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5 Days £259.00 pp

Departing: Monday 15th October 2012 Your Holiday Includes: 4 nights ensuite accommodation at the Auckland Hotel in Morecambe, situated on the sea front promenade within easy reach of the towns shops and amenities. Includes Dinner, Bed & Breakfast Visit to the Wensleydale Creamery in Hawes Visit to Blackpool for a tour of the famous illuminations Excursion to Bowness on Windermere in the Lake District

5 Days £248.00 pp



5 Days £279.00 pp

Departing: Monday 5th November 2012 Your Holiday Includes: 4 nights ensuite accommodation at the popular Rosemundy House Hotel. Dinner, Bed & Breakfast Hotel festive entertainment Half day visit to Truro– capital of Cornwall Scenic tour to Penzance—England's most westerly point for a lunch stop before continuing to the town of St Ives. Excursion to Falmouth where you can visit it's museum, wander its narrow streets or browse the shops

5 Days £219.00 pp

Departing: Monday 3rd December 2012 Your Holiday Includes: 4 nights ensuite accommodation at the popular Congress Hotel Dinner, Bed & Breakfast A free day to explore Eastbourne Half day excursion to the town of Battle famous for its Abbey and site of the Battle of Hastings Visit to the charming seaside town of Worthing with its popular seafront. Perhaps visit the market which is on when we visit

4 Days £197.00 pp

Departing: Friday 16th November 2012 Your Holiday Includes: 3 nights ensuite accommodation at the popular family run Hotel De La Mer Dinner, Bed and Breakfast Hotel festive entertainment Excursion to the city of Exeter for some free time to explore the city. Perhaps visits its Cathedral Visit to the popular fishing port of Brixham ands then on to Torquay to enjoy some free time

5 Days £220.00 pp

Departing: Monday 10th December 2012 Your Holiday Includes: 4 nights ensuite accommodation at the Auckland Hotel situated on the seafront promenade. Dinner, Bed & Breakfast Hotel festive entertainment Scenic drive to Keswick in the Lake District Visit to Carnforth station—famous for its connections with the film “Brief Encounter". After we continue on to the county town of Lancaster for some free time to explore Visit to the market town of Skipton


5 Days £319.00 pp

Departing: Monday 29th October2012 Your Holiday Includes: 4 nights ensuite accommodation at the popular Headland Hotel with stunning views overlooking Torbay. Includes Dinner, Bed & Breakfast Excursion to Dartmouth with time to explore its river front and 18th Century houses before a stop at Totnes Visit to the picturesque seaside town of Dawlish Journey across the picturesque moors of Dartmoor National Park to reach the maritime city of Plymouth for some free time




Departing: Thursday 13th December2012 Your Holiday Includes: 4 nights ensuite accommodation at the three star Carat Hotel in Monschau - an historical old town set in the impressive scenery of the Venn region Dinner, Bed & Continental Breakfast A day of leisure in Monschau to explore Visit to the old spa town of Aachan, where you can visit the Christmas market set around the Cathedral and town hall Excursion to Valkenburg, over the border in Holland. Here we find the biggest and oldest underground Christmas market in Europe. You can also visit the shops and cafe's in the town itself

Departing: Sunday 23rd December 2012 Your Holiday Includes: 4 nights ensuite accommodation at the Esplanade Hotel in Llandudno situated on the promenade overlooking the sea Dinner, Bed & Breakfast Hotel Festive entertainment throughout our stay A drive along the coast for a short visit to the Isle of Anglesey Short excursion to Betws-y-coed

5 Days £479.00 pp

Prices are based on two people sharing a room. Please contact us for our complete coach holiday brochure or for more details of any of the holidays shown.


14-15 22-23


inside... TRAVEL & LEISURE 10-11 Malta... travel to a touch of England in the Med 12

Beavis... a complete holiday service


Russell Grant... the comeback kid

14-15 The Hairy Bikers... take a scientific approach to food

FOOD & DRINK 18-19 The Nation’s Favourite French Chef... two recipes from Jean-Christophe Novelli


Cataract.. know the warning signs.

McGrath Media. Unit 6 | Moses Gate Workshops Gladys Street | Bolton | BL3 2QG. T: (01204) 796 494 | F: (01204) 791594 e:

Orchard Park, Twigworth A New Lifestyle for the over 50s Are you retiring, or looking to downsize yet do not wish to compromise on your high standard of living? A park home lifestyle could be your solution, 50 Plus finds out. A peaceful location with easy access to all local amenities.


ith beautiful views over the nearby surrounding hills, Orchard Park nestles just two miles from the hustle and bustle of the centre of Gloucester. An exclusive development with its own on site shop and not too far away from Tewkesbury Abbey and Gloucester Quays and the cathedral. Soon to be released is an exciting development of three brand new plots within this well established park, which boast apple trees and pear trees over laden with fresh fruit for easy picking. A typical new park home comes with two double bedrooms, fully fitted kitchen with integrated appliances. To the exterior with each home will be a driveway and garden, somewhere to relax and unwind during your post work leisure years. We would be very proud to show anyone around our current development and answer any questions about the park or the home options that can be chosen.


For further information telephone:

01793 722100

RUSSELL GRANT: THE COMEBACK KID When Russell Grant first danced into the hearts of the viewing millions on “Strictly Come Dancing” last year his stars might well have predicted great success and a comeback of cosmic proportions. For arguably Britain’s favourite astrologer may not have won the series – well, let’s face it, his dancing was more entertainment than excellence – but the live audiences and those at home loved him. And for Russell this TV appearance provided a passport back to fame. Born in Middlesex, Russell was brought up in a council house by his set designer father Frank and secretary mother Joan who both worked at Pinewood Studios. His parents separated when he was 11 and he moved in with his maternal grandmother but, in spite of the upheaval, Russell has always said he had a happy childhood. He worked as a Butlins’ Redcoat and trained as an actor, appearing in a variety of shows. While working in Blackpool, Russell met his partner Doug Beaumont and the two have been together for almost 40 years. Although Russell first came to prominence in 1978 after he held an astrological reading for the Queen Mother which led to him being dubbed “Astrologer Royal”, his theatre, TV and film career was surprisingly comprehensive and successful.


It spanned more than 30 musicals and comedies, including work as varied as touring with “The King and I” to TV’s “On The Buses”, “Please Sir!” and “The Fenn Street Gang”. He’s been in “Tom Brown’s Schooldays” in the West End and was an effective panto dame in shows all over the country. However, TV beckoned and it was Russell’s fascination with astrology and his exuberant personality that brought him before the nation, first on Yorkshire TV and then on Granada TV where he was a regular onscreen explaining the daily horoscopes. From there he moved to breakfast TV with BBC’s “Breakfast Time” and later to TV-am as resident astrologer on “Good Morning.” A broadcasting natural and popular presenter, this role soon broadened to presenting other shows including celebrity quiz “Star Choice”. He later had his own six-episode series “Russell Grant’s All Star Show.” He worked for Channel 5 just after it was launched and directed and starred in “Russell Grant’s Postcards”, a collection of more than 100 five-minute travelogues produced by his own company Russell Grant World Productions. Russell worked solidly on a number of TV projects, with his astrology skills ever present, and he wrote a number of popular newspaper columns and horoscopes in regional newspapers throughout the country as well as in various magazines. Like many TV personalities, however, his star waned for a while. In 2006, he took part in the fourth series of “Celebrity Fit Club” and lost over three stone, but he later suffered from depression and his weight rocketed, this time to 26 stone.

INTERVIEW He became something of a recluse at the 30-acre Snowdonia estate that he shares with Doug but, being Russell Grant and a trouper, determined that the show must go on, he began losing weight – around 10 stone in two and a half years by disco dancing each day for half an hour! In 2011, an online group called “Get Russell on Strictly” finally persuaded TV executives to have him as a contestant on the show. In September last year, he burst onto our screens with his lovely professional dancing partner Flavia Cacace. Surprisingly light on his feet and with genuine rhythm, Russell sported a number of colourful and outrageous costumes and certainly won the day with viewers. In fact, they kept him in the knock-out programme until late November – in spite of much criticism from the judges, in particular the often acerbic Craig Revel Horwood. The abiding memory of Russell from the series, however, is of him being shot from a cannon as part of one particularly fun number! This great revival by the “comeback kid” caught the attention of the famous musical writer and producer Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber. He invited Russell to return to the West End stage – and the Palladium Theatre where he’d last performed 34 years before – and take part in a three-month stint replacing Michael Crawford as the “Wizard of Oz” in a new production. “I was worried as I was due to have an operation on my knee,” commented Russell. “I’m 61 now. At this age you know your limitations. But you also sense your mortality. So there was a two-way thing going on. I was trying to talk myself out of it, thinking ‘Can’t I just go back to Wales?’”

