite strategy, try to expose your girlfriend to her mother’s inappropriateness; hopefully she’ll soon put a stop to it herself. If the answer to my original questions is no, then you need to quit your jibber jabber and get some nuts, tell the old hag that even if you were single you wouldn’t go there, then tell her to go shave her chin. Bonne chance mon ami!

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


Food & Drink Life & Style

food & drink

Pot noodle or the homemade hot pot?

Harriet Wood argues that student cooking doesn’t have to follow the stereo-typical lazy lifestyle

Now, I’m not suggesting that the average student ought to strive to be the next Heston Blumenthal, but eating is an inevitable part of life and you may as well do it properly. Whether you eat to live or live to eat, the nutritional content of your diet will have an enormous impact on your energy levels, your skin, your digestive system and even your libido. 75% of our salt intake comes from processed foods, transforming something potentially healthy such as vegetable soup into a recipe for heart disease. In fact, we can produce something tastier easily and cheaply by roasting and blending winter vegetables with stock, for instance. It is important for us to set good eating practices now, rather than counting on our young metabolisms until we suddenly wake up middle-aged and overweight. It’s not about Atkins or cabbage soup: we’re talking about solid, balanced meals with the odd pudding or bit of chocolate thrown in. Yet, students with the most awful diets seem to possess a strange pride in their inability or lack of de-

sire to cook. Cupboards full of Super Noodles and Uncle Ben’s sauces are gleeful displays of their slovenly lifestyles. For some, it is a refusal to be domesticated or grown-up, maybe for women it could represent a refusal to be stereotyped as homely or motherly. In reality however, cooking is an essential skill for anyone; to be able to entertain, as well as feed yourself, is something that will be invariably useful throughout the rest of your life. It seems strange in fact that students are so often associated with convenience foods and ready meals, when most of us have a considerable amount of free time on our hands. There’s no excuse for microwave pasta dishes, with quick cook pasta you can have a tasty homemade meal in minutes. The vast majority of us can afford to be a little bit less dedicated to that Sunday afternoon Come Dine With Me marathon, or to cut back just a smidgen on our Facebook stalking and YouTube surfing if time is really an issue. It is time to fall in love with food again. Who doesn’t look forward to big, succulent roast dinners when they go home to visit their parents? We can recreate this ourselves so easily. To quote the Disney film Ratatouille, I genuinely believe that ‘anyone can cook!’ So get back in the kitchen and get involved! Bon appétit.

Kat Bannon believes that hectic schedules do not allow us to cook and prepare proper meals Don’t get me wrong; fresh food is the best food - even a Morrison’s finest of the finest range Spag Bol will never taste better than a home prepared one. However, it’s not quite as simple as ip dip dip. Although the cardboard coat to my plastic wrapped dinner may advertise how it contains half my daily salt allowance and twice my saturated fat, it also tells me that I’ll have the time to watch an episode of Friends and check my email. Meanwhile, that bag of peppers I bought with the good intention of making fajitas is laughing at me from the safety of the fridge. It knows I’ll spend at least 10 minutes trying to find a chopping board and a sharp enough knife, then another 10 making sure they’re clean because some of my housemates thinks Salmonella is a type of fish. More than an hour later when I finally have something that remotely resembles Mexican cuisine I’m no longer hungry. The wait for a free hob led to me snacking on half a box of dry cornflakes and some crackers. It’s not all bad though, because I

can freeze the leftovers for tea the next day. Except I’m in Sheffield for a hockey match and the day after that is training so I’ll just grab a sandwich before I go. Fridays equal Bar Blanc and three pound burger and chips. That bag of peppers is still laughing. I’ve been brought up on a range of Birdseye frozen chicken, Goodfellows pizzas and the M&S chilled Italian range. Alright, perhaps I’m not being entirely fair. Our usual ten meal turn around also includes home cooked Spaghetti Bolognese, Stew (Scouse), and the only look in Aunt Bessie gets in our roast dinners is the Yorkshire puds. Nonetheless, it fails to change the fact that our curry sauce has always been made courtesy of Uncle Ben and our lasagne sings ‘When’sa your Dolmio day!’ as it’s put on the table. So you can imagine, when I arrived at uni to find flatmates that came with their own spice racks I was somewhat disillusioned. I’m not completely useless. Just, quite frankly, I haven’t got the time to organise buying fresh food, cleaning surfaces, and making sure I remember that I need to use my remaining chicken in the next two days when I’d rather be watching Rachel tell Ross they weren’t on a break for the googolplex time. E. WILSON

review Firenze, Jesmond 7 Osborne Road Tel: 0191 2812136 Yet another typical cold and windy autumn night in Newcastle met us as we stepped off the metro at West Jesmond. Hoping for a very ‘untypical’ evening a five minute brisk walk led us to be greeted by the welcoming lights of tonight’s Italian eatery Firenze; just a stone’s throw away from the bustling hotspot of Osborne Road, neatly tucked away it sits in its own humble courtyard. Firenze is perhaps destined to be one of Jesmond’s finest Italian eateries, a secluded gem. As we headed upstairs we were greeted by Firenze co-owner Gavin and shown swiftly to a table giving us the perfect view of the whole restaurant. Taking the appearance of an old barn, Firenze has a stylish but inviting decor, finely finished with beautiful black and white Italian-esque pictures oozing Italian charm. The ambiance was both warm and pleasant, inviting for any occasion. Just as we’d settled down the menus arrived and our drinks order was taken almost instantly. As there were no wine drinkers in our party of two, I instantly noticed the lack of Italian lagers on draft. This mild disappointment was quickly rectified as an ice cold bottle of Peroni accompanied with a chilled glass promptly arrived at our table. The extensive menu showcased what

you are what you eat... Jilly Clark takes a look at what a late night takeaway means for your waistline Cheesy Chips

One of the most popular student snacks is cheesy chips, making the kindest reading of 350- 400 calories but dripping with an average of 10g saturated fat (50% guideline daily amount).

Donner Kebab A regular donner kebab contains 469 calories and 14g saturates. Not only this but you’re also running the risk of eating animal (or human) genitals with this delicious takeout. And if female, chances are high of being chatted up by the greasy vendor who serves you this.

Domino’s Pizza

Firenze: Taking the appearance of an old barn, it has a stylish and inviting decor, oozing with Italian charm in the heart of Jesmond

the head chef Graeme Temple called “the very best of Italian cuisine” with “freshly baked foccacia bread and homemade panna cottas to seasonal risottos and freshly made pizza doughs”. So with a cold beer in hand we selected our dishes, excited to share the ‘passion for food and culinary traditions’ which Firenze promises to you. As the next table’s food was whisked past my senses were delighted. So to start we opted for a sharing platter of bruschettas, offering one of each topping of the four available bruschettas on the menu. Rustically served on a bread board for some aesthetically pleasing extra Italian zing, this was definitely the highlight of my dining experience, simple but exquisite and leaving me excited for more. As soon as knife

and fork touched down the plates were hastily cleared and the mains followed within minutes. Already feeling a little full we dived full throttle into a Calzone Italiano (£7.25) and a pasta Amatriciana (£6.25). The calzone, although it’s outward appearance was daunting and bland, oozed the delicious flavours and colours of Italian cuisine. A big lip-smacking thumbs up! The pasta also satisfied my student palette, although maybe slightly too much pasta and not enough pancetta, mushroom and onions. As my waist belt was almost cutting into my sides the dessert menu was brought over, in an effort to enjoy a sample of all three courses we shared a little slice of chocolate heaven with a warm chocolate brownie and vanilla ice cream.

The service was smiley and very attentive. In my opinion a bit of fine tuning would definitely make Firenze my perfect ‘premier Italian dining’ experience. Keen to try alfresco style dining accompanied with a few more Italian delights I will definitely be back once the warmer months roll in. Firenze definitely caters for both spectrums of the markets, hosting a series of promotional offers to help loosen those tight purse strings, including two courses each, plus two glasses of wine, for two people for just £20. Other offers include the Sunday Lunch Crunch from just £6.95, Happy Hour and an excellent express lunch deal where you can dine on 3 courses for under £10. Harriet Webb

If you’re a more affluent student and prefer the option of a Domino’s then you may want to think again, or stop reading now. A 14” pepperoni deep crust with a coke and that scrummy pot of garlic sauce will set you back a whopping 3,620 calories and 52g of saturated fat (264% of your GDA).

McDonald’s Big Mac

McDonald’s is another takeaway favourite, pulling in hordes of drunken students. A regular Big Mac meal with a Coke and not forgetting that free McFlurry with your student card comes to a tidy total of 1,485 calories and a mere 18.5g saturated fat.


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER


Scotland: The great outdoors Harriet Webb jumps, climbs, and swims her way through some popular Scottish adventure activites

Ten Minute Travel Natalie Taylor spends a day in Whitley Bay

Scapa Scuba: It’s not quite the Great Barrier Reef, but the wild Orkney Islands are sure to keep you entertained, offering diving courses suitable for all abilities for as little as £70

The feeling of an adrenaline rush is like no other; intense, fun and definitely nothing but heart pumping action that you’ll never forget. Yet there is always a problem when looking for adventure; it normally comes with a big price tag. With a bit of investigation, however, you can find some budget thrill-seeking action right on your door step. So why not take a road trip? Pack up a tent, lots of warm clothes, a couple of crates of beer or cider, whatever tickles your fancy, and hit the glorious A1. There’s no better time to start the adventure than right away so take a trip to Middlesbrough just 38 miles away and visit the Transporter Bridge, which is fast becoming one of the most impressive and famous bungee jump sites in the world. After climbing the longest 210 steps of your life, the adrenaline making you short of breath, you can take in the view from 160ft before you hear the dreaded, blood draining words ‘3-2-1 BUNGEE’ and plummet towards the river Tees. The thrill will be no less gutwrenching than if you were leaping from South Africa’s Bloukrans Bridge. As the blood rushes to your head, feeling high on life, a waiting boat will pluck you from the air and whisk you to dry land. With Bungee UK you can enjoy a jump for approximately £45 each, and groups

can get cheaper deals. After this exhilarating experience jump back in your car and start the journey up towards the magnificent Scotland. Drive the 3 hours and 160 miles towards Edinburgh, take a stop for a night here (hostels cost approximately £10-£20 a night), go out and explore the magnificent city and the culture in all its glory. The next morning head towards Aberfeldy, a 75 mile journey which will fly by because of the beautiful scenery and countryside. Even on a budget there are plenty of camp sites in beautiful locations.

There are plenty of cheap camp sites set in beautiful locations on the river Tay, or close to the centre of Aberfeldy Pitch up your tent, walk into the town for lunch followed by an afternoon of adventure, thrills and spills with white-knuckle White Water Rafting Scotland, parents of Activity Scotland. Try your hand at the stomachchurning rapids and roller coaster drops, costing about £45 per person. If a combo of activities sounds elec-

trifying, some of the other activities available are quad biking, canoeing, 4x4 safari and clay pigeon shooting. Two activities cost about £89, but save one for the next day in order to prolong the adventure as long as possible. There are another handful of cheaper activities available so if you fancy Downhill Mountain Biking you can rent a bike for £10 for a half day, or £15 for a full day. Camp for a couple of nights and enjoy cheap living, beers by the tent, disposable barbecues and reminisce about the day’s stories and adventures. Slightly more physically demanding is the 1334 metres high climb up Ben Nevis, in Fort William, but who can resist a bit of free adventure? Travel to Fort William, which is a little less that 90 miles, and pitch up tent in one of the many campsites in and around Glen Nevis, situated at the base of Ben Nevis, for less than £5 each a night. Ben Nevis is the highest mountain in the British Isles, so feel free to hang up those walking boots after completing the ultimate walk. In the evening explore Fort William; it is a major tourist centre and the largest settlement in the region after Inverness. If your budget is still going strong only another 220 miles to the north lays the Orkney Islands. Orkney of-

fers Scottish Scuba Diving. Not quite the Great Barrier Reef but Scapa Scuba offers a huge range of courses on your door step; an opportunity not to be missed. The great location of the scuba sites means you can do a wreck dive in all dives. Why not ‘try a dive’ for £70 on a Blockship wreck at the Churchill Barriers which were sunk between 1915 and 1940 to protect the British Naval Fleet in Scapa Flow? This half-day course is available to everyone who has never dived before. It is run on a one-to-one basis with direct instructor supervision throughout, making it completely safe and personalised to you and your needs. Alternatively, take part in guided dives, PADI courses or various speciality courses that get as advanced as the dive masters course. There are a handful of campsites and caravan sites situated in Orkney so stay for a night or a couple of nights before you embark on the long trip home. Finally, a few handy tips to make the most out of your student budget: go in a group of four or more to save money on petrol; in campsites you pay per tent per night, so take a big tent; in hostels its always cheaper to share a room between four or more of you, and last but not least, pack some much needed food and those very important crates of beer. Half the price but not half the fun!

So, for only £3.80 you can jump on the Metro with a return ticket to Whitley Bay! Only two stops away from Tynemouth, this seaside town offers a fun day out. First stop would have to be Pantrini’s on Marine Avenue for delicious fish and chips. Either take them out for a seaside walk or sit in the cosy restaurant away from the probable autumn chill. Only a couple of doors away are the arcades, where you can spend all those spare pennies or waste those 20ps to try and win a teddy (impossible). When you’re done here, head down to the Whitley Bay strip. OK, it may not match Ibiza and Malia, but fun all the same. If you’re with flatmates, friends or parents, and want a quiet drink, there are plenty of pubs to choose from, like The Bedroom for example. There is also a lighthouse to view, bingo to play and as mentioned earlier, the lovely beach. Whitley Bay playhouse is the host of many shows and plays: look on the website for details. You could also lend your support to Whitley Bay FC, current FA Vase holders. For those of you wanting a different type of sightseeing, listen up. There is an aspect of Whitley Bay that is hardly hidden, as my flatmate’s mum recently found out: strip bars! On a Sunday afternoon, so called ‘day of rest’, she tried to enter pubs but nowhere would let her in. Yes, the strip bars were in full swing; it is apparently not a hidden or seedy thing here. Stripping or no stripping, Whitley Bay is actually a good night out if you’re bored of the usual Newcastle haunts. It is very popular with hen nights and stag dos so be prepared for plenty of pink fluffy boas all around. Although it is technically listed as a Tynemouth attraction, the Blue Reef Aquarium is a short walk from Whitley Bay. For £7.00 with a student card, be entertained by hundreds of multicoloured fish, sea monkeys and the new Amazon feature.

St. Mary’s Lighhouse: With stunning views, this is Whitley Bay’s top attraction.

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


In his shoes: should we make the effort? > Page 21

Coming soon to a cinema near you

Guest film writer Burhana Islam casts her cinematic eye over the catwalk’s unlikely muses In the perfect world we’d all prefer to believe that what we wear represents who we are. That may be true, but what is the secret to this stylistic success? As much as we’d like to delude ourselves into thinking we have a natural knack for creativity, the truth is, we are impersonators at heart. And our muse? The encapsulating world of cinema. It’s a surprise we hadn’t sussed it out sooner, but fashion and film have been intertwined for generations. From as far back as the sixties, trends have been taken from the big screen and worn by both Hollywood and the high street. Who can forget fashion legend Audrey Hepburn introducing Givenchy’s iconic black dress in Breakfast at Tiffany’s? The garment has evolved little since then and became known as the timeless wardrobe essential; the LBD (Little Black Dress). Placed against a simple pearl necklace and those oversized shades, the sixties swing proves it is as contemporary as ever with our favourite high street chains forever endorsing the image. Pressing fast forward to the trends of the silver screen in the mid eighties, Madonna was undoubtedly style queen. Love her or hate her, she was the beginning of biker beauty with her role in Desperately Seeking Susan. The artist encouraged the leather jacket look, the netted floral prints, and leggings that are now a wardrobe staple for any fashionista. That’s not all though, we forgot to mention the chunky beading and bright red lips that became synonymous with the material girl. Unfortunately it does sound all too familiar, especially since her iconic lace fingerless gloves have been resurrected this autumn; we are the mini Madonnas of our time. We’ve not been the only ones pilfering from the pictures either. For Paris Couture Week, fashion designer Jean Paul


Jean Paul Gaultier’s Avatar-esque collection showing film and fashion’s partnership

Gaultier created a catwalk collection inspired by James Cameron’s blockbuster Avatar. Gaultier’s runway beautifully captured the vibrant 3D feature and made it a feast for the eyes; the line was almost as impressive as the film itself. Spring/Summer 2010 was all about the big screen phenomenon, so much so that Vogue US paid a ten page tribute to the blue skinned tribe. The makers of AX Paris and Apricot made sure the Garden of Eden glamour lived on in the season’s maxi dresses. Little did we know we were a walking homage of the year’s most anticipated sci-fi fantasy. Not bad for a bunch of UFOs is it? Avatar wasn’t the only movie to create a lasting impression during the summer. Tim Burton and Johnny Depp’s latest collaboration, Alice in Wonderland, led to masses of fans swarming to stores for the latest designs. We’re not talking about the masses of merchandise spawned from the IMAX sensation, rather the burlesque movement that followed. It came to such a point that the Bigg Market was littered with lace bodysuits, inspired by the styling detail of a reworked classic. River Island however took a different approach; Burton’s adaptation inspired simple trinkets such as clock necklaces, pastel cuff bracelets, and Victorian infused hair pieces. Once the film hit the flicks, everyone wanted their own piece of Wonderland. It’s not just what’s on screen that encourages fashion but rather what happens when the cameras stop rolling. How many times have you picked up a glossy magazine and envied the Emmy image? We may not be able to pull off ball gowns on a daily basis but they are still our muses. We might shorten our skirts slightly and pay a tad less but the idea’s the same. Remember when you attempted those Eva Longoria-Parker

smoky eyes? How about Blake Lively’s copycat clutch and courts? Or maybe ask yourself why half of our hair dos are styled from the pages of glossy magazines. It doesn’t stop at the Oscars, celebrity launch parties give us something we can steal straight up; especially when we can get the look for less. How did you know those high-waisted black shorts went with that top? Could it have possibly been because you’ve seen Sarah Jessica Parker pull it off first? Speaking of which, how can I forget the four words that epitomise style? Sex and the City. It’s common knowledge that Carrie Bradshaw introduced our

It’s not just what’s on screen that encourages fashion but rather what happens when the cameras stop rolling generation to fashion literacy. Nothing is more effective than the clan of women whose sole intention is to own as many Fendi bags and Manolos as possible. Apparently Debenhams seemed to think so too when they launched their own SATC summer line to celebrate its success. Whether you choose to believe it or not, fashion and film are possibly the closest coupled concepts in cultural history. This idea has been emphasised profoundly over the last decade. The silver screen has waged war against our wardrobe, and fortunately, it’s winning. It’s comes to such a point that features such as Confessions of a Shopaholic and The Devil wears Prada make costume just as focal as the storyline itself. So next time you need a bit of inspiration, we’ll see you at the cinema.

A design decade in the world of Temperley London Katie Lauren Henry profiles one of the most coveted and sought-after labels on the red carpet

Born in 1975, Alice Temperley grew up in rural Somerset on her parents’ cider farm; a life that is very different from the one she has built for herself over the past ten years. After expressing a passion for designing from an early age, Alice graduated from the Royal College of Art in London. She began her life as a designer in a humble one bedroom flat in Notting Hill, and is now one of the most influential fashion designers in Britain, boasting a huge international following. Alice launched her fashion label, Temperley London, in 2000 at London Fashion Week. She established the first Temperley boutique in London’s trendy Notting Hill two years later, building a home above the store with her husband (investment banker turned financial director of Temperley London, Lars von Bennigsen). In 2003 her second boutique store was opened in New York, and she went on to successfully launch stores in Los Angeles (2005) and Dubai (2008). Today the brand is sold in 37 countries, and her collections are stocked

in over 200 shops worldwide. Temperley London produce four collections a year; a highly sought-after ‘Ready-To-Wear’ line, a bridal collection, accessories and the ‘Black Label’ collection of gorgeous evening dresses exclusively designed to ‘wow’ on the red carpet and the ones constantly featured in magazine’s “best dressed” lists. Flowing to the ground and finished with intricate beadwork, Temperley London’s beautiful dresses embody feminine charm. The passion for fashion that consumes Alice is certainly evident in the attention to detail she dedicates to each of her designs. Additional touches such as hand-beading, embroidery and sequin embellishments are all trademarks of the Temperley design ethos. This high level of craftsmanship along with the luxurious fabrics used in her creations, allows Alice to produce timeless pieces that are oozing with elegance and good old fashioned glamour. It is therefore not surprising that fashonistas such as Keira Knight-

ley; Emma Watson; Scarlett Johansson and Sarah Jessica Parker are all fans of Alice Temperley, plumping for her designs at numerous red carpet events. The Temperley Bridal range launched in 2007 and had celebrities lining up to walk down the aisle in Alice’s ornate gowns. This included Resident Evil actress Milla Jovovich - the actress chose the stunningly simple ‘Long Muse Dress’ from the collection, teaming it with a floral headdress to create a beautiful bohemian ensemble. The most recent addition to the Temperley design family is ‘ALICE’, the sister label to Temperley London. This line, launched in 2010, already has an impressive following with the likes of Daisy Lowe; Beyoncé; Jessica Biel and Rhianna all wearing items from the affordable range. ALICE captures British spirit and personifies the rock ‘n’ roll lifestyle of the fashion capital that is London. It does appear, however, that the latest project undertaken by husband and wife duo, Temperley London, is a little

more countryside than couture. The couple have recently purchased a home in Somerset, where Alice spent many happy years as a child. They plan to split their time between this family home (where they will raise their son) and London (where the business is based). The fashion empire is in total a family affair, with Alice’s sister heading-up the sales team for this fairy tale brand. From modest beginnings in a pokey flat and with a lot of hard work and patience, Temperley London has evolved into an incredibly successful fashion empire. The story of Alice’s self made wonderland really is the stuff great fairy tales are made of, something that Temperley channels into every one of their designs.

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Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

Fashion Red carpet glamour

Three steps to get Hollywood glamour

The party season has arrived and Milly Simon shows us how to get the red carpet look for less Embellishment - team a vintage embellished top with a leather skirt to create a show-stopping outfit with a variety of textures. Complete the look with some high-gloss patent heels available from many high street stores to fit any budget.




Colour - Cerulean blue is the colour for a bold red carpet statement this season. Add a quirky edge á la Carrie Bradshaw with this feather hair piece and complete with some black platform heels so that the colour becomes the focal point of this Oscar-winning ensemble.




Has red carpet glamour changed in the past 50 years?

