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Local Groups and Events FREE WINE VOUCHER - PAGE 27 The Biggest Motoring Flops November Gardening Advice Delicious Chicken Dhansak Recipe And of course: Bursting With Local Businesses

Widnes Magazine

The Little Magazine With The Big Distribution

Issue 35 Nov & Dec ‘11

What’s Inside This Issue?

Reliably Received by 10,000 Homes in Widnes & the Surrounding Areas

Win

£50 CASH Inside

!

A new element for Widnes... To find out more about the exciting new restaurant now open in Widnes, Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

on Pages 10-11. Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

1


We a r e open

7 D AY S

9 a m t o la t e !

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e ve ry be st As us ua l w e ha ve th n. .. pr em iu m se le ct io s• • No n- dr op va rie tie • • Tr ad iti on al • Po tt ed

DAY PLACE YOUR ORDER TO

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£2

D EL IV ER Y JU ST TO WA 8 PO ST CO D ES

Hu ge ra ng e of de ht s an d in do or & ou td oo rs lig ho lly wr ea th s

B R IN G T H E K ID S TO S E E

S A N TA & H IS L IV E R E IN D E E R S Open Weekends in December 11am - 4pm

0151 424 2999

Cronton Garden Centre, Cronton Road, Cronton, Widnes, WA8 5QJ


EDITOR’S PAGE

Welcome... Hello and a big welcome to the November and December edition of Widnes Local – your free, independent community magazine! Where has the year gone? It seems that if you blink for a moment, winter is here and the year is almost over. One minute you’re enjoying the last residues of summer and next thing you know is, you’re knee deep in Christmas shopping lists! Still there’s the comfort of drawing the curtains, lighting the fire (a log burner would be heavenly…) and snuggling up with a cuppa and your favourite book. Some exciting news from Local Mags HQ - we’ve launched two fab new magazines for Warrington – Warrington South Local and Warrington West Local. So in total the Local Magazines now go directly to a fabulous 40,000 homes! So if you’re a local business and want to reach directly (we guarantee delivery) to potential customers throughout the area then give us a call for a no obligation chat – we don’t do any heavy sell, we don’t need to (and we’re not very good at it). Some other news, the design bods at Local Mags HQ have a bit of a rejig with the magazine

Contact us: 4

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

this month and we now have ‘sections’ for our adverts and editorial features, such as Motoring, Gardens, Food & Drink etc. We think you fabby readers will find it much easier to find just what you’re looking for. Of course, you can still use the index too. As ever we’d appreciate your feedback on our changes, we do listen to what you want. In this edition you’ll find a great column by our regular student columnist Laura on page 8. And for the green fingered among you Pippa Greenwood advises us about heavenly hedges. I’m not much of a gardener myself so I pick up loads from this regular feature - see it on page 50. What do you think of our fab front cover this month? If you’re a budding photographer, why not send us a local photo, and maybe we could use it in a future issue? I just want to take this opportunity to wish you (maybe a bit early) a very Happy Christmas and a very Healthy and Properous New Year.

The Local Mags Team

Competition Congratulations go to Vivienne Carr who won our last competition! Vivienne correctly spotted on which advert the symbol was hidden in and is now the proud winner of a £25 Marks & Spencer Gift Card.

WIN £50 CASH with this month’s competition: This pink jigsaw piece is hidden in the magazine somewhere! To enter, find which advert it is hidden on and let us know: 1. Your name 2. Your postcode 3. Your contact number 4. Which advert the symbol is hidden on!

£

Email us at info@widneslocal.co.uk or call us on 01928 739607 to enter.

Deadline

For the next issue, the deadline is 20th December 2011.

t: 01928 739607 or 07734 037835 | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk /localmags | /localmags | Visit us online: www.thelocalmags.co.uk www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

5


Now in stock at: Neil & Barker Jewellers

0151 424 3343 1 Greenoaks, Widnes, WA8 6UD


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LIFE WITH LAURA

Life With Laura

Our regular student columnist fills us in on what she’s been up to this month... Hello to all of you, I hope this article finds you well. I can’t believe that this is my final article for 2011! Scary, isn’t it? This year has simply flown by, it’s been nearly impossible to keep up with everything that has happened, nationally, internationally and even locally. The face of Widnes is constantly changing and upgrading. Yes, you may have guessed by now, but I’m referring to the new bowling alley, quasar, cinema and, more importantly, the opening of Frankie and Benny’s! I was very excited to hear about this, and when it officially opened I jumped for joy – unfortunately, I haven’t had the chance to visit the establishment yet, but I hope to soon enough. I also think that this is a wonderful employment opportunity from some of the young people in Widnes who hope to fund their university accommodation and degrees. We’re well into October now, and I think it’s an appropriate time for me to talk about the new lower sixth students at 8

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

my college. I would like to give them a big thank you for being cooperative with the upper sixth, including myself, and credit them on their maturity. Contrary to popular belief, the first half term in college is actually quite stressful – trying to assert yourself among others, trying to make new friends, and getting used to your surroundings on top of homework, coursework and the introduction of three or four brand new courses is quite the abrasive experience. I’m glad that the lower sixth are doing well, and would like to officially wish them a fantastic, welldeserved half term break! Recently, I have been looking at universities around England. In fact, I paid for my UCAS and sent it off to five different universities just the other day, on the 12th of October. Visiting universities such as Chester, York and Liverpool was a great experience for me. Not only were they wonderful in the sense that I had the opportunity to establish my surroundings, be introduced to

my courses and my teachers and visit the library of each establishment (yes, the library is VERY important), but it was also a massive reality check. To think, in one year, I could be studying at a university in order to become more knowledgeable and to discover new ways of thinking/ working, away from my home, friends and family, is quite daunting. But while looking at these universities I realised something – it’s just another part of life. So, the moral of the story is that you shouldn’t be afraid of the future. Of course I’ll miss my friends, family and the setting I grew up in. But we should all look forward to new experiences. Right now, more than anything, I’m looking forward to Christmas! So I’ll finish here, and before I forget, I’ll wish you all a merry and safe Christmas holiday. See you in 2012! Laura x

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LIFESTYLE

Heavenly Hair We all know that great hair is the best accessory you can ever have, so that’s why it’s so important to keep it in tip-top condition and looking fabulous. For most of us, this is easier said than done. With so many things ‘out to get’ our hair, just keeping it frizz-free and vaguely manageable from day to day is an effort. The prospect of attaining any sort of smooth silky condition seems unlikely. But there is hope. This winter signals the perfect time to initiate a dedicated and committed hair-care routine. Investing time, patience and energy in your locks means that you can be rewarded with glossy lengths of Rapunzel-esque proportions. The main problem we all face, especially at this time of year, is the damage caused by the elements. Harsh weather conditions outside and centrally heated rooms inside sap moisture from the hair, leaving it dry, split and unsightly. HOLD THE HEAT But what makes it far worse is the damage caused by trying to achieve a smooth finish when we reach for the straighteners and turn up the heat. It’s a quick fix for now but in the long run it’s a problem. Regular use of styling tools weakens the hair, causing it to split 10

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

and break. Applying a good quality heat protecting mist onto your lengths does help to limit damage, but the bottom line is that any intense heat isn’t a good thing. So cut back where you can. Blow-drying is undeniably essential for adding lift, volume and shape to your tresses, but unfortunately can prove to be as damaging as any other heated tool. It’s essential to dry on a cool heat setting and always allow hair to ‘towel-dry’ for as long as possible beforehand. WET IS WEAK Be extra careful with wet hair, as it’s at its weakest. Using a good quality hairbrush will ensure easy styling – particularly natural bristle brushes, as these will be extra gentle and encourage shine. YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR Investing in quality products from your hairdresser may be expensive but will certainly have a lasting impact. It’s always best to seek professional advice on establishing a tailored product plan for your hair. Although most come with a hefty price tag, protein-rich shampoos and conditioners are excellent at re-building the structure of your hair and creating strength and shine.

It’s easy to become cynical about products and it’s certainly true that a lot of money can be wasted on them, but find the one that’s right for you and you’ll never go back. What’s more, better products need only be used sparingly as they are packed full of rich ingredients, so they last a long time and can offer better value. HEALTH FOR YOUR HAIR Good health is essential for good hair. We all feel run-down at this time of year and with the annual bouts of colds and flu ready to strike, hair can become dull, lifeless and lacking in the nutrients required to look its absolute silky and shiny best. Stocking up on vitamins, fresh fruit and vegetables, not to mention protein rich foods, lots of omega 3 and sources of iron, all go a long way to nourish the hair from the inside out. It takes around three months to see the effect of a healthy diet on your hair, but the results are fantastic and well worth the wait, so be patient. A healthy head of hair is the starting point that everyone needs to make the most of their colour, cut or style. So transform yours now and never worry about a bad hair day again.

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z

O’Hares

Barber Shop Find us in

Widnes Market

The team at O’Hares would like to thank all of their customers for their business throughout the year!

