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Feb/March Feb b/March 18 Issue 80

connection mag�ine Inside this issue... Book reviews Recipes What’s On Ess� Book Festival

Also...

Purging the plastic! Country Mutters Puzzles Gardening with Pippa Greenwood The Connection is delivered free to homes in Aldham, Fordham, Great Tey, Chappel, Wakes Colne, White Colne, Colne Engaine, Countess Cross, Pebmarsh, Earls Colne, Bures St Mary, Bures Hamlet, Mount Bures , Wormingford, West Bergholt, Eight Ash Green, Copford, Braiswick, Lexden, Coggeshall, Kelvedon and Feering. Also available in Halstead, Sudbury, Assington, Stoke by Nayland and Nayland.

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Hello

Inside

I hope your new year has got off to a good start. There’s signs already of daffodils and crocuses pushing through which is always reassuring during the remnants of winter. Having said that, I’m typing this with rain lashing down outside after a night of 70mph winds! Nevermind, it won’t be long now before Spring is here. If you watched David Attenborough’s Blue Planet II on the TV recently it will not have escaped your attention that our oceans and sealife are suffering terribly as a result of plastic finding its way into the sea. There has been lots of publicity lately on this controversial subject. It’s easy and understandable to think that we as individuals can’t make much of a difference, but of course, together, we can! Maybe you have already started by making changes in the home. Perhaps you’re organising a litterpick and need volunteers. Maybe you’re organising fund raising activities to help fund a poster campaign to raise awareness. On page 23 we have an article with some useful resources that might help get you started. If you need our help to get your message out there locally, please get in touch.

4 - Book reviews 6 - Cake and Bake 8 - Country Mutters 10 - Cajun Meatballs 12 - Crossword 14 - 19 What’s On 20 - Noticeboard 21 - Useful Numbers 22 - Codeword 23 - Purging the Plastic 24 - Sudoku 25 - Spot the Difference 25 - Puzzle solutions 26 - Gardening 30 - Index

I look forward to hearing from you.

Sarah

Editor and Publisher: Sarah Banks Editorial Assistant: Amanda Findley Contributors: Amanda Findley , Ann Haldon,Alison Runham, Tom Hughes and Pippa Greenwood. Photo credits: Eleanor Church and Seana Hughes Advertising and Editorial: 01787 210701 / 07527 489847 Email: editor@theconnectionmagazine.co.uk Address: Applegarth, Whitestreet Green, Boxford, Sudbury, Suffolk CO10 5JL All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in any retrieval systems or transmitted in any form - electronic, mechanical , photocopying, recording or otherwise - without the prior permission of the publisher.

Competition winner

£25 cash sudoku winner - A Ross from Coggeshall

Please get in touch if you want to advertise your business. Call me on:

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Into the New Year Books about awakenings and new beginnings to see you into 2018. The Power – Naomi Alderman Not a new release this one, but well worth a read if you missed it back in 2016. Teenage girls across the world discover they have the power to hurt, and even kill, with just their bare hands. And they have the ability to awaken that same power in other women. Now that men are the weak ones, how will the gender balance shift? An engaging read that twists modern day happenings and examines the dark side of power. Gripping, thought-provoking and a real conversation starter, The Power is ideal for book clubs.

How to be Champion: My Autobiography – Sarah Millican Sarah Millican’s autobiography is like a glorious ramble through her life. The book is split into chapters with headers such as ‘Things I’ve Been Bullied For’, ‘Why I’m Not A Criminal’ and ‘My Love Of Stationery’. It’s part autobiography and part selfhelp guide. Nothing is off limits, so it’s probably not the book for you if you’re not keen on swear words or reading about bodily functions. However, if you want a book that’ll make you feel good about yourself and is snort-your-tea-out-of-your-nosefunny, buy it now.

Me. You. A Diary – Dawn French This book combines writing your own diary with taking a peek into Dawn French’s. She shares her thoughts each month, along with various insights into her life, and invites you to do the same. The idea is that, by the end of the year, you’ll have a ‘fatter, scruffier book that is written by me but totally personalised by you.’ With various writing prompts, this book makes keeping a diary altogether easier. The perfect start to the new year.

History of Wolves – Emily Fridlund 14 year old Linda lives in an ex-commune out in the woods. Lonely, socially-inexperienced and left to her own devices by her parents, Linda craves friends and a sense of belonging. When a new family moves nearby, she befriends the young mother and regularly babysits the four year old child. But she soon discovers that all is not right. The choices Linda has to make to keep her new found family could have tragic consequences. Compelling reading.

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The Art of Hiding – Amanda Prowse Nina seems to have the perfect life, but it soon starts to unravel when her husband is killed in a car crash. Left with two children to care for, a mountain of debt, and the growing realisation that her husband wasn’t all he seemed, Nina has to fight to rebuild a life for herself and her family. An enjoyable easy read – perfect for long winter’s nights. Mrs Osmond – John Banville Banville picks up the story of Isabel Osmond (née Archer) from where we left her in the classic The Portrait of a Lady. While this novel will likely appeal most to fans of Henry James’s work, Banville retells enough of the original story for Mrs Osmond to work as a stand-alone piece. Upon learning of her husband’s betrayal, Isabel has journeyed to London, leaving him behind in Italy. Away from her husband and reunited with her friends, Isabel starts to rediscover her desire for independence. Lively characters, elegant prose and engaging dialogue combine to make this a very enjoyable read.

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Recipes

The Perfect Classic Pancake Banana and Walnut Loaf Ingredients: • 175g unsalted butter, softened • 175g light soft brown sugar • 225g self-raising flour • 2 tsp ground mixed spice • ½ tsp baking powder • 3 medium eggs • 75g walnut halves, roughly chopped • 2 large ripe bananas, peeled and mashed with 2 tsp lemon juice • Icing sugar, to dust

Makes 10 Slices Ready in 1 hour 45 minutes, plus cooling time

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Preheat the oven to 170C, Fan 150C, Gas 3. Grease and line the base and the two long sides of a 900g loaf tin with baking paper. Place the butter, sugar, flour, spice, baking powder and eggs in a large bowl and beat with an electric whisk until thoroughly combined - this will take about 4-5 minutes. Fold in the walnuts and mashed bananas. Spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and level the surface. Bake for 1 hour - 1 hour 15 minutes until risen and golden and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin for 10 minutes then turn out onto a cooling rack and cool completely. Dust thickly with icing sugar. Add a creamy soft frosting instead of the dusting of icing sugar, if liked. Simply beat 100g full-fat soft cheese with 100g very soft. unsalted butter until smooth, then beat in 100g sifted icing sugar.

