Letters - November 11, 2013

Picture Martin Bostock'Singer Gillian Teague, winner of the Rose Bowl Trophy at Blackpool Music Festival.
Picture Martin Bostock'Singer Gillian Teague, winner of the Rose Bowl Trophy at Blackpool Music Festival.
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Last Blackpool festival

End of era

There were mixed emotions among the members and friends of Blackpool Festival for Music Dance and Speech who came to the Silver Rose Bowl Competition on November 2 at the end of four days’ competition in the three disciplines.

The high standard of singing from the five entrants for the Rose Bowl Competition was received with rapturous applause.

Gillian Teague (Blackpool), Francis Cotton (Isle of Man) and Glynn Morris (Sale) have been competing in the festival for many years and we were delighted to welcome two new (young) singers (Alsager, Burnley).

The adjudicator was Charlotte Kinder.

Charlotte attended Arnold School and graduated from the Royal Northern College of Music before continuing her studies at Il Conservatorio di Santa Cecilia, Rome and has a wide Opera and Concert repertoire.

Joanna Porter, equally qualified, was the accompanist for the demanding Concert choices of the five performers.

There was true delight for the evening’s performances and the results were announced and prizes given.

However this, the 112th, has been the last Blackpool Festival.

The audience received the news with great sadness when chairman Neill Oldham announced that the difficult decision had been made due to many circumstances beyond his and the Festival Committee’s control.

The Festival movement enables many young and not so young aspiring performers to have a platform nationwide.

Adjudicators give constructive criticism adding to the experience a performer might gain in his or her discipline.

As an example, recently we have had two West End ‘Billy Elliot’s performing in the dance section of our festival, to further their skill.

The Winter Gardens stage was the first home for Blackpool Musical Festival as it was then known and John Allen was chairman.

Marilyn Stewart succeeded him in 1987 and instigated the move to Arnold School to cut costs.

Bispham High School has been the recent venue for the festival.

Both have provided excellent facilities for staging the festival at a high level.

Blackpool will be a great loss to the festival movement.

Its high standards in music and speech choices have always been its benchmark.

Isabel Henshaw

Blackpool Festival 
Committee Member

Thanks for assistance


May I please thank the kind people who came to my aid when I fell on Cleveleys Promenade on Monday November 4.

I appreciate all you did for me and thank you most sincerely for your kindness.

Beryl Boothman

Rossall Lane


Hard line on cyclists


Regarding the story about a cyclist thrown in the cells for not having lights on his bike (Gazette, November 7).

Let’s not stop there.

We should have zero tolerance, and legislate for compulsory wearing of helmets as they do in Australia.

Also, what about having some kind of warning device to alert unwary pedestrians if a bike is approaching at speed from behind.

May I suggest a bell.

It is safer to walk in the cycle lanes than the pavement.

Kevin Gooder

Clinton Avenue


EU spending

Wasted cash

Those who think the EU is a jolly fine institution that works for our benefit, might like to think again.

Last year the EU misspent £5.7 bn of taxpayers money, according to inspected accounts, this was up by 20 per cent on the previous year.

The money was spent on pastures that were forests, farms that did not exist, roads that were not needed as well massive errors in rural development, the environment, fisheries and health.

This is on top of the fact the EU has not had its books 
signed off in 19 years.

Someone must know where the money is going, so why is nobody taken to account over this shameful waste?

It appears to be a case of “carry on regardless”.

Philip Griffiths

North West Chairman UKIP

Town centre roads

Bus hold up

No-one likes change and the new road layout in the centre of Blackpool is certainly taking a bit of getting used to.

At busy times there is a lot of congestion.

Recently I was stuck in a jam all the way down Albert Road.

On reaching Cookson Street, I realised why.

Buses pulling up at a bus stop on Cookson Street were causing the hold-up.

It was mayhem as vehicles stuck behind the buses jostled for position to get into the middle lane and get past.

This is meant to be the main through route and traffic should be free flowing.

It is plain daft to have a bus stop holding everything up.

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