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Bored Game of SKATE at the Southsea Skatepark 3rd Anniversary Jam

This Saturday is the 3rd Anniversary Jam at Southsea Skatepark which celebrates three years since the charitable trust took over the running of the park from Portsmouth City Council. In recent weeks the park itself has seen a lot of improvements with new ramps, a change in some of the layout and the whole place having a bit of a makeover PLUS a new BMX/Skate shop as well as the cafe with a new summer menu too.

On Saturday there will be a whole range of fun events for BMX, scooters and skateboarding all throughout the day, including the Bored of Southsea Game of SKATE on the rink. The game is open to all skateboarders and has a big pile of decks and other prizes for the winners and is always fun for everyone to have a watch. Also, for the first time the people in the game of SKATE do NOT have to wear helmets.

Bored Game of SKATE at the Southsea Skatepark 3rd Anniversary Jam (1)

Bored Game of SKATE at the Southsea Skatepark 3rd Anniversary Jam (2)

Created Local with Sam Brandon

Sam Brandon is a 23 year old local illustrator who grew up in Spain and recently last year came to live in the UK, in Southsea, for the first time. Sam currently works as a freelance illustrator and graphic designer with ideas to try to help promote local business, community and culture. Most of Sam’s artwork is completely hand drawn, using a pencil for sketching and then fine line pens or Posca pens for inking and colouring. Serious skills!

You can see some examples of Sam’s work below, including his ‘Keep Southsea Weird’ artwork and you can see more at the following:

My instagram: @skever
My twitter: @SamuelBrandon

Created Local with Sam Brandon (1)

Created Local with Sam Brandon (3)

Created Local with Sam Brandon (2)

Created Local with Sam Brandon (4)

ARTches Project Consultation, What Would You Want?

Portsmouth’s aspex Gallery are working in partnership with Portsmouth City Council to find out from the public what the potential demand could be for the artist spaces in the ARTches project plus what requirements might be needed for artists to work in the proposed studio spaces. The studio arch spaces will be aimed at new and emerging artists from a wide range of creative practices.

For the ARTches project to succeed it will need to work with the local artistic community and as a business ensure it fulfils all the needs of prospective studio tenants so aspex are running an online survey (only takes 30 seconds to complete) to try and find out what people would want so if you have a moment you could really help contribute valuable information to the project.

To complete the short survey questionnaire click HERE.

ARTches Proposal Consultation (3)

‘Sun So Close’ New Single by The Folsom

Portsmouth two piece guitar band The Folsom have been busy recording a new EP this spring, with the first song from it, ‘Sun So Close’, released last week as a single. The song written by Jack Ware & Nick Day is now on SoundCloud below and the EP will be up for sale in May.

Find out more about The Folsom on their Facebook page:

'Sun So Close' New Single by The Folsom

Bread Addiction, A New Artisan Bakery for Portsmouth

In the last 4 years or so there has been a sharp increase in people rediscovering the joys of baking, with the success of The Great British Bakeoff being the most obvious example and inspiration…but behind the cupcakes and soggy bottoms there have been a small but growing group of passionate individuals dedicated to the ancient art of creating bread. Small bakeries have been cropping up across the UK in recent years, run by passionate amateur and professional bakers working from anything from their own small kitchen oven to pizza restaurant kitchens in the middle of the night and through to the actual return of bakeries to the high street.

Bread Addiction is one such artisan bakery & patisserie that is striving to open a new bakery and shop in Elm Grove in the heart of Southsea. Bread Addiction will sell fresh, organic, handmade food where as much as possible will be produced with local produce, carefully selected for quality. Nikola Ondroušková and her partner are passionate bakers and wish to bring the delights of sourdough bread to Portsmouth and are looking to start their business in a innovative new way, by selling their first future batches of bread by crowdfunding to pay for the major & most expensive pieces of equipment required.

