Thursday, 31 October 2013

The Queen and Prince Philip come to Sussex

by Jian Farhoumand.

This photograph by Richard Allan. All others by Jian Farhoumand

Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, Defender of the Faith, and her husband Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, today visited East Sussex.

The Royal Couple attended several events and locations across Newhaven, Lewes and Brighton in what was the Queen's first visit to Sussex in six years.

First stop, at 10.30am, was West Quay Fisheries, Newhaven, where the royals had a chance to sample the plaice.

And the fish.

Ian Bickerstaff, owner of the Fisheries, said: "We’ve been here for nearly 40 years and we’re a family business so it’s nice to be recognised."

He added that his crew of fishermen had felt proud to be picked to receive a royal visit and had gone out on a second trawl especially for today.

The Royal Couple had flown in by helicopter before being chauffered to the Fisheries in a sleek, black Bentley.

Crowds of hundreds cheered through the drizzle and reign (ahem - ed.) as Ma'am stepped from the towncar dressed in a fetching purple-pink ensemble and hat.

Prince Philip was dapper by her side in a navy blue single-breasted suit and tie.

The Royal Party then proceeded inside to meet the staff and tour the facilities, before moving onto YHA South Downs, Southease, at 11.30am to meet enthusiastic Duke of Edinburgh Award students.

Here the Royal Couple unveiled a plaque commemorating the opening of the new facility.

Next stop, at 12.30, was Harvey's Brewery on Cliffe High Street, Lewes, the oldest independent brewery in Sussex.

The crowd outside whooped with delight as we all caught a glimpse of her Majesty as she exited her Bentley, flanked by security, and entered the brewery with Prince Philip.

The high-pitched squeals and cheers of the crowd were highly reminiscent of those made by ecstatic throngs of fourteen-year-old-girls at a One Direction concert. In this case, however, the crowds were mainly composed of Sussex OAPs with purple rinse dyes.

Still, the enthusiasm was evident as police held security lines and helicopters buzzed overhead.

Inside the brewery, our Queen and her Prince were treated to a tour of the bottling plant followed by, at 1pm, a hearty lunch of posh nosh and local ale.

An inside sauce (source - ed.) leeked (stop!) the menu which included such delicacies as cured salmon with cucumber radish; butternut timbale with cider buerre blanc and baby carrots; Middle Farm apple assiette and apple fool with caramelised apple tuile.

Next the Royal Couple were ushered across to The Keep in Falmer, Brighton, arriving only two minutes behind schedule at 2.12pm. The Royal Tour was indeed progressing like clockwork, albeit perhaps a Timex rather than Rolex.

Her Majesty officially opened The Keep, a new local archive centre run by the University of Sussex that will eventually house over six miles of archives dating back some 900 years.

The Queen met staff and volunteers and unveiled a plaque to commemorate the opening and her visit.

All in all, it was an exciting day marked by much merriment and enthusiasm. Radio stations and local news programmes were agog with excitement and crowds of pedestrians were testament to the Royal Pull. It was probably the most excitement our fair county has seen since the heady days of the Great Storm of '13.

One local smartalec quipped: "It might be the first time the Queen has come to Brighton in six years but it seems like a queen comes here every six seconds, if you ask me."

Brace yourself for an ice age at the Brighton Museum

by Katy Marriot.          

                                     Photographs by Adele Norris

The sound of the wind whistles from the speaker system and the display cabinets are bursting with intrigue.
“Imagine icebergs off the coast of Brighton and seas so high that the Pavilion Gardens  are underwater”, a sign reads at the entrance to the exhibition, tickling the imagination and inviting the curious to prepare for a delicious hit of knowledge.
The sci-curious should, however, freeze in their tracks at this point and scamper back to the comfort of specialist journals and BBC documentaries.
The vaguely intrigued should follow suit.
The geological history of planet Earth is explosive, dramatic and jaw-droppingly fascinating but sadly the exhibition at Brighton Museum and Art Gallery seems deflated of the ‘Brian Cox/David Attenborough’ spark on which swathes of the science-hungry public have become accustomed to feasting.
For the geologically minded the exhibition could be patched together to craft some sense but those wishing to join the elite club of those-in-the-know are left scratching at the ice like a polar bear yearning for the fish below.
While the artefacts displayed in the cabinets are indeed captivating, their geological context is severely lacking.