Welcomes customers old & new!

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Mon-Fri: 9.00am-5.00pm (Closed Tues) Sat: 8.30am - 4.30pm

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Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

11


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Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

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Extra Wide, Extra Deep, Extra Roomy Footwear. 162-164 Albert Road, 162-164 Widnes, Albert WA8Road, 6LJ Widnes, WA8 6 162-164 Albert Road, Widnes, WA8 6LJ At our showroom here in Widnes we have a range of shoes,slippers, socks and hosiery. Tel: Booster 0151 420 1352Tel: 0151 420 1352 Tel:Local 0151 420 1352 Also v3. Your Your Local Supplier Supplier of :the ofCirculation : Times: Shop Mon Opening – Fri 9.30am Times: 5pm– Sat Fri 9.30am 9.30 – 1pm – 5pm S Shop Opening Times:Shop MonOpening – Fri 9.30am – 5pm Sat 9.30 – 1pm–Mon Mobility Mobility Aids Aids

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Extra Wide, Extra Deep, Extra Roomy Footwear Newlyn Healthcare is a local company based Extra in Widnes supplying wide range of Wide, Extra Deep, Extra Roomy a Footwear products to the NHS, Nursing / Care Homes and to the general public via our Adult Aprons Adult Aprons Velour Velour Pads Chair Pads Disposable Disposable Bed Pads Bedwith Pads Tucks with Tucks showroom at 162-164Chair Albert Road Widnes, WA8Bed 6LJPadsBed Pads

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162-164 Albert Road, Widnes, WA8 6LJ Cosyfeet Cosyfeet Cosyfeet Tel: 0151 420 1352 Tel: 0151 420Extra 1352 Extra Wide, Extra Deep, Extra Roomy Footwear Extra Extra Wide, Wide, Extra Extra Deep, Deep, Extra Roomy Roomy Footwear Shop Opening Times: Mon – Fri Footwear 9.30am – 5pm Sat 9.30 – 1pm Shop Opening Times: Mon – Fri 9.30am – 5pm Sat 9.30 – 1pm

Come and see our full range of products available 162-164 Albert Road, Widnes, WA8 6LJ – 1pm 162-164 Albert Road, Widnes, : WA8 6LJ 162-164 Albert Albert Road, Road, Widnes, Widnes, WA8 WA8 6LJ 6LJ Shop Opening Hours Mon-Fri 9am – 162-164 5pm, Sat 9.30am Tel: 0151 420 1352 Tel: 0151 420 1352 Tel: Tel: 0151 0151 420 420 1352 1352 Visit website at9.30www.newlynhealthcare.co.uk Shop Opening Times: Mon –FriFri 9.30am –5pm 5pm Sat 9.30 –1pm 1pm Shop Opening Times:our Mon – Fri 9.30am – 5pm Sat – 1pm Shop Shop Opening Opening Times: Times: Mon Mon ––Fri 9.30am 9.30am ––5pm Sat Sat 9.30 9.30 ––1pm Breathable Breathable Mattress/Duvet/Pillow Mattress/Duvet/Pillow Protectors Protectors Cosyfeet Cosyfeet Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local Extra Extra Wide,Wide, Extra Extra Deep,Deep, Extra Extra Roomy Roomy Footwear Footwear

Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

13


MOBILE HAIRDRESSING MOBILE Local and reliable service HAIR SOLUTIONS

Ladies Cut from £7.50 Cut and Blow Dry from £15.50 Blow Wave from £11.50 Perms from £30.00 Colours from £36 (inc Cut & Blow Dry) Pensioners Cut £6.50 Cut and Blow Dry/Set £14.50 More prices on request

www.hairsolutions-widnes.co.uk

Call Sue on

07751 834046

14

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


Darren Darren Tyrer Tyrer was was previously previously aa senior senior stylist/director stylist/director ofof Andrew Andrew Collinge Collinge in in Darren Darren Tyrer Tyrer was was previously athe a senior senior stylist/director stylist/director ofof Andrew Andrew Collinge Collinge in in Liverpool. Liverpool. After After 23previously 23 years years in in the hairdressing hairdressing industry, industry, he he decided decided toto take take Darren Darren Tyrer Tyrer was was previously previously athe a senior senior stylist/director stylist/director ofof Andrew Andrew Collinge Collinge in in Liverpool. Liverpool. After After 23 23 years years in in the hairdressing hairdressing industry, industry, he he decided decided to to take take the the plunge plunge and and open open hishis own own salon. salon. The The stunning stunning conversion conversion ofof the the old old Liverpool. Liverpool. After After 23 23 years years inown in the the hairdressing hairdressing industry, industry, he he decided decided to to take take the the plunge plunge and and open open his his own salon. salon. The The stunning stunning conversion conversion of of the the old old Post Post Offi Offi cece building building in in Cronton Cronton now now houses houses hishis salon salon that that prides prides itself itself on on the the plunge plunge and and open open hisCronton his own own salon. salon. The The stunning stunning conversion conversion ofof the the old old Post Post Offi Offi ce ce building building in in Cronton now now houses houses his his salon salon that that prides prides itself itself on on offering offering styling styling worthy worthy ofof aa city city centre centre salon salon right right atat your your convenience. convenience. Post Post Offi Offi ce ce building building in in Cronton now now houses houses his his salon salon that that prides prides itself itself onon offering offering styling styling worthy worthy ofCronton of aa city city centre centre salon salon right right atat your your convenience. convenience. offering offering styling styling worthy worthy ofof aM a city salon right atat your your convenience. convenience. M Ecity EETcentre E Tcentre HT EH ETsalon ETA EM A Mright MM E EETE T HT EH ET ETA EM AM MM E EETE T HT EH ET ETA EM AM

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Gemma Gemma Katie Katie Gemma Gemma Katie Katie Gemma Gemma Katie Katie

We We now now offer offer ‘BOTOX ‘BOTOX forfor HAIR’ HAIR’ We We now now offer offer ‘BOTOX ‘BOTOX forfor HAIR’ HAIR’ Rewind Rewind years years of‘BOTOX of damage damage with with this this We We now now offer offer ‘BOTOX forfor HAIR’ HAIR’ Rewind Rewind years years ofof damage damage with with this this fantastic fantastic treatment treatment Rewind Rewind years years ofof damage damage with with this this fantastic fantastic treatment treatment fantastic fantastic treatment treatment We We Now Now Stock Stock L’Oreal L’Oreal Professionnel Professionnel We We Now Now Stock Stock L’Oreal L’Oreal Professionnel Professionnel This This top top of of the the range range selection selection ofof products products We We Now Now Stock Stock L’Oreal L’Oreal Professionnel Professionnel This This top top ofyou of the the range range selection selection ofof products products can can help help you continue continue and and maintain maintain salon salon This This top top ofyou of the the range range selection selection ofof products products can can help help you continue continue and maintain maintain salon salon styling styling in in your your home home and can can help help you you continue continue and maintain maintain salon salon styling styling in in your your home home and styling styling in in your your home home

Claire Claire Claire Claire Claire Claire

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S AS M MA T T S S I I S S R R A A H H M M CCHHRRI SI ST M T S S A A M C CHHRnow T T S S I I R Book Book now for for your your C C now Book Book nowfor foryour your Christmas Christmas Book Book now nowfor foryour your Christmas Christmas appointments appointments Christmas Christmas appointments appointments appointments appointments Don’t Don’tforget forgetGHDs GHDs

Don’t Don’tforget forgetGHDs GHDs make make great great Don’t Don’t forget forget GHDs GHDs make makegreat great gifts gifts make makegreat great gifts gifts gifts gifts “Although “Although I was I was aa bitbit nervous, nervous, I fancied I fancied aa new new look... look... Darren’s Darren’s staff staff took took the the time time “Although “Although Idiscuss was Idiscuss was aa bit bit nervous, nervous, I fancied I and fancied a a new new look... look... Darren’s Darren’s staff staff took took the the time time with with me me toto different different styles styles and I’m I’m chuffed chuffed with with my my new new style!” style!” “Although “Although Idiscuss was Idiscuss was aa bit bit nervous, nervous, I fancied I and fancied a a new new look... look... Darren’s Darren’s staff staff took took the the time time with with me me toto different different styles styles and I’m I’m chuffed chuffed with with my my new new style!” style!” Sarah Sarah Miller Miller with with me me to to discuss discuss different different styles styles and and I’m I’m chuffed chuffed with with my my new new style!” style!”

Sarah Sarah Miller Miller Sarah Sarah Miller Miller

Gift GiftVouchers VouchersAvailable! Available! Gift Gift Vouchers Vouchers Available! Available! 431 431 Cronton Cronton Road, Road, Widnes Widnes WA8 WA8 5QG 5QG Gift Gift Vouchers Vouchers Available! Available! 431 431 Cronton Cronton Road, Road, Widnes Widnes WA8 WA8 5QG 5QG T: 431 T:0151 0151 422 422 8384 8384 431 Cronton Cronton Road, Road, Widnes Widnes WA8 WA8 5QG 5QG T: T:0151 0151422 4228384 8384 T: T:0151 0151422 4228384 8384


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Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


THE

Unicorn GALLERY LTD

One of the UK’s leading Fine Art Galleries, with a friendly and relaxed atmosphere A family business run by Peter Hart & daughter Rebecca. The Unicorn Gallery offers a unique selection of the highest quality paintings by the most talented artists.

