News - Extra - 6 June 2007

This article is from 2007.

Fringe benefits

Jess Barrow 1963-2007

This year's Edinburgh Fringe Festival is back, bigger and better than ever before. Shining highlights from the 2007 programme include a one-off performance from Extras star Ricky Gervais, who will be performing his Fame! live show at Edinburgh Castle on Monday 26 August. Fresh from Glastonbury and T in the Park, (un)musical phenomenon du jour the Silent Disco will be setting up camp at McEwan Hall from Friday 10-Sunday 19 August. Politics and satire come together for Tony Blair: The Musical and the Tommy Sheridan Chat Show, both of which run throughout August. Japanese drumming group Lion Spirit (pictured), which combines powerful Taiko drum performances with dance, traditional costumes and musical instruments, will be making its UK debut (various dates throughout August.) Meanwhile, this year's T on the Fringe line-up includes Foo Fighters (Tuesday 21 August), Kaiser Chiefs (Fri 24) and Razorlight (Sun 25).

Tickets go on sale Mon 11 Jun.

• Shelter Scotland takes its new 'It's time to get a move in' campaign to three major festivals this summer. The housing and homelessness charity will be asking music lovers to sign up to support the call for 30,000 affordable rented homes over the next three years in between acts at The Outsider, T in the Park and Wickerman festivals. Affordable housing is a key issue for hundreds of thousands of people across Scotland, not least those struggling to get onto the property ladder. Meanwhile, house waiting lists are continuing to grow and households who have found themselves homeless continue to languish in temporary accommodation. For further information on the campaign please see

• Beanscene, the coffee and music house which originated in Glasgow, is inviting customers to a first birthday party for its Haymarket branch at 2 Grosvenor Street in Edinburgh on Saturday 9 June. Celebrations will include a range of activities for kids and adults alike, including a charity raffle, with all proceeds going towards Maggie's Cancer Caring Centres.

• Due to popular demand, 750 extra camping tickets have been released for The Outsider, which takes place in Rochiemurchus Forest, within the Cairngorms National Park, from Friday 22-Sun 24 June. The Outsider is part of the celebrations for Highland 2007 and brings together bands and musicians such as Crowded House and KT Tunstall, comedy acts, debates and workshops and a number of outdoor activities including 'Britain's Most Beautiful Run'. The festival aims to raise awareness of sustainable development and environmental issues. For further information and to book tickets please see or

• Further afield, the Small Island Film Festival (Feis Film nan Eileanan Beaga) takes place from Friday 15-Sunday 17 June on the Isle of Eriskay on the Outer Hebrides. With its island location and community-based programme, the festival presents a number of Gaidlig/Gaeilige films, discussions and events celebrating over 70 years of film representation of the small island communities of Scotland and Ireland. For booking and programme information, please see or email

• Budding musicians and entrepreneurs can gain an insight into how to improve their earnings at the industry's Note for Note Roadshow, which pitches up in Inverness for goNorth on Friday 8 June. Subjects up for discussion by the panel of guest speakers, include how to collect royalties, what a music publisher does and how to set up a label. The event takes place at the Romada Inverness Hotel, 33 Church Street, Inverness, from 10.30am-2pm. To register email

Jess Barrow was always so full of life that it is hard to believe she is not with us any more. She campaigned fearlessly and passionately for causes large and small, but always with a cheerful enthusiasm that would disarm even the most obdurate opponent. At Edinburgh College of Art she was elected president of the Student Union, and while battling the authorities and organising Revels, she also volunteered her support during the Miners' Strike. It was at this point that she met Gordon Russell. They went off travelling together before marrying and setting up home in Edinburgh.

Jess was a major part of the team that established The List back in the late 80s, bringing her wit, charm and determination to all the many problems involved. Later, while looking after young sons James and Callum and studying housing, she fought successfully to save and reopen Portobello Baths. She went on to play a major role campaigning for the elderly through Age Concern Scotland and formulating an important new strategy for an ageing population for the Scottish Executive.

Jess supported, encouraged, inspired, entertained and, where appropriate, challenged everyone she met, whether cabinet ministers, officials, policemen, colleagues or her much loved family and many friends. She will undoubtedly be much missed.

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