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Your free lifestyle magazine for Kent and East Sussex

Issue 30


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Welcome to the September/October issue of Kudos

We chose our cover picture for this issue to highlight the need to recycle. Recycling Week, from 24th-30th September, is designed to encourage us all to recycle more, and this year, plastic is the hot topic. More than 40 big companies have signed a pact to make all plastic packaging reusable, recyclable or compostable and eliminate all single-use packaging by 2025. We’ve got ideas in this issue for everyone to reduce plastic use, recycle, and avoid waste. As well as Recycling Week, it’s National Rice Week from 17th-23rd September, this year focusing on the versatility of rice. We’ve got some delicious recipes for you to try, from Thai Prawn & Mango Rice Salad to Rice & Quinoa Veggie Burgers. Archaeologist, historian, author and presenter of the BBC2 series Coast, Neil Oliver (the one with the long hair) sets off on his amusing and entertaining first tour on 1st October, visiting the Assembly Hall Theatre in Tunbridge Wells on October 11th. In The Story of the British Isles in 100 Places, Neil shares his love of Great Britain – we talk to him about the show, his favourite places and why he is so passionate about history. October ends with Halloween, of course, and if you fancy a pumpkin with a difference this year, head to Pumpkin Moon in Maidstone, and choose from over 70 different pumpkin, squash or gourd, from tiny Munchkin or Casperita, perfect for decorating your house or painting, to monster pumpkins that will make a Halloween statement. It’s a new fashion season, too, and local couple Vivienne and Pete are the models for our autumn style feature, which we photographed at The Warren Restaurant in Tunbridge Wells. Enjoy!

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Managing Director: Robin Tucek Publishing Director: Hannah Tucek Editorial Director: Ann Wallace Creative Director: Neil Constant Sales Director: Meral Griffith Fashion Editor: Sally-Ann Carroll Photographer: Matt Harquail

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While every care is taken to ensure accuracy, the publishers, authors and printers cannot accept liability for errors or omissions. All rights reserved. Prices and details correct at time of going to press. No part of this publication may be produced in any form without the written permission of the copyright holder and publisher, application for which should be made to the publisher. Opinions expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of the publisher.


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Rushlake Green


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Taken by Matt Harquail

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Things we love this issue

1. This gorgeous sky-blue Muck N Brass lampshade has a surprise – it’s lined with wallpaper that features beautifully illustrated and fabulously eccentric flamingos, giraffes and elephants. Look closer; everything isn’t quite what it seems… Suitable for ceiling pendants, table or floor lamps. From £40 2. The all-new My Cloud Home storage device plugs directly into your Wi-Fi router at home so you can easily save, organise and control all your digital content in one central place and wirelessly access it all from anywhere. There is plenty of space to keep photos, videos and files from all your phones, tablets, computers and external storage devices in one place at home – and you can access it anywhere you have an internet connection. £119.99 3. The UK’s finest gourmet takeaway company, EatFirst, has launched their new Taste of Asia range at Ocado – giving you expertly prepared ‘restaurant-ready’ meals in the comfort of your own home. Driven by award-winning ex-Roka chef Benn Hodges (2017 Great British Takeaway Chef of the Year), the range has been designed for busy foodies looking for high-quality, wholesome meals that include vegan, vegetarian, and gluten-free options. Benn uses unique processes and ingredients to create small-batch meals that are hand-finished into eco-friendly, compostable packaging. Dubbed the ‘world’s finest ready meals’, the aim is to change 8

the current view that ready meals are unhealthy and mass produced. Prices range from £2.99 - £12.49. 4. Fruit and herbal infusions typically deliver a tempting aroma, but a disappointing taste. The new fruit and floral range from JING has been hand-crafted from the highest-quality real fruit and flowers, and nothing else, expertly dried to retain their essential oils and to protect the integrity and strength of their flavour. The new range comprises Pineapple & Osmanthus, Raspberry & Rose, Strawberry & Rooibos and Green Apple & Hibiscus. From £3.50 5. Holland & Barrett has become the first high-street chain to sell cannabidiol (CBD)- infused water. Love Hemp Water is sugar-free and contains 2mg of natural hemp extract. It tastes great and is naturally hydrating. There’s a growing understanding of the wide-ranging benefits of cannabis oil to health and well-being – the number of people using CBD oil in Britain has rocketed from 125,000 to 250,000 in the past 12 months, according to the Cannabis Trades Association UK. Cannabis oil has been subject to extensive scientific studies, most recently by the World Health Organisation, where it was found to offer a wide variety of health benefits. Celebrity fans of CBD oil include the actress Jennifer Aniston who uses it to help her deal ‘with pain, stress and anxiety’. 99p K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8


Upfront What’s new and happening One for foodies

Cook book will raise funds for Tree of Hope charity

Front row, left to right: Kate Bourne, Fundraising Manager at Tree of Hope, Bruce McMichael (The Lemon Grove), Julie Docherty (Papermakers Arms), LouLou Hamilton (Cocolicious), Severien Vits, food photographer and blogger Middle row: Doug White from Fuggles Beer Café (left) and Russell Goad, chef at Rustled up (right) Back row, left to right: Will Devlin (The Small Holding), Brian Hammond (Whiting and Hammond), Ben Sulston (Sulston’s Kitchen)

Local children’s charity Tree of Hope has announced they are putting together The Cook Book Sevenoaks/Tonbridge/Tunbridge Wells in collaboration with food blogger Caroline Kings from Eat Around Tonbridge, food photographer Severien Vits, and events organiser and foodie Charlotte Rogers. This book will be a celebration of the chefs, restaurants and producers in West Kent and feature stories and recipes from these businesses. The Cook Book is also a way of bringing the local community together in a celebration of Kent’s wonderful food culture and history. Interest in The Cook Book has been rapidly building with an abundance of local, wellloved eateries already signed up to be featured. They include Whiting and Hammond, The Smallholding, Cocolicious, Fuggles Beer Café, Sulstons, local chef Russell Goad, Papermakers Arms and The Lemon Grove. Bruce McMichael of The Lemon Grove said: “Sharing recipes, ingredients and food is a great way to build a strong, sharing, caring community, and I am proud to be working with Tree of Hope on this amazing book representing many of our towns’ innovative and creative chefs, producers and restaurateurs.” Gill Gibb, CEO at Tree of Hope, said: “We are incredibly excited to be putting together The Cook Book, a celebration of the wonderful food within the local area and also to celebrate a real sense of community and pride in this project. We are great food lovers at Tree of Hope and from talking to people in the area, we believe there are many more that are going to really appreciate this book.” All profits from the book will raise funds for Tree of Hope, which was inspired by the success of the charity’s first annual Dine and Donate campaign which took place earlier this year and raised over £10,000 for the charity. The book will be published on 1st November.


Celebrity opening for Hever’s new play area – and a new Prosecco bar Former JLS star and presenter of CBeebies’ Down on the Farm, JB Gill was joined by his wife Chloe and son Ace to officially open the new play area, Acorn Dell, at Hever Castle. Pupils from Hever Primary School were among the first visitors to try out the new, natural play area aimed at children up to seven years old. Acorn Dell has been designed to allow children to freely explore and use their imagination. Features include a two-metre-high living willow structure, a giant sandpit, a mound with three tunnels to clamber in and a climbing frame. Located in the trees are two lookout platforms linked by a clatter bridge with a slide for making a quick escape. There will also be 42 play boulders of various sizes dotted around the play area to climb on, sit on or to use as stepping stones. JB Gill said: “I have extremely fond memories of visiting Hever Castle as a child and having a lot of fun with my family during the summer holidays. It often seems like such a long time since children were able to safely use the world as their playground. That is one of the reasons why I’m such an advocate for this playground. Not only does it encourage children and their families to experience an important historic part of our national heritage, as I did so many years ago, it also allows them to reconnect with one of the most important things for us to do as humans – play. I know that my own children will have great fun playing here and I hope that it will inspire fun for every child and every family that has the opportunity to play here in the future.” Adults haven’t been forgotten, either, with Hever’s new Prosecco bar on the Loggia terrace overlooking the lake in the Italian Garden. Visitors can enjoy their fizz in a stunning setting, and the bar can also be hired for corporate events and weddings 10

Image credit: Hever Castle & Gardens

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Out and about with Kudos

Thrive: Discovery Weekend Turn to page 18 to find out about this fun, family event...

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What’s on at Hever

From the colours of autumn to Halloween fun and games... There’s plenty for all the family at Hever Castle over the coming months. Handmade & Homegrown Festival, 31st August-2nd September Celebrate all things handmade and homegrown in the heart of the glorious Kent countryside and browse the work of local artisans. The festival includes demonstrations from skilled craftspeople, local craft and food stalls and art displays, plus the annual patchwork and quilting exhibition with workshops for children and adult beginners. Autumn Colour, 1st-28th October As the air turns crisp and a rich display of autumn colour envelops the countryside, pack your walking boots or wellies and head to Hever Castle to enjoy the crunch of leaves underfoot and spectacular autumn tints. The castle is arguably at its romantic best in the autumn when the Boston ivy adorning the front of the Castle turns a vivid shade of red. Visitors will be treated to glorious displays of autumn colour with the rich yellow, red and orange leaves of beech mingling with liquid ambers, tulip trees and Japanese maples, all contributing to an explosion of colour. Halloween Half-Term Fun, 20th-28th October Treat the kids to a spine-tingling programme of entertainment over the half-term break with prizes for the best Halloween costumes. There will be creepy craft workshops, awesome activities and a spooky trail to follow in the grounds. The theme for this year is Haunted Hever.

Image credit: Hever Castle & Gardens

Craft for all

Contemporary Craft Fair returns to Sevenoaks The Sevenoaks Contemporary Craft and Design Fair organised by Craft In Focus is returning to Sevenoaks School from 19th-21st October this year. This exciting event brings the public the very best of contemporary craft and art from some of the leading professional artists and designer makers in the UK today. Visitors will be able to purchase from a stunning treasure trove of original work direct from craftmakers who have a real passion for the work they create and that simply cannot be found among the mass-produced items sold on the high street. It is also possible to commission bespoke pieces for yourself, your home or someone special. Work will include clothing, sculpture, ceramics, handbags, artwork, silversmithing, glass, jewellery, furniture, pewterware, skincare products, candles, textiles, accessories and puzzles. There will also be a number of food stands to include spices, olive oils and balsamic vinegars, alcoholic liqueurs, condiments and nut products. All of the exhibitors at Craft In Focus events have designed and made the work that they display, and have been selected for their individuality and innovation in contemporary design, as well as outstanding technical ability. Because of this, Craft in Focus has earned an enviable reputation for selecting only the very best designers, artists and craftsmen. Local makers exhibiting this year include Betty and Dodge with their engraved English oak gifts from Sutton Valence, silversmith, Car Designs from Maidstone, Jane Bridger Ceramics from Tunbridge Wells, Kara Jewellery from Yalding and Merrywood from Matfield with their handmade soaps, candles and oils. Don’t miss this exciting event to see the latest work by the best of British contemporary craftmakers – rarely is such a wealth of talent seen in one place. Opening times: Friday 11am-5pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am-5pm. Admission: £4. Accompanied under 14s free. Venue address: Sevenoaks School, Sevenoaks, TN13 1HU For further information contact Craft in Focus on 01622 747 325 or visit


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Family favourite

Fun and adventure at Blackland Farm Looking for adventure with your family? Look no further than Blackland Farm Activity Centre in the glorious Sussex countryside, close to East Grinstead. Blackland Farm offers fun, challenging experiences for all ages and abilities including family events, birthday parties, activity days and holidays. Have a go at bungee trampolining, climbing, tunnelling, zip wire, high ropes, archery, canoeing – there really is something for everyone. Fancy extending your visit? Blackland Farm has a wide range of great-value accommodation available, including spacious campsites, a tented village and selfcatering blocks. They also welcome youth groups, schools and corporate groups for team-building days – ask about their packages and how they can help you get the best out of a group visit. Did you know that Blackland Farm is owned by Girlguiding? All profits go back to the charity and help girls across the UK to discover their full potential. To book your visit, call 01342 810 493 or email Blackland Farm, Sussex RH19 4HP

Outdoors with Beatrix Potter

Sissinghurst exhibition reveals writer’s love for nature A lesser known side to Beatrix Potter is being revealed in an exhibition at Sissinghurst Castle Garden, from 27th October to 6th January. Famed for her iconic children’s books, Beatrix was also a naturalist, committed to getting people closer to the outdoors. She understood the benefits of open spaces and the importance of saving them for the nation. She was a keen supporter of the National Trust and in 1943 she left a large bequest of land in the Lake District to the Trust, the largest it had yet received. The exhibition explores the woman behind the books and looks at the plants, animals and landscapes that inspired her. Beatrix was particularly fond of her garden, once saying, “My garden is a case of the survival of the fittest – always very full of flowers and weeds”. Her garden and fascination for flora and fauna inspired her to share her passion for nature with children through the stories and illustrations in her books. A number of original artefacts are being shown as part of the exhibition, which will be on loan from the Frederick Warne Archive. These include a pair of Beatrix’s clogs, complete with mud. There will also be early studies she did of flowers and letters. This year is also the 75th anniversary of Beatrix’s election to the President of the Herdwick Sheep Breeder’s Association. She would have been the first woman president of the Association had it not been for her death in December 1943. She was a champion of nature and outdoor spaces throughout her life and this exhibition celebrates how her legacy lives on through her books and the cause she so loved.

