Well what do you do when you move somewhat recklessly to the South Coast later in life? Join things try and cope with retirement, make some new friends, but in the meantime blogging has been brilliant.
I write about anything I find interesting, news, reviews, the people I meet, special events, visits to interesting places around Brighton, London and sometimes in France. I sometimes include courses I have attended and some of my poems.
Moving to the South Coast.
In 20o8, I was traumatised by the loss of my mother, who went into hospital for a minor operation and died. Over the years we had often worked together but towards the end of her life I become her carer.
The shock of losing her in such sad circumstances was unbearable. I gave up my job and soon afterwards moved to the South Coast with my long term partner.
To try and move on I did a course at Sussex Uni. in creative writing and two at Arvon. As I come from a family of marionette makers and performers I drifted into running puppet workshops in the local library. Later I attended a course in standup comedy with Jill Edwards and performed my set at a New Acts Night at the Komedia and did several gigs for charity.
I have often started new things so no surprise that I found myself running open mic poetry sessions in Rottingdean for two years. But by this time writing poetry myself had become a passion. I went on several courses and started to send of poems to competition and magazines. I had three published in Writers News and compiled a collection with illustrations.
Please click on the link that follows to get to latest post
However you could read on and discover the one and only advertisement on this site for my poetry collections and/or read my bio at the end of the page.
The Puppeteer’s Daughter
‘Don’t Throw Away the Daisies’ is my first collection of poetry and available in City Books 23 WESTERN ROAD, HOVE. TEL: 01273 725306 • and the Open Art Cafe in Nevill Road, Rottingdean.
John McCullough ‘Ann’s poetry covers the big topics of love and death with originality. Take for instance the title poem which is full of surprises yet also wonderfully poignant.
Kiersty Boon says – ‘This collection of poems, fully illustrated by the author, is a wonderful journey from a magical childhood of puppets and seaside towns. The delicacy of the difficult stages of life and memories experienced are offset with humorous anecdotes and magical tales for young and old alike.’
Illustrations in full colour proved to too expensive to produce but it is still available from Amazon or from the Open Art Cafe on request at £18
The West Pier – pen and ink – Robin my eldest s0n as a child – 0il on heavy paper.
‘Best to blow your own trumpet, no one else will’ as my old granny used to say!
I have written from an early age including books of plays for Pelham Puppets. However most of my writing as an adult has had to be done in my spare time but I have had some modest successes – a piece published in the Sunday Times Magazine – a play called ‘Travelling Nowhere’ performed at the Young Vic – pieces read on Radio 4 – articles in teaching magazines – short stories in anthologies. A few years ago I became a freelance journalist and a member of the Society of Women Writers and Journalists.
Recently I started to write poetry in my Beach Hut. We bought the hut twenty five years ago when my partner lived in Hove and they were less trendy. Fishermen kept rods in them and families just had rugs and sandwiches. https://annperrinspoetry.wordpress.com/
Some of my poems are now on a podcast which was an effort to move with the times.
2015 and 2016 – I was lucky enough to get a mini residency in Postman’s Park in the City of London courtesy of the Poetry School and The London Parks and Gardens Trust.
Bio – I was born in London in the blitz with a cleft palate and could not talk clearly for several years. As the daughter of puppeteers we lived in Highgate but I spent much of my life helping with our shows at private parties and in seaside towns. My parents once had the honour of entertaining Her Majesty the Queen at Buckingham Palace. I had always pulled the curtains in between the acts, but my parents insisted that because Grandpa had fought in the Great War he should do the curtain pulling that day instead!
As an adult I went into Variety, touring with Hylda Baker, appearing on the same bill as Max Miller, Graham Stark and Alma Cogan. I worked on the TV series ‘The Telegoons’ and with my family and our marionettes on the film ‘Oh What a Lovely War’ on Brighton’s West Pier.
I later married, had two wonderful sons, became a single parent and worked, studied and developed a new career in teaching. I have taught in primary schools and taught art in a comprehensive school. I have been a community education development worker and a senior manager in Adult Education. In later life I retrained as a therapist working with a cancer charity, for an MS help centre and for two Primary Care Trusts. I also ran courses in mid and later life planning, presentation skills etc.
Since retiring I have continued to write and also to conserve our 2oo marionettes that either I or my family had performed with over the years.
Our new allotment on the Weald
Another lucky break in retirement was getting a tiny allotment plot after three years on the waiting list. Basically it was a muddy field with an abandoned pond but it gave us a new lease of life.
Film making – I am a keen amateur film maker. Please click on the following link to view my films
Or maybe simply enjoy this one?
Virginia Woolf’s garden.
‘The Hole in the Wall’ from the sublime to the ridiculous but I am rather fond of this film which is of a picture book for children I once made. It jumped through several hoops with Oxford University Press years ago but in the end the editor who was interested left and the idea was dropped.
Films associated with our marionettes please click on the following link
Alice in Wonderland – was the first and hardest one to make. It is my favourite and was made a couple of years before my mother died She had climbed up into the loft of my house in South London to operate some of the characters in her late 70s. The boat scene in the garden was a labour of love and took forever.
Puppet circus on youtube
A reconstruction based on our popular puppet circus from the 50s and 60s but without the famous clowns’ repartee which was never recorded.
A circus was always part of our show which included a strong man and an acrobat on a horse. We once had the honour of performing for the Queen at her first children’s party after the war at Buckingham Palace in 1952.
A taste of our circus – please click on the following link
A dedicated website for our marionette making and performance developed with my youngest son Paul 15 years ago.
please click on the link http://www.puppethouse.co.uk/
Our marionette collection has puppets we have made and performed with from 1949. The clowns, musicians, characters from ‘Alice in Wonderland’.
This Alice appeared in an Ice Show in Morcambe in the 50s
Please click on
https://annperrin.wordpress.com/puppethouse/ for a museum update
In 2013 – As part of their commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the outbreak of the Great War BBC South East filmed the conservation of the marionettes and interviewed me about my family’s role in performing with them in the film ‘Oh What a Lovely War’. We all went to the Duke of York’s Cinema for a special showing of the original film.
In 2015 – There are artifacts and posters from the various films, the car made by Emett, a Chitty Chitty Bang Bang . I know because I have been setting up our contribution with the dedicated and creative Marcus Bagshaw, the curator at the Grange, and had a quick preview of the wonderful things which will be on display.
Lastly a freebie – as a therapist I made the following tape . It has been used many times for relaxation but is also worth trying for pain control. I call it Self Hypnosis for Positive Health – there are two options -you can close your eyes and just listen, or watch the images that I added more recently..
Qualifications – My formal schooling was late and often disrupted. I have also worked all my life so my one and only O’level was gained at 30 studying part time. Luckily a grant to study for a Teaching Certificate followed and then a BA from the OU. Several years later an M.Sc in Life Course Development from Birkbeck – London University studying part time again and with a grant. It is really sad that such opportunities are now denied so many adults in this so called modern age.
A change in direction however meant more qualifications were needed, by which time I could paid for and study Hypnotherapy. I am also a Master Practitioner in NLP – Neuro Linguistic Programming.
General family support Alan my long suffering partner often proof reads my posts (you can usually tell when he doesn’t) Robin my eldest son has a sports massage practice in Biggin Hill, and is a racquetball coach and regularly gives sensible advice. My youngest son has an IT company in and gives me all technical support I need for all my websites.
I have two lovely daughters in law and three grandchildren but I seldom mention any of my family in my posts unless I have asked them if it is OK. I like to respect their privacy.
If you got this far, thank you for your patience. If you require further information or advice on any of the topics please contact me by commenting on this page.
Thank you. Ann