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So Hard



Anita Dobson on being Miss Hannigan

Sexy Back Stay hot on cold nights



We have breakfast with Rebecca Adlington



Pure luxury at the heart of the giant 3 valleys

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CARL CHRISTOPHER Congleton | 01260 281192 JOHN PASS JEWELLERS Crewe | HENRY D JOHNSTONE Poynton | 01625 872470 HOMEBIRD INTERIORS Altrincham | 0161 928 5933 Cheadle Hulme | 0161 485 4461 Heswall | 0151 342 3670 MOCOCO Chester | 01244 312043 Mold | 01352 700456 Ruthin | 01824 705998 Wrexham | 01978 280045 Birkenhead | 0151 6477370 Liverpool | 0151 2550388 Warrington | 01925 639055 NEIL & BARKER JEWELLERS Widnes | 0151 4243343

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hat better way to start the year than a flurry of snow, a touch of romance and a dusting of pure luxury. With Valentines just around the corner, we continue our ‘winter weddings’ feature (p.47) looking at the next steps, from venues and props to the finest purveyors of cake, we immerse ourselves in wintery wedding wonderfulness. We visit Meribel for a week of indulgence on the slopes (p.81) at the resort in the heart of the giant 3 valleys. From the cool slopes of Morzine to the blistering sand dunes, blue sea and sky of Abu Dhabi (p.85), we kick back and relax with a luxury city break, and although it’s bitterly cold outside, we keep the fire burning, with some of the hottest pyjamas around (p.59), but dare you continue the trend of donning them outdoors? Natalie Anglesey has breakfast with Swim Star, Rebecca Adlington (p.30) about life after the Olympics and the challenges next on her agenda. Anita Dobson (p.25), Annie the musical’s latest villain shares with us what it takes

to play intoxicated Miss Hannigan. Our resident petrolhead James Fossdyke takes the latest French SUV, the DS7 Crossback out for a spin (p.72), does it cut the mustard? From France to Italy, Stuart McLachlan, the resident mixologist at 20 Stories shares with us his favourite cocktail recipe (p.105), ‘My Little Italy’. Our Home & Garden news is full of the latest trends, including the latest Pantone colour ‘hot coral’ (p.126) to a paired back design ethic by Lucy Goddard (p.132) from NoChintz in Manchester.

Scott Illingworth-Harrison Publisher



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30 Swim Star

We have breakfast with Rebecca Adlington to chat about life after the Olympics and the challenges next on her agenda


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Vida Forever

Craig Hough meets Rachel Vida MacLynn the Founder and CEO of Vida Consultancy to discuss all things dating and plans to bring their events to the North

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008 | Publisher’s letter 010 | Contributors 014 | My life in Cheshire Stuart Wilson, CEO of Blue Bay Travel shares his life in Cheshire with us

114 | Work of Art We discover what takes a hard-working Rector’s wife into the boardrooms and workplaces from Manchester to Madrid

017 | Notebook Get smitten with snow drops this winter, your essential guide to the finest things to do in the North West, dates for the diary and a healthy dose of art and culture

DRIVE 071 | News Behind the wheel of the latest luxury motors, from classic cars to the fastest four wheelers; whether it sail, fly, ride or drive

041 | Jewellery & Watches From exquisite engagement rings or the latest jewellery trends, explore our sparkling 074 | Ooh, la la! array of diamonds, gemstones If you’re bored of and ticking treasures Germany’s dull-butworthy SUV offerings, 045 | To Have and to Hold should France be your You essential guide to next port of call, James selecting wedding suppliers Fossdyke suggests why through the memories of real couples TRAVEL

STYLE 057 | Fashion Sartorial indulgence for men and women, from shopping and style inspiration to exclusive interviews, fashion shoots and the latest news, spotlighting the finest boutiques in the North West 066 | Health, Beauty & Wellness We review some of the best beauty products, treatments and fragrances

079 | Travel news The finest hotels and travel inspiration from UK retreats and European city breaks to far-flung tropical beaches 087 | Abu Dhabi Kat Hannon exchanges the dull skies of Cheshire for a luxury break in the capital of the Arab states 090 | Grand Resort Bad Ragaz Sampling the healing thermal waters at a Swiss wellness escape

87 092 | Destination Liverpool Kathryn Otto explores Liverpool to see why it is one of the UK’s most visited cities

FOOD & DRINK 097 | Food & drink news We explore fine dining restaurants, new menus, chef interviews, gourmet food and drink news 100 | Sweet Success Natalie Anglesey chats with twins Helen & Lisa Tse about the inspirational story of this rags to riches journey 102 | Spotlight On... Barristers Restaurant, The Courthouse Barristers Restaurant, The Courthouse. We review one of the newest eateries to arrive in the market town of Knutsford 104 | Meet the Mixologist Stuart McLachlan, the resident mixologist at 20 Stories shares with us his favourite cocktail recipe ‘My Little Italy’ 107 | Local Scene Our social pages this month are filled with fizz, fun, fundraising and a whole lot of fashion from the region’s events

117 | Family news From toys to tempting interiors, design is for all the family 121 | Classroom Updates from some of the county’s best educational institutions

HOME & INTERIORS 125 | Homes & Garden news Enjoy a luxury edit of the finest homeware and design objects and pick up expert tips on creating your dream home 132 | Life in Design We meet Lucy Goddard one of the Creative Directors from NoChintz in Manchester


137 | The Edit Seal it with love, give a nod to Valentine’s Day with these pieces for your home 147 | Property Through the keyhole of the finest addresses in the North West. Find palatial properties, interior inspiration and exclusive interviews 159 | Finishing Touch This new made-to-measure marble wallpaper mural by GCC Artworks stands out from the crowd

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My life in


How would you describe yourself ? A family man, with four children, six dogs, 20+ alpacas, 100+ colleagues with the best job in the world. Always busy with a zest for the outdoors. Where is home? And work? Home is a barn conversion we’ve lovingly modernised, taking care to respect the original character on a 15 acre rural plot in Newcastle-under-Lyme. Work is founder & CEO of Blue Bay Travel in Trentham (Stoke on Trent), a luxury long haul holiday specialist. What did you want to be when you were younger? I love sport and football in particular. Many days and nights were invested in the dream of becoming a professional footballer but it turns out my skills are more fitting with helping others dreams become a reality. Name a few of your favourite places to be… I love a great beach with turquoise sea views. I’d say Mexico (either peaceful Tulum or vibrant Cancun), Barbados West Coast, Tobago’s locations for Pirates of the Caribbean films, Jamaica, Mauritius, or settle for the tranquility that is the Maldives.

What was the last gift you gave someone? My wife loves Kerry Darlington paintings, especially the sought after private collection piece Ophelia. It gave me great joy to secure it from a private collector and gift this to her. Tell us a secret/fun fact about yourself ? We breed alpacas at our home. It’s an amazing experience caring for these wonderful animals. Seeing the alpacas through pregnancy to birth and then watching them grow up is a rewarding experience. Who or what would you place in Room 101? Place BREXIT into Room 101 as the word has a negative tone which has overtaken our lives. Replace it with any word which conveys a positive experience for the new era like BRITOPIA. What’s been your biggest life lesson? You can’t be a good leader unless you generally like people. That is how you bring out the best in them.

“My skills are more fitting with helping others dreams become a reality” 14

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The CHESHIRE Magazine | Regulars

NOTEBOOK Get Smitten with Snowdrops this Winter WORDS: CRAIG HOUGH

Experience one of the UK’s

most popular Snowdrop Walks at Rode Hall & Gardens in Cheshire to mark the start of spring. A beautiful end-of-winter walk for all the family with a wonderfully diverse landscape and over 70 varieties of snowdrops. Walk along paths amidst carpets of white flowers on an enchanting mile-long route. Take in the wild beauty of cascading snowdrops in the Old Wood and Wild Garden, the scenic path down to the lake and drifts of snowdrops in the borders of the formal Nesfield garden in front of the Hall. Highlights are also the two acre Walled Kitchen Garden and an unmissable vista down the Colonel’s Walk where some of the rarest varieties can be viewed. 2nd February – 3rd March,

Snowdrop Walks at RODE HALL GARDENS


20 MAR

What’s On? Dates for the Diary

The World of Hans Zimmer Legendary composer Hans Zimmer has announced a spectacular new tour, ‘The World of Hans Zimmer’, showcasing at Manchester Arena this March.

28 FEB

Chester Lecture Society: Arthur Kilpin Bulley Creator of Ness Gardens Tim Baxter Botanist at Liverpool University’s Ness Gardens, talks about its creator, Arthur Kilpin Bulley, who sponsored the great plant hunters on expeditions to China and Himalayas.

24 FEB

10 MAR

Family Yoga - The Gruffalo (by Yogi Life with Sara Lucarelli) This family Yoga event explores relaxation and stillness as well as non-competitive movement, dance, fun and laughter and the chance to take home a Gruffalo shadow puppet.

The Christe Tower Run After a thigh-burning dash up 798 steps of the Beetham Tower you’re invited to Cloud 23 bar where you can enjoy a glass of bubbly and spectacular views of Manchester.

23 MAR - 6 OCT 27 FEB


Elizabeth Gaskell and The Dark Victorian Novel

Madhatters Afternoon Tea at The Shankly Hotel

Explore the dark side of Victorian fiction in the house where Gaskell wrote many of her gothic tales. This session will delve into Charles Kingsley’s The Water Babies.

Enter The Garden of Eden for a one of a kind experience featuring a mad mob of crazy characters, taken from your favourite literary worlds.


The Dog: A Celebration at Chatsworth Exhibition Chatsworth is celebrating all things canine throughout 2019. The exhibition will feature everything from working dogs, woven dogs, dogs on canvas and dogs on camera, to puppets and popular culture.

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Arts & Culture

10 - 28 FEB

Halle Orchestra, Bridgewater Hall Enjoy classical music? The wonderful Halle Orchestra offers a plethora of great music at the Bridgewater Hall A treat as Sir Mark Elder conducts The Damnation of Faust by Berlioz - 10 Feb. Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony - Feb 14, 17 & 20. Prokofiev’s Fifth Symphony - Feb 28. t: 0161 907 9000

18 FEB

19 FEB - 30 MAR

Peter Andre Celebrating 25 Years, Liverpool Empire

Les Miserables, Palace Theatre

25 years since Peter Andre burst onto the Australian music scene, the internationally acclaimed, media star is back with a 25-date tour of the UK in February and March 2019. t: 0844 871 3017

I can’t wait to see again Sir Cameron Mackintosh’s re-conceived production of Les Misérables, which has taken the world by storm as ’a Les Mis for the 21st century’. Based on Victor Hugo’s classic novel, Boublil and Schönberg’s magnificent score includes the powerful songs: One Day More; Bring Him Home; and Do You Hear the People Sing? Seen by over 120 million people worldwide in 45 countries and 22 languages, Les Misérables is undisputedly one of the world’s most popular musicals. t:0844 871 3019

27 FEB

Up close: Headspace, Manchester Cathedral Hugo Ticciati brought audiences under his spell last season. Find out what this melodic magician does next with Camerata.

26 FEB - 23 MAR

Motown The Musical, Opera House

11 - 16 MAR

14 - 16 FEB

The Russian State Ballet of Serbia, Liverpool Empire Ballet- lovers can enjoy three ballets when The Russian State Ballet of Serbia arrives at the Liverpool Empire: 14 Feb Giselle; 15 Feb La Fille Mal Gardée; 16 Feb The Nutcracker. t: 0844 871 3017

Fame the Musical Liverpool Empire Based on the 1980 phenomenal pop culture film, Fame The Musical is the international smash hit sensation following the lives of students at New York’s High School For The Performing Arts as they navigate their way through the highs and lows, the romances and the heartbreaks and the ultimate elation of life. t: 0844 871 3017

With music and lyrics from the Motown catalogue and book by Motown founder Berry Gordy, Charles Randolph-Wright’s fast-paced production features a live orchestra playing 50 Motown tracks including Ain’t No Mountain High Enough; I’ll Be There, Dancing In The Street, Stop! In The Name Of Love, My Girl and I Heard It through the Grapevine telling the story behind the classic hits. I was on my feet for most of this fantastic show in London. Berry Gordy said, “The UK has always been the gateway for Motown to the rest of the world. I’m thrilled we are taking a second production to the rest of the UK.” t: 0844 871 3019 19

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Rome Cavalieri, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, Rome


Hidden high up in the Roman hills and situated in 15 acres of private parkland Rome Cavalieri is the ideal location. Couples can indulge at the Cavalieri Grand Spa Club, dine in style at Rome’s only three Michelin starred restaurant La Pergola or enjoy panoramic views of the city. Choose the penthouse suite for your own private roof terrace and hot tub.

Romantic Breaks The Cheshire Magazine lists the best romantic getaways for 2019

Cotswold House, Chipping Camden, UK

Danai Beach Resort & Villas, Greece An Eden-like haven surrounded by the Aegean Ocean, Danai Beach Resort & Villas offers couples new levels of romance. Choose to be serenaded by a local Greek choral display or floating pianist, alternatively enjoy a private firework display and an abundance of candles with a four-course meal on the beach. With 64 individually designed luxury suites and villas, private pools and stunning sea views, this resort is the ideal destination for a romantic break. 20

For a British bolthole a little closer to home, the award-winning luxury hotel Cotswold House and spa in the heart of Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire offers a peaceful and luxurious haven in historic surroundings. Try the Hot Tub Cottage or Suite for a warm and charming ambience complete with private gardens and secluded hot tub which can be enjoyed year-round.

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The CHESHIRE Magazine | Feature

The Not So HARD Knock


Natalie Anglesey chats with Annie the Musical’s latest villain, Anita Dobson about her career and the fabulously colourful character, Miss Hannigan.


anchester still gets it first! The new national tour of Annie The Musical opens this month at the Opera House for a two-week stay starring popular Anita Dobson. The last time I spoke to her was when she starred in the glamorous title role in Hello Dolly at The Lowry. Now, like me, her fans will be curious to know why she wants to play the unglamorous, horrid Miss Hannigan, the head of the orphanage. Although the story of little orphan Annie, and her struggle to find happiness, is a firm favourite with theatre audiences, why did she want to play such a baddie? “Being a baddie is fun!” Anita tells me during a break in rehearsals. “Although I always try to explore what made the character I play the person they’ve become. Just like Dolly Levi, who is often played as a brash manipulator, although she was actually Irish and really loved her dead,


Jewish husband, I played her much softer than most actors. Now Miss Hannigan has her own problems and ends up doing a job she hates so she resorts to the demon drink. By the way, playing drunk on stage is easier said than done - although I had years of practice when I played Angie Watts in EastEnders. The trick is not to overthink it and relax.”

“ I always try to explore what made the character I play the person they’ve become” I wondered if Anita had any regrets about leaving the popular soap at the height of her popularity? “The public loved to watch the love/ hate relationship between Angie and her screen husband, Dirty Den, played by Leslie Grantham. The thirty million viewing figures were tremendous, particularly when we had a fight and most people thought I was mad to leave. But do you know that was such a long time ago and I’d already played Angie for three and a half years. I just couldn’t see where else her character would go and I really did think it was time to move on. However, it was flattering that they did ask me to go back several times, but I don’t believe in looking back, only forwards. I’m a great believer in searching for a new challenge.”


Although a friend warned Anita it would be at least five years before she’d get a decent role on television without people saying look there’s Angie, she has no regrets. “He was absolutely right. But I’d trained at the Webber Douglas Drama School, so I didn’t sit on my bottom. I went straight back into my first love - the theatre - and I’m delighted to say, I haven’t looked back since. I think many people had forgotten that I could also sing and dance. But I’ve always considered myself just an actress who can sing and knows how to move about a bit, “she modestly claims. Since then, on stage, Anita has played everything from pantomime to Queen Gertrude in Hamlet.” Now that role was truly exhausting. Not learning the lines or playing the role, you

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understand, but sobbing on stage every night. Physically exhausting!” Amongst the many musicals Anita’s appeared in since there’s been Madam Morrible in Wicked, Mama Morton in Chicago, Mrs Meers in Thoroughly Modern Millie and she played Chris in Calendar Girls and Joan Crawford in Bette and Joan on stage. “I’m a huge fan of all those wonderful old Hollywood films so was delighted to be asked. However, at first, they asked me to play Bette Davis. Although I loved the play and admired her work, I said no because I just could not relate to her. But when they offered me the role of Joan Crawford I said yes straight away because we were both from poor backgrounds and achieved success through adversity - so I could relate to her both as an actress and a woman.” Anita is far too modest to mention she’s been nominated for several prestigious awards for her work on stage and has since been seen on television series like The Bill, Holby City, The Last Detective and Hotel Babylon. Sensibly she has allowed herself time for

a private life with Queen guitarist, vocalist and composer, Brian May CBE, although, unwittingly, I played gooseberry on their first date!

“The thing that keeps me feeling

alive is the variety of roles I have been fortunate to play” “Yes, it was the UK film premiere of the American comedy Down and Out in Beverley Hills, “Anita recalls. I reminded her I’d come straight from the studios at LBC where I was broadcasting, had no time to change into my glittering outfit, and was about to turn back from the red carpet when Anita and Brian hooked their arms under both of mine and marched me down to the banks of film and television cameras. It was only later at dinner I

discovered it was their first date. But Anita adds, “ We’ve now known each other for thirty years and been happily married for over eighteen!” Curious about the duration of their successful marriage, when so many showbiz marriages founder, Anita laughs. “Well, you have to remember I am married to a Rock God who never ceases to amaze me. Music and Queen is still a major part of our lives and keeps Brian busy.” Of course, she’s referring to the new movie about Freddie Mercury called Bohemian Rhapsody and preparations for Queen’s big American tour later in the year. There’s also


Feature| The CHESHIRE Magazine

the return to Manchester of Queen’s popular musical We Will Rock You, which has sometimes seen Brian surprising audiences at the finale by joining the cast on stage to play one of his masterly guitar riffs. “We actually made a record together called Talking of Love which didn’t set the world on fire but reached about forty in the charts,” Anita laughs. “Nowhere near the success of Anyone Can Fall In Love, which I recorded to the theme tune of EastEnders and which reached number four in the charts. But that was all just a bit of fun.” Born in London, in 1949, Anita has been singing on stage from the age of four but claims she never had any ambition to be a pop star. But it’s not long before she’s back talking about her favourite subject. “Not only is Brian one of the kindest people I know he is also one of the most intelligent. He is an active speaker and campaigner on behalf of animal rights and you probably already know that he’s a qualified astrophysicist and is often up late at night studying the stars through his telescope. Indeed he spent a year as a visiting professor at Liverpool University and they very kindly made me a Companion of the Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts. “ The theatre is in Anita’s blood although she’ll only be doing three months of the tour as she doesn’t like to be away from Brian too long. Although it’s set in 1930’s New York, it’s a timeless rags to riches story of the American Dream. It’s about the haves and have nots and those that want more than their lot. But what is she hoping audiences will take away from this show? ”Well for a start it’s such an uplifting story about an orphan, who gets a second chance in life, that it’s a pleasure to be part of it. I saw Sheila Hancock play Miss Hannigan and of

course, as you know, Craig Revel Horwood, who directed the show lots of times, also put on a frock to play Miss Hannigan - so I’m following some terrific actors. Talking about which we have a great cast and the children, particularly those who play Annie, are incredible. This stunning new production has some unforgettable songs like It’s The Hard Knock Life, Easy Street, I Don’t Need Anything But You and of course the big hit song Tomorrow! “The thing that keeps me feeling alive is the variety of roles I have been fortunate to play, on stage, on the radio and on television. I know I’ve been very lucky and I’m grateful. I just hope that audiences will enjoy this musical and I bet you anything they’ll come out singing the songs!” Annie The Musical Opera House, Manchester 2-16 February 2019. t:0844 871 3018

“I went straight back into my first love - the theatre and I’m delighted to say, I haven’t looked back since” 28









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Natalie Anglesey has breakfast with Rebecca Adlington to chat about life after the Olympics and the challenges next on her agenda


e are used to seeing double Olympian gold medal winner, Rebecca Adlington OBE, collecting medals for her chosen sport of swimming or, more recently, as a television sports pundit- commenting on athletes who have impressed her. Even more delightful in person, when we meet Becky laughingly reminisces about her past and present achievements. “I thoroughly enjoy broadcasting, particularly when my swimming colleague Mark Foster is with me. We’ve been friends for years as he is one of the few people who knows about dealing with competitive sports stress. Much as I loved swimming, I don’t miss those early 5 o’clock in the morning starts,” Becky laughs. “Scraping the ice from my windscreen every morning before driving to training and then going on to school, was just part of my regular day. When I was seventeen, I even learnt to drive and passed my test within three months just so


my dad could have a rest from driving me around every day. But it was worth it to me because I was dedicated to winning and going for Olympic gold.” Today it’s another early start for ‘breakfast with Becky’ as we meet at the 8 am launch of the UK Challenge 2019 at Café Grande in Manchester. Luckily she doesn’t have far to travel as she’s swapped her hometown of Mansfield for Stockport. “Don’t get me wrong I’m really proud of all my medal wins in a sport I still love. But people forget that I was training seriously from the age of eight because I was truly dedicated to swimming and even then was determined to get to the Olympics. I spent years training, working out and dieting to achieve my goals. In the end, I just got fed up with living on painkillers when I sustained an injury. “ Becky won two gold medals at the 2008 Summer Olympics in the 400 and the 800 meters freestyle, breaking the 19 year old world record. She was the first British Olympic swimming champion since 1988 and the first British Olympic swimmer to win two Olympic gold medals since 1908. She

