• Bleat all about it! Shaun the sheep and Aardman’s feats of clay

Bleat all about it! Shaun the sheep and Aardman’s feats of clay

Issue 1139

Bleat all about it! Shaun the sheep and Aardman’s feats of clay

In this issue…Shaun The Sheep is an animal of good taste – as our cover created by the good people at Aardman with Shaun enjoying The Big Issue proves. Inside, Steven MacKenzie talks to Aardman creative forces Nick Park and and Peter Lord about the company’s place in British public consciousness – and the problems of bringing a silent clay sheep to the big screen.

Our Letter To My Younger Self is with Celia Imrie. A familiar presence on British TV and cinema drama (and Acorn Antiques) she has much to say about the power of laughter. She also wades into the posh V not posh Blunt/Bryant hoo-ha. Bryant doesn’t emerge unscathed.

John Bird this week considers Polly Toynbee’s new book and her analysis of the state we’re in. Time for answers, not ongoing horror stories and complaints he says.

Our featured vendor this week is Mike Holland, who sells in Newport in Wales. He has come to sell the magazine only recently, as he became homeless after struggling with making rent. He is now getting back on an even keel.

Damian Barr has another great column, looking back at his own past when he and his mum hid from the Provvie man, reaching forward to Greece and debt.

In our My Peccadillo spot Mark Strong talks about being an obsessive Gooner – and tells how he and Colin Firth lost control at a couple of matches.

David Oyelowo, stunning everyone everywhere with his portrayal of Martin Luther King (except Oscar voters), tells Adrian Lobb why he supports Benedict Cumberbatch in the “coloured” row. We also push for some secrets about his close pal Oprah Winfrey.

There is much else besides, of course – including Simon Harvey from British Sign explaining how to learn the rudiments of sign language in our Pause section; in Economics we look at energy prices and what TTIP is all about. And, of course, there is always Spot The Ball…