August 30th, 2011

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The Black Church must respond to disaffected youth

I really like this article in The Voice by Marcia Dixon.

It is entitled "The Black Church must respond to disaffected youth" and argues that Church leaders have a big role to play in steering young rioters away from violence, crime and hopelessness.

Follow the link to read the article:
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The Faith Machine, Royal Court

The Faith Machine has just opened at the Royal Court (it runs from 25 August to 1 October). The Royal Court is another of my favourite theatres in London. It is pretty much THE best place for new writing, the ticket prices are very reasonable (all tickets on Monday are £10 and you can get in for £12 on other days), and all the seats in the theatre have good views. I am going to see this right at the end of its run so I won't be able to write my review/reaction to it in time to get people along to it but it sounds very interesting and I think it will be very good!

Cut and pasted from an email from the Royal Court:

The Faith Machine
by Alexi Kaye Campbell

On a beautiful September morning in New York Sophie forces Tom into a decision. The choice he makes, and the events of that day, will change their lives forever.

Travelling from America to Britain to a remote Greek island this epic new play explores the relationship between faith and capitalism and asks fundamental questions about the true meaning of love.

It is written by Alexi Kaye Campbell and directed by Jamie Lloyd.

The cast includes Ian McDiarmid, who played Maximus in Emperor and Galilean.

To read more about the production follow the link:

The Royal Court website is here:
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99% campaign: Young Londoners Leading Positive Lives

At a time when young people are being demonised, I would like to run positive stories about young people and their achievements and the contributions that they make to society and their communities.

I am starting with the 99% campaign, which is all about young Londoners leading positive lives. 99% of young Londoners do NOT commit serious youth violence.

We are young Londoners, leading positive lives.
We are not negative stereotypes.
We are the 99 per cent.

Cut and pasted from the 99% campaign website:

What is the 99% campaign?

The 99% campaign is a pan-London, youth-led, positive initiative that brings together key public, private and civil society organisations to dispel stereotypes about young people and make London a safer, more inclusive and cohesive place for all.

The project was developed by young Londoners under the auspices of the now defunct London Serious Youth Violence Board. The campaign is now run by the charity, Independent Academic Research Studies (IARS) and with the support of the Core Partners Group.

These are the key recommendations that the campaign is trying to implement. The recommendations are taken from the London Serious Youth Violence Board Final Report (2011).

Involve young people in the decision-making process.
Local and regional partners should continue to find ways to promote the voice of young people as sustainable solutions to serious youth violence are unlikely to emerge unless they reflect the priorities, energy and commitment of local communities, and in particular the voice of the young people who live in those communities. Based on the experience of the London Serious Youth Violence Board and its work with young people, it is recommended that statutory and non-statutory organisations and agencies should commit themselves to establishing, and demonstrating, clearly identifiable and accessible means for young people to directly feedback and influence on issues and decision making that impact on them.

Changing public perceptions of young people.
All partners need to understand that negative stereotyping; in the media in particular, can have a damaging effect on public perceptions but also on young people themselves, so far as limiting aspirations and life chances are concerned. All partners should ensure they promote a proportionate approach, whilst as the same time acknowledging that the vast majority of young people in London contribute actively and constructively to their schools and local communities.

Developing role models.
There shourl be further recognition of the importance of role models, especially those young people who have come from the same areas and backgrounds and have faced and overcome similar challenges to other young people at risk of serious youth violence.

The 99% campaign is a campaign through which the voice of young Londoners’ must be made to reach both general public and policymakers, in order to dispel negative stereotypes, as well as to shape the policies that aim to respond to their problems.

Follow the link to find out more about the campaign and to contact the team, and to see how young Londoners are contributing to the cleanup following the riots:
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Academics for Undershaw: Conan Doyle Museum and Centre for British and Irish Crime Writing

The Conan Doyle window in the Sherlock Holmes Pub
Photographer: Rakshita Patel

Mission Statement: To save Conan Doyle’s house for the Nation.

Undershaw in Surrey is a Grade II Listed Building commissioned to his own designs by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle in 1897. After Conan Doyle sold it thirty years later, it became a hotel, until bought by 'developers' in 2004. The house has been empty ever since and is being allowed to deteriorate, subject to a planning application to develop the site into multiple private residences.

Academics for Undershaw is an international group of more than 300 scholars supporting the idea of establishing a Conan Doyle Museum and Centre for British and Irish Crime Writing, with a library, conference facilities and perhaps a writer in residence, while conserving the house and restoring the grounds.

Please let us know if you support this aim at

My own personal view is that I fully support and endorse working towards a Conan Doyle Museum and Centre for British and Irish Crime Writing. It is important to me that Undershaw is saved for the Nation, and that includes access to the general public all year round.

David Charles Rose created and co-ordinates Academics for Undershaw and you can contact David at