Photo courtesy of Frederick Warne & Co. and The National Trust

Country life

Fair and Food Festival at Chiddingstone Castle The Country Fair and Food Festival will take place in the beautiful grounds of Chiddingstone Castle on Sunday, 9th September from 11am to 5pm. There will be the annual dog show, terrier racing and working dog displays, plus shopping, astronomers, fishing, music, birds of prey, children’s cookery workshops and the family giant wool sack race. You’ll also find delicious food and drink – The Castle’s Tea Tent will be open for cream teas, ice creams and homemade cakes. Entry is £6 for adults and £2 for children aged between 5 and 13 (under 5s free). There will be reduced admission to the castle throughout the day so visitors can also see the fascinating collections of Japanese, Ancient Egyptian, Buddhist, Stuart and Jacobite artefacts. K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8



A weekend of discovery to help you and your family thrive Saturday 29th & Sunday 30th September at The Secret Manor, Tunbridge Wells With over 100 inspirational workshops, classes, talks, therapies, activities and exhibitors all under one roof at Thrive: Discovery Weekend, here’s a guide to help you plan your visit. PLAN YOUR ACTIVITIES • Expert Talks – key speakers on subjects including men's mental health with Al Ferguson from The Dad Network and hypnobirthing with Hollie de Cruz, author of Your Birth, Your Baby (hosted by Mum’s the Word). • Workshops – free workshops on a variety of exciting topics from mindfulness to life coaching, held in a private space in the house. • Meet the Expert – book one-to-one 20-minute private sessions with experts in nutrition, skincare, parenting and more in beautiful bell tents (£20 each, bookable in advance). • T herapy Spa – 20-minute taster sessions in alternative therapies including rose quartz facials and reflexology for just £10 each (bookable in advance). • Live Kitchen – demonstrations from local chefs, restaurants and nutritionists. • Yoga & Pilates Studio – local yoga and pilates studios will be offering free classes throughout the weekend. • Family Activities – including art and craft sessions, mini fit classes, woodland walks, bug hunting and baby yoga.

EAT, BROWSE AND EXPLORE! Enjoy the beautiful surroundings of The Secret Manor, while you browse a wide range of exhibitors, food and drinks from local caterers plus a pop-up book shop. • Beauty & Health – skincare, make-up, supplements, luxury candles, essential oils and more. • Fitness – personal training, cryotherapy, fitness equipment, yoga clothing and more. • T he Market – a mix of stands offering everything from veg box deliveries to kitchen gadgets and condiments. For more information, or to book tickets, visit Early bird tickets £20 per adult until midnight on 14th September (normally £25). Children under 16 go free.

Best foot forward Explore the High Weald with the new Walking Festival Explore one of the UK’s most beautiful medieval landscapes at the first-ever High Weald Walking Festival, from 15th to 23rd September. This new event will showcase the Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) like never before. Experienced and knowledgeable guides will lead a host of inspiring walks suitable for all ages and abilities, with themed routes covering local history, art, literature, wildlife and geology. Covering parts of Kent, Sussex and Surrey, the High Weald is one of 46 designated AONB across the UK, with rolling hills studded with sandstone outcrops, dense woodland, small, irregular-shaped fields, scattered farmsteads and ancient routeways. Breathtaking views, fascinating history and an extensive network of footpaths and ancient byways make it a walker’s paradise. Whether you’re an avid rambler, nature spotter or archaeology buff, or just want to get out in the fresh air and explore your local area, the High Weald Walking Festival has something for everyone to enjoy. For more information visit 18

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Move this Movember with MoRunning!

Whitstable MoRun set to take place for the first time MoRunning have announced they will host MoRuns at 22 different locations across the UK and Ireland throughout the month of ‘Movember’, including in Whitstable, to help raise awareness of men’s health issues and vital funds for the Movember Foundation. MoRunning events are suited to runners of all abilities and of all ages, with a 5K option for the fun runners and a 10K option for those looking for a challenge. There is also a 1.5K Mini Mo run for children aged between 3 and 12 years. In addition, for the first time this year, runners can also take part in a virtual MoRun with runners encouraged to upload a screenshot of their result onto the website, which means that MoRuns can take place anywhere in the world! They will be placed onto the virtual MoRunning leader board and receive a medal and headband. Now in its ninth year, 20,000 male and female runners are expected to take part in MoRuns up and down the country. Runners are encouraged to don moustaches and run in fancy dress to raise vital funds for men’s health through the Movember Foundation with special Mo medals issued for the best-dressed runners at each location. The Whitstable MoRun will take place on 25th November and will see runners go through Hampton Pier. Runners can either run solo or enter as part of a team. Early bird prices start from £10 for the Mini Mo Run for children; £12 for the virtual MoRun; £16 for the 5K option and £19 for the 10K option.

Walk the walk

Support ellenor’s biggest charity event of the year Kent charity ellenor’s biggest event yet, Twilight Walk, on Friday, 21st September at the Cyclopark in Gravesend, will see hundreds of supporters of all ages and abilities participating in an evening of fun, celebration and remembrance. Walkers will be wearing bright orange T-shirts and raising money for the charity which provides vital hospice care to people of all ages, as well as remembering loved ones in a special way. Emma Bowles, Senior Events Fundraiser at ellenor, said: “Following the huge success of last year’s walk, we are looking to raise even more funds to provide the very best palliative and end-of-life care for people with terminal and life-limiting conditions in Kent. Last year’s walk saw a record 782 walkers take part and raise £46,268.31 for ellenor – the most raised from a Twilight Walk to date. “Without the support of the local community, we simply couldn’t do what we do. Twilight Walk is our biggest community event of the year and a wonderful way to show support and raise money for ellenor.”

Hospice help

Fun run in Sevenoaks’ beautiful Knole Park Otford-based charity Hospices of Hope is holding its annual fun run in Knole Park, Sevenoaks, on Sunday, 30th September. Registration starts at 1.30pm. There are 2K and 5K options, with a small prize for the fastest runners, but the emphasis is on fun rather than speed. In previous years, many participants have enjoyed a leisurely afternoon’s walk through the beautiful deer park, and as Knole House opens on Sunday afternoons, it’s a great opportunity to combine culture with exercise. Hospices of Hope’s mascot, Bagpuss, will be taking part in the 2K run and hopes that many families will join him. Before the start there’s the chance to have your face painted with Bagpuss stripes and there will be flapjacks from the charity’s Otford Tearooms for everyone who takes part. Funds raised will go to provide hospice services in Albania, Moldova, Romania and Serbia, where more than 90 per cent of people facing terminal illness do not receive suitable end-of-life care. To book a place, call 01959 525110.

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Head to the theatre

Our pick of what’s on at the Assembly Hall On Saturday, 22nd September, leading UK choir and Early Music ensemble, Ex Cathedra, brings an epic programme with no fewer than four pieces written in 40 parts, including two works composed especially for them. After sold-out performances last year, Russian State Ballet and Opera House are back for their annual UK tour with a mesmerising and captivating full touring ballet production of Swan Lake – stopping off in Tunbridge Wells on Wednesday 17th October. Following the hugely-successful Piano Portraits tour last year, in support of the album of the same name, Rick Wakeman will return to Tunbridge Wells on Thursday 15th November with a new show based on the follow-up release, Piano Odyssey, which will be released September 14th. Rick says, “In the footsteps of Piano Portraits, the new album Piano Odyssey features a collection of music old and new that includes some particular favourites of mine. I’m looking forward to performing tracks from it live on my own odyssey around the UK in the autumn!” Expect a night of beautiful piano arrangements, interspersed with Wakeman’s renowned comedy interludes.

Calling all art lovers

Acclaimed artists at Kent Painters Group exhibition Come along to the Kent Painters Group Art Exhibition at Sevenoaks School on Friday, 26th October and throughout the weekend. Sixty artists are exhibiting and it’s a fantastic opportunity to pick up a piece of affordable artwork for your home. Kent Painters Group is a charity, and the money raised from sponsorship, the bar, food and raffle, along with 25 per cent of the art sales, will be distributed to local mental health and learning disability charities.

Step back in time

Vintage fairs come to town On Saturday, 8th September, Downtown Retro Emporium in Station Parade, Sevenoaks, will be holding its first “Welcome to the Emporium” day, with 20 vintage and retro dealers over two floors selling an eclectic and fabulous range of furniture, fashion, accessories, jewellery, kitchenware and decorative items. Open from 10am till 8pm. The Tunbridge Wells Vintage Fair on 27th October at King Charles Church Hall in Tunbridge Wells has two rooms full of top traders from all over the South East and London selling true vintage fashion from the 1920s to the 1980s (including a specialist in antique kimonos), homeware, costume and antique jewellery, original records and bespoke retro lampshades. Open from 10.30am to 4pm 22

Pumpkin power

Choose your own for the perfect Jack-O’-Lantern Pick your own Halloween pumpkin at Pumpkin Moon in Sandling, near Maidstone, and Rainham. Entry is free, and with over 70 pumpkin varieties to choose from, plus pumpkin painting, a maize maze and face painting, it’s a great family day out. Open 10am-4pm on 6th and 7th October (Maidstone site only); both sites then open on 13th and 14th October and daily between 19th and 28th October. K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8


A feast of words

Top authors and writers for Cranbrook festival Cranbrook Literature Festival – a community celebration of books, reading and writing promoting the joy of reading and the written word – will be held on 28th and 29th September at a variety of venues in Cranbrook, including the town’s windmill! Highlights of the two days include events with broadcaster, journalist and writer Jermey Vine, performance poet, broadcaster and theatre-maker Luke Wright, children’s author and illustrator Jonny Duddle, broadcaster and writer Davina McCall, author of the Clara Vine espionage books Jane Thynne, author and journalist Ann Morgan, novelist and historian Alison Weir, author Louise Dean and endurance athlete Mimi Anderson. Poetry is represented by John Rice and Hubert Moore. For those interested in learning or perfecting their own writing skills, there will be writing workshops with Teena Lyons and Hilary Wilce and also an event with author Louise Dean. A local writers’ forum will also be held for those wanting to know how to get their work to a wider audience. Children’s writers Natasha Farrant, Katie and Kevin Tsang, Kevin Brooks, Sarah Drive and Joe Craig will also be at the festival, along with poetry busker Kornel Kossuth. “Interest in this community festival is already extremely high and we have worked on providing a varied and eclectic mix of authors and writers for the two days with something for everyone,” says Christine Newman, Chairman of the organising committee. “Our aim is to provide as many events for children as possible so they get to hear and meet real live authors, and to encourage young and old to celebrate the written word.”


Three relaxing floatation sessions at Simply Float Imagine gently floating in your own peaceful, temperaturecontrolled, state-of-the-art pod, away from the noise and bustle of the world outside. Stress hormone levels lower as your mind gradually starts to slow down and your body to relax, and aching joints and muscles are supported and soothed by the Epsom salt solution which allows blood to flow freely throughout your body. You emerge feeling relaxed and revitalised – even your skin feels silkier and nourished, thanks to the magnesium boost from the minerals in the Epsom salts. That’s the blissful experience of a floatation experience at Simply Float in Tunbridge Wells – and we’re offering one lucky winner three sessions at Simply Float to enjoy the experience for themselves. To enter, go to and submit your details before the closing date of 31st October 2018. One lucky winner will be picked at random. There is no cash alternative. We will NEVER EVER pass on your details!

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100 reasons to love Britain TV presenter Neil Oliver is on the road to share his passion for British history with his show, The Story of The British Isles in 100 Places


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“The prospect of public speaking always makes me nervous – just as you’d be nervous about making a best man’s speech. The tour is exciting, but nerve-racking. It’s the agony of anticipation, but I know it will ultimately be really enjoyable”

Neil Oliver was born to love Great Britain. During his 20 years travelling to every corner, and whilst filming BBC2’s Coast, he’s fallen in love all over again. And now he’s sharing that love as he tours the country with The Story of The British Isles in 100 Places giving his unique view and understanding of British history. A qualified archaeologist, Neil’s fieldwork experience has covered everything from early Stone Age Scotland to the examination of the Second World War coastal fortifications of Kent and Northern France. He has also trained and worked as a journalist on publications such as The Scotsman and The Guardian. He joined the Coast team as a presenter in 2005 and has also made a number of documentaries including The Face of Britain for Channel 4 and The Celts: Blood, Iron and Sacrifice for BBC2. He has written eight non-fiction books, and two novels. And when he’s not working, he’s at home in Stirling with wife Trudi (they married 23 years after they first met at university) and children Teddy, Evie and Archie. Here, he talks about the inspiration for his show and why he is so passionate about history.