Fortunately, Andrew Lloyd Webber and Russell’s close friend Lulu convinced him the part was right for him, and a highly successful run followed which enhanced and revived Russell’s theatrical reputation once more. The production also brought him under the dancing wing of choreographer and dance teacher Arlene Phillips – “She even had me dancing the Charleston”, said Russell. Following his memorable appearance in the hit musical, Russell has been brought in as a guest star for a new tour of the show “Grease”, taking the role of Teen Angel at various venues including Newcastle, Llandudno, Southseas, Wimbledon, Dartford and for a one-week run in Manchester in October. He’s back working with Arlene Phillips, whom Russell insists is his “dance sister.” “Arlene brought out the very best in me working on ‘The Wizard of Oz’,” he stated. “So when she said I was right for Teen Angel and, if I took the part, she’d create the choreography, how could I resist!” The sparkly suit and no doubt mesmerising performances are bound to leave the audience hopelessly devoted to Mr Grant’s special charms again. And it’s one more dancing role which he now loves, as he explained: “Teen Angel has a Strictly twist and shimmy which captures the joy of dance I’ve been lucky enough to have discovered.”

As for the future, who knows? Russell hasn’t set himself any special showbiz boundaries and his fans are never surprised – just happy to see their favourite star once more ascending.

Christmas Reader Offer

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Virgin Balloon Flights are offering readers 25% off magical sunrise balloon flights with their national weekday morning vouchers (usually £119 per person) for just £89pp including: • An unforgettable balloon flight of around an hour • 100+ locations across mainland Britain including Cheltenham Racecourse, Cirencester & Tewkesbury • Traditional Champagne toast (or soft drink) • Flight certificate endorsed by Sir Richard Branson • 12 months to book your flight & transport back to your launch site

You can also save 50% off Celebration Packages (RRP £279pp) at just £139pp including evening and weekend flights, 18 months to book, plus a Virgin Balloon Flights gift pack with cap, key ring, pen, pre-flight DVD, binoculars and an engraved Champagne flute.

Call 0844 844 8073 & quote ‘Cheltenham 50 Plus’ or visit before December 15

Terms & conditions Reader offer valid until December 15, 2012. Price is for one person including VAT at applicable rate and standard delivery and cannot be used with any other offer. Flying season is March to October. Passengers must be aged 7 or over and at least 4’6” tall. Passengers who are pregnant or have recently undergone major surgery are unable to fly. Virgin Balloon Flights reserves the right to withdraw the offers or amend these conditions at any time. Full conditions at


Domestic d e s a B d n Grou & s f o o lat R



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Although the Feed-in-Tariff for generating your own electricity has reduced to 16p per unit the overall cost of installing Solar Panels has come down by over 50%. The benefits are still dramatic and a clear winner for anyone wishing to safeguard against future electricity prices while generating themselves a predictable income stream over the next 20 years. The average age of a typical domestic solar-panel customer is 60 plus, which may not be so surprising when one considers this as one of the highest disposable income groups. With mortgages paid off any retirement savings are earning a pittance in ISAs and other traditional forms of investments. The advent of Solar PV and the Government Feed-inTariff scheme has offered a safe investment vehicle that now yields far more than can be currently earned elsewhere, as well as a way of making fuel savings and doing your bit for the environment. Of course the basic premise is that those looking for the benefits from generating their own electricity have capital to invest. The cost of installing SolarPV panels will vary according to the size of system but an optimum domestic size of 4kW (16 panels) will now cost around £6500; half of what it was a year ago. Investing in SolarPV should be considered a medium term investment as once on the roof the money is tied to the value of your property rather like buying a new kitchen or a conservatory. But unlike other home improvements SolarPV will earn you money from the outset; generating electricity and a tax free income day after day, year after year.

In the right conditions an installation can net savings and income of around £1000 per year, effectively paying off the initial cost in around six to seven years, which stacks up to a very attractive 15% return on investment. Even if your roof is not perfectly south facing or you only have a flat roof or an available roof on a garage or barn at the bottom of the garden then the sums still stack up. If a pension topup scheme seems less relevant then consider this as a holiday or Christmas fund. They come round every year and they don’t get any cheaper; how about £1000 tax free every year for the next 20 years to pay for them, while offsetting your carbon footprint? Invest now, generate and save .... Christmas is coming!

If you are currently faced with the prospect of finding care for yourself, a relative or a friend, you are probably feeling emotionally drained right now. The process of finding suitable care and sorting out the legislation, not to mention helping your loved one come to terms with the significant changes to their lifestyle, can be extremely hard. Add to this the emotive, and often confusing, financial situation and it is not surprising to learn that many people feel tired, stressed and worried at a time like this. Once you know that the person can no longer live independently, you need to adopt a level of pragmatism. Sometimes the only known option might not be the best solution. A move into a care home is a huge step; sometimes it will be the better choice for everyone concerned, but for others, staying at home and buying in care will present a more bespoke answer.   If a person’s capital and savings and/or income push them outside the means test thresholds they will generally be

responsible for the funding of their own care fees until such time as their money falls below the appropriate threshold. However, with careful planning it may be possible to structure their finances in such a way that care fees can be paid indefinitely, without worry about the future or what might happen if the money runs out. Most families wish to ensure that their relative can stay in the chosen care home for the rest of their lives as well as safeguarding as much of the existing capital as possible. There are dedicated tax efficient financial policies available, which are specially designed to cover all or part of the cost of a person’s care fees, and, whilst they are not a universal panacea, they can, in the right circumstances, provide an ideal solution.  

For further information about how these products can help you, or to request a copy of our free “Ultimate Care Fees Planning Handbook”, simply call Neil Gayler on 01242 538383 or email him on

Care Fees Planning advice; when and where you need it from your local specialist Neil Gayler If you are contemplating placing a relative or friend in a care home (or organising their care in their own home), you are probably feeling emotionally drained right now. The process of finding a suitable care provider and sorting through the legislation, not to mention helping them to fundamentally change and come to terms with the major changes to their lifestyle, can be extremely difficult. Add to this confusion, stress and guilt and it is not surprising that many people feel somewhat overwhelmed and worried at a time like this. There are many financial advisers in the country but only a handful in any one region with the specialist skills and knowledge to be able to guide you through the care fees planning maze SYMPONIA [Greek. adjective: compassion] Symponia has the answer — our adviser members are all suitably experienced and appropriately qualified. We are therefore able to provide a unique concept within the field of care fees planning which, in turn, gives you and your family truly independent financial advice at a time when you most need it .

Neil Gayler is your local Symponia member for Gloucestershire. For a confidential initial consultation (without any cost or obligation to you), call him on 01242 538 383


Graham Smith has a Twitter Life is just a tweet! Do you tweet? Twitter seems to have become all the rage but don’t some people make themselves look twits by what they say? Even David Cameron is tweeting, and for once it’s not about Nick Clegg. As I write he’s just popped up to announce that Prime Minister’s Question Time is about to start. A sure cue for everyone to switch off their computers and phones and hide in a darkened corner before this adult version of Children’s Playtime starts. Does the Queen tweet? Well not officially but someone assuming her name, @Queen_UK, and claiming to be Elizabeth Windsor, gives me many a chuckle with irreverent comments and quips at various member of the Royal Family and the government.

Waiting for a Princess! Joining a small crowd waiting to see the Princess Royal in Keighley I had to laugh at some of the comments as time ticked by and she did not emerge from the Civic Centre she was opening. “I suppose she’s had her dinner, I’m on the wrong side of mine,” growled one elderly lady. “Who does she think she is being so late, royalty?”, from one man. I was curious to see this much travelled, often criticised member of the Royal Family whose dog has a penchant for eating geese and who can be a bit nippy behind a steering wheel.

Her catchphrase is “gin o’clock” and he or she has an astonishing 646,553 followers and counting. The latest tweet,“ Camilla on the phone, worried that “the interweb has gone”. The DoE (Prince Philip) thinks she’s trying to find Ceefax”. Then there was this little gem, “Alvin and the Chipmunks (Mr Cameron and Co) are back from their Burma holiday. The poor Burmese still have no idea who they are”. Or “Bungle (Boris Johnson) on the phone. Not really sure what he’s saying, partly due to one having hung up”. She creases me! The “gin o’clock” bit comes in when our supposed monarch announces at 5pm each day that it’s home time and “gin o’clock”. And one of my favourites, “Just been out with the dogs. The DoE is trying to dry Linnet the corgi off with a hairdryer”. To me this is great humour and I am an avid follower. Others make me laugh for other reasons. They tweet before they’re out of bed and I even know the flavour of one southern lady’s toothpaste thanks to her being retweeted by one of my followers. Then there are the dodgy ones. I sat at my machine one morning and discovered I was being followed by three brothels in San Diego and a dispensing chemist for some very suspect stuff in India, duly deleted. Be very careful if you click any links to these kind of people or you will find your computer or mobile phone infected with something which spreads like mumps and ruins any social standing you ever had. Last word with the Queen after the budget, “Text from Nick Clegg: “I didn’t agree with the tax on fruit machines. People shouldn’t pay tax on their apples and bananas”.

