Monthly Archives

February 2019

Style Guru Gok Wan To Lead The Party At Carlisle’s Most Chic Night Of The Year

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International fashion guru Gok Wan has thrown down the gauntlet to Carlisle racegoers and asked: “Do you have what it takes to win the Style Stakes?”

The star of TV’s How To Look Good Naked and Gok’s Clothes Roadshow will be the special guest at Carlisle Racecourse’s annual Ladies Night meeting on Monday August 5.

Tickets – priced for a limited time at just £10 – are on sale now via

As well as taking to the DJ decks, to lead the not-to-be-missed post-racing ‘Party In The Paddock’, Gok will also crown Cumbria’s most stylish racegoers.

For the second year running the racecourse is holding its Ladies Night ‘Style Awards’ which will see the best dressed racegoer walk away with a cheque for a cool £2,000.

Ladies Night – the UK’s only all-female jockey race meeting – is a hugely popular fixture in Cumbria’s social calendar, one which oozes chic, style, glamour and fun.

And Gok says he cannot wait to see how Carlisle’s racegoers dress to impress before dancing the night away to his hit-packed DJ set.

He said: “Racing is famed for being a fabulously glamorous and stylish affair and it really doesn’t get much better than Ladies Night. I can’t wait to see how the glamorous guys and girls of Cumbria pull out all the stops on the night.

“And after an exciting day of racing, I’m looking forward to continuing the party vibe and fun from the stage.”

Carlisle’s Ladies Night is at the forefront of promoting women in racing with an all-female jockey racecard giving many young stars a real chance to shine.

And while there is serious work on the track for the dedicated jockeys, there is plenty of fun to be had in the paddock and stands.

Molly Dingwall, General Manager at Carlisle Racecourse, said: “We are incredibly proud of our Ladies Night.

“As the only all-female jockey race meeting in the UK, it really provides women jockeys with a unique platform to show just how good they are. Racing stars of the future really can be made at this meeting.

“It is also a total feel-good event. We love nothing more than to see racegoers get dressed up in their finery and let their hair down with friends and family.

“Last year we introduced the Style Awards, which is free for everyone to enter. It was so well received we are delighted to be bringing it back.

“In Gok Wan we have the perfect star guest to not only crown our Style Award winners but lead what will be a fabulous Party In The Paddock. This is going to be a night no-one will want to miss.”

Tickets for Ladies Night are on sale now via or by calling 0344 579 3002. Gates open on Monday August 5 at 2.45pm. First race is 5.45pm. Gok Wan’s DJ set will start after the last race.

Jamie’s Story Inspires Cod Army To Back England’s Young Amputee Footballers

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The inspirational story of a young footballer born with only one foot has led to Fleetwood Town chairman Andy Pilley backing England’s next generation of amputee players.

Jamie Oakey was born prematurely and weighing only 2lb 4oz after his mum Elaine was involved in a serious accident.

Fast forward 15 years and the Blackpool teenager has been named in the England Amputee FA’s Under-23 squad.

Jamie – who was born without a right foot and a short right leg – is also part of a group of junior players hoping to take part in an international training camp in Hoffenheim, Germany, in July.

To get there the young amputees and their families need raise £5,000 and so Jamie’s mum approached Fleetwood Town.

Chairman Andy Pilley was so moved by Jamie’s story he has not only offered financial support for the Germany training camp but is giving the England squad free use of the Cod Army’s state-of-the-art £9m Poolfoot Farm training base whenever they need it.

Andy said: “Jamie’s story is truly inspirational. When I heard about him and his team-mates, and then meeting his mum Elaine, I knew I just had to help.

“He is a local lad who has already achieved so much and so anything we can do to help him and his team-mates we’ll do it.

“I’m delighted to offer financial support for the Germany trip in July, but more importantly for me is to offer the England squad free use of our wonderful facilities here at Poolfoot anytime they need them.

“It was a privilege for me to meet Jamie and his mum and I wish the lads every success out in Germany. We cannot wait to welcome them here to Poolfoot in the future.”

As well as being part of the national squad Jamie is the youngest player ever selected to represent Everton FC in a Champions League match.

