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number 12 . September/October 2016. the WEDDING issue


ayrshire magazine Quality & Style In Ayrshire

Quality & Style In Ayrshire


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RAIL INFRASTRUCTURE, ENGINEERING & TRAINING SPECIALISTS Join one of the fastest growing companies in the UK

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Moorfield Industrial Estate, Kilmarnock, Ayrshire KA2 0BA 4

T: 01563 549 049 Quality & Style In Ayrshire



Quality & Style In Ayrshire



number 12

MEET THE AUTHOR – JOANNE HARRIS Mon 3 Oct · 7pm · £5 · Dick Institute SUFFRAGETTE STORIES AJAY CLOSE & LUCY RIBCHESTER Tue 4 Oct · 7pm · £5 · Dick Institute GAELIC EVENING WITH JO MACDONALD AND GILLEBRIDE MACILLEMHAOIL Wed 5 Oct · 7pm · £5 · Auchinleck Library RAILWAY CHILDREN WORKSHOP Thu 6 Oct · 6pm-7.30pm · FREE Cumnock Library · For 5-8 years Book at the library: 01290 427710 PETER ROSS - IN CONVERSATION WITH THERESA TALBOT Thu 6 Oct · 7pm · £5 · Dick Institute WRITING WORKSHOP WITH LOUISE WELSH AND ZOË STRACHAN Fri 7 Oct · 4-6pm · £5 · Dick Institute MEET THE AUTHOR - LOUISE WELSH Fri 7 Oct · 7.30pm · £5 · Dick Institute YOUNG SOUL REBEL: STUART COSGROVE – IN CONVERSATION WITH DAVID ROSS Mon 10 Oct · 7pm · £5 · Dick Institute HUGH MCILVANNEY - IN CONVERSATION WITH GRAHAM SPIERS Wed 12 Oct · 7pm · £10 · Palace Theatre


Photographer| KSG Photography Assistant | Pamela McLennan Models |Nicola Caldwell Stylist| Alana Dick Flowers | Tammy Harkin MUA| Jett Patterson @ Allure Hair & Beauty Kilmarnock Hair | Ashley Nimmo @ Allure Hair & Beauty Kilmarnock Location| Fenwick Hotel, Fenwick

MAIRI HEDDERWICK AND MARTIN MCCARDIE – THE STORY OF KATIE MORAG Sat 22 Oct · 11am · £3 · Dick Institute theayrshiremag ayrshiremagazine ayrshiremagazine




Happy second birthday Ayrshire Magazine. Two years of positive media, ram packed with quality and style showcasing our lifestyle here in Ayrshire. Not only engaging, but free to pick up and free to read online. Please don’t ever doubt that I love you, Ayrshire. For two years now, during the creation of each issue of Ayrshire Magazine, I have sat on the same seat, with the same drink, with the same people, and felt inspired listening to how each of the team view our region. It’s a discussion I wish that tourism and regeneration associates would hear. It’s a room full of passionate and creative individuals, who together have clearly challenged the perception of our beautiful region. With the Golf Issue being so successful I wanted to choose another industry that is nationally recognised - the wedding industry. I was told that wedding industry in Ayrshire caters for over 126 weddings per week, during its peak season. Think of all those jobs, think of all those opportunities. You have to commend all involved. When we lifted the Ayrshire Wedding Veil (no pun intended) we quickly learned that the region offers happy couples, barn weddings, luxury weddings, affordable weddings and everything else in between. The region hosts gorgeous bridal shops, creative florists, stunning hotels, charismatic jewellers and phenomenal photographers. The wedding industry in Ayrshire really is huge. This was recognised in our exclusive interview with David Emanuel, the Ayrshire Philharmonic Opera $ociety proudly presents creator of Princess Diana’s wedding dress. the $cottish Amateur Premier Production of... Away from weddings, we also caught up with Ayrshire’s Rab Affleck. Listening to Rab talk about his journey from Irvine to Hollywood was very inspiring. Listening to Rab talk about acting in roles beside Leonardo De Caprio, Daniel Day Lewis, Daniel Craig and more, ratifies what we believe. We can do anything or be anybody we want, separate from the hand that life has dealt to us. We just need to believe. Away from all the emotional stuff, we have all of your usual contributions, fashion shoots, events and more….. I would like to take this time to thank everyone involved in the creation of Ayrshire Magazine, and to our clients. I am blessed to have known so many talented and gracious individuals, who together have helped challenge the perception, engagement, and identity of Ayrshire.

#Advertise&Promote Andrew

Affiliated to the National Operatic and Dramatic Association



the musical Music & Lyrics by DAVID YAZBEK

Based on the film ‘Dirty Rotten $coundrels’ written by Dale Launer, $tanley $hapiro & Paul Henning This amateur production is presented by arrangement with Josef Weinberger Ltd on behalf of Music Theatre International of New York

TUE 8TH - $AT 12TH NOVEMBER 2016 at the newly refurbished...

AYR GAIETY THEATRE 7.30PM ($aturday matinee 2.00pm)

tickets: £19 concessions: £17* * Tuesday and $aturday evening All standard tickets for $aturday matinee £17 Balcony seating for all performances £12

Tickets available from Mon 8th August 2016 (£2 booking fee applies online)

ticket desk

01292 288235





Weddings 14 David Emanuel


Events 32 Alison Jones 44 Gareth Gillespie


Ayrshire Pets


Natasha Radmehr


Rab Affleck


Ballochmyle Viaduct


Talent Spotter





Juney Shoo 74 Fashion 76 Beauty


Hartfield House





Homes 106 Ayrshire Mums

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brlighting die

Lighting, artwork & home accessories... 20 Main Street, Ayr, Ayrshire, KA8 8EB. T: 01292 282 288 Quality & Style In Ayrshire 9


ayrshire magazine

Editor: Andrew Attard E - Creative Director: Keri Attard E - Fashion & Beauty: Kelly Cripps E - Sales: E -

Editorials: Sergio Burns Kelly Cripps Natasha Radmehr Ann McKinnon Steven Smith A.B. Collier Ryan Rowe Katie Harkin Shirley Husband Alison Jones Alan Moore Cameron Tortolano Photography: Kevin Wylie

Maggie Smith Andy Sokell

Scott Johnstone Ricky Rowe Fiona Reid


KELLY CRIPPS FASHION & BEAUTY Kelly has been working as a make up artist for over a decade. If you need her you can find her at home watching Vice Principles, so funny, or sampling the empire biscuits down at Gro Coffee.

STEVEN SMITH WRITER Steven is a writer for Ayrshire Magazine. He is an animator and musician. He’s obsessed with moves and anything to do with the 80s.

MAGGIE SMITH PHOTOGRAPHER Maggie is one of our main photographers, she likes thai food, travelling the world and loves being a mummy and nagging wife.

KEVIN WYLIE PHOTOGRAPHER He’s won dozens of awards, had magazine covers in several countries AND Vogue magazine described him as a visionary photographer and he shoots for Ayrshire Magazine!

ANDY SOKELL PHOTOGRAPHER Andy is one of the photographers at ayrshire magazine. He regularly competes in local, regional and national competitions but When he’s not out photographing he spends time with his family, out and about in Ayrshire.

SERGIO BURNS WRITER Author, journalist, careers advisor, loves music, R.E.M. Smashing Pumpkins, Smiths, foreign films, football, dogs ( esp Pablo and Caz) and greyhound racing - not necessarily in that order. Sergio is a graduate of Glasgow University.

Michael McManus Yelling Vera Photograpy


Special Thanks: George Watson


All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without written permission is strictly prohibited. All prices and credits are accurate at time of going to press but are subject to change. All advertising is accepted by ourselves in good faith. The publisher is not responsible for the accuracy in any of the adverts. The publisher cannot accept any liability for any errors or omissions that may have appeared in this publication. Any views expressed by the advertiser may not be the views of the publisher. Now the boring stuff is out the way and we still have your attention why don’t you send us some of your WEDDING pics! And tag it to our Facebook page. The first ten entries will get some sweet treats brought round to their place of work.

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Please share your copy of Ayrshire Magazine and recycle it when you are done, or you could make some paper aeroplanes.. its up to you really .


SUMMER ART EXHIBITION GEORGE WYLLIE ‘THE PAPER BOAT’ SCOTTISH MARITIME MUSEUM, IRVINE ONGOING UNTIL MONDAY 26TH SEPTEMBER 2016 10AM - 5PM Included in admission. Up to three children go free with every adult admission. EXPLORE CULZEAN’S CAVES CULZEAN CASTLE & COUNTRY PARK. MAYBOLE SATURDAY 10TH SEPTEMBER 2016 10.30AM - 12NOON Book a place on one of the guided tours into the locked doors of the caves below the Castle. Explore the different chambers and hear tales of the smugglers who used them, learn about their ancient history and some facts about their formation. Children must be 8 years and over and accompanied by an adult. SEA KAYAKING EXPEDITION CULZEAN CASTLE & COUNTRY PARK. MAYBOLE SUNDAY 11TH SEPTEMBER 2016 9AM - 3PM A full day exploring the many sheltered coves and headlands that dot the coastline radiating from the Castle in either direction. The expedition will explore the areas scenery, wildlife and history whilst providing the paddlers with plenty of opportunities to be explore on their own within a framework of a led expedition. There will be an opportunity for soup and sandwich lunch at a nearby pub. All kit and equipment supplied, Lunch not included. Due to the nature of the coastline, the changeable weather and duration of the tour this trip is for experienced paddlers only. Cost £60.



The Ayrshire Memory Walk offers the opportunity to mark your support, fundraise and enjoy the beautiful promenade and sandy beaches with views across to the Isle of Arran and Ailsa Craig on the River Clyde. As well as face painting and entertainment on the day the family can enjoy a host of activities and refreshments. Costs: Under 12s - Free, 12-16 - £5, 16+ - £10.

Organised by the Newmilns Regeneration Association and supported by local businesses, the Community Food Fund and Awards for All, this FREE to attend Food Festival will showcase the best of local food and drink. You will be able to sample local food and drink in the Covered Marketplace, where you will find local produces selling the best of Ayrshire Food and Drink. Watch one of our Demonstrations and learn more about Food – demonstrations are still to be finalised but will cover fish, meat, cheese, cooking with every day and exotic ingredients. Encourage your children or grandchildren to enter our Grand Cookery Competition – held in partnership with our local schools. Have afternoon tea in the Tea Room – with home baking! And we’ve even got our own Newmilns Bake Off! See which male NRA Committee Member can best please our Scottish Women’s Institute judge . . . with his classic Victoria Sponge.

ROBERT BURNS, HIS LIFE AND LOVES ROBERT BURNS BIRTHPLACE MUSEUM, ALLOWAY, AYR ONGOING UNTIL SATURDAY 17TH SEPTEMBER 2016 Bright, colourful, lively and fun new paintings of Robert Burns by Troon artist Graham McKean.The exhibition will be running until September and is displayed in the Gallery in the Pavilion by the Burns Cottage. Parking is available close to the Pavilion and by the museum. SHAVENGERS BOOTCAMP CATRINE HOUSE, MAUCHLINE. KY5 5JY SATURDAY 17TH SEPTEMBER 2016 9.30AM Minimum sponsorship Adults: £80 Children (11+ for assault course): £60. Take part in this sponsored assault course and target practice challenge event to realise your full superhero potential. A day for all the family participants and spectators will have loads to do with lots of superhero games and challenges to try in the village, an assault course challenge and target practice - using paintballs guns, superhero stencils and a target to create your own superhero splatter art! Registration starts at 9.30am and the day will wrap up about 4pm. Contact gemma.powell@hdscotland. org for more details.

ROALD DAHL – 100 . . .THE WONKATANIA SCOTTISH MARITIME MUSEUM, HARBOUR ROAD, IRVINE MONDAY 19TH SEPTEMBER 2016 11AM - 4PM All day drop in activities, including storytelling, crafts and our imaginations. For all ages. Up to three children go free with every adult admission.

Quality & Style In Ayrshire



GAIETY THEATRE, AYR SATURDAY 24TH SEPTEMBER 2016 2.30PM & 7.30PM Taylor and Boyle are at it again and this time it’s criminal (not proven!) Come and join Gaiety pantomime favourite’s Chris Taylor and Fraser Boyle as they fritter your evening away with their brand new comedy showcase: The Taylor and Boyle Show! Tickets: Premium: £18.50 / £17.50 (conc), Standard: £16.00 / £15.00 (conc), Economy: £13.50 / £12.50 (conc) THE MCDOUGALLS HISTORY MYSTERY CUMNOCK TOWN HALL (SAT) BARRFIELDS THEATRE, LARGS (SUN) SATURDAY 24TH & SUNDAY 25TH SEPTEMBER 2016 2PM TICKETS: £5 (FAMILY OF 4: £16) A family musical adventure suitable for 2 yrs+ . Come and help the McDougalls solve the History Mystery in this brandnew interactive musical show for weans of all ages! All aboard the magical time-travelling garden shed, with their friends Morag the Rabbit and Wee Shug from next door, as they whizz through time to solve a puzzle. Along the way they meet a host of wacky historical characters and creatures who might be able to help. THE PARK HOTEL’S WEDDING FAYRE THE PARK HOTEL SUNDAY 25TH SEPTEMBER 2016 DOORS OPEN 12NOON UNTIL 4PM For full details contact the events department on 01563 545990 or email

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STARBRIGHT ENTERTAINMENTS PRESENT. THE RAILWAY CHILDREN CUMNOCK TOWN HALL TUESDAY 11TH OCTOBER 2016 1.30PM E. Nesbit’s well-loved tale is brought to life in this new adaptation by Woolford and John. Roberta, Peter and Phyllis live in a comfortable house in London until their father, who works for the government, is falsely accused of selling state secrets and imprisoned for five years. DON’T DRIBBLE ON THE DRAGON THE PALACE THEATRE, KILMARNOCK TUESDAY 11TH OCTOBER 2016 2.30PM Join us for the Scottish premiere of this mesmerising new musical from the creators of the hit shows Old MacDonald Had A Farm and How The Koala Learnt To Hug. Based on the fabulous new book by Steven Lee and with magic designed by the much loved and much missed Paul Daniels, this spectacular musical adventure about growing up and the importance of family is the perfect feel good show for big hearted adults and little ones alike. Tickets: £12/ £10 (Family of 4: £40) TAMFEST VARIOUS AYR FRIDAY 28TH - SUNDAY 30TH OCTOBER 2016 TamFest is Ayr’s spooktacular Halloween celebration with a Tam o’ Shanter twist. So join ghosts, ghouls and goblins for some frighteningly good family entertainment. It’s scary how many fun things there are to do. Haunted houses, live music, street market, children’s zones and haunted tours mean the hardest decision you’ll have to make is witch events to enjoy. Visit the website for more information

ALLOWEEN BURNS COTTAGE, ALLOWAY, AYR SATURDAY 29TH OCTOBER 2016 VARIOUS Are you brave enough to visit Alloway on Halloween? Spooky Guided Tour of the Bard’s birthplace and Alloway’s Auld Haunted Kirk. Join one of our “ghostly guides” and wander the streets of Alloway discovering tales of hauntings, suspicious deaths and maybe even the deil who “might have business on his hand!” Admission. Adults £9. Children (8+) £6. Family £25. LIGHT INTO DARK CULZEAN CASTLE & COUNTRY PARK, MAYBOLE SATURDAY 29TH - SUNDAY 30TH OCTOBER 2016 6.10PM Who knows what or who we might meet along the way! From vampires to witches, smugglers to Sawney Bean are you brave enough to join us on light into dark? Meet at Visitor Centre. Children must be 8 years or over and accompanied. The walk is followed by soup, cake and a hot drink. Costs: Adult: £8. Child: £4, booking essential. MAD HATTER’S HALLOWEEN TEA PARTY ROBERT BURNS BIRTHPLACE MUSEUM, ALLOWAY, AYR SATURDAY 29TH & SUNDAY 30TH OCTOBER 2016 Don’t be late for a very important date! Join Alice and her friends at our spooky Mad Hatter’s Halloween Tea Party and be presented with a feast of colourful cakes, drink me potions and all things Alice in Wonderland.

