Inspirational Birmingham Spring/Summer 2019

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Warwickshire & Birmingham


Warwickshire & Birmingham


Sophia Hayes

Deputy Editor

Karen Jones

Sales Director

Sophia Hayes

Features Editor

Frankie Arnold

Advertising Executives

Roxanna Hayes Alis0n Findley

Features Writers

Senior Designer

Rebecca Hales Luke Vials Victoria-Rose Sutcliffe Ross Ayling Rebecca Edwards Jeremy Lewis Kristian Goodeve

Sophia Hayes Editor

Karen Jones Deputy Editor

Liam Creek Geoff Sanders Sophie Oates

I’m pleased to welcome you all to the latest edition of Inspirational Warwickshire and Birmingham.


Kristian Goodeve Antonia Doyle

Web Development

Amad Tababa Joris Girdzijauskas Tatenda Chuma Van Duong

I am personally thrilled to welcome Karen to the magazine team where she will play a crucial role in expanding our reach and bringing a positive experience to you, our readers. Please take the time to read more about Karen on page 8 where we take a closer look at the wealth of experience she will be bringing to the future of our magazine.



Libby Johnson Robert Johnson Richard Vickery Tara Robinson Katie Niland Gail Webb Paula Moreton David Pardoe

For mailing list and subscription enquiries please visit For advertising enquiries please contact: Sophia Hayes 08453 31 30 31

You may have noticed we are sporting a new name and that is thanks to our newly appointed Deputy Editor, Karen Jones.

Back to this edition and the arrival of our spring/summer pages means that we are now officially ready for those lighter nights and with a bit of luck some sunshine! As always, the focal point of the magazine is our cover feature which this time takes a look at the wonderful career of Natalie Dormer. From Game of Thrones to The Hunger Games, Natalie has quickly become one of the biggest names of TV screens and the Hollywood scene, so we very much enjoyed charting her journey so far. We have plenty of other articles to get you all into the summer mood, and the best place to start is the Fashion & Entertainment section where you can get inspiration for your summer wardrobe thanks to our Harvey Nichols style guides. This section also features an article on the one and only Karl Lagerfeld. Earlier this year the fashion world was rocked when the designer sadly passed away and so we pay homage to a legend by looking back on how he helped shape an industry. Not got that summer trip booked yet? Then look no further than the pages in Travel & Lifestyle where we give you the lowdown on the things to do should you be pondering a city break to Berlin. Should you be looking to make the most of the long summer evenings, the Food & Drink guide details the very best places to dine out in the region as well as providing a rundown of the mustattend gin festivals taking place throughout the season. As always, the latter pages of the magazine cover the movements of the West Midlands’ business community as well as a glimpse into the fantastic events we have attended, and hosted, within our social pages. I hope you all enjoy perusing through your copy of Inspirational Warwickshire and Birmingham.

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Barrington House, Leake Road, Costock, Loughborough, Leicestershire LE12 6XA Tel: 08453 31 30 31 Fax: 08453 31 30 32

The Hayes family (from l-r): Matthew Hayes (Managing Director), Jack Hayes (Director), Donna Hayes (Director), John Hayes (CEO), Roxanna Hayes (Director), Sophia Hayes (Sales Director) and Louisa Hayes (Director).

Please note: Inspirational magazine is fully protected by copyright; no part of this magazine may be reproduced or reprinted without the complete and expressed permission of the publisher. The greatest care has been taken to ensure accuracy, however there can be no liability accepted by the publisher for errors or omissions. Inspirational Magazine can under no circumstances be held responsible for any materials, matter or photographical copy submitted for publication or not within the magazine. We cannot be held liable or responsible for any breaches of copyright from adverts, materials, photography or any other matter supplied by third parties. The views and opinions expressed within this magazine are not necessarily those of the publisher or indeed Inspirational Magazine or any featured parties.

A MILL I O N MI L E S FROM E V E RY DAY The perfect retreat. A twist on tradition. The clatter of hooves. The rolling countryside. The miles of possibility. The feeling of home. Coworth Park.

Perfection just happens.

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Natalie Dormer..................................................................................................................... 10 The inside story of one of Britain’s brightest acting talents

Bespoke Tailor....................................................................................................................... 22 A sartorial service for the refined gentleman

Harvey Nichols Style Guides...........................................................................................24 The best seasonal picks for men and women

Summer Essentials..............................................................................................................30 The beauty products and accessories you need to pack this summer

Faith Tucker........................................................................................................................... 34 A look at 2019’s Britain’s Got Talent operatic star

Andy Abraham......................................................................................................................36 The jazz artist that is fresh from his UK tour


BEAUTY AND HEALTH Highfield Dental.................................................................................................................. 40 Five star dentistry and facial rejuvenation

Geiko Hair Salon..................................................................................................................42 Stylish hairdressing in the heart of Leamington Spa

SPORTING WORLD Cricket World Cup..............................................................................................................48 The low-down on cricket’s most exciting annual event


Farmfoods British Par 3 Championship.......................................................................50 The Midlands’ golfing tournament returns

Farmfoods European Senior Masters........................................................................... 54 A look ahead to the eagerly anticipated golf championship

Farmfoods European Legends Links Championship............................................. 58 The Cornish coast welcomes the new Staysure Tour event


TRAVEL AND LIFESTYLE Blue Waters Resort & Spa................................................................................................66 Escape to the sandy beaches of Antigua

Best Western Hotels...........................................................................................................70 A glimpse into two of the West Midlands’ most luxurious stays

Eden Hall Collection .........................................................................................................82 The most luxurious hotel collection in the country

Irnham hall.............................................................................................................................84 Discover the exclusive wedding venue and stunning orangery




FOOD AND DRINK Finest Catch...........................................................................................................................88 The Malt Shovel at Barston............................................................................................. 90 Gin Festivals Near You.......................................................................................................92 Shawbury Wine....................................................................................................................96


THE HOME COLLECTION Grow Your Own ..................................................................................................................98 A modern guide to growing fruit and veg

Poggenpohl......................................................................................................................... 100 Designer kitchens with a German touch

Wagner..................................................................................................................................108 The world’s finest paint tech solutions


SOCIAL AND NETWORKING Networking Breakfast at the Gherkin with Piers Linney Harvey Nichols Fashion Show Coventry Telegraph Business Awards Birmingham Post Business Awards


BUSINESS MATTERS Prosperity Wealth...............................................................................................................119 Independent financial advisers in Brierley Hill

Bloc Digital...........................................................................................................................120 Cutting edge digital innovation

Thomas International........................................................................................................122 Gain a deeper understanding of your company’s culture

Everyman Racing............................................................................................................... 128 Thrilling driving experiences in the West Midlands

Quest......................................................................................................................................130 A consultancy you can trust

adi Group...............................................................................................................................132 An insight into the leading engineering firm’s new offices



Bringing luxury lifestyle expertise to Inspirational Warwickshire and Birmingham Inspirational Warwickshire and Birmingham magazine has long been committed to producing quality content for readers on a bi-annual basis.

am really enjoying working with such a passionate team on a premium product that I firmly believe in.

Now, in-line with this spring/summer edition, everyone at the magazine is delighted to welcome the widely-respected Warwickshire-based magazine editor Karen Jones to the team.

“I’m excited to bring my wealth of regional knowledge and experience to the bi-annual title. I look forward to broadening the readership and building new relationships for the publication. It’s great to be back doing what I do best!”

Karen joins the magazine as Deputy Editor and brings a knowledge of the luxury lifestyle sector that is second to none thanks to previously heading up two prestigious titles – Live 24 Seven and Touch Base Magazine.

Sophia Hayes, Editor added: “Inspirational Warwickshire and Birmingham has established itself as one of the country’s finest glossy magazines and has successfully built a readership of over 85,000.

She incorporated her knowledge of the region and passion for generating exciting content for readers as editor of Live 24-Seven – a luxury resource for both local people and businesses.

“We’re looking forward to working with Karen to further develop our publication whilst continuing to target those who appreciate the finer things in life.”

Following this, she went on to establish and become editor of glamorous lifestyle publication Touch Base Magazine. She spent seven years successfully building the prestige of the publication before taking a career break to concentrate on family matters. But, after five years, she is back and ready to take Inspirational Warwickshire and Birmingham to the next level! Of her new role Karen said: “I am delighted to be involved with such a luxurious magazine for high net worth individuals. I

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When she’s not busy building relationships with key businesses in the region, Karen engages in a range of charity work. She proudly sits on the committee of the Giles Trust Brain Tumour Charity where she helps raise money for vital equipment and funding research in the fight against brain tumours. As well as this, she has and continues to raise money for the Teenage Cancer Trust. Everyone at the magazine wishes Karen the best of luck in her new role and look forward to working with her long into the future.

INDULGENCE AWAITS The Art Deco glamour. The signature spa treatments. The sense of serenity. The calm amongst the roar. The moment of luxury. The ultimate pampering. The Dorchester Spa.

Perfection just happens.


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Fashion and Entertainment

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NATALIE DORMERQUEEN OF THE SCREEN Being put under the microscope by news-hungry journalists has forever been a prerequisite of the job for any celebrity. But it seems Hollywood actors and actresses find themselves under it more often than most. From scrutiny on their latest films, to scorned ex-lovers looking to make a quick buck, there’s a lot to contend with for the stars of today’s big screen. One actress who gracefully takes it all in her stride is Natalie Dormer. The British born star is best known for her role as Margaery Tyrell in Game of Thrones, a role she played for 26 episodes of the TV smash.


Growing up in Reading, Berkshire it was clear from an early age that Natalie was destined for a career in the spotlight. Earning herself a place at the prestigious Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art in London, she stood out among the establishment’s glowing alumni which boasts the likes of Angela Lansbury, Emma Chambers and Terence Stamp.

She faced the grim reality that the unpredictable world of acting can so often bring, finding herself out of work for almost a year. In what she has since described as “bad representation” she went from starring alongside acting greats, to waiting tables and working in data entry to bridge the gap between work.

It took her just six months following her graduation from the academy to win her first role as she was swept up among Hollywood royalty – Heath Ledger and Sienna Miller – for the 2005 romance film Casanova.

Speaking to MTV about this experience she said: “Casanova got me a three picture deal with Disney, but it was never exercised. It was one of the greatest lessons I ever learned, to be perfectly honest with you. It was bad representation at the time. Opportunities were missed that shouldn’t have been.

Following her fantastic performance playing the virginal character of Victoria, Casanova’s fiancée in the film, you would be forgiven for assuming that nothing short of an upward trajectory for her would follow, but instead her career took a premature hit.

“It was really dispiriting. I remember making Christmas cards that year, because I couldn’t afford to buy them.”

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Fashion and Entertainment

After months of no acting, Natalie was lucky to be given another chance to shine. And fortunately, led onto what can now be described as her ‘big break’. Stepping into the shoes of one of the most iconic historical figures of all time, she took on the role of the doomed Anne Boleyn in the first two series’ of BBC’s The Tudors, which chronicled the reign of Henry VIII. After her character’s inevitable beheading, in 2011 her name was confirmed in the line-up for the second season of Game of Thrones. Her casting into the show came at a time when the world had quickly grown an obsession for the fantasy TV series. Spending four years on the show, Natalie gained global recognition as she took centre stage in one of the show’s most controversial storylines which saw her character seduce 12-year-old King Tommen (played in the show by then 17 year old Dean Charles Chapman).

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The plot received huge backlash from fans and critics alike. But it wasn’t until her own comments on the issue were taken out of context that she made her stand. Highlighting the bigger issue in hand, she spoke about the difference in treatment among men and women in the acting industry. “The first point is that the male actors in the show don’t get a lot of flak when they’re raping and murdering, because people understand it’s fantasy,” she said. “And yet if a female actress has to portray something – which isn’t portrayed explicitly – I get flak, personally. “Frequently the age gap between a male actor and his female love interest in movies is 15 years-plus, but the same comments are not made.” Since then, Natalie has become somewhat of a voice for women in the industry and never shies away from speaking out about the uncomfortable truths that face female actors on a daily basis.

It’s so refreshing to play a woman who is not defined by the love of a man

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Fashion and Entertainment

Throughout her career, nudity has been a common theme due to the characters she has played and while she seemingly hasn’t been afraid to bare all, she has been keen to set the record straight that she isn’t always as confident as she seems on screen. In an interview with the New Statesman, Natalie said “I have never been comfortable doing sex or nude scenes. Are you joking? How many people would be? My job specification is finding motivation in the text. “I’ve turned down roles that have involved sex, solely because of the way I’ve been misrepresented. I’m so terrified at the moment of perpetuating that clickbait image of me.” And it is this image of her, and women in general, in the industry that she is frequently speaking out about. In wake of the #MeToo movement that has swept through Hollywood in recent times, many stars have been quick to give comment on how women are represented in the industry. In this sense, Natalie was ahead of the times and in a Guardian, interview said: “Female empowerment shouldn’t be exclusively about sexuality. And you meet a lot of male writers and directors who want to wave the equality flag and believe that they’re making you a kick-ass female assassin, and they’re empowering you. Whereas true empowerment would not be stylised, hyper sexualisation.” And this empowerment has influenced her when it comes to the roles, she has gone on to choose since her success. In 2014 she was cast as Cressida in the two part finale of the Hunger Games franchise. Portraying the rebel director who helps Katniss Everdeen, (played by Jennifer Lawrence), bring down the Capitol, Natalie was pleased to play a female character who did not conform to the usual stereotypes.

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“It’s so refreshing to play a woman who is not defined by the love of a man” she said. “I was getting a little tired of sitting around in a silk skirt. It was a good antidote to put on a pair of army boots and run around in the mud for nine months.” While fantasy and period pieces seem to have become Natalie’s genres of choice during her career, she has ensured, with confidence, that she will not become typecast with a number of bold career moves in recent years. This includes writing and producing her own thriller, In Darkness, starring in the action-come-horror flick Patient Zero and her pending role in Sky’s Penny Dreadful revival of City of Angels. Natalie is by no means your average actress, but when you strip everything else away it is clear to see that she is simply a woman trying to make her way in the world one step at a time.

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Fashion and Entertainment

KARL LAGERFELD: AN ICON IMMORTALISED After his passing in February, the following feature celebrates the life of an icon who epitomised creativity and style, from humble Germanic beginnings to the helm of Chanel. Hailed by many as “The Master of Reinvention”, Karl Lagerfeld’s life was one of colour and art, hallmarked by his inimitable creativity and love of couture.

K Beginnings

Karl Otto Lagerfeld was born into a pre-war 1933 Germany to a businessman father and Swedish mother. Undoubtedly born into good fortune due to his father’s business ventures, the young creative and his family emigrated to rural Northern Germany from Hamburg during the turn of Hitler in order to escape Nazi ruling. Despite his somewhat sheltered upbringing away from the horrors of war, a 14-year-old Karl, increasingly hungry for creative inspiration, sought a future in the design capital of Paris. During his stint in the French capital, Lagerfeld mingled with the likes of Yves Saint Laurent whilst working under the guidance of the legendary Pierre Balmain: first as a junior designer and later as an apprentice. Unsurprisingly, such early exposure to industry greats ensured that by 1961, Lagerfeld was ready to strike out on his own. What followed was a series of incredible collections for brands such as Chloé and Fendi where he became famous for his love of vintage: buying and reconstructing antique garments in an authentically Karl way. Life at Chanel By the 1980’s Karl was something of a celebrity, not only in the world of fashion but also in the general media, rubbing shoulders with the likes of Andy Warhol and other iconic creative figures.

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His renowned status led to the launch of his eponymous label in 1984, a brand that was built around the concept of “intellectual sexiness” and continues to see phenomenal success to this day. However, it was undoubtedly Karl’s position as Creative Director of Chanel that earned him his legendary status. His appointment at the brand was originally met with a mixture of bewilderment, bemusement and some anger, as he was tasked with the challenge of turning around the then prim and archaic design house into a modern and desirable label whilst not losing Coco Chanel’s classical identity and vision.

Despite the mammoth size of the undertaking, Chanel was reborn as the most covetable of all fashion brands. By combining signature brand staples such as tweed and pearls, with a heady mix of recognisable logo placement, supermodel endorsement and shorter hemlines, it wasn’t long before the fashion crowd couldn’t get enough of the once defunct label. This status was not fleeting, and every season fashion’s finest would gather to see what the individualistic designer was offering. Lagerfeld was also the master of the ‘It Bag’, taking a concept originated by Hermés and turning it into a global frenzy for the latest style. His reimagining of the double ‘C’ logo and modernising of the classic flap bag created a style that would continue to dominate waiting lists globally, due to its rare ability to be both enduring and the height of fashion simultaneously: much like the man himself. Public Persona and Later Years Whilst continuing his presence at Chanel, Karl simultaneously worked as Director of Fendi, lending his enduringly erudite eye to a label once known for little more than fur and ascending his star power even higher. Every season, journalists clamoured for new styles and Karl’s presence in equal measures. Unfortunately, this was to both his benefit and detriment, as Lagerfeld would often go on record in his typically unreserved style to make less than savoury comments about a variety of public figures.

The once untouchable icon began to feel the wrath of the press on a number of occasions, sometimes struggling to save face in the wake of sexist and anti-plus size commentary. Nevertheless, when he emerged looking increasingly frail, concern circulated globally as many became troubled about the health of the elderly designer. Despite this, he continued to turn out collection after collection of beautiful couture. When the world woke to the news of Lagerfeld’s death on the 19th February, there was a collective sadness as the world mourned the loss of one of the original creative greats. Muses and fashion lovers alike gathered to watch the last Chanel show with an unforgettable mixture of sadness and celebration. As the last look turned on the catwalk, Cara Delevingne could be seen wiping her eyes in response: a gesture that seemed almost symbolic of all those who had experience of Karl’s work.

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Fashion and Entertainment



The tie began its life in seventeenth century France when Louis XIII stole the idea from the Croatian mercenaries he hired to fight for him in the Thirty-Year War. The king admired the piece of cloth tied around the Croatians necks so much that he made it a compulsory accessory at the French royal court and christened it a cravat (the French word for “Croat”) in their honour. However, exactly how the black tie or bow tie we now associate with the most prestigious social occasions and special events evolved out of a piece of rag round a Croatian solder’s neck is not quite clear.

What we do know, however, is that it was in the late nineteenth century that the dinner jacket and corresponding back tie became popular amongst the British middle and upper classes who sought

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an alternative to the dress coat, which was an evening tailcoat that had begun to seem just a tad too formal. Then in 1886 it properly became a part of fashion history when a formal ball was held by the tobacco magnate Pierre Lorillard on his estate in Orange County in New York state. We know how much influence this event was to have by the name of the club at which it was held: The Tuxedo Club. So, not only was the dinner jacket introduced to America, but it was taken to the heart of American society and given a new name that would last to this day. The Evolution of the Black Tie As the twentieth century progressed, dinner jackets and black bow ties became less associated with regular evening wear and more

associated with the special events that came to be characterised by the tie that was an intrinsic part of the uniform. In turn, “black tie events” became associated with glamorous events and people, and so in time they became synonymous with Hollywood and the glitz of the film industry. Amongst its most famous advocates were Charlie Chaplin, Humphrey Bogart, Frank Sinatra, Fred Astaire and Dean Martin. As time went on and the black tie lost some of its formality, other colours and designs began to creep in, but the bow tie was always a symbol of class and refinement. It would also later come to be strongly associated with intelligence, as various famous intellectuals,

politicians and scientists began to favour it, including Sir Winston Churchill, Franklin Roosevelt, Saul Bellow and Arthur Schlesinger. In the decades after the end of the Second World War, black tie events have become increasingly less rigid in their protocol and today quite a lot of variation is permitted. However, it’s still important to realize that black is very much used as a gentleman’s uniform. It is the beautiful dresses of the females at a black tie event that take centre stage in terms of colour and overall splendour. The male’s ‘uniform’ should never over-shadow this. It would be ungentlemanly to do so.

For more information visit, alternatively to discuss your specific requirements call Adrian on 07968 438 717 or email Keep up to date with the latest news from The Bespoke Tailor by following, @TweetingTailor

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Fashion and Entertainment

DRESS CODE Discover the dress to conquer any number of events in our summer edit from Harvey Nichols. From Erdem’s botanical prints to Diane von Furstenberg’s silk stripes, Lisa Piddington reveals the perfect pieces guaranteed to garner plenty of ‘oohs’ and ‘ahhs’ whatever the occasion.




1. Entitled ‘Wonderland’, Alice + Olivia’s SS19 collection offers a cornucopia of vivid colour. Splashed in bold primary hues, the Farrah dress, £450, is scattered with botanical florals and flowers from the collared neckline down to the layered handkerchief hem.

3. RIXO London’s enchanting silk Noleen dress, £295, combines two trending prints – polka-dots and florals – in one beautifully worked canvas, while the wrap silhouette promises to faultlessly flatter.

2. This season RED Valentino embraces Mexico’s Adelitas, a revolutionary group of women who wore bandoliers across their dresses. Decorated with the SS19 collection’s edgy tattoo print, this crepe de chine midi dress, £990, boasts softly flared pleats for a feminine silhouette.


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4. Part of Erdem’s quintessentially dreamy Resort 19 collection, the Raegen dress, £990, is decorated with the archival Fasset Dream print with its sprigs of berries, blooms and foliage. Tailored with pintucks through the body, its loose silhouette is playfully balanced with voluminous bell-like cuffs.



