Forty years later

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It’s forty years since I started my Fine Art degree. I’ve changed a lot in that time but I still paint and enjoy art. I’m trying to make a living at art which isn’t easy, but at least I’m trying.

The world has changed too. 40 years ago we had a female prime minister?! But we didn’t have food banks, we hadn’t had the collapse of the banks we hadn’t had partial privatisation of our health service. But it all started then. Politics is mad. People vote for making things worse for themselves. I think I shall keep calm and carry on painting.

Finding time?

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What a week! I’m in the midst of campaigning in the local elections. I won’t go into details or mention the party I’m standing for. I don’t want to get into a political ramble here.

It’s just been mad. I’ve hardly been home. I haven’t had time to blog. My legs feel like they are about to drop off because I’ve done so much walking. My back is aching from jarring it coming down some steep steps. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I’ve spoken to lots of people and met some really interesting characters. I want to help with their problems and try and make a difference. The only problem is politics has become a real antagonism to some people. With everything going on nationally it is having an effect locally.

So life is busy at the moment. But I hope to try and fit blogging back in again soon.

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Urban murals

Here are two murals in Stoke Town centre (or Stoke-upon-Trent) one of the six towns that make up Stoke-on-Trent.

The market is mostly held inside this building with food stalls including fish and meat. Clothes stalls and all sorts of other merchandise.

Several years ago (almost 40) the old market burnt down. I remember sitting in a friends garden and seeing the plume of black smoke flowing high up into the sky. The cause? An electrical fault. The site was cleared but the local Labour Party fought for it to be rebuilt and a few years later the new market rose on a part of the site near the old market hall. There followed a library and council buildings. Nowadays the market is less busy. More shops are closing in the town. Cuts to local government are affecting the jobs in the town and city. Services have been slashed because of austerity measures bought in after the 2010 general election. The cuts really bit when the local administration went over to a Conservative and independent coalition.

Maybe one day things will improve. In the meantime it’s good to see the vibrant murals on the market building.

Egyptian strawberries

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I don’t want to bother you with politics. But (and there always is one), my country is about to go through Brexit, which is, British exit from the European Union.

We are lucky here, we can get food from around the world, we can afford to buy it, unlike some places that have been exploited and kept down. But for how long?

If we want strawberries from Egypt or other countries we don’t currently struggle to get them. There are pan European trade agreements which allow their movement across the continent. But without them things might find it more difficult. Perhaps they could sail through the Mediterranean around the bay of biscay and up the Channel… By which time they may not be as fresh and that’s without any storms. Or they could come by airfreight but there may be more checks at Borders..

I know its not happened yet but I wish we could see the results of this strange decision and how it will affect us.