Caitlyn Charley, 11; Callie Adams, 9; Kailia Adams, 10; Ben Issac, 10 and Tracie Hudson from North Devon Homes, who presented the awards:
On Friday, I went to see Yes, Prime Minister at the Landmark, something I had been looking forward to for some time. At first, I have to say, it seemed wrong. Sir Humphrey did not look a bit like I remembered, Jim Hacker had the wrong face, wrong hair and was too tall, and so on. Sensibly, the actors did not try to imitate their more illustrious predecessors, and I soon forgot Sir Nigel Hawthorne etc and accepted the people on stage for what they were portraying. We were warned at the beginning that the play contained some matter that some might find shocking, and, since it revolved around a paedophilic ambassador, it would be difficult to dispute this. However, I thought the play was, at heart, seriously moral, posing a serious moral dilemma in an amusing way, although it has to be said that the denouement was something of a cop-out.
The actors filled their roles extremely well, notably Sir Humphrey, who had a couple of lengthy and complicated speeches in Civil Service-speak, which he delivered with aplomb (and to applause). Hacker veered between panicked, frantic and Machiavellian in a way that I am sure Paul Eddington would have approved of, although very different from Mr Eddington’s portrayal. The only sour note for me, and perhaps I am being over-critical, was that Bernard was wearing a suit that seemed to be two sizes too small! For some reason, I noticed it throughout the play and it grated. That said, however, I and the rest of the audience had a fine time and I was sorry when the play finished.
On Saturday, I had the pleasure of attending the Lions’ dinner at the Landmark pavilion. Thank you to the Lions, and particularly Michael Seckington, for inviting me. I had a fine time, the culmination of which was when I was presented with a cheque for £2000 to go towards the new Christmas lights that we hope to have in time for Christmas next year. Many thanks, Lions. You will probably remember that the Lions took charge of this year’s very successful carnival. What you may not know is that they donated over £13,000 to local good causes this year. If you would like more information about them, contact firstname.lastname@example.org. A fine looking bunch, aren’t they?
There’s been a little excitement across the pond. I'm not going to comment on the outcome of the presidential election – enough people have already done that. But did you notice, after the results were announced, the reaction of Bernie Sanders’ supporters? Obviously, they were disappointed, but, instead of accepting the result, they attacked their fellow Democrats for choosing Clinton rather than Sanders. They didn’t recognise that the Clinton supporters might have had a good reason not to vote for a carpetbagger who, until he saw a chance of the presidency, had not even been a Democrat! They didn’t attack those Sanders’ supporters who voted for a third-party candidate or even for Trump. They didn’t attack those Sanders’ supporters who were so virtuous that they couldn’t bring themselves to vote for Clinton and so stayed away. No, it has to be someone else’s fault. There’s nowt so queer as folk.
RIP Leonard Cohen, Canadian poet, songwriter and singer. One of my daughters owes her name to a song of his. Farewell also to Leon Russell.
This year has given the hereafter quite a bunch of musical and other artistic talent. Whilst they will be missed, it is worth remembering how lucky we are that we live in a time when their works are still available to us though they themselves may be long gone.