Page 1

Welcome to the Christmas issue, I hope you all like the fresh new look on the cover, which is in addition to the new website, facebook and twitter pages, our thanks must go to Broadbeandigital for all their help! Go to and let us know what you think. Also to be found on the website are contact details for advertisers and local groups, just in case you misplace your magazine! Along with events that miss copy deadline being listed on facebook and twitter. Still not to be missed in the magazine are articles from Authentic Adventures for holidays that will take you off the beaten track, news from Perfection Health and Beauty and A Little About Bruce and Rory at Barley Mow. Have you ever wandered where glass baubles for the Christmas tree originated? Or would you like to try cooking some Mini Christmas Cakes? Flick through this months pages for these and more! Merry Christmas & Happy New Year! Renee Tuck

Part-time carers (for days OR waking nights) with dementia experience wanted to support lovely couple, 4 miles S. of Malmesbury. Must drive and must not have pets or smoke owing to allergies. Email please in the first instance with brief details of your relevant experience. Please also indicate hours sought, availability and phone number. All enquiries responded to.

travel for all occasions Mark Brookman T: 01249 782 368 M: 07768 104 720 E:

Maths Tuition

RMN Personal Training Making Fitness Fun

Fully qualified teacher available for maths tuition including:-

1-2-1 sessions Personal and friendly Very effective Contact: 07979 084558

  

Common Entrance exam preparation GCSE exam preparation Advanced level mathematics.

Alan Felton Bsc. PGCE 01666 575039

Decadent pre-Christmas treat Due to popular demand Yvonne will now be offering treatments on Fridays and to celebrate Yvonne has created a new exotic flower skin and body massage treat. Moisture Melt A hypnotic alchemy of heavenly scent, rhythmical massage and satin soft skin. For complete details, reservations and other available treatments please contact Yvonne at the Oxford Practice, Malmesbury. Tel: 01666824560 or browse Save £5 on the Moisture Melt pre-Christmas treat booked on Fridays in December


To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


Christmas with Dickens Charles Dickens is often credited with inventing Christmas, or at least reinventing it and giving it its modern form. A Christmas Carol must be one of the most-filmed books ever, and the name of its central character, Scrooge, has entered the language. Yet it is one of his shorter works – a novella rather than a novel – and was only written to recoup the author’s finances after the failure of Martin Chuzzlewit. A Christmas Carol was an instant success, and Dickens followed it up with four more Christmas novellas between 1844 and 1848 (The Cricket on the Hearth of 1845, actually outsold A Christmas Carol), with 17 short stories published in the seasonal editions of his two magazines, Household Words and All the Year Round, between 1850 and 1867.

by Ted Bruning

enough were burned, and all the raisins were gone, they sat down by the huge fire of blazing logs to a substantial supper and a mighty bowl of wassail in which the hot apples were hissing and bubbling”. More booze. Perhaps, then, a truly Dickensian Christmas is too strong for modern stomachs. But one thing we might try is turning off the TV. No Queen’s Speech, The Great Escape, The Sound of Music or even A Christmas Carol. He believed in togetherness: friends, relations, neighbours, and stray Pickwickians all joining in one great joyous riot. So, hide the remote and bring on the mighty bowl of wassail and the only harp in all Muggleton!

Christmas badly needed reinventing. In the countryside, the grand old midwinter feast of medieval and earlier times had been driven underground by Puritan opposition before and during the Interregnum; and even after the Restoration it never really recovered its previous significance. And in the burgeoning industrial cities of the 18th and early 19th centuries, commerce allowed no pause for 12 days of ritual merriment. The shops didn’t even close. A companionable man, Dickens saw this as a great social evil. The traditional Christmas festivities had been communal events, and it was the sociable and communal side of Christmas that Dickens celebrated. Although privately he was a devout if unorthodox Christian, you will find little of the religious side of Christmas in his writings. Scrooge, frightened out of his miserly ways, does not rush out to church on Christmas morning but goes visiting. And at the heart of The Pickwick Papers is the Christmas Eve ball at Manor Farm, where Wardle hosts a blow-out of Lucullan proportions at which all comers, including the Pickwickians, are welcome. It would be a wonderful but wholly impossible endeavour to seek to recreate that feast at Dingley Dell. For one thing the sheer quantity of alcohol consumed – hot punch, mulled ale, warmed claret, brandy and hot water for the coachman, the “something good” enjoyed by Sam Weller and the Fat Boy at the Blue Lion at Muggleton, the “hot elder wine, wellqualified with brandy and spice” - would give your GP a fit. For another, even the most rabid “political correctness gone mad” merchant would have to admit that the game enjoyed by the partygoers (after the dancing to “the only harp in all Muggleton” and the blind man’s buff) was dangerous to the point of insanity. This was snap-dragon. The lights were extinguished, and a “ghost” in white sheet and wild wig presented a tray of raisins which had been soaked in brandy and set alight. These the players would have to grab without burning their fingers (hence the modern expression); and “when fingers


Even Mozart had to start somewhere! Have you always wanted to learn the piano?’s never too late to start learning. Learn to play on a beautiful Steinway grand piano in a lovely barn in Malmesbury. Work for exams or just play for pleasure. Adults and children Any level All welcome Contact Mrs Nicki Spicer BA Hons

01666 825670

To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts



To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


Authentic Adventures Authentic Adventures have been offering expert-led painting, photography, walking and singing holidays since 1997. It all began in Andalucia, and while Spain, alongside Italy, Malta and Greece remain evergreen destinations, this year you could be trekking in Transylvania, capturing camels (with your camera) in Rajasthan, crooning in Cuba, or painting canvases in Kerala. What makes Authentic Adventures special lies in our name. We take you to the heart of the country you're visiting, show you sights you never imagined and bring you into contact with local people and local ways. We go beyond well-trodden tourist tracks, in the company of like-minded travellers with shared interests in painting, photography, walking and singing. What’s more we use only tried and trusted hotels with local character; tutors who are not only experts in their respective fields, but have a love of, and ability to inspire and teach. Likewise we use the same

local staff year in year out, building up tried and trusted networks, and gaining invaluable local knowledge “on the ground” in all our destinations. And, there’s no need to begin or end your holiday with the crush at Gatwick as we’re very flexible on flights. Our choice of local airports includes Bristol and Birmingham. So, if you want to do something that bit different on your next holiday click onto Or call us on 01453 823 328 (9am5pm Monday to Friday). We’re based just down the road in Stroud, and all of us in the office are experts on our holidays, so we can provide you with all the information you need.