Kerry Darlington ‘Petite Tree of Tranquillity with Autumn Leaves & Butterfly’ Original £540.00

Steven Scholes ‘The Transporter Bridge 1908’ Original Oil £575.00 Signed Ltd Edition Print £75.00

FRAMING

The Unicorn Gallery offers a bespoke framing service to conservation standards. Whether it’s reframing a painting you have seen in one of the galleries to suit your décor or a precious family photo, we have the expertise along with a large variety of mouldings to help you pick the perfect frame.

Paul Ehlen ‘Embrace’ Original Sculpture £395.00

Opening Times: 9am - 5pm Closed Sundays & Thursdays 38 Victoria Road, Widnes, Cheshire, WA8 7RJ • Tel: 0151 4951194 www.originalpaintings.com Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

17


LEISURE

Get your emails organised The amount of online communications made by email continues to increase despite the impact of social media like Facebook and Twitter. Certainly, for business purposes email is an essential tool. Frequently, it’s the only way some people can be contacted, especially out of normal business hours. Emails can be legally binding in contract disputes and are certainly very helpful in resolving disagreements between customers and suppliers. But if you don’t keep your inbox in order, your emails can become a nightmare of missed communications, a tidal wave of spam and never being able to find the message that you’re looking for. The first thing to consider is what email server to use. Online accounts with Hotmail, Yahoo, Gmail and the rest are easy to set up, usually free and you can access them from any computer anywhere. However, they have several limitations; you cannot send large files from them, they are prone to spam and it is easy to fill up the inbox. Also, having a Hotmail email address does not work wonders for the credibility of your business. It is better if possible to have your own domain and use it as an email portal, for instance 18

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

john@bestbusiness.com. Whoever manages your domain will then provide as many email addresses as you require together with passwords and usernames. This lets you use software such as Windows Mail, Outlook, Mac OS X Mail or Linux Evolution to manage your mail, depending on your operating system. Next you need to protect yourself against spam which can be a huge problem. An unprotected email account which has been in existence for a while can attract 100 spam messages a day, many of which may contain viruses. Outlook has built in Spam protection but you can download plenty of other software that does a very good job for a few pounds a year; it is daft not to. Recently, one of my clients complained that he couldn’t receive email any more. I couldn’t find any problems with his account so I looked at his inbox and found over 1200 emails sitting in there, which was creating the problem. Most of them were spam, or marketing emails, or newsletters that would never be read; many of them were unopened. This is not an uncommon situation and solving it has nothing to do with IT; it is simply a matter

of good organisation. Create some appropriately named subfolders in your inbox, for example Misc, Enquiries, Clients and so on. Whenever you go to your inbox delete anything that is of no interest. Whatever is left should be dealt with as soon as possible and then archived in the appropriate subfolder. Make sure that you regularly empty your spam and deleted mail folders and, at the end of the day, your inbox should contain no more than 20 emails and all of these should be messages that have yet to be dealt with. Should your computer be infected with a serious virus, the operating system may have to be re-installed and it will be very difficult to recover any emails from your mail client. For this reason it is important to backup whatever software you use on a regular basis. Online accounts are automatically backed up so you don’t need to worry about them, as are email accounts that run through a remote server. However, if you’re using an Email Client such as Outlook Express on your computer you will need to backup your data to an external drive on a regular basis. For instructions on how to do this go to Google and search on “backup Outlook Express” or whatever mail client you happen to be using. The process is really more straightforward than you might expect but, if you find it all too complicated, why not secure the services of your friendly neighbourhood IT consultant. Graham Iek - IT Consultant

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Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

19


Preserving the quality of your media... Most people are not aware that their precious memories stored on Cine films, videos & photographic material are degrading in quality as years pass by. To preserve the quality and to ease viewing and sharing of these material is simple and economic. This service makes a great gift - why not present someone close to you with a

DVD of home movie that they haven’t seen for a while? EverMedia Ltd is a Widnes based company, specialising in conversion of 8mm & 16mm Cine Films, Video tapes, Slides, Negatives & Photos to DVD or other formats suitable for editing and digital archiving. Established for over 10 years, EverMedia have already served thousands of businesses and private individuals with a customer service record, second to none. In 2009 & 2010 EverMedia Ltd was nominated for 3 awards in customer service excellence and you can review what their customers have had to say about them at their web site www. evermedia.co.uk.

EverMedia also offers other related services such as CD & DVD Duplication, Professional Video Editing, Professional Slideshows/ Presentations, Family Documentaries and more. To preserve your precious and irreplaceable family memories or to archive/digitise your company’s audio visual material contact EverMedia today for an impartial advice on 0151 257 9366 or email: mail@evermedia.co.uk Find us at: Moor Lane Business Centre, Widnes, WA8 7AQ.

Need help with computers? We offer affordable assistance either at home or in the office. Advice on choosing the right computers or software Help setting up new computers Install printers and networks Teach how to download photographs off digital cameras Fix your PCs or Laptops Configure e-mails (via web/downloaded to PC)

Call John for a no-obligation chat on 01925 799410 or 07847 885306 e-Mail: pc@kkit.co.uk web site: www.kkit.co.uk/t_smalloff_home.html 20

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


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Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

21


LEISURE

Chicken Dhansak

This warming curry is perfect for a chilly Autumn evening. It’s a fairly mild dish, but if you prefer something a little hotter, add a chopped red or green chilli pepper to the minced onion mixture.

• Whizz for a few seconds until finely minced. • Then heat the oil in a large, deep frying pan. • Fry the minced onion mixture for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until softened and golden brown. • Stir in the curry paste and cook for 1 minute. • Cut the chicken fillets into large chunks and add to the frying pan.

• Stir in the red lentils and 22

Runcorn Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

• Cover and simmer gently, stirring occasionally for 3035 minutes until the chicken and lentils are tender. • Add the tomatoes and simmer uncovered for a further 10 minutes until the sauce has thickened and the tomatoes are soft. • Season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper. • Serve with boiled basmati rice and onion and cucumber relish. Garnish with fried onions. erve

4

ke ta

80

s

• Cook over a medium heat until no longer pink.

stock or water.

S

WHAT TO DO • Place the onion, garlic and ginger in a food processor or blender.

s

INGREDIENTS • 1 large onion, chopped • 2 garlic cloves, crushed • 2 tsp grated fresh root ginger • 2 tbsp sunflower oil • 2 tbsp mild curry paste (such as Patak’s) • 500g skinless chicken fillets • 100g red lentils • 600ml chicken stock or water • 2 large tomatoes, roughly chopped • Salt and freshly ground black pepper • Boiled basmati rice and onion and cucumber relish (see tip), to serve • Fried onions, to garnish

M

IN S

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Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

23


BEST WESTERN

Tel:

01928 735 255 Hilltops Restaurant - 80's Night Dinner and Dance 10th March 2012

Saturday 12th November 2011

Pink & Fluffy Amber Dextrous & the fantastic Dr Beverley Ballcrusher, it’s a totally off the wall experience where no one is safe. This is camp comedy at its best where no one knows what’s going to happen, including Amber and Beverley.

£24 per person & £22pp Goldcard holder & £60pp Dinner Bed and Breakfast

Christmas 2011

This event is the Hotels “Pink Night” for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, with part of the ticket price going to the Charity. Chef has created a wonderful 3 course set menu with coffee, with a Disco to follow the evenings entertainment till 1am.

Get your 2011 Brochure! With Dinner Dances from £28pp, Sunday with Santa just £15.50pp, £7.50 per Child Each Child will receive a Gift from Santa!

Just £26.00 per person £25 per person for Leisure Club Members/Goldcard Members £37.50 per person Bed and Breakfast Twin/Double room £10 pp supplement for Single occupancy.

Saturday 22nd October

A real 80’s revival, bringing back the big hair, 80’s music and an 80’s inspired 3 course menu, with dancing through till 1am.

Back by Popular !! demand

New Years Eve Friends & Family £45pp, £20 per Child BEST WESTERN

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Forest Hills Hotel

Indulgence Dinner Dance

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2012! Lets do it again!

