“I grew up in poverty and was bullied at school”
Nocturin ‘Noc’ Lacey-Clarke, 35, is a Conservative councillor in Blandford. He is not your average tory councillor. He is different. And he is making a difference in the town.
Raised by a highly creative single mum (now a lead maths advisor for primary schools, but who as a young punk in London used to help Boy George and Adam Ant with their make-up), Noc says his upbringing was loving, but there was poverty. ‘People used to donate second hand clothes and toys to us,’ he says.
Raised in Tolpuddle, he was bullied at school. ‘I didn’t fit in,’ he explains, ‘I had Asperger’s Syndrome and was OCD. I could read, but writing was a challenge. It still is. And I didn’t like sport. My real friends were my mum’s university friends, not people my own age’.
Skilled at sciences he studied maths and psychology at Bournemouth & Poole College.
From drifter to politics
After college, Noc admits he became a drifter with no fixed ambition until, living in Blandford, he became disenchanted with certain decisions taken by some local councillors.
‘They said that if I thought I could do better, why don’t I stand for election. So I did in 2018. I won by three votes.’
Noc stood again at the last election, winning around 1,500 votes. His nearest competitor received around 750.
Keenly interested in helping people struggling with mental issues, Noc’s charity ‘New Opportunities for Community Support (NOCS)’ was made official three years ago, and today around 100 people of all ages receive help weekly from his premises in Blandford Forum.
‘We help people through the medium of gaming. We listen to their stories.’
NOCS is part funded by the shop, as well as The National Lottery and Children in Need.
Noc lives in Blandford with his wife, Charlotte. My eight music choices: ordered chronologically according to when and how they affected my life:
Talking Heads – Once In A Lifetime
My mother introduced me at an early age to this US indie band and I fell in love with the absurdity of the lyrics, the artwork on the records and the amazing use of language. I’ve always enjoyed the idiosyncrasies of the English language.
Crash Test Dummies – God Shuffled his Feet
A whole album of what appears at first glance to be insightful quotes and parables but in reality led me to question a lot of ideas I had always taken for granted. How does a duck know which direction south is? And was that a parable or a very subtle joke I heard at church?
Korn – Follow The Leader
For a young teenager that was struggling with being bullied, not fitting in, and the general angst of being a teenager, this album put into words what I was feeling and gave me an outlet that was exciting and physical.
Joy Division – Unknown Pleasure
This is for those times in all our lives when we struggle with mental health – something that has played a huge part in my life. When the world seems broken and you just want to swim in oblivion for a while or curl up in a foetal ball in the corner of a room, what better music to do it to?
System of a Down – System of a Down
You can’t keep a good man
down for long. The band that truly made me fall in love with live concerts, with an energy I had never experienced before. System of a Down captured geo- political views and had an urge to change the world which led me through college where I learnt who I was, what was important to me, and where my place was in the world
The Eels – Beautiful Freak
Reaching my late teens and early twenties, I had calmed down, and so did my taste
in music. Still obsessed with lyrics, The Eels merged the lines between depressive downbeat music and subtle optimism which really appealed to my love of everything paradoxical. To me, it reflects life’s natural juxtapositioning.
My Beloved Monster is a song from this album (later used in the Shrek movie sadly..) that summed up my relationship with my partner, Charlotte, of now 15 years.
We chose it as a reading at our wedding and so will forever hold a special place in my heart.
Lana Del Rey – Born to Die
By my late twenties and early thirties, having seen many different sides to the world, and experiencing the accompanying highs and lows, I really found my passion which was helping people.
This led to the creation of my community-based shop, charity and lastly election.
Lana Del Rey is a mixture of hopeless love songs with darker undertones and the need to ask for help when we are at those low points. It resonated with both Charlotte and I as it points out the pain in the world but carries hope and dreams that can be attained if we work together.
Phil Spector – A Christmas Gift For You
The one album that has truly been a part of my entire life. As a child every year at Christmas my mother would take this record out and play it as we decorated the house and had our first treats of the season.
Still to this day I kiss the same Father Christmas stocking
and hang it on the window sill with the sounds of this record playing. I truly could not feel the Christmas spirit without it. Even on a desert island it would bring back all the warmth and memories of a full life filled with luck.
And if the waves were to wash all your records away but you had time to save just one, which would it be?
Joy Division’s Unknown Pleasure.
The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien. It was one of the very first books I read independently. I knew the main character was Bilbo Baggins and wanted to find out about him
as my middle name is Bilbo – I needed to know why!
It turns out my mother not only has a great taste in literature but also knew I was born to live an adventurous life!
Bilbo was always trepidatious about adventure and liked a structured, ordered life, but when push came to shove his bravery shone through – and he helped save the whole of Middle Earth.
Not a bad role model to aspire to!
My luxury item
Definitely my Lego Star Wars Death Star kit. This will provide me with hours of entertainment building it. I can fulfill part of my OCD nature organising the blocks and best of all, relive the greatest moments of the Star Wars saga.