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Are you an independent person who employs a personal carer/personal assistant at home to meet your individual needs? Do they have little in the way of formal training? If so, you can now access FREE professional training for your carer/personal assistant in a number of subjects, enabling your care to be carried out more effectively.

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CONTRIBUTORS Emma Dance Editor T: 01225 322224

Ann Oddy Advertising Director T: 01749 832303


Joanne Reynolds Advertising manager South Somerset T: 01935 709707

Flora Thompson Senior writer T: 01935 709742


t would be nice to say that spring is on its way but with the horrendous weather we have been suffering it really doesn’t feel like it. Just at the moment it’s hard to imagine the green shoots of spring emerging from the grey flood waters that are submerging much of our beautiful area. While the dark skies and incessant rain might be making me feel miserable, I’m aware that I’m one of the lucky ones.

Christina Sim Fashion editor

My home remains warm and dry, and the worst I have suffered is a few rather wet walks to and from work and a slower than usual train journey to London. For others though the effects have been devastating. I can’t imagine how it must feel to lose not just your home or your livelihood, but also treasured keepsakes and memories that no amount of insurance money can ever replace.

Lesley Taylor Interiors editor

We regularly see scenes of destruction on the news from far away places, and while we might feel sorry for those involved it always seems very distant and removed from our lives. You never imagine that it will happen to our communities. Yet here we are. The one thing we must be grateful for, however, is that we do live in a country where help is available. The military has been sent in, the Prime Minister has pledged millions of pounds in financial support and communities are rallying to support each other. If you’d like to help then the Somerset Community Foundation has set up a Flood Relief Fund to help those worst affected.

Kim Beer Business support manager T:01749 832317

You can donate by visiting, calling 01749 344949 or you can make a £5 donation by texting NOAH95 £5 to 70070. Everyone feels down sometimes but events like this can help put everything in proportion and if there’s one positive thing we can take from what’s happened, it is to really appreciate what we have. So next time work is starting to get to you, or the other half and kids are driving you crazy, stop for a minute and think about all the good things in your life, and everything that others have lost in the floods. Then maybe the small things won’t feel quite so bad.

Mtth Lhujl EDITOR



Graham Holburn Lead designer



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Flatter your figure with these cheats for giving yourself a slimmer silhouette.










Our fashion columnist Christina Sim gives her tips for spring style

Give your face a work out PLUS put some bling in your beauty regime

Win a fabulous mother & daughter spa day courtesy of Aqua Sana at Longleat Forest

Cook up the perfect roast for Mother’s Day with these tips from celebrity chef and restaurateur Marco Pierre White





Give your Mum a treat this Mother’s Day with these great gift ideas

Make your home hotel chic PLUS Phil Spencer talks making your home energy efficient











24 48



Feel proud to be British at luxury London hotel The Draycott


The Market House at Castle Castle reopens after a major refurbishment PLUS explore the area on foot with our new monthly walks feature







We go out and about to capture the action at some of the area’s most glamorous events

We test drive the The Jaguar XF 2.2D 163t

Have a go at our crossword. Quick clues if you’re short of time, or cryptic ones if you want to test yourself

“ ??

– Alan Titchmarsh, p45





Alan Titchmarsh talks to Laura Tremelling about his new book



Italian garden designer Luciano Giubbilei gives his tips for creating a garden with texture



■ Episode printed blouse, £55; Therapy colour block pencil skirt, £30; Lulu Guinness clutch, £225; all House of Fraser (



Time to banish body bugbears with clothes that instantly flatter your figure. Lisa Haynes unveils the fashion secrets for figure flattery.


ou may have started the year with the best of intentions, but if reality is biting you on the bottom and your three-times-a-week gym resolution is fading fast, cheat!

If you’re not much of a long distance runner, fashion has all manner of figure-fixing shortcuts. From illusion dresses to leg-lengthening trousers, you can pretty much dress to create the figure of your dreams. “Panel dresses are great for ladies whose hot spot is their hips, while jeans and skirts with tummy control hold in stomachs for a streamlined silhouette,” says Della Nelson, head of womenswear design at Isme, who recently launched a Confident Curves Collection.

Toned tum For many, the midriff is the place where post-festive excess decides to settle. But the muffin top can be camouflaged with some clever construction. Look for dresses, skirts and even jeans with in-built control panels that suck you in for a bulge-free effect. “Brands have discovered the joys of Lycra,” says Veronique Henderson, author of Colour Me Slimmer. “Not only does it give ease in a fabric, but in its heavier form, it can also help to keep extra kilos under control.” Wearing patterns across the midriff area can also help disguise any unwanted fullness.

Balanced bottom Beyonce is living proof that a curvy bottom is beyond sexy, but if you’d describe yours as ‘squidgy and oversized‘, dressing can be trickier. If you’re lacking in bum mojo, avoid tight fits and VPLs. “Rounded, curvy bottoms need skirts and trousers that are either shaped with darts or some easing of the waist to accommodate your curves,” Henderson says. ■ Hollywell colour block dress, £99; Ossie Clark London (




“It’s more flattering if the fabric hangs from the fullest part of your bottom, rather than curving


■ Paloma geometric dress, £180; Fenn Wright Manson (

round and under.” Avoid details on the bottom area, like pockets, if you don’t wish to draw attention to your behind.

Wonder waist The Holy Grail of the hourglass figure is a curvy, defined waist. You can magic one up if you’re short-waisted or straight-up-and-down, with clever block colour panels that resemble the Ambiguous Vase illusion. A monochrome palette works particularly well because it’s the starkest contrast.

■ Amara coat, £269; Amaya blouse, £119; Amaya stripe trousers, £239; all Hobbs (0845 313 3130/ ■ Jacquard panelled dress, £199; Jaeger (

“If you’re lacking a defined waist, straight or boxy clothes in crisp fabrics can add kilos,” Henderson you’re top heavy and not happy about it, rebalancing your proportions is simple. warns. Try colour blocking tactics, using plain black to “Tops or dresses cut with some shaping at the minimise your bust and a lighter shade directly waist will create the illusion of some definition, underneath. Draping necklines are also flattering thereby making you look slimmer.” on a fuller bust. Whether you’re a dedicated trouser or skirt wearer, the key to longer, slimmer looking pins is the cut-off point. Always ensure your hemline finishes at the narrowest point of your leg. If you have pronounced calf muscles, for instance, avoid midi skirts that fall directly at their fullest. Stripes can offer some supermodel trickery if worn in the right way. For ultimate leg lengthening powers, stick to skinny, vertical stripes. “If you feel your legs are a little short, narrow leg trousers and pencil skirts will make you appear taller and therefore slimmer,” Henderson suggests.

■ Bethy top, £45; Bethy trousers, Banish the bust £75; both Coast (www.coast-stores. Nobody wants to diminish their bust completely, but if com).

“The ideal dresses for curved bodies are those made from soft fabrics,” advises Henderson. “If you find that you’re different sizes top and bottom, opt for separates, which offer great scope for co-ordinating colours.”

Body-boosting tips Serve up your new season wardrobe with a slimmer you. Follow image consultants Colour Me Beautiful’s advice for instant figure transformation – no diet necessary: ■ Straighter bodies need straighter constructions while curvier bodies need softer, shaped pieces. ■ The heavier the fabric, the more bulk it adds to your silhouette. ■ Good posture will naturally create straighter shoulders and a flatter tummy. ■ An interesting detail on sleeves can help detract the eye from an unflattering area. ■ Too-tight or baggy clothes can both add weight, so getting the right fit will help to create the appearance of a slimmer you. ■ Colour Me Slimmer by Colour Me Beautiful image consultants is published by Hamlyn, priced £12.99. Available now

■ George at Asda geo print blouse, £12 (


Longer legs




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Everyone knows that if you want to lose weight then diet and exercise is really the only way to go. The trouble is that it takes time, and sometimes you just need a quick fix. Step forward Marks & Spencer who have created clothing, underwear and swimwear to flatten the flab and make you appear slimmer than the scales might suggest. Emma Dance tests the range. Drop a Dress Size dress The Drop a Dress Size dress was an innovation added to the M&S range last year. Each of the dresses is fitted with an inner panel which squeezes and smoothes - the idea being that it will make you look a size smaller than you really are. The verdict: It actually works! As I squeezed into the dress, tugging at the zip I wasn’t sure that even if I did get it done up I would be able to breath, but actually once in it was surprisingly comfortable and I definitely looked slimmer. I even had several people asking me if I’d lost weight. Result!


■ Magicwear no vpl waist and thigh cincher, £35

comfortable thing I’ve ever worn, and peeling it off at the end of the evening was a rather inelegant affair, but if you’re willing to put up with some mild discomfort for the sake of looking at least one size smaller this is the way forward.

Swimwear It’s rare to find a woman who doesn’t dread baring all on the beach but M&S tried to lessen the trauma by building tummy control into some of their swimwear.

Who can forget Bridget Jones and her “scary stomach-holding-in pants”? Now M&S have come up with not only pants that squeeze in your wobbly bits but bodies, slips and tights.

The verdict: As I held up the tummy control body I couldn’t help think that I’d struggle to fit in just one of my legs, let alone my whole body. Miraculously though, somehow I wedged myself in there and I have no idea where the flab was displaced to, but the important thing was that it was no longer visible, my stomach looked flatter and my waist looked smaller. It ■ M&S Collection Tummy Control Ruched wasn’t the most Swimsuit, £29.50




■ Tummy control wear your own bra body, £29.50

The verdict: Until I’ve lost six stone (and maybe even then) I’m never going to look great in a swimsuit but the two swimsuits I tried were certainly some of the most flattering I’d worn. The tummy flattening panels aren’t as extreme as in the Shapewear so the results aren’t as noticeable but it did make a difference. They are cleverly designed too with lots of ruching over the stomach to disguise the bulges.

Drop a Dress Size Broken Striped Shift Dress with Secret Support™, £59■


Denim Marl Stripe Polo £35 Tailored Shorts Plain £40

Cowl Neck White Top £29 Red Belted A line Skirt £35

Nica Aleks Buckle Ziptop Tote £55

Fiorelli Harper It Bag £78

Lancôme Miracle Air De Teint Av Available in 11 Shades £29.50

Clarins Multiblush Colour 02 Candy £18

Homeware from £4

Not all brands available in all stores. Prices correct at time of going to press.

@ YEOVIL 01935 444444 | High Street, BA20 1RU



Jeans have gone from closet staple to catwalk trend. Lisa Haynes delights in this season’s unstoppable denim takeover


here are trends that fade in and out, and then there is steadfast denim. Jeans have always been a go-to staple, but not content with legs alone, there’s a head-to-toe denim takeover this season. From jean jackets to smart dresses, you can indulge in denim to your heart’s content. The good news is that your denim investments are unlikely to look dated after one season, so with durability on its side you can recycle them again and again. Stand by to do denim everything this spring.

Jeans jacket Put your black leather biker in storage and get the blues with a denim jacket. Let your style dictate the type of cover-up you opt for – classic numbers if you favour busy prints and brights, or detailed jackets if you’re more likely to wear plain or dark colours.

■ Twiggy denim skirt, £35, M&S

■ Denim shirt dress, £30, Next

Dressy denim Denim has gone to the (after)dark side with eveningwear options. Even tailoring has been constructed in structured, indigo form for a smart take on denim. Swap your LBD for an LDD – that’s Little Denim Dress. Avoid floaty silhouettes better suited to summery days and look for form-fitting shifts or crisp shirt dresses.

