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Nov-Dec 2011 Issue 41 www.families-LSB.co.uk

Santa and Panto special See p4 for our fantastic competition

Including our popular local 'What's On' for families with children aged 0 - 12 in Epsom, Sutton, Croydon and surrounding areas


Editor: Izabella Shaw 0208 669 5187 editor@families-LSB.co.uk www.families-LSB.co.uk ‘Families London-Surrey Borders’ is part of a group of magazines headed by ‘Families South West’ established in 1990. All franchised magazines in the group are independently owned and operated under licence. We take every care preparing this magazine, but the publishers and its agents cannot be held responsible for loss or damage, or for the claims of advertisers nor for the accuracy of the contents nor for any consequence. Colour transparencies and any other original materials submitted are sent Printed by Ridgeway Press Limited 01256 at owners risk and, whilst every care is taken, 882131, Bramley, Hampshire. neither Families nor its agents accept liability for © 2011 Families London-Surrey Borders. any loss or damage.

Contents News and views............................................................................... 2 - 4 Competition to win Shrek tickets......................................................4 Activities for mums................................................................................5 Clubs and classes............................................................................. 6 - 7 Mums in business....................................................................................8 Health........................................................................................................9 Education.......................................................................................10 - 11 Local shopping (gift ideas)..........................................................12 - 13 Saving over the holidays......................................................................14 Holidays...................................................................................................15 What’s on - Santa’s grottos & Christmas fairs......................16 - 17 What’s on - Panto & theatres...................................................18 - 19 What’s on - Christmas lights.............................................................20 What’s on - dates for parents............................................................20 What’s on - dates for families............................................................22 Classified advertisers...........................................................................24

Join us on Twitter and Facebook Families Magazine is now Tweeting. We’re at @FamiliesLSB. Why not follow us? Our tweets can tell you whenever we update our site with competitions, news items, and when we update the What’s On section of our site with new venues and things to do.

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If you live in Sutton SM2, you can bask in the glory of knowing that you live in one of the UK’s most family-friendly areas. Sutton made position 20, based on a country-wide analysis of factors including ability scores at KS2; Early years care; crime rates; house prices, salaries and general fertility rates. Sutton achieved an aggregate 17.61 points out of a maximum of 25 on the scale, compared with top-rated postcode Winkleigh in Devon, which scored 19.76. Other Local post codes mentioned in the report include Banstead SM7 (15.43), and East Sheen SW14 (15.51). For full survey, see this link: http://bit.ly/qoTcHs or scan the QR code

Have you got what it takes to be one of the Digital Joneses? If you, your partner or children seem to be constantly connected to the web or web-enabled gadgets, you could be in with a chance of taking part in the Digital Joneses Project, sponsored by Trend Micro. The company is looking for ten everyday families— They may be geeks, regular families or even technology-averse — to provide insight on how technology impacts both positively and negatively on their everyday lives. The families will be given a number of simple tasks and challenges throughout 2012, designed to illustrate how they are using the internet to aid their everyday lives; how they spend their time online, what they enjoy, and what their main concerns are.  The families will also receive a new iPad, a range of security software as well as free identity theft insurance. www.facebook.com/digitaljoneses

A Girl for All Time encourages imaginative play

We’re also posting updates and stories at Facebook.com/FamiliesLSB.

A new range of dress-up dolls encourages children to explore history through imaginative play.

Again, whenever we get late-breaking news or web-only competitions, we can let you know about them. But only if you ‘Like’ our page.

The basic figure is a high quality vinyl doll with articulated legs and arms. She comes with a beautiful outfit. However, she has some brilliant added extras: she features in a historical novel aimed at eight year-olds upwards which encourages children to act out scenes from the book and also to explore some of the key moments in British history.

Family Lives seek volunteers in Croydon Family Lives is looking for parent and adult carers throughout Croydon to train as Befriending Volunteers to support the charity in its frontline work with parents and families. Activities undertaken by Befriending Volunteers include: visiting a family to befriend them on a one-to-one basis; visiting children’s centres and community venues to talk to parents; helping Family Lives staff to set up parent support groups and signposting parents to services that can support them. 

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Sutton is one of the UK’s top places to live © Copyright Flickr Danacea

Picture courtesy of John Lewis Partnership

news & views

You can also get additional outfits for the doll to make different stories and different scenes more realistic. Not only that, but she features in keepsake books which give ideas of visits, activities and games suited to the different periods of history.

The charity recently launched its ‘Instructions Not Included’ campaign to encourage parents and adult carers to support one another via volunteering and befriending opportunities.

A Girl for All Times dolls cost around £90, with extra outfits priced at about £25. She is available from Bambolina based in Epsom (see page 12 for discount offer) as well as other stores.

020 8655 2402 or visit www.familylives.org.uk/instructionsnotincluded

www.agirlforalltime.com

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November-December 2011


news & views Young infant scientists needed by researchers at University College © Copyright Sharon Pruitt

Researchers studying when and how infants learn how to understand facial expressions of emotion are looking for baby helpers up to 24 months. Grown ups seem to know this instinctively: if we see someone smiling we know they are happy. But it’s not instinct — very young babies don’t do this — so the team at the Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience Unit, at University College of London (UCL)’s Institute of Child Health is studying how infants develop this ability. They are looking for families with young infant scientists between 6 and 24 months to help them. The study involves visiting UCL for a safe 30-minute electroencephalogram session. They offer £5 compensation for your time. If your baby is too young, they can set up a study visit for when your child reaches the appropriate age. If you are interested in participating or have any questions please contact Fernando Ferreira-Santos at f.santos@ich.ucl.ac.uk or 020 7905 2652.

Attach-a-Tag boosts fund-raising scheme for groups Attach-a-Tag, the brilliant way to put name tags on clothes, shoes and other property, is expanding its fund-raising scheme for schools, nurseries and groups.

Homeclean opens in Croydon and Bromley A new cleaning service is now available in the Croydon and Bromley areas. Local mum, Emma Swan has set up a business called Homeclean, which is a domestic cleaning agency. They charge £7/hour in addition to an annual agency fee for providing cleaning and ironing services. Her office is dedicated to serving the Croydon CR and Bromley BR postcodes. She told Families, “Our cleaners are locally based and are happy to travel to our clients’ homes at times/dates to suit the client.” She added, “We can provide high quality cleaners at very short notice. They all offer an ironing and laundry service too. If the cleaner is on holiday or ill we offer a replacement service at no extra charge.” Emma is offering a 15% discount on the annual agency fee to any reader quoting ‘Families’ in an email or telephone call. Call Emma on 020 8677 4924 or email

emma@homeclean.co.uk

People associated with the school (PTA members, teachers etc) can sign up on their website (free to join) and receive 10% commission. Alternatively, they can call the Attach-a-Tag office on

01757 638926 to request a fund-raising pack with promotional materials and as many order forms as needed.  www.attachatag.com

We would like to thank all our advertisers, without whose support this magazine would not be possible

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news and views Brilliant bakers make gluten-free cakes for delivery A Sydenham-based baker has started making a range of gluten-free cakes. What’s more, they are available on-line for delivery anywhere in the UK. The Brilliant Bakers, the UK’s largest on-line cake delivery company, have developed a great tasting, gluten-free, option on all their party, celebration and gift cakes. Tim Slatter, co-owner of The Brilliant Bakers, whose daughter was diagnosed coeliac at just two years old, has shared the dread of denying his daughter a slice of birthday cake for too many years. It became his mission to create a gluten-free cake choice before his daughter’s fifth birthday. Tim said, “My way of coping was to begin a crusade, thinking it was within my powers to provide coeliac kids throughout the country with exciting gluten-free personalised birthday cakes. No more tears, something for all the children at the party to enjoy with no exclusions.” www.thebrilliantbakers.co.uk

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Could you help a vulnerable teenager move on to a successful future? Sutton fostering urgently needs caring, patient and understanding people to look after teenagers. Teenage years are difficult enough, but when you consider that 70% of children in care are there because of neglect or abuse, you can see why their behaviour can be particularly challenging. Foster carers need to be firm and consistent but also nurturing and caring, good at communicating, have a lot of energy and able to be an advocate. Christine, a foster carer said fostering this age is all about “offering them a loving home, kindness and opportunities – what they’ve never had – and letting them take it slowly, one step at a time.” Her husband commented “For me, that’s why I foster. Having aspirations for them and helping them achieve them. Being good role models for them.” If you are interested in fostering teenagers then please contact Sutton Fostering on 020 8770 4250 or email them on suttonfostering@sutton.gov.uk or click on www.suttonfostering.org.uk

Are you getting the right car seat advice? Major shops are giving parents potentially dangerous advice on child car seat installation, finds Which? The consumer champion sent undercover investigators to 43 stores across the country. They visited seven branches each of five well-known chains plus seven independent shops. The Which? investigators found: A third (15 stores) of stores visited failed to ask the weight of the child. Almost half (20) the stores recommended seats that were incompatible with the ordinary family car. Almost half (21) failed to install the seats correctly. Two major retail chains – Mamas & Papas and Babies ‘R’ Us - completely failed to mention the importance of keeping a baby rear-facing for longer, in all of the seven stores visited. which.co.uk/buyingchecklist which.co.uk/buyacarseat

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November-December 2011


activities for mums Join a women-only fencing class at the Phoenix Centre

GBMAA adds women-only class and kids class

Learn about wine on a non-pretentious course

Fancy yourself as the next Elizabeth Swann (from Pirates of the Caribbean)?

Two members of the GBMAA grouping have opened new martial arts classes.

Families magazine recently attended a winetasting evening at the Antique Wine Company up in London.

Everyone Active is offering taster sessions in fencing for ladies at The Phoenix Centre in Wallington for just £1.00 per session. The £1 sessions are running on Mondays (10.00 - 11.00am) and Wednesdays (7.00 - 8.00pm). If there is enough interest they are going to set up a ladies-only fencing club from January 2012. This editor went along for a session and I can say (with feeling) that it is a great way to have a cardiovascular workout, as well as exercising the thighs and glutes.

Leatherhead and Epsom Martial Arts Academy will be starting a daytime women-only Boxercise / Fitness class in October. Epsom Martial Arts Academy has opened a new KidsZone kickboxing class at the Rainbow Centre from 9.00am on Saturday mornings. KidsZone classes are for children aged from six to eight years old and consist of Martial Arts, Life Skills and Self Defence. Every week the kids have fun learning different new topics including Perseverance, Courage, Discipline, Concentration as well as interactively learning Martial Art moves to go towards their new belt gradings. For either class, call Saffron Power on 07584 473784 or see www.gbacademies.com.

