INSIDE THE MAGAZINE AIR TRANSFORMING START THE YEAR WITH HOPE AMBULANCE LITTLE HITHE KENT, SURREY, QUARRY SUSSEX PAGES 6 to 7
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BY THE COMMUNITY, FOR THE COMMUNITY
Dear Readers, Welcome to the January magazine. We live in strange times, but as usual the magazine is jam packed with lots of local information and local businesses. Please support as many as you can - use them or lose them! Like no time before, your community needs you. In case you weren’t aware, we run Dartford Living alongside volunteer members of the local community FOR the local community. It’s the only independently run magazine serving the local area with information, fun, good news and positive local stories! Please get in touch if you would like to write an article for the magazine. If writing is not for you then perhaps you could volunteer to deliver 100 or so magazines to your local roads you will guarantee your copy of the magazine and get a little exercise as well! If you email firstname.lastname@example.org we will add you to our e-newsletter and you will join 7,000 others who receive a copy of the magazine by email once a month. Until next time, stay safe,
6-7 Air Ambulance, Kent, Surrey and Sussex 8 Transformation of a disused Little Hithe quarry 10 Dartford Giving 14 Debbie’s delicious recipe 20-21 Navigating the options for first time buyers 22 Yoga Nidra 24-25 Travel Inspiration- with Harden Holidays 26 Sleep Lifestyle 28 Fitness 35 Senior Snippets 37 Starting the year with hope 38 Life under the Stairs 39 Sports Roundup 42 Where to go locally 44 Dartford painted rocks 45 Christmas Classic poem 47 Car News 48-49 From Despair to up there 50-52 Dartford born MasterChef winner shares his winter warming recipes 55 Useful numbers 56-57 Business directory
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AIR AMBULANCE KENT, SURREY, SUSSEX By Katie Rose
Air Ambulance Kent Surrey Sussex (KSS) is always ready to provide world-class, fast-response, emergency medical care every hour of every day. Their missions have saved thousands of lives which is only possible thanks to their amazing supporters. It costs more than £14 million a year to sustain their world leading, cutting edge, innovative service, 89% of which is donated or raised by the people of Kent, Surrey and Sussex.
Find out more and support KSS by visiting aakss.org.uk TEAM KSS MAJA GAVRILOVSKI, HEMS DOCTOR “A s a medical student, I was always inspired by the amazing work the ambulance service did, helping one patient after another, working tirelessly in a challenging environment and still, always being ready for the next call: they were my heroes and I knew I wanted to be part of such a team once I became a doctor. My dream job was decided - it had to be specialising in Emergency Medicine, joined with prehospital care working on an Air Ambulance. Having seen the team from Air Ambulance Kent Surrey Sussex (KSS) bring patients to the Emergency Department, and witnessing firsthand the level of expertise and passion of the team to deliver the best road side care possible, the decision was easy to make – KSS was the charity I wanted to be part of. It was a long road with lots of learning and commitment.
Last year alone, they were called out to help over 2,500 people in life-threatening conditions. KSS never stops innovating and improving the care they can give, which means every donation they receive is vital. They want to make sure they are available each and every time someone needs them. For 18 hours of the day, KSS operates with two crews. For the remaining six, when it is quieter but there are still people out there who need them, they operate with one crew. This year has been incredibly
Towards the end of my training as an Emergency Medicine Consultant difficult for so many. KSS launched I applied to join Team KSS, and a Coronavirus Emergency Appeal in in 2016 my dream came true; the April, as the charity faced a shortfall dream I had never thought would happen. I became a HEMS (Helicopter of £2.9 million pounds. Emergency Medical Service) Doctor. Thanks to their incredible supporters they have raised over £1.9 million, Now, I am able to work as an enabling them to remain fully Emergency Medicine Consultant at St operational at all times throughout Thomas’ Hospital in London and as the pandemic. KSS must raise a HEMS Doctor for Air Ambulance Kent further £1 million to ensure they Surrey Sussex. I still feel privileged can continue to save lives 24 hours to be part of this amazing charity with its dedicated team of people, a day, seven days a week. providing critical care at the roadside, Their priority remains responding to always pushing the boundaries in the sickest or most critically injured pre-hospital medicine and striving across Kent, Surrey and Sussex in to be better. I can proudly say I have the best job in the world!” their hour of need.
BEN MACAULEY, HEMS PARAMEDIC “In 2002 at the age of 21 I started my career with South East Coast Ambulance Service, working on the ambulances, seeing the work of the HEMS Doctor and Paramedic first-hand. I was inspired after learning that Air Ambulance Kent Surrey Sussex (KSS) is a charity and depended heavily on the public. After 10 years I decided to apply for my ‘dream job’ that I honestly never thought would happen, and in 2012 joined Team KSS as a HEMS (Helicopter Emergency Medical Service) Paramedic. I am fortunate to have had a long career with KSS, and I am enormously proud of the cutting-edge care that we provide, bringing the Emergency Department to the roadside. Having been part of the charity’s journey, from its first 24-hour shift in 2013 to carrying blood and plasma.“ VIRTUAL TALKS “We have a fantastic story to tell and we want to share it with you, especially during these challenging times.” Book a free virtual talk from one of KSS’ inspirational volunteer speakers, to gain a deeper understanding of what the charity does. They usually give talks in-person to a wide range of businesses, club and societies across Kent, Surrey and Sussex, but unfortunately, this isn’t possible due to current restrictions relating to the Coronavirus pandemic. So, they’re being run digitally instead. If you’re hosting a virtual meeting and are part of a group or club, KSS would love to join you virtually. Contact them to book your virtual talk: email@example.com, 01634 471 900.
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TRANSFORMATION OF A DISUSED QUARRY AT LITTLE HITHE Plans to transform a disused formerquarryat Greenhithe in north Kent into an exemplar living development at Little Hithe with new direct access to rail services has been submitted to Dartford Borough Council for consideration.
The plans, submitted by privately-owned developer Imperial Corporate Capital, account for 187 highquality homes as well as a unique opportunity to improve access to Greenhithe station for new and existing residents.
