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Rutland Covering Rutland, Market Harborough and the surrounding area


June 2018 ÂŁ1.50

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Showtime! L O C A L A R T, N E V I L L H O LT, B E E K E E P I N G & M O R E





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Contents June 2018



40 Health & Beauty: Toe-tally Fabulous Feet! 42 Healthy Teeth, Ditchfield Dental Practice


26 Outdoor Living 32 Blurring the Boundaries at Stonecrop House, Wing (National Garden Scheme) Cover images this month: RL: Rutland County Show image by Andy Balmford. This year’s Rutland County Show is on Sunday 3 June. See p58 for more details. MHL: Image of Nic Fiddian Green’s Horse at Water in the gardens of Nevill Holt estate with the Welland Vale beyond, by SMD Photography, courtesy of Nevill Holt Opera. Editor Clare Peel Advertisement Manager, Rutland and Market Harborough Tracy Watkinson 01572 813187 Advertising Copy and Subscriptions Rachel Beecroft 01780 765320 Head of Design Steven Handley Designers Sarah Patterson, Calum Handley, Chris Strickland Publisher Nicholas Rudd-Jones 01780 765571 Printed by Warners of Bourne Subscriptions: annual rate £25 (UK only). Please write to the Publisher at Local Living Ltd, PO Box 208, Stamford PE9 9FY, with a cheque payable to Local Living, or go online to


18 Food News & Reviews: Barnsdale Lodge; The Langton Arms 20 The Olive Branch: Perfect Summer Pudding! 22 Life Should Be As Sweet as Honey


Burghley Sculpture Garden Art in Rutland Nevill Holt Opera Little Living Try a Triathlon! Out & About



10 Rutland Hero: Fundraiser Lorna Grey 35 Visit Kibworth 62 Hambleton’s History


4 Editor’s Page 50 Newton Fallowell, Home Straight, Topset Jewellery, Healthy Hearing 52 UPP Property, The Rug Studio, Edith Weston Academy, 5 Day Blinds 54 Anand Shoes, Farndon Fields Summer Shopping Weekend, Garolla Roller Shutter Doors, Oakham Swim School

Box office 01780 756133 For 10% off ticket price use code TOLERUTLIVJU when booking RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH LIVING JUNE 2018




June’s a fabulously busy month in the region, with a host of events and activities including the Rutland County Show taking place. It’s the month for Rutland Open Studios, which we’ve got covered on pages 12–13, and for Nevill Holt Opera’s annual festival – extra special this year since it involves the unveiling of a brand-new theatre (a superb addition to the region). The National Garden Scheme continues, and we feature a beautiful Rutland property in Wing that will be open to visitors on 17 June. Speaking of that Sunday, it’s Father’s Day, and we have a few ideas for you below (hopefully reassuring my own dad that I haven’t forgotten). And if the warmer weather is encouraging you to focus on health and fitness, we discover more about local triathlons on pages 45 and 46. Lots of fantastic things to keep us all busy! Have a great month and enjoy what the region has to offer!


@rutlandliving @rutlandlivingmag

Editor’s selection

Some ideas for Father’s Day, Sunday 17 June


with your dad at the cinema. Options for Sunday 17 June include a 5pm showing of “Solo: A Star Wars Story” at Melton’s boutique Regal Cinema, and John Hurt’s final film “That Good Night” (at 5pm) and Ian McEwan’s On Chesil Beach (7pm) at Stamford Arts Centre.,


something with your dad on Father’s Day! Perhaps he’d like this impressive hardback by Philip Parker (£25), available at Walkers Bookshops in Oakham or Stamford or The Bookshop Kibworth. At Walkers you can buy a card and giftwrap at the same time – Father’s Day sorted!,


your father to the Gentleman’s Afternoon Tea (£17.95 per person) at Barnsdale Lodge. A cool take on the quintessential English tradition, this one involves steak slider sandwiches, mini pork pies, black pudding sausage rolls, Guinness chocolate mousse and a bottle of Grainstore beer. Just make sure dad has a rest from chauffeuring duties for a change!




PHOTO: CANAL & RIVER TRUST Foxton Locks, where Sunday 17 June is the second day of the Foxton Locks Festival. It’s on from 10am to 6pm and is £8 per adult (free for accompanied children).


time out together at Rutland Water. There’s plenty to suit fathers of all ages and interests, from trips on the Rutland Belle (sailings at noon, 1pm, 2pm and 3pm on Sundays in June; adults £9.50, children £6.50, family ticket for 2 adults and 2 children £28) to hiring bikes from Rutland Cycling to a blast on the Aqua Park (from £20, although offers are often available), which is open from 26 May. rutlandwatercruises. com,,


on some stylish grooming products. Cavells stocks these funkylooking razors (price varies according to model – from around £70), by Uppingham firm Bolin Webb. And if that’s above the budget, Cavells also sells a great range of accessories by upmarket brands such as Paul Smith (socks, shown right, £17 a pair).

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OTHERW Exhibition of the month OTHERWORLDLY Michael Shaw, Curator of Burghley Sculpture Garden’s 2018 exhibition, reviews the show.

“Otherworldly” features sculpture that explores elsewhere: the microscopic, the cosmic and the interplanetary. Constructors of spaceships, planets and satellites have been parking their creations for the duration of this year’s exhibition at Burghley Sculpture Garden. The exhibition spans our world and the known existence, exploring the geological, the celestial, and the extraterrestrial. “Begin at the beginning”, exhorted the King in Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, and so we shall, with the smaller of earthly details: a tiny thing that sustains the explosion of life on the earth’s land… pollen. Wrought in steel by Joanne Risley, Pollen Bomb is a spiked rendering reminiscent of mines. Natural forms also play a part in Dallas Collins’ Leaf Pylon, topped with two conical speakers that listen to the trees, to nature and the cosmic background radiation still emanating from the Big Bang. Many of the sculptures on show are vehicular. Andy Hazell’s Interplanetary Taxi is a prime example of this, seeming to have landed in the epicentre of the garden’s elliptical amphitheatre prior to its next cosmic trip. Inside is an orrery to guide the captain around the universe, and the sculpture is fully driveable, adept at negotiating the narrowest of cosmic alleyways thanks to the Japanese kei-car regulations that stipulate a maximum width of 1.48m . If Star Wars sculpture is your thing, then best call Stamford’s very own engineering and YouTube genius, Colin Furze. On this occasion, our intrepid tie-wearing inventor has created a “life-size” TIE Silencer, Kylo Ren’s choice of interstellar getabout. Some 17m long, the agile space warrior has hovered to ground to create a menacing scorpionlike presence from the Dark Side. Furze’s creation is the ultimate Star Wars merchandise, without the reduction of scale required by most toys. Whilst Furze channels Star Wars, Jim Unsworth appears to be on team Tolkien. The Delights of Eden is an architectural house of a sculpture straight from the land of fairy tales, elves and pixies, and bedecked with Gandalf’s pointed hat. The sculpture grows tree-like, bending and lilting with the charm of an illustrator’s whim. We have the Man in the Moon, too – at Burghley he is charging up the ladder to get to work in The Moon Polisher by Pete Rogers. This somewhat cheeky sculpture also features a group of impertinent mice at its rear, eating the cheese from which the moon, naturally, is made! One sculpture bridging worlds large and small is Ben Rowe’s Lost in Time and Space: Beacon 52.64 – 0.44. This intriguing wooden structure is reminiscent of satellites, models of chemical compounds, viruses and even jumping jacks. His starburst of a sculpture is a beacon that marks a point in time and space – in this case, the latitude and longitude of its Burghley residence. The Sculpture Garden at Burghley House is open daily 11am-5pm until Sunday 28 October 2018. For more details, see 6


Andy Hazell, Interplanetary Taxi

Ben Rowe, Lost in Time and Space: Beacon 52.64 – 0.44

Joanne Risley, Pollen Bomb

WORLDLY Colin Furze, TIE Silencer

Pete Rogers, The Moon Polisher (also below)

Jim Unsworth, The Delights of Eden





BIG Summer Sale!

Starts Thursday 14 June at 9.30am 27 & 17a Mill Street

Fabric Furniture Lighting Cushions Lifestyle accessories 10% off all orders of fabric, wallpaper, trimmings and floor coverings 27 & 17a Mill Street Oakham Rutland LE15 6EA 01572 722 345


Rutland resident Lorna Grey volunteers for the Make A Wish Foundation and has helped raise around £40,000 for the charity. She told Amander Meade about her role and the special trips she makes to Florida.



Fundraiser, Lorna Grey


Why did you decide to become involved with Make A Wish (MAW)? Fourteen years ago I suffered a brain haemorrhage and took almost a year to recover. During my recovery I became a volunteer at the Make a Wish office, where I became more and more interested in their work. Our own daughter was born with a congenital heart defect and was given only a small chance of survival – she is happily now in her forties and a mum herself. I hoped that my own experience would help me to empathise with families in an intolerable situation. What’s your MAW role now? The charity aims to provide “One True Wish” for young people between 3 and 17 years of age with critical illnesses. I trained to become a Wish Visitor and now meet youngsters across the region to talk about their wish and how we can best accommodate them. What kinds of things are wished for? Surprisingly the majority are not requests for expensive holidays or experiences. Recent 10

wishes granted have been to have a bedroom makeover, a new climbing frame and even a new pair of trainers. Some are more elaborate, for example the young man who wanted to meet a WWII Spitfire pilot, which we managed to arrange for him as well as other goodies such as a signed picture from the Red Arrows. It’s my job to provide the charity with a report on what the range of possibilities might be for each individual request. Tell us about your recurring trips to volunteer in the USA. Give Kids The World Village is a non-profit resort in Kissimmee, Florida, for children with life-threatening illnesses and their families. The resort’s focus is providing accommodation and access to donated theme park tickets as well as providing a safe environment for families to spend some time together. Make A Wish and many other organisations send families there from all over the world. I read a blog by another MAW volunteer who had visited and decided I would make the trip myself. I clocked up over 72 hours of volunteering during that first visit


and I have repeated the trip annually ever since. Volunteers perform all kinds of tasks around the village as well as serving breakfasts and lunches and much more besides. The Village is entirely funded through donations – even down to the toilet rolls. There are volunteers of all ages from teens to those in their nineties. I always have a wonderful time and have met some incredible young people and their families. For the last few years my husband Allan has joined me at the Village; we funded our own costs, of course, but the value of what we brought home with us from the experience was priceless. People sometimes tell me that being around very sick children would upset them too much, but through all the work I have done for Make A Wish I have found that the focus is never on “poorly” children, only happy children making memories. To find out more about volunteering for or fundraising on behalf of either charity, contact Lorna on 01572 755863 or email her at Lorna also gives talks about her experiences in exchange for a donation to Make A Wish.



in Rutland This month sees the welcome return of the annual Open Studios event in Rutland. Amander Meade investigates the work on display, while Clare Peel looks at some of the county’s artists and galleries.

Rutland Open Studios 2018

Looking across the Water by Louise Chatfield

Each summer a group of committed volunteers works hard to organise and publicise the Rutland Open Studios event. This year they are hoping for record numbers of visitors to back the initiative and take the opportunity to see the wonderful array of artistic talent in the county. Artist Louise Chatfield explains more to Amander Meade. What is the idea behind the project? Open Studios in Rutland was the idea of artists Mo Gardner and Roy Holley many years ago. The scheme was set up in order for artists and makers in Rutland to share their work with visitors and to showcase the array of artistic talent in the county. So what will be happening this year? During weekends throughout June all the participating artists invite the public to visit our workshops and studios. This provides an opportunity for visitors to see our work and find out about the techniques we use and the passions that inspire us. There are all kinds of media to see including paintings, printmaking, pottery and ceramics, sculpture, textiles, glass, jewellery, découpage and photography. What kind of format do the Open Studios follow? Exhibitions are in studios, own homes, galleries, community halls, etc. Some have just one artist represented, while others have several getting together to show their works. It is all totally informal with artists and makers equally pleased to chat or to leave people to look around. Is there an expectation to buy a piece of work if you visit an Open Studio? Definitely not, but it’s a great way to start a collection or buy an interesting piece directly from the artist. Of course, artists and makers are pleased to sell a piece, but it is absolutely not expected, and we appreciate visitors taking the time to visit. Often there are greetings cards and small items for sale too. What would you say to readers who have never been but are considering taking part this year? Please support our Rutland artists and makers who work so hard and would love to share their work with you. Where can readers find out more information? All information, including a full list of the artists exhibiting, where their studios are based and when they’ll be open, is on the Rutland Open Studios website, as well as in our brochures, on social media, in the local press and on county information websites. Most studios will display signs and bunting outside too. Additionally, Rutland County Museum is hosting an exhibition with work by local artists between 23 May and 16 June.



