Monthly Archives

November 2017

Gary Barlow Brings 2018 UK Tour To Scarborough Open Air Theatre

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Gary Barlow is bringing his solo UK tour to Scarborough Open Air Theatre on Friday June 22nd 2018.

Tickets go on sale at 9am Friday November 24th via www.ticketmaster.co.uk

The tour – which kicks off in Edinburgh in April – will see Gary play venues across the UK and Ireland including some never visited before.

This will be Gary’s first visit to Scarborough OAT – Europe’s largest open-air theatre – but the Yorkshire coast resort already holds a special place in the multi-award-winning star’s heart.

He played Scarborough’s Futurist Theatre with Take That as part of the legendary Take That And Party Tour in 1992 – which catapulted the band to superstar status – and he returned to the same venue as a solo artist in 2013.

Most recently Gary, with friend Tim Firth, penned the song Scarborough for their West End musical comedy The Girls which is based on the famous story of Yorkshire’s WI ‘Calendar Girls’.

Gary last toured as a solo artist in 2014 to great acclaim from fans and critics alike, playing some of the biggest venues he had ever played including The O2 London, Birmingham LG Arena, Glasgow The SSE Hydro and Manchester Arena.

His show at Scarborough OAT in 2018 is presented by promoters Cuffe and Taylor. Director Peter Taylor said: “This is going to be a great night at this wonderful venue and will undoubtedly one of the highlights of the summer.

 “Gary’s shows are always incredible events. His solo tours sell out very quickly so we expect demand for tickets to be massive and we would advise fans to get in early!”

Gary Barlow is a British singer-songwriter and record producer who found worldwide fame as a member of British pop group Take That. Since forming in 1989 Take That have won eight BRIT awards, sold over 45 million records and over eight million concert tickets.

Gary is one of Britain’s most successful songwriters, having written 14 Number One singles as well as being a six-time recipient of an Ivor Novello Award.  Aside from his achievements with Take That, he has also co-written and produced music for other renowned artists including Dame Shirley Bassey, Sir Elton John and Robbie Williams.

Gary’s last solo record ‘Since I Saw You Last’ sold more than 600,000 copies and was the ninth biggest selling album that year.  In more recent years, Gary has also turned his attention to the world of theatre, composing the score for the hugely successful production ‘Finding Neverland’, working alongside screenwriter Tim Firth to write the music and lyrics for musical ’The Girls’ and also working alongside his Take That band mates to produce ‘The Band’ a record breaking musical featuring the music of Take That.

Tickets for Gary Barlow’s show at Scarborough OAT go on sale at 9am Friday November 24th. They are available from www.ticketmaster.co.uk (0844 844 0444) and www.scarboroughopenairtheatre.com or in person from Scarborough Open Air Theatre Box Office (01723 818111) and the Discover Yorkshire Coast Tourism Bureau (01723 383636).

ALFIE BOE ANNOUNCES FLEETWOOD HOMECOMING CONCERT

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International singing star Alfie Boe is to return to his hometown for a special one-off concert.

Homecoming will be the biggest concert Fleetwood has ever hosted and will take place at Fleetwood Town FC’s Highbury Stadium on Saturday June 2.

And in a nod to Alfie’s roots, £2 from every ticket sold will be donated to the Fylde Coast’s Trinity Hospice, where Alfie is a patron.

Tickets to Homecoming go on sale at 9am Friday November 24 from www.ticketmaster.co.uk

Residents of Fleetwood and wider Wyre will be able to access an exclusive pre-sale on Wednesday November 22 by registering at cuffeandtaylor.com/events/alfieboe

Speaking about the concert Alfie said: “Being Fleetwood born and bred and a fully-fledged member of the Cod Army it’s an honour and a privilege to be performing back in my home town and at my team’s home ground.

“I hold Fleetwood close to my heart and I’m so happy to be coming back to entertain family and friends.”

The UK’s most beloved tenor was celebrated in his hometown earlier this year as part of BBC Music Day when a plaque was unveiled at Marine Hall – the theatre where he made his stage debut at the age of 14 in 1987. Alfie joined the likes of John Lennon, Paul McCartney, David Bowie and George Michael to be honoured in this way recognising pioneering musicians around the UK.