Security was tight for the only royal to have been close to being kidnapped some years ago. On the centre door were two local security people who collectively must have weighed 50 stone but when Anne’s exit was signalled they were dwarfed by her own security men, and women, one of whom could have been seven feet tall with a tell-tale bulge under his immaculately tailored suit jacket. Then there she was, initially wearing that so serious look she is known for but she kindly broke into a half grin and her eyes lit up as a lady beside me made a light hearted comment about how long she had been inside before leaping nimbly into the back of a Range Rover. She certainly has the “royal” look and for a woman slightly older than me, in her early 60s, she is still youthful. “I’ve immensely enjoyed my trip to Yorkshire,” she said to us all. We enjoyed having you Ma’am, but next time could you save us a sandwich if we have to wait so long?


50 Plus Travel

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MALTA Travel to a touch of England in the Med

By Peter Lynch Journalist, rail and wildlife specialist, contributor to Great Train Journeys of the World and Silver Travel Advisor

Malta is a fabulous Mediterranean destination especially if you dislike the hassle of foreign languages. Everyone speaks good to perfect English yet Malta retains all the charm of the Mediterranean.

bureaucrats have forced the withdrawal of the famous orange vintage Leyland and Bedford buses.

The universality of English is down to Malta being part of the British Empire from 1814 until 1964 but strangely it was not one of the Empires conquests. In the Napoleonic era Malta was between a rock and a hard place - at risk of being invaded by the French and the Russians. It opted for the protection of the British Empire and subsequently played a crucial role in defeating Rommel’s Afrika Korps in North Africa during WWII.

The Upper Barrakka Gardens provide a must-see harbour and city view and the Grand Master’s palace and armoury is a must. Don’t be put off by the plain exterior of St John cathedral; it belies a fabulous Baroque interior and a famous painting by Caravaggio.

It’s a tiny place, significantly smaller than the Isle of Wight, with a familiar yet foreign ambience. They have the highest density of catholic priests outside the Vatican City, produce and explode more fireworks per head than anywhere else on earth and eat an unbelievable number of rabbits. Of course, they drive on the left and something I love is how it’s kept some of the classic images from my childhood – old red telephone boxes, red post boxes and blue lights outside police stations. Sadly EU


The World Heritage listed capital of Valletta is Europe’s first planned city, laid out in a grid system of streets and alleyways. The Knights of St John built it on a peninsula as a defence against the Turks during the sixteenth century.

Valletta’s real charm is its ambience, so it’s important to sit in an outdoor cafe and soak up the palpable sense of history rather than just rushing around the sites –the perfect excuse for loafing. But all this is just recent history; Malta’s prehistoric megalithic temples are older than Stonehenge or the Pyramids. It’s a dream destination for historians and reads like a textbook of western civilisation, probably with more human history packed into its122 sq miles than anywhere else on earth. There are 23 prehistoric sites dating back 6,000 years including the impressive megalithic temples of Taraxien and Hagar Qim but the subterranean

Valletta’s real charm is its ambience, so it’s important to sit in an outdoor cafe and soak up the palpable sense of history... on Malta en-route to Rome and his indelible legacy of Christianity is still evident in the islands 360 churches. The marks of Norman and Arab conflicts are everywhere on the island, culminating with the spectacular city of Valletta built by the Knights of St John in 1566. Malta’s history rolls on involving the Spanish Empire; Napoleon predictably turned up and of course the British. But its not history that makes Malta one of the UK’s favourite holiday destinations - it’s the glorious weather, the friendly people, the Mediterranean lifestyle and the convenience of English speakers. When Malta’s history, shopping and nightlife pall the 20-minute ferry across to Gozo is like moving to another country. It is Malta’s exclusive hideaway island with a pastoral ambience compared to Malta’s brasher tourist developments. Everything runs at a slower pace on Gozo.

hypogeum of Hal Saflieni is perhaps the most breathtaking. It is the only known underground prehistoric temple. Not much is known about these ancient temple builders or their mysterious parallel ‘cart tracts’ gouged into the limestone. They’ve been likened to a complex railway junction (Clapham Junction) because they criss-cross the landscape and some even disappear off the edge of the cliff - creating an endless source of myths and legends. Homer’s Odyssey tells of Ulysses being shipwrecked on the nearby island of Gozo where Calypso captivated him on his journey back from Troy to Ithaca in Greece. Then there are the Phoenicians from the Biblical cities of Tyre and Sidon who traded and settled Malta until ousted by the Roman’s. St Paul was also shipwrecked

The islands capital of Rabat was renamed Victoria in 1897 to commemorate the Queen’s Diamond jubilee but its still the beautiful quant town of alleyways, cafes and little shops it always was. The imposing walled citadel sheltered people from the marauding corsairs who plagued island communities throughout the Mediterranean. Gozo has its share of prehistoric monuments such as the Ggantija temple - supposedly built by giantesses and more mysterious ‘cart ruts’. The impressive Romanesque Basilica of Ta Pinu dominates the Gozitan skyline and has become a local shrine with a Lourdes-like status for miracle cures. Inside the walls are adorned with artificial limbs and other relics left by grateful pilgrims.

So don’t bother with a history book in Malta, just stroll around and let it all seep in, and between momentous historical events you’ll be able to find a perfect pasta and a decent pint of beer.

Silver Travel Advisor is a travel review, information and advice website exclusively for over 50’s, packed with articles, suggestions, tips and ideas. For free and independent travel advice as well as reviews about holidays, hotels, restaurants and days out, please visit or email It’s free to register as a member of Silver Travel Advisor, and you could win a fabulous holiday prize.






Caravan Show 2012 Friday 05 October 2012 Three Counties Showground

Italian Food Market, Tewkesbury 18 November Spring Gardens Car Park, Oldbury Road, Tewkesbury, GL20 5AB (near Cascades swimming pool and the Roses Theatre) The real Italian food market returns to Tewkesbury. 9am - 4pm. FREE

HAY WALKING & HAY WALKING FESTIVAL 11th - 15th October 2012 Hay Walking Festival Hub The Swan at Hay Hotel, Church Street, Hay-on-Wye HR3 5DQ. The Swan at Hay hotel is kindly offering to act as the Festival Hub, providing tea, coffee and cake at a modest price and somewhere to meet up before and after walks and events. It will be the place to check out late availability on walks, meet off duty walk leaders, catch up with friends old and new and hang up your boots (both literally and metaphorically) between walks. The Hay Walking Festival hub provide a meeting place in Hay-on-Way for all walkers during the festival. It is your opportunity to study the local maps and investigate more about Hay and the local area. You can discover how Hay is set to become a centre for walking in the Brecon Beacons National Park and borders area. It is the crossing point of two major long distance paths, Offa’s Dyke National Path and the Wye Valley Walk, so is an ideal location and base for walking in the area.

Dick Whittington at the Everyman Theatre 30 November - 13 January 2013 The Everyman Theatre, Regent Street, Cheltenham, GL50 1HQ Time: 10am, 2pm & 7pm (please check dates) Tickets: from £11 With a streetwise cat as his companion, Dick defeats the evil Queen Rat, finds his fortune, marries Alice and becomes Lord Mayor! Join the cast of familiar faces - and this year the Everyman is delighted to welcome Tweedy the Clown - fresh from Giffords Circus - for a festiva feast of laughs, thrills and spills, underwater kingdoms and far away lands. Book your seats now - Dick Whittington is sure to be the cat’s whiskers!




