The Seeing Eye photography exhibition – Farnham Pottery

Farnham Pottery is not only a place to learn how to throw a pot, do some life drawing or write a masterpiece (to mention just a few of their programmes) it also makes an engaging exhibition space. At the latest exhibition – Seeing Eye – Responding to the environment – works by six photographers are given extra dimension by being displayed on walls and in corners that seem to hum with almost 150 years of creativity.

The six photographers are varied but fit together neatly. Headlining is Jacqui Hurst who delights in gardens and urban areas colonised by unexpected plants and will return to the same spot time and again to find the right light and the composition that works to create her beautiful  work. Angela Shaw also turns to nature for her inspiration and works as an “environmental artist”.

“I am not a photographer, I am an artist working with light,” she says. She has created intriguing installations, placing items in Alice Holt Forest and playing around with them then photographing them, and also uses pinhole cameras to take pictures over months, something that allows her to capture the changing seasons.

“It’s about slowing down to spend time in nature,” she says.

In contrast, Hugh Rawson literally “shoots from the hip”. A headteacher at a local school, Hugh turned to street photography in recent years as a creative outlet and is particularly drawn to urban environments where, camera on his hip, he takes thousands of pictures from which he chooses just a few. He chooses well. The results are cool, compelling glimpses of lives, mostly in black and white, which leave you wanting more.

Mike Green, on the other hand, also produces black and white film but works the old way – 36 prints per film, each shot lovingly often after a long wait. “I often find a spot which speaks to me as a place and then I wait for perhaps a couple of hours and I see how people interact with that space.” The results are little stories which draw the viewer in.

Luke Whatley-Bigg takes a different angle – usually from the sky. Just 13 years old, he specialises in drone photography and takes his drone out to local landmarks where somehow me manages to hold the drone steady and work out exactly the right angle for stunning photographs. He is certainly a name to watch.

Finally, Wrecclesam resident Miriam Windsor is exhibiting six intensely personal photographs of women who have suffered from post-natal depression, alongside letters written by the present-day women to their former selves. Among them is a picture of Miriam herself and it is photography which helped her to find a sense of herself when she was ill after the birth of her daughter 10 years ago. The portraits are regal, like ones you might find on the walls of a stately home, the letters are intensely moving and the combination is a reminder of both the dignity and the fragility of human life.

The exhibition continues until December 7. For details see www.thefarnhampottery.co.uk or call 07733 325138.

By Stella Wiseman

Petersfield CEO to run new Peru endurance ultra-marathon

Jakob Bloch, CEO of Commodity Appointments based at The Old Dairy in Petersfield, will be taking part in the first Peru edition of ‘Marathon de Sables’ next week.

An experienced endurance runner, he has already run across the Sahara Desert in the legendary Marathon des Sables on behalf of a Liphook-based children’s charity.

The Marathon de Sables, known as the Toughest Footrace on Earth, is a six-day ultra-marathon over a distance of about 250km. This is the first time it will take place in the Ica desert, 300km south of Lima.

Jakob will be again taking part with the aim of raising publicity and funds for Dreams Come True, an inspiring team of people who fulfil moments of joy for children with serious and life-limiting diseases. If you would like to support Jakob’s efforts, please go to www.commodity.global/donate

Here is a brief trailer of what awaits him on this adventure:

https://vimeo.com/244031658

Great entertainment, in a bonkers kind of way!

REVIEW

The Game’s Afoot (Cheriton Players) 

Cheriton Village Hall

November 15-18 2017

It seemed so appropriate for Love Theatre Day to spend it in the lively company of Cheriton Players cheered enthusiastically by a supportive audience: local people putting on great entertainment at a sell out venue for local people.

And great entertainment it is too, in a bonkers kind of way: as with all things Holmes, some kind of belief needs to be suspended and from the opening to the denouement, this hard working cast and crew kept the action flowing, allowing full vent to the twists and turns of this “who-dunnit” written by Ken Ludwig. Not that I will spoil “the plot” for you, there are many red herrings along the way.

It is December 1936 and star William Gillette, admired the world over for his leading role in the play Sherlock Holmes, has invited his fellow cast-members to his Henley on Thames mansion for a  Christmas Party following an abortive attempt on his own life on stage some 2 weeks earlier. But when one of the guests is later stabbed to death, the festivities in this isolated house of tricks and mirrors quickly turn dangerous. Then it’s up to Gillette himself, as he assumes the persona of his beloved Holmes, to track down the killer before the next victim appears, or do they?

Helena Gomm has created an excellent medium for this talented cast as they pull out all the stops in this outrageous piece of story-telling. Pace is quick fire as it should be and laughs are a plenty as each scene brings more revelations and death. The opening of Act 2 is particularly well done and the ‘victim’ is to be highly commended for ‘their’ role being mercilessly dragged around the stage and pushed in and out of cupboards etc. Always a joy to see the use of this tiny stage being used so expertly in set design, sound and lighting. The lamps were particularly authentic and there was the usual attention to detail throughout, be it music, costume jewellery etc.

The performances were particularly well suited to the cast, each bringing a sense of fun and panache to the writing. Richard Perkins as Gillette, razor sharp in his line delivery and stage presence, was matched by the flamboyant and majestic Fiona Mackay’s arch theatre critic Daria Chase. Pauline Cornter was suitably dotty as his mother, whilst Katie Hinds also donned a deer stalker as a steely Inspector Goring. Claire Smith and Craig Robb were admirable as the newly-wedded couple, both with secrets to hide.  David Cradduck and Marilyn Weston, always good on stage, similarly secretive brought much hilarity to their roles especially as she regularly slapped him throughout the course of the evening.

That they all get on so well is plain to see, especially when all the cast were on stage together and all clearly enjoying themselves immensely.

That is what theatre is all about really – and local theatre does not get much better than this.

David Putley

Petersfield gets All Shook Up with Elvis musical by PTG

All Shook Up (Petersfield Theatre Group)

Festival Hall

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

All Shook Up is basically Elvis Presley songs strung together with a Twelfth Night storyline – girl dressing as boy, love triangles, and a Shakespearean happy ending where all the couples get together. There’s nothing demanding about it – it’s a fun romp with lots of comedy and plenty of musical numbers to sing along to.

There are also a fair few stereotypes – the museum lady who turns into a nymphomaniac at the read of a sonnet (I was waiting for the ‘why Miss Jones you’re beautiful!’ moment as Emma Twist, playing Miss Sandra, went from glasses and tweed to skintight dress and loose hair); not to mention the man-weary landlady who only needs the love of a good guy to loosen her up a bit and make her less shrill and carping… hmm… but that’s an issue I have with the book by Joe Dipetrio, not PTG.

Sadly, Amy Perkins who was due to play one of the leads, Natalie, was ill, so was replaced at short notice and with great success by Charlotte Turnbull. Natalie, the ‘Viola’ character in this, is a tomboy mechanic who pretends to be a boy in order to get close to the “guitar-playing roustabout” former jailbird Chad, who sweeps all the girls off their feet when he rocks into this sleepy American town on his motorbike. Ross Cobbold played the swaggering, sneering, singing trouble maker with great style. He has good comedy timing and a remarkably Elvis-sounding voice too.

Also excellent was Ewan Wharton as Dennis, Georgie Gardner-Cliff as Lorraine and Ethan Emery as Dean. These youngsters were all very natural onstage, with lovely singing voices. Well done to director John-Paul McCrohon for getting the best out of them. I look forward to seeing all the young leads onstage in Petersfield again.

Kerry McCrohon as Sylvia, the world-weary, seen-it-all, been burned by love landlady of the town bar, was very moving in her song, There’s Always Me. She brought experience to the stage, as did Conrad Stephenson as the widower Jim. His transformation from sad dad to Chad impersonator was very funny.

But the standout of the show was, for me, the diminutive Michelle Magorian as the battle-axe (another stereotype, tut tut, Mr Dipietro) Mayor Matilda Hyde – marching across the stage, never letting Sheriff Earl (played in hilarious hangdog silence by the perfectly-cast George Stephenson) get a word in. Her guitar contest with Chad surrounded by a bunch of angels was inspired. Hilarious. More please.

The ensemble members were hardworking and obviously enjoyed performing this show, at one point getting the audience up to dance. The band, led by Darren Alderton, certainly produced a lot of sound, but unfortunately, because of its placing at the very front of the stage, drowned out quite a lot of the songs. Actors seemed to be struggling to be heard above it, even with mics, which was a shame.

I liked the set with its two levels and the wide corrugated iron doors opening out at the back to change the setting. Set changes were speedy and effective. Costumes were wonderful, too.

This is a great fun show – it will certainly put a smile on your face and a spring in your step on a grim autumn evening. The show continues until Saturday night.

Kat Wootton

Churcher’s pupils STEAM in to Southampton for art day

The Year 4 children from Churcher’s College Junior School visited Southampton Art Gallery this week as part of their STEAM week work.

After a brief gallery tour they enjoyed a workshop with Jo, one of the museum’s resident artists. She gently guided the children through making a Medusa head out of clay- complete with writhing snakes for hair. This activity linked in with the work they have been doing this term in History on the Ancient Greeks.

