Mar 162016
 

I’m pleased to announce that I will be speaking at the Gloucester Resident’s Event this year on my latest book Cultured Gloucester. Here’s the link and the entry in this year’s brochure:

http://venues.gloucester.gov.uk/Freetime/Museums/events/specialeventscity.aspx

“Christine Jordan ‘Gloucester’s Culture’
Come and hear local author Christine Jordan take us through the inspiration behind her new book – ‘Gloucester’s Culture’. Christine will be staying with us after the talk to offer a book signing, all three of her books will be available to purchase on the day from the museum gift shop.
20th March, 1pm,
City Museum
Tickets for the talk are FREE, but spaces are limited so pre-booking is essential.  Telephone (01452) 396131 to pre-book.”

Hope to see you there.

 

Mar 032016
 

I was approached by local artist Russell Haines earlier this year to collaborate with him on a community project called Our Life.

It’s a 12 month project celebrating people who do good things in the community, the unsung, overlooked ordinary acts of kindness that happen across the city every day.  Each month for a year, Russell is going to do a portrait of someone and I’m going to tell their story.

The portraits and the stories will be displayed in 4 areas of the city , The Quays, Eastgate Shopping Centre, Gloucester Train Station, Roots Café and Gloucester Services – one per venue.  Each month the portrait will move to the next venue and a new one take its place.

A panel of 4 people made up of Rev Ruth Fitter, (St Pauls and St Stephens) Imam Hassan, (Rycroft St Mosque) Nick Gazzard, (Holly Gazzard Trust) and the Mayor Of Gloucester will decide each month who will feature.

The aim is to get a big conversation going on social media, local radio, TV and newspapers about the good that is done in the city and encourage people to nominate who they think deserves recognition.

James Garrod from The National Star College will be coordinating the project.

So, if you would like to nominate someone, please email ourlifeglos@outlook.com or tweet your nomination to @ourlifeglos.

The first painting and story will be on my website on the launch date, which is on Tuesday 29 March at Eastgate Shopping Centre at 6pm.

The first nomination is Delroy Ellis from the charity Increase the Peace.

 

Feb 052015
 

 


A Good Man’s Miracle By Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864) 1844


 

Last year I was approached by Amberley Publishing in Stroud to write a book called Secret Gloucester, part of a series of ‘Secret’ books based around little known facts about places in the UK.  I was delighted to accept the commission and am now busy writing and researching for publication later this year.  Whilst researching Robert Raikes, founder of the Sunday School movement worldwide I came across this little gem which I thought I would share with you.

Nathaniel Hawthorne wrote this short story/essay about Mr Raikes in 1844.  He refers to Gloucester as ‘London’ but I have changed this to Gloucester in the text which I have reproduced in full below.  The street in question was St Catherines Street (where the cider pub is now).  I think it brings Gloucester to life and is a fascinating insight into the social conditions of the time.

“IN every good action there is a divine quality, which does not end with the completion of that particular deed but goes on to bring forth good works in an infinite series. It is seldom possible, indeed, for human eyes to trace out the chain of blessed consequences, that extends from a benevolent man’s simple and conscientious act, here on earth, and connects it with those labors of love which the angels make it their joy to pefform, in Heaven above. Sometimes, however, we meet with an instance in which this wonderful and glorious connection may clearly be perceived. It has always appeared to me, that a well-known incident in the life of Mr. Robert Raikes offers us one of the most hopeful and inspiring arguments, never to neglect even the humblest opportunities of doing good, as not knowing what vast purposes of Providence we may thereby subserve. This little story has been often told, but may here be related anew, because it so strikingly illustrates the remark with which we began.

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Oct 132014
 

A bit late I know but I’ve been busy!!

This year was the 20th Anniversary of the Heritage Open Day events. When I discovered this I was ashamed that I’d only been frequenting this gem of an event since 2009.  A veritable newbie.

This year I really enjoyed the Gloucester History Festival, (6-19September 2014).  Partly because I was asked to do a book talk and signing at the Folk Museum and was featured in this year’s Official Programme.  The talk went really well – I thought! – even though the printed ticket had the City Museum as the venue and consequently some people arrived late – not their fault!  An audience of about 40 people came to hear me speak about the research I undertook and what inspired me to write the novel.  I hadn’t done any public speaking in a very long time but surprised myself at how UN-nervous I was.  I’ve put this down to the fact that I was talking about something I know!

If you didn’t get to go to any events this year make a date in your diary for next year.  I can’t recommend it enough.

Heritage Open Days 10-13 September 2015.

The Gloucester History Festival usually takes place two weeks either side of these dates. 

Aug 272014
 

I should have written this post months ago but since the website has been undergoing some technical upgrades I never got round to it so it’s quite a long post but hopefully informative for anyone who is about to submit their precious manuscript to agents.

I finished my manuscript in March of 2013 – or so I thought!  Cautionary note here:  It wasn’t as ready as it should have been or I thought it was!

Having decided it was ready to send out I sent it to the Andrew Lownie Agency.  They were growing their fiction list and it seemed a good time to submit.  I got a great response and was asked to send in the full MS.  It was ultimately rejected.

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Sep 032013
 

August is a very chilled out month when nothing much happens and an indolence overtakes us all.  So it has been with me but September has kicked in and I’m ready to get going again and tell you what I’ve been up to.

Saturday 17 August I attended a Gloucester Civic Trust Tower Talk in St Michael’s Tower in Gloucester.

DSC_0001

The talk was being given by Ian Holt, a member of the Trust who was very knowledgeable, particularly about the early world history of the Jewish people.  I booked this talk many months ago as it is the subject of my next book tentatively entitled, Blood Libel, beginning in 1168 in the city of Gloucester when a young boy named Harold was found murdered.  The blame was placed on the Jewish community.  Ian Holt touched on this incident and many other fascinating events in the history of the Jews in Gloucester.  They were eventually expelled from the city in 1275 by Queen Eleanor who didn’t want any Jewish people living in her Dower towns – Gloucester being one of them.  Most of the community fled to Bristol and Hereford and as far as I can tell the community never quite recovered in numbers.  When the Synagogue was built and consecrated in Cheltenham in 1839 most of the community migrated there.

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Jul 242013
 

The characters in my book, City of Secrets, drink plenty of weak ale, local cider made from the Longney Russet apple and eat a variety of medieval food from roasted lark to frumenty to cheese made from the milk of Gloucester Cattle.  This food was popular in the middle ages in and around Gloucester.  So I thought I would find out what the present day Gloucester citizen liked to eat and what better place than the annual Gloucester Quays Food Festival.

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