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HAUNTED ESSEX Ghostly Goings On And Spooky Events

WHAT’S ON Event Listings From Ongar To Wanstead

LOCAL NEWS Keeping You Up To Date

FOOD REVIEW A Taster Of Thyme’s New Menu


...a family ticket to Shriek Week at...

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ON THE COVER 8 Local News 12 Haunted Essex 33 Restaurant Review 36 What’s On 41 Competition Win a Family Ticket to Shriek Week

12 33 e

FASHION & BEAUTY 15 Gothic Fashion Trend 17 Dark Days 19 Winter Wedding Beauty Inspiration HEALTH & FITNESS 21 Winter Training 22 Dental Advice

COMMUNITY 6 Your Comments 35 Loughton Foodbank Charity feature Editor: Darren Perry Email: Tel: 01992 283 568 Advertising: advertising@essexcentral Features Editor: Victoria Grace Journalist: Devon-Elizabeth Tabersham & Ben Sneath. Design: Sharon Butler-Felby @SketchDesign, Lauren Brown. Contributors: Victoria Robertson, Amanda Anastasiou, Dean Kramer, Elizabeth Abrahams. Publishers: 3 Blue Worldwide Ltd Facebook: EssexCentralMag Twitter: @EssexCentralMag

46,000 copies distributed to homes, businesses and station locations, along the Essex section of the Central Line and surrounding areas: South Woodford, Woodford, Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Loughton, Debden, Abridge, Theydon Bois, Epping, North Weald, Ongar, Wanstead, Redbridge, Ilford, Gants Hill, Newbury Park, Barkingside, Fairlop, Hainault, Grange Hill. Although every care has been taken to ensure accuracy, 3 Blue Worldwide Ltd take no responsibility for any errors, or the advertisements within this magazine.


HOME & GARDEN 24 Your Dream Kitchen 29 October Gardening Guide TRAVEL 30 Crete Travel Feature FUN & GAMES 40 Puzzle Corner 42 Entering Fatherhood Without a Map


Welcome to the October issue of Essex Central! This month we have featured some of the most ‘haunted’ places in Essex for you to visit this Halloween, and also included some spooky events happening locally. Our fashion pages have taken on a gothic theme and personal trainer Dean Kramer gives his advice on how to stay fit during the coming winter months, we have all our usual features including local news and a bumper events page plus the Dad’s Diary includes an exciting announcement. The featured charity is Loughton Foodbank, who are doing some great work in the local area, providing for many families in need. We also had the pleasure of reviewing Thyme restaurant in Waltham Abbey and urge you to give it a try too, it really was delicious! See you next month!

Darren Perry Editor/Owner

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We love hearing from you!

ach month we trawl through our mailbox and social media sites to see what you are thinking. Here are a few of our favourite messages that we have received recently. Keep your comments coming in for a chance to win £20 if we pick you as our ‘Star Comment’ and £10 for the ‘Reader’s Photo’.



h my, what a lovely article about the deer of Epping Forest! We regularly take walks by the deer sanctuary and any glimpse of them is always welcome. They certainly are majestic creatures and just one example of why our local area is a wonderful place to live. I hope your article interests other people as much as it did myself, especially the younger readers. It is so important to raise awareness of these local animals, well done! Mrs Diane Mitchell

w’ rainbo well le b u er, Chig ‘Do n r u T Jon

Thanks! Do make sure you come by and take a look guys @DeliWoodford Monkey business at @EssexCentralMag this month, with your chance to see a unique safari with mountain gorillas. @AbbottsTravel My gardening guide for September is out now in @EssexCentralMag don’t forget to keep deadheading your #dahlias @gardeningbyvr


Thank you for sharing our event. We had a great turn out and raised lots of cash for our charity! Simone Prior Unfortunately I don’t live in an area that gets Essex Central but I love reading it online. Is it possible to email it to me each month so that I don’t miss it? Leah Travis Congratulations to Lyndsey Jones (right) from Woodford who was the winner of The Bluebell Tasting Menu competition.


Gotta love Monday! NOT @railwaybellpub


Address: Essex Central Magazine, Brickfield Business Centre, High Road, Thornwood, Epping, Essex CM16 6TH @EssexCentralMag EssexCentralMag editor@essexcentral



A short roundup of what’s been going on

WORK EXPERIENCE AT THE RITZ Two West Hatch High School students have recounted their work experience placement with a difference - after enjoying a two-week stint at The Ritz Hotel in London. Taking on the occasional role of bell boys, Danny Ballard and Red Walker undertook various roles, including carrying guests’ luggage and meeting with clients. Year 11 student Danny said: “I did many things during the two weeks such as going on jobs in central London and carrying out tasks in the hotel. “The Ritz is such a nice hotel and has a lovely team. I give special thanks to Michael De Cozar (head concierge) for such an experience and taking care of me.” Year 11 student Red Walker spent time working alongside the head concierge shadowing him at meetings.

Red added: “I was asked to perform a number of duties from posting letters to rooms to ordering expensive cakes, and the most important job - helping people with their luggage!” He added: “I enjoyed my time at The Ritz. The staff were very caring.”

Red Walker Danny Ballard (left) and Hotel, London z Rit The at y’ dut ‘on



Buckhurst Hill Parish Council is screening two films at its next Community Cinema. ‘The Land Before Time’, a 1988 AmericanIrish animated adventure drama film, will be shown at Roding Valley Hall, Station Way, Buckhurst Hill, at 2.30pm on Saturday, October 17. The film features dinosaurs living in the prehistoric times. At 8pm there will be a screening of the 1996 American black comedy crime thriller Fargo. Admission to both screenings is free to local residents but tickets must be booked in advance. Donations for the Alzheimers Society will be gratefully received. Snacks and refreshments will be available to purchase. To reserve tickets, ring the parish council on 020 8498 9933 or email film@buckhursthillpc.