Since that first appearance in Fleetwood 30 years ago, Alfie’s unmistakable voice has cemented him as Britain’s biggest selling and best loved vocalist of his generation.

A hugely successful recording artist, he has conquered the world’s greatest stages and arenas. As accomplished in leading the cast of Les Misérables as Valjean in both the West End and Broadway, to stealing the show at this year’s BBC 100th Anniversary special to mark the Battle of Passchendaele, or taking the lead role of Jimmy, alongside Pete Townsend and Billy Idol, in The Who’s ‘Classic Quadrophenia”.

Homecoming is presented by North West live music promoters Cuffe and Taylor who have taken the decision to donate money from every ticket sold to the Fylde Coast’s Trinity Hospice.

Head of Fundraising Linzi Young said: “This is quite incredible news for the Hospice. Our friends at Cuffe and Taylor are long standing supporters through their local events and the annual Lytham Festival. Their generosity in allowing us to benefit from this very special concert means so much to us and the money raised will help pay for patient care, not just in the hospice but across the entire Fylde Coast community.

“And what can we say about Alfie Boe? He has been our Patron for five years and has helped us launch various fundraising campaigns, has sent videos of support for events such as our annual Ball, and has also sent private messages to some of our patients and their families facing very difficult circumstances. He is a man with a big heart, as well as a big voice. His global fan base is a window on the world for us; fans from across all continents get involved and send donations to Trinity in his name. We feel very privileged indeed to have the support of Alfie and his team.”

Tickets to Alfie Boe Homecoming are available from £30 and go on sale at 9am Friday November 24 from www.ticketmaster.co.uk

Residents of Fleetwood and wider Wyre will be able to access an exclusive pre-sale on Wednesday November 22 by registering at cuffeandtaylor.com/events/alfieboe

Children’s Hospice To Receive Boost From Lancashire CC Skipper’s Testimonial

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Fylde coast children’s hospice Brian House and the Professional Cricketers Association’s Benevolent Fund were today named as Lancashire Cricket Club captain Steven Croft’s charity partners for his forthcoming Testimonial Year.

Steven – who in 2011 went down in Red Rose cricket folklore when he hit the winning runs to seal Lancashire’s first County Championship title in 77 years – has played more than 450 times for his county since making his debut in 2005.

Old Trafford announced last month their captain would receive a Testimonial Year in 2018 in recognition of his services to Lancashire. Steven, 33, said he was “humbled” by the honour.

The Blackpool-born all-rounder will be holding a series of events throughout next year with both charities benefitting from funds raised.

To unveil his charity partners, Steven and his family joined members of his Testimonial Year Committee and guests at Blackpool-based Brian House Children’s Hospice where they met staff and some of the seriously ill children who receive vital care there.

Steven, who is now a patron of Brian House, said: “I’m a proud Blackpool lad, it’s where my cricket career began, and so it was really important for me to choose a charity which means so much to my hometown.

“As I live locally I was aware of the fantastic work Brian House does for seriously ill children, many with life limiting conditions, as well as the essential respite care they offer families.

“But it was not until I visited the hospice that I fully understood the vital role it plays for so many people. I was really moved by the wonderful nursing staff and volunteers, and by the work they do, and so it was an easy decision for me to support this fantastic organisation in any way I can throughout my testimonial year and beyond as a proud patron.”

Brian House, which is in Bispham, was opened 21 years ago by Trinity Hospice. It costs more than £1.2m a year to run, which means the hospice must rely on fund-raising and public donations.

Steven added: “I’m a parent myself, with a young daughter, and it’s heartening to know facilities like Brian House are here to help those children and families who are living with some devastating medical conditions.

“But it is only made possible through donations from the public so hopefully, throughout my testimonial year, we will not only help raise awareness of the charity but some much-needed funding for them.”

David Houston, chief executive of Trinity Hospice and Brian House said: “We are delighted Steven has become a patron of Brian House. He is such a lovely guy and we are very excited he has decided to make Brian House one of his charity partners for his testimonial year.

“We only survive through the support we get from the public and kind-hearted organisations, so having Steven on board is fantastic. It was great to meet him and his wonderful family and we look forward to working together throughout 2018 and beyond.”

The Professional Cricketers’ Association’s Benevolent Fund helps former and current players and their families in times of hardship and gives assistance to help readjust to the world outside of the game.