To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


Nigel Starr Groundwork, Fencing and Agricultural Contractor Est. 20 years • All types of fencing • Groundworks: Footings, underground drainage, septic tanks etc. • Driveways • Patios Other work undertaken Mobile: 07976 248930 Telephone: 01666 826877

L.P. Electrical Reliable & Friendly service Free Estimates for all your electrical needs Domestic, Industrial and Commercial Safety checks, Rewires, Extensions, Extra lighting and sockets, Fault finding, Test and Inspecting, Fuse board replacements, etc Fully insured and guaranteed Over 11 years experience

Call Les on

07890 541492

CV Writing Service Let me help you get that Interview! Examples of Services : (email for full price list)  

Basic CV-Students, School Leavers £25 Standard CV– 1to 4 previous jobs £40

Vouchers available....Give a useful present this Christmas! Contact Sally for initial enquiry: or 07824602225


To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

CHRISTMAS GIFTS ALL WRAPPED UP AT THE MANOR HOUSE HOTEL & GOLF CLUB From luxurious overnight stays and dining in the Michelin starred Bybrook restaurant to yummy afternoon tea and rounds of golf, we have some truly gorgeous Christmassy ideas for perfect presents as well as a choice of denominations to suit all pockets at this time of year FIND OUT MORE

CALL 01249 782206

The Manor House Hotel, Castle Combe, Nr. Bath, SN14 7HR

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


Christmas Goes Crackers If you’re fed up with your Uncle Jack’s unfunny one-liners this Christmas, why not retreat to a quiet corner and find a bit of comic relief away from the relatives. From classic cats to depressed rabbits, we have enough Christmas cheer to keep you laughing well into the New Year. The Far Side Gallery 1 By Gary Larson If there’s any doubt that Gary Larson is some kind of comic genius, it was dispelled when they built a museum in San Francisco and filled it with his cartoons. Seeing the world through Larson’s eyes is viewing it through a pair of Dame Edna-style glasses. He finds the funny in the ordinary and I guarantee you’ll never look at cows and chickens in quite the same way again. The Far Side books can be passed from grandparents to parents to children and all will be equally tickled by Larson’s humour. Simon’s Cat Vs. The World! Simon Tofield Not since Garfield has a cartoon cat so captured the nation’s heart. Simon’s cat spends his days terrorising and tormenting his long-suffering owner but this time, it’s the puss that’s under threat. With a new kitten on the scene, Simon’s Cat is facing a power-struggle of a magnitude he’s never known before. Forget fighting dead flies…this time it’s war. Life-long cat fan Tofield has had years of feline experience, and it shows. The new cartoons are full of pure moggy magic. The Best of “Punch” Cartoons. Helen Walasek, Prion Books Limited ‘Punch’ magazine may have closed its doors in 2002 but its legendary status lives on. This is the biggest collection of Punch cartoons ever and it’s one to be savoured. It’s essential reading for all fans of humour and satire, with no holds barred and nowhere safe to hide. The selection was made by Helen Walasek of the Punch Cartoon Library and it’s definitely to be treasured. With 600 of the best to flick through, you’d better avoid doing it in one sitting, or you might end up Punch drunk. The Best of Matt 2012. Matthew Pritchett Looking back over the last twelve months, you would expect cartoons on the Olympics, the Diamond Jubilee, the recession and everything else in-between. This multi awardwinning cartoonist captures the spirit of the nation in his own inimitable way. It’s a subtle mixture of wit and satire that will have you chuckling into your pudding. His almost haphazard drawing style is quirky and suggestive, making you feel like he’s capturing British life on the fly. A brilliant way to look back over the year.


The Book of Bunny Suicides. Andy Riley Poor bunny. Here we are, taking pleasure in his impending pain. It sounds terribly fiendish and it’s definitely not for Peter Rabbit fans but Riley’s cartoons somehow manage to maintain a touch of innocence in the macabre. The premise is simple and yet Bunny’s plans to end his days become more and more elaborate and ingenious as the book goes on. It brings new meaning to the phrase ‘not a happy bunny’. I guarantee that you’ll laugh out loud. Garfield Going for Gold Jim Davis Timed to coincide with London 2012, this special edition is one of the classic sports strips. He may have been around since the 70s but Davis’ furry anti-hero hasn’t grown out of taunting his owner with violence towards his canine counterpart, Odie and of laziness, gluttony, sarcasm and a hatred of Mondays. You gotta love a cat like that.

BOWEN ACCOUNTANTS LTD Chartered Accountants and Tax Consultants

•Small and medium sized business specialists •Free initial meeting •Fixed fees available •Free fact sheets and monthly e-news (see our website) Griffon House Seagry Heath Great Somerford Wiltshire SN15 5EN Tel: 01249 720341 Fax: 01249 470560

