Page 1

ISSUE 13 £2



Famous faces from the past  FORMBY

Stunning property  BURSCOUGH

Antique buying



A day to remember SOCIETY • HOMES • FASHION • CARS • SPORT • EVENTS • ANTIQUES Gr8Life_coversummer10.indd 1

19/05/2010 11:32

The best GCSE results in West Lancashire Early Years Foundation Stage Reception Classes

Holmeswood transport from all areas

Unique Gothic Storytelling Tower



56 acres of park and woodland

New in-house Sailing Club on Scarisbrick Hall Lake Throughout the summer holidays, Scarisbrick Hall will be running both under 7’s and over 7’s clubs to include themed weeks covering:

Sport • Nature & eNviroNmeNt techNoLogy • photography SaiLiNg aNd caNoeiNg


Virtual Learning Environment (Apple Mac & PC) 1088495 scar hall.indd 2

19/05/2010 11:35



Location find out more

01704 880200


1088495 scar hall.indd 3

19/05/2010 11:36

Blow away your winter blues with the new Summer Collection Now Available at Reputation Menswear

Born to enjoy The ultimate exclusive male

Ladies & Mens Fashion Watches in stock

Malcolm and Alex look forward to seeing you

Reputation m e n s w e a r

92-96 Lord Street, Southport, PR8 1JR Tel: 01704 536959

P04.indd 1

We also offer ‘Utimate Hire’ for weddings and formal wear


19/05/2010 11:40

ISSUE 13 £2



Famous faces from the past  FORMBY

Stunning property  BURSCOUGH

Antique buying



Cover image courtesy of


PUBLISHER Betty Drummond

It’s been a Gr8 few months for us here at the

EDITOR Rebecca Keegan

magazine. In May we were shortlisted as Regional

01704 392332

Magazine of the Year in the 2010 newspaper awards.

It’s a tough category and although we didn’t win, EDITORIAL TEAM Henry James Natasha Young David Simister David Raven

we were one of only six magazines in the country to be shortlisted, so we’re delighted. The fact we were one of only a few magazines to be nominated for this award reflects the commitment we have to our readers and advertisers. Delivering a top

PHOTOGRAPHY Martyn Snape John Swift

quality product and a good read makes Gr8 Life the number one local magazine in


and West Lancashire and events taking place here because the area is so fantastic


01704 392338

PRODUCTION TEAM 01704 392320

the area. We tailor specifically for our local readers. We write about the people of Sefton with endless stories to tell. We’re very proud to say Gr8 Life is the only local magazine that does this. This summer we have another brilliant edition for you. Our annual wedding feature is as stunning as ever, filled with beautiful pictures, advice, opinions and more for that special day. Also we’ve teamed up with Codorníu to give you the chance to win ten cases of wine for your wedding reception worth more than £1,000. We’ve delved into Southport’s past and discovered some amazing superstars

Amy Houghton Emma Lyon Michael Rose David Atherton Ian McCabe DISTRIBUTION TEAM

01704 392340

have paid visits to the town - it’s a feature well worth a look. On top of all this we have property, antiques, an afternoon at the cricket and much more. Whatever the weather brings this season, and let’s be honest, we can’t predict it, have a fantastic summer, and enjoy the latest edition of Gr8 Life.


Champion Media Group Clare House, 166 Lord Street, Southport, PR9 0QA Telephone: 01704 392392 Fax: 01704 531327

Rebecca Keegan, Editor ©

2010 Champion Media Group. All rights reserved. No part may be reproduced without the prior written permission of the publisher. Whilst every care is taken, details, prices etc. are subject to change without notice and the publisher can take no responsibility for any errors or omissions whatsoever.

5 welcome page.indd 1

19/05/2010 11:44

Contents 9

Gr8 Antiques: An Oldie but a Goodie


We go shopping in Burscough

15 Gr8 History: We’ll always have Southport The famous faces who have visited the town

19 Gr8 Feature: A Perfect Engagement Special section on the perfect wedding


45 Gr8 Sport: The Gentleman’s Game An afternoon at the cricket


49 Gr8 Motors: Road vs Rail We put a Peugeot to the test

53 Gr8 Homes: Perfectly Balanced A beautiful Formby property

58 Gr8 Celebrations: Not so Odd Afterall The Oddfellows society mark 200 years


64 Gr8 Inspiration: Spotlight on Success Three great stories


67 Gr8 Events: What’s On Dates for your diary

71 Gr8 Pictures: Society Pages Memories from your special events 6 Contents summer.indd 1

19/05/2010 11:47

Making a splash! Come along and see why...

Merchant Taylors’ Infants’ and Junior Schools provide the best foundation for pupils aged 4 – 11. There are many reasons to choose us: high academic standards; quality specialist teaching; small class sizes and an extensive extra curricular activity programme. We are committed to providing excellent facilities and, from September 2011, all pupils will benefit from the new £5.5 million state-of-the-art sports complex. Enrolment for the Mixed Infants’ or Boys’ and Girls’ Junior Schools takes place throughout the year and families are most welcome to visit at any time. Senior Girls

Junior Boys

Extensive School Bus Service Available “ A happy, friendly and nurturing atmosphere that feels like a family.” Parental Survey 2010

Mixed Infants & Junior Girls


Senior Boys

Mixed Infants & Junior Girls 0151 924 1506 Junior Boys 0151 949 9333

The Merchant Taylors’ Schools, Crosby: a company limited by guarantee. Registered in England: Company Number: 6654276. Registered office: Liverpool Road, Crosby, Liverpool L23 0QP. Registered Charity Number: 1125485

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19/05/2010 11:48

LANC S ANTIQUE T S E S W RDB ACCREDITED 5 STARS ����� Our main aim is to provide a ‘home from home’ for all our guests. We take great pride in making sure that our guests feel completely comfortable, feel they are among friends and will never hesitate to ask for anything they need. In other words, they feel totally at home. We currently have spacious single rooms with en-suite facilities available - Viewings are welcome





In March, we started work on an extension to include 8 additional bedrooms and an extra lounge. Completion is scheduled for late Summer 2010.


Station Road • Rufford • Ormskirk • Lancashire • L40 1TB All General Enquiries Telephone: 01704 821713 Fax: 01704 822753


• Antique and older style furniture bought and sold • We also sell on a commission

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For Unbeatable Quality and Service 01704 514951 • Fax. 01704 514951 121 Manchester Road, Southport



Styles come and go, but quality never goes out of fashion FOR A COMPLETE SERVICE Tel.

WEST LANCS ANTIQUES Victoria Mill, Victoria Street, Burscough, Lancashire, L40 0SN Tel: 01704 894634 Fax: 01704 894486 Email:


OPEN: Mon-Fri, 9.00-5.30 • Sat, 11.00-4.30

19/05/2010 11:49

There are a few things to remember when going antique buying - but it’s not so scary. Rebecca Keegan visits a local warehouse to explore.


’m sitting in a small office in the corner of a huge warehouse, asking antiques expert Brett Griffiths his best tip for buying antique furniture. The room

is filled with old clocks, dark wood cabinets, trinkets (which are probably worth a fortune) and some larger wooden objects. I don’t know what they are, but I want one. ”Remember,






being conned. Anyone can fall for a good scam - so always buy from an experienced and reputable trader,” he replies. Brett is the owner of West Lancs Antiques Exports in Burscough. 

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To describe the warehouse as a Tardis

“I don’t think that you could sit someone

would be quite accurate. There are rows and

down now and teach them about antiques.

rows of wardrobes, tables, chests of draws,

It’s in you or it’s not - I’ve grown up in this

mirrors, chairs, pool tables - I could go on all

environment all my life. It’s in my blood.”

day, but if I was to list every item in the shop I’d still be there now.

When wandering around the warehouse, I’m almost overwhelmed by the sheer volume

“It’s quite empty at the moment as we’ve

of items available.

recently put together some containers to

“Trends come and go with antiques,” adds

send overseas,” he says as I gawp at the sheer

Brett. “At one point Georgian furniture was

amount of furniture on the ground floor.

all the range, then people wanted Victorian.

Brett has been working with antiques

“At the moment it’s retro pieces from the

since he was just 12-years-old, so if there’s

‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s. This is understandable as

anyone who can tell me what’s so special

it fits the modern lifestyle. It has very clean

about them, it’s him.

lines and is convenient.

“There’s a story behind every antique - a

“Personally I prefer traditional pieces, but I can see why people are drawn to it at the moment.”

history. Every piece is special. “It’s the quality too. These days furniture

The warehouse has three floors. The

is mass-produced and not always to the best

ground floor is layered with wardrobes,

quality. It may look nice, but it won’t stand

chests of draws, coffee tables, grandfather

the test of time. Antique furniture has - and

clocks and other big furniture. Climbing the

always will.”

stairs, passing a wall full of mirrors takes

Brett’s grandfather owned Percy Sutcliffe’s

me to the first floor, which like the ground,

Antiques in Southport. When he died his wife

has rows and rows of furniture, as well as a

took over the running and following on from

restoration area. “I have a full time restorer

that his parents took over.

on the premises. A lot of the pieces we buy

Brett has now been in Burscough for

will need work to be mended to bring them back to their former glory.”

twenty years. 10 antiques.indd 3

19/05/2010 15:00

And that’s something to keep in mind

attached to walls and even hanging from the

when shopping for antiques. “Sometimes you

ceiling beams - I almost expect them to come

can pay more for an item to be restored than

to life and start dancing around me like in the

you have paid for the piece itself.

1963 film Sword in the Stone.

“Always ask the dealer or seller what

Leaving the building I take a few wrong

restoration is needed on an item. And get a

turns, only to stumble upon more rooms

second opinion too.”

packed with more furniture.

The top floor of the warehouse is the

The fact that this warehouse is filled with

most breathtaking. It’s like walking into a

unique pieces and antiques can seem quite

Tim Burton film as the huge attic room holds

overwhelming. I suggest you know what

hundreds upon hundreds of chairs. All shapes,

you’re looking for when you visit - or take a

all sizes and all colours. They are stacked high,

flask and compass. 

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19/05/2010 11:52

As featured on

Channel 4’s RESTORATION MAN programme


Bath Lodge, Ormskirk

1087650 Stone Masters.indd 1

19/05/2010 11:53

The Home of Stone F

eatured on Channel 4’s Restoration Man,

kitchen. We also helped in specifying and

Bath Lodge was a ruined folly on an old

supplying the polished limestone tiles and

Georgian estate near Ormskirk, which dates

worktops for the kitchen and the tiles for

back to 1740. This ivy-covered, uninhabitable

the en-suite bathroom – all to the very

shell had lain derelict for over 50 years, but

highest quality.

was rescued from oblivion by new owner

“The piece-de-resistance is the backlit

Mark Horton, who set about restoring this

honey onyx wall which we supplied and fitted

Grade II-listed building to its former glory.

in the bathroom; more a work of art than just

Rumoured to be haunted and reputedly a stopover for Oliver Cromwell in his war with

The quality workmanship and customer

Charles I and his cavaliers, the restoration

service involved in the restoration of Bath

of Bath Lodge was managed by Liberty

Lodge is just another example of the hard-

Contractors of Southport, who contracted

won reputation and expertise, that the

Granite House for much of the interior stone

Granite House team brings to any project

design and supply.

they are involved in.


