Category Archives: Radio

Christmas time is coming to Food for Thought

I have been against talking about Christmas yet, but it has slowly dawned on me that we are less than a month away from the day itself. There have been a few signs, the Christmas lights being switched on in Lincoln, seeing the Coca-Cola advert and I found myself at a Christmas Food and Gift fair last weekend.

The Lincolnshire Showground was hosting the fair and it was a great day. It was all for my food show on Lincoln’s first community radio station, Siren FM. My friend Sam came along with me, and we were genuinely excited about the amount of seasonal, local food products available. We found a man in Yorkshire (so unfortunately just out of the area for Siren FM) who makes his own chorizo, there was also tasting sessions of chocolate wine as well as orders taking place for Lincolnshire geese and turkey. I also found the largest hog roast sandwiches ever.

I also met some great new people to feature and profile on my Siren show who will be turning up in the next few weeks and hopefully into 2013.

This is merely a bit of a tease though. I am currently working on the Christmas special of Food for Thought, which has plenty of fun ideas including the upcoming Lincoln Christmas Market.

Also on this week’s show I was invited to go try out Lincoln’s latest restaurant Wagamamas. Myself, and my plus one Jon, spent most of the evening trying to figure out if the waiters knew we were reviewing them or not. Turns out they didn’t, which was a relief. The service was lovely and the food very good. Verdict is that it is great that Lincoln has something new which doesn’t offer pizza. As a result the place is really busy so plan when you are going, lunchtime seems to be less frantic.

To entice you further here are some images of the dishes we tried, which Wagamamas kindly gave to me.

Interested? Well you can listen to the edited highlights here, or listen to the show in full on Siren FM on Wednesdays at 2pm or Saturdays at 3pm.

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Making sense of the census

This documentary was created as part of my university degree. It is intended for young teenagers in Lincolnshire who might be learning about the census at school.

It may only be 40 questions that need to be answered every 10 years, but what is the census for?

Follow me as I start filling in my census and discover how the 10 year event is organised, how the answers from the forms are used to find out which parts of the country need more money and how important this document ends up being when people want to look into their family history.

Along the way it is revealed which famous Lincolnshire people are on the census and find out why the idea of people putting their religion as the Star Wars faith Jedi in a bid to make it a real religion was never going to work, as well as how the census may be forgotten about by the public after it has been sent back but 2021 census forms are already being prepared.

I also delve into the Lincolnshire Archives as they launch a new website called Lincs to the Past. It is a new way to publish their records online that are hidden away in the archives, museums and libraries and make them easily accessible.

As government voted to raise the cap on tuition fees, Lincoln reacts

Listen to the interview with Karl McCartney in full:

Lincoln’s MP Karl McCartney said he did not fear a student backlash when he decided to vote with the government to raise the cap on tuition fees to £9,000.

Even though the MP represents a city with two universities, he says he did not worry about voting against the views of students – saying that he would not “be scared in to voting a different way”.

He added: “I would hope [by the next general election] they would see that I’ve voted in the best interest of the city that I represent.

“I represent all the people in Lincoln… It’s not right that students should expect taxpayers who are taking the economic hits [to pay for their education].”

The vote, which took place in parliament on December 9th, saw 323 MPs vote in favour of raising fees to a maximum of £9,000 and 302 MPs voted against.

McCartney says that he is confident that Lincoln will not be affected by changed to the funding of higher education: “I know how important the university and the college is to Lincoln and the city and to the wellbeing of the city… I’m well aware of the benefits that Lincoln as a city has through having the educational institutions in the city and I wouldn’t like to see that harmed in any way and I don’t think this is.”

However, a report in to the funding changes by the University and College Union (UCU) highlighted the University of Lincoln as being “high risk” and Bishop Grosseteste as “very high risk” saying they would “struggle to survive” along with 47 other universities across England.

Professor Scott Davidson, Deputy Vice Chancellor at the University of Lincoln, rejected this view and declared the report “inaccurate and unhelpful”, saying that the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) have said “Lincoln was doing everything right and that we are one of the sounder institutions they are working with”.

Listen to the interview with Professor Scott Davidson in full:

Professor Davidson said that the University of Lincoln has had a “consistent stance” about not being in agreement with a rise in tuition fees and is disappointed “that this is a step that the government has seen fit to take”.

Professor Davidson stressed that the University would continue to provide a teaching and learning experience for students, continue to be good employers for our staff, as well continue their commitment to research and keep the investors happy.

The Deputy Vice Chancellor was pleased that McCartney had hope for the future of the university and said that the local MP voting for the rise in tuition fees was a matter of “personal determination” and he recognised that “to be a government rebel is not particularly healthy if you’ve got ambitions within a particular party”.

There have been a number of protests from students and union members which culminated in around 20 people deciding to occupy a room in the University of Lincoln’s Main Admin Building on Wednesday, December 8th.

After hearing the result the group were shocked and have decided to occupy the seminar room indefinitely.

The University has been supportive of their decision to protest and just want to make sure that timetables for other students are not disrupted.

Professor Davidson has sympathises with the protesting students saying: “I’ll think you’ll find quite a lot of the staff at the University were themselves in the 60s and 70s involved in similar kinds of activities.

“We are quite happy to see students exercise their democratic right to protest in this way and I have to say the students who have been in occupation in the Main Administration Building have behaved in an exemplary way, they are making their point extremely well and we are very happy for them to be able to do that.”

These interviews were part of a newsday for the Siren FM show City Vibe and were also reproduced on The Linc and LSJ News

Media City package

In early October I won a competition, courtesy of writing an essay with a funny joke at the end, to visit Media City. This is a development in Salford Quays, Manchester where the BBC will be moving in 2011. Five departments, including children’s and Five Live, will move up to the north away from London.

My impressions fromthe day was that the site was much smaller than I had imagined it to be, essentially not much bigger than my university campus. It is also a weird mix of proposed BBC site, University of Salford building, Holiday Inn, apartments.  It is just a strange mixture on such a small site.

Also with everything that you essentially need in one small place and a lot of media types all living together then it feels inevitable that it will become secluded, even though the centre of Manchester is only 15 minutes away on tram.

On top of that I keep being told that I could get a job in Manchester when I graduate as it isn’t too far from me now. However, I am a Southerner and pretty much everything I hold dear to me is closer to London. So whilst others are genuinely excited about media corporations finally looking at the north, I find it strange. Of course when it comes to job finding time I won’t be this picky then.

During the course of the day I spoke to representatives from Peel Construction Company, the people behind the building of the Media City site, and people from the BBC.

This is a package that I have made for Siren FM, which will be played out before the upcoming talk from Peter Salmon, BBC North Director.