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This cheeky Geeza proves that every dog has his days… in 2018

Who’s been making the news around your way this week?

15 December, 2017 — By Emily Finch

Geeza shows off his 2018 calendar

GEEZA, the one-eyed Staffie cross, has a new calendar in which every page is filled with his photo. The pooch belonging to Martin Rutherford is a familiar face around Islington Green near where he lives and he even has a friendly dog companion who jumps on his back and hitches a ride around the green space.

Martin with his four-legged friend

“He thinks every dog is his best friend,” said Martin. Martin adopted Geeza from Battersea Dog’s Home around seven years ago and they have become inseparable since. Geeza had to have his right eye removed last year after the vet discovered a tumour but he’s now fully on the mend and enjoying his life to the fullest by guarding the washing line out back. “I don’t know why he does it but he sits there for hours when the washing is out,” said Martin.

Geeza’s calendar for 2018 features the dog posing in green shades and flying through the air on a speedboat. It was apparently made by the dog himself: “He sat at the computer for hours and made it!,” said Martin. A likely story!

Sadly, the calendar is only available to Martin’s friends but if you see Geeza on the street be sure to say hello.

Straws help make pollution history

The biodegradable straws on the Union Chapel bar

ONE of the borough’s most active community groups gathered for a Christmas party on Wednesday night at the historic Union Chapel bar. Members of the Islington Archaeology and History Society met in the hall above the main chapel. “We have a number of lectures that I think people will find very interesting. We have planned a joint talk with the Islington Society about brutalist architecture,” said chairman Andy Gardner.

Andy Gardner

Andy said he was also looking forward to a talk about the history of allotments in Arvon Road, which is planned in May – an event Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn may be interested in attending. The party also featured nibbles and copious amounts of wine.

On top of the bar stood a pleasant surprise in the form of glasses full of biodegradable straws.
Bar worker Roberta, who has worked at the Union Chapel for six years, said she was behind the new straws because she cares for the environment. Those who have watched the final episode of the BBC show Blue Planet 2 will now the destructive nature of plastic. The programme showed the bellies of albatross chicks filled with plastic and dolphins weighed down by our rubbish. “It makes me so mad when people are holding to plastic straws in their hands,” said Roberta. “It may seem a small step but changing small habits can hopefully prevent our environment’s rapid destruction.”
• To find out more about the History society visit

School’s winter fair in a class of its own

Festive fun at Ambler Primary School

It’s not many sleeps till Christmas and the parents and children at Ambler Primary School celebrated with a winter fair last week. There was a gingerbread house-making competition, a winter wonderland and Santa Claus – everything a child and parent could wish for in the festive season.

An edible gingerbread world

“The shed was unrecognisable, magically changed into a Gingerbread Grotto, to which families flocked to meet Santa Claus and his Elves, after he had rung the bell to open the fair,” said Nadine Mellor from the Friends of Ambler group, a parent organisation that supports the school.

Baking prize winner Jade Nicholas

She added: “Each class took on running a stall: you could Catch an Elf, decorate ornaments, wrap secret presents, buy reindeer food, and throw snowballs at a Snowman Shy. There was also a Lucky Dip, popcorn, mulled wine for the parents, plus mystery Jam-bler Jars (Ambler Jam Jars!) full of goodies on sale, which sold out super quickly, and children could have their faces painted as reindeer or snowflakes.”

Separate from the fun and festive season, there was also some terrible news at the school this week after a parent passed away. Janet Brade was a popular parent at the school where her child is in Year Six. Her friends are fundraising to raise money for her funeral. To contribute go to:


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