Steven explained: “The Benevolent Fund is vital. Cricket, like all sports, is an unpredicatble career which could end at any moment. I have been very fortunate to have enjoyed a career into my 30s. Others are not so lucky.

“The fund really helps players, who can be forced to give up the game through injury and illness, as well as their families. Re-adjusting to life outside the game is so tough for so many players and, given the fantastic support the charity and the PCA offers so many people, it was a no brainer for me to suppport them.”

Ian Thomas, Director of Development at Welfare at the PCA, said “It is always appreciated when a player supports the PCA Benevolent Fund as one of their adopted charities for a Testimonial Year.  The charity is there to support players and family members of current and former professional cricketers by providing specialist advice, care or assistance.

“We are extremely grateful to Steven. He has been a great servant to the professional game and we wish every success for the year ahead, on and off the field.”

Further details of Steven’s Testimonial Year events will be announced shortly.

If you are interested in sponsoring the Testimonial Year, or have any enquiries, you can contact the organisers via StevenCroftTestimonial2018@gmail.com

Leading Trainers Have Northern Lights Finals Day In Their Sights

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Leading trainers have targeted some of their top prospects for a trip to Carlisle and a crack at the £125,000 finals day of a new race series.

Qualifying races for the British Horseracing Authority (BHA) Northern Lights Series end this coming Wednesday (November 22) – but plenty of fancied runners have already bagged their place for finals day on Sunday December 3.

Micky Hammond, Lucinda Russell, Iain Jardine, Donald McCain, Tim Easterby and James Moffatt all have horses qualified.

Each final at Carlisle carries prize money of £25,000 and is the culmination of many months of qualifying series held exclusively at northern racecourses.

And with qualifiers still to go at Wetherby and Hexham there’s still time for late contenders to book their place at what is sure to be a showpiece event in Cumbria.

Grand National-winning trainer Lucinda Russell currently has seven horses qualified for finals day at Carlisle. Asked about the Northern Lights Series, Russell said: “We always had our eye on it and I think it’s fantastic for the mid-range horses. I think what’s great with the Northern Lights is it gives those horses a chance.

“It’s very good for the horses that are improving, moving up the ratings.”

Russell’s six-year-old middle-distance qualifier, Forest Des Aigles, has been targeted at finals day with the full support of his owner.

The trainer added: “He’s owned by Ray Anderson Green and Ray is a huge supporter of these kind of initiatives. He asked us to aim the horse at the race, so it’s been a good plan.

“We’ve chosen the actual races and I think he’s only raced in qualifiers. He won at Hexham early last month when we had him aimed for the November Ayr qualifier but he came to hand so quickly that we ran him earlier.”

Forest des Aigles, was ridden to the winning post at Hexham by Grand National winning jockey Derek Fox. And he reckons the second season chaser is one to watch in the middle-distance final.

Fox said: “He’s a horse to look for now and in the future, he’s progressing. He handles well, jumps well and is straight forward with a nice attitude.”

Another from the Russell yard likely to be in the running at Carlisle is Alizee de Janeiro, a recent third over two miles at Kelso.

Fox added: “For Carlisle, you want a horse that’s tough. There’s always going to be some cut in the ground and it’s the stiffest of finishes with that three-and-a-half-miles and a long uphill finish.

“It’s a nice track at the same time. The fences at Carlisle are very nice, they ride very well. You can get into a really good rhythm of jumping with the fences there.”

Cartmel-based trainer James Moffatt also agreed the series is a shot in the arm for northern racing.

He said: “It’s a good idea for the second or third tier rated horses, it gives them their ‘Cheltenham’ as it were. Good prize money always brings owners to the table, so I think it’s a great initiative.

“When you have that kind of prize money up for horses you are encouraged to have a go.

“I think it’s a great initiative and we need more things like this in the north of England.

“I have a horse called Lough Kent that’s done quite well in the spring and he qualified at Cartmel in May. He’s had a break and I think he’s going to come back and have another go. He has won on soft ground. It’s certainly a very realistic option for him.”

The five categories are 3m handicap chase, 2½m handicap chase, 2m handicap hurdle, 3m handicap hurdle and 2½m mares handicap hurdle.