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Photographer| KSG Photography Assistant | Pamela McLennan Models |Nicola Caldwell & Elise Binnie Stylist| Alana Dick Flowers | Tammy Harkin Jewellery | Antoine Jewellery Prestwick MUA| Jett Patterson @ Allure Hair & Beauty Kilmarnock Hair | Ashley Nimmo @ Allure Hair & Beauty Kilmarnock Location| Fenwick Hotel, Fenwick


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DAVID EMANUEL The Welshman And A Wedding Dress For the Princess of Wales BY: SERGIO BURNS


n Wednesday July 29, 1981, Prince Charles, the Prince of Wales, the 33 year-old heir to the throne, married 20 year-old Lady Diana Spencer. On the streets 600,000 people waited patiently in the hope of catching a glimpse of the Royal couple, while a television audience of 750 million watched the ceremony as it was beamed live. Many, of course, hoping to to get a good look at the all important wedding dress. For David Emanuel and his then wife, Elizabeth, it was one of the most exciting days of their lives. They had been responsible for the design and delivery of the wedding dress, the glamorous, soon to be Princess Diana, was wearing. “The call came, she rang up and made an appointment just like anyone else,” David explained to Ayrshire Magazine as he recalled the day Princess Diana hired them. “Except it wasn’t just anyone else.” The Emanuels were now in the elevated company of Royalty, they were to make the wedding dress for the woman who, potentially, could be the wife of the next King. There was pressure, of course, but David Emanuel remembered it as a happy experience with a woman who was easy to work with. “It was incredibly exciting,” he recalled. “Myself and my ex-wife Elizabeth felt honoured, obviously, but we treated it like any other commission. We worked on a dress that was right for the client and the occasion. But we realised she was going in as Lady Diana, but coming out as HRH, The Princess of Wales. Diana was an absolute joy. My biggest compliment was on leaving my studio the night of the Royal Wedding, the phone went and it was ‘me’ – she’d always say that (Princess Diana). She

was delighted and said Prince Charles loved the dress, all the family loved it and it was a really nice compliment to have.” Born and raised just outside Cardiff, Emanuel was one member of a large and often boisterous family, speaking Welsh as his first language. Always inclined toward the more creative side, he had substantial musical ability, played several instruments and sang in the County Youth Choir. But it was always art and design that captivated the Young David. “I loved art and music from a young age,” Emanuel revealed. “I used to draw non stop, all day, every day and, if I wasn’t drawing, I was playing the piano. I attended Cardiff School of Art and Design and found myself drawn to beautiful things. I knew fashion was what I wanted to do and it went from there really.” After studying at the Cardiff School of Art and Design, he moved to London and studied at Harrow School of Art, where he met Elizabeth Weiner, his future wife. Born in London to an American father and British mother, Elizabeth married David in 1976 and later the two became the first married couple to study at the Royal College of Art – where David completed his Masters of Art in Fashion Design. The couple also launched their own fashion house in 1977 and together have two children, Oliver and Eloise. The life changing moment, of course, was making that very special wedding dress for Princess Di. It was made from the finest ivory silk, pure taffeta and antique lace. An iconic creation which had no fewer than 10,000 pearls incorporated into the design, as well as a magnificent 25 foot train.

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The Emanuels divorced in 1990, and today David has his own business, David Emanuel Couture. He has dressed some of the biggest names on the planet including Joan Collins, Faye Dunaway, Madonna, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Ivana Trump. The business is also involved in wardrobe design for stage productions. “Anything for the theatre, the ballet or a concert, needs to be larger than life, to register for the audience” he told us. “It is both fantasy and fun.” In 2013, Emanuel was one of the contestants on I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, finishing a creditable second. The show was won by Kian Egan with Lucy Parteger in third place. “Brilliant, terrifying, but brilliant,” Emanuel said of the experience. “I thought if I can do this I can do anything. It taught me so much and I tried things I never thought I would. The challenges were testing at times, but they gave you purpose and something to put your mind to. I found the food (or lack of it) quite difficult. It was a once in a lifetime experience, I would go back tomorrow.” In March this year it was announced David Emanuel would front the British Version of the enormously

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popular US show Say Yes To The Dress. The UK’s Say Yes To The Dress airs on Fridays at 9pm on TLC. TLC is available on Sky 125, Virgin 167, BT TV 323, Talk Talk 323. Looking back David Emanuel appears contented with a successful life in the fashion industry, and was keen to pass on his experiences to anyone hoping to follow this line of work as a career. Reminding people it’s not ALL about glitz and glamour. “Listen to advice,” He told us candidly. “Take it on board and never give up. Real talent will shine through, but you have to have determination and be prepared for anything to be thrown at you along the way. But remember, it is 95 per cent hard work and 5 per cent glamour.” Say Yes To The Dress showing at 9pm, Fridays on TLC, might be a good place to start. David Emanuel knows that success does not come easy but he is a living example of what is possible. From Princess Di’s wedding dress to I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here over 20 years later, and onto Say Yes To The Dress, it’s been an exciting and at times, unpredictable ride.

jewellery, accessories and all things gorgeous... & Style In Ayrshire 291013 Cherry Soda @ Ayr Central, Ayr | T: 01292Quality





lanas Bridal Lounge is a family run business in Kilmarnock that promises to provide only the best service for brides on their special day. They specialise in dresses for brides as well as bridesmaids and vow to take care of you all the way up to the day of the wedding in any way they can. Having had the business for nearly 9 years, the current shop which opened in 2014 has proven to be massively popular all over Ayrshire for its excellent customer service. With a seamstress background and a wealth of industry knowledge, owner Alana Dick is pushing the competition aside to provide the brides of Ayrshire with the best collection of dresses from the bet collections an designers in the UK. Beyond this, Alana is also skilled at alteration, transforming previously owned dressed into a new, unique bespoke dress that is truly just for the bride. In Alanas lounge, the brides are treated with the utmost importance. They have an exclusive one on

meeting with her to assure she is giving the bride her full undivided attention. This way, Alana can get to work helping the bride pick what she wants from her vast collection. Using the impressive runway and gilded mirror for the bride to model dresses, ensuring the dress is perfect for her walk down the aisle. Being that the 2016 wedding season is drawing to a close, Brides will now be looking ahead into 2017 and beyond for their special days and, of course, that one amazing dress. Alana has provided a list of what she predicts will be big hits with the brides to be in the coming wedding season: Bridal Separates Bridal Seperated are unique in the sense that it really lets a Bride design her own look in a way that wasn’t at all possible before. With a range of different styles of tops and skirts which the bride can mix and match, it will help those who were perhaps struggling to find that perfect dress design one for their very own. As Alana points out, many brides fall in love with a certain part of a dress and not the other so this is an advantage they may not have had before. Rich Ruffles At their essence these are ruffles dressed/skirts designed to add a fun, feminine and frivolous edge to a bridal gown. Ruffles can be layered to bring more drama and dimension to this attentiondrawing wedding dress.

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Off The Shoulder The Bardot style of wedding dress is a 1950’s inspired form of gown is a new style that has dominated the spring collection and will be sure to be a neckline that sticks around for a while. Lace Tattoo These gowns give the illusion of bare skin in the use of sheer fabrics that include embellishes and design that give it that ‘tattoo’ look. The look is said to paid well with soft tulle flowing skirts. This style really brings a more contemporary feel to something more traditional. Belts & Bows Simple at its core, the inclusion of a belt or bow to a wedding gown can add some flavour to the design, especially if its a simple, clean line gown.

Photo Credit | Ricky Rowe

Those are the tips and ideas Alana has for the next wedding season and ones she may well offer to you if you visit her lounge in search of that one special dress.

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here do I start? I grew up in the North Devonshire countryside amongst all things naturally beautiful; this is where my love of flowers began. You were never short of roving hills; richly wooded valleys and inspiring cliffs that captured the rich essence of countryside charm. This is where my floral love affair truly started. I danced from a very young age before studying and forging a career in dance and theatre in Scotland, another passion of mine….looking back my passions were fuelled by all things creative and the visual stimulation of Nature’s tools. Upon finishing my career as a professional dancer I have now married both passions together, pulling on my time as a professional dance artist. Dance and floral design should be visually affective, the pieces should be thought provoking, stimulating and inspiring. Floral design to me is not unlike that of a dance stage piece, from the elegant choreography and colours to the formation of the flowers that marry together to create a breathtaking showcase that is your wedding or event. My ethos at Daisy Rose is to make floral art pieces that reflect my clients’ stories and background…how , when and where they met for example. This allows me to chose flowers, colours, textures that suit their story creating a unique bespoke design that reflects

their personality, life and loves. One of the most fulfilling parts of my job is the insight into people’s lives, brides share pictures of their gowns and bridesmaid dresses and the love for their husband to be. They share their dreams and aspirations for the future, this allows me the platform to create a visionary scene, a stage piece that is their wedding day through the medium of breathtaking large structures, centrepieces, button holes and bouquets. I have had the privilege to have been taught by some of the country’s leading designers in floristry, with a wealth of knowledge and experience in an industry I love. 2017 is set to be a whirl wind with massive trends from plunging necklines to off-the-shoulder gowns, and big bold bows, the Spring 2017 bridal runways are full of major wedding inspiration….foliage… foliage…foliage will be the staple for bridal bouquets everywhere. At Daisy Rose I’m never one to follow trends but eagerly chassé along side them drawing inspiration from these going forward into the year ahead. Garden, whimsical and rustic floral designs with a high fashion feel are still very much in demand, which sets my floral heart alight with creative vision. Do I pirouette or jeté whilst making my floral designs? Well only sometimes.

Daisy Rose Floral Design | Kilmarnock | 07786401976 | | Fb Daisy Rose floral design | Insta daisyroseflorals

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Grooms make passes at brides

who wear glasses...

Start seeing things differently Kilmarnock




Troon tel. 01563 525059

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Photo Credit | Scott Johnstone





or any brides to be seeking that one special ring, one need look no further than Antoine. A jewellery company from Prestwick that has its roots far from the small town, promises to bring you only the best in bespoke jewellery for your special day.

From a pairing of Ayrshire and French families, the company has formed a unique way of providing only the best service for their customers as well as a combined vast expertise on all things jewellery the company is ready to help you in any way they can to get you what you exactly what you want. In keeping with the theme of this issue, Antoine let me know what he thinks is going to be popular in his shop for the next bridal season and beyond. There is obviously a strong focus on the bespoke jewellery they offer and the unique process they use to ensure that everything is exactly what you want. The process begins with a consultation where you will sit down with Antoine and tell him what you would like, design wise for your ring etc. They then take all of your considerations and come back with a design that they create in technical drawing software. Once the customer is happy with what

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they see, the piece is then made to the specifications they requested i.e. stone, metals. Antoine, being a diamond specialist means he works with the best diamond dealers from across the globe, finding the best deals on high quality diamonds. This is a process not offered by your high street jewellers and is a truly unique, customer friendly experience. He has to say on the process, “I have found that the modern-day consumer is moving away from predesigned jewellery. Jewellers are selling pre-made jewellery with limited options for customisation and personalisation. I have found that people want customised and personal options.”. Its clear from this process that the company really focuses on service and the well being of the customer, a relief to any bride or groom who are drawing near to their big day. The focus on the

customer doesn’t end here as Antoine also offers repairs and remodelling on jewellery. If there’s a problem or a change needed with a ring then the company can fix it to your needs. This is also great if you’re perhaps using a family ring that is damaged or needs re-working in some way. These options are a big appeal for soon to be newly-weds and regular customers alike. Another addition coming soon from Antoine is his very own jewellery collection. Designed by and him and being released exclusively in his shop, this collection is sure to be a must have for the brides of next year and beyond. With no word on a release date yet, Antoine premisses that it is coming soon so those interested will have to keep an eye on his shop and on social media for updates on when the collection will be arriving at his shop. When speaking on his company’s mindset, Antonie says “In an industry dominated by big chains selling massproduced jewellery ranges, there was an opportunity to offer something different. Our service and design process is much more personal, with more of a youthful mentality.” Any soon to be brides looking for that ring for their special day will be treated with a warm welcome and a truly unique experience when they visit Antoine. Anything that makes wedding planning easier whilst also providing beautiful, personal jewellery at the same time is nothing short of amazing for any bride to be.

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Congratulations to Jack and Chantalle Sutton on your Marriage, From Ayrshire Magazine

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At Alana’s Bridal Lounge we offer an extensive range of beautiful bridal gowns as well as bridesmaid, �lower girl, and prom dresses.

We also stock a lovely selection of bridal shoes, veils and hair accessories to add that �inishing touch to your special day 2 College Wynd Kilmarnock, KA1 1HN 01563 573415 Alana’s Bridal Lounge @alanabridal73

VISIT US IN STORE AT 3 Shore Road, Troon, South Ayrshire VISIT US IN STORE AT 3 Shore Road, Troon, South Ayrshire

Photo Credit | Yelling Vera Photography


QTS LADIES NIGHT 2016 QTS Ladies Night is regarded as one of the highlights of the Ayrshire social calendar and this year was no exception! The QTS sponsored day saw thousands descend on the gates of Ayr Racecourse, ready for a brilliant evening of racing and entertainment. The opening race featured the return of the annual all-female jockey line up, a touching nod to kick off the premier Ladies Night. This year’s Top 13 Miss Scotland finalists were also on site to help pick some of the evenings best dressed ladies with the aid of hosts Jennifer Reoch and Colin McArdle. The Miss Scotland girls also managed to raise some cash for the Prices Trust. The evening with rounded off with some fantastic entertainment, with global DJ Trevor Nelson delivering an astounding 90-minute set, followed by Ayrshire favourite, Colin McArdle, who closed the evening in style.

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Photo Credit - Yelling Vera Photography


Quality & Style In Ayrshire


Photo Credit | David Gilbert Photography


AYRSHIRE HOSPICE SUMMER BALL AT TRUMP TURNBERRY. The Ayrshire Hospice has raised a spectacular £70,000 at its Summer Ball on Saturday (27th August 2016), the first event to be held in the impressive new Donald J. Trump Ballroom at Trump Turnberry Resort. The event was attended by 440 people who showed their support and generosity by raising welcomed funds for the hospice. Talented stars from BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing surprised guests on the evening including host, Anton Du Beke and Aljaz Skorjanec and Janette Manrara who sizzled with style on the dance floor as they performed a Cha Cha, Rumba and Argentinian Tango. After the Strictly masterclass, the guests danced the night away to the fabulous Infinity Show Band.

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Photo Credit - Yelling Vera Photography


BIG DAY AT URQUHART OPTICIANS Independent optometrists Urquhart Opticians celebrated their centenary with style last month as their flagship Kilmarnock practice hosted a fun filled open day. East Ayrshire Provost Jim Todd kicked off the celebrations at the smartly refurbished practice as partners Peter Telfer and Alistair Duff welcomed friends and clients to the 100th birthday party. As well as drinks, canapes and birthday cake, there was lots of fun for younger visitors with a disco dome and face painting plus visits from Hello Kitty and Dave the Minion. Local historian Frank Beattie also gave a fascinating talk on Urquharts and Kilmarnock over the past 100 years. Quality & Style In Ayrshire


Photo Credit | Andy Sokell


ST. JAMES’S PLACE FOUNDATION LADIES NIGHT The St. James’s Place Foundation is the charitable arm of St. James’s Place Wealth Management. It has supported those in need since its formation in 1992. As a result of the commitment of its entire community, the Foundation has become one of the most successful company charities in the UK and has raised £50m to date. The company match all funds raised pound for pound.On Friday 26th August, Jane Ballantyne hosted a Ladies Night at The Fenwick Hotel. This was a fantastic night, enjoyed and generously supported by over 200 ladies raising over £20,000 which is very much appreciated.

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CYCLING STARS IN KILMARNOCK On Sunday 4 September, cycling stars - including eight medallists from the Rio Olympics - raced from Glasgow to Castle Douglas as the Tour of Britain got under way. The opening stage of the week-long event took in over 50 miles of East Ayrshire countryside as it passed through Stewarton,Kilmarnock, Auchinleck, Cumnock and Dalmellington. The Tour of Britain has grown in stature in recent years and now attracts some of the biggest names in the sport. Spectators turned out along the route to cheer on olympic medallists Mark Cavendish, Sir Bradley Wiggins, Owain Doull, Elia Viviani, Jack Bobridge, Alex Edmondson, Michael Hepburn and Tom Dumoulin. German Sprinter Andre Greipel, nicknamed ‘The Gorilla’ won the opening stage for Lotto Soudal. Mark Cavendish, a favourite to win, crashed on the final corner on the approach to Castle Douglas with Team Sky’s Elia Viviani.

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Quality & Style In Ayrshire





nother one bites the dust! – the first words of congrats from my oldest friends when I announced my engagement last year. After that, the kind words of congratulations and well wishes followed, but that was first instance where I got to see first-hand how differently the engagement journey is for bride and groom. I’ve worked in fashion for more than 10 years. I’ve studied at Glasgow School of Art and the Royal School of Needlework. I’ve worked for large retailers and small retailers and now run my own menswear brand. I’ve designed prints for dresses, embroideries for coats, tartans for kilts and tweed for jackets across both menswear and womanswear, from the traditional fashion seasons, to one off standalone projects. Yet there has always been one area of fashion and retail that I’ve avoided; The Wedding Market. Recently my business has seen a lot of customers looking for wedding outfits that isn’t traditional Highlandwear. I love Highlandwear, done well it makes any man look resplendent. It’s smart, tasteful,

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subtle and regal, yet there are some men who have a real aversion to wearing it, especially the kilt. There seems to be a shared view that kilts are a bit dated, that it’s not quite worth the investment and doesn’t have the same versatility as a suit. Times have changed and people want to wear their wedding outfit more than once, so that makes sense. But what’s wrong with the kilt? Why are modern discerning gentlemen shunning the national dress over practicality? The hire industry has a lot to answer for. My few experiences of kilt hire probably echoes that of my father’s and his father’s before him. Shops that I’ve visited are dated and tired. They feel like what I image Scotland was like in the 70s; modern retail units, with strip lighting and blue carpet tiles, pictures of Archie Gemmill and Big Jock and stories of World Cup could have been’s. A time where a man wasn’t supposed to care about clothes and if he did, it was emasculating; you wear what you’re told and you’re told how to wear it. I recently heard a story of a chap being given a shirt to try on with his kilt that was still warm from the last customer who CONT.