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Feature

early days for her yet so I’m not pushing her. “I have my own swimming project called the Becky Adlington Swim Stars which I set up because I was horrified to learn that over a million children can’t swim. Because of the unusually hot summer, we had more people going into deep water without realising how strong the underwater currents can be so- so I hope to educate them as well as teach them to swim. Weekly I get letters from people saying that their local pool has closed or they can’t find a swimming club to join. There are fitness centres here in Cheshire as well as all over the country with pools, and if you ask there, they’ll give you the details. But we really need the government to get behind local councils to regenerate an interest in swimming because it should be a life-skill so that lives can be saved.

repeated her triumph at the Commonwealth Games while in the 2011 World Aquatics Championship she won gold in the 800 meters and silver in the 400 metres. Later she won bronze medals in both the 400 and 800 meters freestyle in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London. Becky’s new-found celebrity status saw her name on a train, a pub and her local swimming pool. But the icing on the cake was when she was awarded the OBE by HRH The Queen. Becky blushes when she describes how excited she was by that honour. “I’d met Princess Ann on several occasions as she’s a superb horsewoman who has won medals herself and she handed me my trophy when I was voted Sportswoman of the Year- as she’d won it the previous year. I’d also met Wills and Kate. “But to be awarded the OBE by The Queen was such a highlight for my family and me. However, when I finally decided to retire from the competitive sport, you would not believe the reaction I received. People still ask me- what do you do all day if you retired at twenty-three? Well, I can tell them now. A large part of my day is spent looking after my three-year-old daughter, Summer, who loves swimming - but its

To be awarded the OBE by The Queen was such a highlight for my family and me “But on the bright side, I also enjoy helping to launch worthwhile projects like the UK Challenge 2019. I did this challenge myself last year, and although I’d never met my team-mates before, we soon became firm friends, and we had a ball making money for charitable causes. Although we did have one mishap on our way home when a wheel on our bus was damaged, and we had to be rescued by a wonderful RAF team. I’ve told my team if we do the UK Challenge this year- I’m booking the bus myself this time!” The CEO master-minding the UK Challenge 2019 is award-winning, business expert David Moran who, with his equally enthusiastic wife


Suzie, organises the whole of this nationwide enterprise which sees contestants participating from all over the country. Referring to Becky’s transport problem he adds: “ I had a wonderful email from the RAF team which I will precis: It’s not every day your doorbell rings and Rebecca Adlington is standing there with a crate of beer to say thanks to us for mending her wheel!” A sportsman in his youth David was Navy under 23 Squash Champion and also played rugby. A Chemical Engineer by training he started his career in the nuclear industry before moving into healthcare.  He spent 25 years in various roles as either an MD or CEO. Fifteen years of those were spent overseas working in European countries like Poland, Portugal and Spain as well as Malaysia, and Thailand. “I’ve also established businesses in Japan, Brazil and the US and led various international acquisition projects. My career has afforded me great opportunities to work with different cultures and help on various international delegations as a business expert. When we returned to this country, I just felt the time was right for me to give something back.” David’s passion for building and leading effective teams led him spear-heading a team to take over the UK Challenge. “ It’s unique in many ways and gives forward-thinking companies the opportunities to test and develop their people in a way that is just not possible in a work environment.  Wellness in the workplace is an increasing priority for businesses. We work on simple values which can be summed up in


one word “HIPPY” which identifies the following values: Humility; Integrity; Professionalism; Passion; and (being) Yourself.” The main beneficiary of The UK Challenge this year is The Teenage Cancer Trust, represented at the launch by Annmarie Carey, Corporate Account Manager, who told me the shocking statistics that around seven young people, aged between 13 and 24, are diagnosed with cancer every day here in the UK.

The UK Challenge is important, and we can legitimately say the world’s number one corporate team building event is based here in Cheshire “They need expert treatment and support from the moment they hear the word cancer,” Annmarie explains. “We are the only UK charity providing specialist nursing and emotional support to young people with cancer. The Teenage Cancer Trust’s life-changing care and support for young people before, during and after cancer, provides them with the opportunity to build their self-esteem and meet others living through the same experience. “Every young person with cancer should have access to this kind of care, but at the Teenage Cancer Trust, we simply do not have enough nurses. Right now, we can only reach half of those who need them, so we need support to fund more world-leading nursing care. UK Challenge & The Teenage Cancer Trust will work closely on many fundraising initiatives with the goal of raising £300,000 which is enough to fund six Teenage Cancer Trust specialist Lead Nurses for a year.” Becky is aware of how important charitable fund-raising is as she also supports another

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Feature

charity which is of personal significance to her. “I’m still an Ambassador for the Encephalitis Society as my sister was diagnosed with that condition many years ago and many people are unaware of how debilitating that can be. It made me want to train even harder, and I still help to raise awareness of this condition.” Aware that she has inspired other young men and women to swim, I wondered who had inspired Becky.” Michael Phelps. I’d stop dead in my tracks just to watch him swim as he was so driven. You can’t teach motivation or work ethic. I think I inherited it from my dad, but the rest was already inside of me. I just knew I wanted to win at the Olympics from an early age.” However, Becky’s also enjoyed more entertaining challenges because of her celebrity status. “I was lucky enough to be invited on several television programmes and popped up on A Question of Sport, and The Chase: Celebrity Special, among others. But the programme I enjoyed the most was I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out of Here! I enjoyed every single minute in the Australian jungle. I was also supposed to do The Jump but had to pull out because I dislocated my shoulder during training - although I’m even thinking about having another bash! “However, the programme I’m proudest of was Celebrity Masterchef, and I managed to get through to the last four. Since I stopped training, I’ve rediscovered my passion for food. I love cooking and particularly baking with my 3-year-old daughter Summer.  Cakes are our favourite! No doubt we’ll soon be baking in our new home as we moved house before Christmas and I’ve decorated her room first.” This is a happy time for Becky and her daughter with her ex-husband, sportsman Harry Needs equally besotted with their daughter. There’s also a new man in Becky’s life. “One of the down-sides of celebrity is

that social media got hold of that story, so it’s no longer private. But there’s nothing you can do about that. He’s not moving in with us as it’s still early days, but yes, life is good,” she beams. CEO David Moran interrupts to remind us why we are all here. “As a business, we are very busy organising other international challenges. But right now we are focussing on the UK Challenge 2019. Last year we raised £400 thousand, and this year we are aiming to exceed that amount. “The 30 years of heritage of The UK Challenge is important, and we can legitimately say the world’s number one corporate team building event is based here in Cheshire. Entry requirements are simple: basically, it requires a team of 6 + 1 with an optional senior exec to join in during this UK Challenge in Snowdonia. Entry includes all accommodation in single en-suite rooms, all food, running suits, essential equipment. The challenge takes place from 4th - 7th July 2019. Although you don’t have to be super-fit, the challenges do require a mixture of physical and mental challenges and please bear in mind that we are hoping to give as much money as we can to the Teenage Cancer Trust.” Our very own team from The Cheshire Magazine is bravely headed by Scott Illingworth-Harrison who will be keeping us in touch with their progress, and we’ll be cheering them on. I did notice that he didn’t touch any of the breakfast provided- so no doubt training has already begun! If you’d like to take part in this worthwhile venture, then more information is available on the UK Challenge 2019 website.


Elegant with a hint of glamour, classic yet contemporary. The Country Cheshire Manor house lends itself to a wide range of people on the look out to source something truly gorgeous where they can bring their wedding dreams to reality with help of our dedicated specialists.

01606 261361



Vida Forever : Ever Searching For The One

Craig Hough sat down with Rachel Vida MacLynn the Founder and CEO of Vida Consultancy to discuss all things dating and plans to bring their events to the North. What previous experience did you have match-making and how did this inspire you to set up your own dating consultancy? Having worked as a business psychologist for a few years in my twenties, a moment of serendipity found me looking at a job advert for a psychologist to join a matchmaking agency in London. When I read the advert, I had butterflies in my stomach - it felt like my calling! I went on to work for a matchmaking agency for nearly 5 years, then made the brave decision to set up my own agency in 2011. I loved everything about matchmaking – meeting some of the most inspirational and successful people from the UK and around the world. It felt like such an honour to have people entrust me with helping them achieve their goal of finding a long-term partner. In addition, I also recognised that the matchmaking industry was likely to boom in the UK, following its popularity in the States. This, to me, presented as a unique opportunity for me to thrive in a career that used to have very little involvement by psychologists.

How do you feel dating trends have evolved and how do you keep up with them? The dating scene has been blown wide open since dating apps came into play around 2012 – no more so than with the advent of Tinder. Even going back before that, the Internet completely revolutionised all we knew about dating, when lonely hearts ads were replaced by online dating profiles in the late ’90s – but dating apps especially are just a world unto themselves. The online dating industry is huge, with thousands of apps available on the market. Matchmaking represents most the offline dating world. I attend conferences around the world to keep up to date with the latest developments and to seek inspiration for how to grow my business. How does online dating compare to using a dating consultancy like yourselves? Nowadays, many people throw themselves into online dating to find a long-term partner, not just a short-term fling, and they are forming impressions based on a single picture, and

“We assess values and attitudes (that’s where the humour, dress sense, body language, manner 36


perhaps just a sentence or two of text. Online dating benefits from high volume and a low price point. If you choose the right app or site, dedicate significant time and adopt the right strategy (e.g. approach people who are potentially compatible with you), then the chances are, eventually you’ll find someone. So, with online dating, the investment of money is low, but the investment of time and energy is high. Offline matchmaking sits at the opposite end of the spectrum. The financial investment is much higher, but investment of time is lower. With matchmaking, rather than an algorithm pointing you in the direction of your future spouse, a matchmaker personally searches on your behalf and guides you through your dating journey, picking up on nuances that an algorithm could never capture. We do this by meeting all the matches for our clients before they are introduced. We assess values and attitudes (that’s where the psychology comes in); but we also gauge things like humour, dress sense, body language, manner – areas that require human judgement.   What is the process you go through to find a new customer the perfect match? At Vida, our in-house team of psychologists has developed our own method of assessing compatibility by honing in on values. Every client is assigned a matchmaker who gets to know his/ her client personally and conducting an in-depth profiling session. We then work in partnership with our clients by discussing profiles of matches that have been hand-picked by the matchmaker. We give our clients the final say on who they choose to meet. The process is incredibly effective


The CHESHIRE Magazine | Feature

because there are many reasons why someone hasn’t met a partner. For example, some people think they know what they want in a partner, but their perception is skewed. We share our insight and expertise with our clients, sometimes via structured coaching sessions and other times it’ll be in the form of relaxed feedback shared during a coffee meeting. Ultimately, we steer our clients towards achieving one goal; and that is to find their ultimate match. Everything we do has this goal in mind. What support does the consultancy offer customers throughout their dating process? We offer coaching through our in-house psychologist and relationship expert, Madeleine Mason Roantree. Madeleine’s service runs alongside our matchmaking service, so she can offer a unique perspective on some of the barriers people face with finding the right partner and getting into a relationship. When someone is demonstrating behaviours such a self-sabotage or avoidance, Madeleine has the expertise to step in and help. In addition, our matchmakers keep in regular contact with their clients. We’re a personal and friendly team. At the end of the day, what we are involved in is finding people love, and that touches on a wide array of emotions for most people, so it’s paramount that every matchmaker is able to lend a listening ear and be mindful of their member’s experiences.   Do you host events for your customers to meet? Yes, we run events, usually in London and we

psychology comes in); but we also gauge things like – areas that require human judgement. ” 37

Feature | The CHESHIRE Magazine

have recently expanded our events to Manchester and NYC. Our last event was held at a stunning private members’ club in London. We have 150 guests and 15 members of the Vida team, who worked the room to make everyone feel welcome. Our events are now run in partnership with EliteSingles. I was there and have to say, the crowd was impressive. We had a simple yet effective ice-breaker game that encouraged everyone to talk to as many members of the opposite sex. The next day our team had a flurry of emails from our guests updating us VIDA TEAM on all the phone numbers that had been exchanged. It was a huge success! Are you able to share your favourite success story? Yes, I love to reminisce! Last March we had a lady join our consultancy. Stunning, successful, active. She is an entrepreneur and qualified nutritionist. She and her match were attracted to one another from the get-go on their first date. Both in their 30s, they had a natural chemistry and connected instantly. Since day one, they’ve gone only from strength to strength, from spending New Year together in the Bahamas to travelling out to South America to meet his. They share many common interests, such as sports, fitness and travel, and are very much looking to their future as a couple.   Having been the matchmaker for so many couples over the years, what is your own personal love story? I was introduced to my fiancé Jamie by my best friend! She met him in Fiji in 2007 when they were both travelling independently around the world. They became friends and she noticed that his general attitude to life was closely aligned with mine. In 2010 Jamie and I were introduced at a barbeque. We were both single and looking for a serious relationship. We fell in love very quickly and haven’t looked back.


We asked Vida Dating Coach Madelaine for her top tips for a first date


Meet somewhere convenient and comfortable for you both. You are more likely to enjoy yourself, even if the date is a no-go.

Read the headlines of a couple of different newspapers for inspiration on topical things to talk about.



Keep the date short and sweet, 60–90 minutes. If there is chemistry it will add to the excitement of a blossoming relationship; if not, you didn’t spend too much precious time on a dead end. Allow yourself to have fun. You want to know whether the two of you can get along. Don’t worry about what’s not right about your date for now.



Work out beforehand what your life values are (kindness, fame, health etc.), and ask yourself during the conversation whether your date possesses similar values. If yes, go on a second date – even if the sparks aren’t flying around you.

Collection Crowing GLORY

Charmingly, aigrette

describes a headdress consisting of a white egret’s feather or other decoration such as a spray of gems, and it has inspired this incarnation of JosÊphine, the iconic Chaumet collection. Coloured gemstones, from amethyst and citrine to peridot, aquamarine and rhodolite garnet, are combined with diamonds and pearls to sparklingly elegant effect. Chaumet was founded in 1780 in Paris, and the Maison became the official jeweller to Empress Josephine. The dazzling and delicate hues found in her wardrobe and her passion for iridescent oriental pearls come to life in this collection.


Material Good

Jewellery & Watch news


Treat your loved one, or yourself, to an exquisite new piece of jewellery or watch they’ll treasure forever.

High Time Despite the fact we rely ever more on our phones, which tell us the time as just one of their myriad functions, wearing a wristwatch so carefully crafted it could be deemed a work of art is not going out of fashion. Enter Rolex, with two timepieces that make just as much of a statement as a fine investment. The Datejust 41 is made from yellow Rolesor - a combination of Oystersteel and 18ct yellow gold - and boasts a distinctive champagne baton dial, while the more feminine Datejust 31 is made from the same material, featuring a diamond bezel with diamond mother of pearl dial. An exquisite way to kick start any resolutions about time-keeping in 2019. Datejust 41, £9,800, Datejust 31, yellow Rolesor, £15,950, both Rolex,


In 2018, the words ‘supply chain’ appeared in the news and social media feeds ever more, as we collectively woke up to the impact some of our habits and consumption are having on the planet. Atelier Swarovski is leading the charge in the jewellery industry, using technology to instigate change – it uses a patented formula to create its own crystals, as one example – and ensuring mindful shopping is no longer the less attractive option. We are “committed to working sustainably and responsibly to create… fine jewellery for the conscious-minded luxury consumer who is ready for change”, declares creative director Nadia Swarovski. Last year, the company committed to making all of its fine jewellery with responsibly-sourced gold and launched its Atelier Swarovski by Penélope Cruz Fine Jewellery Collection, a worthwhile investment if you’re in pursuit of earthfriendly gems for Valentine’s Day. “I am lucky to be in a position where I can to help shine a light on conscious luxury and create products that have a positive impact,” Cruz explains. “Today, when we buy something we want to know what is it, where it comes from, how it was made, what it involves.” Her Lola earrings are made from Swarovski created diamonds and rubies, and responsiblysourced Fairtrade Gold. Lola earrings, £5,995, Atelier Swarovski By Penélope Cruz; Rainforest earrings and Azure earrings, both £2,495,

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Jewellery

Fly Me to the Moon Dior has unveiled a series of exquisite new timepieces that join the Dior VIII Montaigne collection. The Clair de Lune watches are inspired “by the starry universe that was so fascinating to Monsieur Dior” and which is often seen in the Maison’s collections. Each one of the three exclusive automatic models represents a different phase of the moon – full, half and crescent – and boasts a case set with diamonds. The moon patterns are intricately illustrated on the dial with gold threads and diamonds. Only 88 editions of each watch are available. Dior VIII Montaigne Clair de Lune watches, POA,

Fiorever Yours

Fortune favours the bold, this Valentine’s Day, says Bulgari, introducing Fiorever, a collection of statement diamond jewellery that takes its whimsical name from the Italian word for flower and the English word forever. The collection’s signature is a wild bloom with four petals, a motif that decorates many a vestige of the Roman Empire, such as the garden frescos of Villa di Livia and the ceiling mosaics of the Santa Costanza Mausoleum. In its campaign, the dynamic Fiorever woman is interpreted by actress Úrsula Corberó. Fiorever collection, POA,

A New Dimension

We love these striking B Dimension rings, the result of a collaboration between Bucherer and South Korean designer Yunjo Lee. She was inspired by the work of the American artist Ellsworth Kelly and this is clear in her use of geometry, colour and simplicity. The 26-piece collection includes earrings, necklaces, rings, and bracelets, featuring a distinctive diamond pavé circle, which adorns the jewellery like stylised butterfly wings. Lee has used a micropavé of tiny brilliant diamonds just 0.7-0.9mm wide, adding dashes of colour courtesy of blue lapis lazuli, black onyx and carmine carnelian gemstones, which cover the very fine folded gold circle. The core collection is crafted in 18-carat white gold. Rings are also available in pink and white gold. B Dimension collection, from £1,450,

loves A Rose By Any Other Name

Rose gold has made its stamp on the industry over the last decade, and David M Robinson is at the forefront of the brands using this striking precious metal in creative, contemporary designs. If your other half has a penchant for rose gold, it’s the perfect modern Valentine’s Day jewellery gift. We love these striking triangle drop earrings and split diamond eternity ring, brilliant for adding some serious sparkle to winter party outfits. The baguette-cut diamond bracelet is delicate enough to dress up an evening ensemble, and just as wearable during the day. Earrings, £3,950, ring, £1,995, bracelet, £5,500,


Weddings at Carden Park Hotel - Cheshire’s Country Estate Discover Cheshire’s 2018 Wedding Venue of the Year WEDDING FAYRE Surround yourself with friends and family as you take your vows overlooking Sunday 3rd March 11am - 4pm the beautiful countryside. This is your dream wedding day... With a choice of venues including the outdoor Carden Gazebo, Carden Suite with starlight ceiling and newly refurbished Shooting Suite we truly offer the perfect venue. The 1,000 acre estate offers endless opportunities for breathtaking wedding photography and our expert team will tailor your wedding package to create everlasting memories.

Enjoy a welcome drink View our venues including the Carden Gazebo, Shooting Suite and Carden Suite dressed for a wedding Visit a range of wedding industry exhibitors for all your wedding needs Watch the wedding catwalk show

Carden Park Hotel, Chester, CH3 9DQ I 01829 731506 I I

To Have

& To Hold

Winter Weddings

Following last month’s

look at your proposal, engagement party, and choosing the time of year to host your magical day the wedding world is your oyster now and time to make your big day exactly what you want it to be. This issue we offer advice on bridal parties, include wonderful stories of past weddings from our favourite venues, and share our list of top suppliers.


Best Wedding Planner - North at the 2018 English Wedding Awards

01625 538999

Best Events Management Company at the 2018 Talk of Manchester Business Awards


The CHESHIRE Magazine | Weddings

Luxury Bridal Parties Treat yourself and your bridal party with a day of pampering at Beauty Bazaar, Harvey Nichols in Liverpool.

Bridal Beauty Prep

Bridal and Hen Parties

Looking for a little hen-spiration? Look no further, as we know how to throw a party. Why not start your experience under the glittering roof of the WOW Bar with bubbles and nibbles, before enjoying a series of pampering treatments and services. With three stylish floors in the heart of Liverpool ONE housing the very best brands in luxury fragrance, skincare and makeup, our team of experts can tailor your celebration to suit your every need, creating an unforgettable experience.

Now you’ve found the dress it’s time to nail the perfect beauty regime. Enjoy a day of bridal pampering and planning at Beauty Bazaar, Harvey Nichols. Begin with a one to one consultation with their Personal Shopper who can advise on everything from treatment recommendations to bridal party gifting. Indulge in a bespoke skincare experience with a La Mer therapist before discovering the ultimate makeup products to use on your big day with a bridal makeover lesson with an impartial Beauty Stylist in The Studio. Complete your experience with a fragrance styling session at Jo Malone London and combine their extensive selection of colognes to create your bespoke wedding day scent.

Beauty Packages

Beauty Bazaar’s expertly created beauty packages are the best way to enjoy all that we have to offer. Choose from our indulgent selections or let our Spa Consultants create something totally bespoke, especially for you.

For more information, visit instore at Beauty Bazaar, Harvey Nichols, 16 Manesty’s Lane, Liverpool ONE, L1 3DL Or Contact Eve Slater E: T:0780 324 8023.


Unforgettable celebrations brought together with love Whether it’s a glittering charity ball, spectacular prom, stylish birthday party, fun-filled baby showers, intimate christening or a simple get-together with friends and family; we’re here to ensure your event is memorable for all the right reasons. For a glimpse visit our wedding showcases throughout the year; Sunday 2nd February 10am - 6pm, Thursday 13th June 6pm - 8.30pm, Thursday 19th September 6pm - 8.30pm Meet our dedicated events team see our suites beautifully dressed for that special occasion. Includes drink on arrival and free goody bag.