The site, a 0.8ha (2.15acre) former chalk quarry which has been disused since the late 1960s, is located directly adjacent to the station on land north of London Road. An investment of £1million plus will ensure a new tree-lined link to the London bound platform for pedestrians and cyclists will be created, with new ticket barriers and ticket machines. The planning application also includes the potential to assist with improvements to the local highway network. 1 8 7 a pa r t m e n ts , i n cl ud i n g
surface-level drop off spaces for the station are also included in the plans. Designs by award-winning Kent architects Hollaway have focused on providing an attractive, landscaped setting for the scheme, respectful to its location and integrated into the existing environment. Facing south towards the train station, all apartments overlook a landscaped podium garden for all residents to use. The building steps up from six storeys to nine storeys, with the roof space created by the stepping configuration creating large open terraces for the top floor apartments, and areas of green roof located immediately in front. All other apartments will have their own balconies. South-facing photovoltaic (solar) cells on the top roof will reduce the building’s energy consumption.
Fabeo Russell, Chief Executive Officer of Imperial Corporate Capital PLC said “We have set out to create an outstanding gateway building that will help meet the current and future housing needs of the Borough. Our proposals actively support the use of sustainable transport with new affordable homes, will offer 1, 2 or immediate access for local rail 3 bedroom units and each home will passengers wanting to commute have one parking space at basement across London and Kent. level. An additional 50 basement parking spaces for visitors and 12
â€œWorking with leading architects we have designed the scheme to incorporate large amounts of landscaping to appeal to both re s i d e n ts a n d n ei g hbo u ri n g residents. The designs enable an exceptional quality of living with access to communal green space, terraces and balconies, plenty of natural light and high-quality interiors.
â€œWe believe it is a really exciting and sustainable opportunity to deliver significant social, economic and environmental benefits to the Borough.â€?
and Bluewater shopping centre is just minutes away.
The planning application can be viewed on the Dartford Borough Council website (reference 19/01557/ The area is a desirable place to live ful). Find out more at https:// owing to its strategic location close imperialcorporatecapital.com/ to the A2 and M25 and 50-minute portfolio/little-hithe/ train journey to London. Greenhithe village offers local shops and services
By Kate Hargreaves
Happy New Year! Let’s hope we have a good one ahead of us. If you want to up your karma, why not try out a new voluntary role. This month I’m writing about getting involved with charities in a more formal way.
fundraising, and managing specific events. Charities rely on the trustees a lot and a charity’s success and growth will be largely dependent on the dedication of its trustees, so the more time you are willing to give, the better. The duration of the trusteeship also varies, with some charities asking you to commit to a couple of years for example. “Are there any requirements?” As this is a formal role, there are some requirements, which can be found at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/ charity-trustee-whats-involved. Similar to the school governor role that I wrote about in September, sometimes charities will be in need of certain skills, such as HR or marketing experience, but more generalist passionate people are equally appreciated.
Charity trustee “What is it?” The trustees of a charity are the people who jointly share responsibility for directing how the charity is managed and run. Trustees ensure the charity is carrying out the purpose for which it was set up. “Would I enjoy it?” I think the best thing about being a trustee is that you can make it what you want. You can choose a charity that you’re passionate about and then carve out a role that makes best use of your skills and interests.
“What would I get out of it?” You can use your existing skills to support the charity, as well as developing new skills. As your involvement can vary from pretty hands-on to more strategic, it really is a case of you get out what you put in.
“This sounds great, how do I get involved?” Have a look at https://www.charityjob.co.uk/ volunteer-jobs/trustees or https://jobs.theguardian.com/ landingpage/3000004/charitytrustee-html/ for some of the current vacancies. As noted above, it’s important to be passionate about the cause, so it might be worth reaching out to a charity that is close to your heart, as many vacancies are not advertised on those sites. Some wellknown national charities have local branches, so have a look for those too. The actual application process will vary between the charities
“How much time do I need for it?” The absolute minimum will be If you have any questions, feel free attendance at the trustee meetings, to email email@example.com. but the timing of these varies a lot, Happy volunteering! depending on the size of the charity and the trustees’ involvement with the day-to-day activities. It’s common for there to be sub-committees that oversee certain areas, such as finance,
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(REALLY EASY!) CHOCOLATE FUDGE By Debbie Dickinson
With our day to day lives changing so much over the last year, I thought I’d share this really easy recipe. Just buy the ingredients with your next shop and they’ll sit in the cupboard happily until the time comes when you need a quick, easy and delicious activity to entertain the kids!
What to do: will take about 30 minutes. Grease and line a 20cm square cake/ Cut into small squares. brownie tin. You could try white chocolate (you Put 2 inches of water into a saucepan may need slightly more) or dark and heat up until it is just simmering. chocolate. Pour the condensed milk into a glass bowl and sit on the top of the Or how about stirring in a spoonful saucepan – making sure the bottom of Irish cream if you’re not making of the glass bowl does not touch the with kids!! You’ll need: water underneath. A tin of condensed milk – usually Enjoy! 398g Add the chocolate and stir occasionally until the chocolate has The same weight in milk chocolate melted and is fully combined with A selection of tasty, decorative the condensed milk. treats – smarties/marshmallow/ sprinkles/sweets etc Pour the mix into the prepared tin and use the back of a spoon to level and smooth the top. Decorate with your choice of treats and pop into the fridge to set. This
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SETTING INTENTIONS FOR THE YEAR AHEAD WITH YOGA NIDRA
of the mind to make a resolve and this resolve is known as a sankalpa. I have found that teaching yoga nidra and sankalpa discovery around the new year works really well as it’s a time when many are thinking about making New Year’s resolutions. When people are naturally thinking about what they might want to change or add into their lives, it means they are already in a reflective frame of mind and that’s helpful for the practice. It also means that I am able to offer something to my students that supports where they are in this moment, looking to the year ahead.