A Rutland Landscape by Alan Oliver


LAN Oliver, one of the region’s most esteemed artists, will be showing a collection of his work for Rutland Open Studios 2018. His inspiration comes mostly from the beautiful landscapes of Rutland. “I am never happier than when I am walking through the countryside with a sketchbook and pencil eager to spot an idea for a painting.” Alan also always has a selection of paintings available through Oakham’s Old House Gallery on the Market Place, run by fellow artist – potter Richard Clarke. “He captures,” the gallery explains, “the very essence of Rutland, the way the sunlight dances across the local stone work, the wealth of character concealed in a hidden valley’s forgotten building, a wild blaze of bright poppies making a summer landscape look surreal.” For more details, see or visit Old House Gallery, 13 Market Place, Oakham LE15, 01572 755538,


ASED in Oakham, artist Sue Bagshaw specialises in acrylic, watercolour and pencil portraits of people and animals. One of her main motivations in her commissions is to design the perfect finished product for her sitter – “something unique and beautiful that they will treasure for many years to come”. Sue also runs art classes and workshops at her studio in Oakham. These include her “Paint & Prosecco” evenings, which offer a very relaxed opportunity for those attending to create their own masterpieces. Materials, refreshments and step-by-tuition are including in the £20 fee (booking is essential). For more details, contact Sue on 07801 063008 or visit

Rebecca Lardner at Trent Galleries (Oakham)

GALLERY NEWS Trent Galleries Still Life with Roses by Gillian Durno, available at the Robert Fogell Gallery


ETTON-based artist Gillian Durno, who is exhibiting during Rutland Open Studios, specialises in contemporary floral, still life and impressionistic landscape paintings in acrylic, mixed media, collage and pastel, with texture an important aspect of much of her work. She is a keen gardener and gains inspiration from her beautiful cottage garden in rural Rutland, describing her paintings as “a celebration of my interest in still life, flowers, landscape and texture”. She sells through the Robert Fogell Gallery in Stamford, as well as through Cambridge Contemporary Art and through Duncan Miller in London. For more details, visit, www. or Robert Fogell Gallery, 23 High Street, St Martins, Stamford PE9 2LF, 01780 762099,

Goldmark Gallery A family business, Goldmark has been selling art from its gallery in Uppingham for over 40 years and specialises in 20th-century and contemporary art and ceramics, as well as making films, publishing books and offering a framing service. There are more than 40,000 items in their incredible collection, by artists including William Blake, Paul Cézanne, Marc Chagall, Jacob Epstein (bust, below), Lucien Freud, LS Lowry, Eduardo Paolozzi, Pablo Picasso, John Piper, Eric Ravilious, Rembrandt and Andy Warhol, among many, many others. The gallery also represents over 20 living artists and artists’ estates, including John Farrington, Rigby Graham, Jenny Grevatte, George Large, Christopher P Wood and Olive Wootton. The ceramics offering is phenomenal, with work sold by potters including Nic Collins, Shinsaku Hamada, Lee Kang-hyo, Walter Keeler, Ken Matsuzaki and Phil Rogers, a Welsh studio potter whose set of 80 exquisite guinomi (sake cups) with various glazes can be seen right. In addition to the ceramics on show at the main gallery, there is more studio pottery for sale in Goldmark Pots, just next door. The gallery, which has gained a name for itself across the country and beyond, hosts a number of key shows a year – these are staged alongside the main offering. In 2018 a major exhibition of etchings by Augustus John, showcasing more than 100 works, is being held. The atmosphere is welcoming and unpretentious, and the knowledgeable staff – who have access to a reference library of more than 5,000 art books – are exceptionally helpful. Don’t be shy – go in and take a look! You’ll be impressed. Visit Goldmark Gallery at 14 Orange Street, Uppingham LE15 9SQ and find out more on 01572 821424 or at

Oakham’s Mill Street is the focus for a number of galleries, including a branch of Trent Galleries, which showcases a diverse collection of original paintings, collectable limited editions and stunning sculpture by some of the UK’s most highly respected and collectable artists. They are proud to be welcoming leading contemporary seascape artist Rebecca Lardner on Saturday 23 June, between 2-4pm. She will be in the gallery celebrating the launch of a superb collection of her uplifting original paintings, limitededition prints and sculpture. Rebecca’s talent lies in her ability to create engaging and animated harbour scenes that encapsulate everything that is most charming about British coastal life. The lively impression of ceaseless everyday activity has led art critics to acclaim her as “the modern-day Lowry”. For more information, visit Trent Galleries, 11 Mill Street, Oakham LE15 6EA or contact them on 01572 722790. See also

A Bigger Gallery

This welcome addition to Oakham’s cultural scene focusses exclusively on the work of David Hockney (b.1937), one of the most influential 20th-century British artists, now in his 80s. The collection, which has been curated over the last decade by a specialist on the artist, consists of Hockney originals, limited-edition prints, original signed posters and books including the Taschen Hockney Sumo Collector’s and Art Edition. 17a Mill Street, Oakham LE15 6EA, 07792 148940,

Made Gallery Based in Uppingham, Made is a small, independent gallery that sells beautiful, handmade jewellery, ceramics, leather goods, glassware, art, textiles and cards. It was established by Julia Groundsell in 2007 with the aim of providing an outlet for unique handmade jewellery and gifts and it aims to source and platform work from makers across Britain as well as offering an in-house design service. There is currently work by around 70 artists on show, with the range regularly updated and new exhibitions every quarter. Julia also offers a jewellery design and commission service. To see more, visit 14a Orange Street, Uppingham LE15 9SQ or contact the gallery on 01572 822002, RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH LIVING JUNE 2018



Custom made to compliment your outfit or choose from a range of ready to wear pieces. Opening Times: Mon, Tue, Thurs, Sat 9-12.30. Appointments can be made for alternative days and times. To book an appointment please contact us on 01572 490432. 23b Suite 9, Oakham Enterprise Park Ashwell Road, Oakham LE15 7TU

Alan Oliver - Artist Open Studio

‘Post Office Lane, Lyndon’

At my studio 10 Stamford Road, Oakham, LE15 6JA It will be open on Sat. 9th and 10th and from Wed. 13th to 17th June from 10am to 5pm daily Tel: 01572 756845 Email: 14


Marc Quinn’s The Origin of the World (Cassis Madagascariensis) Indian Ocean and Nevill Holt Hall

Nevill Holt Opera High on a hill between Rutland and Market Harborough is the beautiful hamlet of Nevill Holt, on the map thanks to Carphone Warehouse co-founder and local champion of the Arts and education David Ross. Twelve years spent restoring the magnificent Grade I-listed Nevill Holt estate culminate in June with the opening of a stunning new purpose-built opera house. Clare Peel went to talk to Rosenna East, Nevill Holt Opera’s General Manager, to find out more about David Ross’s vision, the new opera house and the 2018 season.


COULDN’T have been more fortunate for my trip to Nevill Holt – it was one of the first brilliantly sunny days in April, and the house, parts of which date back to the 13th century, and the surrounding gardens looked glorious. We started with a tour of the gardens, which are designed by Rupert Golby and tended by Head Gardener Andy and his team, whose careful planning means that they are at their peak for the opera season. The gardens are a showcase for a jaw-dropping collection of contemporary British art and sculpture, including works by Antony Gormley, Allen Jones, Marc Quinn, Nic Fiddian Green, Conrad Shawcross and Sean Henry. Rosenna Rosenna East, General Manager at pointed out relatively new acquisitions: Nevill Holt Opera Shawcross’s organic “Manifold 2 (9:8)”, creating spiralling bronze soundwaves in the charming Kitchen Garden, and, on the Cedar Lawn, British Pop Artist Jones’ monumental, scarlet “Dancers” (2014). Another highlight is Fiddian Green’s iconic head of a horse, located high on the edge of an escarpment, beyond which are breathtaking views over the Welland Valley towards Rockingham Castle.


Nic Fiddian Green, Horse at Water



Antony Gormley, Another Time

Allen Jones’ Dancers

Core vision and outreach David Ross’s core vision, which is central to all of the projects he supports and funds, is threefold, Rosenna told me. He is committed to the Arts, to the region and to his academic federation, the David Ross Education Trust (DRET), which now embraces 35 academies. Nevill Holt Opera (NHO), which was founded in 2013, combines all those things – it was established with a clear mission to enrich lives and to empower young people through music and the Arts. A schools programme, free schools performances and a young artists programme are all part of this. In July 2017 NHO staged four performances of Benjamin Britten’s “Noye’s Fludde” as a community project involving more than 1,000 children. It won “Best Event” in the Leicestershire Tourism Awards that year and was praised for its “excellence, accessibility, impact and legacy”. Since 2013, over 10,000 people have attended performances at NHO and, notably, in 2017 some 85 per cent of the audience came from the East Midlands area, with 51 per cent being new to NHO. With the development this year and the new opera house set to be a huge asset for the area, things will undoubtedly go from strength to strength. It’s incredibly exciting to watch NHO grow – the result of many years’ work in progress and the dedication and passion of all involved.

New opera house

Construction on the new 400-seat theatre started in 2016 – the previous one, although of equal capacity, was a temporary structure, so extensive enabling work was necessary initially. The design, by Sterling Prize-winning architects Witherford Watson Mann, with technical assistance from theatre design experts Sound Space Vision, is for an intimate opera house with Enjoying the gardens a boutique feel. The architects have drawn inspiration from the colour palette of the main buildings at Nevill Holt, intending to “harmonize” (as Rosenna so appropriately put it) historic elements with modern comfort and facilities and excellent acoustics. Building is scheduled to be finished around the end of May, with rehearsals starting in early June.

The 2018 season

The unveiling of the new theatre takes place when the 2018 season opens with “Le nozze di Figaro” (The Marriage of Figaro). Rosenna said, “We are very proud to announce that Leicestershire-born baritone James Newby stars in the role of Count Almaviva this summer. A star on the rise, Newby

Conrad Shawcross, Manifold 2 (9:8)

grew up in Leicester, and this year won the prestigious Glyndebourne John Christie award for most-talented young singer of 2017.” Speaking of the announcement, James said, “It’s not often you get to debut a major role, and it’s definitely not often you get to open a new opera house. To do both in your home county is an absolute privilege, and I am so excited and proud to be joining Nevill Holt Opera for the summer!” Following five performances of Mozart’s Figaro, there’ll be two of “Powder Her Face”, a stylish, saucy comic opera written in 1995 by Thomas Adès, one of the UK’s most celebrated young composers. This production from designer/director Antony McDonald received great acclaim from critics last year when it was staged by Northern Ireland Opera, including five-star reviews from The Times and The Telegraph. It’s a bold, exciting choice. And in case the new theatre, the music and the setting are not enough, to enhance the experience further, each performance has an interval of 90 minutes, so that audience members can dine in the gardens while enjoying the glorious views of the Welland Valley. It all sounds truly idyllic and without doubt one of the highlights of our local cultural calendar. NHO’s 2018 season runs from 14 to 30 June with Le Nozze di Figaro and Powder Her Face. At time of printing, limited returns only were available. More details on 020 7534 1563/ Nevill Holt Hall, Nr Market Harborough, Leicestershire LE16 8EG. RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH LIVING JUNE 2018


The lowdown on two great local places to eat

Food News & Reviews

Barnsdale Lodge Hotel Fabulous food coupled with delightful surroundings – Amander Meade visits Barnsdale Lodge Hotel for lunch. Photography by Adam Balcomb at AB Digital UK.


ARNSDALE Lodge has an impeccable and well-deserved reputation locally for its excellent execution of large-scale special events, weddings and fine dining – defining moments in life. While this is true, increasingly I am drawn there for equally important but less high-profile occasions. Recently I have visited the Lodge for coffee with friends, informal meetings and early evening weekend drinks in the sunshine, and I can think of nowhere else that makes these ordinary outings feel quite as special. On this occasion I met my colleague, Tracy, for lunch and a catch up in the light and elegant conservatory dining room. The welcome was warm and the service prompt and unobtrusive; nothing is too much trouble for the very obliging restaurant team. Executive Head Chef David Bukowicki has been at the helm in the kitchen for two years now and has created a selection of dishes to suit every palate and appetite. The menu includes a selection of light dishes – imaginatively created and ideal either as a starter or a stand-alone light bite. Hot and cold sandwiches are very reasonably priced with a chargrilled ribeye steak sandwich with Gruyère, red onion jam and French mustard, on a malted bloomer with skinny fries for

under £10. On this occasion we chose from the range of Barnsdale Classics; I opted for Somerset brie, sun-blushed tomato, chargrilled courgette Wellington with Mediterranean vegetables in a pesto dressing (£14.95). Tracy chose the pan-fried fillet of stone bass chorizo mash potato, salt and pepper squid, marinated artichoke and anchovies (£18.95). Both dishes were beautifully presented, fresh and delicious. Bukowicki uses local produce wherever possible, and all-important details such as freshly baked bread and olive tapenade are all created in house. Vegetables are grown in the

kitchen garden, and the hotel’s rare breed hens and ducks provide the freshest of eggs. With a friendly bar, cosy lounge, lovely bright conservatory, private dining rooms available for parties from 2 to 200, easy parking and a glorious courtyard garden, Barnsdale Lodge is a gorgeous venue to visit for any number of reasons – don’t save it for special occasions. Barnsdale Lodge Hotel and Restaurant, Exton Lane, Oakham LE15 8AH. Open daily for breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner. To reserve or for more details, call 01572 724678 or visit

which had a lovely convivial atmosphere when I visited, has an open kitchen. There is also a garden room with additional seating ideal for a private function. An outside terrace courtyard is a lovely spot for a drink – with blankets provided for those chilly evenings. My Scottish salmon fishcakes were beautifully presented and came with chunky tartare sauce, pickled radish and a cucumber salad to refresh the palate. The “Season’s Best” main course (their best meat and vegetables)

was a 20oz porterhouse steak, served with either salad or vegetables. The steak cut like butter and melted in the mouth and had a smoky flavour from the use of a Big Green Egg BBQ. Dessert was a heavenly banana, ice cream and peanut sundae. Just one thing to note: book well in advance to avoid disappointment! The Langton Arms, Main Street, Church Langton, Market Harborough, LE16 7SY, 01858 545396,

The Langton Arms Kirstie Mitchell reviews the newly opened pub, The Langton Arms, in the village of Church Langton.


