Fred Karno, man of Poole

In his heyday he was one of the biggest names in showbusiness, perhaps the biggest, responsible for discovering Charlie Chaplin and Stan Laurel. His companies toured all over the world, British troops in the trenches of World War 1 sang about him and Hollywood comedy mogul Hal Roach proclaimed him a ‘genius… who originated slapstick Read More…

The Vinyl Say 023: The Rock Machine Turns You On

In every collection there are records that get played all the time, many of them for years, decades even. Then there are those that, while no less treasured, somehow fall by the wayside to lie in wait, ripe for rediscovery. This series chronicles some of those nuggets as they resurface from my own back pages. So, put Read More…

Where creativity counters cancer

From the moment the door opens there’s an unforced welcome that not only greets the newcomer but uplifts as well. The Purbeck Workshop is a small space that has seen more than its share of tears shed, but it certainly feels good to be there.  Offering a creative distraction from the exigencies of living with Read More…

Apprentices are Superior in every respect

To the untutored eye the main office at Superior looks like the future has arrived early – after a single buzz, the door pushes open to reveal a light, airy, desk-less foyer and a screen welcoming the visitor by name. In the moment it takes to grasp this a member of staff appears and the Read More…

Purbeck is quite enough

There have been Bonds in Purbeck since 1472 when Somerset farmer William Bond leased land at Lutton. His descendants acquired land at Tyneham before Nathaniel Bond bought Creech Grange in the 1680s to establish impressive seats that within thirty years were joined by East Holme, bought by his son Denis. Tyneham was requisitioned during World Read More…

Raising saddles

Imagine making shoes and clothes for someone who is unable to communicate how they fit, whether they are comfortable or how it feels to wear them. Welcome to the world of the saddler… ‘Once upon a time a time people would throw any old saddle on a horse and any old tack and expect it Read More…

Suggs: What A King Cnut – A Life in the Realm of Madness 31:10:2018

Tivoli Theatre, Wimborne “THE Spice Girls are in then…” quips Suggs in response to a little over ambitious harmonising from the ladies on the front row as he brings the show to a close with a celebratory version of Our House that’s laced with as much pathos as geniality. It’s the perfect ending to a Read More…