Blue takeover Double denim is not the easiest look to pull off but obsessives may want to dabble. The first rule is to contrast your denim shades – wearing a lighter shirt tucked into darker jeans will balance out your shape if you’re bottomheavy, for instance. An unbuttoned denim shirt is a less committed look. Try skinny jeans, a white tee and loose-fitting denim shirt worn open. Shirt pocket details in the right places will also boost your bust. If you’re top-heavy, try different styles to see what’s most flattering and comfortable.

Classic jeans It’s never been easier to find the perfect pair of jeans that you just don’t want to take off.

■ Ashlyn denim dress, £99, Phase Eight

■ Isme Savoir denim smart jacket, £45

to help nip and tuck in all the right places.

Blue extras

There’s a silhouette to suit everyone’s shape, and If denim just isn’t you, wear it in the most subtle of ways – on your feet or shoulder. some have even employed slimming technology




■ Painters Parka, £225, MiH Jeans

Once confined to the jeans racks, denim has spread to accessories with stonewash-style shoes and bags. Dial down the tomboy factor with pointed flat pumps or heels in blue denim.








Food & Farming Day A whole host of delicious and innovative trade stands.

With Free Children’s entertainment Ticket hotline 08445 793014



t wouldn’t be a cliche to say that Nicholas Wylde has had a glittering career. Last year the Bath-based jeweller celebrated 25 years in business and to mark the special anniversary he created his own diamond.

Every Wylde Flower Diamond has 89 precisely cut facets, including eight perfectly cut on the base, which reveals a stunning flower as you look through the diamond, and the design means that it sparkles even more than Nicholas said: “I always wanted my own diamond but I didn’t think it was achievable.

“I knew I wanted to celebrate the 25th anniversary with something very special and I was talking to one of my dealers in Antwerp and he said that he had just cut a stone which was a bit different and perhaps we could work together. “We tweaked it and registered the brand and since then we have not looked back. “We have a had a huge response to it and I love working with it. “Not many people have their own diamond so I have something very special.” It is coloured gems that are Nicholas’ real passion however. “I love colour,” he said. “Diamonds don’t really do very much for me to be honest which is why I designed my own, but with a coloured stone I get really passionate.” His latest collection, the Phoenix collection, inspired by the fire that devastated his shop last year, indulges his love of bright stones and incorporates rubies, diamonds and fire opals. “I actually started doodling this collection a few months before the fire,” admits Nicholas. “I am always looking around me for inspiration and I









were very modern. I had a PDQ machine to take card sales and a computer when at the time only about five per cent of jewellers had computers. “To this day I have tried to stay at the forefront of the industry and I have won awards because I was an entrepreneur bringing things to the table that other shops had not done before.

“When the fire happened I knew I had to create the collection and it is something positive to come out of something awful.” During his career Nicholas has scooped a whole host of awards and accolades, including a coveted spot in Professional Jeweller magazine’s annual listing of the Hot 100 UK jewellery professionals in 2013. He believes the key to his success is his entrepreneurial spirit and desire to push boundaries, a philosophy which he has had since he first opened in Northumberland Place. “The jewellery trade was very old fashioned 25 years ago and when I opened I was like a breath of fresh air,” said Nicholas. “I looked fresh and new and my window displays

Nicholas’ latest innovation is Wylde Art, a project which combines precious stones and fine art. “I had been thinking about bringing jewellery to the next level,” said Nicholas. “You can be wearing a beautiful piece of jewellery but you never see it unless you look in the mirror. “Wylde Art is for the woman, or man, who has enough jewellery but who has art and has money to invest. “We try to make the fashion, not follow it.”

■ Bath-based jeweller Nicholas Wylde


saw this combination of stones on a client.

“I believe that you should not stand still. If you stand still you start moving backwards and there is always room for improvement.”





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■ Betty Boucle Scallop Jacket, £68, Topshop ■ Paydon White embellished Trainers, £110, Pied a Terre

South West fashion blogger Christina Sim, from Just So Fashion, shows us how to dress for spring


y look this month was inspired by the gorgeous Chanel Couture Spring 2014 collection. I just love the collection’s mix of tweed suits and dresses worn with none other than running trainers, moving away from the traditional Chanel pumps. It’s a look you would relate to walking to the office in rather than high fashion, but I think it looks modern and vibrant. I love the fresh pastel colours Chanel chose for the season, mouth watering pinks, blues and violets. This Chanel-esque pink skirt suit from Topshop caught my eye and I have chosen two coloured trainers to team it with, a choice between embellished white and silver. This athletic look is great to work with, have fun matching or mixing the colour of the suit with the trainers and the same goes for the handbag. A pastel blue suit would look great too; worn with a pair of skin coloured tights while the weather is still chilly, put your hair up in a messy top knot and wear silver glittery eyeliner and the look is complete!

■ Benny Colour block clutch, £35, Oliver Bonas

■ Pagila Silver Trainers, £110, Pied a Terre

So step into the future this spring with a refreshing new look hot off the catwalk! Happy shopping!

Christina x

■ Check Boucle Pelmet Skirt, £40, Topshop


For more fashion ideas visit Follow Christina on twitter @justsofashion










o on, admit it, you’re already suffering from intense treadmill fatigue and talk of new fitness craze Tabata has gone right over your head.

Give your face and body a home workout. Lisa Haynes reveals the beauty product equivalents of pumping iron

If you feel like a spare part in the gym, sprint back to the sanctuary of your bathroom. The beauty world has some seriously heavyweight products to keep your face and body fit – no gym membership or sweat required. And if you’re still bravely clinging on to the cross-trainer? Indulge in these products before or after your workout as a changing room treat. Whip slack skin and lazy complexions back into shape with these beauty boosters. Face lifting

Give your complexion a bootcamp-style workout with Bliss’ Firm, Baby Firm, right. The dual-action serum gets to work firming up the delicate eye zone and improving elasticity in the chin area, £55 (

Sports massage Facial gyms haven’t been invented yet so engage in the next best thing – massage. You don’t need a sports physio to relax your muscles. Self-massage in the mirror allows oxygenated blood to flow freely, releasing toxins and alleviating festive puffiness. Celebrity facialist Sarah Chapman makes uplifting massages easier with her Facialift device, above. The massager features eight heads and 48

natural fat burning for smoother, firmer, tauter skin around the waist and tummy, £35 (

To encourage some youthful bounce, try Clinique’s Repairwear Uplifting Firming Cream, below. A skin personal trainer in a pot, it visibly tightens, lifts and firms the face and neck, £52 (0 870 034 2566)

If you don’t fancy the scary chest press contraption at the gym, try This Works’ Perfect Cleavage Firming Lotion. Boost your pecs minus the push-up bra, with this nourishing lotion that plumps and enhances your decolletage, £38 (

nodules to lift and sculpt the face and aid lymphatic drainage, £25 ( Limb-er up Massage as you cleanse with Magnitone’s Pulsar Arms are the holy grail of a Daily Skin Cleansing & Toning System For Face fit body, thanks to Mrs And Body, above. The 15,000 rotational Obama’s toned triceps. oscillations per minute not only removes deep Combine some arm lifts – impurities but noticeably firms and tightens skin with dumbbells or baked as it polishes, £129.99 (Boots). bean cans (or failing that,

Body sculptors

Don’t get complacent just because your skin is camouflaged by countless winter layers. Keep up your body skincare routine with high intensity toners, and you’ll be one step ahead the next time you have to strip down in front of an audience. Stay dedicated to a 30 -second massage routine for 30 days straight with Mio’s Get Waisted Sculpting Body Shaper, right. Dubbed ‘rehab for abs‘, it vows to increase

shopping bags) – with a firming formula designed to combat bingo wings.

Fear sleeveless tops no more, when armed with Soap & Glory’s The Firminator Targeted Arm Firming & Toning Formula, right. It not only tones but exfoliates, to blur away the imperfections we’ve been hiding away in woolly jumpers, £12 (Boots). Wave goodbye to sagging skin for 2014 using Pupa’s Inner Arm Shaping Cream, top. To maximise results, apply to the inner arms in an energetic massage motion from the elbow to the shoulder, twice a day for eight weeks to maximise tightening, £42 (


There are plenty of toning and weight exercises designed for your body, but don’t let your face miss out on the action. Invest in a firming potion for some facial fitness. Unlike the ‘real’ gym, when it comes to the face, encouraging plumpness is key to diminishing fine lines.






Give fine hair the brush off. Lisa Haynes reveals how to fatten up your tresses with some insider tips and tonics.


t’s estimated that around 10.9 million women in the UK have fine hair – that’s 40 per cent of the female population, according to Kantar World Panel consumer research.

While the ageing process can result in thinning tresses due to hormonal changes, a dramatic difference in hair texture can strike at any age, with triggers including poor diet, extreme stress, hormonal imbalances or childbirth. “Big or ‘fat’ hair is the picture of health and can make even the most ordinary of outfits look fabulous,” says Katie Hamburger, creative stylist at Regis Salons. “It’s thick, healthy and full of life, so it all starts with keeping your hair in great condition.”

■ Charles Worthington Salon at Home Volume & Bounce Thick & Full 3D Boosting Creme, £6.99 (Boots)

Go big on the prep and fling back a fuller mane for spring. Body building It’s impossible to create more hair, but you can lather up with products that create thicker, healthier locks right from the follicle. Choose a thickening shampoo, apply into your palms and give your scalp a DIY massage for a couple of minutes. Massaging the scalp can stimulate blood flow, which can strengthen hair roots. “Apply a light conditioner to ends only, so the




■ L'Oreal Paris Elvive Fibrology Thickening Masque, £5.49 (Boots)

strands aren’t weighed down by any extra product,” Hamburger advises. For an extra volumising boost, she recommends a leave-in treatment specifically for thinning hair: “Nioxin’s Diaboost is ideal for thin hair as it strengthens and improves the density of each hair strand, creating volume and thickening the hair.” Heavyweight styling ■ Michael Van Clarke Thickening Blow-dry Spray, £17.50 (vanclarke. com/shop)

How you wear your hair can make all the difference between fine or fabulous. Avoid styles that hang limp around your face and opt for bodyifying layers and clever cuts.

“A shorter cut will help when it comes to thinning hair, as well as adding in layers to create body and movement,” says Norris Ogario, founder and creative director of Ogario. Gentle waves will add extra texture and a fuller appearance. Place inch sections of hair into medium-size rollers all over the head, apply heat with a hairdryer, then let them cool completely. If you prefer your hair off your face, certain styles can give the gift of volume – try a Bardot-inspired ponytail that involves a bit of backcombing on day-old hair.

3D colour boost Hair colour has evolved from simple ‘blonde‘, ‘brunette’ or ‘cover grey’ ambitions to transformative textural results. “Ask for a multi-tonal colour – it’s a bit like a 3D effect,” says Josh Wood, hair colour expert. “If you have a slightly darker, medium and lighter colour, it will look as though you have almost three times the amount of hair than with a single shade.” Using different tones on different areas of the hair, a skilled colourist will play on light and dark to create the illusion of thicker looking hair. ■ Nanogen Growth Factor Treatment Serum, £29.95 (Boots).

■ Nioxin Diaboost Thickening Xtrafusion Treatment, £39.99 (www.nioxin.

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eases tense, tired muscles to unwind the body and spirit leaving you with renewed energy.

