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JULY 2019 ISSUE 053

UNI PULLS THE PLUG ON SINGLE-USE PLASTIC December 2020 set as final date to combat the climate crisis By KEVIN GOVER News Editor THE University of Winchester has announced a pledge to eliminate all single-use plastic from the campus within 18 months as part of a mission to tackle the climate emergency. Vice Chancellor Joy Carter is calling on individuals and the higher education sector to stand up and take action: “We are facing a global crisis and it’s time we all did more. Eliminating unnecessary single-use plastic is just one of many initiatives here at the University to minimise our environmental impact and make a positive difference to the world.” The pledge will take effect across offices and teaching spaces, catering and sporting facilities, and halls of residence. Single-use plastic will be replaced where there is a viable alternative. The University will also work with

Stand up and take action - be inspired by the Greta Thunbergs of this world

suppliers to identify items that are not made from recycled material and are not recyclable. There will also be a new ‘zero waste’ shop, as part of the West Downs development on Romsey Road in Winchester. From early 2020, staff, students and members of the local community will be welcome to do their grocery shopping on campus. “As a University, we have a responsibility to ensure we actively engage in sustainable practices ourselves, but we are committed to ensure our impact goes far beyond this. I encourage every individual, organisation and sector to stand up and take action. “Be inspired and empowered by the Greta Thunbergs of this world; take the lead from school children who are protesting for change. We need to be positive, peaceful activists to collectively combat the challenges faced as part of the climate emergency.”

Runway Two-Zero... You’re Clear To Have Some Fun!

Top author visits Kings’ page 5

Mayflower’s magical Matilda page 12

Air ambulance benefits from Southampton Airport temporary runway closure

One thousand people volunteered their time at a ridiculous hour on a recent Sunday morning to run 5k along the runway at Southampton Airport and raise money for the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance. Flights in and out of the airport were grounded for the duration so that there was no danger to any runners. Congratulations to all involved for raising £25,000 for the charity which relies entirely on donations to keep flying.

All images: HIOWAA

Ready for the Hat Fair’s return page 16

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July 2019

LETTER FROM THE EDITOR A couple of weeks ago, we had a little ceremony in Cheriton Village Hall to mark 50 editions of the newspaper and say “thank you” to our staff for their hard work since the launch in July 2012. Yes, this month is our seventh birthday. Then, like now, we never knew what was going to be thrown at us weather-wise and whether the summer was going to start. Then, as recently, we had torrential rain leading up to the event and then beautiful weather. The sun shone gloriously as we set up at the village hall. The evening saw a fantastic atmosphere, and no-one was in a hurry to leave.

We watched a special video that’s been put together, featuring some of the people we work with. Thank you to the Theatre Royal, Kings’ School, Cheriton Players and Winchester City Football Club for their kind words.

***** Everyone at Winchester Today would like to congratulate all those who’ve managed to get the Post Office and shop at Hursley back on track. Under the previous regime, Winchester Today was available every month in the shop at the request of residents there who wanted to

have a read. We hope this will continue!

***** As you know, we are dedicated to giving space to the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance - and we were delighted to see how many volunteers wanted to get up at the crack of dawn to run 5k along the runway to raise thousands of pounds. This is why you volunteer, and this is why we are more than happy to tell everyone about it.


winchestertoday est 2012

n EDITOR-IN-CHIEF • Kevin Gover n CONTRIBUTORS • David Cradduck • Drew White • Gavin Harris • Rachel Gover • Helena Gomm • John Ellery • Chrissie Pollard • Freya Storey • Eleanor Marsden • Chris Book • Edyth Miles • Richard Horsman • Simon Newman Richard Horsman portrait by Chris Eastham

At Southampton Airport (above). See if you can spot yourself below!

n LAYOUT DESIGN • Jon Heal Winchester Today Media Partner to Winchester Film Festival and Bishop’s Waltham Festival


Charity Partner - supporting Hampshire and Isle of Wight Air Ambulance until December 2020.

winchestertoday Suite 123 80 High Street Winchester SO23 9AT This digital edition of Winchester Today has been produced entirely by the commitment of our friends through a huge ‘Thank You’ to everyone involved

Want to be in the next edition? Call our sales team on 07456 065100


Kevin Gover


July 2019 3

KING OF THE CASTLE! Winchester historian takes the reigns in Scotland’s capital city. WINCHESTER’S Royal Historian Alastair Bruce says he’s delighted to have taken part in the handover ceremony as he took over as Governor of Edinburgh Castle. Our pictures suggest it was in the middle of the night, but they’d actually just had a massive thunderstorm! Maj Gen Alastair Bruce - to give him his correct title - is a former Scots Guards officer and Falklands veteran who has also served in Northern Ireland. After leaving the Regular Army, he joined what was then the Territorial Army - now the Army Reserve - and has had a full career as a reserve officer, including service on Operation TELIC in Iraq, Commanding Officer of the Media Operations Group as a Lieutenant Colonel and as the Deputy Commander of 3rd (UK) Division, as a Brigadier. Professionally, Alastair is the Royal, Religious and National Events Commentator for Sky News, most recently having provided the commentary for their coverage of the 75th Anniversary of D-Day, as well as HM the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the funerals of The Princess of Wales and HM The Queen Mother. He also has acted as historical adviser on many film and television productions, including Downton Abbey, The King’s Speech and Young Victoria. He also provides Royal

I was brought up in Winchester, but always as a Scot

Thrill: Maj Gen Bruce (inset) observes the firing of the gun as he takes over as Governor



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Images: Nick Johns

commentary and input to ABC News in the US. He is also a member of The Royal Company of Archers (The Queen’s Bodyguard for Scotland) and is a Herald in the College of Arms. The role of the Governor is a historic one, dating back to 1067 and has been carried out by such people as the Duke of Argyll and the Earl of Leven. In modern times, a senior military officer has been appointed in the role. It is a highly ceremonial role, with the Governor taking part in many State Ceremonial events, including Royal Gun Salutes and The Ceremony of The Keys. Alastair gave Winchester Today his reaction to the ceremony: “I was born and brought up in Winchester but always as a Scot because my father instilled in me a thrill for the adventures of Robert the Bruce. Joining the Army in 1979, I served in the Scots Guards. “The honour of being the first Reservist ever to be selected as Governor of Edinburgh Castle is very profound for me and, wandering these ancient ramparts, after the tourists leave, while my flag flies over the gate where King Robert’s statue stands, is almost the realisation of a childhood dream. “My task is to protect The Queen of Scots’ principal fortress. This I shall do.”