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tried it on. Not the contemporary luxury experience a gentleman should be receiving. Retailers seem to be oblivious to a changing consumer attitude and expectation, only fulfilling the basic requirements. Bridal boutiques welcome brides-to-be with champagne and chocolates, dote on them in luxurious surroundings, with subtle relaxing strings playing in the background. What do the grooms get? A pint of patronisation to a soundtrack of Clyde One travel updates. It’s clear to everyone that menswear is enjoying a real renaissance, and men are becoming increasingly particular about clothing, for all occasions. Gents are interested in their clothes, in the fit, the fabric, the details and the provenance. The idea of one size fits all has never been accepted in womanswear, and it’s being questioned more and more in menswear. For some of us, we will never stick to that 300 workout we started; and we’ll never look like Gerry Butler. Some of us have shoulders

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that were made for tossing salads, not cabers, and the only pecs we have are the Gregories on our face. Then there’s the demographic that have carefully sculpted their body over time, routinely exercising their vocal cords in armchair football management, on a staple diet of rolls and sausage and pints of Bellhaven. The point is, no two people are the same shape and size, and as we become ever more aware of that, we become ever less tolerable of clothes that don’t fit. Times have changed; regular sleeves are too long or too short, regular shoulders are too wide and too high, that wool blend has too much blend and it’s too hot. These things used to be ignored, but no longer. It’s time the Highlandwear industry looked itself in the mirror, pulled up its socks, straightened its tie and tried to become a modern gentleman. So what do you think, is the kilt outfit pan breed? Is the problem the outfit or the experience? Are kilt hire shops stuck in the 70s?




Quality & Style In Ayrshire


Photo Credit | Michael McManus


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‘Have you met Miss Jones?’ - someone said as we shook hands. I am just Miss Jones. I might as well change my name to Bridget... I didn’t think I would have much to personally comment on the ever abstracted topic of weddings and marriage - being the modern self-sustainable, independent woman of the world that I am (All the single ladies, put your hands up) - but then, one of those absolutely serendipitous moments came along: My best friend Paula gets engaged within days of my print deadline, and here I am... A future bridesmaid (I mean, congratulations to Paula and Laura!). So now I officially qualified and have resumed the position of an avid stakeholder in the wedding game. Can you get a “bridesmaid-zilla”? Do I get some say in this forthcoming day’s proceedings? I have already requested that I will wear anything, as long as I look better than the other bridesmaid. But seriously though, am I allowed to choreograph just who catches the bouquet? Because, if so, hello, future husband! Now that those questions are out of my system (for just now, at least as I await the official date being set), I think they highlight the frenzy that happens postengagement, all the way up to the big day itself. Or I can imagine this to be true as when I was a little girl, I used to drag my mother around the wedding shops to gawk in awe of the wedding dresses, and I had always dreamed of being a flower girl (this dream never came true, by the way - so if anyone requires a 5’’4 flower girl, then I will make myself available). So, as you set up your ‘Wedding Day <3’ Pinterest board, you will discover that wedding day accessories have moved on from something borrowed, blue, old and new to a whole world of clashing leather jackets and lace dresses, and rustic ‘naked’ cakes that are all so in this season, darling. You heard it here first (but probably not). Although any Scottish wedding includes the ballad of the Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond, you don’t even need to walk 500 miles to reach Ayrshire, where you are spoiled for choice in wedding venues and a

host of professionals who will assist in every part of your special day. (Someone even told me that it was Ayrshire’s unparalleled hospitality that introduced the 10pm banquet of rolls and sausage, which really expands on the term of the ‘Wedding Breakfast’.) When tying the knot, whether you walk down the aisle to organ music or to ‘Lovely Day’ by Bill Withers; if you chose to grapple with what traditions to enforce; such as the prohibition of the removal of hats before the Mother of the Bride or if rain is lucky on your wedding day; or even, how long you will permit the Best Man’s speech to last; enjoy every moment. From the outside looking in, there is no greater moment than to witness two people publicly devoting themselves to each other for the rest of their lives. And this is something that the happy couple needs to remember. From an onlookers point of you, the day itself is not a day for a tyrannical bridal party, or even tyrannosaurus Bride-zilla, or even Groom-zilla. It is the perfect day, so why don’t you enjoy it? From small registrar’s wedding, followed by the pub for a shandy or two, to package deals which include everything from a Master of Ceremonies to the all-important chair-covers. You may get married in a barn, or on the beach, in a Hotel or a holy place. Weddings and hospitality are what we Ayrshirefolk do best. According to statistics from the National Records in 2013, South Ayrshire came second in the most popular destination to marry in Scotland per population area in a local authority. This position was second only to Dumfries and Galloway, home to Gretna Green, famed for its historical runaway weddings and subsequent hosting of a mere 5,000 each year. So, whether you’ve always dreamed about being a flower girl, or if you’ve had your Pinterest board ready since 2008 just waiting on the man of your dreams to ‘put a ring on it’, choose Ayrshire as the backdrop for your wedding day.

Quality & Style In Ayrshire




Then let us begin… L

ike all great stories, the best ones have happy endings, and the story of Comfort Europe is well on its way to being just that. It’s a tale of ambition, inspiration, audacity – at times, sheer madness – but most of all, it’s a story of ‘paying it forward’.

After leaving school, Gareth tried various jobs – actually pretty much every job you could imagine and some you probably never even knew existed. From the heady heights of stuffing haggis into cans at Grant Highland Foods in Galston, to stacking shelves, and selling batteries – he even had a go at plumbing! But Gareth grew bored as soon as he had absorbed all that he could from each role. That’s when he decided – at the age of just 18 – to set up business with a friend. Inexperience and the overconfidence of youth unfortunately led to this venture failing, however, there is no success without hardship and this simply fired his hunger for business; he knew he would not make the same mistakes again. After some reflection, Gareth then found himself working for an office furniture company based in Glasgow, initially as a sales rep. Keen to try out different roles, he worked his way through the departments, gaining essential skills and knowledge, connecting with industry experts and building up a network of contacts. Then, more secure in his knowledge of this sector, he decided he was ready for a new challenge – and so, in 2006, started his own business selling office chairs online from his spare bedroom. Using the technical skills he’d refined along the way to embrace the newly expanding web-based market, it was an almost instant success – trending at the top of Google within a month. He was going to need a bigger spare bedroom! But Gareth had greater ambitions still. Boarding a plane to China, Gareth set off half way around the world on a mission to become the sole UK distributer for a brand of office seating that had caught his eye. With no appointment pre-arranged, there was a risk that he wouldn’t even get past reception, but repeating the mantra ‘nothing ventured, nothing gained’ he remained optimistic and confident that he would return with an opportunity. He was not disappointed. Gareth hired a translator and set off for Comfort Seating in Guangzhou, China. An impressive business with a turnover then in the tens of millions of dollars and specialising in ergonomic and eco-friendly office chairs, it was perhaps fate that the CEO, Neil Wu, was at his desk that day. Surprised to hear that an impulsive Scotsman had flown across the world to see him, he gave Gareth ten minutes of his time. They connected. However, Neil didn’t make it easy, he set Gareth a challenge to sell 12,000 units in a year, and – if he succeeded – Comfort Seating would agree to the sole distribution license. And so, Mesh Office Seating was born. Mesh began supplying their office task seating across the United Kingdom to dealer markets – competing with the likes of Herman Miller and Steelcase. A tough market to break into, but with passion, determination and a strong sales ethos, Mesh soon made its mark.

A chance encounter as a child, sometime in the early eighties, changed the course of Gareth Gillespie’s life. One morning, while out playing with his friends, Gareth (who at the time lived in Newmilns with his mum and his gran) noticed a sleek, bright, pillar box red Ferrari roar past. One of the most coveted cars on earth and the embodiment of success, Gareth decided at that moment that he was going to have one himself some day. And so the story begins.

The business grew quickly, and by 2008, Gareth relocated to a small office and warehouse in Darvel. Within a year, the business had grown to seven team members – all based locally. Realising that he couldn’t manage the running of Mesh alone, Gareth took on a colleague, Alisdair McGready, from his time at an Irvine-based flooring company, whom he knew would perfectly compliment his less conventional style of business. By 2012, Mesh had outgrown its offices again and relocated to an old, ramshackle lace mill in Newmilns. The desire to keep the business local has always been at the forefront of Gareth’s plans, and the purchase of Riverbank Mill was more than simply relocating to larger premises (although the 34,000 sq ft neighbouring

Quality & Style In Ayrshire



warehouse did help). For Gareth, it was an opportunity to give a new lease of life to an important historic building and invest in his home town. Gareth explains: “We wanted to create an environment that wouldn’t look out of place in either Ayrshire or London. Visitors are blown away by what they find tucked away in the heart of the Ayrshire countryside. Our chairs are designed to encourage work-life balance, promoting healthy working and productivity – our workspace had to echo that too.” He continues: “We also wanted to reflect the history of the building and the local area. Using images from the Burns Monument Centre, the showroom walls celebrate the Newmilns lace industry’s past by featuring sepia-aged photos of the looms, workers and buildings from as far back as the late 1800’s.” The former industrial building was in a state of complete disrepair before their team of designers, space planners and builders transformed the neglected exterior to its former glory and converted the interior to a 7,000 sq ft office furniture showroom for commercial seating. The interior manages to balance the traditional and contemporary with personality and comfort without missing a beat. On the ground floor, suspended galvanized ducting, shrewd lighting and exposed brickwork inflections deliver a powerful backdrop to the displays. The first floor includes a further showroom 2,400 sq ft in size, with lavish lighting, a welcoming relaxation zone in which to showcase lounge seating, and personalised graphic walls in all the offices designed by the employees themselves. From frogs to forests, giraffes to daisies, it’s a successful fusion of Gareth’s (somewhat eccentric and unconventional) approach to business, with the practicality of an efficient and stylish workspace. Gareth believes this unorthodox approach has been pivotal to the success of the business.

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“We have an exceptionally low staff turnover – and that’s something I’m very proud of. By involving the whole team in decisions and allowing them the freedom to put their own stamp on where they work, we have a very tight-knit crew. Many of the team have been with us since the beginning when we were in Darvel. That trust and camaraderie is what sets us apart in the industry.” With continued double-digit growth and a respected brand making strong waves in the sector, Gareth considered his options for moving the business forward. There really was only one solution – to manufacture in the UK and conquer the European market too. Using the knowledge and success from Mesh’s journey, Gareth entered into new discussions with the Chinese manufacturer, Comfort Seating. A partnership agreement was agreed wherein the parent company would help Mesh evolve from a UK-only supply company to a local manufacturer that also managed a Europe-wide distribution network. A huge undertaking for what was still a relatively small business, but one he knew would secure the longevity of the company, create jobs and add prosperity to Ayrshire. The deal has led to over £3 million of investment and the creation of over twenty new jobs in the last year. This growth, however, has brought its own challenges. Firstly, the company has undergone a massive rebrand and is now known as Comfort Europe – a name which reflects the parent company’s global brand exposure. This has required large investment in redesigning the company literature, website and advertising. With a new international dealer market, international linguistics have also required a fresh marketing approach. Beyond that – physical growth, once again – needed to be addressed. “Although Riverbank Mill is the perfect environment for us at the moment, as manufacturing increases, we knew we would have to invest in even larger premises. We spent a lot of time searching for a property that would allow


Clockwise from top left: Personalised office inside Riverbank Mill; Exhibition stand from CIFF 2016; George the Giraffe meets visitors in the Comfort reception area; Architectural concept for the rennovation of Sandyford premises. Below: The Comfort Seating team celebrate their launch after their first chair is manufactured in the UK.

us the space and flexibity to house our offices, warehousing, production lines and showroom but most importantly, remain in Ayrshire.”

accommodate the warehousing and production areas – with full access to HGV vehicles at the loading docks.

Eventually, after much research and consideration, Gareth acquired the old Sanydford Meats packing plant near Prestwick. Not one to shy away from a challenge, the building had been stripped by vandals and the interior resembled a scene from a zombie apocalypse movie. But, with 60,000 sq ft of useable space, it had the capacity needed for Comfort’s expansion, and with ‘views to die for’ across the Firth of Clyde to the Isle of Arran, it took only an hour of contemplation one April evening on the building’s roof to convince Gareth that this was where the next phase should begin. “It just felt right.”

“This is the biggest thing I’ve ever done, and I would be lying if I said it wasn’t frightening when I consider how much is involved. But I have a fantastic squad behind me and support from the Comfort Seating head office. This is a team affair.”

Plans to develop the building are already well underway. The old refrigeration units have now been removed, and the interior no longer feels like a dystopian nightmare. A clean-up crew have cleared the spaces, assessed the damage done by vandalism and a design team has initiated plans for the renovation.

as time has gone on, I’ve realised that the ‘stuff’ isn’t what really makes me happy.

The elevation that overlooks the stunning Ayrshire coast will be redesigned to house the furniture showroom and offices, with a vast glass frontage to capitalise on both the views and natural light. A rooftop meeting area is being considered to take full advantage of the scenic location. The rear of the building will

Has it been worth it – and did you get that Red Ferrari you desired as a child we ask? “When I started out, I was a young guy, no different from any other tracky-bottom wearing lad, getting excited over flash cars. It’s what inspired me to work hard. But as time has gone on, I’ve realised that the ‘stuff’ isn’t what really makes me happy. I did achieve my red car dream, but what I’ve discovered is that it’s more about your legacy – that you can be proud of what you’ve created. It’s not always been easy and I’ve made my mistakes along the way, but I have a loyal team of people around me who are also proud of being part of creating a successful business. I’ve gone from being a bit of a ‘Del-boy’ to someone who understands the true value of what hard work, good people and collaboration can achieve.”

Still under 40, it’s maybe a premature question – but we ask, what will be your happy ending, Gareth? “In the next year we’ll be celebrating our flagship chair, Ergohuman, selling over a million units, and bringing manufacturing to Ayshire is a dream come true for me. But after that... well, that’s a tough one. I’m getting on a bit now so perhaps racing Ferraris will have to be sidelined. I always imagined I would form an animal charity – do something entirely different when I eventually retire, but that’s a long way off. I have Europe to conquer first.” “Watch this space.”

Quality & Style In Ayrshire



Ayrshire Pets

Photo Credit - Scott Johnstone

Jacqueline & Marley



Age? 46 Favourite Food? Crunchy peanut butter, chopped banana on brown toast with a latte all the flavours together is heaven Favourite past-time? Zumba - a sure fire way to feeling invincible Favourite part of Ayrshire? Culzean - astoundingly beautiful Favourite place to sleep? My Tempur mattress best investment yet Celebrity Lookalike? According to a few people Angelina Jolie

Age? 7 Favourite Food? Cheese Favourite past-time? Sleeping Pet name? Marls Favourite part of Ayrshire? Doonfoot Prom a million different smells Favourite place to sleep? At my feet or any of our beds Celebrity Lookalike? Mick Hucknall

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n emotional drive to stop the UK Charity, CLIC Sargent from closing the doors of Ayrshire’s much loved children’s respite house - Malcolm Sargent House in Prestwick was kick started on June 6th this year, when charity bosses from London flew up to the house with a surprise announcement that they may close the house and it’s service provision, after a short consultation period of 30 days. The shock decision came as the UK charity announced a plunging deficit in their national income. Staff and volunteers were devastated, followed by a community in dismay. 7 loyal volunteers including myself, who were outraged by the decision decided very quickly to set up the MSH Committee ( known in-house as M7); dedicated to save the house and this vital provision.There were peaceful demonstrations on the streets of Ayrshire during the consultation period, local and national radio and media coverage, offline and online petitions with a staggering number of over 20,000 signatures opposing it’s closure. We battled endlessly alongside the community however on 27th July, the Board of Trustees for CLIC Sargent concluded, at the end of the consultation period, that the house would close, that this wonderful service provision would be terminated and all staff were to be made redundant. The Committee immediately changed our strategy from #SAVEMSH to #BUYMSH. This respite provision for children, young people and

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their families suffering with cancer is too important to let go. The house has such historical importance in the community and indeed throughout Ayrshire, since it’s opening by the Late Princess of Wales, Lady Diana in 1989. Families all over the UK have enjoyed holidays here and latterly the house also offered bereavement weeks to families - offering a vital haven to those who most needed it. Since that dreaded day - July 27th , massive campaigning commenced under the legal supervision of Robert Honeyman at The McKinstry Company who are providing their services to us and the Appeal on a pro bono basis. Robert said “ I am a partner at The McKinstry Company and have worked in the principal Ayr office for the last 19 years. My Firm has a long standing connection with Malcolm Sargent House.” He added “ I was devastated to hear the news that MSH was to close and the loss of this wonderful service to children and their families at a time of great need. I have three children and have been fortunate that they have always enjoyed good health. For those who have not had such good fortune it is essential that we are able to offer support and a service like MSH to bring some relief and enjoyment to the lives of those children less fortunate. I knew that we could not let the light go out for MSH” We are lucky to have such legal strength behind us and The McKinstry Company is presently setting up our new charity with OSCR, named - Ayrshire Holidays Dream Foundation

YOUR COMMUNITY (MSH). We will rename the house and service provision at a later date as we are no longer, legally allowed to continue the use of the MSH name. The Committee has been working around the clock with extraordinarily tight timescales and at an extremely fast paced momentum. We have elected a crucial and enviable Board of Trustees; each with a pertinent set of skills to drive this Appeal forward alongside us. We have launched a new #BUYMSH APPEAL website and business plan/funding model - all thanks to the extremely creative and talented design team at VisualizeThis in Irvine. Owner David McColm and his wife Michele have been loyal supporters of MSH for many years and needless to say jumped on board without question to help us out. We have a fast growing social media following on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to drive our campaign forward and keep the community updated with our progress on a daily basis. While awaiting our charity registration, we had to set up a JustGiving account to receive online donations however we have additionally recently set up offline donation points throughout Ayrshire with our new yellow Appeal collection buckets and cans. Again, we are fortunate to have the support of William Duncan & Co Accountants, who are facilitating our fundraising through their new charity set up only this year - William Duncan & Co. Charitable Trust, with Robert Fergusson, Managing Director looking after our financial affairs and kindly accepting our invitation to join our Board of Trustees. “Ayrshire has been extremely good to William Duncan & Co. and our whole team over the years and there are many good things happening in the County to make it even better and more vibrant place to live and work. So, when you hear that a place like Malcolm Sargent House is closing it stops you in your tracks to ask why? This facility has been part of the fabric of the Ayrshire community for almost 30 years and it just seems unacceptable that it should close. My own family had a brush with cancer a couple of years ago when my son went through treatment which is not a pleasant process. Thankfully his story is one of success but nevertheless experiencing this was an eye opener for us and one that makes you very aware of how stressful it is for any family. If Ayrshire can provide a haven for families to be together, have a break and make memories which can become so important then I am privileged to be part of that,” explained Robert. We are delighted to have Robert on board, his son is an inspiration to us all and even during his treatment in 2015 he very kindly fundraised for us raising money for Malcolm Sargent House. A selfless individual who has battled through cancer with sheer courage and determination. It is the people in the Community who are the true ‘Guardians of MSH’. They are the heart of this #BUYMSH APPEAL and we owe them our commitment to fight on to ensure that we make

this happen. Every day is a battle, on all levels but a battle worth fighting for. The dedication shown by each and every member of our Committee on a 24hr basis, the loyal support from everyone in the Ayrshire Community and indeed the Community of Scotland and beyond, the words of encouragement from the families from throughout the UK, who have visited MSH over the years, the videos from young children who have had cancer and now thankfully in remission, who have shared their wonderful memories of MSH - they fuel our desire and passion to keep this essential respite provision in Ayrshire for children, young people and their families suffering with cancer in the UK. What If? - we have set out in our Plan our aspirations for the acquisition of MSH and the continuity of the great service that was delivered at MSH. Those aspirations drive the Committee and our Trustees to deliver a new MSH for the children and their families of the UK who need this essential service for holiday respite. We have to recognise, however, that the acquisition of MSH is not entirely within our control. So what should we do if the sellers will not agree a deal with us and MSH, as we know it, is sold to a third party? A New Beginning - MSH, as a service and the memories it has created for so many, will never be lost and as a group we are committed to preserving that. Where we are unable to secure the acquisition of the original MSH we already have contingency plans in place to acquire a site for the service to allow a new MSH to be formed. This will be developed with input from the Ayrshire community, drawing on the memories of families who benefitted from the original House and importantly will capture the spirit, love and relaxed surroundings that enveloped Malcolm Sargent House. Whatever road we have to travel the wonderful service that was provided at MSH will continue and our Committee and Trustees are dedicated to ensuring that with your support this will be delivered for all children, young people and their families, who so desperately need this service. Fundraising is key to success - we need to keep raising money on a daily basis. We have numerous events coming up over the next few months so please look out for them on social media or in the local press. Presently we have raised a substantial amount with the help of the community through JustGiving. Additionally, we have corporate donors, pledgers and sponsors running alongside our community fundraising but we need to up the momentum. Some have been extremely generous, gifting the Appeal £20k and above. We would encourage and welcome more corporate pledgers to come forward, as Ambassadors of MSH and or pending on your commitment, we will be offering Patronage for our new charity. Please get in touch with me at buymsh@ or call 0791 7577463. We only have one shot at this - let’s do it! Quality & Style In Ayrshire





mother and daughter from Ayr will head out to Nepal in October this year to take on the challenge in hiking to Everest Base Camp and onwards to scale Lobuche East at a height of 6119m. Maxine, mum to three girls, and one of her daughters Saskia (17) will be taking on this challenge in aid of #BUYMSH APPEAL - a campaign and new charity set up with the primary goal to buy the vital respite provision for children and young people with cancer; Malcolm Sargent House in Prestwick from the charity, CLIC Sargent. The duo are no strangers to climbing mountains for charity, having hiked up Ben Nevis, Scafell Pike, Snowdon, Ben Lomond and many more. Maxine also set up a team of trekkers who summited Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa last year, raising £150k for Malcolm Sargent House. More recently, Maxine took on the 24hr 3 Peaks Challenge with the SBF Team for the local charity, Ayrshire Sportsability. However, she has never hiked above 6000m in an area of such high altitude risk. “I’ve always dreamed of climbing Everest but I’m not experienced enough to actually attempt to summit Everest at over 8000m - clearly with the obvious publicised dangers that Everest has to offer, even the most experienced of climbers. We will be delighted to reach Base Camp and to hopefully attempt a successful summit of Lobuche East - a far more technical ice climb for us, requiring abseiling on its descent.” said Maxine. The journey will certainly be more challenging than others they have experienced - with recent disasters that hit the region in April 2014, when the Khumbu IceFall collapsed on a group of Sherpas killing all 16 Nepalese guides and only last year where an earthquake shook the region, killing at least 9000 people and causing an Avalanche that killed 19 people at Everest Base Camp.

They will trek with 360 Expeditions and their leader will be the experienced guide Jo Bradshaw. Jo summited Everest for the first time in May this year. She was making her first attempt to summit in 2015, when the earthquake struck and she had to be airlifted off the mountain by helicopter - it’s at this point that Maxine was following Jo’s expedition blog, and decided that this was the team she wanted to hike to Everest with. They will be joined by their friend Jennifer Forbes from London who also hiked up Kilimanjaro and other like minded trekkers from around the UK . Jo Bradshaw - “ After my experiences at Camp 1 (6100m) on Mt Everest during the earthquake that hit Nepal in April 2015, many would have forgiven me for not heading back. ‘Never give up’ is a saying that is always in my mind and in my role as and Expedition Guide for our forthcoming Everest Base Camp and Lobuche East climb in October, I’ll be encouraging all of my team to dig deep and keep putting one foot in front of the other.” Maxine added, “I have self-funded this trek for both Saskia and I which was very expensive but as it is a lifetime wish for me, I feel it’s worth every penny. All money we raise will go directly to this great appeal therefore we hope that everyone will give generously and maybe consider the challenges that we will come up against in reaching the summit. One of the hardest challenges for me personally is leaving my 7 year old daughter, Lemoni behind for 3 weeks.” Saskia is only 17 years old and a S6 pupil at Wellington School in Ayr. This will be a tough challenge for a teenager “I loved climbing Kilimanjaro last year so I am really excited about this challenge. Of course I’m anxious about what happened in 2015 but I’m really looking forward to meeting the Sherpas and taking some great photos along the way” said Saskia.




fter six very enjoyable years at Shawlands Academy in Glasgow I started my four year course in Optometry at the end of which I completed my pre-registration year in Cumbernauld and after passing the final qualifying examinations at the end of the year was let loose on the public. Determined that I was going to be self employed I did locum work all over central Scotland to finance the opening of the first practice at the National Savings Bank at Cowglen, Glasgow which was followed shortly after by Stewarton, Irvine and Largs. Other practices were bought and sold over the period but for the last 25 years Stewarton Irvine and Largs have been the core of the business and we are delighted approaching our 40th anniversary to be one of the longest established independent opticians in Ayrshire. Outwith Optometry at Shawlands Academy I was fortunate to learn to play rugby as my skills at football were “limited”, but also had an excellent athletics career on track, field and cross-country with Bellahouston Harriers. On moving to live in Ayrshire and open our Stewarton practice I joined Stewarton Round Table and served a year there as chair. I then moved my rugby playing from Shawlands FP to Kilmarnock but as the business grew and Saturday working became inevitable the boots were hung up. I still continue on the committee and had the honour of being club president. Having been through three recessions I am delighted that the business continues to grow and that we retain high numbers of patients and attract more mainly by recommendation. Our long standing clients often tell us that our appeal is our long serving staff and seeing the same smiling faces at each visit! Apart from me when I’m in grumpy mode! Our staff in all three practices have all been there for lengthy periods and work well together with the

same aim - to provide first class eyecare and top class products in a relaxed, professional and friendly atmosphere. I have and continue to enjoy my career in Optics with quite a few landmarks along the way. I was chairman of two of the largest buying/marketing groups for independent opticians in Scotland, one ten year term with the Scottish Optical Purchasing Group and a similar period as chair of Provision Ltd. The highlight of my professional career was recently to serve as chairman of Optometry Scotland, the body which represents the interests of all ophthalmic and dispensing opticians in Scotland. This involved dealing with the Health Minister at Holyrood, senior civil servants at St Andrews House and Health Board officials at various venues throughout Scotland - quite an eye opener! I have also served as chair of Ayrshire and Arran Area Optical Committee, and am still currently vice chair. Looking forward, optics is opening up many new challenges and opportunities. In Irvine and Stewarton, with Largs to follow early next year we have invested in top of the range OCT’s (Optical Coherence Tomographers) which basically do an MRI style scan of the eyes enabling the optician to see what is happening within the retina, not visible even with our cameras. It allows us to detect small changes years before they would become visible and allow appropriate action or referral to be done. It is particularly useful in cases of early macular changes and in glaucoma detection. Optometry has come a long way since I started and we now have developed different skills in specialist areas like diabetic eye screening, pre and post operative cataract clinics, low visual aids, dry eye clinics and children’s visual assessment. We are about to celebrate our 40th year in business and with all the exciting developments taking place I intend to be part of it for some time to come! Quality & Style In Ayrshire




try really hard to be a good person. And by ‘good person’ I don’t really mean kind, or charitable, or thoughtful – though when I can muster the energy, I make an effort to be all of these things (listen, I’m a Slytherin; it’s not in my nature). I just mean that when I’m in social situations, I try not to be a fanny. I try to be self-aware, to keep myself in check so that nobody walks away from an encounter with me muttering, “Well, she was a dick”. I take an interest in other people; I fight the urge to punch the air and scream “YAAAAAAAAAAAS!” when I’m right about something and the other person is wrong; I think before I speak. Obviously I have wildly inappropriate thoughts all the time and spend much of my internal life quelling knee-jerk reactions in the manner of Homer strangling Bart, but I’ve learned to live with my secret true self. Grown fond of it, even. But recently, I had a thought that made even me side-eye myself. Let me paint the scene for you. I was in the French Alps to write a travel piece, and the place I was staying in was absolutely gorgeous: snow-capped mountains, cute wooden chalets, rolling green hills. I was given the opportunity to try things that I’d never done before, such as skiing, mountain biking and, well, exercising in general. The final activity

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of the trip? Tandem paragliding off a cliff. Here I was being strapped into a harness on a perfect hot summer’s day, ready to basically fly through the Alpine air and breathe in panoramic views of my idyllic surroundings. But when I was told I couldn’t bring my phone with me for the ride, the wee arsehole in my head piped up like a surly teenager, “What’s the point in even doing it then?” Obviously I batted the thought away. Obviously I knew what the point was. I was just taking the huff because like many of my generation - and almost all of the generation below me - I’ve started to believe that if a tree falls in the woods and nobody is around to Instagram it, not only did it not happen, but that tree was a total idiot for not realising how many likes it could have got if it had just, like, timed its fall a bit better. It’s not that I overshare my life online; if you looked at my social media accounts, you wouldn’t think I was the kind of person who feels the need to document absolutely everything. But my camera roll tells a different story, with its endless stream of dinner plates and buildings shot from jaunty angles. When I log into Facebook, I live in constant fear of hitting publish on ‘Hi Natasha, this was your Thursday night’, lest anyone see the 50 nailfies (yep,


LIVING IN THE MOMENT a selfie of your nails) I took the night before. Just because I don’t share it all, doesn’t mean I haven’t been doing it – whipping my phone out, mindlessly snapping away. I notice it at this time of year especially, when I’m travelling to a new country or getting out and about in the sun. Instead of actively appreciating and living in the moment, I’m looking at everything through my phone screen, scanning my surroundings to make a call on what’s worth sharing. The inherent message I’m sending is “Look at all this great stuff I’m doing” when the reality of the situation is that half the time I’m not even doing it properly, not really; I’m just viewing it through my phone, the same way you are when the picture pops up on your screen. And you’re obviously seeing the curated version of my life. The filtered one, where I only eat in nice restaurants, visit interesting places and wear fancy dresses. You’re not seeing me in my pyjamas, the ones with the legs that are too short because they’ve shrunk in the wash. You’re not seeing my PMS face, with the angry chin spot that rears its ugly head at the same time every month without fail. You’re not seeing the shit, lazy dinner I pull together when I’ve just done a 12-hour shift and can’t be arsed #eatingclean.

Bloggers are often criticized for purveying an unattainable lifestyle to impressionable young people; for being so concerned with aesthetics that even the mundane everyday act of drinking a cup of coffee is elevated to a style statement – cup of coffee in one corner, designer sunglasses perched in the other, inspirational quote in the caption. But we’re all doing it. We’re all turning ourselves into brands, even if we don’t have the followers to semi-justify our actions. One minute we’re scrolling through our feeds and feeling a pang of life envy when we spot someone who always seems to be on holiday, the next we’re posting our own hotdog legs. I’m not saying we should all stop sharing photos of nice things. I don’t think the desire to present ourselves in our best light is particularly new – it’s a natural human trait that we’re now expressing on new platforms, and that’s fine. But I do think that when you take yourself out of an enjoyable moment because you’re more concerned with how other people will react to it than your own simple pleasure of experiencing it, you’ve got a problem. Paragliding off that cliff and taking 20 minutes to enjoy the sensation of floating through the air without filming it, or taking a selfie, was so liberating. So don’t let the coffee go cold. Don’t be a fanny. Quality & Style In Ayrshire




Photo Credit | KSG Photography

From Irvine To Hollywood and Back BY: SERGIO BURNS

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lood blurs his vision, a shadow, large and threatening, moves toward him. His body screams at him to stop, rest. He must go on, he can’t give up, the baying audience has expectations.

others were being wined and dined at the Albany Hotel, didn’t impress. To Keenan’s surprise Big Rab turned him down, and a furious Keenan tried to take his fish tea back.

He loves the movies, it could be a scene from a film : Martin Scorcese’s Raging Bull or Robert Wise’s Somebody Up There Likes Me. It could also be a metaphor for Rab Affleck’s life, fought hard against great difficulties. A man who was raised tough, one of a family of 11, in Irvine. A man who has no pretensions, a sharp wit, who talks articulately – with expletives – about the powerful influence of circumstance. Who reminds us we don’t live in an existential vacuum, we don’t all have choices.

Rab Affleck finally signed with Tommy Gilmour and began his professional boxing career with a win against Mick Jay at the St Andrews Sporting Club, Glasgow, on April 22nd, 1974. In a relatively brief professional career he won a total of 15 out of 20 fights. He also fought for the British Light Heavyweight Championship against Bunny Johnson, a man with 63 fights behind him.

“You expected to become a street fighter,” He says of circumstance. “The auld man was a fighter. My auld man used to say if you like to be a hard man go into the boxing ring, put the gloves on and see how you are with a guy the same size and the same weight. That’s where the real men are. He was right. But I wasn’t interested in boxing, it wasn’t on my agenda. At the time I was looking to do... wrestling.” It was a man called George Watson who convinced the reluctant Rab to climb into the boxing ring. Initially, it wasn’t a happy experience. “First time I went to Jimmy Murray at the Cardowan club (Glasgow) I got punched up and doon the place,” Affleck admits. “I got...two black eyes, bust nose. But, at that time Jimmy was using me, and I knew he was using me...because he had fighters training for titles, light heavyweights and, I was the punch bag.” After a brief amateur career, becoming Scottish Heavyweight Champion by knocking out Ian Crawford in 1972, Affleck decided he wanted to turn pro. His trainer, Billy Ward, thought he was ‘nuts’, and tried to convince him to wait and gain more experience. But Affleck was determined. “Jimmy Murray...come up on a Sunday,” Affleck chuckles as he tells the story. “The umbrella, the briefcase, the big long coat. I said, ‘I am no turning pro with him. ‘ My father says, ‘leave him with me and I’ll shout you through.’ Murray said : ‘I am here about Big Rab and I want to know if he would turn pro with us?’ My father said : ‘I’ll tell ye whit tae dae, gie me twenty quid and he’s yours.’ So, he got his twenty quid and shouted ‘He’s aw yours Rab!’ I said ‘Jimmy... I am no signing, the best thing you can dae is just walk oot that door.’ ‘Whit? Whit?’ Says Murray. ‘I just gave yer da twenty quid for you to sign.’” Murray, who once trained former lightweight world champion Jim Watt, was informed that Rab’s father had hot-footed it to The Eglinton pub. By the time he got there the money had gone, it was in the barman’s till. There is much laughter from Affleck at the plight of the well-dressed Murray. Peter Keenan also tried to sign Affleck. But buying the big man a fish tea at the local chippie, when

“I got knocked out by Bunny Johnson in four rounds,” The memory is painful for the proud warrior but he is philosophical. “I did what I had tae dae I fought for a British wis whit wis in my head...I wanted to win a Scottish title, I wanted to be good enough to fight for a British title whether ah won it or no didnae matter …....and then my eyes were bad so I got knocked back for my licence the following year.” As he reflects on today’s crop of fighters, he recognises everything flows from one point to another in the overall journey of life. The people we meet and come into contact with, the actions taken, and that simple thing called fate and/or circumstance “Ah wis oot there working on building sites,” He told Ayrshire Magazine of early training regimes. “They’re getting groomed they’re getting...the best of sparring. I hardly did any sparring, the only time I saw a ring was when I was in it. But boxing was good to me...saved me a life of crime...a journey tae the jails and it changed my whole life. If it wisnae for boxing I wouldn’t be here today talking tae you, I wouldn’t have made over 50 movies and television so I owe it a lot that way.” Rab Affleck is a refreshingly frank and open man. When his wife died at the age of 32, leaving him with three kids, he found it hard and briefly turned to drink. But once again, forced to dig deep, he turned things around for the sake of his children and had the strength to hold the family together. In 1990 – 11 years after Rab Affleck was forced into retirement - Johnny Mullen, who ran the boxing club at Springside, was visited by a film crew. They were looking for a fighter for a film they were making starring Liam Neeson. Mullen suggested Affleck but The Big Man thought it was a wind up and threatened to wreck the boxing club if it was. “Right enough I met Liam Neeson and Joanne Whalley-Kilmer (now Joanne Whalley) who played his wife,” He recalls, and the boxing club stayed intact. “So, I spoke to the director and he says you want to have a wee spar with Liam and I said nae bother. They said we could dae wae you... as a fight consultant.” Affleck, working with Liam Neeson and director Quality & Style In Ayrshire


Photo Credit | KSG Photography


David Leyland, soon began to wonder about the actor hired to play the fighter in the movie. Leyland’s hunt for the right actor had proved fruitless, however, and it gradually became apparent to him that the man for the part of Cutty Dawson, a seasoned, ageing fighter, was, in fact, already in the camp : Rab Affleck. Given the role, he tells of a night out to meet the author of ‘The Big Man’, the book the film was made from, the now deceased William McIlvanney. McIlvanney, coincidently, had once taught Affleck at school and a meeting was engineered between the two when the author arrived. “‘Aw Rab I haven’t seen you for a while how are you keeping? You’re looking great.’” Affleck remembers McIlvanney greeting him. “I said : ‘Same tae yerself, whit are ye daein in here?’ He said : ‘I’ve got this film... they’re doing a film based on my book.’ I went, ‘That’s great,’ and he said, ‘ What are you doing in here? Are ye the bouncer, ye bouncing in here?’. ‘Naw’ I said, ‘I’m playing Cutty Dawson.’ He nearly fainted, he was in shock. We had a few drinks, and he said : ‘When I wrote that book I was writing the Cutty Dawson part round your father. I remember your father, I remember the things your father used to do.’” Affleck paused for a few seconds smiling as he remembered his old teacher, someone, he said, who always had time for you. Didn’t matter who you were. Then thinking about his father he said: “You know all the Ayrshire toons, they’ve all got their heroes.” Rab Affleck has now appeared in many top movies and television shows. These include Layer Cake, Gangs of New York, and on television Dr Who and Still Game. He has appeared with superstars

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including Liam Neeson, Leonardo DiCaprio, Sir Daniel Day-Lewis, Ford Kiernan and Greg Hemphill. “Enjoyed Gangs of New York, it was good,” he reminisced. “Me and Big Bill Barclay were inseparable when we got over there, it was terrific. We were only meant to be over there for a week but we ended up over there for...six weeks.” We ask him about his latest part as Ronnie Anderson in the 2016 movie Breakdown. What can the general public expect from this offering? “Nothing,” he says deadpan, the timing and delivery of the tongue-in-cheek aside perfect, bringing laughter from those present. He laughs himself, then corrects. “Naw it’s a good movie it has...a really good story to it.” He then mentions Breakdown’s director Jonnie Malachi, so fascinated by Affleck’s own unique story he is now working on a documentary about the Irvine man. A man who has never forgotten his humble origins or his home town, Irvine. “It’s the people,” he says candidly. “You’re dealing with a community, a town, you’re dealing with the people you grew up with. There is nothing better than coming hame tae yer ain wee place, and it doesn’t matter where ye go in the world.” He reflects for a few seconds and adds : “My life has all been through circumstance, it has no been planned.” Rab Affleck is Rab Affleck. The master of his own universe, an incomparable, irascible, enigmatic character. Driven, not by ego or money, but simply by being Rab Affleck. A somewhat existential take on the circumstances that have produced one of Scotland’s finest boxers, an Ayrshire ‘superstar’ actor, and above all, a working class hero.

























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here’s no doubt that Ayrshire is a popular destination for tourists. People come from all over the U.K. and beyond to find out more about Robert Burns and appreciate the beautiful, rugged coastline. Some of the best sunsets in the world are here to enjoy, alongside glorious, sandy beaches. We’re lucky to have some of the best hotels, restaurants and food in the world, thanks to Ayrshire’s entrepreneurs, famers and fishermen. We could get carried away boasting about the charms of some of Scotland’s finest golf courses and our stunning historic houses and estates, such as Culzean Castle and Country Park and Dumfries House. Thanks to a rich and close-knit farming tradition, we have lush countryside and rolling green hills, but after years of industrial decline and the closing of collieries and factories, what do the villages of North and East Ayrshire have to offer in terms of tourist appeal? The answer is more than you might think. Mauchline is 8 miles south east of Kilmarnock and has a fascinating heritage. Robert Burns spent a lot of time here. His wife, Jean Armour, was from Mauchline and it was home to other colourful

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BY: SHIRLEY HUSBAND characters that are now part of international language, such as “Holy Wullie”. For anyone with a deeper interest in the town’s local history, there are gripping and bloodthirsty tales galore from the Reformation and the adventures of the Covenanters. Mauchline is situated on a gentle slope about 1 mile from the River Ayr, which flows south of the village. After an easy wander down to its banks, there’s an interesting walk to be found. Lining the riverbank, there are red sandstone caves, some of which served as an exciting backdrop to the adventures of desperate Covenanters fleeing Royalist troops. Other parts of the soft stone of the riverbank display swathes of prehistoric rock art, well known to experts worldwide. Nobody really knows what the intricate patterns of Neolithic ‘cup and ring’ markings were created for, but they may indicate homage to our ancient religion or even be an early form of writing and recording. Above these mysterious caves and the tranquil river walk, towers one of Ayrshire’s most impressive achievements and best-known inland landmarks. At 177 feet or 54m, the Ballochmyle Viaduct’s CONT.

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railway track is the U.K’s highest, surprisingly higher than that of the Forth Road Bridge. It was finished in 1850 and is still the one of the longest masonry arches ever constructed anywhere in the world. It has even featured on the big screen, its height adding to the nail-biting chase in Mission Impossible, where Tom Cruise crosses the viaduct, struggling to hang on to a high speed train, whilst battling Jean Reno in his helicopter. So who was the amazing mind behind this impressive feat of Victorian engineering? As testament to the accomplishments of the Industrial Age and as a credit to Ayrshire, the Ballochmyle Viaduct was designed by John Miller, one of the greatest civil engineers of his time, often described as ‘Scotland’s Brunel’. John Miller was born and educated in Ayr and became one of the Victorian era’s most respected engineers. He was responsible for the design of the Glasgow to Edinburgh line and the Glasgow to Carlisle route, amongst many other achievements. The design of Ballochmyle Viaduct was brave and ingenious. The steep, rocky landscape on either side of the gorge over the river was used as support for a wooden structure, around which the arches were constructed. Local, red sandstone was used for the majority

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of the construction, while harder freestone from Dundee was used for the critical arched rings. Over 166 years later, it’s still in use. Refurbished and upgraded just over ten years ago, it can handle the heaviest of freight trains, travelling at speeds that John Miller could only have dreamed of. The viaduct has been a listed landmark since 1971 and A-listed since 1989. In 2014, it was designated a ‘National Historical Civil Engineering Landmark’ by the Institute of Civil Engineers and a plaque was unveiled. Not only is the bridge a source of engineering pride for Ayrshire, but it also has majesty and grace, which will be there for generations to come. It lends beauty to the landscape and to views of the River Ayr where, long before it was built, Burns was inspired to write his famous poem, “The Bonnie Lass of Ballochmyle”. So, if you’re looking for something a little bit different as a visitor to the area, a walk just outside Mauchline and down to this stretch of the River Ayr won’t disappoint. The caves are there to explore and as you wonder which ancient Scot carved the patterns of spirals and dots which are a mystery and a wonder, don’t forget to look upwards to the stone arches towering above and to the achievement of an Ayrshire Scot of whom we can be very proud.

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Quality & Style In Ayrshire


Photo Credit - KSG Photography

TALENT SPOTTER 66 Quality & Style In Ayrshire


Full name - Emily Sophia Binnie Job title - Postgraduate student in Music Industries at the University of Glasgow Age - 23 Where you stay/ where you are from? I stay in a converted farm house in East Ayrshire, which my siblings and I are very grateful for, as it means there are no neighbours close by to annoy whilst we practice playing instruments! So, what’s your story? I was always very quiet during my school years. Playing a role in drama or producing sound through a musical instrument was my way of being heard. My confidence as an individual began to grow as I was made aware of people out with my family having faith in me to succeed. This first arose when I was selected for a CBBC children’s programme in 2009, and having the opportunity to become surrounded by likeminded people with the similar love for acting enabled me to become more confident. This continued on with music - and although drama was something I had been interested in throughout my childhood, music has always been the most predominant subject I enjoyed. My earliest memory of enjoying music was at the age of five, when my parents took me to the Royal Concert Hall in Glasgow to see Vanessa Mae the violinist, which I remember apart from the final piece, because I had fallen asleep! Finding as instrument I enjoyed to play was definitely a case of trial and error though. After attempting to play the violin and piano, it wasn’t until I picked up my first alto saxophone at age 11, that I felt I could really progress with my playing. My secondary school teacher Jim Baines was a strong influence, as he suggested I join the ‘Stewarton Winds’ adult band, who I performed with in the National Concert Band Festival at the Royal Academy of Music in London. This opened my ears to a whole other dimension in music, which was being part of a concert band sound. Having the opportunity to play both traditional and contemporary styles of music with ‘Stewarton Winds’ was an aspect I really enjoyed, and was the reason I decided to continue my playing at university.

Studying music at the University of Aberdeen was the best experience of my life so far. Having to move away from home and live in a new where I knew no one was the push I needed to meet new people and improve my academic and playing ability. For me, going to university has provided me with information and advice on so many careers within music, due to having the opportunity to talk to the Phd students and being able to book appointments with the university’s career service advisors. I had looked into so many job possibilities before deciding to study a postgraduate course, but I will be honest and say that I’m still not quite sure which path I’d like to go down. Our generation is at such an advantage nowadays as we have so many options available to us, with all the information at our fingertips - however that means choosing one career path is so much more difficult! Who is your role model, and why? My parents. My dad built up an established wealth management business from nothing. On a professional level he is so driven, and I hope to have those qualities with my own career in the future. And I wouldn’t be playing music today if it weren’t for my mum dedicating her time to taking me to countless band rehearsals and private lessons. I couldn’t ask for more supportive parents! What is the difference between you and everyone else? My multidimensional taste in music. This can range from jazz to R&B, which makes for an unorthodox sax player! What is your superpower? I’d say it would be to shock and surprise. I secretly love it when people have watched me perform on stage, and have made comments on my small stature and how they never could have imagined me as being a saxophonist. I like the unexpected. What do you have coming up in the near future? Aside from further study in music at Glasgow, I hope to teach saxophone and rejoin the adult band in Stewarton if they would have me back! I feel I have learned so much during my 12 years of playing, especially having been taught by Richard Ingham at university, who is currently the director of the XVI World Saxophone Congress. I would love to give something back to aspiring saxophone players.

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ollywood have been a long standing staple of the Ayrshire music and wedding scene for many years. The three members have been playing together for decades at this point in time, meaning their combined years of talent outnumber that of most wedding bands you will find these days. Having known and played together before the band even formed, the three members (David, Walter and Drew) have experienced a multitude of musical eras come and go which has helped them amass their 90 plus song setlist that is enjoyable for all at a wedding. Ranging from the sixties and up to the present pop hits, there is truly something for everyone to enjoy and spend the night on the dance floor. They’ve brought this setlist to multiple venues, clubs and hotels all over Scotland. The band also appreciates that there are more aspects to a live performance than just the music. This is why they have an impressive lighting set up that will be sure to wow you and your guests whilst providing the party atmosphere you want to accompany the music. On top of this they have a two-projector set up that provides video to go along with the music. Of course only the best instruments and playback equipment are used during their sets in order to provide the best sound for your event. Small things like this really add to the experience

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and show how the band goes above and beyond to provide things that many other wedding bands don’t. Hollywood have recently launched a new ‘70’s vs 80’s’ show package that is great for themed night or parties, or even for those with a love of the era and music. Featuring a vast collection of hits from the era will have you eager to go back in time and experience their audio/video spectacular that will reawaken the sights and sounds of what many deem the best musical period of all time. Ranging from Disco, Electronic, New Romantic to Classic Rock, there is something for everyone to enjoy and get nostalgic about. You won’t be forced to join in but costumes, competitions, giveaways and quizzes will determine which of the two decades comes out as the winner on the night. Music from the era will be provided before and after the show as well a quiz at the interval to keep the retro vibes going. The band are always more than happy to talk you through the event, especially weddings, to discuss the first dance, preferred music and songs to play in the background during intervals etc. Its very clear that Hollywood strive to bring you a night you’ll remember and make your special day as special as can be.








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Photo Credit - Averil Fraser





e all love music. Many of us enjoy watching TV shows about it and the talent and creativity that are there in the most ordinary people. We’re used to overused clichés, referring to singers as ‘true artists’ and loving it when they give us ‘that little shiver’.

Scott Nicol wasn’t interested in these shows or clichés 18 months ago when he started his music tuition business, Possibility Screams. However, he found more talent than he bargained for. A respected singer songwriter from Ayrshire, who has recorded and toured in the U.K. and America, he wanted to pass on his extensive experience to a younger generation. Scott initially focused on teaching his beloved guitar, but his innovative approach, which focuses on bringing out pupils’ originality, has led to an explosion in songwriting and creativity. With trademark enthusiasm, energy and musical ability, Scott has nurtured this talent and helped his students to shape their own songs. This summer, he’s truly turned their ideas and aspirations into reality, organising for accomplished Glasgow producer Sam Gallacher to record eight wonderful songs by Lori Smith, Evie Hughes, Emily and Charlotte Rutter, Shirley Husband, Scott Hewitt, Michael Crawford and Fraser Maxwell. These young songwriters are all exceptional and with stories to tell. They are, bar one, unbelievably

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under 16 and their heartfelt, uninhibited lyrics are deeply personal to them and their families. These lyrics and original musical ideas have been developed into beautiful songs, which will undoubtedly resonate with other young people. Their songs are truly from the heart and effortlessly translate into real emotion when they are heard. We can now tell you that they are to be released on an album, which is aptly titled “First Light”. It will be officially launched, by Possibility Screams, in Elliots in Prestwick at 6.30pm on November 6th, available on CD and iTunes from this date and a portion of each sale will be donated to Cash for Kids in Ayrshire. Scott believes this to be a unique venture, but one that he certainly hopes to repeat. He says, “I feel really honoured to be a part of this amazing project, which I hope will inspire every one of these amazingly talented artists to go on and fulfill their potential in music.” We don’t know what the future may hold for these young artists, but they’re on an interesting and exciting journey and can certainly be very proud of this special first achievement. For teasers of each track on Soundcloud and more information on Scott Nicol and Possibilty Screams, visit: http://

Rated one of Ayr’s best restaurants on TripAdvisor

Renowned for quality Scottish Meat & Fresh Produce

Stage Door Cafe Restaurant 12 Carrick Street Ayr, Ayrshire KA7 1NU tel. 01292 280444

The Hollybush Inn Restaurant Hollybush, By Ayr Ayrshire KA6 6EY tel. 01292 560580



Breakfast, coffee, lunch, supper, dinner, drinks & cocktails. Prestwick 74 Main St, Prestwick, Ayrshire KA9 1PA 01292 474146

Ayr Wellington Square 72 Fort St, Ayr KA7 1EH 01292 263607

Ardrossan Clyde Marina, 5 Dock Rd, Ardrossan, KA22 8DA 01294 471700

Ayrshire College evening classes are ideal for everyone! There’s something for everyone at Ayrshire College, with a whole host of new and exciting evening classes running for 2016/17.

which shows you how to cook for dinner guests. Or from late November you could learn how to cook Festive Foods.

Evening classes are held at all of the College’s main campuses and are a great opportunity to learn something completely new, develop yourself in your career, and enhance your CV at the same time.

There are plenty of other hospitality courses available such as Introduction to Sugar Craft, Cocktails and Canapés, the Young Chefs Club, Gastronomy: Creative Kitchen Chemistry, Introduction to Scottish Confectionery, and Kitchen Knife Skills.

Some courses are already underway but, fear not, there are many available that don’t start until late autumn. On the back of the incredible success the College has had with its ‘Ayrshire Bake Off’ evening class, which returns again this year, they have added a whole host of exciting hospitality courses to the mix. So if you fancy yourself as the next MasterChef you could sign up for the Supper Club, starting in October,

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While Professionals looking to gain qualifications to help further their career can work towards Professional Development Awards (PDAs). PDAs are designed for those already in a career who wish to extend or broaden their skills base.

“On the back of the incredible success the College has had with its ‘Ayrshire Bake Off’ evening class, which returns again this year, they have added a whole host of exciting hospitality courses to the mix.”

Ayrshire College is running two PDAs for 2016/17 in: Planning and Implementing Change, and Leadership. However, maybe youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re looking to pick up a new hobby? In which case have a think about enrolling on the Introduction to Cushion Making, Curtain Making, or Roman Blind Making courses. This is just a flavour of the evening classes running at Ayrshire College this year. For the full list of courses available please visit

All courses listed are subject to change so please get in touch with Wendy McFarland on 0300 303 0303 / wendy. to enquire about course availability.

Evening Classes 2016


Professional Development Awards, Highers, HNC and HND


Business and IT, Beauty Treatments, Cookery Skills


Spanish, Arts and Soft Furnishings, Baking and Cake Decorating

Apply now: Tel: 0300 303 0303

Ayrshire College is a registered Scottish charity. Reg No SC021177

Quality & Style In Ayrshire






magine the sun, big and round and orange, hanging in a clear blue sky above an exotic Spanish beach. Picture, Mojitos, five ingredient – white rum, sugar, lime juice, sparkling water and mint – Cuban cocktails, clasped in grateful hands as you laze on the sun lounger. The conversation is relaxed, almost soporific, while a soft breeze gently ripples waves on a lazy sea. It was in this idyllic setting that Juney Shoo, the Simply Stunning, shoes, clothing, bags and accessories retail business was born.

“Oh God!” June Fergusson, owner of Juney Shoo, laughs warmly when she remembers the day it all started for her. “That happened in Tenerife. We were sitting having cocktails (the aforementioned Mojitos), I was between jobs and I decided that my passion for shoes was going to develop into Juney Shoo. We came home and I booked into a shoe fair in London, because it was only shoes at that point we were interested in doing. So, I went to London to one of the trade shows, bought all my stock and, at that point, didn’t have premises to put it in. We then started the process of looking for shop premises and...opened in West Portland Street, Troon, right across from the Lido wine bar, and Juney Shoo was born.” The brand name itself was partly coined by Fergusson’s brother who used to call her ‘Juney’, the Shoo part is, somewhat, obvious. Born, and having grown up in Kilmarnock, Fergusson has a personality to match her business. She is extremely well-groomed, very personable and has a keen sense of fun. It is obvious from the get go she enjoys being with and talking to people. But don’t let the glamorous blonde front fool you, this

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is a successful Ayrshire businesswoman who understands the hardships of start-up as much as the successes.

She has travelled a long way in less than six years from the day she was thinking about her future under a blazing sun in Tenerife.

“It was quite difficult yeah, it was quite difficult because I didn’t really know anything about it when I started,” She admits about her early days in business. “But I loved it, I absolutely loved it and I still love it. I love the people. I like getting a customer in and letting them leave happy with their purchase, happy with the experience they have had. They are going to get a different experience coming into Juney Shoo than they are going to get on the High Street. Giving them that different experience, looking after them...and they come back.”

Her ethos is simple, keep pushing, keep looking for the new and exciting and keep things fresh, and above all, keep the customer satisfied.

In just short of six years, June Fergusson has worked relentlessly to build the company. Two years ago the hard work paid off when she brought the Juney Shoo brand to Ayr and opened a second shop, working from premises in Dalblair Road. Earlier this year she moved the business out to Hartfield House business centre on Racecourse View, close to the centre of town. “Coming here, we are offering free parking, a relaxed atmosphere, a wee glass of Prosecco or two or three,” She joked and laughed, but she is soon back to business. “We offer a nice friendly service, a bit of advice if they want. A lot of women lose confidence, they have a family...they put a bit of weight on, sometimes you need to give them a wee bit of confidence, guide them with how to change their style and things like that, so we enjoy doing that.” While she can be funny and friendly, Fergusson always has her eye to the business telescope. Her learning curve may have been steep but she has developed a sharp, business acumen and awareness.

“I oversee and do the buying and try and keep things different,” she explained. “I think it’s important...that you keep changing things because people get bored, your competition is online so you need to keep changing things and instead of expecting people to come in the door you’ve got to draw them in and that’s why coming here was a good thing. We do more events fashion shows and this building lends itself to that.” Plans are already well underway for a series of events leading up to Christmas, but apart from mentioning fashion shows Juney Shoo was giving very little away. She hinted, smiling, that information might be for Ayrshire Magazine’s next issue. But how does someone so obviously immersed in her business manage to relax? “Oh God!” She laughs again. “I have two wee dogs now, so I relax by taking the dogs out and going out walking. I love walking. I have two little Shichons (mixed breed Bichon Frise and Shih-Tzu) they are eight months old, they are just little fluffy things with loads of energy, they keep me fit, they keep me busy” Without the dogs June Fergusson would still be very busy. New, attractively designed, well-stocked premises out at the new Hartfield House Business Centre, fashion shows planned on the lead up to Christmas. She is energy, vitality, always looking Quality & Style In Ayrshire


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Photographer| Maggie Smith Model |Erinn Clark @ Colours Agency Stylist| Kelly Cripps MUA| Pauline Snow @ Make Up Lounge Troon Hair | Evie @ Rainbow Rooms International Ayr Location| Eglington Park Irvine

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bringing clarity to your celebrations ORR & SIMPSON

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at the races


1. Helen McGuire

2. Katrina Black

3. Agness Ross

Outfit from River Island

Dress from Dirty Little Style Bitch (DLSB)

Dress from Gorgeous Couture

Behavioural Health Worker

Pharmacy Dispenser

Admin Assistant

4. Nicola McCabe

5. Alana Simpson

6. Carol King

Dress from Coast

Outfit from John lewis

Art Teacher

Performance Reporting Manager

Outfit from River Island Programe manager

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E’S R I H S WARD AYR R O F ON FASHI RETAILER E ONLIN Stockists of Adini Casamia Celuu Cotton Brothers Diverso Dreams Epilogue Fenella Goddiva Joe Brown’s Lily and Me Marcangelo Mudd and Water

125 Main Street|Prestwick|KA9 1LA|01292 677991




30/08/2016 16:18






BEAUTY SHOOT BLUSHING BRIDE Blush tones on the skin look amazing, yet are still very soft and romantic. On Corinne’s fair skin I used more pink and tawney shades with a hint of coral for a colour pop and extra warmth. For highlighting I blended Clarins Instant Light Brush On Perfector to her nose, cheekbones, brow bone and Cupid’s bow, with soft contouring using Benefit’s Hoola Bronzer which works so well as it has a matte finish. On her eyes I blended Maybelline’s Colour Tattoo cream eyeshadow in Pink Gold over the lids and defined the crease and outer eye with Bourjois’s Colour Edition 24hr cream eyeshadow in Prune Nocturne. I emphasised the fullness of Corinne’s lips by lining with Bare Minerals Marvellous Moxie Lipliner in Exhilarated and filled in with Chanel’s Coco Rouge Shine Lipstick in a very aptly named Romance. For a polished finish I matched Corinne’s blush to her lips by buffing Bourjois’s creamy blush in Healthy Glow to the apples of her cheeks leaving a soft apricot glow.

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Photo Credit | Fiona Reid | Model | Corinne Hall





1. Sharon Smith

2. Lauren Clark

3. Fraser Burnside

Sharon’s bright smile and blue tones, shone through on a cloudy day in Irvine. She wore a blue-grey top from Zara, teamed with jeans from Dorothy Perkins. Her star necklace from Tesco stole the show as star prints and accessories will be in style this Autumn/Winter. She kept her shoes simple, with sandals from Next.

Chanel bag swinging by her side, I knew I had to stop Lauren to ask her about her outfit. With her army jacket from Topshop and Versace-esque t-shirt from Dagenham market, she oozed class and sass. She kept the rest of her outfit effortless and casual with jeans and a pair of Michael Kors slide on sandals.

Autumn is just around the corner and Fraser stepped out today wearing a ‘Fall’ toned burgundy jacket from River Island. His Next polo shirt partnered well with his smart but casual look, as it had hints of red in the collar. He wore Jeans from ASOS and white converse trainers from Schuh.

4. Margaret Quinn

5. Dan Crawford

6. Jodie Brown & Sophie Brolly

Wearing a blush coloured, linen blazer and trousers with a floral pattern, both from Dorothy Perkins, Margaret refreshed our memories that it was once summer! She wore a statement necklace from Primark and a cream messenger bag from Michael Kors.

Dan looked stylishly put together in his leather jacket and chelsea boots to match. He wore a khaki coloured t-shirt from ASOS, which is on trend as army shades come in to play this Autumn, and kept it cool but chic with black jeans from Primark and wearing shoes from River Island.

Whilst shopping, Jodie & Sophie stepped out in style on to the streets of Irvine. Jodie wore a pale pink bomber jacket from Topshop paired with black, ripped jeans from Miss Selfridge and a pair of complementary black and white Nike trainers. Sophie contrasted in her blue ensemble, wearing a striped shirt and high waisted jeans both from Topshop, adding a pop of colour with neon Adidas trainers from Foot Asylum.

Quality & Style In Ayrshire





Ayrshire has some of the most spectacular wedding venues in the world. From the stunning Ayrshire coast beach venues to country manors steeped in history amongst lush rolling hills and finally trendy boutique hotels set in our flourishing town centres. AM has taken the sting out of wedding outfit shopping by putting together a few looks suitable for all locations. 6. BY: KELLY CRIPPS 7.






5. 10.

1. Black string choker £5.00 @Matalan | 2. River Island camisole dress £32.00 @River Island | 3. Leopard belt £9.50 @ Marks and Spencer’s | 4. Black Circle Bag @Topshop | 5. Black sandals £45.00 @Wallis | 6. Velvet Flower Fascinator £22.00@Accessorize | 7. Ear Crawler £6.00@Accessorize | 8. Black Lace Trimmed Dress £139.00@Coast | 9. Embroidered Bag£75.00MatthewWilliamson@Debenhams | 10. Black Velvet Heels £35.00@RiverIsland

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14. 13.


11. Vivienne Westwood Orb Chain@Cherry Soda | 12. Purple Pleated Velvet Top £12.99 @New Look | 13. Serafina Flower Bag £55.00@Dune | 14. Pink Pleated Midi Skirt £35.00@ Dorothy Perkins | 15. Pink Velvet Heels@Topshop


HOURSTONS WISH LIST Hourstons Department Store in Ayr have everything from top to toe for the perfect wedding outfit for her, and bespoke tailoring in our menswear department to ensure he’s looking dapper too. For the finishing touches our beauty and skincare experts are always available to complete the perfect look in a relaxed and friendly environment. Our personalised wedding registry takes the stress out of choosing a perfect gift for the special day. Come and visit us today and meet our friendly, professional team!

Luna shoe from Moda in Pelle £99.95 | Top £120 skirt £130, dress £185 all by Vera Mont | Hats prices available on request | Coach Eau de perfume from £35

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1 Carleton Turrets, 1 Craigweil Road, Ayr KA7 2XH | 01292 269321 | Quality & Style In Ayrshire


FREE to attend Food Festival showcasing the best of local food & drink.

Saturday 17 September 2016 Jamieson Park - doors open at 11am.

SUPPORTED BY Thanks also to our sponsors, without whom this event would not be possible: William Tracey Group, J. H. Donald Ltd, Tesco PLC, Galston, Lanfine Estate, Brownings the Bakers, QTS, GAP Communications, The Scottish Holland Blind Company, R. W. McConnell & Son, G. Reid Opticians, Scottish Safety Supplies, Artisan Artworks, Clark Printing Ltd, V.G. Energy, McGivney Contracts, Lamlash House, Dustacco Engineering Ltd., Saxen Office Furniture Ltd, Loudoun Valley Trust, Loudoun Rotary Club, Loudoun Castle Estate, The Coffee Pot, East Ayrshire Council â&#x20AC;&#x201C; Vibrant Communities. Printing kindly donated by our sponsor Clark Printing Ltd, Galston.


Putting the ‘oo’ in food N

ewmilns Food Festival launches highlighting the best of Ayrshire’s food and drink. Food Festivals are great fun whether you’re a foodie or not and Scotland’s newest – the Newmilns Food Festival launches – on Saturday 17th September 2016 at Jamieson Park in Newmilns, East Ayrshire. With a host of producers selling local and artisan delights, it’s a great place to taste some of Scotland’s wonderful food and drink ranging from simply epic ice cream (we’ve tried it and it is!) to the best of Scottish Beef. Organised by the Newmilns Regeneration Association, the Festival is an opportunity to involve the local community in food. Shirley Wallace of Saxen Ltd, an Ayrshire Magazine regular, is on the organising committee: “As well as running the Festival, we’re partnering with local schools, in particular Loudoun Academy, to run a cookery competition highlighting the food talents we have in our schools. The competition’s prizes will be presented at the Festival. There’s going to be a real buzz about the place and we’d encourage you to visit.”

NEWMILNS FOOD FESTIVAL Saturday 17th September 2016 Jamieson Park, Newmilns 11 am to 5 pm FREE ENTRY Blue badge parking only onsite (KA16 9HZ) otherwise free Park & Ride at Loudoun Castle (KA4 8PE)

A top of the range hob and a hob & oven donated by local specialist electrical retailer, JH Donald, will be raffled on the day. The Festival’s even has a Newmilns version of that great British classic Bake Off - which sees male NRA Committee Members trying to please our Scottish Women’s Institute judge . . . with their classic Victoria Sponges.

There’s going to be a real buzz about the place and we’d encourage you to visit.

In the Demonstration Theatre, you’ll be able to see local chefs and producers showing just how simple and delicious good food can be. Demonstrations include Delicious Desserts, Simple Fish Cookery, Home Baking, and one for the guys, ‘Brewing your Own Beer’ – all complete with sampling.

Even better, the Festival is completely free to attend. That’s right, it doesn’t cost you anything to come along and see local chefs cooking all sorts of delicious local produce in the Demonstration Theatre, sample foods from local producers in the Covered Marketplace and taste home baking in the Tea Room. There’s also a bar throughout the day. Shirley added, “if you’ve never been to a food festival before – we’d recommend you go. They’re a great day out and a chance to see new techniques and sample new foods. Keep watching for all the latest updates.”