As the Epping restaurant approaches its first birthday we caught up with the owner Sharmila to see how the first year has gone and the plans for the future. “We’ve loved giving the people of Epping a taste of traditional authentic Italian food with our rustic meals and we are delighted with the feedback so far. We are now changing the opening hours and will open from 11:30am until 11:30 pm, 7 days a week. By moving away from the breakfasts this helps us focus more on the lunches and dinners that our customers want”. Inside the cosy two floor venue you immediately feel the warmth of the traditional wood fired oven at the back and the intimate setting gives you a feeling of leaving the high street and stepping into a beautiful Bistro nestled in the heart of the Italian countryside. The food is incredibly good value and Sharmila explains the new offers, “We’re offering lunch time pizzas and pastas for just £5.95, or £7.95 with a drink, ideal for locals to either eat in or take away, and of course all of our pizzas are freshly cooked in the wood oven by our head chef who has over 15 years experience cooking authentic Italian food.” 168 High Street, Epping, Essex CM16 4AQ Tel: 01992 572 995


Ensuring the services provided by St Clare Hospice are “beacons of specialist, person-centred care” is the mission of our new Director of Patient Care. Philip Ball joins the Hastingwood-based hospice from Sue Ryder’s Clinical Quality Team, having run the charity’s Thorpe Hall Hospice in Peterborough since 2009. Having previously worked in the retail and catering industries, Philip embarked upon a career in healthcare in 1978 after a friend at work said she thought he would make a good nurse. “I trained in Edgware and almost immediately recognised working with those nearing the end of life was what I wanted to do,” he said. “With a view to working in a hospice at some point, I began my nursing in general hospitals, including Edgware, Milton Keynes and the Luton and Dunstable, until eventually the opportunity arose to join a hospice team, moving to Willen Hospice in Milton Keynes in 1991. “Since then I have worked in almost every role, from staff nurse to Inpatient Unit manager, as well as setting up a hospital palliative care team at Northampton General Hospital in 1993.” The married dad-of-two, who is a special advisor to the Care Quality Commission, said he believes enabling those in our care to flourish even as their lives are coming to a close is at the heart of the role St Clare plays in the journey faced by those with a terminal or life-limiting illness. “The challenges we face are about being ready to embrace opportunities, and recognising how transferable our specialist skills and knowledge

are,” he said. “In future, St Clare will be heading towards a bigger role in the wider community and we will need to continue our efforts to reach those who need support in places that are familiar and safe to them.” Philip joins St Clare following the departure of his predecessor Beth Burton, who has taken a post as the manager of a nursing home in Shenfield where she will be using her clinical expertise to set up a nursing wing specially for palliative patients.

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With over 14,000 listed buildings and connections with some of the bloodiest episodes of British history, could Essex officially be the UK epicentre for all things spectral?

Hedingham Castle


rom Boudicca battling the Romans to Wat Tyler and the Peasants’ Revolt, the bloody lives of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I to the murderous Witchfinder General Matthew Hopkins and so many more, Essex is a county rich in gory, fascinating history and legend. And when better to explore this exciting heritage and re-tell the tales of the past than Halloween? Nearly 900 years of history are etched into the stones of Hedingham Castle, with the Norman keep home to several ghosts. Queen Elizabeth I was actually a guest at Hedingham Castle and she famously rallied her troops at Tilbury



Fort, as they prepared for the arrival of the Spanish Armada in 1588. Her ghost is said to appear there but it is nearby Coalhouse Fort that is said to be even more haunted and every bit as fascinating. Eerie voices, the laughter of children and the sound of heavy objects being dragged have been reported there. Even the name, Mistley Towers, has a gothic ring to it. The twin towers themselves are all that is left of a Georgian church, surrounded by gravestones. Just over a century before they were built, the bloody reign of terror of self-styled ‘Witch Finder General’, Matthew Hopkins rampaged across England, but was centred in nearby Manningtree. It is

Borley Rectory

thought Hopkins and his assistant ‘Witch Pricker, John Sterne’ sent up to 400 souls to their deaths - 19 of whom were hung at Chelmsford in a single day. Hopkins retired to Manningtree and died there. The man whom proclaimed to have “The Devil’s own list of all the witches of England” was buried at Mistley Heath and his spectre is said to appear at full moon by the village pond, a scene of several of his witch trials. Britain’s oldest recorded town, Colchester, naturally has a wealth of tales - real or imagined - of spirits that haven’t managed to pass over to the other side. Colchester Castle is an ideal starting place

Spooky Events If you’re not feeling brave enough for visiting Essex’s most haunted venues this Halloween then try these family friendly local events.


Saturday 24th Sunday 1st November Halloween gets horribly spooky on the Secret Island during Autumn Half ls Term week Royal Gunpowder Mil when Dr Gore takes to the Mad Lab for a gruesome series of experiments. An array of frightfully fantastic activities will be available for all ages. Try hat and mask making to transform yourself into a witch, monster or other spooky character for the day. Be prepared to get messy with some ooey-gooey monster slime making, freaky monster skin, and make gruesome discoveries in the feely boxes.


