VIDEO: Jack the Ripper - ripping it up at the Dargle

Evidence has been found that suggests that the character known as Jack the Ripper once resided in the Dargle in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa. He is known to have frequented Singletons bar, which is now located in the hotel called Tanglewood Country House. The Ripper also never paid for his drinks. Check out this very professionally made mini-docy from Witnessonline.

Jack the Ripper at the Dargle
[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cgR6_4wX5nA[/youtube]

DID Jack the Ripper once stand drinks at the bar of the Tanglewood Country House in the Dargle? Well, if he did, he didn’t pay for them.

The hotel that is now called Tanglewood Country House was originally a house built by Alfred Singleton in 1864. It was then rebuilt in 1885 by his son, Gilbert Singleton.

Some accounts have the Fannin family involved with the hotel. Certainly it was Thomas Fannin who settled in the area in 1847, and coming across a stream that reminded him of the Dargle stream in his native Ireland, named his farm after it. In time this became the name for the entire valley.

In 1888, a familiar face at the bar of Singleton’s Hotel was a Mr Demming who had leased nearby Portmore House. He gained a reputation for ordering rounds of drinks and then forgetting to pay. Being a likeable chap this foible was overlooked and a bar tab opened on his behalf.

One day Demming (a.k.a. Jack) invited everyone to a lavish tennis party at Portmore with catering provided by the hotel. When the bill was sent the following day it was discovered Demming had skipped along with all his belongings. Bill and bar tab remained unpaid. And so the tale of the thrifty English rogue entered local folklore.

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VIDEO: Audio-slideshow of what Pietermaritzburg has to offer

AS a build up to 2010, the Witness multimedia team (i.e. the Webmaster and I) sort to produce a series of videos showcasing what Pietermaritzburg has to offer foreign visitors. They also aimed to highlight the Harry Gwala stadium, which was to be a training ground for the Fifa 2010 World Cup.

Needless to say I found it very difficult to motivate myself to produce the following as it was a voluntary, unpaid project. But, I'm glad to say that it's finally done and I hope you enjoy it.

Proudly Pietermaritzburg video

The video has been removed due to copywrite issues. Mango Groove's agents/music corp. were upset that 25 seconds of their (credited) Pennywhistle track was used in the promotional, non-profit video of Pietermaritzburg. They're asking for R36000 in penalties. Let this be a warning to all fellow video-producers

Proudly Pietermaritzburg featuring the tunes of Mafikizolo and Mango Groove. Showcasing Pietermaritzburg history, buildings, famous people and Royal visits, Pmb art & culture, memorial statues, sport and film in Maritzburg.

Related video: Proudly South African (a must see)

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SEXPO WEEKEND: What Women Really Want

I humbly apologise for the lack of thought-provoking content here lately. It’s a tough time to be working in the media industry – generally. It’s almost bordering slavery. There’s one woman here who is setting the record by working for 63 consecutive days with two day breaks every three weeks. That’s Monday to Sunday for 21 days then a weekend break, then another full three weeks before her next weekend etc. Eish.

So I thought I would simply share another video that I made last year. It’s called What Women Really Want, which is a sexpo that takes place in South Africa every year. It’s not quite on the same level as Sexpo South Africa, but rather a smaller scale event aimed at girls who just wanna have fun. Enjoy!

What women really want
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8keDVMclVrA]

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OUTDOOR SPORT: The aQuella Mudman Challenge

IF you’re the outdoorsy-sportsy-fun-loving type and live in the greater Pietermaritzburg area or somewhere close by, there’s a great event taking place this weekend at the very aesthetically pleasing Albert Falls dam.

It’s called the aQuella Mudman, which is a triathlon type event for the whole family. It consists of a cycle, a swim and a run, and is a bundle of fun in the sun for everyone. Ages range from the newly born to the nearly deseased and is a great way to relax or spend some quality time with friends and/or family.

If you're keen to compete you can sign up on the day (or on one of the three days) and know that all proceeds go toward a worthy, educational cause. Check out their website for more info and don’t forget to pack the 24+ sun-block.

Below is a video of last year’s aQuella Mudman challenge to get an idea of what it’s all about.

PS: I apologise profusely for the appalling quality of this video. It was one of the very first videos I ever made and therefore not very good. I like to think that’s its gotten better since then... Anyway it’s really just to give you a visual idea of what this ‘Mudman’ thing is all about. Okay? Okay. Good. Enjoy.

The aQuella Mudman Challenge
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Q215XnUG2I]
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CULTURAL HERITAGE PARADE: Celebrating our cultural differences

AS a build-up to Heritage Month to be held in Durban in September, Pietermaritzburg hosted a cultural heritage parade. The aim was to identify various cultural youth groups in the area and bring together the diverse cultures of our country. It is hoped that this pilot project will become an annual event that Pietermaritzburg will host in 2010.

KZN Cultural Heritage parade: Celebrating our cultural heritage
[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g-q1lbztukc]

In all honesty, the event was a flop. They were expecting 3000 plus people to pitch up, yet the only life that could be seen consisted of a handful of school kids, the marchers and a couple of tumbleweeds.

It was held on a Saturday afternoon, the organisers were an hour and half behind schedule and there were several big sport matches  running at the same time on television. It took a lot of effort just to drag myself there.

But, the intenions are good and I hope the project has better success next year.

Until next time,
Happy viewing!

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