Monthly Archives: May 2013

My desire, is always to be here, oh City Ground..

Our awesome seats are safe for another season before further potential meddling will ensue!

Our awesome seats are safe for another season before further potential meddling will ensue!

Forest have seen sense and reversed their plans to relocate season ticket holders in the Bridgford Upper after apparently overestimating the popularity of housing home fans in the Bridgford Lower.

I suspect they probably failed to appreciate the subtle different between the following two statements, the first of which is most certainly likely to be true of many Forest fans, the second it would appear is less universally adhered to (and that’s before you consider the planned price of £549 a year to do so!)

“It would be great to have the Lower Bridgford end for home supporters to generate an atmosphere”

“I would like to sit in the Lower Bridgford end”

Without properly ascertaining not only the will of those fans they would have been uprooting, but also determining the actual demand for tickets in that area and performing the necessary calculations to work out the financial impact, this has been an exceptionally good example of the kind of impetuous and ill-prepared decision-making that Fawaz runs the risk of getting a reputation for if he’s not careful.

Certainly taking fans views on board is a great plus – and I’m sure the intention is to please – but it needs to be conducted in a more robust fashion.  To say most fans didn’t want the change would be just as inaccurate as those when it was proposed who said that most did – it needs a proper piece of research with season ticket holders.  Forest have the contact details of all concerned, it wouldn’t be that difficult to arrange.

As they continue to consult over what to do about the away supporters hopefully the lessons they’ve learned from annoying their loyal customers will be built into any future plans.  Football fans are the dream ticket in terms of a loyal customer base – they aren’t likely to switch allegance any time soon, so you have to really mess up to see them walk away as a fee-paying customer.  Forest came close this time for many.

In an era when companies are able to manage millions of customer records then Forest really have no excuse in not wrangling the few thousand records they have to get a proper view of what people want.  At the moment that doesn’t exist – so people, self included to a degree, simply upweight their own preferences and state them as a ‘for the good of the fans’ statement.  Which is a ridiculous stance to take regardless of what you think, when it’s based on a sample of a few people you know – basically, ignorance.

I’m sure it won’t be the last mistake Forest makes with a relatively new regime in charge – but they should be applauded for pausing what looked to be a ‘done deal’ and taking on board the extent of opposition to their choice and backtracking.  Hopefully they can learn from the danger in assuming what a few hundred relatively anonymous emails or Tweets represent the views of all those who actually swell the coffers of the club in the form of season ticket sales.

Plus it sounds like we will have Forest fans behind the goal in the Lower Bridgford end anyway, so from the point of view of the original campaign everyone is a winner.

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Relocation Relocation Relocation

We’ve sat just above the leftmost John Pye sign for a dozen years. Now with a days notice we are expected to pitch up elsewhere.

It’s been a good extended weekend.  Hell, an excellent one – lots of good friends, good music and good food and drink and some not too bad weather either made my first trip to Bearded Theory a raucous success.  As well as getting the opportunity to see many of my favourite bands – The Levellers, Ferocious Dog, 3 Daft Monkeys et al, there was of course the chance to randomly happen upon lots of new music.

Upon getting back home yesterday though a degree of that residual good mood glow has been extinguished by the news that Nottingham Forest have decided, ostensibly as a result of fan pressure, to relocate away supporters at the City Ground to where I sit.  Where I’ve already paid for next season’s ticket, so they want me to join the Hoi Polloi tomorrow as season tickets hit general sale to sift through the dregs on offer in the rest of the ground.

Rich and I have sat in block U1 on the front row for a dozen years or more – we’ve made great friends up there, love the view, the atmosphere and everything else about it.  There’s nowhere else in the City Ground I would want to sit instead, so the opportunity to relocate to ‘better’ (read: more expensive) seats for no additional charge is an empty offer as far as I’m concerned.  Particularly when we’ll be stuck with the higher price come renewal time this time next year!

The worst thing is those seats in the Lower Bridgford end, supposedly highly coveted by Forest fans, will be amongst the most expensive in the ground.  Why anyone would pay the £150 more to sit under the away fans hurling god knows what at you compared with the comparable (crap) view at the Trent End I’m not quite sure.  So the move is a neat distraction from sizeable price hikes, and as far as I can tell at the behest of a relatively small number of fans who emailed Fawaz about it.

