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Wet & Wild Dive into our feature on fantastic local watersports

Bottoms up! Top tipples to try with our guide to local drinks Summer style Fashion to help you look and feel your best this season Home sweet home Interior style and advice from the experts Wedded bliss Our guide to the very best local venues

Celebrity chat Shire meets chart-topping star Jess Glynne


WIN Shopping vouchers worth £200, festival tickets, and a luxury afternoon tea! Turn to page 161 WE VISIT


The thriving Shropshire town with an arty heart


An island rich in history and beautiful beaches


Britain in Bloom winner with activities galore


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HELLO, DEAR READER… Publisher Dan Bromage Editor Kate Speedie Art Editor Tom Sullivan What’s On Editor Eluned Watson Production Editor Jo Williams Advertising Design Sarah Norman Designers Ella Knight Meryl McIntosh Staff Writers Sally Williams Helen Gordon Sales & Marketing Pauline Jones Shona Newton Distribution Paul Howard Finance & Accounts David Kynaston Nicky Kynaston Jane Osman Email Shire magazine editorial@shiremagazine.co.uk advertising@shiremagazine.co.uk


ummer is finally upon us, so here’s hoping the sun shines for us all for a while. It makes such a difference when we can get out and enjoy the stunning natural surroundings we are lucky enough to have all around us in the Shire region, so let’s all make the most of the long, warm days while they’re here. In this edition, we have a feature packed with suggestions for summer fun – and all of them are pretty much guaranteed to leave you wet through! We’ve spoken to experts in coasteering, surfing, whitewater rafting, kitesurfing and more to discover all you need to know to give these amazing watersports a go. We’re surrounded by lakes, reservoirs, rivers and beautiful coastlines, so why not put on your wetsuit and have a go? Don’t worry – you don’t have to be a thrill seeker; we’ve also made sure there’s a bit of gentle yachting and laidback paddleboarding in there too! Our other main feature also has a liquid focus, this Beach view from Rhoscolyn, Anglesey time looking at the stuff we drink! Following our focus on the region’s food producers in our last edition, we felt it only fair to let the area’s brewers, vintners and gin-makers have their say. From artisan distilleries to local cider orchards, we celebrate and raise a glass to the local legends behind some of our favourite tipples. Our regular beer and wine experts are included as always, as well as our bursting food section and all the arts, books, style, homes, health and education coverage you have come to expect from us here at Shire. Cheers!


John Hargreaves, Gloria Mans, Catherine Buckley, P Parker, Clive Williams, John Stubbs, Helen Cooke, Pip Gale, Lizzie Deery, Graham Tinsley, Josef Herbert-Byrne, Deborah Law

IN THIS ISSUE Festivals, fairs and outdoor shows abound in our summer listings section, from page 6

Shire Magazine PO Box 276 Oswestry Shropshire SY10 1FR Tel: 01691 661270 SUBSCRIPTION RATES ONE YEAR – £19.95 TWO YEARS – £34.95


Discover where to try the UK’s most popular watersports on page 64

www.shiremagazine.co.uk Print ISSN 2514-3913 Online ISSN 2514-3921

SHIRE MAGAZINE is published bi-monthly by Superstar Publishing Ltd. Every effort is made to ensure that the information and advice contained in these articles is correct and appropriate, but no liability or responsibility for loss or damage to any person acting or refraining from action in reliance on or as a result of anything omitted from such articles can be, or is accepted by, the authors, the publishers, their employees or any other persons connected with Superstar Publishing Ltd. Views expressed by contributors to Shire magazine are not necessarily those of the magazine or of Superstar Publishing Ltd and should be attributed to the authors concerned. Save as expressively permitted by law no part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without the prior written authority of the Publisher, acting for Shire magazine. Privacy Policy published online at www. shiremagazine.co.uk © 2019 Superstar Publishing Ltd, all rights reserved. Registered Number: 10604188.

Top local tipples to try in our drinks special, from page 90

GET IN TOUCH! We want to hear from you…


Tell us about your upcoming events. Just remember that we work in advance, so 1st August is the deadline for events in our next issue, September/October.


Share your reader stories. Have you got an extraordinary or exciting story to tell? We’d like to feature it in the next issue. Send us an email and don’t forget to include a picture or two as well.


We have lots of regulars readers can contribute to:

with their name and anything else you want to tell us. See page 121 for further details.

Reader photos Taken a great shot recently? Email your best effort and you might get picked! See page 126.

Get social Follow, like and friend us on Facebook and Instagram to be the first in line for event updates, competitions and more.

Reader poems Do you like penning the odd line? So do we! Send us your poems – we’d love to include them on our poetry page. See page 158 for more.

Visit our website online at www.shiremagazine.co.uk and send submissions and information by email to editorial@shiremagazine.co.uk.

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Give a friend the gift of Shire!


TURN TO PAGE 144 for our fantastic subscription offer!

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 3

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Gift Vouchers make excellent presents

The Old Wharf, Trevor, Llangollen Follow our signs from LL14 3SG • W: www.canaltrip.co.uk E: peterjones@canaltrip.co.uk • T: +44 (0) 1978 824 166

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• Collectables • Clocks • Ceramics • Furniture • Jewellery • Coffee Shop

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(Including drinks) on presentation of this voucher

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Steam trains in southern Snowdonia Beautiful lake and mountain views Family friendly attraction – dog friendly too!

Meet the real ‘Alice the Little Welsh Engine’ 27th July

and famous author Pauline Hazelwood. A popular day out with the kids!

BBQ on a Summer’s Evening

1st, 8th & 15th August Join us for an evening excursion stopping off to enjoy a barbecue whilst watching the sunset across the lake. Mini Steam Gala 24th to 26th August Several of our engines in steam with lots of passenger and goods trains in action, plus have a go - ‘driver for a fiver’. For further information and advance tickets

www.bala-lake-railway.co.uk 01678 540666

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Contents J U LY & AU G U ST 2 01 9 6 What’s On Shire’s packed events diary covers north and mid Wales, Cheshire, the Wirral and Shropshire PAG E 6 4 There’s no excuse not to get active once you’ve read our special feature

18 Jess Glynne We meet the award-winning, chart-topping singer as she tours the region 38 A Day At The Races We spent the day at Chester Racecourse…

PAG E 1 4 0

56 Ludlow South Shropshire’s largest town has something for everyone

The perfect accessories to finish off your summer outfits

PAG E 3 8 Discover the latest events at Chester Racecourse

PAG E 7 0 From castles and beaches to galleries and zoos, Anglesey has it all…

PAG E 1 3 1 Getting hitched? Find your perfect venue with our guide

58 Big City Check out what’s on further afield, in Liverpool, Cardiff, Birmingham and Manchester 61 Reviews The Shire team’s top picks of recent shows and festivals

Shire’s round-up of the area’s top microbreweries, vineyards, distilleries and cider orchards

We speak to Jess Glynne ahead of her performance at Stadiwm Zip World

Get inspiration for your garden at the region’s top flower shows

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118 Petal Power Take a closer look at three of the region’s upcoming flower shows 121 Pets & Wildlife The latest campaigns by the RSPB and the Wildlife Trust, plus cute pet pictures 124 Arts & Crafts Meet the artist who has carved out a whole new career – with his chainsaw – plus our regular photography competition

70 Anglesey We hop across the Menai Strait to take a closer look

131 Weddings From where to wed to how to hen… we’ve got it covered

72 Active A great walking route, plus a new cycle scheme

134 Health & Beauty Expert wellbeing advice, and we bust some more health myths!

75 Holidays Where to head for a lastminute summer getaway, or long-term investment

136 Charities & Volunteering A look at the organisations that do so much for so many good causes across the area

81 Colwyn Bay A warm welcome is certain in the north Wales town

139 RJAH News Updates from the Robert Jones & Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital

82 Twenty questions We put our searching queries to Lord Newborough of the Rhug Estate

140 Beach Boys Men’s swim shorts, T-shirts and summer accessories

90 Bottoms up Looking for a long, cool drink on a hot summer’s day? We round up the best producers 97 Homes Dementia-friendly decorating tips, plus top new products 105 Home Furniture We speak to Hafren Furnishers in Llanidloes 106 New Homes Updates from the latest housing developments

PAG E 1 1 8

117 Take The Inside Out How to create a relaxing area in your garden

128 Get Set For Summer You’re sure to make an impression in our selection of sundresses and eveningwear

89 The Clive Arms, Ludlow We visit the refurbished inn on Oakly Park Estate

PAG E 1 8

113 Gardens Discover how and why you should make space for a pond

64 Make a splash Ways to get wet, with everything from windsurfing to coasteering

84 Food & Drink Delicious recipes, the perfect picnic tipples and the gourmet options at July’s CarFest North PAG E 9 0

110 Hello Yellow Brighten up an indoor space with a splash of sunshine!

109 Timber Frames Darren Jarman of Lowfield Timber Frames shows us his latest self-build

142 Retirement A look at special cinema screenings for older people 144 Subscribe to Shire! Never miss an edition of your favourite local listings magazine! 147 Expert Q&A Sara Hilton from Wrexham Glyndwr University talks football 149 Schools Find out what students from the local area have been getting up to 155 Letters We hand over to Shire’s readers! 157 Books & Poetry The latest events, signings, workshops and new releases 160 What’s In Your Stars? Find out what’s coming your way with a horoscope forecast from Gloria Mans 161 Competitions Your chance to win some amazing prizes!

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Enjoy a taste of Wales


5th July, Music In The Park, Belle Vue Park, Wrexham Fourpiece cover band Thunderbug, covering acts from The Who and The Killers to Elvis Presley. 7pm.

6th July, Let’s Fish!, Llangollen Canal, Chirk Learn to fish for free from a professional, fully qualified angling coach. Bait and equipment is provided. Booking required. 10am-4.30pm.

7th July, Medieval Falconry, Criccieth Castle Falconers from Albion Historical Falconry take you back in time to learn all about your favourite kings and queens and the birds they loved and flew. 12.30pm & 2.30pm

12th-13th July, The Gin Society Festival, Venue Cymru, Llandudno Offering 120 gins with three bars plus tasters and masterclasses. Friday, 6pm-10.30pm; Saturday noon-4.30pm & 6pm-10.30pm. £12.50, including a free G&T.

Experience the delicious flavours of Wales at the Beaumaris Food Festival on 31st August and 1st September. The town green will once again be dotted with marquees and gazebos offering tantalising nibbles (and meals for the hungry!) from the best in Welsh produce to award-winning international street food. There will be bars selling locally produced beers, ciders and spirits as well as imported wines, cocktails and soft drinks surrounding the

green, where visitors can sit back and enjoy the stunning view of the Menai Straits and Snowdonia while listening to an eclectic mix of music performed live on stage throughout both days. In addition to the food, drink and craft stands, there will be quality entertainment, including talks, children’s entertainment and chef demonstrations. Adult tickets cost £5 for a single day and £7 for both days. Accompanied children under 14 go free. www.beaumarisfoodfestival.co.uk

Winging it this summer with RSPB

Medieval fun at Conwy Castle

The RSPB has lots to keep children occupied over the holidays. RSPB Conwy’s Big Wild Sleepouts take place on 27th and 28th July and 3rd and 4th August costing £30 for adults and £15 for children. And every week in August RSPB Ynys-hir in Powys has Wild Challenge Wednesdays for £4 per child. www.rspb.org.uk

Pony heaven in Aberaeron Aberaeron Festival of Welsh Ponies & Cobs takes place on 11th August. Anyone who has a registered Welsh pony, cob or part-bred is invited to take part, and visitors can enjoy dressage, scurry driving, jumping and fancy dress. Tickets cost £7.50; under-16s are free. aberaeron festival.co.uk

Visit Conwy Castle every Friday from 26th July to 30th August for fun and games – medieval style! During the Knights, Jesters & Wizardry Wonder event, let a town jester entertain you, listen to tales of days gone by, have a go at archery or even join a wand workshop if you fancy a bit of magic!

Knights and dragons at Harlech Castle Do you have what it takes to be a successful knight? Find out at Harlech Castle’s Knight School, every Tuesday from 23rd July to 27th August. Of course every knight wants to meet a dragon, and you can be sure to meet one or two at Dragon Days on 21st and 22nd August. As part of the fun-filled weekend, there will be a chance to learn circus skills with Flotsam the castle jester.

13th July, Rowen Carnival, Playing Field, Rowen Memorial Hall, Rowen A traditional village carnival with plenty to keep the whole family entertained. 3pm-5pm.

13th July, Have-A-Go Archery, Chirk Castle Fancy yourself as a bit of a Robin Hood? Have a go with the Wrexham Bowmen archery club. £1 for six arrows. 11am-4pm. Normal National Trust admission applies.

Jess Glynne to headline Access All Eirias One of the UK’s hottest artists, Jess Glynne, will bring her vibrant brand of pop music to this year’s Access All Eirias event at Stadiwm Zip World on 7th July. Jess will play to a packed-out stadium at the much-loved event in Colwyn Bay, alongside special guests Nina Nesbitt and

Dusky Grey. The event is one of the hottest dates in north Wales’ music calendar and sees thousands of fans descend on the seaside town. Tickets cost £49.50 from Venue Cymru.

Biketastic fun in Llangollen Rev up for a fantastic day out at LlanBikeFest at Llangollen Royal International Pavillion on 3rd and 4th August. With hundreds of bikes and a packed programme, it’s sure to thrill the whole family. Tickets from £10. www.llanbikefest.co.uk 6 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Live musical offerings at Galeri Caernarfon Darkside: The Pink Floyd Show, 5th-6th July Replicating the live experience of Pink Floyd in the 1970s, these shows include spectacular laser light shows as well as a selection of Floyd favourites. 8pm. Tickets £18.

language literature, music, art and comedy in locations around Caernarfon. Performances at Galeri Caernarfon include Cabarela Arall, Sioe Ben Dant a Cadi and Steve Eaves a’r Band. Visit www.gwylarall.com.

Gwyl Arall, 12th-14th July A weekend festival of Welsh

André Rieu: Shall We Dance?, 27th-28th July André invites

Music, games and nature at Penrhyn You can let your inner composer out at Penryhn Castle every Sunday from 21st July, with musical workshops and performances led by local musicians. On every

Monday from 22nd July you can wild with fun-filled nature days, or try your hand at football, tennis and traditional Victorian games every Thursday from 25th July. All sessions run for six weeks and are free of charge, but normal admission charges apply. www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Superheroes and science at Techniquest

Wrexham rocks! Wales’ biggest music festival, Rock The Park, returns to Borras Hall Lane, Wrexham from 9th to 11th August. Featuring 60 live acts, three huge arenas, a festival campsite and around 15,000 people, this rocking event is one that you definitely don’t want to miss. Tickets start from £30, and under-12s are free. www.rockthepark.co.uk

Techniquest Glyndwr, Wrexham, has a host of activities for all the family over the next few months. Celebrate the 50th anniversary of the moon landings from 20th and 21st July; get serious about science with Supermaterials from 3rd to 16th August, and explore the world of superheroes from 17th August to 1st September. www.tqg.org.uk

you to put on your dancing shoes for his spectacular 2019 hometown concert from Maastricht, broadcast as live in cinemas. Join André Rieu, his Johann Strauss Orchestra, world-class sopranos, the Platin Tenors and special guests for a magical cinema experience. 3pm and 7pm. Tickets £12.

Lucky Peterson, 21st August The legendary bluesman celebrates his 50th anniversary by playing his own original style of contemporary blues, fusing soul, R&B, gospel and rock and roll. The show will also feature Tamara Tramell, a talented singer from Texas. 8pm. Tickets £16. www.galericaernarfon.com

Agricultural delights in Anglesey

For a traditional day out filled with rural pursuits, visit Anglesey Agricultural Show on 13th to 14th August. The annual two-day event at the Mona Showground is one of Wales’ premier agricultural events and a great day out for all the family. The show attracts

around 60,000 people each summer, and features competitive classes for cattle, sheep, pigs, goats, fur and feather, shire/light horses, horticulture, cookery and crafts. There are also shopping and exhibition pavilions, a wide range of equestrian events, craft exhibitors, trade stands, food stalls, produce exhibitions, machinery and vehicle stands, and more. Gates open from 8am and tickets cost £16 for adults and £4 for children. www.angleseyshow.org.uk

Steam into summer Meet Alice the Little Welsh Engine at Bala Lake Railway on 27th July; author Pauline Hazelwood will also be reading stories at Llanuwchllyn station. There are Barbeque Specials on 1st, 8th and 15th August,

and the August Mini Gala on 24th to 26th August. www.bala-lake-railway.co.uk

Wrexham Museum is really on the ball An exhibition chronicling the story of football in Wales opens at Wrexham Museum on 13th July. The exhibition showcases shirts, caps, rattles, programmes, historic and muchloved souvenirs, vital telegrams

and letters and more. The exhibition also offers the chance to dress up as 19th-century century footballer, rank Welsh goalkeepers in order of greatness and invent your own football chant. www.wrexham.gov.uk July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 7

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Music for all at Graig Aid

13th July, Food For Thought Nepalese Night, Kalpa Bhadra Kadampa Buddhist Centre, Llandudno Enjoy a relaxing, guided meditation followed by a delicious three-course vegetarian meal. 6.30pm. £15

13th July, Cheese & Wine Evening Train, Llangollen Railway Enjoy a glass of wine and some locally sourced cheese while travelling by steam train through the Dee Valley. £30, including return train to Carrog.

20th July, Prestatyn Carnival Follow the colourful procession through the town to the carnival field on Bastion Road, where a full programme of entertainment awaits. The parade leaves from the top of Prestatyn high street at noon.

20th July, Junction Rocks Against Childhood Cancer Festival, Labour Club, Llandudno Junction A fantastic one-day festival of live music, family fun and entertainment in aid of the Glan Clwyd Hospital Central Children with Cancer Fund. The music starts at midday and continues throughout the day with a great line-up of local bands, headlined by The Rock of Ages Experience, the ultimate 1980s rock tribute. 10am-11.30pm. Call 07946 299361.

20th July, Beaumaris Lifeboat Open Day, Lifeboat Station, Beaumaris A fun and informative family day that will involve a demonstration by the lifeboat. A number of organisations and stalls will be in attendance. 11am-4pm. Call 07824 764474.

20th July, Offa Carnival, Bellevue Park, Wrexham This community festival promises for all the family with axemen, a land train, dog show, face painting, a Punch & Judy show, stalls, refreshments and a mini funfair. Entry free. 11am-4pm.

A fantastic line-up has been announced for this year’s Graig Aid music festival, which takes place on 19th and 20th July. This family-friendly festival, which has already raised over £80,000 for local charities, takes place at the Three Pigeons Inn in Graig-fechan and boasts a fantastic mix of established musicians and new talent as well as some surprises. Acts

appearing at this year’s event include skaband Skariad, Martyn Peters, The Amazing Clouds and country rock duo Keenan Jones. Camping facilities will be available, plus a bar well-stocked with local real ales and ciders. Hot food will be on sale and several marquees will ensure the show can go on whatever the weather. Tickets cost from £7. www.graigaid.com

A fascinating story at Mary Jones World

Get set for Ladies’ Day Glamour and excitement are sure to meet at Bangor-on-Dee Ladies Day on 2nd August. This a popular fixture in the racing calendar sees well-dressed guests grace the course on the banks of the River Dee. In addition to the thrilling jump racing action on the track, all eyes will be on the other main event – the Ladies Best Dressed Competition. Prices start from £7, with hospitality packages available. www.bangorondeeraces.co.uk

Journey into railway’s past Step back in time with the Ffestiniog & Welsh Highland Railways every Sunday from 4th to 25th August and on 15th and 22nd September and take a journey through the history of the railway itself. Board an authentic heritage train and enjoy a guided tour from Caernarfon to Rhyd Ddu. Along the way you’ll be given plenty of chances to stop and explore hidden gems, benefit from some unusual photo opportunities and even enjoy a mug of station master’s tea or coffee! See www.festrail.co.uk for time and tickets.

Experience a day out at the award-winning Mary Jones World and discover the story of the teenage girl who walked 26 miles to buy a Welsh bible. Set on the edge of Lake Bala, with a picnic area, café and children’s playground, Mary Jones World offers a great time out for children and adults alike. Awarded Visit Wales’s Hidden Gem award, the heritage centre is idyllically placed in the heart of Snowdonia National Park along some of the best walking and cycling routes in the UK. If you would like to discover how the story of a young Welsh girl changed the life of millions, the centre is open seven days a week from 10am to 5pm. Tickets are £4.25 for adults and £2.75 for children. www.bydmary jonesworld.org.uk

Hit the trail Put on your trainers and enjoy spectacular scenic trail runs on 14th July. The Summer Trail Races on Hawarden Estate offer 5km and 10km distances, as well as a 5km canicross event and a 1km dash. www.hawardenestate.co.uk

Calling all superheroes!

Music on screen

Kids can come dressed as their favourite superhero, or character and travel free on Llanberis Lake Railway during Super Hero Week from 5th to 9th August. There are even prizes on offer for the best-dressed characters. www.lake-railway.co.uk

Neuadd Dwyfor in Pwllheli has three concert screenings: Westlife on 6th July, Take That on 26th July and André Rieu on 27th and 28th July. www.neuadddwyfor.com

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Jools Holland to launch International Eisteddfod


20th-21st July, Conwy River Festival On Quay Day at Conwy’s annual on-the-water festival there will be fun events and market stalls, as well as rowing and canoe races on the river near the quay. Cruisers, racers and classic boats will also be sailing in Colwyn Bay.

The UK’s most popular pianist and former Squeeze member Jools Holland will launch this year’s International Eisteddfod, which takes place in Llangollen from 1st to 7th July. The week-long festival features some of the world’s most internationally renowned musicians, including FrenchMexican star tenor Rolando

Villazón, salsa, pop and flamenco outfit Gipsy Kings and award-winning Celtic music band Jamie Smith’s Mabon. Every year, more than 4,000 performers and 50,000 visitors converge on Llangollen’s International Pavilion to see a unique combination of competition, performance, and peace and friendship. The

It’s a mystery at Venue Cymru

The Chicago Blues Brothers: Motown Mission, 26th July A high-octane musical mashup with hits from Aretha Franklin, Ray Charles, James Brown, The Temptations and The Supremes. 7.30pm. Tickets £25.50 Let’s Twist Again, 3rd August A night of fabulous songs from the rock’n’roll era starring West End star Suzi Madin and some of the best vocalists. 7.30pm. Tickets from £22.50 The Mousetrap, 12th August The longest running show in theatre, Agatha Christie’s play will keep you guessing to the last. 7.30pm, £20.50.

Anything For Love, 29th August Now in his 27th year performing Meat Loaf’s incredible back catalogue, Steve Steinman brings you a new production featuring fantastic stage sets, a live band and Mr Loaf’s greatest hits. 7.30pm. Tickets £31 In The Night Garden, 31st August-1st September Join Igglepiggle, Upsy Daisy, Makka Pakka and friends for the perfect theatre experience for the whole family. 10am and 4pm. Tickets £18.50 adults, £16 children. You can find out more and buy tickets at venuecymru.co.uk

festival’s competitions reach their climax on the Saturday, with the finest choirs and dance groups battling for the highly sought after Choir of the World and Dance Champions of the World titles. The week then finishes in style on Sunday with Llanfest, a festival featuring some of today’s hottest bands. international-eisteddfod.co.uk

Beaumaris steps back to middle ages The walls of Beaumaris Castle will ring to the sound of sword on shield as knights do battle to take control of the castle on 6th to 8th August. From 24th to 26th August the castle hosts its Medieval Festival. www.beaumaris.com

Fairies visit Llangollen The Llangollen Faery Festival takes place on 10th and 11th August at Llangollen Pavilion. The largest faery event in the UK brings a world of sparkles, bubbles and, of course, fairies to the town. Tickets from £2. www. northwalesfaeryfestival.com

Living history at Rhuddlan Castle Witness what life would have been like when Rhuddlan Castle was an active stronghold on the River Clwyd at the Living History Re-Enactment on 27th

and 28th July. On 31st July and every Tuesday in August you can also discover what life was like for a child living in medieval times. cadw.gov.wales

20th-27th July, Conwy Classical Music Festival, St Mary’s Church, Conwy This annual event features prominent musicians from Wales and beyond. www. conwyclassicalmusic.co.uk

25th-28th July, Holyhead Festival Featuring bands covering songs by Katy Perry, Taylor Swift, Queen and Madness and more, alongside fun family events.

26th-28th July, Llandudno Jazz Festival, Bodafun Farm Park, Llandudno Three days of the best UK jazz with a stellar line-up including Zoe Rahman, Tony Kofi and Sara Ossclag. llandudnojazzfestival.com

27 July, Create Your Own Macramé Plant Pot Hanger, Mostyn, Llandudno Create your own plant hanger with Sian from Welsheggdesigns, who will guide you through each stage. No experience needed and all materials are provided. 10.30am-5pm. £45.

27th-28th July, Snowman Triathlon, Capel Curig This race weekend offers something for everyone, from the Snowman Savage to the sprint duathlon and children’s aquathlon.

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Top-class blues and soul

28th July, Holyhead Festival Colour Run Run 2.5k or 5k in this relaxed family-friendly event while being doused from head to toe in paint. The route starts from Newry Promenade at 2.30pm. All finishers receive a medal and refreshments.

28th July, Cymru Knievels’ One Day North Wales Coast Run A fun three-hour ride from Deeside Industrial Estate to South Stack Lighthouse, finishing at the Holyhead Festival. The ride starts at 10am and is open to all, with a donation of £10 per bike in aid of Wales Air Ambulance. 2nd-10th August, Eisteddfod, Llanrwst The National Eisteddfod attracts around 150,000 people and this year comes to Llanrwst. Steeped in tradition, it also embraces all that’s new and youthful in Welsh culture. Everyone is welcome, with translation facilities available to non-Welsh speakers.

An incredible line up awaits visitors to the North Wales Blues & Soul Festival from 2nd to 4th August, including British harmonica player Paul Lamb, who has collaborated with some of the world’s greatest rock stars, Kyla Brox, US swamp blues band Delta Moon and rising star Elles Bailey. Other acts confirmed for 2019 include The Colin Hinds Band, The Rumblestrutters, Rob Heron &

Discover Paul Simon in Colwyn Singer-songwriter Gary Edward Jones brings the life and songs of Paul Simon to Theatr Colwyn on 5th July with Something About Simon. In this poignant and critically acclaimed show, Gary not only recites the music of one of his idols, but also tells the unique story of Paul Simon, combining visuals, stage design and, of course, great music. The show starts at 7.30pm and tickets cost £14. www.theatrcolwyn.co.uk

Colour and pageantry come to Chirk castle Pikes, muskets and armour will be at the ready for a dramatic reenactment of the Civil War at Chirk Castle on 20th to 21st July. The company of Pikemen & Musketeers will be entertaining visitors to Chirk Castle with colour, pageantry and loud bangs as they demonstrate how an army fought in the 1640s. The Pikemen & Musketeers are a ceremonial unit of the Honourable Artillery Company (the ‘HAC’), the oldest regiment in the British Army, which traces its origins back to a charter granted by King Henry VIII.

4th August, North Wales Half Marathon, Conwy This incredible race starts and finishes on the beach next to the Mulberry Marina and crosses into the Snowdonia National Park along the way. This half marathon may not be the easiest you ever do, but it will be one of the most stunning. 9am. www.runwales.com

7th August, Stories Of The Seashore, Nova Centre, Prestatyn Join the North Wales Wildlife Trust for a familyfriendly selection of seashore activities, including a virtual reality experience. 10am-2pm.

The Tea Pad Orchestra, One Eyed Crow, Forty4, Skariad, Yubaba and Wrexham-based Delta Radio. The festival, which is in its sixth year, takes place on the fields of Theatr Clwyd, overlooking the beautiful market town of Mold, with artists performing on an outside stage and in the theatre. Camping is available on-site, including boutique glamping chalets. www.nwbluesandsoul.co.uk

What’s On at William Aston Hall The Warrior Monks, 7th July Direct from China, The Warrior Monks of The Southern Shaolin Temple are back with their highoctane kung fu mastery. 7.00pm Tickets £27.50 Jimmy Carr: Terribly Funny, 19th July Famous stand-up comedian, presenter and actor Jimmy Carr is back with his hilarious new tour. 7.00pm Tickets £32.45 Wrexham Symphony Orchestra, 20th July Richard Howarth conducts the Wrexham Symphony Orchestra in a special concert marking 50 years since man’s first walk on the moon. The programme includes Shostakovich’s Festive Overture, Sibelius’ Violin Concerto and Holst’s The Planets and features prizewinning concert violinist Sophie Rosa. 7.30pm Tickets £11.

Saddle up for the Denbigh & Flint Show Stunt riders Atkinson Action Horses are just one of the attractions at the annual Denbigh & Flint Show on 15th August. Gates open at 8.30am and tickets cost from £15 for adults and £3.50 for children. www.denbighandflintshow.com

Fun on the rails at Llangollen Llangollen Railway is holding a Classic Transport Weekend from 6th to 7th July, with a timetable of steam, diesel and heritage railcars and a classic bus service, while Thomas the Tank Engine visits from 9th to 11th August. www.llangollen-railway.co.uk

12 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Laughs galore at Rhyl Pavilion Rhod Gilbert: The Book of John, 18th July The multi-awardwinning Welsh comedian is back with a live show that sees him as funny as ever, but like never before: raw, personal and brutally honest. 8pm. Tickets £29.50 Seussical, 1st-3rd August A lively, colourful and fun-filled musical taking us into the world

Variety at Wrexham’s Stiwt Only Boys Aloud Academi & Rubicon Dance, 16th July Some of Wales’s finest up-and-coming talent join forces to present an evening of music and dance. 7.30pm. £12. The Variety Concert, 28th July This brilliant show features a fantastic line-up of acts, headlined by the amazing comedy magician Mandy Muden, who reached the semi-finals of Britain’s Got Talent in 2018. There will also be music from singer Tom Anderson and duos Ocean Rain and Vermillion, while comedian Glen Wool provides the laughter. 7.30pm. Tickets £20. www.stiwt.com

of Dr Seuss. 2pm and 7pm. Tickets £16 adults, £12 children.

Lewis, Roy Orbison and Johnny Cash. 7.30pm Tickets £19.50

Rock’n’Roll Paradise, 14th August Bringing to life the music of the giants of rock’n’roll, including Buddy Holly, Jerry Lee

Roy ‘Chubby’ Brown, 29th August With more than 2,000 live shows to his name there’s no doubt Roy is Britain’s ‘King of Comedy’. 7.30pm Tickets £26. www.rhylpavilion.co.uk

Beautiful Brynkinalt Take a stroll in the beautiful gardens of Brynkinalt on 31st August, when the grounds are open as part of the National Garden Scheme. The gardens on the Wales/Shropshire border have been extensively redesigned and replanted to bring them back to their

10th August, Red Dragon Archery Club, Caernarfon Castle The Red Dragon Archers demonstrate how the bow has evolved since the days of the medieval longbow and provide instruction on how to shoot one. Learn how to load and fire a trebuchet, watch an arrowsmith making arrowheads and talk to the garrison’s ladies about food and herbal remedies.

10th August, Eglwysbach Show, Colwyn Bay Agricultural and horticultural show featuring cattle, sheep, light and heavy horses (horticulture and domestic), sheep shearing, photography, children’s classes and a fairground. 9.30am-5pm.

former glory and will be open from noon to 4pm. Entry is £5 for adults and free for children. www.brynkinalt.co.uk

11th August, Beginners’ Contemporary Calligraphy, Mostyn, Llandudno A fun day of calligraphy with Janet Smith from Oak Leaf Caligraphy. No prior experience is needed and all materials are provided. 10.30am-4pm. £45.

All wood fun Woodfest Country Show, the UK’s biggest wood festival, returns to north Wales from 12th to 14th July with a wide variety of wood related activities, crafts and forest industries. Tickets cost from £16 for adults and £6 for children. www. woodfestcountryshow.co.uk

Festival on the move The Moveable Feast, a circus of food, drink and entertainment, takes place at Porthmadog on 13th July, Llandudno on 27th July, Benllech on 17th August and Amlwch on 24th August. www.themovablefeast.org

The Fratellis and The Coral at Llanfest Scottish indie rockers The Fratellis are to headline Llanfest, the finale of the Llangollen International Music Eisteddfod on 7th July, alongside The Coral. They’ll be joined in the line-up

by The Pigeon Detectives and Dodgy. Tickets cost from £39 for standing. Glamping is available just a stone’s throw away from all the action, with prices starting from £80. www.llangollen.net

14th August, An Evening of Steam & Song, Welsh Highland Heritage Railway, Porthmadog An evening steam train ride followed by a performance by the Ardudwy Welsh male voice choir. www.whr.co.uk

18th August, Go Wild @ West Shore!, West Shore Beach, Llandudno North Wales Wildlife Trust hosts a day for all ages, with a beach clean, strandline search, virtual reality, wildlife gardening, games, arts and crafts and more. 11am-4pm.

23rd-26th August, Country Roads Music Festival, Bryn Y Grog Hall, Marchwiel The best country and western music, plus stalls, camping, line dance tuition, raffles, Irish bingo, live acts and a country disco. From £35. Booking essential.

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Arts for all ages at Theatr Clwyd

24th-26th August, TVWales Rock & Pop Music Festival, Llandudno Promenade Featuring emerging recording artists from the UK and USA, the cream of north Wales talent and some of the best covers bands in the north-west. Martin Rafferty & The Northern City Lights headline. Free entry.

25th-26th August, Medieval Re-Enactment, Denbigh Castle The Prince’s Retinue are in residence at Denbigh Castle over the bank holiday weekend, transporting visitors back in time with living history displays.

31st August, Battle of Crogen Medieval Weekend, Chirk Castle Local re-enactment group Cwmwd Ial make an encampment to represent the Welsh forces, while Les Miles des Marches represent the English forces. Look around the encampments, see the differences in arms and armour, and learn about the Battle of Crogen, which took place in 1165 in the Ceiriog Valley. 10am-4pm.

Buzz-AH! Don’t Stop Believing, 2nd-3rd July Join Buzz-AH! – an awardwinning charity that promotes inclusion through the performing arts – for an evening packed with fantastic song and dance. 7.30pm. Tickets £10. Mark Watson: The Infinite Show, 7th July After being bombed with yoghurt on Taskmaster and half-killed on Celebrity Island with Bear Grylls, Mark returns to what he’s best at: being indoors. Here he offers some thoughts on empathy, with his usual notoriously high joke- and rant-per-minute rate. 7.30pm. Tickets £19.

Fun under the stars at Chirk

The RAF Eurofighter Typhoon Display Team will make their debut appearance at the Rhyl Air Show on 24th to 25th August. The action-packed, two-day event will also feature a Lancaster Bomber, Spitfire and Hurricane, plus displays from a formation aerobatic team and a parachute display. The show opens at 11am with displays from 2pm. Admission is free.

Chirk Castle is hosting two amazing outdoor cinema experiences, with Bohemian Rhapsody on 30th July and Monty Python & The Holy Grail on 1st August shown on a huge screen under the stars. On 27th August, all the family can enjoy Folksy Theatre’s Mister Magnolia on his adventures. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/chirk-castle

Family Arts Festival, 26th-28th July Bring your whole family along for a fun-packed, low-cost, creative weekend with shows including Tabby McTat, The Buildy-Uppy Dance Show and Inside, with multi-sensory interactive show for one- to four-year-olds. Tickets from £2. www.theatrclwyd.com

Turn your eyes to the skies

31st August, Llandudno Goldwing Light Parade Come and see over 150 Honda Goldwing Motorcycles on the promenade from 10am to 4pm at officially the biggest light display in the country. The bikes will parade around the town centre between 8pm and 8.45pm, showing off their fantastic light displays, and will then park on the promenade while the town mayor and other dignitaries choose the best lit bikes in various categories. 31st August, Snŵdling, Porthdinllaen Beach, Pwllheli Take to the water with awardwinning artist Kim Atkinson to snorkel and sketch what you see under the waves. Brief snorkel training is provided, artistic guidance is given throughout and all equipment is provided. Booking essential. £25. Call 01248 351541.

Fractured, 11th-13th July Fresh from the 2019 Dance World Cup in Portugal, medalwinning Elsberdance bring you their latest electrifying production, featuring stunning choreography, excellent technique and magical special effects. 2pm and 7pm. Tickets £10.

Summer party time at Tŷ Pawb Head to Tŷ Pawb on 25th August for The Big Beat: Summer Party – an evening of live music from one of the UK’s top cover bands The Big Beat are an exciting, crowd-pleasing band who have already wowed audiences across the world with their eclectic mix of

Showtime at Pontio Don Pasquale, 4th July Welsh National Opera presents a riotous version of Donizetti’s classic comic opera. Tickets £19. Shakespeare’s Globe on Tour, 5th-7th July A trio of plays

rock, soul, pop and blues. The group boast an endless repertoire of hits and cult classics to guarantee an unforgettable night. There will be a fully stocked late bar, cocktail bar and food and drink available. The party starts at 7pm and tickets cost £10.

exploring the themes of refuge and displacement. From £7.50. Ethiopian Dreams, 19th-23rd July Circus Abyssinia presents their stunning production inspired by the story of real-life jugglers Bibi and Bichu. Tickets £15. www.pontio.co.uk

16 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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‘It’s always good to see people I wouldn’t normally reach. I love that the songs resonate and touch people, whatever their age or background’


ith more number-one singles to her name than any other British female solo artist, Jess Glynne has certainly burst on to the music scene in style, and her second album, Always In Between, looks set to be as popular as the first. Over the past few months she has been touring the UK performing to huge audiences, including at Merseyside’s Haydock Park Racecourse. This July, she heads for north Wales to perform at Zip World Stadium in Colwyn Bay. Having not even turned 30 yet, Jess has all the energy she needs to tackle a massive tour and is enjoying every minute of it. ‘I had a lot of fun after the last shows we did and I couldn’t say no,’ she says. ‘My show is full of energy and I hope it

leaves everyone with a big smile on their face and an amazing experience. I assure you, no one will be left disappointed!’ Jess is headlining several outdoor shows this summer, but she isn’t daunted. ‘Our approach is the same for both indoor and outdoor events,’ she says. ‘The band and I love playing live and the crowds don’t differ too much in size, so it’s great! Every crowd has a different energy but the atmosphere at both types of shows is amazing.’

Heading to the Shire region

Playing at Haydock Park’s Jockey Club venue in June was great fun, says Jess. ‘I sneaked out into the crowd and put a bet on! I came up with a winner but it wasn’t down to my knowing the form – just luck!’ At her stop on 7th July at Zip World Stadium, she is looking forward to reaching new audiences. ‘It’s always good to see people I wouldn’t normally reach,’ she says. ‘I love that the songs resonate and touch people, whatever their age or background.’ Jess’s incredible success is down to her sheer hard work and enthusiasm, as well as the support of her parents. Explaining why she is excited to be visiting many of the country’s top sporting venues this summer, she says, ‘I used to love sports – I was in most of the teams at school and loved athletics. My dad always encouraged that. ‘My parents always introduced me to new music from a young age and I was obsessed with vocals and performing for long as I can remember. I think I always had it in me but it wasn’t until I left school that I realised it could become a reality.’

18 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Royal Welsh Show marks centenary

1st July-30th September, Rhayader Art Group’s Summer Exhibition, Elan Valley Visitor Centre, Rhayader An exhibition showcasing the group’s range of talents, with original artwork for sale. Prints and greetings cards are also available. 10am-4pm.

3rd & 17th July, Gwerin Aber Folk Clwb, Ceredigion Museum, Aberystwyth Anyone who wants to sing, play or listen to an evening of live music is welcome to this free social gathering. 7pm-10pm For full details, visit www. aberystwythfolkclub.co.uk.

4th, 11th & 18th July, Kettles & Cream Teas, Talyllyn Railway Station, Tywyn Enjoy a special Victorian train experience, with a Welsh cream tea at King’s Cafe, a forest walk and a guided tour of the Narrow Gauge Railway Museum. Make your journey extra special and book a hamper for £8 per head, or add prosecco and a goblet for £12 each. For a full timetable, visit www.talyllyn.co.uk.

The prestigious Royal Welsh Show celebrates its 100th show this year and will be sharing the love with visitors from 22nd to 25th July at Llanelwedd. Along with a number of commemorative touches at the event, show organisers are offering one lucky couple the opportunity to have an all-expenses paid wedding on the showground during the first day. The four-day show features an exciting four days of livestock competitions, with entries travelling

Sesiwn Fawr at Dolgellau •

5th-7th July, International Ceramics Festival, Aberystwyth Arts Centre An exciting weekend of ceramic events, with live demonstrations, kiln firings, performances, lectures, exhibitions and films. It features ceramicists from all over the world, including China, Japan, Uzbekistan, Italy, Latvia and the UK. Fullprice weekend tickets, £150; concessions available. www. internationalceramicsfestival.org

6th-7th July, Barmouth Kite Festival, Barmouth Beach opposite the lifeboat station A spectacular display of kites and other wonderful flying creations. The festival will be held on Barmouth beach opposite the lifeboat station.

Geraint Jarman, Meic Stevens and Estella are among the line-up at Sesiwn Fawr, which returns to Dolgellau from 19th to 21st July. The music festival offers a host of events for children and families across the relaxing weekend. The whole of Saturday afternoon’s programme will be held on the Sgwâr, with twmpath dawns (much like a ceilidh), a procession following two local folk tales, storytelling sessions and more – all of which is free. There are plenty of places to eat in the town centre, from chip shops and restaurants to pubs, with real ales on tap. The festival takes place in the middle of some wonderful countryside. Dolgellau is within Eryri National Park and near the exhilarating paths of Cader Idris. Early bird weekend tickets are available from £45. www.sesiwnfawr.cymru

from far and wide to compete. Additional activities include forestry, horticulture, crafts, countryside sports, shopping, food and drink and a 12-hour programme each day of exciting entertainment, attractions and displays. Visitors are warned not to swim in the nearby river and young campers are urged to stay in groups of two or more. Tickets costs from £23 for adults and £5 for children. www.rwas.wales

Magical days at Corris Children can dress up for Hogwarts and get a free train ride on Corris Railways’ Wizard & Dragons Day on 3rd and 4th August. Then on 24th and 25th August, Corris celebrates its annual Model Railway Exhibition at Y Plas, Machynlleth. Call 01745 337821 for details. www.corris.co.uk

Opera classics at The Hafren Welsh National Orchestra returns with a collection of opera classics at The Hafren on 5th July. WNO’s musicians will be joined by conductor Harry Ogg and soloists Joyce El-Khoury and Jason Howard for this special concert, and the programme includes works by Verdi, Puccini, Dvorák and Wagner. With muchloved favourites and a few lesser-known gems, book soon for an unforgettable evening. Tickets £16.50. www.thehafren.co.uk

20 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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ABBA and cake at Hafren

It’s festival time in Machynlleth! Choosing highlights from the Machynlleth Music Festival, from 18th to 25th August, is never easy thanks to its top-quality line-up! The festival opens on 18th August with a Cymanfa Ganu, a festival of sacred hymns sung with four-part harmony by the

audience under the direction and musical director of Côr of a choral conductor. On 19th Godre’r Aran – performs on 19th August. The concert will August, tenors Rhys Meirion and also features four of Eirian’s Aled Wyn Davies join soprano pupils, each of whom Meinir Wyn Roberts DID YOU for a programme has the potential to remember. to be future stars KNOW? Dilwyn Morgan of Welsh music. The Cymanfa For the full comperes, with Ganu on 18th programme and Menna Griffiths August is a as accompanist. ticket prices, free event please visit moma. Eirian Owen – a pianist, accompanist machynlleth.org.uk.

Mamma Mia! will bring some Mediterranean sunshine to The Hafren in Newtown on 7th August. Sophie has just one wish to make her wedding perfect: to have her father walk her down the aisle. Now she just has to find out who he is. Academy Award-winner Meryl Streep leads the all-star cast, which also includes Pierce Brosnan, Colin Firth, Amanda Seyfried and Dominic Cooper, in this musical celebration of mothers, daughters and fathers, and true loves lost and new ones found. Based on the Broadway hit and filled with the ABBA songs, it’s the feelgood experience that will have you singing and dancing over and over again. The show starts at 1.30pm and tickets cost £5 (including tea, coffee and cake). Call 01686 614555.