If you are interested in supporting this new, local venture you can donate and receive a variety of different benefits, anything from a coffee through to bread for a year. Check the Bread Addiction page on Indiegogo for the full list of donation benefits and to also make your donation to the project:

Bread Addiction, A New Artisan Bakery for Portsmouth (1)

Bread Addiction, A New Artisan Bakery for Portsmouth (2)

Bread Addiction, A New Artisan Bakery for Portsmouth (3)

British Pathé Upload Vast News Film Collection, Including Portsmouth Films

The British Pathé company was established in 1933, an associate to French Pathé which started as a newsreel service back in 1908, and through decades and decades it captured both major and minor events on film from all over the UK and the British Empire & Commonwealth. As of last week British Pathé uploaded its entire collection of 85,000 vintage news reports and ‘cinemagazines’ to its YouTube channel, giving a vast archive of news film for future generations.

In this huge archive (over 3,500 hours of footage) are some fascinating films about Portsmouth and Southsea that are well worth a watch, including visits by royalty, the Royal Navy and Portsmouth FC. Below are are few examples, be sure to take a little time to watch more Portsmouth Pathé newsreels and also dive in to the collection as a whole on YouTube.

Navy Week in Portsmouth from 1937 with great shots of HMS Victory.

Princess Elizabeth’s visit to Portsmouth in 1951, including her visit to the Nuffield Centre (then used by the forces, now part of the University of Portsmouth).

Profile on Portsmouth FC from 1934, with incredible shots of Fratton Park.

Raw footage of Navy submarine HMS Dreadnaught out on sea trials from 1963.

Fascinating and rare footage of an air raid on Portsmouth filmed in 1941.

Portsmouth Street Games Teaser Video With My Dog Sighs

In the run up to Portsmouth Street Games at the end of May Strong Island Media will be producing three short teaser films focusing on different aspects of the event. This first teaser is about the street art that will be happened over the weekend of the 31st May & 1st June at the Guildhall Square and features Portsmouth and Southsea street artist MyDogSighs who is co-curating the street art side of the event.

Keep an eye on the Portsmouth Street Games page on Facebook for upcoming event information and more teasers:

Portsmouth Street Games at Portsmouth Guildhall Square This Summer (1)

Rocker Soccer Returns for 7th June 2014

The annual (in some cases very) amateur football tournament Rocker Soccer, with teams from many of the local creative and music businesses, is set to return in June. The event for some years was a regular summer highlight with not only the semi-shambolic Sunday league stylings of some teams through to the matching kit of the likes of ilovedust but also the infamous post games awards night at Little Johnny Russell’s, Albert Road.

There is no age limit but vast majority of teams will be over 18 years old. The event welcomes all abilities, this is a competitive tournament but played in good spirit. It’d be great if your team could represent something local, be that a pub, restaurant, business or charity. This year the event is encouraging teams to raise money for Feel Yourself Campaign, a local charity raising awareness on how cancer effects young people.

Check the flyer below and Facebook Group HERE for more details:

Rocker Soccer 2014

Joe Watson from Attack! Vipers! on BBC Click

The BBC’s weekly technology programme Click last week had a feature on a piece of software that converts voice into the sounds of music instruments. The segment, recorded at the BBC’s Live Lounge included four singers from different genres, including Southsea’s very own Joe Watson from Attack! Vipers!. The segment is about 13 minutes in and can be watched on BBC’s iPlayer HERE, well worth a watch (just to see Joe getting his scream on). Good work Joe!

Strong Island Sounds Podcast with Longlive Radio Episode 15

It is Friday lunchtime and Charlie is back with a new Strong Island Sounds podcast episode with Longlive Radio episode 14, this time focusing on a particularly awesome year:

This week I took inspiration from an old tune that I revisited on an evening run. I’d just turned 14 when ‘Know Your Enemy’ by Rage Against The Machine was released as a single, and up until then I’d grown up on a diet of my brother’s and sister’s music. The Jam, Bowie and The Smiths from my sisters and NWA, Big Audio Dynamite and Italian House from my brother. It was around this time that I was ready to find my own music, and something a bit weightier than Star Trekkin’ and Snow. Suddenly I was listening to stuff my siblings had never heard, let alone liked, and from there it snowballed (Informer). I decided to pick a few tunes from that same year and play them on today’s show.