The series is not confined exclusively to northern-trained horses, but to qualify horses are required to have started in at least two series qualifiers and been placed in the first eight at least once.

Geraldine McKay, General Manager at Carlisle Racecourse, agreed the series was a good boost for northern racing.

She said: “It’s a great initiative and we are delighted to be hosting the series finals day on December 3. We pride ourselves on providing quality opportunities for all types of horse. We provide a challenging course which is why so many of leading trainers and owners bring their horses here.

“Over the last few years we have seen the likes of Seeyouatmidnight, Pineau de Re and Many Clouds race here and we are proud to have been part of their development.”

Tickets for the Northern Lights Series Final on Sunday December 3rd – which will include plenty of fun activities alongside the track for all the family – are £14 in advance (£17 on the day). It is free admission for all-under-18s when accompanied by a full-paying adult. Gates open at 10.20am. First race is 12.20pm. Last Race is 3.30pm.

Champion Jockey Leads The Field In Star-Studded Cumberland Chase

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Champion Jockey Richard Johnson will go head-to-head with one of the main challengers to his crown in what promises to be a sizzling November 5th meeting at Carlisle.

Johnson – champion in 2015 and 2016 – has ridden 88 winners this year and will be looking to add to that tally with four runners at Carlisle’s annual Cumberland Chase meeting on Sunday.

They include Chef D’Oeuvre in the historic Cumberland Handicap Chase which also features Sam Twiston-Davies on board Templecross. Twiston-Davies is third in the Stobart Jump Jockeys Championship with 64 winners to his name in 2017.

The 15-strong field for the £25,000 Cumberland Chase sees entries from a host of top trainers including David Pipe, Oliver Sherwood, Nigel Twiston-Davies, Michael Scudamore, Jonjo O’Neill, Venetia Williams and Sandy Thomson.

Sherwood is no stranger to Carlisle as he trained the great Many Clouds – winner of both the 2014 Colin Parker and the Grand National in 2015.

Blameitalonmyroots is Sherwood’s entry in the Cumberland Chase. The seven-year-old, who has four wins from 14 outings, was an impressive winner at Kempton Park in February.

Fellow Grand National winner Lucinda Russell has three entries on Sunday’s card – Sammy B, who enjoyed a three-race winning streak earlier this year with successes at Musselburgh, Kelso and Haydock, together with Celtic Flames and Sky Kahn. All three will be ridden by National winning jockey Derek Fox.

The headline race of the day – the Colin Parker Memorial Intermediate Chase – will again be hotly contested with owners and trainers using it as a real test for their Class One horses ahead of the Grand National and Cheltenham Festival.

Malcolm Jefferson’s Waiting Patiently will be going for glory in the race after winning his last three races over fences. The six-year-old has not finished outside the top two in all six of his races to date.

He will be up against French six-year-old made Belami Des Pictons, who made it five wins from his last six starts when cantering home by 33 lengths at Leicester in February, and Nicky Richards-trained Baywing whose last victory came at Wetherby in February when he romped home by an impressive 25 lengths.

This Sunday should be a red-hot November 5th meeting in more ways than one with a cracking day of National Hunt action on the track and plenty of Guy Fawkes-related family fun held alongside it.

Attractions include pony rides, pyro arts and crafts, a series of ‘Mad Science’ shows and a post-racing bonfire. And the great news is children get in ABSOLUTELY FREE!

Geraldine McKay, Carlisle Racecourse’s General Manager, said: “The Colin Parker is our Blue Ribband jumps event and we are delighted to see another cracking list of entries this year.

“The race certainly does breed the stars of the future with many of the horses who have triumphed in the Colin Parker going on to great success at Aintree and Cheltenham.

“The meeting always draws racing fans from around the country and we expect another great day of top quality jumps racing.

“And alongside the track we have a host Guy Fawkes-themed fun for all the family as well as a post-race bonfire. What makes days like this so wonderful is, as with all our race meetings, under-18s get in absolutely free.

“We can’t wait for another fantastic day of racing and fun for racegoers young and old.”

Adult tickets for The Guy Fawkes Family Race Day – Sunday November 5th – are £14.00 (in advance) or £17.00 (on the day). All under 18s get in free when accompanied by an adult. Gates open at 10.55am. First race is 12:55pm. Last race is 4.10pm.

 

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