Category: Culture

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PART 3

Oxford and Aylesbury: a pilgrimage with Brendan McBear

Chris Humble

Brendan is a bear. He would describe himself as a New Monastic Celt when he’s not too busy taking the mickey out of The Big Eejit or BE – his companion and sometime mentor. His association with Chris Humble began when the Northumbria Community asked Chris to take him on pilgrimage. This is their third […]

Are the media fanning the flames of racial intolerance?

Peter Howarth

Did the media’s description of penalty ‘saves’ at the Euro 2021 football competition as ‘misses’ fan the flames of racial abuse? England lost the shoot-out, and when a loss occurs we English seem to need to have someone to blame. Blaming the England players for not scoring, rather than praising the Italian goalkeeper for his […]

Poetry Corner

The watermelon

Suzanne Fairless-Aitken

When we were young they just went to waste, a bit too exotic for council-estate tastes. From the tropics to the suburbs via Bookless & Co. we loved lifting them up and letting them go, smashing to the ground the sound made us smile, ruby entrails smeared on faces TISWAS style. Sitting on the doorstep […]

Review

Fear Street: a unique take on a horror series

Katie Maughan

Fear Street 1994, Fear Street 1978 and Fear Street 1666 are the movies that make up the newest horror trilogy to hit Netflix. Unlike previous series, the three movies were released at the same time, each part a prequel to the one before it. The series cleverly ties together characters from three different decades to […]

Review

14 dead and nothing said: Uprising review

Ade JBones Van Vliet

Early in the morning of 18 January 1981, flames tore through a three floored combined house party at 439 New Cross Road, South London. 13 young black people lost their lives directly through the fire and the toll rose to 14, when a further party attendee tragically committed suicide, two years later.  Within six weeks […]

Just who are “The People” and who represents them?

Gareth Kearns

Last Wednesday, 21 July 2021, as I Joined with the SODEM team at the regular PMQs protest outside parliament, I was told in unequivocal terms by a Covid-denier that I didn’t represent “The People”. Just what I am to make of that? I’m sorry, “The People”, but I have never made any claim to represent […]

PART 2

Corridor issues: a pilgrimage with Brendan McBear

Chris Humble

Brendan is a bear. He would describe himself as a New Monastic Celt when he’s not too busy taking the mickey out of The Big Eejit or BE – his companion and sometime mentor. His association with Chris Humble began when the Northumbria Community asked Chris to take him on pilgrimage. This is their third […]

Poetry Corner

Zoom

Suzanne Fairless-Aitken

Not the Armitage poem, more a Beckett play, staged in rows like The Muppet Shows. Am in some kind of digital purgatorio – or Waiting Room – as it is known. Pondering background choices: Smart – bookshelves Witty – a pub Serious – black-framed Art Lockdown breach – Barnard Castle. Anything but the spare-room drums. […]

PART 1UPDATED

Consett Corona Photo Project: interview with George Ledger Part 1

Dylan Neri

On 23 March 2020, the Prime Minister delivered a very simple instruction to the British public: “you must stay at home.” Since this dependence day, and the introduction into popular discourse of the word ‘lockdown’, people have adapted to a host of alien measures and customs. Social distancing, mandated isolation, face cloths, PPE, and those […]

PART 2UPDATED

Consett Corona Photo Project: interview with George Ledger Part 2

Dylan Neri

Beautiful photographs I suggest that the photo is absolutely beautiful. The pandemic has had few positive aspects, but one of them certainly is the appreciation for those wonderful workers who built this country up and keep it running each and every day. And this photograph shows the rightful pride key workers should have in what […]

Poetry Corner

Daydream

Kim My Linh Vu

Daydream is the concluding poem in a series of four poems written by international students at INTO Newcastle University Sailing through the endless sky, I saw stars twinkle in daylight. Or did the sun drop its chandelier? Diamonds, were scattered everywhere.   I woke up before dawn, bathing in honey sunshine. I ate ocean breeze […]

Ladyboys of Bangkok at Middlesbrough Theatre

Katie Maughan

The Ladyboys of Bangkok graced Middlesbrough Theatre on 12 July for an exciting night of music and glamour during their Flight of Fantasy 2021 tour. Due to social distancing, the show was split into multiple performances over a few nights. Audiences remained socially distanced and were required to wear masks. It was a different experience […]

Online learning: a view from an international student

Harry Kyaw

I’m an international student at INTO Newcastle University. I study International Foundation in Business and Management course right from my home country Myanmar (Burma). During the pandemic period, schools, universities and colleges were forced to close by law. The transition in delivering education has made the students to study from their home and teachers to […]