16/04/2019 13:21



Squirt and Squidge Stick To Your Guns


Freya Storey continues to share her life as a mum-of-two I’M sure we all waver at times, questioning decisions and doubting ourselves, but recently I’ve been wavering so much I’ve been confusing myself beyond stupidity… so, I reached out to some friends - and do you know what, they were feeling exactly the same. Firstly I was quite amazed to find that there were other like minded people who appeared to be going round and round in circles chasing their tails. Secondly, I realised that we had big similarities and were all perhaps at some kind of cross roads seeking direction. We are all mums, we have little children and we are now looking to return to our careers. The problem we all seemed to be facing and the one thing that I find comes up again and again with pretty much all my mum friends is “how do we do it all?” and “why is it so hard?” I come back to a point I have raised before, about how I believe we really DON’T have it right in this country; we have an archaic view on parental responsibility with most fathers getting 2 weeks - if they’re lucky - paternity leave. All the advertising STILL shows mums and their newborns and emulates with perpetuating force the underlying message that its ‘mum and baby’ for those early childhood years.

Despite this, I have many friends who do in fact work full time. I have a couple who work while their husbands look after the children, but the latter is certainly not the norm and is still met with a degree of awe and wonder when heard for the first time. It seems we are simply not flexible enough with our approach to working parents. We are not doing enough to support parents and families, it appears we are in fact creating problems for families. As a journalist and teacher we have been back and forth over the last 5 years since we have had children trying to find

We are simply not flexible enough with our approach to working parents

the best solution to the problem. It’s been tough and until recently I had been getting increasingly frustrated with myself as I had been unable to make a decision as to whether teaching or journalism was the best path to take. Friends had been saying the same, questioning whether they take a more stable, secure career path or ramp it up to what they really want career wise and go for it whilst having a young family. Pangs of guilt had been described by all of us, feelings of selfishness for putting ourselves first. But ultimately we agreed and finally let ourselves realise, that our happiness is just as important as our children’s. One massive realisation for me has also been honing in on how important decisiveness is. I have been feeling so indecisive about my career since I have been a mum, not trusting what I really know has been there all along. I’ve questioned my judgements and been overthinking the simplicity of decisiveness. Make a decision and stick to it. Simple. It may turn out to be wrong, but at least it will have been met with courage and conviction, a life with no regrets. As the great quote says ‘the road of life is paved with flat squirrels that couldn’t make a decision.’ Don’t be a flat squirrel in life!

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MARK LOWERY VISITS KINGS’ SCHOOL By Edyth Miles THE hilarious children’s author Mark Lowery paid a return visit to Kings’ School and once again had us all rolling in the aisles. The library was the scene of much hysterical laughter as this master storyteller entertained, amused and educated us. Playing the part of a glamorous assistant in a long blonde wig was the task that fell to some of the boys, whilst others took part in a mindreading game (how does he do it?) or had to wear a basketball hoop on the head – all in the name of improving their literacy skills! Some of our year 7 pupils were given handy tips on formulating and writing stories, whilst getting up to all sorts of silliness. They then had the

Mark entertained, amused and educated us

opportunity to buy signed copies of Mark Lowery’s books, thanks to an efficiently run pop-up bookshop provided by Winchester’s own P & G Wells. His books are very popular at Kings’ and following this visit they are flying off the shelves. Reading for Pleasure is a priority at our school, and it really is a pleasure to read Mark Lowery’s books.

KINGS’ SCHOOL WIN FATFACE DESIGN COMPETITION FOR SECOND TIME FATFACE, the lifestyle clothing and accessories retailer, have run their Project Fresh Face clothing design competition, in partnership with Hampshire Cricket in the Community, for the third year running. As part of Project Fresh Face, pupils from schools across Dorset, Hampshire and West Sussex were invited to investigate the clothing market and use their research to develop a new clothing design they felt would sell well in FatFace stores. This year, the company encouraged participating teams to think creatively and consider a design that could work well across a number of clothing and accessories products. Kings’ School entered several teams into this competition in 2018. One lucky group from the school went on to win it and have recently seen their pyjama

Ex Kings’ Students in Chesil Rectory Takeover By Helen Southworth (Head of Food Technology) EASTLEIGH College second year Catering students were invited to both take over and staff the Chesil Rectory restaurant in Winchester. The Chesil Rectory has a long standing relationship with Eastleigh College and has employed several students from there over the last few years. I was invited as a guest to the dinner, having an ex Kings’ student currently in his second year at the College and another in her second year of employment at the Chesil. The students worked alongside permanent staff who had in the past had done their Catering qualifications at Eastleigh College. The standard of both the service and the food were excellent you would not have believed second year students were at the helm for the night. I congratulate both the Chesil Rectory staff and Eastleigh College for a fantastic evening!

Our first idea evolved a great deal to get to where it is now

design being sold both online and in a number of FatFace stores. On 15th May, the pupils travelled to FatFace’s Head Office in Havant to deliver their presentations showcasing their designs. They did so to a panel of Head Office staff, who represented a number of functions from across the business. Whilst nervous about the enormity of the final, especially as they were competing against older pupils from other schools, both Kings’ teams presented confidently to the panel of judges. The judges said they were enormously impressed by the professionalism and maturity shown by the girls. They also said they could see how the school’s enterprise focus had influenced their presentations. Sky-Louise Peach is one member of the winning team: “During the past few weeks we experimented with a number of new ideas, until we came up with what we thought was a great design for Project Fresh Face. As a group, we have faced challenges and have needed our team working skills to overcome them. We persisted however, and are really proud that FatFace will sell our design on a range of summer accessories next year. “Our first idea evolved a great deal to get it to where it is now. We are really happy that we won because we feel we have achieved so much; we didn’t think we would even make it to the semi-final!”