What inspired you to go on tour with The Story of The British Isles in 100 Places?

I saw a flyer for Ray Mears’ show. He was going to be playing at the Albert Halls near us in Stirling. My wife said to me, “Why don’t you do a show like that?” I’ve done lots of book tours and festivals before, and I began to think that the book that had been commissioned from me, The Story of The British Isles in 100 Places, would lend itself particularly well to a tour of Britain. So I decided to do it, and now I’m really excited about it.

Will there be a link with the 100 places?

Yes. The venues on the tour will all be close to the locations I’m talking about. There is a geographic as well as a historical side to this. I wanted to do something simple and straightforward. I’m not an academic, I’m an enthusiast. I have a quite childish excitement about things. The Story of The British Isles in 100 Places connects all of these towns, which are like shining gems on a chain. It’s a great basis for this tour. Interview by James Rampton

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How did you go about selecting those 100 places?

Writing is 50 per cent of what I do, and I’m always thinking about the next book. Over the last 20 years, TV has taken me on a very unusual tour of Britain. As well as iconic places such as the White Cliffs of Dover, Edinburgh and Cardiff, I’ve gone to unexpected, remote places that take quite a lot of getting to. They are places that people have never heard of. So I’d become aware that an idiosyncratic chronology of the British Isles had formed in my head. I had seen everything from very early human settlements around Happisburgh, in Norfolk, where there are footprints from 800,000 years ago, through the Stone and Metal Ages to sites connected to great moments from a more modern era. I thought I could easily choose 100 places – in fact, I could have chosen 500! I realised there was a story to be told from very early to modern times by introducing people to these places.

Do you have a favourite?

That is very hard because there are so many places in the British Isles that I love. For instance, Iona is somewhere I’ve been a lot over the years, and I love it. It’s a great centre of Christianity, but beyond that it’s a very spiritual place because of the look of it. It’s a little island with a beautiful shape. It has turquoise seas, pink rocks and a wonderful abbey that dates back many centuries. It’s a lovely, relaxing place to be. I also love Avebury in Wiltshire. I was taken there as an archaeology student in my teens, and I’ve visited it many times since. Whatever you think magic is, there is magic in Avebury. There is something there that just lets your imagination run free. It makes you think differently about the world. It’s a very special place. I also love St Michael’s Mount in Cornwall. It’s a splendid site that has all these amazing legends about giants and dragons associated with it.

Any others?

The Tower of London is a fascinating place. It’s an icon. I’ll be inviting audiences to look at it in a different way. It’s dwarfed by modern London and almost looks like a toy. But the parish church inside it, St Peter ad Vincula, is astonishing. In front of the altar is a shallow grave containing the bodies of Anne Boleyn, Catherine Howard, Lady Jane Grey, Thomas More, William Lord and many more. It’s the antithesis of Westminster Abbey, where the glorious dead are revered.

Are you looking forward to performing live?

Yes, although I am nervous about it. People make the assumption that if you’re on television, you’re used to being looked at. I don’t deal with an audience in my TV work. I’m just with a cameraman, a soundman and a director. So the prospect of public speaking always makes me nervous – just as you’d be nervous about making a best man’s speech. The tour is exciting, but nerve-racking. It’s the agony of anticipation, but I know it will ultimately be really enjoyable. I take great pleasure in telling stories, and I can’t wait to share them with people.

How do you maintain your passion for your subject?

I’m always in the position of finding out that I don’t know anything. Every day is a school day. I’m always realising that however many


interesting facts I’ve picked up, I don’t know the half of it. I’m always thinking, “I don’t know enough”. That keeps me fascinated.

Do you view history as a universal subject?

Yes. Whether you’re rich or poor, educated or not, everybody is interested in history. It’s the stuff people talk about. It’s why we are the way we are. That’s why it’s so important to study history. It’s such a shame that it’s been downgraded below IT and business studies.

Were your parents passionate about history?

Yes. My dad was a salesman, not a history teacher, but when we were children he loved taking us to historic sites. He is a great lover of the West Highlands. We went to places like Glencoe and he was the first person to tell me about the Massacre of 1692. My dad’s enthusiasm for those places was infectious. I now have the same love of the West Highlands, probably absorbed from him.

What can we learn from the past?

Everything makes more sense when you study history. The more history you read, the less judgemental you become. All the things that are happening now have happened before. It’s always been K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8


the case that people can’t get on with each other. If kids out there are worried about relations between the West and Russia, you can tell them that we’ve fallen out before. We’ve also been at war with America. Countries reach a high point, and then they go through low points. That’s all explained by history.

Does being famous ever get to you?

No, it’s a manageable level of fame. Most days someone will say hello based on the fact that they recognise me from TV. Usually it’s something very pleasant like, “I love that film you made about Cornwall or Egypt”. It’s not a level of fame that means I can’t go out of the house. I’m not followed by paparazzi. It’s really nice.

You have presented several series of Coast. Why has that programme struck such a chord?

I’ve now done series on the coasts of the British Isles, Brittany, Normandy, Scandinavia, parts of the Baltic, Australia and New Zealand. We haven’t quite gone all over the world yet, but we’ll keep trying! The programme has a fairly simple premise. It invites people to remember and celebrate places close at hand that they might have forgotten about or not thought of since they were children. People love to be shown their own country from a different angle. Coast has these amazing aerial shots, and people get a kick from seeing that in our show.

Do you think we often underestimate the wonders that are on our own doorstep?

Yes. The advent of accessible air travel has encouraged people to think that if you want an adventure, you have to travel 10,000 miles. A couple of generations now think that to be on holiday you have to be at least in Europe and probably in Asia. So our homeland has been not exactly neglected, but people have forgotten what’s here. It’s quite understandable. Time is precious, and if you only have two weeks a year for a family holiday, you may well want to go somewhere like Bali. But people can forget that Pembrokeshire and Cornwall are wonderful, too. Coast has shown people the far north of Scotland, the Atlantic coast of Ireland and Cumberland and made them think, “My God, there are stunning places within an hour’s drive of me”.

Why is the coast such an essential part of British culture?

It’s part of our psyche. As Winston Churchill and others have pointed out, we are an island race. In the British Isles, you’re never more than 70 miles from the coast. It is ever-present. For most of us growing up, holidays are about getting to the beach. Even though the weather is often inclement, when you go to the coast, it’s a completely different landscape for people who live in towns.

The coast is vital to our history as well, isn’t it?

Yes. For thousands of years, our trade has always come by the sea. We have defended our coastline from invasions and welcomed new arrivals there. Our history has always happened through the coast. Think of 1066 or Henry VIII and the Cinque Ports – so much of our history is about the coast. We are not a big island, and ours is a coastal story. The coast is woven through the tapestry of Britain. K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8

Tell us about your new novel, The Black Glass.

It’s a kind of sequel to my last novel, Master of Shadows. It has the same central character. He comes back from the Siege of Constantinople in 1453 and finds himself swept up in the events of the Wars of the Roses. It involves a real artefact from a real person, Dr John Dee, who was known as Queen Elizabeth’s magician. He had a “Black Mirror,” which was part of the kit he used for magic and is now in the British Museum. I created a complete fiction around that.

Finally, what do you hope that audiences will take away from The Story of The British Isles in 100 Places?

I hope people will go away with the same passion for history that I have. History can sometimes feel like a dry and dusty subject you studied at school. But I find it is as thrilling as any Marvel movie!

Neil Oliver and The Story of The British Isles in 100 Places is at the Assembly Hall Theatre, Tunbridge Wells on 11th October. / Box office: 01892 530613 @ahttw

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Double act Sally-Ann Carroll and Team Kudos spent a fun-packed day at The Warren Restaurant in Tunbridge Wells dressing up Vivienne Seales-Ball and her husband Pete in tasty new togs for autumn

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Vintage style

Black and gold 1970’s maxi dress, belt, snake cuff and suede sandals all from Belle Empire Boutique, For appointments and information on local pop-up events, call 07596 132606. Earrings, Vivienne’s own.


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Smile please

Dark blue floral shirt, £75, by Giordano and check trousers, £115, by Meyer, both from County Clothes in Canterbury, Tenterden, Reigate and Sevenoaks. Follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Shoes, Pete’s own.

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Lady in red

Red belted dress, £149, and gold shoes, £159, both from Hobbs. Black onyx ring, £36, by Five Nordic Swans, from Room On The Row, Forest Row.


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Essential little extras

Black square onyx ring, £36, by Five Nordic Swans, from Room On The Row, Forest Row. Drop earring by Pilgrim from a selection

Bird in hand

Forest green velvet biker jacket, £150, black faux-leather jeans, £150, bracelet, £20, all from Pure Collection. Red coral ring, £36, by Five Nordic Swans, from Room On The Row, Forest Row. Shoes and earrings, Vivienne’s own.

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Check mate

Grey check jacket £329, by Digel. Tan and blue check shirt, £59, by Eterna. Dark blue trousers, £119, by Meyer. Camel silk knitted bow-tie, £35. All from County Clothes in Canterbury, Tenterden, Reigate and Sevenoaks. Follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. Shoes, Pete’s own.


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Shine on

Silver and black 1970’s maxi skirt, black embellished 1960’s top, bangle and shoes all from Belle Empire Boutique, For appointments and information on local pop-up events, call 07596 132606. Silver ball ring, £43, by Five Nordic Swans, from Room On The Row, Forest Row. Earrings, Vivienne’s own

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Play it again

Navy jumpsuit, £129, necklace, £65, and gold shoes, £159, all from Hobbs. Earrings, Vivienne’s own. Red check shirt, £80, and ‘Dusty’ jeans, £95, by R M Williams, all from County Clothes in Canterbury, Tenterden, Reigate and Sevenoaks. Follow on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram


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Note the ring

Selected rings by Five Nordic Swans, available from Room On The Row, Forest Row. For enquiries and stockists, email or call 07790 990 898

CREDITS Fashion Editor: Sally-Ann Carroll Photographer: Matt Harquail Hair: Chantelle Ryman at Morgan Hodges using Oribe and Kerastase haircare products Make-Up: Gemma Pass, make-up artist Venue: The Warren Restaurant, 5a High Street, Tunbridge Wells Vivienne and Pete were our fabulous models for the day. They are married and live in Tunbridge Wells with their two-year-old son, Lenny. They both work for law firms in London and Tunbridge Wells respectively. You can find Vivienne on Instagram @bajanbrummy Would you like to model for us? Email

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Get the look

Local make-up artist Gemma Pass and hairstylist Chantelle Ryman at Morgan Hodges tell you how to recreate Vivienne’s look from our fashion shoot


1. Prime the skin using MAC Prep+Prim Natural Radiance primer. 2. Apply MAC Studio Fix Fluid Foundation. Set with Studio Fix Perfecting Powder. 3. Shape the brows and add definition with Illamasqua Precision Brow Gel in Strike. 4. Prime the eyes with Urban Decay Eye Primer. 5. To get a smoky eye, use Urban Decay Mabel Heat palette and finish with Illamasqua Powder Eye Shadow to add a touch of shimmer. 6. Line the eyes using MAC Fluidline Black Touch Gel Liner. 7. Apply Eylure Fleur and Fabulous lashes. For a more dramatic look, add a brown liner under the eyes. 8. Contour face with Illamasqua Contour Palette and highlight cheekbones with Soft and Gentle by MAC. Add a little Peach Blush by MAC to the apples of the cheeks. 9. L ine lips with Boldly Bare Lip Pencil, then apply Velvet Teddy Lipstick and finish off with Bare Necessity Lip Gloss to the corner of the lips. All MAC. 10. Finish with a spritz of Setting Spray by MAC.