Whether these are the people who will pack that end out for £549 a season remains to be seen.  Should the consultation process conclude this move is to go ahead (the council and police will need to approve it from a safety perspective) then my seat won’t be available for home fans, I’ll be seeking a refund and not going anymore.  Notwithstanding the ridiculousness of the decision, the manner in which it has been communicated (or rather, not commicated at all) to those affected is shocking.

That no actually robust survey beyond the #nffc Twitterati emailing an ‘Ask Fawaz’ session occurred is scandalous – they have our contact details, they could easily determine what number of fans would welcome a move, and what proportion would relocate to the hallowed lower tier.  This is something I suspect that was decided without consideration for supporter needs – even the superficial ‘Ask Fawaz’ ones.

Whilst I realise we are mere walking wallets as far as the powers-that-be at football clubs are concerned, it looks as though this wallet at least might well be shutting itself after many years of freely and liberally helping to fund the club.  Now I need to think of something else to be doing with my season ticket money and free weekends, perhaps there is a link to this new dilemma I wasn’t expecting to be facing and my opening paragraph?

Of course, it’s possible that the club will fail to get this move ratified – as I type there are council and police representatives at the City Ground presumably for that purpose.  Should they raise objections, coupled with a surprising number of people who are very annoyed at the move, then we might well find the club backtracking with some excuses around safety concerns or otherwise, in the meantime because there’s a bit of a furore everyone forgets that they’ve actually made the prices rather high.

I do hope that sense prevails and this plan is quashed, but I’ll be damned if I’m going to move to an inferior location than the one that I paid in advance for a few weeks ago now.

NB: I thought I’d published this before, apparently I didn’t!

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Weirdy beardies..

Dean clambers up on to a surfboard comprising of yours truly!

Dean clambers up on to a surfboard comprising of yours truly!

As the weeks drew closer to my first ever visit to Bearded Theory I was pensively looking at the long range weather forecast.  Rain. Lots of it.  It didn’t bode well, despite the frankly amazing line-up of acts and the potential for new discoveries.  The sticking point for me was not really liking camping very much.  Being less than an hour from home, I suppose heading home each day wouldn’t be impossible – as it turned out, the camping wasn’t so bad.

Luckily for me Linda and Lou insisted I go and camp with them – so I met them on Thursday in the carpark and we set up in a likely looking spot – starting with a 5m by 3m shelter (thereafter dubbed ‘the erection’) which proved invaluable as a sitting spot during down time.  After a few attempts we got the shelter looking like it should and duly pitched our tents around it including one for an arrival in the morning.

Nearby were plenty of Ferocious Dog types so there were plenty of people to chat to, and with Simon and Lynn arriving at our camp later, as well as Mike and Martine camping nearby too there was a great community vibe going on once we were fully underway.

However, back to Thursday night eventually we headed off to see the not particularly secret gigs in the Lock Inn tent.  One awesome thing about Bearded Theory is the laid back attitude to people bringing their own alcohol, not only is it fine to do this in the campsites, but in the arena too it’s absolutely fine, the only rule was a reasonable request to not bring glass onto the site.  That said, we still bought a fair few beers!

Whilst I’m bound to forget notable things I saw during the weekend, it opened stormingly with Ferocious Dog and then 3 Daft Monkeys taking to the Lock Inn stage.  A chance to get a mosh in early doors is always good, and getting to be ‘the surfboard’ during Freeborn John a personal highlight in my now not inconsiderable journey following the band around – even if the security got a little over-zealous and tried to eject Dean from the premises, order was restored – as was the song, and the surf.

Other musical highlights in no particular order (and probably missing some) were scattered around the venues – in the Something Else Tea Tent we were treated to awesome performances by the Star Botherers, Red Ruff, Brad Dear, Gentle Kitten (arf) and annoyingly missed the Beanfeast Banjos.  In Tornado Town we were treated to Whisky Stain, Bootscraper, Pussycat and the Dirty Johnsons and The Beards whilst the main stage played host to Goldblade, Reverend and the Makers, New Model Army, Asian Dub Foundation and – of course – The Levellers.

I didn’t spend much time in the Magical Sounds tent although enjoyed from afar the sounds of the Peatbog Faeries, and found that Subgiant had a strangely soporific effect from the campsite nearby as it lulled me to sleep.  Not quite so much the case for A Guy Called Gerald who was a bit more jarring when trying to find a comfy position whilst clothed in many layers inside a sleeping bag!

