Tuesday, February 20, 2018

A glamorous funeral - death of sexism at the BAFTA British Academy Film Awards 2018

I attended the Bafta awards at the weekend in London so here are some of my thoughts on the experience. I have filmed protests for 25 years but the BAFTAS 2018 was easily the most stylish protest I have ever been too.


Red carpet treatment at BAFTA awards 2018

The Royal Albert is a stunning venue and having a massive red carpet up it's huge number of steps really improves upon the experience. I got the pleasure of strutting my stuff on the red carpet which was fun.

Royal Albert Hall
A Glamourous Funeral

Apart from celebrating the movie industry, the night was also a vital platform for women to show solidarity in the face of years of sexual discrimination.  The plan was hatched for women to wear black and this was the majority for the A-Lister actresses.





Willem DaFoe
I spoke with various women in the orbits around the stars (production crew, admin teams etc) about their choice of dress to gauge how the message got disseminated.

Most women I spoke too knew that women were wearing black to push for greater respect and equality since the Hollywood sexual harassment scandal. However some had little idea and one woman told me that she only wore black because she googled what the dress code was for the BAFTAs and thanked the stars that she did.


However amongst the black were some very bright red and blue dresses- so I did wonder why they didn't get the message? Looking around the packed bar, one woman from a marketing company described the event as 'a glamorous funeral'.

Others said they got the message to wear black from Vogue magazine and the sexism issue was a background decision. While they supported the issue they said but it wasn't the over riding decision about why they chose to wear black. Meanwhile everyone was anticipating what the royal visitor would wear. When she arrived Kate Middleton had let the side down by wearing a green dress.

Angelina wore black
Kristin Scott Thomas in Black
Saoirse Una Ronan in Black
Karen Gillan- Limo fun
Margot Robbie zooms by
How are we gonna carry it home?
The night is fun, everyone is dressed to the hilt and a serious message is getting through to the people in power. A direct action group Sisters Uncut stormed the red carpet to make sure that the grassroots message also gets heard. Lying on the red carpet, they linked arms and chanted about the upcoming domestic violence and abuse bill . They call this piece of legislation 'a dangerous distraction'.
They said;
'Instead of refinancing women refuges, reinstating legal aid and providing desperately needed housing for domestic violence survivors, Theresa May continues to turn her back on both survivors and the solutions they need'
Back inside I thought it would be useful to see the men give a show of solidarity with the women, perhaps by wearing bright colours instead of the usual black jackets?

I hung out and observed the melee as I stood beside Gary Oldman (Churchill) and Toby Jones from the Detectorists. Then Angelina Jolie popped up in front of me followed by the entorage of Margot Robbie (I Tonya- brilliant movie btw) and Saoirse Ronan (Lady Bird)

What struck me is something of a cliche i know but most of the A listed actors are really small. I know the movie makers create stars so we all get the image of these tall majestic creatures, but it is quiet something to be surrounded by Hollywood's top stars and be looking down at them.

Anyhow the night was good fun and I then ended up in a limo with Doctor Who and Jumanji star Karen Gillan which was a laugh. She had presented an award for best visual effects to Blade Runner. In introduced her to our mobile solar powered cinema which she got excited about for a party. We then chatted about the after parties and she mentioned that it was usually the Weinstein parties that people went to...but not this year.

Paul O'Connor is a film maker with Undercurrents and projectionist of The Sol Cinema
Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Do you need £4000 for a history of television project?


A Trust can make a grant of up to £4000 towards publishing work on any aspect of the history of television

The Shiers Trust grant, now in its 18th year, is normally worth £2,000. This year, to mark the 90th anniversary of the RTS, it has been raised to £4,000.
Launched in 2000, the Shiers Trust grant is named after George Shiers, a distinguished US TV historian.

The grant has enabled a range of projects, including the digitalisation of back issues of the Radio Times and the creation of a website which presents a collection of historical consumer electronics images.