Aromatherapy is a form of alternative medicine. It is a holistic therapy that uses essentials oils to improve a person’s mind, body, mood and health. Essential oils are applied to the body during a massage and are absorbed into the blood stream and circulated around the body. The winner and a guest will be able to spend the day relaxing and unwinding at the Aqua Sana Benefits of aromatherapy include enhancing mood and the feeling of wellbeing, reducing World of Spa from 9am until 6pm. Enjoy refreshments on arrival, a scrumptious lunch at pain, improving blood and lymphatic circulation, balancing the hormones, strengthening the Vitale Café Bar and complimentary towel and immune system by helping to kill viruses and robe hire, as well as a Decléor Aromatherapy infections, encouraging better sleep and Mind and Body Re-energiser (55 minutes). improving the digestive system. The Mind and Body Re-energiser is a new All you have to do to be in with a chance of treatment at the spa that treats your skin to a winning is to answer the following question: the wonderfully soothing sensation and exquisite aroma of a warm Decléor What type of oils are used during an Aromessence Balm that is perfectly matched to aromatherapy massage? your needs. Let the expert touch of your therapist’s hands literally melts away stress and Answers should be emailed to with Spa Day in the subject line by 5pm on March 28. Entries must include your full name, address and telephone number. Entries without this information will not be entered into the competition. Entrants must be 18 years and above. The prize must be taken by August 31, 2014, subject to availability, excluding bank holidays, Valentine’s Day and Easter. The prize is not valid in conjunction with any other offer. Spending money, travel, meals other than stated, beverages, additional spa treatments or other expenditure is not included. No cash alternative is offered, no amendments or changes can be made to the prize content and the prize is non-transferable. Once booked, Aqua Sana normal terms and conditions apply to spa days. For full terms and conditions see page 65.



spa day is the perfect mother and daughter bonding experience and The County Magazine has teamed up with Aqua Sana spa at Center Parcs Longleat Forest to offer one lucky pair a very special prize of a spa day with a Decléor Mind and Body Re-energiser for two.




Iss {oh{ nsp{{lyz ISN’T GOLD ... It used to be that the only place you’d find the likes of gold, diamonds and pearls in the home was in a jewellery box. But now bling is finding its way into the bathroom as Emma Dance discovers






recious substances such as silver, gold, platinum diamonds and pearls being added to beauty products to give your skin an extra gorgeous glow. Some spas are offering uber-luxurious treatments, although these are mostly confined to the capital (Carol Joy London Diamond Facial with Oxygen at the swanky Dorchester on Park Lane for just £205 anyone?).

collagen range which has proved popular with celebrities like Sophie Anderton. They claim that the masks increase the skin's moisture saturation level by up to 92 per cent and that the nutrients are absorbed 10 times faster than a traditional face mask, instantly brightening the complexion, moisturising and nourishing the skin, resulting in a more youthful appearance. The range includes masks for face, lips, neck and breasts. A gold combination pack costs £37.50, available from

But the trend is making its way further afield and there’s plenty of products you can buy to treat yourself to a spot of pampering at home.



The claim is that pearl power is rich in amino acids, calcium, sugars and peptides which stimulate cell renewal, fight skin damage caused by sugars, help reduce pigmentation, as well as giving your skin a gorgeous glow. ■ Try it: The spa at Bowood near Chippenham is offering a Limited Edition Goddess Facial throughout February and March. The treatment uses 100 percent crushed pearls and as well as leaving your skin looking and feeling fabulous it’s super relaxing too. The treatment costs £90, and as an extra treat everyone who indulges will be given a pearl bracelet. Visit for more information. Multi-award winning Dermalogica’s Skinperfect Primer SPF30 (£37.50) is a three-in-one product which smoothes, protects and conditions skin, whilst correcting surface irregularities and creating a luminous finish. Velvety silicones help even out skin texture, creating an instantly smooth surface, whilst hydrolysed pearl (pearl powder), a fine powder rich in amino acids, calcium, sugars and peptides stimulates cell renewal, fights glycation and helps to fight pigmentation. Natural earth minerals, combined with the pearl powder, provide a

neutral tint, suitable for all skin tones, to enhance luminosity and radiance. For stockist details, please call 0800 591818 or visit

Platinum is one of the world’s most precious metals and now experts are claiming that it can do wonders for your skin too.

■ Try it: Scientists at Swiss skincare brand La Prairie discovered that Platinum helps the skin maintain perfect electrical balance in order to Silver improve hydration, protection, and receptivity to Silver is known as one of the best nutrients, transforming the skin to a remarkably antibacterial agents. It blocks the ageless state. They have developed a Platinum bacteria’s ability to transfer oxygen collection where the Platinum works in synergy through its cell walls, killing bacteria with peptides, vitamins, anti-oxidants and firming on contact and also has healing agents. La Prairie Cellular Cream Platinum properties which speeds the growth Rare costs £698 for 50ml. For more information and repair of cells. and stockists visit ■ Try it: Cor’s Silver Soap might Japanese brand DHC has developed a Xsh{pu|t look unremarkable but this is a [ps}ly Vhuvjvssvpk Zhunl6 Kvtwypzpun {oyll product that really packs a punch. pu{luzp}l zvs|{pvuz {v zvs}l khps€ zrpu wyvisltz4 The Silver Soap contains the unique patented lhjo wyvk|j{ pz mvyt|sh{lk |{pspzlz formula of Nano-Silver with Silica compound to uhuv{ljouvsvn€ {v wyv}pkl opnos€ ilulmpjphs help clear skin, remove make-up, even skin tone, punylkplu{z pu h spno{~lpno{ mvyt|sh {oh{ nl{z reduce spots / pore size, z{yhpno{ {v ~vyr6 replenish lost collagen, The Platinum Silver cleanse tone and exfoliate in Nanocolloid Lotion (£21), one, nourish the skin and Platinum Silver Nanocolloid reduce signs of ageing. A Milky Essence (£19.50) and starter size Silver Soap costs Platinum Silver Nanocolloid £15, with travel size costing Cream (£19.50). £35 and a full size bar at £100. For more information and to order visit Diamonds If claims that diamonds can slow Gold the signs of ageing are true then diamonds are a girl’s best friend in more than one way. Gold has been used in beauty rituals for thousands of years and Cleopatra was said to Using diamond dust in your beauty products can sleep in a gold face mask every night to enhance allegedly boost collagen, absorb or reflects light, the suppleness of her complexion and preserve and exfoliate skin. its natural luminosity. ■ Try it: Carol Joy London For The claim is that gold is said to minimise collagen Ever Intensive anti-ageing depletion and boost elasticity so using products, cream (£150 for 50ml) uses pure which have gold as an ingredient boosts blood diamond dust to activates the flow in skin and restores the skin’s micro-circulation, skin’s elasticity. hyaluronic acid to plump the skin and provide long-lasting hydration, ■ Try it: Jamela has palymitoyl tripeptide-5 to devised a 24K gold stimulate collagen production and anti-ageing golden millet oil, the foundation of the Carol Joy range, to repair, strengthen and protect skin.


Pearls are known for their glow, but can applying ground up pearls give your skin the same luminous quality?



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hile we might buy new clothes every season to follow the latest trends, it’s not often we revamp our makeup to match.

But just adding a few products to your makeup bag can give you a whole new look.

The experts at Aveda have created an easy step-by-step guide to creating this s unning Moroccan Mosaic look with t heir range of make-up based on naturally derived ingredients. The look is a global fusion of old and new cultures. The deep, red lip evokes an old-world quality, and the blue-green eye brings it back to the here and now. It is a culmination of a trip between past and present, and the colours are the souvenirs picked up along the way.

Complexion Create a luminous, fresh complexion by applying inner light tinted moisture broad spectrum SPF 15 and inner light concealer where needed. Set lightly with inner light mineral loose powder.

Eyes Prep the lids and apply petal essence single eye colour in peony blush from the lash line to just before the crease and from the brow to the crease using the medium eye colour brush. Leave the crease free of colour. Apply the same shade to the inner top and bottom corners of the eyes. Contour the eyes with petal essence single eye colour in aquamarine, centre right, using the eye contour brush and lightly diffuse. Apply the same shade along the outer half of the bottom lash line using the eye smudger brush and lightly diffuse. Apply petal essence face accents in plum touch to the apples of the cheeks using the blush brush. Diffuse the colour using the uruku bronzing brush if needed.

For added sheen apply petal essence single eye colour in peony blush, above right, to the cheeks.



Prep the lips. Line and lightly fill in the lips with nourish-mint lip liner in maple. Diffuse the colour using the eye smudger brush.

Curl the lashes and apply mosscara in black forest to the top and bottom lashes.

Apply nourish-mint rehydrating lip glaze in berry bud, above far left, to the lip centre.











■ Celebrity chef and restaurateur Marco Pierre White



he Sunday roast is a great British tradition. Sadly though, according to research by Welsh Lamb, it’s a tradition that’s dying out – with only two per cent of Brits sitting down to eat a weekly Sunday roast dinner every week.

Yorkshire pudding is a classic accompaniment for roast beef and everyone has their favourite recipe. When it comes to cooking Yorkshire puddings successfully, don’t forget to pre-heat the fat in the pudding tins really thoroughly before you add in the batter mixture. Don’t forget the gravy either. Make it with Knorr Rich Beef Stock Pot for really rich-tasting results.”

But despite this, the study of 1,000 people revealed that two-thirds of the nation feel that eating Sunday lunch or having dinner together is their most favourite way to bring the family together.

Roast Chicken Marco says: “My former mother-in-law taught me to put thyme and a whole lemon inside the chicken, after you’ve rubbed the outside and inside with a paste made from a Knorr Cube and a little olive oil.

And what better time to bring the family together than Mother’s Day? Celebrity chef, restaurateur and ambassador for Knorr, Marco Pierre White has shared some tips for preparing the perfect roast dinner. So if you do decide to cook your family a feast this Mother’s Day you’ll know what to do!

Roast Beef Marco says: “There’s something very nice about serving up a great roast beef meal to your family and friends. Begin by buying the best beef you can find, ideally a piece of well-marbled meat that’s been ‘hung’ (i.e. matured) for 28 days.

it to the oven. This browning caramelises the meat, making it extra tasty.

Apart from flavouring the chicken, it slows down the cooking process. It will mean your chicken cooks from the outside in, not the inside out, and keeps it moist. Before putting the chicken in the oven, put it in the pan with olive oil to get some heat into the chicken. That way when you put it into the oven, it starts to cook straight away and helps to caramelise.

While the beef is roasting in the oven, you can When the chicken is cooked, I put it in a bowl work on all the trimmings – with roast potatoes a and wrap it in cling film; this prevents all the must. juices from evaporating off. The juices can then Begin the cooking process by browning your beef I always like to offer a good range of vegetable be used for your gravy and the chicken will retain all over in a large pan on the hob over quite a its moisture.” side dishes with my roast meat. Try Carrots in high heat with just a little oil, before you transfer Parsley Sauce or my luxurious recipe for Savoy For more tips and recipes visit THE




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Sllw t|t IN THE PINK

Wine columnist Linda Piggott-Vijeh on how to add sparkle to Mother’s Day


ut mum in the pink this Mother’s Day. I always think that as one gets older anything pink becomes a bit like Marmite; you either love it or hate it, and of course novelist Barbara Cartland, famous for her pink frilly attire, springs readily to mind.

