September 16th, 2011

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Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy out on general release from today (Friday 16 September)

Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy, Benedict Cumberatch's new film, goes on general release in the UK as of today.

I really was not at all fussed about seeing this film, because I thought that it was about the Cold War and spying. I don't much care for spy films (except the excellent BBC drama "Cambridge Spies"). But then captivebird told me that TTSS was not just about Cold War spying – it was about love, loyalty, trust, loss, betrayal, friendship, duty and double-crossing, When she told me that, I started salivating. So I will be going to see this film just as soon as I can - but that might not be until the back end of next week.

In the meantime, I will be relying on the twin gospels of Empire and the Telegraph, both of which have given it 5 stars.

Cut and pasted from Empire:
London, the 1970s: After a fiasco of a covert operation, British Intelligence spymaster Control (Hurt) and his right-hand man George Smiley (Oldman) are sacked. Then shocking but persuasive information that a Soviet mole has penetrated to the heart of the secret service prompts the Whitehall wallahs to task Smiley with spying on the spies.


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Philip Lawrence Awards: Get your nominations in now!

The Philip Lawrence Awards was one of the programmes I was leading on when I was working on gangs, guns, and knives in the Violent and Youth Crime Prevention Unit at the Home Office. I will be honest and upfront and say it was the one aspect of the job I felt most passionately about and cared most strongly for. I supported the Awards 100% because they were about recognising and celebrating the positive things that young people do to make a real difference in their communities.

Background to the Philip Lawrence Awards

Head teacher Philip Lawrence, who was murdered in 1995 whilst protecting a pupil outside his school in London, believed that every child was capable of greatness. His widow, Frances Lawrence, continues Philip's legacy by championing young people and their achievements and she has done this by establishing the Philip Lawrence Awards.

Now in its fourteenth year, the awards celebrate the positive difference young people aged 11 to 20 years old make in their communities across the UK. The awards are funded by the Home Office and managed by leading crime reduction charity Nacro.

How you can get involved

If you know a young person making a difference to their communities, then nominate them for the Philip Lawrence Awards. The deadline for submission is 30th September 2011. Follow the link to the dedicated website for more information:

Read the full story on the Operation Black Vote website - it features a quote by yours truly (ie me!):
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Maggie's London Night Hike is today (Friday 16 September)

Full details are here:

Sponsor me here:

Information about Maggie's
Maggie's runs cancer caring centres. Maggie's is about empowering people to live with, through and beyond cancer by bringing together professional help, communities of support and building design to create exceptional centres for cancer care.

Maggie's are here: