We follow prolific charity campaigner Rod Bond as he films scenes in Manchester and Cheshire for his upcoming movie Homeless Millionaire. With exclusive behind-the-scenes access, we follow Rod Bond across various filming locations in Manchester and Cheshire and get to see the actor’s unique preparations for the role. Supporting the homelessness and housing charity Shelter, we follow Rod Bond deep into the intricacies of the production and witness first-hand the plight of Manchester’s homeless community. The actor discusses aims to raise awareness around the problem of homelessness and the causes of this social issue. We also take a look at Rod Bond’s charity initiatives which stemmed from his time working with Shelter.
From Cheshire to Manchester
Playing the role of real-life millionaire businessman Alan Huntington, the movie tells the tale of his twisted journey from riches to rags. Left destitute having fallen victim to an elaborate tax scam involving corrupt HMRC officials, Alan Huntington finds himself homeless on the streets of Manchester. In scenes filmed before us, we see Rod Bond wandering Manchester city centre’s streets in the dark of the night. “I’ve spent many nights with homeless people who have to sleep rough in the city centre, every night,” said Rod Bond as he discussed his preparations for the role. “We’ve also held extensive discussions for plans for a soup kitchen to be established in Manchester city centre, led by Shelter. This will enable the charity to reach out to homeless people in need,” added Rod Bond.
Shelter Manchester’s Homeless Soup Kitchen
“Under the plans drawn up so far, we hope to place a mobile catering trailer which will serve as a soup kitchen offering homeless people a warming treat in the cold winter nights,” he added.
Manchester Television and Film Celebrities Follow Rod Bond’s Lead in Charity Half-Marathon
Under the auspices of the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association half-marathon organised by local campaigner Rod Bond, a host of television and film celebrities from Manchester took part in the race. The star-studded half-marathon featured a large number of Coronation Street’s cast. The long line-up of Coronation Street stars included Lucy Fallon, Kym Marsh and Brooke Vincent alongside Katie McGylnn, Faye Brookes and Simon Gregson. Also taking part were Sally Dyvenor, Michael Le Vell, Helen Flanagan, Alan Halsall and Antony Cotton. Coronation Street’s executive producer, who also took part in the half-marathon, Iain MacLeod, said, “Guide Dogs for the Blind Association is a cause that helps people and looks after hundreds of animals. They provide a life-changing service. The cast and crew firmly support their cause and were grateful to be asked by event organiser Rod Bond to take part.”
Rod Bond and Celebrity Friends
With the aim of raising millions of pounds for Guide Dogs for the Blind Association, Rod Bond has assembled a star-studded list of celebrities for the occasion. Alongside the Coronation Street actors, former Formula One owner Bernie Ecclestone led a group of the motorsport’s current racing drivers. They included British champion Lewis Hamilton, Sebastien Vettel, Valterri Bottas, Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc. Speaking of the celebrities’ pledges and the total public donations Rod Bond said, “We were hoping to raise millions and it was millions that we ended up raising. With the millions that we’ve raised we’re hoping to develop two new guide dog training centres and ensure that the Guide Dogs for the Blind Association can continue its great work.”
Since appearing on the Great British Bake Off in 2010, English celebrity chef and television presenter Paul Hollywood has become a firm fan favourite after coming to the nation’s attention as a judge on the hit television baking competition. Son of bakery owners John Hollywood and Gillian Harman, Paul Hollywood’s culinary career began with baking. He eventually went on to serve as head baker at leading hotels such as The Dorchester, Chester Grosvenor and Spa and the Cliveden Hotel. Paul also served at two resorts in Cyprus as a baker. Starting with the Great British Bake Off since its inaugural series in 2010, Hollywood developed a critically acclaimed partnership with fellow judge Mary Berry, to which the show’s considerable success was greatly attributed. However, Love Productions sold the rights to the show to BBC One’s competitor Channel 4, the pair were split up leaving critics and the public at large questioning the show’s future success without the mainstay of the on-screen judging duo watching over proceedings. On Channel 4, critics have acknowledged that the show has survived the transfer to Channel 4 and maintained its popularity despite the change of television networks.
Paul Hollywood has published various titles on baking, his first was released by Cassell, London in 2004 and entitled 100 Great Breads. His most recent work, The Weekend Baker, was published by Michael Joseph, London in 2016. He has appeared as a guest on various popular television programmes such as The Generation Game, The Heaven and Earth Show, This Morning and the Alan Titchmarsh Show, across the BBC and ITV networks. Following a 2013 appearance on The American Baking Competition, Hollywood had an affair with co-host Marcella Valladolid, which brought about the end of his marriage to 20-year partner Alexandra Hollywood.
As this season’s Strictly Come Dancing is well under way, we take a look back at one of the not-so-great things the hit dance show is known for, the popularly dubbed Strictly curse! Blamed for the breakdown of numerous real-life long-term relationships and marriages, the popular TV dance competition has seen couples split during or shortly after one partner has appeared on the show, with the public at large describing the recurring phenomenon as ‘the Strictly curse’.