As featured in Living West Lancs

a stone wall.”




“We manage all our commissions for each

Johnstone explained: “We were commissioned

and every customer in exactly the same way.

by Liberty, to advise in the design and selection

Each is unique and we offer a bespoke service

of the limestone flooring for the hallway and

that is second to none,” added Brian.

The Granite House Guide to Stone in your Home • GRANITE An excellent choice for kitchen worktops, countertops, floors and other heavily used surfaces • MARBLE Ideal for entrance halls, porches, bathrooms, floors and hearths • ONYX Decorative quartz used for features and panels • QUARTZ Exceptional strength, density and hardness, suitable for most applications • SLATE Versatile and resistant to chemicals • TRAVERTINE AND LIMESTONE Has an earthy appeal, both indoors and out 13 granite.indd 2

19/05/2010 12:29

La Boheme Femme

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A family run salon with over 40 years experience. Specialist in all aspects of LADIES, GENTS and CHILDREN’S hair care.

Contemporary Jewellery, including designer ranges from Nour London & Fiorelli

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plus an applicationn of products on firstt visit to the Salon.

Vikki Vikkki is a Master Qualifi Qu ed Nail Technician offering all Tec things thin fabulous for fingers ng and toes

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Tel. 07747 315 824


01695 570404

A visit with a difference Fettlers Wharf Marina and Thowd Boatman’s Cabin in Rufford Perfectly situated along the Leeds Liverpool Canal you will find, hidden from the road, Fettlers Wharf Marina, which provides mooring for canal barges, from small traditional narrowboats through to larger Dutch style barges all in a variety of different colours; The marina provides all modern facilities for the boater. A morning can be spent walking along the canal, watching the ducks pitter patter along the banks, whilst viewing the stunning gardens backing on to the canal. On returning to the Marina the afternoon can be spent in The Thowd Boatman’s Cabin which serves Locally sourced, Home cooked food at reasonable prices. This family run Tea Room has built up a varied menu since opening its door in 2004, and includes Stewed Steak topped with Puff Pastry, which has been a firm favourite with visitors ever since; Home cooked Breakfasts, Light Snacks and hot lunches are available, and Sundays at the Tea

room see Traditional Sunday Roast Lunches being served with a homemade Yorkshire pudding, and a Large jug of Gravy, which are not to be missed! Afternoon Tea is a real treat; served on a traditional three tier cake stand, offering a choice of sandwiches, sultana scones, strawberry preserve, clotted cream, fairy cakes and a pot of tea to finish. Or simply tempt your-self to some of the delicious cakes on display from home made Tea Loaf and Carrot Cake, to fresh vanilla slices and moist sponge cakes. The Tea Room boasts a traditional ambience and charm that sets it apart from other cafes. visitors can experience the relaxed, friendly and warm welcome they receive whilst browsing over traditional canal ware, jams, marmalade and accompaniments that are for sale. Wayne and the staff pride themselves on excellent customer service; “It is a very traditional tea room, and we look forward to seeing visitors return again and again”.

Telephone 01704 821197 20 Station Road • Rufford • Lancashire L40 1TB

P14.indd 1


Open Daily from 9.30am - 5pm

19/05/2010 11:56

We’ll always have...

Forget Hollywood and Pinewood Studios - if you wanted to go celeb-spotting in the Forties and Fifties, the streets of Southport were just the place to start, writes David Simister.


magine the scene. It’s the summer of 1953 and you’re sat in the lobby of Birkdale’s Palace Hotel minding your own business,

when you spy a face you’ve seen somewhere before. The man walking past you is definitely someone you’ve seen before, but not for at least a couple of years. Musician. Actor. Victim of a cruel scandal. Yes, you really have just clocked Frank Sinatra. If any of Hollywood’s big names came to stay

at one of the town’s hotels tomorrow, chances are we’d get to read about it in Heat magazine within the week, but it’s amazing to think 

15 Hollywood.indd 2

19/05/2010 11:58

how many A-listers you could have bumped into on the town’s streets during the film industry’s Golden Age. “Some of the stories of the stars’ visits are very bizarre in many ways, as a lot of them visited in the 1950s when they had fallen on hard times, and gone on to bigger things later on. Frank Sinatra, for instance, was practically penniless when he came to the town, but had just made From Here to Eternity,” says Southport author James Ford, who has written Hollywood Legends in Southport, chronicling the celebrities’ links to the town. “It was while he was in Southport that he got a call saying he had got an Oscar for the film, and from there on his career skyrocketed. It was while he was staying in the town he realised his career was going to change forever.” The Rat Pack legend and Oscar-winning actor journeyed to Southport during the darker days of his career, after the scandal surrounding his affair with Ava Gardner led to him being dumped by both MGM and MCA, his managers, in 1950. Even then he still expected to be thought of as a star, and stormed out of the town’s Prince of Wales Hotel, on Lord Street, when staff there didn’t give him the red carpet treatment. That’s how he ended up staying at the Palace Hotel in August, 1953, which is where he received the call from America that a film he’d played a part in - From Here to Eternity - had wowed critics. According to James, it was that day in Southport when he realised his luck was to change forever.

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19/05/2010 11:58

It’s hard to imagine the king of swing soaking up the Southport sunshine after getting a call like that, but it really happened. James tells GR8Life that he uncovered many of the tales of the rich and famous visiting the town by accident, when he was researching a book investigating the history of the Palace Hotel, which for more than a century provided visitors to Southport with a glamorous place to stay, including some of the film stars featured in his book. Ironically the hotel itself became a film star many years later when it was used as one of the shooting locations for Norman Wisdom’s 1969 flick What’s Good for the Goose, released

after the hotel had closed for business and just a few months before the Birkdale building was demolished. “All the Hollywood stories couldn’t go in the Palace Hotel book. Another book had to be written,” James adds. “It has been an absolute pleasure researching this book, and it was somewhat deflating when it came to an end.” Other film legends featured in James’ book include Fred Astaire, who performed at the Palais De Danse, the site now occupied by the former Woolworths building, and Clark Gable, who featured the Palace Hotel in his war documentary film “Combat America.” 

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19/05/2010 11:58

And a string of stars stayed in the town for performances in the North West, including Wizard of Oz lady Judy Garland when she performed at Liverpool’s Empire Theatre, and Laurel and Hardy, who you could have seen at Lord Street’s Garrick Theatre if you fancied a fun night out in the August of 1952. It’s hard to believe that so many actors and actresses whose names still remain iconic today are among the thousands who have visited and enjoyed Southport, even though I still feel a bit star studded to think the Brad Pitts and Jessica Albas of decades gone by were so keen to visit the elegant seaside town where I live. After all, there’s no place like home. Hollywood Legends is available in Southport’s bookstores and online at, costing £9.99. James’ book on the Birkdale Palace Hotel is due to be published later this year 

18 Hollywood.indd 5

19/05/2010 11:58

Dress to impress Gr8 Life has put together some of our favourite dresses for the 2010/11 wedding season.


he theme for 2010 and 2011 wedding is

Owner of Glitz Ritz & Tiaras in Southport,

romance. Your wedding dress is one of the

Deborah Baldock tells Gr8 Life: “Designers create

most personal choices you’ll ever make

more beautiful wedding dresses every year -

- after your husband-to-be, that is. In fact,

they are stunning.

choosing it is not unlike falling in love. You know

“Some brides are even shying away from

when you’ve found the right one, according to

regular white and ivory for something with a bit

designer Lyn Ashworth.

more colour.” 

Ronald Joyce

19 Dresses.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:02

Ronald Joyce

20 Dresses.indd 3

19/05/2010 12:02

As well as full length and fabulous, designers

they are detailed with exquisite jewellery and

are catering for the more subtle and chic brides,

many full flowing skirts. They will just amaze the

with calf length simple dresses for those less

brides, they can make you cry looking at them.”

extravagant occasions.

Owner of Lulu Belles in Ormskirk, Charlotte

“Every bride is different,” says Lynne Flower

Langley, adds: “As well as big and beautiful, lots

of Beau Brides in Formby. “Designers know

of women are looking at vintage style dresses

that as well as the classic fairytale dress, many

this year.

brides-to-be these days would prefer a more understated and dainty look. “This season’s gowns are absolutely amazing,

“Many of the 1950s styles are very popular. There’s a classic Audrey Hepburn inspired trend. It’s beautiful.” n

Victoria Jane

Victoria Jane

The Rainbow Club

The Rainbow Club

21 Dresses.indd 4

19/05/2010 12:03


Designer D esiggn Bridal Goownss, including Gowns, 20 00 bridesmaid briddes 200 styles an nd accessories acc and

50-52 Wayfarers Arcade, Southport 1087923

01704 500155





"2)$!,"/54)15% -!2+%4342%%4„3/54(0/2402((





W W W B R I D A L B O U T I Q U E  C O  U K 7(9./4!,3/6)3)4/527!22).'4/.34/2% %4%2.)49"2)$!,7%!2

P22.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:06

Keep it in check Organisation is key, but

“He was just getting out of the car to go into

remember not to stress, says Gr8 Life’s Emily Williams.

the church and caught his pants on something and they were torn and left with a big hole in the left leg. “At the time he panicked and it seemed like

Being organised is key to the perfect wedding.

the worst thing in the world. He couldn’t even

There’s never a guarantee that everything will go

swap with his best man because his best man was

to plan on the day - in fact there’s always a story

three inches shorter than him.”

to tell about something going wrong, and it’s usually something to laugh about later. “My husband, David, ripped his pants on the car on our wedding day,” says Eve Hawthorne from Ormskirk.

In the end, David decided to just ignore it, and it wasn’t until the wedding reception that Eve even noticed. “We laughed about it then - and we have a funny story to remember the day,” she adds.

We’ve put together a brief list of things to remember in the organising of a wedding - but the most important thing to remember is, no matter what, enjoy the day and don’t stress about the little things. • Appoint bridesmaids and best man

• Order flowers for reception and ceremony

• Commence a wedding planning diary

• Order flowers for bride and bridesmaids

• Book church or wedding venue

• Order corsages for two mothers

• Book and organise reception

• Order buttonholes for grooms, best man,

• Make out guest list

ushers and guests

• Order printed wedding invitations and other stationery

• Book photographer and/or video • Organise the cake

• Complete gift list

• Arrange transport for bride to ceremony (to

• Plan and select bride’s gown

the reception is groom’s responsibility)

• Plan and choose bridesmaids’ outfits • Choose a going-away outfit

• Arrange transport for main wedding party and other guests

• Choose/hire suit for groom

• Record replies to wedding invitations

• Choose bride’s mother’s outfit

• Update gift list as gifts are received

• Choose groom’s mother’s outfit

• Book honeymoon (groom’s responsibility) n

23 Check List.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:07

Fine grooming Nick Gordon gives us an insight into the groom’s way of thinking in the run up to his big day.


eddings just aren’t the same these

changed? What does it mean for me and, most

days. I mean, take my parents for

importantly, how am I coping?

example. In 1967, a very young

Let’s start with a sobering thought: the

and, I’m presuming, innocent Mr and Mrs

average wedding in 2010 is expected to cost a

Gordon made their solemn vows at St Peter and

shade under £20,000. Ouch. This means just

Pauls. This was followed by a polite lunch at

a little more preparation, negotiation, planning

the Blundellsands Hotel and before you knew

and saving than in 1967.

it, they were off to Lyme Regis to courteous

Obviously these facts were far from my mind

applause, tin cans trailing from the Morris

one glorious sunny day in the Spanish village of

Minor all the way.

Mojacar, when my girlfriend Lucy accepted the

As befitted the era, my father has since told

unbeatable offer to become my future wife.

me his contribution to the build-up of his big

Now I’ve got three months to go, they are a

day was, to put it politely, minimal. He knew

harsh, but hopefully achievable, reality.

the time and date, rehearsed his vows, even

After the engagement we made numerous

invited the future father-in-law round for a

visits to churches, hotels and, bizarrely, farms,

whiskey or two.

before eventually settling on the CHET centre

But fast forward a few years and it’s a different story. Weddings are big business and

in Little Crosby, which is probably a mixture of all three.

it would appear that the groom - shock horror

So that was the venue taken care of and,

- is starting to play a bigger role. So what’s

what’s more, it was a joint decision in which I

24 Groom 2.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:08

actively participated. Good start!

during a hastily arranged trip to London I chose

But this was just the beginning. It wasn’t just

a simple, brushed finish, white gold band, which

where, but when, how and how much (although

I felt more than comfortable with and will be

obviously not why) that was still raging in my

proud to wear.

already creaking brain. There was a huge and

Clearly, wedding and bridesmaid dresses are

bewildering amount of choices to be made and,

off limits and rightly so. This process involved

after a while, I must admit I was starting to feel

a week long pilgrimage from my mother-in-

the pressure.

law to be, who, aided and abetted by Lucy,

However, as a self-styled modern groom, I tried to play my part and involve myself in

saw to it that the bride’s party would all be suitably attired.

the decision making process. Without being

With many of our friends already married,

overly stereotypical, what I hope I’ve managed

we’ve both had plenty of practice as guests and

to do so far (verification required from fiancée

it has undoubtedly helped us decide on some

here) is concentrate on the areas I feel I can

of the finer details. Flowers (obviously), cake

contribute the most.

(does anyone actually eat any?), favours (what

Obviously I’ve chosen a snappy suit, had a hand in the entertainment (live music with our

are they exactly?). One by one, though, we’ve ticked them off.

favourite songs) and sampled a few morsels of

With us both working full time, the past 18

food. But I’ve also enjoyed tackling some of the

months have been an exhausting but enjoyable

less familiar ground, such as researching suitable

experience. But we’ve got through it together


and can’t wait to share the big day with all our




destinations. And regarding the latter I’m

friends and family.

delighted to announce that the itinerary and

In 1967 it seemed so easy and hassle-free

booking of a two week safari and beach holiday

for the groom. Nowadays there is undoubtedly

is all my own work!

more for the men to do - and I’m glad I’ve

Wedding rings can be a thorny subject from

played my part. In fact, the only thing that

a male perspective. I’ve never worn jewellery

remains is for me to invite the future father-in-

and at first the prospect of it seemed odd. But,

law round for that glass of whiskey! n 25

Groom 2.indd 2

19/05/2010 12:09


Ormskirk Civic Hall... A unique venue for your special event offering a variety of options for your needs Main Hall, Reception Room, Bar, Kitchen, Stage and Dressing Rooms are all available

Wedding & Highland Wear Also Available to Hire or Purchase

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P26.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:10

Gr8 Competition

Win the wine for your wedding reception


ou’ve been planning your wedding for months; the invitations have been sent, menu planned and your all important

dream dress on order.

There are just a few

details remaining, including ordering the wine for your reception. Gr8 Life has teamed up with Codorníu to offer one bride-to-be five cases of Anna de Codorníu Brut and five cases of Anna de Codorníu Rosé sparkling wine. Anna de Codorníu Brut is a fresh sparkling wine ideal for getting your reception off to a bubbly start. Anna de Codorníu Rosé is a modern blend of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, combining glamour and elegance - a perfect choice for your dream day. n

To be in with a chance of winning, just answer the following question:

What grape variety is not in Anna de Codorníu Rosé? A/ Pinot B/ Noir Shiraz C/ Chardonnay Send your answer along with a name, address and daytime telephone number to: Codorníu Competition, Gr8 Life Magazine, 166 Lord Street, Southport, PR9 0QA. Or email: Closing date for entries is July 30 2010. Entrants must be 18 or over. Prize will be delivered in one order to address requested by winner. Editor’s decision is final.

If you would like to celebrate your special day with Anna de Codorníu, visit Aughton Wines, Queens Road and Church Road in Formby.

Model Me Hair Nail & Beauty Salon provide clients with a very relaxed and friendly atmosphere to receive any one of our extensive list of treatments for hair, nails and beauty, all under one roof for the ultimate make over.


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With all the top name treatments within the salon, we continue to match the latest trends within the industry. Popular celebrity favourites such as The Nouveau Semi Permanent lashes, worn by Cheryl Cole, the Crystal Clear Microdermabrasion skin treatment, used by Victoria Beckham, Madonna and Katie Price, and Minx nails, a regular choice by Rhianna, Lady Gaga and Kate Perry to name a few – all are all available at Model Me. Our staff has received extensive training and are fully knowledgeable with all the products and treatments on offer. So whether it’s a manicure, eyebrow shape or one of the celebrity must-have treatments, you can be assured you’re in safe hands, receive a top-notch service and feel gorgeous when you leave the salon. LATE NIGHTS AND PARKING FOR YOUR ABSOLUTE CONVENIENCE


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27 wine.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:30


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19/05/2010 12:16



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Leila adds: “Whiter teeth make a big

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white wedding.indd 2

19/05/2010 12:17

Bride’s eye view Bethany Norris meets bride-to-be Angela Thompson to talk organisation, wedding dresses and butterflies.


didn’t think it was going to be that big, but after

understood that certain things were important for me to

speaking to friends, I thought ‘wow, it’s actually going

decide on, and that with others I really wanted his input,

to be quite extravagant,’” the bride-to-be tells me.

so he has helped when I want and sat back on other things.

Angela Thompson is marrying her fiancé Paul in

He always makes sure he puts his comments in along the

August, and as well as holding down a demanding job,

way though.”

the-27-year old has been the main wedding organiser

Paul proposed to Angela on her birthday in 2008.

from the start.

“That year we booked the venue and had a look through

The pair will be married at Chester’s Grosvenor Pulford

material,” she says. “We booked it for 2010 so we’d have

Hotel and Spa in front of 110 guests, with an added 70

plenty of time to arrange everything.”

joining them for the reception.

And what has she loved most about the whole process?

Angela says although at times it’s been hard, she’s

“I loved going out with my friends, my mum, Paul’s mum,

enjoyed it all. “I’ve loved it, it’s been so much fun. This is

and choosing the bridesmaid’s dresses. I also loved going

the most special day of my life - I will only do it once and I

out with my mum and choosing all of the pretty things.

want everything to be perfect.

“It’s easy to get really wrapped up in the whole process

“Paul has been so supportive in the right areas. He

- but I think that’s all part of the fun.”

30 Brides View.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:19

Angela also had it easy when finding her dress: “I looked

my dad’s going to give me away,” she adds. “Paul’s brother’s

online at lots of different designers and found a dress that

girlfriend is sorting out my ‘something old, something new’

I loved.

and so on.”

“I found a shop which sold that designer, checked they

The pair can then look forward to a honeymoon in

had ‘the one’ in and off we went - me, mum and mum-

Jamaica in a newly opened five star hotel.


And any tips for other brides to be out there?

“I decided that my dress couldn’t be the only I tried on, as

“Never leave things to the last minute or you’ll end up

surely every bride should at least try on a few, so I tried on

getting stressed. Make a big deal of it, because you only do

another first - just to be awkward the one from the window

it once, and don’t let anybody bully into anything because

display - I absolutely loved it and ended up with that one.”

it’s your wedding and it’s your day, not theirs.”

Angela says she did get the ‘this is it’ feeling in her

And what’s Angela looking forward to most about her

stomach: “I love my dress, it’s simple but unusual at the same

big day? “Walking down the aisle with my Dad, and seeing

time, and I just hope Paul loves it as much as I do.”

Paul waiting at the end for me - every time I think about it

Although not held in a church, the ceremony will still be

I get full of butterflies, and a bit teary - I just hope I don’t

very traditional. “We’re having the traditional readings and

cry on the day.” n

31 Brides View.indd 2

19/05/2010 12:19


the way

to do it

To wear a hat or to not wear a hat? That is the question on a woman’s mind during wedding season. Rebecca Keegan visits The Hattery in Ormskirk to find out why this is such a big deal.

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32 hats.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:21


anda Kent-Burns and her husband

The process Manda and Mac go through to

Mac have only been in business in

make each hat takes up to four weeks, but they

Ormskirk for a short time, but it’s

have been known to complete a masterpiece in a

clear that the ladies like their hats.

much shorter time period.

The Hattery in Derby Street West is more than

The process starts with Sinamay, the main

meets the eye. Far from a simple shop the pair also

fabric used for a hat. The brim of most hats is

have a workshop upstairs where the majority of

made up of two layers of Sinamay, but Manda

their hats are made.

always uses three layers, exceeding run of the mill standards. “There are hundreds of colours of Sinamay available, and the shades can be changed by layering the material - we have to be careful though. At its first stages Sinamay bites - Mac and I have cuts and scratches all over our hands.” After moulding the brim on a block, a process that takes 24 hours and is all pinned by hand, a rim is sewn on and the crown is fixed - although I

“It’s about the quality of the product,” Manda tells me. “Each hat we make is made by hand. Attention to detail is paramount.

managed to write that in one sentence, it actually takes a lot of concentration and patience. Manda adds: “Those final touches are vital

“My favourite part of the job is seeing the look

and we custom make so much. If a lady wants a

on a woman’s face when we’ve made her dream

certain colour feather in her hat to match her bag

hat. It’s priceless.”

or shoes we will special order it.

When ordering a hat for a wedding, Manda,

“The important thing for me is to know the

who is also an image consultant, recommends

customer is happy with what she gets. We only

that the woman buys her outfit first.

wear hats for special occasions, and a lot of

“Some people dress from the accessories, but

preparation goes into it.

that’s not a good idea when it comes to having

“With the cuts and scratches, measuring, hand

a hat made. She should buy her dress and shoes

pinning, sewing and accessorising, it’s all worth

first, and bring them into the shop when making

it when we see the lady’s face when she sees her

first enquiries about a hat.”

new, custom-made hat.” n 33

hats.indd 2

19/05/2010 12:21


We would love to help you find the perfect flowers for your wedding.



To ensure the best personal service please contact Aaron Mark direct to discuss your requirements for your big day.


Flowers that dare to be different for your special day

Aaron Mark Floral Design Tel:01704 535200 11 Cambridge Arcade, Southport, PR8 1AS


P34.indd 1


130 13 0 Church Ch Road Roa oad d Formby 3NH Fo ormby by L376 3N NH T: 01704 0 70 01 704 872000 E: laurie@fl llau a ri rie@ @fl flowerstyl y eb ebyl y au yl a www.fl www flowerstylebylaurie com

19/05/2010 12:23

Flower Power The flowers are possibly the hardest thing to decide upon for the wedding day. Gr8 Life speaks to the professionals. ith thousands of varieties available,


Whether it’s understated elegance or

both traditional and contemporary,

overstated flamboyance, the flowers say a lot

it can be mind numbingly painful

about the couple.

to sift through portfolios, photographs,

“The secret is to follow your dreams and

catalogues of blooms. Professional help here

have the flowers you love which will create the

is a must.

look of your choice.” Says florist Laurie Spencer.

“It’s good to know what theme you are

“A good florist will advise where to place the

looking at,” says florist Aaron Mark. “Romantic,

arrangements to create the maximum impact

modern, fun, traditional - there are so many

if you’re on a strict budget.

things the right flowers can bring to a wedding.”

“The bride’s bouquet should be created using

A wedding without flowers would be like a

her favourite flowers and less expensive contrasting

bird without wings - utterly pointless.

flowers should be used for other arrangements.” 

35 flowers.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:27

Aaron Mark adds: “The most important thing I keep in mind is to always treat the bride to be as an individual. Every single woman is different - different tastes, opinions and ideas are what keep each wedding unique and special.

which I’m doing for a bride in July. “I always feel privileged to be allowed to bring the wow factor to a couples special day.” Some brides like to make their flowers that little bit more personal with diamantes, ribbon

“The bride is the centre of attention on her

or lucky charms.

wedding day - the bouquet she holds will be

“There’s always a way to help customise a

in every photograph - everyone will see it, so

bouquet,” says Aaron. “I recently did a multi-

getting it right is crucial.”

coloured wedding, for which I ordered in multi

Roses are the classic choice for a wedding, but peonies have made a big impact in recent years.

coloured roses especially. It was so bright and looked absolutely fantastic.” Flowers have their own significance and

“Peonies are beautiful, and lots of brides will fall in love with them when they set eyes on them,” adds Aaron.

traditions that vary across the globe and through the ages. The Victorians were fascinated by the

Laurie says: “I love amaryllis, purple vanda orchids and all lime green flowers.

meanings of different blooms and popularised the wedding rose, which represents true love.

“My favourite part of the job though is

In Tudor England, brides carried marigolds

looking at a venue with the bride and groom,

dipped in rosewater and ate them afterward,

and turning there dreams to reality with the

since they were though to be aphrodisiacs.

flowers of there choice.

Ancient Greek brides often carried ivy as

“The flowers should definitely reflect the

a symbol of never-ending love and in Indian

bride’s personality, you certainly need the

tradition both the bride and groom wear

confidence to carry off cerise pink and orange

a headpiece. n

36 flowers.indd 3

19/05/2010 12:25

Maid for you Although With so many all eyes colours, are on styles the bride and on fabrics her wedding to chooseday, from, the bridesmaids picking outcome a bridesmaid’s in a close dress second, can seem withoverwhelming. so many colours, styles Gr8 Life andseeks fabrics expert to chose advice. from, it’s hard to know where to start. Gr8 Life investigates.


here is only one real golden rule when it comes to choosing bridesmaid dresses,” says Deborah Baldock of Glitz Ritz & Tiaras.

“That is to think about the people who are wearing them. If your bridesmaids have different figures, you need to pick a style that will suit them all, as well as a colour that will compliment them all.” But the days of choosing dresses all the same colour are slipping away, as many brides are mixing colours of their bridesmaid’s dresses, so two may be in one and two in another colour. It looks fabulous.” Popular colours this season are bold, such as royal blue, turquoise, orange, green and even black. 

37 Bridesmaids.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:28

When making the choice of the bridesmaids’ dresses, a second opinion is always vital. “I always

or four choices. Then on the second visit take all bridesmaids to try on the dresses.

recommend brides-to-be call in advance to let us

“It’s fantastic when the bridesmaids are all

know they are coming, I then usually tell them it

sorted - it can be quite emotional when the bride

would be good to have a look at our website and

has picked her dress, and she’s delighted with

pick what dresses they like so we can get them

what her maids are wearing,” adds Deborah.

ready for viewing. This also gives us an idea of

With seven years experience, Deborah has

the taste and style of the bride, so if we have any

seen hundreds of brides and shown thousands

other dresses they will like we can throw them in

of dresses.

the mix as well.

“I would usually say that bridesmaids should

“We stock 200 bridesmaid dresses - and each

keep away from pastels. It takes a very certain

of them comes in 56 colours, so it can seem

skin tone to carry the light shades off, and can

quite overwhelming at first - but that’s what

very easily wash the wearer out.

we’re here for.”

“The bridesmaids are there to compliment

Pictures: Veni Infantino for Ronald Joyce

The bride-to-be is encouraged to take the

the bride, so don’t be scared to experiment with

maid of honour along to the first visit for the

colours, shapes and fabrics - it could be the best

vital opinion, and narrow dresses down to three

decision you ever make.” n

38 Bridesmaids.indd 3

19/05/2010 12:28

39 Bridesmaids.indd 4

19/05/2010 12:28

Be our Guest Gr8 Life’s picture special of the fashions of the season for wedding guests this year.

Owner of Southport Dress Agency, Deborah Eckersley, says: “When attending a wedding as a guest, there are a couple of golden rules to follow. “The most obvious is never to wear all white or cream, although these colours are fine if teamed

Hands up if you have a wedding to attend this summer...if it’s not your own, you’re probably going through the annual ‘what to wear’ phase. There’s so much out there for the ladies this summer, and it’s all bright and cheerful. Greens, pinks, blues and reds are all the must see colours, so there’s no way of blending into the background.

with a contrasting shade. “This year, silk or satin cocktail or prom style dresses are very popular, rather than traditional suits. Team these with either a matching silk bolero or pashmina, or for a slightly more casual look, a pretty cardigan - remember, never rely on the British weather. “Although pastel colours are always popular,

Just remember though, if you’re not the bride, it’s not a day for a long white dress.

favourites for this year are bright peacock colours - cerise, royal blue and especially green. 

Pictures: Frank Usher

Bright and Beautiful - An empire line dress will keep you looking and feeling cool this summer

To Dye For - The 70’s are back with this tie dye maxi dress

40 Be our guest.indd 1

19/05/2010 12:32

Jazzy and Sexy - This maxi dress is convenient and flattering to most figures

This shift dress is cool, simple and beautiful, and although it’s ivory is doesn’t resemble a wedding gown

Dare Devil - This pillar-box red outfit makes any vamp look stylish

Baby Blue - A modest yet very chic simple dress is perfect teamed with matching mini jacket in case the sun goes in

41 Be our guest.indd 2

19/05/2010 12:32

R.L Blundell Designer Craftsmen of Fine Jewellery

An exclusive range of

R.L Blundell Craftsman Jewellers of 2a Eastbank Street offer a range of specialist services with which they can help create the special day you’ve planned for.

accessories and perfume

From engagement rings and special handcrafted unique wedding rings, to bridal gifts and accessories we have a huge choice for all.


Established for over 25 years, R.L Blundell has been creating bespoke engagement & wedding rings to cater for all individual choices and has built a reputation for excellence of craftsmanship and value with your needs in mind. Stockists of Troll beads, Daisy, Ortak and the unique and exclusive Soul Fetish range of quality jewellery.

Telephone (01704) 547 216

3-7 Wayfarers Arcade, Lord Street Southport, PR8 1NT T: 01704 513 393



P42.indd 1

If you’d really like to spoil me...




2a Eastbank Street Southport Lancashire PR8 1DW

6 Wayfarers Arcade Lord Street Southport PR8 1NT

Tel: (01704) 533035 Email:

19/05/2010 12:34

“For the mother of the bride or groom,

that extra wow factor, but fascinators can be

it is advisable to confer with the bride and

kinder to your hair and how it looks later in

each other to avoid colour clashing and

the day.

always consider how an outfit will look on the

“When choosing a wedding outfit, above all

photographs - these are how everyone will

- remember, following trends is fun, but make

remember how you looked on the day.

sure the style and colour suit you personally,

“Hats will always be popular, particularly for principal wedding guests, and they do have

Pretty Polly - This sherbet inspired dress isn’t for the faint hearted, but it’s simply stunning

Touch and Go - Wearing white to a wedding can be frowned upon - but who could resist this summer suit?

and always choose classy over sexy - style is never out of fashion.” n

Cool as a Cucumber - With ruffles making another appearance, this green summer dress is both casual and smart

Breakfast at Tiffany’s - This Audrey Hepburn style outfit will glam up the day

Baby Love - This pretty pink slip will leave the gents blushing

Lilac Lovely - Comfort meets class in this pastel number

43 Be our guest.indd 4

19/05/2010 12:33

Stunning designer collections for all occasions Celebrating 20 years in business

67 Liverpool Road, Penwortham, Preston PR1 9XD

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• Excellent personal service • Evening appointments available • Specialist in Mother of the Bride • Cruise wear • Races • Prom wear • Evening wear • Extensive casual collections • Superb Bespoke Italian shoe & handbag service

19/05/2010 12:35

David Raven visits Hightown on a summer’s day for an afternoon at the cricket.


he one thing we can rely on about our summer, is that it’s traditionally English. Each year a much-hyped-up hot season is predicted, and each year we are let

down with wind and rain. But there’s a part of Hightown where the sun always seems to shine - the local cricket club. Each week in the ‘hot season’, eleven locals don their spotless whites and step out on to England’s green and pleasant land.

45 gentlemansgame.indd 2

19/05/2010 12:37

Hightown cricket team and sponsors from Abbey Sefton Hospital

Like the knights of the round table, they each head into battle wearing padding and helmets, only armed with bats instead of swords and opting for fair play over a fair maiden. Hightown’s cricket club is based a short but flowery two-minute walk from the train station, the prestigious team having played in the Liverpool and District cricket competition since 1919. The club has been run by volunteers for 103 years, and has helped turn boys into men with Hightown Club president Chris Scrine (left) and cricket chairman, Shaun Vosloo

many junior players sticking with the original

Squire W J Blundell of Crosby, first president of the club

team until they reach a ripe old age. Honorary club president Chris Scrine explains: “There is a real community spirit here, especially in the juniors section, it really helps children mature and develop into adults. “Not only that but it is a great day out, including parking at no charge, for people who

Team photo from 1909

have a Saturday afternoon free.” A substantial number of volunteers maintain Hightown Cricket Club, which also has state-ofthe-art facilities for boules, tennis and football. But their real pride and joy is the cricket pitch, with the grass requiring some ten hours of rolling preparation a week in order to comply with national cricket standards.

Team photo from 1975

46 gentlemansgame.indd 3

19/05/2010 12:37

The club has recently announced they

Hightown Cricket Club was founded by

will be supporting cancer charity the Love

extremely wealthy landowners, the Weld-

Hope Strength Foundation and that their

Blundell family, who the cricket club still pay

sponsors for this season will be Abbey

their rent to.

Sefton Hospital.

Squire W J Blundell, a wealthy member

Their matches start at 2.30pm in the

of the Weld-Blundell family with a passion

summer and then normally finish in the late

for cricket, was the first ever president of the

evening before sunset.

Hightown club.

Spectators arrive around midday and

Proudly hung on the clubhouse walls

are treated to a full day’s entertainment in

are faded team pictures from more than

the sunshine, accompanied by a clubhouse

a century ago. It is clear that, aside from

gathering offering drinks and refreshments.

the pin-stripe blazers, archaic flat-caps and

Opening batsman Guy Edwards, 32, has come through the junior ranks and played for Hightown Cricket Club for 16 years. He says: “I have always enjoyed playing here, the standard is generally like the Premier League of cricket.

era-defining moustaches, not much has changed. The common century-old tradition for the home team to buy jugs of ale for the away team after each game still exists. And the team also still holds the sport’s

“There are some tough teams in the

reputation as a gentleman’s game by

Liverpool and District league as it includes

applauding the opposition off the field

parts of North Wales and the North West but

during each break.

we managed to finish in the top eight last season.

President Chris adds: “We are just trying to get more people involved and to encourage

“Socially, it’s a nice place to watch or play

more families to come down to enjoy a day

cricket with your friends but it also has a lot

at the cricket - I don’t think enough people

of history to it.”

realise how fun it can be.” ■ 47

gentlemansgame.indd 4

19/05/2010 12:37

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We undertake a full range of surgery in our dedicated theatres, doctor consultations, diagnostics including MRI and physiotherapy in clean comfortable surroundings. Our consultants and nursing staff are highly experienced. All bedrooms are en-suite with colour satellite TV and telephone. Each bedroom has a nurse call system to keep you in immediate contact with nursing staff, and a doctor is available on site 24 hours a day. We welcome patients who have private insurance with all of the major insurers including BUPA, PPP and Norwich Union. Self-pay patients also welcome.

ABBEY SEFTON HOSPITAL One Kenilworth Road, Crosby, Liverpool L23 3AD T: (0151)2576700

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19/05/2010 12:39


was somewhere near Shap when the phone on the Peugeot’s Bluetooth system started ringing. The M6 isn’t the prettiest route through

this wild and isolated part of Cumbria, but it is the quickest, which is what I’d need to beat the voice on the other end of the line. Photographer Cornelia Kaufmann was on a train winding its way north on one of Britain’s most famous railway lines, determined to prove it could get to our collective destination quicker than a car can. I might have been doing a steady 70 in calm, air-conditioned comfort, but Northern Rail’s finest had just pulled into Appleby, a good few miles ahead. This could be close. Just over an hour earlier we’d gone to Settle, a gorgeously tranquil town in the heart of North Yorkshire, to answer a pretty much pointless question. Rail enthusiasts already know and love this picturesque spot as the starting point of the Settle and Carlisle Railway, a 73-mile-long line which threads its way through some of England’s most glorious scenery as passes the Yorkshire Dales. The challenge was simple - can a car get from Settle to Carlisle faster than the Settle to Carlisle train can? Discuss, using the latest in a long line of Peugeot cabriolets.

David Simister takes Peugeot’s latest convertible and puts it to the ultimate test.

I was quietly confident I could win without resorting to cheating or breaking the speed limit, but embarrassed that I thought I’d bagged the wrong car for the job.

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19/05/2010 12:41

A slight blunder on the booking form meant the CC - standing for Coupe Cabriolet, or folding metal roof in layman’s terms - label had gone missing, meaning I was expecting the snappily-titled Peugeot 207 GT THP 150 to be the company’s latest hot hatch. Getting the French firm’s latest open-top instead isn’t something you’re likely to complain about, and once I’d got the metal origami over my head I couldn’t help but smile at how well it does the ‘wind-in-your-hair’ thing. It looks good too; it’s not as effortlessly stylish as the old 306 Cabriolet or graced with the delicate curves of either the 205 or 504 softtops, but when posed in front of the Ribblehead Viaduct, the railway’s stunning centrepiece, you didn’t get the feeling it was being outdone in the beauty stakes. But for this challenge I was going to need substance rather than style, and as the Carlislebound train pulled into Settle station at 15.45 precisely, I raised the roof back up and set the satnav for the fastest route north. This particular Peugeot’s got 150bhp, a turbocharger and a deliciously slick five-speed gearbox at its disposal, and it was going to need both if it was going to beat the train! My route was longer and less direct than Cornelia’s, heading towards Kendal along the A65 and then straight up the M6 to Carlisle, and on the narrow, nasty, twisty roads on the way out of Settle it seemed Peugeot might have given me the hot hatch I wanted after all. There’s no way of escaping that a cabriolet’s going to be slower and heavier than its hatchback sister, but the smoothly informative feel you get from the steering wheel and the firm - but never uncomfortable - ride convinced me more than once I was actually at the helm of a mild-mannered GTI. 50 motors peugeot.indd 3

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By the time I got to the M6, the chilly sunshine we’d enjoyed at the viaduct had turned into a dark and unrelentingly black sky, but even as the rain starting beating down I simply switched on the wipers and pounded on. I’m not a fan of the Peugeot’s too-clever computer system nestling within the central console, because the satnav wasn’t accurate enough on most occasions and the Bluetooth phone proved more hindrance than help, but with the roof up the ambience was snug enough to let you forget the worst of the Cumbrian weather. Who won? The Peugeot of course, but by much a bigger margin than I could have hoped for. When I sauntered into Carlisle city centre and pulled up at our finishing point - the frontage of the historic railway station - the arrival from Settle was still almost fifteen minutes away. I had plenty of time to find the right platform Photographs by Cornelia Kaufmann

and look smug as the train eventually chugged in, and the Peugeot had impressed me enough to prove the original point. The little 207 isn’t perfect, particularly if you need to get anyone other than Pygmies in the rear seats or need a big boot, but it does what it’s designed to do brilliantly. I’d probably forgo the back seats and the metal roof altogether and go for the more involving drive of Mazda’s MX-5, but I really couldn’t fault this fun and feisty Peugeot. My only regret was that my route might have been quickest but it wasn’t the best; that honour goes to the stunning Settle and Carlisle Railway, which makes up for being slower by offering simply sublime scenery. If you haven’t got a Peugeot 207 CC at your disposal, it’s well worth a try. ■ 51

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Telephone: (01704) 878855 Fax: (01704) 872147 ‘THE KNOLL’ ST GEORGES ROAD HIGHTOWN £795,000

This fine detached residence of character, has been sympathetically renovated by the present owners, yet still retains its original charm and character. The property, which enjoys an elevated position in this much sought after location in Old Hightown, affords thoughtfully extended family accommodation and has the advantage of extensive split level gardens with three stables, a tack room for horse lovers and our Vendors currently rent a paddock to the rear of the garden from the landowner. The accommodation on offer consists of: Feature arch open porch, enclosed vestibule, large dining hall, cloakroom/w.c., elegant drawing room, sitting room, splendid farmhouse style dining kitchen open to family room with study area, butlers pantry/utility room. On the first floor there is a master bedroom with en-suite shower room, four further double bedrooms, en-suite shower room and a large family bathroom/shower room. The property also benefits from having no upward chain.




This stunning contemporary new build residence with southerly rear aspect is situated in one of the most sought after locations in Freshfield. The property, which is conveniently located for Formby Golf Club, The Pinewoods Nature Reserve and beach, has bright and spacious tastefully furbished accommodation which consists of: Spacious reception hall with atrium, cloakroom/w.c., elegant entertaining room with dining area, study, magnificent breakfast kitchen/family dining room, laundry room, family room/snug. To the 1st floor there is a master suite comprising a large bedroom with balcony, beautiful en-suite bath/shower room and gymnasium/nursery or large walk-in wardrobe. There are two further double bedrooms and an en-suite. The 2nd floor has two further double bedrooms and a luxury bathroom. Outside the property has electrically controlled security gates and an entry phone system, it also benefits from having CCTV and outside lighting. The south facing rear garden has decking with a white water SPA W1 heated swimming pool and Jacuzzi with swim against current and water cannon. Viewings highly recommended.



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Universal House, Kirkby Bank Road Knowsley Industrial Estate, Kirkby, Knowsley L33 7BY Tel: 0151 546 0667 • Fax: 0151 547 4964 Email: • Web:

P52.indd 1

We are delighted to offer for sale this magnificent double fronted detached family residence situated on an excellent plot in this much sought after established neighbourhood in Aughton. This opulent property, which was completed in 2003, has been built to a high standard throughout to include under floor heating, is surrounded by secluded gardens with mature trees, shrubs and bushes and offers excellent accommodation comprising: Large reception hall with centre staircase, rear entertaining room, dining room, t.v./games room with bar, play room, study, family room, splendid ‘Mark Wilkinson’ dining kitchen, boot room. The 1st floor has a galleried landing with the master bedroom and en-suite off, there are 4 further double bedrooms (one at present used as a dressing room), 3 en-suites and a family bathroom/shower room, there is also a laundry/ironing room. A turned staircase takes you to the 2nd floor which has a snooker/home cinema room. Outside there is a large double width garage and security system.


This magnificent four bedroomed detached residence is set in approximately a third of an acre of delightful landscaped gardens in this exclusive location convenient for The Pinewoods Nature Reserve, Beach and Formby Golf Club. The property has been cleverly re-designed by the present owners and offers the discerning buyer opulent accommodation which includes a sophisticated lighting, sound, TV and security system, together with a bespoke staircase designed by ‘Carville Cabinatory’. The ground floor consists of: Reception hall, cloakroom and separate w.c., spacious entertaining room, dining room, sitting room/snug, superb breakfast kitchen, family room, laundry room. To the 1st floor is the master suite with a magnificent en-suite shower room and luxury dressing room, there are 3 further double bedrooms and 3 en-suites. Outside there is a double width garage. Interior inspection, by appointment, is recommended of this stunning home.

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19/05/2010 12:42

Tucked away on Freshfield’s College Avenue, a secluded road guarded by trees and high fences, lies a hidden gem, discovers Natasha Young.  53 perfect balance.indd 2

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oth outside and in, Cartmel Lodge strikes a perfect balance between beautiful Victorian character and modern features, thanks to its owners Jayne and Mark Buchannan. When the couple moved into the six-bedroom property 11 years ago, they found many of its original qualities had been stripped away. They have since strived to return it to its former 19th century glory while also making some more up-to-date and practical adjustments along the way. “A lot had been taken out of the house like the fireplaces so we have restored the character, but it’s still got to be a home,” Mark tells Gr8 Life. “We’ve made it practical with a brand new heating system, automated gates and double glazing, so it’s all mod cons within an old Victorian house. We didn’t want it to be cold and drafty.” The couple have successfully combined genuine period features with old-style details throughout the property, and it’s hard to believe some of them haven’t been there since the house was built in 1890. A Victorian lamp post alongside the driveway in the front garden adds a charming touch of authenticity to the property, but it was actually installed by the couple themselves. Meanwhile, the stained glass window above the solid wooden front door, the modern yet traditional-looking range oven and the 100-year-old fireplace in the front room - which the couple searched for, installed and converted to gas after the original fireplace had been removed - show a ‘less is more’ approach has been taken when adding character to the house. As refurbishments were made, original features were also uncovered. A wooden surround on the bath in the guests’ en suite was removed, unveiling a genuine Victorian freestanding bath. The neutral décor throughout the building suits the couple’s “simple, clean cut and homely” taste, but is also in keeping with the traditional style. Blue tiles in the kitchen add a subtle splash of colour, and the red walls in the front living room create a warm and cosy environment, perfect for relaxing in during the evenings, but the creamy shades across much of the house, teamed with large windows, keep the property looking light and airy. Jayne says: “We love it because it’s a bright house. Even on a dull day it’s still so bright.” 54 perfect balance.indd 3

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A large, spacious ground floor living room at the back of the house, also known as the “play room” to the couple and their two children, is the family’s favourite part of the property, and it’s easy to see why. A wall of windows at the end of the room allows daylight to fill the space, as well as overlooking the simple yet stunning back garden. A log burning fire also ensures the room is enjoyable with or without the sun shining, and a set of glass doors leading through to the front living room can be opened up, providing a perfect place to entertain. Numerous storage areas make it easy to maintain the property’s simplistic style. Unsightly kitchen appliances are hidden away in the utility room, and built-in wardrobes which light up when the doors open provide plenty of space in the master bedroom, and are “great when you’re rushing round in the mornings or trying to find things in the dark”. Outhouses in the back garden, alongside a coal shed, are ideal for storing garden tools and furniture or children’s outdoor toys. A double garage at the side of the house was added by the couple and provides a secure place for vehicles, and indefinite planning permission remains in place for another extension to be built at the site. But it’s more than just the bricks and mortar that make this home what it is. With its extensive gardens and quiet surroundings, together with its prime location, the family have enjoyed the best of both worlds. “With no traffic on the road outside you feel like you’re in the countryside but the shops are just five minutes away,” says Jayne. “It’s so central for everything. I take the dog to the beach most days and Formby Village is nearby, plus it’s handy for schools.” ■ 55 perfect balance.indd 4

19/05/2010 12:45


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Not So Odd Afterall


ou’re promised a warm welcome if you visit a meeting of the Ormskirk and Southport District branch of the Oddfellows Society.

The local organisation is part of one of the

biggest and oldest friendly societies operating in this country and is celebrating its 200th birthday this year. It aims to enable its members to get the most out of life, and offers a varied social calendar. Those who join also can access other benefits including a Care Service.

Ann Ward, John Ward, Malcolm Gibbons, Isobel Ashcroft, Judith Catton and Keith Ashcroft

Judith Catton, the events organiser of the Ormskirk and Southport District branch, explains

The Ormskirk and Southport Oddfellows are this year celebrating their 200th birthday. Henry James pays them a visit to find out how far they’ve come.

the ethos of the Oddfellows Society: “In a nutshell the organisation provides care and friendship for its members. It also organises social activities for them. “Before the introduction of the welfare state it had a lot of members. You paid into the society, then if you had sickness or hardship you would receive money in the form of benefits. “Today there is a bigger focus on the social benefits of being a member.” Members from the Ormskirk and District branch of the group have been marking the bicentenary of the society with a number of different activities. These have included a Bicentennial Exhibition at the Botanic Gardens Museum in Churchtown, which

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ran from the middle of April to May. There is also a Mersey River Cruise planned for July. It is thought the group originated in the small towns and villages where there were not enough fellows (people of the same trade) to create a dedicated Trade Guild. So the Oddfellows - who worked in a number of different trades - grouped together to form the society. The Ormskirk and Southport branch of the group has members who are young and old. “People of all ages join the society, both male and female,” Judith says. “We have couples and singletons. It is a great place to join if you find that you are on your own because we do make you feel welcome. “A total of 700 people in Ormskirk and Southport pay membership to the group and about 150 of them are active and come on dinners and day trips.” There is always something going on at the Oddfellows Society and they meet two to three times a month. They hold a coffee morning on the first Wednesday of the month at 10.30am in the Edinburgh Woollen Mill Coffee Shop in Southport. Judith adds: “We are meeting constantly and it is a case of picking and choosing what you want to do. There is a full programme of events. People just have to look at the social diary and see what is on next. “We meet for dinners and talks throughout the year. There are a number of events, such as the mechanical pig racing where people can have a bet on which pig is going to win. We also have quizzes and are given a wide variety of talks. There is lots to do, some events are during the day and some are in the evening.” As well as taking part in social events, members of the Oddfellows are also involved in fundraising for both local and national charities. The group has raised money for Southport Lifeboat and takes part in the Southport Charity Carnival every year. There is no catch in being involved in the Oddfellows, only a small annual subscription.

Here’s to another 200 years. 59 oddfellows.indd 2

19/05/2010 12:58


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Gymophobics has a caring approach Shaping up for summer is easier that makes every lady feel special”. than you could ever imagine with ADVERTISEMENT FEATURE Gymophobics unique 30 minute particularly good at lifting the Bust, What women use Gymophobics? workout. flattening the tummy, trimming Donna: “Basically women who don’t Since opening the first Gymophobics inches from the waist, hips and want to spend hours in the gym and in Lichfield just 3 years ago, more than thighs and firming flabby areas like the back of the arms”. want some TLC and attention while 5,000 women of all ages have achieved How easy is Gymophobics? they exercise. Our ladies range from 14 dramatic inch and weight loss. Donna: “Our specially designed years to 85 at Gymophobics and most How easy is Gymophobics? With ten centres open and many machines make exercise feel as if have never used a gym before. If you Donna: you“Our specially designed more scheduled for this year, are pushing or pulling against a Shaping up for summer is easier the We asked Gyma can be quite scary, with very cushion of air. Ladies love feel Hubbard unfit or overweight, conventional machines make exercise feel as if the youfact Gymophobics has become first Donna than you could ever imagine with (Gymophobics founder) to little attention and no emphasis on that there are no clanking weights, gym can be quite scary, with very little pushing or pulling against a port of call for 30 women hatetheir amazing success: explain Gymophobics unique minutewho results. At Gymophobics are however, no pounding treadmills or heartDonnafind “Ladiesattention love Gymophobics workout. and no emphasis on results. cushion air. Ladies loveclasses. the fact we are obsessed with results and itofstopping conventional health clubs and fitness In that just 30 veryGymophobics fast inch and Since opening the first because of theAt shows!” we are the whole body however there areminutes no clanking weights, no is them intimidating. Gymophobics in Lichfield just 3 weight loss, but there are many exercised – ideal for ladies with obsessed with results and it shows!” treadmills or heart stopping a years ago more than 5,000 other reasons for its popularity. Tell us about the resultspounding busy lifestyle! All visits are by Most women find Gyms women of all ages have achieved fitness In justso30there minutes the Donna: “Most women lose a dressclasses. We asked Donna appointment is no waiting intimidating, so I have made dramatic inch andHubbard weight loss. size in the first few weeks and gobody around at Gymophobics either”. Tell us about the results whole is exercised Ideal for (Gymophobics With ten centres open and many Gymophobics a friendly, social on to achieve the ideal weight and Donna: “Most lose a dress with a busy lifestyle! All visits to and explain all female environment. Most women more scheduled founder) for this year, measurements for theirladies height Gyms are verysize impersonal, but few weeks and go on to Is it expensive? Gymophobics hastheir become the success: in the first are by appointment so there are no amazing Gymophobics has a caring first port of call for Donna: women who Courses less than achieve the ideal weight and waiting “With around at averaging Gymophobics “Ladies love approach that makes every lady hate conventional health clubs £28 per month we are less than half measurements for their height and either”. the cost of most Health Clubs and Gymophobics feel because special”. and find them intimidating. frame size. Each programme is focused of the very fast inch saving £55.00 on Enrolment during What women use Easter fortnight there has never on the clients goals so inch loss is Is it expensive? and weight loss, but Gymophobics? a better time to get started”. always from the problem areas. Our Coursesbeen average from just £29 per there are many other reasonsDonna: for its “Basically, women who To arrange a Guest Visit to find don’t want to programme spend hours in is the particularly good at month. out more give Donna and her popularity. gym and want some TLC and the bust,Our flattening the tummy, Most women find Gyms intimidating, team a call on 01785 250001. attention whilelifting they exercise. trimming inches waist, hips programme To arrange a Guest Visit to find out range from 14 years to 85 atfrom so I have made Gymophobics a ladies friendly, andthe frame size. Each is Save £55 on Gymophobics and and most haveand neverfirming thighs flabby areas social and all female environment. focused on the client’s more goals give so Jenny and her team a call used a Gym before. If you feel inch loss is always from the Enrolment during • Donna like the back of the arms”. on 01704 505072 Most gyms are very impersonal, butoverweight, unfit or a conventional



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Centres throughout the UK

1088284 gymophobics.indd 1


17-19 Greyfriars, Stafford 138 Bispham Road, Southport

19/05/2010 13:43

The year of 1963 saw President Kennedy assassinated, The Beatles release their debut album and the Great train robbery. It was also the year that three of the country’s most influential men graduated from St Mary’s College in Sefton. Gr8 Life puts the spotlight of success on these three gents.

President Richard Nixon which were the subject of the 2008 film, Frost/Nixon. Later he became Director of Programmes at LWT before joining the BBC as Deputy Director General and Director of News. He went on to spend eight years in the top job of DirectorGeneral of the corporation where he was awarded a knighthood and then a life peerage. He took his seat in the Lord John Birt with St Mary’s Principal Mike Kennedy (left) and Friends Chair Tony Bradshaw

House of Lords in 2000 and was




fter leaving St Mary’s in

as a personal advisor to Prime

1963 John Birt went on

Minister Tony Blair.

to study engineering at

Lord Brit recently re-visited

Oxford before joining Granada

the area for St Mary’s annual

TV and then London Weekend


Television (LWT) where he was

well-received speech, he spoke

Head of Current Affairs.

about his own humble origins





In the mid 1970s he produced

in Bootle and also about the

David Frost’s famous interviews

values that St Mary’s College had


instilled in him.



US 64

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19/05/2010 13:57

Archbishop Nichols recently held a mass at the Liverpool Catholic Cathedral


ir Ivor Roberts is former British Ambassador to Yugoslavia, Ireland and Italy and current President of Trinity College, Oxford.

Sir Ivor, who also graduated from the

school in 1963 was a VIP guest at a recent prize day ceremony at St Mary’s . In his speech, Sir Ivor spoke about the


incent Nichols was recently appointed Archbishop of Westminster. Crosby born, Archbishop Nichols

responsibility that each of the students should

was one of eight pupils in his year who joined

be willing to take on in life, and the need for

the priesthood or other holy orders on leaving St Mary’s in 1963. The current Principal of St Mary’s, Michael Kennedy, says: “Everyone at the school would like to congratulate Archbishop Nichols on his appointment. “It’s obviously a huge honour for St Mary’s for one of our former pupils to occupy such a senior position. “Looking back at our records for what seems to have been a ‘vintage year’ for the school, it’s clear that the young Vincent Nichols was a very gifted pupil and regular prizewinner.

St Mary’s Head Boy Timothy Old, new Chair of Governors John Sankey, Sir Ivor Roberts, School Chaplain Father Patrick Harnett, Principal Mike Kennedy, retiring Chair of Governors Harry Hitchen and Head Girl Alexandra Formela.

“The Archbishop has maintained his links courage to keep trying, in spite of failures.

with St Mary’s and was the VIP guest at our

He also referred to his personal experience

annual prize day ceremony several years

of helping to bring sides together in the

ago. We look forward to the opportunity to

Balkans and in Northern Ireland with the

welcome him back to the school in his new role

Good Friday Agreement.

in the future.”

St Mary’s College Principal, Michael Kennedy, says: “Archbishop Nichols, Lord Birt and Sir Ivor Roberts have all achieved remarkable success in their chosen careers and brought great credit to the college along the way. “Thanks to their achievements, and those of other former students like poet Roger McGough, broadcasters Laurie Taylor and Will Hanrahan, comedian Tom O’Connor, TUC Leader Brendan Barber and renowned linguist Professor David Crystal, St. Mary’s has made a significant impact on many areas of British life.” 65 spotlight.indd 2

19/05/2010 13:58

Streatham House School An independent school in Blundellsands, founded in 1925, educating Girls aged 2-16yrs and Boys aged 2-11yrs.

Art Exhibition & Open Evening Tuesday 22nd June

CONTACT 01695 622794


19th & 20th JUNE 2010






Up Holland · Sat & Sun · 10am-4pm


For further information and a prospectus please contact the Secretary, by phone: 0151 924 1514 or email: Victoria Road West, Blundellsands, Merseyside L23 8UQ

24th & 25th July 2010


537777 1085571 All Whites.indd



Southport Dress Agency

• Outdoor sports displays • Exhibitions & Competitions • Live Music • Art & Photography • Local Wildlife Coronation Park · Ormskirk A DM ISSION

P66.indd 1

Contact 01695 570258 (M) 07824 625321 1087756

1087756 SDA.indd 12

Sunday 1st August 2010



WE ALSO STOCK casual wear, prom dresses and ballgowns as well as bags, shoes, hats, fascinators and jewellery. All items are nearly new at a fraction of the original cost! Monday: Closed • Tuesday-Friday: 10.00am-4.30pm Saturday: 10.00am-5.00pm



Fabulous range of mother of the bride and wedding guest outfits always in stock, including Frank Usher, Condici, Jacques Vert and many more. We have new stock arriving daily!

82 Bispham Road, Southport • Telephone: 01704 214128




CONTACT 01695 622794


For more information on these events visit

19/05/2010 13:48 19/05/2010 13:55

What’s On? Chapel Gallery, Ormskirk

Southport Little Theatre



01695 571328 2 4 5 Unil 5th 12 - July 21

Monster Mash Up Fun with Felt LACi New Creators Recollection I’ve grown up with it

9-12 The Hot Mikado, Maghull Musical Theatre Company 20 The Hollow, Waterloo & Crosby Theatre Company



3-10 Cole Porter’s Anything Goes, Southport Am Operatic Society

Until 24th LACi New Creators 31 until Sept 22 West Lancashire Open Exhibition 2010

Southport Theatre 0844 847 2380 JUNE 5

12 25


1 2 8 9-10 17-18 24 31

Elvis On Tour Featuring Lee ‘Memphis’ King Magic - A Kind of Queen Buddy Holly & The Cricketers

15 20 21 24 30

Southport Melodic Jazz

The Royal Clifton Hotel 01704 541790 SUNDAY JUNE 20

Jazz on Midsummer Weekend A whole day ‘minifest’ of jazz

SUNDAY AUGUST 22ND The Alan Benzie Trio

Roy Chubby Brown Dolly - The Show First Steps A Day in The Life Peppa Pig’s Party In The Spotlight - Songs from the Musicals That’ll Be The Day 25th Anniversary Show


‘Swingshift’ Big Band - Musical Director Phil Shotton - guest soloist Mark Nightingale (trombone)

SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 19TH The Clark Tracey Quartet


01704 530521

Paul Jones and Digby Fairweather’s Half Dozen Solid Gold Country Legends Dominic Kirwan Reach Out to Motown Houghton Weavers Postman Pat  67

whatson.indd 2

19/05/2010 14:03

Liverpool Empire

Liverpool Royal Court

0844 847 2525 JUNE 8 - 12 18 20 21-26

29 - July 17


20-21 25

0870 787 1866

The Hobbit Jane McDonald in concert One Night Only Strictly Come Dancing The Professionals Chitty Chitty Bang Bang


Until 26th


1-9 Night Collar 16 - August 7 Council Depot Blues

Other events

The Gruffalo Motown’s Greatest Hits How Sweet It Is


5-7 9-14 17 - Sept 4


North Entrance, William Brown Street, Liverpool, L1 1JJ Friday 18th - Sunday 20th June 2010 Tickets £13.00 (Stalls and Curved Seating) and £11.50 (Balcony) 0844 8000 400 For more information visit

Fame The Musical Spamalot Hairspray


Brick Up - The Wirral Strikes Back

Liverpool Everyman & Playhouse 0151 709 4776 JUNE 16-19

17 - July 11 22-26

Ladies Night

The Man from Stratford: Being Shakespeare The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists Small Worlds

IN THE NIGHT GARDEN LIVE Sefton Park, Aigburth Liverpool L17 1AP

Saturday 17 July - Sunday 1 August 2010 Performance times: 9.30, 11.15 am, 2, 3.45 & 5.30 pm Tickets: £5 - £20 Running time: approx. 60 minutes To book tickets visit or call 0844 581 1251

Crosby Civic Hall THE SNOW QUEEN

Saturday 12 June, 11am & 1.30pm Tickets: £5.50 01704 540011 / 0151 928 1919

Crosby Civic Hall CARA DILLON

Thursday 24 June, 8pm Tickets: £16 (£14 concessions) 01704 540011 / 0151 928 1919

Formby Point Outdoor Theatre A MIDSUMMER’S NIGHT DREAM Saturday 3 July, 1.30pm Tickets: £5.50 01704 540011 / 0151 928 1919

Crosby Civic Hall KILLER - THE JERRY LEE LEWIS STORY Saturday 31 July, 7.30pm Tickets: £13 01704 540011 / 0151 928 1919

68 whatson.indd 3

19/05/2010 14:03

What’s On? Princess Diana Gardens, Southport PIG

Saturday 14 August, 10am -2pm & 2pm - 4pm 10 minute shows throughout Tickets: £5 01704 540011 / 0151 928 1919

Do you have an event you would like to publicise in our What’s On section? We are now gathering listings for our autumn edition, and are taking events going on from June to September 2010. Email your events to

Christ Church, Lord Street, Southport WIND IN THE WILLOWS Saturday 21 August, 11.30am Tickets: £5.50 01704 540011 / 0151 928 1919

Crosby Civic Hall HOW THE KOALA LEARNT TO HUG Saturday 21 August, 2.30pm Tickets: £5.50 01704 540011 / 0151 928 1919

Crosby Civic Hall LOS PACAMINOS FEATURING PAUL YOUNG Saturday 28 August, 8pm Tickets: £14 (£12 concessions) 01704 540011 / 0151 928 1919

Competition To celebrate the world premiere of In The Night Garden Live, Gr8 Life Magazine has teamed up with 08 Card and the show’s producers to offer one lucky reader a family ticket (for 4 people, minimum 1 adult) to the event in Sefton Park, running from July 17 to August 1. This is the first time that children and parents will be able to see the iconic In the Night Garden and its much loved characters Igglepiggle, Upsy Daisy and Makka Pakka in a live event. To be in with a chance of winning the family ticket, just answer the following question. In In The Night Garden, What colour is Igglepiggle’s blanket? Send your answer on the back of a post card to Gr8 Life Magazine, In The Night Garden Competition, 166 Lord Street, Southport, PR9 0QA or email Be sure to include your name, full address and daytime telephone number. Closing date for entries is 12 July at midday.

69 whatson.indd 4

19/05/2010 14:03


15% OFF new summer styles James Lakeland Peruzzi Fee G Passport Bandolera Robell Pomodoro

plus many more


Shop online at


01704 537555 • 22 Union Street, Southport PR9 0QE






SUMMER COLLECTION NOW IN STORE Marc Cain Store 92-96 Lord Street Southport PR8 1JR 01704 513294 OPEN Monday to Saturday 9.30am - 5.30pm Sunday 12 noon - 5pm • Other times by appointment

P70.indd 1

19/05/2010 14:05


Birkdale High Ball


ore than £4,000 was raised at a ball held by the PTA of Birkdale High School.

The event at Formby Hall was a great

success, with the evening sun shining. Chair of the PTA, Sandra Benson, tells

Karen Taylor and Noel Rimmer

Lee Dumbell and Anita Warnock

Gr8 Life: “Everyone looked lovely, and I have to say a big thank you on behalf of the association to all local businesses who supported us in raffle prizes and donations.” Money raised will go to the future development of Birkdale High School. Alison and Gary Loveridge, Karen and Phil Burke

Sarah Groves and Sandra Henney

Gail and Jim Fowler

Christine and Dave Matthews

Nicola Copeman, Bob Marshall, Sylvia Marshall.

Gill Gaskell, Sara Windsor, Sian Wooley and Paula Cunliffe

Jayne Norbury and Zandra Benson

71 Society - birkdale high.indd 1

19/05/2010 14:06


Traditional celebration


he Southport Royal Signals enjoyed a festive evening on April 23 sat their annual St

The ladies of the Royal Signals

George’s Day dinner.

Held at the Prince of Wales Hotel, the Signals

gathered for a Champagne reception before sitting down to dinner. One of the organisers of the event, Jim Johnson tells Gr8 Life: “As usual it went wonderfully, and I think it gets better every year. “President Alex Littlejohn made a very eloquent speech. Everyone had a great time and we look forward to next St George’s Day.”

The gents of the Royal Signals

Alan and Jean Mawson, Par Larkin with Brenda and Carl Thomson Royal Signals president Alex Littlejohn, Jackie Littlejohn and Samran Chanthongnai with Treasurer Royston T Mallabone

Brian and Patricia Grundy with Marion and Jim Johnson

Tom Thompson, Terry Ashcroft, David Burns, Paul Ashcroft and Ian Thomson

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19/05/2010 14:07


Roaring 20s D

obbies Garden World hosted a 1920’s Champagne High Tea event in April. Guests were invited to enjoy high tea and pay the small fee it would

have cost in the roaring 20’s. Every two guests received a champagne high tea worth £30 and paid only £1, which works out as the 1920’s value. All ticket fees were donated to Sefton Children’s Trust.

Flapper model Emma enjoys a glass of Champagne

Ladies from Banks WI enjoy afternoon tea 1920s style

Tony and Felicity Emmett

Bob and Alex Kennaugh

Rita and Ron Lofthouse

Jacqui Wells, Ros Taylor, Flo Freeman, Susan Harwood

Ken and Brenda Eddy

Sing Swing with Ken Eddy

Tea Room staff at Dobbies Garden World

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19/05/2010 14:08


Crowd pleasing evening


great time was had by all

Andrew Wall and Tom Howie

Tommy Docherty and organiser Peter Wall

Charles Morris with John, Alan and Nick Porter

Ken Spencer and Dave Hughes

between various local charities.

Steve Grainger with his son Paul

Kevin Collins, Eric Bulcock and John O’Reilly

Jamie Smith and Collin Walsh

Dave and Graham Flynn

Richard Caddick and Harold Anderson

at a recent sportsman’s dinner in Southport.

