Guest Post

Virtual Evening with George Parris

Ex Hammer George Parris is hosting a virtual evening later this month to raise money for charity.

George Parris

George, part of the Boys of 86 squad, will be answering questions and chatting with Hammers fans from 8pm on Friday 26th June.

The evening will be hosted on Zoom and last 90 minutes with places limited. People can secure their place “here”:https://blowing-bubbles.co.uk/2020/06/09/an-virtual-evening-with-george-parris/

It’s a minimum donation of £5 but there are other monetary options. Please give what you can

George said: “The evening will be tailored for those attending virtually, whether it’s listening to stories from my professional football career and the ups and downs, professionally or personally, or whether you want to ask all those questions you always wanted to ask an ex-professional footballer, but never had the opportunity.”

George is keen to get as many questions in advance so he, and fellow host David Blackmore – editor of Blowing Bubbles Monthly – can structure the evening and make it flow. Questions need to be sent to editor@blowing-bubbles.co.uk by 23.59 on Thursday 25th June.


Guest Post

West Ham fan launches Gladiators podcast with Jet

A West Ham fan and a superfan of 90s show Gladiators has created the dream job – co-hosting a new series of podcasts with none-other than the iconic Jet.

David Blackmore GladPod

David Blackmore, editor of fanzine “Blowing Bubbles Monthly”:https://blowing-bubbles.co.uk/subscribe/ , has been addicted to the show since he first saw it as a youngster with his family.

Fast forward almost three decades and he is co-presenting a brand new podcast devoted to the popular show – “GladPod”:https://the-gladpod.simplecast.com/ – which has brilliant interviews from gladiators, contenders and superfans like David.

“I was glued to the show, and Jet was by far and away my absolute favourite,” said the 33-year-old. “Gladiators had 14 million viewers at its peak – a figure that today’s shows can only dream about.

“It had everything for family Saturday night viewing, drama, fun, sport, a bit of ‘nasty’ and competition, a perfect combination.

“I was lucky enough to meet Jet a couple of years ago and we had a chat about how great the Gladiators series was and how much it’s still loved today."

He continued: "The idea for our podcast came from that and we have some great names joining us in our first series telling some fantastic stories of behind-the-scenes at the show.

“We celebrate the glory days, the disappointments and the stories of those involved from Gladiators like Jet to the first champion and the Gladiator who never was."

He added: “There are so many unexplored avenues that we have more than enough great material for the podcast.”

Jet and David Blackmore

The series may have ended at the turn of the millennium, but there is a huge appetite for the stars. “GladPod”:https://the-gladpod.simplecast.com/ has surged towards the top of the UK podcast charts and is also rising through the ranks in Ireland, America and Australia.

And speaking on “GladPod”:https://the-gladpod.simplecast.com/ this week, Jet, aka Diane Youdale, revealed Gladiators could return to our screens in the near future.

“A little bird has told me that there is something on the table that looks gladiatorial and will possibly be around for our 30th year. Maybe there’ll be a version of it,” said the 50-year-old.

But could Diane be persuaded to don lycra again and hang tough?

“You couldn’t pay me enough to go back and do it again, but I think the concept of having these larger-than-life superhero gladiator people is timeless. And I think that’ll always work. I wouldn’t change a thing about my time as a gladiator.”

Now aged 50, Diane would also love another chance to step in front of the camera again. “Dancing on Ice or Strictly would be my absolute dream,” she said. “It’s always usually youngsters who win, but I think I could do something for ladies of a certain age.”

You can listen to The “GladPod”:https://the-gladpod.simplecast.com/ via “podcast.gladiatorstv.com”:https://the-gladpod.simplecast.com/ or through all major podcast suppliers by searching for “The Gladpod”. Get in touch with the podcast with your Gladiators stories by emailing podcast@gladiatorstv.com


Guest Post

Father's Day gift idea from West Ham fanzine

Are you looking for the perfect Father’s Day gift for your West Ham-supporting Dad? Blowing Bubbles might just have the answer!

Blowing Bubbles June 2020

The monthly magazine has a Father’s Day offer of 25% off their 10-issue hard copy subscriptions for UK, European and International Hammers.

To take advantage of this offer, visit "blowing-bubbles.co.uk/subscribe”:https://blowing-bubbles.co.uk/subscribe/ and enter FathersDay in the coupon section when checking out with either a UK, Europe or International 10-issue subscription.

Editor David Blackmore, who launched the fanzine in 2012, says anyone purchasing a subscription as a gift for their father will be able to present them with a copy of their June issue on Sunday, 21 June.