However, for Mother’s Day you can’t go far wrong in treating mum to a tipple or two if you stick to pink. Festive and fun, it will make her feel like a young girl all over again. Those of us seriously wanting to store up brownie points for the rest of the year will of course be planning breakfast in bed. With a little champagne perhaps? Forgive the cheesy theme, but champagne house G H Mumm produces a lovely rosy sparkler at £40 a bottle. Predominantly Pinot Noir (60%), it is intense, with yummy red-fruit flavours, and a hint of caramel and vanilla. Mumm remains one of only six champagne houses to hold a royal warrant from HM The Queen, so mum will be in good company.

For classy, still rosé wines without the fizz, Provence in the South of France still remains a top choice for me, and here I’d recommend Domaine Ott’s Clos Mireille Coeur de Grain Rosé, 2012. Made from a blend of Grenache, Cinsault and Syrah it is pale pink with golden highlights, elegant yet firm, and not all like the flabby, insipid cheap rosés on the market. Think wild strawberries, with a hint of citrus. Expect to pay around £30 a bottle.

■ A pink lady as made by our wine columnist Linda Piggott-Vijeh, pictured below

mixing it successfully is to give it a good old shake, giving the top a rim of pink foam when poured. Recipes vary but this one is from the Bartender’s Guild. You will need: Pink Lady 5cl Plymouth gin 2cl fresh lemon juice

If mum has more of a sweet tooth, then treat her to a bottle of Offley’s elegant Rosé Port.

1 to 2 dashes grenadine syrup 1 egg white (or 1tsp egg white powder)

Being what is known as fortified wine, it is high in alcohol at 19.5%, and available for £10.99. And finally, turn mum into a real Pink Lady with the cocktail of the same name. The exact origins of the cocktail are not known, but it was popular with high society ladies in the 1930s, and it is thought that Hollywood star and sex symbol Jayne Mansfield regularly enjoyed a Pink Lady

Pour all the ingredients into a shaker with ice Shake well before meals.

Strain into a cocktail glass

Garnish with a maraschino cherry This classic cocktail has a light blush colour, due A couple of these will be sure to put a pink glow to the addition of grenadine syrup, and the key to on her cheeks.


Sticking closer to home Chapel Down Vineyard, in Kent, continues to go from strength to strength, producing award-winning, champagnemethod sparkling wines, and currently has on offer a Brut Rosé, at £22. A real treat, it has tiny bubbles and is reminiscent of honeysuckle, summer berries and rhubarb.



[|uu€ SIDE UP

FOOD & DRINK 12 sunflower cupcakes Ingredients For the cake: 125g self-raising flour; 125g caster sugar; 125g unsalted butter; 2 large eggs; 1/2 tsp vanilla extract; 2 tbsps milk; 12 Gold or brown cupcake cases For the decoration: 125g softened butter; 250g icing sugar; 25g cocoa powder; 1-2 tbsp milk; 100g mini white marshmallows; 1 Jar Cake Angels Chocoholics Delight; Yellow glimmer sugar


These beautiful sunflower cupcakes are sure to bring a touch of sunshine to your Mother’s Day. They may look complicated but they are surprisingly easy to create so the little ones can get involved too.




1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC/gas mark 6 and line the tin with the cupcake cases. 2. Put all the ingredients except for the milk in the processor and then blitz till smooth. Pulse while adding milk, to make for a soft, dropping consistency, down the funnel. Alternatively put all ingredients into a large mixing bowl and use an electric hand mixer. If you are mixing by hand, using a bowl and wooden spoon, cream the butter and sugar, beat in the eggs one at a time with a little of the flour. Add the vanilla extract and fold in the rest of the flour, adding the milk to get the dropping consistency as before. Spoon into the cases equally. 3. Put in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes until the cup cakes are cooked and golden on top, check to see if the cupcakes are ready by inserting a cocktail stick into one of the cupcakes. If it comes out dry then the cupcakes are done.As soon as possible, take the cupcakes in their cases out of the tin and let cool, on a wire rack. 4. For the buttercream icing, mix butter with the icing sugar and cocoa powder. Continue to mix until smooth adding the milk to loosen the buttercream. 5. Spread the chocolate buttercream using a palette knife on top of the cupcakes, creating a flat surface and smooth gently with the palette knife. If the buttercream sticks to the knife, heat the knife in a glass of hot water, wipe quickly and smooth the buttercream, repeat if necessary. Don’t worry too much as most of the buttercream will be covered with marshmallows! 6. Take some white mini marshmallows and cut in half diagonally across the middle. Take a sandwich bag and fill ¼ full with the yellow glimmer sugar and add the cut marshmallows. The cut side is sticky and will stick to the sugar. Gently push the marshmallow halves into the chocolate buttercream, starting at the outside edge of the cupcake with the ‘pointy’ part of the cut marshmallow pointing outwards. Complete the circle. Now create a second inner circle of petals in the same way. 7. Cover the centre with chocolate drops or chocolate flakes to complete your sunflower cupcakes. For more recipes visit


■ Rolly’s Chocolate Brownies, £12.50 for six (including postage)

However old you are, you always need your mum sometimes. Mother’s Day on March 30 is the perfect excuse to spoil your mum

and show her just how much she means to you. Here’s a few ideas for gifts that are sure to make her feel a million dollars. ■ M&S Message in a bottle, £3.50, Marks & Spencer

■ Love Boo Luxury Mummy Spa Kit, £39.99,




■ Meadow cafetiere, £31.95,


■ Me to You, Tatty Teddy, Small Glass ‘Mum’ Frame, £8,

■ Jo Malone London Limited Edition English Rain White Jasmine and Mint Cologne, £82, Jo Malone stores and

■ Dragee Flowers, £2.30 each from Carluccio’s stores and

■ Monsoon Home duck-egg jewellery boxes from £80,


■ Mum’s Notes Journal, £12.95,

■ Hyacinth in a butterfly tin, £4, Dobbies



[|p{l HOMES


■ Senza bath by Burgbad, available from Taylor’s Etc

Interior Designer Lesley Taylor gives her advice on how to make your home hotel chic.

H Interior designer and member of the BIID Lesley Taylor is the Design Director of Taylor’s Etc.




ave you ever indulged in a luxury weekend break at a trendy boutique hotel or stayed in a five star resort that you just didn’t want to leave? Wouldn’t it be great if you could experience that hotel style of living each and every day within the comfort of ■ Decor project by Taylors Etc your own home? front door should welcome you with open arms, making you feel relaxed and special. First Well, I have a few tricks up my sleeve which impressions mean everything so the hallway is means you can. always a good place to start. A jumbled heap of Depending on how far you want to take this smelly shoes by the door won’t give you that interior trend, you can add a few new accessories hotel feeling you’re after so invest in a dedicated for an enhanced sense of calm and relaxation, or cabinet or chest to solve the problem instantly. you can alter the décor to achieve a pampered Provide your hallway with that all important paradise that goes all out. By the time you’re ‘wow’ factor impression that visitors will never finished, your home will impress even the top forget. hotelier. Just like the reception area or lobby of a hotel, every home, as soon as you step through the

This can be achieved with a grand, freestanding mirror, with a decorative edging that catches


■ Rossetto Diamond bed, above, and DG towels, right, all available from Taylor’s Etc

your eye as soon as you return home. Not only great for making a style statement, but mirrors have the added benefit of reflecting light to make the area appear more spacious; perfect if it’s a small hallway you’re dealing with. Depending on the size of your hallway, you may also like to include a statement piece of furniture such as a lavish armchair that greets you as you walk through the door. Opt for a pale shade on the walls and maybe a feature print escalating up the stairs that tempts you to your luxurious hotel style bedrooms and bathrooms. Floor tiles in a light shade will also provide your hallway with an open-airy feel. Compared to carpet, hard flooring is easier to keep clean, allowing your home to constantly sparkle. The key with the hallway is to create a clutter-free, yet homely feel that invites you in.

The accessories you choose will enhance the overall décor, so for a romantic boudoir opt for deeper shades of silk and velvet. For a kitsch, vintage appearance experiment by combing floral patterns with spots and gingham. To ensure your special resting place remains clutter-free, incorporate storage wherever possible. This could come in the form of a bed with secret drawers or internal compartments for the wardrobes. Either way, socks strewn across the foot of the bed is never a good look. Remember, your home might end up looking like a plush hotel but you won’t be able to rely on a maid service to keep the place looking neat and tidy, so the need for clever storage is a must! Taking inspiration from boutique hotels, open-plan bedroom/bathrooms are now more popular than ever.

warm fluffy towels all year round and if your towels are starting to look a little worn, it should be out with the old and in with the new. Scented candles will set the mood for long soaks in the tub and if the budget allows, under-floor heating is a must to give you that added comfort when you step out the shower. Keep bathroom essentials like toothpaste and razors out of sight. You may need to invest in a vanity unit or modular bathroom furniture to keep your bathroom organised. Whilst you don’t want your bathroom to look cluttered, display any lavish soaps and hand creams that have been given to you at Christmas or for a birthday.

One of the things I love about staying away is coming downstairs in the morning to a beautifully laid breakfast table. Whether you opt for pristine No longer is a free-flowing layout that breaks matching china, or mismatched vintage pieces, ensuring your table is always laid allows you to When you think of luxury-hotels, you down the boundaries only to be enjoyed on a automatically think of a bedroom filled with a romantic break, many of us are now transforming make it into a feature and avoids you or the kids using it as a dumping ground. huge bed that has been adorned thoughtfully with our bedrooms into sanctuaries of relaxation by throws and cushions. This can easily be incorporating a statement freestanding bath, so You can take this theme as far as you want to and replicated. For a bed fit for a king, treat yourself we can enjoy a long, hot soak without being whether your budget allows for a few new to some new bed linen and experiment with locked away in the bathroom. accessories or a re-think of the layout of your cushions. Mix and match styles, shapes and If you’re not quite ready to take the plunge, make bedroom and bathroom, the results will make materials for a beautiful arrangement. Here you sure your bathroom or en-suite resembles that of such a difference to how your home looks and can spend as much or as little as you like and feels. So good in fact, you will never want to a hotel bathroom. It needs to be stylish, whether you choose to shop the High Street or comfortable for when you need it to cocoon you leave! invest in some designer pieces you will be amazed from the stresses of daily life. Taylor’s Etc., at the difference a few scatter cushions can make. 02920 358400 Start with a heated towel rail so you can enjoy THE



12 £1,499 per person

8 £1,049 per person

days from

days from

Hong Kong & the Treasures of Thailand

New England & Niagara

This tremendous value escorted holiday combines the extraordinary former British colony where East meets West, ancient meets ultra-modern and the past collides with the future, with one of Earth’s most vibrant, bustling cities, a stay on the bank of the River Kwai and the chance to rest and relax in a beach-side resort hotel.

This wonderful tour combines the exquisite Fall scenery of America’s Northeast with the equally breathtaking sight of one of the world’s greatest natural wonders. With opportunities to discover the great city of Boston and to visit historic Plimoth Plantation, this is a marvellous value tour to savour and enjoy.

