Guitar Man

John Kent
John Kent

John Kent has played guitar for thirty years and now runs Guitar Tuition Brighton as a full time teaching practice offering tuition in rock, pop and blues guitar.

The approach John often uses creates a way for students to learn aspects of music that immediately interests them:

“I offer the student the opportunity to present a list of songs they would like to learn and build the lessons around the songs. I introduce music theory that is appropriate for the student’s ability and plan each lesson to maintain a balance of enjoyment with learning. Students find this approach less intimidating and more inspiring that just memorising chords or TAB.”

John currently teaches to an age range from 9 to 59 years and is member of the Registry of Guitar Tutors, has an Enhanced CRB Disclosure and is fully insured. For enquiries phone 01273 208438 or 07876 375862.

A Poem by Brendon Batchelor


These 3 Guardian Angels sweetly haunted his dreams

Corin, Carrie and Janet came to him one night
Although they meant no harm
He seemed to get a fright!
Corin said, “Don’t be scared Honey,
We’re your guardian angels;
We are watching over cool dudes like you
‘Cos you dig our music!
We are more Punk Rock revolutionaries,
Rather than Marx or Engels.
Our music will never make you sick!”
All of a sudden, he woke up!
It most certainly seemed
That these 3 guardian angels sweetly haunted his dreams…
So he had an idea, one that was truly great,
That he’d go and buy an album
By these girls from Washington State
He went down to his local record shop –
He was no schmuck –
Over in the ‘S’ section,
Thus he realised his luck.
A lover of cool rock,
He knew where the stood…
He bought himself a copy of
Sleater-Kinney’s ‘The Woods’.


Food Growing in Brighton & Hove

The Brighton and Hove Food Partnership has secured a grant of £500,000 over four years from the Big Lottery Fund to increase the amount of food grown in the City and to encourage people to eat more locally produced food. ‘Harvest Brighton and Hove’ is one of the first projects in England to receive a Beacon grant from the Big Lottery’s Local Food scheme, awarded to projects which have national significance. Harvest Brighton and Hove is a project led by the Brighton and Hove Food Partnership, in partnership with Food Matters, the University of Brighton, the Brighton and Hove Allotment Federation, the Brighton Permaculture Association, Moulsecoomb Forest Garden and the Whitehawk Community Food Project. It is supported by Brighton and Hove City Council, and Brighton and Hove Teaching Primary Care Trust.

Harvest Brighton and Hove aims to increase the amount of local food produced and eaten within the City, and encourage more people to grow food in their gardens, patios or even window boxes. It will encourage food growing in underused and unusual spaces, for example, on land around housing and workplaces and will provide people with the skills and opportunities to grow food – whether at home, school or in community gardens.

“This is tremendous news for the City. Harvest Brighton and Hove is about showing that food is more than just an item in plastic wrapping on a supermarket shelf,” said Brighton and Hove Food Partnership Chair, Sue Dibb. “We are thrilled that we are only one of a few projects to receive Beacon funding from the Big Lottery.”

Councillor Mary Mears, Chairman of Brighton & Hove’s Sustainability Cabinet Committee, said: “The Council is proud to be part of Harvest Brighton and Hove. I’m looking forward to seeing food plots sprouting up in unexpected corners of the City. Not only will they look good, they will taste good too. The successful bid of £1/2 million over the next four years will bring together communities, decision-makers and local enterprises to inspire and support residents in growing their own fruit, vegetables and herbs.”

The three year project will work with partners across the City to explore how urban food production can help reduce the carbon footprint of the City, tackle obesity and diet-related disease, increase the quality of life of residents, and contribute to a more sustainable food system in the future. Researchers from the University of Brighton will develop an urban agriculture ‘opportunity map’ for Brighton and Hove, making recommendations for an urban design strategy that can accommodate food growing sites within the city. They will also evaluate the success of the project. Andre Viljoen from the University said:
“Harvest Brighton and Hove will move us one step further towards testing the viability of urban agriculture as an essential element of sustainable urban infrastructures.”