To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts



To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Cotswold Beauty Business shortlisted for ‘National Professional Salon of the Year Award 2013’ ‘Perfection Health and Beauty’ located in the tranquil village of Foxley on the outskirts of Malmesbury has been shortlisted in the category of ‘Beauty Salon of the Year – Three Rooms or Fewer’ in the Professional Beauty Awards 2013. The Professional Beauty Awards is the most prestigious awards scheme for the beauty aesthetics, nail and spa industries, recognising those who make a real difference to the industry and encouraging their development. The winners will be notified at a glittering awards dinner taking place on February 24th 2013 at The Hilton Park Lane, London. Salon owner Michelle Williams commented “My team and I are delighted to be shortlisted in the prestigious Professional National Beauty Awards and honoured to be recognised as one of the five best beauty salons in the UK. This recognition motivates the team and I to strive further in our quest for excellent customer service and superb client experience accessible to everyone’ Since opening in March 2011, Perfection Health and Beauty has gained a loyal client base from the local and surrounding areas, with many customers willing to travel from Bristol and Cheltenham to experience Perfection Health and Beauty’s first class service. Working with leading skincare brands including Darphin and Guinot, Perfection’s commitment to high quality is reflected in the choice of professional products used in all of their treatments. Having graduated with the highest possible grade (Triple Distinction) in her BTEC National Diploma, Michelle went onto work in senior positions in five star destination spas within the UK and gained a wealth of knowledge over the last ten years of working in the beauty industry, which naturally she has transferred onto the team at Perfection. Michelle comments “recruiting professional and knowledgeable staff is very important to me and I am thrilled to share this national recognition with my team at Perfection. It’s a testament to their dedication in providing our clients with excellent treatments and a high quality client experience. I am very proud of them and we are all now hoping to bring home the Professional Beauty award for ‘Beauty Salon of the Year 2013’

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


Winter Planters By Pippa Greenwood Even if you’re sure you’re not going to venture into your garden much this winter, make sure you have every possible encouragement by creating a winter planter or two. They will not only look gorgeous from the warm comfort of your house, but will also help to coax you outside from time to time. Choose a larger container as it’s more likely to protect the roots on the plants due to the greater volume of compost. I’d avoid any container less than 30cm (12in) diameter if possible. Any container will insulate the roots a little, but one made from thick wood (such as a wooden trough or window box, or a half-barrel) will be very effective. Good quality, fairy chunky plastic also works quite well. Try to avoid metal as this tends to conduct cold. Warm undergarments are all the rage for winter planters. A lining of bubble-wrap polythene or even a few layers of old fabric or carpet, sandwiched between the sides of the container and the compost will help to keep both compost and roots warm. If you live in a particularly cold area, or simply want to decrease the risk of winter damage further, try to position winter planters out of the windiest areas. If possible place them fairly close to a house wall on the south or west side as this will help to provide a little extra warmth. You’ll be amazed at the range of plants available at your local garden centre for adding winter colour and interest to pots and planters. Some of my favourites are the universal or other winter flowering pansies or even hardier smaller flowered violas. For some seriously sturdy winter colour, try the winter flowering heathers as these make a good base for the display and you can then add trailing plants such as variegated ivies to help provide extra colour, texture and interesting leaf shapes. All these plants will last for years, not just the winter months. At this time of year, garden centres may offer very tiny versions of shrubs such as skimmias, Pieris or hollies and many of the dwarf conifers. They will provide good colour and interest in a container for a year or two and can then be planted in your garden to reach their full size. In warmer areas, you can add bright patches of colour to your display using the ‘winter cherry’ or solanum which has bright yellow and orange fruits. You could also use a few winter flowering cyclamen but these definitely need a very sheltered spot such as a window box on a protected wall. Don’t forget to add in a few early spring flowering bulbs such as miniature narcissus, crocus and miniature iris. Hide them beneath the roots of your winter bedding plants; you’ll forget


they are there until they burst out in spring. Visit Pippa’s website and sign up for ‘Grow Your Own with Pippa Greenwood’. Choose from a fantastic selection of vegetables that Pippa will send to you at just the right time for planting AND each week you receive an email telling you all you need to know to ensure great results – from just £29 for up to 66 garden-ready plants.

Lumley Garden & Pet Supplies Stainsbridge Mill, Gloucester Road, Malmesbury, Wiltshire, SN16 0AJ Tel: 01666 822325 E-mail:

     Top Leading Brands of Food & Treats  Own Label Premium Dog Food  Bowls, Toys & Accessories  Beds & Cushions  Wild Bird Food & Products inc .Live

Food “For you and your pet’s every need.” Delivery service Available.

To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

    

Casement Windows Bay Windows Tilt and Turn Sliding Sash Shaped Windows

    

Composite doors Entrance doors French doors Stable doors Patio doors

SHARPES Property Maintenance Limited

01666 840042 07720717902

•Roof line products available  Fascias  Soffits  Guttering •Replaced or Repaired •Window and Door repairs •Locks • Hinges • Handles •Replacement glass units

A - Rated Energy Efficient Double Glazing Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


A Very Vintage Christmas It’s mid December and your newly-bought Christmas tree is standing naked in the corner of your living room. So it’s to the loft, garage or shed to dig out that battered old box of decorations. If your box is anything like mine, you’ll probably find a past-its-best fairy with drooping wings, some purple and silver baubles from the Millennium and two crushed crackers from last year’s Christmas lunch (couldn’t bear to throw them away) tangled together with swathes of tinsel, garlands, non-functioning fairy lights and springs of plastic holly. Most of my hoard is cheap, garish and ultimately disposable. But there’s one very special part of the collection that I will never throw away. It’s a treasured set of old-style, hand painted tree decorations, made out of wafer thin glass. Vintage tree ornaments are an evocative sight for those of us who were children in the 1950s and 60s: each year when I unwrap my collection it takes me back to a time when Christmas seemed truly magical and exciting. Although I understand the reasons why hanging delicate glass baubles on the Christmas tree – within grabbing distance of little hands - is no longer a good idea, it’s sad to think that such beautiful items are no longer readily available. The tradition of making glass tree decorations dates back to 17th century Bohemia (the modern day Czech Republic) and Germany. Today’s familiar ball shapes had their origins at a place called Lauscha in Germany, where legend has it they were first created when glass blowers competed to see who could blow the largest sphere before the molten glass popped. Those that survived were kept by the glassmakers’ wives, swirled with silver nitrate and sold at local markets as magic talismans, offering protection and blessing during the holy season. In 1848 a picture of the young Queen Victoria's Christmas tree, hung with decorations brought from her husband Prince Albert’s native Germany, was published in the Illustrated London News. This sparked a copycat craze throughout Europe and soon whole families in the town of Lauscha were employed to mass-produce decorations – the menfolk blowing the glass and the women and children painting and finishing the ornaments. Later that century, German immigrants brought the same passion for glass decorations to America. Thanks to entrepreneur Frank Woolworth - who bought millions for his popular chain stores - what began as a cottage industry in Lauscha became an international phenomenon. By the mid-20th century new molding techniques had sped up mass production and reduced the cost of manufacture. In addition to the more conventional round and oval shapes, there were decorations shaped like musical instruments, stars, lanterns, mushrooms, snowflakes, snowy cottages and little figures of Santa Claus. My favourite ones were the


By Claudia Leaf

exotic birds with silky fibre glass tails that clipped onto your tree and trembled like real birds every time the branches moved. Nowadays most Christmas tree ornaments are made out of plastic, but if you do happen to find a Lauschan treasure lurking at the bottom of your decorations box, take good care of it. Vintage tree ornaments are becoming highly collectable and you can find sets on Ebay and other online auction sites for between £15 and £30.

To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Call in today for a free tyre check with our tyres at Low Low prices Tyres Exhausts Brakes Batteries MOT Car Recovery

PITSTOP TYRES All makes of servicing available Wide range of tyres in stock Four wheel laser alignment MOT by appointment

TEL: 01666 824084 MOBILE: 07501 464821 We are a family run business and our aim is to keep you safe on the road, offering you a friendly and professional service with competitive prices. Unit 1, Whitewall Ind Est, Easton Grey, Malmesbury, Wilts, SN16 0RD.

Free pick up and drop off within the Malmesbury area

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


An Ode To Great Britain After a summer of Olympic glory and unbridled Jubilee celebrations, the British people are buzzing with a strangely unfamiliar hum of national pride. Great Britain is great again, and for the first time in ages there would appear to be a general consensus that, as an island, we done good. I think this is fantastic, I really do, and I'm certainly not here to complain about the widespread feeling of goodwill. But one small thing about it does bug me - and that's the fact, quite simply, I've always liked it here, gold medals or no, and I think it's just a wee bit fair-weather that, now that we're unexpectedly good at sport and fireworks, it's suddenly 'okay' to love Britain. For me, many of the things people decry about this place - the unpredictable weather, the self-effacing attitudes - are precisely the things I like most about it, and the fact that we've now conclusively proved we can ride a weird bike around a massive salad bowl quicker than anyone else has frankly almost nothing to do with it, in my opinion. My band performed in Bordeaux this weekend. I've stuck around with my better half for a croissant-fuelled holiday in the French sun, and I think this may be what has led me to mull over this particular subject. You see, while I do like France, it does irritate me that us Brits have traditionally fetishised the place so heavily. 'Oh, France,' we intone as a nation, 'you're so much better than England. We wish we could live in you all the time with your relatively low rates of heart disease and your massive tomatoes, instead of being forced to live in this hapless crud-hole with all the rain and street crime'. But I think it's unfair to compare the place you holiday with the place you live. It's a bit like those kids of divorced parents who end up favouring the one that takes them to Legoland once a month over the one who cleans their pants EVERY SINGLE DAY. We're convinced France has a 'better quality of life' because, while we're here, we just sit around eating cheese in the sun. Please don't think of this as France-bashing - it's obviously a terrific place for the most part - but I do rather feel that we've historically given old Blighty a hard time in comparison. As things stand, I'll be interested to see whether our current state of bonhomie lasts into the winter, or whether we'll simply return to complaining about absolutely everything, absolutely all of the time. If that does happen, then at the risk of sounding bolshy my feeling is that if you really do dislike Britain as much as you say you do, the world is full of places where it's constantly sunny and nobody ever does any work (in other words, if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen - or rather, if it's too cold for you where you are, please bugger off to the kitchen, because it's plenty warm in there).


by Chris Russell

Rural France: yes, it may look pretty... but try buying a loaf of bread on a Sunday afternoon. Ain't happening.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go and tie a handkerchief round my head and sit on the promenade in the rain eating jellied eels and listening to Vera Lynn. Lovely jubbly. Chris plays piano in South London power-pop band The Lightyears.

Foxley Plumbing & Heating Oil Boiler Installation, Servicing & Repairs Oil Tank Replacement Heating Installation & Repairs Bathroom Installations Unvented Cylinder Systems NO JOB TOO SMALL

Tim Hibbard Email

(01666) 822863 or 07966462202

To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


Seasonal Recipe These delightful mini fruit and nut topped cakes are perfect for giving as a festive foodie present. Simply wrap in clear cellophane and tie with gold ribbon or place in small gift boxes. Makes 9 Ready in 4 hours

Mini Christmas Cakes FOR THE CAKE • 250g butter, softened • 250g dark muscovado sugar • 4 medium eggs, beaten • 350g plain flour • 2 tsp ground mixed spice • ½ tsp ground cinnamon • ½ tsp ground cloves • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon • 800g mixed dried fruit • 100g glace cherries, rinsed, dried and chopped • 100g chopped mixed nuts FOR THE DECORATION • 750g marzipan • Icing sugar, for dusting • 4 tbsp apricot jam, warmed and sieved • Mixed coloured glace cherries, walnut halves, Brazil nuts and chopped dried apricots

Minety Lamb Grass fed Jacob lamb will be ready for delivery to your freezer in November. Can be jointed to suit (half legs, racks, double chops) From £100 per whole lamb (£6.50 per kilo) Please ring Alex Dupree

01666 860293 07775 770666 22

METHOD Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/gas 2. Grease and line the base and sides of a 20cm square cake tin with a double thickness of greased, greaseproof paper. Place the butter and sugar in a large bowl and cream together until pale and fluffy. Gradually beat in the eggs. Sift together the flour and spices then fold into the creamed mixture. Fold in the lemon zest, dried fruit, glace cherries and nuts and mix thoroughly. Spoon the mixture into the prepared cake tin and smooth the surface. Use the back of a metal spoon to make a slight dip in the centre (this will help to give an even rise). Bake in the preheated oven for 3¼ - 3 ½ hours or until firm to the touch and a skewer inserted into the centre of the cake comes out clean. Leave to cool in the tin. When the cake is completely cold, use a sharp knife to cut it into 9 smaller square cakes. Brush the sides of each cake with a little apricot jam. Divide the marzipan into 9 pieces. Dust a surface lightly with icing sugar and roll each piece out to a strip long enough to go around each cake. Wrap the strips around the cakes pinching the ends together to seal. Top each cake with a selection of cherries, nuts and apricots. Tie a ribbon around each cake if liked.

