A six week project by Ignite Theatre in Knightswood, resulted in an excellent theatre afternoon in Wellington Church Crypt Cafe recently. Entitled ‘A Cake and a Comedy’ the seven sketches, written and acted by the five members of the cast told of human relationships through food.
The creative work was cooked up at the Cookery School and through waiter training at The Buttery in Argyle Street. All the young people – from school age to early 20s – gave engaging and convincing performances.
These ranged from the exchange between a street beggar and a passer-by to parent and child perceptions of Santa’s tidbits and from the gauche beginnings of a romance to the misconceptions of different cultural ways. All the playlets were written by the young people and reflected their own experiences and perceptions and misperceptions where different cultures collide. An appreciative audience enjoyed the cafe atmosphere, the cakes and the coffee as well as the performances.
Ignite’s Artistic Director Aileen Ritchie, has been running a series of free drama workshops for young people aged from 8 to 21 from different cultural backgrounds, for more than two years.
She said: ‘We have been touring this show to audiences who might not get to see live theatre – from pensioners’ lunch clubs to local primary schools. The cast have been extremely professional and I think their creativity shines in this funny and life affirming festive show. We are hoping the valuable work experience it has given them will lead to more opportunities.’
Actor Karen Chanda (18) said she found the workshops fun. ‘They build your confidence. You meet new people and make lots of friends. And we’ve built up strong relationships through working together on this project.’
The cafe theatre programme started with ‘Seeds of Thought’ poet and musician Tawona Sitole playing the mbira, a metal, thumb piano from Zimbabwe. The young actors were in working mode as waiters at the Buttery on Sunday 2 December when a full afternoon tea with a string quartet was on offer for donations for Ignite’s work. The previous day, a juniors’ show called Magic Dust and Christmas at the Zoo was performed in Knightswood Congregational Church Hall, 12 Dunterlie Avenue, Glasgow, G13 3BA. Ignite Theatre also performed A Cake and A Comedy.
Funding for Ignite from the Equality and Human Rights Commission ends in December. Children in Need are expected to take over as the main funder after that.
The rodeo is coming to town on Saturday 14 April at the Glasgow Vet School Campus, 464 Bearsden Road, Glasgow, G61 1QH. Organised by second year students of Glasgow University Veterinary Medicine Association, the popular event attracted 3000 people last year and raised £15,000 for charities. This year will be the 52nd rodeo and will mark the 150th year of the Vet School. (For more information on 150th celebration see: – http://www.gla.ac.uk/schools/vet/aboutus/vet150/)
The beneficiaries from this year’s fund-raising will be: Scottish SPCA, Canine Partners, Riding for the Disabled and the Vet School Fund.
Since October the valiant band has been planning the charity day. They’ve received sponsorship from Burns Pet Food, Pets4 Vets; Les Ramblas Restaurant, Pet Crematorium and other companies. The committee and first year students played their part last month by bag packing in various large stores in Bearsden, Knightswood, Hillhead and Maryhill. Said their spokeswoman:’We raised money and received a great response from the public.’ They also received an unsolicited commendation for ‘brightening up a dull Saturday grocery shop’ with their yellow t-shirts, good manners and fun.
Companies have donated a wide range of prizes for the raffle, which will be sold by first year students from March until the Rodeo in April. The prizes range from a signed Scottish rugby shirt, family passes to Landmark Park, a Tanglewood TW29 DV acoustic guitar and bag, four club badges to Ayr Race Course, a chain saw sculpture and many dinner and beauty vouchers. To buy tickets at £1 each, contact: email@example.com
On the Thursday12 April, the committee will stage a Sub crawl for all veterinary students to raise money for the Rodeo and as a final de-stress event prior to their professional exams.
On the day of the Rodeo, attractions will include fun family rides and displays, craft stalls, animal tent, dog show, reptiles and small animals tent.
Work on Glasgow Housing Association (GHA) houses in Knightswood, Carnwadric, Penilee and Mansewood will be unaffected by the collapse of giant builders Connaught which went into administration this week.
GHA told the LOCAL NEWS that the contracts in those four areas – worth £7 million in total – would ‘continue as normal.’
Executive Director of Development and Regeneration Alex McGuire said contractors were in place to pick up and complete any work Connaught was carrying out.
Mr McGuire said: ‘We want to reassure tenants and factored homeowners they have nothing to worry about. Our replacement contractors are in place to complete the four projects Connaught was working on and one has already been on site today (Thursday 9 September)
The switch to replacement contractors has been seamless and will not affect the quality of work – in every case it will be carried out to our high standards. We can also guarantee there will be no extra costs passed on to homeowners.’
