Sunday, November 16, 2008


Last night I was invited to watch Billy Smart's Circus in Bedford, which was quite entertaining but nothing like the circuses I remembered seeing years ago as a child.

Billy Smart started his Circus in 1946, and Circus visits used to be a great treat with lots of exciting and magical acts including animals - elephants, monkeys, lions, horses etc. At one stage Bill Smart had 200 animals on tour. However over the years the vociferous animal rights lobby complained loudly about the cruel treatment of animals in circuses and in the end they were banned altogether.

Today there are no animals just human circus performers who come from all over the world - everywhere except the UK! We had Chico Rico, a Mexican clown, Russian and French trapeze artists, a Mongolian foot juggler and illusionists and acrobats from Italy and Kazakhstan.


The Global and National Enterprise Week kicks off on Monday - a national celebration of business with thousands of events across the UK to inspire young people to take an interest in entrepreneurship. In 2007 there were 5,000 events involved 500,000 young people. This year's theme is 'Make Your Mark' and a week of action-packed events will be organised locally by Bedfordshire County Council, including:

Monday 17 November - Entrepreneurship Challenge (North Beds) at Marston Vale Forest Centre for talented Year 8/9 pupils to learn entrepreneurial skills by creating a visual business plan with help from local entrepreneurs.

Wednesday 19 November - Developer for a Day at Dame Alice Harpur School, Bedford. A Masterclass Workshop on opportunities for women in the construction industry for Year 9 girls.
Making Dough - at Hastingsbury Upper School, Kempston, in which 7 Upper Schools take part in an interactive programme to help young people develop finance, marketing and business skills.

Thursday 20 November - 'Dragon's Den for Young Entrepreneurs'
Competition in Flitwick for Year 10 & 13 pupils from various schools.

Bedfordshire Music
On Wednesday 12 November, 'Tenforu' one of Bedfordshire's youth chamber orchestras, was invited to take part in the National Proms Concert at the Royal Albert Hall. Tenforu comprises 10 talented young musicians playing wind and string instruments and has been successful in regional and national rounds of the National Festival for Youth during the past year.

It was a great honour for Tenforu to be invited to play in this Concert, which showcased the very best of musical talent from around the UK, and highlights the top quality young musicians we have in Bedfordshire, one of the UK's smallest counties.

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