Saturday, 16 March 2013


Well my time on the White City estate has come to a temporary close and we’ve selected the people who are going to be singing major solos in the film. We have an embarrassment of riches; a wonderful selection of people from the estate who'll be sharing their stories with us.

There’s a host of fascinating people with extraordinary stories and I’m almost frightened to start the process of writing, because I want to do it properly. I don’t want to let anyone down.

We spent the day holed up in a corner of the Community Centre and met a number of people; many of whom we’d met before and were just coming back for a natter, which is probably a very good sign.

Two ladies came in to show me one of their knitted rugs. They're part of a gang of five women from the curiously named Batman Close who meet once a week to knit blankets, which they sell for £20 and use the proceeds to fund occasional taxis to their favourite fish restaurant. They're an absolute riot and they love to laugh.

I went to watch a group of Irish dancers at lunchtime and was impressed. They showed me a little routine which involved a huge amount of leg kicking and foot tapping. At the end of their dance, the door to the room they were in burst open, and a young lad with Down’s Syndrome tapped his way across the front of the space. I was relieved and touched to discover that he was part of the act.

At the very end of the day, a charming young lass came in, and put the final piece into the jigsaw. I’m not sure I’ve ever met such a self-assured and intelligent 16-year old, with such strong and articulate views, and I wouldn’t be surprised if she became an MP one day. She's her mother's official carer and has been since the age of five. Her mother became disabled whilst giving birth to her. An epidural went horribly wrong. There are people in this world who are doing remarkable things on a daily basis. The rest of us don't know that we're born.

Right, that’s me finished for the day. I've just booked myself in for a coma.

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