Kings’ have still Got Talent! KINGS’ Got Talent this year built on the monumental success of last year, and arguably surpassed it! The level of talent we have at this school is absolutely astounding, and it is truly humbling to see these young people demonstrate such courage, discipline and ability in front of a crowd of 250 strong! This year we saw a plethora of different acts, including circus skills, tap dancing, solo pianists, magic as well as singers. The House Captains did a fantastic job in rousing the supportive crowd before each act, ensuring that the entire afternoon was a triumph!

Excellent standards: Ex pupils – Jessica Barnes and Kenny Renshaw

All of the acts were so brilliant and professional, and it is always a difficult decision to choose between all of them. However, it was Monty Coope (7WHE, Stuart) who took home the coveted KGT crown this year, with his absolutely incredible display on the Diabolo. Well done Monty! Every single act was incredible, and we the House Team are truly honoured to put on this event, that seems to get better every single year! Join us next year for even more fantastic talent!

preview and opinion


RETRACING STEPS FOR CLASSIC MUSICAL Perins preparing for West Side Story - with help from a graduate EVERYONE here is getting really excited about Perins’ next production which will be West Side Story at The Grange. You will all know of course how important the choreography is to the film and musical, so how will the pupils at Perins fare? Well that part of the production has all been put into the hands of former pupil Olivia Paynter who graduated from Perins in 2012. Since then she went on to the Royal Academy of Dance in ballet, and now works as a teacher: “It’s quite a task, but I’m loving it. Working with the students is amazing. They’re so enthusiastic and the level of commitment is outstanding. “Because I’m a teacher, I suppose I can bring in a bit of crowd control. It’s never a trouble with them, they are so

It’s never a trouble, they are so enthusiastic

New levels: former pupil Olivia Paynter (above) will be choreographing West Side Story

enthusiastic they’re really ready to go. As long as I convey my thoughts to what I would like to see them do on stage, we do a little bit of technical training, and make sure that everyone is on the same level.” Olivia agrees that the whole cast always wants to take it a little bit further: “To put it in The Grange, to put it on a professional stage with a whole orchestra in the pit… well, they just take it to new levels each time…”




July 2019

by Richard Horsman

It’s rough, justice You know that thing about policemen looking younger? It’s even worse when it’s judges. I was in court last week. Not as the accused, you understand, having lived a largely blameless life, but as an independent witness. I was in the wrong place at the right time to see a traffic accident, and being the civic minded soul I am, I left my contact details with the victim. It all escalated rather alarmingly from there, in ways I’m still struggling to grasp, and two years later I found myself summoned to the Royal Courts of Justice. They had to establish a bump had actually occurred before the opposing barristers could get on to the other stuff they call ‘interesting’, and which keeps their teenage offspring in those little essentials like a Smart car for sixth form, and lacrosse lessons. The whole setup is designed to be a bit intimidating. The architecture is enough to strike fear into the heart of the evildoer, for a start, but the impact of the gargoyles is largely offset by the frankly Dickensian characters who populate the place. The bloke on the reception desk for instance, prodding what I swear was an original 1985 beige Amstrad with a plump forefinger to bring up details of the case on a flickering and faded green screen, half-eaten egg sandwich forgotten on the desk. I followed his instructions to the letter, scrawled on a faint photocopy of a photocopy. Had I done anything else I’d still be in there, aimlessly wandering, bereft, moaning alone and unloved through the night like a caller on LBC. “Turn left through the Arch of Destiny, avoiding the Pit of Despair to your right and the Rumpole Memorial Smoking Area. Proceed straight ahead through the last brown smoked glass doors in London, and down the especially echoey corridor, taking careful note of the “slippery when under cross examination” sign if wet. Take the second lift to the third floor by pressing number 7 on the keypad. Court 83 is situated in front of you between Courts 54 and 117” It was a traffic accident, remember. It wasn’t Crippen. I was in the far Delta quadrant of the judicial system, sharing a tower block landing with several dozen assorted litigants. Legal eagles swooped around like expensively tailored crows, whilst the parties of the first part lurking by the fire extinguisher glowered at the complainants huddled by the water cooler. There were five chairs. I counted them. Every few minutes an usher would shout some names, and a caped squadron would dive through a door with their entourage to face His Honour. Through the big wooden doors wasn’t actually a courtroom. It was a third of a courtroom. Bit like a multiplex cinema. What had once been a generous court had been partitioned off to

I’d said in my statement the blue car hit the red one. Blue .. but what was the model? I didn’t have the faintest idea smaller rooms. The Royal arms were still there, looming all the more ominously in a confined space, “Dieu et Mon Droit” of course being the Latin for “If you think this is scary, wait ‘til you see my bill”. To swear, or to affirm? Now didn’t seem like a good time to be facing the big spiritual questions in life, but affirmation felt a bit of a copout, bit like answering “I don’t really follow football” when asked what team one supports. I’d said in my statement the blue car hit the red one. Blue .. but what was the model? I didn’t have the faintest idea. Had it been an Austin Allegro and a Morris Marina in collision I could have given them chapter and verse, but every car produced this millennium looks the same, but with a different badge. They’ve given up with proper names, too. I recall the story of the serial offender who made a habit of running the lights in a car painted pink on one side and green on the other so he could enjoy hearing the witnesses contradict each other. And then it was over. I was free to go. Surprisingly stressful for someone who had no skin in the game and an over-warm suit for a summer’s day in the capital. I was impressed by the theatre of it all. Just like the American tourists who wangled their way into the Houses of Parliament at the time when Kinnock was leader of the Labour party. They watched in awe as the Speaker’s procession made its way across the lobby, Mr Speaker George Thomas in robes attended by the men in tights. But there was a matter of procedure he needed to discuss, urgently, with the Leader of the Opposition who was chatting nearby. “Neil” he called out, in that melodious Welsh lilt, only to find the American visitors blocking his way, having dropped instantly to their knees ….

Bring back Nationwide Spending time in Cornwall recently I realised how little I know of the place. Years of holidays abroad, and I never realised the potential waiting close at hand should any future raising of the national drawbridge make Brittany or the Loire too distant – or expensive - to


CROSSWORD Across: 7 Armoured, 8 Atom, 9 Amass, 10 Regatta, 12 Slider, 13 Abash, 15 Cue, 16 Death, 18 Resign, 20 Lanolin, 23 Lever, 25 Sets, 26 Academic. Down: 1 Trembled, 2 Mossad, 3 Art, 4 Edge, 5 Sahara, 6 Holt, 11 Arch, 13 Aero, 14 Hygienic, 17 Arouse, 19 Sweden, 21 Abel, 22 Iraq, 24 Rat.