Applications can be for anything from research to project development, and all projects must make a valuable contribution towards the Trust’s aim of conserving television history.
 More here


Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Why do TV channels expect to have footage for free from independent film makers?

What is it about TV channels that expect to have footage for free from independent film makers?

I have been filming protests for 25 years and sold my footage to dozens of TV channels, blockbuster movie makers and documentaries. Most researchers are respectful and we can negotiate a suitable fee based on broadcast regions, number of transmissions and lenght of time for the licence.


But too many times I have researchers from TV channels trying to get my footage for free. Why?

Does the TV channel staff ask their coffee suppliers to give them free coffee beans? Does their inhouse cafe negotiate free food to feed the video editors and journalists?
I would say the answer is no so why do they think it is Ok for TV people to expect me to give them my work for free?

This week a Polish reporter from a morning TV show “Good Morning TVN Poland” wanted to use my exclusive footage of the controverdsial Mark Lynas putting a cream pie into the face of another author.



She offered me a 'on screen credit', then eventually offered my a measely £100. A quick search found that in 2015, TVN Poland announced their sale of a 52.7% for €584 million. So a Billion pound company won't pay for footage from independent film makers. If I went to their archive and asked for udse of their footage for free, I would be laughed at.

I said no of course and hope the message gets through that we expect to be paid for our work. Perhaps I should have my own cream pies ready for the next one to ask me?









Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Who wants to be trained as a journalist?

Applications now open for Future News Worldwide 2018

Future News Worldwide is a partnership programme between the British Council and some of the world's leading media organisations which identifies, trains and connects the next generation of global journalists.
We’re looking for 100 of the world's most talented, motivated and passionate student journalists to attend an intensive media training programme in the Scottish Parliament, Edinburgh, on 5 – 6 July 2018.
You’ll receive exclusive coaching from the world’s leading editors, broadcasters, writers and reporters, and see how publishers around the world are using technology to find stories and bring them to life like never before.
More here

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Herbal gathering cancels event because of hair style

Are people taking things to extremes?

The Leeds Radical Herbalism Gathering which was due to take place this weekend on 17th & 18th February has been cancelled. The reason is because they didn't approve of two peoples hair styles.
A statement on their website states they cancelled because they couldn't handle all the responses to the banning of of two men because of their hair style. They wrote;
'We..simply do not have the capacity to finish organising the gathering whilst dealing with certain responses to our decision to decline two workshop facilitators who are white and have dreadlocks. '
The decision wasn’t supported by all the organisers but a consensus was reached it stated. The statement continued implying that people with white skin and dreadlocks are supporting white supremecy.
Is this model supporting white supremecy?
'White people being outraged at being asked to not lead a space and failing to see how this would affect people of colour is a prime example of how white supremacy plays out in our lives...
'What has come out of this process is that these conversations really need to be had... How can we decolonise the culture of herbalism?'
Comments to the decision are coming in thick and fast on Facebook with many claiming that Dreadlocks have been around for a long time in Britain. Activist Helen wrote;

Short back and sides for you m'lad
'Several Roman writers talk about Celts with what used to be called "elf-locks", to be fair they were probably different from dreadlocks in the way they were made and also I guess most white people wearing locks today are influenced by Rastafari rather than prehistoric hairstyles.'

Jon commented about Rasta culture claiming
'is only a 20th century concept, let's not forget- bases its haircare activities on a literal interpretation of a bible passage about not using a comb or cutting the hair.'
Is this cultural extremism leading to a sticky end?  Helen commented
That is very, very scary - it sounds really right wing in a deeply frightening cultural purity way. Many of us are a right muddle of ethnic backgrounds (I am Welsh, Polish/Russian (they kept muddling their borders and moving about, with some Swedish), my daughter has Italian and Jewish to add to this....I have long been suspicious of the autocracy that a safer spaces policy can become, but this actually frightening.