Mistley Towers

to let your imagination run as wild as a Banshee’s hair. It is Europe’s largest Norman keep and was built on the foundations of the Roman Temple of Claudius. The apparition of a cat is said to haunt the grounds; dead felines were often interred by Romans in the foundations of their buildings for luck. More dramatically, there is the sad story of James Parnell. He was a Quaker imprisoned for his beliefs and died in the castle’s prison in 1656. Legend has it that every time he wished to eat, his captors would make him climb a rope. One day, too weak to hang on, the 20-year old fell to his death and haunts the dungeon to this day. The village of Canewdon is known

Friday 30th Saturday 31st October Visit the Epping Ongar Railway Colchester Castle this Halloween for their as ‘The Village where spooktacular Witchfinders feared event that to tread,’ has literally dozens of ghost stories Epping Ongar Railway is back by popular and most of them demand. The heritage trains centre on the church. Legend has it will be decorated in true if you run anti-clockwise round it on Halloween style. There will Halloween, the Devil will appear. be treats for all the kids, a And of course, no self-respecting fancy dress competition and ghost hunter could possibly great entertainment consider visiting Essex without on board. Be braving a trip to the site of widely prepared to proclaimed ‘Most Haunted House be scared on in England’, Borley Rectory. The Victorian mansion was destroyed by this unique full-size Ghost a fire in 1938 and later demolished Train. Advanced but its reputation lives on. booking is essential. Find out more at


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Darker days are upon us, and with darker days come darker palettes. This autumn, embrace your inner Goth and welcome deeper and richer hues of blues, burgundies and reds into your new-season wardrobe. Abandon thoughts of all the things you thought you D knew about the Goth trend; sumptuous velvet, smooth un e suede and luxurious leather are the key textiles for this season and are an easy route of incorporating the trend into your day-to-day ensembles.

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Top 5 make-up trends for winter brides.


It’s always attractive to see a super pretty kissable pout, especially when all eyes are on you. Rosebud lips give a natural but enticing look with subtle nude and dusty pink hues. Apply one coat, and then dust on some pressed powder in the centre to slightly highlight the colour. You can also add gloss to the centre only to give an extra pouty look. For a truly classic bridal look, a rose pout with minimal eye makeup and tousled hair is on point.



I know what you are thinking, my wedding day is not the day to start acting super trendy and trying out new looks, however, if you want to be brave and ‘wow’ your guests with something sparkly this time of year then give metallic a go. You can keep your make up plain but add a metallic lip or eye to jazz up your look. I would suggest having your hair up with this look so you can really sparkle and the focus can be on your make-up.


Feline flicks are a massive trend on catwalks this season. You could say they are classic but definitely not dated, you get a slick look that comes back into fashion time and time again. If you want to add a little sass to your wedding look, this is the way to go. Team up with some false eyelashes to go with your cat eye, this ensures your eye make-up looks fresh all day. Make sure you hire a make-up artist or someone who knows what they are doing - there’s nothing worse than wonky false lashes!

Although you’re a low key kind of lady that doesn’t mean that it’s taken your make-up artist 10 minutes to achieve this low key look. A light shadow is sometimes all you need to brighten the eyes but for most brides the most important part is

to have completely flawless skin, which can take a while to achieve. If you have dry skin, the winter will only make it worse so a couple of months before the big day, keep your skin hydrated and moisturise twice a day. If you don’t wear much make-up every day, your wedding day is not the time to pile it on. Just make sure your skin is flawless and your lips are nude but hydrated. You also may want to invest in semi permanent lashes for definition.


I absolutely love this old Hollywood beauty vibe. The tumbling curls, the red stained lips and the voluminous lashes - it’s a look that’ll stand the test of time. Get in tune with the season’s colours around you. Deep, dark berry reds look beautiful in a snowy setting. Team with a low-side parting hair do for maximum glamour and the great thing about this look is it goes wonderfully with paler skin tones so ditch that fake tan! By Amanda Anastasiou If you would like to have your hair, nails or make up done by Amanda, please visit www. Amanda Anastasi ou


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TRAINING A change of season doesn’t mean you can’t keep fit!


inter is coming which brings darker mornings, dark evenings and a change of weather. During this time a lot of people might start to drop off doing exercise, but exercise should be taken all year not just a seasonal thing. Especially if you’ve got an event planned next year, for example the London Marathon which lets people know if they have a place in October, you have to train throughout the winter to make sure you can safely run the distance the following year. We all know the health benefits from doing physical activity - lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol, helps improve mental health are just a few of the key benefits. So why should we work hard for half the year then stop and go back to the start? If you keep up exercising during the winter period where we all eat way too much and pig out, then at the start the New Year when everyone plans their resolution goals to lose weight or fit into that

pair of skinny jeans you would already be there or nearly there. There are many ways we can still stay fit and healthy during winter, and I strongly encourage it. Here are a few suggestions: H Hire a personal trainer like myself who specialises in different areas of fitness such as HIIT Training, Weight/Fat Loss, Toning and Sports Specific training. I have my own equipment and I can train you in your own home, outdoors, one on one or with a friend. I can also offer nutritional advice to supplement your training. H Try different classes or activities at your gym or local leisure centre. They are a great way to meet new people, so try something new and keep yourself motivated. H Find a local running club or get a group of people together to run, check out Run England website for local clubs. H Join a local gym, some of them start to put out offers for winter or if not buy some home gym equipment to do some workouts at home.

H Short for time? How about doing a home circuit or some HIIT training? Home circuits could be something as simple as 10 push ups, 10 squats, 10 crunches, 10 mountain climbers, 10 jumping jacks, 10 lunges then increase the number as you go along or set it as 1 minute for each exercise, rest for 30 seconds and do the circuit 3 times. As for HIIT Training, it’s short bursts of speed workouts with minimal active recovery/rest. For example, 45 seconds intense work with 15 seconds rest/active recovery. A rule of thumb is that one minute of vigorous activity provides the same health benefits as two minutes of moderate activity. By Dean Kramer Personal Trainer www.dean Tel: 07447 931788 Dean Kramer




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2 St Johns Road, Epping CM16 5DN

Reception: 01992 574 004 Out of Hours: 01922 800 947






Thinking of buying a Kitchen? Think wisely, there are so many things to consider.


Starting with a budget in mind would help you and your kitchen designer to create a kitchen that suits your purse. Buying quality is key. Well-made kitchens will always look good and last.


Think about what you want to do in the Kitchen. Do you want to use it as a family room, just for cooking, or maybe you want one that has the wow factor? Or even all of the above! This information helps the kitchen designers to advise you on the best kitchens and appliances that would suit your needs. If you have animals and/or small children take that into


consideration also: scratches, paws and small hand marks mean a Hi-gloss kitchen may not be the answer - a painted kitchen would suit better. Installing mod-cons can make life easier. For example a hot water tap - some people can’t live without them now. Make tea from the tap - what’s happening to the world!