Champagne, night of extravagance Sign up toa the newsletter and visit www.foresthillshotel.com for 14th all the latest 2012 events Saturday January BEST WESTERN

£17.00pp with a special Chocolate and Champagne menu, Ànishing the Dinner with a cascading fountain of the Ànest smooth Belgian Chocolate! Come and indulge in this unique Chocolate and Champagne experience, 2011with Dancing through till 1am by our resident DJ £26 per person £55 pp Amber Dextrous & Dinner the fantastic Bed and Breakfast Dr Beverley Ballcrusher, it’s a

Hilltops Restaurant - 80's

Night Dinner and Dance Saturday 12th November 2011 Christmas Hilltops Restaurant All the 11’s- 11/11/11 10th March 2012 £23.50 per person £55.00 per person Come dine with us on Friday 11th November for justDinner, £11! Bed and New Year A real 80’s revival, bringing back

Pink & Fluffy irly Tw Christmas

totally off the wall experience where no one is safe. This is camp comedy at its best where no one knows what’s going to happen, including Amber Beverley. Saturday 21stand January ber-2012

Back by Popular !! demand

Starter and main course from our dailybusy Table dto‘hote menu.in Why not stay the night, on our special Breakfast. Too Party December? Then join usrate for the big hair, 80’s music and an (Sharing rate for a 3 Twin or Double) the date- 11/11/2011. £20.11 per person stayingYear, for Bed & Breakfast! at our re-run of New enjoy a sumptuous course 80’s inspired 3 coursestandard menu,

with till 1am. meal,Stay followed bydancing a good through boogie until 1am! Menu £11.00Christmas Wine £11.00 £20.11

£24 per person &

£22pp Goldcard holder £60pp Pink Cabaret NightPink & &Fluffy

Chinese New Year Banquet – Year Dinner Bed and Breakfast Saturday 12 November of the Dragon Dinner & Dance Amber Dextrous’s longest running double act with the fantastic Dr Beverley Ballcrucher. This event is for

Christmas 2011

Breast Cancer Awareness month. 3 Course set menu with coffee, and a disco till 1am.

Hilltops Restaurant Just £26 pp, £37.50 pp B&B Twin/Double room h Novem ay 19t urd Sat This event is the person Hotels “Pink£55.00 Night” forper person Dinner, £23.50 per taurantMonth, Res Get your 2011 Brochure! ps lto Breast Cancer Awareness with Hil Bed andticket Breakfast Christmas 2011 part of the as 3 to the With Dinner Dances from £28pp, istmgoing l Chrprice Traditiona A Charity. Chef has created a wonderful fee Celebrating the Chinese New Year, of the Dragon, with Call us now for your Christmas brochure. with Cof rse Men Cou 3 course set u, menu with coffee, co, a fulla Disco banquet, Followed with Dancing till 1am. Dinner Dances for £28, Sunday with Santa £15.50 pp & £&.50 Sunday Dis for children. with Santa esthe tun asfollow istmto withChr evenings and get to rs just£45pp, £15.50pp, cke Cra entertainment 1am. New Years Eve Friends and Family £20per£7.50 child per Child elties, andtill Nov Each Child will receive a Gift from Santa! for Christmas odperson the mo you Justin£26.00 per £25 per person for Leisure Club

Members/Goldcard Members BEST WESTERN F Fo Forest rest Hil Hills Hotel £37.50 per person Bed and Breakfast Frodsham, Cheshire. WA6 6HH Twin/Double room £10 pp supplement for Single occupancy.

24

Widnes Local Mag | NovOctober & Dec 2011 Saturday 22nd

Tel: 01928 735 255 New Years Eve Friends & Family NEW Web Site - www.foresthillshotel.com £45pp, £20 per Child e: conference@foresthillshotel.com

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All About The Millbrow Business partners and mother and son team, Karen and Vic Turton have a long association with The Brow, going back over 10 years. Then in 2009 they leaped at the chance to buy the Free House and have been working hard since then to move from the old stereo typical working men’s club to their vision of a modern lively community pub with good old fashioned values of value for money, together with great service! And they’ve made terrific steps towards that vision. So far they have refurbished both the Main Room and the Function Room and they’ve also updated the south facing beer garden. They are currently updating both the snooker room and it’s tables. But the big change that we can now shed some light on (pardon the pun) are the plans to add some windows!! They’ll also be adding

double doors opening onto the newly refurbished decking area giving disabled access. As well as the visible changes to enhance the customers experience they’re also undertaking other less visible work such as reroofing parts of the club. If that’s not enough, they will soon be offering snacks and food after the kitchen refurbishment! The entertainment has also undergone a bit of a transformation too, and the events on offer have been getting bigger and better, with no plans to stop that next year! 2012 promises to be the biggest yet, with more Motown Nights and Band Nights, and hopefully coming soon there will for something else for those young at heart! All the acts are carefully chosen and many are so popular the customers can’t wait for them to come back! As

well as the popular party nights there’s regular daytime Zumba classes too! The popular Free House not only offers the biggest screen in any pub in Widnes in glorious HD, together with 9 Snooker tables, 2 Pool tables, Darts and Dominoes, Cards etc. they can also offer some of the cheapest drinks around! (although always remember to drink safely!). There are still a few tickets for the New Year event, but they’re going quickly, so grab one whilst you can! And if you’re a facebook user ensure you add ‘Millbrow Ssc Freehouse’ so you can keep an eye on what’s going on, because you can be sure there will be lots happening in 2012! I love what they’re doing and think that Karen and Vic are living up their vision of bringing the community back in to our local area!

November and December Events at The Mill Brow

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Mill Brow, Widnes, WA8 6RT • Tel:0151 424 4791 Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

25


Something new for Widnes...

Welcoming guests as friends, serving inspiring food and always exceeding your expectations... Cu Restaurant at the Hillcrest Hotel, has experienced a sympathetic refurbishment, giving it a stylish and comfortable appearance to our restaurant. The restaurant name ‘Cu’ is derived from the chemical element for copper, this metal is extensively used within the interior of the restaurant, adding to the contemporary yet warming feel.

Cu Restaurant at the Hillcrest Hotel Cronton Lane Widnes WA8 9AR For reservations please call 0151 424 1616

Head chef Andrew Ferguson and his team are proud to deliver seasonal menus showcasing innovative modern cuisine. Carefully crafted dishes are delivered with traditional inspiration and modern presentation, complimented by a simple, attentive yet relaxed service, along with a balanced wine list, our restaurant has the ideal surroundings for enjoying intimate dining to larger special occasions. 26

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


Cu

rious and exciting changes are going on at the Hillcrest Hotel. Having eaten there myself many times over the years it is clear to me that the restaurant there is a sort of Widnes institution. Famed for cavery roasts and its huge dining room, the restaurant was admittedly looking a little aged – but wouldn’t we all after so many parties? Richard Greensmith, the General Manager at the hotel and his assistant Simon Cowie felt that there is a large demand for good food in Widnes and good food needs a good restaurant to be served within. So, inspite of the doom and gloom about the economy and so forth, they knew the time was right to invest some much needed TLC and attention into the restaurant to bring it up to date. So the search began for a chef who could share their vision. As luck would have it, they came across a young guy called Andrew Ferguson – who had previously worked at the Harvey Nichols restaurant in Manchester (how fancy!). After being completely blown away by his cooking they knew that they had found the perfect man for the job. Andrew was tasked with coming up with an exciting, traditional and contemporary menu and the others went about completely refurbishing the existing restaurant. Now, anybody who has ever been inside this restaurant would surely recall the copper. It’s everywhere from the columns, to the serving stations to the bar top. Realising it would be a mammoth task to remove all of this metal – a flash of inspiration came to the team – so why not make it one of the main themes of the restaurant? That is how they came up with the new name ‘Cu’ – it’s the chemical symbol for the element copper. Very clever, eh?

Being a big foody, I was delighted to be invited to the restaurant in order to sample some of the dishes on this new menu in order to enable me to write this article and I was quite simply amazed by what Andrew put together for me. My tasting started with the Rabbit Pasty which is served with brown sauce and pickled onions – a real British dish. Pastry dishes can be a bit heavy, especially if it’s your first course, but this was just perfect, light and golden. Andrew then arrived with not one, but two main courses for me to try (diet starts on Monday, thank goodness this was Wednesday!). The first was a succulent Loin of Lamb, which was pink, just how I like it and served with both caramelised and pureed celeriac, baby leeks and smoked mashed potato. My absolute favourite dish however, was a Fillet of Hake, served with a tomato, chickpea and rosemary ragu and topped with salsa verde. The gorgeous ragu could have been a meal in itself, the rich and sweet tomato sauce was topped by the perfectly fried fillet of Hake – heavenly! As if that wasn’t enough food for a Wednesday lunchtime, Andrew insisted that I had to try a dessert. He presented me with a Vanilla Panna Cotta which came with a mixed berry and mint salad. Now, I don’t really have a sweet tooth but I could have wolfed down about four of these – it was creamy, sweet, fresh and tangy from the fruits. What more could you want from a dessert? It was quite clear to me that the food here really is something special. If you love good food then the Cu at The Hillcrest really is worth checking out – there’s really nowhere else producing dishes of this quality for miles around.

What I tasted from the exciting new menu at Cu Restaurant:

Rabbit Pasty

Loin of Lamb

Fillet of Hake

Free Wine!