Dresses are available from Harvey Nichols Birmingham, in store or via Style Concierge, and online at

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THE WEDDING GUEST 5. Whether it’s a country affair or city centre nuptials, this stunning mustard midi dress, £200, from Gestuz is perfect for the best dressed guest. The jacquard satin and dolman sleeves give it a real retro feel.

PERFECT FOR PARTIES 9: Tailored for twirling, Diane von Furstenberg’s Azalea striped silk maxi dress, £635, will make an impact at any summer occasion. Striped in vivid tonal shades, the classically feminine wrap shape is tailored to a slim bodice before falling to a swishing, pleated maxi hem.

6. Australian label Keepsake is the influencers’ go-to for modern elegance and romantic occasionwear. This Daybreak dress, £180, is printed with trailing floral motifs that decorate its lilac chiffon base, from the billowing sleeves down to the ruffled trims.

10. Crafted from sugar-pink plissé, the Clarity midi dress, £175, from Keepsake is designed to sit off-the-shoulder with a band of oversized ruffles tracing the neckline – a detail that’s subtly mirrored at the frilled hem.

BOHO BEAUTIES 7. From holidays to hot bank holiday weekends, Free People’s Bali Will Wait For You embroidered midi dress, £150, is the go-to style for laid-back chic. It ticks all the boho boxes with its embroidered and lace appliqué, ruffled sleeves, tassel embellishments and frayed trim.



8 Zimmermann’s Amari dress, £995, evokes images of sun-soaked tropics and far-flung destinations. Spun from cotton and silk, this multicoloured midi is structured from tiers of printed georgette and its sweeping silhouette is punctuated with the mandarin collar and balloon sleeves.

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Fashion and Entertainment


So guys, you’ve mastered the basics and now it’s time to add some standout style to your summer wardrobe. It’s easy to incorporate pattern – keep things simple by setting prints, stripes or jacquard against solid colours, while the more adventurous can go all-out on co-ordinated jackets and trousers or mix up logomania accessories. Lisa Piddington selects her must-have menswear prints from Harvey Nichols.

1: Balenciaga patterned shirt, £615.

7: Off-White camouflage-print canvas backpack, £450.

2: Converse Chuck 70 camouflage-print hi-top trainers, £70.

8: Off-White paint-effect skinny jeans, £560.

3: Dior Homme floral-print silk shirt, £780.

9: Paul Smith floral-print Lyocell shirt, £125.

4: Dries Van Noten Panthero printed jeans, £435.

10: Valentino VLTN Grid camouflage bucket hat, £275.

5: Eastpak X Maison Kitsune Out of Office backpack, £85.

11: Valentino VLTN Grid camouflage cotton jacket, £1650.

6: Fendi logo-print shirt, £490.

12: Versace Chain Reaction floral-print trainers, £780.

Products featured are available from the menswear department or via Style Concierge at Harvey Nichols, The Mailbox, Birmingham and online at


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Fashion and Entertainment

HARVEY NICHOLS SS19 FASHION SHOW EVENT: Harvey Nichols Birmingham SS19 Fashion Show in association with DS Automobiles. VENUE: Level 1, Mailbox Car Park. TRENDS: Nautical, 90s Nostalgia, Double Denim, Colour Splash, Earth Tones, Urban Junkie, After Dark.

1: Jacket £585, Anna October; Bralet £32, Free People; Trouser £405, Anna October; Pump £560, Gianvito Rossi. 2: Dress £2300, Valentino; Uptown Shoulder Bag £1600, Valentino; PVC Strap Heel £595, Christian Louboutin. 3: Blazer £1495, Balmain; Striped Shirt £110, Filippa K; Striped Skirt £650, Balmain; Kani Bag £1685, Fendi; Classic Patent Pump £535, Gianvito Rossi. 4: Trench £295, Club Monaco; Vest £90, Club Monaco; Jean £850, Balmain; Sylvie Bag £1690, Gucci. 5: Shirt £360, Alice + Olivia; Skirt £620, Off-White; Slingback £890, Dior. 6: Sweatshirt £790, Gucci; Silk Skirt £130, SAMSØE & SAMSØE; Trainer £885, Gucci; Bum Bag £650, Burberry. 7: Tiger T-shirt £350, Gucci; Pearl Jean £170, Replay; Rucksack £1190, Burberry; Sneaker £1080, Gucci.

MAKEUP: Marc Jacobs Beauty. HAIR: James Bushell. NAILS: Heaven Skincare PHOTOS: Dan Rowley.

8: T-shirt £335, Dolce & Gabbana; Metallic Skirt £675, Calvin Klein; Multi Tote £1165, Christian Louboutin; Pump £595, Christian Louboutin. 9: Blazer £985, Stella McCartney; Top £230, Alice + Olivia; Trouser £270, Alice + Olivia; Velvet Bag £1160, Gucci; Sandal £665, Christian Louboutin. 10: Jumper £95, American Vintage; Rainbow Skirt £310, Pinko; White Tote £1065, Christian Louboutin; Love Ankle Boot £925, Christian Louboutin. 11: Dress £2980, Gucci. 12: Cashmere Cape £2200, Valentino; Vest £95, American Vintage; Trouser £670, Givenchy; Sac De Jour Bag £2090, Saint Laurent. 13: Dress £995, Christopher Kane; Envelope Clutch £455, Valentino; Boot £795, Gucci.


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Fashion and Entertainment




1. Lola Kimono- Octavia Hix

3. The Panama Hat Company- Jenny Panama Hat

Nothing screams poolside chic like a luxurious kimono, and the Lola from Octavia Hix- an exclusive brand founded by sisters Hattie and Vix, is the perfect choice.

Certain Summer essentials are enduring classics that return season after season as a staple. A Panama hat is the perfect example of this and something that authentic milliners The Panama Hat Company are experts in.

Inspired by travels to faraway lands, the relaxed midi-length piece features a vibrant azure koi design and ¾ length sleeves. Whether perusing a market or relaxing on the beach, it is the ideal summer coverup for everything from poolside to cocktails. 2. Sana Jardin- Berber Blonde Perfume Long summer nights call for exotic fragrances and Berber Blonde from Sana Jardin- the world’s first socially conscious fragrance house, is a pick that’s bursting with notes of bergamot and orange blossom. Evoking light, love and happiness, orange blossom helps centre the mind and promote mindfulness and conscious presence. The explosively fresh, floral scent is made even sweeter by the company’s mission of empowering women through their Beyond Sustainability™ Movement. Plus it’s free of parabens- smell good and do good.


Run by mother and daughter team Mavi and Jenny since 1985, all hats are hand woven in Ecuador before being manufactured lovingly in the UK. For a true classic, the Jenny style is a true investment with its medium sized brim in Cuenca weave. Simply personalise with your choice of coloured band. 4. Nailberry – Santorini Shade Santorini blue is THE hero shade for spring/summer 2019, inspired by Greek towns and azure oceans vegan polish brand Nailberry have nailed the trend with their breathable L’Oxygéné formula. Founded in 2012 by Sonia Hully, the innovative lacquer allows air and moisture to pass through polish to help give healthier, stronger nails. Get a dose of sunshine and colour your nails healthy! 5. Function of beauty shampoos and conditionersCherry BI(awesome) fragrance All of the summer sun, sand and sea can take its toll on even the healthiest of hair. However, the world-class cosmetics scientists at Function Of Beauty have it covered with their creations of personalised formulas that are individually crafted through innovative algorithms based on hair types, goals and preferences. The best part? The fragrance and colour can be selected too. While their cherry edition is perfect for the warmer weather, other options include peach, flower, pineapple, coconut and eucalyptus, as well a fragrance free.

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6. A by BOM cosmetics- 2 step ultra-floral leaf face mask


Parched summer skin is always in need of deep hydration and a mask is the perfect way to inject some much needed moisture. The 2 step ultra-floral leaf face mask by A by Bom cosmetics, a luxury Korean skincare brand, is ideal with sakura flower extracts, rose, lotus and camelia. Made from natural ingredients and a 200% lyocell sheet, making it totally organic, the brand understands human skin and what it needs without over complicating the process. The perfect edition to a daily routine.

1. 4. 2.

8. 7. Miu Miu - Wicker and leather shoulder bag Wicker bags have been the perfect summer accessories for many seasons now, but for a bold update on this classic design Miu Miu’s wicker and leather shoulder bag with flashes of Begonia pink is a modern choice.


The Italian fashion house understands how to combine whimsical design with elegance in perfect measure. With an adorable gingham lining and statement metal hardware, the piece adds a high fashion touch to an accessory staple. The perfect investment to bring out summer after summer. 8. Moschino - Nappa Meter Bag For a splash of summer yellow with an edgy metallic touch, just add Moschino’s new Meter clutch bag. Crafted from supple Nappa leather, the statement piece is from designer Jeremy Scott’s latest collection for the quirky fashion house. Inspired by none other than the humble household tape measure, the unusual design is surprisingly wearable. With a removeable shoulder strap and galvanic nickel details it is both practical and stylish in equal measures.

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Fashion and Entertainment



There is little doubt that summer is a season to savour. From the sun beaming down, to the promise of an escape to sandier shores, all that is needed to complete this idyllic mix is a swimsuit.

For many women though, this is where the blissful image of warmer weather halts because swimwear is confusing. From cuts that just don’t make sense, to bikini tops that offer a dangerously low level of support, each of these elements can add up to create a feeling of total insecurity. Yet, it doesn’t need to be this way. With few pointers as to the best brands on the market, swimwear selection can be a joyous activity. Of course, there is never a one-size-fits-all mould and confidence should remain the number one criteria in swimsuit selection. Nevertheless, if inspiration is lacking and a holiday is looming, read on to discover a handful of helpful tips for choosing the right cut and colour for any body.

Hour-Glass Look for: high leg cuts, waist emphasising details and underwiring support. Typically characterised by a slim waist and fuller hips and chest, hourglass shapes are the epitome of fifties starlets and those blessed with the figure should channel this with their swimwear choices. Belt details and higher cut bikini briefs are all excellent choices for highlighting the waist while a higher cut leg helps to give the illusion of longer limbs. Low rise bottoms,

unless taller can detract from the waist and make the torso look disproportionate. On the top half, structured support is the best way to showcase a silhouette, so underwired bikini tops or swimsuits are the perfect way to balance out without being excessive. It is usually better to steer clear of triangle tops as these offer little to no support. Think Ursula Andress in Bond. Places to look: Bravissimo, Lisa Marie Fernández, Pour Moi, Boux Avenue

Apple Look for: one pieces, high cut legs, plunging necklines, stomach ruching details. With legs that most can only dream of, apple shapes are characterised by a fuller bust, lean limbs and less waist definition. With the option of flaunting cleavage or legs, there are plenty of styles that suit this body type perfectly. A plunging one piece is always an incredible option for apple shapes as it helps to highlight ones best features and pull in the waist line perfectly. If this is paired with a higher cut leg to maximise limbs to their full potential, the combination can be truly stunning: unconstrained glamour at its finest. Places to look: Hunza G, Oye, Myra

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Gamine Look for: interesting details, delicate ties, one pieces, halter necks, boy legs. Tall and slender with slim and delicate features, the gamine body type looks best in neat and modern cuts. Consider stars such as Keira Knightley who were born to wear slim straps and clothing with scalloped edges. Channel these muses when selecting swimwear by looking for muted tones, delicate ties, décolletage enhancing halter necks and longer boy leg bottoms. These look so-so on other shapes, but on the gamine? Elegant and oh so French. Places to look: Chloé, Mara Hoffman, Sea Folly, H&M

Pear Look for: high cut legs, push up tops, lower rise bottoms. For luscious pear shapes, balancing out a curvier bottom half with a delicate upper body is the main task. So, whether choosing to flaunt or cover, there are plenty of stylish options. To boost a bust, gentle push up tops with light padding are a great way to balance out. So are darker colours on the bottom with lighter on the top, and mismatched prints look phenomenal. Pear shapes also have the enviable trait of amazing stomachs, so whilst others are looking to cover a pouch with high rise bottoms, a daring lower cut can be amazing on this body shape. Prepare for jealous glances… Places to look: GANNI, Heidi Klein, ViX, Boux Avenue

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Fashion and Entertainment

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THE BEYONCÉ OF THE ‘POPERA’ WORLD That was how Simon Cowell commented following one of the most powerful auditions ever seen on Britain’s Got Talent when Faith Tucker impressed the famous judges in April. From performing in local competitions to wowing millions of viewers on Britain’s Got Talent in 2019, operatic sensation Faith Tucker epitomises the meaning of a rising star. Since the age of eight it was clear that Faith was destined for greatness, with her stunning vocals raising goosebumps at every venue she performed in. The Nottingham-born singer has become well-known for her renditions of classical and operatic pieces, but it wasn’t until she was 13 that these became her genre of choice. Influenced by sopranos such as Katherine Jenkins, Elīna Garanča and Maria Callas, she often creates arrangements in her own unique style and personality, including the wonderful Habanera from Bizet’s Carmen, Granada and Time to Say Goodbye. In her early teens, Faith won a junior scholarship at the prestigious Royal Birmingham Conservatoire, studying vocal performance technique as well as piano and music theory where she impressed peers and students alike achieving distinctions in her Royal School of Music piano exams and winning the Peter Vernon Trophy for vocals, in 2015. She is soon to start at the Royal College of Music in London. At just 18-years old and under the expert management of Champions Music & Entertainment, Faith has performed at some of the UK’s biggest events and venues such as at the world-famous Symphony Hall in Birmingham, Leicester Cathedral in front of King Richard III’s tomb, the beautiful L’eglise Sainte-Marie-Madeleine in Paris and at the opening gala event in London for the 2015 Rugby World Cup’s sponsors where she completely wowed the audiences. However, her biggest break to date has undoubtedly come

in the form of television’s biggest and toughest talent show... Britain’s Got Talent. Just like Susan Boyle, Diversity and Paul Potts before her, Faith made the decision to audition for the 2019 series which led to her appearing in front of celebrity judges, Simon Cowell, Amanda Holden, Alesha Dixon and David Walliams, plus a live theatre audience of 1500 and more than nine million viewers watching at home. Faith stunned the nation with her rendition of ‘Granada’ which saw her receive a standing ovation from the judges and the entire TV audience. The very difficult song made popular by the likes of Luciano Pavarotti and Frank Sinatra was performed incredibly by Faith. Sailing through to the semi-finals, Faith is clearly enjoying the experience where the prize awaiting the show’s eventual winner is the chance to perform at the Royal Variety Show at the London Palladium. Whatever happens though, one thing’s for sure... Faith has a big future ahead of her. To book Faith Tucker for your next event, call Alan Warner at Champions (UK) plc on 0207 0787 876 or email

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KingCole ok Live Songbo

P RO U D LY P R E S E N TS One of the UK’s most soulful voices, Andy Abraham has performed at many of the country’s biggest venues and to millions of people worldwide. Following his success on The X Factor in 2005 when he was voted as the show’s runner-up, Andy’s career has continued to go from strength to strength. From releasing a UK Platinum certified album, to performing in packed out arenas, Andy has recently embarked on a nationwide tour, taking on the sound of one of the world’s greatest ever jazz and soul musicians, Nat King Cole!

ANDY ABRAHAM Cole’s birth and has seen him visit a number of locations across the country including Sheffield, Leicester and Lincoln. Using his stunning vocals Andy has taken on timeless masterpieces such as Unforgettable and Mona Lisa, in what has been an outstanding tribute to one of the world’s most well-loved voices. The show has been a huge success so far and there are still three shows left to go. Andy will be visiting Lichfield’s Garrick Theatre on 14 June, Runcorn’s The Brindley Theatre on 19 June and Clacton On Sea’s Westcliff Theatre on 28 June.

The show celebrated the centenary of Nat King

For more information please visit


ANDY ABRAHAM TO BOOK ANDY ABRAHAM NOW Contact Nick Darby at Champions (UK) plc on



European Association of Speakers Bureaux

Beauty and Health

SELF-CARE CENTRAL: TAPPING INTO THE WELLNESS TREND In the UK, one in four adults – and one in five in the US – suffer from a form of mental illness. Yet mental health issues such as anxiety and depression are still under represented in the media something that the wellness trend aims to tackle. Exercise and diet have traditionally been seen as natural shortcuts towards wellbeing, but over time the media has twisted this message to form an association between wellness and physical beauty. However, pioneering businesses and consumers are claiming the word back as their own, focusing on placing a positive, mental health focused stance on the term.


The following roundup touches on some of the most important elements of the new wellness trend and where abouts the revolution has originated from: Yoga

Perhaps the exercise most associated with wellness, yoga is having a resurgence thanks to its new association with a host of mental health benefits. Traditionally, HIIT and other forms of intense exercise have been promoted as the best option thanks to mantras such as “sweat out all of the negativity”. However, such strenuous activity can also release cortisol (the stress hormone). Enter yoga, an activity that is continuously being associated with more and more benefits. Principally, it focuses on deep breathing, stretches and mental release with long term practitioners seeing changes in brain structure that correlate to being less effected by negative stimuli. Now with mental health truly in the spotlight for the first time, yoga is being offered as the solution to combining body and mind. The science of breathing We all need to breathe, however, linked to the yoga trend is the art of mindful breathing. Our modern lives and stress levels have conditioned us into unhealthy shallow breathing that is not in line with optimal wellness.

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This has led to a new focus on Holotropic and yogic breathing where the act is transformed from a subconscious bodily function into an act of mental and physical stabilisation. Furthermore, just one session of relaxing practices like meditation, yoga, and chanting influenced the expression of genes in both short-term and long-term practitioners, according to a Harvard study. Mindful eating and health cafés A powerful tool to help gain control of destructive dietary habits such as binge eating, mindful eating is being modernised from the traditional Buddhist concept that centres around controlling your physical and emotional ingrained responses. What we put in our bodies is directly linked to wellness and state of mind and mindfulness encourages abundance rather than excess or deprivation. Fundamentally, mindful eating involves eating slowly and without distraction, listening to hunger cues but only eating until satisfied rather than stuffed, distinguishing between actual hunger and when food is being used as a prop for another issue such as boredom. As well as this it’s about learning to cope with anxiety or guilt around food. In response to this and presenting themselves as the antithesis to the traditional ‘blow out restaurant meal’ a slew of cafés are popping up that are based around these very principles and focus on making the diner feel good about what they

are putting into their bodies. Places such as The Deliciously Ella Deli and Clean-Cut Kitchen encompass the indulgence of café culture with feel good ingredients to create a virtuous but delicious menu. Wellness retreats Part of the larger ‘transformative travel’ trend, wellness retreats focus on combining the escapism of a break away with the benefits of an intensified health and fitness regime. These retreats are less about massages and more about getting back to your true self before the stresses and strains of life interviewed. With more than 17 million travellers stating that they are health and wellness focused, think of these retreats as an intellectual upgrade on the traditional spa break. With a combination of nourishing food, mind and body focused classes and meditation, wellness breaks are being presented as the ultimate antidote to modern day life.

Wellness on the go Strapped for time? The following apps offer a piece of wellness that will easily slot into a busy routine: Headspace From the basics of meditation to a 10-day course that offers a more detailed insight into the practice: Headspace removes the daunting element of being alone with your thoughts and transforms it into the ultimate ‘me time’. Calm The Calm app combines meditation with relaxing music, podcasts and even poetry to create an oasis of relaxation that is guaranteed to have the ultimate in positive impact. Calm also tracks sleep cycles to ensure that a full REM cycle is being completed to underpin a healthy lifestyle. Deliciously Ella Linked to mindful eating, this plant-based app offers healthy recipes and podcasts at the touch of a button as well as interesting podcasts on wellness and the benefits of leading a healthier lifestyle. Deliciously Ella focuses on feeling great rather than simply lowering the number on the scales.

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HIGHFIELD DENTAL CLINIC It’s special, it’s unique, it’s your smile.

Practising dentistry for over 20 years, Highfield’s Dr Nazanin ShojaAssadi and Dr Fash Shoja-Assadi understand the importance of a confidence boosting smile. Highfield dental clinic, based in Edgbaston are experts in smile rejuvenation, helping to perfect their smiles, giving them the confidence they desire.

Dr Fash and his team are at the very top of their game. Trust me, you will not find a better, more sensitive, more knowledgeable dentist anywhere in the world.

- Aidan

The state of the art private clinic offers outstanding levels of patient care, as well as delivering high standards of aesthetics, Highfield also provide general dentistry including emergency care and paediatric dentistry. At Highfield we do not just specialise in teeth we also offer botox/fillers, body sculpting and facial/skin rejuvenation. Example of Dr Assadi’s work

Treatments at Highfield include: • Cosmetic smile makeover

• Dentures

• Orthodontics ‘invisible’ braces

• Dental Hygienist

• Dental implants

• Teeth whitening

• Porcelain veneers

• Botox and Fillers

• Porcelain crowns

• Laser Treatments

• Bridges

• Skin Treatments

• Tooth coloured fillings

Highfield Dental Clinic Highfield House, 2 Highfield Road Edgbaston Birmingham B15 3ED

At Highfield Dental Clinic I have never felt under pressure or pushed into anything and every member of staff did everything they could to make me feel comfortable. Now my treatment is complete I have the smile I’ve always wanted! My smile is even better than what I expected, I’m so happy with the result! Thank you!

