It was all going so well....

OH it's all been ever so interesting here at the newspaper.Never a dull moment we've been busy recently with a few good court cases, including a pervert lottery winner a drugs baron.

OH it's all been ever so interesting here at the newspaper.

Never a dull moment we've been busy recently with a few good court cases, including a pervert lottery winner a drugs baron.

And of course the awful bluetongue disease which is affecting farmers.

For us hacks it's been pretty hectic - just how we like it.

But for me the highlight of the last ten days was when I got to interview singing star Petula Clark - even though I wasn't entirely successful.

After a few emails to her man that sorts these things out for her in Los Angeles I called her up.

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“Hello,” I said, “Is that Miss Clark?”

“Yes hello,” she replied.

“It's James Marston here….” I left out the other details such as Evening Star columnist and Ipswich celebrity “Would you be ok to chat for a while?” I continued remembering I had a tape of her greatest hits in my little blue Polo.

“Yeah James, sure,” replied Petula, obviously pretending she didn't know who I was.

I asked a few questions, she was chatting away about her forthcoming visit to the Regent theatre in the downtown area of Ipswich and it was all going swimmingly.

Then I made the tiniest tiny faux pas.

“So Petula,” I said, “It might be a bit of a cheeky question, but how old are you?”

A stony silence.

I could almost hear the tumbleweed rolling down the phone line and I knew things had taken a turn for the worse.

“Why do you want to know that?” she replied in a steely tone of voice I knew wasn't overly impressed with my line of questioning.

I'm afraid dear readers, I have a confession, I blamed you.

I babbled about how our readers will all be so impressed to learn a woman who is possibly but only just past retirement age who still has so much energy.

I banged on about how our readers will be looking forward to seeing her sing. I spluttered and coughed and tried to crack a joke and somehow got myself out of it.

The truth is I only asked because I had spoken to my mum the night before and she had said “Petula Clark, she's been around years, she must be knocking on 70!”

Well dear readers unfortunately I failed you, I never did find out but I have since discovered she's quite a bit over 70.

I suddenly admire her all the more.

AS regular readers will know I asked out loud in my column last week why the beach huts on the front were moved on to the promenade recently.

My friend Doreen, who is involved in local politics and has been watching closely my move to the Edwardian seaside resort, emailed me the following information.

Hi James

It is an annual event in Felixstowe that the beach huts that are actually on the beach are moved back onto the prom.

It is a requirement of the agreement with hut owners that this happens and is a protective measure against any adverse weather during the winter months.

Some hut owners move the huts themselves and others pay the Council for this to be done. Similarly when the huts are moved back into their positions.



Well thanks Doreen. That's cleared that up.

Furthermore, I have since contacted Suffolk Coastal District Council and put my name on a waiting list for a chalet close to the Cliff Gardens.

The chalets, not to put too finer a point on it, are often used by older people.

But this is not something that worries me.

My name is 176 on the waiting list and I suspect I'll be knocking in with even less hair but probably less of a mortgage when I finally get the keys.

DID you see the drama at Felixstowe on Friday?

Well, as was reported in The Evening Star, there were high seas and lots of big waves and no one was expecting it.

A theatrical friend of mine who enjoys caravanning and lives in a stylish home with sea views (panoramic) close to the sea front said: “It was really bad. I'd never seen it like that before. The waves were crashing onto the prom.”

All highly dramatic you see with shingle all over the prom and even some gardens flooded.

Since I have moved into my little flat with sea views (distant) I have only known the sea in calm and not too rough mood.

Friday's events were a stark reminder of the power of nature and there looks like there's a bit of clearing up to do too.

We had the following announcement sent to our newsdesk last week:

“CAMILLA, The Duchess of Cornwall joined her husband The Prince of Wales in The Royal Zone at Madame Tussauds London today.

Her Royal Highness sat for sculptors at Clarence House in June and personally selected her figure's outfit and accessories.”

We can all recognise her now if we bump into her as she's whipping round Copdock Tesco for a packet of Duchy Originals and a an emergency bottle of Gordons.

Good old Camilla.