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Issue 41 // Friday 18 November 2011
Lifestyle pages 20-21
Change the world?
4National consumer group say S10 gym’s response shows ‘disregard for the law or a complete lack of understanding’
University gym broke contracts Terms a
nditions 7.5 If yo u are un able to u swimmin se g pool, s auna and the rooms or ste the gym due to re am or upgra pairs ding for more tha consecuti n 30 ve days, you will a reason receive able pro -rata cre against y dit our Mon thly Members hip Fee in /Annual following th the comp e month letion of upgrade the or repair .
Nicholas Carding Members of the University’s gym are being urged to challenge its controversial refund system after the swimming pool closed for six months. S10 Health’s 2010-11 contract required the gym to pay a part refund to members in “the month following completion” of any repairs lasting longer than 30 days. But members were not automatically refunded and had to approach the gym for refunds, while a deadline of September 1 2011 was set for claiming the refunds, without telling members.
Rupert Roker, policy manager at Consumer Focus said: “It would appear students have been charged for a service they could not receive. “Failing to honour a contractual obligation to provide a refund suggests either a disregard for the law or a complete lack of understanding. “If the people operating the gym were to talk to one of Sheffield’s law students they would be able to find out why they can’t simply set an arbitrary deadline and refuse to honour their commitments after that time has passed.” Continued on p.3
4Join the campaign for all members to get refunds http://on.fb.me/GymRefunds NEWS
Openness of courts I Can’t Get No Sleep
Protesters settle at the cathedral
World’s media should be barred from trial of Norway killer.
Are you getting your eight hours? p.15
Inside Fuse. Interviews with Mercury Rising and Elizabeth Watts, plus features, reviews and listings from around Sheffield.
Elizabeth Watts Five of the best vampire films Time for Games To Grow Up? Mercury Rising
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FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
Forge in Brief
USE win social media award The University of Sheffield Enterprise (USE) has been awarded Best Business Blog at the 2011 Some Comms Awards. Their blog supplies readers with regular information, entertainment and commentary based on enterprise topics. The awards, which took place at the Manchester Hilton, celebrate the best in UK social media and were attended by over 250 people, including four USE team members.
Physics lecturer in 24-hour science marathon for Children in Need Pudsy love: Physics lecturer Tim Richardson and Children in Need’s cuddly mascot.
Whiskers are the answer for robots in the future Animal-like robots could be developed because whiskers played an important role in evolution, breakthrough work for researchers at the University of Sheffield has found. Researchers found whiskers give an extra sense of touch to mammals, a key part in their evolutionary step from reptiles, which could lead to robots using whiskers as eyes. Lauren Hartley
Sheffield’s WWII Women of Steel honoured with plaque A commemorative plaque in remembrance of Sheffield’s Women of Steel has been unveiled. Four women who worked in the Sheffield steel works during the war revealed the plaque at Barker’s Pool on November 5. Councillor Julie Dore said: “The plaque unveiling was just part of our plans to pay our city’s Women of Steel the respect and honour they deserve.” The council have already raised £28,000 towards a memorial statue.
Emma Robinson A University of Sheffield Physics lecturer has been working around the clock to raise money for Children in Need in a 24-hour science-a-thon of back to back lectures. Tim Richardson, who specialises in nano-science, hosted the lectures on November 17 and 18, teaching students non stop and going the whole 24 hours without sleep. “I’m a terrible sleeper,” said Richardson. “I’m like Margaret Thatcher and sleep only about four hours per night. “I am worried about keeping a reasonably strong voice and not coughing and spluttering too much. I’ve just had a chest infection and asthma, so I am a bit worried about that.” His lectures included the science behind Harry Potter, ‘How Cool Things Work’, astronomy, aliens and how to make ice cream from liquid nitrogen. Richardson said: “The lectures were aimed at a wide range of people. “They were colour coded green, yellow and red for the scientific knowledge they require, so we really did have something for everyone.” Lectures colour coded green were accessible to everyone, while yellow lectures were aimed at university or sixth form science students. More than 400 primary school children also joined in the fun, taking part in their own specially designed lecture with a little help from Pudsey Bear.
Ellie Neves A club night full of purple and penguins will be finishing off Nightline’s annual awareness week. A purple themed night at Space will be the last in a week of activities, including a pub quiz, purple cake sale, and Post Secret - encouraging people to get things off their chest by writing problems on postcards posting anonymously into a purple postbox. Percy the Nightline penguin also made an appearance in the union everyday for photos with
Hydrogen-powered vans trial Two hydrogen-powered vans will be tested in Sheffield this week. The vans will considerably reduce carbon emissions into the air. Councillor Julie Dore said: “ITM’s hydrogen refuelling trial firmly puts the city on the map for testing the latest clean fuel technology.” Emma Robinson
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Penguin Mania hits for Nightline Awareness Week
The lectures, situated in the Hicks Building, offered both tickets and an all-access wristband for all of the lectures. All proceeds will be going to charity, which totalled at £1600 in sponsorship for Tim and his students even before tickets went on sale. “It was originally an idea I had a few years ago but kept quiet,” said Richardson. “Then when Loui asked for something towards Children In Need it just splurted out. Now was the right time for various reasons.” “We all go round thinking we have problems, but there are kids who are ill, there are kids that are in poverty, there are kids getting mistreated - these kids have problems, not us,” said Richardson. “We should all try to do something to help them.” Refreshments and entertainment such as dancing and cake stalls were also on offer to science enthusiasts. The event is only the latest charity fundraiser held by the department, including an annual art exhibition for a different charity. The department have also supported Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice and ASSIST Sheffield with fundraising events.
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University pulls advert over ‘Gaystapo’ article Chris Bollington The University of Sheffield last week withdrew all advertisements from the Church Of England Newspaper following the publication of a controversial article likening gay rights campaigners to Nazis. The paper, one of the oldest news publications in the world, ran a column by Alan Craig, a former east London councillor, that made repeated accusations of Christian prosecution by gay rights campaigners under the banner of equal opportunity and subsequently comparing the campaigners to people who served under Hitler’s regime. He wrote: “Having forcibly – and understandably – rectified the Versailles-type injustices and humiliations foisted on the homosexual community, the UK’s victorious Gaystapo are now on a roll. Their gay-rights stormtroopers take no prisoners as they annex our wider culture, and hotel owners, registrars, magistrates, doctors, counsellors, and foster parents find themselves crushed under the pink jackboot. “Thanks especially to the green light from a permissive New Labour government, the gay Wehrmacht is on its long march through the institutions and has already occupied the Sudetenland social uplands of the Home Office, the educational establishment, and the politically-correct police. Following a plethora of equalities legislation, homosexuals are now protected and privileged by sexual orientation regulations and have achieved legal equality by way of civil partnerships. But it’s only 1938 and Nazi expansionist ambitions are far from sated.” Homosexuals endured appalling treatment and persecution during the Third Reich, where the Gestapo compiled lists of known homosexuals and forced them to conform to the heterosexual norm or else face grave consequences. Under Hitler’s rule, it is estimated that 50,000 gay men were sentenced for their sexuality, with between 5,000 and 15,000
of these being transported to concentration camps. The Guardian picked up on this column and ran an article on the issue entitled “Anglican Newspaper Defends Gaystapo Article”. Reference was made to the fact that up until that point, one of the paper’s main contributors in terms of advertising revenue was the University of Sheffield. The University was quick to act, and by the following day had removed all advertisements from the paper in question. A University spokesman said: “The University of Sheffield is strongly committed to equality and diversity and is proud to be a Stonewall Diversity Champion. We are therefore very disappointed that our advertisement promoting our
Biblical Studies course has been associated with a negative article about gay rights on the Church of England Newspaper website. “The University has no affiliation with the Church of England Newspaper and does not endorse or condone the publication’s content or opinions. “The University placed an advert on the publication’s website for its MA Biblical Studies course in August 2011. “The advert was expected to run until September 2011 and was not meant to be in any way affiliated or associated with any specific article. “The University has been in touch with the publication and asked them to remove the advert from their website immediately.”
Students leave the IC yesterday evening
Confusion as IC closed for ‘Health and Safety reasons’ Eyewitness Miriam Dobson said people felt bewlidered. She said: “There wasn’t the crush you get when the fire alarm goes off. Nobody left their bags or anything.” “People just seemed a bit confused and annoyed.” According to IC staff, there was no water in the building, meaning people had to be evacuated due to health and safety regulations. See Forgetoday.com for the latest news
Nicholas Carding and Alisha Rouse
The University was a leading advertiser on the CofE Newspaper website
The Information Commons (IC) was closed yesterday evening and shut throughout the night. At 16.55, an announcement on the tannoy said: “The IC is closing due to unforeseen circumstances. Collect your belongings and leave immediately.” A second message only minutes later a second message was read out saying: “The IC is closing due to a technical fault.”
Uni refuses to reveal refund figures as consumer group urges fightback Continued from Page One The University refused to give details of how many members were refunded and how much was paid out in full because it would give other gyms an “unfair commercial advantage.” Sports Officer Ben Baldwin said: “As sports officer and a student, it’s really important that the University is open about these things and explains what has happened. “If there was a financial reason behind it, just be honest about it. “As a member I didn’t know about the deadline. It needed to be advertised better. It doesn’t look good on anyone’s side if this wasn’t made clear. “It surprises me that the University are taking so long to be open about it.” S10 Health’s contract for 20102011 stated: “If you are unable to use the swimming pool, sauna and steam rooms or the gym due to repairs or upgrading for more than 30 consecutive days, you
will receive a reasonable prorata credit against your Monthly/ Annual Membership Fee in the month following the completion of the upgrade or repair.” The swimming pool was closed abruptly in November 2010 after it needed urgent refurbishment. Some students who had joined the gym for a year were refunded as little as £15. This included members of the Swimming and Waterpolo club, some of whom had only joined to use the pool. Baldwin said: “The pool closure was tough for everybody, it was bad for clubs, members, and students in general, and it was done very quickly.” “If students don’t feel happy about it, and it’s their money, anything you pay for in life, you expect to get value for money.” The gym is set for refurbishment and will close from December 2011January 2012, but members were told they would not be refunded for this period of closure.
A University of Sheffield spokesman, in an earlier issue of Forge Press, said: “The University will not be issuing refunds for the period of refurbishment during December and January. “We recognise that any disruption is not ideal for members, but to complete a project on the scale we are planning is impossible to do without closing for a period of time.” And despite six months of intensive work on the swimming pool, S10 Health have warned that the pool may be unavailable from April 2012 due to further refurbishment. Roker said: “Any students affected by this issue should contact Consumer Direct either online or by calling 08454 04 05 06.”
Read comment online Hannah Frost attacks Goodwin’s treatment of its members.
N REF O UND S
S10 Health Swimming Pool.
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FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
National Thousands of Sheffield residents news stay trapped in cycle of poverty
Northern Rock sold for £747m
Northern Rock, the bank which was nationalised at the height of the banking crisis, has been sold to Virgin Money for £747m. The bank, which was saved from collapse in 2008, was split into Northern Rock plc and Northern Rock (Asset Management), into which the bank’s “bad debt” was placed. Northern Rock plc will now be known as Virgin Money, which has pledged no compulsory job cuts for three years. The bank currently employs 2,500 people, 3,000 fewer than in 2008.
Photo: Flickr/David Farrer
Airline ‘asked passengers to pay for fuel for journey home’ An airline accused of asking passengers to pay for the plane’s fuel for the rest of the journey has cancelled all UK flights this weekend. Passengers on the Comtel Air flight from Amritsar to Birmingham on Tuesday were asked to pay £23,000 after it was grounded in Vienna. Comtel shareholder Bhupinder Kandra said passengers’ money, which was given to travel agents, had not been given to the airline. Several hundred passengers are thought to be affected by the cancelled flights.
Hamilton Jones Up to 40,000 Sheffield residents may be trapped in poverty as a result of loan sharks and money lenders, claim two researchers from the University of Sheffield. Professor Paul Mosley’s and Dr Pamela Lenton’s latest publication claims that since the recession hit in 2007, thousands of households in Sheffield have been forced to borrow money from ‘payday loan’ companies to battle day-today financial crises. High APR rates, however, often leave customers worse off than before, facing hundreds and potentially thousands of pounds worth of debt that quickly spirals out of control. Many customers are unsure of how to escape the vicious circle of debt and are left trapped in poverty. Professor Mosley, who specialises in Economic Development, said: “While a £500 loan from one of these companies might cost an additional £400 in interest, a similar loan from a community development financial institution would cost just £80 or £90.” The book published
by Professor Mosley and Dr Lenton, entitled ‘Financial Exclusion and the Poverty Trap, Overcoming Deprivation in the Inner City’, looks into alternatives to high interest pay-day loan companies called community development financial institutions (CDFIs). CDFIs offer much lower interest rates for people struggling with money and with low financial security. The professors’ research suggests that CDFIs have helped thousands of people nationally to escape and avoid high rates of interest from money lenders - and could be the answer to helping thousands more. Mosley believes that CDFIs have helped the majority of their clients to survive the recent financial crisis, and aided some in the struggle to move out of poverty. In other areas, the book explores how the debt trap has caused the living standards of its victims to fall, especially those on welfare benefits. The work also points to poor finance as a cause of the riots that took place in many cities across the country this summer.
Many have struggled to survive financially since the recession.
Top National award for Sheffield Tramlines festival
Office water coolers to be used as anti-terrorist weapons
Blunkett in guns crackdown Lucy Attenborough David Blunkett, the MP for Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough, has called for a crackdown on youths carrying guns and knives. The former Home Secretary expressed his concerns after the death of Sheffield Hallam student, Deeq Ali, 18, from Burngreave, who was shot dead on October 30. He said that he feared that the number of fatalities on Sheffield’s streets will increase. Mr Blunkett is hoping to utilise a £10 million funding pot
Man who used car as weapon in teenage death given life sentence Josh Middleton
The Tramlines festival takes place every summer. Katie Davies
Office water coolers are being trialled as weapons which could be used to deal with hostage situations or terrorist threats. The coolers have been fired out of cannons into buildings at high speed by Cardiff-based BCB International, who specialise in military equipment. The Wall Breaker fires the coolers at 300m a second and is already being exported to military and security forces worldwide.
in order to tackle problem areas. Neighbourhoods such as Burngreave, Darnell and Pitsmoor, which are often troubled by gang-related violence, are looking to benefit from the scheme. Several deaths are now thought to be part of rising racial tensions between different communities in the city, particularly Bengali and Somali youths. Last October, a report published into Sheffield gangs, revealed that guns were easy to get hold of for those in the know.
Sheffield’s free music festival has won a top national award. Tramlines was awarded the title of Best UK Metropolitan Festival at a ceremony in London held by the UK Festival awards. The category aims to honour festivals who use existing venues in a host city or town. The Tramlines team swiped the award from Camden Crawl, who have been crowned winners for the past two years. Category winners are chosen both by the public, voting online, and music industry experts. Now in it’s fourth year, the latest festival in July attracted crowds of more than 150,000 over four times as many as when
Photo: Tim Dennell
Tramlines first appeared in 2009. Organisers say that they want the festival to showcase Sheffield music to the world. Sam Nulty, Tramiline’s festival director said: “We’re already working on next year’s festival and hope it will be just as successful.” The festival is held in 70 venues, clubs and pubs across the city, including the University of Sheffield. Last year’s headliners included Pixie Lott and Los Campesinos! Jim Drury, of UK Festival awards said: “It’s a great achievement to win this award in such a short space of time and it is a testament to the hard work of everyone involved.”
The driver of a car which caused a road sign to fall on and kill a Sheffield Hallam student has been found guilty of manslaughter. Aminur Rahman was sentenced to eight years in a Young Offenders Institute after Abdulla Mohamed, an 18-year old engineering student, was killed in Darnall in March this year. Rahman was encouraged to intimidate Mohamed and another Somalian youth by two of his passengers, Sheffield Crown Court heard. He drove on to the pavement to scare the youths, but hit a road sign which subsequently fell on Mohamad. The incident is believed to be part of rising tensions between Bengali and Somali gangs in the area, with local residents in Darnell describing the
disturbances as “turning the usually quiet neighbourhood into a warzone.” Rahman’s passengers, Mohamed Kahar, 20, and Nizamul Hoque, 19, were also on trial with Rahman. Kahar was acquitted, while Hoque sentenced to 22 months in prison for violent disorder. Rahman denied that he had been looking for trouble, instead expressing guilt at what had happened. Mohamad was described by friends and family as having much potential, and was a key part of a community support programme running activities for local youths.
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Occupy protesters set up camp outside Sheffield Cathedral Ben Mackay Anti-capitalist protesters have pitched tents outside Sheffield Cathedral as part of the worldwide Occupy movement. The protest comes amid growing unease about the state of the world economy. Occupy protesters describe themselves as representing ‘the 99 per cent’, protesting against public sector cuts and growing inequality. Around 20 tents are currently pitched at the Church Street site, along with a campfire and cooking facilities. Occupy’s statement says: “We need alternatives. This is where we work towards them.” Although the Occupy movement has been criticised for failing to articulate what their alternatives are, members of the movement said that the protest is about sparking a discussion. Campaigning veteran Leslie, 66, described the Occupation as a dissenting, rebellious presence that galvanises the public’s imaginations about how to create a society with real social justice. Sheffield Cathedral has not given the occupation permission, but has said it respects the protesters’ right to make their voice heard. The occupation say that they are protesting outside the Cathedral as it is more difficult to remove them. They are also close to many of the city’s banks and prestigious hospitality venue Cutler’s Hall.
World NEWS New York Occupy clash with cops over Stock Exchange walk Scuffles broke out in New York yesterday as hundreds of Occupy Wall Street protesters tried to march on the New York Stock Exchange. Police made several arrests and barricaded junctions on the edge of the city’s financial district. Protests are planned across several major US cities as the Occupation movement reaches the end of its second month. New York city officials say they fear the demonstration could assemble up to tens of thousands of protesters.
Pope in ‘offensive’ kiss picture Officials in the Vatican say they will take legal action over the use of an advert in which Pope Benedict is pictured kissing a leading imam. The advert was part of Italian clothing company Bennettons advertising campaign, who have subsequently withdrawn the ad. The Vatican statement said the ad was “damaging to not only to dignity of the pope and the Catholic Church but also to the feelings of believers”. They have instructed lawyers to “take the proper legal measures” to stop the use of the photo, even in the media.
