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Health & Beauty LOOK GOOD AND FEEL GREAT IN 2014!





Romantic Breaks




CONGRATULATIONS! Another year of outstanding A Level results. Yet another year sees Ruthin School students gain entry to top ranking universities, due to their outstanding performance in the A Level examinations. This year saw the biggest cohort of students in Upper Sixth with 53 students receiving their A Level results. Many applied to universities ranked in the top 20, all of which demanded high grades. Ruthin School focuses its attention on high academic outcomes, and is delighted with the continued success. Top Ranking University places include: Cambridge Cardiff Durham Exeter Hong Kong Imperial College King’s College Lancaster Loughborough Nottingham Sheffield St Andrews UCL Warwick York

I Economics I Engineering I Natural Sciences I I Chemistry I Education I I Economics I Philosophy I I Marketing with Management I Computer Science I Business and Management I I Dentistry I I Chemical Engineering I Biomedical Science I Mechanical Engineering I I Materials Science and Engineering I I Nutrition I Computer Science with Management I Law I I Economics I I Financial Mathematics I I Civil Engineering I I Computer Science I I International Relations I I Electronic and Electrical Engineering I I Philosophy, Politics and Economics I Electronic Engineering I I Mathematics I Business and Marketing I

Ruthin School was ranked 34 in The Times A Level League Tables, with 60.8% grades at A* or A. Top student, Sophia, achieved 4 A*, 1 A and went to Cambridge to study Engineering.

Congratulations to all students who received their A/AS Level results this year.

General points:

■ Co-educational 11-19 years ■ Average class size is 10 ■ Pupils are taught by specialist staff. Several have PhDs and a number were educated at Oxbridge ■ Sport, music, drama, volunteering and a range of activities contribute to the non-academic life of all pupils.


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Publisher Dan Bromage Editor Stephanie Anne Lloyd Senior Sales Executive Emily Shone Sales Executive Kelley-Jo Beattie Production Editor Emma Joy Anderson Staff Writer Gill Chetcuti Art Editor Julie Gagen Production Editor Thomas Gagen Graphic Designer Mark Gunning And a huge thanks to our work experience student Jonathan Dyke! Contributors Lynne Allbutt, Lucy Tubbs, Rebecca Hughes, Gloria Mans, Emily Bromage, Mark Lampkin, Emyr Evans, Stephanie Anne-Lloyd, P. Parker, Aunty Jane, Lauren Forbes, Tommy Bromage

Yattar Yattar Magazine, Brillybox Publishing & Media Ltd, CDC Distribution Centre, Unit 13, Vauxhall Industrial Estate, Ruabon, Wrexham LL14 6HA. Telephone: 01978 813 035 If you would like to write for Yattar Yattar, or would like to find out about office vacancies, please get in touch on the number above or send an email to:

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Dear Readers,

A New Year beckons, doubtless you have made your New Year resolutions which will include losing weight, exercising more and cutting down on your alcohol consumption (me too) and shrug your shoulders come February thinking that your quality of life is far more important 2014 is sure to be better economically as the government starts sugar coating everything before the general election in May 2015. Someone asked me ‘How do you know when politicians and bankers are lying?’ Answer – their lips move. Spire Yale and Tony Smith have done me proud once again, with two new knees to go with my new hip, I am gradually being rebuilt. I intend to add to my six dogs this year with a chowchow as I miss my rescued blind and deaf Yogi Bear who died of a heart attack but not before rewarding me with four years of love and devotion. Thank you to our readers who snap up all 48,000 copies of Yattar Yattar and many thanks to our advertisers who make it possible for us to offer this high quality magazine free-of-charge. Our March/April issue will be a bumper one as we increase the pages of what to do and see in the Spring. ng lli a C We are all fired up after our successful 2013, which saw s! all writer Yattar Yattar move from quarterly to bi-monthly issues. y If you have anuld Remember you can get all six issues delivered to your home stories you woished, for just the cost of postage and packing (see page 100). May bl pu e like to se by I wish you all a happy and healthy 2014. get in touch l@ ria stephanie anne lloYD email: edito Kindest regards, r.c tta yattarya Proud Editor

Contents JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2014 4 What’s on – 25 pages! Great events in Wales, Cheshire and Shropshire for Jan/Feb. 26 Yattar revieWs Check out what we got up to over the Christmas season 28 neW Year, neW You We share the most common New Year resolutions and how to stick to them 34 Be MY valentine The history behind Valentines day, gift ideas and the best romantic movies 39 Yattar holiDaYs Its time to plan your holiday and have something to look forward to through the January blues 42 Yattar aCtive Is your new year resolution to be more active? Check out these fun ways to keep fit 44 Yattar esCapes Hotel’s have great offers for you and someone special to get away together 47 hotel revieWs We’ve visited Mellington Hall, Oddfellows, The Bear and Nanteos Mansion

53 FooD tasters The best local foods, tried and tasted. Yummy! 63 arts Corner Our pick of the best art events for Jan/Feb and great ways to get creative 66 hoMes & garDens Top tips to update your home and start preparing your garden for spring 75 vets anD WilDliFe Household pets and wildlife – read about our furry friends 77 Yattar CeleBrities Find out what celebs our readers spotted this issue 78 Fashion & aCCessories What better excuse for a brand new wardrobe than a brand new year?! 83 sChools neWs Keep updated on the best local schools and colleges 88 poets Corner Local poets offer their verses 90 BooK CluB Local author review, ratings on the latest books and book events for you to attend

92 KiDs Corner With Christmas gone it can be hard to keep the kids entertained – check out our great suggestions 96 volunteering Make your new year resolution to help others, find out how with our volunteering notice-board 100 CrossWorD Keep your mind sharp, and find out if you got the answers correct last issue 102 health & BeautY Find out how to look after your body after too many helpings of turkey! 109 health aDviCe We speak to consultants about a range of health issues 114 Your stars Find out what’s in store… 118 CoMpetitions Enter now to win great prizes! 119 reaDers’ letters Our readers have their say on a range of issues!

YATTAR YATTAR is published bi-monthly by Brillybox Publishing & Media Ltd. Every effort is made to ensure that the information and advice contained in these articles is correct and appropriate, but no responsibility for loss or damage occasioned to any person acting or refraining from action in reliance on or as a result of anything omitted from such articles can be, or is accepted by, the authors, the publishers, their employees or any other persons connected with Brillybox Publishing & Media Ltd. Save as expressively permitted by law no part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without the prior written authority of Brillybox Publishing & Media Ltd. © 2014 Brillybox Publishing & Media Ltd, all rights reserved. Registered Number: 7725045.

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If Music be the Food of Love… BBC National Orchestra of Wales will be bringing romance to mid and north Wales this Valentine’s weekend as they present a series of love-themed concerts in Aberystwyth, Bangor, Wrexham and Llandudno. For their spring tour across mid and north Wales, the orchestra is conducted by the popular young British conductor Nicholas Collon (pictured), who has shot to fame in recent years. In Wrexham and Llandudno, the orchestra will be presenting two romantic concerts, with audiences treated to music including the Love Scene from Berlioz’s Roméo et Juliette, and Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade. Young violinist Chloë Hanslip will also appear with the orchestra to play Bruch’s romantic Violin Concerto No 1. The orchestra will travel to Aberystwyth and Bangor to present two concerts of Viennese classics – including Schubert’s noble Symphony No 9, with romantic warmth and beautiful melodies throughout the whole piece. They will also be joined on stage by young violinist Callum Smart, who first performed with the BBC National Orchestra of Wales as part of the BBC Young Musician competition in 2010. In these performances on tour, Callum returns to perform Mozart’s Violin Concerto No 5.

For more information and to book tickets, call the orchestra’s dedicated audience line on 0800 052 1812, or contact the venue direct. For more information about the orchestra, visit their website at l Thursday 13 February 2014, 7.30pm, Aberystwyth Arts Centre £13–£19 (discounts available) 01970 623232 l Friday 14 February 2014, 7.30pm Prichard-Jones Hall, Bangor University £12.50 (discounts available) 01248 382828 l Saturday 15 February 2014, 7.30pm. William Aston Hall, Glyndwr University, Wrexham £9.25 – £15.50 (discounts available) 01978 293293 Sunday 16 February 2014, 3pm Venue Cymru, Llandudno £11–£20 (discounts available) 01492 872000

February Half Term Forest Fun and Frolics at GreenWood Forest Park

GreenWood Forest Park, north Wales’s leading family adventure park, is opening as usual for February half term. While the Green Dragon Roller Coaster may still be hibernating until the main season, there’s still endless forest fun

4 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

to really make it a half term break to remember. You can zoom down the 70m Great Green Run, have a go at den building, explore TreeTop Towers, steer a jungle boat through the wooded wilderness and reach for the sky on the super bouncy Giant Jumper. For those rainy days, head inside the Enchanted Wood Barn, which is full of the latest indoor play – young explorers will love it! While the children play, parents can enjoy the GreenOak Café, which serves a wide variety of tasty hot meals and snacks, and take a seat next to the cosy log burner to enjoy a coffee. For up to date information including all times and dates of events visit

A journey to remember

Llanberis Lake Railway will be opening for February half term on Saturday 22nd February. Starting from the station at Gilfach Ddu, visitors will have the chance to stay toasty in the train carriages as they journey through the beautiful north Wales landscape. For more information or to book tickets for a great family day out, visit www.lake-railway. or call 01286 870549

WHaT’S ON in Brief

The Write Stuff Now in its third year, the ‘Writers in

Residence’ scheme at Gladstone’s Library is going from strength to strength. This year’s programme will see four authors visit the library in January. Of these authors, the first will be lecturer, writer in residence at the department of English, Stockholme University and former Bosnian war refugee, Adnan Mahmutovic arriving on 20th January. He will be followed on 27th January by Neil Griffiths whose debut novel, Betrayal in Naples was the winner of the Authors’ Club Best First Novel, while his second, Saving Caravaggio was shortlisted for the Costa Novel of the Year. On 30th January two authors arriving at the library – writer, photographer and winner of the 2010 John Muir Trust’s Wild Writing Award, Melissa Harrison and Tania Hershman, author of two short story collections. The four authors will be taking part in Hearth, a mini literary festival that will be held at Gladstone’s Library from 31st January to 2nd February where writers and readers alike can gather around the warming fire to listen to readings, attend workshops and discuss books and ideas. Find out more about Gladstone’s Library in Hawarden at or call 01244 532350 with any queries.

Leap of Faith Do you have what it takes to zoom down the highest and longest zip wire in all of Europe? The adrenaline fuelled tourist attraction is located in Penrhyn Quarry in Bethesda nestled among the mountain of Snowdonia National Park. Those brave enough to ride the zip wire will travel at speeds of up to 100mph at heights of 500ft above the mountain lake, so it’s certainly not suitable for the faint hearted!

If you’ve got a head for heights, now’s your opportunity to embark on the ride of your life while raising money for Action for Children. The charity are working with Zip World and offering adrenaline junkies the chance to ride the zip wire for just £45 – all you have to do is raise £100 sponsorship money for this worthy cause. Find out more at www. or call the Action for Children Wales fundraising team on 01492 514032. Find out more about Zip World at

Model Behaviour Head to the National Slate

Museum in Llanberis for a great day out for the whole family that will also prove to be any rail lover’s dream! The Model Railway Show promises to be a steam-filled spectacular, with loads of activities to enjoy including free rides on miniature steam engines for children. On every day of the four-day festival, there’ll be demonstrations, talks and various layouts of all shapes and sizes on display, from 00mm to 32mm gauge engines, as well as trade stands to buy some items to take home, plus don’t forget to bring your own 00 gauge trains and have a go on the test track layout. This year’s show will also feature demonstrations of the slate carrying incline, located in Padarn Country Park as well as storytelling sessions for children. The Model Railway Show will be held at the

National Slate Museum in Llanberis (LL55 4TY) from Thursday 27th February to Sunday 2nd March, 10am to 4pm. For more information, call 02920 573700 or visit www.

l 18TH JaNuaRy ENduRaNCELifE aNgLESEy MaRaTHON On your marks for four races starting from Breakwater Country Park, Holyhead – a 10k, a half marathon, a marathon and a 32-mile ultra race. l 18TH JaNuaRy BiRdS gaLORE! Head to Llanfairfechan for an easy walk to see the winter ducks and waders along the shore and Morfa Madryn reserve pools. This event will be delivered in Welsh. l 24TH JaNuaRy y TRi digRi a HOgia’R BONC A Welsh evening of comedy and music including a threecourse meal at the Legacy Royal Victoria Hotel in Llanberis. l 25TH JaNuaRy HivE BuiLdiNg WORkSHOP Head to the National Beekeeping Centre in the Bodnant Food Centre to learn how to build your own beehive. l 30TH JaNuaRy dENBigH HiSTORiCaL LECTuRES The first of a series of historical lectures in Denbigh that will take place every Thursday until 20th March. Visit www. to find out more. l 4TH – 15TH fEBRuaRy QuiLTfEST 2014 The International Pavilion in Llangollen will host two quilting exhibitions over the course of Quiltfest, with workshops and traders to be confirmed. Visit www.quiltfest. to see the latest news.

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l 14TH fEBRuaRy vaLENTiNE’S NigHT Enjoy a romantic evening of food and music at the Legacy Royal Victoria Hotel in Llanberis in the company of a Gary Barlow tribute act and DJ entertainment.

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Join us on tour! Ymuno â ni ar daith! 13.02.2014 - 16.02.2014 Aberystwyth Arts Centre Canolfan y Celfyddydau Aberystwyth Neuadd Prichard-Jones Hall, Bangor Neuadd William Aston Hall, Wrexham / Wrecsam Venue Cymru, Llandudno

EXPLORE NORTH WALES IN COMFORT - BY TRAIN ! Our two narrow-gauge railways run through the very heart of the Snowdonia National Park and provide the perfect way to relax and enjoy the magnificent scenery - during a car-free, care-free journey in comfortable carriages complete with an ‘at-your-seat’ buffet service and on-train toilets. Trains run throughout the year with a daily service from late March to the end of October.

with / gyda Nicholas Collon

There is always plenty to entertain the whole family, both on and around the railways - you can ride the trains all day, take a shorter trip to one of our many stations and explore local villages and countryside at your leisure before returning on a later train or visit us for one of our popular, ‘family-friendly’ special events. Train times and further information available on our website.


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The Day We Went to Bangor!

The Bangor New Music Festival has been bringing musical artists of the highest calibre to Bangor and giving the public the chance to experience and learn about contemporary music every year since 2000, and this year promises to be no different. Over the course of the four-day festival, venues throughout Bangor will host some of the best talent in contemporary music, including Madeleine Mitchell, the Asaf Sirkis Trio and the Orchestra of the Swan. Visitors to the Bangor New Music Festival will also have the opportunity to attend musical workshops where they can learn about everything from chamber music to electoacoustic and can pick up some hints for both playing and composing music. Tickets are now available, so make sure you don’t miss out! This year’s Bangor New Music Festival will be held in and around Bangor (see their website for exact venue details) from 12th to 15th March. Find out more online at or telephone 01248 382181.

Local History

William Salesbury Born in Llansanan, in 1520, William Salesbury, a Welsh lexicographer, was a central figure in Welsh religious and cultural history. Although noted for his Welsh– English dictionary, he is most remembered for being the principle translator of the New Testament into Welsh. Salesbury hailed from an influential gentry family and, like many people of his standing, was educated at Oxford University. As a staunch Protestant and a Welsh language advocate, by 1547 he had published a collection of proverbs, (thought to have been the first book printed in Welsh) as well as many religious works supporting the Reformation. He saw the printing press as an invaluable tool in ensuring the Welsh language’s survival and embraced it fully. The Act of 1563 required all churches in Wales to have translations of the Book of Common Prayer and the Bible alongside

the English versions. Richard Davies, bishop of St David’s, invited Salesbury to collaborate with him on these translations – Salesbury ended up doing the majority of the work on the New Testament, and although it came under criticism for Salesbury’s overuse of Latin and Davies’ lengthy introductory letter to the people of Wales, it was an extremely important publication. In 1588 the Bible translation into Welsh was completed by bishop William Morgan but Salesbury will always be remembered as having the clearest vision of how the Renaissance and Reformation could meet the needs of the Welsh people.

Historic Wrexham

Learn about the history of Wrexham and the local area with Wrexham Heritage this winter – now is your last chance to catch two great exhibitions at Wrexham Museum! untiL 11th JanuarY (cLOsed sundaYs) discOVer the medieVaL citY: Places, Voices, JoUrneys This touring exhibition explores life in the medieval city of Chester and how its role as a place of pilgrimage and trade, and its location on the border with Wales shaped the lives of its inhabitants and their relations with their neighbours. In association with the Grosvenor Museum, Chester. untiL 11th JanuarY (cLOsed sundaYs) faMoUs faces How many faces will you recognise among the oil paintings, photographs and busts on display? In association with the National Library of Wales.

What’s On at Clwyd Theatr Cymru

l Mr and Mrs Moon 14th – 25th JanuarY A sparkling new show by Oily Cart for children aged two to five years. When the woman who lives in the moon comes down from the sky to play with the children on a beautiful beach, she likes it so much she doesn’t want to go home. Join her and feel the sand between your toes and dance to the music of the stars. l LLYr WiLLiams 26th JanuarY Following an outstanding recital at Clwyd Theatr Cymru in April 2013, as part of the Celtic Festival, Llyr Williams is back in Mold by popular demand. His reputation continues to grow and he is in demand throughout the world, with current plans including a debut at the Istanbul Recital Series. l midLand YOuth Jazz Orchestra 4th FebruarY The awardwinning orchestra, unbeaten in the BBC National Big Band Competition for twenty five years, has toured the USA, Canada and Russia and performed with the likes of John Dankworth, Jamie Cullum, Arturo Sandoval, Jools Holland and Georgie Fame. If it’s excitement you want, this wonderful outfit has it in abundance. l Under Milk Wood 6th FebruarY – 8th march A work of genius, rich in humour and populated by sublime, enchanting characters. Written from the heart, it offers an unforgettable journey to the roots of language and on into the soul of Wales. This new production, directed by Terry Hands, marks both the centenary of Dylan Thomas’ birth in 1914 and the 60th anniversary of the play’s British première. l Tree of leaf and flaMe 19th FebruarY Haunting storytelling and dazzling musicianship come together in this unique retelling of The Mabinogi, the oldest stories of Britain.

Wrexham Museum is located on regent street in Wrexham town centre. find out more about events at the museum by calling 01978 297460.

Visit the Yattar Yattar website

To book tickets for any of the shows listed, visit or call the box office on 0845 330 3565

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 7


What’s On at Venue Cymru l Dreamboats anD Petticoats 20th – 25th January Inspired by the six smash hit albums of the same name, the West End sell out sensation Dreamboats and Petticoats features some of the greatest hit songs of rock ‘n’ roll. l MOscOW city Ballet: swan Lake 27th – 28th January Moscow City Ballet is currently at its outstanding artistic best – winning new invitations to perform internationally, and Swan Lake is perhaps their signature piece. l otheLLo, 30th January Presented by Icarus Theatre Collective and King’s Theatre, Southsea – a dangerous tale of ambition, jealousy and love will unfurl in Shakespeare’s classic tale of deception. l sarah Millican: home birD tour 1st – 2nd FeBruary The British Comedy Award’s Queen of Comedy Sarah Millican is giving up the party scene (Ann Summers), easing off on the drinking (fizzy pop equals wealthy dentists) and is settling down (taking her bra off). l Buddy hOlly and the cricketers 7th FeBruary Don’t miss the chance to see Britain’s longestrunning and greatest Buddy Holly act live. l GriMethOrpe cOlliery Band 8th FeBruary Probably the world’s most famous colliery band with an international reputation for excellence on both the the concert and contest stage. Don’t miss this chance to see them live at Venue Cymru this February.

l FairpOrt cOnventiOn, 8th FeB Fairport Convention are often credited with being the first English electric folk band. Formed in April 1967, Fairport developed an individual style which melded rock music with traditional English tunes and songs. l cLassic Ghosts 19th – 22nd FeBruary A brand new double presentation of spine-tingling stories featuring The Signalman by Charles Dickens and Oh, Whistle and I’ll Come to You, My Lad by M. R. Roberts. l the MOscOW state circus: Park GorkoGo, 26th – 27th FeBruary Set in the centre of Moscow’s cultural and artistic quarter, ‘Park Gorkogo’ (Gorky Park) is the perfect backdrop for what one of the greatest circus shows on earth. Superstar clowns, Pavlik and Klava, invite the audience to see magnificent feats of human achievement.

Local Hero In Safe Hands…

The word ‘legend’ gets bandied around a lot in football these days, but if anyone ever truly deserved the title, then it is ex-Manchester City goalkeeper, Bert Trautmann. Bert originally came to Britain during World War II as an exLuftwaffe paratrooper and German prisoner of war and was sent to a camp in Cheshire. Once the war was over, he refused repatriation to Germany and instead became a goalkeeper for a local football team. Manchester City signed Bert as goalkeeper in 1949, but the decision was not a popular one, prompting protests and angry letters written to the press. Despite the initial negative reaction, Bert went on to make 500 appearances for the club, including at the 1956 Cup Final, where he made several crucial saves which helped win the game. All this despite having broken his neck, as doctors would later confirm, when he dived at the feet of Birmingham City striker Peter Murphy to deny him a goal.

Throughout his life, Bert was at the forefront of restoring relations between Britain and Germany and, when he retired, he founded and ran a charity that forged Angelo-German relations. He was awarded an OBE in 2004. Bert’s son, Steve, works at Plas Coch Holiday Homes. When Bert sadly passed away last year at the age of 89, Manchester City invited Steve to help launch the Bert Trautmann Award, which will be given annually by the club. A proud Steve (pictured) accepted the award from ex-goalie Alex Williams on behalf of his dad.

What’s On at William Aston Hall l david O’dOherty wiLL try to Fix everythinG 25th January David O’Doherty, recipient of the 2008 Edinburgh Comedy Award and inventor of the last remaining swimming stroke, ‘The Squid’ (on back, feet first), has written a new comedy show featuring both talking and songs.

l russell hOWard: wonDerbox 27th January A chance to see one of our funniest and most successful comedians live, as he tries out material and warms up for his sold-out arena tour. Russell returns to his first love, live stand-up with his first tour for three years and a show which looks set to be the hottest ticket of 2014. l the eLvis years 1st FeBruary An outstanding concert production of the West End musical Jailhouse Rock featuring original star Mario Kombou and his incredible band led by legendary producer, musical director and Ivor Novello awardwinner David Mackay, in the UK’s number one Elvis show.

8 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

l chris raMsey: the most DanGerous man on saturDay morninG teLevision 12th FeBruary Fresh from a complete sell-out, twice extended 2012 tour, multiple appearances on Celebrity Juice and 8 Out of 10 Cats, and a starring role in BBC Two’s Hebburn, Chris Ramsey embarks on a brand new tour for 2014.

l BBc nOW cOncert 15th FeBruary The BBC National Orchestra of Wales combines three wonderfully colourful works, starting with Berlioz’s passionate love scene from his Romeo and Juliet. One of the UK’s most talented and highly regarded violinists, Chloe Hanslip, then performs perhaps the most popular of all violin concertos, Bruch’s lyrical masterpiece. In the second half the orchestra perform Rimsky-Korsakov’s exotic orchestral tour de force, Scheherazade, with its wonderful musical depiction of Sinbad’s ship on the sea, the Bagdad festival and the Tale of Prince Kalendar. to book your tickets to any of the shows at william aston hall in wrexham, visit www.glyndwr. or call the box office on 01978 293293.

What’s On in Brief

l 11th January resOlutiOn ruBBish cOllectiOn Help clean up Pensarn beach while getting some much needed exercise after the festive season. Meet at the beach café in Pensarn and don’t forget to wrap up warm! l 8th FeBruary vOcal WOrkshOps With Marian BryFdir Learn how to develop and improve, but above all enjoy your voice whether it be in folk or contemporary style. The workshop will take place at the Ucheldre Centre in Holyhead on Anglesey. l 9th FeBruary llandudnO nick Beer 10k rOad race starting and finishing on the promenade in Llandudno. The route includes running around the scenic Great Orme. Register at l 16th FeBruary BlindFOlded FaMily Fun challenGe Test your senses and team working skills in this blindfolded challenge, plus you can help to raise money for Blind Veterans UK. See to find out more. l 22nd FeBruary BeesWax WOrkshOp Discover how to make candles and beauty products using natural ingredients, simple techniques and of course beeswax at the National Beekeeping Centre in the Bodnant Food Centre.

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North Wales Snippets

What’s On at Pontio

SOME TIMELY GOINGS-ON IN NORTH WALES… Calamity Clam Marine researchers from Bangor University have revealed that the oldest animal in the world, a species of Icelandic clam known as an ocean quahog (Arctica islandica), was 507-years-old, not 405 as originally thought. The 3.4-inch bivalve mollusc, met its premature end, accidently, when researchers prised open its shell in order to count its growth rings, killing it instantly! A quahog’s shell grows a layer every summer, sometimes as thin as 0.1mm, when the water is warmer and the plankton it eats are plentiful, but as it was so old, the markings on its hinge ligament were impossible to distinguish. It was then that the decision was made to open the clam to make the identification easier. Christened ‘Ming’ after the Chinese dynasty which ruled in the year of its birth, this particular creature was one of about 200 that were collected during a climate-change expedition to the Icelandic shelf in 2006. Scientists say that Ming’s long life is due to its extremely slow metabolism and sedentary lifestyle. In the year Ming was born, the great Leonardo da Vinci had begun work on his masterpiece, Mona Lisa, the first recorded epidemic of smallpox hit the New World and Switzerland became an independent state. According to the Guinness Book of Records, the existing record for the longest-lived animal belongs to a 220-year-old Arctica clam collected in 1982 from American waters. Unofficially, the record belongs to a 374-year-old Icelandic clam currently on show in a German museum, whilst the longest living terrestrial creature was Adwaita (pictured above), a male giant tortoise estimated to be 255 years old when it died in 2006 in an Indian zoo.

Guess Who! Fans of the cult science fiction programme Dr Who got a unique opportunity l 7th – 8th January to see the JOhn PhilliPs hall, BangOr iconic police university PantOmime: Cawr Y GilfaCh telephone box, known as TARDIS A Welsh language pantomime (Time and Relative Dimension in Space) based on the ancient myth when it toured Wales, in November, as part from the Rhymney Valley by of the show’s 50th anniversary celebrations. Cwmni Mega. Thousands of ‘Whovians’ (as they refer to l 31st January themselves) flocked to sites in Holyhead, reichel hall, BangOr Llandudno, Wrexham, Aberystwyth, St Davids, university Swansea and Newport to catch a glimpse of hidden Corners 2 A session to share experiences the world’s most famous time machine before from Pontio’s latest musical it dematerialised in Cardiff ahead of a special residency in two Bangor anniversary episode called The Day of the homes and exploring themes Doctor. This latest sci-fi adventure starred three of arts and dementia. incarnations of the enigmatic time lord and l 1st FeBruary was broadcast as part of a worldwide POWis hall, BangOr simulcast in over 75 countries. university BBC Cymru Wales is music at BangOr: Freddy KemPF responsible for making Renowned pianist Dr Who, but the show’s did you Know? Freddy Kempf visits connections with the Tom Baker, the fourth Bangor for the very area predates the first time. Doctor Who, joined a programme’s 2005 monastry at the age l 1st FeBruary return, with many early BangOr railWay of 15 and stayed for episodes being filmed cluB. ar Y rêls: in Wales. Terry Nation, six years! GeorGia ruth Winner of the 2013 the scriptwriter whose Welsh Music Prize brings dark imagination inspired her unique sound to many of the show’s terrifying Welsh language music. characters was born and raised l 6th FeBruary in Cardiff. Perhaps his most memorable POWis hall, BangOr creation was the sinister mechanical Daleks university that proved to be the doctor’s most menacing MusiC at BanGor: JaMes and durable opponents. Nation’s inspiration GilChrist and sholto KYnoCh for the Daleks, whose bodies appear to glide One of England’s finest across the ground, came from watching the tenors is joined by acclaimed Georgian State dance troupe on television. pianist for a performance of Schubert’s famous song-cycle Die Schöne Müllerin. There is also a free pre-show talk.

On the Straits and Narrow A treat for both fans of Dire Straits and general music lovers alike, The Straits – a group of handpicked world-class musicians playing the music of Dire Straits – will be coming to the Pavilion Theatre in Rhyl. The Straits’ story began two years ago in Rome. Dire Straits’ sax player Chris White and ex Dire Straits keyboard player and producer Alan Clark were having breakfast beside a pool one beautiful, sunny morning when Alan declared that they would form The Straits. They had been presented with the opportunity to put together a band to play at a charity show at the Royal Albert Hall and as Alan had recently discovered Terence Reis and heard him performing some Dire Straits songs rather brilliantly, it seemed the logical thing to do would be to form a band around him, and what a band they put together!

l 8th FeBruary hendre hall, talyBOnt CaBaret Pontio: hanGGai Enjoy the sounds of Hanggai, the folk group from afar dubbed as the ‘Mongolian answer to the Pogues’!

The Royal Albert Hall show was a resounding success. Following this, they arranged some more shows, then some more, and now, two years later, they are on a world tour and planning a record of their material. The Straits are back! the straits will be appearing at the Pavilion theatre, Rhyl on 8th February at 7:30pm. For more information visit or call 01745 330000.

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l 20th FeBruary POWis hall, BangOr university earlY MusiC BanGor Bangor’s own music ensemble presents a mixed programme of 17th and 18th century European music. tickets can be purchased via the website www.pontio. where you can also find more events at Pontio, or by calling the box office at 01248 382828. You can also buy tickets at the Pontio shop on Bangor high street.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 11


Elan Valley Events

l Reservoir Roundabout 4th January Join the annual walking or running challenge in and around the Elan and Claerwen Valleys. Twelve and 22 mile courses are available. You can register in person at the Elan Valley Visitor Centre. l Through a Volunteer’s Eyes Exhibition 4th – 19th January A collection of unique images and experiences collected from the Friends of Elan Valley volunteer group that help the rangers with the management and care of the Elan Valley Estate. Open from 10am until 4pm at the visitor centre. l Paint the Winter Landscape Watercolour Workshop 12th January Learn how to paint the winter landscape. From rolling snow drifts to frost covered rocks and from skeletal trees to icecovered streams, all this and much more will be covered in this one-day workshop. There will be demonstrations and step-by-step tuition throughout the day. Held 10am - 4pm at the visitor centre. l Star Meeting 26th January Come and learn about telescopes and the dark skies of Elan. Meet at the visitor centre from 7.30pm until 9pm. l National Nest Box Day 15th February Turn up anytime between 11am and 4pm at the visitor centre and build your own nest box using Elan Valley timber. l Knock Knock on the Fairy Door Workshop 16th February Make a little magic at Elan Valley while making fairy doors and little houses. Suitable for all ages. Meet at the visitor centre at 2pm until 4pm. Please book for this event on 01597 810898. The Elan Valley Visitor Centre is located in Elan Valley, Rhayader (LD6 5HP). Find out more at uk or call the visitor centre on 01597 810880.

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ALL ABOARd! The Vale of Rheidol Railway is widely regarded as the finest way to see the stunning Rheidol Valley. The railway has been delighting passengers with its spectacular views for over 100 years since it opened in 1902 and it continues to be popular with visitors of all ages to this day. The Vale of Rheidol Railway will be open this February half term, so it’s the perfect time to venture out with the kids for a trip along this historic railway and a not-to-be-missed opportunity to see the Rheidol Valley in the frosty weather. If you happen to miss half term, then don’t worry – the railway will also be open on weekends during winter. See a full timetable of services at or call 01970 625819 to make a booking.

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Making Music

As part of their 71st season, Welshpool Music Club have an exciting programme of professional musicians bringing high quality music to Welshpool. l 16th January, Mishka Rushdie Momen

Mishka (born 1992) is a postgraduate scholar and student of Joan Havill at the Guildhall School, where she previously studied for five years with Imogen Cooper as her only student. Her concert experience includes most of the major UK venues as well as New York, Weimar, Prague , Mumbai and Cologne.

l 13th February, Y-Squared

The piano and cello duo was formed after Yelian He was introduced to Yasmin Rowe at a master class in 2008. Noted for their exceptionally creative programming and electric partnership, Y-Squared performs a wide variety of repertoire ranging from Boccherini to Kapustin. Find out more about the Welshpool Music Club at www.

Acis and Galatea Following on from the success of last year’s tour of

Britten’s wonderful comedy Albert Herring, Mid Wales Opera in partnership with the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama bring you another operatic gem – one of the most famous pastoral operas ever written, Acis and Galatea by George Frederic Handel (pictured) with words by poet John Gay. The opera tells an enchanting story from ancient mythology. Acis is the son of the spirit Pan, Galatea a nymph of the sea. They fall in love, only to be thwarted by the monstrous Cyclops – Polyphemus. In a jealous rage he murders Acis, leaving Galatea bereft. In her despair, she turns the blood of her dead lover into a river, forever flowing into the sea. See Acis and Galatea at Theatre Hafren in Newtown on Friday 7th February. To book your tickets, visit or call the box office on 01686 614555. You can find out more about Mid Wales Opera at

What’s On at the Aberystwyth Arts Centre Dick Whittington and the Pi-rats of the Caribbean 9th – 25th January Join Dick Whittington and his amazing cat as they journey to London to make their fortune. The streets may be paved with gold, but Dick Whittington must defeat the baddie, King Rat, and get the girl! A traditional pantomime with a live band, stunning choreography, plenty of slapstick comedy and much more. Oh yes there is!

Stuart Maconie: The People’s Songs, 7th February Spend an evening in the company of this popular and prolific TV and radio presenter, journalist, columnist and author as talks about his new book and epic radio series, a social history of modern Britain told through pop singles.

Bolshoi Ballet: Jewels, 19th January Inspired by New York’s 5th Avenue famous jewelleries, this triptych is a tribute to women and to the cities of Paris, New York and Saint Petersburg. Streamed live from Moscow.

Of Mice and Men, 11th February The story of George Milton and Lenny Small, two very different men bound together by providence. Set against the backdrop of the American Great Depression, they hatch a plan to leave their life of poverty behind and start anew. It seems so simple, and perhaps that’s what is so beautiful about it, but fate intervenes.

Trio Valore 31st January Formed originally from Paul Weller’s formidable live band of the mid 2000s, the Trio is a soulmod-jazz super group, in great demand for their live shows. The Snow Queen, 2nd February Gerdas love for her missing friend Kay spurs her to undertake a long and dangerous journey. Through many strange lands she travels, encountering mysterious folk and magical creatures, never losing hope thatshe will succeed in her search. But what if she finds him? How will she bring him back from the frozen realm of the Snow Queen? Mark Thomas: 100 Acts of Minor Dissent 2nd February Mark Thomas is well versed in the art of creative mayhem and over the years his troublemaking has changed laws, cost companies millions and annoyed many. Bad behaviour with a purpose. David Gest’s Legends of Soul Live Concert 5th February David Gest has teamed up with soul songstress Candi Staton to hunt for a UK talent to record a new single with the renowned singer. The dazzling line-up of this 30date tour includes original members of the Temptations Review.

What’s On in brief

l 1st January New Year’s Day Walk Recover from the excesses of New Year’s Eve and shake off your hangover with an eight-mile guided walk at Llanwrtyd Wells. l 4th January and 15th February Rag Rugging Learn the techniques involved in rag rugging at the National Wool Museum, located four miles east of Newcastle Emlyn.

Jimeoin: Yes, Yes, Whatever…?!, 19th February Hilarious world-class stand-up from one of live comedy’s internationally acclaimed masters! A fluid mixture of his signature observations, with hawk eye dissection of more of the absurdities of life and how we live it. The 39 Steps, 19th – 21st February If you mix a Hitchcock masterpiece with a juicy spy novel, add a dash of Monty Python and you have The 39 Steps, a fast-paced whodunnit for anyone who loves the magic of theatre! Tree of Leaf and Flame, 22nd February Tales from The Mabinogi with storyteller Daniel Morden, Oliver Wilson-Dickson (violin) and Dylan Fowler (guitar). Haunting storytelling and dazzling musicianship come together in this unique retelling of the oldest stories of Britain. The World According to John Bird, 25th February John Bird started the publishing phenomena The Big Issue Magazine. John’s story flows into unexpected territory, which adds excitement to this loosely planned adventure. Along the way you learn how John came from abject poverty to become a revolutionary who can flout his superiority to Prime Ministers and pop-stars for and on behalf of the poor.

l 25th January Heart Cart Celebrate St Dwynwen’s Day With a day of creative children’s activities at the National Wool Museum. l 31st January Dragon Quest An event for Chinese New Year, but with unmistakable Welsh style. A family evening out with fire eaters, jesters, barbeque dragon feet and crackling pork baps at Nanteos Mansion (see our review on page 59). l 7th February Wu String Quartet Formed in 2002 by Qian Wu, the Wu String Quartet has performed many times on Radio 3, in the Wigmore Hall, the Purcell Room and the BBC Proms and now they’re coming to Coleg Meirion-Dwyfor in Dolgellau.

To book tickets or to see more events at the Aberystwyth Arts Centre visit www. or call the box office on 01970 623232.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 13


Frances Hoggan Born in Wales, Frances’ life would take On Track

Grab your chance to enjoy the scenic route of the Talyllyn Railway in the crisp winter weather this February half term as the railway opens specially for the school holidays! The railway line runs for seven and a quarter miles through the beautiful Fathew valley, and was originally built in the 19th century to transport slate from the Bryn Eglwys quarries 2014’s Gregynog near Abergynolwyn. Festival gets off to These days, the railway an early start with a performance from is primarily a tourist the Alberni String attraction, but it’s still Quartet. As well as very much the railway giving visitors the that it always was – a chance to see the rural byway where the world-renowned pace of life is gentle, the quartet who are known average speed of the for their widely ranged train is less than 9 miles an classical string quartet repertoire from Haydn hour and you can enjoy and Mozart to Bartók an unhurried journey and Benjamin Britten, the performance will along the valley. also be raising money for the upcoming Find out about Gregynog Festival. During the course of Talyllyn Railway DID YOU KNOW ? the evening, visitors can get a sneak peak and see a full of the full programme for the festival Even though he didn’t schedule at that will be held at Gregynog Hall this invent the forms, Franz www.talyllyn. June. The Alberni String Quartet will Hayden is known as or call appear at Gregynog Hall on Friday ‘the Father of the 17th January at 8pm. Tickets are £10 the booking for adults and £2 for young people. For office on Symphony’ and ‘Father tickets and further information, visit 01654 710472. of the String Quartet’

All the Right Strings or telephone 01686 207100.

Guarding Hay Castle Trustees of Hay Castle, in the heart of mid-Wales, are set to apply for a

her to Paris, Zurich and the United States, with some great achievements along the way…

Frances Elizabeth Hoggan was the first British woman to receive a doctorate in medicine from a university in Europe, and the first female doctor to be registered in Wales. Born in Brecon – where her father was a curate – she was a curious child with a keen sense of adventure. In 1846, when she was three, she moved with her family to Glamorgan and was later schooled in Cowbridge and Windsor. During her teenage years, she had an illegitimate baby and, despite the stigma, her own mother was supportive and raised the little girl herself, telling people it was her own daughter. Hoping to become a doctor, Frances continued her studies in Paris and Düsseldorf, obtaining her medical qualification from the University of Zurich in 1870 (pictured). At the time, this university was the only one in Europe that accepted female students. Frances completed the six-year course in only three years, apparently learning Sanskrit in her spare time! Returning to London, she began her own practice specialising in the diseases of women and children and, in 1874, she met, and married Dr George Hoggan, an ex-serviceman. Together they established the first husband and wife medical practice in the UK. However, George’s health had begun to deteriorate and he died, at the age of 54, and the clinic closed. Frances continued to campaign on social issues, touring the United States and lived until 1927. Her cremated remains are interred alongside George’s, in Woking cemetery.

£5 million grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund in order to safeguard the future of the historic site. If the request is accepted, the 12th century castle, home to some of the oldest untouched medieval ruins in the country, could see renovation work begin at the end of 2015 and become a major centre for culture, arts and education. Hay Castle replaces an earlier, smaller fortification built on an artificial mound close to the parish church – the present structure, built by Lord William de Braose, fourth Lord of Bramber, has had a long and chequered past. Prince Llewellyn, the last indigenous Prince of Wales, torched the castle in the 1230s and King Henry III funded its rebuilding before it was returned to the de Breos family. In 1322, the castle came under siege from Edward II’s forces who gave it into wardship, and in 1353, the castle was destroyed by fire during Owain Glyndwr’s rebellion, leaving it in a ‘ruinous state’. Hay Castle became the home of the Dukes of Buckingham from 1444 until Edward, 3rd Duke of Buckingham, was beheaded in 1521, his estates confiscated. The 18th and 19th centuries saw a variety of tenants leasing the castle. Part of the present structure (acquired by bibliophile Richard Booth in 1961) shows evidence of the fire damage and neglect that have seriously damaged the buildings. In 2011, the Hay Castle Trust bought the site for £2 million.

14 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

From luxury bedrooms to private dining rooms to civil ceremonies to marquees in the grounds we pride ourselves on our attention to detail ensuring you and your guests will be left with enduring, fond and lingering memories of a perfect day.

History, Elegance, and Romance

Whether you’re looking for action, adventure, history, heritage or romance, there’s something for everyone around Nanteos Mansion. Nanteos Mansion, Aberystwyth, Ceredigion, Wales SY23 4LU t:01970 600522

Located between the majestic sweep of Cardigan Bay and the rolling Cambrian Mountains, Nanteos Mansion is a wonderful historic house, with fabulous food, stunning scenery, attentive staff and even, some say, the occasional ghost! Nanteos Mansion will take your breath away. A special offer for Yattar Yattar readers. Book an overnight stay at Nanteos and enjoy a 15% discount! Simply mention Yattar Yattar magazine when you book to take advantage of this offer.

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WHAT’S ON CHESHIRE Jodrell Bank events A Beginner’s Guide to Observing the Heavens 22nd January

A talk with Emeritus professor Ian Morison aimed at showing you how to find your way around the sky using smart phones, tablets and laptops along with planispheres, magazines and websites. You will be shown how to find out where and when planets and other celestial objects are visible and how best to observe them with the naked eye, binoculars and beginner’s telescopes.

Big Garden Birdwatch with RSPB 26th January

Join Macclesfield, RSPB Wildlife Explorers and the Macclesfield RSPB Group are at Jodrell Bank for the RSPB’s annual Big Garden Birdwatch. There will be advice on using binoculars and telescopes and help with identifying common garden birds as well as lots of helpful hints on completing your own bird population survey at home.

Telescopes for the Amateur Astronomer 26th February

A talk with Emeritus professor Ian Morison describing and showing examples of the types of telescopes now available for use by amateurs to observe the planets, stars and galaxies, highlighting their relative strengths and weaknesses. Find out more about events at Jodrell Bank Visitor Centre by visiting or call 01477 571766 for more information.

Mabel’s War

Island Life Chester Zoo are creating a lazy boat journey ride as part of the £30million Islands project that will give zoo visitors an unrivalled view of many exotic creatures. Islands brings together the isles of the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, Bali, Sumatra, Sumba and Sulawesi and the meandering boat ride will transport visitors on a 15-minute journey taking in the sights of Sumatran orang-utans, tigers, banteng and many more. The ride will be the first of its kind for any animal attraction in the UK. ‘Islands gives visitors the best of both worlds – the opportunity to stroll through these magnificent islands on foot or to take the more leisurely option of the boat trip,’ says Chester Zoo’s Simon Mann, who is spearheading the project. ‘The Lazy Boat Journey will give visitors a taste of what it is like to explore the wild and take in some breathtaking sights including orangutans swinging through the treetops.’ Construction of the riverbed is already underway and Islands, including the boat ride, is expected to open to visitors in 2015. Find out more about Chester Zoo at

16 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Young actors and actresses will have the opportunity to take part in an exciting new drama project at the Cheshire Military Museum in Chester this winter. Mabel’s War, run by Steph from Minerva Arts, gives participants the chance to put together a brand new piece of drama based on the notebooks of Mabel, a nurse in the First World War. Mabel’s War is a partnership project with Cheshire Military Museum, Grosvenor Museum and Minerva Arts and is part of Cheshire’s Great War Stories, a project commemorating the centenary of the Great War. Mabel’s War is suitable for 7

A drawing discovered in one of Mabel’s notebooks showing a First World War nurse caring for a sold ier

to 11 year olds. There are limited places, so booking is essential. Workshops will begin on Saturday 18th January, 10am to 12pm and will take place once a week for 10 weeks (breaking for half term) at Cheshire Military Museum, Cheshire. For more details, email

Reasons to Visit Cheshire: MuseuMs

With over 20 accredited museums in Cheshire, you’re never stuck for a fun day out with the family. Our favourite is ellesmere Port’s National Waterways Museum, pleasantly situated on the banks of the Mersey and the Manchester ship Canal. There’s boats, historic buildings, a working blacksmith’s forge (complete with resident blacksmith!) and indoor displays. For a truly special evening, head to the museum on December 6th for a mix of Christmas music and carols performed by the Wirral singers and Ringers in the museum’s Waterside Café.

Watch This Space!

What’s On... in Brief

The former Odeon cinema on Northgate Street in Chester is to be transformed into an iconic cultural centre. The Grade II listed building will be restored and converted into a contemporary city library, including café, study spaces and a 120-seat cinema. An 800seat theatre will be housed in a new building that will be connected to the existing one by open foyer spaces. The old cinema will be transformed thanks to the work of national construction company, Kier Construction, and multi-award winning architects, Bennetts Associates, who were previously appointed in 2012 to produce the concept design for the new cultural complex. They will begin detailed design work immediately and construction work is expected to begin in February 2015. Kier Construction’s managing director Gary Wintersgill said of the announcement: ‘We are delighted to be part of the team selected to deliver what will be an outstanding new cultural facility for Chester and the wider community. Chester’s brief is incredibly imaginative, demonstrating that it is possible for redundant buildings to be transformed and regenerate the cultural and economic life of our city centres.’ Keep up to date with all the latest developments as this exciting project unfolds at

…? Did you know ath e d s n’ fter nelso

a ttle of during the Ba body s hi trafalgar, me in ho d was carrie y to nd ra b a cask of it e rv prese

From Cheshire to palermo: lady emma hamilton emily lyon was born in 1765 in neston. as a teenager, she was sent from hawarden to london to work as a nursery-maid and quickly attracted attention because of her quick wit, intelligence and radiant beauty. it wasn’t long before she became a much sought after model, working in various locations including the drury lane theatre. she started to call herself emma hart and began to pose for renowned artists, most notably, George romney. in 1781, emma met and moved in with Charles Francis Grenville. however, their relationship was not destined to last as Greville was looking to marry but needed a ‘suitable’ wife – emma’s reputation was far too colourful for her to be considered. Greville asked his uncle, sir William hamilton (the British envoy to the kingdom of naples) to take her. sir William, in his sixties, demurred but, after much thought he agreed that emma should join him in naples, where she arrived in 1786. in 1791, she and hamilton were married although it was a loveless union. however, emma blossomed in the environment in which she found herself. as the wife of an english minister, she became a great social power, meeting many important people, including lord nelson, and embarking on a passionate affair with him. strangely, sir William accepted the relationship and the three of them rented a large house in palermo. in 1800, when the British government recalled hamilton, nelson returned with them to england. after hamilton’s death in 1803, they moved to surrey, and shortly after nelson returned to sea where he was killed at the Battle of trafalgar. Following nelson’s death, emma quickly exhausted the small pension left to her by sir William and spent 13 months in a debtors’ prison before her untimely death at the age of 49.

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l Until 3rd January, Seasons Greetings design your own ‘thank you’ card inspired by the Victorian era and complete the family trail through Quarry Bank mill in styal, Cheshire. l 18th, 20th and 25th January, Beauty and the Beast a fairy story by lucy Kirkwood and a fun family show for all ages. this was first shown at the National theatre, and is now coming to the little theatre on Gloucester street in Chester. l 723rd January, The Incredible East India Company roy Willis presents a history of the east india Company, which once ruled and shaped British india as well as much of malaya and the east indies. presented by the Chester lecture society held in the Grosvenor museum, Chester.

l 2nd February, Artisan Market princess street in Knutsford town centre will host over 100 of the very finest food, drink, art and craft stall holders, plus music, entertainment and activities.

l 15th February, Concert by the Brodsky String Quartet the Brodsky string Quartet return to holmes Chapel for the fourth time since 1982. the concert will take place in the holmes Chapel leisure Centre. l 827th February, Richard III – Bloody Tyrant? dr phil stone, chairman of the richard iii society, will tell us more than we ever knew about this allegedly infamous monarch. presented by the Chester lecture society and to be held in the Grosvenor museum, Chester.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 17


Lords and Ladies Winter Events at Tatton Park h Antiques and Fine Art Fair, Friday 17th to Sun 19th January 50 leading antique and fine art dealers will be coming to Tatton Park offering a wide range of antiques, art, sculpture and decorative pieces. Among the goods on offer are period furniture, arts and crafts, English watercolours, Persian rugs and carpets, Victorian and 20th century jewellery, fine silver, glass, enamels, prints, English clocks, decorative mirrors and much more. Open from 11am to 5pm.

h The Wedding Show, Saturday 1st to Sun 2nd February Held in a luxurious marquee within the grounds of Tatton Park, the Wedding Show is packed to the brim with over 150 of the area’s finest wedding suppliers. Whether you’re looking for a florist, photographer, cake or wedding car for your big day, the Wedding Show will have something perfect for you.

The Port Sunlight Museum lies in the heart of the historic garden village of Port Sunlight and it’s the ideal place to start your visit. At the museum, you can learn all about the village’s creator, ‘Soap King’ William Hesketh Lever as well as find out just what it was like to live and work in the village during the Edwardian and Victorian periods. The museum is currently home to a very special exhibition: ‘The Lady Behind the Lord’ is a unique exhibition that gives visitors an insight into the life of Elizabeth Ellen Hulme, the wife of William Hesketh Lever. On display you’ll find her personal mementos and information highlighting her involvement in all aspects of village life, giving visitors a flavour of her importance and her interest in the community. ‘The Lady Behind the Lord’ will be on show until March 2014. The Port Sunlight Museum is open daily from 10am until 5pm. Find out more at or call the visitor services team on 0151 644 6466.

Streets Ahead!

The clock on Chester’s Eastgate Street is one of the most famous in the UK, but do you know how it came to be there?

Chester’s Eastgate Street has been included in a top ten compilation of Britain’s best historic streets in a list put together by The Telegraph. Up against formidable opponents, h Scarecrow including London’s Petticoat Festival, Lane, Gold Hill in Shaftesbury Saturday 15th (famous for the iconic Hovis – Sunday 23rd advert) and Church Row February The Royal Mecca clock in Hampstead, Chester Explore the in Saudi Arabia, situated managed a creditable gardens and behind the overall the farm at on a skyscraper, has four fifth winner – the atmospheric Tatton Park faces, each measuring 14th century street known as ‘The Shambles’, this half term in York. Eastgate Street, one of Chester’s busiest and find over 30 150 feet in diameter shopping areas, has attracted trade for centuries, scarecrows that and its clock, the second most photographed clock in will be in residence England, (after Big Ben in London), is a popular meeting for the festival. Once you’ve found them all, place for tourists and locals alike. there will even be the chance The Eastgate clock stands proudly on the site of the original for you to have a go at making entrance to the Roman fortress of Deva, and was created in 1889 your own scarecrow! to commemorate the diamond jubilee of Queen Victoria. Initially its installment was controversial; some thought that the bright red Tatton Park is located in Knutsford. and gold finish made it too garish and unsuited to its conservative Most events are subject to car surroundings. J. B. Joyce and Co. of Whitchurch (thought to be the entry charge and normal attraction oldest clock manufacturer in the world), made the mechanism and entry charges. For more information until 1974 sent a technician to Chester each week to wind it.

Did You Know…?

visit or telephone 01625 374400.

Forum Theatre l Simon and Garfunkel: Through the Years, 1st February When Paul Simon and Art Garfunkel met as youngsters in a school production of Alice in Wonderland, neither could have imagined the music career that lay before them. Follow the story of the American duo the first meeting, through the troubled waters and to their reignited friendship. Written and performed by ‘Bookends’. l Useless Beauty, 13th – 15th February When married couple Kate and Martin invite Helen and Kate’s old friend from university, Alex, round for some food, what should have been a simple social evening takes a series of unexpected turns. A new

18 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

black comedy of bad manners and good wine from Tip Top Productions. l Avenue Q, 6th – 15th March Set in a New York tenement block, Avenue Q features a cast of witty and outspoken puppets and humans. The result is a smart series of sketches linked by themes of ambitions and self-discovery, plus outrageous songs such as Schadenfreud, The Internet is for Porn and I’m Not Wearing Underwear Today. Visit www. or call 01244 341296.

What’s On at the Crewe Lyceum

l Rock ‘n’ Roll Paradise 11th January In its fourth year on the road, this spectacular rock ‘n’ roll show brings you ‘the show that never was’: enjoy hits from Elvis Presley, Jerry Lee Lewis, Buddy Holly, Roy Orbison, the Big Bopper and Eddie Cochran by an incredibly talented cast backed by the Paradise Band. l Johnny Cash Roadshow 17th January Respected singer/songwriter Clive John fronts the UK’s number one Johnny Cash tribute that shows the audience just what a real Johnny Cash show was like. l Benjamin Barker’s Final Hour 24th – 25th January The Cheshire Actors Studio presents a world premiere adaptation of the Sweeny Todd tale. The time is 1785 and the place London. A strange disappearance of a sailor named Lieutenant Thornhill, last seen entering Sweeney Todd’s establishment on Fleet Street is where the story begins. l No Jacket Required 1st February The UK’s leading Phil Collins tribute comes to the Crewe Lyceum as part of their UK tour. This stunning 11-piece band performs two hours of non-stop hits from Phil’s award-winning solo career, plus a little Genesis thrown in for good measure.

l Abbamania 7th February Abbamania are widely regarded as the UK’s top Abba tribute show, so dust off your platforms, put on your flares and enjoy an unforgettable night celebrating over 30 years of golden hits. l That’ll be the Day 13th – 14th February The nation’s longest running rock ‘n’ roll variety show returns with an all new production for 2014. With a variety of hits from the 50s, 60s and 70s and some zany comedy routines, it’s not to be missed! Visit or call 01270 368242







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WHAT’S ON SHROPSHIRE What’s On at The Theatre on the Steps l CinderellA 4TH – 25TH January The rags to riches story brought to life by Alan Frayn, maintaining the great tradition of very best of traditional pantomime. A great show for families and children of all ages.

Down the rabbit hole

Proteus Theatre invites you to follow them down the rabbit hole to Wonderland for their magical production of Alice in Wonderland. Using their trademark fusion of music, physical theatre, circus and puppetry, Proteus Theatre have created a magical and mad as a hatter version of Lewis Carroll’s classic tales Alice in Wonderland and Alice Through the Looking Glass. It’s a must-see for families and children aged five and over! See Proteus Theatre’s production of Alice in Wonderland at any of the following venues: l The Talbot Theatre, Whitchurch – Thursday 16th January £8 for adults, £7 for concessions, £6 for children and £25 for families. Book on 01948 660660. l Severn Centre, Highley – Friday 17th January £8 for adults, £5 for children and £25 for families. Book on 01746 860000. l Goodrich Village Hall – Saturday 18th January £10 for adults, £6 for children and £28 for families. Book on 01600 890502 or 01600 890609.

l Only FOOlS And BOyCie 1ST February Enjoy an intimate evening with John Challis, one of the nation’s greatest comedy actors, best known as Boycie in BBC1’s Only Fools and Horses. In this one-off show the national treasure will reveal secrets from the set with stories and anecdotes from his dazzling career.

l The BOWie exPerienCe 7TH – 8TH February One of the UK’s top tribute acts to one of the world’s greatest music icons. Laurence has received glowing reviews and has been paid the greatest compliment by David Bowie himself! The Bowie Experience spans the entire breadth of David Bowie’s career, with authentic Ziggy to Earthling outfits and great musicians, this is an act not to miss! l A BlACk COunTry FAiryTAle Ay iT, 15TH February Fizzog productions return to the Theatre on the Steps with another hilarious show. A Black Country Fairytale Ay It brings you not one, not two but a few fairytales interwoven with an added Black Country twist to spice things up a bit.

For tickets or to find out more about the Theatre on the Steps in Bridgnorth, visit or call the box office on 01746 763257.

Ironbridge Gorge Museum Events l devil’s in the details

Coalbrookdale Museum of Iron until 30th april An exhibition celebrating the steady hand and eagle eye of the Victorian trade catalogue engraver featuring large scale prints and audio description to help make the exhibition accessible to all visitors. The exhibition is included in the museum entrance fee. Museum admission is £8.25 for adults, £7.50 for 60 plus and £5.50 for children. l Ironbridge archaeology

Workshop, The Long Warehouse 25th January, 10am – 4pm Workshop by Jo Cook,

20 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

archaeologist and member of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation. This is part of a series of archaeology related workshops by the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust for members of the public with an interest in archaeology. Admission is £8 per person including light refreshments. To book a place contact Sam Colclough at samantha. Find out more about the Ironbridge Gorge Museums and see events throughout the year at or telephone visitor enquires on 01952 433424.

Shropshire Snippets

All for a good cause

A celebratory St David’s Day concert featuring l Flax for the Memories two of north Work is scheduled to Wales’ finest begin in early 2014 on the choirs – the redevelopment of the historical Maelgwn Male Flax Mill Maltings. The site Voice Choir and at Ditherington, north of the Penybont Shrewsbury town centre, is Fawr Male Voice renowned for its Grade 1 and 2 Choir – will be listed historic buildings, which held at Theatre Severn this February. As well as the two choirs, include the world’s first ironthe concert will also feature harpist Dylan Cernyw, mezzo framed building, affectionately soprano Eleri Owen Edwards. The concert, as well as celebrating known as ‘the grandfather of all St David’s Day, is being held in support of the Lingen Davies skyscrapers.’ Thanks to a £12.8m Cancer Fund, an independent charity dedicated to supporting grant from the Heritage Lottery quality cancer care for patients in Shropshire and mid Wales. Fund, the buildings are to be The Lingen Davies Cancer Fund began in 1979 when Bernard transformed into a community Lingen, as mayor of Shrewsbury, with the help of local accountant hub for learning, leisure and Frank Davies raised funds to build and equip a new radiotherapy business enterprise. Preparation department at the Royal Shrewsbury Hospital. The charity raised for the project began back in over £3m to fund the building of the Lingen Davies Centre October, and Shropshire which opened in late 2012. In 2013 and beyond the County Council is charity will continue to fund equipment and facilities confident that for cancer patients locally. Projects that have DON’T FORGET! the three-year already been funded include a third endoscopy To receive a restoration plan suite at the Princess Royal Hospital, Telford. will create around personal copy of The celebratory St David’s Day concert 300 new jobs. will be held at Theatre Severn in Shrewsbury Yattar Yattar direct to Designed on Saturday 22nd February at 7:30pm. your door, turn to page in 1797 by Tickets cost £19 per person, including a architect Charles 100 for our great programme and are available from the theatre Bage, the mill new subscription box office – call 01743 281281. You can find out remained in use more about the Lingen Davies Cancer Fund at offer! until 1886 when it was converted into a maltings for the brewing industry until 1987. English Heritage took the mill over in 2005 and created its The Russian State Ballet and Opera House redevelopment plan along with are returning to Shropshire, bringing with Shropshire Council, the Friends them completely new performances of the Flax Mill Maltings and the of Carmen and La Traviata, two of the Homes and Communities Agency. most popular and accessible operas. Both productions feature an impressive l By Royal Appointment! cast and a live orchestra who bring the Harper Adams University famous compositions of Georges Bizet entertained an esteemed guest and Giuseppe Verdi to life. recently when Her Royal Highness, Carmen is the perfect introduction to Princess Anne paid a visit to the opera for the uninitiated and it includes campus, near Edgmond. The some of the best known tunes in opera, Princess Royal was attending a such as ‘The Toreador Song’. In four acts, special ceremony, which saw her it tells the story of the downfall of Don installed as the university’s first José, a naïve soldier who is seduced by Carmen, a free spirited ever chancellor – a ceremonial femme fatale. José abandons his childhood sweetheart and figurehead entitled to confer deserts from his military duties to pursue her, yet loses Carmen’s degrees at graduations as well love to the glamorous toreador Escamillo, after which José kills as act as an ambassador for the her in a jealous rage. university. The princess has long La Traviata is a love story shrouded had connections to the university – in sacrifice and misunderstanding. The she was made an Honorary Fellow title means literally ‘the fallen women’ of Harper Adams in 2006, and has or, more figuratively, ‘the woman made a handful of visits since to who strayed’. A tragic tale of society formally open several departments. and morality, La Traviata combines During a visit last year, ‘The compelling characters with hugely Princess Royal Hall’ (a residential powerful and instantly recognisable block for students) was named in melodies, making it one of the most her honour. Dr David Llewellyn, popular operas of all time. Vice-Chancellor at the university At Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury. said, ‘It is a great honour for the You can see Carmen on Tuesday 4th university that Her Royal Highness February and La Traviata on Monday has accepted this position.’ 17th February. Tel 01743 281281.

What’s On in brief l 27th January, Giselle

One of the most popular Romantic ballets of all time will be streamed live from the Royal Opera House to the cinema screen in the Ludlow Assembly Rooms. l 2nd February, Dressage

with Prix Caprilli Netley Hall Equestrian will be hosting this public event which includes a local qualifier round and British dressage championships classes. l 6th February, Free Fly-tying

Tuition Fly-tying lessons with just a minimal cost for materials are on offer in The Unicorn Inn, Lower Corve Steet, Ludlow. If you fancy tying your own flies (for fly-fishing!) then why not give it a go? l 9th February, The Ramblers

Group Walk Join the Ramblers Group in a circular walk from Craven Arms. Meets at the Craven Arms Discovery Centre at 10:30 in the morning.

Carmen and La Traviata

l 12th – 13th February Energy

Now Expo Featuring over 160 renewable energy product and service suppliers, Energy Now Expo in the Telford International Centre showcases renewable energy opportunities available to both agricultural and rural communities. l 15th – 23rd February Half

Term Trail Put your skills to the test with a special trail for families at Stokesay Castle, near Craven Arms. Search the castle grounds to find clues and claim your tasty treat! l 26th February – 19th March

Roman Cookery Workshop Get hands-on and learn about the authentic cooking techniques, ingredients and recipes of the times and help to create your own Roman dishes. Held at Wroxeter Roman City.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 21


What’s On in brief

What’s On at Theatre Severn

l 4th January amber lizard Three-piece rock covers band, Amber Lizard, have something to please everyone with a set including everything from Lady Gaga to the Rolling Stones. Don’t miss them at the Bull Hotel in Ludlow.

l The PiTy of War 26th January Matthew Trusler is joined by the internationally renowned pianist, Martin Roscoe for performances of sonatas by Elgar, Janácek and Debussy, all written during the Great War. There will also be readings by actor Timothy West of Wilfred Owen’s letters and poems.

l 7th January north West Passage and more A lecture by Bob Shepton who’s sailed into some of the loneliest unexplored Arctic regions and has twice been presented with the Tilman Award. Held at the Gateway, Shrewsbury.

Win Win Win!

making music

Win a pair of tickets to Tap Factory at Theatre Severn on 14th February! For your chance to win, email your name and contact number to editorial@yattaryattar.

Oswestry’s popular annual Youth Music Festival returns for 2014 l 17th January to celebrate the most talented Juice ensemble local youngsters. For the musical Juice (below) present their among you, there’s still time to astonishingly diverse songbook enter for both solo musicians and of a cappella love songs at the ensembles aged 25 and under. Hive, Shrewsbury. After the festival, there will be a concert to celebrate the winners, including performances by a number of invited winners from the festival, the competition for the Junior Town Council Cup and the final competition for the l 21st January – 2nd February Oswestry Town Council Cup. The final concert will conclude with Cinderella Catch this family the presentation of winners trophies by the mayor of Oswestry, favourite at the Belfrey Theatre Councillor Chris Scholfield. This year’s Oswestry Youth Music Festival in Wellington. will take place in venues throughout the town from 27th February to 1st March and the celebration l 17th February boat to row This Midlands quintet have a Winners’ Concert will be held in Christ good reputation thanks to Church, Oswestry on 2nd March at 2pm. their buoyant, deft and did you Know? The closing date for any entries is 17th harmonic performances. January. Visit Little Jimmy Osmond Performing at the or call 01691 680222 to find out more or Henry Tudor House in was the youngest to get an entry form. Shrewsbury.

Taking Flight

ever artist to have a number one hit – when he was only nine years old!

Get your new year off to a flying start with a visit to the RAF Cosford Museum, where you can now see a recently-arrived Focke-Wulf Fw 190 A-8. These German fighter aircraft were widely used by the Luftwaffe during World War Two and were single-seat single-engine multi-role fighter-bombers, capable of carrying a larger bomb load than its counterpart the Messerschmitt Bf109. One of the more unusual roles for the Fw 190 was as part of the twin-aircraft drone combination, code-named Mistletoe or Mistel. A single engine fighter was mounted on top of a twin engine bomber, and on lining up with the target the fighter detached itself, leaving the bomber, packed with explosives, to impact the target. Cosford’s Fw 190 is a unique survivor of a Mistel combination. After being given corrosion treatment and repainted in an authentic daylight fighter scheme, the Fw 190 was first put on display in the Imperial War Museum, Lambeth, but has since been transferred to the RAF Cosford Museum where it can be enjoyed by all visiting aviation fans. Find out more about the RAF Cosford Museum at or call 01902 376200.

22 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

l PunT and dennis: Life on The road 29th January Steve Punt and Hugh Dennis live the dream as they cruise the contraflow lanes, follow the one-way systems, unwrap the pasties and sip the service-station coffees of Britain in their quest to find somewhere to park vaguely near a theatre in your town. l Beyond The Barricade 31st January The UK’s longest running musical theatre concert includes songs from some the most popular musicals, including Miss Saigon, The Lion King, Phantom of the Opera, West Side Story, Jesus Christ Superstar, Blood Brothers, The Jersey Boys and of course, Les Miserables. l a Vision of eLVis 1st February Rob Kingsley is ‘A Vision of Elvis’, which is accepted by many as one of the world’s leading touring Elvis productions. l sWeeny tOdd: the demOn barber OF Fleet street 9th – 10th February Sweeney Todd the musical is the dramatic Victorian tale of an English barber and serial killer who murders his customers with a straight razor, and with the help of his accomplice Mrs Lovett, processes their corpses in to meat pies! l GyLes BandreTh: LookinG for haPPiness, 16th February When Gyles Brandreth set out to find the seven secrets of happiness he started in Las Vegas and ended up in the psychiatrist’s chair. Find out who gets to be happy and how… l an audience WiTh MichaeL PorTiLLo, 25th February Politician, social commentator and TV documentary maker Michael Portillo talks about his many and varied experiences as the former Conservative MP for Kensington and Chelsea, combative Cabinet Minister and passionate lover of steam railways.

Go online to www. or call 01743 281281.

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Kick of the new year with a ‘Night at the Musicals’. Beyond the Barricade brings together all your favorite songs from the West End Shows climaxing with a spectacular finale from Les Miserables!





Following the sold-out performance of Madam Butterfly in February 2013, the Russian State Ballet and Opera House brings to you the opera classic, Carmen.



Hailed as the originators of British folkrock music, Fairport Convention return to perform a mix of long-established favourites and new material.

FRI 14 - SAT 15 FEB


A dazzling, rhythm based theatre show encompassing all genres of dance and featuring a live band and dancers to set your pulses racing, The Tap Factory is a place where feet have a life of their own and the rhythm never stops.

Box Office 01743 281 281 Book Online Theatre Severn, Frankwell Quay, Shrewsbury SY3 8FT


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arts alive l COntaCt theatre: the

noviCe DeteCtive Sophie’s father is missing. With the audience’s help, and that of her Gran, Sophie is determined to get to the bottom of it. Mixing theatre, storytelling, stand-up and clowning, writer and performer Sophie Willan tells an autobiographical tale that is heart-warming, heart breaking, ridiculous and sort of true. 4th february, 7.30pm the talbot theatre, Whitchurch 5th february, 7.30pm at the Wem town hall 6th february, 7.30pm sparc theatre, Bishops Castle l KePOW theatre: Crazy little thinG CalleD love! A comic look at love, in all its many forms. Romantic love. Platonic love, a love for a hobby, or a love for one’s pet. The love of money. Or the love of a God. You name it, this show explores it! Suitable for all ages except very young children. 15th february, 7.30pm Chapel lawn village hall l CsCaPe danCe COmPany: if

the shoe fits If the Shoe Fits transports the audience into the magical world of a very special kind of shoe shop, where every box contains its own special story. A delightfully interactive show for children aged three to seven and adults. 22nd february, 2pm farlow and oreton village hall l CLive CarrOLL: 1000 years

of MusiC When the music press describes someone as ‘probably the best and most original young acoustic guitar player and composer in Britain’ they’re worth looking out for! Clive Carol plays everything from traditional, classical and jazz with inspirations running from newgrass and fusion jazz to Irish stylings. 8th february, 7.30pm snailbeach village hall l neW rOPe string band An indefinable confusion of music, comedy and circus that manages to please absolutely everybody. 21st february, 7.30pm silvester horne institute, Church stretton

see full details and online bookings at

Local Hero: Captain Webb

From an early age, Matthew Webb had a strong affinity with water. As a boy, he would play in the river Severn and was an extremely proficient swimmer – and once saved his younger brother, Henry, from drowning. Born in 1848 in Dawley, Webb yearned for adventure, leaving home at the age of 12 to train as a merchant seaman. It was in the mid-Atlantic that his skill in the water was called upon again, diving into the sea in an attempt to save the life of a comrade who had fallen from the rigging. Although the man died, Webb was awarded £100 (a huge amount then). Highly respected, Webb rose up the ranks to become ship’s mate and, ultimately, captain. In 1873, Captain Webb read an account of a failed attempt to swim the English Channel. Setting his sights on completing the task himself, he quit his job and immersed himself in training. By 1875, Webb was ready. However, his first attempt was stymied when a sudden storm blew up a few hours into his swim. Undeterred, he tried again a fortnight later, smeared in porpoise oil and supported by three boats. A jellyfish sting hindered his progress and he became so exhausted towards the end that success was doubtful. Finally, after 22 gruelling hours, Webb landed near Calais exhausted but triumphant. Webb was now a celebrity and took part in swimming exhibitions. However, a stunt to cross the rapids under Niagara Falls ended in tragedy when he was caught did you Know? in a whirlpool and drowned. In 1909, The fastest verified Webb’s brother Thomas unveiled a swim of the channel memorial in Dawley, reading simply, was by the Australian ‘Nothing great is easy’.

Trent Grimsey on 8 September 2012, in six hours 55 minutes!

Float the Boat

The Shrewsbury and Newport Canals Trust fleet has gained its first working boat, Bittern, with the intention of using her to tow a replica tub boat, suitably modified to take passengers, as an unusual trip boat. Tub boats are very unusual as they were only 6’ wide x 20’ long and they were the standard transport on the east Shropshire canals. Bittern was expertly transported by Shebdon’s Crane Hire Ltd. of Telford, a long standing supporter of the SNCT. It was taken from the Llangollen canal at Welshpool to Shrewsbury College of Art and Technology (SCAT). Thanks to the foresight of Martyn Goodwin, one of the motor vehicle specialists at the college and the support of Ken McKerral, head of mechanical engineering department at SCAT, the boat now has a new temporary home where she will be completely stripped, checked and re-built using student power plus SNCT volunteers. This will take a few months to complete, but it is hoped that Bittern will be launched on to part of the Shrewsbury canal in the late spring of 2014. ‘At long last we have something different from motor cars for my students to get their teeth into!’ says a delighted Martyn. ‘This will be a great project to be part of, as we have all the facilities to refurbish or replace worn, rusted and damaged parts and make her as good as new again.’ Find out more about the Shrewsbury and Newport Canals Trust at

What’s On at Oakengates Theatre l CamerOn PriCe and Friends: Make a Wish Charity event 11th January Join nine-year-old Cameron and friends for an evening of variety performances to raise money for Make a Wish. l FOggy and Whit: GivinG it Gas, 22nd January This is your chance to get up close and personal with two legends of motorbike racing – four times World Superbike champion, Carl Fogarty and former British champ and TV pundit, James Whitham. A must-see for all sports fans.

l Lee hurst: thinGs that Make you Go aaarGGh! 6th February Stand-up comic, Lee Hurst, known for his appearances on Have I Got News for You and They Think It’s All Over is touring Britain to find out what really winds you up. l CreaM of Clapton 7th February One of the best and most authentic tributes to Eric Clapton, covering songs from his days in Cream and Derek and the Dominoes as well as hits from his solo career. l erth’s dinOsaur ZOO, 11th – 12th February An entertaining and highly imaginative live show that gives you the chance to meet some awesome prehistoric creatures, including the most recent addition to the Dinosaur Zoo – a carnivorous theropod known as the Australovenator. l the eleCtro sWinG Ball 14th February Feel the love and experience a unique Valentine’s Day. Expect a sensational evening of live bands, swinging DJ’s, beautiful burlesque performers, cheeky boylesque, circus performances and all sorts of treats to entertain and delight. l COLin Fry: the voiCes froM

heaven shoW, 27th February Join one of the world’s most recognised spiritualist mediums and healers. to see more shows at the oakengates theatre in telford or to book tickets online, visit or call 01952 382382.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 25

Winter Film Releases


Last Vegas 3rd January Billy (Michael Douglas), Paddy (Robert De Niro), Archie (Morgan Freeman) and Sam (Kevin Kline) have been best friends since childhood. So when Billy, the group’s sworn bachelor, finally proposes to his thirty-something (of course) girlfriend, the four head to Las Vegas with a plan to stop acting their age and relive their glory days. However, upon arriving, the four quickly realise that the decades have transformed Sin City and tests their friendship in ways they never imagined. H H H H That Awkward Moment 31st January In support of a friend devastated by a recent breakup, three guys vow to maintain their single status for as long as possible. The plan gets derailed when they each fall in love and have to secretly work around their pledge to bachelorhood while trying to decide just where it’s all going. Stars Zac Efron, Michael B Jordan and Miles Teller. H H H RoboCop 7th February The year is 2028 and multinational conglomerate OmniCorp is at the centre of robot technology. They see the chance to bring their controversial technology to the home front when Alex Murphy (Joel Kinnaman), a loving father and good cop doing his best to stem the tide of crime and corruption in Detroit, is critically injured in the line of duty. Murphy is transformed into a part-man, part-robot police officer. A reboot of the 1987 movie of the same name. H H H H The Lego Movie 14th February An ordinary Lego minifigure named Emmet (Chris Pratt) is mistakenly thought to be the extraordinary MasterBuilder who can save the Lego universe. With the help of an old mystic named Vitruvius (Morgan Freeman), a tough young lady named Wyldstyle (Elizabeth Banks) and Batman (Will Arnett), Emmet must fight to defeat the evil tyrant, Lord Business (Will Ferrell) who is bent on gluing the universe together! H H H Pompeii 21st February Set in 79 AD, Pompeii tells the story of Milo (Kit Harrington), a slave turned gladiator who finds himself in a race against time to save his true love, Cassia (Emily Browning), the beautiful daughter of a wealthy merchant who has been unwillingly betrothed to a corrupt Roman senator. As Mount Vesuvius erupts, Milo must fight his way out of the arena in order to save his beloved. H H H

down the UK on a nationwide tour. This Christmas it came to Broughton Park and my family and I we’re lucky enough to make it there through all the traffic. After about an hour queuing in the car we could finally see the red twinkling lights and Santa’s jolly face. It was magical and the children loved having their photo next to the iconic Christmas truck. I hope it returns again next year! ES H H H


It was with some trepidation I travelled to Wrexham’s William Aston Hall to see the band Bellowhead, after all, folk music has never been my genre of choice. However, when I left a good two hours later, a stomping beat still in my head, I was definitely converted. The 11 musicians who make up Bellowhead are breathtakingly talented, playing more than 20 instruments between them, and while Jon Boden is a brilliant, charismatic front man, everyone had their turn in the spotlight, guiding the more than willing audience through constant changes of mood and pace, fusing folk, rock and jazz, all at full throttle! The intense drama and theatricality of the performance, teamed with the joyful, rousing tunes and strange, almost robotic dance moves from Boden got feet stamping from the first bar, and it was easy to see why the band voted ‘Best Live Group’ at the BBC Folk Awards is taking the folk scene by storm. GC H H H H

Chester Arts Fair at Chester Racecourse

For two days, Chester Racecourse became a haven for art lovers as the Chester Arts Fair returned for its second year. With displays from major galleries from the local area and from further afield, there was certainly no shortage of aweinspiring artwork in a variety of different mediums and styles. Visitors to the fair not only had the chance to see some spectacular artwork, but also to meet and speak to the artists who created it. A demonstration by Peter Hill was a chance to see his unusual technique in action. Peter very rarely uses brushes, instead using plastic knives and even cling film to create his masterpieces. Perhaps the most interesting part of the demonstration was watching him use white spirit to ‘wash’ the oil paints, creating free-flowing runs of colour. Chester Arts Fair was a delight for both hardcore and more casual fans with something for everyone, and it’s definitely one to look out for next year. EJA H H H

Holidays are Coming Every year as soon as the iconic Coca-Cola advert appears on our TV screens we all know that Christmas is coming. Nowadays, you can get even closer to the magic as the truck heads up and

26 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Highfield Hall Fashion Show

In the last five years David Walker has held 15 charity events in the form of a Fashion Extravaganza and this November, I was invited to go along to Highfield hall Hotel in Mold and see what all the fuss was about! The fashion show included a collection of stunning evening dresses by Adore Boutique in Wrexham, modeled by a group of beautiful students from Castell Alun High School. All the money raised from tickets was donated to the charity KIM Inspire and the raffle was in aid of Special Olympics Wrexham. With a variety of stalls by local businesses and a pamper room where you could book in for a treatment, there was plenty to do. It’s worth attending just for the good cause, but I also started my Christmas shopping and won the raffle – bonus! KJB H H H

Santa Safari, Hawkstone Park

Having heard so much from friends about the Christmas festivities at Hawkstone Park Hotel, we were keen to take the kids along and see what all the fuss was about! Upon arrival, we were taken to a festively decorated waiting room to collect our tickets and have a warming cup of hot chocolate. An elf guide then took us outside to the waiting Landrovers, which drove us through the country park, under the wishing tunnel, and up the steep track to the top of the Follies. Greeted there by Barry the cheerful elf, we met some real reindeer (pictured) then entered the caves, which were decorated throughout with lights. This year, there was a Polar Express train theme, with an office to write a letter to Santa and Christmas trees. We were ushered in to meet the great man himself – ‘Have you been a good boy, then?’ – each child left clutching a gift. We were then free to explore the top of the Follies. On such a clear December day, we were treated to views stretching far across the Shropshire plains, then we were driven back to the hotel. Overall, the Santa Safari was a great experience for the younger ones. Make sure you look out for other themed Follies trips run by the hotel, including Easter and Halloween. DB H H H

Reviews West Side Story

This December Palace Theatre Manchester proudly welcomed West Side Story to join their lineup of award winning, west end shows. West Side Story is a timeless American tale, based on Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, it follows the tragic love story of Maria and Tony. Set in Westside, New York in the 1950s, it’s an emotional story of two violent street gangs. Famous songs include ‘I feel Pretty’ and ‘Maria’ and were done justice by the breathtaking singing. Katie Hall in particularly was astounding, who plays Maria. The dancing, choreographed by Jerome Robbins, was perfectly timed and beautifully enhanced by the costumes worn. West Side Story manages to include aspects of opera, ballet, musical and play, making it a truly unique performance. KJB H H H H


Winter wonderland opened its door to the public on 23rd November full of snow, glitter, reindeers and Christmas. Chester Racecourse had been transformed into a magically fun day out for all, even including a visit to Santa! There were many activities to do at the event, including an ice-skating rink, a giant snow-globe (Lauren pictured above in the snow-globe with her friends) and, for the adults, even an ice bar kitted out with full Eskimo gear! The event runs from November through till January 5th, costing just £5 entry for adults and £3 for children. Extras (such as the ice rink) do come at an additional cost, but overall the whole day including the magical winter feeling is well worth a visit, especially if you have children. Do remember it is actually winter – so wrap up warm! LF H H H

World Rally at Chirk Castle

Heading out to the family day at Chirk Castle as World Rally Championships first-timers, we were surprised by the scale and size of the event. But, we think, the organisers were too! This was the first time two special stages (short sprints) had been held at the Castle, where spectators could get really close to the action in the shadow of the castle itself with big screens set up, PA commentary and a fun park with food a supercar display. As to be expected with any event where thousands of cars and families are descending into one car park only accessible via country lanes, the queue to get in was slow but this didn’t

matter as the stages were held in the afternoon. Once parked, it was so easy to get right to the front of the main viewing area and watch each car on a timed run doing two laps off the circuit, absolutely flat out. There was a spill - one of the teams went too far wide on a corner and rolled off the road (no-one was hurt) which delayed the restart, but the images from inside the cab (it looked like they had driven through a haybarn) kept everyone entertained in the meantime! At the end of the four days of frenetic driving around the forest of North wales, Frenchman Sébastien Ogier won by a mile in a Volkswagen. Amy Williams, Winter Olympic gold medallist in 2010 on the skeleton – who co-drove a Honda Civic in the rally for the first time said: ‘It’s been an unbelievable few days. It has also been crazy and really tough, but I’ve honestly loved every minute of it. I’ve really got the bug for rallying now – I absolutely love it.’ DB H H H

Circus of Horrors at the William Aston Hall

If you’ve got a show or event, we’d love to come and review it and include it in these pages! Just send an email to editorial@yattaryattar.

jester. Jangles wore a normal jester outfit and he always lights the show up with his jokes. My favourite part was when Nurse Nellie and Jangles had a conversation using old vinyl record titles on stage. It was really fast and witty. To conclude... that was the best ever panto so far!! TB H H H H

The Nutcracker

From the opening message informing us that we would be splashed with ‘blood… and other bodily fluids’, it was apparent that the Circus of Horrors certainly isn’t for the faint-hearted. The show, which celebrates 18 years of the Circus of Horrors, is set in the plague-infested city of London in 1665. It begins with cast members quite literally climbing their way through the audience and quickly progresses to displays of dazzling acrobatics and plenty of things that, quite frankly, the human body was never meant to do, all set to the rocking soundtrack of live music from Dr Haze and the Interceptors from Hell. With daredevil balancing acts, hair hangers and demon dwarfs, plus a contortionist and a sword swallower that can really only be watched from between your fingers, the Circus of Horrors is certainly a sight worth seeing! The Circus of Horrors tour continues into March, with nearby performances at Telford, Stoke and Birmingham. Go online and visit www. to find out when you can experience the fright and delight! EJA H H H H

Sleeping Beauty Panto at Theatre Severn

As my parents drove me to my third Theatre Seven pantomine I was buzzing with excitement wondering if the play would match the standards of the previous years! When we sat down in our seats, I was relieved that we weren’t in the front row because every year we have been the actors always used water pistols to soak the people at the front. And guess what, they did it again this year as well (I don’t think the people in the front row were very happy though!). In the middle of the panto I thought to myself that this version of Sleeping Beauty is much better than the one my mum read to me when I was a toddler! My favourite characters were Brad Fitt who plays Nurse Nellie who looks after princess Aurora (who is also known as ‘Sleeping Beauty’) because she has never ceased to amaze me with his ridiculous dresses and his outragous wigs! My other favourite character was Jangles, King Eric’s

Ballet Theatre UK’s version of Tchaikovsky’s Nutcracker is surely the best way to get in the Christmas spirit. This adaptation, directed and choreographed by Christopher Moore, tells the much-loved tale of a young girl named Clara who, enchanted by a clockwork doll and wooden Nutcracker bestowed on her by her Father’s friends, is swept onto a treacherous journey when both the doll and Nutcracker come to life… But is it really only a dream? With beautiful costumes and irresistible performances from every member of the company, the whole audience was held enraptured until the final applause of the performance. Although the original production of the The Nutcracker in 1892 was unsuccessful, it is not hard to see why the ballet has enjoyed immense popularity since the 1950’s, being performed by ballet companies across the globe. This was a truly heart-warming rendition of the classic – despite the spooky performance of that wicked Mouse King! EMB H H H H

Season’s Greetings at Clwyd Theatr Cymru

Christmas came early to Clwyd Theatr Cymru this year in the form of Season’s Greetings by Alan Ayckbourn. The set perfectly portrayed a typical family home, decorated for the festive season in this truly enjoyable and genuinely funny play that follows nine relatives and in-laws as they gather, under one roof, for the Christmas period. The cast did a fantastic job of bringing the characters to life, which included house-proud Belinda, hormonal, pregnant Pattie, clumsy Phyllis and grumpy Harvey. The audience could relate to the tradition of assembling the family for Christmas, which inevitably, always ends with ridiculous arguments, upset, mania and too much alcohol! KJB H H H H

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 27

New Year New You!

How strong is your resolve to improve and use the New Year to turn over a new page in your life’s story? From New Year’s resolutions to giving yourself a beauty treat we have some great ideas for a new you in 2014 We’ve CHoSeN THe moST PoPulAr reSoluTIoNS For 2014 ANd Added Some GreAT TIPS To mAke THem A reAlITY…

n Resolution: i must get fit!

If you’re looking to get fit, New Year can be a great time to start with plenty of gyms offering reduced joining fees or other incentives if you start now. Be wary, though – only sign up if you’re actually going to go! Squeezing in the time to go for a workout around work, family and other commitments can be a challenge, so make sure you can find some time before you commit your cash. Finding a gym that’s right for you is the next challenge. Gyms usually offer a variety of classes and all have different equipment, so take a look round and find one that has the classes and courses to suit you. For those without the time or cash to go to the gym, we are lucky to have some amazing countryside on our doorsteps so why not make the most of it and go on an invigorating hike with a friend, or take a regular walk in the park. You’ll probably have so much fun you won’t even realise that you’re exercising!

n Resolution: that’s it – no alcohol foR fo a month!

After the liquid excesses of Christmas, many decide to keep January a dry month to ease the pressure on their bank accounts

and livers. However, doctors suggest that this approach is not the best and instead, those looking to improve their health should make a decision to stay off alcohol for a few days every week throughout the whole year. The reason for this is that experts are concerned that giving up alcohol in January lulls people into the false sense of security that they can go back to boozing energetically in February! If you are a social drinker and are concerned that you are drinking too much, always try to eat before you drink alcohol and don’t indulge if you are thirsty. A good tip for cutting down your alcohol intake on a night out is to alternate alcohol with soft drinks or water and to keep within drinking guidelines: women should not regularly drink more than 2-3 units per day and men 3-4. If you are concerned about your drinking habits, call Alcoholics Anonymous on 0845 769 7555 or go online to

n Resolution: i want to stop smoking

Just slap on a nicotine patch and stop smoking, right? Wrong. Quitting the demon weed is probably the hardest resolution to make, as nicotine is incredibly addictive. The good news is that there is help available. Your GP can provide information and advice about stopping

28 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Did You Know?

According to a recent study, the top resolution this year is to save money – followed closely by losing weight!

NEW YEAR, NEW YOU choose tomato-based sauces avoiding creamy ones at all costs! Finally, don’t feel obliged to finish all the food on your plate – stop when you are full! If you want advice about weight loss and healthy eating, visit the NHS Change4Life website at This free public health programme is aimed at families wanting to make healthy changes to their lifestyles.

n Resolution: i will eat moRe healthily

smoking, offer nicotine replacement therapies such as patches or chewing gum or refer you to an NHS support service. To contact this service directly and order a free Quit Kit (a box of practical tools and advice developed with experts, smokers and ex-smokers) visit www.

Having over-indulged over the Christmas period, many of us resolve to give up the chocolate and crisps in the New Year, perhaps hoping that the previous resolution to lose weight will quickly follow. For many of us, this resolution will end in disaster as we try to survive on lentils and thin air, but then end up gorging on chocolate biscuits in a moment of hunger and weakness. If you’ve ever tried to commit to eating healthily before, you’ll no doubt be aware of the age-old adage that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, and there’s certainly some truth in it – heading out to work with a full belly means that you’re less likely to snack during the morning, but that only really applies if you have a good breakfast. If you’re after something that’s delicious but will keep you full, check out Mornflake’s range of porridges and oatbrans. The slowrelease carbs in these oaty goodies means that you’ll stay full until lunch.

‘Your plan could include a family games night, a sit-down meal together or even a n Resolution: regular stroll around i want to lose weight the block’ Beware of expensive

n Resolution: i need moRe ‘family time’

This is an extremely common New Year’s resolution for people of all ages, but very few manage to achieve it. We spend so much time in a frenzy of work, social life and day-to-day issues that we are often left with precious little energy for the most important people in our lives. However, more family time is achievable if you prioritise intelligently. A good way to do this is to organise a schedule and stick to it as closely as possible. Your plan could include a family games night, a sit-down meal together or even a regular stroll around the block, if that’s all you can manage – the important thing is that you make the time count so turn off the computer, put your phone on mute and reconnect with each other.

It’s easY to make a resolutIoN IN tHe Heat of tHe momeNt but stIckINg to It Is aNotHer tHINg altogetHer, especIallY If It’s tHe same oNe You make last Year. but You Do Have tHe abIlItY to cHaNge for gooD, Here’s How... Keep it simple many New Year’s resolutions are destined to fail from the start, simply because they have unrealistic goals, are too complicated or are too unspecific. Do not aim for an overhaul of your entire life, as this is a guaranteed recipe for disappointment and guilt. the best approach is to focus clearly on one or two of your most important goals and break them down into attainable, monthly steps that will lead you to reach your final target. Write it doWn the simple, physical act of writing down your goals in a notebook and seeing them in black and white helps to cement the desire in your brain. remember to add your motivations for wanting this life-change and how you will expect to feel once you’ve achieved it. keep your notebook handy and, in the evening, write down at least one positive thing to do with your resolution that you have experienced during your day. tell someone telling your friends, work colleagues and family about your goal allows them to encourage and support you. If you know someone with a similar resolution, it’s a good idea to ‘buddy up’ so that you can support each other along the way. You could even use social media like facebook to share your progress, hiccups and successes with friends. Celebrate YoUrs sUCCesses every time you reach a milestone, acknowledge your accomplishments in an affirming way. For example, if your resolution is to lose weight, treat yourself to a new top when you drop your first half stone. Do not fall into the trap of jeopardising your goal – it is very easy for a dieter to say, ‘I’ve been really good this week, I deserve a takeaway.’ JUst imagine... spending a few minutes each day imagining yourself in the future when you have achieved your goal is an excellent way of keeping yourself focused on the task in hand. think about how you will be perceived by others, and try to look through the eyes of that future you. what will you see when you are successful? what will you hear? You would be surprised at just how effective this little trick can be when it comes to strengthening your resolve! don’t give Up! You are human which means that a little slip-up is inevitable at some point. If you do have a wobble, all is not lost so don’t use it as an excuse to give up. according to research, just one in 11 people manage to keep their New Year’s resolutions for at least six months, so make sure that one person is you! Draw on your reserves of self-belief and strength, forgive yourself and begin again.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 29


diet plans and ‘quick fix’ schemes, however good they sound. They may help in the short-term but are destined to fail, as you are likely to revert to the habits that made you overweight in the first place. It may sound obvious but the most efficient way to lose weight is to change your eating habits and take regular exercise. Try keeping a food diary; it will put in to perspective just how many calories you are consuming and will make you think twice about munching between meals! Also, be careful with your portion sizes and if you know that you are going out and having a big slap-up dinner that evening, cut back on your calories in the day. When eating out, always opt for dishes that are grilled, baked, steamed or poached rather than fried – check before you order. Select lean meats, fish or vegetable-based dishes and if you are having pasta,

Happy New You!




Look After Yourself Pretty Amazing

It’s New Year and time for an all new and improved you! The weather outside might be miserable, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t look your best, and thanks to Jane Bellis at Bellissimo in north Wales, it could be easier than you think. Jane has been a makeup artist and creative hair stylist for 16 years and a holistic therapist and nail technician for 12 years. ‘When I started, I found that people were going to different places for different treatments, so we aim to offer everything under one roof – there aren’t very many places like us,’ says Jane. ‘Our main ethos is to offer city centre quality in a family setting with tailored individual service.’


Services at the salon include waxing, revitalising and holistic facials, aromatherapy and the Jane Bellis signature makeover, which includes hair styling and full makeup, as well as much more. There’s also plenty of full body treatments to help you relax. Bellissimo also offers a ‘glamour squad’ mobile service for parties, events and festivals, where they offer many of the most popular services. ‘Mobile services were something that was really lacking in our area, and we used to get requests for it all the time,’ says Jane. ‘There’s a minimum of six people, but it’s great fun if you’d rather stay at home with a bottle of wine!’ Find out more about Bellissimo at www. or call 01244 536313. Jane’s personalised service can also include home visits

Turn to page 102 for more on Health & Beauty in this New Year’s issue of Yattar Yattar… and on page 78 we’ve got great winter fashion and accessories on our shopping pages

Your Body Matters

If you’ve determined that a gym is the best option for you, getting the right one is crucial – if you’re going to be visiting multiple times a week, you should at least make sure that it’s somewhere that you’ll feel comfortable. For ladies looking to get in shape, Your Body Matters in Wrexham could be the ideal solution. The unique ladies only fitness centre is designed to meet the needs to real ladies in the real world. Whatever you fitness level or age upon arriving at the centre, their instructors will make sure that you have a fitness regime to suit you. Their 30 minute programmes are currently the most popular memberships and are perfect for those who don’t have the time to commit to hours of working out a day. ‘An Your Body Matters: a gym designed instructor will always be on the circuit to help if you need to help real women it,’ says Alex Maggs, general manager of Your Body Matters. ‘As long as you’re able to climb the stairs to the gym, there is a programme they can set to help you improve your fitness.’


Alex says: ‘After losing 42 inches and nearly 8st in ten months after I first joined as a member, I knew there was something special about the exercise techniques and I wanted to be a part of it. A vacancy became available and in 2008 I began to work for the company. Shortly after, I was promoted to staff trainer. When the business was taken over, I was offered the general manager’s position and I jumped at the chance! I’m now half the person I once was, doing something that I love and proving to members that anything is possible.’ Visit or call 01978 314898.

‘Lipofirm Plus’ at Total Look Beauty Salon

30 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014


Have you committed to losing weight this New Year? If you’d like to get your weight loss off to a good start, Lipofirm Plus could be just the treatment that you’re looking for and it is just one of the treatments offered by Total Look Beauty Salon in Nesscliffe. The exclusive new treatment works using ultrasonic cavitation, which forms bubbles which then implode, damaging fat cells and breaking them down so the body can expel them. The treatment is suitable for both men and women. ‘It is suitable to treat ‘man boobs’ in men and tops of arms for ladies,’ says Jo Suckley, owner of Total Look Beauty Salon. ‘Cellulite, which can be difficult to remove, is not a problem for this treatment. Radiofrequency is also a particularly good facial treatment as it tightens the skin and reduces the signs of aging.’ Total Look Beauty Salon has an ideal location in Nesscliffe. ‘We’re in a peaceful setting,’ says Jo. ‘As we’re out of town, there’s plenty of space for people to park and it’s easy for people to drive here.’ As well a Lipofirm Plus, Total Look Beauty Salon also offer an extensive range of other treatments. Call 01743 741327 or go online and visit to find out more.

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NEW YEAR, NEW YOU do you want to give your skin a treat this New year?

Skincare treatments can make you feel like a new you

Head to page 103 to see our pick of the best hand creams available on the high street and undo the damage done by the long winter months.

KruKira therapies

Based in Oswestry, KruKira provides a full system of KaiAmea complementary therapies, helping you to reach your optimum health and vitality for the New Year. ‘I come from a medical family – all my family are doctors so I have grown up around people who help others,’ says Tom Dewar, owner of KruKira. ‘I chose to work in complementary therapy as I believe that everyone has a natural path. Complementary therapies have been around for thousands of years and known to have been practiced by various ancient civilisations such as the Mayans and Aztecs, Chinese, the Egyptians, the Japanese and the Native American Indians as far back as 10,000 BC. They can help boost the immune system, eliminate toxins, relieve pain, improve circulation, improve sleep patterns, increase energy levels, induce deep relaxation, reduce stress and tension and restore balance to the body’s systems.’

Facing the New Year

If you want to greet the New Year with great skin, then look no further than Boo Skincare in St Asaph. Owner Karen Yates has been working as a beauty therapist for over 20 years and she now offers a wide range of skin rejuvenation treatments. If you’re looking to improve aging, dull or dry skin or want to reduce the appearance of wrinkles, uneven skin tone or acne scarring and blemishes, Boo Skincare offers effective and safe non-surgical treatments that deliver long lasting results. The skin rejuvenation treatments on

‘Complementary therapies have been around for thousands of years’

de-clutter your body

‘Most people nowadays can relate to a computer, so think of the physical body being your computer. The therapies provide the equivalent of a disc clean up and de-fragmentation, removing clutter and realigning our files thus providing energy rebalance and optimizing health and vitality. I’m a certified therapist and practitioner in KaiAmea Crystal Therapy, which was founded in the UK by Kay Challenor. I’m also certified for the NOCN Level 3 (Anatomy and Physiology Professional Standards). I’m fully insured and a full member of The British Complimentary Medicine Association, Association of Energy Therapists and The Complementary Therapists Association. I do home and workplace visits for no extra Give your body the cost (within a help it needs 25-mile radius of Oswestry) if required.’ Find out more about KruKira at www. or contact Tom at 01691 688911.

offer at Boo Skincare work using tissue remodelling. ‘This stimulates the skin from the lower dermis to renew and repair itself to how your skin would have looked 10 years ago,’ explains Karen. ‘This is combined with gentle skin resurfacing treatments to remove the top layer of dead skin cells. This combination therapy obtains excellent results in treating all skin types.’ ‘Firstly, clients have a full consultation including a skin scan, establishing the client’s concerns and required results,’ says Karen. ‘An initial facial is carried out with a further analysis using Chinese face mapping during the facial.’ At Boo Skincare, all treatments are carried out in fully equipped treatment rooms in a grand Georgian listed building. Boo Skincare is located directly off the A55 Rhyl junction with easy client parking at the door. Contact Karen on 01745 797007.

Charity work and volunteering Do something new for 2014!

If you’re looking for something new to do in the New Year, then why not consider volunteering? If you can give a little free time, you can help a local charity continue its good work. Volunteers are vital to the running of many charities, including the National Trust, Shelter Cymru, local food banks and many local animal shelters and charities. Of course, volunteering benefits the charity that you’re working for, but it’s good for you too. It’s a fantastic opportunity to gain experience in a variety of areas and can be a good way

to try something out before embarking on a new career. You can get to see behind the scenes of some very interesting places – by volunteering for the National Trust, for example, you’ll get to see the inner workings of some of Britain’s historic buildings and stately homes. You’ll also get to meet plenty of interesting people and some volunteering programmes even run special social events.

Do you have some spare time and want to get involved with some charity work this New Year? Head to our Volunteering Noticeboard on page 96 January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 33

Love is in the Air!

February 14th is special for most. But where did this collective madness for love begin? Yattar Yattar finds out... party during which they would write their names on pieces of paper before drawing anonymous lots for a ‘sweetheart’. On the feast itself, and for a few days thereafter, the ‘Valentines’ were expected to pretend to be real lovers by flirting with one another, and the men would give the Samuel Pepys: women elaborate gifts, played host to such as embroidered gloves, Valentines Day silk stockings and expensive parties chocolates. As part of the tradition, it was said that the first person seen that day would be one’s destined Valentine; Pepys observed that in 1662 his wife, Elisabeth, refused to move her hand from her eyes, as she was desperate to avoid seeing some workers who were in the house at the time!

‘Guests would write their names on pieces of paper before drawing anonymous lots for a ‘sweetheart’’

Love Letters


earts and chocolates take over supermarket shelves, florists and jewellers gird their collective loins, and fluffy teddies bearing romantic messages find themselves in huge demand, but where did this February madness begin? In the ancient world, the month of February was traditionally a time of year associated with fertility, reproduction and unions. In Athens, Greece, mid January to mid February was taken up with celebrations of the marriage of god Zeus and the goddess, Hera while in ancient Rome, February 13th until the 15th played host to the archaic rite of ‘Lupercalia’, a pastoral festival celebrating purity, health and fertility.

Royal Connection

However, St. Valentine’s Day was not associated with romantic love until the ‘Father of English Literature’, poet, Geoffrey Chaucer, linked the day with the engagement of King Richard II to Anne of Bohemia in the late 1300s, composing a 700-line poem in their honour. The earliest known Valentine’s message was sent in 1477 in the form of a letter penned by a woman named Margery Brews to her lover, John Paston, who she described as ‘my right well beloved Valentine’. However, it wasn’t

until the 1500s that written Valentine messages were exchanged in Europe and England. By the 1600s, Valentine’s Day had entered the popular consciousness Geoffrey Chaucer to such an extent wrote a royal love that even The Bard poem on Feb 14th himself, William Shakespeare, mentioned it in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and during Ophelia’s crazed lament in Hamlet – the latter implying that it was customary for young people to go wooing on the eve of the festival in order to find themselves a spouse: ‘To-morrow is Saint Valentine’s day, All in the morning betime, And I a maid at your window, To be your Valentine’.

Pepys Show!

In the 1660s, the famed London diarist Samuel Pepys recorded his own celebrations of the event. According to his journal he would gather his family, friends and wealthy members of society on Valentine’s Eve for a

34 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

During the mid-18th century, the passing of love-notes became a popular pastime in England – a precursor to the St Valentine’s Day card, as we know it today. Early versions of cards were made of lace, satin and paper and adorned with flowers, ribbons, and images of cupids or birds. By the early 19th century, Valentine’s cards became so popular that factories started to mass-produce them. The introduction of the Universal Penny Post in 1840 made it possible for more people to afford to send items through the post, and in 1936, the Post Office introduced greetings telegrams, replaced in the 1980s by telemessages which also proved popular with lovelorn couples.

Loving Spoonful

Just like Valentine’s Day, Dydd Santes Dwynwen is the time for sweethearts to exchange love tokens, with the traditional Welsh lovespoon being top of the list. Originally carved by young men throughout the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries, these spoons were presented to the object of their affections to represent true love. These keepsakes were fashioned from just one piece of wood, into which lovestruck suitors would painstakingly carve intricate designs during long sea voyages. Certain symbols came to signify different meanings or intentions – a horseshoe for luck, a cross for faith and marriage, hearts for love and keys with which to unlock the heart!

A Tasty Treat

Do you want to give something a bit more special than a supermarket-bought box of chocolates for Valentine’s Day? Check out these offerings from two great local chocolate artisans…

Benjamin Lee Chocolatier and Patissier The range of chocolates you can get from Benjamin Lee are as attractive as they are delicious and the tasty goodies certainly make a great gift. Among the many flavours on offer, you’ll find some more unusual choices, including chocolates containing fresh herbs. As well as chocolates, Bejamin Lee Chocolatier and Patissier can create you the perfect cake for any occasion. Go online and visit or call 01248 712778 to find out more. You can also visit the shop in Menai Bridge to see Benjamin Lee’s creations for yourself.

Cathryn Cariad Chocolates

With a wide selection of flavours, including several that have won accolades at the Great Taste Awards, there’s something to suit everyone available from Cathryn Cariad Chocolates. All of the chocolates are made by hand using the finest Belgian chocolate and ingredients from local Welsh ingredients wherever possible. Particular favourites include the salted caramels (winner of a Gold Great Taste Award and a Silver True Taste of Wales Award) and Welsh honey truffles (winner of a Gold Great Taste Award). Visit or call 01766 762796 to make an order.

Head to page 54 to see just what we thought of some of the chocolates on offer from Benjamin Lee Chocolatier and Patissier

Modern Day

Today, the month of February still plays an important role in many lives. Valentine’s Day, named after St Valentine – a third-century Roman saint born in Terni, Italy – is not only about public displays of affection and swearing undying love. In recent years it has also become big business. In the UK, we fork out more than 20 million pounds on flowers alone, and an additional 400 million pounds on cards, chocolates, jewellery and other trinkets to prove our adoration!

Let’s Talk About Sex!

In recent years, adult shops have shaken their sleazy image and have re-emerged as couple-friendly environments, making sex respectable again. Husband and wife team, David and Yvonne Brown, have run The Fantasy House, in Wrexham, since 2009, and their seductive lingerie, massage oils and saucy accessories have proved immensely popular. David tells us, ‘People are more comfortable today with their sexuality. Television and the internet have made sex far more accessible, and even mainstream magazines can be found advertising adult products without stigma or shame.’ Valentine’s Day is a special date in the calendar for many people, whether they’re celebrating with a long-term love or a new partner. The Fantasy House attracts a lot of regular customers but nearing the most romantic time of the year it sees many new faces too, mostly female. David says, ‘We don’t bite so why not pop your head around the door, even if it is just to say hello. If you take a stroll around the shop you may be pleasantly surprised at what is on offer!’ The Fantasy House is proof that you don’t need to be Christian (or Christine) Grey to thrill your partner this Valentine’s Day! Visit The Fantasy House in Mount Street, or their website at

e ThemDVD Love tle s over the

Don’t wres this Valentine’s Day, we’ve found some wonderful films guaranteed to get you both in the mood for romance… An Officer and a Gentleman (1982) Titanic (1997) Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961) Love Actually (2003)

Shakespeare in Love (1998) Brief Encounter (1945) The Notebook (2004) Lady and the Tramp (1955) Casablanca (1942) The English Patient (1996)

St Dwynen’s Day

In Wales, the most romantic day of the year, St Dwynwen’s Day, is celebrated on 25th January. The woman in question was the beautiful and virtuous daughter of Brychan Brycheiniog – a legendary king in fifth century south Wales. After a disastrous love affair with a Welsh prince named Maelon Dafrodill, a distraught Dwynwen fled into the forest, pleading with God to help her end her misery. Her wish was granted when an angel appeared, giving her a sweet potion that erased Maelon’s feelings for her (turning him into a block of ice), thus releasing her from heartache. The angel then granted Dwynwen three wishes. For her first wish, she asked for Maelon to be thawed. Her second request was for God to grant the hopes and dreams of true lovers, and for her final wish, she asked that she never have the desire to marry so that she could dedicate her life to serving God alone. Legend states that it was the angel who bestowed upon Dwynwen her title of Patron Saint of Love.

‘In the UK, we fork out more than 20 million pounds on flowers alone!’

Did You Know?

Valentine’s cards are not always used for romantic purposes. Police in Liverpool sent some out to wanted criminals, which read, ‘Roses are red, violets are blue, you’ve got a warrant and we’d love to see you’. Who says romance is dead?

Dining Out with someone special

Thinking of heading out for a romantic meal this Valentine’s? We’ve picked out some of our favourite local restaurants for you to consider for your special evening

Gift ideas

Sweet Somethings

Valentine’s Day can be a minefield: too extravagant and you’re accused of having something to hide, too low-key and you’re deemed uncaring! Here are some ideas to make the occasion meaningful and memorable... without breaking the bank! l Invest in a bottle of wine from a significant year, such as your first date, wedding anniversary or the year your first child was born. l Don’t pay an obscene amount of money for a set meal in a crowded restaurant– show that someone special you care by making your own romantic meal at home. (You won’t have to worry about finding a decent parking space either!) l Write a poem – it doesn’t matter if you’re not quite up to Lord Byron’s standards, it’s the thought that counts and, as long as it comes from your heart, your beloved is sure to be delighted! l Create a CD compilation of your favourite love songs or tunes that have special memories for the two of you. l Make your other half breakfast in bed. A tray of their favourite morning foods, orange juice and coffee with a red rose in a vase is a great way of showing your love. You could write a romantic message on the napkin too! l Be original! Instead of buying a box of Milk Tray for your better half, why not make your own chocolate fondue. All you need is a bowl of melted chocolate, cream and flavorings. (We tried Baileys and peanut butter variations.) You can dip anything you like including fruit, biscuits, crackers, marshmallows and, of course, your fingers!

The West Arms

Llanarmon DyffrynCeiriog, Wrexham

01691 600665

Oscar’s Brasserie

at Rossett Hall Hotel Rossett, Wrexham

01244 571000

The Albert Llandudno

01492 877188

The Boat Erbistock

01978 780666

The Grill Room

The Manor Restaurant

01492 564100

01745 832014

at The Quay Hotel and Spa Deganwy

Hawkstone Restaurant

& Terrace Restaurant at Hawkstone Park Hotel, Weston-underRedcastle, Shrewsbury

at The Kinmel Manor Hotel, Abergele

Cambrian Guest House Llangollen

01978 861418

01948 841700

Mellington Hall Country House Hotel Mellington, Churchstoke

01588 620456

Othello’s Restaurant

at Cae Mor Hotel Llandudno

The Brookhouse Mill Denbigh

01745 813377

The Nags Head Garthmyl

01492 878101

01686 207207

The Antelope

The Walls

Rhydymwyn, near Mold.

01352 741247


01691 670970

For the best quality and service around, visit your local independent furniture and carpet store. SALE


Dining & Occasional furniture, mirrors, pictures & lamps

Classic & Contemporary Suites

Large selection of beds, bedsteads and mattresses

Bedroom furniture both freestanding and semi-fitted

LL14 5NA

Fully fitted carpet, vinyl, & Karndean Flooring

01654 781238

Whixall Marina Shropshire Exclusive 5 star luxury boutique accommodation with breathtaking coastal views - Wales at it’s best! Dr Ron Jones

Journey down the Prees branch of the Llangollen Canal and you will find the tranquil haven which is Whixall Marina. Here the boater is well looked after. You will find modern berths with water and electric hook-up, diesel sales, pump-out, elsan disposal, Wi-Fi, a slipway, dry-dock, launderette, toilets, showers, and secure parking for your car. Most importantly you will find peace and quiet.

• Planning approved residential moorings starting from £2850 for boats up to 16 metres in length. Over 16 metres POA. • Grade One leisure moorings for all year round use at £130 per metre per annum • Grade Two leisure moorings from £119 per metre per annum • For further information please call our Central Moorings Team on 0115 9077 433 or e-mail

Glandyfi Castle is a building of romance and imagination, both stately yet intimate, but above all quirky. With its towers and turrets, ramparts and octagonal rooms, there is nothing about the castle which is predictable. It is a true folly - designed to bring pleasure to the eye as well as to the heart.

Where dreams are realised


Room prices range from £90 - £250 for B&B, 3 course dinner is priced at £35.00 pp SPECIAL OFFER

Exclusive use of all 8 bedrooms & public rooms on a B&B basis

£1,100 per night (£68.75 - per person, per night)


Mountain Cottages

Esgair Ebrill Cottages Eglwysbach Conwy LL28 5UL

Red Kites Retreat and Buzzards View Cottages

The Cottage

Fantastic ‘state of the art’ and in a dramatic location

Terms & conditions apply. Prices quoted inclusive of VAT@20%

A pair of superb, luxury barn conversions in an absolutely idyllic rural setting.

Alders la ne


South West facing, in a secluded elevated hillside location, these 400 yrs old barns command breath-taking views of the Carneddau and Snowdonia mountain range. 2 miles from the lovely Welsh village of Eglwysbach (of Bodnant Gardens fame) in the Conwy Valley, North Wales but only 15 mins from A55.

P 1 WC

Whixall Marina

Dry dock


Sleeping 8 and 4 and renovated for maximum comfort and ease of living they include under floor heating, heat recovery systems, wood burners, oak flooring upstairs, natural stone floors downstairs, free sat TV’s and satellite broadband.

Inside, these cottages are full of character and charm with exposed oak beams, high galleried ceilings, oak furniture throughout, spa style bathrooms with freestanding baths and bespoke lighting including exquisite chandeliers. All beds are 1000 pocket sprung with memory foam.

Water & Electricity On Each Berth P Parking


Gas & Coal



Pump Out



1 Reception

Outside enjoy wonderful large decking and lawned areas (gated), which allow for taking in the superb and magical valley views and are fully equipped for enjoying outside life.


If you, your family and/or friends are looking for a truly, beautiful, central location for discovering North Wales, or just want a unique gem of a hideaway, these cottages were designed for you.

Rubbish / Recycling

Walking tracks are in either direction of the front door.

01948 880420

Best of all, these cottages are very reasonably priced

01492 650094 or visit

Yattar ! s y a d i l Ho on the best e k ta s r’ a tt Yattar Ya buy your to r o , y a lid o spots for a h home! own holiday

Plain Sailing in Shropshire Journey down the Prees branch of the Llangollen Canal and you’ll find the tranquil haven of Whixall Marina. With modern berths with water and electric hook up, diesel sales, pump out, Elsan disposal, Wi-Fi, a slipway and dry dock, launderette, toilets, showers and secure parking for your car or motorcycle, it’s certainly all you’ll ever need in a base for exploring the Shropshire canals. But more importantly than all this, at Whixall Marina, you’ll find peace and quiet. The marina is situated in the heart of the Shropshire countryside, considered one of the best places to Did you know? de-stress in the country. The Romans There are over 30,000 discovered that Shropshire was the licensed narrow boats ideal place for some R&R and to this day you will find a warm and on British canals and traditional welcome, pretty much everywhere you go. rivers managed by Elsie Fletcher has been mooring her boat at Whixall British Waterways, and Marina since July 2013. ‘We’re very happy here,’ she 6,500 of these are says. ‘It’s quiet and peaceful, plus everything is close by. We used to cruise continuously and winter in Llangollen homes as we always liked the Llangollen canal. When we decided to look for somewhere to stop, we chose Whixall Marina as it’s got all the facilities we needed. The people are nice as well – we all meet up to go out for a meal over Christmas.’ You can hire a boat from Whixall Marina, but if you’re looking at buying your own narrow boat, then the staff of British Waterways and Marinas Ltd will be happy to advise you on everything from purchase and insurance to getting your boat licence, and of course a mooring for your pride and joy. You can hire a narrow boat from Hire a Canalboat, visit or call 01707 655649. If you would like to find out more about Whixall Marina or are considering buying your own narrow boat, visit


on your doorst

Family Friendly Fun

Lyons Winkups and Primrose Holiday Park is a great option if you’re looking for a family-friendly getaway, whether you want to buy your own holiday home or simply rent one for the week. The park is located opposite on the north Wales coastline in Towyn, so the seashore is just a few minutes’ walk away and opposite the park, you’ll find the Tir Prince raceway and funfair. Both on the park and in the surrounding area there’s plenty for adults and kids to do, so you’ll never find yourself bored! The park itself has more facilities than most. Of course, there are all the usual facilities such as a laundrette and 24-hour security, but there’s also a great entertainment complex and a large soft play area for children. There’s also a new swimming pool that was built just last year as well as an all-weather pitch. As with all Lyons Holiday Parks, owners at Lyons Winkups and Primrose Holiday Park enjoy a 10.5 month season with many of the facilities and entertainment programmes running all year round. Find out more about Lyons Winkups and Primrose Holiday Park at www. lyonswinkupsholidaypark. or call 01745 342234 for holiday home sales or 01745 353936 for holiday rental bookings.

Rhosneigr: something for everyone


During Edwardian times, Rhosneigr, on the west coast of Anglesey, was a highly fashionable tourist destination, attracting families with its wide, sandy beaches and charm. Today, the resort is still thriving and popular with visitors enthralled by its two fantastic beaches and sweeping mountain views. Prevailing westerly winds make Rhosneigr a haven for windsurfers and surfers and its award-winning beaches, ranging from sandy shores to rock pools, all have their own appeal. Nearby, Maelog Lake (Llyn Maelog) – a designated Site of Special Scientific Interest because of its nutrient-rich water and array of flora and fauna – supports many reed bed birds and wildfowl, especially during winter. Golden plover, oystercatchers and coots can be spotted here, as well as greylag geese, wintering bitterns, and the cheerful reed warbler. There are also plenty of great walks in the surrounding countryside, with majestic views. RAF Valley is based nearby and visitors are welcome to look around, as long as they have identification. When in Rhosneigr, you can stay in B&Bs, holiday cottages or opt for camping or caravanning.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 39

39-40 Holidays.indd 39

19/12/2013 19:18

Yattar s! Holiday s

Lloyds Caravans: Essential Advice on Buying a Caravan Martyn Jones, Dire DireCtor for LLoyDs Caravans gives us aDviCe on purChasing your own ‘hoMe froM hoMe’ in beautifuL north waLes anD Cheshire

One of the most important considerations Manchester from 23rd to 26th January, so make sure to pay when buying your own holiday home or us a visit if you’re there. If you’re looking for a new holiday static caravan is placement. North Wales home, don’t forget to come along to our 2014 model launch and Cheshire offer something for everyone, weekend on the 8th and 9th March at Roy Kellett Caravans in with everything from beautiful scenery and Towyn. New for this year are several new and exciting models quaint villages to first-class entertainment including the Swift Bordeaux Escape which, as it includes builtand nightlife. We work with parks on in decking, is a great option for parks that don’t allow you to the beautiful Welsh coast, the scenic build decking. You can visit Lloyds Caravans’ website at www. mountains of Snowdonia and the tranquil or call 01745 832050 or 01745 560224, countryside of Cheshire, so whatever location you prefer, we’ll or come along to the sales grounds in Pensarn or Talacre. be able to help you find somewhere that’s perfect for you. You can also visit our sister company Roy Kellett Caravans in When choosing what holiday park you will call your second Towyn, north Wales or call 01745 350043. We look forward to home, there are several factors to consider. If you want to helping you find your dream second home. spend a lot of time in your holiday home or would like to spend the winter months there, keep an eye out for parks with long seasons – some parks are open nearly all year round, closing for just a few weeks. It’s important to decide whether you want a peaceful getaway or if you’d rather choose a family-friendly park with plenty of entertainment. The facilities available vary from park to park as well – larger Did you know? parks may have restaurants, bars If all the touring and entertainment, which are great caravans in Britain if you want plenty to do, but can were put end to end, make a park busier. they would stretch We will be at the Caravans and from Land’s End to Motorhome Show at Event City in

John O’Groats three times!

Getting away from it all...

if you’re looking for an idyllic, serene location for your holiday home, look no further than Lyons pendyffryn hall Caravan park and Country Club. the woodland caravan park is located in penmaenmawr near Conwy on the edge of snowdonia national park. from the park, you can enjoy stunning views overlooking Anglesey and Puffin Island. the peaceful park is ideal if you’re looking for somewhere quiet to get away from it all, but you’ll also never be short of entertainment. the beach is just a few minutes away, and there’s plenty to do in the local area, as well as a regular entertainment schedule on the park, which includes quiz nights and events throughout the year. if you’d rather take it easy, you could always enjoy a quiet drink in the lounge bar or relax on the balcony while enjoying an unspoilt view of the Menai straits. a separate area of the park for touring caravans and tents has recently been added to Lyons pendyffryn hall Caravan park and Country Club, providing an ideal base for visitors who want to explore north wales. If you’d like to find out more about Lyons Pendyffryn Hall Caravan Park and Country Club, visit or call 01492 623219.


on your doorst

London Calling Immerse yourself in a weekend of adventure travel inspiration at the Adventure Travel Show in London’s Olympia where you can discover off the beaten track travel experiences with the biggest collection of specialist travel operators under one roof. Operators will be on hand to offer advice on everything from walking and trekking, epic journeys, exploratory travels and exclusive expeditions to safaris, overland trips, life-changing volunteering projects and much more. There will also be over 100 talks from explorers, industry experts, guide book writers and expedition leaders who will help you uncover your perfect adventure. The Adventure Travel Show is at Olympia, London on 25th and 26th January. Tickets cost £8 in advance or £10 on the door, under 16s are free. Weekend tickets are also available for £12 in advance or £15 on the door. For full details, talk timetables and to book tickets please visit or call 0871 230 7159.

Machynlleth: capital of Wales

Machynlleth, the market town where Owain Glyndwr held his Parliament in 1404, stands at the head of the Dyfi estuary, in Powys. A popular destination for tourists, this vibrant town is steeped in history, from pre-Roman signposts to the whitewashed building of Royal House on Penrallt Street – the reputed resting place of Henry Tudor on his way to Bosworth Field, and of Charles I on his way to Chester in 1643. Many visitors to this town are attracted by the stunning valley and come to test their stamina – Machynlleth boasts several excellent mountain bike trails. There is also the outdoor market, still going strong after 700 years and ensuring that Wednesdays are the town’s most popular day of the week. In the centre of town stands the prominent Gothic Revival clock, built in 1873. Visitors will be delighted by the broad selection of independent shops, and lovers of the arts are well catered for too – the Tabernacle, a former chapel now converted into a complex for performing arts is also home to the annual Machynlleth Festival, a week-long celebration of music from all over the world.

8th & 9th


INTERESTED IN OWNING A HOLIDAY HOME IN NORTH WALES? Come see what's new for 2014 and join us and the parks of North Wales on Saturday 8th & Sunday 9th March (9am - 5pm) at Roy Kellett Caravans in Towyn, North Wales

    

There will be over 50 new & exclusive 2 & 3 bedroom holiday homes on display Huge savings on selected and ex demonstration models Meet the Manufacturers of ABI, Atlas, BK bluebird, Regal, Swift & Willerby Meet some of the owners of the privately owned Caravan Parks in North Wales Expert advice and guidance from our friendly and knowledgeable team (no hard sales what so ever)


Roy Kellett Caravans, Towyn Rd, Towyn, Conwy, North Wales LL22 9NW 01745 350043 -

es m 5 ho 99 ay 7, lid t £ Ho rt a a


Lyons Pendyffryn Hall Caravan Park & Country Club Pendyffryn Hall is a beautiful woodland caravan park located at the edge of the Snowdonia National Park with stunning panoramic mountain and sea views overlooking Angelsey and Puffin Island. We have recently developed a seperate area of the park for touring caravans and tent camping, this area is an ideal base for your visit to north Wales; just 10 minutes from the soft sandy Penmaenmawr Beach and just down the road from shopping and leisure attractions at Conwy and Llandudno.

Enjoy a range of benefits including:

• 10.5 month season for owners • Serene park to relax and unwind • Within 10 minutes of the soft, sandy beach • Country club bar serving delicious food and drinks daily • Children’s adventure play area and games room

Tel: 01492 623219

Email: - Glanyrafon Road, Dwygyfylchi, Penmaenmawr, LL34 6UF

Yattar ACTIVE! Where can you go this winter to try some of the best outdoor activities? Yattar Yattar goes on a mission to find out… Cheshire Segway

On the Fly!

This March on the 15th marks the beginning of the fishing season at Llyn Brenig in Cerridydrudion, a haven for anyone who enjoys fishing. It’s an opportunity to catch superb overwintered rainbow trout which thrive in the cool pure water of the lake to provide a truly world class fly fishing experience. The fish at Llyn Brenig have gained a reputation for being fierce fighters! Bank permits are available, but the best way to fish Brenig is to hire one of the boats, and explore some of the sheltered bays where the best fish congregate. If you’ve never tried fishing before, now’s your chance to get hooked! Throughout the 2014 season, there will be fly fishing taster days open to all ages – perfect if you want to give it a go. As well as fishing, Llyn Brenig has plenty to offer keen cyclists, with miles of trails to explore and a cycle hire facility on site. Walkers can also explore Llyn Brenig and, if they’re lucky, catch a glimpse of some of the rare wildlife that calls the site home. Llyn Brenig is in Cerrigydrudion, Conwy. The visitor centre and café are open daily 8am to 4pm. Find out more on the website or call 01490 420463.

Park and Rides

From their base in Blakemere Craft Centre in Sandiway, Northwich, Cheshire Segway can give you the chance to explore 15 acres of woodlands in a unique way. There are a variety of experiences for you to have a go at, from a 10-minute taster session to an hour-long woodland glide experience. Cheshire Segway can also accommodate parties of both adults and children. When you go for a session at Cheshire Segway, you’ll start off with a quick lesson on how to be safe and how to handle your Segway and then you’ll be off for a packed experience of pure fun as you whizz around the Cheshire countryside. There are very few restrictions for riding a Segway – as long as you weigh less than 18.5 stone, can stand for the length of the tour and are comfortable leaning slightly from side to side, you can have a go. For children, a minimum age of 10 and weight of seven stone applies. Fancy a go at riding a Segway? Contact Cheshire Segway on 01606 888090 or visit

Boardroom Climbing indoor climbing wall offers people at all levels of experience and skill the chance to try their hand at climbing in a facility that’s unique to the area. ‘We decided to open an indoor climbing wall in Queensferry’ says David Thomas, director of the Boardroom Climbing. ‘because there are no other climbing walls in the area – the nearest comparable climbing walls are Liverpool, Warrington, Manchester and Caernarfon. Secondly, there is already a strong climbing community within the area; all have had to travel to these other climbing walls. The local climbing community can now encompass new climbers wishing to try the sport.’ ‘We offer a wide range of courses for beginners, such as taster sessions. There are very few limitations to who can try the sport. Believe it or not, climbing is a lot more about balance and using your legs,’ says David. ‘This is why women are on a par with men within the sport. Balance and good footwork are the keys to success. You can expect exhilarating challenges and a great sense of achievement. It’s An hour of energetic also a very social sport and climbers are a friendly, helpful bunch who are always willing to help and offer advice.’ Visit www. dancing burns an or call 01244 537476 to find out more.

You’ll find plenty of things to experience at Glasfryn Activity Parc this New Year. You can visit the ten pin bowling alley or take the kids to enjoy the soft play area (that’s also a great venue for kids’ parties), but it’s if you venture outside that you’ll find the real fun. Activities that you can take part in at include go-karting, quad biking, coarse fishing, kayaking and even archery. The latest addition to Glasfryn Activity Parc is a brand new all-year ice skating rink. The rink is made of a special synthetic material which provides a real skating experience in almost any weather! Glasfryn Activity Parc is located in Pwllheli, so is in the ideal location if you want to enjoy a great day out in north Wales. If you want to make your visit last longer, you can bring your tent! Fans of the outdoors can take advantage of the campsite or, if you’re fond of your creature comforts, you can book one of the five charming farmhouse self-catering cottages. Find out more about everything at Glasfryn Activity Parc at or call 01766 810000.

42 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Up the Wall!

Did You Know?

incredible 500-700 calories. Get your dancing shoes on!

Dancing shoes

Have you ever wanted to learn how to dance? Then make it your New Year’s resolution to lose your two left feet and put on your dancing shoes for classes at the Academy Dance Hall in Buckley. Whether you want to try street dancing, ballroom or a spicy Latin number, you’ll find a class to suit you, no matter what your dancing experience. The Academy was originally built in the 1920s – some may remember it as the Albert Hall which was ‘the place to go’ for dancing in its heyday. The hall’s main ballroom still features the original 1920s sprung maple dance floor, which of course makes for a fantastic place to get your groove on! To learn more about the classes and events call 07812 369702.

a new dedicated indoor climbing venue is now open near chester featuring the first psicobloc wall in the uk taster sessions, private instruction, group bookings, nicas, kids clubs & kids birthday parties call or book on-line


Enjoy fly fishing, cycling and walking at beautiful Brenig Visitor Centre open every day from 8am until 4pm CafĂŠ open from 10am to 3pm during winter and from 8am to 4pm from 1st March 01490 420463 Llyn Brenig Visitor Centre Llyn Brenig, Cerrigydrudion, Conwy, Wales LL21 9TT

Bodidris Hall

Bodidris is a truly unique country house hotel and an historically important building situated in llandegla, Wrexham. There are 9 en suite bedrooms within Bodidris, there is also a breakfast room, bar and dining room. You could enjoy Bodidris’ relaxing atmosphere whilst dining or enjoying a Welsh afternoon tea in front of a roaring log fire during the day, or by feasting on the finest locally sourced food, at the bar or in the dining room in the evenings. l For all of January, Bodidris Hall are running a special offer just for Yattar Yattar readers. You can enjoy a two-course meal at Bodidris Hall for just £17.95 per person – just mention Yattar Yattar when booking your table. 01978 790434

GlandYfi CasTlE

Glandyfi Castle offers 5 star luxury accommodation in a beautifully restored regency Gothic building overlooking the dovey estuary. Situated five miles from Machynlleth on the A487, the castle enjoys some of the most spectacular views in the U.k. This tastefully restored listed building retains many of its original features, alongside modern, designer bathrooms, luxurious bedrooms and Wi-fi throughout. l Room prices range from £90 to £250 for bed and breakfast and dinner is priced at £35 per person for three courses. Exclusive booking of the whole Castle is just £1,100 per night (which works out at just over £68.75 per person based upon 16 people), great for weddings and civil ceremonies which can take place either inside the building or in the garden with its magnificent views.’ 01654 781238

MaEnan aBBEY

standing majestically in the heart of the beautiful Conwy Valley, with the foothills of the snowdonia range offering a dramatic backdrop, Maenan abbey Country House Hotel and restaurant promises to be a luxurious and comfortable place to stay. Explorers will be in their element with the many local attractions and beautiful surroundings, and after a long day exploring, you can unwind in the friendly bar or relaxing lounge. l Are you looking for a wonderful wintery getaway? Throughout January, Mellington Hall is offering a two-night stay for two people for just £199. The price includes bed, breakfast and afternoon tea and spiced mulled wine – the perfect way to warm up on a cold winter’s day. 01492 660247

CaE Mor HoTEl

Cae Mor Hotel is located in the town of llandudno, opposite the promenade and next to Venue Cymru, so is ideally located for anyone attending any conferences or shows, or for anyone who wants to explore the town or north Wales as a whole. The hotel has 23 en-suite bedrooms, some of which boast sea views. l Enjoy a two-night winter break at Cae Mor Hotel for just £94.75 per person. You’ll get dinner, bed and breakfast on the first night and bed and breakfast on the second, plus a bottle of Prosecco in your room on arrival. Offer is based on a minimum two-night stay, excludes Valentines and is subject to availability. 01492 878101

HaWksTonE park HoTEl

Nestled among 400 acres of Shropshire countryside, Hawkstone park is a great destination for golfing breaks, country walks and visits to the local town of shrewsbury where you can discover attractions such as shrewsbury Castle and ironbridge. The hotel has 66 homely, en-suite bedrooms and a historic woodland with caves and crags and is where The Chronicles of Narnia was filmed in 1988. It is also a popular location for conferences and weddings with a 200 seating suite and another with a private bar and golf course views. l Until the end of February, you can enjoy a winter break at Hawkstone Park Hotel from just £36 per person per night. What’s more, if you decide to stay in and dine at the hotel, you’ll get a bottle of wine to go with your meal completely free! 01948 841700

MEllinGTon Hall

Set in 280 acres of mature gardens and tranquil parkland, Mellington Hall Country House Hotel certainly has a picturesque location. The 19th century Victorian gothic mansion has a long and fascinating history stretching back over 150 years and still retains many of its original features. While at the hotel, you can also take the chance to enjoy some fine cuisine in Mellington Hall’s restaurants or soak up the atmosphere in the bar. l Are you looking for a wonderful wintery getaway? Throughout January, Mellington Hall is offering a two-night stay for two people for just £199. The price includes bed, breakfast and afternoon tea and spiced mulled wine – the perfect way to warm up on a cold winter’s day. 01588 620456

44 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

CardEn park

set in a 1000 acre estate in the Cheshire countryside, Carden park is a great location for a relaxing and luxurious break. Golf fans are sure to enjoy the hotel’s two stunning championship golf courses, while fans of sitting back and relaxing will be more than happy with the spa, which won the Good spa award’s north West Best spa award 2012. l Want to get away from it all? Carden Park is offering winter escapes from £79 per room per night. A three-night minibreak costs from £79 per night for two people and includes full English breakfast and use of the leisure facilities. Quote ‘MB3’ when booking. Visit the website for more offers, including golf and spa breaks. 01829 731000

kinMEl Manor

The kinmel Manor Hotel has recently gone through a major refurbishment and all of their staff are proud to offer you a warm welcome to the north Wales coast. set in the beautiful Welsh countryside and a short five minute stroll from the market town of abergele, it really is the perfect location for exploring the scenic coast and country. l As well as great accommodation, Kinmel Manor also offers fantastic dining in the Manor Restaurant, which is part of the original manor house. You can pick from the extensive á la carte menu while relaxing with a glass of wine in the luxurious atmosphere. To add to the ambience and atmosphere a traditional log fire will be lit throughout the colder evenings of the year. 01745 832014

nanTEos Mansion

if you’re looking for a luxurious getaway, look no further than nanteos Mansion. The Grade i listed former country house has been lovingly restored and transformed into a luxury hotel set in 50 acres of grounds. The hotel’s nightingale restaurant is a must-visit for food lovers, with a fantastic menu put together by chef patron nigel Jones. l Nanteos Mansion are offering a special discount exclusively for Yattar Yattar readers. If you’re in need of a short break, you can book an overnight stay and enjoy a 15% discount – just mention Yattar Yattar when booking. 01970 600522

Yattar Escapes We’ve gathered together some of the best new offers from hotels across the area. Perfect if you’re in need of a getaway!

