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I went to look at the City of Manchester Stadium as a possible event venue yesterday morning. As always, I parked at one end of the stadium and the conferencing facilties where right on the other side. Although the stadium is now the home of Manchester City football club (I didn’t see Sven!) the conferencing facilities are not in any way jingoistic or football orientated. As part of this search I had telephone Old Trafford, of Man United fame, and stopped the conversation within about 2 mintues. The ‘hold music’ consisted of football songs about Man United and bits of commentary on games. I interupted his sales pitch with – ‘There is no point going on with this conversation, that music has annoyed me and I think the attitude will alienate half of the people we want to come, so sorry’. Anyway, the City of Manchester Stadium, where the Commonwealth Games were held seemed to be smart, slick and hopefully we’ll have a successful event there.

I took a half day’s leave in the afternoon and went to Haworth of Bronte fame to hear a talk by Margaret Drabble the novelist on the influence of the Brontes on her work. She was very good, funny and certainly knows her literature, or so I thought. I went with a retired professor of English Literature, who is a Bronte researcher. ‘Well she was wrong about that bit of Wuthering Heights, it was in the January 2 months before the baby was born that, that happened’. Somtimes you can know too much.

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