With this in mind, the pupils were very anxious to see the Perseus room at the gallery, which exhibits 12 enormous paintings by Edward Burne-Jones depicting the famous legend. This trip is always fun and worthwhile and for many, it is their very first experience of an Art Gallery.

Annual U-11 football tournament hosted by Churcher’s Juniors

Churcher’s College Junior School hosted their annual U11 7 a-side Football Tournament and with 11 teams taking part the stage was set for a fantastic event – it didn’t disappoint!

With a total of 55 matches being played in a round robin format, the podium placed teams changed on regular occasion and going into the final round there were 4 teams in contention for the win.In the end it came down to the CCJS A Team beating Alton School in their final match to confirm Prince’s Mead as the overall winners with Churcher’s in second place and St Edmunds in third.

Churcher’s A team turned up ready to play a tough tournament but one that they knew they could win, having beaten almost every other team recently. The first match was against PGS and we came through well with a win, then came Oakwood where we experienced our first loss. As the games came through we went through a rollercoaster of emotions and results, winning or drawing most of our games we weren’t making our lives easy. Then came Churcher’s B, rivals and classmates all on the same pitch, it was going to be a good game and it didn’t disappoint, although under a huge amount of pressure Churcher’s B defended in numbers and defended well, with Churcher’s A unable to fine the net it ended 0-0. After a final few games Churcher’s A had given it everything, and due to earlier results, they now were reliant on other results elsewhere.

With the games ended it was up to Mr Forbes to announce the results, as the other teams were announced it came down to two and Churcher’s A had achieved a well-deserved second place. Well done to all the teams who took part.

Tips for a stress-free Christmas

By Geraldine Joaquim

Christmas is one of the most stressful times of the year. We all have an idea of what makes our ideal Christmas. We spend time making delicious food to share, as well as creating a welcoming and festive setting, and not forgetting injecting ‘magic’ for the children. All that effort for one special day.

We also add to the physical stress of Christmas by worrying about how it will go.  Anxiety is created by negative thinking; it’s not necessarily the actual event that causes the perception of a crisis happening but rather our own thought patterns. As part of our human survival mechanism we are predisposed to negatively forecast. This helped keep our ancestors alive, but Christmas is really not a life or death situation, however stressful it may seem! The primitive part of our brain, the part that is concerned with our survival, can’t tell the difference between imagination and reality, so every time we negatively forecast (or negatively ruminate on the past), it releases the same stress hormones as if we are going through a real event, ratcheting up the anxiety levels so that by the time we get to Christmas Day we feel ready to drop.

So how do we stop the stress surrounding Christmas and actually get back to enjoying it?

  1. Remember, no one wants you to fail. If you’ve gone to the trouble of hosting your Christmas Day, do bear in mind that your guests are on your side, and that also means it really doesn’t matter if things go wrong.
  2. It’s a shared responsibility. Give people jobs to do; it involves them in the day and gives you another pair of helping hands.
  3. Prepare in advance. Aim to be ready the day before the day before, so you’re not working down to the wire.
  4. Perfection is not all it’s cracked up to be. Focus on the bigger picture rather than the minutiae. Your family will appreciate a less-stressed you far more than they would appreciate seeing the festive yule log you created at midnight on Christmas Eve!
  5. Practise mindfulness. Being mindful means being present in the moment; it calms the mind. You can practise being mindful in your daily life: when you’re out walking the dog, use that time to notice what’s going on around you. Resist the temptation to let your brain tumble forward to whatever you’ve got to do next.  These moments create little oases of calm which makes an overall more relaxed you.
  6. Don’t over-think it. Instead of thinking about all those things that could go wrong, turn your mind to how great it will be, with images of smiling relatives, laughing children, hugs and kisses. These positive thoughts help to release a hormone called serotonin which is what keeps us on an even keel throughout the day.
  7. Create your own Christmas perfection. Sit down with your family and ask them what they enjoy about Christmas and how they’d like the day to be.

If you would like to know more about reducing stress or being mindful, contact Quest Hypnotherapy on 01798 344879 or see www.questhypnotherapy.co.uk

St Ives school shortlisted for TES award

 

 

St Ives School in Haslemere has been shortlisted for the independent pre-prep/prep school of the year award at the prestigious 2018 Tes Independent School Awards.

“This is a huge accolade as we are one of only eight schools nominated, with competition from some of the finest and most respected of the country’s 620 independent prep schools,” said head teacher Mrs Kay Goldsworthy.

“The nomination recognises the success of St Ives, not only in academic achievement but also innovation, imagination and efforts to develop children in ways that go beyond the league tables.