Sylvie Hall argues there has been a new “golden age” in the noughties ,while Aimee Philipson maintains that Hollywood glamour has not changed one bit since the age of screen sirens Some things never change; the litres of hairspray, the control pants (or girdles in those days), the loan of top designer dresses and of course, the hot arm candy, will always be the main ingredients for attending red carpet events. However, the ‘glamour’ associated with the 1950s red carpet, and the eccentric free-for-all that descends on the rouge pavements these days, are two very different things. Think Grace Kelly, Elizabeth Taylor and Marilyn Monroe. They were elegant, glamorous and ladylike with their knee to floor length dresses (hiding luxurious corsets, stockings and suspenders – even the underwear was glamorous!), wellcoiffed hair and immaculate makeup yet they still oozed sexiness, whether it was a well-practised smile or a seductive pose, they didn’t resort to flashing their tattoos or the tops of their thighs for attention. It was this element of mystery which made female celebrities attractive – and of course the wonderful tailoring of the 1950s. Nipped-in waists, high necklines or low with just the right amount of cleavage and the circle or high-waisted skirts which define this era are the perfect

styles for creating or enhancing curves and emphasising your best bits, so it’s unfortunate that this glamorous, shapeloving mysterious elegance has been ditched for tabloid-grabbing, attentionseeking, ‘fashionable’ styles such as belts for tops (á la Jodie Marsh), barely-there dresses (a la Katy Perry, Cheryl Cole and Kate Moss), underwear as outerwear (á la Rihanna and Paris Hilton) and ridiculous outfits made from household items (á la Lady Gaga’s telephone attire). It does seem, however, that a number of classy celebrities, including Kate Winslet, Sandra Bullock, Julia Roberts and Penélope Cruz are beginning to realise that to avoid the ‘worst-dressed’ lists and to top the ‘hottest female’ lists you only have to look back to the beginning of the last half century for fail-safe, beautiful styles to wow on the red carpet. The perfect example is American actress Christina Hendricks. She’s been splashed all over the press for the last few months (including GQ Magazine, Esquire and Grazia) and it isn’t her larger-than-average chest, her acting skills or her beautiful red hair that’s making the headlines – it’s her classic,

1950s inspired wardrobe which brings all her other gorgeous attributes together for a stunning red carpet package.

Kate Winslet: a Hollywood style icon

A Hollywood veteran recently declared that old Hollywood glamour was dead and that the world was “starved of gorgeous people.” In the same interview for Hello magazine (October 2010), Joan Collins described Jennifer Aniston as “not beautiful”. This being the woman whose hair cut in the hit US TV show, Friends sparked thousands of women to request a “Rachel” style at the hairdressers. Therefore, if Hollywood glamour is defined by an obsession with beauty and sex appeal then it is most certainly still alive in the film industry today, with the glamour and art of impersonation remaining unchanged; just the objects of our admiration are new. The size zero trend of the noughties may not be similar to the hourglass curves fashion of the 1950s, yet the notion of a preferable body image for women has never been more of an issue. These days we admire the looks of Cameron Diaz and Megan Fox whereas our 1950s counterparts looked up to Marilyn Monroe and Grace Kelly. In the 2005 blockbuster Mr and Mrs Smith, the stars oozed glamour and sophistication; the sexual chemistry

between the two leads electrifying the screen. Jolie’s portrayal of her character Jane Smith as an independent, smart and captivatingly good-looking woman was as much a femme fetale as the film stars of the so-called ‘golden age’. Hollywood today does most certainly advocate the same sense of glamour and fame that made it successful in the 40s and 50s. It is only unfortunate that in our day and age, the definition of celebrity has become somewhat changed, as any episode of a reality TV show would suggest. However, actresses such as Kate Winslet are still flying the flag for ‘old school’ glamour with a contemporary twist, adorned in spectacular designer creations on the red carpet. In Hollywood today, we covet the garments of acclaimed actresses as they glide down the red carpet at movie premieres in an attempt to recreate the glamour of Hollywood we so admire. Is today any different to the way in which glamour was perceived in 1950s Hollywood? I think not. It is, rather, that glamour has been redefined and sculpted, made-up and coiffed into an image in line with 21st Century interests.

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


In his shoes Fashion

What men really think

Our go-to guy is back with the answers women want, this week we ask him: ‘Do boys notice when girls get dressed up and does it make them more attractive?’

Cheryl Cole: She-object of thousands of men’s affections but it takes a huge amount of time and money to achieve her perfect look

The go-to guy said: Guys and girls: when it comes to certain aspects of life, we may as well be different species, and often fashion is one of these. Writing this article, I am forced to entertain certain stereotypes of the sexes; mainly to generalise that men are not particularly interested in the ‘nitty gritty’ aspects of fashion; whereas ladies notice the finer details of every outfit they adorn themselves with. Yet I am sure we can all think of a good group of friends who defy these generalisations; that guy who can’t leave the house without his designer boxers on, and that girl who wears a hoody everyday, but somehow still manages to look gorgeous. So when the time comes for you Cinderellas to get your ball gowns on, what are most men out there thinking when you finally emerge from the chrysalis that is your boudoir and reveal yourself in all your sparkling beauty? All of us (both ladies and gents) are aware of standard comments; “That looks lovely” or “You look really nice,” which may as well be saying “I’m not that bothered if I’m honest”. Possibly most dreaded by you girls is no response at all. And I have no doubt that some guys don’t comment on how you look because some guys genuinely don’t notice. (Bad luck ladies with men like this – or possibly good luck if you can’t dress to save your life.) But those guys who do notice how you look, and still give these dull answers, which, let’s face it, is probably most of us. What are they really thinking? The truth is, most of the time they are probably thinking that you do look good, really good. There may, however,

be a few things they would change about your outfit. For example the dress length, the amount of makeup you’re wearing, or how much cleavage is on show. Most guys are unlikely to say anything about what they would change as they simply don’t want to upset you, and they realise that these things mentioned aren’t actually that big a deal. So they have noticed, and they have declined to give a full advisory comment because they don’t want to hurt your feelings/ know that you that you look damn fine whether or not they comment at all. But do they think that you’re at your most attractive when your in full ‘special event’ attire? There will be those guys who love the ladies most when they are dressed up for a night out. But realistically I’d suspect that most guys prefer their girl when they are completely natural; no glitz or glamour, just plain and simple. Whatever the case, and it’s hard to feel like I’m not dishing out advice here (which is not what I’m trying to do), it’s important to feel comfortable in your own skin as well as the clothes that you love; then, if he tells you he doesn’t like it, you can tell him where to go! The female verdict: It comes as no surprise that men barely notice the difference between women doing their best to pluck, straighten, and exfoliate for a big event, but does the average male actually notice how garments should be changed to take full advantage of women’s figures? The most common response I suspect every women gets when dressed to impress is the more predictable “that looks nice.”

But for once, would we really appreciate constructive criticism, or just get offended? This begs the question why it is perfectly acceptable for an expert such as Gok Wan to be praised for his style advice, despite the fact that he blatantly doesn’t belong to the so-called “fairer sex?” Taking this one step further, if we consider some of the finest designers in the sartorial world such as Karl Lagerfeld, Matthew Williamson and Julien MacDonald, they are all more than capable of producing stunning gowns, ideal for a women’s specification. Does this mean that we should, in future, give men a greater chance to speak up and is it simply because they are unsure on how to phrase criticism? In response to the point about preferring women “just plain and simple,” why is it that the likes of Cheryl Cole are constantly topping best-dressed and sexiest female lists if men prefer a more toned-down look? Does this mean that we should put in less effort when there is a special event? Are we even expected to look more natural for important events such as our own wedding? What is reassuring is the fact that guys seem to appreciate our efforts in an unspoken way, and when dressing up for an event, they seem to think we look like Cheryl Cole every time, no matter how long we get ready for. My advice would be for women to continue making an effort that suits their own personality as confidence always prevails when you feel comfortable. Alternatively, we could always just “tell him where to go” so we can have our own moment as Cinderella.

Red Carpet Males Katy Lawson explores how men can pile on the Hollywood glamour From Johnny Depp to Hugh Jackman, men’s red carpet fashion has a reputation of being refined, classic and polished; an instant scrubbing up of even the most unkempt celebrity. Whether it’s a Prada tux or a custom-made Burberry hemp ensemble (á la Woody Harrelson at the 82nd Oscars), a well-fitted, tailored suit can turn a Wagner into a Zac Efron (well, perhaps not quite). Whilst female celebrities are in the habit of adorning themselves in ridiculous combinations of tulle, sequins and meringue-shaped fashion faux pas - just so that they can declare that they are “wearing so and so” - red carpet males go the extra mile with more minor details such as lapel size, tie width and accesories. They too are wearing Armani, Prada, Calvin Klein, or the men’s favourite, Stijn Helsen, but the question as to ‘who’s wearing who’ seems to be less critical. Nobody reminisces about Hugh Grant’s suit at the premier for Four Weddings and a Funeral, but Liz Hurley will always be remembered for ‘that dress’, (the Versace safetypin number that left little to the imagination). Perhaps men’s red carpet fashion might not be as memorable as women’s, but it is consistently classic and suavelooking; the most shocking appearance recently being Robert Downey Junior’s sneakers and sky-blue tie at the Academy Awards. Shocking. But it’s not only the suit, however, that makes a pretty average man turn into a red carpet Adonis; it’s the carefully planned degree of hair ruffling, facial hair and fake man-tan. It might be easy to think that Robert Pattinson just wakes up looking like that good, but following Colin Farrell and Jonny Depp’s footsteps, his “shabby chic” look is manufactured to perfection. Tousled hair, open shirt, grizzly chin: all are present to try and tone down the sophistication of a tailored suit. Unfortunately for him, however, Pattinson was pipped to the prestigious Teen Choice award of ‘Male Red Carpet Fashion Icon’ by his Twilight co-star Taylor Lautner. Perhaps jeans and lace-up boots are a step too far for adoring tweens. Maybe they prefer the opposite end of the red carpet scale: the Daniel Craigs and Zac Efrons; the men who don’t try to tone down their appearance in order to look ‘rugged’. Smooth and shiny representatives of the red carpet, they just aren’t afraid to ooze ‘typical’ red carpet glamour, but are complete with designer suit, slick hairstyle, perfect tan and all-essential piece of female arm candy. These are the men mothers and daughters alike drool over; the sophisticated, manly celebrity. But who’s better, the Daniel Craigs or


the Robert Pattinsons? The flawless glamour or the shaggy chic? A bow tie or a pair of Ray Bans? Well, to me they both look pretty good. As with women, it’s not what is worn (though an ounce of Tom Ford or so doesn’t go amiss!) but how the celebrity wears it.

Last week we asked you...

“Who is your most significant style influence?” In last week’s issue, we featured an article about some of the greatest style icons. We asked you whether you agreed with our writers’ views and our poll showed that 67 per cent of you thought Edie Sedgwick was your biggest influence whilst Kate Moss wasn’t considered that important. Maybe we will see a revival of smoky eye make-up and oversized shirts in exchange for our leather jackets and breton-striped tops? If you want your opinion heard, check out our online poll this week at and it will be featured in next week’s edition.



THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010



what’s happening on your campus? monday

Do you want your event advertised in The Courier?

University Challenge Trials

The Link Room, Students Union at Park Terrace Contact for

This Listings spread is for you. more information and see box below for A place for students and societies to advertise any events that they are organising. From team trials, recruitment drives, fundraising and charity nights, to Information Evening live music and art shows - we Herschel Building Lecture Room 2, want you to know what is going 19:00 - 20:00 on around your university campus - and more importantly we Mount Everest has always represented ultimate challenge. Now it’s Newcaswant you to be able to let others the tle University’s students who have the know about it too! opportunity to go where few have gone To get details of your event before... Everest Base Camp. The trek to camp is both a physical challenge published in these pages, all base and a mental awakening. You will get you have to do is email the date, the chance to trek in the highest region time and location of your event in the world whilst meeting and learning the Nepalese and Sherpa cultures with a short description of what from and customs. This experience over 17 it is and who it is for to: courier. days is one you are not going to forget, or stop into anytime soon. Come along for more and to register for your place The Courier office at Park Ter- information on the ultimate adventure or visit www. race. for

Newcastle’s Everest Trek


Represent Newcastle University Trials: Mon 15 and Thurs 18, The Link Room, Students Union at Park Terrace & Tues 23, Ridley Building 2, Ground floor seminar room 1.52 Want to represent Newcastle University on University Challenge? Think you could take on Jeremy Paxman? The search is now underway for our team; could you fill one of the famous four seats? We are looking to improve on our first round exit this year against Sheffield and need candidates from across the University to come along

Your City:

1. Film

and try their hand at our general knowledge quiz. Successful candidates will get through to further rounds of questioning. Candidates from all degree levels and subject areas can come along if you are a registered student. For more information, email Tom at president.

The Tyneside pushes your movie knowledge to the brink with more exciting evenings of the Great Tyneside Cinema Quiz than ever before! Whether you think you know about film, want to pitch your brains against the best, or just fancy a fun and relaxed night out this is the chance to get your hands on the coveted Tyneside Trophy. Head to the glorious Tyneside Bar for a night of film trivia and fun.

WHQ, 19:30, £5 Adv/ £6 OTD

The Management Society and Marketing Society have joined forces for a bigger and better Bar Crawl. There will be drinks deals at Madisons, Sam Jacks and Sinners and reduced entry to The Den. Bring friends and flatmates and come dressed up in whatever you want to be when you grow up. Check out the Facebook group for more details.

Give It A Go! Crazy Golf

14:00, £3, Booking Essential

2. Theatre Theatre Royal, Sunday November 1620, 19:30, Mats Nov 18 14:00, Nov 20 14:30, £8.50-£29.50

After a sell-out success in London, Alan Bennett’s latest play comes to Newcastle, with Desmond Barrit (The History Boys) leading the cast. It looks at the unsettling desires of two difficult men, and at the ethics of biography. It reflects on growing old, on creativity and inspiration, and on persisting when all passion’s spent: ultimately, on the habit of art.

Malaria affects 250 million people each year. Join this Medsin event to find out more about malaria and enjoy some amazing entertainment. All proceeds from this event will go towards buying mosquito nets to help prevent the spread of malaria.

Come with us to Tynemouth for a fun game of Crazy Golf. The price includes transport to and from Tynemouth, as well as a game of crazy golf! A great afternoon’s fun. Email giag.union@ncl. to sign up!

thursday Roddy Doyle: Fighting words: the write to right

Curtis Auditorium, Herschel Building, 17:30 -18:30, FREE Roddy Doyle will talk about Fighting Words, a writing centre for children and young people that he co-founded in Dublin, in 2009. He will explain why he became involved, and what inspired him. Fighting Words is free for everyone who comes through the door. Roddy will explain how, and for whom, the centre operates. He will also talk about Fighting Words’ approach to creative writing, the invitation to children to write: Write First, Worry Later. All tickets have been allocated for this lecture, but to be added to the waiting list e-mail or contact 0191 222 6136.

The Link Room, Students Union at Park Terrace Contact for more information and see box to the left for details.

Insights Public Lecture BAF Three Legged Social... With a Twist. When I grow up I want to be... Starts at Billabong, 20:00, Ends at Perdu

After the success of the BAF ball this weeks social is saying goodbye to the fourth years before they go off on placement. The twist? You will be tying your hands together rather then your legs. Probably safer. Find a partner, tie up, and join the fun.

Undergraduate Research Expeditions and Scholarships 2010

Curtis Auditorium, Herschel Building, 17:30 -19:15, FREE Head down to this free and open lecture to see five brief presentations from a selection students who have all held competitive awards for a diverse range of projects or expeditions. The projects were undertaken during the summer months and reflect the broad range of academic interests across the University. From pre-Viking sculpture to Lego robot football, this is a great chance to hear some of the wonderful work students around the university are producing.

Careers Service

How to find a job in the North East

Bamburgh Room, King’s Road Centre, 13:00-14:00 Almost half of Newcastle 2009 graduates found work in the North East, so if you would like to remain in the region, this workshop will help you to find out how they did it! Check out the website, http://www. for more information.

3. Film

4. Art

4. Lecture

Hiroshima (Uruguay) (2009)

Northern Footprints

Music Futures > Innovation and Digital Music

Star and Shadow, November 18, 19:30, £4 This film has been described as revolutionary. It is something improvised, inspired, confusing and refreshing. Between an art film, a documentary, and a surreal essay, Rotterdam Film Festival saw it as a “hyper-realistic and surrealist slacker film”. It has nothing to do with Hiroshima, through either place or the atomic bomb, but it is definitely worth popping down to see this little gem.

Northern Print, Stepney Bank, Preview November 17, runs to December 22, FREE Northern Print is set to unveil its Northern Footprints ‘10 exhibition to the public on Thursday 18 November 2010, showcasing a collection of prints by studio artists exploring beautiful, quirky and intriguing themes, all brought to life on one square foot of paper. Northern Footprints previews on Wednesday 17 November and will be opened by Jim Tough, Area Executive Director, North for Arts Council England.

Northern Stage, November 1518, 18:00-20:00, FREE

Book your place on this series of free seminars focused around new technologies and online platforms and how they relate to the music industry. From bloggers reporting on and influencing the musical landscape to online streaming and music sharing services, these lectures give us an insight into new direction music is taking. Check out the website, musicfutures/ for more information.


Insights Public Lecture Home from Home

University Challenge Trials

Our top events happening in Newcastle this week

The Great Tyneside Film The Habit of Art by Alan Bennit Quiz Tyneside Cinema, November 17, Doors 19:00, starts 20:00, £5 Per team (Max 5 per team)

Medsin Present... Malaria Matters

When I grow up I want to be...

more information.

University Challenge


Mansoc & Marksoc Bar Crawl

Starts at Madisons, 20:00, Ends at The Den

Listings Editor : Ciara Littler -

KAOS (Kids Action OverSeas) Society Information Meeting

Medical School Common Room, 17.00 If you’re interested in volunteer work abroad, an opportunity to travel and experience another culture then this opportunity is for you! With KAOS you will be helping out in an orphanage and other local projects (including organising a medical dispensary) in Tanzania for four weeks over the summer vacation. As well as the volunteer work you could also: climb Mt. Kilimanjaro, go on a safari, watch a traditional tribal Maasai dance and holiday in the paradise island of Zanzibar. Sound good? Come along to the meeting for more information.

Domesticity in Art - An exhibition from fine art students

Empty Shop Durham, The Gates Shopping Centre, 85 North Road, Durham, DH1 4SP, November 19-21 Check out what the Art students at Newcastle are getting up to. This great little exhibition occupies a shop in Durham but is well worth the trip down. Opening Night is on the 19 November from 6pm and there will be an aftershow Party at FishTank Durham from 10pm on the same night with an AV performance and DJ set by Iridal.

Chamber Ensemble

Kings Hall, Armstrong Building, Saturday November 20, 19:30, £5/3 Join Newcastle’s Sinfonietta society for an evening of great music performed by students from the University. The programme consists of Mendelssohn Symphony No.3 “Scottish” - conductor Mark Edwards, Mozart Symphony No. 25 - conductor Miles Cragg and Mozart Oboe Concerto - soloist Fiona Preston. A great chance to hear some classical music. E-mail info@ for more information.

The Cluny 2, Byker, November 16-18, Doors 19:00 - Performance 19:30, Tickets on sale outside the Library from Mon 12 & on the door, £6. Following the spectacular performance of A Clockwork Orange, NUTS returns to the Cluny 2 for the second show of the Autumn season, with Jeffrey Hatcher’s adaptation of Robert Louis Stevenson’s novella, Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. The classic tale follows the medical workings and controversial experiments of Dr Henry Jekyll, who after years of failed experimentation, finally creates a concoction that al-

lows him to explore the bestial side of human nature through his alter ego, Edward Hyde. As the play develops, and Henry loses control over both himself and Hyde, he threatens the lives of all he holds dear. Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde is a passionate, ferocious and enthralling interpretation of Stevenson’s timeless masterpiece. Albeit not for the faint hearted, Dr Jekyll and Hyde is a production not to be missed.

BioSci Trip to Edinburgh Christmas Market

Tickets on sale 12:00-13:00 Mon-Fri this week and next, from common room Med School Don’t miss this chance to join BioSci’s trip to the Edinburgh Christmas market. The trip will be on Saturday 4th December, leaving from the union at 8:30 and due to return by 21.30. Get in a festive mood, see the city and enjoy some tasty food and drink. Coach tickets are only £10 each and you must be a member of BioSci to come.

A Night of Poetry @... Submissions request

Fancy yourself as a poet? Here’s your chance to let others hear what you can do. A Night of Poetry @... is holding its first event at the Tyneside Cinema and needs submissions from budding student poets who would like to perform. It is an informal event on November 30 and anyone can get involved, you do not have to have studied or be studying poetry (or English) to perform or come along and listen. All you need is a passion for poetry and enough pennies for a pint! Please send 4/5 poems to: anightofpoetry@ by 19 November, 5pm, or check out the Facebook page for more info: Type ‘A Night of Poetry@’ into the search bar.

weekend Newcastle Sinfonietta

NUTS present:Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

Engineers Without Boarders Newcastle

Get Sheltered! Hands on Engineering Experience Saturday November 20, 10:00-18:00

Hands on Engineering experience with workshops that include a combination of making mud bricks, simple roof trusses and straw walls along with workshops on simple surveying techniques. The event will also feature talks from Doug Harper (Mud bricks), Jeffri Ramli (Structural stability) and other experts in the field. There are limited spaces, to book yours and for more information contact ewb.

Measure for Measure

St. Lukes Church Hall, Clremont Street, November 18-20, Doors 19:00 Performance 19:30, Tickets on sale outside the Library 12-4pm Mon-Wed, £6. Vincentio, the Duke of Vienna, begins to despair at the loss of the city's strict laws against sex before marriage. Leaving his people in the seeminglycapable hands of Lord Angelo, the Duke disguises himself as a humble friar and becomes inextricably involved the unfolding events. It is only through the actions of a condemned brother, a chaste sister and a treacherous advisor that the Duke is able to discover Angelo's true nature and change the fates of the people he has left behind. Measure for Measure is a twisted entanglement of lust, deceit and comedy that questions authority and laughs at crime. Check out the Facebook group ‘Shakespeare’s Measure for Measure’ for more details.