Around 20 tents have been set up at the Church Street site outside Sheffield Cathedral
Photo: Mark McKay
Hallam student faces extradition in online TV trial Nicholas Carding A Sheffield Hallam student is facing extradition to the USA after being accused of copyright infringement. Richard O’Dwyer ran the website TVShack.net, which posted links to pirated TV shows and films. UK authorities have dropped the case against O’Dwyer, but the US government has issued an extradition warrant for him to face charges where he could be given five years imprisonment. Whilst TVShack.net never supplied the content, merely posting links, the US authorities claim that the site breached their copyright laws and, as the advertising was aimed at US consumers, he should be tried on US soil. O’Dwyer, of Shoreham Street, Sheffield, is said to have made more than $230,000 in advertising revenues from the site. In an extradition hearing at Westminster Magistrates’ court, O’Dwyer’s lawyer, Ben Cooper, said a similar case relating to the TV-Links.co.uk website supported their case. He said: “His website linked to
Behind the story Nicholas Carding The Richard O’Dwyer case highlights several problems within both copyright law and the extradition treaty between
TVShack was part of the huge online piracy industry Photo: Katie Davies other websites in the same way Google and Yahoo operate. “You were not able to view a film from TVShack directly. “TVShack did not charge a subscription, in the same way Google and Yahoo don’t. It generated income from advertising, just as Google does.”
John Jones, for the US Government, told the court: “TVShack had the top films listed on the home page, so it wasn’t merely a search engine.” The case has been adjourned until November 22, until which time O’Dwyer has been released on conditional bail.
the UK and US. It is easy to understand the O’Dwyer familiy’s bewilderment, as the UK prosecution have dropped their case against him, and his alleged crime was committed when he was in England. If O’Dwyer is extradited to the US, where he could be sentenced to a long spell in jail it would
spark a national campaign for parliament to debate the treaty. Then there is the problem with the crime he is accused of. Most of today’s younger generation will either have downloaded music or films illegally, or know someone who has. It is unfortunate for O’Dwyer that his case has been selected to
O’Dwyer’s mother Julia told the Yorkshire Post: “If people are committing a crime in England, they should be tried in this country. Is extradition proportional to the alleged crime? I don’t think it is.” The US-UK extradition treaty, once branded “lopsided” in favour of US citizens by Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg, was the subject of a recent review by retired Judge Sir Scott Baker. Sir Scott found the treaty to be “balanced and fair” and said it was not biased against Britons, according to the Yorkshire Post. Despite this, it is possible for the US to extradite UK citizens who live and work in the UK if they commit a US crime in the UK, without it being reciprocal. Internet hacker Gary McKinnon faces 60 years in jail if extradited to US.
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set an example of the hazards of engaging in internet piracy. For the moment, piracy remains theft although sadly for O’Dwyer he is being made a scapegoat for the same crime millions of people commit every day all over the world.
Antarctica’s ‘alps’ secret discovered in science scoop Scientists have discovered how a mountain range as big as the Alps lying under a ice in Antarctica, came to exist. The Gamburtsevs were found in the 1950s and was a major surprise as most scientists believed only flat rock was buried beneath the ice. But recently it emerged that the range formed over a billion years ago, and is an important discovery as they are thought to be the location where the ice sheet we know today initiated its march across Antarctica.
China: ‘Mugabe is ‘old friend’ China’s vice-minister Xi Jinping has welcomed Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe as “an old friend” after they held talks in Beijing. Jinping hailed the 87-year old as “a famed leader of the national liberation movement in Africa,” and said: “China is willing to join hands with Zimbabwe, enhance friendly exchanges, and expand practical co-operation.”
Mugabe. Photo: Flickr/Al Jazeera
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FORGEIN BRIEF Olympic torch to spend two days in South Yorkshire
Bummit students get behind local charities in Glasgow hike
The Olympic torch will be visiting 19 places in South Yorkshire over two days in 2012. Arriving in the Barnsley village of Lundwood on June 25, the Olympic torch relay will continue through to Sheffield, where celebrations will be held. The next day, the procession will go through Rotherham and Doncaster, eventually leaving South Yorkshire via Hatfield. Barnsley’s Olympic high jump hopeful Adele Lassu said: “It’s a massive community thing. Everybody gets excited about the torch relay. That’s just as exciting to me as what it would be to compete.” Councillor Julie Dore, leader of Sheffield City Council, expressed her excitement, adding: “Sheffield is a great sporting city.” Dan Meier Photos: Bummit
Union backs university application changes
Nicholas Carding Students from the University of Sheffield hitched their way to Glasgow last week through the annual Baby Bummit event. Participants had a £10 budget, but many of the students managed to get to their destination without spending any money. Fourth year Hispanic student Eleanor Woodman said: “Baby Bummit was a frustrating yet euphoric experience. “The lows of being stuck in Manchester for five hours was made up for whenever we managed to get a lift. “I am definitely up for doing the big one (Bummit) to Bulgaria, but I hope we don’t end up in the middle of a bunch of sheep like we did in Penrith.” Each of the 175 participants had to raise a minimum of £65 for the event, generating an expected total of roughly £12,000. Approximately 85 per cent of the money raised goes to local charities. This year, Baby Bummit will be supporting two local
The University of Sheffield Students’ Union has praised proposed changes to the university admissions process. Currently, students make applications based on predicted grades. Under the proposed system, students would receive their A-Level results before applying to universities. Education Officer Jon Narcross said: “The current system has been proven to be inaccurate. We need a system which sets a level playing field and gets students into the right institutions.” Rob Dillon
Route into city centre closed for five weeks after landslip Glossop Road businesses fear a drop in trade as the road is closed for five weeks from today. Repairs will be carried out to the road after it was damaged by a landslip which caused a wall to collapse. Last month’s landslip, which took place near King Edward VII Upper School, covered half the road in rubble and a oneway system has been in place for traffic. Glossop Road is commonly used by students, and although pedestrians can still access the road cars and buses will be diverted. Students can check the Travel South Yorkshire website for updated bus timetables. Amber De La Haye
£100m China Park to be built The world’s first Chinese cultural theme park is set to be built in South Yorkshire. The £100m Visions of China project, which will include rollercoaster rides, Oriental lakes and gardens and a children’s fantasy land, could be built within 18 months. Visions of China Chief Executive Peter Moore said: “I believe it will be, no doubt, one of the most exciting projects British tourism will have seen for decades.” David Parker
Graduate gasses himself to death with deadly mixture Katie Davies A University of Sheffield chemistry graduate died after concocting a mixture of chemicals to take his own life, an inquest heard. Brian Jackson, 30, died after inhaling the toxic fumes he created himself in his bedroom at Holland Place, Highfield. Jackson, who was found by his housemate, had erected a small tent in his room. Later, his body was found inside with the bucket of toxic chemicals. The materials used to create the poison were also found at the scene. They were removed by the emergency services in protective suits and nearby houses were evacuated. The inquest heard that the chemical would have affected Brian’s breathing, leading to immediate collapse and death within a few minutes from Forensic scientist John
Slaughter. Jackson, who worked for a Rotherham cleaning company, had a history of mental health problems. The inquest, presided over by Asst. Deputy Coroner Professor Robert Forrest, heard Jackson was often upset due to lack of contact with his daughter.
charities: Sheffield Women’s Aid, who provide safe and secure accommodation for women, children and young people who have suffered from abuse at home and StopGap, a night shelter scheme for potential rough sleepers in Sheffield city centre. Further afield, money will also be given to JAM, a charity based in Glasgow providing relief and sustainable development in Africa, Madeleine Whitehead, Chair of the Bummit Committee, said: “Bummit is simply unique and no two teams ever have the same journey. Of course, there are inevitable lows when you think that you’ve reached a horrific hitching spot - but these lows are outweighed by the satisfaction you get when reaching your destination and sharing your tales with 349 other participants. “There is no feeling like it.” The event is billed as a warmup before the main Bummit event just before the Easter Holidays where students will hitch-hike to Sofia, Bulgaria.
Strong police presence for ‘Cuts are Still Nuts’ Matthew Brown Around 2,000 students marched through London last Wednesday to protest against the government’s cuts to higher education. Around 4,000 police officers were on duty after last years’ national student demonstrations, which resulted in a breakaway group storming the Conservative Party’s headquarters at Millbank. This year a group of protesters broke away from the main route to Trafalgar Square, where a campsite was set up next to Nelson’s Column in an attempt to emulate the St Paul’s occupation. But protesters were warned that police would arrest them if they didn’t move from Trafalgar Square, and minor scuffles broke out as some refused to move from their tents. The University of Sheffield took 45 students to the protest.
The march ended close to St Paul’s Cathedral, by the London Wall, watched by a large police presence. Students’ Union Education Officer Jon Narcross said: “The protest itself went really well, there was a good focus on the issues. “Last year’s demo was about fees, but this one was about more than fees, it was about the White Paper and education cuts that will be detrimental to higher education. “What the government is doing is massively decreasing access to higher education and stopping it being available to people from all backgrounds.”
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Council Chair: ‘Boycott Sun over Hillsborough’
Council Chair Sam Mannion wants The Sun banned from sale in the Students’ Union shop. Photo: David Parker Alex Chafey The Sun newspaper could be banned from sale in the Union Shop because of its coverage of the 1989 Hillsborough disaster. Chair of the Union Council, Sam Mannion, proposed that council pass the ban without a referendum, although he admitted he would be happy to see students vote on the issue. Mannion said: “We are a values-led organisation, we see that through, for example, the Nestlé boycott. “This is a personal issue for me, I can admit that.” The proposal was met with opposition from many of the councillors. Journalism Councillor Tom Donnelly said: “Banning The Sun would be a totalitarian act of censorship, and given the fact that newspapers are course texts for Journalism students, The Sun should not be banned from the Union Shop.”
Sports Officer Ben Baldwin said: “This proposed boycott would impede on students’ right to choice. “If we start banning newspapers based on bad journalism, we will have to ban a few more tabloids.” Following the Hillsborough Stadium disaster in which 96 people died due to overcrowding, The Sun published an edition entitled “The Truth” which blamed the tragedy on drunk Liverpool fans. The majority of councillors voted against the proposal leaving Mannion unsure of whether or not to continue with the motion. Circulation has significantly decreased in Merseyside since the edition was published. However, Mannion may not be able to campaign fully for his proposal due to his role within Union Council. Mannion said: “Given that I put this forward before I was elected Chair of Union Council, I had a lot more freedom to do it
then, but now I’m Chair I’m not sure how appropriate it would be to continue lobbying for it within council.” The proposal reads: “We would be fully justified in joining with the many people who refuse to purchase, and the many newsagents who refuse to stock, on principle, The Sun newspaper. “It appears that the government has now committed to releasing the full Cabinet papers around the time of the disaster, which should hopefully lead to justice for the 96 and their families (22 years too late).”
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Two votes for dual students backed by Union Council Rob Dillon and Nicholas Carding Students who study a dual degree may be able to vote for two candidates in Union Council elections after Poppy Nobes, the Councillor for English Literature and Theatre, proposed to change the current voting system. Complaints rose substantially after joint honours students found themselves only able to vote for a representative in one of their departments. Nobes said: “I feel everyone has the right to vote for each of the departments they study in. “Many students spend an equal amount of time in more than one department, and it’s not only dual language students. “I feel that these changes will make the voting system much more democratic, giving students a greater voice in the election process. “ Nobes’ proposal was passed to the constitution committee who will look at the proposal in detail and draw up an initial policy to present to council in a few weeks. Nobes said: “I am extremely hopeful that this will be passed by council without having to wait for a referendum in March. The vote went very much in the favour of change at the meeting so I am hoping that this support
will continue. “Due to the vastly different arrangements to many of the subjects, it is difficult to determine exactly how this change will work at this point, especially regarding language students. “However, the Constitution Committee should make it clear within the near future and I am confident they will make the right choices.” Education Officer Jon Narcross said: “Many students take dual degrees across different departments and allowing them a vote in both Union Council elections is a positive step forward. We can’t expect students to actively engage in our democratic structures if we tell them they can have their say in one of their departments but not the other, effectively granting them a voice in how they’re represented in only half of their course.”
Photo: SU Website
Last pitch refurbished at Goodwin Sports Centre Nicholas Carding The refurbished Bramley (formerly rubber crumb) pitch has been opened at Goodwin Sports Centre. The pitch is used for Intra Mural six and 11-a-side football as well as providing training facilities for the university’s Rugby Club. Badgers and bad weather had caused the pitch refurbishment to be severely delayed, forcing the rugby club to train at 7am at Ponderosa Park. The start to the 11-a-side Intra Mural season was also delayed by a month as a result of the refurbishments. Pitches have have been laid using a range of Desso Sport Systems which are used at top European football clubs such as Real Madrid, Liverpool, Tottenham Hotspur, Chelsea
and Arsenal. Sports Officer Ben Baldwin said: “I’m very excited, the pitch looks really good, and I’m very excited to get on it myself. “I think people are paying a lot of money to go to university, and the university wants to make sure students are getting value for money.” All Intra Mural matches had previously been held on the top pitches, where the surface is more suitable for Hockey. The opening of the pitch means the Intra Mural 11-a-side football league can start, a month later than first scheduled. Despite the delays, teams will still play the same amount of games, Sport Sheffield say. In addition to the football pitch, a new rugby training zone has been installed, which will be available to University Performance clubs.
Silence on campus for our armed forces Olivia Adams The University of Sheffield’s Students’ Union came to a standstill as people across the country stood silent for two minutes in remembrance on Armistice Day. Students and staff gathered at 11.00am on the concourse in front of the main entrance to the Students’ Union building, to honour servicemen, women, and all civilians who have died since the Great War. Sheffield members of the Yorkshire Universities Air Squadron led and organised the event, beginning a weekend of remembrance services. Members of all three services
helped to sell poppies on campus. Officer Cadet Harry Boldock, organiser of the Armistice Day Parade, said: “We commend the people who come out and take the time to stop what they are doing. “We especially commend the international students who recognise and respect this important day. “It is difficult to organise the parade because all the three services have different drills, but this year was our biggest parade, and we had all three services involved.” Senior student of Yorkshire
University Air Squadron Duncan Scutt added: “The day is always very poignant for us. Personally knowing people who have died in previous wars and are still dying now makes the anniversary so significant.” Armistice Day, which is marked on November 11 every year, is the day when people across the UK remember those who have died for Britain in war past and present. The anniversary remembers all those who have died in wars since the Great War including World War Two, the Falklands War and the Gulf War.
Members of all three services led tributes to fallen soldiers in all wars.
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Protesting in an engaging A sustainable system is and musical way needed for student loans Dear Forge Press,
Tom Geddes displays his ignorance in his comment section on the Careers Fair protest. Firstly, the actions were not specifically anticapitalist. There were various groups involved, as the article points out, and I speak as an individual participant, not as a representative of any of these, opposing companies such as BAE and Thales, who manufacture arms and sell them to the organs of oppression and murder. Various people were raising awareness about this, and also opposing RBS, who since being bailed out by the taxpayer have invested $2.7bn in the Tar Sands in Canada, a project which is a catastrophe for local communities and for the environment. On the day we met many students who were interested to know about these issues, and the campaign highlighted for people who had been encouraged to work for these companies, the
dealings the companies themselves keep behind closed boardroom doors, and cover in whitewash. Geddes is all too keen to classify the actions at the careers fair as disruptive, rather than civilised. Is he suggesting that it is more ‘civilised’ to let these companies literally get away with murder? To accept the University’s partnership with them, rather than, yes, disrupt their transactions (in an engaging and musical way, I might add?) Does Geddes see it as too optimistic a goal to get the university to work with more ethical companies? For instance with companies involved with green technology, not to push more ethical organizations into a smaller, less wellknown job fair, not to bank with banks that have a stake in environmentally and socially destructive projects. Or does he think that protestors were in some way (given his earlier comment about anticapitalism) trying to stop the arms trade or put a halt
to the Tar Sands altogether, in which case if we stay civilized, in other words non-radical, optimism is indeed all we have. (Being at a disadvantage in lacking personal PR agents or private security guards to convince the world of their roguishness and then kick ‘em out and make sure they don’t come back next year.) On another note, Geddes commented that without regulations on free speech “we’ll descend into a state of anarchy”. I would point out that it is the absence of a government that would put us in a state of anarchy, not lack of regulations on speech. It is possible to conceive of a state of affairs in which there were regulations on speech and yet no political authority, such as a community of anarchists who had decided amongst themselves to not tolerate racism or sexism, for example.
Dear Forge Press,
Polly Burton 1st Year Russian and Philosphy
Dear Forge Press,
I am somewhat flattered if not bewildered to discover that Mr Blomfield has mistaken me for an elected representative who forms policy rather than the chair of a youth political organization. It seems the MP for Sheffield Central has forgotten about the manifesto he stood on last year, which his leader wrote, that said it would support the findings of the Browne Review. His party set up the Browne Review in 2009 which called for removal of the cap altogether. Thanks to Liberal Democrats, there is still a cap, albeit higher than £3000 per annum. Labour’s recent proposal to reduce the cap to £6000 is a damp squib. It does not help poorer graduates, it
only helps richer graduates, as shown by research done by Martin Lewis, of moneysavingexpert.com, and by CentreForum. This also shows how the Labour party have now accepted the improvements to the new repayment system, being a higher repayment threshold, the poor pay less than they currently would, part time students for the first time ever don’t have to pay up front, so now no student has to pay up front for Higher Education, student loans won’t go on credit files, richer graduates will be fined for repaying early, and after 30 years the remaining debt is wiped. In 2004, the Higher Education Minister at the time, Alan Johnson, considered a graduate tax. He found it was
unworkable and a bad deal for universities (there is large gap between spending the money and getting it back). The then Labour Government introduced tuition fees, despite their pledge in the 2001 General Election not to and following breaking a similar pledge in 1997 about top up fees - and they were governing majority. Labour are in no position to lecture others in keeping promises. Everyone knows that the majority of student debt isn’t from tuition fees, but from student loans. I hope all parties will work together to achieve a more sustainable and better system for student loans. Yours sincerely, Andrew Tromans Chair of Sheffield Liberal Youth
Protest wasn’t violent In your last edition, Tom Geddes wrote such a scathing ‘comment’ on the recent anti-arms company protest at the Careers Fair that I felt, as a participant in that protest, I needed to respond. To start with, by referring to it as an “anti-capitalist” protest he completely twisted our aims to suit a narrative currently in the news at the moment. The protest was about the University’s decision to invite both BAE Systems and Thales to the Fair despite their heavy involvement in
arms manufacturing and trading. It seems tenuous at best to describe a call for arms companies not to be invited to advertise for student placements as a campaign for the break-up of the current financial system. Secondly, by referring to the protest as “disruptive,” and comparing it to the violence of the Milibank tuition fees protest last year, shows a complete distortion of the facts. We were looking to peacefully raise awareness within the event which, as Sheffield students, we were entitled to attend. The only violent intent I
saw was when a security guard rugby-tackled someone trying to enter the building. I would agree with Tom Geddes that there is a limit to protest, like throwing a fire extinguisher off a building, but I fail to see how singing a Bob Dylan song, popping some balloons and peacefully informing students (not intimidating, as the University claimed) of an issue that we care about crosses that boundary. Yours sincerely, Phil Armitage Second Year Politics and Philosophy.
