Basingstoke Writers' Circle launch their anthology - with a little help from Dave the Rower (From Basingstoke Gazette)
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Basingstoke Writers' Circle launch their anthology - with a little help from Dave the Rower
MEMBERS, supporters and friends joined Basingstoke Writers’ Circle (BWC) for the launch of their new publication last night.
Destinations...Basingstoke & Beyond is the group’s sixth anthology since it was launched and contains a mixture of poetry and prose on the subject of travel. Special guest at the event was local favourite Dave ‘the rower’ Holby-Wolinski, the subject of Tony Corbin’s poem Destination Basingstoke, which is included in the book.
After a welcome by long-standing member Joan Sullivan, chairman Ted Irwin introduced the night’s events. He made everyone laugh by recalling the first night he attended a meeting of BWC and was initially unimpressed by the surroundings.
Mr Irwin said: “I sat in that room and thought about throwing myself headfirst out the window, but then a few people read pieces and I thought, that’s extraordinary. I walked home inspired to write something and that’s what we do still.”
Several pieces from Destinations, including In Case! by Shirley Carr, were read aloud.
Dave addressed the gathering, first apologising for the moustache he’d been growing to raise money as part of the annual ‘Movember’ event, revealing: “On the last day of the month, I am dyeing it pink.”
Sales of the book on the night went towards Breakthrough Breast Cancer, the charity for which Chineham resident Dave raised £20,000 by rowing around the world on a static rowing machine – in two years, six months and 20 days – based in The Malls shopping centre.
The disease had caused the death of his beloved grandmother and Dave has since reaffirmed his commitment to the charity by running marathons and coming up with interesting new ways in which he can raise money.
Dave explained: “Becoming a father (to a baby daughter in October) has reaffirmed my desire to do something and give something back”. And he revealed that BWC had played a previous key role in one of his fundraising ideas.
He continued: “We needed an amazing poem centred around the challenge for a short film made by my friend Bruce Gill so we came to the experts. They are an amazing group of wonderful people. Tony’s poem is about hope and a future in which we believe we can be free of breast cancer.”
A total of 72 books were sold on the night, many of which Dave signed, raising £90 for the charity.
The anthology’s compiler Tony Corbin concluded: “It was a really fabulous evening, well above our expectations.”
*Copies of Destinations... Basingstoke & Beyond are now available in the local branches of Waterstone’s and WH Smith. Find out more online at basingstokewriters.webs.com. The link to Bruce's film is in the written word section of the site.