- Jenni

Highfield Rejuvenation Centre High eld Clinic

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Specialising in: Laser-hair Removal · “Lunch-Time” Facelift Thread Veins · Redness/Blemish Control · Pigmentation Nail/Fungal Reduction · All Skin Types/Tones Female and Male specialists available. Evening & weekend appointments available.

To book your FREE consultation, Call 0121 455 6974 Or visit us in practice at 2 Highfield Road, Edgbaston, B15 3ED

25/03/2013 14:32

Beauty and Health



Hair loss, whatever the cause, can be a particularly sensitive issue and may lead to a decrease in self-esteem. For some, this may even involve a courageous personal battle for which this is just one of the side-effects.

While NHS wigs are available, this can be a clinical, impersonal service, feeling more like a hospital appointment. Women may feel they have lost their femininity and long for that salon pampering experience. Turning this journey into an easier process has been the inspiration behind Geiko Salon’s Feel Free hair loss solutions. A luxurious, bespoke in-salon service, Geiko provide beautiful natural looking wigs and hair pieces, styled and coloured for the individual. For both ladies and gents, Feel Free is about a pampering experience that centres around escapism. It makes choosing, styling and maintaining a wig or hair piece very similar to a regular salon experience, while boosting self-esteem and allowing wearers to simply feel like themselves again. Offering premium quality real and synthetic wigs as well as custom options; skin tone, facial shape and lifestyle are all carefully considered upon consultation. Personal appointments involve measuring, fitting and styling services where there isn’t any rush or pressure and Geiko will offer as much help as is needed.

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Out of hours private appointments are also available on a Sunday as well as regular salon hours. Once a wig is fitted, wearers are shown how to care for it and supplied with specialist products. A return appointment is then scheduled within 4–6 weeks for a follow-up session, where the wig is removed before the scalp is cleaned and checked before reapplication. Feel Free is above all about giving the individual the chance to regain confidence and bring back a little normality with a truly beautiful and natural looking hair piece. Call Paula at Geiko on 01926 885859.


Hairdressing for Leamington Spa 12 Park Street, Leamington Spa 01926 885859

Sporting World

THE NATURE VALLEY BIG TENNIS WEEKEND IS HEADING TO TOWN Families across the UK are being given the chance to play tennis for free this summer. Tennis venues across the country are to host some of the first Nature Valley Big Tennis Weekends of the year, with the programme opening on May 4-5. “Nearly 300,000 people have been involved since we launched the programme. We’re determined to grow those numbers yet again this year as we commit to bringing more people into the sport through the Big Tennis Weekends and then provide opportunities for them to stay involved on a regular basis.” The tennis open days are a great taster opportunity for families to try the sport at their local club or venue. From Mini Tennis to Cardio Tennis and a whole host of other activities to get involved in, the Nature Valley Big Tennis Weekend is the perfect family day out for all. Rackets and


The Nature Valley Big Tennis Weekends programme was launched by the LTA in 2013 in recognition of Andy Murray’s historic Wimbledon victory. The weekends aim to attract new participants into the sport through free open days held on tennis courts in parks, clubs and communities. Follow on opportunities are then provided for anyone who enjoys the weekend and wants to continue playing, whether that be by joining the club or park’s regular programme of activities or signing up to start the LTA’s Tennis for Kids scheme. Over 43,000 people tried tennis thanks to the programme last year, with more than 1,000 venues taking part. And crucially, nearly half of those people then went on to join their local tennis club. “We’re incredibly proud of the impact that Nature Valley Big Tennis Weekends have had on our sport over the last five years. In opening up our sport to local communities and providing free opportunities for families to enjoy tennis, they have already proved to be a fantastic legacy of Andy’s Wimbledon win” commented Oliver Scadgell, LTA Participation Director.

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balls will be provided, so whether you’ve never picked up a racket before or you’re a seasoned regular – there is an opportunity for everyone to join in. The Nature Valley Big Tennis Weekends begin on 4-5 May and take place across the country throughout the year. Visit to sign up to these and other dates throughout the year! Visit to sign up to these and other dates throughout the year!

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AYnt L P eve r for O T the iste TS in reg KE ite to TIC ebs r o E ur w E FRisit o





Play with the Legends Lawrie OBE

Tournament host Ian Woosnam OBE

McGinley Van de Velde


Trevose Golf & Country Club, Padstow

20th-23rd June 2019 COVERAGE ON



AT THE BELFRY HOTEL & RESORT Located at the award-winning Belfry Hotel & Resort, The Ryder Grill Restaurant succeeds in creating the most memorable of dining experiences. The delicious À La Carte menu, lovingly prepared by our Head Chef, provides a refreshing take on modern dining where guests can enjoy stunning views across the iconic Brabazon golf course.


01675 238 600 |

Sporting World

CRICKET WORLD CUP It has been two decades since the UK last hosted the Cricket World Cup, but 2019 sees the biggest event in one day cricket return to our shores. It’s the fifth time our country has hosted the event, but never have we been victorious, so this year England will be hoping a dose of home advantage will help them win the event for the first time ever.


The format of this year’s event differs from previous years as all 10 teams will play each other once in one group stage. Usually, the teams are split into two groups, but this new format means the top four will progress to the semi-finals which start immediately after. A number of stadiums around the UK have been selected as host venues including Nottingham’s iconic Trent Bridge, Warwickshire’s Edgbaston Stadium and of course Lord’s in London where the event will reach its finale. The event, which takes place between 30 May–14 July, promises to be hugely competitive with organisers hoping the festival of cricket on show will inspire future generations to take up the sport. So, let’s take a look at some of the main teams who will be vying for glory this summer… England As hosts, the pressure is well and truly on for England to perform. But, at time of writing they are top of the ODI World Rankings so are perhaps better placed than ever before to lift the historic trophy. England crashed out before, even making it to the knockout stages in the 2015 World Cup and will be wanting to put that bitter disappointment behind them this time around. However, since then, they have become one of the most prolific sides in the world thanks to the leadership of captain Eoin Morgan. One man who believes them to be favourites is former England batsman, Ian Bell MBE. Speaking to

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The Metro he said: “I think people are saying they are the favourites and rightly so. The 50-over cricket they have played over the last three years has been outstanding. It’s going to be an exciting tournament.” India You can’t have a conversation about the best teams in the world without mentioning India. The two-time Cricket World Cup winners will get their campaign underway against South Africa. But, they have some big decisions to make in terms of selection before then, with Mohammed Shami recently making his comeback in their ODI setup. There has also been talk that off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin may be recalled after a similarly good year. Selection choices always spark big debates amongst fans but whoever India pick, you can be sure they’ll be a force to be reckoned with. Pakistan Holders of the Champions Trophy, Pakistan is another team whose eyes are firmly set on the trophy. The team haven’t won the World Cup since 1992 but they are confident they can end their drought this year. All-rounder, Shoaib Malik, is one of their stars who believes they have what it takes. “I feel we have a very good chance to win the tournament. But then having a ‘good chance’ doesn’t mean much. How we play each game and how we perform against the rest of the world will define how far we go.”


The Cricket World Cup’s greatest moments

The Aussies have won more World Cup titles than any other team in the world and are the current holders of the tournament. However, they may have to work hard if they are to successfully defend their title this year. Recent years have not been kind to Australian cricket following the retirement of some key players and of course, the small matter of that ball tampering scandal that made headlines across the world.

Since the first ever World Cup campaign in 1975 the event has thrown up a whole host of memorable moments, here are some favourites.

However, while there may be a few teams ahead of them in terms of quality at the moment, Australia have a habit of delivering the goods so don’t write them off just yet.

1. South Africa’s impossible target (1992) – South Africa have never made it to a Cricket World Cup final, but their best opportunity came in 1992. The Proteas only needed 22 runs from a remaining 13 balls to clinch their place in the final, but the weather scuppered all hope. After a 12 minute rain delay, South Africa’s target was adjusted to an impossible 22 from just one ball, meaning they went home, and England progressed. 2. South Africa choke… again (1999) – Seven years after the weather let them down, South Africa had another chance to make it to the final. Up against Australia, they needed to score nine runs in the last over. It all started so well as they quickly equalled the scores, meaning they only needed one run to progress. Somehow, they were unable to manage it and Australia progressed due to their superior record in the group stage. The Aussies went on to win the World Cup while South Africa were left wondering what went wrong. 3. Freddie Flintoff ’s pedalo encounter (2007)– The England legend forged quite the reputation in his playing days for his off-the-field antics and one of his most controversial incidents occurred during the 2007 World Cup. Following a defeat to New Zealand in their first game, Freddie drowned his sorrows and eight hours drinking resulted in him being stranded on a pedalo in the Caribbean Sea. He had to be rescued by hotel staff and was promptly stripped of his vice-captaincy. 4. Dwayne Leverock’s lunge (2007) – It isn’t just about the big names at the Cricket World Cup. In 2007 Bermuda found themselves facing heavyweights India in the group stage. Little did bowler Dwayne Leverock know that this match would make him a global star. A prison officer in his day job no one could quite believe their eyes when he threw all 20-stone of himself through the air to make a spectacular catch from Robin Uthappa. It made him a national hero in what was a truly wonderful moment.

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Sporting World

Jenni Falconer



Once again, this August will see a whole host of stars from the world of sport and entertainment descend on Nailcote Hall in Warwickshire for the latest edition of the Farmfoods British Par 3 Championship.

This year’s event takes place between 6-9 August and will see people from all golfing backgrounds including professionals, amateurs and celebrities of all ages and genders take on the tricky par 3 course. Now one of the most inclusive events in the sport, the competition has grown significantly in recent years and this is largely thanks to the combination of Nailcote’s owner, Rick Cressman, Farmfoods’ owner, Eric Herd, and leading brand agency, Champions (UK) plc. Together they have transformed the event from a littleknown Par 3 event to one of the region’s most popular golfing competitions. Ensuring that each edition of the Championship is bigger and better than ever before, preparations for the 2019 event are well underway in what looks set to be the best yet. One of the biggest draws of the event is that for over a decade, the Championship has been hosted by Europe’s most successful ever Ryder Cup captain, Tony Jacklin CBE. And, the former US Open champion will be back for the 2019 event. Over the years the BP3 has acted as a launchpad for the careers of many future European Tour stars. This includes Tommy Fleetwood and Eddie Pepperell who both won the event prior to having success on the European Tour. Fleetwood won the event in 2013, and in the same month he won the Johnnie Walker Championship at Gleneagles, clinching his first European Tour victory. Since then he has

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gone on to win three more Tour events and become part of Europe’s Ryder Cup winning team in 2018. Pepperell has also seen success winning two European Tour events. Women’s star Charley Hull is no stranger to the Cromwell Course, having played at the venue in her youth. The club’s bar is even named after her! A regular at the BP3 she has been a member of the Ladies European Tour for many years, winning two events to date. She also became the youngest ever member of Europe’s Solheim Cup team in 2013. Since 2011 the leading amateur of the BP3 has been rewarded with the Norma C Herd Silver Salver. Introduced by owner of Farmfoods, Eric Herd, the Silver Salver is in honour of his mother and the first one was won by amateur turned professional golfer, Aaron Rai, who has since gone on to achieve one victory on the European Tour and three on the Challenge Tour. Other notable winners include Charley Hull, former Strictly Come Dancing professional, James Jordan, and Craig Lawrie, the son of the 1999 Open winner Paul Lawrie OBE. Once again, last year’s event saw a stellar line-up of professionals and celebrities in attendance in what was another thrilling week. As usual the action kicked off with a Celeb-Am bringing a range of famous faces to the course. It was Liverpool, Aston Villa and Ireland legend, Steve Staunton who came out on top on the day, with his score of +1 enough to overcome the likes of former Strictly Come Dancing judge, Len Goodman, England rugby star, Mike

Len Goodman, Ola Jordan and Derek Redmond Charley Hull

Dan Walker

Tournament Host, Tony Jacklin CBE and 2018 Champion Steven Tiley

Tindall MBE, radio and television presenter, Jenni Falconer, Westlife star, Brian McFadden and Harry Potter actors, James and Oliver Phelps. The following day is when the action really heats up as the Pro-Am gets underway. Some of the players in action in 2018 included: 1991 Masters winner, Ian Woosnam OBE, Europe’s most successful Ryder Cup Captain, Tony Jacklin CBE, Open Championship star, Sam Locke, 2005 U.S. Open winner, Michael Campbell, the Ladies European Tour and LPGA Tour Charley Hull, European Tour rookie Aaron Rai, one of the most successful Italian players of all-time Costantino Rocca, and the event’s first ever Chilean player, Matias Calderon.

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Sporting World But it was Challenge Tour player, Steven Tiley who came out on top on the opening day of the main tournament. His score of -3 was enough to make him the overnight leader, ahead of European Tour player, Andrew Marshall and the 2013 Norma C Herd Silver Salver winner, Craig Lawrie. In what proved to be a tense final day, a number of players were still in contention of scooping the title and the â‚Ź50,000. In the end, it went down to a straight shootout between Steven Tiley and Andrew Marshall. With only one stroke in it, Tiley was crowned victorious holing for par on the final hole in front of a packed out grandstand. His final score of -6 was enough to clinch victory.

Amy Boulden

Mark McNulty won the Super Senior Title, the Norma C Herd Silver Salver awarded for best scoring amateur went to David Nelson, and there was also a team aspect of the day with Marshall and Jeff Sverdlow winning this.

Derek and Maria Redmond

Brian McFadden

Mike Tindall MBE

The curtain on another wonderful week came down with a final Celeb-Am. The likes of Geordie Shore star, Gaz Beadle, Love Island’s Chris Hughes, BBC Sport and news host, Dan Walker, and Coronation Street legend, William Roache MBE, all took part. It was Wolves legend, Don Goodman, who ended up winning the event with a score of +3 ahead of former Aston Villa midfielder, Lee Hendrie who scored +8. As well as all the fantastic golfing action, one of the greatest things about the Farmfoods British Par 3 Championship is the dinners and charity auctions that take place throughout Johnny Herbert

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Aaron Rai

Nick Matthews and Ian Woosnam OBE

the week. These events bring together all the players from across the week providing a place where they can unwind from the day and enjoy themselves, as well as raise much needed funds for Rainbows Hospice for Children and Young People who care for youngsters who are suffering from life-limiting and life-threatening conditions. Check out some of the names taking on the course this year‌ Celebs: Len Goodman, Kriss Akabusi MBE, Brian McFadden, Graeme Swann, Keith Duffy, Alan McInally, Mark Ramprakash MBE, Dean Ashton, Steve Harmison MBE, Jasper Carrott OBE, William Roache MBE, Derek Redmond, Rory Underwood MBE, Mike Gatting OBE and Don Goodman.

Tony Jacklin CBE and David Nelson

To register for free tickets to this year’s Farmfoods British Par 3 Championship, please visit: For more information on how you can sponsor or play in the event please contact Benoit Lawrence on 07792 530 020 or email:

Pros: Tony Jacklin CBE, Ian Woosnam OBE, Michael Campbell, Costantino Rocca, Charley Hull, Paul Lawrie OBE, Gary Wolstenholme MBE, Barry Lane, Peter Baker, Robert Rock, Lee Slattery, Aaron Rai, Steven Tiley and Oliver Wilson.

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Since it arrived on the official Staysure Tour schedule in 2017 the Farmfoods European Senior Masters has gone on to forge a reputation as one of the most popular events on the Tour. Taking place at the Forest of Arden Marriott Hotel & Country Club in the stunning Warwickshire countryside the event sees an impressive list of professionals, from Ryder Cup winners, Major champions to legends on the European Tour take part.


The event is returning this autumn between 3–6 October and is once again hosted by European Tour winner and Ryder Cup star, Peter Baker. The event will kick off with a Pro-Am on the opening day which will see the event’s Staysure Tour icons get to grips

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with the course before the main event gets underway. Teams made up of three amateurs and one professional will take to the course, giving amateurs the chance to get up close and personal with a true golfing icon.

Peter Baker, Costantino Rocca, Jean van de Velde

Tournament Host, Peter Baker

Players will go head-to-head for a team prize with individual honours also on offer and last year it was Team Sofidel who came out on top. Their score of 90 clinched victory with South African star James Kingston playing alongside the team. The following day will see the competition really heat up as the Alliance element of the competition kicks off. The format of this will see an amateur player take on the course alongside a Staysure Tour star on both the Friday and Saturday. The pair will also play better ball for a team prize but the professional player’s score will count towards the overall event. On these days, amateur players will be treated to breakfast and a buffet lunch, as well as attend an informal drinks reception once play has concluded on Saturday.

Thomas Levet

Here, the team champions will be crowned, and last year it was Liverpool legend, Steve Staunton alongside Gary Marks who came out on top with a score of -14. This win saw the pair take home some great prizes including a large suitcase with Sub70 merchandise inside, an Eleven golf bag with three + four rescue clubs, a leather score card, a pair of Duca del Cosma shoes, a one night stay with dinner, and a round of golf for two, across five Marriott Country Clubs in the UK. In second place were James Kingston and Jeremy Wilson, with Duncan Sinclair, Stephen Bennet and Jarmo Sandelin in third. All of these players also won a wide-range of fantastic prizes for their achievement. Amateurs step aside on the final day as a professional shootout takes place. Teeing off in reverse order from last to first, it proves to be the most dramatic part of the entire four-day event. With a prize of €50,000 up for grabs for the winner, last year was as fiercely contested as ever. To register for free tickets to this year’s Farmfoods European Senior Masters please visit: For more information on how you can sponsor or play in the event please contact Benoit Lawrence on 07792 530 020 or email:

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The greens were unbelievable.

Sporting World

- Santiago Luna


Thomas Levet and the Woburn Whizzers team

Ian Woosnam OBE on the 18th at the Forest of Arden

John Hayes and 2018 Champion Santiago Luna

Going into the final day, Spanish star, Santiago Luna found himself in the lead along with Peter T Wilson sitting pretty at the top of the leaderboard with a score of -7. Luna continued his grip on the event and started to pull away from the chasing pack. Scoring fantastic birdies on the fourth, sixth and seventh holes, he soon had a three stroke advantage on the rest of the field. A par on the final hole clinched victory for Luna with the Farmfoods European Senior Masters marking his fourth win on the Staysure Tour. Jean van de Velde

Crouch Logistics team with Jarmo Sandelin

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Speaking of the victory he said: “This week was fantastic. I have a good relationship with the golf course. I hit it fantastic and I had a good feeling on the greens and that was really important because the greens were unbelievable. They were really fast but really nice, the golf course was in great condition, and I played really well. I kept a good attitude, and everything was with me.” Preparations for this year’s event are now well underway with the likes of Ian Woosnam OBE, Paul McGinley and Costantino Rocca likely to be in attendance.

Yt r A n fo L e v P e ter TS e TOtheegis KEbsit in o r ICwe T t r r o EE ou FRvisit


THURSDAY 3RD – SUNDAY 6TH OCTOBER 2019 Forest of Arden Marriott Hotel & Country Club

Tournament host Peter Baker








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Sporting World


Hosted by Ian Woosnam OBE


What do you get when you bring together Ryder Cup stars, European Legends and one of the most beautifully designed golf courses in the country? A brand new and highly anticipated event on the Staysure Tour calendar!

The inaugural Farmfoods European Legends Links Championship takes place at the picturesque Trevose Golf & Country Club. A truly stunning venue, the course is just five miles west of Padstow port and features endless views of the Atlantic Ocean across it’s luscious greens. Some of the biggest names to have ever graced the world of golf will be in attendance at the event including host Ian Woosnam OBE. The 1991 Masters champion and the man who captained Europe to its Ryder Cup glory in 2006, Ian is one of Europe’s most successful golfers who has 29 European Tour wins to his name and has been inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame. Ian will be joined at the event by 1999 Open winner Paul Lawrie OBE. The Scotsman is best known for his Major win where he over overthrew Frenchman Jean van de Velde on the final day. Jean will also be in action in Trevose as the pair lock horns once again.

A number of exciting playing and sponsorship opportunities are on offer for the event. Giving people the unique chance to rub shoulders with the professionals out on the Championship Course during the event itself, these include: Pro-Am Team Event • Play alongside an icon of European golf • Breakfast on arrival • Refreshments throughout the day • Invite for you and your team to attend the Pro-Am Champagne reception and three-course dinner as well as evening entertainment The Alliance • Two days one-to-one with a Staysure Tour legend • An opportunity to win incredible prizes

Other star names who will be taking part include Costantino Rocca, Gary Wolstenholme MBE and Peter Baker.

• Breakfast and lunch on both days

While it may be too late to get involved this year, dates for the 2020 edition of the event has now been confirmed and will take place between 18–21 June.

• A place at the prize giving ceremony

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• An informal drinks reception on Saturday evening

Tournament host, Ian Woosnam OBE

Further sponsorship opportunities • Automotive displays As well as packages that involve playing in the event you can also get involved in a range of other sponsorship opportunities such as: • Pro-Am Team event • Pro-Am players’ dinner • Alliance • Event partner packages • Tee board partner packages • Green Board Partner packages

• Shirt sponsorship • Caddy bib sponsorship • Golf tee box markers • Drinks partner • Hospitality sponsorship • Media wall The format of the event means that amateurs will be able to be at the centre of the action as the professionals fight it out for the €50,000 first prize which is up for grabs.