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

Life & Style

As the new trailer hits our screens, we examine the rise and rise of Harry Potter > Page 27



Saving the arts Rosie Tallant on campaigning against the cuts October’s Government Spending Review brought with it Arts Council cuts that have been described by artists as “deep” and “hasty”, but certainly not surprising. After the budget was slashed by almost 30 per cent last month, many have confessed their view of the Arts as an expected fatality of the spending review. An easy target they may be, but there is no doubt that the arts have become an economic powerhouse over recent years. Billy Elliot playwright Lee Hall commented that the government’s plans are “crazy and short-sighted”, and pointed out that “the VAT on the West End alone brings in more than the subsidy”. With this is mind, it is clear why he believes the cuts to be both “a cultural disaster and economic insanity”. This is also the view held by Dr. James Annesley, lecturer in English Literature at Newcastle University, who predicts that the review “will not only impoverish our culture, it will weaken our economy too.” With cuts of around £350m expected in the next four years, many artists’ resentment is visible in both their work and the petitions they are supporting so strongly. Contemporary artist Mark Wallinger’s latest work has been produced as a protest against the plans of the coalition government. By slashing Joseph Turner's 1839 painting, The Fighting Temeraire to reveal the words “25% cut”, Wallinger has created a visual depiction of the effects of the arts cuts. Underneath the painting, the words “If 25%

were slashed from arts funding the loss would be immeasurable” have been added to highlight Wallinger’s point. As he explains: “I describe the cuts as a reckless adventure. In fact “temeraire” means reckless in French and by removing the obsolete ship from the scene I am rendering the painting reckless.” Although his puns definitely lighten the tone of Wallinger’s argument, his political background has been strongly established through his involvement with one of Labour’s pre-election poster campaigns. Other artists have also become seriously involved with campaigning against the cuts, including David Hockney, Damien Hirst and Tracey Emin, who have all pledged their support to leading campaign ‘I Value the Arts’. Launched in September, the website encourages individuals to support arts schemes in their local communities and keeps members up to date with plans that could affect arts provision both nationally and in their local neighbourhoods. The petition currently has 14,704 signatures and is led by the National Campaign for the Arts (NCA), with support flooding in from industry bodies such as the Society of London Theatre, the Visual Arts and Galleries Association and the Association of British Orchestras. No public money is used to fuel the campaign, and so far it is has relied entirely on the time and donations of supporting individuals and organisations. Other campaigns are forming

Cornelia Parker is one of the artists who is supporting Save The Arts, a national campaign protesting against the recent budget cuts

across the country, with local council rallies planned this month. NorthEast arts funding will be slashed by more than £1 million, and there are fears that this will cause irreparable damage to the miraculous developments seen across the region in recent years. The BALTIC will lose more than £150,00 and Northern Stage will lose £9400, making it likely that some of Newcastle’s most illustrious cul-

tural hubs will find their creativity unequivocally compromised. Tina Gharavi, lecturer in English Literature and a Regional Council Member for the Arts Council, claims that: “Closing down arts organisations is akin to closing down mines”, yet she remains positive that “The region will continue, despite the cuts, to produce some of the most innovative and meaningful art outputs in the long shot.”

“Something has been started in the region and that cannot just be put back in the bottle.” It can only be hoped that this prediction is accurate, but in the mean time it is likely that many arts patrons will agree with Annesley, who suggests that: “The ability to manage a few simple sums would be one of the things you'd look for in a Chancellor of the Exchequer. Obviously, though, this is not the case”.


Political memoirs: spinning stories and money In the age of celebrity culture, political memoirs have become increasingly common on bookshop bestsellers lists, showing that whilst the popularity of politician’s rise and fall, the genre within which they write is steadfastly popular. Publishing and politicians clearly go hand-in-hand; just ask the Mayor of London Boris Johnson, who infamously claimed his bit-on-the-side columnist salary of £250,000 was “chicken feed”. Indeed, the big-namers might find that corporate-sponsored speeches don’t provide quite as much money as having your name in print and then of course there’s the book signings where they get to meet the electorate to show they’re in touch with the people. Peter Mandelson’s hatchet-job memoirs The Third Man earned him

a £150,000 advance, and a reported £350,000 for serialization rights. Though politics is often referred to as “showbusiness for ugly people”, having a famous face on a book cover is surprisingly beneficial - Cherie Blair’s Speaking For Myself generated £1 million in sales. Her husband’s recently published memoirs A Journey became Waterstones’ fastest-selling autobiography, shifting 92,000 copies after just four days on sale. It was so popular that Mrs Blair couldn’t resist flogging copies of the book at knockdown-prices from her personal eBay account. Setting aside the black market practices of his wife, Blair made a point of donating royalties from the book (which explores his highly controversial decision to go to war with Iraq) to a charity for injured

soldiers. In a gesture which smacks undeniably of guilt, Blair shows how political memoirs are written as a form of catharsis and in some cases, denial. They are used to give the author’s “side of the story” and strive to atone for wrongs committed whilst in power or, at very least, in the public eye. Often disgraced and scandal-ridden MPs choose to put a personal spin on a political story in order to connect the reader to the author’s point of view, allowing for sympathy and a bond of understanding to arise. Many memoirs are written by those close to key political figures, creating adulatory as well as disparaging semi-biographical accounts. In fact, eighteen of Margaret Thatcher’s staff went on to write accounts of their time under her well-docu-

mented leadership. Most recently, Tony Blair’s chiefof-staff Jonathan Powell published his memoirs, The New Machiavelli, an intimate account of his relationship with his boss. As previously mentioned, Peter Mandelson’s memoir focused on the complex relationships between himself, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown during the New Labour years. Dubbing them the “soap opera years”, Mandelson’s account is typical of political memoirs in that they capture the drama of high-level politics, appealing to readers who otherwise think of the arena as dry, boring and irrelevant. However, in some instances the candid and overly-intimate nature of memoirs can be somewhat offputting: Tony Blair’s cringe-worthy reference to sex with Cherie earned

him a nomination for the Literary Review’s Bad Sex Award. He received the nod for penning the lines: “I needed that love Cherie gave me, selfishly. I devoured it to give me strength. I was an animal following my instinct". With political memoirs, you can’t always see the wood for the sleaze. In essence, they are often self-justifying pieces or attempts to erase the bad publicity that arose from their time in government; the level of agenda-pushing in the prose is often barely veiled. In the same way that Webcameron broadcasts a mediated cross-section of David Cameron’s personal life, political memoirs are another form of media that has been harnessed to be used as personal propaganda. Stephanie Ferrao

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


Arts Culture

Arts Editor: Stephanie Ferrao -



Forget the pantos Juliet Armstrong on this year’s alternative show Northern Stage concludes its fortieth birthday with the stage adaptation of the favourite family tale The Wind in the Willows. The story has been adapted by leading playwright Alan Bennett, and is set to run throughout the Christmas period, promising a night of magical entertainment for all ages. The Wind in the Willows is a classic work of literature by Kenneth Grahame, with the plot following animals as they build friendships, explore the natural world and participate in one great adventure. The story is enchanting as the audience falls in love with the animals, igniting a childhood excitement in every theatre lover. The unravelling escapades of Mr Toad, Mole, Ratty and Mr Badger provide the entertainment in the play, as the audience witnesses the trials and tribulations in the animals’ lives, with the audience left hoping for the important ‘happy ever after’ ending. Starring in the production is local comedic actor Mark Benton, who rose to popularity with performances in The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, playing alongside Hollywood legendary actors such as Jude Law and Colin Firth. Middlesbrough-born Benton undertakes the role of Mr Toad and guarantees to bring enthusiasm and

laughs galore for the audience. The Northern Stage is an innovative theatre that takes drama to new levels. The artistic team behind the theatre resist the temptation to transform the Christmas seasonal show into another commercial project lacking any creative or artistic integrity. It is exciting and adventurous to take risks and it is exhilarating to see a different choice of Christmas theatre on offer this year. Following the success of last year’s Peter Pan, it seems inevitable that The Wind in the Willows will be the popular choice of play to see this winter season, for nobody can fail but to love this re-working of such a traditional tale. The show proves that big budgets and gimmicky scenic devices are not essential, despite the conditions that are associated with Christmas seasonal productions. This genre of theatre has become increasingly tedious thanks to the tiresome interplay of “he’s behind you” on a constant loop. Hats off to Northern Stage for daring to be different. It is a risk that has ultimately paid off, as some performances are already sold out, highlighting the increasing demand for more creative and stimulating seasonal shows. Bennett’s adaptation builds upon his already sterling reputation as a

Mark Benton plays Mr Toad in Alan Bennett’s adaptation of The Wind in the Willows, performed at the Northern Stage this winter.

seminal stage-writer in today’s cultural industry. This adaptation is yet another piece to add to his everextending repertoire of work. Ben-


nett’s influence offers enough reason alone to head to Northern Stage this winter.

The Wind in the Willows is performed at the Northern Stage from November 29 to January 8 2011. For tickets visit:


Meet the movers and shakers of visual art Watercolours reconsidered This winter the Stephenson Works play host to Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, a collection of moving-image works by international artists. As with the recent Culture Shock festival, this exhibition aims to represent the art of visual storytelling and the way that the medium can explore individual and collective histories. By interlinking fiction and reality, the artists have created complex narratives that resonate on a personal and universal level. The exhibition is organised by the non-profit arts organisation CIRCA Contemporary Art Projects, who put on contemporary arts events whilst working closely with established and emerging artists in the North East. Using an engaging mix of screenings, exhibitions, talks, commissions and workshops, CIRCA aim to raise awareness for contemporary art in the North East, and particularly the ways in which it is studied and taught. Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere has been brought together as part of NewcastleGateshead’s winter season of world-class cultural events. First to showcase work is artist Stuart Wright, who casts himself in

his visual narrative Maze as an Elizabethan courier attempting to find his lover, played by film-star Kiera Knightley. The installation comprises of two screens, designed so that the viewer must choose whose story they want to follow: that of the pursuer or the pursued. Following Wright, Henry Coombes will exhibit The Bedfords - a narrative that looks at the story of eccentric nineteenth-century painter Edward Landseer as he is commissioned to paint a family portrait of the Bedford family at their home in the Scottish Highlands. The exhibition presents Landseer’s troubled relationship with the natural environs as we see his genteel nature contrasted with the rugged Scottish landscapes, pushing the artist to the edge of his mental capacity. Lastly, Lu Chunsheng showcases The First Man Who Bought a Juicer Bought It Not for Drinking Juice - a blend of documentary and fantasy, using the senseless acts of human and mechanical characters to play out the perceived consequences of globalisation. Inspired by H.G. Wells’ War of the Worlds, Chunsheng’s sinister

imagery illustrates the influence of technology and mass media on fear in today’s society. Sam Watson, director of CIRCA Contemporary Art Projects, comments: “We believe that Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere offers our most dynamic and critically relevant project to date. We aim to create a programme that will go beyond the dates that the works are open to the public. We are working in collaboration with various professionals in the field of film and moving image, to produce a short 'fringeprogramme' of works and events as well as a limited edition publication to accompany the programme.” Each individual showing in Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere will be open to the public after nightfall for six uninterrupted evenings between 6-8pm. So make this your opportunity to see this incredible site in a different way than ever before. Everybody Knows This Is Nowhere, November 20th -December 9th 6-8pm, Stephenson Works, South Street, Newcastle. Natalie Crick

The British watercolour tradition might suggest a focus on twee, pastoral, idealistic scenes of flowing meadows and stunning waterfalls. However, Vision and Imagination, the current major exhibition at the Laing Gallery, aims to challenge such preconceptions taking one on a journey through the last two centuries of the most defining watercolour art. As part of The Great British Art Debate, the gallery has supplemented its own collection with works from Tate Britain and Norfolk and Sheffield museums and as such one can experience landscape in a multitude of ways: dreamlike or surreal, eerie or fantastical, in ways beyond the expected. One of the most striking works in the exhibition, mainly down to its sprawling scale, is a piece by Edward Burra that depicts masked, horned figures in twisted, disturbing postures. The viewer is directly stared at by these haunting figures and thus drawn into the nightmarish dreamscape that they inhabit, further enhanced by the curve and movement of the composition. It is surprising that a watercolour piece has the

ability to be so powerful and vivid in its use of colour. There is nothing insipid about this painting. By contrast, the collection of works by William Blake communicate the inner workings of his deep imagination, with representations of the classical and mythical. They range from those with a sketchy unfinished quality to others that would not look misplaced in an anthology of his poetry. Twentieth century watercolour is represented by the works of Graham Sutherland and John Piper. Both use a combination of other media such as wax and ink to enhance the watercolour. This is best exemplified in Sutherland’s Two Miners Drilling, where a vibrant crimson is placed above the figures in the ominous darkness below thus creating the claustrophobic, hellish world of the pits. Celebrated artists of the genre demonstrate how the humble watercolour can be transformed by unique vision, elevating it to a place way beyond this world. Vision and Imagination is on at the Laing Gallery until December 5 Catherine Langley


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

Culture Film

film film of the week

Another Year Director: Mike Leigh Cast: Lesley Manville, Jim Broadbent, Ruth Sheen Runtime: 129 mins

Another Year focuses on the lives of blissfully married couple geologist Tom (Broadbent) and psychiatrist Gerri (Sheen) and their family and friends during one weekend in each of the four seasons. Though the lives of the two are the focal point of the story, it’s the bumbling Mary (Manville) who takes centre stage as the secretary from Gerri’s clinic still looking for love in her 40s. From the constant nervous ticks to the non-stop self-pitying, Mary comes across as too much of an annoying character to hold so much screen time, yet here lies the brilliance of Mike Leigh’s direction. Like the majority of his films, Another Year has no clear story arc; instead the plot arises in disparate events in the day-to-day lives of the characters. By not giving any clear goals or desires for his players, Leigh invites us to get to know them, and in this film just as much

as any of his others, it works. From a character that even appears to annoy Tom and Gerri, Mary gradually becomes likeable over the course of the film. It’s unsurprising really that there’s already Oscar talk surrounding Manville’s performance, as the initial interpretation of Mary appearing over-acted eventually gives way to the feeling that this is a very real character, shadowed by desperation. The realism that exists in Mike Leigh’s films is here, as ever, the source of the film’s greatness, just as much as it is creator of its pitfalls. Some scenes, as genuine as they are, seem to go on for too long; the film itself could end ten minutes earlier. Similarly, the annoyance that initially comes from Manville’s Mary could lose some of the audience early. These are minor faults, however, in a film that is otherwise a masterpiece of cinema. Realism takes its most striking form through the cinematography of Dick Pope, a long time Leigh collaborator, who seamlessly switches through the seasons, creating stunning images through everyday lighting. Cold winter mornings feel like cold winter mornings and warm summer evenings feel like warm

news S&S launch Latin season For those seeking an original, artistically beautiful cinematic experience this November, head down to the Star and Shadow, which will be offering viewers a taste of the intriguing and extraordinary cinema of Latin America from the past decade. From this Sunday, Newcastle’s quirkiest cinema will be screening five films from Uruguay, Argentina and Mexico, each providing a unique depiction of life in Latin America, shunning the cinematic stereotypes that the continent suffers from. This selection focuses on the beauty beneath the ordinary, using innovative cinematography to offer a fresh perspective on everyday life. From Argentina, The Headless Woman (2008) is the third feature film from critically acclaimed director Lucrecia Martel. It explores the social segregation between the indigenous community and the Bourgeoisie through the portrayal of deranged protagonist Vero and her perception of the world around her. Confounding and thought provoking, the film has been declared a “masterpiece” and a future classic. Within the past decade some outstanding directors have arisen from Uruguay, notably Pablo Stoll whose astonishing films Hiroshima (2009) and Whisky (2003) are to be screened this season. The former is a groundbreaking ‘silent musical’; a portrait of a peculiar, possibly autistic singer, whose surreal approach to life is illustrated through intertitles and an entrancing soundtrack

of Uruguayan post-punk and techno music. Hailed as ‘inspiring’ and ‘mind-blowing,’ the film has never before been distributed in the UK, and the opportunity to experience it should not be passed up. It is also an extraordinary observation of human interaction. Using dark, subtle comedy to depict the loneliness and frustration felt by its protagonists, the film has won several awards for its curious humour and charm. The Dog Pound (2006) is the third of these tremendous Uruguayan films to be shown this month. The debut from director Manuel Nieto Zas, this tragicomedy follows an idle, lethargic, failed university student who has been designated the task of building a house for himself, and must at the same time reconstruct his own life in order to return to university. Mexico’s contribution consists of the visually striking Alamar (2009), a beautifully simple ‘visual poem’ set in the breath-taking coral reefs of Banco Chinchorro. It conveys the unique bond between a fisherman father and his son against the stunning backdrop of an enchanting environment. This is a fantastic opportunity to experience the magical cinema of a continent with such refreshing attitudes to film-making. These beautiful, unusual films provide a welcome alternative to the repetitive drivel of mainstream movies and are sure to open your minds. Emma Douty

Shedloads of character: Mike Leigh’s new film follows the lives of an ageing couple, their family and friends over the course of a year.

summer evenings. The film is ultimately a pleasure to watch, where the annoying characters are undermined by the focus on Tom and Gerri, who share little screen time alone and as such become almost fleeting figures. They tend to their allotment in marital bliss, in a wonderfully worked motif in which they tend to their crops in all seasons, just as they do their family and friends, through

the good and the bad. In a rare cinematic treat, the audience is left to view the characters from the position of the married couple, equally pitying them and enjoying their presence, leading to some genuinely heart-warming comedy.

and you will be rewarded with a warm feeling as you leave the cinema. Just one warning; with it being a Leigh film, don’t expect many people below 40 in the screening. Patrick McHugh

Verdict: Though potentially slow and dull for some, Leigh’s latest is a pleasure to watch. Stick with it

preview Paul

Director: Greg Mottola Cast: Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, Seth Rogen, Sigourney Weaver, Bill Hader, Kristen Wiig ETA: April 2011 Next year our cinemas will be under an invasion of sci-fi movies. Although most come to threaten humanity, blow up the earth and generally be quite mean, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost’s comedy movie, Paul comes in peace. Frost is no stranger to sharing the screen with Pegg, but he is for the first time co-writing the film, so fans should expect something a little different to Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz. Director of Superbad, Greg Mottola, has teamed up with the comedy duo, adding to the buzz and excitement surrounding the film. So, what is Paul? He is the alien voiced by Seth Rogen, and he is as average-looking as his name suggests... that is, average-looking for an alien; think E.T.’s more artificially intelligent twin. Although the creation of the alien may look simple, a lot of effort has been put into making him look real as Rogen has been reported to have spent four months inside a motion-capture suit! Paul has the abilities of sci-fi aliens that have visited our screens in the past, not to mention the plot line has parallels with Steven Spielberg’s family favourite E.T. This is all part of Pegg and Frost’s comedy genius, cleverly weaving a plot line

that Paul the alien has been the influence for sci-fi writers of the past 60 years, so others have ripped off Paul, not the other way around. The film opens with the two unlikely heroes of the film, geeky best buddies, Graeme Willy (Pegg) and Clive Collings (Frost) who are journeying in their rented RV to every sci-fi enthusiast’s dream destination, Area 51. However, their experience becomes more real than they first anticipated. While out on the open road they are startled by an overturning car, causing them to slam on the breaks. Exploring what may have been the cause, they stum-

ble across Paul, who uses that lesser known alien greeting “Err, hi?” which sets the tone for the movie’s spoof-like quality. We discover that Paul has been hiding in a top secret government base for 60 years, and has suddenly decided it is time to hitchhike his way back home. However, getting back into space isn’t as simple as it may seem: preventing them are earthlings Jason Bateman playing special agent Lorenzo Zoil, and John Carroll Lynch playing Moses, the father of a girl (Wiig) accidentally kidnapped by the guys. Charlotte Beaumont

THE COURIER Monday Novermber 15 2010


Film Culture Film Editor: Adam Williams -


film five British comedies

Rowling in it

Burhana Islam takes a look at the financial and critical success of the Harry Potter series True to the trailer, the Harry Potter hype is beginning once again. The boy wizard and his faithful companions are back with their wands at the ready, to bring an end to what has been branded as the biggest franchise of our generation. With the penultimate instalment making its way to the big screen this week, maybe it’s time we reflected on JK Rowling’s fictional phenomenon. It all began over 10 years ago, when an unknown author put ink to paper and penned the story that would later have an empire of its own. Since then, the wizarding world has come to life. The series has spawned film adaptations, video games and masses of merchandise, all earning millions of pounds for both the creator and the studios. The saga ultimately inspired Universal’s Harry Potter theme park, where we Muggles can relive the magic stolen from the books. Unfortunately at the age of 11, we didn’t receive the owl inviting us to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. But three lucky youngsters did; Daniel Radcliffe, 21, Rupert Grint, 22, and Emma Watson, 20. The trio, better known as Harry, Ron and Hermione, headed to Platform 9 ¾ and boarded the express that made them the biggest child stars in history. Since, Radcliffe has stripped on stage, showing us he can do more than wave his magic wand. Watson became the face of Burberry, designed her own clothing range, and headed off to the other side of the Atlantic to pursue her studies. Grint bought an ice cream van, as well as starring in small screen

movies such Cherrybomb (2009) and Driving Lessons (2006). With a combined worth of almost £50million and counting, it’s safe to say these grounded stars never have to work another day again. The trio have been passed from one director to another over the years, all of whom added their own signature to the series. The films may have been criticised for becoming darker with each instalment, but since the fan base has aged the argument has faltered, particularly since each episode raked in far more than the one before. It’s almost hard to believe that Radcliffe, Grint and Watson, are just as down to earth as they were when filming Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone all those years ago; a hard feat considering the behaviour of Hollywood starlets such as Miley Cyrus and Lindsay Lohan. Now after seven movies, the cast members have recently wrapped up

“Almost every successful British performer has shared a piece of the Harry Potter magic” filming forever. With over a decade devoted to bringing the books to life, as of July 2011, when the finale is released, Harry Potter officially comes to an end. Almost every successful British performer has shared a piece of the Harry Potter magic. Not only has the sensation given birth to

5. Wallace & Gromit: The Curse of the Were-Rabbit Our favourite plasticine duo, now working as a pest-control team ‘Anti-Pesto’ set out to solve the mystery of the disappearing veg in their village, and along the way find love. Ambitious at 85 minutes, requiring hundreds of hours of model-making, it still lives up to the high standard of their hilarious first outings – the only Oscar winner on our list.