Stromatalites are displayed in the same case as a horseshoe crab, a stuffed beaver and Neolithic agricultural tools with the only tangible link between the objects being that they were discovered in Sussex. It is a charming angle for the exhibition to focus on Sussex but unfortunately this is the only context and any sense of a time-scale between the objects and the events described is manifested as a jumbled timeline, seemingly added as an afterthought at the end of the show.
The introduction to the gallery cutely describes that there have been five major ice ages throughout Earth’s history but this is the last to be seen of a reference to anything other than: “The ice age.”
A free exhibition is doubtless a good thing but the Ice Age exhibition must not be the sole reason for a visit to this museum. Come for the delights of the interior design exhibition downstairs and stay for the coffee, but a word of caution to those that come bated with the anticipation of a wholesome learning experience: the Natural History Museum in London is free, too.
The exhibition ‘Chilled To The Bone, Ice Age Sussex’ runs until  January 14th 2014, open Tuesday-Sunday, 10:00 until 17:00.

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Oh Mummy! Egyptology comes to the Brighton Museum

by Thomas Davies.

As an adventurous child with an overblown imagination growing up in dreary south Wales, one of my favourite movies was always The Mummy.
Disregarding flesh-eating scarab beetles and a burning crush on Rachel Weisz, the tangible connection to a rich history, an overtly religious lifestyle and the country’s inspiring landscape contributed to the romantic and mystical appeal of ancient Egypt.
These elements have been transported from north African origins to now stand beautifully displayed at a Brighton Museum and Art Gallery exhibition in the Pavilion Gardens, thanks to the work of Brighton-born Egyptologist Francis Llewellyn Griffith (1862-1934). 

A diverse array of jars, jewellery and gold fragments illustrate the domestic and the decadent in the time of the Pharaohs and provide points of interest for young and old alike, while zany examples of animal mummification are also on show to delight and repulse in equal measure.
The nonsensical nature of Egyptian hieroglyphics may hold particular resonance with people bamboozled by the complexities of shorthand, but these are made clear by the wide-ranging information boards scattered throughout the exhibition.
The intricacies of Egyptian life, from daily chores to religion and the afterlife, are presented through a number of detailed displays that incorporate genuine relics to wow grown-ups and interactive aspects simultaneously to provide fun and learning for children.
Video clips, audio guides and flip-boards explain everything from how people of the age made pottery and tools to why they were embalmed with their sandals in an engaging way.

Plus, every kid loves a Mummy, right?
The Ancient Egypt gallery is ongoing at Brighton Museum and information can be found on the website.

Monday, 21 October 2013

Subversive exhibitionism comes to Brighton

by George Ward.

The recently opened Subversive Design exhibition at Brighton Museum and Art Gallery helpfully defines the word subversive as you enter as “Having tendency to overturn," and, "to turn upside down.”

Most of the works attempt to challenge your preconceptions about everyday items and create a discussion about some of society’s problems. Unfortunately, many of them were so unsubtle that very little discussion was required.

The best exhibits were simply the most beautiful ones that made me feel uplifted. The daisies in the chamber of a glass gun and replacing the pin in a glass grenade turned these violent objects into “emblems of hope and peace” as artist Layne Rowe intended.

Other notable pieces were those that suggested another use for things that we normally treat as rubbish (such as Rebecca H Jocelyn’s Crumpled can jug made of precious metals, see picture). It shows the propensity for humans to throw away things of value.

I was extremely irritated by the wallpaper named Sharp Descent/Death from Above depicting sharp objects that appear to be falling but with their sharp ends pointing upwards. I wandered if maybe it was the wrong way round like the two Rothkos at the Tate Modern in London.

The gallery is holding various events related to the exhibition including An Insight into Subversive Design where four of the designers will talk about their pieces (Saturday 30th November 2013, 1-4.30pm, tickets £20, £15 concessions).

The exhibition is open 10am-5pm Tue-Sun until 9th March 2014 and is £6 for adults, £4 for concessions, free for children (aged 5-15) and £3 for Brighton and Hove residents.

For more information, visit the the gallery's site.

A random walk through the Brighton Museum

by Tom Irving.

The lack of an entrance fee at Brighton Museum & Art Gallery proves decent value for money as its array of pic’n’mix exhibitions seem eager to appease rather than captivate.

The large amount of displays the museum offers is confusing and off-putting as the exhibition seems intent on trying to keep the attention of its audience with minor glimpses at corners of history and very flattering, albeit fleeting, portraits of Brighton and Hove.

One display’s offerings are of a more puzzling nature: items posing as 5,000 year old Saxon artefacts found at Whitehawk include a tape measure wrapped in electrical tape, a spirit level and a bag of screws (pictured).