The Shaker style kitchen never dates and the good thing about kitchens nowadays is you can get painted ones that you can decorate yourself if you want to change colour at a later date, but remember it’s all about quality because quality will last the test of time.



Real wood island with contrasting granite worktop on units

Shaker style kitchen

Corner carousel unit

Handless kitchens are on trend at the moment giving you a sleek contemporary look and curved units are also in style and give a wow factor to any kitchen. Led lighting brings any kitchen to life. Strip lights along a handless kitchen looks fantastic. Plinth lights look great too and glass splash backs are so in at the moment reflecting the light it brings the whole room to life, it’s all about the lighting! Quartz worktops are still a favourite and you can choose from so many different colours and beautiful under-mounted sinks in a variety of colours look stunning, they are easy to clean and look no splash marks!

larder is the ideal solution for any modern fitted kitchen. All your groceries are easily seen and can be accessed from both sides so you never forgot anything being left in the back of the cupboard. A swivel larder unit has all the advantages of the pull out larder but the swing out larder glides out and swings 90 degrees left or right giving even better access. Make sure you include units that allow for storage of taller items also. You could think about having extra tall wall units which go to the ceiling, this will do two things - create more space and lose the wasted space above wall units that normally collects dust!

COLOUR Choosing two different colours, for example deep colours on the base units and lighter colours on wall and tall units can create a beautiful modern look. Islands can be colour co-ordinated too. Also choosing a real wood worktop on the island area only and having quartz or granite on the units looks stunning. Matching your worktop colours with flooring will look like you have employed an interior designer.



Make the best out of storage space that sometimes goes unused. A cantilever corner carousel eliminates unnecessary lifting, bending or reaching. A pull out

When investing in a new kitchen it is important to choose a supplier who can manage the project from start to finish, from the design process right through to fitting. Harrisons Kitchens is a family run business with 30 years experience in the kitchen industry and can work with you throughout your experience, giving advice and support to create your dream kitchen. It’s all about making your kitchen stand out from the rest. It’s your individual choices that make a difference. Speak to a consultant at Harrisons Kitchens for ideas. Harrisons Kitchens, 21 Highbridge Street, Waltham Abbey, EN9 1BZ. Tel: 01992 760 500


140 Hermon Hill, South Woodford, London, E18 1QH

621 Garra� Lane, Wandsworth, London, SW18 4SX

Phone: 0208 530 7555 Fax: 0208 530 8844

Phone: 0208 944 2001

Bathroom sales starts 26th Sept un�l 1st Novemenber FREEPHONE 0800 055 6450

Fitting Service 26 

ReUse Centre in Hainault Essex, over two floors stocks lots of preloved goods waiting to be re-homed. Our warehouse stocks the following:

• Beds • Mattresses • Mirrors • Pictures • Household goods • Bikes • Books children/adults • Clothes children/adults • Golf clubs/Balls • Bric a Brac and many other treasures

• Sofas • Dining Table and Chairs • Coffee Tables • Nest of tables THE • Dressing tables NUMBER 1 • Side cabinets STORE FOR • Wall cabinets LANDLORDS • Display cabinets • Book cases • Wardrobes • Wooden and Metal bed frames • DVD'S / CD'S & Records

Come and pay us a visit to pick up all your goods today. We also offer a delivery service where our on-site drivers will deliver all heavy goods straight to your front door. Open Mon - Sat 9.30am - 5pm Free Parking

Call us today 020 7998 9380

Unit E, The Acorn Centre, 29 Roebuck Road, Hainault, Essex. IG6 3TU (Off Fowler Rd)

Please ask about our FREE house clearance service


RJS Lofts is a family-run, well-established company with years of experience and knowledge, specialising in the construction of loft conversions and home extensions.

We also undertake: home structural changes space conversions staircasing plastering flooring interior adjustments & decorations

Visit our website for more info or call us to discuss your requirements



07875 599762 020 3536 3319


“The autumn colourful displays will mainly come from leaves.”




GARDENING Epping Forest

on Victoria Roberts


Moles are small mammals which live underground and dig a network of tunnels through the soil. They feed on insects, worms and other small invertebrates. Look out for mole hills - fresh upturned soil on your lawn or within your borders. Moles can be deterred by the unpleasant smell of moth balls which can be pushed into the mole tunnels.


A seasonal guide to help you get the most out of your garden.

his month you will begin to see some spectacular transformation in gardens, woodlands and hedgerows. There will still be some warm bright days ahead for us although the mornings are usually quite cold and crisp. The autumn colourful displays will mainly come from leaves. The greens, orange, red, purple, and yellow ones will really help to brighten up even the dullest of days. Horse chestnut trees last remaining conkers will now drop to the ground, sloes will begin to stand out prominently on their spikey branches of the blackthorn, apples are now ready to harvest and many people will be enjoying pumpkin carving too. In flower this month is

the wonderful perennial wallflower, Erysimum ‘Bowles Mauve’, which is everybody’s favourite. Chinese Lantern Physalis alkekengi warm up borders and pots with a red and orange glow. Now is the time to begin

Chinese Lantern Physalis alkekengi

regularly raking off any leaf matter from your lawn if you have one. This will also help to break up any thatch that you may have too. If you have a pond keep it free from leaves! This will help prevent it

turning too acidic and will help to stop the growth of algae in spring. Once you have removed any dead plant material and fallen leaves you should place them in a heap by the pond for a few hours so any wildlife can return to your pond. After cleaning why not place a net over the pond that will help collect the leaves. Create a colourful entrance outside your front door by planting up pots and winter hanging baskets. Choose plants such as heathers, pansies, primroses, dwarf conifers and dwarf hebes. By amenity horticulturalist & gardening committee member of Copped Hall & Epping Horticultural Society & Chairman of Epping in Bloom, Victoria Robertson


Magpies are a large garden bird that will often scare away other garden birds and will dominate bird tables. The main garden damage is done to the lawn where they usually create holes while looking for worms. It is impossible to keep magpies out of the garden but to give other garden birds a chance to feed, especially throughout the winter months, put up more hanging bird feeders.





This month Abbotts Travel have teamed up with GP Associates, who represent some of the world’s best destinations, and provide expert advice on crafting the perfect holiday.


here better than the largest of the Greek islands - a place of unique fascination, fuelling painters, poets, warrior and thinkers. They were inspired by the magnificent scenery and distinctive character of its people. Their legacy is unrivalled and it seeps into the stone of the Minoan palaces, Byzantine churches and Venetian castles. Crete’s landscape is a combination of rugged mountains, flowery meadows, vineyards, orange groves, forgotten ruins and isolated chapels. But wherever you wander, you will always be in sight of the gleaming blue sea with its lovely beaches, bays and charming fishing villages. Being the most southerly outpost of Europe, Crete has a mild and exceptionally dry climate with a prevailing northerly wind, the “meltemi”, which brings a cool breeze on those warm summer days. Abbotts’ three chosen properties - Elounda Mare, Porto Elounda and Elounda Peninsula - are owned by the same family and situated in the Aghios Nikolaos region. This is on the north east coast of the island overlooking the beautiful Bay of Mirabello. A glorious sandy beach sits on the doorstep, with shops, bars and restaurants just 2 km away in the village of Elounda.


The Elounda Mare hotel was the first hotel entirely owned by the Family of Spyros and Eliana Kokotos, which opened in 1982, at a time when they already had three children: Fotis, Elias, and Marina. It was the first hotel in the

Mediterranean that had private pools at each and every one of its numerous bungalows, a concept that soon became somewhat of a norm for top-class resorts. Maintaining its character of a traditional hospitality establishment of the most cultured kind, the Elounda Mare Hotel encompasses all the distinctive elements that allowed it to become the first Greek hotel to enter the prestigious association of Relais & Chateaux in 1987: charm, calm, character, cuisine and courtesy - the now famous “5 Cs”.


The Porto Elounda Golf & Spa Resort was the second hotel that the Kokotos family developed in Elounda, encompassing some of the latest trends to emerge in the international luxury market, and including the first golf course on the island of Crete, as well as the first hotel building in the Mediterranean with long shared pools for its rooms. An ideal resort for families, children are greeted warmly with a welcome gift on arrival and the connecting rooms and suites are well appointed and all have stunning sea views. Porto Elounda has an excellent children’s club - the ‘Kid’s Ark’, two children’s pools, and a wide range of activities including acting, cooking, games and garden cultivation all designed to give the children an insight into the Greek culture. Children will love the return of the Arsenal Soccer School Camp at Porto Elounda and there is a dance school. From this year, the multi-awarded Six Senses Spa will have a ‘junior-make-up’ day, a

‘healthy-hand and foot-tips’ day for girls over 13, and a ‘Yoga for mother and child’ session. Children from all properties can also participate in the following activity lessons: Tennis, swimming, golf, wakeboarding, water-skiing, sailing, scuba diving and fishing (extra charges apply).


Opening in 2002, the Elounda Peninsula is the most exclusive of the three, offering the largest private-pool seafront suites in the entire country, and having its own range of dedicated facilities for its very special clientele: a beautiful spa with pool, sauna, and authentic hammam, a unique cinema theatre, a fully-stocked wine cellar, the awardwinning Calypso gourmet restaurant, and the amazing Serenes’ Bar right on the water’s edge. One of the most important additions is the stunning Six Senses Spa, a facility so special that it was immediately recognised by the Sunday Times’ TRAVEL magazine as the “World’s Best Spa” The Elounda S.A hotels & resorts stage a variety of dining experiences across seven restaurants, and guests can enjoy a ‘Dine Around’ scheme in conjunction with its neighbouring sister hotels. For further details on these recommended properties or the island itself, please contact Abbotts Travel. Abbotts Travel, 134 George Lane, South Woodford, E18 1BA. Tel: 0208 989 9445 www.abbotts


117 High Rd Chigwell, Essex, IG7 6QQ TEL: 020 8500 6282

6 Course Chef’s Tasting Menu – Half Price for Essex Central Readers –

Usually £55 per person, but just £27.50 per person with this advert throughout October 2015. Mention special offer at time of booking. Tuesday-Thursday Only

If you’ve not yet been to the Bluebell, then NOW is the time! “The food was incredible” “What a lovely venue” “Great value for money” “Always a brilliant experience”





Butterflied Garlic Prawns

Soy Braised Pork Cheeks


s we entered the Marriott Hotel in Waltham Abbey we were unsure what to expect from a ‘hotel restaurant’ as they can be very hit and miss. However, as soon as we saw the creative menu at ‘Thyme’ we knew this was going to be special, and so it proved to be. Before we get to the food, a quick note on the décor which was very modern, comfortable and spacious with an open kitchen for added entertainment during the meal. We browsed the new menu and decided for starters to have the Tea Smoked Gressingham Duck with salt and pepper pineapple and rhubarb ketchup, (I said it was creative!) whilst my companion plumped for the Butterflied Garlic Prawns. My dish tasted superb and was presented immaculately, the salt and pepper gave a mouth-watering contrast to the juicy sweet pineapple, and that’s just the base. On top sat the duck which was tender, pink and full of flavour, the whole dish was fantastic.