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Sporting World

Peter Baker

The Pro-Am team event On the Thursday, play will begin with a Pro-Am team event where teams of four, (one pro golfer paired with three amateurs), play alongside one another and bid for team success. The best two scores out of the four players in each team, on each hole, contributes towards the final total of the round. On Thursday evening, after an exhilarating day’s play, guests and players alike are invited to a black-tie, three course dinner, with Champagne, entertainment and charity fundraising. The Alliance With each Alliance team made up of one amateur and one Staysure Tour professional, the two-day event is extremely popular among those wishing to experience a truly professional round of golf. Overall scores are taken from the best score of the two players on each hole. Playing with a professional will give amateurs the opportunity to gain hints and tips from the pro as well as slice of the team prize. There will also be an informal drinks reception and prize giving on the Saturday evening where players will be able to wind down, before the final day! The final round For the final day’s play the amateurs will step aside and the pros will spend the day going head-to-head in a bid to take the Championship title. In what is sure to be an incredibly dramatic affair, every shot counts. With thousands of spectators in attendance, and highlights of the entire tournament will be broadcast on Sky Sports Golf.

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As well as the incredible four days of golfing action taking place, Trevose also has plenty more to see and do. Their luxurious accommodation options mean that guests are able to take in the sounds of the waves and smell of fresh sea air as they relax in one of their apartments, flats, bungalows or cottages that are all just a short walk away from the course itself. Trevose’s Constantine Restaurant, which overlooks the Atlantic Ocean, regularly serves up the freshest seafood and meat straight to diner’s plates. Giving people an experience to equal the one they experience on the golf course, the entire venue is dedicated to ensuring everyone’s requirements are met. For the duration of the Farmfoods European Legends Links Championship at Trevose, a tented village will be pitched and offering delicious food and drink as well as the latest in golfing fashion and accessories for people to enjoy. A gin bar will also be available where spectators will have the opportunity to sample a range of different flavoured gins whilst taking in the action. Players will also have access to state-of-the-art performance centre facilities where they will be able to test their swing and review their performances before and after taking to the Championship Course. Farmfoods European Legends Links Championship at Trevose is the third golfing event to be organised by Champions (UK) plc, and after the success of the Farmfoods British Par 3 Championship and Farmfoods European Senior Masters the event is sure to live long in the memory. Trevose Golf & Country Club also comes with a range of facilities that make it the perfect place for your clients to relax after the day’s action. This includes five star apartments, cottages and lodges, a massage and beauty salon, a swimming pool and surfing school.

Jean van de Velde

To register for free tickets to this year’s Farmfoods European Legends Link Championship, please visit: For more information on how you can sponsor or play in the event please contact Benoit Lawrence on 07792 530 020 or email:

Paul Lawrie OBE

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Sporting World

CELEBRATING 50 YEARS OF THE ULTIMATE ACT OF SPORTSMANSHIP As a two-time Major winner and Europe’s most successful ever Ryder Cup captain, Tony Jacklin CBE has many career highlights to choose from including becoming the first European winner of the US Open in over 80 years and being named in the World Golf Hall of Fame.


And there is one moment in particular which reinforced the meaning of golf being a true ‘gentleman’s game.’ Representing Great Britain in the 1969 Ryder Cup, Tony found himself up against Ryder Cup rookie Jack Nicklaus ahead of the final afternoon of play. Up until this moment, many of the matches in the tournament were marred by controversial displays of poor sportsmanship which influenced Jack’s next decision. In what has since become known as ‘The Concession’ Jack made the unprecedented decision to concede his putt and grant victory to Tony. This act had a huge impact on the entire tournament as it meant that the USA were unable to win the tournament outright. Instead, the overall score ended in a 16-16 tie, the first time the Ryder Cup had ever been shared. And, as well as becoming known as one of the world’s greatest ever examples of sportsmanship, ‘The Concession’ was the making of what has become a life-long friendship between the two players. The moment also proved to be the inspiration for The Concession Golf Club which saw Tony and Jack come together to design the Florida course. Launched in 2006, the course was designed to be different. There are no houses lining the course and it has won countless awards over the years. 50 years on from ‘The Concession’ and the pair are set to join forces once again for a very special event.

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On Saturday 6 July Tony and Jack will be heading to Wentworth Golf Club for a charity event which will combine golf with fundraising for some incredibly deserving causes. Organised by Champions (UK) plc the occasion will see money raised for The European Tour Foundation, whose aim is to improve the lives and communities all over the world, the Nicklaus Children’s Health Care Foundation, who are dedicated to providing families around the world with world-class healthcare for children and Rainbows Hospice for Children and Young People who provide vital care for children who are suffering from life-limiting or life threatening conditions. The event will begin with a brunch and a welcome from Tony and Jack before guests receive a golfing masterclass from the two professionals. Then the golf will get underway with a shotgun start from 1pm. After play has finished a drinks reception will bring the day’s players together before a night of entertainment and fine dining gets underway. Hosted by BBC Sport and News presenter Dan Walker, guests will be treated to a threecourse meal before classical crossover artist and Britain’s Got Talent star Faith Tucker takes to the stage to perform some stunning operatic hits. A prize presentation will than take place and Tony and Jack will take centre stage for a Q&A with guests. There will also be an opportunity to raise money for the event’s charities with esteemed auctioneer Charlie Ross overseeing an auction.

For more information or to book your place get in touch with Roxanna Hayes by calling 08453 31 30 31 or email

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Sporting World



On 14 October 2018 more than 84,000 fans flocked to witness the Seattle Seahawks catastrophically defeat the Oakland Raiders 27-3 at Wembley Stadium. Amidst its full calendar of football matches and music concerts, in recent years NFL has become a more regular addition on the stadium’s ‘what’s on’ guide. American football and the NFL remain one of the most watched sports in the world with a global audience of more than 100 million people predicted to have tuned in to the 2019 Super Bowl. However, it seems the sport has seen a noticeable surge in UK fans in more recent years. How NFL gained popularity in the UK While amateur American football in the UK can be traced back to World War II, the main catalyst to its popularity in the UK comes from its introduction of the official NFL London Games. Prior to this, the NFL experimented with leagues such as NFL Europe, but they largely failed to make an impact overseas. However, this all changed when the NFL International Series was announced in 2005 with the first matches being played in 2007. Until this announcement the only place fans could see their favourite teams in action is if they headed stateside. This development was followed by announcements that official NFL games would be staged outside the USA for the first time, with games in the UK.

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The first ever NFL fixture to take place in the UK saw the New York Giants narrowly defeat Miami Dolphins 13-10 in front of 81,000 people at Wembley in October 2007. The first event was a resounding success and it has continued to grow since then. Fast forward to present day and the 2019 event will see four matches take place in the capital, and it’s no longer just Wembley that hosts games with Twickenham and Tottenham Hotspurs’ new stadium set to feature matches. Why it gained popularity It isn’t just the additional exposure to the sport that has seen popularity in American football rise. Arguably the biggest draw of the sport is its unpredictable nature. It may sound cliché, but anything really can happen. Out of the 32 teams who compete in the NFL, 21 teams have won the end of season Superbowl showing just how competitive it is. While, the New England Patriots and Pittsburgh Steelers are the most successful teams (both have six Superbowl wins to their name), a whole host of teams are in for a chance of glory each season. Something that cannot always be said for other sports! Another aspect of the sport that gives everybody a chance to compete is the way that players are acquired. In football you regularly see clubs spend millions of pounds on new stars, but American football has a very different approach.

There are three ways to sign players in NFL: • Free agency – this is essentially a system where players who are without a team are able to sign for any team they want to • Trades – this relates to where teams can swap players (or draft picks but more on this in a moment) between themselves • Draft system – This is where things can really turn on their head. A process where each team can decide which best young players they want to sign, the worst team from the previous season get the first pick of players. This means even if you played badly you could theoretically end up with the better players the following season resulting in even more excitement and drama. With more NFL games set to head to the UK than ever before, it is clear to see that our love affair with the oval ball is set to continue long into the future. American Football in numbers… • Each game is 60 minutes long split into four 15 minute quarters. However, with the clock regularly stopped, matches often exceed three hours in total. If the game is tied after this, a 10 minute overtime period is played. • You can score points in a number of ways– a touchdown is worth six points, you receive three for a field goal, one or two points can be earned from a point-aftertouchdown (PAT) or by the rare safety rule which sees the opposition score two points. • More than a third of the USA’s population were predicted to have watched the 2019 Superbowl. • Green Bay Packers Quarterback, Aaron Rodgers is the highest paid NFL player in history with a salary of $76million per year! • Dallas Cowboys is the richest sport team in the world worth a staggering $4.8 billion • Indianapolis Colts star Adam Vinatieri is currently the oldest player competing in the NFL aged 46 with the all-time record held by George Blanda who played until he was 48.

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Travel and Lifestyle



Hello paradise… Experience something truly magnificent at one of Antigua’s finest beach resorts and spas. Blue Waters is wrapped around the beautiful Soldier’s Bay, surrounded by three exquisite white beaches with azure ocean views. Whether a watersport aficionado or simply looking for absolute unabridged luxury, the resort offers the very best of the Caribbean’s treasures to both families and couples. The 17 lush, tropical acres of gardens are immaculately manicured to frame the colonial-inspired architecture, complete with romantic and vibrant bougainvillea. With a plethora of TripAdvisor accreditations under its belt, as well as the prestigious ‘World Travel Award’, this sun-kissed oasis blends the best of culinary expertise, unabashed relaxation and world-class facilities into one spellbinding location. Discover uncompromised opulence in the Cove Suites Experience an abode like nothing else in one of Blue Water’s lavish Cove Suites, a shining beacon of Caribbean luxury.

Located within four Hamptons-style villas combining beach living with refined style, each suite measures more than 730 sq. ft and offers uncompromised ocean views. Guests will be able to savour the seclusion and privacy of the space, which is situated within a short walk from the main resort for added tranquility. All Cove guests have access to a private, cliff-topped infinity pool and covered terrace upon which breakfast may be taken in the morning, whilst soaking up the cobalt panorama. Each suite comprises of a spacious, open-planned living area, bedroom, bathroom with free-standing bath and expansive balcony. Whilst the Cove penthouses have three bedrooms plus a dining room, kitchen and private jacuzzi. Or why not try Rock Cottage if travelling with companions? This five bedroom, luxury abode is set on its own private headland and is one of the Caribbean’s finest residences. The last word in relaxation, Blue Water’s Cove Suites add a new dimension to easy, Caribbean living with a splash of curated glamour. A little slice of heaven on earth.

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For more information on Blue Waters and the Cove visit



The tropical twin-island paradise of Antigua and Barbuda, renowned for its 365 beautiful beaches and clear blue waters, boasts captivating culture, exhilarating activity and rich historical treasures with something to appeal to all. Antiguans are known for their hospitality and visitors are assured a welcome as warm as the weather. The destination provides a wonderful escape with its rich colonial history, first class hotels and resorts, sporting attractions and delicious cuisine. A firm A-List favourite, Antigua’s rich history and spectacular topography provide a variety of popular sightseeing opportunities. Nelson’s Dockyard, the only remaining example of a Georgian fort commissioned by the British in 1755, is perhaps the most renowned landmark.

Go on Sunday for the lively barbecue party when it is THE place to be for the weekly “jump up” where tourists and locals alike mingle and enjoy live music. Children will love the crafts market and steel bands playing from 3pm to 6pm. It is also worth venturing over to Barbuda, Antigua’s less developed sister island, known for its pristine stretch of 17-miles of pink sand beach teeming with wildlife and rare birds.

Just a short ferry ride away, it offers the ultimate Robinson Crusoe-style escape. The island is home to the largest colony of Frigate birds in the western hemisphere. Organised tours are in place for visitors to get within a few feet from the birds’ nests at The Codrington Lagoon where some 5,000 birds make their home.

Don’t leave Antigua without visiting Shirley Heights, a local beauty spot with panoramic views. High above English Harbour, the clear 360º view from the remains of the eighteenth-century British garrison, is probably the most breath-taking in the Caribbean.

The twin-island nation is also home to an array of cricketing legends including Sir Vivian Richards, Andy Roberts, Curtly Ambrose and Richie Richardson and the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium plays host to several international cricket matches and tournaments throughout the year. Whether basking in the sun or soaking up the culture, choose Antigua for an exceptional break that offers majesty, scenery and serenity. For information: or call the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority on 020 36683800.

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Travel and Lifestyle



Welcome home… Each year thousands of Brits cross the Atlantic to visit the sunnier climes of popular destinations such as Florida and the Caribbean. Boasting glorious, year-round temperatures, exceptional opportunities for outdoor living and stunning beaches, it is little wonder that these short visits spur the desire for a holiday home abroad. Enter Alistair Brown International Real Estate… Headed up by Alistair himself, a former professional golfer now boasting expertise in real estate branding, marketing and sales, Alistair Brown International Real Estate, are experts in matching people with their dream home abroad. With decades of experience in the world of hospitality and real estate development, Alistair has held key senior management positions with both global hospitality groups, including Fairmont Resorts & Hotels International and luxury builders, WCI Communities. Alistair’s clients benefit from his lifelong experiences in the travel and hospitality industry which gives him access to some of the world’s best properties. The Alistair Brown International Real Estate difference… The ability to truly understand their clients is at the heart of the Alistair Brown International Real Estate offering, as Alistair points out: “From the very first conversation, I am thinking about the client; their family, their likes and dislikes and those subtleties and emotional triggers that are important to their lifestyle.”

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“Before we think about property we need to know why they have made the decision to start the search.” He continued, “Everything I learn about them creates a vision, which I then use to hand pick properties for their unique situation.” Delivering a truly bespoke experience, Alistair has 25 years’ experience and his ability to find the right destination and property for each client is based upon a detailed understanding of their needs and desires. Your dream location... Whether an ultra-modern villa or an attractive home suitable for a growing family, the Alistair Brown team help clients invest in the right property for them. With years of experience in global locations such as South Florida, Orlando, Barbados, London, Paris, Tuscany and Catalunya, Spain, ABIRE has direct access to many developments and investments, often before they are offered to the general public.

As an International Brand Ambassador with the famed, One Sotheby’s Miami group, Alistair has unparalleled access to some of the world’s most beautiful and unique properties with current offerings including:

Alistair’s dedicated focus on his clients and business ethos reflects the values that are important to me and it was a pleasure to work with him.

• The unique Grove Resort & Water Park, Orlando, a next door neighbour to Walt Disney World

Bursting with enthusiasm, Alistair’s knowledge and network proved invaluable and he took care of everything - I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend him.”

• Margaritaville Resort, Orlando

So, let your journey begin…

• One Thousand Museum, Downtown Miami

Delivering the personal touch, Alistair Brown International Real Estate is based in both the UK and USA and is on hand to help with every aspect of your property search.

• Aventura Park Square, Aventura, Florida John Hayes, CEO, Champions (UK) plc, said of Alistair Brown International Real Estate: “The personal service I have received from Alistair Brown International Real Estate has been second to none. At every step of the way, he made it his business to understand what was important to me and my family and designed his offering around this. I felt that Alistair not only listened to what I wanted, but that he also understood me and my motivations.

To discuss your requirements or to find out more, contact Alistair Brown International Real Estate on 0141 483 8484. Alternatively email Our website is

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Travel and Lifestyle



Windmill Village Hotel Golf Club & Spa

Windmill Village Hotel Golf Club & Spa

Manor Hotel Meriden

Windmill Village Hotel Golf Club & Spa

With its impressive Georgian façade this delightful hotel nestles in the heart of the village of Meriden, yet is just minutes away from Birmingham International Airport, the NEC and the National Motorcycle Museum.

Located in stunning rural countryside, the Windmill Village Hotel offers quality accommodation as well as a diverse range of conference and banqueting facilities.

Last year saw the arrival of the stunning Marco’s Steakhouse Bar & Grill restaurant which offers affordable glamour and a delicious menu featuring fresh seasonal produce. Marco’s is open from noon daily for both resident and non-residential guests to enjoy everything from cocktails and afternoon tea, to lunches and dinners.

The leisure facilities are extensive and include a 20-metre pool, steam room and sauna together with a state-of-the-art fitness suite. The Spa @ the Windmill offers a wide range of treatments using Elemis products. The 18-hole par 70 parkland golf course completes the facilities and buggies and trolleys can be hired; a putting green is also available.

Manor Hotel Meriden

Manor Hotel Meriden

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Located in one of London’s most exclusive neighbourhoods, Jumeirah Lowndes Hotel offers a warm welcome with a choice of stylish guest rooms and suites. Enjoy modern cuisine in Lowndes Bar & Kitchen, discover London with a self guided tour on our complimentary Belgravia Bikes and relax in the indoor swimming pool or jacuzzi at the nearby Peak Health Club & Spa. | 020 7823 1234

When we look to the future, we see ourselves looking back. The new 911. Timeless Machine.

Porsche recommends

Porsche Centre Solihull Highlands Road Solihull West Midlands B90 4GT 0121 745 9911


911 Carrera S official fuel consumption (WLTP): combined 10.4-9.9 l/100km (27.2-28.5 mpg). CO2 emissions (NEDC equivalent): 205 g/km. Figures are intended for comparability purposes. The fuel consumption achieve under real driving conditions and CO produced will depend of factors including the accessories fitted(X.X after registration, in driving styles, Official fuel economy figures for theyouXXXXXXX in life mpg (l/100km): urban X.X X.X upon (X.Xa number – X.X), extra urban X.X – X.X – X.X), variations combined weather conditions and vehicle load. X.X – X.X (X.X – X.X). CO2 emissions: XXX – XXX g/km. The mpg and CO2 figures quoted are sourced from official EU-regulated tests, are provided for comparability purposes and may not reflect your actual driving experience. 2

Travel and Lifestyle



Rise to new heights in Birmingham’s most distinctive hotel

form of the Shakina Urban Spa. The spa’s location is predivulged by the soft scents emitted from beyond its doors.

Towering over its neighbouring buildings, Park Regis Birmingham is a site to behold. As an increasingly established landmark on the dynamic city’s skyline, the hotel rises up to any challenge, corporate or personal, to offer a truly exceptional service across its 253 rooms and suites.

Once inside, the true escapism begins as experienced staff are on-hand to ensure that every guest is transported into a state of utter bliss thanks to their vast expertise, the elegant surroundings and expansive spa menu.

However, the imposingly impressive structure of the Park Regis belies a much softer and subtly sleek interior. Stepping foot in the lavish lobby, guests can expect warm polished marble, plush Ottoman seating and ambient lighting, all of which are coupled with a hospitable greeting from the doormen and reception staff alike. This touch of class extends up a floor into the bedrooms where comfort and quiet luxury are the order of the day. Finished in muted slate and jewel tones, and complete with full rain showers, the décor makes for the perfect sanctuary at any time. Benefiting from a wealth of amenities, each room is beautifully appointed and a few floors up, the hotel also offers the largest Presidential Suite in Birmingham: a stunning 151 square metre oasis that is available for personal or corporate hire. Spa seekers rejoice at Shakina Urban Spa No luxury hotel would be complete without world-class spa facilities and Park Regis Birmingham offers this in the

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Complete with a plethora of treatment rooms and full gym facilities, Shakina is a retreat that will soothe even the most exhausted of minds. And why not finish the experience with an afternoon tea in the 1565 restaurant and bar? Conveniently situated within the plush lobby, 1565 showcases the very best in British gastronomic delights. Go for a business meeting… stay for the culture When it comes to creating the perfect corporate environment, Park Regis’ dedicated business suites offer a wealth of facilities to suit a range of events and capacities. The versatility of each meeting room provides the perfect backdrop for inspirational staff-training or impressing new clients. However, why not make a weekend of it and soak up the culture on offer in Birmingham? As the UK’s second biggest city, a variety of activities and sights are in situ of the hotel, suitable for couples and families alike. From the iconic Cadbury World to the vast National Sea Life Centre, guests can fill their days with some of the area’s most loved activities, each situated on the Park Regis’

doorstep. Or why not enjoy the country’s largest collection of pre-Raphaelite art at the Birmingham Gallery or catch a show at the historical Old Rep Theatre? World class cuisine is more convenient than ever It is no secret that Birmingham is home to some of Britain’s best eateries and iconic food joints. However, for the weary traveller, experiencing a taste of this delectable fare needn’t involve leaving the hotel. As aforementioned, the 1565 Restaurant and Bar serves up some of the best locally sourced dishes alongside an extensive menu of creative cocktails. And for those looking for something a little different, the restaurant’s fabulous terrace allows guests to enjoy the cityscape throughout the year. Complete with snug throws, comfy seats, twinkling lights and a faux fire to stay toasty, enjoy a tipple under the stars on a cosy winter evening. However, during the summer, the area truly comes to life with an array of delicious cocktails and drinks on offer, all set against the dramatic skyline.

Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, 1565 showcases an extensive, à la carte menu. So, whether the city’s best brunch is the order of the day or a quiet, ambient drink is needed, Park Regis caters for all imaginable culinary scenarios within one spellbinding venue. Whether a city-break escape is long overdue or extending a business trip is something that appeals, the Park Regis Birmingham offers everything needed, plus an added touch of luxury for a truly memorable experience. With rooms that are more affordable than expected and a wealth of world-class facilities, why not plan an urban retreat to Birmingham’s most vibrant hotel? @ParkRegisBirm @parkregisbirmingham/

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Travel and Lifestyle



Whether it’s a beach holiday in a tropical resort or a retreat a little closer to home, is there really any better opportunity than a summer holiday to get acquainted with a good book, or two?

With no interruptions and plenty of time to whittle away, a captivating fiction or non-fiction book can make for the perfect travel companion. We have shared our pick of seven scorchers that you should be making space for in your suitcase this summer.

You’d Be Mine – Erin Hahn

The timing for romance novel You’d Be Mine couldn’t be more perfect for author Erin Hahn as her debut novel’s country music themes will draw-in those still teary-eyed over the blockbuster A Star is Born. The book tells the story of American country musician Annie who is amidst a hiatus from the spotlight following the death of her parents. But unbeknownst to Annie, the career of mega star and notorious bad boy Clay, hangs in the balance as his label threatens to drop him should he fail to convince Annie to embark on a summer tour with him. Swayed by Clay’s smooth talking and annoyingly good looks, the talented Annie agrees, and the pair soon find themselves spending one long, hot summer fighting a battle between head over heart. An easy and addictive read You’d Be Mine is screaming out to be read on a sun lounger with a cocktail in hand.

The Suspect – Fiona Barton No summer is complete without a psychological thriller that gets people talking. Last year it was Dan Mallory’s The Woman in the Window that took residence in suitcases.

Now it’s time for New York Times’ bestselling author, Fiona Barton to shine with her latest offering The Suspect. The worst nightmare of any parent comes true in this gripping thriller when two 18-year-old girls go missing in Thailand. As the mysterious case unravels across 381 pages, journalist Kate Waters takes centre stage in the book finding herself first to the story and first to discover the truth. Perfect for whittling away the hours on a long-haul flight, The Suspect is a real page turner with twists and turns waiting around every corner.

Machines Like Me – Ian McEwen After nearly three years without a release, fans of Ian McEwen’s work have something new to get their teeth into this summer. Machines Like Me whisks readers off to an alternative 1980s London and focusses on the life of protagonist Charlie and his relationship with student Miranda. When Charlie’s financial status suddenly changes for the better, he invests in Adam – one of the first synthetic humans to have been created. Able to program his personality, Charlie makes Adam handsome, strong and intelligent. What follows though is a love triangle which throws up a moral dilemma of epic proportions for everyone involved. While humour has been cleverly threaded throughout the novel, Machines Like Me is wrapped in a wider message in true McEwen form, and will leave readers searching for deep answers to humanity.

Burnout – Emily & Amelia Nagoski Summer holidays offer the rare opportunity to unwind from the everyday, but with relaxing, comes reflection. Burnout: The Secret to Solving the Stress Cycle is one for women as two sisters, Emily & Amelia Nagoski seek to confront and break down the barriers between women and wellbeing.

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The Dreamers – Karen Thompson Walker New York Times’ Bestselling Author, Karen Thompson Walker proves there is no end to her imagination with her science-fiction novel The Dreamers which is sure to grip readers from beginning to end. Set in an isolated college town in Southern California, one night a girl falls asleep and doesn’t wake. She’s not dead, she’s asleep. But when she is unawakenable the case perplexes paramedics and doctors. What ensues is a domino effect as more and more students fall into the same state of sleep. A town which is seemingly beyond repair and a quarantine already established, a psychiatrist is brought in to uncover the truth behind the outbreak. She finds the sleeping students have the highest level of brain activity ever recoded which poses the question ‘what are they all dreaming about?’

When All Is Said – Anne Griffin 336 pages, one man, one night and five toasts. When All Is Said is a tale of one man’s evening of self-discovery. Anne Griffin is the mastermind behind the novel and tells the story of Maurice Hannigan. Set in a hotel bar, Maurice makes five different drink orders and dedicates each one to someone vital in his life. Raising a toast to his older brother, sister-in-law, newborn daughter, son and late wife, he tells the story of his life. Themes of regret, feud, love and triumph all come into focus in this novel which will leave readers thinking carefully about which ‘five’ they would toast, and what they would say.

Mistress of the Ritz – Melanie Benjamin Just a year after publishing her seventh novel, Girls in the Picture, historical fictionist Melanie Benjamin has released her eighth in the form of Mistress of the Ritz. A stunning wartime story based on a real-life American woman, the book centres around actress Blanche and her husband Claude who worked secretly for the French Resistance during World War II. The non-fiction book is packed full of worksheets, exercises and the latest in scientific discoveries, and explores how women can work to complete the biological stress cycle, monitor the brain to regulate emotion and the ways in which ‘Bikini Industrial Complex’ is making it difficult for women to truly love their bodies.

When the Nazis occupied Paris in 1940, many of the party resided in The Hotel Ritz, where Blanche and Claude, who worked as the hotel’s manager, were living. Dreaming of a Nazi-free city, while living under the same roof as the Germans the pair fearlessly and secretly joined the French Resistance.

Empowering and optimistic, Burnout is a book for women looking to make some positive and long-lasting changes.

A courageous tale of a couple’s fight for freedom in a city in crisis, Mistress of the Ritz is ripe with tension and one that readers won’t want to put down.

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Nestled in the heart of England is a four-star luxury country house hotel that can only be described as ‘a venue for all occasions’. Whether these are private, personal or corporate, Nailcote Hall lends itself to a huge range of uses and whatever the customer needs this versatile country house hotel delivers. Nailcote Hall is well known in the golfing fraternity for playing host to the increasingly popular Farmfoods British Par 3 Championship which attracts some of the biggest names in sport, as well as major TV personalities and celebrities. The event is set to return to the Cromwell Course this year between 6–9 August, with even more top golfing professionals as well as a whole host of famous faces from the world of sport and entertainment taking part. Last year saw the likes of Harry Potter actors James and Oliver Phelps, former Strictly Come Dancing judge Len Goodman, Coronation Street star William Roache MBE and former Wales, Arsenal and Celtic striker John Hartson all in action.

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Two-time major winner Tony Jacklin CBE will once again be on hand to oversee proceedings as the event’s host, and a stellar list of professional and celebrity players is set to be announced in the coming weeks and months. Last year saw Challenge Tour star, Steven Tiley come out on top winning the generous €50,000 prize. Of course, you don’t have to be professional or famous to go around the challenging Cromwell course – players of any age and level of skill are all welcome to ‘stay, pay and play’ on what is acknowledged to be Europe’s best par 3 course. Golfing is just one of the many attractions at this incredible hotel, which provides the most amazing entertainment and party nights, running hugely successful charity events, as is the backdrop to hundreds of weddings as well as accommodating some of the biggest names in the world of business and commerce. The conference facilities at Nailcote Hall are second to none, as are the wedding reception rooms, the luxury marquee, the leisure club, the fine dining in the Oak Room

restaurant and so much more. The options available to visitors are virtually endless, whether they are looking for leisure and pleasure at the weekends or serious business functions Monday to Friday. Indeed, the hotel’s guest book boasts high-profile visitors such as the current Prime Minister Theresa May, former Deputy PM Baron John Prescott, former Chancellor Denis Healey MBE and global star of stage and screen, the inimitable Dame Joan Collins. If cabaret is your kind of entertainment, Nailcote Hall puts on a fantastic show that has to be seen to be believed. Love party nights or want an unforgettable wedding reception? Nailcote Hall’s owner Rick Cressman has a saying: “Bring your party to our party!” and offers a choice of rooms to suit everyone’s taste. These include Rick’s Bar which is ideal for entertaining up to 120 people, the massive marquee which caters for up to 300 or a new upstairs clubhouse, which has a superb private area for intimate groups of up to 50 guests. Maybe you are looking to rest your weary head in the most luxurious surroundings possible after a tiring day, or to surprise your loved one with a romantic overnight break, or to have your wedding guests stay over for breakfast the next day. If any of these apply, Nailcote Hall has 49 incredible bedrooms, including – of course – the bridal suite, and all are beautifully decorated in the style you would expect for a 17th century building full of English charm. The high quality furnishings and sumptuous beds, including fourposters, are complemented by the most contemporary design and modern facilities such as flat-screen TVs with satellite channels.

Nailcote Hall also boasts beautiful gardens and surrounding woodland for those who love to relax out in the open as well as a croquet lawn, an area for playing pétanque and a jogging track. For relaxing indoors there is a stunning Roman style bath 14-metre swimming pool, a well-equipped gymnasium, a jacuzzi and a steam room. On top of all this, one of the major attractions of staying at Nailcote Hall is its location. Located just 10 minutes from Birmingham Airport, close to Birmingham International Railway Station and the National Exhibition Centre. It is also no more than half an hour from Birmingham city centre, 15 minutes from Solihull and Coventry, around 20 minutes from Warwick and Stratford-upon-Avon, and just 10 minutes away from Warwick University and Coventry University. The hotel will be even more accessible when the planned HS2 high-speed railway connects Birmingham International with London, Manchester, Sheffield and the East Midlands. Rick Cressman, Owner says: “Nailcote Hall is a home away from home for business travellers and the general public. It is just perfect for birthday parties – whether you’re 18 or 80 – as well as hen parties, charity events and a whole host of corporate activities. And if you don’t have time to enjoy the beautiful gardens, the leisure room, the gymnasium or the golf course, you can always pop in for one of our wonderful Sunday lunches. Freshly carved roast beef with Yorkshire pudding, mouth-watering steak Diane, delightful crêpes Suzette – whatever the customer’s taste, we can cater for it.

To find out more about Nailcote Hall visit: or call us on 024 7646 6174

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Travel and Lifestyle

EXPERIENCE THE HIDDEN GEMS OF BERLIN From its vibrant nightlife and contemporary lifestyle to its stunning architecture, Berlin has plenty to shout about. Germany’s capital is the second largest in Europe and has without doubt became one of the world’s most popular tourist destinations. More than 30 million people visit the city each year, with many people in the UK choosing it as a destination for a city break. Away from the famous landmarks such as Checkpoint Charlie and the Brandenburg Gate, the city has plenty of other hidden gems that are equally as extraordinary. We have pinpointed some of the best places you can explore.


Explore a different kind of museum… Many of Europe’s major cities have a world famous museums and art galleries that are always a popular choice among tourists and Berlin is no different. These museums provide guests with an insight into Berlin’s rich history and culture. But if you want a different kind of museum experience, then the Body Worlds Museum might be right up your street. Located close to the famous shopping district Alexander Platz, this museum is like nothing you will have ever experienced before. Body Worlds have museums all over Europe which give a unique insight into the human body. The museum displays real human bodies that have been donated for science. Using the plastination process which maintains organs and bones, the museum takes you on an exhibition of happiness, pressure, gluttony, moderation and chance & destiny.

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Enjoy the art of the Berlin Wall Since the Berlin Wall was demolished in 1989 and Germany unified in 1990, the memorial and museum to the wall is a must see for tourists. And, while it’s certainly a big part of Berlin’s history, the iconic wall’s artwork is also worthy of a mention. Known as the East Side Gallery, the 1,316m long mural is the longest open air gallery in the world and features artwork from more than 105 different artists. The purpose of the artwork is to demonstrate peace between society and people following over 20 years of separation when the Berlin Wall split the city.

Check out a German food market Germany is proud of its food culture, (you can’t go anywhere in the country without coming across a famous Bratwurst!), so if you are a foodie, heading to a local food market is a must when visiting the city. Berlin once had 14 stunning markets, but sadly only three remain with Markthalle Neun being one of the most historic, dating back to 1891. They put on a ‘street food Thursday’ as well as breakfast market once a month. As well as this there is a fantastic fleamarket at Mauerpark. Held every Sunday along where the Berlin Wall once stood, there are food stalls, beer gardens and even a karaoke area for people to enjoy.

Discover the bars of Prenzlauer Berg Berlin’s nightlife is world renowned (over 1,000 shops stay open late specifically to stock beer) and the regions of Mitte, Hackescher Markt and Warschauer Strasse are arguably the most popular hotspots in the city when it comes to partying. However, the district of Prenzlauer Berg is a bit of a hidden gem when it comes to more quirky bars. The east of the city is generally considered the most authentic part of Berlin and this certainly rings true here. Germany’s drinking culture is much more relaxed than the UK, and Rhabarber exemplifies this. As soon as you enter the bar you’ll be struck by its character. From its retro décor to unique features including a wall full of books and a chair hanging from the ceiling. And, the staff are friendly too. You’ll receive a free bag of popcorn on arrival (which can be refilled at any time) before you are presented with an extensive menu of delicious German beers and cocktails. Want a particular song playing? Simply let one of the bar staff know and they’ll let you link your phone up to their sound system.

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Escape to Eden Introducing our award-winning Eden Hotel Collection. Each of our carefully chosen nine hotels offers guests a seductive slice of luxury. All are exquisitely unique but share the same value of providing guests with total relaxation. From historic architecture and peaceful surroundings to outstanding spas and food and drink, our guests will experience a heavenly escape when visiting our Eden Hotel Collection.


















Travel and Lifestyle




Set in the beautiful countryside of South Lincolnshire, close to the borders of both Rutland and Nottinghamshire, Irnham Hall offers an exquisite country feel with a touch of timeless luxury.

The stunning estate is the private family home of the Benton-Jones family and is set within beautiful manicured gardens and extensive grounds. With its attractive grey stone and mullion windows, the house has been in the lineage for five generations. For the ceremony itself, the beautiful Orangery is licensed for civil ceremonies or civil partnerships and will comfortably seat well in excess of 100, or for a more religious affair the local church is little more than a five minute walk from the venue. Wedding parties will enjoy the exclusive use of Irnham Hall’s Summer House and Walled Garden, the former being a sensitively converted building that blends high timber beamed ceilings with vast floor-to-ceiling windows that flood the space with natural light. There is a wonderful intimacy about the Summer House that provides an individual atmosphere for a truly special wedding day and the enchanting space is perfect for both small occasions and larger events. However, perhaps the true jewel in the crown is Irnham’s walled garden. The beautiful lawn is the ideal location for stunning portraits and the privacy of the secluded space will allow everyone to relax and enjoy a game of croquet

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over drinks and canapés. Reminiscent of a HodgsonBurnett novel, the garden is simply magical. Of course, nothing is more important at a bespoke wedding than the food and drink. Whilst there are no in-house caterers, the venue provides a curated and approved list of exceptional local catering and hospitality companies, all of whom have delivered on countless occasions. There is also ample room for a live band or DJ to accompany a first dance or for guests and loved ones to twirl the night away in style against the dramatic backdrop of the woodenbeamed Summer House . The family also own a select number of elegantly curated properties around the village, all of which provide ideal accommodation options for the wedding party and guests. These include cottages and a Bed & Breakfast. Irnham hall is unique, vibrant and altogether enchanted, offering something distinctively different for those who want an easy elegance in situ of immaculately maintained lawns that will bring photographic memories to life.

For further details please telephone 01476 552 027 or email

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FOOD AND DRINK Bintu or Recipes From A Pantry as she is known in the blogosphere, is a leading food writer and blogger. Sierra Leonean by birth, she specialises in creating easy to prepare but rich and dynamic big flavour recipes that the whole family can enjoy. Bintu’s wide repertoire makes her well placed to advise on the very best restaurants that the area has to offer. The West Midlands is a real gem of fine eating establishments ranging from casual options to Michelin starred cuisine. However, with so much choice on offer, Bintu has compiled a list of must visit eateries that any foodie needs to frequent when in the area. With a rare ability to fuse the casual British tradition of fish and chips with a refined gastronomic edge, Finest Catch is a cut above the rest. What could be better than salty, crispy home cooked chips with light and fragrant battered cod? With establishments in both Henley and Solihull, Finest Catch delivers just this within a delightful vintage-diner inspired setting. Summer is also the perfect time for a choice tipple in the garden, and this year Shawbury Wines is leading the way with a fine selection of bottles. As a family run business, the West Midlands based merchants offer a carefully curated selection of wines, each individually chosen for their exceptional quality and body of flavour.

The Easiest Ever Meringue LaSummer Fruit yer Cake Ingredient

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For more information on Bintu or to enquire about booking her for your brand’s campaign please contact Influencer Champions on 0203 9580 427 or email

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A warm welcome is guaranteed at The Malt Shovel, Barston Nestled in the village of Barston The Malt Shovel is a delightful village inn set in picturesque Solihull with close proximity to the N.E.C. The pub encompasses a busy bar with an easy atmosphere centred around a wood-burning fire where a selection of real ales are on offer. When it comes to dining, the establishment is also a cut above the rest. The food, prepared by head chef Max and his team, combines the freshest seasonal ingredients with classic recipes for a modern take on traditional pub grub, as well as a daily fish specials board. Served in a separate restaurant away from the hustle and bustle of the main bar, delicious fare is guaranteed with something to suit the entire family from the famous salmon fishcakes to sumptuous Sunday roasts. With regular live music, gins of the month and various other events across their calendar, The Malt Shovel is the perfect venue for an easy summers evening, drinking with close friends in a relaxed yet stylish environment or for an intimate dinner for two. For more information or to make a booking, please visit



Leamington Spa, Warwickshire

Leamington Spa, Warwickshire

At Marco Pierre White’s Steakhouse, Bar and Grill it isn’t just about great food and refreshing drinks, but the overall dining experience. The perfect place to go with family and friends for an evening meal, quick bite or even a few drinks, the vibrant, yet relaxed atmosphere is what sets the eatery apart from others in the region.

For those looking for a high-quality, fine dining experience, the Dining Room at Mallory Court boasts opulent surroundings, a world-class menu and a huge number of awards and accolades including an ‘AA Notable Wine List’ award. The beautiful oak-panelled restaurant has incomparable views of the gardens and Warwickshire countryside beyond.

Providing lunch, dinner, dessert and kids menus, there is something to set everybody’s taste buds alight. Renowned for its steak and grill options, people can choose from ribeye, sirloin, fillet, t-bone and for those special occasions, chateaubriand. The same goes for the restaurant’s steakhouse burgers which are all finished with a sweet barbecue glaze. When it comes to other mains, people can choose from the likes of confit duck leg à la Parisienne with béarnaise sauce, roast rump of lamb à la dijonnaise, a pig mixed grill and much more.

Executive Chef Adam Brown and his team are deeply passionate about each and every dish, and it is this dedication that has earned Mallory Court’s Dining Room a coveted three AA Rosettes. With menus bursting with rich flavour and innovation, the dishes reflect the best seasonal produce from local suppliers and the hotel’s own well stocked kitchen gardens and are regularly refreshed to showcase the latest creations from the kitchen.

The restaurant is also home to a wonderful cocktail menu, all of which are inspired by their drink’s origins and feature everyday favourites such as mojitos and cosmopolitans, as well as more contemporary choices, including Mai Tais, a popular cocktail in Tahitian.

Opening hours: Monday - Friday 12pm - 3pm / 6pm - 10pm Saturday 12pm - 5pm / 5pm - 10pm

Food Served: Open all day Monday to Saturday 12noon - 2.30pm

Hours: Monday – Saturday 12 til 12 (Food served 12 - 2:30 / 6 - 9:30)

Sunday 12pm - 4pm / 6pm - 9pm

(last orders) 6.30pm - 9.30pm (last orders)

Afternoon Tea

and for Sunday lunch 12noon - 3.30pm (last orders).

Sunday 12 – 7pm (Food 12 - 5pm)

Monday - Saturday 12pm - 3pm

It is closed on Sunday evening.

The Malt Shovel Barston Lane, Barston, Solihull, B92 0JP T: (01675) 443 223

Marco Pierre White Steakhouse, Bar & Grill Best Western Plus® Manor Hotel 127 Main Road, Meriden, Solihull CV7 7NH T: 01676 522 735

The Dining Room at Mallory Court Harbury Lane, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire CV33 9QB T: (01926) 330 214

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The Finest Catch Henley Birmingham Road, Henley-in-Arden Warwickshire, B95 5QR. 01564 793783 The Finest Catch Shirley 1097 Stratford Road, Shirley, Solihull, B90 4EB. 0121 745 175

Where people come first and come back again. For the sweet tooth Those looking for something sweet haven’t been neglected either, with sumptuous dessert options such as hot sticky toffee pudding served with ice cream, and, continuing their American diner theme, baked New York style cheesecake and warm Alabama chocolate fudge cake can be enjoyed. The dessert options don’t stop here with Finest Catch also providing their famous selection of delicious sundaes with favourites including the ultimate knickerbocker glory, banana split and hot chocolate fudge sundae all available. For those looking to quench their thirst

For the traditionalists Well known for its classic fish and chip dishes which continue to delight people throughout the West Midlands, Finest Catch boasts a crowd-pleasing menu full of classic dishes. From the highest quality fish including freshly battered cod or haddock, to incredible desserts, Finest Catch has something to suit everyone’s taste buds.

Having an evening meal after a long week at work? Then why not sample one of their beers, ciders or wines from their fully licenced bar. Soft drinks are also available and Finest Catch have also paired their fish and chips with another British institution, the cup of tea, with unlimited refills on their tea and hot drinks options. Their thick US style milkshakes come in a variety of flavours and are always a hit with diners.

Guests at the two 1950s American style Finest Catch restaurants, which can be found in Warwickshire’s Henley-in-Arden and Solihull, are treated to freshly battered fish served with chips made from the very best British potatoes. For those looking for more Their menu goes beyond chippy classics too, featuring a variety of options to choose from including BBQ rack of ribs, fish, seafood and chicken paella and sautéed or battered king prawns with chips or salad. Also catering for those with dietary requirements, Finest Catch have their own meat free veggie kitchen section on their menu with vegetarian sausages and burgers also on offer. Pizza may not be a dish you would typically associate with a fish and chip restaurant, but at the Finest Catch cheese and pepperoni options are available, served with a bowl of their golden chips. All main courses are half price from Sunday through to Tuesday, giving diners the opportunity to experience more of what is on offer.

! y it l a i c e p S r Ou



off when you spend £40

off when you spend £40

off when you spend £40

Vouchers valid until 31 December 2019

Vouchers valid until 31 December 2019

Vouchers valid until 31 December 2019

A WARM WELCOME IS GUARANTEED AT THE MALT SHOVEL, BARSTON The Malt Shovel at Barston is an Independent Country Pub set in the picturesque village of Barston, close to Solihull and the N.E.C. The welcoming bar has a vibrant easy atmosphere for both drinking and dining. With an open fire in the winter and well kept English garden with terrace for al fresco dining. The separate barn converted restaurant is both relaxed and inviting, showing off the original beams and natural wood. Both serve the full a la carte menu plus the well known daily fish specials board, along with traditional roasts on Sundays. Max (Head Chef and co-owner) and his dedicated team are passionate about using fresh seasonal

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ingredients, especially shown in the daily fish specials board. Max works closely with all the suppliers to ensure we get the best quality, locally sourced produce. Together with Helen (General Manager and coowner) at the helm they have built an excellent reputation for friendly yet professional service matched with tasty, simple well presented food; providing an all round wonderful guest experience. Regular events run such as Seasonal Tasting Menu & Wine pairing evenings, ‘Dirty Jazz’ Live music nights with Andi Wolf , check out social media for latest news!

The Malt Shovel at Barston

Opening Hours

Food Serving Hours

Barston Lane,

Monday – Saturday

Monday – Saturday

Barston, Solihull, B92 0JP

12 noon – 12 midnight

12 noon – 2.30pm & 6pm - 9.30pm

01675 443 223

Sunday 12 noon – 7pm

Sunday 12 noon – 5pm


AT THE BELFRY HOTEL & RESORT Located at the award-winning Belfry Hotel & Resort, the Brabazon Bar is one of the liveliest destination bars in the region. Enjoy a range of classic cocktails, fine wines, Champagnes and an array of gins. With live music every Thursday and Friday and a vibrant atmosphere, it’s the perfect place to be seen.


01675 238 600 |

Travel and Lifestyle

ULTIMATE GUIDE TO: GIN FESTIVALS Everyone is talking about Gin.

Although the juniper-based spirit has been around for centuries, in recent years it has undergone a trendy revival of sorts, with a national ‘Gin fever’ of epic proportions underway. Blame it on its essential place within modern cocktail culture or the “Instagrammable” nature of the Gin and Tonic glass, but there can be no denying just how Gin obsessed Brits have become.


With this in mind, it seems only fitting that such a phenomenon has joined forces with another British cultural institution: The festival. Gin tasting festivals and events are popping up all over the country as lovers of the spirit clamour to get a taste of the wide variety of tipples on offer from distilleries across the nation. In this handy guide, Inspirational Birmingham has selected some of the best events for you to attend that combine culture, music, food and of course Gin in perfect harmony: The Prosecco and Gin festival: The Custard Factory, Birmingham, Saturday 25 May 2019 Lovers of prosecco and Gin can come together to enjoy their favourite mixes in style at this unique event. This small, family run festival is a thoroughly relaxed affair with over 40 Gins on offer as well as a ‘bubble bar’ with a large selection of proseccos, spumantes, sparkling wines and cavas. Most of what’s on offer also follows the same family ethos, heeding from small, independent manufacturers. There will also be a wide selection of music, food and entertainment throughout the event. Tickets start at £15.51. The Gin and Meat Carnival: Mutt Motorcycles, Digbeth, Birmingham, Saturday 29 June 2019 Get ready for Gin-fuelled shenanigans at this Gin-obsessed, experimental food festival by organisers Taste & Liquor. The unique festival combines the delicious flavours and aromas of a BBQ and meat festival with a delicious selection

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of the world’s finest selection of Gins. Inspired by legendary Chef Julia Child who said: “Red meat and Gin…were one of the reasons for her longevity…” the event promises to be a true feast for the senses. Tickets are also a modest £8.14. Topiary Gin Festival: Billesley Manor, Alcester, Warwick, Sunday 7 July 2019 A day that is a must for all Gin lovers, set in the beautiful 100-year-old topiary garden of Billesley Manor, this chilled Sunday event is guaranteed not to disappoint. Tickets include a souvenir branded Gin goblet, Gin menu detailing all flavours and options, plus a welcome G&T supplied by Shakespeare Distillery. You will also be able to purchase your favourite bottle to take home from each of our distilleries. Make sure to bring your own picnic blanket and parasols for you and your friends to sit around the Topiary Garden too. Entrance to the festival starts at £19.00.

A World of Botanicals Gin Tasting: Leamington Wine Company, Leamington Spa, Friday 3May 2019 Relax and enjoy a Gin sampling evening with friends or colleagues as the Leamington Wine Company showcases their journey through Gin. Try up to 30 carefully selected Gins ranGing from light florals through to stronger navy options, which all demonstrate the versatility of the spirit. The event is highly exclusive with a limited number of tickets on offer in order to keep the setting intimate and allow for attendees to ask questions. For ticket enquiries call 01926 888994. And other considerations… If you can’t get enough of the spirit, there are also dedicated events taking place annually. Inspirational Birmingham has selected some of the best below to inspire further adventures within the world of Gin: Dr Hardwicke’s Gin Emporium: The Windsor Castle Inn, Stourbridge For a truly unique day out, Dr Hardwicke’s 1920s inspired art deco Gin bars showcase over 35 varieties of Gin across several exciting formats. From traditional Gin tasting experiences to blending masterclasses you will be spoilt for choice when selecting an event. There is also the option of an overnight stay for those who want a truly comprehensive tasting experience! Events start from around £80 with bookings available from The Windsor Castle Inn.

The Gin Vault: Canal District, Birmingham Located in the historic canal area of Birmingham, the Gin vault is a unique bar offering 200+ varieties of Gin with expertise from knowledgeable staff. Every Gin and tonic is created with a unique mixer and concept to make it truly unique, and wine, beer and cider are also served alongside an extensive tapas menu. The Vault also showcases a variety of more unique and tailored Gin-based experiences that are truly unlike anything else: from a Gin cocktail masterclass showing how to make the perfect blend to a Gin and tonic afternoon tea and Gin journey through the flavour profiles. Experiences beGin at around £30 pp including a tapas selection and mixers.

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Food and Drink



“Too much of anything is bad, but too much good whisky is barely enough” These are the words of legendary wordsmith Mark Twain, and his sentiment is still echoed by millions of us around the world. Whether it is on the rocks, in a cocktail or with a mixer, whisky remains one of the most popular beverages around and this popularity is showing no signs of waning. With a value of over £4bn, the whisky industry made up 20% of the UK’s food and drink exports last year reflecting just how well-loved it remains. The beverage has also become a favourite drink of some of the world’s most famous figures, with legendary soprano, Frank Sinatra even rumoured to have been buried with a bottle of his favourite tipple. Nowadays, several celebrities can be found endorsing and owning whisky brands including David Beckham OBE, Mila Kunis and Aaron Paul.

However, before the big budget brand endorsements with famous faces, the routes of the distillation process used for whisky can be traced all the way back to the 2nd millennium BC. But, the earliest hints of these distillations being used for alcohol come from 13 th century Italy where wine was distilled. This practice soon spread to the rest of Europe and it was in Scotland and Ireland where the first whiskys began to be produced. Since then, the drink has become commonplace in bars, restaurants, and homes all over the world. There are two main types of whisky– malt or grain and each have their own distinct tastes and textures. Every country also put their own unique twist on the classic drink and distilleries can be found in most countries. The distillery process is by no means quick, and just like with other alcoholic drinks, can take several years to complete. For example, UK and EU law dictate that Scotch whisky needs to be distilled for at least three years, and it is not uncommon for some beverages to be distilled for over a decade to achieve the best taste. Cocktails have also played a big role in the illustrious history of whisky, creating new ways for people to enjoy the drink. One of the most traditional whisky based cocktails is the Old Fashioned. Developed in the late 1800s the drink incorporates citrus fruits such as orange and lemon along with bitters to create a strong flavour. This was also notably the drink of choice for the character Don Draper in the drama Mad Men. Bitters are also used in a Manhattan, a cocktail that is often used with American rye whiskey. Invented in honour of presidential candidate Samuel J. Tilden, the drink was created in New York’s Manhattan club. There are many variations of the cocktail, but most include Vermouth wine to give it a sweet taste. Glenfiddich, Balvenie and Johnnie Walker, the list of illustrious whiskies goes on and on, and this is one of the reasons that the drink remains so popular. As already mentioned these whiskies are produced at distilleries across the globe, so where are the best places to grab a glass?

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USA The United States is home to more than 2,000 whiskey distilleries, and each of the 50 states has at least one of their own. This means there are a whole host of different types to sample across the pond. Kentucky and Tennessee are home to the biggest brands, but for something a bit different, the nation’s biggest states, California and Texas, offer new craft whiskies and are big advocates of more ‘hoppy’ products. Texas’ market leader is Balcones, considered one of the world’s greatest micro-whiskey brands who are responsible for the popular True Blue whiskey.

Scotland No article about whisky would be complete without a mention of Scotland. The country’s biggest export, it is predicted the nation the country has four casks of whisky for every one of their five million citizens. Most famous for their scotch whisky that is required to be made in relation with a specific law, this includes malt and grain versions of the beverage and brands such as Johnnie Walker, Ballantine’s and William Peel

Japan One nation that you may not associate with whisky, but actually have an illustrious past with the drink, is Japan. It was in the 1800s that they first began producing the drink, but commercial production didn’t get underway until 1924. In recent years they have ramped up their whisky production, creating products based on the Scotch whisky model, but they have also created their own unique offerings. This includes malt whiskies such as Suntory and Nikka which have won international awards for their quality. The Japanese market continues to grow and is sure to flourish long into the future.

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Food and Drink



Whether it’s a decadent Burgundy or a New World blockbuster, Shawbury Wine import exclusively from boutique often family run wineries, providing a drinking experience that is truly like no other.

A family-run business since 2000, Shawbury Wine imports wines from over 15 countries worldwide including South Africa, Argentina and Spain to name but a few. The business has a simple yet dedicated ethos and is committed to giving people the opportunity to sample fine wines of superb quality and unique character. Richard Lambourne their Fine Wine Consultant has a simple belief that he expresses: “Let your taste buds decide. It’s important that my customers are able to sample a wide selection of products and we regularly host exclusive tasting events.” You can find a Shawbury Wine ambassador on hand to lend their expertise and guidance on wine pairings at over 100 lifestyle exhibitions, events and country fairs throughout the year. By getting involved with these tasting events, wine lovers are able to discover something beyond the lottery of mass produced supermarket products.

For more information on Shawbury Wine visit or please contact Richard at

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The Home Collection

A MODERN GUIDE TO GROWING YOUR OWN VEG It may be a pastime associated with bygone eras, but you don’t need to be a character from 70s sitcom The Good Life to grow your own fruit and vegetables.


Fuelled by the growing population of vegans in the UK and increasing consumer awareness of the unfortunate side effects of importing international food, many are beginning to literally sow and reap the advantages that come from ‘growing your own’.

The below guide highlights why this vintage pastime is having a renaissance of sorts along with easy tips on how to start your own allotment and a seasonal calendar of harvest: Wising up: why you should grow your own veg at home So, what are the benefits of growing your own fresh produce? Although requiring a little more effort, growing your own fruit and vegetables has a variety of fantastic benefits. 1) Fresh and nutritious By the time produce has travelled thousands of miles via land or sea, items are often lacking much of their original nutritional value, with some losing up to 70% of their vitamins and minerals by the time they reach the shop floor! For many who eat veg to top up on their daily dose of micronutrients, this means that much of what is consumed is effectively useless and may even lead to reduced nutrition. 2) Fantastic for the environment Perhaps the biggest benefit to growing your own food is its impact on the environment. Agriculture is the second largest pollutant after fossil fuels, so cutting down on the need for international farming and pesticides helps to contribute to the reduction of this issue. Furthermore, the thousands of airmiles attributed to every freight plane carrying produce soon racks up some pretty worrying air pollution levels, not to mention the abundance of plastic packaging on every item.

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3) A chance to try something new Ultimately, having access to more fruit and vegetables offers the option to try new health crazes such as ‘Meat free Monday’ or ‘Veganuary’, both of which have been proven to have a host of health benefits. The number of vegans in Great Britain quadrupled between 2014 and 2018. And in 2018 it was predicted that there was 600,000 in the country making up 1.16% of the population. And for good reason, the lifestyle has been linked to a longer lifespan and a reduced chance of cancer and heart disease. A beginner’s guide to growing your own fruit and vegetables successfully Fancy growing your own spuds or even getting adventurous with sweetcorn, pak choi or yellow courgettes? The following guide contains everything you need to get started, minus the seeds!

1) Make a list Firstly, begin by writing down the fruits and vegetables that you love to eat. If space is at a premium, cross out anything that can be grown in Britain or has a long store cupboard life. Dwarf and bush varieties are also worth considering if you want to maximise on square footage. 2) Start in spring Although produce is subject to a seasonal calendar, a good rule of thumb is to start in spring. The mild temperatures make sowing a more pleasant experience whilst it can help to avoid a glut or dearth on many crops. Make sure to pay attention to the below calendar though as crops are subject to differing time frames. 3) Draw up an allotment layout In order to utilise the space you have, drawing up a layout for crops is a useful activity. For example, spinach and salad leaves can be sown in short 1m rows every four to six weeks whilst crops such as potatoes have further reaching roots and grown under earth so need far more space. 4)Make life easier by planting crops with similar tending needs As well as checking what grows best in your variety of soil, it is a good idea to plant fruit and veg that has similar needs regarding sunlight, watering and level of care if you are short on time. This will increase your chance of success as needs can be met more effectively.

Seasonal calendar Check what is in season and when with the below guide. January-March: Winter is a great time to grow all variety of apples and if you are braving the cold in your garden at this time of year some of the other fruit and vegetables that thrive in winter conditions include, oranges, parsnips and rhubarb.

5) Should I buy a propagator


These are invaluable for raising your game but can be bulky. Windowsill propagators are space-savers, and heat mats roll up when not in. While not an essential purchase straight away, the more experienced you become, your need to get one may increase.

As the clocks go forward there is a wide range of growing opportunities. Grapefruit, lettuce, new potatoes and watercress are all perfect for growing when spring arrives. May-July: We can never be quite sure what kind of weather Britain will offer us in the summer but under the right circumstances the likes of blackcurrants, carrots, courgette, radicchio and gooseberries will grow. July-September: Apricots, aubergines, broadbeans, figs, garlic and strawberries are among the delicacies that are perfect to grow at this time of year. September-December: It’s no surprise that as Christmas approaches the ever divisive Brussel sprouts are in season. Joining them include fruit and vegetables such as dates, kale, pumpkins swede and turnips.

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The Home Collection

SIMPLY SOPHISTICATED Poggenpohl has always been a pioneer. For over 125 years, their team has been developing, designing and producing luxury kitchens in their factory in Herford. People and their needs, social transformation and foresight into emerging trends are Poggenpohl’s core values, bringing their exceptionally high standard to customers all over the world.


The consequence for Poggenpohl: today a kitchen is simply what a kitchen should provide for people. Workshop or workplace, adventure area or part-time office, separated or as the heart of the dwelling – because a kitchen makes the retreat into the self just as possible as the encounter with family or friends. Sometimes it is dominant and noble, while at times it retreats and integrates quietly into the events of living.

Studio Manager, David Dilaj comments: “As a team we have a wealth of knowledge and experience in providing the best design solution to transfer your kitchen into a sleek, modern and practical room. Being located in the iconic Fort Dunlop it is a perfect destination for anyone in the West Midlands who wants to upgrade their existing kitchen or design a brand new one. The highlight of our displays is our P’7350’.”

Poggenpohl creates options for every lifestyle and person, utilising their years of experience to ensure the highest level of quality. Poggenpohl Birmingham, is situated in the prestigious Fort Dunlop interior design destination in the heart of Birmingham. The studio is one of the largest in the UK, showcasing five full kitchen displays; +MODO which features glass-fronted drawers and open shelves that can be used to showcase china, glassware and serving dishes. The minimalist +SEGMENTO with handleless cupboards and worktops so thin they appear to float above the units beneath. And, the award-winning P’7350, designed in collaboration with Studio F.A. Porsche, which emphasises both the horizontal and vertical lines of the kitchens architecture. These are just some of the displays this studio has to offer.

Poggenpohl Birmingham Unit 10 Fort Dunlop, Fort Parkway, B24 9FD

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There’s space here for everything and anything. To have ideas and reject them. +MODO Poggenpohl Birmingham ⋅ Unit 10 Fort Dunlop ⋅ Birmingham ⋅ Fort Parkway ⋅ B24 9FD 0121 747 3301 ⋅ ⋅

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The Home Collection

Visit our website to see more...


1. Missoni Home at Vitim zig-zag Stripe Cushion 60x60cm £356

2. Oliver Bonas at Velvet Love Tub in Terracotta £625

3. Oliver Bonas at Flora Scalloped Mustard Yellow Velvet Armchair

4. Soho Home at Monroe velvet cushion 27cm x 60cm

5. Cuckooland at Reclaimed Taxi Bench & Lounge Chair




When decorating it is tempting to opt for neutral shades. Whilst this is undoubtedly a fail safe option, plumping for richer jewel tones such as burnt orange can help to create a warm and welcoming atmosphere in even the vastest of spaces. This needn’t entail painting the walls a dramatic shade though, instead choose plush accessories to add a hint of polish to any abode. Vintage inspired scalloped armchairs provide the perfect backdrop for such rich colours or why not opt for a statement piece of art to inject a dose of vibrancy?


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7. 8.

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6. Le Creuset at Stoneware Cafetiere

7. Villeroy & Boch at Samarkand Mandarin Porcelain Gifts Pplate 28cm

8. Oliver Bonas at Nomu Orange Decanter

9. Oliver Bonas at Marble & Copper Bar Tools Set

10. Oliver Bonas at Luxe Round Bamboo Drinks Trolley






11. Vivo at Stoneware Coffee Cup Set of Two


£22.50 12. Oliver Bonas at Gal Unstained Mango Wood Chest of Drawers £465 13. Oliver Bonas at Woven Raffia Bamboo Table Lamp

12. 13. 15.

£68 14. Oliver Bonas at Lucky Cat Violet Leaf & Vanilla Scented Candle £22 15. Oliver Bonas at Self Love Club Wall Art A3 £69

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The Home Collection


Multi-media artist Alexander Hall and his Haut de Gamme brand are turning heads on the international art scene. We hear his story


Its name translates as “up-market” or “high-end” … so what better symbol for fast-emerging art brand Haut de Gamme than a bottle of expensive champagne? Bottles of bubbly, splashed and dripping with paint, are among the signature works of Haut de Gamme artist Alexander Hall. His subjects also include polo ponies, cars and packs of Marlboro cigarettes. Hall went large on the champagne theme with his most celebrated work to date: a commission from InterContinental Hotels Group to mark its 200th hotel acquisition. The installation, 200 individually painted bottles, has boosted international interest in Haut de Gamme. But why the branding? Why not plain Alexander Hall?

more paintings after being impressed with his first piece of work. “I was summoned to his office. He pointed to a wall and asked what I could do with it and I came up with an idea,” he said. Following that, the businessman told Hall that he had 23 other walls in offices around the world and they all needed his artwork. “That was the moment the game changed,” said Hall, 29. “It introduced me to an array of art collectors who love my work and I created work for charity events, like my first ever champagne bottle painting.” Clients include F1 driver Daniel Ricciardo and Aston Martin, for whom he is currently working on a painting. It is a particular joy for him as it reflects his lifelong passion for cars and motor sport. Currently single and working from his west London studio mews, he rents larger studio space for big projects like the InterContinental installation. The 200 empty bottles were arrayed on the floor for painting, each with a board containing reference information on hotel locations. But what happened to all that champagne? “No comment!” Hall adds: “I’ve been lucky, but if you want the good things in life you have to get up early. I feel I’m just getting started, and there is so much more I need to do.”

For more about Alexander Hall, visit

“I wanted something that summed up everything I do, not just art but also developing concepts,” Hall says. “Whatever I do, it’s under that banner.” His creative instinct emerged in childhood. “It was more than just crayons. Hammer and screwdriver, too,” he recalls. “At six I was at a lathe making bowls out of tree trunks. I’d design and build a go-kart or do some painting.” Hall, who lives in London, says his “hard-working” parents taught him “to paint the back of the cabinet, not just the front … to put your best into everything you do.” There were hard lessons. When just 16, he sold a painting for £950. Years later, it was sold on … for £35,000. A blow? “I wasn’t doing well at the time, but it gave me confidence in my own ability. It taught me that I had to believe in myself, so I’m grateful for the experience.” Hall’s big break came from entrepreneur Peter Jones, of Dragons’ Den fame, who commissioned him to produce

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© Adrian Weinbrecht

© Adrian Weinbrecht © Adrian Weinbrecht

© Adrian Weinbrecht

© Adrian Weinbrecht


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The Home Collection

THE SMART TECHNOLOGY YOU NEED TO HAVE IN YOUR HOME Virtual assistants that take the strain out of daily life, robo vacuum cleaners and self-tying shoes (no we’re not joking) are all examples of smart technology that you can now get for your home in 2019. Depending on your definition, smart technology is nothing new. When the first engine-powered vacuum cleaner was released in 1901 it was considered to be ‘smart’ as it instantly made life more convenient. As time progressed and more household appliances (such as washing machines, tumble dryers, irons etc) were invented people’s homes became increasingly used to adopting different gadgets that took the burden out of the day-to-day. The introduction of the internet has increased the level of smart tech we now have in our homes, and while making our day-to-day lives easier is still a big draw, consumers can purchase products that enhance a number of other areas.


For the day-to-day One of the most popular technologies to have emerged in recent years is the virtual assistant. And, if you have heard the neighbours frantically shouting “Alexa!” then you have Amazon to thank for that. Alexa was launched by the technology giants in 2014 and was one of the first virtual assistants of its kind. Alexa has since been adopted by more than 100 million families who are all enjoying her ability to answer the most random of questions, order shopping online and even read the latest football scores. Noticing how quickly Alexa took off, other heavyweights in the technology industry – Google, Apple and Samsung – have all followed suit releasing their own versions, each one competing to do more than the other.

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For music lovers Known as the ultimate home sound system, Sonos uses the latest in wireless and voice technology, giving users the chance to play different music, podcasts, movies and much more in every room of the house. Using a mobile app, users can then control what each room is listening to with their fingertips catering to everyone’s individual tastes. Sonos also incorporates Alexa so users are able to change tracks and give the system instructions using only their voice.

For your pets

For fun A trend that is increasing in popularity in the world of smart tech is technology that seamlessly blends into your home’s décor. And, it’s Samsung who are paving the way with their ingenious Smart TV, The Frame. The Frame combines technology and art as when it’s switched off, the screen passes for a stunning piece of artwork. Completely customisable, homeowners only have to download their chosen theme from the online store and watch as art turns into their favourite box set. Speakers haven’t been left out of this trend either as they too can be transformed into artistic name sculptures.

For security Everyone wants to sleep easy knowing their home and family is safe, and smart tech can help you sleep sounder than ever. More than a standard CCTV, smart security cameras means no matter where you are in the world you can tune in and see what’s going on back at home. A number of companies have manufactured their own smart home systems, allowing users to view their home on their smartphones, activate their burglar alarms and speak out of speakers to warn off any intruders.

Furry friends aren’t left out either when it comes to smart tech in the home. Some might say it’s excessive, but Doggy Day Care is actually loved by many owners, and dogs. The innovative device can be placed anywhere in the home and features a camera which means owners can keep an eye on their pooch via an app while they’re out and about. And, there’s an extra function which dispenses tasty treats at the touch of a button.

For your convenience Let’s face it, anything that makes the busy nature of modern life quicker and easier is going to be a hit. Now, even simple tasks like switching on the lights or turning on the heating are becoming a thing of the past as they too can be controlled through technology – and it can be done without even having to get off the sofa. There are a variety of products on the market that can control these utilities including the Nest Thermostat. The device controls the home from a phone and is compatible with other virtual assistants such as Alexa.

Want to know who’s at your front door? A video doorbell gives you the chance to check who is visiting before you open the door. So, ignoring the door-to-door salespeople you used to hide from becomes much easier.

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The Home Collection

WAGNER PAINT SPRAYERS THE UNSTOPPABLE WAY TO PAINT! With the summer season upon us, many a homeowner’s thoughts turn to improvements and ways to freshen up interiors. Painting is a huge part of this but can soon become a long-winded task often yielding patchy results and the alternative of hiring a decorator is a costly prospect.


With Wagner’s range of paint spraying tools this needn’t be the case. Wagner offers solutions to make painting quick and easy for even the most complex of projects, while delivering professional looking results every time. From spraying perfectly neat edges to transforming reclaimed furniture, these high efficiency tools can be used by any DIY novice and are ten times faster than a conventional brush as well as offering more power to avoid over spray. The guns are also designed to handle all manner of paint consistencies from thick oil-based to chalk like substances, meaning there is no need to wonder if a particular shade will be compatible with the tool. Wagner also offer SMART rollers for those who prefer this method of painting. A simple squeeze of the ratchet power trigger directly feeds paint to the paint roller cover, eliminating the need for messy paint trays for refills. The SMART roller is perfect for medium-sized projects, and the extended handle reaches 8’ ceilings with ease. As a testimony to its quality, the range is endorsed by celebrity TV DIY expert Craig Phillips. As a leading figure in the home improvement industry, Phillips is well versed in what makes a great tool for the everyday decorator: “With Wagner it has never been easier for everyone to improve their homes. In just a couple of hours your living

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room can be transformed without having to slog it out over an entire weekend like you would with brushes”. There has never been a better time to make those muchneeded freshen ups. Perfect for professionals! With the number of skilled tradesmen in decline, professions such as decorating are much sought after and many of these individuals are renowned for their seamless attention to detail and reputation. However, when business is thriving why turn away clients when stretched, if an exceptional job can be delivered in half the time with the right tools? Wagner’s range of paint spraying and roller tools make the perfect edition to any professional kit, allowing usual immaculate standards to be maintained in a fraction of the time. In particular, the High Efficiency Airless Collection is the ideal choice for trade professionals as it delivers up to 55% less overspray than standard airless sprayers and improves control for a more consistent finish. Also considerably neater, Wagner’s spray guns avoid the need for mess and post clean-up of brushes that wastes valuable time. They are also compatible with all manner of paints ensuring that a perfect execution can be delivered every time, no matter the scale or manner of the project.

In just a couple of hours your living room can be transformed without having to slog it out over an entire weekend like you would with brushes”. - Craig Phillips, Wagner ambassador

If surface preparation is needed, an on-demand steamer is also available for the removal of barriers such as old wallpaper and anaglypta. So, when a client leaves traces of prior décor behind, this no longer needs to be a source of dread or excessive time spent scraping it off. Whether tackling interiors or industrial metal projects, Wagner has made it easier than ever to render time and cost efficient results that spare the mess, excess paint and effort that is usually associated with such enterprises. Wagner revives the Sydney Harbour Bridge As a choice to trust, their equipment is used by some of the world’s leading contractors on a variety of projects. Wagner contractor paint sprayers were used for renovations on the Sydney Harbour Bridge, proving that the equipment can tackle even the largest of projects. The Wagner home decorating range is available from B&Q, Screwfix, Toolstation, Amazon, Homebase and Wickes.

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Unit 16, The Mailbox Wharfside Street, Birmingham, B1 1RD | 0121 389 3980



With more than 9,000 mortgage brokers in the UK, cutting through a crowded marketplace to find clear and personalised advice can be another hoop you don’t want to jump through. Don’t disregard this to be just another advert for just another mortgage broker though, because SJ Financial Solutions is different. As well as services for first time buyers, buy-to-lets and remortgages one would expect to find, it is the firm’s bespoke advice for high net worth individuals, as well as their paper-less operations that sees them tower over the other 8,999. SJ Financial Solutions is based in Harborne, just a few miles outside of Birmingham’s vibrant city centre. The firm’s central location puts them in close proximity to hospitals and universities which sees them regularly work to secure mortgages for high income professionals, something that despite common conception poses a challenge. Stuart Mosley, Founder of SJ Financial Solutions said: “Often, high street lenders will turn away high net worth individuals on the basis that they are often self-employed or have income generated by various means. My team breaks those barriers down.” He added: “We understand that high street lenders are not always the most suitable solution for our high net worth clients. That’s why we choose to also work with a number of private banks, as well as the likes of the exclusive HSBC Premier and Barclays Wealth, to ensure to best mortgage plan for larger scale sums.

high-income jobs as well as being able to properly navigate the differing work patterns and hours that so often come with locum or shift-style work associated with the medical profession or self employed.” Stuart established SJ Financial Solutions in June 2005 following a career with industry giants Halifax and Santander. He noticed a significant gap in the industry for a bespoke broker that makes the search for a mortgage a smooth process, and not one filled with dread. Over the years he has done that and more with his personal but powerful team of advisors able to expertly manage all elements of a high net worth individuals’ mortgage application including clear-cut life insurance advice and protection. Excellence for all clientele is at the centre of the firm and their recent recognitions reflect that with Stuart proudly named as one of VouchedFor’s ‘Top Advisor for 2019’ in February this year. The firm was also mystery shopped by the Financial Advisor Magazine which is part of the renowned Financial Times where they came out as the top recommended broker in Birmingham. Why spend hours scouring the high street lenders, when SJ Financial Solutions can put you on the quickest path to mortgage success? Book your tailored consultation with the SJ Financial Solutions Team today.

“All of this is to the benefit of the individual. The elite lenders we use are far more in tune with the pressures of


T: 0121 448 0161

A: 185-187 High St Birmingham, West Midlands B17 9QG E: // 111

Business Matters



Home Grown is an exclusive and carefully curated members’ club for high-growth entrepreneurs and business leaders from all walks of life. Situated in the heart of Marylebone, this stylish club is the first of its kind, combining a community of like-minded individuals under one roof.

Located across four elegant Grade II-listed Georgian townhouses on Great Cumberland Place, Home Grown exudes quality, sophistication and style.

Alongside this, there are executive business lounges, bars, meeting areas and private dining rooms, as well as events spaces.

As the newest offering from world-renowned private member’s club Home House, excellent service and the utmost attention to detail are always ensured.

Tucked discreetly in the basement are two stylish presentation rooms that fuse contemporary design and vibrant décor. With unique table tennis boardroom tables and high specification video conferencing facilities, they provide just one example of the inspired spaces that comprise the club .

Membership enables established business owners to connect with peers who foster similar ideologies, offering respite from a busy corporate lifestyle. As one of the most contemporary and forward thinking members’ clubs in London, Home Grown presents itself as the antithesis to the traditional investment culture of many other private associations. Instead, the focus centres around bringing the sharpest minds together to connect and interact in an inspiring environment: a place for those who simply understand one another’s philosophy . This exclusive yet informal ethos is re-iterated clearly by CEO Andrew Richardson: “Members’ clubs either tend to be socially-orientated or have a work-space nature. Home Grown is a unique concept, offering the tools, events and opportunities that enables businesses to grow in a luxurious environment that one expects from an exclusive members’ club”. Featuring a plethora of stunning spaces, designed by the renowned Russell Sage Studios, the venue includes a brasserie-style restaurant, fitness suite and study café.

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There are also 35 beautifully designed bedrooms, offering unrivalled access to the city. Ranging from stylish and bijou

to decadent and plush, there’s a mix of sizes and styles to suit all needs. Think Savoir beds, Noble Isle toiletries, Egyptian cotton sheets and decadent en-suites.

There is also the option for members to host private events, where the proven in-house team will deliver the highest standards of service, food and hospitality.

A typical membership package includes a programme of events, networking sessions and knowledge-exchanges to support growth and foster genuine connection.

Home Grown is currently accepting applications for founder members, where packages as unique as the individual will be created. Successful candidates, subject to board approval, will then be offered a variety of options to best suit timings and needs.

Whether attending a health concierge as an antidote to a busy entrepreneurial lifestyle or dropping in on a social evening to meet and greet both new and old faces, the club’s social schedule is rich and varied. Recently, the venue has hosted the likes of Kelly Hoppen MBE and Peter Roberts, CEO of Pure Gym; allowing the brightest minds in British business to offer their expertise in a luxurious yet informal setting that is more akin to an intimate dinner with friends.

For more information and membership enquires please visit

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Business Matters



In this digital age, online marketing has become more of a necessity than an option.

As brands gear up to fight for the top spots in increasingly competitive markets, having a strong digital presence is absolutely vital to business success. The world is more digitalised than ever before - recent studies have shown that on average we now spend a total of 24 hours a week using electronic devices. Whether it be a laptop, smartphone, or tablet, the growth of the internet and developments in technology has caused marketers to exploit this trend and target device activity to reach new customers and generate more leads for their business. By the end of this year, the total UK digital ad spend is predicted to reach a staggering £20.8bn and this doesn’t include the opportunities presented by other digital channels. Traditional marketing simply isn’t enough anymore. Businesses who neglect the power of digital advertising are being left eating the dust of those embracing the future and the ecommerce giants. If you’re a business owner and are unsure whether this applies to you, here’s a breakdown of why your business needs to invest in digital marketing: Power Digital marketing is now the most powerful marketing channel, so if you’re looking to stand out amongst your competition, riding the digital wave will certainly help you make the biggest splash. It’s no surprise that companies are investing so much in digital, as with the right strategy in place, the possibilities for brand growth are endless.

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Cost Efficiency As far as costs go, the average ad spend is lower for digital than any other form of marketing. What’s more, the return on investment is higher - hooray! For small to medium-sized businesses who do not always have the budget to compete with larger brands for ad space on big channels such as TV, radio and print, digital marketing makes the most sense. In some cases, digital platforms can actually generate more coverage than TV or radio - and it’s a lot cheaper too! Measurability Whilst it’s difficult to measure the success of an offline marketing campaign, virtually all digital marketing activity can be tracked and monitored. This means campaigns can be thoroughly analysed and adapted to identify the most effective tactics and ultimately produce the best possible results. By using just one of many analytics tools, you can monitor your activities in real time and access vast amounts of data that can inform future strategic decisions. Niche Targeting A huge benefit of using digital marketing is its ability to target specific audiences. Unlike traditional means, digital allows you to connect to your specific target audience and focus all your efforts in the right places. By promoting your content in front of the right people, you are far more likely to generate leads and sales, whilst at the same time, using your money and resources effectively.


Adaptability The nature of digital marketing allows you to experiment with different methods and techniques until you find the perfect one for your business. Unlike press or TV ads, digital marketing campaigns can be adapted throughout, so you can fine tune your strategy as you go. If for example, you see that SEO (search engine optimisation) is driving more traffic to your site than email marketing, you may wish to focus more of your site on SEO and switch up your strategy going forward. Global Reach Thanks to social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, the reach for digital content is limitless. By harnessing the power of social media and online influencers you can seriously amplify your promotions and messaging to raise brand awareness at scale. Moreover, channels such as social media encourages brands to connect and engage with target audiences, helping to build trust and loyalty.

Ask the experts If you’re interested in digital marketing and would like to know what impact it could have on your business, get in touch with the digital experts at Champions Digital. 08453 31 30 31

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Business Matters

ARE INFLUENCERS SAVING THE HIGH STREET? As major High Street stores continue to disappear from towns and cities across the country, we ask if social media and its plethora of influencers could be their saviour.


The Beginning of the End When Woolworths closed its doors for the final time in 2008, it signified a shift in the landscape of the British High Street. At the time, e-commerce was beginning to gain precedence alongside social media platforms and the two were dealing devastating blows to bricks and mortar retail. This overtaking manoeuvre was seemingly signified when in 2018 Amazon surpassed Walmart as the world’s most valuable retailer and has set a precedent for the industry globally ever since. Upon first examination, it seemed as if all of these stores were closing due to an unfortunate turn in the retail landscape and this is true in part. However, certain names appeared to be bucking the trend and flourishing and all for one reason. Although not immediately obvious in store, the answer seems to lie with their online activity and in particular, social media influencers. Granted, most stores now have a social media presence of some variety but working with influencers is not something that has been adopted by all. Simply put, thriving brands know that they need influential figures to attract customers and raise brand awareness. Today, that someone is an influencer. Relatable yet aspirational, stylish yet candid, influencers have the ability to engage and persuade millions like no other social figure.

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Why Influencers Could Be the Saviour of Traditional Retail In the last few years we have seen the emergence of major fashion brands such as Pretty Little Thing and Boohoo, all which have seen huge growth from working with influencers. From day one they have heavily invested in influencer marketing and with Boohoo’s profits soaring a massive 97% to £579.8 million last year 2018, it has more than paid off. Whilst some shoppers are undoubtedly purchasing from online sites because of convenience, a great number have been inspired by posts they have seen online and can easily order the same product all in one place. Having worked with influencers for over a decade, Senior Manager of agency, Influencer Champions Amelia Neate believes that influencers could help to boost local businesses: “There is no rule saying that High Street brand’s or even local businesses can’t work with an influencer,” she said The modern consumer isn’t anti-High Street, they just need a reason to visit and influencers can give exactly this them this. Savvy High Street brands have already tapped into this initiative.” Primark is the perfect example. They have ignored the pressures of venturing into the world of e-commerce but that doesn’t mean a failure to utilise social media influencers and their benefits. The brand has established social media channels alongside gifting key influencers the latest seasonal pieces, curated to resonate with their respective audiences. They also offer social stars the chance to come in store to film sponsored videos. On top of this, Primark even launched a fitness collection collaboration with health influencer Alice Liveing aka Clean Eating Alice to offer their consumers a slice of her style at a budget price but only available in store. The collection was instantly sold out. And they aren’t the only ones tapping into this either. Warehouse have collaborated with the likes of fashion blogger Pandora Sykes, H&M do regular style edits with influencers such as Lissy Voddy and even M&S have began to feature an ‘as seen on’ influencer section and invite them to shows . Whether it’s inviting influencers into the store, collaborating through content or sharing a live video, there many in which High-Street businesses can take advantage of this marketing tool and really grow their business. Are you interested in working with an influencer? Speak to the specialists at Influencer Champions and see how you can form a successful partnership with the industry’s leading social media influencers.

For more information please contact Influencer Champions on 0203 9580 427, email or visit the website at

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The Maserati of SUVs


Fuel economy and CO2 results for the Maserati Levante MY19 range in mpg (l/100km) combined: 20.7 (13.6) to 30.0 (9.4). *CO2 emissions: 282 - 207 g/km. Figures shown are for comparability purposes; only compare fuel consumption and CO2 figures with other cars tested to the same technical procedures. These figures may not reflect real life driving results, which will depend upon a number of factors including the accessories fitted (post-registration), variations in weather, driving styles and vehicle load. *There is a new test used for fuel consumption and CO2 figures. The CO2 figures shown however, are based on the outgoing test cycle and will be used to calculate vehicle tax on first registration.

Property investment, simplified Will your financial portfolio fund the lifestyle you desire in your retirement?

At Prosperity, we strongly believe property should form part of any retirement plan. That’s why for the past ten years, we’ve been developing and perfecting a buyto-let product that’s now totally unique to the property investment market. Headquartered in Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter, the Prosperity group of companies develop and sell buy-to-let apartments to a global investor audience, offering clients affordable access to UK property as an income producing tool direct from the developer. Our success in delivering a bespoke, personal service comes in our ability to offer a solution at every stage of the process, in the shape of a fully managed investment journey. From choosing the most appropriate unit, through to purchasing, mortgage facilitation and onto long term rental and lettings management, Prosperity take care of it all. Your input can be as much or as little as you’d like – one of the reasons why 56% of our clients purchase another property within two years of their first. Suitable for first time investors to established professional landlords, our innovative, high-yielding products are adaptable and designed to both complement and strengthen any existing investment portfolio. Delivering solid, secure buy-to-let investments from as little at £1000 per month, our payment plans include no lump sum options, as well as mortgage free solutions to buying and owning UK property.

One BHM Birmingham City Centre Guide Price £164,995 - £292,995 Predicted yield 6%

“Today’s investors are far savvier” says Marc Pearce, Head of Sales & Marketing from Prosperity Wealth. “Stand-alone financial products just don’t fulfil long term financial requirements nowadays. People are living longer and have far greater expectations of their future income in retirement. Diversification is key, in supporting a more long-term financial goal.” With a current portfolio of 34 new-build and conversion projects with a GDV of over £400 million, Prosperity has carefully developed its reputation for bringing profitable pre-built and off-plan property investments to market, with an emphasis on key locations where yield and rental demand is high. Reserve property off-plan Prosperity build high-grade residential developments in prime UK locations. Payment options Choose from range of payment plans designed to suit our clients’ financial circumstances. Financing Our in-house mortgage broker Verve, provides residential investment mortgage solutions to a global investor base. Sales & Lettings Management Lamont Estates offers owners a full lettings and management solution.

For further information and a detailed overview of the investment opportunities available, visit or call 0121 237 4610

Business Matters

State-of-the-art digital and media centre, under construction in 2019.



Wherever you want to take your brand, the East Midlands’ leading full-service brand agency, Champions (UK) plc, does things differently. They find a better way to deliver the results you seek.

As an 80-strong, family-run agency, they know it’s all about relationships and they understand the importance of your long-term objectives.

To do that they’ve developed a unique architecture. They don’t limit themselves, or what they deliver on your behalf, to a niche.

And they know that success has to be on your terms. However, you weigh that up, whatever your chosen metric, that’s where their focus lies.

Instead, they give you access to ten fields of expertise, all working together in perfect harmony – The Perfect 10.

They get to know you, your brand and your precise aims to create and roll out bespoke strategies that take you where you want to go.

Rather than engage several agencies, each with a different interpretation of your brief and each with its own margin, you get joined-up thinking and just one chest to poke. With a full spectrum of expertise at Champions’ disposal, you benefit from the services you need – simple as that.