For many of us the closing of one year and the beginning of the next feels like a natural time to reflect on the past and look towards the future, perhaps imagining and planning what type of year we would like to have. This year in particular I feel it’s important to take time to absorb all we have been through in the last 12 months, all that we have lost, all that we have experienced, all that we have gained. By digesting the past year as best as we are able to, we can then more clearly tune into our hopes and dreams and aspirations for the year ahead. I teach an annual workshop each January called ‘Stretch, Relax and Resolve’. It’s a yoga and meditation workshop designed to sweep away cobwebs and set intentions for the year ahaed. We focus on stretches to release tension in the body, meditation and breathing techniques to release tension in the mind and a long guided relaxation known as yoga nidra. Yoga nidra can bring an incredible calmness, quietness & clarity, allowing us to connect to our unconscious mind
and with this connection we look to discover what we really want for ourselves in the coming year. Though often translated as yogic sleep, during yoga nidra we are in a relaxed state of awake-ness. In true sleep our conscious mind switches off and our unconscious mind takes control. In yoga nidra the conscious mind remains active and as we relax, we are able to make a connection to our unconscious mind. We can then use the conscious mind to direct the unconscious mind, very much like self-hypnosis. We traditionally use the connection between the two parts
Of course every day is a new day and January is not imbued with special magic. While the new year is a conventional time to make resolutions, each new moment offers the same opportunity for us to connect to our true selves and yoga nidra can be practiced at any time. If you are interested and want to know more about the practice of yoga nidra, please do get in touch. I am always more than happy to talk about yoga. Wishing you clarity for the year ahead. Take good care of yourself, Clair.
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TRAVEL INSPIRATION: SARDINIA By Harden Holidays
At the point of writing this article the new strand of the virus is making waves through Kent and London and with all travel banned in and out of the country it is hard to picture what 2021 will look like for the travel industry. We are yet again bracing ourselves for the worst and hoping for the best. Yes, even amongst all this chaos we strongly believe that there is hope and that the vaccination programme and testing programme will see beautiful holiday memories created yet again in 2021 for all of us. In the meantime, here is some travel inspiration for you: Top Reasons why Sardinia is perfect for a romantic getaway Romantic getaways are the perfect opportunity to spend time with your loved one and visit a beautiful destination together. Whether it is a spontaneous or planned trip away, honeymoon, anniversary or even perhaps to pop that special question, Sardinia is the place to visit. As no one conveys ‘amore’ like the Italians, what destination could be more perfect? The stunning surroundings, splendid food and wine are sure to make you fall in love with the destination as well as each other. Our top reasons to visit Sardinia on a romantic getaway have to be the exceptional hotels, wonderful beaches, excellent food, drink and numerous activities and places to visit to enjoy together. Beaches in Sardinia Boasting numerous white sandy beaches and azure waters you can find the perfect spot to relax and swim. Sunning yourselves on the sand and dipping yourself in an out of the warm sea is the ideal scenario for you and your partner to unwind and enjoy each other’s company. You will be spoilt for choice with so many glorious beaches in both the
north and south of the island. There is the quiet beach of Capo Spartivento in the south or, the national Sardinian monument of Cala Goloritzè, a beautiful bay that is only accessible via the sea. For those who are more active, watersports are in abundance with prominent winds and the warm temperatures of the Mediterranean Sea. Sardinia is known as one of the top watersports destinations in the Mediterranean with many of the activities wind-based including, surfing, windsurfing, sailing and most recently, kite surfing. For both beach-lovers and watersports enthusiasts we recommend heading to the resorts near Porto Cervo such as, Golfo Aranci and Cannigione in northern Sardinia. Treat yourselves in Porto Cervo The coastal area of Costa Smeralda is sure to impress with its sophisticated and exclusive atmosphere and the impressive town of Porto Cervo. There is a plethora of fine dining options with elegant restaurants and cafes offering spectacular views of the coast. Why not treat yourselves to some delicious Sardinian cuisine, such as the local speciality of porchetto otherwise known as suckling pig, over a glass of Mirto followed by Limoncello.
Find love in the Sardinian countryside If you are one for a little adventure I suggest edging away from the coast to hike, walk or stroll around the delightful countryside, traditional towns and villages. Or aboard the little green train (Trenino Verde) which will take you from Palau to Tempio, Bosa to Macomer and Arbatax to Mandas showing you the best of Sardinia’s beautiful landscape. Equally why not hop onto a ferry across to Corisca to spend time on this exquisite French island. If you are after somewhere a bit quieter and more secluded, then catch a boat to one of the islands of archipelago La Maddalena. Romance in the city Southern Sardinia is home to the island’s capital Cagliari, ideal for those looking for a romantic city getaway. There are plenty of vibrant restaurants, bars, cafes and numerous shops. The medieval old quarter of Castello with its cathedral and watchtowers will make for a wonderful morning or afternoon stroll. There are also beautiful sandy beaches for those wanting to relax and enjoy the sun after a day around the town. Most romantic place to stay in Sardinia
Sardinia is home to some of the most luxurious hotels in the Mediterranean offering Sardinian charm, sophistication, luxury and excellent service. Whether you’re staying the north or the south you will be sure to stay in style, luxury and comfort. If you are looking for somewhere special to take your loved one then I would recommend the five-star Hotel Capo d’Orso Thalasso & Spa located in Cala Capra Bay, four kilometres from the town of Palau in the north-east of the island. This exclusive hotel is surrounded by stunning beaches and offers fantastic facilities, high quality service and outstanding dining. With breakfast served to the calming sound of a harp what could be a more romantic start to your day? There are two beaches by the hotel and a private marina offering boat hire and boat excursions. If you simply wish to relax then why not spend some time together in the Thalasso and Spa wellness centre. For a trip to Sardinia or any other part of world come and talk to us in Dartford town centre or contact us via email info@ hardenholidays.co.uk or call us on 0800 023 8974 number. Make sure you follow us on social media for further inspiration and exclusive offers.
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SLEEP LIFESTYLE Sleep. We all do it, but many of us don’t do it well. At The Bed Post we understand good night’s rest is essential to a healthy existence, protecting you physically and mentally as well as boosting your quality of life. Unfortunately, many of us struggle to fall asleep, have bad dreams, can’t wake up in the morning and then feel constantly tired!
will help you to wind down and relax, removing you from the hectic, technology-crammed world that we live in. Reduce the intensity of artificial light in your home by using dimmer switches or low wattage bulbs. Maintain a regular bedtime routine and sleep pattern. Ensure your bed is in good condition, is it still the right bed for you?? Use a hot water bottle if you get cold. Avoid drinking alcohol or caffeine before bed. Switch off your tech a couple of hours before bedtime – that includes your phone!