The key thing about the evening was to educate and inform, and not to criticise or judge people for what they liked – or didn’t. We asked all kinds of questions, but course tutor Peter McCombie MW (who selects wines for the Dorchester and Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen, among other restaurants) took them all in his stride, seeing it as an opportunity to spread his enthusiasm without talking down to anyone. We tasted eight wines ranging from about £8 up to £100 a bottle and had a great evening. For a Christmas gift with a difference, they sell vouchers which can go toward payment either for a specific course, or any future session.

Everyone Active says people should get 30 minutes of activity five times a week, and this will certainly contribute toward that target. It’s also great fun.

They also run ladies-only courses during the day for those who want to learn some tricks for matching wine with food.

For more details, contact The Phoenix centre on 020 8770 6006 or see www.everyoneactive.com

www.antique-wine.com

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activities, clubs and classes

Behind the scenes at ...

We would like to thank all our advertisers, without whose support this magazine would not be possible.

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zone with two interactive walls and a floor and installed a ‘magic carpet’ projection system in the Toddler Village.

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What is your name and title?

David Long – General Manager, Kidspace Croydon. What does Kidspace Croydon offer to parents (and children)?

An innovative facility where the children can exercise in disguise whilst have fun, leaving the parents to either play and interact with their children, or relax in the licensed restaurant reading a paper, catching up with friends or having a coffee or a glass of wine before having lunch from our extensive menu which includes stone-based pizza, pasta, panini and flame-grilled burgers.

Our next plans are to regenerate the soft play sections in the Toddler Village and create two new Party PODs above the go karts track. What do you do for lunch?

This is quite comical, and I’m glad I’m answering this and not the chefs. I do always eat on site, but I am rather particular, so in the kitchen there is a framed picture of ‘David’s Menu’ on the wall which tells the chefs exactly how I like my food to be cooked. I really do feel sorry for them as they take pride in being creative, but I am a very plain eater.

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When do you get in each morning and what’s the first thing you do?

That varies… Most days I dual role as the General Manager and Duty Manager so I will either start at 8am or 11am. On days that I schedule myself to be more office based, I usually like to start between 8am and 9am. The first thing I do is open the door to get in, but after that it’s turn my computer on, check our communications diary and see what’s awaiting my attention… No two days are ever the same. What is the busiest time for you?

Rainy days. Especially during the winter school holidays of February and October. The weather is so unpredictable that it takes a certain degree of planning to ensure we have the right number of team working. When will the weather remote control be invented?

When closing time comes, how do you feel?

I would like to find anyone that would say “Oh, no, time to go home already”; but there is always a sense of achievement, knowing that we have provided a service where at times, over 1000 people have visited us that day, or 300 children have attended birthday parties; so as long as everyone has had a good time, I do think “Well Done Team – Job Well Done”. What’s your best memory of working at Kidspace?

There are far too many. Most rewarding times would be presenting the ‘Big Events’ entertaining 200 children.

Kidspace wins award

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How can parents get the best from your attraction?

If you enjoy reading Families and find the information in it useful, please remember to let them know where you found out about them, when you contact them.

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I think to really get involved with interacting with their children. The facilities have been designed with the intention of adults having just as much fun as the children; although if parents have come with a group of kids who think it’s not cool to play with the grown-ups then the adults are welcome to make use of our free wi-fi, read our selection of newspapers and magazines or use our internet terminals (whilst fully supervising their children of course.)

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What is planned for the coming months?

Over the past twelve months we have re-invested to increase the size of our go-karts track, we have added an interactive

Congratulations to Kidspace Croydon and Kidspace Romford who won two awards at the Play Providers Association Aspire Awards 2011. ASPIRE in the Community (Silver award) Operator of the Year – Multi Site (Bronze award).

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November-December 2011


activities, clubs & classes Stagecoach opens new school at Bourne Hall Epsom Stagecoach Principal Ellie Scott is opening a new school in the heart of Ewell at Bourne Hall. The Thursday evening classes start in January, but Ellie is holding an open taster session in early December. The new class will have exclusive use of the theatre every week. Ellie said she couldn’t be happier to have secured such a fantastic venue and can’t wait to open the school in January and start rehearsals for the first show. She already runs five ‘main schools’ and six ‘early stages’ classes from Wednesdays through to Saturdays. Students at the Epsom Schools get the opportunity to audition for professional film/TV and theatre work and there are currently six Epsom students playing leading roles in west end shows including ‘Oliver’, ‘Sound Of Music’, ‘Shrek’, ‘Lion King’ and ‘South Pacific’. Ellie said, “If your child wants to pursue a career in the performing arts then Stagecoach is the perfect place to start. If your child simply wants to enjoy the performing arts with like-minded people then the classes are also the perfect place for you.” Try Epsom Stagecoach out at the Open Day on the 8 December 6.00pm to 7.00pm at Bourne Hall. Call or email to book your free place at the taster session: 01932 784 001 epsom@stagecoach.co.uk

After-School arts club includes SEN students A range of after-school clubs providing creative arts programmes is being run by Creative Circles. These are dedicated artists and volunteers with a passion to make a real difference to lives of children with special educational needs or learning disabilities, and their parents. Hale Own, an artist and mother of three, who established Creative Circles, said, “we aim to provide a colourful and educational arts programmes for children from five to 15 years. We want to help everyone to gain skills and enjoyment and develop their latent talents. For those who have mild SEN who would benefit from more inclusion and support, we aim to provide a creative environment and where they can access creative art workshops. Creative arts are for all and we like to increase participation and awareness of how art can benefit the community.” The clubs are currently held at Laleham Lea School, 29 Peaks Hill, Purley, but are expanding to include a larger, more central venue in Croydon. For more information and to enrol, please call 07740 165987, or email office@creativecircles.org.uk

Explore opens centre in Addiscombe, Croydon The new Explore Learning centre at Croydon Addiscombe opened on 27 October 2011. You’ll find it at 335 Lower Addiscombe Road, Addiscombe CR0 6RG. Explore offer Maths and English tuition for five to 14 year olds of all abilities. To book a free trial session, call them or complete a free trial form online on their website. 020 3370 5420 www.explorelearning.co.uk

Monkey Music: the correct phone number We’re sorry we made an error in our last issue (Sept-Oct 2011). The only contact telephone number available for booking classes in Banstead and Epsom is 01932 223309. Please mention Families magazine if you contact these companies November-December2011

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mums in business Starting a business? Here’s some financial advice When you start a new business, there are plenty of people who will take your money, but sometimes the simplest advice is just to keep an eye on the books.

In this article, licenced book-keeper Sarah Francis offers some tips to new start-ups. Through her company, Prime Numbers, she deals with a range of small clients in the Carshalton, Sutton, Mitcham, Croydon, Morden area. She fits the work in around caring for her two young children which means she can be flexible – often working through evenings and weekends, just like a lot of her clients. The difference between a book-keeper and an accountant is similar to the difference between a fully-qualified solicitor and a licenced conveyancing agent when moving house. You can choose to use a solicitor for that, but a conveyancer usually charges less and may be better at the conveyancing, simply because they specialise in that one area of law. They also report to a professional body, so there is comeback should anything go wrong. Sarah says the first piece of advice she gives is to look at the profit. When the profit is likely to be less than £15 000, to £20,000, it is usually cheaper and easier to set up as a sole trader or partnership than as a limited company. Not only are there tax benefits when profits are low, but the administration costs and financial charges are lower as well. Once profits get above around £17,000, though, the lower tax rate on companies starts to make it more cost-effective to set up as a limited company.

Labels4Kids founder wins Entrepreneur of the Year Ann-Maree Morrison, Director of Labels4Kids Ltd. was named Entrepreneur of the Year at The Savoy on 14th September 2011 The judges were impressed with how Ann-Maree has created a dedicated following of supporters from across the globe through an active social-media strategy and online forum for parents and families on her website Like many great business ideas, Labels4Kids was born from personal need when AnnMaree, the mother of three young boys, grew tired of her boys coming home from school with other children’s clothes. Labels4Kids produces vinyl waterproof labels, iron on, stick on and sew on labels for children’s school clothing and general items.

Another good tip is always to have a separate bank account for your business dealings and not to use your personal current account for your business activities. Any professional who looks at a personal bank account will have to spend hours working out which transactions are personal and which are business-related. That is going to be costly. She said some people have an almost instinctive feel for their profitability, but for everyone else (and that’s most people) it makes sense to send through the invoices and receipts more often than once a year. That way, your accountant or book keeper can keep you informed about profits, or alert you to other issues with the business. Also, the likely tax bill should not be so much of a surprise if the accounts are kept in order. Contact Sarah at 0208 395 9516 or 07961 455970 – www.prime-numbers.biz/

123-reg wants Mummies (and Daddies) to Blog 123-reg, the UK’s largest domain registrar, has launched a guide to help get parents blogging.  More mummy bloggers are creating content than almost any other social group, sharing their ideas and experiences with the world. This guide will help them get the most from their blog, featuring a ‘how to’ for getting started, such as where to host a blog and tips on blog design. The guide can be downloaded from the website (below), where there are additional hints, tips and offers for mummies (or daddies) getting started in blogging.  To save £10, and secure a ‘.me’ domain for only £4.99 for the first year, enter the voucher code ‘MUMMY’ at www.123-reg.com. www.themummiesguidetoblogging.com

Mini Makeovers marks 10 years in business Mini Makeovers, the bespoke party company for girls established by Donna Corcos, is celebrating ten years in business. The main element of their parties is a makeover and styling session for the birthday girl and all her friends. After that the sky’s the limit, depending on your budget.

www.labels4kids.com/fam

Give the gift of photographic skills Stuck for a present for expectant or new parents? Time for Mums has the answer - a gift voucher for their Photography for Parents classes valid for 12 months and redeemable at any of their venues in Croydon, Nutfield in Surrey and London. The vouchers are available in two versions - as customisable e-vouchers or printed and beautifully packaged little gift boxes sent to the address of your choice. If your recipient is unable to join any of their photography courses within nine months, the voucher can be redeemed as a professional family photoshoot with one of the course instructors - all of them professional children’s photographers. Both versions of vouchers can be purchased online at the website, or at participating venues (see website for details). www.timeformums.com 8

Donna is, first and foremost, a mum as well as a ‘mumpreneur’ and, perhaps typical of many working mums, a multi-tasking whirlwind. She came up with the idea for the business after having created many parties for her own two girls, and realising that there was no one else offering such a service to mums. So, what next? Mini Makeovers currently operates in London and surrounding counties. Donna says “ We are always being asked if we can do parties in places outside of these areas so, having established and refined the format of the business over the last 10 years, we are now looking seriously at developing it further as a franchise opportunity”. 020 8398 0107 www.minimakeovers.com/

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November-December 2011


health E. Coli outbreak linked to unwashed vegetables

© Copyright © Elena Volkova

Consumers are being reminded to thoroughly wash vegetables and observe good kitchen hygiene following an investigation into 250 cases of gastrointestinal illness caused by an unusual strain of E. coli O157. The investigation into the outbreak, which is now over, revealed an association between illness and handling certain loose raw vegetables in the home, which, although safe to eat, could have had soil on them containing harmful bacteria. Handling raw vegetables in the home explained many, but not all, of the cases. www.hpa.org.uk/Topics/InfectiousDiseases/InfectionsAZ/EscherichiaColi/

Kaloba syrup can reduce impact of common cold Kaloba Syrup is the new addition to the successful Kaloba range of herbal medicines containing the active ingredient, EPs 7630 extract of Pelargonium sidoides. It is widely available at health stores. The manufacturers say Kaloba Syrup has been scientifically proven to shorten the duration of upper respiratory tract infections, such as acute bronchitis and the common cold, and reduce the severity of the symptoms. Kaloba Syrup is one of the only cough and cold remedies suitable for children with asthma (aged 6+).

