What’s on in York: Haven’t they grown with Sophie Hannah

Tang Hall Explore at The Centre @ Burnholme

Friday 31st January 2020

7:00 pm – 8:00 pm 

£6

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oin Sophie Hannah as she discusses her latest psychological suspense thriller, Haven’t They Grown.

Explore York in partnership with Fox Lane Books and York Literature Festival presents Sophie Hannah, described in The Times as ‘one of the great unmissables of the genre –intelligent, classy, and with a wonderfully gothic imagination’ at Tang Hall Explore at The Centre@Burnholme on 31st January 2020

Haven’t They Grown

All Beth has to do is drive her son to his Under-14s away match, watch him play, and bring him home.

Just because she knows that her former best friend lives near the football ground, that doesn’t mean she has to drive past her house and try catch a glimpse of her. Why would Beth do that, and risk dredging up painful memories? She hasn’t seen Flora Braid for twelve years.

But she can’t resist. She parks outside Flora’s house and watches from across the road as Flora and her children, Thomas and Emily step out of the car. Except…

There’s something terribly wrong.

Flora looks the same, only older – just as Beth would have expected. It’s the children that are the problem. Twelve years ago, Thomas and Emily Braid were five and three years old. Today, they look precisely as they did then. They are still five and three. They are Thomas and Emily without a doubt – Beth hears Flora call them by their names – but they haven’t changed at all. They are no taller, no older.

Why haven’t they grown?

What’s on in York: Adventures in the Cherry Orchard – Anton Chekhov and me

Wednesday January 29th 
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
£5
Why is Anton Chekhov so beloved and called “the father of the modern theatre”? Helen Wilson of York Settlement Community Players will explain why through anecdotes and a little biography; casting a light on why he called his plays comedies.

Come and toast Chekhov’s 160th birthday with a glass of vodka or wine. Be entertained by extracts of his work from the cast of The Seagull (27th February – 7th March at York Theatre Royal). As she directs the fourth of his major plays Helen shares her enthusiasm for a great Russian dramatist.

To book tickets for The Seagull production at York Theatre Royal visit: https://www.yorktheatreroyal.co.uk/show/the-seagull/

To book tickets for this event, Helen’s talk on Anton Chekhov, please press the booking button.

What’s on in York: Finding the words – Stanza Showcase

York Explore

23rd January 2020

@ 6:30 pm – 7:45 pm 

Free

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Members of York Stanza

Twelve poets from York’s renowned Stanza Group to entertain and enthral you.

Carole Bromley is the York Stanza rep. Latest publication, Sodium 136 (Calder Valley).Janet Dean is a novelist, playwright and poet living in York.Joseph Chaplain is an unpublished poet currently living in the Peak District.Mary Ann Dearlove is always travelling and likes to write about her experiences in far off places.Melody Clarke is a fresh, new, contemporary, untrodden, recent, modish York Stanza member who owns a thesaurus.Miles Salter sings, writes and likes cheese.Nairn Kennedy lives in Leeds.Nick Boreham has been longlisted for the National Poetry Prize and his poems have appeared in a range of magazines.Patrick Lodge is an Irish-Welsh poet living in Yorkshire whose latest collection is “Remarkable Occurrences” ( Valley Press, 2019).Phil Connolly has been enjoying himself at the Stanza for several years now and is looking forward to hearing everyone’s poems and reading a couple himself.Richard Carpenter writes poems and plants trees.Rob Miles is a Leeds-based multi-award winning poet, widely published in magazines and anthologies.Finding the Words is our monthly poetry evening featuring poets from Yorkshire and beyond. Discover new poetry in a welcoming and relaxed atmosphere. Bar available. Booking advised.

York Explore Phone:01904 552828 Email:york@exploreyork.org.uk

Local rugby team gets home fixture in Cup

YORK Acorn have been drawn at home to Barrow Island in round two of the Coral Challenge Cup.

The tie will be played at the Thanet Road ground.

Acorn beat Hammersmith Hills Hoists in the first round.

National Conference League premier division side Acorn will take on a Barrow outfit who finished fifth in division two last year on the weekend of January 25-26.

What’s on in York: Launch of Carole Bromley’s pamphlet, ‘Sodium 136’

Thursday January 16th 
6:15 pm – 7:45 pm 
Free
Three great readers for the price of one. Better still, it’s free! Join us for the launch of Carole Bromley’s new Calder Valley Press pamphlet, Sodium 136.  Carole will be joined by Emma Storr and Stuart Pickford.

