Thursday, April 30, 2009

Cleveland Medal final line-up decided

The Cleveland Medal - the highest award in Manx singing - a gold disc which is traditionally given every year by the Manx Society of Cleveland, OH at the end of the Manx Music Festival, is soon to be decided. The six competitors who won their special solo classes at the Villa Marina earlier this week to go through to the Cleveland Medal Test on Saturday will be contralto Jane Mayne, tenor Ernie Thorn, soprano Jane Corkill, baritone John Qualtrough, mezzo soprano Mandy Griffin and bass Glynn Morris. See here.

It promises to be a dramatic final – Ms Mayne and Ms Corkill competed in last year's final, meanwhile Mr Thorn and Ms Griffin are past winners. Terry Qualtrough, last year's Cleveland winner was beaten in his class by Glynn Morris of Sale in Lancashire.

Information [I can't find a photo of a Cleveland medal and would love one for my files]
The Manx Competitive Music, Speech and Dance Festival or The Manx Music Festival , as it is more commonly known, or The Guild , as it is known locally, had its origins in The Isle of Man Fine Art and Industrial Guild. It was during the fifth Annual Exhibition of this organisation, held in December 1892, that choir competitions were held for the first time. These were organised by Miss M L Wood, who became known as "the mother of music in the Isle of Man", and took place over just one day. Competition was accepted as the motivation for improvement in many spheres. From this humble beginning the "Music Guild" developed:

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

The IOM and Mexican Flu

The "swine" flu pandemic is causing the IoM to keep its citizens informed. I made a tiny url of the long link:

North American Manx Awards

The Isle of Man Department of Education is once again inviting nominations for the North American Manx Awards.

These Awards are presented each year on behalf of the North American Manx Association for outstanding achievement by young people on the Isle of Man. The Awards are arranged in five categories and for each category, a silver medal has been minted.

The Awards recognise the achievements of those under the age of 18. However, two new awards will recognise older recipients.

The categories are as follows:

1. Manx Music
2. Manx Art and Crafts
3. Manx Language

4. Outstanding contribution to Manx Culture
(a) By a student under the age of 18
(b) By a student over the age of 18
(c) By a group of young people under the age of 25

5. (a) Outstanding contribution to the Manx Community in general
(b) Overcoming disability.

You are invited to submit recommendations in respect of the above. If you wish to submit names, please contact the Department of Education on 685801 for a nomination form, alternatively, a downloadable form can be found using the following link

It would be helpful if you detailed the achievement of individuals concerned so that they can be compared with other candidates in the same category. It would be appreciated if nominations could reach the Department of Education by Friday 22 May 2009.


On 25 September 1978, the Convention of the North American Manx Association assembled at Rocky River, Ohio, and resolved to expend the sum of $1000 on a project to commemorate the Millennium of Tynwald 1979.

This Executive Committee determined that the NAMA Millennium Project should be the striking of silver medals to be awarded from 1979 onward to up to four Manx Youth, not exceeding 18 years old, for outstanding achievement in the areas of Manx Language, Manx Arts & Crafts, Manx Music and Manx Folk Dance. The Committee also agreed that from time to time, there might also be an award for outstanding achievement in any area of Manx Heritage.

On 22 November 1978, Mrs Robert S Cowin, President of the Association, was directed by Mr Edward F Sayle of the North American Manx Association to liaise with the Millennium Committee of Tynwald to submit the proposal and suggestions for implementation and to appoint a Committee, on the Isle of Man to develop and implement the project from that year.
It was specified that the Award Ceremony should be held sometime between May and September in order that NAMA members may attend. The names of the winners were to be published in the Bulletin of the NAMA for members’ information.

On 3 December 1978 Edward F Sayle of Arlington, Virginia wrote to Mrs Betty Hanson MHK, Chairman of the Millennium Committee of Tynwald, proposing the establishment of a perpetual award project, to be administered by a committee consisting of the:

Chairman of the Isle of Man Arts Council
Director of Education
Chairman of the Manx Music Festival Committee
Principal of the Isle of Man Arts Society

to honour outstanding achievement of Manx Youth. Tynwald were to give wide latitude for the Committee to administer the project.

NAMA agreed to fund the design, die preparation and striking of medals in silver by Pobjoy Mint and for these to be replenished when they ran out.

On 30 October 1979 Major Geoffrey T Crellin MLC JP wrote to Alun Davies, Director of Education, advising that a strong recommendation had been made by the adjudicators of the Millennium Art Competition that the work of Steven Martin, a student of Castle Rushen High School, should be considered for the silver medal for an outstanding contribution to Art and Julie Patrick was recommended for her contribution to Manx Language.

