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issue 1

inside Emeli sande trouble in africa london rioter talks burlesque uncovered


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K.Welsh

Kirsty Welsh Editor-in-chief

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hat a year! A lot has happened in 2011: we got ourselves a new Princess; Bromance took over the country and the world was shocked by the riots that rocked London. As communities involved still reel from the events of the summer we speak exclusively to one of the Clapham riot ring leaders and find out what sparked the chaos. With our Big Reads bringing you both a national and international take on the news our fashion and entertainment sections lighten the load by bringing you the latest reviews and trends for 2012. THE Hype is a magazine for those interested in the world around them; young, outgoing professionals who also know how to have a good time. We don't shy away from a controversial story, just read our women on the front life feature on page 26, but at the same time we give a nod to the lighthearted and celebrity news which gives us all something to gossip about down the boozer. The Hype is the only bi-monthly read to give you news, reviews and issues pitched to appeal to both a male and female audience. So, it's time to crack open the champers, rummage through the selection boxes andwelcome the most exciting magazine of 2011. Enjoy the issue and have a great Christmas and New Year! (oh, and we want to know what you think so log on to facebook/The Hype Magazine and have your say.

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iend wa ing r l I f y w o o h azy b t JK R l els e y e W m ty ter lly m f s a a r n p i i u f f: K ing - To y e i d t i h n t p sto in-c mmer Gra o T r g ica o ie r u e t r S i G : m A d r y n h o E rip i t : Cat Edit d r a y o o t t i r u ke a Dep a re Ed T u t s a i l e F s hloe El es r: C o t own busin i y m d t E r a t e Featesuigrn Team: Marcus Faint - To s Spanish n r a e l y l l D ore an - Fina m r s r e u y C y a a s m o m m: E ord - T f l o o W Design Tea y l l e :K e way y Cooper along th el ad Design Team Br t ee m y ll d hopefu

Toogood - Take Design Team: Suzie

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start taking more photos to nt wa I l ol rr Ca a el ca Mi : Design Team

t a tattoo

To finally ge ta at Gh e ni ha ep St : m a Te gn Desi

Design Team: Michael D'Aguiar - To be in a successfull job by the middle of the year

Contributors: Linzi Radwell, Sarah Wall, Lucie Rutter, Gary Peters, Brodie Robertson, Charlotte Babington, Eleanor Blackwell, Corrie Parriss, Abby Clark, Stacey Tonks. Chelsea Allen, Jessica Pook, Naomi Wilson, Alec Malloy, Summer Grant, Harry Smith, Charlotte Webb, Tom Whitehead, Catherine Elliott, Gemma Clapp, Helen Skipworth, Sakaynah Hunter, Nicole Cook, Harriet Wheeler, Michelle Chai, Katie Smith.


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London Riots

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AIDS in Africa

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Stroke

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Girl Gangs

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Student/Lapdancer

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Puppy Farming

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How 2011 Changed the World

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Tattoo

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Israel

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NEETS

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Female Soldiers

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Olympics

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Dream Job

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Young Nuns

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Legal High

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Women’s Football

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VIVE LA

R EVOLU TION Brazen, unrepentent and proud; The Hype talks to one of the ring leaders of last summer’s London riots.

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hen the riots shocked the city of London, the confidence of the rioters was evident in their lack of disguise. With a cocky air of professionalism some took to the streets with bravado – others, however, carried out the atrocities under wraps. Alex Robson meets one rioter who fears being unmasked. “I remember it like it was yesterday.” Joe says in a dull, emotionless voice. Joe is 21, an age where he feels like he should have more than he has got, “I was sitting in on Facebook; I think it was on a Sunday when it all kicked off. I had been raving the night before at a squat party from what I can remember. My Blackberry lit up, it didn’t ping though because the speakers broken. ‘Some madness is going down in north, come we hit south with our lot’ is what it said, I keep the message on my phone for memories. That’s probably not a good idea though as it could be used as evidence. “I grabbed my bag, bolt-cutters and nightstick out from under my bed, shoved them inside, grabbed a bottle of water and left my

flat. The bolt-cutters are necessary in my week-to-week activities, and the nightstick is purely for self-protection.” Joe explains. “I saw the bus that I had to get to Clapham just driving past on the high street, so I dashed down an alleyway that cuts to the next stop and jumped on through the second set of doors where people were getting off. It only took about 15-20 minutes to get to Clapham because it was a Sunday, but we didn’t get right into Clapham, somewhere near Wandsworth Common the bus stopped and the driver said the main road ahead was cordoned off by police. “We jumped off and I walked to a different stop where my friends were. We went down some back roads and met up with the rest of the crew just off the high street and it was all going off. Every shop, apart from Waterstones, had been smashed open with shutters wedged open by street signs and bikes and other street furniture used for window smashing. People were running about in a frenzy, it was a free-for-all.” Joe goes on to say how the experience left him with a whole load of free stuff: “My first thought was to get a new phone and Vodafone shop was wide open. A couple

alex robson/marcus faint 09


The b olt-cu tters are necessary in my week-to-week activities and the nightstick is pu rely for self-protection


Police arrest a protester in Clapham

of people were behind the counter trying to open the till, so I went in there. We went in the back room, and I shoved about 4 boxes marked Blackberry Bold into my bag, and quickly ran out. I felt like a kid in a toy shop. I don’t know why I was running though; it was like something out of Grand Theft Auto. I got a couple of iPods, CDs and DVDs as well.” The riots were sparked by the shooting of a reported drug dealer in the epicentre of Tottenham, Mark Duggan. He was involved in a car chase with police from London’s drug unit, Operation Trident, which ended with him brandishing a loaded weapon at officers, who responded by shooting him and killing him. A peaceful protest by the community in Tottenham was staged outside the police station in outrage that someone had been killed for no apparent reason, which gradually got out of hand: a patrol car was set alight and officers were being bottled. Violence and looting spread across Tottenham that Saturday night, with many saying it should have stopped there, but what the police called ‘copycat criminal activity’ tore across the capital. “Youth employment is at a current rate of 20%, with more cuts being made to cover for the mistakes made by the greedy bankers and stockbrokers that hold shares in our lives.”

The inequality that Joe experiences on a day-to-day basis forms the attitudes that he expresses: “I’m just getting the taxes back that my family and I pay. It’s almost the opposite of what I pay and what I get, which is next to nothing. I’m not in a position to get a job, I’ve got few qualifications and I’ve got no chance of going to university now, especially with the Government increasing the fees to £9,000 a year. Who can afford to pay that? I’m not going to take out a loan to cover that either - I can’t be starting my life being that deep in debt. “I’ve got no opportunities and no chances, so I take what I can get. They even cut my EMA when I was going to college five days a week. I’ve been on three different courses, and each one has been shit. My mum works hard and I feel like I have to get rid of the pressure on her by providing for myself, but I obviously can’t do that.” Joe talks about the appearance of adverts and other signs of consumer culture everywhere: “They’re all enticing us to buy cars and clothes we can’t afford, working jobs we hate so that we buy stuff we don’t need. Why does the next person have more of a right to these sorts of luxuries than me? I feel like I am continually disowned by a society that is obsessed with possessions. I’m not valued enough to be helped, and I’ve got no

reason to believe that I will ever be able to afford what everyone else. “At this point in my life I’ve got nothing to lose. I still covered my face when I was grabbing that stuff though, some of my boys didn’t, with all these prison closures and the government wanting to drive down the prison population what are the chances that we are going to get caught?” The fact that he hasn’t been caught yet may speak for itself. Joe’s sister is more than sceptical of her brother’s choices: “I don’t know what’s wrong with him, he needs to change. Mum’s not impressed, but she cares more about him being happy. He thinks that what she doesn’t know can’t hurt her, but the truth is she has given up on him. “Dad left before I was born and mum is working 10 hour days just to pay the bills. He’s lived this sort of lifestyle since he left school; he had a chance for a future but didn’t take it. I’m only two years younger than him and I’m starting university next year to study Politics and Law. I even went to the same school as him, so he doesn’t really have many excuses.” With the rioting a distant memory, it still sticks in everybody’s mind what happened when rioters took over London.

11


Does this girl look healthy?

10 months ago Becki suffered a sudden stroke. Here, she shares her story on strain struggle and her road to recovery...

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t was a Sunday morning in February and like any other Sunday morning Becki Cobb threw on her jacket, wrapped a scarf around her neck and began her quick walk to work. This was not like any stroll to town Becki had ever experienced, it was a walk that would change her life forever as midway through her journey she collapsed in the street. She was having a stroke. Becki was just 21. Despite having never smoked, rarely drinking and living a healthy lifestyle, Becki became one of the 500 under 25s who have a stroke each year. There were no signs or indications that Becki’s life was about to change forever, it happened as quickly as taking a breath. “The whole thing is just a blur to me. I remember feeling so happy as I left the house that morning, I was in my third year of university and my work was going well. I loved my job, was having an amazing time with my friends and for once it seemed as though everything was falling into place and then it all changed, just like that.” After collapsing down a quiet road Becki was found by police who, as they took in her slurred words and wobbling stance, assumed that she was just a drunk youth who had hit the bottle too hard the previous night. It took several attempts of failed communication before the officers realised something was seriously wrong and Becki was rushed to hospital.

“I was trying to talk to the police but speaking had become impossible, I was terrified as I lost all feeling on one side of my body. I couldn’t see clearly, I thought I was going to die,” Becki says. “Everything went blank and the next thing I knew I was waking up in hospital. I had no feeling in my legs or left hand and my face felt numb.” Becki knew that the road to recovery would be a long and difficult one. “As soon as I woke up I saw the faces of my friends and family and I knew something was seriously wrong. I was told I had had a stroke and all I kept thinking was ‘how can that be true? Only old people have strokes.’ I truly wasn’t aware that you could have them at any age.” Becki says, “Doctors told me that the stroke was caused by a blood clot I wasn’t even aware I had. I was lucky to be alive.” Only 10 per cent of stroke victims completely recover and Becki was one of the lucky few who had not suffered from permanent paralysis or damage to the brain. “I know how fortunate I am, but at the time I did feel like my world was crashing down. My friends would get to finish their third year, go to the graduation ball, date boys and do normal things while I was stuck in hospital. I had a completely defeatist attitude at first and wanted to give up but my friends and family helped me see that this was temporary and I could and would get better.” Becki’s friends and family rallied around her and did all they could to keep her positive.

“My room was filled with cards and gifts and the radio station I worked at part-time got in touch with my favourite band McFly, who then sent me signed cards and posters,” she says. “Dougie even recorded a ‘get well soon’ video for me. It felt amazing that there were so many people out there who wanted to cheer me up and help me get better.” Although Becki was feeling stronger, she was still worried about being unable to do certain things. “My birthday was coming up in a few months and I had arranged a huge party. I also had tickets to Glastonbury and I was worried I wouldn’t be well enough to do either of these things and that was so disheartening,” she adds. After being told by doctors she may never walk again and would take years to return to normality, Becki made a miraculous recovery that no one, not even her, expected. “I suddenly had a moment in hospital where I thought ‘I can do this,’” Becki says. “I had been looking forward to going to Glastonbury for nearly a year and I wasn’t going to let this stroke beat me. Doctors told me it would be unlikely that I would be well enough to go, but I kept pushing myself to the absolute limits and thankfully my body accepted the challenge.” Initially Becki was unable to walk and was wheelchair bound for several months. She also lost all feeling in her right hand and could not do the simplest of things.


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1 in 500 people under 25 suffer from strokes each year “I couldn’t even lift up a pen” Becki explains. “I posted a video on my blog of my several attempts to force my hand to do something, anything, as I just wanted to show how difficult the easiest of things could be poststroke.” Becki, always pushing herself to the limits, decided that she would beat this stroke, and with extensive physiotherapy and determination she was soon able to walk with just the aid of a cane and was gaining feeling back in her hand. Becki made it to Glastonbury just five months after her stroke, even being able to stand up and dance to her favourite bands. To many stroke victims she has become an inspiration, her blog gets thousands of followers each day and has led the way for other young stroke victims who want to share their story. In the UK more than 1,000 people under the age of 30 have a stroke each year. The charity Different Strokes campaigns on behalf of young stroke victims as so many people only associate strokes with the elderly and the young victims often don’t get the recognition they deserve. Becki shared her story on the website and advertised her blog there. She began the blog as a way to share her journey to recovery. “I am so glad my blog has helped other victims and Different Strokes has shown me that I am not alone,” she adds. Dr Charles Edmondson who works with the charity says, “It’s not so much the actual physical problems they have which are different - it’s the fact that they are young people who have dependent families and are active, and because all that suddenly goes they have a whole host of problems which older people don’t have.” Becki says that people just assumed she would recover quickly because she was young, or that strokes wouldn’t affect people as badly if they have youth on their side. “My age has nothing to do with my recovery, it was my determination to live a normal life that made me push myself to get better,” she explains. “Sometimes it’s worse for young people who had strokes because they lose the most important years of their life.” Someone who understands this entirely is Tom Roberts, a boy who Becki met through Different Strokes. Tom had a stroke when he was just 13. “I collapsed in class and slipped into a coma

for over a week,” Tom says. “When I woke up I could not walk or talk. It took three years of intense therapy for me to regain the ability to walk and speak normally. I couldn’t do sport anymore, which was something very important in my life. “I spent my teenage years in hospital and going back to school was hard because everyone knew I was different,” he adds. “My friends were always there for me but even they didn’t really understand when there were certain things I couldn’t do - things they found easy.” Tom, like Becki, can now lead a relatively normal life, and he went on to complete a degree at the University of Reading, something Becki finds inspiring as she too is determined to finish her degree. “I was in my third year when I had the stroke and I am going back to University to start where I left off!” she says excitedly. Since her stroke in February Becki has not only camped out at Glastonbury but she has also completed the Nike half marathon and managed to celebrate her birthday in style with a huge party. She is also now walking without the need of an aid. Becki also recently met her idol and fellow stroke victim, Jessie J, after winning tickets to a meet-and-greet session with the star in November. Jessie had a stroke when she 18, and now at 23 she has fully recovered and is making waves in the music industry with her amazing voice and inspiring attitude to life. The singer told Becki that she too wondered if she would ever be able to walk again after her stroke and it took her a year to recover fully. Jessie recognised that her stroke was perhaps not as severe as Becki’s but equally as life changing and the girls gossiped about their annoyance at not being able to wear high heels, especially after Jessie’s accident earlier this year when she broke her ankle after falling off stage. “I might only be able to wear tiny heels for a while!” she told Becki. Some may argue that Becki is doing too much too soon. “I know people may think that I am forcing my body to do too much but if this has taught me anything it’s that life is too short and I want to live it to the full and try everything I can,” she explains, with a huge grin on her face. “All I want to do now is to raise awareness. You are never ‘too young’ to be

faced with this illness.” Only 10 percent of stroke victims completely recover, Becki was one of those lucky few and she has proved that with determination, faith and courage anything is possible. Becki is a true inspiration to young stroke victims and evidence that you don’t have to let a stroke beat you. Visit Becki’s blog: lifestrokeadventures.tumblr.com Becki with a friend at Glastonbury

Strokes: the facts Over 130,000 people suffer from a stroke each year and 25 percent of these are younger that retirement age. It is important to recognise the signs of a stroke and the things to check: •Face: the face or eye may drop on one side with an inability to smile and a droop to the mouth. •Arms: arms become weak or numb and the person may be unable to lift one or both arms. •Speech: speech may be slurred or garbled, person may be unable to force words out despite being awake.

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Student by day...

...Lapdancer by night “I thought I could handle the debt from university, but the length I went to made me lose my self-respect and get stalked by an aggressive client.”

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niversity is an expensive time for students and is made even more financially difficult when they need to move into halls or shared housing. With university fees increasing from September 2012, students will be trying to earn as much as possible to help fund living away from home. Some girls are turning to lap dancing as a way of making easy cash during university. While it’s true that the amount of money earned by lap dancers is great, some people may not approve of what the job entails. Tanya Fisher, 27, knows all too well the desperation to earn money while living away from home for university. “It’s not a nice feeling when you see your bank balance in the minus figures of your overdraft. The constant feeling of needing money was enough to drive me insane and I looked for any kind of jobs in the area,” she said. Tanya is currently working for Santander but wants to start her own business, after studying Business Studies at the University of the West of England as she aspired to be an entrepreneur. Her family home is in Winchester so she had to move to university as it was too far to commute. She lived in halls for her first year and then moved into private accommodation for the final two years. Surviving on only the maintenance loan from Student Finance, it wasn’t enough to pay the rent, bills and essentials for living. “Coming from a middle-class family, I wasn’t eligible for the maintenance grant and due to my parent’s wages adding up to around £55,000 a year I only got the bare minimum for the maintenance loan,” she explains. “It was never enough for me to live on.” Tanya’s parents helped by giving her around £250 to £300 each month. She has always considered herself a sensible person when it comes to money and so in her first year she managed to control how much she

Finances can get on top of any student


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The man started shouting at me, calling her a slut spent. However, once the second year came around she was in trouble. She says happily: “Shopping gave me a buzz. Every time I made a purchase, I felt happy and complete.” But changing her tone, “Asking my parents for money every month was the hardest part because I felt like I was begging. I knew I needed a job.” Tanya reached desperation and was looking online every evening for parttime jobs. Struggling to find anything with flexible hours, a girl on her course suggested she take up lap dancing. Thoughts and images went rushing to Tanya’s head. Spending her evenings in a club stripping in front of middle-aged men wasn’t the most satisfying feeling in the world, but she had read stories in the media about how other girls would pay off their student debt in no time at all. Suddenly the idea sounded appealing. “When Yasmin* suggested I take up lap dancing, I thought she was joking,” she says. “She told me she does it herself and enjoys it. She loved the attention from men which I didn’t have a problem with. “Yasmin told me I would be stupid not to take up lap dancing considering the financial situation I was in,” she adds. “That’s when the cliché was running through my head ‘desperate times call for desperate measures’.” Tanya applied at the same club that Yasmin worked in and got an interview within a week. She remembers how the manager told her all the rules of the club and what the job would involve. She was required to perform topless, which she was very uncomfortable with. “I’m not the most confident person in the world but I felt this would help increase my confidence and self-esteem,” she explains, “and to begin with it was brilliant. I was earning between £800 and £1000 every week, which is much more than what I would get if I worked in a shop, and the hours were negotiable.” During one shift in July 2005, Tanya was stripping for a client when he suddenly asked her for sexual favours. Knowing that it wasn’t part of her job she refused to comment and continued with what she was paid to do. The man started shouting at her,

calling her frigid and a slut. At one point he grabbed Tanya’s arms and held them behind her back. She screamed for security to remove the aggressive man from her room. Tanya was sent home early after suffering verbal and near physical abuse. “That shift was the worst night I have ever had,” she says. “I don’t understand why he got so aggressive towards me because he must have known lap dancers don’t have sex with clients. I would have got fired if I did.” The worst was still to come for Tanya. After graduation, Tanya returned home to Winchester and quit her job at the club. Not long afterwards she started receiving texts and missed calls from an anonymous number. Voicemails were left with descriptions of what Tanya was wearing and where she had been. “These texts were disturbing. To begin with I thought it was a prank but after a couple of weeks I was worried that someone was stalking me. I refused to leave the house on my own because I was worried I was going to be attacked by my mysterious stalker,” she says. Whilst having lunch in Winchester with her friends she noticed a man acting suspiciously. “Out of the corner of my eye I saw this man hanging around the cafe we were in. He

was on his phone and it looked like he was taking photos of us. When I took a closer look he was just like the aggressive guy I lap danced for in July.” Tanya called the police that evening. She spoke of her experience in the lap dancing club in Bristol as they asked questions about the man she had seen. Two days later, they arrested the 46-yearold man and charged him for stalking and being violent towards women. According to police reports it wasn’t the first time he had been arrested for the same crime and resulted in him being sent to prison for two years. She says: “To hear from the police that this wasn’t the first time he had been aggressive towards women was horrible. He is a bully and I’m glad he was put in prison. No woman should have to suffer his aggressive nature and demands.” Tanya met up with a counsellor twice a week to help build up her confidence. She’s moved on from her experience but there are still hundreds of girls in the UK who are doing this job for ‘easy cash’. It’s a risky job, so if you are desperate for money speak to an advisor at your university. They can lead you in the right direction when looking for jobs. Don’t be fooled by the seemingly glamorous world of lap dancing.

Tanya’s financial situation led to lap dancing

charlotte may/suzie toogood 15


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how

2011

changed the world

From an unthinkable natural disaster, to a sumptuous fairytale wedding, national events this year have had the ability to become the main focus of worldwide news broadcasts within minutes, due to the fast-paced internetbased civilization we live in. Such news brought people from different countries to a halt, to focus on whatever had just happened on the other side of the globe. So, let’s take another look at a few of the major events that grabbed and held the world’s attention throughout this year.

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January 2011: Riots against joblessness that started in Tunisia soon spread to other countries across the Middle East. People realised they were unhappy with the government they were living under and could actually do something about it. This political unrest has been evolving throughout the year, resulting in violent demonstrations in many key cities including Tripoli and Cairo. This resulted in clashes between the army and protesters, the resignation of President Mubarak in Egypt and most importantly, the death of thousands of innocent people.

March 2011: An 8.9 magnitude earthquake off the coast of caused a tsunami to crash into Japan. In April, the official number of deaths caused by this natural disaster was 12,690, with over 14,000 people still unaccounted for. The tsunami severely damaged three nuclear power plants, leaving Japan with high radiation levels that still threaten the soil for farming today and many years to come.

