Editor’s preview of our Spring 2017 edition, now out – Simon Jarrett

There is plenty, I hope, to catch your interest and stir up discussion in our Spring issue.

Our eye-catching cover shows a group of young actors getting ready to perform in Impact Theatre’s  recent production of Shakespeare’s Midsummer Night’s Dream. Inside, our full-colour photo feature shows the stunning visual beauty of the performance. Thanks to Impact for letting us show off these amazing images.

On the subject of performance, huge congratulations to the amazing Steven Brandon, who has just won best actor in the National Film Awards for his performance in My Feral Heart, a moving film about a young man with Down’s syndrome whose life is turned upside down after the death of his mother. He shrugged off competition from Daniel Radcliffe, Michael Fassbender and Eddie Redmayne to win the award. Our review of My Feral Heart is in this issue.

Back in a less beautiful world we ask some serious questions.

Are people with learning disabilities losing the right to an identity? No photographs except for official ones because of confidentiality, no right to tell your own story because of worries about ‘capacity’ and ‘protection’. We have analysis from across the UK of this unsettling phenomenon.

What about hate crime? And are you aware of ‘mate-crime’? We report on a timely campaign by Dimensions, ‘I’m with Sam’, which seeks to tackle the disturbing trend in physical and verbal violence as well as financial and emotional exploitation, against people with learning disabilities.

And what about a place to live? Recent years have seen a positive rise in the numbers of people who have their own tenancies enabling them to lead independent lives. Is this now at risk from planned government reforms to supported housing? Matthew Eddisford of Care Housing Association reports for us.

On top of this we have a revealing article about  grief and learning disability by David O Driscoll, and an interview with our outgoing editor (and founder) Elinor Harbridge, who reflects on her thirty years with the magazine. Plus our theatre, television, film and book reviews, conference reports, benefits updates, legal news and much more.


(and by the way if you’re not a subscriber, we’re a bargain! Just £30 a year for an individual subscription, even less for students, unwaged and other concessions. Just hit the subscribe button on our home page.)