1. Start off with a clean head of hair using a shampoo and conditioner suitable for your hair type. 2. Apply a hazelnut-size drop of Kiehl’s Crème with Silk Groom all over. 3. Wind your hair in sections working from the back to the front. 4. Add Oribe Dry Texturizing Spray to give it that next-day look. 5. Twist one side of your hair and pin behind your ear, pulling it out slightly so it’s loose. 6. Apply a small amount of Mythic Hair Oil for shine and then spray Kerastase K Laque Noire. Sunflower silk ruffle top, £110, from Jigsaw


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New trends for autumn You’ll fall for these latest looks from Sahara

Sahara Printed Hemp Jersey Dress, £169

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Sahara Painted Cube Print Dress, £169

Sahara Crinkle Gingham Shirt, £139

Sahara Cashmere Blend Relaxed Sweater, £139

Sahara Fine Stripe Linen Dress, £179






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Beauty notes The latest products and news 1. Winner of the Best International Skincare Brand at the 2018 Beauty Shortlist Awards, Dafna’s Personal Skincare worked with scientists to combine Ayurvedic principles and essential oils with innovative biotechnology in its nature-meets-science, graceful-ageing skincare range. It has been formulated to target both external and internal factors that can contribute to early skin ageing and accumulated skin damage. Recovery Cleanser, £39.50, Revival Bio-active Mask, £36, Anti-ageing & Glow Serum, £65, Eye Care, £50, Moisture + Cream, £60, and Nutrition Night Treatment, £75. Available from and 2. Evolve Radiant Glow Mask is 100 per cent natural, blended with raw cacao powder and clay to revitalise and purify, and coconut granules to buff the skin to silky perfection. Organic baobab-seed oil smoothes and nourishes, and natural sugar extracts turn the exfoliating mask into a creamy milk on contact with water so that it rinses off easily, leaving skin smooth and moisturised. Fragranced with organic vanilla oil and the delicious scent of chocolate, it smells good enough to eat! £20 46

3. Susanne Kaufmann Essential Oil Bath For The Senses combines the oils of the ylang-ylang tree, patchouli plant and lavender to create a relaxing experience after a strenuous day. The velvety consistency and beneficial aroma of real essential oils nourishes and pampers both the skin and the senses. £44 4. Honoré des Prés Love Coconut Eau de Parfum is a delicious scent made from the pure extract of white coconut milk and fragrant coriander leaf, with heart notes of tonka bean and vanilla bourbon and base notes of white cedar and organic coconut essence. Delicious! £72 5. Enjoy your coffee in a different way. This Arabic Coffee, Cardamom and Ginger soap helps combat cellulite and restore a youthful glow to the face and body, working as both a shampoo and body bar. The high caffeine content in coffee beans stimulates the circulation, which can help treat acne and minimise cellulite. It’s also a brilliant exfoliator, removing dead skin on the scalp to encourage healthy hair growth. £22 K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8


Rice, rice baby Healthy and naturally gluten-free, rice is the symbol of life and fertility, and the main food for half the world’s population. National Rice Week from 17th-23rd September is the perfect time to try some imaginative recipes using this storecupboard essential

Turn to page 54 for this recipe...

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Baby Spinach, Date, Feta and Black Rice Salad The sweetness of the dates when paired with a salty ingredient like feta work so well together. This salad is an excellent way to start a meal. Venere black rice is often known also as purple rice Serves 4


• 75g walnuts, lightly toasted, chopped • 200g baby spinach leaves, well washed • 1 medium red onion, peeled, thinly sliced • 120g good quality ready to eat dates • 75g feta cheese • 150g Riso Gallo Venere Rice • 1 small red chilli, deseeded, finely chopped

For the mint-cumin dressing


• 3 tbsp white wine vinegar • 6 tbsp olive oil • 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice • Handful of roughly-torn mint leaves • Sea salt, good pinch of ground cumin

Method 1. Place the venere rice in a small pan, add 350ml water and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 25-30 minutes until just tender. Drain in a colander and allow to cool. 2. To make the dressing, place all the ingredients except the mint leaves in a bowl, whisk together, add the torn mint leaves. Season to taste.

3. To prepare the salad, place the spinach leaves in a bowl, add the dates, cooked black rice, chilli, red onions and walnuts and season lightly with salt and pepper. 4. Add enough dressing and toss gently together.

5. Dress in a salad bowl, then grate the feta over the salad liberally and serve.

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Thai Prawn & Mango Rice Salad

A zesty, refreshing Thai salad with succulent king prawns and juicy mango pieces. Perfect as a starter or as a light, summery lunch Serves 4 Ingredients

• 2 trays VeeTee Thai Jasmine Rice • 1 large fresh mango, sliced • ½ cucumber, sliced • 1 large handful fresh mint leaves • 350g cooked prawns • Juice of 1-2 limes


1. H  eat the rice in the microwave according to pack instructions. Tip into a large bowl and fork over to separate the rice grains. Cool.

2. Toss the mango, cucumber, mint leaves and prawns into the rice and dress with the fresh lime juice. Serve.

Tip: A mixture of herbs such as Thai basil, mint and coriander work well in this recipe. If you have some coconut milk or cream to use up, add a few tablespoons to the rice with the lime juice for a creamy flavour.


Gluten-free, dairy-free, pescatarian

Rice & Quinoa Veggie Burgers

A perfect recipe if you’re looking for a vegetarian option. These burgers are easy to make, healthy and ready in just 25 minutes! Ingredients

• 1 tray VeeTee Wholegrain Brown & Quinoa Rice • 1 small onion, finely chopped • 1 tsp ground cumin • 25g fresh mixed herbs, finely chopped (we use basil, parsley and coriander) • 1 carrot, grated • 1 egg white • 2 tbsp olive oil • Seasoning, to taste


1. Heat the tray of VeeTee Wholegrain Brown Rice & Quinoa according to pack instructions then empty into a food mixer and whizz up along with the onion, cumin, herbs, carrot and egg white. Season well and mix again. 2. Remove the mixture, and, using clean hands, shape the mixture into 6 burger patty shapes. 3. Add the oil to a large frying pan and warm over a medium heat.

4. Place the burgers in the pan and fry for 4 minutes on each side, taking care when turning the burgers over so they don’t break up. 5. Serve when golden, with salad and burger buns.


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Gluten-free, pescatarian, vegetarian


Radicchio and Taleggio Risotto

A great traditional risotto recipe from the Veneto region, a ‘must’ to enjoy from December to April, when all the varieties of radicchio come into season. Radicchio is becoming more and more popular in the UK and all varieties will work for this recipe. Taleggio is a strong yet creamy cheese that goes very well with the bitterness of radicchio and the acid hint of the wine Serves 4 Ingredients

• 350g radicchio (2 whole radicchios) • 2 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil • Salt and pepper • 1 garlic clove, smashed • 20ml of white wine vinegar • 20ml red wine • 30g onion, finely chopped • 280g Riso Gallo Carnaroli rice • 100ml dry white wine • 1 litre vegetable or chicken stock • 100g Taleggio cheese, roughly chopped • 10g unsalted butter • 10g grated Grana Padano cheese • Parsley to garnish

Method 1. Wash the radicchios and let them dry over a kitchen towel.

2. Separate the outer bigger leaves from the core of each radicchio. Cut the very red leaves into “tagliatelle” and leave them in cold water overnight if possible to reduce the bitterness. 3. Drain well and roast the radicchio in a large pan with a drizzle of olive oil, a pinch of salt and pepper and the smashed garlic clove for a couple of minutes. Add the vinegar and the red wine and let the alcohol evaporate. Cool immediately.

4. Cut the pale cores of radicchio very thinly and leave to one side. 5. Gently fry the chopped onion in a small casserole with a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and a pinch of salt for about 1015 minutes on a low heat, until well golden and caramelised. Keep to one side. 54

6. In a large casserole, start to roast the rice on a low heat with a pinch of salt, without adding oil or fat. In this way, the heat reaches the core of each rice grain resulting in more uniform, al dente rice. Keep stirring the rice, so it doesn’t catch on the bottom of the pan or burn. When the rice is very hot, add the white wine and set your timer for 15 minutes. Let the alcohol evaporate, then add the simmering stock a ladle at a time, little by little. Stir the rice occasionally. Halfway through the cooking, add the caramelised onion to the rice. 7. Once the time is up, add the cooked radicchio to the risotto.

8. Add the Taleggio cheese and butter to the rice. Stir energetically to incorporate extra air until the risotto is nice and creamy. Season to taste. 9. Serve straight away, garnished with the thinly-sliced raw radicchio, the parsley and a little grated Grana Padano cheese.

Recipe by Danilo Cortellini

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High-speed renovation Designer Emma Carlow and husband Graham completely renovated their Victorian end-of-terrace property, from replacing the roof to extending the kitchen, in just six weeks

About the owners: Designer Emma Carlow and her husband Graham, a photographer, live there with son Finn, 15, and two cats, Squid and Peck.

Words by Katie Treggiden. Photography by Bruce Hemming. Styling by Sally Maton. Homeowner’s wallpaper brand:


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Emma, a wallpaper designer, husband Graham and son Finn were living in a rented house when they spotted their current home on the same street, so they knew exactly what to expect. “This house was almost exactly the mirror image of the one we were living in four doors down,” says Emma. “So I thought we would know exactly what we wanted to do to it.” In the end, the couple lived in the house for a year before starting renovations and found that one change led to another. “Replacing the main staircase meant reconfiguring the bathroom, masses of extra insulation in the roof meant we had to have paddle stairs up to the top floor…” she says. “In the end, we didn’t do anything we had planned to!” Despite not sticking to their original plans, it was a pretty efficient renovation. The family moved out for six weeks while a team of builders from Derbyshire headed up by Emma’s dad – a retired builder himself – moved in. Emma and her dad project-managed and in six weeks the team fitted a new staircase, replaced the roof – fitting a dormer to create space for an en-suite bathroom for Finn, built extensive bespoke storage for Graham’s photography equipment in the spare room, replaced the family bathroom, and extended the kitchen into the side return. The first job was the main staircase. “We wanted new stairs, because the original ones were just too steep,” says Emma. But K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8

altering the staircase meant re-planning the family bathroom to create the necessary space. So they took the opportunity to replace everything and create a light, bright family bathroom. A dormer in the roof created enough space for an en-suite bathroom for Finn’s bedroom. “We let Finn have that room, so when he has friends over he takes them up there and we’ve still got the rest of the house,” she laughs. Emma’s dad advised them to add insulation not only to the roof but also to every external wall – being a Victorian house, the property doesn’t have cavity walls. This meant losing three inches around the edge of every room, and compromising on paddle stairs up to Finn’s room, but Emma says it was worth it: “We hardly ever have to heat the upstairs of the house because it is just so warm,” she says. Once the top floor was done, the builders moved downstairs to the spare room on the first floor. “We call it the Mother Cupboard,” laughs Emma, “partly because it’s where my mother stays when she visits, but mostly because it is one mother of a cupboard! There is as much storage as you could possibly fit in there – it’s basically a garage in spare-room form.” Graham and Emma both planned to work from home and while Emma now has an office with friends in Lewes, Graham stores all of his photography equipment in this room. 57

The final project in this speedy renovation was the kitchen. “We had inherited a 1980’s kitchen which was tiny, dangerous and horrible,” says Emma. “You could stand in the middle and touch two opposite walls at the same time.” By extending the kitchen to fill the side return and using extensive glazing, they created a spacious, light-filled, family kitchen. “It has made a massive difference – we doubled the size of the kitchen,” she says. “And the glass extension means that the whole of the downstairs is so much lighter.” From start to finish, the whole project took just six weeks. Graham was working in New York for five of the six weeks, and Emma stayed in a local holiday cottage with Finn, so she was able to keep an eye on progress by visiting every day. “It honestly wasn’t that stressful,” she insists. “I loved seeing everything stripped totally bare, so you could see the shell of the house, but my favourite moment was Graham’s reaction when he got back from New York – I think he was quite impressed!” She does admit there was one tense situation when a neighbour got stuck behind the concrete lorry in their cul-de-sac. “The glass extension was being put up at the back and the concrete was arriving for the floor all on the same day, so it was already quite a stressful day,” she says. “Then we trapped a neighbour, who needed to collect her son from school, on the wrong side of the concrete lorry and couldn’t move it. Luckily my car was the right side of the lorry, so we found a solution.” Inspired by a love of colour and mid-century design, the interior came together quite naturally – with a little help from Pinterest. “I think this was when I first fell in love with Pinterest – I put together a ‘house’ mood board and immediately started to see patterns, such as certain colours, emerging,” says Emma. “Graham and I have always been quite flamboyant with colour. We both went to art school, so perhaps we’ve been inspired by the artists we admire. I am a massive Alexander Calder fan and he uses a lot of primary colours – and I also love Alexander Girard and, of course, Charles and Ray Eames.” The vision for the space was Emma’s but Graham did have some input, such as choosing the yellow for the stairs and the mango orange for the kitchen cupboards. “I let him choose two colours,” she laughs, “but I’ve got to hand it to him – they are pretty good colours.”