In September 1984 the categories were changed slightly to encompass awards for outstanding contribution to the Manx community in general and to a handicapped youngster as recognition for outstanding efforts in overcoming the handicap.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Chelsea Gowland – Proud to be representing Isle of Man in Malta!

CHELSEA GOWLAND is heading to Malta on Wednesday to represent the Isle of Man in an International Hit Song Festival.

Sixteen year old Chelsea will be singing the song which has been recorded especially for the TTXGP, the world’s first clean emissions motorcycle race, and will be competing alongside nine other countries. She is featured on a new version of John Mayer’s ‘Waiting on the World to Change’ along with other singers and musicians from the Island, which has been recorded especially for the Race. The song was produced by Dave Armstrong of Dam Productions and Running Media.

Hon Martyn Quayle MHK, Minister for Tourism and Leisure, met Chelsea earlier this week to wave her on her way with a selection of Manx goodies to distribute in Malta, including a Manx Loaghtan lamb mascot. He said:

‘We are all excited and supportive of Chelsea representing the Isle of Man and wish her the very best of luck in the International Hit Song Festival in Malta this Friday. She has certainly done very well indeed to qualify and it is fantastic that she will actually be wearing the Manx flag and singing the song which has been recorded especially for the TTXGP. She is a great ambassador for our Island and I’m sure this is just the start of a long career in singing.’ The TTXGP will be held during this year’s TT Races on the Isle of Man and will take place at 10.45am on June 12th before the Senior TT blue riband event.

Warm Wishes from Manx Radio on the Isle of Man:

I would like to introduce myself as the new presenter for Manx Radio Connections, our show that is dedicated to reaching out to the World Manx Associations. I will be taking over where Ashey Bentley left off with the Live request show, which airs on Manx Radio 17:00-20:00 every Sunday afternoon across the Isle of Man on AM and FM and around the world on the Internet.

Whilst keeping the same theme, we also have some exciting new features. "You can't go anywhere" is a good-humoured look at how whenever you leave the Island you always seem to bump into a Manxie. It happens all the time. Our Connectcam will hopefully take keeping in touch to the next level, where live messages or even a simple wave can be streamed directly into your homes via the studio Webcam.

We would also like to offer our services by way of a weekly link up, to keep you in touch with Manxies worldwide. If you have any messages or dedications from your members, please e-mail them to me on

I hope this letter finds you well and I would love to hear from you in the future.

Very best wishes,
Ashlea Tracey

Monday, April 27, 2009

American in TT

Scott Jensen is from North Dakota although he now lives in Loveland CO. He will be competing in the Isle of Man TT this year for PRF racing. Professional AMA Motorcycle Roadracer Scott ‘Scooter’ Jensen has been racing the pro circuit for the past nine years, competing in the AMA Superbike and the AMA Superstock series. Most recently Scott finished 5th overall in Superstock and 12th overall in Superbike. 2007 brought Scott a third-place podium finish in the Superstock race at Road America. He was also named 'Best Small Truck Rider' by Road Racer X Mag i
More later!
Scott Jensen
AMA Superbike #61

Fun weekend in the DC Metro area

Saturday was the beautiful day for the Celtic Festival of Southern Maryland. Bill, Mim and I took the booth on the road and spread the Manx word. We even picked up an new family for the GWAMS: Welcome to Jamie and Trisha Brew. Jamie's grandfather was in NAMA.

At night we headed back to D.C. for the Spring Dinner of the Greater Washington Area Manx Society where we had our elections for the next two years and were greatly entertained by one of our former Presidents, Honora Finklestein and her co-author, Sue Smily. They write detective novels around a central character who is half-Manx ( and I had asked them to celebrate my swansong as President with a murder entertainment. Well, they were brilliant! We had a great deal of audience participation as we read through our scripts -- each reader not knowing what came next -- as the suspense over the outine of a corpse on the restaurant floor mounted. There was a taped off crime scene and a real policeman - the real-life Alexandria cop on whom their character Greg Mason is based. [NAMA - please note - The ladies are prepared to do this at a Convention.]

Friday, April 24, 2009

OMG! I don't believe it

After a zillion years of telling me he's going online he finally made it -- well mostly. John Wood (pictured here), co-owner of Laxey Woollen Mills with his sister Dian, has been promising me that he'll put the mill online. Well, of course he hasn't, but what he has done is open a cool new shop in Douglas called Mostly Manx (Nelson Street opposite the M&S parking lot for those who know the area) which has a website. It's a co-operative for Manx artisans and is very cool according to my Aunty Esther.