Your comments on www.forgetoday.com to: Album Review: The Wanted – Battleground
‘You have no idea what your talking about, 3/10 Seriously the nonsense you’ve gone on about is ridiculous. If you hate The Wanted so much, why bother listening to their music or writing a review? If they bring happiness and joy to teenage girls across the country then let them. At least they are making a career that doesn’t involve slating others just because they are not you’re cup of tea. My advice is: Don’t drink the tea.’ Signed, Mrs Hawthorn ‘Love this review. I bought the album, not because I’m completely in love with the band or the brand, but just because the music is easy to listen to and no real thought has to go into listening to it. It’s really hard nowadays
to actually find artists that are brilliant, both musically and technically. Most bands around now are all about the brand, and when you actually listen to the lyrics or the music then you find that they are pointless and meaningless. What Sam has done is not slate or throw mass hatred at the band, in fact he reasonably argues that bands are only actually as popular as they are due to the hype around their image. Yes, they have reasonably good voices, but they’re all the same, and have no substance to their music. I think the worst thing about the album is the title: ‘Battleground’. This creates the impression that the album is going to be heartfelt and emotional, when all it really is commercial and consumerbased nonsense and only
made to create money. Like I said in my first paragraph, the only reason i bought the album, was not because I think its amazing or that the album is lyrically brilliant, but because its just easy to listen to.’ Jess ‘I understand people have opinions but I know many who actually like The Wanted. They are five young lads, of course not many lyrics will be heartfelt as they haven’t been through many experiences. I just think that it is rather harsh that this album has been given 3/10 when it’s only their second album. I also think it’s great they’ve written the majority of the songs.’ Sharon (US)
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As Muslims Against Crusades have their Remembrance Day protests cut short, Forge Press asks should free speech be regulated?
The freedom of speech is a vital right to teach oddballs and extremists. The Muslim Council of Rachel Britain openly denounced Gerrish the group, stating: “While this handful of people Fury spread across the claim to speak for Muslims, nation this time last year many more will join fellow when ‘Muslims Against Britons in remembering Crusades’ burnt poppies the sacrifice of our armed on Remembrance Day and forces.” The freedom of speech chanted “British troops are murderers” during the and the right to protest is two-minute silence; any central to our democracy affiliation with the group and society. Without free has since been banned, but discussion of opinion, there it is still a human right to be can’t be progress in science, law or politics. able to protest peacefully. If you can’t discuss While it is easy to look upon these events and feel opinion and occasionally riled by this “disgusting” challenge the accepted act, we need to remember way of thinking, we’d still that every society has its believe that the Earth was flat and that black and white people should catch separate buses. It is for this reason that the Occupy movement has spread globally: 92 cities across 83 countries have staged protests about economic and social inequality, gaining support from world leaders including Barack Obama. Arguably, it is the combination of our society’s morals and the law surrounding our freedom of speech and right to protest that is important. That is what makes these protests so effective. The world hasn’t descended into revolution. Cities are not being ravaged by violence and Photo: David Shankbone/Flickr looting because our moral
compass tells us that protesters, particuarly at Occupies across the world, are protesting for a just cause, and they are adhering to the law by protesting peacefully. However, there will always be those who push the boundaries of convention further than they should, such as Muslims Against Crusades. In a year of extraordinary revolutions and political uprisings this mood for change has also affected Britain. After student protests turned to violence a year ago and mob mentality raged across London in the summer, are we as young people now seen as the extremists? Students peacefully protesting about the rise in university tuition fees were warned by police last week with plastic bullets; it is the minority of past violent protesters who have tarred us all with the same brush. We can see how the law and morals go hand in hand, and when they work together, they produce a fair and democratic society. But in these tough times, we have seen worldwide how the morality of the public is beginning to shift for them to be able to justify some of their actions to get this equality. So perhaps it is not the laws surrounding our freedom of speech and right to protest that need to be questioned in this time of uncertainty – it is our own individual morality.
It is neccessary to silence offensive acts of violence Fay Guest
Hooray for Theresa May. I must be the only person in the country saying that about now, what with her dodgy border controls and the like. But her dubious approach to incoming terrorists aside, she has actually come up trumps. By banning Muslims Against Crusades, she put forward a victory for common sense, and common decency. Muslims Against Crusades, you may remember, were planning protests on Armistice Day, and on Remembrance Sunday. They were the same people who last year burnt poppies in central London. Freedom of speech, and freedom to protest is all very well, and I am not in any way saying that anyone should not be allowed to freely express themselves. However, you lose your right to protest and speak freely when the protest is likely to descend into violence and disorder, endangering lives, and when what you are protesting about is frankly, none of your damn business. Remembrance Sunday and Armistice Day are national events, observed by the majority of people in this country. It is for those who died in service of us, and for those who mourn the soldiers still dying in our name. If a person, however, does
not wish to observe this, they don’t have to. Stay away from the services, don’t wear a poppy. Don’t stand and be silent at 11am. To protest and burn poppies is downright offensive. The act of observing Remembrance Day and Armistice Day is not a political act. It is a time of quiet reflection and respect, and for grief. To brandish a plaque stating “British soldiers burn in hell” in front of a war widow isn’t exercising free speech. It’s horrifying. In doing this, they turn what is both a private and a national grief into something political, not only disrespecting everyone who grieves for our war dead, but the dead themselves. Free speech is a privilege, that other countries are denied. It seems unbelievable and despicable that it would be abused in this way, when it seems that the Muslims Against Crusades protests were carried out deliberately to cause a disturbance. We supposedly live in a tolerant society: from our school days we are taught to respect each other, particularly when it comes to religion, race or beliefs. Because to do otherwise would
As you make your way across the otherwisedelightful Students’ Union concourse, it is inevitable that your journey will be hijacked by people with more flyers than sense, thrusting brightly-coloured leaflets in your direction. They’re emblazoned with scantily clad, overly-made-up females who look like they’re trying a little bit too hard to have a good time. During my research for this article, I ventured onto the concourse during that chaotic ten minute window between lectures; risking life, limb and paper cuts. I had seven flyers thrust into my hands in as many seconds. Compared to some of the student-targeted nightclub flyers I have seen - remember the cheeky sexual harassment Corporation leaflet? - this wasn’t a bad bunch. The club which is holding a Halloween night where punters are expected to dress as dead celebrities successfully pushes the boundaries of common decency even
further than Replica’s “Get Laid” flyer that was flying around in early October. The dead celebrity concept would be slightly less offensive if the leaflet didn’t include a photo of Amy Winehouse, upon whose grave the dust has yet to settle. However, the only thing more offensive than the content of these leaflets, is their seizure-inducing colour schemes which are almost as harmful to the brain as the amount of elephant-tranquiliser-quality vodka you have to consume to enjoy these clubs.
‘I ventured onto the concourse between lectures; risking life, limb and paper cuts’
However, the flyer that bemused me most was one for a club night called “Let’s get Supersonic Vague”. Aside from the fact that speeds greater than sound would probably hinder, not enhance, one’s enjoyment of a nightclub, it’s hard to see how a lack of specificity is a selling point either. Another problem with the number of
flyer distributers is that they stifle students doing good studenty things like raising money for charity or promoting a political cause. Political campaigning on the concourse is a brilliant display of student engagement, but the number of times I’ve almost asked someone with a petition against the cuts what time they’re open until, or someone from RAG how much their Jaegerbombs are, goes beyond reckoning. And it’s impossible to consider the impact of flyering on the concourse without mentioning the environmental impact. The number of glossy, psychedelic leaflets being trampled under-foot reflects badly on our university for passers-by, and current and potential students. But more than this, a mighty tree has spent decades growing, converting the energy of the sun into food, drawing its nutrients from the ground, and cleaning the air so we can all continue to breathe. It provided a home to, perhaps, a wise old owl or a disgruntled squirrel, but was felled in order to bring the likes of you and I the valuable information that someone off The Only Way is Essex will be making a live appearance at a club full of jeering
World’s media will destroy chance of justice for Norway
upset people, who have beliefs and values which they hold very dear. To allow anyone to undermine things that are so important to others in such an extreme way is entirely wrong. I am all for common sense, and very often political correctness goes too far. In this case, common sense is telling me that in no way is Muslims Against Crusades’ idea of protesting justified. They make a mockery of the country in which they live, and of the people who have served it. Anyone watching the veterans march past the Cenotaph on Remembrance Sunday cannot fail to feel appalled by anyone trying to undermine them.
The case of Norway’s Andrers Behring Breivik is controversially to be opened to the grieving public.
Flyering high: the plane crash that is our concourse
morons. But it needn’t be this way. There are techniques to avoid being leafleted. Pretending to listen to music, looking like you’re in a hurry or texting are the obvious ones, but having your hands full or cycling can also be effective. Another option is carrying a briefcase, as they assume you’re not the kind of person to go to a nightclub. But my personal favourite is to wear an expression like you’re trying to choke anyone who hands you a flyer using only the power of your mind. Then they usually back off.
A much better use for a flyer. Photo: zoomar/Flickr
Last Monday Anders Behring Breivik, who murdered 77 people on July 22, appeared in open court for the first time after a judge overruled a police request to keep the hearing in private. Breivik’s first two appearances in court were both closed to the press and public, but at Monday’s hearing over 150 journalists and members of the public watched as Breivik was sentenced to 12 more weeks in custody. The issue of whether Breivik’s court case should be heard in public or behind closed doors has sparked a massive debate throughout Norway, whose inhabitants are still coming to terms with his horrendous crime. Many people believe the trial should be closed to the press and public, fearing an open hearing will give him a platform from which to publicise his extreme-right views, while traditionalists say his case should be held in public to ensure open justice. Both sides have a fair point. Breivik has shown no sign of abating from trying to spread the extreme right-wing propaganda he set out in his manifesto. Whilst this manifesto is available online and so can be read by whoever, whenever, the thought of national and international press publishing his hateful monologues to all and sundry does not seem the best way to cover the trial. It would be nice to think that the press
would take sensible decisions and censor most of Breivik’s ideas, but seeing how desperate some papers are for the juiciest and most eye-catching headlines, I’m not sure self-censorship is the biggest quality of some of the tabloids. Then again, one could argue that people should have enough common sense to distinguish serious political debate from the ramblings of a bitter and twisted massmurderer. But who is to say some people won’t become influenced by his words, creating more conflict and tension on an already volatile topic? The question of how far society should take open justice is difficult to answer. Earlier this month it emerged that two thirds of barristers backed Justice Secretary Kenneth Clarke’s plan to lift the ban on TV cameras in court. Clarke wants judges’ remarks to be captured on screen, but says safeguards will be in place to protect witnesses and other interested parties.
‘His trial should only be open for the families. Justice should be open, yes, but not gaping’
But surely when witnesses know there are cameras in court, some will surely feel less inclined to give testimony, thus hindering the path for the court to unveil the truth. Especially those witnesses who cannot afford to be seen testifying for fear of reprisals must think twice before stepping into the box, with every move and
Photos via Flickr: (left) Dmitry Valberg, (top) quinn.anya and (bottom) Beinecke Library
sound they make being caught on camera. Once you install cameras in courtrooms, it does create a precedent which could easily snowball. Tory MP Roger Gale believed justice would be “turned into a reality show”, and cited TV coverage of Parliament as an example, which has resulted in grandstanding by MPs and a concentration on the juiciest extracts at the expense of less entertaining debates. Open justice is definitely a vital ingredient in an effective democracy. But we have to be careful not to step over the line, or we shall soon be going down a slippery slope. At present in Britain, we have a fairly open court system where journalists and members of the public are allowed entry to almost any trial. As a journalism student, I do think that there are too many sections and exceptions in the law which allow the judge to censor the press, on, for example, names of victims, witnesses, or young offenders, but to a certain degree I can see the value of these statutes. Rather than focus on whether or not to allow cameras into courtrooms, we should instead be asking how we can ensure journalists and the public are always allowed access to the courtrooms without the judge opting to throw us out again. Sometimes judges are a little too happy to hear certain pieces of evidence behind closed doors, but Justice Secretary Kenneth Clarke should be focusing on relaxing the judge’s powers a little rather than wasting time talking about video recording. Naturally, some cases will have strong security implications or other points which
means a closed hearing will be the only option, but at the moment it feels like the onus is on the accused being protected, rather than the press and public having a right to see justice applied.
‘At present in Britain, we have a fairly open court system where the public are allowed entry’
In the case of Breivik, we all know he will be convicted of mass murder, and if the Norwegian state has any common sense they will sentence him for his lifetime, rather than just 21 years, the maximum penalty for any crime in Norway. I do not trust the British and other international media enough to believe that they would take the correct ethical decisions over whether or not to publish the outrageous and pointless arguments Breivik will make in the upcoming trial and so we should not allow Breivik a platform in the international press. Therefore his trial should only be open for the families of the 77 people and a selected group within the Norwegian press who can decide what content from the court shall be published. Justice should be open yes, but not gaping.
Got an opinion on the topics discussed this fortnight? Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
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Cannabis is a joint adventure Simon Pilkington You are in an out-of-the-way place, aged between 13and16, huddled in a tight circle with your excited mates. Out of a jacket pocket comes a measly-looking ten-bag, acquired from some local shifty character or an amused older brother. A joint is inexpertly rolled; it is bulgy and misshapen, drooping whimsically at the end. You take a drag after waiting in hushed anticipation. It has little noticeable effect, aside from a slight feeling of dizziness. You begin to wonder whether the few quid you put towards this adventure was a regrettable waste of pocket money. Many people will no doubt recognise this tale of youthful dabbling. Indeed, smoking cannabis is increasingly seen as normal teenage behaviour, with a Guardian poll finding that over 81 per cent of people consider it a rite of passage. Such findings are at least superficially eyebrow-raising. Smoking cannabis remains a criminal offence, and its effects on mental health can be serious. Is it really something that should be seen as a rite of passage? There is nothing inevitable about kids dabbling with drugs. Many will choose not to get involved; others will simply not be able to, either because of strict
Cannabis isn’t just the reserve of hippies and women in, er, capes. parents or lack of availability. Contrary to Daily Mail-fuelled hysteria, modern society has not descended into an orgiastic drugs binge. In every age group, illegal drug-taking remains the exception not the rule. Nonetheless, smoking cannabis is something many teenagers will do. And because it is seen as normal, and indeed cool, the social pressures on some kids who may
otherwise wish to stay away from drugs can be considerable. This is undoubtedly unfortunate, and should not go unchallenged, but peer pressure is generally a social fact whatever your age. Many students would no doubt prefer not to be stuck in a semipermanent hangover, but nights out are hard to avoid if you wish to remain sociable. Even if pressured into doing so,
Photo: mardi_grass_2010/Flickr sharing the odd spliff is unlikely to do much harm. Cannabis taken in moderation is generally conducive to little more than laughter and drowsiness. You may feel slightly on edge after a toke too many, but that soon goes. The main immediate damage will probably be to your wallet, as buying is expensive, as can be a serious case of the munchies. Persistently heavy use has been
linked to mental health problems, particularly psychosis. But it is surely common sense to avoid anything in excess, and evidence suggests cannabis is much less likely to foster dependency than drugs such as heroin or nicotine, which produce strong physical withdrawal symptoms that compel further and repeated use. Moreover, the negative effects of cannabis are trifling compared to those of alcohol, which remains an infinitely more damaging drug regardless of its legality. Drink brings violence, social disturbance and fatalities. Getting high may have longterm health implications, but it generally produces feelings that are the inverse of those that provoke people to fight or wreck the streets. And recorded deaths that have directly resulted from weed are simply not heard of. So the argument that cannabis is always harmful is not necessarily convincing. Most of those huddled in parks will give it a few tries and then move on. Because weed soon gets dreary. Like many other things that teenagers naively idealise like drinking, going to university, adulthood in general it is stratospherically overhyped and overrated. They will soon wonder what all the fuss is about. Even if smoking cannabis is becoming more prevalent, the kids, it seems, will be alright.
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The Sun may be setting Women make decisions, on Hillsborough liars not just sandwiches Simon Meechan It is interesting to see that the Union Council are considering debating whether or not to continue stocking The Sun, in light of their treatment of the Hillsborough disaster. The newspaper’s attempt to tarnish the memory of 96 innocent Liverpool fans by printing outright lies about what happened on the Leppings Lane End that day is enough reason for myself to never buy it, and to believe that anyone with morals should not even consider purchasing it. Granted, The Sun have apologised, but to me that is not quite enough for the very serious libel they are guilty of, wrongly accusing ‘fans’ of stealing from the victims and allegedly assaulting a police officer who was reviving a victim. In short, they played upon and exaggerated the most insulting negative stereotypes of Liverpudlians and football fans, and this helped to divert blame from those truly responsible for the Hillsborough Disaster. As the Justice for the 96 campaign website states, appropriate action would have been a full scale retraction the day after they chose to print it. Yes, other newspapers did print stories which made details of how drunk some of the fans were, but they were different in stating they were simply accusations made. The Sun, however, chose to condemn innocent fans without a trial by giving their vile, unchecked and outright false accusations as ‘The Truth’. They lied. Adding insult to injury was their failure
to sack editor Kelvin MacKenzie as a columnist, the man both responsible for the headline, and, according to accounts of those working for The Sun at the time, insistent upon its wording. Although MacKenzie admitted in 1993 that the story was a ‘fundamental mistake’ he later explained that he was ‘forced’ to apologise. Any newspaper that continued employing a man who felt forced to say sorry for printing lies about the events surrounding the deaths of 96 people is not worthy of your readership. Should it be taken off the shelves formally? Well, perhaps not, you do have the choice to read what you wish and that I believe is important. If you really want to spend your hard earned pennies on boobs, The Only Way Is Essex gossip and vicious lies then you should be allowed to. However, the next time you think about buying it, take a tram down to Leppings Lane and visit the memorial, take in the deaths of 96 innocent people. Look at the football scarves and shirts grieving fans have left and decide for yourself if a newspaper which so insensitively dealt with their deaths is really something you want to be associated with.
