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04 JANUARY 2013

What's the Value of Culture Today?

"Melvyn Bragg and his guests discuss the meaning and value of culture in the twenty–first century. In a programme recorded in front of an audience at Newcastle's Literary and Philosophical Society, Melvyn and the panel consider whether Matthew Arnold's assessment of culture as 'the great help out of our present difficulties' still has any relevance, almost 150 years after it was written."

(Melvyn Bragg, 2013)

"The Value of Culture: Two Cultures", Radio broadcast, Episode 5 of 5, Duration: 42 minutes, First broadcast: Friday 04 January 2013, Presenter/Melvyn Bragg, Producer/Thomas Morris for the BBC Radio 4, UK.

Photo credit: J. Russell, Strobel Lab, Yale University 2009



21st century • assessment of culture • chimpanzeeChristopher Fraylingcommunity regenerationcreative industriescultural formscultural hegemony • culture today • culture war • Department of Science and Art • everyday practice • everything that is not nature • expertise • great help out of our present difficulties • high culturehuman activities • Literary and Philosophical Society • Literary and Philosophical Society of Newcastle upon Tyne • Matt Ridley • Matthew Arnold • meaning of culture • Melvyn Bragg • New Caledonian Crow • Newcastle • not nature • novelspanel discussionspopular culture • recorded in front of an audience • The Value of Culture (radio)Thomas Kuhn • Tiffany Jenkins • value of culture


Simon Perkins
06 JANUARY 2010

Russell Group: 20 leading UK universities

"The Russell Group represents the 20 leading UK universities which are committed to maintaining the very best research, an outstanding teaching and learning experience and unrivalled links with business and the public sector."

(Russell Group)

[In the UK the Russell Group represent the traditional and 'red brick' universities and the 'Million+ group' represents the new or 'Plate Glass' universities.There is a similar equivalence in Australia between the more traditional 'sandstone universities' and the 'new' or 'Post–1992 universities'.]



Simon Perkins
26 JULY 2009

Jimmy Forsyth: Photographer who chronicled vanishing community life in the UK north-east

"The Tyneside amateur photographer Jimmy Forsyth, who has died aged 95, produced an acclaimed portrait of industrial working–class life in Britain.
in the early 1950s he heard rumours of plans to demolish Elswick and Scotswood Road. A whole way of life was under threat, and Jimmy imagined that he could capture the spirit of the community through photography. Thus he began in 1954, with a second–hand box camera and no formal training, his epic project to produce a portrait of the area by a trusted insider.

Mindful of posterity, he took a systematic approach – his images are indexed and his subjects carefully identified. Crucially, the task also saved Jimmy from unemployment. He assembled the prints, processed by Boots or a local chemist, in tartan–covered albums, and including the price of the films, his photography probably consumed a considerable part of his £2–a–week National Assistance money. Often he would sell people their prints for half a crown to fund the next roll of film. In an effort to improve his finances, Jimmy opened a shop in 1956 in Pine Street, but his generosity in providing goods 'on tick' soon forced him to sell up.

When the bulldozers eventually came to Elswick in the late 1950s, they inspired a period of intense activity for Jimmy, who stayed until the last moment to document the painful process of demolition. He even photographed the demolition men and the families left behind, until, he said, there was a knock at 356 Scotswood Road, where he was living: 'You'd better move out. We're doing this block next.'"
(The Guardian, 16 July 2009)

[Jimmy Forsyth, 1957. Scotswood Teddy Boys]



Simon Perkins
24 MARCH 2009

Newcastle has a talking sign system to help blind and partially sighted people find their way around the city centre

"Newcastle City Council is currently working in partnership with various organisations across the city to develop a scheme called RNIB React. RNIB React is a talking sign system that helps people who are blind and partially sighted find their way around town centres, safely and independently.

Speaker units have been set up on a chosen route around Newcastle City Centre. Users carry a small fob device, which triggers the unit to announce a message when within range.

17 units have been installed in the city centre. They are located on Northumberland Street, Blackett Street, Percy Street and St Thomas Street. There are further units located within metro stations and leading to the RVI Hospital."


accessibilityaudible informationblinddisabilitydisabledNewcastle • Newcastle City Council • partially sighted • RNIB ReactUKwayfinding


Simon Perkins

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