Mark Wheddon, Local Food Programme Manager of the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts, added: “The Beacon projects we will be funding over the next few months will have a real impact on the accessibility of local food right across the country. Harvest Brighton and Hove marks just the beginning in Beacon grant funding from the Local Food programme and we are excited by the quality of projects we will be supporting in the future.” The project will be formally launched in the autumn.

The Cycles of Life

If we look with the ‘right’ eyes, we see cycles in all aspects of life. There are the more obvious daily and annual cycles and the cycle of the seasons, but also there are the cycles of the biorhythms within our bodies. Observing these can give us real insights into the overall cycle of life.

As the season of summer begins to enter our lives again, we see the flowers in full blossom and the beauty of the sunshine sparkling on the ocean. We are reminded of the blessing it is to be living so close to the sea. If we are able to take the time to sit by the ocean, we can feel the gentle ebb and flow of the waves as they fulfil their own little cycle of existence, bringing a sense of repetition which, interestingly, has a calming influence. Perhaps even taking us into a state where we are so mesmerised by the movement of the waves that we lose ourselves in a place where time no longer seems to exist. As we return to everyday activities a small part stays for a while in that calmer state and perhaps we are more aware of the vibrant colours and smells surrounding us as we continue on our way.

As the summer heat kicks in and the bank holidays come, we find many people entering our world as they come from the Big City for a day by the sea or from further afield for a change in their routine. We see pure delight on small children’s faces as they experience the sea for the first time or perhaps return with fond memories of previous times spent frolicking by the shore. Soon it is time for a new cycle to unfold as people head for home at the end of the day, at the end of a holiday or as the season begins to change…


Trying to Look on the Bright Side

Portfolio“Here we are again, happy as can be. . . ”, as my dear old Dad used to sing, when we were setting off on our summer holidays. Well, you could be excused for thinking that happy days are here again, if you read the right papers, or listen to the right radio stations: the ‘Footsie’ is up by something approaching a thousand points since my last column, mortgage approvals up by 19% in February and 16% in March and the Nationwide’s house price index actually rose in March! Years of experience have taught me to not to get too carried away, when things are starting to go well. In fact, I am less optimistic about the short-term future of the UK stock market, than I was when writing my piece for the February/March issue, when I said “when things are looking bleak, it is usually a good time to invest”. Not that I am pessimistic about markets, I still feel that many stocks and bonds are undervalued, but just not as cheap as they were. Many other economic factors are still negative, and there is a lot of bad news that needs to work its way through the system. Unemployment will go up, and house repossessions with it, and they will not be the only ‘bitter pills’ that will have to be swallowed. But ever the long-term optimist, I continue to believe that – barring earth shattering events, this year will be a positive one for stock markets.

The much predicted rally in bond markets doesn’t seem to have manifested itself yet, but more industry luminaries seem to be ‘putting their money where their mouths are’ and investing in quality bonds and bond funds. With some funds offering running yields of 10 – 15% the potential for some capital appreciation (with income reinvested) seems to far outweigh the potential risks. While I am on the subject of risk, yesterday, I met up with the manager of one of my favourite ‘protected growth’ funds. He was updating me on the roll-out of a higher risk, multi-asset fund (also designed and run by him) but I had to congratulate him on the success of his low-risk fund. It was designed to provide 100% capital protection; yet the units in the fund are up by over 6% since the launch in December 2008, a very creditable performance indeed.

Now just a brief few words on the recent Budget. The major impact is on the taxation, and pension tax-relief of those who earn in excess of £100,000 a year. A lucky few, most will think, who have probably already assessed the impact of the new rules. In the absence of any more notable events in the meantime, I shall give a summary of the most important budget proposals in the next issue. Until then, make the best of these ‘interesting times’.

David Foot