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Predominantly white walls provide a backdrop for mid-century furniture and a colourful collection of art and personal objects that are displayed throughout the house. The couple’s existing dining table provided a starting point, soon enhanced by the 1960’s teak display unit – a lucky find on eBay at just £400 that turned out to be the Danish PS System. “The whole scheme was designed around our dining-room table, because we are a family that sits at the table rather than in the lounge,” explains Emma. “That is where we entertain, where we work, where I host a craft night once a week – it’s a cliché, but it really is the heart of our home.” Emma bought basic kitchen cabinets and commissioned a local carpenter to make the doors, which she painted bright orange. “The kitchen floor stayed concrete for ages, because we didn’t know what to do with it,” says Emma. “But luckily, we live next door to the principle of the Inchbald School of Design and he said, ‘You’ve got to go with teal!’ so teal lino it was!” Now that the whirlwind renovation is complete, what does the family make of their colourful home? “What I love about our house is it’s incredibly welcoming,” says Emma. “Nothing is hidden – it’s all very open. Everybody knows where everything is, so they just help themselves. It’s a really welcoming, friendly house.” And not bad for six weeks’ work. 60

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Make a statement Don’t be afraid to go for bold designs and strong colours in your sitting room and bedroom – sofas and beds can create the perfect focal point It’s easy to play it safe when choosing a new sofa or bed; after all they are going to last you for many years. But being bold can bring character to your home and make a real statement. Choosing a colour scheme can be a bit daunting if you’re starting from scratch, so don’t stray too far away from what you already love. Take a look in your wardrobe and see what colours you choose to wear, and build from there. The fact that you may want to adapt colour schemes in the future shouldn’t put you off going for something dramatic. There are ways that you can adapt what you have – try throws, cushions and other accessories. You can’t go wrong by applying layers of colour and texture. Chintz and clashing colours and patterns are all the rage. Botanical prints are currently very popular and work perfectly with colourful velvets, which don’t show any signs of being a passing phase. If you need help, head to Sofas & Stuff in Eridge, near Tunbridge Wells. They have an extensive range of fabrics, along with sofas and beds, and will help you choose the perfect furniture for your home. And during September, if you buy two items, you’ll get 20% off the second one!

Poplar Chair in Pink House Design colours (from £852 in a plain fabric)

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Hampton Large Sofa in Bluebell and Gray fabric (from £1,518 in a plain fabric)

Redchurch King size bed in Linwood Omega multi coloured stain resistant velvet (from £1,377 in a plain fabric)

Big Softie Large corner group with stool in Linwood Omega multi coloured stain resistant velvet (from £3,733 in a plain fabric)



Bold as brass Metals are on-trend in home design right now – and kitchens are no exception If you’re a metallic magpie who covets all things shiny then you’re probably in your element right now. Everywhere you look you can see accents of brass, copper, silver and bronze… and the kitchen is no exception. We spoke to Kent-based kitchen designers and manufacturers Rencraft to find out how to add metal to your home. “Cooler metals such as stainless steel or chrome have been popular with our clients for several years now,” says Sarah Cooper, Senior Designer at Rencraft’s Sevenoaks showroom “But in the last few months it’s the warmer metallic tones that have really started to come through. I recently designed a kitchen for a client who selected satin copper handles which were paired with copper pendant lights above the island. The end result was really quite beautiful. “As well as copper, brass handles and accessories are also becoming popular. There’s a huge choice of finishes, too – everything from antique or burnished brass for an understated, rustic feel to polished brass for those who prefer something a bit more modern and luxurious.” “Handles aren’t the only way to add metallic tones to your kitchen design,” adds Sarah. “We recently sourced a bronze custom-finished Quooker tap for one client. Mirrored splashbacks are another option, as are mirrored panels or plinths which have the added advantage of helping to reflect light around the room further enhancing the sense of space. “Metallic can be used elsewhere in the home too. We recently designed a beautiful, bespoke Curiosity Cabinet with brass back panels and brass handles, hinges and door catches, demonstrating how popular the metallic trend has become. We offer hinges and catches in a choice of finishes, giving our clients complete harmony across their whole design.” Rencraft are award-winning bespoke kitchen designers and manufacturers who have been based in Kent for almost 40 years. With their own workshop just outside Sevenoaks, they are proud to design and manufacture kitchens and furniture for clients in Kent, the UK and even Europe. Rencraft – Unit 9, Chart Farm, Sevenoaks TN15 0ES. Tel: 01732 762682 Rencraft – 81 Calverley Road, Tunbridge Wells TN1 2UY. Tel: 01892 520730 64

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65 £675,000 Mayfield A beautifully presented and skilfully extended detached family home, providing open, flowing and bright accommodation to the ground floor, four bedrooms, bathroom and en-suite shower room, with lovely South facing gardens and parking, all in a quiet corner of this popular village. NO CHAIN

£965,000 Mayfield In an incredibly quiet spot, tucked away yet accessible, this modern, bright, open-plan home offers deceptively spacious and flexible accommodation across two floors, plus a substantial garage offering annex potential, planning permission to add an orangery, all set within immaculately landscaped front and rear gardens. NO ONWARD CHAIN.

£950,000 Mayfield The major portion of a substantial Period house, enjoying South facing rear gardens, stunning views and an incredible roof terrace/ observatory. Comprising beautifully proportioned and characterful accommodation to comprise six bedrooms, two bathrooms, three reception rooms and kitchen arranged over two floors. NO CHAIN.

Specialists in the Sale and Letting of Rural and Village property Mayfield Office 3 Church View House High Street, Mayfield East Sussex TN20 6AB 01435 874450 66

Wadhurst Office The Clock House High Street, Wadhurst East Sussex TN5 6AA 01892 782287

Lettings Department 0845 8737493 Associated London Office 119-121 Park Lane London W1K 7AC 020 K 74090371 U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8


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Garden notes

A Corker of a summer for garden renovations

With the above-average temperatures we’ve seen over this summer, it’s not surprising that more time has been spent outdoors than inside recently. All this extra sunshine has allowed people to enjoy their gardens as an extra room, and Corker Outdoor Living and Landscape Supplies have noticed many choosing to invest in this extra space. Harry Corkery, Operations Director of Corker says, “We’ve had all the weather extremities this year, from the significant snow and cold snap in February and March to the fabulous summer heat. It’s great that people have had the weather to appreciate their gardens more and we want to help make it a space they can utilise and enjoy.”

The three-acre Corker site features 13 individual show gardens, which demonstrate how even small spaces can be put to best use. Along with all this inspiration there is a very knowledgeable team on hand to help, and all products on show can be purchased directly from Corker, making it a perfect one stop shop for all your garden needs (apart from the flowers)! Corker is on the A228 near Paddock Wood and open MondaySaturday. You can also check out the Corker website; or give the team a call on 01892 833 325 for any product information or sales enquiries.

10 tips for your garden this month Advice from Tim Sykes of Gardenproud

Gosh, what a summer we’ve enjoyed. As we look to 2019, I suspect most people will be thinking, “Let’s have more irrigation!” In the meantime, here are my tips for your garden now. 1.Take stock of the condition of plants and remove any failures from the summer period, replace shrubs and make a note to replace any perennials for spring 2019 2.Deadhead any flowers 3.Cut back and divide any herbaceous perennials that have finished flowering 4.Clean out your greenhouse or cold frames so they are ready for your next planting 5.Net your pond before the autumn leaf fall 6.Research, buy and plant your spring flowering bulbs 7.Prune the wisteria if you haven’t already completed this 8.Start to plan pruning of your roses 9.It’s getting late, but prune back your lavender about two-thirds before autumn sets in 10.In the kitchen garden, lift any remaining potatoes and plant out mint and parsley on your window sills Enjoy the garden. For further information and advice with your garden, see Contact Tim Sykes at Gardenproud on 07725 173820 or visit him at


Heads up!

Top local head teachers give their views

It’s the start of a new school year, so heads tell us what they have planned Teresa Rapley, Head of Nursery

Battle Abbey School, Bexhill and Battle Independent co-educational day and boarding school for boys and girls aged 3 months-18 Our Early Years opens 50 weeks a year so there’s not really a deep breath or even a pause before the start of our new school year – we will be working right through! A lot of careful planning went on this summer as we are in the process of coordinating our final move into our new purpose-built Home of Early Years in the grounds of our Prep School in Bexhill. As we are open 8am-6pm, it doesn’t leave much additional time for meetings so we have been through an extensive amount of pre-planning to make sure the transition is as seamless as possible for our children and families. Our new Home of Early Years enables us to accept babies from three months of age and children through to the end of their Reception year, so there’s a lot to be considered. We are going through a rigorous process of consultation to make sure we get it just right. Our new home offers more space, and we must be doing something right as we are already nearly full for September. I think our current parents do a fantastic job of promoting us locally! It’s been great to see our plans come to life and our new home take shape. The staff, parents and children are all really enthusiastic about our new home for our Early Years. Exciting times!

Christine Flowers, Principal

Bricklehurst Manor School, Stonegate Mainstream independent school for pupils aged 3-11 2018-19 is another landmark year for Bricklehurst Manor, as we celebrate 60 years as an independent school. Since it was first registered in 1959, under the ownership of an extraordinary woman, the late Liz Garvin, who, as it turned out, had a remarkable story of her own to tell about her part in the Second World War. Her hard work and integrity are the rocks upon which Bricklehurst was established and upon which we continue to build. We encourage all of our pupils to work hard, thereby creating a solid and worthwhile work ethic for their future life. We also encourage our children to have fun and this year we intend to celebrate our diamond jubilee with even more fun than usual. We’re planning inspirational, educational, memory-making curriculumbased activities, starting the celebrations with a whole-school trip to London to see The Lion King, where we can, like Simba, think about unlocking our true potential and understand the values which really matter in life. Whilst having fun, we won’t forget to address the academic side of life for which we have an excellent reputation. We shall be working towards Kent selection 11+ and the entrance examinations for the schools of choice, alongside studying Lamda, English Speaking and Music tuition, with exams if desired. We take our sport seriously and offer so many sports for our pupils alongside extra-curricular clubs; all of this with wraparound care and holiday activities, too. Bricklehurst really is an extraordinary and inspirational place to be and we want to see as many old pupils as possible back here for a reunion party to help us celebrate 60 years! 74

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Hilary Blake, Headmistress

Sacred Heart School, Wadhurst Independent Catholic mixed primary school for 2-11 One thing I have found during my time as a head is that even the best-laid plans can sometimes go awry! Our priorities for the academic year ahead include focusing on physical and mental health and wellbeing. The link between the two is well documented. We all need to become better at building emotional resilience, at talking about mental health and raising awareness so that we intervene more effectively. This year we introduced the Daily Mile and from September it will be embedded for all pupils in addition to their weekly PE lessons. The reasons are twofold: to improve the physical fitness of all pupils and reap the associated benefits in the classroom, which include higher levels of concentration and readiness to learn. To further enhance provision for physical activity, we will continue to develop our plan for the installation of an allweather pitch in an attempt to overcome the challenges of a playing field built on Sussex clay! For a significant number of our pupils, I suspect that their future will be online, working in a digital dimension. With this in mind we are updating our facilities to enhance the focused IT learning area. We have to teach not only the skills but, just as importantly, how to be discerning, to be discreet even, and to use the power of the digital world safely: that aspect is a regular feature of our development planning. School is about education and while we aspire to academic excellence, we also take a holistic view, aiming to inspire in every child a curiosity in the world around them; a desire to learn, to be independent; a willingness to take risks, learn from mistakes and to celebrate success in whatever form it takes. As ever, the coming year promises to be exciting, fulfilling and will no doubt bring a few surprises along the way.

Mike Piercy, Headmaster

The New Beacon, Sevenoaks Independent preparatory school for boys aged 4-13 The new year is like a clean, fresh page: new beginnings for each pupil; for teachers, new classes with new challenges; for Heads, strategic goals. For The New Beacon, our exciting challenge this year is to create a new curriculum for Year 8 from September 2019. For many years, Senior School entry has been dependent on the Common Entrance exam, taken in June of Year 8 – but no longer, with many places offered in Year 6 or 7. Within an academic school, our challenge is to create a curriculum which meets a number of educational aims. One of them is intellectual curiosity: asking questions, debating, enquiring, researching, working independently. And through the study of philosophy and philosophical thinking, through extended projects and other means, developing thinking skills. Academic rigour and study skills are paramount. Many boys (we’re a boys’ school!) who have taken Common Entrance over the years have recognised the positive learning habits it instils, preparing them effectively for GCSE and later learning. Part of our programme for Year 8 will involve examined subjects, marked independently, giving the boys a benchmark of achievement while also reflecting excellent teaching. We also offer breadth. From the arts, performing arts, music, technology, presentation (paper, digital and public speaking) and sports, we aim to educate every corner of the brain, nurturing character and confidence. Through all of the above we aim to place boys in selective senior schools, ready and confident to face new challenges: love learning, love life! K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8



Andrew Webster, Headmaster

The Mead School, Tunbridge Wells Co-educational preparatory school for boys and girls aged 3-11 The Mead has always offered an outstanding education at an affordable price. Given this starting point, we’re thrilled with the scale of provision improvement planned for the next academic year. The diggers and rollers are currently carving out a brand-new astro pitch (very few passers-by appreciate the space we have, given our location) and sports provision is set to be transformed with weekly fixtures for all Juniors (Y3-6) and a new Head of Girls’ Games taking up her post. Other new appointments include a Head of STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Maths) and a Head of Global Awareness (all of the above being new positions for the school). In addition, as a town school, we are looking to invest in outdoor learning opportunities for all of our children. An extended Reception play area, a ‘Loose Parts Play’ playground and the introduction of Forest School for all year groups will provide a wealth of stimulating and creative learning opportunities for our Meadites in their natural surroundings. These developments, coupled with the continuing high academic standards, the renowned nurturing environment and the exceptional Performing Arts department make The Mead a market leader in terms of value for money. It really is worth taking a look behind the hedge on Frant Road.