The event has had huge local support – as well as Saxen Ltd, lead sponsors include JH Donald, Dustacco, QTS, Lamlash House, Gillian Reid Opticians, GAP Communications, William Tracey Group and VG Energy.

Quality & Style In Ayrshire





o houses breathe? And, in breathing whisper secrets of what has gone before?

It might sound strange, but houses do have a character all their own, an existence, a history as well as a geographical location and a politicoeconomic past. Hartfield House, Racecourse View, Ayr, an architecturally stylish corner property with extensive leafy grounds, great views and free car parking facilities, is one such residence that has, no doubt, witnessed much. Once home to Ayr’s internationally famous, independent Wellington school, it was latterly owned and operated by the National Health Service. The global financial collapse of 2008, of course, was particularly damaging to the construction and property industries. Lucrative building projects were shelved, unemployment climbed, house buyers and lenders disappeared from the market as property prices crashed. In the spring of 2012 the NHS finally decided to put Hartfield House up for sale. On his daily commute to and from work, Ayrshire Businessman Robert Fergusson drove past the building and couldn’t help but admire its architectural prowess, its angles and geometry. In admiring the magnificent building, Fergusson also

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thought it a terrible shame and near tragedy to see such a wonderful structure now sitting empty and decaying. There must be, he had thought at the time, a business use for the facility. Something that could be done to bring the building back to life. Return it to its old splendour and vibrancy. Robert discussed some ideas with his brother John, and the two men decided to put an offer in to buy the building. With their offer accepted the brothers set about restoring and renovating the building to give it back some of its former style and brilliance. The work required didn’t take too long, and by the end of 2012 Hartfield House was once more alive and well and operating as serviced office space. As Robert points out, however, nothing in business ever travels in a completely straight line, there are always things that crop up that call for a quick rethink. “As is often the case in business,” Robert Fergusson told Ayrshire Magazine. “Things move on in twists and turns, and the serviced office space in Ayr became quite crowded, so when significant voids occurred, all at the same time, it was decided that a slightly different approach would be taken.” The two men were now considering other ways


they could make use of the building, both in agreement that a new direction was now urgently needed. Robert’s wife June and daughter Amy, who operate successful fashion outlet Juney Shoo, had opened a new shop in Ayr two years earlier. The success of this new venture had brought its own problems. It was soon recognised that the Juney Shoo brand in Ayr, with a sister retail outlet in Troon, would need to move to bigger premises. A decision was taken and it was quickly agreed that Hartfield House would have to move from an increasingly overcrowded serviced office space market, to soemthing a lot more niche. After careful consideration they, collectively, decided to take the business into the fashion and beauty world. Juney Shoo, in need of bigger premises, quickly relocated and was installed in a magnificent suite in Hartfield House, while Lisa Caldow’s LC Beauty business is now scheduled to move to another smart new suite within the building in September. These businesses join other tenants including Ed Holloway’s events business Eventsalive while Hartfield House, of course, is the new and impressive home of Ayrshire Magazine. For Robert, John and the other residents it remained important that the companies all work together and compliment each other. But, there is still space available for other businesses looking to be part of a smart shared concept, combining a fantastic building with ample, free parking facilities in a beautiful and increasingly trendy area of town, while mixing the enthusiasm of residents working to the benefit of all. “Combining the ingredients of such a fantastic building,” Robert said candidly. “It looks like Hartfield House will be a hive of activity in the coming months and years.” In addition, plans are now being discussed for Hartfield House to be used as a venue for exciting ‘events’.

Photo Credit | Yelling Vera Photography

“It’s such a beautiful house I love it,” Juney Shoo owner June Fergusson told us. “We will do some fashion shows leading up to Christmas. We’ve taken on some new brands which we are excited about... but there are other things I can’t say too much about.” At Hartfield House there is enough room for other upwardly mobile enterprises to come and set up in one of the most desirable spaces in, not only Ayr, but Ayrshire.

Quality & Style In Ayrshire





ntrepreneurs in Ayrshire have been given a boost with the opening of two new Business Gateway offices in the towns’ high streets. The new Irvine and Kilmarnock branches will allow new and existing business owners the opportunity to speak to a business adviser right on their doorstep. So whether you are keen to set up your own business, or already run a company but need inspiration to take it to the next level, gaining invaluable advice has never been easier for Ayrshire’s residents. Expert Business Advisers are based in the offices and can offer informed and impartial free advice on every aspect of starting, developing and running a business; from that all important business plan to promoting your company online. Claire Duncan, Events & Marketing Officer for Business Gateway Ayrshire commented: “At Business Gateway we’re committed to supporting local

businesses and the opening of these two offices to complement the one we already have in Ayr, allows us to offer even more to the Ayrshire business community. “Ayrshire business owners can benefit from a package of support including one-to-one expert help and fully funded workshops at all three of our offices and we are looking forward to helping even more new and existing businesses right on their doorstep.” The new offices are located at 89 King Street, Kilmarnock and 20 Bridgegate, Irvine. Business Gateway Ayrshire offers an ongoing programme of fully funded workshops and events where you can network with likeminded people and develop the day to day skills you need to run a business. The Business service is now being delivered by the Economic Development departments of North, South and East Ayrshire Council’s to provide a more integrated service for the local business community.

To find out how Business Gateway can help you visit or pop into our offices: Business Gateway Kilmarnock, 89 King Street (tel 01563 576 987); Business Gateway Irvine, 20 Bridegate (tel 01294 449 944); Business Gateway Ayr, 6 Forbes Drive, Heathfield Industrial Estate (tel 01292 616 349).

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Friendly, local driving school which can cater for all needs and abilities. With a ‘can do’ attitude Stuart and Natalie can get set you on the right road!

Tel: 01563 525183 Mob: 07778525853 Email:



hat links Sir Bradley Wiggins, Sir Chris Hoy, Laura Trott, Graeme Obree and Mark Cavendish? Award yourself half a point if you said ‘cycling’. However, all of them have taken part in professional cycle racing at the highest level in East Ayrshire. As many are discovering, the natural contours of the land, where gentle slopes glide down to lakeside trails, rural trails give way to spectacular off-road challenges and testing climbs lead to stunning views, all perfectly match every cycling discipline you can imagine.

Impressive. But East Ayrshire’s connection to cycling stretches back almost to the invention of the bicycle itself. In 1869, Kilmarnock cart maker Thomas McCall produced two ‘velocipedes’ – copies of an earlier cycle. He realised the potential of the bicycle and documented his creations – the first to do so – from which subsequent cycling pioneers drew inspiration. Pedal forward to the current day and cycling has grown massively to become a truly global leisure and sporting activity.

It’s becoming an increasingly attractive cycling destination, recently hosting Stage 1 of the Tour of Britain.

East Ayrshire has transformed too with cycling firmly established a well supported leisure and sporting activity.

Every year, East Ayrshire welcomes the legendary Graeme Obree and his Flying Scotsman Sportive – an event that has helped cement East Ayrshire’s reputation as a must-visit cycling destination.

With over 700km of paths suitable for cycling, the area offering challenges for the most advanced cyclist, right through to gentle trails for families and novice riders.

Next year (29 and 30 April 2017) the prestigious Marmotte Race arrives - leaving mainland Europe for the first time, covering almost every town in East Ayrshire.

Thanks to the recent successes of professional cyclists such as Laura Trott, Sir Chris Hoy, Mark Cavendish and Sir Bradley Wiggins, cycling has never had a higher profile, nor has there been a better time to cycle in East Ayrshire.

It has an extraordinary following on the Continent and features a 20km time trial and a Grand Fondo event – 137km of riding, with demanding hill climbs. Next month, on 29 October, the Braveheart Cycling charity event celebrates ten years in the area, helping support young and up-and-coming cyclists.

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So, if you’ve been inspired by the Tour of Britain, motivated by the Olympics, or simply fancy a change of scenery, check out one of these local runs.

PEDAL POWER SIR CHRIS HOY CYCLE WAY A 12.3 mile route following a disused railway line between Hurlford and Galston – an excellent day out exploring the Irvine Valley.

DEAN CASTLE COUNTRY PARK Traffic free and gentle - a great route for young people, families and beginners – 1.5 miles of cycling in the northern edge of Kilmarnock.

ROUTE 73 (NATIONAL CYCLE ROUTE) A ten mile run between Kilmarnock and nearby Irvine town. It’s nearly traffic free, so ideal for families and those wanting to improve their cycling.

WHITELEE WINDFARM With more than 130 km of cycling trails to explore, Whitelee Windfarm offers a number of routes suitable for gentle cycling.

GALLOWAY FOREST PARK A breathtaking network of rural lanes and stunning scenery, with Loch Doon a fantastic backdrop to your route, plus a host of additional activities to enjoy when not on your bike!


Off the beaten track you’ll find an exhilarating range of dedicated mountain bike tracks to challenge and inspire you in equal measure.


ecently, Kilmarnock became one of two Active Travel Hubs in Ayrshire (Ayr is the other) in a partnership between South and East Ayrshire Councils and the Ayrshire Roads Alliance.


It’s funded by Transport Scotland, via the Smarter Choices Smarter Places programme and run SUSTRANS Scotland.


Trained volunteers offer practical, hands-on advice on cycling and sustainable travel and also lead regular cycle rides.

Dalcairny waterfalls in Dalmellington, the ski slope near the Sir Chris Hoy Way, Ayrshire Segways at Auchinleck Estate, for starters!

You don’t even need a bike – a wide range of cycles, including powered Motus E-bikes are available for hire. The health benefits of cycling are also pretty impressive and it’s a great way to get fit and lose weight. In fact, figures show that if you regularly cycle just four miles, you can expect to have a heart that’s ten years younger than you!

For a more sedate day, visit Dumfries House in Cumnock, or the Dick Institute in Kilmarnock and give your mind and spirit a break too.

Cycling is routinely promoted across East Ayrshire schools, with five primaries gaining Cycle Friendly School status. And ‘all ability’ cycle sessions at the Ayrshire Athletics Arena offer children and adults with a physical, or learning disability, or who have impaired balance, the chance to take part in the sport.

ake a day out of your schedule and stop off at some East Ayrshire’s many scenic, sporting, cultural and leisure attractions.

Why not pop into town and do some shopping, have a bite to eat, or maybe even have a fab night out at the Palace Theatre? As Olympian Mark Cavendish says: “It doesn’t matter whether it’s raining, or the sun is shining, or whatever. “As long as I’m riding a bike I know I’m the luckiest guy in the world.” He knows what he’s talking about, having just explored East Ayrshire for himself!

It’s inexpensive and fun. Quality & Style In Ayrshire



Photo Credit |Scott Johnstone





ne thing we pride ourselves on here at Turnberry is our drive to grow the game of golf from a grass roots level. Junior tuition is an intrinsic part of what we do here on a daily basis, from teaching young children who have never played the game before to developing our advanced juniors who want to become golfing superstars. One of our most keen juniors striving for success is young Max Barclay, Max comes for weekly lessons and wants to be the next Severiano Ballesteros (his idol). He understands that putting in his own time and effort is a huge part of that but from our side we need to ensure Max is learning in a fun yet knowledgeable environment. Below is an outline of exactly what we would cover with Max in a Junior lesson to help him develop and progress towards becoming a Major champion:WARM-UP Maxâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s body is at a stage where it is developing rapidly so warming up properly before a session is vital. To do this we would do some quick zig-zag cone touch sprints and get Max to put the golf club across his shoulders, get into his golf posture and turn back and through quickly increasing the heart rate and giving him golf specific movements to warm-up with. SWING To help Max progress with his golf game we have

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been working on increasing his club head speed. First we get Max to work through the bag hitting to different targets then when we get to the driver we record his initial club head speed. We then go on to looking at some speed training drills that will help increase his speed. For example, swinging an alignment stick feeling he is engaging his core but also swinging his arms quicker (we do this with both left and right handed swings as it is key to develop both sides of the body) throwing a heavy football from his golf posture or swinging one of our heavy swing trainers, again both sides of the body. We then go back to hitting the driver and record his new personal best, trying to improve this session by session Max will start to see how much he is improving and his golf game will reap the benefits. SKILLS TEST To end a session we generally play a fun game in the putting studio, setting out a crazy putting course with out of bounds and hazards not only helps Max develop his putting technique but helps him to understand the rules and etiquette involved in playing the game of golf. The importance of teaching Junior golf is that it is done in a safe, fun and educational way, if you can tick all of those boxes then you will see effective long term development all the while create a real passion for the game.




sabelle Boineau held her nerve at Dundonald Links to win her maiden Ladies European Tour title at the Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open on an action packed day where the lead changed three times.

then birdied the second and third before moving two ahead with a massive eagle putt on the fifth hole. Boineau birdied the fifth and then the 12th but dropped a shot at the 13th before Wessberg made a clutch par putt on 16 to stay one ahead.

A closing four under par 68, to add to a 70 and 67, got the Frenchwoman to 11 under and handed her a one-shot victory over Linda Wessberg, with Beth Allen and overnight leader Becky Morgan a shot further back.

Boineau then holed from 10 feet on 17 to take the lead for the first time before Wessberg three putted.

Boineau, who won the Duke of York Young Champions event at Dundonald Link as a teenage amateur back in 2007 was elated with the win, which will give her a boost of confidence heading into playing the Women’s British Open next week. “What a tournament to win: the Aberdeen Asset Management Ladies Scottish Open” said the 27-yearold. “Today is one of the best days of my life.” “I was very nervous on the last. I was shaking but I didn’t want people to see,” said Boineau, a third year Ladies European Tour professional. “Hitting my rescue, I was so nervous, because I had memories from when I played in 2007 when I think I was in the lead as well. I pushed it because I got scared of the water and finished second, so I thought, ‘Don’t do the same.’ I had my friend, Alexis, on the bag, which helped, because when you’re nervous time can go so fast. The putt was still difficult but when Linda missed hers I felt some relief. I thought, at worst I’ll be in a playoff.” It was all change early on day three. Wales’ Becky Morgan started with a three stroke lead but there was a two shot swing on the first after Boineau almost holed her approach shot for eagle. Wessberg

“I played well all day, started off really well, but then didn’t really make any birdies and had a hard time hitting the fairway. The first cut is quite difficult when you’re trying to attack the pins. I misjudged my putt on 17 going up the hill and thought it was going to be slower with the rain,” said Wessberg, who finished second. Allen needed a birdie on the last to tie for the lead but dropped a shot for a final round of 67. “The third shot was the shot I was trying to play. It was a really hard pin when you’re coming in with a long iron, like I had to. I hit 6-iron as well as I could and it didn’t go forward. I hit a chip shot which I thought was a safe one and I didn’t even hit that bad of a putt. I just got unlucky.” Earlier, Caroline Hedwall completed a course record final round of 64 and she ended in fifth place to claim a Ricoh Women’s British Open spot. Hedwall along with Gwladys Nocera and Isabella Ramsay all earned themselves a place in next week’s Ricoh Women’s British Open at Woburn by virtue of their finishes being the top 3 players not otherwise exempt. The best placed Scot, was Vikki Laing who fired a closing round of 67 to finish on four under for the tournament and in 11th place overall. Quality & Style In Ayrshire


Photo Credit | Andy Sokell





y editor wanted me to start this article off by saying I ‘caught up’ with Scott Brown, Ayrshire’s own Tough Mudder champion. But let’s be serious: that was never going to happen. I like to believe I’m somewhat fit and active. Not as much as I used to be, but somewhere in between the has-been and could-have-been category. Brown’s fitness is on another level, as frequent readers of this magazine will know (w in the World’s Toughest Mudder challenge). The chances of me keeping up with the Dundonald’s toughest distance runner are as slim as Wile E Coyote catching Roadrunner. So I had to resort to the journalist’s saving grace, the mobile phone. Yet, despite taking the apparent lazy option to hear the latest from Ayrshire’s most hardcore runner, I still hung up having had my breath taken away by his latest inspiring story. Jamie and his partner Amanda Collins from Irvine want to go on holiday to Disneyland with their twoyear-old daughter, Luna. Normally such trivia would not require – or warrant – a fundraising page. But Jamie is suffering from cancer and is terminally ill. Rather than just donate, Brown, in his words, wants “to do more”. But he’s been injured for the past four months. Four long and at times painfully boring months. What it has allowed for is more time with his thoughts, to come up with ideas. That extra time to think, coupled with a paternal instinct led to his decision to take his fundraising one step further – or Three Peaks further – and attempt to complete the popular Three Peaks Challenge in less than 20 hours. “You just start thinking that this dad might not get to see his own child grow up and all that stuff. It’s not really fair. You just think: f*****g hell.”