Carole Bromley is well known on the York poetry scene. She has three full length collections with Smith/Doorstop and her new pamphlet, from Calder Valley Press, concerns her recent experience of brain surgery.

‘This is not just a record of physical suffering – it is a powerful and profoundly intelligent exploration of grief, gratitude, fear, love, and joy. Poetry at its best’ (Clare Shaw)

 ‘These are remarkable, extraordinary poems’ (Peter Sansom)

Stuart Pickford is a keen runner and will be reading about his hobby. His latest book is Swimming with Jellyfish from smith/doorstop.

Emma Storr’s background is medical. She lives in Leeds and is a member of the Leeds Writers Circle and the Wharfedale Poets. Her work has appeared in the Hippocrates Anthologies 2016 and 2018 and Strix magazine. Her debut pamphlet Heart Murmur was published in May 2019 by Calder Valley Poetry. It features poems based on her experience working as a GP and explores the workings of the body and mind in varied and humorous ways.

Admission is free, but booking is strongly advised as we expect this event to be very popular.

Turning into a pantomime?

It is understandable that residents want to know when the £42 million community stadium complex will be fully open for business.
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Taxpayers will point out that around £10 million of the costs have come out of their pockets.

Originally scheduled for a 2012 opening, delays dogged the project. Even after contracts had been signed for a June 2019 opening “labour shortages” meant that the actual stadium opening was put back to the autumn 2019 and then to the Spring 2020.

It seemed that the dates were firming up as the IMAX cinema admitted its first paying customers before Christmas while an excitable gaggle of Councillors started tweeted pictures of the “finished” stadium.

The Knights Rugby Club said that their first home fixture of the new season would take place at the stadium on 9th February. The stadium was also set to host a big “double header” with Super League clubs Toronto and Wakefield facing off on the 22nd March.

Questions at a York City supporters forum led to a statement from an executive councillor last week who confirmed that a transport plan was in place. It would get large crowds to the out of town, 8000 capacity, stadium site. (Currently, York City matches attract around 2500 spectators)

However, it remained unclear whether joint entry/transport tickets would be sold and information about public transport capacity was scarce, given that the opening (rugby) fixture was less than a month away.

A “trial” dinner event was then cancelled, and the Knights said that their 9th February fixture might have to be moved to Bootham Crescent.

We think that the stadium will be an asset for the City. When the interest level stabilises, after the first couple of games, transport arrangements should also be adequate.

We are less convinced about the viability of some of the other elements of the development not least the additional swimming pool.

But we are, where we are.

The Council and its contractors should now be able to give a clear programme of actions leading up to firm commissioning and hand-over dates.

NB. Local side York Acorn Rugby got off to a winning start on Saturday in their cup match against Hammersmith Hills Hoist. The score line was 36 points to 14. There were no problems accommodating the crowd at the Thanet Road Stadium (!)

Pantomime

Not been short on local news this week with a lot of speculation that the Theatre Royal’s annual pantomime will be ditched.

The seasonal event was a favourite with many residents and attracted a loyal following. In the 80.s and 90’s the income from the pantomime kept the Theatre Royal afloat.

The audience numbers were so large that the Opera House, and briefly also the Barbican, put on competing pantomimes.

Lots of people were prepared to pay for “more of the same” right up to the time that the star Berwick Kaler announced his retirement last year. Tickets sales were down, and reviews were mixed, for this years “Kalerless” event (he did do some script-writing).

With the benefit of hindsight, the Theatre might have been wise to boost the cast with some fresh – well known – names this year.

The theatre then announced last week that it would be taking “brave” decisions, so the writing was one the wall.

It coincided with a bid from the Theatre Royal for £500,000 of investment by the York Council. That implied a need for an ongoing public subsidy level similar to that seen in the last decade.

We have no doubt that there will be at least one pantomime in York next Christmas.

Nostalgia rules with a seasonal production of the 70 year old “White Christmas” having pulled in big West End audiences this season. The Theatre Royal needs to exploit that market. The City’s seasonal background atmosphere offers a huge marketing advantage.

Whether the present cast of the traditional panto can find another venue for their product – and continue to attract audiences – will become clear later in the year.

The Theatre Royals plans should become clearer this week.