The 1 July issue of the UK Week doesn’t contain the superb choice items that feature in some issues. But some smiles, I hope. Here are a few of my favourites:
It must be true, I read it in the tabloids. Carly O’Brien always wanted a spectacular wedding dress and last weekend she got it: a frock so vast it took 20 people an hour and a half to push her through the church door and up the aisle. The £25,000 dress had 30 layers covered in 3,000 crystals, weighed 25 stone and was 8 feet wide, leaving no room for her father, a farmer, to accompany her up the aisle. Carly, 16, spent nine and a half hours getting into the dress, and was so exhausted by the end of the service that she had to be carried out by the groom, 17 year old Michael Coffey, together with 14 relatives. "She couldn’t walk in the dress", said a guest, "but it was well worth it".
[keywords: £25,000, farmer, 16].
After that, I need an antidote: Pick of the week’s gossip. Billie Piper… split up with Chris Evans, whose media interests are said to be worth £30 million, two years ago, but they have remained devoted friends, and are waiting for a no-fault divorce so neither has to blame the other. "We didn’t want to accuse each other of being arseholes" she told the Radio Times. "I’m not taking a penny from him. I think that’s disgusting."
[Ms Piper is a rich and successful actress and singer, but I appreciate her sentiment.]
Finally, It wasn’t all bad. Residents of Stratford-upon-Avon awoke to a mysterious dawn chorus last Sunday, as a flotilla of hot-air balloons serenaded them with music and literature. The Sky Orchestra, commissioned by the RSC, played dream-like music from speakers in seven balloons, while Patrick Stewart and Janet Suzman read from The Tempest and A Midsummer Night’s Dream."I must say that my first thought was an ice-cream van", said resident Mary Henderson. "But then I realised it was coming from the sky. It was a wonderful start to the day."
[I have never forgotten Janet Suzman’s Clytemnestra, with her enthusiasm for dispatching perceived enemies, in the RSC’s magnificent "The Greeks", years ago, which I saw in my former life. A long way from love poetry in the heavens. As Chrissie Hynde is currently singing on our CD (good ceiling-painting music for the MP) "some things change, some stay the same".]