Sleep plays a significant role in healing and repairing your heart and blood vessels. It helps us maintain a healthy weight and a good balance of hormones, as well as controlling sugar levels. In terms of mental health, a great night’s sleep makes the brain work properly. It helps us to learn, remember, solve problems and make decisions, as well as safeguarding against stress, mood swings and depression. It’s rather worrying that the majority of people don’t sleep very well! The 21st century lifestyle is typically fast paced, chaotic and jam-packed with technology. From the moment we wake up we switch on our brains with smart phones, and as our day progresses, we’re presented with even more triggers. The continuous content that’s fed from TV and radio, real time social
Empty your bladder before bed and try not to consume too many liquids feeds and our constant checking before you sleep. of emails all make for a non-stop stimulation… It’s no wonder that Don’t nap during the day. many of us can’t switch off or fall asleep, then struggle to wake up in To find your perfect bed why don’t the morning and spend a lot of time you visit us at our showroom in Crayford, Petts Wood, Sevenoaks complaining “I can’t sleep!” or Sidcup or our website www.bed-post.co.uk There are simple ways to adjust your lifestyle to promote a better See our advert on page 23 night’s sleep. These minor changes
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Full-time, experienced, qualified yoga teacher, teaching practical yoga and meditation classes in the local community and now online. When Government advice allows, the regular schedule of in person group classes in Hextable, Swanley, Sidcup and Bexleyheath will resume. For now, all regular group classes are being held online. Yoga Alliance Professionals Senior Yoga Teacher and British Wheel of Yoga Foundation Course Tutor, I am qualified and experienced in making yoga accessible. I teach an embodied and practical approach to yoga, breath work and meditation, appropriate for all ages and abilities. You don’t need to be flexible to start! My classes are friendly, everybody is welcome, so come and see how it feels to tune in and connect yourself and feel better. Please visit my website for more information or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I look forward to hearing from you.
FITNESS - JANUARY [Re]-Starting your fitness regime in January
Whether you’re already on track or just starting for the first (or umpteenth) time, January is the time when people tend to attempt to get their health and fitness regime up and running. Whilst I’ve probably written about what you need to do to get started a hundred times, sometimes it’s useful to know what to avoid in order to be successful with it. The most common mistakes people make when starting their fitness journey are repeated year in, year out and are the reason you see busy gyms in January, with a [not so] gradual fade out by February and March. The most common mistake I see with people starting out is going from doing nothing, to doing too much. 3 gym sessions a week and a new diet might not seem like much, but if you’re used to eating what you want and not doing any workouts, you’ll probably struggle to stick to this. For exercise, you need to start small and build up. Let your body get used to it, and also create the habit of exercise. 1 or 2 sessions a week is fine, and more achievable for most people. Once it becomes a habit and you’re getting there consistently without missing workouts, you can add in another workout. Repeat this process each time you want to add another workout to the training plan. You can also start with shorter workouts that are less intimidating
and won’t leave you dreading the gym sessions. Work hard when you go, but there’s no need to overdo it. 30 minutes of hard work is a good starting point. You might also be adopting the “10,000 steps a day” mantra because you’ve heard that’s what you need to do – but again, this may be too much for some people. Instead, take your current average step count (be it 1,000 or 20,000) and simply add a couple of thousand steps to it. That’s maybe 15-20 minutes of walking added to your day. Very doable. Trying to go from 3,000 steps to 10,000 steps is going to be a real challenge both in time and effort. It’s achievable, but what’s the rush? Start a bit smaller and build it up over time. It won’t take long to get to the 10,000 and slowly integrating it into your days will be an easier transition. As for diet… This is HUGE. And by far the hardest part (training is the easy part). Trying to change too much at once (especially alongside changing your exercise habits as well) will inevitably lead to misery and failure. Don’t cut out all the foods you enjoy, reduce calories by huge amounts or put yourself through the hell of following a set plan. Start simply by eating what you already eat, just reducing portion sizes a bit. That‘s it! No magic, no complicated diets, just reduce portions sizes a little bit.
Alongside your increased activity levels, this will create enough of a calorie deficit to see some weight loss (unless you’re currently gaining weight rapidly), and you’re still eating all the foods you choose to eat. Then, once the weight loss has started to slow down a bit, you can start to swap some of the less healthy and calorie-dense foods, for some healthier, lower calorie options. You only need to do this for a few foods and it should keep the weight loss momentum going. There are hundreds of small steps you could take beyond this point, but don’t worry about them until these absolute fundamentals are ingrained into your body and brain. By all means do a bit more than this if you feel you can handle it, but don’t rush it. You’ve got plenty of time and you’ll be better off doing a little bit, all year, than doing a lot just in January and then giving up because you can’t keep it going. As always, if you need a helping hand, you can contact me through my website or social media and we can discuss your options, whether you’re a complete beginner or more advanced. I look forward to speaking to you! Mark www.MBonlinePT.com @MarkBroadbentPT
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SENIOR SNIPPETS SAFER COMPUTER USE
By Christina Uppenkamp Home Instead Senior Care
What are Senior Snippets? Senior Snippets is an advisorycolumn brought to you by Home Instead Senior Care Dartford, written with the older members of our community in mind. More seniors than ever are online, using the internet, email, and social media, and in turn, more devious people are finding ways to scam seniors out of money, identity and security, all which could have detrimental consequences. Security. Make sure your computer has all the security it needs as well as a security updating system. There are many anti-virus programs available, ranging from expensive to free, so check with a trusted source who is knowledgeable about computers.
ever give out personal information, including banking and credit card numbers, to anyone you don’t know. P u rch a s e m e rch a n d i s e f ro m reputable sources. Do your homework on the individual or company to Avoid sending personal information. ensure that they are legitimate. If Scammers might send out emails you are unsure, get a second opinion on bank letterheads saying there from someone you trust. is a problem with the account, and you need to update information, passwords and account numbers. Guard your account information carefully. Be sceptical of individuals This is a sign of a scam. representing themselves as foreign government officials asking for your Learn to identify spam and scams. help in placing large sums of money Don’t respond to emails from people in overseas bank accounts. Do not you don’t know or to emails you believe the promise of large sums of haven’t expected to receive. Don’t money for your cooperation.