Pottering on: JK Rowling’s series of novels has spawned 8 successful film adaptations

stars, but it has incorporated elites like Helena Bonham Carter, Gary Oldman, Alan Rickman, and Ralph Fiennes, just naming a few. Though Rowling left it to the directors to translate the books into motion, her one condition was that the cast remained British; a move that convinced the American film industry that we Britons are well worth investing in. Ultimately, it enabled the empire to become monumentally embedded in Britain’s history. The franchise wasn’t only a colossal figure internationally, but it influenced a whole new world of film adaptations. It’s safe to say its success inspired the likes of The Chronicles of Narnia, A Series of Unfortunate Events, and more widely The Twilight Saga (predominantly since Edward Cullen had wizarding roots before he went all sparkly on

us). Not only that, but it encouraged a fresh wave of cinema that made it acceptable for a film to have an infinite number of sequels, no matter how terrible they may be. Now we’re literally counting down the days until what has been regarded as the biggest film release of all time; Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One. Legions of Potter fans will be swarming the cinema to watch the long anticipated, final battle. With the wizarding world in the midst of a war, Harry, Ron and Hermione embark on a journey to hunt down and destroy the Horcruxes that bind Voldemort to life. With the end being near, will the ‘boy who lived’ remain so? Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part One is in cinemas from Friday


A Peeping Tom that deserves to be caught Matt Burton on why we should take a second look at Michael Powell’s lost classic Up until the 1960s the horror genre focused on adaptations of classic tales, such as Dracula and Frankenstein. In these films the villains were monsters, inhuman; they received very little sympathy from the viewer. However, the release of Peeping Tom in 1960, shortly before Alfred Hitchcock’s classic Psycho, would revitalise this stale genre. Peeping Tom follows Mark Lewis, a quiet, reserved and lonely young man who keeps his camera close by at all times, claiming he is making a documentary. By day, Lewis works as a focus puller in a film studio and as a photographer of pornography, but by night carries out his gruesome obsession - he films women

as he murders them to capture the fear on their faces and later watches them in his den. Since its release the film has become regarded as one of the greatest British horror films. At a time when fantastical monsters ruled the genre, Powell introduced a new type of villain, the human psyche, where the evil lay in the modern world. However, upon its initial release the film critics were disgusted and the severe backlash left Powell excoriated from the industry and his career never fully recovered. The film was not just controversial for its use of graphic violence (in fact very little violence actually occurs on screen) but also for its presentation of taboo subjects, in particular pornography which, although part of society, had never been represented in mainstream cinema before Peeping Tom’s release. The poor reaction to the film is said to be the reason why Hitch-

cock decided to take the previously unheard-of step of releasing Psycho without any kind of press screening. One of the most unique aspects of this film is the central theme of voyeurism. Lewis’ obsession is driven by the voyeuristic pleasure gained by watching the fear on his victim’s face as he dies. Lewis always has his camera rolling during the film and clever camerawork by Powell allows the audience to watch through the lens of his camera: we become voyeurs, watching as innocent people are brutally murdered. These techniques allowed the audience to see the world through Lewis’ eyes and are able to gain an insight into his psyche. A career-defining performance by Carl Boehm makes this character feel human with the torment of his obsession reflected in his eyes. The essential aspect that derives from the sordid theme is that the charac-

ter is redeemable; Lewis recognises his sickness and obsession but feels compelled to end his documentary of fear. It is his crushing loneliness and the after-effect of his father’s experiments of fear, conducted on him during his childhood, that have left Lewis in this psychologically damaged state, which makes it difficult for the viewer to feel anything but sympathy for him even as the film comes to its shocking but inevitable finale. Peeping Tom can be best described as a misunderstood masterpiece that has now become one of the greatest and most influential British horror films. It creates a climate of terror built from laying bare the intimate aspects of human relationships, showing us the side of life we don’t wish to see. A restored version of Peeping Tom is released on Blu-ray later this month

4. Tamara Drewe Based on Posy Simmond’s graphic novel, a (cosmetically) transformed Drewe returns to her Dorset village, also home to a celebrated middleaged writer, a hot young drummer and her schoolgirl crush – all of whom fall at her feet. Throw in two schoolgirls causing havoc and an abundance of comedy Dorset accents and the result, although bordering at moments on farce is feelgood, with some star comedy acting turns from British greats. 3. In the Loop Far away from the glossy, feelgood vibe associated with comedy comes this British gem - offensive, cynical and all about politics, it might not be everybody’s cup of tea. Following events in London and Washington in the run up to ‘a war’ in the Middle East, In the Loop confirms all of our worst suspicions about the people running the country, slippery, foul-mouthed characters abound and the satire crackles between expletives. 2. Four Weddings and a Funeral I know, I know, it’s from the 90s and it’s a rom-com, but it’s one that actually earns the second syllable of that title and I’m not sure there’s been one since. Hugh Grant love aside, even at his floppy-haired best, this film’s strong ensemble makes for a lot of laughs as we follow the ups and downs of their love lives. Typically British and wryly funny – well loved by women everywhere, for a reason. 1. Shaun of the Dead The first installment in the ‘blood and ice-cream trilogy’ directed by Edgar Wright and starring Simon Pegg et al. It stunned us all with the proof that a zombie movie can be intentionally funny. With in-jokes, pop culture references and a superb ‘let’s kill a zombie with a pool cue to the sound of Queen’ sequence, this film is packed full of laughs, both clever and obvious, but brilliant. Laura Bennett


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

Culture Film

film in cinemas

Jackass 3D

Director: Jeff Tremaine Cast: Johnny Knoxville, Bam Margera, Steve-O Runtime: 94 mins

For those of you who have followed Jackass since its inception on MTV over 10 years ago, you will be pleased to know that Johnny Knoxville, Wee Man, Steve-O and the rest of your favourite stuntmen have changed very little for this third instalment of the TV spin-off. The film is still simply guys torturing themselves for our amusement with gags that make you gag, only now with a cast who are pushing 40 rather than the juvenile youngsters who started the series a decade ago. Four years after Jackass Number Two, this latest instalment promised to take insanity to the next level with yet more hilarious and life threatening stunts. We see the

return of many classic stunts as well as a whole new host such as taunting bulls with hellish consequences, drinking shots of sweat and many high speed crashes on everything from jet skis to wheel-barrows. Running alongside this are recurring stunts of urinating on each other, exploding paint bombs in portable toliets and antics with superglue as the stars attempt to get one over on one another. The ongoing pranks between the stuntmen and the lackadaisical responses to them create an extremely likeable persona for each distinctive character, as well as a clearly noticeable chemistry between them that makes them all too relatable, even to Jackass virgins, despite there being no form of storyline. The film is also presented in 3D, but this is rarely effective and there is no doubt it is aimed towards long term followers of Jackass with little effort made to stray away from the low-budget and shaky production values. However, there is an overwhelming sense that the ideas are begin-

ning to run out – not only are stunts repeated from the earlier films and the TV show but throughout the film, many begin to resemble one another, making them predictable and forgettable. Many, such as blasting objects at each other using a jet engine, worked well but others, for instance Pontius wreaking havoc in a gorilla suit seemed tame, lengthy and demonstrated that perhaps the guys are not as enthusiastic for pain as they once were; particularly on the behalf of Steve-O and Knoxville, whose unwillingness shone through, most likely the result of many years of self abuse. Unsurprisingly, this film is exactly what we have come to expect from the Jackass crew with side-splitting, gut-wrenching stunts, pranks and gags, yet is delivered in such a playful and boyish manner. Those who turned their noses up at the previous films should avoid Jackass 3D at all costs. A montage of old clips and photographs through the end credits will entice a feeling of nostalgia among the diehard fans. However this sure-

We Are What We Are Director: Jorge Michel Grau Cast: Francisco Barreiro, Paulina Gaitan, Alan Chávez Runtime: 90 mins We Are What We Are (aka Somos Lo Que Hay) is a Mexican drama about family, poverty, sexuality and adulthood. Oh, and cannibalism. This is director Jorge Michel Grau’s first feature film, and he follows in the footsteps of some of the most influential Hispanic directors of our time with this twisted family tale. The film tells the story of a poor family living in a typical Mexican slum, struggling for money or to even put food on the table. When the head of the household never re-

Due Date Director: Todd Phillips Cast: Robert Downey Jr., Zach Galifianakis, Michelle Monaghan, Jamie Foxx, Juliette Lewis Runtime: 100 mins Following on from the huge success of The Hangover, a film considered by many to be one of the best comedies of the last five years, Todd Phillips brings us a much-awaited comedy follow-up with Due Date. Centred on a road trip between two unlikely companions, the film depends on the two lead performances. Robert Downey Jr. continues his Hollywood Midas touch with another impressive performance as businessman and father-to-be Peter Highman, who with considerable anger management issues gets shot on a plane and given a ‘no-fly’ ban

turns home after work, the family is thrown into further crisis. His teenage sons Alfredo and Julián (Barreiro and Chávez respectively) are quickly turfed off the market stall where their sole income comes from, and their mother (Carmen Beato) locks herself in her room, seemingly

from the US authorities. With no wallet to help him, he is forced into accepting a lift from Atlanta to L.A. by Galifianakis’ character Ethan Tremblay, a wannabe actor whose idiotic behaviour provokes Downey Jr. in the first place and gets him kicked off the plane as well. What ensues is an entertaining, if not laugh-a-minute road trip from hell, as the two allies make their way across country, stumbling into a variety of comedic set-pieces. Some of these are extremely funny, a favourite of mine involving Highman insulting a disabled war veteran and paying the consequences as a result. However, at times the jokes do fall a little flat, and the crude nature does at times begin to wear thin; in particular regarding Tremblay’s dog Sonny - a canine with a most curious way of keeping himself amused. The pair end up breaking almost every rule of the road, and are almost thrown into a Mexican prison for drug smuggling, as Tremblay accidentally mistakes a sign for Texaco with Mexico. Galifianakis

giving up on what life she had left. So far, so dramatic. The sting in the tail comes as it is revealed that this family can’t survive without performing a certain ritual that their father had always provided for - the eating of human flesh. The ensuing tale follows the two boys and their

ly means Jackass 3D is the last hurrah for our favourite stuntmen. Verdict: A must see for all existing fans with the return of the classic gags as well as a whole host of fresh hilarious and life threatening stunts that take insanity to the next level. Those seeking something in-

tellectually stimulating should try something else.

sister, Sabina (Gaitan) as they attempt to find out how to live in a broken family, whilst never getting caught trying to fix it. It’s a compelling premise, and one that draws on the work of many of Grau’s contemporaries, with a particularly close relation to the work of horror maestro Guillermo Del Toro and his own debut feature, Cronos. The two films share a fascination with sympathy for the traditional monster (or monsters in this case) and Grau draws on Del Toro’s motif of clocks and the passage of time as a central aspect to the monsters’ existence. However, Grau seems to overstep the mark as he copies almost an entire scene in a morgue from his inspiration. It’s this overstepping that seems central to the problems with the film. Where Del Toro treated the subject of sympathy with a (relatively) even hand, Grau forces us to constantly see just how human his characters are. This has the effect of making their more monstrous activi-

ties seem completely abhorrent – we don’t sympathise with them, we just don’t understand why they would do this. The mother’s conciliatory line “we’re monsters” does nothing to make us understand their turmoil, it simply heightens the confusion. It’s clear then that Grau is a director with talent; some of the more artistic shots are superb and the story never becomes dull. However, it seems the subtlety of his forebears isn’t yet his strong suit.

Phil Moody

Verdict: This is the work of a director in training – a good idea that’s marred by its execution. We Are What We Are, with its dramatic heartfelt focus, desperately wants us to believe that this family really are what they eat, but the characters just never seem human. Joe Skrebels

build a meaningful male bonding relationship between the two main characters. It is hard at times to believe that after everything they have gone through, the duo still care for each other in any way. However, these moments do not overcloud what is on the whole a fun and enjoyable affair, even though the premise of the film is perhaps not entirely original, borrowing many threads from the 1987 Steve Martin classic Planes, Trains and Automobiles.

is not too dissimilar here from the role he was highly acclaimed for in The Hangover; he is sublimely entertaining and his well-meaning yet disaster-plagued character is occasionally dazzlingly funny. Downey Jr. is able to inject humour and wit

to the straight man role, and the film throws up surprises with a series of unlikely, if not always believable cameos from Oscar winners Jamie Foxx and Juliette Lewis. Where the film falls short is in its attempts to take itself seriously, and

Verdict: Whilst failing to reach the heights of The Hangover, the combination of Downey Jr. and Galifianakis means this film is a triumph, as their interplay elevates Due Date above many other comedies of recent times. For those eagerly awaiting The Hangover 2, this will certainly satisfy, despite some flat periods. Simon Howard

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


Music Culture


Music Editors: Polly Randall & Joe Skrebels -


A tale of style over substance Tom Hopkin tells the story of the ongoing struggle with image in music today

I’m being pinned down by N-Dubz in a warehouse. Despite the place being desolate it reeks of urban kudos. Dappy removes his Nike Hi-Tops off my chest for a second and I am able to see Alex Turner wrestling winkle pickers onto my feet. The cheek. A sharp pain in my leg. And again, Carl-bloody-Barat is sewing jean material onto my bare legs shouting, “YOURS WEREN’T TIGHT ENOUGH!”. I try to scream for help, but the Country Life butter being crammed into my mouth by Jonny Rotten muffles my yelps. My cries weren’t in vain though. 5000 miles away in his eco-friendly space station, Chris Martin sheds a single tear after getting a slight twinge in his plight sensory gland. Back in the real world Simon Cowell has crawled up behind me and gently whispers “scum” in my ear for 45 minutes until the grim make-over is complete. All the while The xx play in the background like some haunting elegy, giving the impression that this is the most bizarre Amnesty International advert that has ever graced our TV screens. With the transformation nearly complete, a mechanical claw menacingly lowers a pork pie hat towards my head. I gaze up, not yet ready to accept my fate, I scream some more while melted butter gushes out of my mouth. The material touches the crown of my head… AHHHHHH! I wake up and check my vitals. Nightshirt and nightcap. Check. Absolutely zero pork pie hats in sight. My instincts tell me to forget this horrible episode, but I can’t help but ponder the scenario. Why are the brutes that I do my best to ignore insisting on invading my conscious-

ness? Pop music is by and large an allsinging all-dancing business venture, and businesses are shrewd. Songs aren’t enough anymore; a fashionable aesthetic is also key. Image and style are emphasised so much that artistic merit is somewhat sidelined, and with acts being so aggressively promoted by whatever dark forces run that nonsense, it is harder to turn your nose up at that alluring plate of easily digestible detritus. People say you can’t polish a turd, but a significant amount of popular music is simply the end product of an elaborate turd-polishing machine. More and more the traditional channels that used to filter audio orgasms in seismic rhythmic pulses for us to digest are failing us. The radio is now a deluge of presenters rather than DJs, the void left by John Peel is yet to be filled. In 1979 he played Slow Death by the Swedish, goth, punk band, Leather Nun every night for two weeks. In 2010, Black Eyed Peas’ The Time (Dirty Bit) is played at least 50 times a day. I’d rather have the other Fergie on the radio 24/7 berating me and undermining my confidence, than listen to that guff one more time. Peel was a music-seeking missile but all we’ve got are phosphorus grenades. Bloody horrible, and their use constitutes a war crime. Music and TV can be incredible (The Dead C and God on national TV in New Zealand and Australia, respectively). But largely it’s just really irritating. These videos are generally a carbon copy of what has been done a million times before but with different players. The only difference is little touches that make them more memorable to more people. For example, in some Pixie Lott video amongst the melee of that really hip party, you can spot a Flipper t-shirt. My first reaction was “That’s amazing, Flipper shirt in a pop vid-

“What do they say when you’re going to the dinners, and you’ve got diamonds as teeth?” “I mean, it’s just certain stuff that rock stars are supposed to do, you know?” This widely reported exchange between American talk show presenter Ellen Degeneres and Kanye West, about West’s somewhat…well, unorthodox decision to replace his bottom row of teeth with diamonds, is ludicrous, vain, pretentious, and utterly brilliant because of it. Now, rock-star behaviour doesn’t always lead to good art – ask anyone about the yawning disparity between 50 Cent’s hilarious Twitter and his awful music for proof. But in a world dominated by constant worries about alienating the ‘target audience’, someone like Kanye West is the perfect anecdote. He’s accused a

sitting president of racism on live television, infamously interrupted Taylor Swift at the 2009 MTV Music Video Awards, and his new album cover is a crude painting of a naked Kanye West with an armless angel. Brilliant. Whatever your opinion of his music, West’s managed to galvanise public attention quite unlike any other artist of this generation – Lady Gaga’s the only possible competitor, and unlike Kanye, her whole act is self-consciously artificial and fake. The stories that last, for better and for worse, aren’t of the great artists who sat around drinking tea: they’re of Keith Richards’ infamous benders, of Keith Moon crashing a car into a swimming pool, and Mark E. Smith fighting and sacking his band onstage. With a bit of cunning and a lot of bravado, West’s added himself onto the list.

Krieg Sam Booth Columnist

Obsessed with image: Music has always been about ‘the look’, but has it gone too far?

eo. I LOVE FLIPPER, great punk band, I should probably buy Pixie Lott’s new single, she’s obviously got her head in the right place”. So I buy twenty copies of that single, then realise its rubbish. I’m watching the video for ‘Telephone’ by Lady Gaga and I notice on her biker jacket a GISM patch. My first reaction was “That’s amazing, a GISM patch in a pop video. I LOVE GISM, great Japanese hardcore band.” I was duped again. These videos, when they can be bothered, just seem to be paying cultural lip service so that there is an illusion of the song or artist having some sort of hidden depth. But this is purely superficial, a gimmick and a calculated ploy to make something wholly abject and irritating memorable, even if it isn’t the song you are necessarily remembering. The association between image and music isn’t exclusively negative.

Music for many people helps form a personal identity and this identity manifests itself physically. It might be seen as camaraderie or conformity, but I feel there is a difference between this and a mass marketed, certified and approved image of popular music. TV, radio and magazines promote cool or obscured notions of what is desirable. Image and fashion outside of the realms of popular music are born through the association of like-minded people. This, while certainly being superficial, is nothing more than a litmus test of taste. The problem I have with the exaggerated emphasis of image in music is that it is deceptive. It detracts from the importance of music being artistic. We need to wage war on style and put some substance into music. It’s time to drag on your jack boots and scissor kick through the single racks in HMV.

debate Do we want ridiculous rockstar antics anymore? yes


Over the years, there have been some great examples of bands making the headlines, such as when the Sex Pistols came onto the scene with safety pins forced through any piece of available skin they had, or Prince’s name change when he was battling it out with the Warner Bros. record label. But these examples had a result; the Sex Pistols jump-started the punk scene in the UK and Prince managed to keep releasing records under a different name until his contract expired. Whereas I just don’t think Kanye West’s diamond teeth look will really catch on. It only takes a quick glance in NME or the web to see that performing artists, from all genres, are now no longer settling for making the headlines with a great song or album. Recently it’s been a case of


being shocking, or doing something ‘rock and roll’ to get the media’s attention. In a lot of these cases, the motive wasn’t to shift copies of their latest material or raise awareness for a worthy cause, it’s been more of an excuse to give their already overinflated egos a good massage. Are these acts in fact putting on such elaborate facades in order to distract us all from their musical abilities? Or is it they think these displays of grandeur, quirkiness and ‘being a pop star’ are all compensating for the areas they’re actually lacking in, such as the ability to release an album they actually sat down and wrote themselves, or sing on stage without the aid of autotune?

Chris Scott

Want to know about the real underground - music you’ve never heard of before and don’t think you want to know about? From raging hardcore to Syrian dabke, this is Krieg. Brainbombs! Brainbombs are here! After over ten years in the wilderness these Swedish nasties are finally earning plaudits. Formed in 1985 Hudiksvall in Sweden, Brainbombs proceeded to deconstruct punk, rock and garage and forge a new brand of twisted sounds. The formula is simple: take Stooges two-chord boogie played raw, fast and loose, and add wasted horns and the dirtiest drawl you’ve ever heard. The music has the deranged swagger of a serial killer unconcerned with being caught. Brainbombs are not for the faint hearted. Whilst the music is most definitely not for little girls, the lyrics are not suitable for anyone. Sung in a horribly drawn out moan, the band set out to upset and disturb. The band seems to revel in the base instincts and savagery of humans, getting into the minds of serial killers and misanthropes. Despite all this the band is not without humour. There is a great YouTube video where they insult people who buy their records, with an obvious tongue in cheek attitude. For me it’s the same with the lyrics: whilst the content is disgusting, there is an element of tongue in cheek. As if they are trying to offend, trying to get a response. Not only this but these thoughts exist in peoples’ heads, everyone has for a split second thought of doing some horrible act of violence and then dismissed it for what it is - crazy. Brainbombs have just decided to sing about these thoughts and people who don’t ignore them. You may well be thinking none of this sounds like a recipe for success. You would be right to a certain extent. Since their inception, partly due to their single minded approach and partly because they’re just not for everyone, Brainbombs have remained firmly underground. Interestingly the band have only ever played live a handful of times, seemingly preferring to be a studio band, although recordings are lofi, grubby and crude (just as they should be). Despite all this the band have appeared to make a remarkable return to the forefront of underground music and beyond, with a gush of reissues of all their albums and single compilations. So far four have been re- released, all available online and, four more are on their way, including a whole new album. It would appear Brainbombs are back, to destroy your brain. More than the sum of their parts, the band has streamlined music into a monolithic lump of in the red, noisy insanity. Intense, raw and just plain dirty, this band will make your skin crawl.


