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Cambridge APRIL 2013

Cambridgeshire’s quality lifestyle magazine



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APRIL 2013




46 5 š FIVE THINGS TO DO The editor rounds up her top five picks for April 6-7 š NIGHTLIFE From club nights to comedy, gigs and festivals we’ve got the low-down on afterhours fun this month 9 š INTERVIEW Edition catches up with former Madness frontman Suggs ahead of his visit to Cambridge 10-15 š ARTS & CULTURE We take a look at exciting arty goings-on around the area and Ruthie from the Cambridge Art Salon shares the gossip from the local arts scene

33 š FOOD COLUMN Alex Rushmer pays homage to the humble but ever-reliable egg

37-38 š FOOD NEWS A round-up of gastro goings-on around Cambridgeshire for April

20 š GROUP SPOTLIGHT In the first of a new series, we meet the local academics turned stand-up comics, Cambridge Bright Club

42-45 š FASHION Esme Benjamin highlights her top style picks for men and women

25 š COMPETITION This month we’re giving away a gym membership worth £749 27 š INDIE OF THE MONTH In the spotlight this month, Italian-inspired delicatessen Limoncello 28-29 š FIVE OF THE BEST Our editor dishes up the best brunch spots in town 31 šREVIEW Jennifer Shelton pays a visit to Bene’t Street’s newest resident: CAU


34-35 š RECIPES Two eggstra-ordinarily tasty recipes from our resident foodie

18-19 š WORDFEST Highlights from the spring edition of the local literary festival

22-23 š LISTINGS A comprehensive guide to events around the county this April

First up, I want to say a massive well done to the organisers of last month’s inaugural Eat Cambridgee festival, a great local event which truly showcased the variety and calibre of our city’s food scene for the very first time. And, if the thousands of locals that turned out are anything to go by, it’s an event which the city has been crying out for. Here’s to next year, and hopefully lots more events from the Eat Cambridge crew. Speaking of the Cambridge food scene, this month I went in search of that weekend Holy Grail: the perfect brunch. I’m often at a loss as to where to head for that lovely languid late-morning feast, so set about researching the contenders with gusto. Turn to page 28 to see my pick of the best. My highlight of the month event-wise is literary festival Wordfest, which runs from 12 to 14 April. The programme is as packed as ever, with special guests ranging from philosopher A C Grayling to international drugs baron Howard Marks, along with writing workshops and lots of kids activities too. We also caught up with Madness frontman Suggs (who’s in town this month), and in the first of a new series, met the Bright Club – a group of local science boffins turned stand-up comedians (how brilliantly Cambridge is that?). Enjoy the issue!


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46-47 š BEAUTY Charlotte and Daisy cast their eyes over the top catwalk beauty looks



Editor Nicola Foley 01223 499459

49-50 š PROPERTY NEWS Edition reports on exciting happenings in the local property market

Features editor Jennifer Shelton 01223 499463

Alex Rushmer, Charlotte Griffiths, Daisy Dickinson, Esme Benjamin, Emily Brooks, Ruthie Collins

52-57 š INTERIORS Summer’s on its way and it’s time to start thinking al fresco entertaining, says Emily Brooks 58 š GARDEN WISH LIST From quirky illuminations to beautiful bird houses and gorgeous gardening tools, we select our outdoor must-haves 63-64 š PETS Local experts give us pointers on training and treating our pets, the right way

Sub Editor Lisa Clatworthy Sub Editor Hannah Bealey


DESIGN & PRODUCTION Senior Designer Alan Gray 01223 499450

PUBLISHING DIRECTORS Andy Brogden & Matt Pluck 01223 499450

Senior Sales Executive Claire McGrath 01223 499461 Sales Executive Sam Bushell 01223 499451

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Things to do this month

Image courtesy of Robert Talks


Get your literary fix


Cambridge Wordfest starts up again this month, offering a rich programme of literary treats at various locations across the city from 12 to 14 April. The line-up for Spring 2013 includes writer and comedian Sandi Toksvig; philosopher A C Grayling; acclaimed Nigerian novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie; Man Booker chair, Wordfest patron and travel writer Robert Macfarlane; and Deborah Moggach, author of The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel. There are also plenty of children’s events, plus writing workshops covering all manner of genres, offering advice from picking up your pen to getting published. For the full Spring Wordfest programme, visit

Check out the Green Man in Thriplow Fans of The Hole in the Wall restaurant will be delighted to hear that during April, restaurateur, former Masterchef finalist and Cambridge Edition food writer Alex Rushmer will be opening his second restaurant in the village of Thriplow, just south of Cambridge. Alex and his business partner, fellow chef Ben Maude, are opening their second establishment on the site of the former Green Man pub in the village. Promising the same delicious, seasonal dishes, carefully crafted wine list and the very best local ales as can already be found in their Little Wilbraham-based establishment, we’re sure The Green Man will quickly earn a well-deserved place on the county’s map of culinary destinations. Stay tuned to Cambridge Edition for more news next month.


Support the Cambridge Lakes Project! Imagine if, as well as the lush lawns of Parker’s Piece, Midsummer Common and Jesus Green, Cantabrigians had a beach on which to relax on balmy summers days. Sound ridiculous? Perhaps not – at least if local businessman Steve Turvill (owner of Mill Road’s Limoncello) has anything to do with it. He wants to turn the currently off-limits Romsey Lakes into a space which local people can enjoy. “The lakes are really close by and unbelievably beautiful, but at the moment they’re fenced off, which seems such a waste. I want to open the area up to everyone and make it safe and accessible to all. When you consider how many people live around here and they’ve only got limited parks… this would change all that. We’ve had a lot of support from local people so we’re just waiting for the council to give us the go-ahead. It would be fantastic for Cambridge.”

Sleep under the stars


It’s hard to say whether it’ll be snowing or sunny by the time this magazine hits the streets, but regardless – we’re in the mood for some al fresco adventures. Feel the same? Grab some friends and head over to Wicken Fen for a night of wild camping. At this beautiful nature reserve, you’ll find four open-fronted shelters clustered around a fire pit, far away from the bustle of civilisation, where you can soak up the spectacular scenery before bedding down for the night under the vast, open starry skies. The campsite, including all four shelters (they each sleep six adults or eight children), can be hired for £25 per night. Bring food, water, wood, matches, warm camping gear and loo paper (for the eco toilets!)

Witness a new kind of comedy Stand-up, with no tal talking. It sounds weird, but The Boy With turn out to be one of the most championed Tape On His Face turned acts of last summer’s Edinburgh Festival, and now’s your chance to see what w all the fuss is about, as former street perform performer Sam Wills brings his unique show to Cambr Cambridge Guildhall on 4 April (8pm). There are movie mo references aplenty, laughs, some sadne – and a possibility you’ll be invited sadness He might be silent, but the papers on stage. st have been cacophonous in their praise, calling his show “superlative-defying” and infused with “inventiveness, wit and a refreshingly wi uncynical approach”. Tickets cost £15. un ww


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NIGHTLIFE The Living Room A hub of local musical talent, The Living Room at CB2 Café on Norfolk Street is held on the first Friday of each month. This free-range acoustic night still inhabits the atmospheric cellar in which it all began back in 2004 and forms part of the Hope Street Music portfolio, which also runs stages at the Secret Garden Party, Cambridge Folk

Festival and the annual Strawberry Fair. CB2 itself is a popular hangout situated in the diverse Kite area of town, well known to locals for its laidback, friendly vibe and great coffees. Come along and listen on 12 April. If you want to perform, email Kevin or Phil at hopestreetmusic@ Tickets available from

La Raza

BOUTIQUE BOWLING OPENS IN ST IVES Following the lead of ultraswanky London venues, Cambridgeshire now has its first ever boutique bowling experience. Located at One Leisure in St Ives, the stylish five-lane Basement Lanes offers bowling with a luxury twist. As well as personal lane service for all your

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There’s a brand new offering on the first Thursday of every month at La Raza, in the shape of Off The Top (4 April). With a soundtrack supplied by a varied collection of open-minded local DJs, this genrespanning night is the perfect pre-weekend warmup session. Also at La Raza this month, In Lights are performing – a dapper trio who you may have noticed mixing drinks behind the bar at La Raza and Tabouche. But Tom, Ady and James are men of many talents, and will be picking up their guitars to play a stripped-back set of chilled-out acoustic covers – the perfect accompaniment to a spot of dinner or a couple of midweek cocktails. 24 April, 8pm, free entry. For more info, visit

cocktail needs, there’s locally sourced gourmet burgers to tuck into for a bit of pre- or postbowling fuel. Different packages are available for groups, kids and families, and there’s also the option of exclusive hire for groups of 19 to 30 people. For more information, visit



Live Jazz at Baroosh

The Rocky Horror Show Musical theatre’s wildest and weirdest show returns to the Cambridge stage, offering theatregoers a night of fun and high camp mischief. The Rocky Horror Show, which runs at the Corn Exchange from 29 April until 4 May, is set to be one of the biggest shows of the spring in Cambridge. Created by Richard O’Brien, The Rocky Horror Show is a tongue-in-cheek tribute to the sci-fi and horror B movies of the 1970s, and opened in London in 1973, spawning The Rocky Horror Picture Show two years later. The story follows squeaky clean sweethearts Brad and Janet, whose world is turned upside down by a host of unforgettable characters, from the scandalous Frank ’n’ Furter to rippling Rocky and vivacious Magenta. Be prepared to be singing ‘Damn It Janet’, ‘Sweet Transvestite’ and ‘Time Warp’ all the way home, and quite possibly for many days afterwards. Tickets from £19.50.

At Baroosh (formerly known as B Bar), it’s jazz night on Wednesday 3 April, when local group Jazz Wave bring their smooth sounds to the upstairs bar. The Cambridge fivepiece are headed up by singer Ruth Wilman and comprise an orchestra of piano, bass, clarinet, alto sax and drums. They play a mix of swing, mainstream and modern jazz, straying occasionally into funk and pop. 8.30-10.30pm, free entry.

Lee Nelson Charming chav Lee Nelson, the alter ego of comedian Simon Brodkin, will be bantering with audiences in Cambridge this month. It’s the third extended leg of his Lee Nelson live tour, having sold out at venues across the UK. Best known for his gargantuan hit TV series Lee Nelson’s Well Good Show on BBC3, the irrepressible, trackie-wearing yoof will be bringing his now legendary combination of sketches, games and

audience interaction to the Cambridge Junction on 6 April. Expect lots of laughs, inappropriate jokes and high levels of embarrassment for audience members – along with star turns from friends from the show including Dr Bob and gaffeprone footballer Jason Bent. 7.30pm, £15.

Happy Birthday Warning! Cambridge’s biggest drum and bass night returns with some of the genre’s finest on the wheels of steel. It’s Warning’s 18th birthday too, so you can guarantee they’ll be pulling out all the stops. There’s a warmup party at Bar Nusha across the way, then it’s over to Cambridge Junction for the main event. The line-up includes DJs Andy C, Hype, Barrington and MCs Skibadee and Shabba, plus loads more. 13 April, £15 adv, over 18s only. See


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Edition catches up with the Madness frontman ahead of his gig in Cambridge this month HIRTY YEARS AGO, SEVEN lads from North London never dreamed they’d still be performing ‘Our House’ at the age of 50. Let alone on the roof of Buckingham Palace. “It doesn’t get any more surreal than that,” says Madness frontman, Suggs. “Last year was a real high: playing at the Jubilee, on the roof of Buckingham Palace, and then at the closing ceremony at the Olympics... “Somebody found an article in Smash Hits from when I was 18, and I was saying: ‘there’s no way I’ll still be singing ‘Baggy Trousers’ when I’m 30’ – it seemed old back then!” In 2012 Madness released their tenth album, Oui Oui Si Si Ja Ja Da Da, a critically acclaimed return to their original two-tone ska sound. Now, Suggs’s latest venture is My Life Story in Words and Music: a musical memoir come stand-up show that delves into his past. Born Graham MacPherson in 1961 (looking for a nickname, he stuck a pin in his mum’s jazz encyclopedia and landed on flautist Peter Suggs), he spent his childhood moving to wherever his pub singer mother got work. Suggs’s curiosity about his father was part of what drove his decision to make a show about his past, but what prompted it was something rather more immediate. “On my 50th birthday my cat fell off a shelf and died,” he explains. “It sounds like some kind of black comedy, but it was a shock. And my kids had just left home, so it got me thinking about things.” I’m struck by Suggs’s openness when interviewing him – I’d read on Wikipedia that he loathes giving interviews and is notoriously cagey, but when we speak he’s huskily chipper and charmingly down to earth. I’d also read that he doesn’t trust the aforementioned site because a lot of what it says about him is

Madness reunited with a gig at Finsbury Park, where fans made so much noise that the British Geological Survey received reports of a mini earthquake

wrong – clearly he was right. He tells me that the process of putting the new show together was an interesting one: “Finding out, for instance, what happened to my dad. I knew he was a heroin addict, and ended up in an asylum,” he says. “I discovered he’d died a lot later than I’d thought, which was even more of a shame. If he’d been around longer, our paths might have crossed.” Suggs was barely 20 when he became a father himself, just as Madness were riding the first wave of their success. Did his father’s failings make him more conscious of doing a good job himself? “I love my wife and kids, and it did focus me on what it meant to be a father – I thought about it very seriously. “My mum looked after me and we never wanted for anything, but I suppose you do miss something. The band were a surrogate family – I met them in my early teens and pretty much all of them came from ‘broken homes’. We were certainly close and still are.” Like any family, Madness squabbled, even splitting several times. They reunited in 1992 with a gig at Finsbury Park, where fans made so much noise that the British Geological


Survey received reports of a mini earthquake. “The fact that we’re still together after 30 years is quite a feat. It’s like some mad social experiment, getting seven people from school and saying, ‘You’re still going to be working together 30 years later’.” The Madness tradition of making art from the everyday continues, though their recent single, ‘Never Knew Your Name’ – about spotting a girl in a club – is more a homage to the past than a reflection of their lives today. Despite the reflective nature of My Life Story, it’s the present and future that Suggs is ultimately interested in. “When I was first working on the show, I was worried it was going to be a bit too sad,” he says, “but I was determined it wasn’t just going to be standup – it had to have a point to it. It’s happy and sad. Poignant.” He considers: “What I’m trying to say is that sometimes it’s good to let go of the past. It’s good to think about it, but it’s important to be grateful for the people you have around you now.” Suggs: My Life Story in Words and Music, Cambridge Corn Exchange, 18 April, 7.30pm

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ARTS & CULTURE We explore the arts and culture scene in Cambridge, showcasing some of the many exciting exhibitions and projects taking place around the city, as well as highlighting the local artists and events to look out for

FAMILY PORTRAITS Local artist Ted Coney is launching a new exhibition for April, centered around the themes of family life and family relationships. Mostly oils, there are over 40 paintings in total. They will be on display at his house in Ely, a beautiful 300-year-old cottage close to the river. The gallery is open on Sunday afternoons, or at other times by appointment, and Ted will be on hand to offer guided tours and explanations of his works. In addition to the paintings, Ted’s pop-up gallery features other objects of interest, including a doll’s house and a 1931 Morris Minor – some of which appear as subjects in his paintings.

QUENTIN BLAKE: DRAWN BY HAND As one of the most popular illustrators of his generation, Quentin Blake has been responsible for bringing to life some of the best-loved characters from children’s literature. Amongst lots more wonderful artwork, he’s perhaps most famous for his collaborations with Roald Dahl; a partnership which produced much-adored characters such as the BFG, Matilda and Willy Wonka. He also created his own charming illustrated books including Mister Magnolia, Zagazoo and Loveykins. Until 12 May, he will be exhibiting a collection of works he has produced over the past decade, including book illustrations, etchings, lithographs, drawings and works shown in hospitals. The collection will be

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accompanied by a display of materials from his personal studio, which includes quills, watercolours and brochures. “Over the past few years I have produced, in addition to book illustration, a large number of works to appear in museums, hospitals and other public spaces; a sort of odyssey on the drawing board, which I recount in the book Beyond the Page,” says Blake, a former Cambridge student. “I was delighted to think that an exhibition at the Fitzwilliam gave me the opportunity to allow the spectators to see a diversity of these works and their techniques at close quarters.” For more information on this event, visit



THE PITMEN PAINTERS A group of miners from Ashington, near Newcastle, might seem an unlikely source of great art, but in 1934 one plucky bunch proved the world wrong. The Pitmen Painters, by the writer of Billy Elliot, is based on the true story of the group, who shook the art world with their striking depictions of their life down the mines. After embarking somewhat half-heartedly on an art class, these salt-of-the-earth miners, who had worked all their lives and never given a second glance to Monet’s Water Lilies, began to abandon theory in favour of practice and reveal

great hidden talents. Their paintings, which were unrefined and avant-garde, were soon picked up on by some of the most notable art collectors of the day. Humorous and thought-provoking, this West End smash hit show puts you in the company of some fantastic characters, and reminds us that sometimes, great things can be found in the most unexpected of places. It runs at the Arts Theatre from 22 to 27 April. 7.45pm. Tickets are £15-£30.


WYSING ARTS CENTRE A public programme of events, talks and presentations is taking place at Wysing Arts Centre in Bourn this month, involving local experts and specialists sharing their ideas around the theme of the centre’s 2013 artist in residence programme, Convention T. Starting things off on 7 April is an artists and musicians masterclass, led by Marshall Allen of jazz ensemble Sun Ra Arkestra. At 89 he’s got plenty of experience to share. He’ll be joined by experimental film-maker James Harrar and others for an afternoon of avantgarde rock and psychedelia, followed by a live performance (4-6pm, £5, live performance 8pm). Or, you can learn the science of bread making with Peter Voshol on 13 and 14 April, 12-4pm (free, suitable for all ages, booking advised). On 17 April meanwhile, Sarah Ellen MacDonald will be discussing the mysterious origins of Royston Cave, while anthropologist Dr Nicholas James will talk about ancient Roman roads (6.30pm). Science fans, put 24 April in your diaries, when you’ll be able to hear a piece developed in SuperCollider programming language, featuring synthesised handbells and a Nintendo Wii remote. Intriguing! For information on these events, visit

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Telephone: 01223 483010


CAMBRIDGE AT ITS BEST monochrome prints, pinpointed with bright spots of colour and light; a technique that’s won him many a prize. Also exhibiting is Clare Halifax, who prints onto textiles, and Ian Scott Massie who draws inspiration from the work of Paul Nash; while Glynn Thomas, who studied in Cambridge in the sixties, specialises in intricate depictions of cities and villages. Cambridge Contemporary Arts is situated on Trinity Street, open 9am-5.30pm and 11am-5pm Sundays. Contact 01223 324222.

© The estate of Maksim Vladimirovich Ushakov-Poskochin

Cambridge Contemporary Art is hosting an exhibition solely dedicated to our fine city from 6 until 28 April. Cambridge at its Best will showcase the works of six local painters and artists, and in doing so, reveal six very different ways of looking at our city. Isobel Stemp paints with free, sweeping acrylics to create vibrant depictions of flowers, buildings and landscapes. We love her evocative glimpses into the Cambridge Colleges at night. Trevor Woods’ simplistic paintings are almost like retro comic strip designs, while John Duffin produces striking

Isobel Stemp

Ian Scott Massie

John Duffin


THE PAPER CINEMA: ODYSSEY Brave the high seas, immerse yourself in a spirit of adventure and come face to face with danger in a charming paper-made, pen and ink story by The Paper Cinema. Odyssey is their latest creation; an inventive, beautiful new take on Homer’s epic tale of one man’s quest to get home. Accompanied by a live score, the narrative is told through illustration, puppetry and cinematic projection, creating a vivid and original production. The Paper Cinema: Odyssey, is at Cambridge Junction on 16 April. Tickets £8-£12, showtime 7.30pm.


Dr Catherine Cooke (1942-2004) amassed a rare and fascinating collection of material in an academic life dedicated to Soviet design. Her particular interests were the Russian avant-garde, constructivism and urban design, as reflected by her books and by the exhibitions she herself curated. This month, Cambridge University Library is holding A Soviet Design for Life: The Catherine Cooke Collection of 20th Century Russian Architecture and Design, showcasing her extraordinary work. It uses a wide range of items to look at how what we might consider to be of classic ‘Soviet’ design has presented itself throughout the decades. Material dates from the early revolutionary years through to 1991 and reveals the complexity yet consistency of this iconic design style. The exhibition runs until 6 April. Entry is free. Further details at

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ACROSS THE CAM St John’s College is currently hosting a beautiful exhibition on the Cambridge college bridges and their appearance in art and photography. Until 25 April, you can see how some of our city’s most picturesque structures appeared in centuries gone by, and meet Father Cam – the reclining figure carved onto the ancient Kitchen Bridge – the first stone bridge to be built across the river 300 years ago. Don’t miss the tiny engraving by Richard Harden of the Bridge of Sighs, Cambridge’s second river crossing. Painted in 1829, the year the bridge was built, it’s thought to be the earliest ever pictorial account.

The library’s collection of photographs, including student snapshots from the 1860s right up to the present day, is also available to view – giving a fascinating glimpse into college life, as well as life on the river across the decades. The exhibition coincides with the tercentenary of the building of the Kitchen Bridge by Robert Grumbold, who based it loosely on designs drawn up by Sir Christopher Wren in the 1690s. You’ll find the exhibition in the Library Exhibition Area, between the Old Library and the Working Library. It’s open to visitors Monday to Friday, 9am-5pm.

JUNCTION UNIVERSITY A series of new artist-led workshops and short courses are springing up as part of the Junction University initiative, aimed at developing new artists and encouraging the public to engage with the arts. In Haiku Bombing on 6 April, the Japanese art form gets a modern twist in Ben Mellor’s workshop, in which he brings together street art and graffiti to encourage you to write poems and find subversive ways to drop them into the environments that inspired them. Also on 6 April is Dancing Politics – a chance to express your political views through dance and explore ideas of what dance is and how it might be made, at a one-day course led by Gillie Kleiman and Hamish MacPherson. There’ll be a workshop in the morning, leading up to a group dance in the afternoon. No dance or political experience is required – just comfortable clothes and shoes (both events are free). Cambridge Junction is also seeking proposals for innovative Live Art projects to take place between July and November. There is funding available for a limited number of projects. For more details, visit

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CAMBRIDGE DRAMA FESTIVAL Now in its 45th year, Cambridge Drama Festival reveals the latest productions by adult and junior theatre groups from across the region, consisting of short plays from a multitude of different genres. It takes place at the Mumford Theatre from 23-27 April, and there’ll be at least two one-act plays per night. In addition, you’ll find theatrical quizzes to take part in, plus professional critiques of each play, given by Jill Colby from the Guild of Drama Adjudicators. The festival ends with a presentation of awards to groups and individuals which have produced outstanding work. Tickets cost £7-£8 per evening or £18-£20 for the week, with performances starting at 7.30pm nightly. For more information, visit

ART SPEAK AT THE FITZ It’s easy at an art gallery or museum to end up wandering through the rooms and giving everything a cursory glance without really getting to know what the object or painting is about: the intent behind its creation, what it depicts, and what meanings – hidden or otherwise – it might hold. At the Fitzwilliam Museum on 16 April, join experts and art enthusiasts for Art Speak, a lunchtime talk which allows you to learn the stories behind the pieces on display. It runs for half an hour from 1.15pm – meet at the Courtyard Entrance. Entry is free.



THE T ARTS INSIDER As a writer I love April, not only because it’s the month that gets you believing in the highly improbable, but I also get to go see amazing authors come and do their thing at Cambridge Wordfest, our city’s literary festival. Four years ago, I was lucky enough to be given a mentoring session with Cambridge novelist Michelle Spring at the festival, who inspired me to try the impossible and turn a short story into the first draft of a novel, Doing Up Cleopatra. What kind of super-fabulous festival in the city gets you writing novels? This spring I am going to try my hand at learning the art of manga with Sonia Leong. Go Wordfest! Show of the season has to be Quentin Blake at the Fitzwilliam Museum, Drawn By Hand. It’s so popular you can only go for super swift 20-minute slots – and even then they expect it to be fully in demand. So no sitting for hours on end gazing languidly at illustrations of Rosie’s Magic Horse (sorry). Having grown up with his illustrations of Roald Dahl’s The Witches, The Twits and George’s Marvellous Medicine – it’s a real treat to see what Quentin Blake has been up to in the last ten years. Go and savour every minute of his most inspiring work. There are regular events for families at the museum which get snapped up early on, so check the website for details. I’m super excited to see ten visual artists who work at the Fitzwilliam Museum – from freelance artists, to teachers and technicians – exhibiting with us here at the Art Salon this month, too. Organised by tour de force, education officer and artist Sarah Blake, it promises to be a show that gets you thinking. All are welcome – come and visit the show from 3 April; it follows the last few days of Lucy Graves’s solo show at the Art Salon – whose beautiful illustrations are a hit with music lovers in the city (showing 28 March until 2 April). We also have an inspiring show from Romsey Mill’s group of budding teenage artists taking their Art Award (opening 18 April). Plus we’re really excited about the first ever solo show in Cambridge from Art Salon resident artist Juno Doran, opening on 26 April. She will also be showing a Minotaur. Check out her website at Lovers of the highly improbable will also be thrilled to bits with the launch of a new troupe of real-life mermaids – performance

Ten visual artists join the Art Salon in April, including Penny Hewitt and Sonia Leong., plus there's a solo show by the Salon's own Juno Doran

artists Merlesque (www.realmermaids., who debuted at the Neon Moon burlesque night at Anstey hall back in December. This trio of sirens are also

Having grown up with Roald Dahl’s works, it’s a real treat to see what Quentin Blake has been up to SIGN UP TO THE EDIT NEWSLETTER AT CAMBSEDITION.CO.UK

appearing at Neon Moon’s Supper Club out at the Willow Tree in Bourn on 7 April – go forth to channel your inner Daryl Hannah, from 1980s classic, Splash. Enjoy all things mermaid-y – you never know, they may even go one step further, and get you believing the impossible. Have a fantastic April, all.

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WORDFEST It’s time to revel in the written word at Cambridge’s biannual celebration of literature – there’s something for every bookworm, culture vulture, aspiring author and stand-up comic

T’S THE EVENT OUR CITY’S many literature lovers await eagerly each spring and it’s back this month with a bang. After a triumphant ten-year celebration in 2012, the biannual festival has grown considerably and developed a large and loyal following, becoming a highlight of Cambridge’s events calendar – and this

year’s line-up is as diverse, intriguing and adventurous as ever. Festival director Cathy Moore promises that the first event in the second decade of Wordfest will “stimulate the mind, feed the soul and lift the spirits” with a giddy blend of politics, literature, history, poetry, comedy, science, psychotherapy and architecture. So, what’s on the agenda?


The festival kicks off on Friday 12 April, and a highlight of the opening day is sure to include a visit from Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie (pictured below). Author of bestselling books Purple Hibiscus (winner of the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize 2005) and Half of a Yellow Sun (winner of the Orange Prize 2007), this bona fide international literary sensation will discuss her keenly anticipated new novel Americanah – a powerful story of love, race and identity. Also up on Friday is a talk with one of Britain’s best-known environmental campaigners, local eco warrior Tony Juniper – who will introduce his book, What Has Nature Ever Done For Us. Juniper’s goal is to change the way we think about the earth – looking at the many ‘natural services’ (from naturally occurring recycling in soil to predators ridding us of unwanted pests), that keep the economy going; reaching the staggering conclusion that in financial terms these are worth double the global GDP each year – and ultimately, asking what happens when these start to run out. Atheist philosopher A C Grayling will be in town too, examining the arguments for and against religious belief and seeking a humanist alternative on which to base our moral principles. There’s more too, from a discussion between best-selling authors Allison Pearson and Deborah Moggach to a talk with esteemed Second World War historian Antony Beevor and a chat with comedian and poet Kate Fox.

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Kicking things off on Sunday morning will be a fascinating look at Facts are Sacred – the Guardian’s multi awardwinning datablog, which gives eyecatching visual representations of statistics, hosted by the newspaper’s news editor Simon Rogers. Also from the Guardian camp will be the former science editor Tim Radford, who will be joined by palaeontologist Richard Fortey for a special one-off Guardian Science Book Club meet. Later on Sunday meanwhile, Stephen Grosz will talk about his astonishing writing debut The Examined Life, which uses 50,000 hours of conversation to offer insight into the strangeness of human existence and the many ways in which we make ourselves unhappy. From people to buildings for a look at Rowan Moore’s book, Why We Build, which considers why architecture matters and why we find it so very interesting. Next up, the ‘P G Wodehouse




Have you ever wondered why so many great writers have been plagued by alcoholism? Olivia Laing has, and she’s been exploring the links between creativity and alcohol through the uding stories of some of the most esteemed figures in literature including Ernest Hemingway and F Scott Fitzgerald. Join her at 10am to learn about her findings. Religious beliefs will be the topic of another event on Saturday, though this time it’s the other side of the coin in the spotlight. Join Francis Spufford in a fierce and witty rebuttal of popular atheist thinkers, as he argues that Christianity and Christian emotions retain a fundamental importance in modern life. Former frontwoman of Everything But The Girl, Tracey Thorn will be in town on Saturday evening, candidly discussing three decades of highs and lows in the music industry, and introducing her memoir, Bedsit Disco Queen. A man who needs little introduction – international drugs baron, Oxford graduate and author of the worldwide best-selling autobiographical novel Mr Nice – Howard Marks (pictured above) will be at St John’s College on Saturday night. His seemingly endless supply of stories shows no signs of dwindling, and at this event the famously charming raconteur will introduce his latest work of fiction, The Score. Ending Saturday’s offerings on a high will be Funny Women – a showcase of female stand-up comics which includes Rowan Pelling, Viv Groskop, Julia Streets and Gabby Best. If you reckon you’ve got what it takes to get the crowds rolling in the aisles yourself, these funny ladies will also be hosting a comedy workshop earlier in the afternoon.


As ever, the kids are well catered for at Wordfest. There are plenty of events to delight little literature lovers from a bookmaking workshop to readings with some of the country’s best-loved storytellers. Highlights of the kids programme are sure to include an interactive session with Justine de Mierre, who will be celebrating classic picture book We’re Going On A Bear Hunt, the special dinosaur guests at Jeanne Willis’s (below) event and science-based fun with Nick Arnold, author of the Horrible Science series.


of Westminster’, sketch writer Simon Hoggart will be at Wordfest discussing House of Fun – a collection of his witty and wonderful work over the last 20 years. There’s much more happening as well: a star turn from Sandi Toksvig and a return of the Thinking Aloud series of discussions, which showcases the research of some of Cambridge’s leading academics – this time with a focus on cancer. Fifty years after her suicide, Wordfest will also dedicate an event to the enigma that was Sylvia Plath. Andrew Wilson will draw on her early poems and previously unseen private material to paint an intimate portrait of this troubled literary genius.


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In the first of a new series, Edition gets better acquainted with a group of local academics come stand-up comedians, Cambridge Bright Club CIENCE AND COMEDY MIGHT not seem like an obvious pairing, but at Cambridge Bright Club, the two are proving quite the double act. Set up by Andy Holding in 2011, it’s based on the London Bright Club, which gets scientists and other academics on stage to talk about their work in an interesting, engaging, and often hilarious way. “The original idea came from a guy called Steve Cross from University College London,” Andy explains. “He was working out how to engage more with the public, and suggested getting academics to do stand-up comedy. They trained people up and it’s since been featured in Time Out and The Guardian, always with great reviews. Andy, who works at the medical research laboratory for molecular biology at Addenbrooke’s, decided to create a local spin-off after coming across Bright Club at an awards event. They now put on regular shows, including one at Cambridge Science Festival last month, and one coming up on 12 April. Don’t worry though; you don’t have to be a molecular biology boffin to get the gags. It’s more like highbrow pub banter with your cleverest mate, covering everything from language and philosophy to aliens and swearing. The night is opened by a professional comedian, with the odd cabaret act (and some free sweets) thrown in for good measure. “People like Robin Ince and Dara O’Briain have been doing this sort of thing for a while, and there’s definitely a bit of a geek-cool thing going on at the moment,” muses Andy. “I think people can relate to something when you start explaining it through comedy. And because it’s interesting, you don’t have to be funny the whole time. You can have bits that are just ‘interesting’. Whereas when you go to an hour-long comedy set, if they don’t keep you laughing the whole time you’ll get bored because a lot of the stuff they’re talking about is actually quite superficial. So this works really well: we offer something that’s really different – and you definitely will not be bored.”