Photographs by Charlotte Schroeter

‘Jelly tots and a hot water bottle’ is a great answer to the museum’s question of what to take with you to the afterlife. These answers are written on a note and placed upon a board by visitors providing the highlight to an otherwise lacklustre trip.

The museum itself gives the faint impression of disinterest as all of the exhibitions suffer from a case of ‘blink and you’ll miss it’.

As soon as one exhibition begins, it gains momentum and interest and is then rudely interrupted by the next.

The museum offers bite-size showings of history, one moment you can be learning the evolution of man through the ice age and then be thrust into the recent evolution of Brighton’s gay scene.

Doing this, however, makes the random, quick-fire displays seem confusing, apathetic and unsatisfying, which is unfortunately a constant thought when visiting Brighton Museum & Art Gallery.

For more information, visit Brighton Museum & Art Gallery

Friday, 11 October 2013

Back to the drawing board: BHASVIC's controversial building plans rejected by B&H council

by Jian Farhoumand.

Controversial plans for a new teaching block at Brighton, Hove and Sussex Sixth Form College (BHASVIC) on Dyke Road, Hove, have been rejected.

Brighton and Hove City Council met in the Council Chamber at Hove Town Hall on Wednesday 9th October and – after vociferous debate – rejected the college’s proposed design for being "out of character" with local amenity.

BHASVIC had applied to construct a stand-alone, three-storey building on the site of its current car park between the Main Building and College House. Both of the latter buildings are listed.

The proposed new building, which would have appeared from Dyke Road to be composed mainly of steel, glass and cladding – in direct contrast to its listed red-brick neighbours – would have taken the place of 29 parking spaces.

Seven new parking spaces were proposed to be created elsewhere on the site, resulting in a total loss of 22.

BHASVIC is a popular college and the first in the country to be awarded Grade 1 Outstanding status by OFSTED.

The college has over 2,200 students, and the new building would have created 12 new classrooms whilst seating 288 students.

However, as the proposed building was deemed “out of character” with its neighbours and surroundings, councillors voted seven to four against it.

Councillors explicitly cited opposition to the plan’s colour scheme – including garish green and blue cladding – and obtrusive exterior design for being too over-bearing.

Furthermore, several councillors cited objections made by neighbours, local residents, the Brighton Society and even the council’s own Heritage team.

Councillor Lynda Hyde reiterated: “It is totally and utterly obtrusive in terms of design, material and palette. Neighbours, the Brighton Society and the Heritage team object. And I object.”

Neighbours on Dyke Road feared the proposed building’s “negative impact” would also include impending “loss of light”.

The Heritage team had reported that the building would be set too far forward and would be more prominent than its listed neighbours.

Councillor Hyde reminded those present that any new development in Brighton and Hove must enhance the character of the local amenity.

She added that, as plans for a bungalow extension had recently been rejected for similar reasons, this new proposal should also be rejected.

Councillor Carol Theobald concurred: “I think the design is terrible, too high and too visible and would break the sense of the street scene.”

Councillor Mike Jones added: “I’m really disappointed by the choice of colours. I do not understand why this palette of colours has been deemed acceptable.”

One councillor suggested that if the cladding was instead composed of red brick, then at least it would be in character with the listed buildings either side as well as the neighbours opposite.

Another agreed, saying of the current proposal: “This does not respect the neighbourhood character and design. The whole community are against it. It is not popular.” She asked why BHASVIC couldn’t create a structure similar in spirit to the new construction at Brighton College which has successfully stayed in character with surrounding buildings.

Councillor Alan Robins said: “I see no beneficial reason for the coloured cladding." He added: "I agree with what most have said. To me this design of cladding looks like it’s permanently covered in scaffolding.”

Councillors voiced their regret and emphasized that, although rejecting the proposal, they were not opposed to the idea of a new construction at BHASVIC, but simply wanted a more fitting design.

BHASVIC’s principal, Chris Thomson, said after the vote: "Obviously I'm very disappointed.” He added: “But I’m very much hoping we can find a way of meeting the planners' requirements so that we can meet the demand for the outstanding provision we make for young people."

When asked if BHASVIC and its architects could design an exterior that would be more in keeping with its listed neighbours, whilst still maintaining the same interior provision for classrooms and students, Principal Thomson said: "I'm sure our architects will be very responsive."