Be wary of any offer that’s too good to be true. If you have been told you won a contest that you didn’t enter, or you’re being offered an incredible price on a vacation or product way below what you’d expect to pay, chances are they are scams. Do not reply to these emails. Use strong and unique passwords. Strong passwords are essential, just as they are with email and social media accounts. Never share your passwords with anyone, unless you have designated someone you trust to manage your accounts. Just like anyone else online, it’s important that seniors stay informed on how to stay safe when using computers and the internet. If you are concerned that you might have been scammed or if you know someone that has been affected by fraudsters, make sure to contact Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040. To make a suggestion for a future topic for this column, please email c.uppenkamp@dartford. h o m e i n stea d . co. u k o r c a l l 01322923750.
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START THE YEAR WITH HOPE At Christians Against Poverty (CAP), we help people who are struggling with problem debt and, no matter how challenging their situation may be, we know there’s always hope. We firmly believe this because we’ve met thousands of people who felt their money problems were hopeless. Now debt free, they’ve seen a genuine difference, had their hope restored, and feel more positive after getting help from CAP. Hope signals the beginning of change so, with this in mind, let’s look at some of the positive changes we can make as we step into 2021 with HOPE. HEALTH How can you make getting healthy easy and achievable? There are some great resources and tools out there to help with improving health and wellbeing. See nhs.uk/live-well/ for a range of ideas aimed at adults or nhs.uk/ change4life for great tips for families. Whatever you’re trying to achieve, break down your ultimate goal into a daily habit for success. For instance, if you dream of getting fit enough to run a marathon, then starting a daily habit of running for just ten minutes a day will get you closer to your ultimate goal.
running a FREE online budgeting course, starting in January, to teach skills to those who want to learn how to make good financial decisions so they have greater control over their finances. Visit capuk.org to find out more and register for the course. The one advertised isn’t at a suitable time? Further courses will be available soon, some on a weekday evening rather than during the daytime. In addition to learning how to manage your money well, there are also free college courses to boost your qualifications and skills and therefore improve your chances of finding work. Most courses under the Government’s Lifetime Skills Guarantee are available from April. In the meantime, have a look at what’s on offer through your local further education college. Learning anything new or retraining as an adult may seem like a challenge but remember that lots of people are in the same boat and you will not be alone. PEOPLE How can you build deep and lasting friendships with others? After many months of social distancing, your connections with other people may have felt different from what you’re used to. Maybe you’ve lost your job and work friendships along with it. Or maybe you’ve built new connections with the neighbours on your street through helping each other out with shopping deliveries.
Willpower alone can only achieve so much. As well as creating achievable goals, having support from a community will make the most difference. Look for support groups in your area, or ask a friend Professor Dunbar at Oxford University to keep you accountable. has reported that it’s vital to keep in regular contact to maintain OPPORTUNITY friendship. He advises that so long Could this be the year you seek out as we can stay in contact online then the opportunity to learn something our closer, more valued friendships new? should still survive. Perhaps the pandemic has left you out of work, or you feel it’s time Staying connected with others, even for a career change in 2021. Your if through a screen, has helped many change in circumstance, whether people realise that they’re not as it was welcome or not, may have alone or isolated as they may feel. meant a change in your income. So send that text, send that email Your local CAP Money team are or make that call to stay in touch.
EMERGENCY FUNDS Is it time to start building up savings for a rainy day? You’re probably familiar with the saying ‘saving for a rainy day’, and this is something we’re passionate about at CAP. Even just a few pounds a month soon builds up to create a buffer for unexpected events. Remember, saving isn’t just about putting money away. It can also mean paying less for particular products or services. Take some time to look at what you can realistically cut out completely – for example, are you still paying Direct Debits for services that you no longer use? Next, think about where you could cut back, such as limiting yourself to a treat night once a month instead of weekly. Could you reduce a multi-screen Netflix subscription to the cheaper single-screen option? Finally, consider where you can cut costs. We all know about trying to get reduced prices for energy and mobile phones, but have a look at the other services you use. Taking the time to seek out better deals can be time well spent and money well saved. For more top money saving tips, visit moneysavingexpert.com. Christians Against Poverty (CAP) is a UK charity with over 580 services across the country delivering debt counselling, money management, job clubs, life skills groups, and support for people breaking life-controlling dependencies. Visit capuk.org to find out more. To make a suggestion for a future topic for this column, please email c.uppenkamp@dartford. h o m e i n stea d . co. u k o r c a l l 01322923750.
LIFE UNDER THE STAIRS
By Local Resident, Jane Stevenson
It’s a new dawn It’s a new day It’s a new life for me And I’m feeling good (Newley/Briscusse) with thanks. Welcome to 2021 people. I reckon we all are hoping for a better one than last year!
from Jersey, Norfolk and the Isle of Wight. Sadly, my rosemary bit the dust. The hollyhocks were a delight but the sunflowers didn’t grow into the giant variety as advertised. The fuchsia were a wonderful success – more to the quality of the plug plants than from my gardening skills. The pond needs a rethink. It’s small and referred to by Younger Offspring as ‘the bucket’, a fitting if impolite description of it. Never mind, I like it. I built a henge in the garden which has become my quiet place when it’s warm enough to sit outside. Nothing too ambitious, and it seems to encourage the bees and butterflies in. Somewhere to sit with a cuppa and contemplate the world. The Estate remains small but manageable, ideal for my advancing years.
What a time that was; here in the UK, Brexit was replaced by Covid. According to the media nothing else of consequence seemed to happen in the world. If only that were true. The virus pushed anything else into the background and left us very insular in our outlook.
If 2020 taught me one thing, it was that to change is difficult but rewarding. I am comfortable with what I know and happily rose to the challenges presented last year. Large plans were scaled back, while new ideas were considered. I stay at home more, entertain more (when permitted) and set achievable goals for the times and my sanity!
survive. Some of us had to retrain, while others took the plunge and opened their own businesses. Our working pattern changed, with many discovering the virtues of working from home. We walked more, enjoyed a warm and dry summer, talked to our neighbours more, made time for family and ourselves. Not necessarily I’m all for new brooms sweeping good for our finances, but a definite I hope that we can go back to some clean, and January seems like a tick for our wellbeing. sort of normality this year. I have a good time to start. I think I need yearning to go back to Kefalonia and to review my own expectations of So what next? There are vaccines on my standby favourite, Benidorm. events. I’m not a fan of resolutions the horizon – not a cure but a step However, with the uncertainty of – mine are all broken by the 2nd forwards. Face masks have become the times perhaps I should explore January anyway, mainly because the norm. Remembering to Social more of this country. I’ve seen so they are unattainable. Give up Distance is awkward. Our learning little of it. chocolate? So small steps forward curve is steep, but we’re getting there. and keeping my eyes on the horizon I ask that 2021 is better for everyone. here’s my take on 2021. Closer to home, important decisions We are older and wiser and time has need to be made regarding the Estate. shown us we are better when working Like many of you, life has changed Potatoes or tomatoes this year? together in our communities. over the past few months. In some Have another go at runner beans? I ways, I think we’ve got a second haven’t grown a decent one for the All the very best wishes for the New chance of making good. Last year past three years. The lavender is Year. See you next month saw some large businesses falter, doing well. I usually buy a plant when yet smaller, local places adapt and away on holiday, so I’ve varieties
SPORTS ROUNDUP Paris St-Germain beat Istanbul Basaksehir (who?) 5 -1 in Paris on 8 December 2020. No big surprise… right? Yes that is right, but the back story will make it a significant date in football’s fight against racism. This is because Paris St-Germain players and Istanbul Basaksehir players had walked off the pitch during their Champions League tie, and the match was abandoned at 0-0 after the fourth official was accused of using a racist term towards Basaksehir assistant Pierre Webo. Former Cameroon international Webo, was shown a red card in an exchange on the touchline and then accused the fourth official of using a racial slur towards him. There were a group of players who walked off in solidarity with each other. Given the importance of the match, in the most watched club competition in the world, taking place in Paris, the significance can’t really be under-written.
UPCOMING EVENTS IN JANUARY INCLUDE: 1 Jan: Darts - Darts World Championship Final, Alexandra Palace, London 18 - 31 (provisional): Tennis - Australian Open, first grand slam of the year, Melbourne, Australia
This is the first time we’ve seen this happen in open play and I think it signifies a marker. Many black players are now saying we may have put up with this in the past and seen things which racialised us unfairly in the past, but now we will take the power we have and use it and walk off, which is within their right.
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WHERE TO GO LOCALLY PARENT AND TODDLER GROUPS - TERM TIME ONLY MONDAYS 9:15am - 11:00am - A&J Toddlers - St Anselms Church Community Centre, Dartford. £2.00 per one adult and child and 50p for any extra children or adults each. Tea/coffee biscuits, small snack for children with juice. Toast 20p per slice Craft table and singing and dancing at end of session Contact Julie on 01322 291092. TUESDAYS Session 1: 9.15-10.45am, and Session 2: 11-12.30pm. Christchurch, Crossroad, Dartford. Contact Catherine on 01322 220036. 9.30am -11.30am. The Salvation Army, 66 Hythe Street, Dartford. Please call us on (01322) 288434 for further information. 9.30am-11.30am Sticky Fingers - £1.50 per adult includes tea ,biscuits and healthy snack time for the children For pre school children up to 4 years St Mary Greenhithe Church Hall London Road Greenhithe Contact 01322 382031 or see www.stmarygreenhithe.com 9:30-10:30am at Fleetdown Utd FC (near Dunelm). £5 per session if you sign up for the term, siblings go free.Contact 07770860450 or Facebook.com/musicandrhymetime WEDNESDAYS 10am -12pm - Little Angels Net Church, (Formerly Gala Bingo Hall) Dartford, £2.50 per family including all snacks and drinks. Catherine 07878658685 11.15am - SLADE GREEN AND HOWBURY COMMUNITY LIBRARY BABY AND TODDLER ACTION RHYME TIME GROUP 12:45pm -2.45pm - Fleetdown Open House - Fleetdown Community Centre, Swaledale Road, Dartford, DA2 6JZ £2.50 per Adult THURSDAYS 9:30am - 11:30am. St Paulinus Church Hall, Manor Road, Crayford. 9.30am-11am Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per Child - £1 Non Walkers - facebook.com/ToeRags 1pm-2.30pm Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per Child - £1 Non Walkers - facebook.com/ToeRags 10:30-11:30am, at Fleetdown Utd FC (near Dunelm). £5 per session if you sign up for the term, siblings go free.Contact 07770860450 or Facebook.com/musicandrhymetime FRIDAYS 9.30am-11am Baby and me for expectant mothers and mothers / carers of chidren up to 2. £1 per adult St Mary Greenhithe Church Hall, London Road Greenhithe. Contact 01322 382031 or see www.stmarygreenhithe.com 9.30am-11am Toerags Toddler Group - Adult education centre, Dartford £3 per Child - £1 Non Walkers facebook.com/ToeRags 9.30am-11.30am Carer & Toddler Group, St Mary’s Church Hall, Stone Place Rd, Greenhithe. Jeanne 01322 380322 jeannehoadley@ yahoo.co.uk 1-3pm Gigglekidz, Tree Estate Community Centre on Cedar Road - £2 Per Child SATURDAYS 9.30am-11.30am Daddy and Me - A group for dads and male carers of children up to 5years. £1.50 includes healthy snack time for the children. St Mary Greenhithe Church Hall, London Road Greenhithe. Contact 01322 382031 or see www.stmarygreenhithe.com 2-3pm - Lego Club- ages 5 and over - Chrome Road Slade Green DA8 2EL Tel: 01322 333602
Toddler Music & Rhyme Sessions at Dartford Libraries - Monday 10:30am - 11am 2:15pm – 2:45pm Friday Thursday 10:30pm -11:00am Story Time Fleetdown - Tuesday 10:30am -11am Greenhithe - Thursday 2.15pm – 2.45pm - Thursday 10:45am -11:15am Longfield Summerhouse - Tuesday 10:30am – 11am Sutton-at-Hone -Monday. 2pm – 2:30pm Temple Hill - Wednesday 10.30am -11am Dartford
Come along and join in the fun! Term time only For more information please call
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FULL 42 WHERE TO GO LOCALLY SECTION WILL BE BACK ONCE WE CAN START TO RETURN TO ‘NORMAL’
DARTFORD PAINTED ROCKS Rock Painting in Dartford.
Local people from Dartford Painted Rocks on Facebook have been busy this month painting
hiding them around town. The rocks can also be exchanged at Stephen Oliver: Studio and By and Maria Kingsford Gallery located in the Orchard Shopping Centre.
