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H e l p i n g y o u t o g e t t h e m o s t o u t o f l i v i n g LO C A LLY

RUTLAND LIVING food/fashion/health & beauty/home & garden/lifestyle

f o o d & dr i n k Local festive fare H OME INTE R IO R S Dress up your home F A S H ION Christmas gifts

Fabulous festive food ÂŁ1.50 DECEMber 2011


Shop locally this season


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W .























t wouldn’t be Christmas without a late night shopping event and I love the Oakham one with the traditional fun fair and market stalls - a real kids wonderland, which usually succeeds in seducing me into the festive spirit. Do try and support one of the below. Thursday 8th December late night shopping in Uppingham, 5pm - 9pm Includes a vintage fun fair, music and Christmas Carols at the Market Place. Local hot food and Stalls on High Street East, craft and gift fair and real reindeer as well as the Christmas tree festival at St Peter and St Paul’s Church. Monday 12th late night shopping in Oakham, 5pm - 9pm To include quality craft and gift stalls along High Street, in Oakham Castle and inside Victoria Hall as well as excellent local hot food and a vintage fun fair at the Market Place. See page 44 for further information. Friday 2nd December Harborough Late Night Shopping, till late In the town centre there will be shops opening late, entertainment and market stalls. Wednesday 7th December Kibworth Late Night Shopping, 6pm - 9pm Most of the village’s shops will be open. Other highlights will include Father Christmas, a Mini Funfair, al fresco carol-singing from the Kibworth Primary School choir, story-reading and exhibitions at the Kibworth Library, stalls and refreshments at the Village Hall and hot food at The Swan Pub and Kibworth Fish Bar.

Abigail @RutlandLiving Editor Abigail Richardson 01572 756733 Local Living Ltd, PO Box 208, Stamford PE9 9FY Advertisement Manager, Rutland Tracy Watkinson 01572 813187 Advertisement Manager, Leicestershire Helen Walton 01780 754801 Advertising Copy & Subscriptions Rachel Beecroft 01780 765320 Head of Design Steven Handley Senior Designer Nik Ellis Publisher Nicholas Rudd-Jones 01780 765571 Email: Printed by Warner’s of Bourne

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Rutland Cover: Courtesy of the Lake Isle, Uppingham

Subscribe to Rutland & Market Harborough Living 4

Editor’s choice of the month including a Rutland Tote, a Robert Loomes’ watch, AGR Fitness and Neom cadles. Up front – Leicester High School for Girls, Rutland Health and Beauty Clinic, QKS Kitchens ad more Market Harborough Happenings – Harborough Screen, a new cinema, Aura Clinic and a stylish new interiors shop opens in Kibworth and more Shopping – Christmas Gift Favourites chosen by Market Harborough’s Shopkeepers Tech Talk – Indoor and outdoor entertainment Shopping – Christmas Decorations for Rutland’s specialist stores Village Focus - Celebrating Uppingham All About You – A unique Christmas gift, The Princess and the Pea and readers’ offers Health and beauty – The Twelve Days of Christmas countdown Fashion – Festive fashionistas Food and drink – Firenze of Kibworth Eating out – where to dine and celebrate this season Recipe – Sean Hope on Venison Food and drink – An ABC of Christmas Store Cupboard Luxuries for the Festive Season Travel – Oundle Travel, skiing all inclusive and Warwick Castle What’s on in our region this month Motoring – Fiat 500 road tested by Sturgess of Leicester Motoring – Marshall Volvo Days Out – Abbey Pumping Station and the National Space Centre, Leicester Days Out – A family day out at Snibston Discovery Museum Writer’s Spot – Tales of Rutland from the perspective of a Londoner

Market Harborough Cover: Winter scene courtesy of Glowimages

Subscriptions – annual rate £20 (UK only). Please write to The Editor, enclosing cheque made payable to Local Living Ltd Or subscribe online at


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Interior Design Beautiful Fabrics Stunning New Collections


Christmas Cheer! Fabulous Fabric Sale Starts Thursday 1st December 2011

A full range of Trunki’s and accessories Wall stickers including Hungry Caterpillar and Gruffalo Fair Trade Fairies World Wildlife Fund range of Soft Toys All new Little Experience kits

Scarlet Sky, Mill Street, Oakham, Rutland

01572 724133


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for christmas

Christmas Gifts Galore! Open Mon-Sat 9am-5pm

TURN HEADS THIS CHRISTMAS Visit our stores to view our fabulous selection of gift ideas Jewellery • Cashmere Shoes & Boots • Hats & Scarves or a “Jacks” Gift Voucher The perfect place to start your Christmas shopping! and we even Gift Wrap it for you! Please note that our Market Harborough Stores will be Open on Sundays during December !

20 Market Place, Oundle Tel: 01832 270033 16 Church St, Market Harborough Tel: 01858 431396

Cavells South Street • South St • Oakham • Rutland • LE15 6BG


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Editor’s selection Great gift ideas for December

CHRISTMAS TOTE These large jute bags are perfect for carrying all your Christmas shopping or groceries. With a limited amount find stocked in Oakham at Hirst & Hirst. Retailing at £10.


LITTLE BOWDEN WI FUNDRAISING CALENDAR The calendar is available all over Market Harborough for £5.00 per copy or email: Tel: 07796 956664 NEOM CANDLES, £38, Vanilla of Oakham These gorgeous, organic candles make the perfect Christmas gift. They smell divine, are splendidly luxurious and are right up there with the elite of candles such as Jo Malone and Miller Harris. My own favourite is the Sicilian Lemon and Fresh Basil but they come in a variety of beautiful fragrances. Neom candles are available in both larger and smaller sizes (£13) from Vanilla in Mill Street, Oakham who also stock the full range of room sprays and reed diffusers. These are definitely on my Christmas list! Vanessa Contact: 23b, Mill St, Oakham, Leicestershire LE15 6EA, Tel: 01572 757577

ALOE VERA I love this Aroma Spa Kit – Aromatherapy home spa experience: Relaxation Bath Salts, Shower Gel and Massage lotion, all with added Live Aloe Vera for deep skin penetration! £58.73. Available on line @ www.nicolaelstone.myflpbiz. com or directly from local distributor Nicola Elstone Twel: 07710 328990 BOOTS Vanessa fell in love with these boots last month but I attached the wrong image so here are the “funky shoe boots by Paul Green”, which can be found in Oakham’s fabulous new shoe shop, CoCo at £135 Contact: CoCo in Oakham 29 High St Oakham, LE15 6AH, Tel: 01572 757646

LIMITED EDITION WATCH Local watchmaker Robert Loomes has recently achieved an extraordinary ambition and become the manufacturer of entirely English-made mechanical watches. This limited edition of one hundred English Manufacture watches is exclusively and only available from Robert Loomes & Co., at 4 Saint Mary’s Hill, Stamford, Lincolnshire PE9 2DW. www.robertloomes. com Tel: 01780 481319

AGR FITNESS We hear great things from clients signing up for personal training at AGR Fitness; lots of fun, lots of variation, outdoor training as well as studio and gym sessions. Ladies or gentlemen at any level of fitness wanting to see significant results should call Tel: 0739355997 or Tel: 07702580705 for a no-obligation assessment. Amander


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Upfront What’s new this month

Fiona Cairns

Elizabeth Stanhope Interiors The Year 10 team won two trophies beating 12 schools in their first time competing in the netball tour to Malta, coming out as supreme champions of the tournament

Here come the girls..! Whether it’s surfing in Devon or winning netball tours in Malta - Leicester High School for Girls is an exciting place to be. Schools are busy places and Leicester High School for Girls is busier than most. Over the half-term holiday period there were five trips - including the School’s first ever sports tour to Malta. Julia Burns, Headmistress at the School, says: “Extracurricular activities play a key part in developing the girls’ life skills and character. I am sad to see so many schools stopping these trips - we will continue to increase ours, because the experiences girls have can be life-changing and they build the girls’ confidence which is so important for them in the future.”

Elizabeth Stanhope Interiors hosted an Evening with Fiona Cairns, Oakham, recently. She took the audience through a ‘potted history’ of the last 25 years of the company and gave an insight into how she and her husband, Kishore, built up the business from the kitchen table to being in the position to create the Wedding Cake for the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge. The Fiona Cairns bakery now creates over one million handmade and hand decorated cakes each year, selling to Waitrose, Harrods and Selfridges. Renowned for her classic cakes with a contemporary twist, Fiona Cairns has recently published two books on cake making, sharing her tips on how to create the perfect cake for any occasion. Elizabeth Stanhope Interiors customers enjoyed drinks and canapés, beautifully prepared and served by the Macmillan Cancer Support team. Both books are now available from Elizabeth Stanhope Interiors: Bake & decorate £12.99 and The Birthday Cake Book £18.99. Contact: 27 Mill Street & 1 South Street, Oakham, Rutland, LE15 6EA, Tel: 01572 722345

Right: The surfing trip to Skern Lodge in Devon is an annual favourite with the girls as an antidote to the stresses of work

Rutland Health and Beauty Clinic Rutland Health and Beauty Clinic is celebrating 30 years in business. Established in 1981, Ruth Foster is the 3rd owner for the last 3 years, having been a Beauty Therapist in Oakham for over 15 years. The Salon was one of the first in England to be associated with the exclusive Guinot Skincare of Paris and is still regarded as one of the best skincare range and treatments in the world. Together with Senior Therapists Laura Head and Charlotte Courtney, the salon still offers all the latest beauty treatments such as eyelash extensions, Shellac nail system and threading with more traditional treatments such as waxing, pedicures, manicures, bridal make ups, etc. Ruth said, “We feel the salon’s success over the years has been down to the consistent high standards of products, treatments and therapists. We’ve never been so busy, which should say something”. Rutland Health and Beauty Clinic 1a Market Street, Oakham, LE15 6DY. Tel: 01572 756589



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23B Mill Street, Oakham, LE15 6EA, Tel 01572 757577

Late night opening Thursday’s until 7.30pm Stockists of

• • • • • •

Stills Katherine Hooker MAC Jeans In Wear Bitte Kai Rand Extensive handbag, jewellery & Gift Range

Sarah Harding Interiors Ltd Joy by Emma Bridgewater

• Professional Interior Design Service • • Re-upholstery and Soft Furnishings • • Emma Bridgewater and Cath Kidston Stockists • Furniture • 27 High Street East, Uppingham, Rutland LE15 9PY Tel: 01572 823389 - 9

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MME47031•1145•M•DI (2)



Make 2011 a

Musical Christmas

Have you ever found the perfect item, something you really want for Christmas? After dropping hints to your loved ones do you find that your subtle hints have fallen on deaf ears? Well...we’re here to help. Simply ask for a wish list form and we will keep it on file and when your loved one comes in they can request a copy, easy as that. No more disappointing gifts! 3 Grosvenor House, Melton Road, Oakham LE15 6AX

Now buy on line at Cavells

• 16

Mill Street

• Oakham • Rutland • LE15


01572 756578 •

FR EE P D ri

ra z E w


Up tO

20% f Of

Open weekend for an extensive range of clothes & wellies

3Rd & 4th dEcEmbER 9:30am – 4:30pm Barnack, Stamford. PE9 3DY

tel: 01780 740115

2 miles from Burghley House


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Rutland Hair Works, Empingham

Sosennah Every

Rutland Hair Works of Empingham are pleased to announce their new beauty services and to welcome Adelle, a fully qualified beautician and hairdresser. Adelle will be offering all of the usual beauty services including manicures, pedicures, facials, back neck and shoulder massage, waxing, eyelash tinting, eyebrow shaping, false eyelashes as well as all aspects of hair care. But new to the salon is the Nubar Gelicure gel nail polish and spray tans, just in time for the party season. The Gelicure nail polish is the latest trend in gel polish which gives a glossy chip resistant finish for up to two weeks. For the Christmas season there is a glitter gel to give any coloured nails a bit of extra glamour, and if you’re feeling a bit pale then why not try the new Tantruth spray tan for that extra party glow at the introductory price of just £14 and £25 for nails. Contact: Rutland Hair Works13 Church Street Empingham, Rutland, LE15 8PN Tel: 01780 460 528


This year Stamford Christmas Festival is co-hosted by Stamford Town Partnership CIC and Stamford Town Council whose aim is to create an affordable, enjoyable and unforgettable experience for everyone; bringing the community together in work and play at the biggest Christmas Festival the town has seen! On Sunday 11th December from 10am - 4pm Stamford High Street, Red Lion Square, Sheep Market and Bath Row East and West will be full of Festive Cheer for your family enjoyment. With everything right on your doorstep, free entry and parking throughout the town there will be a spectacular entertainment line-up, fun fair attractions and 200 trade and exhibitor stalls to thrill you including a kaleidoscope of Art and Craft Markets, Luxury Festive Food and Drink halls as well as all day live entertainment from dancers, choirs, theatre, street artists, local radio, Santa’s grotto, nativity scenes and magicians. Radio Rutland’s Rob Persani will be running a Best Children’s Hat Competition where the winners can expect some really exciting prizes. For more information logon to:

QKS Kitchens open retail unit

QKS Kitchens, Stamford’s leading kitchen supplier, has just opened a shop in Star Lane, Stamford, a hundred yards from M&S. Malcolm Brandwood, the owner, commented: “We wanted to show off all the things we can do to a larger public. We have kitted out the shop from scratch, with a stunning fitted kitchen, an Aga Total and a bedroom setting. The shop is aimed to inspire you to create your dream kitchen or bedroom, and our staff will be able to help you turn that dream into a reality at an affordable price.” There’s also going to be lots of new things going on in their main showroom in the Barnack Rd. 15 new kitchen displays will be going in, and there is also a showroom devoted to larger ovens and fridges. They have five in-house designers and a virtual reality capability that helps you visualise your kitchen. As always, QKS aims to stay one step ahead of the market. If you fancy learning how to cook Indian, there is a cookery demonstration planned at the showroom on Sat Dec 3rd 10.00am-3pm, where Veronica’s Indian Food will be giving tips on how to cook Indian food. Shop address: 3 Star Lane, Stamford., PE9 1BH Showroom address: QKS The Maltings, Barnack Rd, Stamford PE9 2NA Tel: 01780 756514;

Stylish new Interiors shop opens in Kibworth Michelle Hansel Jacqui Grundy is a successful interior designer and opened her new interiors emporium in Kibworth in May of this year. Here she showcases some of the unique products she has sourced, mainly from British designers and established craftspeople including an eclectic mix of animal skin bags, hand crafted furniture and ornate picture frames, vases and jewellery. Opening late several nights a week over the festive period this is a great place to pick up some one off Christmas gifts and if you have a big event planned or are going to a Christmas Ball then Jacqui also stocks sumptuous gowns and prom dresses together with accessories, belts and bags for the party season. Jacqui can offer a complete interiors service from consultations, through to dressing a room or house and she also makes her own curtains in the workshop at the back of the shop. No job or budget is too small; Jacqui will always ensure she finds great items that signify real value for money. If you can’t find what you are looking for in the shop Jacqui will be happy to order products

A new cinema for Harborough After four years of campaigning, Harborough will see the return of a cinema early in the New Year. It will be located off St. Mary’s Road, close to the Symington’s Recreation ground and the former clubhouse will become the ‘box office’. The cinema will seat 100 people and will initially have wireless headphones with individual volume controls (the only cinema in the world to have this), as planners review the noise reports, but it is hoped these will be unnecessary and the Dolby speakers used instead. Further information about the opening, ticket sales and films available can be found on New hair, beauty and cosmetic clinic for Harborough: Promising a revolution in skin care, Aura offers a host of cosmetic treatments such as injectables for lines and thread veins, Dermaroller micro-needling, laser treatments well as the latest medical cosmetic skin-care products which complement the treatments. Dr. Ben Coyle is the Medical Director and is a member of the British Association of Cosmetic Doctors, and former director of an awardwinning cosmetic clinic in the West Midlands. In addition, the salon has a team of professional hair stylists offering cuttingedge styles, colours and extensions. Look out for their opening offers. Aura Clinic, 26 The Square, Market Harborough, LE16 7PA. Tel: 01858 462074 Christmas ideas Taste, the gourmet spice company: For foodies and anyone looking for quirky stocking fillers, then head to one of our local farm shops and pick up some of the products by Taste. All the products are natural and the ingredients freshly roasted and ground for the best flavour. The range includes cold-pressed oils, balsamic vinegars, fruit vinegars, dukkah toasted nuts, spiced sea-salts and flavoured sugars, which can be used to marinade, drizzle, rub, glaze, crumb, stir or sprinkle onto meats, salads, used in gravies or dressings. Spicy Taco is recommended to go with leftover turkey as a stir fry or added into stock for some tasty gravy. Visit their website for lots more tantalising ideas. Taste products available at the Ashley farm shop, Langton farm shop, Welton’s Deli, Waterloo farm shop as well as in farm shops in Uppingham, Stamford, Oundle and Ashby de la Zouch. Visit or Tel: 0845 122 2292


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GorGeous Footwear & Bags

Bring this ad to receive 10% off Emu Australia (water resistant sheepskin boots)

Womens Fly London Emu Australia Converse • Replay Ravel • Fitflop Mens Replay • Fly London • Bunker Converse • FitFlop 10 St Mary’s Road, Market Harborough, LE16 7DU Tel: 01858 465118. Open: 9.30 - 5.15 Mon to Sat

Dower & Hall twinkle rings from £120


Amber silver pendants from £50

18ct gold diamond cluster ring £2200

Spitfire silver & enamel cufflinks £105

Ruby ring £1350

Wedding rings in gold, platinum and palladium


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Christmas Gift Favourites

Chosen By Market Harborough’s Shopkeepers Words: Sosennah Every

1 TJ Thronton - Sterling silver and enamel pendant, £70 2 Cot’N’Togs - Forest table, £49.95 and £23.95 per chair 3 The Little Big Bra Shop - Passio Chérie in Aubergine, from £50 4 Bebooted - Pure Cashmere and wool scarves, from £28 5 GorGeous - Fly London boot, £170 6 Farndon Fields hamper range 7 Jussi - Candelabra, £19.95

 

All things sparkly Market Harborough’s traditional jeweller and gemmologist TJ Thornton has a wide selection of antique jewellery and silverware as well as more modern designs. Owner Tim says, “This winter’s trends are very much with silver and white metals as well as with coloured gemstones. Grey pearls are proving popular too.” His favourite Christmas gift is this modern pendant in the classic Art Nouveau style. For designer brand names such as Links, Gucci, Pandora, Thomas Sabo, Swarovski and others, look no further than Steffans jewellers. For active/sporty men the gold and coloured watches by ToyWatch are very on-trend.

Toys for boys and girls In addition to a whole myriad of gifts and clothes for children available in store, Cot’N’Togs has this fun and colourful animal table and chair set made from sustainable rubber-wood and natural paints. On a smaller scale, the click-clack dancing alligator is perfect for children just learning to walk at £17.50. For parents unsure of what brand of musical instrument to buy their children Matt at abc MH music is happy to help. There is a new range of Yamaha Clavinovas and a full range of electric and acoustic guitars from quality starter packages to professional players instruments, including premium brands such as Fender. Look out for the special Christmas offers on Les Paul guitars and jazz models with free hard cases.

For home makers At Jussi on Adam & Eve Street there is a truly global feel this season. Austrian throws, advent calendars, Christmas stockings, Scottish lambs’ wool scarves and baby blankets, sparkling Swarovski crystal brooches and hair accessories and colourful vegetable ivory

jewellery from South America are just some of the latest international arrivals. Owner Bob says, “This modern candelabra, available in a chrome or satin finish can be used individually or interlinked to create a cluster and complements our new range of Danish hand-finished candles perfectly!”

Something for the ladies The Little Big Bra Shop has an innovative way to help men buy lingerie – the Christmas Gift Wish List. Ladies, all you need to do is visit the shop, get measured and write down your favourite choices on a card from which your loved one can then buy. You still get a surprise on Christmas day and importantly your present will fit! Karen’s recommends the Passionata Lingerie set for a red hot Christmas! Owner Liz from new boutique Bebooted picks out one of their pure Cashmere and pure wool scarves as the perfect Christmas gift, reasonably priced from £28. GorGeous shoes has something for the party season as well as the everyday. Look well heeled and edgy whilst Christmas shopping in this Fly London boot called Riffed, available in Dark Grey with Taupe. If all you really want for Christmas is a huge boost in self-esteem, why not talk to the advisors at the Woodland hospital in Kettering about their procedures such as breast enlargement, tummy tuck or liposuction as well as any of their non-surgical cosmetic treatments such as thread vein removals, acne treatment, laser hair removal and more?

Food Glorious Food With all thoughts turning to Christmas presents, don’t forget to pop by the Farndon Fields farm shop to place your Christmas food orders for turkey geese, hams and delicious accompaniments of stuffing, chipolatas and more now! Whilst there, you can find some unusual and interesting gifts for gardeners, cooks and a new hamper range too. Don’t forget to get your tree, the traditional Norway Spruce Christmas tree is available in different sizes as are potted trees that can be planted in the garden after the festivities.

Market Harborough directory: abc MH music - Tel: 01858 463144 Bebooted – Tel: 01858 469200 Cot’N’Togs - Tel: 01858 468568 Farndon Fields Farm Shop – Tel: 01858 464838 GorGeous - Tel: 01858 465118 Jussi - Tel: 07800 522542 Steffans - Tel: 01858 432633 The Little Big Bra Shop - Tel: 01858 465592 TJ Thornton - Tel: 01858 468858 Woodland Hospital – Tel: 01536 485466


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Stephen Diggle Jewellers Ltd Designers & Manufacturers of Diamond, Platinum & Gold Jewellery


Stephen Diggle Goldsmiths

8 Westgate Arcade, Peterborough, PE1 1PY 01733 345757



Merry Christmas and thank you to all our lovely loyal customers.

We have lots of Christmas present ideas random fun gifts from magic plastic to battery-free chicken timers, fashion and designer jewellery and a great selection of cards and wrapping paper. 11 Melton Road Oakham Rutland

01572 757461


Stephen Diggle Jewellers Ltd

17 High Street, Oakham, Rutland, LE15 6AH 01572 722737



Looking for the perfect Christmas gift? LOVELINKS & TROLLBEADS now in stock

FURLEYS Est 1976

Visit Furleys in Oakham for the ultimate shopping experience where you will find the perfect gift this Christmas

Gifts and Accessories • Home ware • Lighting • Bespoke Furniture & Upholstery Interior Design Service • Fabrics & Wallpapers • Farrow & Ball paint 7 High Street, Oakham, Rutland Tel: 01572 755539 E-mail:

51 High Street, Oakham, Rutland Tel: 01572 755170 E-mail:


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FLY FISHING COURSE £100 for half day If all this tech is too much, then head to Rutland Water, leave the phone behind and indulge yourself with a course of fly fishing lessons with Rutland Fly Fishing Adventures. With all-inclusive personal tuition from a team of experts, it’s the perfect antidote to instruction books and batteries! • Rutland Water, Normanton, Nr Oakham, Tel: 01572 722422 www. rutlandwaterflyfishing.

t-Lab T-shirt £25 t-lab is a new men’s t-shirt label from Uppingham, blending a distinctive style of art, design and popular culture. With inspiration taken from tech, music and graphic design, the t-shirts are 100% cotton from suppliers committed to sustainable social and environmental policies. Printed in the UK. • t-lab
38 High Street, Uppingham LE15 9QD, Tel: 01572 822621

David Corfield looks to the world of gadgets for indoor entertainment – and an outdoor surprise…

TECHTALK 3d TV! £2290 Sure, you can snag a 3D TV for south of £500, but will it handle the third dimension with the panache of Loewe’s Connect 3D box? No. This active-3D 40-incher also includes a hard-disk recorder for stashing extra 2D and 3D content, a MediaNet function to let you at web TV, while its MediaHome grabs vids from your PC. See, everything. • John Lewis, 2 Bath House Lane, Highcross, Leicester LE1 4SA Tel: 0116 242 5777

NIKON J1 £550 Nikon has released a mirrorless compact capable of blowing your digital socks off. The J1 is capable of taking 20 shots in a single second. It even reels off images before you fully depress the shutter. Throw in tip-top lenses and you have serious snapping power. • Jessops, 43-45 Granby Street, Leicester LE1 6EH, Tel: 0845 458 7168 SOUND SENSATION £85 Pure sure does like to knock out a radio stacked with features – this one includes 30 presets for digital stations and the chance to plug in your iPod or iPhone for starters. But it’s the Chronos iDock’s “Listen Later” function that makes this affordable audio delight really worth stumping up for. It lets you save your favourite shows, no matter what the station, and play them back whenever you fancy. • Divine Audio, Unit 8, Pipewell Rd Industrial Estate, Desborough, NN14 2SW Tel: 01536 762211

CLOCK WATCHING £165 Hold the flight to Switzerland! Design duo Patrick Bek and Oliver Fowles are creating some of the most stylish timepieces around right here in the UK. The 150 has a Japanese movement – okay, it’s mostly British – and Uniform Ware’s thinnest clock face to date, at an ultradiscreet 6.05mm. • John Lewis, 2 Bath House Lane, Highcross, Leicester LE1 4SA Tel: 0116 242 5777 TASTY SPEAKERS £200 AQ Audio’s Smart Speakers are the latest to rock Apple’s tech and are chock full of aural wonders. Each one pumps out a hefty 24W of power and they can even be used with batteries when you’re on the move, so no town will have to do without your “Smooth Grooves” mix... • Available from RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH Living DECEMBER 2011 15

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Deck the Halls! The latest looks for a festive home All items from Gates Garden Centre & Nursery unless indicated

Words: Amander Meade Cake Decorations from £3.99 Fords of Oakham


endy Haywood is head of Outdoor Living at Gates’ Nursery and Garden Centre and leads the team that makes Christmas there so special. Having scoured the trade shows from as early as February for the latest festive styles, now that it’s time to ‘deck the halls’, Wendy gives us the low down on the most popular Christmas decorations…. “Traditional red, gold and green is still far and away the strongest colour scheme but the latest bright pinks, blues and greens are more popular than ever. Multicoloured accessories really took off last year and purple is proving very strong again this season. Scented candles in all sizes complete the feel and something special for the Christmas table in either china or glass always looks lovely.” The team have outdone themselves this year with their best displays ever including lots of new features making a visit to Gates’ at Christmas a must – you will be overwhelmed by the choice for festive dining, lighting and decorating and the two large showrooms are easily navigated even with pushchairs or wheelchairs – don’t forget to visit Santa in his Grotto. Furleys offer their usual tasteful and classic range of Christmas style for mantle’s, trees or table and Home Image have some chic Christmas accessories suitable for the most contemporary home. Don’t forget the cake… Everything you need for catering the Yuletide season including the cutest cake toppers can be found in Fords.

White Reindeer £10.75 Furleys

Apple Green Bow £1.79

Gold Star £3.99

Citrus String £8.99

Directory: Furleys Tel: 01572 755539 Fords Tel: 01572 722654 Gates Nurseries Tel: 01664 454309 Home Image Tel: 01572 770222

Pink and Purple Glitter Butterflies £2.49 and £1.29 Frosted Peaks in three sizes– an ideal centerpiece £9.75, £13.75, £17 Furleys

4 Pack Pink Bauble Box £5.99 Glitter Trim Hedgehog £4.49




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Silver, Cream and Red Hanging Hearts from £1.99 Home Image

  

Pink Deco Mask £6.99 1 Large Purple & Silver Bauble £3.49 2 Multi Coloured Bauble £2.99 3 Green Glitter Bauble 99p 4 Gold Droplet Bauble £1.99 5 Gold Peacock Design Bauble £2.99 6 Green ‘Onion’ Bauble £3.69 7 Three Apple Green Baubles £1.49 8 China White & Red Bauble £2.99

Aqua Glitter Bird £3.99 Red Bird £3.29

Blue and green Coils £2.49 each Silver & White Bauble Star Frame £14.99

Satin Stocking £9.49

Large Festive Acorn £5.99 Red Berry Pick £4.49

6 Pack Pink Droplet Box £2.99



17/11/11 19:16:49


Village focus Celebrating Uppingham Why travel further afield when we’ve got such a great town on our doorsteps, asks Dave Phillips


ometimes we can all be a bit guilty of forgetting what treasures we have on our own doorsteps – and Uppingham is a case in point. It’s a quintessential market town that combines all the traditional elements that entails, while still embracing the best of the 21st Century. Many people associate Uppingham first and foremost with its public school, but the town is about a lot more than that, of course. In fact, the school, at a mere 400 years old, is a relative newcomer! Uppingham received its market charter in 1281 and if you arrive in the town centre on a Friday you’ll soon realise that that particular aspect of the town’s life is very much alive and kicking. While some other towns’ markets have declined alarmingly in recent decades, with a depressingly predictable and poor range of shabby stalls, Uppingham’s is thriving. It has arguably the best fruit and veg stall on any


market in the area, while the fresh fish stall is beyond compare. Meanwhile, on the day I visited, there was a modern twist with a young couple selling freshly-cooked Indian fare, whose spicy aromas drifted enticingly across the market square. You get the feeling that Uppingham will live up to its billing as a market town for a long time yet, but it is about much more than its market. It is the only town of its size I know where you’ll find two traditional ironmongers – and there are two butchers, too. An alarming number of country towns of similar size have long lost businesses like these, and with their loss comes an inevitable decline. Not so in Uppingham! This is the sort of place where people from the outlying villages never got out of the habit of coming to town every week for their essential supplies, whether that was a pound of sausages or a pound of nails. But no town can live on its past alone – and

happily Uppingham doesn’t have to. There aren’t many market towns that can boast an internationally-famous art gallery, for example. But Uppingham can (and it’s more than just a gallery). Goldmark Arts was set up at 14 Orange Street by Mike Goldmark 35 years ago and has grown to become a celebrated gallery specialising in 20th Century big-name artists from Britain and Europe. Gallery manager Kate Owens, one of 24 staff now employed here, was setting up a Marc Chagall exhibition on the day I turned up, but she put down the lithograph she was hanging to ask if I’d like a cup of tea! “We like to welcome our customers. We want them to have a relaxed, comfortable experience here,” she explained. There’s always something going on at Goldmark Art, which also sells fine ceramics, runs a print workshop, publishes books and, well, there’s much, much more besides. Pay them a visit and see for yourself (The tea’s lovely).


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Uppingham’s a great place to snap up a bargain. One of my favourite shops is the brilliantlynamed Junk and Disorderly at 3A Hopes Lane, where partners Juan Gonzales and Peter Richardson have for the last 12 years run one of those irresistible businesses that is neither a junk shop nor antiques, but rather a bit of both. No pretentiousness, but there’s a mixture of fine antiques and a load of collectable tat. I love it! And then there are books. For a town of its size, Uppingham is disproportionately well serves by bookshops. For example, Staniland Booksellers at 39 High Street East has a fine collection of secondhand books on music, philosophy, theatre, architecture and literature, including some magnificently-bound antiquarian volumes, reflecting the taste sof its owner, Barry Valentine-Ketchum, who founded the business back in 1972. Uppingham is also famous nationwide for its… ballgowns. Seriously. Females from far afield flock here to visit Ball Gown Heaven, at 4 Orange Street, which has been run by Adrian and Sandra Brand for the last 19 years. “We have customers from all over the East Midlands and beyond,” says Adrian. The secret of their success: at least 500 gowns in stock in sizes from zero to 28 (up to 32 on special order).

And terrific personal service, of course. It is the level of service from courteous and knowledgeable staff that can make or break small businesses. And that’s something the Norton family know all about. They have run D Norton & Sons, the ironmongers on the Market Place, for 31 years. Mark Norton and his sister Denise are the second generation to run this Aladdin’s Cave of nuts, bolts and handy tools and bits you’d forgotten you needed until you started rummaging around the well-stocked shelves. (Don’t worry, it’s a man’s thing. If you prefer to shop for quality kitchenware, don’t miss their upstairs showroom.) It’s the same story at their competitors, A E Bilsdon, in the High Street, where general ironmongery and pots and pans jostle for shelf space with electrical goods and a pets section. Shop assistant Rita Turiccac, who has worked there for 15 years, said the beautifully-crafted wickerwork was popular with customers. While you’re in the town centre, make sure you visit the 14th Century Church of St Peter and St Paul, on the Market Place. Unlike most of today’s churches, it is open every day from 8am to 5pm to welcome visitors. Although most of the present building is from the 14th Century,

there are traces of its Saxon origin to be found. I hope you’ll agree that there is plenty to celebrate at having a town as wonderful as Uppingham on our doorsteps. After a busy morning spent shopping, my partner and I celebrated by treating ourselves to lunch at the Falcon Hotel, overlooking the Market Place. She opted for a tomato and Parmesan Risotto with a balsamic reduction, while I tucked into the Falcon’s home-made lamb burger, drenched in a piquant pepper sauce. Both were delicious and the bill, with drinks, was a shade over £30. Cheers!

CONTACTS Goldmark Gallery Tel :01572 821424. Staniland Booksellers Tel:01572 821493 D Norton & Sons Tel:01572 823326 A E Bilsdon Tel:01572 823333 Junk & Disorderly Tel:01572 823796 Ball Gown Heaven Tel:01572 822390 The Falcon Hotel Tel:01572 823535


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A Gentleman needs the right Time

In sleepy Stamford a firm of extraordinary watchmakers has crafted an entirely English-made, hand-wound, mechanical wristwatch. The 39mm case is hewn from Sheffield stainless steel and turned on English lathes. The traditional English movement is engraved with acanthus leaf and flowers, where the head of each flower contains a sparkling jewel. The movement is the same design that Sir Edmund Hillary wore to conquer Everest.



Robin is a limited edition of one hundred signed and numbered watches. Elegance and discretion combine to tell no more than an Englishman’s watch should do – the right time. 01780 481319


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All About You

A Unique Christmas Gift

Reader offers and events

If you are looking for a unique and personal gift, or just something to hang on your wall, why not ask local artist Rob Ormrod to transform your house into a beautiful work of art? A recent architecture graduate from the University of Sheffield, Rob combines his training in architectural illustration, his eye for detail and his knowledge of architectural history to create a unique portrait full of character and charm which truly captures the spirit of your home. “There is a wealth of beautiful houses in Rutland”, says Rob “and as our homes are where so many of our memories are formed, I like to think I am capturing more than just bricks and mortar.” Rob set up ‘I Capture Your Castle’ after seeing how pleased his family and friends were with the drawings and paintings he had done for them, and so decided to advertise his skills to a wider audience. Past commissions have included houses dating from the 16th to the 21st Century, with no building being too large or too small. Previous customers have commissioned portraits for a wide variety of reasons, from birthday and Christmas gifts to house warming presents. Commissions start at £125 for pen and ink and £195 for watercolour and can be completed in about two weeks, although may take longer at busier times of the year. Once finished a portrait can also be used on notecards, invitations, headed notepaper and mugs. To enquire about commissioning a portrait logon to, email.,uk, or call Tel: 01572 823730.

Reader offer If you would like to win the opportunity for Rob to draw your home, to be featured in Rutland and Market Harborough Living in 2012, then write into with your 50 word answer to: Why my home is special to me. By January 1st.

Linnet, Oakham

A visit to Linnet of Oakham this December will offer you a nostalgic reminder of the joy and delight of Christmas shopping. Owner Chris Payne makes no excuses and longs for the return of the traditional Christmas magic. Each Saturday during December customers will be offered homemade lemon shortbread, a ‘winter warmer’ and a gift wrapping service on all purchases. Contact: 24 Catmos Street, Oakham, LE15 6HW. Tel: 01572 770000

The Princess and the Pea adapted by Joy Everitt

Stapleford – Ladies’ Night with salsa dancing FOR Rainbows

Uppingham Theatre Company is producing the Princess and the Pea as their pantomime this year. The story follows Prince Ranjit of Northamptipur, who is escaping from his parents and an arranged marriage, in search of a bride of his own choice. He journeys through forests, gets into trouble with lurking dangers before finding himself in the middle of a major competition in Rutland. The story is full of fun, dancing, singing and lots of audience participation. This is panto for the whole family with local references, colourful costumes and scenery. The finale is a big Bollywood extravaganza featuring colour, movement and spectacle which is performed by our magnificent cast with many young performers. Complete enjoyment for all the family so join Uppingham Theatre Company over the New Year weekend for a fantastic start to 2012. Dates Friday December 30th 7.30pm, Saturday December 31st 2.30pm, Sunday January 1st 2.00pm and 6.30pm. Tickets £10 and £8.00 concessions. Tickets available from Uppingham Sports and Books, 9 High Street East, Uppingham, LE15 9PY Tel: 01572 822211 and

Champagne and canapés and a three course meal followed by disco and live entertainment £60 per head 16th December 7pm- 11pm. Contact Amin on Tel: 07754 327364.

SPECIAL OFFER Family tickets available from Tel: 07736 318662 or Family tickets are available UNTIL 12TH DECEMBER. PRICE £25.00 for 2 adults and 2 children/concessions.


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Open till 9pm, with free parking after 5.30pm, every weeknight from 28th November to 23rd December.


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Green Man

Antiques & Restoration Ltd


Specialist fitting service

Top branded lingerie & swimwear

4 Adam & Eve Street, Market Harborough, LE16 7LT Tel: 01858 465592

Period antiques that complement 21st Century technology & style, Specialising in 17th – 20th Century mahogany, walnut & oak furniture We have lots • Georgian and collectable silver. • Free estimates given • Friendly helpful advice. • Restorations and repairs

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74 West Street, Oundle, Peterborough, PE8 4EJ (opposite Oundle Clock Shop) - Tel: 01832 270970 Open: Tuesday, Thursday, Friday & Saturday 10am – 4pm (Or by appointment)

1 hour parking outside and easy access for loading/offloading

The Oundle Clock Shop specialises in local clocks and we offer advice on full restorations and repairs.

Tel: 01832 272099


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Medical Cosmetic Clinic offering scientifically-proven anti-ageing treatments by Aura’s Medical Director Dr. Ben Coyle (Member of the British Association of Cosmetic Doctors)

Microdermabrasion & Priori Anti-Ageing Peels

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Trust in the best treatments… trust your Aura 26 The Square, Market Harborough, LE16 7PA Tel: 01858 462074

Dr Ben Coyle


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Rutland Health & Beauty Clinic

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1A Market Street, Oakham, Rutland. LE15 6DY T: 01572 756589 E:

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A friendly company arranging social and corporate walks, (theatre) trips, parties, either pre-organised or tailor made.

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The Twelve Days of

Christmas Catherine Batkin suggests starting your 12 days of Christmas at the beginning of December to ensure you look good and feel great in time for the big day!


There’s no point in trying to diet in December with all that great party food around. But start the month as you mean to go on – if you do an extra 30 minutes of exercise 3 times a week you can burn off some of those calories you’re bound to consume over the month and avoid starting the New Year feeling bloated and sluggish. Want a workout that works? Try the ‘bums, legs and tums’ class with Judith Ewing at Barnsdale on a Tuesday night. It’s torture; but you’ll get results fast!


Up your fluid intake (and I’m not talking about the alcoholic kind). The recommended amount is six large glasses a day (more, if you are sticking to the exercise plan above) and while for most of us, the thought of drinking all of that water really doesn’t appeal, it will do you the world of good. It will counteract dehydration from alcohol, make you feel better after all those late nights and really will improve the look of your skin. Take a large re-fillable bottle around with you and take a swig every time you contemplate having a coffee.


The average person puts on 6lbs in weight over Christmas and the latest craze to combat this is the Christmas pre-tox, a detox plan to offset the effects of over-indulgence later in the month. I would recommend only following for a three-day period – it’s fairly extreme and you’re far more likely to succeed if it’s for a short period of time. The basic rules are this: enjoy a fruit smoothie for breakfast (immune-boosting fruits to use include bananas, apples, blueberries, avocado, pineapple and raspberries). Lunch is homemade soup, using any vegetables except potatoes. Try pumpkin, parsnip and carrots to make the soup a bit more substantial and throw in lots of herbs and spices for added flavour. Finally, your evening meal is the biggest salad you can stomach – the more variety of colour and texture the better. But hold the dressing! Guinot Hydradermie


Overhaul your health. Often we put off taking vitamins and supplements until we get run down, but taking supplements on a regular basis can fight off winter ills. I suggest paying a visit to Leslie at Natures Dispensary in Oakham who is a mine of information about natural remedies. Some of my favourites for this time of year include acidophilus, a prebiotic which helps to balance the digestive system; essential to keep things moving with all of that rich food. And if you’re prone to seasonal sniffles, then try Echinacea – one US study found that it decreased the odds of developing a cold by 58%.



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Continued on page 28 ▲

A series of late nights will really show in your face, leaving your complexion looking grey and lacklustre, but a good facial will soon perk you up again. And one of my all time favourites is the Guinot Hydradermie, an intensely deep cleansing facial available from Rutland Health and Beauty Clinic in Oakham (£52 for an hour and a half). Using the unique hydraderm machine, the facial is tailored to specific skin types and oxygenates the skin to encourage cell renewal, resulting in a clearer, brighter, fresher complexion.


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It’s around this time that the festivities really get into full swing. Overdone it? Try this ancient remedy… after the Bacchanalian orgies in Ancient Rome, over-indulgers would peel all the cloves in a head of garlic, put them in a pan with half a pint of red wine. Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes, strain and share. This is not the ‘hair of the dog’ as the alcohol goes up in steam and the remaining tannins plus miracle working garlic do the trick – it’s certainly worth a go!


If the budget allows, treat yourself to an early Christmas present at the new Nail and Beauty Bar in Uppingham. Run by local mother and daughter duo Kim and Lauren Rees, who have identified a gap in the local market for a professional, affordable and friendly salon and offer appointments during the day and evening as well as a drop in service. The Christmas Party preparation package sounds fantastic – treat yourself to a spray tan, gel nails and an eyebrow wax or shape, all for just £40.


DAY 10

Mince pies winning the battle of the Christmas bulge? It’s time to cheat (slightly) with an Elemis detox therapy treatment at Barnsdale Spa. The Body Sculpting Cellulite and Colon Therapy is clinically proven to target stubborn cellulite and sagging skin, for visible, rapid results. A peel off body mask is applied and combined with massage to deeply cleanse the body helping firm and smooth skin, stimulate circulation and reduce fluid retention. Cleansing of the colon through abdominal massage helps to detoxify the body, working from the inside out, making you look sleeker and more streamlined in your festive frock.

DAY 11

Arrange a family day out – in the melee of Christmas, we often forget to spend time as a family and instead seem to favour rushing around impulse buying last minute stocking fillers. Stop! No one needs an extra pair of socks or a shower gel gift set. Set a day aside to do something healthy as a family instead. It doesn’t have to be expensive – walking and cycling (cycle hire at Rutland Water is open all year round, except Christmas Day and Boxing Day) are great cost-effective ways to get some fresh air and will also make you feel quite smug to boot!

DAY 12

Relax – you deserve it! I suggest booking yourself in for a relaxing massage or a spa day if you are feeling really indulgent. Try Barnsdale (fantastic leisure facilities and a huge range of treatment choices), Stapleford (amazing surroundings and afternoon tea will really make the day special) or Ragdale Hall for all-out luxury. Why not make it a social gathering and get some friends together for the day as a healthy alternative to a girl’s night out?

Directory: Natures Dispensary, 7 Mill Street, Oakham, LE15 6EA, Tel: 01572 771231, Judith Ewing, Mob: 07771 866123, Barnsdale Hall Spa, nr Oakham, LE15 8AB, Tel: 01572 771313, Stapleford Park Spa, Stapleford, Nr. Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, LE14 2EF, Tel: 01572 787057, Ragdale Hall Health Hydro, Ragdale Village, Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, LE14 3PB, Tel: 01664 433033, Rutland Water cycle hire, Tel: 01780 460060 (Whitwell), Nail and Beauty Bar, 18 Orange Street, Uppingham, Rutland, LE15 9SQ, Tel: 01572 820263 Rutland Health and Beauty Clinic, 1a Market Street, Oakham, LE15 6DY, Tel: 01572 756 589


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23B Mill Street, Oakham, LE15 6EA, Tel 01572 757577

Stockists of • Katherine Hooker

Alexander Jacket above

• Hunkydory • Hartford

Stay Cosy This Christmas LINNET of Oakham - a fabulous mix of outerwear, knitwear, dresses and original accessories - for perfect Christmas gifts.

24 Catmos Street, Oakham, LE15 8NW

Tel: 01572 770000

Brands include Betty Barclay, Blue Willi’s, Hawick & Harley Knitwear, Harris Tweed and Pret a Porter. 29

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Christmas is almost upon us again, and that means it’s time to start thinking about shopping for our nearest and dearest! Vanessa Hollander has done some of the legwork for you, and has some wonderful ideas for fashionable gifts from our fabulous local boutiques. Photography: Elli Dean Vanessa’s Top Tips for Christmas Shopping

£20-£50 Armery by Mary Portas & Charnos, £21, Fords of Oakham

• Ask yourself this question : ‘Would I like to receive this gift?’ • Try not to ‘over think’ purchases – sometimes it’s the simple luxuries that make the nicest presents. • Rather than lots of little presents, consider just one higher priced item

Up to £20

Eribe Wool Gloves, £29, Cavells, Oakham

Wool Corsage, £15, Woosters, Oakham Joules Slipper Sock, £19.95, Fords of Oakham

Black Leather Gloves, £39, Baubles and Bangles, Oakham

Hultquist Earrings, £18, CoCo, Oakham

Avoca Ditsy Socks, £17.50, Cavells South Street, Oakham

Bangle, £20, Vanilla, Oakham

Rose Trim Scarf, £21, Baubles and Bangles, Oakham

Johnston’s Cashmere Gloves, £20, Attic, Oakham

Esprit Fur Bag, £40, Attic, Oakham Pantherella Cashmere Socks, £22.90, Linnet, Oakham



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£50+ Eribe Fair Isle Wool Scarf, £69, Cavells, Oakham

Leopard Print Travel Bag on Wheels, £92, Vanilla, Oakham

Ozoo Watch, £49.95, Vanilla, Oakham

Maria Carla Wallet, £35, CoCo, Oakham

Darling Pearl Embellished Cardigan, £69, Woosters, Oakham

Soft Leather Wrap Belt, £48, CoCo, Oakham

Mulberry iPhone Case, £65, Cavells, Oakham Emu Boots, £185, Attic, Oakham Ruby & Ed Velvet Slippers, £37.50, Cavells South Street, Oakham Spotted Merino & Cashmere Scarf, £47, Woosters, Oakham

Lime Green Leather Handbag, £90, Baubles and Bangles, Oakham

Hultquist Bracelet, £27.25, CoCo, Oakham

Stockists Fur Cuffs, £20.90, Linnet, Oakham

Attic, Oakham, 01572 759000, Baubles & Bangles, Oakham, 01572 724 177 Cavells, Oakham, 01572 770372, CoCo, Oakham, 01572 757646

Fords of Oakham, 01572 722654, Linnet, Oakham, 01572 770 000, Vanilla, Oakham, 01572 757577 Woosters, Oakham, 01572 723 697 RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH Living DECEMBER 2011

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IN THE SPOTLIGHT Firenze and its altogether extraordinary chef now offering cookery classes


wner and head Chef Lino left home, the Scuola Alberghiera in San Pellegrino - a catering school, at the tender age of 15 years with a mission to cook and a desire to see the world. His various positions over the years took him to Belgium, Paris, Hong Kong, Florence and then the UK. Working for Michelin rated chefs such as Paracucchi, Marchesi and Pinchiorri, Lino developed his passion and standards of excellence, but he also endeavours to keep his style of food approachable and real. Affairs of the heart took over when he met Sarah and decided to set up home life and a business in Leicestershire. Says Sarah, “I am biased, and I am kind of partial to Lino’s endearing Italian looks, but truly, my husband is one of the most under stated and modest chefs you are likely to come across. No over-inflated opinion of himself, Lino has simply a steady and solid conviction for his passion and pedigree in cooking.” Twelve years on Firenze flourishes and has sustained a reputation for brilliant and unique Italian food. With the enthusiasm of Max, JJ and Freddie, his erstwhile team, Lino continues to push the boundaries, reinventing the old classics with modern twists by embracing concepts and methods that are available by way of Paco jets, dehumidifiers and water baths. Over the years, Lino has nurtured and encouraged many young chefs and in 2012 he will be working with Jill Vickers at Bridge 67 cookery school where he will be sharing his experience and expertise. Look out for a series of classes exploring Italy’s great and varied culture of food and cooking whilst embracing the seasons and the regions. Firenze will be serving seriously good food throughout December, closed all day Sunday and Monday as usual, as well as closing 25th and 26th December and 1st January 2012. Boboli, buzzing with activity all day every day, serves coffee from 10am and food throughout the day until last orders at 9.30 pm, 7 days a week, closing only for 25th & 26th December and 1st January 2012. (See page 34). • For more information please contact Sarah, or Tel: 0116 2796260


For the perfect Christmas gift wh y not treat your sp ecial friends and family to a voucher to be us ed at either of these fa bulous restaurants or to a days cooking with Lin o Poli at Bridge 67?

Recipe Budino di Panettone al Cioccoalte, Panettone Chocolate pudding. Sarah Poli This is a Christmas recipe that has become a firm favourite at both Boboli and Firenze. It is our take on bread and butter pudding made Christmassy by using Panettone instead of bread. It is delicious and a real hit with our customers. Particularly useful for people who find themselves with a Panettone and don’t quite know how to use it. Ingredients For the custard • 150 g cooking chocolate, 75% cocoa • 425 ml double cream • 4 table spoons of Grappa • 110 g caster sugar • 75 g butter • 1 tea spoon of cinnamon • 3 large eggs For the pudding • 750 g panettone Lightly buttered oven proof dish, of about 6cm deep, 20 x25x cm Method • Begin by slicing the Panettone into

reasonably thin slices • Place a bowl over a pan of simmering water and place within the chocolate, cream, grappa, sugar, butter and cinnamon. • Keep the water only just simmering, and do not allow the bowl to touch the water. • Once the ingredients have melted and sugar dissolved, stir them well so that they all merge together. • Remove from the heat and set aside • In a second bowl, whisk the eggs, then pour the chocolate mixture over the eggs, folding the two mixtures together thoroughly, and whisk further. • Spoon a layer of the mixture into the oven proof dish, and then a layer of the Panettone, keep layering mixture and Panettone until finished. • Cling film and allow to cool before placing in the fridge for at least a few hours, but preferably over night, before baking. • Bake for about 30/40 mins at 180 degrees C, until crisp on the top, leave to stand for 10 minutes before serving • Ideal accompaniment is mascarpone, beaten with a little double cream, icing sugar and vanilla.


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The Fox and Hounds, Exton Christmas Party Menu Tue-Sat Lunch & Evenings until Fri 23 Dec. Menu From £13.95. Booking essential.


New Years Eve Back by popular demand, our exclusive ‘dress up, dine & dance’. Fabulous exclusive house party atmosphere, with wonderful food, live entertainment & treats. £65 pp

wine bar


en suite r o o m s

The Fox and Hounds, 19 The Green Exton, Rutland, LE15 8AP

01572 812403


wine bar



Good Honest Modern Italian Food NEW OPENING TIMES SEE WEBSITES FOR DETAILS Firenze 0116 279 6260 Boboli 0116 279 3303








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menus Abigail Richardson and Nicholas Rudd Jones explore what our local eateries are offering over the festive period this year

Rutland Baker’s Yard 6 Church Street, Oakham, LE15 6AA Oakham’s new and very popular wine bar, which is already receiving a lot of attention, with its chic interior and bistro style menu, will be offering a set Christmas menu from the 28th Nivember to the 23rd December. 2 courses for £17.50 or 3 courses for £19.95. Boxing Day lunch will be £35 for 3 courses from 12-2.30pm. Book in advance. New Year’s Eve will be a BBQ (bring your coats) in the courtyard for £50 which includes and outdoor selection of meats as well as an indoor buffet and desert for £50 pp, to include a glass of champagne at midnight. Barnsdale Hall Hotel Nr Oakham, Rutland, LE15 8AB Tel: 01572 757901 With a long standing reputation of delivery fun filled Christmas party nights priced at 34.50 for Friday and Saturday nights and includes a 3 course dinner and music from the resident DJ. 2011 also sees a themed ‘School Disco Night’ on Thursday 22nd December and Friday 23rd December at £25.00 per person. Also on offer is a Christmas Residential Package at £359 per person (children age 4 – 12 sharing parents room £180). Logon to www. for further details. (GANGSTER & MOLLS NEW YEAR’S EVE DINNER DANCE to include champagne and canapés from 7.00pm, followed by a themed 5 course dinner with table magician and music.) Lake Isle Hotel & Restaurant 16 High Street East, Uppingham, Rutland, LE15 9PZ Tel: 01572 822951 For high quality, beautifully presented food and one of the most extensive wine lists in the area along with exceptional service, head to The Lake Isle in Uppingham. The Christmas Fayre Menu at £18.50 for 3 courses is amazing value and available from 1-23 December, Monday to Saturday lunchtime. Also available at dinner for parties of 8 or more on Monday to Friday. Christmas Eve Dinner is an elegant affair of 4 courses plus coffee and chocolates at £38.50 pp. Logon to www.lakeisle. to see the menus.


Hambleton Hall Michelin star Oakham Rd, Hambleton Peninsula, LE15 8TH Tel: 01572 756991 Hambleton Hall is stunning at Christmas time. They have the most wonderful Christmas tree and decorations throughout the house and roaring log fires. Their Christmas menu is exceptional value for such a renowned eating establishment, for 6 – 60 guests. Canapés, 3 Course Dinner, followed by Coffee & home made Chocolates, all for £37.50 per person. No charge for private room hire. Christmas lunch and dinner are also available. All the menus can be found at Stapleford Park Hotel Stapleford, Nr. Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, LE14 2EF Tel: 01572 787000 Against a backdrop of roaring open fires and candlelit intimacy, groups from 8 to 180 people may enjoy festive private dining in the splendour of this Country House. Whether it is a personal or corporate festive celebration, an event specialist will be on hand to help you plan. From themed evenings to simple gatherings; from the table gifts to the music, your celebration can be tailored to make it totally unique. The famous teddy bears will be on the stairs to greet you to the house and once inside you will marvel at the stunning twenty five foot Christmas tree. Christmas party nights are from £40 per person as well as Festive dining for nonresidents – starting from £50 per person. Logon to: for more info. (New Year breaks also available starting from £375.00 per person.) The Blue Ball 6 Cedar Street, Braunston, Oakham, LE15 8QS Tel:01572 722135 The Blue Ball has recently become more family friendly with a young Diners Menu, an under 3s table toy box and over 3s activity sheet colouring, word search, fun facts etc. There are now potties, toilet trainer seats, kiddy steps, changing mat, wipes, nappy sacks on hand as well as high chairs. All just in time for Christmas celebrations. The pub is the perfect setting for an atmospheric, festive meal and the dining room can accommodate large parties. The Christmas

menu is priced at £24.95 per person and all party bookings must be pre-ordered with a £10 deposit per person. See it online at www. The Fox and Hounds 19 The Green, Exton, Rutland, LE15 8AP, Tel 01572 812403 A delightful, bustling, public house serving real ales, tasty, traditional English and Italian inspired foods. The Christmas Party Lunch Menu is available Tuesday - Saturday from Thursday 1st December until Friday 23rd December. Pre-orders essential. Exceptionally good value at £13.95 for any 2 courses (starter/ main or main/dessert) or 3 courses £16.95, including Christmas crackers. Coffee/tea and mince pies £2.50pp Christmas Party Dinner Menu is available in the evenings, Tuesday - Saturday from Thursday 1st December, until Friday 23rd December. All inclusive price of £21 for 3 courses including coffee, mince pies and Christmas crackers. Logon to to view menus. (New Year’s Eve - Dress up, dine and dance £65pp includes a glass of bubbly, gourmet dinner, live entertainment provided by Kings of Edam, charity raffle and dancing.) The Lord Nelson NEW 11 Market Place, Oakham, LE15 6DT Tel: 01572 868340 The Lord Nelson, at the corner of the Market Place in Oakham, opens its doors again on Monday December 12th.


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17/11/11 19:27:40 Throughout December there will also be a Festive Set Lunch menu from Monday – Saturday lunch times, 2 courses for £15.50: Traditional Roast Turkey and Christmas Pudding with Brandy Sauce. (NEW YEAR’S EVE DINNER & PARTY PACKAGE £69.50 per person includes food and live entertainment; accommodation also available). The Noel at Whitwell Main Street, Whitwell, Rutland LE15 8BW. Tel 01780 460347 Famous for its party room and atmosphere, the Noel’s festive party nights are priced at £25 a head and include a 3 course dinner with mulled wine and disco. Ring to book your party. The Olive Branch, Clipsham Michelin star Main St, Clipsham, LE15 7SH Tel: 01780 410355 The Olive Branch is a wonderful place at Christmas, a traditional village inn with Christmas trees and sparkling decorations, log fires and candlelit dining rooms. They have a selection of festive menus to suit every occasion, from a relaxing dinner party to a to a merry pub knees up. With rooms in Beech House across the road they can also accommodate guests who have too far to travel and it’s ideal for an exclusive ‘house party’. £35 a head. All the menus are up on the website at

You will be utterly amazed by the transformation – two floors of drinking and eating space lovingly restored and given immense charm and character in keeping with the age of the property. Every room has a feel of its own, replete with original features, antique and interesting objects jackdawed from auctions around the country, original wood and stone floors, and stunning Farrow & Ball wall colours. There’s even an Aga in one room, bet that’ll be popular! The room at the front on the ground floor will be devoted to Nelson paraphernalia. The pub is the brainchild of Mick Thurlby, and is modelled on the award-winning Tobie Norris in. “Our aim is to offer the same as the Tobie Norris in Oakham,” Mick told us. “Five real ales, good wines and informal but delicious food, including our signature pizzas.” The Marquess of Exeter 52 Main Street, Lyddington, nr Uppingham, Rutland LE15 9LT Tel: 01572 822477 Under the management of renowned local chef Brian Baker, the food here is truly fabulous. The restaurant and pub have a very contemporary feel yet also offers a warm and cosy atmosphere on these dark nights. Awarded an AA 4 Star Inn and Dinner Award Rating in 2009, a Mercury Business Great Food Award in 2011 and County Dining Pub of the Year, The Good Pub Guide 2012. The Festive Season Menu is priced at 2 courses for £23.30 or 3 courses for £29.50 and can be found on www.marquessexeter.

Market Harborough and Kibworth Firenze 9 Station Street, Kibworth Beauchamp, Leicestershire, LE8 0LN Tel: 0116 2796260 Firenze Christmas parties will be offered the Menu Mercato which is priced at £17.50 for two courses, £22.50 for three courses or £27.50 for four courses available for Lunch, Tuesday to Saturday and Dinner, Tuesday to Thursday for the month of December. New Year’s Eve will be Firenze at its best! A full on tasting menu of style and sophistication for £85.00 per person which includes a 6 course menu, Prosecco on arrival and Prosecco at midnight. The Boboli Christmas Party Menu is £20 pp for 3 courses including coffee. Open all day from 10am. The New Year’s Eve party includes a 3 course menu, with choices, and disco at £40.00 a head. Indian Zest 131 St. Mary’s Road, Market Harborough, LE16 7DT Tel: 01858 462752, Fancy the non traditional taste, head to Indian Zest for gourmet Indian food in contemporary surroundings. Party menus from £14.95. The Nevill Arms, Medbourne 12 Waterfall Way, Medbourne, Leicestershire, LE16 8EE. Tel: 01858 565288 The Nevill Arms, once the Old Stable Yard and Inn is set in the idyllic village of Medbourne.

Rebuilt in 1863 in a Tudor style, now a Grade II listed building, it has recently undergone sympathetic refitting whilst retaining its original character and features including the original large studded oak door, the oak beamed ceilings, the stone inglenook fireplace and leaded stone mullion windows. Their 3 course Christmas lunch menu is priced at £22.50 and the evening menu is £27.50 and a boxing day menu at a bargain price of £20 pp. £10 per person deposit required to confirm reservation (non refundable) and a pre order one week prior to party date. Please call to confirm booking date served until 24th December

Further afield

The George Hotel 71 High St, St Martin’s, Stamford, PE9 2LB Tel: 01780 750750 The George Hotel is the ultimate place for Christmas, with its huge log fire and wonderful Christmas decorations. Christmas menus can be found on their website at Especially notable is their Christmas Eve Menu (£65, including Lobster Thermidor), Christmas Day (£128); and their festive menu, available for groups of 10 or more and served in a private room full of character and Christmas cheer. Assiette 8-9 St Paul’s St, Stamford, PE9 2BE Tel: 01780 489071 www.assietterestaurant. Twitter: @AssietteRstrant Head chef and owner Dameon Clarke cooks with panache and inventiveness, supported by a strong wine list and agreeable ambience. Assiette offers 2 Christmas menus; Menu A at £25 for 2 courses or £30 for 3, which has a choice of four dishes for each course, and everything has a ‘twist of interest’. There is also a Christmas Day lunch menu, as well as a Boxing Day menu and a New Year’s Eve degustation menu. Oundle Mill NEW CHEF Barnwell Rd, Oundle, PE8 5PB Tel: 01832 272621 Oundle Mill, Restaurant of the Year at the 2010/11 Northamptonshire Food & Drink Awards. has recently appointed a new head chef, Gavin Austin, to further develop the Mill’s fabulous food reputation. Gavin brings a wealth of food experience with him. He began his career at The Hoste Arms in Burnham Market, before progressing to London where he worked at the Michelin-starred Chez Nico, L’Escargot and the opening of the St Pancras Grand. Affordability is key and the Christmas Party Menu (which you can find on the website) looks excellent value at £29.50 per person for 3 courses (book in advance). I like the sound of every course, but especially the dessert choice: “Warm plum pudding and brandy cream”, “Terrine of bitter chocolate with yoghurt sorbet” or “Vanilla crème brulee.” There is also A Christmas Day dinner for £70. Special Offer: Dine for 1/2 price on Mondays in December and January and try out the mew menu.


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17/11/11 19:28:01

Bespoke Catering... For advice and further information please contact M 07778 227 734 E



Real Indian & Nepalese Cuisine... ...served with style & panache! Traditional classic favourites and original new dishes created by our Executive Chef, Ram Chadra Banjade • Every Tuesday 3 course meal £9.95 • 2 Course Lunch Special £5.95 • Every Thursday Nepalese Food Menu Available • Free Home Delivery within 5 miles 15% Discount on Collected Orders • Free Car Park to the rear of Restaurant • Book for Christmas Parties, Private Functions, Weddings, Receptions, Business Meetings, Presentations, Outside Catering

01858 462752 131 St Marys Road, Market Harborough, Leics. LE16 7DT 36

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Venison Local wild or free-range deer makes a taste-packed and healthy winter treat. By Sean Hope, head chef at the Olive Branch, Clipsham


Ven is on Ca ss erole w it h C in n a m on

Serves 4 • 2kg diced venison (ha unch) • 1 star anise, half a cinnam on stick • 3 cloves garlic • 2 crushed juniper berries • 2 large carrots (peeled & diced) • 170g button mushroom s • 113g baby shallots, pee led • 50g plain flour • half a bottle red wine • 1 measure of port • 1 litre beef stock • Salt and pepper • 1 punnet blackberries


he UK venison season runs from September to February, so now is the perfect time to cook with this tasty, healthy meat. My preferred venison meat is from the fallow buck – a young male deer of around two years old whose antlers have not yet branched. The fallow buck might be pricier, but to my mind it is tastier. Wild deer are common in the woodland areas of Rutland and are also farmed on a free-range basis by several local producers, including Fen Farm Venison near Sleaford and Bouverie Lodge in Nether Broughton, Melton Mowbray. Venison has a flavour reminiscent of beef, but is richer and can have a gamey note. It tends to have a finer texture and is far leaner than comparable cuts of beef. Venison’s health qualities don’t stop there – it has higher iron levels than any other red meat, is packed with Omega 3 and is lower in fat than a skinned breast of chicken. Forget Bambi, venison makes a fantastic December ingredient! This issue I’ve included a slower, more involved recipe than usual – it’s a great winter dish and worth taking time over in the kitchen.

1: In a large hot pan, sea l the venison for 5-10 minutes or unt il golden brown. Once sealed, strain off exc ess fat and juices and dust the meat with flour. 2: Into another large hot pan put the shallots, carrots, mu shrooms, star anise, cinnamon stic k, cloves and crushed juniper. Ro ast for about 10 minutes until the veg etables are golden brown and evenly coloured. Add the port and wine and simmer until the liquid has reduce d by half. 3: Next, add the veniso n and then cover with beef stock. Coo k on a gentle heat for 3-4 hours, skimm ing off any impurities that may rise to the surface. 4: When the venison is tender and the sauce is concentrated , add blackberries and season ing.

Sean’s kitchen essentials This month it’s the humble milk frother! Great for giving coffee or hot chocolate a luxurious, foamy top but also excellent for whizzing up milk or cream before adding to soups. Doing this takes soup presentation to another level.

Here are some flavour combinations to try with venison at home. Wild mushrooms Anise Juniper Hedgerow fruit: blackberries, sloes and blackcurrants


Dark bitter chocolate Pears Bacon Thyme Chestnuts


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Sean’s seasonal must-buys for December What Sean will be cooking with at the Olive Branch, Clipsham Veg – Jerusalem artichokes, swede, turnip Fish – skate, squid and red mullet Meat – venison, woodcock, beef Fruit – pears, cranberries, citrus fruit DECEMBER 2011 RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH LIVING


17/11/11 19:30:45

Ta k e

t he

s t r e s s

o u t


C h r i s t m a s



Christmas & New Year Order Form Get organised this Christmas and pre-order your favourites such as smoked salmon, smoked duck, a baby Stilton or whole Epoisse, Mini Hams and succulent tarts, or even oysters fresh from the Suffolk coast!

Christmas Hampers Choose from our selection of hampers containing some of our most popular products and luxury extras from as little as £19.95, or select products for your own personalised hamper.

Otters Gift Voucher Give someone the fun of choosing their own delicious favourites this Christmas.

Happy Christmas to all our customers!


3a Mill Street, Oakham, Rutland LE15 6EA Tel: 01572 756481 Email:

(formally Nick’s Restaurant)

ge 1 Not So L ar h it pizza w da 2 toppings an beer pint of selected

for just £9.95 -7pm Mon-Sat 6pm

Opening December 2011 We have 5 real ales (including White Hart and Rupert’s Wardog), a selection of continental lagers and an expansive wine list that we import ourselves from around the world. Our speciality is stone baked, handmade pizzas with a wide choice of toppings, anything from the traditional to the slightly quirky! We also have a range of other dishes that are sure to delight your taste buds.

Market Place, Oakham, LE15 6DT t. 01572 868340

2 Not So La pizzas, 2 to rge ppings and a bott le of white, red or rosé hous e wine


Mon-Sat 6p



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KNOW YOUR ABCs An ABC of Christmas Store Cupboard Luxuries for the Festive Season with Sarah Lyon own!’ Ben Vear is a De Montfort University student, and 4th generation Master ice cream maker and author of ‘Make Your Own Organic Ice Cream’ (Spring Hill, RRP £14.99). He insists on sourcing the finest ingredients from the local community, something he inherited from his grandfather. Buy from The University Bookshop, Amazon, WH Smith or on Ben’s website, Arrabiata, sweet fresh tomatoes blended with hot peppers give this sauce a spicy edge. Great with any plain pasta, or with fish or chicken. Hambleton Bakery fresh pasta and pasta sauces make a great ‘stand-by’ meal. - Antipasti Olives, Anchovy fillets in oil and Aromatic Thai Pork Steaks at Farndon Fields Farm Shop, Market Harborough, LE16 9NP – - Artisan Breads at Hambleton Bakery. The Sprouted Grain Bread is Slow Food with a great taste and easy to digest healthy bread. Truly fabulous in every way! Can’t help to impress the guests with this one. Tel: 01572 812995 - Almonds, cherries and linseeds, Toast for Cheese made by The Fine Cheese Co. Leo from Otters in Oakham says that these are a best seller and particularly delicious eaten with a rich blue cheese.

- Bay Tree Christmas Syrup, “We tried this out last year by adding it to warm cider and putting it in a thermos flask for a dog walk in the snow. It was the best dog walk ever,” says Jenny at The Fine Food Store, Stamford.

CHEESE BOARD Cheesy Bite from Otters in Oakham; for pre-order deadlines. something very different and a great starter - Caramelised Hazelnut hot chocolate, Coppa for four which is simple and unusual Salami, Caramelised Apple Chutney and Leo at Otters Smokehouse & Deli enthuses on - Chocolate orange & Cinnamon vinegar at the Vacherin Mont d’Or (500g) as this month’s Farndon Fields Farm Shop, Market Harborough cheese. Set oven to 200C/gas mark 6 – Tel: 01858 464838 Make a few incisions in the top of rind and - Cookie Box Traditional Christmas Puddings insert a clove of garlic in each. and Cinnamon & Raisin Christmas cookies. Now for the wine; Take a sharp knife Puddings nut free and gluten free and create an incision in the top available. Find on Oakham Farmer’s Magpie of the Vacherin rind (which is Market and at Brocklebys Farm away items n edible) or remove a portion of Shop. Tel: Becky Andrews 07921 that can be froze t ou t the rind and replace it before 067334 gh ou br d an en cooking. - Chocolate truffles, Hedgerow of the freezer wh d Now pour a wee dram of dry - Brockleby’s, winners Spirits Sloe Gin dark Chocolate needed. Breads an e inc m white wine in the incision and at the Organic Food Truffl es made by e ad em m ho replace top of rind. Awards 2011 for their pies, Brockleby’s Bake Vacherin (remove outside Chicken & Ham Pie. Source from Northfield Farm Shop, Pies wrapping) in its box in the oven for Many more pie varieties Cold Overton, Rutland or online www. approximately 15 minutes when the to choose from at cheese becomes lovely and runny and is great Brockleby’s Farm Shop, eaten with crusty sourdough bread., CLEVER CLOGGS; THINKING AHEAD Market Harbourough Gain confidence in the Culinary Classroom by - Charcuterie. Fantastic with thinly Farmer’s Market. booking into Stamford Cookery School for a Plan sliced parma ham, prosciutoo, - Bate’s Butcher and Deli pre-Christmas lesson. Canapes for the Festive ahead and buy in support of Napoli salami, parmesan coated specialty; Beef en Croute with Season with Thierry, December 2, 6-9pm, £35. our local commun salami (Leo’s most popular Brixworth Pate. Great dinner For more courses and information Tel: 01780 ity; farm shops, deli’s charcuterie at the moment) party choice. 4 Church St, 752172, , farmers markets and green peppercorn Market Harborough, Tel: • Pre-order festive food well ahead of time to Farmer’s Market coated salami Otters, 3a Mill 01858 462400 avoid disappointment, www.northfieldfarm. s: Oakham – Saturday, Dec 17 Street, Oakham, Tel: 01572 - Belvoir cordials, Mulled com,, www. ; Market Harborough – Th 756481, Winter Punch served, www.amphora-wines. urs, Dec 8th; Stamford – - Christmas Puddings and ‘warmed up’ makes for a ‘safe, roast Mince Pies, alcohol free drink’ this season. bird and more), Dec 9, Dec 23 - Clementine Tarts, Christmas The Fine Food Store, 37 St Mary’s • Shop on line for a wonderful selection of muffins and Street, Stamford. Christmas food and drink. Home deliveries - Christmas Shortbread, Morello Cherry Fruit with Riverford on Sacrewell Farm Ltd, & Almond Tarts from Hambleton Bakery shops BOOK OF RECIPES around our region. Check out the website www. – Christmas Pudding Ice Cream. ‘Make your Tel: 01780 789700 RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH LIVING DECEMBER 2011

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Situated in the centre of historic Oundle, Oundle Travel is the area’s leading independent travel agent…. Director Paula Cockcroft’s career in the travel industry spans 30 years. Following a career with British Airways and Thomas Cook, Paula joined the former Kitts Travel in Oundle 16 years ago and purchased the business in 2006. “During this time I have seen the business go from strength to strength and our customer loyalty is second to none. I believe that as a truly independent agency we are able to offer honest and unbiased advice based on personal recommendations together with our award winning selection of individual brochures. It is so important to speak to someone experienced who will look after you from the minute you make your travel arrangements until you return home”. As a fully ABTA bonded travel agent, Oundle Travel offer full financial protection of client’s money; they also understand how daunting it can be trying to decide where to venture on holiday. Whether it’s your dream honeymoon, a trip to Australia, the Caribbean or the Indian Ocean or your next family holiday Oundle Travel can help. The agency have considerable experience with long haul holidays and specialise in Tailor Made itineraries to South Africa, India, South America, Canada and New Zealand. If you want to avoid the uncertainty of not knowing how good your next holiday will be then visit Oundle Travel where they really do have the ability and expertise to make your next holiday experience wonderful. Contact: Oundle Travel Limited, Market Place, Oundle, PE8 4EA. Tel: 01832 273600,

SKI - ALL INCLUSIVE ON THE INCREASE With the current economic climate affecting many it's of no surprise that more and more skiers are attempting to budget and prepay in the UK rather than getting caught out in resort. Where once budget skiers opted for self catering these days many have realised that often this can be a false economy with daily trips to the village supermarket costing more than the average weekly household shopping run. "All inclusive" and "Club" holidays can conjure images of raucous package trips and "pile 'em high and sell 'em cheap" holidays but this is far from the truth with this new breed of ski trip. If nothing else, the all inclusive holiday maximises time on the slopes and minimises the complexities of organising your family’s requirements. Just think that within one price and under one roof you will have flights, transfers, accommodation, breakfast, lunches, evening meals, speciality restaurants, unlimited bar snacks, unlimited alcoholic drinks, unlimited soft drinks, child care, ski tuition, ski guiding (including off-piste), spa facilities, entertainment, taxes, and tips. Prices can start from as little as £850.00 pp and when you consider that your average lift pass is now £200.00 pp, tuition at £150.00 pp, childcare at £180.00 pp, lunches will total £100.00 pp, bar bills can reach £130.00 (and more!), then it makes sense to prebudget and go all-inclusive. A choice of resorts from traditional Swiss villages such as Wengen and St Moritz, to the British mainstays of Val d'Isere and Meribel, across to the purpose built ski out family destinations of Valmorel and Les Arcs are all on offer. Properties range from 3 star to 5 star luxury but one thing is for sure, whichever, option you choose the cuisine, service, and experience will be of exceptional quality. Contact: Nick Edwards, Snow Finders, Tel: 01858 466888

MAGICAL CHRISTMAS DAY OUT AT WARWICK CASTLE Warwick Castle has created a Festive retreat to celebrate Christmas. Every day from 3rd December see the characters of Christmas past come alive with a selection of tours from bygone eras. Witness the pagan and mediaeval winter solstice celebrations in Kingmaker or join in the Christmas celebrations of Victorian High Society in Secrets & Scandals. Santa will again be taking residence in the Royal State Rooms with his team of mischievous elves ready to keep the children entertained with his tales of the preparations for Christmas on the 10th, 11th, 17th – 24th December. And, as the current series of Merlin reaches its climax, the castle’s Merlin Dragon Tower will offer unrivalled magic and a brush with the great dragon from Camelot. Also see magical and mythical birds soar through the sky with a winter backdrop. For little girls take a trip to The Princess Tower to make a wish at the wishing tree and watch the preparations for a Winter Royal Wedding, or for the brave a trip to the Dungeon is a must. Call Tel: 01926 406660 or visit the website for more information

40 DECEMBER 2011

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17/11/11 19:33:05

News from Oundle Mill Food photography by David Corfield -

Discover great food at Oundle Mill

Oundle Mill, since its re-furbishment four years ago, has established itself as one of the best places to eat in the region, combining great food with a unique ambience created by its lovely setting by the River Nene, the historic fabric of the mill and the stunning ‘rustic chic’ interior. And it was voted Restaurant of the Year at the 2010/11 Northamptonshire Food & Drink Awards.

New Head Chef

To continue along its track of culinary success, Oundle Mill has recently appointed a new head chef, Gavin Austin, to further develop the Mill’s fabulous food reputation. Gavin brings a wealth of food experience with him. He began his career at The Hoste Arms in Burnham Market, before progressing to London where he worked at the Michelin-starred Chez Nico, L’Escargot and the opening of the St Pancras Grand.

The new style of cooking How would Gavin describe his style of cooking? “Simple things done really well using locally sourced great quality ingredients. I am very passionate about food and use many different cooking techniques, but I am a great believer in simplicity and the end result being delicious and ‘unfussy’ – I don’t try and use too many ingredients in one dish. I am not interested in using a cooking technique just for its effect, but rather for its potential to add something significant to the dish.” Gavin has worked both in a fine dining and gastro-pub environment. Which does he prefer? “I like elements of both; in the new menu I combine elements of both gastro- pub classics and fine dining, but with an overall emphasis on deliciousness and informality.”

confit root vegetables, with Cabernet Sauvignon sauce; or Steamed plaice, herb spaetzle, North Atlantic prawns with lemongrass nâge. Sunday lunch menu. Great starters, classic roasts and truly indulgent desserts - 2 Courses £20.50, 3 Courses £25.50 As well as the daily menu for lunch and dinner there is now also a Bar Menu for ‘quick bites’, available at lunchtime. • Find the menus in full at There is a children’s menu too.

Dine for ½ price on Mondays in December and January. A great chance to try out the new menu. This offer is available throughout December 2011 and January 2012, exc. Dec 26th.

Christmas and New Year’s Eve The atmosphere at the Mill over the festive season is a delight with a stylish yet relaxed and fun Christmas party atmosphere. The quality of cooking and service means that these special occasion meals are a real experience. Christmas parties, 3 courses £29.50 Christmas Day lunch, four choices for each course, £70 New Year’s Eve. The evening kicks off with sparkling wine and nibbles. Then enjoy a menu full of exquisite flavours and indulgent tastes, dancing to a live band and of course a champagne toast to welcome in the New Year. £90. All the menus can be looked at in detail online at www.oundlemill.

New Menus

The new menus are designed so that there is something for every occasion and mood, from the more adventurous to the tried and trusted favourites. Affordability is also key - a meal for two will cost no more than in a good local pub, but uses top quality, locally-sourced ingredients cooked by a very talented team. Starters range from classic favourites e.g. North Atlantic prawns with cocktail sauce or Brancaster mussels with cider and parsley-fried bread – to more adventurous selections e.g. Tempura black pudding, hen’s egg, crisp shallots, bacon, devilled sauce; or Soused and grilled mackerel, with apple, ginger and micro coriander. Mains include Seven Wells rib eye steak and Fish & Chips with mushy peas, lemon, tartare sauce; but also Denham Estate venison, turnip purée,

For more information, or to book: Oundle Mill, Barnwell Road, Oundle, Northamptonshire, PE8 5PB Tel: (01832) 272621

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For over 30 years Hambleton Hall has been one of the region’s favourite Michelin starred fine dining destinations.

Christmas & Winter Parties 2011 Hambleton Hall provides a perfect setting for Christmas & Winter Parties for 6 - 60 guests, November to December

Canapés, 3 Course Dinner Coffee & homemade Chocolates

£37.50 per person No charge for private room hire. At the end of the evening why not stay the night. Our bedrooms are from £245.00 per night, based on 2 people sharing one of our standard bedrooms, this includes full Hambleton breakfast & vat.

Menu Tian of Smoked Salmon & Caviar *** Free Range Turkey cooked in salt crust pastry with traditional accompaniments *** Prune & Armagnac Soufflé *** Coffee & homemade Chocolates All menus are subject to a discretionary service charge of 12.5% Excluding the Christmas, New Year period. Subject to availability. For larger parties, hotel accommodation may be required.

Aaron Patterson, head chef, specialises in top seasonal local ingredients to create modern British cuisine, with an award winning wine list full of delicious bottles. For more details about our Special Breaks and Events please visit our website

hambleton, oakham, Rutland, le15 8th tel: 01572 756991 FaX: 01572 724721 email: Web:

The Noel @ Whitwell

A fabulous place to celebrate Christmas...

Join us at The Noel for a festive Christmas Eve. A la Carte menu from 6.30pm to 9pm Main Street, Whitwell, Rutland, LE15 8BW T: 01780 460347 - E: -

Kev & Kristy give a warm welcome & a fun, friendly atmosphere


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What’s On

Christmas at Kelmarsh… Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 December, 10am to 4pm EVENT: Christmas Shopping Weekend

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

Friday 2 December – 14 January, 7.30pm, matinees 2.15pm THEATRE: 42nd Street

Saturday 3 and Sunday 4 December, 10am to 5pm EXHIBITION: Art in Lyddington

42nd Street is the inspiring story of small town girl Peggy Sawyer and her meteoric rise from chorus line hoofer to Broadway star. Packed with showstopping numbers, this show is a celebration of toe-tapping, foot-stomping, deliciously uplifting razzmatazz not to be missed. Curve Theatre, Leicester Tickets from £13 Tel: 0116 242 3595

There will be a wide selection of paintings, sculptures, ceramics, glass and other art works from artists from Rutland, from local art societies and invited well known artists with national and international reputations. All work will be for sale - a great opportunity to purchase a unique gift or simply treat yourself. St Andrew’s Parish Church The preview evening starts at 6:30 p.m. on Friday 2 December with tickets priced £7.50 Tel: 01572 822210 Admission to the exhibition is free but donations welcome as the exhibition includes a memorial to Pat Bealby and her chosen charities (Cancer Research UK, St Andrew’s Church and Art in Lyddington).

High quality gifts and luxury treats for the home and garden, cookery demonstrations, gifts, festive food and drink, music and a Santa’s Grotto. On Friday 9 December, a preview evening will take place in support of the Air Ambulance and Macmillan Cancer Support. Guests will receive a glass of bubbly and seasonal canapés plus a chance to shop before the event opens to the public. Tickets are £7.50 Tel: 01604 838800

Monday 12 and Tuesday 13 December, 10am to 1pm WORKSHOP: Make your own Christmas Table Decoration Participants will use foliage from the grounds of the listed building and an abundance of baubles and ribbons to create a wonderful centre piece. The price includes a mini guided tour, mince pies, mulled wine and homemade refreshments. £40 inclusive of all materials. Booking essential Tel: 01604 686543 Both events take place at Kelmarsh Hall, Northamptonshire


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Saturday 3 December, 6pm for 6.30pm start EVENT: Ashley Film Night Featuring ‘Nativity’ – the story of two schools preparing for a Christmas nativity play. Ashley Village Hall Tickets £5/£3 Tel: 01858 565410

Monday 4 December, 7.30pm EVENT: The Rutland NSPCC Carol Concert This well loved concert features readings by Lars Tharp from Antiques Roadshow, Mary Berry from the Great British Bake Off and former England and British Lions rugby star Peter Wheeler amongst others. All Saints Church, Oakham Tickets £12 from Gates Nursery, Don Paddy’s Uppingham, and Buy the Book in Oakham.

Tuesday 6 December, 10.30am to 4pm WATERCOLOUR WORKSHOP: ‘Wintry Watercolours’ Detailed demonstrations by Sandra Peck combine with a beautiful setting and a buffet lunch to make a most enjoyable day. Learn techniques perfect for making your own Christmas cards. All levels of ability welcome – beginners to more experienced artists. £67 per person including lunch Tel: 01572 813200

Friday 9 December, 7pm EVENT: Christmas Concert The Clarion Young Singers join the Rutland Concert Band for an uplifting evening of music to celebrate the festive season with half the proceeds to the NB Foundation which aims to educate and improve lives through music. Oakham Museum Tickets £6 from Music & More in Oakham

Monday 12 December, 5pm to 9pm SHOPPING EVENT: Oakham Late Night Shopping Local businesses and retailers get into the festive spirit and open late with special offers and tempting treats galore. Shoppers will also enjoy a fun fair, games, stalls, a farmers market and a Christmas craft fair in the Victoria Hall. Father Christmas will be in his grotto within Oakham Castle and there will be live music and carol singing. Sporting stars from Leicester Tigers and Nottingham Forest Football Club will be providing sporting activities – lots of fun for all the family and the chance to finish your Christmas shopping.

Next month don’t miss....

Saturday 7 to Saturday 21 January 2012 EXHIBITION: The School Prints - Vintage Lithographs from the 1940s This collection of stunning modern art wartime lithographs have only recently been discovered after laying dormant for decades. The story behind the collection is as spellbinding as the prints themselves. Towards the end of WWII, a young newly-wed British couple Brenda and Derek Rawnsley, dreamed up a plan to bring contemporary art to impoverished schools throughout Britain, giving children the opportunity to fall in love with art. Their first run included commissions for exclusive lithographic prints by iconic British artists such as John Nash, Kenneth Rowntree, Henry Moore and LS Lowry. The prints were then sold cheaply to schools. Sadly, Derek was killed in the war, but Brenda continued the series with a second, quite audacious plan of securing exclusive artworks from European masters such as Dufy, Matisse and Picasso. Take this unique opportunity to view all these prints in one setting before they are dispersed once more. All the prints can now be viewed online at Goldmark Gallery, Uppingham Admission is free, more information at

Friday 16 December, 7.30pm EVENT: Christmas concert Uppingham Choral Society will perform ‘Rejoice in the Lamb’ by Benjamin Britten, ‘Welcome to all the Pleasures’ by Henry Purcell and a selection of English Romantic Part Songs plus favourite Christmas carols with congregation participation. Mince pies, wine and soft drinks will be available. Uppingham Parish Church Tickets £8 from any committee member or on the door.



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Alan Oliver’s Exhibition of Rutland Paintings At 10 Stamford Road, Oakham Saturday 3rd & Sunday 4th Dec. 10am to 4pm daily

Christmas Shopping at Hambleton Bakery From the 1st of December Hambleton Bakery

Also exhibiting at Art in Lyddington on the same weekend. 10am to 5pm daily

will be baking their Christmas goodies as well as their traditional breads:

Christmas Puddings, Mince Pices, Rich Rum & Truffle Tort, Clementine Tarts, Cranberry & White Chocolate Cookies, Christmas Stuffing, Shortbread, Brownies

Traditional Restoration

Deadline for Christmas orders Saturday 17th December 2011

Timber Renovation Specialists Old sash & casement windows, exterior doors & joinery

Window Repair

Why replace your timber windows when you can restore? Traditional Restoration offers a cost-saving alternative to window replacement. Also: • Repairs and renovations • Overhaul and draught proofing • Reglazing and reputtying

Exton Bakery & Shop Cottesmore Road, Exton, Oakham, Rutland LE15 8AN


Tel: 01572 812995


Exterior joinery repair

For a free, no obligation estimate please call James on:

01572 720524 or 07841 527855



Stamford Shop

Oakham Shop

1 Ironmonger Street, Lincs, PE9 1PL Tel: 01780 754327

Gaol Street Rutland, LE15 6AL Tel: 01572 757541

     

  

  

        

 

  

 


                       


  


 

  

 



• RL December ADS.indd 45

17/11/11 11:09:34


4 cylinders good, 2 cylinders better! Fiat 500 Twin Air road test by Chris Sturgess, Chairman of Sturgess Motor Group


ertain car manufacturers have become synonymous for various aspects of automotive form and function. Examples are Volvo for pioneering vehicle safety systems, Jaguar for supreme wood and leather interiors and Alfa Romeo for emotional design. One lesser known fact is Fiat are incredibly forward thinking in engine design. One of Fiats’ biggest successes was the twin cam engine, available in a number of sizes that had a production life of over 40 years, and was very well respected in motor sport circles. They also went on to revolutionise diesel engine design with common-rail applications in various Fiat cars and common rail is now common place. So when Fiat announce a twin cylinder engine, we should stifle the smirks and take note as it will be a serious piece of engineering which will have the ability to make a very significant impact on the motoring world.


Having spent a weekend recently with a Fiat 500 Twinair, I defy anyone not to be bowled over by this superb car. The 500, launched in 2008, is now a frequent sight on our roads offering a stylishly retro design with superb build quality. A number of 4-cylinder engines are available but it is the Twinair that is proving very popular with people who are new to the 500 and also repeat 500 buyers. The engine has a muted but likeable buzz about it that lets you know that this is something a bit different and very special. Relaxed driving can be had by deploying the “Eco” button. This makes the throttle response more relaxed and ultimately aids fuel economy. If, however, a quick cross country blast is your desire, then switching off the “eco” function brings a new character to the car. Ride comfort and damping is well controlled and handling is precise and nimble. The gear change is slick and all the dashboard controls

fall easily to hand. The single dashboard pod houses speedo, rev counter, fuel and coolant gauges as well as the digital clock and radio information. Small outside does not mean minimising on safety features. The 500 Twinair comes with driver and passenger airbags, side airbags, window and knee airbags. Standard equipment also includes stop/start technology, ABS, manual air conditioning, height adjustable steering wheel, radio with MP3 and CD and much more. The 500 Twinair also comes with no road tax to pay, is exempt from the London Congestion Charge and has the lowest CO2 emission output of any petrol engine in the world. So no 500 Twinair owner should be shy about what they have under the bonnet. In fact they should be proud of the fact that they have chosen one of the cleverest cars to hit the roads in recent years.


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17/11/11 19:36:17


Fiat, the car brand with the lowest average CO2 emissions in Europe†. Fiat 500 TwinAir, the lowest CO2 emission petrol car engine in the world*. Fuel consumption for Fiat 500 TwinAir: mpg (l/100km) and CO2 emissions: Urban 57.6 (4.9) Extra Urban 76.3 (3.7) Combined 68.9 (4.1). CO2 emissions 95 g/km. ▲Under current DVLA regulations there is no charge for vehicle excise duty in the first year of registration and every subsequent year. Vehicle Excise Duty rates are reviewed annually by the government and are subject to change. †Source: JATO Dynamics. Based on Volume-weighted average CO2 emissions (g/km) of the best selling brands in Europe, year 2010. *According to NEDC standard.


• RL December ADS.indd 47

17/11/11 11:11:09

MARSHALL VOLVO OUTSTANDING SERVICE AS STANDARD. Our highly trained and skilled team looks forward to welcoming you to our state of the art dealership, where we will be on hand to look after your every need. All our cars are handled with the utmost care and attention as we pride ourselves on offering the best deals on the latest range of New Volvo and piece of mind on quality approved used vehicles. From the new Volvo range, to Approved used vehicles right through to service and repairs, visit Marshall Volvo and expect nothing less than a first class service as standard.


Volvo. For life.



Situated in Peterborough, our dealership is equipped to deal with all your Jaguar needs. From the exciting new Jaguar range featuring groundbreaking technology and industry firsts, to Approved used vehicles maintained to the standards set by the engineers who built them. Enjoy all the expertise and knowledge of our Jaguar Academy trained technicians and with a range of exhilarating accessories to enhance the feeling of owning a Jaguar, make sure that you visit Marshall Jaguar Peterborough. MARSHALL JAGUAR PETERBOROUGH 7 Mallory Road, Boongate, Peterborough PE1 5AU 0844 334 0635



• RL December ADS.indd 48

17/11/11 11:11:25


STRENGTH IN NUMBERS Marshall Volvo is refreshingly free of pushy salesmen and instead welcomes a more ‘lifestyle’ approach to buying a car. Words and pics: David Corfield


ar manufacturers are obsessed with numbers. If they’re not emblazoned on the boot, they’re churned out in press releases; the smaller the number the more environmentally friendly the car. The bigger the digit, the quicker you’re likely to lose your license. Sales patter thus: “Zero emissions, 1000bhp and you can go from 0-60 in two seconds, sir.” You get the picture… Fortunately, with a Volvo, there is no such flannel or persuasive trollocks to boggle the brain. And what you get at Marshall Volvo, one of the marque’s biggest UK dealerships with an investment of £9million into very impressive premises (numbers again, sorry) is nothing short of miraculous. I met up with Dealer Principal Daniel Cooper to learn more about one of the safest brands on our roads. Daniel came from the Marshall’s Jaguar dealership next door and looks after both the Cambridge and Peterborough Volvo businesses. That’s quite a big patch, but it’s a job he relishes chiefly because he genuinely believes in the brand. “I’ve got a great team of people working with me and together we all share the brand love,” he enthuses. “We punch well above our weight in what is a very competitive area for car manufacturers. In terms of selling Volvos, Peterborough is one of our best areas, but it’s also a hard one chiefly because of the other brands that we compete against.” Daniel has an advantage though, because he’s a local lad and makes every effort to get to know and understand his customer. “I’ve been with Marshall for 20 years now, the majority of that time based here in Peterborough, so I know the place well and especially the kind of cars that appeal to the

families in the area. We have a great range of cars and have sought to bring that lifestyle message Volvo is famous for right here into the dealership.” Working with the Tallington Lakes outdoor centre, Daniel can sell you a mountain bike, a canoe, a jetski or even a snowboard to further compliment your active life. Personally, I’d settle for a seatwarmer… “Volvo customers of old were largely from the agricultural world (think affluent, nononsense farmers) but now we are seeing a definite shift towards professional customers, who perhaps are seeking an alternative to an Audi. We are always looking to move forward and focus on what’s new and reflective of our customer’s lifestyle. If we’d stuck with our customers of old we wouldn’t have any left – they’d all be dead!” Daniel’s refreshingly honest approach is engaging. “We have some amazing cars now in our line up and my business sales manager Ross Johnson is offering some great deals with fleet customers, sole traders and SMEs too. We have a car for everyone here and I’m determined to get the Volvo message out across the fens and get people in to have a look at what we can offer.” Volvo recently took Daniel, along with a select group of Dealer Principals, to its factory in Sweden to sample some of its future models. “I was very privileged to see a new 5-door family car, still in its glass-fibre mock up state, emerge from the factory and it filled me with enthusiasm for the future. I cannot wait to get that car in the showroom next year as I know it will really excite my customers.” There’s clearly a lot to be passionate about at Marshall and along with expansion plans or

the business side (the dealership has a 26 bay workshop out the back for fleet customers) Daniel is very focused on the future, and wants you to be a part of it with him!


Marshall Volvo, Volvo House, Mallory Road, Boongate, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire PE1 5AU, Tel: 0844 243 4984


The Volvo company was started in 1927 as a child company to the Swedish ball-bearing manufacturer Svenska Kullagerfabriken AB. It was originally intended to make ball-bearings, but switched to producing vehicles in April of the same year. In 1970, Volvo bought a Dutch car company called DAF so that they could also produce small cars in the Netherlands as well as continue exporting vehicles to the United States. In the early 1990s, Volvo split into two different companies called Volvo Group, which makes large commercial vehicles, and Volvo Cars, which makes smaller passenger vehicles. Volvo Cars was purchased by Ford Motors in 1998. Most of the models built by Volvo Cars from 2000 to 2006 have been either compact four-doors with hatchbacks, such as the C30 and S40, or modified hybrid designs that have the seating capacity of a station wagon or SUV but are still smaller than normal, such as the V50. The Volvo symbol is an ancient chemistry sign for iron.


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17/11/11 19:37:28

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17/11/11 11:12:08


A Tale of Two Museums Interactive. All-weather. Educational. Three words that sum up a fascinating trip to two of Leicester’s most popular museums: the Abbey Pumping Station and the National Space Centre. Between them these museums cover over two hundred years of history, science and technology from the early days of the industrial revolution through to space exploration of today. Visiting them together couldn’t be easier since they are situated only metres apart, as Rachel Fairweather and family discovered


n our return to the Space Centre we discovered that the queue had reduced hugely and we were soon owners of day passes that upgraded automatically to free annual passes. On realizing that any return visit we might make would cost nothing, we immediately relaxed and were able to enjoy a more leisurely tour of the museum. By now we were extremely hungry so our first port of call was Boosters café. Situated near the entrance to the Space Centre the café provides a good range of snacks and light lunches (for example £4.25 for a soup and sandwich deal or £3.30 for a children’s meal deal) and there is both an indoor and outdoor picnic area for visitors who are organized enough to bring their own lunch. The museum offers a wealth of hands-on exhibits relating to all aspects of space exploration. There are six galleries to explore with information and experiences that include: discovering if you have the reaction times and communication skills to be an astronaut; everything you ever wanted to know about our solar system and its planets; how gravity works; what a wormhole looks like; and how to send a cosmonaut into space. There was so much to see and do that we decided to target a couple of galleries only and make use of our free annual pass on subsequent visits. Highly welcome for the younger members in our party was the Lunar Jim play area, which was perfect for toddlers to chill in. A final tip: go there on a hot Sunday in August to beat the queues! We made a return visit on such a day and were amazed at the contrast in quantities of visitors – much easier to have a proper ‘go’ at all the experiments and activities on offer. Highly recommended: the recording studio where our eldest son filmed his own TV weather forecast and the machine where he tried to land a lunar module on the moon.


ver since our eldest son first showed an interest in the solar system and all things connected with space, we’ve been meaning to visit the National Space Centre in Leicester. When we got there on a wet Wednesday in half-term, it seemed the rest of the East Midlands had had the same idea as us. The queue, we were informed outside the entrance, was an hour long wait and we were recommended to return a bit later when the queue should have subsided. With three children in tow we decided to follow this advice and paid a visit to the Abbey Pumping Station next door. Once the sewage works for the city of Leicester, the Abbey Pumping Station is now a museum showcasing Leicester’s scientific heritage. The museum houses the magnificently constructed sewerage pumps that were such a feat of Victorian engineering, but of even greater interest to our children was the range of interactive exhibits on offer; lots of buttons to press, levers to pull and handles to turn in the name of scientific discovery. Our two year old also loved the indoor play area with Thomas the Tank Engine play table, children’s books and jigsaws. There is no charge to visit the Abbey Pumping Station so it was a cost effective detour for us and really warrants a visit in its own right, particularly on the event days it stages throughout the year, which include special steam days with the mighty beam steam engines in steam. Highly recommended: the toys operated by pushing buttons and the tram track experiment.

Details National Space Centre, Exploration Drive, Leicester, LE4 5NS Telephone: 0116 261 0261 Website: Admission: £17.00 for adults, £11.00 for children. Under 5s enter free. Automatic upgrade to annual pass when purchasing a full price ticket. Term time and winter opening: Tuesday–Friday 10.00am–4.00pm; Saturday–Sunday 10.00am–5.00pm. School holidays: Monday–Sunday 10.00am–5.00pm. Facilities: pay and display car park (£2.00), café, accessible WC.

Details Abbey Pumping Station, Corporation Road, Leicester LE4 5PX Telephone: 0116 299 5111 Email: Admission: free (small charge for certain event days and activities). Open daily: 11.00am–4.30pm February–October. Open November–January for special events only. Facilities: accessible WC nearby. For details of special events visit: and follow the‘What’s On’ link. RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH LIVING DECEMBER 2011

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TOWER AND GLORY Alysia Anderson explores Durham’s castle and cathedral on a weekend break


recently revisited my old university, Durham. This historic city lies on the train line from Peterborough so I hopped aboard one Saturday morning and was in my alma mater before lunch. The view from the station had lost none of its charm: cathedral towers soaring high above the River Wear. The cathedral was begun in 1093 to house the shrine of St Cuthbert, whose remains were brought to Durham a century earlier when the monks fled Lindisfarne. A stone’s throw away, William the Conqueror built Durham Castle which became the bishop’s palace. Today the castle and cathedral are jointly designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. From the station it’s a steep descent on foot down to what Bill Bryson described as ‘a perfect little city’. The castle and cathedral occupy a peninsula within a loop of the River Wear, whose wooded banks drop vertiginously to a beautiful riverside walk. Ancient bridges lead to the city centre where bookshops, cafés and retro boutiques jostle with curry houses and bakeries selling stotties, the traditional round Geordie loaves. Just off the triangular marketplace is the Victorian market hall, its stalls selling everything from meat to antiques. I followed cobbled Saddler Street past fine Georgian houses up to the cathedral and castle. In 1836 the Bishops of Durham ceded their powers to the Crown and transferred the castle to the newly founded university. Students still live there today and in the holidays their rooms make basic but popular tourist accommodation. Sadly there was none available on my visit but I found an excellent apartment next-door to my old French lecture halls. With its flat screen TV and Jacuzzi bath it was certainly a cut above my student digs. The only way to see inside the castle is on a guided tour, taking in such sights as the medieval kitchens which, remarkably, are still in use. From here, it’s a minute’s stroll across Palace Green to the cathedral. For centuries pilgrims came to worship at this grand example of Norman architecture. Today its immense nave, lined with vast patterned pillars, still inspires awe. Legs permitting, you can climb the 325 steps of the tower for sweeping views across the county, even to the Angel of the North. After a reviving cuppa in the Undercroft Café, I strolled down pretty South Bailey to Prebends Bridge, where a plaque quotes Sir Walter Scott: ‘Grey towers of Durham, Yet well I love thy mixed and massive piles, Half church of God, half castle ‘gainst the Scot, And long to roam these venerable aisles With records stored of deeds long since forgot.’

DURHAM’S TOP FIVE • Durham Cathedral Marvel at the majestic nave, the first in England to use pointed arches, and visit the tomb of the Venerable Bede, England’s earliest historian. • Durham Castle Climb the hanging staircase and admire the Norman chapel’s medieval treasures. • River Wear Sightsee from a cruise or rowing boat or walk along the riverside, passing university boathouses and the Museum of Archaeology in an old mill. • Oriental Museum Highlights include the Egyptian and Chinese collections. • Crook Hall This medieval house is a real find, with its walled gardens and maze.

Eating and drinking Durham offers everything from pub grub to Spanish, Italian, Thai and Indian. For fine fare try Oldfields on Claypath, Gourmet Spot on The Avenue or Bistro 21 on the edge of town. Enjoy a river-view lunch at the Cellar Door on Saddler Street or brunch at Leonard’s Coffee House in Fowler’s Yard, a knot of warehouses now home to artist studios. Where to stay The Victorian Townhouse, 2 Victoria Terrace DH1 4RW Tel: 0191 370 9963; Stylish, cathedral-view b&b. Doubles from £80. Oasis and Moonlight Apartments, St Andrew’s Court DH1 3AH Tel: 0191 378 7651; Self-catering luxury from around £50 per person. Events Amid all the academia and ancient history it’s easy to forget Durham’s coalmining past. The Miners’ Gala is held each July, following the Durham Regatta in June. August brings the Streets of Summer music festival while in November the Lumière art event lights up Durham’s skyline. For details of events, accommodation and more, visit RUTLAND & MARKET HARBOROUGH LIVING DECEMBER 2011

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A family day out at Snibston Discovery Museum Michelle Hansel and family have a great day learning about Leicestershire history, science, technology and industry What is Snibston Discovery Museum? Snibston is situated on the site of a former colliery on the outskirts of the town of Coalville and is dedicated to preserving and promoting the diversely rich heritage of Leicestershire. The museum proudly explores and allows the visitor to discover the history behind the colliery as well as providing a variety of first rate science and technology exhibitions that children will love. I took my 6 year old son, Luke, who particularly enjoyed wearing a coal miner’s helmet and climbing through a mock coal mine tunnel as well as manipulating machinery and discovering many other tactile exhibits along the way.

anecdotes mixed with information and insights into the coal mining industry and way of life. Along the way you could see examples of the past facilities and this really helped you imagine what life would have been like.

Exhibitions and Galleries Whilst Luke and my husband Rob did some experiments in the technology part of the museum I managed to wander off and take a look at the popular fashion gallery where fashion through the decades can be viewed. This to me was incredibly interesting and is perfect for anyone interested in clothes! Another fun exhibition is the toy gallery where you can relive your childhood when looking through the nostalgic toys of your youth, remember the Care Bears?

Outdoor play The outdoor space at Snibston is excellent for children with many more interactive exhibits to explore as well as the usual climbing apparatus to keep energetic young ones amused. You will find the under 5’s play area; mini miners play park, Big Pit sandpit, wild water and science play all to explore. Luke’s favourite was the Science Play, comprising of around 20 large scale exhibits they demonstrate everything from how bridges are constructed, to the way in which messages can be transmitted from satellite dishes. Again, the emphasis throughout is upon finding out through play. The exhibits allow children and adults of all ages to gain an insight into everyday science and technology.

Colliery tours No visit would be complete without a tour of the former colliery by an ex coal miner bookable on entrance to the museum and with an extra charge, it is well worth it. Our guide did a great job of keeping young and old amused with


Snibston Country Park If the weather permits the outside space is plentiful here and includes many picnic tables for your comfort. Further afield you can discover nature trails, sculptures and walking paths at the Snibston country Park, which is situated on the former colliery spoil heap reclaimed to form woodland and an open rough grassland area, ideal for picnics and playing.

Train rides Also pre-bookable at the start of your visit is the opportunity to ride on a restored 1960s passenger train on a short trip from the heart of the former mine eastwards into the centre of Coalville and westward to the old sidings complex. Although we were unable to do this on the day we visited, this tour is available on selected days and times. Luke was quite disappointed so check on the train rides’ availability before setting off – a lesson we have learned! The Century Theatre Another attraction at Snibston is the oldest surviving mobile theatre, The Century Theatre providing an auditorium for 200 people and a full size stage. The theatre was created to take quality drama to communities throughout Britain and helped greatly with post-war cultural reconstruction. The theatre is still used as an auditorium for events including lectures, music and drama. Guided tours can be arranged by booking in advance or why not book to see one of the many performances shown throughout the year. • See the website museum for full details of the attractions, opening times and admission fees as well as details of special events taking place. It is advisable to pre book specific tours or events to avoid disappointment. There is a free car park for the museum. Snibston is located on the edge of Coalville town centre, is on major road routes, accessible by public transport and within a short distance of the main regional airport. A map can be downloaded from the website.


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• RL December ADS.indd 60

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A LETTER HOME Jeremy Beswick explores the benefits of living in Rutland

Dear Jim,

ndon. while – I’ve quit Lo ard from me for a he n’t ve ha u yo Sorry ditns, with my job cre muggers’ conventio d pe plan. an ca als es tiv an fes ed er dless litt e plughole, I hatch th ds ar tow Wearying of the en far bly e ra ar ge gardens rriage edging inexo actical (Knightsbrid pr im crunched and ma (too as rse ted ho na mi ing diately eli s). Ditto vault A tunnel was imme ugh my trouser leg de my ro ma th so rth d ea an s at rd th he se of all d German Shep an s ht too small to dispo lig ash” on ch “d ar to se e e as it is possibl for evading th lar and A1 (insofar cu re cars athletic). I plumped Cir mo th rth wi No t e bu th 5 edom via rsion of the M2 ve e -ag ne sto moonlit dash for fre a , ow which is, as you kn the North Circular rn south of the mode e). sid tably I didn’t stop and less country un co d unknown ac lan Un ter ? hin nic o pa Was it northwards int on d se es Was it euphoria? pr t at the bu d) po or and with pass rt drian’s Wall (Watf to become cobbled s metrosexual‘s Ha ad ro e th for g rner, waitin to any soft southe ght still exist and, ere cannibalism mi wh s ce ready. pla s ell). ou er es, Newport Pagn wild and dang The signs showed ailable (Milton Keyn av ily ad re be t no uccinos worse, decent capp ing g I was hallucinat d I’d driven so lon se ali re night. d e th an A1 for e st s time to re I turned off th Eventually, tiring, ed with Paris). It wa mbled inn stu tw I s d, wa be e a d lag an vil at last in search of beer r ca my (could’ve sworn th the of ll on ca ’ll co g from the co e sake of it, we meless but, for th Nervously emergin na in ma re ll wi hment which vels across an establis yed for two weeks. vered from my tra Oakingham. I sta at er ipp Wh , is what I’ve disco Jim ar Falcon de y. re, wh he d ow , I don’t kn Rutland an as they talk to me Thus it was I found means es seem to twinkle ey ’s o in Parvo” which ne ult yo “M er Ev law al. nt cie an an and the loc to e du are illegal. This is Traffic jams here Open to mous boating lake. . rk” “Many shall Pa ston, owns an enor We ght be ith mi Ed at d th , lle ain ca y ag lad al equinox. Then rn The local bigwig, a ve e th d an ys nate Wednesda the public on alter x is higher. Maybe e – I forget. stl Ca but the Council Ta on nd Lo o). of Rockingham ice pr s, there are only tw is a third of the m Pelican crossing fro t Bizarrely, property ar rt. ou (ap s ec ht for lig e c th for more traffi lls Ferraris in -op superstore se they’re saving up town is ordable as the Co aff ly station in the main us ay vio ilw ra ob e it’s th d an y!) Anyway, all re (no n on Sundays The buses don’t ru rnby kit. Ho unt ‘em - one!). old made from an the whole place (co in r lle se ue id?). Iss Big ss (is the cheese liv There is only one ly the butter’s cro nt re pa . ap t all bu er is, e aft Bit hazy on th ria and Lancashir ggeringly, polite. It’s n are not in Cumb e friendly; also, sta ar t bu Barrow and Presto ish fet y, concern oe Common courtes a strange horsesh d Downton Abbey. The natives have an s t alive er bu ch , Ar ink e th Th Londoners a mixture of a bit like being in ne are extinct as we no ; sty de mo y, nc dece for your neighbour, ing. riv th d an ll we d an local brew by a surfeit of the ubtless brought on t in every (do bu sm to) ici ed lyr us my ’re rgive ction of what we fra a But more Jim. Fo sts co in the d s, an ire ugh church sp e electric soup which is rather lik side glimpsed thro try tten. un go co of for lf ta ha vis in each mething else thatched cottage, I’ve discovered so n, tio sa er nv co ay yd gentleness of ever . Dear old England ve me. le while, if they’ll ha litt a y sta I’ll I think on. Will write again so


Yours bucolically,

Ru pert

nt an invasion. lf club, we don’t wa go e th at s lad e th P.S. Don’t tell




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2 DEC 2011 – 14 JAN 2012 2 DEC 2011 – JAN 2012 214 DEC 2011 – OPENS


2 DEC 2011 –


14 2012 DEC! 142JAN JAN 2012

2 DEC 2011 – 14 JAN 2012


Original Direction and Dances by GOWER CHAMPION


TheMusic use of by all songs is byWARREN arrangement with Warner Bros. andAL DUBIN Music by HARRY WARREN Lyrics by HARRY Lyrics by AL DUBIN BMI Music Ltd,by the owners of music publishers’ rightsBRAMBLE Book MICHAEL STEWART & MARK BookPublishing by MICHAEL STEWART & MARK BRAMBLE


Lyrics by AL DUBIN Based novel by BRADFORD ROPES Book by MICHAEL &the MARK BRAMBLE Based onSTEWART the novel by on BRADFORD ROPES

Music by HARRY WARREN Lyrics by AL DUBIN Based on the novel by BRADFORD ROPES Original Direction GOWER CHAMPION Book by MICHAEL STEWART &Dances MARK and BRAMBLE Original Direction and by Dances GOWERbyCHAMPION



Original and Dances by GOWER CHAMPION BasedDirection on the novel by BRADFORD ROPES

Originallyon Produced on Broadway DAVID MERRICK Originally Produced Broadway by DAVID by MERRICK

Original Direction and Dances by GOWER on CHAMPION Originally Produced Broadway by DAVID MERRICK

The use of all songs is by arrangement with Warner The use of all songs is by arrangement with Warner Bros. and Bros. and Originally Produced Broadway byby DAVID MERRICK TheMusic use on ofPublishing all songs is with Warner Bros. andrights BMI Ltd,arrangement the ownerspublishers’ of music publishers’ BMI Music Publishing Ltd, the owners of music rights

BMI by Music Publishing Ltd, the owners of publishers’ rights The use of all songs by arrangement with Warner Bros. andmusiccharity Curve is run is Leicester Theatre Trust Limited, a registered BMI Music Publishing Ltd,We thegratefully owners of music publishers’ rights the continued (no. 230708). acknowledge and welcome support of and partnership with the above organisations.


Curve is run by Leicester Theatre Trust Limited, a registered charity

CurveTheatre is run by Leicester Theatre Trustcharity Limited, a registered charity CurveCurve is run by Leicester Trust Limited, a registered is run by Leicester Theatre Trust Limited, a registered charity (no. 230708). We gratefully acknowledge welcome the continued (no. 230708). We gratefully acknowledge andand welcome the continued (no. 230708). We gratefully acknowledge and welcome the continued (no. 230708). We gratefully acknowledge and welcome the continued support and partnership with the above organisations. support ofof and with the above organisations. support of and partnership with the partnership above organisations.

support of and partnership with the above organisations.


• RL December ADS.indd 64 Cureve 42Street A4.indd 1

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17/11/11 11:13:53 08/11/2011 16:14

Rutland Living December 2011  

Rutland Living December 2011

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