October 2011: Former Lybian dictator Colonel Muammar Gaddafi was captured and killed by rebels as he tried to escape his compound. Following more than 30 years in power, Libyans followed the unrest stirred up in other Middle-Eastern countries and decided that they did not want Gaddafi as the leader of their country anymore. In September, Gaddafi was forced to leave the capital and hide in his hometown of Sirte where he was then captured and killed a month later. The body of the former leader was laid on the ground in a warehouse for five days before the cadaver was finally buried at a secret location in the desert.

August 2011: England was overwhelmed as street riots and looting swept the nation for four nights. This unrest started off as a peaceful protest against the accidental shooting of Mark Duggan by police, and ended in a violent display of destruction and violence during which 5 people had died and 3,000 people - most of who were under 18 - had been arrested.


absopindngjhotnrppaijneoopdjnanjojodnaawopers April 2011: The world gazed on as a Cinderellatype wedding came to life. On the 29th of April, Catherine Middleton said, “I do”, to Prince William at Westminster Abbey, in front of 1,900 guests. More than 500,000 wellwishers gathered outside Buckingham Palace to witness the Duke and Duchess’ first kiss as a married couple on the famous balcony.

May 2011: President Obama announced the death of Osama Bin Laden, leader of the Al-Qaeda terrorist group believed to be responsible for the 9/11 terrorist attacks. At the top of the US “most wanted” list for 10 years, Bin Laden was killed by US forces in Pakistan after a raid on his compound. Countries all over the world were on alert following this event, for fear of an Al-Qaeda reprisal.

July 2011: Following a phone hacking scandal that put many journalists to shame, the British newspaper News of the World closed down. From celebrities, to victims of the 7/7 bombings, complaints regarding their phones being hacked by the newspaper came flooding into police stations, causing the arrest of 10 journalists, an investigation into each of the allegations and the resignation of two of Britain’s top policemen.

May-November 2011: The Eurozone has been in financial difficulty for the majority of this year, as the more powerful countries try to help those who are struggling to pay back their debts, such as Greece. All of the 17 countries involved in the Eurozone are in trouble if the markets do not turn in their favour soon. Due to the current uncertainty in the money market, the Eurozone countries are forced to work together to prevent a major financial crisis in the near future.

July 2011: Norway became the centre of attention after 32 year-old Anders Behring Breivik, opened fire on 68 youths, and gathered for a political camp on the island of Uteoya. He also set off a bomb in the centre of Oslo, killing 7 others, to distract policemen from the 90 minute-long massacres he was about to undertake single-handedly. Breivik will be put on trial in April 2012.

19


Israel: Home in a Israel is known as a country at war but for many people it is their home. The Hype talks to Liran Shamriz about what it’s like to live in a nation of conflict...

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hat can you do in 15 seconds? Pause. Time that and think to yourself, what could you do? Time’s up. Have you thought of anything? The siren shrills. You have 15 seconds. Panic. Chaos. You’re running as fast as you can. The bus stop is your nearest shelter, but even that feels far away. Time is ticking. Your heart is racing. Bang. The rockets land. This is what life is like for those who live just outside of Gaza. Almost every day a civil defence siren wails. This leaves innocent civilians 15 seconds to find shelter before rockets fired by Palestinian terrorists land. Children are brought up knowing that 15 seconds

could change everything, or worst yet end their lives. It’s five in the morning. The siren goes off. You haven’t slept much because you feared being attacked in the night. You jump out of bed and climb into the nearest cupboard. There you stay for a couple of hours until the coast is clear. It may not be long until you are in there again. Growing up in such terror is both emotionally and psychologically scarring. University student Liran, 27, shares his experience living in Ashkelon, a city seven miles from the Gaza border. For a while Liran had a childhood just like any other. He would play soccer outside

and go swimming. Then, when he was 16, everything changed. People started to be killed by Palestinian suicide bombers and shootings. “The first child to be killed was the son of our principle,” Liran explained. “It was very sad. “He [Elad Wallenstein] was killed by a Palestinian who shot him. The impact was huge. He was just two years older than us so it struck us pupils with terror. We started to be terrified to go on buses and stand in nightclub lines. “Every time someone who graduated got killed we would run to the graduation board where they had all the pictures. We’d look to see if we knew them or remembered them. I


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war zone

War has taken it’s toll

never cried when someone I knew died from a terrorist attack. I don’t know why, maybe because the pain is mixed with anger but I don’t know.” Things got worse when Israel handed over Gaza to the Palestinians in 2005. Extremist groups want Israel to be a completely Palestinian state and have used terrorism ever since to try and achieve this goal. Their rocket attacks have led to a life of threat and fear for the people living in southern Israel. Nearly 1,200 rockets have been fired across the Gaza border in the past decade. “The rockets muck you up completely,” Liran said. “That amount of killing by the Palestinians was new for that period of time, so there was

no advice. Mum just told me to watch out. “It destroys your everyday life. Every time you exit your house you look for shelter just in case the terrorists attack. You don’t feel secure anywhere, not even in your home. If you want to take a shower you will think twice and put a towel close so you can run. If you want to go to the bathroom you think about it too because you don’t want to run with your pants down, or before you wipe,” Liran explained. “I’m sorry to describe this, but that’s the way life is. Everything is determined by 15 seconds.” In Sderot, the city closest to the Gaza border, 92 per cent of residents have lived through rocket attacks. Although Palestinian

sympathisers argue that these rockets don’t cause many casualties, having to run to a bomb shelter constantly leaves psychological damage. 75- 95 per cent of children in Sderot experience symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, whilst 80 per cent of adults experience symptoms of anxiety. Liran was an officer in the army and hates the fact there is nothing he can do for anyone. There is nothing anyone can do to prepare themselves for the rockets. “You imagine yourself as a hero running to save other people, but you freak out every time a missile crashes in your neighbourhood and next to your house,” he explained. Three times a missile has landed near Liran’s house.

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Once one landed just 20 meters away. The rockets make life a nightmare for those who live in targeted areas. “I run whenever I hear something like an alarm. My mom always runs, for example, when she hears a specific commercial on MTV because it sounds like an alarm. I almost never put MTV on.” Israel recently released 1,027 terrorists in order to free Gilad Shalit, a 25-year-old who had been held captive underground for five years by terrorist group ‘Hamas’. A lady named Amina Mona was among the prisoners released. She killed Liran’s friend, Ofir Rahum. Amina Mona lured him over the internet to a Palestinian city. Ofir thought he was talking to a girl his own age. “She told him she would have sex with him. When he got there two of her friends shot him with an automatic AK47 and completely destroyed his body.”

This event made Liran feel numb. He couldn’t comprehend what happened. “It all seemed like a big game to me,” he said. It was far from a game though, it was reality. “One of my friends, who was Ofir’s best friend, is unable to conduct any internet calls with women until this day- he is now 27. One time when he was talking to a girl on the internet he heard a voice behind him and felt hands holding his shoulders. He is now just scared and terrified to do it.” Liran moved away from Ashkelon to go to university in Tel Aviv. During his time at university he struggled with feeling torn between where he was and where his family were. “I felt bad because I was sitting there and my mom was being bombed,” Liran explained. “You just want to see your parents, when they are old, sitting and relaxing and not running all the time. My mom has run from

the Palestinian terrorists for a long time. She saw her friend killed by a grenade on her wedding day and now she is still running. I asked my parents to move but my mother said she will not move a metre and there will be no one that will scare her away. These Palestinian terrorists are destroying our lives. You just want your body to stop trembling.” Despite living a life of fear in Israel, Liran has no desire to move to the West. “I don’t think I could live anywhere else,” he said. “I feel much less secure in other places, where there is much more crime. It’s like I prefer the missiles because I know what’s going on.” As technology gets better it is feared that it won’t be long until the terrorists will be able to make rockets which could hit bigger cities such as popular tourist destination Tel Aviv. Liran wants to be a writer and his hope is that one day children will grow up on the Gaza border living a life of dreams not nightmares.

“I never cried when someone I knew died from a terroist attack”

Growing up fast is important


A female soldier prone and ready


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Life in Camo and Constraint Ready to take a bullet to save a comrade, but banned from shooting a gun at the person who fired it –Welcome to the ‘unfair’ world of a British female soldier

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fter a review in September this year, the Ministry of Defense concluded that the ban on women being allowed into close combat sectors of the British Military was to remain in place. With only 9.1 per cent of the British military being made up of women it begs the question; Are these backwards laws the reason many are not signing up to fight for their country? Britain is falling drastically behind with their equality rights in the British Military. France, Canada and Germany all allow women in their front line units such as, the Infantry and the Regiment. They were also joined by Australia who this year have armed their women with guns and the permission to use them in close combat. If these countries can take these diverse first steps, many question why Britain is hesitant to send our female comrades forwards into our testosterone-fueled front line. Jessica Barham, a 21-year-old, Explosive Detection Dog Handler in the British Army has a huge drive to fight for her country. She says: ‘I want to save lives and my motivation to do it now is stronger than ever’ Her motivation may have hit a dead end as it has been argued that putting women in regiment positions would potentially put men at a higher risk, due to their natural instinct to protect women. A term that has been thrown around a lot is ‘Team Cohesion,’ which focuses on the effect female comrades will have on our young, male soldiers in intense war zones. The Ministry of Defence says: ‘Under the conditions of high-intensity, close-quarter battle, team cohesion becomes of much greater importance; its failure having potentially grave and far-reaching consequences. None of the research that has been conducted has offered conclusive answers to the key question of the impact that gender mixing would have on the team in close combat conditions.’

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How different are female roles these days

female soldiers are no longer the support girls trying to get involved in the war. Today they are right in the thick of it but playing by a different set of rules


Helping the community out

Although the law is focused around our female soldiers, it seems that in actual fact it is more concerned with how our male soldiers will react to such a change. Stephen Smith, a 22-year-old RAF Police Officer says: “I’ve done a 7 month tour of Afghanistan in an 8 man team and one of our team was a woman, who became like a sister to all of us. We were all naturally protective of her. However, when it came down to fighting and mucking in she was always alongside giving it her all and sometimes probably doing a better job. I’ve got no problem at all with women fighting on the front line, many have been awarded for their bravery.” Some of the jobs in the British Military already require women to participate in some amount of front line action. For example: medics, fire support controllers and other roles including intelligence specialists, signalers, logisticians and artillery spotters all come face-to-face with the enemy. Richard Perkins, an ex Second Lieutenant in the army says: “In aggressive attacking operations when soldiers go out for a specific mission that will involve engaging the enemy then no, women shouldn’t be allowed. However in supporting roles such as, medics and logistics, yes they should be” The British Armed Forces seem to be holding onto that traditional notion that women are better off in submissive job roles. Someone who knows exactly what it feels like to be in this position is Jessica Barham. She

joined at 17 having always wanted to be in the army. On September 10th last year she served her tour of duty in Afghanistan where she experienced her fair share of front line action, she says: “Women in the army are in the front line, some jobs more than others. When I was in Afghanistan I was searching areas in front of my boyfriend, who was in the Infantry. I saw and did as much as any bloke did.” Women and men appear to be already doing the same amount of work within front line positions in which case it is only fair that women receive the same opportunities as our male soldiers. One other reasons the front line is off limits to women is because of their effect on male soldiers - the fear is they will serve as a distraction to the sexually deprived masculine unit. Despite there being a rule that prohibits any sexual activity between comrades in a war zone, more than twelve pregnant soldiers have been flown home from Afghanistan this year alone. Statistically to every one female there are fifty males, so some sort of ‘rule breaking’ is surely expected. An Army source says: “Just guys being guys. If you’re the only female they have seen in five months you’re going to be more interesting than a chick that is down town every Saturday night.” But the front line isn’t just a ‘physical’ challenge to male comrades - soldiers face grueling entry tests to merit a position within front line ranks which many women have been physically incapable of completing.

Peter Saunders, a 22-year-old Veterinary Technician in the Army says: “In the Infantry the majority of women cannot keep up with the physical requirement that is needed. If they can do the job, then I don’t see a problem” It may be argued that females in the army need to butch up in order to get equal job roles and that males are simply genetically better adapted to dealing with combative warfare. It would seem so, Jessica agrees: “Some of the weapons are too powerful for someone of a smaller stature to men. I struggle with my fitness when carrying weight mostly due to my size and the way I’m built. Women are just not made to carry out some things, so we injure a lot easier.” When signing up for the Military Forces, women take exactly the same physical and fitness tests as men. By being limited to restricted roles that are maybe not quite so physically intense and challenging, it maybe that their chances of succeeding in these tests are already highly lessened before they have a chance to prove themselves? Holly Poulter, a 23-year-old, Navy Medic says: “In some aspects I do agree with women not being allowed on the front line. But I think women should be allowed to prove themselves and show that they can do the job just as well.” Female soldiers want nothing more than a chance to prove they can take on the physical challenge and show the male soldiers exactly what a female front line soldier looks like.

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Landing your dream job with or without a degree before you're 30 How hard is it to get to where you want to be in life? The Hype investigates...

Are you pursuing your dreams?


absopindngjhotnrppaijneoopdjnanjojodnaawopers Jumping for joy

for university places. Figures from the Higher Education Statistics show that there was a 4.1% rise for university places. As a result of this, it suggests competition is fierce for post graduates. Career advisor, George Gallop suggests: “View voluntary work as an approach into paid employment. During an economic slowdown, employers are less likely to take risks with people with no work experience.” Gaining work experience provides you with the knowledge, experience and confidence within that job. It is well recognised in employment and will give you the advantage over others. Agreeing Toby said: “I took a photography darkroom course as it really helped me gain an understanding of it. I was interested in how a certain angle can produce a different type of lighting on an object.” He added: “I also built up a portfolio of things which interested me and moments I enjoyed capturing. I was fortunate enough to get help from my uncle who’s always been my inspiration.”

“What’s the point in wasting money at Uni when I could use the time earning money?”

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ith unemployment rising to 8.1 per cent, the unstable and untrustworthy economic climate are providing us with less jobs, less opportunities and a decrease in bank balances. Prior to this, there is still hope for prosperous opportunities such as getting your dream job whether you have a degree or not. Staying focused, setting goals, and being committed will get you to the place you’ve wanted to be. Yet with the constant reminders of the unemployment figures, and the ongoing dispute on how hard it is for university educated individuals to find a job once they’ve graduated, people are debating whether they should extend their education to university. Photography student Toby Clark, who studied at Sheffield University, was doubtful

about finding a job after his graduation, as well as his financial state. In spite of this, it took him a staggering ten months to become a travelling photographer; which landed him his dream job of becoming pop sensations Duffy’s photographer at the age of 28. An excited Toby explained: “I had been given the opportunity to photograph Duffy as a one-off. I was in complete shock when her management liked the creativity and personality which was portrayed in my work, and offered me the job there and then.” Toby is now fortunate to travel to exotic countries such as China and Cuba with free travel allowance and VIP tickets to Duffy’s concerts. As a consequence of tuition fees rising earlier this year, there is a higher demand

But is it possible to achieve that dream job before your 30 without a degree? Career Advisor George replied: “It depends on the level of specialisation required for the position. If a position required ‘hard skills’, then it would be likely that the university degree becomes the standard qualification. Having a degree shows commitment and the individual being strong-willed. Yet every job has a different description and person specification.” University has always been stereotyped as the vital stepping stone which provides you with a more successful and better paid job, than if you went straight into employment. Yet, there are many alternatives to university such as apprenticeships, full time jobs, voluntary work and work experience. With the majority of students graduating with £25,000 debt, has a degree lost its value? ‘A study by the Office of Statistics has shown that graduates are beginning to see their degree’s value decrease and while many graduates are still making more money then the average school leaver, the gap is getting smaller with a quarter of graduates earning

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Perseverance is rewarded

less then those who decided to start work straight after finishing their A levels.’ John Armitage, 29 decided to not go to university as he wasn’t clear on his career choice. He didn’t want to spend money when he wasn’t certain and for that reason he went backpacking in Australia and managed to get recognised and got a job. John explained: “I was travelling through scorching heat in Sydney, when I was acknowledged with my entire luggage, and got offered a job to work on a backpacker’s magazine. At first, I was hesitant as I’m more of a practical guy and a people person rather than academic, but I needed money.” He goes on to say: “as the backpacking magazine was a free publication, getting advertisements was essential. One time, I had to liaise with Setanta Sports and encourage them to advertise for the magazine.” As John was so persistent and had great communication skills, he managed to convince them, as well as getting hired to work for their advertising sales team with his noticeable talent. John said: “I love my sport, so when Setanta Sports asked me to be head salesman I couldn’t believe it. I played a huge part for the team and interviewed people and trained the recruits. I was also fortunate to get free tickets to sports matches such as the ashes and met clients all over the world.” With Richard Branson, Jamie Oliver and Lord Alan Sugar all leaving school at the age of 16, it shows that a degree is not neccessary to land your dream job. John commented: “What’s the point in wasting money at uni when i could use the time earning money?” He advised: “Don’t be afraid to try different jobs. Whilst others are at university, you can gain experience in a range of jobs to add to the CV. Be prepared to work from the bottom to the top and don’t get intimidated by colleagues who have degrees, as experience is equally, if not more valuable.” Whether you lose your monmentum to extend your education to university or if you’re just unsure of your career plans, a degree isen’t necessary for everyone. If you are likeable and have great personal skills then your personality and individuality can get you far. On the other hand, if you’ve studied for a degree, then you’ve gained the experience of being independent and attained unique academic skills which others won’t have. Being positive and having confidence makes anything achievable. Work experience and confiding to a professional careers advisor will boost your chances of landing your dream job before you’re 30.


picture credit

Drug abuse is a slippery slope


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The rise and fall of

Mephe drone So called legal highs were seen as a cheaper, safer alternative to illegal drugs but no-one was prepared for the fall out when the highs turned to lifedestroying lows.

‘I

watched his face go pale and the foam froth from his mouth. Suddenly, I felt sober. I watched my friend start to fit while my brother phoned an ambulance. I panicked and started to hide every last bit of evidence of the drugs in the house. I watched my friend get carried out by a stretcher and then it dawned on me. I was a druggie, and that’s the last thing I’d ever wanted to be.’ Living life like most other teenagers his age, Bradley studied media at college and held down a part-time job at a shop. Between the summer of 2009 and spring 2010, the use of Mephedrone was rife in the UK and many people, including Bradley himself, have said that ¬the drug gave them an ‘incredible’ feeling after taking it. The feeling however, wasn’t the only reason Bradley enjoyed the drug, he also found it was an easy way of making some quick cash, but, like with any drug there were serious consequences: ‘I had dabbled with drugs a little before MCAT came around, but, always kept my head about me. Then a drug that was legal to buy, stronger than street cocaine and most MDMA based drugs is released, it was great,’ Bradley told me, ‘you didn’t need to meet some shady dealer to buy some highly cut bag of powder either. It was just there, on the Internet,’ he added. Mephedrone, otherwise known as Drone, MCAT or Meow Meow, is an amphetamine based drug. To take, users would normally snort it, although, it has been known for users to inject or swallow the powder. The ‘rise’ of Mephedrone came towards the end of 2008, party goers and ravers found it to be a legal, cheaper substitute to

other drugs and began buying it in bulk off the internet. ‘I started buying it from a legal high shop near my home town for just £15 a gram. Straight away, I thought it was some good stuff,’ Bradley said, ‘I then heard it was cheaper to buy online so decided to check it out, I was pleasantly surprised to find out how ridiculously easy it was to buy up to 2 kilos of cheap MCAT, and get it delivered to your door completely legally.’ ‘At first I was buying maybe 10-20 grams to sort my close friends out on nights out, which was becoming more and more regular. It was fine in my mind and the money I made went into buying more to sell. I started getting calls from random people I’d never heard of asking, (and sometimes begging) for MCAT at all times of the night, but still I just saw it as more money.’ ‘I was buying and selling 500 grams in two weeks and sniffing about five grams a day. Some friends and I would just sit up for days on end making sure we constantly felt buzzing. MCAT was unbelievably moreish. I was even going to work wired and sneaking off to sniff a line every half hour or so throughout the day.’ As with many drugs, some side effects include the user to become paranoid. Bradley experienced this first hand and started convincing himself that the police were watching his house, but that wasn’t all - Bradley began seeing things that weren’t there and getting worked up over the smallest of problems. He then started to drag his girlfriend into it, persuading her into letting him keep his drugs at her house; his addiction was out of control.

