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LincolnshirePride M A G A Z I N E



F E B R UA RY I S S U E 1 0 3





LincolnshirePride - The High Society Magazine - February 2011 - Issue 103

“Passion” FOR FASHION, FOR FOOD, FOR LIFE This month: High Society Events, Countryside, Food


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48 Homes and Gardens.


24 Lincolnshire People — Farewell Bishop John!

66 Lincolnshire Countryside — Adding Livestock to Smallholdings February’s Lincolnshire Pride — in which we celebrate successful businesswomen in our annual Women in Business feature. Also in this edition, we look at some of Lincolnshire’s most familiar landmarks from a unique perspective, recognising the efforts of the artists, craftspeople and custodians who look after them so future generations can enjoy them too. This month is Valentine’s Day, so in addition to recommending fashions for smart meals and Valentine’s Balls, we provide suggestions for romantic dining at restaurants specialising in providing intimate dining for the occasion. Elsewhere, we put the latest executive, 4x4 & family car models head-to-head in advance of the new motoring registration, and enjoy Lincolnshire’s best food with a look at one of the county’s most successful dining rooms, cupcake artists celebrating a retro feel-good teatime treat, and Valentine’s Day desserts to round off your meal in indulgent style. Our best wishes for a wonderful month! ROB DAVIS EXECUTIVE EDITOR

112 Lincolnshire Motors -— New Registration Special.

04 12 24 29 34 42 45 48 60


86 Fashion — Valentine’s Day from Lincolnshire Retailers.

29 Lincolnshire Food & Drink — Luxury Valentine’s Day Dining.

118 High Society - Ten Pages of the Best Lincolnshire Events.

66 68 78 72 86 96 103 112 118


WRITE TO US AT Lincolnshire Pride Magazine, Whitespace Publishers Ltd, Elm Grange Studios, East Heckington, Boston, Lincolnshire PE20 3QF. Tel: 01529 469977 Fax: 01529 469978 Web: By placing an advertisement in Lincolnshire Pride you are agreeing to our full terms and conditions, which can be found on our website.


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AroundLincolnshire News








Shopping Your Guide to What’s Happening across Lincolnshire this Month

Barton & Barrow

Grantham n Belvoir Hunt Enjoys A Ride Out The Belvoir Hunt enjoyed its annual ride out in Grantham’s town centre last month. The event was postponed from its usual Boxing Day time slot.

News n Green-Fingered Sam’s New Career in Barton Teenager Sam Sanderson of Barton-upon-Humber is looking forward to a new career in the area thanks to an initiative known as the Future Jobs Fund.

Fans of the sport were delighted to see the group reappear after the event was cancelled last year due to an outbreak of Kennel Cough.

Sam will work 25 hours a week alongside mentor John Cavill after initially struggling to find work following a move to the area. The pair will design and create landscaping for clients across Lincolnshire.

Boston News Image by Kerry Ball — shots can be purchased at www.digitalcountry. or by calling 01636 681298.

n A Century of Life in Boston by Author Margaret At 101 years old, Boston author Margaret Comer has distilled her wit and wisdom into a new book. Margaret has written Plain Jane, a semi-autobiographical novel covering everything from her Edwardian youth to her time at Boston High School, work on the Boston Standard and involvement in the town’s Blackfriar’s Arts Centre. Her book is available for £10, with proceeds donated to charity, by emailing karencole n £2.7m Investment in Boston Town Centre £2.7m will be invested in Boston in 2011, including £450,000 to restore the Market Place, with some funds coming from the defunct Boston Area Regeneration Company (BARC) group.

n Blackfriars Arts Centre, Tel: 01205 363108 16th - 19th February: Playgoers’s Present ‘Allo ‘Allo The Boston Playgoers group brings to the stage a presentation of one of the greatest comedy series of all time. ‘Allo ‘Allo promises to be the funniest show ever presented at Blackfriars. 24th February: The Hamsters The UK's premier blues-rock attraction. Although primarily performing their own brand of material, they are widely regarded as the leading interpreters of the music of Jimi Hendrix. n Shopping & Markets Boston Market on Wednesdays and Saturdays, Farmers’ Markets third Wed in month.

Bourne & Deepings News n Deepings Gets Ready for Gang Show This month sees the 2011 Deepings Show, held by young people and adults from the Bourne and Deepings area. Four evening performances from 23rd to 26th Feb and a Saturday matinee at the Deepings School in the village’s Park Road will include sketches and songs from all eras including swing and motown hits. For more information call 01778 343443. n Shopping and Markets Bourne Market Thurs and Sat.

n Grizzly Investigations... Take Part In CSI Grantham! Investigate a grizzly crime with a special one day course on forensic science and criminal scene investigation at the EM Centre for Learning on Grantham’s Londonthorpe Road on 17th February. Adults and children over 14 are invited to dress in a white suit, gloves and a mask to become CSI investigators for a day. Activities include latent fingerprinting, footwear analysis, UV detection and hair, blood & fibre retrieval. One day course to include refreshments, £35 per person, call 01476 512794 for booking details. n Guildhall Arts Centre, Tel: 01476 406158 1st February: Bodega Bodega formed in 2005 and won the coveted title of BBC Radio 2 ‘Young Folk Musicians of the Year’ under a year later. Since then, this intensely talented group has been hailed across the world as one of the UK’s most dynamic young folk music groups. n Shopping & Markets Market every Saturday, farmers’ markets second Saturday in the month.

Get In Touch: Email your news releases, forthcoming events and what’s on events to or call 01529 46 99 77.


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Follow Our Useful Colour Coded Guide: n News n What’s On n History n Gardening n Sports n Shopping/Markets

Grimsby & Cleethorpes News n Dock Tower’s 10 Year £200,000 Charity Contribution Grimsby’s Dock Tower has earned local charities more than £200,000 in the ten years. Over 4,000 people have been allowed to perform charity abseils down the 300ft tower hydraulic pump, constructed in 1852 and saved from demolition three decades ago.

n Grimsby Central Hall Tel: 01472 346251 26th February: Black Dyke Band Appearing in Grimsby for one night only, is the most successful brass band in history. With over 150 years of rich musical heritage, Black Dyke is possibly the world’s most famous brass band. n Shopping and Farmers’ Markets Freshney Place Market Tues, Thurs, Fri and Sat.

Horncastle & Woodhall News n Jubilee Park ‘given back’ to Woodhall Residents Woodhall Spa’s Jubilee Park has been given back to the town following a £1 freehold transfer from ELDC to the Parish Council. The move means work can begin on improving the site, with the first job — according to the village’s David Clarke — the replacement of the pool tank. The site includes an outdoor pool, cricket field and tennis courts, bowls lawn and play area. The move follows fears it would be shut down following ELDC’s impending budget cut amounting to £3.4m.

n Petwood Hotel Tel: 01526 352411 26th February: 1940s Dance An evening filled with history, nostalgia and swing. Period costume optional. Includes buffet supper and dancing to Big Band music; £19.50pp.

The Black Dyke Band — appearing in Grimsby this month.


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AroundLincolnshire News








Shopping Your Guide to What’s Happening across Lincolnshire this Month

Louth & Alford Lincoln Philharmonia at Drill Hall — image courtesy of Chris Owen.

n Louth Playgoers Tel: 01507 600 350 1st- 5th February: Fiddler on the Roof Presented by King Edward VI School, this award winning musical set in Russia in 1905 is brought to life with award-winning music such as Tradition, Matchmaker and Sunrise, Sunset as Tevye tries to keep his family’s traditions in place under the country’s harsh Tsarist rule.

The money has been raised by staff from Chattertons Solicitors through various fund raising activities during the year from across the firm. One of the main fund raising events held was a charity fun day which raised £750. Staff from across the firm helped to raise money by donating raffle prizes and taking part in various activities and games on the day as well as enjoying a barbecue.

n Shopping & Markets Louth market on Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, farmers’ market second Friday and last Wednesday in month. Alford market Tuesday and Friday.

More recent fund raising events have involved staff baking cakes at their offices as well as raising monies through various raffles.

Lincoln News n No ‘Ducking Out’ of Foss Dyke Fundraiser Charity event organiser Ken Meanwell of Saxilby Football Club refused to ‘duck out’ of organising his group’s annual rubber duck race recently. The annual event normally attracts a big turnout and raises £1,000 for local charities. This year, though, the event was threatened when the river froze over. Fortunately, the event with its quackers organisers was saved when an artificial pond was created instead. n Holy Hotel to be Created at St Michael’s St Michael’s on the Mount will be converted into a hotel in 2011. The 16th century building will provide 13 rooms and was sold at auction for £280,000 in 2007. It was declared redundant by the Diocese in 1998.


n Lincoln Law Firm Helping Heroes One of Lincolnshire’s largest legal firms last month donated over £1,200 to the charity Help for Heroes.

n Theme Café Brings Back Swinging Sixties’s Mod Culture A new café on Lincoln’s Strait aims to bring the 1960s back to life. Fans of the swinging sixties Jason Pick and girlfriend Adele Mitchell’s new café uses mod decoration, retro fashions, traditional food and lots of pop art to bring the most unforgettable decade back to life in the middle of Lincoln. “We’re huge fans of the 1960s.” says Jason. “We thought there was a gap in the market for a proper themed place like this in Lincoln.” Already members of the Lambretta Club are planning to use the venue as a meeting point, and have offered to donate Quadrophenia style scooter-themed decor for one wall. The venue is open seven days from 8am to 5pm.

n 18th - 20th February: Lincolnshire At War — Weekend School Special history weekend at Bishop Grosseteste University College with series of lectures; Lincolnshire in the Civil War, PoW Camps in Lincolnshire, RAF in Lincolnshire and more. History from Roman times to the 20th century, organised by the Society for Lincolnshire History and Archaology. SLHA is an historic countywide society which runs courses and meetings, arranges visits, surveys and fieldwork, and publishes and sells books. It acts as a focus for local groups across Lincolnshire and is always interested in views and news about the county's past. See or call 01522 521337 for details.

Senior Partner, Peter Lawson, of Chattertons Solicitors said; “Each year the staff choose a charity for the firm. This year we are delighted to have raised the money for Help for Heroes which is such a worthwhile cause. I would like to thank all our staff who have contributed in so many different ways.” Peter presented the cheque to Katie Wilson, County Co-ordinator for Lincolnshire, at the firm’s Newark Office. Katie said; “I was absolutely delighted to attend a cheque presentation from a local firm who have so generously supported our wounded troops, £1,271.20 is a magnificent total, thank you so much to everyone who helped to make it possible.” Chattertons has been established for over 200 years and has offices in Lincoln, Newark, Boston, Grantham, Stamford, Sleaford and Woodhall Spa, also raises money during the year to support local charities in the community.

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Follow Our Useful Colour Coded Guide: n News n What’s On n History n Gardening n Sports n Shopping/Markets

n Lincoln Theatre Royal Tel: 01522 519999 9th - 12th February: Moscow State Circus The Moscow State Circus returns to the UK with Doctorov’s unbelievable Human Statues, The Bortnikova body twisting contortionists, and The Russian bar acrobatics of the four strong Vassiliev Troupe. Award winning clowns Valik & Valerik have perfected the art of slapstick and Buster Keaton style capers. The unbelievable crossbow act of The Popazov features a wife shooting an apple from her husband’s head with seven crossbows firing simultaneously! 13th February: The Sourcerer Opera De La Luna presents this story, set in a quaint Victorian setting to sleepy rural Britain in the 1970s. John Wellington Wells, the celebrated dealer in ‘magic and spells,’ spreads chaos and havoc in an unsuspecting country village, when he places a powerful aphrodisiac in the village hall teapot. The resulting revelations are indeed ‘a marvellous illusion, a terrible surprise!’

n Drill Hall, Lincoln Tel: 01522 873891 5th February: Lincolnshire Philharmonia The Lincolnshire Philharmonia Orchestra celebrates its 10th Anniversary with a sparkling array of American Music, conducted by Richard Murray. 9th February: The UK Barista Championships Have you got what it takes to become the next UK Barista Champion and represent the UK in the World Championships? Lincoln’s Stokes Coffee will be hosting the East of England regional heats at Drill Hall throughout the day! 23rd February: Sinfonia ViVa Leader Benedict Holland and Sinfonia ViVA are delighted to return to Lincoln Drill Hall bringing an intriguing programme of classical works for an audience whose appreciative feedback from previous concerts has been second to none! For gorgeous classics and fabulous musicians… It has to be Sinfonia ViVA in Lincoln, featuring Haydn, Nielsen and Mozart. n Shopping & Markets Mon-Sat in City Centre, farmers’ markets first Friday in month in City Square.


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AroundLincolnshire News








Shopping Your Guide to What’s Happening across Lincolnshire this Month

Spalding & Long Sutton



News n 80 Years in the Life of Scunthorpe Toy Shop Business at Scunthorpe’s Sherman’s Models is still taking off after nearly 80 years of trading. The toy shop, which sells radio controlled model aeroplanes, models and all sorts of other toys, has survived the coming of plastics and electronics, with current owner Stephen Simpson enjoying bumper seasonal trade recently. n 10th February: Scunthorpe Young Persons’ Film Festival Based at the Plowright Theatre, this evening will celebrate the work of young filmmakers from North Lincolnshire, screening work made by the young people and announcing winners of the competition’s various categories. n Shopping & Markets Market on Friday and Saturday.

n Cindy’s Hosts February Fashions Open Day Ladies fashion retailer Cindy’s of Sutton Bridge is launching a new collection of mother of the bride and occasionwear at a special open day to be held on 27th February at the company’s Bridge Road boutique. The retailer invites Lincolnshire ladies to enjoy a glass of bubbly and see the new season’s collections modelled throughout the day from 10am to 4pm. n Shopping & Markets Spalding market in Tuesday and Saturday, farmers’ market on first Saturday in each month.

Stamford Moscow State Circus — appearing at Lincoln Theatre Royal from 9th-12th February.


Sleaford News n New Guide to Sleaford Highlights Tourism Treats ‘The Heart of Lincolnshire’ is promoted in a new visitors guide and website of the same name designed to support North Kesteven’s £87m annual tourist trade. The new guide is available from TICs and local attractions now, and has been produced in association with the Waddington International Air Show. n Shopping & Farmers’ Markets Farmers’ market held on first Saturday of each month.

Skegness & Spilsby News n Official Re-Opening of Theatre for Spilsby Plans are being made for a grand re-opening of Spilsby Theatre in April following the arrival of new managers Jane Scott and Bruce Knight. The theatre has been restored following last year’s closure and will re-open officially in April with a full programme. Jane is inviting local music and dance groups to audition for the event — call 01790 752936 for more information.

n Embassy Centre Tel: 01775 764777 5th February: Viennese Strauss Gala Now in it's 8th spectacular year, this picturesque presentation recreates the nostalgia and romance of the Viennese Festive season, with highlights from some of the great operettas of Strauss, Kalman and Lehar. This splendid show is performed by soloists from the major British Opera companies including Opera North, English National Opera and D'oyly Carte. n Shopping & Farmers’ Markets Skegness market Mon to Sat.

n Top Class Nursery School Opens in Easton Easton-on-the-Hill has a new nursery school. Officially opened by Director of Burghley House Miranda Rock, the school is the result of a year of fundraising by the area’s mums. Work began on the eco-friendly pre-school in May 2010 and now its 19 children can enjoy a book corner, sandpit, verandah and computer room. Ranby House School, Retford — Correction, Jan 2011 Our sincere apologies for last month’s incorrect contact details for the above school in our Education feature. Ranby House School’s telephone number is 01777 714387, their website is

Get In Touch: Email your news releases, forthcoming events and what’s on events to or call 01529 46 99 77.


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Conservation and Restoration

We ’ r e Ta k i n g C a r e o f


Landmarks This month we look at Lincolnshire’s landmarks from a different perspective. For every church, landmark or industrial building there’s a small army of people taking care of each. Meet the artists, craftspeople and managers behind our most familiar landmarks... Words: Rachel Hollis. Main Image: Steve H.


Alan Scott,

Phil Leonard,

Tom Küpper, Peter Hill,

Mary Rogers,

Estate Manager




Resident Artist

“I make sure the chimneys are swept at Burghley House!”

“We make sure Boston Stump remains standing!”

“I repair Lincoln Cathedral’s stained glass windows!”

“I make sure people can cross the Humber safely...!”

“I’m working to show the beauty of a forgotten landmark!”

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Conservation and Restoration


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Lincoln’s Touch Of


This is Tom Küpper, Lincoln Cathedral’s Works Department Stained Glass Artist... everything became clear as we discovered the world of restoration, conservation, and preservation of stained glass windows at Lincoln Cathedral... ith the second largest Cathedral works department in England, Lincoln Cathedral boasts a dedicated and loyal team of 27 stonemasons, carvers, stained glass window conservators, stone conservators, lead workers, engineers, carpenters, and joiners — all of whom are responsible for the day to day upkeep and maintenance of the county’s most spectacular landmark.


department. He spoke of the day to day tasks involved in his job, and how the processes and techniques of glazing have changed very little since medieval times.