As well as that there’s tunes from The Kinks, 2 Bears, Blackalicious and Rodriguez. This weeks cut from Sam’s Selection Box is 1992 flavoured too, as is the intro…name that film?

Hope you enjoy it, best listened to in Troop trainers, Joe Bloggs jeans and a Naff Co 54 jacket.


01) Know Your Enemy – Rage Against The Machine
02) Breakaway – Irma Thomas
03) 7 – Prince & The New Power Generation
04) Uptown Top Ranking – Althea & Donna
05) This Time (I’m Gonna Try It My Way) – DJ Shadow
06) Bear Hug – The 2 Bears
07) This Time Tomorrow – The Kinks
08) Twistarella – Ride
09) The Drowners – Suede
from Sam’s Selection Box…
10) Molly’s Lips – The Vaselines
11) Lord Of The Dance – Chris Clark
12) Deception – Blackalicious
13) I Wonder – Rodriguez
14) It Was A Good Day – Ice Cube
15) My Drug Buddy – The Lemonheads

Strong Island Sounds Podcast with Longlive Radio Episode 15


Competition – Win Two Tickets To See Kassassin Street + Curxes + Juice

Friday 3rd May the Wedgewood Rooms will be hosting a great night of music featuring Kassassin Street, Curxes and Juice. The guys at Kassassin Street have been generous enough to donate a pair of tickets for you, the Strong Island readers.

All you have to do to win these tickets are to email your answer to the question below to by midnight on Sunday 27th. The winner will be announced here on Monday 28th.

Q – The band are named after the road in Eastney, name one of the three roads which junction with it?

Find out more about the event on the Facebook HERE.

Kassassin Street + Curxes + Juice + Longlive DJs

Juice ‘Numbskull’ from Butchy Davy on Vimeo.

Strong Island Calendar Exhibition

Last November saw the launch of our 2014 Calendar at an Exhibition at the Wine Vaults. You can read an article from Becki Partridge about the event HERE.

We cannot take all of the credit for the exhibition, the content was all provided by you, the Strong Island readers. Not to forget the exhibition was made possible by the team at Southsea Gallery who printed and framed the photographs. If you see a photo that you like you can purchase it in Southsea Gallery located at 51 Albert Road.

The exhibition can be found in ‘snug’ on the far right hand side of the Wine Vaults.

If you would like to know how to get involved in next years calendar then click HERE to find out more information.

Phil Tickner Calendar Exhibition 1

Phil Tickner Calendar Exhibition

Photos are by the awesome Phil Tickner, be sure to give him a follow on Flickr and on Twitter @HoldYourColour.

Strong Island Calendar Exhibition

A Kind of Conjuration at the Cellars

You would think witch trails a thing of the distant past. However, during the second world war a woman was tried and convicted under the ancient Witchcraft Act.

A play about the trial was performed at The Cellars at Eastney last week. Local theatre companies New Apollo and Cop The Needle brought audiences A Kind of Conjuration. This hour-long theatre piece, directed by Steve Pitt, featured a group of five actors, and was based on the real-life trial of Scottish medium Helen Duncan in 1944, for events that took place in Portsmouth.

The intimacy of the venue worked well for the subject matter, and enabled the performers and audience to connect in a way that isn’t possible in larger venues. When the judge, played by Christopher Marlowe, addressed the jury during the court scene, he spoke to the audience as if they were the jury, making them feel involved in the action.