Makes 8 - Ready in 30 minutes plus standing time • 100g plain flour • Pinch of salt • 1 large egg • 300ml milk (or milk and water mixed) • Sunflower oil or unsalted butter, for frying Sift the flour into a large bowl, add the salt and make a well in the centre. Add the egg and beat with a balloon whisk, gradually drawing in some of the flour. Slowly pour in the milk, whisking all the time and drawing in the rest of the flour, until you have a smooth batter which is about the consistency of single cream. Stand the batter for about 30 minutes to allow the starch grains in the flour to soften and expand –this will give a lighter pancake. If the batter has thickened slightly then just whisk in a splash of milk. Heat a little sunflower oil or a knob of butter in a non-stick shallow frying pan (about 20cm diameter)until almost smoking then quickly ladle in enough of the batter to thinly cover the base of the pan, swirling the pan to give an even layer. Cook for 1-2 minutes until small air bubbles appear in the pancake then flip it over and cook for a further minute until golden. Repeat with the rest of the mixture, serving the pancakes as they are cooked or interleaving with baking paper and keeping warm in a low oven.

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Country Mutters

The Agony and the Ecstasy By Lady Muck I met up with one of my friends recently over coffee at a new eco-chic café. Perched gingerly on a chair made out of recycled car parts, my friend looked in a pensive frame of mind. Inspired by the arrival of the new year, she told me she is thinking about downsizing from her 4 bed des res to a more manageable 2 bed bungalow. Something near the shops with a nice garden. I responded favourably to the idea, thinking that it would also futureproof her from ever falling down the stairs, either from infirmity or (quite frankly more likely in her case), from one too many glasses of fizz. So why the glum face, I enquire, after listening to this news? It seems her only child, her pride and joy, the centre of her existence, is not keen on the idea. The move will mean that her grandchildren will not now be able to have their own second bedrooms at my friend’s house, which will impact on the amount of babysitting she will be able to do. I wondered at the woman and her inability to see what everyone else has known for years, namely that her beloved child has always been a perfect pill with a penchant for making unreasonable demands. The only thing that has changed over the decades is the nature of the demands, being less for fluffy puppies and fairy wings and more for cashmere and claret. My friend loves her grandchildren dearly but, I suggested, perhaps now is the time to take a good long look at them. I asked her a series of straightforward questions. Are they a tiny

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bit of a handful? Do they smash your best china and lay waste your carefully cultivated delphiniums? Do they clutter up your home with a flotsam and jetsam of garishly coloured plastic? Do they drive you quite mad with their incessant questions? Do you in fact, dread their arrival and toast their departure? She spluttered a bit at that last one, but I could see I had touched a nerve. I suspect part of the reason for downsizing is that my friend will no longer be able to provide them with a second home while her daughter lies prone with cucumber slices over her eyes at spa breaks or indeed at Prosecco festivals (just without the cucumber slices). So I advised her to sell the house and dispose of any spare cash in as dissolute and frivolous a manner as she chooses. She could take a villa on the Cote d’Azur, find a toy boy on Date a Cougar.com or max out her credit card on Bond St - whatever takes her fancy. And, warming to the theme, I pointed out that if she develops a taste for Absinthe along the way, why worry? At your time of life, I said, debt is not a problem – the banks can’t touch you once you’re dead! Shortly after this advice, my friend suddenly remembered she had to leave, although she just had time to comment in a pointed manner that perhaps I should consider a new career as an Agony Aunt. Now there’s an idea! New year, new career ….?

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Cajun Meatballs

with Herb & Tomato Couscous

Serves 4

Ready in 45 minutes

Mince always makes a great speedy supper – here lean pork mince is spiced up with Cajun seasoning and rolled into meatballs.

FOR THE MEATBALLS • 450g lean minced pork • ½ red onion, peeled and finely chopped • 1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed • 25g fresh white breadcrumbs • 2 tsp Cajun seasoning (see TIP) • Salt and freshly ground black pepper • 1 tbsp freshly chopped coriander • 1 tbsp sunflower oil FOR THE COUSCOUS • 225g couscous • ½ red onion, finely chopped • 8 sun-blush tomatoes, drained and chopped • 3 tbsp freshly chopped coriander • 2 tbsp olive oil

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To make the meatballs, place the pork, onion, garlic, breadcrumbs, Cajun seasoning and coriander in a food processor. Season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper and process for a few seconds until thoroughly mixed. Alternatively, mix well with clean hands. Shape the mixture into 24 meatballs. Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan and fry the meatballs for 10-15 minutes until browned and cooked through. Shake the pan frequently to turn the meatballs. Meanwhile, place the couscous in a large bowl and pour over enough boiling water to just cover the grains. Leave to soak for about 10 minutes until all the liquid has been absorbed. Separate the grains by stirring with a fork. Add the onion, tomatoes, coriander and olive oil and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Divide the hot couscous between four serving bowls. Thread the cooked meatballs onto metal skewers and serve on top of the couscous.

TIP Cajun seasoning is a spicy blend of

spices, chilli powder and herbs such as thyme and oregano. You’ll find it on the spice racks in the supermarket.

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General Knowledge Crossword Across 1. Clandestine (13) 7. Scrutinise accounts (5) 8. Machine that inserts metal fasteners into sheets of paper (7) 9. Sphere of vision (7) 10. Condensed but memorable saying (5) 12. Female member of a religious order (3) 14. Strong horse ridden into battle (7) 16. Novel, fresh (3) 20. Transmitting live from a studio (2,3) 21. Kitchen utensil used for spreading (7) 23. Distilled alcoholic beverages (7)

24. Gold block (5) 25. Very high narrow spikes on women’s shoes (8,5) Down 1. Shoes with wheels attached (6) 2. Blush, as if with shame (6) 3. Minor actor in crowd scenes (5) 4. Currant bun (7) 5. Container with a long nozzle to apply lubricant to machinery (6) 6. Surface on which pictures can be projected (6) 8. Pathological hardening or thickening of tissue (9) 11. Sticky tree sap (3) 13. Gaelic word

15. 16. 17. 18.

meaning a mountain peak (3) Brave woman (7) Sounds (6) Large North American deer (6) Small Australian

parakeet (abbr) (6) 19. Port city in western France on the Loire estuary (6) 22. American follower of the Mennonite religion (5) Solution on page 25

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What’s On General Murder Mystery Dinner

At Prested Hall Friday 23rd February 7.00pm – 11.00pm Come and enjoy delicious food, talented actors and a side order of spoofing with this wonderfully staged multiroom Murder Mystery dinner at Prested Hall. Always great fun! £40pp. Booking essential, call 01376 573300 now.

Ladies Night

At Prested Hall Friday 27th April 7.00pm – Midnight Ladies Night is back! Great food, prosecco, fun photo booth, butlers in the buff and dancing til midnight – it’s time to gather up your girlfriends and let your hair down. This is always a hugely popular evening. £40pp. Booking essential, call 01376 573300 now.

Nayland Horticultural Society Spring Show Saturday 24th March 10.00am At the Church Hall, Bear Street, Nayland.

Come along for coffee, cake, raffle and a friendly chat! Everyone is welcome to have a go at exhibiting daffodils and other Spring flowers. The schedule is available from Trevor Smy at 28 Harper’s Estate, Nayland CO6 4LB or call 01206 262022, email trevor. smy@gmail.com or www. naylandhortsoc.org.uk

Table Top Sale At Aldham Village Hall Saturday 17th February 10.30am Refreshments available, free entry. Anyone who would like their own stall, should contact Anne on 01206 211624 to book. Table and seating provided. Cost of table is £5: hirers are advised to book as soon as possible, as table space is taken up very quickly.

Nayland Horticultural Society’s AGM At the Church Hall, Bear Street, Nayland Tuesday 17th April 7.30pm for 8.00pm Coffee, a raffle and a Fun Quiz with a horticultural twist to test your gardening knowledge and win a prize! Come along and meet other like-minded, green-fingered folks. Single membership is £3 per annum, joint £5. For further details contact call 01206 262022, email trevor.smy@ gmail.com or visit www. naylandhortsoc.org.uk

Fellowship Meetings At the United Reformed Church, Kelvedon. Thursday 11th January and Thursday 8th February 2.00pm - 3.30pm

Music Music Events at The Mercury Theatre, Colchester Tuesday 6th February 7.30pm The Endellion Quartet

Come and join us in the main hall for chair based exercise (January) and old fashioned games (February) followed by tea and coffee and a time to chat. Everyone welcome. Free of charge.

An engaging programme with a trademark Roman River Music surprise woven in to launch their 2018 concert series at the Mercury. Works from Beethoven, Mozart, Webern and Tchaikovsky

For more information please call Gwyn Pegram on 07875 109472)

Wednesday 14th February 7.30pm Vivaldi by Candlelight

‘Nathan’s Extravaganza’ Charity Dinner and Dance

Attired in lavish period costume, performing in front of a stunning classical set, The Locrian Ensemble perform Vivaldi’s Four Seasons. Other works include the virtuoso Concerto for Two Violins, the Rustic Symphony, and classics such as Pachelbel’s Canon, and Handel’s Arrival of the Queen of Sheba.

At Le Talbooth, Dedham, Colchester Friday 4th May 7.00pm - 1.00am The night starts with predinner drinks and canapés, followed by an exquisite 2 course Barbecue dinner, live auction, raffle and dancing into the early hours. Tickets available now at an early bird offer of £55.00 per person (tables of 10) till 28th February. Thereafter the price will be £60.00. All monies raised goes directly to The J’s Hospice, The Sick Children’s Trust and David Randall Foundation. All these charities have helped and supported the Cain family (who are local to Colchester) with their son Nathan. If you would like to buy tickets, make a donation or donate a prize, please contact Suzan at nathan. extravaganza@gmail.com

Saturday 17th February 7.30pm Frankie’s Guys A celebration of Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons, this is a fast paced, energetic production with an authentic live concert feel. Slick choreography, charm, charisma, brilliant audience participation, amazing live vocals and a great live band. For more information and to book please visit www. mercurytheatre.co.uk or call 01206 573948.

What’s On continued over page


What’s On Colchester Organ Society At Thomas Lord Audley School, Monkwick Avenue, Colchester CO2 8NJ. On the first Friday of each month 7.45pm - 10.15pm Live keyboard concerts with music to suit all tastes, featuring top musicians from around the country. Friday 2nd February Phil Brown Friday 2nd March Rod Pooley £4 members, £6 non members. Refreshments and raffle. Ample parking inside school grounds. Free one off entry for two non members upon production of this advert. For more information please contact Alan Pilgrim on 01787 269458 or email alanwpilgrim@tiscali.co.uk

Something to Celebrate Concert At St. Botolphs, Colchester CO2 7EE (plenty of parking in Britannia car park next door - CO2 7EF) Sunday 4th February 3.00pm An afternoon Charity Celebration in words and music suitable for all ages, performed by singers, school choir, school dancers, saxophone, accordion, guitar, flute, keyboard, plus fun and serious poems and readings by creative writers. Compered by Liz Mullen, Forces Radio, BFBS. In aid of CoHoC - Colchester Cancer Centre Campaign. Tickets £7 adults, £12

Family (2A+3C) available from Mann’s Music, Colchester High Street, by tel: 01206 572783, by email: iangdewis@gmail. com and on the door.

Sunjay in concert At Colchester Arts Centre, Church St. Colchester Monday 5th February 7.45pm. Drawing from a rich, musical and cultural background, Sunjay has quickly become recognised as one of the UK’s rising stars. His performances have been described as“mature and confident”, while his guitar playing has been hailed as“superb, brilliant, experienced, intricate & faultless”. Sunjay’s style has that natural drift between folk and blues. Winner of the Wath Festival Young Performers Award, he also made the final selection for the BBC’s Young Folk Award in 2012 and was also recognised by the 2014 British Blues Awards. For more information and to book tickets please call 01206 500900 or visit www. colchesterartscentre.com

Colchester Symphony Orchestra Bruckner Symphony no. 8 At St Botolph’s Church, Colchester Saturday 24th February 7.30pm Come and enjoy the greatest of the Bruckner symphonies and one of the great romantic symphonies of all time. After Bruckner’s 8th Symphony there will be a social event when

members of the audience will be encouraged to meet members of the orchestra. Tickets are £15, £13 (concessions) £3 (students). Under 17s are admitted free to all our concerts. Tickets are available on the door or may be reserved in advance by ‘phoning 01206 271128. Please see www. colchestersymphonyorchestra. org.uk or www.facebook.com/ colchestersymphonyorchestra for further information.

Rock Choir Concert At Chappel and Wakes Colne Village Hall Sunday 18th February 2.30pm Tickets £5 adults, children aged 4 to 12 £2.50. Raffle, tea, coffee and light refreshments available on the day. Tickets obtainable from Chappel and Wakes Colne Village Post Office and Store, Jim Taylor 07771 622525, Christine Underwood 07949 510 523 or Patrick Dent 01787 220147. Ticket sales in advance only as limited space available. For further information please visit: www.essexinfo. net/chappel-and-wakescolne-village-hall

Drama and Dance Turn of the Screw At The Mercury Theatre, Colchester Friday 23rd February – Saturday 10th March 7.30pm A Made in Colchester production. A young governess agrees to

look after two orphaned children in Bly, a seemingly idyllic country house. But shortly after her arrival, she realises that they are not alone. There are others – the ghosts of Bly’s troubled past. This fresh, thrilling adaptation of Henry James’much-loved and genre defining classic ghost story lets you draw your own conclusions about the events at Bly and where guilt resides. Turn of the Screw is thought-provoking, moving and above all terrifying! Stylish, edge of your seat theatre. For more information and to book please visit www. mercurytheatre.co.uk or call 01206 573948.

Jack and the Beanstalk At The Institute, High Street, Kelvedon Friday 26th January 8.00pm, Saturday 27th January 2.30pm and 6.30pm, Sunday 28th January 4.30pm, Friday 2nd February 8.00pm, Saturday 3rd February 2.30pm and 8pm. Doors open half an hour before the start. Kelvedon Players are delighted to present one of the world’s favourite fairy tales! Written by Peter Denyer and directed by Charlotte French, the tale of Jack and the Beanstalk starts in the town of Merrydale, where our hero Jack and his mother Dame Trott, haven’t a bean to their name. This traditional panto will keep you on the edge of your seat with laughter and suspense. Oh yes it will!!


What’s On Tickets are £8 or £6 concessions (no concessions on last Saturday evening) and on sale at The Master Butcher, Kelvedon High Street or call 07742 532192 or online via www. kelvedonplayers.co.uk

The Orpen Players present “Sleeping Beauty”

At the Orpen Memorial Hall, West Bergholt Friday 26th, Saturday 27th January and Friday 2nd, Saturday 3rd February 7.30pm. Saturday matinee both Saturdays at 2.00pm. Doors open 30 minutes before curtain up. Tickets £7 adults, and £5 children, available by calling Roger on 01206 241048 now, and from Ash’s Store West Bergholt from Saturday 13th January.“Oh no they are not”.“Oh yes they are”! Make sure you join in the fun.

Cinema Leavenheath Village Hall Digital Cinema At Leavenheath Village Hall, Wrights Way, (signposted from the High Road)Doors open 7.00pm for 7.30pm start. Refreshments (wine, beer, soft drinks, tea and coffee) will be available before the film starts and during the interval. Tickets

£3.50 per adult and £2 per child. You can now reserve your seat online at www.leavenheath.org. uk or please call Lesley 01206 262505 or Ken 01206 263266 for tickets. Saturday 3rd February ‘Dunkirk’ (12A) The film depicts the dramatic and true story of the Dunkirk evacuations from a war torn beach and harbour in Belgium, following the seemingly doomed plight of allied soldiers in World War II. As the enemy forces close in it seems the troops have nowhere to go, but help is at hand and a fierce battle ensues. Saturday 3rd March ‘Victoria and Abdul’ (PG) Abdul Karim arrives from India to participate in Queen Victoria’s golden jubilee. As Victoria questions the constrictions of her long-held position, the two forge an unlikely and devoted alliance that her household and inner circle try to destroy. As their friendship deepens, the queen begins to see a changing world through new eyes, joyfully reclaiming her humanity.

Dedham Films At The Assembly Rooms, High St, Dedham Dedham films screens a monthly feature on the third Wednesday of each month, 7.00pm doors open, 7.30pm film begins. If there is a suitable break in the film, there is a 15 minute intermission for drinks at the bar and ice cream. There is open seating at all our

screenings, so get there early. Tickets are £4. There are usually a few tickets for sale at the door, but this cannot be guaranteed so please buy your tickets at the previous screening or as soon as you can from Shakespeare House Gallery, Dedham High Street or online at www. dedhamfilms.co.uk Wednesday 21st February ‘Victoria and Abdul’ (PG) Wednesday 21st March ‘Goodbye Christopher Robin’ (PG) A rare glimpse into the relationship between beloved children’s author A. A. Milne and his son Christopher Robin, whose toys inspired the magical world of Winnie the Pooh.

Essex Book Festival Events

£3 for 10 min private table poetry readings or tarot readings.

Are You Sitting Comfortably?

(11.00am – 12.00noon)

Troll Swap Fun! (2.00pm - 3.00pm)

At Firstsite, Colchester, Saturday 3rd March Join Leigh Hodgkinson for stories, giant drawings and fun crafts, with some storytelling in between. Free drop in.

The East Country Almanac Tales of Valley and Shore: Jules Pretty At Firstsite, Colchester,

Poetry Brothel At Three Wise Monkeys (Gin Bar Basement), 60 High Street, Colchester Thursday 1st March 7.30pm The oldest literary form meets the oldest profession in Britain’s oldest recorded town! Inspired by the cabarets of Montmartre, Poetry Brothel is a heady feast for the senses. Compered by madam Suki SilverTongue, there will be performances, private table readings, live music, fortune telling and more. £5 suggested donation on the door.

Saturday 3rd March 11.00am – 12.00 noon An assemblage of seventyfour tales, mixing memoir with natural history, cultural critique with spiritual reflection. Jules Pretty takes us on a journey through the timeless but ever-changing landscape of his own east country in Suffolk and Essex. Tickets £7 and £5 (27yrs and under). Book at 01206 713700 or www.firstsite.uk

What’s On continued over page


What’s On Sumi Ink Club: Peace Wall

under) from The Mercury on 01206 573948.

Writing the Place At Firstsite, Colchester Sunday 4th March 1.15pm

At Firstsite, Colchester, Saturday 3rd March 1.30pm – 4.30pm Everyone is invited to come along and create a community mural that will evolve and grow throughout the day on the theme of Peace, Place and Identity. Bring yourselves, bring your friends, bring your grandparents, come and draw with us. Free drop in.

The Silent Companions: Laura Purcell At Colchester Castle Sunday 4th March 11.30am Inspired by the work of Shirley Jackson and Susan Hill, and set in a crumbling country mansion, The Silent Companions is an unsettling gothic ghost story to send a shiver down the spine. A fantastic debut novel from Colchester based author Laura Purcell. Tickets £7, £5 (27 yrs and

With Syd Moore, Robin Brooks, Nicola Werenowska, chaired by Martin Bewick. A rare opportunity to hear three very different writers describe the process of conjuring landscape and place in their writing. Tickets £7 and £5 (27yrs and under). Book at 01206 713700 or www.firstsite.uk

Telling Stories of War and Peace: Liz Trenow At Firstsite, Colchester, Sunday 4th March 2.00pm – 4.00pm What are the joys and pitfalls of writing historical fiction, and why are war and peace such compelling topics for historical novelists? A participatory workshop with Liz Trenow, bestselling author of The Poppy Factory and her latest novel, In Love and War, published in January to mark the 100th anniversary of WW1. Tickets £20 and £15 (27yrs and under). Book at 01206 713700 or www.firstsite.uk

Talks and Workshops Nayland Horticultural Society Talk At the Church Hall, Bear Street, Nayland Tuesday 27th March 7.30pm for 8.00pm Our Spring Speaker is Ian Seager who will be talking about Wildlife Gardens and Conservation. Free admission. All welcome but get there early as the hall fills quickly.

West Bergholt History Group Talk At the Orpen Hall, Lexden Road, West Bergholt CO6 3BW, Wednesday 10th January 7.30 pm The Local Story of Lancaster D177 by Michael Foster. A talk and short film on this tragic crash of WW2. Members £2, visitors £3 (pay at the door). All very welcome. For more information contact Gill 01206 240512.

Farmers Markets Please note that some dates may be liable to change so for more information

contact individual markets for details.

Lavenham Farmers Market At The Village Hall, Lavenham Sunday 25th February and Sunday 25th March at 10.00am - 1.30pm Contact Justine Paul 07704 627973

Colchester Farmers Market The Arts Centre, Colchester Friday 2nd February and Friday 2nd March at 9.30am - 12.30pm Contact Rowley Castiglione 01206 367776

Wivenhoe Farmers Market Congregational Hall, Wivenhoe Saturday 17th February and Saturday 17th March at 9.30am - 12.30 Contact Rowley Castiglione 01206 367776

Sudbury Farmers Market At St Peters Church, Sudbury Friday 23rd February and Friday 23rd March at 9.30am - 2.00pm Contact Justine Paul 07704 627973

The Connection has listed all the events in What’s On in good faith. We cannot accept responsibility for inaccuracies, changes to events or cancellations. It might be advisable to check with venues before attendance. y y y

Next issue: ??? or charity Feature your not for profit, Feature your not forvillage, profit, village, community community or charity events in our What’s events OF your CHARGE On pages by for emailing Deadline date entries On pages FREE by emailing listing toin our What’s info@theconnectionmagazine.co.uk your listing to info@theconnectionmagazine.co.uk in the next issue ???

We also welcome details of slimming We also welcome details of slimming groups, keep groups, keep fit classes, language fit classes, language courses, markets, courses, farmers markets, bootfarmers sales and www.facebook.com/TheConnectionMagazineColchester boot sales and regular clubs, groups and societies.www.facebook.com/TheConnectionMagazineColchester regular clubs, groups and societies.


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SMALL PAWS, BIG DIFFERENCE.

A drop-in class, suitable for beginners, returners and experienced. If you’re interested in coming along and would like any further info, please contact Judy:

You’ll walk for 5km through the beautiful gardens and woodland of Marks Hall, surrounded by hundreds of other four-legged friends. Tickets £7.50 on the day or register in advance for just £5 – get tickets on www.ehaat.org or by calling 0345 2417 690

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Event supported by

Grayson Perry at Firstsite Nearly 200 people filled Colchester’s Moot Hall for a recent talk given by the artist Grayson Perry, to coincide with his exhibition ‘The Life of Julie Cope’ currently showing at Firstsite in Colchester. Introduced by Sally Shaw, director of Firstsite, the artist made a typically flamboyant entrance, dressed in a purple satin mini dress, precipitous platform shoes and 70’s style wig and glasses, the whole look described by Perry as a cross between Marjorie Proops and Raine Spencer.

i

This was a hugely entertaining evening, as Perry proved to be a warm and witty speaker. He told the story of his fictional heroine, Julie Cope, an Essex Everywoman. The exhibition, described by Perry as ‘the trials, tribulations, celebrations and mistakes of an average life’ is explored through a mixed medium of tapestries, woodcuts, ceramics and audio narrative. It also examines the creation of ‘A House for Essex’, known locally as ‘Julie’s House.’ The intricately decorated house, situated on the bank of the River Stour in Wrabness, was created by the artist and architect Charles Holland and although it is available for holiday rentals, Perry was keen to reach a wider audience through his exhibition. Perry talked about his own upbringing in Essex, which had a particular resonance with many members of the audience. Renowned for challenging social conventions, his down to earth and honest reflections gave a fascinating insight into the inspirations and creative process behind the project. The exhibition ‘The Life of Julie Cope’ continues until 18th February at Firstsite http://firstsite.uk/

Photo of Sally Shaw and Grayson Perry at Firstsite by Seana Hughes i

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Notice Board New Trustee Appointment at Marks Hall Estate Marks Hall Estate are delighted to announce the appointment of two new Trustees to the board. Bill Conner and Bob Cowlin have been formally approved by the existing Trustee Board and will be working alongside current Trustees to secure the long term future of this special place. Rebecca Lee, General Manager at Marks Hall “We are delighted to welcome Bob and Bill to the Marks Hall Estate Board of Trustees. We feel confident that our new Trustees will be working hard to support the work of the Charity. All our Trustees bring with them a broad range of skills that help us protect and enhance this special place for generations to come.” Marks Hall Estate is a registered charity administered by a body of Trustees. All the Trustees are volunteers who receive no remuneration but dedicate their time and expertise to the well-being of Marks Hall. www.markshall.org.uk Marks Hall, Coggeshall CO6 1TG

Melford Hall Open Day We will be holding an Open Day on Saturday 24th February 10.00am – 3.00pm. We are still looking to recruit more volunteer room guides, and would like to give you the opportunity of meeting and chatting with some of the other volunteer room guides, as well as having a look around the Hall. Our team are a very friendly group, of all ages and backgrounds. The role will involve talking to our visitors, answering any of their questions and sharing the stories of this wonderful family home. We look forward to welcoming you. If you would like to find out more, please contact us at melford@ nationaltrust.org.uk or call us on 01787 379228, or have a look at our website, or see us on Facebook.

Can You Dig It for St Helena Hospice? Lee Connelly, the Skinny Jean Gardener and St Helena Hospice would love you to take part in our brand new Can You Dig It campaign. We are challenging everyone from budding gardeners to seasoned professionals to grow and sell produce for St Helena Hospice. To get you started we are offering 5 packets of seeds for a suggested minimum donation of £2. They will be available to pick up from our Fundraising Office until March 1st.

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There will be a prize for the person who raises the most money at the end of the campaign. This prize will be presented by The Skinny Jean Gardener on his Live Show! Also featured on Lee’s show will be the participant who grew the ugliest vegetable! The Skinny Jean Gardener will be guiding you through the process via tips and videos that will be posted to our Facebook page as well as Lee’s YouTube Channel. Lee will be taking questions throughout the campaign at the recordings of his live shows or at The Skinny Jean Gardener Festival on August 18th. To take part, please register online at http://www. sthelenahospice.org.uk/ If you would like more information, advice or collection pots to collect money for your produce, please contact Amanda in the community fundraising team by emailing fundraising@ sthelenahospice.org.uk or telephone 01206 931468.

Magazine Distributors Required

Like walking? Get paid to exercise! We are looking for adult, mobile distributors for all our distribution areas to join our existing excellent team to deliver either on a permanent or regular basis, or on a part-time basis for holiday and sickness cover. Villages include, Aldham, West Bergholt, Eight Ash Green, Fordham, Fordham Heath, Pebmarsh, Bures, Colne Engaine, White Colne, Earls Colne, Coggeshall, Kelvedon and Feering. Please register your interest by emailing; editor@theconnectionmagazine.co.uk

Eunice Grace Rees née Powling (1932 - 2017) Eunice Rees of Chappel peacefully passed away on the 14th December 2017. She was known to many for her lifelong passions for the natural world, the environment and village life. For many people, she will be remembered for her tireless work with husband John and friend Bob Jones, along with the support of many others, to establish Chappel Millennium Green, a beautiful public space open to all and a monument to their work together. Passionate about education, she taught at Chappel Primary School, then worked for 28 years in Travel Services, the family business, which her husband John and she established. As well as having a large family, she became active in founding Chappel Conservation Volunteers “Swifts”, a group of local residents whose first project was to rescue and restore the pond beside Chappel Viaduct, where she was delighted to discover a thriving colony of great crested newts, which she monitored nightly each summer for 10 years.


Another project was to build and install the original play equipment on the Chappel Playfield with money won from the pond project. Eunice’s other community activities over the years included long-term caring for several elderly and sick neighbours, undertaking the annual house-to-house charity collection around Chappel and Wakes Colne for the NSPCC and resolutely delivering The Connection magazine to the residents of both villages. She had many interests and activities including family, gardening, environmental campaigning, vegetarianism, listening to classical music, painting, reading, letter-writing and holding long conversations face-to-face and over the phone.

Useful Numbers Local Schools St. Peter’s C of E Primary School Tel: 01376 561328 Honywood Community Science School

Tel: 01206 710030

Tel: 01376 570411

Stanway Surgery

Feering C of E Controlled Primary School

Tel: 01206 572372

Tel: 01376 570296

Tel: 01787 222022

Tel: 01787 222205

Tel: 01787 227529

Colne Engaine C of E (Aided) Primary School Bures C.E V.C Primary School Tel: 01787 227446 Chappel C of E School Tel: 01787 222296 St. John the Baptist C.E.V.A Primary School Great Tey C.E Controlled Primary School Tel: 01206 210415 Fordham All Saints C of E Primary School Tel: 01206 240251 Copford C of E Primary School Tel: 01206 210439 Stanway Primary School Tel: 01206 574819 St. Mary’s Lower School Tel: 01206 211242 Stanway Fiveways Primary School Holy Trinity C.E. Primary School Eight Ash Green & Aldham

call: 01787 210701

The Pump House Surgery/Earls Colne

Earls Colne Primary School and Nursery

Tel: 01206 574849

E: editor@theconnectionmagazine.co.uk

Marks Tey Surgery Tollgate Health Centre

Her well attended funeral and burial took place at All Saints Church, Wakes Colne on the afternoon of Friday 22nd December 2017 followed by a Celebration of Life gathering at the Village Hall. Eunice’s family would like to express their sincere thanks to all those friends and family who attended the service or sent kind messages.