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No one is above addiction

‘Four months down the line and my best friend had been sacked from his job when he got caught with Mephedrone on him, my other friend hadn’t been home due to a family fallout, (fuelled by Mephedrone), for two months. I didn’t know who I was any more, I didn’t feel like me,’ Bradley explained before adding, ‘My girlfriend was on the verge of leaving me and I barely spoke to my parents. It was then I realised that two of my friends and I were addicted to it. We were completely and utterly reliant on this drug.’ Psychological problems were the least of Bradley’s worries as he was yet to experience the horrible truth that can come with getting involved with drugs, and selling it on the streets. ‘I decided to stop selling MCAT and chose to get rid of half my remaining batch to a man I’d never met before. This resulted in me being severely beaten up and robbed of the value of £400. By this point I despised the drug yet couldn’t stop myself from sniffing it.’ By this point Mephedrone was dominating the news; reports of people being hospitalised and even dying were shocking the public. At this point the severity of Mephedrone was worse than any other drug similar to it and doctors were sending out the warning to people about it at every opportunity. No one knew what was in it; no one knew what it could really do to you and it was highly dangerous. Mephedrone was slowly made illegal through the EU and was finalised in the UK in April of 2010. ‘It all ended for me when my mum found a

bag of MCAT in my room after I’d lied to her, telling her it was over. My dad took the bag and flushed all the powder down the toilet. By this point It was illegal to buy MCAT so I just felt a massive sense of relief as I watched my remaining batch just disappear.’ ‘All in all, it lasted around a year. I was living like a waster, I would be making thousands a month from selling MCAT that I would just spend on more drugs; I’ve nothing to show from the experience at all, other than a large scar from the beating I’d received. I lost some friends for good; seriously damaged my health and my parents were worried sick. But probably the worst thing is that I was now

I despised the drug, yet couldn’t stop myself sniffing it labelled as a ‘druggie’ and that was something I’d gone months without even realising.’ said Bradley. Things got much worse when at a house party, where the drug in hand was present; his friend had a very near death experience and has scarred his Bradley’s mind forever. ‘I watched his face go pale and the foam froth from his mouth. Suddenly, I felt sober. I watched my friend start to fit while my brother phoned an ambulance. ‘For a drug that was legal, it caused me a hell of a lot of trouble. I was affected for almost a year straight and I will never touch MCAT ever again,’ he exclaimed.

Now 21, Bradley who is now studying at University, feels like to have his life back on track after wasting a year using a highly addictive, life-destroying drug. Chris Hudson, FRANK spokesperson and addictions expert said: “So-called ‘legal highs’ are not a safer alternative to illegal drugs. They contain a range of potentially harmful chemicals and, as their chemical ingredients change all the time, you never know what you’re going to get. The risks increase if you combine them with alcohol or other drugs.” Legal highs are becoming increasingly known, and with the ease to buy them from the Internet who knows who is in contact with them. As opposed to drugs such as Ecstasy and Cocaine the risks are much more known and scientists have a better understanding of the dangers that come with them than they do with legal highs. Legal highs, such as Methoxatime and Ivory Wave, are incredibly easy to purchase off the Internet. They are sold as plant food to avoid the Medicines Act, labelled with ‘Not for Human Consumption’. People are buying these drugs and using themselves as guinea pigs for research chemicals. But, as with all illegal drugs they are unsafe and bare many dangers for its users. Just because it’s legal, doesn’t mean it is safe. If you or anyone you know has been affected by drugs (including legal highs) contact FRANK for free and confidential any time of day or night on 0800 77 66 00, or visit www.talktofrank.com. You can also text a question to 82111.


is How much will AIDS affect the next generation of Africans?


hope enough? With 15.7 million AIDs orphans across Sub-Saharan Africa, the impact of the virus on children is a stark and heavy reality. Though there are governmental promises for change, is hope really enough to save the next generation?

naomi wilson/marcus faint 39


O

n the edge of a large township, surrounded by barren, dusty hillsides and beneath the hot South African sun lays a small, concrete playground. All that divides it from the dry and rocky exterior and the reality of life beyond is a simple wire fence and two large iron gates. But the bright, smiling faces and playful shouts of the children within these barriers shine like a ray of hope into the darkness of these dismal suburbs. To them, this is security and comfort. This is Ethembeni, a ‘Place of Hope’. And with a staggering 5.6 million people in South Africa living with HIV and AIDs and 1.9 million AIDs orphans in the country, a ‘Place of Hope’ is exactly what these children need. The Ethembeni Project began four years ago in Mpophomeni, a township of 30,000 people outside Howick, South Africa. With the help of faith-based charity, Tearfund, the project aims to provide social care and support to those infected and affected by HIV and AIDs. In Mpophomeni, more than half the population are living with the virus and so the impact of this on children’s lives in the town is heavily felt. With affected families unable to work, poverty rates are high and young parents dying of AIDs-related diseases means orphaned children are left to

Identifying the people in need is incredibly important

support themselves. Tearfund volunteer, Sarah Kennedy has witnessed this impact first hand. By spending one month living in the region and working with Ethembeni, she has seen how this project is offering the hope it promises. “They have three main focuses to the project”, she explains. “One of their focuses was the family centre where I was based for most of the time. They have 70 kids who are apparently some of the most deprived kids in the area. They may be from childlead households, or may be HIV positive themselves. “Basically, Ethembeni provide relief for them during the day, they get food and help with their homework. At the moment they also have links to help get the drugs needed to lessen the symptoms of AIDs, so it is a really important project,” Sarah adds. But the family centre does more than just provide the basic needs of nutrition and health for these vulnerable children. The aim of Ethembeni is also to provide emotional and spiritual support, and simply show them a love their society doesn’t. “Each member of staff is assigned to roughly seven children, and they will talk with them each day, pray with them and counsel them,” says Sarah. “They help them through their big issues, because obviously a lot of the kids have major difficulties coming from their backgrounds.”

Aside from the need for physical and emotional support for children, an almost larger problem for Mpophomeni lurks beneath the surface. In the more conservative culture of the KwaZulu Natal region of the south-east, the problem of HIV and AIDs is rarely spoken of. “It’s a massive taboo in South Africa, I’d assume it’s a massive taboo everywhere, AIDs is just really not talked about at all. If you were talking to an adult who had it they would just say they were ill. They would never tell you they had AIDs,” she says. Naturally, as the people of KwaZulu Natal feel the need to stay silent about it, it’s almost as if the problem of HIV and all its impacts are just swept under society’s carpet. This makes resolving the issue much more difficult as it is impossible to fix a problem which society won’t admit to having. Dr Charlie Besley, Director of Medicine in AIC Kijabe Hospital in Kenya understands the need for working within the society to change perceptions and provide needed medical care. He says: “The key to success is finding the HIV cases within the area, identifying those that need to be on treatment and then getting them to comply and adhere to that treatment. Community support was absolutely key to that.” This makes the work of Ethembeni all the more valuable. As the only family centre of


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“It’s a massive taboo in South Africa, I’d assume it’s a massive taboo anywhere... but you don’t meet a family that hasn’t been infected of affected by HIV” its kind in Mpophomeni, the staff not only ensure that families with HIV are found and placed on an appropriate medical plan, but that sufferers are not subject to the shame that comes with the disease. “All the children are treated the same. I didn’t feel like there was any difference between any of them, they just got on with it. There was equality between every child, no one was singled out or shunned,” says Dr Besley. Though the project may seem like a small measure against a huge problem, Sarah still sees importance of the work of Ethembeni and Tearfund in Mpophomeni. “Although they are only helping 70 kids, that’s still 70 kids whose lives are improving, which is better than none,” he says. “It is definitely a sustainable and important project.” While this ‘Place of Hope’ may provide relief in the KwaZulu Natal region, it is not only South Africa where the effects of HIV are so cruelly evident in children’s lives. The statistics and stories from the country are a mere reflection of the problem across the whole of Sub-Saharan Africa, where it is estimated a staggering 22.5 million people are now living with the virus. By 2015, the United Nations aim to ‘halt and begin to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS’, under the Millennium Development Goals. This is slowly being achieved through the

United Nations Development Programmes (UNDPs) which are set up to provide support and care to infected families. Under the same goal, the UN also aims to increase the school attendance of AIDs orphans aged 10-14. In child-lead households, the responsibility of becoming a stand-in parent often falls on the eldest child, meaning education and a chance to have a normal childhood become impossible. Children orphaned by AIDs therefore suffer much more than just the loss of their parents. But when the statistics are so big, and the impact on children so vast, are these goals really achievable? Dr Besley feels positive that things are slowly moving forward in the battle against the virus. “We have seen huge reductions in the incidence of HIV across the central province of Kenya, we saw the average rate down to 3% after 5 or 6 years,” he says. He also feels the AIDs Relief Programme in AIC Kijabe Hospital - which is one of the biggest in the country - is partly responsible for the increase in life expectancy. In 2004, people were expected to live to an age of 47, but by 2009 that figure had jumped to 59 as result of HIV care and prevention. But in spite of the improvements in numbers, Dr Besley still sees the weight of the impact of the virus on the young. “You don’t meet a family who hasn’t been

The future needs to be addressed

AIDS can crush families

infected or affected by HIV and so the impact of that on families is huge. There are, unfortunately, many orphans who have lost one or both of their parents. You get the eldest child who might only be 12 or 13 looking after maybe four or five brothers and sisters at home. “The other huge impact is on grandparents. You would end up with grandparent-lead households who are like these unsung heroes looking after these orphans of HIV,” explains Dr Besley. Looking forward to the future of Kenya and Sub-Saharan Africa as a whole however, he is hopeful that AIDs Relief Programmes and the help of Non-Governmental Organisations will see big improvements for families and children, but he knows the problem can never disappear completely. “There are hopes ahead for funding and for that magic bullet that is going to knock HIV out completely, but scientifically, I think we are some way from that,” he says. But in the meantime, back in that concrete playground among the dusty South African hillsides, there are still the happy, playful shouts of 70 lucky children. The love and security behind those iron gates continues to be a ray of light in the bleak reality of the problem. For these young smiling faces, this is still ‘Place of Hope’ - and right now, hope is all they need.

41


Gang culture is rife in Britain

the face of They roam the streets in feral packs, orchestrating ruthless attacks and striking fear into the hearts of communities. Welcome to the world of female gangs. Charlotte Webb meets a former gang member disgusted by her past.

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y knuckles were raining down on to the girl below me, she was curled into a ball and crying but I couldn’t stop myself. I swung my leg backwards and slammed it into her ribs with as much force as I could. I glanced to the side and saw my mates joining in. We were like a pack of wolves. “Adrenaline was pumping around my body. I felt unstoppable. My head felt light, almost like I had been drinking. We left her lifeless body and ran before the police arrived. She may have been dead, but we didn’t care. “As we ran through the forest laughing at our latest victim’s attack, not one of us cared if she was dead or alive. Being part of a girl gang was fun because we all had the passion for one thing - violence.”

Natalie Smith was just 14-years-old when her group of school friends grew into a vicious gang. They began by vandalising the local park and youth club, stealing cars and fighting. After a numerous amount of arrests, she received an ASBO (Anti-Social Behaviour Order) and by 17 was put on an electronic tag. Seven years on, she talks about her youth and is disgraced at her past behaviour. Natalie has now turned her life around. She is currently studying at college and is a mum to a three-year-old son. “In school it was cool to be part of a ‘gang’. When you were in one you had to do things to gain respect such as fight. At the time, I didn’t care about my life. I hated school and the only thing I enjoyed was hanging around

in the park or the local youth club causing trouble. “My mum tried her hardest to discipline me, but I was out of control and took no notice. The girls I hung around with liked to fight. I suppose we liked the respect that winning gave us,” she explains. Although this sounds extreme, it is shockingly far from unusual. In 2009, two female gang members were jailed for stripping a victim naked in a street and repeatedly hitting her with belt buckles. The teenage thugs were members of a gang named ‘Girls over Men’. These horrendous girl-lead assaults are becoming increasingly common. In April 2010, two young girls attacked a man in central London for being ‘gay’. Ruby Thomas


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f girl gangs “As we ran through the forest laughing at our latest victim’s attack, not one of us cared if she was dead or alive. Being part of a girl gang was fun because we all had the passion for one thing - violence.” charlotte webb/marcus faint 43


and Rachael Burke went on trial for kicking him in the head and stamping on his chest. He later died of brain damage. “These cases are so evil. Reading the facts in black and white reminds me just how terrible and humiliating my past is. My friends and I were doing this sort of thing every weekend. We would go out looking for trouble, and when we couldn’t find any we started our own. “Looking back I feel so ashamed to say I took part in those crimes. I was a bully and didn’t care who I hurt. I will always be sorry for what I did in the past but I can’t change that, but I can change my future. I am proud to say I have changed. I’m looking forward to getting my qualifications at college, to help me better my life for me and my son,” Natalie says. According to the latest Government statistics, one in four violent attacks now involves a female. While criminal offences by young men have fallen, those committed by girl’s aged ten to 17 have increased by 25% over the past three years. In an unprovoked attack in October 2011, reality sisters Sam and Billie Faiers, from the hit TV series The Only Way Is Essex were beaten up by a group of female thugs. The stars were set upon in a London nightclub, when Essex girl Billie, 21, had her Mulberry handbag stolen on the dance floor. She was then kicked and punched by ten

girls. The same gang later assaulted her sister Sam, 20, after texting her to collect Billie’s stolen belongings. The pair were both treated in hospital, with Sam having to have a brain scan after being knocked unconscious. She also received two black eyes, and a bruised neck and body. Billie was also taken to hospital with a split lip and bruising. This horrific jealousy-fuelled attack is one of many that have occurred in recent months. Melissa James is one such victim. The 21-year-old was attacked in a Bournemouth nightclub. She explains: “I was out with some friends at a club in town, when a girl grabbed my hair and dragged me to the floor. I was being punched repeatedly, with many blows to my head and face. Fists were hammering down on me and I could feel myself becoming light-headed.” Melissa was also being kicked in the ribs whilst the girls attacked her were screaming insults. After a bouncer picked her up, she could feel her nose running with blood and her ribs felt badly bruised. “They said I was dancing like a slut. I was enjoying a good night out with my friends and hadn’t even noticed the group of girls behind me. By the time the police had finally arrived the girls had left the club and nothing was done about it. Since that fight, I have tried to avoid busy nightclubs. I get scared in

case it happens again.” Melissa was left with a distorted nose and mental scars she feels will never heal. In a report about girl gangs, author and journalist Harriet Sergeant explains: “Female violent offences have gone up by a staggering 50 per cent. In 2008, more than half a million assaults were either carried out by women or involved a female in a gang. Over the past ten months, I have interviewed girls all around the country to find out what’s triggering such extreme behaviour. “What was striking is that nearly every violent teenage girl I met could trace her problems back to an absent or abusive father. All reported overwhelming feelings of rage and a sense of powerlessness. And many had turned to gangs to fill the vacuum left by their fathers.” Studies in England and in the U.S. have shown that a sense of abandonment after a divorce or separation can stunt girls emotionally. Without a father’s love and attention, and a sense that they’re valued, young girls tend not to thrive. Taking part in any group violence, for either sex ensures nothing other than a life involving trouble and in the long run, a prison sentence. Although there is one fundamental difference between male and female gang members - the teenage girls will become the next generation of single mothers, raising fatherless children.

A criminal record can ruin future plans


How much is that doggy in the window?

As profit becomes the priority, man’s best friend increasingly falls victim to the malicious intent of puppy farmers.


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icture a dog - your favourite breed. Big eyes and a soppy look on its face… Now picture that dog locked up in a tiny, windowless space; dark, damp, with an empty water bowl, and barely enough space for it to walk two steps. Its coat is matted and dirty, its tail not wagging the way it should; diseased, lonely and desperate for love. As a so-called nation of dog lovers, it’s hard to imagine that this cruelty could happen here. Sadly, it does. Puppy farming is a shocking but, alltoo-real hidden practice in which dogs are bred time and time again, and kept in horrendous conditions. Often compared

“I hate injustice, especially when it comes to animals,” says TV vet Marc Abraham, better known as Marc the Vet. As soon as he begins to talk, the passion and anger comes through in his eyes. Marc appears as the resident vet on shows such as BBC Breakfast News, This Morning and Daybreak. From Brighton, he is currently campaigning to make the selling of

“Puppies cost a lot because of the time and effort spent in raising them, not because we want to make loads of money”

Turning a profit seems to be the motivation

to the battery farming of chickens, these pounds are run solely for profit, with no care for the animals’ welfare. The tiny vulnerable puppies bred here are literally ripped or cut out of their ill-treated mothers when they’re born. Puppies from these farms are more often than not riddled with diseases that are ultimately a death sentence. The parvovirus is all-too common, causing vomiting, diarrhoea, pain, dehydration and depression and most dogs die within 72 hours of contracting this horrific disease.

dogs in pet shops illegal. Breeding dogs properly can be expensive, so these farms will cut corners wherever possible to save, and make, money. These dogs are forced to sleep, eat, urinate, defecate and give birth in the same cramped, confined areas. “Then when they’re infertile, they get strangled or drowned,” Marc explains. The puppies bred in these farms are then sold either online, in publications such as the Friday Ad, or in pet shops. They will often be taken away from their mothers at a

very young age, which is damaging. Puppies rely on their mother’s care and milk for eight weeks, and when deprived of it, they become weak, much more susceptible to diseases and don’t fully develop. To the breeders, this isn’t important. They need to sell them as young as they possibly can. “Puppies become less cute with age, and also they will be marketed as a certain breed, but a lot of them are cross breeds – the younger it is the less likely it will look like a cross breed,” Marc says. Sadly, many of them don’t live long, having not been given the proper health care they should receive – “they’re just like little time-bombs really; their immune system is shot to pieces, and most of them die within 24 hours,” Marc says. And the ones that do live have behavioural problems – they can be aggressive, scared, and difficult to train, due to the lack of affection and socialising. A member from the RSPCA advice team said: “The Breeding of Dogs Act 1991 gives a local authority power to apply for a warrant to enter any premises if it is suspected that dog breeding is being carried out illegally. “However, as the law stands at present, an RSPCA inspector has no right of entry on to private land or premises and, if the owner exercises his legal right to refuse entry, it can be very difficult to obtain the necessary evidence.” Puppy farms are located largely in Wales and Ireland, and it’s estimated around 50,000 puppies from these are brought into England every year. However, due to the difficulty in obtaining search warrants, shutting them down is hard. Marc says: “I campaign a lot in parliament about it – but you could change the laws tomorrow, it wouldn’t make a difference.” Raising awareness of thwe issue is vital in putting a stop to it. Marc says: “It pops up every now and then; they’ll do a Rogue Traders or something on Fake Britain, but it just doesn’t educate enough people. “If you really want to sort it out, you stick an advert in the middle of The X Factor –

Roseanne Field/ Summer Grant 47


What can you do to make sure you don’t buy a farmed puppy?

A familiar site for breeders

“Puppies become less cute with age. They will also be marketed as a certain breed, but a lot of them are crossbreeds – the younger it is, the less likely it will look like a crossbreed” that’s the demographic you need to aim for.” Marc organises a festival in Brighton each year called PUP AID, which aims to teach people about the issue and also raises awareness of his campaign to make selling puppies in pet shops illegal. It attracts celebrities such as Liam Gallagher, and he says this is the key to getting people to listen. Marc strongly believes getting them involved is hugely important – the celebrity-obsessed society we live in means they are massively influential. “A lot if it is small handbag fluffy dogs; celebrity culture is massively to blame,” Marc says. “These people haven’t done anything wrong – but the knock-on effect is just massive. “In L.A. they’ve now managed to switch it round – it’s frowned upon to be seen with a pedigree pup. It is possible.” Gayle Spencer, an accredited dog breeder, says people need to stop buying “fashionable dogs.” She also warns how researching doesn’t always help: “Breeders can register dogs they own in other people’s names – so as far as people are concerned they own two, but in actual factthey have loads more.

“This isn’t classed as puppy farming, but it should be.” Gayle wants people to realise that paying more in the first place is actually saving money in the long run. “Puppies cost a lot because of the time and effort spent in raising them, not because we want to make loads of money.” Accredited breeders will sell dogs at a high price to cover the cost of proper care, whereas farmed puppies are typically sold at around £350. Unfortunately, many people pay this cheaper price as they think they’re making a saving – but in fact the cost can turn out to be much greater. “These people are getting away, literally, with murder,” Marc says. As Christmas comes, so will the advice and warnings. You know the drill: ‘a dog is for life, not just for Christmas.’ They’re wise words. But it’s not just the life of a dog after it is welcomed to a family that’s important. What many of us didn’t realise are the horrific conditions in which some puppies are brought into the world. Raising awareness of this practice is essential to putting a stop to it once and for all.