“Broken glass is fixed with copper foiling, and quarry glazing is used to keep the glass from weathering. Cementing waterproofs the windows.”

The team of three window conservators work on various projects throughout the year which are assigned as and when any problems on the site are identified. They have a self-set agenda, and work very closely with the other trades within the department.

“But the most prevalent concern is definitely to ensure the frame is in good condition.”

A common task which the team spoke of was The Cathedral — which dates back to 1072 the cementing (or waterproofing) of the — houses a staggering 720 plain and Cathedral’s glass windows. Each historic stained glass windows, all window has to be completely of which are maintained by a “What’s removed from the building, and highly skilled team using carefully relocated to their interesting about traditional methods who work studio which is conveniently to retain as much of the working with stained situated just across the windows’ original glass as road on Eastgate. possible. The glass, its glass is that the tools stain, and the metal frame When asked how long —on and methods have holding the window together average — each window are all vulnerable and took to repair, Tom spoke of barely changed constantly at risk of day to day how each window varied, and over time!” wear and tear. the time allocated to restore each one is dependent The Dean’s Eye is perhaps the most upon the size, age, and condition of the prestigious and widely recognised of the glass; “The condition of each one is Cathedral’s windows — possessing a seven dependent upon how well made the window and a half metre diameter, and consisting of was made in the first place,” he said. 77 panels. A major restoration project was completed on this window in April 2006 — an assignment which spanned a 16 year period, at a cost of over £2 million. We spoke to Tom Küpper, whose invaluable experience in the conservation industry has earned him an esteemed position within the

“The key to successfully restoring a window lies in the knowledge of how a window is made from scratch — one can only fully understand how to repair it, if there is an awareness of how it was constructed in the first place.”

The Eastgate based workshop is the only one in the UK which has been set up specifically for the glazing needs of an ecclesiastical building. The group also works to maintain the glasswork of the 70 odd Estate buildings. *

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Conservation and Restoration

“The Cathedral is this month planning a £400,000 restoration of all four lancets underneath the Bishop’s Eye Window...” What is particularly interesting about stained glass conservation is that many of the tools, methods, and techniques have not changed over the centuries. “Knives for lead cutting, pliers, and oil filled cutters are all very similar to the original tools used in the trade.” Tom said. “Whilst modern technology has superseded conventional processes in many trades, it is fascinating that glass conservators still largely exercise medieval practice.” The work done by Tom and his fellow glaziers is fundamental to maintaining the county’s cultural heritage. Whilst stained glass is one of the most stunning forms of architectural embellishment, they are also one of the most susceptible forms of decor.


Before work is carried out on the windows, careful consideration of the historic value, and specific details of each different window is necessary — especially as many of the Cathedral’s windows are centuries old. When asked if the overwhelming responsibility of handling such valuable historic artefacts concerned him — much of the Cathedral’s glass dates back to the 13th century — Tom responded; “We all have responsibilities in life — this is my chosen occupation, and I am confident that I can do my job, and do it well!” At present, the cathedral's works department is planning a £400,000 restoration of all four lancets underneath the Bishop's Eye Window, in the South Transept. n

Top: Image by Helen Brown, Lincolnshire Tourism. Left: Image by Steve Cadman.

Lincoln Cathedral

In Numbers

150,000 Cubic Metres Capacity 57,200 sq feet Total Floor Area 482 feet (147 metres) Interior Length 252 feet (77 metres) Nave, Length 158 feet (48 metres) Choir, Length 720 Total Number of Stained Glass Windows 1220 Year Dean’s Eye Window Installed 5.5 tonnes Weight of the Great Tom, the bell which sounds on the hour

3rd Largest UK Cathedral After St Paul’s and York

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at the Stump

deal of pride Bostonians feel a great t without the towards The Stump, bu Phil and tireless work of brothers ep of the Tony Leonard, the upke ssible. po building would not be for all The pair is responsible , and carving, cleaning, fixing ties... and du ce an en complete maint 273 feet with a tower measuring vertigo! high, there is no room for er they think we’re — I have no idea wheth Botolph’s like to think so!” I’d but , job d ating back to 1309, St goo doing a iversary ann th 700 its d ate celebr says Phil. intenance last year, making its ma tly undergoing a . ore bef r n eve Phil and Tony are cur ren more important now tha project in the g vin car ne five month sto , ant ort imp ays alw due for is are ich First impressions church’s chancel, wh e of Saint Their most tru . ly rch tain Ma ly cer is ear in this and completion eyes on lay t firs s worked on was itor vis y’ve hen the t “W Botolph’s. memorable projec ely uin gen m te some years qui see Boston Stump they an unexpected discovery drop open.” s of the main uth ide mo ins ir the the — ng ck ani awe-stru ago whilst cle ssure pre h hig a such a large tower; “We were using “It is so unusual to find the of one ly n. den tow all sud sm and ly washer, church tower in a relative small bottle nted.” water jets dislodged a It’s virtually unprecede .” ure uct str the from the brothers have Stonemasons by trade, it contained the industry in nce erie “On closer inspection exp e abl had invalu involved in the and se m, tho gha of ttin es No in nam ned the having initially trai er.” An exciting on other prestigious constr uction of the tow having previously worked d-working pair! har a h Minster, Selby discovery for suc landmarks; Southwell y The . ate Est k Par er Stump’s masonry Abbey, and the Clumb The stone used in The nt Botolphs in Sai at rs nearby Clipsham, yea at 31 d rce ate will celebr is all locally sou the in ned ow ren are cks ready for them and May of this year, where it is sawn into blo hard work; ir the e the facilities to for hav ’t nity don mu y com the local to use, as by sight us w kno ton Bos in “Most people


itself. Phil told us do this at St Botolph’s ure of the methods nat nal itio trad the ut abo a stonemason “If e; trad used within the k today, it’s fair bac from the 1500s came be able to do and in t righ fit y’d to say the the job!” e completely by “All car ving is still don llets and chisels,” ma n ode hand using wo he adds. nework, the In addition to all the sto l with other dea o Leonard brothers als hin the church. wit ts jec pro ce nan mainte they took a window For instance, last year the building, and out of the nor th side of and repaired the ed ew ren ed, fully re-carv ing the olv res window themselves, formed due to had ich wh cks cra l str uctura . ent vem the window’s mo one of the county’s “I cer tainly consider it s,” Phil said. ark dm lan ul most beautif t of it.” n “I’m proud to be a par


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Overlooking Grimsby on Spurn Point is a forgotten lighthouse... it’s currently the property of the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, but has most recently found a friend in the form of its new resident artist, Lincolnshire born Mary Rogers, who is now working from the run-down and windswept 19th century structure... Image: George BK.

The Forgotten

Lighthouse O

n the most southern tip of South Holderness, overlooking Lincolnshire lies a three and a half mile spit of land known as Spurn Point. Whilst lighthouses have been located on Spurn for over five hundred years, never before has the distinct landmark been used for the unique purpose that it is today. After climbing its 145 steps, one discovers that the lighthouse is no longer home to the conventional lighthouse keeper, but rather Lincolnshire artist Mary Rogers. Although the lighthouse is currently awaiting a decision from the Heritage Lottery Fund to receive financial backing for its restoration, the building is visually striking and it is immediately clear why it has such a prolific impact on so many people in the area, including its new artist-in-residence Mary Rogers. “When I’m here I feel as though I’m an artist in the truest form. Spurn is a benevolent place.” She recalls first seeing it on walks as a child, but says that she is still “Awe struck... by its natural beauty.”

On a clear day, the lighthouse provides spectacular views of the North Lincolnshire coastline, which means that on Mary’s overnight visits, the born and bred Grimsby girl doesn’t feel too far from home! Sunrises, sunsets, and the movement of the moon are Mary’s main focus, and these inevitably require 24 hour attention — so the lighthouse really is the perfect sanctuary. “The passage of the sun and the moon are symbolic of hope, of new beginnings, and of optimism” she says. As a Grade II listed building, The Yorkshire Wildlife Trust is keen to bring the lighthouse into the public view—they want to use it to enhance people’s enjoyment of the area, brining it back into use after it was decommissioned in 1985. “There is so much history here — Spurn means a lot to so many different people,” says Andrew Gibson, Spurn’s Nature Reserves Officer. The lighthouse is no longer characterised by the traditional roof beacon, and whilst back in the Nineteenth Century the structure worked constantly to reflect light to guide

sailors from across the world, it has now assumed a rather different role. With the modernisation of ships — now much larger — the port is not used in the same way, and it the lighthouse’s navigational role is now redundant. The lighthouse and its surrounding land is currently owned by the Yorkshire Wildlife Trust, and Nature Reserve Officer Andrew Gibson spoke of the flourishing flora and fauna of the area. The reserve’s sand dunes are a scarce habitat, which boasts various plants, beetles, and special ecosystems. It is hoped that use of the lighthouse will boost people’s enjoyment of the nature reserve — it has the potential to be an educational centre. The opportunities that Spurn can offer both up-and-coming, and established Lincolnshire artists are fantastic — the lighthouse is hosting a forthcoming exhibition of students’ artwork from Scunthorpe based John Leggott college, whilst Mary will also continue to occupy the building’s beacon. n

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Conservation and Restoration

The Brains

Behind the Bridge

ith an annual day-to-day maintenance spend of £3.5 million on the Humber Bridge and the Bridge’s Estate, the average spend on major maintenance projects lies at about £3million, which is a telling indication of the hard work being put into the bridge and its estate each and every day.


The team are currently busy with the latest project — launched in March 2010 — which involves the dehumidification of the bridge’s main cables, and is due for completion in December 2012. It is hoped that the work will prevent the deterioration of the wires — it will be the third bridge in the United Kingdom to have a main cable dehumidification system. The Humber Bridge Board works independently from the local authorities, which means Peter and his dedicated team work around the clock to keep the bridge clear for the public to use and enjoy. In cold spells for example, the Board are autonomously responsible for clearing, gritting, and de-icing the bridge to ensure that it is safe for the public to use. Many people underestimate the intricacy of the bridge’s composition — the bridge is in fact suspended by 15,000 five millimetre cables. When you put that into perspective, the bridge is actually being held by wires the same diameter as a pencil! Whilst this might come as a surprise to many, Peter described how the bridge was designed to withstand the maximum possible load; “The model was

Bridgemaster Peter Hill on the behind the scenes works which keep this Lincolnshire structural masterpiece up and running...

devised to bear the weight of a four lane traffic jam consisting of a combination of cars and HGV’s.” “In the last inspection measuring the cables’ deterioration, just eight out of 15,000 had broken” he added. Aside from the major repair projects, there is always painting, oiling, or lubricating to be done on the bridge. The 28 man maintenance team have got their work cut out ensuring that the world’s fifth longest main span bridge is fit to be used by some 120,000 vehicles every week. “It takes two summer seasons to paint the whole thing” says civil engineer and bridgemaster Peter. “There are eight acres of surface to paint!” The maintenance programme is ongoing, and there are various tasks scheduled year round. General inspections are conducted bi-annually, although the Board has plans to move over to a risk based assessment regime. This would work on the basis that the elements of the bridge which pose greater risks will be given priority in the assessment schedule. “Each fundamental element will be rated for criticality” says Peter. “We aim to break the bridge down into its fundamental elements and then apply a timescale for each critical element — we believe this will be a more effective means of assessment.” n Image: Sheffield Tiger.


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Conservation and Restoration

Up On The Roof

at Burghley House Alan Scott is the Estate Manager at Burghley House... and this month, the Elizabethan property’s 29 chimneys receive their bi-annual sweep... here, we find out why it’s such an important job! s one of the largest and grandest houses of the first Elizabethan Age, this impressive Tudor mansion based in Stamford was built and largely designed by William Cecil, Lord High Treasurer to Queen Elizabeth I between the years of 1555, and 1587.


With 35 ground and lower floor rooms, 80 lesser rooms, countless bathrooms, halls, and passageways, a lead roof extending to three quarters of an acre, and 2,000 acres of land, it comes as no surprise that there is a dedicated team devoted to the upkeep of this spectacular building and its surrounding estate. Leading the Burghley Estate Maintenance Team, and paying the estate a visit every single day of the year, is Alan Scott — who claims that his short four minute commute makes it no hard task! A carpenter by trade, Alan has worked on the estate since the 1980s, and leads a nine man maintenance team, whose trades range from carpentry and Collyweston slating, to painting and stonemasonry. Whilst the house itself is closed between October and March, the team works through a winter programme when the house is shut, and the park is open 365 days a year, so it really is a full time job.


“It sounds like a long period to be closed — but March soon comes around!” says Alan. Perhaps the most unique aspect of the house’s structure is its roof, which spans over a staggering area of three quarters of an acre. 29 chimney stacks and 72 towers inevitably require intense maintenance — and whilst the roof necessitates very little attention on a day-to-day basis, the bi-annual chimney cleaning regime is currently dawning on the Burghley Estate team. Completed next month and again in October, the team is keeping busy preparing not only for the scheduled chimney clean, but also for the House’s seasonal re-opening. Because the roofscape is an image which is strongly associated with Burghley, it is a real priority to ensure the preservation and conservation of such an iconic piece of architecture. The roof’s columns are strengthened with steel cores, and this, combined with the demands of the roof’s intricate stonework poses a real challenge for Alan and his team. “Firstly we seal off the flue in whichever room we are sweeping.” Alan says. “Secondly, we access the roof via the internal stairwell and erect a light tower scaffold against the chimney.”

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Main: Alan Scott, Estate Manager, Insets: one of the estate’s masons and the view from Burghley’s roof of its inner courtyard.

“They are swept from above, downwards, using a traditional sweeping head which has a 100mm diameter iron ball attached to a 25mm diameter hemp rope.” This is then lowered down the chimney until it reaches the fire where another member of the team would be waiting. “The seal is then removed and the fire opening is vacuumed clean — then it’s onto the next!” One chimney can take around two to three hours from start to finish. One the most significant structural projects that Alan can recall at Burghley was the re-structuring and re-building of the lead roof, which began in 1983, and lasted for ten years. The roof is now compartmentalised into four or five sections, and was split up as a preventative measure should one its 29 chimney stacks happen to catch fire.

“After the Windsor Castle fire, fireproofing the roof of Burghley House was a priority...”

“After the shock of the Windsor Castle Fire in 1992, the risk of fire became a prominent concern for many working behind the scenes at historic buildings across the country.” Alan said. “Such beautiful houses and their contents really are irreplaceable,” he added. When asked if he feels a great sense of pride in the upkeep of such a beautiful building, Alan responded; “When you work to preserve a building as prestigious as this, you really do cherish it.” n


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Farewell Bishop Having announced his retirement in March 2010, the Bishop of Lincoln steps down from his post as Pride goes to press. This month we celebrate both John’s 65th birthday and his nine years in the post as one of the Church of England’s most progressive and positive Bishops as Dr John Saxbee prepares for what we hope will be a long and happy retirement with wife Jackie...

Words: Rob Davis. Image: Rob Savage/Diocese of Lincoln.

BISHOP JOHN SAXBEE is a true radical. When others in his position would be celebrating the last day of their role with a smart meal or a party for friends and family, John will, instead, be sleeping rough in front of Lincoln Cathedral to raise awareness of the plight of the homeless. “I’d much rather be doing that than attending a posh dinner!” he says, in a manner that’s neither self-approving, nor spurious. Always one to ‘roll his sleeves up,’ John has consistantly gone to innovative — sometimes extreme — measures to make the church approachable and accessible. He loves working in schools, but his role as a member of the Church of England’s Board of Education pales next to his flight with the Red Arrows in 2006, his Hibaldstow skydive, or his march in chains to support abolitionists of slavery. As well as being daring, John is also diligent — the patron of 42 charities — and successful; “The Diocese of Lincoln is the only non-London diocese that’s growing.” he says. “That’s partly due to population growth, but most of all, due to our efforts to reach out to people.” The Diocese of Lincoln also ordained more people than any other last year, and has always been praised for its innovation; mid-week services, and in particular its media friendliness. “We’ve a large number of parishes — 662 in total — so we’ve had to be very good at communicating with people.” says John. “We’ve a small population, sparsely spread out, so we’ve had to be good at working with the media.”


Moreover, John arrived in Lincolnshire at a time when the Diocese of Lincoln was experiencing the fallout from divisions at the Cathedral. Then serving as the Bishop of Ludlow, a role he had occupied for the past eight years, John was refreshingly immune to the political unrest and proceeded to turn the Diocese around. “It was a great time of discovery.” says John, a Bristolian whose alma maters include Bristol and Durham, where he studied for a Theology degree, and gained his PhD. “I had no experience of Lincolnshire, whatsoever.” “My first impression of the county was how friendly it was.” says John. “I was also struck by the diversity of the landscape — we have industrial towns, beautiful countryside, little village communities and, of course, a vibrant and brilliant city.” “The landscape took some getting used to though.” John confesses. “Big skies and rolling countryside. I quickly learned that the idea that Lincolnshire is flat is absolute nonsense!”

Bishop John has flown with the

Red Arrows, enjoyed a skydive over Hibaldstow near Brigg and marched in chains to protest against slavery...

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Below: The Bishop of Grantham The Right Revd Dr Timothy Ellis and The Bishop of Grimsby, The Right Revd David Rossdale.

John also came to the county during the Jim Speechley saga in 2002, and out of that founded the Lincolnshire Assembly three years later as a non-decision making body to form stronger links with the community, business sector and voluntary organisations & charities to develop Lincolnshire. “I’m a keen reader, especially books about politics.” he says. “And I’m keen to unite communities and companies. I spend a lot of time going out to see people — that’s what I love doing — but no two days are alike.” John says he visits factories, farms and businesses, as well as spending at least two days a week in schools wherever possible. With tighter legislation and more bureaucracy though, the role is changing, perhaps not for the better.

This is explored in his second book, No Faith in Religion, published in 2009 which is a cri de coeur to make the distinction between God and organised religion. “If religion is about recruiting for God, and faith is about serving God, there’s too much religion in the world, and not enough faith.” says John.

“If religion is about recruiting for god, and faith is about serving god, there’s too much religion in the world, and not enough faith.”

“There’s health & safety, child protection and employment legislation to wade through now.” he says. “It’s frustrating, and it takes me away from what I really enjoy, which is seeing people in their natural environment.” Another frustration John harbours is different ideologies’ failure to make a distinction between the dichotomy of religion and faith.

Upon his retirement John’s main intention is to read and write, but with a large library of unread books and some downsizing to do, he’ll have to carefully craft a reading list first. “We’re downsizing from a large 16 room house and moving into a bungalow in Pembrokeshire.” he says. “So we’ll be having a massive clear out.” John’s other retirement plan is to learn to cook. Currently wife Jackie is the domestic goddess — as well as John’s PA for the past two decades.

“Jackie has been absolutely wonderful.” he says. “She always knows where I am, she’s so personable and she’s a real blessing both as a partner and as a colleague.” That’s good news; with John’s birthday on 7th January, his last day on 15th January and a farewell service on that day too, they’ll soon be spending a lot more time together! n


DR JOHN SAXBEE has served as the Bishop of Lincoln since 2002, but let’s not forget the work of the county’s hard-working suffragen Bishops too! The suffragen Bishop of Grantham is Dr Tim Ellis, a Yorkshireman who rejoices to live and work in Lincolnshire. Trained at King's College, London and St Augustine's College, Canterbury, he has a special interest in ecclesiastical architecture in which he gained a Doctorate from York University. Tim's parish ministry was in urban parishes in Manchester, Salford and Sheffield until he came to Lincolnshire as Archdeacon.


A keen supporter and season ticket holder at Sheffield Wednesday, Bishop Tim also enjoys travel, fine wines, modern music and Jack Russell dogs.

them amid all the changes which are going on both in society and in the Church. Bishop David enjoys travelling, cooking, computers and DIY.

The Church in Lincolnshire, he says, is about; “Transforming ourselves, our communities and the world into the image of God — an image of justice, peace and love.” His present ministry covers the southern half of the County of Lincolnshire.

The county also has two archdeacons, in Stow & Lindsey’s and Sleaford.

Meanwhile, Irby on Humber’s Right Revd David Rossdale became Bishop of Grimsby in 2000 having previously been a parish priest and Rural Dean in Berkshire.

Currently in Quarrington’s Tim Barker moved to Lincolnshire in 1998, after working in the Diocese of Chester since his ordination in 1980 as a parish priest, communications officer and Bishop’s Chaplain.

As well as working with the parishes in the north of the Diocese, Bishop David is involved with Church Schools and also with the Ecumenical Chaplaincies organised by Lincolnshire Chaplaincy Services. Bishop David’s vision for the church is that each congregation should be authentically engaged with and relevant to the community in which it worships. David is currently studying how the work of Vicars is changing and how the church can make best use of

Market Rasen’s Jane Sinclair has been in full-time ministry since 1983, serving as a deaconess, deacon and, from 1994, as a priest.

Tim was Vicar of Spalding and District Dean of the Elloe Deaneries until he became Archdeacon of Lincoln in September 2009. Tim was a member of the Cathedral Chapter for eight years, and is one of the three clergy members from the Diocese of Lincoln serving on the Church of England’s General Synod. The Diocese operates from the Old Palace, adjacent to Lincoln Cathedral, and has more than 220 clergy and lay workers, with 662 parishes and 647 church buildings.

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Woody’s Bar

and Lakeview Restaurant

Extensive Á La Carte Menu available Senior Citizens Menu available Monday – Friday Luncheons 3-Course Set Menu available Sunday – Thursday Evenings

Willoughby Road, Ancaster, Grantham Lincs NG32 3RT Tel: 01400 230552.


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Milling Around Celebrating the third anniversary of their popular pub restaurant, Paul and Tracy Topliss are this month creating brand new menus for The Mill in Boston, and are looking forward to the first summer in their second, restaurant The Ball House, just down the road, too... Words: Rob Davis.

CONGRATULATIONS this month to Tracy and Paul Topliss of The Mill on Boston’s Spilsby Road. The team behind one of the town’s most popular restaurants is celebrating three years at the venue this month, with plenty planned for this year including brand new menus, the first wedding receptions at the venue, and the first summer in their new restaurant just down the road. Despite being just three years old, the venue has already won an award in Lincolnshire Pride’s Restaurant of the Year competition 2009, as well as Batemans’s Best Pub Food award, and last month also scooped the Boston Business of the Year, judged by Lincolnshire solicitors Chattertons. The re-opening of the venue in 2009 followed a £1.75m investment in quite a tired venue, and one that was orientated toward a drinks trade rather than attracting diners. The investment has proved worthwhile to say the least.


The venue is this month celebrating

its third anniversary, by unveiling brand new menus and preparing to host its first weddings...

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“We’ve had some great feedback about the service and the look & feel of the restaurant being up to the same standard as the food — we couldn’t ask for a better compliment!” says Tracy...

Tracy and Paul are both from Lincolnshire and worked in Spalding before jetting off abroad for experience in the industry in Portugal and Australia. They returned to the county to settle here permanently, and discovered the Mill in 2007. The brewery was, at that time, looking to make the venue its flagship pub restaurant, and with a comprehensive revamp including re-landscaping of the front garden, new kitchen and redesigned restaurant and bar area, became so, very quickly indeed. “We had free rein over the place, which was great, because we knew exactly what we wanted to create.” says Tracy. The venue features a combination of rich, warm furnishings in reds & purples with traditional oak tables & silverwear and rustic tables and slate flooring in the bar area. The food also echoes a similar sentiment, and this month, The Mill unveils its new spring menus with a lunchtime menu which includes a selection of eight starters and lighter options, eleven main course options and an additional choice of salads, steaks and baguettes. Also popular at the venue is a ‘Ladies Who Lunch’ day every Monday and Wednesday with concessionary menus designed for ladies’ groups such as Round Table and Inner Wheel groups. New to the venue’s Spring menus is the Yellow Belly Platter, featuring home-made chutneys and pickles served alongside haslet and locally sourced pork pie & stuffed chine, and a refreshing King Prawn and Scallop Kebab with salad & lemon dressing. During evening service, patrons can choose from more involved variations of lunchtime favourites and exclusive dishes to evening service, from a 16oz Chateaubriand to our opening spread’s featured dish, Lamb Two Ways — a braised lamb and a spring lamb cutlet with honey-roasted root vegetables.


A total of seven starters and 12 main course options are available during evening service, with highlights of the new Spring menus including a Whole Roast Partridge cooked freshly to order and Halibut Steak on a Green Pea & Oak Smoked Salmon Risotto. Naturally all meals are prepared freshly to order and desserts are home-made too. A good selection of dessert staples include Vanilla Crème Brulée, Chocolate Brownie, and Sticky Toffee & Pecan Pudding. New for Spring is a Lemon & Lime Mousse and Warm Poached Pear in Mulled Wine. “It was really important to us that the menus we compiled reflected not just the venue that we’ve created, but the area itself.” says Paul. The dishes all feature local ingredients with renowned suppliers including Boston Sausage, Bycrofts Butchers, Peterborough Game and local farmers for all of the restaurant’s vegetables. “It’s a formula that works.” says Paul. “Good food doesn’t need to be complicated, but it needs good quality ingredients, skillful creation and clean presentation.” Also making an appearance this month around the same time as the venue’s third anniversary is a revamped wine list. 30 bins and house wines from £10.95 ensure something for ever diner’s taste, from a light French Fleurie or weightier New Zealad Sauvignon at £18.95 and £16.95 each to a refreshing Italian Pinot Grigio and French Chablis at £11.95 and £28.95 respectively. There’s also a choice of two champagnes, including a vintage Dom Perignon and reasonably priced Muscat dessert wine. Naturally, the venue also features Batemans’s standard and special edition real ales from the firm’s brewery in Wainfleet. Having already won awards in Lincolnshire Pride’s restaurant of the Year competition, Batemans’s

Previous Spread: Lamb Two Ways — new to the restaurant for Spring 2011. Main: Yellow Belly Platter — another new dish.

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i Best Pub Food award and most recently, Boston’s Business of the Year award, the restaurant has already won respect both with Boston’s restaurant-goers and Bateman’s itself. The couple last year took on a second venue, the Ball House, run by manageress Becky Reeson, and have also launched Simply Perfect with Rachel Wilding. This will be the company’s first season providing bespoke wedding packages at four venues including the firm’s marquee for up to 120 guests. “It’s been an incredible three years.” says Tracy. “It’s been hard work but we’re both really pleased with the way the restaurant has been received. We’re well-thought of and we’ve had some great feedback about the service and the look & feel of the restaurant being up to the same standard as the food — we couldn’t ask for a better compliment!” n

The Mill Inn, Spilsby Road, Boston Food: Quality pub restaurant food with steak options and home-made desserts. Newly refurbished, and now the flagship venue of Bateman’s Brewery. Environment: Refurbished bar and restaurant with plush, comfortable furnishings. Menus: À la carte menu plus lunchtime menu and additional set lunch option. Sunday lunchtime menu plus Ladies Lunch special every Monday and Wednesday with glass of wine on arrival and two courses for £10/head. Prices: Set lunch dining from £10.95 for two courses. À la carte dining with starters around £5 and main courses from £11-£15. Desserts around £5 each. Look Out For: The Mill hosts a Burns Night as Pride goes to press on 26th January, and will hosts a Céilidh in March — date to be confirmed. Wedding bookings now being accepted — see for details. Contact: Booking recommended by calling 01205 352874. For more information visit


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n SHEER LUXURY AND STUNNING FOOD For stunning food and exceptional service, our first recommendation has to be Winteringham Fields. Award Winning Food Having run Winteringham Fields since 2006, Colin and Bex McGurran were awarded the title of Best French Restaurant in Gordon Ramsey’s recent series, and produce consistently excellent cuisine such as the seven course Menu Surprise, at

Winteringham Fields.

£79/head and à la carte dining from £75/head. Sumptuous Accommodation A true ‘restaurant with rooms,’ Winteringham Fields has boutique hotel accommodation from £185/night with four poster beds, jacuzzi baths and, of course, sumptuous decoration. Our Verdict For unashamed luxury it’s our number one choice — a superb option for those seeking a quiet meal for two, perhaps with an overnight stay somewhere that’s not too far away from home!


Presenting our guide to Lincolnshire’s most romantic venues for luxurious Valentine’s Day treats...

ROMANCE Petwood Hotel.


n HISTORY AND ROMANTIC WALKS With nearly a century of heritage and beautiful grounds, The Petwood Hotel offers superb dining and lovely grounds for those seeking a woodland walk. Special Events This month, however, the Petwood’s appeal is furthered by a Valentine’s Day Gourmet Dinner on Saturday 12th February, with four courses for £35/head and optional


m Winteringha . Fields

accommodation, plus a 1940s dance with big band dancing and wartime dress code on 26th February. Our Verdict Fairly priced gourmet dining and and beautiful grounds with romantic woodland walks make this an excellent opportunity to rediscover the Petwood Hotel. Live music courtesy of the hotel’s grand piano, candles and a wood panelled dining room add to the ambiance and create a lovely dining experience.

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n NIGHT LIFE AND ACCOMMODATION Situated in the ‘Hart’ of Nottingham, Hart’s Hotel is stylish and contemporary, close to lots of shopping, entertainment and nightlife.

Valentine’s Day Dining Hart’s Restaurant’s dining credentials were recently reaffirmed as AA Gill — writing in the Sunday Times — awarded the venue four stars for dining and atmosphere and

RomanticTreats commented that: “The menu is really edible — not just edible, but moreish — and it’s absurdly cheap. Hart’s is a commendably accomplished dining room!” Music: The Food of Love February 14th and 27th will see swing and R&B singer Campbell Bass entertain diners in Hart’s Upstairs with the music of Michael Buble, Frank Sinatra and George Benson from £30 for three courses and optional accommodation. Superb dining and excellent entertainment from £30/head.

We’ve chosen to recommend ten venues for a romantic Valentine’s treat — here, we’ve selected short breaks, romantic restaurants and boutique hotels for anyone seeking a little luxury!

Hart’s Hotel.

Hart’s Hotel.


n OPEN FIRES Farndon Boathouse.


n LIVE JAZZ MUSIC Contemporary, stylish with a great riverside location. There’s a good deal to love about Farndon’s Boathouse. However, even better than the style of the venue and its excellent food is the venue’s commitment to live jazz, and February 14th sees a four course menu offered to diners for £40/head with live music from pianist Joe Stafford. There’s even an Early Bird option for diners between 6pm and 7pm with concessionary £22.50 dining, and around eight starters and ten main courses

to choose from on the à la carte menus.

If your idea of romance is a bottle of particularly juicy red wine and the crackle of an open fire, we can heartily recommend The Tally Ho!

Recently Refurbished The venue is just two and a half years old and underwent a serious refurbishment in the summer of 2008. However last month the venue closed for another revamp, making it one of the freshest, coolest places to dine, especially for jazz aficionados.

A former working farm and popular venue with the area’s hunts, the Tally Ho! is a rustic venue with exposed original stonework, beamed ceilings and pews in the bar, and all-important romantic open fireplaces. A warm, cosy and intimate venue, the place is at its best in winter.

Treat yourself on 14th February, with ten ways to spoil each other with quality dining and luxurious hotels...

Food at the Tally Ho! is on a similar theme; smart, wellthought out dishes prepared brilliantly, but served in a comfortable relaxed environment. Our Verdict Less formal than other venues featured here but maintaining high standards in terms of quality food and service, with a strong emphasis on quality and the use of local ingredients.

The Tally Ho!


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Combining a ‘his and hers’ spa-break and a romantic meal is superb way to spend a little time with one another, and just a stone’s throw from the city of Lincoln, Branston Hall is the perfect place to do just that.

Food For Thought Branston Hall is hosting a candle-lit four course meal for £40/head on Saturday 12th February in its Lakeside Restaurant. The à la carte menu comprises four starters, four main courses and a selection of desserts including a indulgent Hot Chocolate Pudding and Treacle Tart with Orange Zest Marscapone — weekend packages including two nights accommodation are also available for £195/couple. Spa Break Branston Hall’s adjacent spa, Simpsons, is also hosting two offers in February. Couples can enjoy the spa’s facilities with a Tri-Enzyme Facial, Rasul Mud Temple session and Neck & Shoulder Massage followed by afternoon tea at the hotel for £160/couple. Alternatively, those visiting the spa for a Tri-Enzyme, Pro-Collagen or Visible Brilliance facial can enjoy a Deep Tissue Full Body Massage free of charge. Our Verdict A superb way to spend quality time together and relax, with quality dining afterwards.


n ENJOYING HISTORIC STAMFORD TOGETHER Stamford is easily one of Lincolnshire’s most luxurious and beautiful market towns. A superb day can be had enjoying shopping, walking or spending time at one of the town’s attractions; Burghley House, for example, or its arts centre, with a well-thought out programme of events, or Tolethorpe’s open air theatre in the summer months. Exquisite Food The George of Stamford is, of course, famed for its exceptional cuisine, and today there are two restaurants in which to dine. The oak panelled dining room has a relaxed formality with exceptional service and a comprehensive menu.

Traditional favourites such as Eggs Benedict, Fish & Chips and Sirloin Steak sit comfortably alongside luscious greenery and pantiled flooring, naturally lit from a skylight, to provide a traditional orangery style dining room with The George a more buzzy atmosphere.

of Stamford is one of the county’s most respected dining rooms — a superb Valentine’s Day treat...

À la carte menus change daily and comprise around 14 starters and 18 main courses. Especially popular at the venue are English Hand Carved Roast Beef and Dover Sole. The George of Stamford’s cheese trolley is exceptional, and a traditional dessert trolley offers additional temptation to conclude your meal in luxury.


For less formal dining which nonetheless retains the excellent service and quality for which the venue is justly revered, The George of Stamford also has a second restaurant known as the Garden Room.

Accommodation The George is traditional in its feel with old fashioned bellhops and a generous whiff of beeswax on polished wood. However, an ongoing programme of restoration has ensured its 47 bedrooms remain individual and offer accommodation commensurate with the quality of the venue’s dining. Our Verdict With lots of independent shops and Burghley House nearby there are plenty of ways to pass the time in Stamford — and The George is an ideal base from which to explore this beautiful town!

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n LOVE IN THE HEART OF LINCOLN The White Hart has offered visitors to Lincoln a contemporary new dining room since 2008. Under Head Chef Sam Owen, it still provides uphill Lincoln with extremely high quality dining in a stylish environment that’s barely rivalled across the city. Local ingredients feature

extensively in the dining room, with six starters, plus a selection of six meat and fish dishes as well as innovative home made desserts. Our Verdict The hotel is certainly smart following an extensive refurbishment, but core values of high quality dining and attentive service ensure the Lincoln Hotel’s appeal is more than just skin deep.

Some of our venues have been chosen for their individual style, some for their dining credentials and some because they constitute a superb venue for a city break, spa treat or a romantic getaway...



An elegant option for a


n MAKE A BOUTIQUE HOTEL PROPOSAL Those seeking to make a proposal on February 14th whether for a wedding or a renewal of vows will find Washingborough’s refurbished boutique hotel the ideal venue. According to the hotel, there were a record number of proposals on Valentine’s Day last year, and the team — headed by Lucy and Edward Herring — is hoping to better that record in 2011. Quality Dining The venue was purchased in 2005 and subjected to a £250,000 refurbishment. The sumptuous dining room and and Georgian architecture were sup-

meal for two, This month, candlelit South Rauceby’s Bustard Inn is we’ve selected hosting an Lincolnshire’s most impressive four romantic venues, each course set menu featuring with a unique romantic Langoustine Bisque, an assiette inducement for of starters, Venison your visit! Wellington and an

plemented by brand new menus designed by Executive Chef Patron Lucy and Head Chef Dan Wallis.

This year, the venue is running a special Valentine’s Day menu from 11th to 14th February — Washingborough is one of the most romantic places to dine in the county!

assiette of desserts. Bookings can be made at £60/head, with a red rose, candlelight and romantic music all part of the experience.

In addition, diners can expect a roaring log fire and the charm of the Grade II listed restaurant, refurbished by Alan and Liz Hewitt three years ago. Head Chef Phil Lowe has worked alongside Marco Pierre White, and Gary Rhodes, and has contributed to the Bustard’s recommendation in the most recent Michelin Guide, so diners can be assured of impressive dining credentials. Our Verdict High quality, romantic dining excellence near Sleaford.

OUR 10 MOST ROMANTIC RESTAURANTS Winteringham Fields, 01724 733096, The Petwood Hotel, 01526 352411, Hart’s Hotel, 0115 988 1900, The Boathouse, 01636 676578, The Tally Ho, 01529 455170, Branston Hall Hotel, 01522 793305, George of Stamford, 01780 750750, Washingborough Hall, 01522 790 340, The Lincoln Hotel, 01522 520348, The Bustard Inn, 01529 488 250,



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The Proof is in the


For sweet-toothed readers what could be better this month than the sweetest and most decadent puddings to round off your Valentine’s Day meal for two!

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Main: Homemade Chocolate Ganache accompanied by Cornish Clotted Cream and Griottine Cherries at the Admiral Rodney, Horncastle. 1: Chocolate Panna Cotta, Berry Compote and Honeycomb Tuille at Barnsdale Lodge, Rutland. 2: Praline and Chocolate Feuilletine with Vanilla Ice Cream at Winteringham Fields, Scunthorpe. 3: Dark and White Chocolate Truffles, Poppy Seed Tuille, Mini Chocolate Sponge with Chantilly Cream and After Eight Ice Cream on Crushed Amaretto with a Chocolate Strawberry at The Boat House, Farndon. 4: Chocolate Brownie with Clotted Cream at the Bustard Inn, South Rauceby. 5: Strawberry Pavlova at The Finch Hatton Arms, Ewerby. 6: Chocolate Fondant, Glazed Lemon Tart and Vanilla Pod Ice Cream at Forest Pines, Brigg.


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Sample Dishes 7.




Jane King Chef Patron at the Generous Briton, Brant Broughton How did your career begin? I was born and raised in Claypole, and began working in the industry at 17, having trained at Grantham College. I later spend four years at our sister pub-restaurant, the Red Lion in Caythorpe, before working at a couple of other venues and eventually coming to the Generous Briton in August 2008 to run my own business.



What represents your ‘food heaven’ and what’s your personal ‘food hell’? I like lots of traditional English dishes, which is what our customers enjoy too. I like being adventurous though, and our monthly theme evenings allow us to experiment a little. We’ve just hosted a Burns Night and will later this month host a Medieval Banquet night too. Regarding my food hell, there’s not much I don’t like, but I definitely have a savoury rather than a sweet palate. What’s the secret behind creating a great dining experience? We’ve been here three years now, so we really know our market — high quality traditional English food. The secret is using fresh, local ingredients and providing wholesome, satisfying dining.

7: Trio of Rhubarb; Sorbet, Crème Brulée and Trifle at Washingborough Hall Hotel, Lincoln. 8: Rhubarb, Cherry Sorbet and Tuille Cannelloni in a Sugar Basket at Kenwick Park, Louth. 9: Dark Chocolate Delice with Sesame Seed Ice Cream and Salted Caramel at The Lincoln Hotel, Eastgate. 10: Warm Pear Poached in Mulled Wine Sauce served with Pear Sorbet at The Mill, Boston. 11: Créme Brulée at That Tally Ho, Aswarby. 12: Chocolate Brownie at the Red Lion Inn, Caythorpe. n


Is there life beyond the kitchen? No. But I love my job, so my enthusiasm is still there! For more information on the Generous Briton or for bookings, call, 01400 272 119.

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The Craft of Cupcakes The past couple of years have seen a renaissance for the humble cupcake, and this month we put the icing on the cake of their rediscovery by meeting some of Lincolnshire’s recently emerged cake artists! Cupcakes are the ultimate comfort food. Small, individually decorated bundles of warmth and happiness, and over the past couple of years, there’s been a real resurgence in baking them. In 2011, there are around a dozen bakers — as opposed to a baker’s dozen — producing designer cupcakes in this newly created home industry. One such artist is Sarah Lupton, who, like many of the county’s cupcake artists, turned a pleasure into profession last August and began to produce her cupcakes full time under the name Daisymay Cakes. “Baking cakes is a traditional skill that has been lost.” Says Sarah. “People taste my cakes and love them — which is great for me because I find baking so easy, so rewarding, almost therapeutic. It’s a shame the skill has been lost but I’m also incredibly lucky as it gives me the opportunity to do something I really enjoy for other people!

colourful, sparkly end products are perhaps the main reasons customers are clamouring to order Sarah’s cakes, but the really clever thing about these artisan cupcake producers is that by undercutting the formal occasion cake market, they’re finding a great deal of repeat business from their clients for ‘minor’ special occasions rather than christenings and weddings. “A lot of work goes into them.” Says Sarah. “They’re all hand-made and hand-finished, and it’s essential that the boxes and ribbons are right, they should look great, taste great and really make the recipient happy — that’s my aim!” Another Lincolnshire woman

responsible for proliferating the Baking popularity of cupcakes is Sleaford’s Deborah at home really Hopkins. In addition to is therapeutic — creating and selling her designer cupcakes from but when you simply her Asgarby barn, with don’t have time, any number available with local delivery for £1.50 each, enlist our Deborah also teaches the art of making cupcakes to others. experts!

Working from her Billinghay home, Sarah initially made cakes for friends and family, but soon found herself taking requests and eventually left work to make her cakes full time. She produces 20-30 large cakes each week, and around 40 cupcakes, which are also sold in Gary Simpson’s shop at Sleaford’s Four Seasons Garden Centre.

Customers phone Sarah and enjoy the convenience of included delivery as well as lavishly decorated and hand-made cakes that taste great. The price is just as sweet too — a dozen cupcakes, are available for just £16, with large cakes (7” to 12”) from £10-£45 delivered within her preferred two days notice. The value for money and beauty of the


Deborah’s next course is on Saturday 19th February, with several places still available for £40 each and more courses planned in the future months. The full day courses are entirely hands-on and cover creating different flavours, as well as basic sugarcraft and icing techniques. The courses are delivered as part of a programme of ‘forgotten domestic skills’ courses under the name The Homemade House. These include The Basics of Baking, Bread Making Made Simple and Make your Own Wedding Cake, as well as other crafts including Rag-Rugging, Candle Making, Quilting, Dress Making and Floristry.


Contemporary Cupcakes Why Cupcakes?: The rise in popularity of designers of 1950s kitsch such as Cath Kidston has led to a resurgence in ‘long forgotten’ domestic skills. Sarah Lupton: Sarah Lupton is based in Billinghay, and creates large occasion cakes from £10-£45 and cupcakes in batches of a dozen. Delivery is usually included, and orders can be accepted with 48 hours notice. Call 01526 861044 for details. Deborah Hopkins: Deborah has recently taken over The Homemade House, based in Asgarby. The cupcake artist provides cupcakes and tuition in the art of baking for small groups of adults and children; call 01529 460 060 or see or

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Our pick of the best cupcakes from our experts... the best way to celebrate a loved one’s birthday, and great for children’s parties!

Right: Pink iced cake with sugarcraft flowers by Sarah Lupton. Below: Two Hearts cupcake by Deborah Hopkins.

Below: A Cupcake by Any Other Name — Rose Cupcake by Deborah Hopkins.

Sarah Lupton in her Billinghay kitchen — the cook turned her cupcake baking hobby into a fulltime profession last year. Above, Right: Deborah Hopkins in her Asgarby kitchen.

“I use premium ingredients including vanilla extract to give a pure flavour.” Says Deborah. “The buttercream is light and creamy but not too sweet which is as it should be. Many of the decorations are hand made and edible glitter is an easy way to add a shimmery statement.” With cupcakes making a real return to popularity, becoming skilled in the art of creating dazzling examples in your own kitchen is definitely a skill that evokes halcyon days of domestic bliss. Of course, nowadays women are compelled to have successful careers, immaculate homes, perfect children and meet any number of other obligations which all command their time. As such, calling upon our experts to do all the hard work for you is a great way to cut a corner and enjoy fantastic, bespoke and absolutely beautiful home-made cupcakes without the effort… leaving your own baking endeavours for when you have a little more time! n

Above: Mint green cupcake with pink flower by Sarah Lupton. Right: Vanilla buttercream cupcake with blue butterfly by Sarah Lupton. Below: Deborah Hopkins’s trio of Hearts Cupcake.

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RIOJA RENAISSANCE Steep Hill Wines’s resident expert Ben Straw is this month stuck between rioja and a hard place as he explores one of Spain’s best wine growing regions...

La Rioja is one of the smallest regions of mainland Spain and one of the most important wine growing areas of Europe. It has a reputation bigger than its land area; extending along the Ebro River, the region is practically split into two. Rioja Alta which has a great deal of rainfall and has a mild climate is the most important region. Further to the east are Rioja Alavesa and Rioja Baja which are hotter and more arid areas. The province capital, Logroño links the two areas. n Muga Barrel Fermented White Rioja - £9.95 A slow fermentation of Viura (90%) and Malvasía (10%) in new French oak and three months on fine lees are the secrets of this careful production process. A very bright, clear white wine packed with aromas.


Beronia Tempranillo Elaboración most modern bodegas in the Rioja. Especial - £9.75 Prepare to be enchanted: this stunning Bodegas Beronia is a relative red is rich, velvety and utterly newcomer to the Rioja scene. seductive. A very rare example of a The winery was founded in the single varietal Graciano, this unique 1970’s by a group of businessmen and ageworthy red has an elegant who thought the idea of their own wine structure and tantalising flavours of rather attractive. This is a single blue fruit, cream and layered spices. varietal, rather than the usual blend Fuller than a Tempranillo-based Rioja and is fermented in American oak but silky smooth. then matured in cask for a further Viña Real Gran Reserva nine months. The wine has a Rioja - £20.75 particular aroma of black fruits, Made by the old guard of bitter chocolate and fresh Vibrant Rioja at Compañía Vinícola del ground coffee and a Riojas from Norte de España, more delightfully vigorous and £9.75 to commonly known as CVNE. rounded mouthful of rich £38.50. Founded in 1879 by two fruit with a vanilla edge. brothers, Eusebio and Raimundo Ondarre Graciano Real de Asúa, the firm has Rioja - £10.25 remained in the hands of their Bodegas Ondarre, whose winery descendants, currently in the fifth is 10km from Logrono, the Riojas generation. A very gentle nose, stylish capital is, without doubt, one of the and reserved, with soft meaty fruit. Good weight and no shortage of style on the palate.




Muga Prado Enea Gran Reserva - £38.50 Bodegas Muga is located in the historical Barrio de La Estación in Haro. The facilities are two centuries old, built mainly of stone and oak. In fact, oak is paramount in the winery. Made from 80% Tempranillo and 20% Garnacha, Mazuelo and Graciano. Has aromas of spices and chocolate, wrapped up in fruit which is almost like a liqueur. A powerful attack, balanced and yet syrupy smooth. Very long aftertaste. There is a finesse and balance here, framed with a structure and sufficient substance to age beautifully. n



Featured wines are available at Steep Hill Wines, Lincoln. Call 01522 544737 or see


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Village Limits Stixwould Road, Woodhall Spa LN10 6UJ

Telephone 01526 353312 FULLY REFURBISHED JAN 2011. OPEN 7 EVENINGS A WEEK. Serving Tastes of Lincolnshire award winning food. Fresh food, local ales & homemade desserts available. Special Diets catered for. Located half a mile past the Petwood Hotel. Call ahead to avoid disappointment. Visit for menus.

The Queen’s Head Kirkby-La-Thorpe, Sleaford

Telephone 01529 305743 Proud winners of several awards recently including Lincolnshire Pride’s Restaurant of the Year 2009, and the Taste of Excellence ‘Best Pub Restaurant Award’ for best pub restaurant food in Lincolnshire. Thursday Evening Steak Supper, Sunday Evening Supper, Early Bird Special Served 6pm-7pm Tues & Wed, Lunchtime Specials from 12pm – 2.30pm Tues–Sat. Now open Mondays. See or our advert in this edition.

Stapleford Park Country House Hotel Stapleford, Nr. Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire LE14 2EF

01572 787000 Stapleford Park is a relaxed 17th Century home set in 500 acres of parkland. Enjoy amazing food, unobtrusive service and the uniquely elegant surroundings of the award winning Grinling Gibbons dining room at one of England’s finest country house hotels. Lunch is served Wednesday to Friday and starts from £18.50 for two courses. Dinner is served Monday - Sunday and the 3 course Table d'hote menu starts from £46.50.

Our readers appreciate really good food... So, if you’re a quality restaurant, marketing your business in Lincolnshire Pride means reaching the county’s regular restaurant diners. that’s food for thought.

To advertise on our Eating Out pages, call our marketing experts today, on

01529 46 99 77



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Victoriana Celebrating

Meet Andrew and Diane Hampson, whose Horsington property is a celebration of Victorian architecture following an ambitious but successful modernisation project...


The Old Rectory, Woodhall TheHorsington, Coach House, Carlton ScroopSpa Owners: Andrew and Diane Hampson. Style: 1850 former Rectory refurbished in 1980 and 2000 in Victorian style. Receptions: Four receptions, currently arranged as Drawing Room, Sitting Room, Dining Room and Study. Bedrooms: Seven, arranged over two floors with six Bathrooms and two En Suites. Other Features: Set in nine acres of woodland and formal gardens with driving range and converted former coach house. Price: £1.2m. Find Out More: Call Chesterton Humberts, Eastgate Lincoln LN2 1QA. Tel: 01522 546444.

THE FAVOURITE ARCHITECTURAL STYLE of Horsington residents Andrew and Diane Hampson is clearly Victorian. The couple say they love its simplicity, scale and practicality next to the decidedly fancier stylings of the Georgian era, and their recently renovated country home in the village is perfect homage to the stately, dignified style of the era. “We saw the property in the estate agent’s window and loved its shape, its position, its scale — it really was ideal.” says Andrew. The property is situated in Horsington, around four miles from Woodhall Spa, which the couple knew very well. Approached by large gates and a sweeping gravel driveway, it’s a grand property with two upper floors, situated centrally in a nine acre plot. Originally constructed in 1850, the house served as a rectory until the late 1960s, when it was sold by the Church of England and converted into flats. New owners in the 1980s refurbished the property before Andrew and Diane brought the property in 2000 and carried out their own programme of modernisation, bringing the property up to date and refurbishing some of the forgotten Victorian features.


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The comfortable family home is arranged over three floors and features Victorian architecture, as well as seven bedrooms, five bathrooms and four reception rooms...

