Review of the year 2017: November

PUBLISHED: 12:30 31 December 2017

Sir Anthony Hopkins pictured filming scenes from a new adaptation of Shakespeare's King Lear in Stevenage. Picture James Acraman

Sir Anthony Hopkins pictured filming scenes from a new adaptation of Shakespeare's King Lear in Stevenage. Picture James Acraman

Archant

We were starstruck in November when Sir Anthony Hopkins paid a visit to Stevenage town centre to film a brand new BBC adaptation of Shakespeare’s King Lear.

WARNING: Embargoed for publication until: 10/02/2015 - Programme Name: EastEnders - TX: 19/02/2015 - Episode: 5019 (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: Abi makes a shocking revelation to Max. Abi Branning (LORNA FITZGERALD), Max Branning (JAKE WOOD) - (C) BBC - Photographer: Kieron McCarronWARNING: Embargoed for publication until: 10/02/2015 - Programme Name: EastEnders - TX: 19/02/2015 - Episode: 5019 (No. n/a) - Picture Shows: Abi makes a shocking revelation to Max. Abi Branning (LORNA FITZGERALD), Max Branning (JAKE WOOD) - (C) BBC - Photographer: Kieron McCarron

He was spotted dressed as a homeless person by shoppers and staff in the town.

While on the job, he still took time to speak to fans and even went inside the Limited Edition Comix store to sign copies of the 700th anniversary edition of the Thor comic.

The BBC film set in the fictional present will premiere on BBC Two in 2018, with some shots filmed at Hatfield House.

November also saw BBC drama of a different kind, as one chancer from Stevenage allegedly tried to ruin Christmas for EastEnders fans by stealing scripts filled with spoilers for the festive episode and sell them to the Daily Mail.

Long-serving NSPCC volunteer Norma Alcock, from Great Wymondley, with her MBE. Picture: NSPCCLong-serving NSPCC volunteer Norma Alcock, from Great Wymondley, with her MBE. Picture: NSPCC

Claiming to work at the BBC’s Elstree studios in Borehamwood, the 24-year-old from Stevenage was asking for £4,000 from the national newspaper for the scripts.

According to the BBC, the matter had been “resolved” after the Mail reported him to the British public service broadcaster.

Celebrations also took place in November for Norma Alcock as she received her MBE for services to vulnerable children after 40 years of volunteers work with the NSPCC.

Chief executive Peter Wanless and Childline founder Dame Esther Rantzen joined Norma and civic dignitaries at The Priory Barn in Little Wymondley to celebrate her achievement alongside the branch’s 125th anniversary.

Norma said at the time: “My friends have supported me with everything I’ve done since I started with a fundraising ball – the MBE is as much for them as for me. If they hadn’t supported me then I wouldn’t have it.”

She told the Comet that there was a great need for new volunteers in the North and East Herts Branch, and that anyone interest in helping was more than welcome to get in touch.

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