For more information, please contact Stevie Simpson on 01565 622144 Cottons Hotel & Spa Manchester Road, Knutsford, Cheshire, WA16 0SU T 01565 650333 E

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Weddings

3 of the Best Venues The Cheshire Magazine asked three of the best wedding venues in the North West to share their favourite wedding stories from last year

Jinesh & Hitesha at

Carden Park

When two ceremonies are better than one


Use Carden staff to help – they are so knowledgeable and know what will work and what won’t. Chances are they will also find a solution! We very rarely heard the word “no”.” Carden Park’s newly appointed wedding executive, Sarah Povey, is there to guide couples from the moment they enquire, to the big day. Carden Park go the extra mile, offering an on-site florist ‘Blooming Beautiful’ and hairdressers ‘The Hair Room’. With a rising number of weddings no longer just a one-day event, the 198 bedroomed country estate lends itself as a perfect venue to make weddings last longer…


heshire’s Wedding venue of the Year, played host in the summer of 2018 to a beautiful fusion wedding for Jinesh and Hitesha. The couple had both a traditional Hindu ceremony as well as a civil ceremony, both taking place on the same day with an evening event to celebrate. The Carden Suite provided a large and flexible space for the traditional Hindu ceremony and evening reception, a completely relaxing area, fitted with a stage and room for a spacious dance floor with optical mirrors turning into screens. The acres of Cheshire countryside provided a perfect backdrop for the civil ceremony, which took place outdoors on the front lawn. The bride made her way down the aisle to sounds of an acoustic band, performing the lyrics to Lumineers song ‘Hey Ho’ under the summer sun. The evening celebrations were kicked off with a first dance to Frank Sinatra’s ‘Under my skin’, the couple welcomed 280 guests surprising them with life-sized caricatures and a photo booth to capture memories of the night. Jinesh and Hitesha advise future brides and grooms to, “Enjoy the whole process and try and not to stress! We were very strict with our budget and kept track of all costs otherwise things can spiral, but remember there are always a few costs here and there that you don’t account for so keep some buffer in your budget.


Weddings | The CHESHIRE Magazine

Stevie & Danielle at

Colshaw Hall


hen I first met Danielle, I was attracted to absolutely everything about her, her beauty, her personality, her quick wit and definitely her confidence. I got to know her more during Friday drinks after work. I think it was obvious to everyone around us that we had a special chemistry! Danielle quickly became my best friend (we went on to run a business together and even have the same friends). We never get bored of each other’s company or argue. I soon realised this is rare and that I had found the person I will spend the rest of my life with. Five years after meeting, I took her to the location of our first date and proposed. She was in utter shock, it was pouring down with rain, but she said yes! I had always dreamt of a having a countryside wedding with my closest friends and family. Something with character that stood out from the rest. When I arrived at Colshaw Hall I knew at the top of the driveway that it was the one, we absolutely fell in love! Everything was within walking distance, we could all stay in the hall overnight. It had everything to offer and more. On the wedding day, the Colshaw Hall team were amazing. They made sure everything went to plan. Shelley calmed my nerves in the morning and Ian the Toastmaster was fantastic too. In fact, every single member of staff went out of their way for us. Even our guests commented on how impressive they all were.


When I walked up the aisle in the ceremony room, I was so emotional, seeing all my friends and family there to celebrate with us. I burst into tears when I saw Danielle. I couldn’t wait to for her to become a Carden! We took our vows and walked out as a married couple accompanies by a string quartet - it was very romantic. Our wedding breakfast was a short stroll from the ceremony room. Red Floral Architecture did our flowers and I knew they would look sensational, but I was blown away. I burst into tears (again) when I saw the Peel Suite as it really was breath-taking. Meanwhile, our guests enjoyed a drinks reception in the walled gardens, basking in 29-degree sunshine! One of my favourite parts of the day was Danielle’s speech. She was so nervous, but it didn’t show, and she absolutely smashed it! Danielle was stunned by how amazing the food was. She said it was by far the nicest food she had ever tasted in her life. We would recommend Barrett’s Event Catering in a heartbeat. After the wedding, we took time to walk around the grounds and gardens taking it all in. We chose Jeff Langhorne for our shots as we love natural images and he captured the moments at their best- sometimes we didn’t know the photographs were being taken! Our party really got started in the evening with an entertainment set by Six15 complete with sax and percussion for a “Hacienda “touch. The start of our new chapter was amazing. From start to finish the venue looked like a fairy- tale wedding. As Danielle puts it, it was by far the best day of my life, not only did I get to marry the most beautiful women in the world, I got to do this at what I believe to be the most stunning venue we could have wished for. We wouldn’t change a single thing!

The TheCHESHIRE CHESHIREMagazine Magazine| Weddings | Regulars

William & Grace at

Merrydale Manor



illiam and I met at Leeds University and had been together for nearly eight years before we decided to tie the knot. William proposed to me in the rain forest in Barbados which was followed up by a romantic dinner at The Cliff restaurant. We moved to Alderley Edge in 2016 and started to search for the perfect wedding venue in Cheshire. We were ecstatic to find Merrydale Manor, as it really suited our style and taste. For us, it was the perfect blend of country manor exclusivity but with crisp, contemporary interiors. We loved the fact that we could stay the night in the manor house and that we had the whole country estate to ourselves. During our time at Merrydale Manor, we were introduced to wedding planners – Irlam Warburton Events. William and I are really busy people, William is a company director and I am a children’s intensive care nurse so there’s not a lot of downtimes. After meeting Georgina and Megan from Irlam Warburton Events we knew that having them to plan and organise our wedding was the way forward. We were confident that we would get the wedding we wanted. They really brought our ideas together and nothing was too much trouble. They also introduced us to and arranged some of the best suppliers! Our wedding theme was natural, simplistic and classic. We had nude tones, sparkling glass, white flowers and greenery that really looked spectacular. The flowers were designed by Red Floral Architecture and they were simply stunning. On the morning of the wedding, I felt ridiculously calm! The sun was shining, and everything was in place. I knew I was in great hands, so I just wanted to enjoy every second. I loved getting ready for the

wedding with my bridesmaids. They originate from all different parts of my life and I treasure each and every one of them. They were all incredible from planning the hen do and all the extra little touches that made the day incredible! My dress was a personalised Pronovias Atelier from Knutsford Wedding Gallery. Because it was so elegant in its own right I didn’t need to accessorise and wore my hair loose to fit with the natural theme. The bridesmaids looked beautiful in their nude floor-length dresses. Another reason that I chose Merrydale Manor was that they made it possible to have our golden retriever ‘Theo’ as our ring bearer. I think there was some slight chaos orchestrating this, but something I was wonderfully unaware of until afterward! When I saw William at the top of the aisle, I was overcome with love and excitement. As I got to the top I was lost for words and holding back tears of happiness! We said our vows and were played out to a string quartet. Our drinks reception in The Merrydale Suite was breathtaking. Dean Mac played throughout the wedding breakfast whilst we dined on the most delicious food by Barrett’s Event Catering. In the evening, we had the Gatsby Band who were EPIC, followed by a six15 DJ set who really got the party in full swing. The whole day and evening came together amazingly, and the sun shone all day! Our photographer Jonny Draper shot the most amazing photos to treasure. The team at Merrydale Manor and Irlam Warburton Events were on hand to cover every little thing so that it was pure enjoyment for us and no stress! My advice for any future Bride or Groom to remember that it’s your day and your dreams ARE possible! 51

Weddings | The CHESHIRE Magazine

Be s t of the Re s t From bespoke gifts and top quality catering to sound advice from the experts, we round up our top picks to help your wedding planning

Scene My Event

Planning a wedding can often be a daunting challenge and with time being precious you often need options that are effortless, affordable and are of the highest quality. Scene My Event are an award-winning end to end event supplier that boast one of the largest bespoke product ranges in the UK. They offer a comprehensive solution for all sizes of occasions with categories including, stunning venue dressing, premium entertainment, production lighting and cutting-edge touch screen photo booth technology. This unique range enables them to tailor truly beautiful bespoke packages that stay true to your vision and style without the hassle of using multiple companies.

Featuring upfront visible online pricing on every product in their range there is no need to shop around and wait for days on end to get a quote, making them the North Wests easiest, quickest and most transparent luxury events company to work with. Many of the products and services are exclusive and unique. They have been carefully sourced, manufactured and customised to ensure that they can’t be found anywhere else - ensuring those finer details make a big difference.


Whether you’re looking for the finishing touches to your wedding or you require a fully bespoke package creating, the team at Scene My Event will ensure you’re left amazed and expectations exceeded.

Horseradish Catering Horseradish Catering offer creative catering, innovative event delivery, and venue management across the breadth of the UK. They promise a bespoke, quality experience like no other. Providing outstanding food and service at each wedding creating culinary memories for you and your guests to last long after the event. Their talented team of 5* and Michelin experienced chefs are experts in designing delicious menus. Driven by their out-there passion for food they pride themselves on creating unforgettable culinary experiences. Their food and drinks experts have years of experience and draw on their extraordinary depth of knowledge to recommend the perfect bespoke menu for any wedding.

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Our Luxury Wedding Planner, Tracy Lavin shares her expert advice for your big day

Build My Gift Meaningful gifts create lasting memories and the Build My Gift team are on hand to ensure that each tells a story, from the carefully selected products, to the personalised message, and the bespoke wrapping details. Built to perfection, each curation that leaves their studio is a gift to be remembered. As magical as the occasion will ultimately be, planning a wedding can be stressful and close to impossible without a helping hand from your nearest and dearest. Build My Gift have the perfect way for you to say thank you…to your sibling who stayed up all night perfecting your flower arrangements, to a friend whose culinary expertise helped you choose the most delightful cake, and your parents whose endless advice and patience guided you to your special day. And of course, to your guests, who have travelled from near and far to celebrate with you. Build My Gift is there to help spread the love.

• Add a charger plate or coloured water glass to the tables as it looks chic • Always sign your venue contract for lower guest numbers as its always easier to add guests than take them away • Floor length table cloths always look better on tables and can be hired in • Edible flowers floating on prosecco or coloured candy floss sitting on top of a champagne glasses make a great first impression for arrival drinks • When buying your wedding dress, negotiate with the designer to include in the price any alterations • Think outside the general wedding box! Go to galleries or designer fashion shows for inspiration • Get a bespoke tailored suit for the groom and bestmen, they look great as made to measure and they can keep them for future events and parties • Entertainment is key – use music during all aspects of the day, ceremony, drinks reception, the meal and evening party. • Your invitation sets the tone of your wedding, so work on a bespoke design/theme with your planner for this • Instead of a traditional wedding stand for the cake, get your florist to set up/suspend a swing decorated with foliage and flowers Tracy Lavin, CEO & Creative Designer T: 01565 860 126 E:


Weddings | The CHESHIRE Magazine

The Wedding Directory From photographers and videographers to entertainment and flowers we have pin pointed the best suppliers in the North West

String Infusion

Bespoke Music Service A vibrant all female, electric and acoustic string group. Managed by founder Emma Rushworth, the group offers a bespoke service by providing flexibility in size of group ranging from 1 to 20+ players from solo, duo, trio, quartet, sextet and beyond. T: 0759 0489 940

Red Carpet Cars UK

Wedding Car Hire Exclusive wedding car hire offering a modern alternative to traditional, older cars, the Rolls Royce Ghost and Jaguar XJL Portfolio are two of their finest, luxury vehicles and provide that signature classy look whilst boasting a modern, sleek interior. T: 01244 980 888

Candystripe Productions

Videographer With over 13 years’ experience Candystripe Productions offer their clients the perfect packages, including the use of drone videography. T: 07921 462 866

Kate Mayo Wedding Photography Photographer Kate’s wedding photography prices and packages are designed to give you the maximum coverage out of your wedding day in the knowledge that you’ll get a fabulous suite of photographs to cherish forever. T: 07743 856 113 E:

The Red Rose Cake Company Bespoke Cake Baker Based in the retail village at The Plassy tucked into the North Wales countryside Red Rose Cake Company create bespoke wedding cakes to wow your guests. T: 07540 386 991 E:


Vivaldi Flowers

Wedding Florist With over 30 years’ experience, Vivaldi Flowers provide a luxury service with the best quality flowers. T: 07545597259

We work with a host of iconic wedding venues across the North West and North Wales and can coordinate the perfect setting to your perfect day. Already found your location? We are experts at providing outdoor catering and will work collaboratively with you, to deliver memorable culinary moments for your wedding party.

01244 304 660

ENTERTAIN. ENJOY. EXPERIENCE MANCHESTER ARENA IS ONE OF THE LARGEST AND MOST PRESTIGIOUS ARENAS IN THE WORLD, SO IT’S ONLY RIGHT THAT WE OFFER A CONCERT EXPERIENCE LIKE NO OTHER! See the biggest & the best, live from the Arena’s luxurious premium hospitality zone. ‘The Prime Experience’ is perfect for wowing clients or rewarding staff with the best seats in the house! Secure one of our luxurious arena suites, either annually or for a single event and experience the very best Manchester has to offer, or gain unprecedented access to the best seats in the house by becoming a prime seat member. contact:

Art Deco



Discover Deco elegance

with the latest collaboration from Coco de Mer and the V&A. Explore the escapism of the Jazz Age and get friendly with your inner film star with this 21-piece collection. Featuring three design stories across a selection of lingerie styles including bodysuits, slips, plunge bras, and an eye mask. Crafted from silk satin and the finest lace, all pieces are made using the highest quality fabrics and produced in Portugal. Bedroom only eye masks start at £65, while a “wear it for a minute’ robe is £495. We are lusting now — available Spring 2019. Price - Available on request


B Balmain

Sometimes a brand evokes a memory, a feeling and even an emotion without us even realising it. In one fell swoop, the brand Balmain has changed entirely for the first time in 80 years. It may just be the changing shape of its iconic B, but it’s a relevant and muchrequired update circa 2019.


Sir Silk

Featuring a timeless print in classic hues, these Derek Rose boxer shorts are crafted in England from sumptuous silk. Lending a lavish touch to any gentleman’s underwear edit, they are styled with an elasticated waist and magnetic fastening for ultimate comfort. Multiprint Silk Boxer £105, Navy Silk Boxer £115

Cinderella Rockafella Stride forward into Spring with these statement heels, by Midnight 00. These Italian footwear genius are making a storm amongst the trend trailblazers including Saoirse Ronan, our muse for SS’19. Shell polka-dot PVC and tulle pumps £865.

Va Va Vintage

With Chanel declaring it will no longer be using exotic animal skins in its leatherwear, we can forecast a cloud of change incoming. With their stunning python Boy bags no longer and Hermes, Fendi, Gucci et al. soon to follow suit, we suggest a trip to Europe to get away from the madness. Find your high-end vintage gem in the super-cool Nine Streets at Etoile Luxury Vintage or shop online. Reestraat 24, Amsterdam, Netherlands.


The CHESHIRE Magazine | Style

3 of the


Invite in the love this Valentines with our hot red poker picks of the best for date night Alexander McQueen Double breasted asymmetric blazer £2,345

Oh Stella Born from a dynasty of talent, Stella McCartney is one designer who certainly hasn’t risen on her family coattails. This season is no different. We love her prolific use of white, our go-to festival and night out accompaniment - fringing, and best of all, it’s vegan. Poppy Delevingne wears Transparent Ankle Boot £565

Stuck in the Trench Spring. Tick. Rain. Tick. Burberry. Tick. It’s inbred with us as Britons to lust after the lure of the camel waterproof about this time of year. Update it in 2019 with a Vintage Green hue seen here and team it with your updated jeans and beware of soggy waist ties in the car door. Burberry Relaxed Fit Tropical Garbardine Trench Coat in Vintage Green £1,650

Gianvito Rossi Opera 105 Leather Strappy Sandals £900 Christopher Kane Red embellished crepe de chine dress £995

In The Jeans


Spring is almost here, and it’s time to ditch the tired, worn out denim staples you’ve had stowed in the cupboard and refresh your legwear ready for the new season ahead. Think drainpipe cut offs, bell-bottomed beauties and of course the straight leg model go to wear with your oversized blazer, kitten heels or those refreshed oversized pumps. Saint LaurentBlue distressed skinny jeans £475 Chloe High-Rise Flare £565 Redone Rise Ankle Crop Rigid Skinny Jeans £195


LEFT: F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Anaideia pajama shirt in printed silk. £789, F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Dioscuri pajama pant in cupro. £530 RIGHT: F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Menezio japanese inspired mini dress. £ 813


The CHESHIRE Magazine | Style



Playful street style stars have for some time now dared to dabble in the subtle art of wearing their pyjamas outdoors and whilst this is unacceptable for 99.9% of us, we have news for you. This year, decadence, sex, sass and bold blooms will have you stepping into Spring with a swagger like never before. Introducing, For Restless Sleepers - the only silky co-ord’s to wear right about now. Dress these beautiful SS’19 creations with hoards of stylish vintage jewellery for your Valentine’s date, wear daytime in Barbados until the sun comes back, or go uber luxe for your prewedding dinner. Whatever your pick, hike with a heel and embrace the elegance.


Style | The CHESHIRE Magazine

LEFT: F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Andromaca pajama coat dress in cotton. £1.212 RIGHT: F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Ananke safari style jacket in silk. £1.283, F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Tartaro pajama pant in cupro. £ 521


LEFT: F.R.S For Restless The CHESHIRE Magazine | Style Sleepers Armonia signature pajama jacket in silk. £858, F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Etere signature pajama pant in silk. £526 RIGHT: F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Roda signature long gown in silk. £1.147


Style | The CHESHIRE Magazine

LEFT: F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Alethia pajama shirt in cupro. £645, F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Zelos pajama pant in silk. £576 RIGHT: F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Galene pajama dress in cupro. £898, F.R.S For Restless Sleepers Tartaro signature pajama pant in silk. £ 547




Temperley London Roland Mouret Elie Tahari Tory Burch Milly BluMarine Twinset Melissa Odabash Maison Common Max et Moi Marc Cain D.Exterior SportMax Nicole Miller Paul Smith Chiara Boni Hale Bob AND MANY MORE ®

50A High Street, TARPORLEY, Cheshire CW6 0AG 01829 733251 Visit and sign up for blogs, news, and offers. Like our Facebook page to receive updates and titbits. Opening hours: Monday to Saturday 10:00–17:30 Evenings & Sundays by appointment.


ENGLISH ROSE Following the success of the Limited Edition Pro-Collagen Rose Cleansing Balm, we are delighted that Elemis has decided to make this a staple part of their product range. The powerful cleanser easily dissolves make-up and daily grime for a soft and glowing complexion. The product feels lovely and also smells amazing making it the daily routine of removing makeup that bit nicer! £43,

Health &

Beauty news

February is the start of the new year, new me and the month for romance, so we have chosen some of the best beauty products and treatments to help you get in the resolution approved mood for flirtation and fun TRIED AND TESTED


FACIAL WORKOUT This instrument looks a little daunting but think of it as a powerplate for your face. Your face has tens of thousands of small muscle fibres that, over time, become weak and lose their elasticity. The FaceGym pro device applies mild yet forceful electrical muscle stimulation to the face, strengthening the muscle to visibly tone and tighten in as little as 10 mins. After a few goes we have noticed a difference though it will be interesting to see if the results improve with use. Definitely worth a try! Facegym pro £429


KISSABLE LIPS Kissable red lips are a must for Valentine’s day and this Selfridges exclusive, Huda Beauty’s limited-edition Lip Tin is perfect. Start by shaping the lips with the delicately muted red-toned shade and then fill in with the rich gold and pink pearls of the Saucy Lip Strobe to create a glittering finish that’s perfect for that romantic evening. £29,

CUSHION YOURSELF La Mer introduces the new Luminous Lifting Cushion Foundation SPF 20 for portable touch-ups on-the-go. This fresh, lightweight formula gives the skin for a healthy, glowing look and feel. The weightless texture is fresh and hydrating with a “second skin” feel and importantly the colour stays true all day long. If you need a bit more coverage in the evening then this wonderful foundation can build coverage. A fabulous addition to the collection! RRP £90,

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Regulars


Ask the



WHAT DO YOU THINK WILL BE THE KEY HEALTH AND BEAUTY TRENDS THIS YEAR? This year will be all about brands who have strong stories around clean beauty and wellness. In particular emphasis on sleep and products which encourage restfulness. Trends for glossy, glass like skin continues with trend for skin care and make up hybrid formulas. ARE THERE ANY NEW BRANDS WE SHOULD BE LOOKING OUT FOR? There will be some exciting new fragrance brands and scents launching within Selfridges next year including Gucci’s Alchemist’s Garden, Majan and Memoize.

FOR HIM FRENCH LOVER, E D I T I O N S D E PA R F U M S FREDERIC MALLE The ultimate Mans’ fragrance, a sophisticated, green, woody, amber scent with a seductive twist of leather. Effortlessly stylish, unmistakably masculine. £170 (100ml) Pulse Of Perfumery - Knutsford

FOR HER PORTRAIT OF A LADY - EDITIONS D E PA R F U M S F R E D E R I C M A L L E . An exceptional olfactive symphony of Turkish Rose absolute and the deep sensuality of Patchouli, as lavish as a couture gown. £235 (100ml) Pulse Of Perfumery - Knutsford


SERUMS Beautiful skin is our obsession so we’ve chosen some of the best serums to add to your beauty routine. Get glowing!

WHAT PRODUCTS DO YOU TIP TO BE THE HERO PRODUCT THIS YEAR? We have lots of launches which we believe will become some of our hero products which at this stage we can’t discuss (keep an eye on our Instagram for updates) however we will continue to see items such as the Charlotte Tilbury Magic Away Concealer and Dyson’s Airwrap continue to do amazingly well. IS THERE A TREND IN MEN’S BEAUTY? Men’s beauty is becoming increasingly popular, we have recently launched a dedicated men’s grooming area within our Men’s Fashion Floor in London and online which includes everything from grooming products, fake tans to men’s makeup. Men are buying into complexion and brows – some of our best sellers are also sheet and peel masks, whilst targeted solutions such as eye gels are creams are also on the increase.

Crème de la Mer The Serum Essence This serum from the cult brand Crème de la Mer is the ultimate serum rejuvenating and dramatically improving skin. Expensive but worth every penny. £445

NIOD Copper Amino Isolate Activator This blue liquid has quickly gained cult status for its ability to radically improve skin in a short time and is part of our daily routine. £60 for 30ml

Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair Serum This classic is a favourite with many, including us, and helps you to wake up with a fresh glow. £55 for 30ml www.harvey 67

Style | The CHESHIRE Magazine


GIVE ME A BREAK Kathryn Otto indulged in The Spa at Hale Country Club’s 60 minute tailor made treatment


mpressively situated across 20 acres of idyllic land in Cheshire, Hale Country Club and Spa provides its 5,000 + members and Spa Day guests with state-of-the-art fitness, leisure, spa and beauty facilities. The Hut Group, one of the world’s largest online beauty and wellbeing businesses, acquired Hale Country Club in 2016 and has invested over £8.5 million since - in the Club’s state of the art facilities and in land and surrounding outbuildings. Over the last year, THG has continued to invest in improving the member


To start I had the back exfoliation as I was advised it was a good beginner before a massage to buff off any dead skin cells and exfoliate those hard to reach areas. It also preps your skin for the massage as your skin absorbs the oil. For my “main event” I opted for a muscle-ease back massage. This is a condensed massage, targeting tension related headaches and neck strain. Entirely focused to your needs, it included effective stretching movements which loosen and restore suppleness and motion to tight limbs, stiff joints and knotted muscles. To finish my treatments, I opted for the Elemis Hydra gel eye mask which helps soothe tired eyes and reduces the appearance of fine lines & wrinkles. The whole experience was incredible, and I left feeling fresh, relaxed and rejuvenated. Visit the ultimate destination to relax and unwind amongst absolute bliss and treat yourself to a pampering day at the refined retreat of Hale Country Club and Spa. This package is £105 for members and £125 for non-members. For all membership options, please email the club directly at memberships@ or call 0161 904 5939

Over the last year, THG has continued to invest in improving the member experience experience, upgrading the facilities throughout; including the Restaurant and Bar areas, outdoor space and most recently, the changing facilities. 2019 will mark further investments in the Club with upgrades to the thermal suite and a new, stainless steel infinity pool. When I arrived, the team were incredibly welcoming and sat me down to talk through the treatments on offer, and the benefits from each. I made my choices and went into the treatment room.

House of Evelyn is Manchester’s temple of hair & beauty. An oasis of elegance and well-being. A celebration of looking and feeling fabulous.




EVELYN, 40 Spring Gardens,

+44 (0)161 302 8822

Manchester, M2 1EN


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When commercial assets meet the personal life... “The majority of people don’t really plan well enough for the future,” said Nathaniel Groarke, Manchester Family Law Partner at Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth. “We deal with financial situations where people haven’t really thought this will happen to them.”


usinesses can be put at risk by far more personal matters, which is why Groarke urges business owners to plan carefully. “Being in a firm like this where we have such a big and wide ranging business team, there is much more of a focus on acting for people with business interests.” “It is best to be involved right at the beginning of the story,” said Groarke, “You have to untangle so much, particularly if a couple are in business together or family assets are involved. For example, an up and coming entrepreneur who is doing really well and the business is flying - they don’t necessarily think that in 15 years’ time they might be sitting down talking about whether their current partner will get a share of the business they have built.” Groarke continued: “As business owners, having to extract that money means implications for the business. How are they going to get it out of the business? Then it’s getting to the bottom of what the business is worth and other things which are massively disruptive.” Groarke notes the high profile divorce of Asos founder Nick Robertson, forcing him to sell 1.3m shares through a placing with institutional investors last year to fund his £70m divorce settlement. The judge was asked to decide how much Robertson’s ex-wife Janine should receive after they failed to come to an agreement on the division of shares and property owned by the entrepreneur, which took Asos from a £12m company when it floated on AIM in 2001, to a £3bn company today. Stories like that of the former Asos chief executive are the stuff of nightmares for entrepreneurs and successful businesspeople alike, but it is not often that they think about the situation early enough to mitigate it.


“This is not going to happen to everyone,” said Groarke, “but on a more moderate level that happens to a lot of people, preparation in any event is therefore key. “We need to discuss how they want to structure the business; when setting up home with someone, having a cohabitation agreement; how to manage finances, to think about having the right shareholder agreements for instance. Much of what we do centres around providing a sense of stability and knowledge for clients going through that situation when the relationship does break down. “In terms of planning, the main thing is getting people to think about prenuptial agreements. As advisors now we must be talking about at least the option of a prenup to all our clients but especially the entrepreneurial ones. “People were sceptical about them in previous years, that they would even have an effect, but the law has moved on massively in the past five years.” The case of German paper company heiress Katrin Radmacher in 2010 made that clear, after the UK Supreme Court ruled that the Husband should be bound by his prenuptial agreement, giving very strong guidance on how prenups should be viewed. “It gave people reassurance, and meant that we can be a bit more definite that they will benefit from having a prenup in place,” Groarke said. Separation and divorce is going to represent a significant change to you and your family, especially if there is a business involved. Irwin Mitchell Private Wealth offer unrivalled guidance and methods to support you whatever the circumstance, help you plan appropriately and make the right decisions at the right time. Contact Nathaniel on 0370 1500 100 Extension: 2350 or

Drive Scandi COOL

With the best will

in the world, SUVs are often a bit unnecessary. If all you need is a big-booted family car that won’t get stuck in the snow, then this is where the smart money is going. To create the V60 Cross Country, Volvo simply added four-wheel drive, some chunky bumpers and a bit of ground clearance to its brilliant V60 estate. It’s a gorgeous-looking thing, and it offers all the space and capability of a 4x4 without any of the drawbacks. Rybrook Chester,



Keeping you up to date with all the latest motoring and technology news WORDS: JAMES FOSSDYKE

ALL THE RANGE It might look familiar, but the smallest Range Rover has some big ideas


ew cars have survived the test of time like the Range Rover Evoque. Even now, some eight years since the first examples trundled out of the factory gates, they’re still selling like the proverbial warm bakery items. Nevertheless, time and tide wait for no small SUV, and now there’s a new Evoque on the horizon. From the outside, it looks much the same as its predecessor, albeit with a few new touches. The squinting headlights and flush pop-out door handles have come straight from the larger Velar, but the silhouette is largely unchanged.


Don’t be fooled by this conservatism, though. Inside, there’s a more spacious, more tactile cabin, complete with a high-tech multi-touchscreen control panel, while a clever camera allows the driver to use the rear-view mirror even if the boot is full of luggage. Under the skin, new underpinnings allow for high-tech powertrains, and all but the entry-level diesel engines use mild-hybrid technology to improve fuel consumption. A plug-in hybrid, which will allow all-electric running for short and medium-length journeys, is expected to follow in about a year. The new Evoque is already available to order, with prices starting at £31,600.

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Motoring

Beauty and the BEAST The world’s roads may be awash with stunning sports coupes, but few can turn as many heads as the Mercedes-AMG GT. Now four years old, the Porsche 911 rival has undergone a little cosmetic surgery to keep it at the top of its game. There’s a new steering wheel, and digital screens have replaced the traditional instrument dials, but the sweeping curves remain - as does the 4.0-litre twin-turbo V8. In ‘entrylevel’ form, it’ll produce a substantial 469bhp, but the top-spec GT R model ups the ante with a massive 577bhp.


FIVE STAR When a new X5 comes along, you know exactly what to expect. It’ll be massive, but surprisingly pleasant to drive, and it’ll look like… well, this. But BMW has been evolving its big SUV, and this latest version represents the pinnacle of the brand’s engineering know-how. There’s a digital dashboard as standard, and an optional off-road pack makes it more capable on the rough stuff. A 3.0-litre twin-turbo diesel engine comes as standard, but the range-topping M50d model adds another two turbochargers to produce 394bhp.


Drive | The CHESHIRE Magazine

Ooh, La La! If you’re bored of Germany’s dull-but-worthy SUV offerings, should France be your next port of call, James Fossdyke suggests why.


very facet of life has its homeland - a go-to nation that will provide the very best of whatever it is you desire. If you want clothes, you go to Italy, and if you want a watch, you go to Switzerland. In the case of chocolate, Belgium should be your destination of choice, while steaks have to be sourced from Argentina. Unless it’s a lamb steak, in which case you should head for New Zealand. For pretty much anything else, though, France gets my vote. Wine, cheese and romantic getaways are all the better on the other side of the Channel, and they’ll lay on a pretty good ski holiday too. And that’s before we mention their impressively effective industrial action and cheap, utilitarian transport for the masses. Now, though, a Parisian company has decided that France - and particularly its capital - should be the home of luxury cars. That brave organisation is called DS Automobiles, and if the name sounds familiar, that’s because it used to be part of Citroen. In the 1960s, the DS badge adorned curvy, comfortable saloons, and it returned in the late 2000s on small, stylish hatchbacks. But those days are gone. DS has shuffled out from under Citroen’s skirts and had a crack at making its first standalone product. It’s an SUV called the DS 7 Crossback, and it’s designed to rival the Audi Q5 and Mercedes-Benz GLC. That’s a tough ask, but DS has cracked it on the styling front. The 7’s big grille is perhaps a little too Audi-ish, but the rest of it is stellar. The headlights form narrowed, concentrated eyes, and the curved boot gives it a pert rear, set off by the gorgeous tail lights. It’s even better inside, where boring, conventional buttons are more or less

consigned to the scrapheap. Instead, you get a massive central touchscreen that houses most of the basic functions, with just a few touchsensitive ‘hotkeys’ across the bottom. There are some buttons on the centre console and steering wheel, but for the most part, it’s all done on that huge screen. Actually, I should probably say those ‘huge’ screens, because the DS also gets a digital instrument display that can be configured to your taste. And when night falls, the screen can be switched to a cool infra-red camera display

“The big seats will cuddle you and the seat 74

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Drive

that ‘sees’ around 300 metres down the road - well beyond the reach of the LED headlights. It’s all very high-tech and very clever, but as with so many French cars, it’s also a lesson in how not to do in-car ergonomics. None of the switches are where you expect them to be and changing the climate control settings requires an MSc in software engineering, but you can

massaging system will knead away the stress” 75

Drive | The CHESHIRE Magazine

DS 7 Crossback Ultra Prestige BlueHDi 180 Engine: 2.0-litre turbodiesel Power: 178bhp 0-62mph: 9.9 seconds Top speed: 134mph Price: £44,120

forgive all that when you settle into the soft leather seats, fire up the engine and watch the BRM clock swivel into position. The engine that lies behind that clock will differ depending on where you see the best balance of price, efficiency and power, but the range effectively comprises a 1.6-litre petrol engine and a 2.0-litre diesel, both of which are offered in a variety of guises. My test car came with the 2.0-litre, 178bhp diesel engine, which came with an eight-speed automatic gearbox and felt more sprightly than its 134mph top speed might suggest. There’s nothing sporty about the DS, though. Unlike a Porsche Macan, which hunkers down like a fast saloon, the 7 feels big and wafty and soft. It’s a bit like an automotive teddy bear. You can drive it quickly - it even has a sport mode but it doesn’t encourage you. Instead, it prefers serene motorway cruising, where the big seats will cuddle you and the seat massaging system will knead away the stress. It really is a relaxing car to drive, and the host of onboard gadgets make you feel as though you’re being pampered by the maître d’ at a luxury hotel. The car scans the road in front and constantly re-tunes the suspension to give you the most comfortable ride possible, while the cruise control is perpetually adjusting itself to maintain a safe distance between you and the car in front. If it slows down, you slow


“The screen can be switched to a cool infra-red camera display that ‘sees’ around 300 metres down the road” down — no need to touch the pedals at all. It’s a bit over-cautious at times, but it’s worth its weight in gold when you’re stuck in dawdling motorway traffic. There are chinks in the Crossbacks luxury armour, though. Unless you wait for the plug-in hybrid version to arrive later this year, you can’t have four-wheel drive. That won’t bother most drivers, but it does limit the car’s ability in snowy or muddy conditions. It won’t be as efficient as you’d hoped, either. My test car claimed to be capable of 57.6mpg, but it struggled to better 40 on a mix of motorways and urban roads. On the whole, though, the DS is a charming alternative to its German rivals. It can’t quite match them for build quality or capability, but it’s more stylish, more characterful and more unique. So if you’re fed up of the dull, uninspiring offerings provided by the usual BMW/Audi/Mercedes suspects, perhaps France really does have the answer.


1 2 TH A N N I V E R S A RY • 1 1 TH J U LY 2 0 1 9 T H E M E R E G O L F & S PA R E S O RT Over the past 11 years, we have continuously been amazed by the generous support of everyone involved in our annual Summer Swing event, helping us to raise an incredible £827,500 for the St. James’s Place Charitable Foundation. This year we are looking to make ‘One Moment in Time’ a year to remember, delivering an event which is bigger and better than ever before, aiming to break through the £1 million pounds raised mark! This incredible day will be hosted at The Mere Golf and Spa Resort in Knutsford. The day will start with a picturesque round of golf before an unforgettable gala dinner followed by an evening of fundraising, entertainment and music.

TICKETS AND SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES ARE AVAILABLE NOW We look forward to seeing you and there and thank you for your support.

W W W. F F M S U M M E R S W I N G . C O . U K

Luxury Home Fragrance

Travel Air Cruise Collection

has announced a new tour which will see UK travellers explore seven countries in 17 days by private plane. Named Pearls of the Orient, it has been labelled an “air cruise” and will depart from London on 6 November 2020 and take guests to Jordan, India, Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia, Maldives and UAE. Voyagers will experience business class quality travel and all flights are during the daytime, ensuring that travellers can enjoy the experiences on offer to the fullest – everything from Lawrence of Arabia-style dinners in Jordan to seeing cascading waterfalls along the Mekong River. Accommodation will be the very best in every location, with featured hotels including the Oberoi Amarvilas Resort in Agra – which is only 600 metres from the Taj Mahal. Starting from £39,950,


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Food, Glorious Food

Hotel du Collectionneur in Paris has announced the reopening of its restaurant, Le Collectionneur, after a year and a half of renovations. Following their father’s footsteps in the hospitality industry, Andrea and Edouard Cohen have combined their passion for creativity and design to renovate the restaurant, which reflects their enthusiasm for art. The restaurant features Art Deco interior design, with an extraordinary 16-metre transversal sculpture of blended sycamore at the entrance and a mixture of gold, silver and bronze tones, representing a magpie’s treasure, which is the eatery’s emblem. Spanning across three terraces, a bar area and three private dining spaces, chefs Joel Veyssière and Nicolas Amelin oversee the menus which focus on fresh, seasonal dishes. 80


New on the Block

The Dixon has opened its doors as a boutique hotel. Combining the old and the new, the hotel highlights its heritage as Tower Bridge’s former Magistrate’s Court and police station, as well as showcasing modern art from local artists in one of London’s most creative corners. Design details include restored cells and courthouse furniture in the restaurant and old cell keys recreated into artwork, echoing the building’s past incarnation. Located on Tooley Street, it spotlights local culture, art and design.

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Great British Escape

If you’re looking for your next break, then why not take a peek at Pearle Oban in Scotland? Most of the hotel’s 60 rooms look out onto Oban Bay and the mountains of Mull and Ardgour, and it’s only a one-minute walk to the beach. Featuring a café, bar and brand-new restaurant, it’s ideal for foodies too – it’s BAAB Grill opened last year and brings the flavours of eastern Mediterranean cuisine to this renowned fishing port. Dishes are a mixture of recipes from Greece, Turkey and the Levant, and are designed to be shared. Sharing is caring, after all. From £119,

Blurring the Boundaries

Spice of Life


Although Christmas is well and truly over, make the most of the final winter months with a visit to Gilpin Hotel & Lake House in Windermere. Its new Après Spice Dome is perfect for pre- or postdinner drinks and features its own bar, wood-burning stove and snug seating, creating a cosy and wintry atmosphere. Snuggle up to your loved ones while sipping cocktails.

Celebrity Cruises has unveiled its latest liner: Celebrity Edge. Its outward-facing design connects guests to the ocean more closely than ever before and offers a new element to cruising for the discerning traveller. Features include open-air plunge pools with 270-degree views, an outdoor Rooftop Garden, and a Magic Carpet suspended from the side of the ship, which is the only place to peloton bike race at sea.

Home Away From Home

Award-winning boutique hotel brand Dakota will open a luxury hotel in Manchester in May 2019. Situated on Ducie Street, it will bring some of the largest hotel rooms and suites to the city. Featuring a Champagne Bar and a custom-designed cigar garden, it will bring a touch of Mayfair to Manchester.


Arabian Cruise

We visited Dubai, Qatar, Abu Dhabi and Oman before returning back home to Manchester. It was great to be able to see so many different places and experience the culture. and cuisine of somewhere I had not been before. Going off in to the desert in Qatar is something I won’t forget. I would recommend going as a couple although Dubai would be good for families with so many things to see and do.

Ian Cottrill Franklyn Financial Management Ltd 81


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The Resort at the

Heart of the Giant 3 Valleys Aaron Fawcett took a group of friends to the slopes and spent a week in the stunning Meribel valleys


he Lightbowne is set to become one of the hottest, most spacious luxury ski chalets that Meribel and the Trois Vallées has to offer so when the opportunity to stay there at the start of this winter season was presented to me I jumped at it. TG Ski have a portfolio of luxury chalets in Meribel and Morzine, with a UK concierge team based in their offices in Wilmslow. Their experienced staff ran through my groups requirements prior to our stay and helped organise everything from airport transfers, ski hire, ski lessons and even a consultation with their chef to work round some of the groups dietary requirements. This attention to detail prior to arrival filled us with confidence for the stay ahead, it also helped build excitement and expectation for the trip and furthermore ensured that once we arrived there was no scrambling around trying to organise things last minute, which we had experienced on package style ski holidays in the past. TG Ski’s Managing Director Tom MarleyShaw, elaborated to us on the companies ethos

and drive – “we have developed a range of boutique luxury properties to suit the aspirations of our guests, our service must match this, so we focus on high quality food, wine and standards within our chalets, all of which is delivered by professional, dedicated and motivated individuals. Everyone within the business is focussed on delivering a fantastic experience at every stage of our guest’s journey”. Our visit to The Lightbowne started with a short flight between Manchester and Geneva. The resort of Meribel is easily accessible from Geneva airport and TG Ski organised our private transfer where we were met in the arrivals hall and whisked in a top of the range minibus (with wifi and ipads) from the airport to the chalet door in just over 2 hours. Arriving at the chalet the understated exterior unfolds into a design aficionados dream. Newly renovated, its seriously stylish interior design combines a modern Victorian interior with an uber-cool West End private members’ club. It’s a look and style rooted in tradition but with the most tantalising contemporary twists - offering a totally 83

unexpected and unique take on what you would expect from Alpine ski accommodation. Located in the intimate area of Mussillon within walking distance of the centre of Meribel - The Lightbowne’s six luxuriously cool master bedroom suites sleep 12, with space for an additional two guests in a further bedroom that leads from the largest suite. My suite was extremely spacious, stunningly lit and incredibly comfortable. Candles were lit each night around the free-standing bath tub, which was too inviting not to indulge in. Each evening my room was seamlessly turned down by the staff, with a handmade chocolate left on the pillow. The chalets hidden gem and a god-send for us at the end of a hard days skiing was the chalets private spa. The lower ground floor is devoted to health and wellbeing, providing a wet room with a huge 10-person sauna and a sizeable sunken hot tub, which combined with 84

the Sonos sound system and the chalet staff bringing us afternoon tea (and Champagne!) made me and my guests feel like royalty. We were also treated to pampering and beauty treatments courtesy of a fully-trained in-house therapist in a private massage room. The Lightbowne offers the most stunning panoramic views across the Méribel valley. I loved the lounge area with it’s large fireplace and sumptuous sofas which opened out onto a south facing terrace. Curling up with champagne, cocktail or mocktail prepared by our private host was the ultimate treat at the end of a long day on the slopes The expansive dining room is dominated by a large hard-wood dining table seating up to 14 guests, the lighting and sound system helped create the perfect ambiance for our evening meals in the chalet. The fine dining meals, created by our private chef Lewis were on a level which far exceeded our expectations. We were treated to gastronomic tasting menus each evening, Lewis’ experience within restaurants, private yachts and chalets was evident in the quality and quantity of his menu design. Each meal had incredible flavour and left us with just enough room to do battle with the selection of local cheeses. The chalet manager John, acted as maître d’, coordinating the service and ensuring that each course was paired with a new fine wine. Each evening felt like we were dining out in a high class restaurant, but had the informality of our own home. The chalet also features two chalet hosts and a driver, with a commitment to helping us have

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the best break. Our hosts Jamal and Anna, both scholars were a delight and the constant smiles and attentiveness never felt fake. Our driver Jack was mature with a great sense of humour and was only a phone call away to help us get to and from the slopes. For those new to the Meribel valley, it offers exceptional skiing in it’s own right, which when combined with the Courchevel and Val Thorens valleys creates arguably the best linked ski area in the world. The legendary skiing of Les Trois Vallees/3 Valleys is complimented by the first class facilities, chic bars, Michelin-starred restaurants and infamous aprés ski, making this the perfect destination for groups of all ages.

We had a range of ski abilities within our group and prior to our arrival the TG Ski team were able to organise any lesson requirements. They took the time to understand the different skill levels within the group and ensured that we had the right level of instruction. For the more experienced skiers in the group, we had a consultation with the chalet team on our first night which gave us a great itinerary to follow and they even pointed out great bar or restaurant spots to stop at along the way. Their experience here certainly prevents the usual arguments about getting lost or where to stop for our mountain lunch. TG Ski also assisted with our in-chalet ski fitting, our skis, boots, poles and helmets were waiting for us at the chalet on our arrival. Once we had settled in and at a convenient time, the ski technicians visited to fit us. Having spent countless days queuing in busy shops this service was so stress-free and seamless. The team overall couldn’t do enough for us, and returning home was a huge comedown for everyone as the reality of cooking for ourselves and not having our own private team running around after us set in. TG Ski seem to have created something special in their guest experience, staff and service and in The Lightbowne have a very unique property that all snow hounds should aspire to. This stay is exclusively available through independent tour operator TG Ski, who provide professional chef, chalet manager, host and a private driver. Prices range from £22,500£45,000 for seven nights. At the time of writing there were limited weeks available for this winter, but TG Ski are also taking bookings for winter 19/20. For further information on The Lightbowne, visit For further booking enquiries, contact TG Ski on (t) 01625 400060 or email 85

Our stylish resort has been specifically tailored with luxurious amenities, for your ultimate comfort and relaxation. Overflowing with Mediterranean simplicity and heartwarming hospitality, our facilities and accommodation are teamed with contemporary decor, traditional elements and a luxurious finish, creating the most unforgettable stay. PREOPENING ADDED VALUE OF UP TO 15% OFF ANY ACCOMMODATION TYPE BOOKED BY 28TH FEBRUARY 2019. TERMS & CONDITIONS APPLY*



ABU DHABI Kat Hannon exchanged the dull skies of Cheshire for a luxury break in Abu Dhabi.


nticipating a trip to somewhere unknown to me is very exciting and keeps my mind open to new discoveries. Abu Dhabi did not disappoint. I stayed on Saadiyat Island just minutes away from the Abu Dhabi International Airport. The Island is set along the beautiful Arabian Gulf Coast with long stretches of white beach sands with a turquoise blue sea and sky to match. Dubbed as Dubai’s older, more sophisticated and cultured sister, Abu Dhabi is currently developing a heritage project, visualising culture through museums and art and establishing a high-end luxury experience for leisure and for visitors whilst maintaining natural habitats for local turtles. Making this the next sought-after destination.

Saadiyat Island runs along the coast, only an hours drive West of Dubai. The landscape is home to Hawkesbill Turtles, currently in a protection scheme to keep them in their habitat. The natural surroundings, beach front and luxury living space has merged together beautifully at Rixos Saadiyat Island Hotel. Rixos Hotel Opulence, diamonds, and sparkle is in abundance throughout the Rixos Saadiyat, with a grand entrance of marble and crystal, and the most impressive interior design and architecture, from floor to ceiling. As you walk through there is a stunning colour palette of blue, green and gold that emerge from the neutral tones. An occasional flash of pink in accessories and seating areas add an element of fun. The sumptuous design of my deluxe room had an immediate impact. The hotel’s designers have created a sensational mix of emerald green marble walls and floors with gold finishings, which added to my already relaxed state of mind. The view from the balcony was of a most perfect sea and I was delighted to arrive to such a divine setting.


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Family A huge surprise for me was how well the Rixos Saadiyat catered for families. I am a mother of two, with an energetic 5 year old and a curious 10 month old so find myself looking, (often without meaning to) for facilities for children, and check the flow of the stay and how this would be good for me and my bunch. The all-inclusive experience means there is no messing around with room numbers and wallets. Instantly my load is lightened. Both the quality of the food and the selection was incredible. Whether you are pescatarian, vegan, want a light meal or go for a full 3 course breakfast, catering have thought of it all. I even tried a new fruit to my palette, a mangosteen, which was so juicy it literally burst in my mouth. Delightful. Dining at Rixos Saadiyat was another adventure with 5 restaurants to choose from, ranging from Japanese to Italian and traditional Turkish cuisine. It was hard to decide, but luckily it was all planned out for me so I just had to turn up. The quality of food blew me away and the hotel fully catered for my gluten free and vegan


friends. The Italian restaurant at the hotel even brought out Chef to talk us through dishes and options, which really enriched the dining experience. A mega plus for Rixos Saadiyat is the children’s facilities on offer as they have their own water park with an exclusive wave machine next to it. This is not just your average a slide and an elephant in the water, but an entire water park. Big kids can play safely and little kids can paddle nicely. They also have a lovely children’s day centre filled with great playrooms and more importantly lovely staff. Now, if you are wise enough to make really good use of the children’s centre you will be wise enough to book a spa treatment whilst the kids are at play. A sanctuary for all who appreciate wellness and relaxation, the Turkish-inspired spa revels in a vast choice of luxurious treatments that are created to revitalise and balance the mind, body and spirit. The spa specialises in the traditional hammam treatment as well as offering manicures and pedicures, body wraps, exfoliation and facials. Available facilities include a steam room, a jacuzzi and a beauty salon but also a super special hot stone. Literally a large hot stone that you lie on and it gives a deep heat into your body. Heavenly. Rixos Saadiyat’s pool area is in prime position next to the beach. It boasts a large family pool, with a pool bar immersed in the water, just to give you the full holiday experience. The walk from hotel to beach is barely one minute and you are transported to a tranquil view of the Arabian Gulf. Paddle boards are available to take

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out to sea and the sun beds are all inclusive. It is little touches like this that makes it extra special.

When In Abu Dhabi Dune bashing will be at the top of the list. I’d say this isn’t one for the kids and a little risky for those who get travel sick. But if you do manage to book an experience like this, taking a 4x4 into the dunes is extra special. For me, it wasn’t so much the thrill of driving over dunes that captured my attention but when we stopped to take in the view of the vast dunes that went for miles and miles into the distance. It gave me a real sense of perspective. I am so glad to have experienced this part of the world. Another out of this world experience is the Louvre, Abu Dhabi. The museum hosts art history throughout the ages as well as a comprehensive contemporary art collection but the Louvre itself is an enormous piece of the Abu Dhabi show. A huge piece of beautiful architecture in a truly amazing setting. The Architect Jean Nouvel should be proud. The domed roof weighs 7,500 tonnes and was made from the same quantity of steel used to make the Eiffel Tower. The design of overlapping steel serves many purposes, one of which is to feature the ‘rain of light’; the holes let light into the structure creating a magical experience. The dome also acts as a microclimate canopy, as well as being of reflective material that helps to keep the building cool. Super clever and amazing to walk under. The building underneath this gargantuan

design is created in more layers forming platforms and steps into the water. The picture will tell it all but it’s a must see during your stay. For me, the Shaikh Zayed Grand Mosque in Abu Dhabi at dusk was like something only seen in films. The largest mosque in the country, the Grand Mosque has perfectly made dome structures, nesting in the largest place of prayer I have ever been to. There is no holding back with the fantastical display of richness. The mosque is filled with huge chandeliers, 12 tonnes each, made with millions of Swarovksi crystals, and the walls are decorated with marble and mother of pearl. Visualising thousands of people in this space all at once was impossible. The place took my breath away and I left feeling I had experienced the unimaginable.


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hrough the ages mankind has experimented with water and its healing powers and also remained fascinated by its somewhat mythical properties. Since ancient times through varying cultures including the Egyptians, Pre-Hellenic civilizations and of course the Romans to name just a few, we have utilised the healing powers of thermal waters. Bathing was a ritual and social experience, with vast and beautiful public baths constructed with the finest of materials as a temple to bathing and the sacred waters within. One location with such a history based on wellness by water is Bad Ragaz. Since the discovery of thermal water at the Tamina Gorge in 1242 when two hunters from the Benedictine monastery in Pfäfers came upon warm water gushing from rocks, guests have visited Bad Ragaz to take advantage of the water’s healing properties. Grand Resort Bad Ragaz is strategically placed to make the best use of this. Renowned as Europe’s leading medical health and wellbeing resort, Grand Resort Bad Ragaz encompasses 12,800 square metres of spa space, a medical centre with more than 70 doctors and therapists specialising in a variety of fields and a dedicated rehabilitation clinic. The thermal water forms the basis for a number of treatments and therapies at the resort. Nestled amidst the foothills of the Alps in Eastern Switzerland, it is just an hour’s drive from Zurich and the perfect destination for a romantic weekend filled with relaxation. We wished to take in as much of the healing power of the thermal waters as possible and chose to stay at one of two five-star establishments which make up Grand Resort Bad Ragaz, the Grand Hotel Quellenhof & Spa Suites and the Grand Hotel Hof Ragaz. We chose the modern, exclusive Spa Lofts Deluxe tower which houses the Spa Suites due to the additional privacy it offers due to a separate entrance and reception


weekend away

Grand Resort Bad Ragaz Switzerland Alexandra Delf thermal waters at a Swiss Sampling the healing Hastings Hotel ...Alexandra Delf immerses wellness escape, herself in a timeless bathing tradition

area. This area offers a comfortable and open space in which to relax, with one side dedicated to a bespoke water menu. This may sound unusual, as surely all water is created equal, however in this case, prepare to be educated. From the usual suspects including Evian and Perrier to Black Charcoal Water the water menu was a real revelation of not only taste but also an interesting insight into the properties of waters from around the world. In addition to stunning mountain views, the Spa Suites offer a private wellbeing oasis as you can enjoy the healing thermal waters at your leisure from the suite. The water coming directly into the Spa Suites is the 36.5°C warm, healing Ragazer thermal water. Grand Resort Bad Ragaz is vast and offers no less than seven

restaurants providing exquisite culinary delights, with a total of 59 Gault Millau points between them and one Michelin star, as well as a sushi takeaway, a bistro and a café. In addition, the resort also boasts two golf courses, a meeting and events centre, the public Tamina Therme thermal spa and even its own casino should the fancy take you. Every meal we had was outstanding, however we loved the traditional Swiss breakfast at Zollstube, hidden away from the main breakfast area which can get busy. This alternative breakfast option offers a more intimate breakfast experience which we went back to many times for a delicious start to the day. During our stay, wellness was very much the theme and we sampled two treatments, the magnesium massage and one of the exclusive haki® rituals in a brand-new, specially designed treatment suite. The magnesium massage was a deeply relaxing experience, however the haki® grounding ritual for couples was a totally unique treatment and ideal for a romantic break. Personally, the ideal weekend away should leave me ideally feeling balanced and centred from an emotional and physical perspective as well as offering an ideal opportunity to relax with my husband. The haki® rituals have been created with exactly that in mind. Featuring several steps the couple’s treatment we enjoyed involved a sensory room, the washing any of negative energy

away in the Rain Hall, a warm, full-body haki and a period of calm and creativity which we both found relaxing and balancing. Being surrounded by the beauty of the Swiss countryside we had to get out and explore and if you can drag yourself from the beauty of the resort, the town of Bad Ragaz has a lot to offer. We were there during Bad RagARTz which sees the largest sculpture park in Europe spring up throughout the grounds of Grand Resort Bad Ragaz and through the town. 2018 saw 450 sculptures by 77 artists from 17 countries. In addition, you can also take a trip to the nearby Tamina Gorge to see the source of the healing waters. The mystical gorge, which according to legend has housed dragons in the past, has been lit up over the last few years in celebration of the healing powers of the thermal waters. Known as Light Ragaz, cutting-edge technology is used to project 3D effects onto the gorge’s towering structures and formations. The nightly transformation of the 1,000-metre-long gorge takes guests on a visually stunning journey into the mystical world of spring water and the power of the elements. Interactive explanations of the history of the gorge are showcased alongside the legends surrounding it. The art installations change on a seasonal basis and it makes for a wonderful visit for all ages. Seeing the source of the thermal waters and the history behind it evokes a sense of wonder at the history of Bad Ragaz and the wealth of tradition behind the resort itself. However as always time marches on, and with it a fantastic selection of medi-spa offerings are now in place for those looking for something a little more than the traditional bathing rituals. Grand Resort Bad Ragaz is also due to undergo an extensive refurbishment in early 2019, to coincide with the resort’s 150th anniversary in July 2019. These planned developments will take five months to complete and we think this will be the perfect excuse to return for another romantic wellness escape to see the next phase of this storied property. For further information and reservations call +41 81 303 30 30 or visit


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Kathryn Otto explores Liverpool to see why it is one of the UK’s most visited cities Cocktails Rev De Cuba

Situated on the stunning Royal Albert Dock Liverpool, Revolucion de Cuba is a restaurant and rum bar serving up an array of delicious latin-inspired dishes and creative cocktails, with a new food and drink menu having recently launched. Unit 17, Albert Dock, Liverpool L3 4AF T: 0151 203 6101 W:

Brunch at Neighbourhood

If you’re looking for somewhere for social dining and a vibrant atmosphere, New York inspired Neighbourhood on the corner of Castle street is your go-to venue. Their all-day destination offers a global inspired sharing menu accompanied by trendsetting cocktails, before effortlessly morphing in to one of the UK’s hottest parties by night. 62 Castle St, Liverpool L2 7LQ T: 0151 230 1717 W:

Afternoon Tea Titanic

Think gentlemen in tails, ladies in long flowing dresses and elbow gloves, emerging from horse-drawn carriages. Though Titanic cannot guarantee all that, their afternoon tea at will be every bit as good and will have you yearning for another, more refined era, whatever your age. Soft music and light-filled spaces will take you back there. So let them serve you soft sandwiches filled with delicious delicacies, freshly baked scones and flaky pastries oozing cream, all on their best china, and of course tea in a much-loved pot. Stanley Dock, Regent Rd, Liverpool L3 0AN T: 0151 559 1444 W:


Harvey Nichols, Beauty Bazaar

Sometimes, nature needs a little helping hand... Beauty Bazaar is your one-stop shop for all your beauty needs. Home to a wealth of exclusive products, top brands and pampering services from the internationally acclaimed to the new and innovative. Spend the day getting your nails done, your hair styled, and your make up perfected. 16 Manesty’s Lane,Liverpool ONE T: 0303 123 7014 W:

loves Smudge Boutique - The Metquarter

Fashions fade, style is timeless…Smudge Boutique in the Metquarter is the perfect fashion retailer and beauty expert for style-savvy fashionistas. Whether it’s ‘a day at the races’ or just a walk in the park, find the perfect choice of outfit for you! Unit 7, The Metquarter, 35 Whitechapel, Liverpool L1 6DA T: 0151 625 2852 | E: W:

Urban Calm - Metquarter

Gorgeous spa treatments from Liverpool’s premier day spa to help you refresh and rejuvenate. Home to Dermalogica, Skin Bar, Lash Out! Lashes, Leighton Denny Nails and Fake Bake – Urban Calm in the Metquarter has everything you need this party season. Upper Tier, The Metquarter, 35 Whitechapel Street, Liverpool L1 6DA T: 0151 236 0537 | E: W:


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New healthy meal delivery service launched to serve foodies in Greater Manchester and Cheshire


ounded by experienced personal trainers and classically trained chefs, Fit Chef recently launched. Will Lee and Matt Williams combine their passions in food and fitness to launch a business to serve busy people that love to eat but don’t have the time to cook. Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is sometimes easier said than done. The intention can be there but, more often than not, the time isn’t. Time to go to the gym. Time to do the food shop and then, time to prepare something healthy and nutritionally balanced. It’s this lack of time that can make it all too easy to reach for the takeaway or something unhealthy when we know we should be eating better. Experienced personal trainers and classically trained chefs, Matt Williams and Will Lee understand the challenge and this month are launching the healthy meal delivery service, Fit Chef to support busy people that love to eat but don’t have the time to cook. Frustrated with quick fixes and misinformation around food and nutrition, Matt and Will set out to provide a convenient way for people to make lasting change to their diet; and to help them work towards their lifestyle goals.

“People are busy and although we are advocates of cooking for yourself, sometimes it’s not possible. That’s the point when reaching for the takeaway menu seems like the only option. Fit Chef prevents that with convenient food that is also healthy,” says Fit Chef co- founder, Matt. Matt and Will have ploughed not just their personal training and foodie experience into the new brand. They have also combined their love of travel into their dishes which have a big emphasis on fresh, healthy food. After training at Gordon Ramsay’s Chef School, Will worked as a chef in Australia for four years where a love for the outdoors and living a healthy life took hold. Matt trained at Leith’s cookery school in London and has brought inspiration to some of the Fit Chef dishes from his travels in New York, California, San Francisco and Hawaii. The team have worked hard to ensure that Fit Chef is not just good for its customers, but good for the environment too. Everything is delivered in environmentally friendly containers that can be kept in the fridge for up to five days. Will comments, “We’ve been really conscious in the entire product development phase to produce something that is as environmentally friendly as possible whilst maintaining the freshness of the food. Our trays have 95% less plastic than typical ‘ready-meal’ trays and can be used in the oven and microwave.” With an initial roll out in the Greater Manchester area, Fit Chef has now started to deliver nationally too. The range includes dishes suitable for vegan, vegetarian and gluten free diets. Fit Chef meals are always made fresh to order for delivery on Tuesdays and Fridays. Customers can select their meals each week from

“Fit Chef is not just good for its customers, but good for the environment too” 94

Nutritious and delicious food created by classically trained chefs and personal trainers that fits around your lifestyle

L EF T B A N K | S P I NNI NG FI E L DS | M A NC HE STE R | M 3 3A N 0161 3254444 WWW. A L BA TROSSA NDA RNOL D . UK . COM

Food Drink Mamucium

Mamucium Restaurant and Bar,

located in the NOMA Quarter next to Victoria Station, is an impressive 120-seat restaurant and bar. Acclaimed Manchester-born Executive Chef, Andrew Green, has created a northern-inspired British menu, a melting pot of classic dishes that have been given a unique, northern spin; inspired by his Manchester roots. Provenance runs through Mamucium’s menu, as dishes are prepared using the finest local ingredients and merchants.


Food &


Manchester Gin Distillery

This Summer Manchester Gin plans to open a city centre distillery in the heart of Manchester. Based on Watson Street, the distillery will be a renovation of six of the grade II star listed railway archways. Plans for the distillery also include a bar and restaurant – two intimate spaces where customers can taste Manchester Gin and an array of other creative and distinguished cocktails. 98

Nags Head, Tarporley

There was a fantastic turn out for The Nags Head, Haughton launch event in early January. Locals and friends flooded the pub, joining the team to celebrate their newest venture with drinks, canapés and live music.

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Franklin & Sons


Franklin & Sons, the premium soft drink, tonic and mixer brand, has unveiled its latest innovation to tap into the growing non-alcohol trend. Taking inspiration from distillers and their focus on beautiful flavour infusions and expressions, Franklin & Sons has created a range of premium non-alcoholic Infused Sodas each combining three flavours.

Pub in the Park

Following last year’s huge success of touring his Pub in the Park festival, Tom Kerridge has announced the event will return to Knutsford’s Lambing Shed next June. With an expanded line up of venues for 2019, Tom will be bringing his chef mates to the Cheshire party for a relaxed and intimate gathering; supporting and celebrating local talent, as well as presenting some of the biggest names in food and music. At each venue, there’ll be Michelin-starred and award-winning pubs and restaurants serving tasting dishes showing their signature style. Every event will celebrate the very best food the country has to offer, combined with great live music, chef demonstrations, top quality shopping and other festival fun. Tom Kerridge said, “This years’ Pub in the Park festivals were so much fun, I cannot wait to bring the same brilliant standard of food, class chefs, ace music and awesome vibe to eight locations across the UK next year.”

...with , SIMON MITTON Head Chef at The Boot Inn, Willington

TELL US ABOUT WHAT BROUGHT YOU TO YOUR CURRENT POSITION? I have been at The Boot for 7 years in total. I began as Sous Chef and then after 5 years I was promoted to Head Chef. The Boot has a fantastic location and reputation wtih lovely customers and I was immediately drawn to the job. I live in Great Budworth so it is an easy commute for me. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE STYLE OF FOOD? I love country cuisine that is cooked from the heart and that tastes amazing. I suppose you could call it 'old style' with a twist using only the best, freshest seasonal and local ingredients. This is very much what the Boot pub is about in terms of its menu which we change regularly depending on the season which gives me lots of variety which I love. WHAT'S YOUR FAVOURITE INGREDIENT AND WHY? I love oregano. You get very earth flavours from it and especially if you burn it it gives a slightly smoky, pizza type kind of flavour. WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE DRINK? I love a good quality white wine- I particularly enjoy Chardonnay and Chilean wines

WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE PIECE OF KITCHEN KIT? I would not be without my kitchen knife. It is a nice weight and very sharp and only I use it! WHO INSPIRES YOU AND WHY? My grandmother was an amazing cook and used to cook for the directors of Bass Charrington. She cooked delicious and tasty food in a very traditional way. She used to cook on a full burning Aga stove and her food was amazing. WHAT WOULD BE YOUR DESERT ISLAND DISH? It would have to be BBQ Rib Eye as I love this cut of meat and I guess you would be having to use a fire on a desert island! WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR MOST MEMORABLE MEAL? 2017 Christmas dinner with my whole family including my mother that I cooked. We had a full roast dinner with turkey and ham and all the trimmings surrounded by all the family. We had a wonderful time and I love cooking a full Christmas meal including the Christmas pudding!