Angie Lily was fantastic in the court scene, nipping backstage to change elements of costume in-between each character, resulting in a highly entertaining whirlwind of at least five different characters (and accents) testifying in quick succession. Henry Oastler was on comedic top form for his appearance in the court scene, displaying subtle character traits such as a tuck of the chin, transforming him completely from his other role in the play as a newspaper journalist. James Kirby and Tim Lowe also gave entertaining performances.

Writers Stuart Olesker and John Stanton incorporated excerpts from the original court transcript, adding authenticity to this brilliant piece. A highly refreshing and thought provoking performance.

A Kind of Conjuration will next be performed at the Square Tower on 25th June as part of Portsmouth Festivities. (Doors open at 7pm, performance starts at 8pm). On this occasion the play will be preceded by a monologue from the late Harry Price, ghostbuster extraordinary. Tickets from 023 9282 6249 or 023 9273 6288 or online:


Ashley Harley in Portsmouth News:
“a little gem”
“hauntingly good”
“not to be missed”
“solid direction”

Heather James in Portsmouth News:
“I was riveted”
“very witty and entertaining”

David Richards of Remote Goat:
“a sellout”
“a joy to watch”
“superb performances”
“a very high degree of professionalism”
“a very effective mix of the serious and the comedic”
“another triumph and a thoroughly enjoyable evening”

The original flyer for the show at The Cellars

Strong Island Calendar 2015 #SIC2015

Our 2014 Calendar was a huge success, the quality of images and huge amount interest it received really took us by surprise. We managed to double the sales of the 2013 Calendar, meaning we raised just over £600 for the Feel Yourself Campaign and the Alzheimer’s Society. We received over a thousand submissions by email and by use of the Instagram hashtag #sic2014.

We are excited to announce that we are taking submissions for our 2015 calendar. If you’ve taken a photo that you’d like to submit then you can email your submission via If you’ve taken a photo on Instagram that you’d like to submit for consideration you just need add the hashtag #SIC2015. There are no limits to how many you submit, the only rule is that the image must be relevant to Portsmouth.

Along with Instagram this year we also recommend you check out the Faded App. I’ve had a play with this App and you can create images that surpass anything that Instagram can produce. I especially love the overlay function.

If you have been taking any photos during this extreme weather we would love for you to submit them!

You may be aware that unfortunately due to an error our end the original batch of calendars contained a couple of errors. To rectify this the problem with the calendar we re-printed all of the calendars and offered everyone who bought one a free replacement (with free P&P where required). We are confident that we have managed to replace the vast major because of the online ordering records, however if you bought one from Lou Lou’s, Southsea Gallery or the Victorian Market then we don’t have your details so we need you to contact us ASAP to arrange a replacement! Those unclaimed calendars by the end of the week are likely to be donated to the staff of the charities we are supporting

Strong Island Calendar 2015

Here are just a few of the submissions that we have already received that might give you some inspiration.

Charlie Thompson Fratton Park

Charlie Thompson 2
Both Charlie Thompson
Todd Lawton
Todd Lawton
Roberta Curxes
Roberta Fidora
Danny Miles
Danny Miles

Road To Blissfields 2014 by Sophie Perryer

It’s that time of year again, when Southsea’s finest traipse out on a Friday night to listen to some of our home-grown, burgeoning talent. This year was no exception, with the likes of Becky Jerams, Poppobowa, Sabre and the B of the Bang taking to the stage to fill our ears with a range of musical goodness.

The evening was held this year at the Cellars at Eastney, and certainly had a more relaxed atmosphere – Strong Island’s Stuart Barker was even spotted wandering around with a cup of tea at one point!

The relaxed atmosphere lent itself perfectly to Becky Jerams soulful, syrupy vocals, gliding effortlessly over lyrics and melodies alike. Becky has enjoyed considerable success over the last few years with her song writing: her track ‘La La Love’ was featured in a Mandy Moore movie, and she has written for the likes of Chesney Hawkes and Loz Bridge. These accomplishments certainly showed through in her music; her sound was very much grown up pop and polished, while still retaining a youthful, wishful quality in her lyrics. A great start to the evening.

