Remembering the panto

Before Covid19

In February we were in the local pantomime. It was Aladdin. I also painted the scenery including this cutout of a cast member who had gone through a mangle and had to come out flattened. You would think it was easy. But have you tried painting feet from the back as well as the front? I took photos of the front and back of the person but the feet looked odd? I should have placed them like Charlie Chaplin perhaps? I hope life starts to return to normal and we get to do another panto soon! Oh yes I do! Oh no you don’t!

The ideas that influenced Penkhull flag

My idea was the to middle one. As you can see the Cockerel and the oval were strong influences on the final outcome.

This year the flag has already won the Vexillological Flag institute FA Cup of flags and on Tuesday we are in the final of the Flag institute World Series of flags @flaginstitute #WorldSeriesOfFlags (Hope I got the @and # right?) The competition /vote is over on Twitter from 11am. We are up against a lovely place called Tiree.

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Penkhull won the semi final

We won the semi final although someone said our flag looks like a bread wrapper! Now we are in the final next Tuesday against Tiree. I think it looks like a beautiful place, perhaps we will visit one day. However I can’t help hoping Penkhull win.

In my previous post describing the flag I forgot to say the blue colour represents the blue of Spode pottery. This iconic firm closed some time ago, but I have an art studio on the spode site so I feel doubly connected to Penkhulls flag. I will try and find the full description of what it symbolises.

I’m voting Penkhull!

Penkhull flag

Penkhull flag is in the semi-final of the @flaginstitute World Cup of flags today till 11am tomorrow. This is part of the vexillological festival to make up for not having many sporting events this year.

Penkhull was in the doomsday book and was then called Pinchetel. Penkhull means ‘Hill hill’ and is a very steep basalt volcanic plug that sits above the majority of Stoke-on-Trent. It is known as the village in the heart of the city.

The flag was only designed recently. The green represents the village green at the heart of Penkhull, with four roads leading up to it. The Cockerel (also know as a rooster or chicken) sits on top of St Thomas’s Church that is in turn on the green.

The flag was created for a competion run by the residents association to raise community spirit. I’m pleased to say that I partly helped to design it.

So if you would like to join in and vote you can find the vote over on twitter. Look for #penkhullflag #WorldSeriesOfFlags

Thank you. X

Missing Barndances

Next month we would probably have been holding a Barn dance in aid of the Penkhull Mystery play (that didn’t happen in July). We would also have started rehearsals for the Penkhull panto, both events, ( the mystery play and the panto) had big audiences. Now our government has decided to cut the number of people who can live in England down to six both inside and out. No more crowds. Sad….

Late summer sky

Lowering grey clouds above the Croft at Penkhull. We walked around this afternoon exploring the area again. We had climbed up the steep hill and down another steep one on the way back at the end of the walk. The hill we descended has been recently resurfaced. The tarmac was well laid, but the hill is so steep I felt like I was going to slip and fall as the surface was not textured. As we walked down my legs started to shake as I took my weight on my shins. We had only walked for an hour and a half but we called in a shop and had to carry everything down the hill in a rucksack. And am I the only person that washes their shopping when they get it home? Now I’m sitting and relaxing, I need a rest.

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Another walk

Today I was walking up hill and through a local nature reserve. There were also steep steps down which must have been 18 inches deep. I had to grab hold of the handrail and lower myself down each step.

I’ve decided to walk up our steep hill each time we go out for a walk so me and my friend both get a good stretch of our legs and I hope to get the hill over and done with at the start…. Then she decided to drag me up some extra steep bits..

Ooo my ankles hurt! Tomorrow I might be walking to a local park to do some sketching.

Painting scenery

I just chose a random photo from my gallery. It’s a scenery flat for the mystery plays a few years ago. When you are painting on a board eight foot by four foot you don’t need a lot of detail. But I love these iconic bottle ovens, so of course I decided to paint every brick. Plus it means I can give a bit of perspective rather than leaving it flat looking. I also hate when I see scenery and the perspective is wrong. I have seen some that are really weird. It’s distracting (for me anyway). I can spend more time on looking at scenery than at a performance.

A lot of scenery I’ve done for the Mystery plays was painted very quickly. When we have prepared and rehearsed for them the time we can have to use the hall we work in is limited so that we don’t have to spend too much money.

I don’t know what will happen next year? Will there be another one? I don’t know. For me by next summer it could be a real boost to have it on again.

Local drawing

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As I was busy yesterday I missed doing a drawing of something local that was the prompt from stoke urban sketchers. I wanted to do a picture of somewhere a bit further away as my local pottery is not the most exciting image and I’ve already drawn it.

This is Penkhull Church at the top of our hill. It was built in the Victorian era and it is a lovely piece of architecture and centre of the community. It needs some restoration, which has partly been done but as with everything old work needs to continue on it.

If you ever feel like donating I’m sure there is some sort of fund that donations can go to. I don’t know exactly where.

Lots of activities are held there, from services, music festivals and the yearly mystery plays. The local theatre group has held musical evenings there too.

Anyway I might do the next challenge tomorrow. I’m not sure what it will be. Looking forward to it.