A red telephone on the desk in case anything went wrong

contemplate. You can say the same for Norwich, or York, or Carlisle. It wasn’t always so. Back in the seventies England had a nightly teatime showcase of the regions with Nationwide; Frank Bough or Michael Barrett in front of a bank of wobbly monitor screens, red telephone on desk in case anything went wrong. A lightbulb glimmered under a place name, and we were immersed in a story from Warrington or King’s Lynn .. places that have never been mentioned on national telly since. Bob Wellings was on hand to provide light relief with water running uphill or skateboarding ducks, and a young Sue Lawley showed flashes of early promise as a proper journalist somehow trapped in the cardigan showroom. If we’re going to understand what’s going on that’s not either in London or five miles down the road, we need something like this again. Bring back Nationwide. But make it less beige this time.

July 2019

news 7


HERE at Winchester Today we’ve heard nothing but praise about the new exhibitions at the Cathedral. Kings and Scribes is a permanent exhibition until 2025 in the South Transept of the Cathedral. Over the next four pages we want to tell you more about what to expect, and tell you about the years of research that’s gone into making correct analysis and findings on what you’ll see. Read about the lost stylus, for example, on page 10. But first, the Winchester Bible. The 12th-century Winchester Bible is commonly considered to be one of the most important medieval manuscripts in existence and one of the nation’s greatest treasures. It is the finest and largest surviving 12th-century English bible, renowned for its sheer size, rarity and astonishing artistry. Over the last five years the four volumes have been disbound, conserved, digitised and rebound by conservators at the University of Oxford’s Bodleian Libraries, a meticulous process which has involved the use of techniques which haven’t been carried out for 800 years! Now, the four volumes have returned to Winchester Cathedral as part of Kings and Scribes: The Birth of a Nation. Canon Roly Riem is the Vice Dean at Winchester Cathedral, and is especially pleased now that the Winchester Bible

Meticulous: Restoration involved the use of 800-yearold techniques

has a proper home in the Scribe’s Tale area after having been conserved at the Bodleian: “The volumes are in a simple space, an area where people come for direct contact with the Bible. Nothing is supposed to get in the way - there’s a tiny bit of interpretation of what you see, but that’s about it. “The lighting is very important - it’s quite dark here so that we don’t cause any further damage. Light damages over time, so you have to remember how much lighting each page has been exposed to. There’s even a film over the window to stop ultra violet getting through. “I hope people will get a number of stories from here. The Scribes’ tale, the understanding about the stones and how the symbols of the Cathedral changed - and the history of Wessex and its influence in forming the life of the Nation. I think they’ll also find that Winchester is a great place to come to, with plenty of things to discover.”

It’s quite dark here so that we don’t cause any further damage

July 2019

news 9

CELEBRATING THE BIRTH OF A NATION AT WINCHESTER CATHEDRAL AFTER almost ten years of planning, Winchester Cathedral’s landmark exhibition, Kings and Scribes: The Birth of a Nation, opened on 21 May. This spectacular new exhibition highlights some of the nation’s greatest treasures and reveals Winchester’s pivotal role in shaping early English history. Winchester Cathedral is a living monument to the heritage of England and is one of the most historically significant buildings in Britain. Thanks to a grant of £11.2 million from The National Lottery Heritage Fund and donations from other generous supporters, a stunning new three-level exhibition space has been created in the Cathedral’s South Transept to enable all visitors to enjoy, discover and appreciate Winchester Cathedral’s remarkable history and heritage. Kings and Scribes: The Birth of a Nation takes visitors on a journey through over 1,000 years of history, from the birth of the English nation to the present day. One of the nation’s greatest treasures, the Winchester Bible, is displayed on the ground floor in A Scribe’s Tale, which tells the incredible story of how and why the Winchester Bible was made. This magnificent manuscript is the largest and finest of all surviving 12th-century English bibles, renowned for its sheer size, rarity and astonishing artistry. Almost certainly commissioned by Henry of Blois, the Bible is an exceptionally luxurious manuscript which impresses even by its size. Measuring nearly two foot by one foot,

Winchester played a unique role in shaping early English history

and now bound in four volumes, it took 250 calf skins to produce it. The entire Bible was copied by a single scribe whilst the exquisite illuminated initials and elaborate decorative schemes were the work of at least five, possibly six, artists. Thanks to this fabulous new exhibition, more people than ever before can now enjoy the splendour of the Winchester Bible, following a five-year project to conserve and rebind its four volumes. On the Mezzanine level, visitors can explore the realities of monastic life at Winchester Cathedral Priory with

a fascinating rolling programme of displays from the Cathedral archives. The Mezzanine also provides access to the remarkable 17th-century Morley Library and its outstanding collection of books, which have remained in their current location for over 400 years. Decoding the Stones is the first of two major exhibitions located on the South Transept Triforium and unlocks the mysteries of the Cathedral, a building which has been created, destroyed and remade over centuries of struggle and Civil War. Winchester Cathedral includes important examples of all architectural styles from the Romanesque (AngloNorman) through the developed Gothic to Renaissance, a testament to its vibrant and often turbulent history. Decoding the Stones tells the story of Winchester Cathedral itself, linking modern restoration works and contemporary craftspeople with their medieval predecessors. Visitors can encounter important characters associated with the Cathedral’s history, including the indomitable William Walker, creating a tangible connection between the past and the present. The Birth of a Nation, the second exhibition on the South Transept Triforium, takes visitors on an intriguing journey of discovery to unearth the secrets concealed within the Cathedral’s unique mortuary chests, believed to contain the remains of pre-Conquest kings and bishops. Winchester played a unique role in shaping early English history and Old Minster, the AngloSaxon Cathedral, lay at the centre of its foundation. This enticing exhibition will continue to evolve over time, deepening our knowledge of the founding kings and queens of England. Meet influential Anglo-Saxon kings in the city from which they ruled and discover the role of Winchester’s Anglo-Saxon and Norman Cathedrals in the birth of our nation as we know it today. Kings and Scribes: The Birth of a Nation has enhanced the experience of all visitors to Winchester Cathedral, enriching their understanding of this ancient building and its intrinsic connection with the history of the English nation. Entry to the exhibition is included with Cathedral admission. Visit the Cathedral website to find out more:



July 2019


Excavations have created beautiful changes in the Cathedral’s architecture - and some surprising finds FOR those of us who’ve lived in Winchester and used the Cathedral, we reckon that most of us haven’t even noticed what’s been going on as far as building work is concerned. As we’ve mentioned, the exhibitions are in an area which has been specially created. Dr John Crook is the archaeological consultant to Winchester Cathedral and knows that they’ve been dealing with a very sensitive historic building: “If you’re going to make any holes or changes you have to know what you’re disturbing… everything has to be recorded and photographed and I’m doing a major report on that. But when people come and see things like the lift, they will see it’s a work of art in itself. Previously it was a narrow steep flight of stairs, and it fits in beautifully. The middle bits are hidden behind chains to reduce the light and I would never have believed that the vista would actually be enhanced! It’s hydraulic, quick and silent! “Digging out the also provided me with quite a bit of below-ground archaeology too, and I reckon we took

out between twelve and fifteen tons of earth and discoveries over a period of two years. Right at the end I think I actually discovered how the Cathedral was actually built and levelled out. They put down a temporary floor, marked it all out and then put down their foundations way below the current floor level. A lot of people have already asked

When people come and see things like the lift, they will see it’s a work of art in itself about the ‘Scribes’ part of the exhibition, and John made an amazing discovery: “The cherry on the top came on the last day of the exhibition, the day before the current builders were about to move in. I discovered an Anglo-Saxon stylus writing instrument in a little slot way down around the foundation blocks. This must have been dropped perhaps by one of the monks who was writing on a wax tablet - and then it rattled down all the way to the bottom to be lost until I found it. Can you imagine the anglo-saxon expletives that must have been used at the time when the man lost his writing instrument?”

Dropped: The stylus (above) found around the foundation blocks

Who’s That Then?

Remains found in Cathedral give fascinating insight into historical lives PROFESSOR Kate Robson-Brown has been working on the project to analyse the contents of Winchester Cathedral’s mortuary chests – and says it’s a relief that she can now actually talk openly about it: “This is – for us – the end of nearly eight years of research, so I’m incredibly excited to be able to share this with the public. “We’re able to not only talk about the life history of the individuals from the remains we’ve found, but also something about the scientific process that we’ve done in order to present this. So, on both counts I’m happy!” Some of the remains found in the mortuary chests are now thought to be of Queen Emma, who was the daughter of Richard I – and who married two Kings

This is – for us – the end of nearly eight years of research

Professor Kate Robson-Brown and Dr Heidi DawsonHobbis (above) can finally reveal their amazing discoveries

of England (Ethelred and Cnut) – and mother of King Edward the Confessor and King Hardacnut. She is now on display: Dr Heidi Dawson-Hobbis has also focused on the people who once lived at the Cathedral: “We actually found two juveniles, young adolescents, which we weren’t expecting at all. They were both quite complete skeletons as well. We’ve commissioned a special facial reconstruction of one of these individuals, so people can actually look at the face of somebody from the past.”


July 2019 11

URGENT APPEAL TO SAVE AUSTEN LETTER Campaign to keep essential treasure in museum’s hands JANE Austen’s House Museum in Chawton here in Hampshire, is appealing for urgent public donations to save a precious section of a letter by Jane Austen. Jane wrote the letter in November 1814 during the time she lived at the cottage in Chawton (now Jane Austen’s House Museum). The Museum has until 31 July to raise a further £10,000 towards the purchase cost of this rare and important fragment and bring it home to the Museum for the public to enjoy. If the Museum is unsuccessful, the letter could be lost to private hands. The letter, dated 29 November 1814, was written by Jane during a visit to London, where she was staying at her brother Henry’s home. Addressed to Anna Austen, her much loved Hampshire niece, the letter mentions Jane’s Chawton home (now the Museum) and includes interesting glimpses into family detail and social history. A comment about family connections – ‘I like first Cousins to be first Cousins, & interested about

The museum holds an unparalleled collection of Austen objects each other. They are but one remove from Br. & Sr.’ – is reminiscent of Mansfield Park, a particularly pleasing connection since Jane was in London to discuss a second edition of Mansfield Park. The letter finishes with a trip to the theatre and a typically Austenian quip: ‘I took two Pocket handkerchiefs, but had very little occasion for either.’ Jane Austen’s House Museum is the most treasured Austen site in the world and the only house open to the public where she lived and wrote. It holds an unparalleled collection of Austen objects, including 12 letters written by her, as well as other letters written by her

© Jane Austen’s House Museum.

close family circle. Additional Austen treasures held by the Museum include Jane’s jewellery, first editions of her books and the table at which she wrote her much loved novels. Rescuing this irreplaceable letter fragment will allow the Museum to build its collection of Austen letters and advance the Museum’s vision to cherish and share Jane Austen’s home, work and legacy as an inspiration to the world. If successful, the Museum would display the letter for the rest of the year as part of the current exhibition Making the Museum, celebrating the 70th anniversary of the opening of the Museum, and also include it in future displays for the public to enjoy. The Museum has so far secured a proportion of the £35,000 negotiated purchase price, including £9000 to be

Treasured: The letter to Austen’s niece (right) is full of her inimitable turns of phrase and it is hoped to keep it in the museum permanently

We are well on our way to seeing this important item safe

© Jane Austen’s House Museum.

Jane Austen woodcut (1870)

drawn from the Collecting Cultures grant awarded to the Museum in 2015 by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Dr Mary Guyatt is Director of Jane Austen’s House Museum: “Thanks to the support of funders including the National Lottery Heritage Fund, we are well on our way to seeing this important item safe and secure in Jane Austen’s own home. We are now calling on the Museum’s loyal supporters to take us over the finish line.”