Foot Health Care

Sina Ohms MCFHP MAFHP Foot Health Practitioner Corns-Nail Trimming-Verrucae-Hard SkinAthlete’s Foot-Ingrown Toenails-Nail InfectionsCracked Heels (Fissures)-Nail Cutting The Chippenham Natural Therapy Centre T:01249 443390 The Oxford Practice, Malmesbury T:01666 824 560 Corsham Chiropractic Clinic T: 01249 716683 Home Visits T: 01666 838683 M:07593324128

To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

14a High Street, Malmesbury, Above A4 Stationers

Aromatherapy, Reflexology, Hot Stone Massage, LAVA shell Massage, Hopi Ear Candling, Environ Anti-aging Facials, Manicures, Pedicures, Waxing, Eye Lash Tinting, Electrolysis and Spray Tans, Collagen Stimulation Therapy now available ‘Gift Vouchers available’ For more information, please call Deborah on 01666 829056 Member of Embody Complementary Therapists Association & British Association of Beauty Therapy and Cosmetology

Charlotte English Sports and Remedial Massage If you suffer from: I can offer Sports, •sports injury •backache Remedial, Deep Tissue and •joint pain or restricted Holistic Massage as well as strapping and taping movement •headaches (including Kenesio taping •neck or shoulder favoured by some problems•need rehabiliOlympic athletes). tation following surgery To discuss your needs & •or would like to improve book an appointment please contact 01666 823986 or your sports performance 07875096616

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts



To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Allergy or Intolerance? Food allergies occur when the body’s immune system acts against a protein within a food known as the allergen. Antibodies are produced as part of this response and a complex chain of events leads to the release of histamine. This causes symptoms such as eczema, asthma, rashes, rhinitis, and conjunctivitis and, in its most severe form, life threatening anaphylaxis. Symptoms are often seen within minutes after exposure to the allergen. Food intolerances don’t involve the immune system and are rarely life threatening. Reactions tend to occur hours or days after ingesting the culprit food. The reaction is due to an inability to properly digest a food. The most common childhood food intolerance is lactose intolerance, where the body doesn’t produce enough lactase (the enzyme that breaks down lactose), the sugar found in milk. Symptoms of food intolerance vary enormously but include nausea and vomiting, diarrhoea, abdominal pain, skin irritation and changes to the mucus linings of the nose and throat.

not be accepted.

In 2010 the UK’s first guidelines for the diagnosis of food allergies in children were drafted by the National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE). NICE advises GPs and other health professionals how to match clinical histories with symptoms in order to prompt investigations into the possibility of food allergies. NICE also stresses that high street allergy testing is not valid as a diagnosis of food allergy. It states that inaccurate diagnosis can put children at risk of nutritional deficiency through inadequate dietary intakes when foods are avoided unnecessarily.

We consulted with a paediatric nutritionist, who strongly advised us not to omit anything from a child’s diet unless absolutely necessary and most definitely only on the instruction of a medical practitioner such as a doctor or specialist consultant. There is also a growing study of evidence that omitting foods from children’s diets is actually increasing food allergies, which are becoming more and more common in today’s society where children are allowed to become fussy eaters.

Identifying foods containing allergens is not as straightforward as it may seem – some foods are obvious, e.g. wheat in bread, but other allergenic ingredients also have a wide variety of names. Allergies and Intolerances in Childcare Within any childcare setting, food allergies and intolerances need to be treated seriously and procedures for catering for special diets need to be in place and closely monitored. In a childcare setting some recipes can be adapted and served to all the children in the nursery, while others need to be specially prepared.

At Tiggers we have a strict policy that only excludes foods that children are allergic to and for this we also carry out a full health care plan, which also requires hospital and doctors notes. Children with intolerances must be checked out by doctors as otherwise we are inadvertently causing children to become fussy eaters, leading to eating disorders in adolescence or earlier and are also depriving a child of a nutritionally balanced diet.

Banana Risotto Ingredients: serves a family of 4: 1.5 ltrs milk 50g (2oz) soft brown sugar 100g (4oz) unsalted butter 250g (10oz) Arborio (risotto) rice 4 large bananas, peeled and chopped 50g (2oz) sultanas

Method: 1. Put the milk, sugar and sultanas into a saucepan, and bring to simmering point. 2. Remove from the heat, in another pan, melt the butter. Add the rice and stir until the grains are coated. 3. Add 1 of the chopped bananas and a ladle of the sweetFood preparation and service to large numbers of children ened milk and stir continuously. Continue adding the milk a means that mistakes can easily be made – therefore the setting should have a clear policy of food allergy and intoler- ladle at a time and stirring until you have a creamy sauce and the rice is al dente. ance which is made available to parents, which should 4. Stir in the remaining bananas and serve immediately. outline the special diets catered for and the evidence of • For milk free diets, use pura dairy free spread and soya diagnosis of food allergy or intolerance required before a child is placed on a special diet. Usually this takes the form milk. of a letter from the child’s GP, a dietician or a specialist allergy clinic. High street and internet allergy tests should

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts



BUILDING WORKS •New builds •Extensions •Barn & loft conversions •Groundworks


PROPERTY REFURBISHMENTS •Plastering •New bathrooms •Painting •Tiling & floor tiling

LANDSCAPING •Stonewalls •Patios •Fencing OFFICE: 01666


•Kitchens •Wardrobes •Doors •Skirting & stud walls

ROOFING •Stone & slate roofing •Dorma & Velux windows •New roofs

MOBILE: 07788

416875 WOODLANE KENNELS & CATTERY Bath Road, Willesley, Glos. GL8 8QX

Tel: 01666 880314 Email

Est. over 20years by Gill Butler, Veterinary Nurse. Small, family run business with heated facilities and daily walks at no extra cost. Elderly/pets on medication accepted. Grooming and pet supplies available.


