Captain Grumpy & the Happy Hooker

Staring down the throat of a storm battling waves the size of houses and raging winds to match would force many to at least question the wisdom of fishing for a living, but not Ian and Annie Gilbert – perhaps that’s why their fifteen-year career as commercial fishers is as long as their marriage, almost to the day.

Jill’s life with jam on it

Time was when jam and pickle making were the preserve of every homemaker, traditional weapons in the fight to stave off famine by making the most of the fruits from times of feast. From late summer into autumn, kitchens everywhere were busy with fruit and vegetables being boiled, simmered, pickled, blanched and steeped in readiness Read More…

Julien’s temple of doom

I had the rare privilege of spending some time last week with film director Julien Temple before, during and just after hosting a Q&A with him for Purbeck Film Festival at the atmospheric Rex cinema in Wareham. He was amiably polite chatting in the bar before, animated and engaging in conversation on stage and just Read More…

Rex features anew

It is twenty years since British cinema celebrated its centenary and for all the advances of those first hundred years, the rate of change since has been no less marked. Celluloid film prints have all but disappearedw to be replaced by the Digital Cinema Package, a hard drive containing all the necessary files to show Read More…

Rena Gardiner: Portrait of an artist in Dorset

She was a one-woman publishing house, a self-contained artist, writer, researcher, designer, printer, bookbinder and distributor, running perhaps the definitive cottage industry from her thatched Tarrant Monkton home. She called it The Workshop Press and its imprint is to be found on the series of beautifully handcrafted guidebooks to historic sites and the natural landscape Read More…

Remembering Anwar Brett

Speech to Anwar’s family and friends at a film screening at Wareham Rex in his memory. Anwar passed away on 24 November 2013 and remains much missed.   Firstly, thank you all for coming and sharing in this wonderful evening organised by Anwar’s family and his friends at the Rex. I feel humbled to be Read More…

Tyneham: Slight Return

It’s a place like no other, certainly not in this part of the world. The echoes of a way of life long since past rattle around its part-renovated ruins. There is a strange, uneasy peace as if the place itself is all too aware of the contradictions brought to bear upon it. Cradled in the long Read More…