Art Attack! Art, Loho and Lutopia

In a way I take comfort from the way that some people readily presume that I am dead if I haven’t posted in a while. Certainly, that’s the approach taken by my mother, who recently got quite worried given that I hadn’t posted on Facebook for a couple of days, and hadn’t updated this blog in over a month. I apologise to all: I’ve been busy (rather than dead), and my conscience is all the more pricked for having missed this year’s annual High Town Festival over the weekend of 15-16 July, which I learn from the Friends of High Town was super-plus good.

High Town (or 'Hightown') Festival sign in front of the now sadly fire-ravaged premises of the former pub, the Railway Tavern.

High Town (or ‘Hightown’) Festival sign in front of the now sadly fire-ravaged premises of the former pub, the Railway Tavern.

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A Lutonian gem: the Fair Deal World Shop

After ranging as far as Luton Hoo in my last post, my thirst to share Luton’s exotic outposts with you, dear reader, remains unslated. In which vein, a focus on Stopsley seems long overdue. I was tempted to include this post within my ‘café culture’ series (series of one…) because I do have a review to make of Coffee Express, but I’m going to save that for later.

The real star and focus of this piece is the Fair Deal World Shop, Luton’s very own fairtrade store, dedicated entirely to selling ethical goods (food, cleaning products, homewares and gifts) and proving that it is just about possible to sustain an avowedly ethical business within Luton. The Fair Deal World Shop is an unexpected treasure, and it needs our support.

Small but marvellous: the Fair Deal World Shop, in Stopsley village.

Small but marvellous: the Fair Deal World Shop, in Stopsley village.

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Luton: It’s easy to leave

There’s a joke you often hear when you live in Luton, which runs, ‘Well, at least Luton is easy to leave.’ It certainly is. Luton is one of the best-connected towns in the UK. My London friends are always surprised that Luton to London by train can take as little as 22 minutes. That compares very favourably with any number of outlying districts of London itself.

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