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Sweet Success

Natalie Anglesey chats with twins Helen & Lisa Tse about the inspirational story of this rags to riches journey


f you weren’t born with the proverbial silver spoon in your mouth and you’ve worked hard for your success, you may relate to the inspirational story of Manchester’s Tse family and their rags to riches journey. With an MBE in the family, they not only own Manchester’s award-winning Sweet Mandarin restaurant but supply The Queen at Buckingham Palace as well as Number 10 Downing Street with their globally successful allergy-free sauces. They won £50 thousand on Dragon’s Den, awarded by Hilary Devaney, who was so impressed by their sales pitch, she left them alone to enjoy their success. Since then they’ve encountered the great and the good on trade missions with David Cameron to meet the Chinese Prime Minister, in the country of their ancestors, where their story began, as Helen Tse explains. “Our great grandparents lived in Guang Zhou, a Chinese province rich in soya beans, which great grand-father hoped to market to Hong Kong. Sadly, he was murdered by a rival. Because women then could not inherit, my great grandmother and their six children were left destitute and eventually moved to Hong Kong in search of work. Her daughter and my grandmother, Lily Kwok, was sent out


to work when she was only 12 years old. She became a maid to an English family and Mrs Woodman left her a small lump sum with which she travelled to England and set up a restaurant in1950’s Middleton. I vividly remember her and she was a formidable lady,” Helen reminisced. “My mother Mabel, Lily’s daughter, was brought up living above a chippie and worked from the tender age of nine. With the rest of the family, they eventually ran the business. But when she married Eric and they had we three girls and a son, they were determined they would give all of us a good education and insisted we left home to get our qualifications. “Once we learnt our incredible family history, and I only discovered how dirt poor they were when I went to Hong Kong, we sat down as adults and decided how we could honour them. That’s when we decided to open Sweet Mandarin. No bank would lend us the money so, as we already owned our own homes, we sold all our houses and moved back in with mum and dad! The only land we could afford was in the Northern Quarter which, of course, was not the trendy place it is today. We bought an empty car park as an investment and eventually built the restaurant there. “Although we are all good cooks, my brother has a degree in computer technology and works in IT. My sister Janet is a software engineer and she has two small children. I’d qualified as a lawyer but it’s my twin sister Lisa, now CEO of Sweet Mandarin and SM Sauces, who keeps reminding me, she is more hands-on than the rest of us,” Helen chuckles. “I have to admit it’s true that Lisa, more than the rest of us, is among the third generation of exceptional women, to be at the helm and work to re-establish our grandmother’s dream. Going on

trade missions to market our sauces was an extremely exciting time for us and the reward is that we are now a global brand as few Chinese sauces are both gluten free and nut free. “ Helen has already written a book about her family’s remarkable story called, of course, Sweet Mandarin, which eventually became a successful play which sold out at the Royal Exchange last year. She’s also written a recipe book using the same name. A Law graduate from Cambridge University with a professional career which has included working at Clifford Chance, London & Hong Kong, PricewaterhouseCoopers and Walkers in the Cayman Islands. Helen was an awarded an MBE by Her Majesty the Queen in 2014 and joined Clarke Willmott in 2017. Another of Helen’s books, entitled Doing Business after Brexit, was published by Bloomsbury, reflecting the work she does advising businesses to look at both the risks and the opportunities afforded by Brexit. She also gives talks and her latest, called Brexit and Dentists, made me smile until she explained that dentists and healthcare sectors, she believes, will be significantly impacted. “My next book is Cyber Security: Law & Guidance, which will be published by Bloomsbury as their leading book. It’s a fascinating subject. Cybersecurity is one of the most fundamental concerns for all businesses and is explained by various experts in civil, criminal and technical segments. I edit the entire book and also

contribute to the chapters on the cyber risks in business, healthcare and health tech.” With their various responsibilities, I wondered if these high-achieving twins ever found time for a private life? Helen beams. “ Although we both left marriage a bit later than most, I married last year to the pastor of my local church, Kings Church, and if you saw my family album, most of the congregation were there! Only a week ago my twin sister Lisa also got married and her wedding photographs must be among the happiest ever seen.” Family reunions are held at, where else, but Sweet Mandarin, which several years ago, won the Best Local Chinese restaurant in the UK, to the delight of difficult to please chef Gordon Ramsey. But which is still noted on social media as the go-to-place for authentic Chinese food in the Northern Quarter. Helen sums up.” Although as a family we are all involved in the business to a certain extent, we now know the most important inheritance is wisdom, and how recipes - passed down the female line - can be the most valuable heirloom. “ With a catch line that claims to serve delicious Mandarin and exotic cocktails, Sweet Mandarin is only open from Tuesday to Sunday from 5 pm - 10 pm. So that’s the life/work balance sorted! t: 0161 832 8848


Food & Drink | The CHESHIRE Magazine


BARRISTERS RESTAURANT The Courthouse, Knutsford

Local, seasonal produce from the county


arristers Restaurant and Bar is one of the newest eateries in the busy market town of Knutsford, Cheshire. Owned by the Flat Cap Group, The Courthouse doesn't disappoint on its name or heritage Barristers retain the historic court layout of Knutsford Crown Court remarkably intact. On arrival, you walk into the square, amphitheatre style seating arrangement with diners occupying the vantage points previously held by judge, jury, and legal counsel. The central 'dock' is now the bar, which has some of the comfiest bar stools I have experienced. The room is warm and welcoming, and the decor has a quirky feel, the walls festooned with pictures and mirrors leave the eyes plenty to gawp and chat about. Executive Chef, Steven Tuke heads up the restaurant and promises to provide premium British delights dedicated to a seasonal, fresh and homemade menu that changes with local suppliers, foragers and gatherers lay their hands on. Barristers have vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options too, so a safe bet for, what can be complicated family meals. Being a Friday evening, we chose off the Dinner Menu, served by an ever so friendly and attentive Sam, to start I opted for the Goats’ cheese mousse served with marinated heritage vine tomatoes, pickled beetroot, compressed cucumber and dill oil. My dining co-conspirator picked the Game Terrine, flavoured with Earl Grey tea served with date compote, apricots, hazelnut crumble, fresh berries and a Ciabatta crisp. Neither starter disappointed, my goats' cheese was whipped and fluffy, light and creamy, and perfectly complemented by the


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sweet tomatoes, it all would have been too sweet was it not for the stroke of genius of the fresh compressed cucumber which transformed this dish from simple cheese mousse to a symphony in your mouth. The game terrine arrived, brightly coloured (no grey meat here) bejewelled with bright green pistachios and delicately flavoured with Earl Grey tea, the date compote, sticky and sweet with crisp freshly toasted bread made a perfect little pre-trial. Suitably impressed with our starters, we waited next to no time for our mains to arrive, my slow braised lamb shoulder was served with thyme, and honey roasted pumpkin puree, fondants, creamed potatoes, mint jelly and red currant jus. My lamb was formed into a small meat tower, upon resting my knife on it, fell apart, so tender and succulent. The vegetables were tender but still had structure and bite and the jus and mint cut through the rich lamb flawlessly, my plate was picked clean! My dinner guest chose the open lasagne served with creamed wild mushrooms,

garlic, leeks and spinach, pine nuts, white truffle oil and parmesan. A deconstructed lasagne appeared, beautifully presented and as tasty as pasta, mushrooms and cheese can be, the sauce velvety and balanced with deep rich mushroom flavours. The dish was just on the verge of having too much truffle for me, but I've always found truffle can be quite polarising, but then again I don't like truffle, my partner in crime, however, did so its an acquittal. While our starters were just enough, the mains were definitely more robust and filling, but there is always room for dessert, so I eyed up the Cheesecake which was served with raspberry ripple, fresh raspberries, raspberry gel and vanilla crumble base. The cheesecake was a baked one, my favourite and was rich but beautifully accompanied by fresh, tart rasberries which balanced the scrummy dessert ideally. My suitably full eating accomplice plumped for the baked apple & brioche pudding, served with toffee crisp, caramel sauce, rum & raisin ice cream. A posh bread and butter pudding, creamy, sweet and marbled with sticky toffee sauce, the boozy rum and raisin ice cream was a guilty treat. I do love, hot and cold elements together in a dessert. The verdict, Barristers provides an excellent selection of seasonally led dishes, which are thoughtful and most with a small twist on what you would consider normality. The service is welcoming and friendly and the surroundings unique. We pass a suspended sentence, giving us the excuse to certainly return for a retrial. Barristers Restaurant, The Courthouse, Toft Road, Knutsford, WA16 0PB | T: 01565 743 333 | www.



01829 260265 | Long Lane Haughton Moss | Tarporley | CW6 9RN


Stuart McLachlan Stuart McLachlan, Bar Manager at 20 Stories offers an insight into the world of mixology and shares his favourite cocktail recipe. Botanicals have been a huge trend over the last few years, what is the new trend to watch out for? I like using ingredients that are usually more associated with the kitchen and our food at 20 Stories, implementing them within our cocktails. I think about sustainability of ingredients, for example I am in the process of using orange peel from our freshly made orange juice to infuse a homemade orange liqueur. Furthermore, the used ground coffee from our Barista will be infused into a coffee liqueur. I like to be experimental with our cocktails, you should see my cellar of ‘drinks in the making!’. Throughout December, our kitchen had some fantastic winter root vegetables that I was able to use within our cocktails for example, ‘Our Kind, Mary’ was a mix of vodka, beetroot juice, tomato juice, Worcestershire sauce and Tabasco, with a blend of fresh herbs and seasoning garnished with candid beetroot and rosemary. Where do you look to find new trends and inspirations to develop new cocktails? I follow what is classified as the World’s Best Bars and the way that their menus evolve such as Dandelion in London, as well as taking advantage of British seasonal produce and using these to enhance the monthly changes.


What do you order in a bar when you have a rare night off? I generally like to try a cocktail that I have never had before so if I see something on the menu that I haven’t heard of, I would order that! Should that not be an option, a simple Gin and Tonic is always a winner. What is the cocktail you would recommend right now on your menu? 20 Stories signature cocktail for me is a timely classic. It is a really good balance of all year ingredients, both fresh and preserved. It includes winter red wine with fresh summer lemon, perfect for any type of weather. Refreshing yet boozy! If you mix the cocktail up, everyone can relate to it as it acts as a sensory memory, reminding people of Sangria in the sun or red wine in the winter. If money was no object - what would be your ultimate high-end cocktail? I am a man of simple pleasures, it would be a Negroni, however made with more vintage ingredients such as a vintage Gin or Campari from the 60’s. What tips would you give our readers for a signature cocktail to serve friends at a dinner party? Have plenty of ice – it’s the number one ingredient in any cocktail. Also, stock your bar with basic spirits such as vodka, gin and rum, fresh fruit and be as creative as you can be. At my family parties, I tend to make versions of Aperol Spritz as you can play around with the ingredients. For example, you can switch the Aperol for Limoncello or Cassis, served in a wine glass which make it more accessible to be made at home. Being flexible with the ingredients add versatility to please most people at your party.

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Food & Drink

My Little Italy INGREDIENTS 30ml Ketel One vodka 30ml Limoncello 30ml Fresh cloudy apple juice 25ml Fresh squeezed lemon juice 15ml Vanilla syrup TO FINISH: 1 sprig of fresh thyme

METHOD Firstly, prepare your martini glasses. Fill them with ice and a little water to chill them down whilst you prepare your shaken cocktail, that way your drinks will stay colder for longer. Step 1: In to your cocktail shaker add the ingredients: 30ml Ketel One vodka, 30ml Limoncello, 30ml Fresh cloudy apple juice, 25ml Fresh squeezed lemon juice, 15ml Vanilla syrup, 1 sprig of fresh thyme Step 2: Add cubed ice to the top of the shaker you are using. (Tip: More ice in the shaker while shaking will speed up the rate at which your cocktail chills down but reduce the amount of dilution of water in the final drink) Step 3: Add the lid to your shaker securely and shake it as fast and as hard as you can until the outside of the shaker feels cold to the touch and condensation has started to form on the outside. This will mean the cocktail is thoroughly chilled and read to drink. Step 4: Open the cocktail shaker and have a quick taste test. It really is important to make

sure you taste the cocktail before you pour the final product into your martini glass. Once poured, changes can’t be made. This is the time to decide if you want it a little sweeter (add a touch more vanilla syrup) or a maybe slightly

sharper (add extra lemon juice). Step 5: Once you are happy, remove the ice that has now perfectly chilled down your martini glass and using a hawthorne and fine strainer, pour into your cocktail glass. The hawthorne strainer will hold back the large chunks of ice in the cocktail shaker tin, and the fine strainer will catch all the smaller shards of ice and small leaves of thyme that have broken away during your shake. Step 6: With a sharp knife, cut off a slice of lemon peel and express the oils from the skin on to the top of the drink, which will add an extra burst of lemon aroma when you go in for a sip. Step 7: Finally, garnish with a fresh piece of thyme across the top of your cocktail. At the restaurant we use an edible gold metallic effect spray paint on the thyme garnish, but a simple cake decorating gold spray would do the trick if you wanted to go the whole way.

Step 8: Sit back and enjoy the fresh flavour of how I imagine the Amalfi Coast to smell and taste. My Little Italy. 105

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Local scene Our social pages this month are filled with fizz, fundraising and a whole lot of style












The Oakfield, Chester Zoo This fabulously entertaining funfilled afternoon saw guests treated to fizz, fun and included a heartfelt talk from Tim Rowlands (Curator of Mammals) from Chester Zoo on the progress of the rebuild after their recent fire. The soundtrack of the event was provided by the incredible String Infusion and talented singer John Norcott. 107









YU SPRING MENU LAUNCH Alderley Edge Footballers, reality stars and soap sirens, joined in the fun to sample treats from the menu which is exclusive to the London Road eatery and brings another dimension to the UK’s Asian fusion offer. Executive Chef, Victor Yu, celebrated for his take on Asian cuisine and named the best Chinese Chef by Gordon Ramsay and Head Chef Krzyztof Borowiak, have designed 12 new dishes that blend exquisite flavours, the best ingredients as well as more vegan and vegetarian options, to create the new menus.

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HOTEL INDIGO MANCHESTER - VICTORIA STATION LAUNCH Manchester To celebrate the official opening of Hotel Indigo Manchester - Victoria Station, Manchester celebrities, businesses and movers and shakers attended a special opening party complete with live entertainment, salmon blinis and espresso martinis. 109

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Work of

ART Natalie Anglesey discovers what takes a hard-working Rector’s wife into the boardrooms and workplaces of the business world from Manchester to Madrid


arah Samuels Fine Paintings: Art In Business has successfully been in operation for almost 30 years. Fine art dealer and Cheshire-based gallery owner, Sarah, is justifiably proud that she’s built her business on trust – between the artists she represents and her buyers, from both the private and business sectors. “Art should be a pleasure for everyone to enjoy,” Sarah impresses. She’s spent a lifetime engaging with people in her role as the wife of a Church of England clergyman. “I’ve enjoyed meeting people from all walks of life during our years working in Rochdale, Luton, Tarporley and Chester. I still do, now my husband has retired, in Hoole Village, Chester, where our home provides the gallery we love.” But how did Sarah become involved in Art in Business? “In the early nineties, it was the idea of Sir Timothy Clifford, the inspirational Head of the Manchester City Art Galleries, to take unseen art from the vaults and place it in corporate spaces. I was involved with The Patrons and Associates of the Manchester City Art Galleries which worked a treat until we were badly let down by a furbishers’ strike! So my husband and I literally took the art off our own walls, drove to the office in urgent need of pictures and hung the work ourselves -


much to the client’s relief - and that was the start of what has proved to be an amazing career.” Art in Business may seem an unlikely mix, but Sarah has the facts and figures plus the business acumen to prove it works. “I understand the German investment bank, Deutsche Bank, has the world’s largest collection of corporate art. This is not simply for prestige, or as an investment, but because the company encourages its employees to take a keen interest in the art, it displays in 900 offices, across 40 countries. It hosts talks by artists and even has an interactive app employees can use to discover more about the artwork on their office walls.” Sarah is whole-heartedly in favour of projects like this. “Dr Craig Knight, at the University of Exeter, has studied the psychology of work environments and heads a research group. He thinks people are happier and work better if they are in an enriching workspace. When you are doing business with others, where you want to engage with them, should you not be making purposeful choices about art displayed for visual impact?” We know that the concept of the single office has all but vanished, but the open-plan office has a mixed effect on its workers. Increasingly, more businesses are looking at improving office design to provide employees with increased motivation and better productivity, as Sarah clarifies: “Among my prestigious clients, the MBNA Bank had seen this proved successful and asked me to choose art for its new bank in Madrid. I loved the challenge. “Just as the furnishings and décor of your home reveal something about you, so the same applies to your workplace which can also help tell the story of the company brand. It conveys an image, both outwardly to clients and inwardly to

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Feature

employees. Research from International Art Consultants, in partnership with the British Council for Offices, also looked at the positive effects of art in the workplace, and its applications for branding and identity.” Sarah, generously, has some tips to pass on: “Resist the urge to be too top-down when choosing art for the workplace. Instead, consider asking employees their opinion. I remember walking through open offices with the CEO of a company when a woman working close to a painting she had to see every day, told me she hated it - and it was removed. When supplying new art to that company, they then asked that I give the staff choices of what they wished to have hanging near them.” Sarah has also supplied paintings for private hospitals. “Art has proven to have a rehabilitative effect in hospitals. The belief is that environmental features can generate positive feelings and reduce stressful thoughts. Art has a therapeutic effect. Looking at it reduces anxiety and, in more traditional forms, can help restore a sense of balance and reduce tension across a wide age range.” Research in America links landscape art with the lowering of anger levels. “A collaborative workplace thrives on people having positive, non-aggressive responses towards their work and colleagues. If you constantly feel angry and frustrated, your relationships suffer and so does the quality of your work. There’s likely to be increased staff turnover and instability as a result. Exposing people to images, they find pleasing can also make them more receptive to discussing different viewpoints and ideas.” At some time most of us have visited businesses or hotels where the walls displayed stock images which were bland and therefore less engaging. Sarah believes that fine art can provide brand leverage because it conveys a

clear sense of taste, and provides imagery that is thoughtful and inspiring. “Think about that important first impression you makes personally in business. Extend that principle to your workplace. Choosing fine art for the workplace is not like choosing normal office décor. Think in terms of how people will relate to it.” However, Art in Business is only one part, albeit an important one, of Sarah Samuels Fine Paintings. Sarah also sells to private individuals for their homes. “It’s the quality of the work that is paramount. I consider it a huge privilege that some of the UK’s most prestigious artists invite me into their studios to choose paintings specifically for my clients. “Among them, I count James Longueville PS RBSA, considered one of the country’s finest landscape painters. Cheshire born and bred, he has been extremely important in the success of my gallery. The Royal Academician Ken Howard OBE RA NEAC has also been kind and supportive of my gallery since its early days. Susan Ryder RP NEAC, a painter of interiors and portraits, has also been a good friend and loyal artist. She has painted Cheshire family portraits and was the only artist invited to paint Lady Diana in her wedding dress. Her portrait of HM The Queen is also much admired.” Buying art is personal – and can be a little daunting if you are a first-time buyer. But Sarah is an expert at establishing, understanding and matching her clients’ needs. She’ll offer reassurance, and an opportunity to buy art in the security and privacy of her own home where you can wander around amongst 70 paintings plus ceramics and sculpture. Sarah sums up. “I had a lovely Christmas card from my friend and former chairman, Paul Lee who wrote: ‘So glad to hear you’re still spreading pleasure throughout Cheshire and beyond.’ That sentiment meant everything to me!” Visit the website email or call 0785 449 0220 to book an appointment.


S h rew s bu ry S c h o o l Co-educational boarding & day school for pupils aged 13-18

Why would I send my child to boarding school? Find out more at Chester Cathedral on Wednesday 27th February 2019 Shrewsbury School is hosting an event to explore boarding life and the benefits it brings. Meet with parents, pupils and staff to ask the questions that matter most, whilst enjoying drinks and canapĂŠs in the magnificent setting of the Chapter House.

Chester Cathedral 9 Abbey Square Chester CH1 2HU


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Family The Kindest KIT Co-founded by Emma Bunton, Kit & Kin is known with natural parenting and we are delighted to see the launch of a new ethically sourced, organic cotton, unisex babywear range. We particularly love the World Sleeping Bag for cosy sleeps and the fact that every item purchased helps fund educational scholarships, healthcare and family planning clinics for local young women in Guatemala, supporting the World Land Trust’s efforts to empower women all over the world. World Sleeping Bag, £39.99


Family news All things bright and beautiful…

W O R D S : C O M P I L E D B Y G I N A N D J E L LY T O T S . C O. U K

Swaddle Me Bright Any parents will know the invaluable uses of muslins, from mopping up a baby spill to making good window cleaning cloths. These ones, however, are for treasuring as they celebrate everyone’s favourite patchwork elly, Elmer, as he celebrates his thirtieth birthday this year. Super cute and super soft this swaddle size muslin is the first product from kids’ clothing brand Lil’ Cubs x Elmer collection so keep an eye out for more fabulousness… Limited Edition Swaddle Muslin, £20


Take to the Skies Let the flying lessons begin with this magical Sky B Plane junior bed. Not only do we love the bright colours but the storage solutions for stowaways in the suitcase staircase and wing. We would have to move home again to fit in our bedroom but I am sure that there is a good home just waiting out there… Sky B Plane Junior Bed, £18,680

Little Lions If you’re looking for some activities to do with your little ones, then West Cheshire Museum’s have a plan. Designed for pre-schoolers (2-4 years old) Little Lions sessions run every Friday at the award-winning Lion Salt Works Museum in Northwich and encourage your little one/s to explore, investigate and learn through fun sensory and craft activities and through stories and song. They also provide an opportunity to meet like-minded parents, plus there is no cost.

