aboutfram issue 25

Page 1

about fram

Issue Twenty Sixteen five Look no further than aboutfram, the local magazine that packs a Suffolk punch!


D E S I G N | B U I L D | R E N O VAT E “It has been a genuine pleasure to work with you all. The quality of the work and your support throughout, has been excellent. We are absolutely delighted with the results, and everyone who visits comments on how impressive it all looks”

Nominated for three LABC Awards • Best Construction Company 2020 • Best New Build 2020 • Best Extension 2020

Unit 1, Quayside, Woodbridge IP12 1BN | Call 01394 610526 | www.chapelproperties.co.uk

contents who’s about out & about 4


about style about you



4 Unlocking the truth

24 about town

Nick Hulme lets us in on his lockdown secrets

We bring you the latest news about town

6 Out and about

26 Born to be wild

A round up of local events

An innovative rebirding project helping to restore the vibrancy of our natural world

10 Fashion fix Summer just got hotter with these fabulous styles

12 Easy does it Keep cool and look fabulous with these beauty must-haves

14 Sheer delight! Take a peek inside The Scrumpy Shepherd, the ultimate romantic retreat

20 Get the look Beautiful interiors for a fresh look - inside and out

23 Competition time Win a mid-week stay for two at The Scrumpy Shepherd


32 A lasting impression Learning the intricacies of handcrafted tiles at Smoke & Fire

36 Contain yourself Go potty in the garden with the best container plants for summer

40 about taste Living la vida locavore

42 Chicken with cucumber, mustard and dill A deliciously light, summery dish, perfect for al fresco dining with friends

46 Sign after sign An easy walk that weaves its way along the River Deben, from Brandeston to Cretingham and back

about interiors

about town about the land

about design about gardens

about food about taste round & about


just the three of us... about us In issue 25 of aboutfram, we ease into summer with delights for your home, wardrobe and garden, explore romantic retreats, make an impression at a tile factory, and even go a little wild in the country. Editorial Kathy Churchill Sales Sarah Clarke

aboutmedia info@aboutmedia.co.uk 01728 666352 www.aboutmedia.co.uk

Design Ferrar Design kerry@ferrar.co.uk

07884 433385 www.ferrar.co.uk

a bit about them... Sadie Windscheffel-Clarke A talented wedding and commercial photographer and owner of Big Fish Photography. bigfishphotography.com M: 07950 208887 abouttheland pg 26 aboutdesign pg 32

Due to the current situation we would like to thank all those who supplied photographs for the editorial pages, and also our advertisers for their continued support.

If you would like to sign up to the weekly aboutfram e-newsletter, please subscribe at www.aboutmedia/aboutfram 2


ghts ing i n Two nchant ut ne sH in a pherd She e 23



Landscape Design and Construction Contractors


T: 01728 638372

M: 07785966221

www.rogergladwell.co.uk 3

who’s about

Unlocking the truth Neighbour, friend and fellow pantomime diva, Nick Hulme, also happens to be the chief executive of the East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust (ESNEFT). I catch up with him over a glass of wine to see how he, and the region, coped during lockdown. What kept you sane during lockdown? “Exercise. I have what I call my decompress walk that I try to do with my dog Stanley every evening when I get back from work. I relish routine, so this circuit from Kettleburgh, up to Hoo Church and then back across the low meadows at Brandeston has been so important to my mental health. I also work out every morning. Trust me, if I didn’t, after sitting at my desk for 8 hours every day, I would be 23 stone!” 4

How do you feel Ipswich Hospital coped? “We planned for the worst and hoped for the best. We increased our ITU beds from 25 to 100 and trained an extra 250 nurses. Luckily, although we had a few critical nights, we only ever needed 25 beds, even at the height of the pandemic. The staff have been incredible, quickly adapting to working in new teams and learning new skills.”

who’s about

Are you ready for a second spike? “We are already gearing up for winter in terms of managing the availability of beds and will use our knowledge and experience from the spring to ensure we are fully prepared. Moving forward, our plan is for some of the new measures such as video and telephone consultancy, which have proven to be incredibly effective, to become standard practice.” What did you miss most during lockdown? “A haircut! Did you see my hair? I looked like a cross between Art Garfunkel, Leo Sayer and Krusty the Clown from the Simpsons. They had a vote at work to see if my new lockdown locks were cute or creepy. Creepy won! I also missed spontaneity. Having the choice to stop off at the Easton White Horse for a pint or jumping on a train to visit my kids in London at the weekend. That has been quite hard.” When do you think we will have a vaccine? “The latest results have been very encouraging. It is early days, but we are hopeful of a vaccine by Christmas. However, we are not relying on this. The vaccination programme will take a few months to roll out as we will need to prioritise the more vulnerable groups.”

Do you think people are still worried about visiting their Doctor/the hospital? “Definitely, and they shouldn’t be. The Covid wards are completely separate from the mainstream wards and every measure has been in put in place to ensure patients’ safety. We have seen an 80% decrease in take-up of appointments for patients referred by their GP which is so frustrating. Some of these people really do need treatment and sadly we have already had a few tragic cases where a delay has meant it has been too late for us to make a difference.” What advice can you offer moving forward? “Keep active, get your haircut and most importantly, if you do find a lump, have a pain somewhere or feel unwell, please see your doctor or come to A&E. Early diagnosis is key to us being able to treat you successfully.” Well said Nick, and resisting the temptation to ask, in true pantomime style, if the pandemic is ‘behind him’, I thank him for his time and wave as he wanders back across the fields, Stanley by his side, to ready himself for another day on the frontline.


out & about



Until 29th Aug Innovative Forms An exhibition celebrating John Skelton's innovative approach to Alphabet and lettering design. Lettering Arts Trust, Snape Maltings

23rd-19th Aug Bois Jolie – Beautiful Wood A display of beautiful tables, bowls and chairs, made locally from beautiful English woods. The Quay Gallery, Snape Maltings

Until 31st Aug Alde Valley Spring Festival Online exhibition of paintings, sculptures and wood-craft. Appointments can be arranged. www.

22nd-28th Embellish Featuring a wide selection of Hannah Aria’s striking resin paintings including abstracts inspired by the local landscape. Carousel Gallery, Framlingham

31st-2nd Aug Primadonna Online Festival A literary festival specifically created to promote writing by women.



6th-12th Impressed A beautiful exhibition from three Fine Art Printmakers. The Garage Gallery, Aldeburgh


1st Farmers’ Market High quality local produce. Snape Maltings

7th-26th Suffolk Craft Society Pop-up Markets Changing displays of ceramics, printmaking, jewellery, textiles and more. 10am-5pm daily (not Thurs). Peter Pears Gallery, Aldeburgh 14th-15th Outdoor Cinema – Rocketman/Le Mans Bring a car-full for this fabulous outdoor experience. 6.30pm at Helmingham Hall 22nd-23rd Suffolk Country Show Food, fashion, crafts and family fun. Framlingham College www.classicfestivals.co.uk

out & about

September 22nd Theatre on the Coast A series of virtual productions for you to enjoy at home. www. mtproductions.co.uk/theatreon-the-coast-southwold/

27th-2nd Sept Exhibition by Ben Wardle A selection of Suffolk landscapes by local artist Ben Wardle. The Garage Gallery, Aldeburgh

4th The Canada Boys Play based on a true story about ambition, love, family and mustard! The Cut, Halesworth

10th-16th A certain stillness An exhibition of recent work by acclaimed artist Penny German. The Garage Gallery, Aldeburgh

5th Farmers’ Market High quality local produce. Snape Maltings

18th-14th Nov New Beginnings An exhibition featuring the work of a younger generation of letter carvers. Lettering Arts Trust, Snape Maltings

Old Jet Market Open air market with jumble, vintage, homewares, clothing, jewellery and vinyl. 10am-2pm. Bentwaters Park

20th Autumn Plant Fair Huge selection of plants and garden accessories. 10am-4pm Helmingham Hall

25th Mary’s Hand A new music drama about the life and reign of Queen Mary I performed by solo mezzo and chamber ensemble. 7.30pm Aldeburgh Church Red House Recital 1 Simon Callaghan gives a lecture/recital on 20th century piano music. The Red House, Aldeburgh

Correct at time of going to press



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about style




Summer just got hotter with these fabulous styles 1. Sage leaf silver earrings Suffolk Silversmith @ Hart Healing Kitchen £65 2. Pretty weekend dress Ruby Tyger £49 3. Selection of semi-precious rings Sarah Cole Jewellery

4. Floral waxed cotton rucksacks Vandertas £139 5. Beautiful summer styles Samphire @ Snape Maltings 6. Gorgeous gold dot shirt Part Two @ Phoebe & Flo £79

6 10



7. Floral maxi skirt £25 Vera Moda cream top £20 denim jacket £32 Out and About Country Fashion 8. Holiday must-haves Wandering Bee Bag £30/Kaftan £55

about style

9. Cute linen dungarees Ruby Tyger £32.50


10 11 8

0. Gumbies cork 1 flip flops Ruby and the Angel £29.95 11. Pair of Bollox boxers Ruby and the Angel £22.50 12. Summer styles Pom, indi & cold and Just @ Phoebe & Flo



Stockists on page 48 11

about you

Easy does it Here comes the sun Loggique has just launched a delicious new summer scent, Yuzu (also known as Japanese Grapefruit). Blended with Neroli, Bergamot and Lilac, it is ‘sunshine in a bottle’ and comes as a natural wax candle, diffuser and room spray, as well as body wash, moisturiser, shampoo and conditioner. Available online at loggique.com or from Vanil in Woodbridge


From the Hart

Keep your cool this summer with the Magicool Plus range of ingenious sprays. Using breakthrough technology, these safe to use, non-steroid sprays instantly cool and soothe inflamed sun-stressed or itchy skin. Choose from Prickly Heat Spray, Itchy Skin Spray or Sunburn Cooling Spray.

Recently opened in Framlingham, Hart Healing Kitchen creates eco-friendly, minimal plastic, coconut and rapeseed wax candles, soaps, crystals, bath salts and cosmetics; all lovingly handmade in Suffolk. Its ethos is to pamper and heal the needs of your body and mind whilst proving that deliciously scented, high quality treats can be completely eco conscious, sustainable, and affordable.

Available from Framlingham Pharmacy

Luscious locks New for 2020 is Aveda’s Nutriplenish. Vegan and silcone-free, this intensely hydrating, replenishing collection is formulated with omega-5-rich organic pomegranate oil for lush, visibly healthy, manageable hair. Nutrient powered hydration at your root tips! Available from Carley Hill Hair









A family run business based in the beautiful market town of Woodbridge, we are retailers of quality Sterling Silver, precious & semi precious gem stone Jewellery

Exhibitions Public & Private Commissions Lettering Courses Aug 8th: Making your own Illustrated Journal Sept 5th: Mapping your World Sept 19th: Brush Lettering on Pebbles The Lettering Arts Trust’s shop sells beautiful original artworks, created and hand carved by many of the UK's leading exponents of stone letter carving, as well as ‘one-of-a-kind’ gifts to suit all ages or occasions.




53A The Thoroughfare, Woodbridge Telephone: 01394 382114 Email: Silversunjewellery@gmail.com Open: Monday - Saturday: 10:00am (ish) – 5:00pm (ish) Sundays: Please phone in advance

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Spiral Gallery & jewellery workshop

Discover beautiful Art, Craft and Jewellery including landscapes by Alfie Carpenter Handmade Ceramics and Glass Affordable Handmade Gifts Contemporary Jewellery Spiral Gallery features distinctive jewellery by expert jeweller, Michael Carpenter. Michael also offers a service to re-style and re-imagine old jewellery, create commissions and repair loved pieces 46 High St, Debenham, IP14 6QW - Open Tues to Sat 10 - 5 - www.spiralgallery.co.uk - 07539 317 986


about interiors

Sheer delight!


about interiors

Nestled in the Suffolk countryside, beneath the boughs of an ancient apple tree and with views across wildflower meadows, The Scrumpy Shepherd is an impossibly romantic hideaway. Owned by Daniel and Sarah Norman, this handcrafted shepherd’s hut is available to rent, so I pop over to peek inside before the next guests arrive. Daniel and Sarah commissioned the hut three years ago from local firm, The Suffolk Hutmakers, after deciding that they wanted to share their beautiful slice of Suffolk with others. Daniel’s family have farmed this unspoilt stretch of the Deben Valley for five generations, and here you can still find small paddocks surrounded by thick hedges dotted with majestic oaks, luscious water meadows that dip down to the riverbanks and wooded copses where the tawny owls make their roosts. “We wanted to create something unique, a really special place where couples could come and escape

the chaos of everyday life. We spent ages looking for the perfect location, randomly sitting in shady corners to check out the view or walking the dogs in the evening to hunt down the best sunset, but eventually we were both drawn to the orchard. It just felt right, a secret spot where you can tuck yourself away.” To reach The Scrumpy Shepherd, Sarah and I head off along a cut path that weaves its way evocatively through the long grass to a wooden 5-bar gate. The hut sits squarely to one end of the orchard and Sarah explains 15

about interiors

that they had to thin out the old trees and clear back all the brambles and scrub, but it is lovely to see that they have also replanted a mix of apple and cherry trees so that future generations will still be able to enjoy the delights of the wonderful spring blossom. Once she knew where the hut was going, Sarah worked closely with The Suffolk Hutmakers to ensure every detail of the design was correct, from the height of the bed to the bespoke copper piping used in the bathroom. “They were brilliant, building everything to our exact requirements and helping us source high quality fixtures such as the tiny wood burning stove and the fabulous mason jar and faucet lights above the kitchen units.� The corrugated exterior is painted a restful blue grey, and to both corners old milk


churns, vintage watering cans and iron planters brim with cottage garden favourites. Wooden stairs lead up to a central stable door and inside the beautifully styled interior is surprisingly spacious. A double cabin bed is perfectly positioned to allow guests a morning view of the wildflower meadow and is dressed in crisp linen, plumped feather cushions and a woollen blanket for cosy evenings. To the centre there is an oak-topped kitchen unit, complete with butler sink, mini fridge and electric hob, and the bespoke dresser above is home to a pretty collection of Emma Bridgewater crockery. A fold-out table allows guests to eat in, warming themselves by the gorgeously compact woodburning stove, and hidden away to one end is the small en-suite shower room.

about interiors

Sarah and Daniel have created the most wonderful boutique space, a deliciously romantic retreat that is both authentic and luxurious. “We want guests to feel pampered so provide all the usual luxuries, but also welcome them with a home baked cherry and walnut cake, freshly laid eggs from the farm and local treats such as Pump Street chocolate or Stokes sauces.” Guests also have the use of a BBQ, a fire pit, and a table and bench that Daniel fashioned from the wheels of an old binder harvester and a huge slab of oak. Lights are strung through the trees and it is easy to imagine the wonder of guests as they cuddle up under Suffolk’s famous star-studded skies. And, if you can bear to drag yourself away, just a twenty-minute stroll will find you at either the Cretingham Bell or The Queen at Brandeston, where a refreshing pint awaits.

Back at the farm we find Daniel busy in the barn, this time turning a pony trailer into an ingenious kitchen unit! Sarah smiles at my questioning look and takes me across to another meadow where we find a vintage Bowtop gypsy wagon that is all set to become their next romantic retreat. Commanding sweeping views across the cornfields to Monewden Church, it is very decorative, with beautifully engraved woodwork, gold leaf detailing and etched mirrors, and Sarah hopes that guests will cook on a tripod over an open fire. As we wander back, she chats excitedly about designing wooden platforms for sundowners and hidden riverside picnic spots, and I can totally understand why couples are flocking to this idyllic corner of Suffolk. www.thescrumpyshepherd.co.uk 17

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1. Kadai Firebowl Snape Maltings from £135 2. Vintage finds the-barn.co 3. White dovecote in da cottage £115

about interiors

4. London Fire Nozzle Light George Juniper £320


5. Art deco-inspired swan chaise The Little Upholsterer £1800


Get the look 6. Weaver Green blankets Ruby and the Angel £45 7. Gorgeous cartridge pleat curtains Natalie Canning 8. Scandi-inspired interiors Vanil 9. Baskets galore Ruby Tyger From £15.95




6 20

about interiors


8 10. Fabulous interior ideas Collated 11. Antique treasures Dix-Sept 12. Smashing mirror selection Marlesford Mill From £20 13. Refillable essential oil candle Hart Healing Kitchen £43/refill £33 14. Floral bench cushions Ruby Tyger £26





14 Stockists on page 48

11 21


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Life | Land | Business

Whatever life brings we’re always here for you 22

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Rom Mid antic Cos -we retr ea ek y BBQwood stay t & fi burn re p er it

Win a mid-week overnight stay in The Scrumpy Shepherd, a luxurious shepherd’s hut nestled in an ancient orchard in rural Suffolk

We are delighted to offer you the chance to win a wonderfully romantic getaway for two in a handcrafted shepherd’s hut. The Scrumpy Shepherd is located in a private orchard amongst wildflower meadows in the heart of the Deben Valley. The stylish interior offers the luxury of a small boutique hotel, with a double bed, bespoke oak kitchen, wood burning stove and fabulous en-suite shower room. A barbeque allows you to enjoy cooking under the stars, or stroll to one of the local pubs for supper and then come back to snuggle by the firepit, toasting marshmallows and watching the Suffolk sky at night. www.thescrumpyshepherd.co.uk (To read more see our article on page 14)

For your chance of winning this fabulous prize, please answer the following question correctly: Q: Where is The Scrumpy Shepherd located? Send your answer to prize@aboutfram. com quoting Scrumpy in the subject header. The competition closes at 23.59 hours on 31st August 2020. Terms and conditions The stay is for a mid-week break to be taken in Sept, Oct, or Nov 2020. Scrumpy Shepherd T&Cs also apply - see website. Entrants must be aged 18 or over. The prize is non-transferable and there is no cash alternative. By entering this competition, you give your consent for your email address to be added to our aboutfram database. Your email address will not be shared with any other companies apart from The Scrumpy Shepherd. Please indicate in your email if you do not wish to give your consent to be contacted by either aboutfram or The Scrumpy Shepherd and we will delete your email address from our records. The winner will be randomly selected from all entries submitted.


about town

Going the extra mile

Glemham Hall has been recognised as going the ‘extra mile’ for their couples during the pandemic, having had to manage countless postponements, all whilst furloughing 70% of their staff and managing the same significant overheads. Olivia Riddiford, founder of the campaign, “Glemham Hall has gone above and beyond for their clients by offering postponement & even back-up dates, they’ve maintained their clients’ excitement with thoughtful, considerate posts on social media and delivered beautiful personalised cards on days when couples should have been holding their wedding.” Donna Stockley, Events Manager,“We are thrilled to have been recognised as an ‘extra mile’ venue. Our clients mean the world to us and we are so glad to have been able to support them during this unusual time.” www.glemhamhall.co.uk

Con Club reopens its doors as 10 Church St… …with The Common Room cafe due to open in early August and the exhibition space having its first show of work mid-August. FAYAP (Framlingham Area Youth Action Partnership) aims to take occupancy in the old saloon bar in early September and most of the studios have potential residents: a painter, sculptor, jeweller, photographer, graphic designer, web designer and art therapist amongst them. All in all, a gentle opening, but hopefully the there will be a party in the not too distant future. Watch this space. www.instagram.com/exconclub/ 24

Ripening in old age This year Fram Farmers are proud to be celebrating their 60th anniversary, one of the few true farmer-owned cooperatives to have reached this milestone.

Curtain call Last summer, Natalie Canning, owner of Eye based company Natalie Canning Interiors, was contacted ‘out of the blue’ by set decorator, Tanya Bowd – winner of the Royal Television Society Awards for ‘Victoria’ with Helen Mirren – to create elaborate curtains, pelmets and bed canopies for a C18 Russian Palace film set for ‘The Great’, with Elle Fanning as Catherine the Great. As Natalie says, “The next few months were a complete whirlwind with technical drawings, ever-changing measurements and last-minute extras the order of the day. The process was an education into a whole new world and although it took a few weeks to recover, I would love to do something like that again.”

about about interiors town

In 1960, a group of 23 farming founders had the foresight to recognise the benefits that farmers could achieve by pooling their purchasing power. Six decades later, Fram Farmers represents almost 1400 farming businesses across the UK and its original concept is even more relevant, with numbers joining the co-op growing, year on year, as the ‘landscape’ within the farming industry continues to evolve.


Keeping it in the family Having been through the toughest three months in its 28-year history, Ufford Park Hotel, Golf and Spa has been named Family Business of the Year at a virtual ceremony hosted at the Family Business United Awards 2020. Tarnia Robertson, Managing Director and former pupil at Framlingham College, said the award was a huge boost at a time when they needed it most. “The last three months have been the toughest we have ever experienced. This is the first time in the last three decades that we have had to stop trading and close the doors to customers and members.” www.uffordpark.co.uk

Photo credit Ruth Leach


about the land

Born to be wild


about the land

Back in March, we visited some exciting rewilding projects that are closely intertwined with the theme of this year’s Alde Valley Spring Festival. Due to lockdown, the festival has been extended until the end of August, going online with a virtual exhibition, but it is amazing to see how swiftly the rewilding has become a reality. Jason Gathorne-Hardy, founder of the festival and custodian of White House Farm, Great Glemham, has his roots deeply embedded in the soil of the Upper Alde, and for generations his family have been at the forefront of rural conservation in Suffolk. His grandfather was a founding member of the Wildlife Trust and Jason’s blood runs thick with this same love of nature and passion for preservation. Back in 2009, he developed a farm enrichment plan and entered his 220 acres into a 10-year Higher Level Stewardship scheme that included

projects such as restoring and expanding hedgerows, restoring ditches and dykes, managing low input grassland and planting new woodland and winter bird seed patches. The farm has always been at the heart of the Spring Festival and many visitors will be familiar with these projects, witnessing first-hand the positive impact they are having on the natural environment. This year, Jason decided that the focus of the festival should be on resident and visiting birdlife, and the theme for artists 27

about the land

taking part was ‘On a Turning Wing - A Celebration of Birds, Flight and Migration’. His aim was to start re-establishing important ecosystems on the farm that will aid the recovery of pinnacle species such as nightingale, snipe, lapwing and hobby. When I visited in March, the dining room table was strewn with inspiration: collected feathers; a nest of leaves; discarded antlers; charcoal sketches and piles of books bearing titles such as ‘The Tranquil Gardener’, ‘The Seabird’s Cry’ and ‘Miraculous Abundance’; important passages marked by a downturned page or a sprig of pressed cherry blossom. Jason has also followed with interest the progress of the impressive rewilding projects at the Knepp Estate, West Sussex, where the turtle dove has made a remarkable comeback in a dramatically short space 28

of time, and he is part of the Wildeast pledge to restore nature across East Anglia on a grand scale. At White House Farm, Jason and his team has started on three rebirding projects to enrich and restore the local habitats. The first of these is the creation of a series of lakes in his water meadows above the River Alde. Initial testing two years ago showed that the land would retain water, and after taking advice from the Suffolk Wildlife Trust, Natural England and the Environment Agency, Dave Rose and his digger got to work. Back in early spring, the soil was freshly turned, uncovering a layer of peat about a foot below the surface that Jason hoped would act as sponge and help keep the water levels high. So far this has indeed been the case, with water weeds and reedbeds starting to take hold

about the land

and moorhen, herons, swallows and ducks visiting – even a plover putting in an appearance - and it would be amazing to see white egrets and spoonbills feeding along the shallows one day. The second project was to clear a 1.5 acre site within part of the woodland to allow sunlight in. Evidence suggests that closed canopy woodland is not as beneficial for the ecosystem as having a series of small clearings, and Jason hopes that the work, managed by Hunts Tree Surgery, will see a rise in the diversity of bird species. The last project is a wildflower enrichment programme that Jason has worked on with advice from Charlie and Jack Steed. Teasel, yarrow and oxeye daisy seedlings were transplanted by hand from other parts of the farm, hazels sticks being used to mark key species, but by next year I suspect

these will be lost amongst the grasses, billowing cow parsley and an abundance of wildflowers, so important for our insects and birdlife. Every spring Jason opens his farm gates to celebrate the importance of food, farming and the landscape, and the artwork at this year’s festival is a wonderful reflection of his vision for recovery and restored vibrancy. These may be unusual times but perhaps, now more than ever, we can finally understand the importance of nature. I feel we are on the brink of a pioneering wildlife revolution, and along with Jason, believe that now is the time to make a commitment to restore the balance‌ before it is too late. www.aldevalleyspringfestival.co.uk The Festival Exhibition and Open Studios can be viewed online and visitors are welcome by appointment until the end of August. 29

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about design

A lasting impression


about design

Smoke & Fire has been perfecting the process of crafting handmade tiles for over twenty years. We met up with the founder Mark Aldridge and his son Boris at their workshop in Darsham to learn more about the intricacies of the family business. Based on the A12 just opposite Darsham Railway Station, the workshop/salesroom at Smoke & Fire was originally an old granary and the blackened exterior gives few clues as to the treasures that lie within. Mark set up the company in 2000 after moving to Suffolk from Lincolnshire, and he now runs the business alongside his son Boris, an established contemporary ceramist, artist and musician. Having previously studied Fine Art, setting up his own handmade tile company was a new commercial venture for Mark, but he was drawn to the idea of being able to create unique tiles, decorated with his own,

hand drawn paintings and designs, and to experiment with size, patterns, colour and glaze. The showroom upstairs is a large light-filled space that has been used to great effect to allow Mark and Boris to show off the full extent of their bespoke range. Sections of the room are decorated with different examples of the artisan tiles: some glazed; others textured and embedded with glass or inlaid with gold leaf. Geometric patterns square up to delicately painted birds, huge mosaic panels with detailed Islamic designs counter the simplicity of a single cream tile


about design

imprinted with just a pair of glazed dots, and in a corner a shoal of little black fish dance amongst their ceramic waves. The work is beautiful and highly skilled, and I love the individuality of the designs, especially those using mixed media where the glass from old wine bottles creates a myriad of reflective colour. Down in the workshop, Mark explains the process they use for the majority of their tiles. The clay comes from Stoke-on-Trent, famous for its pottery and the quality of the local clay, and this raw material is initially put through a pug mill which squeezes out any air bubbles and rolls the clay into blocks. These are then cut to the required shape and size and the tiles are left to dry naturally on wooden boards. At this stage they can also be imprinted with any specific designs and it is fun to see that 34

Mark and his team have used some ingenious objects to leave their impressions. Who knew that when pressed into clay an old-fashioned meat mallet could create such wonderful speckling, or the end of a hosepipe such fabulous concentric circles, and that the pattern left behind by a simple button could look so effortlessly contemporary? Next comes the messy part – glazing the tiles. The glaze is mixed by hand according to secret family recipes using ingredients such as china clay, zinc oxide, rutile, cobalt and feldspar, each one having a differing quality that effects the tone, opacity and warmth of the final colour. The glaze is sprayed onto the tiles by hand in a specialised spraying booth and they are then fired in a gas kiln at temperatures of up to 1240°C. Once they have cooled, the

about design

delicate hand painted detail is added and a second glaze applied before they are put back in the kiln for a second time. This process, known as biscuit firing, gives them a rich patina and each one will have tonal variations and undulations that can only be found in a true artisan handmade tile. Boris has perfected this technique and specialises in creating exquisitely decorated tiles inspired by the Persian lusterware of the 13th century. They are incredibly detailed and often painted with liquid gold, giving the surface with an extraordinary lustre, or inscribed with lyrics from folk songs he himself has written, which instil within them a wonderful sense of spirituality. Boris has had solo exhibitions in Suffolk and London, and his intricate hand carved designs are now highly collectable. His work is currently

represented by the prestigious Amir Mohtashemi gallery on Kensington Church Street, and a collection of his songs, whose lyrics are rooted in the coastal landscape of Suffolk, are for sale via the Alde Valley Spring Festival. Running a family business can be tricky, but after visiting Smoke & Fire it is so rewarding to see one that continues to evolve and change with the times. Mark and Boris clearly have huge respect for each other’s work, the delicately hand painted wading birds perfectly in harmony with the elaborate shimmering lusterware, and both have certainly made a lasting impression on me. www.smokeandfire.co.uk


about gardens

Contain yourself!


about gardens

I am still learning the art of having a garden that flowers effortlessly all year round. Once the night-scented stocks, aquilegia, marguerites and delphiniums have put on their magnificent springtime show there is a definite lull. So this year, I am planting some containers to dot about the garden for a splash of colour and to have near seating areas for some scented pizazz. You can have lots of fun with colour, texture and fragrance and can either go for impact with a pot bursting with the same variety, or mix things up and have a jumble of different plants. Some of the best container plants will allow you to have beautiful blooms all summer and even into early autumn – just keep them well-watered and deadhead occasionally. Have fun with your combinations and go a little potty this summer!

Here are a few favourites: Verbena: Clusters of pretty flowers that come in so many different colours and varieties you may find it hard to choose, but White Blush, Sissinghurst and Homestead Purple make a fabulous combination. Cosmos: Bright and breezy, these happy plants bring cheer wherever they go. Try Sonata in white or pink and Antiquity. Pelargonium: The deliciously scented leaves of varieties such as Attar of Roses, Pink Capitatum and Sweet Mimosa will have you brushing past daily. Gaura: Graceful stems topped with white or pink starry flowers that dance in the breeze like whirling butterflies - just superb. Petunia: Hard to beat, the old-fashioned petunia is still packing a lively punch and is ideal for mixing in with taller planting to give layers of riotous colour. 37

about gardens

Summer lovin’ During the grip of lockdown many of us have spent longer in the garden then usual and hopefully this productivity has paid off, with weed-free borders, neat edges, and new planting schemes or raised beds. The early July rain will certainly have helped get things moving so as we head into summer there is still plenty to keep your green fingers busy. The roses this July have been spectacular, providing a gorgeously fragrant display in your borders and leaving a blanket of confetti as they start to fade. To lengthen their season deadheading is a must, and you can also cut back suckers and any canes that are growing inwards to let the light in and air to circulate. Don’t forget to pick a blousy sprig or two for your kitchen so you can enjoy their heady scent.

Tales from the potting shed 38

July Cut back early perennials Deadhead roses Sow winter veg crops

As we ease into August, water your pots, mow the lawn weekly, cut back summerflowering shrubs such as lavender once they have finished flowering and take a few cuttings of your new favourites to look forward to next year. Enjoy the bounty that your veggie plot brings this month: lettuce, tomatoes, cucumber, runner beans, even the first autumn cauliflower, and cook up a summer feast for friends and family. September rolls in with its misty mornings and gentle dappled afternoons. Colours start to mellow, and the stage cleared for dahlias, dramatic balls of vibrancy that are best planted together for impact. Beds and borders take on the rusty hues of chrysanthemum, spirits are lifted by the glorious deep orange of crocosmia, and drifts of ornamental grasses such as ‘Stipa gigantea’ glow in the autumn sun.

August Keep bird baths topped up Trim lavenders into neat mounds Take cuttings of tender perennials

September Feed your lawn Divide herbaceous perennials Plant spring bulbs

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about taste

Living La Vida Locavore

Hail Fellows, well met Fellows Farm invites you to its first ‘Field to Plate’ wood fired dinners this September: 5th & 19th. Fellows Farm is an organically certified, emerging market garden, vineyard & specialist arable farm, only a few miles from Framlingham. The farm is owned by Ben MacKinnon, a Suffolk native and founder of e5 bakehouse, an artisan bakery in East London, which he now supplies with produce from the farm. Wanting to share it with a broader audience, Ben has teamed up with the chef Nicola Hordern – Ballymaloe, Quo Vardis, Darsham Nurseries – and on two nights this September, Nicola will prepare ‘fresh from the field’ produce over wood fire, supported by head gardener and former chef, Lughan Carr. Tickets are £40pp which includes an aperitif and 5 course set menu, BYOB. Email Ben at benmac@e5bakehouse.com 40

