What’s the connection between 12 old folk trapped on top floor of a care home in the NE of Scotland and The Clash?

Life can sometimes throw up some very bizarre connections.

You may well have seen on the TV news at the weekend or read about the care home in Stonehaven, Aberdeenshire, where 12 OAPs have been stuck on the top floor since Xmas Day due to a lift breakdown.
12 Trapped since Xmas Day by lift breakdown

As it happens I have some connection with the said establishment.

First, my sister works there.

Second, I’m very familiar with the lift in question, as I have been up in it many times. I should explain.

When I was growing up, I had friend called Duncan Eddie (now the Reverend Duncan Eddie as it happens). His mother was the matron at the home, so he and his parents lived in a flat on the third floor.

Duncan and I were big music fans. Duncan had the luxury of a very fine hi-fi unit, so I used to take my LPs round there to give em a good listen. I was more of an orthodox rocker, with a liking for Queen, Thin Lizzy and Led Zeppelin. Duncan was a big Bowie fan, and introduced me to Iggy Pop. However, when punk arrived in late 76 (I read Sounds, he read the NME), all bets were off. We used to make sure our meagre resources went as far as possible for LP buying by agreeing in advance who would get what. So Duncan got The Clash’s first LP the week it came out and I bought The Stranglers. The Buzzcocks Another Music was on his list, and I got Nevermind The Bollocks. When the Sex Pistols appeared on TOTP with Pretty Vacant, we both ran round to each others place to confirm that we had seen the biggest event of our lives in a state of heady excitement.

Seeing Clashfarquhar House on the TV at the weekend brough back memories on a different time – , growing up in the back of beyond in the North East of Scotland, the arrival of punk in 1977 made two teenage boys think that we were on the brink of a revolution – and we were the only 2 people in the town that were aware of it. The sweet naviete of youth.




Telewest TV Drive – first look

Took delivery this morning of our shiny new Telewest TV Drive. Clearly viewing habits in the Smith household are about to change forever.

We had a very helpful Telewest engineer who gave us a quick 5 min demonstration of all the new features. I’d read a few reports that said the Telewest TV Drive would not be as user friendly as Sky+ – having never used Sky+ I can’t comment on its ease of use – but the Telewest device seems pretty easy to me. And it works! Freezing live TV, etc is all very straightforward – but the ability to record 2 channels simultaneously while watching a third is very cool. A nice big 160GB hard drive should give 80 hours of recording time. And its HD ready. Obviously not much HD content available yet, but the HD picture quality is v. impressive. Roll on the World Cup!

One thing I hadn’t realised is that you can actually transfer content from the hard drive to an external DVD recorder. I’d assumed for copyright reasons, they wouldn’t allow you to do this – in fact I need to look at the back of the device to see what other outputs it has.

I’ll report back further after a few more days of road testing – but first impressions are very good.

The TV revolution has begun.



Richard Delevan’s new arrival

Link: Richard Delevan’s sicNotes: What I’ve Been Up To.

Congrats to Richard on the arrival of his son Fionn Fox – Richard and I worked together back at Brodeur in 2000. He is that rare breed of PR who moved into journalism and is now a highly respected socio/political commentator in the Irish national press.


People Technology PR

New face at Object – Rod de St Croix

Good to have Rod on board.


…Rod de St Croix appointed as PR director…

Shepherd’s Bush, London – 7th March 2006 – Object Marketing, the integrated marketing consultancy, has hired Rod de St Croix (39) as PR director. In this newly created role, Rod will work alongside the
agency’s co-founder Andrew Smith to grow and develop the PR practice. 

Rod joins Object Marketing from Band & Brown where he was associate
board director. Prior to this he worked for several years as an
independent PR consultant advising B2B technology and online firms. He
began his PR career in 1995 with Brodeur Worldwide. Prior to this, he was an analyst with International Data Corporation.

Commenting on his appointment, de St Croix says: “I will be working
closely with the senior team here to grow the client base, whilst also
developing integrated campaigns that have a creative edge, and that
work hard for clients and generate tangible results. In addition, I
will be helping clients to reach beyond pure media relations to capture
the attention of the analyst and investment communities. I am looking
forward to making an important contribution to Object’s continuing

Object Marketing co-founder Andrew Smith says: “2006 promises to be an
important milestone in our growth and Rod will play a vital role in
helping us to achieve our targets. We welcome him as a key member of
the team.”

About Object Marketing 

Object Marketing is a fully integrated marketing consultancy, based
in London, UK, offering clients strategic and implementational support
through the entire marketing mix.

Object’s sector expertise spans technology, financial services and FMCG
markets. Current clients include business performance management
software vendor Hyperion, leading Internet security specialist Zone
Labs, and MySQL, developer of the world’s most popular open source