July 2019

KID STARS SHINE IN A GRIPPING SHOW Helena Gomm watches a fine spectacle

MATILDA THE MUSICAL (RSC) Mayflower Theatre, Southampton

ROALD Dahl’s Matilda is the story of an exceptionally bright, sensitive and imaginative little girl born to an uncaring and philistine family who do not appreciate her talents, least of all her interest in books. Sent to Crunchem Hall, a school run by the bullying Miss Trunchbull (a wonderfully physical performance by Elliot Harper), she finds an advocate and ally in her gentle teacher, Miss Honey, who fosters her love of learning and attempts to persuade her family to recognise her worth. There are good performances all round – Rebecca Thornhill and Sebastien Torkia are splendid as the Wormwoods, Matilda’s ghastly parents – but the evening belongs to the children. Freya Scott excels as Matilda, and she receives particularly solid support from feisty Chantelle Tonolete as Lavender and Presley Charman as Bruce Bogtrotter, whose determined demolition of an entire chocolate cake under the terrifying eye of Miss Trunchbull holds the audience enthralled. The professionalism and discipline of the children as they faultlessly perform breathtakingly complicated choreographed routines involving anything from desks to swings to gym equipment are almost unbelievable. The set is worth watching on its own: rows of desks glide silently in from the

There are good performances all round, but the evening belongs to the children

wings, to be replaced just as seamlessly by the bookshelves of a library, the gates of the school or the gaudy furniture of the Wormwoods’ living room. The magic in the story – pushed to her limits by her boorish family, Matilda’s frustration results in her development of telekinetic superpowers – is underplayed and much of it not really visible from an auditorium as large as the Mayflower’s. But this matters little, as the story is powerful and gripping enough without

The set is worth watching on its own these elements. However, as with most of Roald Dahl’s work, it’s all about the words, and it is a shame that production companies think it necessary to amplify the music to such a level that the lyrics (on the night I attended) were almost completely drowned out. It was impossible to make out more than a handful of the words of the splendidly witty songs this musical contains, which was a great shame.


July 2019

A MOVING TOUR DE FORCE Helena Gomm is entranced by Willy Russell’s two-handed classic

EDUCATING RITA Salisbury Playhouse

TWO worlds collide from the start in Willy Russell’s timeless twohander Educating Rita when gobby Liverpudlian hairdresser Susan (now calling herself Rita) arrives for her first Open University tutorial. Her tutor is Frank, jaded professor, failed poet and successful alcoholic, whose cache of whisky is concealed behind the works of literature on his bookshelves. Jessica Johnson is self-assured as the irrepressible Rita, whose determination to better herself has prompted her to defy her husband, family and working class friends to seek the education that she missed out on as work and marriage took over her life. Johnson’s confidence in the part increases as Rita herself gains more confidence in her abilities, and she gives an impressive performance. Stephen Tompkinson is superb as Frank, sometimes irascible, bitter and cynical, sometimes pathetic, but always endearing. To start with, he is sceptical of

Stephen Tompkinson is superb as Frank

Rita’s academic potential and unwilling to take her on as a student. Her response to an essay question about the difficulties of staging Peer Gynt is a single sentence: Do it on the radio; and the book she has most enjoyed up till now appears to be a dubious pot–boiler entitled Ruby Through the Jungle. Yet Frank’s weary soul cannot fail to be affected by Rita’s hunger for learning (not, apparently, matched by his other students) and her candid, if naive, reactions to the books to which he introduces her. It is clear that despite the vagaries of the syllabus (if it even exists: Frank just seems to pull books off his shelves for her at random) and the fact that a love of literature is not enough (Rita has to learn

to jump through the right academic hoops in order to pass her exams) Frank does manage to teach her something. But that, ultimately, is the problem between them. By giving her access to the social and educational worlds to which she aspires, he has removed the naive spontaneity that was, for him, her most endearing quality; she has become a clone of the other literature students he 13 encounters and despises on a daily basis for their pretentiousness. His comparison of himself to Mary Shelley is telling: he believes he has created a monster. Rita doesn’t see it like that. He has no right to keep her down for his own amusement, and she has every right to seek out and embrace the possibilities that an education can give her. The play traces the journey of the relationship between Frank and Rita over the course of a year, and all the action takes place in Frank’s college room, brilliantly evoked by Patrick Connellan’s magnificent set with its wallto-wall bookcases and period touches: a typewriter here, a battered old file cabinet there. It is a tour de force, with Tompkinson only leaving the stage once and with the passage of time marked by music, the slight dimming of the lights and Frank’s casual re-arrangement of the items in his room. The play ends with Frank being packed off for an enforced sabbatical in Australia. He didn’t “b***** the bursar”, the only crime for which he thought the university authorities would actually kick him out, but his alcoholism has reached the level where the students are complaining and something had to be done. The final moments, in which Rita reverts to her old trade and gives him a haircut to smarten him up, are tender and incredibly moving. (Educating Rita continues the tour throughout July in Inverness, Wolverhampton, Wakefield and Sheffield.)

Still just the job after fifty years Chris Book catches up with Charlie Croker’s gang for a nostalgic romp

THE ITALIAN JOB 50TH ANNIVERSARY SHOWING Selected cinemas/DVD Dir. Peter Collinson ★★★★✩ (then) ★★★✩✩ (now)

WHEN Kevin asked me do something slightly different for the July edition of Winchester Today and review a film that is celebrating its release 50 years ago this month, I jumped at the idea, especially one where Matt Monroe sings the theme tune; in my eyes, just for that, it is worth five stars on its own. The Italian Job is your classic 1960s film which hasn’t really stood the test of time (more of that later) bearing in mind it was released a month before Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin landed on the moon, but is still a good recommended watch on a rainy summer Sunday night. 60s wide boy and man-about-town, Charlie Croker (Michael Caine) is released from prison only to find out that one of his friends has been murdered by the Mafia whilst planning a gold heist in Turin on the Fiat Motor Company. Croker takes on the job, but has to break back into the prison he’s just been

released from to get permission and the finances from Mr Bridger (Noël Coward) before assembling a gang of cohorts including a young Robert Powell (Yellow) and Benny Hill who plays computer expert, Professor Simon Peach. The lads (no women in the gang) prepare for the job well including experimenting with explosives when Croker utters the now legendary line linked to the film, “You’re only supposed to blow the bloody doors off ” and the get-away drivers of the mini cars putting their vehicles through their paces. The action then turns to Turin itself where there is a scene which will make the lovers of classic vintage motor cars wince and come out in a cold sweat as the Mafia make their presence known on two E-Type Jaguars and an Aston Martin. The successful heist gets under way soon after Professor Peach breaks into the computer room running the city’s traffic light and CCTV systems, and soon brings the streets into chaos. With the gold now transferred into the back of three Minis, the cars are spectacularly pursued through the streets of Turin by the amateur-looking local police as they try and make their way to Switzerland via the rooftops and the sewers of the town as the traffic jams take hold. You can certainly see why the car chase is still said by some to be one of