Three of the four Connaught projects were in the Southside and involved new roofs and overcladding. The other – in the West – involves fitting new kitchens and bathrooms.
The replacement contractors are companies which already carry out similar projects and are part of GHA’s capital investment programme.
Around 2,000 jobs were feared lost with the fall of Connaught but construction company Morgan Sindall looked likely to buy up the Connaught company’s social housing division as this LOCAL NEWS ENEWS letter went to press.
A new war monument, the result of tireless effort by local residents, was unveiled at Knightswood Cross recently to honour Glasgow veterans from all armed forces and conflicts.
The ceremony coincided with VE day, the anniversary of Germany’s unconditional surrender in1945, and the end of World War 2 in Europe and was led by Lord Provost Bob Winter.
The £15,000 for the memorial was raised by Knightswood resident Terry McCourt, who is a member of the Parachute Regimental Association. Terry said: ‘Our volunteers got special permission from Glasgow City Council to stand in Sauchiehall Street once a month and collect money. A further £10,000 worth of labour and materials was donated from Glasgow City Council, who are leasing the ground to the Parachute Regimental Association for £1 a year for ten years.’
Terry’s father fought in WW2 with the 2nd Battalion Cameronian Scottish Rifles. Terry himself served with the Parachute Regiment, 2nd Battalion and his eldest son, Terry Junior (27) is a Corporal in the Parachute Regiment. Terry said: ‘The regulars at the Lincoln pub in Knightswood have always shown strong support for the armed forces. They organise a regular Armistice Day parade and host a Christmas dinner for veterans from the Erskine Hospital.
‘That’s what gave me the idea. I checked and found there was no memorial to the armed forces in Knightswood. We have had great support from Councillor Jonathan Findlay, who did the legal work, and from Derek Johnstone at Co-Op monumental sculptors who made the 13.5 foot Celtic Cross. John Boyle from Wylie and Lochead Funeral Directors donated money to the fund as well.’
Colonel Bobby Steele of the Royal Highland Fusiliers Museum on Sauchiehall Street said: ‘I provided some support but all credit to Terry for getting this going. It’s a great thing for Glasgow.’
The ceremony was led by the Lord Provost Bob Winter, who praised the efforts that led to this unique monument, saying: ‘This memorial commemorates the living as well as the dead – all those who have served our country in the three armed services past, present and future. It is the only memorial for Veterans in Glasgow and will remind us of those young men and women who served and continue to serve our country in the defence of freedom around the world.’
Schoolchildren across Glasgow will have the chance to show off their footballing skills this May as part of a tournament that also brings them lessons in equality and understanding.
More than 500 primary seven youngsters will take part in A League for All Tournament at the Petershill Complex in Springburn.
Each school’s team of five will be drawn from a pool of 10 players, and organisers hope that linking the beautiful game to issues of race, gender, co-operation and competition will be an education for the children.
Tommy Breslin, of action group Show Racism the Red Card, said: ‘Football is a very important tool in helping tackle racism. We look at our football teams, they’re largely multicultural, multi ethnic, multi faith, multinational positive working environments and the fan base reflects that as well.
‘We’re delivering a lot of anti Islamophobia workshops in secondary schools in the Glasgow area, and the young people again are listening to us and the responses that are coming back are pretty positive. They’re questioning their assumptions, their attitudes and the peer pressure that’s put upon them.
‘Glasgow’s always been a very diverse society and I think that can only be a positive for the city.’
Besides SRRC, Glasgow City Council, Partick Thistle, the Scottish Refugee Council, the Jags Trust, the Scottish Fair Trade Forum and trade union Unison are backing the initiative.
Former Jags player Jim Duffy – now manager of Brechin City and a big supporter of community campaigns in football – wants to see teams work harder to reach out to potential fans from all backgrounds.
He said: ‘I think it’s long overdue that players get a bit more involved in the community, particularly the primary schools because they are still seen as role models – whether they like it or not. They go into the schools, the kids love it and I think eventually all the clubs will take part.’
Jim added: ‘We pride ourselves in being a diverse country, but it’s not all about that. For too long football clubs have just opened the doors and expected people to come to them, but these are changing days. They have to work harder and it is happening.
‘Unfortunately, as is the way with football, when there’s something negative it gets lots of publicity; when there’s something positive it gets little publicity, so we’ll chip away at it and
encourage more people to take part.’