Choose your seat & travel in our own ‘gold’ coaches. 14 Oct ..... 4 days ......HISTORIC KENT ......................£280 s/s £57 4* Mercure Maidstone Hotel for 3 Nights Half Board 26 Oct ..... 3 days .....BEST OF BRITISH ....................£198 s/s £40 2* Leicester Marriott Hotel for 2 Nights Half Board 02 Nov .... 2 days .....OLYMPIC LONDON ..................£134 s/s £23 4* Guoman Tower Hotel London for 1 Night Bed & Breakfast 30 Nov .... 4 days .....FESTIVE YORKSHIRE & ST NICHOLAS FAYR ......................................................................£265 s/s £60 3* Best Western Cedar Court Hotel Harrogate Hotel for 3 Nights Half Board 23 Dec .... 5 days ......A DORSET CHRISTMAS .............£465 s/s £60 4* The Suncliff Hotel Bournemouth for 4 Nights Full Board

Tours which are full or nearly full: 5 days WARNER BEMBRIDGE ISLE OF WIGHT 1st October 5 days TURKEY & TINSEL WARNERS LITTLECOTE 19th November 4 days THURSFORD & BLENHEIM PALACE 25th November

EXCURSIONS & SHOWS: Contact us for details of prices and the limited pick-up points. Wed 12th Sept Wed 19th Sept Tue 25th Sept Fri 28th Sept Tue 2nd Oct Tue 9th Oct Sun 14th Oct Thu 18th Oct Wed 24th Oct Sun 28th Oct Sat 3rd Nov Thu 8th Nov Sun 11th Nov Sun 11th Nov Thu 15th Nov Fri 16th Nov Thu 22nd Nov Sun 25th Nov Thu 6th Dec Sat 8th Dec Fri 14th Dec Wed 19th Dec

Cheltenham Shopper Festival Park Outlet Ebbw Vale Buscot Park & Faringdon Collection Highgrove Gardens Wye Valley & Labels Outlet Cabot Circus Shopper Bristol Knitting & Stitching Show London Swindon Outlet Shopper Bristol & SS Great Britain Lion King Bristol Hippodrome 2.30pm perf. Disney on Ice Birmingham Cribbs Causeway Shopper Crafts Christmas/Hobbycrafts NEC Cake International NEC RAF in Concert Bristol Swindon Outlet Shopper Cheltenham Shopper Birmingham Tattoo 2pm perf. Bath Christmas Fayre Caerphilly Christmas Market Hereford Victorian Christmas Market Swindon Outlet Shopper


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Bromyard Road, Worcester WR2 5YJ. Call 01905 469076 or visit Fuel consumption figures for the Jazz range in mpg (l/100km): Urban 40.9 – 61.4 (6.9 – 4.6), Extra Urban 57.7 – 64.2 (4.9 – 4.4), Combined 50.4 – 62.8 (5.6 – 4.5). CO2 emissions: 129 – 104 g/km. Model shown: Jazz 1.4 i-VTEC ES Manual in Alabaster Silver Metallic at £14,200 including metallic paint. All figures are correct at time of publication but may be subject to change.


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Home, car and travel insurance are provided by Ageas Insurance Limited. Gas and Electricity is provided by E.ON Energy Solutions Ltd. Age UK is a registered trademark of Age UK (Charity Number 1128267). The use of the name and logo Age UK is done so under a licence agreement Age to UK and Age UK Enterprises Limited, its commercial services arm. s Limited, its commercial services arm. Net profitsbetween are donated Net profits are donated to Age UK. Age UK Enterprises Limited, Linhay House, Ashburton Devon TQ13 7UP. CMY





take a scientific approach to food

Dave Myers and Simon King alias The Hairy Bikers were in the middle of a regime of diet and exercise when we chatted. Yes, sorry, I know you’ll probably have to read that sentence again. Those two well-covered foodies? Diet? Exercise? Fear not. It’s all in the cause of a new cookery book about dieting and Dave and Simon had thrown themselves into both food and exercise regimes with the kind of enthusiasm they normally reserve for a piece of garlic-dripping Italian foccaccia bread or a couple of their favourite beers. “Yes, I know,” explains Simon, the blonde Geordie member of the famous chef duo. “It doesn’t sound like us, but obesity is a real problem in this country at the moment, hen, and we’re just trying to help.” As a result, Simon, aged 45, had been hitting the gym regularly – “and it’s working. I’m not sure how much weight I’ve lost because I’ve got some dodgy scales that say 20 stone 5lb one minute and 14 stone 8lb the next, but I know I can get into some jeans I couldn’t before. Mind you, I’m still a fat lad!” he roars familiarly.


Dave, at 55, sounds like he’s taken a more scientific approach to the subject. He’s lost a stone and a half, has taken up boxing but still manages to sound incredulous when he says :”Do y’know, I’m actually enjoying the sessions.” You might be forgiven for not putting “weight-loss” and “The Hairy Bikers” in the same sentence because the likeable lads have spent the past eight years showing us what fun food can be – both making it and eating it. They’ve travelled around the UK and across the globe gathering culinary experiences and footage for their TV series, astride some seriously large motorbikes. Their trademark has been making new friends via food, cooking in people’s homes and generally acting as brilliant ambassadors for the best dishes that people can make for themselves. “The new cookery book will still be about food, though,” states Dave, the darker, bespectacled one. “It’s just that we’ll be showing good food that you can easily make with fewer calories in it so it won’t put too much weight on.” The two are speaking ahead of their new country-wide tour that starts in September and takes in 41 venues over the next three months, from Barrow in Furness to Bolton and Lowestoft to Liverpool. It’s their first live tour since their last sell-out tour two years ago, and it sounds like their usual eclectic mix of fun, socialising and, er, some cooking.

INTERVIEW “It’s definitely not going to be two blokes on a sofa talking about food,” laughs Dave. “There’s loads going on. We’re having strip tombola and an escapologist – oh, and we’ll be doing the tango. We’ll also have a couple of people from the audience having a meal with wine and beer on the stage with us. We love that, and so do they!”

They’ve also sold millions of cookery books linked to the series, and now earned themselves a BAFTA nomination for their Meals on Wheels programmes. These highlighted the vital visiting service to the elderly, and they also tried – successfully - to put the emphasis back on regular freshly-cooked meals for them.

In fact, Dave and Simon love most things about their lives currently, although it wasn’t always as easy or straightforward. Both grew up with ailing parents: Dave’s mum had Multiple Sclerosis and Simon’s Dad was on kidney dialysis.

They’re both delighted about the nomination and, Simon insists, they hope the subject will continue to catch the public imagination because it’s an important one. “In the series, it wasn’t Dave and I who were the stars of the show but all these marvellous older people,” he insists.

For Dave, who was born when his father was 55, his earliest memory of cooking is when he was around eight helping his mum bake bread, simple fruit scones and a Victoria sponge. As an older dad, his father was able to spend plenty of time with Dave, although from around the age of 13 it was Dave who did the bulk of the cooking at home. He later went to art school “but I was a better cook than an artist,” he recalls. It was when he became a make-up artist specialising in prosthetics and was working on the set of a Catherine Cookson TV drama that he met Simon, then a first assistant director and locations’ manager. The two shared a love of bikes and food, began cooking together – and a legend was born. Simon’s first foodie memory is of making sandwiches, strangely enough “with the crusts taken off and cut into little triangles”, when he was about six and helping in the kitchen. “But most of the time I was just off out scrambling about, no time to cook!” he says, with that gentle rumbling roar of laughter bubbling up. Their first programmes for the BBC eight years ago were more travelogue than cookery show, but the emphasis gradually changed to the enjoyable format that has attracted so many viewers today.

“They’ve got the most wonderful cookery knowledge themselves. It’s so important for older people to keep on cooking good food like they always did, and share their skills with their grandchildren to keep these going and become a real legacy.” The two Northerners and their easygoing style has already been credited with tickling taste-buds at home and abroad, whether that’s sampling breads in Poland or guzzling nougat in the French town of Montelimar. But it’s plain they are genuinely passionate about all that’s best in food and sharing the enthusiasm to create it. Although the new cookery book has a dietary theme, food enjoyment as always comes first. “We’ll be doing dishes like a really tasty cassoulet and a great Masala Spatchcock Chicken,” states Dave.

As for the problematic weight-loss, they’re both confident they can lead this new campaign trimly from the front. “Well,” adds Simon, “If God is good and he keeps me off the brown ale!”

For details of tour dates and venues go to 15

Driver Refresher Sessions for the Over 70s If you live in Herefordshire and are over 70 years of age and find driving stressful, or you feel your confidence behind the wheel needs a boost then we can help you. Herefordshire Council is offering you a two hour subsidised practical driving session, in your own vehicle, with an Approved Driving Instructor. If you would like to take up this opportunity please fill in the form and return it to the road safety unit at the address below along with a fee of £10.00, (non-refundable). Please make cheques payable to Herefordshire Council. The road safety unit will then arrange for an Approved Driving Instructor to contact you to arrange a convenient date and time and to discuss with you your requirements with regard to the type of driving that you require, e.g. motorway, rural, town.