HE Little Britain Pub Company knows a gem when it sees one. The group’s “new baby” is The Langton Arms, located in the quaint village of Church Langton; after being closed for two years, the previous building has been fully renovated, creating a wonderful country pub, full of charm and character. The company already has four established village pubs in Leicestershire, and its philosophy of “real food… real drinks… proper pubs” is clearly a successful formula. The interior decor is of high quality with a mix of fantastic, eclectic furnishings. The main bar attracts a faithful local clientele, creating a real sense of community. There is a separate intimate seating area with cosy armchairs and a log fire. The light, spacious restaurant,




For Those Special Occasions



The Olive Branch team are in summery mood with a delicious dessert recipe!

The perfect summer pudding! T

HIS month’s recipe is one we showed to guests at a recent Olive Branch cookery demonstration. It’s a lovely June pudding, and, when we served it during lunch after the demo, it disappeared rather quickly! The raspberry sherbet clotted cream gives an extra zip that really gets your taste buds dancing. We serve a pudding wine – Elysium Black Muscat from California – that goes very nicely with this dessert thanks to the Muscat’s berry, lychee and rose petal flavours. Talking of summer berries, we often get ours from Rutland Water Fruit Farm, which sits between Manton and Edith Weston on the south shore of Rutland Water. The fruit grown here is always delicious! For this recipe you can either freeze locally grown fruit or use ready-frozen berries from the supermarket.

Summer pudding with raspberry sherbet clotted cream Serves 4 Summer pudding • 500g frozen mixed fresh summer berries • 250ml water • 200g caster sugar • Gelatin leaves • 1 split vanilla pod • Juice of 1 lemon • 3 slices medium white sliced bread with the crusts removed 1. Defrost the berries and strain off the liquid. 2. Add the water and sugar to the berry liquid. Now measure the liquid. You will need four gelatin leaves per 500ml. Soften the required number of gelatin leaves in cold water. 3. Bring the liquid and vanilla pod to a simmer. Then add your softened gelatin and remove from the heat.

Now being served at The Olive Branch It’s back! Throughout June we’re serving Tapas on the Terrace, priced at £25 per person. When the weather is kind, The Olive Branch garden terrace is the perfect place to enjoy our delicious selection of small dishes, such as chilled gazpacho, whitebait, padrón peppers, confit chorizo in cider, trout with French-style peas and potato croquettes. Tapas desserts include the likes of pannacotta, Eton mess, churros and egg custard tart. Our six-course Summer Set Gourmet Menu is also being served. Dishes include crispy cannelloni stuffed with paddock herb ricotta, heritage tomatoes



4. Add lemon juice. 5. Line a Dariole mould with double layer of cling film. 6. Place your bread in the warm liquid and leave to soak. 7. Arrange two slices of soaked bread in the Dariole mould, making sure you overlap them slightly, and press together. 8. Add your fruit in the middle, with just enough liquid to cover. 9. Place the last slice of bread on top and seal, then wrap the overhanging cling film around and press with another Dariole mould on top and chill. Raspberry sherbet clotted cream • 2 tbsp freeze-dried raspberries • 3 tbsp caster sugar • Pinch citric acid • 1tbsp clotted cream 1. Blitz the freeze-dried raspberries with the caster sugar and citric acid. 2. Quenelle (form an elegant spherical scoop) the clotted cream and coat it in the raspberry sherbet.

and tapenade caramel; fillet of chalk stream trout with brown shrimps, French-style peas and black garlic potato croquettes; and iced mango parfait with confit chilli and lime and coconut tuile. Book on 01780 410355. More details at

Country Inn and Restaurant A warm welcome is assured at our quintessential old English county pub, bringing you the best of British home cooked meals and a choice of well kept Real Ales.

Fresh New Look Lunch Menu Tuesday – Saturday 12-2pm Enjoy a warm welcome and fine food all served with a smile in our award-winning restaurant. Great for a treat, a business lunch or a quick bite to eat.

Why not join us for Sunday Lunch? Choice of 3 roasts all served with the traditional trimmings £9.95 for one course up to £15.95 for three courses

Curry Night

1st Thursday of every month. Two course menu with selection of starters, followed by three homemade curries £10.95 a head

Our mouth-watering delights include: Buffalo mozzarella salad, salted black beans, chilli tomatoes, spring onions, wonton crisps. Slow roast pork belly, black pudding, apple and sage rosti, mustard creamed cabbage. Steamed cod, asparagus, peas, gnocchi, gammon and parsley broth. Iced honey and almond nougat parfait, rhubarb, stem ginger doughnuts.

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The No.1 Hotel & Restaurant in Uppingham on Trip Advisor You can book your table online at and see all our menus. High Street East, Uppingham, Rutland LE15 9PZ T: 01572 822951 E:

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Life should be as sweet as honey...


BEES FOR BUSINESS Jez and Caroline Rose moved

to a small, dilapidated farm on the outskirts of Langtoft, just over 18 months ago. Having been based outside Milton Keynes, they had worked in the corporate rat race for over 13 years, and were looking for an excuse to “slow down”. They have since set up their company, Bees for Business, creating an environmental haven for bees – offering an “Adopt a Hive” opportunity, alongside hosting workshops and selling their bee products through an online shop. Jez said, ”we decided to combine our corporate experience with our fascination of bees, and Bees for Business was born.” Local advocates already include The Burghley Estate, awardwinning Peterborough restaurant Prévost, and homewares designer Sophie Allport, who have all adopted hives. It would appear Bees for Business has created a cost-effective and original way to own bees, with none of the sting! At present, the company runs 55 hives in the local area, producing about 10,000kg of honey per year, and hopes to place a further 250 hives in the next five years. Bees for Business uses the Buckfast strain of bee (known for their calm and docile nature), importing them from a small island off Denmark. Jez says, “they are a clean strain of bee without disease, and have a great temperament.” Swarming can sometimes be a problem, but Jez continues, ”we do not clip the queen’s wings, as I do not see our role as omnipotent controllers of the bees, simply guardians. We support the natural behaviour of our honeybees by regularly maintaining and



Do we actually understand the hugely important role that the honeybee plays in our environment? To quote Albert Einstein, “if the bee disappeared off the surface of the globe, then man would only have four years of life left. No more bees, no pollination, no plants, no animals, no more man. If honeybees ceased to exist today, about one third of all foods we eat would disappear.”


Up until the mid-1900s beekeeping was a specialist profession, and it was estimated there were as many as 1 million beehives across the country; by 2015 this number had plummeted to just 270,000. In 2018 the main custodians of bees in the UK appear to be hobby beekeepers, running one or two hives to provide honey for the family, to sell at their garden gate, or into a local village shop. Deborah Pennell delights in meeting several local beekeepers, whose apiaries offer honey to the local community, and, in one case, whose business gives us all a chance to reap the rich rewards of bee ownership.

monitoring the hives, and trying to remain one step ahead of them. By providing them with what they need, we hope they remain content, and do not feel the need to swarm. It’s a tricky balance.” The Bees for Business concept Their aims: • to actively reverse the decline of the honeybee in Britain • to carry out ethical beekeeping; the queen’s wings are not clipped. • to provide innovative opportunities to support diversification in British farming • to encourage planting of organic, British beefriendly flowers to improve biodiversity and provide food sources for pollination, actively encouraging local land owners to sow seeds on unused patches of land, which not only enhances the environment visually, but creates more food areas for the bees • to encourage businesses to make a real difference to the environment. For information about the Bees for Business “Adopt a Hive” scheme, beekeeping courses and more, go to their website at


Julia Ratcliffe is 42 years

old and has recently embarked on her beekeeping career. How long have you owned bees? Having attended, and passed my basic beekeeping course with the Northamptonshire Beekeepers Association, I already own two hives – one modified national, as advised by the beekeeping society, and one controversial Flow Hive. I am awaiting my first swarm of bees. What attracted you to beekeeping? I have always been fascinated by bees – they appear so intelligent and well adapted. I read a novel entitled “The Bees” by Laline Paull, and it fuelled my desire to learn and discover more about them. I also love honey, and as a hayfever sufferer was recommended to eat honey from a local source, to help my allergy. Where are your hives based? In my garden - we have a small orchard with over 42 varieties of apple tree, and I am hoping we will benefit from the addition of over 60,000 pollinators and have a bumper apple crop this year, as well as lots of honey! Would you encourage others to own bees? Absolutely – it brings a huge sense of wellbeing; the honey provides a healthy alternative to sugar, and bees have a massive environmental impact. Are you not scared about being stung? People worry about being stung, but it is rare - only the queen can sting more than once, and she leaves the hive to be mated once in her lifetime! All the other bees will sting to protect the integrity of the hive, but die as a consequence, so whilst they will mount an attack upon a mouse or a hornet trying to access the hive, they will not go for humans, unless you are messing around with the hive without a smoker and the correct protective suit and gloves. How time consuming is keeping bees? It is a year-round commitment, but there are times when you have less to worry about.

Sonia Hudson

is in her fifth season of owning bees. Mentored by David Chapman, an old Oundelian who has about 15 hives and is a master at his craft, she lives in north Bedfordshire and sells David’s honey at St Neots farmers’ market. How many hives do you have? At present, I have one hive in Oundle, placed next to three adjoining hives belonging to Oundle School. I hope to have a hive in Polebrook at some stage, as I currently have three colonies of bees living in the stone walls of our house! What attracted you to beekeeping? I used to live in Oundle and worked in the school art gallery. Through my connections with the school I joined their beekeeping group, which is run as a voluntary activity on a Wednesday afternoon. Learning alongside the pupils I was allowed to introduce my own hive. Although I have now moved to the adjoining village of Polebrook, and have stopped working in the gallery, I continue to help with the school bees. Beekeeping is fascinating, the hives constantly change in their strengths and productivity – three is a good number for the school to own, since there is always one that is strong and one weaker. As beekeeping requires more vigilance and checks in the summer and at swarming time, it seems to work well having my support for David, if pupils and staff are away on half term and school holidays. How did the dreadful weather in the early part of this year affect the bees? Unfortunately, I lost my queen at the end of last summer, so I bought in a replacement from Buckfast Abbey. Sadly, she was not accepted, so I am due to acquire a new colony any day now. Where do you sell your honey? I make between 20 and 40 jars a year and give it away to family and friends. Personally, I prefer the late summer honey aided by Oundle’s many lime trees, which flower in early July.

Late April is usually when your hive could swarm, if you’re not super vigilant. May and June are when you would harvest the majority of your honey – St Swithin’s Day [15 July] usually marks the end of honey collecting, and around this time the queen will stop laying. During the year you must treat the bees a couple of times for Varroa mites (compulsory and necessary, sadly, since about 1992). Once the temperature falls below 10°C, the hive will cluster and eat its stores over winter. How well your bees survive, depends upon you as a beekeeper; maintaining food stores is important. The bees continue to feed to maintain warmth over the cold winter months. Experienced beekeepers do say you cannot go on holiday in May! Where will you sell your honey? If I have enough to sell, then probably at local school fairs, and maybe a local village shop. The quantity of honey produced by each hive is dependent on so many factors, not least the health of the queen; weather, food source and disease all play a role.

Julia Ratcliffe with one of her hives

Other sources of local honey around the area: Otters Fine Foods, 19 Mill Street, Oakham, LE15 6EA Kavanagh’s Tea Room, 2 Church Street, Oakham, LE15 6DR Collyweston Community Shop and many village shops, farm shops and garden centres stock honey from beekeepers local to their businesses. Buy honey at the garden gate from: Rob Cooke, 2 Barrowden Road, Ketton, PE9 3RJ John Ireland, 12 West Mill, Easton on the Hill, PE9 3NX … and, of course, at many other locations around the region.



The George at Ashley

Sunday Brunch now available 11am - 2.30pm Menu includes: The Big Breakfast

French Brioche Toast, Treacle Streaky Bacon, Banana and Maple Syrup Mac n Cheese with or without Bacon Waffles, Honeyed Duck Confit, Fried Egg Homemade Baked Beans and Cumberland Sausages on Toast! V or Not!

To book phone 01858 5654511

21 Main Street, Ashley, Northamptonshire. LE16 8HF T 01858 565411 E



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Window boxes with wow! Fill window boxes with plants from the garden centre this month, and you’ll be rewarded with a summer of colour. Use our top tips to keep them looking their best: • Deadhead regularly, pinching off any dead flowers and yellowing leaves. Removing the old flowers will encourage new ones to grow. • Give your window boxes a weekly feed to keep them looking lush. Use a liquid plant fertiliser and dilute it according to the instructions. • Regular watering is the key to success. Watch out for boxes placed under overhanging roofs, as they will need extra moisture. Don’t overdo it though – you can tell if your pots need a drink by pushing your finger into the compost. If it’s moist, you don’t need to water the plants.



Celebrate British Flowers What could be nicer than a vase of sweet-smelling seasonal cottage flowers on the kitchen table? Until the 1970s, almost all the flowers bought in the high street were British grown, but over the past few decades this has changed, so that many now originate from large-scale growers and are routed through Dutch auctions, or they are sourced in hot countries, racking up thousands of air miles. British Flowers Week, from June 18-24, celebrates the beauty of home-grown flowers and the independent florists who sell them. British flowers are also available at local markets, including Oakham, Uppingham and Stamford. We love the Fenflora cut-flower stall in High Street, Stamford, which appears every fortnight opposite the library. Seasonal blooms in riotous colours, freshly picked from the farm at Tydd St Mary, near Wisbech, are available at such reasonable prices that you can afford to fill a few vases.

The days when brown teak garden furniture was the only choice around are long gone. This year, retailers are offering a huge range of colours and styles to create a relaxing outdoor room. Choose from hot neon colours in retro shapes, an artisan look in washed eucalyptus or even stylish rope chairs, made using the same material as fishermen’s nets to create a tactile and comfortable back. Sam Ring of the outdoor living department at John Lewis, Peterborough, says: “there are so many different styles for summer 2018, and many of the pieces can be used in the conservatory, as well as outdoors.” Even if you only have a tiny garden, there is outdoor furniture to fit the space. The “Porto” range at John Lewis is a compact bistro set in 1950s-inspired shapes, and comes in palm (green), heatwave (punchy orange) or neutral French Grey. If you have a larger patio or deck, try the striking curved “Cabana” range, with a beautiful double sofa that is deep and comfortable. “There has been a real shift away from wood and rattan, although of course we do still stock them,” says Sam. She recommends covering furniture in winter, even though some manufacturers say that it isn’t necessary. “The odd shower is fine over summer, but if you can bring it inside in the colder months, it will last longer,” she advises.

Growing in my garden now Geum

These pretty perennials glow like small jewels in my borders, and they’re so easy to grow. I like the hot orange ones, such as “Cooky”, but they come in a range of citrus shades. They grow in compact clumps of hairy leaves, with flowers on long stems, from May to late summer. Plant in a sunny spot, in fertile, moist soil. You can grow them in pots, so long as they are kept well watered. Pair with purple salvias for a shot of colour, or plant them alongside swishy ornamental grasses. Widely available from garden centres such as Welland Vale, near Uppingham, and Stamford Garden Centre.



Garden Inspiration! Belvoir Flower and Garden Show

New this year is a garden party and show in the lovely grounds of Belvoir Castle on the weekend of 14/15 July. Be inspired by the show gardens, browse in the craft and floral marquee and shop a host of stalls selling plants, garden equipment and gorgeous things for your outdoor space. There will be live music and an educational area, too. Pre-book tickets at

Gretton Garden Services Reliable landscape gardener located in the Gretton area and offering a range of gardening services including: • Grass Cutting • Hedge Cutting • Fencing • Decking • Patios

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A liTtlE DAy out

A liTtlE TReaT I am well known amongst my friends and family as a member of the sugar police. But every once in a while I like to treat my two sons to a trip to Gallone’s Ice Cream Parlour in Adam and Eve Street, Market Harborough. And, my oh my, they have a mouthwatering array of sweet treats. The menu includes sundaes, waffles and pancakes for around £5 to £6, each swimming with dollops of luscious ice cream. My sugardeprived pair often go crazy and order the fondue to share – this includes a selection of eight ice creams, dipping chocolate and slabs of chocolate fudge brownie, rocky road and lemon crumble cake. Guaranteed to bring a sickly smile to anyone’s face.

A liTtlE SPorT

My eldest has just discovered football and keeps nagging me to join a club. One great place to learn key skills is Oakham’s Young Stars Football, which runs coaching sessions throughout the year for girls and boys aged four to 14. Each Sunday they run a session for four- to six-year-olds from 11am to 12pm, and you can just turn up and play for £3.50. Just remember to bring shin pads and a drink to the session at Lands’ End UK, Lands End Way, Oakham. More information at

The Rutland County Show on Sunday 3 June is a great opportunity to learn about rural life in England’s smallest county. The 186th show held by the Rutland Agricultural Society at the Rutland Showground will have classes for sheep, cattle, goats and horses together with produce, displays, vintage vehicles, tractors, plus attractions in the main ring. Gates open at 8.30am, and tickets are £12.50 for adults (under 16s free). Another Rutland highlight this month: if you are looking for something a little more wet and wild, then why not take the kids along to the National Watersports Festival at Rutland Water on Friday 8 June until Sunday 10 June. A day ticket is £25, and you can have taster sessions in dinghy, kayak and windsurfing whilst watching the experts compete. Tickets at

LIttLe livIng

The sun is shining (hopefully) and the days are long, so it is a great time of year to get out with the kids and discover everything the region has to offer. Lily Canter rounds up some of the events and activities to keep your little ones busy right up until the summer holidays.

A liTtlE SHopPinG Get the kids kitted out for the summer with the charming Knot So Bad clothing range now in stock at Fords of Oakham. This boys’ twopiece T-shirt and shorts set is available for just £12.99. Girls can enjoy this summery palm tree sequin dress for £8.99 and this paisley print jumpsuit for £14.99. All items are available from age two to eight.

A liTtlE ACtiVitY My boys, who are aged two and five, are both addicted to Lego. So I was delighted to discover that Market Harborough Library now runs a free Lego session every Thursday after school from 3.30pm to 5pm. No need to book – just turn up and dig into the Lego and Duplo. The library also runs a Wriggly Readers Story and Rhyme Time session for under fives every Thursday from 10.30am to 11am. On Saturday 9 June there’s also Storytime for all ages. If your kids enjoy listening to music and having a good boogie, then why not try out Babygigs, concerts aimed at babies and young children. The next event is at Market Harborough Methodist Church, Northampton Road, on Monday 18 June from 10am, and tickets are £3 to £5. Find out more at



A liTtlE BAkiNg Almond and Cacao Thumbprint Cookies This month Emma Steed from Nature’s Pantry in Market Harborough has cooked up a special treat with these almond and cacao thumbprint cookies. No processed sugar is used in the recipe, making it the perfect guilt-free children’s treat. They are especially delicious when served with Emma’s raspberry chia jam (featured in our February 2018 issue, which is still available online, if you don’t have a paper copy… see p3 for website details). Emma runs regular children’s cooking workshops at her deli in Church Street. Find out more at Ingredients: Biscuits • 1 1/4 cup almond flour • 1 tsp baking powder • Pinch of salt • 1/4 cup maple syrup • 1/4 cup almond butter • 1 tsp vanilla extract Chocolate • 1tbsp maple syrup • 2 tbsp organic raw cacao • 1 tbsp coconut oil • 2 tbsp almond butter

Mix the dry biscuit ingredients first, then add the wet ingredients and mix to make a firm dough; set aside. Next add all the chocolate ingredients into a heavy bottom saucepan and melt on a gentle heat. Make equal-sized balls with the dough and push a thumb into the centre to form a dip. Fill the dip with the chocolate mixture. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes at 180ºC (according to your oven and the size of the balls). Enjoy!

NEW LASER TAG BIRTHDAY PARTIES Parties are from 5pm – 7pm Monday – Thursday I 5.30pm – 7.30pm Friday – Sunday £15.95 per head for a 2 hour party 1 hour of this is exclusive hire for the laser tag Our party food options will be included, as will party bags Pay & Play Parties also available during the school holidays. WARNING: During the laser tag games the room will be fairly dark and will involve disco lights.

Three Manors Retail Park, Market Harborough, LE16 7QE T: 01858 419 743 E:


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Blurring the boundaries Stonecrop House in the village of Wing in Rutland is one of seven gardens opening under the National Garden Scheme (NGS) on Sunday 17 June. Prepare to be surprised, says Fiona Cumberpatch PHOTOGRAPHY: ELLI DEAN


OUNTRY gardens in midsummer usually suggest hollyhocks, lavender and roses round the door. But Nicky and Matthew Lyttelton’s stunning home tucked away down a lane on the outskirts of the village of Wing in Rutland could not be further from the cliché. Built in 2012 on the site of an old plant nursery, the modern stone and glass house appears from the landscape like a giant sculpture, with folding “living roofs” (planted with sedums or “stonecrop”, which gives the house its name) that seem to rise out of the ground and over its two wings. A large drystone wall, built from local Clipsham stone, acts as a thermal buffer. To the south of the property, huge glass windows overlook the garden, with its large wildflower meadow, and beyond, with views of the undulating countryside. “We moved here from an old farmhouse in Hallaton,” explains Nicky. “When you were inside that house, you couldn’t really see the garden, so when we were thinking about the design of this one, we wanted to blur the boundaries between inside and out.” Matthew agrees, adding: “It is all about having more communication between the two.” The couple worked with architect Sarah Featherstone of Featherstone Young to realise their design. “We have always liked modern architecture,” explains Nicky. Inside the house, the timber-clad ceiling follows the roof profile, spiralling over the main living rooms and rising to the glazed south side. The two wings of the building fit with the environmentally friendly principles behind the whole property: the main wing is heated for day-to-day living, with the second guest wing opened up when friends and family come to stay. They admit that the major project and two-year build was “a labour of love”, and exchange wry grins. The kitchen leads to a sheltered outdoor terraced area, with a Big Green Egg (a ceramic BBQ, grill, pizza oven and low-and-slow roaster) in permanent residence. The central feature of the three-quarter-of-an-acre plot, though, is the wildflower meadow, which sweeps away from the property. At the time of visiting, it was carpeted with cowslips; by June it will feature a mass of ox-eye daisies punctuated with yarrow, sorrel and a few cornflowers. “We sowed the meadow in autumn 2013 with a wildflower meadow mix,” explains Matthew. “Our soil is a bit too rich for ideal conditions, and it is still a work in progress, but it already attracts many butterflies, bees and field mice.” It may look beautifully wild and random, providing the perfect foil to the angularity of the house, but the meadow takes some managing.


Matthew mows paths through it, and it is cut down completely once a year. “Our favourite season for the meadow is probably June,” says Nicky. To the right of the house, as you approach, is a shady border, planted with euphorbias, hostas, Solomon’s Seal and hellebores. Over the fence scrambles a beautiful evergreen Clematis Armandii, with exotic, white, scented flowers. Other defined areas include a productive vegetable garden, with currant bushes, a small and recently planted orchard featuring apple, pear, plum, medlar, quince and cherry trees, and Matthew’s “tree sanctuary”, an area that he is devoting to a collection of rare species. These include chequer trees (sorbus torminalis) with flame-shaped leaves that turn red and gold in the autumn. Matthew has also planted ash trees, a conscious decision to help counter the threat of Chalara ash dieback, a deadly disease that is predicted to cause widespread damage to the UK’s ash population. It’s a big space to keep under control. How do they do it? “We’ve always gardened, and we’ve grown into it more with age. In the summer, we each spend about 12 hours a week out here,” says Nicky. “I do most of the vegetable gardening, Matthew is the tree person, and we share the perennials.” She cites the late gardener and writer Christopher Lloyd and his home at Great Dixter, East Sussex, as an influence on their garden style. Positioned through the grounds are some intriguing modern sculptures, which lead the eye. In the lawn area to the left of the house is a striking work by Peter Beard, featuring three smooth ovals of Kilkenny limestone on a plinth. Nicky and Matthew have also created their own features, by leaving partially uncovered, roughly hewn lumps of limestone that were uncovered when the house was being built, for example. It is reassuring to hear that even seasoned gardeners such as Matthew and Nicky face challenges. The living roof, planted with sedums is stunning with its variegated reddish-green hues, but maintaining it is not always straightforward. It is planted into membranes, and one area of the growth is prone to drying out, while another disadvantage is that the plant spreads voraciously from the roof into the garden beds. “It’s a continuous battle to control it,” says Matthew. The wind also creates challenges, but he is hoping that his tree planting will help to counter this by providing a barrier to the elements. The couple regard the space as a work in progress, with many more developments to come. Working with nature, rather than against it, is clearly a guiding principle in this perfectly balanced marriage of the sleekly modern and the gloriously wild.



Nicky and Matthew Lyttelton and their dog


Wing has seven open gardens under the NGS on Sunday 17 June, from 11am to 5pm, including Stonecrop House. Adults: £5, children, free. All sizes and styles of garden will be represented. Teas and refreshments will be served in the Village Hall. There are two open studios displaying the owners’ works. Partial wheelchair access to some gardens. RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH LIVING JUNE 2018


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Visit Kibworth

It’s time for BookFest, the annual book festival, making June the perfect month to check out Kibworth. WORDS AND PHOTOS: LILY CANTER


Situated just a few miles north of Market Harborough, the villages of Kibworth Beauchamp and Kibworth Harcourt house a population of around 6,000 residents. The two parishes, which are separated by the A6, were made famous in 2010 when they featured in Michael Wood’s BBC documentary “Story of England”, which framed the history of England through Kibworth. The legacy of the television programme saw the development of a guide book featuring heritage trails in the area and interpretation panels around the villages. Today the two high streets are a treasure trove of artisans and independent retailers selling everything from fashion and food to glassware, ceramics and textiles. There’s an independent bookshop, too, and each June it hosts a book festival, the BookFest; this year the event is running from 5–27 June, making this month an absolutely great time to visit.