To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Slippy, Unsightly Paths & Patios? Make your path safe by removing the slippy algae Using Super-Heated Water System From £6/m2 (minimum charges apply) Tel 01666 841338 Mob 07968 105785 PAINTING & DECORATING ALL FEMALE TEAM •All exterior & interior work undertaken •Advice on colours and soft furnishings •Suppliers of fabric, flooring & accessories PRACTICAL, AFFORDABLE, INTERIOR SOLUTIONS

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts



To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Pebbles Hypnotherapy

Helen Breward Hypnotherapist BA (Hons), DipCAH, HPD 01793 854242 or 07561 544511 Need help withWeight management Anxiety/stress Stop smoking Phobias Confidence

Stop smoking now £100 for a single session -was £120 NEW - stop smoking £130, for initial stop-smoking + a follow up session.

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts



To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

New Year—New Smile 

Painfree dentistry

Full hygiene services

White fillings

Rapid Orthodontic treatment

Quality Crown & Bridgework

Mini Dental Implants

Tooth Whitening

Payment Plans

Sedation available

NHS treatment for Children

If you are looking for a friendly and professional dental team to replace a lost filling, whiten your smile or undertake a full smile makeover then contact us today for a Welcome Pack... 21 St Mary’s Street, Malmesbury 01666 822220

A Little About –Barley Mow When did you start your business and Why? Barley Mow has been in its present location since 1985. Bruce Morden bought in in 1997, and Rory McNulty started in 1990, and became a partner in 2002. Describe the events in your typical day. Each day we do a variety of treatments ( such as cosmetic dentistry, fillings) as well as all the checkups! Ad hoc treatments of dental pain, broken teeth, lost filings, infections, etc . On the pleasurable side of dentistry Rory is presently enjoying doing implants and Bruce straightening teeth. What is your favourite local shop? Wild food company – so much in such a small space What is your favourite local venue? Both of us love walking in Westonbirt Arboretum If you didn't live here, where would you like to live and why? Bruce has an Australian passport, so anywhere in Oz, and Rory like to be by the sea. We set up our own business because.... We became partners in the Barley Mow – in Bruce’s case because I lived a half mile away and it made sense, and in Rory’s case, Mr Dixey & Lewis offered him a job and he has never felt the urge to leave. Best thing that's happened to you recently? Rory – birth of his daughter and Stoke playing in the FA cup final. Bruce had a once in a lifetime cruise for his 30th wedding anniversary. Favourite one liner or silliest thing you've heard. The Government assuring us that the changes to the NHS dentistry in 2006 would be good for patients and dentists. Your future goal? To stay abreast of developments and regulatory changes in dentistry and keep providing the best service possible for our patients

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


Colourful Cuba

by Solange Hando

‘It’s the most beautiful land human eyes have ever seen’, said Christopher Columbus as he marvelled at this gem of an island, its lush mountains and virgin beaches lapped by the clear waters of the Caribbean, barely 100 miles from Florida. In this once troubled land, history is always within reach, but the real charm lies in the ever changing scenery and colourful cities. Take Santiago de Cuba, nestling on a vast aquamarine bay meandering, almost deserted, in and out of the mangrove, with its sturdy del Morro fortress and Granma island where rickety houses on stilts jostle along the shore. Beyond the winding lanes, the grand churches and colonial buildings festooned in bougainvillaea, coffee plantations climb up the slopes of the Sierra Maestra, among flame and papaya trees, wild lemon and pines. Up there at nearly 4000 feet, the air is cool and on a clear day, the panorama over Cuba’s second city dazzles you with colour and light. It’s a fair drive across the island but the best way to discover the rural heartlands; here a grove of carob trees, there the feathery blossom of jacarandas, a patch of cassava or the forlorn chimney of an old sugar mill. Pretty towns are sprinkled around - Camaguey, famous for ballet and clay pots, Sancti Spiritus with its shaded arcades, Cienfuegos, the ‘Pearl of the South’ - set among flowering trees and elegant Italian style buildings.

But the must-do excursion is to the hill town of Vinales, shaded by pine and orange trees, where pretty verandas frame every house in pastel colours. You can take a boat trip on an underground river to the Cave of the Indian Chief, partake of a farmer’s lunch in the forest and enjoy the view at the Jasmine Belvedere, overlooking the limestone hills which rise dragon-like from the valley floor. With its natural beauty and vibrant cities, Cuba is truly enticing.

But framed by mountains clad in jungle and waterfalls, Trinidad is the jewel of them all, the mirror image of a nostalgic island where bicycles and horse-drawn carts outnumber conventional traffic. The heart of the town is a UNESCO site, a maze of colonial buildings, blue, yellow, pink or pistachio green, with beautiful ironwork and red roofs glowing in the sun. In the cobbled alleyways, lace and embroidery flap in the breeze, drums echo in hidden courtyards and on the splendid Plaza Mayor, the old sugar capital enjoys its afternoon siesta. Meanwhile the steam train takes a handful of visitors to Sugar Mill Valley for fabulous views of hills and vales and sleepy villages sheltering under the mango trees. Heading west, luminous rice fields bask in the sunshine, rare birds and sea cows gather on the Zapata peninsula and soon, the capital beckons. Even for seasoned travellers, Havana defies imagination with its swirling kaleidoscope of colours and sounds, stunning palaces and crumbling ruins, wide boulevards and tangled lanes, revamped Cadillacs, side-cars, three-wheeler scooter taxis and elegant horse-drawn carriages for tourists. The craft market sells Cuban dolls and hammocks while flower girls in bright costumes pose for pictures on Cathedral Square. It’s a wonderful dizzying city where you can eat al fresco, escape to nearby beaches, climb up to the fortress or follow the Hemingway trail to the fishing village of Cojimar.


