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And from a film about Picasso to one about 19th century British painter JMW Turner. A new feature-length biopic of the Romantic artists’s life, starring Timothy Spall, is being made by heavyweight Brit director Mike Leigh – and parts are to be shot right here in South Yorkshire. Cast and crew will decamp to Wentworth Woodhouse next month for a week. The magnificent pile – Britain’s biggest privately-owned stately home – is to double as the famous Royal Academy Of Art, in London, where the young Turner was educated. Fans can see the lavish drama on the BBC in 2014.


And talking of screen stars, a lovely tweet lands from Barnsley actor Shaun Dooley – that’s him who’s been in Coronation Street, Eastenders, The Street and Red Riding. “My 3yr old girl just dropped the phone whilst talking to me, picked it up, then asked if I was OK,” he says. “I had to tell her I wasn’t hurt.”


Happy birthday Rother Valley Country Park, then. This jewel is 30 years old today, as reported in this paper. And there are plenty of South Yorkshire folk who have had ‘many happy returns’ to the 750 acre site over the last three decades. Whether you like running, roaming, sailing, splashing or sitting and eating a barbecued sausage while others take the strain, it’s a genuinely great place to spend a sunshine-soaked afternoon. The sheer number of visitors – a million in the first year alone – are testament to that. And how fitting this birthday date falls on a Bank Holiday when it can be enjoyed most. Now let’s just hope the weather does its bit to ensure the celebration goes with a swing.


Sheffield Council staff took an average 12.36 days off sick last year, then? Nice work if you can get paid for it. Which they can.


Following on from The Star’s four-page pull-out on Whitesnake’s gig at the Arena, a colleague remembers an old joke: “What happened when someone shouted out ‘sexist rubbish!’ at one of their gigs?” The band thought it was a request for an encore and played some more.” They don’t tell ’em like they used to.