Scott Carnochan, Headmaster

Holmewood House School, Tunbridge Wells Independent preparatory school for boys and girls aged 3-13 It has been an exciting summer of development at Holmewood. Our recently opened Cloisters building has been nominated for a number of awards and we aim for our wonderfully exciting pre-prep playground project to receive similar acclaim. Alongside these major developments, a programme of renovation and refurbishment has taken place across various areas of the school to ensure that our pupils are provided with the very best facilities which enhance their learning experience. Whilst this is of course important, I am most excited about the recruitment of new teachers who will work alongside our already outstanding colleagues. Yes, facilities provide opportunities but our children will not take the bricks and mortar with them when they leave us! What they will take are memories; memories formed by the richness of relationships between their teachers and role models and their young selves. This is what will truly shape them as young people and provide for them an outstanding education, both inside the classroom and out. Given the schools significant growth across the last 12 months we are excited to welcome 7 new teachers to the team. An exciting year lies ahead at Holmewood!


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In the spotlight Quickfire questions for Hilary Blake, Headmistress at Sacred Heart School, Wadhurst


Sum up your own schooldays Long ago and far away!

Which teacher most inspired you in your schooldays?

My French teacher (and, if I am allowed two, my English teacher). Both brought their subjects to life with a passion that was truly inspiring, influencing later choices in my education, career and life.

What makes you smile?

All sorts of things – the children for their honesty and capacity to surprise me, particularly in Nursery and Reception; a sunny day; the first day of term and… the holidays!

What frustrates you?

Time – a lack of it! There is never quite enough time to achieve everything I plan to do in a day!

What’s your favourite book and why?

There are several books which have made an impression at different times in my life. I would recommend to anyone A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens and The Song of Achilles by Madeleine Miller. Entirely different, they both explore love, relationships and self sacrifice!

Where would you like to see your school in five years? A year ago we opened a beautiful new building for the Foundation Stage pupils which is already making an important difference to the school, so in five years time I hope we will be ready to embark on (or celebrating the completion of!) the next phase of building development and being just as successful in our aims as we are today, or maybe even a little bit more so!

What do you hope that your pupils say about your school when they leave? ‘I am who I’m meant to be, this is me. Look out ‘cause here I come…..!’ (Better if you sing it.)


School report A round-up of what’s happening in the world of education

Making a splash New pool and competition success for Rose Hill pupils Pupils at Rose Hill School have been big winners recently, first with a new school pool and then in the John Lewis Innovation Challenge. After a 12-month building project, the school celebrated the official opening of their new indoor pool with a visit from the Rt Hon Greg Clark, MP for Tunbridge Wells. The sun shone and the pupils provided an excellent drum roll for the ribbon-cutting ceremony. Charles Arthur, Chairman of Governors, introduced Greg Clark and reminded the children that “if a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing well. If a thing is worth having, it is worth waiting for. Wise words from Oscar Wilde. “We have been hoping for an indoor pool at the school for thirty years since my children attended. I am so pleased it is finally here and that you are lucky enough to enjoy such a facility.” Weekly swimming lessons are part of the school curriculum and are available for all pupils from Kindergarten up to Year 8. The pool has replaced the school’s old outdoor pool, and has been designed 78

to ensure that even the youngest members of the school are able to stand when in it. Elsewhere, Year 6 pupils have scooped a hat-trick of prizes, winning second, third and runners up in the national John Lewis Innovation Challenge. The task was to reinvent a school blazer and give it a new lease of life. Pupils won second prize with a stationery folder, third prize with a dog coat and the runner up prize was for a remote-control pouch. The winners were invited to meet Paula Nikolds who is the first female Managing Director in John Lewis’s long history. They presented their winning products to her and explained how they had come up with the idea and the materials they had used. Pupils then learnt about John Lewis and how it manages sustainability and ethical employment. Emma Neville, Rose Hill Head, said, “This has been a fantastic project for Year 6 to get involved in. They have come up with some brilliant designs as well as learning about sustainability and recycling. Well done to everyone involved.” K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8


Rabbit, rabbit Unusual therapy for relieving the stress of exams Mental Health Awareness week, the annual event hosted by The Mental Health Foundation, focussed this year on stress as a cause of mental health problems. This issue clearly has a particular resonance for students undertaking exams, as the Foundation reports that 60 per cent of 18-24 year olds cite higher stress related to the pressure to succeed. At Battle Abbey School, Miss Montford, Head of Psychology, arranged an unusual antidote to the stressful exam time for students. For the second year running, Bexhill Furry Friends came to Battle Abbey. The group is a local not-forprofit organisation run by Sue, Margaret and Brenda, who have highly-trained, hypoallergenic bunnies, which provide petting therapy for the elderly, disabled, and other community groups. ‘Bunny base camp’ was set up on the top terrace, overlooking the battlefields, so that students of all ages, from years 7 to 13, could take in the view whilst holding a bunny, or even take them for a little walk around the grounds on a lead. The bunnies themselves, named Cookie, Purdey, Jethro and Dusty, were very tame, enjoying the company and attention from the students, whose relaxation was immediately apparent. Lucas, a year 10 pupil, said, “They were fluffy and nice to touch. And when I touched them I could feel the stress dissolving away.” Amalie, also in year 10, said, “I think the bunnies gave everyone the stress relief that they needed at the end of an exhausting exam week, and were a great way for everyone to relax.” One student even asked to take the bunny into their exam that afternoon! Miss Montford said: “This not only raised awareness of Mental Health Week, but promoted the school’s ethos that, as well as academic achievement, mental health should be a priority amongst our pupils.” The event has certainly inspired the school’s pupils to approach their future with hoptimism!

In the swim Battle Abbey Prep School Bexhill finish fifth nationally in ESSA Swim finals The swim squad at Battle Abbey Prep School Bexhill is celebrating after finishing in a fantastic fifth place at the recent ESSA National Swim Finals in Sheffield. The squad started their route to the finals in March when they won the County round of the ESSA Swim Championships in Horsham. The Regional event followed at the Guildford Spectrum Leisure Complex, where the Medley Relay team came seventh and the Freestyle Relay team third. Based on their strong showing at Guildford, the Freestyle Relay team secured their place at the ESSA National Swim Finals at the prestigious Ponds Forge International Sports Centre in Sheffield and arrived nervous but determined. The freestyle relay heat was exciting and the children swam hard to secure themselves a place in the ‘A’ Final. Amazing swims followed and saw Battle Abbey achieving a new Personal Best and finishing in fifth place overall. Miss Govan, Prep School Swim Coach, said, “On the day, the swimmers didn’t disappoint; all of them swam their hearts out. Just to make it to Sheffield was a massive achievement but to make it into the top five nationally is amazing. We were the only team not to be made up of competitive club swimmers, and many of the other schools were able to train almost double the amount compared to our swimmers. We couldn’t be prouder of our squad!” K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8

Pictured left to right: Beatrice Holdbrook, Martha Cocks, Anton Orange and Lily Webb. 79


Family fun for Alice School raises money for cancer charity Sevenoaks’ Walthamstow Hall Junior School recently hosted a Family Fun Fête for pupils, teachers, friends and family to raise money for children’s cancer charity Alice’s Arc, which aims to find a cure and less harsh treatments for childhood cancer rhabdomyosarcoma. It also supports the children and families affected by childhood cancer. Numerous activities and stalls were on offer at the fête, and the event closed with a magic show from local entertainer John Styles. Local support for the occasion was tremendous, with goods and services donated from The Chocolate Shop, Space NK, Bill’s Restaurant, The Chapel, Eat n Mess, Hartbeeps and local cake maker, Alli Dockree. Alice’s Arc was founded by the parents of a local girl who was diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma at the age of three. She is now six and continuing her battle with this cancer under the care of Great Ormond Street Hospital. Treatment has involved chemotherapy, proton radiation in the US, and surgery and further radiation in Amsterdam. The charity funds work at the Institute of Cancer Research, in particular providing money to cover researcher staffing costs and equipment. It also

Aiming high Exceptional A-level results for Mayfield School Mayfield School is celebrating another year of exceptional A-level results, among the best in recent years. Pupils have successfully secured places on highly-selective courses at leading universities to study a wide range of academic disciplines including Natural Sciences, Engineering, Medicine, Economics, Design, Linguistics and Psychology. Twenty per cent of all A-level entries were awarded A*, with almost 60 per cent graded A*/A and 80 per cent A*/B. Almost one-third of all girls were awarded three or more A*/A grades and this year 14 subjects achieved 100 per cent A*/B grades (up from 11 in 2017). Mathematics remained the most popular subject, with an impressive 30 per cent securing the top A* grade and 83 per cent 80

works with Great Ormond Street Hospital to fund roles such as Research Nurses. The charity also provides funds to patients to obtain drugs which ease the treatment process.

A*/A. The school’s equally strong reputation for the creative arts is reflected in almost 100 per cent of students achieving A*/A grades in Art, Ceramics and Textiles, and 60 per cent attaining the top A* grade. Particularly remarkable is the perfect score of 100 per cent achieved by Natasja from Crowborough, East Sussex, in A-level Ceramics. She is looking forward to her undergraduate studies at the prestigious Scandanavian Academy of International Fashion and Design in Copenhagen. There are a number of other outstanding individual performances. Former Head Girl, Chelsea, (A*A*AA) is excited to be taking up her place at Bristol to study Medicine. She said of her time at Mayfield, “The school encourages and supports us all to aim high and to work hard to reach our goals and I am very excited about what the future holds. I have loved my time at Mayfield and the school has prepared me well for the next exciting stage of my life.” Amanda from Tunbridge Wells (A*AAA), the worthy recipient of a prestigious Cambridge University Choral Scholarship, is looking forward to studying Linguistics at King’s College, Cambridge. She has been immersed in the musical life of Mayfield throughout her seven years, performing with Mayfield’s choir, Schola Cantorum, at special events in Westminster Abbey, Westminster Cathedral and St Paul’s Cathedral. Amanda also achieved the top Distinction award in her ARSM Performance Diploma, taking her exam on the same day as her History A level. Beatrice from Hong Kong achieved an outstanding four A* and one A grade and plans to pursue her study of Medicine in Hong Kong, whilst Martyna from Poland achieved four A* grades and has been awarded a full scholarship to NYU to study Engineering. Headmistress Antonia Beary said: “I continue to be delighted by our girls’ impressive achievements. Mayfield has a proud tradition of distinction in a wide range of disciplines and this year, once again, our girls have excelled across the board, confirming the strength in breadth and depth for which Mayfield is acclaimed.” K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8




2 4 5 Yummy mummy corner Whether you’re a yummy mummy, a loving partner or a doting grandparent, this is for you...

1. Is your little one getting nervous about their first day at school? The First Day at School personalised children’s book is a heart-warming tale that will teach them what to expect when the big day arrives. Accompanied by cute illustrations, all containing your little one’s name, it will familiarise them with formalities like assembly and lunch time, so by the time school comes around, they’ll be full of confidence and raring to go! From £14.30 2. T his personalised lunch box, with its eye-catching design, is just too cool for school and will make any child feel special, especially when they see it was created especially for them. £16.50 3. You’ve got the personalised lunch box, so how about giving your little one a surprise when they open the lid and find fun-shaped sandwiches. The Lunch Punch food cutter comes in a range of designs, from unicorns and dinosaurs to mermaids and cars, with two cutters per pack. Never serve a boring sandwich again! £10 4. T he soothing sway of the Leaf curv baby rocker will gently rock your baby with a smooth, side-to-side movement that lasts over two minutes. It 82

doesn’t need batteries, just a gentle push. The gliding motion is designed to relax, and the movement is more natural than rocking or bouncing. It can also be locked in a stationary position for feeding or playtime, and it easily pops out of the base for storage or weekends away. £180 5. I f you’re stuck for fun, educational ideas to keep the children entertained, check out the new monthly Willow + Wild subscription box for threeeight year olds. It’s packed with a variety of nature-related activities focusing on gardening, craft, cooking and creating. It’s the brainchild of Roz Harvey from Heathfield, who gave up her city job last year to develop and recently launch the business. Seeing a gap in the market for subscription boxes that inspire all-year-round learning with an emphasis on nature and the great outdoors, the personalised, seasonal boxes contain all the instructions and materials needed to sow and grow plants, flowers and vegetables, indoors and outdoors. As well as greenfingered activities, different table-top crafts are included every month, as well as an activity book and recipe cards for children and grown-ups to cook and bake treats for the whole family to enjoy. Monthly, threemonthly, six-monthly and 12-monthly subscriptions are available, and can be cancelled at any time. Boxes start from £7.25 per month. K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8

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Good night

Lack of sleep leads to obesity in children and adolescents Research at the University of Warwick has found that children and adolescents who regularly sleep less than others of the same age gain more weight when they grow older and are more likely to become overweight or obese. One of the co-authors of the report, Dr Michelle Miller, Reader of Biochemical Medicine, Health Sciences at Warwick Medical School, said: “Being overweight can lead to cardiovascular disease and type-2 diabetes, which is also on the increase in children. The findings of the study indicate that sleep may be an important, potentially-modifiable risk factor (or marker) of future obesity.” The authors reviewed the results of 42 population studies of infants, children and adolescents aged 0 to 18 years, which included a total of 75,499 participants. Their average sleep duration was assessed through a variety of methods, from questionnaires to wearable technology. Participants were followed up for three years and changes in BMI and incidences of overweight and/or obesity were recorded over time. At all ages, short sleepers gained more weight and overall were 58 per cent more likely to become overweight or obese. Dr Miller said: “The results showed a consistent relationship across all ages indicating that the increased risk is present in both younger and older children. The study also reinforces the concept that sleep deprivation is an important risk factor for obesity, detectable very early on in life.” The prevalence of obesity has increased worldwide and the World Health Organization has now declared it a global epidemic. The paper’s authors stress that whilst healthy eating and exercise are important, this study demonstrates that getting enough sleep is equally important.

Beam me up

New pre-school gymnastics course at Sevenoaks Leisure Centre A new pre-school gymnastics course has launched at Sevenoaks Leisure Centre, suitable for 2-5 year olds. Sessions take place on Thursdays, from 12:00 – 13:00 and follow the British Gymnastics syllabus. Cost for a seven-week course is £35 for members and £43.05 for non-members. To find out more and to book, contact Sevenoaks Leisure Centre on 01732 470700 or email

Get crafty…

… with an arts and crafts children’s party Stuck for birthday party ideas for your children? Why not have a Dreamshapes Crafts party – a treat for children of all ages (and no clearing up for you!) Dreamshapes arts and craft activity centre in Smeeth, near Ashford, has a range of fun, hands-on parties that include a quality, home-made buffet or lunch boxes, or you’re welcome to bring your own food or order pizza. You can have your party themed, and every guest gets a party bag on arrival to colour before the fun begins. Party options include the Messy Time Party (recommended age 2-5) with a canvas to paint with glitter paints and party hats to decorate before everyone will be let loose with sequins and glitter to decorate animal or fairy wands; Crafty Fingers (recommended age 3+) with a beautiful wooden trinket box or treasure chest to paint and decorate with gems or pirate treasure and, of course, a bit of glitter; Squish and Slime (recommended age 5+) to make a foam clay pebble pet and lots of slime; Clay Modelling (recommended age 6+) where everyone creates a creature or pot using kiln-firing clay and then paints it with underglaze. A small clay plaque will also be made as a keepsake for the birthday girl/boy; and Bags Of Fun (recommended age 8+) where everyone can enjoy choosing colours, embellishments, material etc before decorating, painting and stitching onto a canvas bag. Owner Sam Daniels and her team of dedicated staff are on hand to ensure a safe environment in which everyone can have fun and create their new masterpiece. Says Sam: “From the very outset, I wanted to create a place where children – and adults – could come and not only have a great time and make new friends but also be creative, and explore and develop their artistic side.” Over the past few years, the craft centre has developed into one of the most popular places to enjoy art and craft sessions.

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Recycling. We do. Because it matters. That’s the theme of Recycle Week from 24th-30th September, and this year the focus will be on plastics

Now in its 15th year, Recycle Week is a celebration of recycling, organised by WRAP (The Waste and Resources Action Programme). The aim of the week is to encourage the public to recycle more, by demonstrating the benefits of recycling items from all around the home. This year, people have been motivated to care about plastics in a way they never have before, and companies responsible for a significant proportion of supermarket plastic packaging have signed a deal to reduce plastic pollution by 2025. More than 40 companies, including Procter & Gamble, CocaCola and Asda, have signed up with the government, trade associations and campaigners to form the UK Plastics Pact. The Pact says it’s a once-in-a lifetime opportunity to rethink the way we use plastic and its impact on the environment. Their aims include 100 per cent of plastic packaging to be reusable, recyclable or compostable; 70 per cent of plastic packaging effectively recycled or composted; and problematic or unnecessary single-use packaging items eliminated, all by 2025. The increased motivation to curb plastic waste and boost recycling comes after the BBC Blue Planet II series highlighted the threat of ocean pollution and showed footage of wildlife eating plastic. The main way that plastic gets into the seas is via the world’s major rivers. Research suggests that 95 per cent of plastic is transported K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8

in this way. The majority of the plastic in the oceans comes from China but other countries including Indonesia, the Philippines and Vietnam are also major polluters. However, consumer behaviour in developed countries including the UK, Europe and the US is also a major factor in pushing plastic into the world’s waters. According to figures, US citizens produce around 120kg (264lbs) of plastic waste per person every year. The UK produces around 76kg (167lbs) of waste while in Sweden, it’s around 18kg (40lbs). Apart from packaging, two of the biggest plastic problems are straws and ear buds. These are among the most widely used items that turn up on beaches around the UK. Plastic cotton buds are often flushed down toilets and are small enough to pass through water filter systems and end up being eaten by fish and other marine creatures. The scale of UK plastic straw use is staggering with a figure of eight-and-a-half billion thrown away each year. The government is consulting on these steps with a possible ban to be introduced next year. Campaigners say that these proposals by government are not enough, and many other products need to be phased out too including plastic film – the UK uses more than a million tonnes a year, most of which can’t be recycled. 87


Say no to disposable nappies Parents can do their bit by choosing reusable nappies instead of disposables. If fact, more and more parents today choose to use cotton nappies as the best way to care for their baby. Call them reusable nappies, terry nappies, washable nappies, real nappies or cotton nappies; by any name these are the modern, environmentally-friendly alternative to disposables. Bambino Mio is the UK’s most widely-used reusable nappy brand. The company was born in 1997 by husband and wife Guy and Jo Schanschieff who began operating a business selling reusable nappies by mail order from home. Twenty years, three children, an MBE, over 60 awards and 50 countries later, Bambino Mio are the market leaders in the reusable nappy industry.

Did you know? 8 MILLION disposable nappies are thrown into landfill each year in the UK alone. 6,000 TONNES of disposable nappies are thrown away around the world every day. 500 YEARS is approximately how long it takes for one disposable nappy to decompose. 10 MILLION TONNES of plastic arrive in our oceans every year. By 2050 plastic will outweigh fish in our oceans.

5 ways to reduce plastic use

The Greenpeace organisation has come up with ways we can cut down on our personal plastic footprint 1. Carry a reusable bottle In the UK we use over 35 million plastic bottles every year! Carrying a reusable bottle is a great way to cut your plastic use and save money too. There’s even a website that tells you where you can refill your bottle with water for free (! 2. Say no to plastic straws Plastic straws are bad news for our oceans. Next time you order a drink, think about whether you need a straw – and if you don’t, just say no! You can also ask your local pub to stop adding straws to drinks as standard and offer paper straws to those who want one. 3. Say no to disposable cutlery We’ve all been there – caught out in a café or at a train station when we’ve bought a salad or a yogurt but the only cutlery on offer is plastic. Whilst it’s hard to plan for every opportunity, consider carrying a spoon or fork (or spork!) in your bag or keeping cutlery in your desk at work. 4. Get your milk delivered Although the early morning sound of a milk float is not as common as it used to be, there are still lots of places in the UK where you can get milk delivered in glass bottles – which are then collected and reused. You can find your nearest milkround at 5. Carry a shopping bag Since the plastic bag charge was introduced in England, there’s been a massive 85 per cent drop in their use. Many of us are used to carrying an extra bag with us – if you still find it hard to remember, try a foldaway one that you can carry in your handbag. 88

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Food for thought Reducing the amount of food that ends up in the bin also means you can say goodbye to unnecessary packaging waste. And a family of four could save as much as £70 each month. Zero-waste, plastic-free shopping is also gaining in popularity. • Permanent market stall, Waste Not is Brighton’s zero-waste shopping experience. Find it in Brighton Open Market, where local producers and suppliers can rent shelves in the shop – from honeys to homemade fudge, locally-roasted coffee to raw milks – all without plastic. • Charlotte’s Cupboard is the first plastic-free shop – on wheels. Acting like an oldfashioned mobile store, the van offers dry goods, chocolate, tea, coffee, household essentials and lots more – most of them are organic with plans for that to be 100 per cent very soon. Order zero-waste deliveries to your door (in Sussex) or find the van at market days in Sussex including Haywards Heath, Brighton and Lewes. • Olio is a free sharing app, allowing you to give away or pick up surplus food or stuff. It connects neighbours with each other and with local businesses so surplus food can be shared, not thrown away. This could be food nearing its sell-by date in local stores, spare home-grown vegetables, bread from your baker, or the groceries in your fridge when you go away. It can also be used for non-food household items too.

Be a part of the Community Fridge Network Community Fridges are communal places where surplus food is shared between people in a community, by local businesses and individuals. The average UK family wastes £470 a year by throwing away food and drink which could have been eaten, and £3 billion is wasted by food sectors. Despite growing awareness of food waste, there are few easy ways for people or businesses to get food near its ‘sell by’ date to others. So far Community Fridges have helped thousands connect to their communities, access nutritious food, save money and reduce waste. Find out more – and how to set up your own Community Fridge, at

Wonky Veg Tonnes of vegetables which don’t match up to strict supermarket size and shape parameters are thrown away each year. Some supermarkets, such as Morrisons and Asda, sell wonky veg that was initially rejected for not looking good enough. Riverford Organics ( deliver boxes of wonky veg to various parts of the UK.


Buy smart... ...and help save the planet with these clever, eco-friendly products





1. With the appearance of stoneware but made from durable, 100 per cent biodegradable bamboo fibre and corn powder with natural colourants, this beautifully-decorated, environmentallyfriendly plate, bowl and cup set will delight any young child at mealtimes and is perfect for indoor or outdoor use. £17.75 2. With the plastic revolution gaining momentum, The Pearly White Club created the UK’s first bamboo toothbrush subscription service to address the 300 plastic toothbrushes we will each throw away on average over our lifetime. With an estimated 3.6 billion plastic toothbrushes used worldwide each year, approximately 80 per cent of that plastic ends up in the sea, and then takes over 1,000 years to decompose. The Pearly White Club will deliver a new toothbrush with a compostable bamboo handle in a stylish and colourful design – in eco-friendly packaging – every six weeks. It comes in sizes suitable for children, and with soft to medium bristles. Each toothbrush is 100 per cent vegan-friendly, made of FSC-regulated bamboo which doesn’t damage panda habitats, and with bristles made from BPA-free Nylon 6. What’s more, a toothbrush is donated to the homeless with each subscription. Subscriptions for one person are £30 per year, or £3 per month. The subscriptions are discounted with each additional person added.