Alisha Rouse Ed Miliband’s deputy leader, Harriet Harman, was discovered recently to be organising meetings for the 11 women in the shadow cabinet; men not invited. At a time when the Tories are losing the women’s vote, the closing of rape crisis centres and cutting of the civil service, staffed in the majority by women, have not gone down well. Ms. Harman has realised what an opportunity this is to nab the women’s votes. In the 2010 General Election, 650 Members of Parliament were elected. 144 of these were women. 506 were male. With margins like these, surely the meeting of purely female MPs only reflects what the other sex do anyway? Politics is essentially older men sitting in Saville Row suits deciding what is best for a single mum living in a council flat. The fact that these meetings have been dubbed by the Daily Mail as “Harriet’s Kitchen Cabinet” is concerning enough. They don’t even attempt to not be sexist, while out-right accusing Ms. Harman of sexism herself. Perhaps Harman is undermining Ed Miliband, but the appeal of a strong female frontbench, to support and progress the rights and concerns of women in this country is incredibly important for the Labour Party. Think back to the Blair years, with his policy of positive discrimination in the form of the active recruitment of women for parliamentary roles. Not only did issues such as womens’ health, domestic
violence and childcare receive increased parliamentary priority, but Blair won three General Elections for the first time in Labour’s history. Even without the controversial policy of all-female shortlists, in 2005 77 percent of women in the Commons were Labour. Nowadays, in a post-Blair apocalypse, David Cameron’s cabinet is comprised of five women, one of which is a Baroness and 14 of them are Oxbridge educated; but that’s a different issue all together. Consequently, what were some of the first things to get cut in this old-school attempt to “balance the books”? The Civil Service, and community support services, including rape crisis centres. The medicine for this, apparently, was the Big Society. Who would have the time to run their own libraries? Unemployed women. Those women whose jobs were cut. I can see how this was meant to work. In a time when a worrying narrative is beginning to emerge, Harman’s concept of female-only cabinet meets is a clever one. Bringing women’s issues to the fore-front of policy agendas is simply a good idea. Imagine the furore if male MPs were found to be doing the same thing, progressing “men’s rights”. However, the difference is that generally, minus potentially the mad but impressive antics of Fathers for Justice, men’s rights aren’t at risk and never have been. These policies are simply to ensure that those who are being discriminated against and have been for decades, are not. Femaleonly meetings are not aimed to exclude men, they are aimed to relieve the exclusion of women and policies that primarily concern women, from the forefront of this country’s political agenda.
FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
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The 99 per cent have a wealth of good ideas Martin Bottomley
Sheffield Cathedral is officially being occupied, as part of the worldwide movement sparked by the Occupy Wall Street protests, and inspired by the anti-capitalist camp set up in front of St. Paul’s Cathedral. With the now-famous slogan “We are the 99 per cent”, their poster accuses the wealthiest one per cent of just sitting there, watching their “money make more money” while the population is being deprived of ever more wealth, although they are the ones keeping society going. Opponents have found this kind of revolutionary rhetoric all too easy to mock. “They should all just get a job” is a dismissal found with pretty much any critic of the protests. They do have a bit of a point: the protest camp is not exactly populated by pilots and doctors. And even Sheffield Cathedral itself, in a press statement beneath a logo bearing the slogan “A Place for All People”, has expressed some displeasure with the protests.
‘Critics of the status quo need to be engaged - who would, without the media?’
“The protestors do not have the Cathedral’s permission to use the Churchyard” doesn’t read like an endorsement, despite the Cathedral’s assurance that they find “some of what they are saying…very important.”
Occupy is more than just a bunch of wrinkled pro-tenters. Photo: Mark McKay So is this whole occupying business want systematic change, local action all just a bunch of daft wannabe is inevitable. revolutionaries making noise for the Obviously, Sheffield is hardly the sake of it? capital of the financial markets, Actually, the reality is a bit less one- and the Cathedral certainly has, at sided. While the marketing rhetoric present, nothing to do with global for the Occupy movement certainly capitalist exploitation. The fact that does seem undifferentiated and the church endorses part-Marxist zealous, the reasons of the individuals messages does make this all a for protesting vary a lot. somewhat daft affair. A row of interviews The Star Occupy Sheffield wasn’t the conducted with protesters showed a best-planned of campaigns. But variety of people, from anti-capitalists nevertheless it is an important part of and protesters against a system that the discussion we need. Critics of the nobody bothered to explain to them, status quo need to be engaged. Who to people worried about how they’re would have engaged them without going to get through the winter. the media presence? Nobody. The issues vary from general This argument may have been political critique to local and personal abused to an absurd degree in the grievances. What unites these people wake of the London riots, but it still is the will to make their voices heard, justifies the commendable activism of to bring grievances into people’s Occupiers worldwide. Dismissing the spheres rather than just contentedly protests in themselves is just about nodding at the TV coverage of the as productive as telling everyone to Wall Street protests. stay at home on Election Day. Occupy It isn’t just the national government’s Sheffield needs a more coherent job to ensure the welfare of the people, message and execution, but its spirit and these people recognise that. If you is entirely commendable.
Christmas time already? Of Claus it is Hamilton Jones The nights are beginning to draw in, the days are getting colder, and Starbucks have released their highly anticipated festive drinks selection and their classic red cups. Is it time for Christmas? I think so! Some of you may think that it is too early in the year to be celebrating Christmas, but the hoards of people who packed out my local Starbucks for their two-for-one on festive drinks would beg to differ. With a choice of four festive drinks, you can see why crowds were drawn to Starbucks to escape the cold weather and warm up with a hot coffee. Delight ensued on Friday afternoon when I got the two-for-one deal by myself, although I had to brush off looks of scepticism and confusion as I sat down alone with two rather large drinks. It is apparent that I am a sucker for Starbucks. Many people think that Christmas doesn’t start until December 13, however, as the 12 days of Christmas lead-up begins. To those people I say: “Bah
humbug!” Food giant Tesco have already filled their stores with decorations to celebrate the holidays, and Primark have brought out their ‘Grandma-knitted’ style reindeer jumpers. Most cities will also be lit up with Christmas lights by the end of November. Sheffield’s Big Switch On will be happening on Sunday November 22, while some regions of London, including Oxford Street, had their lights turned on in late October.
‘Once it gets to February, I’m pining for the next Christmas’
There is no denying, however, that Christmas celebrations start earlier and earlier each year. No sooner is Halloween out of the way, than shops stick up the Christmas decorations and put their 10-year-old scratched Christmas CD on, which will inevitably get stuck every five minutes, leaving you abandoned at the till whilst the cashier goes to deal with it. After almost two months of this, the music does begin to grow irritating and even my
Christmas spirit fades. But in true retail tradition, once we get to December 26, the decorations come down and suddenly it is all about the New Year, and the long ten-month wait until November begins again. Once it gets to around February though, I have forgotten last Christmas and I am pining for the next one to arrive. I cannot wait for the lights to be turned on and the shop windows to be full of fake snow and plastic Christmas trees. M o s t importantly of all though, I cannot wait to slouch in a comfy sofa and sip on my delicious festive drink in a red cup. Frankly, if Starbucks started red cups mid-June, I would probably whack out the Christmas tree. As far as I am concerned, if Starbucks say it is Christmas, it is.
Editorial Secret Millionaire money can only go so far
The poverty, disparity and helplessness of the less affluent areas of Sheffield were highlighted this week when Channel 4’s Secret Millionaire came to the city. It is easy for us students to be ignorant of the problems the city has when we live in a very isolated community – the student bubble. While it is easy for millionaires to throw their cash around to help those that need it, the real power can still come from the people who decide help others on a regular basis. As a group of 25,000 students we have immense power in the city and can really make a difference. Sheffield would struggle to survive if it was not for the consumer culture of us students, spending thousands of pounds a week in the shops, clubs and bars of the city. The brilliant work of Sheffield Volunteering and RAG does not go unnoticed and helps some of the most vulnerable and those in need of assistance. But we can do more to help. People need to show the desire to help those as no matter how little money we have, as students we are all in a much more privileged situation than many of those who have not had the same opportunities we have had. However, if more students engaged with volunteering the impression we give to the permanent residents of the city would improve 10-fold. It only takes an hour a week to help improve the lives of those who need a little extra help to get back on track. There are plenty of students here who have very few contact hours per week. Some of this time could be used to help those who are not as fortunate as us. No longer would we be seen as the lager-louts who are causing problems for those that live and commute in the areas we do. The more people who see students working for good in their areas the better students will be seen by the Sheffield population. The compassion of the many can do more good than the money from the individual in the long run.
Matt Burgess - Forge Press Editor email@example.com
D.A.R.T.S. Forge Press takes its satirical aim
Website of the week:
World Beard and Moustache Championships www.worldbeardchampionships. com In honour of the last two weeks of Movember, we bring you the World Beard and Moustache Championships. Yes, it’s every bit as awesome as it sounds. This isn’t your average facial fuzz - from elaborately sculpted freestyle moustaches to the Garibaldi beard (unfortunately not related to the biscuit) there’s a chin squirrel for
She’s a celebrity, get me into her!
Even the big man himself knows it’s time to get to work when the red cups appear.
Scratching around, trying to find any reason to include a scantily clad woman in this fortnight’s issue, we discovered that Jessica-Jane Clement is actually from Sheffield. Result! The glamour model turned reality TV star was born in the Steel City, and phwoar, we wouldn’t mind forging something with her. Her performance ‘down under’ excites us greatly, and we hope she pulls out a great performance in the bush. If she doesn’t make it through and gets kicked out Halfway through the process, we’re sure there’s a few students who Woodhouse her if she’s left with nowhere to go. She’s certainly This is what I’m a Celeb is all about, right? Photo: Joey Newcombe/ given me a Fulwood! Flickr Good luck Jess!
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FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
“THEY HAD THE ARAB SPRING.
THIS IS THE UK AUTUMN...” We meet up with the people behind the headlines, as Forge Press investigates the motives behind the Occupy Sheffield movement Words: Liam Jack Photos: Mark McKay
FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
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n the heart of Sheffield’s historic city centre a circle of tents adorned with antiestablishment slogans and declarations that “We are the 99%” face the busy tram stop on Church Street. Some members of the public stop and take note of the banners. Others pull out their camera phones and take photos. A few start up conversations with the eager, friendly and passionate group of campaigners who keep the camp running. However, many just blank Occupy Sheffield completely, a sense of insular apathy on their faces. I spot one member of the public reading the numerous signs that hang from the largest tent and ask him what he makes of it all. His response is not atypical. “I support what they are trying to achieve and I think it’s a worthy cause.” He then glances at the slightly haphazard layout of the site before continuing, “but I’m not sure how this is going to achieve anything.” Occupy Sheffield came into being on Saturday 5th November after 70 anti-cuts protesters marched from City Hall and settled outside Sheffield Cathedral. Mirroring the events of St Paul’s Cathedral in London and the Occupy movements around the world, the protestors set up a small village of tents to voice their frustration with what they see as a corrupt banking and political system that only looks out for the wealthy elites and ignores the needs of the masses. It has grown steadily since its inception and now includes around 12 tents, a small cooking space, a gazebo reception area and even their own portaloo. Drew Dallen, 57, a charming and erudite protester who works as an artist and a social worker, explains that the number of people involved is growing by the day. “In terms of numbers the site is growing rapidly with a large number of people coming and going throughout the day,” he says. He estimates that the group directly involved is around 50 strong but that number is swelling all the time. Another campaigner is Mary, a 27 year old social worker who wished to keep her surname private. She explains the reason the protestors chose the site outside the cathedral. “We had three options originally; Devonshire Green, Peace Gardens and here. We chose this site because of the high public footfall, the fact that we are close to several high street banks, some of which are now owned by the taxpayer – and because it is across the road from Cutler’s Hall, a building synonymous with finance and commerce in Sheffield.” Perhaps most importantly of all is that they are on ground owned by the cathedral and not the council so they cannot be moved on by the police. Although the camp is illegal they do have open dialogue with the cathedral. Ben Jackson, a 35 year old joiner from Sheffield explains: “W0hile they have not taken an official stance on the protest, they do broadly support the aims of helping those that need help.” The group is part of a larger movement that is spreading worldwide including sites at St Paul’s Cathedral in London and Wall Street in New York. In the UK alone there are 17 ongoing Occupy movements. Ben believes that over 900 people have been directly involved with the UK camps so far. And although the UK movement doesn’t have a unified declaration, there are overarching themes that run through the protests across the country. Sheffield’s manifesto states that, “the current system is unsustainable and we need alternatives” and
The site is growing rapidly with a large number of people coming and going throughout the day Drew Dallen, Sheffield occupier
that they “refuse to pay for the banks’ crisis.” Drew explains this further; “What we are seeing is the systematic removal of vital services and the lowering of real income for the majority while the top 1% are getting richer. The rich, the bankers, are protecting themselves and they do not care about regular people.” He goes on to compare the movement with the uprisings in the Middle East and North Africa that took place earlier this year and saw the removal of several long standing dictators, including Hosni Mubarak in Egypt and Colonel Gaddafi in Libya. “They had the Arab spring. This is the UK autumn.” And this message seems to be slowly getting across to the politicians. Paul Blomfield, Labour MP for Central Sheffield has said that, “the Occupy movements are raising extremely important points about the way that our economic system isn’t working for the majority of people. “We need a more responsible economy and the Occupy protests are part of the debate about how we achieve this.” However he does point out that the camp is not without its controversy and that “not everyone will support the methods of the protestors.” Some people have seen it as counter-productive, antisocial and disrespectful. Occasionally, usually when drunk, a small minority have voiced opposition to the camp in an aggressive manner. One drunken man even tried to pull down the camp before being subdued by the police. Others have directed criticism at the camp in relation to Remembrance Day, saying that it is against what the veterans died for. However Drew argues that the freedoms that British citizens fought for in the First and Second World Wars are what they are exercising now; the freedom of speech, the freedom to protest, the freedom of assembly. He believes that the progress that was made in the past is slowly being eroded. “The welfare state that came about after the Second World War, which is there to protect the vulnerable, is being taken away from us through service cuts. We are fighting for that.”
We need a more responsible economy and the Occupy protests are part of the debate about how we achieve this Paul Blomfield, MP for Central Sheffield
Another difficulty with the camp has been managing some of the homeless people that have come to the camp. This has meant the camp has come into conflict with the Archer Project, a charity that operates from the cathedral and helps feed and rehouse local homeless people. The Archer Project have asked the camp not to provide them with soup as it is seen as interfering with the aims of their charity. This sentiment was echoed by Paul Blomfield. In a statement he said he hoped the protest won’t affect “the important work of Sheffield Cathedral, particularly their work with the homeless.” However the camp has become a hub for the homeless and it seems to provide them with a sense of community and work. Several come and go and help out with odd jobs around the camp such as bringing in furniture, setting up tents and moving things around. Drew has a great deal of support. “They help for next to nothing but it gives everyone a sense of community, a sense of belonging, a sense of working towards something.” However, it can be trying at times because of problems with alcohol and substance abuse. The camp now operates as a strictly alcohol- free zone to prevent any unwanted incidents. The protesters want to make sure they are not making the news for the wrong reasons. One thing that isn’t clear is how long the Occupy Sheffield movement is going to be around. There is no definite timescale for the protest but when quizzed on the length of their stay there is solidarity in their answer: “As long as possible.” However with the stinging autumn winds lashing at the camp and winter fast approaching there may soon be a time when it becomes unrealistic to continue with their outdoor protest. Huddled in a circle of chairs, wrapped in layers of winter clothing and with breath visible Ben jokes, “Next time, lets plan this sort of a thing for spring or summer,” to the group. There is a spirited laugh that suggests that they’ve still got plenty of energy left.