Our price includes:

Our price includes:

Departing September to November 2014, January, February, May and June 2015

• Return flights from London Gatwick and Birmingham to Hong Kong, returning from Bangkok • Sightseeing in Hong Kong and Bangkok • Bangkok canal cruise • Thai floating market visit

• • • • • •

River Kwai Railway journey Flight from Hong Kong-Bangkok Nine nights’ hotel accommodation Buffet breakfasts in Thailand Air-conditioned coach travel The services of a tour manager

Departing September and October 2014

• Return flights from London Gatwick and Birmingham • Scenic Berkshire Hills • Elegant Boston • Stunning ‘Fall Foliage’ colours • New Hampshire and Vermont’s ‘Lakes & Mountains’ region

• Wondrous Niagara Falls • Six nights’ accommodation at good quality hotels • Comfortable coach travel • The services of a tour manager

6 £889

10 £1,269

days from

days from

per person

per person

Moscow & St. Petersburg

India - Tigers and the Taj Mahal

Don’t miss this opportunity to see two of the world’s must-see cities in one unforgettable week. Red Square, the Kremlin, Victory Park in Moscow, and the Hermitage, the Admiralty and Peter & Paul Fortress in the ‘Venice of the North’ are just some of the highlights of this wonderful holiday.

Safari to see the tigers at Ranthambhore and tour India’s Golden Triangle – Delhi, old and new, Agra with the Taj Mahal and Jaipur, the pink city.

Departing July to October 2014

Our price includes: Moscow to St. Petersburg • Flights to Moscow from Bristol, returning from St. Petersburg • Two nights’ bed & breakfast accommodation at the Park Inn • Two nights’ bed & buffet breakfast Pribaltiyskaya hotel, St. Petersburg accommodation at the Holiday Inn Suschevsky, Moscow • Guided city tours • One night in a first-class compartment • The services of a tour manager on the overnight sleeper train from

Departing September to November 2014 and January to November 2015

Our price includes: • Return flights to Delhi from London Heathrow • Eight nights’ accommodation on a half-board basis plus four lunches • Two nights at Ranthambhore with an included morning and afternoon safari to see the tigers • Overnight cottage stay with a cookery demonstration, for the real Indian

experience • Elephant or jeep ride to Amber Fort and city tour of Jaipur • Guided tours of Old & New Delhi and Agra including the Taj Mahal • Transfers and touring by airconditioned coach • The services of a tour manager

0843 487 5823 Quote MSN Calls cost 5ppm from a BT landline. You may also be charged a connection fee. Mobile and other providers’ charges may vary. Operated by Newmarket Promotions/Air Holidays Ltd. ABTA V787X/V7812, ATOL protected 2325. Prices are per person, based on two sharing. Subject to availability. Single supplements apply. Terms and conditions apply.

Travel Offers 5 £739 per person

8 £769 per person

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days from

Orkney, Shetland and the Highlands

Capri, Pompeii & the Amalfi Coast

A holiday on the beautiful and contrasting islands of Orkney and Shetland is not to be forgotten.

Join us in the Neapolitan Riviera and enjoy a wonderful week of fascinating sights and Italian warmth and hospitality. Based in three-star half-board accommodation in exquisite Sant’ Agata, this hugely popular holiday includes escorted visits to Pompeii and the enchanting Isle of Capri, and a breathtaking drive along the Amalfi Coast.

Departing April, May, August and October 2014

Our price includes: • Return flights to Edinburgh from Bristol & all coach & ferry travel in Scotland • Short tour of Royal Deeside & full day tours of Shetland and Orkney • Visits to Pitlochry, John O’ Groats and Dunrobin Castle (entrance payable locally) • Overnight dinner, bed and breakfast accommodation in an en suite, inner 2

berth cabin on ferry • Two night’ bed and breakfast in the three star Kirkwall Hotel, Orkney with dinner on the second evening • One night’s dinner, bed and Scottish breakfast at the Carrbridge Hotel, Carrbridge • One suitcase allowance per person • The services of a tour manager

Departing June to October 2014

Our price includes: • Return flights to Italy from Bristol • Seven nights’ half-board accommodation at the three-star Hotel Delle Palme, Sant’ Agata (three & four-star upgrade hotels available for a supplement) • Full Day visit to Capri

• • • • •

Entrance to the ruins at Pompeii Amalfi Coast drive Coach travel and transfers One suitcase allowance per person The services of a tour manager

8 £819

8 £879

days from

days from

per person

per person

Istanbul & the Treasures of Ancient Turkey Nice, Monte Carlo & St Tropez Departing May, June and September to November 2014

Departing April, May and August to October 2014

Explore one of the world’s most enthralling cities and discover some of its finest Classical sites on this fascinating escorted tour, which, in addition to Istanbul, Troy, Pergamon and Ephesus, includes a visit to Gallipoli’s poignant Anzac Cove, a three-night resort-stay and the chance, on an optional excursion, to visit fabled Pamukkale.

This wonderful week-long holiday in the heart of the sparkling Côte D’Azur offers plenty of time to relax and enjoy the glorious Riviera surroundings, and also includes four wonderful excursions taken in the company of our friendly, knowledgeable tour manager, who will bring to life this beautiful corner of the world.

Our price includes:

Our price includes:

• Three nights’ half-board • Return flights to Turkey from accommodation in the Tusan Beach Birmingham Resort, Kusadasi • Three nights’ bed and breakfast accommodation in the Olympiat Hotel, • Guided tours to Istanbul, Anzac Cove, Troy, Pergamon and Ephesus Istanbul • One night’s half-board accommodation • The services of a tour manager in the Iris Hotel, near Canakkale

• Return flights to Nice from Bristol • Airport to hotel transfers • Seven nights’ dinner, bed and breakfast accommodation at the three-star Quality Hotel in Menton • A visit to Monte Carlo • A visit to Nice and St Paul de Vence

• • • •

A visit to Ventimiglia & San Remo Visit to St Tropez & Cannes One suitcase allowance per person The services of a tour manager

0843 487 5823 Quote MSN These suppliers are independent of Local World. When you respond, the holiday supplier and Local World may contact you with offers/services that may be of interest. Please give your mobile or email details if you wish to receive such offers by SMS or email. We will not give your details to other companies without your permission.



Spring is the perfect time for a clear-out and decluttering with some clever storage solutions could bring calm and harmony into your home, says Gabrielle Fagan.

■ Bloomingville Neon pink acrylic hanging box, £67, Debenhams


t’s not unusual at this time of year to feel as though your possessions are winning the space war and you’re being squeezed out. But of all the aspirational (if unrealistic) goals we set ourselves, decluttering and getting your house organised is, arguably, the most achievable.

“Under the stairs is the definitive dumping ground for assorted, unused odds and ends,” says Genda.

“Ample research suggests that clutter and mess causes us untold stress. Stuffed cupboards, dishevelled drawers, haphazardly strewn and displaced possessions without a designated ‘living’ space all culminates into a loud, unrelenting visual ‘noise’ that can make us feel boxed-in, overwhelmed and even anxious.”

£35.91. Just as useful are six 32-litre Underbed Storage Clear Platinum Boxes, £17.94, Home Bargains. A neat Highland 6 Drawer Suitcase Dresser, £375, Graham & Green, combines charm with practicality.

Top tip: As a short-term solution, put hooks inside the cupboard door for hanging up bags and get transparent boxes for larger items, so they stay dust free and you can view contents without “Nothing acts more like a tonic for the hung-over having to rummage. soul than a jolly good tidy,” says Barbara Genda, Storage stars: 6 Pair Boot Rack, £88, Graham & founder and principal designer at Barbara Genda Green. Vintage Wooden Storage Crates, available Bespoke Furniture. in small, medium and large with a set of nine for

■ Paint shoeboxes, use PlastiKote Twist & Spray Colour spray paint, £8.79 for 400ml can, available from DIY and craft stores, and label with photos of contents




Luckily, there are a multitude of solutions for organising mess – particularly if you’re a natural hoarder – from stackable boxes to sophisticated storage systems. Pack all of that mess away and immediately you’ll discern the positive effects. You’ll have a calmer environment in which you can relax, be productive and at the very least, think straight,” she says.

Under-stairs sort-out

Free-up living space “Decluttering isn’t about throwing everything away,” says Simon Glanville, managing director of storage specialists, Store. “It’s about losing what’s useless and ugly in order to have space for things that are useful and beautiful. But it’s easy to feel overwhelmed and keep putting off that clear-up.” Top tip: Always de-clutter before buying new storage, otherwise you won’t know the right solution for your needs. Explore under-utilised spaces, like landings, and consider boarding a loft


■ Novecento storage system including, Book cases, £2,120, TV holder unit £1,050, four-cube cabinet, £2,300, Natuzzi

mid-century sideboards work well too. Dulux Made By Me paint collection is designed specifically for furniture and small projects and there are online tutorials at

■ Home office on a half landing designed by Barbara Genda for Barbara Genda Bespoke Furniture. Design starts from £1,200 per linear metre

Star storage: A clever Cattelan Italia DNA Bookcase, £523, Lime Modern Living, allows books to star in a spiralling tower with the support virtually invisible. Transform a tight space with a Solid Oak Tall Narrow Five-Shelf Bookcase, £119, Hampshire Furniture. Barker & Stonehouse has the quirky red curved, wall-mounted, Kartell Bookworm Medium with 11 Bookends, £401.

Play for space

clothing by using the reverse hanger technique. Turn all hangers the wrong way round and then when you wear something and put it back replace the hanger the right way, which at the end of a few months will give you a guide to the pieces you wear regularly and others which could be stored or given away.” Top tip: Paint shoe boxes, use PlastiKote Twist & Spray Colour spray paint, £8.79 for 400ml can, available from DIY and craft stores, and label with photos of contents. Star storage: Elfa Classic Best Selling Wardrobe II, £305, and Scarf & Pashmina Organiser – Boho Dress, £12.50, Store. Shoe addicts could show off by displaying their favourite pairs in Ikea’s illuminating Synas LED Lighting Boxes, £25 each.

“The ‘sock monster’ is a myth. Instead, it should be renamed the ‘DVD and CD monster‘,” says Storage Star: Super sleek white gloss lacquer, Genda. “These seem to replicate themselves, spill Novecento Storage, available from Natuzzi, out of drawers and crowd shelves. Think about combines three-in-one functions to house a home multimedia systems that include handy storage – cinema, library and a sideboard all on one wall. perfect for concealing or displaying your library of Book cases, £2,120, TV holder unit £1,050, DVDs.” four-cube cabinet, £2,300. Top tip: Ensure you bring lots of white and Book lovers neutral colours into your cabinetry and furniture, “Books can look beautiful when displayed to enhance the illusion of space. properly so avoid stacking them two deep, or Star storage: Create a unique wall display with leaving them in piles everywhere,” says Marianne vinyl records in Art Vinyl Play & Display Frames, Shillingford, creative director and head of the set of three, £99, John Lewis. Alternatively, pop design service at Dulux. CDs or DVDs into a funky Bloomingville Neon “You can work on the principle that if you Pink Acrylic Hanging Box, £67, Debenhams. Red haven’t looked at individual titles in a couple of Lilly’s contemporary Cube CD Rack, £39.95, in a years, you’re probably unlikely to read them zebrano wood veneer, can hold up to 60 CDs. again, and some could be consigned to a charity MultiYork’s Copenhagen Home Entertainment shop. Storage Unit, £439. “Order books so you can find them easily – Design for dressers alphabetically, by genre or those you’ve recently “A bed is the functional heart of a bedroom and read. Look for different ways to display them; also harbours the most overlooked source of shelves over and around doorways look hidden storage,” says Simon Glanville at Store. “A particularly effective.” tucked-away under-the-bed storage system keeps Top tip: Paint an old bookcase, or look on eBay, a lot of clutter neatly out of sight. Freecycle or local charity shops for second hand ■ Elfa Classic, Best selling Wardrobe II, £305, “Of course, wardrobe space is vital. Try to edit ones and do a make over. Fashionable, low so you can store seasonal items.