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It was that quote that really made the brutality of the situation hit home for me. But the family is overwhelmed by the gesture and response, with roughly £200 raised already. Generally a challenge reserved for hill walkers to attempt in under 24 hours, Brown will up the pace and run to finish in under his target time. On September 17 he plans to scale Britain’s highest mountain, Ben Nevis, at noon. By car he’ll hit the A82 to Glasgow before joining the M74 and crossing the border to size up the Lake District’s Scafell Pike. If Brown chose to follow the schedule of most hill walkers, the use of the M74 would be significant: driving at night would have the benefit of a lit motorway, and it would mean tackling the tougher two peaks at lighter times of the day – the most troublesome being Mount Snowdon, in Wales. So Brown is adequately prepared for the night runs. “It’s about keeping your wits about you. I’ll take a backup GPS and an extra bag along with my essentials and race gear. Of course I’ll have torches and lights too.” I asked Brown what would happen if he finds himself stranded, injured or without light at any point during his challenge, ascent or descent. “Well these days I’d have my phone, so that’s an advantage – I’d just call one of the guys and then stay put.” Not just a journalist’s saving grace after all then, the mobile phone. On a final, serious note: we wish Scott all the best on his journey and also extend our deepest thoughts to Jamie, Amanda and Luna and pray for them on their own, completely different journey. We sincerely hope your holiday turns out to be a truly amazing trip filled with wonderful memories.




round 2 years ago i got thinking, what else could keep people motivated and help improve results in our coaching programs and get our folks excited about training. Fitranx kind of fell in my lap from an email I got from a previous mentor of mine. At first I have to say I was sceptical due to it being mostly based in America and feared it may be another fad like 6 minute abs or other shopping channel quick fixes, but I’m glad I was wrong. Two years in and we have folks from level one all the way up to level six and their names are proudly displayed on a wall in our facility. So i here you ask what is FitranX? FitRanX is a comprehensive and standardised ranking system used for gauging individuals’ fitness levels. The beauty of the system is that its not based on how long you have been at a facility or how much your trainer thinks you have improved. This is a REAL ranking system that took years to develop and perfect from a former Marine Nick Rhains. The FitRanX system works through standardised fitness testing. There are 8 FitRanX levels with corresponding colors white up to black that represent each level. That means a level 5 in Kilmarnock, Ayrshire has to accomplish the same thing as a level 5 in Florida, USA. The fitness testing requires individuals to sit a test within their age bracket 16-35, 36-55 and 56 onwards. In order for you to progress from one level to the next, you must participate in the fitness test that uses specific exercises to determine strength within the exercises’ respective muscle groups. There is also a conditioning portion required for each level’s advancement. Through scientific testing and years of development in the FitRanX System, these exercises have been proven to allow you to demonstrate personal fitness

growth in each major muscle group, as well as cardiovascular conditioning. As you pass through the FitRanX System, you wear the colour of your corresponding fitness level in RanX Band much like martial arts or other structured sports. We find that motivation can drop as time goes on But FitRanX keeps you motivated when the quest for Fatloss gets boring or less important. It gives you clear and specific goals to strive for while ensuring that you are achieving balanced, full-body fitness. It also provides a sense of healthy competition and peer accountability. This is why FitRanX can be a great solution to many peoples problems when trying to get in shape. It keeps you Motivated!, we believe at Personal Training Ayrshire that staying motivated and having the right mindset is key to success. It gives you an abundance of short term goals to reach which will help folks keep focused and see their fitness improve week after week. The testing days are held 4-5 weeks apart and always develop so much positive energy, everyone at PTA wants to be a part of it. Variety is the spice of life with our every changing workouts, you will never be bored again. We believe that having an environment of real like minded people is important, cheesy as it sounds you become part of the team at PTA. Everyone is so friendly and are always keen to help each other reach their true potential. At PTA we get a massive kick out of helping folk achieve goals they never though was possible including FitRanX has demo enhanced peoples RESULTS! To find out more info about Fitranx you can stop by our website Quality & Style In Ayrshire



EVERY LANDLORDS WISH…. RENT ON TIME, EVERYT TIME 100% GUARANTEED!! With huge demand in the Letting sector, a market place forecast to double in size by 2030, its not no wonder Landlords from all over Ayrshire are snapping up Rent On Time, which is totally exclusive to Donald Ross Residential in Kilmarnock and Ayr. NO other Scottish Firm offers this unique rent collection service as part of their standard service package. Throughout the industry over 70% of Landlords do not receive their rent on the time, NEVER at Donald Ross Residential, our

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Landlords have guaranteed income whether the tenant pays or not. There is NO risk of rent arrears, plus there is £50K of legal cover included for safe measure. For Landlords looking for a stress free-way to Guarantee your income, in our professional opinion…. its priceless, if you would like to switch from your current letting agent at no cost or hassle or would like to arrange a market appraisal contact our letting team on 01292 288358 or 01563 550088


From Concept To Completion

Specialising in creating bespoke interiors and Lifestyle Rooms. We believe that by changing your surroundings we can change and enhance how you live and use your home.

The Design Studio, Cathcart House, 20 Cathcart Street Ayr, KA7 1BJ 104 Quality & Style In Ayrshire

01292 618277


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Brilliant Blinds Blinds have gone through a quantum evolution from the stereo typical “Blinds of 20 years ago”. Blinds provide a flexible smart and affordable window dressing with styles and shapes to flatter any home. They are available with a variety of performance features including blackout, anti mildew and moisture resistant. Roller, Pleated, Cellular, Venetian and Roman the choices are endless. The latest Roller Blind mirage fabrics “Now you see it, now you don’t” can be used in combination with the ‘Senses’ system which is unique and brings enhanced light control with the ability to have your blind fully open, fully closed or anywhere in between. They are also available in a new power shade option which utilises a simple remote control to operate the blind eliminating any operating cords or chains. Contemporary, chic and combining the most desirable aesthetic features with innovative design and is available in 6 new metallic finishes. At Interior Ideas we specialise in finding blinds for any window that will enhance the overall appearance of your property. BY ANN MCKINNON. 1 A clinical bathroom in shades of grey comes alive when a bold vibrant lime green Roller Blind that is both wipe down and moisture resistant is used to add a splash of colour to this overtly neutral scheme. Our roller blinds are extremely versatile and are suitable to fit any living space. 2. This well dressed, comfortable bedroom has a lavish window dressing using both closing curtains and workable Roman Blinds. Roman Blinds are simple and tailored and can be made in a plethora of sumptuous materials that are guaranteed to make a statement at any window. 3. Blinds are available in many vibrant tones 65 self coloured fabrics in total. The pleated blinds shown in nautical blue adds a striking feature to blanched walls. Eye catching, and available with new fabric technologies pleated blinds come in both blackout and standard shading. 4. Simple and stylish Venetian Blinds can be used to great effect from a selection of materials and finishes to allow you easy control over light and privacy. From bold colours to shimmer and perforated their easy clean finish are ideal for kitchen and dining areas. 5. The ‘Mirage’ blind is the most distinctive blind in the marketplace. This blind will change the appearance of your home by the touch of a button. This fantastic control and adaptability eclipses all others and enables clients to use their roller blinds in a way they never could before.

1 2 3 4 5

All blinds shown are available to view at Interior Ideas 195 Main Street Prestwick KA9 1LH. Call 01292 670624/07900194591.

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Visit us just past Ayr Hospital Or find us online at Quality & Style In Ayrshire




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wwwwwwwwwwwwww…are you getting married? Only been together a couple of years? Are you all loved up and knee deep in wedding magazines planning the big day? You should probably stop reading here. Seriously. Been married around ten years? Tired? Want a wee sit down, a laugh and to occasionally whisper ‘Amen sister’ to yourself? Get comfortable. Bring Prosecco. WEDDING DATE - THEN Congratulations! You’re getting married! You have set a date and are on a countdown to the big day. You’re giddy, you’re excited and your mind is full of colour schemes and wedding dresses and confetti… You will NEVER forget this date. EVER. WEDDING DATE – TEN YEARS ON Congratulations! You’ve remembered at 2pm the day before your anniversary to moonpig a card for your other half! You are an excellent wife to remember this in amongst all the housework, childcare and job responsibilities. You are winning at life. Extra points are awarded to you if you manage to make the anniversary card wholly inappropriate. My other half and I generally can’t display the cards we get each other in the living room anymore, especially now our eldest child can sound out words…picture me bundling cards out of sight as he starts to sound out, ‘I…STILL…LOVE…YOUR…PE-…’ I am a terrible Mother. BUDGET – THEN You’re rich! You have a bundle of cash set aside to plan and execute the most important day of your life. You will think nothing of spending hundreds of pounds on a dress you will wear once and flowers that will smell beautiful, but ultimately be discarded a day after the big event. BUDGET – TEN YEARS ON You’re rich! It is the week after payday and you will feel like a Queen with all your money. This will

change as you realise there’s still three weeks until the next cash injection. Browsing through dresses online at night, you will deliberate over which £29.99 dress you can really afford, then decide not to bother at all when you realise there is a £3.99 delivery charge (how very DARE they?) Flowers are something that are bought for you now by your other half if you’re poorly or he’s trying to say sorry for something. Top tip, if there are no flowers, you can always rely on Febreeze to de-stink the house (I live with two boys and a man – they are honking.) DRESS AND BRIDAL UNDERWEAR – THEN Foxy lady! Look at you, in your corseted wonder of a dress with beautiful, delicate lace underwear to delight your groom with. You’re beauty. You’re grace. You look like a supermodel. He will be drooling over you at the altar. DRESS AND BRIDAL UNDERWEAR – TEN YEARS ON Foxy lady! You’re sexting your husband a decade later to tell him you have no underwear on. Sadly it’s a passive-aggressive text because he forgot to put the wash on you told him about. YOU HAD ONE JOB HUSBAND. MAKE-UP AND HAIR - THEN Supermodel! You have various people surrounding you attending to your every cosmetic need. Hair is coiffed, nails are painted, skin is cleansed and make up applied. You feel like a celeb sharing a back-stage Instagram selfie. #beautygoals MAKE-UP AND HAIR – TEN YEARS ON Supermodel! Well, in the 1990s heroin-chic style. Bags under your eyes, not much make up and crazy hair. If you can carve out 5 minutes to yourself to get made up, congratulations! I get ready for work every morning, with a 2 year old literally trying to climb over me like I am his Everest, or a 6 year old pushing me out the way so I can spike up his hair for him. I’m so time poor for beauty now that my skin Quality & Style In Ayrshire



care routine now involves using baby wipes in the morning to take off the make-up from the day before (the make-up that I sometimes finish in the toilets at work…) HONEYMOON - THEN Sun! Sand! Selfies! Document your love on your honeymoon with literally hundreds of photographs. Have couples massages on the beach and hold hands during it. Already you can envision picture perfect holidays with your other half and bouncing babies. It will be like a movie. You cannot wait for your children squealing ‘Mama!’ whilst the sun warms your skin. HONEYMOON – TEN YEARS ON Sun! Not from a 5 star holiday though. The sun in your life now arrives at 5am, because that’s when your children wake you up. My youngest son likes to combine the early waking with pulling my duvet off me – chilly! The day now routinely starts as the sun naturally rises – summertime is a BLAST. By the time I get to work at 9am, I’ve usually managed to do two washes, prep lunch, sometimes make soup and panic complete the homework that my eldest has had in his homework bag for a full five days. There

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are undoubtedly pluses to being woken so early. However, we all know that our days end at 9pm to cope with this. Rock and roll! So. Hey. A decade into marriage? It’s undoubtedly much less glamorous than a wedding day and honeymoon, plus marriage will have its ups and downs (anyone who says ten years of marriage has been a non-stop love fest is LYING, also I bet they are the type to have public conversations on Facebook with their spouse about how much they love each other *puke*) However, in ten years you go from being two people, to one unit. Often with bonus people that you made and grew yourself! There will be no other people you’d rather be with. When I’m poorly, my other half has brought me a bucket, cleaned up my sick and been an all-round star. I can’t imagine there are many other people itching to look after me when I’m puking and greetin’. And that is the output of a wedding day; growing older with someone, maturing and finding someone who will always look out for you. Plus, they bring you fried goods when you’re hungover, laugh at your lame jokes and make your feel like the centre of their (noisy, child filled, tired, slightly whiffy) world. Who needs a wedding day when you can have married life? I’m off to find the Febreeze again.

We do! Branding - Websites - Interiors

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he Annual Ayrshire Art Exhibition and Sale will return to the MacLaurin Art Gallery in Ayr from Sunday 9th October to Sunday 6th November 2016. Kindly sponsored by Frazer Coogans Solicitors and Sinclair Scott Chartered Accountants. Now in its 23rd year, this highlight in the artistic calendar of Ayrshire’s art lovers will see over 400 works from talented artists from across Scotland and the wider UK, exhibited and for sale with proceeds going towards the invaluable work of Save the Children. The exhibition, which was the brainchild of members of the Ayrshire branch of Save the Children over two decades ago, has raised over £500,000 for the charity over the years. Highlights of this year’s exhibition will include work by Irish-born artist Aine Divine. Aine, a finalist in the prestigious Sky Arts Portrait Artists of the Year Award 2014, now lives in Midlothian; her work was recognised by the Royal Scottish Society of Painters in 2015 when she won a watermark award for her entry in their summer show. Dorothy Boyer now returned to Scotland from living many years in Jeddah will exhibit her

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stunning work at this exhibition. Long term exhibitors and supporters of the sale including Marie Aitken, James and Clare Harrigan, Erni Upton FRSA Ed Hunter will again be exhibiting a selection of their work. This year’s raffle prize Reflections, Ayr is by renowned local Ayrshire artist William McLean Kerr. William has enjoyed a long and varied creative career, firstly as a graphic designer then a period in the world of television where he was responsible for the artwork on Spitting Image. Since setting up his studio in Ayr in 1966 his work has been exhibited across Scotland and in London and he was recently commissioned to paint Dumfries House as a 60th birthday gift to HRH Prince Charles. Smaller creative types, will be able to explore their talents with the help of the Little Art School in the kids creative zone in the Patron’s Gallery. The annual Save the Children Art Exhibition and Sale is an opportunity for Ayrshire locals and visitors alike to enjoy a varied and eclectic exhibition of the work of respected and renowned artists as well as emerging new talent at the same time as contributing to the work of this global charity.

e c i p S route

Highway to a healthy and heavenly dining experience

38 Kilmarnock Road (off the A77) Symington, South Ayrshire KA1 5PW

01563 830 240

How to find us! Dundonald





Spice Route








Gillian Clancey, wearing BooHoo - QTS Emma Wyer - Lillian’s boutique - QTS Eleanor Lenson - AX paris - QTS

GIllian Craig - River Island - QTS Amie Walsh - Zara – QTS

Mandy Cairnie - Karen Millen - Pretty Woman Salcoats Melissa Ramage - ASOS - Ken Binnie Financial




Caroline Richardson - River Island - East Ayrshire Council Amy Gardener - Zara - Peel Ports

Carla Pellegrini - River Island - Capelli Hair & Beauty Melissa Ramage - ASOS - Ken Binne Finance Tracey Bradford - TopShop

Caroline Richardson - River Island - EAC Tanya Campbell - ASOS - NHS A&A

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01294 277- 888

01294 277- 466

01294 21-20-20

01294 277- 499



01294 277-888

01294 277-466

All contracts welcome

3 Portland Avenue, Irvine KA12 8NL

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T U R N U P TH E G L A M O U R Friday 9th September. Enjoy an afternoon of glitz & glamour at our Ladies Lunch! £65.00 per person.

T U R N U P TH E M U S I C Friday 30th September. At The ‘Sounds of Classical Music’, enjoy acclaimed musical talent and dinner. £60.00 per person.

T U R N U P TH E J A Z Z Friday 14th October. With a show stopping live jazz and swing line up, experience a jazz brunch supper. £75.00 per person.

T U R N U P TH E TA S TE Friday 21st October. Discover exquisite wines from New Zealand, paired with a four course menu. £75.00 per person.

T U R N U P TH E S T Y L E Friday 4th November. With fizz, fashion & food in partnership with award winning style boutique Jane Davidson, Mapping & Webb and Aston Martin. £75.00 per person.

T U R N U P TH E TA S TE Friday 11th November. With specially paired William Grant & Sons whiskies and an inspired four course menu. £75.00 per person.

T U R N U P TH E M U S I C Saturday 3rd December. Celebrate and enjoy the sounds of Frank Sinatra, plus a three course meal. £65.00 per person.

T U R N U P TH E F E S TI V ITI E S Friday 16th December. Celebrate the festive season with a sparkling Christmas party night. £70.00 per person.

T U R N U P TH E S PA R K L E Saturday 19th November. Enjoy a wonderful ball in aid of The Eric Trump Foundation and Glasgow Children’s Hospital. £95.00 per person.


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Ayrshire Magazine - Number 12 - WEDDING issue  
Ayrshire Magazine - Number 12 - WEDDING issue