Three Decades of Service

Firefighter Pheric Curphey celebrated 30 years of dedicated service earlier this week, having first joined in 1991.

This comes just a week since colleague David Craine also marked three decades in the island’s Fire Service,

Speaking of his time as a Firefighter, Pheric said: ‘Times have changed a fair bit since I joined aged 18. The late Dougie Mayne (Station Officer at Kirk Michael station) popped around to my house the day before I officially started, handed me an alerter and said, “Don’t come if it goes off before midnight, or you won’t get paid”. I didn’t have to wait long.November 5th 1991 I got my baptism of fire. A big gorse fire up above the Wild Life Park. This is a picture my mum took when I eventually got home.

‘Joining the service was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made; I’ve learnt many new skills and made friends for life with so many fantastic people. I consider myself very lucky to have been given the opportunity to serve and I will continue to do so. Thank you to everyone who has supported me along the way.’

Free Books

Schools and libraries are being gifted copies of a book that collects together art depicting and celebrating our UNESCO Biosphere.

Ellyn: A Tale of Manx Contemporary Art accompanied the recent exhibition, staged by the Isle of Man Arts Council. Ellyn is Manx for art.

UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man and the Arts Council are gifting copies of the book to every school and every public library in the Isle of Man. DEFA Minister Clare Barber today presented a copy of the book to DEFA’s neighbouring St John’s Primary School.

She said: ‘Under its local strategy, Working Together for a Sustainable Future, UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man encourages us to appreciate all that is special about our Biosphere and celebrate it creatively.  The Ellyn project is a great example of that. Curating such a vast and varied collection of art was a wonderful achievement by the Isle of Man Arts Council in conjunction with the Biosphere team and it was fascinating to see how our talented artists responded to the challenge and how they depicted our Island and our Biosphere.

‘The book will enable generations of people to look back on the exhibition, view how it captured the Island at this time, and be inspired by it in their own artistic endeavours.’

Bark’s Album

Sam Barks’ new album ‘Into The Uknown’ will be available to stream this Friday, November 12. The album includes covers of some of Barks’ favourite songs from musicals from the last 10 years.

Volunteer for RNLI?

The island’s RNLI is looking for a Volunteer Water Safety Officer. The WSO is involved in the design and implementation of the Community Lifesaving Plan, liaising closely with Area Lifesaving Managers and local lifeboat station teams. A Community Lifesaving Plan is aimed at reducing fatalities and serious incidents by targeting particular ‘at risk’ groups with specifically targeted interventions. 

This volunteer opportunity would suit somebody who has an understanding of marine based and waterside activity on Isle of Man and the surrounding area. Another desirable attribute is an understanding of or experience in education delivery. 

For more info on this, click here.

Safe Standing Trial

Chelsea’s Premier League game against Liverpool at Stamford Bridge on 2 January will mark the return of standing to the English top flight after nearly 30 years.  Premier League clubs Manchester United, Manchester City, Tottenham and Chelsea and Championship side Cardiff have all had their applications to be part of a safe standing trial approved.  Since 1994, grounds in the first and second tiers of the English football pyramid have been required by law to be all-seaters.

‘I’m pleased to approve these five clubs as early adopters of licensed safe standing areas for the second half of the season,’ said sports minister Nigel Huddleston.

Standing in English football’s top two divisions was outlawed following recommendations made in the Taylor Report into the 1989 Hillsborough disaster, which cost 97 Liverpool fans their lives. In recent seasons, campaigners have called for standing to be reintroduced. Barrier or rail seating has been developed to provide seats that can be converted to standing areas when desired. The pilot will be monitored by the independent firm CFE Research, and its findings will be provided to the government for a decision on a possible wider roll-out of safe standing for next season. Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Tottenham and Wolves have all had rail seating installed at their grounds.

Trump Decision Next Year

Former President Donald Trump, in an exclusive interview with Fox News, said he will ‘probably’ wait until after the 2022 midterm elections to formally announce whether he will run for president in 2024.

‘I am certainly thinking about it and we’ll see,’ Trump said. ‘I think a lot of people will be very happy, frankly, with the decision, and probably will announce that after the midterms.’ He added: ‘A lot of great people who are thinking about running are waiting for that decision, because they’re not going to run if I run.’

If Trump does run again, it looks unlikely he will ask former Veep Mike Pence to join him on the ticket as he has spoken about working with different men and women to be his vice-president candidate. However, there is talk in America that Mr Pence could himself make a bid for the Whitehouse.

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