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

Culture Music

music listings

Monday 15th Mausi at The Cluny 2. 8pm, £4 A night of superb local talent. Headliners Mausi describe themselves as alternative Italian pop and are sure to brighten up your evening. Supported by Whitley Bay band Polarsets, energetic pop-like music will be provided. This is a perfect night to wind down after the weekend and sample some new and exciting music from the local area. Tuesday 16th A-Ha at Metro Radio Arena. 8pm, £28.50 Don your shoulder pads and prepare to relive the 80s through A-Ha. Catchy, cheesy pop as standard. Maybe a bit old for all of you to remember but if you grew up having Take On Me blasted out of the stereo by your parents this could conjure some amusing memories. And your parents will actually know who you’re talking about! Wednesday 17th Spinning Yarns at The Cumberland Arms. 6pm We know it’s not quite music but sometimes you need a rest. Where better than Newcastle’s newest knitting night - the cosiest place to spend a winter evening. Snuggle packs are even provided! Welcomes seasoned experts through to knitting virgins and is perfect for a relaxing evening and a good natter. You will be sure to feel just like your Nan after a few hours of this. Thursday 18th Pulled Apart By Horses at The Cluny, 8pm, £7 Rising noise stars PABH have been making waves in the live scene for some time and now are reaching main stream prominence on record too. With support from Gay For Johnny Depp and Young Legionaire, expect a night not for sensitive ears. Friday 19th Dr. Feelgood at The Cluny. 8pm, £14.50 Probably Britain’s hardest-working band (they’ve toured pretty much continuously since the 70s), these pub-rock legends return to the North East for a night of rowdy rhythm and blues. Saturday 20th Road to Rimini gig at Star and Shadow Cinema. 10pm A chance to spend an evening in one of Ouseburn’s more eclectic venues. Star and Shadow Cinema is an independent volunteer-led arts project always on the look out for the weird and wonderful. It hosts its quarterly Rimini event which features music, live acts and DJs. Sunday 21st Ukulele Session at The Cumberland Arms. 2pm, free entry A completely free, and presumably very entertaining way to spend a Sunday afternoon. Any aspiring musicians can bring along their ukeleles and learn some skills. Even if you don’t fancy playing, watch some pros in action accompanied by a warming drink. Spending a crisp afternoon in these surroundings is definitely time well spent. Olivia Mason


Christopher Haywood reviews the best of North East Unsigned. This week, Grandfather Birds Many moons ago The Head of Steam, Newcastle’s regular exponent of the city’s most promising emerging artists, conjured up the brilliant idea of North East Unsigned. To many, this will look, sound and feel like a glorified battle of the bands, but rest assured, there is a genuine emphasis on discovering and promoting the crème de la crème of Tyneside’s musical talent. That’s where I come in. There’s a very simple concept to this feature: every heat, I select one artist (the best, obviously) to introduce to you, the unassuming student population of Newcastle. Understood? Good. Now this is where I introduce Grandfather Birds, who despite the stupid hat I find Matt fashioning, look like four ‘sensible’, grown men in comparison to the pubescent ‘Libertines-esque’ bands offering the other entertainment for tonight’s heat. There’s a clear difference on stage too, because Grandfather Birds are a mature and intelligent indie band; some before me have even gone so far as to say ‘progressive’. After all, theirs is a set that incorporates both

the complex and the minimal. They may open with the dense Fourteen Mile – its simple trickling guitar motif is quickly consumed by an enveloping crescendo of raucous harmonies and shifting melodies, which thankfully steer the right course between muscularity and sensitivity – but this soon filters into the sparse Grandfather Bones – thrillingly loose-limbed, borrowing heavily from the blissed-out noise of the ‘90s shoegazers – whilst seeming completely effortless and smooth. Matt’s vocals and lyrics are both sharp but immensely vulnerable, and it all comes together to form a band whose sound and character is so recognisable, but at the same time so different, and although I hate to use this cliché, ‘fresh’. Talking to them, they immediately acknowledge the diversity of Newcastle’s music scene right now, but also their individuality within it; something they’re thankful for because “everybody wants to be original”. They’re also not afraid of admitting how much they’re indebted to Newcastle; both to its music scene with its “great community vibe” where “everybody likes each other” to its landscape. This is why they’re recording their next single under Newcastle’s five main bridges, in front of an audience of “oblivious drunks passing by”). And it’s with this that they may still be at the stage of finding their

sound, but they have the belief that they’re “heading in the right direction”. And I don’t think I’m going to argue with that. They got through to the next round for a reason. Who and what are they? Not just any old indie act; these guys are fully literate in song-craft and the development of stimulating sonic landscapes. Self-described as a “fawn” – a description I provoked from them – they may be meek and vulnerable now, but they have the capacity to become a wily stag.

magnificient concert. Opening act Does It Offend You, Yeah? lived up to its name and put the audience in the right mood for the actual gig with a frequent usage of the F-word and a couple of nice electro rock songs, including their crowd pleaser We are Rockstars. But the bedlam did not start until the lights went out and the band‘s DJ Joe Hahn entered the stage to kick off the night with some irresistible beats that were just a foretaste

of the concert. As the main purpose of the ‘A Thousand Suns‘ tour is to promote their new album of the same title, the setlist contained a lot of the band‘s new songs; yet the stage design was disturbing and futuristic in the usual Linkin Park manner. Nevertheless, the almost mandatory stage banter was there (Mike Shinoda thanked the audience for the fireworks in honour of the band) and the plethora of (already) cult songs from Numb

to Bleed it Out made the crowd go completely mad. Once again, Linkin Park have proved to be a brilliant live band producing songs that are both intoxicating and intelligent- and it‘s thus no exaggeration to expect more great music from them in the future!

Fresh has been an essential component of UK bass music for over a decade, and his recent chart hits Gold Dust and Hypercaine have catapulted him back to the forefront of the DnB scene. ‘Gold Dust’ in particular is a gem of a track, fusing infectious vocals over the sort of beat that launched contemporaries like Sub Focus into the limelight over the past year. Fresh hasn’t played in Newcastle for ages, and his brand of uplifiting vocal drum

and bass simply cannot be missed. Providing support on the night will be rising stars Warrior One and Jayou, two bookings that are further testament to Inertia’s policy of promoting new variations of dance music and maintaining an endearing eclecticism. Warrior One could be classed as UK Funky, but the expertly chosen dancehall and reggae samples within their beats take their style more towards the grimier side of things, whilst Manchester-based

producer Jayou has been destroying dancefloors with his brand of bass-heavy party dubstep. All in all, Inertia’s November lineup is shaping up to be a journey through the evolving sounds of UK dance music, and with tickets priced at a paltry £6, this is the sort of party needed to stave off our seasonal affective disorders.

you into a comfortable mood, with an incredible intro and a softness that you won’t be able to resist.

The xx - Crystalised A well-known, beautiful song, a harmony of vocals with gentle instrumental. Nobody can resist The xx when it comes to doing nothing.

Ricky Gervais, fact fans.

Why are they? Friends who threatened to set up a band for a while; they want to make music and just sell records. What else? How are they? Typical Geordies through and through: friendly and genuine guys, with a great sense of humour and ambition to top it all. When and where are they? You must catch them at The Cluny on either November 24 (supporting Spokes) or December 9 (alongside Polarsets).

Flying High: Grandfather Birds are sure to take off any time soon despite their age

live Linkin Park

Metro Radio Arena, November 5 2010 If people voluntarily pass up Bonfire Night to visit a gig, the performing act must be either really popular or really good. In this case, both words apply to the band guesting at the Metro Radio Arena on this year‘s Guy Fawkes Night: Linkin Park beat every firework with a

Lisa Bernhardt

highlight of the week INERTIA, presents DJ Fresh, Warrior One & Jayou Thursday November 18 Upstairs at WHQ Inertia returns to World Headquarters on the 18 November with its most exciting lineup yet, with prolific Drum and Bass producer DJ Fresh gracing the decks. As owner of the giant Breakbeat Kaos label,

Polly Ramdall

moodtape Songs to listen to at 6am Bonobo - Turtle Always a good song to start with when you are settling down to sleep or simply sitting in your room doing nothing. Fink - Pills In My Pocket A brilliant display of Fin Greenall’s beautiful voice and musical talent, the type of song you can definitely listen to on repeat. Iron and Wine - House By The Sea This is the perfect song for easing

Mice Parade - Tales of Las Negras One of my personal favourites, this song never fails to be nostalgic, unless of course you haven’t heard it, in which case, get on it. Tunng - Don’t Look Down or Back Tunng typically have a folky sound and this song is no exception, it is certainly not a background song and it holds you till the end.

Kyte - Boundaries A very gentle melody with floaty lyrics - the name Kyte is very fitting for the feelings this song provokes. Death Cab for Cutie - Soul Meets Body Ben Gibbard’s voice is certainly a favourite when I want to get away from everything; also a favourite of

Broken Bells - Float This may ring some ‘bells’ with any Shins fans, as it is the same lead singer, another well-known beauty, definitely an album to listen to. Helios - Coast Off Possibly the most tranquil song I have come across, one of the only songs ever to take me away from reality – also has a beautiful video. Bonnie Stuart

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


Culture Music

Music Editors: Polly Randall & Joe Skrebels -

the top 5

albums Cheryl Cole

Messy Little Raindrops

1. Best Coast - Crazy for You New Single

As one of Newcastle’s most famous celebrities, Cheryl Cole has certainly had her fair share of publicity; she’s very much in the spotlight at the moment. However, this is no bad thing for her, as she’ll want all the exposure she can get for this, her second solo album. As one of the judges on X Factor and a style icon, is her music up to a similar standard? Well, if you like her previous output, then Messy Little Raindrops is one to pick up. She has already proved herself as a singer, but don’t write this off as more of what you’ve come to expect too quickly as the style is certainly different from Girls Aloud. The album sees her breaking away and the sound is more of a dance and pop mix. The upbeat style is easy to listen to and catchy, brightening your mood, and its pop credentials are boosted by a number of collaborations with other artists, including Dizzie Rascal, Justin Bieber’s songwriter, August Rigo and Gym Class Heroes’ Travie McCoy. There’s an all-star cast behind the mixing desk too, with producers who have made hits for artists like Beyoncé, Sean Kingston and even-

Snoop Dogg But don’t think Cheryl’s star status has gone to her head; the emotions behind many of the lyrics are those that you can relate to and she offers an array of songs, from those you can dance to, sing to, or just listen and chill out to. The lyrics can sometimes become a little too deep and full of pity for your average pop song, and can get very cheesy at points, especially in ‘Better To Lie’, which will most likely be interpreted as a response to her recent personal problems. They’re not all emotion driven though ‘Let’s Get Down’, with guest vocals from, is a definite Friday night tune. She’s already without a doubt a star and this will only boost her stardom. But if you’re wondering if it’s all just hype, then you may find a few tracks that prove you wrong, even if they are a little emotionally overwrought. Just give it a go: first single ‘Promise This’ is a definite hit, and if you like that, you’re sure to like the rest.

Cee Lo Green

I Blame Coco

The Lady Killer

The LA indie-pop outfit have created two minutes of the most pleasant sounding music I’ve heard in a while. The simplicity of it is amazing, and the lyrics are fun too. This song is guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

2. Enter Shikari - Destabilise Music Video

Hard hitting Enter Shikari do what they do best. A mixture of hardcore rock and metal mixed with dubstep and a multitude of sound effects equals an entertaining song. The best bit by far has to be the epic chorus centred around the lyrics “we don’t belong here”, and the video isn’t bad either.

3. Auto Hype - Makes Me Go New Single

The Leicester-based pop synth band have played with Example, been on BBC Radio Nottingham and Introducing, and are about to go on a German tour. Are they worth the hype? Definitely.

Clare Barclay

The Constant

Sharon Von Etten Epic

Les Shelleys Les Shelleys

4. Paul Smith - Our Lady of Lourdes New Single

The lead singer of Maximo Park has just recently released his new album Margins and has accompanied it with a lovely and wonderfully crafted single. The melody of the guitar is excellent as it sets a sombre mood next to Paul Smith’s gentle vocals.

Picture this scenario: a girl you like turns you down and goes with someone else instead. How do you react? Or, more to the point, how would Cee Lo Green react? With a massive hit single subtly titled ‘F**k You’, that’s how. Witty, over the top and toe-tappingly soulful, it’s a deservedly lauded pop song, and certainly one of the highlights on Green’s latest album The Lady Killer. The album starts promisingly with a classy “Well hello there…” over tinkled ivories, setting the mood for an album of soul-pop. However, the quality dips early on with the generic dance synths of ‘Bright Lights Bigger City’, whilst ‘Bodies’ offers up an interesting military drumbeat, but then goes nowhere with it. From ‘Love Gun’ onwards, the album’s soul returns in more ways than one. The album’s latter half is certainly listenable, slick and catchy, with a few gems like ‘Old Fashioned’ hidden in there for good measure. If anything, after the controversybaiting ‘F**k You’, the album plays it a bit too safe. It’s a well crafted pop record, and one that should do well commercially, but it could have done with a few more risks.

After lending her vocals to drum and bass outfit Sub Focus for the song ‘Splash’ back in May, at the age of 19, I Blame Coco (Coco Sumner, the daughter of musician Sting) has made a debut album, which she has been working on since she was 15. While The Constant is a good effort, it hasn’t really pushed any boundaries. There are some positive things to say about the album, the main one being she has a great voice. This is very unique and quirky, which luckily gives the album an edge, especially on songs such as electroballad ‘It’s About To Get Worse’, inspired by current global affairs and ‘The Constant’. My particular favourite is ‘Party Bag’, where the synths are used to great effect, creating a dreamy atmosphere and a really hard-hitting chorus. However, the underlying problem with The Constant is that it isn’t particularly memorable or even that exciting. This is because many of the effects used sound almost too clichéd and overused. This doesn’t spoil the album in a major way, because many of the songs are well crafted, it just means the album lacks a bit of originality. One to watch for the future, if not right now.

What’s that name again? - Sharon Von Etten - if you’re bored of singer-songwriters working with a studio band then well…you’re just going to have get over that. There’s captivating songs on here you’ll cherish. Overall, Epic sounds like Dolly Parton and Lou Reed had a love child, got nervous about public opinion and left her on Jonsi Birgisson’s doorstep (who was seven at the time). We kick off with the bitter honesty of ‘A Crime’ - “By the time I get the courage I am drunk and you are tired” is sung in a style that’s a bit country-western but redeems itself with a no-nonsense bitterness. ‘Peace Signs’ pays homage to the album’s dedication to Fleetwood Mac. It packs a lot of punch along with a really catchy melody. The production of ‘Dsharpg’ also answers a question that has plagued Americans for centuries: Can prairie folk be heard in outer space? The only big problem I have with this LP is that it’s tantalisingly short! At only seven tracks ‘Love More’ ends leaving you eager for a lot more. Short but sweet, Von Etten has proved she’s a name worth remembering.

Men and women have always gone well together in folk music. Bob Dylan and Joan Baez, Johnny Flynn and Laura Marling, Sonny and Cher. OK, maybe the last one is a joke, but the beautiful intertwined voices of Tom Brousseau and Angela Correa that make up Les Shelleys are no exception to the rule. The approach of this, their debut album, is very clear. Take 12 classic folk and soul songs; strip away all the unnecessary arrangements and record them in an open windowed LA apartment. The result is a set of delicate and beautiful songs with a homemade feel, down to the sound of dogs barking outside. The album opens with the gentle sound of ‘The World is Waiting for the Sunrise’ and acapella track ‘Green Door’ shows the quality of the duo’s voices as the lack of instrumental backing actually feels like a good thing. Bob Dylan fans will also be interested to hear their chorus-less doo wop arrangement of ‘The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll’. This album is not one that will set the world alight; it is a set of covers after all, but if you’re looking for songs to scare away the winter gloom, you couldn’t do much better than to give this a listen.

Ben Travis

Mark Wanzala-Ryan

Rowan McCabe

Jack Kidder

5. Grinderman – Worm Tamer New Single

When I think of Grinderman, the words ‘crazy’ and ‘mental’ come to mind, mostly because Nick Cave is involved. This song is no different and it makes for a very interesting listen, whilst the the front cover for the single is a picture of an African cheerleader with red hair - it’s just as interesting as the song. Mark Wanzala-Ryan

The Courier Online For exclusive reviews of album releases and live gigs from around the city, as well as specialist blogs and the Top 5 and Moodtape playlists head to the music section of The Courier website:

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


Culture TV & Radio

tv & radio

TV & Radio Editors: Lynsey Fawcett & Ellie Wilson -

tv highlight


I’m A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!

Coronation Street:

Mon, Thurs, Fri on ITV1 The Windasses brace themselves this week as an Army officer delivers them some bad news, and Leanne has a shocking confession to make. There is a solemn moment in the Rovers as Roy makes a sad announcement, leading residents to say their goodbyes to Jack. Molly admits her true feelings to Kevin, but can he stop her confessing all to Tyrone?

The reality show returns for its tenth series this month. Weeknights (various times), ITV 1 The new series of I’m A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! is upon us and we are all looking forward to the bushtucker trials, where we will love seeing the celebrities squirm and scream as they brave new heights, come face to face with the creepy crawlies of the jungle or see them on a plate as a bush tucker meal. This year, the series is set to be bigger and better than ever before, with more twists and turns promised. With the precedent set in previous series, we can only imagine what hideous tasks the producers have prepared for the contestants this year. Last year’s celebrities included George Hamilton, no nonsense Kim Woodburn, Gino D’Acampo and the return of Katie Price, who came back on the show hoping to win back some support over her split with Peter Andre. After three weeks of hunger, living rough and confronting lots of spiders in a bushtucker trial, Gino D’Acampo was crowned King of the jungle. But whose turn will it be this year? Some of the contestants daring to enter the jungle this year are actually recognisable celebrities: X Factor’s Stacey Solomon, actor and

charmer Nigel Havers, former athlete Linford Christie and recently booted politician Lembit Opik. With this diverse range of characters, we’re bound to enjoy witnessing friendships (and perhaps romances) develop and a whole host of petty squabbles ensuing. Legendary presenters Ant and Dec are back with their fun loving wit as they get ready, once again, to mock and mimic each other as well as the celebrities to provide us with some fantastic comedy and entertainment. You can’t help but love these two Geordie guys, who really do help make the show as entertaining as it is! Who will be this year’s Queen or King of the Jungle? Tune in every Wednesday night on ITV to find out! Don’t forget to tune in to ITV2’s I’m A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here Now! after the show on ITV1 for all the latest gossip and action from the jungle. Presenter Caroline Flack is back to host the show this year, which brings extra entertainment and behind the scenes action from camp. Celebrity guests will join her in the gossip and will be getting involved in their own mini trials. Maria Moffatt

tv previews Accused Monday 9pm, BBC1


Mon, Tues, Thurs, Fri on BBC1 Stacey teeters on the brink of revealing her deepest, darkest secret, while Max struggles to support an increasingly unstable Lauren. Shirley comes into the money and can’t resist splashing the cash, but her secret threatens to be exposed. Meanwhile Darren and Jodie give Tamwar some dating tips, but Zainab is unimpressed.


Ant and Dec: The cheeky presenters return for more celebrity baiting

Weekdays 7pm on ITV Paddy confronts Rhona over her plan to leave, but she is thrown by some unexpected news. Chas urges Aaron to think seriously before committing to Jackson, and at the end of the week she takes her revenge on Carl to the next level. Meanwhile Nathan sells Home Farm, but has his buyer got something to hide?

Hollyoaks When Playboys Ruled the World Monday 10:35pm, ITV1

The Family Tuesday 9pm, Channel 4

BBC Radio 1’s Teen Awards Wednesday 7pm, BBC3

Weekdays 6.30pm on C4 News of the disaster spreads around the village, with Malachy’s life in jeopardy as his condition steadily worsens. Ste listens to Amy’s voicemail message and thinks he knows who is responsible for the blaze last week. Meanwhile Cheryl sets out to confront Brendan about his sexuality and Bart propositions Anita, much to Jasmine’s horror.


Monday nights on the BBC are about to get exciting as BAFTAwinner Jimmy McGovern brings new drama Accused, the “spiritual successor to The Street” to our screens, starring Christopher Eccleston and Mackenzie Crook. The six-part series has each episode following a different individual’s journey from a normal life to the dock, revealing how they came to be there as well as their fate. The drama shows simply the crime and the punishment - “the two things that matter most in any crime drama” according to McGovern - leaving the audience to make their own judgement about the protagonist’s guilt. Monday’s episode tells the story of loving father yet unfaithful husband Willy, who is desperate to pay for his daughter’s wedding. When he finds something on the backseat of a taxi, it could be the answer to his prayers. Tune in to see how events turn against him, and whether or not he does become the accused.

No, not Hugh Hefner and his infamous magazine; When Playboys Ruled the World is a dazzling new documentary focusing on the professional and private lives of two of the biggest names in motorsport: Formula 1 driver James Hunt and motorcycle champion Barry Sheene. Using original interviews with the daredevils themselves, as well as archive footage of their skills on the track, and opinions and anecdotes from their families, friends and motorsport experts, ITV Sport hopes to shine a light on the two motorsport heroes, including how they became such good friends despite their differences. The documentary will also look back at the pair’s hell-raising antics including drug taking, womanising and dining at posh restaurants with pet dogs, which earned each of them the undesirable tag of ‘playboy’. If you thought today’s sports stars were badly behaved, just tune in to this documentary to see how sports stars really used to live it up.

The BAFTA-nominated documentary The Family returns with a new series, filming a black British family around the clock over eight weeks. The Adesinas are a large family living in the heart of Hackney. Vicky and her husband Sunday have been married for 30 years, and are conventional Nigerian parents with strong views on God, relationships and family values. They have four British-born children from 15 to 27, all living at home but with completely different routines and lifestyles. Together they run the family business: a Nigerian takeaway and restaurant. Generational tensions simmer as the streetwise kids collide with their parents’ old-fashioned ways. For the Adesinas, this is a very hectic period, with birthday celebrations, love-life revelations and business squabbles as the family’s unity is severely tested. In an action packed first episode, Mum plans a spectacular party to celebrate Dad’s 60th birthday.

BBC Radio One has recently celebrated the first Teen Awards and this Wednesday the highlights are being broadcast on BBC Three. Hosted by Nick Grimshaw and Fearne Cotton, the show is a combination of the BRIT Awards and the Pride of Britain. Three awards are presented to three outstanding teenagers in the categories of Teen Community Hero, Teen Entrepreneur and Teen Hero. Be prepared to shed a tear as we listen to the moving stories behind these individuals. Celebrities are also presented with awards such as Best Song, Best Album and Best TV Show. After they have accepted their awards, Gemma Cariney from Radio 1Xtra will be backstage finding out the gossip and if there has been any drama. With performances from JLS, The Wanted and Professor Green, you could have it on in the background as you get ready for a night out or just embrace a bit of light hearted entertainment.

Gemma Farina

Aimee Philipson

Simon Riddlesden

Rosie Daly

Weekdays 1.45pm & 5.30pm on Five This week Kate learns who really pushed Paul. Libby and Steph finally have a showdown. Donna prepares a homemade meal for Ringo; what could possibly go wrong? Steph hangs out at Woody’s house and Summer enlists Lyn to help get her back, but she finds out Steph has done a runner. She turns to Libby for help, but will she help her former best friend?

