Tuesday, 17 May 2016


When I was starting out acting I would say yes to any job, we should.  I was in a small co-operative agency in Nottingham and I'd regularly be put up for all sorts of little jobs.  Once I went to Matlock in Derbyshire to make a film made by a bloke in his caravan, on another occasion I was paid to be a witness that law students at Nottingham University could cross examine, but my favourite was Crimewatch.  Crimewatch (formerly Crimewatch UK) is a long-running and high-profile British television programme produced by the BBC, that reconstructs major unsolved crimes in order to gain information from the public which may assist in solving the case.

Crimewatch was one of my first television performances when I played "lad 1 in snooker hall".  All I remember was standing in a snooker hall one afternoon drinking tea.  The second time I did it I was cast as the victim, a bouncer from Cambridge who was shot in the back of the head on wasteland.  I spent the whole day with CID, the victim's girlfriend and his best mate.  The small crew moved all over Cambridge following his last known movements, until after returning from the shops there was a knock at the door and he went over the road to his death on a slice of wasteland.

Nobody saw anything.

What I loved was the extent I was involved.  I went into the police incident room and saw photos, I chatted to witnesses and police alike, I was allowed to ask questions about the man I was playing.  I had a long conversation with his girlfriend, who told me first hand what had happened.  I met his best friend who he'd been with minutes before his death.  12 hours later and I'm back on the train to London and thinking about the poor family that has no closure.  I'm putting the clues I have together and coming up with my theory.

That Thursday (Crimewatch night) I settled in my living room to watch.  I was shocked at how many of my friends watched texting "I've just seen you on Crimewatch" and "I always thought you were a trouble causer".  It was no longer about the victim, but about my ego, my acting, me on the telly.  I puffed my chest out and congratulated myself and carried on with life.

A couple of weeks later I received a call from the officer heading the enquiry.  He told me they had a few more leads but nothing substantial, but he said "what did you think about his girlfriend"?   "How do you mean?" I asked. "Did she say anything?" I told him what she had told me, what I remembered and then I said "But she's lying".
"What do you mean?" the copper asked.
"You can't kid a kidder, I have lied with the best of them and I know she's holding stuff back?" I said.  "Yea", he said "We know".

To date they still haven't found the murderer.

P.S. This episode was Claire Goose’s first job too.

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

Anti Social Media


I sometimes look at this Facebook and I think “What is this SHIT!” The bragging, the beauty, the brothers, the sisters, babies looking like Winston Churchill, rivers flowing, beaches glowing, walks, dinners……the endless dinners, shit grammer and spell mistakes, the sorrow (too much sorrow), red politics, anger I think, this is shit.

And I switch it off.
Bin It.
Delete the App.

Then, ten minutes or so pass and I think they must have missed me by now.  Someone must have liked it by now.  They must be worried sick, those waifs and strays, fighters & lovers, nurses, actors, builders and riders, sisters and cousins.  The thieves and liars, the ins and outers, mothers, adventurers, posties and people.

Because all you people are my kind of people, friends.

Tuesday, 10 May 2016


A 15 year old has been reported missing in Rochdale. He parted company with his sister between 3.30pm and 4pm telling her he was going for a walk along the Rochdale canal.  That was 3 days ago and he hasn't been seen since.

I heard the news on Sunday afternoon listening to Johnny Walker 'sound of the seventies' on the wireless.  He's missing the news woman said.  Missing and his family are concerned for his wellbeing.

Jo!  Do you know that lad?  On the towpath, with the black coat and hood up on the hottest day of the year?  He was lying in the shade of a bridge on the way out and walking on the way back.  I mentioned him to you, well I'm worried.  What if it were George or Billy?

We need to go and have a look.

We drove, retraced our steps, 15 miles, nothing.

As I closed my eyes last night all I could think about was the boy, cold, scared, alone and his Mum, alone.

I awoke early switched on the Mac to read the news.  The young lad had been found 10 miles away, seems the lad we saw was another youngster living rough.  Glad we moved on it though.