NIGEL THORNTON: Boozers not losers in Peterborough

Thornton on Thursday column with Peterborough Telegraph's deputy editor Nigel Thornton -
Thornton on Thursday column with Peterborough Telegraph's deputy editor Nigel Thornton -
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Shame-facedly I have an admission to make – I’ve never been to Peterborough Beer Festival.

As confessions go, I don’t suppose it’s much of one particularly as I don’t like beer – or at least not beer that has twigs in it or ale that could do a decent job weather-proofing my fence.

And before the real ale-ers march on Telegraph Towers demanding my head on a bottle of Mrs Trumpy Bottom’s Golden Badger Juice, I come in peace.

I have nothing but admiration for the festival – from the organisers who must put in a huge amount of work each year to the punters who get happily horizontal yet cause less concern to Her Majesty’s Constabulary than a WI trip to Norfolk Lavender.

Perhaps it’s my job , but I’m quite cynical about human nature and each year I’m staggered that a vast number of people crowd into a tent, drink copious amounts of alcohol and yet there is not even a sniff of trouble.

So to all who make the beer festival something that Peterborough can be truly proud of I raise a glass to you... apologies I’m afraid it’s a glass of Spanish red.

When I first came to Peterborough some 20 years ago the city had a bit of a reputation as a cultural desert.

And while I don’t think the city is quite ready to bid to be the next European Capital of Culture there has been a vast improvement in its cultural and leisure offering.

There are still some significant gaps (where is that decent sized concert venue Peterborough craves?) but the city now has a lot to offer particularly on the festival front.

When you take established events like the beer festival and Burghley which starts today and add in newer ones such as the Heritage and Arts festivals, it’s clear Peterborough is now punching its weight in the events world.

Credit must also go to the city council and Vivacity who have worked hard to put Peterborough on the cultural map.

All we need now is a red wine festival...

That’s not funny

I think it’s fair to say that the commenters on the PT website are not always the best advert for the human race.But you would have thought the story of a local lad making good in the shape of comedian Darren Welsh who won a coveted best joke award at the Edinburgh Fringe would have warmed hearts.Not a bit of it.

Darren’s winning effort “I just deleted all the German names off my phone. It’s Hans free’’ illicited the following mealy mouthed response.

“The name Hans is actually of Scandinavian origin, so the joke is flawed. Slow clap.’’

Dearie me and we think the Germans have no sense of humour, sorry, I mean Scandinavians.

Diary Of A Bad Dad

There comes a moment in every child’s life when you as a parent realise the time is ripe for some discipline.
 And that moment comes at a specific, measurable point – it is when for the first time your child decides it is more fun to climb UP rather than slide DOWN a slide (I think they get bonus points for the number of younger children they force to wait at the top).

Toddler T was quite a timid child physically, but not any longer. She is now a miniature female Evel Knievel, game for any daredevil stunt – including climbing up slides.

She is generally a well-behaved little girl but occasionally gets exasperated with mum or dad - usually to do with the supply (or rather lack of it) and (her) demand for more chocolate ice cream/stickers/episodes 
of Alvin and The Chipmunks.

Oddly, she has developed self-disciplining.When she “loses it’’ with us she stomps off to her room as if her departure is a punishment for us!

We’ve never banished her to her room so I don’t know where she gets it from. The first time this happened me and Mrs T just looked it at each other and uttered in unison “result!’’

It doesn’t last long – five minutes later she’s back as if nothing ever happened!