No. 56

36 High Street, LE8 0HQ, 0116 279 6588 This charming women’s clothes shop has a great collection of casual and contemporary garments plus a range of accessories including bags, jewellery and scarves. It caters for a wide selection of ages and figure shapes with its structured and unstructured clothing and brands such as Oui, Lily and Me, Oska, MAC and Ischiko. There is even a settee at the rear of the shop, so any weary shopping partners (or children in tow) can sit down and relax whilst you take your time to try on the latest fashions.

Mon Amie The Barn, 29 High Street, LE8 0HS, 07540 000490 Combining the knowledge, skills and passion of two lifelong friends, this workshop and store presents a beautifully curated range of lifestyle products and fabulous faux flowers. The company also provides specialist floral displays for weddings and events as well as offering artistry courses in floristry, cooking, painting, garden sculpture and more. Each week the shop runs Flower Friday, when customers can order beautiful blooms to a value of their choice for the home or as gifts, for collection or local delivery.

Kibworth Garden Centre Fleckney Road, LE8 0HJ, 0116 279 2754 Providing extensive knowledge on plants great and small, this family business has been running for 30 years and is open seven days a week. The company grows its own plants, and a large range of herbaceous perennials, alpines, heathers, fruit trees, garden shrubs and trees. In season the garden centre also stocks bulbs and bedding plants as well as a variety of pots, composts and gardening supplies. They will deliver for free and anything that they do not grow themselves can be sourced for customers. Blooming marvellous.

56 High Street, LE8 0HQ, 0116 279 1111, No. 56 combines a shop and a tardis of a café, described by owner Louise Jopling as a “refuge for sustenance and shopping”. And it certainly is a welcoming hidden gem with a large café that specialises in cakes and light lunches and caters for everyone. There are plugs and charging points if you need to work, a space at the back to park your bicycle, highchairs to park your children and the offer of a biscuit for any well-behaved dogs. The shelves dotted around the café are adorned with contemporary and tactile homeware and artisan crafts including ceramics, art, photography, books, yarns, glassware, shoes, cushions and bath products. “I like to stock things that are really beautiful to look at and touch. The menu tries to be the same, simple but with brilliant flavours,” said textile artist Louise. She set up the café and shop six months ago to provide a space to meet and eat where customers can also take part in a range of workshops including glass fusion, knitting, crochet and felting. “I went from global recruitment to running a café,” laughs Louise. “It is a really welcoming community in Kibworth, and the independent shops all look after each other.”

Francesca 13 Harcourt Estate, LE8 0NE, 0116 279 3408, This women’s fashion store offers a range from essentials to businesswear and clothes for special occasions. It features labels such as Ficelle, Kokomarina, Pomodoro and Viccio.



Visit Kibworth The Bookshop Kibworth 52 High Street, LE8 0HQ, 0116 279 1121, This triple-award-winning bookshop, where you can have a cup of tea and relax on the sofa whilst thumbing through a pick of top tomes, is the perfect haven for any bookworm. With a wide selection of fiction, non-fiction, children’s and travel books, this independent retailer holds its own against any national chain especially with its homely feel, including wooden floors and an open fireplace upstairs. The store also runs a book club, offers a “book of the month” (buy this and you get a mystery bonus book for free) and has its very own book festival, the BookFest, which this year runs from Tuesday 5 June until Wednesday 27 June and includes talks and signings by Carol Ann Duffy (20 June, at the bookshop), Lisa Jewell (27 June, Kibworth Library) and Michael Brooks (14 June, Kibworth Library) plus many more. See the website for full details of the BookFest Passport – a new initiative that gets you into six author events for £25 (saving £5 in advance or £11 off the door prices).

Kibworth Wines 32 High Street, LE8 0HQ, 0116 279 2283 A wide range of quality wines, beers and spirits on offer until 10pm, seven days a week.

Kibworth Antiques Centre

The Lighthouse 9 Station Street, LE8 0LN, 0116 279 6260, This delicious seafood restaurant offers a range of meals from business lunches to paella nights to bespoke five-course meals. Between 6pm and 7pm, from Tuesday to Friday, children under the age of 10 can eat for £5.50.

Julian’s Hair Studio 38 High Street, LE8 0HQ, 0116 279 6177 Just pop into this award-winning street barbers without an appointment to meet the friendly staff and get a quick cut.

The Beauty Room

19 Harborough Road, LE8 0RB, 0116 279 3386, This is the real go-to place for unusual and sought-after antiques and curios. The large showroom offers a changing, eclectic mix of items from interior and exterior period and retro furniture to vintage clothing, luggage, jewellery, mirrors, glassware and lots more.

GEMS 47 High Street, LE8 0HS, Sally and Andy Anderson set up GEMS charity in June 2012 to raise funds for the oncology department at Leicester Royal Infirmary, after four close friends attended the chemotherapy suite there. The charity is named after Gill, Elizabeth, Meg and Sarah and to date has pledged almost £160,000 to the hospital through fundraising and sales from items in its quirky pop-up shop. The store sells a mixture of furniture and furnishings.

34a High Street, LE8 0HQ, 0116 279 2725, Enjoy a luxury treatment in relaxing surroundings using some of the best products in the industry. Explore the Guinot skincare range or choose from 60 vitamin-enriched shades in the Jessica Nail range. Or why not try the Fake Bake booth for a natural, even, all-year-round tan. The salon also offers a range of body treatments including sensual aromatherapy massage and an anti-ageing facial for the hands.


The Swan

This family-friendly pub has recently been given a makeover by its new owners and has a range of menus serving wholesome food. Choose between grazers, light bites and sandwiches served on rustic bread or opt for a hearty main meal and indulgent pudding. During the week there are special themed nights including Monday pie night and Tuesday steak night. On our visit during a Friday lunchtime we opted for an 8oz rump steak burger (£9.95) and Swan’s fish pie (£10.95). The impressive burger came laden with balsamic bacon jam and crisp chunky chips. Meanwhile, the piping hot, creamy fish pie was served with a delicious



cheesy topping and an eye-catching beetroot battered prawn plus crunchy seasonal vegetables. Both dishes were tasty and filling and served up in comfy surroundings. It was also nice to hear that much of the produce – such as the meats, breads and desserts are sourced locally. I can’t wait to go back and try out their homemade rocky road! The Swan, 5 High Street, Kibworth Beauchamp, LE8 0LR, 0116 279 2165,

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HEALTH Toe-tally fabulous feet!& Hands up if you’re guilty of neglecting your feet? As a nation we spend millions on manicures every year, but our poor old soles often don’t get a look in. With summer almost upon us, it’s time to hotfoot it to your local salon or specialist to get your feet sandal-ready…

Perfect podiatry Podiatrists are healthcare professionals, who treat, prevent and diagnose foot and lower limb problems including heel pain, flat feet, in-grown toenails and sports injuries. Sarah Carr and associates run a private podiatry and chiropody clinic within the Two Shires doctors’ surgery in Market Harborough. Sarah gave me her top tips to ensure your feet stay healthy: • Always dry feet well, particularly in between the toes, to prevent the risk of fungal infections. • Apply a moisturising cream to any dry or callused areas but never in between the toes. • Wear good, supportive shoes. Strap-fastening or lace ups are best, with a sturdy sole and a deep toe box that accommodates the foot. • Rotate footwear – don’t wear the same pair of shoes every day. • Cut toenails straight across and try to avoid digging down the sides. • Limit the time spent wearing high heels or pointy shoes. If wearing heels, vary the heel height. • Wear flip flops in communal changing areas to avoid picking up bugs. • Be careful at home in slippers – non-supportive ones can cause falls. • Always wear natural-fibre socks to absorb moisture and prevent shoe rubbing. • If you do have foot concerns or need help with footcare, it is recommended you see a HCPC(Health and Care Professions Council) registered podiatrist or chiropodist.

Mobile footcare Julie Hastings runs a mobile clinic in Market Harborough, “Foot First Podiatry’, offering home-visit chiropody and podiatry services for the whole family. Elderly clients and those who struggle to make it to a clinic particularly benefit from this service, and Julie offers palliative footcare to help elderly clients suffering from arthritis or other joint conditions remain as mobile and comfortable as possible. Julie also has years of experience of working with “at-risk” patients, including those who suffer with diabetes and vascular disease. Standard treatments start from £37 and cover areas such cutting problem nails, reduction and maintenance of painful corns, and callus removal. Specialist treatments include diabetic foot assessment, advice on verrucae, offloading vulnerable and painful areas, and treatments for ingrowing toe nails. Clients can purchase specialist foot-maintenance products (avoiding a trip to the chemist), including dressings, interdigital wedges to relieve pressure on painful toes, and professional footcare creams.



& BEAUTY Relaxing reflexology Foot reflexology is a non-invasive therapy that uses the application of pressure on the feet to heal imbalances in corresponding organs, glands and parts of the body. Registered reflexologist Karen Joseph is based in Tur Langton and offers Ayurvedic Kansa Vatki foot massage, a relaxing treatment that helps to balance body, mind and spirit. The treatment begins by cleansing the feet and legs, followed by some relaxing foot and leg moves. Then, slowly and methodically the toes, feet, ankles and calves are encouraged to relax using massage techniques carried out with the aid of oils. At the heart of the treatment is the 3-metal Kansa Vatki, a small metal bowl that is said to have beneficial properties for the immune system. The treatment improves blood and lymphatic circulation, enhances joint mobility in the lower limbs, relaxes and revitalises tired feet and legs and is excellent for anyone who spends long hours on their feet.

Best “at-home” treats for feet Soften dry skin

Fun foot facts • Feet have half a million sweat glands! It’s no wonder that trainers get a bit whiffy from time to time. • The skin on your feet is the thickest on the whole of your body – but that shouldn’t mean your hard-working tootsies are ignored. Don’t forget to give them the TLC they deserve! • Think you know your shoe size? Prepare to be surprised! It’s reported that up to 35 per cent of the population are wearing the wrong shoe size. So, if your feet hurt or blister, the first stop should be your local shoe shop to get them measured. • Slowly does it… toenails grow much slower than fingernails – about 1mm a month according to the Academy of Dermatology, whereas fingernails grow the same amount in just 10 days. If you lose a toenail to a fungal infection or injury, it could be a loooong wait before it grows back. • Hobbity feet? Don’t panic! If you’ve got hairy toes, it could be a sign of good health – more specifically, good blood circulation to your lower extremities! So, put that razor down and flash your furry feet with pride.

Banish stinky feet!

Coconut oil is an incredible remedy for dry, cracked feet. It helps to moisturise your feet and also fights fungal and bacterial infections, thanks to its antimicrobial and antifungal properties. Before going to bed, apply coconut oil generously and pop on some cotton socks. The next morning, rinse and repeat until you’re happy with your super-soft feet.

Relax tired feet

There’s nothing more relaxing than a warm brew – so why not test it out on your feet too! Choose one or a combination of the following dried herbs: lavender, sage, mint, rosemary or thyme. Place a few tablespoons of the herbs into the foot of some old tights and secure. Place sachet into a foot bath or bucket filled with warm water. Soak feet and relax!

Soothing foot massage

Combine three tablespoons of oil (grapeseed, sweet almond, jojoba, or sunflower oil are good choices) with 10 to 12 drops of eucalyptus and/or peppermint essential oil. Warm a few drops between your palms before massaging your feet and then covering them with a pair of cotton socks for a few hours to achieve maximum softness. All of these essential oils and more available from Natures Dispensary in Oakham.

There are lots of over-the-counter remedies for feet that smell less than fragrant, but, if you fancy trying a natural alternative, raid the kitchen cupboard for some vinegar and treat them to a daily soak of one part vinegar and two parts water. This reduces the level of bacteria that cause foot odour.

Pampering pedicures

Once your feet are in tip-top condition, it’s time to give them a finishing touch so that they look fabulous all summer long. My top choices for perfect polishes are Ellique and Barnsdale Spa. Ellique has a relaxing pedicure station, where clients can sit and soak their feet before choosing from a huge selection of OPI gel polishes – guaranteed to last for at least 2 weeks, so an ideal choice for a beach holiday. Barnsdale Spa offers a whole host of pedicure treats on its treatment menu, from a nail shape and cuticle tidy to the Jessica Zenspa Deluxe pedicure, which includes a foot masque and thermal booties. A paraffin wax treatment can be added to all of the pedicures for an additional £9. If you fancy a warming treat for feet, then trot off to the luxurious surroundings of Ragdale Hall for their Perfect Sense Paraffin Wax foot treatment. This promises to be a luxurious pampering, softening experience for dry, tired and hard-working feet, starting with an intense exfoliation. Feet are then submerged in a warm mixture of paraffin, a petroleumbased wax, and mineral oil. This warming treatment soothes aching joints and improves circulation, and the combination of oil and wax softens rough skin – particularly beneficial if you are worried about cracked, dry heels.