There was loads more too – but when you’re addled with cider, beer and/or rum then you don’t remember all of it, and looking idly at the line-up on the Bearded Theory website makes me think “Oh, how did I manage to miss that too?”  I’m not too downhearted by that though as I saw some really cracking new bands, a few that I’m not too bothered about and some consumately awesome performances from bands I’m more familiar with.

As well as drinking my own booze we also sampled a few of the ales available at the festival – they’re reasonably priced (in the beer tents – the Lock Inn was quite pricey) and tasty.  The thing that consumed most of my cash over the weekend was the awesome array of food though!  I had brought quite a lot of food with me, but found that both the quality and reasonable prices – we had toasties, pies with mash, shish-kebabs, halloumi, hotdogs, burgers and still managed to not visit ever vendor – not to mention an excellent full Welsh breakfast every morning to set us up.

Having said that, the restorative powers of ‘Betty’ the gas stove was needed to mobilise us for breakfast – Lou’s coffee making skills of a morning came with a high billing, and she certainly didn’t disappoint.  Betty did run out of gas literally come the final day, but we were rescued by one of our kind neighbours who let us pinch a bit of theirs.  There’s no way I’d have had a gas stove and kettle if camping alone!

The pervading thing about the whole weekend was the laid back and easy vibe from staff and visitors alike – with the weather not as bad as feared spirits were high and fun was had.  The participation rate for the final day fancy dress and beard-wearing speaks volumes for the crowd – as well as the considerable number of folk I already knew there, I met plenty more who seemed to have a similar mindset of having a great time without being an arse.

On the slightly less positive side there were tent thefts on the first couple of nights – many quite close to us, however the security team really excelled themselves and managed to capture and detain a group of them and hand them over to police custody and take steps to return people’s property – but that and a bit of rain on the Friday night were really the only blemishes on an otherwise splendid weekend of good friends, good music, good drink and good food.

Definitely a festival to recommend – my favourite performances of familiar bands was undoubtedly delivered courtesy of the Levellers, Ferocious Dog and 3 Daft Monkeys, whilst new discoveries like The Star Botherers (‘Bad Guy’ might well be song-of-the-weekend for me), Red Ruff, Whisky Stain, The Beards and Bootscraper will all be future welcome additions to my playlists and gig-going.  I’ve been enjoying the photos filtering through on Facebook – just Linda’s to go I think.. c’mon Linda, get a move on!

Categories: blog, ferocious dog, levellers, music | 1 Comment

Sweet dreams (aren’t made of this)..

I quite often have quite vivid dreams, then by the time I’ve finished hitting the snooze option on my alarm they’ve dissolved to fairly disparate images or moods, by the time I’m brushing my teeth I might have a vague impression of having had a dream.  By the time I’m in a car and into the commuter-trance-state I’ve probably forgotten pretty much everything about it.

So it’s odd this week that a couple of nights on the bounce I’ve had two very vivid dreams which were both not particularly nice, and both have remained in the conscious part of my brain rather than dissipating into nothingness as my daily doings gradually fill my waking thoughts, pushing away any transgression my subconscious night-ponderings that might have crossed over into my conscious brain.

The first felt like a fairly long episode as the time-bending properties of dreams can – it was fairly mundane, me, going about daily life mostly around home with loved ones and family – but I’d learned that I’d been diagnosed with cancer.  Not a specific type, and it was clearly quite early – at that juncture my outlook was quite positive to those around me – whilst feeling somewhat hopeless myself.

Frustratingly I awoke at that stage, so never found out in this mystical subconscious alternative reality whether there was a treatment programme, whether it was successful or not, or any other of the myriad of details you’d want to know if that situation were to happen for real.

So having found it unusual that a dream should stick in my head so readily, it was all the more surprising to have another the following night that similarly remained in my conscious mind quite persistently.  This time I was taken back in time to the late nineties and the turn of the millennium when I was working at Colours Sports Club & Bar in Nottingham (no longer there now, it’s now Bistro Live).

Colours was never a busy place, but it was a good vibe working there – we would stay after hours to paint and decorate and socialise together a lot, I really fondly remember my time there.  On this occasion I was behind the bar on my own when some dodgy characters came in and nonchalantly opened the till and started taking money, quite a lot of money – deliberately, casually.

