This is in part due to an Islamic terrorist organisation fighting hard and dirty to keep outside influences and Western-style education to a minimum, in part to the mistrust of white people and the free things being handed out by Western NGOs, and in part to widely held belief that the immunisation programme is actually a covert sterilisation programme of Muslim children. Fighting these is the Nigerian government, which sends immunisation teams and health workers out to every home to persuade parents of the benefits of vaccination. Bill Gates, too, is meeting with some success in the area, while polio victims talk to parents and show them the effects of the disease.
If it all sounds depressing in its familiar elements of ignorance, suspicion, and malign influence, Adepitan’s upbeat film, peopled by a cast of cheerful optimists and hopeful activists, adds a degree of cheer. But it’s still a grim watch – with a particularly grim ending.
Huckle The Barber Holborn
Seasoned hair dude Chris Ward opened his first Huckle barber shop on Old Street in 2012, and this second outpost has been seeing to Bloomsbury’s beards and barnets since 2015. The clean and simple aesthetic carries through to the service. No fussy grooming, vaguely invasive massage or ear-flaming tricks here – ‘our gimmick is: no gimmicks,’ my barber Marshal said. Which sounded slick, but turned out to be bang on. Once settled in a big, comfy barber’s chair, hair-washed and hot-towelled, I got the best cut I’ve had in ages. Marshal took a few minutes to work out what was going on upstairs before getting stuck in, recommended a few products but never went the full sales pitch, and provided great chat without the awkward. The soundtrack was on point (there’s a ‘Band of the Month’ blackboard – this month: Future Islands) and the coffee was very decent. For after-work appointments they’ve also got craft ale on tap and a selection of whiskies. At £45 for a wash and trim and £22 for a clipper cut, this isn’t a budget option. But if that’s in your price range and you're after a top cut without the fake-Edwardian faff, Huckle’s the business.
Venue says: “No gimmicks, independent male grooming of the highest quality with no pretence. Two shops to choose from: Shoreditch and Holborn.”