If buying from a breeder, check all paperwork, and ask to see the puppy interacting with its mother – if you only ask to see the mother they can show you any dog of the same breed Make sure the puppy is at least 8 weeks old – they should not be separated from their mother until at least then If you suspect there is puppy farming involved, don’t take the puppy to save it – this only encourages the practice Don’t be tempted by people who offer to meet elsewhere or even bring the dog to you – they are not doing you a favour Be patient – don’t buy a puppy you think may be from a farm because it is the quicker and easier option If more than two different breeds are advertised by one person/place, they are likely to be farming The best place to get a dog is from either rescue centres or assured dog breeders that are approved by The Kennel Club – but check up on the rescue centre also, as Gayle warns they are not always as they seem


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rt forms can come in many different shapes and styles, tattoos are a visual representation of this and make each clients body an individual work of art. The ever-growing phenomenon to get ‘inked’ is in its prime and more 18 to 25 year olds are going under the needle than ever before. Tattoos have been frowned upon as a profession and interest for decades, however, the cost of a tattoo is not only expensive but, can jeopardise some future career ambitions. To some people tattoos can be an offensive extravert way to express who you are and your personality. With a rising number of companies and workplaces dealing with hands on, face-to-face job roles, appearance matters. It raises the question, does having tattoos jeopardise your chances of success? The cost of individuality may set you back in your career. Many workplaces pride themselves on not discriminating and making each employee able to express their rights. However, the harsh reality is if you’re covered in tattoos your most likely bottom of the pile for any type of office work. An avid tattoo lover Chris Baxter, 25, from London knows how expressing yourself through tattoos can hold you back professionally. Chris had a dream of entering the army and fighting for his country. After visiting an Army Luton career office Chris was greeted by Sargent Mooney a recruitment officer, who told him that they could not further his application due to his extensive artwork on his neck. With this Chris was never shown any type of tattoo policy or given a detailed explanation due to why he not progress with his application. This type of rejection can ruin careers or even shatter childhood dreams. Chris was left feeling disheartened and rejected by the Army, “I’ve always

corrie parris/michael D'aguiar 49


wanted to be in the army and the fact I had visible tattoos never crossed by mind that it could affect my dream,” said Chris. Some employers feel tattoos can hinder job opportunities and jeopardise a company’s name or brand. Northgate Information Solutions, a global HR company, employ people globally and have had to experience employing people who have been heavily tattooed in the past. Northgate aims to be an employer of choice, for people from different backgrounds and through this policy to promote respect for the individual and equality of opportunity. This is the message Northgate hopes to give new employees, however af ter

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speaking to Bev Bulmer a HR business partner she explains the difficulties in recruiting in an office environment. “I would be cautious of recruiting someone with visible tattoos that could cause offence in the office.” Bev goes on to say: “The company promotes being at ease with all aspects of diversity, built on fairness and respect for all.” One of the Managing Directors at the company has several visible tattoos but prefers to keep them covered at work to retain a professional appearance. However the company still stands by the fact they would never not employee someone specifically if they had tattoos. Although these are the policies the company stands by, Bev has admitted there are always doubts and worries when recruiting someone with intense artwork on visible areas of their bodies. This kind of vigilance in employing tattooed people leaves a wide range of young adults unable to get work in an office environment. This eventually often leaves people in their twenties working on building sites, shops and bars on a low wage. Some people believe having lots of tattoos covering visible areas of your body can enhance some job opportunities, but only those within the tattoo industry. Only in the past few

years have tattoo magazines taken off and become a phenomenon. The tattoo market has become a lifestyle for some and an exciting way to live. Many music/modelling opportunities within the rock and urban culture appreciate and sometimes expect you have tattoos to succeed in the industry. However the industry is hard to get into and can often take years and hundreds of auditions to get a break. Tattoo shops have become more noticeable and popular in many towns over the past few years. Apprenticeships in well-established tattoo parlours can mould you into a respected professional artist and allow you to live a comfortable lifestyle. This, however, still is a small market and difficult to get into without years of experience. Having tattoos in this type of industry will be in your advantage more so than a typical office job. London Tattoo is one of the most recognisable tattoo parlours in the UK due to its recent spin off reality television show ‘London Ink’. The show has foreseen many clients wary of where to place their designs on their bodies due to work commitments. A spokesperson for the shop responded with “a lot of clients are specific on where they want their tattoos to be placed due to work commitments, some of their employees and bosses aren’t aware they even have any tattoos.” Within the last few years tattoos have been carefully thought out and the placement of the design on the body. As tattoos become more and more popular, the acceptance in the workplace has become less approved. The cost of individuality could still cost you your career and future ambitions.

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My full-time job is looking for a full-time job... As the number of jobs fall whilst unemployment rises many young people are finding it hard to get a job.

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he sound of the 8am alarm disrupts the silence in the house. Rolling over and glancing at the time before pressing snooze, the morning wakeup call means only one thing to Seonaid - Another day of job hunting, another week of handing out CVs and another month of hearing nothing back. Seonaid Campbell is a NEET - a youngster Not in Education, Employment or Training – the Government’s new term used to describe under-25s out of education and employment. But she is not alone. With the latest employment figures released this month, the biggest changes can be seen in youth unemployment, with 721,000 16-24 year olds out of work and education. Since finishing her Standard Grades at the age of 16, Seonaid started college when she was 17 to study hairdressing. However, even after spending time and money in further education, Seonaid struggled to find any

work, and is still struggling today after over 12 months of being out of education. Living at home with her parents and sister, 20-year-old Seonaid feels that she has little time to do anything else other than continuously try to find work. “I thought it would be really easy for me to find a job, but I have applied to over 10 places and haven’t heard anything back. It makes you want to give up when companies don’t even have the decency to reply to you,” she said With no knowledge from previous jobs and lack of much previous work experience, she finds it hard when applying for any job. Many employers in the past have asked about previous experience or relevant skills that have been learnt, which is almost impossible for her to answer. She said: “I think that finding any work is difficult, especially for people like me at such a young age. Most places, especially

shops that advertise jobs want people with so much previous experience which isn’t me, as I have had none in any of the jobs I am applying for.” The Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) show the statistics for the number of youth unemployment at their highest since records began in 1992. During the last three months, 80,000 people were added to the ranks of the jobless, and out of those 78,000 were under the age of 24. The Jobcentre Plus, a department within the DWP, is one of Britain’s largest databases of job vacancies updated constantly with thousands of new jobs advertised every week. They also publish voluntary work, enabling you to develop new skills you can use to apply to other jobs. However, since signing on at the Job Centre, Seonaid doesn’t feel that the organisation has helped her.


absopindngjhotnrppaijneoopdjnanjojodnaawopers “The reason I signed up at the Job Centre was to get money to help me when looking for jobs, so I could travel places for the interviews,” she said. “In all honesty, I don’t think they have helped me in finding a job as they don’t give you much advice on how to apply for jobs. All they want is for you to go in and sign a piece of paper to say you are looking for work.” Whether it is due to the lack of motivation to go out and find a job or the government’s recent changes regarding education and university tuition fees, the ever-increasing youth unemployment doesn’t seem to be changing for the better, with the number of NEETS reaching a 17-year high. On BBC 3, a programme was launched for five nights in order to attempt to tackle Britain’s youth unemployment. ‘Up For Hire’ followed the steps of four unemployed youths, all either graduates or nongraduates, in an attempt to try various jobs from minimum wage to high paid salary. The programme also offered tips on work experience, career advice and help when

writing a CV. One youth featured in the programme is 23-year-old Ben from Harlow. Since studying an English degree at the University Leaving all education overall with ten GCSE’s, four A-levels and a degree, Ben feels the lack of support after university is non-existent. “I apply for five to ten jobs a week. It’s not the greatest when you’re on jobseeker’s allowance as a graduate.” With the programme airing live and also having Facebook and Twitter links, youths were able to tweet or message into the studio, sharing their experiences, or lack of, in the world of work. Many youths tweeted in during the first episode saying whenever they applied for jobs for the first time, the response they received back was similar too - ‘Sorry to inform you that your application is not being taken any further.’ Could it all be due to the lack of experience? Alongside other organisations helping to tackle youth unemployment, The Princes Trust helps to assist young people in a variety of ways, from building on their

confidence in finding employment, to assisting young people in education and training. They have helped more than 600,000 people, and three in four young people they helped last year moved into work, education or training. On their website they offer courses for people 16-25 who are unemployed, providing motivation, skills and experience. They also help to encourage people to start up business ideas in their Enterprise Programme. In discussion concerning the sudden increase in youth unemployment figures, Martina Milburn, chief executive of The Prince’s Trust, said: “The number of unemployed young people is now almost twice the population of Manchester. If we fail to tackle youth unemployment now, we risk losing this talent forever, which would be a tragedy. “The number of calls to our helpline has doubled in the past six months. We need Government and employers to work with us to turn these young lives around.

“I thought it would be really easy for me to find a job, but I have applied to over 10 places and haven’t heard anything back.”

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The London 2012 Olympics will impact all UK residents

The Olympics...

How will it affect you?

With the excitement and build-up to the event, what can the average resident of the UK expect to gain from being a part of this hosting country?

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ondon 2012: The Olympics. It will bring the games to the UK for the first time in 64 years, and there are plenty of opportunities for the everyday citizen to get involved. Throughout the country, various sporting activities are being put on in order to involve and encourage the nation to get fit and healthy. The ‘City of Sport’ is one such campaign focusing on getting workers from the Square Mile in London fit and active by offering a wide variety of sports for them to take part in. Joanna Foster, part of the City of London Sports Development team, said of the programme: “We have created this project to eliminate the barriers we feel play an

important part in the preventing city workers from participating in sport and activity such as time and cost.” The programme will be offering sports such as tennis, cycling, basketball, table tennis, zumba and Pilates. They will be held at lunchtimes as well as after work, all offering low cost activities in order to target lower paid workers.” Universities across the country are employing Sports Ambassadors to promote and advertise the Olympics. Events are being put on for students to get involved in one way or another. Jamie Gould, Sports Ambassador for Southampton Solent University has been appointed to inspire the university: “My aim is to create a knowledgeable atmosphere for students so that they’re

aware, excited and involved in the Olympics,” Jamie says. The hope is that by encouraging individuals to take part in more sport, obesity levels will see a dramatic decline. In 2009, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) found that 61% of the UK were classed as overweight or obese, and with a population of 61.4 million that’s around 37.4 million people in the UK. Not only that, but by inspiring the 20-something and student demographic of the UK, their knowledge of the importance of sport will be passed on to future generations. The Olympics provide a way for this to happen in a fun way. Almost 8 million tickets have been sold to


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Millions looked to buy tickets

Almost 8 million tickets have been sold to the lucky few to watch the Olympic Games live. the lucky few to watch the Olympic Games live. Where does that leave the other 60 million of us? Tickets were on sale for a sixweek period with prices ranging from £20 to £2,012 and were allocated in a bid to ensure a fair chance for all. Realistically, the number of tickets people had to apply for in order to get even one would have accumulated such a cost that many lower-income families couldn’t take the risk. Young people especially struggled to get tickets, not being able to risk paying too much so only applying for one or none at all. “We were really disappointed when we realised we wouldn’t be able to apply for tickets,” explains Sam Hails, a newly-engaged university graduate. He and his fiancé were unable to take the risk of spending hundreds of pounds on tickets. The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games and Paralympic Games (LOCOG) are responsible for preparing and staging the Olympics. Over £2.2bn is being spent on the Olympics, with the National Lottery providing the majority of the funding. In a time where the country is economically unstable, is any of this money going to make a lasting change? The National Lottery have stated that this money will also be used to fund work towards aiming to increase participation in sport at community and grassroots level, as well as delivering improved community services and facilities. The buildings themselves are also important investments for the country, providing residents with state of the art equipment and sports centres to use at their disposal, both before and after the Olympic

games themselves. One such example is the handball arena in the west of the Olympic Park. After the games, the arena will be adapted to become a multi-use sports centre equipped to cater a wide range of sports. These will include handball, basketball, badminton, boxing, martial arts, netball, table tennis, wheelchair rugby and volleyball. It will benefit the local community, providing a health and fitness suite and café. So why bother getting involved? Why not sit on your sofa and watch the games from there? That’s not actually such a bad idea. One of the other main factors we can embrace is community spirit. The majority of the country will be celebrating the games in one way or another, and if you haven’t got tickets to the event that’s no reason to not be able to be involved. Why not host a party where you watch the games all together at someone’s house, or go to one of the ‘live sites’ - big screens being erected in partnership with Lloyds TSB across the UK, in order to assist people in watching the games together. Community spirit is something that nowadays is sometimes hard to find, and hosting an event as big and as memorable as the Olympic Games is a perfect excuse to cultivate it. A number of the events will be free to watch - the open-air events such as marathons and road races will be taking place in the streets of London. Get there early as it will no doubt be busy, but even stood right at the back the atmosphere will be amazing. The Olympic torch made its way around the country during 2011 prior to the official relay, giving residents of this hosting country

the opportunity to see, touch and have their photo taken with the very torch that will be seen at the opening ceremony in London in 2012. The Official 70-day torch relay will begin in Land’s End, Cornwall and will take a 70-day journey to the Opening ceremony of the London Olympic Games. Travelling 8,000 miles the hope is that the torch will travel within an hour away from 95% of the UK population. So seeing the torch relay is within most of our reach. Schools and colleges across the country are putting on sporting events themed and linked to the Olympics. Lloyds TSB have initiated ‘National School Sport Week’ once a year to inspire 5 million children to try more sport. Sainsbury’s have also initiated the event ‘The Sainsbury’s UK School Games’, which aims to include young people in multi-sports events to both introduce individuals to sport and improve the levels of skill in those already competing in sports. Jamie Gould is also employed to be a point of contact for primary and secondary schools in the area. “As an Olympic Sports Ambassador I want to start off a trend of being active and help create an active lifestyle especially for children. I want to bring communities closer together to reduce crime, obesity and ethnicity problems,” he explains. The new indoor BMX track in Manchester is allowing local children to use the facilities already, at just £2 for a coaching session, inspiring children to take part in a different sport to those usually found in school.

sarah wall/ emma curran 55


Would you abandon your life for God?

Young Nun “I had fallen in love with him and knew that I would willingly give up everything to be with him.� This is the familiar sound of your typical love story. However, this is far from your average romance, this was the moment Sister Maria gave up the possibility of marriage, children and a career to replace with a life of obedience, poverty and chastity as she made the decision to become a nun.


absopindngjhotnrppaijneoopdjnanjojodnaawopers increase in numbers has seen women as young as 16 taking an interest in this life changing commitment Now, whilst most parents feel like there is nothing that their twenty year old daughter could say to surprise them, the words: “mum, dad I’m becoming a nun”, have to be amongst the most shocking. Especially as the only contact they can now have are two meetings a year through an iron grille. 20-year-old, Katy Williams, is considering becoming a nun, after she believes that God saved her from the monster she had become: ‘I was heading off the rails, I was doing so many drugs that I would get in to debt and have to sell my belonging just to get more.’ Katy was just 16 when she first started taking drugs, influenced from hanging

one they are about to embark on. Sister Maria is part of the Dominican Sisters of St Joseph’s convent, a quiet and peaceful sanctuary hidden in the New forest. She joined a convent aged 25 after she found that her life and career as a teacher just wasn’t enough for her: ‘I went to university and studied to be a teacher. I had a very sociable life with lots of friends, but there was something missing in my life. Being a nun has opened my eyes to all the problems in the world. Now I devote my time to praying for people who are in need and help them.’ The women that perform this act often feel that it is their call from God to devote themselves to this life of worship. They are aware of the sacrifices which must be made but believe that by doing this their lives will

“I started having a panic attack and I thought I was going to die”

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ost young people have high hopes and great expectations for their future careers. Amongst the endless possibilities, most dream of becoming a singer or lawyer. However, a growing number of young women are choosing to devote their lives to God by joining a convent. Last year saw the number of women under 40 choosing to become nuns rise from 42% in 2006 to 70% in the last year. This sudden

around with an older group of boys. She says: ‘Before I knew what I was doing I was taking coke more regularly and felt that I needed it in order to have a good time.’ Katy’s aunt, who is very religious, stepped in when her parents didn’t know what else to do. Katy explains, ‘I was very close to my aunt when I was little and I used to go to church with her, but once I grew up I just saw it all as a bit of a joke.’ It wasn’t until Katy had a bad reaction to a drug she had taken that she realised what she was doing to herself: ‘I started having a panic attack and I thought I was going to die, I’ve never been so scared.’ Her aunt went with her to help groups and eventually started convincing her to go to the occasional church ceremony. ‘I just remember feeling stupid at first but, once I was there I felt so relaxed and peaceful. I genuinely believe that God saved me and it doesn’t surprise me that the number of young nuns is increasing, I admire them, and it would be an honour to be part of their world.’ The only thing stopping Katy from joining is the thought of giving up the possibility of having a family. ‘I would love to be a mother, but if God decides that it is more important that I devote my life to him then that’s what I’ll do of course. Nothing could give me more satisfaction.’ Unlike the stereotypical nun, many of these young girls have had friends, boyfriends and have experienced a very different life to the

be fulfilled in a way that only God can do so. Sister Maria appears so content and blissfully happy in this alien environment, compared to the hectic and chaotic modern lifestyle. ‘To have the sense of desire to be quite and around god, it’s just an overwhelming sense of inner peace.’ There are many strict rules that a future nun must follow: The dress code consists of a plain, long tunic, a cloth called a scapular over the shoulders and a solid veil worn on the head. There is also no make-up to be worn at any time and you do not own any possessions apart from what is donated such as a car and food. Nuns are strong believers that everything they want and need will be given to them by God. Their day starts early at 5.45 and consists mainly of prayer and meditation. At 20.15 they will hold ‘the grand silence’ which means that they will stay silent until 8.00am the following morning in order to communicate with God and devote themselves to him. Sister Maria understands the desire to join at such a young age and although they welcome young nuns into their way of life, they realise that it is not a choice to be made in haste, ‘If people have just left university it would be good if they had some work in the world. Not to come straight from university unless it’s an exception. In Katy’s case if she is unsure what she wants she should wait until she is completely prepared to give up everything for a life with God.’

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(WO)MAN ON

Exposure is still limited for women’s football

Why is Women’s football still so far behind the men’s game?

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s the men’s football season is beginning, the first ever season of the Football Association Women’s Super League (WSL) is ending. Plans for a Women’s Super League have been in development for two years, and since the lifting of the ban preventing women playing on football league grounds in 1971, the game has grown at a rapid pace. The result of years of hard work, the WSL is perhaps vindication that the women’s game can survive, and indeed flourish in such a male-dominated sport. One thing it hasn’t changed though is who picks up the silverware. Arsenal Ladies, just as they did in the FA Women’s Premier League, effectively now the second division, have won the title - albeit with a strong challenge from Birmingham Ladies. The Super League is not just another medal. It is the grand new life of women’s football in England.

The 1921 ban on women playing on football league grounds, done so (in the FA’s words) because “the game of football is quite unsuitable for females and ought not to be encouraged”, left the game in ruins. Whilst the men’s game became an entertainment arena for playboys like George Best and Denis Law, the women’s game sat untouched. The decades of male-dominated football created a shield around women’s football. It is no wonder that the first National League for women did not start until a full 20 years after the ban had been lifted in 1971. The rise of the game since then, however, has been quite incredible. The question now is can the women’s game define a new generation of football supporters and is it achievable? Stuart McLaren, football head coach at Loughborough University, believes that it will take a “greater acceptance and appreciation

of the women’s game.” “It starts with young girls that may be interested in playing the game so that they can form a new generation of supporter base. Somehow a transfer of as many supporters of men’s football is needed if women’s football is to challenge the men’s game.” This transfer of supporters has to be one of the key aims of the Super League. However, as with most of football as a whole, nothing is ever plain sailing. The league was originally marketed as a fully professional league, with the top four players on each team being paid an annual salary of £20,000. A sum, no doubt, that would be scoffed at in the men’s game. Eventually the league was classed as semiprofessional, with a few players from each team being classed as fully professional. The organisers have been smart and wise to rein in the finances. Men’s football clubs across the country would be sensible to


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There are 29 million women playing football across the world

follow in their footsteps. Women’s football is also very cheap to watch. An adult season ticket at Arsenal Ladies will cost you £20. This covers all seven home matches played in the WSL and FA cup home matches. Still, the challenge is overwhelming. Football has been passed down through generations. Men’s clubs have histories that go back to the very roots of modern football. It may be that we do not see the impact the women’s game can have for another 40 years. Nevertheless times are changing. Earlier this year, broadcaster ESPN secured the rights to show live WSL action, and The 2011 Women’s World Cup in Germany attracted large crowds, with the final being watched by 48,817 fans. Crowds in the United States regularly break the 3,000 mark - a figure comparable with lower league football in England. FIFA estimates that there are 29 million

women playing football across the world, with many of the top players playing in the United States. A 2011 Sport England Active People survey found that 275,300 adult women play some form of football in England - a number which makes women’s football the third largest team sport behind, you guessed it: men’s football and men’s cricket. “The Women’s Super League has raised the profile of women’s football in England and we hope this has a positive impact on the number of women and girls participating,” says Lauren Brown, Communications Officer at Sport England. If the fans are there and the stadia exist, and 29 million women are competing worldwide, why does the game still lag behind? Sport England research shows that in the period from October 2007 – October 2008, 146,800 females played football at least once a week. The same study in April 2010 – April 2011 shows that the figure rose by 19,300. Interestingly, the number of men playing at least once a week fell by 29,500. The crux of the argument is that although the men’s number fell it still holds a huge numerical advantage - 1,997,900 men play the game once a week. Young girls need to be engaged with football the same way young boys are. If this stereotype can be broken then we could see a generation of footballers where women are fully equal, in all aspects. According to the FA, 42% of the 2.5 million children who took part in the FA Tesco Skills

programme in the last three years were girls. Whilst both the young girls taking part in skills programmes and the semi-professional women playing at World Cup matches have been accepted by the football public as having a place in the game, it seems hard for men to accept them as equals. Media coverage is unequal. Wages are unequal. Crowds are unequal. The back pages of the Sunday tabloids never cover it in any great detail and broadcasters such as the BBC rarely show more than three live matches a season. “I think that the general perception of the average male football fan is that the women’s game is too slow, and that the players are not capable of delivering a type of football comparable to the male game,” says Stuart. “Better promotion of female role models from within the game, like ex US international Mia Hamm, could have a great impact as well as specific programs targeting young girls and attracting them to the game from an early age. Better television coverage of the Women’s Super League would have a massive impact,” he adds. If women’s football can break the monopoly of the men’s game and secure similarly huge television deals – the deal with ESPN covered only six live games - it will be able to invest in stadia and attract the best female players from across the globe. Only then will it be able to define a generation. The WSL will be hoping it is not a one season wonder.

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The top five pioneers of women’S football...

- Vic Akers spent 22 years as manager of the all-conquering Arsenal Ladies. - Under Akers’ influence the team won a staggering 32 honours, including the the first British team to win the Women’s UEFA Cup in 2007. - In 2010, Akers received an OBE in recognition of his achievements in the women’s game and, despite resigning as manager in 2009, continues to work for Arsenal’s men’s football club to this day.

