On The Agenda: Save the Postcard campaign; Chocolate Week; Couture in the 21st Century; John Lennon; National Poetry Day; Shoot Nations

Black culture celebrated in west London; ukulele culture celebrated in West Sussex
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The Independent Culture

Visual arts

Before social networks, text messaging and emails, if you wanted to say it snappily, you sent a postcard – they may have taken longer then the length of your holiday to arrive, but there was something charming about receiving those clichéd pictures and condensed travelogues. So step up British Airways and its Save the Postcard campaign, which has employed a planeload of celebrities – including Gruffalo illustrator Axel Scheffler, fashion designer Manolo Blahnik and artist Tracey Emin – to design postcards to be auctioned for BA's Flying Start children's charity. Wish you were there? Bids are accepted online until 1 November. bahighlife.com

Adam Jacques


Thought you'd had chocolate in all its forms? This year's Chocolate Week will make you think again with a series of cocoa-centric special menus in restaurants across the UK. In London, check out French eatery Clos Maggiore's six-course tasting menu, featuring white chocolate with scallop tartare, while Russell's of Broadway, Worcestershire, offers beetroot, barley and dark-chocolate risotto as part of its three-course chocolate menu, and Blackfriars, Newcastle, pairs duck breast with bitter dark chocolate. From tomorrow, chocolate-week.co.uk



There's a whole host of brilliant fashion books out at the moment, and many are well worth buying for yourself rather than for someone else's coffee table. Look out for the latest offering from Harrods Publishing and Rankin, Couture in the 21st Century - which focuses on the craftsmanship of modern design, featuring work from Giorgio Armani and Paul Smith, as well as newer designers such as Erdem and Hannah Marshall. Out 14 October, £40, available nationwide

Harriet Walker


From Backbeat to Nowhere Boy, the life of John Lennon has long proved a popular topic for film-makers. But there have been fewer memorable stage adaptations of the life of the Liverpudlian legend, which is why the return (in time for the 70th anniversary of Lennon's birth) of the early 1980s production Lennon, by writer-director Bob Eaton is so welcome. The reworked script promises plenty of the wit, songs and wisdom Lennon gave the world, though not even the marketing people would dare to suggest that the play will be bigger than Jesus. Royal Court Liverpool, from Friday, royalcourtliverpool.co.uk

Salik Zia


Amid the celebrations around National Poetry Day, significant fanfare should go to the launch of a new poetry prize for any single poem by an adult or child. The Firebird Prizes are free to enter, after paying a nominal £4 to post your poem on to the website below. Prizes will be awarded at next May's Hay Festival by judges including Louis de Bernières and Joanne Harris. Potential award-winning poets have until 21 March 2011 for the muse to call. firebirdpoetry.com

Katy Guest


Shoot Nations is a photography competition with a difference; all of the entrants are between 11 and 25 years old and the theme each year reflects an issue facing the yoof of today. The result is a series of playful, searing and striking compositions on the subject of city living. The winning entries – from the dazzling 'Electric City Ghost' by Serbian youngster Lazar Bogdanovic, to Britain's Emily Rycroft and her rear-view shot of teens in their low-slung clobber – are on display at London's Old Truman Brewery today only. shootnations.org