When I challenged them on this there was a fair degree of threat to my wellbeing, and the dodgy times were subsequently backed up by the person who was supervising the bar at the time (neither the gangster types nor the supervisor were actual people I know, oddly).  I remained openly angry at this and subject to gangster-based hostility, but not direct threat or harm before again, I awoke never find out if I got attacked outside at the end of my shift!

At times Colours was host to many dodgy characters, but never quite to that extent!  I’m not at all sure why my subconscious would be kicking around exaggerated versions of the now fairly distant past in that way.  I think the most discomfort was certain clientelle’s insistence on ‘Happy Hour’ priced drinks (or not paying at all on a couple of occasions).  As I said above, those rare instances aside working at Colours was a fun time.

Whilst I have no real belief in dream interpretations I decided to have a quick search anyway, supposedly to dream you have cancer denotes – unsurprisingly – hopelessness, grief, self-pity and unforgiveness – or possibly an area of life that is hurtful, disturbing or bothersome in an emotional sense.   Hmph! Had I reached treatment stage it might be interpreted as a sign of positive changes in life – which figures!  Maybe I’ll have that dream later!

It was hard to think what to search for for the second dream – I plumped for threaten as whilst I was uncomfortable in the extreme in the situation I was placed, I never came to actual harm – there was only the implication of it.  To dream of being threatened is supposedly a sign of internalising a fear, and that you’re feeling inadequate or oppressed.  So that’s fun, too!

As a self-indulgence I had thought of keeping a notepad to hand to jot down details of dreams whilst they’re still intact as I awaken – but I never really got around to it.  Whether they have any deeper meaning or it’s just subsconscious detritus being kicked around your brain while your conscious mind is having down-time, well who knows?  Interesting though, regardless!

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Fergie time (is up)..

Fergie as I first encountered him – the then-beleagured gaffer of under-achieving Manchester United.

Whilst I’ve no love for Manchester United I certainly don’t have the rabid dislike many football fans of other teams seem to automatically plump for.  Odd too, my first ever Forest match was against them – it was the game when supposedly Fergie would’ve been sacked had it not been for Mark Robins popping up to score having escaped the attentions of Stuart Pearce.

Nigel Jemson had a goal disallowed that night too.  I hadn’t been truly ‘bitten’ by the football bug then but walking down the steps to the front of the Executive Stand upper tier (as t’was then) afforded me a glimpse down onto the lower tier which was home to the leering Mancunians gesticulating up to us.  I remember finding it distasteful more than offensive.

Fast forward a couple of years and I was in Wembley Stadium, for the second time that season, watching Forest play United again this time in a cup final (the Rumbelows Cup, no less).  Because of ticket dodginess there were a lot of Mancs in our end, one of whom thought it okay to gob in the face of a fourteen year old me.

On reflection my Dad did well to keep it together and marshall his two lads around that day with no incident because the concourses were scenes of running battles that he seems to have spared me any memory of – as I only really know of such things from retrospective reminsces from fellow fans who probably quite enjoyed partaking in such things.

This reminiscing really has perhaps only suggested that really I should dislike Manchester United for personal reasons if I’m not going to blindly do so to follow the crowd.  Maybe being so detached from the spheres in which Manchester United operate for many years has numbed me to indifference – maybe I can hold on to that rather splendid afternoon spent at Old Trafford where Pearce and Collymore netted to see us win 2-1?

Whatever the reasoning – and despite the lack of strong feeling – Alex Ferguson has been at the helm of the club since I really knew anything about football – so it’s quite monumental even to someone who is at best marginally interested in them when he steps down after over 26 years of service and a trail of silverware – and surely somewhat inevitable too, he ain’t getting any younger afterall.

There’s much to dislike about his legacy – of primadonnas crowding referees, of haranging officials when decisions go against them – but whilst that grates with my moral compass I’d point the finger at the powers that be in football who allow such shenanigans to detract from what should still be the beautiful game.  Let’s face it, Ferguson might be a pioneer in such schtick but he’s not the only protagonist.

The biggest grudge I can muster against Ferguson is the folk-wisdom that suggests he had a hand in this abhorration of a circumstance happening.

He should rightly be considered in the pantheon of football management greats for his achievements, and will leave difficult shoes to fill for David Moyes – particularly as he will remain in the corridors of power at Old Trafford.  For the club to continue to meet its’ high expectations Moyes needs to oversee an evolution of the systems Ferguson has ruled for over two decades rather than the revolution a Mourinho type figure might have inspired.