I would like to take up the offer of the subsidised driver refresher session at a cost of £10.00.

Name:........................................................................................................................................ Address: ................................................................................................................................... ………………………………………………………………………………………............................ Tel. No:...................................................................................................................................... Date of Birth:............................................................................................................................. l l l l l

confirm that I am not taking any medication that could affect my driving. confirm that there is no medical reason that prevents me from driving. confirm that I can read a vehicle number plate from 67 feet (20.5 metres, about 5 car lengths) in good daylight. confirm my vehicle is taxed, insured and has a valid MOT. confirm the fee of £10.00 is attached.

Please return to: Herefordshire Council, Road Safety Unit, Plough Lane Hereford, HR4 0LE.

If you would like to discuss this further please contact Herefordshire Council’s Road Safety Unit on 01432 260946.

Always check with your pharmacist or doctor to ensure that your medication will not adversely affect your driving. Did you know that some prescription drugs or over-the-counter remedies can:-

• • • •

Cause drowsiness Affect your concentration Reduce your reaction times Impair your overall driving ability

AND please remember you are also breaking the law if you do not use your seatbelt For more information please contact Herefordshire Council's Road Safety Unit on 01432 260946

THE NATION’S FAVOURITE FRENCH CHEF Jean-Christophe Novelli is a 5 out of 5 AA Rosette and Michelin award winning chef and he has been dubbed the “the nation’s favourite French chef ”. Exclusively for Port Salut, Jean-Christophe has created two French themed recipes and a series of tips for creating the perfect cheeseboard. “Port Salut is a classic French cheese which I have always enjoyed, so I was delighted to be asked to work with the brand. For the recipes I have used Port Salut to give traditional French dishes a new twist and I hope my cheeseboard tips will give your cheese course a whole new lease of life.”

CHAR GRILLED CHICKEN, LEEK, PORT SALUT AND BUTTON MUSHROOM FRICASSEE, WHOLE MEAL CROUTON INGREDIENTS 4 x skinned and boneless chicken supreme’s (cut into thin strips) 2 leeks, trimmed, washed and cut into thin slices 2 x spring onions (trimmed and chopped into thin roundels) 1 clove of garlic (peeled and crushed) 100g chestnut or button mushrooms (sliced) 100g grated Port Salut 50g breadcrumbs 50g grated Port Salut 75ml double cream 25g butter 1 bunch of chives (chopped) 4 slices of wholemeal bread (cut into fingers) 25ml olive oil 1/2 tsp dried herbs 1/2 glass white wine


Heat a char grill skillet until very hot, brush the chicken strips with some of the oil and season with salt and pepper and your favourite spice, paprika is good as is cumin or garam marsala.


Quickly char grill the chicken pieces until well coloured and cooked through. Remove from the skillet and keep warm.


In a large saucepan melt the butter over a low heat.


Add the leek and spring onion and sweat until tender.


Add the garlic and the mushrooms and continue to cook until the mushrooms are tender and softened.


Add the white wine and the cream and allow to boil


Add the 100g of Port Salut and continue to simmer until the cheese is melted and the sauce is thick. Add the chives.


Add the strips of chicken and stir in to coat with the sauce.


Place in an oven proof serving dish.

10. In a small mixing bowl combine the 50g of Port Salut with the breadcrumbs and scatter this over the top. 11. Bake in a pre heated oven until the crumbs are crisp and golden and the cheese has melted.


Place the bread fingers on a baking tray.


Brush with olive oil & dried herbs and season with cracked pepper


Bake in a hot oven until crisp and golden brown. Serve on a side plate with the chicken and leek fricassee.

Jean-Christophe Novelli has produced these tips exclusively for Port Salut. Visit for more info.

CRISPY GRANARY BRUSCHETTA, POACHED EGG, SPINACH AND A PORT SALUT GLAZE. INGREDIENTS 4 eggs (free range, large) 2-3 tablespoons of white wine vinegar 4 thick slices of ciabattas bread 25ml olive oil 1/2 tsp dried herbs 400g washed baby spinach leaves 100ml double cream 4 egg yolks 100g Port Salut (grated) 50g butter (optional) Sprinkle of ground nutmeg


Place the slices of ciabattas on a baking sheet and brush with olive oil and season with dried herbs, salt and pepper.


Place in a hot oven and bake until crisp and golden brown.


Place on four plates or a serving dish.


In a large sauce pan heat plenty of water to boiling point.


Add a couple of tablespoons of white wine vinegar and season to taste with salt.


Once boiling stir with a whisk to start a circular motion in the water and crack in the eggs one at a time, bring to the boil and immediately turn down to a simmer. Cook for 3-4 minutes if a soft egg is required, a little longer for a firmer egg and 5-7 minutes for a hard poached egg.


Keep the eggs warm in the water until needed.


In a sauce pan bring the cheese to the boil, reduce for a few minutes to thicken. Remove from the heat.


Stir in the Port Salut and the eggs, allow the cheese to melt

10. In a frying pan add half the butter if used and add the spinach cover with a tight fitting lid and bring to the boil allow the water from the spinach to cook the leaves and when soft and wilted strain to remove any excess water remaining. 11. Season with salt and pepper and spoon an equal amount onto each ciabatta bruschetta.


Add some flavoured texture to your cheeseboard by dropping plain bread in favour of a fruit & nut bread such as apricot & walnut or prune & hazelnut and serve it slightly stale, cut into thin wafer slices


Fruit and cheese are a classic combination but give your grapes some extra character by serving them frozen – simply wash a bunch of grapes and shake off any excess water, place on a plate and pop in the freezer, serve directly once frozen onto the cheeseboard giving a more interesting texture with extra bite


Add a simple twist on the traditional by pairing your cheese with fruit that has a sharp acidity such as: cherries, raspberries, gooseberries, redcurrants, nectarines and tangy plums – these work well frozen too


Turn your cheeseboard into a visual feast by serving long celery stems in a vase of ice water. Team with a small bowl of rock salt too for dipping


Radishes are a tasty substitute to celery providing a peppery bite, leave a little stem on each on to hold on to and these can also be dipped in the rock salt


A fashionable alternative to the classic chutney is quince jelly – its sweet flavour will add a different dimension to your cheeseboard


Spice up your cheeseboard with a handful of sliced chillies or jalapenos, to give a flavoursome punch. This works particularly well with hard cheeses – these will complement the quince jelly too


Tantalise tastebuds with a rollercoaster ride of textures and flavours by adding olives and nuts to your cheeseboard


For an unexpected flavour, add some ground coffee beans to your board. A little sprinkle will give your cheeseboard a delicious edge

12. Top with an egg and mask with the cheese and cream mix. 13. Place under a hot grill until bubbling and golden brown. 14. Garnish with some snipped chives and serve.

10. Use dried vine leaves, herb sprigs and edible flowers to add more drama, aroma and taste to your cheeseboard


50 Plus Health

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CATARACT Know the warning signs

Cataract is one of the most common causes of sight loss in the UK, but it needn’t be. Leading sight loss charity RNIB (Royal National Institute of Blind People) warns that 50 per cent of sight loss could be avoided and that people should be more aware of what to look out for. A cataract is a clouding of the part of the eye called the lens. It causes vision to become blurred because the cataract is like frosted glass, interfering with a person’s sight. The lens is a clear tissue found behind the iris, the coloured part of the eye. The lens helps to focus light on the back of the eye – the retina – forming an image.

What to look out for: If you experience any of the following symptoms make an appointment for an eye examination:Blurry Sight: This is very common. You may notice that your sight has become blurred or misty, or that your glasses seem dirty or appear scratched. Dazzled By Light: You may be dazzled by lights, such as a car headlamps, and sunlight. Change of Colour Vision: Your colours may become washed out or faded. If your doctor or optician has told you that you have a cataract, don’t be alarmed. Cataracts are very common with one in three people over 65 being diagnosed in the UK. Many people over 60 have some cataract and the vast majority can be treated successfully. Cataract surgery, where the cloudy lens is removed during

an operation, is one of the most successful eye operations. If you or someone you know has a sight problem, RNIB can help. Call the RNIB Helpline on 0303 123 9999 or visit Optimax is one of the UK’s leading Laser Eye Surgery specialists. Founded in 1991, it has carried out more than 350, 000 treatments. We offer a range of treatments suitable for those over 40, which can restore natural vision and give you freedom from glasses. These include Intra - Ocular Lens procedures. These Intra-Ocular Lenses replace the natural lens, which may eliminate the need for glasses and restore natural vision at the same time. What all Optimax treatments have in common is helping people to see the world more clearly. Choose Optimax for unbeatable results, affordable prices and outstanding patient care.