Get bogged down in Llanwrtyd Hundreds of participants from around the world are expected to grab their flippers for the 34th annual World Bog Snorkelling Championships, which takes place on 25th August in Llanwrtyd Wells. The current world champion and world record holder is Neil Rutter, who achieved a time of 1min 18.82sec in the 2018 championships, breaking the previous record of 1min 22.56sec which was set in 2014 by Kirsty Johnson from Lightwater in Surrey.

The 2018 ladies’ champion was Elinor MacCormac in 1min 48.46sec, while the overseas champion was Belgian Jean van de Putte in 1min 38.75sec. The event takes place at Waen Rhydd bog on the outskirts of the town, and gets underway at about 10am. Event entry costs £15 for seniors and £12 for juniors. There will be food and drink, crafts, a bouncy castle, live music and a real ale and cider bar, making it a great day out even if you don’t fancy taking the plunge! www.green-events.co.uk

Hit the water at Caban Coch Reservoir on 1st August and get a different view of Elan Valley from a two-person kayak. After a safety briefing, you’ll head off around the reservoir in the company of an instructor and learn about the history of the stunning dams on the way. The adventure is suitable for swimmers, those with some kayaking experience

and children from the age of eight. Kayakers will need transport, waterproof footwear, appropriate clothing, a complete change of clothes and a towel just in case. Sessions take place from 10am to 1pm and 2pm to 5pm. Tickets cost £20 for adults and £17.50 for children (eight to 18 years). www.elanvalley leisure.co.uk/kayaking

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Festival with a difference at Llanfyllin Workhouse

6th July, Introduction To Navigation, Brecon Beacons Visitor Centre, Libanus, Brecon One-day course to help you enjoy the hills and mountains of the UK in safety. £35.

6th July, Llandrindod Carnival, Llandrindod Wells A fun, traditional carnival, run by Llandrindod Round Table and Ladies Circle. Noon-9pm.

6th & 20th July, Knighton Food & Craft Market, Knighton Community Centre Held on the second and fourth Saturday of every month. Free entry.

Phoenix Alternative Festival returns for another glorious year at Llanfyllin Workhouse from 8th to 11th August. The event, run by Steampunks, brings together people from all sub-cultures to have fun and raise money for charity. As always, there will be an eclectic mix of local and international acts, plus plenty of colourful

activities to enjoy and participate in. The fun starts on the Friday with a welcome to visitors at 6pm. As well as live music across the weekend, there will be a late-night cabaret, show parade, t’ai chi and a costume competition hosted by La Dutchessa. Tickets cost from £45. Camping passes are available. www.the-workhouse.org.uk

7th-12th July, A Work That Reconnects Retreat, Centre For Alternative Technology, Machynlleth A week-long retreat combining meditation with volunteering in woodlands and gardens with daily silent reflection. £230

Waltzing with André Rieu

13th July, Llanidloes Carnival Founded in 1932 to raise money for Llanidloes Hospital, this carnival features a parade through the town led by Llanidloes Silver Band and events, games and competitions in Victoria Park. www.llanidloes. com/llanidloes-carnival

TrekFest in Brecon Beacons Walk, jog or run through the Brecon Beacons to raise money for the charity of your choice at TrekFest on 6th July. Brecon Beacons National Park is full of spectacular scenery, rolling countryside and impressive mountains. The incredible mountain range is a training ground for the SAS and will test you to your limits with challenging climbs and steep descents. Both the 25km and 50km routes venture to the summit of Pen Y Fan – southern Britain’s highest peak. Choose your distance and your charity, and make every step count! www.trekfest.org.uk

Runners vs trains Multi-terrain runners will be heading to Tywyn on 17th August for Talyllyn Railway’s 36th annual Race the Train event. Spectators can travel on the race trains to cheer on the runners, but the capacity is limited. For more information, visit www.racethetrain.com.

André Rieu will get everyone’s feet tapping in a concert broadcast at Aberystwyth Arts Centre on 27th and 28th July. André’s annual concerts in his home town of Maastricht, Netherlands, are filled with humour, fun and emotion for all ages – and, of course, DID YOU magnificent music. Tickets cost £10 to £17. KNOW? From 9th to 31st André Rieu August, Richard can speak Cheshire returns to the arts centre five different to direct Oliver!. languages Lionel Bart’s musical was last performed in Aberystwyth in 2005, when local star Taron Egerton starred as the Artful Dodger. Tickets cost £30 for adults and £112 for families. www.aberystwythartscentre.co.uk

Strings in Llanfyllin Britain’s longest-running chamber music ensemble, the Allegri String Quartet, have played at St Myllin’s Church, Llanfyllin, for the past 40 years. Those first performances developed into the Llanfyllin Music Festival, which this year takes place from 27th July to 4th August and will once again feature the quartet. All concerts take place at the church and tickets cost £19. www.llanfyllinfestival.org.uk

22 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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O G 2019 EVENT S

Bonhams Valuation Day • Conferences Monday 1st July, 11am – 3pm Residential / Day • Weddings • Celebrations • Events • Tours • Bed & Breakfast • Café • Listed Gardens An Opera Gala Concert

Come and explore the grounds at Gregynog and follow our summer trail, see what animals and birds you can spot and what plants, flowers and trees are growing in the grounds. Trail £2.00 per person.



July 2019, 6pm

Gregynog, Tregynon,Join NrtheNewtown, Friends of MWO for their annual fundraising summer’s Powys, SY16 3PL • 01686 650 224 evening of opera to launch MWO’s enquiries@gregynog.org new “(In) fidelity” season. This devised concert, featuring www.gregynog.org specially talented young singers from Wales

Awst 18-25 August 2019

20th July – 2nd September

Specialists will be at the Hall for a free auction valuation for pictures, silver & jewellery, works of art, furniture and general antiques. Bonhams fine book department will also be on hand to advise on books and manuscripts.

Friends of Mid Wales Opera present

Gŵyl Machynlleth Festival

Summer Nature Trail

Tickets £16.00, available from The Hafren (01686 614556) or on the door. For more information please phone 01686 614563 or go to www.midwalesopera.co.uk. Booking required.

International Academy of Voice, will be entertainingly led by Charlotte Forrest from the piano.

Cambrian Summer School for Strings Tedesca Quartet Concert Saturday 31st August, 7.30pm The renowned quartet led by Nic Fallowfield presents a sparkling programme including the Ravel quartet. Tickets £15 per person and includes a Glass of wine or soft drink. Tickets available from www.cambrianstrings.org or on the door.

House Open 2th – 16th & 19th – 22nd August 11am – 4pm Gregynog will once again be opening its doors for you to wander around its corridors. Mary Oldham our librarian will be giving talks on the history of Gregynog on Tuesday 13th at 11am, Thursday 15th at 2pm and Tuesday 20th at 11am. Entry to the hall is free, tickets for the talks are £5 per person. Booking required for the talks only.

The best in Classical, Jazz & Welsh Music, Exhibitions, Lectures & Talks

Cambrian String Orchestra Sunday 1st September, 3pm www.gregynog.org 01686 650224 enquiries@gregynog.org Y Tabernacl, Machynlleth, Powys, SY20 8AJ machynllethfestival.co.uk • 01654 703355

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Located near Newtown Powys SY16 3PL

The beautiful sounds of strings come to you this Sunday afternoon with Tea & Cakes to follow. Tickets £15.00 per person, (Children U16 free) includes Tea & Cakes.Tickets available from www.cambrianstrings.org

Courtyard Café Open from 10am – 4pm every day.

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scape to the countryside between Welshpool and Newtown. E Fantastic places of interest within

35-mile radius include: Chirk Castle, Llangollen, Bala, Dolgellau, Lake Vrynwy RSPB, Welshpool, Coed y Dinas, Powis Castle, Newtown, Llanidloes, Hafren Forest, Machynlleth, Ynyshir RSPB, Borth, Devils Bridge, Aberystwyth, elan Valley, Abbey Cwm Hir, Whittington Castle, Ellesmere, Shrewsbury, Church Stretton, Ludlow, Craven Arms, Stiperstones, Long Mynd, Knighton, Clun Castle.

Russell returns to Beddgelert 21st - 23rd June

• Free Sat TV • Wi-Fi • Dog Owners Welcome Find us on Facebook

the new Oakdale Premier luxury 6 berth holiday Ehomexperience complete with sun deck! ABERMULE, MONTGOMERY, POWYS, SY15 6NW • Tel: 01686 670 408 Email: park2006@btinternet.com

The Aberystwyth

Cliff Railway

The longest electric cliff railway in Britain w w w.aber ystw y theclif f railway. com

...and featuring the largest camera obscura in the world!

Contact us at info@whr.co.uk


CYCLE MUSEUM Cycles of all ages for all ages There are over 200 bicycles on display of all ages and types spanning around 200 years of bicycle history


The National Cycle Museum 01970 617 642

Cliff Terrace, Aberystwyth, SY23 2DN

‘Y CONSTI’ is a breathtaking setting for visitors to enjoy a range of refreshments. Bowling Alley, Bouncy Castle, Frisbee Golf, Exhibitions, Shops... and much more.

The Automobile Palace, Temple Street, Llandrindod Wells, Powys LD1 5DL Tel: 01597 825531 www.cyclemuseum.org.uk email - curator@cyclemuseum.org.uk Open days are normally: Tuesday, Wednesday & Friday 10am - 4pm plus other days/times by arrangement for groups

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13th-21st July, Rhayader Carnival Week Non-stop summer fun, creativity and community engagement.

Get on yer bike in Llandrindod Wells Llandrindod Wells is home to a remarkable Aladdin’s cave of cycles and cycling memorabilia. The National Cycle Museum, in the town’s Automobile Palace, is packed with displays that take you on a journey through the 200-year history of DID YOU the cycle, KNOW? starting The term with a ‘bicycle’ was replica

coined in France in the 1860s

of the first British bicycle, the Hobby Horse from 1818. Alongside hundreds of bikes, the museum showcases old bike parts, the first pneumatic tyres, cycle clothing, race trophies and programmes, cycling magazines and much much more. There are several variations of the penny-farthing, which revolutionised cycling in the late 19th century, as well as trikes, tandems, bikes with more

than one saddle, foldable bikes, bikes with unusual gearing and chains, and bikes made of every conceivable material from iron, steel and carbon bikes to wood, bamboo and plastic. There’s is even a knitted version! The museum is open 10am to 5.30pm on Tuesdays and 10am to 4pm on Wednesdays and Fridays. Tickets cost £5 for adults and £2 for children. www.cyclemuseum.org.uk

15th July, The Barber Of Seville, Aberystwyth Arts Centre Mischief and mayhem run riot in Rossini’s comedy about Figaro and Rosina, recorded live at Glyndebourne in 2016. 7pm. From £10.

15th July, Music For A Summer Evening, Ceredigion Museum, Aberystwyth Ysgol Penglais puts on a special evening with talented performers from the music and drama departments. Free. www.ceredigionmuseum.wales

Simon Weston at Theatr Brycheiniog

20th July, Gin & Swing, Talyllyn Railway, Tywyn Join the Dyfi Distillery team on this night of exploring the world of Welsh gins, followed by dancing to the Footloose Dance Orchestra at Neuadd Pendre until 11pm. www.talyllyn.co.uk

Grab a paddle in Barmouth Watersports lovers will be heading to a river between the mountains for the family-friendly Mawddach Paddlesports Festival in Barmouth from 6th to 7th July. The two-day festival of races for canoes and rafts offers opportunities for novices to try many of the events, including

canoeing, rowing and stand-up paddle-boarding. The adventure takes place on Afon Mawddach – one of the most picturesque rivers in the UK. The course is based on the 10km tidal stretch between Barmouth harbour and Penmaenpool bridge, strategically located for spectator refreshments beside the historic George III Inn. The event is being staged to raise money for Hope House Children’s Hospice, Ty Gobaith and other local charities, and is organised by the Mawddach Rotary Club Trust in conjunction with Merioneth Yacht Club. For further details, visit www.merioneth yachtclub.co.uk.

Simon Weston, who suffered burns to 46 per cent of his body during the Falklands War, shares his life story with an intimate audience at Theatr Brycheiniog, Brecon, on 17th July. The show will include a Q&A session. All tickets cost £20. Visit theatr brycheiniog.ticketsolve.com.

21st July, Barmouth Food Festival Featuring live music, stalls and children’s activities around the harbour, plus activities throughout the town at lots of participating cafés and restaurants.

Discover Gregynog’s history Gregynog Hall in Tregynon, near Newtown, is hosting a series of special house visits on 14th July, 4th August and 22nd September, offering visitors the chance to soak up more than five centuries of history and culture. From 2pm, families can explore the historic hall with

Gregynog’s librarian Mary Oldham. Discover the secrets of the house, its heritage and treasures, and find out all about the Davies sisters and other characters who have lived here. The Davies sisters created one of Britain’s most important private art collections and donated 260 works to National Museum Wales in the mid20th century. However, some of the pictures, a great deal of the furniture and many, many books still remain at Gregynog. Tours cost £12, including tea and cakes. Booking is required. www.gregynog.org July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 25

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Your pass to a whole week in Green Man land

27th July, Raptors With Iolo Williams, Falcon Experience, Machynlleth Spend a full day learning about the unique and majestic raptors of mid Wales with wildlife expert and TV presenter Iolo. £145. www. raptorexperiencewales.co.uk

6th August, Owl Encounter, nr Brecon Join owl enthusiast Lewis Phillips to learn about the birds’ habitat, behaviour and diet. Lewis will bring four owl species, including a barn owl, and you’ll have the chance of flying them from a gloved hand. 10am-noon or 1pm-3pm. From £20. gooddayout.co.uk

There will be an environmental and creative vibe, plus a wide range of live musical talent, at Green Man in Crickhowell from 15th to 18th August. If you pick up a Settlers’ pass, you can walk through forests, waterfalls and rivers as camping for a whole week from 12th August, to discover the beauty

Exhibitions at the National Library of Wales

Folk, Protest & Pop, Gregynog Annexe, until February 2020 Wales is often described as ‘the land of song’, and even the national anthem refers to ‘a land of poets and singers’. But where did this musical tradition begin, and how did it develop over the centuries? Find out more in Aberystwyth. www. llyfrgell.cymru

3rd, 4th, 17th & 18th August, Vintage Trains, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway Travel in style on trains based on 1903 Great Western carriages, departing Llanfair Caereinion at 11.10am and 2.45pm or from Welshpool at 1.05pm and 4.20pm. www.wllr.org.uk

Celebrating country music in Welshpool

Collecting Contemporary, Upper Central Hall, until March 2020 Discover the striking new additions to the contemporary Welsh art collection. From geometric abstraction to contemporary impressionism, this exhibition showcases a wide range of styles from 20th- and 21st-century Welsh artists.

3rd August, Spoon Carving Workshop, Elan Valley Visitor Centre, Rhayader Learn to carve greenwood spoons using traditional tools. All tools and materials will be provided. 9.30pm-4.30pm. £60.

24th August, Rude Health Bog Triathlon, Waen Rhydd Bog, Llanwrtyd This event – the most unusual in the triathlon calendar – starts with an eightmile run followed by a single length of the 60-yard peat bog trench and then a 12-mile mountain bike ride. The event is open to individual for £15 each and relay teams of three (one discipline each) for £25 per team. www.green-events.co.uk

of the Welsh surroundings. Immerse yourself by hosting barbecues with produce sold daily from the local butcher, team up for the legendary Settlement Pub Quiz, cuddle up around the Settlement bonfire or enjoy live music, workshops, outdoor adventure and family fun. www.greenman.net

National Sheep Dog Trials in Dinefwr Park The 2019 Welsh National Sheep Dog Trials, Food & Craft Festival takes place in Dinefwr Park, Llandeilo from 2nd to 4th August. The popular event is an opportunity to see top shepherds compete with their faithful dogs and abiding sheep. Entry is £8; National Trust members can enter for free.

Cowgirls and cowboys will set up camp on Powis Castle showground at the 32nd Welshpool Country & Music Festival from 19th to 21st July. The popular fundraising event takes place in aid of the Heulwen Trust, a charity dedicated to providing boat trips for those who are less able than most. The show starts on the Friday evening DID YOU in the beer tent and KNOW? continues through to Sunday evening. The festival’s The exciting musical Saloon Stage line-up includes The is housed in a Castle Belles, Memphis Belle and Pedro. 7,500ft2 The showground is near marquee the traditional market town of Welshpool, which will be joining in with the country and western theme. At 1045am on Saturday and 9.45am on Sunday the Welshpool Westerners will charge down the bank in traditional costume to the tune of The South Will Rise Again. The Westerners will also close the event with Trilogy. Weekend tickets cost £40. www.countrywestern.org.uk

26 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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14th & 15th September 2019 Celebrating 30 years of Private Ownership

Open Easter to October Daily in School Holidays Closed Monday & Friday at other times

See all


in steam together for the first time in 20 years Y TUNIT PHOTO

Unique 2 mile miniature railway along the beaches of the stunning Mawddach Estuary in the shadow of the Cader Idris mountains




Your chance to see work in progress on external restorations and to view 3 Engines that have remained hidden for many years.

For the first time ever we are giving you the opportunity to drive a GWR Rheidol Tank as well as Margaret in Devil’s Bridge

‘WALES TO THE WORLD’ Working progress on Phase 2 and 3 of the £2.2 million project.

Special weekend timetable will be operating - see website for details Park Avenue, Aberystwyth, Ceredigion SY23 1PG T: 01970 625819 E: info@rheidolrailway.co.uk www.rheidolrailway.co.uk

Teas m a e r C & ’ ‘Kettles BO erience rain Exp … a Victorian T


Experience living history in beautiful Snowdonia Thursdays: 6th, 13th, 20th & 27th�June 4th, 11th & 18th July 5th, 12th, 19th & 26th September

Departs 11 am Adults Child under 15

£29.50 £9

An Extra Special Day Out….

■ The Talyllyn Railway is probably alone in being able to run its original passenger train dating from the 1860’s, and invites you to enjoy a guided tour travelling in this unique train ■ The guide will travel in your carriage for part of the journey, pointing out interesting features and answering questions ■ Stops for lunch, photographs, forest walks and more ■ Make your journey extra special and book a hamper to take with you on the train for just £8 per person*, treat yourself to some fizz by adding a 200ml bottle of Prosecco for just £4 ■ Return to Tywyn Wharf is about 3.22 p.m. where you will be served a traditional cream tea in King's Licensed Café and taken on a guided tour of the Narrow Gauge Railway Museum ■ The Victorian carriages are unable to accommodate wheelchairs ■ Please Note Advance Booking is advised *Please let us know if you have dietary requirements.

01654 710472

www.talyllyn.co.uk • enquiries@talyllyn.co.uk Gorsaf Wharf Station, Tywyn LL36 9EY Photography ©Barbara Fuller ©Darren Turner

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1st-31st July, Northwich Festival of Arts A monthlong celebration of the arts, comprising long-running and one-off events. For full details, see www.visitnorthwich.co.uk.

Cruise your way to CarFest •1st July–31st August, Blue Planet Aquarium, Cheshire

Oaks, Ellesmere Port The aquarium has a host of attractions and exhibitions for all the family over the summer holidays. Enjoy the thrills of underwater wildlife, including a shark tunnel, coral cave and a flooded forest. Tickets £17. Shark dive experiences are also available.

Have a great time doing amazing things at CarFest, which takes place at Bolesworth Estate from 26th to 28th July. Founded by DJ Chris Evans, this super-charged weekend is packed full of happiness. This year promises more cars, more music, a feast of great food, kids’ entertainment, mindfulness and more. Music headliners include Beverley Knight, Johnny Marr, Tony Christie, All Saints, Cast, Jack Savoretti, Kaiser Chiefs and Tom Odell, while food

DID YOU KNOW? CarFest takes place in support of children’s charities

and drink highlights include the CarFest Pub, wine tasting, a chocolate factory and a artisan food market. To top it all there’s fourwheeled action, with a track laid out over two paddocks, and some new car collections. Tickets cost from £69. www.carfest.org

All aboard for a tribute to the King

1st July-22nd September, May Day: A Century Of Change, Knutsford Heritage Centre A fascinating exhibition celebrating the history of Knutsford’s May Day festival and seeing how it has changed since 1919. Featuring costumes, crowns and photographs. Tuesdays to Saturdays 11am-4pm; Sundays 2pm-5pm.

ChesterBoat hosts Elvis onboard the Lady Diana on 24th August, performed by tribute act Marcus Hallows. Tickets cost from £33.50 and include a river cruise, disco, complimentary drink on arrival and a buffet supper. www.chesterboat.co.uk

Chester Music Festival at Storyhouse

2nd July, Wine Dinner – Laurent Perrier, Brasserie Abode, Chester Enjoy an exclusive fivecourse menu and paired wine flight, with fine wines selected by award-winning importer Hallgarten Wines. Founded in 1812, Laurent Perrier has been innovative in creating unique and elegant champagnes for nearly 200 years, making it one of the world’s most esteemed champagne brands, and the largest family-owned brand. 7pm-10pm. £85 per person.

Storyhouse Kitchen Prom, 20th July A concert of well-known classics, performed by Chester Music Festival’s Ensemble Deva, including Mozart’s Overture to The Marriage Of Figaro and a Dvorak double bill of his Cello Concerto and his most famous work, Symphony No.9 “New World”. 8pm. Tickets from £10. Dobrinka Tabakova in Conversation, 21st July Join the festival’s composer-in-residence as she chats with festival director Clark Rundell. 7pm. Free event, no booking required. Ensemble Deva & The Chester Festival Chorus, 21st July A programme celebrating the powerful emotions music can inspire. Henryk Górecki’s ethereal Totus Tuus sits alongside two

6th July, Summer Artisan Craft Fayre, Festival Hall, Alderley Edge A gorgeous, tastefully curated, collection of artisan food, unique ceramics and glassware, jewellery and accessories to suit all tastes, candles and room diffusers, organic products for your skin, original artwork, photography and cards and some stunning one of a kind pieces. From producers across the northwest. 10am-4pm. Free entry.

very different pieces by festival composer-inresidence Dobrinka Tabakova. 8pm. Tickets £24. Hannah Roberts & Callum Smart, 1st August Cellist Hannah Roberts and violinist Callum Smart perform Bach’s demanding B minor Partita for solo violin, Czech composer Bohuslav Martinu’s harmonically sprightly and lyrical Duo for Violin and Cello No. 2, and work by Kodály. 8pm. Tickets from £10 standing. Gwilym Simcock & The Storyhouse Big Band, 2nd August An evening of much-loved classic tunes from the great American songbook, plus with exciting contemporary compositions. 8pm. Tickets from £10 standing, £24 seated. www.storyhouse.com

Go down to the woods today It’s all about trees at National Trust’s Quarry Bank in Wilmslow this summer. From the 5th to 16th August join them to explore the life of trees with a fun selection of workshops and activities. All events are free, but normal admission charges apply for the venue. www.nationaltrust.org.uk/quarry-bank

28 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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WHAT’S ON CHESHIRE Kids get handson with history at Beeston Castle

Get set for a truly historic summer at Beeston Castle, from 20th July to 1st September. Discover what it was like to live, work and fight in a real-life castle – whether it’s learning to fight with swords or shoot a bow and arrow, or transforming into a little lord or lady, there’s plenty of hands-on fun to keep the kids entertained. And once the little adventurers have put their skills to the test, let imaginations run wild in Beeston’s 40acre woodland park. Events run between 11am and 5pm. www.english-heritage.org.uk

Summer events at Cholmondeley Castle

Teddy Bears Picnic, 14th July The ever-popular family event returns on behalf of the Wingate Centre. Enjoy a fantastic day out with lots of activities. 11am-4pm. Tickets are available for purchase on the day at the gate (excludes any offers) and cost £8.50 for adults and £4 for children. Entry is free for under-fives and teddy bears. Cholmondeley Castle Horse Trials, 27th-28th July Watch competitors complete the cross-

Watch screen stars under the stars

Summer Nights Film Festival will show three films in three nights in the spectacular grounds of Dunham Massey in

Altrincham. On 29th August, the National Trust property will show the 1970s musical Grease, followed by Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again on the 30th. The weekend finishes off with Bohemian Rhapsody on 31st August. The event will take place no matter the weather. Please bring your own low-backed chairs or picnic blankets. Picnics welcome. Gates open at 6.30pm; films start at 8.15pm. Tickets £15.50, children £10.50. www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Mess about on the river in Northwich Northwich River Festival returns for its third year on 13th and 14th July, with dragon boat racing, raft racing, duck racing and more. The dragon boat races on the Saturday will see teams of up to 12 take part to raise money for charity, while on the Sunday teams of up to six will take part in raft racing on vessels they’ve built themselves. To enter a team, visit www. northwichriverfestival.org.uk.

Live at Parr Hall

country course through the castle grounds. From 8.30am. Tickets cost £5 per car and include admission for all occupants. Jazz In The Gardens, 26th August While away an afternoon listening to the Robin Joiner Quartet performing a varied repertoire including music by George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Henry Mancini and more. Noon-4pm. Gardens open 11am-5pm (last entry 4.30pm). www.cholmondeleycastle.com

Say cheese and smile at Nantwich Show

The annual Nantwich Show takes place on 31st July with 10 hours of continuous entertainment in the main ring, including the Jason Smyth Adrenaline Tour’s daring stunt displays. The show also hosts the International Cheese Awards – the largest cheese show in the world – celebrity chefs including TV’s James Martin, a food hall and a shopping and craft marquee. All events are held in beautiful parkland on the edge of the historic market town of Nantwich. Tickets cost £16 for adults, and £5 for children. Tickets to the Chefs Theatre are sold separately. www.nantwichshow.co.uk

Sam Avery: The Learner Parent, 12th July Comedian, blogger and author Sam Avery started his award-winning blog when his twin boys were born. A million nappies and Peppa Pig episodes – and a head-full of hair loss – later, he shares all the lows, highs and hilarious in-betweens of his experiences. 8pm. Tickets from £17. The Very Hungry Caterpillar, 21st July Eric Carle’s creation has delighted generations and is now making its way to the stage. This critically acclaimed production features 75 puppets and faithfully adapts four of Eric’s stories. 12.30pm and 3pm. Tickets from £10. Out Of The Shadows: An Evening with Colin MacLachlan, 1st August The star of shows such as Channel 4’s SAS: Who Dares Wins and Channel 5’s Secrets Of the SAS gives an insight into his career highlights and challenges, and how he overcame them. 6.30pm. Tickets from £25. The Proclaimers, 4th August Since forming their band 32 years ago, twins Craig and Charlie Reid have carved a niche for themselves where pop, folk, new wave and punk collide. The emotional honesty, political fire, wit and sing-along raucousness of their songs have entertained fans across the world. 7.30pm. Tickets from £32.50. parrhall. culturewarrington.org

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 29

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6th July, Party In The Park 2019, Sandbach Park A fantastic evening of music from Sandbach School Big Band and Foden’s Band. Bring your picnics and rugs, and enjoy a relaxing summer event, with a Last Night Of The Proms-style finale. 5.30pm-10.30pm. £10.

On stage at Crewe Lyceum The Dreamboys, 4th July The UK’s most famous girl’s night out is back and hotter than ever. Over-18s only. 7.30pm. Tickets £22-£30.

•7th July, Darnhall Show, Winsford Fun dog show, farmers’ market, shopping tent, trade stands, main ring entertainment, funfair and tractor road run. 10am-4pm. Entry £3.

Rhythm Of The Dance, 30th July Take a trip through hundreds of years of Irish dance and music. 7.30pm. Tickets from £20. The Tiger Who Came To Tea, 3rd-5th August The Olivier Award nominated smash hit show returns. For ages three-plus. Times vary. Tickets from £11.

Tabby McTat, 13th August For children and families of all ages. 1.30pm. Tickets £15.50.

DID YOU KNOW? Tabby McTat is based on a Julia Donaldson book

Roy Chubby Brown, 31st August Roy Chubby Brown is back and is as naughty as ever. His jokes are all delivered with a cheeky grin and perfect comedy timing. 7.30pm. Tickets £28. www.crewelyceum.co.uk

Summer of fun in Tatton Park Gathering by Susie MacMurray, 28th June– 6th October Artist Susie MacMurray presents her new large-scale artwork, designed for display in the mansion and inspired by the work of East Cheshire Hospice. Normal National Trust admission applies (£7 adults, £5 children).

•7th July, Race For Life, Chester Racecourse Join

hundreds of men, women and children to run and raise money to fund life-saving research. So gather your family and friends, put on something pink and let’s beat cancer! Starts 9am. Race entry £14.99 for adults and £10 for children. Under-sixes are free. For race times and to register, visit www.raceforlife.org.uk.

11th July, Geology Walk, Lyme Park, Disley, Stockport Discover what lies beneath your feet, building Lyme’s impressive landscape on this volunteer-led walk looking at Lyme’s geological make up. 8.30am-10.30am. This event is free, but normal National Trust admission charges apply.

Foodies Festival, 12th-14th July See Michelin star chefs and Bake Off winners, plus music from Scouting for Girls, Boyzlife and The Neville Staple Band. There’s also champagne, wine, beer and gin tasting, a Feasting tent, VIP area and Kidzone. Day tickets £19.

Volkswagen Northwest Car Show, 4th August The largest gathering of VWs in the north. 9am-5pm. Tickets £9 adults; under-16s free. Passion For Power Classic Motor Show, 17th-18th August Around 2,000 vehicles, plus autojumble and trade stands. Tickets £9. Traditional Country Weekend at the Farm, 24th-26th August A weekend of traditional English fayre and fun. Noon-5pm. Normal admission applies. www.tattonpark.org.uk

Open-air theatre in Grosvenor Park

Austen arrives at Little Moreton Hall

Enjoy a summer of outdoor performances as the open-air theatre returns to Grosvenor Park, Chester, for its 10th year from 5th July to 25th August. Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night and Henry V, as well as children’s classic The Borrowers will be showing on various dates and times over the season. Tickets cost from £26.50 for adults; under-16s are free. www.grosvenorparkopenairtheatre.co.uk

Little Moreton Hall in Congleton hosts a new adaptation of Jane Austen’s much-loved Pride & Prejudice from 11th to 13th and 18th to 20th July. Performed by Alsager Community Theatre in the courtyard of the beautiful Elizabethan hall (or in a marquee if the weather is wet), the tale follows the romantic clash between the opinionated Elizabeth Bennet and her proud beau Mr Darcy. It’s a splendid display of civilised sparring, and Jane Austen’s radiant wit sparkles as her characters dance a delicate quadrille of flirtation and intrigue. ACT has gathered a large and experienced cast of familiar faces and new talent in this superb comedy of Regency manners. 7.30pm. Tickets £14. www.nationaltrust.org. uk/little-moreton-hall

12th July, Gin Tasting Evening, Cottons Hotel & Spa, Knutsford Join in the fun for an informative evening of food and gin excellence. A guest speaker will guide visitors through each of the gins, which will be paired with a delicious tapas selection. 7pm. £29 per person. Booking essential; call 01565 622144.

RHS Flower Show Tatton Park, 17th-21st July With vibrant displays and stunning gardens. Tickets £34.

30 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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The 2019 racing season continues Make it a day to remember at one of the following remaining fixtures at Chester Racecourse.

Ladies & Gents Evening

City Plate Day

Midsummer Meeting

Family Funday

Ladies Day

Friday 12 July

Saturday 13 July

Saturday 27 July

Sunday 4 August

Saturday 31 August

£ 10 OF F ‡ T ICK E T S


Tickets from just £10* I Kids go free† chester-races.com I 01244 304 600 * Based on Open Course Enclosure admission available on selected fixtures only. †Children aged 17 and can attend any Chester fixture completely free of charge when accompanied by a full-paying adult. A number of ‘Half Price’ and ‘£10 Off Tickets’ offers are available on selected enclosures and dates between Wednesday 8 May 2019 and Saturday 28 September 2019. All discounted tickets are available on a first come, first served basis, until the discount allocation has been fully apportioned or before the specified date: Tuesday 2 July 2019 (Friday 12 July fixture) and Thursday 25 July 2019 (Sunday 4 August fixture).

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Weekend of stars


12th-13th July, Tuxedo Junction, St Mary’s Creative Space, Chester Chester Operatic Society performs big band songs. 7.30pm. £15. Call 01244 375662.

17th July, Voices In Harmony, Chester Town Hall The City of Chester Male Voice Choir hosts the Orange Community Master Chorale and Master Chorale of Saddleback Valley from the US. 7.30pm. £10. Call 07894 509529.

Bluedot Festival returns to Jodrell Bank Discovery Centre in Macclesfield from 18th to 21st July with a blend of science, music and technology. As well as big name music acts – including headliners New Order, Hot Chip, Kraftwerk 3-D and Jarvis Cocker – the weekend features a Wallace & Gromit workshop, author Frank Cottrell-Boyce and biology professor Dave Goulson, plus live science experiments and awe-inspiring artworks. Weekend tickets cost from £159. www.jodrellbank.net

19th July–4th September, Percy The Park Keeper – Nature’s Treasure, Dunham Massey, Altrincham Family friendly activities. Normal National Trust admission charges apply.

Bands on stage at The Live Rooms

The South, 19th July A ninepiece band featuring former members of The Beautiful South, including singer Alison Wheeler and sax player Gaz Birtles. 7pm. £22.

Cydonia Knights, 3rd August Muse tribute band formed by fans for fans. 7pm. £8. The Wurzels, 30th August The haystack-headed, cidersoaked and dung-booted, not-quite-so-young lads play traditional Zummerzet Scrumpy ‘n’ Western music. 7pm. £15. www. theliveroomschester.com

20th July, Shockfest, Whitehouse Farm, Shocklach, Malpas Chester operatic duo Belle Voci appear with fellow The Voice contestants Ruti and Lløren, among others. 6pm-midnight. From £37. @shockfest19

Bouncers at Forum Studio Theatre Comedy tour Bouncers arrives at Forum Studio Theatre, Chester, from 24th to 26th July. The comedy tour takes you out for the night and shows you all the sights of a lads’ pub crawl and Lucky Rosie’s 21st birthday. The show contains adult content. Starts 7.30pm. Tickets £12. www. tiptopproductions.co.uk

20th July, Moonlight Flicks – 2001: A Space Odyssey, Roman Gardens, Chester A screening under the stars to mark the 50th anniversary of the moon landing. 9.15pm. From £9.50/£6. Call 01244 409113.

27th July, Chester Antiques, Collectors & Vintage Fair, Northgate Arena, Chester Find the perfect pieces to complement your home, collection or wardrobe in a fantastic day out. 9am3.30pm. £2, parking £1.

Family fun at Chester Racecourse

Come face to face with prehistoric predators

Family Festival at the White Horse, 20th-21st July The White Horse teams up with the Mini Makery for an afternoon of family fun. Kick-start the summer holidays with arts and crafts, and a selection of stalls, activities and delicious foods. Noon-6pm.

Step back in time to meet the most fearsome creatures of the prehistoric world, when sharks had six rows of teeth, scorpions were bigger than humans and giant snakes would

Pirate Party at the White Horse, every Wednesday, 24th July – 28th August Ahoy, shipmates! Visit Chester Racecourse for some swashbuckling fun this summer! Sport your best pirate outfit, sail

Guns N’ Roses Experience, 20th July A bone-crushing two-hour set, including Sweet Child O’ Mine, November Rain and Paradise City. 7pm. £10.

eat crocodiles for breakfast! Chester Zoo’s new Predators experience is open throughout the summer until 8th September. Usual admission charges apply – online tickets cost £23.63 for adults and £19.09 for children. www.chesterzoo.org

the Roodee on their outdoor ship and enjoy activities including face painting, making your own pirate hat, kids’ disco and prizes. Noon-6pm. www. thewhitehorsechester.co.uk

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 33

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27th-28th July, Open Garden for NGS: The Firs, Nantwich Visit a garden set by the Shropshire Union Canal, with varied trees, shrubs and herbaceous beds, and some wild areas, all leading down to an observatory. 1pm-5pm. £4 adults, children free. Teas available. call 07775 924929.

27th July-1st September, #BEEfriendly CHESTER, Grosvenor Shopping Centre, Chester Help to make Chester the country’s most bee-friendly city. Grab a bag of wild flower seeds and join in the family fun.

Recipe for success at Nantwich Food Festival Nantwich Food Festival takes place from award-winning cheeses. Other celebrity chefs 31st August to 2nd September, when the include the ever-popular Matt Tebbutt, well known to viewers of BBC One’s Saturday Kitchen Live town will once more be buzzing with great chef demonstrations. and Best Bites and Food Unwrapped on DID YOU Channel 4, and Nigel Brown as both Kick-starting the festival is KNOW? the talented Rosemary Shrager, demonstration kitchen compere and Nantwich Food renowned for her cookery school in a celebrity chef in his own right. Festival is a The successful festival is growing Tunbridge Wells and her many TV appearances, including BBC’s The every year, and now brings 40,000 not-for-profit visitors, 220 exhibitors and £2m Big Family Cooking Showdown. Selfendeavour taught chef and former Coronation benefit to the town. It is free to enter, Street actor Sean Wilson also returns including all the music stages and to Nantwich, bringing his entertaining style three days of demonstrations by celebrity and local chefs. www.nantwichfoodfestival.co.uk and creating innovative recipes using his own

Fun of the fair •

28th July, Afternoon Tea & River Cruise, Anderton Boat Lift, Northwich An exclusive afternoon tea experience, including a trip into the boat lift and a journey on the River Weaver. On dry land, enjoy a deluxe afternoon tea in the Lift View Marquee. £25 adults, £20 children (under-threes free). Call 01606 786777.

Blakemere Village in Northwich celebrates its 25th anniversary with a Countryside Fair from 20th to 21st July. Open from 10am to 5pm each day, the family friendly event celebrates the best of our beautiful British countryside and the many pursuits available locally. For more information, visit www.blakemerevillage.com.

3rd August, Summer Foraging Course, Marbury Country Park, Northwich Learn how to identify plants and mushrooms on a two-and-a-half hour walk. Noon-3.30pm. £45.

Explore Narnia author’s views on scripture Gladstone’s Library in Hawarden hosts weekend course CS Lewis, John Robinson & Alec Vidler On Modern Theology, Supernatural Miracles & The Bible from 26th to 28th July. Tickets cost from £160. To book, call 01244 532350 or visit www.gladstoneslibrary.org.

Take the time to laugh out loud in Chester

3rd-4th August, Legendary Joust, Beeston Castle, Tarporley A tournament of strength, skill and horsemanship. 11am5pm. £11.50 adults, £6.90 children. Call 0370 333 1183.

CH1 Chester Comedy Festival brings mirth to the city from 30th June to 7th July and promises to be bigger and better than ever. Comedians from TV and the international comedy circuit will perform at 16 venues within Chester’s historic city walls, including Chester Cathedral and Chester Town Hall. There will be comedy to suit all tastes, such as Mock The Week star Gary Delaney, Jo

10th August, Chester Pride, Castle Square, Chester Celebrating diversity and the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community. The Chester Pride Parade starts at noon, with the main event in the square from 1pm and continuing into the evening. See www.chesterpride. co.uk for the full programme.

Caulfield, Daliso Chaponda from Britain’s Got Talent and ‘The Sinnerman’ Paul Sinha from ITV’s The Chase. Closing the festival is the godfather of British alternative comedy Alexei Sayle, who is appearing at the Assembly Room in Chester Town Hall Shows take place at various times, venues and prices. For the full programme, visit www. ch1chestercomedyfestival.com.

Chester dives under the waves You can journey beneath the waves at Chester Cathedral’s Lego exhibition The Deep from 16th July to 7th September. Come face to face with a 1.75m yellow tuna fish, a fearsome mako shark and a giant squid. Tickets cost £6 for adults and £4 for children. www.chestercathedral.com

34 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Plus: Interactive exhibits and displays, 35 acres of gardens and arboretum, Planet Pavilion Cafe and gift shop, playground and picnic areas, year-round events and activities

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Moments to treasure Charity open day attractions

made at Dunham Massey

88 acres of gardens, Herbaceous borders, Sheepdog displays, charity stalls, machinery, vehicle and heritage skills displays and refreshments.

Gates open 10.30am to 5pm Parking from 10am / Last entry 4.30pm £8 Adults /£2 Children /£18 Family

Family – two adults & two children, additional children £1. Cash only – no cards. All proceeds to: The Countess Charity, Countess of Chester Hospital SSAFA The Armed Forces Charity

Eaton Park, Eccleston, Chester CH4 9ET Tel 01244 684400 www.eatonestestate.co.uk Entrance via Belgrave/Eccleston /Aldford Gates (Coaches via Belgrave Gate, B5445 Wrexham Road CH4 9DJ only). Dogs welcome but must be kept on a lead.

For details on changes to our regular programme due to scheduled maintenance work visit www.eatonestate.co.uk

e Shire_August 2019_97x140mm_AW.indd 1

© National Trust 2019 . Registered charity, No. 205846. © National Trust Images \Chris Lacey.

Eaton Hall Gardens Charity Open Day Sunday 25 August 2019

Go wild in the great outdoors at Dunham Massey this summer. Explore the garden to find Percy the Park Keeper's treasure, spot deer in the park or get hands-on with the rangers and learn new skills at Ranger Fest. These are the places that make us. nationaltrust.org.uk/Dunham-Massey

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Kick start the summer holidays with arts & crafts, stalls, activities and delicious food.

Join us & the Mini Makery for a weekend of family fun!

Saturday 20 & Sunday 21 July | 12 - 6pm | Kids go FREE | £10 per adult

01244 304 650 thewhitehorsechester.co.uk The Racecourse, Chester CH1 2LY

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Showtime at Northwich Memorial Court


10th August, Sunset Splash, Marbury Swimming Club Outdoor Pool, Northwich Merfolk UK introduces its first summer pool party, full of music, inflatables and lots of water ensuring an evening of absolute fun. There is an outdoor lido for two hours to allow all merfolk and their friends to cool their fins. Tails are allowed, but are non-essential. 7pm-9pm. £27.25.


KNOW? My Fair Lady, 10thBoyzBand, 19th Boyzone 13th July Based on July A non-stop 1990s party, the play Pygmalion have had 21 by George Bernard bringing together UK Top 10 the greatest hits Shaw and made singles famous by Audrey from the decade’s Hepburn, this classical top boy bands. 7.30pm. Tickets £23. musical follows Cockney flower girl Eliza Doolittle, with musical numbers such Black Magic: The Little Mix as Wouldn’t It Be Loverly Show, 30th August Energetic and On The Street Where You tribute show that follows in Live. 7.30pm. Tickets £16. the footsteps of the award-

Chainsaw action in Knutsford Cheshire Game & Country Show in Knutsford will host sports, displays and the English Open Chainsaw Carving Competition from 24th to 26th August. There will also be a craft village and a food section, offering products from a range of national and local food producers. One-day tickets are £13.50 for adults, £4 for children. www.cheshiregameand countryfair.co.uk

Open for all at Eaton Hall Eaton Hall in Eccleston opens its gates for a charity garden open day on 25th August. Attractions include 88 acres of gardens, machinery and heritage skills displays, charity stalls, sheepdog trials, music, refreshments and rides on Katie the steam engine. Gates open at 10.30am, with last admission at 4.30pm. Tickets cost £8 adults and £2 children, cash only. www.eatonestate.co.uk

winning girl group Little Mix. 7pm. Tickets £15. Elmer: The Patchwork Elephant Show, 17th-18th August Based on the classic children’s book series by David McKee. Show times vary. Tickets from £13. www.brio leisure.org

11th August, Open Garden for NGS: Abbeywood Gardens, Northwich Your chance to explore this garden in a superb setting near Delamere Forest with a total area of 45 acres, including mature and new woodland, vegetable garden, exotic garden and lawned area with beds. Refreshments are available. 9am-5pm. £5 adults, children free.

14th August– 26th October, From Nantwich To Oxygen, Nantwich Museum A new exhibition following the life of philosopher, scientist and theologian Joseph Priestley, widely credited as the man who discovered oxygen. Tuesday-Saturday, 10.30am4.30pm. Free admission.

Stars and passion at Tatton Park The Classic American Stars & Stripes Show, 6th – 7th July is one of the biggest American car shows in the UK and, for the last 30 years, has gathered together the owners of some of the best cars, jeeps, trucks and RVs this side of the pond. The Passion for Power Classic Motor Show,

17th-18th August is the biggest and best of its kind in the Midlands, and forms a magnet for all petrolheads about to embark on their latest restoration project. You are guaranteed to find snarling V12s, curvaceous red Ferraris, brutally powerful Lamborghinis and a lot more besides.

16th-18th August, Just So Festival, Rode Hall Estate, Scholar Green Step into a wonderland of worldclass literature, arts, theatre, dance, music, comedy and creative pursuits with your family. Day tickets cost £45, weekend with camping £145. www.justsofestival.org.uk

Spectacular summer at Arley Hall Live In The Park 2019, 14th July See tributes to some of the greatest acts of all time, including Believe In Cher and ABBA Re-Bjorn. 5pm. Tickets from £22.50. Sense & Sensibility, 25th July Join The Pantaloons theatre company for Jane Austen’s masterpiece. 6.30pm. Tickets from £14.50. Firework Champions, 17th August Three of the UK’s best firework companies compete

against each other with a 10-minute firework display choreographed to music. From 5pm. Tickets from £19.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream, 22nd August Bring a chair and a picnic for this performance in the open air in the Walled Garden. 6.30pm. Tickets from £15. www. arleyhalland gardens.com

20th August, Mister Magnolia, Stanford Cottage Gardens, Northwich A new adaptation of the wonderful Quentin Blake story. Join Mister Magnolia on his wacky adventures, filled with Folksy Theatre’s bold characters, live music, puppetry and audience interaction. 5.30pm-6.30pm. £8-£15.

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Shire goes to the races and enjoys a day out at the Roodee Place your bets!


he approach to the main gates of Chester Racecourse – also known as the Roodee – is well-signposted from Sealand Road. We showed our car-parking pass and were ushered through to park on the course itself, close to the entrance to the enclosures and paddock. The day’s events began is spectacular fashion, with a gladiatorial procession led by Chester’s Midsummer Watch Parade. Featuring Romans and puppets, it proceeded down Watergate Street to the racecourse, making its way through the enclosures before ending at the Parade Ring, where the Chester town crier declared the raceday open. A troop of Roman foot soldiers then roamed across the course, happy to stop and pose for pictures with the punters to add to the fun.

Food and drink

We had Final Furlong hospitality badges, which gave us access to Festival Village, a private area within the enclosure where a restaurant marquee is set up around a square that contains half a dozen or so private hospitality tents, plenty of outdoor seating and a live band. We were shown to At the Roodee our table, where we were handed a welcoming – and welcome! – glass of pink bubbly and told that house wine and bottled beers were complimentary all day and there was a carvery for lunch. The food was provided by Chester Race Company’s catering team, Horseradish, and was certainly a cut above. We had a choice of roast beef or turkey breast, with excellent stuffing and giant Yorkshire puddings, vegetables and freshly made gravy. There was also cheeseboard that included brie, local Cheshire and blue cheeses, plus a huge array of miniature sweet desserts – our favourite was cream-filled doughnuts with caramel sauce! ‘Owning a horse, the whole buzz that goes with it and having a runner at Chester, my home track, was the start of a love affair that lasts to this day,’ says former England football star Michael Owen

Down by the track

One of the best aspects of the Festival Village is that you’re able to wander right down to the track, where you’ll find plenty of room at the rails just before the finishing post to watch the action from each race – it’s so easy, you can even do it between courses. Horses at full gallop are an impressive sight as they come round the final bend and thunder down the finishing straight, with their jockeys urging them on and the crowd yelling encouragement – all with live commentary over the PA– followed by the finish and shouts of excitement from the nearest winners. Staff with remote betting terminals are available to take your bets, and full TV coverage is available in the Final Furlong Restaurant so you never miss any of the action. It couldn’t

In the paddock

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DAYS OUT be any more conveniently arranged to enjoy the race day. On the day of our visit, all the enclosures were busy and there was quite a crowd in attendance – but access to the Festival Village meant that we had time and space, with our own table all day, and never felt crowded at all.

Up close with thoroughbreds

See all the action

It was great fun to leave the Festival Village and visit the paddock, where the horses are paraded and the jockeys talk to the owners before mounting up and riding to the starting stalls. As each horse walked past, the announcer explained their pedigree, recent wins, form and so on, providing a useful guide to where to place our bets! It was fantastic to be within touching distance of such impressive thoroughbreds in their prime – horseracing really is a sport of beauty and power. We also got the chance to see the winning horses and their jockeys, trainers and owners being interviewed after the races. That the day was a well-choreographed event perhaps should come as no surprise. Chester Races has had plenty of practice after all – the racecourse is the oldest still in operation in the world and this year is celebrating 480 years of racing. Even leaving by car at the end of the day was very simple and quick – we were on the road in no time, heading home after a fun and exciting time. Many racegoers, however, choose to walk into the centre of Chester to explore the city, and the train station is a short cab ride away.

The Romans are coming! The finish line

Smart attire only

Hospitality options At the Final Furlong Restaurant within the Festival Village you can enjoy a twocourse carvery lunch with an all-inclusive bar package, including a glass of prosecco and complimentary racecard on arrival. After dining inside the restaurant, you can leave your reserved table and stroll to the rails of the racetrack to watch the thrilling action in the final minutes of each race. There is also live music on offer. The Final Furlong package costs £190 plus VAT per person. Other packages are also available on racedays at various prices, starting at just £55 plus VAT for the White Horse Garden package. These packages are extremely popular, so make sure you book early. There are plenty of options available when it comes to eating: 1539Restaurant overlooks the course, The White Horse is within the Paddock and The Turf is located in the grandstand.

Watch the runners and riders

For the kids

Chester Racecourse history

Racing at Chester is free of charge for children aged 17 and under throughout the season. During weekend fixtures, the racecourse put on free activities for youngsters to enjoy between the races. On our visit, these included face-painting, a giant colouring-in wall, Roman helmet making and mosaics, archery, giant games, a petting zoo, a giant slide, inflatable wrecking ball, Roman artefacts and trying on armoury.

Chester is officially recognised by Guinness as the oldest racecourse still in operation. Established as a racecourse in 1539 under decree of Mayor Henry Gee, the famous site of the Roodee has seen an incredible 480 years of racing. If you’d like to learn more about the history of the course and view artefacts and objects of interest, there is a free exhibition at Chester’s Grosvenor Museum until 6th October.

Coming up at Chester Racecourse 12th July – Ladies & Gents Evening Dinner will be followed by an exciting six-race card and charity auction. Hospitality packages are available from £70 plus VAT per person. 13th July – SportPesa City Plate Day One of the most popular days of the season, featuring the City Plate, which attracts the very best owners and trainers. Tickets from £12 per person, under-18s free. 27th July – Midsummer Meeting From £12 per person, under-18s free. 4th August – Family Funday Activities for younger racegoers on the Open Course. Tickets from £12, under-18s free. 31st August – SportPesa Ladies Day Eye-catching fashion meets the thrill of an racing. Tickets from £12, under 18s free. www.chester-races.com July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 39

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© National Trust 2019 . Registered charity, No. 205846. © National Trust Images \© an Chle ik.

Local Li es mall Change, ig Difference


Malpas, Cheshire, SY14 8ET Telephone:01829 720383

Gardens Open April to September 2019

Wednesdays, Thursdays, Sundays and Bank Holidays 11.00 am to 5.00 pm (last entry 4.30pm) subject to variation please see website

Dunham Massey une -

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Teddy Bears Picnic Sunday, 14th July

Jazz in the Gardens

Bank Holiday Monday, 26th August

Bring along your furry friends to our Come and while away a pleasant 9th Annual Teddy Bears Picnic in summers afternoon in the wonderful aid of the Wingate Centre held in the surroundings of Cholmondeley beautiful setting of Cholmondeley Castle Gardens listening to the Robin Castle Gardens. Join us for a fun Joiner Quartet performing a varied filled day for all the family. repertoire of music from 12 noon to 4pm at the Tea Room Visit www.thewingatecentre.co.uk for ticket information. Please see website for details. Extensive ornamental gardens, Lakeside Walk and Picnic Area, Temple water garden, Rose Garden, 100m long double herbaceous border, children play area, Tea Room.

dilys@cholmondeleycastle.co.uk / www. cholmondeleycastle.com



DISCOVER: • Founder William Lever’s inspiring story • Port Sunlight’s diverse architecture • Village life - past, present and future


AUGUST 11.30am/2pm £7pp / £6 Concessions All tickets include FREE ENTRY into Port Sunlight Museum and the Edwardian workers cottage.


For more information please call our Visitor Services team on 0151 644 6466 or visit


PORT SUNLIGHT THE VILLAGE BUILT ON SOAP Port Sunlight Village Trust is a registered charity (no 1074713) and a registered company in England and Wales (no 3719976). Registered office: 23 King George’s Drive, Port Sunlight, Wirral CH62 5DX

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Time to dance at Floral Pavilion Here Come The Boys, 2nd & 3rd July Strictly stars Aljaž Škorjanec, Giovanni Pernice and Gorka Marquez battle it out on the dance floor. 7.30pm. Tickets from £44. Dance Fever, 7th-8th July The Danza performers present their annual showcase, with performers from the ages of two. 7pm. Tickets £12.50. Fame: The Musical, 15th-20th July Based on the 1980s pop culture phenomenon, following the lives of students at New York’s High School For The Performing Arts. Starring Keith Jack (Any Dream

All at sea in Birkenhead Six Vessels, an exhibition celebrating Wirral’s industrial heritage and maritime history, takes place at Williamson Art Gallery & Museum until 22nd September. Models and rarely seen historic artefacts feature alongside much-loved and new artwork to celebrate Wirral’s industrial heritage. Entry is free. www.williamsonartgallery.org

Prize pooches at Claremont Farm

The Mowgli Trust Dog Show returns to Claremont Farm, Birkenhead, on 7th July, welcoming humans and their four legged friends. Following the success of last year’s show, which raised £13,934 for Claire House Children’s Hospital, there will be 12 fun categories, including best short-haired, best sausage catcher and child’s best friend. DID YOU The event opens at 9am and KNOW? runs until 4pm. Tickets The Mowgli cost from £3.50 online in Trust has raised advance and from £5 on the gate. Babies in arms go free. £412,806 for www.claremontfarm.co.uk UK charities

Will Do), Mica Paris (Love Me Tender) and Jorgie Porter (Hollyoaks). 2.30pm and 7.30pm. Tickets from £27.50. The Tiger Who Came To Tea, 30th-31st July A musical play based on the everypopular children’s book by the late Judith Kerr, direct from its smash hit West End season. Show times vary. Tickets £14. Down Our Street, 29th-31st August A musical celebration of the life and times of Cammell Laird, from the Industrial Revolution to the present day. 7.30pm. Tickets £18.50. www.floralpavilion.com

Song and dance on the Mersey

1st July–31st August, Relax & Explore Port Sunlight Village Take a chance to explore Port Sunlight. Stroll along the wide boulevard of the Diamond with its rose gardens, sculptures and charming architecture, and wander the tranquil Dell. Trails are available from the museum, which also has a tea room.

6th July, Hoylake Street Fair, Market Street, Hoylake A fun-packed day for all the family, with the action taking place from Kings Gap to Hoyle Road. See great drama, a host of local bands, international ukelele stars and a Victorian barrel organ. 11am-4pm. After 4pm, the music continues in the Ship Inn. More than 50 acts perform at Hoylake Rugby Club over the weekend.

Throughout the summer, Mersey Ferries is hosting a number of evening cruises, with live music from some of the best local talent, a fully licensed bar and unbelievable views of Liverpool’s stunning waterfront.  You can enjoy entertainment from Marc Kenny on 12th July and 9th August, and Callum Mac on 27th July and 16th August. Light refreshments and snacks can be bought once on board. Cruises depart from Seacombe, Wirral, at 7.30pm and return at 10.30pm. Tickets cost £16 per person. www.mersey ferries.co.uk

Get snap happy for Ness competition Visitors to Ness Botanic Gardens are invited to get creative and capture a moment, plant or landscape for the garden’s annual photographic competition. The contest has categories for ages 10 and under, 11 to 16, and adults, with prizes of £40 to £100, plus a year’s free membership to the gardens for all category winners. The closing date for entries is 20th December. www.ness gardens.org.uk

7th July, Sex, Drugs & Queen Victoria, West Kirby Arts Centre Local author and scriptwriter Mike Haskins presents the extraordinary history of drugs in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Find out how heroin was launched as a cure for coughs, the Pope advertised cocaine wine and opium was an active ingredient in children’s medicine. 7pm. £6.

13th July, Step Out For Children, West Kirby Join Action For Children for a stunning walk from West Kirby to Hilbre Island. See seals swimming in the Dee Estuary and raise money for disadvantaged children in the UK. Sponsorship required. 12.30pm. Meet at Dee Lane Slipway. Call 01925 415097 for full details.

14th July, Fun In The Sun Festival, Birkenhead Park Expect music, fun fair, donkeys, stalls and lots more. Money raised will help raise awareness of the rare blood disorder Evans syndrome. Noon-6pm. £6 adults, £4 children. For full details, call 0151 6525197.

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 41

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Folk and jazz at West Kirby Arts Centre


14th July, Pixels Ensemble, Williamson Art Gallery & Museum, Oxton As part DID YOU of Sunday Serenades KNOW? the ensemble perform works by Purcell, West Kirby Arts Mozart and Cyril Centre also holds Scott, plus a new work by Tim Jackson. many classes 2pm. Free event, but through the donations welcome.

20th July, Whitby Hall Family Film Club, Action Transport Theatre, Ellesmere Port An afternoon of film fun on the third Saturday of every month. Grab a chair (or a bean bag), help yourself to drinks and popcorn and enjoy a U-rated movie. 2pm. Free event but donations welcome. 25th •July, Wirral

Bird Club: Bardsey Island, Kingsmead School Hall, Hoylake Hugh Stewart presents a talk on the history and wildlife of Bardsey Island, a couple of miles off the Llŷn Peninsula in north Wales. 7.30pm. Tickets only £4 on the door.

Mike Smith Live with Mono-Tone Jazz, 5th July The West Kirby Art Centre Jazz Club returns with a special week event featuring saxophonist Mike Smith. 7pm. Tickets £7.50. Full House, 6th July The music of this rock band has been compared with that of Radiohead, The Cure and Nick Cave. Hear for yourself at soundcloud. com/fullhousetonight. 7pm. Tickets £6.

11th August, NGS Open Garden, 24 Old Greasby Road, Wirral Explore this surprising suburban garden, which incorporates innovative features designed for climbing and rambling roses, clematis, under-planted with cottage garden plants with a productive kitchen garden. 11am-4pm. £4 (children free). Home-made teas available. Call 07905 775750.

A new festival is set to wow audiences across Birkenhead from 23rd to 24th August. Future Yard promises to ‘reimagine Birkenhead as a musical playground’, and brings a packed line-up to Birkenhead Town Hall, Birkenhead Priory, Bloom Building & Coffee,

and Gallaghers pub, including Anna Calvi, Bill Ryder-Jones, Nilufer Yanya, Stella Donnelly and many, many more. Weekend wristbands cost £44, allowing access to all shows and venues. www.futureyard.org

Theatre with added sunlight

25th August, Olly Chalk Trio, Williamson Art Gallery & Museum, Oxton The finale of the Sunday Serenades season finale sees the return of this young jazz combo. 2pm. Free event, but donations welcome.

The Dell in the village of Port Sunlight is the stage for two very different outdoor productions this summer. From 2pm on 23rd August Folksy Theatre presents Quentin Blake’s Mister Magnolia, a familyfriendly play featuring

John Walsh with Hughie Jones and Keith Price, 3rd August John and Keith, members of Cream Of The Barley, are joined by Hughie, one of the original members of The Spinners, for their ever-popular Irish music night. 7pm. Tickets £10. www. westkirbyartscentre.org.uk

Mountainface, 20th July This alternative folk band have had a busy first year, releasing their debut EP, Let’s Play, and sharing the stage with Seth Lakeman, Merry Hell and Marcus Bonfanti. 7pm. Tickets £8.

Birkenhead launches the future of festivals

10th-11th August, Wirral In Bloom Festival, Birkenhead Park Annual flower and vegetable show with stalls and entertainment, plus classes for children to exhibit. 9am-6pm.

Both Sides Now: The Music Of Joni Mitchell, 13th July As part of the Wirral Festival Of Firsts, Spooky Man James Sills and Wirral’s Izzy Ryder explore some of Joni Mitchell’s greatest songs. 7pm. Tickets £5.

bold characters, live music, puppetry and audience interaction. The theatre group then presents William Shakespeare’s hilarious tale of mistaken identities, The Comedy Of Errors, on 29th August from 7pm. Tickets for both shows cost £12 for adults and £10 for children. For information and to book, visit www. folksy theatre. co.uk.

Played for laughs at priory Theatre group Off The Ground presents an openair production of Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Birkenhead Priory on 25th July from 7.30pm. The production promises to be a proper treat for all the family, and tickets cost £15 for adults and £5 for under-21s. www.offtheground.co.uk

Festival Of Firsts

Community arts event Festival Of Firsts will delight Wirral audiences from 5th to 14th July with music, arts, talks, dance, poetry, workshops and competitions. For the full programme, visit www. wirralfestivaloffirsts.org.uk.

42 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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WHAT’S ON in JUL & AUG 19 Whitchurch Canal Festival

Saturday 31st August/Sunday 1st September 2019 10am – 4pm The festival will follow the tradition of the successful annual boat rallies held on the Whitchurch Branch of the Llangollen Canal, lots of stalls, free entry and decorated boats.

The Lord Chamberlain’s Men - A Midsummers Night’s Dream Alderford Lake, Box Office – 01948 665914. Save money by purchasing tickets in advance: adult tickets are £14 and Child tickets, £9. On the night, tickets are £16.50 for adults, £11 for children. Friday 30th August at 7pm.

Alderford Classic Car Breakfast Meeting Sunday 28th July 2019 9:00am www.alderford.com Peruse the line-up of fabulous motors down at the lake. Cars £2 - Spectators Free

Indoor Craft Fair In the Civic Centre’s Main Hall Saturday 6th July and Saturday 3rd August from 10am – 2pm. Support your local marketeers and crafters, free entry. Café onsite.

WED 18th to SUN 22nd SEP |

Tickets £14.00 - £20.00

For more information about Whitchurch, Shropshire and our great town, What’s On and more, visit www.whitchurch.info PRICES INCLUDE A BOOKING FEE.

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The show goes on in Burwarton


1st-2nd July, Shropshire Music Service Gala Concert Season, Walker Theatre, Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury Eight concerts over two days, featuring beginners to accomplished musicians in brass, ukulele, strings, woodwind, Shropshire choirs and the Shropshire Youth Orchestra. £5-£9.


•2nd July, Bowl Turning Workshop, Dudmaston Hall,

nr Bridgnorth A one-day workshop with Amerton Arts Studio focusing on traditional techniques of turning a bowl from green wood using a pole lathe. Students will be shown how to select and split the wood and process it using an axe. From £70. Call 01746 780866.

The agricultural TV credits include KNOW? Burwarton Show Poldark and Peaky The first ever takes place near Blinders and who Burwarton Show Bridgnorth will demonstrate took place astounding on 1st August in 1891 featuring animals, acrobatics, tricks and stunts, and Ye Olde competitions, a food hall, shopping, craft Redtail Falconry Display, market and demonstrations. which will include interactive This year’s highlights include sections during which children Atkinson Actions Horses, whose can get close to majestic birds.

Musicals delight at Follies Festival •

5th July, Outdoor Cinema: The Greatest Showman, Blists Hill Museum, Ironbridge Inspired by the imagination of PT Barnum, The Greatest Showman is an original musical that celebrates the birth of showbusiness and tells of a visionary who rose from nothing to create a worldwide sensation. Rated PG; all children must be accompanied by an adult. 7.30pm. £15.

A Night At The Musicals brings four of the West End’s leading vocalists, plus The Spinettes and West End Jerseys, to Hawkstone Park Follies on 6th July to perform songs from the stage. Tickets cost £19.50. www. hawkstone parkfollies. co.uk

Until July 6th, Shropshire Art Society Annual Summer Exhibition in St Mary’s Church, Shrewsbury. Open from 10am to 4pm excluding Sunday. Free Admission.

Vintage rally returns to Ironwork Centre •

6th July, Cuan Wildlife Rescue Open Day & Fête, Stretton Road, Much Wenlock Cuan Wildlife Rescue Centre opens its doors for visitors to see the animals in their care. See baby animals and birds being fed, ask questions and take part in crafts, raffle, tombola, bouncy castle and face painting. 10am5pm. Adults £2, under-16s free.

The Transport Rally returns to the British Ironwork Centre near Oswestry on 14th July bringing live music, the famous cavalcade and exciting activities for children. The event is open to the public from 10am to 4pm. www. britishironwork centre.co.uk

Other attractions include the Aldabra Giant Tortoise display, Pentabus Theatre activities, the Panic Family Circus and entertainment in the popular Village Green area. The showground is open 8am to 7pm. Advance tickets cost £15 for adults and £5 for juniors; children under 12 are free. www.burwartonshow.co.uk

What’s on at Telford’s The Place King of Pop: The Legend Continues, 12th July This superb production stars the world’s number-one Michael Jackson impersonator Navi. 7.30pm. Tickets £21. A Midsummer Night’s Dream, 17th July Oddsocks Productions celebrate their 30th anniversary with another high-energy, feelgood family theatre show. 7.30pm. Tickets £15. The Johnny Cash Roadshow, 19th July The only show to be endorsed by the Cash family is back on top form with a brand new production for 2019. 7.30pm. Tickets £23. Mary Duff, 20th July The Irish singer’s career goes from strength to strength, with TV appearances in front of 60 million Americans and reaching number two on the Billboard World Music Chart. 7.30pm. Tickets £23. The Tiger Who Came To Tea, 10th-11th August A stunning stage adaptation of the classic tale of teatime mayhem… expect to be surprised! 11.30am and 2.30pm. Tickets £13. www.theplacetelford.com

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Strong words at Theatre Severn

Gary Delaney: Gangster’s Paradise, 5th July Mock The Week regular Gary’s shows are renowned for a near unrivalled volume of high-class gags. Please note, Coolio will not be appearing. 8pm. Tickets £18.50.

Take a tasty trek around the Marches Ludlow Magnalonga is an eight- to 10-mile ramble and a feast on 11th August. The trekwith-a-difference combines a walk through unspoilt countryside with some of the best food and drink from Ludlow and across the Welsh Marches. This year, the walk starts and finishes at the Shropshire Hills Discovery Centre just outside Ludlow. During the journey, will walkers make several stops for refreshments. At each, you’ll partake of a course of a meal based on

Photography goes wild A new free exhibition featuring the winners and commended entries to the 2018 British Wildlife Photography Awards is currently on at the Footprint Gallery, adjacent Jackfield Tile Museum in Ironbridge, and runs until 10th September. The inspirational images are a celebration of British wildlife in all its beauty and diversity. The Footprint Gallery is open daily from 10am to 4pm. www.ironbridge.org.uk

local produce, washed down with local real ale or local perry or cider, or other drink with a local connection. You’ll also be given local bottled water. The Ludlow Magnalonga, now in its 16th year, is based on a similar event in Ludlow’s twin town of San Pietro in Cariano, near Verona in Italy - the home of Valpolicella, and is organised by the Ludlow Marches Food & Drink Festival Team. Walks start at 10-minute intervals between 10am and 11.50am. www.magnalonga.co.uk

Down the pub with poetry

The flamboyant, political and riotously funny poet Luke Wright brings his Down The Pub tour to Clungunford Parish Hall near Craven Arms on 12th July. Part Essex wide boy, part dandy fop, Luke writes from the sidelines about smalltown tragedies and national farce. Alongside his own shows, Luke is John Cooper-Clark’s regular support act, performing at venues such as The London Palladium and The Palace Theatre in Manchester. The performance starts at 7.30pm; call 01588 660152 for tickets. www.artsalive.co.uk

Experience history with English Heritage Myths & Legends, Stokesay Castle, 20th July – 1st September England’s past is bursting

with tales of brave heroes, formidable foes and weird and wonderful happenings. Head to Stokesay Castle in Craven Arms to uncover the myths and legends, and take part in Hero Sword School, junior jousting and more.

Romans, Wroxeter Roman City, 20th July – 1st September Get hands-on with the Romans for

Simon Weston: My Life, My Story, in My Words, 7th July Words alone seem so inadequate when referring to Simon Weston, who suffered burns to 46% of his body during the Falklands War yet says he was lucky because he lost many of his comrades that day. 5pm. Tickets £21.50.

a taste of what life was like in Shropshire nearly 2,000 years ago. With battle drills, sword skills and object handling, there’s plenty of fun to keep the kids entertained, all set within the impressive remains of the Roman city. www.english-heritage.org.uk

Susie Dent: The Secret Lives Of Words, 10th July A journey into the curious, unexpected, and downright surreal origins of the words we use every day. 8pm. Tickets £24. Mr Stink, 29th-31st July A brilliant version of David Walliams’ tale, packed with original musical numbers. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry… but you might want to hold your nose! 2.30pm & 7pm. Tickets £22/£20. Spencer James, 3rd August The Searchers retired in March 2019 but their lead singer since 1986 is carrying on their legacy with a solo show. 7.30pm. Tickets £17.50. www.theatre severn.co.uk

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6th-7th July, Annual Shropshire Family Vintage Show, West Midlands Showground, Shrewsbury A colossal display of steam engines, tractors, cars, Land Rovers and military vehicles, horses and lots more. 9am5pm. Adults £8 in advance/£10 on the gate. Under-16s free. Call 01948 840921.

6th-7th July, Dragon Boat Festival Weekend, Shrewsbury Racing take place between 10am and 3pm on the River Severn by the Shrewsbury School and Pengwern Boat Clubs. A wide variety of teams are taking part, from work colleagues to family members.

As live at Shrewsbury’s Old Market Hall ENO: The Mikado, 2nd July Gilbert and Sullivan’s irresistible combination of virtuosic wit, memorable melodies and hilarious antics in this muchloved production from Jonathan Miller. 8pm. Tickets £16. Westlife Live Concert, 6th July The Irish band’s Twenty Tour, broadcast live from Dublin’s Croke Park stadium. 8pm. Tickets £19. Glyndebourne: The Barber Of Seville, 14th July Mischief and mayhem run riot in Rossini’s most popular comedy. Figaro, the renowned Barber of

Seville, has a cunning that knows no bounds. 5.30pm. Tickets £16. NT Live: The Lehman Trilogy, 25th July The story of a family and a company that changed the world, told in three parts. Directed by Sam Mendes. 7pm.Tickets £15.50. Glyndebourne: The Magic Flute, 4th August Mozart’s most magical comedy. 5.30pm. Tickets £16. www.old markethall.co.uk

Magical day at Park Hall Farm

7th July, Wenlock Olympian Triathlon, Much Wenlock The 29th edition of the triathlon that has always been one for all abilities, from first-timers up to experienced athletes. The swim leg takes place in William Brookes School swimming pool, while the bike and run legs are on the roads and lanes around Much Wenlock. 9am-4pm.

Mythical creatures abound at Park Hall Farm near Oswestry from 22nd to 28th July as part of Unicorn Magic. The countryside experience park offers seven magical days of unicorn-themed events. Karina the Keeper of the Unicorns and Floss the Fairy will back to provide an enchanting week for young – and older – princesses and princes who want to meet their very first unicorn. There will also be indoor and outdoor play, animal fun, driving for kids, tractor rides and pig racing. The event is open from 10am to 5pm. Tickets cost £9.50 online or £10.50 on the gate. www.parkhallfarm.co.uk

•10th July, An Evening With Clare Mackintosh: After the

End, Wynnstay Hotel, Oswestry Bestselling author Clare talks about her new novel After The End, a gripping and propulsive exploration of love, marriage, parenthood, and the road not taken. 7pm. £8, or £13 with signed book. from Booka, Oswestry.

Capernaum, 12th July In a courtroom a young boy named Zain asks to sue his own parents for giving him life. With a recorded Q&A with director Nadine Labaki. 7.30pm. Tickets £8. Pavarotti, 13th July Ron Howard’s documentary celebrating the life of the beloved opera star. DID YOU 7pm. Tickets £10. Andre Rieu: Shall We Dance? 27th-28th July Andre’s 2019 hometown concert from Maastricht. 7pm & 3pm. Tickets £12. www.kinokulture.org.uk

9th July, Fisherman’s Friends, Whitchurch Talbot Theatre Ten fisherman from Cornwall are signed by Universal Records and achieve a top 10 hit with their debut album of sea shanties. 7.30pm. Adults £4.50, children £3.50. Enquiries 01948 660660.

On screen at Kinokulture

KNOW? Luciano Pavarotti was born in 1935 in Modena, Italy

Big names in nature at Oswestry’s new wildlife festival Willow Gallery in Oswestry, in collaboration with Shropshire Wildlife Trust, presents the inaugural Oswestry Nature Festival from 5th July to 24th August. The festival’s programme of inspirational talks on wildlife conservation from renowned nature experts includes Iolo Williams from BBC’s Springwatch, David Attenborough’s top Arctic cameraman Doug Allan, bestselling nature writer Patrick Barkham, bee writers Alison Benjamin and

Penny Metal, naturalist and broadcaster Paul Evans, rock-climbing countryman Jim Perrin and Oswestry’s own raptor expert Keith Offord. A final discussion will be chaired by the Guardian’s environment editor Damian Carrington. Tickets cost £45 for all six evening events; single event tickets cost £8 each. www.willowgalleryoswestry.org

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SUMMER EVENTS Sat 20 July – Sun 1 September Get set for a jam-packed summer as we bring history to life with a different fun-filled activity each week at: Beeston Castle, Cheshire CW6 9TX Stokesay Castle, Shropshire SY7 9AH Wroxeter Roman City, Shropshire SY5 6PJ

Please check website for details: www.english-heritage.org.uk

The English Heritage Trust is a charity, no. 1140351, and a company, no. 07447221, registered in England.

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Award-winning Markets The Indoor Market is open every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday and the outdoor market every Wednesday and Saturday. Plus we hold the Artisan Market on the last Friday of every month. The new weekly street market has gone from strength to strength attracting some fantastic bespoke stalls.

Culture Music Day

Free family music in the award winning Cae Glas Park.

Lots of different music from around the world.

4th August Cae Glas Park

Guide Dog Event

Oswestry Produce Market

This event promotes the essential work of the local guide dogs giving everyone the chance to pet them and experience a blindfold run all on the Bailey Head.

Handpicked Shropshire based food and craft producers selling the best the County has to offer in the town centre.

12th July – 9am until 3pm

17th August - 9am until 3pm

Chill Out Sunday Oswestry Food and Drink Festival 18th August - 12pm until 4pm 13th & 14th July – 9am until 4pm

Free family music in the award winning Huge town centre event boasting the best Cae Glas Park. Shropshire food producers. Free entry.

Oswestry Balloon Festival and Street Produce Market 13th July – 10am until 3pm Cae Glas Park hosts local football team TNS 24th & 25th August TNS Fun Day

who provided plenty of free family activities.

Reggae Music Day

14th July – 12pm until 7pm Free family music in the award winning Cae Glas Park.


• Trade Stands • Shopping Arcade • Food Hall • Handicrafts • Horticulture • WI • Poultry Display • Craft Demonstrations • Sheep Shearing


HORTICULTURE, TRADESTANDS & YOUNG FARMERS Pre-Show Discounted Tickets available • Children 11 years and under - FREE entry

Oswestry Street Band

21st July – 2pm until 4pm Free family music in the award winning Cae Glas Park.


Ifton Brass

7th July - 2pm until 4pm


Massive event with over 25 balloons launching from Cae Glas Park. Food and craft stalls, live music, street entertainers etc. Free family event.

For further information call 01691 680222 or visit: www.oswestry-tc.gov.uk

T: 01746 787535 E: info@burwartonshow.co.uk

www.burwartonshow.co.uk @Burwarton_show

KATE RUSBY Andy Fairweather Low

and the Low Riders featuring the Hi Riders Soul Revue august 2019

Craft Fair Great Campsite Caterers Singarounds and Sessions Ceilidh Bands Real Ale and Cocktail Bars Workshops Concerts Morris Teams

refolkus for 11-20 year olds P@ndemonium! Children’s Festival T




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Shre wsbur y Folk Festival @shrewsburyfol k



Eddi Reader


plus many more! see website for latest…

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Shrewsbury is blooming fabulous for 2019


9th-11th July, 27 Dresses, Ludlow Castle Stunning vintage wedding dress display in Ludlow’s Castle House.

Shrewsbury Flower Show brings top chefs, gardeners, music and attractions to the town’s Quarry Park on 9th and 10th August. As one of the country’s premier flower shows, it attracts top exhibitors from across the UK. Headline acts include gardener David Domoney, DID YOU TV chef KNOW? John More than 30,000 Torode, people attend Scouting For the Shrewsbury Girls and Flower Show motorcycle

Picnics and performers at Attingham

National Trust’s Attingham Park near Shrewsbury, is to host two outdoor theatre productions in its grounds. On 4th July, you can see The Pantaloons’ unique and funny take on Jane Austen’s Sense & Sensibility, while on 3rd August, Heartbreak Productions retells David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny. For event times and ticket information, visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk.

display team The Imps. There will also be firework finale displays by MLE Pyrotechnics on both evenings. The Food Hall features book signings from John Torode, vegan gluten-free curry by Lajina Masals, Fidget Pie created by Jacob Perry, countryside flavours from James Sherwin and Pirate Ship cocktails with James Hitchin. Then of course, there are the stunning floral attractions.

Quarry Marquee, the main floral venue, is home to the top national nurseries and growers who create stunning displays to admire and inspire. Full-day tickets cost from £25, under-16s are free. www. shrewsburyflowershow.org.uk

12th July, The Sugarhill Gang/ Grandmaster Melle Mel & The Furious 5, Buttermarket, Shrewsbury Hip-hop in the Buttermarket Cellars. 10pm. £22.

12th-14th July, BluFest, Gatten Farm, nr Shrewsbury A new festival of music, togetherness, great food and big laughs, in aid of Empathy For Special Children, which supports children and families living with hidden disabilities such as autism. Family camping ticket £120. Day tickets also available. www.blufest.org

All the fun of the farm Visit Ludlow Farm Shop for the annual Summer Fun Day on 20th June. There will be plenty of exciting things for the whole family, including children’s rides, donkey/pony rides, bouncy castles, face painting, music and

entertainment, games, Morris dancing and vintage vehicles. The event is on from 10am to 4pm and entry is free. www.ludlowfarmshop.co.uk

Annual food festival flies high Cosford Food Festival promises to serve up fine food and flying machines on 20th and 21st July. Held in the grounds of RAF Museum Cosford, VC10 and Hercules aircraft act as a backdrop to the bustling food market showcasing 100 producers of artisan food and drink. The festival is open 10am to 5pm and tickets cost £6 for adults and £2 for children. www.rafmuseum.org.uk

13th July, Newport Show, Chetwynd Deer Park, Newport Bringing together the best of the region’s food, entertainment and agricultural excellence. This year’s event welcomes celebrity chef Cyrus Todiwala, along with local chefs Stuart Collins and James Sherwin. The Bolddog Lings Freestyle Team will amaze the crowds with their gravity-defiant freestyle motorcross Show. Adults £13, children £4 in advance.

On board for rum? A Caribbean fiesta is coming to Severn Valley Railway in Bridgnorth on 13th July. On board a 1936 luxurious first-class carriage, you can sip rum cocktails and enjoy a relaxing day out. The event includes a welcome cocktail and tasting sequence of three rums, plus first-class travel on a single train journey. Tickets cost £50. For more information and to book, visit www.svr.co.uk.

13th July, CBA West Midlands Summer Field Day, Ditherington Flax Mill, Shrewsbury As part of the Festival of Archaeology, the Smithy and offices at the Ditherington Flax Mill is open to the public. Don’t miss the chance to see this remarkable site, and hear about some of the latest work and research around the Shrewsbury area. Free event, but booking essential.

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13th-14th July, Shrewsbury Flea Antique & Collectors Fair, West Midlands Showground, Shrewsbury Between 100 and 140 traders will be selling a vast selection of antiques, collectables, vintage, mid-century and salvage. 8.30am-3.30pm Saturday and 9am-3pm Sunday. £2.50.

Folk, fun and families at Shrewsbury festival Shrewsbury Folk Festival, which runs from 23rd to 26th August , lives up to its nationally renowned reputation with a top line-up and fun for all the family. An eclectic mix of folk, roots and world music takes place every August bank holiday weekend at Shrewsbury’s West Mid Showground. This year sees top names including Jethro Tull guitarist Martin Barre, Kate Rusby,

Andy Fairweather Low & the Low Riders, Skerryvore, Birds DID YOU of Chicago and many more. KNOW? With four main stages and Adult weekend fringe music events, there’s tickets to the something for all tastes. festival cost There’s also a dance tent, from £160 workshops, morning yoga, youth programmes, an artisan craft fair, a food village, on-site camping and glamping, and real ale, cocktail and gin bars. www.shrewsburyfolkfestival.co.uk

Via satellite at Festival Drayton Centre

•20th July–3rd September, Summertime Stressfree Fun,

Westlife Live, 6th July Westlife are back with a highly anticipated reunion tour that is being broadcast to cinemas. 8pm. Tickets £18.50.

Rays Farm Country Matters, nr Bridgnorth Enjoy summertime fun down on the farm. Follow the Fox & Gingerbread Trail, build a den in Fairytale Forest and meet the Farmyard Friends. Bring a picnic and paddle in Rays Brook. 10am-5.30pm, seven days a week. Adults £9.65, children £7.25, undertwos free. Call 01299 841255.

NT Live: The Lehman Trilogy, 25th July A three-act play directed by Oscar-winner Sam Mendes and starring Simon Russell Beale, Adam Godley and Ben Miles as the Lehman Brothers, their sons and grandsons. 7pm. Tickets £13.50

Andre Rieu: Shall We Dance? 27th-28th July André annual hometown Maastricht concert. 7pm & 3pm. Tickets £18.50. RSC Live: Measure For Measure, 31st July When a novice nun is compromised by a corrupt official, she has no idea where to turn for help. Shakespeare wrote this play in the early 1600s, yet it remains astonishingly resonant today. 7pm. Tickets £16.50. www.festivaldraytoncentre.com

Full steam ahead for bank holiday weekend •

20th July, Peter Duke Audience Requests for Organ, St Laurence’s Church, Ludlow A recital where the audience requests the programme. Peter has invited people to submit suggestions by 14th July on paper via a box provided in St Laurence’s. 1pm. Free entry.

20th July, Party In The Park, Playing Fields, Bishops Castle A relaxed music festival, with everyone dancing or sitting on the grass (feel free to bring deckchairs and picnics!), listening to a selection of established and local bands. Children’s activities, licensed bar and food stalls available. Noon-10.30pm, music starts at 12.30pm.

21st July, Oswestry Street Band, Cae Glas Park, Oswestry Free family music in the award-winning town park. Bring a picnic! 2pm-4pm.

Shropshire’s largest steam and vintage vehicle rally, Shrewsbury Steam Rally, takes place from 25th to 26th August at Onslow Park, Shrewsbury Each year the rally attracts thousands of people to marvel at the site of steam-powered vehicles of all kinds in action and on static display. This year there be more than 1,000 exhibits, including steam-powered tractors, cars, historic military vehicles, veteran and classic cars and commercial vehicles, classic motorbikes, vintage tractors and vintage fairground organs and other machinery. The main arena is the centrepiece of the event, and will see a grand parade of steam engines set to music and poetry, plus parades of other vehicles from historic lorries and classic cars, to heavy horses and even a bird of prey display. Tickets cost £14 for adults and £1 for children. Camping is available. www.shrewsbury steamrally.co.uk

Eat, drink and be merry The Oswestry Food & Drink Festival is back for another year, providing a feast for visitors from 13th to 14th July. The free festival provides locals and visitors with a chance to explore some of the best food and drink from the region, from cheese and chilli sauce to jam, marmalades and baked goods. There will also be a number of stalls serving hot street food, from wood-fired calzones, halloumi fries and crepes to sausage rolls, a hog roast and curries. The festival runs from 9am to 4pm. www.oswestry-tc.gov.uk

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Antique & Collectors Fair Berwick Road, Shrewsbury, SY1 2PF Admission: £2.50, Over 60’s £1.50.

1st & 2nd JUNE Sat: 8:30-3:30 Sun: 9:00-3:00 11th & 12th MAY 13th & 14th JULY 19th & 20th OCT 21st & 22nd SEPT

swestry Under NEW Management

As seen on Admission: £3.50, Over 60’s £2.50. Three Large Bargain Hunt Sat: 9:00-4:00 Sun: 9:00-4:00 Halls


OSWESTRY SHOWGROUND Oswestry, Shropshire, SY11 4AB

8th & 9th 31st AUG 16th & 17th & 1st SEPT JUNE NOV

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Have a laugh in Shrewsbury


DID YOU KNOW? There are 28 shows across the fours days of the festival

Shrewsbury International Comedy Festival guarantees chuckles and guffaws aplenty from 18th to 21st July in venues across the town. Whether they’re Edinburghbound or preparing for national tours, all the performers at SIC Festival are at the top of their craft. In the space of a couple

Rocks of ages at Dudmaston Hall As part of GeoFest 2019, a Rock & Fossil Challenge takes place in Dudmaston Hall’s Comer Woods on 1st and 22nd August. Become a geologist for the afternoon and take a closer look at ancient rocks and fossils to discover what stories they tell, with help from the team from Abberley and Malvern Hills Geo Park in the wood’s Heath Barn. Make sure you dress for the weather and wear comfortable footwear. The event runs from 11am to 3pm and normal National Trust admission applies. www.nationaltrust.org.uk

World-class brass in Ludlow The Cory Band return to St Laurence’s Church, Ludlow, on 24th August. The first brass band to be quadruple champions – simultaneously holding the UK National, British Open, European and Brass in Concert titles in 2016 – they have maintained their status as the number-one brass band in the world for the past 12 years. They do this by stepping out of the traditional brass band genre to deliver a tantalising mixture of both blockbusting and beautiful music that amazes and captivates its audiences. Tickets are £16. coryband.com

of hours you could see one of the circuit’s bestknown acts moulding their material and comedy’s next big thing. Sunday’s gala show promises the strongest line-up of comedians ever assembled in Shrewsbury, with some of the country’s biggest names. Performers over the weekend include Dan Nightingale, David O’Doherty, Angelos Epithemiou, Danny McLoughlin and Barbara Nice. www.theatresevern.co.uk

Golden classics at the Steps Sounds Of The Fortunes will bring classic music from the 1960s and 1970s to Bridgnorth’s Theatre On The Steps on 6th July. Michael Smitham and Eddie Mooney bring with them lots of hits and plenty of stories and anecdotes about their many years in the music business. From 8pm. Tickets cost from £14. www.theatreonthesteps.co.uk

Dead impressive artwork on display in Shrewsbury Shrewsbury Museum & Art Gallery’s latest exhibition focuses on the work of British comic book artist Charlie Adlard from 1st June. Drawn Of The Dead features a selection of Charlie’s original works from The Walking Dead comic book series displayed alongside set piece installations created by sculptor Andrew Bryden. Images from cult French comic Vampire State Building are also on display, plus Charlie’s life drawings and original books, Code Flesh and White Death. The exhibition runs until 3rd November. Gallery admission costs £4.50 for adults and £2 for children. www.shrewsbury museum.org.uk

24th July, Teddy Bears’ Picnic, Apley Farm Shop, nr Bridgnorth Come down to the woods with your favourite teddy bear, listen to Michael Rosen’s We’re Going On A Bear Hunt and enjoy a delicious Apley picnic lunch. There will be lots of activities and games, followed by an hour’s play in Pigg’s Playbarn. Tickets are £7.50 each including lunch. Adults’ non-food tickets costs £1.

3rd August, The Makers’ Market, High Street, Whitchurch Showcasing beautiful items and tasty food from the local area. Meet all the unique creatives, creators, makers, designers, producers, bakers, musicians and artists, and drink, taste, shop, socialise, relax, watch, listen, enjoy and discover, while bringing the local community together. 10am-4pm.