RossEtt Hall HotEl

surrounded by the north Wales countryside and just a short drive from the historic city of Chester, Rossett Hall offers comfortable rooms and a relaxing atmosphere in tranquil surroundings. It has a grade 2, mid-18th century building at its core and is a forty-five minute drive away from the peaks of snowdonia. the restaurant is open daily from 7am to 9am and is ideal for meeting friends for a light lunch. the hotel also offers facilities for business meetings and conferences. l Enjoy a romantic getaway with someone special this Valentine’s Day at Rossett Hall Hotel. Stay for one or two nights from 14th February and get a double room, half bottle of bubbly awaiting your arrival, flowers and chocolates, entertainment with dinner and breakfast the following morning from just £79 per person., or call 01244 571000

st GEoRGEs HotEl, llandudno

Experience llandudno and all that the north Wales coast has to offer when you stay in the st Georges Hotel. Visit Wales Gold award winning st Georges Hotel in llandudno, cleverly combines traditional Victorian elegance and its stunning setting with the comfort of a luxurious 4 star Hotel. Every detail of the hotel is designed to offer a relaxed, intimate atmosphere, calm moods and a fresh, professional approach to service. l Do you want a chance to relax this New Year? Take advantage of the arrive and revive package, which includes a two-course dinner in the Terrace Restaurant, overnight accommodation and a full Welsh breakfast from just £70 per person, per night. Prices are based on two people sharing a classic double or twin room for a minimum two-night stay. Offer excludes Easter and is subject to availability. 0808 168 6030

RutHIn CastlE

set within acres of woods and parkland, Ruthin Castle Hotel is a magical Welsh hotel with royal heritage stretching back over 700 years. Guests can choose to stay in one of seven unusually themed and extravagantly furnished ‘Royal salons’ and ‘sovereign suites’ or in the recently refurbished, 4-star ‘Regal’ and ‘noble’ rooms. l Do you need a break from it all after a hectic festive season? If you book a room for January, you’ll receive a glass of Prosecco each on your arrival. If you want a midweek break, then you can take advantage of the Majestic Midweek Bliss package, which includes a complimentary dinner for two in Ruthin Castle’s award-winning restaurant, from just £149 per room, per night. 01824 702664

tHE aRBouR HotEl

during a stay in the arbour Hotel in Barmouth you can enjoy the sea front views and, of course, you’re just a short way away from the beach. the arbour Hotel also has an indoor pool, restaurant and bar for you to use while you stay with them. l Looking forward to an Easter break? If you want to spend Easter by the seaside, then make sure you book for the Arbour Hotel’s Easter special. You can stay for any three nights for just £105 per person including breakfast. Contact the hotel for further details and availability. 01341 280459

sEIont ManoR HotEl

seiont Manor is situated in 150 acres of grounds and boasts three aa red stars and an aa two rosette restaurant. Recently a whole new dining experience has arrived at seiont Manor Hotel – sunday brunch at llwyn y Brain, so you can join them for a lazy day and to enjoy food from a great menu, including brunch classics and the seiont signature grills. l Until the end of March, you can get three nights for the price of two in exclusive and four poster rooms and junior suites at Seiont Manor Hotel. Prices start at £260 for rooms and £300 for suites including a traditional breakfast for each morning. 0845 072 7550

tHE QuaY HotEl and sPa

the Quay Hotel is a sophisticated hotel on the Conwy Estuary, just a short distance from the historic town of Conwy and is easily accessed from the north West. With its 74 extravagantly designed rooms, including suites and penthouses, the hotel also boasts interactive televisions, a spa and fantastic views of the Conwy Estuary and deganwy Quay Marina. l Banish the winter blues with a two-night stay at the Quay Hotel and Spa. This special package includes a daily full Welsh breakfast, a four-course evening meal plus coffee on one evening, a two-course lunch and full use of the hotel’s leisure facilities, all for just £130 per person. Book online using promotional code ‘LOSEBLUES’. or call 01492 564100

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 45


In store and online butchers

Certificate of excellence May 2011


e are a popular, family run, pub and restaurant based in the heart of Llandudno, in fabulous North Wales... Real Ales • Home-made food • World Cuisine • Fine wines • Quiz night • Cask Beers • Cater for groups and large parties • Functions •





FREE delivery on orders over £75 w.


Book early to avoid disappointment.

Web e Laun sit

The Albert, 56 Madoc Street, Llandudno, Conwy LL30 2TW Telephone: 01492 877188 email: Twitter: @albertllandudno Facebook: Search ‘The Albert’ Web:

Bwydlyn Cyf. | Gaol Street | Pwllheli | Gwynedd | LL53 5DB 01758 701 854 | |

Two chances for Love at Rossett Hall thisValentines... Friday 14th February

Saturday 15th February

with Enrique Iglesias

with Bublé & the Crooners

A Spanish Night of love

A Valentines Evening

Sangria on arrival, a delicious three course Spanish menu in Oscars Brasserie, with our amazing Enrique tribute to romance the night away

Join us in our new Allington Suite with a delicious Valentines menu, dancing to our resident DJ and our amazing Tribute act to Micheal Bublé and the Crooners

Only £28.95 per person

Only £26.95 per person

Stay the Night for £35 per person including Breakfast

...Only at your Rossett Hall

Chester Road, Rossett, Wrexham LL12 0DE

For bookings call 01244 571000 or Email


Murder Mystery at Mellington Hall We head to a stately hall for a evening of tuxedos and ball gowns, great company, fine dining – and bloody murder! By Emily Bromage


urning into the driveway of Mellington Hall at dusk, it is difficult to imagine a place more secluded and peaceful than this. Warm light glows from windows within the grand Victorian façade as you make your way across the impressive stone porch to the oak door entrance. We are greeted by Kim, the event organiser, who shows us through what would normally be the reception, but for the purposes of the Murder Mystery night has been transformed into a glamorous, intimate dining area. Heading through the doorway we are overtaken by a loud and unruly gang of five. It quickly becomes apparent that these are no dinner guests, these are the actors, the life and soul of the grizzly game of whodunnit that is set to unfold around us.

a family affair Taking our seats at the tables, my friend and I find ourselves next to the mayor of a nearby town, who having been to last year’s murder mystery event, tells us proudly that she guessed it correctly and that we’re in for a treat. Amidst the chatter of the 80 plus diners, we get to know the five people that are to be our team mates for the evening, and before long the waiters and waitresses are circling round us with plates of fishcakes and duck pâté, and bowls of creamy leek and potato

soup. But we are not spared for long, soon enough the troublesome five seated in the centre of the room stand to address us. It is Charles Worthington Bell that speaks first, introducing himself as half owner of the family department store, followed by his sister Annabelle who owns the other half, and their colleagues Eloise, Tom, and Del Ponte, a man with a somewhat shady Italian accent. Charles, with his oppressive nature and loud mouth, is quickly singled as the one who’ll be biting the dust! After our main course of chicken and swede mash, and, for my friend, pork and black pudding, Charles sweeps back in the room, only this time dressed as Santa Claus! Delivering envelopes to each of his employees, we anticipate trouble… Each of the envelopes contains something questionable about their past that Charles had uncovered, making sure that they all have motives for Charles’ murder. As for Annabelle, you only had to listen to her brother scolding her throughout the night for looking like a ‘domino’ in her black and white polkadot dress to suspect she may snap. Charles leaves, and we all begin chatting excitedly, predicting how the deed will be done. In the lounge with the dagger? Or in the ballroom with the candlestick, perhaps?

‘A grizzly game of whodunnit is set to unfold around us’

to ask each of the four suspects. Each one stands up and take their turn in the spotlight, and our table listens closely for any slip-ups or extra clues.

Cross-examined Closely The questioning is light-hearted, each actor keeping to character and ad-libbing their answers to perfection. The interplay with the audience is really good fun too as everyone joins in the game. When Del Ponte takes the stage, there are many giggles as he slips into a thick London accent and we find out he wasn’t Italian at all – if only the question of ‘can you sing us the Italian national anthem please?’ had come up sooner! We all deliver our verdict, and surprise, surprise out of everyone there it was only the table of local policeman who guessed correctly! It was a wonderful evening of entertainment, beautiful food and festive fun… and murder! y a three-course meal and live murder mystery entertainment costs just £28.50 per person. if you want to experience some live entertainment at mellington hall, then make sure you grab your tickets to Fawlty Towers – The Dinner Show on 1st march for £32.50 per person.

death by dessert Dessert of Bailey’s cheesecake and sticky toffee pudding accompanies the entrance of the detective, who announces to all the demise of Charles Worthington Bell, pushed down the fireescape after being hit with a stone statuette, and so we begin our investigation; each table is to write down questions

Book your tickets by calling 01588 620456 or find out more at

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 47


Chester Oddfellows

We head into Chester for lunch at Oddfellows Hotel on Bridge street, home of The Garden Restaurant by Simon Radley bed. But it is in the common areas, the restaurant, bar and reception, where the designer’s imagination and sense of fun really comes into its own, with ancient typewriters climbing a wall, huge transfers of foxes and birds, trees growing out of tables, artificial turf and an outdoor potting shed bar.

StArred Chef

In the bar, huge bird transfers adorn the walls


ddfellows Hotel in Chester, on Bridge Street, is a relatively new venture by the Chester Grosvenor, having been extended and refurbished for the launch in 2012. It’s a successful attempt to creat a modern hotel and restuarant, while retaining the original character of the Georgian club; the ‘Oddfellows’ were one of England’s earliest ‘friendly societies’, who played a role in charity and social support.

design led Oddfellows is also what is often referred to as a boutique hotel, or design hotel – the interior designers have really gone to town with bold, quirky and humorous ideas throughout. The rooms are themed to represent the lives of famous Cestrians – illustrator Randolph Caldecott, architect John Douglas and cinematographer Peter Newbrook – and the duplex rooms feature free-standing baths next to the double

The lunch we shared with Katie, who works with both the Grosvenor and Oddfellows, was a delight. If you want a really nice lunch with top quality dishes, then you must try The Garden by Simon Radley. Simon, head chef at the Grosvenor who oversees The Garden at Oddfellows, is a holder of a Michelin star for 24 consecutive years. Katie says: ‘There are only four other English restaurants that have met Michelin’s standards for such a long period of time.’ The swordfish was delicious, served with charred, roasted root vegetables, lemon and mango chutney, and the lamb even better. This is not pretentious, ‘flash cookery’ to justify £18 entrées – these dishes were all well balanced and executed beautifully with exacting attention to detail. And from what Katie tells us about Simon’s work ethic, you would expect nothing less. In the evening, the bar fills up with residents and locals alike and is quite busy. Retiring early for a good night’s sleep, breakfast was a perfect naughty treat of black pudding, poached eggs and bacon, washed down with rich coffee and topped off with marmalade on toast. Perfect. y

‘The interior designers have really gone to town’

The garden restaurant at Oddfellows is overseen by the Grosvenor’s Simon radley

48 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

A duplex room, with free standing bath next to the bed

History of Oddfellows

The hotel was originally a town house built in 1676 for lady Mary Calverley. Because this new building led to the loss of a portion of the Rows she was fined £20 by the City Assembly (about £3,000 today – seem quite reasonable!). lady Calverley’s house was the first building in central Chester to be designed in such a ‘classical style’, which became widely used in the georgian period. since then the building has been used for various purposes, including a school, a club, offices, and shops.

OddfellOwS 20 Lower Bridge Street, Chester, Cheshire, CH1 1RS Tel: 01244 895700

e w nt r N me de ge Un na a


An independent family business trading since 1878. We offer a unique shopping experience and pride ourselves on our team of friendly staff.

New Butchers & Deli Now Open!

Seasonal Foods

A truly unique country house hotel in Llandegla. There are 9 en suite bedrooms within Bodidris, there is also a breakfast room, bar and dining room.You could enjoy Bodidris’ relaxing atmosphere whilst dining or enjoying Welsh afternoon tea infront of a roaring log re during the day, or by feasting on the nest locally sourced food, at the bar or in the dining room in the evenings.


Farm Shop

01978 790434

Bodidris, Llandegla, Wrexham, LL11 3AL

** ** Special Offer for Yattar Yattar Readers! Enjoy a two-course meal at Bodidris Hall for just

£17.95 throughout January. Just mention Yattar Yattar when booking

Garden Centre – 140 Cover Restaurant – Seasonal Pick Your Own – Clothing – Pet Food & Accessories


Cae Mor Hotel and Othello’s Restaurant

The Cae Mor Hotel Llandudno offers quality fine dining and luxurious accommodation for all of our guests.

Whether you crave the sumptuous luxury of a hotel, or the special attention to detail of a bed and breakfast; as one of the top Llandudno hotels we at Cae Mor offer both, and much more.


A two-night break for two –

just £94.75 per person!

Includes dinner, bed and breakfast one night and bed and breakfast the second, plus a bottle of Prosecco in your room on arrival. Rate based on standard room and excludes Valentines, valid Sunday to Thursday.


he Bear is a classic country Inn with rooms, nestled in the historic Shropshire countryside.

Our aim is to offer an unbeatable combination of amazing home-made fresh food, cracking hand-pulled cask ales, wine that compliments the dishes perfectly and exceptional, friendly service. As well as being a traditional pub boasting four well-chosen cask ales, we serve exceptional food with a seasonal menu that sources all its produce locally and everything is home-made. The building is renowned for its many enchanting secrets such as the former Bear Pit located under Wilfred’s retreat in the pub, and has many secret passageways leading to the village and Hodnet Hall. There is also seven newly re-furbished bedrooms, two annexes next door and a strikingly grand 16th century hall located on the second floor, suitable for any occasion.

01630 685214

The Bear at Hodnet, Market Drayton, Shropshire TF9 3NH


The Bear at Hodnet

Yattar Yattar heads to Hodnet near the town of Market Drayton to meet the team who have brought a great Bear out of hibernation…


n just over a year’s time, co-owners Greg Williams and Alyn Jones have managed to transform The Bear at Hodnet into a fantastically relaxed and friendly inn where the food served is well above standard pub fare, as we were about to discover…

The Bear’s Journey

You wouldn’t believe that Greg has only been behind the bar at The Bear for a year. He’s a welcoming host and the pub atmosphere this cold wintery evening is a jovial one as regulars sit and chat in the bar area. The interior is cosy and inviting, with a casual mix-and-match of pine and oak furniture, comfy chairs and roaring fires. It’s difficult to believe Greg when he tell us of dartboards, blocked up bookcases, and a pool room. ‘In just over a month the inn was transformed to what you see today, rectoryred walls, exposed bookshelves, hand-chosen pictures, restored wooden beams and a log-fire added to every room!’ Each touch adds to the relaxed ambience. So why The Bear? ‘After working in a renowned Cheshire pub I felt I had outgrown my role,’ says Greg. ‘It was the history of The Bear which captured me, there is something magical that I couldn’t resist!’ It certainly seems things have worked out as even on a Monday evening the kitchen was busy. ‘When we first opened in February 2012 we were only doing about eight to ten covers, now we’re doubling that and even have functions booked in for up to a hundred people in what used to be the medieval banquet room,’ explains Greg. Upstairs the newly refurbished function room boasts high ceilings, a large fire, heavy drapes and elegant chandeliers – a hidden surprise on our tour.

food philosophy is based on using the best ingredients, he places great importance on the ability to change our menu daily if needs be, to ensure that we are serving the best produce available to us on any one day.’ Following Greg’s advice my dining partner and I opt for the more unusual dishes available on the menu, starting with a game terrine with spiced fig and apple relish and also the cured salmon ballotine. The pressed terrine looked spectacular with the mixed layers of rabbit, pheasant and black pudding and tasted delicious! I’m told the salmon was also perfect. For the main, I enjoyed the braised feather of beef with parmesan mash and stout gravy, complete with the biggest dumpling I’ve ever seen sat on top of the tender beef. The dish was truly wholesome and well-cooked. I enjoyed the little twists which made the dish modern – parmesan mash and the addition of smoked bacon pieces to the gravy. My dining partner chose the pan fried sea bass with pea and chervil risotto which was a delight with crispy skin, yet soft and succulent fish. The accompanying risotto had a rich, buttery sauce with the taste of saffron coming through strongly. Replete as we were, somehow we both managed dessert; hazelnut meringue and Belton’s cheese platter were both a lovely final course, and the sage cheese was a delight. The menu runs all day and allows each individual diner to pick and choose – you could pop in for a sandwich, or enjoy a three-course formal meal.

‘The pan fried sea bass and feather of beef were a delight’

Food For ThoughT

‘Here at The Bear, the focus is food’ Greg explains. ‘Head chef Alyn’s

ouTsTanding Food

The Bear was a great choice to dine at on a wintery evening as we were served sat next to a roaring fire. In the summer it will no doubt be a lovely place to enjoy a drink in the beer garden. We hope that Greg and his team continue to grow the business and achieve their plans. Whether you’re popping in for a pint of real ale, looking to celebrate that special occasion, or staying the night, The Bear can cater to all! y Call The Bear on 01630 685214 or visit to find out more.

The Bill

Presse d rab terrine w bit, pheasant an d black p ith a spic u dding e d fig an Cure d sa d apple lmon ball relish otine w it lime pickl h salsa ve e d fenne rdi an d a l sala d Pan frie d sea ba ss w ith p mussels ea an d ch an d a sa ervil riso ffron ve lo uté tto, Braise d feather of beef smoke d w ith parm bacon, th esan ma yme du m sh, Belton’s ch pling an d gravy eese tast chutney, er plate w ith spic grapes a e d fruit n d cracke Hazelnut rs m vanilla cr eringue w ith mu lle d fruit eam s an d sp ice Three co urses £19 .95 per (fro m th person e Christ mas set menu )

The Bear’s Tale

The Bear at hodnet is said to date back at least 500 years and still contains passages that were built to hide monks as they came from church, which were also used to transport ale underground and avoid taxes. The original 16th century bear pit is believed to have been in what is now the car park. The owner allegedly kept the bears in a pit below the bar and it is said that regulars fed the bears food and drink – some of the bears are said to have died from alcohol poisoning!

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 51


A Fairytale Wedding in a Magical Land

LEWIS FARM SHOP HAVE A GREAT WAY OF SAVING MONEY ON MEAT Lewis’s Farm Shop in Eyton are bringing out a new treat for meat lovers – for £249 you could have enough beef to last you up to six months! The new package will be available from January onwards and includes steaks, roasting joints, stewing steak and mince. ‘It’s top quality meat at an affordable price,’ says Mark Lewis. ‘You end up getting cuts of meat for the price of stewing steak.’ The bulk order works out far cheaper than buying the cuts of meat individually and you can be confident that the meat you’ll receive is of high quality. ‘All the meat comes from our own cattle raised on our family farm, so it’s completely traceable,’ says Mark. ‘We hang all our beef for 21 to 28 days, so it’s fully matured by the time it gets to the customer. We can also offer free local delivery – it’s delicious local meat for local people.’ You can visit Lewis’s Farm Shop in Eyton near Wrexham from 10am to 5pm Tuesday to Saturday and from 10am to 4pm on Sundays. Take a look at their website at for more information, or call 01978 780852.

f d

tasters SOmE ScrUmPTIOUS TrEaTS FOr yOU In ThE nEw yEar!

Seasonal Foods To see the magic for yourself call Joanna Lee on: 01948 841769 or email:

WHAT SHOULD YOU LOOK FOR IN THE SUPERMARKETS AND FARM SHOPS? All vegetables have a prime time when they’re at their seasonal best and now is the perfect time to ensure our healthy resolutions get off to a perfect start. Although the cold weather is not always particularly comfortable, hearty stews made with a selection of root vegetables go a long way to making it that much more bearable! Kale, a member of the cabbage family, is a hardy winter green, packed with iron, vitamins and antioxidants and is abundant at this time of year. Sometimes known as ‘the queen of greens’, kale is held in high esteem amongst foodies due to its versatility, great taste and nutritional profile. Butternut squash is a seasonal favourite that brings a welcome splash of colour to winter recipes. With a sweet, nutty taste similar to pumpkin, the squash can be eaten raw, roasted, puréed, mashed or even used as stuffing for bread and cakes. Besides the orange flesh, the seeds are also edible and taste great roasted, ground into paste or pressed for vegetable oil. The humble turnip, a great source of vitamin C, has quite a strong flavour so is not usually eaten alone, but added to a dish. When shopping for turnips, look out for small specimens as they are usually younger, tastier and more tender. You can also use their peppery greens in soups and stews. A tasty way to cook root vegetables is to peel them and cut them into chunks. Toss them with a little olive oil and a large pinch of salt and roast them at a medium high heat for around 40–45 minutes until they are tender and golden brown. Delicious!


Guilty Pleasures

OUR FAVOURITE LOCAL FARM SHOPS Bellis Brothers in Holt Village near We all have our guilty pleasures, those things Wrexham are perhaps best known for that you really shouldn’t enjoy, but still do. We their ‘pick your own’ in the summer, but picked out some of our favourites to tempt you there’s plenty more there for all seasons. away from your New Year’s diet! This Christmas has been a busy one for Bellis Brothers, particularly for the newly Pies, Pies, Pies opened butchery, Jamie Ward. ‘We’ve had a very good start,’ says We all know that too much buttery pastry can’t David Ward from Jamie Ward’s Traditional Family Butchery. ‘The butchers and be good for us, but very few of us care when faced deli counter officially opened on 10th December and we’ve been selling our with a tempting pie. Whether your treat of choice own pies, cooked meats, black puddings and even ready meals. We had a lot is savoury (steak and kidney or meat and potato over Christmas for our free range and barn reared British turkeys, geese, hams are two of our favourites) or sweet (what can beat and even ribs of beef as well as sides, such as pigs in blankets.’ apple or pumpkin?) there’s something about pies Now that things are quietening down after the festive season, the team at that so many of us find irresistible. the butchery are keen to try new things. ‘There are loads of new things that we want to do in the New Year,’ says David. Peanut Butter and ChoColate ‘Our ready meals have been particularly sandwiCh popular and we want to experiment with new types. Our flavoured chickens American inventor Harry Burnette Reese was have also been popular and we definitely onto something when he created want to try some new flavours peanut butter cups and these days you Did you know? as well as try some new kinds can find plenty of goodies that combine Henry VIII was of pies and our own paté.’ peanut butter and chocolate. Our the first English King You can contact Jamie favourite naughty treat that you can Ward’s Traditional Family to enjoy turkey, make at home is a sandwich made with Butchery by calling 01829 although it was peanut butter and chocolate spread (or 272030. The butchery is open Edward VII who made Nutella) – delicious! from 9am to 6pm Monday it fashionable at to Saturday and from 11am Christmas Cheese and BisCuits to 5pm on Sundays. For more From creamy Brie to sharp cheddar, information about the butchery or there’s plenty to love Bellis Brothers, visit


There’s nothing better on a cold day than a good pie, and thanks to the Ludlow Food Centre, we had just that. We were lucky enough to be able to try a selection of the readymade pies on offer at the food centre. Preparing the pies was easy enough – just pop them in the oven for 25 minutes until hot all the way through. This gave them a crispy pastry topping. The chicken, leek and tarragon pie was delicious, with large chunks of chicken and plenty of cream and tarragon sauce. Both the steak and kidney and the steak and ale pies had large, lean chunks of beef that were deliciously tender. If you like kidneys, then the steak and kidney pie will certainly be your favourite, with plenty of kidneys to be found in the pie, rather than just the odd piece! If you want to get your hands on a delicious pie from the Ludlow Food Centre, you can order over the phone or pick one up from the food centre for just £3.99. The Ludlow Food Centre is open seven days a week, for more information, visit www.ludlowfoodcentre. or call 01584 856000.

Wonderful Wine

The Albert in Llandudno has long had a great reputation among both locals and visitors for its wide selection of real ales and lagers as well as its tempting dining options, but now the pub has another reason to be a favourite – a brand new wine list. The new selection has been put together with the help of James Fearon Wines in Holyhead who, as well as supplying the wines, have also been helping to train the staff of the Albert in the way of the grape. If you like your wine best with a hearty meal, then the Albert’s menu makes for some essential reading, with plenty of tasting notes and recommendations for you to peruse. On the wine list, you’ll now find offerings from various regions, including Chile, Bulgaria, Italy and Australia, and can choose from red, white, rosé or sparkling varieties, or even wash down pudding with a dessert wine. You can visit the Albert on Madoc Street in Llandudno. Find out more about the pub at or call 01492 877188.

about cheese and when presented with a cheeseboard, most of us would have to admit that there won’t be much left once we’re done! What makes cheese and biscuits particularly good is that it goes so well with a glass of good wine – red or dry white, your choice.

CooKies Nothing quite beats freshly made cookies. Try this recipe for a delicious treat that you can share or keep all to yourself! ingredients 150g salted butter 80g light brown muscovado sugar 80g granulated sugar 2 tsp vanilla extract 1 large egg 225g plain flour ½ tsp bicarbonate of soda ¼ tsp salt 200g plain chocolate chips or chunks 1 Preheat the oven to 190C. Line two baking trays with non-stick baking paper. 2 Put the butter and sugars into a bowl and beat until creamy. Beat in the vanilla extract and egg. Sieve the flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt over the mixture and mix in with a wooden spoon. Add the chocolate chips 3 Using a teaspoon, place small mounds of the mixture well apart on the baking trays. 4 Bake in the oven for 8–10 mins until light brown on the edges and still slightly soft in the centre. 5 Leave on the tray for a couple of minutes to firm up and then transfer to a cooling rack. Hands off!

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 53


Sweet like Chocolate

NORTH WALES Anglesey: Ysgol David Hughes. 3rd Saturday of every month. www. 01248 490 213 Celyn Farmer’s Market, Mold: The Church Hall, King Street. First and third Saturday of every month. www. 07810 637233 Colwyn Bay: Bay View Shopping Centre. Every Thursday. 01492 680209 Conwy: Conwy RSPB Reserve. Last Wednesday of every month. 01492 584091 Denbigh: Town Hall. Every Friday, 9:15am12:15pm. Llangollen: Town Hall. Every Friday, 9:45am12:30pm. Porthmadog: Y Ganolfan, near the harbour. Last Saturday of every month. Rhos on Sea: Methodist Church Hall. Every Friday, 10-12pm. Ruthin: Market Hall. Every Friday, 8:30am12pm. Rossett: Village Hall. Every Friday, 10am12pm. People’s Market, Wrexham: Every Friday, 9am-2pm.

MiD WALES Aberystwyth: North Parade. First and third Saturday of every month. 01970 633066 Brecon: Market Hall. Second Saturday of every month. 01982 560240 Welshpool: Coed-y-Dinas. First Saturday of each month

CHESHiRE Celyn Farmer’s Market, Chester: Grosvenor Garden Centre. Second Friday of every month., 07810 637233 Chester: Town Hall Square. Fourth Saturday of every month. 01244 402340 Wirral: New Ferry Village Hall. Second Saturday of every month. 0151 643 1393 Farndon: Chapel House, Church Street. Every Wednesday, 9am-11:30am Frodsham: The Bear’s Paw, Main Street. Every Thursday, 9am-12pm Nantwich: Market Hall, Churchyardside. Every Thursday, 8am-12pm Tattenhall: Barbour Institute. Every Friday, 9:15am-11:15am

SHROPSHiRE Oswestry: The Bailey Head. Last Friday of every month. 01691 680222 Bishop’s Castle: Town Hall and Market Square. Third Saturday of every month. 01588 638141 Ludlow: Castle Square. Second and fourth Thursday of every month. 01584 872043 Shrewsbury: The Square. First Friday of every month. 01743 792547 Whitchurch: Outside the Civic Centre. First Saturday of every month. 01948 665761

WE TRY BENJAMIN LEE’S BEAUTIFUL HAND-MADE ARTISAN CHOCOLATES Valentine’s Day is fast approaching and what better gift for the occasion (or for any other occasion, for that matter!) than a selection of handmade chocolates? In the interests of helping you to find the ideal gift for a loved one, we tried some of the tasty offerings from Benjamin Lee Chocolatier and Patissier based in Anglesey – it’s a tough job, but someone has to do it! l The star anise and cinnamon chocolate had a delicious soft filling with delicate spice flavours. The chocolate was quite clearly of high quality and had a lovely smooth texture. l Lemon and fresh basil may sound like odd choices to go with chocolate, but trust us, the end result is delicious. Overall, this one is very smooth and you can definitely taste the basil, though the taste of lemon really cuts through. l The raspberry and marzipan flavour was the favourite of at least one of our tasters. This one was very sweet and, with the combination of fruit and marzipan, was reminiscent of cherry bakewells! The whole almond in the middle was a nice surprise. l As with all of the chocolates, the raspberry ganache chocolate was incredibly pretty, with a pink pattern on the top. The flavour of raspberry was subtle, backed up by a strong hit of cocoa. Benjamin Lee Chocolatier and Patissier – visit the shop in Menai Bridge, Anglesey or give them a call on 01248 712778. Go online at

Joint Venture

Undercover Restaurant Critic

quALiTy WELSH MEAT FROM BWyDLyN, AND yOu CAN NOW ORDER ONLiNE Bwydlyn, a quality Welsh butcher Unlike most food based in Pwllheli and part of Harlech critics, we go Foodservice, have undercover, pay launched a brand for our own meals new website, so you and come away to can get the best tell you the truth. quality meat without having to leave the THE NARROWcomfort of your own BOAT INN home. Bwydlyn are specialists in 21-day Ellesmere Road, Whittington, Shropshire mature Welsh beef As the name suggests, the Narrowboat Inn sits and superior Welsh alongside the Llangollen Canal and, when the lamb and offer an weather is on your side, you can eat outside and exceptional range watch the boats cruise past. Even if the weather of fresh meats means that you’d rather be inside, you needn’t in store or online worry as the interior is cosy with a bar that which can be delivered next day, stocks a good variety of beers. direct to your door. All the meat Upon our arrival, we were given a warm supplied is cut and prepared by welcome by the friendly barmaid, who has been the skilled team of butchers and at the Narrowboat Inn for 32 years. Feeling delivered six days a week. peckish, we were presented with a menu ‘Bwydlyn first opened plus a specials board to choose from. its door in Pwllheli in We chose a medium rare steak (a 1996 and today is very reasonable £12.95) and a still a favourite on Win! Win! Win! minted lamb shank (£11.95) plus the high street For your chance a beer and a cider. The food amongst locals and to win a bumper of shortly arrived, served on heated visitors,’ says Laura Welsh produce from Foskett Roberts plates and my steak was grilled Bwydlyn, turn to our from Harlech to perfection. The quantity was great competitions on Foodservice. ‘Our just right and newspapers are Welsh lamb and beef page 118 thoughtfully provided. is carefully sourced As well as the pub, the owner from selected farmers Colin, a hyperactive 80 year old, runs and suppliers throughout a fleet of hire boats and does outside Wales ensuring we provide catering as well as a dry dock for repairs our customers with simply the best at Whixall. Colin is chatty, friendly and is premium produce.’ constantly bustling around keeping eyes on every Bwydlyn is now also offering part of his empire. Overall, the Narrowboat Inn special rewards to its loyal offers good food prepared by an excellent chef, customers. As part of a newly friendly staff and reasonable prices with the launched loyalty scheme, customers entertainment from narrow boats thrown in. can receive a free meat gift on their The only downside is the fact that the inn tenth visit to the shop (minimum closes in the afternoon so make sure you get spend of £10 per visit). For customers there for lunch between noon and 2pm. Colin: ordering online, there is free delivery I urge you to open it all day especially in the on all orders over £75. Visit the new Bwydlyn website summer and capture all the passing trade you at or you can are missing! Ring 01691 661051 for reservations, place an order over the phone by boat hire and outside catering. calling 01758 612136.

54 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

LEWIS’S FARM SHOP The home of real food - Eyton, Wrexham

N EW ‘B EEF BOX’ PA CKAGE AVAILA BLE! Get enou gh beef to la s t you up to s ix month s for £


• In house kitchen providing home made cakes and pies every day • • Beef and Lamb reared on our farm and butchered on site • • Other produce all local and high quality • • Free range chickens and eggs • • Large barbecue range • • Extensive Deli selection with many Welsh and English cheeses •

A family business that’s in our blood! 2009, 2010, 2011 & 2013 Wrexham sausage champions Traditional recipes in the good old fashioned way Lewis’s Farm Shop Brook Cottage, Eyton, Wrexham LL13 0SW Telephone: 01978 780852 Open Tuesday - Saturday 10am to 5pm and Sunday from 11am to 4pm.


Our aim at Battlefield 1403 is to create a happy and relaxed visitor destination where everyone feels welcome. The Farm Shop has an extensive range of food and gifts. Our head butcher Steve and his team can cater for your specific needs at competitive prices. The cafe serves restaurant style meals in a relaxed environment.

We wish all our customers a happy New Year Battlefield 1403, Upper Battlefield, Shrewsbury SY4 3DB Tel : 01939 210905


Meet the Chef: Simon Radley we meet a miCheLin-starred CheF in Chester The Garden by Simon Radley at Oddfellows was launched in 2012 by Michelin star chef, Simon Radley. Simon’s name is already synonymous with outstanding cuisine – Simon Radley at The Grosvenor Hotel has held its Michelin star since 1990 and has also been awarded four rosettes by the AA. Simon’s first introduction to The Chester Grosvenor was at just 21 years of age in 1986. Simon took time away during the hotel’s closure 1987-88 to work with chef Paul Gayler at Inigo Jones in Covent Garden. He returned to The Chester Grosvenor and in 1988 as sous chef, worked his way up and in 2005 became the director of catering. It was in 2008 that the restaurant was renamed in his honour. Simon works closely with the team at The Garden by Simon Radley at Oddfellows to provide a high-quality menu. ‘I design menus together with Steve Tuke, the talented head chef at Oddfellows,’ explains Simon. ‘He is responsible and hands-on on a day-to-day level and I collaborate with him creatively. Choosing which dishes go on the menu is a process between Steve and myself – we discuss ideas we both have and Steve puts together dishes. The menu is constantly evolving. The Garden by Simon Radley is a Mediterranean restaurant so we are influenced from all areas of the Mediterranean, which is great because of the diversity of the food. It’s great, for example, to be able to find inspiration from southern France and Morocco, two very different cuisines. (Dear reader – turn to our review on page 48.) ‘When creating a dish, it’s all about the ingredients for me – I love simplicity. Of course, simplicity only works when you start with the best ingredients. We work with good suppliers, local wherever possible, and seasonal ingredients. The only difference is that with a Mediterranean restaurant did you know? we sometimes need to source our ingredients from further away to the Michelin make a dish authentic.’ Guide began as a



promotional giveaway, first published by brothers andre and edouard in 1900, and part of the Michelin tyre company

Food Events

M Saturday 22nd Feb ruary LudLow Food Centre Pies and a Pint Festiva L An invitation for all tho se who love pies and a pint to head to the Ludlow Food Cen tre for this celebration of Britishn ess. The region is brimming with small breweries and Shropsh ire is famous for pies, so it’s natura l to enjoy them both at the sam e time! M Friday 28th Februa ry rhyL PaviLion ready steady Cook Live Britain’s most succes sful TV cookery show will be coming to Rhyl as part of its UK-wide tou r. Featuring Chef Lesley Waters, who appeared in over 500 editions of the programme, top TV chefs, and the iconic ‘quickie bag’. M tueSday 25th Feb ruary Venue CyMru, Cater Fare Now in its seventh yea r, with over sixty catering and equ ipment companies on show, this year promises to be the bes t ever! So if you make anythin g from a cup of tea to a ban quet, make sure you attend!

the albion ale houSe uppergate Street, Conwy ll32 8rF The Albion Ale House in Conwy is the result of the combined efforts of four north Wales breweries – Conwy, Great Orme, Nant and Purple Moose, so it’s little wonder that it has a fantastic reputation both locally and further afield for real ales, and there’s always a good selection to be found at the bar. However, if ale isn’t quite to your taste, then you can always take a look at the wine list, which has been developed with the help of Vinomondo in Conwy. The fantastic selection of ales, drinks, nibbles and even bar games has ensured that the Albion Ale House has bucked the trend, which sees more and more pubs closing. The pub has been so successful in fact, that in October it was named as CAMRA’s Welsh pub of the year and will be featured in this year’s Good Beer Guide. 01492 582484,

blaCk boy inn northgate Street, Caernarfon ll55 1rW Just a minute’s walk away from Caernarfon’s 13th century castle, you’ll find the Black Boy Inn, which has been a welcome retreat for weary travellers for nearly five centuries. The inn is one of the few remaining free houses in the UK that is still owned by an independent family business. The traditional real ale bars feature heavy oak beams, thick stone walls and a good selection of locally brewed Welsh ales and local lagers. In 2009 and 2010, the Black Boy Inn was awarded the Cask Marque award for the quality of their ales. For those who prefer the grape, there’s a comprehensive wine list. The Black Boy Inn is a dining favourite of the locals, and it’s clear why. Head chef Marius and his team have created a great menu that features quality locally sourced ingredients and a mouth-watering array of fresh seafood. 01286 673604,

the red lion Church road, dodleston Ch4 9nG Located in the village of Dodleston, Cheshire, the Red Lion is a country pub that oozes rural charm and plenty of character. The inn dates back all the way to 1737 and in the autumn of 1845 it became the site of a battle between angry Irish and English farm labourers. These days things are a lot more tranquil at the Red Lion and it’s the perfect place to relax and enjoy the Cheshire countryside, with a drink in hand, of course. Among the drinks on offer are seasonal cask ales, all lovingly kept and Cask Marque accredited for quality. There’s also wine for every occasion, a variety of ciders and a good selection of spirits. If you find yourself a bit peckish during a visit to the Red Lion, you certainly won’t be disappointed with the food on offer. The menu has everything from pub food classics such as a British beef burger or the homemade fish pie to something a little more unusual, such as the wild boar and chorizo burger. 01244 661636,

the PlouGh inn Wistanstow, near Craven arms Sy7 8dG The Plough is a traditional country pub set in the village of Wistanstow, near Church Stretton and Craven Arms. Its position in the middle of the Shropshire hills makes the pub the perfect spot for families, walkers, cyclists, foodies and beer lovers to stop for a bite to eat and a pint. The Plough adjoins the widely renowned Wood’s Brewery, so off course there’s a good selection of Wood’s ales on offer, including their top-selling Shropshire Lad, locals’ favourite Parish Bitter and the award-winning Pot of Gold. Seasonal specials are also available on draft. In the newly refurbished dining room, you can grab a bite to eat from the seasonal menu. The food is made using ingredients from responsible local producers. As well as the seasonal menu, there’s a regularly updated specials board. 01588 673251,

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 57

10 ROOMS AVAILABLE The Antelope Hotel, Denbigh Road, Rhydymwyn Flintshire CH7 5HE 01352 741 247


Three-course meal for two, plus a bottle of wine for just


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New owners Eleanor & Neil would like to invite you to The Antelope Hotel, Bar & Restaurant. Located in the historic village of Rhydymwyn, near Mold, the Antelope Hotel will always give you a warm welcome. Just 2 minutes from Mold, or only a 20-minute drive from Chester railway station, The Antelope is within easy travelling distance of the many spectacular castles, beaches and other attractions of North Wales. The AntelopeHotel is ideal - whatever your reason for a break

Licensed Public Bar

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Stephanie Booth



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BRO HURE AVAIC LABL E SEA FRONT WITH INDOOR POOL, RESTAURANT, BAR, LIFT, CAR PARK Arbour Hotel, The Promenade Barmouth, Gwynedd LL42 1NE Telephone: 01341 280459


Downtown Abbey in Ceredigion It was as if we were living the quintessential Downton Abbey experience, but we were actually enjoying the charm and old world character of Nanteos…


magine driving down a narrow country lane in rural north Wales. Overhanging trees have shed most of their leaves and the sun is glinting through the gaps. Suddenly, there before you is Nanteos Mansion, an 18th century Grade I listed former country house that has been lovingly restored and transformed into a luxury hotel. We are given a warm welcome by Sarah and Gareth, who manage the reception, and then offered a drink in the Library Bar before we go through to lunch. Sarah joins us in the library and tells us some of the history of the house. Records of the estate stretch back to the 13th century when it was one of the most important estates in Ceredigion, covering some 35,000 acres and a major employer of the county. The mansion was built by the wealthy Powell family in 1793 and it remained in family ownership for over 200 years. As we sit and chat we are joined by chef patron, Nigel Jones who brings with him a selection of delicious canapés to enjoy with our drinks. Nigel has been at Nanteos for two years, first as head chef and more recently as chef patron. Nigel is a larger than life individual who wants to share the unique Nanteos experience with as many people as possible. ‘Nanteos has immense history and charm and despite its size it’s not at all imposing. When people visit us you can watch them mellow as they fall under its spell,’ he says.

Fabulous Food For lunch, we are taken through to the Nightingale Restaurant. The room is elegantly furnished as you would expect, with open fires, wood panelling and a feature bay window that looks out onto the rolling hills. It is difficult to choose from the varied á la carte menu, as everything sounds delicious but I can’t resist the starter of seared devilled lamb kidneys with braised field mushrooms, followed by the Nanteos steak – a 35-day dry aged beef served with roasted bone marrow, wagyu beef dripping chips and selection of butters. With help from Nigel my

dining partner opts for the chilli salt squid and venison cutlet to follow. My devilled kidneys were delicious but it was my steak that really blew me away – unbelievably tender and so full of flavour. The wagyu beef dripping chips were also superb – I was tempted to order some more as my partner kept stealing them! Her squid was fabulous, and the venison cutlet was beautifully presented with roast baby turnips, salsify, sweet red cabbage and a roasted puréed celeriac.

a special location Nanteos sits in a valley and has about 50 acres of grounds including woodland, fields, lakes and streams. This gives guests immediate access to outdoor pursuits. ‘Shooting, fishing, walking, cycling, kayaking and canoeing are just a few of the activities that guests can enjoy,’ says Nigel. For some, simply walking through the unspoilt parkland and breathing in the fresh clean air special offer for Yattar Yattar readers! is enough, but for those with an adrenaline book an overnight stay seeking personality there are great at nanteos and enjoy a adventures to be had whether on wheels, 15% discount! simply on horseback, on water or in the air. y mention Yattar Yattar To find out more about Nanteos visit the website:

Weddings at Nanteos

when you book to take advantage of this offer. call 01970 600522 to make your booking.

nanteos offers brides a spectacular backdrop on their special day. the most popular choice for wedding ceremonies is the ornate music room, and it’s easy to see why – with its stunning ceilings, huge mirrors and spectacular picture windows, any bride would feel special in these surroundings. the grounds are also impressive with a beautiful walled garden, an ornamental carp lake and a cobbled stable yard that are ideal for wedding photographs. of course, there is also fabulous food available for any wedding at the mansion and nigel is happy to discuss any requirements. ‘i am always delighted when brides tell us exactly what they want,’ he says. ‘We have an excellent choice of wedding menus but it’s fun to do something a bit different. We always cook everything from scratch using only the finest local ingredients.’

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 59

Patricia Peixoto, at the Casa de Santa Vitória Wine Cellar

Hotel Convento do Espinheiro, a five-star converted monastery

Reliable ripening in the hot summers is one big advantage for Portuguese wine


he thing about Portuguese wine,’ says my travelling companion and wine expert, ‘is that, by and large, they keep the best stuff for themselves.’ And he is not wrong. ‘Go to the supermarket and you will find precious little on the shelves – perhaps a nice Tempranillo or a bottle or Vinho Verde, which we’ve been familiar with for years.’ But, as we were about to discover, this is just the tip of the vine… Portugal’s northern, dry Douro region is perhaps the best known, and produces some lovely, soft red wine, but we were heading somewhere altogether unknown – inland to the Alentejo region in the middle of the country – to discover what the Portuguese vineyards had been hiding away all these years.

Exceptionally good years So where can we find some of this great wine they’ve been keeping back from our supermarket shelves? Having stayed overnight in the town of Estremoz at the historic hotel (or ‘Pousada’), our first stop is the Adega da Cartuxa winery. They’re famous in Portugal for their Pêra Manca red wine, a wine so exclusive it is only made in years where the harvest is exceptionally good. It costs 100 euros (£80) buying direct from the vineyard, and a lot more in a restaurant. We arrive at harvest time, joining a team of grape pickers (all women, working in 40-degree heat) moving up and down the lines of grapes to hand pick the deep red, ripe bunches

A Tour of

Portuguese Vineyards

We head inland to the Alentejo region to discover what the Portuguese vineyards had been hiding away all these years… into trays for the tractors to stack and take immediately to the winery for processing and fermentation in large vats. We are given the chance to try our hand at grape picking, which is harder than it looks. You really do have to be careful not to lose a finger! Its baking hot (even in September), and it’s no wonder the pickers have their heads covered and a backpack of water. Our tour of the Cartuxa winery shows how the monastery’s cellars create the perfect conditions for storing the wine in oak barrels before bottling, and gives us a practical demonstration of how different grape varieties, native to Portugal, give different aromas and flavours in the resulting wine. The combination of ripe berries, floral aromas like violet and spice make ‘Tempranillo’ one of the backbones of Portuguese wine, used in many of their reds. Ripening in the hot summers is one of the reasons Portuguese wine lasts so long on the shelf. ‘Arinto’ is the mainstay of white wine in Portugal, combined in Alentejo usually with

‘Floral aromas like violet and spice make ‘Tempranillo’ one of the backbones of Portuguese wine’

60 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Antão Vaz grapes and Roupeiro. We are invited for lunch and a wine tasting, showing the difference in the progression from their entry level wines upwards. All Cartuxa wines are very good, whatever the price – both red and white are fruity with a judicious use of oak, and we would recommend the Cartuxa Red 2010 and White 2010 – about £5 per bottle. But you won’t find it in the supermarket. We stay at the grand Hotel Convento do Espinheiro, a five-star converted monastery with its own grand gold-leaf adorned chapel (available for weddings!). The wine tasting in the blue-lit cellar is a marvel, accompanied with the selection of local cheese, ham and olives. We were invited to sample a Portuguese sparkling rosé amongst other whites and reds, a demonstration by the sommelier of the range and quality across Portuguese wine, and labels we had never seen in the UK. There were whole shelves of Pêra Manca – 300 Euros each – for their guests. The next day we head out to the countryside to find the other end of the wine scale. The family of Filipe Teixeira Pinto has invested in land they bought for hunting with vineyards and winemaking

The Cartuxa winery, where the ex-monastery’s cellars create the perfect conditions


Redondo, home of the Alentejo wine museum

The Herdade da Malhadinha Nova: a lunch in the shade

facilities, producing by comparison a small output. The whole enterprise has taken 12 years to get where they are now from the beginning, driven by Filipe’s friendly enthusiasm. We enjoy figs, goats cheese and a rustic boar stew and the ever popular migas (or ‘crumbs’ – a tasty savoury bread pudding) at dinner with Filipe, and his Sobroso Tinto 2010. This was a perfect end to the day, having just been driven around the estate to see live boar and stags on the land.

Tasting the harvest What we’re learning is that the Portuguese wine makers, having a whole range of local grape varieties to hand, are becoming adept at blending and oak conditioning in a way that keeps the wine distinct. We see a good demonstration of this at the next winery, the Casa de Santa Vitória Wine Cellar where we are given a tour and lesson in the different taste results by the charming Patricia Peixoto, where we got to taste the fermented grape juice, just days into the wine making process after the harvest, and could taste for ourselves how the characteristics of the different grapes end up in the final wine. We are treated to some of the best wines on offer: the Touriga Nacional 2009 and the lovely Grande Reserva 2009 (still not on sale – they wait a year or two until it gets better. Look for earlier years).

The Herdade da Malhadinha Nova is our final stop, for lunch in the shade on land that holds the luxury hotel, horse stables and winery. Started by brothers in 1998, their wine is very good. We’re certainly impressed by the hotel. Again we are given the chance to taste the very new fermenting grape juice – we watch the trays of grapes arriving and be hand sorted by the workers on a belt carrying the justpicked bunches into the fermenting vats. It doesn’t get any more immediate than this. We are tasting the essence of the vineyards production at the key moment of harvest, when wine makers have to decide when is the optimum time to harvest the grapes. So, back in the UK our advice is this: find an independent wine merchants and talk to them about Portuguese wine. It really is good, and great value – partly because wine drinkers in this country don’t know about it yet. So keep it to yourself. Shhh! y

Sunvil Discovery Tel: 020 8758 4722 or go online to offers tailormade itineraries across the Alentejo. Our itinerary costs from £819 pp (two sharing) including return flights (Heathrow) with TAP Portugal (www., seven nights’ B&B accommodation staying at the Hotel Convento do Espinheiro in Evora and the Pousada Rainha Santa Isabel in Estremoz, and car hire. For more about Alentejo, go to

Estremoz, a town famed for fine marble

Cork tree jungle

Alentejo is also famous for its huge cork production (the roads are lined with the distinctive de-barked cork trees, numbered to show when the next 10-yearly harvest is due). Cork is a wonderful material, so heat resistant that NASA have used it as a protective layer on their space shuttles! For wine bottles, cork is being replaced more and more by screwtops, which we think is a shame. Screwtops will not contaminate the wine (about five percent of wine can be ‘corked’, meaning that the wine has a musty smell caused by the cork), and unlike synthetic corks they will not shorten the shelf life because oxidation is kept at bay for longer. So we will see the trend for screwtops, started in the Americas and Australasia, continue. However, screwtops certainly lessen the drama of opening a bottle of wine, which is a great loss, and when you visit Portugal and drive through the fields of cork trees, the olives tress and the vineyards, the whole thing just makes sense!

Always read the label

The wine industry in Portugal has received a lot of useful investment over the last few years, and new, modern production facilities are one reason why Portugal is catching up to the rest of Europe. But they do not want to simply copy where others have gone before – each region in Portugal is determined to establish their own reputation in the wine world. So the designation ‘Alentejo DOC’ (Denominacao de Origem Controlada) on wine from Alentejo show that quality and domestic grapes are being used. If you go to a wine merchants and find a Portuguese wine with this label you will not be disappointed. And the great thing about Portuguese wine is that even with the UK’s very high taxes it represents great value, much like the Chilean wines, whose sauvignon blanc remains very popular with white drinkers.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 61

• Antique & Vintage • Crystal • Silver • China • Jewellery • Gifts Galore & Cards • Daily Craft Demonstrations • Coffee • Lunch & Afternoon Tea-Where Homemade is our Speciality • A perfect place to eat with friends FIND US AT AFONWEN, NEAR CAERWYS, CH7 5UB ONLY 5 MINS OFF THE A55 JUNCTION 31

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Everything you will ever need for your garden, outdoor furniture and gift ideas, all under one roof set in the stunning Conwy Valley.


Fulfil your garden’s potential with a visit to Snowdonia Nurseries and be inspired by the magnificent array of plants, gifts and furniture. Soak up the excitement of Spring over a hot drink or delicious lunch in The Olive Tree Coffee Shop a embrace the endless and possibi possibilities for your home a garden this year. and

Conw Snowdonia Nurseries, Llanrwst Road, Glan Conwy, Ba Conwy LL28 5SR. Colwyn Bay, W T 01492 580703

Ar Co ts rne r

Sc oil ulpt s a ur nd e, c mo raf re ts, e –i t’s ngra all vi he ng, re!

EvEnts at afonwEn

l friday 17th January Painting with stuart Stuart has a beautiful and relaxed style in his painting and will be sharing his watercolours skills with visitors. l saturday 18th and sunday 19th January north wales Upholstery Michelle from North Wales Upholstery will be holding a class over the weekend to pass on some traditional upholstery skills. l tuesday 21st January Julie and Eileen Handmade bags with gorgeous materials and hand knitted toys to be loved forever. l wednesday 22nd January susie Q and Kay Gorgeous beaded jewellery and hand crochet baby garments, gloves, scarves and more… l thursday 22nd and friday 23rd sparkles Cards Fabulous handmade cards for all occasions.

Brush up your skills! Established in 1991, the Afonwen Craft and Antique Centre is packed with fabulous antiques and vintage pieces, ‘forever’ furniture that you’ll treasure, a wide range of gifts and plenty more. Located in the beautiful Welsh countryside just 15 minutes away from Mold and 25 minutes from Chester, the centre is run by Janet and Adrian along with their team of dedicated staff. ‘We are very proud of the centre and our staff,’ says Janet. ‘Good traditional service with a friendly smile is a must, and as an independent business is very important to us.’ One of the most unique attractions at Afonwen is the chance to meet with local craftspeople and to see them in action. ‘Our visiting crafts people are delighted to

Dogged Enthusiasm

If you want a unique way to send someone your warm wishes, then what better way than a specially chosen greetings card? TS Greetings Cards offer a range of unique cards for every occasion, blank inside to leave you space to write a message to that special person. The TS Greetings Cards range was created in honour of Glenys’ dogs. ‘Our family have always been animal lovers,’ says Glenys. ‘We’ve had dogs ever since I can remember. Our last two, Toby and Scotty who are sadly no longer with us, were both Labradors and they were hilarious – if there was mischief to get up to, then they would get up to it! They made us laugh all the time, so I created the Toby and Scotty range of greetings cards, which shows the funny side of dogs.’ Designs include cartoon versions of Toby and Scotty taking a bath, playing football, opening presents or just relaxing, all hand drawn by Glenys. ‘Drawing the designs brought back all the good times that we had,’ says Glenys. ‘I hope that other people will get as much enjoyment out of the greetings cards as I did from creating them and I’m looking forward to creating more designs in the future.’ To see TS Greetings Cards range or to find out more, visit or call 07835 576298.

share their skills and chat about their work,’ says Janet. Demonstrations include painting on silk or canvas, watercolours, paper bonding, jewellery making and lovespoon carving to name just a few. Of course, no visit to the centre would be complete without a visit to Edenshine restaurant, where you can enjoy a delicious meal or a scrumptious homemade cake made using local ingredients wherever possible. ‘Using local and supporting local makes sense and allows us to use excellent quality produce to create our delicious recipes,’ says Janet. Afonwen Craft and Antique Centre is located near Caerwys, Mold. Open Tuesday-Sunday. For more info, visit or call 01352 720965.

Local artists at Willow Gallery

Don’t miss your chance to see a wide range of paintings, drawings and mixed media by members of the Oswestry and District Society of Artists on display at the Willow Gallery in Oswestry. The society, based in the Eastern Oswestry Community Centre, aims to bring together like-minded artists and art lovers to share their interest in all forms of painting and drawing. The exhibition is the first for the society at the Willow Gallery and will see over 160 works of art on display and available for visitors to buy. The exhibition will be on show until 13th January at the Willow Gallery in Oswestry. The gallery is open from 10am to 5:30pm Monday to Saturday. Find out more at www.willowartgallery. or call the gallery on 01691 657575. You can find out more about ODSA by calling membership secretary Mr Sayers on 01948 780376.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 63

s s t t eerr r r A rrn A n o o CC f tudies o ‘Three S ud’ by Fre Lucien con has a B Francis een sold at b y tl yerecen for an e auction 142 million g waterin aking it the m , rs a ll art o d pensive e t mos x se ever purcha

Exhibition Diary l Worktown: The Drawings of Falcon Hildred National Museum of Wales, Llanberis, Until 6th January Showcasing the life’s work of artist Falcon Hildred, documenting the industrial landscapes and buildings of England and Wales. l Vincent Price: Tales of Terror Oriel Gallery, Clwyd Theatr Cymru, Mold, until 11th January An Aberystwyth Arts Centre touring exhibition. Aberystwyth Arts Centre has gathered its own collection of art in honour of Vincent Price, and this exhibition takes a look at how his films have been represented across the world. l Island Art Group Canolfan Ucheldre Center, Millbank, Holyhead Until 12th January The Island Art Group started in 1987 as the Nant yr Odyn Art Club, before changing its name to the Island Art Group in 1992 after moving to another studio. It is still going strong with workshops, painting holidays, exhibitions and portrait group. This retrospective exhibition celebrates 26 years of work by both present and past members of the Island Art Group. l A Retrospective Exhibition Ruthin Craft Centre, Ruthin Until 26th January A travelling exhibition of the ceramics of Dr Emmanuel Cooper (1938 – 2012), who was a distinguished craftsman, writer, teacher and broadcaster. A potter of international standing, his work is represented in many public collections. Produced by Ruthin Craft Centre in collaboration with the University of Derby. l Open Exhibition The Royal Cambrian Academy, Conwy 11th January – 22nd February A variety of work selected by members of the Royal Cambrian Academy which offers a platform for new, exciting and original work. The exhibition will offer a broad range of subjects and media, a prize will be awarded to the best work or works in the show.

Thanks for the Memories

People from all over Wales and further afield are being asked to submit their favourite memories of Theatr Gwynedd. These memories will go on to form part of a multimedia exhibition that will celebrate the theatre’s legacy and its contribution to the cultural life of both Bangor and Wales as a whole. The exhibition has been organised to coincide with the opening of the new Pontio Arts and Innovation Centre in autumn 2014. ‘Generations of people from Wales and beyond have very special memories of Theatr Gwynedd,’ says Elen ap Robert, Pontio’s artistic director. ‘It might be an unforgettable drama, seeing a pantomime as a child, treading the boards as an actor. If you have a special memory of Theatr Gwynedd to share with us, we’d love to hear it.’ Find out more at www. or call the Pontio shop on 01248 383838.


Greetings Cards Want to send someone a unique card made by your own fair hands this Valentine’s Day? It’s not be as hard as you think… To start, you’ll need a card base. You can make your own from plain card, but pre-folded cards in a variety of colours, often with matching envelopes are available from most craft shops and aren’t expensive. To decorate your card, you can reuse old wrapping paper, buy decorations, or even select pieces of old greetings cards that you may have received. Now you only need some paper glue and a steady hand. With a bit of creativity and imagination, you can create an attractive, unique greetings card of your own. To get started, pay a visit to your local craft shop or keep an eye out for classes in your local area.

64 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

You’ve Been Framed!

Are you a budding artist? Oriel Davies Gallery in Newtown is seeking submissions from artists working in any medium including performance, sound, digital, installation, painting, sculpture, print, photography and moving image and applied art and craft for the return of the Oriel Davies Open for 2014. Entry is open to both professional artists and students aged 17 and over who are currently training in visual art, and there is no geographical restriction. A painting by Cezanne, Entrants have the chance to win one of three prizes – a first prize of £1,000 and worth £40m, was bought a solo exhibition at Oriel Davies will be in a Northamptonshire awarded by judges to the best entry while junk shop for £100 – the the best student entry will receive £500. buyer simply ‘liked Also, £250 will be awarded to the most the frame’! popular work or collection as voted by the viewing public during the exhibition. To enter your artwork into Oriel Davies Open 2014, send up to three entries, a signed entry form, an artist’s statement and a self-addressed envelope (if you would like your entry returned) along with entry payment of £15 for one entry, £20 for two entries or £25 for three to Oriel Open 2014, Oriel Davies Gallery, The Park, Newtown, Powys SY16 2NZ. All entries must arrive at the gallery by Monday 13th January. The Oriel Davies Open will be open to visitors from Saturday 26th April to Wednesday 18th June. To find out more about the competition, visit www. where you can also download an entry form or call 01686 625041.

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Imagine the sheer delight of coming home to a sparkling clean house, but not all of us have the time to make sure that our house is completely spick and span. If you want to free up some of your time, or just want to give your house a deep clean for the New Year, let Molly Maid clean your home from top to bottom, ensuring that nothing is overlooked. ‘For over 12 years, Molly Maid Chester has been providing professional cleaning services to our Chester and Wrexham customers,’ says Louise Bain of Molly Maid. ‘Our professionally trained and uniformed teams, covered by our industry leading insurance for your peace of mind, will clean to your individual requirements.’ Spring cleaning is a welcome tradition for many people. After months of dark, cold winter, spring cleaning signifies the return of spring and spending time outdoors! A spring clean is a great way to remove all of Forty-seven percent of the cobwebs and start afresh. couples argue about If you are interested in having a spring clean or a the cleaning. And did regular clean please contact Molly Maid Chester to arrange a free in-home, no-obligation estimate at a you know that the time convenient to you, telephone 01978 310209.

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All Change!

Bespoke kitchens from Conels in Llandudno If you’re looking to upgrade your kitchen to a new model, then visit Conels in Llandudno, a family-run business that specialises in giving you the kitchen of your dreams. The business is run by husband and wife team, Daris and Sue, who opened their showroom in 2006. ‘We offer a wide range of kitchens to suit various tastes, styles and budgets,’ says Sue. ‘All our kitchens are manufactured in the UK using solid wood and foiled wrapped doors and bespoke is our speciality. We can design a kitchen to fit any space using computer design software and we can supply everything required for your dream kitchen. We provide a free local measuring, plan and design service. For customers further afield we would normally ask them to supply dimensions that we can initially work from, this would be check measured on an order being placed.’ Conels can simply supply your kitchen or can completely project manage from start to finish. ‘We can do as much or as little as the customer wants,’ explains Sue. ‘This includes arranging a plumber, electrician and tiler where needed.’ Once your kitchen is installed, you can rest safe in the knowledge that if anything goes wrong, your kitchen will be repaired – all of Conels’ kitchens come with a five-year guarantee on kitchen doors and a 12 month guarantee on cabinet carcasses. Visit to find out more or call 01492 874850. You can visit the shop on Vaughan Street in Llandudno from 9:30am to 5pm, Monday to Saturday.

Homes& Gardens Now that 2014 is here we’ve got advice on everything from spring cleaning your home to working in the garden ready for springtime

The Heat is On

Winter is most definitely here, and what better way to keep warm on a cold winter’s day than by sitting curled up in front of your own woodburning or multifuel stove. Not only does a stove make a great focal point for your living room, but they can also heat your home for cheaper than a central heating system. Bunners in Montgomery, Powys stock stoves from a wide variety of manufacturers, including Euroheat and Town and Country who are considered to be two of the best in the business. Town and Country are one of the very few stove companies who make their stoves from start to finish, and their stoves are produced from high-quality British steel. Euroheat are so confident of their stoves’ quality that many models come with a free five-year parts warranty as well as a five-year warranty on the outer body of the stove. Bunners (officially RH Bunner and Son Ltd) has been trading for over an incredible 120 years as a family-run business and has retained its traditional values and service. Bunners staff are happy to discuss your requirements and help you to find a stove that is right for you. They can also recommend qualified HETAS installers if required. If you would like to find out more about Bunners or would like advice on any of their products, visit or call 01686 668308. You can also visit the shop on Arthur Street in Montgomery from 9am to 5:30pm on weekdays and from 9am to 5pm on Saturdays.

66 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

The Great British Spoon Appeal

The British Ironwork Centre in Oswestry, Shropshire has been challenged by famous TV personality and illusionist, Uri Geller, to create a monstrous gorilla statue from a mixture of iron and old spoons collected from schools around the country. The completed creation will be unveiled at the British Ironwork Centre on 17th May. Tickets will be available to see Uri officially reveal the sculpture, and tickets to the unveiling will be provided to reward the most successful collections, as well as rewarding schools and community groups involved.

Winter Gardening

How to send in your spoons If you’d like to donate spoons, simply post them to The British Ironwork Centre, Whitehall, Aston, Oswestry, Shropshire SY11 4JH or visit the centre and deposit them into the spoon bank. For large volumes, the centre hopes to be able to collect in the British Ironworks Travelling Spoon Bank lorry. For more information, call 0800 688 8386.

Floors for living

ANTHoNY FroM Coed-y-dinas GArDeN, HoMe AND CouNTrY CeNTre GIveS uS SoMe Top TIpS For TAkING CAre oF Your GArDeN THrouGH THe WINTer MoNTHS

Does your home need a bit of a makeover this New Year? If your floors are beginning to look a bit tired, you can replace them with new laminate or hardwood flooring from Living Floors. Living Floors are specialist January and February are traditionally installers of parquet flooring and panels, so the coldest months of the year, but there is if you’re thinking of going for the classical still plenty to be done in the garden. Most look, they can advise you from design to of what you do now is in preparation for installation and the perfect finish. Whatever spring, but now is also the perfect time to do style of wooden flooring you choose, Living any hard landscaping that needs to be done, floors can offer you advice and help you to such as laying new paths, paving and patios. choose from their large range. Established in 1997, Living Floors is a family-run business and are Clean and Tidy completely independent, so are free to choose their range from a Now is a good time to give some attention variety of the best manufacturers. As well as the flooring itself, they to your greenhouses, pots, trays and tools – also stock everything you will need to fit your new floor and, as they give them a thorough clean in preparation employ their own fitters, they can even arrange for your floor to be for a new season. Greenhouse windows installed – it’s a one-stop service from measuring and estimating should be opened as often as possible to through to fitting. In addition to installing new floors, Living Floors keep a steady flow of air running also offers a sanding service to revamp your old hardwood through them to keep pests at bay. floors. They also have shutters and blinds available as part of paths and borders should also Coed-y-dinas is located in Living Shutters and Blinds so it isn’t just your floor that can look great! be kept clean and tidy. You Visit Living Floor’s Chester showroom on Chester Trade Park, Bumpers Welshpool and is part of should carry on weeding Lane, Sealand or their Wilmslow showroom on Water Lane. You can call Charlies Stores, which also your garden throughout the Chester showroom on 01244 382416, the Wilmslow showroom on has stores in Aberystwyth, the winter months. Small 01625 533865 or visit for more information. Newtown, Queensferry, weeds are best removed

Home Affairs

If you’re looking for something unique for your home, then a trip to Bella Ivy, which has recently opened in Whitchurch, should definitely be on your ‘to do’ list. The charming shop stocks a wide range of pieces for your home and plenty to give as a gift to someone special. ‘I have always been interested in quirky pieces for the home,’ says shop owner, Georgina White. ‘It seemed like a natural progression from selling at gift fairs to opening a shop. I deliberated about it for a long time, but after losing my gran Ivy in July, I realised that I needed something to really focus my attentions on. The shop is named after her. I sell mainly gift items for the home, but also a few ranges of jewellery and small items of furniture,’ adds Georgina. ‘All of my artwork and pictures are handmade, some locally in Market Drayton. A lot of the wooden items that I stock are handcrafted using reclaimed wood.’ So, what’s next for Bella Ivy? ‘As a new business, I hope to continue to grow and flourish,’ says Georgina. ‘For the New Year I’ll be extending some of my ranges and of course replacing the Christmas stock. I don’t want to give too much away just yet, though!’ You can visit Bella Ivy on Green End, Whitchurch from Monday to Saturday. Contact the shop on 01948 663897 or find Bella Ivy on Facebook.

Shrewsbury and Carmarthen. Visit the store to get expert advice about your garden or visit to find out more.

by hoeing them off or by hand weeding. You can keep your beds weed free by applying a 2-3inch thick mulch of bark chippings or a weed suppressing membrane.

PreParing for sPring providing the soil isn’t too wet and sticky, now is a good time to turn over your soil ready for the coming months. At this time of year it is good to get as much air into the soil as possible. Make sure you improve the soil with soil conditioner, compost or composted bark before any replanting. You should prune any garden shrubs that you have. After pruning, feed your shrubs with a controlled release or slow-acting fertiliser to encourage healthy regrowth and more flowers. You should also feed your trees with a controlled release or slow-acting fertiliser. PlanTing Despite the cold weather, you should still consider doing some planting now. You can sow bedding plant seeds in the greenhouse ready to be moved outside when the weather warms up. While it’s too early to plant them just yet, now is the best time to buy begonias and dahlia tubers together with the huge variety of summer flowering bulbs we have in stock. Get them now to ensure that we have the varieties you want.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 67

Homes & Gardens Curiosity Shop Oakland’s General Auctions in

January Sales

Grab yourself a bargain this New Year as Snowdonia Nurseries and Garden Centre in Glan Conwy hold their January sale! Take this opportunity to find incredible bargains on quality trees and decorations ready for next year’s celebrations. You can also check out the fantastic range of garden accessories, plants and giftware to inspire you for 2014. During your visit to Snowdonia Nurseries and Garden Centre, make sure that you drop into the Olive Tree Coffee Shop for a warm drink or delicious snack – it’s the perfect respite from the cold winter weather. The cosy coffee shop is well established as a favourite with visitors and locals alike and has a selection of cakes to tempt you as well as range of food products that make ideal gifts for the foodie in your life. You can visit Snowdonia Nurseries and Garden Centre from 9am to 5pm Monday to Saturday and from 10:30am to 4:30pm on Sundays. For more information, visit www.snowdonianurseries. or call 01492 580703.

Erddig Gardens Happy New Year!

Weston-under-Redcastle near Shrewsbury are starting the New Year on a high after some very BY HEad GardENEr at ErddiG successful sales in 2013, particularly HousE, GlYN smitH in the antiques and collectables at this time, there is a great deal section. ‘We pride ourselves on our of pruning and training to carry auctions being rich and diverse,’ out on our roses, fruit trees, says Debbie Byrne from Oakland’s shrubs, and climbers. Before General Auctions. ‘There are always starting pruning i always ask myself ‘does this really need bargains to be had and the quality pruning’? if a piece of the and variety of new stock continues bush has died and it would to improve. We are known for having look better if it’s cut out, or to room for the old and curious, the control the shape or size of the odd, the peculiar and the downright plant, or to encourage flowers strange!’ The company has also and fruit, then the answer may be yes. When recently opened smart retail units for pruning to improve the health of the plant, vendors looking for a base to start i need to consider removing the four to grow their own businesses. ‘Retail d’s, dead, diseased, damaged, or units benefit from the auction dying branches, which will visitors and auction advertising,’ tidy up the appearance says Debbie. ‘All the available and prevent the spread units were quickly taken of disease. i remove up and we have further crossing branches expansion planned together The birthflower for January rubbing and already have two and thin out weak babies is the carnation or apprentice positions and congested twigs, allowing identified.’ For more the snowdrop. For those light into the plant information visit www. born in February, your and to improve

Did you know?

birthflower is the iris.

Home shopping Handmade first class lampshade, £36.00 Available from Make The Most Of www.makethemostof., 01244 345954

Red and cream ceramic crockery Available from Coed-y-Dinas 01938 555545

Sits shell swivel armchair, £455 Available from Julia Jones, 01492 545013

Oak bench with under storage facility Available from MijMoj www., 01248 681469

Vintage style clock, Available from Bella Ivy 01948 663897

68 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

the circulation of air. Hopefully, then the plant will be able to produce nice strong healthy growth. When i am pruning for shape, or to reduce the size of the bush, the first thing i do is stand back and look at the plant from at least two angles. the most difficult thing is deciding where to start, what to do and where to prune to. i look at the plant to imagine what it may look like after pruning. Hopefully, one good well placed cut will set the scene for the whole of the rest of the job. at the end of the operation i hope that the plant will look fairly natural, and in some cases look as though i haven’t pruned it at all. there are some shrubs that i want to move, this is the ideal time. dig a trench around larger shrubs and then gently tease into the root ball with a garden fork until it is light enough to move. i use a sheet of polythene as a sledge to drag it to it’s new home. the wintertime is also the time of year when trees, shrubs and rose bushes are planted, so i will need to locate nurseries that can supply the plants we need and place orders. Preparations are also needed for the bedding plants. i check that we have ordered seeds, seedlings, compost, pots and trays. then i must plan when we sow each packet of seeds, or which week we will have seedlings delivered. We may sow some seeds at the end of January and others in april and all have to be ready for planting out in early June.

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An Honest Job Jeff Smith from WindowGeeks in Cheshire tells us all about window repairs and how they can save you money a window company with no salespeople! Saving money gets most people’s attention; whether it’s helping to reduce energy bills or providing a simple low-cost repair. According to Jeff, that means his company has no need to employ salespeople. ‘We offer the most cost-effective solution, and by some distance. And that makes it a very easy decision for our customers,’ he says. ‘There’s no pressure sales from us because there’s no viable alternative unless you want to spend 10 or 20 times more’ WindowGeeks doesn’t impose credit card charges, and there’s no minimum order value either. All its glass is guaranteed for ten years. Also, they now offer a free home health check to diagnose any hidden problems.


onesty and double-glazing firms haven’t always been the most natural bedfellows, but Cheshirebased WindowGeeks are going against the grain… Ripping up the salesman’s rulebook, WindowGeeks, who have ‘Local Geeks’ across the county as well as in north Wales and west Midlands, has made a pledge to supply customers with what they need, and nothing more. Hundreds of homes and businesses throughout the region and thousands more across the nation will attest to its integrity. ‘Much of our business comes from existing customers telling all their friends and family about us,’ says WindowGeeks’ founder and managing director, Jeff Smith. ‘It’s the best endorsement you can get and one we’ve earned by being totally transparent. Customers know exactly what to expect with us too. If a part needs replacing and it costs just £45 including labour, then that’s what they’ll pay. Most companies aren’t interested in those sorts of jobs. And, sadly, there are plenty out there who will coerce people into spending a small fortune on new windows and doors that they don’t actually need!’

if not thousands of pounds, lower than expected. ‘People still expect the worst, though,’ says Jeff. ‘It’s a bit like taking your car to the garage when you aren’t mechanically-minded. We naturally worry about the unknown and steel ourselves for lots of hidden costs and I’m sure that’s why customers are suspicious when we tell them our quotes are totally free. They think there’s going to be an unexpected charge when we turn up! That’s never

‘It’s the best endorsement you can get’

specialising in repairs WindowGeeks specialises in repairs – they’ll replace just the broken parts, make good what can be fixed, and leave customers with a bill hundreds,

stay warm for less this winter

going to happen, but people are still surprised when we keep our promises.’

local geeks Based in Cheshire, WindowGeeks has now expanded nationwide, employing skilled service engineers to run its local operations. So, while customers’ first contact with the brand might be its call centre, all surveys and installation are handled by ‘Local Geeks’. Call WindowGeeks on 0800 5118 007, or go online and visit their website at

These ‘Geeks’ don’t just fix windows – WindowGeeks are called out to mend doors and conservatories too. And at this time of year, with many homeowners battling draughts and rising energy bills, WindowGeeks finds its low-cost service is in high demand. ‘Replacing misted up or broken glass is only a small part of what we do,’ says Jeff. ‘In the winter we change a fair amount of faulty seals, helping our customers keep the warmth they’re paying for inside. And, with the cold weather playing havoc with their hardware too, we’re kept busy freeing up lots of jammed door handles, windows and locks. We’ve worked on dozens of conservatories lately and perhaps that’s unsurprising, considering they feature more glass, handles and seals than any other room in the home.’

70 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014


Cambrian Guest House Berwyn Street, Llangollen 01978 861418 Cambrian House was built in the early 1800’s as a coaching inn and now offers various en-suite rooms, including Four posters, with Room Only, B & B and DBB packages available We are open all year. Locked off-street car park. Free Wifi.

BEEHIVE RESTAURANT r Winne l a r u R f o f the o t Retrea 2013 Year

Open for breakfast and dinner Ful ly and, from early February Lice nsed 2014, Sunday Lunches

Come and try our new restaurant with an all new menu including gluten-free recipes.

The Cambrian Guest House, Llangollen We visit The Beehive Restaurant at the Cambrian Guest House for a wheat and gluten-free treat!


oger Honey, owner, manager and chef says: ‘It’s been six months since we launched the restaurant, having run Cambrian as purely a guest house until then. The idea of making The Beehive a restaurant with wheat and gluten free options came from my friend, who told me she suffered from coeliac disease and had to avoid any products with these ingredients. We visited a coeliac restaurant together, and I was surprised at the range of ingredients now available. A bit of research discovered that 1 in 10 people in the UK have a total intolerance to wheat and gluten – and an unbelievable 9 in 10 have some kind of reaction, for example feeling bloated after eating wheat or gluten. ‘As we developed the menu, it was surprising to us to see just how many ingredients contain gluten – glacier cherries for example! So we have found suppliers and created a menu that appeals to everyone.’

Friendly, home-Cooked Fare

Mellington Hall Hotel is a 19th Century Victorian Gothic Mansion, a country house hotel and top wedding venue in Powys, Mid Wales. The cares of the everyday world simply fade into insignificance as you turn into the driveway and make your way through the 280 acres of landscaped grounds, with the ancient earthwork of Offa’s Dyke visible on your right hand side. Whatever the reason for your visit, Mellington Hall Hotel will meet and surpass your expectations. The following pages attempt to show just a few of the reasons why.

Looking at the menu, we find soup of the day served with a fresh roll, a bruschetta, salmon parcel with puff pastry, bread and butter pudding – all gluten and wheat free. Being in a festive mood pre-Christmas, we opt for the turkey roast and Beehive gammon. Both come served with roast potatoes, steamed vegetables and a delicious (gluten free) gravy. The turkey in particular is very nicely done, tasty and moist slices of breast half as big as the plate! Roger joins us between courses and when we mention how the food is unpretentious, just well done homecooked fare, he says: ‘Oh that’s great to hear! For us now, the Beehive is all about showing people that we serve good food.’ Putting more gluten and wheat free ingredients to the test, we decide to try apple pie and custard for dessert – and we’re not disappointed. The pastry is lighter, in fact, than you often find with wheat flour. Roger says: ‘Our plans at Cambrian House this year are to expand the lounge bar into a cosy room to sit with a glass of wine. As the B&B part of our business keeps improving, we want to offer our guests and the general public the opportunity to sample our good home-cooked food and wide range of fine wines.’ y

Cambrian Guesthouse and Beehive restaurant Berwyn Street, llangollen, ll20 8nB www.cambrianhouse. or 01978 861418

01588 620456 Mellington | Churchstoke | Powys | SY15 6HX

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Call David on: 01244 371445

01948 668100

“The best range of pet accessories in the area!” Why not pay us a visit to see for yourself! Call in to our BRAND NEW SHOP and pick up a FREE GIFT* for Fido or Fluffy.

Bradeley Green Farm, Tarporley Road, Whitchurch, Shropshire. SY13 4HD. (off A49) *Minimum spend £20.00, gift chosen by petcetera. Offer ends 31/01/14

Glyndwr Plants Great choice of autumn and winter shrubs and perennials in full colour ready for planting. Range of seasonal plants for hanging baskets and tubs.There is still time to plant tulips for late spring colour. Time to plant bare rooted hedging, ornamental trees, fruit trees and soft fruit bushes call to discuss our range.

Coffee Shop 01490 413688 | Garden Centre 01490 413313 The centre is on the A5104, half a mile out of Corwen.

Antifreeze dangers OSwEStry VEtErInArIAn LUcy tUbbS, frOm PArk ISSA VEtS, tELLS US AbOUt thE dAngErS POSEd tO PEtS And wILd AnImALS by AntIfrEEzE It’s 2014 already! I hope everyone had a nice christmas and is looking forward to the coming year. happy 2014 from all of us at Park Issa and new foundry Vets! hopefully spring will soon be on the way, but whilst it’s still cold and wintery many people are still using antifreeze in their cars but some also use it in their gardens to stop ponds and water features from freezing. Antifreeze tastes sweet to cats and other animals and unfortunately we see the sad consequences of this far too often at the practice because antifreeze is also very toxic to any animals that drink it or lick it off their paws or fur.

Accidental poisoning Every year we see many accidental poisonings due to spills or leaks from containers or from cars leaking water coolant, and very sadly, there are also occasional episodes that we suspect may be deliberate poisonings. If you suspect that your animal has come into contact with antifreeze then it is vital to get it checked by your vet immediately because survival rates are greatly increased by immediate treatment. the symptoms of antifreeze poisoning include vomiting, lack of co-ordination, sleepiness, seizures, thirst and increased urination. these can occur as quickly as 30 minutes after ingestion, but may take up to 3 days to develop as the kidneys are poisoned and stop working. by this stage, it is often too late to save the animal and we have to make the very sad decision to end their suffering and put them to sleep. As you can see, prevention or very early treatment is vital. to reduce the chance of your pet or other animals coming into contact with antifreeze, always keep it clearly labelled in a sturdy, sealed container out of reach of pets, children and their environment. make regular checks of your car to make sure it isn’t leaking any water coolant and take care to dispose of used antifreeze and water coolant safely. Also, wipe up any spills immediately, no matter how small, and never use antifreeze in your garden water features because it can kill cats and it doesn’t do wild birds any favours either. hopefully if more people are aware of the problem then we’ll be able to reduce the number of animals that we see with this horrible poisoning.

About Lucy...

Lucy graduated from Edinburgh University in 2007 and has worked as a vet with Park Issa Vets ever since. She works at both the Oswestry and Johnstown branches and does a mixture of small animal and farm work. Visit for more information about Park Issa Vets, call 01691 670067 for the Oswestry branch, or 01978 845472 for the Johnstown branch.


Vets Wildlife Taking care of your furry friends in the New Year!

Furry Festivities After nearly 160 years in business

Cheshire Wildlife Trust Events

Whitchurch-based animal health supplies firm Osmonds played Santa Paws with three days of festive fun for l Bickley Hall Farm Garden cluB BiCklEy HAll FArm furry friends old and new to celebrate 5TH JAnuAry, 10:30Am – 3pm the opening of the family company’s Join conservation officer Sue Tatman to help newly refurbished shop, Petcetera. maintain the gardens at the Cheshire Wildlife Osmonds, the animal health product Trust’s headquarters. The wildlife-friendly garden supplier, was established in 1854 and is maintained by hard-working volunteers who continues to be a pioneer in the field meet once a month. As well as the main garden, of animal nutrition and veterinary there is also a productive kitchen garden from supplies, with Petcetera specialising in which volunteers can take home ripe, fresh fruit and vegetables. the world of dog grooming and showing products. ‘The shop will now have its l StampinG out invaSive SpecieS own display area dedicated to champion THornTon Wood dogs including grooming products, tables and dryers,’ says Heather Wilson of Osmonds. ‘Along with 5TH JAnuAry, 9:30Am – 4pm essentials such as brushes, shampoos, collars and leads, customers will also find specialist nutritional Help to remove non-native invasive species from supplements, colognes, dental care products and training aids alongside the introduction of a range of Thornton Wood. In the southern tip of the wood dog and cat foods including Lily’s Kitchen, James Wellbeloved, Arden Grange, volunteers will be grubbing up the last of beech Skinners and a range of Natural Raw frozen foods.’ saplings and making inroads into the removal of You can visit Petcetera in Bradley Gree, Tarporley Road, Whitchurch variegated yellow archangel, both of which threaten native ground flora. between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Saturday and between 10am and 4pm did you knoW? on Sundays. For more information and to see a range of their products, A dog’s nose print l tHe State oF nature: cHallenGeS visit

is as unique as a human’s finger print and can be used to identify individual pooches!

Very Important Pooch! Sharon Lewis of Greyhound Rescue Wales,

husband Dave and of course, their greyhound Adam Lewis recently went to Llandudno town hall to meet the mayor and accept a cheque for £200 towards the work of the charity. The trio were invited to the town hall after Sharon invited the mayor of Llandudno Gary Burchett to the Great Greyhound Sunday, an event held in the summer by Greyhound Rescue Wales. Following this, Gary promised to donate to the charity from the mayor’s fund and extended the invitation to the mayor’s parlour to receive the cheque. Shortly after, a formal invitation was received, confirming that Adam Lewis would almost certainly be the first greyhound to step foot (or paw!) in the mayor’s parlour. ‘Adam Lewis was on his best behaviour as always,’ says Sharon. ‘Some of the councillors even gave him treats.’ Greyhound Recue Wales have recently purchased a property to turn into a sanctuary for their many rescue dogs. ‘This money will definitely be put to good use,’ says Sharon. ‘Everyone involved in the charity is grateful for all the support that the Llandudno town council has given us.’ Find out more about Greyhound Rescue Wales at www. or call 0300 0123 999.

Cute Pets!

lEFT:‘Buster’, six weeks old, from the Wrexham Cat Rescue Centre. middlE: ‘Snickers’, two years old, supporting the Age UK’s Big Knit. riGHT: ‘Dougal’, six years old, playing fetch.

and opportunitieS For your local WildliFe truSt, HEsWAll HAll 10TH JAnuAry, 7:30pm – 9pm A Wirral Group illustrated talk. Cheshire Wildlife Trust’s chief executive, Charlotte Harris, will be giving an illustrated talk on the state of nature.

l keepinG tHe HedGeroWS in trim, nEW FErry BuTTErFly pArk 12TH JAnuAry, 9:30Am – 4pm Lend a hand as part of a team of volunteers to carry out essential hedge maintenance, including trimming, maintaining the diversity of shrubs and collecting hedge stakes. l a niGHt on tHe tileS: nocturnal noteS oF a naturaliSt’S year nAnTWiCH mETHodisT CHurCH 15TH JAnuAry, 8pm – 9:30pm A humorous talk by ecologist and environmental educator Jeff Clarke, a well known speaker on all aspects of wildlife and biodiversity. Listen to the ramblings of a nocturnal naturalist who will reveal just what goes bump in the night. He will describe a series of adventures and misadventures that brings to life the wildlife of the small hours. All laced with a liberal dose of humour. Find out more about cheshire Wildlife trust and see more events go online to www.

sHoW us your CuTE pETs! send us a picture of your favourite pet to and we’ll publish them in the next issue!

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 75

Acorn Antiques & Collectables Coffee Shop

All day Breakfasts, Sandwiches, Home made Cakes and Lunches


Wide range of mantle, grandfather and other vintage clocks and watches

Vintage Clothing


Wide range of Victorian and Edwardian pieces


Retro, Modern and Vintage


Stand out from the crowd in our vintage line

Vast range of antique and modern on display

Art Gallery

Designer Clothing

Browse our fine selection of paintings

Second hand designer clothing agency ‘Sally’s Room’ now open!

Two floors to Browse plus ‘Berwyn Books’ fully stocked library!

Acorn Antiques Mold Road, Gwersyllt LL11 4AF

We are OPEN 7 days 10am - 5pm.


Two Meals for £8.00

(incl. drinks) on presentation of this voucher.

e n a J y t n Au

(not one to complain... Hello again, dear Tarty Tarty readers!


appy New Year, one and all! Well I’ve had an interesting time today, I’ve been to the January sales and bought myself a nice pair of slacks, a mug tree and Jamie Oliver’s latest cookery book. Apparently, his polenta with parmesan is to dine for. My grandmother, the formidable Nellie Evans, was well known for her culinary prowess, but she guarded her creations jealously, even taking her prune crumble recipe with her to the grave. ‘Be reasonable,’ I said to her on her deathbed. ‘You don’t need it anymore,’ but no, she refused to relinquish her secret and it died with her. I was inconsolable when she passed on. I loved that crumble, but that’s life I suppose. I popped into the hairdresser’s on my way home. I know that, for many women, this is considered a treat but it leaves me quite unmoved. The magazines are out of date, the coffee is cheap and the dratted girl always insists on talking to me. ‘Are you going somewhere special tonight?’ ‘Did you have a nice Christmas?’ It’s all quite unnecessary. Today she even had the television blaring, showing two young men coming to blows over an eternity test! Now, I’m not one to complain, as you all know, but I don’t believe that Edison invented the television for ‘reality’ shows. No, it was meant to educate and entertain, not babysit a hideous assortment of grimy ne’er-dowells, youngsters with questionable morals, and insect-munching beauty queens. And why are there so many plastic surgery shows on? Surely all that hipposuction is bad for you? I made my excuses and left them to it. I shall buy a hat instead. A friend said something to me, which made me pause for thought. She said, Jane, you are never too old to try something new. This I know to be perfectly true – cousin Bron started walking five miles every day when she was 70! She’s 92 now… We have no idea where she is but I bet she’s as fit as a butcher’s apron. Bearing this in mind, I stepped up my computer study and I’ve discovered a rather interesting site on the intraweb. It’s called Facebook and I think it may become quite popular in time. If you’d like to join me there for the occasional chat or knitting tip then look me up – it’d be lovely to see you! Until next time,

Aunty Jane x



What have our favourite local celebrities have been up to? k OWAIN ARTHUR You’ve seen him in Holby City, New Tricks, The Palace and the award-winning film, The Patrol, and now the talented actor from Rhiwlas, near Bangor is drawing huge applause and critical acclaim in his return to West End hit, One Man, Two Guvnors. Arthur replaced cheeky chappie James Corden and, after a successful worldwide tour, is back where it all started – Theatre Royal, Haymarket. However, Arthur hadn’t always planned to take to the stage, in fact he trained to be a London cabbie before being cast, so it was almost a case of, ‘Where to, Guvnor?’ k ALEX JONES The permanently sunny Alex Jones, presenter of The One Show, proved she was much more than just a pretty face when she won £1000 for charity in a celebrity edition of ITV’s quiz show, The Chase. However, one of her proudest moments was when she and a group of young volunteers rode a rickshaw through Gloucestershire for the BBC’s Children in Need. The Welshborn presenter studied theatre, film and television at Aberystwyth University before landing a job as a researcher and despite some early setbacks is flying high!

k PAUL POTTS Larger-than-life tenor, Paul Potts, has come an extremely long way since winning the first season of ITV’s popular show, Britain’s Got Talent back in 2007, and in October, Simon Cowell’s company, Syco, made the story of the talented 43-year-old into a film. One Chance, starring James Corden (yes, him again!) in the lead role, chronicles the Potts story from unhappy childhood to working at a branch of Carphone Warehouse and living in Port Talbot. It stops at the point of his life-changing moment, so we don’t see much in the way of the talent show circus… but maybe that’s not such a bad thing!

k TERRY JONES They’ve not been dead, just resting. Monty Python is back after 24 long years away. It’s been a busy few months for all of them, not least local ‘boy’, Terry Jones, from Colwyn Bay. The 71-year-old comedian, screenwriter, actor and author recently revealed that he married his Swedish partner, Anna Soderstrom in a low-key ceremony in London, attended by just five people, including their young daughter, Siri. Much has been made of the 41-year age difference between the couple, but he’s not losing any sleep over it! (Nudge, nudge, wink, wink. Know what I mean?) k KATIE PRICE The former glamour model left some fans kicking up a stink recently when her much-hyped appearance at a supermarket in Broughton left them disappointed. Price, formerly known as Jordan, arrived 30 minutes late at the promotion of her new perfume, ‘Kissable’, and left shortly after with her baby son, Jett without signing any bottles of the scent, which fans had been hoping for. She came out smelling of roses though as ‘Kissable’ proved a popular gift over Christmas, regardless of the Price!

k RICHARD AND ADAM The brothers from Holywell had a phenomenal 2013. Another successful act propelled by Britain’s Got Talent, their first album Impossible Dream spent four weeks at the top spot on the official album charts, propelling them into the realms of superstardom. Their Christmas album was also a huge success and a world away from their humble beginnings working in a sandwich shop. Famously devoted to their ‘nan’, the singing siblings remember the early days fondly, with Adam commenting recently, ‘I was the coffee man; Richard made the sandwiches!’ k JADE JONES Olympic champion Jade Jones has revealed how she became disillusioned with taekwondo less than a year after winning gold for Great Britain in 2012. Apparently, the 20 year old from Flintshire struggled for motivation after narrowly losing to Mayu Hamada at the World Championship quarter-finals – a fight she and her trainer had both been confident of winning. An injury added to the young athlete’s disenchantment and she admitted to ‘falling out of love’ with the sport. However, a change of attitude has since put her back on track and more determined than ever to qualify for the 2016 Rio Olympics. You go, girl!

k STEWART LEE The stand-up comedian, from Wellington, Shropshire, made his name in the mid1990s as one-half of the radio duo Lee and Herring, later co-writing and co-directing the mock Broadway hit Jerry Springer: The Opera. Now he is taking his clever brand of comedy touring the country, trialling material before the return of his BBC show, Vehicle. Lee’s tour, Stewart Lee’s Comedy Vehicle Much A-Stew About Nothing has been ruffling a few feathers (as usual) with his controversial subject topics including celebrity Tories, dog poo and UKIP, but he’s still good for a laugh as far as we’re concerned! The tour continues throughout the UK until February 2014, and tickets are available on his website at

Celebrity Stalker

Anthony Spark, from Connah’s Quay, was ‘over the moon’ to bump into Everton footballer, Leighton Baines, in Liverpool

Sarah McNaughton met comedian, Richard Blackwood, in Poole during a recent holiday

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 77

Thomas Sabo black feathered heart pendant, £219.00 available from Mococo

Pucker up! Get luscious lips just in time for Valentine’s Day with our pick of the best lip glosses from the high street

Too Faced Mood Swing lip gloss £14.50

Models Own lipgloss wand in Pink Wink £5.00

ChloBo gold and black sparkle necklace, £200.00 available from Mococo


Soap and Glory Sexy Mother Pucker in Half Naked £9.00

Benefit Pocket Pal £15.50


Estée Lauder Pure Colour lip gloss in Fuchsia Fantasy, £16.00


Fashion Events?


If you’re planning a fashion event in the next few months, get in touch at editorial@ or find us on Facebook

the public, so don’t miss this opportunity to see the best of vintage clothes and accessories around. h 12tH JANuAry tOp tAble JANuAry SAle New brIgHtON HerItAge CeNtre Do you need to de-clutter your life? Whether you have things to sell or just want to look around at what’s on offer, the Table Top January Sale is definitely worth a visit to pick up some bargains. h 26tH JANuAry CHeSter VINtAge FASHION FAIr CHeSter rACeCOurSe Over the past seven years, the Chester Vintage Fashion Fair has become a firm favourite with fashionable members of

h 1St FebruAry tHe weSt CHeSHIre VINtAge FAIr HOOle COmmuNIty HAll Full to bursting with stalls of eclectic, original and vintage items, there’s something for everyone to be found! h 2Nd FebruAry telFOrd’S beAuty, HOlIStIC ANd SpIrItuAl FAyre dAwley tOwN HAll Take a look at a fantastic range of products and services including makeup, nails, facials and reflexology to name but a few.

78 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Great winter fashion from a high street near you… Aztec tuxedo cardigan £79, textured sequin jumper £26, wet-look jeans £26, M & Co.

BEAUTY & FASHION Zip front skirt £30.00, Next

Barbara Lebek cardigan, £70, available from Jenevieve in Llangollen 01978 869210

Limited Edition pewter monk point boot £45.00, Marks & Spencer Twiggy for M&S Collection jacket, £69.00 Marks & Spencer Joseph Ribkoff panelled dress £249, 01248 372283

Cream and gold alpaca scarf £75 available from Make The Most Of Circles silver necklace and earrings £25 available from Make The Most Of www.

Lucia Weave shoes £99.00 Phase Eight

Cape £30, faux leather skirt £28, block heel ankle boots £45, Next Lucia clutch bag £49.00 Phase Eight

Metallic jumper dress, £39.00 M & Co.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 79


Yattar Fashion stories 3 of the best

Saving face

Whether it’s for day-to-day wear, or for a special occasion, a good foundation is a must-have. We’ve found some of the best on the high street to make sure that your skin looks flawless this party season Bare Minerals Get Started Kit, £49.00 If you’ve ever wanted to try mineral makeup, now’s your chance! This kit contains everything you need to get started, including primer, concealer, foundation, finishing powder and even brushes. Also included is a DVD to help you get the most from your new foundation and to show you how to get great coverage while feeling like you’re not wearing any makeup at all.

Benefit Some Kind-a Gorgeous, £24.50 Some Kinda-a Gorgeous is the number one selling liquid compact in the UK, and for good reason. The oil-free, cream to powder formula gives you a flawless complexion and smooths out your skin tone. The compact includes an application sponge and mirror, so you can touch up your look on the go.


MaC Pro Longwear SPF 10 Foundation £24.00 This long-wear foundation can stay put for up to 15 hours and stand up to any environment, including hot and humid conditions. With a huge variety of shades available in both warm and cool tones, you’ll be able to find something that matches your skin perfectly.

80 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014


Who is your favourite

©Calvin Klein

If you have a special occasion coming up, you no doubt want to dress to impress and Dresses at Julie’s in Shrewsbury certainly aren’t short of dresses that do just that. In the shop, you’ll find a dress for every occasion, from a simple classic frock to a stunning, glamorous red carpet number. ‘We have a great selection of exquisite gowns in a full range of sizes from 0 to 30 to buy and to hire,’ says owner, Julie Ireland. ‘We offer a personal, very friendly service and do our best to make sure that you’re shopping experience is a good one. We can also offer help with styles and colours.’ As well as helping you to find your perfect dress, Dresses at Julie’s also offer an alteration service and have plenty of accessories to help you finish off your outfit. Prom dresses for 2014 are already in stock at Dresses at Julie’s, with more stock to follow over the coming months. Dresses at Julie’s is located on Hills Lane in Shrewsbury. The shop is open from 10am to 5pm on Tuesdays, Wednesday and Fridays and from 9:30am to 4pm on Saturdays. Other appointment times are available on request. Find out more at or call 07510 260648 to make an appointment.



Mark Seliger/Details

Dresses for a special occasion


Best known for his role as Clark Kent/ Superman in Man of Steel, Henry Cavill was recently voted the word’s sexiest man in a poll by Glamour, beating Twilight star Robert Pattinson to the title.

You may know him from Marie Antoinette or from TV series, Once Upon a Time, but soon Jamie Dornan will be making pulses the world over race as he takes the role of Christian Grey in the movie adaptation of 50 Shades of Grey.

The right clothing for everyday and that special occasion

At So Chic we specialize in elegant occasion wear for Mother of the Bride, Mother of the Groom and Wedding guests. We make shopping for that special day an enjoyable experience in a relaxed environment, with friendly service and professional advice. LABELS INCLUDE: • IAN STUART • OLVIS LACE • CONDICI • ANN BALON • • PRESEN • MIRELA • MICHAEL H GOLD • PERSONAL CHOICE • • JOSEPH RIBKOFF • IRRESISTABLE • APANAGE • LUIS CIVIT •

ers of Three-times winn Wear Shop Best Occasional les and in North West Wa in 2011 national winners

NEW! mother of the bride range now available Visit us at 154 High Street, Bangor, Gwynedd LL57 1NU The right clothing for everyday and that special occasion

01248 372283 email:,

Shropshire’s Premier Dress Sales and Hire Company We sell & hire a range of stunning prom, cruise and ball dresses, as well as catering for other occasions such as black tie weddings, civil ceremonies, and private parties.

Opening times: Monday-Friday 10am - 5.30pm Saturday 9.30am - 5.30pm Evening appointments are also available.

Online shopping for the best in quality gifts, homeware, clothing, jewellery, furniture and artwork from independent sellers who take pride in what they design and make.

Call us now to arrange an appointment on

07510 260648 37 Hills Lane, Shrewsbury Shropshire SY1 1QU

**Prom dresses for 2014 now available**

01244 345954 Shop online at promoting creative enterprise

At Queen’s I learn to look at everything creatively

13th January 2014

Assessment Day

(For entry into Key Stages 1 and 2)

Entrance Examination

(for entry in to Senior School)

With exceptional results and a nurturing atmosphere, top grades across our ISI inspection, an impressive record with the best universities and a stimulating mix of extracurricular options, we are proud of all that The Queen’s School offers and achieves. But don’t take out word for it, some and find out for yourself at a Taster Session available on any school day. Call now to book...


Enjoy Limitless Learning

Discover a fresh approach to learning.

Scholarship day - Wednesday 19th February

The following scholarships will be available to apply for: • Academic • Sport • Creative Arts • Performing Arts

St David’s College continues to provide its students with a lifelong love of learning. With small class sizes, an unrivalled outdoor education programme and an extensive range of sports and activities on offer, our students gain the skills and confidence to succeed and reach their full potential. If you would like more information about our scholarship day and how you can apply contact the school today:

Call 01492 875 974 or visit St David’s College, Gloddaeth Hall, Llandudno LL30 1RD • Email:


Education News From sporting success to academic accolades! All the latest news and achievements from local schools

The Land of Ice and Fire

A group of 23 children and three teachers from Abberley Hall School recently headed off on an exciting trip to Iceland, known as the land of fire and ice thanks to its unique landscape that includes lava fields as well as mountains and glaciers. During their visit, the group of pupils and teachers visited a broad range of environments including, rivers and waterfalls, volcanoes, glaciers, coasts, hot springs, and the urban area of Reykjavik. ‘Our first full day started in the city of Reykjavik where we explored the old and the new parts of this fascinating capital, stopping at the largest church in the country, admiring its architecture,’ explains head of geography, Will Warwick. ‘We also visited the Thorsmork valley where there were glaciers, snowy peaks and crystal streams. The next day took us on a short ferry journey to the fantastic Westmann Islands. Here we found out all about the 1973 eruption and climbed to the crater rim of the volcano Eldfell. We also saw basalt columns much like at the Giant’s Causeway in Northern Ireland, and headed back to the UK with a lot of wonderful memories, experiences, stories, and most importantly photographs of the fantastic trip.’ Events at Worcester’s Abberley Hall School in 2014 include a spring term production of West Side Story and a sports tour of South Africa – make sure you watch this space! Find out more at or call 01299 896275

Kings of Maths

Junior school pupils at the King’s School in Chester were in for an exciting afternoon recently as the Maths Road Show took place, bringing a variety of maths puzzles and activities for the pupils to have a go at. The Maths Road Show is part of the school enrichment programme at King’s and involves a group of sixth form students studying A Level maths creating a range of exciting activities for the younger children. The Maths Road Show was first created by the Liverpool Mathematical Society who developed it by collecting around 100 puzzles for young visitors to solve. The mathematical activities and puzzles are displayed on coloured, laminated A3 baseboards, with associated equipment. Experience has shown that the activity is beneficial to all, including pupils with special needs. 11 plus entrance exams for the King’s Senior School, Chester will be held on Friday 24th January. You can arrange a tour of the school or find out more about admission by contacting admissions on 01244 689553 or You can find out more online at

The Future’s Bright

Fifty-seven primary school pupils recently embarked on a visit to the University of Manchester for a year six Raising Aspirations day. The visit was organised by the Marches School as part of a new initiative: The Marches Futures Award. Designed to ignite the aspirations of year six students, the award aims to encourage pupils to begin thinking about their ambitions for the future and to be inspired by the possibilities available to them. The initiative was launched as part of the Marches School’s 25th anniversary celebrations and the award gives feeder primary schools the opportunity to send up to seven pupils on the trip. Students who attended the trip to the University of Manchester learnt about university courses, took an interactive your of the campus with student ambassadors and a self-guided tour of the museum. ‘We experienced a packed programme with museum tours, campus exploration and one to one interrogations of the very helpful and enthusiastic student ambassadors who accompanied us throughout the day,’ says Helen Chapman, the year six teacher at Morda Primary School. ‘By the time we returned to Oswestry, many children were already planning their university career.’ ‘It was an amazing day,’ adds year six pupil, Kate Adams. ‘I had a great time! It has really got me thinking about which university I want to go to. It inspired me to be what I want to be and anything is possible.’ Find out more about the Marches School at

Arkwright engineers Nathan Bottomley and Jack Stewart (pictured), sixth form

students from Adams’ Grammar School in Newport, Shropshire have recently been awarded prestigious Arkwright Engineering Scholarships at a ceremony in London supported by the Institution of Engineering and Technology and BAE Systems. The Arkwright Scholarships support young people from across the UK who have the potential to be industry’s future leaders in engineering and technical design. During their sixth-form studies both Jack and Nathan will receive £600 to support their technical courses and will have access to a range of opportunities to learn more about engineering, such as mentoring and company visits. For more information about Adams School including school visits and admissions, go online and visit

s January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 83


A Walk on the Wild Side s

At the end of 2013, Rupert Hill, deputy head of land based study at Walford and North Shropshire College, visited Kasanka National Park in Zambia. During his visit, Rupert worked with the staff there to develop a programme of educational study tours designed to benefit animal management students in the UK. The new programme will help students to learn important skills, such as conservation of wildlife, national park management and identification of fauna and flora. Rupert also researched the costs and benefits involved in allowing the college to offer an all-inclusive study tour to second year animal management students. Students who embark on the tour will have the thrill of being in the presence of wild animals in their natural habitats. ‘Kasanka is a valuable conservation area with diverse flora and fauna, Looking for some including many endangered species, and is home to an exceptional work experience? variety of birdlife,’ says Rupert. ‘Educational visits will provide our if you’re a school pupil, or students with wonderful opportunities for learning and research in college or university student, you a real wilderness.’ To find out more about the animal management could get some work experience course at Walford and North Shropshire College call 01939 262100. at the Yattar Yattar office near To find out more about the college, visit wrexham. Just get in touch with Open Events at Walford and North Shropshire College: us on 01978 813035 or email Walford Campus – Saturday 8th February, 10am – 2pm editorial@yattaryattar. Oswestry Campus – Thursday 13th February, 5:30pm – 8pm Shipley Campus – Wednesday 26th February, 4pm – 7pm

Super Subs!

A team of year 13 business women, Siân Jones, Kate Pumphrey and Laura Mercer, all students at Moreton Hall in Weston Rhyn, Oswesty, has won Subway’s Design a Sub challenge held at The Pavilion in Birmingham in December. The team of year 13 students presented a Dragons’ Den style pitch to a panel of Subway brand experts who were ‘unanimous in their decision’ that the girls’ concept, Jack of all Flavours, was a clear winner. Their subs will be launched in Subway stores nationwide in February 2014. ‘All of these girls study Business Studies and, critically, were part of the school’s unique Moreton Enterprises team last year,’ explains Business Studies teacher, Karen Booth who supported the girls through the competition. ‘Moreton Enterprises is an in-house group of business run Senior school Spanish students from the Queens School by the girls, for the girls, which gives them an in Chester recently had the chance to experience the outstanding understanding of business. This has language, art and culture of Spain first-hand on a trip to been the starting point for many very successful Barcelona. Pupils from years eight and nine (pictured businesswomen, and it looks like these girls are set right, in front of Gaudi’s famous cathedral) began their to be part of that list in the future.’ trip in Montserrat, with its sacred basilica surrounded by Their pitch included detailed market research, mountains and beautiful landscapes, followed by a visit to a competitive analysis, an innovative product Poble Espanyol, an open-air museum full of quirky shops. concept, and detailed costings. ‘It has been a Over the next few days the group visited the Science fabulous experience,’ explained the girls. ‘We have Museum, one of the most famous in Europe, as well as thoroughly enjoyed every step of the process and the Catalunya F1 circuit, where girls had the opportunity can’t wait to see our products in the Subway stores to see F3 cars in action and to sit on the same seats as in the New Year.’ world-renowned drivers. Scholarship and entrance examinations for ‘Quite frankly in the 12 years of conducting trips in Moreton Hall will be held on January 15th (for Barcelona with schools from all over the UK, 11+ and 12+ entry) and January 22nd (for 13+ Queen’s students were simply the best in all areas; entry). Up to 100% scholarships and bursaries polite, considerate, well mannered, caring and can be awarded to outstanding mature,’ says Michael Chapman of Spanish Star who candidates. Contact the organised the activities. ‘The staff are exceptional registrar Sarah Hughes and the students clearly know that they are in the for details by emailing care of adults who are enthusiastic and energetic If you’re considering sending to registrar@ in all that they teach.’ your child to Moreton Hall or For more information about the Queen’s School, don’t miss the open day call on 01691 773671. for Moreton First (ages 3 to 11) School and the latest news, visit www.queens. Find out more about on Saturday 1st March. For the school at www. further information, contact

Spanish Walk

the registrar at registrar@

A pressing parking problem

A Night at the Movies

Powell Hall was recently the setting for a fantastic ‘Night at the Movies’ concert by the pupils of Sedbergh School – a celebration of music featured on the silver screen. The concert featured no fewer than 140 pupils. The concert was opened by the school’s orchestra, which played a selection of music from Gladiator, followed by performances by three of the school’s choirs. The singing included performances of Remembrances for Schindler’s List and Chopin’s Nocturne in

C# Minor, which featured in The Pianist. The first half of the concert was brought to a close by the school’s CCF Band. The band were making their first concert performance since the death of their long-serving bandmaster, Mr Alan Lewis, in the summer. The second half of the concert included performances by the soul band, the school’s percussion and guitar teachers, and the percussion group, who performed Jai Ho from Slumdog Millionaire. Find out more about Sebergh School and see more of the latest news at

How many cars can you fit into a car park? That was the question posed to Ruthin School sixth formers Arthur, Stephen, Uliana, Anh and Patrick at the engineering maths department at the University of Bristol. The team of sixth formers had to fit as many car parking spaces as possible in three differently shaped car parks. The most challenging shape was a circular car park and the Ruthin School team came up with an inventive solution using concentric circles with the places set out in each circle in a herringbone pattern. Out of the sixty submissions there was one winner and seven which were highly commended – which included Ruthin School’s team, who were rewarded with a fine glass trophy! Find out more about Ruthin School at or call 01824 702543.


84 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Preparatory School for children aged 3 to 13

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Double top!


The pupils and staff of Little Prestfelde and the middle school at Prestfelde School in Shrewsbury recently donned their best fancy dress to raise over £150 for Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity. The Dahl-icious dress-up day saw Oompa Loompas, a fabulous array of fantastic Mr Foxes, a wicked number of witches, plus a generous helping of Georges and a multitude of Matildas arrive at the school, along with a good showing of crocodiles, giraffes, birds, BFGs and of course, Twits! Roald Dahl’s Marvellous Children’s Charity helps seriously ill children and young people by providing nurses, equipment and support for families. Find out more about Prestfelde School at

Picture this Kara Chin, a

former student of the Queen’s School in Chester who is now studying art foundation at the City and Guilds of London Art School, has scooped a prize at the 17th National Open Art Exhibition. Kara won the Piran Strange Award for Young Artists for her etching, ‘Order’. To win, she beat off stiff competition – this year’s awards attracted the most entries in the history of the competition and this year’s judges included art critic Brian Sewell, Scottish painter Barbara Rae and gallerist Michael Hoppen. Kara was presented with her prize plus a cheque for £3,000 by Rolling Stone, Ronnie Wood at the prize-giving ceremony in London. Her winning artwork will now go on display at the Royal College of Art, London. ‘Kara is a very talented young artist and was a joy to teach,’ says Kara’s former art teacher, Alistair Tucker. ‘She is very passionate about art and dedicated completely to her work. She is probably one of the best students I have taught in 18 years. She is sure to go on to great things. We’re all very proud here at the school.’ For the latest news about Queen’s School, visit www.queens.

Pupils at Shrewsbury High School have reason to celebrate as not one, but two of their sporting teams have won championships without losing a single match! The double sporting success was achieved when the school’s under-14 and under-16 netball teams were both crowned county champions. The under-14 tournament was held at Shrewsbury High School’s sporting grounds on Crescent Lane, where the team defended strongly and won all their matches, beating Newport Girls’ High 10-1, Ellesmere 9-0, Thomas Telford School 10-1, William Brookes 7-3, Wrekin College 9-6 and Ludlow School 11-2. The following afternoon the High School’s U16 team travelled to Church Stretton School with equal success, beating Priory School 12-0, Wrekin College 5-3, Newport Girl’s High 8-4, Thomas Telford School 14-1 and Ludlow School 8-7. ‘A fantastic effort by all our girls meant that we performed strongly in both age ranges,’ says head of PE at Shrewsbury High School, Linda Royston. ‘Last year our under-14 girls won the championship and our under-16s were runners-up so it is truly pleasing that we have exceeded the high standard set last year.’ Find out more about Shrewsbury High School at or call the admissions officer, Sharon Jones on 01743 494038.

Simply the best!

Learners at the City of Wolverhampton College have proved they are among the best in the country after triumphing in a national skills competition. Engineering apprentices Alex Weston and Ricky Burmi and beauty student Sabrina Wootton scooped top prizes in the national finals of the WorldSkills UK competition at the NEC. Alex, who is an apprentice at the Michael Beetham Conservation Centre at RAF Museum Cosford scooped the silver award in the sheet metalwork category, with Ricky, an apprentice at Radshape Sheet Metal Ltd. in Birmingham winning bronze. Sabrina picked up a bronze award in the beauty therapy category. ‘We were all tasked with building a metal chimenea and had just 20 hours to build it,’ explained Alex. ‘We were judged on the dimensions, measurements as well as the quality and the finish of our work. I am delighted to have achieved second place after competing against other highly skilled apprentices from across the country. Working in front of an audience at the show in a new environment was a little daunting to begin with but it was a fantastic experience.’ You can find out more about the City of Wolverhampton College on their website at

A busy New Year

This year, St David’s College in Llandudno is looking forward to another jam packed year of events, trips and expeditions. February will be especially busy. The history and drama departments have organised a threeday trip to London that promises to be both fun and educational. Students will visit the Tower of London, attend theatre performances in London’s West End, discover the gruesome history of medicine and surgery at the Old Operating Theatre Museum and take the chilling Jack the Ripper walking tour. A year full of adventure expeditions will start with a ski trip to Italy at the end of February. The week-long trip will take place in Passo Tonale in the Cal di Sole region of the Italian Dolomites. With ski training available as a weekly activity at St David’s College the trip will give students the chance to test their skills on some of Europe’s best ski and snowboarding slopes. St David’s annual scholarship day will be taking place on Wednesday 19th February with four scholarships available in academia, sport, creative arts and visual arts. Contact the school for more information on 01492 875974 or go online to the website at www. stdavidscollege.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 87

Poet’s Corner A new Poet’s Corner, We’re over the moon! And our readers’ own poetry will makes us swoon! If you’re a poetry fan, Write as fast as you can We’d sure love to hear from you soon.

Do you want to appear in Poet’s Corner? Send your poems to editorial@

You’re With Me Still

My darling wife I feel your presence in the sky above, I know you’re there in spirit twinkling death won’t stop our love. For we are truly close entwined locked in love’s embrace with open arms and loving thoughts, I hope to see your face. So when a cloud goes tumbling by it seems to hide my mate who’s waiting for me to come by and join her through that gate. By Brian Stone

A New Love

The clothes you wear are somewhat strange and they don’t really flatter but you could wear a sack or two and it just would not matter. For your person is the thing that captured this sweet heart I’m just in rapture, love doth sing from you I just can’t part. You’re dynamite to me you see you make my body shudder your sexy walk and movement too controls my manly mudder. You bubble forth so clean and bright a new pin with such glitter those glistening eyes and soft warm lips just make my heart so twitter. I have to stay with you right now and always, for all time for I do love you – always will forever to be mine. By Brian Stone

Can’t Cook, Won’t Cook

I searched the whole of Shrewsbury, All over Wrexham Town, I got the bus to Oswestry, How I was up and down. And all because I’ve never liked To stay at home and bake, I even went to Chester To look for Chester Cake. But I had to buy some currants, Mix with bread and sugar too, And shove it in the oven, Just like Mother used to do. By Maureen JoneS

Night Through Frosted Glass

Stars struggle through a cowl of mist. The pale light sprawls on steps of moon-marble: cold, hard slabs in a palette of blue-grey tones. For the lack of the sun, insect angels nibble neon night-lights, all luminous and bright, humming day’s last rites in hushed, shushed voices. The midnight rush. Later shattered as people gush into the streets and disturb the fragile peace. Heavy feet and heavy light corrupt virginal sheets of frost, and destroy the glass silence. By eMMa Joy anderSon

88 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

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Yattar Books

If you are a local author and would like to be featured in Yattar Books, why not call: (01978) 813035 or email: local Author Review

Big Men’s Boots emily barroso

Big Men’s Boots (The Way) is book one of a trilogy relating the journey of faith by an ordinary Welsh boy with an extraordinary prophetic gift – a gift that, over the course of his life, will take him across the world as he seeks the truth that ultimately lies within. Inspired by the supernatural events that took place during the Welsh Revival of 1904/5, this is a wildly adventurous book on several levels. Set amongst the slate quarrying community, during a time of great political and social unrest, the revival rocks the mountain community and gives birth to the preternatural. As the son of Welsh Revivalists, Owen Evans was raised to expect miracles. Steeped in the Biblical language and the songs of the chapels, he has been decoding dreams since he was a young child. However, when he begins to have visions and encounters with angels, and glimpses into The Kingdom of Darkness as well as The Kingdom of Light, he battles between his desire for a normal life and the attraction to his prophetic calling. Following instruction from local seer prophet, Anna (who can see into the spiritual realms, and has been predicting local events for decades), Owen learns that he must master the spiritual skills to defy the trickery of darkness in order to embrace his exceptional gift. This is a well-plotted picture of Welsh social, political and spiritual history related in the gripping, page turning style we first saw in the author’s debut novel, After the Rains. Barroso’s three-dimensional characters and their phenomenal experiences will stay with you long after you have closed the book. Happily, the next one is scheduled to be released next year! Big Men’s Boots is published by Hillman Publishing and is available in all good bookshops as well as online and at a discount through www.

Meet the Author

Given she has a 17-year-old, a 4-year-old, a 2-year-old and an 8-month-old, Emily can be forgiven for being, as she puts it, ‘Frazzled, sleep deprived and, quite possibly mad!’ adding, ‘These factors go a long way to explain my decision to write a trilogy! I’m also in the process of setting up a publishing company with my husband, Simon, and writing my blog on my website.’ From early next year, Emily is hoping to tour Welsh libraries and bookshops to talk about and sign copies of Big Men’s Boots. The first of these dates is likely to take place in Penrhyn Bay, north Wales. If you would like more information on this and other events, visit her website or send her an email. She loves getting feedback from readers and is contactable at

90 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Coedpoeth Memories

Members of the coedpoeth history Society, near Wrexham, have produced a fascinating book about the history of the village. the book covers many centuries and includes tales of coedpoeth and its characters over the years. Memories of Coedpoeth features the personal memories of residents, as well as the stories of their family, going back generations. those interested in history will be enthralled with tales during the war years and about the development of the village, all accompanied by pictures from the time. the book was the brainchild of the late Oswald davies, who founded the history society 10 years ago and carried out much of the research that made the book possible. his work, along with the hard work of many others involved has created a book well worth a read if you want to learn more about the local area. Get your copy of Coedpoeth Memories from Plas Pentwyn in Coedpoeth for £19.95. Copies are also available from the Coedpoeth History Society treasurer, Mrs Beatrix Williams – contact her on 01978 755026.

Keeping it Local

Llangollen is already known both locally and further afield as a historic town and popular tourist destination, but the many groups, clubs and societies of the town are perhaps less well known. Llangollen Community captures a unique record of the people of Llangollen and their activities in 90 portraits that show how rich and varied life in the town is. ‘This project not only records for posterity a snapshot in time of the town’s community but also reminds us of the breadth of our interests and the staying power of our societies,’ said Jon Haddy, mayor of Llangollen. Llangollen Community was written by Andrew Gale and Simon Collinge. Andrew is a professional photographer and film-maker based in Llangollen, but working nationwide, while Simon has over 40 years media production experience. Andrew and Simon used dramatic lighting techniques inspired by Rembrandt and Franz Hals’ portraits to photograph Llangollen’s clubs, groups and societies. Get your copy from www.llangollencommunity. or you can buy the book locally from Courtyard Books, Gales, Llangollen Museum and the Tourist Information Centre, all in Llangollen.

Book Events

l Until SatUrday 8th FebrUary The National Library of Wales Writers of Wales: The Oxford Book of Welsh Verse and John Cowper Powys A look at the history of The Oxford Book of Welsh Verse which was published 50 years ago, and the varied reaction Sir Thomas Parry’s notable anthology received; an anthology which is still widely used in schools and universities across Wales. rday 15th March l Until SatUrday The National Library of Wales Welsh Icons United A rare opportunity to see the most important Medieval Welsh manuscripts brought together under one roof. l SatUrday 1St FebrUary Waterstone’s in Stockport Meet Mandasue Heller The best-selling Manchesterbased crime author Mandasue Heller will be making a rare appearance to sign copies of her new novel, Respect. M l WedS 12th FebrUary, 7pM The Dancehouse, Manchester will be hosting An Evening with Armistead Maupin Maupin returns to Manchester for this special event when he’ll be discussing The Days of Anna Madrigal, the suspenseful, comic and touching ninth novel in the much-loved Tales of the City series.

Winter reads l ThE LuMinAriES, ElEAnor CAtton In1866, a young man, Edinburgh-born Walter Moody, arrives in New Zealand, determined to make his fortune by working in the goldfields. However, soon after his arrival on that stormy night, he finds himself in a room where a dozen men are discussing a series of strange events: the disappearance of a wealthy man, a drugged prostitute with a death wish, and the discovery of a vast amount of money. Against his will, Moody is gradually and inexplicably involved in the mystery as his fate is sealed. Evoking vibrant and believable mid-nineteenth-century scenes perfectly, The Luminaries is a well-researched, psychologically tense and clever page-turner. However, it is not an easy read – it weighs in at over 800 pages and the pace is somewhat slow – but it’s definitely worth hanging on in there until its extremely satisfying conclusion, and it’s easy to see why it was voted winner of the 2013 Man Booker Prize and Canada’s Governor General’s Literary Award. H H H l MidnighT in PEking, PAul FrEnCh This shocking tale, made more so because it is true, tells the story of young Pamela Werner, the daughter of a former British Consul, whose body was found under a supposedly haunted watchtower in Peking in 1937. The body was barely identifiable; her face slashed and her heart cut out. The murder remained a mystery until British author and historian, Paul French, intrigued by the story, was inspired by case files to research it. French tells an eerie story from an underworld of narcotics, perversion and paranoia with Chinese-British detectives and Pamela’s grieving family determined to discover the truth behind the crime that shocked a nation. The result is a lurid, page-turning account of a girl with a secret life, a bungled police investigation, ancient fox ghosts and a fascinating insight into a fascinating country. H H H l ThE SErVEr, tim PArks Beth Marriot, a bright and beautiful young woman has joined a group of people in a Buddhist retreat where the aim is to escape the modern world completely. Sexual relationships are strictly forbidden at the Dasgupta Institute, as are writing, reading and the analysis of the self but Beth settles in immediately – this environment is perfect for her to escape her dark past. However, when she finds an illicit diary hidden away in the men’s quarters, her rebellious nature comes to the fore and her behaviour threatens to destroy the peace of the temple. Although The Server is certainly an intriguing read, the narrative is let down slightly by Parks’ predictable scenes and characterisation of his leading men and women. However, the storyline is original and cleverly thought out and the final scenes are guaranteed to stay with the reader for quite some time. H H l MAinE, J. CourtnEy sulliVAn In Sullivan’s second novel, three generations of Kelleher women – misunderstood alcoholic Kathleen, heavily pregnant Maggie, unfulfilled Anne Marie and Alice, the matriarch at the centre of the story, gather in the family’s holiday home in Maine one summer. Although they are very different people, with nothing in common apart from their DNA, they discover family secrets waiting to be unearthed and hard yet necessary truths to be told. Sullivan writes with great warmth and humour, and her wickedlydrawn observations of family life are as close to the bone as you are likely to find within a book. Her characters, although flawed, are likeable and even the childish sibling rivalry, underlying obsessions and the large helpings of Catholic guilt take nothing from the overall entertainment of the tale. H H H H l My LifE, DAViD JAson This long-awaited autobiography by one of Britain’s most loved national treasures and actors is a must for all fans. Starting at the beginning, it tells how Jason, realising that his vocation lay in acting, turned his back on a career as an electrician and found himself working with Britain’s comedy cream in the 1960s and ‘70s. A hugely entertaining and painfully honest read, My Life goes behind the scenes during the Porridge years and gives the reader a fascinating insight into life during Open All Hours. The most eagerly awaited section though must surely be in the early 80s when, resplendent in sheepskin jacket, thick gold chain and jaunty flat cap, David Jason became Derek ‘Del Boy’ Trotter and captured the nation’s hearts as the most loveable rogue to ever appear on our TV sets. The story, of course, doesn’t end there – his award-winning stint as detective Jack Frost, and glorious portrayal as Pop Larkin in the Darling Buds of May, as well as the numerous characters brought to life by his voiceover work is documented, as are little-known facts about his private life. This is a riveting read and well worth the money. H H H H H

Calling local writers!

Valerie Westfield, a high school English teacher and sessional university lecturer is hosting a writers’ circle coffee morning in Mann Christian Book and Coffee Shop, Wrexham, in January. Valerie began her quest for a writers’ circle some time ago as she is in the process of writing a cook book. She decided to plan this coffee morning in the hope that like-minded people would want to get together for a coffee and chat. Valerie plans to bring the unique tastes of Egypt to north Wales and Cheshire with her new book and with her culinary cooking courses, part of her new venture, Cook like An Egyptian. If you would like to find out more about the writers’ circle coffee morning or Cook like An Egyptian, call Valerie on 01978 810423 or 07774 796508.

teen reads l ThE iSobEL JournAL isobEl hArroP Subtitled Just a Northern Girl From Where Nothing Really Happens, this debut novel, penned beautifully by 18-year-old student, Isobel Harrop, offers the reader a vivid snapshot of contemporary teenage life through sketches, quirky doodles, ticket stubs, photographs and musings. Divided into three central yet seemingly random themes – ‘Love’, ‘Friends, Art and Otters’ and ‘Me’ – Harrop’s hilarious narrative style and slightly whimsical yet profound observations on life in general are presented in a fresh and charming style, guaranteed to resonate soundly with young adults. The Isobel Journal is a perfect combination of laugh out loud humour and heartbreaking sensitivity, and Isobel herself is definitely an author to watch out for in the future! H H H H l hitlEr’s AngEl WilliAm osbornE Hitler’s Angel tells the thrilling story of two teenage refugees, Otto and Leni, who live in England after having fled the Nazis. However, their security is short-lived as they find themselves returning to Germany to embark on a secret operation codenamed Wolfsangel. Dropped behind enemy lines, their mission is to rescue a girl from a remote Benedictine convent in Bavaria and escort her back to Britain – it seems she has a mysterious hold over Adolf Hitler, and Winston Churchill and his government are hoping that she may be able to bring about his downfall. This is a truly compelling World War II story, with excitement, adventure and drama in equal amounts, although parts are somewhat gory! H H H

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 91

Vaccinations Myths & Facts

By ReBecca HugHes oF companion caRe Vets


accinations are a subject of much debate and there are many conflicting ideas on vaccination advice in pets. I have often heard it said that vets are over vaccinating and that we are just doing it for the money. I have also heard it said that over vaccinating can cause other illnesses in pets. The consequences of not vaccinating are far worse. I have seen many cats with leukaemia, puppies dying a long slow death from contracting parvo-virus, kittens dying painfully with enteritis. I have even treated old un-vaccinated dogs for parvovirus. It’s devastating for the owner and for the veterinary staff involved in trying to save these poor animals. In dogs we vaccinate against distemper, parvovirus, hepatitis, flu, and leptospirosis. We used to vaccinate yearly for all r all Consultation fo s! of these, but in recent years the er ad re r tta Yattar Ya vaccine companies have produced ttar Just mention Ya g. guidelines stating that immunity will okin last longer and so we only need to Yattar when bo tions vaccinate every three years except ra st gi re w (For ne rget! for leptospirosis. We must continue to only). Don’t fo vaccinate against leptospirosis on a yearly basis, though there is now a new vaccine that covers more strains of the disease. Call the surgery for more details on getting your dog up to speed with a much better level of protection. Leptospirosis is a severe life threatening disease and exposure can be very difficult to avoid, especially in those breeds that like to splosh about in the water. Doggy flu (or parainfluenza) is best protected against by the kennel cough vaccine which is also yearly. Your dog does not need to go to kennels to pick up this respiratory infection – exposure to dogs incubating the disease will put your dog at risk. Cats we vaccinate yearly against flu, enteritis and leukaemia. Rabbits we vaccinate yearly against myxomatosis and VHD. Both are serious deadly diseases.


Prevention better than cure You may hear people say that we never see any of these diseases. And indeed, I have never come across a case of distemper in my career. But this is due to vaccination – if we never vaccinated it would be fairly prevalent. We do see a lot of the diseases that we vaccinate against – highly infectious diseases that are impossible to eliminate from the environment and the animal population. Vaccines work by stimulating the immune system to make antibodies against the diseases we are trying to avoid. If an animal still gets sick even after vaccinating, it usually means that the immune system never made enough anti-bodies in response to the vaccine. y

About Rebecca

Rebecca graduated from Liverpool University in 2001 and has worked in small animal practice for 12 years. She is a Joint Venture Partner at Companion Care Vets and has a keen interest in surgery. When not working, she can be found out with her dogs, or riding her bike in the Welsh hills. Companion Care Vets, Inside Pets at Home, Unit 2, Border Retail Park, Holt Road, Wrexham LL13 8NG. Visit for more information or contact 01978 352499. You can also find them on Facebook – just search ‘Companion Care Vets Wrexham Holt Road’.


corner Some great ideas for fun activities with kids…!

Eat Up, Emlyn!

How can a tiny baby grow into a strong, powerful Welsh rugby player? Feed him Nain’s cawl, of course! While his brother is big and strong and his dad plays rugby for Wales, Emlyn just keeps getting smaller, all because he won’t eat his dinner. His worried mum takes Emlyn to see Nain. Nain’s cawl (a traditional Welsh soup) is full of good ingredients and lots of love, but will she succeed in getting Emlyn to actually eat it? Eat Up, Emlyn! was written and illustrated by Angela Morris. While originally from Burry Port in Carmarthenshire, Angela moved up to north Wales in 1975 to teach in primary schools and now lives in Rhos near Wrexham. While she has illustrated work for other people in the past, Eat Up, Emlyn! is the first of her books to be published. A Welsh language version of the book, Cawl Mam-gu, is also available. Angela was inspired to write the story as her own grandchild, like Emlyn, didn’t seem to be very interested in food. Eat Up, Emlyn! is available from most good bookshops and online retailers. DID YOU KNOW... It is thought that over 60% of children have an imaginary friend or companion at some point in their lives

Farewell, Mr Yolk It is with great sadness I report the demise

of a much-loved family member, friend and confidante. I can’t remember exactly when we ‘lost’ Mr Yolk, all I know is that my son’s invisible dog (never, ever, call him imaginary!) gradually stopped raiding the biscuit jar, leaving sharp bits of Lego on the floor and secreting halfchewed carrots in pockets, until there was no sign of him at all. Mr Yolk appeared shortly after my son’s third birthday and quickly made himself at home, demanding his own chair at the table and expecting to be tucked in at night. I lost count of how many times I sat on him or closed the fridge door on his tail. He taught my lad to speak ‘Yolkel’, a strange-sounding language and used to do his important thinking in the wardrobe. During his short tenure with us, Mr Yolk suffered many indignities, yet never once complained. Often he was forgotten on buses, or abandoned during expeditions to the supermarket, and on one memorable occasion he even fell out of an airplane over the Alps. However, Mr Yolk always returned and, as time went on, I began to learn a lot about him via his young interpreter. His favourite foods were Cheesy Wotsits and grapes, he loved bath time – as long as it involved raucous play and no actual soap – and hated going to bed with a passion… in short, he was a mini replica of his owner although invisible. And a dog. Now the see-through pooch is just a memory, but he shall be missed by everyone who knew him. Especially me. By Gill Chetcuti

Kids’ Reads Yattar Yattar picKs out some of ouR favouRite New childReN’s titles Billionaire BoY DaviD Walliams The multi-talented David Walliams is back with another hilarious tale; this time about Joe Spud, a twelveyear-old boy with a huge secret... he’s a billionaire! Joe has everything a boy about town could possibly desire – a bowling alley, an Olympic-sized swimming pool, and all the latest high-tech gadgets... the only thing missing from his life is friendship. When somebody comes into his life, Joe’s about to learn that when money is involved, nothing is simple. Billionaire Boy is packed with silly jokes, the usual comedy baddies and a moral that Roald Dahl would approve of... in short, it’s a hit. Guaranteed to appeal to youngsters under the age of 12. H H H H

DiD You knoW... lizards, part of the successful reptile family, are found on every continent in the world, except antarctica

Animal Magic if you’ve ever fancied getting up close and personal with an abundance of animals,

including goats, meerkats, snakes and lizards, then now’s your chance! following the remarkable success of its ‘Be a Keeper for a day’ experience over summer 2013 which was enjoyed by numerous children, walford and North shropshire college’s animal management centre in Baschurch near shrewsbury is relaunching the programme to allow adults to enjoy the experience as well! from the moment you arrive for your ‘Be a Keeper for a day’ experience, you’ll assist in feeding and handling the animals as well as helping with the day-to-day running of the centre, which is home to over 700 animals from over 100 species. ‘the programme gives participants the opportunity to be involved in every part of the daily animal management,’ explains programme coordinator, derek coffey. ‘participants help with everything from preparing food to feeding and cleaning out, as well as enjoying whatever surprises may come along.’ ‘the day allowed me to handle animals that i have never seen before,’ says one of the recent young keepers, ellie Bird (pictured) from sedgley, west midlands. ‘i really enjoyed feeding all the animals and would love to work with animals in the future.’ the ‘keeper for a Day’ programme at the Walford and north shropshire college costs just £50 for anyone over the age of seven. For more information, contact Derek coffey on 01939 262113 or email a booking form is also available online and can be downloaded from

The Wellington Cobbler and the Wrekin Giant

This new children’s book is an entirely local creation, written by Dave Weston, a former primary school teacher who lives in Wellington. The book was illustrated by Toni Siân Williams who originally hails from Shrewsbury but now lives in Telford, published by Much Wenlock-based Ellingham Press and printed in Shropshire by Graphics and Print Ltd. The story is a version of a well-known local legend – an angry Welsh giant intends to flood the River Severn and the town of Shrewsbury but is tricked by a quick-thinking cobbler from Wellington and so the Wrekin Hill is created. With an interesting tale and fun illustrations (complete with a challenge to find Athena the owl on each page), the book will interest not only children, but readers from the Shropshire and the Welsh borders of all ages. The Wellington Cobbler and the Wrekin Giant is available from Waterstones Shrewsbury as well as direct from Ellingham Press (visit to order) for £4.99.

tinY little FlY, michael rosen A tiny little fly is making a nuisance of himself, divebombing an elephant, a hippo and a tiger. All three of the great creatures are confident that they can catch the little pest but, for once, their size is a hindrance and the fly buzzes happily away. Tiny Little Fly is a simple tale, its beautiful illustrations, movement, drama and mild peril works extremely well, and younger readers, (under 5s) will love having the story read to them. The trampling, swooping and rolling will evoke squeals of delight as the fly proves, once and for all, that bigger is not always better. H H H H Dinosaur Farm Frann Preston-Gannon Farmer Jack and his faithful dino-dog get up early each morning to see to the dinosaurs on his amazing farm. There is much to do, like collecting the pterodactyl eggs, exercising the triceratops and the rather unpleasant job of mucking out the brontosauruses! Jack becomes more and more exhausted by his daily chores and finally flops into bed, with the day’s trials and tribulations behind him... or are they? Dinosaur Farm is a wonderful read for dino-obsessed youngsters (aren’t they all!) between the ages of three and six. Each beautifully illustrated page is chock-a-block with detail and the gentle style and unusual premise make this book a definite winner... we loved it too! H H H H H stick man, Julia doNaldsoN Stick Man lives in the family tree with his good lady wife and their stick children. However, being a stick is fraught with danger – mistaken for an ordinary stick, our hero has to do battle with an over-friendly dog desperate to play, and a swan who wants to use him in her nest. Poor Stick Man even has a brief encounter with a fireplace! Each of these adventures takes him further and further away from his Stick family... now how is he going to get home in one piece? With its catchy rhyming text and typically charming illustrations, Stick Man would appeal to boys and girls between the ages of five and eight. H H H

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 93

Hafod Y Parc, Abergele Gofal Ychwanegol/Extra Care

Byw annibynnol gyda gofal a chefnogaeth cartref 24 awr Fflat arddangos ar agor nawr

01492 572727

Independent living with 24-hour onsite domiciliary care and support Show Apartment now open Contact North Wales Housing

Cysylltwch â Tai Gogledd Cymru

A room to Spare?

Foster for Wrexham

Therapeutic and specialist foster carers needed Mae angen gofalwyr maeth therapiwtig a gofalwyr maes arbenigol hefyd

The need is great.....The rewards are greater

Ystafell iw shario?

Maethu i Wrecsam

Mae’r angenyn fawr....,Mae’r wobr yn fwy

0800 7830618


The need is great, the rewards are greater If you want to help children, we ask who is eligible to work with Wrexham Fostering Service


f you have a caring nature and could give a child a loving, safe home, then fostering could be for you, but what is it like to foster a child? We spoke to two foster carers in the Wrexham area about their experiences.

Lisa’s story ‘My husband and I started fostering 11 years ago and we now foster full time,’ says Lisa. ‘We currently have two brothers and have fostered 18 children over the years. The longest a child has ever stayed with me is two and a half years. He left me in the summer when he was adopted. Of course, I was sad to see him go and it was hard to say goodbye, but we helped with the planned move and introduced him to his ‘forever family’. ‘I decided to become a foster carer so I could help to give children a more normal and stable home. It’s lovely to see them change and grow once they’re in a safe environment – they just don’t take anything for granted. Fostering a child is always rewarding, even with a child with challenging behaviour. You can help them turn their life around and go onto something better. It’s lovely to have a part in that. My husband and I have three children of our own and fostering is an important and enjoyable part of our life.’

Carolyn’s story ‘I’ve always worked with children and used to do child minding, so fostering seemed like a great opportunity to give children a good start,’ says Carolyn, who has been a foster carer for six and a half years. ‘I’m currently fostering one little boy. He’s six years old and has been with me for more than two and a half years. ‘The most rewarding part of being a foster carer is forming a relationship with them. It is good to know that whether they’re returning home or going for adoption, they’re leaving with a better life than when they came to me. The hardest part is definitely saying goodbye! Of course it’s wonderful to see that they’ve moved on, but it’s still difficult to see them go.’ If you would like more information about becoming a foster carer please call Ann Ford on 0800 7830618 or email y

‘It was sad to see him go, but we helped with the planned move and introduced him to his ‘forever family’’

Foster carers are as unique and diverse as the children they look after. Wrexham CBC is currently seeking both specialist and general foster carers to work alongside CYPS (Children and Young People’s Service) to make a real difference to the lives of the county’s most vulnerable children. • You may be male or female • You may be married, civil partners, cohabiting or single • You may rent or own your home • You may have one or more children of your own • You may have no children of your own • You may be employed or not • You may have spent time in care yourself Fostering ranges from full-time, salaried positions, to looking after a child one or two days each month, so whatever your current commitments, becoming a foster carer may fit in with them.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 95

Cool for CAT

Volunteers were responsible for starting the Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) over 35 years ago, and they still form an important part of the CAT family. Volunteers can work in any of the departments at CAT and can pick up valuable skills in scientific research, marketing and media, gardening or managing woodlands, water and natural resources. If you live locally and would like to contribute to the environmental work done by CAT or would like some regular ongoing work experience, CAT can pay for travel expenses and lunch will be provided for volunteers. To find out more about volunteering at CAT in Machynlleth visit or call 01654 705955 (mornings only).

Train of Thought

The historic Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railway relies on volunteers to help keep it running and many of the staff that you might meet on the trains and see working on the line are volunteers perhaps taking a day off from their normal job or using their retirement to help the railway. As well as helping with maintenance and the day-today running of the railway, volunteers are also closely involved in helping with and organising the many special events at the railway such as beer festivals and shows. Should you fancy giving it a go, volunteering at the Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railway is a great way to make friends. Volunteers work together during the day and socialise together in the evenings in the many nearby pubs and restaurants. Evening trains are run from time to time as social events for staff and friends and with the buffet car open and often food available. If you want to stick around and volunteer at the Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railway for longer, you can stay at one of the railway’s own hostels. Hostel accommodation is available at £5.50 a night, but is reduced to £4 a night for members of the Ffestiniog Railway Society or the Welsh Highland Railway Society which reduces to £3 a night after 20 nights. To find out more about volunteering at the Ffestiniog and Welsh Highland Railway or would like to give it a go, contact volunteer resources manager, Tricia Doyle on 01766 516035. Find the railway online at


Dog Day Afte rnoo nsand would

If your organisation would like to be featured on these pages, get in touch on (01978) 813035 or send an email to: editorial@yattar

If you have some spare time like to give a little back to man’s best friend, then get in touch with Greyhound Rescue Wales. The charity is always in need of volunteers to help raise funds. If them care for the dogs in their charge and to help d, then you can you’re an animal lover that would like to get involve check prospective homedogs, of rt transpo the with help to er volunte new owners or even foster dogs yourself. with one of the If you’d rather help with fundraising, you can help meet greyhound charity’s many street collections where you will owners and of course, the dogs themselves. You could also help with one of the many sponsored events that Greyhound Rescue Wales holds throughout the year, including walks and dog shows. If you have a fantastic idea for fundraising of your own event organisers are always open to new ideas, so give them a call! Visit to find out more, or call on 0300 0123 999.

ff s His to ry Bu and around Chester

History fans in Cheshire may well have visited the you e hav but , eum Military Mus a hand ever considered lending seum? and helping out at the mu contributions of the on s relie m seu mu The ers to keep the their enthusiastic volunte so that visitors ing runn exhibitions up and shire’s military past. can learn all about Che m primarily Volunteers at the museu ing visitors and com wel se hou of t work fron its exhibits, and m seu mu describing the nities to assist but there are also opportu s and volunteers in the regimental archive even help with can skills ry essa nec with the k. conservation wor nteering at Find out more about volu eum in Chester Mus tary Mili e shir Che the or at www.cheshiremilitary 327617 museum officer on 01244 the or r ato contact the cur seu mu tary mili hire hes or email enquiries@c

‘K n ow le dge, In sp ir

at io n, Mot iv at io n’

KIM is a volunta ry organisation based in Holwell providing supp , Flintshire, ort to women. Th e group session the charity help s hosted by ordinary wome n who are suffe mental ill health ring from to regain their co nfidence. Those the service can who use choose to go to different groups workshops and , courses, drop-ins, all in a rel ax supportive atmo ed and informa sphere. l yet There are many ways to get inv olved with KIM the charity to co and help ntinue its valua ble work. KIM co group volunteers mmunity help to offer a wa rm welcome to joining the comm anyone unity groups as well as helping the scenes with behind event organisa tion and adminis Volunteers also tration. have the optio n to undergo a OCN level two 10-week accredited traini ng course covering health awarenes mental s, professional bo undaries, confide equality and div ntiality, ersity, risk assessm ent and much community volun more. KIM teers can opt to undergo an extra session that allow training s them to suppor t groups in the ps unit of the local ychiatric hospital. These we ekly groups allow patients to take part in activitie female s such as crafts gentle exercise , pampering, , gardening an d cooking. Find out more ab out volunteerin g with KIM onlin e at or call vo lunteer coordin Hayley Hill on 01 ator, 352 872189.

Work Your Way Up

Wrexham ITeC offer individuals within the local community and local businesses a chance to enhance their employee skills and understanding and develop their knowledge in their chosen career path. One person who Wrexham ITeC has helped is Michael. It all began when Michael went to Wrexham ITeC last February and joined what was then the ‘Steps to Employment’ programme. ‘All of the team at head office talked of his exceptional performance and dedicated service,’ says Wendy Britner, a trainer and mentor at Wrexham ITeC. ‘In the short time that Michael was around, he really did make a difference.’ Soon after, thanks to Michael’s enthusiasm, he began a placement at the Nightingale House Hospice Warehouse, and in October, Michael was offered a permanent position, and works there now. For more information about Wrexham ITeC visit www.


als Walk with the anim for the

Head To page 75

to see events from

Cheshire Wildlife Trust, If you want to do your bit including some you can UK’s wildlife, then why not help out get involved with! at Cheshire Wildlife Trust? Volunteers are the backbone of the movement and Cheshire’s current 300 volunteers play a vital role in helping the trust to deliver its conservation work. Wherever your skills lie, there are plenty of ire ways to get involved with volunteering at Chesh to s reserve nature after looking from Trust, Wildlife if running Wildlife Watch groups for children. Even to get you’re not the outdoorsy type, there are still ways main involved – you can always help out at the trust’s istrative office in Bickley Hall Farm, where your IT, admin your ver Whate use. good to put be will or people skills isn’t just skills, your help will be valued by the trust, but it them that benefit – you’ll get to enjoy the local wildlife while developing new skills. Find out more about volunteering at Cheshire Wildlife Trust at

Ride to the Rugby

Join Colin Charvis for Shelter Cymru’s 2014 Challenge – to ride from the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff all the way to the Aviva Stadium in Dublin in time to take your seat to watch Wales take on Ireland as part of the Six Nations! Colin Charvis, former Wales captain, British Lions forward and now an ambassador of Shelter Cymru, will be leading the ride of 200 miles. Colin is also a keen cyclist and has completed the ABSA Cape Epic. ‘There is no doubt that this could be an amazing adventure,’ he says. Participants must raise at least £1,200 to take part in the challenge, with the funds going to aid the work of Shelter Cymru. In return, participants will receive a ticket to the Wales v Ireland match, advice and training prior to departure, a preride training day, ferry crossing to Ireland, all accommodation and food during the challenge. Ride to the Rugby will start at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff on Wednesday 5th February, with the Wales v Ireland rugby match taking place at the Aviva Stadium, Dublin on Saturday 8th February. If you’re interested in taking part in the Shelter Cymru Challenge, visit or call 01792 469 400

King of the Castle

The medieval Powis Castle is perhaps best known for its world-famous gardens, which were laid out in the Italian and French styles. The castle itself has been added to and remodelled over more than 400 years, with each generation of the Herbert family adding to the castle’s collection of art, furniture and tapestries. These days, the castle is owned by the National Trust and is run and maintained by a dedicated staff and many volunteers. If you have an interest in history and would like to help to make sure that future generations have the opportunity to see this unique property, then there are a variety of opportunities for you no matter what your skills or however much time you are able to commit. Find out more about volunteering at Powis Castle at www.nationaltrust. or register your interest by calling Jennifer Knight on 01938 551929.

Lynne Allbutt:

Allbutt Shoes Barefoot Run


always like to set myself a challenge or two each year – they have varied from wing walking and running up a Scottish mountain at night with an LED light suit on, to simply making improvements to my own cottage and garden or learning a new skill. This year I have given myself quite a big challenge, probably the biggest one yet. In a couple of months I will be running across Wales. I can see you raising an eyebrow now! It is 50 miles but not too difficult for someone who has run the Reykjavik, London and Cardiff Marathons surely? Ah no – I’ll be running across Wales barefoot! Fifity miles is more or less two marathons back to back, and I’ll be going across country. At the time of writing this there are a few details to be finalised (the actual date being one) but training has already begun. It’s two-fold of course, firstly I have to get my fitness level back up as for one reason and another all I have been running for a while are baths! And of course I have to harden up my feet. Not easy during the winter months, I can tell you. Training at the moment is mostly consisting of running barefoot on a treadmill at The Manor Hotel in Crickhowell – where thankfully they have accommodated me and my mad idea, but obviously I have to get my feet out on a regular basis too, so there are regular barefoot walks and jogs going on much to the amusement of passers-by safely ensconced in their Berghaus boots and thick socks. Apart from the cold, one of the most challenging aspects of running off road barefoot is that it is surprisingly slippery – we have no grips or treads on our feet!

Black TIe and BareFooT Ball After the ‘Allbutt Shoes’ Barefoot Run, there will also be a Black Tie and Barefoot Ball, during which shoes and boots donated by celebrities will be auctioned off to raise money for charity. Do contact me via my website for more details about any aspect. And finally I must say a huge thank you to the RWA Group in Blaenavon who are supporting me in my endeavours as I use the challenge to promote the health benefits of being barefoot. I am very much enjoying being involved in their online training projects and appreciate them keeping my feet on the ground! y

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 97

THE SEVEN THINGS YOU MUST KNOW ABOUT MAKING A PERSONAL INJURY CLAIM By Mark Lampkin, Chester and North Wales Leading Injury Claim Expert

As a personal injury claim expert of 25 years’ experience I want to share with you the seven things that you must know before you, a relative or friend make your first call following an accident that causes injury. I regularly see how innocent accident victims often make the wrong call, end up in the wrong hands and lose out on hundreds or thousands of pounds of their rightful compensation. Here is my simple guide to make sure that you get the best help should the worst happen and you were injured on the road, at work or out and about.

1. Why you should not ring your insurers first

Mark Lampkin:

Expert solicitor and specialist in accident claims

If you have an accident in your car or on your motorcycle and it was clearly your fault you should ring your insurers at the earliest opportunity, but if the accident was not your fault then you must take advice before making that call. Remember that insurance companies only owe a duty to their shareholders and not to you. A solicitor properly appointed by you will owe you a duty to make sure your interests are protected at all stages.

2. Why you should never call a claims company!

A claims company can do nothing else for you other than pass your details on to a solicitor. In the past the claims companies charged a fee to those solicitors but following the ban on selling cases in April 2013 they are now making money by taking a percentage of your case. Claims companies are allowed to charge up to 25% of your claim. What do you get for this? Nothing!

3. Why no win no fee is good for you

Despite the phrase “No win no fee” almost becoming a dirty word it is actually a brilliant system for any innocent accident victim. Under this system a solicitor will work for them and will only be paid should they win the case. This means that good solicitors fight hard to win cases for deserving clients. If they win they recover most of their costs from the losing party’s insurance company and under changes introduced in April only up to 25% of a client’s case can go towards legal costs. This is a brilliant system where clients are guaranteed at least 75% of their claim.

4. Why your employer cannot dismiss you for making a claim

Provided you have worked for your employer for in excess of two years continuously you will have employment protection. This means that you cannot be dismissed otherwise than for a fair reason and if you are you could claim compensation for unfair dismissal. If your employer dismissed you for making a claim it is highly likely that a Tribunal would find that this was an unfair dismissal and would award compensation to you. Do not allow an employer to bully you into not claiming it is your right not to be injured whilst making profit for your employer and if you are you should and must claim.

5. Why you should not feel bad about claiming

It is not wrong to claim compensation for your loss and injury that has been caused by somebody’s negligence. Car drivers, employers and owners of public property all must be insured. Insurance companies skilfully use the media to create a public impression that it is wrong to claim. This reduces the amount of claims they face and means they pay out less money and make more profit for their shareholders. Do not be fooled and if you are innocently injured you should claim what is rightfully yours.

6. You do not need to use solicitors appointed by your insurers

Most insurers will charge you an extra premium for legal expenses insurance on your motor policy. If you have an accident they insist upon you using their solicitors normally because they have a financial arrangement whereby they make profit from this referral system. Some may even take a percentage of your case. The European Courts have ruled that if you have legal expense insurance you have a right to appoint your own solicitor with the benefit of that policy. It is often better for you to be represented by your chosen solicitor who is local to you rather than be appointed a solicitor who could be at the other end of the country.

7. The Three Year Rule

Following an accident that has caused an injury you normally have three years from the accident date in which to issue Court Proceedings. This date can be extended for children (before their 21st birthday) or where you did not know that you had sustained an injury for example in cases of industrial deafness, asbestosis and medical accidents.

Why choose Lampkins

I have built my business to serve people in the Chester and North Wales area who have had such accidents and to make sure that they are properly advised and represented at all stages. I appear on radio, TV and in other media as a personal injury expert and have a team of lawyers and assistants ready to help you. We aim to make you so pleased with our help that you will tell all your friends and family about us. Please see our testimonials on our website or listen to our client’s testimonials on Chester’s Dee 106.3.

We hope you will stay safe but when the worst happens we are here to help you put things right. Call 01244 525725 or click to find out how we can help you. Home and hospital visits arranged and we always offer a free interview for enquiries of whatever nature.


Blood on the courtroom carpet! If you have a legal question, tune into Dee 106.3 every Monday at 9pm to catch Ask Lampkin. Ask your question at, and get your answer for free on the air!

Mark Lampkin examines how changes to court procedure has led to a massive disruption in how justice is dispensed in England and Wales, and why you should think carefully before you take a case to court yourself…


hen people fall out and resort to the courts, they have always had a rocky road to justice. The civil courts have rules on what you have to do to prepare your case correctly before it eventually comes before a judge. Documents, expert’s reports, witness statements and a whole plethora of other matters have to be timetabled and controlled so that a full ‘cards on the table’ approach can be achieved. This is meant to control litigation so that deserving cases could be heard swiftly and at less cost but institutional non-compliance meant that costs spiralled, dates were missed and the public perception of the legal system being massively expensive and long winded remained. The law fell into disrepute and the great British tradition of respecting the rule of law and justice was in danger of crumbling. Something had to be done so Judge Jackson was appointed to sort it out. Ask any litigation lawyer today what do they think of Jackson and they will

start shivering, foaming at the mouth and reaching for that bottle of single malt in the top draw of the filing cabinet. Believe me he has changed everything and you will be affected if you ever have to enforce your rights by going to court. The rules are now sacrosanct and must be obeyed at all times. Comply or die! That means that any breach of any requirement needed to send a certain document to the court or your opponent can lead to a perfectly valid and potentially huge case being thrown out or some other draconian penalty imposed. In the past lawyers and litigants had an unwritten agreement that if the court gave a certain date for witness statements to be exchanged, or similar, then a few days slippage would be ‘ignored’. Not now. If you delay a day a judge can pick up the file and strike out the case, pronto, and leave the poor client having to start again and sue his solicitor.

BLOOD On tHe CARpet A stark example of how this ‘blood on the carpet’ approach is exactly what was intended was reinforced in the first case on the new rules to come before the Court of Appeal, literally the big-wigs (because they do actually wear big wigs!). This may surprise you – the case came out of the famous ‘Plebgate’ affair where MP Andrew Mitchell had a run in with the Downing Street police officers. He sued for libel against the publishers of what has turned out to be incorrect allegations. His lawyers faced a requirement in the rules to lodge in court an estimate of their predicted costs seven days prior to an interim hearing designed to bring the matter before a judge who would set out a timetable to manage the case to trial. They sent it only the day before the hearing so the judge at that hearing slaughtered them by striking

out their right to claim any costs at all. By the way the costs were, at that stage an eye watering half a million pounds! Ouch!

COMpLy OR DIe! So why am I telling you all this about how unshakeably tough the courts will be if you want to litigate? Surely this only affects sloppy lawyers? Well there is some truth in that but with the rise in the small claims limit to ten thousand pounds and the virtual removal of legal aid a lot of people will rightly be taking cases to court on their own. The rule books stand at about ten inches thick and if they make a mistake on any of them they could have their case thrown out before even throwing a six to start! You have been warned it could be your blood on the carpet next time. y

Mark Lampkin Bio

Originally from Liverpool, Mark grew up in Preston where he later qualified as a solicitor in 1990. Initially working for a number of large law firms he began to specialise in personal injury law and founded his own firm, Lampkin & Co in 1999. He is the Principal Solicitor at the firm and features on a weekly legal advice show called Ask Lampkin which is broadcast on Chester’s Dee 106.3. Mark regularly writes articles on the ever changing area of personal injury law, claimant rights and features in editorials giving advice on a range of legal issues. He is an experienced motorcyclist and also an accomplished musician, playing tenor saxophone and has a passion for jazz.

Lampkin and Co are regulated by the Solicitor’s Regulation Authority. Contact them on 08081 782110 for clear and honest advice for free, or visit their website at

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100 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

By Gill Chetcuti

23 24



ACross 1 north african republic and us? (5) 4 earliest known period of human culture (5, 3) 8 ark tower system a weekly occurrence in shropshire? (8, 6) 10 fielders during cricket matches (3, 5) 11 bodelwyddan, for instance (6) 12 Convert into a vapour (9) 15 school for royalty in Chester? (5) 17 Type of dog, for example (5) 18 dodos veer and took too much? (9) 19 The faithful hound (6) 21 Farmer in Mull used this to deter theft of his flock. (5, 3) 24 winter essentials? (5, 3, 6) 25 where spiders work? (8) 26 get down from a duck? (5) Clues Down 1 Carry carriers? (8, 4) 2 a decline in fortune, status or condition (9) 3 Fictional lion meets compass point and sounds nosey. (5) 4 bound and hung up? sounds like torture! (9) 5 great part of llandudno! (4) 6 part of body stained for use for particular purpose? (9) 7 sounds like the best way to serve cheese! (5) 9 Julien Macdonald finds furniture? (5, 7) 13 Military command to hold a rifle with its butt on the ground (5, 4) 14 Visors used for protection against glare (3, 6) 16 envied sod who fell on his face! (9) 20 real ache in Chester? (5) 22 small flintshire town (5) 23 Rising agent loses letter and finds direction. (4)



Seven reasons to use a Financial Adviser

Taking professional financial advice, can not only help protect and build your assets it can secure you and your family’s long term future. By Emyr Evans


To protect your family. An adviser can assess your position, and guide you through the best options to protect yourself and your family. Whatever your needs, an adviser can help ensure personal tragedy does not turn into financial crisis.


To help plan your spending and saving. To secure your long-term future, you need to build up some assets, initially to get you through the rainy days and then to pay for holidays and luxuries. Firstly, plan your spending, so that you begin to save, and secondly, plan that saving so that you can build your wealth as efficiently as possible. An adviser can help you create this plan.


To help you plan for retirement. You can then start thinking about the long term – and most people now realise that they cannot rely on the state for more than the basics. Pensions have come a long way in terms of flexibility and transparency, and now offer a wide range of investment choices. A financial adviser can help with these decisions.


To help meet your investment goals. As you progress through life, you begin to build your

assets and your income begins to increase. You then start thinking about planning for school or university fees, or retiring. However as your dreams evolve, a financial adviser can help assess what is realistically possible. A financial adviser will make a detailed assessment of your attitude to risk before making any recommendations, as often it’s as much about protecting against potential downsides as it is about maximum growth.


To save money. The next step is to look at tax and even the most basic overview of your position could help. It may simply mean using ISAs or a pension plan to benefit from government incentives, tax allowances, and use of your personal allowances. A financial adviser will always have your tax position in mind when making recommendations and can help point you in the right direction.


To keep you on track. Even when your investments have been put in place and are running to plan, someone needs to keep an eye on them in case market changes or abnormal events push them off course. Monitoring your investments

and a regular review of progress is essential to your relationship with your financial adviser.


For peace of mind. Money is a complicated subject and there are many things you need to consider in order both to protect it and to make the most of it. A good financial adviser can remove the pressure from you, placing it in the hands of an expert. In the long term, the money you invest in expert advice will be paid back many times over. y

Emyr Evans is employed by Williams Financial Planning. Visit or call 01978 266501

Seeking financial advice and understanding financial markets can be a daunting experience with so many products and sources of advice now available. For over 35 years we have been advising clients; helping them to make financial decisions easier and ensuring peace of mind over their financial affairs. We provide Independent Financial Advice on: • Pensions • Investments

Williams Financial Planning Independent Financial Advisors 30 Chester Street, Wrexham, LL13 8TJ. T: 01978 266501

• Life Assurance • Inheritance Tax Planning

Enterprise House, The Courtyard, Old Court House Road, Bromborough, Wirral, CH62 4UE. T: 0151-644-4848

E: W:


Now the party season is over we bring you ways to feel great in 2014



Oats Cuisine

Best Foot Forward

We know that oats are healthy, but do we know why? Oats are one of Mother Nature’s ways to reduce cholesterol as they contain soluble fibre, which can help reduce your low-density lipoprotein (LDL – also known as the bad cholesterol). It’s thought that soluble fibre achieves this by reducing the amount of cholesterol absorbed in your intestines. However, to get the full cholesterol-busting benefits of oats, you should ensure the rest of your diet is low in saturated fat and that you enjoy a healthy lifestyle. In addition, oats contain slow-release carbohydrates, which are great fuel for the body. As they release their energy slowly, they keep your blood sugar level, which helps to avoid energy crashes. Oats make the ideal breakfast food as they help you avoid the dreaded mid-morning slump. If you’re looking for a delicious start to your morning that’ll keep you going, then the wide range of porridges and oat cereals from Mornflake are a great option. Mornflake have been milling oats in the south Cheshire countryside since 1675, so have had plenty of time to get their products just right. Their range includes porridge, oatflakes, muesli and even oats to go pots and sachets for when you’re in a rush. It isn’t all about breakfast, though. Many of Mornflake’s products are extremely versatile and can be used to make everything from cookies and flapjacks to smoothies. You can even use their oatbran as an alternative to breadcrumbs for a crispy coating for chicken.

Recipe: Marmelo Porridge

Get your day off to a great start with this great tasting porridge that takes just 10 minutes to prepare! Ingredients: 1 cup (85g) of Mornflake Superfast Oats 2 cups of water 2 generous spoonfuls of marmalade Orange and lemon zest Optional – tablespoon of golden syrup 1. Place boiling water into a saucepan. Then add the Mornflake Superfast Oats and the cups of water and stir thoroughly. 2. Bring the water saucepan back to the boil and then reduce the heat slightly, but keeping it high. Continue to stir regularly for 3 – 4 minutes, cooking to a nice thick consistency. 3. Wash the orange and lemon thoroughly. With a fine grater or zester take the zest, being careful not to remove the pith. Set this aside. 4. Spoon the porridge into bowls. Into each bowl swirl a generous table spoonful of marmalade. Sprinkle a little orange and lemon zest over the top. Pour a spoonful of golden syrup over the top if you like a bit more sweetness. 5. Serve and eat the porridge hot.

102 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Sarah Johnson and Joanna Fellows of Forest Hill Practice in Tarporley can diagnose and treat foot and podiatry problems that can affect people of all ages. They specialise in musculoskeletal ailments, biomechanical dysfunction and nail surgery. ‘We also have a special interest in gait analysis and can diagnose and treat musculoskeletal complaints in the lower limbs and back,’ says Sarah Johnson. ‘The podiatrist will make an accurate diagnosis and then provide a variety of treatment regimes specifically tailored for you. Many ailments affecting the lower limbs can be treated with prescription insoles called orthotics which are worn in your footwear, accompanied by a specific exercise programme for you. Using the Sidas moulded system we can make custom made orthotics on site. There are players in many of the premier league football clubs, top rugby players and cricket players who all use Sidas insoles which can correct or stabilise foot problems enhancing the mechanics of the foot, leg and the body as a whole.’ If you think you could benefit from any of the treatments at Forest Hill Practice, call 01829 731360 or visit www.

Get Alarmed


Male Did you know that each winter, a larger proportion of Britons die Testosterone Levels Dropping because of unseasonably cold weather than in either Finland or Russia. Testosterone is the primary male hormone Martin Clayton, at GTi insulation and draught proofing specialists, is urging elderly responsible for the changes at puberty, lower people to fit a temperature alarm to help them ensure that their home is warm enough. voice, beard and male pattern body hair growth. ‘A cold alarm is very simple to install. There is a traffic light set of signals to show the It is vital to a man’s sex drive, performance and dwelling’s heat status. If the temperature is above 18C a green light will flash every ten virility, yet year after year the level in the seconds, if it falls to between 12 and 18C, it will flash amber which indicates that the adult male population is in decline. occupant needs to increase heating and if it falls between 7 and 12C, it will flash The problem is environmental red indicating that action needs to be taken urgently. Below 7C it will also emit with numerous chemicals in get your skin an audible beep indicating a serious risk of hypothermia.’ antiperspirants, shaving creams looking its and gels, hair and body Cold alarms are available for as little as £15. Visit best with boo skincare! Head to page 33 to find out more

cleaning products. Men’s levels of testosterone are becoming seriously depleted especially after 30 years of age. Over 3000 permitted artificial additives, preservatives, pesticides etc. have been sanctioned by the European Union and are now appearing in virtually everything we consume. Just as we found out far too late that lead pipes and asbestos were not such good ideas we are racing ahead with no idea of what problems we are storing up. So what can men (or their partners, as men are typically blasé about their health) do to help?

By Ben Holt at Mark Leather physiotherapy

One of the main causes of injury we see is due to overuse. This is common in the New Year when people start to exercise more. However, many issues can be avoided. l buiLD up your exerCise iNTeNsiTy: Try not to start with unrealistic goals of what you can achieve in the first few weeks of training. Build up exercise frequency and duration gradually and don’t be afraid to plateau for a week or two. l VAriATioN oF exerCise: This can help reduce overloading certain joints and tissues and reduce the probability of injury. Swimming is a great way to do this as it works all areas of the body, including the core muscles, whilst reducing repetitive impact being placed on the ankles, knees, hips and lower back. l weAr THe CorreCT FooTweAr: Some fashion trainers are inappropriate for exercise due to the low heel cup and over flexible soles and fabric. Your foot and ankle needs to be as supported as possible to reduce unwanted movement of the joints, which has direct links to ligament sprains, muscle strains or even fractures around the metatarsals. For further injury prevention advice or to access our range of services including; injury diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation and sports massage please contact me on 07887 572540.

3 of the best

Extra Care Housing

A new innovative concept in housing for older people is set to open its doors in Abergele. Hafod Y Parc on Kinmel Avenue in Abergele is a £11 million development with modern amenities and finished to a high standard throughout. The development will feature 49 one and two bedroom fully self-contained apartments. The new build is part of the extra care scheme, which provides independent living for older people, backed up by onsite care. The scheme has been developed by North Wales Housing in association with Conwy Borough Council and aims to let older people keep their independence for longer. In addition to their own apartments, residents will also have access to communal areas, including a restaurant, hobby room, several lounges, a therapy room, hair salon, guest suite, assisted bathroom, scooter store, landscaped gardens and the patio. ‘I’m sure that the independent living these new homes in Abergele will provide will be very welcome,’ commented Carl Sargeant AM, minister for housing and regeneration. Hafod Y Parc is expected to open its doors early this year. Visit or call the extra care team at North Wales Housing on 01492 572727.

1. Take a testosterone precursor to boost your levels ( 2. Avoid shampoos and skin products that list ‘parabens’ in their ingredients. 3. Do not use a deodorant that contains any metal derivatives such as aluminium. 4. Avoid eating meat that contains growth hormones given routinely to cows in their feed. 5. Do not smoke and restrict consumption of takeaways or ready meals to once a week. 6. Avoid using chemical cleaning products which contain nasty ingredients. Vinegar and lemon juice are much safer. 7. Do not binge drink. 8. Don’t be embarrassed! Most men suffer from erectile dysfunction sometimes and if someone loves you they will help you overcome it.

St Agnes at RJAH

Professor Stephen Einsenstein, consultant spinal surgeon at the Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital NHS Foundation Trust (RJAH), took up his recreational art of restoring traditional glass in 1986 and recently restored a stained glass window made in 1888 which he has since donated to the hospital. The window (pictured here with the professor) depicts an angelic St Agnes with a lamb at her feet, particularly fitting as namesake of the saint is one of the hospital’s founders. ‘The legacy of being involved in this part of history is the most pleasing aspect of what I will leave behind for future generations,’ says Professor Eisenstein.

A Helping Hand....

Your skin can take a beating over the winter months, particularly your hands. We’ve picked out some of our favourite hand creams from the high street

CLAriNs HAND AND NAiL TreATMeNT CreAM £20.00 for 100ml This treatment will not only keep your hands moisturised over the winter months, but will also help to keep them looking youthful and helps to build stronger nails thanks to extracts of sesame, Japanese mulberry and myrrh.

NeuT NeuTrogeNA NorwegiAN ForMuLA HAND CreAM ForM £2.89 for 50ml You only need to use a small amount of this hand cream for immediate and lasting relief for even the driest hands. It even helps to soothe chapped hands. This small tube is perfect for popping in your handbag.

Cr CrAbTree AND eVeLyN rosew rosewATer HAND THerApy Cre CreAM, £9.00 for 50g Macadamia nut oil and shea butter are the magic ingredients in this hand cream that help to soothe and protect your skin. The cream also contains ceramides which help to improve your skin’s barrier function and reduce moisture loss.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 103


Health Myths Spicy foodS Speed up your MetaboliSM If only this one was true! Sadly, a person’s metabolic rate is determined only by their gender, height, weight and age. These factors decide the amount of calories the body will need to burn in order to work efficiently. Eating spicy foods have little effect on one’s metabolism although your body temperature may temporarily rise and your heart may beat a bit faster, due to increased blood pressure. However, experts do agree that spicy food can trick your body into feeling full. it’S Safe to follow tHe 5-Second rule Most of us have done it – picked up a fallen morsel, given it a quick blow and popped it in our mouth, quoting the five-second rule in our defence. For those unfamiliar with this concept, the five-second rule states that food dropped on the floor will be safe to eat if it is picked up within five seconds! However, this is a fallacy as the transfer of bacteria from a contaminated surface to food is almost instantaneous. Each year in the UK around a million people suffer a food-related illness with 20,000 of these ending up in hospital! cutting your Hair MakeS it grow faSter This is, unfortunately, another old wives’ tale, as hair grows at a rate of between a quarter of an inch and half an inch per month, whether you cut it or not. However, a regular trim will help to seal one’s hair tips, reducing split ends and making hair look thicker and healthier. Shampoos do not affect hair growth either, (whatever the beauty industry wants you to believe), although some products can make it appear thicker by swelling the follicles.

Want to get happy?

By Alan Wick, Positive Hypnotherapy Try these 10 every day tips for happiness, and see how they help you cope so much better with the long wait for spring. 1 Do something to help somebody else. We are herd animals and need to feel part of a group. When we help somebody, their gratitude helps underpin feelings of belonging. Dr Thomas Norlin from Esthetique Dental in 2 Smile! Ideally at other people! Feel the warmth Shrewbury tells us about cosmetic dentistry and of their almost inevitable response, they smile right the treatments available back! We have powerful ‘mirror neurons’ that cause us to both respond in kind to positivity, and to feel Q. Why do people choose to have cosmetic better ourselves. dental work done? 3 Engage in enjoyable exercise. Not power-lifting, a. Many people can’t smile confidently because they don’t like the colour, shape, unless that’s your bag anyway, but gentle enjoyable position or overall appearance of their teeth. exercise producing endorphins to help you feel Improving a person’s smile can help to boost good and allowing your body to function as it is their confidence massively. intended… get out from behind the desk! Q. What cosmetic dentistry do you offer? 4 Notice the world around you. The snowdrops and a. We offer more conservative techniques daffodils as they surface… just lift up your head as that are minimally invasive and aim to you go about your business and become mindful of preserve as much of the tooth structure as the beauty around you. possible. We also offer a range of treatments 5 Try to learn something new, or move out of your such as tooth coloured fillings, cosmetic comfort zone in some way. Research links longevity contouring, cosmetic orthodontics including with curiosity for novelty. clear aligners and Six Month Smiles, whitening, 6 Have something to look forward to. It doesn’t all ceramic crowns and veneers, hybrid have to be a cruise every time, and I’m not talking bridges and implants. about wishing your lives away either, just that Q. What are the differences between the Six having something nice on the horizon tends to keep Month Smiles and virtually invisible braces? us travelling along. a. Six Month Smiles is a fixed alignment system 7 Sometimes life has a way of putting monsters using tooth-coloured brackets and wires. It in our cupboards, and then the only treats moderate crowding and more complex cases. Treatment takes thing left we can change is the way we between six and nine months, respond – disaster or opportunity? depending on how complex Lemons or lemonade? Do you want to get fit the case is. Clear aligners are 8 Take a positive approach to and healthy this New removable and generally used to everything you do. A job done Year? Head to page treat milder crowding. well, no matter how small it may 30 to read all about Q. What are the first steps for seem, is always more satisfying someone considering treatment? Your Body Matters, a than a job grumbled about. a. It’s a good idea to research unique ladies only gym 9 Limit the time you spend what you want to achieve and around people who do not take this in Wrexham what treatments might be available. positive approach to life. It’s hard to When a patient comes in for a keep your pecker up when surrounded consultation, a thorough examination is by moaners, so ration yourself. carried out. Gums, wear, joints and mucosa 10 Make yourself your own top priority. If you don’t are as important as the appearance of the take care of yourself, you can’t possibly go on caring teeth, so we look at the mouth as a whole. for and looking after others! Find out more at

All Smiles

or call 01939 211150.

The Singing Doctors

Two top performers from Welsh National Opera recently gave an intimate performance just for the residents of Pendine Park Care Homes. Doctors Diva and Divo, also known as the singing doctors, Zoe Milton Brown and David Graham, gave show-stopping performances. ‘We are very proud at the WNO to be Gold Community Champions,’ explains artist in residence, Sarah Edwards. ‘The therapeutic values of music are well documented and it’s wonderful for relatives to see how it brings a smile to resident’s faces.’ The project to bring music to Pendine Park aims to use music to boost the health, well-being and sense of community amongst residents, visitors and staff. Soprano Zoë was born in South Wales and graduated from Christ’s College, Cambridge, where she was a choral scholar. At Pendine Park she melted the heart of Highfield resident John Galley: ‘The music was very good, really professional and I really enjoyed it.’ Tracy Green, who organises the music therapy at Pendine Park, was delighted that the residents had been given such a ‘wonderful musical tonic’. She said: ‘The residents gain such pleasure and enjoyment from music, we regularly welcome the Hallé orchestra as visitors and its fantastic that world class singers from WNO have come to Pendine Park to enrich people’s lives with music.’ Find out more about Pendine Park at or call 01978 720242.

104 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

New patient s consultation We are a friendly and relaxed practice where practitioners are happy to discuss any of your concerns. We aim to provide a multi-disciplinary approach to the health and quality of life of our clients.


Podiatry/Chiropody Podiatry specialises in the diagnosis and treatment of disorders of the foot, ankle and lower limb and thus corrects the alignment of the body. We specialise in musculoskeletal podiatry, paediatric complaints and toe nail surgery and have a special interest in Gait analysis and with the aid of a RS pressure platform, we can diagnose and treat musculoskeletal complaints in the lower limb. Treatment might indicate the use of prescribed orthotic devices prefabricated or custom made. With the Investment of the Sidas moulded system we can make custom made orthotics onsite. Orthotics can be made (moulded) for patients with musculoskeletal issues for all sporting activities and also can be used to alleviate various medical conditions which affect the feet.



New year, new smile This year put yourself first and get the smile you’ve always wanted. Esthetique Dental will make you want to smile with a range of treatment options to suit all. Cosmetic Dentistry

Dental Implants





Six Month Smiles DENTAL


Tooth Whitening DENTAL


Call now to book your consultation · Interest Free Credit available

Telephone 01939 211150


If you think you could benefit from any of our services then call us now on 01829 731360 DENTAL Forest Hill Practice, 29A Forest Road, Tarporley CW6 0HX

Discover our anti-ageing treatments and unwrap a softer more beautiful you this New Year Anti Wrinkle Injectables Dermal Fillers Liquid facelift Lip fillers Call us to book your free consultation on 01743 271 404 Cedar House Clinic, Shrewsbury Business Park, SY2 6LG

11&12 The Stables · Sansaw Business Park Shrewsbury · SY4 4AS @esthetique_uk





How much more effective and enjoyable could your life be, if you could only sleep?

throughout January and February

Sleepless nights can be reduced, often quickly, and sometimes eradicated altogether. CHESTER Pulford Rossett WREXHAM

Book a free initial consultation with Alan;

01978 781 606


Langollen Chirk




Clinics in Wrexham, Chester, Rhyl and Shrewsbury

There are better ways than counting sheep!

Concerned about Memory loss? Why do we forget things as we get older? Homocysteine is a natural but potentially harmful amino acid in our blood. As we age its levels rise. Research shows that high Homocysteine is linked to memory decline, dementia, Alzheimer’s and other brain disorders. Folic acid and B vitamins decrease Homocysteine levels in the blood and these supplements are often prescribed by doctors.

Doctor’s ‘One-A-Day’ solution

Betrinac® is a one a day supplement developed by COBALZ Limited - a team of researchers led by Professor Bjorn Regland and Dr Andrew McCaddon. Betrinac® is specifically formulated to combat this cause of memory loss. Betrinac® uses the highest dose of powerful B12, B6, Folic acid and an antioxidant (NAC) available in any one pill. Betrinac® is therefore your one-stopshop for all these essential ingredients.

