Sunday, 16 July 2017

Why Shouldn't Doctor Who be a Woman Mum?

Hi Andrew,

I've just read this

And I have to ask  you, what was the point of it?

The Daily Mail Online, I don't know why I do it. It's like a dirty little secret that I try and keep to myself (like the fact I occasionally eat a pot noodle) but it's out there now, yes sometimes I go on the website.

It's mostly for the Showbiz section and the comments to be honest, not the news.

God no.

You see I'd watched the unveiling of the 13th Dr on BBC ONE with my Daughter, she's 10, she couldn't understand why it was such a big deal that Dr Who was a female to be honest   "Why shouldn't the Dr be a woman Mum"


You ran a story soon after, about the unveiling of the wondeful Jodie Whittaker as the 13th Time lord, saying how it had divided fan and showing the tweets of said divided fans.

The ones you posted were mostly though negative ones I noticed.

And the comments *sighs* A Time Travelling shaoe shifting time lord who travels through time and space in a police box. But a female Dr? Holy shit having a vagina no, that's one step too far! Can't have that!

How incredibly depressing.

But do you know what was worse? The article underneath - with the accompanying picture of Jodie's (perfectly lovely) bare bum

"Jodie joins her male predecessors in stripping off"! Accompanied by several pictures of Jodie Whittaker in various naked poses from previous acting roles? None of the male time lords I noticed though? Trawling the internet for naked pictures of someone to post online - that sounds so seedy doesn't it, yet that's what you did.

So again I ask what was the point?

It's almost like your a bit sexist Daily Mail, like you don't actually agree with having a female Dr Who at all - but you can't actually say that out loud can you?Without looking like a misogynist So you throw out this completely pointless and degrading article.

"Doctor Nude!

That'show you define the First EVER female Dr Who? Really?

Shame on you

Tuesday, 4 July 2017

Cbeebies Land Hotel - A Few Thoughts


I saw your hotel advertised on TV recently.

As I watched a giant Iggle Piggle and his red blanket, looming over a child's bed. My initial thoughts were that perhaps I'd over indulged it a bit on the wine whilst Netflixing.
A quick perusal of social media however, told me that no, this wasn't some pinot grigio induced nightmare, you were actually opening a Cbeebies themed hotel.
So, with that in mind as I was no longer following what we were watching on Netflix, likely due to the wine consumed, I decided to have a little look to see what it was all about.

Not that we're planning on staying anytime soon*or anything, our daughter is no longer of an age where she watches Cbeebies. She's moved on to the world of YouTube, and watches videos of gamer's playing and talking all things Minecraft, and annoying American kids reviewing toys now.
It's an improvement on wanting to punch Postman Pat in the face and being creeped out by Baby Jake though, no offence.

Anyway after I had finished having a look at it all, I found I had a few questions, and also some suggestions for you to take on board before you open, on the 8th of July.

I hope that's OK with you?

Firstly - where on earth is Tom Hardy?

You tease us with him reading the bedtime story, making the witching hour of bedtime somewhat bearable, and yet there is a distinct lack of him anywhere in the hotel or Cbeebies land.
What's that about! I thought he was quite the marketing ploy for the BBC, something for the Mum's eh? (And we thank you we really do) Not that i was expecting him to wandering around shirtless around the park but you come on, you could have given us something!

Mr Bloom and Andy are NO substitute for Tom Hardy! No matter how tight their trousers are. Sorry boys.

Where's Tom *sobs* 

You gave Postman Pat his own ride? Really?

Pat's parcels have been mixed up! The rides say's! Well of course they have, because Pat is absolutely bloody useless at his job. He shouldn't have a ride based on this fact, it'll make him even more complacent.

Report to the sorting office to receive your instructions and become part of Psstman Pat's 'Special Delivery Service'  Does the ride involve such things as bumbling around, chatting to a cat, losing parcels and generally getting on everyone's nerve's? Because that seems to be all it takes to be part of The Royal Mail's Special Delivery Service according to Pat.