3rd August, Oswestry Show, Oswestry Showground, Park Hall Don’t miss the one-day agricultural show that endorses the best of British agriculture promoting local businesses and activities, countryside pursuits and providing a varied programme of entertainment for visitors throughout the day. www.oswestryshow.co.uk

3rd August, Ibiza Garden Party, The Wynnstay Hotel, Oswestry Balearic beats, chilled grooves, funk, soul and reggae. 3pm-8pm. £5.

11th August, Cardington Garden Trail, Cardington A series of beautiful gardens in and around the prettiest village in Shropshire nestling in the south Shropshire hills, open in aid of the Shropshire Historic Churches Trust and St James’ Cardington. Noon6pm. Adults £5, children free.

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17th August, Wartime Farm, Acton Scott Historic Working Farm, Church Stretton Step back in time to life on the homefront at a 1940s farm and dance your cares away with the Blitz Dancers. 10am-4.30pm, followed by evening buffet and dance. Tickets for evening dance cost £35. To book, call 01694 781307.

18th August, Chill Out Sunday, Cae Glas Park, Oswestry Family music in the award-winning tow park. Noon-4pm. Free entry.

24th & 25th August, Sweeney Summer Gin Festival, Sweeney Hall Hotel, Oswestry Welcome to the Sweeney’s fourth annual Gin Festival. Come and meet the exhibitors, sample their wares and buy a bottle of your favourite tipple. There will be live music on both days, and street food and wood-fired pizzas will be in full flow. Both nights close with a spectacular fireworks display. Tickets £11.99 per person; gin and mixers £5. Call 01691 652450 for further details and tickets.

Church Stretton – where the art is Church Stretton Arts Festival presents a host of concerts, drama, poetry, art and workshops from 3rd to 18th August. The 2019 festival promises to cater for all tastes. From strictly classical Schubert and Shostakovich quartets, Elgar and Debussy violin sonatas to more eclectic offerings - fiddle, saxophone, baroque, trombone, jazz, and tango. Performers include the Fitzwilliam String Quartet, Linos Piano Trio, Bones Apart, Classic Rhythm, Blazin’ Fiddles and Passacaglia. Drama is represented by a production of Private Lives and songs, comedy and poetry by

History in the making at Whittington Castle

24th & 25th August, Oswestry Balloon Festival & Street Produce Market Massive event with over 25 balloons launching from Cae Glas Park. Food and craft stalls, live music, street entertainers and more. Free family event.

History comes to life at Whittington Castle, near Oswestry, during the school holidays. From 27th to 28th July the Multi-Period Living History Weekend sees groups demonstrate how people lived, worked and fought through the ages. From 31st August to 1st September, the Beaufort Companye re-enact the War of the Roses to bring a new interpretation of the period. Both events are open 10am to 4pm and cost £5 for adults and £1 for children. www.whittingtoncastle.co.uk

31st August-1st September, Whitchurch Canal Festival 2019 The Whitchurch Canal Festival follows the tradition of the successful annual boat rallies that are held on the Whitchurch branch of the Llangollen Canal. This year’s festival promises to be bigger than ever, attracting more food and craft stalls and bands extending into the Whitchurch Waterways Country Park at Chemistry. 10am-4pm. Free event. www.facebook.com/ whitchurchwaterwaytrust

DID YOU KNOW? Exhibition 2019 is for artists who live The Very Grimm Brothers within 30 miles Free coffee concerts are of Church at 10.15am daily during the Stretton first week, and free organ recitals take place at noon on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday in the second week. Exhibition 2019 opens with an evening reception on the first Monday, and is then open every day until the last Saturday. Performances take place at various venues, including St Laurence’s Church, Concord College and Church Stretton School. www.strettonfestival.org.uk

Family fun at Farmer Phil’s Farmer Phil’s Festival returns to Ratlinghope, near Shrewsbury from 9th to 11th August with its usual eclectic mix of music, including headliners Lindisfarne. The family friendly music festival has two stages and more than 50 live acts, three bars, children’s entertainment, quality food vendors, hot showers and clean toilets, plus free on-site camping. This year’s – the festival’s 21st – features Lindisfarne, Slim Chance, The Neville Staple Band, The Trials of Cato, Michael Messer’s Mitra and much, much more. Weekend tickets cost £90 for adults and £5 for children. Day tickets cost £55. www.farmerphilsfestival.com

Sweet smell of showtime The Sweet Pea Society of Wem holds it last show in celebration of founder Henry Eckford on 20th to 21st July at Stanier Hall. Wem is the birthplace of the modern sweet pea and these shows have attracted over 45,000 visitors to the town over the last 30 years. There will be more than 70 classes for competitors as well as a children’s section. For details, call 01939 234668.

54 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Where history and culture combine The market town of Ludlow in Shropshire has played a significant role in the history of the England/Wales border and in recent years has developed a reputation as a cultural centre


DID YOU in around 1075. This small gallery KNOW? impressive structure and art Ludlow was a was the brainchild of venues. The ‘planned town’, Roger de Lacy, with town also with a grid the great tower and has ample of streets bailey added at later primary dates and the town walls schools, a The Feathers Hotel only being constructed in the 13th century. secondary These fortifications made Ludlow a vital school, a sixth-form college and a border defence in various England/ small hospital, as well as various sports Wales skirmishes and in later years teams and good transport links. meant the town was well placed to At one time the town had three Michelintake advantage of merchant trade starred restaurants and eight AA rosette routes. During the 14th century, the winners, and to this day the town is a treat town was known for those looking for some great for metalworkers, gastronomy. Once you’ve made shoemakers, the most of the plethora of local Ludlow Castle butchers, drapers, producers, the options for mercers, tailors, cooks working off all that excess are Historical heart many. Ludlow is on several and bakers. To this Ludlow is the largest town in south day, Ludlow embraces walking and cycling routes, Shropshire and has always played an and you are never far from the important role locally, being first mentioned independent businesses and artisan producers, great outdoors in this bustling, as early as 1138 when it was known as The historic town centre which thrive in the town. pretty little town. Lodelowe. Ludlow Castle, however, appears to have been built prior to that recording

udlow is a town that wears its history on its sleeve, with medieval, Tudor, Norman and Georgian architecture all perfectly preserved in its pretty centre. This proud past is a testament to the spirit of the locals, who have withstood invasions and occupations over the centuries to create a rich mix of heritage that is celebrated there today. With nearly 500 listed buildings, in ancient stone, timber and traditional brick, it is no wonder Sir John Betjeman once described Ludlow as ‘probably the loveliest town in England’. It’s an accolade that seems well deserved.

Festivals and food

Ludlow’s stunning surroundings

Residents of Ludlow love a festival – and until recently held their own every year. While the Ludlow Festival itself may now have disappeared, there are ample opportunities to experience the artistic and creative side of the town with regular music events, food markets and book festivals amid a packed calendar of town activities. Ludlow is home to a busy arts centre and cinema, the Assembly Rooms, as well as

THINGS TO SEE AND DO Ludlow Castle Castle Square, Ludlow SY8 1AY www.ludlowcastle.com Ludlow Food Festival 13th-15th September www.foodfestival.co.uk Ludlow Assembly Rooms 1 Mill Street, Ludlow SY8 1AZ www.ludlowassemblyrooms.co.uk

56 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Art & Antiques For Everyone, NEC Birmingham, 18th-21st July The largest fair of its kind outside London, with nearly 200 exhibitors showcasing rare, antique and contemporary items including jewellery, art, glass, ceramics, silver, furniture and decorative pieces.

Amélie, New Alexandra Theatre, 22nd-27th July The story of an astonishing young woman who lives quietly in the world but loudly in her mind. Amélie secretly improvises small, but extraordinary acts of kindness that bring happiness to those around her.

Gladys Knight, Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff, 4th July The Empress of Soul will be performing her collection of classic hits, such as Midnight Train To Georgia, Help Me Make It Through The Night, Licence To Kill, The Way We Were and many more.

Kinky Boots, Wales Millennium Centre, 22nd July–3rd August Winner of every major Best Musical award, Kinky Boots celebrates the joyous story of Brit grit to highheeled hit, as it takes you from the factory floor of Northampton to the glamorous catwalks of Milan.

Wales vs England, Principality Stadium, Cardiff, 17th August The 2019 Six Nations champions and winners of the Grand Slam begin their preparations for this year’s World Cup in Japan in earnest as they host rivals England.


Rick Astley, The Jockey Club @ Haydock Park, 20th July The much-loved multimillion-selling 1980s icon returned to capture the hearts of the nation in 2016 with his number-one platinum-selling album 50, and is back again with his new stellar album Beautiful Life.

British Gymnastics Championship Series, M&S Bank Arena, 25th28th July Four days of non-stop action, showcasing the amazing skill of Britain’s best gymnasts. An incredible feast of athleticism with multiple disciplines and age groups uniting under one roof.

War Horse, Liverpool Empire Theatre, 31st July–17th August At the outbreak of World War One, young Albert’s beloved horse, Joey, is sold to the Cavalry and shipped to France. He’s soon caught up in enemy fire, and fate takes him on an extraordinary journey.

Manchester International Festival, city centre, 4th-21st July This biennial event offers something for everything in the heart of Manchester, from theatre, music and art, to city tours, supper clubs and discussions. Albert Square will be transformed into Festival Square for the duration.

UK Pink Floyd Experience, Manchester Opera House, 10th July With top-flight musicians and a world-class crew, this production recreates the atmosphere of a Pink Floyd live show, including impressive video projection on a large circular screen and a stunning light show.

KISS, Manchester Arena, 12th July After an epic and well-documented 45-year music career that launched an era of rock’n’roll legends, KISS’s final ever tour will no doubt feature more of the band’s trademark largerthan-life blistering performances.


Joseph & The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Birmingham Hippodrome, 2nd-13th July Bill Kenwright’s production of Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s sparkling family musical is brought to life in a colourful explosion of joy, with additional new choreography from Gary Lloyd.




58 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Motorsport Overload

2 paddocks the brim wit filled to h range of carsa great track races plus a so much mo nd re…
















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Discover what Shire’s team thought of the concerts, live events and theatre they’ve seen over the past couple of months at local venues OLLY MURS, M&S BANK ARENA LIVERPOOL Every person in the arena to see this sold out performance was excited to see Olly Murs – none more so than myself! He made his entrance through the audience and started his set with Moves – very appropriate, because he can certainly pull some! Olly is a born entertainer. The song is one of the first releases from his latest album, You Know I Know, which is a landmark release for the singer. Not only is it his sixth album, it also celebrates a decade at the top of the British music scene, with two discs that feature the new album and a sparkling hits collection of songs everyone knows. ‘The other album is songs only I know,’ says Olly. ‘For now…’ Highlights include the glorious Love Me Again, Feel The Same (featuring Nile

Rogers on guitar) and the title track featuring Shaggy. Once again Olly has worked closely with Steve Mac, Steve Robson and Wayne Hector. Now established as a judge on The Voice, Olly has five multi-platinum albums under his belt, four number-one UK albums, four number-one UK singles and six number-one airplay tracks. He has more than 17.5m followers across his socials and is The X Factor’s most successful male artist ever. Did I mention that I love Olly Murs? DL

DOGFEST, TATTON PARK As a new dog owner, I thought it would be fun to attend Dogfest, a two-day event in Tatton Park, with my young family, although I was unsure of what to expect. We were greeted with an array of useful stalls

offering advice and tried and tested products in a fun and dog-friendly environment. We enjoyed a kid friendly talk from The Supervet himself, Noel Fitzpatrick, and pet detective Molly (a black springer). Our Newfie puppy Winnie even got to show off her swimming skills to the friendly crowd in the speciallybuilt swimming pool! It was a great day out for all the family and, most importantly, for its newest member, Winnie! SN


THE NEIGHBOURHOOD WEEKENDER, VICTORIA PARK, WARRINGTON This year’s two-day Cheshire festival took place once again over the Spring bank holiday weekend and drew packed crowds from across the country. The weather was mixed, but it didn’t dampen the spirits of festival-goers who embraced the event with wacky outfits and hearty layers of glitter. The gentle start, with some less well-known and local bands, meant visitors could drift in gradually through the early afternoon before the main acts took to the stage. The sloping site meant the view was good for most areas, and with access to the VIP area we were spoilt with a direct stage line spot. Between acts we had massive bean bags and hammocks to chill out in and there were plenty of bars and food outlets so queues were never excessive.

very well cast, with the youngest even looking like Greta in the film version. Maria’s friend in the Before it was one of the most abbey was local girl Libby popular films of all Glickman from Oswestry, who was time, The Sound Of Music was a theatre also terrific. It was a ‘This was a show. The singing in beautifully produced beautifully this production was show, with really produced lovely, and the lead great stage designs, show’ actor playing Maria and the Nazi flags had an amazing at the end were a voice. It was a real stark reminder of the treat to hear all the songs World War II background to the story. JM again, and the children were

All in all, it was a well organised and inclusive event. The highlight for us was George Ezra on the Saturday, who belted out all his hits, as well as some new tunes, building up to a crescendo of Shotgun complete with a dramatic firework finish. Festival organisers have confirmed the Weekender will be back next year, and it’s one festival we’ll definitely be making a point of revisiting. KS

‘It’s a funny time to be alive,’ Angela Barnes mused – and as she delivered her Rose Tinted show on the Festival Centre stage, it proved a very funny time indeed. Having reached her 40s, Angela said, the pressure was off: ‘I know now I’ll never be a severe burn and sexual able to tell whether a poem assault: ‘I wake up every is any good or not.’ And as morning thinking I’m starting a working-class comedian an episode of Casualty.’ unaccountably booked for a In comparison, the political polo club function, she was seemed glowing with rosiness. She created unfazed by a dress code that included a biting image of a ‘a substantial woman in a stars-and‘A confident, fascinator’. But stripes burka eating well-paced if her show felt dinner with Donald mix of the relaxed, there Trump and compared was nothing lazy the dual constituents personal and of novichoc, as about it. She gave the topical’ used in Salisbury, us a confident, well-paced mix with a Müller Fruit of the personal Corner. After three and the topical, studded years of having to write throughout with sharp jokes about Brexit, Angela surely has another three wit and hilarious gags. The personal touched on years’ worth bubbling up inside her. JH treatment for depression, July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 61

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friend and the resulting single led to a blossoming friendship and an album, In spring 2018, Sting and 44/876, which this tour Shaggy made UK was promoting. The audience headlines with a memorable at the Manchester ‘There performance of concert was younger was plenty Don’t Make Me than expected, with of dad Wait at the Queen’s lots of people in their dancing in 92nd birthday early 20s. Sting, at the stalls’ 67, looked amazing celebrations at the Royal Albert Hall. – a handsome man who looks The pair had been introduced by a mutual like he must go to the gym every day! Shaggy, 50, prowled around the stage, interacting with the audience. Everyone enjoyed themselves and there was plenty of dad dancing in the stalls – especially to Mr Boombastic! DL


folk dancing and ballet in black. Incredible value for a three-day festival. DB

Pete the Hat, organiser and founder of the Red Dragon Music Festival, says that once you go to the show you can ‘understand about Red Dragon being a festival for a festival’s sake – it’s all about the music and the fellowship.’ He’s absolutely right. This was a terrific coming together of like-minded people, with ample camping on the Llangollen Pavilion grounds and use of all the facilities there. The line-up and performances were eclectic – a real mix of rock and folk – with bands such as Ethyrfield (worth looking out for these guys – they’re incredible musicians and still only teenagers), Hell’s Gazelles, Backstreet Thunder and lots more, plus

A lavish stage production of a classic story is always appealing, but add in a star in the lead role and it’s bound to be a sell-out! Craig Revel Horwood seemed only too happy to swap his Strictly suit for the frocks and flourish of Miss Hannigan, and he was just as mean as he is on screen! His performance was solid and there was no danger he’d been cast for pure novelty value as he can truly belt out a tune – it’s obvious that his first love has always been musical theatre. The children were amazing, from Annie to the troupe of fellow orphans, with great dance routines, touching moments and laugh-out-loud set pieces.

But although we thought Craig would steal the show, that was done by Annie’s stray dog, Sandy, who dutifully ran to her at all the right moments and even joined in a song – definitely our favourite character! The music and stagecraft was exemplary, with particularly effective set design and construction – and the whole audience ‘revelled’ in the feelgood night out. KS

SHROPSHIRE COUNTY SHOW, SHREWSBURY More than 8,000 visitors turned out to enjoy the daredevil thrills and family fun at the 2019 Shropshire County Show. There were the usual favourite themes of livestock, stalls, beers and wellies, but there was also plenty to keep the non-Country File fans entertained too. The Shropshire Young Farmers Clubs pulled out all the stops to deliver a convoy of creative floats based on nostalgic children’s TV programmes, including Shrewsbury Male Voice Choir, Doctor Who, Thunderbirds, Wirral Pipe Band and Taiko and Fireman Sam. The Drummers among others. absolute favourite was a Visitors lined up for a fabulous Scooby popular Monster Truck Doo float complete ride, crushing cars on ‘Who knew their way, and crowds with spooky house, young bandaged mummy enjoyed the children’s farmers and a moving area, fair, craft and many were so Mystery Machine. food and drink stalls. creative?’ Who knew that Young and old left young farmers were happy, having had their such a creative fill of fear, food, fun and and inventive bunch? farmers. CB The headline act for the day was the daredevil motorbike team Bolddog Lings FMX Display. The IfIf you a show you have have a crowds gasped, whooped, in Wales and the show happening and squealed as the bikers Borders, anywherewe in can Wales performed death-defying send a reviewer and the Borders,–we jumps, flips and stunts 30 and can can your send show a reviewer feet into the air, before flying appear under thecan – and your show back down to Earth to highspotlight on these appear under the pages too! five delighted youngsters spotlight onEmail thesethe details to editorial@ and relieved parents. pages too! Email shiremagazine.co.uk. Other events included a details to editorial@ We look forward to shiremagazine.co.uk falconry display, a parade of hearing from you! hounds, a sheepdog display and a classic tractor parade, while music was provided by

62 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Make a

splash Watersports are soaring in popularity, with more and more of us wanting to try something wet and wild. With summer in full swing, we take a look at the wealth of water-based activities available across the Shire region


round 12.5 million people in the UK take part in some form of water sport activity every year. And while for many people this simply involves spending time at the beach, going for coastal walks or swimming outside, some of the more adventurous among us have been going further and getting wetter than ever before. Approximately 3.2 million people in the UK took part in a recreational boating activity in the last 12 months, for example, and 20 per cent of them did so at least six times throughout the year. Over the same time, around 1.4 million people went canoeing, and recent surveys have also found a massive growth in emerging watersports, such as paddleboarding and kitesurfing.

Dip a toe in

The Watersports Participation Survey is conducted annually by a consortium of leading marine bodies, including

British Marine, Royal Yachting Association, Maritime & Coastguard Agency, Royal National Lifeboat Institution, British Canoeing and the Centre For Environment, Fisheries & Aquaculture Science. Recent editions of the studies have found a huge increase in the numbers of younger people taking part in watersports, particularly among those aged between 16 and 34. These figures reflect an increase in participation that equates to a sevenyear high, and the take-up of watersports activities is showing no signs of slowing. In the Shire region, we are blessed with opportunities to dive in, with a dramatic and accessible coastline on our doorstep, as well as an abundance of rivers and lakes, not to mention some world-first technology being tamed in order to perfect participation. We round them up over the following pages.

64 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Sailing Once our main way of exploring the world, sailing is enjoying a resurgence in local waters


t’s easy to see why sailing is one of the UK’s favourite pastimes. Not only are we an island nation, but we also have vast inland lakes and wide rivers, estuaries and broads that lend themselves to yachting. No nation has won more Olympic sailing gold medals than Great Britain. Team GB have scooped 25 golds and 54 medals in total since the sport was first introduced into Olympic competition in 1900. So if you fancy joining our most celebrated sportsmen and women, now is the time to get on board. Easy estuary Across the Shire patch we have waters for every kind of sailor, but among the favourite spots are estuaries. These long, flat, reliable waters offer a safer start than ocean sailing, and can be generally predictable when it comes to weather and tides. The Wirral peninsula has a great coast for sailing in and out of, and some of the Welsh shorelines offer similar sheltered conditions, while tucked between mainland Wales and Anglesey are plenty of other protected locations that are great for beginners. One of the best spots to start is Plas Menai, the National Outdoor Centre For Wales, where regular clubs or week-long courses are designed to get you on to, and expert at sailing, the local waters. The five-day practical introduction course is a popular choice, providing all the basics and enabling you to be confident on the water. The centre’s instructors will spend the week teaching you how to sail up, down and across the wind, turn the boat and even how to recover when you capsize. Armed with knowledge on rigging, launching, landing and some basic sailing theory, you’ll soon be itching to up your game and take your sailing to the next level. www.plasmenai.co.uk

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 65

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g n i r e e t s Coa Almost unheard of until a few years ago, coasteering is now one of the UK’s fastest growing watersports – and the Welsh coast is the perfect place to try it out

A new way to enjoy beaches


f your idea of a holiday means relaxing on along a dramatic coastline – sometimes the beach, coasteering probably isn’t for you’re swimming in shallow water, other times you’re gently hopping from rock to you. But if you fancy a bit of action on the water’s edge, it’s definitely worth giving a go. rock, exploring rock pools, spotting seals and One venue that has been providing dolphins as you explore the water’s edge. coasteering experience sessions for 15 years ‘Then, for a little adrenaline, there are the jumps – small ones at first to build – longer than most people have confidence and a safe style, all the known that the sport existed – is ‘Coasteering Snowdonia Adventures, where time being coached by your qualified combines and highly experienced coasteering we spoke to Mark Handforth. the best of guide. Then if you want to go for the ‘If you’re visiting the stunning rock- and island of Anglesey and are big plunges, there as some amazing water-based deep-water jumps from several metres! seeking some water-based activities’ ‘If you want to explore amazing adventure along dramatic scenery, crystal-clear water, amazing award-winning coastline and Blue Flag beaches, you won’t marine life and have brilliant fun, go wrong taking part in this must-try coasteering is an amazing way to improve adventure,’ he says. ‘Coasteering is a journey your wellbeing in a breathtaking and

Paddle boarding

completely different environment then join us!’ www.snowdonia-adventures.co.uk

Jump right in

Mark’s enthusiasm for the sport is echoed by Greg Cain from Anglesey Outdoors, where

You can do what suits you

Britain’s fastest-growing watersport is accessible to everyone everywhere – not just on the coast – and is definitely one to try this summer


addleboarding originated in Hawaii impact sport it works nearly every muscle as an off-shoot of surfing and uses in your body and is particularly good for strengthening your core muscles. the participant’s balance and strength to power an over-sized surfboard around lakes, As you progress, you can do paddleboarding in many ways – as a solo large rivers and canals. It’s a great beginner watersport – you can kneel on the board until serene way of gliding around the water, as you gain confidence, and unless you try it in a group race around a set course, on a safari using the boards to access hard-to-reach wild conditions you can make sure you stay upright more often than not. waterways or even as a community event by joining one of the paddleboard clean-up As the water really does need to be flat calm for paddleboarding, operations running on canals. DID YOU lakes and reservoirs make the KNOW? Leading the way perfect setting for a session. Paddleboarding A great place to start is Stand The sport combines elements may follow surfing Up Paddle Board UK, based in of kayaking and surfing, and appear in the Corwen, Denbighshire, which and despite being a lowOlympics

66 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Rafting Swap sails and serenity for full-on action by crashing through the rapids in a rigid inflatable boat

I coasteering has quickly become the favourite sport on offer. ‘Coasteering is perhaps the most exhilarating and adrenaline-packed day out,’ he says. ‘It combines the best of rock- and water-based activities, and is all about making your way around the sea cliffs, seeking out the most fun things along the way, such as jumping into the water, scrambling about on the rocks, swimming across zawns [gaps in the cliff ], exploring sea caves, getting swirled about in waves, climbing tough walls and falling into deep water and loads of other great stuff.

Paddleboarding is fun for all

was one of the early pioneers of the sport and is now a leading paddleboard instructional provider. The business was launched in 2011 by Anthony and Lianne after an inspiring trip to California. Now they not only introduce newcomers to paddleboarding, but have become specialists in whitewater paddleboarding too and host a festival dedicated to this

‘Coasteering is often the highlight of people’s holidays to north Wales and shouldn’t be missed. It’s definitely the wettest activity, but we make sure everyone is kitted out and the cold won’t get in the way of having a brilliant time. ‘Nobody has to jump from a height they don’t want to – you can swim past a challenge if it’s not for you – but you’ll have more fun giving things a go. We take waterproof cameras with us on any activity, so we can capture all the action and share it with you afterwards.’ www. snowdonia-adventures.co.uk

more extreme version of the sport every year. They also host relaxed evening paddles in Llangollen and special sessions designed to let dog owners take their furry friends out on the water. There’s a stand up session for everyone! www. standuppaddleboarduk.com

Land-locked options

In Shropshire, SUP Shrewsbury offers stand-up paddleboarding sessions. The club has aligned with Shire Canoes to widen its watersports provision, and with paddleboarding at its heart the same great range of options are on offer for beginners and experts alike. Launching from the canoe ramp in Frankwell,

f you’re a full-on thrillseeker, white-water rafting is for you. Pop on your life jacket and helmet, jump into a rigid inflatable boat (RIB) with your friends and head straight out into trouble! Whether you want to cannon down a river in full flow or head for the falls themselves, there are plenty of organisations ready to take you to your limits. Best enjoyed in a group, this activity isn’t for the fainthearted and probably best for those over the age of 12, depending on the location, but it is guaranteed to get the adrenaline flowing!

Controlled conditions

Be prepared to get wet!

the club offers lessons as well as casual sessions and hire options, plus a huge range of parties suitable for all occasions. ‘Stand-up paddleboarding is fun by nature, so you only have to add good company and a whole host of silly challenges into the mix and you’re left with a barrel of laughs for all ages,’ says a company spokesperson. ‘A unique session can be boosted by the introduction of our Mega SUP. This eightperson paddleboard may be the strangest thing you’ve ever seen, but it won’t leave you disappointed.’ It’s great for a mates’ day out or even a stag or hen party with a difference! www.shirecanoes.com

Most white-water rafting locations have to wait for the right weather to provide the required conditions. But here in the Shire patch, there is a venue that can predict when the rivers will be perfect. The National White Water Centre, based in Bala in the heart of Snowdonia National Park, was opened in 1995 and takes advantage of the Llyn Celyn reservoir, which was created in the 1960s by flooding existing villages. The release of the reservoir’s waters through a controlled dam into the River Tryweryn provides a white-water rafting experience like no other. The National White Water Centre opens for its white-water adventures on any day the Llyn Celyn reservoir is releasing, offering on average 200 days a year of reliable and impressive rafting each year. Participants can enjoy everything from a two-hour session crashing down the Upper Tryweryn’s natural, Welsh mountain white-water rapids, with enough time to usually fit in four exciting and challenging runs of the one-mile section, to a more laidback taster session or a family friendly four-mile safari. There are plenty of options available, but one certainty – you’re going to get wet on this adventure! www. nationalwhitewatercentre.co.uk

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 67

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Surfing Ever since the Beach Boys made surfing sound so appealing back in the 1960s, our coastal locations have been visited by California dreamers hoping to catch a wave – and it’s easy to see why


urfing is a fantastic sport for body and the mind. In addition to the physical benefits, such as strengthening your core stability, shoulders and back, many people find riding the waves helps to reduce stress and improve mental wellbeing. The north Wales coastline

Adventure Parc Snowdonia

is home to many great spots for surfers, but even inland we have access to some worldclass – and world-first – surfing options.

Man-made magic

Adventure Parc Snowdonia in Conwy – formerly known as Surf Snowdonia – is an inland pioneering venue created on the site of a former aluminium rolling and casting works which closed in 2007. Recycling was a major part of the build, with vast amounts of material reused and 100 years of industrial waste cleaned up in the process. The result is a 300-metre inland surf lagoon that delivers the longest man-made surfable waves on the planet. The two-metre high waves peel for a massive 150 metres, which on water that moves at around six

metres per second adds up DID YOU to an exhilarating ride KNOW? of just over 20 seconds Adventure Parc every single minute. Snowdonia features the world’s The amazing first artificial technology involved surfing lake means the lagoon can simultaneously produce 2m, 1.2m and 70cm waves, offering different areas of the lagoon to suit all abilities. The set-up is particularly well-suited to beginners, because missing a wave isn’t such an issue when another one will be along in a minute. You can go for a try-out or sign up for a course – accommodation is also available if you want to make a break of it. adventureparcsnowdonia.co.uk

Windsurfing & kitesurfing If you want to combine the skill and exhilaration of surfing with a little wind power, have a go at one of these action-packed options


hether you aspire to ride big waves, compete in a race, sail freestyle or just surf for fun, there are plenty of places to try windsurfing locally. West Kirby Marine Lake on the Wirral offers excellent facilities, reasonable prices and expert training from Wirral Sailing Centre. Beginners are welcome, but the lake has also been the location of many speed windsurfing records, as the natural wind tunnel of the Wirral peninsula makes it a perfect spot to try your hand at the sport. www. wirralleisure.co.uk/wirral-sailing-centre

Let’s go fly a kite

If you have the arm strength for it, you may want to try kitesurfing. The sport takes place on open areas of water, which can be shallow

or deep, flat or bumpy, in winds between eight and 50 knots. The idea is to fly the kite to produce enough power to pull yourself along the surface of the water, and then use the surf, waves or your body to take off in all manner of fancy jumps, swoops and tricks. Kitesurfers are a common sight along much of the British coast, but one spot where they’re particularly prominent is around Rhosneigr on Anglesey, where two sandy bays divided by a rocky outcrop offer options to take to the water in almost any wind direction. Funsport on Beach Terrace is a great place to dip your toe in the water, with everything from full courses to individual introduction lessons – with all the kit available to hire too. www.funsportonline.co.uk

68 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Island paradise

Few locations in the Shire region evoke the same response as the isle of Anglesey, which has been a favourite destination for thousands of people for generations


any of us who are fortunate enough to live close to Anglesey will have visited the island, perhaps regularly. Some of you will own a holiday retreat there and a few will even be lucky enough to call this stunning island home. One thing is for sure though – it has been a firm favourite with visitors and residents alike for centuries, and the appeal of island life is still as strong today as it was when our ancestors first landed on Anglesey’s shores. Throughout history there has been a steady stream of incomers – from the first inhabitants whose prehistoric evidence is still being uncovered, to Roman, Norse, Saxon, Viking and Druid communities that have all been associated with the isle. Links to its prominent past are still visible, with stately homes and stunning castles decorating the outstanding natural environment.

Buildings of beauty

Creative spaces

Anglesey has long One such place that is well worth a visit been a favourite is Plas Newydd, the ancestral home of with artists and the Marquesses of photographers Anglesey and today a – often drawn beautifully preserved Artists flock here to the dramatic grand manor house landscapes and beautiful light the island and gardens owned offers. So it is no surprise that it is also by the National home to several artists’ retreats and galleries Trust. Built in 1470, celebrating the work of local creatives. it is remarkably Plas Newydd One such venue is Oriel Môn, Llangefni. intact, having been Visitors to this art gallery and modified and developed sympathetically DID YOU museum are able to explore the over the years, and enjoys stunning KNOW? views across the Menai Strait. The Menai Strait island through a wide range of artwork by renowned artists Another superb structure on was carved by such as Sir Kyffin Williams, Anglesey is Beaumaris Castle, built glaciers flowing from Charles Tunnicliffe, Harry by Edward I over a 45-year period Snowdonia Hughes Williams and the as funding delays and distractions of Massey sisters. There are also other invasions and battles kept getting exhibitions illustrating the remarkable in the way, and never entirely finished. Well tale of Anglesey’s past and introducing worth the wait however, the ruins are still visitors to its an incredible testament to the architecture superb heritage. of the time and are now classed as a Of course, no World Heritage Site, drawing historians visit to Anglesey and castle fans from around the world. is complete without a trip to several of The Menai Strait its amazing and inspiring beaches, and whether you prefer the cosy coves of Porth Dafarch, the action-packed shores of Rhosneigr or the vast expanses of Newborough, there’s a coastline for everyone on this small but perfectly formed island. Beaumaris Castle

Animal attractions

Those seeking more active attractions will enjoy Anglesey Sea Zoo, an aquarium and independent research and Pili Palas marine education centre on the south coast. It was opened in 1983 when the owners of a lobster shop realised the lobster tanks had become attractions in themselves, and now displays more than 150 native species. Also nearby is Pili Palas Nature World, home to a small zoo, incuding a Benllech beach vast array of butterflies, bugs, meerkats, small mammals, donkeys and several other creatures to keep visitors entertained. THINGS TO SEE AND DO Plas Newydd House & Garden Llanfairpwllgwyngyll LL61 6DQ Beaumaris Castle Castle Street, Beaumaris LL58 8AP Anglesey Sea Zoo www.angleseyseazoo.co.uk Pili Palas Nature World www.pilipalas.co.uk Oriel Môn Rhosmeirch, Llangefni LL77 7TQ

70 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Open daily: 10.00am to 5.00pm

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SADDLE UP TO HELP NETWORK GET ON TRAX A local initiative to create a walking, cycling and riding network in north Montgomeryshire is looking for support and hoping active Shire readers will get behind its plans


group of outdoors-loving people roads, grass verges and the like to make in Montgomeryshire has begun a comprehensive network and connect with the National Cycle Network, the process of linking up existing routes to create a the Montgomery canal and more. ‘The joined-up network for the The ultimate aim is to create benefits of a a circular route for the area, area’s walkers and bikers. The signed route developed wherever there is project, known as MontytraX, and safe interest in such a route. The tracks has the partnership support off-road of national cycling charity available will eventually be graded SUSTRANS and Powys County according to difficulty and type. cycling are Council, as well as most of the immense’ community councils in north A boost for business Montgomeryshire. ‘The benefits of developing a The group aims to promote existing signed route and, where possible, safe walking and cycling routes and bridle off-road cycling and walking routes paths in the area, as well as investigating are immense,’ says Shan Mayor, who whether it can develop new routes is spearheading the campaign. ‘Powys using parts of the old railway line, back and the Welsh Assembly are keen to

promote cycling and walking in order to enable us to travel more freely by bike or on foot but also to capture a part of the cycling tourism market. It can bring in much-needed money to our area, provide business opportunities and improve our own quality of life.’ The scheme is currently undergoing a feasibility study and the organisers are keen to hear from supporters across the area to help with this, as well as future stages of the project. Individuals, families, businesses or organisations in the area – which covers Llanfyllin, Llanfair Caereinion, Welshpool and the surrounding countryside – are urged to get in touch or send their support to montytrax@btinternet.com.

WALKING THE WIRRAL With summer in the air, our regular walking writer Clive Williams heads for the coast with a family-friendly tour of the Wirral peninsula


was inspired to suggest walking in Wirral Country Park after spending a wonderful day there last summer. Whether you are walking, cycling or just getting out to explore the great outdoors, this walk offers something for everyone. It starts not far from the seaside at Thurstaston, which – believe it or not – is the only coastal resort in Cheshire. A coastline walk high above the Dee estuary, it takes you to quiet beaches with a refreshing sea breeze to leave you with a memorable experience of this corner of the peninsula. The setting is stunning, with the north Wales coastline in view across the estuary before you and the Clwydian Hills

making a scenic backdrop. On a clear day Talacre Lighthouse, the northernmost point of mainland Wales, is visible.

allow you to set up a barbecue in a safe environment enjoying sea views. Coastal walking is possible providing you take care with the tide, but the Wild Wirral cliff path above undoubtedly provides the best views. Paths also wind their In the quieter areas, badgers and way down the cliffs to the small foxes hunt, and there are at DID YOU least 10 types of butterflies to beaches and coves below. KNOW? be seen here in the summer. A highlight for walkers and Wirral Country Park became Dense hedges provide food cyclists is the 12-mile Wirral Way, the UK’s first which is incorporated into the and nesting sites for birds, designated and there are amazing nature park. This follows the disused country park trails that offer some great track of the former Birkenhead in 1973 photographic opportunities railway line from Hooton to too. Start at the visitor centre West Kirby. You can plan a walking or cycling route to suit various fitness (postcode CH61 0HN), which provides plenty of activities to keep you and ability levels – and whatever you occupied, as well as self-guiding maps choose it will be a great day out. for the trails. I was impressed by the barbecue and picnic areas, which For more see www.visitwirral.com

72 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Penralley House Historic Luxury Bed and Breakfast in the heart of Wales Lyons St Mary’s L u x u r y L o d g e Pa r k

A beautiful Georgian town house built about 1774 and extended in 1876, Penralley House has a striking façade of local granite, and a stunning Victorian yellow brick rear overlooking a lush large garden. It has been lovingly restored by Steve and Karen, retaining many of the original features to create a welcoming and relaxing environment. The house has a lovely garden with views to the Elan Valley and surrounding countryside. The Elan Valley reservoirs and estate are within 3 miles and

Gigrin farm, the Red Kite feeding station a few minutes drive along South Street. The rural area has much of interest to offer both those wanting a relaxing quiet break to those who want to experience one of the many outdoor challenges, take a look at our local area page for more information. This beautiful part of mid Wales can cater for all. The West Coast, Cambrian Mountains, Brecon Beacons, and Llanidloes are all within driving distance.

tel: 01597 811868 email: info@penralleyhouse.com www.penralleyhouse.com Penralley House, South Street, Rhayader, LD6 5BH

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Holidays Coast or country?


hen buying the holiday home of your dreams, your first priority should always be the location. How far do you wish to travel from home? Would you prefer a peaceful country retreat or a coastal holiday with entertainment Treetops Caravan Park, Flintshire and activities for children? Does the park beautiful vistas across the Betws yn Rhos allow dogs? Is there somewhere to walk valley, a tranquil and peaceful them on sunny afternoons? location available to use for There is lots to consider, and ‘Treetops up to 12 months of the year. Lloyds Caravan & Lodge Sales Caravan Treetops Caravan Park in can help you in your search. Park enjoys With hundreds of private Gwespyr, Flintshire, is a peaceful, beautiful family-friendly park on a hilltop, parks across north Wales and views across which enjoys beautiful views Cheshire, it is sure to find your the Irish sea’ across the Irish sea and the dream holiday destination. Dee Estuary. The park features Sunnyvale Caravan Park an outdoor children’s play area, an in Kinmel Bay, Conwy, has a 12-month outdoor gym and a handy launderette, season and sea views across the north and is just a short drive from the Welsh coast, making it a great choice for those with boats who wish to be right golden beaches of Talacre, with its sand dunes and famous lighthouse. next to the sea, surrounded on three Whether it be coast or country, sides by the mouth of the River Clwyd. history or adventure, Lloyds Caravan & Meanwhile, Bryn Defaid Lodge Park Lodge Sales can find the perfect park in Llysfaen is nestled in the Welsh for you. www.lloydscaravans.co.uk countryside outside Colwyn Bat, with

Own a slice of idyllic life


lawrbetws Caravan Park, set in 14 acres of idyllic countryside with panoramic views of the rugged Welsh Berwyn mountains, is a quiet family-run park in the heart of rural north Wales. If you’re looking for an authentic country caravan holiday with scenery, wildlife and a rural lifestyle, you’ll appreciate the setting at Llawrbetws, positioned between Snowdonia National Park, the Clwydian Range and Dee Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Llawrbetws is an excellent base from which to explore north Wales, as you can get to most notable destinations within 30 minutes. The site features 70



et away from it all this summer at Morfa Lodge Holiday Park. The family owned and operated park occupies the perfect location in the foothills of Snowdonia, within an area of unspoilt, beautiful parkland that offers excellent facilities and served is by a team of helpful and dedicated staff. The park has holiday home lodges for hire and pitching sites for touring caravans. If you fall under the spell of the site, there are also plenty of homes available for sale, so you can make that Morfa Lodge Holiday Park holiday

fully serviced pitches, each with mains electricity, water and Stunning Llawrbetws piped gas. The majority of the pitches have farreaching views of the mountains; a new development is being launched this year, so those who get in early will be able to choose their own perfect pitch with fantastic views. There are sites available and holiday homes to buy – new and used – for every budget, with finance options available. www.llawrbetws.co.uk



f you’re taking to the region’s waterways by canal boat, you should make a point of visiting some of the local sites of engineering and industrial significance – and you’d struggle to find anywhere more impressive than the Anderton Boat Lift in Cheshire. This incredible attraction is known as the ‘Cathedral of the Canals’ for a very good reason. Not only does it still do the job it was designed to do – lifting boats and barges 50ft from the River Weaver Navigation to the Trent & Mersey Canal – but it does so with the most ingenious and endearing character of any structure on the canal system. The boat lift also offers the intrepid visitors the opportunity to access the very top of the workings – not a trip for the faint-hearted or those with no head for heights! As well as being one of the ‘seven wonders of the waterways’, the boat lift’s visitor centre, coffee shop, play area and the nearby Northwich Woodlands make it unmissable.

throughout the day and investment and keep coming back time into the evening, with bar meals served daily. and time again. Visitors can During the peak holiday season, choose between entertainment is put on the two heated outdoor swimming to provide fun family nights and fill the dance pools, with patio areas and allocated floor. Popular hog roast evenings offer a play areas for the more relaxed evening children, while the shop on the There are two pools on site at Morfa Lodge. The site is close to park offers a wide many local attractions, including range of groceries, fresh produce, newspapers and gifts. Morfa Lodge has Caernarfon Castle, Bangor Cathedral a large number of facilities available and the stunning Aber Falls, making for guests of all ages and there is it a great base for exploring this beautiful corner of Wales. free WiFi across the whole site too. There are a range of lodges The Clubhouse has a large family room with an adjacent games room, which available to purchase or hire. With plots available in unrivalled locations, has a range of amusement machines Morfa Lodge can offer the perfect and a pool table. Those over the age of 18 can also enjoy the Lounge Bar holiday idyll. www.morfalodge.co.uk July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 75

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Luxury on Nefyn Bay


here has never been a better time to discover the new holiday homes available as part of a £10m development stretching along the spectacular Llyn Peninsula. Tucked away beyond Snowdonia’s craggiest peaks, with the Irish Sea on one side and Cardigan Bay on the other, Llyn has a distinctive, unspoilt character that draws walkers, wakeboarders and dinghy sailors, while Bardsey Island at its tip is a haven for wildlife. This is the perfect spot in which to secure a brand new, hassle-free holiday property with a 10-year build guarantee and a 999-year lease at Nature’s Point, Pistyll. The location has fantastic views of the sparkling Nefyn Bay and the Irish Sea; you can see Anglesey on a clear day and the site is framed by the dramatic Snowdonian mountains. Nature’s Point sits on a historic stretch of coastline that is also home

to St Beuno’s Church, which dates back to the 12th century and lies on the pilgrimage route to Ynys Enlli. Walkers will also enjoy the fact that the Wales Coastal Path is on the doorstep, with access to awe-inspiring trails that take in the true beauty of the coastline. There are 25 new luxury holiday properties available, sitting alongside the existing 10 coastal cottages operated by Together Travel Co. These range from two-bedroom penthouses to a palatial five-bedroom luxury cottage,

Own a brand new holiday property

with prices starting at £299,000. Make one of them your holiday heaven now and look forward to future lazy days in this idyllic spot. www.naturalland.co.uk


or a real getaway while holidaying on the Llyn Peninsula, take a trip to Bardsey Island and play castaway for the day. The island, which lies two miles across Bardsey Sound at the tip of the Llyn Peninsula, is 1.5 miles long and at its widest point is just over half a mile across. The island mountain rises to a height of 167 metres and the whole island has a surface area of just 180 hectares, most of which is farmland. The island was purchased by the Bardsey Island Trust in 1979 and is now managed by the trust with advice from Natural Resources Wales and CADW. It is a designated National Nature Reserve, Site of Special Scientific Interest and is in the Llyn Peninsula Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. The island is also of international importance and has been listed as a Special Area of Conservation for its habitats and species, as well as a Special Protection Area because of its breeding birds.



orthfield Holiday Park is a small, peaceful caravan and chalet park on the edge of the seaside village of Borth, boasting 13 comfortable, fully equipped caravans Northfield Holiday Park, Borth and two spacious timber chalets, both of which have beautiful views of Cardigan Bay. It’s located just six miles from the university town of Aberystwyth and half an hour’s ‘You can enjoy drive from the Dyfi Valley, declared a wonderful ‘biosphere’ by Unesco and home to some of the finest examples of special views across landscapes and wildlife areas in Europe. to Bardsey A five-minute walk from Northfield’s Island’ accommodation can take you to a quiet cove to snorkel or fish, or to the main safe beach of sand, rock pools and dunes. There are several public footpaths in the area, including the coastal path through Clarach to Aberystwyth and via pastureland to the neighbouring villages of Talybont, Dolybont, Llandre

and Taliesin. Immediately opposite Northfield is a path leading to a small, sheltered cove, with steps leading up to a war memorial on the cliff top, from where you can enjoy wonderful views across the bay to Bardsey Island. The team at Northfield Holiday Park will ensure everything possible is done to give you an enjoyable holiday. Visit Wales inspection marks of 100 per cent were given for cleanliness, service and welcome again this year, and the thoughtful landscaping and mass planting of both indigenous and semi-tropical plants has made Northfield the prettiest and most colourful park in the area. Wild flowers grow in harmony with the planted environment and there is an abundance of butterflies. northfield Comfortable accommodation holidays.co.uk

76 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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READY FOR RELAXATION? If you’re looking for a holiday that will truly take you away from the hustle and bustle, you’d be hard pushed to find a more perfect break than on board a canal boat


hether you’re an experienced canal boater or a complete novice, the highly qualified staff at Anglo Welsh Waterway Holidays can offer you the ultimate relaxing holiday with their fleet of beautiful boats. The team will take you through everything you need to know to operate a canal boat and once your handover is complete, you can set off on your own narrowboat holiday adventure, travelling at your own pace, watching out for wildlife and stopping off to enjoy canalside pubs and exploring villages, towns and cities along your route. Whether you want to test the waters with a short break on a Perfect for all the family relaxing route suitable for beginners or take a longer, more challenging holiday on one of the many local canal barge holiday circuits, the experts at Anglo Welsh can help you decide which holiday will work best for you. The company has a fleet of 160 luxury narrowboats available from 10 bases across England and Wales, including a brand new base at Whixall Marina in Shropshire. All its canal boats are unique, ranging in size from 32ft to 70ft and providing accommodation for between two and 12 people. On board you’ll find all the comforts of home to make your floating holiday berth a cosy and comfortable place to be. There are towels, bedding, central heating, flushing toilets, showers, a TV/DVD player and WiFi, as well as a well-equipped kitchen complete with an oven, fridge, cooking utensils and crockery. www.anglowelsh.co.uk

Enjoy a day trip with friends

Make a day of it

If you fancy the idea of taking a boat out but aren’t sure about committing to a whole holiday, a great option is a short-term rental such as a trip available from ABC Day Boat Hire. The team’s fleet can be Expert tuition is given before you set out collected at various pick-up points across the UK – the most handy for Shire readers being the bases at Whitchurch and Ellesmere in Shropshire and Anderton in Cheshire. At either venue, experts will be on hand to guide even complete novices ‘If you aren’t through the operation of sure about one of the lovely barges. committing For tranquillity and to a whole beauty, take advantage of holiday, take Whitchurch Marina day boat a boat for hire and meander along the Llangollen and Shropshire the day’ Union Canals. A day trip from Whitchurch will take you on a beautiful Llangollen Canal lock-free stretch of the Llangollen Canal. Alternatively, starting from Blackwater Meadow near the Ellesmere arm of the Llangollen Canal, you can either travel east towards Prees or west towards Owestry, offering five to six hours’ cruising. If you choose to pick up a boat from the Anderton base, you’ll have easy access to Cheshire, the remote and beautiful Leeds & Liverpool Canal and the Trent and Mersey. www.abcdayboathire.com Another great option is Cheshire Cat Narrowboats, a family-run firm based at Overwater Marina, Audlem, on the Shropshire Union Canal. It is a stunning location, and only three hours cruising time to the Llangollen Canal. Cheshire Cat’s Silver Moon crosses The fleet includes boats the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct for a couple as well as family-sized vessels, and a new member to the Cheshire Cat collection, Southern Cross, with berths for up to eight people and two separate shower rooms – perfect for a group get together or family holiday. www.cheshirecatnarrowboats.co.uk July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 79

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Colwyn Bay Bay of plenty

Once just a small cluster of farms and homes, Colwyn Bay has expanded to become to second largest community in north Wales, and it’s easy to see why so many people are happy to call the town home


s seaside resorts go, it’s hard to beat Colwyn Bay. The pretty town is halfway along the north Wales coast and has an expanse of sandy beach and promenade frontage where you can enjoy an amble, as well as a commercial centre to fulfil the needs of locals and visitors alike. Its shore is a natural draw, even though the Victorian pier was demolished in 2018 when it became unsafe and too costly to restore. This was a controversial decision, but it doesn’t seem to have had the adverse effect on the town some feared DID YOU – in fact, if anything, KNOW? it has made the sands Colwyn is one of more accessible.

Star quality

Wales’s warmest spots thanks to ‘foehn winds’

centre and extensive sports facilities – most famously the Eirias Stadium, also known as Stadiwm Zip World. This incredible venue, which is the focus of local rugby action, was transformed with a £6.5m redevelopment in 2011 which opened it up to countless large-scale sporting and televised events, as well as music and festival experiences. For the past eight years it has hosted The Promenade the Access All Eirias event, which sees crowds of 15,000 pack the stadium to enjoy performances by stars such as Elton John and Tom Jones.

Well loved by its 30,000 or so residents, Colwyn Bay is a regular Britain In Bloom winner and has several well-kept and attractive parks and gardens. The best known of these is the stunning 50-acre Eirias Park, which was created by the local council in the 1920s. Home to a substantial boating lake, it has been a popular spot throughout the decades and today also features the town’s leisure centre, a conference Stadiwm Zip World

The beautiful bay

year and some top-notch productions for families, music lovers and thespians. More active visitors to the town should check out Porth Eirias on the promenade, where activities such as jet skiing, waterskiing, sailing and paddle boarding are available as lessons or taster sessions, while those looking to simply relax in beautiful surroundings will appreciate a trip to explore the nearby stunning Bodnant Garden.

Animal attraction

Another popular attraction with visitors to Colwyn Bay is the Welsh Mountain Zoo, which is located on a hillside overlooking the town. The 37-acre site was opened in 1963 and is home to an impressive collection of creatures great and small. With everything from meerkats, tigers and penguins to rare snow leopards, the Welsh Mountain Zoo zoo makes up in quality for what it lacks in scale, and a visit can feature many of the animal highlights without the vast distances needed to be covered in some other zoos. Culture in the town is boosted by the Theatr Colwyn venue, which offers a rich mix of theatre and cinema throughout the

Bodnant Garden THINGS TO SEE AND DO Eirias Park and Stadiwm Zip World Eirias Road, Colwyn Bay LL29 7SP Welsh Mountain Zoo Old Highway, Colwyn Bay LL28 5UY www.welshmountainzoo.org Colwyn Bay Watersports, Porth Eirias Promenade, Colwyn Bay LL29 8HH colwynbaywatersports.co.uk Bodnant Garden Tal-y-Cafn, Colwyn Bay LL28 5RE www.nationaltrust.org.uk/bodnant-garden

80 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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20 QUESTIONS We speak to one of the region’s true country gentlemen, Lord Newborough, owner of the Rhug Estate in Corwen, fierce fighter for the environment and champion of all things organic 1 What is your full name?

10 What is your worst fear or phobia? Tinned sardines. Yuk! I hate them.

2 What is your current job title/role

11 What would be the first thing you would buy if you won the lottery? A private jet!

The Lord Robert Vaughan Newborough I run the business at Rhug with my team, which includes land management, farming, retail, wholesale, green energy and leisure.

3 Describe your home life

I’m married, and have one daughter by my first marriage, a stepdaughter and three stepgrandchildren – and Truffles, my super-gorgeous chocolate labrador.

4 Highlight of the past 12 months?

Receiving the Royal Warrant, which was a great credit to my wonderful team.

5 Worst moment of the past 12 months?

I can’t think of any. As long as I wake up breathing every day, things aren’t too bad!

6 If you could come back as an animal, what would you be and why? I would come back as my dog because she is so spoilt and she has a bonus of an organic sausage for breakfast every morning in the Bistro! 7 What would be your desert island disc and

why? What does that music mean to you? It would have to be Maria Callas singing Casta Diva because if that was the last music I ever heard I would die happy. It has passion, romance, depth and sincerity all in one.

8 If you could have

one superpower, what would it be? The power to do anything I wanted and not think about it. Why? Because one can be generous with one’s time and achieve things one couldn’t do otherwise.

9 Who is your all-time hero and how have they inspired you? The Queen because she has reigned for so long in dignity and style. It is a thankless task being Queen because you must always be on duty. She is inspirational for her dedication to duty.

12 What is your dream job, other than your current role? Creating a global brand from nothing. A friend has done it and I deeply admire what he has achieved. That goes for many really successful entrepreneurs. 13 If you were representing your country in the Olympics, which sport would you choose? Skiing. 14 What is your favourite drink? Red wine 15 If you had to take part in a reality TV show, which would you have the best chance of winning: Strictly Come Dancing, The Great British Bake Off or I’m A Celebrity… Get Me Out Of Here!? Definitely I’m A Celeb. It would be just up my street – I love a challenge! 16 What is your guilty pleasure? Ice cream!

DID YOU KNOW? Rhug Estate covers 12,50 0 acres

17 When did you last laugh uncontrollably and why? On a holiday recently, because someone was so silly I couldn’t stop laughing… but I could never say why. Sorry, folks – no clues either!

18 You’re hosting a celebrity dinner party for four guests – who’s on the list? Wow… Julia Roberts, Liza Soberano, Beyoncé and Emma Watson. 19 Where is your favourite place in the world

and why? After Wales, Croatia because it’s got a beautiful coastline, history, wonderful architecture, wonderful fish, beautiful Islands and is easy to get to.

20 What is your proudest moment or best achievement so far? Receiving the Royal Warrant. I felt so proud for my wonderful team – they did it for me and the loyalty and the passion they put into their work over the last 20 years of being organic was rewarded.

82 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Jamie’s Butchers and Deli offer a wide range of delicious local produce! Call in and ‘meat’ our friendly butchers and see what delights are on offer Unit 1, St Mary’s Precinct, Church Street, Chirk, Wrexham, LL14 5HX T: 01691 772602 Bellis Brothers Farm Shop & Garden Centre, Holt, Wrexham, LL13 9YU T: 01829 272030



Traditional Llandegla Cider Everybody needs a bit of TLC…

A decent, honest, real cider made for people who KNOW they deserve it! In this artificial world of plastic and synthetic reality, isn’t it great to know that SOMEBODY in your area is making a proper drink?

Call in…

Open every day 10am till 6pm

A REAL CIDER made out of APPLES. Planted, picked and pressed here on the farm.

Dafarn Dywyrch, Llandegla, Wrexham Denbighshire LL11 3BA

Whether visiting the cider shop at the farm or out and about at local shows and festivals, you can try free tasters ‘Try before you buy’ but bring a designated driver with you!

T: 01978 790 650 M: 07812 500 513 E: rosiescider@gmail.com www.rosiescider.co.uk

Rosie’s is situated at the North end of the Horseshoe Pass, at the roundabout where the A542 intersects the A5104 Chester/Corwen road. The A525 runs past us half a mile to the North.

Rosie’s Triple D Cider


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arFest North – Chris Evans’ annual weekend of family fun – returns to Bolesworth, Cheshire, from 26th to 28th July. This year’s event has a new feel with the introduction of an additional paddock filled to the brim with breathtaking cars, alongside a main stage line-up that includes Texas, Kaiser Chiefs, Sister Sledge, Jack Savoretti and Tom Odell, and four new ‘worlds’ packed with activities for the whole family. Britain’s Best market Of course, the most important part of any festival is the food! The newly rebranded Car-Feast world plays host to a kitchen stage, featuring demos from some of the UK’s most well-known chefs. Briony May and Candice Brown, two former Great British DID YOU KNOW? Bake Off contestants, show off the skills that You can camp took them so far in the nation’s favourite at CarFest to cooking contest. (Briony is already getting make the most of into the spirit of CarFest – you can check every moment out the cake she made to celebrate World Baking Day on our social media feeds!) Henry and Ian from Bosh! will also be showing you how to create delicious and easy vegan recipes on the Friday, while TV favourite Atul Kochhar – most recently seen helping new foodie start-ups pursue their dreams in BBC’s Million Pound Menu – will also be showcasing a few classic and spicy delights on the Sunday.

Pub grub up for grabs

Henry and Ian from Bosh!

If you love traditional British grub with a twist, Glynn Purnell will be cooking up a some of his family-inspired dishes. A West Midlander at heart, Glynn has certainly put Birmingham on the culinary map with his contemporary fine-dining restaurants, but who knew that he was also a budding author? Glynn has recently released his first children’s book about his late Jack Russell, Whoops. And if you’re a fan of MasterChef, make sure you don’t miss former children’s

TV presenter and winner of Celebrity MasterChef 2017 Angellica Bell as she talks about the inspiration behind her food and shows us how to make one of her favourite family dishes inspired by her heritage.

Market time

As well as the great chefs setting your tastebuds alight, CarFest plays host to Britain’s Best, a market filled with 50 of the UK’s finest artisan traders selling Clockwise from top left: Candice Brown, chutneys, pickles, fudge, Angellica Bell, Atul Kochhar and Glynn Purnell homemade ice-cream and many other delights! If after all of that you fancy a nice pint, pop in to the very first CarFest Pub, hosted by Timothy Taylor’s, to enjoy a pint of award-winning cask ale with your family and friends in the traditional pub and beer garden. The pub will also host comedy gigs, open-mic style bands and a traditional pub quiz, as well as a darts tournament for all ages – definitely not to be missed! So, if you haven’t already blocked off the weekend of 26th to 28th July for the best weekend of family fun, all set in the beautiful grounds of the Bolesworth Estate, then make sure you book your tickets before they run out! You can purchase tickets at www.carfest.org. We can’t wait to see you there! AT THIS YEAR’S CARFEST DON’T FORGET TO VISIT… Eden Pampering delights, from massages and hot tubs to professionally lead yoga classes. Be inspired by young people representing CarFest’s children charities and help build a sculpture from recyclable plastic. Kids’ Kingdom A space created by kids for kids, where they can play, dance, skate and enjoy the world to their hearts’ contents. Vintage CarFest Step back in time and visit Happy’s Circus, Carter’s Steam Fair or learn the Lindy Hop on the Pavilion stage.

Roast wild bass with laverbread butter sauce Chef Bryan Webb, owner and head chef at the Michelin starred Tyddyn Llan restaurant near Corwen, shares a special recipe with Shire Bass with laverbread has been a favourite of mine since my early days of cooking at the Drangway restaurant in Swansea, back in the early 1980s. There we would go though loads of bass caught just off the coast – they’d all be line caught and stiff as a board, so we’d have to leave them a day to be able to fillet them! And it cost no more than 90p a pound (showing my age!) Bass is one thing Wales has in common with the south of France – we have the best bass swimming around our shores, and these days farmed bass is readily available for the home cook and restaurants that choose to serve a one portion fish. The wild type is always my first choice, but then again I run a restaurant where you expect only the best. Fresh line-caught bass has a ravishingly beautiful, bright silver belly that darkens to a pale blue grey on its sides. It’s a great sporting fish and thrives in rough weather. Laverbread is a delicacy made from seaweed found on the rocks of the Gower coast. The seaweed is boiled for hours to make a thick purée. It’s sold in the markets and fishmongers in south Wales, and is a part of our culture and heritage. The combination of fresh wild bass and a light laverbread butter is a simple combination, but it’s a light dish that speaks volumes about Welsh food.

Ingredients 4 x 150g pieces of wild bass, skin on and pin bones removed 4 shallots, finely chopped 1tbsp white wine vinegar 175ml dry white wine (muscadet if possible) 250g unsalted butter Salt A pinch of cayenne pepper Juice of half a lemon 2tbsp laverbread 2tbsp double cream 50g extra butter 300g raw picked spinach

Roast bass and laverbread

• First, make a beurre blanc. Add the white wine, vinegar and shallots in a saucepan and slowly reduce to a syrup. Over a light heat, add the butter a little at a time until it forms a slightly thick sauce. Season with salt and cayenne pepper, and add the lemon juice. Strain into a clean saucepan. • In a separate saucepan, add the laverbread and cream, bring to the boil. Add half the beurre blanc.

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NATURE’S WAY As a new world-class spa opens at Carden Park, the hotel’s executive chef , Graham Tinsley MBE, looks at the natural ingredients that are as important for the outside of your body as the inside

Food&Drink SUPERFOOD SALAD Ingredients

40g shelled edamame beans 80g sweet potato 40g pomegranate seeds 50g quinoa 60g chopped raw spinach 20g rocket leaves For the dressing 250ml cold-press rapeseed oil 250ml groundnut oil 25g Dijon mustard 40g honey Juice of 2 lemons (whisk all the ingredients together and store in the fridge)



his summer sees the opening of a new £10m luxury spa at Carden Park Hotel. The extensive facilities, located in the grounds of the estate, will offer guests the opportunity to ‘Feel Good From The Outside In’ as they’re encouraged to relax and connect with the surroundings throughout their visit. Treatments will include highly personalised signature experiences that take guests on a bespoke journey of the elements supporting the Spa At Carden’s focus on nature. Plans include incorporating natural and freshly picked herbs from our very own multi-sensory wellbeing garden into the treatments and also into the food that will be available on the menu. This adds an extra element to our gardening – we grow so much to use in the kitchens, and it’s great to see our produce being used

• Season the fish and coat lightly with olive oil. Place on a hot griddle skin-side down, until the skin is crisp. Place on an oiled tray and bake in a hot oven at 200°C/gas mark 6 for five minutes. • Meanwhile, in a large pan melt the extra butter and cook the spinach until wilted. • Serve the bass on a bed of spinach. Pour the lavabread sauce around one side and the remaining beurre blanc around the other side. Bryan Webb has spent 40 years at the stove, and Not Bad For A Taff tells his remarkable story, from peeling potatoes, picking spinach and washing up at the Crown in Whitebrook to creating his Michelin-starred Tyddyn Llan with his beloved wife, Susan. Not Bad For A Taff is part autobiography, part rich collection of recipes, in which Bryan shares stories from his 40 years at the stove and recipes from the 1970s to the present day. Call 01490 440264 or email mail@tyddynllan.co.uk to find out more.

• Cook the edamame beans in boiling salted water and refresh. • Dice the sweet potato and cover with cold water, bring to a simmer and cook until tender, refresh. • Soak the quinoa in cold water for 15 minutes then drain and rinse. Place in a pan with equal amounts of cold water, bring to a simmer and cover with a lid. Cook on a low heat for 25-30 minutes. When cooked, take off the heat still covered and let it steam for 5 minutes. Using a fork fluff up the quinoa and allow to cool. • Mix all the ingredients together and dress with classic dressing.

elsewhere on the estate too. We’ll be providing ingredients used in treatments and backing that up with the perfect menu to complement the therapies and the sense of relaxation guests will be looking for. Many visitors to the spa will be hoping to detox and unwind, so our salads and lighter dishes will feature strongly on the menu. This month’s recipe (above) features one of our signature salads.



This issue, we were lucky enough to try a local award-winning cider, brewed and sold by Steve Hughes at his farm in Llandegla, which is just past the Horseshoe Pass and open 10am-6pm every day. The Triple D, with its three varieties of sweet, All five varieties on sale at Rosie’s medium and dry, was one we were particularly keen Every bottle has a nice strong to try. We found each ‘Supermarket fizz when opened. A fantastic Triple D variety had quite brands are just tipple any time of year. It’s a a full taste – you can really alcopops in cider that makes you realise enjoy the ‘appleness’ of this comparison’ the supermarket brands drink – a really fruity, and really are just sweetened fresh soft apple flavour. alcopops in comparison! Tasting carefully you can appreciate You can buy Rosies cider at Dafarn its complexity with the many different Dywyrch near Llandegla, LL11 3BA apple varities used. There are soft and or call 01978 790650, and at Rhug sweet flavours, a little bit like pear, and Hawarden Farm Shops. Find out contrasting with some drier notes, and more at www.rosiescider.co.uk the whole drink is really well balanced.

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 85

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21-22 September 2019

New Street Car Park Mold Sat Nav: CH7 1 NY

Celebrity Chefs

Award-winning Cheesemaker Sean Wilson


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t: Child ren £6 Under : £1 (4-15) 4s fre (child e ren accom must be panie d by an ad ult)

Top Food & Drink Exhibitors Live Music

Live Music Saturday

Free Children’s Activities & Cookery School

5pm- 8pm Adult: £3 Children: £1 (4-15) Under 4s free

Admission: 10am-5pm www.moldfoodfestival.co.uk


We’re social @moldfoodfestival


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GREAT BRITISH FOOD is what we're all about BUTCHERY




WWW.CHEERBROOK.CO.UK 01270 666431 Newcastle Road, Nantwich, Cheshire, CW5 7EL 086_SHIREJA2019.indd 1

OPENING HOURS: Monday - CLOSED Tuesday - 9.30 - 5.30 Wednesday - 9.00 - 5.00 Thursday - 9.00 - 5.30 Friday - 9.00 - 6.00 Saturday - 9.00 - 6.00 Sunday - 10.00 - 4.00


@CHEERBROOK 21/06/2019 14:52


PERFECT PICNIC TIPPLES Make the most of the outdoors by pairing the perfect tipple with your picnic. Resident wine expert Pip Gale from Gale’s Wine Bar in Llangollen shares her handy hints


l fresco dining can take many forms, but one of the purest is a good, old-fashioned picnic. When a picnic is all about fun, sangria is a refreshing and playful way to enjoy your outside company; it’s also lower in alcohol than wine and a great crowd-pleaser. To make your own, mix equal parts Spanish red wine (I prefer a garnacha) and orange juice, and add cognac to taste. A touch of Grand Marnier doesn’t go amiss, and you’ll also need lots of fruit and ice, and a big jug to serve. If you’d prefer something a little purer, a bottle of fizz works great. It adds a little sophistication and has the added benefit of being almost a palate cleanser, ideal for a picky meal with lots of flavours. Prosecco works, but I’d always go for champagne. For ultimate refreshment and A great palate cleanser versatility with food, seek out a clean


Dragon Sea Salt Cheddar on the banks of the Menai Strait


nglesey sea salt brand Halen Môn and Wales’s oldest dairy cooperative, South Caernarfon Creameries (SCC), have joined together to launch the first cheese made with Welsh sea salt. Sea Salt Cheddar is made with 100 per cent milk from Welsh cows at SCC’s factory in Chwilog near Pwllheli, and uses pure Halen Môn sea salt that is made by pumping seawater from the Menai Strait of Anglesey each day. The new cheddar was created thanks to a £13.5m investment in the SCC cheesemaking plant on the Llyn Peninsula, and is part of a new Handcrafted range of speciality cheeses sold under SCC’s Dragon label. The cheese has been in development for two years, thanks to Linda Lewis Williams, product development manager at SCC, and Halen

Môn’s owners, husbandand-wife team Alison and David Lea-Wilson. ‘It’s a marriage made in heaven,’ says Linda. ‘We’ve taken two brands both rooted in high-quality Welsh provenance and created a cheese for Wales to truly be proud of. Salt has always been used in cheese as it’s the ultimate preservative, and it also brings out the depth of flavour in the cheese.’ ‘The quality of the ingredients are what sets this cheese apart,’ says David. ‘We have harnessed the fantastic raw materials we have here in the clean seawater of the Menai Strait, and the milk from the cows fed by the lush grass of north and mid Wales. ‘You can taste the minerals of the salt in the cheese and it is just a wonderful, delicious product.’

Linda Lewis Williams from South Caernarfon Creameries (centre) with Halen Môn’s owners, David and Alison Lea-Wilson

Are you a local producer? Would like to see your foodie treats reviewed on these pages? Get in touch by emailing editorial@shiremagazine.co.uk or calling 01691 661270

one, such as Pol Roger or Lanson. If you are Reds can work outdoors too! really going for it food-wise, with lobster, caviar or other rich DID YOU foods, a lovely white Burgundy is a great KNOW? option – refreshing and rich, and fantastic The averag to drink in its own right. If you’d rather take e person in a red wine, a lighter version that is very the U K picnics thre slightly chilled is great. A beaujolais, such e times a ye as a fleurie or brouilly, would work well, as ar would any of the bourguignon pinot noirs. No picnic drinks list is complete without mention of rosé. A Provence or similar style is the business, but other styles can work too. Spanish rosados are great when chilled and, if you must, a white zinfandel can be worked into any outside meal. Enjoy the outdoors – and don’t forget your corkscrew!

FESTIVAL FEVER FOR BREWERS AND DRINKERS A beer festival is a great way to treat your beer-loving tastebuds. Here are a few of the best that are taking place in the region over the coming months Conwy Real Ale Trail, local businesses too. Entry North Wales is free and glass hire for the This is a bit festival is a returnable £2. different See the group’s Facebook from a page for more information. traditional festival as Chester Beer & Wine you need Festival, Hoole, Cheshire Supping in Conwy to travel to This modern craft beer appreciate the ales on offer. festival features groundThere are least 50 different breaking and innovative beers available, and tickets breweries from the UK, include the bus to transport Europe and beyond. you between venues. This From 2nd to 4th August relatively new event in the historic Hoole has already secured Community Centre ‘Festivals a firm following from visitors can enjoy over are a way all over Wales and 50 beers. As well as to support further afield, and a fantastic selection local takes place twice of artisan beers, from breweries’ a year. The next local to global brewers, event is on 28th there will also be September. more than 20 fruit, pear www.realaletrail.co.uk and traditional ciders. There will be live music Shifnal Beer during the whole event in Festival, Shropshire the outside area, leaving Telford & East Shropshire the beer hall quiet so CAMRA holds its fifth beer customers can discuss festival, sponsored by their favourite beers. The Joules Brewery, at the War Saturday afternoon is child Memorial Club from 17th to friendly, with age appropriate 19th October. Featuring a entertainment, and there wide variety of ales including is ample Oakham, Wilde Child, Hop street food Back, Dowton, Finney’s, available Ludlow Brewing Co, Wye throughout, Valley, Joules, Rowton and including more, this festival is well Powell’s Pork worth a visit if you appreciate Pies and Dim Cheers! the drinks and like to support Sum Su. July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 87

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Our meat is butchered here in the farm shop by real people with a wealth of experience, using traditional methods that have been tried and tested. We have complete control over the meat we sell as it is reared on our own farms using feed that we grow. We transport it ourselves and it is matured and prepared here in the farm shop. As the meat is prepared in small batches by hand, we are able to see it and smell it so can bring you great tasting real food. As a whole carcass butchery there is always a selection of more unusual cuts alongside the more traditional. Our knowledgable butchery team will be happy to help you find the perfect cut, whatever the occasion.

Real food, real people, real taste

Bromfield, Shropshire, SY8 2JR 01584 856 000 Shire Magazine - Ludlow Ad Jul 19 - Butchery.indd 1 088_SHIREJA2019.indd 1

Open 7 days a week

@ludlowfarmshop www.ludlowfarmshop.co.uk 04/06/2019 14:08:54 21/06/2019 14:53

REVIEW last bit. A beautifully balanced but sinful way to enjoy shellfish.

Main fusion

We visit the Clive Arms in Ludlow to see what the completely refurbished and extended restaurant and hotel has to offer


egular visitors to the Clive Arms, the boutique inn located at the heart of Ludlow’s Oakly Park Estate, will hardly recognise the place when they step inside for the first time following its extensive refurbishment. The entire restaurant and bar area has been remodelled to include a new outdoor seating area, while upstairs new ‘comfy lux’ large double ensuite rooms have been added. ‘The service is quick Oakly Farm Estate is leading and friendly, and example of how to make a you feel comfortable taking as long as success of local produce. Every you like choosing menu at the Clive – and the your dishes’ nearby Ludlow Farmshop and Ludlow Kitchen Café – states proudly that ‘All the beef, pork and lamb comes from our own farms… and Oakly Park provides all our game requirements… We don’t measure in food miles, we measure in food metres.’

Enjoying a meal at the Clive

According to the Clive’s head chef, Luke Wignall, Asian flavours are very popular with British diners, and the poached hake with a miso consummé is a lovely, light way to appreciate the white fish. The broccoli has a good crunch, and the pak choi is blackened on the grill on one side, while the miso is light enough to allow the coriander and lime to come through well. Our other main was an impressive tower of brioche, beef fillet, foie gras and truffle covered in madeira gravy. The beef is thick, soft and juicy, and the mushroom and asparagus sideshow is mouthwatering too. The cheeseboard is terrific. You’re spoiled for choice when it comes to cheeses made on site, and pretty much everything on offer is an award winner.

Asparagus and parmesan

Beef fillet

Morning marvels

The terrific cheeseboard But it’s perhaps at breakfast that you really can see the influence the Oakly Park Estate produce has on the Clive Arms’ menu. Pretty much everything on the plate comes from the farm – the black pudding, smoked bacon, cured salmon, jams, cheeses… even the coffee is roasted on site. And the best part of it is, you can wander down to the farmshop and take some home with you!

About Oakly Park Estate Oakly Park estate was once part of Ludlow Castle’s royal forest. It was purchased by Robert Clive (‘Clive of India’) in the second half of the 18th century and has remained in the hands of the Earls of Plymouth and Windsor-Clive family ever since. Ludlow Farmshop was established by the family in 2007 and provides the estate with beef, lamb, rare breed Gloucester Old Spot pork, wild venison and game, milk, honey, fruit and vegetables. It produces more than half of what it sells, and you can see the baking, cheesemaking, coffee roasting, preserving and cooking in the shop itself. ludlowfarmshop.co.uk

When we visit the Clive Arms, the service is quick and friendly, despite the restaurant being fully booked. The open, light space spills out into the bar area, and you feel comfortable taking as long as you like choosing your dishes, The restaurant bill with the waiting staff happy to Starters chat about the local ingredients. Seasonal asparagus, onion ash, asparagus oil, sauce The asparagus starter is a delight verge, parmesan crisp, poached hen’s egg £8 Crab and scallop ravioli, langoustine bisque, spiced tomato fondue £9.50 to look at, with dramatic parmesan Mains crisps among the stacked asparagus. Poached hake fillet, pak choi, heritage radish, broccoli and Blanched for just a minute to a miso, lime and coriander consummé £18 two, the freshly cut asparagus Beef fillet with sautéd foie gras, garlic brioche croute, black truffle, Madeira sauce £32 tips are so fresh they still have Dessert a firm crunch that is sweet and A selection of three Clive cheeses, with chutney, quince jelly, celery and biscuits £8.50 juicy. The soft egg and asparagus is a great combination, and the tasty salsa The Clive Arms Hotel adds a nice touch. Bromfield, Ludlow, The ravioli is a single Shropshire SY8 2JR Head chef Luke Wignall large piece of pasta, Tel. 01584 856565 served in a deep bowl to accommodate the creamy bisque and cress dressing. The fresh pasta is rolled quite thickly and Double rooms cost from has a satisfying texture, while the crab and scallop filling £95 per night B&B. To book melts in your mouth. However, it’s the creamy langoustine online, visit www.theclive.co.uk bisque that has us craving more – you’ll want to finish every July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 89

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Bottoms up! Slàinte m With the UK’s alcohol industry thriving, we take a look at some of the local vineyards, microbreweries and artisan distilleries that are supplying the Shire patch with some top tasty tipples


etween 1990 and 2017, alcohol consumption in the UK dropped almost 10 per cent, from an annual average of 12.6 litres of pure alcohol per person to 11.4 litres, as reported by medical journal The Lancet. And with people under 24 the least likely to drink alcohol,

according to the Office For National Statistics, this trend is set to continue. Yet the production of alcoholic drinks is going through a serious boom in Britain. How to explain these two seemingly contradictory facts? The answer is that British drinking habits have changed.

Around 30 million people in the UK drink alcohol, but health warnings and guidelines have had an effect on how they do so, while a variety of factors mean people are less likely to go to the pub for a skinful. Quality is becoming more important than quantity as drinkers look

to get maximum enjoyment for their money. And people are also making more effort to buy local produce of all kinds – IRI research shows 55 per cent of people prefer to do this – which is great news for Britain’s brewers, distillers and vintners, including those in the Shire area.

Apple of our eye If the mention of cider conjures images of plastic bottles of cheap drink from the supermarket, it’s time to think again – craft makers have been busy updating Britain’s ancient favourite


rtisan cider – not the mass-produced and plastic bottled variety sold on strength and price alone but the proper stuff that takes as much effort and expertise to produce as craft beers and ales – is a special thing. Steve Kinghan from the Welsh Perry & Cider Society works to raise its profile within the local area. ‘The WPCS was set up in 2001 by Dave Matthews and Alan Golding,’ he says. ‘Since then, we’ve been cultivating an ever-growing crop of traditional cider and perry producers, which now spans the length and

breadth of Wales. We aim to continue this trend by building projects to support the industry, its customers and the heritage behind it to ensure we move forward and grow successfully.’ The WPCS has helped secure Welsh government and Heritage Lottery funding to support orchard owners and cider makers in order to encourage the wider growth of Welsh cider apple and perry pear varieties. With groups like this supporting the industry, it is no wonder it’s thriving!

Jersey, Browns, Langworthy and Kingston Black are grown on organic land, free of sprays and fertiliser. Once the apples are harvested, the fermenting and maturing process is slowed down to create a more traditional, deeper flavoured cider. Another company that has been scooping numerous awards is Rosie’s DDD Cider, brewed by Steve Hughes on his farm in Llandegla, Denbighshire. ‘From my initial five gallons of cider made in 2005, we now have more than 1,000 standard apple trees made up Special ciders One local producer which spoils of 69 different varieties, all us with its specialist drinks trying their best to cling on at 1,000ft above sea level. is Hare Moon Cider, which uses apples ‘I have now got a DID YOU feel for those apple grown, pressed KNOW? and bottled in varieties that work Over two million St Martins, well up here and I’m new cider apple trees have been now in my 14th year Shropshire. planted in the UK Varieties such of cider making.’ since 1995 haremooncider.com, as Dabinett, Harry Masters www.rosiescider.co.uk

Small batches of craft cider

Cider sales are on the rise

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e mhath

Beautiful brews

We are lucky enough to have a wealth of micropubs and breweries in our local area. We spoke to Shire’s resident beer expert Chris Charters from Welsh CAMRA to discover how even the smallest establishment can make a big impact


he Licensing Act 2003 CAMRA Wales. ‘They normally don’t have electronic machines made it easier to establish such as jukeboxes and fruit small public houses, and as a results micropubs began to machines, and customers talk to each other, with dominoes, appear across the UK. In 2012, cards and boardgames such the Micropub Association as chess, backgammon and was set up to offer free advice Scrabble on offer.’ on how to run a The atmosphere successful micropub. ‘Micropubs micropubs offer tends The Campaign are often to appeal to those For Real Ale set up in redundant looking for a relaxing (CAMRA), Society shops drink more than a Of Independent converted Brewers and the wild night out. into a bar’ Welsh Perry Cider ‘Drinks served are usually a Society also promote selection of real ales from local and support micropubs. microbreweries, real ciders and Peace and a pint perries,’ says Chris. ‘Some also ‘A micropub is a small specialise in spirits, with gin being the latest popular option. establishment free from a ‘By keeping the whole brewery tie, usually set up in a process simple, with lower redundant shop converted into a bar,’ says Chris Charters from overheads, these benefits can

Small breweries are popular

be passed on to the customers in the form of lower prices. There are several micropubs in the area well worth visiting. The Micropub Association has a map at www.micropub association.co.uk/finder.

Good news for brews

The rise in micropubs has been great news for their main suppliers, microbreweries. These are often owned by the same people, but many micropubs also have range of local specialists keeping their bars stocked with top-quality local beers and ales. Among the best known in Wales are Conwy Brewery (conwybrewery.co.uk), which has a micropub in its sampling room, Great Orme Brewery (www.greatormebrewery.co.uk) in Llandudno and the award-

winning Monty’s Brewery (www.montysbrewery.co.uk) in Montgomery, Powys. Llangollen Brewery (www. llangollenbrewery.com) only uses the finest ingredients and an underground water source to produce ales and help keep alive the historical tradition of brewing in Llangollen. Another Welsh favourite is the Purple Moose Brewery (purplemoose. co.uk) – a 40-barrel microbrewery in the historic harbour town of Porthmadog. In Shropshire, Stonehouse Brewery (www.stonehouse brewery.co.uk) produces beers using traditional methods, with a pledge to provide great beer in the best possible condition. For this reason, its finished cask beer is rarely seen more than 30 miles from Oswestry.

Beer boom boost for Rhyl brewery A Rhyl micropub at the forefront of the real ale revolution is celebrating its first year in business with plans to launch 12 bars by the end of 2019

The Dove in Rhyl, the first of a new breed of pub, was opened by Dovecote Brewery last March and three more have followed since. There is now a Dove in Prestatyn, and The Hoptimist in Rhuddlan and Abergele in collaboration with Cwrw Ial Brewery from Eryrys. ‘It can be a problem for a small craft brewery to get their beer into pubs because so many are owned by big breweries,’ says Dovecote Brewery’s owner Richard Green. ‘We knew there was an appetite for a better-quality product and wanted to offer a more natural local craft ale, so we decided to open the Dove micropub where we

stock beers from 42 Welsh craft breweries and a few from over the border in north-west England.’

Local focus

Richard and his wife, Sue, set up Dovecote Brewery 20 months ago when Richard decided to make his home brewing hobby into a new career. ‘This is the realisation of a long-held dream,’ says Richard. ‘We’ve tried to create a special atmosphere with no music or electronic games, but you can be sure of a warm welcome, good conversation and a great choice of craft beers, gins and ciders.’

Richard Green (left), owner of Dovecote Brewery, at the Dove in Rhyl

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That’s the

spirit! It’s not only brewers who are embracing the artisan drinks movement – a new breed of spirits producers are also taking a fresh look at traditional methods DID YOU will be the perfect KNOW? gin. Kevin Flower In 1726, will be unveiling London had the special 1,500 working edition gin at gin stills the Llangollen Food Festival on 19th and 20th October, developed in a solar powered and eco-friendly distillery in the garage at his home in Conwy. Kevin, who taught chemistry at the University of Manchester, threw caution to the wind and set up his new venture with university friends Andy Whiting and Euan Noble to develop a brand of gin based on decades of combined scientific expertise. Their company, pHure Liquors, has a growing list of stockists, including pubs, delicatessens and off licences in north Wales.

Producer Kevin Flower with some of his homemade gins

Perfecting the process

‘Like many in the teaching profession, I’d had enough,’ says Kevin. ‘It wasn’t the Kevin Flower of pHure Liquors teaching, it was everything that goes with it, so I was looking for other outlets.’ nyone who likes a stronger tipple The three scientists set themselves the will have noticed that the options challenge to create a unique gin based available at the moment are incredible. on their knowledge. ‘We took the classic Long gone are the days when pubs would academic approach, looking at various offer one gin, one whisky, one vodka and scientific literatures about distillation maybe a brandy behind the bar. Now, spirits processes, and we used that as a basis for menus are on hand in most pubs, as well how we were going to start, basically turning as a huge range of complementary mixers it into a scientific experiment,’ says Kevin. designed to create the perfect drink. The result was the flagship pHure A report last year found that Gin, made from 96 per cent the number of distilleries in the organic wheat grain alcohol. It UK had risen by a fifth to double remains the company’s biggest ‘We the number that existed in 2012. selling gin thanks to its velvety turned the A large part of this resurgence smooth flavour, and is the base distillation process into for all its other gin products. is down to the boom of artisan a scientific gin, sales of which are expected The company produces experiment’ to reach £1.37bn by 2020. occasional batches of honey gin and most recently launched strawberry and rhubarb flavours, Sunshine and science A former university lecturer is taking a with a special edition lined up for Llangollen scientific approach to create what he hopes Food Festival. www.phure-liquors.com


pHure produces rhuburb and strawberry gins

92 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Gin it to win it B

ased in the beautiful north Shropshire countryside, Henstone Distillery (www. henstonedistillery.com) uses its 1,000-litre still – nicknamed Hilda – to produce a range of spirits, including whisky, brandy and vodka. But it’s gin that has brought recognition and awards to the company so far. This April, Henstone London Dry Gin was awarded a gold medal at the London Spirits Competition. The firm’s Rosé Gin was also a runner-up in the cask-aged gin category of the 2019 Gin Guide Awards, while its Navy Gin was shortlisted in the navy category and the distillery was in the final running for distillery of the year.

Attention to detail

Over at Shropshire Hills Distillery, Ludlow Gin (www.ludlowgin.co.uk) is also scooping honours. All the company’s award-winning gins are distilled in small batches by their creator, Shaun Wardington, using handmade copper stills Joy and Felicity to create the finest gin from the heart of the Welsh Marches. In another attention to detail, the unique labels are handmade on a 1950s Heidelberg letterpress in the Cotswolds and each bottle is lovingly signed and numbered. The team at Ludlow Gin use only the finest natural

Shropshire Distillery’s Shire Gin

botanicals – flowers, fruits and spices – some of which they forage and prepare themselves, and many of which travel from across the globe. The Shropshire Distillery (www.facebook. com/shiregin), which turns one this July, has had an incredible year of gin making. Its Shire Gin is lovingly crafted in small batches by the Glynn family, who sign and number every bottle. Each batch is created in a copper pot using 100 per cent wheat grain spirit, and flavours are created by adding ethically sourced botanicals such as juniper, English coriander, orris and angelica to make a range of delicate and delicious finished products.

GIN BRITANNIA 1539 Restaurant & Bar, Chester Racecourse, 20th July, 3rd August & 7th September Enjoy a hands-on gin experience with a difference at the Roodee, where you’ll be given the chance to blend your own bottle of bespoke gin to take home, using a personally concocted recipe of botanicals and flavours. You will learn about the process and chemistry in producing gin from connoisseur Chris Abbot, including how to choose the right botanicals and operate a still, right through to the designing, naming and tasting of your own gin brand. While your gin distils, you’ll also be taken on a journey through the history, customs and culture of this popular spirit, from its origins to the current gin renaissance. The experience includes a three-course lunch and sample gin and tonics. Tickets cost £95 per person, including your personally created bottle of gin to take home, based on two people sharing a still. Call 01244 304611 or visit www.restaurant1539.co.uk for more information.

There’s something in the water…


hen it comes to producing whisky, one of the most important ingredients is the water. One of the best local options uses a prime source of Wales’s finest water for both its content and its name – Aber Falls. The distillery is one of only four in Wales, and is located within a stone’s throw of Rhaeadr Fawr, the Aber Falls waterfall. The firm’s whisky is distilled, bottled and matured on site, using specially crafted Welsh ingredients from the surrounding area and traditional copper stills that produce refined, premium quality whisky. www.aberfallsdistillery.com

Create your own gin

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Wine not? G No round-up of local drink producers would be complete without a nod to the area’s vineyards, which are experiencing a boom time

lobal warming may not be a good thing in growing grapes. The south the long term, but warmer temperatures Shropshire soil is rocky and DID YOU and last year’s longer, hotter summer have been dry, which is great news as KNOW? good news for the UK’s vintners. Grapes have poor soil actually yields Sparkling wine thrived and been left bursting with flavour, higher-quality grapes!’ accounts for 66% leading to record years for local vineyards. of the UK’s wine production One favourite is the Kerry Vale Vineyard Fruits and flavours (www.kerryvalevineyard.co.uk), a small, familyAnother local winemaker run vineyard on the Wales/England border in enjoying the fruits of its rural Shropshire. The family are passionate labours is Penarth Vineyard about quality, fresh, local and handcrafted goods, (www.penarthvineyard.co.uk), which can be which is conveyed in the care found in a unique riverside and attention they lavish on location in Powys. The team their 6,000 vines, resulting in produced their first, very beautiful clean-tasting wine. small crop in 2003 and in the Kerry Vale produces a wide years since have grown and range of popular white, rosé developed their product to and red still and sparkling make the most of the area’s wines, and has won a number unique micro-climate. The of national and international Penarth Estate’s sparkling awards and trophies for wines are a particular success its wines, including Great and are produced in the Vineyards always welcome visitors Taste Awards for two traditional way – spending two years running. It was also recently featured on years in stainless steel tanks to create a wine that BBC1’s The Farmers’ Country Showdown. compares favourably with its French counterparts.

Multiple reasons

Kerry Vale in Shropshire

Vineyard owner Geoff Ferguson believes the success of Kerry Vale – and the boom in British wines generally – is down a combination of climate change, increased wine knowledge and increased investment in the industry. ‘Much of our success is due to our dedication to producing wines of only the highest quality, utilising time-honoured viticulture practices in the vineyard to produce the best possible fruit,’ he says. ‘Every part of the vineyard maintenance is done by hand – a very labour-intensive process. The vineyard also has the perfect conditions for

Whatever your chosen tipple, next time you’re pouring yourself a glass of something, ignore the New World wines, snub the Belgian beers, reject the Swedish ciders and avoid the Scottish whiskies… we produce everything you need right here in the Shire region! Just take care to stick to government guidelines and please drink sensibly, folks!

Poor soil actually leads to higher-quality grapes

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Suzanne Mercer

For the 850,000-plus people in the UK living with dementia, even the most familiar setting can become a bewildering and frightening place. Suzanne Mercer of Kettle Design shares her tips for creating a dementia-friendly home

Think about colour

Colour can have a big impact on the mood of someone with dementia, so take time to think about the colours you choose. Reds are often associated with danger, but for a dementia patient they can be stimulating and may be effectively Happy colours used in an activity space to keep them motivated and mentally active. Blues, greens and violet tones are calming and good choices for bedrooms. Yellow tones are bright, warm and happy colours and are best suited to kitchens or living areas.

Embrace contrasts

As a person’s eyesight decreases, choosing contrasting colours for walls and floors, tables and chairs – or even sets of plates and

means they won’t get muddled or think they are tripping or stepping on something they shouldn’t. A straight, clean passageway through a space is important. Dark-coloured floors should be avoided as dark surfaces on a floor or kitchen top can resemble a hole. Equally, shiny floors can look wet, while blue floors can look like water and green floors can be confused for grass. A naturalcoloured surface such as wood is perfect.

Warm lighting

Choose natural flooring

Lighting determines a space and the time of day, and having bright warm lights can create a safe and warm environment. People with dementia often become confused about what time of day it is, so keeping a space bright throughout the day is crucial to keeping them active and awake. By contrast, dark spaces can lead them to think it’s nighttime and make them sleepy. Check that curtains and blinds aren’t blocking any natural light from a room.

Consider signage

bowls – will ensure everything is noticeable and recognisable. Contrasting colours also help people with dementia to become aware of their surroundings and know where to go. Use a contrast colour for light switches on a wall so they can be seen easily. You can also use contrasting colours for furniture, but avoid stripes.

Be careful with flooring

Having one flooring surface throughout is crucial when it comes to designing a dementia-friendly interior. People with dementia are easily confused and distressed – having one floor surface

Signs are important to make people aware of the different areas within a space. Label doors and walls to guide the person through a space and remind them of where they are. Choose bold, effective signs and make sure they’re at eye level. You can also stick pictures on cupboards to remind the person of what is inside – for example, a picture of cutlery on the cutlery drawer, or a picture of clothes on the door of a wardrobe.

Beware of mirrors

Mirrors can be upsetting to those with dementia as they may not recognise the person in the reflection as themselves. Clear materials, mirrors and reflective surfaces can also be mistaken as not being there, so can be a hazard. It may be best to remove them completely. For more home-styling advice, visit www.kettledesign.co.uk July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 97

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Interior expertise at special supper Locals looking for some decor hints and tips were recently treated to some interior design expertise in a stunning stately home setting


rivate country house, wedding and events venue Iscoyd interiors world’ and ‘Britain’s brightest Park, which is located on the border of north Wales, tastemaker’ by Harper’s Bazaar, Suzy’s Shropshire and Cheshire, hosted its latest Supper Club latest project is AllBright, the recently at the end of June with guest speaker and worldopened all-women club in Mayfair. DID YOU renowned interior designer Suzy Hoodless. Formerly an auction house, the KNOW? Iscoyd as it is The decadent evening gave visitors a unique four-storey building has been seen today was opportunity to get tips and advice from one of redesigned to accommodate a built in 1737 the country’s leading interior designers. Suzy restaurant, bar, salon and treatment talked to the diners about her fascinating career rooms, as well as outdoor terraces, from her early days as editor of Wallpaper* magazine which epitomise Suzy’s bold aesthetic to the latest projects she has worked on, including her work while referencing classic design with AllBright, Britain’s first women-only private members’ elements to create a timeless space. club, and Television Centre, formerly the home of the BBC.

Foodie focus

Quality credentials

Drawing on 20 years’ experience in the design industry, Suzy set up her eponymous studio in London in 2000 and has since created stunning interiors for clients all over the world, from a beach house in Barbados to a contemporary lodge in the Highlands. Last year saw the completion of her studio’s work for Television Centre. Described by the Telegraph as ‘one of the true movers AllBright, Mayfair and shakers of the

Iscoyd Park

Guests to the Supper Club were well looked after, with drinks on arrival, followed by a two-course dinner from Iscoyd’s Michelin-trained head chef, David Cox, and his team. Suzy has always been a great supporter of Iscoyd Park and personally oversaw the design of the nine guest bedrooms at the 18th-century grade II-listed Georgian house. ‘It was an absolute honour to welcome world-renowned interior designer Suzy Hoodless back to Iscoyd Park as our guest speaker,’ says Iscoyd Park’s director, Phil Godsal. ‘Suzy has had a fascinating career and has created stunning interiors for clients all over the world. Suzy’s talk, the food from our Michelin-trained head chef and the excellent company made for a truly great evening.’ The Supper Club offers guest speakers alongside other events held at Iscoyd Park. For more information, visit www.iscoydpark.com

Be open to new designs G

arolla is revolutionising the roller garage door industry, so upgrading your home has never been easier. The UK’s largest roller garage door installer has local fitters across the UK who are ready to give your garage a new lease of life. Made from strong aluminium, a Garolla garage door is easy to use and saves valuable space in your garage. The door tucks away neatly, allowing you to use every inch of your garage as there are no large swinging doors to worry

about. They’re operated by wireless remote control, allowing you to access your garage from your car. Manufactured by hand, the doors are available in a choice of 18 colours from classic shades to something a little more vibrant. They can be installed in just a few hours, ensuring your new garage door is ready to use immediately. For a free quote, call the customer care team on 0800 468 1982 or visit www.garolla.co.uk

98 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Middleton Road, Oswestry SY11 2PN T: 01691 680008 E. info@oswestryglass.com www.bespoak.co

Contact us for our latest colour brochure

Middleton Road, Oswestry


Heat from under your feet As we look for alternative ways to keep our homes and businesses warm with less cost to us and the environment, one local firm is urging landowners to consider going underground


‘With the payback better than ever, this is the perfect time for f you’re looking for a new way to heat your property and have a chunk farmers to consider having a ground source heat pump system installed,’ says Richard Corbett, a partner with Roger Parry of land at your disposal – if you live on a farm, for & Partners. ‘The systems are an extremely energy efficient DID YOU KNOW? way to produce heat for the farm, and farmers can benefit example – you may want 50% of Sweden’s from lower energy bills of between 30 and 70 per cent. The to consider the installation heating demand of a ground-source heat system would require planning permission, but our expert is covered by team of rural surveyors are always on hand to assist.’ pump system. This heating heat pumps option is becoming more GSHP systems can generate up to four times the heat output for every unit of electricity input. This makes them an extremely and more popular across energy-efficient way to produce heat and cut energy costs. Some the country, and can even be GSHP schemes will give a return on their investment within four quite lucrative in the long term. years, while even a modest scheme will pay back within seven if it Roger Parry & Partners, a firm Richard Corbett is installed under the Renewable Heat Incentive Scheme (RHI) – a of estate and lettings agents, land project that can give businesses and landowners financial incentives agents, chartered surveyors and planning consultants with a to increase their use and reliance on renewable heat sources. wide range of land and property-related services and expertise, has offices in Shrewsbury, Minsterley, Oswestry, Welshpool, For more information on the benefits of GSHPS, call Powys and Carmarthenshire and is urging people across the Richard on 01691 655334 or email richard@rogerparrynet region to consider the benefits of installing a GSHP system.

Leighton Park Heritage Buildings development hits the halfway mark Ed Beedles and Alistair Price


ork to transform a derelict hospital in Shrewsbury into luxury apartments and houses has reached the midway point. The team from Shropshire Homes is now working on the Central Hall, once the main entrance into the Victorian hospital and the centrepiece of the Bicton Heath development. ‘It’s great to have reached the halfway point in the transformation,’ says site manager Ed Beedles. Ed started work on the site almost four years ago, when he helped to create the first phase of three- and four-bedroom houses in the grounds of the former hospital. ‘When we were working on the new builds, it was daunting to think of starting work on the former hospital,’ he says. ‘There are always issues when working on old buildings, but thankfully there have only been design and structural issues – it has involved a lot of structural work.’ Leighton Park is one of Shrewsbury’s most popular developments, and it isn’t surprising when visitors take in the wooded parkland setting, bowling green and cricket pavilion. The luxury homes and apartments may be located just a few minutes’ drive from the centre

Heritage Buildings’ Central Hall

Before the renovation

of Shrewsbury, but they provide a breath of fresh air to those looking for an oasis of calm on the outskirts of the medieval market town. The grade II-listed building is being preserved, with features such as the large sash windows and high ceilings proving popular with buyers. ‘Preserving such features is vital when converting the building into luxury homes,’ says Ed. ‘It involves a lot of patience, skill and time. The final phase of the Heritage Buildings is the East Wing, which mirrors what we’ve already have done, so we expect to face the same problems and be prepared for them. ‘It’s great when you stand back and see how fabulous the new homes and apartments look. Each one is individual and filled with character, and some of the apartments we are creating have beautiful window seats and bedrooms on spectacular mezzanine floors. These homes certainly have the wow factor.’ Leighton Park’s Heritage Buildings offer one-, two-and threebedroom homes. Call sales adviser Karen on 01743 368766

100 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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EVERY HOME NEEDS A HUT Garden hideaways have an enduring appeal, and one Shropshire company is seeing a surge in demand for their bespoke huts

structures, including shepherd’s huts, showman’s wagons and caravans, which make great alternatives to the traditional shed. They can be an alternative office, spare bedroom, adult wendy house, potting shed, bird hide, attractive addition to a campsite, alternative workshop, home cinema or even a roadside tea wagon.’

Anything is possible

The Huts & Stuff team create their inspiring structures using as much locally sourced materials as possible. Everything is made by the team apart from the wheels, which are made by a local firm, and the end uses of the buildings have ranged hugely over the years. ‘More people working from home these days, and our ‘We enjoy building huts make great offices,’ says Dave. ‘But we’ve also built anything bird hides, playrooms, model railway huts, huts with saunas out of the inside and even a hot tub that we took to Norway. We’ll ordinary’ consider anything and we particularly enjoy doing anything out of the ordinary. At the moment we’re finishing a replica railway carriage based on a 1930s GWR style. Each hut is a bespoke build with as much input from the customer as they want to give. ‘Customers can have a hut fully finished and ready to use, or at Huts can be put to many uses any stage of construction for them to do their own thing. We’re also uts & Stuff is a small family-run business in Church Stoke on happy to work around recovered windows and flooring that customers the Powys/Shropshire border, started over 18 years ago with the bring to us for their own unique look. We can even construct renovation of a 20ft showman’s wagon. The project was the start of them on site without too much upheaval if access is an issue.’ an incredible journey for the company, who have been building ‘stuff ’ ever since, as Dave Gregory explains. ‘We’ve built everything from To discuss the hut of your dreams, call 01588 620132, email narrow boats to our family home,’ he says. ‘We can build great garden davestilthouse@googlemail.com or visit www.hutsandstuff.co.uk




A perfect pod?

pod from Lowfield Timber Frames is a great way to make the most of your land and even bring in some extra income. LTF Accommodation Pods are available in two to six berths and have separate bathrooms with a double shower or bath area, heating and electricity, creating a perfect holiday let that can be used all year round. You can make the most of your garden space with the Snug Pod, which has a large living space in which to relax and unwind. It benefits from a storage compartment to one side for all your garden essentials. Work from home? Outgrown your existing office? The Office Pod is available in either an eight-metre or six-metre length and can help you create a better work/life balance.

The possibilities for the pods are endless – gym, studio, workshop… whatever you want your pod to be, LTF will try its best to make it happen. With different options and finishes available, you’ll soon find your perfect pod. One of the best things about an LTF pod is that it is completely portable. So if you decide to move house, you can move your pod with you. If you’d like to experience a Show Pod for yourself, Lowfield Timber Frames will be at Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod from the 1st to 7th of July and at the Shrewsbury Flower Show on 9th and 10th August. For more information on LTF pods, call 01743 298974 or email pods@ltf.uk.com

Garden power


eeping your garden neat and tidy needn’t be a chore if you have the right tools to help you. Morgans Machinery, based in Oswestry, Shropshire, stocks a variety of equipment for big and small gardens, and its experienced staff will be able to guide you through the available options to ensure you find the right machine for you and your garden. DID YOU Morgans is an authorised dealer KNOW? for Honda, Atco, Hayter, Stihl, Morgans Viking, Westwood and Husqvarna Morgans has pressure washers Machinery was to maintain your paved areas, – all leading makes in the garden established hedge cutters, brush cutters and machinery industry – and has a in 1995 good range of machines in the strimmers for the edges, scarifiers showroom for you to see, from to restore your lawn to good health, cordless battery-powered garden shears blowers and vacuums to tidy up leaves, shredders and chippers… the list goes on. to petrol-driven ride-on mowers that are There really is something for everyone, suitable for cutting big areas, and even the new robotic mowers. It’s one of life’s pleasures so if you want to keep your garden in good shape get down to Morgans Machinery! being able to sit back with a drink in hand watching a very capable machine mowing the lawn for you, giving an enviable finish! For more information, call 01691 670500 As well as all types of lawn mowers, or visit www.morgansmachinery.co.uk

Be beside the sea

The latest fragrance from luxury candlemaker Dexter & Mason, Rock Salt & Driftwood, is perfect for the summer. The ocean-scented candle transports you to refreshing strolls by the sea, with an evocative tang of fresh air and sea spray, combined with the richer tones of rock pools. It makes a fresh and uplifting alternative to classic floral fragrances, and like all of Dexter & Mason’s candles is made from clean-burning soy wax and hand-blended oils. Buy online at dexterandmason.com.

102 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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The fresh scent of sea spray and salty air...

plumbing & heating


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on New Worcester Boilers with 11 years warranty Finally, a local company providing affordable monthly payment options for new Worcester Boilers. We also Service & Repair existing Gas, LPG and Oil Boilers. With monthly service plans also available from £6.50 per month.



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Finance subject to status. On new Worcester boilers only. Terms and conditions apply. 11 y ears warranty subject to active service plan.

SIMON BOYD Artwork Shire QPC - July/Aug Issue.indd 1

12/06/2019 16:58


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We talk to Tim Morgan about his family’s business Hafren Furnishers, the largest independent furniture store in Wales, from its origins more than 50 years ago to the present day…


‘We deliver anywhere in England and Wales free of charge – that’s afren Furnishers may be located in the a big part of our customer service – and take away old furniture town of Llanidloes in Powys, but its including mattresses and all the packaging. We have so many items enviable reputation has spread far and wide, in stock, it’s quite likely we can arrange immediate delivery. We have with satisfied customers returning from all five delivery teams out on the road, and they’re kept busy all the time! over Wales and England. Tim Morgan and ‘The internet has had an impact on retail – we find that customers his brother, Paul, run the business, with their like to do their research before coming into the store, and you have sister, Charlotte, working in the showroom. to have a fully transactional website so people can buy online if they Their mother, Anna, is the proprietor, and wish to. But we also find that has been integral to Tim Morgan most people want to come the family business to the store in person – with since its inception. furniture you do really need Their father Mike – who sadly passed to see it, sit on the couches away in 2017 – started Hafren 54 years and lie on the mattresses. ago, buying and selling the odd piece of furniture from his milk float while Mike on his float A special store delivering milk from his family’s farm. ‘People come to the store He then did a whole house clearance; this was the turning point as part of a day out in when Mike decided to move into the furniture business for good. The store has seven floors Llanidloes,’ Tim continues. ‘He was a real pioneer,’ says Tim. ‘In those days, no one talked ‘The café here is very popular, and the town boasts several excellent about diversifying from farming – it was assumed he would independent stores. There is also spectacular walking continue to run the family farm, so it was a surprise nearby, with the Hafren Forest and Clywedog Reservoir. to the whole family. He was very brave to take ‘People know they ‘We take recycling very seriously here. Every item of that first step into selling furniture full time.’ can see and touch furniture arrives in plenty of cardboard, polythene and every type of Legacy business polystyrene to minimise damage in transit – more than armchair, sofa, bed, table and chair, and In the hands of his wife and children, Mike’s legacy is 90 per cent of which we can now recycle. We’ve recently that is one reason still at the forefront of the business today. ‘We still own purchased a polystyrene recycling machine to make this they come to Hafren the original building in the town centre,’ says Tim. more efficient, and old mattresses are sent to a specialist – as we offer the ‘My early childhood was spent helping out in facility where they’re taken apart and recycled. . widest choice’ the store, learning the things that proved to be so ‘A core value we work by is to never underestimate important in making our business successful. My how important great customer service is – the feedback dad was a very friendly and sociable character, with a remarkable and testimonials we get from happy customers mean so much to us because it shows we are doing something right! We also know that memory – he would never forget a face or a customer, and we’d find they would cross the country to come back. He was having a huge inventory of stock, and over 80,000ft2 of displays also extremely trusting and able to build up great customer on seven floors for every room in the house, is very important. relationships – when a new couple got married and wanted to ‘Customers know they can see and touch every type of armchair, furnish their house, he would let them pay it off when they could. sofa, bed, table and chair, and that is one reason they come to Hafren. ‘Mike genuinely cared about customers, and always put them We believe there will always be a place for bricks and mortar retail in first. He also had the foresight to buy stock at the right price, the furniture business and look forward to another 50 years!’ knowing there was always storage available in mid Wales. The foundations were laid, so when my brother, Paul, and I took over CONTACT the business it was a case of modernising certain aspects to move Hafren Furnishers with the times, without effecting the customer and service ethos. Border Showrooms, Like Mike, we’re really hands-on with the business, directly Llangurig Road, Llanidloes, involved in all aspects of running the business and endeavour to Powys SY18 6ES engage with customers in the showroom as often as we can. (just off the A470) ‘Our staff don’t work on commission and won’t try to upsell Tel: 01686 414000 www.hafrenfurnishers.co.uk warranties that our customers don’t need. We give honest advice, identifying the right products for our customers and Mon-Fri, 9am-6pm (8pm on the best value. On price, Hafren has always been regarded as Thurs); Sat, 9am-5.30pm very competitive and usually we beat everything out there. Hafren was 50 years old in 2015 July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 105

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New Homes BARN OF BEAUTY One Shropshire couple have just completed the creation of their own stunning home, which is a reflection of the design credentials they demonstrate in the business they run together


f you’re looking for self-build inspiration, then look no further than this stunning barn in Ellesmere. The majority Sarah and Josh’s stunning barn of the work here was done by the owners, Sarah and Josh, and the use of complementary materials to who have plenty of experience and design ideas to bring to create stylish and unique looks. Specialising the project as they also work together creating interior and in polished concrete in particular, Josh exterior home statements for other people. also creates unique statement pieces Sarah originally qualified and worked as an equine for inside or outside people’s homes, vet, but developed an interest and business in property – ‘Josh and after discussing their requirements, especially high-end design and contemporary co-living Sarah have drawing up ideas on CAD and spaces for students who focused on making each bespoke piece by hand. are looking for quality an ecoBetween them, Josh and Sarah accommodation during friendly living have built a contemporary home full their study. Five years concept’ of bespoke furniture in a gorgeous later, she has reflected Unexpected elements setting and this approach in her focusing on own home, showing an eco-friendly her passion for interior and exterior and sustainable design, as well as researching the living concept. health benefits of indoor planting to air quality and wellness in your home. Find out more Dream team about Sarah’s Josh, meanwhile, qualified with a interior creations degree in civil engineering and uses and Josh’s bespoke the knowledge he gained along with concrete designs at his flare for contemporary design www.urban-b.co.uk Beautiful finishes High-end design


The show home is open Thursday to Monday


urrounded by the beautiful Shropshire Hills and DID YOU a pleasant walk from Shrewsbury’s vibrant KNOW? town centre, Sweetlake Meadow on Longden Two top-rated Road is an exciting housing development. A secondary selection of exquisite two-, three-, four- and schools are five-bedroom homes are ready to reserve today, within walking and you can take the opportunity to explore the distance stunning show home from Thursday to Monday. Designed specifically with family life in mind, the Mytton has plenty to offer. A spacious kitchen-dining area provides ample

room for family gatherings, while a generous garden and patio to the rear make the most of the summer rays. With four double bedrooms, every family member is also sure to have enough space to be themselves, and with two en-suite bathrooms there is no reason to be late for school or work again. SJ Roberts Homes is part of the SJ Roberts Group, which was founded more than 30 years ago. It is committed to building Definite kerb appeal new homes to the highest standards, meeting and exceeding current building regulations. It is part of the SJ Roberts , which puts the company in the best position to ensure all its properties are of the highest quality.

Designed for family living

Special touches

106 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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£169,950 ~ £259,950 • • • •

Large sash windows High ceilings Contemporary interiors Period architecture



Help to Buy 21/06/2019 14:59



www.lowfieldtimberframes.co.uk Call: 01743 891922 Email: enquiries@ltf.uk.com Lowfield Timber Frames, Marton, Welshpool, Powys, SY21 8JX 108_SHIREJA2019.indd 1

21/06/2019 15:11


A MODERN TIMBER-FRAMED HOME OF YOUR OWN Darren Jarman, managing director of Lowfield Timber Frames, shows us around his new home and explains why modern timber-frame construction is the way forward for self-builders

‘For those who want to design and build their own home, timber-frame construction offers a lot of advantages. It can give people the look and feel of a fully oak-framed building, with “exposed” feature beams. Our frames are also made to high specification in a quality-controlled factory on the Shropshire/Wales border, so the buildings have much better thermal performance and air tightness. In fact, we’re Gold members of the Structural Timber Association and have an ISO 9001 quality management system, which means we adhere to strict standards in everything we do. ‘Modern timber-frame buildings are quick to The open central living area assemble on site – the structure can be assembled in two to three weeks, which makes the whole project s we approach our 20th anniversary, Lowfield progress a lot more smoothly with fewer delays. Timber Frames is one of the largest employers Timber is also more environmentally in the area, with nearly 100 staff. We friendly than other building materials. supply timber-frame buildings all over ‘It gives the Our timber is from sustainable sources; the country for large projects, such as look and feel of an in fact, the timber industry plants hotels, schools and care homes, through oak-framed more trees than it uses, making it a to self-build homes for private clients. timber carbon neutral building material. ‘For our self-build clients, we ask for building’ ‘At Lowfield Timber Frames, we an architect’s initial drawings of their have got a huge amount of experience dream home – which doesn’t have to with self-build projects, and we are always ready be specifically for a timber-frame construction. We’ll then provide a quotation and can be on to help. We also encourage people to make an site within eight weeks to start the build. In the appointment at our premises in Welshpool, where you can see first hand what goes into the meantime, we provide a foundation layout and construction. We’ve grown a lot, but we’re still a any scaffolding requirements. It’s a great route for family business at heart – we know how important self-builders, who generally want to manage all a self-build project is to our customers.’ the other trades and oversee their own project.


Tour Darren’s house


e knew we wanted to make the best of the views, so we thought really carefully about the position of the main windows and the glass doors. We also knew that we wanted a big open

central area with the kitchen connected to the living room. I used this project to try out some of the new technologies for homes, so we have an air source heat pump that assists with the under-floor heating, and a mechanical ventilation and heat-recovery system, which means all the moisture and odours in the air – such as from the kitchen or bathrooms – are filtered out and expelled, but the heat is kept inside and recycled through the house. Because the house uses modern timberframed panels, the air tightness is very good so the whole system runs really efficiently. When we bought the bathroom suites, we chose a lot

of ex-display units that wouldn’t have been our first choice. But they were so reasonable, and meant we could decorate the bathrooms around them. We’re pleased with the result!’ CONTACT Lowfield Timber Frames Marton, nr Welshpool, Powys SY21 8JX Tel: 01743 891922 Email: enquiries@ltf.uk.com www.lowfield timberframes.co.uk Lowfield was founded in 2000 and is part of the SJR Group, which includes SJ Roberts Construction and SJ Roberts Homes. The chair and founder is Steve Roberts.

Tips for self-builders

Having recently gone through the process himself, Darren is well positioned to share some advice on what every selfbuilder should think about 1. ‘Things happen fast on site, so always plan ahead. Think about your electrical switches, sockets and lighting before you get asked. The question will come almost as soon as the frame is up.’ 2. ‘Consider the views very carefully, including at different times of day. A good friend advised, “If you have option on where to situate the house, imagine where you would pitch your tent if you were camping there!”’ 3. ‘Write a wishlist of your priorities for the new house and show this to your architect – you might be surprised what is possible.’ 4. ‘Let the architect come up with different sketches – the more time spent thinking and planning, the better.’ 5. ‘Think about buying exdisplay bathroom suites and other sale items such as lighting beforehand – the dimensions may be crucial to the design or size of the bathroom, and the style can set the tone and style for the whole room.’ 6. ‘Be brave with colours. Pick up bargains, even if you don’t know exactly where it will end up.’ 7. ‘Come and talk to Lowfield for further advice!’

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 109

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3 4



Bathe your home in light with muted mustards and golds, pale lemons or the brightest egg-yolk hue, or choose subtle accents to jazz up a classic grey theme







1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14.

Alfredo sofa in turmeric, £899 reduced from £1,699, Stokers Furniture, Chester; www.stokers.co.uk Madam Stoltz woven storage baskets, £51 for two, Hurn & Hurn; www.hurnandhurn.com Cordoba chair, £629 reduced from £899, Annetts Fine Furniture; annetts.co.uk Joules Windsor king-size bedframe in yellow velvet, £1,099, DFS; www.dfs.co.uk Block Hello coat rack, £38, Red Candy; www.redcandy.co.uk Wildflower made-to-measure roller blinds, from £24.10, English Blinds; www.englishblinds.co.uk Ludic yellow pineapple wallpaper, £75, Woodchip & Magnolia; www.woodchipandmagnolia.co.uk Geo diamond cushion, £6.99, The Range; www.therange.co.uk Catalina table lamp, £14, Soho Home; www.sohohouse.com Kae Collection popping yellow chair, £340, exclusive to The French Bedroom Company; www.frenchbedroomcompany.co.uk Orla Kiely 70s-inspired flower small plant bag in dandelion yellow, £22, Wild & Wolf; store.wildandwolf.co.uk Stolen Form ceramic brick vase, £34, Mostyn, Llandudno; www.mostyn.org Everhot cooker in mustard, £9,195, RN Williams & Sons, St Asaph; www.rnwilliams.co.uk Tweedmill throw in mustard, £49.99, Meirion Mill, Machynlleth; www.meirionmill.co.uk



110 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

Home Shopping JulyAug 2019 jwDB.indd 1

21/06/2019 16:04

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21/06/2019 15:10

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Full Day Courses from only £50 Have you got a small piece of furniture you would like to up-cycle? Come along to a “Paint Your Own Piece” furniture painting workshop. To book simply call 07803 313278 or email countrycommissions@gmail.com www.furniturepaintingservices.co.uk

Wreathen Works Personalised Anniversary & Wedding Gifts Mark that special day with a Custom Oak Bench or Bread Board.

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21/06/2019 15:12

Plants&Gardens ADD A SPLASH OF INTEREST TO YOUR GARDEN A new initiative from two charities is urging people to considering installing a pond in their gardens to help protect the UK’s flora and fauna


he Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) and the Wildlife Trust are calling on people to put in a pond. Whether it’s a mini container pond or large sunken variety, a pond is the single garden feature that can make the biggest difference to wildlife. With much of the UK’s native flora and fauna under threat often owing to habitat loss, the iniative Wild About Gardens is raising awareness of the importance of gardens in supporting wildlife and offer tips and advice on how to make them more wildlife-friendly. The UK has lost ponds, rivers and streams at a rapid Green hawker dragonfly rate in recent decades and only a small amount of our natural ponds and wetlands remain. Many of these are in poor condition and 13 per cent of freshwater and wetland species are threatened with extinction. The loss of these important places – to development, drainage and intensive farming – is linked

to a huge decline in wildlife, including Brodie from the Wildlife Trusts. ‘All you frogs and toads, water voles and insects. need to do is fill an old sink or washingIn Cheshire, the lesser silver up bowl with rainwater, plant it up and water beetle thrives in several make sure that wildlife can get in DID YOU KNOW? farm ponds, and the spawn of and out – it’s easy! I love watching Rainwater is the rare natterjack toad has bright blue damselflies landing on the best water been found in coastal ponds on the irises in my pond – they’re so to use in your the Cheshire Wildlife Trust’s beautiful and it’s great knowing new pond Red Rocks Nature Reserve. I’m helping local wildlife.’ Even UK mammals such as the water vole or otter enjoy the benefits Download your free pond toolkit of freshwater ponds, as they’ll eat the green and find more inspiration for making vegetation from in and around the pool. your garden a wildlife haven at www.wildaboutgardens.org.uk

Do your bit

Adding a pond – by digging one in your back garden or simply by filling a waterproof container outside your front door – is one of the best ways you can help wildlife and enjoy the benefits of seeing water plants, birds and bees close to home. Ponds provide places for hedgehogs to drink and frogs, newts and other amphibians to feed and breed. They’re also good news for bats, damselflies, dragonflies, other insects. ‘It’s such fun to help wildlife with a pocket pond – it needn’t be big,’ says Ellie

PERFECT PLANTS FOR YOUR POND Choosing the right horticulture to top of your pond is vital, whether it is for underwater oxygenation, floating decoration, animal welfare or just to finish off the design. Here are Shire’s top recommendations Submerged plants

These produce oxygen during the day and provide cover for aquatic life. One particular favourite that produces beautiful lilac flowers in the summer is Hottonia palustris (water violet) – just make sure not to move or plant Water violet in the summer.

Floating plants

The presence of plants on the surface of your pond reduces the amount of sunlight Frogbit penetrating the water and keeps the water cooler, discouraging algae. One pretty addition that produces small white flowers

Ponds come in all sizes

and sinks to the bottom in winter is the Hydrocharis morsus-ranae (frogbit).

Plants for deep ponds

If your pond is deeper than a foot you can choose larger, more invasive plants than for Water hawthorn a smaller pond. Aponogeton distachyos (water hawthorn) offers lovely fragrant white flowers – but beware, it is also a favourite with water snails who will eat and kill it.

For shallow ponds

There are lots of options for ponds with depths between

5cm and 15cm, including some stunning iris varieties. We like Iris laevigata AGM, which bursts into life with rich blue flowers in June.



No pond is complete without a waterlily but it must be chosen according to depth of water. Very deep ponds like Nymphaea alba, while midWaterlily depth water is good for Nymphaea ‘Rose Arey’. A shallow pond could handle Nymphaea ‘Pygmaea Helvola’.

July/August July/August2019 2019 || SHIRE SHIREMAGAZINE MAGAZINE 113 111

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21/06/2019 15:39


CALIFORNIA DREAMING Summer is still in full swing in this opulent and colourful floral creation from floristry technician Dave Billington from Reaseheath College in Nantwich


he season is calmer now and our gardens are becoming more luxuriant and blousy as our plants mature and our beds fill with foliage and flowers, bees and butterflies. The theme chosen for this edition’s floral workshop mirrors this sumptuous theme, with an opulent hand-tied design that Dave has created using an open, American style. Dave says the calming palette of green, cream, yellow and white, interspersed with brilliant blue, makes him think of the lavish lifestyle of a Californian summer, and he uses it here to introduce a touch of luxury to a summer barbecue or special event. ‘I’ve tried to keep this design summery but fresh,’ Dave explains. ‘I’ve aimed for a domed profile but with a loose under layer that is a little wild and natural looking – a bit like late summer. I would like to think that most of us could gain inspiration from our gardens and find at least some of the plant materials I’ve used here in their own flower borders.’

What you’ll need

To recreate the display on this page, you will need the following, all available from florist shops: • Eucalyptus • Ruscus aculeatus (butcher’s broom) • Gemini, a small-headed gerbera • 2 agapanthus • 2 trachelium • Rosa sprays in yellow • 2 alstromeria in white and green • Parrot tulips (if out of season, replace with roses or other large blooms) • Paper-covered wire

Slowly rotate the design, gradually building up the flower colours, keeping an even spread and leaving space between the blooms so you can admire them individually. Remember – you are aiming for rhythm and visual balance. Step 4

Step 5

Tie off with wire. Make a thumb loop in your wire and hold securely in your left hand.

Step 5

Step 6

Step 7

Step 6

Wrap the wire round your tie point a few times and pass back through loop.

Step 1

Clean all stems, removing any prickles, leaves and buds. Select one flower as a focal point for your design (here Dave has chosen agapanthus).

Step 7

Pull tight and then feed between stems for extra strength. Return to your tie point, thread through the loop, make another turn, knot firmly and cut the thread neatly.

Step 2

Holding your focal flower firmly in your left hand, create a scaffolding around it using the short-stemmed foliage of ruscus and eucalyptus.

Step 4

Step 8 Step 1

Step 3

Add in the trachelium and rosa, keeping your left hand firmly at your tie point (two-thirds of the way down the stem).

Step 8 Trim the stems at an angle to increase the cut surface, enabling the flowers and foliage to draw up more water and last longer. Once finished, your design should stand up on its own. Place in vase and admire.

TOP TIP Adding a little commercial flower food to the water should keep the flowers fresh for up to 10 days.

Step 2

Step 3

For more about Reaseheath’s floristry department, visit www.reaseheath. ac.uk/floristry

The final design

114 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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21/06/2019 15:39

Gate Expectations

HOLLY FARM is a family run

garden centre and traditional growing nursery in North Shropshire, offering a wide selection of plants, coffee shop and friendly advice.

Inwood (Cymru) Ltd

` ade to measure

wooden gates and side hinged garage doors

01745 362 444

www.woodworkersuk.co.uk enquiries@woodworkersuk.co.uk Come and see us in our workshop! Unit A1, Cefndy Industrial Park, Cefndy Road, Rhyl, Denbighshire, LL18 2HJ

Tel: 01948 840630 OPEN

Open : Mon – Thurs 9.00am – 4.30pm, Fri 9.00am – 3.00pm Closed for lunch each day 12.30pm – 1.00pm

Monday to Saturday: 9am to 5.30pm Sunday: 10am xto 4pm

Whitchurch Road (A49), Prees, Shropshire SY13 2DD www.hollyfarmgardencentre.co.uk • Holly Farm Garden Centre

lo er Hmelm


J Mo oin us ld F ood at the Fes tiva l



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21/06/2019 15:13

Glyndwr Plants Summer Time! W

e have an enormous selection of fantastic plants for bedding and baskets, plus wonderful ready-filled baskets and pots too. There’s also a fine selection of unusual perennials. We have plants for every type of gardener!

Huts & Stuff Our Shepherds Huts are Perfect for Spare Rooms, Model railways, Craft & Hobby rooms, Garden Retreats, Glamping, or just because you love them.

Relax in our coffee shop or on the patio and enjoy a selection of our scrumptious homemade cakes and scones. Choose from our menu of delicious light lunches, freshly ground coffees and various teas too.

We have been building bespoke Shepherds uts, Wagons and stuff in mid Wales or o er years rices start rom , Nationwide & European Delivery Visitors welcome by appointment To order or discuss your requirements Contact David and John on 01588 620132 Mob: 07300 013032 Email: davestilthouse@gmail.com www.hutsandstuff.co.uk

Coffee shop 01490 413 688 | Garden Centre 01490 413 313 The Centre is on the A5104, half a mile out of Corwen www.glyndwrplants.co.uk

Come and see us at... Newport Show, Shropshire TF10 8EH: 13th July 2019 Shrewsbury Flower Show SY1 1RN: 9th/10th August 2019 Stoke Prior Steam Rally, Bromsgrove B60 4LF: 14th/15th Sept 2019


Taste the difference Grow your own Many sizes available



Various designs & sizes

SUM M ERHOUSES Come and see our NEW RANGE of contemporary models at our SHOW ROOM

01978 852896

Carlton Garden Centre

Pinfold Lane, Llay, Wrexham, LL12 OTL www.carltonbuildings.co.uk

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When the sun shines, make space in the garden by creating a whole new room. Add stylish seating, a barbecue and bright accessories to make your garden the perfect place to relax, socialise and play 10-litre watering can, £40, Garden Trading; www.gardentrading.co.uk

Bar gazebo, £299.99 (reduced from £399.99), The Range; www.therange.co.uk

Bamboo lantern, £53, Andshine; www. andshine.co.uk Jambi hand-woven garden lounger, £220, Habitat; www.habitat.co.uk Barbecue essential tools willow basket set, £60, Historic Royal Palaces; www. historicroyalpalaces.com

Pergola, Morgans Builders Merchants, Oswestry

Citronella glo lites, from £2.65, Price’s; www.pricescandles.co.uk

Boho chilli string lights, £14, Talking Tables; www. talkingtables.co.uk

Quan Quadro small wood-fired barbecue, £690, Cuckooland; www.cuckooland.com

HOME FROM HOME Take outdoor living to a whole new level with a timber living space chalet, office, games room or extra bedroom designed and built by Woodworks Timber Buildings. For further information, call 01352 752555 (ext.3) or visit www. woodworksgc.com/woodworks-timber-buildings

Oak bench, from £75 to £150 (inc delivery), Wreathen Works; wreathenworks.co.uk

Indu metal slatted garden bench with arms, £175, Habitat; www.habitat.co.uk

Ridley’s Pigs Will Fly giant kite, £17, Wild & Wolf; store.wild andwolf.co.uk

Smart Solar Llama Rama, £17.99, Littlewoods; www.littlewoods.com

Inflatable flamingo ring toss game, £24, Sunny Life; uk.sunnylife.com

Ridley’s Wooden Boules Set, £21.95, Annabel James; www.annabeljames.co.uk

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 117

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DaysOut PETAL POWER We celebrate summer in all its glory with our round-up of the region’s best days out for flower fans RHS Flower Show Tatton Park 17th-21st July, Knutsford, Cheshire


he Royal Horticultural Society returns to Cheshire this summer with yet another explosion of colour at Tatton Park. The schedule is jam-packed with show-stopping plants, hands-on workshops and cutting-edge designers. Whether you need inspiration for your garden borders, want to indulge in some retail therapy, or are looking for a funfilled day out with all of the family, there’s something for everyone at Tatton Park. New special features this year include a dazzling display of more than 5,000 dahlias, plus the chance to learn all about garden bugs. Visitors can see

what goes on beyond the blades of grass in your garden and dive into the wonderful world of creepy crawlies in a brand new interactive feature, the Bug Hub. Discover the lifecycle of insects, find out how to attract pollinators to your garden and learn to garden in harmony with some of the world’s wriggliest creatures. On top of all this, you can expect the usual stalls, displays, talks and mile after mile of plants and flowers to admire and buy. www.rhs.org.uk/shows-events/ rhs-flower-show-tatton-park

Prestatyn Flower Show 26th-27th July, Denbighshire


his traditional two-day flower show blends DID YOU a relaxing, garden fête KNOW? atmosphere with serious This year is the and fun competitions and festival’s 25th anniversary! professional judging. With prize-winning exhibits, arts and crafts, beautiful plants and garden furniture for sale, classic car displays, delicious refreshments and afternoon teas, relaxing live jazz and traditional brass band music, there is always something for everyone to enjoy

in the centre of the north Wales town. Full details of all events will be posted on the festival’s website in the weeks leading up to the grand opening. Register on the site to receive updates; you can also add comments, share and discuss gardening and growing advice, and get tips on the forums. www.prestatynflowershow.co.uk

Shrewsbury Flower Show 9th-10th August, Quarry Lodge, Shrewsbury


his year marks the 132nd edition of one of the country’s premier flower shows, which attracts top exhibitors from all over the country. Shrewsbury Flower Show features TV personalities, celebrity chefs, singers and spectacular arena acts, entertaining the crowds for 12 hours on both days, with both the Friday and Saturday ending with a magnificent finale and firework display. The show has a small permanent staff and more than 100 volunteers who manage and organise the whole event, from traffic flow, marquee and services contracts, publicity

and marketing, public safety, catering and entertainment, and engaging specialist judges for hundreds of competitive classes. The main attraction is the Quarry Marquee, which is home to the top national nurseries and growers, who create stunning displays to admire and inspire. Judging of the Quarry Marquee takes place on the eve of the show, which means all the winners can display the awards and trophies they received during the two days of events. A great day out for gardeners, florists and families. www.shrewsbury flowershow.org.uk

118 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Wem‘The home of the Sweet Pea’, invites you to visit


30th CELEBRATION SHOW Saturday 20th July, 10am to 5pm Sunday 21st July, 10am to 4pm



Come and visit this small market town and experience the heady atmosphere of colour and perfume produced each year inWem, North Shropshire... ‘The Home of the Modern Sweet Pea’.

The only Fibreglass Nestboxes made on the Planet. Bespoke design for each species. Every purchase carries a twenty five year guarantee. The first choice of ornithologists and many professional naturalists, and of course the birds love them. Contact information. For full details of all our products. Go to :Website. www.impeckable.co.uk Facebook. Impeckable Nestboxes and Feeders Telephone. 07554 385878 E Mail. info@impeckable.co.uk Address. 25 High Street Brymbo Wrexham LL11 5BL

Thomas Adams School Stanier Hall, High Street,Wem SY4 5DS

Admission: Adults £3 Members & Children Free All undercover with wheelchair access to all areas including refreshments. Disabled parking at venue - Town parking 500yards.


So much more than a Flower Show! Attractions for all ages including impressive displays of vegetables, fruits and flowers from our amateur Download exhibitors in the Severn Marquee, stunning floral arrangements, advice our free app from our celebrity gardener David today! Domoney, exciting arena entertainment for all the family, food, crafts & trade Search ‘Shrewsbury stands, cookery demonstrations by Flower Show’ in TV chef John Torode; live music your app store. both evenings and all topped off with world class fireworks.

Shropshire Horticultural Society Charity Number: 501564

Friday 9th & Saturday 10th August 2019

Advance Discount Tickets Available until Thursday 1st August

Call 01743 234058 or visit www.shrewsburyflowershow.org.uk

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with SHAKEY THE SHARK Passports at the ready as we take you on a journey and relive Shakey the Sharks holiday and the stories he made from his visit to the Northern streams, flooded forest, Lake Malawi, Rock pools and finally his journey across the ocean.



Duration 1 Hour 2 Hour

Adult £ 10.00 £ 16.00

Child £ 5.00 £ 8.00

• Daily trips from New Quay, Ceredigion, Wales, SA45 9NW • Dogs welcome • Group discounts Ask for details

All photographs taken by our skippers during recent trips

Tel 01545 560 800 / 375 BOOK ONLINE Email info@newquayboattrips.co.uk

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RETURN OF THE TERNS After a long and hazardous journey across the globe, beautiful sea swallows – or terns – have been arriving in their hundreds back at Cemlyn Nature Reserve on Anglesey


fter a long, dreary winter, summer days are finally here and the seas around the UK are once again coming to life. From all around the world, thousands of birds are making their long way back to our coast to take advantage of the wealth of food available here. And at Cemlyn Nature Reserve, the North Wales Wildlife Trust will be there to welcome them home and make sure their stay will be safe and productive. Regarded as the jewel in the crown of Anglesey’s Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, Cemlyn Reserve is valued for its exceptional landscape and wildlife, offering year-round opportunities for visitors to DID YOU experience nature on land KNOW? and sea and in the sky. In Birds have been addition to being a Wildlife monitored at Cemlyn since Trust Reserve, Cemlyn is also 1981 protected under European and UK law as a Special Protection Area, Special Area of Conservation and a Site of Special Scientific Interest.

Perfect location for seabirds

The reserve is centred around a large brackish water lagoon, separated from the sea by a spectacular, naturally created shingle ridge and protected on its landward side by traditional, lowintensity farmland. During the summer months, small islands Sandwich tern in the lagoon are home to one of the most important tern colonies in the UK, and Wales’s only colony of sandwich terns. Cemlyn Reserve’s international importance for breeding terns is recognised by its inclusion within the scope of the Roseate Tern LIFE Project.

CUTE PETS Cemlyn Reserve

Under this EU-funded project and in partnership with the RSPB and BirdWatch Ireland, NWWT’s work at Cemlyn aims to protect, conserve and build residence for Cemlyn’s wildlife and natural habitats. This work includes specific goals of providing nesting habitat for all of the tern species, whether or not they are present on the site.

Safe and attractive

Actively helping wildlife, even in small ways, can really make a difference to their continued survival, and over the past few years the Wildlife Trust has worked hard to make Cemlyn Nature Reserve, on Anglesey’s north coast, an attractive and safe place for terns to nest and rear their young. These remarkable and beautiful birds travel thousands of miles from Antarctica and South Africa to raise their young on tiny islands in Cemlyn’s lagoon, linking north Wales with the seas and oceans across the world. This fantastic journey highlights how what happens in the southern oceans can affect us here in north Wales.

Winnie, the Newfoundland puppy looking smart

Bubba and Hubba

Fern on the old racecourse near Oswestry

WE WANT YOUR PETS! Send us a photo of your pet for inclusion in Shire! Just email the picture, with the name of your pet, to editorial@ shiremagazine.co.uk

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 121

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YOUR PUFFINS NEED YOU! Our friends at the RSPB are hoping Shire’s readers can once again help them to protect the region’s puffins this summer


uffins are up there with the world’s favourite birds. Eye-catching characters and popular symbols for books, they are also truly unmistakable, with their black backs and white underparts, distinctive heads with large pale cheeks and tall, flattened, brightly coloured bills. Their comical appearance is further emphasised by their red and black eye-markings and bright orange legs. But puffins are in real danger. Half of the UK population is found at only a few sites and we hold real concern for their future. In recent years their numbers across the UK and

The north Wales coast is home to puffins

Europe have plummeted, leading to the species being declared vulnerable to global extinction – with further declines of between 50 and 79 per cent estimated by 2065. Warming seas, caused by climate change, affecting puffins’ food sources, are thought to be one of the main threats to their future.

Citizen support

Back in 2017, the RSBP asked for your help with Project Puffin’s Puffarazzi campaign, as we aimed to combine the latest technology with citizen science to tackle the birds’ sharp decline. Thanks to you sending more than 1,400 photos of puffins carrying fish, we identified a total of 12,182 fish. This provided us the first UKwide snapshot of what puffins are feeding their chicks, which will prove crucial as we help puffins to thrive in the future. Your photos can help! This summer, we are asking for your help once again. Just like last time, we’re hoping to gather as many photos as possible featuring puffins with prey in their beaks. The only difference this time is that the photos can be from any year. All we ask is that you know which year the photo was taken and that you can be sure

Puffin numbers have suffered a sharp decline

of the location. This will give us further insight into any changes that may have occurred in puffins’ diets over the years.

Join the fight

Citizen science projects such as Project Puffin’s Puffarazzi play a vital role in saving Britain’s much-loved wildlife from extinction. There are plenty of opportunities for people to get involved, either by participating in Puffarazzi, by helping with the science through practical intervention or by showing support for wildlife across Wales. If you have past puffin photos from your visits to South Stack, Skomer Island or the rightly named Puffin Island, please be sure to send them in. For more information on how you can get involved in Project Puffin’s Puffarazzi, visit www.rspb.org.uk/ourwork/conservation/project-puffin

THINK OUTSIDE THE BOX Shropshire Wildlife Trust is celebrating a new-look walkway of bird nesting boxes thanks to the support from a local company


hropshire-based wildlife specialist CJ Wildlife has worked closely with Shropshire Wildlife Trust to create a Nest Box Walkway and the trust’s visitor centre, The Cut, in Shrewsbury. A side wall in the cloisters of the historic building, which used to house a haphazard array of wildlife habitats, has undergone a facelift complete with illustrations and now displays a whole range of CJ Wildlife’s bird, insect and mammal habitats. The aim of the project is to create better awareness of the diversity of wildlife found in our gardens and how we can best care for them with habitats specific to their needs. CJ Wildlife specialises in products designed to attract and care for garden wildlife, and Shropshire Wildlife Trust has been a The Cut’s cloisters have been transformed valued retailer of the

company’s products for many years. The Trust shop stocks nest boxes for general garden birds, specialist CJ Wildlife’s display of nesting boxes migrating birds such as swifts and house martins, and even birds of prey. Also available are multipurpose insect houses, bat boxes and even a dormouse nest box. The boxes are not only a visually appealing addition to The Cut but are also an important engagement tool for the staff at Shropshire Wildlife Trust, who can help customers in choosing the correct habitat as well as caring for wildlife in general. ‘We are very grateful to CJ Wildlife for their support creating this wonderful new display of wildlife homes,’ says the Trust’s visitor services manager, Lizzie Stuart. ‘We hope it will engage and inspire visitors to install nest boxes in their own gardens.’

122 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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21/06/2019 15:19


Stunning sight for saw eyes

A former art student who discovered a talent for chainsaw sculpture has created a magnificent menagerie of woodland creatures in Wrexham


collection of giant squirrels, owls and hawks is brightening the grounds of Pendine Park Care Organisation in the leafy suburbs of Wrexham, each one carved by Paul Morris. Paul, 55, is a skilled member of Pendine’s gardening and maintenance team, and wanted to add colour to the rolling 11-acre site in Summerhill Road and give the residents something extra to enjoy. He

Paul, a father of four and a grandfather is currently working on one of his most of four, has always had an artistic streak. ambitious projects yet as he carves out ‘I did go to art college many years ago, a grizzly bear at the personal request he says, ‘although I wasn’t there long. of proprietor Mario Kreft MBE. But I think I’m still a bit arty. I like to Paul discovered his chainsaw carving sketch out my designs first. skills by accident after deciding ‘I like doing meerkats, but I’m to have a go at making an garden ‘I’ve done not sure they’d work in the setting owl for his wife’s birthday. ‘My all sorts of at Pendine Park. It’s not a long wife has collected lots of porcelain designs, from process and I can do a fair-sized owls over the years, so I decided squirrels to owl in a couple of days. Although to have a go at carving one using field mice. I really enjoy it the bear I’m doing for Mario my chainsaw,’ he says. ‘I managed and it’s very Kreft will take me perhaps four it, although it was quite a simple therapeutic’ or five days, doing a bit a time.’ design – it was just a case of tackling the job methodically. New elements ‘It must have been a half-decent job because my wife, Gaynor, loved it. Since ‘I’m delighted then I’ve gone on to perfect my technique to include a fair bit and done all sorts of designs, from the sculptures squirrels and owls to hawks and field mice. within the I really enjoy it and it’s very therapeutic.’’ gardens at Pendine Park,’ Second life for trees says Mario. ‘They Paul, who worked as a woodsman at blend in naturally National Trust’s Erddig Hall in Wrexham and also add a for many years, uses any storm-damaged new element to trees for his designs. ‘We lost one tree to a the garden design. storm and it had to be chopped down, so I ‘I’m particularly asked our head gardener Andrew Jones if he looking forward to could leave me about six foot of the stump,’ seeing the bear as says Paul. ‘I then designed an owl and used it will has a very my chainsaw to complete the sculpture. special meaning ‘The squirrel was made from of a for me. My late section of ash that was cut down when father, Franz Kreft, it became infected with a disease. I travelled the world managed to save a big piece of unaffected working as a bear tree and used that for the sculpture. and lion trainer, It’s almost as if the trees get a second and the sculpture chance to inspire even when they have will be dedicated to come to the end of their natural life.’ his memory.’

124 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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AFONWEN CRAFTS Discover who will be visiting Afonwen Craft & Antique Centre in Flintshire over the coming months 4th & 5th July, Eco Silver Jewellery with Sandra Roberts Sandra creates beautiful jewellery using recycled silver, bending, twisting, cutting and hammering it create individual bespoke pieces. Watch her work, and see her design pieces as well as the finished articles. 7th July, Colourful Self New to Afonwen, Hannah creates unique hand-painted wearable art. Her bright and colourful designs are ideal on leather and canvas, and she’ll decorate shoes, clothing and textile bags you bring to her.

Be inspired by your surroundings Shire is teaming up with the Campaign To Protect Rural England to call on Shropshire’s aspiring photographers to take part in a competition offering some top cash prizes


he Shropshire branch of the Campaign To Protect Rural England (CPRE) is launching a photo competition to mark the organisation’s 70th birthday. Entitled ‘My Shropshire’, the contest encourages budding photographers to capture the county’s beautiful and diverse landscape and demonstrate why they love Shropshire. CPRE Shropshire wants to see the best snaps from across Shropshire, Telford and Wrekin, from wide panoramic views and winding country roads to historic remains. The competition is free to enter and you can submit photos in any of three categories: Shropshire Countryside (your favourite view), Shropshire Heritage and Shropshire’s Towns & Villages. ‘CPRE Shropshire has been campaigning to protect the beauty, tranquillity and diversity of our Shropshire countryside for 70 years,’ says Sarah Bury, chair of CPRE Shropshire. ‘This

competition marks this important milestone by celebrating and documenting the beauty of our county. The contest is open to aspiring photographers and complete novices alike. Prizes include £150 cash for the overall winner, £50 for two runners-up, plus a Tour & Tasting experience at Kerry Vale Vineyard for the most highly commended photo. ‘We’re really looking forward to receiving some incredible photos that showcase Shropshire’s many varied and stunning landscapes,’ says Sarah. ‘So remember to keep your camera or smartphone handy when you’re out and about – you never know, you may just capture that winning photo!’ The closing date for entries is 6th September and the competition will be judged by CPRE Shropshire’s board, plus leading Shropshire landscape photographers John Hayward and Tina Corfield. The best entries will be displayed in around Shropshire in the autumn, and some will be printed in future issues of Shire too. ‘Remember to keep your camera or smartphone handy when you’re out and about in Shropshire!’

For full terms and conditions and to download an entry form, visit www. cpreshropshire.org.uk/ photo-competition

9th & 10th July, Femme Fatale Bags by Liz Glamorous bags and accessories ideal for the races, weddings and christenings. Liz is happy to make to order and blend or match your outfits. 11th & 12th July, Jewel Crafts by Jackie Whether you like your beaded jewellery long and chunky or short and delicate, Jackie has a design and colour for you. Jackie is also happy to repair items for you. 8th August, Crafty Sisters Linda and Sue bring their wonderful collection of braided and fused glass jewellery, handmade cards and stitchwork to Afonwen. The ladies have lots of fun while working and are happy to make personalised pieces. 10th & 11th August, local artist Gill Benjamin Gill will be working at Afonwen and always proves popular with visitors. 13th & 14th August, silk painting with Mair Morgan Mair creates beautiful bright and colourful scarves, cushions, cards and wall art with her silk art. It’s always a delight to watch her working. 15th & 16th August, pen and ink art with Huw Vaughan Jones Huw draws from local landscapes and scenery – his work is very striking and bold and depicts the sites beautifully 17th & 18th August, Earthdeva Marie, the artist behind Earthdeva, creates artworks, jewellery and decorative pieces often with a mystical and mythical theme. She creates every piece by hand, and paints them to finish. For more on upcoming events at Afonwen Craft & Antique Centre visit www.afonwen.co.uk

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 125

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ARTS & CRAFTS A R T I N YO U R A R E A Until 21st July, Futbolka, Ty Pawb, Wrexham Celebrating Wrexham’s significant footballing heritage using historical artefacts and contemporary artworks, Futbolka aims to provoke responses to topics relating to access, equality and inclusion. The exhibition features football shirts, scarves and other items taken from Wrexham Museum’s archives and private collections, which are displayed alongside paintings, clothing, films and other artworks. www.typawb.wales Until 1st September, Comics: Explore & Create Comic Art, Coalbrookdale Gallery, Telford This new free exhibition showcases an eclectic mix of original, iconic comic art alongside work by current children’s comic creators. Originated by Seven Stories, the National Centre For Children’s Books, the exhibition immerses comic book fans of all ages in the stimulating and imaginative world of children’s comics, surrounded by interactive activities, playful props and original material. www.ironbridge.org.uk Until 10th September, British Wildlife Photography Awards, Jackfield Tile Museum This stunning new free exhibition in Telford features the winners and commended entries from the 2018 British Wildlife Photography Awards on display in the museum’s Footprint Gallery. The inspirational images are a celebration of British wildlife in all its beauty and diversity from a range of hugely talented amateur and professional photographers practising across the UK. They highlight the great wealth and diversity of Britain’s natural history, providing a showcase for the very best nature photography with evocative and powerful imagery encouraging enjoyment of our natural heritage. www.ironbridge.org.uk Until Sept, Andrew Logan Museum Of Sculpture, Berriew, nr Welshpool Europe’s only museum dedicated to a living artist has opened its doors for its 28th season. ALMoS is a fantastical jewelled treasure trove housing Andrew’s sculptures and jewellery, portraiture, photos and costumes. The riverside museum houses costumes and memorabilia from Andrew’s Alternative Miss World contests, a shrine to the late Divine – one of many works inspired by Andrew’s friends and muses – and other dazzling treasures, including the four-metre tall Cosmic Egg, back from loan to the National Trust. andrewloganmuseum.org

PHOTO competition FAMILY

by Marilea Schofield

by Leila Hodgson

by Roger Fox

by Tracey Williams

by Marilea Schofield

by Michelle Boden

Thank you as always for all the brilliant entries to Shire’s photo competition. Plenty of you had lots of pictures to share on the subject of family and we’ve enjoyed looking through them – here are just some of our favourites! Don’t worry if your entry hasn’t made it into print, because you’ve got another chance in the next edition. The subject for the September/October issue is The Sky’s The Limit – and we’re looking for fantastic images of sunsets, sunrises, rainbows, cloud formations… whatever you spot when you look up! Email them with your details to editorial@shiremagazine.co.uk. Happy snapping!

Better than new!


o you want to breathe new life into an old piece of furniture? Upcycling is a great way to reinvent an old favourite. Whether you love the idea of having a go yourself or prefer to leave things to the professionals, Country Commissions’ workshops allow you to combine your inner creative flair with professional knowledge and expertise. You can have your old furniture painted by hand using specialist decorative techniques and

create exclusive designs to suit your interior décor. Charlotte from Country Commissions (pictured left) can also provide a colour consultancy in your home to discuss the colours and decorative techniques that best suits your furniture and décor. Once you’ve chosen a colour scheme or theme, she can transform your furniture in your own home or at her studio in Flintshire. For more information, call 07803 313278, email countrycommissions@gmail.com or www.furniturepaintingservices.co.uk.

126 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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£3 - adults/ £1.50 - cones/ £8 - family 01686 640 689 / almos@andrewloganmuseum.org andrewloganmuseum.org / Berriew, SY21 8PJ. Charitynumbe,519865

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Plus Easter & August Bank Holiday Sat, Sun & Mon Annual Jewellery Extravaganza every Aug Bank Hol Sunday!





Museum, shop & cafe open: June to end Sept on Saturdays & Sundays 12 noon to 4pm




28/05/2019 13:11

Afonwen North Wales


describe us in one word... ‘Fantastic’

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Homestyle Living, Gifts, Furniture, Antiques, Jewellery, Daily Craft Demonstrations and fabulous a Restaurant. Tel: Centre 01352 720965 or Restaurant 01352 720797

AFONWEN, Near Caerwys, CH7 5UB • Only 5mins off the A55 Junction31

OPEN Tuesday - Sunday • 9.30am – 5.30pm OPEN BANK HOLIDAYS MONDAYS E. antiques@afonwen.co.uk www.afonwen.co.uk

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Whether you’re off to exotic climes or sunning yourself on the Welsh coast, make sure you dress to impress


Packing light? A sundress works as a beach cover-up or eveningwear

Frida floral underwired bandeau £50, www.figleaves.co.uk

Tortoiseshell cat-eye sunglasses £6, www.dorothyperkins.com

Lemon ditsy print plisse jumpsuit £39, www.missselfridge.com

Elisa Cavaletti dress £265, www.applebyandshaw.co.uk

Striped bandeau bikini £38, www.next.co.uk Pause Cafe dress £171, www.applebyandshaw.co.uk

Yellow crochet dress £10, www.primark.com

Metallic Havaianas flip-flops £28, www.figleaves.co.uk


Geometric zigzag motif swimsuit £62, www.guess.eu


Pink ombre beach T-shirt £35, www.hush-uk.com

Look fit for St Tropez, whether you opt for stylish florals with heels or casual stripes with white trainers Below: all Joseph Ribkoff from So Chic Bangor, prices on request; www.sochicbangor.co.uk


1. 2. 3.

Natural lemon embroidered straw floppy hat, £25, Laura Ashley; www.lauraashley.com Oh Daisy Daisy summer hat, £20, Joe Browns; www.joebrowns.co.uk Sunny Days wide-brim slogan beach hat, £14, M&Co; www.mandco.com

128 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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At So Chic you can shop for timeless, elegant, wearable designer clothing and accessories for all occasions. W e make shopping an enjoyable experience in a relaxed environment, with friendly service and professional advice.









01248 372283

email: info@sochicbangor.co.uk


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154 High Street, Bangor, Gwynedd, LL57 1NU


you first and help you to feel relaxed and comfortable. Our friendly and experienced team do all they can to make your treatments fully personalised so you can achieve the smile you want. Our wide range of services cover every aspect of your oral health, from maintaining healthy teeth and gums to enhancing your smile with cosmetic treatments We offer a great selection of orthodontic options, providing teeth straightening

solutions that offer precise results whilst being discreet. Amongst our extensive list of services for dental treatment, we specialise in Cosmetic Dentistry, Dental Implants, Orthodontics and Teeth Whitening

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perfect venue

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CHRISTMAS PARTIES Chester Racecourse I Chester Town Hall

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Carden P ar k

Hen d ndle o options are e

Don’t let the weather dampen your day DID YOU KNOW? England averages 69.3mm rain in August; Wales 105.8mm


A stylish send-off


ep pr

d are


ne vital element of any wedding is making sure the bride or groom has a ‘last night of freedom’ to remember. The responsibility for organising such nights – or more likely, weekends – usually falls to the best man or head bridesmaid, but more and more people are turning to the experts for help in getting everything just right. The Event Station has perfected the art of partying. Its extensive range of hen and stag packages offer a variety of activities, ensuring your pre-wedding send-off will be one to remember. Whether you want a luxury or alternative break, are happy to stay local or are itching to go abroad, the options are numerous, and all have been well tested over the years! Boating in Barcelona, partying in Palma or lounging in Lisbon – the Estate Station team have been there and done that. All you have to worry about is the hen or stag’s costume.

Home-based fun

The Event Station is based at Carden Park Hotel near Chester, which boasts a massive list of adrenaline-filled activities perfect for any hen or stag do. Surrounded by 1,000 acres, the company hosts some of the best quad biking, off-roading and segwaying activities in the north-west. And with the beautiful Roman city of Chester on the hotel’s doorstep, the team can also escort you to some of the finest hotspots. Contact one of the Event Station’s activity specialists to discuss your options. www.theeventstation.co.uk

Fu n

e menu is on th

DID YOU KNOW? 32% of people have their stag or hen do abroad

To p


Big Tops

No matter how much we pray for good weather on our wedding day, it’s always worth taking the great British weather into account


here’s no such thing as a guaranteed sunny day in the UK. But British firms have become experts at keeping our erratic climate from getting in the way, none more so than those involved in the wedding industry. Hiring a marquee is a relatively simple process and often one that fits the bill. In many cases, your chosen venue will have their own available if the weather is looking suspect, but booking your own event tent is also a great way to get exactly what you want from your big day. Bringing your own building with you allows you to consider spots that would otherwise be ruled out, such as

your own garden or farmland. There are so many shapes and colours available, the marquee can also reflect the style and look you want for the day. Powys-based Top Cat Big Tops offers a huge range of structures of all shapes and sizes. So many colours are available, it’s worth taking a look at what’s on offer before you choose your wedding’s colour scheme as you may be inspired to embrace a new look! The company’s marquees have rocked up at festivals and important events, so they’ll bring a bit of status to your big day. You can browse the range at www. topcatbigtops.co.uk.

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Tre-Ysgawen Hall is an awardwinning four-star country house hotel and spa on Anglesey. There are four suites to choose from, and if you prefer to hold your wedding outside, Tre-Ysgawen has the first and only outdoor wedding venue on the isle. Call 01248 750750 or visit www.treysgawen-hall.co.uk

Holiday Inn Chester South is top for convenience and location, which makes it a popular choice with couples who have friends and family travelling to their big day. Facilities include a swimming pool, sauna, steam room and gym. Call 01244 688770 or visit www.hichestersouthhotel.co.uk.

Grosvenor Pulford Hotel is an award-winning venue in Chester where weddings are a speciality. With a current special offer you can book a wedding for 50 day and evening guests, civil ceremony, venue dressing and more for just £3,500.* Call 01244 572106 or visit www.grosvenorpulfordhotel.co.uk.

Plas Isaf Country Barn & Gardens in Corwen, Denbighshire, is a 17th-century listed barn with spectacular views of the Dee Valley. The barn offers a wealth of versatility for an intimate gathering of 30 or a celebratory party for 300. Call 01490 412486 or visit www.plas-isaf.co.uk.

Rossett Hall Hotel in the picturesque village of Rossett, north Wales, offers a secluded, tranquil atmosphere. The building combines the grandeur and charm of a Georgian hall with the amenities and comfort of a modern hotel. Call 01244 571000 or visit www.rossetthallhotel.co.uk.

Holt Lodge Hotel in Wrexham enjoys far-reaching views of north Wales. The sanctuary of peace and tranquillity, with picturesque gardens and beautifully appointed function suites, offers the perfect setting for weddings and family celebrations. Call 01978 661002 or visit www.holtlodge.co.uk.

The Hand Hotel in Chirk, at the edge of the Ceiriog Valley, is one of the oldest hotels in north-east Wales. The team are proud of their attention to detail, from initial planning to the day itself, ensuring your wedding is as memorable as possible. Call 01691 773472 or visit www.thehandhotelchirk.co.uk.

Carden Park near Chester is where all your dreams can come true. Take your vows surrounded by 1,000 acres of countryside, with the team on hand to tailor your wedding to your requirements and work to make sure everything runs like clockwork. Call 01829 731000 or visit www.cardenpark.co.uk.

Gregynog Hall near Newtown, Powys, is a grand location that is sure to impress your guests. This is the most romantic of locations, with cultural significance and laced with symbolism from the earliest times of the Princes of Wales. Call 01686 650224 or visit www.gregynog.org.

The Wild Pheasant Hotel & Spa in the picturesque Vale of Llangollen combines the traditional charm and comfort of its 19th-century building with the contemporary chic of the new luxury wing and spa facilities. Call 01978 860629 or visit www.wildpheasanthotel.co.uk.

Brookhouse Mill is a 17thcentury mill in Denbigh, with an atmospheric restaurant that overlooks the river and gardens. With a fine à la carte menu, it’s the ideal venue for any occasion, from an intimate dinner for two to a 70-guest wedding. Call 01745 813377.

Tyn Dwr Hall, set in woodland near Llangollen, is a tranquil country escape. With five-star accommodation for up to 66 guests, stained-glass windows and romantic waterfalls, surrounded by breathtaking scenery. Call 01978 884664 or visit www.tyndwrhall.co.uk.

Portmeirion in north Wales is a wedding venue like no other. Spend your wedding day on a private peninsula surrounded by colourful buildings, sandy beaches and winding woodland, with a choice of three locations for the ceremony. Call 01766 770000 or visit www.portmeirion.wales.

Whittington Castle near Oswestry is an impressive slice of local history, with a fascinating past dating back to 1222. The fairytale castle, ivy-clad walls, medieval moat and twin-towered gatehouse create the perfect romantic setting. Call 01691 662397 or visit www.whittingtoncastle.co.uk.

Thornton Manor in Cheshire can accommodate weddings of 20 to 1,000 guests in its Waterside Pavilion, Lakeside Marquee, Walled Garden or Manor House, which is the former home of Lord Leverhulme. Call 0151 353 1155 or visit thorntonmanor.co.uk.

Chateau Rhianfa epitomises romance with spectacular surroundings. The hotel has rightly earned a reputation as a premier wedding destination. You’re never too old to believe in fairytales, especially on your wedding day. Call 01248 880099 or visit www.chateaurhianfa.com

* Limited dates; T&Cs apply

With so many wedding venues in the area, picking the perfect place in which to tie the knot can be tricky. Here we’ve put together 16 of the best to help you make the right choice for you

132 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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HAND IT OVER Our hands say a lot about us and are often the first point of contact when meeting someone new, so make sure yours are well looked after to make a good impression


ur hands are in constant use from the minute we get up in the morning, but are often overlooked when it comes to our care and beauty regime. This makes no sense for a part of your body that is so well used, almost always exposed and still able to look and feel lovely when properly attended to. So here are some basic steps you can follow to get your paws in order.

Keep them clean


Failing that, make sure you have the right The first and most obvious benefit of using pair of gloves for the job. For hard tasks track a deep moisturising hand cream is that down some proper padded builder’s gloves, you’ll end up with softer hands. always garden with gloves on, make ‘Give your The oils in the cream replenish lost sure you use protective latex gloves hands the moisture and also form a protective when painting and keep rubber respect layer that prevents further damage. gloves handy when you’re doing the they Many hand creams contain dishes. Your hands will thank you! deserve’ natural ingredients such as herbs and essential oils Trim and treat that heal and repair skin. Finally, make sure your hands get the As hands are exposed respect they deserve. They work hard for much of the time – you, so reward them with the occasional enduring very hot and massage, which is also good for the joints very cold conditions, and muscles that are so well used. being routinely wet and Also consider indulging in a manicure dried, and often used at least once a month to keep nails and for hard work – they hard skin under control. When they deserve the have this are feeling their best, make sure they moisture replenished look it too with a pretty polish. Moisturise, moisturise, moisturise as often as possible.

It might seem obvious, but you must always keep your hands clean. Regular washing with soap and water (but not too harsh a soap, as frequency is best) is one of the most important steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others. Not only are many diseases and conditions spread by unclean hands, but products, chemicals and compounds that get into our skin through our hands can be drying and even discolouring, so regular freshening up is important.


Another great way to ensure your hands stay in tip-top condition is to protect them from too much damage in the first place. Barrier creams are available that should be used as recommended or when particularly harsh chemicals are being touched. Hiccups are common to most mammals, and even experienced by babies in the womb


You can shock someone out of hiccupping Hiccups occur when the diaphragm goes into a spasm, so as fun as it might be there’s is no real reason that giving someone a shock will do anything to cure them. While a shock could cause a sudden tension and then relaxation of muscles, which might help, it’s unlikely to affect the diaphragm. Holding your breath can stop the hiccups This has a bit more basis in truth. By holding your breath and increasing the level of carbon

Treat your hands to a manicure

dioxide in the blood, the brain concentrates more on those rising levels rather than the hiccups. So holding your breath for a long time, or breathing into a paper bag, can be an effective way to stop the spasms. Hiccupping for a long time is dangerous Hiccups aren’t dangerous themselves, even if they can become annoying when they persist. However it is possible for them to be an indication of a more serious underlying problem, so if your hiccups persist for more than 48 hours you should see your GP. Very rarely, long-term hiccups can be a sign of kidney failure, pneumonia, lung tumours, digestion problems or a heart attack.

134 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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OFF TO A GOOD START We are what we eat, so getting it right from the start is crucial, says Seóna Dunne, a lecturer in nutrition and health at the University of Chester


irst 1,000 Days is a campaign looking at a child’s life from conception until their second birthday, a critical window in which the foundations of a child’s development are laid. Breastfeeding, optimum nutrition intake and healthy habits can all support achieving the best First 1,000 Days. Breastfeeding is a way for mums, with the appropriate support, to provide their babies with tailored, optimum nutrition. The World Health Organisation and the Department of Health recommend that all babies are breastfed exclusively for the first six months, with breastfeeding continuing alongside a healthy diet of weaning for at least the first year of life. Encouraging breastfeeding relies on support from society as a whole, to DID YOU KNOW? Breastfeeding helps your body recover from pregnancy

Dental practices team up in Shrewsbury


inchester House Dental Practice is the longest-standing dental practice in Shrewsbury, originally set up by John Owen in the 1920s. Earlier this year, it was joined in partnership by the Dental Spa and Pontesbury Dental Practice, also located in the Shrewsbury area. The practice’s premises on Coton Hill have undergone Adam Joy and Calum Dunkley a full

encourage breastfeeding being adopted as a ‘normal behaviour’ in today’s society. Here are some of the ways in which we can support mums, babies and families to succeed in breastfeeding: • Offer a good chair with back support. • Offer to support mum around the home, making her meals, doing the shopping. • Give emotional and practical support – ask her how she is and what she wants. • Get involved in baby’s care, changing nappies, bathing etc. • Support mum in seeking out local breastfeeding peer support groups. • Make sure mum has enough food and drink. The first 1,000 days in a baby’s life is new for the baby but also for their parents, whether they’re first-time parents or not. It’s a time of adjustment to new roles in life. Welcome breastfeeding and become a breastfeeding advocate! refurbishment, keeping all the traditional features. ‘It’s a pleasure to be working with team members who have been at the practice for up to 30 years,’ says Susanne Ellis, operations director for the practices. ‘The Treatment room patient base has members who have been attending the practice for over 50 years.’ With the addition of an extra surgery, the practice is available to take on more new patients and hopes to keep the practice flourishing as it has in the past. Adam Joy and Calum Dunkley have also joined the team and will be adding more specialist treatments, along with minor surgery skin treatments by retired local GP Dr Simon Reid. Payment plans are available to help spread the cost of routine dentistry. To view all services available visit www. winchesterhousedental.co.uk. To discuss your needs in person, call 01743 362326.

WHAT Crystal healing is a holistic and natural therapy that taps into the energetic power of crystals and how they affect the body and mind. The treatment is a pseudoscientific alternative medicine technique that uses semi-precious stones and crystals such as quartz, amethyst or opals. During a session, you’ll be encouraged to relax and close your eyes. Then the therapist will begin placing crystals on and around your body, which will be left for a specified length of time. WHERE Although generally considered a new age approach, other cultures have developed traditions of crystal healing over time, including the Hopi Native Americans of Arizona and Hawaiian islanders, while the Chinese have traditionally attributed healing powers to microcrystalline jade.

WHO The types of crystals used and the positioning of them will depend on what the client is seeking support for, so in theory the treatment is suitable for all types of people and complaints. This could range from a physical concern such as headaches or stress to more emotional or spiritual concerns. HOW As crystals take millions of years to form underground, it is believed that they are imbued with the ability to hold energies. A crystal therapist will place healing crystals on or around a client to help unblock, focus and direct energy. Different types of crystals are thought to have different properties and energies. Just holding and being near these crystals is therefore believed to affect our own energies on a physical, spiritual and emotional level.

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 135

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multimillion pound project to turn a historic former steelworks into one of the UK’s foremost industrial and natural heritage sites is appealing for volunteers. Brymbo Heritage Trust has already begun a £5m project to restore buildings at the old Brymbo steelworks near Wrexham, which closed almost 30 years ago with the loss of 1,100 jobs. The trust’s ambitious plans are already bearing fruit – literally. An orchard is producing apples for cider, beehives are being introduced for honey, a fossil forest uncovered by open-cast mining is being preserved and ambitious plans to restore a railway around the site are in the pipeline. The project has received funding through the Welsh Government Rural Communities Rural

Brymbo Heritage Trust volunteers with volunteer coordinator Lynze Rogers (left) and Cadwyn Clwyd’s Donna Hughes (right)

V The former steelworks in Wrexham

Development Programme 2014-2020, supported by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development and the Welsh government. But more people power is needed, and rural regeneration agency Cadwyn Clwyd has now teamed up with Wrexham County Borough Council to appeal for more helpers. ‘Volunteers are the backbone of what we do here,’ says Lynze Rogers, Brymbo Heritage Trust’s volunteer coordinator. ‘We have over 120 people already supporting us but we need more – particularly those who are willing to get their hands dirty. We’d like to establish Brymbo as an industrial heritage site like Ironbridge.’ For more information email hayley.morgan@wrexham.gov. uk or call 01978 667328.

Bodnant team presents donation to Ty Gobaith

Friends of hospital make final donation



undraising for a stunning garden that will offer sanctuary for spinal cord injury patients has now come to end, with the League of Friends to the Robert Jones & Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital donating a final total of almost £3,000. Horatio’s Garden is a national charity that creates and cares for gardens in NHS spinal injury centres and the garden, based on the Midland Centre for Spinal Injuries at the Oswestrybased hospital, will be the fourth it has completed. ‘We’re absolutely delighted to present Horatio’s Garden with the final sum of funds totalling £2,734,’ says Victoria

ivienne Martin is using her own battle with cancer to help transform the way patients are treated in north Wales. The assistant principal for landbased studies and additional learning needs at Coleg Vivienne Martin Cambria has fought breast cancer twice in just seven years. felt I wasn’t receiving enough She returned to work in information and it meant I had January and is back to full to call around to find out what fitness, but her determination was going on,’ she said. ‘The and drive saw her chosen by hospitals do amazing work Betsi Cadwaladr University and saved my life twice, so I Health Board to want to help them further become a spokesperson improve for people who go ‘For me, for its new partnership through it in the future.’ the glass with Macmillan Vivienne has also been is always Cancer Support – asked to oversee the Coleg half full’ Transforming Cancer Cambria’s new-look Services Together charity and volunteering – which will initially focus appeal, Calon – Charity in on breast, lung, colorectal Action. ‘I have always enjoyed and urological cancers. helping charities, and given The campaign aims to my own battle with cancer it redesign current processes and has given me a renewed focus provide better care and support and drive,’ she says. ‘For me for patients. Vivienne, 56, from the glass is always half full – I Abergele, attended the launch love my job and the support in St Asaph and spoke of the I’ve had from my colleagues, need for better communication the college and students and coordination of care. ‘I has been overwhelming.’

From left to right: Mr Aheed Osman, Peter David, Dr Olivia Chapple, Becky Warren, Lady Trevor, Victoria Sugden, Heather Thomas-Bache

Sugden, charity director for the League of Friends. ‘Overall, we raised £262,734, more than double our initial commitment of £125,000.” ‘The garden, once finished, will make a remarkable difference to the experience patients have when on MCSI,’ adds Lady Trevor, who is vice chair of the League of Friends.

or the eighth Christmas running, Bodnant Garden Centre in Tal y Cafn, Conwy, was transformed into a magical grotto to raise funds for Ty Gobaith Children’s Hospice, which have now been presented. ‘Almost 600 children visited our Winter Wonderland to spend time with Santa and his elves,’ says Angela Vaughan Thomas. ‘A grand total of £685.26 was raised for a very worthwhile charity that is very close to our hearts.’ Ty Gobaith is a ‘home from home’ with stunning views across the Conwy estuary; a site chosen for the peace and tranquillity it affords the children and families who visit.

A grotto helped to raise funds

The hospice opened in 2004 and provides care and support to children and their families living in north Wales, many of whom speak Welsh as a first language. ‘I’d sincerely like to thank the team at Bodnant Garden Centre for all their support in raising many thousands of pounds for our cause,’ says Beverley Bradley of Ty Gobaith. ‘Fundraising is vital so that we can provide the care and support that our children, young people and families so desperately need.’

If you would like to see your charity event featured on these pages, please email the details to the Shire team at editorial@shiremagazine.co.uk 136 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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RJAH News Veteran patients among the first to trial patient companion app


eteran patients at RJAH will be among the first NHS patients to benefit from an app that aims to help them feel more informed about their pre- and post-op care and treatment. The hospital will be the first NHS trust to use myrecovery, an app designed for orthopaedic patients that contains information created and approved by the patient’s surgical team so they can get the best out of their treatment and recovery. The hospital is trialling the app through its veterans’ orthopaedic service, with plans to roll it out across the trust in the future. Consultant orthopaedic surgeon Lieutenant Colonel Carl Meyer, who fronts the veterans’ orthopaedic service, says being part of the trial is ‘an extremely exciting opportunity’. ‘I’m absolutely delighted to be working with the myrecovery team,’ he says. ‘The app will make a huge difference to our

patients’ experiences. The fact that the content on the app has been created and approved by us will help patients feel reassured that the information they’re getting is reliable.” As well as improving overall patient experience, the creators of myrecovery claim there are a number of other benefits to the app, including reducing hospital staff workload, as the app aims to keep patient calls and emails to a minimum.The company also says the app will also improve the way hospitals report data.

Lieutenant Colonel Carl Meyer, third from left, with the myrecovery and RJAH teams



team of staff and patients from the Midland Centre For Spinal Injuries (MCSI) at RJAH recently competed at the Inter Spinal Unit Games. The games, organised by national charity for wheelchair sport WheelPower, allow adult patients who have sustained a spinal cord injury in the past 12 months to compete and try a variety of sporting activities. Physiotherapist Amy Wyatt, occupational therapist Joely Heighway, generic worker Jeanette Jones and staff nurse Hayley Thurston from

Team MCSI at the Inter Spinal Unit Games at Stoke Mandeville

RJAH took five patients to Stoke Mandeville Stadium to compete in the games. ‘The games are really beneficial to newly paralysed patients.’ says Amy. ‘It supports their physical rehabilitation by improving their wheelchair skills, health and fitness, and also allows participants to build their confidence and socialise with others who have also experienced similar life changing injuries.’ The team representing RJAH and MCSI included Dan Moseley, Tracy Vallance, Charlie Cash, Adam Clarke and Andy Hough, who took away three medals between them. ‘I had a fab week at the games,’ says Tracy. ‘It was a brilliant time and I’d like to say thank you to the staff at MCSI and my fellow patients for making it such an unforgettable experience.’

The latest news from the Robert Jones & Agnes Hunt Orthopaedic Hospital (RJAH) in Oswestry, Shropshire



he orthotics team at RJAH are working with Keele University and Opcare to create a pioneering degree in prosthetics and orthotics. RJAH orthotist Helena Marshall is working on the project in collaboration with colleagues from the School of Health & Rehabilitation at Keele and Opcare, a supplier of prosthetic, orthotic and wheelchair services to the NHS. It’s hoped the first intake of students will start in the 2021/22 academic year. The bespoke project aims to address the national shortage of orthotists across the UK. ‘There are currently around 400 orthotists in the UK,’ says Helena, ‘and the British Healthcare Trades Association predict there needs to be a workforce increase

Helena Marshall with principal orthotist Jane Dewsbury

of approximately 50 per cent to meet the current and future demand. This course is an exciting opportunity for RJAH to be involved in.’ The unique project has involved consultation with the British Association Of Prosthetists & Orthotists and the International Society For Prosthetics & Orthotics. ‘We are delighted to be working in partnership with Keele University to lead Orthotics into a new era,’ says principal orthotist Jane Dewsbury. ‘Being an orthotist is a rewarding career that involves a unique mix of patient contact, engineering and creativity.’

Visit to India


consultant orthopaedic surgeon at RJAH has spent just over two weeks touring India as part of the prestigious Copeland Fellowship. Mr Cormac Kelly was awarded one of three surgeon Mr Cormac Kelly, second left places on the fellowship, run by the British Elbow & saw amazing surgery on polio Shoulder Society (BESS). victims that enables them to The Copeland Fellowship walk after years of disability. is described as an aspirational ‘We cemented new international fellowship for international relationships members of BESS who have an between the shoulder and elbow established or emerging national surgical communities in India and international and the UK, which reputation. we hope will lead to ‘The ‘The fellowship further collaborative fellowship involved lecturing projects and meetings.’ was a at international Each fellow fantastic conferences in Delhi, was required to experience’ Pune and Chennai, as prepare around 15 well as visiting hospitals presentations, as well and local landmarks,’ says as being involved in discussion Mr Kelly, who specialises in groups and expert panels. shoulder surgery. ‘We also spent ‘The schedule was intense time at St Stephen’s Hospital with lectures and presentations, in Delhi at the invitation of but overall the fellowship was a Dr Mathew Varghese, an fantastic experience of amazing internationally acclaimed India and its people,’ says Mr orthopaedic surgeon, where we Kelly. ‘I am still on a high.’ July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 139

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140 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Come & visit us Our visitors love to see the alpacas on the fields while they browse in our shop for: • Alpaca socks • Luxurious Alpaca Duvets and pillows • Exclusive knitted and felted alpaca items traceable to our alpacas • Exclusive Alpaca Yarn produced from our herd.

Welcome to The Penrhos Arms Hotel near Machynlleth, Mid Wales

Our Farm Shop is open every Saturday from 10.00 until 4.00 or by appointment at other times - just call us. Groups of up to 16 are welcome - please contact us for details.

Arrive as a guest and depart as a friend...

We also sell good quality alpacas as: Pets, Guard animals and Starter herds Please contact us for details Mulberry Grange, Red Hall Lane, Higher Penley, Wrexham, LL13 ONA Tel: 07713 639 447 Email: mulberryalpacas@btconnect.com We’re 4 miles north of Ellesmere

Our Farm Shop is open every Saturday from 10am until 4pm

A traditional Welsh welcome awaits you at the Penrhos Arms Hotel in the heart of Machynlleth. Enjoy a relaxing short break or overnight stay in one of our rooms, which are all furnished to a high standard and with en suite facilities. Dine in our homely restaurant and choose from a comprehensive menu that changes on a daily basis, with local produce, meat, game and fish.

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Retirement Living Dementia patients treated to greatest show Marjorie, Doreen, Estelle and Joan sing along


n a collaboration with Theatr Colwyn, the Welsh National Opera (WNO) team are leading cinema audiences in singalongs before the cinema’s dementiafriendly movie screenings begins. And at a recent showing of The Greatest Showman, they were joined by youngsters from St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School in Colwyn Bay, who delivered stunning renditions of the movie’s biggest numbers. ‘It was fantastic – I had the best time ever,’ said lifelong film and music fan Lorraine Williams following the screening in the

The Welsh National Opera’s Morgana Warren-Jones, pianist Annette Bryn Parri and Sioned Foulkes lead the singing

Singers from the Welsh National Opera joined forces with local schoolchildren to offer an extra special entertainment experience to dementia patients in north Wales historic art deco surroundings of Colwyn Bay’s Theatr Colwyn.

Memorable event

The shows are much more informal than usual, with the house lights left on and singing and dancing in the aisles encouraged. It’s all part of the UKwide A Life More Ordinary project on dementia and memory loss. The aim is to give people living with dementia who might find it difficult to sit still quietly during a normal film screening the opportunity to enjoy cultural events. WNO youth and community projects leader, Morgana Warren ‘The Jones, herself an accomplished screenings opera singer, is thrilled with trigger so how well the events are going. many good ‘They are joyful memories’ afternoons,’ she says. ‘There is such a buoyant vibe in the auditorium and all the audience visibly delights in joining in, whether they are living with dementia

Carers Katy and Olivia with Brian and Lorraine sing and dance to the music on screen

themselves, carers or just people who have seen that there is a film screening on and decided to come in and watch.’ Lorraine, who was accompanied to the cinema by her carers Katy and Olivia from Marine Court, Colwyn Bay, said it felt like a red-carpet premiere. ‘Lorraine had such a great time,’ says Katy. ‘Coming to these interactive dementia-friendly screenings triggers so many good memories and emotions for her.’ For more information about Theatr Colwyn’s dementia-friendly film screenings, visit www.theatrcolwyn.co.uk

OLDER PEOPLE WENT WILD IN JUNE This year the Wildlife Trust’s annual challenge to get out and enjoy nature had a special remit to include residents of care homes


very year, the Wildlife Trust calls on people across the country to ‘go wild’ every day in June, and this year more than 1,000 people in north Wales were among the 60,000 countrywide who received their ideas pack and took part in the charity’s daily Random Acts of Wildness: listening to birdsong, gazing at butterflies and making the most of our parks and gardens. With clear evidence that taking part can make us happier and healthier, it was an obvious choice to roll out the programme to encourage care home residents to make the most of the opportunity too. The Trust’s 30 Days Wild challenge encouraged care homes to share the joy of nature with their residents, and more than 350 care homes signed up to take part.