Zoe, a long term environmental activst wrote;
'when things feel badly out of control, sometimes people feel the need to exert whatever sort of control they can..however ridiculous the excuses and however damaging the outcome of their acts may be'
Prof Alice Roberts in her BBC documentary  What makes us Human points towards Culture being a significant thing in our evolution. So what happens when people saying that we can not share culture?
Fredrik deBoer writes a good insight on his blog;
Doesn’t a world without cultural appropriation look exactly the same as a world envisioned by white supremacists and other ultra-nationalist groups, who decry cross-cultural influence as “contamination”? How is the vision of a world without cultural appropriation meaningfully different in its conclusions than the Volkisch movement that preached cultural purity and which inspired the Nazi movement? Didn’t social liberals and leftists fight for decades precisely for the concept that other cultures have value which we should respect and emulate? How can you simultaneously pursue a world of diversity while policing strict and harshly limiting cultural borders?
Creating a better and more inclusive World has to mean stopping the fundamentalists getting into power.  If organisers are cancelling events about promoting Rosemary and Thyme because of a persons hairstyle choice,  we should be worried about what comes next.  Ban all non-Indian people from Yoga? Stop anyone making their own Hummus? How about stopping people learning foreign languages?

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Anyone need a solar powered mobile cinema for your event?

Sol Cinema being filmed for an advert
I am currently promoting my mobile cinema to get event bookings for 2018. 
If you know anyone who needs a solar powered cinema, put them in touch.
I manage the Sol Cinema-an interactive vintage picture house performance. 
Audiences are encouraged to engage with our performers and are rewarded with 
a short inspiring short movie. 


We are the World's Smallest Solar Powered Cinemahttp://thesolcinema.org

*Delivery of a vintage style cinema powered entirely by renewable energy,
*Smartly dressed performers including an usher and usherette
*Red Carpet
*Free packaged popcorn for all young audience members
*Public liability insurance of £5m
*High resolution photographs of the Sol Cinema for media publicity
*Solar panel display
*Social media promotion via Sol Cinema Twitter and Facebook

Our full house is 8 adults or 10 young people.The Sol cinema is designed
for short videos of 5 minutes which allows a regular turnover of
audiences. Through acting and performance, our skilled crew have the
abilities to attract a wide range of audiences.

Physical space
Operational space we ideally need 5m length x 7m depth

Photos and video of the Sol Cinema can be seen on our website
http://www.thesolcinema.org/


British love to queue

Always a full house in the Sol Cinema

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Friday, February 09, 2018

Aeromexico is managed by Basil Fawlty

I am currently experiencing the Mexican version of Fawlty towers.

On 10th January 2018 at 11.25pm I boarded an aeromexico flight AM7 from Mexico city to Heathrow. After sitting on the plane for an hour, we were told that the plane had problems with the brakes so they had to cancel the flight and we could board another but at 4am the next day.

So I and the full load of passengers were dumped back into the airport to wait for hours. After much fracas we finally managed to persuade them to give us food and water.

Eventually we boarded the new plane at 4am and then sat sit for nearly an hour before lift off. I was handed a photocopied version of The Times to occupy me- I have no idea why the airline thought they had to photocopy an entire newspaper.

Foodline in Mexico airport
No brakes
Photocopied Times

Some people found a bed


So landing in Heathrow was all fine until I went to get my luggage. After an hour I discovered that they had left my luggage in Mexico. So I was back in UK in sub zero  weather and my warm clothes were still in Mexico. I had to get across the entire country to Wales on a coach with no warm clothes.





For forgetting my bag, they gave me a voucher for $100 which I was told would be paid into my bank account as compensation. One month later the money hasn't arrived. I phoned their customer services and was told it is not compensation but actually a voucher for $100 off my next flight. But only valid for a year. Very bloody cheeky.
But at least my bag did arrive home a few days later.


So I got home and tapped out a complaint on January 12 asking for compensation for my delayed flight. Today is February 9th and I finally got this reply




Dear Mr./Mrs. O'Connor,

Thank you for contacting us. We Hope your concern was addressed well by our executives. Your Case has now been closed in our system.