                                Brighton College's more sympathetic new build design, Kemp Town

Councillor Leo Littman called the current proposal, “an opportunity missed for a terrific addition to the BHASVIC site”.

Councillor Jones said: “I hope that the design team can come back with a design for a good, modern building that reflects the colour palette of the buildings around it.”

BHASVIC has been awarded the maximum allowable government funding for the new building.

When asked if this funding was tied specifically to the current, proposed design, Principal Thomson said: "There’s no direct connection between the government funding and the design. The government do believe in the project because they gave us the maximum £1.5 million available. We approach them with a general plan, they give us the approval, then we go ahead and procure the building, including its design."

Principal Thomson concluded: "We - that is the college along with the architects - have another meeting with the planners today and hope to make progress from there."

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

The problem with polyamory

by Jian Farhoumand.

Now, before all the angsty, free-lovin’ hippies out there get their collective, unwashed knickers in a twist, I’m not knocking those who choose to practise (gulp…) polyamory. No. My gripe is simply with the word itself: Polyamory. It’s nonsensical. Plus thoroughly exasperating.

English words of this kind are traditionally rooted in either Ancient Greek or Latin. Either/or. Not both. For example, the practice of having one lover or spouse is usually referred to in English as 'monogamy'. That’s because ‘monos’ means ‘one’ in Greek, and ‘gamos’ means ‘union’. So a monogamous person is someone who has only one partner.

Concurrently, you can refer to having multiple lovers or spouses as being 'polygamous' because ‘poly’ means ‘many’ in Greek. (See other words composed of two Greek stem words like polygon, polytechnic, polystyrene, etc.). Polyamory, however, is just rubbish. Polyamory is a poorly-constructed non-word that doesn’t know where it comes from. A bastard child of the lexically inept.

Why? Because the ‘poly’ part is Greek but the ‘amory’ part is Latin (Latin!) for ‘love’. This nonchalant juxtaposition of two stem words from two totally different ancient tongues is a huuuuuge no-no in linguistic terminology. It’s not just disrespectful, it’s dumb. It doesn’t make you sound cutting–edge, informed or hip. No. On the contrary, it makes you sound like a lazy-minded, dim-witted nonce.

If you’re truly desperate to use the -amory part (which is itself a duff, cringe-worthy, technically incorrect stem word anyway) then, for the love of God, just say that you’re into 'multi-amorousness' (still an ugly, clumsy word), or describe yourself as 'multi-amorous'. Why? Because ‘multi’ is Latin for ‘many’ (think multiple, multi-faceted, multifarious, etc.), and therefore links correctly with the second Latin stem word ‘amory’.

But 'polygamous' (or even 'polyphilic' if you want to be super-specific), would be what you’re really trying (and failing) to say, as here the composition is solely (and properly) of two Greek stem words.

Polyamory, however? HELL NO. Its creepy, irksome creation is tantamount to mind-numbing, blood-boiling, God-awful, molten crud being poured down the throat of history. Its existence is a slap in the face of the evolution of language and a disgusting, puss-filled boil on its arse.

Now, right here, some clever-dick reader/internet troll might pipe up with, “But television comprises both a Greek word and Latin word, and has been widely accepted into common usage!”

True, but there’s a reason for that: the ‘tele’ part means ‘far’ in Greek, and the ‘vision’ part comes from the Latin verb video, meaning ‘I see’. The reason the inventors of the television had to come up with this word, I imagine, is because the Greek word for seeing, ‘skopos’ (which can be translated directly as 'sight', 'aim', 'purpose' or 'watchman'), was already being used on an earlier invention, the ‘telescope’ – a device that helped us see far.

So telescope was taken. Polygamy, however, already exists for talking about people who have many lovers or spouses, and does the job just fine. There could even be an argument for introducing a new word, polyphilia, into the English language, too, if you really want to separate the people who love many unions from the people who love just having multiple random partners but not proper unions.

Polyamory, however, is just wrong. Don’t use it and don’t make excuses for it. Saying, “I’m polyamorous,” truly reveals the paucity of its user’s mind. It reeks of ignorance. It’s almost exactly the kind of puerile prattle you’d expect from a seventeen-year-old’s first ever A-Level Sociology essay: "Polyamory [sic] in the online dateing [sic] world."

Polyamory – it’s a bit like a Fisher Price ‘My First Big Word’, if such a thing existed. A word invented in universities by pseudo-intellectuals who’ve probably never had multiple lovers throughout their entire lives, let alone several at once. Utter tripe.