DIRECTORY Barnsdale Spa, Barnsdale Hall Hotel, Oakham, Rutland, 01572 771313, Ellique, 55 South Street, Oakham, 01572 723950 Julie Hastings Chiropody & Podiatry BSc (Hons) MChS, HPC Reg, 07866 614636, Karen Joseph MAR, MFHT, Tur Langton, Market Harborough, 07967 645866, Natures Dispensary, 7 Mill Street, Oakham, 01572 771231, Ragdale Hall Spa, Ragdale Village, Melton Mowbray, 01664 433043, Sarah Carr Chiropody & Podiatry BSc (Hons), MChS, HPC Reg, Two Shires Surgery, Torch House, Market Harborough, 01858 434523 (clinic appointments), 07974 665924 (home visits) RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH LIVING JUNE 2018


Healthy teeth! Looking after your teeth is a life-long commitment, and it’s fundamental to establish a good routine from an early age. We asked the experts at Ditchfield Dental Practice in Market Harborough to give us their advice on children’s oral health.


STABLISHING a good toothbrushing routine from a young age is the first step to healthy teeth in the future. Children need help and supervision to brush from when they get their very first teeth until the age of around 10. Although everyone is different, babies generally start teething at around 6 months old, with this (often painful) process carrying on until all 20 baby teeth come through. At about 6 years old, the adult teeth will begin to appear – these have usually all come through at around 14 years old.

Brush from the very first tooth

As soon as the first tooth begins to emerge, it is time to start brushing. Brush twice a day, morning and evening. A small child does not have the manual skills to brush properly and cannot understand the long-term effects of poor brushing, so they will need help.

Brushing doesn’t have to Be a chore

All children refuse to brush their teeth at some point. Creating a positive atmosphere around the brushing routine can make it more fun. Try using a song or story whilst you are brushing. Toothbrushing does not always need to take place in the bathroom. To make it easier, you could brush in bed or in the garden – let your child lie on their back with their head nearest to you, for example. When they are older, they can sit in your lap, leaning their head on your arm.

go to bed with clean teeth

Night-time brushing is very important. Children (and adults) should always go to bed with clean teeth. Think of all the food and drink you put into your mouth during the day. During the night, there is less saliva in the mouth, which makes the teeth more vulnerable to caries.

Snack attacks

Let the teeth rest – this means, where possible, avoid eating between meals. Every time your child eats or drinks, bacteria start producing acids that corrode the teeth. After about half an hour the saliva has helped to neutralise the acids. If children are thirsty between meals or at night, encourage them to drink water.

Make friends with your dentiSt

Bringing children along to your dental appointments from a very young age encourages them to be relaxed in the dental environment. By the time they are ready to be taking a seat themselves, they will jump into the chair with no worries, possibly excited about the goggles, the space-age seat or the brightly coloured mouthwash.



how to BruSh

■ Brush twice a day – in the morning and before bedtime. ■ Be sure to choose age-appropriate materials. Children’s toothbrushes will have a small brush head and gentle filaments. ■ Apply a small amount of toothpaste to the toothbrush – the size of the child’s little fingernail. ■ Brush the inside, the outside and the biting surfaces of the teeth. Always brush in the same order, to make sure that no tooth surface has been forgotten. ■ Place the brush along the teeth and gum line in a 45-degree angle. Brush with small circular movements. It is important to clean the gum line too, as this where bacteria easily build up.

Ditchfield Dental Practice offers comprehensive dental care to meet all your needs, including general and preventive dentistry to maintain a healthy and pain-free mouth. The practice is currently welcoming new NHS patients and private patients. Dental treatment is free for children under 18. Ditchfield Dental Practice, 49 Fairfax Road, Market Harborough LE16 9JU, 01858 466663, email:,

Hairdressing Salon Opportunity

The Old Church, Mill Street, Oakham

Established hair salon within the spa and leisure resort of Barnsdale Hall Hotel, is offered for a business opportunity. We are looking for an entrepreneur with a passion to run and operate their own hairdressing business without the restraints of financial implications. This is an excellent opportunity for a new start or expansion of a current business. Situated within the hotel this fully fitted salon is part of a busy leisure and spa complex with a strong client base of leisure members, hotel guests and visitors to the spa with its own entrance and ample free car parking. With 3 hair and 2 back wash stations, fixtures and fittings, this is a ready to go business with little or no start-up cost. Ideally you would have your own clientele with the opportunity to grow with the volume of visitors to the site and increase your team and business accordingly. Terms and arrangements open to negotiation, please contact Russell Waters, General Manager with CV and introduction letter.

Barnsdale Hall Hotel, Nr Oakham, Rutland, LE15 8AB Tel: 01572 757 901. Fax: 01572 756 235 Email: BRASSERIE RESTAURANT HEALTH SPA CONFERENCES WEDDINGS LEISURE OSPREY RESTAURANT EVENTS




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Looking for a new challenge to tick off your bucket list? Then why not try one of Britain’s fastest-growing sports: the triathlon. With its quiet roads and large expanses of open water the region is the perfect place in which to train, as Lily Canter discovers.


HIS June hundreds of competitors will race into the cool depths of Rutland Water to compete in the 2018 Dambuster Triathlon. They represent a growing body of participants across the UK who are taking part in the multi-disciplinary event involving swimming, cycling and running.

The growth of the triathlon

The sport, which came to the country in 1983, has seen a 134 per cent increase since 2009 and has 200,000 people in England participating in at least one triathlon a year. The proportion of women participating has also risen to around a third of all triathletes, and it is by no means a young person’s sport with the average age being 42, according to the Triathlon Industry Association. The triathlon’s rising popularity has seen clubs opening up in Rutland and Market Harborough in the past five years and the establishment of Harborough Triathlon, which has filled its 300 capacity since it launched in 2014. Brian Corcoran, event organiser of Harborough Triathlon said he was keen to have an event in the town that introduced people to the world of triathlon but also had a strong community feel. The event has three distances, which can all be done as a relay, from the novice Try a Tri (200m swim/11.5k bike/2.5k run) to The Sprint (400m swim/23k bike/5k run) to The Bridge (600m swim/34.5k bike/7.5k run). It also has a range of categories and trophies to appeal to an array of ages and abilities including the “super vet” trophy for the over 60s, plus a “super mum” award and a couples’ trophy. Brian explained: “We are trying to do something a bit different, and there really is something for everyone. We buck the trend with gender and have a fifty/fifty split between men and women, and we are getting loads of newbies each year.”

Welland Valley Triathlon Club Brian Corcoran is a coach at Welland Valley Triathlon Club (WVTRI; membership fee £36 a year/annual training fee £150; www.wvtri. com), where he says members have grown exponentially. “I think it’s because of the Brownlee brothers. And it is on people’s bucket list to do an iron man (3.86km swim/180.25km cycle/42.20km run). But doing open water is very scary to people. They worry about the cold, stuff in the water and wetsuit constriction. It breaks down barriers having the Harborough Triathlon in the pool.” The man behind WVTRI is Dan Stevens, who set up the club five years ago and has already attracted 120 members from the Market Harborough, Corby and Kettering area and now has 10 coaches on board.

Open-Water Swimming If you would like to try open-water swimming, then there is no better place than Rutland Water, where sessions are held throughout the summer. When: Sundays 8am to 10am from now until 2 September 2018. Check-in opens at 7.30am and the latest arrival time is 10am. There is also a series of introductory sessions for recreational swimmers, competitive swimmers and triathletes in June. Where: Rutland Water Sports, Bull Brigg Lane, Whitwell, Rutland LE15 8BL. Cost: £7.50 including parking and cakes and drinks. Facilities: Parking, changing, lockers and showers. Wetsuits: These are mandatory below 14ºC. Optional wetsuit hire is available for £3.50. Swim course: 500m for sports training and 250m for younger swimmers. Booking: It is essential to reserve a place. You can do this at:

“Triathlon is exceptionally popular particularly for those aged 35 plus. Most of our members have done a bit of running or used to swim as a kid. But some people who come to us can only swim two lengths of the pool and that is it. We provide the support and structure to get you where you want to go,” said Dan. “I wanted to create something that was communal and I didn’t want people to feel under pressure or intimidated. Training can be lonely, so a club provides good motivation. It has an extremely supportive atmosphere because it is not as simple as nipping out for a run.” The advantage of being based in the Leicestershire-Rutland-Northamptonshire region is the opportunity for open-water swimming at locations such as Rutland Water, Stanton Lakes, Stoney Cove and Pitsford Water. And there are hundreds of triathlons to compete in all year round, many within just a short distance. “The choice is excessive,” said Dan. “You don’t need to travel more than an hour and you can get to loads of events. And the beauty of triathlon is that it is totally inclusive. You can have an 18-year-old and a 70-year-old on the same course.”




Try a triathlon!

Rutland Running and Triathlon Club One man who knows all about competing in middle age, is 69-yearold Paul Rogerson, president of Rutland Running and Triathlon Club (membership fee £15 a year; Paul originally set up a running club in 2000, when he moved to the area and discovered there was nothing similar available. But due to demand from members, the club – which now has 80 members – incorporated triathlons four years ago. “I find triathlons much less tiring than running a marathon because you are using different muscles groups for each sport. It is a better all-round workout,” said Paul. The club, which has an annual calendar of activities, makes use of the open-water sessions at Rutland Water run by inspire2tri, which operates introductory sessions enabling participants to get used to the water as well as offering advanced triathlon coaching. So, if you do decide to go for it and try a triathlon, where is the best place to get the best kit? “Rutland Cycling [helmet, right, and bike, top, are both from there] is very good for bikes and cycling gear. And I recommend that people get running shoes fitted. But it is difficult to get suits, so the best place for those is the internet,” said Paul. So, what are you waiting for? You never know what you could achieve unless you “tri”!

Committed “WAGS” The camaraderie of triathlons has kept Julia Trapp hooked since she first took up the sport seven years ago, after a friend suggested she give it a go. “Once you do it, you realise it has such a strong community support, and no one would leave you stranded. You are all in it together – much more than with any other sport I have done. At the start line everyone is making sure everyone else’s wetsuits are right, and everyone chats,” she said. Julia, from Brampton Ash, trains with friend Alex Colotto, and together they form the “WAGS” tri club, sponsored by Two Birds Gin – their acronym stands for “Wine and Gin Supping”. The sport has taken them across the UK, competing in half iron mans and ultra-swims runs, and they recently returned from a training stint in Mallorca. The pair are so dedicated that they get up at 5am every weekday morning to train before doing the school run. Each week they will do three runs, three cycles and two swims. For Julia, 44, once she started, she quickly became addicted to the sport. “I was a gymnast as a kid and I enjoyed the discipline of lots of training. I’m not a massive fan of running and I’m not great at any sport, but I like lots of sports, so with triathlon I don’t get bored. Swimming is where I am strongest. I don’t have any anxiety about open water – I absolutely love it. I have swum in some amazing places,” she said. And participating in triathlons doesn’t have to be expensive for beginners, according to Julia. “You can hire a wetsuit for the season for £50 to £75 and then buy it at the end, if you want to. They are not as expensive as you think. Race fees for branded events are not cheap, but smaller local events are not expensive.” But despite her commitment to the sport, she admits that sometimes it does get a bit hairy. “I did an event in Liverpool, and, when I was swimming, the water was full of jellyfish. They couldn’t sting but I didn’t know that at the time!” But as a winner in her age category at the Pitsford Triathlon, she believes you can never be too old to give it a go. “Your stamina gets better as you get older and you don’t have to be amazing at anything to do it.”

REGIONAL TRIATHLON EVENTS Dambuster Triathlon Saturday 16 June 2018 Bosworth Triathlon Sunday 22 July bosworth-triathlon.html Harborough Triathlon Sunday 2 September Viridian Triathlon Rutland Water Saturday 8 September DIRECTORY inspire2tri The Studio Barn, St Mary’s Rd, Manton LE15 8SU, 01572 244224, Rutland Cycling Whitwell Store, Bull Brigg Lane, Whitwell, Rutland LE15 8BL, 01780 460705. Giant Store, Normanton Car Park, Rutland Water, Nr Edith Weston, Rutland LE15 8HD, 01780 720888. Rutland Watersports Bull Brigg Lane, Whitwell, Rutland LE15 8BL, 01780 460154,



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THIS SUMMER WILL BE EFFICIENT PORTFOLIO’S FINEST! For anyone living in the county of Rutland, there has been a question on everyone’s lips: Just what is going on at the old White Lion Hotel? The Grade II Listed Oakham landmark has stood dormant for months on end, the windows have been boarded-up, and doors hermetically sealed, and all who have been permitted to enter have taken a vow of silence on the subject; that is, until now.


t is with a huge sense of pride, and relief, that I am delighted to now be able to lift the shroud of secrecy and make a huge announcement. Efficient Portfolio Wealth Management have taken over the ownership of the old White Lion and are moving to Oakham.

farming, countryside and rural life that brings together the very best of Rutland with animals, food and drink, shopping, fun and excitement.