Speaking of Pat, please please do not give him any customer facing job roles. Or any job roles come to that matter. Could you imagine him on reception? I mean he can't even deliver one measly letter
without completely cocking things up .How would he manage to check in a coach load of guests at the same time? You'd find him rocking under the reception desk, stroking Jess (NOT a euphermisim) and mumbling to himself. He is also incredibly wasteful of company resources, for someone who once called in a helicopter to deliver ONE parcel who would he call on if someones suitcase went missing? The Navy?

Hello I'm useless at absolutely everything.

The Octonauts

Is it safe to have a polar bear, on reception? How do you find a suit that fits?
Why hasn't the polar bear eaten the penguin or the cat? Why are they all the same size?

So many Octonaut based questions.

I liked the themed bedrooms.

But Postman at isn't really going to be knocking on the bedroom door as the advert shows surely? Bit creepy.

Any plans for a Tom Hardy themed bedroom?

I believe the 'In the Night Garden' Bedroom suite plays the theme tune as you enter the room?
I think it's far to say that after a day with toddlers, in a theme park. The last thing I would want to hear is anyone singing about Iggle piggle as I step through the door.
Especially after my child has possibly had a meltdown whilst waiting for the 'In the Night Garden' boat ride.  A strong G&T waiting would be preferable.

Right, where's the mini bar.

Will Mr Bloom be your on site gardener? 

Asking for a friend.

Will Charlie and Lolas parents be making an appearence on their ride?

Or are they still being neglectful T***s and letting Charlie raise his little Sister single handedly on a concoction of pink milkshakes and biscuits?

Yup, looks like it!

Does the Hotel have an infirmary aka a Bar?

After a day of primary colour based overload, Mr Tumble, Iggle Piggle and bloody Pat all in such close proximity. Do you have a place for stressed parents to rock in a dark corner at night? Perhaps with booze and moderately priced maize based snacks.

So just a few thoughts Cbeebies - good luck with the hotel launch.


* happy to come along for a honest review if you want to watch a middle aged Mother try and get her 10 year old daughter to go on an In The Night Garden boat ride. And her husband to stay in a Octonaut themed bedroom.

Keep Pat away fro me though, he gives me the rage.

Sunday, 25 June 2017

A love letter to Storyhouse

This may come as no secret to those who knows me in real life, or to those who follow me on social media, but I am just a little bit love with Chester's Storyhouse. OK, a love, and I don't throw that word around lightly. That's usually only reserved for my very nearest and dearest, a cold glass of pinot grigio. Oh and Tom Hardy, obviously.

It's just that my feelings for Storyhouse go beyond being just a crush, or a brief encounter, like my flirtation with a gym membership did. I'm not going to turn my back on it if the plush red carpet fades, or if the furniture that looks like it belongs in a luxury hotel get's a little bit grubby.

We might not always get along all the time of course, we nearly fell out as I navigated the website one evening, and when I felt like I might develop claustrophobia stood in the Queue of one of the smaller ladies loos! But getting through little bumps in the road like that, are the sign of a good relationship I think.

So Storyhouse, thanks for coming into my life. I love thee. Here's why.

 1. You came along at just the right time

We have no culture! We need a cinema they said, we need a theatre, they said. We're losing people to Manchester and Liverpool! I know, things were starting to get a bit manic .....

So what happened? Well you came along and gave them exactly what they wanted. A £37 million pound investment in our beautiful city. A 100 seat cinema, showing the big hits as well as smaller independent films. A theatre sitting up to 800, a restaurant and bar, and wrapping it's arms lovingly around the whole building, is the library.
You gave us everything we needed and more, all in one space. And all by redeveloping one of the city's most iconic buildings. The 1930's art deco, Odeon building.

Thanks Storyhouse.

Merging the old, with the new.

2. I can read, and eat, and drink wine....all in one place and nobody will judge me!

Storyhouse has genuinely become one of my favourite places to spend some free time. I can change my book, read a newspaper and grab a coffee. Or a wine, if it's at a reasonable time in the day of course *cough* I can order a bite to eat and take a seat to settle in and read for as long as I wish. You also never know who is going to be there, I've had a coffee listening to live music, and read a book whilst watching children excitedly dressing up in Alice in Wonderland costumes, it's a real hub of activity.