Now, John, will you PLEASE, put the Mill online and satisfy the cravings of your American audience.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Countdown to the TT

They're all getting hot to trot in the IoM. Just weeks from the TT, and the new Green bike race, the opening parties have been held and the tension is mounting. The Manx papers are all over it and the IoM Today website is covering a lot of it. Nearer the time, Manx Radio splits off its frequencies and turns over a channel to the TT. I'll see if they do it online.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Letter from Vienna

Jim Kneale of GWAMS received this letter from a gentleman in Vienna:

Your members may be interested in the Chiollagh Books www site which contains a range of printed material relating to the Island available for free download. Please spread the word!

Mag. Stephen Miller
Austrian Academy of Sciences,
Centre for Cultural Research,
Wien, Austria.

I'm sure you all know that Chiollagh -- pronounced chol-ag with the 'o' as in orange--means hearth or fireplace.

It has a number of very interesting downloads including these:

Printed Titles

  • William Cashen, William Cashen’s “Manx Folk-Lore” (1993) [X]

  • Thomas H. Kinrade, Life at the Lhen (Kirk Andreas): “Notes on the Largagh and Lhane Moar Districts of Kirk Andreas” (1993) [X]

  • Charles Roeder, Skeealyn Cheeil-Chiollee: Manx Folk Tales (1993) [X]

  • W.W. Gill, Customs & Traditions, Cures & Charms, Fairies & Phantoms (1993) [X]

  • David Craine, Mannanan’s Isle: Selected Essays (1) (1994) [X]

“Print-on-Demand” Series

  • A.W. Moore, Manx Folk-Songs: Taken from “Manx Music and Ballads” 1896 (1994) [X]

  • Mona Douglas, Manx Folk-Song, Folk Dance, Folklore: Collected Writings (1994) [X]

  • A.M. Crellin, Manx Folklore: Fairy Legends, Customs and Belief (1994) [X]

  • John Rhys, Manx Folklore and Superstitions (1994) [X]

  • Manx Folkways: A Gleaning of Writings, Number One (1994) [X]

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Hearthrob goes insane in Isle of Man

From an interview with movie director Gus Van Sant:

GUS VAN SANT: I wanted to ask you about this Richard Linklater film. Is it Orson and Me?

ZAC EFRON: Me and Orson Welles.

VAN SANT: Where did you shoot that?

EFRON: Rick was brilliant, because he found this great theater on the Isle of Man, which, after a little bit of work, looked a whole lot like the Mercury Theatre did in 1937. We took a beautiful theater and made it look rusty and old and dusty, and, once we filled it with extras dressed in 1930s attire, the place was very believable. It even smelled like an old theater. It was pretty neat because we were basically stuck there—you know, we couldn’t leave. There was nowhere to go on the Isle of Man. So we lived in that theater for several weeks. It was fun and exciting, but it was also kind of maddening. I went a little bit insane.

VAN SANT: The Isle of Man—they have a small community there.

EFRON: Yeah, so as soon as they figured out that we were filming there, everyone in the town knew. There was always a small group of onlookers out in front of the theater while we were filming. It was pretty funny.

Monday, April 20, 2009

First trans-Atlantic business jet to be based in the Island

Wow! How cool is this? It's a new Cessna Citation and it can fly across the Atlantic. It's $17 million worth of uber-smart traveling and someone on the IoM owns it. We don't officially know who yet but being the Island I'm sure we'll know soon enough. Read more here.

I'm sorry I didn't blog over the past few days but I was traveling back from Doha, Qatar. Believe me, I'm really glad to be home.

Washington Manx: Don't forget to sign up for the Manx Murder Dinner on Saturday at Pier 7. And try and get to the Southern Maryland Celtic Festival on Saturday as well. It's a huge event and great fun.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

'Lost' Hoggatt picture bought for £14.99

A HOUSEWIFE stands to make a small fortune with the sale of a lost Manx treasure. Linda Culpin, of Edenbridge, Kent, paid just £14.99 ($22.35) for a painting by the famous artist William Hoggatt whose home was in the Island.

Since she bought it from a second-hand shop more than a week ago, Mrs Culpin has had the watercolor painting priced at between £1,500 and £2,000 by auctioneers and valuers Bonhams and has decided to put it up for auction.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Easter art exhibition

President of the Isle of Man Art Society Margaret Oates and Norma Corlett with a painting by Iris Burton of Meayll Circle, Rushen.