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He continues: “What really fascinates me is how science and life come together. I think everyone finds life incredible and is interested in learning more about it. The Large Hadron Collider, for example, really gets people’s curiosity. It’s about trying to understand the world around us.” As well as making science accessible to everyone, Andy is also hoping Bright Club will help break down the barriers between ‘town and gown’. “I’ve tried really hard not to market it just at the university,” he says. “There’s such a massive town/gown divide here but there’s no reason for it – I really want to break that down. The more we do things like this, hopefully, the more people will realise that people who’re in the university are just the same as everyone else – and the better the place will be.” As well as Bright Club, Andy has several other projects on the go including ThinkCon, a series of talks relating to critical thinking and covering everything from dealing with a zombie outbreak to issues like how the media and pornography portray sex and the effect of that, to Skeptics in the Pub – which, as the name suggests, takes brainy chat out of the lecture theatre and into places that sell booze. Sounds good to us. “We’re always looking for people to join us,” he says. “We have more people wanting to come and see it than we have academics wanting to perform. We’ve had 30-40 speakers join, but the aim is to get different people in all the time so there’s always someone different for audiences to see.” To academics out there who might be considering giving stand-up a go, Andy says, “The audiences are lovely. They want to have a good time and it’s a lovely environment – you get a huge amount out of it. You might even learn something interesting yourself, too. These events are as much for the people on stage as they are for the audience: we’re all the audience, really. It’s very much everyone learning from each other.”

Find out about their latest events, and listen to their rather good podcasts, at

IMAGES: 12 April is the next date for your diary for a stand-up gig with a dash of science


WHAT’S ON A round-up of events in and around Cambridgeshire for April




Time: 8pm Location: Cambridge Junction Price: £12.50 Description: The glamorous singer is back with a new album and tour, which she brings to J2 this month. Girl Talk is a sassy hit back against manufactured pop and, in her words, “a mission statement of what it’s like to be a woman”.

2-6 April MAURICE’S JUBILEE Time: 7.45pm, 2.30pm (Thurs & Sat) Location: Arts Theatre Price: £15-£27 Description: A touch of Alan Bennett wit and a cunning twist in the tale add to this funny and poignant play – a love triangle including Maurice, his wife and Her Majesty the Queen.

3-5 April RELIGION AND THE IDEA OF A RESEARCH UNIVERSITY Time: Times vary Location: Clare College Price: £50/£160 Description: What place does religion have in a modern, secular, research-based university? Join the discussion.

DOC BROWN Time: 8pm Location: Cambridge Junction Price: £12 APRIL Description: Comedian Doc Brown has made appearances on Russell Howard’s Good News, The Inbetweeners and Derek, and will soon be filling J3 with his cheeky take on hip-hop culture.


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7 April

9 April

BEGINNERS BREAD CLASS Time: 10am-2pm Location: Cambridge Cookery School Price: £110 Description: Learn how to make the perfect loaf, bap, focaccia or pizzette bianche at this one-day course that’ll teach you this eversatisfying skill for life.

BALLET CENTRAL Time: 7.45pm Location: ADC Price: £10/£12 Description: An exciting programme of ballet that features works by Mikaela Polley, Sharon Watson and Ballet Central’s founder, the late Christopher Gable.

8 April

10 April

BEN MONTAGUE Time: 8pm Location: Cambridge Junction Price: £8 Description: Ben’s debut single, ‘Haunted’, released in 2011, was a major radio hit. Now he has a new album, Tales Of Flying and Falling, which he’s showcasing at Cambridge Junction (J2).

OUR FATHERS Time: 7.30pm Location: Cambridge Junction Price: £8/£12 Description: Take a leap across the decades with Our Fathers at J2. The play relates different stories of fatherhood, taking inspiration from stand-up comedy, contemporary dance – and even The Sopranos.


5-6 April MILTON JONES Time: 8pm Location: Corn Exchange Price: £20 Description: Known for his loud shirts and killer one-liners, Milton Jones returns to the Corn Exchange stage with his live show, On The Road.

5, 12 & 26 April CAMBRIDGE FOLK CLUB Time: Doors 7.30pm Location: The Golden Hind on Milton Road Price: Various Description: Listen to a variety of folk bands and artists from aacross the country.

5 April S SIMON EVANS: FRIENDLY FIRE T Time: 8pm Location: Cambridge Junction Price: £12/£14 Description: One of comedy’s more intellectual characters tackles modern-age myths, from fairy tales to post-match analysis at Cambridge Junction’s J2. Nobody is safe from his gaze…


WEDDING OPEN DAY Time: 10am-4pm Location: Secret Garden, Burwash Manor Price: Free entry Description: An opportunity to explore the picturesque 1600 square foot marquee in its pretty walled garden, and meet the Secret Garden’s wedding specialists.

8-13 April

14 April

NOISES OFF Time: 7.45pm, 2.30pm (Thurs & Sat) Location: Arts Theatre Price: £15-£35 Description: Hailed as one of the greatest British comedies ever, it’s a riotous play within a play, exposing the backstage antics of a touring theatre company as they stumble (literally, at times) through rehearsals.

NACHTMUSIK Time: 7.30pm Location: West Road Concert Hall Price: £14-£27 Description: The highly regarded Academy of Ancient Music performs serenades and symphonies by Mozart and Hayden under Nicholas Collon’s baton, exploring how the night inspired their music.




Ca Cambridge Junction welcomes Simon Evans’s honest observations on 5 April, Cambridge Cookery School invites you ob to become a baker for the day on 7 April, and the ADC Theatre hosts Ballet Central on 9 April ho

16 April EUROPEAN UNION CHAMBER ORCHESTRA Time: 7.30pm Location: Corn Exchange Price: £12.50-£30 Description: Cellist Julian Lloyd Webber and conductor HansPeter Hofmann lead this concert of music by Elgar, Vivaldi and Schubert, plus Eric Whitacre’s The River Cam.

16-20 April WYRD SISTERS Time: 7.45pm Location: ADC Price: £7-£10 Description: Terry Pratchett’s wry story of Shakespeare’s witches as adapted for the stage by Cambridge theatre group Bawds. Surreal and fast-paced, it tells the story of Macbeth from the perspective of three dysfunctional witches. Suitable for ages 8+.

18 April THE SMELL OF ENVY Time: 7.30pm Location: Mumford Theatre Price: £5-£12.50 Description: A performance that investigates the neuroscience of smell, memory and place, created by Pigeon Theatre and Dr Colin Lever.

29 April

Time: 10am Location: Denny Abbey Price: £15 Description: Young artists aged 2-5 can get messy in the name of art at this fun tutor-led course, running every Wednesday from 17 April until 8 May.

20 April

23-27 April

WIRE SCULPTURE CLASS Time: 10am-4pm Location: White House Arts Price: £60 (inc. materials) Description: In a new course for the riverside studio, Jenny Goater will be teaching a daylong class on wire sculpture, packed with tricks, techniques and lots of inspiration.

FOLLIES Time: 7.45pm & 2.30pm Sat Location: ADC Price: £8-£12 Description: Broadway hit Follies comes to Cambridge, performed by the Pied Pipers – the local group behind last year’s The Sound of Music. Past memories are relived and ghosts resurface as members reunite on the eve of their theatre’s demolition. Expect showstopping dance numbers, iconic songs and beautiful costumes.

23 April JAMIE N COMMONS Time: 8pm Location: Portland Arms Price: £6 Description: Young blues singer Jamie N Commons, who has been earmarked as a ‘one to watch’ by The Guardian and counts Elvis Costello amongst his fans, visits the Portland Arms.



TOM CREAN: ANTARCTIC EXPLORER Time: 7.30pm Location: Mumford Theatre Price: £8.50-£12.50 Description: In the early 1900s, explorer Tom Crean embarked on famous and dangerous journeys, surviving Scott’s and Shackleton’s expeditions to the Antarctic. This award-winning show shares his experiences.


Time: 12.30pm/3pm Location: Corn Exchange Price: £12 Description: Steve the Monkey, Helen the Hippo and Tom the Crocodile will all be joining the playful pup to celebrate his birthday – and you’re invited too! The fun is brought to the Corn Exchange by premier children’s playwright David Wood in the form of a colourful musical production.


24 April ROSS SUTHERLAND Time: 7pm/8.30pm Location: Cambridge Junction Price: £8-£12 Description: Comedian Dies in the Middle of a Joke takes us to an 80s comedy club where comedian Joe Pops is dying a death. In this reenactment, you get to choose a role: will you be bouncer, barmaid, critic or the comedian himself?

30 April TAYLOR QUINTET Time: 1.15pm-2pm Location: Fitzwilliam Museum Price: Free – donations welcome Description: Composed just months before his death, Mozart’s late Spring Quartet in D major will be performed by leading student musicians in the Taylor Quintet. You’ll also be able to see a display of Mozart’s original manuscripts.

RICH HALL Time: 8pm Location: Corn Exchange Price: £15 Description: The grouchy but likeable American comic has become a regular on our screens, adding his unique deadpan observations to the likes of QI, Have I Got News For You and Live at The Apollo. Don’t miss his Cambridge appearance this month.

28-29 April BALLET BLACK Time: 7.45pm Location: Arts Theatre Price: £12.50-22.50 Description: Cassa Pancho’s award-winning dance company takes to the stage once more with a mixed bill of premiers from exciting up-and-coming choreographers, danced by skilled artists of black and Asian descent.


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ant to shape up, boost your wellbeing and increase your fitness? You’re in luck, because this month we’ve teamed up with Nuffield Health to give away a year’s free gym membership worth £749, which is usable at all 65 of Nuffield’s healthcare centres across the UK. To help make the most out of the membership, our winner will begin their journey to a healthier lifestyle with a free Health MOT, which measures blood pressure, BMI, cholesterol and blood glucose levels, as well as assessing your lifestyle, including

sleep and hydration. After this, a personal wellbeing advisor will create a bespoke action plan to help you manage and improve your overall health and fitness levels. To make those goals a reality, our winner will have access to Nuffield’s state-of-the-art healthcare centres, which are fully equipped, not only with top-class facilities, but also knowledgeable healthcare professionals. To be in with a chance of winning this fantastic prize, visit Terms & conditions apply.

Nuffield Health Fitness and Wellbeing Centre Cambridge, 213 Cromwell Road, Cambridge CB1 3BA Call 01223 859 420. Download a free day pass online at


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Independent of the Month

LIMONCELLO A little corner of Italy on Mill Road, this brilliant local delicatessen is packed full of delicious delicacies and easy to fall in love with, says Jennifer Shelton IF YOU LIVE ANYWHERE NEAR MILL ROAD, you’ll probably know Limoncello. Proprietor Steve Turvill probably knows you, too. A friendly deli stocking produce you won’t find anywhere else in town, Limoncello – with its cheery green and yellow front – is a ray of Italian sunshine within the bustling Mill Road community. It was awarded Deli of the Year in 2011, and to my mind is precisely what a local deli should be. I’m here to find out what makes it work, what inspires Steve and how it all began – but it’s actually quite challenging conducting my interview, competing as I am with a stream of customers who pop in for a chat as well as their groceries. I’m perched at the bar, enjoying one of Steve’s coffees, and find myself joining in: one chap has come in to pick up a panettone and drop off a racing tip; another has come back in search of a missing glove. A couple of Italian students duck in for a (proper) espresso and end up staying for a long chat – and delightedly discover that Steve stocks a specialist calamari that one of them recognises from home. Another lady tucks in to the irresistible pesto samples, telling us about her choir’s upcoming performance. Steve opened Limoncello in 1997, having fallen in love with Italian food – in particular, panettone. “It’s a lovely, sweet, vanilla-y bread,” he explains, handing me a chunk. “The only place you could buy it was a little deli round the corner from me called Pasta Fresca. It closed, and I bought it – and it became Limoncello.” “I always wanted my own business,” he says. “I love the sense of freedom and the ability to make my own destiny. I remember we first opened on a Saturday and it was really busy; we’ve still got customers coming in today who I recognise from that first day. We get a lot of repeat custom here. I always think Mill Road is like a little area of London.” Despite his English upbringing, Italian food was a big part of Steve’s childhood. “My mum used to cook wonderful lasagne and pasta dishes – I think Italian food is a staple for lots of people because it’s so quick and easy to make, and it tastes great. I’ve got three boys and they can all make pizza now.” The shelves at Limoncello are heaving with everything from Italian biscuits to fresh pasta, oils and sauces, all carefully selected, with many imported from Italy.

“We’ve built up a list of about 120 different suppliers over the years,” he says. “About 90% comes from Italy, which means we can get the best products. We’ve invented the word ‘eatucation’ – we want people to try things and know where they’ve come from. The key thing is taste. We’re always looking for new products and expanding our knowledge too.” The authentic cakes from Sicily, bottles of Limoncello (of course), delicious home-made pesto and hand-marinated olives are always popular, as is the extensive selection of meats and cheeses (which puts supermarket offerings to shame). You can also sit in and enjoy a meal too, with pizzas, fresh pasta and delicious desserts on offer, as well as a tipple if you fancy (they’re licensed to serve alcohol). There’s no doubt that Steve and the team have a great business on their hands. He loves the area and the customers (he was offered a unit in the Grand Arcade, but turned it down).


There are plans on the cards to expand the shop and Steve is also leading a community campaign to open Romsey Lakes to the public (find out more on page 7 of this issue). So, what’s the secret to Limoncello’s success? “It’s because we’re customer focused,” he says. “We’re open all week, we’re online, we’re accessible, we’re friendly… and we’re clear about what we are. We don’t want to become just another café; the heart of the business is the deli and the products we stock. And we’re different. I don’t think we sell anything here that you could buy in another shop.” Limoncello, 212 Mill Road, Cambridge CB1 3NF, 01223 507036 Independent of the Month in association with...

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5 of the best...


It’s often said that Cambridge is sorely lacking in destinations to indulge in that all-important, lazy, late-morning feast. But we’ve done some digging and beg to differ. Nicola Foley rounds up the best brunch spots in town


HOTEL DU VIN ‘Le Brunch’ at Hotel du Vin on Trumpington Street is quite the spectacle – and definitely the one that's got local foodies talking recently. Served in the elegant, French-styled bistro, this feast kicks off with the soup of the day, followed by the arrival of the (epic) French Market Table, a lavish centerpiece which heaves with charcuterie, freshly baked artisan breads and even seafood. Next up (yes, really) come the ‘Main Courses’ – including salmon hollandaise, omelettes and roast buffalo mozzarella and plum tomato tart. Finally, a dessert is included in the (very reasonable) £19.95, meaning you can round off your über-indulgent brunch with apple crumble, crème brûlée or a full cheese board. Hotel du Vin is also one of the only places in town that you can enjoy a proper Bloody Mary with your brunch – which might just be a deal breaker.

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A relative newcomer to our brunching scene, Bill’s has established itself as something of a favourite for its buzzing, family friendly vibe and charmingly higgledy-piggledy décor. The shelves groan under the weight of jams, pickles, oils, cordials, chocolates, sweets and Bill’s own brand of beers – and you can shop while you dine, making coming away empty-handed a nigh-on impossible feat. The award-winning breakfast and brunch offerings include a full English, poached eggs on toasted muffins, Benedict, Florentine or Royale style (with smoked salmon, hollandaise and pumpkin seeds), as well as home-made blueberry and buttermilk pancakes, which come drenched in maple syrup and topped with fresh strawberries and banana. If you’re trying to be good, there’s the ‘Bill’s healthy breakfast board’, which consists of granola, honey, organic yoghurt and fresh fruit skewers. Breakfast/brunch is served from 8am until 12pm on weekdays and until 1pm on Saturdays and Sundays.



STICKYBEAKS With a brilliant central location on Hobson Street, fantastic food and a lovely bright and cheerful décor, Stickybeaks is the perfect spot for a late-morning bite. The menu changes weekly so you’re always guaranteed tempting new dishes to try, but typical offerings include things like French toast with crispy bacon, banana, maple syrup and crème fraîche; fried eggs served with black pudding; Gruyère potato cake and roasted cherry tomatoes; and a smoked haddock, sweetcorn and mascarpone tart. If you’ve got a sweet tooth, the berry and banana trifle with granola will send you to heaven – as will the picture-perfect array of amazing cakes, which are served all day long (ideal for a mid-shopping spree rejuvenation session). Brunch is served daily from 10am until 4pm, and is also available to take away.

URBAN LARDER This quirky little Mill Road favourite embodies all that is great about our local independents: quirky, friendly and bursting with quality local produce. There’s no fixed brunch menu, but always a selection of delicious offerings available so you can pick and choose. Current favourites include the Greek spanakopita (created by Yannis – a local Cretan baker), which comes in spinach and feta or potato, courgette and herb varieties, as well as fresh bread and Portuguese custard tarts from the lovely nearby Norfolk Street Bakery. Brekkie staples like scrambled eggs, tomatoes, mushrooms and great coffees are also on offer. If you’ve got room for something sweet, try one of local lady Afternoon Tease’s delicious cakes, who delivers such delights as the (legendary) p g chocolate and Guinness sponge.

CAMBRIDGE BREW HOUSE It’s a brand spanking new addition to the Cambridge dining scene, and one which has immediate appeal for its city centre location on King Street. It’s got a lot more going for it than that though, with its funky interior, gallery kitchen and buzzing atmosphere. This place uses lots of great local companies as well, from the Norfolk Street Bakery to Northrop Butchers and the Cambridge Cheese Company – so you know that the food is top-notch.

Breakfast and brunch are served from 9am, with bacon sarnies, a Full Monty with Cumberland sausages, streaky bacon, fried tatties, beans, mushrooms and plenty of toast (there’s also a vegan fry-up option), as well as classics like eggs Florentine and eggs Benedict. You can even (and we massively approve of this) take a trip back to your childhood and go for eggs and soldiers. We recommend partnering that with a rather more grown-up Bloody Mary.

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This month Jennifer Shelton visits CAU, the stylish new Argentinean-inspired steakhouse on Bene't Street that's bringing a flavour of Buenos Aires to Cambridge AKING UP RESIDENCE in the former Barclay’s building on Bene’t Street, CAU (pronounced ‘cow’), arrived with a bang in January this year. A small chain with branches in Guildford, Kingston and now Cambridge, the restaurant specialises in top-quality steak dishes, cooked from scratch on-site and taken from their tenderly reared Aberdeen Angus cattle. “We have had a spectacular response to the launch of CAU in Cambridge,” Charlie McLean, CAU’s managing director, says. “The restaurant is unlike any other in the city, not only because of its innovative, funky design but also due to the Argentinian menu, with an offering that would fit right in on the streets of urban Buenos Aires. The addition of the Josper grill means that all meat at CAU is expertly grilled, from the chicken and pork through to the beef bred on the Pampas.” We swung by on a busy Thursday night, taking a seat upstairs in their stylish black, white and metallic-look restaurant. The design is striking, with sleek swivel seats and padded benches that give a slightly retro, American diner feel (there are milkshakes on the menu too). Elsewhere, there’s a playful suggestion of green fields and pastures new in the turf-print panels on the ceiling and fluffy clouds cheering up the walls. The menu revealed a range of mouthwatering sounding burgers served in brioche buns, as well as marinated pork cutlets, baby back ribs, steamed mussels and an interesting selection of sausages that included Argentinian chorizo, spicy lamb Merguez and venison. Despite the emphasis on meat, there was also a thoughtful, and equally tasty, range of options on offer for my veggie friend, with dishes like aubergine lasagne and three mushroom risotto.

IMAGES A mouthwatering menu awaits at CAU’s funky city centre restaurant

So, you don’t have to have steak at CAU, but it felt sacrilegious not to, especially on a first visit. A cheery and knowledgeable waiter relayed my options, and after umming and ahhing over the sirloin and, his favourite, the tapa de cuadril signature dish, I bowed to expert opinion and chose the latter. A type of rump steak, this one’s a more delicate option and looks a little like rashers of bacon when it arrives, served with triple-cooked chips in a cute individual fryer. But don’t be disheartened by its no frills appearance, it tasted exquisite: juicy, complex and tender. There’s always one who can’t resist the biggest steak on the menu. True to form, one of our party decided to take on the tira de ancho, or ‘king of steaks’, a huge length of rib eye with a distinct, smoky flavour. Delicious – though potentially dangerous if you want to leave room for dessert (which you definitely do). Despite the amount of food already on the table, our party also fell a little in love with the


side orders, which range from courgette and onion tempura through sautéed mixed beans to rich and indulgent truffled macaroni cheese. The dessert menu yielded yet more irresistible offerings, and I went straight for the chocolate fondant – perfectly gooey and served with creamy vanilla ice cream. Even our king of steaks champion still had room for a white chocolate and lavender mousse – a nice, light option with unusual floral tones. The huge cornflake ice cream sundae, with its layers of chocolate brownie and dulce de leche, was also a hit with the big kids within our group. Price wise, it’s very reasonable for the quality of cuts compared with many other good steak restaurants. Service is excellent, and the fun décor makes it a perfect place for dinner with friends. In short: it’s the steakhouse Cambridge has been waiting for. CAU, 15 Bene’t Street, CB2 3QN, 01223 357000,

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HE EGG IS A TRUE MARVEL of nature, a conveniently packaged fast food that is not only an essential ingredient in the kitchen but a meal in itself. Witness the success of recent butter adverts to see the appeal of a hastily made omelette as an attractive alternative to the lure of the takeaway, or the beautiful simplicity of a fried egg slid onto a slice of hot buttered toast, the yolk just waiting to be burst. Recent years have also seen the egg as a suitable poster boy for a successful animal welfare campaign and it won’t be long before the battery egg is consigned to the compost heap of history. It’s not just a good thing for chickens but consumers as well since there is a world of difference in the flavour between a truly free-range egg and one laid in intensive conditions – a difference I have come to know well since becoming a chicken owner five years ago. The egg may be simple to cook but it’s also an ingredient that is hard to master. A perfectly cooked fried egg – one where the white is set all the way through, the yolk remains tantalisingly liquid and there is no stringy, snotty quality to the tricky part where the two meet – is no mean feat. A

Images courtesy of Waitrose

Simple, l ffast, goodd ffood, eggs are eggstra-ordinarily versatile. Local chef and restaurateur Alex Rushmer prepares a battalion of soldiers

perfect boiled egg is even trickier, putting paid to the patronising epithet about useless cooks being unable to boil an egg. Many chefs test out the innate cooking abilities of new recruits by asking them to cook an egg and famed New York-based chef Daniel Boulud measures the competency of his cooks by asking them to make him a ‘simple omelette’ – a task fraught with difficulty. So, chefs love eggs but it takes skill and originality to raise them up from humble fast food to gastronomic fare. Many of the finest dishes in the world have eggs at their heart and recent advances in cooking techniques have seen a boom in high-end preparations. A meal at Thomas Keller’s French Laundry in Yountville, California, begins with a signature truffled egg custard served in a perfectly hollowed out egg shell; Heston Blumenthal is famed for his bacon and egg ice cream at The Fat Duck; René Redzepi, head chef at Noma, uses the bland richness of an egg as a foil for an array of wild herbs and Le Gavroche, home of Michel Roux Jr, is still celebrated for its decadently rich cheese soufflé. But perhaps my favourite of all is the slow-cooked egg made famous by David Chang of Momofuku.


It takes skill and originality to elevate eggs from humble fast food to gastronomic fare The Chinese have been slow-cooking eggs for centuries but only recently has this method been taken on by classically trained chefs, thanks in part to the obsessive work of molecular gastronomist Hervé This. Egg yolk and egg white behave differently at different temperatures. By slowing down the cooking process it is possible to cook an egg to a wonderfully wobbly and rich doneness throughout – the white remains a little gooey and the yolk incredibly unctuous with an almost custardlike consistency. Exhaustive testing in laboratory conditions (not by me, I hasten to add) has resulted in consensus that cooking in a precisely controlled, temperatureregulated water bath at 64.4°C is the exact temperature at which to achieve the ‘perfect’ doneness of an egg. Alternatively, you could just crack it into a frying pan.

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HEAVEN ON OEUF Alex Rushmer knocks up a duo of simple but delicious recipes, both with the humble egg at their heart

Fried duck egg & truffled mushrooms on toasted sourdough A DUCK EGG always feels like a special occasion egg – richer and larger than a regular hen’s egg, it is perfect for a lazy Sunday brunch. The duxelles can be made ahead of time and finished with truffle oil right at the end of the cooking process. This is a regular, and very popular, fixture on our menu where we often finish it with a little grated truffle for an extra hint of decadence.

Ingredients 200g finely chopped button mushrooms 1 banana shallot, peeled and finely chopped 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped 2 sprigs of thyme 25g unsalted butter Sea salt Black pepper Splash of truffle oil

1 duck egg per person Day-old sourdough bread

Step-by-step guide


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1. For the duxelles, melt the butter in a frying pan over a moderate heat and cook the chopped shallot for ten minutes, stirring regularly and taking care not to colour or burn it. Add the garlic and thyme and cook for a further minute before adding the mushrooms. Cook for 15 minutes, stirring often and cooking out any moisture. Season with salt and pepper and finish with a dash of truffle oil. Keep in a warm place while the egg cooks. 2. Toast your bread and heat a non-stick frying pan over a moderate heat. Add two tablespoons of cooking oil and crack the egg into the pan. Cook slowly and spoon the hot oil over the egg, paying particular attention to the point where yolk and white meet. Cook for three to five minutes depending on the size of the egg. 3. Spoon the duxelles onto the toast and top with the egg. Season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately.



Saffron & vanilla custard tarts I WAS RECENTLY INTRODUCED to the delights of the Norfolk Street Bakery. After asking what their specialty was I was pointed in the direction of the most amazing pasties de nata, Portuguese custard tart, I have ever tasted. This is my version, flavoured with saffron, which gives the custard an amazing colour as well as flavour.

Step-by-step guide 1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. 2. Begin by making a sugar syrup – combine the caster sugar and water together and add the saffron and vanilla. Bring to the boil and remove from the heat. Mix together the flour and cornflour with enough milk to make a smooth paste. Bring the remainder of the milk to a gentle boil and pour it onto the flour paste. Whisk then return to a clean pan and heat until the mixture thickens. Mix the egg yolks and egg together, combine the thickened milk and sugar syrup then pour the liquid over the eggs. Pour into a jug and allow to cool slightly.

20 mins COOK TIME

Ingredients 3. To make the pastry cases cut the puff pastry in half and roll out each piece into a square about 5mm thick. Place one on top the other and roll into a tight Swiss roll. Cut 1.5cm thick slices from the pastry sausage and turn each one onto its flat side. You should see a spiral. Roll each of these into a 10cm round then grease a muffin tray with butter or sunflower oil. Line each cup of the muffin tray with a round of pastry and pour the custard into the pastry cases. Bake for about 20 minutes until the pastry is cooked and the custard is set. Leave to cool at room temperature and dust with icing sugar.


250g caster sugar 100ml water A pinch of saffron Seeds from 1 vanilla pod 250ml milk 30g plain flour 20g cornflour 4 egg yolks 1 whole egg 1 block ready-made puff pastry

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A monthly round-up of gastronomic goings-on in Cambridge and the surrounding area

Sourdough at Urban Larder

The First Rule Supper Club It might look like a typical Cambridge Victorian terraced house, but inside, there are wonderful plans brewing. Plans borne out of a love of good food, good wine and, above all, good company. The First Rule Supper Club, the latest addition to the city’s secret supper club scene, was (rather fittingly), originally conceived at a dinner party held by one of the two future hosts, Pascale Bozzi, and attended by the other, Adam Byrne. The duo share a creative flair, a passion for entertaining and, evidently, a talent for multitasking; acting as both hosts and chefs at their clandestine soirées. Different backgrounds mean that they’re able to bring different skills

things to the table: Pascale, of French heritage, provides a knowledge and reverence of good food and fine wine whilst Adam, whose philosophy that food is the ultimate crossover between art and science, lends an experimental flavour to proceedings. Together, they design their food with the care and attention to detail of the many artists they admire. They are holding an event on 5 April (£35 per head), which includes a four-course meal with wine and coffee, plus live music and a liberal sprinkling of the unexpected. They call it ‘the ultimate dine-in-but-out’ experience. Book online at or email

Get to grips with sourdough at Urban Larder on 23 April (6.30-9.30pm) at a special Sourdough Evening, where you’ll be taught how to identify different sorts, learn what they go with and where they come from, and get involved in making them too. The evening will be hosted by Peter Voshol of the Loaf for Life Bakery, who will take you through the stages of making and maintaining a sourdough starter (which you can take home); which flours you can use and how to make a simple, nutritious and most importantly, tasty loaf in a swift amount of time. You’ll taste lots of different sourdough cultures, from 200-year-old recipes to modern ones, and learn to appreciate the differences in structure to the final dough. Sourdough is about long, slow fermentation and the final product serves as a great accompaniment to all manner of meals. This relaxed, introductory course will just touch upon the basics, but should equip you with the skills to go on and make your own lovely loaves at home. Call 01223 212462, email or visit

KIDS’ SUSHI-MAKING CLASS K It super healthy, delicious and simple (not to mention fun) to It’s make. Teach your kids a brand new cookery skill this month at m Cambridge Cookery School, where the skilled team are running C ssushi-making sessions for children aged ten and over on 2 April ((10am-12.30pm). Young chefs will be taught rolling techniques aand create lots of different fillings. Also on the menu are miso ssoup, chicken yakitori and salad with ginger soy dressing. Classes are £55 per child. For more information visit C w


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The Red Cow: Pub of the Year



The Red Cow pub in Chrishall has been awarded the prestigious Pub of the Year Award by Les Routiers. Champions of locally sourced ingredients and friendly, professional service, Les Routiers identified the pub as an establishment that lived up to the high standards required to be worthy of the accolade. The Red Cow aims to provide a place for eating, drinking and socialising for all members of the local and wider community, with a large selection of great food and drink. They were also recently awarded a plaque by Pub is The Hub, as a pub that ‘has been recognised for its important role at the heart of community services’. Visit their Facebook page, follow them on Twitter @theredcow O F TH E Y E A or see the website for more details, UB

Over at d’Arry’s… Each Thursday at King Street favourite d’Arry’s Cookhouse & Wine Shop, the chefs put together a gourmet sharing platter of pork cuts, served with delicious sides and perfect for a sociable evening out with friends. On the menu is crispy pork belly, sticky slow-roast, smoked ham hock, Porkers sausages, red cabbage ’n’ bacon and a hearty dollop of creamy mash. Throw in a tipple from their collection of Aussie wines from the world-renowned d’Arenberg vineyard and you’ve got yourself a great night out. It’s £25 all-in for a place at Pull a Pig Apart.

Coming soon! Pub culture is part of our Great British heritage, and one local duo is on a mission to bring beer back to its roots by creating a brand new venue in Cambridge, a free house serving real ales alongside hearty, home-prepared food. The Pint Shop is the brainchild of Richard Holmes and Benny Peverrli, and is scheduled to be up and running this summer. It will feature a Public Bar for drinking and snacking (think simple food prepared in front of you and beer served straight from the barrels), and The Parlour, a more refined space with beautiful furniture where you can have a proper sit-down meal. The pair chose Cambridge, Rich’s hometown, as the base for their pub, which they’ll be basing on the original ‘Beer Houses’, or ‘Tom and Jerry Shops’, as they were known. “We’ll buy in craftbrewed beer from small brewers in the spirit of those original Beer Houses,” say the pair. “There’ll also be some awesome gin and whisky, killer comfort food, cooked over a fire, just as it was in 1830, delivered with a bunch of folks who are fun, love beer and live for food.” Rich and Benny are currently in the process of securing a venue, but you can expect it to be somewhere central, with heaps of character. Watch this space. Follow them on Twitter @PintShop

Little Chef Cookery Classes After a successful stint hosting children’s cookery classes as part of the Love Food festival, The Larder at Burwash Manor is holding another week of classes for little chefs at its marquee. There’ll be fairy cake decorating sessions, calzone making and even clay modelling with a foodie twist going on all week from 2 until 6 April. Cooking is a great life skill and the earlier it’s learnt the better, and the Larder’s team of chefs will be on hand to pass on their know-how to the next generation of home bakers – and maybe even the odd future chef. It’s also great fun, and the events coincide handily with the Easter holidays, so you can drop them off on your way to work or have a cup of tea and a look round the shops while you wait. For more information, see

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This month, fashion blogger extraordinaire Esme Benjamin surveys three directional new trends that will have you tearing up your style rule book ASOS JACKET WITH QUILTING AND EMBROIDERY £65 ASOS


Eastern promise This season’s collections were full of Eastern promise. Designers like Celine and Prada showed Samurai belts, kimono cuts and


intricate Japanese-inspired red prints to o grand grrand effect. Nod to the trend with these the ese orientaloriental inspired earrings from Accessorize or go for a




one of East’s floral jackets. bolder statement ssttatement sta tatement in o bohemian vibe to make the Opt pt for a bohem mian traveller t look work on this side of the globe.




Spring is the perfect time to add an injection of eye-wateringly bright colour blocking into your wardrobe. Take style notes from Gucci, Kenzo and Burberry who flaunted cobalt blues, emerald greens, fuchsia pinks and canary yellow head to toe. Thankfully

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there’s no shortage of on-budget bud udget dazzling pieces – buy this smart emerald double-breasted blaze blazer zer from Reiss and team with a lime-hued House of Fraser top and statement-making Topshop wedges.







