The August Bank Holiday is of course the weekend of the very good Greenbelt Festival.
This year our plans have changed somewhat, as at the time of writing I’m still not feeling that great healthwise. For the first year since I started going (which was, I think, 1999) the campervan will be staying at home and we will not be going a day early to camp at a highly secret Gloucestershire location ready to queue up at 10am at Cheltenham Racecourse on Friday morning. We (that’s my wife and I) are still planning to go, but have decided that staying in a hotel would be a better option for someone who doesn’t quite know how much of the Festival he’s going to feel like going to.
Our traditional Wibsite meet will still be happening (latest info here) but not at the usual venue. The plan is currently the
beer tent tiny tea tent at 4.30 on Saturday – hopefully word will get around if there is any change.
I hope to be in the Church Times tent for some time over the weekend. The tent is to host a cartoon exhibition featuring work by the different Church Times cartoonists. If, on the off-chance, you had any interest in ‘My Pew‘ and/or the 2009 calendar then it is rumoured that they will be available.
Also available in the tent will be the Church Times Guide to Greenbelt, a free… well… guide to Greenbelt. I don’t really know what will be in it, but it is just possible that it might include a map of the site in a style you might recognise.
All being well I will be writing about the Festival on the Church Times blog (link). I’ve even gone so far as to organise a press pass so that I can go and make use of an electrical socket in the press room as my super-duper miniature mobile festival-blogging laptop with-added-dongle has a battery life of about half an hour. This (CartoonChurch) blog may go fairly quiet until after the weekend as I will be concentrating my efforts on the Church Times one.
Of course my involvement is subject to my being up and about, which I really hope I will be as Greenbelt is usually the highlight of my year. I’m determined to be there for some of it even if I have to crawl around on hands and/or knees. I’ll look forward to seeing some of you there – do come and say hello if you see me loitering or indeed crawling around in the aforementioned manner.
Posted by Dave at 11:23 pm on August 20, 2008 and filed under Festivals and Exhibitions, Greenbelt.
Another sign from the National Railway Museum. There’s not really anything funny about it, but I must admit that it has brought me mild joy during idle moments. The rest of the notice has been blanked out because I felt it didn’t really add anything to the first few sentences.
Posted by Dave at 10:29 pm on August 19, 2008 and filed under Photographs.
Thank you for the splendidly creative answers given to my ‘holiday photograph 1′ conundrum. The suggestions given have, I’m sure, drawn many an admiring glance from other commenter-box attenders.
The signs are in fact from the interior of one of the ‘pods’ (or ‘capsules’, if you will) of the Yorkshire Wheel at the National Railway Museum in York. The notices, one assumes, illustrate the capsule-commandments: Thou shalt not kick, Thou shalt not punch, Thou shalt not lean. (I did in fact reverse the image as I think the leaning sign works best as the third, but anyone looking into a pod from the outside (from an aeroplane, for example) would indeed see the signs as I posted them.)
The Yorkshire Wheel is well worth going to see if you are in York with six spare pounds (the National Railway Museum is free which makes the combined experience very reasonable in my opinion). The wheel is apparently half the height of the London Eye but cost one tenth of the amount to build. It goes faster than the London one and (when we went at least) each group or couple got a pod to themselves meaning that there was ample space to kick, punch or lean had the signage not prohibited it.
I have put some of my Yorkshire Wheel photos into a smörgåsbord-like arrangement below, thereby disguising the fact that individually they are mostly some combination of a bit blurry, rather overcast and/or quite badly composed.
1. Car park from wheel
2. Wheel from car park
3. Looking up from a spot somewhere below
4. Unimpressive view of York Minster, but one that shows signage
Health update. Still feeling rather wiped out. Wandered out to the garage earlier, a distance of 25 meters, with a similar length of return journey. Nearly finished me off. Just hope I’m going to recover in time for Greenbelt.
Posted by Dave at 9:20 pm on August 19, 2008 and filed under Photographs.
I have returned from holidaytime. As no-one really reads blogs in August I think I can afford to show you one or two of my holiday photographs without too much of an outcry.
This is photograph number one. If anyone can explain the meaning of the signage their prize will be the possibility of admiring glances from other frequenters of the comments page.
I have a slight virus so will not be doing any in-depth blogging or drawing work for a day or two. I will attempt to reply to some e-mails, but it might not be in an in-depth way.
Posted by Dave at 8:46 pm on August 18, 2008 and filed under Mundane, Photographs.
Well, the Lambeth Conference has been and gone. I had hoped to write more about it, but time has run out and I’m now taking a bit of a break from the blog for a couple of weeks.
Welcome, by the way, to readers of the Echo (local paper for south Essex): ‘Cartoonist raises bishops’ spirits‘. Do have a look around the site – hope you enjoy the church-related and non-church-related cartoons.
A few practical notes: Comments – You are of course very welcome to post them, but they won’t appear until I return. E-mails – Sorry, I am still way behind on these. I’m afraid I won’t be reading any until I return.
See you in a few weeks or at Greenbelt. Unless you live in a northern cathedral city, in which case there is a small chance that you might see me wandering the streets.
Posted by Dave at 10:32 am on August 6, 2008 and filed under CartoonChurch progress, Mundane, Sundry posts.
Today has been the final day of the Lambeth Conference. I am here in my room at the university in Canterbury, but tomorrow morning it will be time to pack up and go home. If you’d like to know about the official ‘anglican goings-on’ bits of the day then see my post on the Church Times blog. It is short, but it has the important links.