“We are of course extremely proud of the high academic standards of our pupils, in a non-selective environment, but we recognise that this represents only part of developing the whole child. The breadth of wider experiences offered at St Ives allows all our children to develop as individuals, to grow a general life-long love of learning and to naturally achieve and progress. This was evident in 50% scholarships to senior schools, 34 distinctions and five merits in Verse & Prose / Acting exams, qualification for the IAPS swimming and coming second in the National United Ideas invention competition.”

Ann Mroz, Editor of Tes (formerly known as the Times Educational Supplement), said: “Independent education in this country is world class. It’s one of Britain’s great success stories. And those shortlisted for the TES Independent School Awards are the cream of the crop. This year we had more entries than ever, the standard was the best yet and the competition fiercer than ever before.  To be shortlisted is an extraordinary achievement.”

St Ives Chair of Governors, Graham Harvey-Browne, said: “We are delighted and very proud to hear this wonderful news.  This is a testament to the dedication and hard work of Mrs Goldsworthy, Miss Smith and all of the teaching and support staff at St Ives, and is a clear indicator of the continued success of the school in producing well-rounded young people who are inspired and supported in achieving their potential.”

St Ives’ broad curriculum is enriched and enhanced by an array of activities and events which have provided good reason for nomination for this award; its Forest School, educational visits, focus on local community and whole school charity days are just a few examples of how it aims to broaden the perspective of pupils and develop the whole child.

Mrs Goldsworthy added: “At St Ives we provide opportunities for each child to discover, develop and showcase their individual interests and talents whether that be in music, art, sport or other areas. In this way, we provide a truly nurturing and inspiring environment.”

St Ives School, Three Gates Lane, Haslemere

01428 643734

stiveshaslemere.com

Do the maths – Alton College students can!

Pictured left to right: Lucy Bayliss, Dr Dave Lynch Curriculum Manager for Maths, Sara Garanito

Lucy Bayliss, previously at Amery Hill School and Sara Garanito, previously at Calthorpe Park School took part in this year’s Mathematical Olympiad for Girls. Over 1700 girls nationwide participated, with the top 25% receiving a Certificate of Distinction. The Mathematical Olympiad for Girls is an event run by the UK Mathematics Trust, introduced in 2011 to help schools and college nurture the talent of enthusiastic young female mathematicians. Sara received a Certificate of Participation and Lucy a Certificate of Distinction getting 10/10 for one of the questions (*below).
100 Maths students recently competed in the Senior Maths Challenge with nine achieving a gold award, 31 a silver award and 29 a bronze. Roughly 55,000 students nationally took the Challenge this year, a significant drop on previous years, but there was an increase in participants from Alton College. The Senior Maths Challenge consists of 25 very difficult non-calculator multiple-choice maths questions to be completed in 90 minutes. Students start with 25 marks, get four marks for each correct answer and lose one mark for each incorrect answer, to discourage guessing. See http://www.ukmt.org.uk/individual-competitions/senior-challenge/ for more information about the Challenge, along with the paper and solutions.
The College’s top scorer was Peter Morris, previously at Eggar’s School; he scored 109 out of 125 which means he goes through to the British Maths Olympiad Round 1 (BMO1). Only the top 1,000 students in the country qualify for the BMO1. A further nine students have got through to the Senior Kangaroo (SK) round, which involves the next 6,000 best students, who don’t qualify for the BMO1.
They are:
Harry Buchanan, previously at Perins School
Lucy Bayliss, previously at Amery Hill School
James Dedman, previously home educated
Marco Li, previously educated overseas
Cameron Neasom, previously at Bohunt School
Rebekah Aspinwall, previously at Amery Hill School
Sam Bishop, previously at St Edmund’s School
James Macmillan Clyne, previously at Bohunt School
Joe Parry, previously at The Petersfield School
Three examples of this year’s challenge are (an easy, medium and hard question):
Q2:  Last year, an earthworm from Wigan named Dave wriggled into the record books as the largest found in the UK.
Dave was 40cm long and had a mass of 26g. What was Dave’s mass per unit length?
A: 0.6 g/cm       B: 0.65 g/cm      C: 0.75 g/cm      D: 1.6 g/cm       E: 1.75 g/cm

Q11:  The teenagers Sam and Jo notice the following facts about their ages:
The difference between the squares of their ages is four times the sum of their ages.
The sum of their ages is eight times the difference between their ages.
What is the age of the older of the two?
A: 15                 B: 16                 C: 17                  D: 18                 E: 19

Q24:  There is a set of straight lines in a plane such that each line intersects exactly ten others.
Which of the following could not be the number of lines in that set?
A: 11                 B: 12                 C: 15                  D: 16                 E: 20

Answers are B, D and D.

The question Lucy got totally correct:
Let n be an odd integer greater than 3 and let M = n2 + 2n − 7.
Prove that, for all such n, at least four different positive integers (excluding 1 and M) divide M exactly.