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 Just got back from a weekend at Mum and Dad's in Essex. I was looking through some of my old books and was struck by the following passages from Knights of the Cardboard Castle, published in 1965, a Red Dragon book ("for boys and girls (8-12 years)") by Elisabeth Beresford, creator of the Wombles. Dickie...

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Scene and Heard

04 July 2009

Theatre is close to my heart as I run OVO, a theatre company in St Albans.  Scene and Heard is a theatre company comprised of children from Somers Town, recently made famous in a 2008 film of the same name, who write plays which are performed by professional actors for four nights.  Emily Watson, Bill...

My husband was invited into our toddler's nursery last week to "demonstrate ICT to the children" - it was a Father's Day initiative. He said he wasn't really sure what to do, but in the end he made a slideshow of some pictures he'd taken - bus, apples, boats etc - and showed that to the children, who...

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Proud dad

25 June 2009

So the firstborn son has finally got his degree results - and it's first class honours with distinction. After a brief glow of parental pride, I've started planning to swap names by deedpoll and become my son's son, while he can be his dad's dad.  My memories of parenting are sporadic: riding on my...

Rousseau, the French philosopher and champion of liberty was hunted and pursued from one place to another because of his opinions. When Voltaire, another philosopher and writer heard of it, he invited Rousseau to come and live in his house. When Rousseau finally arrived, Voltaire said, "I do not agree...

Private Eye ran a story on the law lords ruling last week, on a 17 year old being chucked out of his home, who then spent months staying on friends' sofas, sleeping in cars and washing his clothes wherever he could.  Baroness Hale of Richmond said that the "child" was in need, as Southwark Homeless Persons...

Yesterday I was in parliament for the Conservative Party Children and Young People’s Summit.  The great and the good of the sector were there, which is a fair indication that people are now taking the prospect of an imminent Tory Government seriously.  Michael Gove and Tim Loughton were impressive, showing...

A colleague attended Gordon Brown's address in Stratford yesterday.  A group of young people, as you probably saw on the news, were waiting to greet him outside Stratford Town Hall and were then ushered in quickly to take reserved seats on the front row, so that their expectant faces gazing up at the...

Amindst the chaos of the past few days in Westminster, we now know that Ed Balls will remain as Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families.  Only two years after its creation, the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills is no more, with its constituent parts returning from whence...

I'm very disappointed by the loss of Beverley Hughes MP from the Cabinet.  In her capacity as Minister for Children, Young People and Families, Changemakers had a great relationship with Beverley. The last four years have been a welcome period of stability in the children and youth sector, and the ten...