If your vision has declined or become blurry in recent years, don’t assume that a stronger prescription is all you need for a quick fix.

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2012 31/07/2012 10:41:35

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Interior Designer Chrissy Halton

THE children have all left home for lives of their own or you suddenly realise one day that the house you’re in is simply too big for your needs. Whatever the reason, it’s time to DOWNSIZE!

The National Association of Estate Agents says that downsizing offers a chance to have “a thorough springclean and focus on exactly what you want in your new home, and what you don’t.”

Once, downsizing carried a bit of a stigma, almost as if you couldn’t afford the home you had so you had to go for something less. But, in today’s cost-conscious, energyefficient and finance-orientated world, many more people are downsizing for all the right reasons.

“You may have furniture which isn’t suitable for your new home, or that could do with replacing. So think ahead and make sure you have taken proper measurements of your new property so you don’t struggle on moving day with items that you probably shouldn’t have brought with you.”

Along with finding a smaller property to live in, however, comes some unusual dilemmas – along with the usual dilemmas of how to furnish the new home and what is surplus to requirements.

For many of us, the pull of our old home is all about the memories that we’ve shared as a family within those bricks and mortar. Our children may have grown up here, and every room can be associated with personal milestones or events that matter to our own family history.

Interior designer Chrissy Halton from Innerspace offers some simple advice: “When downsizing, don’t try and replicate the house you had – go for a new look. “And only take with you items that really mean something to you. Off-white walls look great with more antique furniture items, for example. Less is more!” The advantages of moving to a smaller property can be that your bills are likely to be smaller and there will be less housework needed. The first big minus, though, is that you’ve probably got far too many possessions to fit into your new home. “You can’t take everything with you,” says Chrissy, “so start by having a really good de-clutter so that you can really see what you have that you love. That way you can more easily make the decision about what to take – and you don’t have to pay the removal company too much!” Ask your relatives and friends if they would like to have particular items that you don’t want to take with you. There’s a growing trend for mixing old and new furniture currently so they may be glad to be offered a piece they’ve coveted or that may fit in their home. Or look to sell items on ebay and start afresh in your new home with some new furniture.


“If you’re worried about losing all the history behind your old home, think about using photos to show your life,” adds Chrissy. “It’s easy to make them into beautiful collages, and that way you can ‘take’ the items with you without having the real thing.” When it actually comes to chucking out much-loved – and possibly worn – furniture or other items, contact a local charity which might be glad of household goods and especially furniture in good condition. The national homeless charity Emmaus, for example, may have a local collection service for unwanted furniture, or another charitable organisation may be willing to pick up your item to sell for funds or to give it a good home with someone else who really needs it. It’s important to plan ahead with your new space. “Think about how you’re going to use the space you are moving to,” says Chrissy. “What is the purpose of each room? How many people will you need to fit in to sit? Will you really need a dining room specifically?” “Situations change and what you once needed you may no longer require. If you actually look at how much time you spend in each room of your current home now, you may be very surprised at how little space you actually use on a

regular basis. Take this – and what items you use – as a gauge for what you need to take with you.” For example, she points out, if your new bathroom is smaller than you’ve been used to, is it worth removing the bath and having a larger shower? This may not only make more sense for your daily living but can help with any current or future mobility issues. Whatever style of décor you choose for your new home, it’s worth trying to avoid clutter and opt for today’s cleaner lines and minimalist approach – if only to cut down on housework! Take a look at current interior styles and how these can be easily achieved. Open up a dark room or small bathroom with a roof window or skylight, for example. Take advantage of the wealth of modern flooring including natural woods that can make a room warm and homely in Winter and cool and calming in Summer. You might like to team this type of flooring with a handsome rug in a shade or pattern that tones with your room’s chosen colour scheme.

LOVELY LOUNGE – Relaxing toning, muted shades, a lack of clutter and plenty of light can be the hallmark of your new lounge when you downsize.

Plain walls matched with attractive fabrics in curtains or blinds give a room a modern look and allow smart furniture and impressive pictures or photographs to really come into their own. If the downsizing also applies to your pocket, then you don’t have to spend a fortune on your new place. In fact, there’s often an enjoyable challenge in keeping within a tight budget yet coming up with something fresh, new and comfortable even if the items are cut-price or second-hand. Again, ebay can be a boon here.

The key to successfully moving at this crucial stage is to take a fresh look at your lifestyle, and decide to make a new start. That way you can downsize the costs – but upsize your enjoyment of your new home!

BEDROOM BEAUTY – Go for pretty fabrics in blinds and warm shades that can be picked up in bedding to create this attractive smaller bedroom.

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The London Olympics this year has made many of us think about taking up a new sporting activity or improving our fitness and age should certainly provide no barrier. A new interest introduces us to new people, and offers us the chance to feel well both physically and mentally. Physiotherapist Karen Willcock points out that, while we can’t turn back the clock, we can slow down or even reverse the symptoms of ageing with the help of exercise. “The risks of back pain, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, depression, the possibility of having a fall, dementia and some cancers can all be lessened by regular exercising no matter what age we start,” she explained. Strength, balance, stretching and endurance exercises are all recommended and found in a variety of sports and activities - “but always talk to your doctor first, warm up beforehand, don’t just be a ‘weekend warrior’ – and listen to your body,” added Karen. But what to take up? While being over 50 may be a little late to suddenly excel in rigorously physical sports like gymnastics, there are still many activities that offer an enjoyable challenge - and fun. If walking appeals to you, this is one of the easiest activities to enjoy. You just need a good, strong pair of

shoes or walking boots, waterproofs and light, breathable clothing. You can start with a shorter walk and build up or just find your favourite distance. Elizabeth Oakes, aged 59, began walking as a past-time 14 years ago because she was involved in organising treks and other sporting events for charity Children Today. “I started taking regular walks of two and a half miles around the estate where I live because I could do that anytime, and then built up at the weekends,” she said. These days, she will typically go out on a Saturday afternoon for a three-hour walk and has trekked in exotic spots like Borneo – all with her trusty walking boots that cost £130 when she first began. “That’s one expense that’s been very worthwhile!” she added. “Walking is great! You enjoy the fresh air, the surrounding countryside and feel loads better afterwards.” There are often local walking groups, councils may organise walks or go the website of the Ramblers Association or the British Walking Federation One sport anyone can try at a local sports centre quite cheaply is badminton. It’s a fast sport that involves hitting a shuttlecock across a net and trying to prevent your opponent from getting it back, improving hand-eye co-ordination and movement. Racquets start at around £8 for a basic type and go up to £150 for top-of-the-range carbon fibre models. You need a tube of shuttlecocks, light trainers suitable for indoor wear and t-shirt and tracksuit bottoms or shorts. There are probably badminton clubs in your area; find out more from Badminton England at www. All ages love the social inter-action and exercise available in tennis either at a local club, sports centre or courts in the park. Like badminton, you need a racquet, starting from £15 up to £150, outdoor trainers or sports shoes and light clothing. Find out about local clubs and facilities from the Lawn Tennis Association at Like tennis and badminton, table tennis is a sport for all levels of fitness and also for those with disabilities or just restricted movement. Clubs and sports centres often have table tennis tables set up and informal games are great fun. Light clothing and indoor trainers are ideal and bats cost from around £3 to £100. Play informally with friends or grandchildren, or find out about clubs in your area from the English Table Tennis Association at A fast-growing sport that people who’ve enjoyed squash may really like is racketball. It’s played on a squash court with similar rules but with a bigger ball, which means


you don’t have to warm it up before play, and a shorter racket - all of which makes the game easier than squash. Doug Tobutt, a 62 year-old sports retailer who was a keen squash player before he gave it up for running, has recently taken up the sport. He reports that it’s become very popular especially in Nottingham and parts of Yorkshire. “It’s great fun,” he said, “and several players who had to give up squash through injuries are making their comeback at racketball – me included!” For more details go to the British Squash and Racketball Association at Many older people currently play bowls, whether crown green or flat depending on where you live around the country. It’s a sociable, fresh air activity that demands good hand-eye co-ordination and discerning judgement and can often be seen on greens around our parks and at private bowling clubs during the warmer months. Comfortable clothing is a must for this. The bowls are expensive to buy – from around £53 to £100 – but you can pick up second-hand bowls on ebay and elsewhere at a fraction of that price. Find out about local facilities on crown green bowling from the British Crown Green Bowling Associatin at or flat bowling at Bowl England’s website You don’t have to have a costly bike or be Bradley Wiggins to enjoy cycling around country lanes, roads or dedicated tracks. While a new bike might cost a couple of hundred pounds it’s possible to pick one up second-hand on ebay or via newspaper advertising columns. There are many cycling clubs around the country, local councils often arrange rides for beginners around areas and Sky Rides are organised community rides for all the family. Find out about them at or about other cycling events from British Cycling at www. If there is one sport that’s bound up in England’s history it’s archery. It’s not necessary to live in Sherwod Forest to try it in 2012, though, as it’s a very accessible sport and the most popular type of archery is at a stationary circular target.

