Sunday, 28 September 2014

Sonia Bidwell - Textile Artist & Storyteller

In our radio show today, from 4pm, Lucy will be talking about a fascinating piece of artwork by Scottish artist Sonia Bidwell.

Lucy explains: "On 14th September, I woke up thinking of Tonga and the islands in the Pacific and the part they played in the first conflict that affected the entire globe.  So I had to look up their involvement in WW1.  I mentioned this on Facebook and Sonia sent me a photograph of one of her beautiful works of art."
The work of art in question is a wall hanging (see photo) showing the horrific journey of the islanders from Tonga  to the western front via Egypt.  Sonia also included the poem "Despise not the day of small things" written by E. Mary Cruttwell, which was featured in 'The Fiery Cross' WW1 Poetry Anthology, edited by Mabel C. Edwards and Mary Booth and published in 1915 by .
Sonia says :  "I was so moved to indignation I did this wall hanging showing the islanders' horrific journey to the western front via Egypt. I also included the poem by Mary Cruttwell.
The yellow represents Egypt see pyramids.   The central section is the Western Front.  The photo shows the Nuiens on trench digging, then the top is the white cliffs of Dover and Hornchurch " Horns from coat of arms "where they were sent to recover or die.  The photo of a grave Card in the left hand corner is "A long way to Tipperary" as sung in Maori."
With many thanks to Sonia, who is a Textile Artist and Storyteller who lives in Scotland, where she is well known for her unusual interpretations of myths and legends, folklore and traditions.  She designs and makes wall hangings incorporating fabric, weaving and objets trouvĂ©s.
To find out more about Sonia's wonderful work, please see

Saturday, 27 September 2014

Local Football Round Up - 27th September 2014

Blackpool Wren Rovers Reserves beat Thornton Cleveleys Reserves 5-3 in the West Lancashire League Reserves Division (in photo) while the first team won by the same scoreline away at Lostock St Gerrards to stay top of the Premier Division.

Elsewhere in the golden triangle of local football, Squires Gate won 4-3 away at Bacup & Rossendale United while AFC Blackpool drew 2-2 at home to Stockport Sports. Squires Gate are now 14th in the North West Counties League Premier Division with 16 points from 10 games. AFC Blackpool are still bottom - 2 poiunts adrift of Bacup & Rossendale with 3 points from 14 games.

More info: 

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Win Copies of the new "Essential Swing Out Sister" CD in our great competition - closes midnight Sunday!

We have two copies of the new "Essential Swing Out Sister" greatest hits CD to give away in a great free-to-enter competition.

To have a chance of winning, all you have to do is listen to our radio show on 103.2 Preston FM this Sunday from 4pm and then send us a message telling us which 2 tracks we have played from the CD.

There are two chances to win: one via email - send your answer HERE and the other by sending a PM via our Facebook page HERE

The deadline for sending in your answers in 12 midnight on Sunday evening and the two lucky winners will be announced on Monday morning.


Radio Show On 103.2 Preston FM - This Sunday from 4pm

In our radio show on 103.2 Preston FM this Sunday afternoon  from 4pm, we'll be playing a couple of tracks from the new "Essential Swing Out Sister" greatest hits CD, along with more great new releases from the Subways, The Dan Forshaw Trio & Santa Maradona FC.

We feature Alma Cogan in our Party Like It's 1959 spot and Lucy talks about:
the  Essex Memorial to the airship shot down by Lt William Leefe Robinson VC on 2-3 September 1916
 Marie Stopes WW1 female poet
Nora Neilson Gray - British Artist and designer, orderly in France in WW1
Sonia Bidwell's wall hanging about the contribution of the Isle of Niu in the South Pacific in WW1
Sister F.I.C. Tyson the Australian nurse buried in Sutton Veney churchyard, Wiltshire
Poet in the City London event on 13th October 2014.

PLUS there's another great extract from "The Nurse's Story - Sketchbook from Belgium".

So join us from 4pm on Sunday on 103.2 Preston FM. If you are outside the broadcast area, you can "listen live" over the internet at 

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

The Subways - Autumn Tour Dates 2014

The Subways have UK tour coming up in October and anew album due out early next year.

We'll be playing the first single release from the new album in our radio show on 103.2 Preston FM this Sunday from 4pm and the band will playing live at 53 Degrees in Preston on 25th October.

The full list of tour dates is as follows:

01-Oct-14 - Colchester- Arts Centre
02-Oct-14 - Gloucester
04-Oct-14 - Guildford
05-Oct-14 - Portsmouth
07-Oct-14 - Exeter
08-Oct-14 - Cardiff
10-Oct-14 - Swansea
11-Oct-14 - Coventry
14-Oct-14 - Newry
15-Oct-14 - Belfast
17-Oct-14 - Wakefield
18-Oct-14 - York
20-Oct-14 - Newcastle
21-Oct-14 - Edinburgh
22-Oct-14 - Glasgow
24-Oct-14 - Aberdeen
25-Oct-14 - Preston
27-Oct-14 - Derby
28-Oct-14 - Peterborough
29-Oct-14 - Cambridge
31-Oct-14 - Oxford
01-Nov-14 - Norwich                       

More info from: 

CD Release: The Essential Swing Out Sister - out 7th October 2014

THE ESSENTIAL SWING OUT SISTER released by Union Square Music 7
Swing Out Sister has created a sound which is more relevant now than ever before. Corinne Drewery & Andy Connell, original purveyors of jazz infused pop, have over the past 28 years continued to celebrate the eclectic cultural mix of the UK's constantly changing music scene with a sound that owes as much to hip-hop and jazz fusion as sixties pop and soul.