Chocolate Fudge Brownie

The Garlic Prawns looked delicious and was very well cooked and not over powered with the garlic, giving a delicate balance in order to keep the full flavour of the prawns. For the mains my partner enjoyed Soy Braised Pork Cheeks with coconut and ginger rice, whilst I had the Yorkshire Wagyu Beef Burger with cheddar cheese and hand cut chips. The pork was rich with juicy flavours of soy and seasoning, soft to bite and could be lightly torn apart with the fork without any need to ‘cut’ such was the tenderness. If you like your burgers with a bite then don’t go for Wagyu as it’s served rare and soft but was still very good and made even better with the lovely brioche bun, plus the accompanying thick chips were first class. For desert we opted for Whole Orange and Almond Syrup Cake with Pistachio ice cream, along with my order of a Chocolate Fudge Brownie that came with espresso syrup and mascarpone. For me, my dessert was the best dish of the day - it was heavy,

stodgy, sweet and just fantastic. The bites of brownie revealed where your teeth marks had been, such was the rich thickness of the dish and each mouthful contained chunky nut bites. The orange cake was much lighter, it was fluffy in the middle, well toasted on top, gentle enough to let the syrup seep inside and all lifted further by the almond ice cream (yet another creative course). All in all we were thoroughly impressed by the food at Thyme and will certainly be heading back. Little touches throughout the meal (like the accompanying miniature glass jars of condiments) were very nice, but for me it was the creativity that really stood out, I felt we were eating food that just wouldn’t be served elsewhere, and that’s what sets this restaurant apart. Hats off to the new menu, and we look forward to trying the rest of their marvellous creations very soon. Thyme, Old Shire Lane, Waltham Abbey EN9 3LX Tel: 01992 704472





Extensions • New Build • Gas & Electricity works Conversions • Renovations • Pipework & Plumbing Contact us and speak to Ian or Sherif:

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Unique Office Solutions Ltd Solutions House 56-58 Peregrine Road Hainault , Essex IG6 3SZ Facebook “f ” Logo

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Facebook “f ” Logo

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Are you moving? Are you refurbishing? Do you need to get more staff in your office?

Call us now on 0208 500 2121 for a free consultation 34 




FOODBANK Emergency food for local people in crisis

eather set up Loughton Foodbank in 2013 after an independent foodbank moved out of the area. She knew how to establish one after working as a volunteer at the nearby Redbridge Foodbank for a year and support given by the Trussell Trust. She experienced the amazing work they do by giving food and support to local people in crisis who had been referred by front line care professionals. Realising that there now wasn’t a foodbank in the Loughton area, she started investigating how it would run and where it would be based. Immediately she got support from two church leaders. Both churches, Restore Community Church and St Mary’s where she attends, are food distribution centres. The charity was given a startup grant from Loughton Town Council and is funded by generous monetary donations and other smaller grants. With this money

“Over 1000 local people in Epping Forest have received an emergency food parcel.”

Loughton Foodbank has acquired necessary equipment for its warehouse space - where all the donated food is stored, food items in short supply and resources for clients to take away. Additionally there is a website, Facebook and Twitter page to promote the charity. Heather project manages the Foodbank along with a small management team and is busy coordinating a team of volunteers to organise food donations, the warehouse and two collection days every week.

By Ben Sneath

Much of the food donations are made by businesses, schools, uniformed organisations, churches and generous individuals. Recently, Tesco customers were encouraged to buy an extra item and to give to the Foodbank as a donation during the sixth Neighbourhood Collection. Frontline Care professionals such as Doctors and care workers decide whether someone is in crisis and in need of emergency food. They complete a foodbank voucher which the individual redeems for 3 days of nutritionally balanced food. Reasons for referrals include benefit delays, low income and debt. Over 1000 local people in Epping Forest have received an emergency food parcel since the Foodbank opened. One of the current aims of the charity is to expand its storage

capabilities by getting a bigger warehouse, and to operate in new areas outside of Loughton. Heather has seen that Epping Forest has a great need for a Foodbank and is looking for any volunteers who would like to help support the community by way of volunteering for the Foodbank, any charitable local businesses who could donate storage space or equipment and care professionals who would like to become voucher holders. So if you are any of these get in touch! volunteer@loughton.foodbank. @Loughton_FBank



WHEN: Saturday 3rd - Friday 30th October WHAT: Loughton Camera Club Annual Exhibition - Photographic prints and digital images. Open normal library hours. Admission free. WHERE: Loughton Library, Traps Hill WHEN: Sunday 4th October, 10.30am-4.30pm WHAT: Indoor Art and Craft Fair Quality arts and crafts by local people. Free entry and free parking. Seated area with light refreshments on sale. WHERE: Chigwell Riding Trust for Special Needs, Grange Farm, off High Road, Chigwell

WHEN: Saturday 10th October, 10am-noon WHAT: Theydon Bois Pre-School nearly new sale - New and nearly new items for sale including children’s clothes, baby equipment, toys. Sellers’ enquiries; WHERE: The Scout Hut, Loughton Lane, Theydon Bois WHEN: Saturday 10th October, 1pm-5pm WHAT: Suntrap Forest Education Centre Annual Open Day - Meet the animals, pond dip, peer down microscopes, have a go on the low ropes course, enjoy craft activities, stroll through the forest on a guided walk, look at exhibitions or enjoy some light refreshments. Free entry with a small charge for some activities. Parking £3 (free shuttle bus from Chingford Station).


Visitwww.suntrapcentre.weebly. com for more information. WHERE: Suntrap Forest Education Centre, Church Road, High Beach

WHEN: Sunday 11th October, 11am-4pm WHAT: Apple Day - Apple Day is a national annual celebration of apple orchards and local distinctiveness. Join in the fun, play some traditional games, help with the juicing and have your own apples identified by our expert. Apple display and apples for sale. Entertainment, refreshments and bar, lunches, produce for sale and the Trust shop. Entry £8 per person. Access to gardens and mansion (room stewards). WHERE: Copped Hall, Epping WHEN: Sunday 11th October, 5.30pm WHAT: Vintage Film Night - Death on the Nile - In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the creation of the London Boroughs earlier this year, Valentines Mansion is delighted to invite you to a screening of Death on the Nile, featuring one of Redbridge s former residents and acclaimed actresses, Maggie Smith. The library Bar will be open during the evening. Film classification PG Tickets: £8 per person (includes a serving of popcorn). Pre-booking essential on 020 8708 8100.

WHERE: Valentines Mansion & Gardens, Emerson Road, Ilford WHEN: Monday 12th October, 1.45pm WHAT: West Essex Flower Club - David Wright will be at West Essex Flower Club this month with his flower demonstration entitled “Saturday Night at the Movies”. There will also be an Autumn Plant Sale. Come along to this friendly club, everybody welcome. Visitors pay £4.50 on the door. WHERE: Thornwood Village Hall, Weald Hall Lane WHEN: Wednesday 14th October, 10am for 10.30am start WHAT: Theydon Bois Friends of Cancer Research UK Bridge Drive - Coffee and biscuits will be served, sandwiches & glass of wine. Tickets £15 from Sheila Tel: 01992 573319 or email: WHERE: Theydon Bois Village Hall WHEN: Wednesday 14th October, 2.30pm WHAT: The History of Chingford - An illustrated talk by Morna Daniels. £3 for non-members of the National Trust Woodford Green Centre. Refreshments available. For enquiries call 020 8508 9541. WHERE: All Saints Church, Inmans Row, Woodford WHEN: Friday 16th October, 9am-11.30pm WHAT: St Clare Hospice Corporate Golf Day - 18 holes on the par-72 championship course starting with breakfast. Prizes for the first and second-placed teams as well as best individual golfer, nearest the pin and longest drive, plus the chance to win a car for a hole in one.


The golf will be followed by a twocourse dinner, prize-giving and charity raffle and auction. The competition is open to teams of up to four players. Registration costs £340 per team. For more details ring Heather Cameron on 01279 773753 or email heather. WHERE: Abridge Golf Club, Epping Lane WHEN: Thursday 22nd October, 10am - 2.30pm WHAT: Fairlop Lake Island Clearance - We’ll be cutting and clearing vegetation from the lake island to improve the habitat for ground nesting birds. Wellies recommended. Will involve a short boat ride. WHERE: Meet at Fairlop Outdoor Activity Centre car park, Forest Road, Ilford IG6 3HN

WHEN: Tuesday 27th October, 10am - 2.30pm WHAT: Duck House Making Come and lend a hand to help us to make some duck houses, giving the wildfowl of South Park protection over the coming season! Meet at The Wildlife Centre inside the park, beside the gate and adjacent to the bandstand. Use South Park entrance on the junction of South Park Road and South Park Crescent. WHERE: South Park, South Park Road, Ilford

in the dead of the night. Be prepared for a spine chillingly exciting evening. Strictly 18 yrs+, £44 per person includes light refreshments. Tickets at www.the-pigs. or by calling 020 8708 8100. WHERE: Valentines Mansion & Gardens, Emerson Road, Ilford WHEN: Saturday 31st October, 12noon - 3pm WHAT: Redbridge Youth Bake Off - Our annual Youth Bake Off is back and this year will have

WHEN: Thursday 29th October, 10.30am WHAT: West Essex Ramblers Walk - Explore Wanstead Park and its surroundings, meet the group outside Wanstead Station for a five-mile circular walk. For more details, ring 020 8502 1628. WHERE: Meet at Wanstead Station

WHEN: Thursday 22nd Saturday 24th October, 8pm WHAT: Yes Prime Minister – a comedy by Antony Jay and Jonathan Lynn, writers of the original television series Yes Minister and Yes Prime Minister. The UK is in crisis, debt is spiralling, unemployment is on the rise, and the fragile coalition cabinet, led by Prime Minister Jim Hacker, is at breaking point. However, salvation may exist in the form of a deal with the oil-rich country of Kumranistan, but, all is not straightforward. Tickets - £8.50 from Mr and Mrs James - 01992 812250. WHERE: Theydon Bois Village Hall, Coppice Row, Theydon Bois CM16 7ER

WHEN: Friday 30th October, 6pm - 9pm WHAT: Spooky Halloween Lantern Walk - Blood trail to follow, spooky stories, monstors and a zombie zone. Meeting location and information will be sent on confirmation of booking. Children under 16 must be accompanied by a responsible adult. To book email tonychadwick@ WHERE: Hainault Forest Country Park

WHEN: Saturday 24th October, 7pm for a 7:30 start WHAT: 1940s Dance - Come and join Treble Trouble and the Bass Cleffs for a 1940s Dance in aid of The British Legion with great music, a fully licensed bar, vintage craft stalls and raffle! Tickets £10, contact: 07941 389232. WHERE: North Weald Village Hall, High Road CM16 6BU

WHEN: Saturday 31st October, 8pm-3am WHAT: Paranormal Halloween Special - Are you brave enough to take part in a real paranormal investigation on the spookiest night of the year? Join the Paranormal Investigation Gathering Service, attempting to find and record paranormal activity within Valentines Mansion

a spooky theme to celebrate Halloween. Bring along your home made creepy cupcakes, terrifying tarts, beastly brownies... The best bake will be crowned Redbridge Youth Baker 2015. All entrants must be aged 11-19 and entries must be in by 12 noon on 31st October. To take part or book a ticket email library.informaion@ WHERE: Gants Hill Library WHEN: Sunday 1st November, 9am-2pm WHAT: Loughton Residents’ Association Farmers Market - Produce stalls and local organisations. WHERE: Centric Parade, High Road, Loughton


Tyres at competitive prices (new and used) thousands of tyres available on the day!

Laser wheel alignment from £25 Car Service from £60 We also repair cracked alloy wheels from £55 MOT’s arranged Bodywork services available

Alloy wheel refurbished to original quality ACCIDENTAL DAMAGE WARRANTY on FALKEN tyres We are the only company in East London to offer this service Please ring for further details

Tel: 0208 597 0011 731-733 Eastern Avenue, Newbury Park, Ilford. IG27RT



per 1000 For more information call

01992 283 568 38 










Difficulty: Evil



Can you spot 6 differences between these two pictures?