The May tournament will precede Refugee Week Scotland, which takes place in June. The nine schools participating in A League for All are St Paul’s Primary, Blairdardie Primary, St Ninian’s Primary, Yoker Primary, Bankhead Primary, St Brendan’s Primary, Corpus Christi Primary, Garscadden Primary and Knightswood Primary.
Alison Burns, acting Principal, Knightswood Primary, said: ‘Obviously, football is going to be high on any 11-year-old’s list of priorities, so we feel that by teaching about racism, sexism, and sectarianism through football we’re going to capture their attention. They’re enthusiastic about participating in the programme and because football is played regularly within the school we think this will bring another aspect to our PE.’
By Erik Geddes
Glasgow’s community centres will bear the brunt of hefty budget cuts after the city announced it has a £61m hole in its finances this year.
There were jeers outside City Chambers as 150 people gathered to protest the cuts in public services, which will mean the closure of 11 community centres, a swimming pool and a community library.
Culture & Sport Glasgow will see its budget fall by some £1.7m.
A number of jobs – the city hopes up to 600 voluntary redundancies – in key areas such as community workers and welfare rights are to be slashed.
Some, but not all sports centres will shut for two half-days a week
Kelvingrove, the Gallery of Modern Art and the Burrell Collection – recognised as Glasgow’s flagship and showcase attractions – will not be affected by the reduced opening hours.
Knightswood Pool and Sighthill Community Library will close. In the east of the city, Bellrock Community and Garthamlock Recreation centres will go. The cuts mean closures of facilities in Cadder, Ledgowan, Wyndford and at Red Road.
In the south-east of the city, Cathkin will close, while Invercraig/West Drumoyne and Lorne Street centres in the south west are also targets.
In the west, Argo Street and Overnewton centres will also close.
The facilities to close are, according to the council, ones ‘which have both low usage and would require substantial funds for essential repairs’.
Nicola Burton, Chair of Save Lorne Street and Secretary of Kinning Park Community Council, was one of the protesters whose community centre is set to close on 31 March.
‘The mothers and toddlers are a massive part of Kinning Park community.
‘If this service is cut and the centre closed it would rip the heart out of Kinning Park.
‘Everyone from Mums and Tots, dance classes to community council meeting take place here.
‘We were not involved in the consultation process at all, I’ve not been able approach anyone from Culture and Sport Glasgow. The fact that they are now considered arms length seems to remove them from responsibility.’
Meanwhile, Glasgow City Council dismissed pressure to cut back on their use fancy cars at ceremonial occasions.
Steven Purcell, Leader of the Council, joked that certain elements of the Scottish Green Party Budget proposals were ‘middle class’, and the sort of things he would hear at a West End dinner party.
The proposal – from Councillor Danny Alderslowe – was to reduce the use of limousines by the council.
It was claimed that £175,000 could be saved by using taxis instead of limos for most journeys.
Councillor Alderslowe said: ‘Limos for councillors are a sheer indulgence during these hard times.’
Despite the Labour-led administration ignoring this proposal, he found reason to be positive with the school gardening projects proposals taken on board.
This will see new beds and fruit trees implemented in all of Glasgow’s ‘additional support for learning’ primary schools.
Speaking exclusively to LOCAL NEWS, Councillor Alderslowe said: ‘They (the Labour lead administration) have taken something from our budget every year for the past three budgets.
‘It’s good to know that they that they are adopting some health and some green issues, even if it’s just on a smaller scale.’
The biggest cheer of the chamber came when City Treasurer Gordon Matheson declared an extra £8m to deal with the pot holes in Glasgow’s roads, taking the total spend to £12m.
Celtic Connections is hitting the road in January with a series of community concerts by Bodega, one of Scotland’s top young folk bands.
Rated as one of the scene’s hottest acts, Bodega won a Young Folk Award in the 2006 BBC Radio 2 Folk Awards for their spin on traditional Scottish and Irish folk tunes.
In partnership with Culture and Sport Glasgow, the band will be appearing at Barmulloch Community Centre, Wallacewell Quadrant, on 15 January; Barlanark Community Centre, Burnmouth Road, on 21 January; Langside Halls, Langside Avenue, on 22 January; Penilee Community Centre, Gleddoch Road, on 28 January, and at Knightswood Community Centre, Alderman Road, on 29 January.
The band are also appearing at the Recital Rooms in City Hall on 16 January as part of Celtic Connections.