It might sound mad, but for the sartorially gutsy the tricky trend to try this spring is the dungaree. The current predilection for all things 90s is still going strong thanks to the collections of House of Holland (which showed acid-rave print dungaree shorts), Margaret Howell (who also offered up pinafore dresses) and Phillip Lim (who plumped for fierce, full-length leather ones). Copy-cat the look on the high street with a little assistance from ASOS, River Island and Urban Outfitters – or opt for a braver fabric choice like leather if you're feeling adventurous.




Cambridge Edition Edi i | April A il 2013 | 43









If you colour you eased eas e ased ed yourself you y ours rsel elff in into to ccol olou ourr la last st year with a pair of coloured chinos here and a bright T-shirt there then it’s time to step things up a gear. This spring, designers are proposing primary shades from top to toe,

including dramatic red at Etro and incl in clud ud colour-blocked yellow and blue at Louis Vuitton. Go for bright separates from Farah Vintage, Topman and Matalan to get the same look on a pocket-friendly budget.





The prevailing sportswear trend has inspired the ubiquitous popularity of the bomber jacket this season. From puffy to minimalist, casual to directional – designers including Gucci, Versace


and Dior all put their spin on this staple piece. Opt for a denim look version from ASOS, a metallic number from River Island or a sporty classic from River Island to follow suit.

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SS13 beauty trend report Edition rounds up the top spring/summer beauty trends emerging from the catwalks, demonstrating how to achieve the looks on a high street budget…


Image courtesy of MAC

MAC took the 90s as inspiration at the Roberto Cavalli SS13 show, with Smoulder Eye Kohl used with a smokybrown shadow up to the brow and under the eye. We love the modern twist on the trend: coupling it with a natural lip – but if you feel like going for fullon grunge, try Rimmel’s Lasting Finish Matte Lipstick by Kate Moss in shade 107. While you may not want to leave hair unwashed, try got2b Volumizing Style Powder by Schwarzkopf for a matte, scrunched look.



A burst of fluoro is bang on trend for this season and a super quick route to a very modern, very eye-catching look. Try fluorescent eyeliner on your lower lids and keep the rest of your face neutral for a really current look – these pencils from Stargazer give a bright finish, can be used on lips as well and won’t break the bank at just £3 each. Colour pop lips are another way of achieving the look: Bobbi Brown’s key look for this season is a combination of hot pink and vivid red – gorgeous paired with fresh, dewy skin. ILLAMASQUA LIPSTICK PALETTE £34 WWW.ILLAMASQUA.COM




Image courtesy of MAC



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Image courtesy of Derek Lam



this season's hottest looks

Embrace the new season and indulge in the plethora of fresh and pretty hues so well suited to this time of year. Keep skin smooth and glowing with a pearlescent primer such as Benefit’s Girl meets Pearl for a dewy golden base, and finish off with Bobbi Brown’s gorgeous Brightening Finishing Powder. Nail polish is a quick way to add a little pastel to your look too: Mavala’s 60s-inspired mini bottles are a nice option and were used on the Holly Fulton London Fashion Week SS13 show.


THE NATURAL LOOK Pack those heavy foundations away and dust off the tinted moisturisers or BB creams for a gentle hint of colour with a flawless finish. If you’re in the mood for a splurge, Crème de la Mer’s fluid tint glides on smoothly to leave your skin beaming and there’s even an SPF included in case

the sun dares to make an appearance. Add a highlighter to illuminate cheekbones – our favourite is the classic Benefit High Beam – whilst MAC’s brand new Mineralize Rich lipstick in the nude Posh Tone will top off your natural look, as seen on the Badgley Mischka catwalk. CRÈME DE LA MER SPF FLUID TINT £60 JOHN LEWIS



nberg Image courtesy of Diane Von Furste



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Edition takes a look at the latest happenings in the buzzing local property market

Barn-style homes at Great Kneighton You might think of new homes as being more practical than stylish, arranged as they often are in uniform rows and sometimes lacking the character you find in older, more established homes. But a new collection of properties on the Great Kneighton development in Trumpington is challenging all that. Countryside Properties has created a range of striking properties, drawing on the traditional Suffolk barn for inspiration. They start with The Holbrook, a quirky two-bedroom, two-storey house with versatile open-plan accommodation, which comes in three styles. The three-bedroom Dudley is a more traditional option, perfect for a family, and if you’d prefer four bedrooms, check out the two Chestnut styles which come with a gorgeous top-floor master suite. At the top end of the scale is The Hinton: an impressive six-bedroom family house, with accommodation arranged over three floors and large, floor-to-ceiling windows flooding the rooms with light. The homes have been launched just this month. For more information call 01223 846650 or visit

CAMBRIDGE VS OXFORD The age-old rivalry between Cambridge and Oxford doesn’t just exist on the river or in academia; it’s also present when it comes to property, with Cambridge shaping up rather better than our neighbours. The Cambridge property market has seen a boom in the last year, with large detached family homes in particular proving resilient to price drops seen elsewhere. This, say Fine & Country, is mainly a result of the London ‘ripple effect’ and the high interest in quality detached homes that are in short supply. But why are Londoners choosing our city over comparable ones like Oxford or Bath? Cambridge prices increased in 2010 by 17%, the third highest university town, yet Oxford’s price increases were not high enough to feature in the report from mortgage lender, Halifax. Yet Cambridge prices remain comparably more affordable than Oxford’s.

Over the last five years, property sales in Oxford were 43% lower than in Cambridge, with a staggering 16,149 houses sold in our city in contrast to Oxford’s 9,289, according to data collected by website Zoopla. There is a faster rise in value for property in Cambridge, making the investment opportunity greater. On top of this, the Cambridge property buy-to-let market has continued to outperform the rest of the country with capital values rising by 30% since 2009 ( What’s more, the commute from Cambridge to London is easier, with faster, more frequent trains. On a national level, Cambridge was the best performing location after London in 2012, yet the difference in price between them is over £100k on average. Londoners are selling up their city townhouses for better value homes in Cambridge. Properties in Cambridge


will continue to benefit from the basic law of supply and demand due to the desirability and price on offer, making investing in Cambridge a wise decision.

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Pink Geranium A well-known local restaurant – once a favourite dining spot for Prince Charles no less – has come onto the market in Melbourn. The Michelin-starred Pink Geranium, a Grade II listed building, has been transformed into a striking country house, boasting bags of character and plenty of fine original features intact throughout. “The design of the house has been meticulously carried through to create a landmark property in a delightful setting opposite the parish church,” says Richard Freshwater of Cheffins in Cambridge, who is handling the marketing. “The kitchen is fitted with a range of units from contemporary German designer Kuch, featuring Siemens appliances and a central island. As a further example of the quality of fittings, the master en suite has a doubleended Duravit bath with Travertine marble surround. It’s luxury personified.” The guide price is £900,000. For more information, contact Cheffins on 01223 214214

NOW’S THE TIME TO INVEST IN PROPERTY It’s common knowledge that Cambridge house prices have held up well against the recession, and now the Land Registry has announced an improvement in the housing market across the country, with house prices increasing by 1.7% throughout 2012. With this likely to increase, or remain steady throughout this year, now could be an ideal time to buy. “Unlike other surveys based on mortgage approvals, these figures are based on actual sales made,” says Annette Cole, sales and marketing director for property developers Crest Nicholson. “Potential buyers can rest assured that they are a true reflection and that the property market is strengthening and becoming more robust.” The report coincides with the launch of several new duplex apartments at Kaleidoscope, close to Cambridge railway station. “Cambridge has survived the economic downturn exceptionally well with property continuing to sell successfully,” adds Annette. “We have sold a high number of apartments at Kaleidoscope to owner-occupiers and investors: due to the thriving city centre, easy access to London [by train], the universities, the Science Park and medical campus at Addenbrooke’s, demand for properties has always been and will continue to be high.”

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A range of one and two-bedroom duplexes and apartments can be found at the new Cyan and Aqua Buildings, all of which have quiet locations and stylish, contemporary interiors. They start at £250,000. Andrew Tucker, head of residential lettings for Bidwells, says: “With less new build taking place in the city centre, choice for owner-

occupiers and investors alike is reasonably limited; particularly for those looking for a highquality yet low-maintenance property – such as those at Kaleidoscope. For investors we have extensive waiting lists of would-be renters at Kaleidoscope; all indications are that demand will not dissipate any time soon.”



BLOOMA MORETTA CHAIR, £60, BENCH, £99, ROCKING CHAIR, £69, and COFFEE TABLE, £40, B&Q (08456 096688;

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TO RELAX Smarten up your garden for summer with the latest outdoor furniture, from resort-style sofas to cosy tables for two, says Emily Brooks arden designers think of their creations in terms of two elements, hard and soft landscaping – with the hard landscaping (walls, pathways, paving) as the bones, and the soft landscaping (the plants) as the flesh that brings it all to life. But there is a third element that is just as important, and it’s the one that allows you to sit still and actually enjoy all your hard work: the furniture. The right furniture can make a statement that enhances the style of your garden, whether it’s a sculptural contemporary space or a soft profusion of cottage planting. It also makes a statement of purpose: low-down beds and beanbags say lazy lounging, while a table for ten is for the homeowner who loves big sociable gatherings. “Furniture plays a key role in your garden, as it creates a living area outdoors, enhancing space and making use of it in a new way,” says Lee Adams, managing director of contemporary garden furniture specialists Alexander Francis (01173 255247; And as with every major design decision, choosing garden furniture is about putting the practical stuff first. “The two main points that every customer should think about are the size of the space, and how they would like to use it,” says Adams. “Secondary to that is the durability and maintenance of the furniture, and finally, choosing the style that best suits the customer and their home.” It can feel like garden furniture is stuck in a time warp, with your local garden centre pushing the same teak and rattan styles that haven’t changed for 30 years. There’s nothing wrong with these enduring design classics, but if you look harder you will see that there has been a subtle evolution. For example, resort-


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CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT THE SUPREME NEST OF TABLES, £250, Graham and Green (08451 306622; GREY WOODEN HINGED BENCH, £440, Flora Furniture (01302 7111166; www. ILLUMINATED FIBREGLASS STOOLS, £249, Ingarden (01732 832299; www.ingarden. ANTIQUED RED BISTRO SET, £145, Burwash Secret Garden (01223 260040; www.burwashmanor. com) EMU SNOOZE CHAIRS, £129 each, John Lewis (08456 049049; NAVAJO LOUNGER MADE FROM FSC-CERTIFIED WOOD, £299, John Lewis (08456 049049;

style, sofa-like seating sets are gaining hugely in popularity, thanks to the comfort factor of an upholstered seat as well as the glamorous style statement they make. There are also more curves around, whether an elegant, waisted rattan tub chair or the colourful curly details of a steel bench. There’s been a big move towards creating spaces that feel more like an extension of

the house than an extension of the garden – outdoor ‘rooms’ with a boundary to define them (whether than means a woven wicker wall or a temporary gazebo), furniture that looks more like the sofas and chairs you might get inside, and accessories such as lighting and heating that will prolong your time outside in comfort. Perfectly illustrating the trend for outdoor living spaces are new products from Jo Alexander (01954 267857; “New for spring is the Day Bed, an alternative to a steamer or sunlounger, and our new Chedworth coffee table, with a handy shelf for magazines and newspapers,” says its director, Jo Allpress. “Cushions and parasols offer the chance to create a seamless transition from your house to your garden, and accessories offer the chance to personalise your garden – our customers are loving our Kew pots and rattan planters, along


with our Kadai fire bowls and lanterns to create a magical evening celebration.” If you’re a trend hunter, there are also some bolder, brighter options emerging. The first sees a fun Latin American influence, with sizzlinghot colours such as lime green and bright pink, and a retro 1960s style using materials such as woven cord and plastic: high-end Italian brands such as Moroso have been doing it for years, and now the high street has got the memo, with B&Q’s Moretta range, new this year, as the stand-out stylish bargain for 2013. The second is a wider weave for rattan and cane furniture that’s bolder, and touches on a dreamy 1970s style: look for oversized weaves, such as the Ocean range by Alexander Rose (01444 258931;, and furniture that’s made for lounging, such as daybeds and hanging pods.

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BLUE AND PURPLE BEANBAGS, £19.99, TROPICAL STRIPE BEANBAGS, £22.99 Homebase (08450 778888; RIGHT BARCELONA ARMCHAIRS, £189, and oval extending teak table, now £445, all Jo Alexander (01954 267857;

Low-down beds and beanbags say lazy lounging, while a table for ten is for big sociable gatherings


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Natural materials are an obvious match for garden furniture, gently blending in with the planting itself. Teak is as popular as ever, because it’s so durable, and it can even look better as it ages. Jo Allpress from Jo Alexander advises either leaving the wood to weather to a silvery grey, but treating it with a teak patiniser to protect against mildew, dirt and moisture; or using a teak protector that will retain the wood’s golden brown hue. She adds to “make sure you go for products with A-grade teak from certified sustainable plantations.” Another way to include natural materials is to introduce woven fencing, or even commission a woven gazebo or summerhouse as a focal point. Tim Radford of Wonderwood (01223 263423; www. makes woven fencing and small rustic structures; he says that the sculptural nature of a woven fence “sort of makes it a work of art in itself; they fit in their environment beautifully.” All the timber he uses is harvested within three miles of his Cambridgeshire base, making it incredibly eco friendly. Radford can also carve furniture from fallen trees or in-situ tree stumps, a really unusual talking point for the garden that couldn’t be any more local. Beyond buying something that fits the physical space you need to fill, it’s what

happens when the sun isn’t shining that is important, too. If you’re planning on leaving garden furniture out all year, make sure it’s truly weatherproof, and if it’s not, that you either have somewhere to store it, or that you’d be happy to look at a mound of tarpaulin over the winter. There’s an important distinction between weather-resistant and weatherproof: natural rattan is not meant to be left out, but modern synthetic woven equivalents last much better, for example. Check that plastics are labelled as fade-resistant and that stainless steel is outdoor grade. “Even weatherproof furniture should be cared for in order to maintain its luxurious feel,” says Lee Adams at Alexander Francis. “We would suggest you cover the furniture in the cold winter months, or during a lot of rain, and bring cushions inside or store in cushion boxes.



FAR LEFT KOOKABURRA SHADE SAIL, from £23.95, Primrose (01189 035210; www. LEFT BESPOKE GAZEBO WITH ‘WITCHES HAT’ ROOF, Wonderwood (01223 263423; www. burwashwonderwood. com)

This will make your furniture much more durable and a much better investment in the long run.” Foldable or stackable designs can be extremely useful, because you can tuck them away in the corner of the shed or garage, and they’re available in every style. For fans of timeless teak, the Bristol round table and Sussex chairs from Jo Alexander both fold up, while a funky plastic chair can be stacked up when not needed. The oak Zeno set from Habitat (0844 499 4686; is possibly the biggest space saver on the market, with a dropleaf table that cleverly conceals four chairs in its central section. Folding or stacking designs are also great as ‘extras’ for occasional guests, and, since they’re designed for portability, you can pick them up and move them as you chase the sun during the day. Other savvy designs

incorporate handles so they’re easy to grab and reposition, like contemporary Danish brand Cane-line’s minimalist On-the-Move side table. You may be lucky enough to have room for a secondary seating area, such as a bench or little table for two at the end of the garden. Position it so that it catches the eye – a strong colour works very well at a distance – but ‘disappears’ into the planting. Wire benches with a built-in trellis are wonderful for training a climber, for example, while a stone bench with informal planting at its feet can give a feeling of permanence: The Secret Garden (01223 260040; has a good selection of this kind of secondary seating. As Jo Allpress points out, a bench makes a lasting gift: “We’re finding more and more people buying benches for birthdays and anniversaries.”


Not everyone is a sun worshipper, and even our temperate climate demands some consideration for shading, so factor it in to your buying decisions. Check that your table has a central hole for a parasol (not every product does), or leave space on the patio for a free-standing one. For more of a statement, install a simple pavilion with a textile roof, an easy way to create instant outdoor ‘room’. For something more permanent, homeowners have often opted for traditional awnings – try Cambridge Sunblinds (01223 460192; for a good range – but a shade sail can provide a nice contemporary alternative. Semi-permanent, so you can unclip them fairly easily, their dynamic shape creates a focal point that’s every bit as stylish as the furniture it shelters.

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Get creative in your garden with these quirky and eyecatching accessories and illuminations 9

10 11



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Wendy Lunn from Hotdogs Training offers her top ten tips on training your puppy to walk on a loose lead 1. The first thing to do is start your training as soon as you get your puppy – you don’t need to wait for him to be big enough to go out for proper walks. All of these tips can be used in your home and in the garden. 2. Get him used to wearing a collar and lead as soon as you get him, don’t wait until he has had his vaccinations and is allowed out before putting his collar and lead on. 3. Enrol with a good puppy school that fully understands the principles of kind, fair and effective training. Commit to attend training as soon as your vet allows him to mix with other dogs. 4. Use tasty treats as rewards when he gets it right. Allow him to sniff a few treats in your hand before you set off so he knows what he can earn for walking with you (turn the page for some of the top treats on the market now!) 5. Encourage him to follow you. As soon as he steps ahead of you, turn around and walk in a different direction. Resist any temptation to follow him – as he gets bigger he will expect you to follow him and pull you along if you don’t. 6. As you give him his treat, position your hand just behind your leg so that he is following you as he eats his treat. 7. Don’t hold the lead too tight, encourage him to stay with you by using verbal encouragement and praise rather than

holding him in position with the lead. If he gets used to feeling constant pressure from the lead on his collar he will think that’s what lead-walking should feel like. 8. Decide which side you want your dog to walk on and discourage him from crossing from side to side. Reward him on the side you want him to walk on, and ignore him if he crosses over; turn and walk in the other direction and see how easily he comes back to your original side. Reward him as soon as he is there. 9. In an open area, walk in a zigzag or figure of eight pattern, encouraging your dog to

follow you and regularly rewarding him for doing so. As you circle towards your dog, he will learn to slow his pace, and as you turn away from him he will need to quicken to keep up with you. This will teach him to stay with you no matter what speed you walk. 10. Walk him off the lead in safe, secure areas – but never beside a road. Call him to your side and encourage him to follow you offlead. Don’t forget you are encouraging him to follow you and rewarding him for doing so. If he walks ahead of you turn around and encourage him to catch up and follow – when practising this off-lead, you can run away from him to encourage him to stay with you.

WIN! £150 to spend at PetsPyjamas! PetsPyjamas is a fantastic shopping destination and social network for stylish pet owners and their equally stylish pets. The website is also a hub of information, with a dedicated ‘Pet Neighbourhood’ section, offering tips on the best pet-friendly places in your area, as well as stocking thousands of fabulous pet and pet-themed products, including accessories, beds, coats, collars, leads and harnesses, right the way through to toys and treats. This month we’re giving away a fantastic £150 voucher to spend online at PetsPyjamas where our lucky winner will have their pick of top brands and designers. To enter, visit


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treat time? This month, the experts from Scampers Natural Pet Store look at the potential minefield of treating your dogs, advising on what, when and how to go about it E ALL LOVE TO TREAT our dogs, and as well as them thoroughly enjoying it, it’s a tried, tested and very effective way of rewarding good behaviour or saying ‘well done’ for learning a new trick. We may also use treats to help keep our pets’ teeth clean or simply as something to chew on. More often than not though, it’s just because we love them! But it can sometimes be a case of too much of a good thing. In fact, obesity and dental problems in dogs are very often the result of ‘over treating’ – coupled with a lack of understanding about proper diet and the need for good nutrition. Sugary, poor quality, cereal-based treats and biscuits are one of the biggest culprits, and a major issue for canine health. Often these treats are packaged like doggy sweets, cleverly marketed and sold by big companies in supermarkets and pet shop chains. We all know we shouldn’t give our children snacks full of colourants, preservatives, food waste, salt and sugar, and we should definitely think twice about giving them to our dogs as well. Reading and understanding the labels on food and treats is vital. At Scampers we put all the ingredients of our packaged products on the shelves – but we’re unique in that respect, so you need to put the legwork into learning the jargon and making sure you’re in a position to make an informed choice. We understand that giving snacks and treats in moderation is part of the loving relationship we all have with our pets, but you need to consider the rest of your pet’s diet when doling these out, and adjust the rest of the food intake where appropriate. Remember also that a treat needn’t be packed full of sugar and calories – healthy treats can be just as tasty and they’re actually good for your animals too. Aim for natural treats that contain no derivatives, preservatives, colourants, sugar or salt. Grouping treats together into different

categories can help you understand when and how to feed them to your dog. First of all, there are functional treats, such as chews and bones, which are great for dental care. Our dogs love tucking into things like hearts, kidneys, liver and raw meaty bones too, which you can now buy from our store (Natures Menu has just brought out a fabulous selection), but deer antlers are becoming a firm favourite too: they are 100 per cent natural and chewing on something like this also releases endorphins and even serves as a form of exercise for your pet (try Farm Food Antlers®). Perhaps you’re training a puppy? In which case you’ll need some tasty, easy-to-store treats for instant rewards – we recommend Barker & Barker, which makes a great range of low fat, natural doggie snacks – their liver treats are especially good. If you just want to tell your pooch you love him, try Hungry Hector, which makes gourmet natural treats

including the Doggie Oggie Cornish Pasty and Scrummy Mackerel Flapjacks – all of which are fresh, packed full of goodness and recommended by vets. You might also like to try Betty Miller’s wholesome dog biscuits, which even come in gluten free and lower calorie versions – as well as the Whiffy Dog treat, which contains peppermint and charcoal to reduce bad breath and flatulence! For out and out indulgence, check out Billy + Margot, a company which Dragon’s Den entrepreneur Deborah Meadon chose to invest in on the TV show. It makes gourmet treats including special doggy ice cream (a great ‘lick’ for summer). Best of all, company founder Marie Sawle is a trained nutritionist, so while the treats may be delicious, they are also good for your dog too.

Giving snacks and treats in moderation is part of the loving relationship you have with your dog, but consider the rest of their diet too 64 | Cambridge Edition | April 2013



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Cambridge Edition April 2013 Issue  

Cambridge Edition April 2013 Issue

Cambridge Edition April 2013 Issue  

Cambridge Edition April 2013 Issue