Here are some great photos of their painted rocks.
Local people from â€˜Dartford painted rocksâ€™ on Facebook have been busy this month painting and hiding them around the town. The rocks can be exchanged at Stephen Oliver: Studio and Gallery located at the Orchards Shopping Centre . Here are some of the photos of their latest painted rocks.
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Wills LPAs Probate Trusts NOTES Home visits available for Will Instructions Fully insured - 2 million pounds PI Insurance Reasonable fees Gareth Johnson ShouldMember you require any amendments, please indicate them of IPW and Member of Parliament for Dartford regulated by Trading clearly on the copy and return it to usOffice together this open towith help constituents Standards Institute
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CHRISTMAS CLASSIC: CHILDREN RECREATE CHRISTMAS POEM FOR HOSPICE PATIENTS “I really enjoyed doing this it was so much fun. I hope everyone who watches it enjoys it as much as I did, and I wish you all a Merry Christmas” says 10 year old George.
or to share special moments when children and grandchildren open their presents. “The children were worried that the Christmas period would be a difficult and lonely time for some people, and they wanted to spread some joy in these difficult times so with the creative help of my husband Carl and his digital design skills, they have recreated their own version to add some sparkle and festive cheer”.
Parent Gurpreet Jandu says: “Watching our children get ready for their filming for this amazing idea was so lovely to see! It reminded us of happier times but also made us think of those who may be lonely, in this challenging year, over the Christmas period. Knowing that all of the children involved wanted to Local children aged 6 to 11 years friends and sharing special moments wish the patients of ellenor, in their own way, a Merry Christmas, was have come together to make a short together. heart-warming to see”. film based on the classic poem ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’ “With the outbreak of coronavirus in the hope of raising awareness and subsequent lockdowns, for some Linda says: “The children have and funds for ellenor hospice. people, this Christmas will be hard done an amazing job, and here at and a lonely time of the year. Our ellenor, we are immensely grateful B ea u t i f u l i n c reat i v i t y a n d daughter spoke to her friends who for their support . We would also like imagination, this story brings to had heard that ellenor was launching to say thank you to everyone who life the most magical evening of a Christmas appeal to help support continues to support us through the year – full of traditions and adults and children living with a life these exceptional difficult times”. Christmas magic we know and love limiting illness and wanted to give such as hanging stockings by the something back. We began thinking of If you are able to donate to chimney, leaving out a carrot for how we could serve the patients and ellenor’s Christmas appeal please Santa’s reindeer and getting those families we care for - and came up click here www.ellenor.org/donate last gifts wrapped and under the with Twas the Night Before Christmas, #ellenorChristmasappeal. Christmas tree ready for Christmas a poem read on Christmas Eve by morning. many families. This year many of our patients will be unable to meet and Speaking about the idea behind share a Christmas dinner together, the film ellenor’s Director of Care Linda Coffey says: “Christmas is a very exciting time. Our 9-year daughter loves Christmas. It’s a magical time of the year, a time for meeting up with family and
CAR NEWS JANUARY 2021
By Dhiren Ganesh
In this month’s article we look at new electric versions due in 2021 which will expand the SUV range available on the market.
2021 Toyota Yaris Cross – this is the new Toyota Yaris Cross which will be the brand’s smallest and most affordable SUV. As the name suggests this is closely linked to the new Yaris but with its own distinct look. The only engine option is a 1.5-litre petrol that works in conjunction with an electric motor to produce a combined 114bhp. Most small SUVs don’t come with 4-wheel drive but the Yaris Cross will come with this option. It will have its own design on the interior which will include a deep centre console and feature more gloss black plastic such as the air vents and metallic strip. The touchscreen infotainment system will feature Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone mirroring. The pricing has not been set but expected to start from around £21,000 when its available from early in 2021.
2021 Volkswagen ID.4 electric SUV – this is the Volkswagen ID.4, a large electric SUV which can travel up to 323 miles on a single charge.
The smaller ID.3 came out last year as the first in the range and this is the second. There is no conventional front grille and a thin LED light strip that runs across the width of the car, as well as having up to 21 inch alloy wheels. The ID.4 will be able to tow a caravan or trailer weighing up to 1000kg. Powering the ID.4 is a single 201bhp electric motor driving the rear wheels, allowing the car to sprint to 62mph in 8.5sec and on to a limited top speed of 99mph. Power comes from a 99kWh battery, providing the ID.4 with an official range of 323 miles. Inside, the ID.4 does without any buttons on its centre console. Instead, everything is controlled either through touch-sensitive icons or the central infotainment touchscreen. Drivers can connect their smartphones using Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Charging the ID.4 to 80% of capacity takes around 30 minutes using the fastest charging stations. Prices for the ID.4 will start at around £44,000 when its released in late 2021.
versions will be offered here initially the Long range and the performance – with estimated mile ranges of 336 miles and 314 miles respectively. A 15-minute charge at one of Tesla’s third-generation Superchargers is enough for 168 miles of range. All versions feature a panoramic glass roof and a massive 15.0in touchscreen, through which almost everything is controlled. The Model Y has frameless, conventionally opening rear doors and is still available with seven seats. The dashboard design is pretty much identical to that of the Model 3, meaning it’s incredibly minimalist. Prices are expected to be around £52,000 for the Long Range and £60,000 for the Performance when released in late 2021.
2021 Tesla Model Y electric SUV – this is the Model Y is a mid-sized SUV that joins the Model S luxury car, the Model 3 executive saloon and the larger Model X SUV. Two
FROM DESPAIR TO RIGHT UP THERE: DARTS PUSH FOR PROMOTION
Three missed penalties in a playoff final. There canâ€™t be a more disappointing way to end a season but for Dartford boss Steve King, that feeling has become all too familiar.