Isle of Man Art Society's Easter Exhibition at the Villa Marina, Douglas. The event is the biggest art event in the Island each year and features artwork by society members in a wide variety of media including watercolours, acrylics, oils, silk and pastels across a wide variety of subjects.

The Isle of Man Art Society
was formed in 1953 by 28 artists and has grown to more than 300 artists today.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009


Over 350 people from as far afield as Australia visited the Great Union Camera Obscura over the Easter weekend.

With eleven lenses and mirrors, visitors enter the darkness of the building and see panoramic views from all around Douglas bay. Watching real-time images of seagulls flying across the viewing boards and cars, boats and people going about their daily business is part of the fascination which has entertained visitors for more than 100 years.
Run by the Department of Tourism & Leisure and manned voluntarily by the Isle of Man Victorian Society, the Camera will be open for the Summer Season from 2nd May 2009 every weekend from 1.00pm to 4.00pm on Saturdays and 11.00am to 4.00pm on Sundays and Bank Holidays. If the flag is flying the Camera is open.

Hon Martyn Quayle, Minister for Tourism and Leisure, said:
‘It is pleasing to know that so many people took the time to visit the Camera Obscura during Easter. I hope that visitors and residents will support it this season and come and see all it has to offer. The Camera also provides a weekend attraction with a difference for visitors with a unique view of Douglas Bay.’
One of the few original Camera Obscuras to have survived the test of time, this wonderful example of Victorian ingenuity is undergoing a facelift at the moment and is being repainted.

Monday, April 13, 2009

New critters at the Wild Life Park

Everyone say Ahhhhh! There's a scutch of new creatures at Ballaugh.
Check them out here or download a video here.

Isle of Man Sportsman of the Year - again

Mark Cavendish was awarded with the IoM's top prize.
A packed house in the Royal Hall saw Cavendish, still only 23, receive the Isle of Man Bank-sponsored award to huge applause.

World Cup snowboardcrosser Zoƫ Gillings, tipped as Britain's best hope for a medal at next year's Winter Olympics, retained the IoM Bank-sponsored Sportswoman's award.

The under-21 male category, sponsored by Aon, was won by British Junior Road Race Champion Peter Kennaugh who accompanied Mark Cavendish in the recent Track World Cycling Championships in Poland.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Jeheiney Caisht

That's Good Friday in Manx. The day we have Hot Cross Buns.

Here's a recipe (although we have different crosses, a more traditional recipe is Delia Smith's here.) with US measurements from All


  • 3/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C)
  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 1 tablespoon instant powdered milk
  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 3/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg white
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon active dry yeast
  • 3/4 cup dried currants
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons milk

  1. Put warm water, butter, skim milk powder, 1/4 cup sugar, salt, egg, egg white, flour, and yeast in bread maker and start on dough program.
  2. When 5 minutes of kneading are left, add currants and cinnamon. Leave in machine till double.
  3. Punch down on floured surface, cover, and let rest 10 minutes.
  4. Shape into 12 balls and place in a greased 9 x 12 inch pan. Cover and let rise in a warm place till double, about 35-40 minutes.
  5. Mix egg yolk and 2 tablespoons water. Brush on balls.
  6. Bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for 20 minutes. Remove from pan immediately and cool on wire rack.
  7. To make crosses: mix together confectioners' sugar, vanilla, and milk. Brush an X on each cooled bun.

Peel's posh marina

The new marina is scheduled to open after Easter. There's a great new webcam on the House of Mananan that shows it in all its glory here. It's 120 berth facility with a 2,900 square metre boat park linked via a footbridge to the pontoons.

On the new boat park will be a temporary toilet and shower block. Permanent facilities will be incorporated into a development of the old boat park. The footbridge is on rollers where it meets the pontoons. The pontoons are fixed in place by black steel tubes that have been piled into the harbour bed. Caps will be fitted to their tops — but they allow the pontoons to rise and fall with the tide, without being able to float from their position. I'm looking forward to seeing what it looks like at low tide as the iconic image of Peel is of all the boats in the sand when the tide goes out.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Manx hero recognised

A RAMSEY-born soldier has been mentioned in dispatches in the latest list of honors announced in the London Gazette. James Adamson, 24, was serving in Afghanistan when he and a comrade ended up coming face-to-face with Taliban fighters in the Green Zone, a jungle-like area with only a few yards' visibility...more here

Letter from Isle of Man Newspapers to the UK Chancellor

Dear Mr Darling,

You will no doubt be aware of the developments last week that included the Isle of Man alongside the UK in the whitelist of tax co-operative jurisdictions – we congratulate you for managing to show the UK is as well regulated as the Isle of Man.

