Thursday, 10 March 2011

Cheltenham part 2...and a cold field near Birmingham

Cheltenham part 2

The pupils at Warden Hill Primary School in Cheltenham are a sharp bunch, even first thing in the morning. They made a perfect audience for us given that the author bloke’s voice was ropey from the 420 pupils the afternoon before – perfect because all 220 of them laughed in all the right places and then were quiet in between. It didn’t take long for Keith’s voice to return to something approaching normal.

They must have enjoyed themselves because they bought lots of books afterwards, with Lee’s Holiday Showdown being the day’s favourite purchase. That would suggest they’re a canny lot as it’s the one that gives most words for your money. As a Scotsman, the author bloke obviously loves canniness.

The lovely Mrs Newman organised for me to be at Warden Hill. She’s a writer too – I heard her telling Keith that she’s written a script. I’ll bet it’s a cracker. And a particularly big thank you to the staff in the office who collated orders for all those who weren’t able to grab books immediately after our visit. It’s one of the things I like about my visits with the author bloke – nobody realises how much of a great time they’re going to have until they’re sitting in one of the sessions.

A cold field near Birmingham

No sooner had we thrust everything into the car in Cheltenham than we were making fast tracks to Sutton Coldfield.

Now, why is Sutton Coldfield called that. Was it built on the site of field someone thought was colder than any other field? If so, was it colder? And if it was, why? And if it was nothing to do with a cold field, is there another explanation? I’m curious. And is Sutton the name of the person who owned the field? Does anyone know?

We were at Holy Cross Primary School, right on the edge of Sutton Coldfield next to other fields that may have been hot, cold or luke warm…I didn’t have a chance to check because we were soon in the hall with all of years 3-6. They were another great bunch of pupils and teachers. There were a couple of times when the laughter was so explosive that I thought it was going to blow the roof off the school hall. That’s my kind of afternoon!

And when the laughter was over it was time to hit the road again. Onwards to Leeds and Bradford!

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