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Kelvedon St. Mary C of E Primary School

Eunice kept a handmade card with her with a poem which embodied a strong belief of hers. It reads: “Smile awhile, and while you smile another smiles, and soon there will be miles and miles of smiles because you smiled.”’

ADVERTISE HERE Established Local Trusted

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She leaves a loving family of 3 generations, including 4 children, 5 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren and will also be missed by many relations, friends and pupils.

Coggeshall Surgery

Tel: 01206 240880 Soaring High Montessori Coggeshall Tel: 01376 564392 Stoke by Nayland C.E. V.C.P School Tel: 01206 262418 Nayland Community Primary School Tel: 01206 262348

Doctors Kelvedon and Feering Health Centre

Bures Surgery Branch Surgery Tel: 01787 227529 Hardwick House Group Practice Tel: 01787 310000 Nayland Surgery Tel: 01206 262202

Village Halls Aldham Village Hall Tel: 01206 240682 Mount Bures Tel: 01787 228753 Bures Community Centre Tel: 01787 227278 Nayland Tel: 0774 895 3175 Stoke by Nayland Tel: 01206 262943 Wormingford Tel: 01787 227631 Feering Community Centre Tel: 01376 572467 Great Tey Village Hall Tel: 01206 210248 White Colne Village Hall Tel: 01787 221919 Colne Engaine Village Hall Tel: 01787 223668 Earls Colne Village Hall Tel: 01787 224370 Bures Community Centre Tel: 01787 227278 Eight Ash Green Village Hall Tel: 01206 540245 Copford Village Hall Tel: 01206 211235 Chappel and Wakes Colne Tel: 07771 622525

Tel: 01376 572906 Kelvedon Surgery Tel: 01376 574560

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CODEWORD Each letter in this puzzle is represented by a different number between 1 and 26. The codes for three letters are shown. Once you have filled these throughout the grid you can start guessing words and reveal other letters. As you find the letters enter them in the box below.

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Find us on


Purging the Plastic

How we can all make a difference The recent ban on imports of millions of tonnes of plastic waste by the Chinese government means that we now have to face up to the fact that we can’t keep throwing plastic waste away simply because there is no ‘away.’ Plastic products either sit in landfill sites forever or end up in the sea where they eventually break down into toxic particles which are eaten by fish and so enter our food chain. We can help clean up our environment by taking part in litter picks on our streets and coastlines. Try www.keepbritaintidy.org or www.sas.org.uk for details of local schemes. The problem of plastic waste may appear insurmountable but many believe the solution is less about recycling and more about tackling the problem at source, meaning we should all look at how we can use less plastic. We can all take small steps in our own homes to start making a difference globally, such as: •Use your local dairy and have milk delivered in glass bottles. •Use the meat, fish and deli counters in supermarkets to cut down on plastic packaging and avoid buying veggies in plastic bags. •Buy laundry powder in cardboard boxes instead of liquid in bottles. •Buy bars of soap, not liquid in plastic bottles. •Use tap water instead of bottled and use refillable glass bottles. •Some health food shops stock products for bulk buying including laundry liquid so that you can buy by refilling your own containers. There are more hints and tips here: www.lessplastic.co.uk/ including a Borrow a Bag scheme which is running successfully

in Kingsbridge, Devon. Although the 5p charge for supermarket plastic bags had significantly cut usage, the organisers found that smaller shops were still handing out nearly 3,000 plastic bags per week. So with the support of local businesses, residents and the council, there are now stocks of reusable cloth bags in participating shops identified by a ribbon with ‘Hello Kingsbridge, Goodbye Plastic’ stitched onto the handles. Anyone can borrow a bag free of charge which you can return next time you are in town. They say: ‘Every time you refuse a plastic item is a ‘win’ for the ocean – one less piece to float around for centuries’, which means everyone can make a difference. Through the lessplastic website you can buy merchandise and posters to help raise awareness in the community and the workplace. In June this year, Colchester based filmmaker Eleanor Church (Lark Rise Pictures) will be sailing 3000 nautical miles across the North Pacific with a formidable all-women crew. Over three weeks, they will travel from Hawaii to Vancouver through the densest ocean plastic accumulation zone on the planet, the North Pacific Gyre (better known as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch). Why? They’ll all be doing some form of research - scientific, design-based, creative and looking at the impacts of plastics on the health of the planet and our bodies. Eleanor will be making a film for a global audience, to make people think about this like they never have before - and to look towards solutions.

Photo - Eleanor Church

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23


Sudoku Competition

How to play

Fill in the grid so that every row, every column, and every 3 x 3 box contains the digits 1 to 9, with no repetition! That’s all there is to it. You solve the puzzle with reasoning and logic - there’s no maths involved and no adding up.

WIN £25 Fill in and cut out and send to: Sarah Banks, The Connection, Applegarth, Whitestreet Green Boxford, Sudbury, Suffolk, CO10 5JL The first correct entry out of the hat will win the prize.

Closing date 2nd March 2018

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Spot the Dierence

There are ten differences - can you find them?

Codeword

Crossword Across: 1 Surreptitious, 7 Audit, 8 Stapler, 9 Eyeball, 10 Adage, 12 Nun, 14 Charger, 16 New, 20 On air, 21 Spatula, 23 Spirits, 24 Ingot, 25 Stiletto heels.

11. Shoe 2. Beauty Spot 3. Belly button 4. Rainbow 5. Shorts colour 6. Wheel 7. Socks 8. Bangle 9. Clouds 10. Finger

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25


Time to Get Pruning by Pippa Greenwood

At this time of year the weather is often perfect for pruning and cutting back woody plants, so take advantage of the fact that deciduous trees, shrubs, hedges and climbers are now devoid of leaves and get stuck in. Here’s how to make sure your pruning will really benefit your plants: • For a small hedge or to roughly reshape a shrub, a good, sharp pair of well-oiled shears should do the job. Angle the blades to make a level trimmed surface. To make a neat and level surface when cutting the top of a hedge, use a taut string as a guide line. For large hedges consider using a powered hedge cutter or hedge trimmer, but make sure you can use it safely! • When removing stems at various heights and of varying thicknesses, use ‘loppers’, which are much better at cutting through relatively thick stems than shears or secateurs and yet also allow for accurate positioning of the cut. When cutting back branches above your head, wear protective headgear and goggles. • Secateurs are used for the most precise pruning of smaller woody stems.