Balidon Place



The last few high specification 4 bedroom homes are available now. ■ 4 bedroom detached houses with double garage and parking spaces ■ Premier Plus interior specification with spacious kitchen/dining area, utility, cloakroom and ensuite bathroom ■ Impeccable style, design and finish ■ Constructed by award winning builder C G Fry & Son ■ Ready to move into. Prices from £390,000. Help to Buy available on properties up to £600,000

Call 0758 4550393 or 01305 259600 for an appointment to view or email:

NHBC Regional Award Winner 2010, 2011, 2012 & 2013

Visit for property information and other Fry developments throughout the South West





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■ Location, Location, Location’s Phil Spencer is working with npower to help bill payers save energy and keep their home warm

A recent survey from npower found two-thirds of people from the South West describe their homes as inefficient and 59 per cent admit they don’t know how to solve the problem. Despite the fact that residents in Bristol who made changes to make their home more energy efficient saved, on average, a whopping £710 per year, and those in Taunton £275 a year, npower revealed that only 13 per cent of people surveyed installed a new boiler last year. In Taunton only 29 per cent of people installed loft installation with 35 per cent making improvements to their wall insulation. According to npower making the home more energy efficient could not only save money on bills, but also increase a home’s value by as much as 38 per cent.

energy-saving home is an excellent way to add to the value of your property making it a great investment.” Simon Stacey, Director, Energy Services at npower said: “We want to help consumers understand that in this competitive market, an energy efficient home is a real selling point and one that will soon become a standard requirement. We are committed to improving

Ph}pun hu lulyn€ 5zh}pun ovtl pz hu ljlsslu{ ~h€ {v hkk {v {ol }hs|l vm €v|y wyvwly{€ homes in the South West and for many people we can do this for free.”

Tips from Phil Spencer on the most cost effective To raise awareness of the issues, Location, ways of making your home more energy efficient: Location, Location’s Phil Spencer is working with npower to help bill payers save energy and keep When you come to selling your home, a their home warm with simple, easy to follow tips. Domestic Energy Assessor will inspect your home before preparing your Energy Performance Phil comments: “We’re looking forward to Certificate (EPC). Your home will be graded A showing people ways to save energy and money, G where A is the most efficient, with a possible without breaking the bank. Having an

maximum score of 100, and G is the least efficient. The current average score for existing homes is a low D/high E rating and a score of 46. There are a simple range of improvements you can take to boost your home into a 'C' rating, and stand out from the D/E crowd. Don't forget, if purchasers are looking at similar homes in similar locations but your home has a C rating and others have an E rating, it could be the factor that clinches the deal. Some of the main areas a Domestic Energy Assessor (DEA) will look at for compiling the EPC are: ■ Walls and wall insulation: Are cavity walls filled; do solid walls have extra internal or external insulation on them? ■ Roofs: Is the roof flat or pitched and is there at least 270mm of insulation in the loft? ■ Windows: Are windows, where the house is not subject to listing requirements, double glazed? ■ Heating: Is the boiler old or new? Do radiators have thermostatic radiator valves? To find out if they could qualify and which improvements they may be able to get for free, householders can visit or contact the independent Energy Saving Advice Service on 0300 123 1234.



t’s not location, location, location. In the South West it’s all about insulation, insulation, insulation. Despite suffering from some of the country’s worst weather conditions, people in the South West are missing out on savings of hundreds of pounds.




Uvyl {ohu A FEELING




GARDENING Hannah Stephenson finds out more about creating a garden with texture from Italian garden designer Luciano Giubbilei


talian garden designer Luciano Giubbilei is famous for his creations of understated elegance, simple and clean symmetrical design complimented by his use of nature, materials, light, space and art.

His style is modern but uses formal approaches and clipped plants, while his designs are dominated by trees, hedges and grasses, with frequent repeat planting – and there is an all-important texture to all his gardens too.

“Texture is not something that we just look at, it’s something that we experience,” Giubbilei explains. “Certain surfaces make you observe where you are going to be walking, for example. Smooth surfaces are easy to walk on, which will encourage you to look further afield to observe a space more in depth.” Texture isn’t solely focused on the physical feel of something, he continues. “Texture is associated with emotion. The way we experience space isn’t just visual.” He has used this vision to create the Laurent-Perrier show garden at this year’s RHS Chelsea Flower show, comprising a simple geometric layout juxtaposed with detail which explores the contrasting concepts of stillness and movement, elegance and rawness.

A strong wooden sculpture designed by highly acclaimed American artist Ursula von Rydingsvard will also contribute to the garden’s exploration of texture. He insists you don’t need designers of the highest level to make texture work though, and says it can be created in any garden, even the smallest space. “If I just had a patio and I wanted to create texture, the only thing I need is one beautiful tree. That would create the texture. In a courtyard garden, if you bring in a beautiful tree the winter structure will be the bark, which will create the texture, followed by the leaves or flowers or berries, creating a play on light, shadowing the area in a different way.” He favours amelanchiers, small deciduous trees or shrubs with showy white flowers in early spring, red to purple fruits and often good autumn colour. Ornamental cherries are also suitable as stand-alone specimens in small areas. Choose patio plants carefully to create different textures. Cluster groups of pots together combining clipped evergreens with more fluid plants such as ferns. He favours predominantly

■ Trees, box and lawn give gardens a variety of texture; inset, Luciano Giubbilei

green schemes, but these could be enhanced with the inclusion of pots of bulbs such as Tulipa ‘Belle Epoch‘, with double flowers in shades of coffee mousse, flushed with pink. In a wider space, placing clipped plants such as box or beech hedging next to wilder varieties such as ferns, which are softer and less uniform, will create an effective contrast of stillness and movement.

will usually make your space feel larger.” Ornamental grasses such as miscanthus and calamagrostis can also create a feeling of space. “The big leaves of the darmera can be used with the feathery plants and will create different textures at different times of the day.

“Early morning, when the sunlight is low and the light is quite blue, the big leaves will be more predominant, whereas in the afternoon and If you include concrete in hard landscaping you evening the feathery structures will come into need to put another element close to it to create the light. You can create different moods shadows on the surface. depending on the time of day.” “You have to think about how the light can move In the Laurent-Perrier garden, the hard materials on the concrete rather than the concrete as a include a concrete wall, a cedar wood sculpture material. I would put a beautiful tree in front of a with a backdrop of concrete. concrete wall, which will play on light within the Giubbilei adds how he believes in the use of surface of the concrete. Light and reflection are straight lines in his designs.“I understand very important elements in the way we feel. geometric. From the moment you start to make “People can create a mood in their garden using curves on the drawing board, either you are a green, big-leaved plants such as hostas, ligularia natural talent or it’s very difficult to mimic and darmera (umbrella plant), which give you something natural. For me, the straight line has weight in a border. That weight also creates a an honesty about it but the curve is trying to certain feeling of calm.” mimic. Add plants with a fine and feathery structure, “You never have to see a straight line. It can be such as asters or cosmos, which will play with perfectly hidden with planting on the very edge the light. of the line, such as Calamagrostis ‘Karl

“It’s more likely that you will want to touch and Foerster’.” feel them. If you use more plants with fine ● The RHS Chelsea Flower Show runs from May texture elements which allow the light through, it 20-24.


The walls of concrete and metal combine lustres and materials; the stone surfaces are executed with contrasting finishes; the flow and reflection of the water gives light and animation to the space. The planting features delicate forms alongside bolder architectural leaves –providing a colour spectrum of yellows, creams and whites, punctuated by accents of blue, with a backdrop of deep green foliage.



COME AND MEET Frederick Augustus the


14-17 Walcot Buildings, London Road, Bath Tel. 01225 338813 The largest antiques retailer in Bath & voted in the top 50 antiques shops in Britain, by the Independent on Sunday

Maybe even find time to look at some antiques... we’ve got everything from 17th century furniture to 1970s retro and kitchenalia, spread through lots of showrooms. We’re on the A4, London Road, near Morrisons. About 15 minutes walk from the bottom of Walcot Street. We’re open 10-6 Monday to Saturday. 11-5 on Sunday. We have our own parking at the rear, accessed via Bedford Street.

No Gimmicks, No Fuss, Just QUALITY FENCING & GARDEN PRODUCTS At Excellent Prices

Somerlap Mark, Somerset, TA9 4NR

01278 641671




f you are looking for somewhere to take your Mum this Mother’s Day, why not visit the NGS’s open garden of the month, Fairfield near Williton with is opening to the public on March 30. Every year NGS gardens across England and Wales welcome about 750,000 visitors. Most gardens which open for the NGS are privately owned and open just a few times each year, giving members of the public a rare glimpse of the hidden gems. Some gardens open as part of a group with the whole community involved. The gardens give all the money raised directly to the NGS (including from the sale of teas and plants) and more than 80p in every pound is donated to charity. NGS gives away more than £2.5 million each year to nursing, caring and gardening charities and in the last 15 years has given away more than £25 million.

The 18th century park has fine trees and views of the Quantock Hills and the sea. The woodland garden is particularly interesting in spring, with many naturalised and unusual bulbs including snowdrops, crocuses, cyclamen, daffodils, fritillarias, wood anemones and bluebells among flowering Shrubs and Trees. The walled former kitchen garden now includes interesting small trees, shrubs and grass, with a rose garden and herbaceous border Children and adults can enjoy the small paved

Disability information: Wheelchair access possible – grassed paths. Facilities: Interesting plants for sale, Refreshments. NGS opening details: Sunday March 30 between 2pm and 5pm. Admission: £3.50, child free. Postcode: TA5 1PU Directions: Stogursey, 7 miles west of replica of the original maze.

Williton, 11 miles west of Bridgwater. From A39 Bridgwater to Minehead road turn north; garden 1½m West of Stogursey on Stringston road. No coaches. ● To see more gardens open for the NGS, see The Yellow Book, or Local County Leaflet, available from local Garden Centres, or go to: on to more woodland and pleasant walks.

There are many kinds of apple in the traditional Fairfield has much to enjoy whether exploring or orchard with daffodils planted in the grass, leading relaxing.


Fairfield has an informal garden of great variety, surrounding the house which dates from the 12th century, but was largely rebuilt in Elizabethan times.





Gardener and author Alan Titchmarsh talks to Laura Tremelling ahead of his visit to Bath later this month





“It is a beautiful place, I know it well and am fond books, as well as seven best selling novels, which have all made the Sunday Times Bestsellers list. of it.


opular television gardener Alan Titchmarsh is known to millions for his passion to the gardening world and his likeable presenting style.

He has twice been named Gardening Writer of the Year, and for four successive years was voted Television Personality of the Year by the Garden Writers’ Guild. However he has shown he is not just a one trick pony by writing seven novels, set in locations across the UK that he has visited and loved.

Titchmarsh said his love of Scotland inspired his latest novel, Bring Me Home: “The book is set in Scotland, where I have visited many times.




“I only write about places I know, that way my novels have a greater sense of place. “The setting is the atmosphere and is very important to the novel.” Tichmarsh has written more than 40 gardening

He said he likes to shut himself away in a barn at his home in Hampshire and let his imagination run free. Titchmarsh said: “It takes me about six months to write a novel, as I have to fit it in around my television work.