3. Of the 300 million tons of plastic that’s produced globally each year, it’s estimated that less than 10 per cent is recycled, with an astonishing 8 million tons of disposed plastic waste entering our oceans annually. Batoko is part of a positive process that is attempting to clean up our oceans and help reduce the negative impact of plastic on the environment. They want to show that slowing down the production of new plastic materials in favour of existing sustainable resources is the way forward. This is why their swimwear is 100 per cent recycled from plastic bottles and consumer waste such as carpets and other textiles. Recycling helps reduce energy usage, consumption of new raw materials and air and water pollution (from land fills and marine waste). Additionally, the swimsuits are printed digitally, which is an ecological printing method designed to reduce water and waste. The inks are free of harmful chemicals, and Batoko prints the designs onto the fabric after it’s been cut to minimise production waste. And the fabric is vegan, too! £40 4. Make-up wipes could be banned in the UK as part of the government’s proposed plan to help save the environment, as they’re made from polyester, which is very slow to degrade. Instead of wipes, use a face cloth to remove your make-up, which can be washed and re-used time and time again. Saaf Organic Pure Face Cleanser comes with an exfoliating cloth to rejuvenate the skin. £24.99

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5. Brits are responsible for up to seven million single-use coffee cups going to landfill every single day, with a huge number of us still believing that single-use cups are recyclable. The reality is that the plastic or wax linings used to waterproof the cups make the separation process very complicated. Take your own Ecoffee Cup with you instead. It has a resealable, dripproof lid for easy storage in bags, making it the ideal choice for travelling. It’s manufactured using bamboo fibre (the world’s fastest-growing, most sustainable crop) and corn starch, which means it’s BPA- and phthalatefree. The cup is sturdy but light, fully dishwasher safe and because bamboo is naturally sterile, it doesn’t flavour-taint drinks, unlike some other reusables. From £7.95 6. K inn believes in a clean beauty regime for you and your home. They make certified organic skincare and eco-friendly home-cleaning products that are as non-toxic as possible. Blending core essential oils such as ylang ylang, lavender and tangerine, the Kinn range consists of a selection of everyday home cleaning items, and bath and body products. Exclusive to Waitrose or online at


7. In collaboration with Nespresso, Caran d’Ache has produced a new, limited edition of their classic 849 ballpoint pen made using the aluminium from recycled Nespresso coffee capsules. An exclusive alloy was created using the aluminium from the ‘Darkhan’ capsule, which was chosen to lend its dark slate blue colour to the pen’s slender satin-finished aluminium barrel. £39.99 8. Grass People Tree is a new tea brand that forages for ancient and sustainable wild mountain teas. They do this with support of the tribes in the Guizhou Provence in south-west China, helping to support the 2,000-year tea traditions. The tea is made using natural processes without machinery, pesticides or chemicals. It never bitters, so can be re-brewed throughout the day just by topping up the water. From £18 for 20g



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Business notes A round-up of local business news

Looking to the future

Top producer joins the Assembly Hall Theatre Tunbridge Wells’ Assembly Hall Theatre has appointed Carole Winter as its first-ever in-house producer. She joined the team in August, bringing over 30 years experience of working with some of the biggest names in theatre and entertainment, from the Royal National Theatre to Comic Relief. As producer, Carole will play an important role in realising the company’s new vision and the future direction of the theatre. Working with local communities as well as professional companies, she will develop a new creative programme as part of the venue’s transition to a new state-of-the-art, 1,200-seat theatre. The appointment marks an exciting stepchange in the history of the theatre as it becomes a producing as well as a receiving venue and highlights the ambition to develop a nationally-recognised cultural programme in Tunbridge Wells. Says Carole, “I have been lucky to work for some of the best organisations in the country, gathering a rich and varied career, and working alongside hugely inspirational people including Harold Pinter, Peter Hall, Richard Curtis and Sonia Friedman. I am delighted to be joining the talented team at the Assembly Hall Theatre at this exciting time and look forward to contributing to the future culture, theatre and arts provision in the borough.” Carole’s career includes establishing and running the education departments for both the National Theatre and the English Shakespeare Company, as well as producing and co-producing around 30 commercial shows in the West End and on Broadway including Olivier Award-winning Blackbird. John-Jackson Almond, Assembly Hall Theatre Director, says, “Carole’s wealth of theatre knowledge, production experience and access to an extended theatre network will enable us to forge a very different role as a producing as well as receiving venue, bringing a completely new cultural life to the borough. Carole joins us at a really exciting time as we build new audiences and make new partnerships regionally and nationally. I can’t wait to start working with her and developing the most exciting and accessible programme we possibly can.”

Image credit: Emily Brown

Best foot forward

Decorate footwear and win prizes

Images by Emma Stokes Photography: • Sue Evans of SVAF, Mayor of Sevenoaks, Cllr Roderick Hogarth, Rosalind Barker of SVAF and the shopkeepers of The Danish Collection • Selection of slippers already decorated for the exhibition


Sevenoaks Mayor, Cllr Roderick Hogarth, is launching the second wave of the Sevenoaks Visual Art Forum’s (SVAF) campaign, Footfall. They’re on a mission to celebrate the artist in everyone by going shoe crazy, and the whole town is encouraged to get involved. From babies to pensioners, SVAF are encouraging everyone to realise the benefits of taking part in art. The group are giving away free slippers to everyone and asking them to decorate them in any way they want. The joy of this project is its simplicity: your shoe could reflect who you are, your interests or what you do. You can pick up free slippers from the Sevenoaks Kaleidoscope Gallery then drop or post them back to the Gallery with your name and number for a chance to win prizes. All the decorated shoes will be presented in a magnificent show in the Sevenoaks Kaleidoscope Gallery from 3rd December to 5 January, and prizes will be awarded by public vote. Cllr Hogarth is looking forward to the project and how it can have a positive impact on the local community. “Footfall is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate our own creative community,” he said, “and I’m sure everyone will send in some fabulous slippers!” The Sevenoaks Kaleidoscope Gallery is run as an artist-led space by SVAF who, in partnership with Kent County Council, bring art to the community of Sevenoaks and West Kent. Rosalind Barker of SVAF says, “The benefits of taking part in creative pastimes can help all people of the community. In Footfall, we are offering a free participatory fun project open to everyone – no experience, money or ability is needed.” Sue Evans of SVAF says, “Through Footfall we really hope more of the community will discover the great creativity happening in the middle of the town. At the Sevenoaks Kaleidoscope Gallery we offer affordable or free workshops and a wide variety of free art exhibitions, talks and events.” Find out more at, and sign up for SVAF’s monthly newsletter. K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8


The future of unreasonable behaviour


Sarah Haywood of ThomasHaywood Solicitors looks at the implications of the recent divorce case of Mr and Mrs Owens

In order to get a divorce, a court has to be satisfied that a marriage has broken down irretrievably and this is evidenced by one of five facts. The fact of desertion is very rarely used nowadays. There are the separation grounds of two years’ separation where both parties consent and that of five years’ separation which can be used where one party does not consent. The other two facts are what the popular press like to refer to as “quickie divorces” and they are adultery and unreasonable behaviour. The perception of unreasonable behaviour is still that the behaviour of one party has to be quite dreadful, such as violence or mental cruelty, in order to succeed. However, in reality, many unreasonable behaviour petitions cite behaviour such as withdrawal of affection or refusal to socialise together. For many years solicitors have been encouraged to draft particulars of unreasonable behaviour in as anodyne and non-aggressive a way as possible to avoid unnecessarily increasing the temperature. That approach may change following the recent case of Mr and Mrs Owens which was before the Supreme Court recently. Mrs Owens petitioned for divorce citing Mr Owens’ unreasonable behaviour and he defended the petition. Most solicitors advise against defending divorce proceedings for the simple reason that if one party feels the marriage has no future, they will not be dissuaded from that feeling by the other party arguing as to the reasons for the marriage breakdown. The usual approach here is for the Respondent, the person against whom the unreasonable behaviour allegations are raised, to return the form to the court saying they do not accept the particulars in the petition are true and will defend them if they

are raised in any subsequent proceedings (usually financial proceedings), but they do accept that the marriage has broken down irretrievably and will not contest the divorce. Mrs Owens’ barrister said that the court has to consider whether the actual impact of her husband’s behaviour is something that she can reasonably be expected to live with and it is not for the court to decide whether his behaviour is in any way unreasonable. Mr Owens’ barrister said that this would be importing a subjective element into the objective tests set by parliament and taking this to its logical conclusion would mean “divorce on demand”. The Judge who originally heard the defended divorce found that Mrs Owens had exaggerated the context and seriousness of the allegations against her husband significantly. Resolution, the national organisation of family lawyers committed to non-confrontational divorce, was granted permission to intervene in this case. They argued that the current law can be applied in a way that allows the divorce she is seeking and that irrespective of the Supreme court decision, the law should be changed to avoid such cases coming before the courts in future. Resolution has campaigned for no-fault divorce for decades and their call for reform has recently been echoed by the Marriage Foundation, the President of Family Division and the new President of the Supreme Court. Despite this, the Supreme Court have decided that Mrs Owens does not have grounds for divorce based on unreasonable behaviour and she must remain married.


Helping hand

A round-up of local charity news Fundraising on course

Sencio Golf Day raises £900 for West Kent Mind As part of its annual support of a local charity, a golf day at Lullingstone Park Golf Course, organised by Sencio Community Leisure (SCL), has raised £900 for West Kent Mind. The money will be added to other fundraising events organised by SCL and presented to the charity at the end of the year. The golf day attracted eight teams that completed Lullingstone’s challenging 18-hole course on what was one of the hottest days of the year. The teams taking part represented partners of, and suppliers to, the not-for-profit community leisure operator which, in addition to the golf course, operates Edenbridge Leisure Centre, Sevenoaks Leisure Centre and White Oak Leisure Centre in Swanley. Jane Parish, chief executive of SCL, says: “As a leisure operator, we’re all-too aware of the connection between physical activity and our mental wellbeing and we are therefore delighted to be supporting West Kent Mind as our charity this year. “As a country, we are thankfully becoming more aware of the cost of anxiety, depression and mental illness and it’s important for all of us to increase that understanding and to support both those suffering and those providing vital services to people in need. I am delighted our annual Lullingstone Park Golf Course golf day has been another success and I congratulate and thank all those taking part.” West Kent Mind, which exists to make sure anyone with a mental health problem has somewhere to turn for advice and support, offers a range of services as well as training and a programme of educational and awareness-raising events.

Tanya Wright, community fundraiser, said: “Congratulations to the winners of Sencio’s golf day and to everyone who took part. What a successful event – a beautiful course, sunny weather and an amazing amount raised for West Kent Mind. We really appreciate Sencio’s ongoing support and fundraising activities, which will help ensure we can continue to help people with mental health problems and to promote better mental health.”

For further details on the work of West Kent Mind, visit For further information on Lullingstone Park Golf Course, visit


Golfers support ellenor at charity day More than £4,500 has been raised at the third Studio44 Charity Golf Day in aid of ellenor, Kent’s only charity offering hospice-athome care to children. Digital agency Studio44 hosted the charity event at the Nevill Golf Club, Tunbridge Wells with more than 75 golfers playing in the sunshine. “It was a great day, with lots of enthusiasm on the course, which was then followed by an entertaining evening,” said Studio44 Director Doug Rubashow. “This is the third year we have run the golf day in support of ellenor, and the more work we do with them, the more we really understand the difference they make to so many people. We are extremely grateful to all the local businesses who supported us and helped us raise more than £4,500.” Fundraising manager for ellenor, Kate Barnes, commented: “Studio44’s support has been fantastic, and we are really grateful for their fundraising and exposure. They’ve been very active on social media by raising awareness of the event and of ellenor. It’s great to see local businesses coming together to help make a real difference to the children and families that we support.” 96

Image by Matt Harquail

“It was a fantastic event and everyone was very supportive of ellenor. We were proud to be hosts to such a wonderful cause,” said the chairman of the Nevill Golf Club, David Blundell. Donations can be made to ellenor by visiting their website: K U D O S S E P T E M B E R /O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8


Drop in and find comfort The Pickering Cancer Drop-in Centre in Tunbridge Wells offers support for anyone touched by cancer


Most people are affected by cancer during their lives and many find it a traumatic and lonely experience. In 2003, a group of cancer patients and their friends had a vision to provide a haven for anybody affected by cancer – a place of comfort and support. Just a year later, after a lot of hard work and community support, the Pickering Cancer Drop-in Centre opened at the Homeopathic Hospital in Tunbridge Wells. Initially it opened only on Fridays, but it was soon recognised that the need was there and that this was only the beginning. The Centre, now based in Monson Road and helping around 2,500 to 3,000 people a year, relies entirely on grants, donations and bequests, from businesses, organisations and individuals, and their own fundraising activities. “The Centre is a totally self-funding registered charity,” said co-founder Polly Taylor. “We aim to help and support anyone affected by cancer from diagnosis onwards, be they patients, their partners, children, friends or carers. “We offer a safe, relaxing, friendly environment where mutual support and information can be found, without the pressure of appointments or time restraints. We also offer a wide range of complementary therapies, including reflexology, reiki, healing, massage, acupuncture, nutritional advice, mindfulness, beauty treatments, Qi Gong and counselling – all free of charge.” The Centre is run entirely by volunteers who have been touched by cancer in one way or another. There are no geographical limits and, as well as local hospitals and GPs, they also receive referrals from top London hospitals and Macmillan Cancer Support. “We were very honoured to have been chosen by the Queen for the Queen’s Award for Voluntary Service and equally honoured to have had a private visit from the Countess of Wessex,” said Polly. Visitors to the Centre will find a welcoming home-from-home setting and volunteers prepared to spend however long it takes to reassure and help. “We don’t watch the clock,” said Polly. “Our visitors are given all the time they need as we recognise that giving emotional support can’t be rushed. Everything we do is tailored to their needs. We are a true drop-in centre and the only time appointments


are necessary are for treatments – we are always accessible and available. “We recruit caring people who connect with others and can show empathy and compassion. Our volunteers carry out their duties for love, not money. Any funds raised are spent on the fabric of the charity, not on salaries. “We need volunteers from all kinds of backgrounds and skills, including qualified and experienced complementary therapists, fundraisers and people to help with publicity, clerical tasks and making the tea!” said Polly. “Our sole aim is to ensure that when someone rings the doorbell, there is a volunteer there to help them.”

Should you be interested in being a part of the Centre’s closely-knit team, call 01892 511880.

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Kudos issue 30  

Sept/Oct 2018

Kudos issue 30  

Sept/Oct 2018