According to my spellcheck, polyamory doesn't even exist. Right now it’s underscored with an angry red squiggle in this Word file as I write it. Even Bill Gates wants nothing to do with it.

If you really want to say you fancy a shag with randoms (or repeats), just say you’re into 'sleeping around', 'having fun', 'keeping it casual', etc. Or, just say you’re into polygamy. That’s the proper word – the big boy’s/big girl’s word. Or even polyphilia, like I explained.

But whatever you do, don’t use naff, made-up words to sound clever that actually make you sound stupid. Otherwise you'll just look like someone who recently scored a C in their Sociology A-Level, enrolled at some jumped-up ex-poly (no pun intended) to do a pointless degree in Gender Studies with Political Thought and who now likes to throw around dumb, mixed-up words like ‘polyamory’ in the union bar as well as on your OkCupid profile that nobody reads anyway.

Why? Because NOBODY CARES. You’re not sleeping with a single hottie, let alone many. Get over yourself.

Friday, 4 October 2013

Supermodels, move over: Rick Owens wants real women

by Nayha Tandon.

It is safe to say that Rick Owens' 2014 Spring/Summer collection has been the one catwalk that's had chins wagging non-stop at this year’s Paris Fashion Week.

Owens’ catwalk evoked both racial and body diversity, stepping away from the size-zeroed Caras and Kates of the fashion world.
The minority became the majority with the use of black female step dancers taking over the catwalk with their military-style dancing and frowns fixed on their faces.

Owens’ recruited the step teams from the United States especially for his show at Paris Fashion Week.
It seems like Owens’ catwalk caused quite a stir, presenting a powerful and refreshing collection of fashion.
The models showed off Owens’ rock ‘n’ roll style collection through the use of layers and asymmetry, with a simple colour palette of greys, blacks and whites.

Wednesday, 2 October 2013

Football: Champions League round-up‏

by Thomas Davies.

It was a night of disappointment for Manchester's representatives in Europe on Wednesday as both United and City fell short in the Champions League.
Following a sobering Premier League defeat to Aston Villa on the weekend, Manchester City yet again stuttered on the big stage as Bayern Munich continued their continental dominance, prevailing 3-1 at the Etihad Stadium.

Goals from Franck Ribery, Thomas Muller and Arjen Robben gave Pep Guardiola's men a stranglehold on the fixture, while City 'keeper Joe Hart once more failed to impress with simple errors costing his side dear. 

Substitute Alvaro Negredo netted a late consolation for the hosts, while Jerome Boateng's dismissal meant Bayern finished a man down, but by then the result had long been decided.

After the worrying home reverse against West Brom on Saturday, David Moyes' shaky start as Old Trafford supremo continued as his charges squandered a lead to draw 1-1 away at Shakhtar Donetsk. The Ukrainians enjoyed the majority of possession and play at the imposing Donbass Arena - egged on by their boisterous support - but were stunned by Danny Welbeck's neat finish after 18 minutes.

With time elapsing and United looking good to cling on for a vital away victory, Brazilian forward Taison pounced on the ball and hammered a fierce shot into the roof of the net to salvage a point and send the home fans into raptures.

There was no such profligacy from other European heavyweights as Real Madrid and PSG eased to comfortable wins. 

Enjoying a slender one-goal advantage at the break, Real let loose in the second half at the Bernabeu and braces from Cristiano Ronaldo and Angel Di Maria saw them cruise to a 4-0 romp over Copenhagen.

A Zlatan Ibrahimovic double set PSG on the way to a 3-0 victory at Parc des Princes, with visitors Benfica offering endeavour but no end product in Paris.

A tap-in and header from the Swede were sandwiched by another close-range finish for new defensive recruit Marquinhos and although the Portuguese toiled nothing was getting past Salvatore Sirigu in the home goal.

Olympiakos found their night equally comfortable in Belgium as a Kostas Mitroglou hat-trick set them on course for a crucial 3-0 away win at Anderlecht; but Juventus were held at home by Galatasaray.

After Arturo Vidal's penalty had cancelled out Didier Drogba's opener, the Bianconeri will feel frustrated that they could only muster a draw in a match they dominated as Fabio Quagliarella's late goal was scratched out by an even later effort by Umut Bulut.

As Munich marched on in Manchester, there was more German joy with Jens Hegeler's exquisite free kick snatching a 2-1 win for Bayer Leverkusen over Real Sociedad in stoppage time.