After a waltz to victory in Strictly’s very first season in 2004, all those years ago, professional dancer Brendan Cole and broadcaster Natasha Kaplinsky were the first on-screen pairing to be seen to be getting closer on the show. While Brendan was engaged to co-star and fellow professional dancer Camilla Dallerup, Natasha was single. The alleged affair was never confirmed by either of the two, but whatever it was it resulted in Brendan and his ex-fiance splitting up. Fast-forwarding a few years to 2013 we saw the sparks fly between Rachel Riley and Pasha Kovalev. Having met her millionaire husband Jamie Gilbert during their university days, when they were both 19, and after 15 months of marriage, the relationship hit the rocks as she was literally swept off her feet by the dashing Strictly professional dancer Pasha Kovalev. The have been going strong ever since their appearance on the show!
More recently, the Strictly curse struck long-time celebrity couple Jamie and Lousie Redknapp. Together for eighteen years prior to Strictly, Louise laughed off the warnings about the so-called curse. However, having completed the show as runner up, the former All Saints singer spoke of her exasperation with the life of a ‘Stepford wife’. Her stint on the show culminated with a quickie divorce, which was completed in 2017, and took a mere 20 seconds!
The hottest reality TV show of recent decades, following the hottest family on screen today, is back for another instalment of what has become a global sensation and must-watch TV. The infamous Kardashian sisters return to our screens in what promises to be another spectacle of fame and fortune that we just can’t turn our eyes away from! Season 17 of KUWTK premiers in the USA on the 8th of September, while we’re going to have to wait a week until the season debuts on our screens. You can catch the hit reality show on E! every Sunday night at 9pm, as it traditionally has.
Over years, KUWTK has received mixed appraisal by critics and fans. Based on the concept of “famous for being famous,” the show’s stars have been criticised as having nothing to offer. However, while most will probably deny this, critics have mentioned its place on our TV screens as a “guilty pleasure.” Undeniable viewership figures, audience and critical awards pay homage to the show’s place in the popular psyche.
Debuting on screen in 2007, KUWTK has won a number of awards over its decade long tenure, with highlights of awards including the 2018 MTV TV and Movie Award for Best Reality Series, Teen Choice Award for Choice TV: Reality Series in 2018, 2016 and 2014 and various People’s Choice Awards in the reality show categories.
KUWTK follows the lives and day-to-day dramas of the Kardashian and Jenner sisters, and their mother and manager, Kris. The show has also featured their significant others, as well as the Jenners’ father, now known as Caitlyn Jenner following gender reassignment. Their only brother, Robert Kardashian, as well as his former partners including Blac Chyna and Adrienne Bailon, have also featured in the hit reality TV programme.
Don’t miss it on September 15, on E! at 9pm!
As rumours swirled and their time apart ticked on, it still came as a shock this week that this year’s Love Island winners, and apparently inseparable couple, Amber Gill and Greg O’Shea have officially split! Following a two-week romance on the hit show, the couple seemed rather quiet winners, vowing to rekindle their romance as soon as normality returned to their lives following their stint on the show. Beating their rivals to the £50,000 cash prize, the pair had initially insisted on pursuing their relationship, despite considerable time apart following a return to much busier schedules. Amber made a long-anticipated trip to visit Greg in Ireland, in late August, after which the couple’s fans were treated to a flurry of photos posted by the gushing couple on social media and publicly exchanged messages between the couple. Posing in front of famous landmarks, such as the Cliffs of Moher and Dromoland Castle Hotel and Country Club, the couple seemed to be enjoying their time together and were clearly on a good course.
However, around the time she expected to visit Greg in Ireland again, Amber revealed she had received a text message from Greg in which he stated his desire to longer pursue the relationship. By all accounts, it was Amber who pressed the conversation, as Greg overlooked the most basic etiquette by not informing her of his intentions clearly. Sources close to Amber have revealed that the Geordie beauty feels that Greg was aware of the distance between the two and chose to pursue her while on the show with full knowledge of it. However, Greg was more realistic about the situation, citing both of their busy schedules and their focus on their respective careers as the cause for the split, during an appearance on RTE One’s Late Late Show in Dublin.
In a recent Instagram outburst, Gemma Atkinson, 34, snapped back at trolls targeting her parenting skills on the popular social media platform. The post in question simply read, “on your mark, get set, go f*** yourself,” as the new mother listed the range of criticisms and suggestions she’s received from online trolls. “She shouldn’t have a dummy. It’s not cold enough for a hat. I hope you’re breastfeeding. Get a proper pram. Can’t believe you wake her to feed…” were listed by the actress and radio host as she took the online trolls to task. In the post, she continued, “Above is just a small list of what’s been said to me on here since having Mia…So, to those people who seem to be the unqualified experts when it comes to being a mum, the above is for you,” in reference to the stark proclamation contained in the posted photo.