Case Number : 00212339

Aeromexico thanks you for your preference.

Note: For any other inquiry please send a new email to us.

Sincerely,
Customer Relations Center.

WTF? They hadn't  responded to my complaint at all and now this!
So I replied again pointing this out and got this laughable response


Dear Mr./Mrs. O'Connor,

Thank you for contacting us. Currently we only support Spanish, English, French and Portuguese languages, so please write us back in one of them.

We apologize for the inconvenience caused.

Aeromexico thanks you for your preference.

Sincerely,
Customer Relations Center





So Basil Fawlty is running an airline now. I don't know what to do next. Any suggestions welcomed!


Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Thursday, December 07, 2017

24 years ago today - a Tree stood against the massive Tory road builders



This day 24 years ago a 250 year old Sweet Chestnut tree was the focus of the anti-road building protests. £500,000 was spent to cut it down in Wanstead, East London to make way for the M11 Link road in 1993.

The tree became a strong symbol of resistance and also launched undercurrents as an alternative news service.

This is the film we made about the campaign
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U1kQ1ND5Q8Q&t=4s

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Thursday, October 26, 2017

Ben Law Introduces Roundwood Timber Framing



This is a film i made a few years ago. Wonderful way of building using only wood

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Learn about fracking


Saturday 28th October  7.30pm – Unite Against Fracking Conference 
At Bridge Street Church, Leeds

Then the next day you have...
Sunday 29th October  – Reclaim the Power Gathering
Bridge Street Church, Leeds




Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Monday, October 09, 2017

How much does it cost to use a clip from a TED talk in my film?

I wanted to use a 20second clip from a TED talk for a film i am making at the moment. It was a way to introduce one of our interviewees.

After very slip-streamed process of being passed around various TED departments I finally spoke to the person who makes the decisions.

So I discovered that using a clip for a noncommercial film for online use only it costs

$1000 for 2 years
$3000 for all time



So..i think i will find another way. I love TED talks and all that but I can think of better ways to spend $3k on the film

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Sunday, October 08, 2017

Fracking- filming the battle to stop this industry

I am currently editing a film about the resistance to the Fracking industry in the UK. The film will be released in November 2017 so watch this space.

Meanwhile here are some photos of me filming on the frontline

A massive UK wide Police force drafted into stop the protests

Filmng Caroline Lucas MP

Private security firm of the fracking industry

Filming private security firm tackling the public on a public road

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Protester hands Theresa May a P45 during conference speech (04Oct17)




Funniest action at Tory conference

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Tuesday, October 03, 2017

Fire Brigade used to break up Fracking protest in North Yorkshire

On the 2nd October 2017, North Yorskire Fire Service were called in by Police to remove an environmental protester at the Fracking site at Kirby Misperton.

This prompted a spokesman from the Fire Bridage Union to declare it a 'nuisance call by the Police'
Steve Howley, secretary of the FBU in North Yorkshire, said:
'It is extremely disappointing that Police got our service involved and diverted vital resources away. If a genuine call had come in they would not have been able to attend.'

Steve who was arrested while Live streaming from the tower
Photo by Sue Gough

A man who was Livestreaming the protest was removed from a scaffolding tower by the Fire Brigade on Habton Road, Kirby Misperton. North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service attended with an aerial ladder platform, and police officers with specialist training removed him. This viewing platform was all of 7 feet high and located on the verge at the side of the road. After a 2hour operation,the Police subsequently arrested the man who was live streaming and charged him with obstruction of a police officer.

Video footage is here https://www.facebook.com/eddiethornton/v...


The FBU members voted No to Fracking and have also made a strongly worded statement on Climate Change. Police in Lancashire tried to involve the Lancashire Fire brigade to get people down off the towers at the Fracking site at Preson New Road but the Lancashire fire brigade refused.