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Family

Dress Up Time

Portable and magnetic, these dress up and play sets are designed to inspire girls to dream big and shine bright. Each set includes two scenes and 25 individual pieces to drive the imagination. Petit Collage Shine Bright £12

Growing Kindness

Mum of three, Teresa Gillam wanted to help grow kindness in her children at home and school so she created The Kindess Tree – a wooden birch tree that can be decorated with tree charms for every kind act that is fulfilled. We love the idea and can’t wait to add our charms. The Kindness Tree, £18.99. 50p from every tree sold goes to a kindness initiative

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PETS CORNER Adopting a Pet


wning a pet is a responsibility but, as I waxed lyrical last month, has an abundance of benefits to you and your family. Our furry fourlegged family members have always been adopted, from a jet black stray tom cat and a pure bred Wiemeraner called Moonstar Jupiter III or something such like and we wouldn’t have it any other way. It didn’t begin as a conscious decision. It began, aged two and three-quarters, when my parents adopted an Alsatian when they bought a house, as you do. And from then on, it was simply how things happened, picking up an abandoned racing greyhound on the way home from the dentist, aged 18 and so on. Our newest addition of five years however, came from Cheshire Dogs’ Home. Not long after the fire had demolished the Manchester site my husband and I visited and came home with a timid Border Collie who’s family didn’t want her anymore. Those of you who know her, know she’s a little bonkers (and fits in the family well!) so I can understand why she may been too much for her previous home, having said that the Home provided her with a second chance and a forever home with us. Micro-chipped, vaccinated and healthy we took her home for the total donation of £100. Yes, we had to settle her in but she was housetrained (which saved the furniture), slightly more mature and is fiercely protective of our newer family member, our daughter, aged 5 months who is absolutely besotted. If you would like to adopt a pet there are a number of shelters nearby: Manchester & Cheshire Dog’s Home, Cats Protection, Humane Education Society, RSPCA, Warrington Animal Welfare. Have a Google or a visit and see if you can find your perfect new friend.

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The CHESHIRE Magazine | Family



King’s former pupil and Bentley Programme Manager Dominique Roberts told aspiring female engineers of her rapid rise from work experience at Adlington Auto Centre to Bentley Motors and helping to redefine the luxury car market


ominique, who is still only 23, started her incredible journey on work experience at the Adlington garage before going on to work for Porsche, Lamborghini, Force India F1 Team and Bentley, all while completing her first-class Engineering degree and award-winning thesis. Dominique was speaking at the Macclesfield School’s Senior Girls’ Division, as part of its guest speaker programme and revealed to the current generation, “I did not start off my academic journey as the smartest in the classroom, far from it, but I had passion, drive and now - as a woman in engineering - I bring something different to the table.” Those strengths have turned out to be the imaginative application of core engineering and scientific principles plus the personal skills as taught to her by her grandfather, Jim Sutton, who she says “was not only an engineer but a true gentleman, who taught me the skills needed to be a good leader.” Inspired by his ability to ‘tinker’ with anything and make it better, Dominique sought out her first opportunity for work experience and after many rejections, Harper’s Auto Centre in Adlington took a chance on her. “They were fantastic; they let me learn on the job and take up the spanners. They never once put me down but encouraged me, respected me and taught me and I can’t thank them enough for the opportunity.” She then moved one step closer to her dream when she went to work as a Race Engineer for Hartech Racing Porsche Club Team in Bolton, initially as the team’s PR agent, writing blogs and press releases but after mentoring from the team management, getting to work as a Race Engineer. From there she went to Lamborghini Racing UK in Global 24 hour GT Racing as Principal Race and Data Engineer. Then Dominique moved to work for F1 with Force India, though as she found out, “this work not necessarily on the race track but back at HQ analysing engineering data.” All this time she was at the Central University of

Lancashire, gaining a first-class Engineering degree and, in her final year, also acting as Managing Director for their four-car racing programme. She took a year out of her studies on an Industrial Placement where she was a Project Engineer on Bentley’s Hybrid Electric Vehicle programme, which saw her return to university but now sponsored by Bentley to complete her thesis. Her study “The redefinition of luxury through the use of renewable energy in electric vehicles” won The Institute of Mechanical Engineering’s Global Award for Services to Engineering Progress in 2017. In 2018, she returned to Bentley as Programme Manager for Product Development Transformation. Dominique has many aspirations for the future but she also believes “as educated individuals we have a responsibility to give back to society”. Having now moved back to Macclesfield she was elected for the position of Board Member for the Silk Heritage Trust, where she hopes to use both her Engineering and Business knowledge to help an integral part of Macclesfield make its journey toward the future. Dominique’s key advice to young people is: “Know what you’re passionate about. Keep an open mind. Take every opportunity you can. Finally and most importantly, don’t just aspire to be something, aspire to do something.”



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How Using Music Helps People Living

With Dementia Over the past year, Quilter Cheviot has been working hard to raise awareness of dementia.


he disease is a growing problem in the UK, with one million people expected to be living with the condition by 2025. Quilter Cheviot have launched a number of initiatives over the past year, from creating Dementia Champions in each of their offices across the UK and Ireland, to writing guides and providing information for clients and financial advisers on how they can help people living with the disease. But one of the things they are most proud of is their partnership with The Brain Charity, whom they recently granted a three year funding package of ÂŁ150,000. The Brain Charity is a national organisation that provides support for people living with neurological conditions. The support from Quilter Cheviot helps the charity to research the use of music-based treatments for people living with dementia. Music can help active memory retention, and one UK study found that the use of music with care home residents led to a significant improvement in memory and communication over the six months for the study. The study in question was actually coconducted by an Anglo-American singersongwriter, Beatie Wolfe, who got the idea of using music to help people after visiting a relative in care in Portugal. The director of the care home heard her singing, and asked her to play to


all of the residents of the dementia ward. Despite the language barrier, the patients woke up and joined in with the music, with the director describing the experience as the ‘best he had ever seen the group.’ That incident led Wolfe directly onto Power of Music and Dementia research tour in 2014, and has since led to her work being published by the Stanford University School of Medicine. The use of music is gaining increased scientific validity. Non-pharmaceutical interventions feature highly on the latest guidelines from the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, with this including music and dance therapy.

The CHESHIRE Magazine | Sport

Does science support the use of music in dementia care? The scientific basis for music therapy is now becoming well established. Chronic stress becomes harder to handle as you get older, and can accelerate the degenerative effects of ageing. One study (Newcomer, 1999) found that increased cortisone levels – the hormone released in response to stress – started to impair verbal abilities and cause short-term memory loss. This is bad enough for someone without dementia; for someone living with the condition, any loss can make it significantly harder to enjoy simple human interaction, and have an immediate effect on quality of life.

According to a review of more than 400 research papers into the neurochemistry of music by McGill University in Canada, music reduces stress, while also leading to an improved immune system function. The Alzheimer’s Society has also conducted ‘Singing for the Brain’ workshops, which have found that musical and social intelligence is crucial to group participation is music, and that these intelligences persist even as the verbal and logical functions of the brain deteriorate. Of course, one of the significant benefits of music-based treatments is the lack of side effects. Music-based treatment also encourages wider social interaction, something which can improve the quality of life for people living with dementia, and help them to maintain their independence for as long as possible. Music activates different pathways of the brain compared to speech, giving people an alternative way to enjoy time with their

loved ones. It was The Brain Charity’s innovative approach to using music-based therapy that led to Quilter Cheviot awarding them its three year funding package back in September 2018. If you know someone who is living with dementia or want to find out more about the disease, visit The Brain Charity’s website or that of the Alzheimer’s Society, where you can find out lots about the condition, including helpful strategies and tips for dealing with the disease. The growing effort to raise awareness of dementia In recent years, we have seen a growing societal effort to act on dementia, including a new long-term strategy on dementia from the government. Amongst other things, this included raising the diagnosis rate of dementia to 66%, reducing the harmful practice of prescribing anti-psychotic medication to dementia sufferers, and training all NHS staff on dementia awareness. Separately, charities like the Alzheimer’s Society are aiming to train four million Dementia Friends by 2020, and the organisation is currently on track to achieve this ambitious target, having trained 2.7m people already. Clearly, there is still a lot to do when it comes to raising awareness of dementia, and addressing the unique challenges that the disease can bring. As a society we are becoming steadily better at dealing with the condition, and helping the people living with dementia. Using music to help dementia sufferers will be an area Quilter Cheviot will follow closely over the coming months and years, and it’s hoped that The Brain Charity can deliver some real insight into how people might be able to be helped in the future. dementia-initiative

“Music-based treatment also encourages wider social interaction, something which can improve the quality of life for people living with dementia” 123





San Marco, Sunlight and Shadow, oil 12” x 10” by Ken Howard, RA NEAC

San Marco, Sunlight and Shadow, oil 12” x 10” by Ken Howard, RA NEAC

Gallery for home business San Marco,artworks Sunlight and Shadow, oil 12” x 10” by Kenor Howard, RA NEAC Penelope RBSA SWAoil Nursery x 30” San Marco,Timmis Sunlight and Shadow, 12” x 10”Walk by Ken30” Howard, RAacrylic OPEN HOUSE Penelope Timmis RBSA SWA Nursery Walk 30” x 30” acrylic OPEN HOUSE NEAC to buy by appointment


Gallery artworks to buy For home or office Gallery artworks topastel buy6th Open 1. Thursday 22nd November Rockpool by Graham Painter -until 28”December x 28” For home or office Gallery artworks to buy Gallery artworks to buy Open 22nd November until 6th December LongThursday View, Mannings Lane North, Chester CH2 2PB 2. Reflections by Graham Painter - oil 28” x 33” Open Thursday 22nd November until 6th December Gallery artworks to buy Gallery artworks to buy 11am – 9pm each day by appointment Long 3. View, Lane North, TowerMannings Bridge by Matthew AlexanderChester - oil 20” xCH2 30” 2PB LongThursday View, Mannings Laneby North, Chester 2PB Open 22nd until 6th CH2 December or any other time appointment 4. Towards Beeston and Peckforton, Cheshire by 11am –November 9pm each day by appointment 11am – 9pm each day Long View, Mannings Lane North, Longueville PS RBSA - oil Chester 12” x 16” CH2 2PB orJames other time by appointment orany any other time by appointment 07854 490 220 11am – 9pm each day or other time490 by220 appointment 07854 220 07854 490 Previous Corporate Clients include:

07854 490 220 Previous Clientsinclude: include: PreviousCorporate Corporate Clients Previous Corporate Clients include:




CORAL is the Colour Living coral’, the

colour of the year.

PRINTS Charming Sofas in collaboration with the V&A museum.

Evanescence The famous artist and painter Guillaume Bottazzi presents his first lighting collection Evanescence, designed to contribute to our sense of well-being. The sober design of the Evanescence collection of lights serves an elegant, poetic vision. These creations give us space to breathe and relate to our energy. The Evanescence collection designs use baked transparent inks. Five designs are available in a range of around 70 products, including suspended lights, integrated lighting, ceiling and wall lights. Opalescent surfaces are available in 15 soft colours. From £3,699

Seal it With


A nod to Valentines Day with pieces for your home.





Trend Alert:

CORAL ‘L iving coral’, aka Pantone 16-1546, has been named the colour of the year by the renowned colour matching system. Described as “animating and life-affirming coral hue with a golden undertone that energises and enlivens with a softer edge”, the marine tone is predicted to dominate the design industry this year.




This February if you’re looking to pop the question, why not elevate the special occasion with scent styling by Champagne and Flamingos? The service mixes and matches blends of the finest fragrances to create a scent to treasure forever. Furthermore, carry the scent into your wedding day, and whenever you want to reminisce, just light a candle which will take you back to the big day.

Homes and Interiors

TIDY ROOM, TIDY MIND Light Up, Light Up To celebrate Umage’s 10 year anniversary, it has launched a special edition of the Aluvia light in brushed brass. Inspired by nature with its characteristic triangular petals, it casts a warm glow, and makes a feature statement whether it’s turned on or off. Made from aluminum, it’s lightweight and durable too. Founder and Chief Creative Developer Søren Ravn Christensen says: “Imagine if flowers could light up. They would create the most playful dancing shadows, spinning around and making everything come to life. The Aluvia embodies just that – nature’s magic in your home.” From £219,

Are you looking to get organised in time for spring? String’s multifunctional furniture is versatile and customisable and can give any bedroom a new lease of life. Whether you’re looking to store books, lamps or your favourite trinkets, it offers unlimited combinations and with numerous styles to choose from to create a more streamlined and organised living environment. String at


Did You Know?

That Cheshire-based Chrysanthemums Direct is one of the finest specialist nurseries in the country with the widest range of Chrysanthemums available in the UK, offering more than 420 varieties. The company celebrated its 60th anniversary last year and its glasshouses cover more than six acres.




MONTH Lovers of elegant interiors will appreciate this exquisite chess board, recently commissioned by luxury interior design and architect studio Bergman Interiors. It is the ultimate piece for any game lover or art collector. Showcasing craftsmanship and exquisite design, it was created by the hands of the finest artisans in Lake Como, Italy. £6,250,

Prints Charming Sofa Workshop has recently designed a collection in collaboration with the V&A museum. Bringing an inspired collection of print stories and furniture styles, drawn from the rich archive of the world’s leading museum of art,

BRILLIANT BAUHAUS This year celebrates 100 years of Bauhaus, a fine arts and crafts institution that held the mission of combining the arts with architecture and interior design. In 1919 an art school was formed in Germany, one that would go on to have a profound influence on art and interior design over the


design and performance, the furniture stands out from the crowd. From opulent velvets for those who love luxurious textures to decorative patterns and bolder styles, there’s a design to elevate any room. From £2,589,

following century. That school was called The Bauhaus. Inspired by the movement of modernism, the signature Bauhaus look comprises circular shapes, angular frames and abstract blocks of primary colours. It has continued to be a popular look, and this piece from The Old Cinema is a prime example. £550,

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Furl Furniture @Furl_Home #Interiordesign tips that will transform your life: - Cheer up small spaces with #plants - Use #wallpaper in unexpected places - Leave cabinets and shelving space open

Get Up & Go

If you’re in need of a bit of a boost, then ESPA’s hand-poured Energise candle may do the trick. With an aromatic blend of peppermint, eucalyptus, lime and rosemary to revitalise, enliven and awaken the senses, it may give you that extra energy just when you need it.

#InteriorStyling #InteriorDecor #HomeDesign #HomeDecorating via @RedMagDaily #Interiordesign

Kelly Wearstler @kellywearstler Book club. I love referencing art and design books for inspiration. I keep a curated selection in my studio which I rotate throughout the year.



WORDS OF WISDOM “Luxury is in each detail” – Hubert de Givenchy

As we spend a third of our life sleeping, investing in quality bed linen is a must, and it can make a huge difference to the way we sleep. If you’re looking for a bedroom refresh look no further than Urban Collective, who use 100 per cent eco-friendly materials. Make the most of the remaining winter and snuggle up in its bed sheets, bedspreads or throws.


Backford BackfordHall Hall &&The TheStables Stables atatBackford BackfordPark, Park,Chester Chester

Backford Backford HallHall andand TheThe Stables Stables is aismagnificent a magnificent Grade Grade II listed II listed country country house house thatthat hashas been been lovingly lovingly restored restored andand converted converted intointo unique unique 2 &23&bedroom 3 bedroom apartments apartments andand homes. homes. Prices Prices from from ÂŁ279,950 ÂŁ279,950 *Help to Buy *Help purchasers to Buy purchasers are required aretorequired fund atto least fund80% at least of the 80% purchase of the purchase price by means price by of means a conventional of a conventional mortgage,mortgage, savings and savings any deposit and anywhere deposit required. where Eligible required. applicants Eligible applicants will be offered will beanoffered equity an loanequity of 20% loanofofthe 20% market of theprice, market interest price,free interest for thefree firstfor the first five years.five At the years. startAtofthe year start sixofayear fee ofsix1.75% a fee of is payable 1.75% isonpayable the equity on the loan, equity which loan, rises which annually risesby annually RPI inflation by RPIplus inflation 1%. Terms plus 1%. andTerms conditions and conditions apply andapply full details and full willdetails be provided will be on provided request. onOnly request. available Only on available selected onproperties selected properties in England. inYOUR England. HOME YOUR MAY HOME MAY BE REPOSSESSED BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DOIFNOT YOUKEEP DO NOT UP REPAYMENTS KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON YOUR ON MORTGAGE. YOUR MORTGAGE. Please askPlease our Sales ask our Advisor SalesforAdvisor full terms for full andterms conditions. and conditions. Prices andPrices detailsand correct details atcorrect time of at distribution. time of distribution. Images forImages illustrative for illustrative purposes purposes only. only.

st MAY

Visit Visit our our stunning stunning Show Show Homes Homes today today and and seesee forfor yourself yourself just just what what makes makes a Jones a Jones home home soso special. special. HelpHelp to Buy* to Buy* is available is available at this at this development. development.

Backford Backford HallHall andand TheThe Stables Stables at Backford at Backford Park, Park, off Gordon off Gordon Lane, Lane, Chester Chester CH2CH2 4DG4DG 01244 01244 851831 851831



GODDARD We meet one of the Creative Directors from NoChintz in Manchester I like things paired back. A nod to simple Scandinavian design but with a sense of Dutch humour.

What is the easiest way to transform a space?

Lighting can transform a space. It sets a tone and transitions you from day to night.

What do you see as being the design trends this year?

Our consciousness around the environmental impact of our actions has started to shape how we are designing and what materials we are using. Wellness is also at the core of our design awareness - creating spaces that perform and nourish as opposed to just looking nice.

What inspired you to create your design business? A desire to work with clients to create beautiful spaces.

How would you describe your design style?

What’s your favourite architectural style?

I like Nordic design. Understated, with a familiarity thats incites that feeling of coming home.

Can you describe your average weekend?

I’m a mum to 3 kids so it generally

“Our consciousness around the started to shape how we are designing 132

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starts at 5am with lots of coffee. Then some serious logistics and programming to feed their insatiable appetite for good food, creative stimulation and the latest Netflix, before an early night!

furniture can determine the success or failure of a space.

If you could banish something from the world of design, what would it be?

I would banish anyone using the word ‘funky’. NoChintz, 12 Hilton Street, Northern Quarter, Manchester, M1 1JF | t:0161 236 1412

What’s your favourite colour and why?

Grey. There is many shades to work with to create a subtly which can produce calming yet dramatic spaces.

If you had just one item in your design toolbox, what would it be?

Product knowledge. A piece of furniture tells a story, a brief history of design and a study into form. It can create a statement or bring function. The right piece of

environmental impact of our actions has and what materials we are using.” 133

Homes and Interiors


SEAL IT WITH LOVE Give a nod to Valentine’s Day with these pieces for your home


Embroidered Hearts Cushion, £35

Red Apple Ornament, £85

Heart Light, £45

Globe Light, £82

Back to Back Sitting Couple Sculpture in Solid Bronze, £59

Peter Walters Wuthering Heights Framed Print, £30

Marimekko Red Teapot, £75

Vintage Gold Rectangles Mirror, £95

Miss K Table Lamp, £240


Backford HALL

and we are confident we have maintained this.” “Impeccable quality has been the theme running through the development, from exterior restorations right through to the detail of our specification. We have included Villeroy and Boch bathrooms and Symphony kitchens with Quartzstone worktops.” “The Stables offers a rare opportunity to own a

Jones Homes has opened the doors to five beautifully renovated properties which mark the final stage of the restoration of Backford Hall and its grounds.


he Stables at Backford Hall is a collection of characterful homes created within outbuildings belonging to the historic Cheshire hall. The properties range from two to three bedrooms. Each home has a unique layout, carefully designed to work with the historic features of the buildings while creating a functional living space. Gemma Pownall, Sales Director for Jones Homes North West, said: “Backford Hall and its surroundings have been transformed since we started work on the development.” “When we began renovating the main hall it had been empty for a few years. This amplified the inherent difficulties associated with restoring a listed building, but we rose to the challenge, creating design and specification of the highest quality. This was echoed in the development of the 45 new homes within Backford Park and the barn and lodge restorations which followed.” “By the time work began at The Stables, we had set ourselves an incredibly high standard


home with heritage and character, married with all the benefits associated with a new home.” The homes at The Stables are named after breeds of horse, as a nod to the buildings’ former use. The Shire is one of the larger homes. Built within the former coach house, the threebedroom house has been dressed as a showhome. Accessed off a courtyard garden, The Shire features a glazed entrance, with windows and doors across the main façade replicating the old coach house doors. The result is an overwhelming feeling of light and space. The stunning family kitchen and dining room,

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leading onto the sun room, forms the focal point of the home. The study is located next to the sun room and there is a separate lounge to the left of the entrance hall. A downstairs WC and storage area also lead off the entrance hall. Upstairs are three bedrooms. The master bedroom has an en-suite and there is also a familybathroom. The remaining space within the former coach house is devoted to a two-bedroom home, The Shetland. A traditional stable door marks the northern entrance, leading into the living, kitchen and dining area. The master bedroom is located on the ground floor, with the second bedroom upstairs. Each has its own bathroom and there is a downstairs WC. Also upstairs is a snug, offering a quiet retreat looking out over the open-plan living area below. The main entrance is to the east, adjacent to the green in front of Backford Hall. The stables building sits on the opposite side of the courtyard to the old coach house and is divided into three properties. Accessed from the courtyard is The Clydesdale. Its open-plan living, kitchen and dining area has proved an immediate hit with visitors. The spacious living area lends itself to a variety of layouts and there are multiple electrical and audio-visual points to facilitate flexibility. A breakfast bar marks the entrance to the kitchen and there are doors at either end of the L-shaped living and dining area, leading to the entrance hall. The staircase sits underneath a glazed roof, which reinforces the impression of grandeur on approach to the upper floor. Upstairs are two double bedrooms, a family bathroom and an en-suite to the master bedroom. Also within the renovated stable block is The Dartmoor. It boasts an abundance of space downstairs, with an open-plan kitchen dining area, separate living room and a study. Upstairs are three double bedrooms, a family bathroom and en-suite to the master bedroom. Original beams and restored beams serve as a reminder of the building’s heritage.