“Our June issue is an extraordinary issue in an extraordinary time,” David says. "It’s a terrific memento that beautifully captures life for a West Ham fan since March when we published our last issue. 

“It’s arguably one of the best issues we’ve ever produced and I’m sure West Ham Dads up and down the country would love to receive a copy of our June issue on Father’s Day with the promise of nine more to come!”

Blowing Bubbles’ June issue is dedicated to key workers and is their first cover image to not involve a West Ham player. It comes after they weren’t able to print in April and May because their printers were closed.

David continued: "When Boris Johnson announced our lockdown measures, our lockdown measures back in March, it didn’t even cross my mind that this would impact our operation, somewhat ignorantly. If anything, I thought it would give us the opportunity to provide a bit of escapism for you each month.

“As we were applying the final touches to what would have been our April issue, our printers got in touch to say they were stopping the presses. So for the first time since 2012, the Blowing Bubbles express was held up in March (it’s a real place you know, in Cambridgeshire!), waiting for a green light to continue. 

“But while the Premier League and the production of our magazine was no match for coronavirus, I think it’s so important that we always remember those who have helped stop it in its tracks.

“Our June issue is dedicated to all of our key workers. From those working in health and social care, education, childcare, food and other necessary. And to those working for key public services, utility workers, public safety, national security, and transport – we wanted to salute the part they’ve played to help keep us safe.

“The past few months have been extraordinary and so is this issue. It’s another step towards a new normal. What the future holds for this magazine – and the football world – remains unclear right now but hopefully a new path will emerge.”


Guest Post

Delve into Blowing Bubbles Magazine's digital archive

Blowing Bubbles Monthly Magazine have made their back issues available to read online, for free! Their new digital archive contains more than 80 issues of the magazine for your enjoyment any time, on any device. You can delve into their digital archive here

The cover of Blowing Bubbles' 100th issue

If you’re new to Blowing Bubbles, you can expect big interviews, columns written by former Hammers and a plethora of opinions. All pieces are written by West Ham fans, for West Ham fans. Over the years, they’ve had some extraordinary interviews with the likes of Pele, David Gold and Mark Noble as well as former players such as John Hartson, Tony Cottee and Dean Ashton, to name but a few. They’re now all available to read in the digital archive.

There are also many timeless pieces to flick through. In previous issues they’ve counted down the best players in West Ham’s history, given their best XI in the Premier League years and ranked managers from worst to best. They love to get feedback from readers with similar or contrasting opinions to their team – it’s all part of being dedicated supporters of a club. Now, more than ever, they’re hoping to keep conversations going, meet new people online and get talking.

Editor David Blackmore said: “We’re really excited be able to offer so many of our back issues online. It’s taken a lot of effort to get everything uploaded but it’s absolutely worth it. Covid-19 has changed everyone’s lives in some way and if we can offer people some light relief or an opportunity to get some sport back into their lives as a way of relaxing, then we’re glad to do it.”

Blowing Bubbles editor David Blackmore

For those of you who don’t know them too well, Blowing Bubbles has evolved over the last seven and a bit years into a monthly print and digital offering with thousands of dedicated readers every month. Blowing Bubbles is the brainchild of David Blackmore who, following West Ham’s promotion to the Premier League in 2012, decided to fully commit to actioning the idea he’d had for a while. Over the years, he recruited great writers who shared a similar passion for the Hammers. 


Guest Post

Fanzine pledge to those in Coronavirus self-isolation

Our partners Blowing Bubbles have pledged to send a copy of their latest issue to West Ham supporters in self-isolation because of the coronavirus crisis.

Blowing Bubbles editor David Blackmore

Editor David Blackmore has said there are only a limited number of copies left but he was keen to make sure they go to those in need in the UK.

“As coronavirus engulfs the world, with increasing numbers putting themselves in self-isolation as a response to the growing pandemic, it is easy to become swept up in the doom and gloom.

“But I want West Ham supporters to know there are kind-hearted people out there – particularly those I’ve seen on social media – who are shrugging off the sense of apocalypse by offering to lend a helping hand to those in need.

“At the end of the day, no matter what we look like, where we live, or how much money we have, getting sick reminds us that at our core we’re all just human. And in every country it’s the old, the sick and those already struggling who will be affected worse.

“That’s why we want to hear from those in self-isolation, or from the friends and family of those in self-isolation because we want to do our bit to make sure that no one in our community is being left to face this crisis without any act of kindness towards them.

“If just one person feels less lonely or isolated when faced with this pandemic, because they’ve had our latest issue posted to them, then our team will feel better about it.”

Contact David on editor@blowing-bubbles.co.uk and make sure include your details, and the details of those in self-isolation.


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