The police have issued an avalanche warning to hill-walkers on the Mourne Mountains.
The police are urging hill-walkers and snow-sport enthusiasts to be mindful of severe conditions on the slopes.
As the big thaw sets in after the big snow of recent weeks, police are urging walkers, climbers and skiers to be aware of potentially dangerous conditions, including a real risk of avalanches.
Ian McCracken from the Mourne Mountain Rescue Team gave further detail about the risk of avalanches to mountain users:
“It is more on the westerly slopes. Look for build ups of snow and you can probably see them as you’re driving or walking into some of those areas, you can see where the snow is blowing and it has built up on the upper slopes, so walking either above or below them, could be potentially dangerous.”
My 8 year old’s first words to me on waking this morning were, ‘Mum, what was your favourite song?’ Apparently she enjoyed last night’s Newcastle Glees production of Oliver! as much as I did.
I love going to see local productions. You never know who you’re going to see and you can play Neighbour Bingo; ‘There’s Caitlin from up the street, singing in the front row! And that’s John-Paul in the market scene! And I swear that Mr Brownlow looks like Seamus the electrician -it is! House!’ But a Glee Singers’ show has the added bonus of being an excellent production, so you’re not only going to see who you can see; you’re going for a great story and a great night out.
Oliver! is one of my favourite musicals and the Glee Singers’ version, produced and directed by Gary Warnock, did not disappoint. One of the things I wasn’t expecting to notice was the accompaniment to the songs but the orchestra, directed by Manus O’Boyle, was so wonderful that I couldn’t help but notice.
I can’t imagine how intimidating it must be to stand on stage with great musicians below you and have to sing along, but every performance was a complement to their skill. Oisin Mc Donnagh as Oliver performed every song perfectly and, with him, Brian Devlin as Fagin, and Emma-Jane McKnight as Nancy seemed to have stepped right off London’s West End and onto a stage in Newcastle for the evening.
The set was beautiful and the chorus of actors, choreographed by Pauline McCarthy, put so much into their roles that there was always something to look at; I managed to miss the moment where (spoiler!) Oliver was caught picking someone’s pocket at the market, because I was following the mini-narrative of someone else swapping a bunch of flowers for a stale loaf of bread and realising their mistake. It seems as if, at the Glee Society, everyone is encouraged to take their role as seriously as the lead actors and it makes every aspect of the performance come alive.
I hadn’t seen the stage version of Oliver! before and I can’t remember there being so much humour in the film, but Tony Bannon as Mr Bumble, Carol-Anne McKay as Widow Corney, and Anthony Bannon as Doctor Grimwig, kept the audience in good humour, providing much relief from the tension of the scenes with the villainous Bill Sikes, played by Mairtin Bradley, and poor Nancy.
By the way, my favourite song from Oliver! is Nancy’s ‘Small Pleasures’ and it was a real treat to see it performed so well. My daughter loved everything performed by Chris Poland as the Artful Dodger, and my partner enjoyed Fagin’s ‘Reviewing the Situation’.
I am blaming my head cold for those I haven’t mentioned- there really were no weak performances, and if you love musical theatre then I would highly recommend catching Oliver! which is on again this afternoon and tonight, Saturday 2nd March, the evening of Friday 8th March, and there is a matinee and evening performance on Saturday 9th March. Tickets are available from McCready’s shoe shop.
For six years Newcastle’s Sharing Languages Sharing Cultures programme has been bringing together primary school children from across the area to share their cultures and to learn modern languages.
Shimna Integrated College’s Sharing Languages, Sharing Cultures programme, now in its sixth year, brought together 371 pupils from 16 primary schools in 2012 to learn a range of modern languages. The programme meant that children from non-integrated schools had the opportunity to experience learning in the same classroom
Yet, the award-winning programme is to lose its funding and faces closure within months.
On top of that, figures have been published which show in detail the shocking degree of segregation in the Northern Ireland education system. The Detail news website has revealed that almost half of Northern Ireland’s schoolchildren are being taught in schools where 95% or more of the pupils are of the same religion. Read more…
As part of the process to create the Paralympic Flame, Down District will be welcoming LOCOG’s lighting of a Flame in Newcastle this Wednesday 22 August, with a celebration from 11.30am – 2pm.
The Paralympians are lighting a beacon on top of Slieve Donard and are due to return to Donard Park at approx 12.30pm. It would be great if there was a crowd to cheer them on!
Stilt walkers and stalls have been arranged from 11.30am in Donard Park so there’ should be plenty to keep the children entertained while you wait to welcome these athletes into the park.
Some pics courtesy of Kirsty McComish / NAF.
Congratulations to all the Festival organisers.