Aiming to be SuperMum can be unhealthy The myth of the SuperMum causes depression in mothers, according to psychotherapist Marni Eisenberg. She was responding to a new survey from the University of Washington which surveyed 1,600 women and found that depression was more common in stay-at-home mums, and also seen in working mums who expect to successfully juggle it all. She said “Every mother knows there are not enough hours in the day to get everything done, and that is without adding a career. Since when did women stop viewing motherhood as a full-time, extremely challenging job in its own right? The message that mums should be able to balance work and family life - and be successful in both roles - is dangerous. More and more women brand themselves failures for not achieving this label, which is incredibly value-laden. Depression isn’t about how many roles we have. It is linked to what we expect of ourselves,” Marni Eisenberg MA, UKCP, MBACP is based in Guernsey. As well as personal counselling and life coaching, she created the Philosophy for Children school curriculum for Guernsey. www.themaxigroup.com/

Blood tests can reassure over allergies

© Ovidiu Iordachi - Fotolia.com

Parents all over the UK are needlessly worrying about food allergies as they pack their children off to school. For those who suspect their youngster may have a food allergy - leaving them in the care of teachers all day and with school meals is worrying to say the least. However, research shows that as many as 60 per cent of children with supposed allergies, do not actually have them – causing unnecessary anxiety and food avoidance. Now allergy experts are urging parents to take their children to the local GP for a simple food allergy test which will stop all the guessing. guidance.nice.org.uk/CG116

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education Financial support at school As the financial squeeze gets tighter, more parents are seeking financial help for their child’s education at an independent school. Most support is offered directly by the school, so application procedures will be vary widely. However, one expert suggested looking into the options around two years before you expect your child to move to the new school. Almost all schools offer some kind of support, as part of their justification of charitable status, and to attract the best students.

Bursaries A Bursary is financial support, based on need. They are usually awarded after a student has been accepted to the school. Almost all are means-tested and range from 100 percent of the fees, down to just a small fraction. If a prospective student achieves a high score in an entrance exam, or an outstanding interview, but the parents suggest that they may not be able to afford the fees, the school may offer a Bursary, in order to ensure they get to teach particularly talented students.

Scholarships A Scholarship is not means-tested, but is awarded only on merit. Often they are awarded on the result of an entrance exams, but some schools offer Scholarships in specific subjects, such as art, music, drama or sport. Like a Bursary, the amount of the Scholarship can vary. Schools which charge high fees sometimes award a scholarship to bring their fees into line with less prestigious schools, as a way to recruit particularly talented students. For more, see, Get The Right School www.gettherightschool.co.uk

Schools to keep Charitable status How can an Independent School also operate as a charity? By meeting a requirement to offer benefit to the public at large.

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Fees

Up to now the Charity Commission decided which of the schools’ activities contributed to this public benefit requirement and hence their charity status. However, there is still a feeling that the Commission can threaten to remove Charity status from the school.

The Independent Schools Council (ISC), which represents the majority of independent schools in the UK, has gone to the Courts in an attempt to remove this threat. Following a recent ruling, the current position is that each independent schools must decide how to meet the public benefit requirement, but just a token benefit for the poor is not enough. ISC’s general counsel Matthew Burgess says: “The ruling takes public benefit decisions away from the Commission and hands them back to school governors.” The governors now decide what is public benefit and what is not. It also breaks the link between bursaries and public benefit, said Burgess.

“The Commission’s former approach had the effect of reducing the public benefit of independent schools to a crude calculation of fees and bursaries.”

Burgess said the number of children benefiting each year from means-tested assistance in member schools is rising each year.  He added that the current 39,308 bursaries (worth more than £260 million) is coming out of the pockets of schools and parents, and not the taxpayers. The ISC, which represents the eight leading independent schools associations in the UK, points out that out of the total of 164,105 pupils at ISC schools, 33 percent receive help with their fees to the tune of £660 million per year. What’s more, a large percentage, more than 80 per cent, comes directly from the schools. Another interesting fact that the ISC are keen to get across is that 89 per cent of their schools are engaged in partnerships with state schools or with the community in which they exist. See www.isc.co.uk/PressMedia_Pressreleases.htm

Boost Your Child’s Confidence

Vote for your favourite books

The early school years play a major role in shaping a child’s confidence and self-esteem. Research shows that children with high selfesteem tend to tackle new challenges more effectively and be more successful in school.

Children nationwide are being invited to vote for their favourite of ten shortlisted books.

Children need a positive, fun and rewarding environment to learn in, especially if they are to gain self confidence. Tuition centres can provide a great balance between teaching children well and building their confidence quickly by using structured lesson plans and reward systems for achievements Whether it’s to help them through their exams, work on particular skills they might be lacking or to give them some new challenges, students may need a tutor to teach them concepts, methods and strategies to help their understanding and boost their confidence. Whether you decide to start tuition now or later, getting your child assessed will provide you with valuable information for the future. You’ll find out your child’s strengths and weaknesses, gaps in their learning, suggested strategies for progress and where to go from here.

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School

“Bursaries remain important but not to the exclusion of other activities.”

This year’s Red House Children’s Book Award is the only national award for children’s books that is voted for entirely by children themselves. The category winners and the author of the best children’s book published in the 2011 nomination period will be announced – for the first time ever – at a glittering awards ceremony which takes place in the Queen Elizabeth Hall at the South Bank Centre in London on Saturday 18th February 2012.

NumberWorks’n’Words offer free assessment sessions with no obligations at their centres in Sutton and the recently-opened Wallington centre.

A dedicated website showcases all the shortlisted titles and featured authors. Any child can vote here for their favourite book in different categories from now until 20th January 2012.

Sutton 0208 642 8884 Wallington 0208 669 4343

www.redhousechildrensbookaward.co.uk

Please mention Families magazine if you contact these companies Families London-Surrey Borders

020 8669 5187

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November-December 2011


education INDEPENDENT SCHOOL OPEN DAYS City of London Freeman’s School, Ashtead: Sat 5 Nov: Open Morning 9.45 for 10.00am start.

Downsend School, Main school - Leatherhead 01372 372311. Fri 4 Nov: Headmaster’s talk - 9.30am.

Priory Preparatory School, Banstead 01737 366 920. Wed 16 Nov: Pop in morning 9.00 – 11.00am

Croydon High School Sat 12 Nov: Yr 7 Taster morning (for Year 6s only) 9.00 – 12.45pm (020 8260 7543 to book); Wed 23 Nov: Junior school taster session 10.30 – 11.30am (020 8260 7508 for invitation)

Downsend School, All Lodges - Ashtead, Epsom & Leatherhead 01372 372311. Thu 10 Nov: Open day from 9.15am

Sutton High School 020 8225 3001. Thu 10 Nov: Whole school open morning 10.00am - 12.30pm

Maths needed to solve action-packed Adventure A new adventure story for young teens needs the reader to use maths to solve the puzzles and work out the mystery. Two clever outcasts, Lady Di Smith and Tom Jones live in a boring, uneventful town, but work together to find the truth behind a series of strange disappearances before it’s too late. The publishers say, “This is not your run of the mill teen detective novel, this gripping mystery is laced with clues for the reader to decode: it makes maths fun.” Island of the Unknowns: by Benedict Carey. Price: £3.99 (Promotional Price) ISBN: 97808-1099-6632

Greenacre School, Banstead 01737 352114. Wed 16 Nov: Prospective Parents’ Morning 10.30 – 12.30pm

Thames Christian College, SW11 020 7228 393. Thu 3 Nov or by appointment by contacting the registrar, Catherine Holsgrove

Focus on phonics criticised by committee of MPs A new report has been published with MPs claiming that the focus on phonics in schools will turn reading for children into a “dull exercise”. They are concerned that children will be turned off reading by the Government’s new literacy drive and the Coalition policies that have been designed to make schools use back-to-basics teaching methods. The All-Party Parliamentary Group for Education is claiming that too much emphasis on this method could affect pupils’ learning and lead to a decline in literacy. They also claim the Education Establishment shares this opinion. According to the latest figures, around 16 per cent of children leave primary school without being able to read to an acceptable level, with one in ten boys having only the reading skills of a seven-year-old.

11+ Made Easy courses launched at Laleham Lea The 11plus Company will be running a series of short 11+ courses at Laleham Lea Primary School in Purley during school holidays. These courses are ideal for pupils looking for affordable intensive courses on various aspects of the 11+ subjects. They include: • Creative Writing Made Easy • Comprehension Made Easy.  Suitable for pupils in Years 4, 5 and 6. For more details please email: info@11pluspassclub.com or call 0800 242 5525.

Please mention Families magazine if you contact these companies November-December2011

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11


christmas gift ideas

Shop local for unique gifts We are lucky in this area to have many fantastic local independent businesses offering individual gifts and services which you won’t find on the average high street. If you are looking for that special gift, why not take a look and see what they have to offer? Many have online shops, so you don’t even have to leave your house to do your Christmas shopping ­— a bonus if you have young children in tow. We’ve listed a selection below, but visit our website www.families-LSB. co.uk/local-directory (or scan the QR code above) for more places to shop... Epsom mums’ website sells everything for dolls Epsom-based Bambolina is website run by a group of mums. They have a wide range of dolls, as well as clothes, prams, furniture and accessories for dolls. Most of them are hard to find on the high street. Cate O’Neill, owner and founder of Bambolina, told Families, “Our customers include mums and a few dads, and lots of aunts and grandparents, all buying for the little girls in their lives. We also appeal to doll collectors.” Prices range from everyday to premium. Cate said they have Spanish made toddler dolls for £27.99 offering great value and German-made baby dolls for over £150. Bambolina is offering a 10% discount for readers. Just enter Families in the voucher code box at checkout. Available until 12 December 2011. 01372 722239 www.bambolina.co.uk

Fairies and Pirates for hand-made fancy dress wear Tadworth-based mum Charlotte Johnson has children who love dressing up, so she set up an on-line shop, Fairies and Pirates making customised dressing up outfits mainly for children, but also for adults on request. 10% discount for customers who mention Families magazine. 07825 773210 - www.fairiesandpirates.co.uk

One of a kind Looking for amazing cakes or cupcakes...look no further. Or how about a Christmas party with a difference? Cupcake Parties are a fantastic fun way to get together with a group of friends. Contact Tracey for details.