Home and Away

Weekdays at 2.15pm & 6pm on Five John prepares to propose to Gina, but Shandi’s arrival threatens to scupper his plans and he’s shocked when she reveals her true identity to him. Indi reveals that she’s acting strangely because she’s worried that Romeo will treat her badly like her ex. Tragedy strikes as Mitzy and Marilyn fall out and when Marilyn confronts her, Mizty collapses. Will she make it? Lynsey Fawcett TV & Radio Editor


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

Culture TV & Radio

tv highlight

Children in Need 2010 Friday 7pm BBC1

The show returns to our screens with a night of entertainment, fundraising and an opportunity to donate to those that need it. BBC

Sir Terry Wogan and Pudsey come together to help raise money for disadvantaged children in the UK and abroad

Pudsey and Sir Terry Wogan are back this week with the 31st Children in Need. Tess Daly also cohosts as the duo present hours of entertainment, including performances from the UK’s top TV personalities, music and theatrical acts. Every year the BBC manage to create an incredible show and this year is no exception. There are performances from Cheryl Cole, Alexander Burke, Westlife and Maroon 5. JLS

will also be performing this years official Children In Need single, Love you More, with all proceedings going towards helping children around the UK. There will be some cringe worthy moments as the ladies from Loose Women attempt to recreate Girls Aloud’s ‘The Promise’ and Peter Andre does a tribute to Michael Jackson. Also we can’t forget that the BBC

newsreaders will attempt to sing and dance whilst donning some fancy dress outfits. This annual spectacle confuses me. I am still mentally scarred after Bill Turnbull performed The Rocky Horror Show in fishnet tights several years ago. A guaranteed highlight will be when the newly reformed Take That (and Robbie Williams) perform together. Rumours are that they will perform their latest single,

‘The Flood’, and one of their classic songs. I am personally hoping for a medley of all their hits. There will also be loads of soap-related stuff, with Eastenders and Coronation Street getting involved again as they do every year. The Dragons Theo Paphtitis, Peter Jones and Duncan Bannatyne will be participating in a one off special of Come Dine With Me exclusively for Children in Need. Each dragon will cook one course of the meal and draw straws for which would be their task for the night. All three have been tweeting for suggestions. It will be very entertaining seeing these competitive men on the other side of the judging fence! With so much entertainment it is easy to forget the reason the show is broadcast. Children in Need is a fantastic charity which raises money for disadvantaged children all over the UK. Throughout the show we will hear stories from people the money is helping, which ranges from children suffering from cancer to children who are the sole carers for their parents. All shown are incredibly brave, coping with challenging circumstances, and are dependent on your donations to make their lives a little easier. You can either donate money on the night, or if you are brave enough, embark on a fundraising activity. Last year a record breaking £39 million was raised; hopefully we can raise even more this year. Rosie Daly

top 5 radio shows Rosie Daly sums up the top five picks this week on the radio. Going out with Alan Carr, Radio 2, Saturdays 6-8pm Not only is Alan Carr the Chatty Man from Channel 4, but he also presents a hilarious radio show every Saturday. He hosts alongside Melanie Sykes and plays a variety of music ranging from Gloria Gaynor to Paloma Faith, getting the audience involved in the brilliant and hilarious Carr-oake. It is a perfect alternative to watching X Factor on a Saturday evening. Official Chart Show with Reggie Yates, Radio 1, Sundays 4-7pm After a succession of poor presenters (anyone remember Wes?) Reggie has helped bring the Chart Show back into popularity. He counts down the official top 40 singles of the week and also does a rundown of the album charts. The combination of friendly banter and great celebrity guests means Reggie helps what can be monotonous Sunday afternoons fly by. Fearne Cotton, Radio 1, Weekdays 10am-12.45pm Without doubt the best feature of Fearne’s show is the Live Lounge. The audience can hear their favourite artists perform acoustic versions of their own songs and do a cover of someone else’s. Recent highlights were Kylie’s breathtaking cover of The Hurt’s ‘Wonderful Life’. With performances from the

Alan Carr graces the waves Sat 6-8

Script on 17 November and Take That on 22 November, the Live Lounge will definitely be worth tuning into in the next few weeks. The Top 10 at 10, Metro Radio, weekdays 10am Stuart Elmore presents this show, which provides an ideal way to test your music knowledge. He plays ten songs during the hour, and listeners are challenged to guess which year they come from. Its easy to get addicted as you feel you have to listen until you know the answer; slightly problematic if you are about to go into a lecture. Simon Mayo, Radio 2, Weekdays 5-7pm The show is a mixture of interviews, music and topical debates, yet the best feature by far is ‘Confessions’. Guilt ridden members of the public write in and ask Simon Mayo for forgiveness after committing a ‘sin’. The sins are always hilarious to listen to, and in the past have included trying to leave a wedding early and a dental nurse giving patients the wrong set of false teeth.

nsr schedule

Monday 10-11: NSR Chart Show 11-12: Homemade Jam 12-1: Tom Warren 1-2: NSR Film 2-3: Matt Guy – The Classics Hour 3-4: Edwina Chan & Olivia Thurrell 4-5: William Tasker – Themoglobin 5-6: Rebecca Hollingdale – Bee’s Banging Beats 6-8: Louise Morris – Busy Doing Nothing 8-9: NSR Introduces 9-10: Dougal Binnie – International Times Tuesday 10-11: Callum Sibley – Morning Glory 11-12: Lucy Johnson – Miss Connections 12-1: Tom Jafferty – The Manual 1-2: NSR Juke Box 2-3: Kieran Flynn & Lorenzo Squire – It’s bigger than the Hip-Hop 3-4: C. Yeates, L. Sanderson & S. Gray – For the Record 4-5: Emma Humphreys – Afternoon Tea 5-6: James Tabbinor & Thomas Waldron – Imagine That 6-7.30: James Fairfield – Progressive Amplification 7.30-9: Elliot Bentley & Aimee Palmer – A&E 9-10: Chris Render – Music or the Misery Wednesday 10-11: Nile Amos 11-12: Ewan Biggs – The Biggs Show 12-12.30: NSR News 12.30-1: Charles Barry – Loudmouths 1-2: Patrick McCluskey – Peel’s Ghost 2-3: Kat Norry & Miranda Dobson – The Alternative News 3-4: Josh Tweedie – Back to the Future 4-4.30: NSR Ents 4.30-5: Annie-Rose Harrison-Dunn – Euphony 5-6: Kit McCormick & Daniel Carr – Spodiedopalicious 6-7: Chris Tindall – Reggae Toast 7-8.30: Joelle Lerner & Rosamund Fraser – Guava Beats 8.30-10: Hedd Thomas – United World Radio Thursday 10-11: Duncan Swainsbury & Matt Dunn - The C-Word 11-12: Max Beavis – Golden Wonder 12-1: R. Anderson – Flashback 1-2: Ros Howes & Katy Covell – Music from Movie Moments 2-3: John Challis & Rob Haughton Trashed Organ 3-4: Gaby Sarll – Hit the Decks 4-5: Joe Vann 5-6: Becca Such – Angry Beavers 6-7.30: Helen Stephenson – NSR in your Bass 7.30-9: Nick Blair – Dance In Union 9-10: Stephen Ferrell – Rave Soc Friday 10-11: Cara Brennan – In the Laundrette 11-12: Max O’Collins + Joe Shaw – Choons and a Chin Way 12-1: NSR Sport 1-2: Charles Campell – Soundcheck 2-3: Rosie Libell + Sarah Firby – Faces for Radio 3-4: Rob Denby – Little Rob Big Tunes 4-5: J. Skrebels – Southern Comfort 5-6.30: Kirsty Graham – Live Transmission 6.30-8: George McSorley – Proper Education 8-10: Mark C-L – MMMMMMM!

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


Culture TV & Radio


radio highlights

While the rest of the broadcasting week may showcase the diverse music taste that NSR specialises in, Tuesday night is all about a dynamic mix of rock shows. Kicking things off at 4 is Afternoon Tea with Emma Humphreys, an upbeat dose of punk, ska and emo featuring the likes of Billy Talent and Blink 182. This, combined with the charm of the host, makes this a fun introduction to the evening’s line up. Following it is Imagine That with James Tabbinor and Tom Waldron, which continues the evening’s proceedings with a more indie/blues/ twist on things. Progressive Amplification is next from 6 till 7:30 and is a show that I highly recommend everyone tunes in for (mainly ‘cause its mine!). Each week we introduce listeners to upcoming bands in the world of alternative rock, as well as giving you a taste of the bands that simply got us loving this great, but sometimes stereotyped, genre of music. 7:30 till 9 on the other hand takes the evening into heavier and darker waters, with A&E Radio with Aimee Palmer and Elliot Bentley; giving you a healthy serving of metal and hard rock. And finally our night is concluded with Chris Render’s The Music or The Misery? This neatly ties up the night with a decent combination of everything that Tuesday evenings have to offer. The other week, NSR had a stall at BBC Radio 3’s Free Thinking festival at the Sage and recorded two live shows that were recorded on site during the eventful weekend. The podcasts can be found on the website, as well as other audio highlights, including interviews with guest speakers and general banter recorded on the concourse.

The third series of the BBC’s witty and irreverent science discussion show starts this week, with popular physicist Prof. Brian Cox and comedian Robin Ince once again taking the helm. Comedian Andy Hamilton joins Brian and Robin for the first episode, and they will be discussing some of the world’s wackiest apocalyptic theories (we all know that some crazy ones exist), as well as those that are more grounded and with a stronger scientific basis. The Mayans’ ancient prediction of global annihilation in 2012 will be humorously probed and discussed. Did they know something we don’t? There will be debate over whether some of the more plausible theories should be studied by scientists, from near-Earth asteroids to climate change and deadly pandemics. It’s not just close at hand hypothetical crises like 2012 on the show; even the faraway problem of the Sun burning out will be talked about (although we do have roughly 5 billion years to wait before really having to worry about that happening, so you can listen secure in the knowledge that the sun will shine for a while yet). Ellie Wilson TV & Radio Editor

James Fairfield Head of Programming & Production

debate Yes

The Infinite Monkey Cage Monday 4.40pm, BBC Radio 4

Night Waves Thursday 9.15pm, BBC Radio 3

Celebrated Grand Designs presenter Kevin McCloud has become an inspirational figure to home builders across the country, through his well presented coverage of some very wild and wonderful building projects. But before becoming known as a TV personality, Kevin studied History of Art and Architecture at Corpus Christi College, Cambridge and, after graduating worked as a theatre designer. He later went on to set up his own lighting design practice and manufacturing business, and is also an honorary fellow of the Royal Institute of British Architects. As part of BBC Radio 3’s Free Thinking festival of ideas, Kevin takes a moment out of his busy filming schedule with Grand Designs and steps away from the building site to deliver a lecture entitled ‘Ben Franklin and Shopping.’ Kevin aims to deliver the message that people need to rediscover the value of true craftsmanship, as he believes that it is the only way to match creativity and excellent design with the sustainable materials of the future. His wealth of knowledge and depth of expertise will surely make this an insightful talk. Ellie Wilson TV & Radio Editor


The University’s relaunched and rebranded TV channel, The Courier Television (TCTV), has been given a brilliant start this year. The coverage of Freshers’ Week was fantastic, featuring interviews with freshers, the chaos of movingin day and reports from the various organised nights throughout the week. TCTV’s new feature Bigg Market Banter is also very promising. TCTV wait outside Skint at Blu Bambu on a Thursday and film the people that come out. What better amusement is there than watching drunk students being asked questions and given challenges? In the first instalment, the interviewees seem to be getting their charm on with some of the answers to the question ‘What would you spend your last fiver on?’ being: “kissing her” while pointing to interviewer Beth Sissons and “I’d spend it on you” straight to camera. The challenge is then set for those featured to say the alphabet backwards, with one girl responding very confidently with the letter Z, over and over again. Her friend

fares slightly better, who manages to make it to Y. It is encouraging to see some genuine concern from one rather worse-for-wear guy, as he asks a girl if she’s OK, “because [she’s] running around a lot and seems very unstable.” In the second instalment, when asked to demonstrate a hidden talent, one girl gives a sterling rendition of Maria from The Sound of Music, while another demonstrates some very unusual tongue clicking, to a mixture of distaste and amazement. Then the somewhat inadvisable starjump challenge starts: for me drunk students plus starjumps in the rain is a recipe for disaster. There are no casualties though, and everyone seems very eager to be the one who does the most! Visit The Courier website at www. or search for TCTV’s YouTube channel TheCourierOnline to see all the videos for yourself! (To be updated about new videos, just click subscribe). Ellie Wilson TV & Radio Editor

tweets of the week Peter Serafinowicz Marvin Gaye also recorded “NonSexual Healing”, for use in doctors’ surgeries.

Sarah Millican Lovely nap on train. Woke up just in time for tea to be the right temperature. Expert at being me.

Marcus Brigstocke Oh goodie you’re playing #slightlywrongfilmquotes with me. Yippee. ‘No body puts baby over there facing that corner’ - Dirty Dancing.

Stephen Fry Snuggling down to watch Caspar the Friendly Ghost and already feeling all warm and Christmassy. Hurrah!

Andi Peters @Schofe I’m still getting over the ‘larger’ man having to balance on that bar on The Cube!!!

Graham Linehan Standing ovation threshold getting lower every week. Next week they’ll give Dermot one. #xfactor

Are TV presenters right to put the progression of their own careers above their loyalty to one channel?

We’ve heard a lot in the news these past few months about presenters moving channels, with a big emphasis on money influencing their decisions. When Adrian Chiles felt obliged to leave The One Show after they drafted in Chris Evans to cover Fridays, he was soon followed by his previous sidekick Christine Bleakley. Yes, Daybreak has not had the best ratings, but that can’t just be down to the new presenters. A show takes months if not years to build up a cult following, it doesn’t mean they should have stayed at the BBC all their careers. The BBC tends to be too controlling at times and presenters are exclusively limited to that channel, so who would blame them for wanting to venture out. Presenters aren’t expected to be limited to one channel their whole career life. Why wouldn’t they want to move to ITV, which has a bit more diversity and a whole new audience? Take Dermot O’Leary. He was practically unheard of unless you were a die hard Big Brother fan watching him on BBLB every weekday. But after his move to ITV to host the ever popular X Factor he became a household name, raking

in millions and watching his career go from strength to strength. Yes it’s been argued that money is the main drive, but we all know celebrities get paid absurd amounts whatever they do, but that’s not necessarily the reason presenters move. Paul O’Grady moved from his teatime

“The BBC tends to be too controlled ... presenters are exclusively limited to that channel, so who would blame them for wanting to venture out? “ chat show on C4 to ITV, but now he has a show once a week rather than weekdays, which he claims is better for his health. If the fans like a presenter, there’s no reason why they won’t keep their following. If a popstar can change music, a presenter can change channel. People don’t like change, they like shows to be like comfy old slippers, comfortable and familiar. But everyone needs a new pair eventually and once their settled, they’ll love it. Lynsey Fawcett TV & Radio Editor

No As I read ITV’s press release for Daybreak, I can’t help but sneer at its glowing irony: “We are determined to attract new viewers to our revitalised breakfast show”. Oh dear. If Adrian Chiles and Christine Bleakley knew they’d attract even less viewers than GMTV, I’m sure they’d still be sitting on The One Show’s sofa. But perhaps they deserve it. The BBC gave Christine countless opportunities to stay at the place where her career kicked off – but the money ITV was offering seemed to cloud her instinct. I’m sure the daunting thought of a career minus Chiles added to the attraction of joining ITV – however, she clearly forgot who it was that created the pair. The BBC, they should have realised, is experienced enough and funded well enough to know what its audiences want, whereas ITV - though a great organisation – seems too focused on making cash from competitions and appears too patronising. This is why, I believe, Daybreak became Daybroke, and why Adrian and Christine’s careers could be going down the pan. In choosing cash over commitment, they’ve shown how leaving for an-

other TV station results in presenters losing the respect of many fans. However, this is not just a BBCITV problem. Take Richard and Judy, who quit the popular showThis Morning after an enticing call from Channel 4. Were they expecting more viewers in the teatime slot, or did that not matter as long as the money sounded good? Whatever their reasons were, their ratings and dignity sank. Then they

tried their luck again, with digital channel Watch. Hey presto, once again their ratings were dropping like a lead balloon. This problem, I realise, is likely to carry on – but money-motivated presenters need to realise the importance of staying loyal to the channel and fans that made them who they are. Adam Rummens

Christine and Adrian’s move to ITV hasn’t been as successful as anticipated.

Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER


Puzzles Culture


Puzzles Editor: Andy Pitkeathley -



1. Japanese raw fish and rice dish (5) 8. Have the quality of being (2) 9. 2007 film based on robotic toys (12) 11. Reproducing software programme or virus (4) 12. Piece of cloth to cover a hole 13. Sicilian volcano (4) 14. Popular cinema name (5) 16. Awful (8) 17. Patriotic airline (abbrev.) (2) 18. Legendary English outlaw (5, 4) 20. Feeling after a burden is removed (6) 23. Metal engine covering (6) 24. 1974 American political scandal (9) 26. Referring to (abbrev.) (2) 27. Mode of transport used by skiers (5, 3) 29. Greek epic poem about the siege of Troy (5) 31. Celestial body (4) 33. West Yorkshire City (5) 34. Alternative protein source from a bean (4)

35. 1995 Oasis song (7, 5) 37. 1982 film about a homesick alien (2) 38. Smell (5)

Down 1. Better than the rest (6, 2, 4) 2. Confidence trick (4) 3. Common term for anything computer-related (2) 4. Temple of goddess Athena (9) 5. Type of biscuit (6) 6. Unit of electrical current (6) 7. Smile (4) 10. Globe type object (6) 12. Numerical constant proportional to the area of a circle (2) 15. Constellation known as ‘The Hunter’ (5) 17. Police device for testing alcohol consumption (12) 19. Headwear (3) 20. Type of cereal (3) 21. Not unlawful (5) 22. Chilli peppers (9) 25. Fatigue after flying (3, 3) 27. Popular Mexican beer (6) 28. The study of plants (6) 30. A note added at the end of a

word link SUB










Use the clues and the keypad to find the answers to the grid using the week’s theme to help you. For example the number 3 in a clue could be D, E or F. This week’s theme is Countries.

Last week’s crossword answers


word steps

Find the word that can be placed between these words to make two new words or phrases

phone in

letter (2) 32. 2004 Brad Pitt epic movie (4) 34. Part of London’s West End (4) 36. American slang word (2)


The aim of this puzzle is to fill each box so that each column, each row and 3×3 grid contains the numbers 1-9 just once.

Work your way down the steps from CARD to YOLK by filling in each step with a genuine four letter word. As you take each step change one letter of the previous word keeping the rest of the letters in the same order.




1. 2822 1. 24462 2. 272945 3. 2878742 4. 787742 5. 372623

The clues below will help but they may not correspond to the order of the steps. Clues • Southern county in Republic of Ireland • A term used for string or rope • Northern city famous for its Minster Last week’s Sudoku answers

andy’s number cruncher Keep your brain in shape by trying to complete these sums as fast as you can without using a calculator



Half this


Divide by 3


Divide by 4


MEDIUM Last week’s phone in answers

logical What does this say?



Times itself

Divide 3/5 of by 0.2 this


2/3 of this


7/9 of Square root this

-15 = +13 =

75% of Square Divide Divide this this by 16 by 0.3

logic problem


Square root

A dealer bought a painting for £70, sold it for £80, bought it back again for £90 and sold it again for £100. How much profit did he make?

answers Word Steps: Card, Cord, Cork, York, Yolk Number Cruncher: Easy = 93, Medium = 20, Hard = 30 Word Link: Way, Test, Stop, Stick, Door Last week’s Logic Problem: The two fathers and two sons are a son, a dad and a grandad - three people so three fish. Last week’s Logical: Sell in part exchange


THE COURIER Monday November 15 20100


England vs France Hurricanes feel preview the Loko-motion SportsEditors: Editors: Paul Christian, Gavin Tom James - Sports Paul Christian, JamieJamie Gavin and Tomand James -

> Sport, page 38 > Intra Mural Football, page 40-41

Sports Editors: Jono Taylor, Wills Robinson and Kat Bannon -

The Tiger who lost his stripes

Sports Editor Jono Taylor looks at the demise of Woods and whether he can ever recover It has become commonplace. The winner of 71 PGA Tour events and 14 major championships approaches the tee, and tries to settle his nerves. His head is bowed, his shoulders tense, and his nerves unbearable. The eyes of the world are upon him. He stares ominously at the ball, while the crowd holds its breath in anticipation. The highest-paid professional athlete in the world is under pressure. He swings, and the ball is hit heavily left, taking a one-way route into the ‘long stuff’. The crowd jitters, the pundits begin to make puns about how ‘the mighty have fallen’, and Tiger Woods throws his club to the ground in complete disgust. The demise of golf’s most famous son has been nothing short of astonishing. Tiger was the world number one for a record 281 consecutive weeks, and is the undisputed holder of a variety of golfing honours. He has won more PGA Tours and major tournaments than any other golfer since the great Jack Nicklaus. Aged 21, he was the youngest player ever to win a Grand Slam, and he has also been awarded the widelyacclaimed PGA Player of the Year a record ten times. According to Golf Digest magazine, Woods earned over $760 million between 1996 and 2007, and this figure is expected to have easily surpassed a billion by last year. Tiger Woods has contentiously been the greatest sporting phenomenon in the past few decades. He has been to the top, and has won every award on his way to glory. It is astounding that the man is still only 34 years old. On 27 November 2009, the career of Tiger Woods changed dramatically, following a seemingly unsuspicious car accident in Florida outside of his home shortly after 2am local time. Speculation began to grow in the world press that Woods had been involved in a number of extramarital affairs, something that was never played down by Tiger nor his press team. Only days later, the former world number one announced his shock decision not to take part in his own charity event, The Chevron World Challenge, while Jaimee Grubbs, a cocktail waitress from San Diego, released a host of explicit text messages to the press that had all allegedly been sent to her from Woods. This again was never denied, and was given fuel to burn on December 4th 2009 when Woods released a vague statement about the current allegations. The most intriguing sentence that captivated the

world press was one of admittance and submission: “I am dealing with my behaviour and personal failings behind closed doors with my family. Those feelings should be shared by us alone”. Tiger Woods’ pleas for privacy naturally fell upon the deaf ears of the media. Afterall, a potential story of marital infidelity by the world’s most recognizable sports star is something that would undoubtedly sell papers by the million. On December 11th, Woods released a further apology to the media, while on the same day, his lawyers successfully obtained an injunction preventing the publication of any images of Woods naked across the UK. This was essentially a formal confession- Tiger was desperately trying to cover his tracks. The news stunned the global media and Woods’ career appeared to be spiralling out of control. By January 2010, golf’s most influential player saw his sponsorship deals at Gillette, Accenture, TAG Heuer and AT&T terminated with immediate effect. After enduring a gruelling two months with his name brandished on the front page of every tabloid paper in the land, Woods finally came out of hiding on February 19 2010. In a live television speech from Florida, he admitted to cheating on his wife and mother of his two sons, Elin Nordegren. Reports in the media have printed allegations that Tiger Woods openly admitted to cheating with over 120 different women during his marriage to Nordegren. Divorce was inevitable and was finalised on August 23rd 2010. Tiger Woods was allegedly forced to pay between $100-500 million worth of assets to his former wife. Within a year, Woods had fallen from the top of the world to the bottom. Before that fateful day in November 2009, Tiger enjoyed the adoration of the world, and was truly considered to be one of the most supreme sporting role models ever to have graced the world. His reputation now remains in tatters, his credibility broken, and his talent lost. Two weeks ago, Tiger Woods was replaced as world number one by England’s Lee Westwood, ending a record 281 consecutive weeks at the summit of world golf. It remains to be seen whether Tiger can bite back. His form since his personal scandal has been nothing short of woefuland his decision to play in the 2010 Ryder Cup last month did little to

Worried: After being replaced as world number one recently, the future of golf’s most famous son has been called into question

restore his tarnished reputation. The demise of Woods remains astonishing. His 71 PGA Tour and 14 major championship wins have almost been forgotten. The name of Tiger Woods is now synonymised with ‘cheat’ and ‘liar’. The highest paid professional athlete in the world has paid a heavy price for his unprofessional and appalling behaviour over the last twelve

months. However what must not be forgotten is how much he has given to the world of golf. He made a mistake that is beyond repair, and he perhaps will never be looked upon in the same way as he was in his prime. He will be the target of mockery and criticism for the rest of his life, there is little doubt about that. I for one however hope that Tiger Woods does manage to get

his life back on the right track, and returns to what he is unquestionably talented at- playing golf. Woods’ lesson is there for all to see and learn from. It is now up to him to defy the critics- golf’s most famous son has been severely wounded, but write him off at your peril. The king has been dethroned, but mark my words, he will return.