If it's peace and quiet you want, then you can sit upstairs in one of the quieter reading areas in Storyhouse. .

No disapproving looks if you drink wine in a library! Not that I've tried.....

3. You like Kids!

Kids are welcome, kids feel welcome and as a parent? That's a big deal.

Firstly the kids library, it's a joy to enter with it's bright colours, decorative items and the comfy window seats. You don't feel you have to hush them every five seconds through fear of disapproving tuts and stares They have their own small theatre space where story time, and music time takes place, They can also do arts and crafts here, dressing up, puppets I've seen it all.

My 10 year old feels like she can walk around the building, interact, look at books and feel's as if this is much her library as much as the adults, I love that.

Best of all Under 12's go free! All children can experience the joy of theatre as they are free under 12 (with accompanying paying adult) Whilst some may, and do take advantage (an entire row of loud schoolchildren sat behind me at one show) You can't deny it makes theatre accessible to all, and listening to the children laughing and clapping and gasping along to Shakespeare? Whats not to love about that.

No parenting with hushed whispers needed here at Storyhouse!

4. You can take classes.

Storyhouse also offers a wide range of classes suitable for all ages and open to everyone. From sewing club, to creative writing and scrabble club. Sessions to help those looking into their family history, work club - which is free to anyone unemployed, to give them the skills they need to look for work. And an online basics class, a reading group for the visually impaired. Hey, there was at one point a Beyonce dance class! Yes really.

5 The Library won't mind if you talk

I think this has to be the most controversial part of Storyhouse. The library.
Now some HATE the fact that you can actually speak in a library. Personally? I love it. I love feeling like I can walk around and not feel like I'm in a museum with a squeaky shoe. Some people hate this and need peace and quiet, for this there are the reading rooms upstairs, and lots of nooks and cranny's you can hide away in. If you really need absolute peace and quiet to read you could you know, always take the book home, That's kinda the point of the library anyway right?

Quieter reading areas.

6. It's open until 10 pm

Why do we need a library open until 10 pm I've heard people moan. Well, why not?
People can pop in after work, and not everyone's work finishes at 5 pm! They can use the library, or grab a bite to eat before the cinema or theatre. Parents waiting to pick up kids from town/parties can do so without mindlessly wandering around Tesco buying £35 of stuff you didn't really need in order to not pay for parking, we've all done this!.
You can grab a drink in there, Students can study.

I've seen the building abuzz with activity, yes even after 7pm.

Open for good times, even past 8 pm.

7. There's always someone around

Not following you around to make sure you don't slip a book under your jumper, or sneak popcorn into the cinema...which is actually fine to do btw. These are the fabulous Storyhouse helpers.
Wherever you look, from the lobby to the library, and the theatre spaces. If you need any help to navigate the building, the bookshelves, or to check out or return a book, they'll be right behind you. In a totally helpful and non creepy way as I've made it sound.

8. They like a Tweet.

If your on Twitter give them a follow, They are not only are pretty hot at tweeting about whats coming up. they are also good getting back to you with any complaints or queries.
They also have a sense of humour. A must in any good relationship.

Ahh Storyhouse, you smooth talker.

9. They cater for all tastes.

Chester wanted a theatre, they got a theatre. Ahhhh but is it bringing the shows that we see in Manchester and Liverpool? (It's always Liverpool and Manchester)
Yes, Yes it is.
Blood Brothers, Footloose, Spamalot. Along Shakespeare, The Beggars Opera, comedy and children's favourites such as Alice in Wonderland, There is something for absolutely watch at Storyhouse.

10, But they don't sell pints.

And if that's the worst part of this relationship Storyhouse? You and me will be just fine.

Here's to a long and happy future Storyhouse


Find out what's going on at Storyhouse here

Pictures with thanks from Rob Jeffries, mrsrachelokelly, Storyhouse and The Chester Blog 

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