To celebrate their launch ‘Cu’ are kindly offering a free 75cl bottle of house wine when two people each order three courses. Valid until 23rd Dec 2011. Please call to book, quoting ‘Free Wine Offer’ Tel: 0151 424 1616 • Valid any day Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

Vanilla Panna Cotta Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

27


THE TAVERN

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Why don’t you come and join me and my team for a safe, friendly and fun day or evening out? Children are welcome until 9pm. See you soon! Tracy Mappley (Manager)

THE TAVERN, 288 UPTON LANE, www.thelocalmags.co.uk WIDNES WA8 |9AF | TEL 0151 424 5994 28 Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011 e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


Festive Party Nights Revel in the lights and decorations, sample delicious flavours, and turn back the years on the dance-floor. From the hats, crackers and goodies, to a delicious dinner, we cater to every whim - making sure you and your guests enjoy the wonder of the season. Then dance the night away to all your favourite hits.

Fri 2nd, Sat 10th December

£25.00

Madhatters Party Night When Daresbury Park throws a party, there are no half measures. And when we lay on a feast, we certainly don’t hold back. It’s sure to be a wonderful night – with hats thrown in of course! Delicious food, crackers, novelties and then dance the night away with the Blues Brothers and resident DJ. Go as mad as you like!

Fri 2nd December

£30.00

Daresbury Discount Party Nights Too busy at Christmas? Then get into the party spirit by joining other festive get-togethers at one of our popular party nights. We have some great Christmas offers and will provide a festive venue, menu, great music and steady flow of Christmas cheer. All you need do is relax, make friends and play your part in a fantastic celebration.

Fri 25th, Sat 26th November Thursday 1st, 8th December

£15.00 £15.00

Steam, Bake & Grill Disco Evening Come and join us for a glamorous evening at Daresbury Park. From the moment you arrive you will be transported into a world of great food, great atmosphere and a great night! Enjoy a delicious 3-course meal then dance the night away with our DJ until late.

Fri 2nd, Sat 10th December

Quote Widnes and Runcorn Local at time of booking to receive a complimentary Leisure Club day pass

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£35.00


HOMES

All at Marks & SpencerQ 0845 302 1234Q www.marksandspencer.comQ

Warm up for Winter When long nights and frosty mornings make it feel as if winter is never going to end, it’s time to cosy up with a blazing fire, warm radiators or a welcoming stove. Katherine Sorrell’s ideas for overhauling your heating will help you make it through till next summer…

There’s no doubt that we’re all going to be thinking carefully about how we heat our homes this coming winter – and sensible measures such as good insulation, draught excluders and thermostats will help keep both costs and CO2 emissions down. But no matter how many extra jumpers we put on, there’s bound to come a time when we can’t do without some form of home heating. And since we’ve got to pay for it, we might as well make sure that it’s as efficient and attractive as possible. First: the traditional fireplace. Many of us have one and it’s usually a focal point of a living room – despite the fact that open fires are shockingly poor heat producers, operating at around just 15-20% energy efficiency. If your fireplace as a whole is unappealing (whether or not you want to use the fire as a form of heating), you can usually update it relatively easily just by changing the surround, hearth and/ 30

Runcorn Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

or mantelpiece: altering the colours, materials and proportions really does make a world of difference. If you haven’t got a chimney, though, the good news is that you can still have a fire. Balanced flue gas fires require a gas supply and an outside wall on which to mount the fire, while powerflue (or fan flue) gas fires have the same requirements, and also need mains electricity. No outside wall? No problem. Electric fires can be used regardless of chimneys, flues and outside walls, and can look surprisingly attractive compared to the ghastly models of old. And some gas fires use a catalytic converter to turn combustion gases into harmless carbon dioxide, so no flue is required. Because no energy is lost through the flue, they are also 100% heat-efficient. The big news in heating at the moment, however, is the woodburning stove. In looks alone, they’re huge attention-grabbers:

traditional styles have timeless appeal, while hole-in-the-wall or centrepiece versions fit wonderfully into a modern setting. And by burning wood from sustainable, local sources you’re not increasing your carbon emissions (for more information, go to www.nef.org.uk/ logpile). Last, but not least, if you’ve got central heating, don’t forget your radiators. Are they giving off enough heat for the room? You can help prevent heat loss – especially on an outside wall – by fitting tin foil (or special radiator reflectors) behind them to reflect the heat back in. But if they’re simply not effective enough then consider replacing them with a more powerful version, perhaps in a dramatic modern style or in a classic column shape. They’re not cheap, but they are both practical and good-looking, and will last you many long winters yet to come.

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


HOMES

Dress your home for winter with layers of cosiness... • Throw down a deep pile rug to add extra softness and a sense of warmth underfoot. • Swap sheer, pale, lightweight curtains or blinds for something heavier – wool, tweed, velvet, even felt, denim or mohair.

Westfire Uniq 15, £1,497.48Q Eurostove | 01934 750500Q www.eurostove.co.ukQ

• On sofas and armchairs, pile up cushions for a sense of cosy luxury and add a throw or two folded over the back: great for snuggling under. You could use a length of tweed edged with velvet ribbon, chunky knitting or crochet, fake fur or soft fleece.

• Replace pale bed linen with sheets or a duvet cover in a deeper shade. Add quilts, eiderdowns, bedcovers, throws and blankets. • Feature walls may no longer be cutting edge, but they’re still good looking: paint one wall of a living room or bedroom in warm, boldly coloured emulsion – it’s easy enough to paint over again if you get bored with it.

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Nov & Dec 2011 | Runcorn Local

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&DRINK

FOOD

Pheasant Breast

with pancetta and

Weston’s organic cider

With game well in season this makes a lovely warming dish to sustain you through those chilly autumn evenings. You can use any cider but I find Weston’s gives the best flavour.

• 8 slices of pancetta • 500ml Westons organic cider • 200ml chicken stock • 100ml double cream • 2 shallots, sliced • 2 carrots, sliced • 1 small celeriac, thinly sliced • Sprig of thyme

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

• Add the shallots, carrot, celeriac and thyme to the pan and fry for another minute.

• Return the liquid to the heat, add the stock and cream, reduce by a half and season. • Divide the pheasant between 4 plates, pour over the sauce. • Serve with roasted potatoes and steamed greens.

• De-glaze the pan with the cider, bring to the boil. • Once boiling, transfer the pan into the oven, gas mark 6 or 200°C for 15 minutes or until the pheasant is cooked through.

erve

4

ke ta

40

s

34

• Heat a thick bottomed oven proof pan and seal the pheasant breasts on both sides.

• Remove the pan from the oven, take out the pheasant and keep warm.

s

• Sea salt and Black pepper

WHAT TO DO • Wrap each of the pheasant breasts with 2 pieces of pancetta

S

INGREDIENTS • 4 pheasant breasts

M

IN S

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COMMUNITY

St Luke’s SOS Campaign From the 12th Century St Luke’s Church has been situated in the village of Farnworth and has been a focal point for worship and celebration. It was once considered one of the three most important buildings in the area, along with Norton Priory and Halton Castle. The architectural structure and development of the church throughout the centuries is well documented and is of interest to scholars of medieval history. It includes many magnificent carvings, monuments (including a sculpture by the Italian sculptor Tenerani), hatchments and stained glass windows (including a window designed by William Morris). It has a real place in Widnes’ development as a town, in particular with the endowment of a grammar school, in 1507, by Bishop William Smythe. From this school appeared some notable scholars, including Richard Bancroft, who during the reign of James I went on to be appointed Archbishop of Canterbury; and devoted much of his time to supervising the authorised version of the King James Bible. PROBLEM Sadly the ravages of time are now threatening the strength and stability of this special place. The Church is suffering from water Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

ingress in a variety of places. Water erosion can now clearly be seen on the exterior walls. In addition the gutters, flashings, upstands and stonework are all in poor repair. There is also rot and insect attack in various parts of the structure. Campaign Friends of St Luke’s church Group is preparing a campaign to raise the funds to save our local heritage for. Vicar of St.Luke’s church Reverend Helen Morby says ‘A dynamic creative campaign is required to not only to raise £500,000 but to also engage with the local community by offering cultural events so that everyone young and old can enjoy the beauty of the building’. An application to English Heritage for funding has already been made. However we cannot do this alone and we are keen to involve as many people as possible in saving this building. Progress report Exploratory work to determine the extent of the work required to Save Our Sanctuary has been carried out and there is more damage than expected, and the original anticipated cost of £250,000 is now expected to rise significantly.

