The main Southbourne events of Shake and Stir, and Frankenfest are always well supported and more importantly, FREE.

Although it is free to the public it costs money to hire the acts, for security and even to close the road off.

Local sponsors have been very generous and we hope that continues, and even more come forward this year.

Members of the public have also been very generous. Even if everyone were to give 50p per head, that really goes to help fill the gaps, ensures we don't keep worry about finances up to the very end and can commit to booking the best acts earlier.

Once we know more about the organising committee, what access to funds we might have or to bid for, we will let the community know.

Well 2018 was a pretty fun year to say the least. Lots happening in work and social life.

Me and Angela reached our 50th birthdays and had massive parties to boot. Not saying totally unscathed, but we won't talk about that :-)

Our Southbourne Grove high street was rocking all year long and good times were had.

Social Media, Video Media, #sobomile project all got going. Unfortunately things have stalled on moving forward with a Neighbourhood Plan. It's all about time...

I have a feeling 2019 is going to be even better.

I've ventured further afield for my latest little local foodie video. This time it is the Pokesdown Mile, ha ha.

Hopefully other people will pick up on doing something for say the Charminster Mile or the Winton Mile.

I really wanted to do something for the end of November so that people could get some ideas for drinks to go with their Christmas Day meal, but things didn't line up locally in Southbourne. I contacted Jim who said yes at the drop of a hat and I was able to get this video out three days before Christmas. Anyway, it doesn't matter whether it is Christmas or not as Jim's suggestions work equally well for any celebration dinner, or if you just want one bottle to enjoy.

 Jim covers sparkling wines that help to start the day off with a bucks fizz using a Prosecco for example and something a bit more to kick off the main dinner. A Cremant d'Alsace makes an interesting alternative.

There's a range of white wines that even includes a Chardonnay as the top end pick. Then a few red wines in the form of a Rioja, a Malbec and a stunning blend.

To go with dessert there is a sweet dessert wine, a port and a amaretto. The nightcap comes in as a cognac.

I was pretty chuffed when I did my first interview with Rupert back in the summer as part of kicking off the Sobo Mile project in earnest.

It was pretty raw and basic but I learnt a few things along the way with regards to setting up, recording and editing video. This isn't my job so just doing the best I can, but it's getting a bit better.

Anyway, during the first interview he hinted at launching a new product but because the commercials hadn't been signed, he couldn't talk about it. I said I'd like to come back and get the first video interview with him once it is public. He graciously gave me some time in busy December for me to pop in and catch up.

Rupert talks about this new collaboration with the RNLI on a Navy Strength Gin, about a Port Barrel aged gin that he didn't even hint at last time so that was more of a surprise when I saw it launched. There's also other design upgrades that he talks about in the video. Enjoy.

I'm giving the 2019 You Are The Media Conference (23 May 2019, Shelley Theatre, Bournemouth) a plug here and I will tell you why.

I admit, I am a big fan of the You Are The Media ecosphere. I’ve attended their Lunch Clubs from day one, receive the weekly email, been to one of their workshops and went to the first Conference.

It has given me a lot and I have taken a lot. It hasn’t turned me into a master marketer, that won’t happen. It’s given me more than that, it’s given me the confidence to be me and to try things out.

From that confidence I have got stuck into community based projects, public and personal. I organised a Cyber Security Awareness event, not knowing what the appetite was, but knew I wanted to do it regardless of the fear of failing. Seven speakers, two MPs and one Police and Crime Commissioner getting involved is pretty good.