Proud mum Elaine said: “All these boys are totally amazing, inspirational superhumans who have overcome so much to be able to play the sport they love.

“The lads are amputees for various reasons, whether it be a birth defect, cancer or serious accident. They are truly remarkable, and nothing holds these kids back. However, due to funding limitations, players’ families need to raise money to meet travel and kit costs.

“I can’t thank Andy Pilley enough for his support. The donation for the Germany trip, which is a great opportunity for these young lads, together with the offer of the use of Fleetwood’s training ground, really means a lot – thank you Fleetwood Town!”

All national squads are supported by the England Amputee Football Association (EAFA), a registered charity, and the annual European training camp is co-ordinated by the European Amputee Football Federation (EAFF).

EAFA Chairman Steve Johnson said: “This is a fantastic social interaction opportunity for young amputees involved in our organisation to travel to Germany and meet other young amputees from various countries around Europe.

“I would like to thank Andy Pilley for his really generous donation towards this training camp to enable the young amputees to attend.”

The young amputee squad will also get to see Fleetwood Town in action as they have been invited to the Cod Army’s home game against Gillingham on March 2 – the club’s Junior Football Day which celebrates young grassroots players.

If you would like more information or to support the England Amputee Football Association visit


Tom Grennan & Jade Bird to join Stereophonics at Lytham Festival 2019

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Two of the UK’s most popular rising artists will support Stereophonics when they headline Lancashire’s Lytham Festival this summer.

The uber talented singer-songwriters Tom Grennan and Jade Bird will both perform support slots ahead of the Stereophonics gig on Thursday July 11.

The announcement comes after Lytham Festival has experienced its highest demand for tickets ever. 2019 marks the 10th anniversary of the five-day live music event and promoters are heralding it the biggest ever with legendary rock star Rod Stewart, international pop star Kylie Minogue, 80s synth-pop band The Human League and Hollywood Proms featuring Michael Ball and Sheridan Smith all set to headline alongside Welsh rockers Stereophonics.

And the addition of Tom Grennan and Jade Bird to the Stereophonics bill is set to be a huge hit.

Festival director Peter Taylor said: “The reaction to this year’s Lytham Festival continues to be phenomenal. We’ve had amazing artists over the years, but we’ve never had a full line up as strong as we do for 2019.

“To now be adding both Tom Grennan and Jade Bird as the support artists for Stereophonics is brilliant. Both artists are enjoying massive success and are clearly destined for incredible careers.

“Tom and Jade are amazingly talented artists and I am confident they will go down a storm at Lytham.”

Tom Grennan released his debut album Lightning Matches last summer reaching number 5 in the UK charts and it became the biggest selling album of a newly signed male artist of 2018. A sold-out autumn headline tour followed while Tom was also nominated as Best Breakthrough Act in the Q Awards.

Rave reviews have followed Tom since with descriptions including “a voice that’s somewhere between Paolo Nutini and Finley Quite with the swagger of Liam Gallagher.”

For Jade Bird the last couple of years have been somewhat of a whirlwind. Her debut EP Something American was launched in 2017 and she toured the States. Last year she was a finalist for the BBC Sound Of award and her debut album (recorded at Woodstock) is due out in Spring.

Rolling Stone have described Jade’s music as “a young Londoner’s spin on modern Americana” while Jade herself says she’s “kind of country, kind of blues, kind of pop and kind of none of that”.

Tickets for Lytham Festival are on sale now from


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Rod Stewart is adding more dates to his 2019 UK tour.

Due to the huge demand for the previously announced shows, Rod will now play an extra three winter arena dates to supplement the outdoor stadium and indoor arena dates already announced in support of the release of his 30th studio album Blood Red Roses which debuted at number 1.

The extra shows are:

Sat 23 November – Manchester, Manchester Arena

Weds 11 December – Leeds, First Direct Arena

Fri 13 December – Birmingham, Arena Birmingham

Tickets for the additional dates go on general sale at 9am Friday February 22 from

Rod Stewart Live in Concert has already announced 18 dates with headline shows at football stadiums, outdoor venues and arenas across England and Scotland from May through to July and November through to December including two shows at London’s O2.

