Friday, 12 November 2010

my week in brief

It's been a funny mix of stuff this week. After spending last weekend on the NUJ picket line (BBC staff strike over pensions row) in Sheffield, I returned to work on Monday. I've been covering a number of routine stories around my patch (Chesterfield & North Derbyshire and Rotherham) but I was asked to visit some BBC Children in Need funded projects around the region to produce some packages for broadcast. On Tuesday, I went to the Greentop Youth Circus in the old St Thomas' Church in Brightside. This is a fantastic scheme to get kids juggling, spinning the diablo, hoola-hooping and riding the uni-cycle and other things. Well, I was amazed at the range of skills these kids demonstrated. They were mixed in age and ability, but they were all having FUN and thanks to £78,000 of CIN cash,  they can keep on having more FUN and learn a few new tricks and make some new friends into the bargain. It was truly impressive stuff!.

On Wednesday, I went to one of the toughest areas of South Yorkshire. This is East Herringthorpe in Rotherham with high unemployment and poverty. I went to look up a youth project called the 'Base to Beat' music studio which has received £73,000 of CIN cash to help pay skilled and talented musician/youth workers to engage young people in writing, creating, recording and producing their own music. I interviewed Richard and Marcus at the project and four of the young musicians and was impressed at the dedication and enjoyment they get from being part of the project. Great work and some wonderful results in turning lives around.

Thursday was Remembrance Day (formerly Armistice Day) in the UK and I covered commemorations and other events at the Cenotaph in Sheffield. Very moving talking to veterans and meeting people who lost loved ones in all conflicts from 1914-1918 to the present day. Some black cab (the colour of the cab) taxi driver in Sheffield had to go and spoil it by refusing to carry a serving RAF officer.

Today, has been about gathering routine news stories in North Derbyshire. I visited the new Bolsover school which has been rebuilt with £16 million of Government funding and met some very committed PCSO's at Newbold in Chesterfield (These are uniformed officer attached to the Police in the UK) and which provide a visible presence on the streets to help deter and detect crime (no powers of arrest).

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