To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

SPANISH LESSONS Any level, beginners to advanced Coaching for exams Will come to your house if required Fiona Melville BA Hons (Oxon) Spanish Please call 01666 840215 / 07711816839


Need A Website? Starter Packages Available ÂŁ250 for 5 pages including email & up to 20 images

Tel: 01666 841338 Mob:07968 872757

Paws for Thought Sophie Francis Professional Dog Walker Experience in canine first aid, training and obedience. Fully insured and references available.

Tel: 01666 840 538 Mobile: 07531057016

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts


Westonbirt Arboretum celebrates the importance of trees in every walk of life A celebration has taken place at the Forestry Commission's National Arboretum at Westonbirt to celebrate a project that engaged new audiences with botanic gardens. The Macular Disease Society, Bristol Drugs Project and Asian women's group Awaz Utaoh took part in the Hidden Voices project led by the Forestry Commission's learning and participation team at Westonbirt Arboretum. The project is part of a national initiative called Communities in Nature; co-ordinated by Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) and funded by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation. Workshops held across the summer at the arboretum included woodland coppicing, learning how foods originate from plants and exploring trees using different senses. Pam Warhurst, Forestry Commission Chair commented: "Engaging communities and local groups with woodlands is a hugely important part of the Forestry Commission's role. "The Hidden Voices project at Westonbirt is a great example of how working with specific groups can encourage a deeper understanding and commitment to our woodlands. The positive feedback from participants shows real engagement and benefits from being involved." As a result of the project, Westonbirt Arboretum has a series of new tree labels and an audio trail for blind and partially sighted people. The tree labels use a yellow background with descriptions written in a large, black font. The downloadable audio trail has been created using sensory descriptions of trees. Both of these have been developed in partnership with the Macular Disease Society. Recipes using tree and plant foods developed by Awaz Utaoh will be published on the arboretum's blog and website and photography taken by members of the Bristol Drugs Project conveying the emotional impact of trees and woodlands will be shared with visitors. Ben Oliver, Forestry Commission learning and participation manager at Westonbirt Arboretum commented "Our visitor statistics show that older people at risk from exclusion, black and minority ethnic groups and disadvantaged adults make up the smallest numbers of Westonbirt's visitors. "We wanted to use this project to explore and overcome barriers, encourage confidence and make Westonbirt Arboretum more interesting and relevant to more people." Pete Weinstock, Bristol Drugs Project group leader, commented: "It [the project] has opened the place up as a broader 'community' resource rather than seeing it as selective or privileged activity to people with the money or their own transport." The learning and participation team at Westonbirt Arboretum was awarded funding for this project in early 2012 and used the grant to develop the series of activities in partnership with their chosen community and social groups. Westonbirt Arboretum is one of four UK botanic gardens in-


volved in the Communities in Nature initiative, run by Botanic Gardens Conservation International (BGCI) and funded by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation. The initiative was inspired by a report into the social role and relevance of UK botanic gardens conducted by the Research Centre for Museums and Galleries at the University of Leicester. The report recommends that botanic gardens work together to reconsider their roles, responsibilities and mission in a world of pressing environmental change. The participating gardens have been writing blogs throughout the project. Visit to find out more.

Piano tuner/ technician Please call Mike 01454 238971

Experts in natural wood flooring

For your solution call Troy on 07523 366945 or email

To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

OPEN SATURDAY MORNINGS The Old Post Office 12 Castle Street Cirencester GL7 1QA

Short-listed for 2011 DENTISTRY AWARDS: “Best Practice”, “Best Team”, “Best Young Dentist”

For all your building needs including:*Repair and Maintenance, Renovation and Conversion, Extensions, Roofing, Decoration *Complete installation of kitchens, bathrooms and wet rooms *Historic Buildings, Listed Buildings, Conservation or New Builds *An established local builder with 38 years experience Call 07979 533310 for free quotation Quality work at realistic prices

The Major’s Retreat

Tel: 01454 218 263 Tormarton THE BEST VALUE COUNTRY PUB IN THE AREA

Sample 1970’s tradition & nostalgia in this unique country pub

The one & only Major’s Retreat Google us and you will find us on top! Check out our reviews on Trip Advisor! “The owner a real character who adds to the pub’s ambiance” “... A real country pub welcome...” “... it doesn’t pretend to be anything it isn’t...” “....real ale—scrumptious food...” Come and see for yourself!

Christmas Menu Available 1st-24th Dec

Xmas Party Bookings Dining Room seats 40 or 60 buffet style

General Dentistry • Dental Implants • Invisalign (invisible braces) • Tooth Whitening • Crowns & Veneers • White Fillings (metal free) • Botox & Dermal Fillers • 0% Finance available •

(subject to status. Typical 0%APR)

Tuesday is Quiz Night- starts 9pm with free nibbles Sunday Roast Lunches & full menu available 12-2.30pm *We like our customers so much we try to spoil them!*

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts










Across 1 South American animal (6)




4 Clans (6) 9 Whirlwind (7)



10 Male duck (5) 13



11 Casseroles (5) 16

12 Surprised (7)


17 19



13 Source of power (11) 18 Cars, buses etc. (7)



20 Dangerous (5) 22 Tacks (5)


23 Graceful (7)

3 Masterpiece (7)

15 Right (7)

24 Eighth month (6)

5 Wireless (5)

16 Lines of a verse (6)

25 Flow (6)

6 Woollen cover (7)

17 Method (6)

Down 1 Painter (6) 2 American handbag (5)