We trust you will be making clear in future references to the Isle of Man the Island's position as a co-operative jurisdiction, rather than dismissing the Island as a 'tax haven in the Irish Sea'.

Clearly, such a dismissive reference to the Island is extremely misleading and unhelpful and we are sure you will be acknowledging the OECD ranking of the Island in any future dealings with the Treasury select committee, where you made your misguided reference.

We hope you can confirm you will ensure this latest information, plus the fact the Isle of Man has signed up to more tax information exchange agreements than any other country, will be included in any future references you make to our nation.

Good luck with the UK economy and we look forward to hearing from you.

Yours sincerely

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Porpoise rescued

Stranded porpoise rescued by kindly onlookers.
A DISORIENTATED little porpoise had to be rescued from Derbyhaven beach where it was stranded this (Tuesday) morning.
The alert was raised by two passers-by walking their dog.

Two men sacrificed their jackets and they managed to use them to lift the porpoise into the water. But for 40 minutes – obviously still disorientated – they watched her swim near the shore.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Web cams

Check out the Isle of Man from some of the Web Cams here.
It looks like a great day in Peel. I wish they'd put one in Port St. Mary.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Does anyone understand this?

"And in spite of we already won over three million pounds’ value of townswoman give birth to each year, I am bloody stinging to won over more to assistance the Island’s producers and nest egg despite that mangle more.’ No, me neither. But it claims to be a Shoprite blog and is talking about the IoM, albeit in Yoda gibberish. Anyone know why a Spanish blog site has randomly translated this? And who are these townswomen laying the golden eggs?

Friday, April 3, 2009

We made the White List

To read this document, double click on it and it will open in a full page format.
No longer a tax haven, now we're a compliant international financial center. It's official. President Sarkozy got his wish granted at G20. Just say "Non" to tax havens. The IoM is now on the OECD White list of "good" centers which is a great tribute to the hard work of Tynwald and the IoM External Affairs department. Now we can hold our heads up proud with the likes of China and the US which, as we all know, are transparent, clean of drug money, free from financial scandals or dubious business enterprises and deplore banking secrecy. {hee,hee}

Oh, and for a good back story concerning the Chinese, French and the US, go here.

Outdoors Show - The Manx Experience

The Isle of Man stand at the Outdoors Show, held at the NEC in Birmingham, has been hailed a great success with participants reporting encouraging feedback with the prospect of many intending to visit the Isle of Man.

Some 5000 items of literature were handed out to visitors by the Department of Tourism and Leisure and the stand’s partners, representatives from the Venture Centre, Adventurous Experiences, the Mountain Biking Club, the Isle of Man Children’s Centre and Walking Festival Committee. During the Show over 1000 people took part in a prize draw to win an activity holiday for two in the Isle of Man.

Hon. Martyn Quayle, MHK, Minister for Tourism and Leisure, said:
‘The Outdoors Show is a fantastic opportunity to promote the Isle of Man and we are delighted with the response of visitors to our stand. People were pleased to see the Isle of Man exhibition and many said they would be thinking of visiting the Island this year, along with a huge number who wanted more information. The stand also attracted considerable press interest, which the Isle of Man Tourism Communications team is now following up.

‘With 100 miles of stunning coastline, a large network of cycle trails and endless beautiful walks, we are fortunate to be able cater for lovers of the great outdoors in many different capacities. I am grateful for the co-operation from all our industry partners who participated in the Show and the stand’s success is a positive sign for the year ahead, demonstrating the Isle of Man’s continuing appeal as a visitor destination. We now have to seek to convert that interest into bookings which will benefit the economy of the Isle of Man.’

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Cav -- again. No April Fool.

Hey, he's headed for the record books.
Mark Cavendish won the second stage of the Three Days of De Panne in Belgium this afternoon, his seventh win of the season. The Columbia-Highroad star won the 219-kilometre stage from Zottegem to Oostduinkerke, beating Australian Robbie McEwen (Katusha) and Italian Francesco Chicchi of Liquigas in the sprint. The Three Days of de Panne finishes tomorrow with a road race stage in the morning and an individual time-trial in the afternoon. Cavendish is out of contention in the general classification as he finished in the peloton yesterday well behind the stage winner.

Cavendish now has a total of 35 wins in just over two years in the pro ranks. Chris Boardman tops the Cycling Weekly list of all-time British pro winners with 41 victories.

This picture was taken in Qatar, where, by coincidence, your Blogger is working for the next few days.