Fit these Halloween words into the grid: 5 LETTERS 6 LETTERS 8 LETTERS Scary Spooky Werewolf Witch Zombie Mummy Fright 9 LETTERS Trick Nightmare Treat 7 LETTERS Halloween Vampire Pumpkin




Find these autumnal words:

Fireworks Chilly Bonfire

Leaves Changing Wellingtons

Autumn Dew Cobweb

Orange Cosy Season







For puzzle solutions please visit





Win a family ticket to Colchester Zoo during Shriek Week!



need to be collected at the entrance of the zoo on the day of visit. *Child tickets apply to 14 years and under. *Voucher prize has no monetary value and may not be resold. *Vouchers cannot be used on bank holiday and is not valid in conjunction with any other offer. *Tickets cannot be extended under any circumstances. *By entering you agree to provide a picture for publication if you are picked as a winner.



he darkness of ‘Shriek Week’ is set to return to Colchester Zoo... are you brave enough?!! Win a family ticket to visit Colchester Zoo during Shriek Week this October half term from the 24th October - 1st November 2015 and enjoy spook-tacular events suitable for all ages! Listen to the ghostly tale of the ‘Haunted Mansion’; take a ride on the themed road train and loads more! With so many activites for the whole family this is an event not to be missed! For those of you brave enough to stay after dark Colchester Zoo’s Fright Nights are also returning to offer hair-raising screams on selected nights during Shriek Week as the zoo remains open after dark!

To enter: fill in the entry form and send to: Essex Central Magazine, Brickfield Business Centre, High Road, Thornwood, Epping, Essex CM16 6TH, enter online at www. competitions or email your details to: competitions@essexcentral Closing date: Four winners will be picked at random on 19th October 2015. Terms and conditions: *Ticket for 2 adults & 2 children to visit between the 24th October - 1st November 2015. *Ticket will




In Partnership with




ast month I was a dad of one boy, this month I’m the dad of two, as George has now been joined by Jake : ) ... he finally arrived 7 days late, so I guess he’s inherited his mother’s skills when it comes to getting ready. He also arrived at the same time as George, the worst time. 3am she started going into labour. Why can’t it start at a sensible hour? It’s almost as though he has zero consideration for us, and I hope he quickly grows out of this selfish phase. We made our way to the hospital amidst a mixture of sleepy excitement and a few hours later he was here. Luckily for me he’s been blessed with a strong crop of dark hair, in contrast to his brother who sports a light blond bouffant. This should make visually distinguishing them for a quick telling off easier in future, as the names ‘Jake’ and ‘George’ are fairly similar sounding, I fear I could get these continually muddled when trying to quickly discipline (certainly if my own

“We currently feed him using a high powered garden ho se.”

parents are anything to go by, often going through a book of names before painfully stumbling across my own). Thankfully George has taken warmly to him, although when asked where his brother is he still refers to the phrase “In Mummy’s belly” much to the despair of the misses. He has also taken to calling him “it” instead of Jake, and when he cries we are told to, “put it


back in basket,” (I must add at this point - this is a Moses ‘basket’ I’m referring to, we don’t keep him with the laundry). The main difference we’ve noticed between them so far is the colossal amount Jake has been drinking compared to George at the same age, he’s knocking back the milk in gallons and I fear the suppliers at our local dairy are already quaking with fear for when he moves on to cows milk. Most babies are breastfed or have a bottle, but we currently feed him using a high powered garden hose just to keep up with demand. A lot of the time he looks like one of those chicks in the nest on some Attenborough documentary, his red mouth spread open at a reflex angle beckoning for more food to enter. Another thing we have noticed is the side effect of so much milk means he burps slightly louder than Barney from the Simpsons. I’m not sure if he’s attempting some kind of record for volume and duration but it’s incredibly impressive and has given my own hair a rather windswept look. I’m not quite sure what we’ve created in truth, as he also appears to be half ape judging by his hairy ears, although on the plus side I should save money on earmuffs (every cloud). In addition to our new baby we also moved house last month so it’s been a delightfully pleasant period of tranquillity, I’m almost disappointed I didn’t have to climb Everest as I could have done with a challenge. During the ensuing chaos of moving with a 2 year old and a 2 week old we thankfully managed to pack them in comfortable storage and just a few days later found them again in

the loft of the new home. Boxes get thrown about during a house move so I guess this was inevitable (in case anyone reading this is unsure, that was all a joke). George is now starting to string quite long sentences together which is pleasing to hear, “Can I have a yoghurt from the fridge please Daddy? Let’s play on the trampoline daddy,” and the ever

“He burps slightly louder than Barney from the Simpson s.”

loveable “Why was I kept in a box for so long Daddy?”... The little cherubs melt your heart don’t they? I’m hoping Jake will learn quicker by having a big brother to play and learn from, although if my own childhood is anything to go by then Jake will be getting flung around the front room in a series of death defying wrestling manoeuvres (I was the big brother, sorry Dennis!). We were keen when George asked to give Jake a cuddle but proceeded to watch in horror as he gave one of those squeezing cuddles a young child gives a kitten, the kind where the eyeballs start to bulge and a strong purple hue starts to appear on the victim, “Now, now George, let’s put him down and let the blood flow around his body once again”. The dust has started to settle and all four of us are now in our new home and looking forward to more long sentences and even longer burps as the story continues… ...TO BE CONTINUED



The Urban Art Exhibition

Exhibition runs from September 25th to October 4th Images in Frames 71 High Street Wanstead, London E11 2AE

020 7998 4729 Image in Frames is very excited to be exhibiting the art of some of the Urban Art World’s most talented people. Contact us to get your invitation.


Essex Central - THE LOOP - Issue 15 - October 2015  
Essex Central - THE LOOP - Issue 15 - October 2015