This work must be carried out as a matter of urgency to ensure that this historic church is preserved for generations to come. Photographs of the problem will be available on our web site www.st-luke. org and there will be a display of photographs at our Christmas Fair on Saturday 26th November 2pm to 4pm in Farnworth School, Pit Lane. Launch of the SOS Campaign A launch lunch for the Save Our Sanctuary Campaign will be held on Advent Sunday 27th November and there are 4 cultural weeks planned for 2012 and 2013. If you are interested attending any of the events or in becoming a Friend of St. Luke’s Farnworth or want more information please ring 0151 424 2735. How can you support Save Our Sanctuary campaign? If 1000 people donated £10 per month for 2 years we would raise £240,000. If you would like to make a donation to the Campaign please make your cheque payable to Friends of St.Luke’s church and post to the Vicarage. Any amount big or small would be much appreciated. If businesses are interested please contact Friends Group 0151 424 2735

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607 35


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37


PROPERTY

Property Advice

These are depressing times for we estate agents; sales volumes are a fraction of what we are used to and prices are bumping along the bottom. The only reason house prices aren’t in free fall, we are told, is there aren’t enough houses to go round. So the proposed change in planning laws to “assumed consent,” which could lead to 300,000 new homes being built over the next few years, should send shivers down my spine. Oddly though, I’m not that worried. Here’s why: Firstly, the new planning proposals are not yet a done deal; they may be watered down considerably before they pass into law. Secondly, it will take time for house-builders to acquire more plots of land and then secure the required planning permission. Taking into account how long it

What impact on prices will the new planning rules have? actually takes to build a housing development it could well be 2 or 3 years before the first properties come onto the market; hopefully the economy will be in much better shape by then. Finally, a lot of people tell me that they’re not considering putting their house on the market because they actually want to upsize and there’s nothing suitable on the market at the moment, or they’re waiting to see if prices are going to fall a bit which will make their next house a bit cheaper, or they’re so worried about the economy that they don’t want to risk taking on a bigger mortgage. I believe that by the time these new houses come onto the market your average buyer will have more money in their pocket, will be more confident about the

future and will find it considerably easier to get a mortgage. Many of the buyers of the new houses will have their old houses to sell which will increase sales volumes. All these things actually point to higher prices and we estate agents will be happy again; more sales equals more fees for us to earn. Craig Brown - Estate Agent

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WAVELL D E C O R AT O R S Widnes based, Family Business Quality Workmanship 35 Years Experience All Aspects of Painting & Redecoration Interior & Exterior Free no obligation quotes Insurance work undertaken At Wavell Decorators, we recognise ‘your home is your castle’ which we will respect and treat as such! www.wavelldecorators.co.uk

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Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

49


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Plan ahead now so that you leave your home to your family, not the local authority! Bespoke Legal Services It’s not something we like to think about but one day may have to face the fact that we may need 24/7 care that our partner / immediate family will not be in a position to offer. Care Homes are the obvious answer but they are costly. If you have more than £23000 in assets and this includes your home then the local authority will assess you as having the funds to meet the full cost of the care home! It makes sense to plan for this possibility and speak to Bespoke Legal Services who have protected the Family home/Inheritance of over 300

people in the North West this year; in addition they have also protected their bank and building society accounts. In real terms this then means that should either you or your partner need to be admitted to a care home you are protecting your family home and funds so that your children can enjoy their rightful inheritance. In 2008 over 70,000 people have needed to admit a partner to care homes and because they hadn’t planned ahead, as a result have had to sell the family home to pay for the long term care. Don’t let this happen to you, see our main ad on page three

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51


Hedge your

GARDENS

Marking your garden boundary with a hedge rather than a wall or fence helps to provide more gardening opportunities plus the living boundary may also be a real boon for wildlife, so if you’re thinking garden boundaries, think hedging. If you want a garden boundary that looks good and is green in all senses of the word, then you can’t go far wrong with a hedge. Hedges are generally grown from containergrown plants (bought at any time of year, with well-established root system and living in a pot) or from ‘bare root’ plants which are perfect bought at this time of year and planted straight away. Bare root hedging is not an option available for every type of plant. Some garden centres offer it, but generally for the freshest plants and widest selection you’re better going to a hedging specialist nursery. These

Pippa GreenwoodG

plants are often quite small, but great value and soon romp away, providing you with a low-cost good looking hedge. WHAT TO CHOOSE? Hornbeam: This deciduous tree makes great classic hedging and in the autumn leaves turn an attractive bright yellow. It’s long-lived and once established makes a good hedge for roosting birds. It’s easy to keep trimmed and dense, its only downside being few leaves remain in winter. Does well in sun or part shade. Beech: A tough and hardy deciduous tree that makes a great hedge. Great kept neatly clipped for a formal look. Although it does shed its leaves, they turn a wonderful tanbrown towards the end of autumn and a high percentage remain on the plants until new leaves appear

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Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


Boundary... in springtime. Native Hedging (including hawthorn, wild rose, guilder rose, blackthorn): Perfect for a more rural look with lots of wildlife. Native hedging is often available as a mixed selection of suitable plants, all the above planted randomly along the hedge line make a great mixed deciduous hedge which will provide shelter, nesting sites and nectar from the attractive flowers and food from the various hips and berries. Yew: Perfect for a more formal hedging. It’s evergreen and its narrow dark green leaves make a great backdrop for plants within the garden. Unlike most other evergreen hedging, if it’s allowed to grow out of hand, it does respond well to being cut back quite hard. Avoid damp sites and remember that although the end result looks great,

this is one of the slower growing hedging plants. Prunus laurocerasus: Also known as the cherry laurel, it’s a large-leafed evergreen which forms a very good, dense hedge. It produces small, pretty white flowers, but if you clip the hedge regularly you rarely see many of them. The leaves are a light, glossy green, avoiding the sombre feeling some evergreen hedges can bring. Thuja plicata: Known as the western red cedar, the variety ‘Atrovirens’ makes a particularly good evergreen hedge. It grows reasonably rapidly and is often used when one would like some aspects of a Leyland hedge but wouldn’t want its potential to get out of hand. The foliage produces a gorgeous pineapple aroma when crushed.

GARDENS

by Pippa Greenwood PLANTING BASICS Whichever of these fantastic options takes your fancy, don’t forget the planting basics: • Plant container grown hedging plants nearly any time of year, avoiding extreme weather. • Plant bare-root hedging at any time that it is available, mainly late autumn to late winter or very early spring. • Prepare the ground by forking in bulky organic matter such as garden compost, bagged compost or well-rotted manure. • Most hedging is best planted with each plant about 45cm (18in) apart along the row. For a denser hedge plant in 2 staggered rows, each row about 30-45cm apart. • Don’t forget to keep the young hedge properly pruned – if left to grow it alone, it’ll rarely become good and dense.

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Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

53


LEISURE

St Lucia At the southern end of the Lesser Antilles, in the Caribbean islands, St Lucia is just a drop in the ocean, 27 by 14 miles, with spectacular mountains, lush rainforest and fertile valleys fringed by sandy beaches. Tossed 14 times between French and English colonial powers, the island has thrown both cultures into the melting pot with a generous helping of African folklore, a little East Indian spice and vestiges of early Amerindian settlers. English is the official language but Creole, a mix of African dialects and French, is coming back, in tune with the stirring rhythm of reggae and calypso. St Lucia is tourist-hungry but eco-friendly and most developments have been limited to the northwest around Rodney Bay. There are fine sands and palm trees, a gleaming marina and out on the hilly peninsula, known as Pigeon Island, fabulous views over the shimmering Caribbean Sea on one side and foaming Atlantic breakers on the other. Pleasure boats sail along the coast looking out for sunfish, dolphins and whales, past the lovely Marigot Bay featured in 54

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

Dr Doolittle, the fabulous diving sites, hidden coves and sleepy villages strung with fishing nets and laundry drying on the beach. On a Friday night, when the beat of Afro-Caribbean steel bands echo along the shore, the village of Anse la Raye stages a gigantic fish fry al fresco, a lively family event where all sorts of delicacies bubble in the pots or sizzle in the pans – seafood, sweet potatoes, corn on the cob, rice, callaloo soup and more. The national dish is salt fish with green bananas, but equally popular is the fiery pepperpot cooked in cassava juice. Soufrière, the old capital, nestles below the luxuriant volcanic cones of the Pitons, seen on every postcard, but few visitors linger in town. The world’s only ‘drive-in volcano’ is just a stone’s throw away, seething with sulphurous fumes and gurgling mud, and there are Botanical Gardens with mineral springs, tropical blooms and a stunning Diamond Fall gushing down multi-coloured rocks. To the north, the new capital, Castries, is famed for its Jazz Festival and dutyfree malls, gleaming with Colombian

emeralds and Amerindian craft, but the old town retains a quaint colonial charm. The cathedral has stunning murals and stained glass, designed by Nobel-prize artist Dunstan St Omer, no doubt a source of inspiration for myriad craftsmen and painters who have set up home on the nearby Hill of Good Luck. Climbing the Pitons is strictly for the brave but there are easier treks through the hills and rainforest with jeep safaris heading for remote hamlets, banana plantations and Creole farms fragrant with cinnamon and nutmeg. There may be time to taste cassava bread, bathe in a waterfall and bargain for bird ornaments carved out of coconut shells. At over 3000 feet, Mount Gimmie, the highest peak, rises above it all but views can be enjoyed with no effort at all in the eight-seater gondola offering an expensive but popular ‘sky ride’. There you glide up a hillside, skimming the tree tops, gazing at incense and fern trees, breadnut, blue maho and heliconia, spotting hummingbirds, butterflies, mongoose and tarantulas dangling inches from your face. Rolling farmlands stretch into the distance, sprinkled with villages where the occasional beat of a Creole drum seems to touch the very heart of this varied and scenic island.