Gemma who is currently in a relationship with Strictly Come Dancing professional dancer Gorka Marquez, announced news of her pregnancy on Instagram in February 2019. She gave birth to daughter Mia on the 4th of July. Gemma rose to prominence during her role of Lisa Hunter in the hit Channel 4 soap opera Hollyoaks. In 2011, Gemma appeared as Tamzin in Casualty, making a limited number of appearances. In 2015, Gemma appeared on ITV soap Emmerdale as Carly Hope, playing the role for two years. Gemma’s portfolio also includes theatre appearances, film appearances, reality television and glamour modelling. She was famously dating footballer Cristiano Ronaldo, during the early part of his tenure at Manchester United. She met her current partner, Gorka Marquez, as the two worked closely together on the 2017 series of Strictly Come Dancing.
In a move that has sparked outrage and public controversy, the BBC has planned to scrap the historical TV licence concession for over-75s. According to the plans, millions of over-75s will be obliged to pay the £154.50 licence fee from June 2020. The BBC has claimed that this move is necessary, otherwise the country’s largest television corporation will be forced to shut down channels in order to save on costs. The £154.50 fee covers the right to watch live television and access the BBC iPlayer service. The licence fee was scrapped by then Labour chancellor, Gordon Brown, in 1999, with the £154.50 cost of the licences fulfilled by the government. In 2015, under the direction of George Osbourne, it was announced that the government subsidisation of the licence fees was to be scrapped by 2020, leaving the BBC to choose whether or not to fund the concession.
The BBC has maintained that the total cost of continuing the subsidy equates to the running cost of various channels including BBC Two, BBC Three, BBC Four, the BBC News Channel, CBBC and CBeebies. On the plans to cut the subsidy, BBC Director General has stated, “This has not been an easy decision. Whilst we know that pensioner incomes have improved since 2000, we also know for some the TV licence is a lot of money.” As a pledge made in the Conservative manifesto during the 2017 election, Theresa May promised to maintain various benefits “including free bus passes, eye tests, prescriptions and TV licences, for the duration of this parliament.” Boris Johnson, speaking on the sidelines of the G7 summit in Biarritz, insisted that, “The BBC received a settlement that was conditional upon their paying for TV licences for over-75s. They should cough up.” Meanwhile, the debate rages on.
Playing Erin in Sky’s latest comedy series, Brassic, Michelle Keegan has appeared in her second steamy sex scene in as many outings. The scene features co-star Damien Molony, who plays Erin’s boyfriend Dylan, and shows the sexy starlet in the clutches of her lover, cramped inside a porta-loo! Her second scene follows on from the season and series opener in which Erin is seen in the throes of ecstasy atop her boyfriend. Michelle has described how the pair had only met minutes prior to filming the scene inside the porta-loo, “I literally just met Damo and then we had a sex scene in the porta-loo…It was a confined space but it sort of worked for this scene.” Speaking about her role and the appeal the show had for her, Michelle has spoken of being able to relate to its various characters and its northern setting.
Taking its name from cockney rhyming slang for “skint,” “boracic lint,” Sky’s latest comedy tells the tale of five friends who live in the northern town of Hawley. Struggling to make ends meet, the working-class bunch support themselves with various petty crimes. The comedy show premiered on Sky One last Thursday, 22nd August. It has already been well received by fans and is being hailed as a 2019 version of the classic hit show Shameless.
Devised and co-created by Joe Gilgun and Danny Brocklehurt, who previously served as a writer on the comedy classic Shameless, it is clear where the comparison and influences arise from. Alongside Keegan and Gilgun, it stars Damien Molony, Tom Hanson, Aaron Heffernan, Ryan Sampson and Parth Tharekar. It is produced by Juliet Charlesworth.
Keegan leads the cast after great success following a seven-year stint as Coronation Street’s Tina McIntyre and successful roles in BBC One dramas Our Girl and Ordinary Lies.
This coming week will see the return of Jan Lozinski. Following sensational scenes in the child trafficking storyline, Jan will finally reveal he was working as a police informant, declare his love for Eileen and ask her to move away with him. However, Eileen and Seb’s problems won’t be so easily forgotten, as Rachel returns next week to spy on the pair. Alina will return briefly, giving Seb hope of rekindling their romance. Desperate to keep her around, he will spill the beans on Jan, all to no avail. Robert will hold Jed to ransom over the dangerous double game he is playing with Michelle and Vicky. Fending Michelle off with various lies, Jed will try to pay Robert off with £2,000, only to find himself even deeper. Shona visits David in prison over Max’s recent behavioural problems, not realising he has been secretly refusing his ADHD medication. As Shona and Max bond after she realises she had no idea of Kylie’s birthday, she remains unaware of Max disposing of his medication.
Following her discovery of news of Hunter’s escape, to be aired tonight, the news will bring a nervy week ahead for Mel. As Ben questions her further about Lisa, he decides to follow her, as she ends up leading him to where Hunter is hiding. The question is, will Ben learn the truth? Later in the week, Ben challenges Mel and she ends up acquiescing to him. Stuffing money from the E20 safe in her bag, Mel is alarmed by the police calling in. Elsewhere, as Rainie’s use of painkillers continues, she is confronted by Kathy, who uses a tough approach.