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Provided they are good and sharp, you can make a perfectly clean and accurate cut. Always cut to an outwardfacing bud (so that the new growth produced from that bud grows outwards). Secateurs are good for removing dead and dying stems as well as for formative pruning (where you are helping to ensure the plant grows in the direction you want it to), and for pruning to encourage flowering. • To remove larger tree branches or if you have fruit trees to prune, then a pruning saw is the perfect tool. Use a sawing action for best results and make the cut a few millimetres from the main stem to which the branch you are removing is joined. A cut like this will heal quickly and the wound will be smaller and less prone to fungal rotting. • Check the best pruning time for the plants you have in mind. Although most hedges and many shrubs can be cut back now, there are exceptions. • Some trees - mainly those in the Prunus family such as cherries, plums, apricots, damsons, peaches and nectarines - are very prone to a potentially fatal fungal infection known as ‘silver

leaf’. To reduce the likelihood of this, prune these trees in the summer unless there is no alternative. • Pruning tools should be really sharp; if blunt, the job will need more effort and may result in damage to the plant from a jagged cut or crushed stems. • Create sloping cuts whenever you can so that rain and moisture runs off (wetness encourages wood rotting), and cut close to but not on top of a bud to allow new growth without dieback - you will need to use secateurs, loppers or a saw to do this. • Stand back from time to time when pruning to check the overall appearance of the plant and judge which part to tackle next, as close up it is harder to see how your pruning is affecting the overall shape of the plant. Visit Pippa’s website www. pippagreenwood.com and you’ll find some great gardening things: ‘Grow Your Own with Pippa Greenwood’ (where you receive your chosen garden-ready vegetable plants in the spring accompanied by weekly advice and tips from Pippa) plus Nemaslug, bio-controls, gardening tools, raised bed kits, Grower Frames, signed books and more!

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And Another Thing... Tom Receives a Proposition (Part 1) By Tom Hughes

The Old Paraffin Lamp: a dusty, gloomy boozer tucked away behind a derelict industrial estate. A scruffy hole frequented by crumpled, lonely old souls, desperately in need of a makeover. (I meant the pub, not the customers. Then again…) But how Nigel and I loved it. My old chum and I had frequented this hostelry for years and it was, I suppose, always going to be the perfect venue for the bombshell Nigel was about to drop. “Tom, I’ve got something to tell you. You know me and Val have been seeing each other for a while?” “Her ex-husband isn’t going to punch you again, is he Nige?” “The thing is neither of us getting any younger. And…well I’ve decided to pop the question.” Marriage? My heart sank. “Listen, Nige, old chum. Have a serious think about it. Is she really the girl for you?” “Too late, Tom. I proposed last week. And she accepted.” Immediately I slammed into reverse gear. “Well congratulations! I was wondering when you’d make an honest woman of her. This really is the most marvellous news!” I said through gritted teeth. Immediate thoughts of pool games postponed, quiz nights dipped out of - all sorts of catastrophic, life changing events. But if the shock of this momentous

news wasn’t enough, the beatific smile that now played on Nigel’s lips heralded an even more horrendous revelation. “And of course I’m going to need a best man.” The watery look in his eyes indicated a request was imminent - one from which there was no escape. All I could do was grimace and wait for the words to tumble from his mouth. “Tom, mate. Will you be my best man?” Well, what could I say? The poor man had been struck over the head by Cupid’s bow and was now lost to everything we both held so dear. And now I too was being sucked into the madness - totally and utterly against my will. “Nige, it would be an absolute honour.” Managing to dodge an unwelcome man hug by extending my hand, we shook on it. And then it began. “Val wants to get married in a castle.” A pause as l slowly placed my pint pot down onto the table that had served us well for so many years. The fightback had started, and I was leading the charge. “Listen here Sir Lancelot, if you don’t watch it, by the end of this process, you’ll be friendless, potless and…” But it was pointless. Talking over me, he embarked upon a garrulous soliloquy espousing the wondrous benefits of getting hitched. Like no one had ever done it before. It was only when he moved onto table decorations that I put a stop to it. “Nigel! Have you heard yourself? Table decorations? What in the name of thunder are you babbling

on about?” Nigel threw his nose in the direction of the dartboard. “Val said you’d be like this.” Fearing I had overstepped the mark, I placed a conciliatory hand on his shoulder. “Look, mate, if you want to talk to me about table decorations, you go ahead.” Nigel’s shoulders sagged as, slowly, the pretence began to fade. Through pained eyes he said, “Val says I’ve got to find little bottles to put jelly beans into.” Stifling a smirk, in the least patronising manner possible I said, “Nige old chum, if we need to find you some jelly beans, then jelly beans we shall find.” But I knew my Old Pal, I could tell there was something else. My usual tactic was to sit quietly and wait. I wasn’t wrong. After a pause Nigel said. “Tom, I’m going to have to give up our Monday nights.” Incensed, I said, “Why?” “Zumba classes.” My head fell into my hands. Now it was Nigel’s turn to comfort me. “Don’t worry Tom, it won’t be for ever. And of course, it’s your job to organise the stag.” Suddenly, things didn’t seem so terrible. “OK Nige, you go the bar and I’ll peel off the back of this beer mat. Now, pass me a pen - this is going to take some organising!” To be continued…

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Connection Magazine Feb/March 2018  

A colourful front cover to sing in the first signs of Spring! This issue has lots of events in the What's On pages. We also have recipes for...

Connection Magazine Feb/March 2018  

A colourful front cover to sing in the first signs of Spring! This issue has lots of events in the What's On pages. We also have recipes for...

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