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


A Foundation

for Peace The Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace was set up in memory of Tim and Johnathan two years after the IRA bombing of Warrington in 1993. On the 7th Anniversary, 20th March 2000, the Peace Centre was opened by our Chief Patron the Duchess of Kent. The aim of the charity was to work with young people from Ireland and Warrington to help them to foster lasting friendships, respect the views of others and to resolve conflict non-violently and, although this is still a big part of the Foundations work, the range and aspirations of our programmes has grown. The Foundation works with people who have been involved in conflict locally, nationally

and internationally. Victims and survivors of terrorist attacks such as London, the Northern Ireland ‘Troubles’, Sharmel Sheikh and Madrid bombings, ex-service men and women traumatised by what they have witnessed while serving overseas in conflicts such as Iraq and Afghanistan, Army Officers who inform families when they have lost a loved one and Police working within our communities. The Foundation helps those who are there to look after us, we provide the space for them to come together to gain support from one another and the skills to overcome their trauma and to use their experiences in a positive way for the benefit of the wider community.

Peace at Christmas...

Looking for the perfect way to get into the party mood this Christmas? Then why not join us? £35 per person includes 4 Course meal, fabulous live entertainment and a first class DJ playing all your favorite songs. Gifts donated by L’Oreal for all the ladies and you can bring your drinks too! Please ring 01925 581234 for more information. Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

55


MOTORING

f o Top Flops... the

CAR makers... Give them their due, they normally produce some rather good motors. But occasionally – very occasionally – disasters that should have remained in the design studio slip through the net. Here James Baggott takes a look at the top of the flops...

Renault Koleos

You only have to look over the fence to sister firm Nissan to see that crossovers can be successful – try and order a Qashqai or Juke now and you’ll be looking at a rather long wait. So it’s hard to pinpoint exactly why the Renault Koleos flopped. Renault launched it in 2008 and by 2010 it had been axed, selling just 2,890. The Qashqai, by comparison, sold 9,253 models in March alone.

Ford Cougar Along with the Focus, the Cougar was one of the cars that demonstrated Ford’s ‘new edge’ look in the late 90s. Available with the Mondeo’s 2.0-litre and 2.5-litre petrol engines, the Cougar was loved by the press. Sadly, the public wasn’t convinced – the lack of a prestige badge meant sales totaled 13,958 in four years. In contrast, the BMW 3 Series Coupe sold 44,420 between ’98 and ’02, showing a badge makes all the difference.

Chrysler Crossfire Launched with great fanfare in 2003, the Crossfire was Chrysler’s sports car for the masses. Based on the first-generation Mercedes SLK, it came in coupe and convertible forms with retro American styling. However, only 4,544 units were sold in five years, and the Crossfire quietly died in 2008. In contrast the SLK sold 4,362 units in 2004 alone.

Mercedes-Benz R-Class Billed as a car that combined ‘an SUV, sports saloon, and luxury estate car’ into one package, the Mercedes R-Class arrived in 2005 hoping to carve a niche of its own. It was such a niche that few Brits bought it, and even a makeover in 2010 did little to improve the 3,433 sales clocked up so far. Mercedes says those numbers are ‘in-line with expectations’, but we’re not so sure about that…

Subaru Tribeca Like Renault, Subaru believed it needed an SUV in its range. So, in 2006, along came the Tribeca. Intended to offer a ‘practical SUV with great handling and a sporty drive’ it failed to find buyers. A face-lift in 2008 did nothing to improve sales and it bowed out that year with just 750 sold. In contrast, the Volvo XC90 – a car Subaru was competing with – sold 11,897 units in the same three years.

56

Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


Ron Hill Motors WHAT CAN WE OFFER? OIL SERVICE 5 from £4 ject prices sub to vat

General servicing & repairs Cars & Light Commercial

INTERIM SERVICE from £75 prices subject to vat

all Makes & Models all Mechanical repairs Undertaken Diagnostic tuning MAJOR MOt testing station SERVICE (Bikes & Cars) fr 5 om £140 from £4 prices subject prices subject and more... to vat to vat

AIR CON

Unit 6 Woodend Ave Industrial Estate, Speke

0151 486 6118

www.ronhillmotors.co.uk Open: 9.00am - 5.00pm, Saturdays: 9.00am - 12noon

Quality, Reliable and Local Service

Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

57


Mega Maze!

s a m st ers! i r Q: W h Ch rack cat oat do y C at C n the ou ca hris bea ll a t A: S mas ch and ? y Cla ws!

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Sudoku Puzzle - Medium 9 4

5

1

7

3

6 2 1

6

2

5

8

4 8

7

3

7 6 9

How to play

9 6

5

2

7

8

Fill in the grid so that every row, every column, and every 3x3 box contains the digits 1 through to 9, with no repetition! That’s all there is to it. You solve the puzzle with reasoning and logic - there’s no maths involved and no adding up. It’s fun! It’s Challenging! It’s addictive!

Spot the Difference

Please mention Widnes Local when responding to any adverts

Nov & Dec 2011 | Widnes Local

59


Regular Local Events Local Groups Soroptimist International Widnes Last Monday of each Everglades Hotel, Derby Road month at 6pm Contact: Sheila Guthrie on 0151 (Excluding Bank 510 2658 or Linda Redhead 01928 Hols, August & 716807 December. Widnes Kids & Dads Every other Saturday A group for Dads & male carers of morning, 10amchildren. 12pm Contact: Jacqui Meadows Warrington Road Tel: 0151 495 3958 Children’s Centre Bookstart Rhymetimes Every Wednesday Activities designed to encourage 10am-11.30am parents & carers to share rhymes & at songs with babies. Ditton Library Halton Bereavement Drop In Every Tuesday If you are feeling low and would like 4.30pm-7pm someone to talk to then drop in for at Widnes Fire Safety a coffee and a chat. Centre, Lacey Street Widnes Rotary Club Every Monday Hilcrest Hotel, Cronton Lane, 5.45pm-7.15pm Widnes, WA8 9AR Contact: Dale Kenningham widnesrotaryclub.webeden.co.uk Live Country Music & Line Dancing Every Monday night United Services Club Prescot Road, Widnes Tel: 0151 424 4978 Live Country Music & Line Dancing Every Thursday night Our Lady’s RC Social Club, Mayfields Ave, Widnes Tel: 0151 424 3437 Line Dancing Every Friday Chapelfield Community Centre 7:30pm-9:30pm Liverpool Road, Widnes Tel: 0151 423 3121 Live Country Music & Line Dancing Every Thursday The Village Club, Appleton Village from 8:30pm Tel: 0151 424 3657 Nearly New Sale Every Saturday St Mary’s Parish Community Centre, 10am-11am West Bank, Widnes (excl Bank Hol Tel: 0151 423 3881 weekends) Tae-Kwondo Every Monday and Chapelfield Community Centre Thursday Liverpool Road, Widnes 5:30pm-7:00pm Tel: 0151 423 3121 Yoga Every Thursday Chapelfield Community Centre 7:00pm-8:45pm Liverpool Road, Widnes Tel: 0151 423 3121 Nifty Fifties Every Monday & Upton Community Centre, Wednesday Hough Green Road, Widnes 10am-11am Tel: 0151 423 1386 Table Top Sale Every First Saturday St John’s Church Centre, Greenway of the Month Road, Widnes 10am-12pm Tel Sue on: 0151 423 6375 Zumba Dance Every Thursday Upton Community Centre, 8:30pm-9:30pm Hough Green Road, Widnes Tel: 0151 423 1386