The couple come from the North West of England and were working in London when they decided a move to Lincolnshire would afford them a larger property and a better quality of life. Andrew and Diane run their own business, reviving flagging fashion brands and finding new markets for other successful brands — Andrew, for instance, assisted in the creation of Marks & Spencer’s Autograph range 16 years ago. “The property is in a great location but it’s also really convenient for both London, and for international travel to places like Amsterdam, given its proximity to Humberside airport.” he says. Upon coming to the property, the couple first re-landscaped the grounds — this may seem an unusual first step, but Andrew


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The dining room features varnished pine floors using reclaimed materials and in original marble fireplace.

wanted the gardens to mature whilst they were embarking on the rest of the refurbishment. This included having the property replumbed and rewired before redecorating it and installing new kitchens & bathrooms.

In addition to the main breakfast kitchen, the property also features a utility kitchen with US style fridge-freezer, dishwasher and further Belfast sink — there are also two pantries and a separate utility room housing the laundry equipment and boiler.

“One of the facets of Victorian property that appeals most is their practicality.” says Andrew. “The house is grand in proportion — some of the ceilings are 11ft high — but everything’s practical, not fussy.”

The suite of kitchens makes the property ideal for entertaining, and with a casual dining area in the kitchen and outdoor breakfast terrace, the formal dining room can afford to be a little grander.

This includes the kitchens; the main breakfast kitchen is elegantly styled with a British Racing Green Aga, Belfast sink and Shaker-style units with central island in cream with marble and solid wood toppers. The kitchen also includes conventional Neff cookers which the couple says is useful when hosting dinner parties.

Like the other reception rooms, there’s elaborate cornice work, a marble fireplace and shuttered windows, as well as restored varnished pine flooring with reclaimed materials used throughout. “The property isn’t Grade II listed — which makes things easier, we’ve embarked on


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We’ve loved the place, and

we’re definitely looking to remain in the area, but we’d like to downsize and so we’ve put the property on the market. We’re hoping the next owners will love it as much as we have.” listed building refurbishment before.” says Andrew. “But being faithful to the architecture and the property’s history was really important to us.” Elsewhere in the house, the sitting room features custom joinery with elaborate Victorian architraving, ceiling roses and cornice work, as well as a bespoke staircase whilst seven bedrooms and five bathrooms create a comfortable, spacious property for guests. “There’s plenty of space outside too.” says Andrew. “The property is situated centrally in the plot, and there’s a lovely summerhouse which is great for barbecues in the summer.” “The Coach House has been converted into office accommodation so it’s ideal for anyone seeking to run a business from the property.” Beyond this Andrew has created his own driving range adjacent to the four acre paddock — there’s the potential for equine accommodation on the ground floor of the coach house — and the two acres of woodland are delightfully mature. Featuring a woodland treehouse for the couple’s nieces and nephews, as well as mature oak, beech and poplar trees, Andrew says it’s a ‘magical’ place, and the perfect contrast to the austerity of the red brick and slate property, currently on the market with Chesterton Humberts for £1.2m. “We’ll miss the place, and we’re definitely looking to remaining in the area.” says Andrew. “But we’re looking to downsize, so we’re hoping to find a family who will love the property as much as we have!” n



Inspired Buys Bespoke cream period kitchen by David Twigg Joinery — 01754 890560, or see Celeste eight or 12 light chandelier from Hull Lighting; call 01482 320864, or see Clearview Stove £call by Flamecraft at Baytree, Spalding; 01406 373600. Seagrave handmade large sofa by Parker & Farr from Hopewells of Nottingham; 0115 953 6000, Dining chairs in English Oak and Italian leather — available in oak, walnut and cherry £186, 90cm kitchen table to match (not pictured) from £879, from Chris Sharp Cabinets, Scampton; 01522 504 506,

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LINCOLNSHIRE'S TREVOR DIGAN’S PASSION FOR GEORGIAN AND VICTORIAN ARCHITECTURE HAS COMPELLED HIM TO CREATE DUKESBURY GARDEN ROOMS WHICH DESIGNS AND BUILDS BEAUTIFUL DETAILED CONSERVATORIES AND ORANGERIES FOR ITS CUSTOMERS GRANTHAM JOINER TREVOR DIGAN really loves Georgian and Victorian architecture. In fact, since leaving school, he has worked for over a decade making and installing luxury timber conservatories for period properties. Trevor has consistently impressed clients with stunning looking orangeries and roof lanterns designed to add to the beauty of the period home rather than detracting from them with an unsuitable modern design. Now he’s celebrating a year of trading, having set up his business, Dukesbury Garden Rooms, offering high quality bespoke garden rooms to match the architecture of each property using only the finest locally sourced materials like hardwood. “Throughout my career I’ve worked for companies like Smedleys, a producer of bespoke timber joinery, and Vale Garden Houses for over a decade.” “As such, I’ve been really lucky, working on nice commissions, on period properties in rural areas where an impeccable finish is really important to the customer.” Trevor’s love of his job and his enthusiasm for craftsmanship and the sympathetic expansion of period properties led him to create the business after he left Vale in 2007. Initially, Trevor worked to create windows and doors, but still picked up referrals for conservatory furbishment, maintenance and repairs. In addition, he was beginning to work on his own garden room commissions, from modest 3m2 x 4m2 structures to huge orangeries and conservatories with elaborate period detailing. Customers pay between £15,000 and £50,000 for Trevor to design and build their rooms, with the end result a beautiful room that complements their property and will last for decades. The majority of Trevor’s commissions are around £20,000, and customers are assured of top quality craftsmanship and the best materials. Trevor can work with his own tradespeople or those with whom his customers are familiar, he provides full project management, liaising with builders,

and gives the customer a full consultation beforehand to discuss design, size, budget and finishing touches. Working from his rural workshop near Grantham, Trevor creates and assembles each building from sustainable hardwood in house to check each elements’ fit. The customer can even see their new room assembled before it is delivered and installed. The buildings are even painted in the workshop, by hand, using Farrow and Ball paints before quality architectural ironmongery is installed.

“I love the reaction from customers when they see their new room.” says Trevor, who has 17 years experience in the industry in total. “With the type of commissions I design and build, quality is everything, and that suits the way I work. Nothing is too much effort, and I’m proud to know that each commission I work on will still be enjoyed three or four decades from now!” For more information call 01476 591694 or see


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Let’s Get Growing!

Kitchen gardener Lorraine Bellis is involved in a weed war on her future allotment site. Fortunately, she has a trick up her sleeve in the form of the ‘no dig’ method of cultivation! Weather permitting, February can be the time to begin gardening in earnest for the coming season.

However, there is a new biological control method available. The method is planting a non-tuber forming relative of the potato called Solanum sisymbriifolium at least a season Of course 2010 was a freezing February and before you want to plant potatoes. as I write this, after experiencing the early This species stimulates the dormant snow in December, I have no idea what 2011 nematode eggs to hatch, but because it will be like. However, February is an opportunity doesn’t give them any nutrition they die. to look back and learn from the lessons in In trials, this plant has caused 60 – 90% of 2010. Last year I grew potatoes for the eelworms in different soil types to first time. Why grow potatoes? hatch. This is a higher percentage You may ask, I did wonder the than potatoes themselves and In the Garden; same myself at one point. better than chemical treatments. Lincolnshire Pride’s Talking Taties Late Blight fungus can be Today, potatoes are an controlled; this is according to Lorraine Bellis works important commercial crop; the RHS, by planting quicker they are fourth after wheat, from her kitchen garden maturing first and second early maize and rice. The first tubers cultivars. These are harvested in Thurlby near came to Europe in the 16th before blight hits in mid to late century from the Americas and summer making main crop Alford became the crop that fed a potatoes particularly susceptible. population during industrialisation. For home growers there are now getting We all know about the Irish potato famine in on for 200 potato cultivars to choose from. the 19th century which was responsible for This includes some of the older ‘heritage’ the death of over one million people. A late cultivars. With such a number to choose potato blight proved to be the fatal disease from there must be something for everyone that killed the crop. Blight and potato cyst and every situation. nematode (eelworm) are the two problems that still persist. Here at Damson cottage, growing potatoes in the kitchen garden during 2010 meant losing Eelworm is a soil borne pest which is widely valuable space to the crop. During 2011 found across the UK. So far, no cultivar is I hope to have the allotment patch ready to completely immune to the pest. grow potatoes. Last year, my main crop


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Above: Lorraine is looking forward to a bumper potato crop! Left: Lorraine hopes to relocate her flock in 2011. Below: Plant shallot sets this month.

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This is the month that all of the fun can begin — weather permitting of

course — Lorraine will this month be chitting potatoes and planting onion sets, as well as sowing peas and sweet peas...

potatoes were affected by eelworm and blight. Thankfully, the second earlies were grown on the opposite side of the garden and were not affected. If you are unsure about which cultivar to grow, but want to try your hand, then there is the option to grown potatoes in sacks. You could try three or four different types for flavour. Sacks are an ideal space saving way to grow potatoes and because you have control over the compost being used, it should be a pest and disease free crop. January/February is the time to start chitting potatoes. Once chitted, they can be set onto 15 – 20cm layer of compost in a sack and covered with another 10cms of compost. Shoots will appear and when they do, add another layer of compost continuing this until 5cms below the top of the sack. Keep the bag watered and the plants fed until harvested. Getting Started with Herbs Mint the perfect accompaniment to potatoes is. This is a great herb to grow in containers. If introduced to the borders it can be come invasive and its root system will smother other plants. It will make an attractive addition to the patio. Mint is a perennial and grows year on year that can mean it needs some maintenance.

they will make a great addition to sandwiches. During February 2010 there was snow on the ground and so preparation for that season was slow to get going. I spent time in the greenhouse, using the newly installed propagator and starting some of the seeds that became the tomato glut and the slow sweet pea propagation. Cataloguing your Hard Work I took the decision to record in a journal the varieties of plants that I tried to grow. Admittedly, that record keeping is a little sketchy as it appears in more than one journal, however, I am pleased to report that I can already benefit from referring to those records before I begin the 2011 season. There are lots of ways to record your experiences, if you are a dab hand with technology you may wish to create tables and spread sheets that are electronically stored. My preference is an old fashioned hard backed book, a pencil and the camera.

Lorraine Bellis works from her Alford garden teaching experienced Photographs can be catalogued on the computer and when I can and novice gardeners decipher my handwriting I can how to grow their relive the emotions as well as the results recorded in the journal. own food... Whatever method you choose, it is a

In the case of an older plant, this is usually by taking cuttings from the roots. With the new plants that you may have bought from the garden centre maintenance means potting into large containers before placing on the patio.

worthwhile exercise. Chicken Run During 2011 I hope to increase my chicken flock, build a new chicken run and relocate the flock, clear the allotment (or least part of it) to begin growing greater quantities of main crops, that’s just for starters!

If you have an unheated porch or conservatory, you can try sowing some salads in containers. The porch or conservatory will act like a garden cold frame and give the seeds enough protection to allow early germination to take place.

I hope some of you will be bitten by the bug this year and begin growing your own food. 20th March 2011 is the ideal time to start; the spring equinox! Here’s to the new season and all it brings! n

If you pick some of the ‘cut and come again’ varieties that have a mix of colours and flavours,

Lorraine Bellis provides one-to-one tuition to those who wish to establish a kitchen garden.


Jobs for February Sow peas and sweet peas. Plant shallots. Mulch fruit trees. Prune autumn fruiting raspberries. Plant bare rooted cane fruits.

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n Make General Garden Improvements February is a good time for doing all sorts of maintenance in the garden, like constructing or improving paths and patios, or erecting a fence, pergola or play equipment for children. n Clear Weeds from your Borders Weeds may already have grown significantly, particularly annual meadow grass and other annuals. It is best to remove them by hand as hoeing can damage the roots of your ornamental plants.


The Lincolnshire Pride Kitchen Garden

Plot size two acres. East-facing, with loam and sand soil. Illustration by Jo Davies of Jo Catherine Designs.

1. Damson Cottage. 2. Cottage Garden. 3. Patio with Herbs Salad Planters. 4. Ornamental Pond/rose arbour. 5. Kitchen garden. 6. Summer House. 7. Garage and Hard Standing. 8. Greenhouse. 9. Hen House. 10. Polytunnel. 11. Compost Heap. 12. Pond. 13. Allotment. 14. Native Hedging. 15. Leylandaii 16. Lime Trees. 17. Pine Trees. 18. Lawn. 19. Fruit Trees. 20. Hazel. 21. Rose Bed and Silver Birch.

n Restore and Improve Your Lawn You can start restoring the lawn from the end of February. Turf can be laid during frost-free weather and you can seed patches. If a particular ‘track’ keeps getting worn in your lawn it might be worth laying something like stepping stones. n Pruning Fruit Trees Prune your fruit trees before the end of February. Later pruning can lead to loss of sap. Bear in mind that vigorous pruning will promote the growth of substantial shoots. Wait until May before pruning trees with stoned fruits - such as cherries, plums, nectarines, peaches and apricots - because of the risk of silverleaf disease. n Plant and Replant Shrubs If there is no frost, now is an excellent time to plant and replant deciduous shrubs. Many varieties (including hedge plants) are offered with bare roots. If there is a frost or if you do not have time to plant them immediately, you should entrench the roots temporarily. Replant shrubs with as much soil as possible around the roots.



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CountrysideNews Equestrian


On The Farm

News, Events & Countryside Activities From Across Lincolnshire

News In Brief Baumber’s Anti-Turbine Group Wins the Fight Against Wind Turbines CELEBRATING their victory, the Baumber Wind Turbine Action Group (BWAG) were last month delighted to hear that a planning appeal by Enertrag — the company planning to erect turbines near Baumber, Horncastle — has been refused. A summary of refusal declared that; “The proposed wind farm would bring adverse changes to the landscape, both in terms of its character and its appreciation.” “The impacts would be far reaching as a result of the particular qualities and features of the landscape.” “In this regard, the proposed wind farm would be overlooked from the Lincolnshire Wolds area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and the wider context of an extensive landscape with far reaching vistas which are generally untainted by other intrusive development.” The group — chaired by Melvin Grosvenor and patronised by Sir Peter Tapsell — is delighted with the decision.

Showground Prepares for Point to Point Meetings and Horse Trials Blankney’s February Point to Point. Lincoln Horse Trials 18th-20th March... A DATE FOR YOUR DIARY, The Blankney Hunt has confirmed it will be holding its annual Point to Point meeting at the Lincolnshire Showground on 20th February 2011 from 10am. The event will follow the Burton pack’s meeting as Pride goes to press on 23rd January, and will see competitors take on a hellish

Butterfly Park Re-Opens with New Events Diary Long Sutton’s Butterfly Park re-opens this month with a host of new events.

course with brush fences aplenty.

Pre-Novice, Novice and Intermediate level over the three days.

Also for equine enthusiasts, the Showground will be the venue for next month’s Lincoln Horse Trials.

In 2010, the event hosted the trials for two of Britain’s successful youth eventing squads – the Charles Owen British Ponies (riders aged 13 to 16) and the Young Riders (riders aged 18 to 21).

The popular and well established equine event held early in the season, attracts national and international entrants. Leading riders and novices alike compete at

For more information see www.lincolnshire

The park will, in 2011, offer Jungle Book and Medieval weekends, Easter Fun events and a Hug-aHuskie day in the season when it re-opens on 19th February. For more information see www.butterfly

Get In Touch: Email your nature photographs, forthcoming events and news stories to or call 01529 46 99 77.

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FARMING MATTERS Send us your News...! We’re keen to hear the latest news and events from nature groups and charities across the county; email

Following one of the earliest and most prolonged period of severe cold weather in December that I can remember, most Lincolnshire farmers were spending their time assessing damage to crops and property during January...

Discover Birds with a New Lincolnshire Website

Probably the worst affected were the vegetable growers in south Lincolnshire. All the remaining autumn cauliflowers, Dutch and red cabbage crops were completely ruined. A lot of the Brussel sprouts were lodged by the snow thus causing a discolouration of the sprouts. Up to 30% of the sprouts are now sold on the stalk. Some large growers of sprouts cut all their Christmas orders for sprouts on the stalk before taking them into cold stores to gradually let the frost out and then put them through stripping machines, thus causing extra cost with the double handling of the crop.

JUST ADD BIRDS. That’s the message of Lincolnshire’s Simon King. Together with partner Jenny, Simon has created a new website aimed at encouraging more people to take up amateur ornithology. The website works by asking customers to state which birds they’d like to attract to their gardens, then creating a food mix to match. The site has wild bird mixes, seed & nuts, suet products and bird feeders, and was inspired by Simon’s two decades of experience birdwatching;

What’s On Events, Talks, Workshops...

“In the past 20 years we’ve both learned a lot about attracting more birds to gardens and we’ve been incredibly successful.” says Simon.

Unfortunately, these conditions also caused ‘sucking in’ of fresh vegetable crops from Italy, Spain, and beyond. This is of great concern as, in the future, the major buyers could continue to source their crops from these countries in future years.

“My garden in Lincolnshire is awash with birds. It’s all about getting the right bird food to the right bird - doing this reduces waste and can also reduce cost but definitely increases fun! JustAddBirds delivers the tools, resources and support to attract more birds to your garden.”

