The Whistler – December 2010

Santa's Tickly Tale


Last year’s editorial, on the brink of a new decade, looked back on the previous decade as one of change but also as one of consistency. We looked forward to more of Pam Bean’s sales but now, sadly, they will be one of the many memories we have of her.

The Whistler has been published by the WHCA for more than 30 years and we’d like to keep it going for many more decades. It’s delivered free to households, libraries and businesses as well as being online with some different articles. The print and distribution costs are covered by adverts, and we have many regular contributors. We’re always looking for new ideas and new writers – particularly someone to take over the long-running Gossips & Grumbles column. We’d like to hear what you think about The Whistler – tell us what you want to read and, better still, send us your letters and contributions.

The West Hill Action Team, a Council initiative for local action, held three meetings in 2010, the last one in November in the West Hill Hall. The priorities for action from those meetings were more info about local services, dog fouling, graffiti and speeding. Let us know what your priorities are.


Dear Editor

I am very interested in contacting Graham Miles, [featured in the Oct/Nov edition]. My 21 year old son, Sam, has been told he is paralysed. I read about Graham six weeks ago when my son became ill. I learnt that Graham had started his recovery by concentrating on his breathing. So, even though Sam was asleep most of the time, I told him to breathe.  He is still on the ventilator but is being weaned off slowly and the medical staff are very pleased with him. If you are in contact with Graham, please could you pass my details on to him?
Veronica Guilfoyle, Yorkshire

[Happily, we were able to put Veronica in touch with Graham, and many other people asked us for some more information about Graham, so we asked him to tell us a little bit more about himself – Ed]

Dear Editor
I am/was a physicist, engineer, quality and procedural expert and writer. During the past few years I have written some forty poems [see one of them on page 9 – Ed]. Since I achieved my racing licence, five years after leaving hospital following locked-in syndrome, I have entered the Brighton National Speed Trials every year since 2000. Continue reading Letters

Spotted Near The Dials

Kevin Freeman
Kevin Freeman

I met Kevin Freeman at the Brighton & Hove Business Speed Networking show mentioned in the Oct/Nov edition and there was something about this stylish and gentle man that I wanted to find out more about. Kevin is the creative powerhouse behind Renaissance Design, a truly multi-talented Renaissance man, a dress, costume and installation designer. It’s only a hop, skip and a jump from the West Hill to Western Road where Kevin has his studio on the top floor above Fabric Land.

He creates bespoke bridal gowns, evening wear, costumes for singers and actors (including Frances de la Tour, Saffron Burrows and Ralph Little when he worked for the BBC, and more recently for Suzie Kennedy – the world’s No 1 Marilyn Monroe impersonator – Katherine Ellis, Sandie Shaw, Carol Harrison), and installations for many different events. His wedding dresses are not for blushing brides – he’s had many weird and wonderful commissions from people who want something different and eye-catching. “When I was little I used to have a set of Disney books and I remember drawing medieval princesses with pointy hats on the fly covers of them,” Kevin says. “I’ve always been interested in clothes and design and colours.” His bridal gowns start at £1500 and he designs to the specifications of his customers, who come in all shapes and ages but have one thing in common, they want their fun and adventurous characters to be reflected in the creations that Kevin designs for them. You’ll have to allow at least 6 months if you want Kevin to make you a wedding dress, but it’s normal for most people to start planning their big day 12-18 months in advance.
Continue reading Spotted Near The Dials

Brighton COW

Community of Writers
We are two Brighton-based English writers, who live in Centurion Road and Montpelier Terrace. We have recently set up our own website, called the Brighton COW, (Community of Writers). We are aiming to promote new writers and writing through a range of competitions. We will run four short story competitions in 2011. The deadlines will be the end of February, May, August and November. We are planning some fun, free-to-enter contests too.
Continue reading Brighton COW

Last Census in 2011

In 1798 demographer Thomas Malthus, published his essay on the ‘principle of population’. Malthus caused great concern by suggesting that population growth would soon outstrip supplies of food and other resources. Unable to support itself, Britain would be hit by famine, disease and other disasters. Concerned at this alarmist view of the future, people began to see the need for a census. Parliament passed the Census Act in 1800 and the first official census of England and Wales was on 10 March 1801. The first official head count revealed that Great Britain’s population at the time was 9 million. Since 1801 there has been a census every ten years except in 1941, during WWII.
Continue reading Last Census in 2011