Becky was followed by Popobawa, a Gosport based trio relatively new to the music scene – so much so that Road To Blissfields was their debut live show! To say the boys coped well would be an understatement; they delivered a strong set with some interesting melodic choices which made for a distinctive sound, and the combination of this with hazy vocals akin to Friendly Fires was very striking. The best part? You can download their EP for a ‘name your price’ on their SoundCloud page.

Also hailing from Gosport were SABRE – the fivesome delivered catchy synth beats and impressive vocals not dissimilar to the Maccabees or Bombay Bicycle Club, with a little Two Door Cinema Club thrown in for good measure. Their raucous sarcastic comedy appealed to the crowd, and the banter between the band members was enjoyable.

Last but certainly not least were the B Of The Bang. The contrast of the almost gravelly voice of the lead singer and the Roxanne on keyboard’s ethereal vocals lent an almost eerie sense. The band delivered well thought-out tracks which were both directional and abstract, and conveyed a sense of their musical versatility and talent. Without a doubt a well deserved victory.

Congratulations to the B Of The Bang“>B of the Bang on their slot at Blissfields, and thank you also to the other artists for once again showcasing to us the quality of our local talent! Thank you too to Bellyeyesmile, Joel Ransom, the Cellars at Eastney, Strong Island, and all those others who had a hand in organising a top evening.

By Sophie Perryer

*We will be giving away a pair of tickets to Blissfields over the next six weeks so be sure to keep an eye out.*

Becky Jerams
Becky Jerams

Becky Jerams




B Of The Bang


B Of The Bang

All photo’s by Daniel O’Neill

Victorious Festival 2014

In January the Victorious Festival team announced that the festival will be moving to Southsea Seafront. The team appear to have planned a bigger and better event building upon the success of previous years.

Last week saw the second wave of artists confirmed to perform live. The line up already consisted of awesome headliners Dizzie Rascal, Seasick Steve but they have now been joined by Razorlight, British Sea Power, Slow Club, Foy Vance, Mark Morriss of The Bluetones and The Bog Rolling Stones. There will be DJ sets from Alt J, Terry Hall of the Specials, 2manyDJs and COR. Not to forget some of the best local talent such as Matt Jarvis, Eloise Keating and our favourites the Southsea Alternative Choir are also performing.

Personally I’m really excited about the Sunday line up, I’ve been a huge fan of Seasick Steve for years and I even went to Bestival dressed as him for the Under the Sea fancy dress theme. Sunday also see’s British Sea Power performing, they have been regular visitors to the Wedgewood Rooms during their tours in the past, most recently in April 2013. They are easily one of the best live acts you could ever have the pleasure of seeing. The Saturday headliner Dizzie Rascal isn’t too shabby. I caught him at Bestival in 2010 and I can promise you, he knows how to put on a show and get you dancing!

There will be more artists announced closer to the time. You can find out first by following Victorious on Facebook and Twitter @VictoriousFest, or by signing up to the mailing list HERE.

The event is more than just a music festival, there will be lots going on in the Kids Arena as well a Real Ale Festival featuring many local breweries. For the weekend local seafront attractions will be FREE, these include Southsea Castle, Blue Reef Aquarium, D-Day Museum and Southsea Skate Park. If you would like to be involved in the boutique market then drop the team an email on

The festival will be held on Saturday 23rd and Sunday 24th August. There are limited early bird tickets available but hurry as they are only available at the reduced price for the next ten days! Adult Day tickets are currently available for £15 per day and will be £20 after. You can pick one up via the website HERE, or directly at Little Johnny Russells or either of the Belle Isle restaurants. Kids tickets will cost £6 but those under the age of five can enter the festival for free.

Over the next five months we will try and keep you up to date on announcements and preview the performers and attractions that you can look forward to.

Victorious Festival 2014