- Dick, Kerr Ladies –Formed at a munitions factory in Preston during World War One, were the first ladies team to play an international match in the spring of 1920. In the same year they were granted permission to play a match at night, with a white football. - The club holds the distinction of having the highest crowd ever recorded for a women’s game, on Boxing Day 1920, 53,000 fans packed into Goodison Park to see the team play St Helen Ladies.

- Marta Silva, The Brazilian international, has been named as Fifa’s World Player of the Year five times in succession, and is the world’s highest paid female player. - Marta was first spotted at the age of 14 by the Brazilian team, Vasco de Gama, and later moved to both Sweden and the USA. She has scored 76 goals in 69 games for her country.

- Hope Powell has been the head coach of the England women’s national team since June 1998 - She was the first full time coach, the youngest ever England coach, and the first female England coach. - In 2002, Powell was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s birthday honours list, and the following year became the first woman to attain the UEFA pro licence. In 2011 she was confirmed as the head coach of the Great Britain women’s football team for the London 2012 Olympics.

- Kelly Smith is undoubtedly the ‘David Beckham’ of the female football world. - In total ,Smith has scored 43 goals in 104 caps, and whilst at Arsenal won four Women’s Premier League titles, three FA Cup medals, four Premier League Cups, and the 2007 Women’s UEFA Cup. - She left Arsenal Ladies in 2009 to join the Boston Breakers in the United States.


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64 Emeli sande 68 film reviews 70 top films 2011 72 festive faves 74 believing in santa 76 Fay Rusling 78 bromance 80 top albums/books 2011 82 budget road trip 86 new york 88 canada tour

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Leading the way for British talent

steps to

Heaven Emeli SandÊ radiates uniqueness. From her elevated quiff and tomboy tendencies to her sensationally raw voice... say hello to the Brit Awards Critics’ Choice Winner.


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nchanted by her father’s choice of music, the soulful-sounds of Nina Simone filled the room; a young girl closes her eyes and envisions her own melodic tones reaching out to a generation. Fast forward a decade and those dreams have now become a reality for the UK’s latest singing sensation. Launched into the spotlight in 2009, Emeli Sandé appeared alongside British rapper Chipmunk, on his top 10 single ‘Diamond rings’. It was to be the start of what critics are calling a ‘meteoric rise to fame’. Notching up several impressive collaborations since, the

24-year-old has reached the top of the charts with Professor Green and filling dancefloors with the help of Tinie Tempah. Paving the way for her debut single ‘Heaven’, which shot to No.2 in the UK charts. Now it’s her turn to go solo - a debut single which stormed the charts to an award winning future predicted, everything she touches turns to musical gold. Sandé sharpened her song writing skills and formed a partnership with grime producer ‘Naughty Boy’. After the success of ‘Diamond rings’, industry giants came calling. To date the budding songstress has written for

an array of musical royalty, ranging from Susan Boyle, to Cheryl Cole and many in between. Even media mogul, Simon Cowell, named Emeli his “favourite songwriter at the minute”. She holds the sheer ability to capture the essence of an emotion, and paint a metaphorical picture with her words. The intense lyrics lead the imagination to the graphic imagery behind the song. In her song ‘Kill the boy’ she sings: “I walk around with murder in my eyes, I’m gonna turn my baby blue, I practiced in the mirror hundred times, but still can’t bring myself to shoot”. The ‘Heaven’ singer songwriter delves into the dark side, specialising in songs about heartache, depression and sorrow. Treating her songs like works of art, she aims to create impact with her words – a powerful attribute for an artist to have. Proud parents Diane and Joel Sandé named their daughter Adele Emeli Sandé, but she consciously dropped her first name when singer Adele hit the charts. At seven her parents recognised her creative musical spark and brought her, a piano. Unbeknown to them, this was her first step to stardom Growing up in Aberdeenshire, writing and performing her own songs became precedence; she had a rare gift many other artists’ lacked. The infatuation with music grew with her, but she found herself following a different path. Enrolling on a clinical neuroscience degree at Glasgow University, Emeli believed medicine was the correct route to follow. Four years later, her passion for music still remained. Education was important but her infatuation was with song writing. It was tough decision to make, but she followed her heart and began pursuing her music career. For now though, Emeli’s priorities lie firmly on her forth-coming album, ‘Our Version of Events’ due to be released in February 2012. Continuing to grab unlikely attention, the highflying soloist most recent conquest is her childhood icon, Alicia Keys. From a young age Emeli idolised the US superstar and her mesmerising performances. So song-writing together has fulfilled one of her biggest dreams to date. Many elements highlight her sheer individuality. The partly shaved head and body art scream personality, she’s no ‘girlpowered’ pop singer, and she is here to carve her mark – a niche in her own right. The future looks bright for the artistic, medical school dropout. The honesty and rawness in her songs could possibly lead to her becoming the UK’s next big thing. Potential rivals such as Jessie J and Katy B should step aside because I can’t see anything holding back this hugely acclaimed star from reached the top.

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ind her success h e b y r o t s e h t s l ree in medicine. eli Sande revea g m e E d , l n o a ic ic g in l in c is r r e e h h T ove for music to l r e h , d o o h d il h c from her

Hype: Emeli you’ve made a real connection with the youth of today, why do you think that is? Emeli: I think maybe its because a lot of people underestimate how intelligent young people are. I remember feeling very frustrated when I was young that there was very few artists played on the radio that I could identify with. I always aim to be as honest as I can with my music and never underestimate the listener. I hope that they hear something they can identify with in my music. Hype: You have been named a role model for young people because you’ve worked so hard, did you set out to be one? Emeli: I hope I can be a good role model! I’d love to give a positive message. Everything is possible if you’re willing to work hard for it. Hype: So in the beginning was your passion singing or song writing? Emeli: I have always sung since I was really little. But my passion is writing, your words will last longer than your voice will ever last. So if you can get them on point make sure they are worthy of being remembered. Hype: Growing up who was the biggest inspiration to follow your dream? Emeli: Nina Simone was a great inspiration to me. She was an incredible musician who worked incredibly hard to achieve incredible things in her career. Her story taught me that we should never underestimate the power of music. Hype: Have you always been musically

gifted? Emeli: Well, my dad is quite musical and has a really good ear but never had the money or the opportunity to learn formally. There was always a lot of music and appreciation of it in the house. My mum hates it when I say she isn’t musical at all but she is very good at story telling so I think it’s a combination of the two. I was lucky enough I had his ear and could be trained. Hype: Most children hate their parent’s music, but it sounds like your Dad’s choices in music really influenced you? Emeli: Yeah. My dad loved Anita Baker. But the first person I fell in love with was Nina Simone. I remember being embarrassed because it was dad’s music but she made me want to play piano and be a songwriter. We didn’t have a piano when I was in primary school so every time I could get in I would play but then we got one when realised I was quite serious and started getting lessons which am so glad about. Hype: Would I be right in saying the piano is your favourite instrument? Emeli: The piano is so diverse and great for song writing and I love guitar too as it’s so easy to pick up and take everywhere. Hype: Was there a specific moment it became more than hobby? Emeli: I remember when I was 7 and thought about wanting to be a singer. I know that sounds silly as I was in a tiny village

in Scotland but I just had a feeling. I think that’s when my parents realised. Hype: Songwriters have many influences when it comes to their music. What do you think influenced your writing? Emeli: I always think why can’t pop be poetic. Why do we have to sacrifice lyric to be catchy. Sometimes I listen to lyrics and think that’s allowed? But there are great songs around. I think A Team is very poetic. I read a lot. I think the more you read the better you’ll become. Always write when in the writer mode. Having had big discussions. When am on the road I’m in performer mode and I miss writing heaps. Hype: What’s the best advice you can give anyone setting out following their dreams (at university or outside university) Emeli: I would say, every day remind yourself of why you’re doing it and why you want it so bad. Expect people to doubt you, expect knock backs but remember that you know best. Most importantly stay focused on the reason you want it -- one of my favourite quotes is “Chase the dream, not the competition”. Hype: Have any of your dreams turned into a reality? Emeli: At the beginning of the year I had this white board in my room and I wrote down who I wanted to write for, and what I want to do this year. I did actually have Susan Boyle, Alicia Keys, on there. Hype: So did you ever imagine that one day


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you and Alicia Keys would be writing songs together? Emeli: Nah come on! I really wanted to write for her but I didn’t know how. So I thought lets just see what happens. She asked me out of the blue to support her at the Royal Albert Hall. I think she’d heard some stuff online. I stuck around at the end of the gig to maybe meet her but she was super busy. But then my A&R was over in the US with Professor Green in the same studio and said to check out my stuff. She rang two weeks later and said she’d love to play with me so I was like wow. Hype: Wow I bet you couldn’t believe your luck? Emeli: I couldn’t. I was quite nervous to meet her but she’s a really cool girl and very humble. She’s not a diva. She’s super intelligent and you could tell she was so for making the music. Our priority was to write great songs –nothing else. I had to forget she was a multi-million selling artist. To find someone you can write well with is very rare. Even if she wasn’t Alicia Keys it would’ve been a great session. Hype: What’s your’re biggest achievement to date? Emeli: Being nominated for the Brits critics choice award Hype: What’s your ultimate dream you still have to achieve? Emeli: Having a number 1 album!

Hype: You have written for such a lot of urban artists... Emeli: I guess it’s because I met Naughty Boy who as a producer was very connected with the urban scene. He knew Stephen and Chipmunk. So I got a reputation for writing choruses for rappers via word of mouth. Then you start saying who’d you like to write for then Simon Cowell starts asking for songs. Hype: There has been a lot of debate about your lyrics being dark… Emeli: People are thinking too much into my lyrics. They are honest and emotive and make you think. Hype: You’re not only musically gifted but academically to? Emeli: In my heart I will always be a musician but there was a time I also wanted to be a doctor too. I decided to enrol on a clinical neuroscience degree at Glasgow University. I remember when my parents dropped me off. They bought me a keyboard so I could write and chill out between studying. My mums said don’t forget you’re a musician. So that was really nice they believed that. It helps me relax in these grotty student halls. Hype: Was that hard balancing your studies and your music? Emeli: I couldn’t write about anything as I was either in the library or home- I wasn’t experiencing anything apart from medicine. Hype: When did it all become too much to

cope with? Emeli: After my 4th year I’d met Naughty Boy and we’d written Diamond Rings. That had gone to number 6 in the charts and I was still balancing things. Then I got published in the summer. That’s when I started believing I might have a shot at this. I saw the window opening, you’re either going to do it now or never. Hype: Do you regret not completing your degree? Emeli: I do as hate starting something and not finishing. I did graduate as that extra year gave me honours in neuroscience. But when you start to be a doctor you want to finish. But you can’t have everything. Singing is my natural place. I’m so happy but I would love to have a doctor’s degree on the wall next to a discs. Hype: So what’s next for you? Emeli: My album is out in February 2012, it’s so exciting! Hype: If you could work with any one in the world that you haven’t worked with yet, who would it be? Emeli: I’m hoping to hook up with John legend soon. Of course Chris Martin would be a dream come true. He’s one of the best writers of our generation After this interview, Emeli went on to win the Critics’ Choice Award at the Brits Awards 2011.

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THE MUPPETS How will the old franchise fare?

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STARRING Kermit The Frog, Miss Piggy, Jason Segal, Amy Adams DIRECTOR James Bobin

t’s been 12 years since we last saw The Muppets on the big screen. Just what have they been up to all these years? Well, it turns out Fozzie Bear is performing in a tribute band called The Moopets, Miss Piggy is a fashion editor, Animal is undergoing anger management while Gonzo has gone into the plumbing business. It’s up to Kermit the Frog and Walter, the world’s biggest Muppets fan, to reunite the gang and save the Muppet Theatre after the crotchety old pair Statler and Waldorf attempt to sell it. Helping them out along the way is Gary (Jason Segel), Walter’s roommate, and his girlfriend Mary (Amy Adams). A huge Muppets fan, it was Jason Segel that helped get the ball rolling on this new instalment when he pitched the idea to Disney in 2008. So, at least we know who to thank for making Disney realise we all need some more Muppets in our lives. Over the last few years Segel has been

going from strength to strength, with a string of comedy roles under his belt including Forgetting Sarah Marshall and I Love You, Man. He’s perhaps best known for appearing in the hugely popular TV series How I Met Your Mother. Acting isn’t Segel’s only talent though, he helped to write both The Muppets and Get Him To The Greek. He looks set to become one of the most promising comedy stars over the next few years. Segel’s co-star is no less talented however. Amy Adams is fast becoming one of the most in-demand actresses in Hollywood. Having first made an impression in 2005 with Junebug, Adam’s earned an Oscar nomination last year for her part in The Fighter. Don’t worry though, she’s not about to challenge Animal to a boxing match, she’s more than capable of fantastic comedy roles too. Not only that, but Adams also shows off her singing talents in The Muppets. She makes the perfect sidekick to Kermit and

friends, what more could you want? Well, how about a director who has helped to create some of the most memorably funny characters on British television? James Bobin is responsible for Ali G, Borat and Bruno as well as being the co-creator of Flight of the Conchords. This will be his first time directing a feature film, but with such a flawless career in TV there’s no doubt that he’s the man to bring the Muppets back to the big screen. With such a legacy to live up to, The Muppets gang had a tough job ahead of them. After a long marketing campaign with some hilarious spoof trailers and posters, it turns out that Kermit and friends were more than up to the task. The film combines comedy with some wonderful musical segments in classic Muppets style, as well as treating us to a slew of celebrity cameos. It might not be easy being green, but Kermit certainly makes it look simple.


J Edgar

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STARRING Leonardo DiCaprio, Naomi Watts DIRECTOR Clint Eastwood

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A fascinating look at the FBI founders career caption for image

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s we hurtle ever closer to 2012 we find ourselves in the midst of Oscar season. With scores of films all vying for the attention of the Academy Awards it’s easy to feel lost. Invariably, it’s impossible to catch them all at the cinema but J. Edgar commands your attention. With veteran Clint Eastwood in the director’s chair, and DiCaprio in the titular role you’re guaranteed quality. John Edgar Hoover was the face of law enforcement in America for nearly five decades, both feared and admired in his role of FBI Director. He ran gangsters out of town, tapped phones and held top secret dossiers on everyone from Communist Party members to celebrities. Behind closed doors however Hoover had his own secrets. He would spend every day together with his assistant director Clyde Tolson. They drove to work together, had lunch together, holidayed together and lived together, with neither of them ever having married. Almost four decades after Hoover’s death, director Clint Eastwood explores the life

both public and private of one of America’s most intriguing authority figures. Eastwood first entered the public eye for his acting roles, perhaps his most famous being in Sergio Leone’s spaghetti western films. Since then Eastwood has appeared in countless films, as well as taking on producer and composer duties. His first time directing was in 1971 with Play Misty for Me which was warmly received by critics. Eastwood’s directorial skills haven’t gone unnoticed; he won the Academy Award for Best Director twice, in 1992 for Unforgiven and 2004 for Million Dollar Baby. Clear some space on the mantle Clint, you just might have another on the way. Playing the lead role is Leonardo DiCaprio, himself no stranger to awards. Most recently gaining numerous best actor nominations for last year’s Inception. After an inauspicious debut in straight-to-video b-movie Critters 3, DiCaprio has gone from strength to strength becoming one of the best loved actors of his generation. He’s ably shown a remarkable talent for playing a

variety of roles, and J. Edgar proves he can do historical biopics too. Playing Helen Gandy, Hoover’s loyal secretary, is Naomi Watts – last seen alongside Daniel Craig in Dream House. Much like DiCaprio, the English actress also appeared in shoddy horror sequels such as Children of the Corn IV: The Gathering, but broke out with her role in David Lynch’s cult classic Mulholland Drive. Although not as used to the Oscar’s as her director or co-star, Watts earned a best actress nomination for her role in 21 Grams. Perhaps this time around she’ll come out on top. With an industry veteran like Eastwood behind the camera, and some of the most exciting talent in Hollywood involved you can be certain of a sure fire hit. J. Edgar intelligently explores the career and private life of an enigmatic and powerful figure. The story, though quintessentially American, is one that anybody can invest some time in. After all, everyone has their secrets.

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The Hangover Part 2

The fantastic four are back and this time celebrating Stu’s wedding in Thailand. It ticks all the gross-out boxes and sticks firmly to the successful formula of the first film. Monks and Monkeys join them on their quest to find Stu’s wife-to-be younger brother.

The Inbetweeners movie

The four hapless teenagers fly to Malia in hope of endless amounts of clunge. The inevitable cringing and awkward situations unfold as Will, Simon, Jay and Neil engage in all the delights of the Crete Isle. Storing money up bums and early morning fellatio are just some of the many delights!

Rise of the planet of the apes Short of going to the zoo and climbing into the gorilla pen, apes have never looked so real. James Franco leads the cast as a scientist looking to find a cure for Alzheimer’s. The cure is being tested on a group of apes but develops their intelligence to that of humans.

Tinker Tailor soldier spy This critically acclaimed spy movie is more realistic than any of the James Bond films. Based on the classic novel this intelligent espionage thriller is set in a perfectly re-created seventies Britain. A collection of Blighty’s finest acting talent is on display including Gary Oldman, Tom Hardy, and Colin Firth.

Hobo With a shotgun

Rutger Hauer is a homeless man with a gun, or better known as Hobo with a Shotgun. This modern day exploitation film was only given a small cinema release but don’t let that put you off. With more action than a weekend in Libya this small-budget feature is a must.

HUgo super 8 Drive

Martin Scorcese directs this magical movie set in a Paris train station in the 1930’s. Shot in 3D the film depicts the life of Hugo, an orphan who lives in the walls of a train station. The young Hugo is looking to build the mysterious automaton, continuing the work that his now dead father once began.

J.J. Abrams presents this coming-of-age flick about a group of young children who are making a home-movie, but in the process end up witnessing a massive train crash. In the wake of the crash the kids find strange cubes and their quiet town becomes an extra-terrestrial warzone.

Hollywood man of the moment, Ryan Gosling, flexes his acting muscles in this ultra-violent movie about a Hollywood stuntman who earns extra bucks at night as a getaway driver. The movie is directed by Danishman Nichols Winding Refn, who burst onto the scene with biography flick Bronson. Tom Whitehead/Michael D`Aguiar 71


Festive Favourites It’s after Christmas dinner and the aroma of turkey and pudding is fresh in the air. The family gathers round the telly, mulled wine and mince pies in hand, for a classic Christmas custom: The Christmas film. But with such a myriad of holiday movies, the choice can be a tricky one. The Hype offers you this list of three features guaranteed to warm your cockles.

Arthur Christmas (U, 2011)

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f the two Aardman films, the other being the disappointing Flushed Way, to eschew their hand made charm, Arthur Christmas is a feature Christmas classic in the making. Written with warmth and Aardman’s trademark universal humour by Peter Bayhnham and writer/director Sarah Smith, the film deals with the surprisingly adult themed commercialisation of Christmas. Christmas is a business, and like so many of recent times, has streamlined and computerized, prompting the question that maybe some of the magic has gone out of Christmas? When a child is accidentally missed by Santa ‘Malcolm’ Claus (Jim Broadbent), its up to his son Arthur (James McAvoy) and retired ‘Grandsanta’ (Bill Nighy) to save the day. The film then takes the form of a charming road trip powered by Arthur’s rampant enthusiasm. McAvoy’s voice acting lends Arthur the air of a ball of festive flailing joy, wrapped up in a naff Christmas jumper, children will connect everywhere with his earnest, innocent joy for the holiday season. Packed full of the Aardman blend of gentle sarcasm and cracking visual gags, the film may feel a little flabby around the middle, guilty of one too many pies, the film finds heart in pulling off an ending that while enthusiastic about the indefinable magic of Christmas, avoids laying on the syrup too thickly, leaving you with nothing but cheer.


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It’s A Wonderful Life (U, 1946)

It’s not every bona fide Christmas classic that begins with a man contemplating suicide. But director Frank Capra’s masterpiece has been a Christmas fixture for over sixty years and with good reason. A tale of the restorative power of Christmas, Jimmy Stewart owns the film as down on his luck George Bailey, who’s Savings and Loans company, the only thing keeping the town out of the grip of evil banker (there’s a surprise) Potter, is failing is the catalyst for George’s emotional turmoil, where the film begins. George’s life flashes before his eyes – his failed ambition to travel the globe and his childhood romance, and the failure of his company, enough to push him over the edge. He is saved by the appearance of Angel Clarence, played to perfection by an enchanting Henry Travers, who gives George a glimpse of what his life would be like if he had never existed. There’s a reason these kind of films are now known as “Capra-esque” – the director is clearly in his element here. The tone is beautifully rendered and orchestrated, Capra deftly able to ensure that the laughs are augmented to be as big as they can be, making the film able to move from touching sentiment and exuberant charm with ease. Full of multi coloured characters, and under pinned by an interesting psychological idea, the film is a triumphant study on the power of community. Stewart is pitch perfect as a small time dreamer, and his journey back from the edge is a truly joyous sleigh ride.