It’s a wonderful family day out with fabulous displays, entertainment and local food and drink. This year it will For those of you who are unfamiliar with feature the ‘Shetland Pony Grand National’, the fast and furious ‘British us at Efficient Portfolio, we are a truly Scurry and Trials Driving Competition’, independent financial planning firm, a BMX display, a tractor pulling who believe in helping people clarify competition, the hilarious sheep show and realise their goals and ambitions. and so much more. Whether you fancy We do this by taking you through a splurging on some fantastic and unique unique process that allows you to get shopping, coming face-to-face with a better understanding about us, of birds of prey, or sampling some of the what you want to achieve in the future county’s finest food and drink, there is and what concerns you have about the present. We can then build your financial something for all of the family to enjoyplanning to help deliver exactly this, and come rain or shine! we are incredibly excited to now be able to offer our service in beautiful Oakham. And if that weren’t enough, we will be there too. In our marquee (a great shelter if the heavens do open on the day) we But it’s not just the move that’s got us will be collaborating with Fish Tank and excited; we have even more news to the Bat and Bottle, to provide our visitors shout about. with a selection of delicious Asian-inspired On the 3rd of June this year, our firm will canapés and give you the opportunity to taste a selection of incredible wines. We be the main sponsors of the nationally will also have live music from classical acclaimed Rutland Show. Held at the recently relocated Rutland Showground, guitarist Steve Bean, and our team will be on hand to have a chat. the Rutland Show is a showcase for

Plenty of free parking is available on the day, plus there’s a free shuttle bus available from both Oakham and Uppingham town centres. Under 18’s get in for free and with early bird tickets at only £10, the Rutland County Show is a great value day out. So, if you’re visiting the Rutland Show, please pop by our tent with your family to say hello, have a bite to eat and join us for a drink or two.

We look forward to seeing you, email hello@effic uk or call 01572 8980 60.


News & Notes

Helping you to make the most of Rutland and Market Harborough living

Newton Fallowell wins gold!


INCE the start of 2018, the British Property Awards have mystery shopped every estate agent in the Rutland area against more than 25 criteria to obtain a balanced overview of their customer service levels. Congratulations go to Newton Fallowell, who have won gold in the awards for Oakham. Newton Fallowell has now been shortlisted for a number of national awards,

which will be announced at some point later in the year. Jason Treadwell, Managing Director for Newton Fallowell, Oakham said: “I am extremely proud of the outstanding work of my team while striving for the highest levels of customer service each and every day.” Robert McLean from the British Property

Awards said: “The Oakham office of Newton Fallowell has been attributed with one of our awards, simply down to the fantastic customer service levels it has demonstrated across a prolonged period of time.” Newton Fallowell, 6 Market Street, Oakham, Rutland LE15 6DY, 01572 335005,

Home Straight celebrates ten years in business

Open the door to a world of sound!

UTLAND-based home-care service provider Home Straight has plenty to celebrate as it completes its first decade in business. Originally begun by co-directors Georgie Balmford and Stevie Jackson, Home Straight has been so successful that the team now consists of 50 carers who provide home help and personal care to older people, those living with dementia and with other disabilities. Operational across Rutland, Stamford, Melton Mowbray and all surrounding villages, Home Straight provides practical and comforting alternatives to residential care, and its services can all be tailored around individual needs. Fully regulated and approved by the Care Quality Commission, the company provides home help, personal and end-of-life care, including meal preparation, domestic chores, errands and companionship. “We specialise in support for people living with dementia and have all undertaken the latest training in this area as well as working in partnership with other care providers and health-care professionals. It has been a wonderful first ten years and I am proud that we have never lost sight of how critical it is for clients and their families to find a reliable and trustworthy provider. We are proud to provide a caring, compassionate and professional service that can make people’s lives more manageable and enjoyable.” If you are interested in joining the team (full or part-time hours available) or in finding out more about their services, contact Georgie or Stevie on 01572 722590, visit or visit the Home Straight stand at The Rutland Show on Sunday 3 June.

F you’re over 60 years old, there’s a 25 per cent chance you have a hearing loss; if you’re over 75 years, there’s a 44 per cent chance. Amazingly, only a quarter of people with a hearing loss have ever done anything about it. Visit Healthy Hearing at their Open Day on Thursday 7 June and take advantage of a free hearing assessment and demonstration of the new “Audeo B-R” from Swiss hearing-aid designers Phonak. The “Audeo B-R” is the first rechargeable hearing aid that provides 24 hours of hearing with one simple charge. In February 2017, Phonak “Audeo B-R” won the prestigious iF DESIGN AWARD for outstanding product design. Phonak rechargeable hearing aids are the quickest-charging hearing aids on the market and come with a variety of easyto-use smart-charging options, to charge up wherever you are, without having to worry about running out of power. Call 01572 759555 to book an appointment or pop in on the day at Healthy Hearing Ltd, Oakham Hearing Centre, 17b Gaol Street, Oakham LE15 6AQ. Alternatively, a free home visit can be arranged at a convenient time to suit you. See also


Topset Jewellery


STABLISHED in Rutland in 1997 and located in the heart of Uppingham, Topset Jewellery has a luxurious showroom with finely crafted jewellery, fashionable silver and a wide range of loose gemstones. On site there is a fully equipped workshop with a jeweller for repairs and hand-making fine jewellery, as well as a specialist Computer-Aided Design studio. Topset has a 3D printer, which can be used to create life-size jewellery prototypes that can then be brought to life in precious metal. This offers the best of modern technology with traditional goldsmithing skills. Topset is located at 27 High Street East, Uppingham LE15 9PY. Find out more on 01572 759100 or at





News & Notes 20% more Rutland home owners wanting to move than a year ago This month, our local property advisor and owner of UPP Property David Crooke analyses the current Rutland housing market and detects a more confident marketplace.


ITH not enough new-build properties being built locally to keep up with demand, it’s good to know more Rutland home sellers are putting their properties on to the market than a year ago. At the start of 2007 there were 110 properties for sale in Rutland, but by March 2008, when the credit crunch was really beginning to bite, that number had risen to 238, despite demand being at an all-time low. Basic economics dictate that if there is too great a supply of something and demand is poor, prices will drop. Indeed, Rutland house prices did drop by 15 to 20 per cent during the credit crunch. However, over the last 5 years, we have seen a steady decrease in the supply of properties coming on to the market for sale, coupled with steady demand, meaning that Rutland property prices have remained robust. Looking at the recent statistics, it is pleasing to note there are 20 per cent more properties for sale in Rutland today than a year ago. Definitely a step in the right direction towards a more stable property market. Even better news, since the Chancellor announced the stamp duty rule changes for first-time buyers (FTBs), my fellow agents in Rutland say that the number of FTBs registering on the majority of their books has increased year on year. That has still to follow through into more FTBs buying their first homes, however, with the heightened levels of confidence being demonstrated by both Rutland house sellers and potential house buyers, I foresee the Rutland property market will show steady yet sustained improvement during the first half of 2018. Landlords will need to keep improving their properties to ensure they get the best tenants. It is true that demand amongst FTBs is increasing, albeit from a low base. Even with the new landlord tax rules, buy-to-let in Rutland still looks a good investment. For professional advice on buying, selling, renting and managing your homes and property investments, please call UPP Property Sales & Lettings on 01572 725825. See also



Happy Birthday to The Rug Studio


USTOMERS are invited to join in the fifth birthday celebrations at The Rug Studio this month. Owner Rachel Simpson will be welcoming visitors to her showroom in Uppingham’s historic Market Place to join her for refreshments and a birthday cake. A trained weaver, Rachel studied at the Surrey Institute of Art and Design before specialising in woven textiles and undertaking a textile conservation course. She has travelled the globe extensively, learning weaving and restoration techniques from the most esteemed experts in Turkey India and Persia – a unique insight that proves invaluable in the specialist restoration work she undertakes. Since moving to Rutland and launching in Uppingham, Rachel has also opened a London warehouse and recently introduced an additional concession in Hertfordshire. “Our first five years have flown by and been so successful and eventful,” commented Rachel. “We are extremely grateful to all our loyal customers and hope that anyone looking for a new rug or to have a much-loved rug restored will consider using The Rug Studio. We are friendly, professional and are very happy to offer advice on the best solution for each individual client from cleaning, conservation and restoration to providing a sourcing and design service to make sure you have just the right rug in the right place.” Everyone is welcome to join The Rug Studio’s celebrations between 2pm and 5pm on Saturday 2 June at 2 High Street East, Uppingham LE15 9PZ. Contact Rachel on 01572 829927 or visit

Edith Weston Academy


DITH Weston Academy has the highest aspirations for all of its pupils, creating an environment that fosters a love for learning through diverse and creative opportunities and academic excellence. They were rated “Good” in all areas by Ofsted in November 2017 and commended for: • Excellent leadership and clear school vision • Their committed and skilled teaching team • Small class sizes to benefit all pupils • Pupils’ overwhelmingly positive attitudes towards learning • Superb teaching and provision in early years from ages two years onwards • Commitment to sport and exciting, creative learning opportunities They benefit from beautiful grounds on the south shore of Rutland Water, as well as their own on-site swimming facilities and a fantastic woodland and pond area within the grounds that children can explore and use to develop their learning. Visits to the school are welcome. Contact: 01780 720025,

InShade sails from 5 Day Blinds Ltd


UTLAND’S 5 Day Blinds Ltd is one of just a few specialist suppliers and installers of “InShade” conservatory sails, an innovative modern alternative to traditional conservatory blinds. In addition to controlling heat and glare, InShade sails transform the way that the sun will light your space to make it much more comfortable when the sun is dazzling. These sails are highly practical, too, being machine washable (great for getting rid of that inevitable build-up of dust and dirt, and any marks from insects), and they come with a five-year warranty. As one of a few specialist InShade suppliers, 5 Day Blinds helps its clients through the design process, starting with a free initial on-site survey, followed by a quote to give an idea of the budget required. They then get the design drawn up in 3D, working as necessary via online consultations with InShade’s own

designers. Once approved they proceed to manufacture and installation – this takes two to three weeks. Self-fitting is also available. You can see these blinds for yourselves in the conservatory of Rutland’s Barnsdale Lodge (an InShade “show site”), where 5 Day Blinds Ltd installed them to tackle the issue of glaring sunshine. For more information visit, the designated conservatory sail website, or local-suppliers/5-day-blinds/. You can also call 5 Day Blinds on 01572 759176 or visit 30 Pillings Road, Oakham LE15 6QF.



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News & Notes Anand Shoes


O you need fast and reliable shoe repairs or key cutting? In Market Harborough a great option for this is Anand Shoes, located on the High Street. A family-run independent business, established in 1995, Anand offers quality shoe repairs, key cutting and an engraving service using topgrade materials. The firm specialises in selling quality footwear by brands including Alfred Sargent, Barker, Berwick, Cheaney, Church’s, Crockett & Jones, Rieker, Steptronic and RM Williams. Anand recently introduced a men’s formal hire service, including dinner jackets, morning suits and tuxedos. The store also specialises in selling collectable Steiff teddy bears, recognisable by the iconic button in the ear. This year Anand Shoes has expanded, opening a branch in Oadby, Leicestershire, which provides similar services and stock to the Market Harborough one. 67 High Street, Market Harborough LE16 7AF, 01858 466033,

Farndon Fields Summer Shopping Weekend


EAD over to Farndon Fields on Saturday 30 June and Sunday 1 July (10am–4pm daily), for their first ever Summer Shopping Weekend. There’ll be free tastings of local food and drink, kadai firebowl cooking demonstrations, local suppliers to meet and Farndon Fields’ famous strawberries and cream to enjoy. Farndon Fields loyalty customers should note that loyalty points will be worth double when they are redeemed in the Farm Shop and Farmer’s Kitchen during this special event. It’s free to attend, so do come along with friends and family. They’re looking forward to seeing you! Farndon Fields Farm is on Farndon Road, Market Harborough, Leics LE16 9NP. For more information call 01858 464838 or visit

Garolla roller shutter doors


ANUFACTURERS of roller shutter doors, Garolla pride themselves on the speed and ease of their service. A Garolla Garage Door is instantly recognisable thanks to its sleek, compact design, effortless remote opening system and striking colour collection. Roller shutter doors provide a space-saving alternative to the big, clunky garage doors of old. No interior floor space is taken up by swinging doors, meaning there’s no need to clear the area around your door as they slide up and out of the way upon opening. Jumping out of your car to heave open a garage door in the pouring rain might sound heroic, but, in reality, it’s no fun at all. Stay dry with Garolla’s clone-proof remote opening system. You’ll be provided with a remote control upon purchase of your door. There are 18 colours from which to choose. From Painted Teak to Irish Oak, Moss Green to Anthracite Grey, the humble Garage Door never looked so good! Garolla’s Garage Door designer can be found on their website, so you can see how the door will look before you buy. Once your order’s been made, you’ll meet one of Garolla’s professional installers. They’ll survey your doorway and work with the production team to get your door made. Once that stage is complete, the same installer will fit your roller shutter door, and you’re ready to roll!

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Oakham Swim School


N Association with the Royal Life Saving Society’s Drowning Prevention Week, which this year runs from Friday 15 to Monday 25 June, Oakham Swim School’s experienced Lifeguards and Swim Teachers are visiting numerous Rutland primary schools to speak to children about the importance of water safety. Oakham Swim School offers a wide range of swim sessions for children and adults to enjoy swimming. The heated 25-metre pool is located in Oakham School’s recently refurbished Sports Centre off Kilburn Road, with free parking close by. The Junior Swim School offers small group lessons on Wednesday evenings, Saturday mornings and Sunday afternoons for children aged 4 to 16. Following Swim England’s “Learn to Swim” programme, the experienced and enthusiastic teachers build confidence in the water using strong stroke techniques. Intensive Swim courses are run throughout the school summer holidays from Monday 30 July to Friday 17 August to enable children to gain confidence and make rapid progress in all stages of swimming. Sessions are £7 a day or £30 per week. Rookie Lifeguard swim sessions are available for more confident swimmers from stage 4+, where children learn water safety in the pool or sea. Lifeguard skills are taught in both shallow and deep water using colourful materials and varied activities in a fun and friendly environment. Classes run during term time and over the school holidays.