previous regime. The Darts bade farewell to club legends Ryan Hayes and Lee Noble whilst a whole new set of faces, including England C â€˜keeper Craig King and Grenadian international Ricky Modeste, came through the door at the Bericote King fell to his fourth defeat at that Powerhouse Princes Park. stage in his managerial career, with Weymouth keeping their Despite not being one of the lucky few nerve in the shootout to claim to have fans permitted back into their consecutive promotions, this time home games so far this season, the to the National League. Darts have provided a live streaming Despite a miraculous run of form since he took charge of a club flailing at the wrong end of the table, there was a palpable feeling that this was a huge missed opportunity. There may have also been reason to think there could be a hangover from that result into this season; to lose in such a cruel manner is bound to have taken its toll on the players and King admitted even a month later that defeat still hurt. A huge influx of new signings followed, with King finally able to stamp his full authority on a squad largely inherited from the
service of games online. Those who have tuned in have watched a side who have spent much of the season topping the table although performances have been mixed, with consecutive home defeats against Dorking Wanderers and St Albans City particularly disconcerting. King has stated publicly that fans are yet to see the best of his side although there have been glimpses of what his talented squad are capable of. Jacob Berkeley-Agyepong, re-
signed from Aldershot following a loan spell last season, has stood out for the Darts with his excellent, driving runs from midfield often at the heart of his team’s best football. The departure of last season’s top-scorer Darren McQueen to National League Dagenham & Redbridge has been felt in the forward areas, with Elliott Romain and new signing Jack Barham yet to hit their straps. Alfie Pavey, who scored 22 goals for the club in 2017/18, has rejoined the club on loan until the New Year and will be looking for valuable gametime following a long period out with a broken leg.
supporters watching from afar proud. With much more to come from this team, it looks set to be an exciting few months for Darts fans with dreams of returning to the top tier of Non-League football.
Club’s Hesketh Park, where he would often be found enjoying the cricket in the sun. RIP John.
@HenrWAClark A mention, too, to loyal fan John Hoverd who passed away aged 82 in November. Hoverd had supported Photos: Carol White Griffiths the club since the late 1940’s and photodiva.zenfolio.com had been a shareholder since 1992. An ever-present at not only first-team but ladies and academy fixtures too, his presence will be sorely missed at Princes Park and across the road at Dartford Cricket
Defeat at the qualification stage of the FA Cup at the hands of Slough Town was a significant blow to the club both in terms of performances and finances. However, they soon avenged that result by defeating the same opponents on penalties to progress to the next round of the FA Trophy to be played later in December. Derby fixtures played over the festive period against the likes of Ebbsfleet United will be particularly strange without fans. But King will hope his players, guided by experienced captain Tom Bonner, who has been in excellent form, can put on a performance to make
DARTFORD BORN MASTERCHEF WINNER SHARES HIS WINTER WARMING RECIPES
Dartford born MasterChef winner shares his winter warming recipes including ingredients scientifically proven to keep you warmer for longer Wren Kitchens paired up with Thomas Frake, MasterChef 2020 Champion, to share three delicious recipes that use ingredients proven to keep you warmer for longer The recipes include ingredients scientifically proven to make you feel warmer such as chilli, liver and walnuts Get toasty with a dinner of bonfire baked beans, or warm your belly with sticky banoffee pudding Winter is fast approaching bringing with it longer nights, colder weather and evenings snuggled up under a blanket in the comfort of
your home. But, did you know that rather than turning up your heating a couple of degrees, there are certain foods you can eat that are scientifically proven to help you stay warmer for longer? Itâ€™s true! Certain foods are proven to increase red blood cell count (RBC count) which in turn improves your circulation and contributes to your body temperature. To help you stay warmer this winter, Wren Kitchens have teamed up with Thomas Frake MasterChef 2020 Champion to identify the foods most that are proven to keep you warmer whilst turning these ingredients into three delicious recipes. Three recipes proven to keep you warmer for longer this winter
1 tsp black treacle ½ tsp salt ½ tsp black pepper 1 tbsp rapeseed oil Packed full of smoky, sweet and spicy flavours, this bonfire baked beans recipe elevates the traditionally tinned teatime staple into something delicious and heart-warming. The brown sugar and black treacle add a sweet and sticky depth of flavour, whilst the smoked paprika and ancho chilli flakes add a fiery and smoky kick
200g passata 1 shallot 1 clove of garlic Serves: Two 2 rashers of smoked streaky bacon ½ tsp smoked paprika Time: 45 mins ½ tsp cumin ½ tsp ancho chilli flakes Ingredients 400g (240g drained) tinned cannellini 1 tbsp soft brown sugar 1 tbsp white wine vinegar beans BONFIRE BAKED BEANS
As well as being flavourful, the chilli flakes in this recipe increases the thermic effect of food (TEF), which increases your metabolic rate and makes you feel physically warmer.
CALF’S LIVER, BACON AND ONIONS
Serves: Two Time: 45 mins Ingredients 4 slices of calf liver 3 tbsp flour ½ tsp mild curry power Pinch of salt Pinch of pepper 75g butter 2 tbsp rapeseed oil 4 rashers of smoked bacon 1 white onion 50ml sherry or port 300ml beef stock 1 tsp tomato ketchup 6 fresh sage leaves 2 large baking potatoes 50ml double cream 50g butter Pinch of salt
2 handfuls of spinach 25g butter Hearty, comforting and delicious, this take on liver, bacon and onions is like a warm winter hug in a bowl.
iron, which can work to increase your red blood cell count and warm you up. Serve piled high in a bowl with lashings of gravy for a superb seasonal supper.
Caramelised liver and smoky crisp bacon pair perfectly with rich creamy potatoes and a sweet onion gravy. Like beans, liver is high in
150g butter (softened) 150g dark muscovado sugar 60g walnut pieces 60g caster sugar 2 tbsp water Pinch of salt Sweet and sticky, but light and fluffy, these sticky banoffee puddings warm the soul with steaming hot sponges, a decadent toffee sauce, and crunchy caramelised walnuts. Nuts, like chilli flakes, increase TEF, speeding up your metabolism and consequently warming you up.
Sticky banoffee pudding with 200ml boiling water caramelised walnuts 200g self-raising flour 1 tsp vanilla extract 1 tsp cinnamon Serves: Six 50g (plus extra for greasing) butter Time: 50 mins 2 eggs 150g dark muscovado sugar Ingredients 2 tsp black treacle 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda 100g ripe bananas Â˝ tsp salt 100g pitted dates 150ml double cream
Ripe bananas add an extra caramel sweetness, whilst black treacle and cinnamon add warming winter spices. Serve steaming hot with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream for an indulgent winter dessert. For the full winter warming recipes by Thomas Frake, please go to https://www. wrenkitchens.com/blog/winter-warmerswith-thomas-frake
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