Again, this is a sport for all ages and all levels of fitness including people in wheelchairs, and there are clubs all over the country many of which have their own bows for beginners to try. Contact Archery GB via www.archerygb. org Older people find yoga and Pilates especially beneficial and enjoyable. Explained teacher Linda Obertelli-Roden: “As we get older our flexibility reduces, muscles may shorten and tighten. Yoga can help get people flexible again.” Yoga is a spiritual, mental and physical discipline which goes back thousands of years. “It concentrates on posture and breathing and is very helpful for stiff joints as well as being a great de-stresser”, added Linda. “You can join a class or buy a DVD and practise at home.” Pilates is also about mind and body working together. Its movements help create a strong core, abdominals and spine – “which is also very useful as we get older,” said Linda. Light loose clothing is best, and you can buy a mat from supermarkets or stores from around £5. Classes for both are widespread but check for accredited teachers via governing bodies including the British Wheel of Yoga at and for Pilates, the Register of Exercise Professionals at Some council-run sports centres are particularly proactive with the over-50s. At Leisure@Cheltenham, for example, they not only run a full programme of sports activities but also specific classes for older people which are proving particularly popular. Daniel Brooks, centre events’ co-ordinator, explained that they have a team of qualified, experienced staff who understand the needs of older people. As a result there’s a busy week full of events, from Monday badminton sessions to Thursday Pilates’ sessions, all specially tailored for older people. The centre even has exercise sessions for people who are chair-bound or have hip or back problems. “In this day and age there’s really no excuse why everyone can’t do some form of exercise,” commented Daniel. “There is something out there for them. Just ask at your local sports centre or private sports club.” 25

Active Life Programme for the over 50’s Come and enjoy the full range of 50+ activities which we have here at leisure@cheltenham. Activities include: Free health walks Exercise to music classes Drop-in Badminton 50+ lane swimming

Health Walks:


Free, led health walks every week from the centre taking in Pittville Park and the surrounding areas. Monday at 2pm. 20-40 minutes - All welcome particularly new / inexperienced walkers. Coffee and a natter afterwards.

Re-Active is Cheltenham Borough Council and NHS Gloucestershire’s physical activity referral scheme.

Exercise to Music classes We have a range of classes here tailored for the over 50’s. These include Active Bodies, Sit Fit, Pilates, Active Balance and Gentle Aerobics. All classes are charged at a discounted price.

50+ Badminton We have 50+ drop in badminton sessions on a Monday & Wednesday afternoon between 2-4pm. Cost is £2.20 per session.

Whether used alone or alongside medication, physical activity has been shown to significantly reduce the effects of many medical conditions. Re-Active has been developed in order to help encourage those who would benefit from a programme of activity, providing the opportunity to do this in a supportive, empowering and effective environment. The 12 week programme of physical activity is available by referral by a health professional, such as a GP or practice nurse, after consultation with a patient who meets with the programme’s criteria. If you would like more information on Re-Active please contact your GP.

50+ Swimming

Active Life in the Community


Anytime Price

Off Peak Price

Peak Price

Racquets (per court)




Squash (45 minutes)







Concession Cards

Health Suite

As part of the work that we do in partnership with the NHS locally, we provide a programme of community-based classes. These take place around Cheltenham in local community centres. • Active Bodies at Leckhampton Village Hall - Mondays 12 noon, £2.50

Standard ETM Class

• Active Bodies at Springbank Resource Centre - Wednesdays 10.45am, £3.00

This programme also includes 2 classes per week at the leisure centre for those who are 50+ • 50+ Aqua Aerobics - Monday 8.45am • A chair-based Osteoporosis class - Tuesdays 2.00 - 2.45 and Thursdays 12.00 - 12.45








Fitness Suite




Reactive (GP Referral) – 12 week programme Price per activity




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Respiratory Class




Monday a.m Aqua




50 Plus Swim





FREE 1 DAY PASS Includes gym, swim, spa and exercise class*.

• Classes are £2.10 each.


Concession Card Activities


Individuals over 60 years qualify for a leisure@concession. There is a £6.00 annual fee for the concession card which gives the holder discounts on certain activities.


We have designated 50+ lane swimming sessions held Monday - Friday 3.00 - 3.45pm each day. Cost is £1.10 per swim.

Email: Prior to using the gym a PARQ and induction must be completed. Users must be 16 or over. You must be 18 or over to use the spa. Children must be accompanied at all times whilst in the centre. Terms and conditions apply * One exercise class only. Class must be booked when handing pass to customer services.

I’m fit for life with... T: 01242 528764 Tommy Taylors Lane, Cheltenham, Glos, GL50 4RN

Davey Franklin Jones Solicitors answer your questions on Wills, Probate and Powers of Attorney Q. If I make a Will, does this make things easier because probate will not be needed when I pass away?

issued by the court would be called a Grant of Letters of Administration, which may or may not have your Will annexed to it.

A. Wills and Probate are not the same thing: A common misconception is that if you make a Will, your executors “will not need to take out probate” on your death. This is not usually the case. Your Will is the legal document that states how you would like your estate to be dealt with on your death: who is to deal with your affairs (your executors) and who is to inherit your assets (your beneficiaries). Probate is the court’s authority, given to a person or persons to administer a deceased person’s estate and the document issued by the Probate Service is called a Grant of Representation. This document is usually required by the asset holders as proof to show that the correct person or persons have the Probate Service’s authority to administer the estate. If you have left a Will appointing executors, it is these people who will administer your estate and the document will be called a Grant of Probate. Any other person who may end up dealing with your estate would be called an administrator, and the document

Whether or not a Grant of Representation will be required on your death depends entirely on your individual circumstances. You do not need a grant for jointly owned property that will pass to the surviving owner or owners, nor may you need a grant if the value of the estate is particularly small. Each bank and building society has their own different procedure and each one has a different limit to the funds they will release without a grant being required. If however your estate falls below a certain level, sometimes the accounts can be closed and paid to your executors or your beneficiaries, without a grant needing to be obtained. If a deceased person owns a house on their own, or ISAs or shareholdings, by way of examples, then it is more than likely that the a Grant of Representation will be required to deal with those assets. So why make a Will if you will need to get a grant anyway? If you do not make a Will, then the way your estate must be distributed is governed by law, known as the Intestacy Rules. You do not get a say in who inherits what. Also those same people will usually be the ones who administer your estate. Because there is no Will to refer to, more caution is taken in dealing with administrators as there may be other people with higher priority in inheriting and dealing with the estate. It is therefore best to incorporate all your wishes within a Will, naming specific executors to deal with matters on your behalf. By confirming this in a legal document, rather than leaving it to chance, your affairs will be able to be dealt with more quickly and in a more orderly way, making life much easier for those you have left behind.

Q. I have a power of attorney in place, so does this mean I do not need a Will A. People can sometimes get confused with the arrangements they have in place, with a common mix up being between Wills and Lasting Powers of Attorney. Clients may think that because they have one document or the other in place, that their affairs will always be dealt with and taken care of as they would like, no matter what, however this is not the case. A Lasting Power of Attorney (in its previous form called an Enduring Power of Attorney) is a document that you (known as the donor) can put in place to appoint a person or persons to act on your behalf (known as the attorney or attorneys). The document usually relates to 28

LEGAL & FINANCE your property and financial affairs, although there is a separate Lasting Power of Attorney to deal with your health and personal welfare issues. The powers allow your attorney or attorneys to make decisions relating to the matters covered by the specific document on your behalf, in particular when you no longer have the mental capacity to make those decisions on your own. Those decisions however must be made in your best interests and, with the exception of small seasonal gifts or similar transactions, your assets are still yours and to be used for your benefit. The Lasting Power of Attorney, if not brought to an end beforehand, will end on your death. A Will on the other hand, speaks from death, so your executors are the people you appoint to deal with your affairs and the beneficiaries are the people you have chosen to inherit either particular items, cash gifts, or receiving the whole of or a share of the residue of your estate. Your executors may well be the same people as you have appointed as your attorneys, but this does not have to be the case. Therefore on the date of your death, the attorneys should stop acting, and your executors should start. All the people you appoint, as

either attorneys or executors, should be your choice, and must be people that you trust. Both Lasting Powers of Attorney and Wills are important documents and are worth having in place, to ensure that your affairs, during your lifetime and after your death, can be dealt with properly and in the way that you want. Not having a Lasting Power of Attorney in place may mean that your family or another person may have to apply to the Court of Protection to be appointed as your deputy. They will then take over dealing with your affairs if you have lost mental capacity without putting alternative arrangements in place. Not having a Will means that your estate will need to be dealt with under “the Rules of Intestacy” which is the law set down by statute as to who is able to administer your affairs and who will inherit your estate. Depending on your family circumstances, this may be distant or estranged family members, or ultimately may be the Crown.

