Nottingham failed to live up to its violent reputation in the recent riots, proving we are far better at apathy than anarchy. I can only conclude from this that we’re all pretty happy with our footwear and so it wasn’t worth doing in the windows of JJB Sports. Or perhaps we just have more important things on our minds, like wondering if Steve McLaren will develop a Bulwell accent at his next press conference.
A group of people who weren’t out rioting were Safe and Sounds, a Nottingham-based collective committed to raising awareness, money and support for all those affected by natural disasters. ‘We find it hard to sit back and watch the lives of others – whose shoes we could so easily walk in – get turned upside down by forces beyond their control… and so we decided to do something, and have called upon a spectrum of talent to help.’ You could be part of that talent and score some Pearly Gate points in the process.
After a successful launch party in May – the proceeds of which went to the Japan tsunami relief fund - they have now set their sights on a much bigger venture. And so, on Sunday September 25th they will be holding an all-day, multi-venue event across the city centre, to raise money for the British Red Cross’ Disaster Fund, and six other relevant charities which will be decided by the public. Given the growing frequency of natural disasters, expect many causes desperately fighting over the pennies.
Artists, poets and writers aren’t traditionally the wealthiest of people as they are usually the first to feel the brunt of the cuts. Take BBC Radio 4. The short story in the Afternoon Reading was recently reduced from five days a week to three and now it’s going down to one a week. At this rate we’ll be down to 140 characters next. This is of course the same BBC that introduced the National Short Story Award a few years ago. So if there’s anyone likely to loot for trainers it is those with pen in hand. But the good thing about being skint and unappreciated is it gives you plenty of material to write about which you can then perform for free for noble causes.
The next Safe and Sounds event will be spoken word at Lee Rosy’s Tea Room (Broad Street, Nottingham) starting at 7pm (finish time tbc). Nicola Monaghan (The Killing Jar, Starfishing) will be taking part so it’s also a great opportunity to perform with an established author and local favourite. You can do this by filling out the contact form on their website or by joining their Facebook Group for more information. The woman with the big heart driving this project is Hannah Elizabeth Boylin. Respect.