Poetry Corner

The colour of dreams

Jude Compson

Dream:White. A room, a cavernous chamber and a corona of towering, milk-white alabaster columns, rising from a carpet of snowy cloud. A white-noise subliminal soundscape, barely-discernible Mahalia Jackson/Enya mix-tape. Such radiance! A just-audible gasp escapes from slumbering lips. It was heaven.   Dream:Blue. Fishing for guppies on the South China Seas. A miniature craft thrown […]

Poetry Corner

Forget-me-not

Jinran Wang

Forget-me-not is the third in a series of four poems written by international students at INTO Newcastle University Every time a forget-me-not blooms A girl would stand on a hillside with a bunch of forget-me-nots Her eyes drifted expectantly through everything From the sunrise until the stars only hope to love the return   Her […]

PART 1

Middle England: a pilgrimage with Brendan McBear

Chris Humble

Brendan is a bear. His association with Chris Humble began when the Northumbria Community asked Chris to take him on his pilgrimage to every Anglican cathedral in England.. Initially Chris wasn’t that keen but soon found that his Celtic charm and ready wit opened doors around the country! Here is Part 1 of a different […]

The unfinished play in South Shields

Peter Lathan

In 2012 I was asked to direct a revival on my first play ever to get a professional outing (on tour in 1975, no less!), a version of The Mysteries, as a community production for the Customs House in South Shields. It featured amateur actors and choir with a professional production team and we performed […]

Taking the knee

Harry Gallagher

These youngmen so heavy with a country’s hope,
legs shredded by the studs of high-footed politicians,
these torchbearers of the truth, their light
shaming the shade of cynics in corners.

Five great summertime films

Phil Coghill

What time is it? Summertime. From romantic dramas to rousing adventure stories, many a film has used the season as a backdrop. Here are five of the best: Les Vacances de Monsieur Hulot (1953) French comedian Jacques Tati directs and stars as the clumsy Hulot (cited by Rowan Atkinson as an influence on his Mr […]

Dear Gareth

Anne Greaves

Dear Gareth, I’m not a fanatical football fan, I got into it fairly heavily during Euro 1996 and afterwards, then gradually lost interest again, partly because of all the money to be honest and then other things just took over. But every time a big competition comes round you find yourself getting interested again, and […]

Poetry Corner

The last poetry

Yiran Qin

The last poetry is the second in a series of four poems written by international students at INTO Newcastle University On an ordinary night Everyone thought I was dead But I wasn’t. My New Year’s wish didn’t come true   My friends keep me My parents cry every day My doctor said that not everyone […]

JournalPART 4

Covid and me: a year of shielding

Peter Lathan

Day 369, Saturday, 6 March, 2021 : A most unwelcome anniversary of shielding    One year to the day since my self-isolation/shielding/incarceration/call it what you will began. Could anyone in early March 2020 have imagined that we would be in a third lockdown a whole twelve months later? Could anyone have conceived what lockdown would mean for […]

Football has come home: my Euro 2020 adventure

Chris Humble

My Euro 2020 adventure – and why football HAS come home… ‘Where it began’, as Neil Diamond croons in the opening lyrics to ‘Sweet Caroline’ – adopted as an anthem by England fans this summer – was back in 2018. The England Supporters Club My mate Andy and I joined the official England Supporters Club, […]

Poetry Corner

Me in your eyes

Yi Yu

Me in your eyes is the first in a series of four poems written by international students at INTO Newcastle University You ask me, What colour is the cloud? Between breathing, clear transparent blue, white and grey. Me in your eyes, What colour is it?   I don’t want to It’s just the grey, yellow […]

Opinion

Football and politics: 1966 and all that

Richard Henson

I read somewhere last week that the England World Cup win led to Harold Wilsons big election win. Really? I thought… so I thought, and thought. 1966: football and politics I was at primary school and on holiday with my parents when the 1966 World Cup was on. This was the Summer holidays, probably late […]

PART 3POEM ON A STRING

Non-Stop

Ursula Troche

My status is settled, or
seems that way, what
a state we are in, to need
a declaration for living
in this state of mind-
– the-gap Britain, mind
you, is that great?

Happy birthday North East Bylines!

Scott Hunter

One shrewd editorial policy at the outset set the tone which was that, while those involved in setting up the project shared an interest in politics, Bylines was interested in everything. No boundaries were set on the scope of its content. As a result, Bylines publishes a range of material much more diverse than any regional newspaper: poetry, international affairs, profiles of local sporting legends, it’s all in there.

Rooting kindness in 2021: the year of the tree

Anya Cook

I have a friend who declares she is apolitical.  She is intelligent, well-read, always learning something, active in community groups and environmental campaigns.  Decisions are made that she does not agree with, yet she still declares she is not political? This outward projection of neutrality doesn’t make sense, or does it?  Neutrality serves only to […]