Are you looking for that special pair of shoes for your Christmas party, along with personal service? Then pop over to Shoehouse in Banstead High Street. They have a wide range of beautiful shoes – for men, women and children – to choose from. Styles range from everyday to special occasion footwear.

www.theshoehouse.co.uk

The staff are all passionate about what they do – helping you find the right shoes and accessories. Try them out at 127 High Street, Banstead, Surrey, SM7 2NS. 01737 377638

Gorgeous gifts for friends and family Give the gift of good health and wellbeing this Christmas with a luxurious collection of products made with the highest quality and finest ingredients, including the purest form of aloe vera. Katie and her team have a great idea: Simply tell them who the gifts are for and what budget you have; then let them do the rest with customised gifts and wrapping. Special offer to all Families readers - 10% discount on every order over £50. Orders must be placed in person or over the phone. Call Katie on 07909 681884 or 01737 766403. www.gorgeousgifts.myforever.biz/christmas

Surrey Soaps - a true cottage industry

164 Brighton Road, Coulsdon CR5 2NE 020 8660 3605 www.oneofakindcakeco.co.uk

We Love Our Skin Local mums Mandy Malcolm and Camilla Case sell an inclusive range of dolls and other toys which emphasise a range of different skin colours and also disabilities. They are based in an office in Airport House on the Purley Way. Camilla told Families that they started out looking for children’s toys which represented their own culture. That sent them sourcing dolls designed to portray people from a range of backgrounds including Afro-Caribbean, White Caucasian, Latino, Indian sub-continent, Asian and even native American. They also stock books, jigsaws, puzzles and other products, all with the same inclusive theme. Prices start from around £4 up to £45 or so. www.weloveourskin.co.uk

12

Shoehouse

The first thing you notice at The Surrey Soap Company HQ is the smell – or rather the scent. It’s a fresh mix of lavender and zingy lemon, with a dash of rose. This small, family-run company, based in Ewell, makes luxury soaps and bath treats the old-fashioned way – with no chemicals. “We use only natural oils and plant extracts, so our products not only smell and look wonderful, they’re also very gentle on the skin,” said owner Lis Speight. All their soaps are made in small batches, by hand, in the soap kitchen. Lis said she uses the old-fashioned ‘cold-process’ method, which helps to retain all of the skin enriching qualities of the luxury oils she uses to make their products. Sniff out The Surrey Soap Company at craft fairs and markets across the county, or buy online at www.surreysoapcompany.co.uk.

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November-December 2011


christmas gift ideas Hand-sewn goods as gifts and for every day Local mum Kerstin Wonders makes individual hand-sewn items which can be gifts or treasured keepsakes. Things like personalised name cushions, roll-up pencil holders, hats and bags for little ones and seasonal things such stockings and advent calendars. Kerstin told Families: “When I was a child I loved watching my grandma making things on her sewing machine. Often I sat on her lap whilst she was making amazing dresses for me, my mum, her friends, and even for my Barbie.” When Kerstin’s little girls started school and kindergarten she had more spare time, and the memories of that sewing machine came back. She said, “I knew that was what I wanted to do: sewing, making things using my hands, imagination and love which I - and other people - would be able to enjoy.” She added, “People like my ideas, colours and you cannot find the items on the high street. Every item is unique and made with love.” See her at the craft fairs in Ewell (12 Nov.) and Reigate (3 Dec.) – see our What’s On guide on pages 17 - 20 for more information. info@wondersforall.com.

www.wondersforall.com

Garam Masala Spice Kitchen Hari Ghotra Kamaluddin runs the Garam Masala Spice Kitchen. Based in Redhill, she said, “we teach our customers how to create amazing Indian food all in the comfort of their own homes.” She said her business isn’t about commercial food or celebrity chefs. “It is about great home cooking the way my mum taught me.” 07801 966 581 www.garam-masala.co.uk

Freckle Bay for organic clothes This children’s clothing and giftware shop at 139 High St., Banstead, is run by mother and daughter team, Linzi and Fern. They specialise in organic clothing and unique, individual toys and gifts which children (and parents) love. 10 percent discount available to Families readers. 01737 668824 www.freckle-bay.co.uk

Calladoodles A high street gift boutique with a difference bringing handmade to Carshalton high street. 18 The High Street, Carshalton SM5 3AG 0208 669 6219

Cakes and cones Cakes & Cones is a small family run home business based in Epsom and was born out of Millie-Ann’s love for cooking and celebrating family and children. Looking for a fresh gift idea? Why not send a gift of your choice, perhaps with a flower or a card for a more personal touch. Whether its a box of cupcakes, or a hamper of various items you’ve chosen from their website, your order will be made to your request, gift-wrapped and delivered in person at a pre-arranged time. 01372 725165 millie@cakesandcones.co.uk www.cakesandcones.co.uk / 07877 387189

Let it be Cake Elsa Santana set up Let it be Cake to bake cakes and other baked goods using only fresh ingredients. While a lot of her business is wedding cakes, she also caters for birthdays, anniversaries, or baby showers. She also does cupcakes, cookies, cake pops and cheesecakes. Elsa said her cakes are only made per order, made from organic and finest, purest ingredients.” She will be making amazing gingerbread houses for Christmas. Order now. 07932 564 033 — www.letitbecake.co.uk

Cocoa River If you love chocolates, or know someone who does, you need to head down to Cocoa River next to Carshalton Beeches station in Beeches Avenue, Carshalton, where Carlo Edwards, the proprietor makes delicious hand-made Belgian chocolates. This year he has extended his range to include a zero-sugar range suitable for diabetics, using high quality chocolate from Belgian supplier Barry Callebout, which has recently introduced a range of raw chocolate suited for diabetics. The chocolates are available only from Cocoa River. All chocolates ranges in the shop sell at around £4 / 100g. [Ed’s. note: we have tried both types and they are yummy.] www.cocoariver.co.uk 0208 2960158

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13


holiday season

Keeping it frugal, yet festive We love Christmas in our house but this year we’re even more determined not to blow our budget and make sure that it’s about happy times and not mostly about shopping and eating. We’ve put together a few tips to make sure your Christmas is full of meaning and Christmas cheer, whilst keeping it frugal and festive. Creative presents

With supermarkets open for most of the festive period don’t over buy or over spend on food. With careful planning you can just buy what you need, then top up as you go.

We’re not suggesting that you give Granny a junk robot – but if you pick the right craft or idea to suit your talent, a thoughtful present can outshine any new gift.

Everyone understands when money is tight and if you feel uncomfortable about accepting gifts that cost more than you spent, ask the whole family to set a ceiling on the amount everyone spends to help avoid embarrassment.

Frame your child’s picture – the right frame can do justice to any work of art, however abstract. Make a family photo calendar. There are companies that can do this for you, but if you are a dab hand on the computer, you may even be able to do it yourself.

If skimping at Christmas is out of the question then plan, plan and plan. Buy early to spread the cost and don’t buy anything you don’t need.

It all in the timing

Decorate a piece of pottery. There are pottery cafes all over South London and Surrey where you can go and paint a ready made piece of pottery. It doubles as an afternoon’s entertainment as well as a present.

Children value the time we spend together far more than presents. Find a game that all the family can play together. This can help to ensure they are not on their electronic games all day.

Homemade chocolate truffles, jams or chutneys always go down a treat and this year we are going to make lemon curd too.

Take all toys out of their boxes before wrapping them, remove all the plastic wrapping and ties and put them back in their boxes with batteries installed. It saves scrabbling around for Philip screwdrivers on Christmas Day morning.

You could also try customised bed linen or cushions. Give up presents and donate a small amount to charity. With children, this can be difficult so you could try buying from charity sites or shops – many do products which aren’t second hand.

Festive savings Earn money shopping at Christmas using cashback facilities on credit cards, or shop online at specialist cash back sites such as www.cashbackshopper.co.uk.

Check the discount voucher sites online – there are some great discounts and you may even get new ideas for gifts. If you are hosting a family celebration and your budget is really stretched, ask everyone to make a contribution. Apart from cash, this could be in the form of Christmas pudding, mince pies, cheeseboard, chocolates or nuts.

What our readers say We asked our readers what makes Christmas special for them.... • We always try to go to a church service for children. We’re not big on religion but Christmas is a religious holiday so it’s important for children to understand the real reason we celebrate. • We give gifts to charity – last year there was a present donation scheme for foster children in Croydon. • Our street have a Christmas carol singalong complete with mulled wine and mince pies. • Burning of the Clocks in Brighton was originally conceived to provide an alternative to the commerciality of Christmas and to us always seems like the perfect start to the festive period. • A difficult jigsaw usually keeps everyone in our house happy. • A very long country walk on boxing day. • We have a screen ban on Christmas day so it’s all about the time spent together. • For more tips and articles about Christmas visit www.familiesonline.co.uk. 14

Don’t give all the children’s presents on Christmas Day – spread them out over the whole period between Christmas and New Year. This saves on present overload for little kids and brings a sense of excitement and anticipation every day. You could try hiding a few parcels and doing a treasure hunt each day. Make sure the kids get some decent periods of time to play with and enjoy their new toys. There’s nothing more frustrating than having to go off to another relative’s house when you really want to make a Lego model.

Being frugal with food Plan your meals, make sure you estimate your quantities as precisely as you can and only buy what you need. It’s all too easy to go to the supermarket with an open-ended list, so make the list along with amounts and stick to it. Buy quality in few things such as a British, organic and well-reared turkey and use it all. Try the things our mums used to make; turkey sandwiches, casserole, stock and curry. There is no doubt that home-baked mince pies and yule log taste better than shop-bought ones – but the ingredients can be costly and baking can be time consuming (and sometimes disastrous) so focus on cooking a few special items and don’t worry if you find yourself buying everything else in.

