Interview: My chat with Depeche Mode’s Fletch in the Echo newspaper
What is your earliest memory?
It’s in the place I grew up in – Basildon – and it’s me and my sister. We had a barrow load of sand and we tipped it accidently over someone’s lawn and the man was shouting at me. It’s hazy but That’s my earliest memory.
Where is your favourite place in Essex, and why?
I like Leigh-on-Sea. I’ve got lots of friends who like there now and I like all the pubs and restaurants, especially those by the front on old Leigh.
Are the Essex roots still quite strong?
My sister lives in Basildon. My niece lives in Basildon. My mum lives in Billericay. So yes I guess they are. Continue reading
They have fine manners, plentiful Royal connections and count the Queen among their fans. So how will the boys from Blake crown that I ask?
During the Olympic and Diamond Jubilee year, which saw Britain really spread its wings, it’s no surprise that classical boyband Blake has become one of our best-loved exports. After all, their fans include the Queen and the Duchess of Cambridge – one of the quartet even went to university with the former Catherine Middleton. In fact, Blake – Humphrey Berney, Ollie Baines, Stephen Bowman and Jules Knight – has performed at Buckingham Palace ‘quite a few times’, delighting in ‘wandering down corridors and going where you’re not supposed to’.
I meet the foursome at Ollie Baines’s west London apartment. As the other chaps arrive (Stephen Bowman on his motorbike), our host brings out a tray loaded with cake, cups, saucers and a fine china teapot. Yes, these men have manners – and they’re not afraid to use them. In fact, they believe they wouldn’t be where they are today without knowing how to behave. Continue reading