www.forgetoday.com FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
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FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
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I Can’t Get No Sleep Nights spent agonising over hours of lost sleep are becoming increasingly common amongst students, Forge Press has discovered... Words: Samuel Dam Art: Rebecca Cooke
he phrase ‘sleeping like a baby’ is one which is commonly said. However it seems somewhat oxymoronic. It is used to denote someone who is sleeping soundly, but look at any new parent and it becomes obvious that sleeping soundly is not what babies actually do. Their child’s lack of toilet manners or perverse sense of humour will ensure anyone in ear shot will be up most of the night. In many ways it is much the same for students; the stereotype is that as a peer group they do not wake before noon and almost never see the light of day. In many cases it is simply that, a stereotype and in some cases that is a distant dream. For a surprising number of students, lying in bed with their eyelids peeled firmly back at 4:30am unable to sleep, trying to remember the last time they had a week of undisturbed sleep is an unfortunately familiar scenario. Depending on which study you look at, between ten to fifteen percent of students suffer from insomnia and the worst is to come, for when the student population enters the real world it is estimated almost one third of them will develop serious problems with insomnia. This should come as no surprise to anyone; the lives they lead are a veritable breeding ground for insomnia. A great deal of students drink excessive amounts, have irregular sleeping patterns, their rooms and beds are used for anything and everything and moreover, the peace and quiet required for healthy undisturbed sleep is so often denied in a student hall or house. These are all contributing factors which are said to be bad ‘sleep hygiene’. Scouring the list of strategies for ‘Good Sleep Hygiene’ – a phrase coined to denote healthy sleeping practice - on the university’s insomnia support website it appears that students break nearly all of them. In fact as I write this I myself am breaking a cardinal sin right now, doing work in bed, which is only supposed to be used for sleep and
The lives students lead are a veritable breeding ground for insomnia
sex. There is an entire long list of possible causes of irregular sleeping patterns and this should serve as a literal ‘what-not-to-do’ list for anyone who is suffering from insomnia. Some of the tips range from the obvious such as don’t drink caffeine before bed, contrary to the popular belief that a warm cup of tea is soothing. Some tips however are more informative, for example you should relax 30 minutes before bed to reduce brain activity which means no TV, internet or films. Reading is recommended; as if most students don’t do enough of that already. After accepting this piece I took it upon myself to start a hugely unscientific experiment to see if I could rediscover perfect sleep by practicing Good Sleep Hygiene. Whilst I have suffered some fairly chronic insomnia in the past year I must say that there has always been something in the way which does not allow me to maintain a regular sleep pattern, either too much drinking or travelling most notably which can be common stresses amongst students. Knowing I had, and still have coursework coming out of my ears, it seemed like the perfect time to stay in and try to maintain a regular sleep pattern, something I am sure my liver will also thank me for. The plan was to keep some sort of journal to record my successful sleeping - the best I’d had since I was a child; at least that was the theory. Unfortunately the theory didn’t quite work out in practice and by day three I was up again at four in the morning pondering how I would manage the next day without substantial rest. However this was not that unusual so I wasn’t too fazed and an unscheduled nap on the front row of a lecture saw me through to the evening, where I then failed to sleep. This was a complete failure then and proved that alcohol and going out was not the root cause of my issues and perhaps the issues of the general student populous. Having tried Good Sleep Hygiene the question arises whether insomnia is something that really
When you have insomnia you’re never really asleep and you’re never really awake Chuck Palahnuik, Author of Fight Club
needs solving. It never seems as bad in the morning as when you are actually trying to sleep and think of all that time not being wasted sleeping – after all it is said we spend around a third of our lives sleeping; perhaps this figure is changing. Apart from Faithless’ track, aptly titled Insomnia there have been many songs and films about insomnia and none of them are too jovial. Those who have seen the film Fight Club will know the disastrous effects of chronic insomnia, and may identify with its protagonist’s claim that when you have insomnia “You’re never really asleep and you’re never really awake.” Whilst many do not experience such severe symptoms, even mild insomnia can certainly have a largely adverse impact on everyday life. Apart from the obvious of feeling lethargic all of the time and not being able to partake in anything fully, there is the mental drain. It can make you feel just rough, at times neurotic and constantly on edge. On top of this there are the unerring pressures and deadlines of university to consider. It’s simply impossible not to let sleep deprivation affect studying. On an intuitive level if you cannot concentrate in class then you are probably not going to do as well, presuming you go to lectures when you can sleep of course. A study by James F Pagel MD from the University of Colorado found that out of 64 students those with the lowest GPA’s (average grades), 69.7% had trouble falling asleep, 65% reported waking at night and having trouble falling back to sleep and 72% had trouble concentrating during the day. Whilst this isn’t the most extensive study ever carried out it does illustrate the detrimental impact that a lack of sleep can have. Canvassing other students it seems that the largest cause is simple stress. The feeling that there are not enough hours in the day to get what you need done is a common feeling. According to a 2009 sleep study, students get less sleep around exam periods, despite the fact that this is probably when they need it most. It is important to avoid the spiral of worrying about exams, which in turns causes a lack of sleep, which then has a detrimental effect on exam results. It is true that this is easier said than done, but it is best to relax. Statistically there are actually very few people who have issues sleeping because there is something physically wrong with them and as a result you may be instructed to delve deep into your psyche to find the root cause of the problem. Whilst this may sound as appealing as vodka after a heavy night it would probably help in other areas of life too, so is worthwhile exploring. Ultimately, although it is not something which is advertised when considering a university career, insomnia is a fundamental part of modern life for many students. It is something which will likely have a detrimental effect on daily life and is simply not very nice in general. It should not be ignored therefore, as there are no guarantees it will not become worse. There is plenty of help out there, starting with the university counselling service website with strategies and further information. Should this not help, a face to face appointment can be booked with the service to explore further the issues which may be of concern so hopefully the need to join Fight Club can be avoided.
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FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
With the jobs market proving unpredictable, Forge Press looks at a growing increase in young people setting up their own businesses Words: Sophie Allen Art: Jonathan Robinson
he role of University, aside from allowing everyone to dodge real world responsibilities and have a pretty good time in the process, is to ultimately prepare young people for the world of work. Competition for jobs has always been fierce but in the current economic climate the situation has dramatically worsened, with it recently being reported that almost a million young people aged 16-24 are unemployed. University education, plus the experience to be gained whilst learning, aims to set graduates apart, yet despite this unemployment remains high. So, with the current job market nut being so hard to crack and positions remaining scarce, there has never been a better time for creative, innovative students to just go ahead and create a job for themselves - by starting their own businesses. This week (November 14-19) was, unknown to the majority of the student body and the wider community, no ordinary week. Over these seven days, 10 million participants from 104 different countries have been holding events, activities, and competitions to promote innovation, creativity, and business acumen, all in celebration of Global Entrepreneurship Week. Business and entrepreneurship is typically perceived as a very exclusive area, reserved for those with extensive business, finance, or management training, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Global Entrepreneurship Week aims to combat these perceptions, with workshops, competitions and events all held to promote the concept of enterprise within different disciplines, communities, and interests. Within the University, there are a wide variety of initiatives available to students, staff, and graduates that are interested in enterprise. The University of Sheffield Enterprise (USE) – a section of the University
Enterprise is about having ideas, doing something about them, and taking the opportunity to bring about change Elizabeth Ree, Information Officer at USE
devoted to business support and activities - works diligently to promote the image of enterprise and encourage young people to make their ideas reality, offering funding, coaching, and work space to help individuals along the way. “Enterprise is about having ideas, doing something about them, and taking the opportunity to bring about change” says Elizabeth Ree, Information Officer at USE. “Global Entrepreneurship Week really helps in what we do, with the wide variety of activities by multiple stakeholders significantly raising awareness. “At USE, we help students and graduates of up to five years to make their ideas happen. We have a large package of support but the main highlights are a £1,000 Proof of Concept grant, business advisor sessions, and our bookable meeting spaces which allow people to carry out their enterprising activities.” The achievement of the University of Sheffield Enterprise is easy to see. Their website features a number of success stories of students and staff that have successfully followed their dreams, and with business support have turned their ideas into working businesses. Examples include Clickety Click, a photography business run by students and graduates from Sheffield, Oddtails, a group that write and illustrate children’s stories, and the Will Yaki noodle bar on Portobello, which USE helped find its feet. In conjunction with Global Entrepreneurship Week, University of Sheffield Enterprise recently held a themed craft fair designed to encourage students, staff and graduates with creative ideas to develop them into working business ideas. While this concept of mingling art or creativity with business might to some seem strange, creative or artistic students often have the biggest and most exciting ideas – the most essential ingredient in starting a business. Plus, with the growing trend
I never really knew what I wanted to do after University; I wasn’t one of those people who knew which career they wanted to follow Katherine Warrilow, set up Cupcake Yourself
for vintage and handmade items, creative businesses such as these are becoming increasingly popular. Particularly on the run-up to Christmas customers are constantly on the look-out for handmade or quirky items, which have a much more thoughtful feel than something purchased from your average department store. Examples of such businesses are all around us, and not just in Sheffield. One example is McKenna Henson, 13, from Nottinghamshire, who flips the usual perceptions of boardroom, briefcase business on its head. McKenna runs candycouture. co.uk, a website selling handmade candy and novelty jewellery, which she has developed entirely through her own ideas and creative talents. “For my 13th birthday I wanted some candy jewellery, but once it had passed I realised I could try making it myself. I researched this on the internet and looked at various suppliers of basic materials, calculated how much money I would need to spend to get me going, and with my birthday money I made a start. “The business itself came after being complimented by family and friends on my designs. I began selling at craft fairs and through the website, which I designed myself along with flyers and business cards. “While I know fashions shift and change with time, I would love to develop my business by following trends and coming up with new ideas.” Another entrepreneur with sweet ideas is 22-year-old Katherine Warrilow, from Keele University. Having always been interested in baking, Katherine jumped at the opportunity to trial sell her cakes in her work place. She now runs Cupcake Yourself, a cake studio with a difference. Not only does she sell the standard fare, but her unique selling point offers the opportunity to transform photographs, logos, or other images into cake decorations, allowing the ultimate in cake personalisation.
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FEATURES “The financial and legal aspects were all things I had absolutely no idea about. So, after applying for a start-up funding grant through an enterprise scheme at my University, I attended business workshops to get a decent grasp of the basics. Then, with the funding, I was able to purchase not only equipment but my website domain so that I could begin selling. “Once I had my logo, website, and all the tools I needed to do large orders - that was it. Ever since, Cupcake Yourself has been growing and gaining more customers every week.” This shows that for students that have a burning idea or a creative talent, part-time work does not have to be the only way of making money. However, many do not have the confidence to share their ideas and admit they are serious about taking them further. If they do get the support they need, the results can be very rewarding. “A lot of people have a creative side, yet it is sometimes still an area that can be overlooked,” says McKenna. “However, it feels more natural being involved in a business that you have created as you are working on something that you are genuinely interested in.” Katherine agrees, suggesting that though it might not be a conventional path for students or graduates, it offers a huge amount of freedom that cannot be offered within a typical career. “I never really knew what I wanted to do after University; I wasn’t one of those people who knew for years which career path they wanted to follow. “While it’s difficult being responsible for an entire company, there are a lot of people out there to offer support. It was always a worry if I was doing the right thing, and I wondered how on earth I was going to get customers or get people to know about me. “Now, though, I’m much more confident. I have a great brand, a great website, and I am proud of every order I make. “I never thought in a million years I would be here running my own business and telling people that yes, this is all mine - it’s just me and my cupcakes, and it’s great.” For students interested in starting their own creative businesses, there are a wide variety of options available to get them started. While craft fairs are the most traditional way of selling creative wares, with modern technology much business can be done online. Aside from running a website, like McKenna and Katherine, there are huge specialist online networks that allow the development of shops, customer bases, and policies. Etsy. com is perhaps the most popular of these, with a massive amount of international traffic that offers a much bigger market than your average craft fair, as well a large amount of support for those just beginning on their venture. As McKenna, Katherine, and the various success stories of the University of Sheffield Enterprise show, perhaps enterprise is not about professionals, power suits, or stressful meetings - at least, not entirely. It is also about taking an idea, throwing it out there, and having the confidence and drive to work on and develop it. “If young people have a passion or a talent, they shouldn’t let it go to waste,’ says Katherine. “If you have an idea you’re already half way there. “Just be confident and keep working hard. Don’t let anything stand in your way; there is always a way forward. Everyone makes mistakes - you can’t know everything - but the whole process is just a learning curve. Enjoy it.”
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Lifestyle & Travel
Fashion Food & Drink Health & Fitness Travel Sex & Relationships Technology
FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
This fortnight... We’re stressed. Assessment time is here, we’re busy and tired, so we’re looking for stress busters.
FOUR OF THE BEST
Places to watch live sport on a budget English Institute of Sports A genuinely world-class venue, EIS Sheffield offers an array of top drawer sport at a decent price. It hosts everything from futsal to table-tennis. You can grab a ticket to see Sheffield Sharks play basketball here from £7.
Sheffield Eagles Rugby LEague
If you can stomach sitting at Bramall Lane, and don’t have a problem watching large men running into each other, you could do worse than a rugby league match featuring the Sheffield Eagles. Ticket prices aren’t bad at all (£10 concessions).
Throughout the year University of Sheffield sporting teams go up against other universities in British Universities and Colleges Sports competitions. It’s almost always free as well.
Nikki Scott – Warrington, UK to Chiang Mai, Thailand
Travel. It’s something many of us can only dream of, sat at our desks in rainy Sheffield. Whether it’s memories of your ‘Gap Yah’ or plans to escape from the real world once you’ve finally graduated, the idea of escaping is a seductive one, and each year many people venture out to broaden their horizons. But the real question is, what you will do whilst you travel? Is it all about drinking buckets at Full Moon parties in Thailand and going on safari in Africa? Things were slightly different for these three inspirational travellers, whose adventures changed their lives forever.
Having graduated with an English degree in 2006, Nikki Scott fell straight into a job in marketing. Two years later however, her itchy feet kicked in and Nikki packed her rucksack and left her desk behind, heading alone to Kathmandu, Nepal. Despite being terrified and feeling homesick from the moment she left, it was that once in a lifetime decision that she can truly say changed her life. A month into her solo travels, whilst soaking up the atmosphere of the Khao San Road in Bangkok, Nikki noticed how many free magazines there were aimed at tourists. Yet not one of them grabbed her attention as an adventuring backpacker. It was at this moment that South
Bungalows and Bears
Tom Stoker So, does anyone actually have an idea what you get when you cross a bungalow with a bear? A beargalow? Bungalear? Or maybe just a geriatric version of Goldilocks? Probably not, but it’s worth thinking about. In Sheffield, a bear plus a bungalow equals an old fire station converted into a super hip, dimly lit bar on Division Street. It comes complete with graffiti plastered toilets and sofas so comfortable you’d swear they were made of candyfloss and rainbows. You’d want to make the most of those seats as well, as a decent round costs about the same as the national debt of Greece. Still though, if you fancy a few quiet(ish) drinks and some homemade grub, then Bungalows and Bears is worth checking out. The first thing that strikes you when you walk in is not the jumblesale style decor, or the amply stocked fridges, but the heat of a hundred pairs of cooler-than-thou eyes judging every aspect of your outfit. Personally, I found this rather daunting as I have as much fashion sense as a blind Tibetan monk, but if you actually put a bit of effort into your appearance (and take your cues from NME) then you should be fine.
Ice hockey legends the Sheffield Steelers are unmissable, with tickets from £11 you’d be a fool to skate over this one. They play their home matches at Motorpoint Arena, so grab your buddies and don’t take snow for an answer.
Many people dream of travelling to exotic places, but
My skiing jacket and half-mast jeans drew a few disapproving glances and must-try-harder tuts. But it’s not just the clientele that are pretty heavily invested in appearance; obviously quite a lot of work has gone into the design of the place, and it is almost a success. It’s comfortable, spacious and tastefully done, with dim lights creating a relaxed, almost autumnal atmosphere and everything from James Brown to Radiohead on the playlist. Yet there is just a sense that the mix-and-match approach is a tad calculated; the interior tries so hard to look like it hasn’t tried at all. The low-hanging lampshades are just as likely to be found in John Lewis as they are a bric-a-brak and the worn, sagging couches could easily be a line at MFI. Thankfully, Bungalows and Bears is not another case of style over substance; home to a large and well-stocked bar, it has everything from Amstel to Old Rosie, and two guest ales available most days. There is also a substantial wine list and, if you’re feeling adventurous, a small selection of cocktails. Don’t expect it to come cheap though; a pint of Strongbow will set you back £3.45, so it’s essential to grab a discount card from the bar which puts a handful of the more popular drinks in the ‘studentfriendly’ price range. Unfortunately, there is no sort of discount on the food, which is a real shame because the handmade burgers and double- cooked Maris
Piper chips sound delicious, but with prices starting at £7.75 for a large classic burger, you better be damn hungry. On a recommendation, I went for the freshly cooked nachos as £6.95 split two ways didn’t send shockwaves through my wallet. Despite receiving said nachos within minutes, I was left a touch disappointed. The toppings were basic and plain, and the nachos were hardly cheese-heavy. It was far from a disaster, but I did expect a little bit more. The service was excellent though, with the bar staff polite, professional and knowledgeable, plus they know how to make proper cocktails. They also have a fantastic, and eclectic, history of bands playing at Bungalows and Bears, with Au Revoir Simone, Slow Club and techno genius The Field all having made appearances. Local music also gets a decent shout and there’s a handful of gigs on every month, which are always worth wandering down to. If you’re of the stylish persuasion and don’t mind paying a little bit extra for the privilege, then Bungalows and Bears is right up your street. Even if you’re not exactly interested in any sort of scene, it’s still a decent place to visit, thanks to the superb selection of drinks, excellent-sounding menu and top service. It might be worth extending your overdraft beforehand, though.
Nikki Scott with the magazine she set up when she noticed a gap in the market in South East Asia
Photo: Nikki Scott
Lore Lambein It is assessment time again, and studying asks for a lot of work and long periods sitting at the desk. Here are some practical pieces of advice to keep your body free of neck pain and back
problems. First of all, you need to adjust your chair to the right height in order to get your feet flat on the floor and your thighs parallel to the ground. You should sit right back in your
chair and keep your back straight. If you can, put a cushion by your lower back. Your knees should be set slightly above your hips, so it’s a good idea to use a foot rest if you have one. The top of your computer screen should be at eye level and should be roughtly an arm’s length away. Avoid reflection of overhead lighting or sunlight, as this can be bad for your eyes if you are also staring at a computer screen. The keyboard should be placed at about four to six inches (10-15 cm) away from the front edge of the desk to
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Squeezing a stress ball can reduce muscular tension and relieve stress, as well as improving circulation and co-ordination.
Exercise releases endorphins, which can make you feel happier and more relaxed. It also improves blood flow to the brain.
Research has shown that stroking a pet can reduce your stress levels. If you don’t have a pet, here’s an excuse to go and buy a bear.
change you want to see in the world... for some foreign travel can change their lives. Lifestyle investigates the stories of three people who sought to change and improve the world that they found.
Children at The Happy House set up by Sue Hayward in Watamu, Kenya Photo: Sue Hayward, Working for the Children of Watamu East Asia Backpacker Magazine was born. For the next few months Nikki continued her travels through Southeast Asia, filling her journal with scribbled articles and backpacker tales. She was hooked. Two years and a whole heap of door knocking later, South East Asia Backpacker Magazine is now a wellestablished free read for tourists and visitors across the region. Issue 15, the November/December edition, has just gone to print, despite the team having to battle the crocodile infested floodwaters in Bangkok. Nikki now manages a fast growing team of editors, graphic designers and marketers. Does this appeal to you? Are you a budding traveller who wishes they could turn that passion into a career? Nikki has shown that not everything about your future has to be cut and dried. Nikki’s experience is perfect food for thought for anyone wanting a career with a difference, to find out
more go to www.southeastasiabackpacker. com.
Sue Hayward – Blackpool, UK to Watamu, Kenya Who would have guessed that a brief visit to a school whilst on a holiday to Kenya could have changed someone’s life so dramatically? But this trip to Watamu, a rural village on the east coast of Kenya, did not just change one life, it changed hundreds. In 2000, Sue Hayward and her husband Dave were moved by the sight of children sat on cold stone floors being taught by teachers with no pencils, paper or desks. As soon as they returned home, the fund raising began. A year later they returned with suitcases full of stationary and £600, with which they bought 34 desks. Every year they returned, gradually equipping the school. By 2003 ‘Working for the Children of Watamu’ became a registered charity and Sue had one aim in mind, to “make a difference”. By 2007, Sue had developed three schools, putting 700 children in education.