The Muppet Christmas Carol (U, 1992) Before the UK is hit in a frog shaped tidal wave when the Muppet’s Movie is released in February, it’s more than worth taking a look at this hilariously heartwarming reimagining of Dickens’s vintage tale of yuletide retribution. From the opening shots of the gorgeous Victorian London, brought the vivid life by fantastic sets, the spark of Christmas magic is in the air. As people are so familiar with the Muppets, the script allows them free reign to be who they are. The Muppets fit their rolls like a glove. Kermit and Miss Piggy are excellent as the Crachits, but the most fun to be had is certainly to be found with Gonzo the Great narrating as Charles Dickens himself. Michael Caine is clearly having a hoot playing Scrooge, wonderfully knowing to underplay and leave centre stage to the puppets. You can almost forgive his singing. Fantastically funny, there’s a belly laugh every two minutes, with perfect Muppet casting and an excellent Michael Caine, The Muppets Christmas Carol is welcome remedy to stuffy interpretations of Dickens’ past.

alec malloy/stephanie ghatta 73


Old Saint Nick

Believing in Santa

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he crisp white snow settled in the garden, the delicate wrapping of presents neatly stacked underneath the shimmering, tinsel covered tree - it has arrived. Quickly putting on your slippers and eagerly rushing downstairs to catch a glimpse of your bulky looking stocking, and the remains of the cookies and milk left out. The thing that you have been waiting for all year round, Santa has been! But at what age do we stop believing in Santa Claus? Does this mean that the magic of Christmas is over, or can the spirit be kept alive? The transition from being caught up amongst the enchanting season filled with gifts, Christmas carols, and upmost belief - to Christmas time when you’re older, can still be just as magical according to Abbey Sutcliffe. Abbey, 25, is a big kid when it comes to this time of year: “I absolutely love Christmas. When I first discovered that Santa Claus wasn’t real I was fine, it didn’t really affect the time that I had or how much I enjoyed myself.” She mentions. Abbey goes all out at Christmas time, making the most of the festive season:

“Christmas means a lot to me, I like it when my family and friends all come together to celebrate – I hold a huge party every year at my house filled lots of glittering decorations, presents, mistletoe and lots of food and alcohol! I am afraid to say that I am, in fact, that one irritating neighbour with the ridiculously oversized inflatable Santa in the front garden.” She laughs. Nineteen-year-old Nick Sarl’s, views on Christmas time, however, is unfortunately not quite as merry: “Christmas doesn’t excite me at all anymore.” he says, explaining how his Christmas is just another normal day. “In fact I don’t really like it. We don’t do all of the traditional things that everyone else I know does, we don’t sit down for a Christmas dinner, we don’t spend the day with our family, or even each other anymore to be honest.” He continues: “I would agree that Christmas is more for kids, there’s no real spirit about it when you grow up.” Yet Abbey still believes that the magic can be kept alive regardless of age, and still looks forward to waking up on Christmas morning and opening her stocking: “For me, Christmas isn’t all about the presents,

it’s about giving more so than receiving and about having fun with loved ones. One day when I have a family of my own I will teach my children the same.” December as a child is all about the fairytale that makes up Christmas; the lead up to the holiday is just as good as the day itself. Being dragged around the hundredth garden centre of the day in order to hunt down the biggest Christmas tree is something that Nick used to do every Christmas when he was younger. It was his favourite time of the year – the week leading up to Christmas day he would sit for hours on end watching endless movies like Elf, A Christmas Carol, and Home Alone 1, 2 and 3. Nowadays, the week before Christmas is not one that Nick enjoys; replacing the movies with last minute packing to go on yet another Christmas holiday: “I used to love Christmas when I was younger, everything about it excited me. I remember sitting and writing my stocking list and walking to the post box with my Mum where I would send my letter to the North Pole. At least, that’s where I thought it was going.” Sadly for Nick, the spirit of Christmas died straight after he grew out of posting his


absopindngjhotnrppaijneoopdjnanjojodnaawopers letters to Santa Claus, unlike Abbey’s family, Nick’s parents now put no effort into making Christmas a special occasion to celebrate, instead, using it as an excuse to jet off and soak up some sun. Christmas time is different for everyone; some people prefer to go on a holiday, some of the more unfortunate people don’t have anyone to celebrate Christmas with, some enjoy celebrating the festive season with their loved ones, and some get wrapped up in the fantasy that is Christmas time, no matter how old they are. Psychologist Graham Jones explains his views on the matter, and whether Christmas can be just as special every year: “In secular homes and societies, children may well have a different attitude to Christmas as they grow up - but then again, they may not. “For instance, if a family simply thinks that Christmas is about fun, sharing a happy time with the family and enjoying each other’s company, things are unlikely to change as

children grow up. But if the home focus is on Santa and when that myth is burst, then a child’s view of Christmas will change. In other words, whether or not we change our view of Christmas as we grow up depends upon family, our religion and the wider society in which we live.” Family, as Graham Jones mentions, is the one thing that has let Nick down: “Deep down I suppose I am disappointed that we go away every Christmas; I think that we have forgotten the meaning of celebrating it now – when I was younger my parents had to make it magical, now I suppose they choose not to. I am used to it now, that’s how I have been brought up; it’s not that bad – it’s just another day of the year.” However, Nick’s story doesn’t have to be the case as we get older - Graham continues: “As for the magic “dying” when Santa is revealed as a fairy tale, again that all depends. Suggesting that there is some magic to die rather implies a romantic view of childhood

where children are little innocent beings. That’s not the view so much in Holland, for instance, where their version of Santa arrives on 6th December and where children are not perceived in such a romantic light as in the UK.” For some the magic will never die, and the spirit of Christmas will continue forever - an example of this belief is apparent in Holland. Graham finishes: “The result is that in Holland many adults still love the festival early in December - for them the “magic” has continued. What this suggests is that any “magic” of Christmas is a social construct dependent upon the prevalent discourse within each society. “Here in the UK we have a very romantic, childhood is innocence view - but that is not shared worldwide, so again whether or not the “magic” dies is dependent upon a range of factors.” Either way, Christmas should be a day spent with family celebrating time together.

A time for all to rejoice

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An Interview with Fay Rusling

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idden somewhere within Southampton is a comedy writer who has lent her talent to many a popular television series from Greenwing to Smack the Pony. With the arrival of Campus, the most twisted and quirky comedy to grace Channel 4, Fay Rusling has another gem to boast in her port folio. After the phenomenal success of Greenwing fans have been waiting with bated breath for its creators to offer something else. Finally they came up with a show that Rusling herself describes as ‘a university on acid.’ Campus is set in the fictional Kirke University and follows several members of staff including the morally dubious Vice Chancellor Jonty de Wolfe as they search for ways to fix and survive a £2,000,000 accounting error. “It’s a weird alternate world where the characters say the things we would probably never get away with saying,” Rusling explains, “but hopefully it’s based in some emotional truth.” Throughout the seven episode series runs a complicated love triangle between

should happen and who the characters should get together with,” she explains, “but the characters don’t or are too scared to do anything about it.” As with every other love triangle there is always someone who attracts the sympathy of the writer’s and the audience, “I feel sorry for Flatpack,” Rusling says, “he’s like a loveable puppy, so bouncy and keen, good-looking and sweet. He’s a bit of a loveable bimbo.” Rusling did not start out as a writer, in fact that only crossed her mind when she bumped into long time comedy partner Oriane Messina on stage. They were both touring Agatha Christie plays, Messina was the doctor’s assistant while Rusling played a female detective. “We bonded and giggled our way around England for 12 weeks,” she says. “Oriane asked if I had ever written to which I said no, I can barely spell and she said ‘don’t worry computers do that.’” After this they started writing sketches together that they would perform. Rusling describes them as ‘pretty crap’ but when an opportunity to write for a new sitcom arose

I love writing the Matt Beer, Flatpack and Imogen storyline. It works because the audience know what should happen and who the characters should get together with, but the characters don’t or are too scared to do anything about it. mathematics senior lecturer and best-selling author Imogen Moffat, English professor Matt Beer and post-graduate student Flatpack, so named because the writers wanted ‘a sexy guy ‘put together well’ on the outside but a little wooden on the inside.’ And for Rusling it’s this side-plot that she most enjoys writing. “I love writing the Matt Beer, Flatpack and Imogen storyline. It works because the audience know what

summer grant/emma curran

these sketches played a role in landing them their first writing job together. “We heard about a pilot that had been made called Smack the Pony,” Rusling explains. “We sent our sketches in and we were called in for a meeting with the show’s producer Victoria Pile. “She said ‘I can’t use any of these sketches but I think you have something, can you write like this?’ then she showed us the pilot.

We went off and wrote some sketches and managed to get 14 in the first series and from then the door opened,” Rusling explains and then adds, “and if it didn’t we shoved it open.” Since then Rusling has gone on to work with Pile on both Greenwing and Campus and admires the way the producer lets her work: “Victoria allows us to improvise through writing, we all sit down and come up with the story and story strands and then go off and write. Aside from the love triangle it’s great just to write some of the politically incorrect filth for the Vice Chancellor. We are very lucky we get to write anything we want.” Rusling, who also does voice-overs for the Vanish and Benecol adverts, does most of her work from Southampton, preferring to be among people while she writes. “All the writers work separately,” she explains. “I sometimes work from home, but I don’t get much done as I’m too busy pottering around putting off work. So mainly I work at a business centre near Southampton airport called the Regus. I like being around people and get chatting to people when I’m making coffee, it makes writing less lonely.” As well as being inspired by people around her, Rusling researched the subject of university life, even if it is channelled in a surreal way, by spending the day at Kent University. “We spoke to some of the lecturers,” Rusling says. “I never went to university and I was worried that I wouldn’t know the world or how it works but actually it’s very similar to any other business world, it’s all about the people and the stresses and strains of life.” Although Kirke University appears to be like no other Rusling is confident that she would fit in amongst the quirky but loveable characters of Campus. The first series is set to come to DVD on May 16 but with some plots left unfinished is there a second one in the pipeline? “I hope so, but who knows?”


Bro

mance

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First came Joey and Chandler, then Mark and Arg and now to top it off there’s Mark and Dougie. Bromance – or brotherly romance – has become the ‘in thing’ for men who aren’t afraid to show their sensitive and loving sides for their boy mates. Brodie Robertson looks into what bromance really is…

o you ever wonder why your boyfriend or husband spends so much time with his male best friend? Does he often give you a weak excuse on why he’s not seeing you and then you discover pictures of him out at the pub? Do not fear: he is not cheating on you. He is simply in a bromance. Bromance: The new term to describe the new type of bonding currently occurring amongst young men around the world. This word, which was officially accepted into the Oxford dictionary of English, originates from “brother” and “romance”. It describes the new and intriguing kind of male friendship that Britain’s only just starting to understand. The bromance concept was created in the United States around ten years ago to describe a non-sexual relationship between two straight men. Men who are involved in an act of bromance tend act like any other couple: they text constantly, they get together

on a regular basis, and like a lot of ‘bromantic’ couples, they meet up to talk about their feelings, concerns and relationships. Ryan Galpin, a 20-year-old sports student from Southampton, describes his bromance with his friend Jamie as ‘special and different to any other kind of friendship.’ He says: “We can be silly and immature with each other, but then we can also have in-depth conversations about our emotions, which is really cool.” According to Dr Michael Kimmel, an American sociologist and professor based at the Stony Brook University in New York, bromances exist because men have figured out something about relationships: “I think the idea of a bromance is the giddy excitement men suddenly feel when they realise they are capable of having good friendships that aren’t sexual.” Over the years, bromance has crept into our society through displays of fun male friendships in shows such as Scrubs and Friends. In hit comedy show Scrubs, the main characters, Turk and J-D, are known for their extreme bromance relationship; both characters act like children, but also help one another when times are hard. Who could forget the incredible bromance with Joey and Chandler from Friends? For 10 years the two

There’s nothing wrong with a hug

shared tears, laughter and a huge friendship and kick-started the bromance trend. So what has changed since the macho man of the 80s and why are men opening up more? According to Dr Kimmel, the younger generation of men simply don’t want to end up like their fathers or grand-fathers: “Ask any male person of your generation this question and they will probably say: ‘Well, I don’t want to end up like my father and be completely uncommunicative standing around at the pub every night.” Dr Kimmel states: “Men nowadays don’t want to grow up to be like that, they want to have really great relationships with their children; they want to have a better relationship with their wives, and it turns out that one of the consequences of is that they are able to talk about more than just football when they meet up with other guys,” he continued. This blossoming close relationship between men is certainly sweet, but does this mean that wives or girlfriends will be pushed aside when a man wants to share his feelings with his mate? Dr Kimmel doesn’t think so, stating that this idea of bromance might actually be a good thing for women: “Previously women were usually the only people men actually opened up to, so a bromance could take some of the pressure off of the women,” he said. 19 year old sound engineering student,

“I think the idea of a bromance is the giddy excitement men suddenly feel when they realise they are capable of having good friendships that aren’t sexual”


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Bonding in the jungle

Perhaps the most famous bromance

Jamie Astin, is in a bromance with the previously mentioned Ryan Galpin, he believes that it’s a good thing he can share his feelings with someone other than his girlfriend: “It’s good men can share things with other people and it isn’t just centred on one person,” he said. “I have Ryan to talk to at university, but when I go back home, I have my best friend Tim who I have known since I was born,” he continued. Professor Geoffrey Greif, an American author who specializes in relationships has written a book about the interesting workings of male friendships entitled ‘Buddy system’. In the book, professor Greif explains that

Sharing a moment

male friendships are divided into 4 types: the must friend, the trust friend, the just friend and the rust friend. According to him, ‘bromance’s are a combination of must and trust friends; men seem to be comfortable sharing their feelings with their peers and often turn to them first to share their latest news or problem.’ However, this idea of bromance is apparently not just a trend. It’s likely that men who are open with each other and share their feelings will probably continue to do so for decade to come, according to professor Greif. He says: “I think men are going to keep hold of their friendships. They are going to learn

from the mistakes of my generation and hold onto friendships more closely than we did.” Ryan agrees: “I don’t think I’ll change because I’ll still need that kind of bromance. It’s really important in the sense that I know there will always be someone I can talk to about pretty much anything.” He went on to say: “I hope I still have a bromance-type relationship when I’m 40!” It’s time to stop getting annoyed when that hundredth text message arrives on your partner’s phone from his male friend. This is a movement shaping the men of our generation into more emotional, open and understanding human beings.

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Top 10 Albums of 2011

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Ed Sheeran: +

An unlikely hero in the world of pop; the ginger-haired, beat-boxing, folk-singing Ed Sheeran blasted into commercial success with his debut album. It peaked at number three in the UK charts and won the hearts of millions with his thoughtful and emotive music.

2

Chase and Status: No more idols

Drum and bass pioneers made a whirlwind of an album this year. Together they smashed a whole heap of genres including grime, trance, drum and bass, hip hop and indie rock. They’ve also scooped awards for best live act and best producer this year at the Drum and Bass awards.

3

Foster the people: TORCHES

The indie rock sensation from California played the English festival circuit this year after their single ‘Pumped up kicks’ became a viral success. They were later signed to Columbia Records and produced an incredible dance infused pop and rock record which peaked at number 24 in the UK album charts.

6

Nero: Welcome reality

Dub step duo Nero have been around for years and are established in the world of drum and bass and dub step. The album topped the UK album charts this summer an d Nero have been critically acclaimed for bringing the underground to the mainstream, and doing it in style.

4

Florence + the Machine: Ceremonials

Florence Welch is back, and no one is disappointed. Their first album lungs received huge success, and many speculated that there was no way a second album could ever be of the same calibre. Well, Ceremonials is more than on par with her debut masterpiece.

5

Bombay Bicycle Club: A different kind of fix

The beautiful Bombay Bicycle Club released their third album this year. Each album has been completely different, but equally as magnificent. Although the band is young, they’ve still managed to create a sophisticated and eclectic sound, which has been highly praised by the music press all over the world.

7

Lady Gaga: Born this way

The mighty Gaga released her hugely anticipated second album this year. Gaga is one of the most iconic women in the world of pop and has stunned the world with her ornate and highly imaginative music videos and live shows.


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Metronomy: The English Riviera

Whilst being highly respected in the indie and electro world, they were still relatively unknown to the mainstream charts. This album was shortlisted for the Mercury Music award this year and reached number 17 in the UK album charts.

10

James Blake: James Blake

This London-based dub step producer, educated at the prestigious Gold Smiths creative university no less, unleashed a beauty of an album this year. He came from no where, and was critically acclaimed for his innovative producing style.

Friendly Fires: Pala

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The indie electro sensation from leafy Saint Albans unleashed their second stunning success of an album on the world this year. Who would have thought the three 14- year-old boys recording songs in their garage would amount to such huge accolade?

Best Books of 2011 The Best of Me By Nicholas Sparks Best-seller author Nicholas Sparks has managed to tug at the heartstrings of his audience once again in his new book ‘The Best of Me’. The story follows Dawson and Amanda: two kids from the opposite ends of the social ladder with a passion that tore them apart. Years later, after life had intervened, they face each other once again after returning to their hometown for the funeral of a close friend and mentor. Hidden feelings begin to emerge as they both confront the paths their lives once followed. With descriptive characteristics, Sparks manages to deliver a high level of realism to his readers. The only notable downside is the similarity between previous multi-million-copy ‘The Notebook’. Again the story follows two people from opposing worlds fighting for their right to love one another. However, it’s the surprise twist in the tale at the end that differentiates this book to Sparks’ other stories and keeps the reader gripped. As one of the world’s best love-story creator’s and author of multi-million best-sellers ‘Dear John’ and ‘The Last Song’, it’s undeniable this book will not disappoint. Right up until the bittersweet ending, ‘The Best of Me’ will have you hooked.

Sister By Rosamund Lupton

Rosamund Lupton’s novel highlights the depicting of a woman’s determined investigation into the death of her little sister. A highly evocative and emotionally intense page-turner, ‘Sister’ leaves a powerfully resonating message about the power of unconditional love between families, and the way in which it can overcome the disturbing evil of a man and a ruthless murder. The book is essentially presented almost like a murder mystery game of Cluedo, whereby the central character Beatrice gradually unravels the clues pointing to the instigation of her sister Tess’ disappearance. Gradually, the complex plot weaves itself into a tangled web of confusion, deceit and betrayal until the thrilling climax, in which the reader uncovers a highly unpredictable twist. The elements of fear, anxiety and mystery are present throughout the book and make for a highly intense and absorbing read. However, the essentiality of the book runs far deeper. Lupton is so successful at writing beautifully and poetically about the intricate bonds and unspoken difficulties existing between sisters, that by the end I found myself deeply moved and fighting the urge to weep like a baby.

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DRIVE THRU

Want to tour Europe but don’t have the cash? Budget roadtrips are trending but scrimping around the continent is not as easy as it sounds.


absopindngjhotnrppaijneoopdjnanjojodnaawopers Europe throws up some amazing sights

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he aim was simple: To spend £700 and make it through France, Spain and Italy before driving home. It may sound unfeasible but there were two of us to split the cost of living, petrol and food. How hard could it be? Armed with my cousin Matt, a camping guide to France, a sat nav, a map and a rule of no more than three hours driving a day, we set off for the ferry from Portsmouth to St Malo. I should mention at this point that before leaving England I had already spent £1200 getting the £600, 20-year-old convertible ‘bargain’ ready. But even after £900 worth of parts and labour the gearbox was whining like a banshee and the wheel bearing sounded like a cement mixer. But still, we pushed on with the challenge. Morning came and the ferry opened its jaws and spat us out into weather colder and wetter than England. This, teamed with my first time driving on the left, gave me knots in my shoulders that still plague me today. On the drive to the campsite at La Roche Bernard we discovered more parts of the car that didn’t work. The wipers, instead of removing water from the windscreen, just

smudged it and made visibility like looking through teary eyes. The roof was leaking too, meaning we were cold and wet, as well as scared and blind. Eventually we made it to the first campsite situated on the river overlooking tall yachts and a vast modern bridge with a contrasting ancient aqueduct next to it. At this point, the stress had all been worth it. After a good night’s sleep we were on

Morning came and the ferry opened its jaws and spat us out into weather colder and wetter than England our way to the next stop, La Rochelle. But another day in the car brought another new problem: The cigarette lighter was full of 20 years of green mould and ash, meaning the sat nav wouldn’t charge. So, following vague directions from the guide, we made it to a campsite. After setting

up camp and eating we were tired and ready for bed, but two Dutch girls had other ideas and asked us if we wanted to go into town with them. Wanting to do our bit for international relations, we agreed. Morning quickly came along with a hangover and the realisation that the casino was not the best place to go on a budget road trip. The next destinations would have to be cheap. The next few days were spent getting lost through France longing to get to Spain. The minute we were over the Pyrenees the weather changed from hot to boiling. At this point I realised paying nearly £2000 for a ropey convertible was the absolute right decision. The looks we got from people in every town were of pure jealousy and lust. What they didn’t know, however, was how high the temperature gauge was. Driving up steep mountain roads in the heat was taking its toll. Luckily the downhill slopes came just in time and the ticking time bomb of unreliability faltered. After what seemed like an age of excited worry we got to Pamplona, one of the most beautiful towns I have ever been to. The centre square is modern but surrounded

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The open road

The bulls they used looked like they had been on steroids from birth, and given elephants tusks for horns by traditional Spanish buildings and shops, and the relaxing view of the outskirts and mountains in the distance, visible from the centre’s high walls is breathtaking. While we were there they were filming a mock bull run, which involves a selection of crazy people, with balls of steel, to run through the narrow cobbled streets while angry bulls chase and generally batter them. Naturally we stayed to watch. The bulls they used looked like they had been on steroids from birth, and given elephants tusks for horns. But despite this the people seemed calm and actually looked like they were enjoying it. What a country. That particular opinion was short-lived when we reached the campsite. Having just a tourist information map, indicating its position with a tee pee nowhere near a road, we ended up in the middle of nowhere. When we did find one it also appeared

that the residents were some sort of Spanish gypsies. They all knew each other, they all hated anyone not native, and they persisted on riding a moped around until it got dark. Needless to say in the morning, we were out of there in a heartbeat. With Barcelona on the mind we filled the tank and set off. Parking in the centre was 30 euros a day, but camping was taking its toll and we decided that even 60 euros a night on top of that was worth it for a hotel. With living all sorted we went down to the ferry port to book a ferry to Italy. Paying £250 for two seats on the boat we knew money was tight, but not letting it get us down we spent the next three days jumping from hotel to hotel and going out every night. Eventually the time came to leave so we went to check our bank balance for Italy. Mine was £200 for the week, and then the

week getting home. Not wanting to abandon the trip early we went to check where the ferry dock gate was. Whilst there, they told us our boat was delayed and that they had put us on a midnight ferry, 16 hours long. At this point our heads took over our hearts and we decided to get a refund and make the trek home. The next day we were heading back for Blighty through France, reflecting on the trip. Overall it had cost me alone about £700 in two weeks. Considering that includes about £300 being spent just in Barcelona, I think that is a small price to pay for two of the best weeks of my life. Despite being filled with worry every time we got in the car, it was an adventure, and given the money and the chance, we would both do it all again in a heartbeat. As for the car, a week after returning the radiator exploded; thank God they delayed our boat.