Birthday Honours go… …To The Lighthouse, which celebrates a significant milestone this year – its 25th birthday. The doors were first opened in 1995 by Sara Fox and Peter Hill who then passed on the mantel to Sam Hayes, who grew into the restaurant trade under their careful mentoring; becoming manager before taking full possession in 2015. The core values are still the same as they always have been, welcoming customers through the door with a friendly smile to make them feel at home and serving delicious food complemented by an excellent wine list. A fine institution and very much part of the fabric of Aldeburgh, we

wish Sam and his wife, Maxine, many happy years to come, serving their loyal following and new customers alike at their beacon on the High Street. …and to Emmett’s, which celebrates its 200th birthday this year. The store in Peasenhall has been trading since 1820 and remained in the same family until it was bought by the now owner, Mark Thomas, in 2000. “It was like stepping back in time as so little had changed”, says Mark when he first took it on, “You could still buy individual cigarettes over the counter, and no one paid for anything as we had over 800 cash accounts.”

Emmett’s is now one of only two producers who make naturally cured bacon, with all of the smoking and curing still taking place in the about smokehouse at the taste bottom of the garden. Along with its sweet pickled hams, Emmett’s bacon earned a Royal Warrant back in 1970, but since then, Mark has added a fabulous range of high class produce, personally chosen by him for its provenance and quality, from local producers and much further afield. Pop in at your peril as you may come out with a lot more than your bargained for!

In the can In launching their brand-new venture just weeks before lockdown, the team at Niche Cocktails founded by Suffolk lad, Bob Scott, inadvertently found themselves having to rethink their sales strategy. Having intended to focus its target at the hospitality arena, this Melton based company – the first in the UK to produce canned shots – was quick to pivot its planning and develop an online shop, selling its cocktails direct to the thirsty consumer. Since March, the team has been dispatching Blood Orange Old Fashioned, Manuka Honey Whisky Sour, and Matcha Mojito, to hundreds of homes and has since added Passion Fruit Daiquiri to the range. To order yours, visit www.nichecocktails.co.uk


about taste

Chicken with cucumber, mustard & dill A glut of cucumbers? Here’s a deliciously light, summery way to make use of them as a surprise ingredient in this chicken dish, with foraged or homegrown dill playing an indispensable third fiddle. Feeds 8-10 Ingredients 12 chicken joints – ideally a mixture 40g unsalted butter 100ml dry vermouth 600ml chicken stock, ideally homemade 1 large or 2 small cucumbers c. 400g 175g full fat crème fraiche 3 tsp grain mustard – more to taste Juice of ½ lemon – more to taste c. 15g freshly chopped dill 1 tsp plain flour 42

Method Season the chicken pieces with salt & pepper. Using a broad, heavy-bottomed pan, melt 25g of the butter before lightly browning the chicken over a medium heat. Sprinkle over the flour, a quick turn in the pan, then cook for 1 min before throwing in the vermouth. Reduce by twothirds. Add the stock and bring to the boil before immediately turning down the heat so it gently sputters. Cover and leave to cook for c. 40 mins. Take the ends off the cucumber(s) and peel. Slice in half lengthways, scoop out the seeds with a teaspoon and cut into slices the thickness of a £1 coin. Set aside. To ensure that the chicken is cooked, pierce the largest piece to check that the juices run clear

before taking out. Wrap in foil to keep warm. Now reduce the sauce by half, at which point it should turn slightly syrupy. Add the crème fraiche, mustard and half the lemon juice and let it bubble away until the mixture has the consistency of single cream. Melt the rest of the butter in a frying pan and quickly cook the cucumber slices until tender, not floppy, and tinged with gold in places. Season. Put the chicken, cucumber and any resting juices into the sauce and warm through, then add the dill. At this point, taste again as it may need more lemon, mustard or seasoning. Delicious served with new potatoes that have been seasoned and baked for c.1hr along with a selection of garden herbs in a tightly wrapped foil parcel, liberally dotted with butter.

EMMETT’S OF PEASENHALL THE BELL AT CRETINGHAM Situated in the picturesque village of Cretingham, The Bell is the perfect country pub.

Shop Café Courtyard Selling a wonderful range of home-cured bacon and ham, cheeses, charcuterie, jams, honey and Spanish chocolates. The Café serves food all day long and in the summer months this can be enjoyed in the courtyard garden.

With a large rose garden to the front, and decking under the shady pergola where you can enjoy an al fresco supper or just meet friends for a few drinks, please come and visit us soon! Try a real ale or glass of wine, as you relax in the bar with a light bite to eat. If you prefer something more substantial, take a seat in the restaurant. Fish Platters, Ploughman’s and Sandwiches. Steaks, Pies and Daily Specials. OPEN MON - SAT 11.30am-3pm & 5.30pm-11pm SUN 12noon-4pm & 7pm-10.30pm Telephone 01728 685419 The Street, Cretingham IP13 7BJ.