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“I have a loft in a barn at home where I write – always in silence and in the mornings. “I am a morning person, by about 2pm I am done. “I don’t plan what I write, I just do it. “I tried planning once, when I started a new novel, I tried to plan out all the chapters, but my mind ended up going off in a different direction and I thought ‘this is not for me’. Every writer is different, and what


When asked if her preferred writing fiction or non fiction he couldn’t chose, stating that they were both very different: “Writing a novel is completely different from writing my gardening books.

“I become very involved with my characters, and when I finish writing a novel it is like saying goodbye to old friends.” Titchmarsh shot to fame with gardening shows such as Ground Force, Gardener’s World and How to be a Gardener. He had a rural childhood, living on the edge

“My mother liked it, but my father was not keen.

“You get to let your imagination run wild, and create these imaginary worlds and characters. “I don’t base my characters on people I know, but they may have certain traits. However these all merge into one.

of Ilkley Moor in Yorkshire, and spent a lot of time out in the fresh air: “I first got interested in gardening at the age of ten, when I had a greenhouse. “It is important for children to be outdoors and to learn about how things grow.

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“It is a source of great satisfaction and delight to them when something they have planted grows, and then they eat it.” Titchmarsh is looking forward to coming back to Bath – a city he has visited many times. He said: “I love Bath, and have visited countless times. It is a beautiful city, and I particularly like the Royal Crescent and the abbey. “I play my CD of the Abbey choir a lot.” Bring Me Home is a tale of betrayal, mystery and romance set in a loch-side castle in the rugged Scottish highlands. It is released on March 13, for £18.99. Alan will be visiting Topping & Co booksellers in Bath to talk about his book on March 31. To book tickets to see him visit


works for some doesn’t for others.”



Kolszlh TRAVEL






■ The Draycott in London’s exclusive borough of Chelsea is a temple to English tradition

In the heart of the fashionable London borough of Chelsea lies a hotel that celebrates the best of British hospitality. Emma Dance revels in the hospitality


otels don’t get much more British than The Draycott. Tucked away on a quiet street in London’s exclusive borough of Chelsea, it’s a temple to English tradition, from the immaculate red brick Edwardian facade, to the chintzy decor, rooms named after theatrical greats, and the complimentary tea and biscuits at 4pm. It’s the sort of place you can imagine reducing an American tourist to tears of joy it fits the stereotype so well. But despite the nostalgia The Draycott somehow manages not to be stuffy and formal, and instead is cosy and friendly. When we arrive the staff are smiling and friendly and seem genuinely pleased that we’ve come to stay.

The room opens out on to a large garden which is something of a rarity for a central London

hotel, but as it’s mid-February and lashing down with rain we decide to stay warm and dry and appreciate the view from inside.

room in the basement.

The Draycott doesn’t have a restaurant but there’s 24-hour room service, or you can eat in the breakfast room. If you prefer to venture out, There’s another smaller, but no less inviting lounge at the front of the building, and a breakfast though, there’s plenty of places nearby though so


Before we are taken to our room we are given a tour of the public areas. The main space for guests to relax is the drawing room with the roaring fire, comfy sofas, an honesty bar, racks of magazines and - as it’s 4.30pm - pots of tea and plates of biscuits laid out for guests to help themselves.




you’re not short of choice. Our room was at the top of the house, and while we didn’t have a view of the garden it was fun looking at the houses across the way, getting a glimpse into the Chelsea lifestyle. There was a fireplace that produced very authentic looking flames at the flick of a switch, plenty of antiques, TV and DVD player and a large, comfortable bed. Keen to sample the tempting looking biscuits downstairs though, we make our way back to the drawing room. I already feel so much at home that I leave my shoes in our room and put on the slippers instead, and we wile away an hour or so curled up on a sofa with the weekend papers while the rain hammers down outside. At 6.30pm we are in for another treat, as every evening guests are treated to a complimentary glass of champagne. It’s a lovely touch which makes you feel special and is a great start to the night. As there seems to be a momentary break in the cloud we decide to head out to explore the area and staff are more than helpful, recommending pubs nearby and printing us maps. The Draycott is in the heart of Channel 4’s Made in Chelsea territory, with the designer shops of the King’s Road just a few streets away. Although I recognise many of the place names there’s no sign of Cheska, Binky, Spencer and co as we stroll through the quiet streets lined with grand looking houses with Ferraris, Aston Martins and Jaguars

parked outside. It’s very peaceful and rather than feeling like you’re in the heart of a bustling metropolis there’s a real neighbourhood vibe. The hotel’s pub recommendation is excellent. It’s lively and friendly and despite being in one of London’s most desireable postcodes the prices are not eye wateringly high. When we return to the hotel later that night we’re delighted to find yet another treat waiting for us - this time pots of steaming hot chocolate. We grab prime spots by the fire and thumb through glossy coffee table books while we drink. with cutting edge decor, spa and fine dining restaurant then The Draycott probably isn’t for It’s perfectly quiet, and if it weren’t for the you. occasional rumble of the Tube passing But if you want somewhere that’s luxurious, full underneath it would have been easy to imagine of tradition, where you’ll feel completely relaxed that we were in a country house in the and utterly spoiled then there’s nowhere better. Cotswolds rather than in the centre of London. I think it’s rare to feel so comfortable in a hotel and it’s great to have space outside our room to relax. Hotel lounges can feel very formal and impersonal but at The Draycott, it’s completely the opposite. Every effort is made to make you feel at home, and it absolutely works.




If you’re looking for a super sleek and chic hotel

Rates start from £285 for a double room with breakfast. For more information visit First Great Western runs regular train services between Bath Spa and London Paddington. For more information and tickets visit



■ Drawing of The Market House, above, by 14-year-old Emily Bishop, a pupil at Ansford Academy

■ The £350,000 revamp of the Shambles area of the building, which began in May last year

It had been hoped that the new enclosed Shambles would be unveiled at Castle Cary’s Big Christmas, held at the beginning of December, but the project suffered a setback after contractors discovered a number of problems while carrying out damp-proofing work which caused the project to overrun. Funding for the major project was secured through grants from South Somerset District Council, Castle Cary Town Council and Ansford Parish Council, as well as donations from local firms including Viridor Waste Management, Yarlington Homes and Crown Pet Foods. The finished project was unveiled on Saturday, March 1, when the Shambles was officially opened by Lady Gass, Lord Lieutenant of Somerset.



enovations to Castle Cary’s picturesque Market House have been completed. The £350,000 revamp of the Shambles area of the building, which began in May last year following an extensive fundraising effort, has seen the installation of a glazed roof, underfloor heating, a small kitchen area, wheelchair access and will seat up to 50 people for presentations and a range of indoor activities, complete with new furniture.





Every month Will Driver and his dog Islay will take you on an inspiring walk through our glorious countryside.


f you are at a loose end on a Sunday afternoon, want to get away for a couple of hours or if the dog is pestering you for a run, why not try this wonderful stroll from Ford through the beautiful, leafy By Brook valley to the photogenic village of Castle Combe, made famous by its use in films including Stardust and War Horse.

We think this is one of the best in the area and when I say we, I primarily mean my black Labrador, Islay, named after my favourite Scottish island. She loves it because it combines open fields, woods and water. So pull on your boots, put the dog in the car and enjoy this fantastic walk. 1. From the White Hart at Ford (SN14 8RP; 0 1249 782 213) turn right to the A420, cross over, heading right and then left up a track between ■ The beauty of Castle Combe and, below, the White Hart at Ford houses up to the kissing gate. 2. Bear gently right across the field and downhill through trees, then across the meadow to the brook.

Distance: about 4 miles Terrain: Hills and can be muddy in parts Stiles and Gates: Several; All dog friendly Difficulty: Moderate Time: 2 hours Map: OS Explorer 156: Chippenham & Bradford on Avon

3. Crossing the brook head up the steep hill, bearing left through trees and a tussock covered field to a level path looking out over wooded valleys. 4. Head left on the path over a stile, then through the wood to the road. Turn left, crossing the road, ignoring the first stile on your right and using the next right over the next stile.

11. Ahead, you enter a large sloped field. Bear right, following the well marked path around the right and top boundaries until you cross a stile onto a road.

5. Descend, bearing left through woodland to a road and turn left, ahead to Castle Combe. 6. The White Hart at Castle Combe (SN14 7HT; 01249 782 295) is on your right in the market square.

brook on your right.

9. Walking through fields with some trees, gently 7. Leaving the pub, turn left, walking back out of ascend through a wood, crossing a stile and the village the way you arrived until you reach a descend into the hamlet of Long Dean, past a second stone bridge with a footpath sign on your farm and mill. left. 10. Follow the track right, across a stone bridge. 8. Cross the By Brook and bear right through a At another mill, keep right and head uphill along a kissing gate. Continue along the path with the tree-lined sunken bridleway through a gate.




12. Turn left and descend to the A420. Turn right along the pavement and turn left, signed “Colerne”, back to The White Hart at Ford. For further information, maps and Google Earth links, please visit ● Will Driver was born and bred near Bath and is a Chartered Financial Planner and Founding Director of Fresh Perspective Financial Planning based at the stunning Hartham Park.

25 January — 5 May 2014

‘ b illi t exhibitio ’ Richard Dorment


The Telegraph


The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art ‘Vesuvius in Eruption, with a View over the Islands in the Bay of Naples’, Joseph Wright c.1776-80 Oil on canvas. © Tate, London 2013


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rowds gathered to celebrate the reopening of Nicholas Wylde’s jewellery store in Northumberland Place in Bath. Last year the store was devastated by fire, not long after Nicholas had celebrated 25 years in business. But within a week Nicholas was up and running again, trading in a temporary shop in The Corridor. Now he has returned to his old store, which has risen like a phoenix from the ashes. Actor Robert Powell did the honours of cutting the ribbon before the crowds were invited to see inside the refurbished store and to try their luck at unlocking a vault to win a special prize. Pictures by Philip Edwards,

■ Councillor Neil Butters, Robert Powell and Nicholas Wylde

■ Crowds gather to watch the grand opening of Nicholas Wylde’s store




Do you have an event that you would like to see featured on our Society pages? Please email


■ Jessica and Adam Lloyd-Smith

■ Jacky Medlock, Steven King and Sarah King

■ Ben and Laura Roberts

■ Sophie, Keith and Lynn Surry with Nicholas Wylde

■ Michael and Bonnie Porter


■ George and Sarah Matthews with Michelle




■ Julie Christian-Young

■ Dianna Adjucic with some tasty treats

■ Rolph and Allison Derek with staff from Nicholas Wylde




■ Colin Clarkson-Short and Sarah

■ Eva Baryla and Peter Edmondson

■ Harriet and Russ Mellor



■ Quil and Raine Harvey-Cantrell, Amy Williams and Loraine Morgan-Brinkhurst

■ Royal Crescent Hotel GB Skeleton Reception guests with Amy Williams and GB Skeleton Athletes

In attendance was 2010 Olympic Champion, Amy Williams MBE – now British Skeleton Vice-President; plus Team GB members World No 1 and 2014 gold medal winner Lizzy Yarnold – and Dominic Parsons, 2013 World Cup bronze ■ Marc Cuddihy, Nick Sandy and Joe Maguire medallist from Calgary. David Henwood, director at British Skeleton said: “We are experiencing record interest in the sport at the moment and already know what we need “We are so grateful to the Bath-based business community – especially the evening’s sponsors the to do to maintain our position as the world’s leading skeleton nation to 2018 and 2022. Royal Crescent Hotel, Morgan-Brinkhurst Consultancy and Ralph Allen Press – for taking “This includes a new Talent ID search programme the time to support our athletes and wish them straight after Sochi, the further re-development of well, ahead of Sochi 2014. We have based our the Bath Push Track venue and new vehicle, elite programme in the city since 2002 and are travel, logistics and IT/data support. now on our fourth Olympic cycle at the ‘Home of “We cannot do this without local support and all British Skeleton’ – the University of Bath Push are fantastic alignment opportunities for the best Track training centre.

of Bath’s businesses to lead us and ‘Join The Team’ after Sochi. “We are so grateful already, and really hope our success and story continues to strike a chord.” Guests from the Bath business community were invited to the reception and enjoyed the tremendous hospitality of the Royal Crescent Hotel, as well as meeting the athletes and taking part in a question and answer session with Amy, Lizzy and Dominic. Sharon Love, general manager at the Royal Crescent Hotel said: “The team at the Royal Crescent Hotel, together with our owners Topland Group of Companies were delighted to be given the opportunity to sponsor the GB Skeleton Winter Olympics Reception prior to their departure to Russia.” If you would like to support British Skeleton and the medal winning athletes, or find out more about the sport visit Read an interview with gold medallist Lizzy Yarnold in next month’s County Magazine. ● Pictures by Phil Searle of British Skeleton



ritish Skeleton struck gold in Sochi with Bath athelete Lizzy Yarnold triumphing on the track. Before the British Skeleton team flew out to the Winter Olympics, to wish them well the Royal Crescent Hotel in Bath hosted an exclusive celebration reception for members of the team, their supporters and Bath businesses.






