Today has been, for me at least, an even more surreal day than yesterday. In summary, I got to present a second cartoon to the Archbishop of Canterbury, on this occasion in the big top in front of the whole Lambeth Conference at the end of the final plenary session. I am, as you can see, making this cartoon-giving to the Archbishop a daily habit (he will be dreading tomorrow, just in case that wretched cartoonist shows up again with yet another canvas that he has to do something with). This time the cartoon was The bishops of the 2008 Lambeth Conference.
Photograph: ACNS / Scott Gunn – also on Flickr (Thanks to Scott for taking the time to send me these so quickly).
The handover was in itself a comedy moment – I was stationed on the stage with my cartoon wrapped in a black bin liner whilst the bishop in charge of the final thankyous thanked the Archbishop for all he has done at the conference. At this point an Important Person of the Anglican Communion said ‘go’, the head of Important Things at Lambeth Palace said ‘go’, so I started my walk across the stage towards the bishop at the lectern. However, the lectern bishop decides that he is not ready for me to arrive in his domain, so waves me away. I must emphasise that all of this is happening in front of the entire Lambeth Conference. I stand mid stage, unannounced, looking like a badly-timed rabbit in the spotlights.
[Photo: ACNS / Scott Gunn]
I turn to one of the organisers of the spouses conference who is standing nearby and ask for advice. She agrees that I am in a bit of a predicament. Everyone then sits down (the point at which the above photo is taken). After what seems like a short to medium term eternity (though no doubt it was probably only a few seconds) the lectern bishop ushers me forward and I hand over the cartoon canvas. The image was projected up onto the screens (thanks to Brian at the Church Times who sent me a good quality high res version) and people seemed to like it.
[Photo: ACNS / Scott Gunn]
I’d say more about this and things in general, but I am exhausted. Tonight was the closing Eucharist at the Cathedral, which was magnificent for all sorts of reasons, followed by food in the grounds of the cathedral. Unfortunately it was pelting down with rain, which meant that everyone got quite wet, especially idiot cartoonists who did not take a coat. The cathedral people opened up one of their halls for us to eat in, which was great as a party atmosphere began to develop. I have pictures of the dancing (including one fairly well-known Archbishop) but I will not be posting them, not least because they are rubbish as pictures. I must confess to having undertaken a small amount of dancing myself, after a posse of stewards demanded it. And great fun it was too.
Thanks to everyone for your kind comments after the last photograph of a cartoon handover. And continued thanks for all the other kindness of various sorts.
[Updated Sunday morning to add photographs]
Posted by Dave at 11:36 pm on August 3, 2008 and filed under Lambeth 08, Lambeth Conference.
This afternoon I had the opportunity to present a cartoon canvas to the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams. The cartoon is ‘the parish system‘. The Archbishop has visited my cartoon tent on several occasions over the course of the Lambeth Conference and this was one picture that he had enjoyed.
As you may have picked up I am a great fan of the Archbishop, so to be given this chance was a highlight of what has already been for me a really quite overwhelming conference. The handing over of the canvas was originally planned for 14.30 in the cartoon tent, but in light of the Archbishop’s time commitments today the venue was moved to his flat / office and the time to 16.50. My wife and one of the official conference photographers came with me. The picture makes it look as if part of the image is missing, but that is just the sunlight shining behind the canvas.
Tomorrow is the final plenary session followed by a service in Canterbury Cathedral. I go home on Monday.
Posted by Dave at 11:55 pm on August 2, 2008 and filed under Anglican goings-on, Cartooning, Lambeth 08, Lambeth Conference.
The photograph (ACNS / Sweeny) shows the CartoonChurch marketplace stand with two of my kind helpers helping. As you can see we made the most of the fact that the organisers had provided a basketball hoop.
In order to cut out the slam-dunking bishop I trawled the entire conference for a pair of decent scissors. In the end I ended up in the office of the Lambeth Secretariat, from whom I borrowed the official Lambeth Conference Scissors. I can reveal (and Scott, this is an EXCLUSIVE) that although the official Conference Scissors look impressive they are blunt, and in the end I discovered (having cut out the entire bishop) that my idea three-for-a-pound scissors were better. The people in the Lambeth Secretariat were very friendly though and it was a pleasure to meet them.
Today I have not been in the tent as the wind has been blowing furiously and I do not feel that my tent is safe (I am being serious). It is a very good tent, but the people putting it up did a poor job of the installation and the whole thing is only secured by four pegs. I tried to find some extra pegs, but I could not really afford to run around for half the day looking for them.
Yesterday I arrived at the tent to find that my folding chair had been stolen in the night. In return I had been left a red ASB Holy Communion book. An utter mystery.
By the way, yesterday’s BBC film crew were filming for the BBC News Channel (formerly BBC News 24). Unfortunately there is no ‘watch again’ for most of the output of the news channel, so unless you were watching at that time you will, like me, have missed it. They were to film again today, but I spoke to them earlier and it has been decided that there is no story, so they have left.
Today I talked to William Crawley from BBC Northern Ireland. He wrote about me here yesterday. We recorded a short interview for his Sunday show in the lobby of the prayer centre, but people kept on coming into the building to use the facilities (of one kind or another) meaning that we had to stop and start to avoid the sound of electric doors and hand driers. I was not very confident so will probably come across poorly.
Other people writing kind things about me: Episcopal Life and BBC Kent.
My cartoons from the conference are appearing on the Lambeth Daily, here. As you will have noticed my cartoons have not been daily. This is owing to various factors.
For proper news about what is going on see the Church Times Blog. I have added quite a lot of entries today, most of them by other people.
Finally, please forgive the following things:
- The self promotional nature of this and in fact many of my posts.
- The fact that I am not remotely keeping up with e-mail at the moment.
Posted by Dave at 5:35 pm on August 1, 2008 and filed under Lambeth 08, Lambeth Conference, Photographs.