CAN I COOK IT… Among MIPIM’s top grafters have been Hipping Hall chef and Masterchef finalist Oli Martin and his sous chef Matthew Wildigg, who cooked for more than 100 guests over the course of four days, including Lancashire ambassador Andrew Flintoff. Martin, pictured here with the cricketer turned media everyman, has this week been named a Taste Lancashire ambassador. “It has been an incredible experience,” Martin said. “I was so pleased to have been asked to help with such important events for Lancashire and to be named a Taste Lancashire Ambassador. It was a very proud day for me, especially with Fred Flintoff in the room.”

Rounders Set

Image from Uber Sports

SPORTING CHANCE… Rounders is still a thing, who knew? Rounders England this week launched Roundersfest, a series of standalone open competitions for local league teams and newbies alike, aimed at broadening social circles and creating a fun way to keep active, while fostering team spirit and creating a sense of competition. Dan Newton at Rounders England, said: “You don’t have to be the fittest, the youngest or the most athletic,” so that’s a relief. He continued: “Rounders provides opportunities for people to take it seriously, compete to win and instil team spirit.” The Lancashire tournament takes place at Prairie Sports Village, Burnley on Saturday 1 June, so no one can say they haven’t been given fair warning. Catch the eye and you might yet end up opening the batting in The Ashes.


GOLDEN SLUMBERS… Wakey-wakey! It’s World Sleep Day today, which could present an opportunity for bleary-eyed MIPIMites to claim a legal obligation to get 16 hours of shut-eye. Online pharmacy Chemist4u has released a timely survey of 2,000 people, claiming that only 16% say they feel they get enough sleep at night. Apparently, 35% of people reckon they’d give up a portion of their salary for an extra hours sleep each night, although how big that portion would be is unclear. Predictably enough, technology gets it in the neck, with 46% admitting they spend time on social media in bed, while 44% check their emails and 53% browse the internet. Literally nobody’s making you do that, you know.

Manchester Flight

Manchester’s unexpected stop-off in Genoa

HIGH FLIERS… Most of this week’s conversations among MIPIMers have focused on the absolute nightmare that were Monday’s flights, with both Liverpool and Manchester attendees ending up with aborted landings due to the wind. Manchester’s flight, including pretty much the sum total of property’s great and good, ended up in Genoa for an hour after three aborted landings, before returning with a stomach-churning half-hour trip about an hour later, while others were diverted to Marseille and were forced to get the bus, meaning a few ended up hitting it a bit harder than planned on Monday night. Still spare a thought for one architect, who ended up getting stuck on a train toilet on his way to the conference midweek. We won’t be naming names.

BANTER BARRAGE… Despite the insisting that they’re “old friends”, THING couldn’t help but think the on-stage banter between Liverpool Mayor Joe Anderson and Manchester City Council leader Sir Richard Leese was getting a bit spiky when they met at the Manchester pavilion this week. Anderson suggested that the headphones provided so the audience could hear the speakers better were “for translating me, because Mancs can be a bit slow”. Commenting on the sparse audience, he reassured “don’t worry guys, it’s quality not quantity.” In response to Leese’s description of the turbulent Manchester flight that “we had waves last year, wind this year, and next year it’ll be pestilence”, Anderson chipped in “at least the Liverpool flight managed to land safely”. Leese, seemingly worn down: “They probably didn’t care if you made it or not.” Ouch.

Calderpeel Card

ACE IN THE DECK… Last year it was a hi-tech miniature inset screen, this year Calderpeel reverted to more old school processes to deliver another favourite card of MIPIM week, with this lazer cut and hand bound edition. With only a limited release of 164, THING feels honoured to have one, although wonders who has number one…

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