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November-December 2011


holidays Low-fare website Skyscanner has found two tricks which can cut the cost of family flights. The first is to check for infant surcharge for under-twos. The second is to look for two singles, rather than a return. Some airlines charge between £30 and £50 for an adult to carry an under-two child on their lap. A child ticket on a low-cost airline costs roughly the same, but comes with the useful extra on-board space and baggage and carry-on allowances.

© suerz - Fotolia.com

Money-saving ways to book family flights

Ryanair does not permit separate seat bookings for a child under two. The other trick — especially on long-haul Asian routes with the flagship airlines — is to buy two singles instead of a return on the exact same airlines and flights. This can save around £350 on an £1800 fare. www.Skyscanner.net

Tips for Family Skiing Holidays Paul and Francesca Ayres moved to Morzine 18 years ago, started a family ski company (Chilly Powder) and had three children. We asked them to tell us about the most important things you should consider when taking your family on a ski holiday. Don’t rush to high altitude resorts because children can sometimes get altitude sickness. It’s also unsafe for babies under the age of 12 months to go up in high cable cars because of the air pressure. Finding a resort with an easy, short airport transfer will be a blessing. Also check that your airport transfer company is properly licensed and has the child car seats you’ll need. While in the transfer vehicle from the airport to your holiday accommodation, try to sit as near to the front of the bus as possible then there’s less chance of the twisty roads making your children sick. It’s pointless wasting money on expensive ski clothes for your children they’ll only outgrow them by next year. Borrow what you can from friends or try TK Maxx in September and October. If your children are attending ski school or childcare, make sure you sew their names into their clothes so they don’t get mixed up with others. If you’re taking a pushchair to use during your holiday, take one with large wheels. Standard chairs will be impossible to push in the snow but it might be that your holiday company has a stash of them for you to borrow. Don’t forget that sun block is just as important on a winter holiday as it is in the summer. Take sun block rather than spray so that you don’t have to take your gloves off to rub it in. For more details about Chilly Powder see www.chillypowder.com

Say hello to the Yoomi... …and goodbye to searching for a café to heat your baby’s bottle when you’re out and about. The bottle and warmer in one from Yoomi can warm your baby’s feed to the natural temperature of breast milk in just 60 seconds. It works using a re-chargeable heat storage pack. Before going out for the day, you charge the heat pack by putting it in boiling water for 25 minutes. That stored heat can be used later to warm the milk. Created by mum-and-dad team Farah and Jim, Yoomi can be charged up to 100 times, is BPA free and has a clever anti-colic teat that makes it perfect for combination feeding or for transitioning your baby to bottle feeding. With its clever energy-saving design, the Yoomi has been nominated as one of the top British inventions of the last decade. Yoomi costs £23.50 from www.yoomi.com, www.johnlewis.com, www.mothercare.com, www.boots.com or www.jojomamanbebe.co.uk. Please mention Families magazine if you contact these companies November-December2011

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15


what’s on

Please always phone before setting out in case details have changed since press deadline... Please send info to our listings editor to be considered: listings@families-LSB.co.uk

What’s on at the Grotto Please also remember to say you saw the event listed in Families London-Surrey Borders. We regularly update our website, so visit www. Families-LSB.co.uk for a more extensive and up-todate guide to events in your local area.

ARAGON PRIMARY SCHOOL

Aragon Road, Morden, Surrey SM4 4QU. creanfamily1@btinternet.com Sat 26 Nov 12.00-3.00pm CHRISTMAS FAIR There will be something of interest to all ages, as well as their Christmas classics such as Santa and the popular ‘Secrets’ room.

BENSON PRIMARY AND NURSERY SCHOOL

West Way, Shirley, Croydon, CR0 8RQ bensonbsa@hotmail.co.uk Sat 12 Nov 11.00 - 3.30pm CHRISTMAS FAIR Lots of fun for all the family...Santa’s Grotto...lots of lovely refreshments and stalls to enjoy.

BOCKETTS FARM, NR. LEATHERHEAD

01372 363764 www.bockettsfarm.co.uk 1 – 24 December SANTA’S MAGICAL HAYBARN Voted one of the top 6 places in the UK to see Santa by ‘The Guardian’. Experience a Magical Christmas at Bocketts Farm, as Father Christmas returns. Children will love to hop on board the Santa Express for the ride to his magical hay barn workshop. Inside, each child will meet Santa and receive a gift. There is no queuing as tickets are bought for a particular time, and you can enjoy the farm while you wait. With twenty five new born lambs expected - you may even see one being born - and two large indoor playbarns, a giant astro slide and trampolines, there is plenty to see and do at the farm. From 1st December, Christmas Trees and wreaths will be on sale, and the Gift Shop selling a great variety of toys, gifts, games and stocking fillers is not to be missed. A huge range of sledges and toboggans will also be on sale too. Visit the website (above) for more details.

CHELSHAM PLACE,

Knights Garden Centres, Chelsham, Surrey, CR6 9DZ 01883 622340 www.knights-gardencentres.co.uk Sun 20 Nov 1.30pm Santa will be arriving and can be visited in his grotto every weekend from then until Christmas Eve Sat 26 Nov 10.00 – 4.00pm Reindeer weekend. Santa’s reindeer and a team of huskies will be visiting. There will also be face painting, a carousel, BBQ and lots more. Visit website of details of all events. 16

CHESSINGTON GARDEN CENTRE

Leatherhead Road, Chessington, KT9 2NG 01372 725 638 www.chessingtongardencentre.co.uk

© Copyright Marilyn Kingwill

We try our best to make sure the information listed is correct, but please always phone before setting out in case details have changed.

19 Nov – 24 Dec SANTA’S MAGICAL WINTER WONDERLAND 26 Nov – 2 Jan CHRISTMAS CIRCUS Saturday, 19 November Santa arrives at Chessington Garden Centre. Santa arrives at 11.00am and will be taking up residence in his all new grotto. Come and visit his Magical Winter Wonderland from 19 November until 24 December. Saturday, 26 November Cirque Normandie will once again be returning with an “all new show” with performances running on selected dates from 26 November until 2 January 2012. The 60 minute, bigger than ever, show includes an international cast of acrobats, aerialists and jugglers, as well as Tolly & Company with new side-splitting comedy and takes place in a centrally heated Big Top. Book tickets for both attractions either online or in store now.

CHESSINGTON WORLD OF ADVENTURES

Leatherhead Road, Chessington KT9 2NE 0870 999 0045 10 & 11, 17 Dec - 2 Jan 2012 Winter Zoo Days with a Christmas touch. Contact them for further information.

DENBIES WINE ESTATE

London Road, Dorking, Surrey, RH5 6AA 01306 876616 www.denbiesvineyard. co.uk All December weekends SANTA’S CELLAR GROTTO All December weekends and the week leading up to Christmas (19th -24th) 10.00am - 4.00pm. £7.00 per child, (accompanying £2.00 includes mince pie). Midweek Group Visits £6.00 per child (groups of 6+). Please reserve in advance.

DOWNSEND SCHOOL

1 Leatherhead Road, Leatherhead, KT22 8TJ Sat 3 Dec 11.00 – 2.00 pm CHRISTMAS FAIR

EPSOM PLAYHOUSE

Ashley Avenue, Epsom, KT18 5AL 01372 742555 / 01372 742227 playhouse@epsom-ewell.gov.uk www.epsomplayhouse.co.uk Wed 7 – Sat 31 Dec SANTA CLAUS & THE CHRISTMAS ADVENTURE A live interactive Christmas show with a traditional ‘grotto’ experience. Tickets from £9.00.

FAIRFIELD HALLS

Park Lane, Croydon, CR9 1DG 020 8688 9291 boxoffice@fairfield.co.uk www. fairfield.co.uk Fri 2 – Fri 30 December SANTA CLAUS & THE CHRISTMAS ADVENTURE The adventure takes place at Santa’s HQ in the North Pole. The Reindeer Sat Nav is programmed and the toys are piled high on the sleigh, then chaos strikes. Rudolph is missing and the elves are misbehaving.... Santa will need the audience’s help to find Rudolph and in return

the children will get to meet him after the show and even receive a present. Don’t forget to bring your camera to capture the magic moment when your little ones meet Father Christmas for the very first time. Tickets from £10.00 (No Booking Fee).

KIDSPACE CROYDON

Unit 3, The Colonnades, 619 Purley Way, Croydon CR0 4RQ 020 8686 0040 www.kidspaceadventures.com Tue 6 Dec 12.00 – 2.00pm Toddler’s Xmas Lunch. £5.00 for Annual and Quarterly pass holders; £5.00 in to addition to admission fee for pay as you go members. Fri 9 Dec 6.00 – 8.30pm Xmas Big Event. There will be games, party dances, fancy dress competition and a pizza buffet. Come and see Santa in his Grotto. £10.00 per ticket in advance; £8.00 for Annual pass members in advance; Adults: free. Weekends 3, 4, 10, 11; Sat 17 - Fri 23 Dec Santa’s Grotto. Open at selected times. A small fee applies. Contact them for more information.

MORDEN HALL PARK

Morden Hall Road, Morden, Surrey, SM4 5JD 020 8545 6850 www.nationaltrust.org.uk/mordenhallpark 3, 4, 10 and 11 December 10.00 – 4.00pm FESTIVE FAYRE Do your Christmas Shopping in the comfort of the Snuff Mill with a wide range of local stallholders. Free admission. Santa will also be there in his grotto. Tickets, which can be purchased from the National Trust shop at Morden or by phone from 1st November, must be booked in advance as presents are personalised. £7.50 per child.

NCT (EPSOM & SUTTON)

Bourne Hall, Spring Street, Ewell, Surrey, KT17 1UF Tamara Hammad 0844 243 6291 sutton@nct.org.uk www.nct.org.uk/branches/sutton-epsom Sat 3 Dec 1.00 - 4.00pm CHRISTMAS FAIR NCT Sutton & Epsom branch will be holding their Christmas Fair. There will be a wide range of stalls, almost all of them coming from the local area and many sell one-off handmade products. Gymboree Cheam, Bugs Soft Play and Tiny Talk will be there to entertain the children during the afternoon, while you shop for unique and beautiful gifts. Entry £3.00 or £2.00 with the flyer which can be downloaded from their website (above).

Please mention Families magazine if you contact these companies Families London-Surrey Borders

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November-December 2011


what’s on

Please always phone before setting out in case details have changed since press deadline... Please send info to our listings editor to be considered: listings@families-LSB.co.uk

THE OAKS CHRISTMAS FAIR

The Oaks Golf Club, Woodmansterne Road, Carshalton SM5 4RN LoveSmallDeco@gmail.com Sat 12 Nov 10.00 – 3.00pm Stalls selling unique crafts and gifts. Some of proceeds to Cystic Fibrosis Trust. £2.00 entrance fee (under 16s free). Email for more information.

Nov until Christmas Eve, in his new look magical Grotto. Every child visiting will receive a quality gift, tailored to gender and age. Prebooking is essential with various time-slots available. Spaces are limited this year, so make sure you don’t miss out. Tickets can be booked online or in-store, by visiting the Grotto Booking Office. Check the website for further details.

THE JOHN FISHER SCHOOL

Peaks Hill, Purley, Surrey CR8 3YP 10 Dec CHRISTMAS EXTRAVAGANZA Firework Display & ‘Christmas Market’

THE ARC, CATERHAM

39 Weston Drive, Caterham, CR3 5XY 01883 330 380 www.the-arc-caterham.co.uk Visit the enchanted Gallery and Red Riding Hood’s Christmas Grotto. Check the website for more information.

Sat 19 Nov 12.40am Santa will be arriving and can be visited in his grotto every weekend from then until Christmas Eve

TULLEYS FARM

Knights Garden Centres, Woldingham, Surrey, CR3 7LA 01883 653142 www.knights-gardencentres.co.uk

Sun 27 Nov 10.00 – 4.00pm Reindeer weekend. Santa’s reindeer and a team of huskies will be visiting. There will also be face painting, a carousel, BBQ and lots more. Visit website of details of all events.

Turners Hill, Crawley, West Sussex, RH10 4PE (Jct:10 M23) 01342 718472 www.tulleyschristmas.co.uk 27 Nov Santa arrives and takes up residence in his log cabin

Royal Russell School, 110 Coombe Lane, Croydon CR0 5RF Sat 26 Nov 1.00 - 4.00pm Christmas Fair to be held in the Main Hall.

27 Nov, 3, 4, 10, 11, 17-24 Dec TULLEYS FARM FAMILY CHRISTMAS Ho Ho Ho! Lots of festive fun for all the family with Santa’s Sleigh Ride, the Elf Toy Factory, Elf Hunt, Christmas Show, Christmas Trees & the freshest local produce in the Farm Shop.

SHOOTING STAR CHASE CRAFT FAIR

Please visit the website for more information and prices. See the advert on p.23 for special discount offer.

ROYAL RUSSELL SCHOOL

Bourne Hall, Ewell Village, Epsom, Surrey, KT17 1UF Sat 12 Nov 10.30 – 3.00pm In addition to many craft stalls there will be raffles, tombolas, a string quartet and Father Christmas will be there. Entry: Adults: £1.00, children: free. All proceeds to be donated to Shooting Star CHASE.

SUTTON ECOLOGY CENTRE FRIENDS’ CHRISTMAS FAIR

Festival Walk, Carshalton SM5 3NY 020 8770 5820 (enquiries) www.sutton.gov.uk, go to E for Ecology Centre.

© Copyright Flickr-Law_Keven

ROSEDENE NURSERY

Sat 26 Nov – 24 Dec FATHER CHRISTMAS’ REINDEER

WHITEHALL, CHEAM

1, Malden Road, Cheam, Surrey. SM3 8QD 020 8643 1236 www.friendsofwhitehallcheam.co.uk Sat 26 Nov 9.30 – 4.00pm MISTLETOE MARKET – PAROCHIAL ROOMS Enjoy relaxed Christmas shopping in the Victorian Village hall - the perfect place to find that ideal gift. Admission is free.

WOODCOTE GREEN GARDEN CENTRE & NURSERIES

Sat 10 Dec 10.00 – 4.00pm All welcome. No need to book, just come along. Stalls selling hand crafted goodies and stocking fillers. Free entry.

Woodmansterne Lane, Wallington, Surrey, SM6 0SU 0208 647 6838 online Booking: www.woodcotegreen.com

November-December2011

020 8669 5187

Rudolph and his friends are free to view and will be available to see during opening times. No booking necessary. From Sat 19 Nov CHRISTMAS PRESENT HUNT COMPETITION AND ANIMATED SCENERY There will be six beautiful Christmas animated displays placed around the store, bringing the wonder and festive spirit of the Grotto to everyone who visits. Visit the website for further details of how to enter this free competition.

From Sat 19 Nov See Father Christmas on 19 & 20 Nov and daily from 26

We constantly update our website at www.families-LSB.co.uk Visit the site for a host of useful informatino and links

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what’s on

Please always phone before setting out in case details have changed since press deadline... Please send info to our listings editor to be considered: listings@families-LSB.co.uk

Pantomimes and Christmas shows We try our best to make sure the information listed is correct, but please always phone before setting out in case details have changed. Please also remember to say you saw the event listed in Families London-Surrey Borders. We regularly update our website, so visit www. Families-LSB.co.uk for a more comprehensive and up-to-date guide to events in your local area.

THE ARC, CATERHAM

39 Weston Drive, Caterham, CR3 5XY 01883 330 380 www.the-arc-caterham.co.uk Tue 13 - Fri 30 Dec RED RIDING HOOD A rich and beautiful re-telling of the story of Little Red Riding Hood. You will journey with her as she meets enchanting creatures, comedy woodcutters and spooky shadows. Suitable for ages four years upwards. Tickets: from £6 (concessions); family ticket (2 + 2): £25.00. Contact the box office or check the website for booking details and times.

CHARLES CRYER STUDIO THEATRE

39 High Street, Carshalton, SM5 3BB 020 8770 6990 www.suttontheatres.co.uk Tue 13 - Sat 24 Dec various times SLEEPING BEAUTY In a castle a Beauty lies sleeping, waiting for her Prince to awaken her. Suitable for audiences aged three to eight years. Tickets: Adult : £10, child: £8. Tue 13 - Sat 24 Dec various times CHRISTMAS ADVENTURES IN NURSERYLAND This special interactive show for under-six-year-olds, features all your favourite Nursery Rhymes in this magical adventure story where you can join in, sing along and be part of the fun. Tickets: Adult : £7.00, child: £5.00

CHURCHILL THEATRE

108 High Street,Bromley BR1 1HA 08448 717 620 (booking fee) www.atgtickets.com/ bromley (booking fee) Fri 2 Dec - Sun 8 Jan 2012 - various times SNOW WHITE AND THE SEVEN DWARFS

THE COLOUR HOUSE CHILDREN’S THEATRE

Merton Abbey Mills, Merantun Way, SW19 2RD 020 8542 5511 www.colourhousetheatre.co.uk

Wed 23 – Fri 25 Nov 7.45pm, Thur Matinee 2.30pm THE SNOW QUEEN

Sat 26 Nov – Sun 29 Jan 2012 2.00pm and 4.00pm. ALADDIN Poor Aladdin is tricked by his evil “uncle” to enter a dangerous cave and look for a magic lamp. Soon he is trapped inside. Will poor Aladdin escape, find love and make his fortune? Of course he will. Suitable for the whole family with a recommended starting age of three years. Online booking available at the website. Adult: £9.00, Child: £7.00

DENBIES WINE ESTATE

London Road, Dorking, Surrey, RH5 6AA 01306 876616 email events@denbiesvineyard.co.uk www.denbiesvineyard.co.uk Sun 11 Dec 11.00am & 2.00pm A CHRISTMAS TALE Tickets: £6.50 per child/accompanying adults £2.50. Prebooking essential

EPSOM PLAYHOUSE

Ashley Avenue, Epsom, KT18 5AL 01372 742555 / 01372 742227 playhouse@epsomewell.gov.uk www.epsomplayhouse.co.uk Friday 9 Dec 7.30pm various times THE SNOW QUEEN

This spectacular production follows the story of Gerda and her quest to find her friend Kay, whom the Snow Queen has placed under an evil spell. £16.00 & £19.00, Concessions £14.00 & £17.00, Family Ticket £60.00 Fri 2 Dec 2011 -Mon 2 Jan 2012 ALADDIN It’s their biggest, best and funniest pantomime ever. Aladdin stars the former East Enders’ villain everyone loves to hate - the fantastic Larry Lamb.

Fri 16 Dec – Sun 8 Jan various times CINDERELLA

Fri 2 - Fri 9 Dec all seats £15, Sat 10 Dec: Mon 2 Jan £18 - £26, Family Ticket £79, Fantastic group offers available. (£1.50 booking fee per ticket)

Wed 7 – Sat 31 Dec SANTA CLAUS & THE CHRISTMAS ADVENTURE A live interactive Christmas show with a traditional ‘grotto’ experience (for more details see entry under Fairfield Halls).Tickets from £9.00

Fri 2 – Fri 30 Dec SANTA CLAUS & THE CHRISTMAS ADVENTURE Do you believe in Santa Claus? Well if you do head down to Fairfield Halls this Christmas for a brand new funfilled show. (see full entry on p16).

FAIRFIELD HALLS

£10 - £14.50, Family Ticket £40, £49, Fantastic group offers available (No Booking Fee)

Park Lane, Croydon CR9 1DG 020 8688 9291 boxoffice@fairfield.co.uk www.fairfield.co.uk Sat 5 Nov 1.00pm & 4.00pm, Sun 6 Nov 4.00pm GOLDILOCKS & THE THREE BEARS Follow Goldilocks as the circus comes to town. This sparkling panto-style show features colourful costumes, lots of lively characters, music and comedy. Adult £9.50, Child £7.50, Family £29.00 (£1.50 booking fee per ticket) Thu 10 Nov 8.00pm COPPELIA The ballet interweaves the romance between Swanhilda and Franz with the story of the dollmaker Coppelius, whose greatest desire is to create a doll with a soul. Great entertainment for all ages.

Sat 3 Dec 11.00am ARTHUR DAVISON FAMILY CONCERT CHRISTMAS FESTIVITIES CONCERT A festive Christmas concert featuring music from Cinderella, Hansel and Gretel, a sleigh ride for Santa Claus and other seasonal pieces. There will also be a performance of some special carols composed by local children as well as traditional carols for the audience. £7.50 (No Booking Fee). Thu 22 Dec 3.00pm THE SNOWMAN: THE LONDON MOZART PLAYERS’ CHRISTMAS FAMILY CONCERT

Adults £18.50 & £19.50, Children £12.50 Tue 15 – Sat 19 Nov 7.00pm, Thu & Sat Mat 2.30pm MR STINK David Walliams, star of Little Britain, has written the smelliest book of all time, which now breaks new ground in this scratch ‘n’ sniff production bringing Mr Stink pongingly to life. Adults £16.00 & £18.00, Children £12.00 & £13.00, Family £50.00 & £55.00, School and Group Deals Available (£1.50 booking fee per ticket).

18

The Snowman (live orchestra with film screening), plus other Christmas favourites. £12.00 - £31.50 (no booking fee).