7 Fast (6)

19 Clenched hands (5)

8 Assembled (11) 14 Departing (7)

21 Frighten (5)

To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

 All aspects of interior & exterior decorating to a professional high quality finish  Very competitive rates to suit your budget Free No Obligation Quotation Professional decorating will add value to your property and enhance your working and living environment. Tel:01793 435141 / 07800905006

Frame Visualisation System See your picture framed before buying

Specialist framer of memorabilia, cross-stitches, football shirts, jigsaws, pictures, prints etc. Also dry mounting and laminating SUE’S GALLERY & FRAMING 29A High Street, Cricklade SN6 6AB 01793 759016 Unit 23 Blackworth Industrial Estate, Highworth, Swindon SN6 7NA 01793 764929 Fine Art Trade Guild Commended Framer

Local, friendly, quality finish every time 07979363224 or 07736326269 Email:

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts



To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email


Society meet at La Flambe, Birdcage Walk. All welcome, no Wiltshire ancestry necessary! Free. Contact 01666823507 Saturday 1st December-from 12 noon - 4pm Fayre in The United Reformed Church, St Mary's Street, Malmesbury

Every Sunday (7.30pm) and Thursday (2.30pm) Crudwell Short Mat Bowls - bring flat shoes and we have the woods - Monday 10th. December - Charlton Village Hall at 7.30pm.. Malmesbury Garden Club’s Annual General Meeting New at Crudwell Village Hall comers welcome Tel 01666 823093 Every Monday 1.00 - 3.30pm Malmesbury Physically Handicapped Club. The club is run for the benefit of physiMALMESBURY CHILDREN CENTRE cally handicapped, and elderly, residents of Malmesbury. Mondays– Play together for under 5’s 10-11.30am at We provide a forum where people can meet in a relaxed and friendly environment and enjoy a range of interesting the Children’s Centre in Malmesbury Primary School speakers and recreational pursuits. Transport can be Tuesdays– Parenting Support group 11-12noon then arranged in the immediate Malmesbury area. For further info Baby Time Group 1.30 to 3pm with occasional visits please contact 01666 824351 from the dental and first aid advisors, call 01666 Every Monday—Malmesbury Arts Society meet at St 825566 Mary’s Hall at 7.30pm to paint and draw. All ages welcome. Wednesdays– Childminders Group 10.30 to 12noon

Thursdays– Bumps and Breastfed Babies support group 10.30 to 12noon with visits from the dental and first aid advisors, call 01666 825566 for details. Also many pre booked courses available , from cooking to counselling! Call 01666 825566 or Every Monday from 7:30 -9:30pm during term time Malmesbury Singers meet in Malmesbury Abbey. For further email for details Every Monday Fortnight 1.30-3pm at the Town Hall Malmesbury. Singing for the Brain for carers and people with dementia. Please call the Alzheimer's Society on 01249 443469 for further information.

information visit ‘Every Monday & Thursday – Malmesbury Bridge Club meets for friendly duplicate bridge at Athelstan House, Burton Hill Primary Care Centre complex, at 7 p.m. For details or if you need a partner, contact Richard or Syd Gwyer 01453 860512 Every 2nd Tuesday-7.30pm Lea WI meet at Lea Village Hall Every Tuesday and Thursday- I am the Chairman of the Athelstan Players, a local drama group. We meet in our Club Room (behind the Co-op) (adults only) 7.30 - 10 pm. If you can sing, dance, act or help back stage, new members are always welcome. Please contact 01666 822691 for more information.

Across: 1 Alpaca, 4 Tribes, 9 Tornado, 10 Drake, 11 Stews, 12 Shocked, 13 Electricity, 18 Traffic, 20 Risky, 22 Nails, 23 Elegant, 24 August, 25 Stream. Down: 1 Artist, 2 Purse, 3 Classic, 5 Radio, 6 Blanket, 7 Speedy, 8 Constructed, 14 Leaving, 15 Correct, 16 Stanza, 17 System, 19 Fists, 21 Scare.

Local Information and Useful Numbers BT Fault line 0800 800 151 Gas 0800 111999 Malmesbury Town Council 01666 822 143 Malmesbury Youth Centre 01666 823747 Malmesbury Activity Zone 01666 822533 Library 01666 823611

DOCTORS SURGERIES Most Tuesdays in The Activity Zone from 12.30 to15.30. Malmesbury PCC 01666 825825 Malmesbury Tuesday Club -A sandwich lunch (£3) is folTolsey Surgery Sherston 01666 840270 lowed by board games, a quiz or puzzle or a talk from a Emergency 999 visiting speaker. From time to time we travel to enjoy a meal Police 101 out or to visit a local point of interest. Transport to and from Email: Telephone: 01666 the club can usually be arranged. For further details ring 818 143 or 07919 288 977 Bob Turner on 01666823620. Whilst every care is taken to ensure accuracy, the publishers cannot responsibility for loss, damage colour variation or omission Every Wednesday—Members (aged 60 and over) meet at accept caused by error in the printing of an advert. All artwork is accepted noon in the Wesleyan Room of the Town Hall to see friends on the strict condition that permission has been given for use in the and enjoy a 2 course lunch. Details from Helen Churchill publication. Adverts are accepted on the understanding that de01666 840080 scriptions of goods and services are fair and accurate. Malmesbury Every Wednesday– Malmesbury Arts Society meet at Malmesbury Town Hall 2-4pm to paint and draw. All Welcome. Please bring a table covering. Cost £1. Every 4th Wednesday of month—Wiltshire Family History

Connections does not officially endorse any advertising material included within this publication. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in any retrieval system or transmitted in any form—electronic, mechanical, photocopying or otherwise—without the prior consent of the publisher. Publisher: Malmesbury Connections Printer: Jam Print

Please mention Malmesbury Connections when responding to adverts



To advertise call 07919288977 or 01666 818143 or email

Issue 51 December 2012  

Malmesbury Connections local community advertising magazine