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round & about

Sign after sign As life slowly returns to a semblance of normality, I realise that one of the things I have missed most during shutdown is being able to walk with friends. That easy chatter which accompanies an afternoon amble has the quality to soothe, reassure and revive – something we all need from time to time – and so I am very much looking forward to today’s walk. And, by the look of Albie’s wagging tail as he watches the troupe walk up Brandeston Street with five dogs in tow, he is too. We start at the triangle, where the road forks to Cretingham, and head off down a wide well-trodden byway lined with towering lime trees. We unleash the dogs, who are blissfully unaware of the new 46

social distancing rules, and as they dance and chase one another, we quickly fall into pairs to catch up on the news. At the ford, a shallow crossing of the River Deben, we draw breath and delight in the sheer exuberance of the dogs who are now giving chase through the shallows. We then follow the path out into the sunshine and just before a large white house, turn right up the hill towards Jubilee Wood. This walk is known locally as the ‘Three Bridges’, but there is a sign up saying that the second bridge has been closed, so today we look for an alternative route. At the top of the meadow, we change pairs and head left and then right once we reach the road. It feels great to be out walking together again and the six happy dogs at our heels

round & about

obviously feel the same way. At a driveway, an important looking robin is perched on the footpath sign as if to show us the way and so we turn left, walking through the farmyard and out along the headland. For a while the path narrows, and we march single file in amicable silence. On reaching a lane, we turn right and then at a T-junction turn left past Bridge Farm Workshops. A single star can be seen in one of the barn windows – another sign perhaps – and we then turn right again along the road and cross back over the Deben. Here we take a small path to the left that leads through the trees and along the side of the river. At a stile we spot another sign, this one not quite so welcome: Bull in field. The chatter stops, we put the dogs on leads, scan the trees,

and with extreme caution (and some strong reluctance) quickly cross the field, reaching the stile on the other side, our hearts still racing. We are now in the woods that skirt the edge of Kingfishers and, in much need of a coffee after our ordeal, head left as soon as we can to find the newly opened Shack Café. Tucked away down by the boating lake, it is in such a tranquil spot that our nerves are soon calmed and there is even talk of giving paddle boarding a go! We head back to the woods and from here it is just a short hike across the meadows back to Brandeston. The group stops: another sign. Oh no – here we go again!



about interiors Dix-Sept Antiques collated The Guildhall Market Hill Framlingham. IP13 9BD T: 01728 564223 Dix-Sept 17 Station Rd Framlingham. IP13 9EA T: 01728 621505 George Juniper & Co Angel Room, The Street Peasenhall. IP17 2HJ T: 01728 660797 www.georgejuniper.co.uk Hart Healing Kitchen 21 Market Hill Framlingham. IP13 9BB www.harthealingkitchen.com in da cottage The Old Fire Station Crown and Anchor Lane Framlingham T: 01728 664095 www.indacottage.co.uk Marlesford Antiques Main Road (A12) Marlesford. IP13 0AG T: 01728 748076 www.marlesfordmill.co.uk Natalie Canning Soft Furnishings T: 01379 668170 www.nataliecanning.co.uk Ruby and the Angel 66A High Street Debenham. IP14 6QP T: 01728 861969 www.rubyandtheangel.co.uk Ruby Tyger 1 The Mews Market Hill Framlingham. IP13 9AN T: 01728 724470 www.rubytyger.co.uk Snape Maltings Snape. IP17 1SP T: 01728 688303 www.snapemaltings.co.uk


about style the-barn.co Friday Street Farnham. IP17 1JX T: 01728 652159 www.the-barn.co The Little Upholster The Street Peasenhall. IP17 2HJ T: 01728 660003 www.thelittleupholster.co.uk Vanil 17 Church St, Woodbridge. IP12 1DS T: 07702 877081 www.vanil.co.uk

about you Carley Hill Hair 29 Market Hill Framlingham. IP13 9AN T: 01728 621068 www.carleyhill.co.uk Framlingham Pharmacy 32 Market Hill Framlingham. IP13 9AY T: 01728 723477 www.cooperspharmacy framlingham.co.uk Hart Healing Kitchen 21 Market Hill Framlingham. IP13 9BB www.harthealingkitchen.com Loggique www.loggique.com or from Vanil, 17 Church St Woodbridge. IP12 1DS

Dix-Sept Antiques Out and About Clothing 4b Market Hill, Framlingham T: 07387 109113 www.outandaboutclothing.co.uk Phoebe and Flo 22a Well Close Square Framlingham. IP13 9DS Ruby and the Angel 66A High Street Debenham. IP14 6QP T: 01728 861969 www.rubyandtheangel.co.uk Ruby Tyger 1 The Mews Market Hill Framlingham. IP13 9AN T: 01728 724470 www.rubytyger.co.uk Sarah Cole Jewellery No 2 The Mews Market Hill Framlingham. IP13 9AN T: 01728 723353 www.sarahcolejewellery.co.uk Snape Maltings www.snapemaltings.co.uk Suffolk Silversmith At Hart Healing Kitchen 21 Market Hill Framlingham. IP13 9BB www.harthealingkitchen.com Vandertas www.vandertas.co.uk Wandering Bee www.wanderingbee.co.uk

Photography credits Sadie Windscheffel-Clarke www.bigfishphotography.com


Donalds Ipswich

9 Crane Boulevard, Ipswich, IP3 9SQ 01473 252484 volvocarsipswich.co.uk

Fuel consumption and CO₂ figures for the MY21 XC40 T3 Manual, in MPG (l/100km): WLTP Combined 37.2 (7.6) - 40.4 (7.0). WLTP CO₂ emissions 173 – 158g/km.

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A B O A R D I N G & DAY S C H O O L ∙ B OY S & G I R L S A G E D 3 - 1 8

Framlingham College Senior School, Framlingham

Framlingham College Prep School, Brandeston

Framlingham College aims to develop in each child the knowledge and skills they need to thrive as global citizens in their adult world. F R A M L I N G H A M C O L L E G E . C O. U K 50

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