Sugar Beet was another crop seriously at risk during this cold spell. Those growers who had a considerable amount lifted earlier and had large stocks in ‘potato grave’ type heaps along the headlands were very concerned that the extra surface open to the freezing conditions would have higher levels of frost damage and possible rejection at the factory. Fortunately most were delivered in still a frosted condition and accepted at the factory. Those fields of sugar beet still to be lifted are still at serious risk and very careful lifting and immediate delivery will be necessary.

February in the Countryside...

5th February: Volunteer Work Day, Gibraltar Point Help to make Gibraltar Point better for all its visitors. Meet at Sykes Farm for 10am working to 12.30pm. Please bring suitable outdoor clothing, drinks etc with you. Volunteers may wish to bring lunch to eat on site. For details call 01754 89807.

14th February: The Highlands and Islands of Scotland Lincolnshire’s Geoff Trinder reports on wildlife he’s observed on one of his visits out of the County at Grimsby Town Hall. See for details.

23rd February: Steve Backshall’s Live and Wild Tour Based at Grimsby Auditorium, hugely popular TV wildlife presenter Steve Backshall brings his tour to Grimsby. Share fascinating facts and anecdotes about his worldwide adventures with wildlife. Accompanied by TV's Animal Mark and his selection of weird and wonderful animals, Steve will host an interactive presentation which is fun for all the family. Call 0844 847 2426 for details.

There is no doubt that extra winter wheat has been sown on the back of higher ‘forward’ prices and most growers will have sold a proportion of their crop for 2011 and 2012. It would seem prudent to do so, at least to cover their estimated costs. I was fortunate enough to receive as a Christmas present a book called ‘Farming in their Souls’ a history of Fenland farming written by South Lincolnshire Farmer, Rex Sly, a member of the family, well known for their rugby skills as well as their farming. In it, Rex mentions many well known Lincolnshire farming families and how their businesses have developed. Finally, during February most farmers will be involved in maintenance work on drainage, building and machinery. No doubt there will be the normal influx of pigeons on rape seed and other vegetable crops and these will need considerable attention. n

26th February: Explore Your DSLR The basics of nature photography, all explained in a day at Lincoln’s Whisby Nature Park. For SLR, micro system & bridge cameras, £75p/p. See for details.

Natural Lincolnshire: We’re promoting ecology, welfare & sustainability.

Read Barry’s Farming Matters column each month only in Lincolnshire Pride.

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This Little Piggy

This little piggy went to market. This little piggy stayed at home. This little piggy, however, enjoys living with a Lincolnshire family who has recently discovered how easy it is to add livestock to their smallholding. This month we investigate the pros and cons of adding livestock to your kitchen garden to produce your own home-reared meat... Words: Rob Davis.

MANY WITH LARGE GARDENS in Lincolnshire, with space set aside for a kitchen garden, delight in growing their own vegetables. This is often followed by keeping chickens and enjoying fresh eggs each morning,. But keeping livestock seems to be a gulf that few Lincolnshire smallholders are inclined to cross. Boston’s Jason James is hoping to change all that though, with a series of smallholder courses designed to help those seeking to reconnect with their food and with the countryside too. Next month, he’ll be hosting his first Introduction to Pigkeeping course, a practical and theoretical one-day crash course in the art of keeping pigs both for food and fun. “It was something we always wanted to do.” Says Jason who created his smallholding in 2008 and last year added pigs to his vegetable plot.

“It was difficult to make an informed decision as there were no experts on hand. We want to host a day when people can make an informed decision about keeping pigs. For those who already have a smallholding there’s usually an intention to progress to chickens, but keeping livestock is often considered a little too involved.” Jason’s courses began in September 2010, and have already included bee keeping, poultry keeping and a food safety course for smallholders. Debuting in March, however, is a course designed to provide those who would love to keep pigs with all of the information they need to make an informed decision as to whether they’ve the room, time and money to ensure their animals’ welfare. “The courses are a combination of practical tuition and theory.” says Jason. “It’s the course we

Above: Jason James is encouraging others to find out how rewarding keeping livestock like pigs can be...

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The family calculates that two

Kune Kune pigs will keep a family of five in pork for a year, with an animal going off to the butcher every six months. The breed grows to around 100 kilos... needed before we began to keep our animals.” Originally from Sussex, Jason spent a decade travelling around the UK, and his time included a posting at RAF Digby. He eventually returned to the county with wife Fiona with the intention of having a little land upon which they could grow their own food and upon which the couple’s children, Harry, Lucy and Charlie could play in safety. Help during the family’s acquisition of their curly-tailed chums came courtesy of neighbour Jasper Clark of Holme Farm Poultry. The family were a little more savvy than most and already knew that there is no such things as ‘micro-pigs’ the urbanised fashion accessories eccentric Hollywood stars think they can successfully domesticate. In fact, these breeds are inter-bred on the basis of their size but often grow to the full-size of any other pig. Pedigree breeds are, on the contrary, a better bet — and the dimensions to which they grow are rather more predictable. Domestic breeds can include the Middle White, Gloucester Old Spot, Berkshire and Welsh for those solely interested in meat, or more versatile breeds like the Kune Kune, adopted by Jason and family. The breed may look a little less pleasing than their pink counterparts, but in Jason and Jasper’s experience, darker breeds yield a tastier meat with an excellent marbling of fat. Kune Kune pigs also have excellent temperaments and will quickly warm to their owners. “They’re quite tame.” he says. “We have to remember that they’re being bred for meat, and try to stop ourselves becoming too attached to them. They’re not named — we just refer

to them as ‘big pig and ‘little pig’ — but we’re happy to give them a stroke when we feed them, and they’ll happily sit when told to, if you’ve an apple in your hand.” First things first then; to be legally compliant, it’s essential to to apply to DEFRA for a County Parish Holding number. Once registered, you can legally obtain livestock and will be assigned a Herd Number. Each of Jason’s pigs — multiple animals is recommended as pigs are sociable animals and tend to become lonely — cost less than £50. The family anticipates having five or six by next month. Next comes accommodation. Pig arks cost less than £200, and though 6m2x6m2 is enough per animal, more room is always desirable. A concrete base in the pen is serviceable, but pigs enjoy snuffling around, and prefer soft ground. “Weeded ground is especially ideal.” says Jason. “Pigs will voraciously clear grass, nettles or other foliage, and will fertilise the ground brilliantly.” In terms of food, Jason and family feed their pigs a cereal based pellet mix twice a day, purchased for around £8 in 20kg bags. Traditional wisdom says you can feed pigs kitchen scraps — they’d certainly eat them — but this is something DEFRA strictly

Get In Touch: Email your nature photographs, forthcoming events and news stories to or call 01529 46 99 77.

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prohibits. Any food that has passed through a shop or your kitchen may not be fed to pigs, though food grown on your grounds can. In terms of veterinary care, Jason has found his Kune Kunes to be reasonably resilient, but he does recommend having a reliable vet with knowledge and experience of pigs at your disposal.

but in terms of money, keeping pigs isn’t that expensive once you’ve established a smallholding setup. Whilst it’s no money saver, Jason and family argues that knowing how their food has been raised, and knowing exactly what their meat has been fed on is extremely important... they also value the education and respect for food it gives their children.

Whilst Jason and the family would describe having pigs as extremely rewarding, it’s important to remember that as smallholders you’re keeping them for meat.

“We believe the final product has more flavour.” says Jason. “We’re can be confident of our animals’ welfare and we know they’ve not been raised in a factory environment.”

Jason sends his animals off to slaughter once sufficiently fat. Many breeds are ready at 6-8 months, but Kune Kune pigs are slower growing and are at their best from 12-18 months of age, whereupon they weigh around 100 kilos. Jason calculates that his two Kune Kunes will keep a family of five in pork for six months, with one being sent to a local butcher every six months.

Keeping livestock isn’t for everyone, but for those with the time and space, it can be incredibly rewarding. Jason’s courses are unique in that they’ll provide would-be smallholders with the inspiration to return to a way of life that has been all but lost in the age of mass-produced food.

There’s certainly more labour involved in keeping pigs than popping to your local farm shop,

“There’s another benefit too.” reveals Jason. “Our animals produce the best crackling I’ve ever tasted for my Sunday roast... I can’t think of any greater incentive than that!” n

In the Countryside: Email farming and equine news to

Kune Kune piglets when new born — don’t be fooled by their cuteness though; they’ll grow to the size of stocky labradors!

Jason’s Introduction to Pigkeeping Course will be held at the family’s Leonard Cottage in Kirton Holme near Boston on 12th March — a similar course will run every other month thereafter. For further information visit

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A Winter of Discontent One of the most harsh and bitter winters for decades caused disruption for many Lincolnshire residents... but provided lots of inspiration for Lincolnshire photographers like Lincolnshire Pride’s Phil Nix, based in the Wolds... All images: Phil Nix.

The snow and ice was tempered by

beautiful blue skies, orange sunrises and undulating vistas of unspoilt white

blankets of snow — I’ve never known the Wolds so beautiful!


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Scenes of Lincolnshire

Photographer: Phil Nix. Camera: Pentax K7, 1/125sec, f/11, ISO200 at 30mm.


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Photographer: Phil Nix. Location: Saltfleet Haven. Camera: Pentax K7, 1/1000, f6.3. ISO200 at 240mm


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Scenes of Lincolnshire

These ice plates,

taken at Saltfleet Haven, created dramatic, jagged shards of brittle ice in layers — almost landscape!

like an alien


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Scenes of Lincolnshire

The Cathedral

looked great under a blanket of snow... looked a little chilly, though!

poor Tennyson

Left: Location: Lincoln Cathedral. Camera: Pentax K7, 1/100, F5, ISO100 at 21mm. Below: Location: South Ormsby’s 15th century St Leonard’s Church. Camera: Pentax K7, 1/13, f6.3, ISO400 at 18mm.

Above: North Willingham - The white ‘Golf Ball on a Tee’ is Claxby radar near Lincolnshire's highest point at 551ft above sea level. All photographs are by Phil Nix. Prints of images are available to purchase online by visiting



Are you an amateur or professional photographer? See your work in Lincolnshire Pride — email your themed shots to

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TXL 32G20 Was £699, Now ONLY



Your local Panasonic specialist

PETER RHODES 1 Oxford Street, Market Rasen 01673 842361 12 Mercer Row, Louth 01507 607325 77

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WBomen in

usiness 2011

Meet some of Lincolnshire’s most prominent businesswomen — this month, we distill the wisdom of the ladies ensuring Lincolnshire’s economic prosperity, and ask for their top business tips Words: Rob Davis

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“Relocating to Lincolnshire has been great — I believe in grabbing opportunities and making the most of them!

Sonja Mueller Manager of The Old Palace, Lincoln Minster Yard, Lincoln Tel: 01522 504075

The Old Palace is a conference centre and wedding venue, built by Bishop Edward King in the 1800s. Recently, refurbished, it’s Grade II listed and is built on medieval grounds, right next to the English Heritage Bishop’s Palace site and, of course, the Cathedral. The Old Palace has previously been used by the Diocese of Lincoln, but in April 2009, I was taken on to set it up as a venue that could be hired by the public and businesses for weddings and conferences and private dining as well. We have five function rooms, over three floors, the chapel named after St Hugh and 16 en-suite bedrooms including two suites, as well as beautiful grounds with stunning views over Lincoln. From Berlin to Lincoln Having previously worked in Berlin for Accor — one of largest hotel groups in Europe — and in Paris and the US, as well as several cities in Britain, I was really excited when I was told about the proposed refurbishment of the Old Palace. I was really lucky to be

able to set up from scratch the venue and still can’t believe how lucky I am when I come to work... it’s absolutely beautiful. Settling in Lincolnshire Lincolnshire is the only place I’ve ever felt I could settle. I live in a small village outside the city and work somewhere equally idyllic, and turning the venue from a blank canvas into one of the city’s most compelling conference and wedding venues has been a dream come true! The reaction to the building from brides-to-be and conference delegates has been amazing, so relocating to Lincolnshire has been wonderful both personally and professionally! My Words of Wisdom Above all, I believe in taking every opportunity and embarking on projects without fear — this has been a grand undertaking but very much worthwhile. It’s proof that if you try not to worry and grab opportunities when they arise, and aim for success, you can really achieve great things! n


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Women in Business

Emma Craven Owner of The Grange Spa, Pointon, Grantham Millthorpe Road, Pointon, Lincolnshire, NG34 0NF Tel: 01778 440511

The Grange Spa is a luxury boutique day spa. As a day spa, we’re unique in that we are small and family run without sacrificing the quality of our environment. We only take small numbers per day and so we are intimate and personal. We provide convenience by removing set structure; our half days have flexible start times making sparing more accessible. We have all of the charm of a family run business but with the finish of a five star corporate spa.

Next month we’ll be celebrating our second anniversary; we’ve put lots of hard work into the business so far...!

Our Dream Business I have been in the health and beauty industry for nine years and have always wanted to start my own business. Matt, my husband, and I knew we needed something to raise the bar offered by other salons and personal training studios.

We spent several years talking about what we would do which spilled out officially into three years of planning and searching for the correct venue for Lincolnshire’s first stand alone Day Spa that would provide half and full day experiences.


Over the past two years we have put in a lot of hard work and it is great to look back at everything that we have achieved so far; during our first year we were finalists at Local Authority East Midlands Building awards and during our second year we were finalists in Professional Beauty’s Day Spa of the year awards – being in the top 5 in the country alongside some of the industry’s giants was a great accomplishment. A Hard Working Year Ahead We are looking forward to another hard working year full of great achievements. Our future plans are to maintain and improve what we already have.

This year we have had two new members of staff join our team, enabling us to book more treatment time for our spa goers. We will be bringing in new systems by Spring that will benefit our loyal clients along with our great quarterly promotions. One thing that the business will always retain is the charm and personal friendly service that you would find in a small family run business.

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Claire Asher Owner of Asher Swimpools, Fulbeck Lincoln Road, Fulbeck, Lincolnshire, NG32 3JW Tel: 01400 272583 Asher Swimpool Centre is a family owned business, started in 1968 by our parents, John and Brenda Asher, who are now retired. We’ve over 40 years experience creating both liner and tiled pools as well as installing saunas and hot tubs. The business began in a very unique way back in 1968 when my parents dug a pool in their own back garden for my brother Andrew and myself to learn to swim. At the time our parents grew and sold rose bushes and ran a garden centre from our land. As customers visited, they would admire the pool and ask if my father would build them a swimming pool. Building and installing swimming pools is our main business in the private and commercial sector. This covers both indoor and outdoor pools, plus steam rooms, saunas and spas.

improved our showroom, our aim is now to ‘get our heads down’ for the season ahead with its fresh challenges. Juggling Work and Family Juggling work around a three year old is possibly the hardest challenge yet, but having a very supportive partner (Stephen) behind me, as well as our family, along with a hard-working team (known as the ‘A-Team’!) enables me to spend a day or two at a health spa from time to time relaxing and enjoying other people’s workmanship! My Words of Wisdom One thing I have come to learn in business is not to rush into any decision — rather, we think through each decision very carefully and if necessary ask others for their thoughts before making those all-important big decisions. n

Caring for Customers Once constructed, we offer a service and maintenance contracts which makes owning a pool a hassle-free and provides total enjoyment. Finding Time to Relax At the moment we are a young couple with a young business so needless to say we have to spend large amount of time at work.

They’re available to all, and are a real pleasure to own — plus, there are lots of added benefits to your health in owning and using a swimming pool. Having just enlarged our offices and

We regularly exercise, and spend valuable time with friends and family when we can. In our down time we like to spend time with our niece and nephew and often visit them in Norfolk at Caley Hall Hotel, another family business, which gives us a great escape. We were closed over Christmas and as a couple this is a great chance to enjoy some family time or take a short break. Normal holidays such as Valentines and Mother’s Day are very busy and we usually have some fantastic offers at these times and so it is a good idea to book early. My Words of Wisdom As a couple we have always lived to the full, remained focused and have achieved what we have set out to do without losing sight of what’s important. We are not solely money driven but motivated by a love of the people around us and the job that we do... we feel that’s really important in a business that’s all about relaxing and feeling good. n


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Women in Business

Georgina Harris Regional Finance Manager, Ramsay Healthcare Fitzwilliam Hospital, Milton Way, South Bretton, Peterborough PE3 9AQ Tel: 01733 261717

Ramsay Healthcare’s Fitzwilliam Hospital is a high quality, 46 bed hospital based in Peterborough, with 36 sites including two in Boston and Nottingham, providing quality care. We have over 120 consultants and can proudly boast Orthopaedic Centre of Excellence status, but also provide a full range of other healthcare services, for both day patients and inpatients.

Self-Pay and Insured patients enjoy en-suite private rooms, with their own patient ambassador, as well as à la carte dining and wi-fi access.