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18/12/2013 13:32


A spa to remember Once upon a time being pampered was a luxury few could afford – but not any more as found out during a visit to Deganwy Quay


rriving at the hotel, tired after a busy morning’s Christmas shopping in Chester one Saturday in December, we were worried we had arrived late for the pre-arranged 4pm spa treatment, part of the ‘His & Hers’ package, at the Quay Hotel and Spa. ‘Don’t worry,’ said the receptionist, ‘We’ll take your bags to the room, just go straight up to the spa.’ So along the corridor and upstairs to the Aromatherapy Associates spa we go. We complete a short medical history form (allergies, medication and things of that sort) and are shown through to the changing areas where we leave everything in a locker, donning a white robe and towelling slippers. From there, we’re taken to a treatment room where our therapists meet us to go discuss the treatments. We had both opted for the massage and were given a choice of essential oils – did we want a blend that was relaxing, or something more invigorating?

with other happy customers, all relaxing after their treatments. We’re advised to take it easy for a bit and drink plenty of water – the manipulation of your muscles dehydrates them as water, salt and other minerals are flushed out. It’s also why you feel a bit spacy and disorientated afterwards. We felt great, all relaxed and elastic, a bit light headed and buzzy! After a few minutes, and feeling a bit more on solid ground, we venture out to the pool area and sit in the lovely steam room, which is a real treat. A quick try in the sauna, followed by a cold dip in the pool and the jacuzzi. Feeling reborn after the shopping exertions, we walk straight to our room in our robes, to be welcomed by a sunset view of the estuary and a chilled bottle of Champagne. Fantastic.

and so to dinner… Changed for dinner, we head downstairs to the restaurant to meet the Spanish head waiter, who guides us through a world tour of wine choices. We’re told they have just six oysters left, and we can’t resist – and from the Menai straits too – delicious. Dinner is inventive, skilful and delicious. A highlight was the monkfish tail, served spiced with samphire, but the big star was the 28-day matured rib-eye steak, cooked perfectly in Big Bertha, the kitchen’s 450-degree charcoal oven. A lovely evening, with such friendly staff all wanting to chat about the hotel, the area, the food, the wine. The Quay Hotel and Spa was very busy that evening, with a special function going on upstairs – so we came down to breakfast the next day to a full restaurant, with everyone enjoying a hearty cooked breakfast with all he trimmings. However the staff never missed a beat, attentive of course, but the overwhelming impression was of their open friendliness which really makes you feel welcome in beautiful Deganwy. y

‘Feeling reborn, we walk straight to our room, to be welcomed by a sunset view of the estuary’

time to just relax We’re left to lie face down under the towels on side-by-side massage tables, with soft music playing through the scents of essential oils. It’s all about relaxation, de-stressing, and a one hour professional massage. Using liberal amounts of oil, first they work on the back of our legs, back, arms and then neck. This takes a good 30 minutes. Then we are asked to turn over, and towel is placed across our eyes, and the front of our legs are worked on, then arms, and finally neck. The therapists must be quite strong doing this kind of work – to work each muscle, using their hands and forearms to press into the deeper tissues. When the treatment is finished, we’re left to put our robes back on, then brought a welcome fruit sorbet, and shown to the ‘chill out room’ where we can recline having a pedicure on the sunday morning…

His & Hers Heavenly Retreat, £145 per person

1 night stay with dinner, bed and breakfast A chilled bottle of Perrier Jouert Champagne in your room on arrival. For her: choose from either an Aromatherapy facial and scalp treatment or a full body massage. For him: choose from either a purifying face and scalp treatment or a deep tissue full body massage treatment time: one hour per person Full use of leisure facilities

The View… Located on the quay itself, from almost any vantage point inside or outside the hotel, you are treated to 180 degrees unspoilt view of Conwy Mountain, UNESCO World Heritage Site Conwy Castle, and the ever-changing estuary tides. The sun rises over the mouth of the river and sets on the Irish Sea, creating beautiful scenes and colours. We could have sat for hours watching the boats bob on their moorings, the seabirds, and the light playing off the water. At night, the castle is lit up fantastically, like a medieval fairytale, glowing orange and yellow against the backdrop of dramatic black mountains. Quay Hotel and Spa, Deganwy, Conwy LL31 9DJ 01492 564100

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 107

Yattar Yattar: 110,000 readers! 48,000 copies picked up means Yattar gets talked about a lot – see what they’re saying… Yvonne Layn, owner, Jenevieve, Llangollen ‘I have advertised with Yattar Yattar on a number of occasions and it has been good to hear from new customers that they have found us from our advertisements in Yattar Yattar. The magazine looks good and is so easily available to the public.’

Debbie Wilson, owner, Three Pigeons Inn, Denbighshire

Martin Jones, owner Vaughan Davies, Mold ‘A highly effective way of reaching people. A stunning image and your contact details are all you need.’

‘As new owners of a business we decided to advertise with Yattar Yattar because of its wide circulation, and the fact that we used to read the magazine! We found that it brought new customers from as far afield as 30-40 miles away, who would not have heard about us if it was not for this great magazine!

Wyn Williams, RN Williams, St Asaph

‘Having advertised with Yattar Yattar for over three years, I only have positive things to say. The quality of the magazine is obvious, but it is the availability that really makes it stand out. As a free of charge publication, positioned prominently within major supermarkets, customers now see it as an essential pick up with their weekly shop. • Ormskirk

Birkenhead • • Liverpool • Caldy • Holyhead Isle of Anglesey

Alun Prichard, National Trust

‘Fun, attractive and above all a good read Yattar Yattar is a vibrant magazine that offers its readers entertainment, information and plenty of great ideas for Pwlleli • where to go and what to do in the region.’

Andrea Bristow GreenWood Forest Park, Gwynedd

‘We have advertised with Yattar Yattar magazine for three years and we have always found the staff really helpful. I feel that the magazine has a professional look to it with great content. We look forward to working with them on our advertising needs in the future.’

• Colwyn • Bangor • Caernarfon • Llanberis CONWY VALLEY

• Rhyl Holywell • • Queensferry • Mold FLINTSHIRE • Denbigh

• Runcorn

Porthmadog •

Blaenau • Ffestiniog

• Winsford

• Crewe • Beeston

• Ruthin • Cerrigydrudion • Wrexham • Corwen • Llangollen • Bala

• Harlech

• Oswestry

• Whitchurch

• Wem

• Telford • Shrewsbury

• Dolgellau

• Ironbridge • Welshpool • Machynlleth

• Newtown

• Church Stretton • Bishops Castle

• Llanidloes • Aberystwyth

With Yattar Yattar you get:

l two months’ coverage l displayed in all major supermarkets l 48,000 copies picked up = 110,000 readers! l fantastic print and design quality l highest readership in the region l coverage throughout Wales, Cheshire and Shropshire l lowest cost per reader of any local publication Yattar Yattar magazine covers Wales, Cheshire and Shropshire and attracts the biggest numbers of readers by a mile! Which means more people looking at your business. Businesses tell us the response rates they get with us are the best by far! Go online to for distribution details.

• Llandrindod Wells

Lucy Evans, marketing manager, Walford & North Shropshire College

‘We have worked with Yattar Yattar over the past three years. It’s been a great platform for us to promote open events in particular. It’s been good to see the magazine within the local community and I’ve noticed it in the local Tesco’s at the end of the tills.’

‘At Lucris we believe effective advertising is a very important element of running any business. We’ve very much enjoyed working with the friendly and inspired staff at Yattar Yattar magazine who have been so helpful in helping us to create some really impressive advertising for our products. As soon as Yattar Yattar went on the stands, we could see an immediate upturn in traffic to our online business. Getting people to notice you when you trade online can be the factor that decides whether your business flourishes or not.

• Warrington

• Frodsham • Chester


Louise Lyon, owner, Lucris, Chester

Jackie Vaughan, Healing Thyme, Whitchurch

‘We have been very pleased with our ongoing association with Yattar Yattar. We have been impressed with the content – Yattar Yattar has the look and feel of an expensive magazine, and our customers are always delighted to receive their copy. We have seen customers from a wider geographical area than previously, including people who have come from Wrexham.’

• Ludlow

Tom Hunt,marketing manager, Ludlow Food Centre

‘We have been advertising, submitting editorial and even doing competitions in Yattar Yattar for three years now and love being part of the magazine. We have had great response to being part of the magazine and especially like the fact that it seems to be everywhere!’

Katrina Morphet, marketing director Orthopaedic Hospital

‘Yattar Yattar is a great vehicle for explaining the range of services offered at the specialist orthopaedic hospital in Oswestry. It is a lively, colourful read. Patients in shropshire, Cheshire and Wales have commented on how helpful they find the articles and then are prompted to go to our hospital website to find out more.’

Want to find out more? Call our friendly team: (01978) 813 035, or email Do you have a story for our readers? Email


Keeping it in the family Mr Robin Banerjee of The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital (RJAH) speaks about knee and hip replacement


esearch has shown that osteoarthritis can run in the family. ‘People are much more likely to have arthritis if their parents did, in fact they are twice as likely to need surgery,’ explains Mr Banerjee, consultant orthopaedic surgeon at The Robert Jones and Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital in Oswestry, who has recently treated five members of the same family for knee and hip problems caused by arthritis. ‘Norman Chesters (75) was sent to me for revision of a hip replacement put in 20 years previously. The plastic cup wears with time producing above: the chester family – norman, small particles and cynthia, enid and the body’s defence neale, all patients system tries to remove of mr Banerjee them. They do this by releasing enzymes and other factors that damage and wear away the bone making the implant wear loose. This was so painful he couldn’t sleep and his leg became shorter so he couldn’t walk without crutches.

Second time around ‘Revision operations are more difficult and, in my opinion, should be performed by Fellowship trained surgeons. When we take out the old implant, we have to be careful not to damage the bone we have left so we use specially developed tools for the job. Even then there are defects in the bone which we need to fill. We use bone graft to fill smaller gaps or defects (from our bone bank – which many of our patients make a deposit into when they have their first hip replacement!) We also use titanium mesh to fill bigger gaps which is a new development – its special structure (like a honeycomb) makes it light and very strong and encourages the patient’s own bone to grow into it. When revising Norman’s hip replacement, we used bone graft and a titanium mesh to fill a large defect. After six months, his bone had grown into the titanium augment, making sure it remained secure.

‘For a primary hip replacement, a patient would usually stay in hospital for two to three days, but it can be much longer in revision surgery. The operation takes longer and it’s more complicated as we’re cutting through scar tissue. The risks are higher but we control them with careful anaesthetics, paracetamol and other painkillers. We use drugs to reduce bleeding and after the operation we get the patient up and moving as quickly as possible. In fact, the biggest factor in a patient’s recovery is a positive outlook, so I speak to them before surgery to make sure that they know what to expect.

a FamiLy aFFair ‘I performed a primary hip replacement on Cynthia (76), Norman’s wife, as well as a knee replacement on their son, Neale (53), while their daughter, Enid (56), is waiting for a total hip replacement under my care. I also treated Norman’s brother, Leonard, (65) who presented with pain in both knees, but normal knee x-rays. This is because of referred pain from his arthritic hips, both of which I replaced over a three month interval.’

detecting and treating artHritic HiPS ‘People usually come to us with pain, often in the groin, but arthritic hips can cause referred pain down to the knee, as seen in Leonard’s case. This wakes them at night, they struggle to bend down to tie their shoelaces, and they can’t drive or work. It’s a quality of life issue and most would rather deal with it now and get on with their lives rather than wait until the pain is unbearable. ‘The procedures and implants used for treating arthritic hips have improved dramatically over the years – total hip replacement has just been voted the most successful operation of the 21st century. We use implants made from different materials, including stainless steel, cobalt chrome, titanium, ceramic and plastic. The newer plastics are tougher now – they

‘The titanium mesh has a special structure (like a honeycomb) which encourages the patient’s own bone to grow into it’

mr robin david Banerjee MBChB (Liverpool), FRCS(Ed), FRCS (Orth), Cert Med Ed(Keele). mr Banerjee is a consultant orthopaedic Surgeon and assistant director of clinical Studies at rJaH, who specialises in hip and knee replacement and revision hip surgery. He was the 10th cavendish Hip Fellow and an honorary clinical lecturer at Sheffield Hallam University. He is also a member of the British Hip Society.

are hardened with radiation or treated with vitamin E, so they last longer. Ceramic bearings are becoming increasingly popular – they are both strong and very smooth. This means that they have a longer lifespan and so are suitable for younger patients, say in their thirties or forties. I never use metal on metal as there can be metal particles which can cause problems with erosion of bone and local tissue damage.

tHe rJaH ‘The beauty of working at RJAH is that we have everything we need on the shelf – it’s one of the best equipped specialist facilities in the UK. I feel very privileged to have been here for over four years as full-time joint replacement specialist. We perform over 2600 primary joint replacements and 400 revisions per year. I also play a key role in teaching in the hospital, where we train surgeons from all over the UK and abroad.’ y

For more information, contact the robert Jones and agnes Hunt orthopaedic Hospital nHS Foundation trust, oswestry on: 01691 404307 (Ludlow Private unit) 01691 404606 (nHS) January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 109

Going private could now be more affordable than you think with Spire Self-pay and the fixed price you will be given for your treatment means there will never be any extras. To get you started we’ve put some prices for treatment on our site.

01978 262462


The Pain Doctor We spoke to Dr Thomas Haag, consultant in pain management at Spire Yale Hospital in Wrexham, about helping sufferers of chronic pain alleviate the debilitating effects it can have on their lives tolerated medication is being taken at the appropriate dosing. Further treatment options often include injections such as epidurals, joint and nerve injections and radio-frequency treatments, all done as day-case-procedures. This is commonly followed by a short period of specialist pain physiotherapy to aid physical recovery.

Q. How do you define chronic pain? A. Pain that lasts for six months or longer and recurs over long periods is regarded as chronic pain. It can occur anywhere in your body and can range from mild discomfort to very severe pain that can impede your day-to-day activities. Q. How can such pain affect a patient’s life? A. Chronic pain negatively impacts all aspects of a patient’s life: physically, emotionally, socially and professionally. It is important to take this into account when devising a treatment plan. Around 22% of people in the UK currently suffer from chronic pain of some kind. Patients that come to see me have often been suffering for a long time – on average 5 to 10 years before being referred. It is well documented that early specialist assessment and intervention can largely prevent the detrimental effects of a pain condition such as dependency on medications, which are often not effective.

Q. What are radio-frequency treatments and how effective are they? A. Radio-frequency (RF) is a form of electrotherapy, which either interferes with nerve function or cuts the nerve itself. Radio-frequency treatments can be particularly effective for certain types of back, neck and leg pains which is backed up by good quality research, confirmed by my own outcome data. It can provide patients with a level of lasting pain relief they haven’t experienced for a long time. Radio-frequency can be an effective treatment option in other pain conditions including knee and hip joint pains which can’t be operated on or where surgery is deemed too risky or is not desired. It has also shown promising results in certain types of peripheral nerve pain, abdominal wall and facial pains. All RF treatments are done as day cases where patients can go home usually within four hours of the procedure. Q. Do you offer any treatment programmes at Spire? A. We are about to launch a Pain Management Programme (PMP). We think it’s the first of its kind in the private sector in the UK, having run a similar programme successfully in the Maelor Hospital, Wrexham (NHS) for a number of years. The programme is designed for patients who are still suffering from a considerable level of debilitating pain despite conventional treatment efforts. It has shown to be very suitable for patients who after years of pain suffering have adopted an unhealthy lifestyle with all its negative aspects such as obesity, due to an inability to be physically active, social

‘Chronic pain can negatively impact all aspects of a patient’s life’

Q. What is the process to treat chronic pain? A. Patients are first seen by a pain consultant of their choice or as recommended by their GP or specialist for a thorough assessment of their condition, where further investigations such as scans, blood tests and test blocks or injections may be required to make a diagnosis. This assessment results in a personalized treatment plan, which includes a medication review. The aim here is to rely on as little medication as possible, ensuring that only effective and

isolation (loneliness), relationship problems, hopelessness, depression, anxiety and drug or substance dependence. The programme is designed to run over eight weeks with a commitment of four hours per week. During the programme, we help patients to regain control over their lives again, build up their confidence and activity levels and help them get as much out of their lives as possible, despite their pain conditions. Well over 80% of patients completing similar programmes feel it was worthwhile, allowing them to be in control of their pain and not the pain in control of their lives. Research has shown that this approach can reduce pain disability considerably with lasting effects. A team of highly experienced professionals such as physiotherapist, psychotherapist, dietician and a pain doctor run the Pain Management Programme. Q. What should I do if I’m experiencing chronic pain? A. Speak to your GP to refer you to our Pain Service. We know that the sooner an effective treatment strategy is implemented the more successful we are to prevent the negative aspects of a chronic pain condition. Having said that, even long-term sufferers in the majority benefit from more effective treatments once properly assessed by pain specialists.


Dr Thomas Haag MD, FRCA, FFPMRCA is a consultant in pain management and anaesthesia. He is a member of the Royal College of Anaesthetists (RCOA), the Faculty of Pain Medicine (FPM), the European Society for Regional Anaesthesia and Pain Therapy (ESRA) and the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) where he was involved in the guidelines for neuropathic pain. He chairs the National Spinal Radio Frequency Registry and is actively involved in pain research and specialist education.

01978 262462 January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 111

A helping hand Relief from Dupuytren’s without the surgery

Nuffield Health Shrewsbury Hospital is pleased to introduce a pioneering new injection technique which is suitable for some patients with Dupuytren’s contracture. Available with Consultant Hand Surgeon Mr Cormac Kelly the treatment is administered in an outpatients setting, giving you the freedom of: • No surgery

• No physiotherapy

• No open wound

• Little disruption to work or lifestyle

For further information please contact 01743 818 967 or e-mail Don’t just go private, go personal.

0315_Dupuytrens Advert_A4.indd 1

20/11/2013 15:38


In safe hands Mr Cormac Kelly, a consultant trauma and orthopaedic surgeon at Nuffield Health Shrewsbury Hospital, tells us about problems that people experience with their hands and how to treat them Q. I wake up most nights with pins and needles in my fingers. What could this be and how can I prevent it? A. This condition could be carpal tunnel syndrome, which is when compression of the median nerve at the wrist causes pain and pins and needles, usually confined to the middle finger, index finger and thumb. Patients often wake up during the night with burning pins and needles. They also can have problems manipulating small objects such as change or buttons due to lack of sensation in the tips of their fingers. Simple treatments for carpal tunnel syndrome can include removable Velcro wrist splints to be worn at night time. If simple measures fail, injections of steroids are sometimes used. If that also fails, we would perform surgery to release the pressure. The operation on the wrist is performed under local anaesthetic. This works in nine out of ten cases, but in very long-standing problems, surgery may not relieve the symptoms. After surgery, the majority of patients find that the sensation of pins and needles is reduced within days, although feelings of numbness may take longer to go away. Q. I have pain at the base of my thumb when gripping or doing any forceful pinching activity. What could it be? A. This situation needs to be appraised by a hand specialist and anyone suffering from it will likely need an x-ray. One of the most common causes is osteoarthritis at the base of the thumb. Simple measures to treat this include thumb splints, painkillers and antiinflammatory drugs to treat the symptoms of arthritis. In severe problems, surgery to remove the arthritic bone can be helpful (usually we would remove the trapezium bone of the thumb). Most patients get good pain relief after surgery, although they can be left with numbness of the thumb. In younger patients, fusion may be a better option, which means stiffening the joint to stop movement.

can be seen when there is arthritis in the joint, but these swellings are usually innocent. The ridging of the nail occurs because the swelling can put pressure on the nail. Most of these cysts can be left alone, however, larger swellings can be uncomfortable and unsightly, so can be considered for removal. It’s advisable that all lumps are assessed by your GP. If your GP is concerned, he may refer you to a hand specialist. Q. My ring finger gets locked when bent. It is really painful to straighten as it clicks out. What is this? A. This is likely to be a ‘trigger finger’ and can affect any finger, though it most commonly affects the ring finger. It is sometimes associated with diabetes and inflammatory arthritis such as rheumatoid arthritis. Treatment may include temporary splinting or a steroid injection. If simple treatment fails, referral to a hand surgeon is appropriate to consider release of the tight tendon. The surgery is usually a day case under local anaesthetic.

‘Carpal tunnel syndrome is compression of the median nerve at the wrist causing pain, and pins and needles’

Q. I have a swelling on the tip of my index finger and it seems to cause ridging of my nail. What is it? A. This is a common problem and is often called a ganglion or mucous cyst which

Q. My little finger has started to bend up into the palm and is getting in the way. Why is this happening? A. This is possibly a condition called Dupuytren’s disease. This condition causes a thickening and contraction of tissues of the palm, causing the fingers to slowly bend and making it difficult or even painful to straighten them. The little finger is the most commonly affected. In many cases, the condition is not progressive, simply a nuisance. In progressive conditions, referral to a hand specialist is appropriate. Surgery may be required to release the tight connective tissues. Alternatively, treatment with collagenase and manipulation may be appropriate. The collagenase dissolves part of the thickened tissue over 24 to 48 hours. Manipulation is then required under local anaesthetic by a surgeon to loosen up the tissue.

Q. Why should I choose to be treated at Nuffield Shrewsbury? A. Nuffield Shrewsbury strives to give patients very personal care and pride themselves on achieving this, plus it’s free to park! The hospital is located on the outskirts of Shrewsbury, so it’s convenient for patients. The bright, pleasant surroundings mean that patients have the best experience possible and, best of all, they don’t have to wait for treatment. y To make an appointment with Mr Kelly, contact the hospital’s out-patient bookings department on 01743 282505

Mr Cormac Kelly MB BCh, BAO (Trinity Dublin), FRCS Ed (Orth), FRCSI

Mr Kelly is a consultant trauma and orthopaedic surgeon who specialises in conservative and surgical management of all upper limb problems, shoulder pain and arthritis, joint replacement of shoulder and hand, keyhole surgery to shoulder, elbow and wrist, nerve compressive lesions, carpal tunnel syndrome, non-union of fractures in the upper limb, rotator cuff tears and tendonitis, tennis elbow syndrome and shoulder dislocation. He is the secretary of the British Shoulder and Elbow Society and a member of the British Orthopaedic Association and the British Society for Surgery of the Hand.

January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 113





20th March – 20th April Uranus changes signs every seven years and is now travelling directly through Aries. What does this mean for you? Surprises, changes of routine and unexpected journeys. You’ve clocked up plenty of mileage recently so use cruise control and slow down. You’ve obligations to those around you but you’ve obligations to yourself too, look at these and act upon them.


20th April – 21st May January brings a new moon in Capricorn highlighting your solar chart where further education is concerned. Life has hard lessons to learn but these should be regarded as strengthening character because they bring wisdom and maturity. There are three educations: parental, schooling and the world, it’s from the latter we gain most and it’s presently teaching you.


21st May – 21st June There’s opportunity now to strengthen joint resources and make future plans. February brings communication to the fore and you may find yourself repeating the same words over again. Messages don’t get through, wires get crossed and tempers fray. Ride this cycle out and apologise for delays even if they’re not your fault. Good public relations are what you need now.


21st June – 23rd July A full moon activates sensitivities so in mid-January be prepared for emotional turmoil and mood change. Don’t allow negativity to develop, throw that tee shirt away! Jupiter now in Cancer only happens every twelve years and is a golden opportunity to develop your skills so make hay while the sun shines and, as the ancients say, the father of the gods will deliver!


23rd July – 23rd August The first two months of the year are never the best for you, you’re a sunny spirit so climatically this time of year isn’t your best. Mid-February will however bring a turning point. It won’t mean blazing sunshine at last, it’s more of a heart-centred warmth that will fire you up, something’s brewing and the heat is on.


23rd August – 23rd September You’re often accused of narrow mindedness but it’s the desire to be precise and precision is what’s required now. Those who say you’re not seeing the wood for the trees need to bite their tongues. True at times perhaps, but look around too much now and you’ll miss what’s been staring you in the face all winter, problem-reaction-solution!


23rd September-22nd October The Galactic Centre is a term used to denote the centre of gravity for our galaxy, but you’re the centre of your universe where events are spiralling out of control. Saturn being in a money angle of your chart can be earth shattering but it’s only a phase and all phases pass, so stay grounded, don’t worry, and things will settle down in good time.


23rd October – 22nd November Your sign is the only one with two images to express it, the scorpion and the eagle. One can sting itself to death and the other rise above everything and everyone. It’s the latter you need to embrace as Saturn continues its transit through your sign so spread your wings and fly upwards until you soar above the present manipulation affecting your life.


22nd November – 21st December The full moon in Leo in February benefits you because it’s in Leo, another fire sign, making a marvellous trine in your solar chart. Your mojo will be boosted and your entire system feeling that 2014 is going to be a good year. As one who looks for opportunities they abound especially where love is concerned. A heartfelt time then.


21st December – 20th January Close relationships are centre stage with a bit of power play going on although not necessarily in a negative sense. Either way, there’s an extra intensity that’s pulling passion into your orbit although you may be playing a game of poker with it! Hopefully you’ve got an ace up your sleeve as you don’t want to lose the hand you’re presently playing!


20th January – 19th February You’re well acquainted with change and although it’s sometimes uncomfortable, you deal with it better than most. Just as well because your whole network of communications has been unpredictable and tiresome. This is likely to keep up until the end of February when hopefully you’ll be able to sort out the chaos and find it wasn’t as bad after all!


19th February – 20th March I don’t make predictions as such, but I’m making an exception for you. A wish is about to become a reality but it’s secret so I won’t expose it here. One cautionary note, make absolutely sure it’s what you want in case all’s not what it seems. Neptune in Pisces conjures up the dream factory, but has its nightmares too!

Profile of Gloria Mans Gloria was trained in the art of astrology at the prestigious

Faculty of Astrological Studies in London. This involved astronomy and the study of longitude and latitude of planets and the ‘relations’ they make through what are called ‘angles’. Astrology is also about intuition and understanding. Gloria has worked for many celebrities – Sally Burton, Richard Burton’s widow says: ‘Gloria makes a difference to your life.’ Other clients have included Jerry Hall and David Bailey., you can email

114 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014


get yo ur cop Yattar y of Yattar direct to you rd to pag oor – head e 100 or call 0

1978 8


Coming Next Issue... to sub


Pick up your copy of the March/April 2014 issue of Yattar Yattar in your local supermarket to make sure that you don’t miss these great features! PlAn Your Wedding We help to take the headache out of making your wedding plans as we talk to some of the best local wedding venues and suppliers.


locAl SteAM rAilWAYS Whether you’re a train enthusiast or just looking for a great day out with the kids, the many local steam railways have plenty to offer. We look at our local railways and the history behind them.

Yattar Yattar helps to keep you up to date with everything local and, best of all, it’s completely free to pick up in supermarkets! So, whether you’re looking for local events, special offers, advice for improving your home and plenty more, or just looking for a good read, make sure you grab the next edition! For the best of Wales, Cheshire and Shropshire, keep an eye out for the March/ April 2014 issue of Yattar Yattar in a supermarket near you from the first week of March onwards!

gArdening SeASon Spring is upon us, so grab your gardening gloves and head outside. We tell you everything you need to know to get your garden looking great, plus advice from the experts.



eASter egg-StrAvAgAnzA Special events throughout the region, where to see the Easter bunny and of course plenty of chocolate!


Advertisers – with each issue of Yattar Yattar you get: l two months’ coverage l displayed in all major supermarkets l 48,000 copies picked up giving you 110,000 readers! l Fantastic print and design quality l Highest readership in the region l coverage throughout Wales, cheshire and Shropshire

As well as our fantastic regulars in every issue: What’s On, Yattar Holidays, Yattar Active, Food Tasters, Arts Corner, Homes and Gardens, Vets and Wildlife, Yattar Celebrities, Fashion & Accessories, Schools News, Volunteering, Kids’ Corner, Book Club, Health and Beauty, Health Advice, and our great Competitions! Get in touch – just send an email to

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Other local glossy magazines have less than 3,000 copies picked up. There are simply a lot more people looking at your business when you’re featured in Yattar Yattar!

Birkenhead • • Liverpool • Caldy • Holyhead Isle of Anglesey

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Holywell • • Queensferry • Mold FLINTSHIRE • Denbigh

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Yattar Yattar magazine attracts the biggest numbers of readers per issue by a mile!

To find out more, call 01978 813035 or email

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01341 250107




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HOw TO ENTER Simply answer the following question and send us the form by February 17th: yattar yattar, Virgin Balloons Competition, Unit 13, Vauxhall Industrial Estate, Ruabon, wrexham, LL14 6HA. We’ve teamed up with Virgin Balloon Flights to offer you the chance to win an unforgettable Champagne balloon flight for two worth £238! A Virgin Balloon Flight is a unique way to explore beautiful Britain and the perfect Valentines gift for that special someone. The lucky winner will get a hot air balloon flight of around an hour for two, a traditional Champagne toast (or soft drink) after landing and a flight certificate endorsed by Sir Richard Branson. The winner will be given a flight voucher with 12 months to book their flight and can choose from over 100 UK locations. For your chance to win, just circle the right answer to the following question: Richard Branson achieved a world record in which mode of transport? a) Space shuttle b) Submarine c) Balloon

A FRESH MEAT HAMPER WORTH OVER £75! HOw TO ENTER Simply answer the following question and send us the form

Name ........................................................................................... by February 17th: yattar yattar, Bwydlyn Competition, Unit 13, Vauxhall Address ........................................................................................ ....................................................................................................... ....................................................................................................... ............................................. Postcode ....................................... Contact number: ....................................................................... Email (please complete)................................................................... PLEASE DO NOT SEND ME ANY OTHER INFORMATION


Industrial Estate, Ruabon, wrexham, LL14 6HA. To celebrate the launch of their new website, Bwydlyn, part of Harlech Foodservice, are giving away a hamper of fresh, high quality meat worth over £75 to one lucky winner. Bwydlyn first opened its door in Pwllheli in 1996 and today is still a favourite on the high street amongst locals and visitors. Bwydlyn are specialists in 21 day matured Welsh Beef and superior Welsh lamb. They also offer an exceptional range of fresh meats in store and online at For your chance to win, just circle the right answer to the following question: In what year did Bwydlyn first open its doors? a) 1996 b) 2000 c) 2010

A WOODLAND GLIDE EXPERIENCE! HOw TO ENTER Simply answer the following question and send us the form

Name ........................................................................................... by February 17th: yattar yattar, Cheshire Segway Competition, Unit 13, Address ........................................................................................ ....................................................................................................... ....................................................................................................... ............................................. Postcode ....................................... Contact number: ....................................................................... Email (please complete)................................................................... PLEASE DO NOT SEND ME ANY OTHER INFORMATION

Vauxhall Industrial Estate, Ruabon, wrexham, LL14 6HA. Cheshire Segway, who are based in the Blakemere Craft Centre in Sandiway, Northwich, are giving one lucky winner a Segway woodland glide experience! The winner will be able to explore over 15 acres of Cheshire woodlands in a unique way and see the surrounding countryside from a whole new perspective! Cheshire Segway also offer a variety of Segway experiences to suit everyone – from 10 minute taster sessions to hour-long experiences. Visit to find out more. For your chance to win, just circle the right answer to the following question: How many wheels does a Segway have? a) 6 b) 4 c) 2

CONgRATULATIONS TO OUR LUCky wINNERS FROM THE NOVEMBER/DECEMBER 2013 ISSUE! wales Rally gB Tickets: Charles Hughes, Mold Louise Hampson, Whitchurch

Thomas Sabo Charm Bracelet: Veronica Dixon

Thomas Sabo Eau de Parfum: Sian Amies

RULES OF THE COMPETITIONS DATA PROTECTION NOTICE Brillybox Publishing and Media Ltd will use your information for administration and analysis purposes and may contact you from time to time with relevant offers, information or for research purposes. Your details will not be passed on to third parties except the sponsors of these competitions. Please tick the relevant box if you do not wish to be contacted. COMPETITION RULES The promoters of these competitions is Brillybox Publishing & Media Ltd, CDC Distribution Centre, Unit 13, Vauxhall, Industrial Estate, Ruabon, Wrexham. LL14 6HA. The competitions are open to all readers of our magazine and viewers of our websites except employees of the prize providers or Brillybox Publishing & Media Ltd and their immediate families. The winner will be the first person or persons drawn after the closing date who has completed the correct answer. No cash alternative is available. The winners names can be obtained by writing to the competition address with a self-addressed envelope after the closing date. The winner agrees to participate in any follow-up publicity. Brillybox Publishing may print the name only of entrants to this competition in subsequent issue(s) of Yattar Yattar. This is to enable competition entrants to fairly claim a promotional offer, for competition entrants only. By entering this competition you are giving permission for Brillybox to print your name only. No personal information will be printed. No purchase necessary, answers on a postcard are accepted.

118 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014


yattarchatter Your news, views and opinions are welcome – write to us at Yattar Yattar, Brillybox Publishing, CDC Distribution Centre, Unit 13, Vauxhall Industrial Estate, Ruabon, Wrexham LL14 6HA or email to Please note we can only publish edited extracts from lengthy letters. Although we do not publish addresses, we do not publish any anonymous correspondence.

hh h

hh r e Star lett h

the Miracle of life

healthy option?

your article about the world being a better place if god was a woman was very thought provoking. We have a system where everything eats something else, and if god really loves us then his version of love is not mine. denniS dUggAn

My father has been a BUPA member for decades and yet despite increasing his premiums, they are refusing the pay for a surgical procedure that the specialist has deemed necessary. Surely this is not fair? Mr P. Wiley, WArrington I have experienced the same problem. I have been with BUPA for 37 years and as I have aged they have raised my premium to a staggering £6,700 per annum, yet when it came to having my knees done (cost £4,090) they refused to pay. The sad fact is that BUPA is no better than the banks, keen to take your money but reluctant to pay out. I suggest you follow my example – cancel your membership and save the premiums which will cover the cost of anything but the most serious treatments for which the NHS is better equipped to handle anyway. BUPA like many companies does not reward loyalty but gives the best deals to new members.

working for free

Letters sent to Yattar Yattar magazine may be edited due to space constraints

you say that Yattar Yattar is a not-for-profit community magazine but do you get paid for being editor? Mr. C. reynoldS, Mid WAleS Not a single penny! Yattar has a special place in my heart and, although we lost the hotels because the bank went back on their promise, we still operate four international mail order companies, a medical facility, internet and telephone services that can afford to subsidise it. For the first time in our long history our companies now do more business outside of the UK than in it, which saddens me somewhat. Just as all our other writers, I contribute my services for free and that philosophy ensures that every writer is passionate about what they do. We have no political leanings or vested interests so we can speak freely and openly without fear of favour.

it’s just no fracking good

What do you make of the energy companies increases and the politicians’ reactions? Mr g deWhUrSt, CheShire My opinion of politicians is that they promise us everything we want prior to a general election and then, once elected, forget all about

us ordinary folk. My belief is that all essential state services should belong to us, the taxpayer. It is mad to sell off electricity, water, railways and roads to foreign powers and we could so easily reduce the cost of energy by fracking and nuclear power. Why would we want to be beholden to Russia for gas and the Middle East for oil? How can it be right for the poor to have to choose between eating and heating while we give billions of foreign aid to countries wasting billions on developing nuclear weapons. If there is a natural disaster we should help out but other than that we should ensure that we look after our own first and foremost. Why are we subsidising troops stationed in Germany? Bring all our heroes home! We only need to defend the UK and we are not the world’s policemen. With a few bold moves we could solve our financial deficit. Stop foreign aid to those that don’t need it, stop foreign wars and let’s look after our own!

It is strange that at a time we can look back in time 13 billion years, almost to the big bang and see the vastness of space, that many still believe that a God created us. The Voyager 1 spacecraft after 32 years of travelling at around 17,500 mile an hour just leaving our solar system and will take another 400 years to reach our nearest neighbour Andromeda. Just before this happened, Houston rotated it and took a picture of earth which appears as a pinprick. Why is it that we are so full of our own self-importance to think that out of billions of stars (ours being the sun) and trillions of planets we are something special? We are not, we are simply very, very lucky. Earth is in the ‘Goldilocks’ zone – a bit nearer to the sun and we would fry, a bit further away and we would freeze. Mankind has evolved by good fortune. No water would equal no humans, and if there hadn’t been the dinosaur extinction we wouldn’t exist either. If we do not destroy ourselves beforehand, then in about another 6 billion years the sun will burn itself out to become a death star but not before swallowing up our plant and all on it so enjoy life while you can and think just how lucky we are.

a big thank you!

thank you for the reply to my letter asking for details about prosthetic legs. We have now been in touch with the centre in Birmingham and are hoping our granddaughter will soon have a new leg that she can go dancing and enjoying herself with. thanks for the trouble you took getting us the information. We enjoy your magazine and wish you every success. MArion WAlker, WrexhAM

More letters January/February 2014 yattaryattar magazine 119

in answer to Mr and Mrs Richards who were looking for help with their new computer in last issue’s letters, could you also suggest that they contact their local library as they may well run computer courses. i have attended quite a few such courses in the past few years in north Wales. cost is usually quite reasonable. PaM collins, PRestatyn.

FACEbOOK COmmENTS ‘Wow, what a superb magazine what a great issue so much good info and events. congratulations to all who are responsible for the making of this it’s a real credit to you all. incidentally – loved the art pages – great work all!’ laRRie Beattie ‘Just wanted to say that i love your magazine. it is always crammed with lots of interesting items and places to visit. thank you, its makes my day!’ PaMela MeRRicK ‘thank you to all the ‘yattar yattar’ team for having me last week! i really enjoyed working with you all... such a friendly office! I’m looking forward to seeing the new issue.’ hattie thoRPe-GunneR ‘Great to hear from my sister that Yattar Yattar is electronic, reading it here in south sudan!’ KiM oZano ‘Just saw our wonderful story in your well read magazine!’ PoRt sunliGht VillaGe MuseuM ‘thanks Yattar Yattar for the competition win, fabulous day out, brilliant magazine i’ll look out for the summer issue!’ catheRine WaRBuRton FolloW us on FaceBooK – Just seaRch ‘yattaR’ and liKe ouR PaGe!


Now Wash Your Hands

By Stephanie Anne Lloyd

You may think your hands are clean, they certainly are not and a lot of the germs and infections and bad bacteria get into your body when you touch your mouth. In a recent large demographic survey 10% admitted that didn’t wash their hands, another 10% admitted that they just rinsed their hands, whilst another 40% stated that they only washed their hands for 10 seconds, half the time it takes to kill germs and my guess is that a lot of people lied when asked so the percentages might be significantly higher. A number of deaths during child birth and surgery turned out to be as a result of surgeons and midwives not having germ free clean hands. Then came penicillin and scrubbing in the nineteenth century and the whole human family thought they were saved – WRONG! The last world pandemic was in 1918 when millions died from Spanish Flu and the sad fact is that penicillin and other antibiotics are ‘Our bodies are bombarded becoming less effective from over use both in humans and in animals raised for every day, and our immune food so the time bomb clock ticks down system is remarkably adept to the next pandemic. at protecting us from disease, To protect your own health you need to but it does no harm to give it a follow these golden rules: Wash your hands using soap helping hand’ vigorously for no less than 20 seconds. You may want to scrub under your fingernails as well. Keep washing them or use antiseptic wipes at every opportunity because toilet doors, shopping trolleys, phones and handrails, in fact practically everything you touch is contaminated so is a source of potential infection. Try to keep your hands away from your mouth, nose and eyes. If someone sneezes, try to distance yourself. Avoid ice cubes in pubs and sharing in common bowls of nuts and similar traditional offerings in Indian restaurants and some bars. Considering how our bodies are bombarded every day, our immune system is remarkably adept at protecting us from disease, but it does no harm to give it a helping hand. You should ensure that you consume a balanced diet centred around fresh vegetables, fish, meat, cheese (Edam is particularly good for you) and fruit but mainly in the form of berries.

‘Computer says yes you Can!’

Dear Yattar Yattar,

A big thank you to Yattar Yattar! I won a break for two at St George’s Hotel, Llandudno in the September/October issue and we have now booked our stay – we are very excited and just wanted to give our thanks for this lovely prize! John McKinney, Mid Wales

120 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

Enjoy a lea

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The Lu The Ro


yattaryattar on

Love and Marriage

…go together like a horse and carriage. Or do they? BY Stephanie anne LLoYD affirmative, then never let him go because men like that are like a diamond, a girl’s best friend and very rare and valuable. Most men are doomed to fail in enduring satisfying relationships, there are those who for religious reasons stay faithful and also those with a lower than normal sex drive. The golden rule is that the more successful a man is, the higher his sex drive is likely to be. This is because testosterone also provides the drive to succeed. The good news is that testosterone levels decrease quite rapidly from the age of 30, so they tend to become more faithful as they age.

now here’S what You neeD to Do if it’S not too Late:


r so the song says, but remember on long journeys the horses are changed to fresh ones at staging posts. There is a mismatch between the sexual appetite of men and women. Both genders sexual desires are governed primarily by the hormone testosterone and men just have a lot more of it. Whereas a woman’s sexual desire is aroused by affection, it varies with age, periods, post natal hormone imbalances, a man just thinks about sex almost continuously. After a few drinks any willing woman is irresistible. From puberty onwards his brain is hard-wired to his sexual desires and just the sight of a pretty woman is enough to trigger a reaction.

public. They will still want their partner to stand by them because they don’t usually want to leave the marital home especially if children are involved. What they really want is a mother, homemaker, a housekeeper and babysitter who becomes a sex-kitten as soon as she enters the bedroom. With the realisation that this is a long-term impossibility they resort to spice up their life with other. Commitment is just not a male trait and because they are able to live their lives in separate unconnected boxes, men avoid the guilt and anguish that a wife would feel. There is no sense of betrayal because immediately after sex all he wants to do is go home. The true sense of whether any man truly loves you, especially after a long relationship is summed up by your answers to the following questions. Does he do spontaneous romantic things? Does he make sure that you are sexually satisfied? After sex does he still want to snuggle and cuddle you? Is he just as affectionate after sex than as before? Does he want to go to sleep and wake up with you in his arms? If you can truthfully answer all in the

‘The true sense of whether any man truly loves you is summed up by your answers to the following questions…’

the Spice of Life Men are simply not programmed to handle long-term commitment of a sexual nature. What some men really want is to have their cake but be able to nibble at others now and again. All they need is the opportunity, Dutch courage (alcohol) and their brain whirrs into action over-riding their big brain. Just look at the high profile men laid low by an indiscretion becoming

122 yattaryattar magazine January/February 2014

1. Don’t chase him, men are hunters and want to catch and seduce you. 2. Don’t have sex too soon, men like a challenge and the vision is always more enticing, so reel him in slowly. 3. Men do not want to marry promiscuous women especially if they have slept with his friends. 4. Do not question him too closely about what he has been doing, he will start being evasive as men need some space they call their own. 5. Do not talk about moving in together, weddings, etc. Commitment scares men, they need time to think it was their idea. 6. Be unavailable sometimes, don’t let him think that you are waiting for the phone to ring. Washing your hair works well. 7. Do not let him change you. If he tries he really wants someone else. 8. Do not get involved with a controlling, jealous or violent man. 9. Do not get involved with any man that spends most of his time in a pub. 10. Don’t settle for second best, if and when true love arrives you will know, so many women end up with second best. 11. You will remember anniversaries of the first time you kissed, got married etc. so find a subtle way to remind him as surely as eggs are eggs he will forget. 12. Do not try and change him, if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck, then that is what you are going to get, so get real and move on quickly. Best wishes in finding your very own true soul mate.


lose the Blues

Banish those Winter Blues and indulge in some ‘me’ time at the Quay hotel and spa 2 night stay for only £130 per person, including: •

Daily Full Welsh breakfast

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4 course evening meal plus coffee on one evening

Add a 3rd consecutive night from £95 bed and breakfast

2 course lunch taken from our ‘Quay Time to Dine’ menu on one day

Stay 4 nights or more (including Sunday) and receive a complimentary room upgrade, plus a 10% discount

Book online and enter promo code loseBlues

escape spa pacKage Enjoy an indulgent spa break at the Quay Hotel and Spa, including: •

Overnight accommodation

4 course evening meal in our Grill Room

Full Welsh breakfast

Pre-selected spa treatments

£130 per person To book either of the above or to find out more, contact us on

01492 564 100 or email


Quay Hotel and Spa

The Quay Hotel and Spa, Deganwy Quay, Deganwy, Conwy, LL31 9DJ

This year we are commemorating our 50�� anniversary as your local, independent travel specialist …what are you celebrating in 2014? Wedding Anniversary Landmark birthday Family reunion Retirement

Make it extra special with free VIP Lounge passes at your UK departure airport* * Simply telephone, email or visit Delmar World before 1st March 2014 and mention Yattar Yattar. Please provide your name, address and postcode plus details of your forthcoming special occasion (if known). Free airport VIP Lounge passes will be provided for each person who books a holiday inclusive of flights and a minimum of 7 nights accommodation through Delmar World for a departure in 2014. No cash value but a suitable alternative will be provided for cruise bookings departing from the UK. Photograph courtesy of Lux Resorts

Phone: 01978853886 or email: Visit Delmar World: 54-56 Chester Road, Gresford, LL12 8NE

Yattar Yattar Jan-Feb 2014  

The new issue of Yattar Yattar for 2014!

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