In the day's early kick-off a five-goal thriller went the way of CSKA Moscow - the Russians overcoming Vitoria Plzen 3-2 in St Petersburg. Despite the visitors taking the lead, efforts from Zoran Tosic, Keisuke Honda and a Radim Reznik own goal put paid to the Czech champions.

On Tuesday, there were big wins for Arsenal and Chelsea, Barcelona bested Celtic and Atletico came back to sink Porto in Portugal.

Elsewhere, Dortmund mullered Marseille, Milan were held by Ajax, Schalke scraped past Basel while Zenit drew blanks with Austria Vienna.

Is there life on Mars? There will be soon...

by Katy Marriott.

A multi-planetary human society will leap from the realm of Star Wars fantasy into reality when a one-way Mars mission, scheduled for 2023, leaves with a team of four carefully-chosen volunteers on board. The company, Mars One, is orchestrating the mission and applications to be among the first Martians were opened to everyone on Earth, so long as the minimum age requirement of 18 could be met. The responses have blasted in from over 140 countries during the five-month-long submission period.

Since its launch on the 22nd of April 2013, 202,568 people of varying age, race and background signed up for the mission of no return and are currently waiting to be called to the second round of selection, due to begin in 2014. Their fates will be sealed based on a self-recorded video, of no more than a minute, and a written profile, of a hundred words or so, in which the prospective Martians have described why they should be chosen for Round Two of the selection process. The applications that have been made public are available for review here.

Some have focused on their excellent board-game skills, others on their musical talent and a few have highlighted their superior ability to withstand never-ending periods of boredom without grabbing for the noose. Either way it’s certainly safe to say that Mars One has an eclectic pool of Terrestrials to choose from.

America holds the highest proportion of online applications with 48,616 of the total and Great Britain saw 12,154 offers, which equates to nearly twice the population of central Hove, according to the 2001 Census. A staggering 1,190 of the hopefuls who made their applications public are under twenty-five and that begs the question: which applicants are keen to stand up for scientific progress to further our species for millennia, and which are merely desperate to say goodbye to planet Earth and all it means for them?  Twenty-five seems a remarkably young age to advocate oneself for a lifetime of near solitude on a hostile planet which, at maximum, is 250 million miles away from Earth.

A selection committee will decide the worth of the applicants for Round Two, with a medical check and interview for the successful. The committee will then decide who passes through to Round Three.

The procedure screams of a selection process similar to that of the dystopian 2005 film The Island as applicants will be split into regional teams and face Big Brother-style challenges, which will be broadcast on TV and the internet. This Orwellian concept is rather jarring and the similarity between it and popular 1980s predictions of the future sit uneasily with me. I often wonder, as new discoveries, concepts and inventions launch into our lives, if we will always slip naturally into our own self-fulfilling prophecies. Is life on Mars being perceived as the archetypal progression into a better, more fulfilling life?

The public will watch applicants compete in challenges designed to test the astronauts’ suitability to live on Mars. One winner will be selected from each region to continue to the next stage: Round Four.

The authoritarian, dystopian imagery boldly continues through to Round Four when the Big Brother-style competition continues. The selection challenges will be broadcast globally as contestants are pit against each other to prove their ability to survive harsh conditions and work together to overcome difficult challenges. The entire world will vote on contestants’ worthiness to leave this mortal coil and spend the rest of their days on Mars.

While prospective astronauts may no longer apply for the 2013 selection process, Mars One will open its proverbial doors for subsequent selection programmes in order to continue recruiting follow-up crews for our new colony on this celestial neighbour.

Mars One is a not-for-profit, private foundation and as such it does not rely on tax-payer funding, unlike government bodies such as NASA and the UK Space Agency. While the shameless public display of the ‘competition’ element to the mission seems crass, the fact is that without governmental funding the Mars One company will seek to drum up funds where it can. Public broadcast is certainly a leading business plan: Channel 5 paid over £200million for Big Brother which, at the time of purchase, was 11 years old. One can only imagine the broadcasting worth of a new reality TV show where the top prize is not merely cash but a one-way ticket to a lonely life on Mars, which will doubtless also be showcased to the world for public scrutiny and potentially a succession of Mars-based, audience-influenced challenges - Orwell that ends well.

The Mars One website has a facility for public donation to the mission of creating a permanent human settlement on Mars and, while the £6billion estimated total expenditure remains unattained, the number of outside sponsors is growing continually.
The training programme sees successful applicants spending seven years in intense preparation for their new life, during which time un-manned craft will have landed and distributed their living pods, ready to be assembled.