Now we know what the Pogues meant

Fairytale of New A city full of entertainment and festive spirit, but is it the perfect Christmas destination? Gemma Clapp reveals why New York really is a fairytale

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e all know that no one does Christmas quite like the Americans. With everything from the show-stopping window decorations outside Macy’s to the pop-up Christmas markets, New York screams festive spirit on a level that us Brits can merely dream of. Z-list celebrities turning on Christmas lights and the occasional German market barely compares to the scale of a New York Christmas. The small island of Manhattan is over-run with busy Wall Street bankers, wannabe Broadway stars and tourists alike, but don’t think it’s a bad thing. The cramped streets, although admittedly frustrating at times, provide an unparalleled atmosphere with the tourists’ excitement rubbing off on one another and the American cheery Christmas spirit filling the air. And with the breath-

taking views in every direction, it’s not hard to see why – New York is city of dreams: a ‘concrete jungle where dreams are made of ’, if you like. I recently broke my New York virginity and headed out to America’s most exciting city for a few days of festive fun and sightseeing. However, I wasn’t prepared for how much I would fall in love with the city. We’ve all heard how inspiring it is, but until you visit yourself you simply have no idea of incredible it really is. The tall buildings, which can look like eyesores in the photos, seemingly go on forever and disappear into the low, winter clouds. Almost every building is adorned with the most spectacular Christmas decorations; from the giant Christmas tree made entirely from sparkling lights outside Macy’s, to the

immaculately decorated trees that sit in every window, which are a far cry away from my tree at home - which admittedly looks like an explosion in a tinsel factory. The pop-up markets dotted around the city are similar to the German ones we have in the UK, but on a much larger scale. Small wooden huts sell everything from personalised Christmas tree decorations, herbal tea and quirky woolly hats, to scented candles, pretzels and hand-made jewellery, providing you with the opportunity to buy some really

With the breathtaking views in every direction, it’s not hard to see why New York is city of dreams


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w York The pop-up markets dotted around the city are similar to the German ones we have in the UK, but on a much larger scale. Small wooden huts sell everything from personalised Christmas tree decorations, herbal tea and quirky woolly hats, to scented candles, pretzels and hand-made jewellery unique Christmas gifts. It is the Christmas shoppers’ paradise, with many markets boasting an outdoor ice-skating rink filled with excitable children and tourists. The Rockefeller centre - which displays the biggest Christmas tree in New York - is home to the city’s most popular ice rink and is much more of a tourist attraction than the ones in the markets. If you prefer your skating rinks with more of a view, head to the world-famous Central Park for the perfect winter scene. If you’re lucky, the trees may be glistening with a dust of winter snow ideal for the perfect photo opportunity. The park itself is a staggering 843 acres and is a peaceful setting to relax and get away from

the hustle of the city. It even contains a zoo, a lake and numerous cafes where you can sit and watch the world go by. If the Christmas markets, skating rinks and zoos aren’t your thing, try heading to the famous Fifth Avenue, which boasts everything from Prada to H&M so you’re sure to find the perfect Christmas gift for a loved one, or even yourself. Or perhaps try New York’s iconic Times Square, which has everything from a four-storey Forever 21 (America’s version of a higher class Primark), to Disney, M&M and Hersheys’ stores. Once you’re all shopped out, head to the Empire State Building to see the city come alive at night. A staggering 86 floors high, it

Christmas in New York

holds the best views in the city and proves what a breath-taking place it truly is. With rows upon rows of lights beaming up into the night sky, New York really is the city that doesn’t sleep. If you’re not a fan of nail-biting heights, then jump aboard the Staten Island Ferry for an alternative view of the city. Although it serves its main purpose as a commuter ferry between Manhattan and the island rather than a tourist attraction, it provides incredible views of the city from the Upper New York Bay. On this free boat ride, you pass New York’s most famous statue, the Statue of Liberty, which is yet another perfect photo opportunity. Try heading out at sunrise or sunset for some truly spectacular views. Regardless of your interests, New York really does have something for everyone. So, next time you’re thinking of the perfect Christmas destination, remember the sights of America’s most popular city. There really is no better place in the world for a dose of festive spirit.

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HIT THE ROAD JACK

With miles of ice-capped peaks, breath-taking views and cascading aqua-blue rivers, a journey through Canada’s beautiful Rocky Mountains is a road trip like no other.


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here’s something about the word ‘road-trip’ which brings all kinds of images to mind. A cramped car, stop-offs in dodgy service stations and depressing country music droning over the radio. But with a stunning emerald green lake around every turn and wafts of pine-fresh air coming through the car window, a trip through the Canadian Rockies defies all of the above. Here, amongst the 1450 miles of snowy peaks and between the snaking blue streams; tranquillity sets the pace. Running from western Alberta into the northernmost part of British Columbia, the peaks run through Banff and Jasper National Park. Both parks have been conserving the mountains, forestry and lakes for up to 125 years, enabling each visitor to explore the simply stunning wilderness and encounter its many hidden treasures. Banff National Park Banff National Park was founded in 1885 and is situated on the warm natural springs that flow beneath Sulphur Mountain. The town of Banff itself boasts a beautiful main street lined with wooden-lodge styled shops

and restaurants. But between the steaks in the cosy grill bars, be sure to visit Banff Upper Hot Springs. Located just outside the town, the springs are perched at tree-top level on the edge of Sulphur Mountain. At a glance they may look like a typical outdoor public pool (probably complete with the pasty white, oversized American tourist in a speedo) but the deliciously warm waters and amazing mountainous backdrop make it a beautifully relaxing dip. Naturally though, many of the park’s best parts lie outside the town. If you want to experience the true Canadian wilderness there are hiking trails of various levels, the most popular being the Johnston Canyon trail. Situated a 30 minute drive from Banff town, the walk takes you down the very edges of the canyon and alongside the most spectacular waterfalls. Close enough to feel the chilling spray on your face and the rush of the icy waters beside you; this is an amazing way to experience the Rockies falls. Lake Louise The renowned Lake Louise lays 58km northwest of Banff and is an absolute must see along the Rockies Route. The

unnaturally aqua green waters and towering walls of sheer grey rock around it make this lake like a precious, emerald gem imbedded in mountainous surround. Paddle through the waters in a hired canoe, or enjoy them from a distance on the Lake Louise Gondola which cruises high above the spectacular scene. At the top, enjoy an ambitious hike or a leisurely stroll and take in what is claimed to be the best scenery in the Rockies. However, being such a reputable area, Lake Louise can become crowded with tourists from mid-July to mid-August. There’s nothing like dozens of RVs and countless parka-clad tourists to ruin the peace and tranquillity which brochures claim for the area, so travel off season to make the most of this emerald wonder. As stunning as those green waters are, a more breath-taking scene is found a short drive northwest of the Lake Louise area. Here, lies a lake like no other; the infamous Bow Lake. Travel books will mention it as a suggested pit stop along the road, but few will succeed in describing the sheer beauty of this mesmerising feature. The waters of this lake, The stunning Jasper Lake

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stretching out just left of the highway, are so unbelievably clear that they create most fascinating mirrored effect. It is as though someone has laid a sheet of glass beneath an already perfect landscape. Every peak, every rock face, every pine tree is reflected back in its double. Only a small red hut on the distant tree-lined shore breaks the scene, but even if is mirrored flawlessly. As you sit and absorb it, Bow Lake becomes more like an optical illusion than a simple mass of water and so it is a definite pinnacle in the Canadian Rocky experience. Columbia Icefields Parkway In a mountain range as big as the Rockies, you expect to find ice, but the Columbia Icefields take ‘ice’ to a new level. The fields span over 230 km between Lake Louise and Jasper and include the Crowfoot and Athabasca Glacier - two huge masses of

Roaring falls in the Johnston Canyon, Banff

Strolling alongside the mighty Columbia Icefields

frozen water clinging to their mountain slopes, looking like a spill of thick cream on a grey, stony carpet. At the Athabasca Icefields centre, take the chance to walk up to the edge of the glacier which spreads across the valley between to peaks. Being alongside such a vast mass of ice, the refreshing chill in the air creates the most tangible sense of peace and calm. If you have a bit more time, and a spare dollar or two, the ‘Columbia Icefield Glacier Adventure’ tours will take you right up on the frozen mass by ice-truck, and give you the chance to walk on the surface of the Athabasca Glacier itself. Jasper National Park Jasper offers equally stunning scenery, but with fewer tourists it is like a peaceful haven compared to the RV bustle of Banff. It is the largest national park in the Rockies and so within it there is only more beauty to see.

The mesmerising mirrored scene at bow lake


Sheer peaks, richy pines and icy waters - the epitome of the Rockies As you drive, emerald green rivers snake between the rocky slopes on either side of the car, while elk wander slowly and graze alongside the quieter roads. Similar to Banff, Jasper town maintains a quaint feel, with wooden lodge shops and local crafts stores, chalet style hotels and secluded hire cabins. However again, the park’s best places lie beyond the town site. Maligne Lake is a one hour drive out of Jasper but definitely worth the trip. This iconic lake is surrounded by panoramic glacier clad mountains, and is where you will find the world famous Spirit Island- a small mound of rocks topped with

a several thin, elegant pine trees. The island creates an unusual mystical feel to the scene, giving it the sense of spirituality its name promises. Visitors can take a boat trip across the glassy waters, canoe, kayak or fish from the lake’s rocky shore. But finding a place to sit, breathe in the crisp, alpine air and bask in the tangible peacefulness of the treetopped Spirit Island is the ideal way to enjoy Maligne. While there are many places in the Rockies to relax and admire, no trip to a place of such raging water systems would be complete without some form of adventure. Jasper offers some of the best white-

water rafting experiences, from easy, gentle tours to the Class 5 rapids for the more experienced. Prices and river routes will vary with the different rafting companies, most of which will be based in Jasper town centre. With the roar of rushing water and icy white foam crashing over the boat sides, it is the most exhilarating way to experience the mountain waters. Though cold and wet you don’t care, because the river beneath you, the thick forest around you and the sheer snowy peaks towering above you – the true picture of Canadian Rockies - won’t cease to amaze.

Budget Your Trip

Spend: Tunnel Mountain Resort, Banff, £54/ night Pocahontus Cabing, Jasper, £52/night Save: Samesun Backpackers Hostel, Banff, £19/night HI- Jasper Hostel, Jasper, £14/night

Walking is free: Though guided tours on ice-fields or boat cruises on lakes are great, almost all of them are overpriced for the naïve tourist. Avoid these and instead explore each attraction on foot- you’ll still see all the amazing aspects of the Canadian wilderness and you’ll save yourself an easy $50.

Here are a few tips on how to budget your trip depending on your ideal price range.

Flight prices

Flights to Calgary from London Heathrow: approx. £909/person Flights from Vancouver to London Heathrow: approx. £942/person

Accommodation

Splurge: Stoneridge Mountain Resort, Banff, £89/night The Fairmount Jasper Park Lodge, Jasper, £111/night

How to Save the Cents

Shop around: Both Banff and Jasper and other towns along the way will offer many of the same activities, from rafting and canoeing to horse riding. Each will claim to provide the best experiences for the best prices, but be sure to compare each place to get a good deal.

Picnic: Jasper and Banff host some amazing restaurants, grills and bars, but popping to a local convenience store for some picnic worthy goods is definitely a cheaper lunch. Also, most rented cabins and hostels will have cooking facilities, so eat in to cut costs.

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Burlesque 94 Looking in the Mirror 98 Britain’s Next Top Model 100 Holiday Trends 102 Natural Beauty 106 Fashion Blogger 1 1 Week Without... 1 2


Striking a pose


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THE BIG REVEAL

Award-winning photographer Tigz Rice is taking the photography world by storm. With her own studio and an impressive portfolio which boasts the likes of burlesque star Missy Fatale, the 24-yearold Londoner certainly means business. But how did she go from desiring a career in medicine to becoming a photographer for some of the biggest burlesque festivals in the world? Gemma Clapp talks to Tigz to find out

I had my heart set on becoming a neurosurgeon. Now I’m a burlesque photographer!” laughs Tigz. “Neither burlesque nor photography were part of my original career plan, but it’s funny how one day you wake up and find your calling.” Despite her childhood medical dreams, Tigz turned her back on that career path after developing a strong interest in the arts at Kingsbury Amateur Operatics Society, deciding instead to study Illustration at Westminster University. During her studies, Tigz was introduced to the world of burlesque, and hasn’t looked back since. “I had always had an interest in burlesque, but for many years I didn’t know what it was called. My university tutor at Westminster set a project entitled ‘Camp, Slag and Drag’ and that’s when I was properly introduced to the burlesque industry. I took a research trip to the Erotica Festival, where I saw Dita Von Teese - she was performing one of her signature acts, and was the major tipping point for my love of burlesque,” she says. The project was a catalyst for Tigz’s final major project – Wonderland, a self-published Alice In Wonderland meets burlesque inspired graphic novel for adults, which has since sold internationally. However, despite graduating with a First in Illustration in 2009, Tigz struggled to find a full-time job to keep paying her bills thanks largely to the peak of the recession and high unemployment figures. “I had been working part-time as a makeup artist throughout university and soon after finishing my degree the company announced it was going out of business and we were all to be made redundant. Although I managed

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“Some days I’m working in the studio with classic burlesque performers with Swarovski-encrusted corsets; other days I’m working with axe-throwing striptease artists in Edwardian theatres”

Shouting her lungs off


afspansjotnjnhopdjinjojoonaawn Bold and beautiful

to find another job pretty quickly, it was only a temporary, nine-month tutoring position. It was then I decided on a freelance career,” Tigz explains. Originally, Tigz Rice Studios was destined to be an illustration studio, but new interests in burlesque and photography after her final major project at university were taking over and suddenly she found herself being commissioned to take burlesque-inspired photos on a regular basis. The illustration work took a backseat and eventually in May 2010 Tigz began to establish a reputation as a burlesque photographer, photographing shows for friends in the industry. Everything was falling into place, and a career was born. Since then, Tigz Rice Studios has become a full-time job for Tigz, whose main bulk of income from the studio comes from the burlesque industry itself. Tigz is often commissioned by burlesque and cabaret performers to take photos for their portfolios, as well as being a photographer for corporate events and show nights. “I work closely with a number of cabaret venues on their promotional materials and show flyers, as well as quite a few of the European Burlesque Festivals, including London, Barcelona, Paris and Italy. There is also a big overlap with the vintage and vintage reproduction industry, so I often provide lookbooks for niche fashion labels too,” she says. “The most amazing part of my job is the

variety – some days I’m working in the studio with classic burlesque performers with Swarovski encrusted corsets and white feather fans; other days I’m working with axe-throwing striptease artists in Edwardian theatres. I’ve been fortunate enough to work with some of the most talented people in the industry at incredible venues all over the world. The travelling is a pretty good perk too. But giving up weekends was pretty hard at first as Friday, Saturday and Sunday are my busiest studio days.” Since Tigz’s burlesque photography career has taken off, she has received awards for her work, including numerous Silver awards at the Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers. She was also awarded a membership to the Licentiate of International Fashion and Glamour Photography earlier this year, a feat which Tigz says has helped shape her career. During her short, but action-packed time as a burlesque photographer, Tigz has seen many changes in the industry, including an ever-increasing global fan base. There have been many answers as to why this is, perhaps a natural development of the dance industry or an influence from countries like France, where burlesque has a much deeper history. But for Tigz, it is the major designers and brands who are to blame – or rather, thank. “One of the most significant reasons why burlesque has gained momentum in Britain is a direct result of some fantastic companies,

designers and individuals really pushing to change the perception of beauty. In 2004 Dove launched its ‘Campaign For Real Beauty and Self Esteem Fund’, which peaked around 2006 with the advert and YouTube viral highlighting the incredible amount of retouching and post production that went into turning a ‘real’ woman into a cover girl,” explains Tigz. This seemed to be the starting point for a lot of changes in the fashion and beauty industry and in 2010 Karl Lagerfeld dressed one of the most internationally renowned burlesque performers in the world, Dirty Martini, in plus-size couture. Shortly after, British designer Mark Fast used size 12-14 models in London Fashion Week – a move that sparked massive controversy but potentially changed the fashion industry forever. Soon a number of high-profile designers brought ‘real women’ on the catwalk and into their shoots, embracing the natural shape of today’s women and showing us that yes, curves are sexy. “The change in attitude towards ‘real’ women has empowered many to get up on stage regardless of shape, size or colour and celebrate their body within the safe confines of a female-majority audience. I recently took up burlesque lessons myself and since joining I’ve noticed a significant change in how I feel about my body. I’m not nervous at all about being undressed on stage; I’m more worried about forgetting a move!” Tigz laughs.

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Are we all image

Obsessed? Do endless images of unobtainable, flawless beauty have a real impact on a girl’s body image? Or is this simply a case of censorship gone mad?

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fter the recent news that David Cameron himself is backing plans to ‘shield’ youths from sexualised imagery, the entire advertising industry has been called into question. They’re everywhere: perfect, glossy photo shopped-to-within-an-inch-of-it’s-life images. You may scoff at them; you may think with all that money you could probably look amazing amazing as well, but it cannot be denied – the pressure for women to be ‘perfect’ is everywhere. Imagine you’re walking down the street at a ridiculously early hour, your hair is still wet from the shower and your make-up has been hastily applied. The way you look is perhaps the last thing on your mind. But wait, it’s that billboard again, bold as brass, tanned skin and seductive eyes shoved right into your tired, Monday morning face. Is it an underwear ad? Or maybe perfume? You don’t really care, but already that little voice has piped up in your head. ‘How does she manage to look like that? And why don’t I?’

The actual effect the media has on youths, if any, is an issue that has been debated since the dawn of time. Psychologist Eileen Orford says a woman’s body image is something that develops as early as the first few weeks of her life. “What’s most important in regards to body image is how a girl grows up,” says Eileen, “the relationship with her mother, and whether she is encouraged and told she is attractive, is key to any girl’s self-esteem as she moves from childhood to a young adult.” Of course, if anyone is going to give a girl a confidence boost it will be her mother, but is this enough when everything girls see around them on the TV, and in magazines, contradicts what they are being told about natural beauty? A recent BBC survey highlighted that, ‘half of girls aged eight to 12 want to look like the women they see in the media.’ If girls as young as this are already modelling themselves on what they see on television and in magazines, it’s easy to see how the media may be setting girls up on a quest for a level of perfection that just isn’t realistic.


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Baring all on stage. Kitty wasn’t afraid of showing off her body to try and win X-Factor votes

How far would you go for the perfect face?

Eileen disagrees: “The media comes second to how a girl feels about herself, which can develop as early as the first few weeks after birth. Some girls may slavishly follow what they’re told in the media but their confidence comes from what their mother may teach her about her own body and not necessarily what magazine’s they read.” So, if someone were to ask you, (in a perfect world) what celebrity you would love to look like, the chances are some of you may answer with a certain Barbadian beauty, Rihanna. She’s pretty much got it all, and is arguably one of the biggest selling female stars currently to grace our TV screens. Try as you might you could dye you hair red, or try your hand at a Barbadian accent, but most of us will never look like her. A fact Rihanna’s not keen on letting us forget when recently she caused controversy by appearing half-naked whilst filming her new music video in 61-year-old Alan Graham’s Irish field. It seemed to highlight an increasing normality in the media: half-naked women. “The state of undress was becoming inappropriate,” said Graham when speaking to The Telegraph. It seems the ‘cover it up’ attitude has definitely become the new ‘take it off.’ She’s not the only one jumping on the sexy band wagon though. Take the recent X Factor reject Kitty Brucknell. Every Saturday she bawled her lungs out, I mean er, ‘sang’ her heart out in front of millions wearing nothing more than underwear. Bearing in mind the X Factor is a family show, when speaking to the Daily Star Newspaper she vowed her career will be “sex, sex, sex from now on.” She went on to say, “You haven’t seen anything yet! I

am going to put on the raunchiest, sexiest routines ever.” Sadly, this kind of ‘the more skin the better’ attitude is rife when it comes to music videos or shows like the X Factor. Most of us have seemed to develop a ‘sexy-clothes immunity’ mantra. Audiences have literally become so used to seeing the likes of Rihanna strutting around in next to nothing that people barley bat an eyelid. After all, it is pretty much a normal day for most female artists to dance around scantily clad in the Irish countryside, isn’t it?! So what kind of effect does commercialisation like this have on body image among young girls and women as a whole? “I always think they [celebrities] don’t really look like that. They get so much help; they have personal trainers and the best makeup artist’s in the world. If we had all that then we would probably look like that as well.” Said Gemma Bicknell, 20, from Buckinghamshire. “I think a lot of the time they look over-done anyway.” She added. After all, they are technically role models to thousands of young fans and it’s practically impossible to buy a glossy magazine without seeing perfect images of the entire case of ‘The Only Way is Essex’, with orange skin and fake eyelashes galore, glamorising boob jobs as “The best thing you’ll ever do in your life, babe.” It can definitely be argued, that with people like Gok Wan boosting the confidence of thousands of fuller figured women across the country, being stick thin with perfect hair and skin is an expectation many women, including Hasmine Goffin, are sick of hearing.