Perfect participants

The idea was trialled across a group of residential homes in 2018 and participants saw some remarkable

benefits, with residents experiencing less anxiety and fewer falls. ‘Each home takes something from the challenge,’ says Wildlife Trust volunteer Louise Baker. ‘One home will enjoy the birdsong heard in its suburban garden, while another will record wildlife that thrives in its wildflower meadow and orchard.’

Healthy benefits

‘Being outside in nature makes us all well,’ says Ellie Harrison, presenter of Countryfile and president of the Gloucestershire Wildlife Trust. ‘The smallest moments connecting - the surprise of a beetle revealing its wings, the fleeting secrets of bats at dusk – all bring us wonder Gardening for health and enchantment.’

There are many delights to witness

Channel 5 doctor Dr Amir agrees. ‘Spending time outdoors, enjoying wildlife on our doorstep and in our communities is free and can benefit our mental and physical health in so many ways,’ he says. The impact of the project is being seen in the care homes that took part in 2018 and it’s hoped that next year even more care home communities sign up. ‘Thirty Days Wild is all about taking a moment to stop and notice the living world,’ says Chris Baker from North Wales Wildlife Trust. ‘From the plants under our feet to the birds that circle over our heads, it’s a celebration of the variety of life that exists in our world and how regular contact with it can have such a positive impact on our own health and wellbeing.’

142 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Oswestry14/06/2018 life | 14:101 23/06/2019 19:23



We have over 150 quality wood, gas and electric stoves and fireplaces in our showroom from the best brands in the business. Exceptionally clean burning, great value and EcoDesign 2022 compliant.

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Meet the expert

Lecturer Sara Hilton answers our questions about Wrexham Glyndwr University’s football and coaching science programme

sports psychology, coaching pedagogy – literally, how to teach and instruct people as a coach – and more. As well as the theoretical parts of the degree, you also get an FAW C certificate in your first year, and work towards the UEFA B one in your second and third year – this forms part of your degree studies.

QWhat subject do you specialise in?

QWhat practical work do students get involved with?


My specialism is within football coaching, coach education and coach mentoring – both as an academic and elsewhere! Outside the university, I work with the Football Association of Wales (FAW), delivering courses to coaches. Under FAW rules, there are certain qualifications you need to be a football coach. Depending on what level you coach at, you’ll need either a level 1 football leaders’ award or a level 3 UEFA B licence. I also deliver those courses within our football coaching and the performance specialist degree at Wrexham Glyndwr University.

QHow did you get into this career?



From a football perspective, you have lots of opportunities to get involved and to build your portfolio – and to have some really good experiences at the same time! As a course – and a university – we help grassroots football a lot. We have students who are helping to provide coaching to grassroots football teams across the region and helping to bring on the next generation of players. We work closely with the FAW and its analysis team too. We have students who work as analysts with them on the north Wales regional squads. We also have had students working on international matches, such as the recent friendly between Trinidad & Tobago and Wales that was held at the ‘We know what Racecourse Ground here in Wrexham – getting behind we’re doing the scenes at a big match like that is a great experience!

Before becoming a lecturer at Glyndwr I – both in the worked as a coach educator at the FAW classroom and for seven years. I initially came through the on the pitch!’ What career opportunities it can lead to? player pathway – starting as a footballer myself. I played for lots of clubs in my teens, including From the degree course we’ve obviously had students Manchester United Girls, Caernarfon Ladies and go on to become coaches in various environments, Tranmere Rovers, and then went out to the US to work. but the options are much wider than that! Students have become Unfortunately, while out there I picked up an injury. But performance analysts and worked in talent ID – spotting potential by that time I’d built up a lot of contacts at the FAW and professionals of the future and coach development for a range within the Welsh national team, so I asked them what I of clubs, among many other things. We’ve also found that some should do next. I was advised to go into coaching, so in 2011 students want to take the research they do on our course further, so I did my football leaders award qualification, and then they we have been working to develop a new research master’s degree, asked me if I would become a coach educator myself. That an MRes in sport, health, exercise and coaching science, where they led to Glyndwr and to the specialised degree we run here. can dedicate themselves to in-depth research on a particular area.



QWhat’s required to get on the course?


Any prior experience in football is obviously a great help; while you don’t have to have it, it can prove really useful. What’s really important is that you have a passion for the game! We welcome people with a variety of qualifications and from a range of backgrounds – if you’re keen on the game, and passionate and interested in finding out more about developing your career in football, get in touch!

QWhat does the course entail?


The degree looks at a range of skills and specialisms that can be developed within the football environment: physiology,

QWhy should people choose Wrexham Glyndwr University?


They should choose us because they know they will not only get a degree, but also professional qualifications as well with the coaching certificates and licences. By studying here they will get to enjoy a range of great experiences, such as going behind the scenes at major international matches, and they’ll make a difference to football on the ground across the region. We’re also setting up a series of new internships this year, so there will be even more chances to get involved! Finally, all our staff understand their subject inside out – they have been there, worked as professionals and know what they are doing, both in the classroom and out on the pitch!

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A co-educational country prep school taking children from 3 months - 13 years in a beautiful setting, combining outstanding academic and extra-curricular success, with a culture of kindness founded on Catholic principles.

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Top of the Class Cathedral honour for college choir

Simon Parker of Coleg Cambria (left) with Michael Bywater at Kubota

Partnership with agricultural giants


bbey Gate College Chapel Choir was honoured to perform Evensong under the world-famous dome of St Paul’s Cathedral earlier this year. For the 30th consecutive year, the 45 members of the choir performed in one of the world’s most beautiful buildings to a congregation of more than 800 people. Conducted by head of music, Mr Andrews, the choir performed pieces

Abbey Gate College Chapel Choir

including Canticles in D Major by George Dyson and Balfour Gardiner’s Evening Hymn. ‘The choir were professional in both their singing and conduct, and the standard was incredibly high,’ says Mr Andrews. ‘The pupils were unfazed by the vast space and eight-second echo within the centuries-old building. It’s testament to their ability that they could cope so admirably with the challenges.’


17-year-old classically trained soprano has landed a music scholarship at a prestigious Shropshire college. Sixth-form student Rhian Jones was presented with the Walker Music Scholarship at Ellesmere College after a private performance of three songs in the college’s chapel. The scholarship was created by Tom and Margaret Walker as a thank you for the education of their two children, Rachael and Edward. ‘I would like to thank Mr and Mrs Walker for this kind award,’ says Rhian, from Mold. ‘I am thoroughly enjoying my time at Ellesmere and am incredibly grateful for the opportunity that I have been granted.’ The scholarship will run for two years, supporting Rhian through the sixth form and providing her with financial support and

Rhian with Tom and Margaret Walker

mentoring connections to the global network of 7,000 Old Ellesmerians around the world. Tom and Margaret’s daughter, Rachael, was awarded a music scholarship when she attended Ellesmere College from 1988 to 1990. The couple decided to create the scholarship to help other talented young musicians after being impressed by her progress and obvious enjoyment of the whole music environment at Ellesmere.

up with one of the giants of oleg Cambria Llysfasi joined forces with a top agricultural and construction equipment manufacturing will international agricultural machinery company to give their learners a head-start on entering a career in the sector. train future workers in ‘We’re very proud to be land-based engineering. The college working with Kubota, ‘We’re offering a fantastic training has signed up to proud a new partnership programme for their to be dealership technicians with Kubota, the working throughout the UK and Japanese tractor and with Ireland,’ says Simon. ‘The heavy equipment Kubota’ programme will allow the manufacturer. Together trainees to enjoy full-time they have launched employment with their local the Kubota Apprenticeship Kubota dealership, as well Scheme, a three-year block as formal specialist training release programme that during their time in college.’ will blend education at the ‘This partnership will enable innovative Denbighshire facility us to train the next generation with on-the-job experience. of dealership technicians Simon Parker, an agricultural to the highest levels,’ adds engineering lecturer at Llysfasi, Michael Bywater of Kubota. near Ruthin, says teaming

Pupils meet creepy crawlies


hildren from the Firs Prep School in Chester had a wonderful morning recently with a special visit from The Creepy Crawly Show, who brought with them all sorts of exotic animals. The animals were introduced to the children through a story called Oliver’s Adventures. As each character appeared, the children got to meet, touch and even hold the wonderful creatures. They met a gecko, a corn snake, a Madagascan hissing cockroach and a tarantula, to name just a few. ‘The children had a wonderful time and loved meeting and touching the animals,’ says Lucy Davies, head

teacher at the Firs School. ‘Only Mrs Ankers was allowed to hold the tarantula though! ‘The children found out where the animals lived, what they ate, who their predators were and how they lived in the wild. The visit fitted perfectly with the theme of mini beasts, which the whole Early Years department are currently exploring. It was a fun morning!’

The children met snakes and spiders

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 149

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Dramatic explosions were part of the show


wo hundred schoolchildren aged between seven and 11, from seven primary schools in the Wrexham and Chester areas, were treated to an hour-long show by one of the stars of BBC One’s The One Show, Marty Jopson, as part of Wrexham’s Carnival Of Words festival at Techniquest Glyndwr. During their visit, the children spent an hour or two exploring the five zones of the centre with its 65 interactive science exhibits together with its outdoor Science Garden, before gathering together in the Catrin Finch Centre on the Wrexham Glyndwr University Campus to be part of the show.

As well as wowing the young audience with his engaging science experiments, Marty was in Wrexham to promote his recently published book, The Science Of Food. The One Show’s resident scientist took the children on a tour of food-related science, which entertainingly included several dramatic explosions. Exploring the science behind a typical meal containing a burger, salad and cake, Marty introduced all sorts of fascinating facts about how food is produced and explained how its production produces powerful greenhouse gases such as methane.



oreton Hall senior school student Zoe Tse placed second in the prestigious Shropshire Young Thinkers’ Competition after reading her letter to Charles Darwin for the judging panel. The Grand Final took place at the University Centre, Shrewsbury, where 500 students were tasked with writing letters to Darwin, inviting him on an imaginary journey to a location of their choice. Zoe’s letter took the reader on a journey that nobody would expect Darwin to be involved in: into space! ‘What intrigues me about space and what inspired me was that whenever I just lie on the grass and stare at the sky I remember that the stars that we see now have probably exploded and the light has only just reached

our eyes years later, and then I realise how big must space be?’ Zoe, 15, commented. ‘Zoe should be congratulated on achieving second place in the grand final,’ says Moreton Hall’s head of humanities, Simon Jones. ‘To gain second place out of nearly 500 entries is an exceptional achievement.’

Zoe Tse


Jenna Brook in action



swestry School swept to success at this year’s Oswestry Music Festival. Year 8 pupil Myles Wilkinson was one of the outstanding pupils in the competition, coming away as the overall winner of the 12 and under category and being named Young Performer of the Year. Myles has now been invited to perform as a guest artist at a concert given by the Scholars & Gentlemen, when he’ll join the older choir members for the demanding role of high treble in Allegri’s Miserere,


Myles Wilkinson

voted one of classical music’s most popular pieces ever. During the 12-minute performance of the 1638 composition, Myles will have to hit top C no fewer than five times. The piece was thought to be so special that the Vatican kept the music to itself for 150 years.

Jenna has more than a ou never know what decade of experience as a you’ll see while exploring Wrexham Glyndwr University, street performer, dancer, clown and a community drama as passersby discovered when practitioner – and continues they saw a fire-eating display to perform over the summer. on the Plas Coch campus. Theatre, television Being a part of the and performance ‘Jenna put performing arts scene while lecturer Jenna Brook on an eye- lecturing allows Jenna to give valuable knowledge put on the eyecatching and advice to her students. catching show for show’ ‘The students like to know students to film as part of their level that I’ve just come from 4 television assessment. She doing something,’ she says. ‘When they arrive in the first also told of her experiences in performing and teaching week of October they know I may have literally just that in an interview with creative weekend come out of a field media lecturer Graeme Park at the university’s TV studio. or a performance situation.’

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ormer A-level students from Shrewsbury Colleges Group are more likely to gain top first and upper second class degrees than their nationwide counterparts, according to the latest statistics. Recent figures released by the Higher Education Statistics Agency revealed that 87 per cent of all SCG students who graduated from university in 2017/2018 gained either a topranking first or upper second degree. The national ‘SCG average from all other sixth forms was 80 per cent. puts the Not only that, but SCG students from families building where they were the first generation to attend blocks in university outstripped their counterparts’ success place’ rate by miles. SCG students in this category were 89 per cent likely to get the best two degree classifications, compared with just 76 per cent from the state sector. James Staniforth, principal of Shrewsbury Colleges Group, was delighted with the results. ‘This is what Shrewsbury Colleges Group


is all about: putting students on the right road to their futures,’ he says. ‘We often think that a college’s Students from Shrewsbury Colleges Group work is done once A-level and other qualifications have been achieved. But here at SCG, we put the building blocks in place for future development and success. ‘In everything we do, we arm our students with the best possible skills to take them to the next stage of their careers.’


Max Todd

S The Mini Police were given their own uniforms


orth Wales Police has 10 new pint-sized recruits, thanks to the Mini Police project which aims is to nurture better relationships between officers and the communities they serve. The young team of crime-fighters, aged between nine and 11, are pupils of Alexandra CP School in Wrexham. They were sworn in at a special ceremony at the new divisional police headquarters in Llay in the presence of the high sheriff of Clwyd, Stephanie Catherall, North Wales Police and Crime Commissioner Arfon Jones and North Wales Police assistant chief constable Sacha Hatchett. The budding officers were given shiny new uniforms and their very own warrant cards. The project is being partfunded with a £300 grant from the high sheriffs’ charity,

Crimebeat, which helps young people develop projects which make their communities a safer place to live. During the seven-week programme the youngsters will choose the policing priorities that are of concern to them, such as speeding around their school, traffic, littering and parking. High sheriff Stephanie Catherall addressed the new recruits and a room packed with proud parents and grandparents, telling them that the Mini Police project is a fun and interactive volunteering opportunity. ‘It’s marvellous to see all you young people taking such an interest in becoming local mini police officers, volunteering and getting involved in your communities,’ she said. ‘I’m sure you will learn a great deal from this and have lots of fun too.’

Despite this being Felix’s first tudent and master came time competing in an all-adult head to head in competition foiling event, he showed his at a recent high-profile sailing event. Felix Corson, a year 10 class to achieve a creditable 19th placed finish overall, pupil from Rydal which is even more Penrhos school in ‘It was a Colwyn Bay, took impressive as an overhaul really good his place in the problem forced him to regatta, field at the Zhik retire from the third race with fun of the competition. WASZP UK National on and off ‘It was a really good Championships, held the water’ regatta, with fun on and at Rutland Sailing Club over a threeoff the water,’ he says day period in May. Max, meanwhile, quickly established himself as The middle school pupil was joined in the field by Max Todd, one of the leading contenders for the title, finding himself who is a seasoned international in second place until a broken competitor and also head coach of Rydal Penrhos’s sail meant he eventually came thriving sailing provision. in fifth position overall.

Felix Corson 152 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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diwrnodau agored. israddedig

17 Awst 7 Medi

open days. undergraduate

17 August 7 September

Archebwch nawr / Book now

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Shire Magazine Customers say…








WIN Show tickets, annual passes and a night of indulgent luxury…Turn luxury…Turn to page 144 WE VISIT

We thought we’d share with you some of the feedback we’ve been getting from the businesses we work with across the region… “We have been working with Shire magazine for some while and have found that the breadth of coverage that we obtain and the length of exposure we have achieved, is considered to be very helpful in reinforcing our message to our loyal customers, who are reminded that we have been serving our community for over 43 years with quality products and services.” Barbara Wheatley, Snowdonia Windows

“We are happy to advertise with Shire magazine especially as it covers Shropshire where we have been manufacturing our stoves for over 30 years. Working with the staff at Shire is always a pleasure, they are professional, friendly and very helpful.” Ron Hoe, Marketing Manager, Clearview Stoves

For sunsets, sailing and seaside living


The market town at the gateway to Wales GRIN & BARE IT

We talk to the stars of the Calendar Girls stage show HEALTH & BEAUTY | DBTS03_Cover_septoct2018.indd 1







ART 24/08/2018 19:01

“We had a good experience promoting Newtown Food Festival with Shire Magazine. It’s a nice looking, quality publication, with a wide distribution. They were friendly and professional to deal with and also excellent value for money, giving coverage in several places in the magazine over two months. Happy customer!” Sorelle White, Newtown Council Support & Project Officer

“When I came across the Shire magazine I knew immediately that this was THE place to be seen. We are a somewhat unusual specialist country store dedicated to poultry, livestock and animal housing. As such we were looking for a magazine that not only covered a wide area but moreover was informative and full of interesting articles on subjects that would appeal to people of all ages and lifestyle.” Ann Wynne, owner, Wynnes Countrystore

“We approached Shire asking for help with publicity for the Llangollen Round Challenge, a three-yearly sponsored hill-hike raising funds for Cancer Research UK. Shire was immediately interested and more than helpful, giving us far more extensive coverage than we had initially requested. We certainly had participants who had heard about the event through Shire, and I have no doubt that it helped us in raising a record total of £66,000 for an important cause. Thank you, Shire!” Judy Smith, Llangollen Round Challenge

“We recently created a new street market at Oswestry which has gone from strength to strength with the help of the Shire Magazine, which in turn has helped promote all our fantastic markets to a much wider audience.”

David Clough, Retail Markets and Events Manager, Oswestry Town Council “Shire magazine hits the perfect mark for us in terms of readership profile and geography. Through a regular programme of promotions and editorial content, we are increasing our exposure and extending our audience reach. We are celebrating 50 years of making music in North East Wales and the Borderlands, and are the regions most accomplished, full complement community orchestra. Our collaboration with Shire magazine is increasing awareness about us, our music and our considerable charitable work.”

Derek Jones, Marketing and Communications, Wrexham Symphony Orchestra

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“I have found working with the team at Shire very straightforward. They send reminders of advertising deadlines in good time and makes the whole process very easy. On a personal level I always enjoy flicking through the magazine which inspires me to explore our locality and beyond.”

Sarah Stanbridge, Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway “Working with Shire Magazine on a series of adverts throughout the year, allowed us to target readers across the region about our up-and-coming events and new menu releases. The team also visited the restaurant to provide a fantastic review of their dining experience with us, which worked well to give readers a more personal insight into what we offer and how all our dishes are freshly prepared and cooked to order.” Ceri Whiteley, The White House

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nce again, the Shire offices have been receiving letters by the sackful. We’ve tried to print as many as possible, but please do keep them coming – we love to hear from you, whether it’s just to let us know what you think of the magazine or, as many of you do, to point out a mistake we’ve made! We always appreciate a picture to go with your letter if it’s relevant, so please post them or email us at editorial@shiremagazine.co.uk. If you have missed an issue or want an extra copy please send an SAE for £1.60

and specify which magazine you need and we will pop it in the post. To make sure you never miss a copy, why not subscribe? See page 144 for details on how to do this. A great way to keep in touch is via www.shiremagazine.co.uk, Facebook and Instagram. Find us online and be the first in line for weekly events updates, great pictures, competitions and more… So keep writing, emailing, tweeting and following us until the next time! Write to us at: Shire Magazine, PO Box 276, Oswestry, Shropshire SY10 1FR

Having read your review of Docket No33 restaurant in Whitchurch, my husband and I decided to venture out and try your recommendation. And we could not have been more surprised or delighted! We went out on a cold Saturday night to celebrate our 34th wedding anniversary and, after a little exploration of Whitchurch itself, found the restaurant. As we entered, the owner Francis Collins immediately came to greet us, welcoming us to the establishment and without prompting congratulated us on our anniversary. The food, cooked by her extremely able husband, kept coming and was, quite frankly, superb. The freshness and lightness of some of the dishes, all of which were skilfully linked with various wines, made for a very memorable meal indeed. Even the coffee at the end of dinner was served in an unusual way but resulted in a delightful brew. We cannot recommend this place highly enough. Dare I say, it’s possibly one of the best places to eat in the county? Maggie

READER F E E D B AC K We really enjoy your magazine and it’s a great way to find out about local events. Leila Hodgson, Oswestry

Dockett No33, Whitchurch

Dates in the diary

What a lot of chocolate!

This is the first time that we’ve seen your magazine, and it is excellent! We do have one criticism, though. We have been looking for a few days’ break anywhere in the Shire area, so the magazine has been helpful in finding somewhere where there is something on. But it has taken hours to sift through all the pages, which could have been made much easier had you provided a one-line listing of all the dates in date order, giving a page number. Would that not be possible? Margaret & Roger Dickinson, Deganwy

I just wanted to let you know how much we enjoyed the trip to Cadbury World that we won in a recent issue of Shire. In our eagerness, we arrived at Cadbury World earlier than our allotted time, yet the staff were very friendly and helpful. The whole chocolatey Chocolate prize experience was wonderful, with everything coloured purple. It was fascinating learning about the origins of the cocoa bean and its journey to Europe, and the beginnings and the history to date of the Cadbury company. The Cadabra ride and the green screen sections were great fun, and watching the chocolatiers decorating plain blocks of chocolate and chocolate eggs so quickly was brilliant. The 4D Chocolate Adventure was really good and afterwards we enjoyed a nice walk around Bourneville village. And, of course, we came home with lots of chocolate from the Cadbury Shop! We feel very fortunate to have won your magazine’s competition. Thank you so much. Sue Hughes

We’re glad you like the magazine – and thank you for the feedback. We’ve thought long and hard about the best way to present the hundreds of events we feature in every issue. The problem we have is that many people prefer to search by area rather than date, and venues often have more than one event going on at the same time or events that run on more than one date. We’re not sure there is an ideal way to list them all, but we hope we’ve come up with a system that works most of the time. Reading the whole section may take longer, but you may find something you would otherwise have missed!

Tragedy of the Buttington oak I recently completed a trek along Offa’s Dyke as part of an project to walk a complete circumnavigation of Wales. I spent criss-crossed the border before finding myself in the small village of Buttington. I made my way over the River Severn on The wounded oak the A458 road bridge and followed the way-marked route along the west bank of the river, and in doing so missed a chance to see one of the oldest oak trees in Wales – an opportunity that sadly is no longer available. It is claimed that the Buttington oak was planted in 893 to commemorate a battle on that spot at which an alliance of Saxons and Welsh defeated an army Vikings. But shortly after I had passed by Buttington, the mighty oak succumbed to greater forces of nature than it had it endured over the preceding millennium. Following strong winds in 2017 it split and half of it crashed to the ground. It lay like a wounded beast for a year before it completely fell and died – and the Buttington oak was no more. Dave Eldergill

I loved the recent feature on crafts and hobbies in Shire – it was great to find something that appealed to me as so many magazines seems to concentrate on glamorous lives and enormous houses rather than things that everyday people might like to do! Well done. Jenny Franklin, Cheshire Having only recently discovered Shire, I’m now an absolute regular and look out for it as soon as each issue appears! Keep up the excellent work all. Anon I left my last edition of Shire on the coffee table and was amazed to see that my daughter picked it up and read it cover to cover when she visited. Not only that, but then her son then flicked through it and enjoyed looking for things to do in the school holidays. It really did appeal to all three generations in our family, which is quite a challenge when there are 67 years between eldest and youngest! Dorothy Baxter, Ellesmere

Late date for gig

The Hawkers are playing at The Dragon Hotel, Montgomery at 9pm on 5th July. We do acoustic covers of some of our favourite artists including Gillian Welch & Dave Rawlings, Janice Joplin, Be Good Tanyas and more. Linda Rowe July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 155

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N u m b e r

O n e

f o r

C h a r n w o o d

S t o v e s

Suppliers of:

0800 169 8187



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Gledrid, Oswestry, LL14 5DG Opposite Moreton Park Garden Centre 30 mins from Shrewsbury & Chester See our 6000ft Showroom Open 7 Days a Week

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Books&Poetry Big move into writing for Shrewsbury gent New author Moses Morris has drawn inspiration from his life in Shropshire for his first novel


his edition of Shire’s new release is the first for new author Moses Morris, and tells a story that is wholly fictional and yet draws on the writer’s own life experiences. The Life Changing Big House is a coming-of-age story that follows Philip Fletcher, a 12-year-old illegitimate boy whose life is changed forever by a chance encounter in the woods. It is a delightful tale about found family, solving mysteries and finding your true worth.

If you go down to the woods…

The book starts on the first day of the summer holidays – a welcome break for Philip from the constant bullying he receives at school – as the schoolboy enters Kirkham Wood. He revels in this freedom, before running into the last people he wants to see – bully Rick Henderson and his gang. He is rescued from his tormentors by a fierce-looking dog and meets the dog’s owner – Lord Kirkham. As he befriends Lord and Lady Kirkham, Philip learns that they are in danger of losing their home, Kirkham Hall. Their only hope of saving the ‘big house’

is to find the Kirkham family fortune, which was hidden somewhere inside Kirkham Hall by a mischievous cousin. As he and Lord Kirkham search the house and struggle to solve the riddle of the fortune’s location, Philip learns that he is not as unimpressive as he thinks and that your family can be more than just your birth relatives.

Fact and fiction combined

Moses spent much of his working life in retail, but for the past 27 years has worked at a crematorium, where he became chapel supervisor. He drew inspiration for Kirkham Hall, its surroundings and its people from his life in Shrewsbury; while his understanding of Philip came from the fact that he was also bullied and made fun of at school. Moses and his wife of 40 years are childless, much like Lord and Lady Kirkham in the book, and he is now an altar server and sacristan at a church in town. In his spare time, Moses enjoys driving, caravanning, classical music and computing.

B O O K E VE NTS Clare Mackintosh as she talks about her new novel After The End, a gripping and propulsive exploration of love, marriage, parenthood, and the road not taken. 6.30pm. Tickets £12.99 (including book) or £8 (redeemable against book).

David Nicholls, 10th July, Thornton Hall Hotel & Spa, Thornton Hough, Wirral The bestselling author of huge literary hit and major film One Day introduces his new novel, Sweet Sorrow. 12.30pm. Tickets £20 (including book) or £10 (redeemable against book).

Clare Mackintosh, 10th July, Linghams Bookshop, Heswall, Wirral Join author

George Alagiah, 28th August, Bushell Hall, Birkenhead School, Oxton, Wirral The BBC newsreader talks about his first fiction book, The Burning Land, set in contemporary South Africa, where the international fight for ownership of the country’s land has turned the nation into a powder keg. With the murder of Lesedi Motlantshe – one of the nation’s socalled ‘children of the future’ – the fuse is well and truly lit. 7pm. Tickets £14.99 (including book) or £10 (ticket only).

Gladfest, Gladstone’s Library, Hawarden, 6th-8th September Gladfest brings contemporary writing from across the UK to north Wales, and the line-up for the seventh annual event includes Patrick Gale (Take Nothing With You) and Salley Vickers (The Librarian), who return with their latest works, while Sarah Perry (Melmoth), Michael Nobbs (Drawing Your Life) and Oliver Emanuel (The 306: Day) will run masterclasses. The literary world is buzzing with news of Damian Barr’s first novel, You Will Be Safe Here, which will also feature, and Kit de Waal (Common People), Alix Nathan (The Warlow Experiment) and Suzette A Hill (The Cambridge Plot), who will talk about their books. Event tickets costs from £7; day and weekend tickets are also available.

July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 157

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Another two top tips for readers from the team at Linghams Bookshop in Heswall, Wirral The Doll Factory by Elizabeth Macneal This debut novel from Elizabeth Macneal is a fast-paced work of crime fiction set in Victorian England, following two main characters: Silas and Iris. Silas is a creepy individual who likes to collect dead animals so he can stuff them and sell them to local artists. Iris, meanwhile, works with her twin sister in a doll factory, but dreams of leaving both her sister and her dreary employment. At night when the house is asleep, she likes to paint as a form of escapism from the factory’s drug-addled owner. Iris’s sister doesn’t like her for many reasons – one of them being she contracted small pox and blames Iris for not contracting the disease herself. Furthermore she believes Iris was behind her suitor breaking off his friendship with her. She is now pock-marked and blind in one eye, while Iris is a beauty to behold. The tale unfolds as you watch Silas and Iris race to towards an ending quite like no other! Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid This gripping novel is written in the form of a pseudodocumentary, with interviews with members of fictional band Daisy Jones & The Six, following their rise to fame and their split in Chicago on 12th July 1979. Daisy Jones is a crazy, beautiful, hedonistic rock chick with the voice of an angel, who mixes with rock stars twice her age and never goes to bed before sunrise. The Six are a band formed by Billy Dunne, making their way to the heady heights of stardom, which bring with it all the trappings of fame for a rock’n’roll band in the 1970s. Just as the band are starting to achieve sell-out audiences and huge record deals, Billy and Daisy meet. They have an intense chemistry and the world loves them together. The tale comes together for their biggest concert yet – in Chicago.

The Old Fisherman by Patricia Parker The harbour’s full of fishing boats, Jumbled nets and coils of rope, Lobster pots and fishing gear, Where old salts sit, sipping beer. They reminisce of days gone past, Of years of toil before the mast. As bottles empty one by one, The conversation, once begun Gets louder and more animated. Perhaps, a little exaggerated. As tourists listen with eager ears But, is there a twinkle in the eye? Not quite the truth, not quite a lie. Dog Walker by Robert Lowe It may be local, And it may be small; But for me, With my legs as they are, It’s a wilderness, This quiet bay on the north Wales coast. I am most lucky To have it so near: Me and the dog, She’s a border collie, We go for a walk every day, Rain or shine, And meet other people of a like mind. Or, rather, I walk, she runs: After the gulls, After the waves, After imaginary things – Or, at least, Things I can’t sense, Or guess they are there, But she can; Or so it seems. For dogs have senses we have lost. Then, when we are gone As far as the groyne, Over the stones, over the sand, With the traffic sound From the A55 Receding, into the ground, it feels As if I had strolled a hundred miles. And I feel twice as alive As when I was young. Then we turn back; And we’ll do it again Every day, until I die, Or she’s put down. People will miss us; what will they say? I wish there were some other way. But all good things Come to an end, Or so they say. Until then, though, I enjoy each day.

The Point of Cake (for those who just don’t get it!) by Edna Crosby Patiently we stand in line, queuing for our treat, Then someone whines, ‘No point in cakes – they’re full of sugar and wheat. Just calories and no good things to help improve your health, Expensive too, for what they are, do nothing for your wealth!’ They don’t see the point of cake, However can that be? We’ll make them pay for what they said, and then we’ll have our tea. We show our irritation, but it’s only a little hitch; (We’ll stick a lettuce in their mouth and roll them in a ditch!) Imagine life without a cake to lift you when you’re down, The very thought just saddens me and makes me want to frown. I love a doughnut or a scone or slice of jammy tart. To say they’re pointless is so cruel and strikes my very heart. Christmas cake, a few mince pies, a slice of bara brith, To say they’re fattening is a lie, it’s just an evil myth. How can a chocolate muffin not be full of all that’s good? Lemon drizzle, Danish pastry – oooh, could eat a heap, I could! They order just a cup of tea, no sugar, just skimmed milk. What a goody-goody – I’m sure you’ve met their ilk. Why can’t they just be more like us, indulging one small vice? The only point they need to get is – CAKE IS JUST PLAIN NICE! Gratitude by Norman Marshall Thank you for dappled light And skies of cerulean blue. A walk is my delight Upon the morning’s dew. A stroll down the avenue Through tallest of limes; A moving theatre will arrest you, Behold the chapel’s chimes. The cornfields are swollen Under this cloudless sky; All life is golden And thankful am I.

We want your poems! We’ll print our favourites each edition and share your creative spirit with our readers. Send them to Poetry Page, Shire, PO Box 276, Oswestry, Shropshire SY10 1FR or email editorial@shiremagazine.co.uk.

158 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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What’s in your stars? Aries

20th March – 20th April No sound of clapping comes from one hand without the other – and this metaphor suggests you need be in tune with someone else this summer for an important event to be a success. Don’t stride ahead on impulse; wait for that all-important other half to make the whole and you’ll find 2019 is a vintage summer that is well remembered.


21st June – 23rd July A solar eclipse in July signals attention to family. Ancient Babylonian astrology suggested a troubled portent but the understanding of eclipses has revealed differences. This eclipse provides an energetic platform for clearing away debris around family issues. If something has been casting shadows, now’s an opportunity for healing – a good omen indeed!


23rd September – 22nd October Jupiter’s sextile angle to Libra indicates a flow of energy that can develop a professional sphere important to self expression. It allows you to think bigger – a general function of your optimism. However, keep this in mind: be alert to the opening of doors but don’t take giant leaps for what you see as a great opportunity – step by step is advised.


21st December – 20th January A July full moon highlights your difficulty parting with anything – you’re a hoarder and it’s time to declutter. That shoelace won’t come in handy, your old computer is just taking up space in the attic and that old photo of your first love is now so dog-eared you can only make out the seesaw, not who’s on it! It’s time to tidy up your life Capricorn!


20th April – 21st May Change can be unwelcome – staying in a secure rut may be preferable. The rut demands nothing – it serves no challenge and offers a daily facsimile serving as a comfort zone – but it’s not comfortable, is it? That’s why a revolution of thought about how you’re living your life is necessary. Change the dynamic and the dynamic will change things for the better.


23rd July – 23rd August Your love life is enjoying a boost, possibly because of exotic locations and overtures. I see balloons, I see cakes, I see gifts; of course I do – it’s your birthday time and love’s all around. I won’t inhibit that, only say that you may not have to wait for what you want but you may need to watch the weight. Work it out!.


23rd October – 22nd November Erecting a barrier between yourself and others protects your secretive nature, but with Uranus the destroyer of barriers unleashing potent opposition through Taurus, your most difficult adversary in the zodiac, show you have nothing to hide to someone who may think you have. Secrets make people suspicious and you would know all about that!


20th January – 19th February It’s not strength or intelligence that is the key to unlocking potential, it’s continuous effort. Don’t back away from a project or cause that you’ve already given time to. Perseverance is your greatest asset, even though opposition presents itself and tries to exercise an ‘I’m the boss’ attitude. This is where indifference will pay dividends – providing it’s applied with care.


21st May – 21st June Artificial intelligence is an area of science emphasising the creation of intelligent machines. But there’s nothing artificial about your intelligence – you’re not a machine, so think empathetically as well as logically to assess a work situation. Sensing the mood of those around you is as important as mental dexterity.


23rd August – 23rd September It was once believed in Eastern Europe that by taking the soil from beneath a potential lover’s shoe print and placing in a pot with marigold seeds, love would bloom like the flowers. There’s no need bothering with this as Cupid is ahead of the game and your personal magnetism is electrifying! Trying to keep your cool could be difficult as summer heats up.


22nd November – 21st December You’re like a camera with the shutter open, recording everything you see – one of life’s opportunists, eager to expand self knowledge and just as eager to express it to anyone who will listen. You have been going over some old ground lately, but soon you’ll find yourself moving forward again in a year that will prove unforgettable – a developing picture!


19th February – 20th March Imagination gives us belief in ourselves or takes it away. You’re wavering here, so listen up. Your ego – that is, your self image – is suffering from your worst illusions, so your will needs to go into battle because it’s more powerful. Who’s the most compassionate in the zodiac? You. Who’s the most creative? You. Who needs to trust their judgement? YOU!

Gloria Mans studied astrology and astronomy over an intensive two-year period at the Faculty Of Astrological Studies in London 27 years ago. She has since written for many publications, appeared numerous times on television and has an impressive client list. The legendary Fay Weldon calls her ‘magic’ and the BBC icon Valerie Singleton calls her ‘sensitive’. You can reach her at starglow@pc-q.net or via her website, www.gloriamans.com. 160 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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You have to be in it to win it! Go on, enter today!

Another edition of Shire, another chance to win some of our fabulous prizes – exclusive tickets available to our lovely readers. Get your entries in by the closing date and good luck!

A PRIZE TO MAKE YOU LOOK AND FEEL AMAZING! This issue, we’ve teamed up with womenswear boutique owner and fashion expert Abi Fisher to offer one lucky reader the ultimate stylish prize. Abi travels Europe to discover the latest trends and unique brands to bring back to her clients in Cheshire. From her stunning showroom in Willington, Abi and her team put together seasonal collections of clothes, offering exclusive designs and advice to ensure her customers look and feel great. If you want to be one of those lucky ladies, this is your chance! The Abi Fisher Exclusive Collection offers hand-picked designs from across Europe and a styling service. Clients come from across the country to discover brands that are not readily available on the high street that offer classic pieces with a twist. Her stunning collection, which includes her own brand, offers affordable luxury and statement pieces which will last season after season. We’re offering one winner a £200 voucher to spend in Abi’s Willington store. Abi will also host you and 12 friends for an evening of champagne sipping and outfit admiring at an exclusive party just for you. With styles to suit everyone, you’ll have loads to choose from, but if you want to get more of an idea of what’s in store, check out the range at www.abifisher.co.uk. To be in with a chance of winning this amazing prize, fill in the form below and send it to Shire by 19th August. The prize voucher must be used by 31st December 2019 and is only redeemable in the showroom at Park View, Wood Lane, Willington, Cheshire CW6 0HJ. Good luck!

WIN! A family day ticket to Farmer Phil’s Music Festival This family-friendly


Congratulations to our lucky winners from the May/June issue of Shire!

Hilary, Newtown Festival of Discovery

Jenny, Ruthin Fame The Musical

Kath, Abergele Oswestry Show

Ken, Telford Shrewsbury Flower Show

Sara, Davenham Welshpool & Llanfair Light Railway

Suzanne, Shrewsbury Shrewsbury Food Festival

festival, which takes place near Shrewsbury from 9th to 11th August, offers on-site camping, two stages featuring more than 50 outstanding live acts, three bars, children’s entertainment, the highest quality food vendors catering for all tastes, hot showers and clean toilets.

WIN! An annual family pass to the Ironbridge Museums There are 10

award-winning museums at this World Heritage Site, and the lucky winners will be able to visit as many times as they like in a year. With accurate re-enactments and restorations, as well as handson activities, there’s something for everyone here!

WIN! Afternoon tea for four at Cheerbrook Farm Shop, Nantwich

CLOSING DATE: 2nd August

CLOSING DATE: 19th August

CLOSING DATE: 19th August

WIN! A pair of tickets to see Oliver! at Aberystwyth Arts Centre

WIN! A family day ticket to Shrewsbury Folk Festival

The location of a sumptuous deli as well as a butcher’s, baker’s and coffee shop, Cheerbrook is well worth a visit. The lucky winner of this afternoon tea for four will even get a bottle of prosecco with which to wash down their delicious treats.

WIN! A family ticket for the Mold Food & Drink Festival

WIN! One of five pairs of tickets to the Passion For Power Classic Motor Show Over the

Lionel Bart’s classic retelling of Charles Dickens’ masterpiece, Oliver Twist, is on at the Arts Centre from Friday 9th to Saturday 31st August. This award-winning musical adaptation of the novel springs to life with some of the most memorable characters and songs ever to hit the stage.

Two adults and two children can enjoy a day at the festival on Monday 26th August, with the chance to see established folk artists from the UK and across the world. The festival will take you on a voyage of discovery and bring you everchanging musical colours with their breathtaking performances.

The feast of food, music and family fun returns to the Flintshire town for the 14th year from 21st to 22nd September, offering a wealth of delights including the very best exhibitors, cookery theatres, produce, and leading names in the culinary world. The family ticket is for two adults and two children

weekend of 17th and 18th August at Tatton Park, Knutsford, you can see more than 90 first-class classic and performance car club displays, over 300 private entries of the highest standard and a massive 250-plot autojumble. There is something there for the whole family.

CLOSING DATE: 2nd August

CLOSING DATE: 19th August

CLOSING DATE: 19th August

CLOSING DATE: 9th August

HOW TO ENTER Fill in the form with your answer circled (you’ll need to read the magazine to find it!), and include your name, address and daytime contact number. Send it by the closing date to Competitions, Shire Magazine, PO Box 276, Oswestry, Shropshire SY10 1FR Winners will be notified by email, so don’t forget to include your email address and daytime telephone number.

RULES OF THE COMPETITIONS DATA PROTECTION NOTICE Superstar Publishing Ltd will use your information for administration and analysis purposes and may contact you from time to time with relevant offers, information or for research purposes. Your details will not be passed on to third parties except the sponsors of these competitions. Please tick the relevant box if you do not wish to be contacted. COMPETITION RULES The promoter of these competitions is Shire Magazine, Superstar Publishing, PO Box 276, Oswestry, SY10 1FR. The competitions are open to all readers of our magazine and viewers of our websites except employees of the prize providers. The winner(s) will be the first person or persons drawn after the closing date who has completed the correct answer. No cash alternative is available. The winners names can be obtained by writing to the competition address with a self-addressed envelope after the closing date. The winner agrees to participate in any follow-up publicity and must provide a photograph to be published in the following issue to claim their prize. Superstar Publishing may print the name only of entrants to this competition in subsequent issue(s) of Shire Magazine. This is to enable competition entrants to fairly claim a promotional offer, for competition entrants only. By entering this competition you are giving permission for Shire Magazine to print your name only. No personal information will be printed. No purchase necessary, answers on a postcard are accepted. For full details of our Privacy Policy, please go to www.shiremagazine.co.uk.

Q: Who wrote the children’s book Tabby McTat? a) Roald Dahl b) Beatrix Potter c) Julia Donaldson

Name Address


Postcode Daytime contact number Email (please complete) Please send me further information about Shire July/August 2019 | SHIRE MAGAZINE 161

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COMING NEXT ISSUE The sun may have only just arrived in full force but here at Shire we’re already busy gathering in our autumn harvest… of content for the next edition! Our September/October issue will have all the usual regulars you’ve come to expect and more special features besides, so don’t miss picking up your copy of the packed autumn issue!


Whether you’re studying yourself, have children to get back in to the school routine or work in education, you need to check out all the latest news and views from the world of academia as the term starts this autumn. Our education section will be packed with everything you need to know.

SPOOKY SEASON We count down to Halloween – you’ll want to keep the latest issue to hand for all the ghostly goings on and dark and devilish days out, as well as seasonal ideas to mark the occasion in spooky style.



Our searching 20 questions will be answered by hurdling legend Colin Jackson. The sporting hero inspired many of our current Olympic champions and talks to Shire about his new role providing encouragement and motivation to youngsters as Wrexham Glyndwr University’s new chancellor.

Harvest festival

We focus on more of the towns across the Shire patch, with a closer at Wrexham and Bridgnorth.

D O N ’ T F O R G E T…


Autumn brings with it lots of work in the garden, so we’ll be offering advice and suggestions to get the most out of your outdoor spaces as the summer ends. Whether you need recipe suggestions to deal with your bountiful crops or ideas to extend the use of your garden with our outdoor style guides, it’s all in the next issue of Shire!

HISTORY AND MYSTERY We take a look at those ancestors who left significant footprints across the region – the Vikings. As well as making their mark on our local landscape, the Scandinavian invaders also left behind many genetic links.


As usual, your dedicated and hard-working Shire team will do their best to see as many shows and attend as many events as possible – and report back to you!

As the days get cooler, it’s important you are ready for the winter ahead; we share some expert homes and interiors advice to ensure your house is comfy and cosy. Whether it’s a new look and some soft furnishings you need, or a whole new heating system to consider, we’ll help you get ready for the colder months.

Don’t go anywhere until you’ve checked our What’s On guide for September and October, including all the family fun for the half-term holidays. The next edition of Shire will include our usual 60-page guide to all the events and activities that are going on across the region.

GET IN TOUCH Shire wants to hear from you! 1. Tell us about your upcoming events We work in advance, so 1st August is the deadline to let us know about events for our September/October 2019 issue. 2. Share your reader stories Have you got an extraordinary or exciting story to tell? We would love to share it with our readers. Send us an email and don’t forget to include a picture or two! 3. Contribute to one of our pages Send all your submissions and pictures by email to editorial@shiremagazine.co.uk or call 01691 661270. You can also get in touch via social media – just search for ‘Shire Magazine’ on Facebook or Instagram.

162 SHIRE MAGAZINE | July/August 2019

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Shire Magazine July-August 2019  

North Wales, Mid Wales, Shropshire, Cheshire, Wirral, Whats on, magazine, days out, events, restaurants, reviews, homes, gardens, arts, craf...

Shire Magazine July-August 2019  

North Wales, Mid Wales, Shropshire, Cheshire, Wirral, Whats on, magazine, days out, events, restaurants, reviews, homes, gardens, arts, craf...

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