Steve Howley, secretary of the FBU in North Yorkshire, released a statement:
In terms of the Fire service involvement I am disgusted and disappointed Firefighters have been placed in such a position by the Police and secondly senior fire service managers by their decisions to force Firefighters to attend the site yesterday. We are clear this is not the role of the Fire Service, as we are there to render humanitarian services and save life and property , not provide law and order intervention.
Once I became aware of the situation I raised the issue last night with the Assistant Chief Fire Officer and he assured me he would be speaking with his counterpart within North Yorkshire Police today to suggest that the Fire Service cannot be used in such a way again.
We will await confirmation of this before the North Yorkshire FBU decide if we need to take further measures to prevent our members being unwantedly exposed to such situations again in the future.

He asked people to send email of concerns and question why the service is being allowed to take a clear political stance by becoming involved in what is a lawful peaceful protest via the following link https://www.northyorksfire.gov.uk/co…/complaints-compliments

'Climate change is a critical issue for the Fire and Rescue Service in the UK. It is the greatest environmental challange facing humanity at present'
https://www.fbu.org.uk/publication/climate-change-key-issues-fire-and-rescue-service

There are very few examples of Fire Brigade being used as a political tool to break up protests.  Why this has occured will be under intense scrutiny.
Police in Fire engine crane


Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

How do Police define what a Protest is?





What is a protest?
Is it standing mute on the far side of the road with a placard?
or is it being an obstruction to stop the thing you object to from happening?

I tried to ask a Police officer

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Is Corbyn a Marxist?

This answers the question on where Corbyn stands on various issues very well. It was posted on Reddit.com by gamas a Labour Member

If we intend to have a proper discussion on this, it depends on what we mean by Marxism.
If by Marxist, we mean he supports Marx's ideas that:
  • Capitalism leads to the alienation of groups of people
  • That, under capitalism, segments of society exploit other segments of society
  • That capitalism cannot maintain the living standards of the population
  • That industry should move towards co-operative ownership
  • That the country should focus more on what satisfy human needs rather than on private profits.
Then yes, Corbyn is a Marxist, as is Liz Kendall, as is Yvette Cooper, as is Andy Burnham, as is over half the Labour party.
(Of course, classical Marxism also advocates the idea that socialism is inevitable and that the proletariat will rise up in revolution. I have omitted this because a) We can all agree Corbyn isn't trying to be a revolutionary and b) Marx suggested this before universal suffrage became a thing, and he believed that as the upper classes controlled the government, there was no hope the governments would look after the working-class. Later in his life, he rescinded this view, noting how society had changed towards universal suffrage and came round to the belief that socialism could come about through democratic reform)
Now if you mean Leninism/Marxism-Leninism (i.e. the political ideology that the Soviet Union said is the only legitimate development of Marxism), then that depends on the particular aspect. If we take the social aspects of:
  • Support for a universal social welfare system.
  • Improving public education and health systems
  • Provision of child care
  • Provision of benefits
  • Ending the exploitation of women
Then Corbyn supports those as does the entire Labour party and some members of the Tory party... If we mean the social aspects of
  • abolition of private property
  • The use of propaganda to teach people to abide by the ideals of communism
Then he does not support these.
If we take the economic aspect of Marxism-Leninism that:
  • Market forces should be replaced with scientific planning
  • That the value of a good or service should be determined by its use value
  • That wages should be set according to the skill and intensity of the work
  • That all industry should be under state ownership.
Then Corbyn couldn't be any further from this. As far as I am aware he has never advocated a change in the way that goods should valued or wages set. And although he believe natural monopolies and major infrastructure should come under public ownership, he seems to support the idea that private businesses and corporations should be allowed to exist.
If we take the political aspect of Marxism-Leninism that
  • The state should be controlled by a single-party of Marxism-Leninism principles
  • The use of a vanguard party to establish a dictatorship of the proletariat
Then Corbyn absolutely does not support this. If anything, he supports further reform to allow more parties to have influence.
tl;dr Discussions on whether someone is or isn't a Marxist are complicated by the fact that Marxism is an incredibly broad church of beliefs ranging from the very fringes of the far left, to aspects of the One Nation Conservative vision. Ultimately, its meaningless to call someone a Marxist in the 21st century as all being Marxist means is that you think capitalism leads to a significant chunk of people being worse off and that something should be done about it.
EDIT: I think the revolutionary aspect of Marx's original philosophy is something that is overstressed not only by opponents wishing to denigrate socialism, but by left-wing nutjobs who wish to justify their desire for violence, in both cases missing the historical context in which Marx uttered those words. You have to remember, at the time Marx came up with the Communist Manifesto, the majority of Europe was either an absolute monarchy or, at best, ran democracies that heavily weighted in favour of votes by landed gentry (hell up until 1948, property owners effectively got two votes in the UK). At the time, it would have been inconceivable that a government would move towards helping those who are living on the bottom rung of society as they didn't depend on the working class to remain in power. Therefore, to Marx, revolution would have been the only option. 24 years after publishing the Communist Manifesto, Marx admitted that in developed countries "labour may attain its goal by peaceful means", suggesting he had stood down from the idea that revolution was necessary.



Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Now you see it and now you don't- how history disappears

How do you tell history on TV if footage of events gets deleted?

In July 2017 a Sky News reporter tried to explain how environmental activists are using home made metal arm tubes to 'lock on' in order to blockade the gates of a Fracking site.

As the Sky reporter (former BBC reporter Mike McCarthy) displayed a 'lock on' tube infront of his broadcast cameraman, Police surrounded him and took the lock on away claiming the reporter was actually a protester.

Despite showing his official Press card and his broadcast van full of equipment, the dull cops still refused to give the lock on tube back so he could finish his report.

But luckily the Sky new cameraman filmed it all. However when i asked for a copy of the footage to use in my documentary, I was told by Andrew Wilson, the Sky News cameraman

'Unfortunately Sky didn't keep the rushes of the shoot. 
Some they do keep some they don't think it's important enough. 
Sorry library make those secessions.'
 
So that is how history will be told. The 10 seconds which was broadcast is all that will be stored for future story tellers. That is why it is so important for independent film makers to keep their own archives. Read my last report on this story.


Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Windows of Tescos are smashed in by a man



Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Monday, July 31, 2017

My video report from Fracking protest near Blackpool

A van containing a woman and a one-tonne barrel ‘lock on’ has blocked the entrance to Cuadrilla’s controversial fracking site on Preston New Road this morning. The women is locked to a huge lock on device inside the van as part of an action which closes a month of action by national direct action group, Reclaim the Power.


Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Sunday, July 23, 2017

My appearance on Sky News Today

Editing my daily video reports on Fracking protests
My footage used on Sky News
Sky News reporter harrassed by cops
I appear on Sky News today- i was filmed whilst editing my daily reports of the Fracking Protests in Lancashire. A Sky News reporter was surrounded by over eager cops for displaying what a Lock-on tube is.

Watch the report here
http://news.sky.com/story/rolling-resistance-leads-to-clashes-at-lancashire-fracking-site-10958278

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Security guard locks-on with Fracking activists




 I have been filming in Lancashire all week on the month long daily protests against Fracking. This is one of my reports

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Monday, July 17, 2017

Levitation of Swansea's Palace Theatre


 I filmed the attempted Levitation of Swansea's iconic Palace Theatre yesterday.



Originally built in 1888 as a traditional music hall,
the building's original name was the 'Pavilion'. During its lifetime,
the building has been used as a bingo hall as well as a gay nightclub.


The Grade II Listed building is one of just two purpose-built music halls left standing in the whole of the UK.[2]


In the early years of the 20th century stars like Charlie Chaplin, Lilly Langtry, Marie Lloyd and Dan Leno filled the venue.


