Quirky and funny stories in the Dunstable area

Dunstable town centre Christmas street lights

Dunstable town centre Christmas street lights

I have been seeing angels in Dunstable town centre. And snowmen. I even saw Santa up a lamppost.

No need to call the doctor. It really has been an illuminating experience – they are all part of the dazzling display of Christmas street lights in the heart of the town. Phew.

Giant sparkling globes, angels with trumpets, snowmen, Christmas trees, holly, stars, Santa shapes and garlands of multi-coloured lights are just some of the sparkling sights to be seen as dusk descends.

As always, the impressive display has been organised by Dunstable Town Council.

It’s a great way to add an extra touch of colour to the town centre and to put us all in the festive spirit.

And the switched-on approach certainly means visitors to Dunstable are sure to see the town centre ‘in the best light’...

A colleague tells me that she saw C. S. Lewis’s biographer A. N. Wilson at Whipsnade Zoo in a BBC Four documentary about “the man behind Narnia”.

Why was he at the zoo, I hear you ask.

I didn’t see the programme myself but I do know about the Whipsnade connection with the late C. S. Lewis, whose Narnia books include The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe.

An article in the national press prompted me to mention this a few years ago.

It told of how C. S. Lewis took a night-time walk with J. R. R. Tolkien, which brought the Narnia author to the brink of belief in Christianity.

A few weeks later, C. S. Lewis embarked on a motorbike journey with companions to – you guessed it – Whipsnade Zoo.

His memoir, called Surprised By Joy, related: “When I set out, I did not believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and when we reached the zoo, I did.”

At the zoo, he saw a bear that he liked, and named him Bultitude. What a great name for a bear.

Anyway, the BBC Four documentary (Narnia’s Lost Poet: The Secret Lives and Loves of C. S. Lewis) is sure to be broadcast again at some point, so do watch out for it.

Truth can be stranger than fiction...

Congratulations to Sam Bailey, this year’s worthy winner of The X Factor.

A friend says there is a rumour going around that she was born in Dunstable.

How interesting. Except that he had a quick look on Google, and found references to her having been born in Bexley. Oh well, never mind.

But typing in Sam Bailey on Google also brings up a Wikipedia reference to Samuel Bailey, a philosopher born in the late 1700s.

It says philosopher Sam Bailey was born in Dunstable.

Could this be how the rumours started about Sam from The X Factor?

Hang on a minute. Just to muddy the waters even further, the Wikipedia entry has philosopher Samuel down as being born in Dunstable AND Sheffield.

Ho hum. If Sam the singer really is from Dunstable, do let me know – we’ll be singing her praises if she is!

Grove Theatre panto Dick Whittington has been a big hit with audiences.

Delighted panto fans tell me there were a few jokey Dunstable references at the performance they saw.

And did the stars spend lots of time signing autographs for young fans?

Oh,yes they did!




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