Arts Diary: Will Marriott

Ah, the life of a poet.

John Siddique, the poet who has strong ties with the Ilkley Literature Festival, often leading poetry walks around the town during the festival, has been working on his latest collection.

He sent this little missive out to his fans yesterday: "I hope this newsletter finds you very well and thriving. Well, it is a big big day – I have just sent my next book off to my publisher, and am sitting here with a lovely sense of completeness, which should last all of an hour or so, then it will be back on with writing the next thing. The new book will be out in 2011."

All we can really add is well done, John.

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Visitors to the ladies and gents at a Huddersfield bar are finding themselves surrounded by works of art.

Artist Jenny Parkin has transformed the toilets at Sleepers Bar with huge images of figurines half-submerged in jelly and custard.

Jenny, 35, of Slaithwaite, papered the cubicles with her photographs to create the works, called Best Selves.

Jenny said: "I believe in bringing art to the people, taking it out of the galleries and into everyday life – and there's nothing more every day than a toilet cubicle!

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"Some people have told me they were a bit hesitant to enter the cubicles because it felt like stepping into a ghost train. Others just love the bright colours and think it's all really pretty."

We're not sticking the boot in, really, just providing a public service here, when we inform you that Mark Watson's gig at Sheffield Hall has been moved.

Comedian Watson was due to be performing in the Irwin Mitchell Oval Hall in October, but the promoter has asked that the gig

be switched to the much smaller Memorial Hall at the same


Like we say, we actually really like Watson – you should try see him when he comes to Sheffield, he has a really likeable stage presence – but perhaps it was a little ambitious to try to fill the Mitchell Oval Hall.

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The likes of Jimmy Carr and Billy Connolly are a safe bet for such a venue. We'd suggest to Watson that he's more of a Memorial Hall act just at the minute – in the nicest possible way.

One little final thing – we love it when we're right.

We said that Alan Ayckbourn's play, My Wonderful Day, which premiered in Scarborough last year, was brilliant.

Delighted, then, to learn this week that it has been nominated for two awards at the New York Annual Drama Desk Awards.

Good luck to Ayesha Antoine, up for Outstanding Actress, and Sir Alan, up for Outstanding Play, on May 23.