They have opened my eyes to a very different world

If there is one film I'd urge you to see this year, it's A Street Cat Named Bob.

Tuesday, 22nd November 2016, 6:01 am
Updated Tuesday, 22nd November 2016, 12:09 pm
A scene from A Street Cat Named Bob

Honestly, it’s one of the most poignant films I’ve ever had the pleasure to watch.

It’s humbling and heartrending and charts the real life story of James Bowen who, because of family problems, found himself living on the streets and using heroin to escape the harsh realities of being homeless.

A decade later he was living in a grotty flat and busking around London to make a few quid and had enrolled himself on a methadone programme.

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One evening he arrived home to find a ginger cat in his hallway. Initially he put the cat back outside, but the determined feline kept returning, so James decided to keep the stripey moggy, who he had now named Bob.

The ginger tom wasn’t content to be just a housecat though and started following James to work, getting on the bus with him.

The pair started to attract lots of attention as they busked and sold The Big Issue together in Covent Garden with people eager for selfies with this huge, green- eyed orange cat.

Videos began to appear online. After all, it’s not every day you see a moggy wearing a knitted scarf and perched on the shoulders of a man strumming a guitar.

James ended up with a book deal, which has now led to a movie, with James being played by Olivier Award winner Luke Treadaway.

But he plays second fiddle to the cat who transformed his owner’s life and won the hearts of millions of fans.

It’s a rags to riches story and an honourable attempt to put more money in Bowen’s pocket and shine a rare light on homelessness and addiction.

Until I read the books and The Big Issue, I had no idea about how dire being homeless and living on the streets was.

They have opened my eyes to a different world that I knew existed but barely thought about. I didn’t know how the magazine worked, how it helps the homeless. Now I’m a regular customer.

Meanwhile, Sigmund Freud once said ‘time spent with cats is never wasted’.

He was right.


The other morning I woke up feeling extremely sick.

It wasn’t because I’d been on the vino or eaten a dodgy kebab the night before.

No, it was actually because I’d switched on my television to find that Donald Trump was now president-elect of America.

What the hell is going on with people? Eight years ago Americans voted in Barack Obama and now they go and vote in somebody who, to me, appears to be racist.

The world has gone completely mad. How is it possible that a reality TV star beat the most competent candidate in history for the presidency?

It doesn’t reflect well on the society we live in.Women have a long way to go before we are treated equally.

It’s still a man’s world.


have imposed a drinking ban on myself after a reunion lunch with two old school pals turned into a rather boozy event that drifted from midday to midnight.

I have been told this, but the truth is I can’t remember a darn thing about it.

All I know is that I woke up with a truly thumping headache the next day – a day when I had an important work meeting to attend.

I thought I’d left the pub the previous evening at 6pm. But it turns out that it was actually six hours later when we called time on our get-together.

I was bundled into a taxi after getting up on the bar and shouting: ‘I am Bridget Jones, where the hell is my Mr Darcy?’

Never again on a school night.