Warrington Road Bambini Day Care Centre offers a high standard of quality childcare and education. The 44 place Day Care centre has provision for children aged 3 months up to 4 years 11 months. Contact: Steph Speakman, Phone: 0151 422 0049 Email:daycare.warringtonroad@halton.gov.uk Halton voluntary Group is a group whose aim is to help the people who have diabetes. We hold our meetings on the 3rd Weds of each month, when we have speakers who give a talk on the care of diabetes. At St. Paul’s Church Hall, Vicarage Road, Widnes and the Old Police Station, Mersey Road, Runcorn starting at 7.30 pm 0151 424 9432 HALDS (Halton Adults with Learning Difficulties Support) Support group for parents/carers of adults with learning difficulties. Contact: Pam Roberts Tel: 07583 694671 Email: p.roberts@ntlworld.com Widnes & Runcorn Cancer Support Centre 21-23 Alforde Street, Widnes, WA8 7TR Tel: 0151 423 5730 Email: dee.graal@tiscali.co.uk www.widnesruncorncsg.co.uk HAFS (Halton Autistic Family Support Group) Trinity House, 78-80 Victoria Road, Widnes, WA8 7RA Tel: 0151 495 3540 Email contact@hafs.org.uk Halton Haven Hospice Barnfield Avenue, Runcorn, WA7 6EP Tel: 01928 712728 Halton Parkinson’s Support Group Helps improve quality of live for people with Parkinson’s disease, we meet once a month. Contact: Margaret Smith Tel: 0151 257 7954 ChAPS – Cheshire Aspergers Parents Support Aims to support parents and carers of dependants with Aspergers Syndrome or Autistic Spectrum Disorder whether diagnosed or not, living in Cheshire. Contact: Jo Garner Tel: 01928 722384 Mind in Halton Halton Association for Mental Health Sep up with the aim of providing day care and residential services to those people living in Halton who had or were experiencing some form of mental distress. Widnes Tel: 0151 495 3991 Runcorn Tel: 01928 563612 Halton & St Helens voluntary and Community Action Help grow and strengthen the voluntary, community and faith sector in both Halton and St Helens Halton Voluntary Action - Sefton House, Public Hall Street, Runcorn, Cheshire WA7 1NG. Tel: 01928 592405 Halton Nightstop For Young People Aged 16 – 25 years Nightstop believes that all young people have the right to access safe and secure accommodation that is appropriate for their needs. The service is committed to making this happen wherever possible through Volunteer Hosting and Family Mediation. Ship Canal House, Percival Lane, Runcorn Contact: Terri Tel: 01928 238420 The Kings Cross Project The Kings Cross Project exists to enhance the lives of children, young people and families in areas of Halton by working alongside local people through community development principles to find local solutions to locally identified needs. Tel: 0151 420 4905

Know of any other regular events or groups that you’d like to see on this page? Let us know on 01928 739607


Doctor Numbers NHS Direct (24hr Helpline) Widnes GP Health Centre Health Care Resource Centre Oaks Place, Caldwell Rd, WA8 7GD The West Bank Medical Centre 2 Lower Church Street, WA8 0NG Peelhouse Medical Plaza Peelhouse Lane, WA8 6TN Appleton village Surgery 2-6 Appleton Village, WA8 6DZ Highfield ENT Clinic Highfield Road, WA8 7DJ Upton Rocks Surgery Widnes Rufc Car Park, Heath Road Widnes, WA8 7NU The Beeches Medical Centre 20 Ditchfield Road, WA8 8QS The Upton Medical Centre Bechers, Hough Green, WA8 4TE

School & College Numbers 0845 46 47 0151 495 5249

0151 424 3113 0151 424 6221 0151 423 2990 0151 511 5732 0151 422 9794

0151 424 3101 0151 511 5805

Halton MP Derek Twigg MP is Member of Parliament for Halton He can be contacted as follows: Derek Twigg MP House of Commons London, SW1A OAA Tel: 0151 424 7030 Email: derek.twigg.mp@parliament.uk

Library Opening Times Widnes Library 0151 907 8383 victoria Road, WA8 7QY Opening Hours Mon-Thurs: 09:00 - 21:00, Friday: 09:00 - 17:30 Saturday: 09:00 - 16:00, Sunday: Closed

Local Vets Andale veterinary Centre Ditchfield Rd, Widnes, WA8 8RF Companion Care vets Inside Pets at Home, New Mersey Retail Park, Speke, L24 8QB Halton view veterinary Centre 208 Warrington Rd, WA8 0AX Deacon Rd veterinary Surgery 61 Deacon Rd, Widnes, WA8 6EF

0151 423 1388 0151 427 7902 0151 423 3557 0151 424 2852

Local Entertainment The Brindley Theatre High Street, Runcorn, WA7 1BG Catalyst Museum Mersey Road, Widnes, WA8 0DF Norton Piorory Tudor Road Manor Park, Runcorn, WA7 1SX

0151 907 8360 0151 420 1121 01928 569 895

Riverside College (Kingsway) Riverside College (Cronton) Fairfield High Saints Peter & Paul Catholic College The Bankfield Wade Deacon High All Saints Upton CE Ditton Primary Fairfield Infant Fairfield Junior Farnworth CE Hale CofE Primary School Halebank CE Lunts Heath Primary Moorfield Primary Oakfield Community Primary Our Lady of Perpetual Succour Simms Cross Primary Spinney Avenue CE St Basil’s Catholic Primary St. Bede’s Catholic Infant St. Bede’s Catholic Junior St. Gerard’s Roman Catholic St. John Fisher Catholic Primary St. Michael’s Catholic Primary West Bank Primary

0151 0151 0151 0151

257 257 423 424

2800 2020 3571 2139

0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151 0151

424 423 424 424 424 424 424 425 424 423 424 424 424 424 424 424 424 424 424 424 424 424

5038 2721 7248 5861 4879 0123 3042 3023 4878 3322 3108 4958 6130 5031 4234 7839 3112 3386 2879 7794 4468 2799

School Term Times

Autumn Term 2011 1st September - 21st Oct: Half Term 24th - 28th Oct 31st October - 16th December: Xmas 19th Dec - 2nd Jan Spring Term 2012 3rd January - 10th February: Half Term 13th - 17th Feb 20th February - 30th March: Easter 2nd - 13th April Summer Term 2012 16th April - 4th May *Bank Holiday 7th May 8th May - 1st June: Half Term 4th - 8th June (inc 4th & 5th as Bank Holidays) 11th June - 19th July: Summer 20th July - 31st August

Council Numbers 24 Hour - Halton Direct Link Halton Housing Trust (Not council) Planning Services Police Station (Non Emergency) Social Care (Adult) Transport & Highways Waste Management Division

0303 333 4300 0151 510 5000 0151 907 8300 0845 458 0000 0151 907 8306 0151 471 7600 0151 907 8300

Household Waste Johnsons Lane 0151 495 1251 Widnes, WA8 OSJ Opening Hours 1st October - 31st March: 8am to 6pm 1st April - 30th September: 8am to 8pm For any large items, contact the Waste Management Disivion of Halton Borough Council on 0151 907 8300 to arrange collect, fees from £10 per item.

Know of any other useful numbers or information that you’d like to see on this page? Let us know on 01928 739607.


Index of Advertisers Art Unicorn Gallery Barber/Hairdresser O'Hares Barber Shop Bathrooms JDC Ceramics Bedrooms & Kitchens NYK Bridal Shop Butterfly Brides of Cheshire Building & Construction North West Contracts Business & Domestic Cleaning Daily Poppins Car Repairs Chips Away Care Home Abbeyfield College of Further Education Priestley College Computers Kinetic Konsultancy Cartridge World The Easy PC Store Decorators Colourmatch Wavell Decorators eBay Reseller Usellmystuff Electrical Quality Services CJ Duggan Electrical Entertainer The Magic 1 Estate Agents Abbeyfords Fencing Melic Fabrications Fitness Halton Stadium Fitness Food & Drink Cu at The Hillcrest Dial A Drink Daresbury Park Forest Hills Hotel

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Widnes Local Mag | Nov & Dec 2011

KFC The Brow The Tavern Flooring Treadwell Carpets Cheshire Flooring Furniture BW Furniture Gaming Vision Racer Garage Doors Amazon Garage Doors Gardens Cronton Garden Centre Brian Humphries Gardens Gas Services Express Gas Granite Fitters Continental Stone Supplies Hair Salon Darren Tyrer Hairdressing Health Products Newlyn Healthcare Ltd Home Improvement Specialist DJ Home Improvements Home Maintenance RWB Property Care Insurance Services NFU Mutual Interiors Namaste Interiors Jewellers Neil & Barker Kitchen & Bathroom Fitters Flag Ship Kitchens Kitchen Supplies Spoilt For Choice Landscaping Landscape World Legal Services Bespoke Legal Services Lighting Retailer Hindley and Carr Mechanic Ron Hill Motors

23 25 28 50 32 40 57 53

2 52 36 41 15 13 49 40 21 49 6 44 23

Mobile Hairdresser hair@home Hair Solutions Oven Cleaning Ovencleaners Paving R-Way Paving Personal Claims AJW Claims Pet Services Top Turnout Pharmacy Widnes Late Night Pharmacy Plasterer G. Pierce Tiling/Plastering Plumbing DE Plumber/Handyman Heatcare Group Quality Services Print & Media Solutions EverMedia Record Dealers Whiplash Records Security Systems Carna Alarms Self Storage Widnes Containers American E-Z Self Storage Solar Panels Quality Solar Taxi Services Halton Taxis Upholstery Armchair Reupholstery Wedding Services JJP Weddings & Events Windows & Conservatories TWS Improve

11 14 24 53 21 14 16 39 39 51 37 20 11 36 31 47 41 62 44 12 63

53 3 38 57

www.thelocalmags.co.uk | e: info@thelocalmags.co.uk | t: 01928 739607


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Widnes Local - Nov & Dec 2011  

Making Your Business Everybody's Business

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