The following feature was filmed at The Spotlight Mini Farm.
Spotlight Training and Media run an alternative education programme for 14-16 year olds who find it difficult to engage and learn in a normal school environment. During the programme with us the students learn in a variety of ways and become involved in several projects that benefit the environment and the local community. A group of year 10 students are just embarking on one such project, which has received funding from the Princes Trust, to build housing for animals and birds at the Spotlight Minifarm in Skelton. The project was visited by representatives of the Princes Trust, National Westminster Bank, The Royal Bank of Scotland and our M.P. Ashok Kumar, all supporters of this alternative form of education. The students will learn valuable skills during this project as well as the opportunity to gain a recognised qualification that will help them progress into college or employment.
Any school or parent who thinks an individual could benefit from this programme should contact either Ged Kirby or Kevin Bowes on 01287 280004 for further information.
Just a quick update to tell you about two new projects ongoing here at Spotlight Studio:
First up is animation guru Darren's latest collection of iClone works. If you've ever wanted to see Darren get his groove on whilst dressed as a bridesmaid, well now you can! And even despite this, a woman later falls in love with him on a romantic walk, and he even manages to find the time to host his own video blog update. A man of many talents then, and none of them on display here.
And now for something completely different, as Kevin continues his work on The Bunkhouse Project, interviewing and recording performances from a wealth of local country and western artists for an upcoming DVD release celebrating 40 years of The Bunkhouse country music club in Guisborough. Hit play on the youtube video below to see a couple of adverts jam-packed with clips of some of the live performances.
Well, not quite but you will presumably have noticed this shiny new entry into the ongoing chronicles of all that is life on the Spotlight Mini Farm, and about bloody time too since the last farm report was back on June 18th, 2007, some nine months ago.
Why the sudden spurt of life here at the blog? Well, the hectic Spotlight schedule has meant previous blogging bastions Darren and Tony are now far too busy drinking tea, smoking cigarettes and rocking out like the ghost of Hendrix to concern themselves with mucking in with the pigs, ducks, geese and so forth, and as the new boy it's fallen into my capable hands to pick up the pieces.
I've only been here since last Thursday and it was hectic enough that I needed four days off to recover (good thing Easter popped up then). Fast forward to today, just my second day at Spotlight and I've been thrown in at the deep end with my first trip up to the farm to meet the animals. Up in a mostly open field with the temperature at a chilly 4°C. It's been pretty windy too. Ah, excellent, it's also decided to snow.
Truth be told though, it was a pretty interesting trip. It's been years since I ventured up to an allotment of any sort (my Grandad has an allotment where he helps his mate Tony with his racing pigeons whilst also growing beetroot, cabbages and peas but I've long since past the age where the idea of mucking about in some soil or spending any decent amount of time with family members could be considered a fun afternoon out, preferring instead to sit in on blazing hot days watching Frasier re-runs, reading about long-forgotten 80's kids cartoons on Wikipedia and eating multipack bags of Space Raiders - that they've put single packs up from 10p to 15p is a crime against humanity).
But I digress.
Speaking of eating though, we went up at about noon which meant feeding time for the animals which was certainly something to see.
Jealousy runs rife amongst the geese it seems as I noticed one goose (lets call him "Sweet Stevie" for now) drop a perfectly fine French loaf after spying another goose (lets call him "Malice Mascarado" for clarity's sake) with a loaf of his own. It didn't matter that Mascardo's loaf was smaller, half-eaten and covered in a mixture of goose saliva and wet mud, Sweet Stevie had seen what he wanted and he helped himself. Having later spotted some ducks attempt to prevent some other ducks getting back into their pen, it's clear to see there's some kind of hierarchy running rife amongst out feathery friends.
The pigs meanwhile just fought and bickered with each other over who got the last slice of stale croissant. Just like lunchtime back at Spotlight really.