My Weekend: Paul Benge

Paul Benge
Paul Benge

THIS WEEK IN 1984: Navy defends nums over playtime row

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Paul Benge, 31, and lives in Southsea. He’s assistant general manager at Tiger Tiger Portsmouth in Gunwharf Quays, overseeing private functions, the restaurant, nightclub and bars.

When did you last go away and where did you go?

I went to Holland for the weekend with a group of friends to attend Sensation White, an electronic dance music festival held in the Amsterdam ArenA.

What was the last gig you went to?

The 20th birthday party for Def Mix at Ministry of Sound back in March. Before that, I went to V Festival last summer and watched The Stone Roses play.

What about the last theatre show you saw?

That was when I went to see Derren Brown perform at London’s Shaftesbury Theatre in the West End.

The last book you read?

The Hacienda: How Not to Run a Club by Peter Hook. It tells the story of the Manchester club which was owned by Factory Records and New Order and how, in the 1980s and ’90s, it created a music scene that supported the likes of Happy Mondays, and hosted live performances from Oasis, James, Blur, OMD and Echo & the Bunnymen.

The last film you saw at the cinema or on DVD?

I really enjoy all types of film – action, historical, comedy . But the last one I saw was Iron Man 3 which was great entertainment.

What’s your favourite way to relax?

Going out for a meal with friends. My first choice would be a Thai restaurant and my favourite is Mango Tree in London’s Belgravia.

What do you watch on TV?

I don’t watch a lot, but when I get in from work, I like to unwind with something short like an episode of Family Guy, American Dad or Top Gear.

And which TV programmes do you avoid?

The Only Way Is Essex. The show is set in Brentwood, which is the neighbouring town to where I grew up and I can assure you, it does not reflect Essex. It really makes me cringe. I would prefer it if it were called The Only Way is Brentwood.

Which celeb would you most like to spend a weekend with?

Someone who has been extremely successful like Steve Jobs or Richard Branson. Branson has done it all – travelling, exploring, building businesses – and yet he seems really grounded and approachable. I would just ask questions, listen and hope the wisdom and experience rubbed off on me.

Where do you eat out?

Lately, I seem to be gravitating towards Italian restaurants. There are loads in Gunwharf – Strada, Zizzi and Jamie’s Italian.

What about pubs and bars? Where do you go?

Maybe because I work in bars, I prefer to socialise in pubs. I can also happily relax and read the paper over a quiet drink. I like The Old Customs House in Gunwharf and Albert Road.

Where’s good for a day out locally?

Taking a boat out with Sunsail from Port Solent.