Desk posture enable you to keep your wrists straight and rested in front of you. Your elbows should be bent in an ‘L’ shape and stay by the side of your torso. Even if you have correct desk posture nailed, you should stop regularly for a break. It is important not to spend hours upon hours cramming, you are far more likely to be productive if you have a break. Do some simple exercises such as stretching your
fingers, hands, arms and torso. Also, remember to relax your neck often by slowly flexing your head backwards an forwards and side to side. The best exercise for shoulders is to roll them backward and forward. You should aim to get up out of your chair at least once every hour for a few minutes to stretch your legs; go for a walk, go to the shop or just go into a different room. Exercise will not only help you
stretch your body out, but it will also help you to focus. Every 20 minutes, you should also relax your eyes and stop focussing on your screen. Make sure you drink some water regularly and eat healthily, as this will also help you feeling more alert and productive. Keep your posture correct and healthy, and you will reap the benefits - if not, back and neck problems could come back to haunt you.
There was also a library with 50,000 books, a music room, a science lab and a computer room, all equipped with technology those kids had previously never heard of, let alone set eyes on. The school now well equipped, Sue then turned her attention to the more disadvantaged children, the orphaned, the abandoned and the neglected. Her vision was an orphanage unlike any other, a Happy House for Watamu’s vulnerable and neglected children. After relentless fund raising and hard work from Sue and her supporters, the £250,000 Happy House was officially opened in 2010 and is now home to 54 children who, for the first time, have security, love and family. An ongoing project, the affectionately named ‘Mama Sue’ has recently open a nursery school, following her belief that ‘education is the road out of poverty’. The Happy House, dependent on its sponsored child scheme and
Talented photographer Shawn Parker
Shawn Parker at work tireless fund raising efforts, has many more children to help. It is all thanks to incredible work of a remarkable lady. Discover more at www.childrenofwatamu.net Shawn Parker – Ontario, Canada to all over the world… Having just published his debut novel in 2008, Shawn Parker decided to pack his bags and head to South Korea, in a bid to get his creative juices flowing. Noticing the vast amounts of camera-armed tourists, it didn’t take long for Shawn to join the masses. Little did he know where this would take him… Shawn became a bookworm, in a bid to not simply be an amateur with expensive equipment. Having read heaps of books and shot photo after photo, his skills developed and his potential was realised. A Korean fashion designer asked Shawn to photograph his latest collection. Having used the money to return home, it wasn’t long before Shawn returned and got his big break. The editor of a travel magazine based in Singapore heard of Shawn’s
unwanted illnesses. The first thing to consider is vitamin With the cold season C, as you can easily arriving, virus and increase your intake pathogenic bacteria are through your daily threatening to attack meals. our bodies. Vitamin C is vital There are however, for boosting your plenty of natural ways immune system, and is to boost our immune therefore an essential system and help fighting for fighting bugs.
writing talent and asked him to write a luxury travel article on Seoul. Needless to say, it was a great success. Shawn has now written over 30 travel articles and has had hundreds of his photographs published, by the likes of Lonely Planet and National Geographic. This year he has been nominated for a PATA Gold Award, a symbol of great recognition within the photography circuits. Shawn’s next step is with his new business, Flash Light Photography Expeditions, who offer workshops and photography trips around Southeast Asia, Korea and the US. The aim is not just to teach people how to use a camera, but how to appreciate the world, capturing beautiful scenery and incredible moments every single day. Check out Shawn’s expeditions at www.flashlightexpeditions.com So next time you don your backpack and set off on your travels, remember these inspirational people and see what you can do. You never know, it might just change your life forever.
Beating the bugs Start the day with a fresh lemon juice and honey diluted in a glass of water at room temperature. Try to eat more vegetables like sweet pepper, broccoli, fennel, spinach or cabbage, and finish to prepare your plate with a sprinkle of chopped parsley – easy to do and very efficient. During the day, you can snack on vitamin C rich fruits like kiwi, strawberries and satsumas. Finally, adding goji berries in your food will definitely improve your health and
energy. They can seem expensive but it is worth as only 2 tablespoons per day is enough. You can also enhance your natural defences by taking a supplement in Echinacea or bee Propolis as they have natural antibacterial properties and help maintain a wellbuilt immunity. Eucalyptus is also a strong antiseptic agent, with expectorant properties. For clearing the nose put boiling
water in a bowl and add eucalyptus oil, hold your head over the bowl and breathe deeply. If you still catch a cold, the first advice is staying warm, going in bed with a hotwater bottle and rest. Drink a lot of herbal tea – especially thyme, ginger or a mixture of cinnamon, cloves and honey. To help detoxify your body, try this tip: chop 2 garlic gloves, put it in a glass of water and swallow all of it before going to bed. It looks awful but it works very well.
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Friday November 18 2011
Lifestyle & Travel
LUM O C X E S
Fi v e day ch a l l e n g e :
Eating without cutlery
Kiss and tell? I didn’t want this article to be particularly serious, but I don’t think there is a lighthearted way to write about cheating. I have cheated on one occasion in the past, and never have I learnt so much from something in my life. I was in a long-distance relationship when I came to university. A lot of my friends from home predicted how difficult it was going to be and asked me what would happen if I met someone else. But I was adamant that would never happen. I was determined to make our relationship work and the concept of cheating never even crossed my mind. However, I never adjusted well to the long-distance relationship. I hated spending all my time missing that special someone and not being able to see them. I felt lonely, and to be honest. I missed the constant attention and affection. Then I met someone who I spoke to basically everyday and became close friends with, even though he indicated he wanted something more. One night, we got pretty drunk and kissed, and I knew from the second it happened that I didn’t want it to. Some people don’t consider kissing as cheating, but I have never felt so guilty and disgusted with myself. I couldn’t believe I had cheated on someone I loved so much, it felt like such a senseless thing to do. I was a little in shock for stooping so low, and the extent of what I had done didn’t really hit me until the day after, when I told my boyfriend face to face. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do, I couldn’t not tell him because in my mind he deserved to know. After the tears and the shouting, we talked about staying together – I could see he was so hurt but neither of us wanted to lose each other. Now, over a year on, I am still with my boyfriend and have never been happier. We both put a lot of effort in to make it work and it took a lot of time for him to trust me again, but that’s the price I had to pay. I could never hurt him or someone I love again, it causes too much pain. I still haven’t forgiven myself for what I did, but I’ve learned a lot from it. I value our relationship so much more now and I feel that if we could get through something like that kiss that wasn’t meant to be, we can get through anything. Anonymous
Faced with the challenge of five cutlery-free days, I’m feeling that I got off lightly compared to the many evil challenges the Forge Lifestyle & Travel editors could have forced on me. Of all the things to give up for almost a week, this feels like an excuse to eat chips and pizza, and skip out on the washing up. Anyone who wants to make me give up my precious Blackberry for five days will have to prise it out of my cold, dead hands, but I’m not particularly worried about suffering from the loss of my teaspoons and chopping knives. So, here are the rules: no cutlery (that’s forks, knives or spoons) for five days. Cooking utensils are allowed only for cooking purposes, while chopsticks are the only eating implements permitted.
Day One Day One starts fairly easilychicken soup straight from the cup for brunch and half a bag of popcorn before moving onto cheese on toast for tea. After being tempted out to the pub for a few drinks, I finally finish the night with a tray of chips, even shunning the plastic fork in the name of the Forge Press Five Day Challenge. Traumatically, this also means turning down gravy on my chips after I realise that I’m not quite drunk enough to lick gravy from my hands while walking down the street. Not the most nutritious diet for today, after only eating from the three main student food groups of sugar, fat and alcohol, but I’m
fairly proud for holding up during my first 24 hours.
Day Five To celebrate the end of the week and my new chopsticks and cereal licking skills - I am now the skilled master of sticking my head into my bowl of cereal to grab the last few Cheerios at record speed. I try to be extra specially inventive and eat my dinner of rice with a shot glass. While I am proud of my spectacular ingenuity, my boyfriend informs me that the sight of me chasing the rice round the plate with a shot glass is one of the ‘saddest things he’s ever seen.’ I decide not to immediately break up with him as he clearly doesn’t appreciate how painful a cutlery-free life is.
Day Two After another day of cereal and cheese-based meals, I decide that I will end up attacking my own face with the cheese grater through sheer food-boredom if I have to eat cheese on toast again. In my quest for real, nutritious food, I make a stir-fry and brave using the chop sticks for the first time. After half an hour of stabbing at the chicken in a fit of noodle-related rage, I actually start to be able to use them. Maybe not in the smooth, sophisticated and multicultural way I was hoping for, but I have never appreciated being able to get food into my mouth more. Day Three I try to start the day with a lovely cuppa – only to realise I have no way of getting the tea bag out of the mug. Finally, I manage to fish the tea bag out with slightly burnt fingers. Epic breakthrough comes when I find out I can get around the tea bag problem by stealing my flatmate’s expensive blended tea bags, which come with a string attached. While I’m not sure just how much my flatmate will appreciate this when she finds out, I am relieved to be feeling like my tea-addicted self again. Starting to realise I might not have thought through the true impact of teaspoons on my life. Day Four My trusty chopsticks in my handbag, I head down to London for the day with my fellow news editors.
Instead of standing by me and the sacrifices I’ve made in the name of journalism, they all laughed at me instead. The idea of having to eat in public all day did fill me with terror – you can’t pretend that licking your plate isn’t a slight social faux pas - but we headed to Chinatown for dinner so I could use my chop sticks without looking too strange. Unfortunately, this also meant I spent a lot of the meal waiting for a Chinese person to jump out and laugh at me for using the chopsticks wrongly. I’m beginning to miss the days when my social life wasn’t being destroyed by the paranoia caused by lack of cutlery.
Eating without cutlery seriously limits your food choices, makes eating anything take half an hour longer than usual and you’ll probably end up alone and friendless because nobody normal wants to be seen eating a meal with you. It’s messy and annoying, but I can’t pretend I didn’t learn new things and discover my own mealtime inventiveness. Most of these skills are genuinely useless in every way – when was the last time you had to get cooked rice out of the bottom on a shot glass? There is absolutely no chance I will be doing it again in a hurry. Knives and forks are truly magical, wonderful things that were invented for a reason – so that we could have breakfast in the morning, knowing we won’t have to risk getting our head stuck in the bowl. If nothing else, that is a basic guarantee I want in my life.
When does food really go bad? Will Coley With food prices soaring, the last thing you want to do is waste what may be perfectly decent food under the illusion that it has gone off. Most people misunderstand food labelling, and as a result each year in the United Kingdom we dispose of 8.3 million tonnes of food – the equivalent of 128 aircraft carriers! Sixty per cent of which didn’t need to be thrown away in the first place. As a rule of thumb, the ‘best before’ date is based on the taste of the food, while the ‘use by’ date pertains to safety and therefore should be taken more seriously. However, these dates “include a wide margin of safety,” says Jeanne Goldberg, professor at Tufts University, Massachusetts. So, what are the ‘real’ indicators for telling when the content of your fridge is no longer safe to consume?
Bread Will go hard and mold will grow, however when toasted this isn’t always noticeable.
Chicken Out of all meats, poultry is the one to be most wary of, as out-of-date chicken can harbour the dangerous salmonella bacteria. However, it is easy enough to tell when your breasts have gone bad.
The surface of the meat becomes sticky and slimy and has a distinctive pungent smell.
Eggs A clever trick to tell whether it is still safe to eat is to place the egg in question in water. A fresh egg should sink below the water line, whereas an out-ofdate egg will float, as air is able to make it through the porous shell. Fish The skin goes dry, the eyes sunken, and the gills go brown.
Fruit and vegetables As a general rule, gone-off fruit and vegetables will be limp, yellow or brown in colour and feel softer than usual to the touch. Not all fruit and veg need to be kept in the fridge; tomatoes, bananas, citrus fruits, avocados and berries are better to be left out Milk Has a very short ‘best before‘ period. When milk goes off, it smells sickly sour and a crust may form around the container lid.
Red meat As meat goes off, it will get more red in colour, and spoilt meat will be grey, green or brown. It will also have a distinctive ammonia-like odour.
Yogurt Will taste like cheese when spoilt. Wine Wine grows mold if it is left exposed to air, so make sure you don’t leave it standing around.
To avoid wasting your food, simply freeze it as this stops the bacterial breakdown of the food. Defrost it properly to avoid food poisoning. The best way is to place the packaged food in hot, but not boiling water, or to microwave it at a very low heat. On returning from reading week, I’m sure many of you have found out-of-date food sitting in your fridge. Before you chuck it out, don’t just follow the printed date, but double-check. You may save yourself a few quid.
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Lifestyle & Travel
Health and Fitness
Shake me up, before you go-go The truth about protein shakes
Will Sanders For those of you who view protein shakes as a recent phenomenon, it will come as a surprise that they have been knocking around since the 1950s. In those sixty years, though, protein shakes have really caused a stir, courting controversy and producing a love or hate chasm on a scale which could knock Marmite off its perch. So, are they the hero or the villain of the nutritional world? In reality, there is no black and white answer. This can be confirmed by the briefest of Google searches; the murky waters of the protein shake discussion are littered with dubious scientific evidence, irrelevant case studies and some genuinely ridiculous advice. The sensible debate can be summarised as follows: protein shakes are a useful tool for athletes, but should not be seen as a regular meal substitute. The general consensus is that protein shakes offer a good way to aid muscle recovery. Many people, myself included, increase the protein levels in their diet in order to assist the body in
coping with the after-effects of exercise. Usually this is associated with body building, as the gym-going types strive to increase performance and muscle mass, but protein shakes are actually used alongside a range of sports.
Protein is the building block of muscles, and shakes used after hard workouts can help in recovery and rebuilding, allowing you to make the most of your workout. There are some grounds for this usage, as it is generally believed that athletes require more than the
A trip to the gym is supposed to be a rewarding experience but more often than not, it can end up becoming a style nightmare- and that’s before you’ve even left the house. The pressure is piled onto you anyway at the gym, when you’re working out surrounded by people, so you don’t want to feel that all eyes are on you because of what you’re wearing. You need to be relaxed and comfortable in your work-out clothes, but you also want them to compliment your body and ooze style. There are a few tips for both men and women on how to wear clothes that are both stylish and practical for a sweaty slog at the gym. Also, nice workout clothes will fill you with confidence and automatically inspire you to hit that treadmill. Make sure you wear clothes that breathe. Your gym clothes should be made from a breathable material, such as polypropylene, especially if you’re planning on working up a sweat. This fabric helps to evaporate sweat and let’s face it; sweat patches are not a good look! Never wear clothing made out of rubber or plastic-based materials, which keep sweat from evaporat-
ing and raises your body temperature during a workout. Wear clothes that fit well and provide support. Make sure your clothes fit well; too tight can be restricting, and too big can get in the way. Girls, make sure your sports top comes with proper support. Invest in stripy sports socks. An affordable and versatile gem, striped sports socks can add a bit of fun to your work-out outfit. Ditch your drabby duds and get ready to clash your colours. Get out your neon brights with, well, more neon brights for a hot trend that is stylish in and out of the gym this season. Try mixing a colourful top with grey bottoms for your morning boot camp class, or spring for a pair of flashy sneakers for your jaunt around the tennis court. The pop of colour is not only clean and eye catching; it could also provide some inspiration into jazzing up your workout routine. If you really fancy embracing this 80’sinspired vibe, add a sun-visor to your outfit but be prepared for more looks than usual! If you’re not sure about going all-out, stick with a graphic t-shirt and plain bottoms.
Common sense is also needed when planning your diet, as protein shakes don’t offer a wide variety of nutrients and, as a result, are not suitable for regular use a meal substitute. Moreover, studies have shown that they may contain contaminants which would have a toxic effect on the body if consumed too frequently. Links have been made with an increased risk of liver cancer in overweight individuals, and some studies have suggested that long-term use of shakes may cause kidney damage. For me, these are relatively minor concerns – after all, doesn’t everything pose a health risk these days? Just be sensible and adopt the ‘everything in moderation’ approach. On the whole, then, protein shakes make an excellent post-gym beverage and are well worth a try for those who are keen on buffing up. As part of a balanced diet, shakes can improve the results of your hard work without any major downsides. That hard work still needs to happen though, so leave the shake on the shelf unless you’re training regularly.
Controversies in contemporary fashion
Work up a sweat in style Emma Robinson
average person’s recommended intake of 45-55g of protein. Protein shakes are designed to be easily absorbed and replenish the muscles of lost glycogen, which is basically a form of energy storage. One of the downsides is that they can be expensive and it is a challenge to find a product that tastes good, particularly if you mix the powder with water as opposed to milk. Personally, I have to confess that I have been guilty of buying one of the more expensive brands of protein shake for several years, purely on the basis that it tasted great and therefore, I was more likely to actually drink it. Perhaps this shouldn’t be the decisive factor, but friends of mine have strayed from the beaten track and acquired mixes which, in all honesty, don’t taste as if they are designed for human consumption. If you’re taking the protein shake route, it’s also worth checking out the ingredients to see how much protein the product contains and what other nasty additions there are. Some manufacturers test each batch for banned substances for extra peace of mind. In general, just use your common sense when purchasing.
Sabreen Ali There is a line in the fashion world that represents the difference between what is socially acceptable and what is not. This line is dynamic, continuously shifting as perceived by designers, photographers and the public. Most fashion campaigns have perfected the art of toeing this line, pushing the couture envelope enough to stimulate and inspire but avoiding any real scandal. Occasionally, whether intentionally or not, the balance is broken and fashion controversy erupts. It is exactly this aspect of fashion that makes it exciting, the drama in the context and styling that draws your eye in the glossies and the runway shows. Originality is everything; even established fashion houses require innovation in presenting their collections to the public. This need for uniqueness can lead to the nefarious realm of exploitation. Vogue Paris sparked debate in September 2010 for their gift-guide spread, which featured girls as young as ten in full make-up and stilettos posing provocatively on beds and couches. Debate regarding the over-sexualisation of children ensued, and the shoot is rumoured to have caused ex-editor Carine Roitfeld’s sudden departure from the magazine. It’s puzzling really - what benefit exists in asking children to pose for these pictures? Age appropriate these are not; they’re the furthest thing from Gap Kids. Clad in skin-tight designer garments, these girls even come complete with a model-esque pout. Is fashion so attention-starved that it must use, or even abuse, children to make a point? Actress Hailee Steinfeld’s recent appointment as the face of Miu Miu lead to similar criticisms. At age fourteen she is considered a young choice even for modelling industry standards, and many have questioned the message this is sending out to young girls regarding body image, maturity and self-expectation. Acknowledgement of the moral dilemma is not
universal, with some saying that these young people are consenting, but this could be interpreted as an oversimplification of a concept with far reaching implications. Children and teenagers are easily susceptible to pressure from peers and adults. How can we be sure that the choices they make are really entirely their own?Vogue India delivered a comparable faux-pas three years ago with an editorial shoot featuring highend labels being modeled by ‘average’ Indian people. In a country with such a huge divide between rich and poor, and with seemingly unscalable poverty, the pictures are a cruel irony. The magazine’s feeble defence was that these people are their potential target customers for the future, who they hope will one day be toting a Birkin bag and Burberry coat. It doesn’t take long to recognise this as a fantastically absurd notion, rendering the subjects as little more than props for the luxury goods. Fashionable? I think not.How far can we go in the name of artistic license? If fashion becomes safe and benign, it quickly translates to boring. Conversely, creativity need not be offensive or in bad taste. Controversy may bring publicity, but also negativity, tainting the inclusive message that fashion represents.
FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011 www.forgetoday.com
PUZZLES & HUMOUR
Coffee Break Outside the Union: Girl: “She loves toes, just stick a toe in front of her and she’ll nibble it.”
The real news this fortnight: The Most Expensive Tea in the World
In the Union Shop: Guy: “I am obsessed with jam, just obsessed with the stuff.” Outside Plug: Girl: “Does ‘F’ stand for friend, I can’t believe I’m Plug’s friend.”
The strange news this fortnight: More proof that Bigfoot exists Apparently the United States of America expedition launched and Canada, so this new after the Bigfoot information is rather Conference held in exciting. Moscow has revealed John Bindernagel went evidence that the on to say: “We didn’t feel creature inhabits like the trees we saw in Kemerovo and is Siberia had been done building ‘nests’. by a man or another This evidence is that mammal.” they have found trees So that puts pay to the twisted together, which fact that in could have every self-respecting just been a practical joke, bigfoot expert knows is of course. the beginnings of building There have been many a nest. explanations for the yeti The twisted trees myth over the years, and have been seen before many reported sightings. and related to the The evidence is yeti creature, as John confusing and the sighting Bindernagel explains: unreliable, but yet the “Twisted trees like this myth lives on. have also been observed The scientists who in North America and attended the Bigfoot they could fit with the theory that Bigfoot makes nests. “The nests we have looked at are built around trees twisted together into an arch shape.” Apparently the yeti is normally thought to inhabit the Pacific Photo: Bindernagel/Barcroft Northwest of the
Conference in Moscow even declared that they have 95 per cent of the evidence needed to prove the yeti’s existence. One explanation of the yeti sightings is the Himalayan Brown Bear. The bear (sometimes referred to as the DzuTeh) is thought to be the source of the legend of the Yeti. In 1986, South Tyrolean mountaineer Reinhold Messner claimed to have a face-to-face encounter with a Yeti and claims to have actually killed one. According to Messner, the Yeti is actually the endangered Himalayan brown bear, that can walk upright or on all fours. Reportedly, belief in the yeti has been around for hundreds of years, with the preBuddhists. The Lepcha people who worshipped a “Glacier Being” as a God of the Hunt.
An Yanshi, a college lecturer, is trying to make the most expensive tea in world - made from panda poop. The mad wildlife expert has collected five tons (yes, five tons!) of panda poo, and believes the natural fertiliser will create a unique blend that will make tea connoisseurs weep over its aroma. An predicts that he will be able to sell the tea for up to £50,000 per kilo. The world’s most expensive tea at the moment costs a mere £100 per pound, and is made from the equally delightful partly digested beans that are excreted by the Indonesian civet cat. An says that ‘Pandas have a very poor digestive system and only absorb about 30 per cent of everything they eat. That means their excrement is rich in fibres.”
and nutrients.’ Photo: Kevin Dooley/Flickr He went on to explain that apparently ‘It has a mature, nutty taste and a very distinctive aroma while it’s brewing.’ An collects his panda poop from the Giant Panda breeding centre in Chengdu, Sichuan province, southern China, and is wanting to gain his first Guinness World Record once he sells the first batch of his tea.
and amazing. Liu has reportedly had one potentially serious disaster when he managed to swallow one of his slippery pets. Luckily for him the acid in his stomach killed the snake before it could do any damage to his insides. The snake charmer is surely charmed, but I’m not sure it is a trick any of us should try at home. Maybe just stick to the age old trick using the rather harmless pasta alternative. YouTube: Liu Fei pushing snake in his nose
Crossword Puzzle: 1
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Yogi Bear Parody
The real news this fortnight: Spaghetti Snake Charmer Liu Fei , an inhabitant of the Jiangxi Province in east China has a rather different act to the traditional snake charmer. The entertainer is able to force poisonous snakes through his nose and out of his mouth. Liu has been doing this act for 30 years without a serious mishap, and is even able to do it with two snakes one through each nostril - if the mood so strikes him. There is even a YouTube video of the 53-year-old performing his trick, which is equal parts horrifying
omg, Have you seen...?
10. Airhead, an attractive but stupid yound woman (5) 11. A salt of hydriodic acid (6) 12. A number of other things or persons unspecified (8) 13. Unqualified, incompetent (5)
2. Pertaining to the menses (9) 3. Extended period of leave from work (10) 4. A picture, as of a scene (7) 5. Psychotic, crazed (5) 6. Harry ___, US
Weird Al Yankovic never fails to find the funny side of a song. In this marvellous parody he manages to turn a sweet cartoon character into a kinky bear. It has to be heard to believe it, and is irritatingly catchy (being a bad song to sing under your breath). YouTube: Yogi Bear Parody, choose the second one from the top.
Random Fact of the Week: Seven per cent of Americans don’t know the first nine words of the American anthem, but know the first seven of the Canadian anthem. Five percent of Canadians don’t know the first seven words of the Canadian anthem, but know the first nine of the American anthem.
magician and escapologist (7) 7. A narrow brassiere (7) 10. Alessandro ___, Italian painter (1444 1510) (10) 15. Disreputable person, unkept child (10) 16. To join by stitches (4) 17. Space, geographical region (4) 18. Music direction, very loud (10) 20. Someone who believes in the existence of secret, mysterious, or supernatural agencies (9) 22. Part decoration, multiply at a rapid rate (7) 23. The father of Odysseus (7) 24. The Virgin Mary (7) 16. Make amends, reparation (5)
FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011 www.forgetoday.com
PUZZLES & HUMOUR
With Holly Wilkinson More Puzzles:
‘Chewbaccuary’, the female ‘mo’
The Mo Bros are back in force, and they’re facial hair is growing daily. The brotherhood’s members have been threatened by their partners with no sex for a month, they’ve been ridiculed by bosses, colleagues and clients, and they have resisted the urge to just get rid of it all. They are stalwart in their determination to raise awareness of prostate cancer. However, what would our better halves do if women suddenly started a campaign to raise awareness of cervical cancer by being sponsored to do a ‘Chewbacca Month’, a month where we let our legs, armpits, everything go au naturel for the sake of charity. I’m not sure it would go down with quite as much panache. Imagine it though, a whole month without a razor. Some would say bliss, no more hassle but others would truly find this a challenge. The chances of you getting ‘lucky’ will proportionally decrease with the length of the hairs on your legs, as
each day passes the chances will grow slimmer and slimmer. However, such a radical action against the preened and peacocked world of celebrities would surely be a statement in its self. The most important question would be when would such a hallowed event take place? Obviously the summer is
Image: pvf-/Flickr out, hairy legs on the beach are embarrassing at any point let alone the hair being so long it forms a soft fur coat. December has got to be out because of Christmas
and New Year’s Eve, no one can pull off the look of ‘Oh, I like your black tights’, ‘But I’m not wearing any’. The boys have coined November, and sometimes bare legs can be revealed in October. Valentine’s Day falls in February and that is miserable enough without imitating a Neanderthal man. So that leaves January and March. Personally I’d chose March – hairy birthdays aren’t on my wish list – but January does make sense. Think about it, there are exams to distract you and Christmas is over so there is a feeling of the calm before the storm. A month to exhale and relax (slightly) before the whirlwind of the new year sweeps you up. So ‘Chewbaccuary’ could happen next, but will it? No, women pride themselves on their appearance (just watch the Boots adverts) but then do we need to grow ridiculous amounts of bodily hair to raise awareness? After all, Jade Goody has left a pretty indelible mark.
Hot Baroness Trumpington gives a fellow peer a twofingered salute in the House of Lords - YouTube it if you fancy a chuckle. Toy Story inspired clothes by Bossini have been released now we can all look like those cute little aliens. Pamela Anderson has been cast as the Virgin Mary in the Canadian TV show ‘A Russell Peters Christmas Special’ the jokes will never end.
The Useful news this fortnight:
Knitting, dying art or new hobby?
Is knitting the new gaming? Knitting is a bizarre hobby, it involves twisting bits of wool together in intricate knots and loops in a bid to form articles of clothing, or if you’re like me a very, very long and tatty scarf. It’s fun though, no, fun is the wrong word, it’s addictive. Fidgety fingers need worry no more, as long as you’re not too fussy about stitch density and evenness. Chewed fingernails and torn up scraps of paper need never happen. Is it unisex? Addicts would say ‘yes’, as most addicts
do when asked about their favourite fix, but in reality can you see rows of men on the bus knitting (which is a hysterical mental picture)? N o , probably not. However, knitting has one more trick up it’s lopsided and hole-y sleeve - it’s cheap. In fact it’s free once you’ve bought a set of knitting needles (which can double as kebab skewers) and a ball of wool (which doesn’t really have any other use). Finally though, the
1. Form a slipknot and place over the end of the first knitting needle.
clincher is that you end up making things you can actually use, or give to a grandparent who just love that it is homemade. Parents, aunts, uncles, everyone loves handmade, scrappy gifts. They’re ‘special’ and ‘unique’, apparently. So if you’re considering taking up a new hobby this Christmas, then give knitting a try. After all it is free.
2. Hold the needle that has the cast-on stitches on it in your left hand. Insert the righthand needle (RN) from front to back into the first stitch on the left-hand needle (LN).
Coffee Break’s Word of the Fortnight: flibbertigibbet (n.) - 1. A chattering or flighty, light-headed person. (Origin: 1425–75, Britain; late Middle English flepergebet, flipergebet; reduplicative compound of obscure origin)
Inflation falls to five per cent (which is good in case someone doesn’t realise). Twilight mania begins again with the release of the fourth film installment today.
Brad Pitt is quitting acting in three years to focus on becoming a producer - please don’t Brad, we love you! Reading week has ended.
3. Form a loop by wrapping the yarn under and around the RN.
4. With the RN, carefully pull the loop through the stitch on the LN so the loop is in front of the work. With the new stitch securely on the RN, slip the first or “old” knit stitch over and off the tip of the LN.
www.forgetoday.com // firstname.lastname@example.org FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
Debate: Should footballers get a winter break, or should they keep off the turkey?
A break won’t fix Fixture list creates England’s problems huge disadvantage Stuart Hill
Every year the debate over whether or not English football should adopt a winter break rears its head. However, I can say with a good deal of certainty that it would not improve our national team’s performance or solve niggling injury problems which occur towards the end of the season, not to mention the fact that it would take away what is, for me, one of the highlights of the English football calendar – the Boxing Day fixture.
“England’s problems are much deeper than fatigue” It has been claimed that our national team fails at international tournaments because we don’t have a winter break. Do me a favour. Yes, other countries including world and European champions Spain have a winter break. But their’s lasts less than two weeks – is this really going to make a difference? England’s tournament failures are down to problems much deeper than fatigue. Unfortunately this
column does not give me enough space to explain deep-rooted problems in the England team. But, in brief, problems with player development at a young age, poor tactics and, simply, an inability to keep possession are all more important factors than fatigue. At club level, the size of squads these days is so large, allowing managers to rotate their players to keep them fresh. And with the commercial
side of the game so prevalent today, it is a nailed-on certainty that teams would go flying out to Asia, the Middle East and the United States to play games and promote their brand and, in doing so, contradict the reasons behind the winter break. Then there are the logistical problems. A further backlog of fixtures in the second half of the season would be created or otherwise, the close season would have to be shortened and the season would last a month longer than the
Select BUCS fixtures
break would be a quick fix to many deeprooted problems just shows sheer naivety.
Women’s firsts vs University of Bradford firsts FENCING Men’s firsts vs University of Leeds firsts Women’s firsts vs Newcastle University firsts
WEDNESDAY NOVEMBER 23
Men’s firsts at Leeds Met seconds
Men’s firsts at Leeds Met thirds
Men’s seconds vs Northumbria fourths
Women’s firsts vs Northumbria University firsts
Women’s firsts vs University of Leeds firsts
BASKETBALL Men’s firsts vs Sheffield Hallam seconds
current one – which would undoubtedly be worse for fatigue problems. If fatigue really is a problem, the only answer is to reduce the size of the Premier League to 18 teams. While it has many proponents within the game, the belief that a winter
Women’s seconds at Northumbria seconds Hockey at Goodwin.
favours by the FA’s archaic, stiff upper lip, it’s-not-that-cold attitude to the winter
it’s just England. If just about every other 20-team league can do it, why can’t ours? Some have questioned the effectiveness of a winter break in keeping players fit for summer tournaments. A study by Uefa in 2004 aimed to get to the bottom of this, and found teams that had a winter break experienced significantly fewer injuries towards the end of the season. Premier League teams were likely to have twice as many injuries in the second half of the season, and four times as many in the final
three months. There is a perfectly logical explanation for the injury ‘curse’ that always strikes England prior to any major tournament, and it doesn’t require a nation collectively massaging the metatarsals of Wayne Rooney voodoo dolls to break it. The endless and seemingly universal desire for a winter break among Premier League managers should have prompted the FA to at least examine the issue further, having inexplicably dropped the agenda after Sven-Goran Eriksson appeared to have made inroads. Fabio Capello, a man well travelled enough to know the difference a break can make, has also called for a change to the current system. Yet still, the FA show no signs of shifting their stance on the issue. There isn’t even any need to dismantle the muchloved Boxing Day round of fixtures. Simply introduce a twoweek Premier League break in January, and push the beginning of the season back a couple of weeks. The Football League, having more fixtures, could continue as normal and would reap much-needed financial benefits of more fans – and, crucially, television stations – getting their football fix at lower league clubs during the winter break. This way, everyone’s a winner. Well, everyone except Bobby Zamora.
Mixed firsts vs Durham University seconds
Women’s firsts at Leeds Met thirds
Men’s firsts vs Durham University seconds
Women’s firsts vs Durham University seconds
Jack Burnett After England’s unspectacular yet satisfying friendly victories against Spain and Sweden, now is the time to be cautiously optimistic about Euro 2012. This feeling will inevitably snowball into the entire nation putting their life savings on England – who, as if to highlight their limitations, played Bobby Zamora against Sweden – winning the tournament. While this may be unrealistic, the national side’s chances aren’t done any
HOCKEY Men’s firsts vs Liverpool John Moores firsts Women’s firsts vs University of Manchester firsts LACROSSE Men’s firsts at Sheffield Hallam firsts Women’s firsts vs Newcastle University firsts
fixture list. Though it won’t win Zamora a medal at the Euros, a winter break in the Premier League could be the difference between a humiliating exit at the hands of Greece and a dignified loss to the Germans on penalties. Up until recently, the English and Portuguese leagues were – apologies to fans of Scottish football – the only major European leagues that didn’t implement a break. Now
“There is a perfectly logical explanation for the injury ‘curse’ that always strikes England”
Men’s firsts vs University of Bradford firsts RUGBY UNION Men’s firsts at University of York firsts
TENNIS Men’s firsts at Bangor University firsts VOLLEYBALL
Women’s firsts vs Durham University firsts
Men’s firsts at Newcastle University firsts
Women’s firsts at Newcastle University firsts
Men’s firsts vs University of Leeds firsts Women’s firsts vs Durham University firsts
WATER POLO Women’s firsts vs Lancaster University firsts
FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
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No cupset at Bramall Lane as Blades progress Football FA Cup first round Sheffield United Oxford United
Jay Allan Ched Evans scored a brace as Sheffield United advanced to the second round of the FA Cup at the expense of League Two outfit Oxford United, running out comfortable 3-0 winners. The Welsh international put his side into an early lead with a neat finish into the bottom corner after the ball landed fortuitously at his feet from Richard Cresswell’s miscued overhead kick.
The Blades striker then doubled his side’s lead within 19 minutes, rifling in a delightful free-kick from twenty yards. Oxford United boss Chris Wilder, a former fans’ favourite at Bramall Lane, brought on top scorer James Constable at halftime to change his side’s fortunes and add some firepower that was severely lacking in the first half. And Constable almost rewarded his manager immediately with a fine header that was saved by Sheffield United goalkeeper Steve Simonsen. But the visitors offered little going forward in truth, and were made to pay for their lack of ambition with a Ryan Flynn strike after some disastrous defending from Wilder’s men.
It was a much needed win for Danny Wilson’s men after their gut-wrenching penalty shootout defeat at the hands of Bradford City in the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy. It was also a performance that was easy on the eye, full of slick and quick passing that belied their League One status. Ched Evans was the hub of all their good work, even though his first goal had a great element of luck behind it. Stephen Quinn, who was impressive throughout, hit a looping cross into the box that was comically ill-judged by striker Richard Cresswell, failing to connect with his overhead kick. It left Evans with the easy duty of prodding the loose ball home.
The second goal, however, was pure class. Evans, buoyed after his first goal, smashed in a low free-kick that left Oxford United goalkeeper Ryan Clarke with no chance. It should have been a lot worse for the visitors, with the Blades missing a whole series of chances against a side that looked defeated before they had even kicked a ball. Evans missed a great chance, bullying his way past Oxford United defender Paul McLaren before seeing his shot well saved by Clarke. Quinn was also guilty of the same profligacy as his teammate, poking the ball at Clarke from close range. The second half proved little
better for the visitors, with Sheffield United continuing to dominate proceedings. Oxford United did have a glimmer of hope however when Constable headed the ball towards Simonsen’s goal, but the ex-Stoke City goalkeeper was equal to his effort. The visitors looked exhausted, and it was the turn of substitute Ryan Flynn, who came on for Quinn, to make those tiring legs pay. He smashed a loose ball into the top corner after Clarke failed to deal with Harry Maguire’s cross. The Blades will now face Torquay United in the second round at Bramall Lane on December 3/4.