“Don’t get me started, I find it so annoying,” said the 22-year-old from Southampton. “I feel like the media really pressurise younger women, and older women to certain degree, to look a particular way and be ridiculously skinny. For us normal women who work or may have kids, it’s just not realistic.” Not everyone agrees: “Images of perfect women don’t personally affect me,” said Kami Mamoila, 19, from London, “but I think it affects younger girls because a lot of famous women are really skinny or dress quite provocative – the more they get publicised, the more girls who aspire to be like them. I really don’t agree with that.” Amber Stubbings, 19, from Bristol holds a similar view: “I think to some extent we are affected because you always think ‘I wish I could look like that’, and then other times you think they’ve probably been airbrushed a hundred times over or they have a personal trainer to help them every day.” The pressure we may feel as women to always look our best can only be a fraction of the pressure that a celebrity must have to deal with. The average girl next door doesn’t get papped first thing in the morning after a big night out, and it doesn’t matter how famous they are, if they’re not looking a bit rough after a night on the vodka then they’re clearly not human. “Even though I’m never going to look like the Cheryl Cole’s or Rihanna’s of this world, I’m still pretty happy with the way I look,” added Amber. Which raises the question, if we can still like the way we look, without all the extensive extra help that celebrities have access too, then who’s worse off?

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YOU WANNA B Model behaviour

Rebecca Madgewick talks to The Hype’s Katie Smith about her journey on Britain & Ireland’s Next Top Model.

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his year’s winner of Britain & Ireland’s Next Top Model was the beautiful Jade Thompson. Interviews for magazines and television are done with the girls that make it through to the final, but what happens to the girls that don’t? Just like in any television competition, the public don’t truly know what happens to the people that don’t quite make it. Unlike other programmes such as the The X Factor or Strictly Come Dancing, the decision of who goes through in Britain & Irelands Next Top Model isn’t down to the audience, but

down to the professionals. Rebecca Madgewick entered the competition not expecting much but made it all the way through to the final twenty. Hype finds out all about this beautiful, and incredibly tall girl, and her journey to become Britain and Ireland’s Next Top Model. Rebecca went to boarding school and then went on to study History at The University of Birmingham and is in her final year. Hype: Hi Rebecca, So, What made you want to apply for Britain and Irelands Next Top Model?

Rebecca: I was scouted at the BINTM live event last year by the producers of the show and asked to attend the auditions. I have watched BNTM and ANTM for years so I thought it would be really exciting to get involved. When they called me with the details of the auditions, I decided to go for it. H: Before entering the competition had you done any modeling before? R: I had done some modeling before for Select Model Management in London but that was it. H: Ah, wow that’s an amazing opportunity then! What was the first


BE ON TOP? day like for you? R: On the first day we met at London Paddington station and were taken on coaches to a studio in London. There were around 90 of us girls at this point that had got through the first set of auditions, so when we arrived, they told us we had been split up into groups of 8-9 to do a photo-shoot. We were all given black body-con dresses to wear and had 10 shots to pose and standout out amongst the other girls. After this we all stood in a room and the judges read out a list of girls who had to go into another room. I was on this list and it turns out that after we had left Elle told the other girls they hadn’t made it. She then came through and announced that we were final 20! We then went back to a big apartment in Chelsea and discussed what we thought we would be doing over the next few days. H: That must have been so exciting finding out you was in the final

The mood is tense

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20! Was it a bitchy atmosphere from the start? R: I think it was fairly bitchy from the start to be honest. Several of the girls who didn’t get through to the final 20 were extremely angry that some of us had got through and they hadn’t; they said on camera who they thought shouldn’t have gone through. I know that some of the girls who got through bitched about some of us and thought we shouldn’t have been there. Saying that, some of the Playing around with the competition girls were lovely and we did have a lot of fun in the apartment after shooting over the 4 days. H: I guess it’s more than expected when a group of girls are put together. So, what was the highlight of your time on the show? end it was my lack of self-confidence R: Definitely getting a hug from Elle, that let me down. she is a really amazing lady. Obviously H: I think a lot of people would find it the opportunity was amazing, too! a challenging environment. Did you H: I think that would be a highlight make any friends in your short time for anyone! Why do you think you there? weren’t chosen for the final 10? R: Yeah, I’ve made some amazing R: When I was told I hadn’t got through, friends who I keep in touch with via Elle said it was because the judges Facebook. I also meet up with some thought I didn’t believe in myself that I girls who live locally to me as well. could be Britain’s Next top model. I did H: What are your modeling find the experience quite challenging; aspirations for the future? even having cameras around you R: At the moment I have put modeling constantly and asking you lots of on hold as I have no time for it. I’m questions was hard! Likewise being in a in my 3rd year of a history degree, house of girls who are all competing for which is my main priority. I’m not sure the same thing was not quite the same whether I will do any more next year or thing as living in a boarding house at not, I’ll have to decide between that and school. I thought I was prepared for my graduate jobs! this, but when I got there I didn’t deal H: Thanks for your time Rebecca and with it that well and was a lot quieter good luck for the future. Hype knows than usual. I think it showed and in the you will go far!

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What’’s trending this season?


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‘TIS THE SEASON... FOR A NEW WARDROBE It’s that time of year once again: chocolate’s eaten, turkeys are gobbled, the cold has hit and the present-buying begins. It can only mean party season!

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hether you’re simply heading out for the final night out of 2011, or dressing to impress at the infamous work Christmas ‘do, the Great British High Street and e-tailers alike have outdone themselves once again to stretch your purse strings and make

Moneta Lurex crew neck jumper (above) and Shirley Fair Isle knitted skirt (right) missguided.co.uk

sure there is an outfit for every party occasion this Christmas and New Year’s. River Island has topped the High Street stakes again for the best party dress selection. Whether you’re looking for something short and sweet for a cocktail night with the girls, or looking for something more dramatic and formal, River Island’s dresses are perfect to wear with a glitter clutch bag from Zara. Team with the highest wedge platforms you can lay your hands

on, and a long statement necklace and you’ve got yourself a match made in heaven. These 30’s flapper-inspired shorts from River Island are perfect for your social outfit paired with demure, opaque black tights and sky-high heels and a sheer shirt. If you’re after the perfect Christmas Day outfit – aside from the festive, Fairisle onesies or pyjamas that we all secretly favour – cosy up in an oversized knitted jumper and a Fairisle bodycon skirt instead. This is the perfect time to experiment with colour and textures, and the bonus? You’ll be comfortable and perfectly on-trend at the same time. There’s no better outfit to wear while you indulge in too much stuffing, copious amounts of chocolate selection boxes and a Christmas song karaoke session. If there is just one occasion all year round where you can justify wearing an all-over sequin dress, glitter heels and added accessories, it’s New Year’s Eve. No expense should be spared when you’re welcoming another year with open arms, right? To celebrate in style, pick up Motel

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Lips in Ambition - Topshop

Rocks’ Gabby dress in black, and a pair of the most OTT sequinned heels you can find - the Starry Night suede platform heels from Office ticks all of our New Year’s boxes. Finish with a deep, berry red lip and a good warble of Auld Lang Syne to complete your look. Finally, nothing marks the end of the party season like a January sales mission. Brace yourself for the Topshop crowd with Missguided’s Moneta jumper, and a pair of wine red, coloured shorts, to make the most out of this season’s hottest colours. Wrap up warm with a beautiful faux fur coat and low ankle boots. Whatever occasion you have lined up, and whatever your taste, the British High Street has definitely come up trumps with a look for everyone this season. So

Bomb hand bag - H&M

ditch the last minute panic, stop pestering your boyfriend with outfit options and be strides ahead of everybody else this Christmas. Happy New Party-Wardrobe!

“This is the

perfect time to experiment with colours and textures

Short textured faux fur coat - Topshop

Motel Gabby sequin dress in black - Motel Rocks


Unleash Your NaturalBeauty... Winter is finally here, so ditch the fake tan and save the fake eyelashes for New Year’s Eve. This season is all about the natural look. Nicole Cook explains how you can get the look just perfect.


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omething about being bronzed in December doesn’t seem quite right. It’s the time of year you can embrace being a bit pasty and let the two-hour long beauty regime take a back seat. Follow these simple tips to achieve an effortlessly natural look which will take you from day to night... Moisturising is a fundamental rule of achieving any look and should always be the first step you take. Without moisture and in wintry conditions your skin may dry out and cause cracks in your make-up. Use a small amount of a lightweight moisturiser all over your face, then leave to sink in for a few moments. A great primer is vital in every beauty regime. A lot of people aren’t aware of how beneficial a primer can be, not only will it make your skin smoother for a more effective application of foundation but it also keeps your make-up looking perfect all day. Use Benefit’s porefessional balm, (£23.50) the silky texture is lightweight but provides brilliant coverage and is miraculous for oily skin. Put a small amount of the balm on the back of your hand and using a wedge sponge pat it all over your face. You can apply slightly more to problem areas like the t-zone where make-up tends to slide off. Blend the balm in to your skin with your fingers. Let the primer absorb for a couple of minutes and then smooth over your foundation. Maybelline dream matte mousse (rrp £7.69) comes in over ten shades so it’s virtually impossible not to find a match. Silicone polymers in the mousse also prevent caking and leave skin soft and natural looking. The creamy texture glides on to skin and creates a flawless matte finish that feels weightless. It’s best to apply with a wedge sponge then blend with fingers. Peach and rosy pinks are the best shade of blush to use throughout Autumn/Winter; they create an immaculate natural look without looking overdone. Use Bare Minerals blush in ‘Giddy Pink’ and an angular blusher brush that isn’t too fluffy. Tap any excess powder off the brush and sweep gently across the apple of your cheeks (smiling in a mirror will help to identify these) in an upward motion towards your ear. Dab powder over any excess blush to prevent looking too rosy. Now, for the eyes. It’s equally as vital to use an eye primer to prevent your eye shadow from creasing little more than an hour after application. Using MAC prep & prime eye in the light shade (£12) dab a liner brush in the primer and apply on eye-lids like a shadow, from the inner of your eye outwards. Beige and brown colours best complement the natural look, MUA’s heaven and earth palette contains 12 versatile earthy colours for just £4. Apply a golden brown shade

Natural beauty shines through

Get The Look: Left: Bare Minerals Blush ‘Giddy Pink’, MUA Colour Pallette Eyeshadow (Beige) and Rimmel Scadal Eyes Mascara. Above: MUA Colour Pallette Eyeshadow (Grey), HD Brows Pallette and No7 Moisture Drench Lipstick ‘Coral Rose’.

across the entire lid, followed by natural beige delicately across the brow bone; use a soft brush to blend. Brown eyeliner pencils tend to look warmer and less harsh than black and intensifies the natural look. Try Bourjois eyeliner pencil (£4.99) in ‘Brun design,’ ensure it’s sharpened and apply slightly thicker at the outer corner of the eye. Apply Rimmel’s new scandal eyes mascara (£6.99) its thick brush has more bristles for defining and finding lashes you never knew you had. Wiggle the brush through your eyelashes, the motion will separate lashes and create a more voluminous look - apply to bottom lashes too. Finish your natural eye look with the revolutionary HD Brows palette (£19.95.)

This amazing product will give you an effortlessly sleek brow to rival a professional styling in minutes. The kit is a little pricey but is long-lasting as the high pigmentation of the colours means you only need a small amount for each application. Using the angular brush provided gently (to avoid any harsh lines) sweep across your brow, from the corner of your eye outwards. Your brows won’t smudge throughout the day and will frame your face, transforming your entire look. Finally, opt for neutral colours for the lip. Cold weather plays havoc with chapped lips so an inbuilt moisturiser is a necessity. Use No7’s moisture drench lipstick in ‘Golden rose,’ the coral pink shade will complete your classic natural look.

nicole cook/Suzie Toogood 107


“Brown eyeliner pencils tend to look warmed and less harsh than black and intensifies the natural look.�


afspansjotnjnhopdjinjojoonaawn

Nicole’s Top Tips For That Perfect Natural Glow... TOP TIP: Primers are an imperative investment, they keep your face flawless for longer and make even the cheapest of eye-shadows stay put. TOP TIP: HD Brows eye palette (£19.50) dramatizes and changes your look instantly, they also double up as eye shadows. TOP TIP: Check out Superdrug’s range of MUA products to get your mitts on lipsticks and eye-shadows for as little as £1. TOP TIP: Sensitive skin? No problem use Bare Minerals, their collections are 100% natural and don’t irritate problematic skin. TOP TIP: Dry eyeliners can irritate eyes, blast your eyeliner pencil with a hair-dryer, the heat will soften the tip making for a smoother application. TOP TIP: Smudged a little mascara under your eye? Try Simple’s eye-corrector pen, (£4.99) it tidies up even waterproof mascara without you having to start over. TOP TIP: Instantly freshen up or set your make-up with The Body Shop’s Vitamin E face mist. (£7) 109


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afspansjotnjnhopdjinjojoonaawn Blogging about fashion, perfect?

This is the standfirst for any given story. It will be in this font anf this size... End of.

FASHION BLOGGER TAKEOVER

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f you’re unfamiliar with the blogger term and feel like you’re entering alien territory then look no further. Michelle Chai takes you on a journey into the world of a Fashion Blogger. Lily Melrose of LLYMLRS.com is a 21-yearold recent graphic design graduate, social media consultant and a top UK fashion blogger shows us an insider’s view to her blogging experience. She talks to Hype about the attainable side of the infamous blogging game, and proves it isn’t “like that Perez Hilton site”, nor is it exclusively about “fashion daaah-ling!” 2011 has undoubtedly been the year of the fashion blogger. Susie Lau, or Style Bubble, is now as much of a household name as Alexa Chung, synonymous with fashion magazines all over the globe, while Tavi of The Style Rookie became a global phenomenon as a 13-year-old blogger on the F-row at Fashion Week, and has now formed her own magazine, becoming the co-editor. Nominated for a Cosmopolitan Blog Award just over two years after the start of LLYMLRS, Lily describes her experiences so far as “a dream I’ve always had and always really wanted, but never imagined would

happen.” Lily’s blog is arguably one of the most reputed in the so-called blogosphere, with guest appearances in The Times and as a River Island Style Insider. “I fell into fashion blogging by chance – as part of my Graphic Design degree at University” Says Lily “I started LLYMLRS to showcase my work and to get some feedback on my artwork. As I explored the niches of the blogs out there, I took a liking to fashion blogs, borrowed a camera and tripod,

There is a new ‘breed’ of fashion bloggers from the past two or three years who have transformed the way brands and readers

alike look at blogs.

and haven’t looked back since.” Attending fashion weeks, meeting fashion designers and working alongside the key players of the Great British High Street are undeniably things most people can only dream of. “Some of the highlights that I’ve experienced with my blog are London

Fashion Week, working backstage at Giles Deacon for New Look, taking a trip on the London Eye for an exclusive event with GlossyBox, and of course, going to the Cosmopolitan Blog Awards. I never imagined things like this would happen to me from what was originally a graphic design blog for Uni.” Hugely influential and popular with readers of all ages, LLYMLRS now has an international following of over 10,000 readers. When faced with the age-old question of the success of her blog and how she achieved such an incredible recognition and reception to the fashion media, Lily says, “I really do think the fact that people can go out and buy the same clothes that I wear plays a big part in the success. There is a new ‘breed’ of fashion bloggers from the past two or three years who have transformed the way brands and readers alike look at blogs. It has become an overwhelming phenomenon, especially for a normal person like me who leads a normal life; being in touch with brands is incredible, but feeling like a part of a community is a perk for me. It’s great to meet people and interact with others who have similar interests to me.”

michelle chai/emma curran 111


7 days without make-up…

How will I cope?

When Micaela Carroll decided to give up make-up for a week, she didn’t realise just how hard it would be…

I’m a cheat, I’ll admit it. I was afraid to commit to something that would have potential to leave me exposed and open to critique from the rest of the world. A few months ago I attempted to be brave and go a week without make-up, stripped back and bare. But I shamefully cheated. “I intentionally chose a week where I had no definitive plans to see anybody, speak to anyone or do anything apart from retreat to my house with dodgy daytime television and endless supplies of delicious buttery

I found myself unavoidably bumping into old colleagues, even older school mates and delightful ex-boyfriends (plus one of their mums)

toast. Maybe I would dash to the local shop if I really had to but I planned to hide in the comfort of my car. Perfect. “The week took an unexpected social turn and I found myself bumping into old colleagues, even older school mates and delightful ex-boyfriends (plus one of their mums!); a total and utter nightmare. The embarrassment and vulnerability I felt at being in my most natural state hit me hard. Had I really become this reliant on cosmetics to feel confident and self-assured? “That was it. The notes and observations I had made on my experiment were scrapped and it was time to start again. No cheating, no hiding and hopefully no ex-boyfriends (that’s never pleasant no matter how great you’re looking). “Monday morning and I hit the gym sans make-up: so far so good. I don’t tend to wear anything on my face to the gym usually, especially if it’s first thing in the morning.

What’s the point when I end up looking sweaty and red? Whilst pounding the treadmill I remembered my post-workout shower routine and realise that there won’t be a chance of applying make-up afterwards. Instead I’ll be heading off to work bare faced. “The rest of the week passed in somewhat of a busy blur and as the days progressed, it did indeed become a little easier. I felt guilty for admitting that it was a struggle not to have a cheeky slick of mascara or a swipe of lip-gloss when I was around those who didn’t know about my little ‘experiment’. I even carried my make-up bag around with me in my handbag for the first three days despite knowing that the zip couldn’t even be opened, it had turned into a cosmetic crutch. “However, whilst walking along the high street on Wednesday, ready for some retail therapy, I spotted a woman with a very large and very noticeable facial disfigurement. The left side of her face and neck was completely


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scarred - one side unrecognisable to the other. I felt sick at my own shallowness and vanity; so what if I was going a week without make-up? This lady had walked with her head held high and why the hell shouldn’t she? The reason life is so great is because it’s full of complex diversity. “I thought I would feel and be treated differently by people with a bare face, but everything was exactly the same. I wasn’t shunned to the stockroom at work and I didn’t feel stared at on my walks to university or trips to the supermarket. I even managed to survive Friday night drinks and a pub quiz without feeling like a Martian. “My big challenge arose on the Saturday evening - a night out in town where the dress code could rival the Oscars: glam, glam and more glam. I started my usual grooming routine, but was finished and ready within less than an hour – a whole hour and a half ahead of when we were actually leaving. I couldn’t apply any fake tan (my face wouldn’t match my body in colour) and the usual application of eyelashes, liner, lippy and blush were all completely out of the picture. I sat in the living room nursing a large glass of wine for confidence mostly and praying that I didn’t feel an absolute minger compared to my mates. I even made an extra effort with my hair and outfit, but would it be enough? “Within twenty minutes of being in the club,

I was back in a taxi and on my way home. As soon as we had entered and hit the bar, I knew instantly that I wanted to leave. The pure sea of glamour pusses left me feeling anxious and socially awkward. These people didn’t know me and didn’t care that I wasn’t wearing any

high street chemist and, over time, my fascination and experimentation with beauty products grew as I did. Working in an environment where it was pretty much in the job description for women to wear a bucket full of make-up, it became more

It’s not the fact that I wear a lot of make-up; it’s just that what I do wear makes me feel a little better about facing the world outside make-up, but I did. Sitting back in the same spot on the sofa I felt relieved and relaxed. I realised that it wasn’t the actual night out I enjoyed most, but the process of it - the getting ready with my housemates, changing clothes a hundred times and the countless consulting of accessories and shoes. I hadn’t felt a part of this process without looking like everybody else did. “It’s not the fact that I wear a lot of makeup; it’s just what I do wear that makes me feel a little better about facing the world outside. It helps us hide the insecurities that nobody else need know about. After all, these are the things that cease to exist with the help of make-up. I never used to be so reliant on cosmetics to make me feel good. After leaving school I began working part-time at a well-known

of a necessity rather than a desire for me. Why would I want to be the spotty sallowskinned teenager when I could look glossy and bronzed like the other girls? After this week, and upon reflection of my own relationship with make-up, I discovered that it had become more of a ‘have to’ rather than a ‘want to’. It didn’t feel like a choice, but more like a chore. It hasn’t left me throwing away all my products and saying goodbye to my cosmetic bag - and I will probably still be wearing it almost every day - but it has instead done something far more important: It gave me the insight that I’m not ugly without it and most people don’t care if I wear it or not. Confidence ceases to be applied to the face and perhaps we should search for other methods of self love before we put all our hopeful eggs into one (make-up) basket.”

micaela carrol/ emma curran 113


h next issue february 2012



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