Directly opposite Backford Hall is the entrance to The Suffolk. The L-shaped entrance hall leads to the kitchen. To the left of the hall is the main living space, again generously proportioned and able to accommodate a variety of layouts. Upstairs are three bedrooms, one with en-suite, and a family bathroom. Each of the homes has its own outdoor space, a garage and allocated parking spaces. Being Grade II listed, the coach house and stable block echo characteristics of the main hall. Externally, Jones Homes has restored brickwork, reinstating historic brick patterns and removing more recent paintwork from the walls. Windows have been restored or replicated and the original beams have been retained. Jones Homes has built 45 new homes within the grounds, known as Backford Park, and converted a Grade II Listed lodge and a barn.

“The Stables offers a rare opportunity to own a home with heritage and character” The main Grade II listed hall has been converted into 10 apartments. Work is now complete at the hall and the final five apartments have been released for sale. The grounds of the hall have been a country park for more than 500 years. Jones Homes has created and implemented a detailed woodland management plan to ensure the surrounding area is protected and maintained for generations to come. Gemma Pownall said: “Backford Hall is the main landmark within the village of Backford so its sensitive restoration is of major significance to the area and to everyone who lives here. Backford Hall is located off Gordon Lane, Backford, Chester CH2 4DG. | T: 01244 851831


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Luxury Family


This beautiful family home was transformed by Elite Design Studio, and recently shortlisted for the Interior Design Project under ÂŁ150k award at the 2018 Northern Design Awards


heshire based interior design practice Elite Design Studio was established by Gemma Merrick and Cassie Heathcock in 2016, two entrepreneurial business women and designers with over fifteen years of combined experience within the industry. Having built a successful partnership working together for six years at a previous design practice, Gemma and Cassie felt it was the perfect time to combine their shared passion and experience, and launch their own successful interior design company. Both Gemma and Cassie pride themselves on overseeing each and


every client project personally, from the initial design concept right through to the final installation day on site. They are involved in the entire design process, both working extensively on each and every detail and utilising their skillset at every stage. This attention to detail has earned them a reputable stature within the interior design industry, and they boast an impressive portfolio of client projects ranging in scope and style both nationally and internationally. Their personal approach allows them to build close relationships with their clients, understanding how they live on a day to day basis which is such a vital component for shaping how they design each project. Gemma and Cassie were appointed to work on this Cheshire based family home, when their clients felt they needed help to refurbish a tired and outdated interior and wanted a fresh injection of style and luxury. The extensive 8000 sq ft project was commissioned by a young couple with two children, who had been living in the house for the last 10 years, and were looking to create a more

Homes and Interiors

on-trend and contemporary family home. Elite Design Studio were given a brief with a strong emphasis on creating a space that the children, family and friends could enjoy for years to come. Elite Design Studio transformed prominent spaces within their luxurious family home which consisted of the kitchen/day living room, new gym and spa, formal living room, dining room, master bedroom and master dressing room. Alongside being contracted for all of the interior design and interior architecture, they also fully project managed the refurbishment, overseeing the entire process from conception to completion. This included the full design service, space planning, project conception, specification of all loose furniture and bespoke items, tender to trades and contractors, procurement, and full project installation coordinating. There were three key rooms which needed the most design attention and also had the most dramatic transformations. The beautiful new open-plan kitchen has really created the ‘wow’ factor their clients wanted

to achieve, with entertaining both family and friends being a priority to this young family. Originally, the kitchen was almost half the size, linking through to a small room which housed a family gym, and then opened up into a large indoor swimming pool.All of these areas were out-dated and needed completely re-designing to create the luxurious and opulent space their clients desired. By knocking through the dividing wall between the original kitchen and the small gym, this opened the space up to create this beautiful open plan kitchen area, creating the perfect environment for both entertaining and relaxing which was tailor-made to accommodate the lifestyle of their family within the hub of the home. Whilst working alongside Kitchen Architecture, Elite Design Studio have created a completely bespoke sophisticated Kitchen by incorporating a streamline, seamless cabinetry design, complete with timber veneers, beautifully book matched statuario neolith worktops and a feature bank of eye level ovens. As a result, the combination and balance of all these materials have showcased this show stopping kitchen to perfection. Leading off from this kitchen was originally a tired and dated indoor swimming pool which the clients no longer required within their family lifestyle. With a large double-height space, Elite Design Studio retained the stunning beams at the far end of the room and added in a lowered ceiling detail to the front of the room. This created a defined two zone space



within this beautiful gym and spa. At the far end, a large gymnasium was created, with a wall clad in bevelled bronzed mirror, adjacent to a beautiful and completely bespoke, commissioned art panel wall. The flooring was a combination of highly durable textured rubber panels and a large run of black oak which leads your eye all the way through the room towards the striking double doors at the opposite end. The lowered ceiling houses an in-house spa area, complete with a completely bespoke steam room and uniquely designed cabinetry and seating space used to tie both spaces together perfectly. These challenging new layouts within the kitchen and new gym/spa gave the greatest design accomplishments, and resulted in the most exciting transformations within the property. The new master bedroom dressing room was created with both a feminine and masculine design in mind, so that the space flowed effortlessly together through both rooms. A rich chocolate wenge timber was the backbone of this cabinetry, inlaid with stain resistant suede upholstered panels, silver bevelled mirror and clear glass doors to display the clients beautiful array of handbags and shoes. The formal living room and dining

room is where the real opulence lies within the project. With bronzed applied polished plaster, a rich platinum, gold and blue colour palette and an array of beautifully bespoke soft furnishings, this room has been completely transformed into a beautiful entertaining space. By creating a soft and neutral colour palette with bold tones throughout the rooms of the property, this has enhanced each space to flow seamlessly and effortlessly. By introducing subtle accent colours, beautifully designed, unique, bespoke cabinetry, carefully selected luxury brands and commissioned pieces, Elite Design Studio have impressively refurbished and transformed this property into a sophisticated, stylish and beautiful family home of which both themselves and their clients are immensely proud of. Elite Design Studio, The Colony, Altrincham Road, Wilmslow SK9 4LY 01625 704 071

�The formal living room and dining room is where the real opulence lies within the project� 142



6 Kingsway, Altrincham, Cheshire, WA14 1PJ

0161 279 1670



A substantial, immaculately presented house with views of the Bollin Valley, sitting at the

end of a no-through road within Wilmslow.

• 4 reception rooms • Media room • Study • Kitchen/breakfast room • 5 bedrooms (2 en suite) • Bathroom • Garaging with store/office • Hard tennis court • In all about 2.46 acres


01625 540 340

Local and National reach through a network of London and Regional offices




An exceptional family house with leisure suite and wonderful far-reaching views, together with a detached barn conversion, all situated on a quiet, unadopted lane, within a short drive of central Wilmslow. AVAILABLE AS A WHOLE OR INDIVIDUALLY. MAIN HOUSE: • 3 reception rooms Kitchen/breakfast/sitting room • 5 bedrooms • 3 bath/shower rooms • Leisure suite • Approximately 1.75 acres BARN: • 2 reception rooms • Breakfast kitchen • 4 bedrooms • 2 bathrooms

GUIDE PRICES: THE HOUSE £2,150,000 EPC RATING D & D THE BARN £825,000 THE WHOLE £2,975,000

01625 540 340

Local and National reach through a network of London and Regional offices



An imposing residence of outstanding proportions, set well back from the road, in a

mature and private location.

• Drawing room with dining area • Garden room • Study • Breakfast kitchen • 6 bedrooms (2 en suite) • Bathroom • Cellarage • Garaging • Approximately half an acre


0161 928 8881

Local and National reach through a network of London and Regional offices



A stunning, contemporary house with wonderful south-facing gardens.

• 3 reception rooms • Study • Gym • Breakfast kitchen • Ground floor shower room • 5 bedrooms (all en suite) • Garage • Breeze House • gardens


01625 540 340

Local and National reach through a network of London and Regional offices



A beautifully presented and generously proportioned, south-facing, period family house, within walking distance of central Wilmslow. • 3 reception rooms • Breakfast kitchen • 4 bedrooms (1 en suite) • Bathroom • Cellarage • Garaging • Gardens

GUIDE PRICE: £1,250,000



A wonderful Grade II Listed 5 bedroom house with large outbuilding. • 2 reception rooms • Breakfast kitchen • 5 bedrooms (1 en suite) • Bathroom • Loft space • Outbuilding with utility/gym area, storage, study, office and WC (potential annexe) • Gardens

GUIDE PRICE: £699,500


01625 540 340

8 Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AA

CGI - for illustrative purposes only

Alternative CGI



A wonderful opportunity to create a contemporary up to 797 sq m (8,578 sq ft) property, nestled in Japanese style gardens to about 1.34 acres, all sitting at the top of one of the most prestigious roads in Alderley Edge.

GUIDE PRICE: £2,750,000



A well-appointed, modern family house with annexe, stabling and commanding views, set in about 5 acres.

• 2 reception rooms • Study • Gym/games room • Kitchen/breakfast/family room • 5 bedrooms (2 en suite) • Bathroom • 1 bedroom annexe • Outdoor pool • Stabling • Gardens • Paddocks • In all approximately 5 acres OFFERS IN EXCESS OF £1,300,000


01625 540 340

8 Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AA





A high specification, modern house with wonderful views, within walking distance of central Alderley Edge. • 2 reception rooms • Kitchen/living/dining room • 4 bedrooms (2 en suite) • Bathroom • Garage • Parking • Gardens

A beautifully presented and extended period semi-detached property, with many charming features. • 2 reception rooms • Kitchen/breakfast/living room • 4 bedrooms (1 en suite) • Bathroom • Cellar • Parking • Gardens

GUIDE PRICE: £899,500




A characterful property, forming part of the exclusive Mottram Hall Farm development, with views across the golf course. • Dining hall • Drawing room • Study • Breakfast kitchen • 3 bedrooms • 2 bathrooms • Garaging • Gardens • Stable/store

Two potential building plots, one with planning permission.. Proposed: • 3 reception rooms • Breakfast kitchen • Conservatory • 5 bedrooms • 2 bath/shower rooms • Garage (already constructed) • Orchard • In all approximately 0.59 of an acre

GUIDE PRICE: £799,950

GUIDE PRICE: £450,000


01625 540 340

8 Water Lane, Wilmslow, Cheshire, SK9 5AA


HALE BARNS EPC RATING E An impressive Arts & Crafts property with an abundance of character, set within a large plot on this private, no-through road. • Kitchen/dining/family room • 4 reception rooms • Study • 5 bedrooms (2 en suite) • Bathroom • Garaging • Garden


NETHER ALDERLEY BOWDON EPC RATING EPCDRATING E An immaculately presented five bedroom country house, in around 4.8 acres of stunning gardens and paddock land, situated on a A delightful detached dormer house set in a small cul-de-sac with a good-size private plot. rural no-through lane in Nether Alderley. •• 32 reception reception rooms • Kitchen • 3 bedrooms • 2• 5bath/shower • Garage • Gardens. rooms• •Conservatory Study • Orangery • Breakfast kitchen bedrooms (1rooms en suite) • Shower room • Garaging & workshop with games room/annexe above • Gardens • Paddock land • In all about 4.8 acres

PRICE £1,999,995 GUIDE PRICE: £750,000


0161 928 8881

174 Ashley Road, Hale, Cheshire, WA15 9SF


Bramcote Lodge, Green Walk BOWDON



his superb family home has undergone complete refurbishment and remodelling by our client creating fabulous open plan and contemporary living, finished to the highest of standards. The spacious and well laid out accommodation in brief comprises entrance hall with full height windows and galleried landing,


downstairs wc and four versatile reception rooms currently being used as study, gymnasium, dining room and lounge. There is also a stunning fully fitted Neptune dining kitchen with full length bi fold doors leading to the rear garden. Off the kitchen is a further sitting room also with bi folds leading to the rear garden. Completing the ground floor is a rear hall and utility room. At first floor level is a fantastic master suite with walk in dressing room/wardrobes, good size bathroom and bedroom with Juliet balcony overlooking the rear garden. There are four further bedrooms (two with en-suite) and a family bathroom. Externally there is ample off road parking in addition to a covered car port and a detached double garage. The gardens are beautifully landscaped resulting in low maintenance areas with dramatic up lighting to the front and a private south facing aspect to the rear. Available through John Hilditch & Co T: 0161 929 6363 W:

Homes and Interiors

133 Hale Road HALE ÂŁ965,000


itting in a truly central location literally within flat walking distance of Hale’s fashionable village 133 Hale Road has been beautifully updated and modernised and now offers fabulous accommodation spread over four floors. Briefly the accommodation comprises a porch, wide welcoming entrance hallway, formal sitting room, home office, dining kitchen and utility room, whilst at lower ground floor level are useful storage areas leading from a reception hallway a fitness studio and media room. At first floor level is a master bedroom with en-suite, two further bedrooms and a family bathroom. At second floor completing the accommodation are two double bedrooms and a shower room and

landing/study area. Externally are well proportioned parking facilities and neat landscaped gardens. Much care and attention has been spent in the presentation of this house and no expense has been spared in the detail of the property. The house is decorated to a light,

tasteful contemporary theme and the house is presented in truly walk-in condition retaining many of the fine original features. Available through John Hilditch & Co T: 0161 929 6363 W:






compact Country Estate with a Grade I Listed Elizabethan country house. Splendid entrance hall, four fine reception rooms, billiards room, study, kitchen/breakfast room, conservatory, extensive domestic offices, galleried landings, twelve bedrooms, ten bath/shower rooms. Separate suite of well appointed offices with potential for selfcontained wing.


Garaging and domestic outbuildings. Mature gardens and pastureland. Planning permission for a stable block. Approximately 23.14 acres. Approximately 92 acres of additional land is available by separate negotiation. Available through Jackson-Stops, Wilmslow T: 01625 540340 W:

Homes and Interiors





n exceptional Estate with an elegant Grade II* Listed country house and extensive secondary accommodation, nestled in about 68 acres of gardens, park and farmland. THE HALL: Entrance and rear halls, cloakroom and WC, four reception rooms, kitchen/breakfast room with morning room, utility and laundry rooms, boot and dog washing room,



hardstanding area, 20 x 60 sand and rubber manege, separate horse box entrance.


OUTBUILDINGS: Two garage blocks for six cars, oak carport for four cars, implement shed. GARDENS & GROUNDS: Professionally designed walled garden with pavilion and further extensive landscaped gardens, hard tennis court, parkland, lake, woodland, farmland, in all about 68.3 acres.

gymnasium, snooker room, vaulted wine cellar, store, plant and boiler rooms, five bedrooms (master bedroom with dressing room), four bath/shower rooms, nursery/second dressing room. LEISURE SUITE: Indoor swimming pool, bar, relaxation area, changing room, shower room and WC. THE GRANGE: Entrance hall, cloakroom and WC, three reception rooms, garden room, kitchen/breakfast room, utility room, three bedrooms (all en suite, two with dressing rooms).


OFFICE SUITE/FURTHER ANCILLARY ACCOMMODATION: Entrance hall, WC, comms/boiler room, boardroom, two bedrooms (both en suite, one with dressing room).

THE COTTAGE: Entrance hall, reception room, Estate office/second reception room, two WCs, kitchen/breakfast room, utility room, three bedrooms, two bath/ shower rooms, study/library area.

PARTY SUITE/FURTHER OFFICE ACCOMMODATION: Entrance hall, WC, catering kitchen, first floor party room.

STABLE BLOCK: Five stables, foaling box, tack room with log burning stove, WC, kitchen, feed/store room, large covered

LOT 2: Further agricultural land available by separate negotiation, to about 31.78 acres. Available through Jackson-Stops, Wilmslow T: 01625 540340 W:

Homes and Interiors




aton Place is a luxurious and sophisticated penthouse apartment spanning three floors and 4,800 sq. ft in Central London’s most fashionable district of Belgravia. The home has a stunning interior and features two spectacular entertaining areas, offering buyers a sleek cinema room and fully equipped wood panelled bar. The property’s living and dining space is



dual aspect offering views over the surrounding area from the adjoining roof terrace. The home boasts a master suite with a walk-in dressing room and master bathroom, and three further bedrooms, including a second master suite. Eaton Place is situated on one of London’s most sought-after addresses, with The King’s Road, Sloane Square, The Duke of York’s Square, Sloane Street, Knightsbridge and Victoria providing excellent nearby options for shopping, dining, entertainment, culture and both underground and overground transport.

Available through UK Sotheby’s International Realty T: 020 7495 9580 W:


Homes and Interiors



Made with resin and ink with a hint of mixed media for texture, this new made-to-measure marble wallpaper mural by GCC Artworks stands out from the crowd. Gemma Coates is the artist behind the brand and takes her inspiration from the intrigue and beauty of our natural world. From ÂŁ32m2,


Homes and Interiors



MARBURY MEADOWS New part of the Wrenbury community offers the best of both worlds


ituated on the outskirts of the pretty village of Wrenbury, a popular new neighbourhood is creating a stir in the local housing market. Bovis Homes’ Marbury Meadows offers a selection of contemporary new properties in a carefully-designed, intimate location. Surrounded by countryside, but within walking distance of a range of amenities, it provides residents with the best of both worlds. “We’re very proud of our Marbury Meadows location, which has already proved popular amongst home seekers,” says Bovis Homes regional sales director, Elaine Cartwright. “It really is a hidden gem with a wonderful community feel. “Situated next to the River Weaver and close to the Shropshire and Union Canal, there are some wonderful walks right on the doorstep. It’s also within walking distance of a range of amenities in Wrenbury – including the village pub. The wonderful town of Nantwich, with its shops, restaurants and services, is also just a short drive away.” Marbury Meadows offers a range of stylish three, four and five-bedroom

A dream move into a brand-new Bovis Home could be much easier than you think homes, designed for modern lifestyles but with a traditional charm. “We include features such as open-plan living spaces, en suites, built-in wardrobes and French doors out into the garden, to create attractive, yet practical homes for modern-day families,” continues Elaine. “Visitors to Marbury Meadows can see for themselves by looking around our stunning five-bedroom Chester show home.”


The Chester has an open-plan kitchen and dining area with French doors out into the garden. The home boasts a spacious sitting room as well as a useful utility and separate study. The master bedroom includes a built-in wardrobe and en suite bathroom and a second bedroom also benefits with an en suite. There are a further three bedrooms and a family bathroom. “A dream move into a brand-new Bovis Home could be much easier than you think thanks to our range of purchase assistance schemes,” says Elaine. “Pop in and speak to our sales team to find out how we can help to get you moving.” With the Home Exchange scheme, Bovis Homes can take away the hassle of selling your existing property by buying it from you. The housebuilder will deal with the estate agents on your behalf and even pay the fees. “A great community spirit is already starting to emerge here at Marbury Meadows,” says Elaine. “It’s so peaceful and boasts a stunning large green open space – perfect for walking the dog, jogging or socialising with friends.” For more information visit






INNOVATION Our expertise and knowledge help us to explore modern construction techniques to make our homes more sustainable. This means we are continually improving the permanent performance of a house, saving energy and reducing bills.

COMMUNITY All our developments are built on the foundations of community and our homes provide the stability everyone needs to flourish. They are places to relax, gather together and create futures.

Cheshire CW5 8RA Open daily, 10am to 5pm

01270 342015

DESIGN The stunning new range of homes at Marbury Meadows has been designed with modern lifestyles in mind. Embracing contemporary design and styling, these homes retain classic architecture and traditional build quality. Photograph depicts a typical Bovis Home interior. Elevation may differ to that shown. Internal images may include optional upgrades at an additional cost. Price & availability correct at time of going to print/broadcast. Ask our sales advisor for details.

Janey Butler Interiors & Llama Architects form part of the Llama Group. Creating award winning residential and commercial projects in the UK and abroad.

I n t e r n at i o n a l A wa r d W i n n i n g A rc h i t e c t s & D e s i g n e r s The Coach House, Capesthor ne Hall, Nr Alderley Edge, Cheshire, SK11 9JY


l l a m ag ro u p . c o . u k


T: 01625 861935 E:

h e l lo @ ja n e y bu t l e r . c o . u k

l l a m ag ro u p . c o . u k

T: 01625 861936 E:

i n f o @ l l a m ag ro u p . c o . u k

Profile for The Cheshire Magazine

The Cheshire Magazine - February 19  

The definitive guide to luxury lifestyle in the North West. Latest news, delicious eats, travel treats and seasonal style trends. The Cheshi...

The Cheshire Magazine - February 19  

The definitive guide to luxury lifestyle in the North West. Latest news, delicious eats, travel treats and seasonal style trends. The Cheshi...