Owls through to next round Football FA Cup first round Morecambe Sheffield Wednesday
Ched Evans, left, scored twice as Sheffield United comfortably beat Oxford United.
Photos: Blades Sports Photography
Sheffield Wednesday managed to evade an upset in their first round FA Cup tie as they defeated League Two side Morecambe. Wednesday will now play either Aldershot or Maidenhead in the next round after Chris O’Grady’s header settled the tie at the Globe Arena. Both sides are enjoying the heights of their respective leagues but it was evident that Wednesday are a league above, as they controlled the early stages and enjoyed the freedom that Morecambe - whose players sported moustaches or mohawks in aid of Movember - were allowing them. Their pressure was rewarded in the 18th minute. A neat interchange between Chris Lines and O’Grady led to Lines bending the ball into the bottom corner of the net from outside the box. The coastal wind was playing a major part in the game as the Shrimps struggled to break from their own half and failed to adapt to playing the ball into feet. The home side made the tie more competitive after the break with a greater urgency to their build-up play. A dipping driven shot from Laurence Wilson clipped the crossbar, raising optimism amongst the home support. But Morecambe’s second half resurgence was wiped out almost immediately by the eventual winner. O’Grady out-jumped an onrushing Barry Roche from a looping James O’Connor cross to put Wednesday in a commanding position. The game became a cup tie on the hour mark as the home side were awarded a soft penalty for a Chris Lines’ handball. Laurence Wilson made it six from six for the season from the spot. The expected onslaught of Morecambe attacks never materialised and the Owls remained threatening on the break. Wednesday survived a late scare from an offside Danny Carlton header to progress to the next round.
www.forgetoday.com // firstname.lastname@example.org FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
Cricketers book Lord’s place Men’s cricket firsts BUCS Indoor Cup
Will Aitkenhead The University of Sheffield men’s cricket team have reached the national finals of the BUCS Indoor Cup for the first time in their history, having beaten Sheffield Hallam and then Durham at Headingley to clinch their place at Lord’s. After already beating Leeds Met and Bradford to get to the regional finals, Sheffield were once more drawn in a difficult group and would have to beat two very strong sides if they were to progress. In the first game Hallam won the toss, choosing to bowl first as Chris Murrall opted to go with four frontline bowlers. Chris Hooper and Mark Williams both continued their fine form with the bat as they quickly reached 25 to retire and set a fine platform to build on. A series of run-outs threatened to stall Sheffield’s progress but
the return of Hooper hurried the rate along, and when Williams returned he executed excellent gap management to keep the scoreboard moving. Hooper finished with 49 and Williams 37 as Sheffield set a very challenging total of 130 from their 12 overs. Hallam struggled to start as Ali Haynes picked up a wicket, and then a stunning run-out from Williams in the same over left Hallam 27-2. The Hallam skipper was scoring freely, however, and he soon retired to leave it 62-3 from six overs. Some very tight bowling from Chris Charles and Haynes kept Hallam below the rate, with Hallam needing 50 off the last 4 overs. Heading into the penultimate over, Hallam had one wicket remaining and 31 to win. A couple of dropped catches meant it went to the last over with 21 required. There were to be no heroics from Hallam, however, as Haynes took the catch to bowl Hallam out for115 and send the Sheffield crowd wild. In the second game Sheffield faced a very strong Durham side,
which included Kenyan opening batsman Seren Waters and several MCCU players. Murrall won the toss and opted to bowl first, and an excellent performance in the field managed to restrict Durham to just 85. Hooper was superb with the new ball, taking 2-17 and Haynes picked up the scalp of Waters, returning miserly figures of 1-15. It was a nerve-wracking chase throughout, not made any easier after Hooper went early and then Murrall was run out, making the score 36-2 off 4 overs. Williams retired once again, bringing Peter Mounstephen to the crease but he too was soon run out. Charles didn’t hang around long either to leave the score 62-4 off 9, with Haynes and Williams at the crease. With 15 needed off the last two overs, Durham bowled three dot balls to pile the pressure on, but Haynes didn’t panic and the experience of Williams was key as they took it down to just 11 needed off the last over. Excellent running between the wickets meant two were needed from the last two balls; when it
flicked Williams on legs, Haynes called him through for the winning runs and a place in the finals, sparking wild celebrations from the Sheffield side. Skipper Murrall said afterwards: “What a day for the cricket club. The guys adapted well to the change of environment and raised their games for the big
day. Each and every one of the lads who has played can be proud of what they have achieved. “It is a truly remarkable achievement for us to reach the last six of the national cup and there is absolutely no reason why they can’t go on to win the cup at Lord’s on January 25.”
Sheffield’s cricket side, who have reached the cup finals at Lords.
Uni Rowers impress Derby defeat for men’s tennis Rowing
Anthony Hart Sheffield’s novice rowers took part in their first head race this year in Lincoln. There were 24 rowers from Sheffield University Rowing Club (SURC) taking part in the event. The prospect of a head race is daunting to most, let alone beginners, and often entered into sceptically. However, this was all forgotten once the race was underway. The women’s eight had placed second out of five crews, and the men’s eight fourth out of eight, impressive results for new rowers.
Furthermore, the mixed eight that the club entered was successful in beating Lincoln’s men’s second eight. The atmosphere of a head race is perhaps the most rewarding part of the event and all who participated weren’t shy in showing their enthusiasm. This is the earliest point of the season in which the club have entered novices in a head race, a decision which the club believes can be “attributed to their dedication and considerable improvement over that last few weeks.” The seniors will face stiff competition when they race at the York Small Boats Head on November 20.
BUCS round-up Anthony Hart The netball firsts, current holders of the Northern Conference Cup, reached the last 32 of the Northern Conference Cup with a crushing 82-12 win over Teesside seconds at Goodwin. Meanwhile, the men’s lacrosse team were awarded their first league win of the season in unusual circumstances after a walkover against St Andrews. The women’s tennis team maintained their strong start to the season with a 10-2 win over Leeds seconds. They sit level on points at the top of Northern League 2B with Newcastle firsts and Durham thirds. On the road, the women’s football firsts ran out 4-2 winners against Sunderland. They can go top of Northern League 2B next Wednesday when they take on Leeds firsts. The women’s basketball side lost their unbeaten record, with a heavy defeat to York firsts. The final score was 70-47 and lost top spot in the Northern League 2B to their opponents. Further up the A1 the women’s
badminton team drew their tie against Newcastle 4-4. It is the second consecutive game in which they have had to settle for a share of the spoils, having being held to a draw by Hallam two weeks ago. The women’s fencing team also experienced their first loss of the season, with a narrow 111-108 loss to Northumbria. There were mixed fortunes for the hockey first teams. The men edged out a 1-0 victory against Manchester’s firsts, but the women found themselves on the end of a 4-3 scoreline when they played Newcastle. Both teams sit second in their respective leagues. The rugby league side secured their third victory of the season, with a 34-26 win over Huddersfield, while the women’s rugby union team fell just short as they went down 12-10 to Edinburgh. They are yet to win in the Premier North division this season. The women’s lacrosse team were beaten 12-7 by Newcastle seconds, but are still fourth in Northern League 1A.
Men’s tennis firsts BUCS League 1A University of Sheffield Sheffield Hallam
Stuart Hill The Uni men’s tennis first team succumbed to their fourth Northern League 1A defeat out of four at the hands of rivals Sheffield Hallam at the Hallamshire Tennis and Squash Club. Hallam won all singles rubbers to claim a comfortable victory as Uni continue to struggle after the loss of key players at the end of last year. Play was delayed during the game after a comical moment involving Hallam number three Paul Nicholls. Smashing the ball high at the wall in frustration, it
hit the clock which was knocked to the ground, shattering courtside. There was some satisfaction for Uni as Jamie Williams and Greg Bacon won the thrilling second doubles rubber on a champion’s tie-break. Unfortunately though, it was mere consolation as it was the only rubber won by Uni. In the singles, Yasen Tsanev, David Charlton, Bacon and Williams were all beaten comprehensively in straight sets. A strong Hallam side didn’t allow the Uni players to settle into their games, making it a frustrating afternoon. Only glimpses of Uni’s best was on show – including some impressive single-handed backhand winners from Williams and big forehands from Bacon – but, despite battling performances, Hallam had the contest wrapped up before the start of the doubles. The home side continued to
show why they are one of the favourites to win the league in the first doubles rubber as Tsanev and Charlton were easily swept aside. That result left it down to Williams and Bacon to salvage some pride in the second doubles rubber as, at that point, Uni were yet to win a set. They duly delivered, taking the match to a champions tie-break at one set all in the most exciting match of the day. The tie-break went the distance, too, with Uni coming through 1210. But it was too little too late in the context of the tie. Uni will be aiming to pick themselves up before their long trip to play Bangor next week. It promises to be an important match and gives Uni a real chance to pick up their first points of the season, with Bangor the only team below Uni due to a points deduction.
Uni have lost all four league games this season and could fare no better against Hallam.
Photo: Stuart Hill
FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
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Sheffield hit six in crushing cup victory Men’s football firsts BUCS Northern Conf. Cup University of Sheffield Newcastle University
Ollie Turner The University of Sheffield men’s football firsts cruised into the next round of the BUCS National Conference Cup with an empathic 6-0 victory over Newcastle University seconds at Norton. The dominant performance from the Sheffield firsts was
capped by two goals each for Will Doyle, Josh Thompson and Tolua. Sheffield started brightly and put themselves in front through a goal as early as the seventh minute; persistent pressure on the Newcastle full-backs from both flanks led to a sumptuous ball in from the left-hand side from Mark Bird, which was finished excellently by Will Doyle with a delightful glancing header. Sheffield then increased their advantage only a minute later; Thompson was put clean through thanks to awful defending from Newcastle, and their goalkeeper
had no chance as Thompson finished emphatically, making it 2-0. Sheffield continued to boss the game, working hard and closing down quickly and effectively, while Newcastle hardly challenged the defence at all in the first half. They also defended woefully, and were made to pay in the 34th minute. On the counter, Dave Kettle was hardly challenged as he stormed down the left-hand side, before setting up Thompson for a simple tap-in, his second of the game and the third for the Sheffield.
Sheffield, in yellow, progressed to the next round in the cup with an emphaic victory.
Kettle yet again put in another fine display but didn’t get the goal his performance deserved. In the 37th minute, his beautiful curling shot from the left-hand side of the area was only denied by the inside of the post. In the second half, he was kept out by the feet of the Newcastle goalkeeper in a one-on-one opportunity. Sheffield continued to show their quality in front of goal and added a fourth goal in the 63rd minute. The Newcastle players were too sluggish to close down a short corner and Doyle was allowed to power the ball into the corner of
the net from the edge of the area. Sheffield were now in complete control and thoroughly deserved their four-goal lead. Tolua came on for Kettle midway through the second half and put the lamb to the slaughter as the Newcastle seconds defence gifted him two goals far too easily. Newcastle gave away the ball cheaply and Tolua nonchalantly slotted home in the 76th minute. Right on the stroke of full time, he found himself clean through on goal and wrapped up the scoring with the team’s sixth.
Photos: Andrey Vasilyev
Men’s badminton cruise past Leeds in easy victory Men’s badminton firsts BUCS League 2B University of Sheffield University of Leeds
Adam Hancock The University of Sheffield men’s badminton team recorded a resounding 7-1 victory over Leeds seconds. Sheffield swept aside their opponents and comfortably won the singles rubbers 4-0. In the doubles matches Sheffield did suffer a defeat, but still came
through 3-1 victors at the English Institute of Sport. The result leaves Sheffield top of the Northern 2B BUCS league and captain Laurence Lee is predicting promotion to the top division: “I am confident we will gain promotion this season. It is between us and Leeds firsts we feel, so that fixture is crucial. But we go into it with confidence.” Sheffield started well with Joe Pickering winning 21-8, 21-9 to take the first singles match against Blaise Gonsalwez. Pickering ran his opponent ragged and his shot selection was inspired.
Captain Lee followed the lead of his team mate as he defeated George Payne 21-9, 21-11. The match was tight in the early stages of both ends, but Lee frustrated his opponent and comfortably pulled away in both ends. In the reverse singles fixtures Sheffield were again dominant over Leeds. Joe Pickering faced Payne and the first end was very tight, ending 21-15. At one point the scores were level at 1010, but an overhead smash from Pickering set the tone for the rest of the end. After winning the first end, Pickering took the second very
easily as he cruised to a 21-3 victory. Lee then took to the court and completed the singles white wash with a 21-7, 21-13 victory over Blaise Gonsalwez. In the doubles matches, Sheffield continued their dominance. Freddie Mather and Rich Grainger defeated Leeds seconds 21-13, 21-10. Grainger was particularly impressive in the win over Johnny Storey and James Edgell. In the other doubles fixture, Conor Bean and Merwin Moh faced Dave Barry and Mitz Daji. Both ends finished 21-13 to the home side in a fairly comfortable victory for Sheffield.
The shock of the day came when Bean and Moh faced the second string pairing of Storey and Edgell. After taking the first set 21-19, they lost the following two 21-17 and 21-13. It was a surprising result and the frustration was evident amongst the Sheffield pairing. However, it was only a minor blip for Sheffield as the final doubles fixture ended in another victory. Mathers and Grainger ran out 21-10, 21-10 victors against Barry and Daji, to round up a comfortable afternoon for Sheffield. They now travel to Leeds Met next Wednesday.
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FORGE PRESS Friday November 18 2011
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Rugby’s first defeat in clash of the unbeaten
Squash go top after easy win Men’s squash firsts BUCS League 1A University of Sheffield Newcastle University
Uni lost their 100 per cent record as Hallam knocked them off the league’s top spot.
Men’s rugby union firsts BUCS League 1A University of Sheffield Sheffield Hallam
Matthew Smith Both Sheffield universities went into a huge derby clash at Norton carrying 100 per cent league win records at Norton. It was the visitors, Hallam, who continued their perfect record. They beat a disappointing Uni side, who were still missing captain Johnny France - sidelined on doctor’s orders with a jaw injury - leaving Ed Passmore with the captain’s armband again. The first 10 minutes were as physical and passionate as expected, but the game was devoid of any real chance of note until Hallam looked to gain the upper hand with a penalty from dead centre on Uni’s twenty-two line, only to slice it well wide. This sprang the home team into life, and they deservedly gained the lead after 22 minutes. Following a line-out, the forwards drove through the Hallam defence, and the ball was eventually bundled over the line by Ollie Taylor for his fifth try of the season; a remarkable total from a second row. This was followed by a great conversion
virtually from the touchline by Magowan, as Uni moved into a 7-0 lead. Hallam upped their game after this concession, and on 32 minutes reduced the deficit to 7-3, an easy penalty flying between the posts following Matt Poulton’s attempt to win the ball from an offside position. A bigger worry for the home team at this stage, however, was an injury to the impressive Will Ville, who had suffered a
nasty knock to his right hand, and was unable to appear in the rest of the encounter. Tensions truly began to boil in the second half, and came to a head around five minutes in, when Matt Oakes, second row for the home side, was sinbinned. For Uni, this was a body blow of arguably game-changing proportions. Hallam took advantage, working their way up the pitch
Photos: Andrey Vasilyev and scoring their first try, giving them the lead for the first time. However, a failure to convert this try let Uni, trailing 7-8, off the hook, and the introduction of the giant Charlie Wright into the forward line looked a great move. The substitute was at the heart of a barrelling forward move, which forced a Hallam error and a penalty, converted by Magowan, put the league leaders back in front. With Oakes back on after his indiscipline, Uni should really have pressed home their advantage. On 61 minutes, however, Hallam stunned the home side with the scores that would eventually see them take their rival’s place at the head of the table. A tremendously worked try down the right flank was converted – the only kicked points Hallam won all game – for 10-15. Then, straight from the restart, the visitors regained possession, initiated a flowing cross-pitch move, and crossed the line to take an unassailable 10-point lead. Uni failed to form a decent opportunity for the remainder of the game, Mason and Wright knocking on in separate embryonic openings. The game ended and Uni were left to reflect on an infuriating defeat to their fierce local rivals.
The University of Sheffield men’s squash team smashed joint firstplaced opponents Newcastle University 5-0, a result which sees them go clear at the top of BUCS Northern League 1A. The tie was never in doubt. After an hour’s delay for the arrival of the visitors, it seemed that Sheffield were making up for lost time, losing only four games in all five ties. Tom Anthistle was first up, and he took no time at all to dismantle Joe Harvey. He raced through the first game with considerable ease, but the next two games were much tougher as Harvey fought back. There was some great defensive play in the third game from Anthistle after he found himself 7-10 down. He forced his opponent around the court, leading to an 11-3, 11-6, 1412 victory, which sent the team in a winning direction. Paul Snape also enjoyed a straight sets win over his opponent despite going behind in games early on. In the first game he went 0-4 down, but seven points on the bounce summed up the rest of the match. He eventually ran out an 11-6, 11-8, 11-6 winner to put Sheffield 2-0 up and one away from an unassailable lead. Captain Toby Cockill was glad to be back to winning ways after a difficult tie against James Worsick. He looked in good form in the first game, taking it 118; however, he was pegged back after a few unforced errors, which brought it to one game all. Nerves showed in the hall as Cockill went behind 4-7, but took the game 11-7 with a great display and ran away with the last 11-2 as he tired his opponent out. Oli Drew played a five-setter against Jonny Honeyman. The game had everything, including a racquet thrown to the floor and Drew needing an ice pack at the end. They shared two tight first games. Drew dominated the third game, leading to shouts of despair from the Newcastle man after hitting the ball in the out area several times. He controlled his anger in the fourth, using great length and some clever drop shots. Despite a slight comeback from Drew,the game went to a decider. A couple of obstruction rulings annoyed the Newcastle man, but a great display by Drew saw him fight to a 12-10 win after facing match ball. Sam Watts was the last man up in the game, playing against George Marley. The Sheffield player won 11-7, 9-11, 11-8; 13-11. It was a close encounter between the first-placed players in the teams, and did not disappoint for excitement. After a superb demonstration of shots from both players, Watts was victorious. The result leaves Sheffield unbeaten so far this year.
Issue 41 of Forge Press, the University of Sheffield student newspaper