The three cars driving along through a weir really is quite something else

© 2019 Paramount Pictures. All Rights Reserved. Available on DVD, Blu-Ray and to Download & Keep

the best pursuits ever shown on the silver screen; watch out for the three cars driving along through a weir which really is quite something else. With the gold safely transferred onto the gang’s coach, and with all the boys on board on their way home as they negotiate the hairpin bends of Switzerland, what could possibly go wrong? Expect a cliff-hanger of an

ending in more ways than one shall we say! The film is of its time and is somewhat sexist, to say the least, which does contain some slightly uncomfortable, but harmless viewing especially Croker’s present from his girlfriend when released from prison. Benny Hill doesn’t fail to deliver with a performance that he took on into his TV shows in the 1970s... however I’ll let you decide. On the plus side, if like me, you are a huge fan of any old film and likes to spot actors and actresses who made uncredited appearances before they became famous, there are numerous in this one. As a bit of fun, see if you can spot the girl from the Hai Karate adverts and O’Reilly the builder from Fawlty Towers. No Googling allowed and enjoy the film whilst you do so!




THE RISE AND FALL OF ZIGGY STARDUST AND THE SPIDERS FROM MARS Released: June 1972 RCA Records 16th June 1972, and for thousands of teenagers across the country, just like me, life was never going to be the same again. Ziggy Stardust was with us. The album, the concept, the whole thing… THAT performance of ‘Starman’ on Top of the Pops’ (and yes, it’s not a myth, it was real, my dad exploded). For the record-buying public, this was something to really get your hands on. Or in modern times, the poster to put up on the wall. Forget the CD, the mp3 where the artwork is lost - THIS is why vinyl exists. Brian Ward’s pictures from Heddon Street will still be admired in another 47 years from now. And another. And another. This is why there’s a plaque now outside the original K. West building. This is why they brought back an original red phone box to replace the blue phone box which had replaced the original red phone box. And then there’s the music. Ah yes, the music. I’d almost forgotten. All but one of the eleven tracks written by Bowie including Starman written especially so that the album had a single - Ziggy Stardust and Suffragette City. Sadly, three of the four responsible for the music are no longer with us (Bowie, Mick Ronson and Trevor Bolder) - only Mick Woodmansey survives. But look, all their images are there on the inside dust jacket along with the lyrics. THIS is where vinyl is gold. THIS is why you’re glad they’re still printing them, including the inside artwork. You want to pick the whole thing up and admire it as it was intended, and boy is it heavy. Look at those colours, that suit, the dress signs for the different parts of the building and wet pavement on the front… the phone box on the back. Admire it for hours. In the meantime, I’ll leave you with the words written right at the bottom of the back cover. Well, more like instructions really: ‘To be played at maximum volume.’ Wham Bam Thank You Ma’am! Kevin Gover



July 2019


SUDOKU – MEDIUM Across 7 Provided with protective covering (8) 8 Speck (4) 9 Gather (5) 10 Boat race (7) 12 Type of variable electrical control (6) 13 Embarrass (5) 15 Stimulus (3) 16 Expiry (5) 18 Yield post (6) 20 Wool fat (7) 23 Crowbar (5) 25 Hardens (4) 26 Pertaining to a school (8)

Down 1 Quivered (8) 2 Israeli intelligence agency (6) 3 Illustrative craft (3) 4 Verge (4) 5 Largest desert (6) 6 Wood (4) 11 Mischievous (4) 13 Relating to aircraft (4) 14 Sanitary (8) 17 Excite (6) 19 Scandinavian kingdom (6) 21 Second son of Adam and Eve (4) 22 Formerly Mesopotamia (4) 24 Grass (3)

WORD SEARCH BRITISH CASTLES Auchen Drum Elcho Bere Burgh Flint Floors Clare Croft Fraser Deal Gylen Delgatie Hay


WORD LADDER Hever Holt Kendal Leod Maol Mey Moy

Muncaster Oer Piel Raby Rait Red Star

Sween Tower Udny York

Change the bottom word into the top one a letter at a time, making a new word with each change. Write your changes between the rungs.





July 2019 15

What’s On in Winchester and beyond July 2019 Every Wednesday until September Guided Tours, Winchester Cathedral

You do NOT have to pay to have your event listed here! You can send printed leaflets or brochures to Winchester Today, Suite 123, 80 High Street, Winchester, SO23 9AT, send details by email to or tweet us the info @winchestertoday All event details listed are correct at time of going to press.

From July to September, a number of free specialist subject tours are available at Winchester Cathedral on Wednesdays. These tours are free to attend upon admission to the Cathedral but need to be pre-booked via the Cathedral Box Office. For full tour descriptions, please visit

The Mayflower. 2pm and 7pm

Wednesday 7 August Picnic at the Park Sea and Sand Royal Victoria Country Park. 11am to 2pm. Accompanied children £1

Thursday 8 August Open Air Cinema Royal Victoria Country Park. 7pm to 11pm. £15, Accompanied children 5-17 £10.50, Family 2 adults 2 children £45

Friday 5 July until 29 September Michelangelo’s Sistine Chapel: A Different View

Friday 16 August Saturday 17 August Peter Pan: An Awfully Big Musical Adventure

Winchester Discovery Centre and Great Hall. 10am daily - £5 (online) £6 at venue. The Flashmob choir will be entertaining again at this year’s Hat Fair

Family weekend focusing on flying insects Bursledon Windmill. 10am - 4pm

Friday 12 July Ben & Holly’s Little Kingdom

Sunday 7th July 57th National Austin 7 Rally

The Mayflower. Until Sunday, times vary.