The evening, held at the Masonic

Hall, saw special guest former football manager Tommy Docherty. Guests enjoyed drinks before sitting down to eat, followed by a speech and question and answer session with Tommy. Organiser, Peter Wall of the Southport Victoria Lodge, says: “We were really pleased with how the event went. Tommy was fantastic and really kept the crowd entertained.” Two




raised on the night and will be split

74 Society - tommy.indd 1

19/05/2010 14:09


Dazzling event T

Event Organisers Michelle Roberts and Lynn Sprigings

he ladies and gents looked their best

at the recent Medical Day Unit Ball in Southport.

The event, held at the town’s Floral Hall, raised

more than £7,000 for outdoor environmental spaces at the unit. Organiser Lynn Sprigings says: “The money Laura Gahan and Tommy Smart

Mandy Rothwell

will help create a beautiful, relaxing outdoor space, to enable our chemotherapy patients access to a peaceful haven while going through their treatments. “The evening was a great success and everyone enjoyed themselves and Michelle Roberts and myself would like to thank everyone who donated to this either via buying a ticket or donating a prize.”

All smiles

Norma Roberts, Sally Bankes and David Roberts

Irene and Gordon Caesar with Norma and David Roberts

Alison, Dennis, Kathleen and Sarah Sproson

Caroline Meehan and Laura Ball

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19/05/2010 14:11


Amazing evening Linda Ritson, Chloe Ritson and Carole Sheehan


dinner and fashion show was

Diana Craig and Brenda Kendick

held at Formby Hall in March to raise money for charity.

The event was organised by Pam

Walmsley, who is secretary and treasurer of the Southport Macmillan Cancer relief branch, and Val Martyn Beck, who is chair of the branch. Virginia Lee flaunted some fashions in Nora Hudson, Barbara Martin, Barbara Callaghan and Elva Tyrer

a fantastic runway show, and there was a raffle with fantastic prizes to be won. Pam tells Gr8Life: “It was a good evening and everyone appeared to enjoy it. The fashions were stunning and very different. “The raffle was amazing as many

Audry McKie, Sue Davidson and Jean Scott

Event organisers Pam Walmsley, secretary and treasurer and Val Martyn Beck, Chair of Southport Macmillan Cancer Relief

people brought prizes and vouchers so there were about 50 prizes. “

Stuart and Susan Lees with Mary and Paul Carr

Thelma Searl, Roy Godfrey and Joy Barnes

Emily Mills, Lynda Downey and Charlotte Mills

Pat Klein, Mary Lomax, Pat Jackson and Dorothy Liggins

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19/05/2010 14:12


Jan regales crowd


ORMER Liverpool Football

apple pie and cream. Jan Molby

Club ace Jan Molby hosted

then regaled the audience with

a Sportsman’s Dinner at the

tales from his playing days in the

Hightown Club in March. The


1980s, as well as offering some



invited to the event to talk about his life, both on and off the pitch.

food for thought on Liverpool’s current playing form. Shaun



The dinner was staged to raise

chairman, says: “Jan was superb

funds for both the cricket and

entertainment and the evening was

tennis sections of the Hightown

a great success. Both the tennis

Club and was a resounding success,

and cricket clubs at Hightown

netting over £1500.

are extremely grateful to Jan for

Members and guests tucked

helping us continue our work in

into one of the club’s famous

providing access to sport for the

hotpot suppers, with a dessert of

local community.”

Nick Gordon, Mike Murray, Paul Cox and Ray Moran

Peter McCormack, Jan Molby and Chris Scrine

Tennis Chairman Pete McCluskey, Jan Molby, Club Chairman Mike Lydon, President elect Chris Scrine and Cricket Chairman Shaun Vosloo

Sandra Jenkins and Mark Blower from Pro-Fit Studio, Crosby

Laurence Hallman, Chris McCormack and Daniel Purvis

Eric Gowling and Peter Costello

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19/05/2010 14:12


North West Cancer


lmost £1,000 was raised at a Ladies’ Lunch held by the Southport Branch of North West Cancer research recently.

Members and guests gathered at Southport’s

Scarisbrick Hotel for the event. A drinks reception was followed by lunch.

Joan Pettitt, Olive Cutts and Jackie Jaeger

Jean Cawley, Jan Maund and Jan Pownall

Margaret Jolley, Maggie Barr and Pat Swift

Sheila Fowler and Carole Owens

Angela Howarth and Loretta Gibson

Noreen Amos, Ann Porter, Susan Jones and Wendy Sage

Barbara Brady, Ann Bryan, Patricia Andrews and Betty Robinson

Karen Ewen and Marika Jenkins

North West cancer Research Ladies’ Lunch April 2010

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19/05/2010 14:14



Successful evening

women’s health evening held at Formby Hall Golf Resort and Spa recently was a great success.

The event, hosted by Abbey Sefton Hospital saw

£400 raised for the NSPCC and women were given the opportunity to brows various stands before talks were given. Chairman of the evening was Consultant Gynaecologist Ash Alam. He spoke as well as nutritionist Guy Edwards, orthopaedic surgeon

June Fowles and Peter Phillips

Peter Hughes and surgeon Collin Harris who spoke about weight loss surgery. Ann Jordan from Abbey Sefton says: “It was a great event and went very well indeed. “It’s good for women to receive information about their health from such a wide spectrum of experts.”

Consultant Gynaecologist Mr Ash Alam with Ladies from Southport and Ainsdale Golf Club

Sylvia Musgrove, Elsie Caine, Eva Shaw, Jane Gibson and Doreen Hughan

Wendy Clark, Hazel Jamson and Sylvia Challoner

Guest speaker Guy Edwards with Heather Southern, Maria Barrett and Carla Gwynne

Frances Franks, Joanne Malloy, Claire Latham and Deborah Hargreave

Representing the charity NSPCC are Paula Morris and Janette Drew

Guest speaker Colin Harris with Lynn Walton

79 Society - Abbey.indd 1

19/05/2010 14:16


Southport Soroptimist


outhport Soroptimist International recently held their 78th Charter and Change of Insignia Lunch at the Scarisbrick Hotel.

Soroptimists and guests enjoyed a drinks

reception followed by a three course meal. Gill Ribis then handed over her title to incoming President Carol Hill. In her speech Gill reflected that she had enjoyed her year especially all the social and fundraising activities that had taken place. She thanked all members for their unstinting support and wished Carol every success in her year

Incoming president Carol Hill with retiring president Gill Ribis

as President. Other speakers included Regional President Sryia Kulupana and Rotary President Dr. Peter Downham. Carol Cookson says: â&#x20AC;&#x153;The afternoon was a great success, the food was excellent and everyone enjoyed themselves.â&#x20AC;? Jenny Stanistreet and Shirley Smith

Helen and Ian Beecham

Guest Speaker Peter Downham of Southport Rotary Club with outgoing Soroptimist International of Southport president Gill Ribis and Roger Kiddle

Sandra Brookfield, Deidre Skinner and Margaret Davies

Les Byrom, Pam Boulderstone, Danuta Sobolewska and Janice Byrom

Mary Masheter, Maureen Spenley and Ann Porter

80 Society - soroptomists.indd 1

19/05/2010 14:17


High fashion M


Megan Johnson, Ruth Gillespie, Ashley Griffiths & Charlotte Rothwell

hit the catwalk in March at

The Vincent Hotel in Southport to showcase designs from the new

Spring/Summer ranges available at Coco Boutique. Over 130 fashion lovers turned up to watch the show and support the chosen charity - The Marina Dalglish Appeal. The ladies enjoyed a meal while they were entertained by singer Mark Lacey, followed by the fashion show. With over £2,000 raised on the evening all proceeds will help raise £5M towards a new £17M purpose built facility which will be situated next to The Walton Centre for Neurology and Neurosurgery

Natalie Silcock, Nicky Silcock, Pauline Silcock, Carol White, Chloe White & Carol Silcock

on land at University Hospital Aintree. Marina says: “What an amazing evening, we are so grateful to Coco Boutique for this fantastic fundraiser and it has shown that the women of Southport are as excited as we are at the charity about the new appeal which will be live changing for cancer patients in the region.” Marina Dalglish, Nicola Johnson, Dianne Whalley & Megan Johnson

Pictures by Diane Thompson

Megan Johnson & Nicola Silcock

Rachel Gillespie, Ashley Griffiths & Ruth Gillespie

Jessica Lewis models Missoni Lana Heath & Maxine Farnworth

81 Society - Fashion.indd 1

19/05/2010 14:18


Glamorous Dinner Suzanne Watson, Mark Pickett and Justine Roche.

Lidyah Nathan and Jacqueline Kirkham.

David Cairns, Ray Mann, Clare Cairns, Merchant Taylors’ Girls’ School Headmistress Louise Robinson and Margaret Mann.

Tracey and David Paxton.

Steven and Jen Roby and Alexis and Brian Wilson.

Mark and Amanda Rigby.

Priscila Minehan, Joy Beechey, John and Noeline Walkinshaw and Claire Burrows.

Nancy Artch-Rimmer, Gail Fletcher, Marie Clapham and Carol Hughes.

Susie Butler, Nicky Mansley, Diane Edwards and Joanne Powell

Kathryn and Howard Crossley, Kate Thomas, Mark Tipton, Rosemary and Mick Wilson.

Merchant Taylors’ Girls’ School Headmistress Louise Robinson with her husband Eddie.

Paul and Jackie Robinson with Head Boy and saxophonist Jack Roberts


erchant Taylors’ celebrated

the Merchant Taylors’ Sporting Start

Development and Marketing Michaela

the rites of spring with a

fundraising campaign, which supports

Riches said: “The event is not merely about

glamorous dinner dance in

both bursaries and capital projects across

raising funds but celebrating the strong

both Boys’ School and Girls’ School sites.

bonds of friendship that exist across our

the Floral Hall on Southport’s promenade. The Spring Ball raised £10,000 for






82 Society - merchants.indd 1

19/05/2010 14:19


L33 7XF

1087657 prestige.indd 1

19/05/2010 14:21

Caring For Our Community Locally

Care at Home…

There are many reasons why people require extra help at various times of their life Sometimes you may require some extra physical assistance, respite or live in care or simply some support with your everyday life. Community Care Direct can arrange for a kind caring person to come to your home and help you or a family member with any of the following tasks:

• • • • • • • • •

Complex care needs catered for Day and night sitting service We cater for adults aged 18 years onwards Personal Care Bathing Hairwashing Medication Management Domestic Duties Visits from half to full 24 hour care

We can also accompany you on visits to the Doctors, opticians or medical appointments. We try to sensitively match suitable carers with clients, and arrange a introductory meeting wherever possible before long term arrangements are put in place. Community Care Direct provide tailor made services that deliver the highest quality of health and social care, and are happy to discuss any care needs for yourself or a loved one. Registered with the Care Quality Commision All staff enhanced CRB checked

Community Care Direct Ltd. Office Address:


33 Shakespeare Street • Southport PR8 5AB T: 01704 544460 • M: 07967 041138 • F: 01704 539212 Email: •

1087656 ccd.indd 1

19/05/2010 14:22

Gr8 Life Magazine - Summer 2010  

The lifestyle magazine for the discerning residents of Sefton and West Lancashire

Gr8 Life Magazine - Summer 2010  

The lifestyle magazine for the discerning residents of Sefton and West Lancashire