On a bridge over the M6, somewhere near junction 20, some wit had hung a banner. On a primrose-and-blue-striped cloth, this is what was written:
It must have seemed odd to tens of thousands of travelers using that busy stretch of the motorway last weekend, or at least those who had no idea that they were passing a rugby-league-mad town that was suffering from Challenge Cup fever.
That banner, though, made a very valid point; a point that was made crystal clear by the sight of all those Warrington supporters who sang their hearts out at Wembley Stadium on Saturday.
Warrington's coach Tony Smith reckons that the Wolves fans outnumbered their opposition supporters by 3 to 1, and helped make a big difference to the team whose job it was to make thousands of dreams come true.
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The Lions have now lost seven straight matches against the Tri Nations. It is as bad a run of losses as the combined might of Britain and Ireland has ever suffered yet in defeat the side savaged any talk of a dying concept (excuse me if I do not use that soulless 21st century corporate speak 'soul') with a performance to live alongside many of the renowned victories of yesteryear.
Yes, South Africa won the game with a magnificent strike from Morne Steyn, but the visitors emerged as the heroes of the hour. The Lions had the superior fifteen but the Springboks an infinitely more impacting bench. In the centre of one of the most epic tests for years it was the strength of squad that pulled the Springboks through. Heinrich Brussow, (destined for a lengthy run in the side after the Schalk Burger gouging incident), Jaque Fourie and Steyn all produced telling performances to lift the home side while the Lions - with the feisty exception of Andrew Sheridan lost vast amounts of power as the starting line up were reduced to rubble, one after the other.
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September 2nd, 2009: Little John’s Farm in Reading was rocking over the Bank Holiday Weekend and the Reading Festival is over for another year,
Over 80,000 festival goers enjoyed the sunshine at Reading Festival, as well as the cracking lineup which included Kings of Leon, Arctic Monkeys, Radiohead, The Prodigy and many many more.
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“I’ve been paying attention to news reports and it has been brought to my attention, that there is a lot of discrimination against Romanies and Gypsies in general in Eastern Europe - it made me feel very sad." "We don't believe in discrimination, we believe in freedom and equal rights for everyone," she said.
She was greeted by another round of jeers, but recovered to launch into a rendition of You Must Love Me, the song she sang in the 1996 film Evita about the Argentine first lady Eva Duarte de Peron who was loved and hated in equal measure
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September 3, 2009: Comedian Phill Jupitus, pop star Belinda Carlisle and West End regular Sharon D Clarke are to join the cast of hit musical Hairspray this October.
Jupitus replaces Brian Conley as larger than life leading lady Edna Turnblad from 26 October, with Carlisle joining the company as the glamorous but malevolent Velma von Tussle and Clarke playing Motormouth Mabel. Tony Timberlake also replaces Nigel Planer as Wilbur Turnblad, with former Grease lead Nicola Brazil joining the cast as Amber Von Tussle and Gavin Alex playing Corny Collins. Chloe Hart, Verity Rushworth, Liam Tamne, Adrian Hansel and Raquel Jones all continue in the show.
Comedian and broadcaster Jupitus, a regular on TV panel shows such as Never Mind The Buzzcocks and QI, will become the third actor to drag up to play the big-hearted mother in the West End, following current cast member Conley and original Edna Michael Ball, who won a Laurence Olivier Award for his performance. Though he is not a regular on the musical theatre circuit, Jupitus is not making his West End debut; the comedian appeared in Lifecoach at the Trafalgar Studio 2 in 2008
September 3, 2009: The Oscar-winning Australian actress Cate Blanchett was left bleeding from a head wound when she was injured on stage during a theatre production in Sydney overnight.
Blanchett, who starred in the films Elizabeth and The Aviator, was accidentally hit on the head during Wednesday night’s preview performance for the Tennessee Williams play A Streetcar Named Desire for the Sydney Theatre Company (STC).
The actress, who is playing Blanche DuBois in the production, was accidentally struck with a prop radio by her co-star Joel Edgerton, playing Stanley Kowalski, the part famously immortalised by Marlon Brando in the 1951 film version.
Editors, Basement Jaxx, Just Jack and Fatboy Slim are among the acts announced to launch this year's Oxjam month of music, organisers have announced. The acts will play gigs in a secret Oxfam shop in London with a 150-person capacity in aid of the charity this September and October.
VV Brown and Tony Allen are also set to play gigs to start the Oxjam month of music. The gigs will help kick off thousands of other fundraising music events to take place across the country in aid of Oxfam. The 2009 Oxjam month of music will culminate on October 25, with the Oxjam Takeover, which will see more than 2000 musicians fill over 150 venues in more than 20 cities to raise funds for Oxfam.
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Fans of the Sheffield band sang all the words to songs from their third album Humbug, only released on Monday. But old favourites like I Bet You Look Good On The Dancefloor and When The Sun Goes Down provided the real highlights.
The new album was mostly produced by Josh Homme, the frontman of US hard rockers Queens Of The Stone Age, in the Californian desert. Among the spectators, plumber Bobby Young, 34, from Glasgow, said the mixture of old and new was "sound, really good". "The punters liked the tunes they knew - something they could sing along to," he said.
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