That’s in addition to the convenience of being able to plan your We offer treatment to cause the minimum of disruption to your unprecedented and working life and the care for both insured family provision of a named & self-pay and consultant to ensure the highest level of care possible. NHS patients

Many patients receive care via Women in Business alike... our provision for Self-Pay treatBoth myself as Regional Finance ment and with medical insurance. Manager and our Chief Executive Jill However, treatment at our modern, Watts understand the needs of women — comfortable and clean Peterborough based occupying senior positions within the group Fitzwilliam Hospital can also be obtained via ourselves — and we’ve an increasing number Patient Choice, allowing us to welcome NHS of female consultants. We also understand patients too. about juggling demanding careers, family life and fitting in treatment with the minimum of stress. That’s why we enable you to plan your treatment and recuperation, host 7.30am clinics and otherwise ensure your stay is as convenient as possible. My Words of Wisdom I think it’s important to never give up — certainly in business — and to always work hard. Both accountancy and the medical profession have always been male-dominanted industries, but we’re seeking to make medical care as accessible, and convenient with high quality care for all our patients; certainly for women with busy lives — which many of our patients are. I have a great husband in Simon, and two boys Jake, 12, and Josh, 15, so I also think it’s important to maintain a work/life balance. I’m currently in training for the London Marathon to raise £2,000 for the Stroke Association in support of a colleague. Keeping fit really does help to keep the mind focused. n

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s m a h a r G of


23-25 UPGATE, LOUTH LINCS LN11 9ER • TEL: (01507) 600530 85

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This month in

86 Fashion Shoot

Shot on location by Lincolnshire Pride at the Petwood Hotel, Woodhall Spa...

96 Accessories

Essential accessories to add the finishing touches to your romantic outfit...

103 The Wedding Album

This month, the dream wedding of Donna Smith and James Espin...

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Cindy’s Fashions Outfit: Cindy wears a Georgedé dress in crimson, £199 with black clutch-style diamanté evening bag, £19 and Topaz Glow jewellery; necklace, £19 and bracelet, £15. Further Details: Available from Cindy’s of Bridge Road, Sutton Bridge; 01406 350961, Our Shoot: Photographed by Lincolnshire Pride at the Petwood Hotel. For weddings, functions and dining call 01526 352411 or see

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Gracie’s Attic Outfit: Sanitta wears red drape evening dress by Religion, £90 with black diamanté clutch bag, £20, black crystal cuff bracelet, £8. Further Details: Available from Gracie’s Attic, 22 Dolphin Lane, Boston; 01205 310966. Our Shoot: Photographed by Lincolnshire Pride at the Petwood Hotel. For weddings, functions and dining call 01526 352411 or see


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Lottie’s Atik Outfit: Nikkita wears a pleated, brightly coloured Dave & Johnny occasion dress available in sizes 4-18, £185. Further Details: Available from Lottie’s Atik, 36, Steep Hill, Lincoln (above Angels and Imps); 01522 536035. Our Shoot: Photographed by Lincolnshire Pride at the Petwood Hotel. For weddings, functions and dining call 01526 352411 or see

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Lindsey James Outfit: Pat wears black dress with tassel trim, £345, red shoes by HB, £112 and red satin clutch bag with heart and diamanté trim, £28. Further Details: Available exclusively from Lindsey James, Heckington Fen; 01529 461175, www.lindsey Our Shoot: Photographed by Lincolnshire Pride at the Petwood Hotel. For weddings, functions and dining call 01526 352411 or see


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Gracie’s Attic Outfit: Hannah wears a black ruched evening dress £50, black bow crystal bracelet, £8, red & black necklace and earrings £10, £8 and red square cut glass evening bag, £20. Further Details: Available from Gracie’s Attic, 22 Dolphin Lane, Boston; 01205 310966.

Our Shoot: Photographed by Lincolnshire Pride at the Petwood Hotel. For weddings, functions and dining call 01526 352411 or see


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VALENTINE Beautiful accessories in red and black to really ‘glam up’ your Valentine’s Day outfit, all from local independent retailers... Words and Images: Rob Davis & Mandy Bray.

Red and black crystal earrings, £8 and necklace, £10 from Gracie’s Attic, Dolphin Lane, Boston, 01205 310966.

Above: Black velvet court shoes with diamanté heels and platforms, sizes 4-7, also in wine £55 from Lottie’s Attik, Step Hill, Lincoln 01522 536035. Right: Red Square Cut Glass Evening Bag, £20 and black diamanté evening bag from Gracie’s Attic. Left: Red and black shoes with ruched black trim by HB, £112 from Lindsey James, East Heckington, 01529 461175.

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Above: Topaz Glow necklace, £19 and bracelet, £15 from Cindy’s of Sutton Bridge. Left: Black crystal cuff bracelet, £18 from Gracie’s Attic.

Right: Heart and diamanté clutch bag in red satin, £8 from Lindsey James. Right: Black lace boots, £45, from Gracie’s Attic. Below: The sunglasses to be seen in; Dior frames and Mui Mui designer frames by the granddaughter of Prada — fun and stylish. Available from O’Brien’s Opticians, Wrawby Street, Brigg, 01652 653595

Cindy wears a Georgedé dress in crimson, £199 with black clutch-style diamanté evening bag £19, and Topaz Glow jewellery necklace £19 and bracelet £15. Available from Cindy’s of Sutton Bridge.

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Ringing T Changes he

An engagement ring is perhaps the most emotionally important purchase you’ll ever make... this month, Rachel Hollis explores the best way to make a perfect proposal... What is the most popular range or brand at the moment, or the one you think is the most unique? In view of the rising gold and platinum prices, silver jewellery continues to be a popular choice. Ti Sento, meaning ‘I feel you’ in Italian, is a sterling silver range of bold, romantic creations. Winner of Jewellery Brand of the Year 2010, their highest quality manufacturing ensures that each ring, bracelet, pendant or necklet is precision set with stones in dazzling and vibrant colours. What’s the most important thing to remember when choosing a piece of jewellery? When choosing a piece of jewellery, it is important not to rush, as it is an emotional purchase that will last a long time. The price may seem an important consideration at the time of purchase, but in years to come, the price will be forgotten, overtaken by the enjoyment of wearing the piece. Tell us about your shop and its ranges... As an independent family business spanning three generations, jewellery has always been a large part of our lives. It is a pleasure to work with such luxurious and beautiful items and to be part of the often emotional and always happy experience that customers enjoy when choosing and purchasing our jewellery. n S.T. Hopper is based at 49 Market Place Boston or call 01205 362087.

Naturally a proposal should be romantic — the time, the place, the words — and whilst your choice of ring constitutes a rather more materialistic element to your proposal, a luxurious, well-chosen engagement ring is something of which no woman should be deprived! Indicating a woman’s intention to be married, an engagement ring is a lasting investment, which will be cherished and admired for a lifetime. Whilst the style and appearance of the ring is paramount, the practicalities are also important — it must be hard wearing, well fitting, and of the best quality. Although tradition tells that a man should pick out and purchase a ring to present to his bride-to-be upon his proposal, many gentlemen now prefer to make sure that their fiancé approves of their choice, and the engagement is sealed with a ring after the proposal so that they can choose the ring together.

If the cuts are either too shallow, or too deep, the sparkle of the diamond will be affected. The cut also dictates the shape of the diamond — the most common shape is a round cut, although other shapes to consider are the emerald, the pear, the marquise, the princess, the oval, and the heart. The Four Cs: Carat A diamond’s weight is measured in carats. One carat equates to 0.2 grams. The stone’s carat is also thought to be one of the most important ways to judge a diamond. Larger diamonds are more rare, and thus inevitably more expensive. Bear in mind that the shape and cut of a diamond can make stones of similar weights look very different.

For the ultimate romantic gesture, ask your Lincolnshire jeweller The Four Cs: Colour to purchase a diamond A diamond’s colour is graded using letters D-Z. and create a bespoke The rarest and most valuable colour is white — engagement that is to say colourless to the ring... human eye.

Consider the four C’s if you’re struggling for inspiration on where to start when buying an engagement ring: The Four Cs: Cut According to Tiffany and Co, the cut is the defining characteristic of a diamond. This determines the sparkle of the stone — a well cut diamond will shine vividly. When a diamond is cut, the facets (or tiny planes cut on the diamond’s surface) are angled and sized to determine how the light reflects off it.

Less in demand are the stones with a faint yellow tint, which are generally graded between K and Z. The Four Cs: Clarity This is how pure the diamond is. Inclusions are usually invisible to the human eye, but they are also defined on a grading scale. SI1 — Slightly Included 1 — is the norm, but the best and most expensive is IF; Internally Flawless. The lowest clarity is I3, or Imperfect 3.

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RANGES BEAUTIFUL ENGAGEMENT RINGS FROM INDEPENDENT JEWELLERS ACROSS LINCOLNSHIRE... Right: Platinum engagement rings, £3,200, £2,950 and £1,500. From Moore & Scrupps, Sleaford, Bourne and Newark; 01529 302674. Right: 18ct gold 0.8ct diamond solitaire ring, £1,250 from Navenby Antiques Centre; 01522 811 271. Below: Single stone diamond ring with shoulder setting £2,785 (STH31127) and Sapphire & diamond three stone ring £3,790 (STH34446) from S. T. Hopper, Boston; 01205 362087.

Above: The perfect proposal necessitates a beautiful ring.

Always use an independent, local jeweller and, should you have a specific idea for your design of ring, consider asking your jeweller to source and create a bespoke piece. Finally, ask your jeweller about their policy of using ethically-sourced diamonds — you really don’t want your proposal to financially advantage rogue governments or an errant militia group — Sierra Leone, for example is just such a hotspot. Whichever ring you choose, bear the basics in mind. Make sure that it fits perfectly, that it is high-quality, and that it suits the recipient’s taste and style. With all those factors considered — all you have to worry about is making a sparkling proposal! n

Below: 18ct diamond solitaire, 1.00ct with claw set in white gold. £3,200. 18ct white gold diamond cluster ring with diamond set shoulder £1,750. 18ct three stone diamond ring with centre marquise stone with brilliant cuts either side, 1.68ct £6,000. From Maude’s the Jewellers, West Street, Boston; 01205 367959.

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A Unique Venue for Your

Perfect Wedding Day

The most impor tant day in your life deser ves a unique and special location. In the hear t of the city, located in Lincoln’s historic quar ter, The Old Palace is the perfect setting for your special day.

• Exclusive hire possible • Red carpet reception • Wedding par ty from 20 to 100 guests • Five function rooms

• Bespoke menus • Evening buffet for up to 150 guests • Free car park • 16 luxur y bedrooms

The obvious choice for those who desire sophisticated surroundings combined with excellent ser vice for a truly memorable day.

M i n s t e r Ya r d Lincoln LN2 1PU Telephone: 01522 504075 www.theoldpalace .org 102

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Wedding Album The

of Donna Smith and James Espin

This month’s bride enjoyed a surprise proposition left on her windscreen, and very nearly found herself with an unusual car on her wedding day... still, the wheels were set in motion for a very happy marriage indeed! Images: Reg Moore; 07866 533220,


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i Bride’s Name: Donna Smith. Groom’s Name: James Espin. Ceremony held at: St Nicholas’s Church, Newport, Lincoln. Reception held at: The Old Palace, Lincoln. Best Men: Ben Ryan & Edward Marriott. Bridesmaids: Hannah Bradley, Nina Marshall & Diana Lawrence. Bride’s Parent: Anne Smith. Groom’s Parent: Christon Espin.

When/how did you first meet? Bride’s View: We first met on a night out in town. I remember thinking he looked familiar and thought he was good looking. It was only once we started talking that he said he lived opposite my Mum and I realised where I recognised his face from. On an evening visit to my Mum I went to get into my car and saw a rose with his number left on my car… I rang and it all started from there! When in the relationship did he ‘pop the question?’ How did he propose? James proposed in 2008 on a holiday to Cyprus. I was seven months pregnant at the time. James had planned the last night to be really romantic — a nice stroll on the beach with the sunset behind us — but it happened to be the only night which was overcast! He tried later on after a meal by suggesting another stroll down a beach near our apartment but I was cold and so wanted to go back and get my jacket… James went off in a huff as he felt I had ruined his plan! I went back to our apartment and was getting ready for bed when there was a knock on the door and James on one knee… I was ecstatic! What were the first things you decided upon? Our wedding planning began when I found my perfect dress — the most important element! We knew we wanted a church service and as the local parish church is only a mile from home it was quickly decided upon as the venue for the ceremony. We then had a


look at a few venues but decided on a beautiful building next to the Cathedral called The Old Palace. It was everything we could have hoped for; and had only just reopened following a full renovation, so we were one of the first couples to use it! Any differing ideas about how your big day should be? The only area in which we differed was my desire to have a videographer; James didn’t see the point. I decided on it close to the wedding and I have to say we were both pleased we had one, as it was so nice to see the moments you missed or forgot on the day. Was planning your big day fraught or enjoyable? Did you both contribute ideas with equal enthusiasm? Both; it became fraught at times but overall it was enjoyable to see it all coming together. We contributed in different areas — James’s main areas of contribution were the venue, photographer and the invitations as we designed and made. I dealt with the rest! How did it feel to walk down the aisle and take your vows? I felt so emotional but it was so nice to see James, my family and friends all smiling at me as I walked down the aisle. I was emotional on many occasions throughout the ceremony. At one point I didn’t think I would be able to finish my vows. The Vicar was great and brought unexpected humour to the ceremony.

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Who did you choose for attendants and why? Bride’s View: I had three bridesmaids; Diana, Hannah and Nina. Diana I have known since we were 16 and at college together; Hannah and Nina I met at work. All three have been such great friends, I have shared so much in my life with these girls. I couldn’t think of anyone better to help me with my special day. Groom’s View: I actually had two best men, Ben & Eddie. I do not have a ‘best friend’ as such and generally see both of them together. They are both such good friends that I could never choose between them. I figured that between them they could carry each other through the day and it would split the responsibility... as it was, Ben carried Eddie through the day as Eddie flew round like a headless chicken! What made you choose your dress, and can you describe it? As soon as I put my dress on I knew it was the one; I loved it and felt amazing in it. It was strapless with a panel of lace that ran

across the bust. It was corset style at the top with beading on it. The bottom had a lot of fullness which had lace over the top and beading with a nice train. It had a lace choker for the neck in the same material. Where was your reception held? The reception was held at The Old Palace in Lincoln. This was the former Old Bishop’s Palace and is situated next to the Cathedral. It has stunning views overlooking both Lincoln and the Cathedral, which made it a fabulous venue. It’s a Georgian building with all the old character kept. As it had been recently refurbished, the décor was new and the building looked fresh. Did you have a honeymoon? If so where, and most importantly, did you enjoy it? We were married on the Saturday and flew to Mauritius on the Monday. James’s mum had agreed to have our son for the week so we got a chance to begin married life being waited on hand and foot and were able to focus purely on ourselves! The place was fantastic, the weather perfect and the

Our reception was held at

the Old Palace in Lincoln — recently refurbished, we were one of the first couples to marry at the venue...!

Images: Reg Moore; 07866 533220,


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We didn’t think it would feel

very different, but it’s so nice to be able to refer to Donna as ‘my wife’ rather than the more awkward ‘my partner’...!

service as good as we have ever experienced. We agreed that we were both looking forward to seeing our son Jaydon and that our next holiday would be a family one! Who would you particularly recommend? We would definitely recommend The Old Palace as an ideal venue for those looking for the perfect setting for their wedding reception. Alex — the wedding coordinator — was exceptionally well organised and made the process as straightforward and hasslefree as possible. The building and grounds are like nothing else in the Lincoln area. Our photographer Reg Moore deserves his praise too… from our first meeting to the presentation of our final album, he was eager to ensure our day ran perfectly and our album met our highest expectations. James did not want the traditional wedding photos so often seen, nor did he want our guests standing around for hours whilst numerous formal shots were taken. Reg ensured that the majority of the photos were of a contemporary nature, capturing the natural events of our dream day.

Images: Reg Moore; 07866 533220,


Our florist Flowers by Design in Nettleham were excellent and we were so pleased with the quality and decoration. Pauline from Magic Moments Weddings provided us with the chair covers and sashes which looked

extremely elegant and she also made an amazing arrangement for the centrepieces. Belle & Bouquet of Wellingore supplied my wedding dress; they were professional and helpful and assisted me in choosing the perfect dress. Finally, QL Discos provided us good entertainment and were happy to assist with any of our requirements. How are you finding married life? Groom’s View: I must be honest and say that I didn’t think it would feel very different. As with many couples today, we ‘lived in sin’ for four years so married life seems a continuation rather than a revelation! That said, I can now enjoy calling her my wife rather than the more awkward ‘partner’! n

i And Finally… Do you have any top tips that you can give for future brides? Bridal shows were excellent for gathering information on different services. We made our invitations, table plan and orders of service. It cost a lot less than it would have done to buy them; the only thing is... it takes more time to prepare them!

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Weddings at The Lincoln Hotel Some days in your life are special... none more so than your wedding day!


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Ann Theil and Graham Riddell were recently married and enjoyed a reception at The White Hart Hotel, Lincoln. Photographer: Reg Moore Tel: 01507 609477.