Sir Anthony Hopkins made his first professional stage appearance there in 1960 with Swansea Little Theatre's production of 'Have A Cigarette'.[3]


Also in the early 1960s, Morecambe and Wise were booked. Ken Dodd was the last stand-up comedian to appear there before it became nightclub in the 1970s.


It was also the first place in Wales to show a silent picture and remained undamaged by the blitz that destroyed much of Swansea city centre during the Second World War.



Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Performing with Sol Cinema - my solar powered picture house


I have been in Liverpool working with Sol Cinema - my solar powered cinema at the weekend. We had a brilliant reception from the public and the Liverpool Echo took this photo
Find out more on http://www.thesolcinema.org/

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions. http://www.undercurrents.org

Thursday, July 06, 2017

Globalization and the Media- Tories and the BBC






If you ever needed evidence that BBC has bias towards the Tories, check this out


A number of high-profile BBC journalists have made the leap into
Conservative politics, including Craig Oliver, David Cameron’s
ex-director of communications, who was a former editor of the News at
Ten, and Thea Rogers, a BBC producer for the political editor, who
became George Osborne’s chief of staff.

Theresa May just
persuaded a BBC journalist for 23 years to switch from BBC to take her
top job in No 10 communications. Robbie Gibb, who heads the BBC’s
operations at Westminster now works for May.


Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Women4Oceans networking gathering London



 I filmed this inagural meeting of Women 4Oceans in London. Produced by Zoe Broughton the film shows the exciting networking capabilities of women who want to save the Oceans



 Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Solar Farm on Gower July 2017




People are investing in this Solar farm rather than trusting the banks for a yearly interest.

Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Lost In London - Official Trailer



Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Monday, June 26, 2017

Theresa May and the Holy Grail



Leave it to the comedians to show us the reality of political life


Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Adam Curtis - The Rise and Fall of the TV Journalist



Undercurrents is an award winning alternative news service producing videos of people taking inspiring actions.http://www.undercurrents.org

Thursday, June 08, 2017

Captain Ska perform Liar Liar outside BBC HQ





 Filmed by Undercurrents.org

Wednesday 31 May 2017
What: Captain Ska & People's Assembly protest & party outside BBC Chart Show
When: Friday 2 June 2017, 4pm - 7pm
Where: BBC Broadcasting Hose, Portland Place, London W1A 1AA

Captain Ska's track, accusing Theresa May of being a "Liar Liar" has stormed to the top of the charts - but the radio broadcasters are refusing to play it. The song reached number 4.

The track's promoters, the People's Assembly Against Austerity, and Captain Ska have called for a "protest and party" outside the BBC headquarters as the Radio One Chart Show is aired to demand the track is played. On the facebook event page they stated "If they wont play it on the airways we'll blast the song to the public ourselves!"

Earlier in the week the song hit No.10 on the Big Top 40 download charts but radio stations refused to play the song. Since then the song has hit No.1 in the iTunes download charts

BBC Radio One has said "...our editorial guidelines require us to remain impartial and the UK is currently in an election period so we will not be playing the song"

Sam Fairbairn, People's Assembly national secretary, said "The BBC has been anything but impartial throughout the election campaign with a constant bias in favour of the Conservatives. We believe true public opinion should be heard. The popularity of this song shows people are fed up with Theresa May's lies and a Government who's cut, privatised and attacked the poorest and most vulnerable people for too long now."

Jake Painter, band member and songwriter, said "We're overwhelmed by public support and how news of this track has spread globally from the New York Times to the Australian media and everywhere in-between. The fact we, as an unsigned band, had to rely on the People's Assembly to operate as a label and have managed to get this far is a damning indication of how unpolitical the music industry has become. To have the BBC and other broadcasters censor our song is effectively saying that people can't express their political views through popular culture."

Captain Ska's "Liar Liar GE2017" is a scathing attack on the Conservative's record in office, attacking the Tories over food banks, the NHS crisis, education funding crisis and a drop in living standards.

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