On reflection, he was apparently instrumental in the appointment of Alex McLeish at Forest – so to conclude, good-riddance you purple-nosed bastard! (I jest).

To end sensibly, I do think if I were present as an opposing fan I’d be respectful toward him.  It evokes memories of when our own great manager Brian Clough stepped down at Forest (in a much less auspicious position admittedly), but the respect he was shown by Sheffield United and Ipswich Town fans in our final games that season was a lovely tribute to the impact he had on the whole game – not just at Forest, Derby, (Brighton, Leeds) and Hartlepools as a manager.


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Cage fighting..

Lloyd taking in her new surroundings - next to the panel where there should be a door

Lloyd taking in her new surroundings – next to the panel where there should be a door!

A while ago we moved our feathered trio into a swanky new cage.  Unfortunately the cage in question was packed slightly incorrectly.  I could still build it, and we’ve got our beakies living in there happily, but it means that there isn’t a large door where there should be.

I emailed the company I bought the cage from – The Online Pet Store – who immediately offered to arrange a replacement.  That was slightly complicated by the fact I already constructed and started using the cage, so I pointed this out and that I would rather simply have the missing parts sent to me.

Since The Online Pet Store basically buy boxed cages from a supplier to resell, they quite reasonably passed this on to their supplier.  So I entered into conversation with Sky Pet Products – who initially denied that anything was wrong – and again, ultimately, just received boxed products which they distributed to retailers – so referred me to the manufacturer in Germany.

So, enter stage-right  It makes sense to talk to them really – the cage was made there, put in a box there, that’s where the error occurred.  It started quite well – they sent me some instructions that were much clearer than those in the box, although it merely confirmed that the parts in the box weren’t quite right.  After a little bit of to-ing and fro-ing the manufacturers agreed with me.

Then they referred me back to the vendor. Argh!

Lee at Sky Pet Products offered to refund me at his own expense, although that would leave me without a cage at all – all I want is one part that is currently missing.  I declined his offer and recontacted the manufacturer to ask them how I could make this happen – I even offered to pay the part for the replacement part and shipping, and since then (a little over two weeks ago) all I’ve had is no response.

I’ve been preoccupied with other things but am determined not to let this slip, so have left a comment on the manufacturer’s Facebook page to try to illicit a response and will be sending a few more emails once I’ve dug out some addresses.  It’s really frustrating when something that should be simple to resolve is made so difficult, and to not receive a reply at all is appalling customer service.

Anyway, what an interesting blog post – eh?  Sometimes it’s good to rant, and well, you never know – somebody might have the same issue and stumble upon some useful information via a Google search in the future!

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Where did you come from?

Given the infrequency in updating this site, it being largely self-absorbed uninteresting twaddle or occasional geek-based revelry, it always intrigues me as to how people stumble upon this little corner of the web.  Which is why referrer stats are always quite useful, with the ubquity of Google driving traffic sitewards, it’s fun to look at the key words people searched for to end up here.

Of course, in posting about the words that drew people here that might only strengthen the resolve of those particular terms to bring people here.

In the last year the most popular search terms are:

  1. Protect Your Bubble (or assorted derivations thereof), driven pretty much by this post from June 2011 chronicling the painful experience of getting the insurance company to deal with my claim relating to a broken iPhone 4.  It’s by far my most commented on piece, as people plead for the contact details for Helen – a customer service person who must regret daily the day she decided to proactively comment on my blog post!
  2. iPhone 4 Sticky Button – still on the Apple theme!  Having had a non-responsive home button on my iPhone 4 I decided to dismantle it and fix it, it kinda worked for a while too!
  3. Goddammit – well, you’d kinda expect that to appear somewhere, wouldn’t you?
  4. When I needed a neighbour – the old school assembly hymn (people also search for parts of the song – particularly the line about being cold and naked!).  This drove ridiculous amounts of traffic to my site when a character from Coronation Street was singing it in the cafe a few years ago…
  5. iTunes Artwork – iTunes Match caused all sorts of issue with Artwork.  When my OCD kicks in on my music library it’s a nightmare, so it was great to find some AppleScripts to help me sort out those missing bits and pieces!  It seems from the reasonably frequent visitors to this post that hopefully it’s helped a few others sort out similar issues!
  6. Gedling Colliery – also specific variants like Gedling Pit, Pit Tips or the Mapperley Railway Tunnel, visitors search for these terms are treated to my ramblings around this old colliery site including a trip down the Mapperley Tunnel, or wandering amongst the Lapwings on top of the old slag heap.
  7. English Boodle – my aunty’s acquisition of the awesome labradoodle we know as Digby had me pondering other potential hybrid dog breed names.  Apparently this one is the one that most other people would search for!
  8. Poor Farmer Cartoon – I’m really not sure, but the only thing I could find related to it is this reminsce about a childhood song relating to a farmer and his journey through life.  Weird!
  9. Static on the Airwaves review – people looking for feedback on the most recent Levellers studio album, so hopefully I was able to tempt a few folk into buying it, as it’s bloody brilliant.
  10. Specky Four Eyes – taken from a piece about being a football fan, my favourite goad received from supporters visiting the City Ground is the ‘glasses face’ gesture which is directed at me with hilariously regular frequency!