Chilean miner defies the odds in sensational marathon Grace Harvey Chilean miner Edison Pena successfully completed the New York Marathon only weeks after being rescued from the collapsed mine shaft in Northern Chile. Despite hobbling across the finish line with a bad knee, Pena completed the 26

mile race in under six hours; a truly incredible feat. The 34 year old fitness-enthusiast spent his time in the mine continually running around the 700m tunnels, often in heavy working boots in a bid to sustain his fitness. Most runners construct a training programme built around a specific calorie intake and rigorous train-

ing regime, yet Edison’s training consisted simply in running up and down the humid mines, often towing a wooden crate to build stamina and strength. Whilst Pena was sometimes running up to several miles a day, many of his fellow miners feared for his safety and physical health; food was scarce and in Pena’s case,

quickly burned off. Nevertheless it was exactly this that inspired Pena’s challenge and he hopes that no one else need ever be in the situation or poverty that was forced upon the 33 miners for just over two months. Following a media whirlwind including appearances across US television and countless radio and newspaper interviews, the miner

hopes to continue to raise awareness for world hunger and deprivation. The men’s marathon title was claimed by Ethiopian Gebre Gebremariam whilst marathon record holder Haile Gebrselassie was forced to stop incurring an injury after 16 miles.


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER


NUSWC hoping to make a splash S. MAC MANUS

Jono Taylor Sports Editor Newcastle University’s Swimming and Waterpolo Club is perhaps not one of the most widely recognized teams, but is certainly a club with high ambitions for the future. Upon meeting club President Stuart Mac Manus, waterpolo President Tom Connolly and men’s waterpolo captain Ali Walker, I knew only the basics of waterpolo that my beloved saviour Wikipedia had supplied me. However the more I heard, the more intrigued I became. “It’s almost like a game of underwater rugby”, explained Ali. “There is a lot of off-the-ball stuff and it’s really quick tempo, so waterpolo is a really spectator-friendly sport”. I found it hard not to disagree, as the more I heard, the more appealing it sounded. Each game in waterpolo consists of four quarters of eight minutes with each team having seven players in the pool at any one time, including a goalkeeper. The sport is not too dissimilar from basketball- the players have 30 seconds to score or shoot, and possession is turned over if failed to do so. It is an extremely quick sport that requires high levels of fitness- it is forbidden for players to touch the bottom or sides of the pool when the ball is in play. Most interestingly, water polo is a full contact sport that does have a reputation of having a bit of an edge to it- Stuart’s analysis that “what happens under the water can’t be seen” seemed very intriguing. The Swimming and Waterpolo club at the University has around 75 members and caters for all

‘A game of underwater rugby’: Newcastle University’s Swimming and Waterpolo Club is one with massive potential for the future

standards; Catherine Freeman an elite athlete, Alex Smith has represented Team GB Youth in the past, and Stuart Mac Manus trialled for the Irish Celtic Nations waterpolo team. However, the club does not boast exclusivity- a number of freshers have joined the club this year and it has high aspirations to rapidly expand in the future. The club takes pride in catering for all needs, from total beginners to elite athletes. Both waterpolo and swimming are

BUCS sports and as a result, both disciplines will be pitted against arch-rivals Northumbria on Sunday 12th and Wednesday 15th December respectively. For waterpolo, four BUCS points are up for grabs, with a hugely competitive set of matches expected. Before this however, both the men’s and women’s waterpolo sides have three games before February, with the top two out of a four-team regional group qualifying for the national semi-finals. Asked about his expectations

for the season, Stuart’s determination and drive was clear: “Both the men’s and women’s sides should be looking at qualifying for the BUCS semi-finals, and that’s a minimum expectation. As well as this, both teams will be pushing to perform well in the UPolo leagues, and hopefully continue to develop and transform this club into a real force at the university”. When asked about the ambitions for the future, Stuart, Tom and Ali

all seemed confident. However with the University not owning their own swimming pool, NUSWC are currently dividing their training and game-time between the City Pool and the Northumbria University equivalent. However, Stuart sees this as a huge blow for the ambitions of the club, with the amount of pool time for both the swimming and waterpolo athletes heavily restricted: “It’s a shame that Newcastle University does not have its own swimming pool because it would undoubtedly be used. If we had a university pool, I genuinely think that we would have the potential to build a BUCS winning swimming and waterpolo club; that’s how much talent I think that we have. It is difficult at the moment with having to book time in other pools, and that is a huge hindrance for the development of the club as a whole”. Swimming and waterpolo are sports that are rapidly expanding, with the club now boasting more members than ever before. The club perhaps does not get the recognition and respect that it clearly deserves. Both disciplines require undoubted commitment and personal determination, as well as a great deal of skill. With waterpolo going to be showcased in the 2012 Olympic Games in London, all within the sport hope that the Olympics will go on to give the game the platform for which it can evolve nationally- in both its recognition and participation. Interested in joining NUSWC? Email Stuart Mac Manus at

Capello: Give youth a chance Ultimate Frisbee leaves you spinning Charlie Scott

On Wednesday night Laurent Blanc’s new look France team will walk out onto the Wembley pitch for their eagerly anticipated ‘friendly’ against Fabio Capello’s depleted England side, with high hopes of getting one over on their neighbours. Both nations performed terribly in South Africa, and both are desperate to make amends. England stumbled through the group stages of the World Cup, and a dire performance against Algeria was marred by Wayne Rooney insulting his own nation’s fans, while John Terry’s immature egoism soon dominated the back pages. Germany sent England home prematurely, and above anything, the defeat made it clear that the English national team was well and truly past it. Meanwhile over at Les Bleus training camp, in true revolutionary style, irresolvable factions developed within the squad with Nicolas Anelka sent home for hurling obscenities at manager Raymond Domenech. Tempers flared again just days later, this time on the training pitch between Patrice Evra and the French fitness coach Robert Duverne. The team decided to boycott training, throwing the whole of French football into disrepute. A failure to qualify to the knock-out stages led to the inevitable sacking of Domenech, with Laurent given the tough job of rebuilding a nation’s pride. The squad Blanc will bring to Wembley will be nearly unrecognisable from the World Cup rebels. The team’s first two games under

Blanc showed little improvement, with a 2-1 loss in Norway followed by an inexcusable 1-0 home defeat by Belarus. Results have improved since however; a run of three 2-0 wins has put their Euro 2012 qualifying campaign back on track, and the French public are starting to forgive and forget. Karim Benzema has been ushered back into the mix and has repaid Blanc’s faith with two goals in the last three games, while Yoann Gourcuff is also starting to fulfil his potential on the international stage. Fabio Capello 2 July 2010: “We will look to introduce new players to give the team new energy and I will use all of my experience to take England forward”

For England, there is certainly youthful talent at Capello’s disposal, with Jack Wilshere certainly being tipped for big things in the future. Despite being only 18, it is not unreasonable to argue that he should already be starting for England. He is more comfortable on the ball than Gareth Barry, and the maturity he has shown in his performances for Arsenal so far this season lends weight to the painful footballing cliché, “if you’re good enough, you’re old enough”. Another player widely tipped to be a star of the future is Newcastle’s Andy Carroll, and he could prove to be Capello’s wild-card in

the upcoming EURO 2012 qualifying matches. His performances on the field for Newcastle have been exemplary this season, but his temperament off it has caused concern. Heralded as Alan Shearer’s heir at both club and international level, it will be interesting to see if the FA and Capello give the young striker a chance in a Three Lions shirt, or whether he will be overlooked as a result of his off the field problems. Wilshere and Carroll are just two from a steadily growing group of young English players in the Premier League whose performances this season merit a closer look in training as part of the national set-up, at the very least. Whether Capello has the nerve to release youth on the big stage remains to be seen. Then there are the not-so-young guns- those players who have peaked late in their careers, who may not have been remotely close to being in the national squad earlier in the careers but are now performing brilliantly for their clubs week in, week out. They too deserve a chance, especially when you consider how uselessly the World Cup squad performed in South Africa. Wednesday night is the perfect opportunity for both Fabio Capello and Laurent Blanc to experiment. Friendly internationals are the perfect stage for the likes of Wilshere and Carroll to be given a chance, with the long-term view of giving them experience and a feel of what it is like to be part of the national set-up, and the media circus that accompanies it. It’s time for Fabio to live up to his promises and give youth and form a chance.

Jimmy Booker Ultimate Frisbee may seem like an activity that looks tempting in Freshers’ Week but loses its appeal after you’ve signed up, not turned up to any sessions in the first month and had your inbox bombarded with emails regarding training, tournaments and socials. However, those well-intentioned few that carry out their Freshers’ Fair promises and do turn up, may well be in for a pleasant surprise. Ultimate Frisbee is branded as a bit of a cult by a lot of students, with many failing to see the attraction of throwing a glorified dinner plate around for an hour in place of more familiar and popular sports. It is certainly unique. I may go as far as to say an acquired taste. “We’re just us”, says one member of the team, perhaps slightly tonguein-cheek, but there’s absolutely no denying that the society love what they do, and have a brilliant time to boot. After a few minutes observing practice, I can honestly say I was won over by the skills needed to manipulate the disc, especially when a strong northernly wind and a blinding November sun are hampering proceedings in an exposed field at the side of the road. However, as the team point out, there is method behind this madness. When the team plays in the warmer, calmer conditions of indoors or inland, it is much easier to throw further and more accurately.

A high level of fitness is crucial. Whether it is the intense closeness of an indoor 5-a-side tournament or an hour long 7-a-side on a pitch the size of a rugby field, the sport requires speed, agility, power and endurance in order for players to succeed. It is refreshing to find a sport that relies entirely on ‘the spirit of the game’ as its rule-book. No officials are used even at professional level, and players often acknowledge their faults as opposed to waiting to be told they are in the wrong. Practice is a minimum of four times a week, with the addition of a fitness session thrown in there somewhere too, but the Ultimate Frisbee team, who are incidentally one of the more popular societies at Newcastle, do boast a hectic social calendar and a rather unusual drinking challenge. Apparently, a new Frisbee mathematically holds exactly three pints when upturned. Take this, two willing or unfortunate victi-sorry, volunteers, two McDonalds drinking straws and a stopwatch, and see how quickly they can finish it off. The record is, supposedly, eighteen seconds, which is pretty impressive even by Gazza’s standards. Many may scoff at a sport that, some would argue, contradicts itself in its name alone. However, I would encourage all students to keep their early university promises and give it a go. You may find that throwing this flying drinking vessel around could be a lot of fun.

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


Intra mural Sport

Ian FC stun holders in upset Mayonnaise fail to Intra Mural Football Cup

The Hurricanes Ian FC

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Harry Slavin at Close House Fourth division side Ian FC provided the shock of the round in the Intra Mural Cup competition as they eliminated last year’s winners The Hurricanes with surprising ease on Wednesday afternoon. On a soft pitch, The Hurricanes long ball tactics were easily dealt with by an organised Ian FC defence, and as a result, the fourth division side’s midfield took control of the tie and set up numerous chances. A number of balls flew across the Hurricanes’ box with no meaningful contact, but the signs were there, and eventually Ian’s dominance told mid-way through the first period. Arthur Davie, who had been giving Alex Smith and Harry Slavin a torrid time in defence, coasted past the pair once more to drive the ball low into the box where it was met and turned in by Ollie Richmond to give Ian a thoroughly deserved lead. The Hurricanes tried to muster a response, but a Chris McCrory header straight at the keeper was the only chance before Ian FC doubled their advantage. A foul on the edge of The Hurricanes’ area was harshly awarded and captain Ben Naughton had

no hesitation in slamming the free kick goalwards and seeing the ball nestle in the far corner, thanks to a wicked deflection off the wall. The difference in body language was clear to see as both teams went off for half time. The Ian FC players looked bemused by the ease of the first half, whilst The Hurricanes players looked like a group of Sunderland fans that had been made to sit through a re-run of their 5-1 loss to Newcastle. The second half saw the Hurricanes start with a lot more passion and endeavour, with chances being fashioned through decent football and sheer persistence, but lady luck did not appear to be with the favourites.

While The Hurricanes pushed forward in search of the goal, there were still warning signs as Ian FC continued to create chances - a rasping volley from Robbie Swailes serving as a reminder that The Hurricanes’ cup retention was still on life support, and FC were ready to pull the plug. The plug was eventually pulled with five minutes remaining as again Davie supplied Richmond, who coolly slotted past the keeper to claim his second of the match. The result left Ian FC dreaming of what might be in ties to come. A grief-stricken Andrew Selby was almost tearful in his post match interview, admitting the team must now concentrate on gaining promotion back to the first division.


Last Wednesday saw the start of the Intra Mural Cup, with a number of big upsets

see the funny side Intra Mural Football Cup

Ar-U-Shavin a Laugh Olympic Mayonnaise

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Charlie Clack at Close House After a night of rain and emails suggesting the fixture may have to be postponed, both teams may have been forgiven for a potential lack of enthusiasm at the prospect of playing at a wet and windy Close House. Ar-U-Shavin and Olympic Mayonnaise were in no such mood. The game started brightly with Ar-u-Shavin determined to topple a team from the higher realms of Intra Mural football, attacking with poise and purpose. A few early chances fell to the in-form Jonny ‘Angry’ Smith, but he could not find a breakthrough. The Mayonnaise men were not to be undone easily and nearly capitalised on a slip from the Ar-u-Shavin centre back, but were unable to find a way past the covering defenders. After twenty minutes, the flood gates began to open and Ar-UShavin were able to cut the Mayonnaise defence apart with ease. Jonny Smith scored twice in ten minutes, the second a rifling drive into the top corner from just inside the area, before Clack cut in from the left to

fire home giving Ar-u-Shavin an unexpected but deserved 3-0 lead going into half time. The second half began in the same vain, with a neat finish from towering midfielder Nick Parkinson effectively wrapping up the game shortly after the restart. Despite being now out of reach, Ar-u-Shavin continued to press with the type of flowing football they have been aiming to produce all season. Good work from Smith down the left allowed Axon to tap in to make it 5-0 before Mark Green scored with a bizarre combination of head, knee and shin to bundle the ball past the helpless keeper from about two yards. A late consolation from Mayonnaise ought to have ended the scoring, but with the last move of the game, Monaghan tapped the ball in after a goalmouth scramble to make the score an impressive 7-1 to the third division outfit. The game ended in dramatic fashion with an injury to the referee, who in turning sharply, twisted his knee and ended his officiating duties for the afternoon. Both teams wish him well. It was a dominant performance by Ar-u-Shavin, who have finally found their clinical touch after an early season league wobble. A date with Castle Leazes awaits in the next round, but for Ar-u-Shavin, the cup dream still lives on.

Hendo into second round after seeing off spirited Athletic Intra Mural Football Cup

Henderson Hall Never Been Athletic

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Adam Kaznowski at Longbenton 3G On a day when David met Goliath in the first round of the Intra Mural cup, Never Been Athletic of division four can consider themselves a little unfortunate not to have caused a huge upset against cup favourites Henderson Hall. It was a bright start from Hendo, with some excellent free flowing and crisp two-touch football that spectators of Intra Mural football have become accustomed to seeing. The positive start was rewarded with two early goals. The first was a penalty after Sean Watson was tripped by Athletic’s centre back Jonathan McCabe. Man of the match Patrick Mannion made no mistake with the spotkick. A second soon followed after good work by Chris Henderson, which was finished with aplomb by Hendo hard man Barnaby Baxter. Twenty minutes gone and already the tie seemed to be heading towards a cricket score. Yet more Henderson pressure and some excellent work down the right hand side led to a spectacular long-range effort from Baxter which the Athletic goalie, who was outstanding throughout, did well to tip over the bar. Hendo were never really troubled

by their lower league opponents in the first half, and scored a deserved third from striker François Dunesme just before the break. Never Been Athletic, with a kit reminiscent of that of the worldbeating Real Madrid team of the 50s, finally started to show their undoubted ability in the second half, and an early goal from Robin Hopwood after some poor Henderson defending from a free kick gave the underdogs a way back into the match. Henderson all of a sudden were a team under pressure, and even when manager Mike Connolly, sporting an unfortunate haircut, tried to shuffle his pack, the centre-back pairing of Warburton and Allsop were still kept busy by the speed and skill of the Ath’s strikers. A second goal for the whites seemed inevitable, and so it was as Josh Cockcroft made the most of a scrap in the Henderson box to make it 3-2. In the end, the fairy tale comeback was not to be and Henderson advanced, albeit slightly fortunately, to the next round. For Never Been Athletic, despite the fact that the game has marked the end of the road for them in the cup, their performance will no doubt give them a boost in their fight for promotion.

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Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

Sport BUCS

Newcastle break the ice in rivalry

Ice Hockey

Newcastle 2nds Northumbria 1sts

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Gabrielle Gunn at Whitley Bay Discipline and hard work from the Newcastle players along with clever tactics from coaches, Stuart Tomlinson and James Hadfield, made for a tight game against the heavily favoured Northumbria A team. Being Northumbria’s A team and having previously played in the A league, the Polys were not so pleasantly surprised to the underestimated Newcastle Wildcats B team. In the first period Uni vs Poly were neck and neck keeping the net minders on their toes as they managed to save one-on-one chances from both sides. Tensions rose as Wildcats forward Axle received a penalty for slashing, leaving them to fend with only four men. However, Wildcats managed to uphold their defence and came back to full strength when Axle re-joined his team mates. Only a few seconds after stepping back on to the ice Axle was able to put a sneaky wrist shot in the back of the net giving Wildcats a 1-0 lead. The lead was kept for

most of the first period but slipped away in the last few seconds and the Poly scored to level up. In the second period the Poly managed to score another two goals, a rebound near to the net and a lucky break one on one with the keeper making it 3-1. A two goal lead was not comforting enough for the poly side. Signs they were still worried were showing as a couple of punches were handed out to the Wildcat players. A monstrously illegal hit to Dan Davison put him out for the rest of the game as he had to be taken off with a concussion. Fighting back, Wildcats player Ed Brooks made a run for it out of their defending zone and into the attacking zone. Making it look easy, a cheeky deak in front of goal, with a cool backhand finish, made the score 3-2. Unfortunately the third period lead to another two goals from the Poly side. A humble win was not something to be taken by Northumbria. After the final whistle blew at 6-2, a cheap hit to the only Wildcat girl on the ice, Michelle Gamble, caused a few more fists to be thrown. It is obvious that Northumbria are feeling the heat in anticipation to play Newcastle A’s in the Stan Calvert Cup.


Newcastle proved too much to handle for Northumbria last week, in preparation for next month’s Stan Calvert Cup

Knights slay Hull Women’s Basketball

Hull 1sts Newcastle 1sts

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Jessica Ambler in Hull The Knights arrived in the pits of Hull with apprehension towards the team they were approaching. After trampling ahead of Newcastle Seconds for the promotion last year, the Hull side were reported as a pack of large, ghetto-blaster playing geezers. Newcastle came out of the blocks in a man-to-man defence to immediately get in the faces of their opposition. However, Hull took advantage of the home court and followed up their opening basket with a three-pointer. Holloway, with the aid of her new wheels, was a monster at both ends of the court and fought for possession with an almost Northern aggression. Lithuanian powerhouse, Egle Duleckyte, was unstoppable under basket and her strong drives were just the beginning of her personal 24 point score. Inga Vareikaite once again proved her shooting ability with a swish three-pointer that was more than just a ‘lucky’ shot. The Knights finished up the first quarter with a ten point lead that reflected their hard work and commitment to the game. The second quarter contained the same work rate and with the fresh legs of socialite Rosie Wowk the movement around the key remained strong. The Jackson head fake made its appearance and with powerful baseline moves, Hull committed repeat fouls allowing Emily to shoot from the line. Defence remained Newcastle’s strong point and Hull failed to penetrate through the middle relying on outside shots. Good boxing out from

Katie Boyd and fast outlet passing allowed the Knights to keep the lead at half time. Third quarter syndrome did strike for the Knights and Hull’s R. Dixon capitalised on it by scoring four successive baskets. Slow defensive rotations left players wide open for easy points, and Newcastle soon found themselves struggling to retain their lead. Coach Ballard used a time-out to re-focus the team, but back on the floor points were still not coming. Inaccurate passing meant easy steals for Hull as they pushed the ball down court beating the away side on fast breaks. However, Newcastle spirits were soon uplifted when a flying block from Fisher prevented Hull scoring further points. With everything to play for in the fourth quarter, Newcastle went back out with a positive attitude and determination in securing a win. However, as the lone referee ambled around the court, he made it clear he was going to be as quick on his whistle as he was on his feet. When Dynamo Duleckyte took an uncalled charge under the basket, Coach Ballard made his feelings clear resulting in a technical foul call from the trembling lipped ref. Hull missed their free shots causing the Knights bench to come alive. Newcastle fought back their lead and some great back-door cuts allowed Fisher to sink further points. The undefeated team showed their true potential and the noise both off and on court really changed the game. Newcastle took the lead and secured it by playing tough right up until the final whistle. Newcastle meet Sunderland next week on home ground for what could be an exciting grudge match. Tip off time is 8pm in the Newcastle sports hall and spectators are welcome to spur on the team in their bid for the league win.

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010

Poly stalemate at Cochrane Women’s Football

Newcastle 1sts Northumbria 2nds

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Grace Harvey at Cochrane Park Newcastle’s women remained undefeated this season and added another goal to their collection after a great performance against rivals Northumbria at Cochrane Park last week. Northumbria were quick to take control of the ball and managed to

sustain relative dominance early on, denying the hosts any opportunity to score. Newcastle also boasted a strong defence, however, but struggled to find a creative spark in the midfield to supply the strikers. Of course this was not for lack of effort, and featured an outstanding performance from Stephanie Pepper, who controlled the game throughout. Northumbria were organised and difficult to break down however, and continued to make it hard for the hosts to create any early clear-cut chances. After a tight opening 40 minutes, the game surged into life in the closing exchanges of the half. A defensive mistake by the Roy-

als allowed Northumbria to take the lead only minutes before the half-time whistle. However, Newcastle’s resilience was commendable, and after Heather Campbell and Lauren Wray set up an attack, within seconds Wray had chased the ball down and fired it into the net with phenomenal precision, equalising in the dying embers of the first half. The hosts continued to pressurise the Poly, and Newcastle’s tenacious defence ensured that the visitors failed to create any more opportunities to extend their lead. Newcastle continued to search for a winner late on, with Lizzie Tulip coming close to giving the hosts the

lead. However, precision eluded both sides, with the final whistle resulting in a 1-1 draw. After a frustrating match against a tough side, it would be hard to single out any particular players, but moreover a fantastic collective team effort. Captain Helen Palfrey is confident the team can maintain their position, commenting that “it was a solid team effort. We just need to create more opportunities”. If the team can iron out the minor creases highlighted in last week’s match and improve their accuracy in attack, they should be able to continue their undefeated run throughout the season.

