Wolves in Wolves – Touring The North Route

This summer, the city of Wolverhampton has been overtaken by Wolves, beautiful decorated wolves. The #WolvesinWolves2017, is the largest public art event ever to take place in the city with 30 wolf sculptures located in and around the city centre. The wolves have been created by a range of artists that range from High Schools and University students, to renowned artists from around the world. The wolves are on display around the city, with two trails that you can access at your leisure, or through an organised wolf walk. On Wednesday night I took my boy Joe Luca on the Northern wolf walk which lasted for two hours and took in wolves at The Molineaux, West Park, Marstons/Banks brewery and St Peter’s Square.

The organised wolf walks are a great way to see the wolves and learn a little about the design, inspiration and the artist. You get to find the out of the way wolves which may be a little harder to find if you don’t really know your way around Wolverhampton, and you can explore some of the amazing architecture and history of the city as you make your way around.

We were very lucky as the wonderful Wolverhampton Art Gallery (which houses an amazing collection of Pop Art) had agreed to stay open so we could explore their wolves gallery which contains two full sized wolves sculptures, and then a whole gallery of mini wolves, including a stunning design that had padlocks all around it’s neck.

 

The wolves are truly beautiful, with my personal favourite being ‘Sunset’ which is sponsored by Wolverhampton Speedway and is located on Darlington Street and is decorated with squirrels and wildlife. I also loved Flame that is located outside the offices of the Express and Star building, and Wolf Ver-Hamtpon, which is based at the Civic Centre and has been decorated with mayoral chains. Claude is the naughty wolf, he travels around the city, reappearing in different destinations.

The wolves will be auctioned after the exhibition ends on September 24th and is well worth a visit before then. For more information check out the website here.

Raised By Wolves – Wolverhampton Cineworld Preview

On Tuesday I took part in a very special coach trip, with Caitlin and Caroline Moran and the cast of ‘Raised by Wolves’, their new television series that is coming to Channel 4 very soon. (You’ve probably seen the adverts by now ‘…I’m talking cystitis Germaine…’), As I previously mentioned, the coach trip came to an end at Cineworld, Bentley Bridge, where we were treated to a preview of a couple of episodes from the series, and then a Q&A session with the writers, and the stars of the show Helen Monks and Alexa Davies, who play Germaine and Aretha respectively. Raised by Wolves: Caitlin Moran and her sister with the girls who are portraying them From the previews, the series is going to be a real hoot. An hilarious, warm and wry look at a childhood lived at a distance from the norm, with young adults learning their lessons through real life adventures, rather than from any formal sort of education, led by a mother based on Clint Eastwood (the marvellous Rebekah Staton). The girls are based on Caitlin (Germaine) and Caroline (Aretha), and couldn’t be more different, with Germaine an hormone raging 15 year old desperately in love lust with bad boy Lee, and Aretha, a shy, budding intellectual seriously despairing of her older sibling, but protective of her all the same. 10430917_723283694436401_5136395901370946451_n   The series has been likened to a female ‘Inbetweeners’, and I think this is a good comparison. Let’s face it, girls can be as badly behaved as teenage boys when they put their mind to it, and these girls (Germaine in particular), put their mind to it on a regular basis. Add in younger sister Yoko, played with wide eyed fright by the fabulous Molly Risker, and the babies (pronounced Bab not babe), Wyatt, Mariah and Cher, and you have all the makings of a super funny comedy that will totally address the problem that  ‘Telly never has any smart, amusing intellectuals living on a council estate.’ http://youtu.be/-2LTnTnIoRM After the preview I was able to have a quick chat with Helen Monks and Alexa Davies, who said that the most important thing to them was that the series was recognisable and seemed authentic, that these were characters you would feel like you knew in some way, and also that the characters were likeable, you were laughing with them, not at them. 10408992_853977004644065_3994520720440624515_n I think Raised By Wolves has achieved this in spades!

Raised By Wolves – A coach trip with Caitlin Moran

*Warning – this post is about a coach trip with Caitlin and Caroline Moran, it may contain chat about periods, sex and Wolverhampton – you have been warned.

Raised By Wolves is a new, semi-autobiographical comedy series written by Wolverhampton’s very own Caitlin and Caroline (Caz) Moran. Transported to the modern day, but based on the rather unorthodox childhood of the Moran family, Raised by Wolves is a wry, often hilarious, heart-warming tale of teenage girls growing up disgracefully. The series launches on Channel 4 very soon, and, to celebrate the launch, Caitlin and Caz invited guests on a very special coach trip – a guided tour of the beauty of ‘Wolverhampton’ (I can say that as an adopted Wulfrunian.) Also along for the trip, which went from Wolverhampton train station to the Cineworld at Bentley Bridge, were the stars of the new series, Helen Monks and Alexa Davies, who play Germaine and Aretha.

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The Coach Trip was like none that I have ever been on before, with anecdotal stories and hilarious observations about a city that has been much maligned, but is obviously still dear to Caitlin’s heart.

Here are some of the highlights

Chubb Building

‘…I worked as an usherette at the Lighthouse Cinema, and saw Edward Scissorhands 47 times. It became a primary influence of my sexuality, and I could still get into a state of arousal if faced by a man with shears for hands…’

The Prince Albert Statue

‘…The mon on the ose (horse) was Prince Albert and Queen Victoria traveled to see if. But there had been a mistake made with the legs. This was pointed out to the sculptor who then committed suicide. And that, people, is Wolverhampton’s main tourist attraction. ..’ (In fact – this is a myth, you can read more about this here.)

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Beatties

‘…Beatties is our Harrods. The poshest place in Wolverhampton…’

The Dorchester Nightclub (now a Casino)

‘…The Dorchester Nightclub had the ‘steps of truth’. This was where you would walk towards the bouncer reciting in your head a date of birth that would make you old enough to get in. You would count backwards in years to get to the right year. (Check out 1997 in episode 5, it’s always 1997!)

The Central Library

My period started in the Central Library. I hid behind a rack of Ruth Rendell and told my dad I had a belly ache. That’s where my menarche began.’ (At this point Caz said we would also pass the place her period had started, and encouraged the coach to guess and shout out where it might be, it turned out to be a local branch of Qwik Save – near the Liquor saver aisle.)

On passing a rather large sex shop

‘…If 50 shades of Grey happened in Wolverhampton, it would be a court case not a trilogy…’

Blunts Shoes

Blunts Shoes was where Caz and I were informed we had flat, fat feet and would never wear pretty shoes and were instead pointed in the direction of a men’s rack. I guess that’s when we knew we would never be pretty girls…’

Eastcroft

‘…Eastcroft is officially the steepest hill in Britain, forget Ben Nevis or Scafell Pike. I know because I had to walk up it every day. Eastcroft is the steepest hill in Britain…’

72 Envil Road, Warstones

‘…My childhood home. (Pointing to an upstairs window), That is where, after finding out my nan had died, I ate an whole Soreen loaf, hung out of the bedroom window singing ‘Yesterday’, and then vomited all over the porch roof…’

Caitlin and Caroline outside Envil Road

Caitlin and Caroline outside Envil Road

Childhood memories

At 11 I applied for a job at Comic Relief and received a really lovely letter from Lenny Henry. It was my prize possession for 5 days until I lost it on the Badger bus to Brewood…’

At this point we had reached our destination, Cineworld, where the popcorn, ice cream and drinks were on ice, waiting for us to be seated for the premiere of ‘Raised by Wolves‘.

In tomorrow’s post – you can read all about the series, and about a very special Q&A session hosted by Adrian Goldberg.

*With thanks to Leslie Land and Channel 4 for the invitation.

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