In some cases I can see where search engine referrals will have really helped people find the information or advice they were looking for, on other occasions they must wonder how the hell they ended up being brought to these pages.

Having said that, right at the beginning I pointed out that there isn’t really a purpose to anything in these pages – it’s a dumping ground for thoughts, reminisces and hints or tips I might have accumulated.  So I suppose I shouldn’t really worry whether or not those reaching these pages have their need sated or otherwise!

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Wiggle your big toe…


I don’t often cast myself as Uma Thurman, but a couple of weeks ago as I sat on our settee compelling my foot to move upwards in the aftermath of having drop-foot and it twitched a bit, it evoked that scene in Kill Bill where ‘The Bride’, lying in the back of a pick-up truck, strains to shake her limbs from entropy.

As her toes begin to twitch on the screen, she smiles and states that the hard part’s over – now let’s get those other little piggies wiggling.

Since that moment I’ve probably regained about a third of the movement I’d lost – it’s most apparent when I’m not working against gravity, so being a reclined kind of person means I have plenty of opportunity to sit flexing my foot up and down as far as I can whilst watching TV or otherwise relaxing.  If I’m standing or sitting with my feet on the floor it’s more of a twitch than an actual movement.

Still, it’s positive to see actual signs of recovery – it’s been getting on for four months since it initially happened – obviously in the interim period I’ve also had the medical diversion of ‘Susan’ to distract me from this longer term problem.  So there’s light at the end of the tunnel, I’m just not quite sure how far it is to walk to get there – but I’m certainly looking forward to the prospect of getting back on the football pitch again.

I probably won’t do so sporting a yellow jumpsuit whilst toting a Hattori Hanzo katana though – although I do have a katana at home!

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Boys from the Dwarf..

As a boyhood Red Dwarf obsessive (a fairly short look through the family photo albums will find my mid-teens saw me basically living in either Red Dwarf t-shirts or Forest shirts) I never quite got to the SciFi convention level of fandom.  But it was great to spend time at a relatively intimate ‘Evening With..’ the core members of the cast since the show’s inception (or since the third series at least, in the case of Robert Llewellyn).

With Danny John Jules arriving late (apparently not an uncommon occurrence!), it was left for Craig Charles, Chris Barrie and Robert Llewellyn to lead the entertainment in a fairly informal Q&A led by Al Booth.  Most striking was their ease in the company of each other (for the time before Danny arrived, Craig and Chris were sharing a bar stool – although I’m not sure if they realised!!), and the natural banter they almost couldn’t help engaging in.

I guess being a soap actor now it shouldn’t be surprising, but Craig Charles has an amazing capacity for remembering lines from random episodes – be they his own or his fellow cast members – rivaling even the most avid Dwarf aficionado in the crowd where the other panelists might’ve been floundering a bit trying to remember disparate scenes or pieces of dialogue.

The predictably huge demand for photos and autographs at the end by the assembled gaggle of nerds and geeks (of which I include myself, of course) meant that I shelved the fourteen year old me, and headed home rather than queue for ages, desire for entertainment sated by four of my favourite TV personalities basically sitting together and having a laugh like the bunch of old mates that they clearly are, but including the room in their recollections and in-jokes.

Kudos to Lee for seeing up the evening, with it going so well there’s every chance this could be something that happens again in the future – if it does, then I would heartily recommend it.

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