Synchronised Swimming lessons are available for capable swimmers from stage 4+, with children learning to work as a team to perform coordinated and identical movements in time to music. Classes are held on Saturday between 9.30am and 10am. Adult Swimming lessons are held on Saturday mornings for beginnings, improvers and triathlon training to develop confidence, technique and stamina. Adult Aqua Fit classes are held on Wednesday evenings 7.10–8pm and Thursday from 12–1pm. For more information, call 01572 758 754, email info@ or visit


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Out & About

Amander Meade selects some of the best entertainment in the region this month.

Osprey Photo © John Wright Thursday 31 May EVENTS: County Cricket One-Day Cup County cricket returns to Oakham School when the Foxes (Leicestershire) take on Lancashire Lightning (Lancashire) in the Royal London One-Day Cup. Tickets £12 adults, £3 under 16s, family (2 adults and 3 under 16s) £27, at Throughout June EVENTS: Thirty Days Wild The team at Anglian Water have a full month of events and activities with a natural theme. Take in an Osprey Cruise, badger watch or join in a nature walk or the book group. Lots of the activities are free. For more details of what’s on, call 01572 653024 or visit Booking is essential. Throughout June EVENT: Rutland Open Studios Follow the art trail and visit your favourite artists in their studios. You will find a flourishing community of artists, craftspeople and designers in many different media. Rutland County Museum is also hosting an exhibition with work by local artists between 23 May and 16 June (usual museum opening times apply). All information is at Throughout June EVENT: Barnsdale Courses and Workshops This month at Barnsdale Gardens you can improve your photography with “Flowers Close Up”, tutored by award-winning botanical photographer Hemant Jariwala, or join Sandra Peck for a relaxed and informative day painting in watercolour around the subject “Raindrops on Roses”. There’s also their popular Father’s Day BBQ on 17 June from 12–4pm. Call 01572 813200 or visit Sunday 3 June, 8.30am to 5.30pm EVENT: Rutland County Show The County Show is one of the oldest agricultural shows in the country and takes place in the purpose-


built showground on the edge of Oakham each year. Visitors can expect a very traditional feel with livestock classes, horse and pony showing, British show jumping and main ring entertainment as well as a host of other classic show attractions. Fabulous local food and drink, great shopping, entertainment and lots of surprises. A fantastic family day out. Rutland Showground, Barleythorpe Tickets for adults £10 in advance and £12 on the day, children under 16 admitted free. Parking is free. Sunday 3 June, 2–4pm MUSIC: Paul McClure’s Family Concert A family-friendly yet authentic set performed by Rutland Troubadour, Paul McClure. Families with children of five years plus are invited to Fika Coffee Shop to watch Paul play. Tickets £5 each from Fika on Mill Street in Oakham. Thursday 7 June, 7.30pm EVENT: Cinema for Rutland The drama and biopic of Winston Churchill “Darkest Hour” is this month’s film. Hosted by Arts for Rutland, films are shown on the first Thursday of each month. Wine and refreshments available. Rutland County Museum Tickets are £5 on the door or in advance from Oakham Wines or Thursday 7 June to Saturday 9 June, 7pm (with 1.30pm Saturday matinee) EVENT: Theatre in the Garden Market Harborough-based theatre company e.g.Productions will be offering a unique Dinner Theatre experience this month. Audiences are able to enjoy a three-course meal and watch professional theatre all in the beautiful surroundings of The Oat Hill’s garden. This month’s play is Bernard Slade’s “Same Time Next Year”, which tells the story of a couple who meet in California, have an affair and agree to meet just once a year. They do so for the next 24 years, despite both remaining married.


Rutland County Show The Oat Hill, 31 Kettering Road, Market Harborough Prices are £40 for evening performances including a three-course meal and £25 for the matinee to include a BBQ buffet. Tickets are available from The Oat Hill on 01858 462324 with booking essential. Friday 8 to Sunday 10 June The 12th National Watersports Festival (NWF) The largest participation water sports event in the UK is taking place this year at Rutland Water, offering three fabulous days of water-based activities, including kayaking, windsurfing and stand-up paddle boarding for all ages and abilities. Rutland Water, Sykes Lane, LE15 8PX Tickets are £7.50 per person on the day, including 45-minute taster sessions, live music (11am–5pm), discounts on food and drink and free parking. Advance tickets are £5 per person. Under 5s are free. Camping available from 9am on Friday 8 June. For enquiries, contact Allan Cross on 07739 718281. Lots of information also at Saturday 9 June EVENT: Market Harborough Carnival, from 10.15am Steeped in tradition, this carnival, which raises money for local charities, has brought joy to generations of children and parents alike, and 2018 sees the community coming together once again for a full day of entertainment and celebration. There’s food, drink, music and lots of fun entertainment for the whole family – there’s even Timmy Mallet headling the proceedings. New for this year is the appointment of two Harborough Heroes (one adult, one child), voted for by locals in recognition of contribution to the town. There’s also Race Harborough, at which runners of all ages tackle a variety of Carnival courses, plus the ever-popular procession of floats put together by local businesses and organisations. Details at




Out & About

Amander Meade selects some of the best entertainment in the region this month.

Blaston Show Saturday 9 June, 7.30pm EVENT: Music in the Park, Wistow Bring your own picnic and enjoy a wonderful evening listening to music by the high-energy band Ska-aManga and the award-winning Ratby Brass Band. The evening finishes with a fabulous fireworks display in front of Wistow Hall. The concert is supporting LOROS and Young Leicestershire. Wistow Hall Tickets are £15 for adults, 10–16 years £5 in advance by calling 0116 231 8431 and under 10 years admitted free. All information at Saturday 9 and Sunday 10 June EVENT: Harringworth Celebration Weekend St John the Baptist Church will host a flower festival entitled “The Colour of Song” between 11am and 5pm daily. Lunches and teas available, and there will be musical entertainment. Admission is free. Additionally, the Cottesmore Military Wives Choir will perform on Saturday 9 June in the church from 7pm. Tickets are £10 each, sold in advance via email, with proceeds to the Harringworth Appeals Fund. Sunday 17 June, 7pm CONCERT: Music in Ashley By popular demand, the Emmanu’-EL Apostolic Gospel Academy Choir from Leicester is making a return appearance. Since their last visit, they reached the final of Gareth Malone’s Choir of the Year 2017. This event will be popular, and arrival is recommended from 6.15pm. St Mary the Virgin Church, Ashley Tickets £15 including a glass of wine and canapés. Children under 12 are admitted free. For information on tickets contact 01858 565196 or visit


Sunday 24 June from 8am EVENT: Blaston Show This fabulous family day out includes plenty of shopping as well as a dog show, horse show, cattle and sheep shows plus classic cars, vintage tractors and cutting-edge farming machinery, terrier racing, a tug of war and refreshments all day. The show is held at Slawston, which is between Market Harborough and Uppingham. Entrance costs £15 per car. A significant proportion of the money raised on the day will be given to local charities, with Rainbows hospice for children and young people and VASL this year’s principal beneficiaries. Thursday 21 June, 7pm TALK: Living with the Eagle Hunters of Mongolia This talk and slideshow is by Rutland resident and adventurer, Allan Grey. In 2015 Allan visited Mongolia, attracted not only by its remoteness and wild landscapes, but by the opportunity to live with, and photograph, the nomadic people in the far western region of the country, practising their ancient tradition of hunting with Golden Eagles. Allan has captured his Mongolian visit in words and stunning photographs – a must for anyone interested in travel. Allan’s talk will raise money for Make a Wish, a charity that fulfils life-changing wishes for children with critical illnesses (see our Rutland Hero this month, page 10). Rutland Agricultural Society’s Pavilion at The Rutland Showground Entry is free but donations would be greatly appreciated.



Tuesday 26 June to Sunday 1 July EVENTS: Music, comedy, theatre and more The Oakham Festival has been celebrating and promoting the Arts including music, theatre, art, dance and comedy since 1989. Past acts include bands Toploader and Showaddywaddy and comedians Jimmy Carr and Jeremy Hardy. For 2018 highlights include Oakham School Chamber Choir (Wed 27), a Mamma Mia singalong (Thur 28), Oakham Big Band (Thur 28), Lindy Hop Bop (Fri 29), live music at The Grainstore (Sat 30), Proms in the Park (Sat 30) and pianists the Ayoub Sisters (Sun 1). The events are at various venues across town. Box office: Oakham Castle and Rutland Toys & Dance.





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Hambleton’s history Summer is with us – and one of its great treats must surely be to sip a drink on the terrace of Rutland’s Hambleton Hall hotel while enjoying the sweeping views and manicured gardens. And here is a riddle: what is the connection between this luxurious establishment, a lady’s bosom, a pint of beer and mad dogs and Englishmen? Caroline Aston lets us in on the secret. A LADY’S BOSOM

It was 1789, and over the Channel the French Revolution was brewing; meanwhile, in London, Astley Paston Cooper, aged just 21, was celebrating his appointment as Demonstrator in Anatomy at St Thomas’s Hospital. Two years later he became joint lecturer in Anatomy and Surgery and married a rich wife. His career path was meteoric, his private surgical practice one of the largest known, and his reputation grew by the year. His largest fee was 1,000 guineas (almost £83,000 today), tossed to him in a nightcap by a rich West Indian planter after a successful operation. So illustrious was his reputation that in 1820 he successfully treated George IV on the Sir Astley recommendation of Lord Liverpool, then Prime Paston Cooper Minister and also one of Cooper’s patients. His reward was a baronetcy, and as Sir Astley Paston Cooper he helped found the medical school at Guy’s Hospital. He died in his 73rd year and lies buried beneath the chapel at Guy’s. A statue of him stands near the south entrance of St Paul’s Cathedral. And here comes the answer to part one of our riddle! Cooper’s dissections had led to the discovery of previously unnamed body parts, and some of them were named after him. Every time a lady puts on her bra, she is supporting her Cooper’s ligaments: those hard-working bits of body that buttress the bosom! A PINT OF BEER

Sir Astley left no heir to his title, so it passed to his cousin, another Astley. He had nine children, the youngest of whom was Clement Paston Astley Cooper. On 10 July 1877 Clement married a high-spirited society girl called Evangeline Julia Marshall, daughter of ship owner George Marshall, who lived in great style in London’s Portland Place. Evangeline (or Eva, as her friends called her) had two brothers and six sisters (good breeding stock, the Marshalls!) and her brother Walter grew up to become a millionaire brewer. There were quite a few newly minted millionaires in late 19th-century Britain, and so many successful brewers who were given peerages that “old money” sniffily referred to them as “the beerage”! New money began to mingle with old, and so it was with Walter Gore Marshall. In 1881, drawn by the superb hunting country in Rutland and beyond, he built what we now know as Hambleton Hall country house hotel as a hunting lodge or “box”. Carved above the door was “Fay Ce Que Voudras” (Do As You Like), an apt summing up of Walter’s raffish lifestyle. He never married, so on his 62


death in 1899 Hambleton Hall passed to his sister Eva. She was 45, and her husband Clement was nine years older. Eva was to transform the house into a sparkling social salon, a magnet for some of the greatest musical and theatrical names of the 20th century. THE HALL AND MAD DOGS AND ENGLISHMEN

The Astley Coopers had four children and lived in some grandeur. However, it was after her husband’s death in 1927 that Eva came into her own as a hostess. Among the guests at her opulent parties was that great conductor Malcolm Sargent, nicknamed “Flash Harry”. Reputedly as appreciative of women as he was of music, Sargent was well known to members of the Rutland hunting set. He was organist at Melton Mowbray church for over 10 years and renowned for his work with the Stamford Gilbert and Sullivan Society, whose concerts were attended by the future Edward VIII and George VI and many of the fox-hunting fraternity entertained by Mrs Astley Cooper. There were whispers of high jinks at Hambleton, not surprising when we know that “Flash” romanced Princess Marina and Edwina Mountbatten among many others! Possibly the most stellar guest, however, was Noel Coward, who Eva Astley Cooper had known from boyhood. Coward had enjoyed huge success in 1924 with his controversial play “The Vortex”, which at one point was playing in three London theatres at the same time. We know that Coward adored the Hambleton experience, the limitless fine food and wines, the undercurrent of upper-crust hanky panky and the bitchy wittiness at which he excelled. This lifestyle was to influence some of his later comedies – in fact, it’s thought that he wrote “Hay Fever” (which tells the Noel Coward story of the eccentric Bliss family and their country house party at Cookham on the Thames) whilst staying at the Hall. In his 1937 autobiography, “Present Indicative”, Coward wrote of his Rutland hostess: “Mrs Cooper was gay company. Her principal pleasure was to lie flat on her back upon a mattress in front of the fire and shoot off witticisms in a sort of petulant wail.” She was to die in November 1944. And the final part of our riddle? Well, possibly the best known of Coward’s comedy songs is “Mad Dogs and Englishmen”, two things that Hambleton Hall must have witnessed a’plenty during that gilded period of its history.

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Rutland Living June 2018  
Rutland Living June 2018