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End User Focus

Growing Capabilities

Key to delivering in this nuanced way is their ability to understand a wide range of audiences. That and their expertise in devising and delivering campaigns and strategies focused on the end user.

Since they were first established in 2003, Champions has looked to the long-term. Whether that’s building enduring client relationships or reinvesting in the agency team and infrastructure, there’s always an eye on the future.

With a unique structure of 10 in-house departments, they have the architecture and the knowledge to create and execute complex and consistent cross-channel campaigns that target the right audiences.

They use the same far-sighted vision that has kept dozens of clients loyal for over a decade to build on their expertise and technical capabilities - and expand the range of services they deliver.

Rather than focusing on individual business sectors, they have always thought first about the end user.

Look at the digital space. It may have been just two short years since they doubled the footprint of their headquarters on the Leicestershire/Nottinghamshire border but they’re not content to stand still. Instead, they recently celebrated the granting of planning permission on a project that will transform an on-site barn into a state-of-the-art digital and media centre.

They have developed their expertise along those lines, tailoring both the messaging and the platforms they use to reach out in the most effective way. So, they treat each campaign on its own merits and use the most suitable range of promotional tools. Plotting a Course From the very first touchpoint, the moment your potential customers first encounter your brand, they embark on a journey. Champions (UK) plc owns that journey. They turn an initial awareness of who you are and what you do into a positive decision to purchase your products or services. To stimulate that decision, they take your target audience through a series of further touchpoints, each of which builds understanding, confidence and trust. The team creates consistent and clear messages that reinforce the values you represent and the benefits you deliver. They increase the frequency and broaden the range of those touchpoints, raising the probability of your customers encountering them.

With the ground scheduled to be broken in the middle of 2018, they’re equipping themselves to help yet more client brands take full advantage of the ongoing digital revolution. Champions (UK) plc has already developed a broad palette of capabilities. With a team of over 90 set to push past the 100 mark, their offering will only become even more comprehensive. So, whatever your brand’s needs, they’re the right people for the job. For more information, call Grace Golden on 08453 31 30 31 or email /+Championsukplcagency



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Business Matters



An incentive like no other… Motivate your team today by putting them in the seat of some of the world’s hottest supercars. Forget about your traditional employee rewards and your standard lunches out that you usually pass off as team building. Let Everyman Racing help you take it up a gear…

driving experiences and an impressive fleet of more than 200 supercars at a range of locations, including the Top Gear track at Dunsfold.

Everyman Racing pride themselves in tailoring and hosting supercar events for corporate clients at venues across the UK. Enhance your company profile or increase your sales and rewards programmes with a bespoke supercar experience.

You and your team can choose from the latest models including Ferraris, Lamborghinis and McLarens. You can also take your pick from some amazing ‘movie cars’ from The Dukes of Hazzard’s General Lee to the awesome Ford Mustang GT500 Eleanor from Gone in 60 Seconds and more. Plus, for those seeking even more thrills you can book an off-road adventure in one of the rally cars.

Treat yourself and your team to an unforgettable, adrenaline-filled experience with Everyman Racing. With more than 38 years’ experience delivering incredible

These incredible cars combined with the passionate team at Everyman Racing will ensure you will get a high quality, memorable experience for your business.

What a truly excellent couple of days at Goodwood.The staff service and food at the hotel could not have been better and the welcome, instruction and setting for the second day was truly superb too. Charlie Turner, Editor in Chief, BBC Top Gear

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Everyman Racing is renowned for its Diamond corporate days with top of the range Supercars such as the Lamborghini Aventador, McLaren 720s, Porsche GT3 RS from its fleet of over 200 vehicles. A Typical Corporate Day 08.00 – Registration and Breakfast at Prestwold Hall 08.30 – Safety and Days Briefing 08.50 – Your day begins as you meet the Team Leader Start what will be an eye watering day with the Supercars, followed by:

Events at Everyman Racing can also include accommodation and conference facilities at the historic Prestwold Hall, just half a mile away from the track. Make your business stand out Everyman Racing don’t just offer team building and rewards, they offer a whole range of services that will make your business stand out: • Employee rewards • Team building events • Staff incentive days

- Drift Experience

• Client hosting

- 4 x 4 Experience

• Conferences and meetings

- Rally Experience

• Venue hire

- American Movie Car Experiences

• Product launches

Also available: Race Buggies, Classic Cars, Segway, Helicopters, Ariel Atom, Supercar Hot-laps, High Performance Saloon Hot-laps.

• Manufacturer events

Lunch at the beautiful Prestwold Hall All of the above can be tailored to your guests needs and what you, as the client, requires from Europe’s largest provider of Supercar Experiences. Corporate Days are available from 10 to 50 guests’. Driving time is always the same, whether you are a private individual or part of an exclusive corporate booking. Every full-day event includes breakfast, a waitress-served lunch and a fine afternoon tea. You’ll find complimentary drinks and light bites in our comfortable trackside building.

Call Everyman Racing today on 01509 892260 to discuss your bespoke driving experience day or visit

The Everyman team were friendly, professional and, most of all, keen to share their passion for the cars with everyone. I can see why it’s the best driving experience provider in the country. Jenny Cross, Director of Cross Productions

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We are excited to announce Qdos has now re-branded as Quest. The business has won regular awards for outstanding services and was recognised in recent years as one of the fastest growing businesses in the UK and also won The Queen’s Award for Enterprise in the Innovation category. With a modern and fresh identity, Quest will continue to provide mission critical human resources, health and safety and people management services to a diverse range of businesses, trade bodies and membership organisations across the UK.

For more information visit or call for a FREE HR/HS consultation

QuestOffice QuestOffice is a revolutionary new HR management software platform where you will find a complete range of tools to help support your company’s HR & health and safety requirements. HR & health and safety is made simple for you with our innovative tools enabling you to focus on other things. Employee Management System The must have Employee Management tool to manage employee sickness, holidays and employee records including personal information, performance, training and more. Document Library Covering HR, health and safety and legal with access to hundreds of documents, templates, forms, guides, policies and procedures. AdminLite Automatically populate and build documents with employee data, placing them in your employee’s account area within your Employee Management System. AskQ Online access to HR & health and safety advice from our expert consultants. Save all your advice and access advice archives for your future reference. Audits Easy access to HR & health and safety audits, health checks and feedback reports showing areas of risk or opportunity.

01455 852028 •

Business Matters



With more than 30 specialist engineering divisions selfdelivering services to clients across a wide range of sectors from its Birmingham headquarters, the adi Group has, since it was set up by Alan Lusty in 1990, always taken a comprehensive approach to devising and delivering robust client solutions. And, in what has so far been an exciting year for the firm, it has recently added a brand new engineering facility to an extensive offering of 12 regional facilities across the UK and the Republic of Ireland. Located in Rushden, Northamptonshire, the 16,000 sq.ft. site marks a significant investment for the adi Group which will allow it to be more responsive to regional clients while at the same time broadening its geographical footprint and creating up to 100 skilled jobs in the next 18 months. Inspired by Formula 1’s ‘right first time’ working ethos, adi counts many of the world’s best loved brands among its loyal clients and brought in 1995 British Grand Prix winner and Sky Sports analyst, Johnny Herbert, to cut the ribbon on the new facility at a special event on Thursday 2 May. He said: “This is a fantastic facility on the doorstep of many of adi Group’s key current and future clients. It enables the adi Group to serve those clients even more efficiently, responding quickly in tune with their evolving needs. “There will be high quality jobs for locals and wonderful training opportunities for what can be a rewarding as well as highly rewarded career. Engineering really isn’t a profession fenced off solely for the benefit of the degree-

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educated. And, looking at this facility and hearing the firm’s plans, it is very well placed to inspire the next generation of skilled engineers.” James Sopwith, Group Strategic Account Director, added: “It’s been a pleasure to show clients the new capabilities we have here. Phase 1 of this development will see up to 100 jobs created in the next year and a half. But the fact we already have 30 staff here and will look to push forward towards 200 employees during Phase 2 in Years 3 and 4, marks an exciting expansion of our geographical capabilities. “More importantly, though, it also comes as great news for local jobs and for our clients in the region – current and future – to the needs of whom we can now rapidly respond.” With ambitious plans to more than double its £80 million turnover to £200 million and employ up to 1,000 members of staff, the firm’s right first time culture ensures it creates and delivers the turnkey solutions that engineer the outcomes – and outputs – clients demand. Seamless self-delivery has helped the adi Group cement its status among some of the world’s most sustainable and engaging employers. EcoVadis, a global organisation enabling companies to measure and demonstrate their CSR performance on a rich, multi-tiered scale, recently awarded adi its Gold Accreditation. Scoring the firm at a huge 73%, EcoVadis rates adi the top 1% of the thousands of companies it assesses in over 110 countries worldwide.

Engineering the Future There is a common misconception that UK manufacturing is in decline but the reality is that the country is suffering from a systemic engineering skills shortage that threatens our ability to produce all we need in the years ahead. But, with a ground-breaking pre-apprenticeship scheme in place, giving 14 - 16 year olds from North Bromsgrove High School hands-on experience of a real-world engineering work environment, and with a commitment to having 5% of its employees as full-time apprentices, adi is serious about redressing the balance. Dedicated to inspiring the next generation of engineers, the two-year pre-apprentice programme enables GCSE students to get to grips with engineering and gives them the hands-on skillsets and confidence they need as they move into employment.

Self-delivering Model Building from the ground up as first a supplier of electrical installation services to industry, Alan Lusty steadily added automation, welding and fabrication service strings to his bow. The firm has since kept to a constant growth

trajectory, enabling it to broaden the portfolio of services it offers clients. Now, with over 30 core specialisms in its locker, the adi Group has a self-delivering model that enables it to serve as a one-stop-shop provider of turnkey engineering solutions to clients in the Automotive, Manufacturing, Aerospace & Defence, Pharmaceutical and Petrochemical sectors. With a client portfolio boasting the likes of Rolls-Royce, 3M, Jaguar Land Rover and BAE Systems to name but a few, adi successfully coordinates teams from its UK bases to work on some of the most challenging and technically complex projects of the present day. A key sector for the business is Food & Beverage manufacturing, having built an enviable list of clients in the sector, including Cadbury, Coca-Cola, Muller, Nestle, Weetabix and McCain, as well as a brand new £22million construction project with Princes Foods. For more information on how adi Group’s selfdelivering model can create engineering solutions and opportunities both large and small for your organisation, call 0121 451 2255 or email

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We insure it. You enjoy it. Our insurance collection is geared to give you the protection you need, to look after the things you care about.

For more details, speak to Danny or Sarah on 02476 418 373 email or visit us at Unit 130, Avenue M, Stoneleigh Park, Stoneleigh, CV8 2LG

@nfum_stoneleigh Agent of The National Farmers Union Mutual Insurance Society Limited.


PIERS LINNEY TO BOOK PIERS LINNEY NOW Contact Serena Murphy at Champions (UK) plc on



European Association of Speakers Bureaux

Social pages sponsored by

networking breakfast Piers Linney and Derek Redmond


#ScaleUp Searcys at The Gherkin, London Wednesday 27th February 2019 As part of an ongoing series of networking events at Searcys at The Gherkin, valued businesses were invited by Champions After Dinner Speakers to hear from esteemed entrepreneur and ex-star of Dragons’ Den Piers Linney. With over 20 years’ of industry experience, which includes a Non-Executive Directorship at British Business Bank, and a comprehensive city and legal background, the businessman gave commentary as part of his #scaleup initiative. This aims to offer no-nonsense, real-world advice to budding and established companies who wish to go further.

Former Dragon, Piers Linney telling the guests how to #scaleup

Guests were also treated to a delicious breakfast whilst listening to keynote speeches on a range of topical issues, including how to successfully expand a strategy or concept and the potential impact of Brexit on British businesses. This was followed by a Q&A session where business owners could gain practical answers to any vital or pressing enquiries. All in attendance came away with fresh insights from one of the most discerning and well-regarded minds in the corporate industry.


Champions (UK) plc’s Amad Tababa with guests Lee Turner and James Stewart-Smith from Hiscox

Networking begins with a picturesque view of London

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Amir Qureshi of Thomas International and guests

David Ford of Gleeds and guests

Janine Edwards Wealth Management Ltd table and Guests Coyote performing

Sophia Hayes of Inspirational Birmingham and Guests

Janine Edwards Wealth Management Ltd table and guests

Sophia Hayes of Inspirational Birmingham and guests

End of Year Ball The Belfry Hotel & Resort Friday 23rd November 2018

The final Champions Club event of the year took place at the prestigious Belfry Hotel & Resort with a fantastic End of Year Ball. The event welcomed a whole host of businesses to the former Ryder Cup venue including Champions (UK) plc, Gleeds Global, Inspirational Birmingham, JLT Speciality, Janine Edwards Wealth Management Ltd Principal Partner Practice of St. James’s Place Wealth Management, Mythe Barn, PMGC, QDOS, Thomas International and Bloc Digital. The evening was hosted by former Olympic athlete, Derek Redmond, who also acted as the night’s auctioneer with Champions Club members able to get their hands on a wide-range of sporting and entertainment memorabilia including stunning holidays and amazing experiences. Guests were also treated to a delicious three course meal before enjoying the evening’s entertainment. This came in the form of Britain’s Got Talent finalists, Richard and Adam, who made a surprise appearance. The pair are well-known for their operatic performances which captured the heart of the nation. The night came to a close with party band, Coyote, who entertained the crowd with a number of popular hits.


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Huda Shamsan, Fatima Al-Ani and Nabila Shamsan

SS19 Show: From Car Park to Catwalk! Mailbox Car Park, Birmingham

Birmingham’s best dressed were out in force at the Harvey Nichols SS19 Fashion Show. More than 350 guests enjoyed an evening of the very latest trends at the event, which was staged in the Mailbox car park. The venue provided a striking backdrop to the most sought-after pieces from the likes of Saint Laurent, Off-White, Fendi, Christian Louboutin, Balmain and Valentino. Trends included nautical, 90s nostalgia, neutrals and glamour. The evening, in partnership with luxury car brand DS Automobiles, sold out in a matter of days and those lucky enough to get a ticket were treated to a Prosecco reception and car park catwalk before the chance to shop in store and enjoy an after-show party in the Harvey Nichols Bar & Brasserie. “It is events like this that confirm us as the region’s fashion leaders,” said Richard Vickery, General Manager of Harvey Nichols Birmingham.

Denise Owen, Dominika Korkova and Shelley Brumpton

“We opted for the unorthodox venue because we think it summed up exactly what we are about – we continue to push the boundaries, whether that’s introducing our customers to the very latest fashion talent or the cutting edge design of our store. “We were delighted to work so closely with DS Automobiles to make the evening such a success; as a brand that is recognised around the world for the sleek sophistication of its premium car range it was the most fitting partner.” Hair on the night was styled by the in-store James Bushell team, makeup was by Marc Jacobs Beauty and nails were by Heaven Skincare.

Hanna Gamble, Sinead O’Herlihy and Evie Garrod

Karim Akroum and Ikraam Hussain

Ellen McNamara and Kate McNamara

Kris Cholmondeley and Alex Ollerearnshaw

Emma Burford and Josh Norman

Luisa Hackney and Krishma Parmar

Sophie Jade Hall and Amber Juggins

Gabriella Rooney, Esme Dublin and Lusia Haraburda

Lisa Piddington and Andrew Riley

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Coventry and Warwickshire Sports Awards 2018

Gail Emms MBE co-hosting the evening

Ricoh Arena, Coventry Thursday 29th November 2018

Once again, the great and good of Coventry’s sporting community came together for the stand-out event on the regional sporting calendar – the Coventry & Warwickshire Sports Awards. Welcoming professionals, amateurs, teams and clubs to the city’s most popular sport and events venue, the Ricoh Arena, with 13 awards up for grabs.

Headline Sponsor, Liberty table with Gary Newbon MBE

Hosted by legendary sports broadcaster, Gary Newbon MBE and Olympic badminton star, Gail Emms MBE, the night provided the opportunity for people of all ages and abilities to be recognised for their success. The evening’s most illustrious accolade was the Lifetime Achievement Award, which went the way of John Sillett. A former Coventry City player and manager, John, is responsible for masterminding one of the club’s greatest achievements leading the team to FA Cup glory in 1987.

Keith Perry from Reach plc

The Professional Sportsman of the Year Award went to Wasps rugby star, Elliot Daly, Wasps Netball player, Jade Clarke was named Professional Sportswoman of the Year and after a fantastic 2018, Coventry City FC were named Team of the Year. The award ceremony also provided the opportunity to raise money for the UK’s leading youth cricket and disabled sport’s charity, The Lord’s Taverners.

Gary Newbon MBE take to the lecturn

KEP Print Group table




Lifetime Achievement winner, John Sillett with Alan Turner from award sponsor Liberty and Gary Newbon MBE



Professional Sportsman of the Year award




Julia Regis, wife of the late Cyrille Regis MBE, collecting a posthumous award with Tom Warner from award partner Lord’s Taverners

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Speech from Marc Reeves of Reach plc

Headline Sponsor HSBC UK hosts a table

The ICC, Birmingham Thursday 1st November 2018

From large-scale companies who have been operating for many years, to those who are trying to make a name for themselves in their sector, the Birmingham Post Business Awards celebrates the success of all businesses in the region. Taking place at the ICC in the city, the awards were hosted by television presenter, Emma Jesson and comedian, Mark Dolan. There were 15 awards on offer at the ceremony giving businesses of all sizes and from across a range of sectors, the chance to be acknowledged.

Douglas Dawson from Liberty and guests

The centrepiece of the event is undoubtedly the ‘Company of the Year’ award. Presented to a business which has demonstrated excellence in every area of their work, this year it went to property auction company SDL Auctions. It isn’t just these big companies that are celebrated at the awards either, with the SME Business of the Year award going to software solutions company, B13 Technology. New businesses open their doors all the time in the city, and escape room company, EscapeTime, won the New Business of the Year award.

Evening entertainment, Jamie Raven

Entertainment on the night was provided by Britain’s Got Talent magician, Jamie Raven.

Katie Niland from The Belfry Hotel & Resort and guests


Bay Gardens Beach Resort & Spa

Evening host, Mark Dolan


Matt Jones of Oxbridge Home Learning, winner of Business Entrepreneur of the Year


Mr Electric Birmingham takes home Family Business of the Year Award


GUYKAT wins Export Award sponsored by Birmingham City Airport


Company of the Year winner, SDL Auctions Bigwood


Listen. Understand. Deliver.


Winner of Not-For-Profit Award, Birmingham Children’s Hospice Charity

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King Power Stadium, Leicester Friday 25th January 2019

The stars were out in full force for the Annual Celebrity Charity Ball, at Leicester’s King Power Stadium. Hosted by Derek Redmond, guests included Coronation Street icon William Roache MBE, acclaimed runner David Moorcroft OBE and former international rugby star Neil Back MBE, as well as children’s TV legends Dick and Dom, to name just a few. All in attendance were treated to a magnificent ‘Evening in the West End’ theme with a unique Burn’s Night twist, complete with poetry and tartan pins. Entertainment came in the form of ABBA Reunited, The West End Jerseys and Adrian Dixon & Caron Pascoe, before raising further funds via a charity auction and raffle with Charlie Ross.

William Roache MBE

Now in its 18th year, the event raises funds for Rainbows Hospice for Children and Young People, with proceeds contributing to the provision of much needed care for youngsters suffering from lifelimiting and life-threatening conditions.

The X Factor Star, Andy Abraham and wife Denise


Tables all set for the guests to arrive

TV Entertainers, Dick and Dom

Kevin Carrick of Data Clarity and guests

Matthew Hoggard MBE and Sarah Hoggard

Derek Redmond, Denise Abraham, Kellie Maloney, Charlie Ross, Andy Abraham, Craig Phillips and William Roache MBE

Elliott Watts of HSBC and guests

Magician, Ben Hanlin

Auctioneer for the night, Charlie Ross

Rainbows’ parent speaker informs where the vital funds go

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networking breakfast Speaker David Walsh entertaining guests

Table plan ready for guests to arrive and be seated


THE MAN WHO BROUGHT DOWN LANCE ARMSTRONG Searcys at The Gherkin, London Tuesday 30th April 2019 The man who uncovered one of the largest doping scandals in sporting history gave an inspiring talk earlier this year at Champions Speakers’ networking breakfast. Taking place at Searcys at The Gherkin, renowned journalist David Walsh discussed his fascinating 13-year pursuit of cyclist Lance Armstrong which saw him uncover a doping programme that sent shockwaves around the world. This discovery went some way to revealing the extent of the doping problem in the USA and the sport of cycling.

Guests enjoying the speech at Searcys at The Gherkin

As well as shedding light on this huge part of his career, he also discussed topics such as mental resilience, persistence in the face of adversity and charted his journey to becoming one of the most respected names in journalism. Guests at the event were treated to a breakfast on arrival before David took to the stage to give his speech. Following the speech people took the opportunity to network in the surroundings of one of London’s most iconic landmarks.

Guests networking

David Walsh networking with guests



ENGLISH BRANDS Heritage A: English Brands, The Mailbox, 44 Wharfside Street, Birmingham B1 1RE T: +44 (0) 121 448 8851 147 / /



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