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Please always phone before setting out in case details have changed since press deadline... Please send info to our listings editor to be considered: listings@families-LSB.co.uk Sat 14 Jan 10.30am & 1.30pm, Sun 15 Jan 3.00pm ONE SNOWY NIGHT A tale from Percy’s Park by Nick Butterworth. One winter’s night it was so cold it began to snow. Percy the Park Keeper always feeds the animals in the park where he lives. But this winter’s night, Percy finds his little friends shivering on the doorstep - they need more than food and he must find a way to help them. Suitable for ages 3+. Adults £12.00, Children £10.00, Family Ticket £40.00 (£1.50 booking fee per ticket).

HARLEQUIN THEATRE

Warwick Quadrant, Redhill, Surrey, RH1 1NN 01737 276 500 or online www.harlequintheatre.co.uk Sat 12 Nov 1.00pm & 3.00pm BOB THE BUILDER A brand new live stage show. The Fixham Theatre is set for a grand re-opening. Local talent Dickie Olivier needs Bob’s help to fix up the stage for his brand new musical. But when Spud decides he wants to be the star of the show, the job doesn’t go exactly to plan. Adult: £14.50, Child: £12.50, Family Ticket (4) £48.00.

This brand new adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen’s classic tale promises to be a playful and tender production, brought to life with delightful music, movement and puppetry. For ages one to five years

much-loved characters. Take a trip back to the magical world of Emily’s shop, as it comes to life through storytelling, original songs and puppetry. Adults: £12.00; Children: £9.00

From £7.00. (either a three to five year old performance or a specially-adapted performance for one to two year olds). Check the website for details of performances.

Wed 7 – Sun 11 Dec CINDERELLA Polka Dot Pantomimes present a production full of panto magic including real ponies pulling Cinders in her carriage. This show is suitable for anyone aged 6-106. Tickets - £12.50/£10.00; family ticket for 4: £40.

11 Nov - 4 Feb 2012 CHARLOTTE’S WEB Wilbur’s no ordinary farmhouse pig and he’d do anything to avoid ending up on the dinner table. But help arrives from the most unlikely of places... a spider’s web, in the corner of the barn. For ages 5-11. From £8.00. Usually two performances daily Tue - Sat, please check the website for details.

SECOMBE THEATRE

42 Cheam Road, Sutton, SM1 2SS 020 8770 6990 www.suttontheatres.co.uk Mon 28 Nov – Thu 1 Dec various times BAGPUSS

Thur 17 Nov. 8.00pm THE NUTCRACKER The magic of Christmas comes alive as Clara dreams that her toys come to life. The spells of mysterious Drosselmeyer, the fearsome battle between rats and toy soldiers, the transformation of the Nutcracker bring together an unforgettable celebration of exquisite dancing and enchanting story. Adult: £17.50, Conc: £16.00, Children (under 16): £11.00 Fri 9 Dec – Mon 2 Jan 2012 SLEEPING BEAUTY This is the story of Princess Aurora, the girl who pricks her finger on a spinning wheel and promptly falls asleep for 100 years, but you can be assured that this will be far from a sleepy production. Vicki Michelle, star of the classic BBC1 hit comedy, ‘Allo, ‘Allo’ will be starring as the Wicked Fairy Carabosse in this enchanting pantomime.

Dingwall Road, Croydon CR0 2NF. 020 8680 4060. www.warehousetheatre.co.uk

An enchanting show for children featuring all the original

Wed 23 - Sat 26 Nov various times JACK AND THE BEANSTALK The world famous panto especially produced for the very young. Please check website for more details and to book. For ages 3+. Adult: £7.50, child: £6.50.

Central London shows Gruffalo. Songs, laughs and scary fun for children aged 3+ and their families. £12.50, £15.50 and limited number of premium seats: £20.00. Win a family ticket in our online competition - see p23

VAUDEVILLE THEATRE

404 Strand, London, WC2R 0NH (Nearest tube: Charing Cross) Box Office – 0844 482 9675 www.nimaxtheatres.com

Fri 9 Dec- Sun 15 Jan. DICK WHITTINGTON This is the rags to riches tale of a young man and his cat on an exciting quest for fame and fortune. Featuring all the traditional pantomime ingredients. Dick Whittington is guaranteed to be full of wonder to delight audiences of all ages. Tickets: £15.25 - £37.50. Kids go half price at certain performances.

POLKA THEATRE

© Copyright Charlotte Cooke

Fri 25 Nov - 8pm / Sat 26 Nov 2.30pm/8.00pm Fri 2 Dec  - 8pm / Sat 3 Dec   -  2.30pm/8.00pm BEAUTY AND THE BEAST Enjoy ‘boo-ing and cheering’ as the characters bring the story to life - a great family panto held locally and proceeds are supporting Kingston Samaritans.

WAREHOUSE THEATRE FOR KIDS, CROYDON

The Broadway, Wimbledon, London SW19 1QG 0844 871 7646 (booking fee) www.atgtickets.com/ wimbledon (booking fee)

To 18 Feb 2012 THE UGLY DUCKLING

Hook Parish Hall, 280 Hook Road, Chessington KT9 1PF 020 8397 3515 (Box Office) www.stpaulsplayershook. webs.com

Adult: £7; child & senior citizen: £6 (group concessions/ birthday parties - please enquire)

NEW WIMBLEDON THEATRE

240 The Broadway, Wimbledon, SW19 1SB 020 8543 4888 boxoffice@polkatheatre.com www. polkatheatre.com

ST PAUL’S PLAYERS

LYRIC THEATRE

Shaftesbury Avenue, London W1D 7ES 0844 412 4661(bookings) www.nimaxtheatres.com www.gruffalolive.com

Sun 18 Dec - Sun 8 Jan 2012 various performances POTTED PANTO CBBC’s Dan and Jeff return for a second festive season of Potted Panto which features eight classic pantomimes in just eighty minutes. That’s one whole panto more than last year. Join them for a spectacular, silly and splendid celebration of a truly great British theatre tradition and enjoy eight shows for the price of one this Christmas. Adult: From £20.00, under 16s: from £15.00, Family ticket for 4 ( to include at least 1 under 16): £60.00 (prices inclusive of restoration levy; exclusive of booking fees). Check website for details of times and prices.

Wed 23 Nov – Sun 15 Jan THE GRUFFALO The smash hit show returns by popular demand. A musical adaptation of the award-winning picture book by Julia Donaldson & Axel Scheffler. Follow the quickthinking Mouse into the deep, dark wood in this magical and musical modern classic. Discover what happens when he comes face to face with wheeler-dealer Fox, an eccentric old Owl and a maraca-shaking Snake, and, of course the very creature he imagined…..The

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what’s on

Please always phone before setting out in case details have changed since press deadline... Please send info to our listings editor to be considered: listings@families-LSB.co.uk

CHRISTMAS LIGHTS SWITCH ON CROYDON

www.croydontowncentre.com BIG CHRISTMAS SWITCH-ON

full Christmas lights display. Visit the website for more information.

DENBIES WINE ESTATE

Thursday 17 November - activities from 12.00pm; lighting ceremony at 6.30pm Former EastEnders star Larry Lamb will be taking centre stage in Croydon when he switches on the Town Centre’s Christmas Lights.

London Road, Dorking, Surrey, RH5 6AA

The actor, who will be starring in this year’s festive pantomime Aladdin at Croydon’s Fairfield Halls, will perform the ceremony outside the main entrance to the Whitgift Centre at 6.30pm alongside fellow cast members Nathaniel Morrison and Rosa O’Reilly, plus Santa and the Mayor of Croydon, Councillor Graham Bass.

CHRISTMAS LIGHT SWITCH ON & LATE NIGHT SHOPPING A treat for all the family. Spectacular firework display, funfair rides, free mulled wine & mince pies

The Croydon Business Improvement District (BID) will once again be packing in the crowds for the BIG Christmas Switch-On, which will be the climax of a day of entertainment and activities in the Town Centre. The fun will get under way at noon outside Allders, Marks & Spencer and JJB Sports. Larry, Santa and the Mayor will be joined for the event by the winner of the BID’s 2011 Design a Christmas Light competition, which was open to all primary schoolchildren in the London Borough of Croydon. One lucky child will see their design for a Christmas light created for real and switched-on as part of the Town’s

01306 876616 email events@denbiesvineyard.co.uk www.denbiesvineyard.co.uk. Mon 28 November, from 5.00pm

Dates and details to be confirmed.

There will be lots of party dances and games for children and a parade of costume characters including Cinderella in her carriage pulled by a team of real ponies.

KINGSTON

ROSEHILL, SUTTON

Thursday 17 Nov 3.30pm - 6.30pm Father Christmas will be switching on the Christmas Lights and there will be free street entertainment.

Friday 25 November 4.30 – 6.30pm The lights will be turned on at 5.15pm by local boxer Bobby Wells.

SUTTON

There will be choirs from Abbey and Tweeddale Primary Schools, various activities including bucking bronco, Santa’s Grotto, and stalls including cakes, balloons, candy floss, bags, Mike’s Kitchen free tasters, and a photographer who will be on hand - and will donate to St Raphael’s Hospice if you purchase snaps on the night.

EPSOM

www.sutton.gov.uk/towncentre Thursday 17 November 4.00 – 7.00pm Entertainment starts in Sutton High Street at 4.00pm with community music on Trinity Square stage – carols and festive songs. The Christmas tree will be in Trinity Square and the lights will be switched on at 6.00pm by the Mayor of Sutton and Father Christmas. Saturday 19 November Poppy the Penguin, Al-Freezze the Snowman and their new friend Flo the Eskimo will be in the High Street.

WIMBLEDON WINTER WONDERLAND www.wimbledontowncentre.co.uk

Thursday 24 November 5.00 – 8.00pm There will be fireworks, a parade, live music, live dance, Santa Claus, AFC Wimbledon, gift and food stalls and much more for all the family.

DIARY DATES FOR PARENTS CHEEKY MONKEY NEARLY NEW BABY AND CHILDREN SALE

The Chocolate Festival returns to Southbank Centre for its annual Christmas celebration.

Banstead Youth Centre, (Sure Start Behind Library) The Horseshoe, Bolters Lane, Banstead SM7 2BQ

MAKE A DOOR WREATH WORKSHOP

07949 442 627 cheekymonkeysales@virginmedia.com

Whitehall, 1 Malden Road, Cheam, SM3 8QD

Sun 20 Nov 10.00 – 12.00pm Selling baby equipment, clothes, toys, maternity wear, cots, buggies and much more at bargain prices. Refreshments and parking available. Admission: £1.00

Thu 8 Dec 10.30 - 12.30 Make a gorgeous door wreath for Christmas with curator and interior designer Lydia Coelho. All materials will be provided including a wicker wreath; and there will be tea, coffee and mince pies to keep everyone going. Suitable for adults only. Booking essential. £15 (including materials).