A new compilation album featuring all their biggest and best loved recordings is scheduled for release in October.

Swing Out Sister’s first single, 'Breakout’ from their debut album 'It's Better To Travel' (1987), cemented their reputation for well crafted songs and cinematic arrangements.

Breakout brought the band worldwide success and international acclaim, with singles 'Surrender', 'Twilight World' and 'Fooled By A Smile’ to follow.

In 1988, Swing Out Sister were nominated for two Grammy Awards including 'Best New Artist' and 'Best Pop Vocal Performance by a Group or Duo' for Breakout.

Their second album, 'Kaleidoscope World’, released in 1989 spawned the hits 'Where In The World', 'You On My Mind', 'Forever Blue' and 'Waiting Game’ and featured arrangements by Jimmy Webb, showing the versatility of the band’s song writing ability and a celebration of the Brill Building writers such as Bacharach and David and Goffin and King.

'Get In Touch With Yourself' (1992) followed with their cover of Barbara Acklin's 'Am I The Same Girl?’ and 'Notgonnachange' (the version on this album was remixed by Frankie Knuckles) both international chart hits for the band.

'The Living Return' (1994) featured 'La La Means I Love You' and was featured on the soundtrack to 'Four Weddings And A Funeral'.

A consistent stream of popular albums have followed over the years proving that Swing Out Sister still deliver stylishly smooth 'sophisti-pop' mixed with gorgeous vocals and lush melodies. They have toured extensively, especially in the USA and Japan, and on the international jazz festival circuit, recently performing big band arrangements of their songs at JavaJazz in Jakarta alongside Stevie Wonder and Bobby McFerrin.

Other albums:  'Shapes And Patterns' (1997), 'Filth & Dreams' (1999), Somewhere Deep In The Night' (2001), 'Where Our Love Grows' (2004), 'Beautiful Mess' (2008) and 2012's, 'Private View'.

The full track listing for, 'The Essential Swing Out Sister' is as follows:
Twilight World (Superb, Superb, Mix)
Fooled By A Smile
Where In The World
Waiting Game
You On My Mind
La La (Means I Love You)
Am I The Same Girl?
Notgonnachange (Frankie Knuckles Classic Club Mix)
Precious Words
Heaven Only Knows
Waters Of March (with Akiko) (single edit)
Somewhere Deep In The Night
Love Won't Let You Down
Forever Blue (Big band version)* previously unreleased.
The Windmills Of Your Mind

Saturday, 20 September 2014

Local Football Round Up - 20th September

Blackpool Wren Rovers maintained their 2 point lead at the top of the West Lancashire League Premier Division with a close fought 2-1 win over Euxton Villa.

Next Saturday Wren Rovers are away at Lostock St Gerrards while Wren Rovers Reserves are at home to Thornton Cleveleys Reserves in a 3pm kick off.


Saturday, 13 September 2014

Local Football Round Up - 13th September 2014

Blackpool Wren Rovers came back from two goals down to draw 2-2 after 90 minutes in their Lancashire Amateur Shield 1st round game before losing out to Slyne With Hest 4-3 on penalties.

Elsewhere in the golden triangle of local football, AFC Blackpool picked up only their second league point of the season in a 2-2 draw at home to Winsford United in the NWCFL Premier Division.

Squires Gate drew 2-2 away at Bamber Bridge in the 1st Qualifying Round of the FA Cup and will have a replay at home on Tuesday evening.

AFC Blackpool are also at home on Tuesday in league action against last season's Division One champions Nelson.

Blackpool Wren Rovers are at home next Saturday against Euxton Villa in the West Lancashire League Premier Division in a 3pm kick off.

Friday, 12 September 2014

Tune in to our Radio Show on 103.2 Preston FM This Sunday from 4pm

Join us from 4pm on Sunday afternoon on 103.2 Preston FM for another Best Kept Secrets radio show.

As part of our continuing First World War centenary commemorations, Lucy will be talking about:
An event in London on Wednesday, 17th September at the Fleming Collection Gallery
Mike Clayton's Great Aunt - Elsie Amelia Highfield and her autograph book
Dean Echenberg website -
Tanya Birnie's weblog Headstones of graves of women who served and died in WW1
Caroline Stevens' relation Kate Luard, nurse + book.
"Reporting under fire 16 Daring Women Journalists" by Kerrie Logan Hollihan, Chicago Review Press, 2014
Canal Poetry Laureate and the Canal Project
Martin Zieren's new German poets
America in the First World War and the sinking of the "Brindisi"
and she will also be reading passages from “A War Nurse's diary”

We have new releases from April Moon, Flies On You, Boz Hayward, Paul Olexa and The Meantime.
Plus "Party like It's 1959" with Miki & Griff and Petula Clark.

So join us from 4pm on Sunday afternoon on 103.2 Preston FM - or, if you live outside the broadcast area, you can "listen live" on

Thursday, 4 September 2014

WW1 Commemorative Event, Barnoldswick, W. Yorkshire - 6th and 7th September 2014

News just in of a special WW1 Commemorative Event  will be held on Saturday, 6th September 2014 at Barnoldswick Heritage Weekend when an early tragedy of World War One will be commemorated with a major exhibition during the weekend of 6th and 7th September 2014

For further details, please see the "Visit Barnoldswick" website