Beaulieu National Motor Museum

Theatre Royal Winchester. 7.30pm

Sunday 21 July Sing-a-long-a The Greatest Showman

Royal Victoria Country Park. 11am to 2pm. Accompanied children £1

Tickets FREE. Three days of entertainment featuring theatre, dance and circus events. Friday & Saturday: Throughout Winchester city centre. Sunday Family Day at North Walls Recreation Ground.

Thursday 11 July Winnall Rock School


Wednesday 31 July Picnic at the Park Bubbles and Balls

Fri 5 – Sun 7 July Hat Fair 2019 - across Winchester!

Saturday 6 July (also Sunday) A Flying Visit


Saturday 13 July Don Pasquale Theatre Royal Winchester. 7.30pm

Sunday 14th July Hampshire Farmers’ Market

Monday 15 July Ministry of Science Live

High Street, Winchester

The Mayflower. 1pm and 6.30pm

Sunday 14th July Sense and Sensibility by The Pantaloons

Tuesday 16th July until Saturday 20th July West Side Story

The Pantaloons, Avington Park. 2pm and 7pm. Tickets £14.50 U16s £9. Tel: 01962 840440

Perins School, The Grange. 16 July 7pm, 17 July 7pm, 18 July 7pm, 19 July 6pm, 20 July 5.30pm.

Tuesday 16 July until Saturday 20 July Rock of Ages The Mayflower. Matinee performances Friday and Saturday

Wednesday 17 July Wessex Dance Academy Graduation Performance Theatre Royal Winchester. 7pm

The Mayflower. Friday: 7pm, Saturday 1pm and 5pm

Wednesday 28 Sat 31 August Thoroughly Modern Millie by RicNic Hampshire Theatre Royal Winchester. 7.30pm


the final word

July 2019

HAT FAIR IS BACK! THE UK’s longest running festival of Outdoor Arts celebrates 45 years this summer, with a jam-packed weekend of performances, activities and installations, running from Friday 5 – Sunday 7 July. Held in Winchester the free, threeday festival witnesses the streets, green spaces of the city centre, and North Walls Recreation Ground, taken over by street artists, singers, dancers, musicians, theatre groups and circus-inspired acts – some local, many international. The festival welcomed audiences of over 70,000 last year - and begins on Friday 5 July at 12 noon with a spectacular Carnival, exploring the theme of ‘Fabulous’. Hundreds of local school-children, wearing bright and colourful creations, will parade from the Great Hall to Abbey Gardens. Following them will be Thingumajig Theatre’s Ghost Caribou - two giant, illuminated creatures, part caribou, part spirit – which will re-emerge that evening for a night-time performance about migration. This year Hat Fair welcomes back several festival favourites too, including 2018 headliners, Motionhouse. They impressed audiences with BLOCK, which has been likened to giant human Jenga. Now they are set to perform another daring piece, co-commissioned by Hat Fair, called WILD that will see performers set atop and moving across a forest of poles. Eye Music Trust’s Colourscape also returns – a vibrant labyrinth of colourful chambers, filled with musicians and dancers. Plus, popular street performers, or ‘Hatters’, Barada Street (UK and Kyrgyzstan) and Street Comedy (UK), will entertain with acrobatics, comedy and live music. Hatters are so-called because they busk or ‘hat’ – collecting donations in a hat from those who have appreciated their show – thus giving the festival its names. Some other Hatters to check out over the weekend are dancer Bboy illwill (USA); contortionists The Maids (Australia);

Audience participation is encouraged The Strong Lady (UK); Chantier Domino (Belgium) – a workman who brings his tools to life; and Grumpy Pants (Spain), an experimental juggler of everything from suitcases to glasses of water. Audience participation is encouraged and all ages will enjoy Fantabulosa! by Tickertape Parade. Some of the UK’s leading drag performers will entertain with interactive storytelling, lip-sync, dress-up and games; while anyone who likes to dance may also like Saturday night’s big Ceilidh Jam from Folk Dance Remixed. The public can vote for their favourite Top Hat competitor, on Parchment Street on Saturday. One lucky University of Winchester student or theatre company will win the chance to return to Hat Fair 2020 as a billed act – like last year’s winner, Martin Jakeman, who is bringing to St John’s Almshouses Lawn a piece called Home Fires about local residents during the Second World War. This venue will also provide a calm space for older audiences on Saturday and feature free tea, coffee and cake, and choir singing. Passionate singers can become a

Ceilidh Jam from Folk Dance Remixed (above) will be entertaining on Saturday

The public can vote for their favourite Top Hat competitor

The whole shebang: 2019’s Hat fair features Thingumajig Theatre’s Ghost Caribou (above) Strong Lady (below right) and Ticker Tape Parade’s Fantabulosa! (below) Images: Emma Jones, Ian Hodgson, Adrienne Photography

member of Hat Fair’s Flashmob Choir too. Learning ‘Make Your Own Kind of Music’ – by Mamas and Papas, and recently covered by Paloma Faith – on Saturday morning, then that afternoon the choir will ‘pop-up’ around the city to perform. There will be plenty of local talent performing across the city centre on Saturday, including Theatre Royal Winchester’s own Young Theatre Royal – who will perform a piece about being kind. Then on Sunday, the festivities move to the North Walls Recreation Ground and acts will take to the People’s Stage and Dance Area. Some of the highlights include jazz from 17-piece Belgarum Big Band; puppetry from Winchester’s Blue Apple – which supports performers with learning disabilities; the Marwell Zoo Choir, and dance from Prince’s Mead School Dance Squad. Across the weekend young audiences will enjoy highlights such as swashbuckling from Out of Bounds Theatre and Covent Garden performer, Magic Glen. They can learn arts and crafts, or learn to juggle. Festival-goers can also explore Winchester, or join eccentric guides, Mildred, Henrietta and Harriet, for The Imagination Museum: Wolvesey Castle. But everything is not what it seems! The Hat Fair hosts are striving to make the festival weekend as accessible to audiences as possible and so has accessible viewing areas, relaxed and signed performances too. For more information, visit, or festival programmes are available from Theatre Royal Winchester and Winchester Tourist Information Centre, and other local distributors.

Profile for Winchester Today

Winchester Today - July 2019  

The online version of the July 2019 edition of Winchester Today

Winchester Today - July 2019  

The online version of the July 2019 edition of Winchester Today