Contact Rachel for more information.

CHRISTMAS AT THE ARC The Arc, 39 Weston Drive, Caterham, CR3 5XY 01883 330 380 parties@the-arc-caterham.co.uk www.the-arc-caterham.co.uk 25 Nov and 9, 10 and 16 Dec 8.00 – Midnight Eat, drink and be very merry at The Arc this Christmas with a three course festive dinner, including a range of options and Christmas crackers, followed by coffee and mince pies in the Arc’s glass-topped gallery, followed by disco until Midnight. There will be games and competitions throughout the evening and friendly staff on hand to make sure your night goes with a sparkle. Free overnight parking. Shared Party night prices start from £23.00 per head. Visit the website for more details.

020 8643 1236

WINTER WREATHS WORKSHOP Sutton Ecology Centre, Festival Walk, Carshalton SM5 3NY 020 8770 5820 (enquiries); sec@sutton.gov.uk or 020 8770 5822 (bookings) www.sutton.gov.uk, go to E for Ecology Centre Sat 10 Dec 10.00 – 12.00pm Enjoy collecting materials to make your own winter wreath from willow, holly and other found items. Dress them up with bows and ribbon. Cost: £5.00 per adult. Booking essential.

CHRISTMAS CHOCOLATE FESTIVAL Southbank Centre Square Friday 9 December 2011 - Sunday 11 December 2011 20

Please wear suitable outdoor clothing.

PAMPER ME PRETTY The Oaks Golf Club, Woodmansterne Road, Carshalton Surrey SM5 4AN 07717 311 019 Fri 25 Nov 7.00 - 10.30pm Pamper and Shopping evening raising funds for Sutton Women’s Centre www.suttonwomen.co.uk. All Treatments £5-£15. Come start your Christmas Shopping. For more information contact Claire Bowdery

REIGATE CRAFT & GIFT FAIR Somers Hall, Slipshoe Street,Reigate RH2 9HU 07881906861 kwcraftfairs@aol.com www.kwcraftfairs.moonfruit.com 5 Nov & 3 Dec 10.00 – 4.00pm Stalls showcasing local designers & makers with a few regulars but many of the stalls changing each month. For further details contact Kirstin Wood.

For details of many more events in the Epsom, Sutton and Croydon area, including Firework displays, Christmas Fairs, Santa’s Grottos and other local activities, please see our website at www.Families-LSB.co.uk. Please remember to mention that you found out about the event through Families London-Surrey Borders magazine.

Please mention Families magazine if you contact these companies Families London-Surrey Borders

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November-December 2011


what’s on

Please always phone before setting out in case details have changed since press deadline... Please send info to our listings editor to be considered: listings@families-LSB.co.uk

Please mention Families magazine if you contact these companies November-December2011

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what’s on

Please always phone before setting out in case details have changed since press deadline... Please send info to our listings editor to be considered: listings@families-LSB.co.uk

DIARY DATES FOR FAMILIES

Please remember to say you saw the event listed in Families London-Surrey Borders.

WEEKEND 12/13 NOVEMBER BANK OF ENGLAND MUSEUM

Bartholomew Lane, just off Threadneedle Street, London EC2R 8AH 020 7601 5545 www.bankofengland.co.uk/museum 12 Nov 11.00 - 5.00pm. Last entry 4.30pm LORD MAYOR’S SHOW Face painters bring Ratty, Mole, Badger and Toad to life. Professional make-up artists will turn young visitors into the well-known characters from The Wind in the Willows, whose author, Kenneth Grahame, was Secretary of the Bank from 1898-1908. Museum opening hours: 10.00 - 5.00pm, Mon - Fri. Last entry 4.45pm. Closed on Public and Bank Holidays except for certain special events.

BOURNE HALL MUSEUM CHILDREN’S CLUB Bourne Hall, Spring Street, Ewell, Surrey, KT17 1UF 020 8394 1734 dbrooks@epsom-ewell.gov.uk Sat 12 Nov 1.00 – 2.30pm AWAKING THE PAST

for families. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Booking essential. Please wear suitable outdoor clothing. Cost: £3.50 per person or £10 per family.

WEEKEND 10/11 DECEMBER BOURNE HALL MUSEUM CHILDREN’S CLUB Bourne Hall, Spring Street, Ewell, Surrey, KT17 1UF 020 8394 1734 dbrooks@epsom-ewell.gov.uk Sat 10 Dec 1.00 – 2.30pm A VICTORIAN CHRISTMAS Meet a Victorian couple who will tell you how they celebrated Christmas and how the Victorians invented the modern Christmas, from trees to cards. For ages 8+. £4.00 per child.

WEEKEND 17/18 DECEMBER

Thu 22 Dec 10.15 – 4.15pm (approx. timings)

BANK OF ENGLAND MUSEUM

Bartholomew Lane, just off Threadneedle Street, London EC2R 8AH 020 7601 5545 www.bankofengland.co.uk/museum 19 – 23, 28 -30 Dec 10.00 - 4.30pm

THURSDAY 22, DECEMBER www.CathedralsExpress.co.uk

Pickup from Purley Station

WHITE CLIFFS CHRISTMAS LUNCH TOUR A special treat for those who love steam trains. For the first time in many years, the Cathedrals Express will call at Purley for a day trip through the Kent countryside. The train, which starts from Victoria at 9.45am, will pick up at Purley at about 10.15am; continue through the heart of Kent to the Thanet Coast before turning south to pass through the Cinque Ports, along one of the most picturesque railway lines in Southern Britain; then skirt the base of the White Cliffs of Dover before returning to Purley. Various classes of accommodation and catering are available, with prices starting from £55 per person. Visit the website for details and to book.

POLKA THEATRE

240 The Broadway, Wimbledon SW19 1SB 020 8543 4888 www.polkatheatre.com THE UGLY DUCKLING AND FRIENDS FESTIVE FUN - WORKSHOP Details as for 21 Dec entry

OLYMPIC COUNTDOWN

10.00 -1.00pm

1, Malden Road, Cheam, Surrey. SM3 8QD 020 8643 1236 www.friendsofwhitehallcheam.co.uk Sat 3 Dec 2.30 - 4.30

22

THE UGLY DUCKLING AND FRIENDS FESTIVE FUN- WORKSHOP Three to four years (Foundation) 9.45 - 10.45am

CATHEDRALS EXPRESS STEAM TRAINS

WHITEHALL, CHEAM

HANDMADE SEASONAL DECORATIONS WORKSHOP Find out how to make your own Christmas decorations at home this year, out of sustainable materials. Suitable

Wed 21 & Thu 22 Dec

MAKE A CHRISTMAS STOCKING - WORKSHOP Make your own Christmas stocking to hang on the fireplace this year. All materials provided, including an assortment of fun decorations. Suitable for seven- 12 year olds. Booking essential. £8 per child (to include materials)

WEEKEND 3/4 DECEMBER

Sun 4 Dec 2.00 -3.30pm

240 The Broadway, Wimbledon SW19 1SB 020 8543 4888 www.polkatheatre.com

Sat 10 Dec 2.30 - 4.30

MAKE A STAINED GLASS WINDOW WORKSHOP Make a pretty stained glass effect window for your home. Choose from a range of designs and get creative with colour. Suitable for seven to 12 year olds. Booking recommended. £6 per child (to include materials)

Festival Walk, Carshalton SM5 3NY 020 8770 5820 (enquiries); sec@sutton.gov.uk or 020 8770 5822 (bookings) www.sutton.gov.uk, go to E for Ecology Centre

POLKA THEATRE

Join The Ugly Duckling and some other fairytale friends to celebrate the festive season in this two day drama and craft workshop. £25.00 per child.

Sat 17 Dec 2.30 - 4.30

SUTTON ECOLOGY CENTRE

£5.00, ShowCard £4.50 (no booking fee)

Four to five years (Reception) 11.30 – 12.30pm

1, Malden Road, Cheam, Surrey. SM3 8QD 020 8643 1236 www.friendsofwhitehallcheam.co.uk

1, Malden Road, Cheam, Surrey. SM3 8QD 020 8643 1236 www.friendsofwhitehallcheam.co.uk

MAKE CHRISTMAS DECORATIONS WORKSHOP Make a selection of decorations for your Christmas tree. Choose from a range of designs and fun materials. Suitable for seven to 16 year olds. Booking recommended. £8 per child (to include materials)

FILM: MR POPPER’S PENGUINS The life of a businessman begins to change after he inherits six penguins, and as he transforms his apartment into a winter wonderland, his professional side starts to unravel.

WHITEHALL, CHEAM

WHITEHALL, CHEAM

A look at Environmental Archaeology. Discover how pollen, seeds, bones and the humble snail help build a picture of the past and see how the evidence is collected on site. Did you know that it is possible to tell which part of the year a rubbish pit was in use? For ages 8+. £4.00 per child.

2.30pm

Get a head start for 2012 by adding your own designs of gold, banknotes and other objects from the Bank’s collections to a calendar to take home. Museum opening hours: 10.00 - 5.00pm, Mon - Fri. Last entry 4.45pm. Closed on Public and Bank Holidays except for certain special events.

WEDNESDAY 21, DECEMBER FAIRFIELD HALLS

Park Lane, Croydon, CR9 1DG 020 8688 9291 boxoffice@fairfield.co.uk www. fairfield.co.uk

© Copyright Teresa Merfin

Please always phone before setting out in case details have changed since press deadline or we got it wrong.....

CHARLOTTE’S WEB PUPPET MAKING MORNING - WORKSHOP Spend the morning transforming gloves into spider puppets, and create simple marionettes and puppet farm creatures inspired by the show. For ages five to seven. £20.00 per child.

BOURNE HALL MUSEUM CHILDREN’S CLUB Bourne Hall, Spring Street, Ewell, Surrey, KT17 1UF 020 8394 1734 dbrooks@epsom-ewell.gov.uk 7 Jan 1.00 – 2.30pm MEET THE WITCHFINDER GENERAL Meet Matthew Hopkins, the self-styled Witchfinder General . Learn about his career and life, and the fear of witches during the Civil War. He is believed to be responsible for the death of 3000 women. For ages 8+. £4.00 per child.

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November-December 2011


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Please always phone before setting out in case details have changed since press deadline... Please send info to our listings editor to be considered: listings@families-LSB.co.uk

MORE at Families-LSB website

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Families-LSB Nov-Dec 2011