For more information on any of the above issues or to make an appointment call Davey Franklin Jones Solicitors.

For You Residential Property Wills Tax Planning Probate & Trusts Protecting Family Wealth Personal Injury Clinical Negligence Resolution of Private Disputes

Your Family

Christopher Mills

Private Client Solicitor

Christopher says, “the complexities of the modern family unit, make it essential to obtain advice on tax planning when drafting your Will, administering estates and considering a Lasting Power of Attorney. These are essential tools to avoid overwhelming difficulties for your family and friends during challenging times”. Christopher and the Private Client team look forward to meeting you.

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10-12 Dollar Street | Cirencester | Gloucestershire | GL7 2AL | Tel: 01285 654875 Navigation House | 23-25 Commercial Road | Gloucester | GL1 2ED | Tel: 01452 508800 e:mail: or


How to choose the right Home Care Agency Whether you’re choosing a home care agency for a family member or starting to plan for your own future, there are several important things that you should consider. Here are a few useful pointers to help you along the way.

Top 10 key questions to ask when choosing a Home Care agency • Can the agency provide the care needed, and have they provided care before for someone with similar needs? • Are you confident the agency and staff will respect your privacy and dignity? • Have they taken the time to understand your personal likes and dislikes? • How do they match the most suitable care workers to your needs? Will you always have the same carers, and what happens if they are sick or go on holiday?

Your right to quality home care Your chosen home care provider is there to look after you. It should help you to make your own decisions and support you in maintaining your own independence. That also means treating you with respect, valuing you as a person and respecting your privacy. If you need assistance with tasks such as dressing, bathing and toileting, you have the right to choose your carer, whenever possible. Remember, it’s your care and you have the right to be involved in every aspect of your care. Don’t ever be afraid to ask for a family member or friend to be kept informed about your home care too.

Home care agency standards All agencies have a ‘Statement of Purpose’ that sets out their aims and objectives and the type of the services they offer. If you’re employing an agency, they should give you a contract explaining all terms and conditions. This will include things such as their confidentiality policy – for example, how they will hold and use personal data. All home care agency employees should also have clear written guidelines and follow robust procedures on how to administer and assist with any medication needs.

Before your home care starts It’s important to always make sure that the home care agency you choose visits you at home, before care starts. This will give you the chance to discuss your requirements in detail to ensure that you’re happy with your choice of provider. A good home care agency will answer any questions you may have during this visit. The visit will also give the agency the opportunity to see the environment in which they will be working. If possible, arrange for a family member or friend to be there when the home care agency visits.


• What charges will you be expected to pay (Is there a minimum charge)? And how you will be invoiced? • Is the agency insured to protect your safety and interests? • Do all care workers undergo a Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) check before being employed? And what ongoing training do they receive? • Does the agency have a copy of its latest inspection report available for you to look at? • Can your agency be contacted outside office hours or in an emergency? • Will the agency give you a copy of the agency’s standard contract to read before signing? • How will they ensure your safety?

So you’re thinking about using an agency to provide home care? But how can you make sure that the home care provider you choose treats and cares for you in the right way? Initial home visit by a home care agency During the initial home visit by the home care agency, they will carry out a detailed risk assessment of your home, as well as a manual handling assessment. This is important, as it will identify how the agency staff will move you safely around your home, if assistance is required. All staff should be fully trained on using equipment such as a hoist, to help bear your weight safely, if needed.

Keeping you safe and secure in your own home It’s the job of the home care agency staff to make sure that you are safe and secure in your own home when they are working with you. Every home care agency must have procedures in place to protect those using home care services, to reduce the risk of accidents, and protect people from any form of abuse including physical, emotional and financial abuse. This will also include an agreement about gaining access to your home. Care workers should have ID cards to show their photograph, their name, the agency’s name and agency contact details. Home care agencies must also have a policy in place that sets out how staff should handle money, if you ask them to buy things, or to pay a bill for you.

Keeping records of home care Home care agency staff will keep a written record of the care that has been given to you, with notes made about any changes in your health, as well as any incidents that have happened.

Paying for a home care agency It’s important to know the cost of home care and you should always be provided with a clear idea of costs for home care agency services. In most cases, agencies will charge different rates for home care on weekday, evenings and weekends. There is also often a higher rate

on Bank Holidays. Remember to ask if there will be any additional costs that you need to know about. Direct Payments can also be used for employing a ‘personal assistant’ or arranging care from a private agency. Your local Social Services team will be able to advise you further. There are many benefits to Direct Payments – they allow a greater level of flexibility and freedom for the person who needs the care and support. How can Bluebird Care Help? Direct Payments allow such a variety of choice that in some cases the chosen personal assistant may even be someone that the person already knows, or a relative who does not live with them. Greater choice, however, may come with greater employment responsibility. Social Services departments provide care managers or advocates to help someone recruit a personal assistant. Bluebird Care can assist people who receive a Direct Payment, either by using it to purchase your care and support directly from Bluebird Care.

Check what you are being charged All costs should be written into the contract between you and the agency and you should be invoiced at regular intervals for the previous months’ service. In most cases, the home care agency will keep timesheets that you will need to sign. Always check that they have logged the correct length of visits. It may seem easier to sign only once a week but if you do this you may be charged the incorrect amount and it will prove difficult to prove otherwise.

Call our professional team on 01452 414952 Our staff

Contact us

Our staff are caring, trained to give medication and police checked.

Visit us online at Call our professional team on 01452 414952


What we offer

Bluebird Care offers a realistic cost effective alternative to residential care. With familiar friends, relatives and possessions around, Bluebird Care ‘just happens’

We offer everything from personal care to shopping, cleaning or social visits. In fact everything you need to stay in the comfort of your own home. Bluebird Care, Suite 4 Westgate House, The Island, Gloucester GL1 2RU.


Christmas Menu now available


The Edgemoor Inn

Fantastic views over the Painswick Valley & surrounding countryside The Edgemoor Inn is in the village of Edge, overlooking the beautiful, picturesque Painswick Valley. The late 19th century Inn, constructed from Cotswold stone, has picture style windows and is well known for its pretty panoramic views. Our property boasts an extensive terraced patio overlooking Painswick & surrounding countryside. Local Produce Edgemoor Inn sources as much fresh meat, fish & vegetables from local suppliers. Home Cooked Meals & Real Ales An extensive range of home cooked meals and daily specials are served each day lunchtime and evening. Vegetarian menus are always available. We serve the finest selection of local real ales from Uley, Wickwar and Stroud. The Edgemoor Inn offers the very best in traditional Cotswold pub and restaurant dining - a warm welcome in delightful surroundings with well-presented homecooked food. This is a combination that’s hard to beat.

• Fresh cooked food & local real ales served lunch & evening • Extensive patio area • Large dining room with a light and modern feel

Sample Menu Our menu uses the finest locally sourced ingredients. Here is a selection from the menu.

Appetisers Marinated olives, feta cheese & dipping oil with warm ciabatta - £3.50 Mixed olives - £2.50 Garlic bread - £2.95 Garlic bread with cheese and bacon £3.95

Starters Homemade soup of the day served with honey & seed bread roll - £4.95 Teriyaki marinated crispy belly pork £6.00 Spicy chicken with avocado salsa & sour cream - £6.50

Smoked mackerel pate with red onion chutney & toast - £6.00 Prawn & crayfish salad, marie rose sauce - £6.50 Stuffed mushroom with almond & vegetable crumb, tomato & pesto sauce - £6.00

Main Meals Grilled lamb’s liver, bacon & creamy mash with onion gravy - £10.50 Old spot beer battered haddock with chips, peas and homemade tartare sauce - £11.50 Beef medallions with sauté potatoes, mushrooms, wilted spinach & shallot gravy - £15.50 Homemade steak pie with chips & peas - £10.50 Fillet steak, served with onion rings, mushrooms, chips & peas - £23.00

Edge | Near Stroud | Gloucestershire GL6 6ND Tel: 01452 813576 email: Visit for full menu and more details

Cheltenham & Gloucester issue 20  

Local magazine for the over 50s

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