VERITY LUSH: I’m not sure that Sarah’s list provides a full picture

Sarah Beeny

Sarah Beeny

Stephen Morgan MP

Portsmouth South MP Stephen Morgan: Hectic start, but election is just the beginning

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This seemed akin to filming Guildhall Walk at midnight on a Friday and using it on Right Move to flog houses

Standards of education and health were all inextricably linked to wealth. The places chosen – Sheffield for example – didn’t strike me as places where I would imagine myself being happiest, but the guinea pigs for the show were all swayed by the expendable income that would be theirs if they only moved away from the extortionate house prices of London and the south east, and opened themselves up to a leafy northern existence with countryside and a host of outstanding schools.

Interestingly, the statistician they employed did voice his own opinion that if you find an outstanding school within an area of social deprivation – where the value added is subsequently very high – you may well be on to a better thing than an outstanding school in an affluent area where all the families are financially able to indulge in extra curricular activities and private maths and literacy tuition is at their disposal.

I was shocked – until I saw their criteria – that being near beautiful coastline wasn’t mentioned.

Countryside galore was bandied about, but not a drop of salt water. I was even more surprised – again until they specified their search criteria – that Cornwall wasn’t in the running, or indeed any part of the west country. Instead, Manchester ranked highly and random scenes of sozzled and socialising twenty-somethings (not something I have an issue with – who isn’t sozzled and socialising in their twenties? But not an advert for relocating your family), were depicted in a bid to illustrate Beeny’s point. This seemed akin to filming Guildhall Walk at midnight on a Friday and then using it on Right Move in a bid to flog houses here.

Pompey was not mentioned. And I didn’t need to hear the search criteria to be shocked by that.

Much as I love the city, its reputation among non-locals leaves much to be desired.

A tip from a mother: take the children to see the mummies

I took my children to the British Museum this week. They’ve wanted to see the Egyptian exhibits for months and they weren’t disappointed.

If you’re looking for a trip to occupy the offspring, then I fully recommend it.

My youngest’s face, when confronted with actual mummies, was one of astonishment. It was probably the first time that she experienced the awe that history can sometimes bring. A worthwhile contrast to a mummy trailing bog roll on Scooby Doo.

The range of sarcophagi and treasures from the tombs is vast, and that slight discomfort that lingers having heard tales of curses on those who disrupted them, is palpable. The museum is free and the gift shop affordable. Well worth a visit!

Risks of being a drug guinea pig make you think twice

Would you sign up to be the first human to take part in a pharmaceutical test for a new drug?

A ‘first in man’ test (the androcentric language is not mine, apologies!) is when the drug has previously only ever been tested on animals.

It’s 11 years now since TGN 1412 was tested in humans, producing inflammatory reactions so severe that one poor man, Ryan Wilson, who was only 21 at the time, lost his fingertips, and had to have parts of his feet amputated.

The men were left writhing in agony, swelling and vomiting, and making headlines worldwide.

Drug testing has subsequently had tighter regulations since but, considering possible long-term effects as well as short term, would you risk it?

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