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Nailsworth & Proud: Tim Hughes – playing the blues, Dustin Hoffman, Forest Green and yoghurt covered nuts


Tim Hughes has lived in Nailsworth for the last 14 years. He is a Professor of Applied Marketing at the University of the West of England, but now only works two days a week. This has given him more time to pursue his interests, particularly in playing and performing blues music. Tim has been on the Nailsworth Festival Committee for many years and does the publicity.

This year’s Festival has been put back until 20th-27th August because of Covid. The Festival will feature a range of acts and activities including poet and comedian Elvis McGonagall; blues performer Michael Roach; novelist Kate Riordan; singer/pianist Helen Porter and Stroud writer-performer Philip Douch. Tim will also be featured this year with his presentation and performance “120 years of the blues”.

When are you at your happiest? 

These days probably performing music or hearing others perform. This has been severely constrained during the pandemic, but Zoom sessions have saved the day somewhat. There is a virtual Minchinhampton Folk Club; a virtual George at Newmarket; a virtual Frocester George and others. One advantage has been that this has allowed musicians to listen to and connect with others both across the UK and internationally. 

What has been your biggest disappointment?  

Difficult to say. Professionally I can think of an example. I was working in marketing for a company, who will remain nameless. I was responsible for using an advertising agency to produce and new TV ad (costing a lot of money) that I’d signed off at the concept stage. However, the actual ad was nothing like I expected from the concept boards. The trouble is by that stage there is little you can do about it. All part of the learning process I suppose. 

What is your guiltiest pleasure? 

Yoghurt covered nuts.

Who is the most famous person on your phone? 

Perhaps, Michael Roach. He is headlining Nailsworth Festival and so I am in contact with him.

What is your favourite smell? 

Newly laid tarmac on roads. There has been plenty of this with all the road works going on in our area recently!

Who would play you in a film about your life? 

Dustin Hoffman, because he really gets into every character he plays.

What do you like most about living in Nailsworth? 

Where do you start? The countryside; the friendly community; Forest Green Rovers; folk clubs and open mics; Nailsworth Festival; Minchinhampton Old Course.

What would you improve about Nailsworth? 

More opportunities for live music. There is no shortage of talent in the area. The opening of the Three Storeys Art Centre in Nailsworth is a very positive step and we will be using this as one of the venues for this year’s Nailsworth Festival.

What is your ideal weekend? 

Forest Green Rovers win promotion on Saturday afternoon, music on Saturday night, recover on Sunday.

What is on your bucket list? 

Visit the Mississippi Delta.

What is the most important lesson life has taught you?

Don’t get stuck in a rut. Shake things up and give yourself new challenges every few years.

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