Success for NUSSC at the Hillend slopes Chris Thompson in Edinburgh The British Universities Dry Slope Championships (BUDS) took place on the 5 and 6 November at the notorious Hillend artificial ski slope in Edinburgh. The annual event sees more than 3000 students and 1000 competitors decent on the Scottish capital for a weekend of competitions from ski slalom to board bigair. Newcastle University Ski and Snowboard Club (NUSSC) have a highly successful history at this event, and with expectations as high as ever, 50 NUSSC members made the trip north this year. Friday 5 November staged the ski slalom and the board giant slalom. After 2 hard-fought runs Benn Hall of NUSSC came in first overall in the boys and Hannah Parker earned fifth place in the ladies.

The hotly contested ski giant slalom, the Boarder-X and the Big Air were the order of the day on Saturday 6, followed by the blue ribband event, the ski and board dual slalom. Benn Hall again took the title in the mens ski giant slalom and Hannah Parker took fourth place and some well earned BUCS points in the ladies race. In an exciting ski dual slalom, the second ski team took third place overall following the unfortunate exit of the First team earlier in the competition. These results culminated in a respectable 34 BUCS points earned for Team Newcastle and the weekend was a resounding success for both competitors and spectators alike. However there were a number of casualties in the form of Pete Bruton, Lucy Drummond-Hay and Dominic Younger – lets hope they get well soon and back competing for NUSSC in no time!

Newcastle 3rds Sheffield 2nds

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Tom Sheppey at Cochrane Park Newcastle were unable to build on their win against the Poly as they slumped to their third league defeat of the season last week. An aggressive Sheffield outfit proved too much for the home side who found themselves under attack from all areas of the pitch, and conceded eight tries in an afternoon to forget. Newcastle made a shaky start as their defence struggled to organise itself, putting them under early pressure on their own five metre line. Unable to clear their lines, panic set in amongst the Newcastle ranks, resulting in a charged-down clearance gifting the away side the opening score. Newcastle clawed

3 points back thanks to a penalty kick from scrum half Jonty Green, but continued to make things easy for the opposition with another unforced error, which put the visitors in under the posts for their second try. The blinding sun made for unfavourable conditions at Cochrane

It was an afternoon to forget for Newcastle’s 3rds last week, as a clinical Sheffield outfit scored eight tries at Cochrane Park

Park, and proved a hindrance for the hosts, whose mounting catalogue of errors continued to grow.


Netball Round-up Harriet Needham

Newcastle 1sts 13 Loughborough 1sts 56 The Royals knew that an away game at Loughborough was going to be one of the toughest this season, and this proved true from the outset. Their England GS recently back from the Commonwealth games was particularly good at taking the ball from absolutely anywhere. However, the girls did not falter and kept pressuring the opponents from start to finish. There were great interceptions from the defensive players, and perfect feeds by WA and player of the match Katie Rimmer. The girls finally began to look like a team with some slick moves all the way down court. Each quarter bettered, the final quarter was easily the best performance, with a score line of only 12-9 to Loughborough, showing real determination from the Royals.

Newcastle 2nds Sheffield Hallam 2nds

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The team played remarkably well this week, taking the game from a relatively tight start to a confident end. A strong opposing defensive unit threatened to pressure the girls’ attack, but player of the match at GA, Anna Dickson and GS Fiona Moss soon got the better of them converting some exceptional shots. The girls’ defence has gone from strength to strength throughout the season, with much better communication and picking off some terrific interceptions. Even with some questionable calls from the umpires, the girls did not waver in their delivery of balls and they still came out on top with positive play throughout.

Newcastle 3rds York 1sts

Scottish success: NUSSC continue to impress, earning 34 BUCS points.

Royals hit for eight by Sheffield Men’s Rugby Union



Newcastle could have found themselves in even more early trouble if not for their left winger Matt Blot, who expertly fielded numerous difficult kicks. While much of their close work proved effective, Newcastle encountered difficulty spreading the ball wide, and play became predictable. Complaints of “too slow to the break down” could be heard from the sidelines as Newcastle continued to struggle to find any continuity. Newcastle blindside flanker Pete Alston left his Christian temperament at home as he persistently put his body on the line, but even his heroic efforts could not thwart the dominant away pack. The more physical Sheffield forwards set a steady platform from which their backs could operate throughout the first half and were finally rewarded with a try of their own, giving Sheffield the final say of the half with their third try.

Newcastle had it all to do and numerous substitutions seemed to indicate a change of tactics. As a result, the game evolved into a frantically open affair, with end-to-end breaks a regular occurrence. Sheffield started the second half as they had the first, scoring 12 points without reply. However the hosts appeared to be revitalised by their half time changes, and soon fought back with two tries of their own, courtesy of replacement fly half Sam Blackburn and a forward drive in the corner. With 10 minutes to go, Newcastle were within two scores and optimism rang out amongst the subs bench. However, any hopes of a late comeback were soon extinguished by two successive Sheffield tries. Insult was added to injury with the final try of the game for the away side, giving them a comfortable victory, which they celebrated in style with some kind of post-match hokey-pokey.

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The Thirds impressed from the beginning, showing great teamwork and staying calm and steady throughout, despite a tough opening quarter in which the score difference was at its lowest for the whole of the match. The ball was taken down court swiftly with a great performance by all. The defensive circle made vital interceptions, which secured GK Charlotte Plumtree player of the match. The turnovers provided even more goals to be converted by GS Laura Wilson and GA Tessa Mayo, widening the lead further in the third quarter.

Newcastle 4ths Sheffield 2nds

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A strong start for the Fourths, with both teams level pegging at quarter time, despite Sheffield managing to pull away during the second quarter. Continuing to edge ahead of Newcastle, the scoreline failed to reflect the true nature of the game. Although it was a struggle to pull back such a distanced score line, the girls did not stop applying pressure and kept their morale high throughout the entire match. Christie Burns at GS played exceptionally well with perfect shots from every spot in the circle. Jo Pilkington at C earned player of the match with her decisive drives through centre court and faultless positioning of feeds into the shooters.


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

Sport BUCS


Diane Purvis begins a counter-attack from the back as the Scottish visitors are left reeling, unable to take anything away from their trip south as Newcastle prove too tough for their opponents

Edinburgh can’t try hard enough in first round cup clash at Cochrane

Women’s Rugby

Newcastle 1sts Edinburgh 2nds

68 0

Emma Boyle and Rhian Davies at Cochrane Park Following from their last minute defeat by MMU Cheshire in their previous BUCS match, NWR were more determined than ever to prove their worth in this first round cup match at home against Edinburgh Seconds last week at Cochrane Park.

From the start, it looked as though it was going to be a tough game for both sides as they matched each other’s ability in the opening play. However, it was soon clear that Newcastle were the better team as second row Hannah Rosa drove over the line to score the first try and lead the way for many more from NWR. The forwards’ ability to challenge at rucks and secure the ball meant an excellent try for flanker Helen Martin in her first game of the season after recovering from an ankle injury.

It was the quick hands, pace and footwork of the backs, however, that lead to the abundance of tries for NWR. Full back Diane Purvis amazed with her now infamous footwork and fantastic lines to cross the try line no less than four times by the time the full time whistle blew. Tries were also the name of the game for centres Sophie Bale and Holly Malins, winger Gwen Tibbles and fly half Phoebe Lebrecht, who also did a brilliant job of converting tries to push the score even higher. Yet it was scrum half Sian Mor-

gan’s try which emerged as the most remarkable of the game. Her charge down of an Edinburgh kick proved fruitful as she crossed the try line while a confused and dismayed Edinburgh helplessly looked on. Nevertheless, all credit must be given to Edinburgh who fought hard for the entire game, particularly in the second half when they got within scoring distance of NWR’s try line. NWR held their defence though, and Edinburgh just weren’t able to convert opportunities such as this into tries in the same way

that NWR had done. Newcastle’s recent focus on defence in training certainly paid off as the final result meant a 68–0 defeat for the Edinburgh side. Forward of the match was awarded to Helen Martin, who impressed in her first match this season, whilst Back of the Match and Player of the Match went to a more than deserving Diane Purvis for her spectacular play and incredible try count. A strong performance from the whole team which NWR hope to take forward into their next BUCS match against Durham.

Colville strikes twice but winning streak ends Men’s Hockey

Newcastle 1sts Leeds 2nds

3 4

Callum MacKenzie at Longbenton Newcastle’s run of strong results ended abruptly last week, as they failed to consolidate their position at the top of the table with a close 4-3 defeat to Leeds. The game began with the Royals shading the opening exchanges. Newcastle controlled possession well and pressed the Leeds team into their own half for much of the first ten minutes. The opposition took the lead, however, after winning a dubious short corner; a cleanly struck shot from the top of the circle left Toby Raper powerless to prevent the ball hitting the back of the net. Newcastle were clearly aggrieved by the goal that Leeds had snatched against the run of play and set about levelling the score line. Despite the Royals continued efforts, once again they were in vain as Leeds managed to double their advantage. The ball was hit long to a Leeds forward, who managing to break through into the Newcastle circle, was able to pick out a free teammate, and the ball was coolly slotted home for a 2-0 lead. Newcastle found themselves in real difficulty, facing a two-goal

deficit against a team they had dominated. Eventually the pressure paid as a short corner, destined for the back of the net, struck a Leeds defender, leaving the umpire with no option but to award a penalty stroke. John Colville stepped up and sent the goalkeeper the wrong way, reducing Newcastle’s arrears. The Royals, galvanised by the goal, began to push for the equaliser. Once again after failing with their intended short corner routine, the Royals managed to snatch an equaliser. Colville found himself in possession at the top of the circle and after cutting inside two defenders, struck the ball into the corner of the goal. The Royals would have hoped to take a level score line into the interval but unfortunately another Leeds attack found the Royals wanting at the back, restoring the visitors’ advantage. At half time it was perfectly clear to both teams that the next goal would have a significant bearing in deciding the outcome of the match. Unfortunately for Newcastle, Leeds came out firing and snatched a goal to double their lead. Picking the ball up on the touchline, the Newcastle defence allowed the Leeds striker to pass the ball across the face of the goal, where his strike partner was able to score the simplest of chances. Newcastle pushed to find a goal, but struggled against a team content in putting all eleven men

behind the ball. The Royals managed to snatch a goal with debutant Patrick Brown calmly converting from close range. However it was in vain as Leeds were able to wind down the clock until the full time

whistle. The defeat represented a wake up call for Newcastle, who failed to match the challenged posed by their promotion rivals. The Royals can take hope from the match,

as they walked off the pitch aware that the points could have so easily been theirs. However, they will have to improve in their crunch fixture against Sheffield this week. J. BUSH

Leeds left a defeated Men’s 1st VI at Longbenton last week as their push for promotional takes a step backwards

THE COURIER Monday November 15 2010


BUCS Sport

Magnificent Seven for Royals as four match unbeaten run continues J. BUSH

Men’s Football

Newcastle 1sts York 1sts

7 1

Colin Henrys at Cochrane Park Newcastle’s Men’s First team made it three wins on the run and four games unbeaten this season after storming to a 7-1 home win against stunned visitors York. A hat-trick from centre forward Ben Burt set the Royals on their way to victory, while strike-partner Ed Savitt made it six goals in three BUCS matches by bagging a brace. Dan Clements and Jonny Addey also scored for Newcastle, sending out a clear warning to the rest of the league of their ability and ambition. The match couldn’t have started much better for the home side as they took the lead with just two minutes on the clock. Left-back Paddy Stokle played an inch-perfect pass to put Burt in behind the defence, and the striker rounded the opposition keeper to be left with a simple left-footed finish. At the other end York showed how dangerous they are on the counter attack, as they dissected the home defence to leave their striker one-on-one with Matt Thorpe in the Newcastle goal. Thorpe was quickly off his line however, forcing the striker wide before charging down the shot. After a number of impressive cameo appearances from the bench, Dan Clements was handed his first BUCS start of the season, and he was quickly in the thick of the action, forcing a good low save from the opposition keeper. York snatched an unlikely equaliser shortly after though, as a poor touch from defender Ed Houlton presented the striker with a great opportunity. Thorpe was left with no chance as the 25-yard shot flew over his head and into the net. At 1-1 it looked like it could be anybody’s game. With the York linesman failing to keep up with play, Newcastle were frequently victims of some very dubious offside decisions. Burt had a goal disallowed despite appearing to start his run from a position that was comfortably onside, and eventually the referee had the sense to start over-ruling the linesman. Not a lot of decisions were going the way of the home team though and a horrific looking two-footed

Two Ed Savitt goals in two minutes means that Newcastle are still unbeaten this season as York concede seven goals in a day they will forget at Cochrane challenge did not even merit a free kick, let alone what ought to have been a red card. The Royals also saw a convincing penalty appeal turned down, as the defender appeared to deflect the ball away from Savitt’s industrious run with his hand. Newcastle were dominating possession at this point, and were frequently getting in behind the defence. A second goal arrived shortly afterwards, in near-identical fashion to the first. Stokle’s long-ball released Burt behind the defence and the striker rounded the opposition keeper to make it 2-1. Although half-time curtailed Newcastle’s dominance, they began the second-half much as they had ended, the first and third goal arrived shortly after the restart. George Coyle fed Clements for his second in as many games.

Burt then had a shot saved when one-on-one with the goalkeeper but the keeper could do nothing to prevent his hat-trick arriving, as he could only parry Coyle’s shot straight in to the Newcastle striker’s path to leave him with a simple tap-in. York could not get out of their own half, and two Ed Savitt goals in as many minutes further compounded the opposition’s misery. First a powerful shot found the top corner of the net, before an audacious lob had the keeper picking the ball out if his net again just moments later. The Royals striker could have had a hat-trick of his own too, but a good team move involving Stokle, Swainston and Savitt ended with the latter’s curling left-footed shot saved comfortably. Clements also looked to have added a second of his own when

his powerful shot left the keeper with no chance, only for the ball to cannon back off the crossbar. Newcastle’s seventh did arrive moments later however, as substitutes Elliot Connelly and John Addey combined for the latter to score a much-needed goal of his own. A rare York attack threatened to put a slight dampener on Newcastle’s performance in the closing stages, but Thorpe made a great reflex save with his legs and the Royals nearly added an eighth with the last attack of the match; Swainston’s shot being saved on the line. As full-time confirmed Newcastle’s third high-scoring win in a row – they have now scored sixteen goals in their last three BUCS matches – manager Mark Woodhall was able to reflect on another hugely impressive performance. The jubilant manager told The Courier that his side had “set the

marker down for the rest of the league,” stating that his side’s only aim for the year was promotion. Newcastle’s Second and Third teams also enjoyed victories. The Second team triumphed away at Sheffield Hallam Seconds, winning 2-0 thanks to goals from Mike Peace and Tom Smith. Meanwhile, the Third team beat York 2nds 1-0, with Chris Ritson bagging the only goal.

Mens’ Football Trials <<<

Newcastle Men’s University Football Club is looking for new players. Open trials will take place this Thursday at 19.30 at Longbenton 3G bring shinpads and boots. All welcome to attend.

BUCS Results - 10th November Badminton

Mens 1sts 0-8 Leeds Met 1sts Mens 2nds 0-8 Northumbria 1sts


Mens 1sts 62-56 Manchester 1sts Mens 2nds 40-56 York 1sts Mens 3rds 49-114 Leeds Met 3rds Womens 1sts 64-56 Bradford 1sts


Mens 1sts 134-127 Sheffield 1sts Womens 1sts 135-73 Leeds 1sts


Mens 1sts 7-1 York 1sts Mens 2nds 2-0 Sheffield Hallam 2nds Mens 3rds 1-0 York 2nds Womens 1sts 1-1 Northumbia 2nds


Golf 1s 3-3 Loughborough 1sts Golf 2s 3-3 Leeds Met 2nds


Mens 1sts 3-4 Leeds 2nds Mens 4ths 0-1 Sheffield 3rds Womens 1sts 5-0 Durham 2nds Womens 2nds 0-4 Leeds 2nds Womens 3rds 1- 4 York 1

Women 4ths 3-4 Sunderland


Mens 1sts 6-14 York 1sts Womens 1sts 2-22 Loughborough 1sts Womens 2nds 4-20 Durham 2nds


1sts 13-56 Loughborough 1sts 2nds 42-32 Sheffield Hallam 2nds 3rds 53-25 York 1sts 4ths 22-50 Sheffield 2nds


Mens 2nds 18-33 Manchester 2nds

Mens 3rds 18-46 Sheffield 2nds Mens 4ths 62-0 Sheffield Hallam 3rds Womens 1sts 68-0 Edinburgh 2nds Womens 2nds 5-65 Sheffield Hallam 1sts


Mens 2nds 3-2 Sheffield Hallam Mens 3rds 1-2 Sheffield 2nds Womens 1sts 0-4 Manchester 1sts Womens 2nds 4-0 Newcastle 3rds Womens 4ths 0-4 Newcastle 3rds

Table Tennis

Mens 1sts 3-14 Warwick 1sts Mens 2nds 17-0 Northumbria 2nds


Mens 1sts 4-8 Leeds 2nds Mens 2nds 12-0 York 2nds Womens 1sts 2-10 Leeds Met 2nds Womens 2nds 0-12 Leeds Met 3s


Mens 0-3 Northumbria 1sts Womens 3-0 Chester


Monday November 15 2010 THE COURIER

NWR dominate the Scots Sports Editors: Paul Christian, Jamie Gavin and Tom James -

> Sport, page 42

Sports Editors: Jono Taylor, Wills Robinson and Kat Bannon -

Royals stick to the top Smith hat-trick secures Newcastle Ladies’ five-nil victory over local rivals Durham


After racking up four consecutive wins, the Newcastle Ladies Hockey stars remain firmly undefeated in the BUCS 1A Northern League, and will be full of confidence ahead of this Wednesday’s top of the table clash with Leeds

Ladies’ Hockey

Newcastle 1sts Durham 2nds

5 0

Kat Bannon Sports Editor at Longbenton After defeating Durham 5-0 at Longbenton last Wednesday, Newcastle’s Ladies Firsts only have Leeds University left to beat in order leave the first leg of their league a whitewash. Still unable to overcome the slow first five and last five syndrome, the Royals failed to reach the level of play they are capable of from the first whistle, allowing Durham to take the game into their own hands on Newcastle turf. Regardless of the crippling power with which sixteen yard hit outs were delivered by fresher Nicola Mollison, the away team were able to prevent any long balls from breaking through the middle of the park, forcing Newcastle to work the ball around the back of the pitch. Durham began to see more of the Royals defending quarter than was comfortable for the home side. Vice captain Katie Leitch worked tirelessly to break down play along the right wing, whilst captain Abigail Moreland gave their forwards very little space to manoeuvre in winning block tackles around the edge of the circle. However, moving into the ten minute mark, the Royals were be-

ginning to show signs of the hockey that has given them nine points in three games and a more than impressive eighteen goal difference. Balls from midfield were controlled quickly by forward Jenna Watt, whose individual skill and flair was enough to keep the Durham back four continuously on tentative toes. However the only notable chance came from a first time strike from top ‘D’ by Rebecca Smith after Erika Coakley broke through on the right hand side. A long ball from just over the half way line found fourth year veteran Tutu Ostifodurin on the right wing, whose annihilating pace saw Durham’s right back eating her dust as she gained room to cross the ball to Alicea Berkin on the back post, giving Newcastle a much needed lead. Although ranging in the forty

percent success rate according to captain Moreland, the Royals’ short corner routines were failing to deliver their usual textbook conversions. However, not quite into the final ten, a penalty corner top ‘D’ strike from centre defence Nicola Mollison was rebounded at waist height from the keeper’s pads. Fresher Sophie McClean calmly controlled it in mid air, dribbling it out of reach of a hassling Durham right defence between the penalty spot and top ‘D’, to pass it back to Mollison who swept it bottom right to double the lead. Despite her pre-game whining that she was never going to make the score sheet and still raging from the previous week’s match report, central midfielder Smith dominated throughout, delivering the ball with pace to the Royals’ front three. Found in the ‘D’, her quick

Ladies Hockey 1st Results v Northumbria 1s - 4-3 - WON v Manchester 2s - 10-1 - WON v Sheffield Hallam 1s - 4-0 - WON v Durham 2s - 5-0 - WON Newcastle 1st Leeds 1s Northumbria 1s Durham 2s Manchester 2s Sheff Hallam 1s

W 4 3 2 1 1 0

L 0 1 2 2 3 3

D 0 0 0 1 0 1

Pts 12 9 6 4 3 1

If this standard of play continues, NULHC are guaranteed passage to play-offs for a place in the National League next year

stick skills gave her the room for a reverse stick strike to take two and follow on from last week against Sheffield Hallam. This time it was perfect as her bouncing beauty of a shot nailed the bottom corner, making it two goals for her tally and two fingers to Kat Bannon on the sideline. Watt’s continuous hard work saw her assisting Smith to her second when she worked the ball into the ‘D’ from the right hand side, finding Smith between the penalty spot and top ‘D’, who then winged it into the bottom corner. The opening of the second half saw Newcastle keeping the same driving mentality which characterized the middle of the first half. A tussle in the ‘D’ saw Smith once again at the top of the circle. Improving further on her first goal she nailed the ball into the top right of the net, leaving the Durham goalkeeper’s attempt to save futile. However, even with a five goal lead, Newcastle were yet to reach shallow waters as a frustrated Durham refused to stop fighting. The final twenty of the second half saw numerous heroic saves by Newcastle keeper Emma Peters, her determination accountable as much to trying to keep another clean sheet as preventing a Durham comeback. A Durham short corner saw a praiseworthy save from Peters from a straight strike. Yet Newcastle defence failing to

properly clear the ball gave Durham another chance at goal, as a forward smashed a ball across the ‘D’ which looked destined for the bottom left corner, pulling a spectacular diving stick save from Peters which deflected the ball out of the away team reach. This was not the end of the Durham onslaught, as another great last ditch save from both Peters and defender Alice Hogg was cleared by Leitch to remind Newcastle there were still minutes on the clock. Being shaken by Durham’s battling caused a rough response from Newcastle, as Kate Robertson and Alicea Robertson were presented with questionable green cards due to similarly questionably legal tackles. After regaining composure, the Royals were on the hunt for goals again, seeming sure of a sixth as a perfect line ball from Berkin saw right wing Laura Moore on the baseline. A poor Durham challenge earned Newcastle a short, but saw Nicola Mollison off the pitch after introducing the astro to her stomach lining. The match ended with another save by Peters from a lifted shot which was casually controlled and cleared to make it the last play before the whistle. Facing second-placed Leeds this week, Newcastle are hoping to cement their place at the top of the table and keep well on track for National League promotion.

The Courier 1218  

Monday 15th November 2010

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