The fully seated tour is being promoted by Cuffe and Taylor whose director Peter Taylor said: “Rod Stewart continues to wow fans both old and new across the world. The demand for his UK shows in 2019 has been phenomenal so we are delighted to be adding a further three dates to what is going to be a magnificent tour.

“These winter arena dates compliment what is mostly an outdoor summer tour and we can’t wait to get back on the road to witness hundreds of thousands of people enjoying the most incredible night watching Rod perform live.”

With his signature voice, style and songwriting, Rod Stewart has transcended all genres of popular music, from rock, folk, soul, R&B, and even the American standards; making him one of the few stars to enjoy chart-topping albums throughout every decade of his career.

Rod’s 2019 shows promise to be filled with both classics and new hits in his dazzling signature style. As one of the best-selling artists in the history of recorded music, with more than 200 million records sold worldwide, his performance will include show stopping classics from his glittering career as well as new album Blood Red Roses – a deeply personal 13-track collection of originals and three covers.

Rod has earned countless of the industry’s highest awards, among them, two inductions into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the ASCAP Founders Award for songwriting, New York Times bestselling author, Grammy™ Living Legend, and in 2016 he officially became ‘Sir Rod Stewart’ after being knighted by Prince William at Buckingham Palace for his services to music and charity.

Tickets for the additional dates go on general sale at 9am Friday February 22 from

Madness play headline show at Scarborough OAT as part of 40th anniversary celebrations

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British music legends Madness are bringing their 40th anniversary celebrations to Scarborough Open Air Theatre this summer.

Fresher of face and fleeter of foot than ever, it’s hard to believe 2019 will mark four decades since a rag tag of self-proclaimed ‘hoolies and urchins’ first emerged, gloriously unreconstructed, from the back streets of Camden Town fusing reggae, punk and pop on their classic debut album ‘One Step Beyond’.

Now in the 40th year of their near-Imperial reign over popular music, 2019 sees a raft of activity including a not-to-be-missed show at Scarborough Open Air Theatre on Friday July 19.

Tickets go on sale at 9am on Friday February 22nd via

Talking about the band’s landmark year, vocalist Suggs said: “We’ve seen off eight Prime Ministers, 12 England managers and a nasty bout of lumbago. But, it’s not the endless achievements, not the unforgettable memories, it’s the fact we’re even still alive! (and miraculously in the rudest of health, thanks for asking.) Raise your glasses, lower your swords ‘arise sir Madness!’ Get stuck in! Here’s to the next 40!”

The Scarborough OAT date will be a glorious Yorkshire coast return for Madness who last rocked Britain’s biggest open-air arena in 2017. The show is presented by Cuffe and Taylor whose director Peter Taylor said: “Madness are quite simply one of the most successful British bands of all time and an unmissable live act.

“Over the last 40 years they have written some of the nation’s best-loved pop anthems and every gig they play is a celebration. We are delighted to be able to bring this truly unique and deeply cherished band back to Scarborough as part of their 40th anniversary celebrations.”

Madness – Chris Foreman (guitar), Mike Barson (keyboards), Lee Thompson (saxophone), Graham “Suggs” McPherson (vocals), Dan Woodgate (drums) and Mark Bedford (bass) – have played to millions of fans over the last four decades.

Formed in Camden, they have chalked up 15 UK Top 10 singles – including the timeless Our House, It Must Be Love, One Step Beyond, My Girl, Wings Of A Dove and Baggy Trousers – together with seven Top 10 albums.

Their 11th studio album – 2016’s critically acclaimed Can’t Touch Us Now, featuring the hit single Mr Apples, instantly went Top 5 on its release.

Madness are currently beavering away in the studio on new material for release later this year, together with a series of massive gigs around the country. They play North London’s Kenwood House on June 15th, joined by a full orchestra. Then, on August 26th, they headline their own ‘House Of Common’ festival on South London’s Clapham Common.

