International News/ England

England-Hello, I’m English. Here is the news.

It’s been a good few months, with retail sales picking up. After an initial glut of cheap and discounted products, the market has opened up a little more. Hardgoods sales seem to be on the rise. Softgoods sales, on the other hand, seem to be slowing.

Less High Street interest? Or just another effect of the slump we are all pretending isn’t happening? Recent economic reports are varied, with some calling this the tail end of a cycle that’s about to ramp up. Others point to the current world crisis and what seems to be a very uncertain future. Mervyn King, the new governor of the Bank of England, warned that the consumer boom is over. This guy runs a really big bank, and I think he knows what’s going on. Either way, the show must go on and on and on.

Fire!

New Deal UK is picking up the pieces after a fire on Friday, August 8, 2003. All staff were fortunately out of the building at the time of the blaze. Local residents caused problems by congregating to watch the inferno. The blaze was reported as being the size of two football pitches-it took more than 100 firemen over seven hours to put the blaze out. Police are not suspicious as to the cause of the fire.

Landscape Premiered

Landscape Skate Company has released its first video, Portraits. At a low-key premiere in London’s Price Charles Theater, the talents of Toby Shuall, Olly Todd, Snowy, and Sheffield’s Joel Curtis were rolled out for all to see.

No rest for the wicked-producer and filmer Chris Massey’s skills are required for a collaboration on Josh Stewart’s Static video, to be released sometime soon.Good weather makes skaters want to travel, so Blueprint has taken its crew on tour, hitting several spots around the UK over the course of ten days. All accounts point to a storming success, with Blueprint mania sweeping the UK and Europe.

Unabomber Skateboards is approaching the touring idea slightly differently by spending one weekend a month in a different part of the UK, filming for its upcoming video, and touring local spots and parks. The In Your Town tour will run indefinitely.

Unabomber has also just released its new Brian McFeeley Mentalist series. Sounds like a bit of a mouthful? The graphics are a photo-illustrative collaboration. They look fresh and hark back to the days when skateboard graphics mattered.

Unabomber is happy to welcome Conhuir Lyn to its ranks. Ireland is proving to be a hotbed of untapped talent.

Trafalgar Square saw the arrival of the V2003 Gillette Vert Skateboardng series. Not since Tony Alva and the Alva team toured in the mid 70s has there been a skate event in such a prestigious location. A 36-foot-wide vertical ramp was erected, and the tour featured Ali Cairns, Jokke Olsen, Peter King, and Pierre Luc Gagnon, who each put on an impressive show. Over 3,000 spectators showed up for the event and loved it. Witnessing skateboarding in such a grand environment was an incredible experience. The tour went on to the V Festival, where the skaters got to rub shoulders with the likes of Oasis star Noel Gallagher and perform demos for screaming festival-goers.

That’s it for this month. Onwards and upwards, my friends.-Pete Hellicar