Lizzy Yarnold



Please contact Ann Oddy on 01749 832303 or Jo Reynolds on 01935 709707.


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t’s a very busy time over at Jaguar, what with the F-Type Roadster now prowling the streets and the just-announced Coupe version ready to do the same. There’s the high performance XJR to come too, but it’s the more mainstream models that are relevant to most of us – which is why the XF is so important.


The Jaguar XF 2.2D 163 is Jaguar’s introductory model with luxury and performance, but now also with a new high-economy diesel engine. Can it be thrifty and enjoyable? Matt Kimberley finds out.

Jaguar has given the XF a few key updates for 20 14 and, reflecting the times we live in, the most important change is the introduction of a more You still get the XF’s bit of theatre when you frugal new diesel engine. The 2.2-litre four start up, as the air vents glide electrically open cylinder unit improves on the previous version and the previously-flush circular gearlever rises with impressive figures of 129g/km of CO2 and 57.7mpg, the kind of numbers that appeal to your wallet rather than your heart. Part of the reason for the improvement is some clever techy stuff in the shape of a revised cooling system and a bigger EGR valve, but what makes greater sense to you and me is the stop-start system that cuts the engine out when not needed. If you’ve not experienced stop-start before it might feel a bit weird, but once you trust that the engine will start again the instant you release the brake pedal it becomes second nature. It all helps eke out a few more miles per gallon, and it’s clever in other ways too – pull up and put the transmission in Park and it goes into stop mode, but release your seat belt and it knows you’re home and switches off completely.




up from between the seats. The gearbox is also a new addition, with eight forward ratios. That might seem like an awful lot, but out on the motorway the engine is barely above tickover at the legal limit, keeping noise levels down and fuel economy up. Despite appearing focussed on economy, the XF still offers a driving experience that’s a cut above the norm. Whether the speed is high or low it remains poised, filtering out bumps so you’re aware of them, but no discomfort is caused. Yet the flip side of this is that when you start to press on, the XF is every inch the sports saloon, gripping strongly and staying level and controlled through corners. But the XF is a car you’d be happy to live with on a daily basis too. The seats are supportive and comfortable, their heating will toast your behind if you leave them on full power, and the top-drawer audio system can make the worst traffic jams seem irrelevant. Once upon a time Jaguars were all about the cut and thrust and weren’t so easy to justify on a financial basis. But the 2.2 Diesel XF is as economical and easy to live with as a fairly humble family hatchback, yet gives you so much more in terms of comfort, style and driving pleasure. It’s hard not to be very impressed.


FROM £329 A MONTH* WITH 3 YEARS FREE SERVICING. ** If the price of the Jaguar XF Luxury range is a surprise, then the generous level of standard specification should also be a revelation: • Leather seats with full electric adjustment • 7" colour touchscreen navigation system and DVD player • Xenon headlamps with daytime running lights • 8-speed automatic transmission with SPORT mode and paddles We hope you’re glad that for once, it all simply doesn’t add up.






On the Road Price Finance Deposit Allowance



Customer Deposit







Total Amount of Credit Credit Facility Fee (included in final payment) Purchase Fee (included in final payment)





Final Payment



Total Amount Payable



Duration of Agreement

37 Months

37 Months

Representative APR

4.9% APR

4.9% APR



36 Monthly Payments

Interest Rate (Fixed)



HOW ALIVE ARE YOU? Official fuel consumption for the Jaguar XF range in mpg (l/100km): Urban from 16.7 (16.9) to 48.7 (5.8). Extra Urban from 32.8 (8.6) to 64.2 (4.4). from 24.4 (11.6) to 57.7 (4.9). CO2 emissions from 270 to 129 (g/km). The figures provided are as a result of official manufacturer’s tests in accordance with EU legislation. A vehicle’s actual fuel consumption may differ from that achieved in such tests and these figures are for comparative purposes only.

*Plus deposit and final payment. Finance is subject to status and only available to applicants aged 18 and over resident in Mainland UK and N.Ireland. Indemnities may be required. This finance offer is available from Black Horse Limited trading as Jaguar Financial Services, St William House, Tresillian Terrace, Cardiff, CF10 5BH. *This offer is available on new XF Saloon and Sportbrake models only (excluding all 163PS models apart from Luxury), registered between 1st January and 31st March 2014 at participating Dealers only. **This promotion applies to eligible Jaguar XF Saloon and Sportbrake cars registered between 1st January and 31st March 2014 at participating Jaguar dealers. Services must take place at participating Jaguar Authorised Repairers. The ‘free servicing certificate’ should be presented to the dealership at time of booking the vehicle in for a service in order to qualify. The promotion is only available at the point of registration of the vehicle in the customer’s name. Free servicing covers scheduled servicing and associated parts (oils, hydraulic fluids, seals, filters, elements and antifreeze) and labour for three years from the date of invoice up to a maximum of three services (3 years or 48,000 miles diesel / 45,000 miles petrol, whichever is sooner). Scheduled servicing intervals are detailed in the vehicle handbook. Excludes wear and tear items such as shock absorbers, exhaust systems, tyres, windscreens, windows, engines, transmissions, electronics, cost of fitting or repairing accessories and any form of accident damage and non-routine servicing work, parts or labour. The service package is not a warranty package. The free service promotion is only valid for the vehicle purchased.

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One glimpse of the captivating BMW 6 Series Gran Coupé will leave a lasting impression. Our first ever four-door coupé looks set to eclipse the competition and blends beauty with practicality. Lavishly appointed with a carefully considered high level of standard specification, including high definition BMW Professional Multimedia Navigation, this is a car that exceeds expectations. F r r i f r r vi i www.w






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Official fuel economy figures for the BMW 6 Series Gran Coupé Range: Urban 22.8–41.5mpg (12.4–6.8l/100km). Extra Urban 40.9–57.6mpg (6.9–4.9l/100km). Combined 31.7–50.4mpg (8.9–5.6l/100km). CO2 emissions 206–148g/km. Figures may vary depending on driving style and conditions. BMW EfficientDynamics reduces BMW emissions without compromising performance developments and is standard across the model range. * Test drive subject to applicant status and availability.


Style and substance 7 seater

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Rexton W




available from

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Selectable 4 x 4 with low range


2.0 litre e-XDi200 diesel engine

2 tonne towing capability

LYNXName Garage Dealer Sea King Address lineRoad 1 Yeovil, Somerset BA20 2NZ Address line 2 Address line 3 01935 472001 or 07968 310261 01234 5678910 Fuel consumption figures in mpg (1/100km) Rexton W: Urban 28.4 (9.9) - 30.0 (9.4), Extra Urban 42.2 (6.7) – 44.8 (6.3), Combined 36.2 (7.8) – 38.2 (7.4). CO2 emissions in g/km: 206-196. Korando: Urban 29.5 (9.6) – 37.7 (7.5), Extra Urban 44.9 (6.3) – 55.4 (5.1), Combined 37.7 (7.5) – 47.1 (6.0). CO2 emissions in g/km: 199-147. Models featured are a Rexton 2.0 EX at £24,995 and a Korando ELX4 at £20,495, both including optional metallic paint priced at £500. *Rexton 2.0 SX including VAT, delivery

charge, Road Fund License & first registration charge. **Korando SE including VAT, delivery charge, Road Fund License & first registration charge.

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Cryptic clues Across 1. A man’s viewing-aid (4) 8. Getting thrown out for taking drinks here (5,5) 9. Somehow estrange the military man (8) 10. Care about the competition (4) 12. It’s not important to have a three-way translation (6) 14. Transfer the cornerman (6) 15. Disfigure 500 from east badly (6) 17. Like groups of valuable things (6) 18. Eye complaint among the worst yet (4) 19. A rider who ran homes oddly (8) 21. Consider it the outcome of tact (10) 22. Some fantastic wine (4) Down 2. Affectionate uttering of a tender name, perhaps (10) 3. Feeling comfortable with firearms around (4) 4. A drama involves the fleet (6) 5. He cuts up the slides (6) 6. Loudly criticises the accommodation of soldiers (8) 7. Lies about the eyot (4) 11. Cannot stir, maybe due to inhibition (10) 13. Noel is caught up in criminal activities with the force (8) 16. A composer from Harlem? (6) 17. Quick to react when a road is built next to it (6) 18. Dies sadly for the team (4) 20. Dean’s going out with her (4)




Quick clues Across 1. Applaud (4) 8. Destroy (10) 9. Client (8) 10. Wary (4) 12. Avaricious (6) 14. Cowardly (6) 15. Instigate (6) 17. Locating (6) 18. Observe (4) 19. Changing (8) 21. Unprotected (10) 22. Trial (4)

Down 2. Mournful (10) 3. Harbour (4) 4. Awkward (6) 5. Robust (6) 6. Arm ornament (8) 7. Tax (4) 11. Unfounded (10) 13. All (8) 16. Inn (6) 17. Writer (6) 18. Jealousy (4) 20. Aid (4)

Solutions to last month’s crossword: Cryptic solutions Across: 1 Copal; 4 Recipes; 8 Overall; 9 Scion; 10 Eyes; 11 Hesitate; 13 Ruth; 14 Tree; 16 Remained; 17 Apes; 20 Ennui; 21 Charade; 22 Sledges; 23 Heels. Down: 1 Close quarters; 2 Piece; 3 Loaf; 4 Roller; 5 Cashiers; 6 Private; 7 Senselessness; 12 Striking; 13 Romance; 15 Fences; 18 Plane; 19 Oath. Quick solutions Across: 1 Cheat; 4 Archaic; 8 Niggard; 9 Paper; 10 Earn; 11 In action; 13 Deny; 14 Stay; 16 Airfield; 17 Drag; 20 Image; 21 Bivouac; 22 Natural; 23 Dwell. Down: 1 Contemplation; 2 Eager; 3 Tear; 4 Ardent; 5 Capacity; 6 Amplify; 7 Chronological; 12 Engineer; 13 Dormant; 15 Global; 18 Rouse; 19 Avid.

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The County Magazine | March 2014