A letter from lockdown

We have some very exciting news about space travel this week. World renowned Astronaut Tim Peake has been broadcasting across multiple media outlets announcing the upcoming launch of the world’s first commercial spacecraft, SpaceX Crew Dragon. Although NASA and SpaceX were forced to abort the planned mission on Wednesday due to poor weather conditions, there will be a second attempt to disembark this Saturday. And if you want to learn more about the event, which will mark the first crewed launch from US soil in nearly a decade as well as SpaceX’s plans to revolutionise the future of space exploration, you can catch up with Tim on The One Show here, BBC Radio 4 here and BBC News here.

We’re also excited to share the official trailer for Jessica Swale’s debut feature as writer and director of period drama, Summerland, starring Gemma Arterton and Gugu Mbatha-Raw. Despite the vast majority of US cinema closures, there is hope for a theatrical release on July 31st. “Fundamentally it’s a movie with a great big heart, and in these months of uncertainty and fear, I think stories with optimism woven into their seams have never been more necessary,” said Swale of the project.

This week we have been celebrating some new book releases. Even though holiday plans have been put on hold, you can still escape to the coast of sunny Devon by reading Veronica Henry’s new novel. In A Wedding at the Beach Hut, Robyn and Jake are planning their dream wedding at the family beach hut, but Robyn is preoccupied with thoughts of the mother who gave her up for adoption. This is the perfect novel for right now – a mini-break in a book. Alysia Vasey’s The Yorkshire Forager takes us to another beautiful part of England exploring how Alysia’s love of foraging with her family gradually evolved into one of the UK’s most successful foraging businesses, supplying some of the greatest chefs in the world and the best restaurants in the country. John Nichol’s Lancaster is also out this week following the storming success of his Sunday Times bestselling book Spitfire. John tells the story of the Lancaster bomber, it’s heroic crews and the men and women who kept her airborne during the country’s greatest hour of need. And last but not least, following his Sunday Times bestseller Secret Agent, Tom Bradby’s latest intelligent and compulsive thriller, Double Agent is published this week by Transworld. It’s a sequel that pushes senior MI6 agent Kate Henderson to her limits as she tries to unmask the Russian spy holding the nation’s highest office.

In other up-and-coming book news Kate Mosse and Lauren Child will both be contributing to Dear NHS: 100 Stories to Say Thank You which will be published on 9th July. Edited and curated by Adam Kay, the book features personal stories of our national health service from 100 household names. All profits from the book will go to NHS Charities Together. Chris Riddell will also be releasing Poems to Save the World With in September, a collection of classic and modern poems to galvanise, uplift and inspire you through these interesting times we live in.

It has also been a fantastic week for award nominations. Both Escape to the Chateau and Escape To The Chateau DIY have been shortlisted for the TV Choice Awards 2020. Dick and Angel’s Escape to the Chateau is in the running for ‘Best Factual’ with their DIY spin off up for ‘Best Daytime Show’. And if Dick and Angel’s heart-warming adventure into the restoration of a charming yet dilapidated 19th-century French Chateau has brought pleasure to your TV viewing, you can help them to win the public vote here. BBC Two’s smash-hit show, Interior Design Masters, starring the fabulous Michelle Ogundehin as ‘series judge’, has also been nominated for ‘Best Talent Show’. Follow the link here if you have enjoyed our interior design guru’s expertise on your TV screens. In addition, Steths, Drugs & Rock ‘n’ Roll hosted by the brilliant Sara Kayat and her colleagues from ITV’s This Morning, Dr Ranj, Dr Zoe and Dr Tijon, has been nominated for the Listeners’ Choice Award in The British Podcast Awards. And if you have listened, loved and laughed along with the doctors, you can vote for them to win here. The winners will be announced on the 11th July.

Foodie extraordinaire, Leyla Kazim of The Cutlery Chronicles, has partnered with legendary Swiss cutlery manufacturers Victorniox this week to share a simple and tasty lunch idea for your weekend. Head over to Victorinox’s Instagram account for step-by-step instructions in preparing some mouth-watering Turkish style lamb mince wraps, a 30-minute recipe inspired by Leyla’s Turkish roots. And for anyone looking to expand their culinary prowess, Migrateful are hosting cookery classes for individuals all over the world. Migrateful provides cookery classes led by refugees and migrant chefs from across the globe, to celebrate and empower all those on their journeys to social integration, promoting contact and cultural exchange with wider society. You pay what you can afford to do a class from your own kitchen, a delightful digital initiative to bring individuals together from all over the world.

Until next time…

With our best wishes,

The Soho Agency Team