Oct 262014
 

Each year the festival brochure lands on my doormat and I sit with a cup of coffee and flick through the pages full of expectation and I am never disappointed.  This year was no exception.  With 135,000 tickets sold this year it has been hailed as the most successful festival so far.

I have to set myself a budget at the outset because it is so tempting to make more than a meal of this event.  It can quickly become more of a banquet.  My budget is quite small and this year I restricted myself to three events.  Two were Locally Sourced and one was of personal interest to me and connected to my latest book, Blood Libel.

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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.

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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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