Dan and Rachael Todd were recently married at All Saints Church, North Hykeham. A reception at Ruston Sports Club and honeymoon in Salou followed. Photographer: Dianne Pyper

Kevin Storm and Hailey Hewison recently married at St Mary’s Church, Skegness. A marquee reception at the bride’s home and a honeymoon to the Seychelles followed.

James and Amy Burgess recently married at Tattershall Church. A reception followed at RAF Coningsby.

Photographer: Micheal Fagan, Skegness;, 01754 769090.

Photographer: Aurora Studio, Market Rasen; 01673 844519,

Congratulations to all couples marrying in the county this month - to have your wedding featured here, e-mail or ask your photographer to contact us directly on 01529 469977.


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Richard Bestwick and Alexandra Plaskitt were recently married at Woodhall Spa’s Petwood Hotel. The couple enjoyed a honeymoon to Florida.

Kelly and Mark Ward were recently married at St Deny’s Church, Sleaford. A wedding reception at Branston Hall Hotel followed.

Photographer: Conners, Louth; 01507 602562,

Photographer: Aurora Studio, Market Rasen; 01673 844519,

Ian Bullock and Rachel Ellis were recently married at The Church of St Andrew & St Mary, Stoke Rochford. A reception at Stoke Rockford Hall and honeymoon to Tanzania and the Seychelles followed.

Lee McEvoy and Lindsey Mercer recently married at St Andrew’s Church, Heckington. A reception at Ancaster’s Woodland Waters and honeymoon to Tenerife followed.

Photographer: Sam Hook, Purelight Photography, Newark; 01636 673 800,

Photographer: Jennie Wilson Photography, Butterwick; 01205 760729,


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Class Travel Three executives, but just one position available. This month we take three executive candidates — the new Mercedes E-Class, new BMW 5-Series and Jaguar’s recently updated class leader, the XF — into our board room — where two of them will get fired! Words: Rob Davis COMFORTABLE AND SMOOTH, executive saloons have always been, but today’s businesspeople also demand cars that can double up as sports cars too. There are larger cars than those featured here — the Mercedes E-Class, Jaguar XF and BMW 5-Series have larger siblings in the S-Class, XJ and 7-Series respectively. However, these circa £35,000 saloons sell in much greater volumes, and whilst their larger siblings boast a few more bells & whistles and larger engines, for most people, the three models featured here provide as much standard equipment, just as much on-road presence and caché, and, crucially, are much more economical.

Each model has leather, climate and cruise control and an iPod connection. The Jaguar is better equipped though, with standard sat-nav and full electric seat adjustment. Value for Money The BMW looks good value here — but misses out on sat-nav and a few other extras. Crucially, it will drive better than its rivals, but only when specified with optional Active Steering and Adaptive Drive, which adds £3,500 to the bill. Driving Experience Each of these models are perfect for wafting up a motorway. The BMW offers the sportiest drive and best feel, but the Jaguar offers the best combination of executive saloon and sports car.

Interior Style All three models should cosset, and build quality in each is impeccable. The Mercedes’s interior is the roomiest, but it does suffer from a cluttered dash. The Jaguar’s interior is certainly contemporary, with stylish touches like the rotary gear know which rises into your hand when its starter button is pressed, but the BMW offers a rock-solid, ergonomic very ‘German’ interior, that’s very well-made! Performance The Mercedes proves the most economical cruiser, whilst the Jaguar has the most pace — and a great chassis to channel all of that power. I

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New Registration Plate

Motoring Special

Mercedes E-Class 250CDi 2.1 Avant Garde


For: Great economy, neat looking. Against: A little conservative, cluttered dash.

2.1V4 BlueEfficiency Diesel: Top Speed: 149mph. 0-60mph: 7.8 seconds. Economy: 40.9mpg urban, 64.2mpg extra urban, 53.3mpg combined. Standard Equipment: Electric front & rear windows and mirrors, touch screen, heated leather seats with part electric adjustment, rear parking sensors, Bluetooth, climate control, cruise control. Optional Extras: ‘Distronic’ adaptive cruise, ‘Linguatronic’ sat-nav with voice control.

Jaguar XF 3.0V6 Luxury Diesel


For: Contemporary interior, best equipped. Against: Most expensive here.


Our Verdict Best for Luxury: Smooth, quiet drive and composure make BMW a winner here. Brand caché commands respect.

3.0V6 Diesel, 24v: Top Speed: 149mph. 0-60mph: 6.7 seconds. Economy: 30mpg urban, 51.3mpg extra urban, 42mpg combined. Standard Equipment: Electric windows, mirrors, electric steering column adjustment and electric leather seats. Cruise and climate control, sat-nav, Bluetooth, colour touch screen. Optional Extras: Heated seats and windscreen, CD changer, Dynamic body styling pack.

BMW 5-Series 525D SE


For: Excellent build quality & feel. Against: Needs optional extras for best handling.

Best for Drivers: Jaguar offers nimble chassis and great handing. 3.0V6 is potent, but still returns more than 40mpg. Best for Value: Mercedes is most economical — the only four cylinder model here — BMW needs several optional extras to match rivals. Best Overall: All three models are excellent in terms of quality and driver experience. To some degree the decision will be subjective but we favour the Jaguar... as does What Car? magazine, which awarded the XF the title Car of the Year in 2008, 2009 and 2010!

3.0V6 Diesel, 24v: Top Speed: 147mph. 0-60mph: 7.2 seconds. Economy: 36.2mpg urban, 55.4mpg extra urban, 46.3mpg combined. Standard Equipment: Electric front and rear windows, CD player with iPod input, colour display, Bluetooth, leather seats with part electric adjustment, parking sensors. Optional Extras: Heated seats, sat-nav, TV, CD changer.

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For Families BMW has just released a new X3 small 4x4 model that’s great for family life and light-duty off-roading. Here, it faces the class-leading Audi Q5 and its greatest threat, the forthcoming Range Rover Evoque, available for pre-order this Spring... Words: Rob Davis A RANGE ROVER, for everyone! The brand’s new Evoque launches next year, with orders being taken in Spring 2011 and delivery expected from August. It’s an important model since it represents a sea-change for the brand — more affordable, more economical and available without four wheel drive. Evoque will face some tough competition; Audi’s Q5 is a class-leading model with four wheel drive & generous standard equipment and BMW’s brand new X3, which is faster, more economical, better equipped and cheaper than the previous model, which never experienced the same success as the larger X5.


On the Road Audi’s Q5 is spacious and has a great interior, and its impeccable manners continue on-road too — the ride is firm, the car is certainly not designed for serious offroading, but it’s civilised and well-equipped. The BMW has an impressive ride and superb handling but opt for the automatic gearbox, which will also reward with better economy. Evoque will feature Magnetic Ride, which promises a great blend between sporty handling and ride comfort. BMW’s new X3 is extremely well-equipped, and great value for money. It’s the most economical and has a superb quality interior.

Not all details have been confirmed regarding the Evoque as yet. However, its price point will be from £30,000-£40,000, putting it on a par with forthcoming X3 M-Sport models and Audi’s 3.0TDi Q5. Whilst none of these models are suitable for off-roading, Evoque will have coil-sprung suspension and Terrain Response meaning that, for those seeking to tow or partake in light off-roading duties, the Range Rover model is likely to better both the BMW and Audi off-road. A two-wheel drive Evoque will be available from launch, and the model will also launch as a three door coupé, with the five door variant to follow. I

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New Registration Plate

Motoring Special

BMW X3 xDrive 20D Auto


For: Great value, blend of performance and economy. Against: Limited off-road.

2.0V4 16v Diesel: Top Speed: 130mph. 0-60mph: 8.5 seconds. Economy: 46.3mpg urban, 53.3mpg extra urban, 50.4mpg combined. Standard Equipment: Electric front & rear windows and mirrors, leather seats, climate and cruise control, CD player with colour screen, parking sensors. Optional Extras: Sat-nav, TV, heated seats, reversing camera, electric seats.

Audi Q5 2.0 SE


For: Car-like driving dynamics, quality interior. Against: Most expensive here.

2.0TDi (143ps), 16v: Top Speed: 118mph. 0-60mph: 11.4 seconds. Economy: 39.2mpg urban, 50.4mpg extra urban, 45.6mpg combined. Standard Equipment: Electric windows, mirrors. Leather upholstery, front and rear climate control. Parking sensors. Optional Extras: Bang & Olufsen stereo, sat-nav, (adaptive) cruise control, automatic parking system.

i Our Verdict Best for On-Road Manners: BMW’s refinement, composure and handling makes it an easy recommendation for those seeking a road-biased 4x4.

Range Rover Evoque Prestige, 5-door

TBC; circa £30,000

For: Three and five door, badge prestige. Against: Many details not yet confirmed.

Best for Off-Road: The stylish Evoque is likely to have the best off-road capabilities with full-time 4x4 (where specified), Terrain Response and Freelander-esque coil springs, which are more suited to axle travel than air suspension. Best Overall: It’s difficult to wholeheartedly recommend the Evoque given that not all information has been confirmed about its final specification. For now, BMW’s X3 is extremely refined and great value with great options available.

2.0 Si4: Top Speed: c.140mph. 0-60mph: 7.1 seconds. Economy: TBC, c.50mpg. Standard Equipment: Full details yet to be confirmed. Trim levels will be Pure, Prestige and Dynamic. Leather and sat-nav will come as standard, options will include panoramic sunroof, reversing camera with surround camera system, heated seats, windscreen and steering wheel.

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But Perfectly Formed For anyone seeking a premium small car with a good blend of economy, performance and standard equipment choosing a supermini just became trickier. Here, we test three of the smallest, but most perfectly formed cars — which provide lots of luxury in a compact package... Words: Rob Davis SMALL IS BEAUTIFUL. That’s the message from premium car manufacturers like BMW, Mini and Audi, whose premium superminis provide all the luxury and build quality favoured by customers of their larger models, but in a smaller package.

The BMW may be the most expensive model by a significant margin, with a much larger engine, but with similar space and equipment. It is, however, faster and available with five doors making it a versatile choice.

More modestly proportioned cars are being sought by consumers wanting vehicles that are easier to park, more economical and cost less to tax. Such customer don’t expect manufacturers to scrimp on standard equipment, refinement of ride quality.

Value for Money Whilst the Mini has always proved popular, the newest model here, Audi’s A1, trumps it in terms of having a much smaller engine — 1.2 rather than 1.6 — and achieving greater fuel economy. If you opt for the diesel A1, the savings are even greater.

So, whilst each of these featured models are modestly proportioned, they’re great to drive, luxurious, and a cinch to park and run.

The Mini holds its value brilliantly, and with its premium badge, the Audi is likely to do the same.


Ride and Handling The Mini has always proved the most ‘fun’ to drive, despite the BMW’s overall refinement. However, with its slightly softer ride and ability to soak up potholes well, the A1 comes out on top for the best overall ride. Luxury All of the cars here feature the ‘basics’ as standard; power steering, electric windows, central locking, power steering, CD player with iPod socket. Each can be highly specified with lots of ‘big car’ features like leather and satnav, but you’ll have to spend thousands to do so. In terms of cabin space, the Mini boasts lots of room up front, but only two rear seats. The BMW boasts the largest boot. I

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New Registration Plate

Motoring Special

BMW 1-Series 116ES


For: Handling, speed. Against: Expensive next to rivals, no smaller engines.

2.0 16v V4: Top Speed: 127mph. 0-60mph: 9.8 seconds. Economy: 35.8mpg urban, 55.4mpg extra urban, 46.3mpg combined. Standard Equipment: Electric front windows and mirrors, CD player, air conditioning. Optional Extras: Leather seats, cruise control, parking sensors, electrically adjustable and heated seats, CD changer, sat-nav, Bluetooth.

Audi A1 1.2TFSi SE


For: Premium quality and refinement. Against: Small boot, poor rear headroom.

1.2TFSi, 16v, V4: Top Speed: 112mph. 0-60mph: 11.7 seconds. Economy: 45.6mpg urban, 64.2mpg extra urban, 55.4mpg combined. Standard Equipment: Electric windows, mirrors. Bluetooth, air conditioning, CD player, colour screen. Optional Extras: BOSE stereo, leather seats, sat-nav, heated seats, body coloured styling.

i Our Verdict Best for Passengers: BMW and The A1 have the best overall distribution of room. The Mini only features two rear seats. Best for Drivers: It’s Mini all the way for a bouncy chassis that offers sports car handling for small car money. Best Value for Money: Discount the highly priced BMW and you’re left with the A1 and the Mini, which is somewhat of a head versus heart decision. The A1 is precisely what a premium supermini should be; brand prestige and quality distilled into a smaller body shell. Whilst the Mini is fun, the A1’s economy and tiny engine size should make it the best overall choice in terms of value.

Mini One


For: Cheeky retro style and handling. Against: Some awkward interior controls.

1.6 16v V4: Top Speed: 116mph. 0-60mph: 10.5 seconds. Economy: 39.2mpg urban, 64.2mpg extra urban, 52.3mpg combined. Standard Equipment: Electric front windows, central locking, CD player and iPod socket, power steering. Optional Extras: Leather seats, sat-nav, Bluetooth, parking sensors, cruise and climate controls.

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High Society

Help for Heroes Viennese Concert A major, county wide fund raising Viennese Concert and lunch at the Lincolnshire Showground was recently held. It was attended by 800 who enjoyed Waltzes performed by the Lincoln Symphony Orchestra and leading solo artist Caroline MacPhie...


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We have limited space in the magazine for all of our images... so click on to see all of the pictures from our events. Photographs are available to purchase quickly and easily!


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High Society

Help for Heroes


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High Society

Armed Forces Cadet's Ball Over 60 attendees from across Lincolnshire recently joined in the celebrations as the county's Armed Forces invited its cadet instructors and organisers to enjoy a ball celebrating the achievements of young people working towards a career in the forces...


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High Society

FESA Annual Fundraising Ball Lincolnshire importers of citrus fruits, Fesa recently held its annual fundraising ball for local charities at Springfields Exhibition Centre near Spalding...


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High Society

Young Farmers Jingle Ball A pre-Christmas bash was enjoyed by Lincolnshire Young Farmers at Stanhope Hall, near Horncastle...


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We Know Her So Well — Barbara Dickson OBE One of the most familiar faces in musical theatre and a superb folk music artist recognised for her contribution in 2002 with an OBE. This month, Louth’s Barbara Dickson releases her new album Words Unspoken, embarks on her new tour and co-hosts the BBC Folk Awards... in between finding time to speak to Lincolnshire’s High Society Magazine...

~ I put 100% into my live performances, the joy of playing live is really incredible!


How did a Scottish born singer come to settle in Lincolnshire? I was born in Fife, and spent my teenage years in Edinburgh. At 25, my manager Bernard Theobald recommended a move to Lincolnshire, with its good standard of living and good transport links both north and south. I lived in Navenby for a short while from 1973 before working in Liverpool and before spending 20 years in London. I missed Lincolnshire and moved back to the county in 1994, living in the Wolds before moving to Louth. It’s rather a busy month for you, isn’t it? It certainly is! My new album of fresh material, Words Unspoken, will launch on January 31st. In addition, I begin a 26 date tour on February 11th. This will include diverse venues from Glasgow’s Royal Concert Hall with around 1,800 people to smaller more specialised venues such as the late John Dankworth and Cleo Laine’s Stables venue in Milton Keynes. I’m also co-hosting the BBC Folk Awards with Mike Harding and will perform a special live set for BBC Radio Two on Mike’s show on February 9th. Which is your favourite area of Lincolnshire, and why? I really do enjoy spending time in Louth. It’s a quiet, private town and in particular I enjoy spending time at home. If we have visitors, I always take them to Lincolnshire’s coastline too; I think it’s beautiful. What are you most vehemently held likes and dislikes? I’m a keen reader and spend January — which is my relatively quiet month that precedes a month of touring — in front of an open fire with a good book; I loathe bad weather! Also, I don’t particularly like celebrity culture, I think I have quite a serious attitude to music. I’m quite a private person at home, but when I’m working, I put my all into my music. Name your favourite books, films, and music? I watch quite a bit of television now I’m not tied to schedules, having brought a digital recorder box. I do enjoy reading, especially when travelling on tour. In particular I l love the novels of CJ Samsom, whose novels follow a hunchbacked Tudor lawyer, Matthew Shardlake. I also enjoy the novels of Stirlingshire author James Robertson. In terms of music I’m quite catholic in my taste, but the song I keep singing around the house at the moment is from my Words Unspoken album, The Magical West, about a holiday we enjoyed in Ireland, and more broadly about the Western Isles themselves. What will your epitaph read? I’d like to think it will read ‘She did her best.’ I put 100% into live performances — the joy of playing live is really incredible.

Image: Brian Aris.

Finally… tell us something good! I think it’s important to try to live in the present, rather than looking back or looking to the future. n Barbara’s album, Words Unspoken, is released on January 21st, featuring 12 brand new tracks. Her tour begins on February 11th — for venues and dates, and for album availability see

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