2019 also sees the autobiography “Before We Was We – the Making Of Madness By Madness” hit the shelves. It tells the story of how Madness became Madness, how six unlikely lads become one of the most successful British Pop bands of all time, tracing the band members individual stories up to the start of their meteoric rise in 1979.

 Tickets for Madness at Scarborough Open Air Theatre go on sale at 9am on Friday February 22nd via or in person from Scarborough Open Air Theatre Box Office (01723 818111) and the Discover Yorkshire Coast Tourism Bureau (01723 383636).


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Haçienda Classical – the stunning live music event which brings the iconic sounds and unique atmosphere of the legendary club – is heading to Scarborough Open Air Theatre this summer.

The critically acclaimed show, which has been a smash hit with clubbers and dance music fans since its debut in 2016, will headline the UK’s biggest open air arena on Saturday June 8.

Tickets go on sale at 9am on Friday February 8 from

Support on the night comes from Manchester techno pioneers 808 State and a DJ set from music legend, and founding member of Joy Division and New Order, Peter Hook.

Haçienda Classical has a new set for 2019, curated by legendary DJ Graeme Park, Executive Producer Peter Hook, and Musical Director Tim Crooks.

This will again include orchestral renditions of the much-loved classic club records from The Haçienda’s heritage, revisiting some of the tracks that have proved popular with fans as well as bringing new additions and arrangements of seminal tracks to the set.

Over its three years to date, Haçienda Classical concerts have brought together a mixed crowd and lively atmosphere at events which see the set played as a continuous live DJ mix where vocalists, choir, orchestra and guests all combine creating a vibrant, exciting performance.

Graeme Park said: “I’m thrilled that we’ll be continuing the Haçienda Classical journey into 2019 and I’m already digging deep to find some new tracks for the new show. There are also some tracks from previous years that I’m keen to bring back and to make even better based on everything we’ve learned with all the incredible gigs so far. I’m determined to make next year’s show even more exciting than we’ve had before.”

Hacienda Classical’s show at Scarborough Open Air Theatre is presented by Cuffe and Taylor. Director Peter Taylor said: “This is going to be a sensational night at Scarborough OAT. We have worked with Haçienda Classical before and it is a truly stunning show.

“The beauty of Haçienda Classical is that it has such a wide appeal. Whether you are a regular clubber, you want to reminisce about your youth or you enjoy the appeal of something completely new presented by magnificently talented musicians – without a doubt this will be a spectacular and not to be missed night at Scarborough OAT.”

The show has well outperformed any expectations at the outset and has seen tremendous reactions from audiences and critics many of who have awarded the show five stars, even at the very first Bridgewater Hall show, The Times gave it top marks declaring that “the atmosphere was incredible.”

Similar rave reviews followed from the first Royal Albert Hall visit as NME called it “Probably the best rave since 1997″ whilst Mixmag termed the event. “a near two-hour blend of house music’s greatest players with an audience dancing and singing from the off.”

Haçienda Classical has continued to receive 5-star reviews from the like of The Independent – “It doesn’t get much better than this. A powerful, poignant performance.” – and its hometown paper, Manchester Evening News.

The Hacienda made Manchester the centre of the clubbing universe in its 80’s and 90’s heyday and surely what this night proves is that much of that success was down to the people inside it

Hacienda Classical’s biggest single audience to date came as it opened Glastonbury’s Festival’s Pyramid Stage in June 2017 and other festival appearances including Isle Of Wight, Kendal Calling The Big Feastival, Kew The Music, Lytham Festival as well as individual concerts at London’s Royal Albert Hall and Manchester’s Castlefield Bowl selling out

For audiences, these inspirational nights have recreated the tunes that defined a generation for a whole new set of fans, renewing them and rearranging them with the orchestra and artists to create a special and unique experience.

With improvement year on year, 2019’s incarnation for Hacienda Classical promises to be the very best so far.

 Tickets for Haçienda Classical at Scarborough Open Air Theatre show go on sale at 9am on Friday February 8 via or in person from Scarborough Open Air Theatre Box Office (01723 818111) and the Discover Yorkshire Coast Tourism Bureau (01723 383636).

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