Bath Life – issue 366

Page 1

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Issue 366/25 May – 8 June 2018/£3








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ABOVE Take a look inside Bath’s most stylish garage conversion (page 130); LEFT Quirky garden accessories are a must for summer (page 105)

elcome to our new-look magazine! It’s had a cover-to-cover revamp, it’s chunkier, and there are brand-new sections inside. One of those sections, as you may have already spotted on our front cover, is ‘Residence’, in which we’re invited into locals’ homes (each with something unusual, exciting or astounding about them) for a behind-the-scenes look at the distinctive interiors. In this week’s Residence, take the virtual tour of a disused garage behind the Royal Crescent, which has been transformed, by owners Philippa May and her partner, former Bath Rugby captain Guy Mercer, into a chic, modern, pared-back home, that no longer looks like a parking spot (page 130). We have plenty more design inspiration for you on page 36, where architects from in and around Bath tell us what changes they’d like to see in the city if they could wave a magic wand, lift the strict limitations and wish for anything their hearts desired. Our big interview is with sporting star Eboni Beckford-Chambers, who opens up about her desire to settle down (page 66). And if you’re feeling peckish, I’d suggest turning to either page 78, on which we review The Pig near Bath, or page 84, where you’ll find a handful of the city’s most impressive foodie pubs. We’ve kept plenty of our original pages, too, including our shopping page which, this week, focuses on gift ideas for Father’s Day (page 106); our Local Lives page, quizzing a Mary Shelley and Frankenstein expert (page 154), and our What’s On guide to new dates for your diary (page 56). See you in a fortnight…

LISA EVANS Follow us on Twitter @BathLifeMag Instagram @bathlifemag



Issue 366/25 May – 8 June 2018


055 ARTS INTRO Lose yourself in Kaffe Fassett’s

vibrant world of floral fun and pure imagination

056 WHAT’S ON Time to update the events diary 073 BOOKS Step aside, fictional crime stories – Nic

Bottomley brings us a trio of real-life courtroom dramas that have to be read to be believed


078 RESTAURANT We try porky bits, garden bits and

all the delicious bits in-between at The Pig near Bath

084 FOODIE PUBS The best inns and abodes in the

area, raising the bar for relaxed high-class dining

093 TAKE 5 Chief brewer at Bath Ales talks hops, hares

and the ultimate beer to pair with a spicy curry



094 FOOD & DRINK NEWS Bath Water’s birthday, new

pizzeria Franco Manca and tea at Lucknam Park

098 DAD’S DRINK Angela Mount goes beyond wines

this issue with a sublime choice of Father’s Day bottles


105 INTRO The mischevious monkey lamps that’ll look

wildly stylish on walls, tables, or hidden in hedges

106 EDITOR’S CHOICE A pick of locally sourced

Father’s Day prezzies your dad will actually want


066 THE BIG INTERVIEW Eboni Beckford-Chambers

on balancing life, law training and netball


106 36



Issue 366/25 May – 8 June 2018


115 BUSINESS INSIDER Who’s moving, shaking,

inventing and innovating this issue?


036 ARCHITECTS Local architects share what their

dream Bath would look like, planning consent aside

130 RESIDENCE Peek inside this seriously quirky city

pad – a converted garage-cum-warehouse-cum-pub

141 SHOWCASE Readers, meet Tylehurst – one of

Lansdown’s finest Grade-II listed detached houses. It’s a beautiful stone villa with guest cottage to match





26 Editor Lisa Evans Deputy Editor Lauren Scott Managing Editor Deri Robins Senior Art Editor Andrew Richmond Graphic Design Megan Allison Cover Design Trevor Gilham Contributors David Flatman, Angela Mount, Matt Bielby and Nic Bottomley Group Advertising Manager Pat White Deputy Advertising Manager Justine Walker Account Manager Sophie Speakman Account Manager Annabel North Sales Executive Polly Jackson polly.jackson@mediaclash. Production/Distribution Manager Sarah Kingston Deputy Production Manager Kirstie Howe Production Designer Matt Gynn Chief Executive Jane Ingham Chief Executive Greg Ingham Bath Life MediaClash, Circus Mews House, Circus Mews, Bath BA1 2PW 01225 475800 @The MediaClash © All rights reserved. May not be reproduced without written permission of MediaClash. We’re a Bath-based publisher, creative agency and event organiser Magazines Our portfolio of regional magazines celebrates the best of local living: Bath, Bristol, Cardiff, Exeter and Salisbury. We also publish foodie mag Crumbs (, @CrumbsMag) and wedding title Vow (@VowMag). Agency From the design and build of websites to digital marketing and creating company magazines, we can help. Events We create, market, promote and operate a wide variety of events both for MediaClash and our clients Contact:




Kevin McCloud was proud to attend the charity reception

Care & Community


Children’s Hospice South West (CHSW) was first registered as a charity in 1991 and celebrated its 25th Anniversary in 2016, but last month a more formal Civic Reception was held in Bath’s Mayor’s Parlour, to thank staff, local supporters and volunteers of the charity. The hospice is dedicated to making the most of short and precious lives, providing care for children and their families. The help that CHSW receives from the Bath community is invaluable, and enables it to provide the highest level clinical expertise to children with life-limiting conditions, as well as supporting all family members from the point of diagnosis and into bereavement. Mayor and councillor Ian Gilchrist says, “It was a great pleasure to be able to host this evening in support of the Hospice, and pleasing to see so many supporters willing to come out. I wish them every success for the future.” For more:

Bouncing for Bath

Next month, the wider Bath community is invited to Odd Down Playing Fields to take part in The Try Games, an inclusive day of sporting fun, friendship and fundraising for special needs academy Three Ways School. On 3 June, people of all abilities can take part in a variety of sports, including football, martial arts, a fun run, and… running on custard. Local sports clubs, coaches and activity leaders are supporting the event, along with Sir Chris Hoy, Olympic gold medallist. “The Try Games demonstrates the great power of sport,” he says. “It brings people together and nothing is off limits.” Ciara Davies, organiser of the Try Games, says, “As a parent of a child at Three Ways, and another in mainstream school, it is amazing for our community to have the opportunity to access each other’s worlds.” The sponsorship raised will provide Three Ways School with the much-needed funds for sporting and social after-school clubs, as well as new equipment. For more: NICK COLE

Clean Streets The trained-up group go high-vis


Traffic fumes are bad news for Bath, but local residents have recently been making steps to improve the city’s air quality and reduce unnecessary pollution from idling vehicles. On a weekend morning last month, a group of concerned residents took to the streets to encourage drivers to turn off their engines when parked. Taking inspiration from a similar London-based campaign, the initiative Idling Action Bath is backed by Bath Living Streets and supported by B&NES council. Volunteers (calling themselves Clean Air Champions) go out in pairs and engage with drivers in a persuasive, nonconfrontational way – cue the charm offensive. Volunteer Ped Asgarian, says, “I was pleasantly surprised by the reactions of the drivers my partner and I spoke to. They all happily agreed to switch off their engines. It’s simply a matter of education and changing habits.” The next local action event is on 21 June, and training takes place at the Bath YMCA. For more:



One young rider strides ahead on a balance bike

Cycle for Charity


Action-packed and ready to roll: it’s the Bath Boules Week

Bath Boules



Clucking good news for wellbeing on the farm


Bath’s Queen Square is set to come alive again this summer with the biggest-ever Bath Boules Week. Kicking off things is a pop-up feast from renowned local chef Gordon Jones, and the wild programme of events continues with a free ‘School of Boules’ practice sesh; an evening with Glastonbury’s Michael Eavis; the Creative Bath Awards and Summer Party, sponsored by Bath Spa University; and, for footie fans, a public showing of England versus Tunisia on 18 June. “We can’t wait to host such a jam-packed week of festivities in the heart of the city,” says Boules event director Steph Dodd. “It doesn’t get much more Somerset-cool than having our own audience with legend Michael Eavis.” Tickets are selling fast, and for a good cause, too, as all proceeds are dispersed by the Boules Trust to local charities. Bath Boules Week is 10 – 18 June, and is sponsored by Royds Withy King. For more:


Cycling is a great way to improve your health and fitness, and on 3 June two active events are being organised by Cotswolds-based company Andy Cook Cycling. The Castle Combe Family Cycling Day will be held – for the ninth year running – in conjunction with the popular Severn Bridge Cycling Sportive. For the family day, the kids are invited to come and take part in the Go Ride Challenge, where they can learn new bike skills, compete in short races and win prizes. The Severn Bridge Sportive is a fully organised ride, with either a 60 or a 100-mile route through some of the most beautiful countryside our area can offer – the perfect challenge for keen long-distance riders. Get everyone in the family pedalling, as funds raised will be going to charity partner the National Autistic Society. For more:

Wellness Grant


Bath already has a raft of inspiring projects that improve mental and physical well being, but a new community wellness grant of £17,000 is set to specifically combat loneliness and isolation. Over 16 organisations applied for funding, but the grants (of up to £2,000 each) were finally awarded to just 10 local community groups and charities, including Bath City Farm. They’ll be launching an offshoot group run by long-term members of ‘Make & Bake’, which is a therapeutic crafting and baking project. Virgin Care is responsible for the programme as part of its contract with Bath Council and the local NHS. It funds a number of grants each year, and is managed by the Quartet Community Foundation, who run the application process. “There are some amazing groups in the area, who work with people to increase their independence, confidence, self-esteem and skills,” says Sue Turner, chief executive of Quartet. “The grants awarded will support these groups in that vital work.” For more:

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Ann Phelps, Claire Watson and Susan Fowler

Tereza Heslop

Andie Greenwood and Emma Foster

Claire Watson and Amy Williams MBE

Amy Williams MBE

Lucy Burnford, Angela Macausland, Lois Chang, Kitty Dimbleby, Katie Cutting, Rachel Quarrell, Amy Williams MBE


A glitzy fashion show was recently held at Sweaty Betty to celebrate the seventh year of Bath’s Yummy Mummies – the ladiesonly training studio for women of all ages, mothers or not. In true BYM style, there was plenty of glam. Seven fabulous ladies, including Olympic gold medalist Amy Williams, modelled the new Sweaty Betty collection of active wear. BA1 hair was on hand to tame tresses, and a make-up artist from Jolly’s added the finishing touches. After The Juice Collective had provided some obligatory champagne, the ladies were ready to strut their stuff. Lucy Burnford and Kattie Cutting

Photos by Bonnie Rose;

Amy Williams MBE The lovely ladies line up in their new outfit choices


Et volo idia sum el invelecernam quiducia doloreribus expeditas susAngela sectemMacausland estem

Chloe Harvey, Zac Fennell and Demi Spatchurst


Sue Carruthers and Rosemary Simcox

Cliff Looker and Michelle Miller

Steve Matthews and Robin Phillips


A retirement bash was held on 26 April for (ex) chief executive of Bath Building Society, Dick Jenkins. The evening marked Dick’s transition from full-time work into freedom, after spending 14 years at the helm of the independent society. The Assembly Rooms was a fitting place to formally end Dick’s career, and invited guests gathered to enjoy his leaving speech, sip on fizzy to mark the occasion, and lavish him with some useful (and not so useful) parting gifts. As well as friends, family and colleagues, many other Bathonians attended the event, wanting to wish the figure a fond farewell and thank him for his service to the city. Claire Wynne-Hughes, Martin Broomfield and Kate Jackson

Photos by Nick Cole;

Martin Lang, Max Woodward and Kevin Gray

Tom Gill, Phil Relf, Tom Senior and James Bawa

David Jenkins, Hannah Jenkins, Sally Jenkins, Dick Jenkins and Emma Jenkins Jeanette Massey and Dick Jenkins


Dave Buchan and Noel Broomfield

Dick Jenkins and Kevin Gray


Jeni Hayward, Lyn King and Mike Hayward

Dale Evans and David Halewood

Martin Blake and Lydia Halewood


Selected guests were recently invited for drinks and canapés – what else – to celebrate the new show homes nestled at Tyning Meadows, Bathampton. The shiny development includes 10 detached family homes at the base of the Limpley Stoke Valley, and house shoppers, agents and interested parties got a first-look tour around the roomy abodes, set in their area of outstanding natural beauty. Good weather prevailed, and the tour even allowed guests to throw open the patio doors and enjoy the outside view, taking their glasses of wine al fresco. During this sneak peek, they took in the media room, five bedrooms and four expansive reception areas, while enjoying the space and fresh air of the property – which is within level walking distance of Bath’s city centre. Chloe and Tom Harrison-Temple with baby Max

Photos by Betty Bhandari;

Max and Charlotte Dooling, and Jon Booth Kevin and Penny Murphy, Martin and Sarah Veal

David Mackenzie, Claire and Iain McMurty and Charlie Taylor Tim Gleghorn and Penny and Alastair Gibson


Naomi Pound and David Newton

John and Tina Jones


Loraine Morgan-Brinkhurst MBE and Jamie Breese

Jacqui Lazare, Nicky Banks, Martin Roberts and Colin Glass

Libby and Philip Gambrill


Martin Roberts and trustees of the Martin Roberts Foundation proudly launched the charity at the Victoria Art Gallery. Attended by local businesses and personalities, the evening was an opportunity to meet the super supporters and campaigners. After a drinks reception, Martin gave a heart-warming speech and shared his joy at having the charity’s campaign, ‘Sadsville,’ endorsed by Dame Esther Rantzen DBE, Founder of Childline. Mayor of Bath Ian Gilchrist spoke of his pride in having Bath as the springboard for the work. The Bath-born charity is now set to go national, seeking corporate sponsorship for the production of approximately 1.6 million books that will support children in need across the country. Melanie James and Carole Banwell

Photos by Black Tie Portraits;

Kirsty Roberts and Christine Bailey

Maeve England and Polly Jones Adam Mather and CJ Herrington

Andrea Knight, Clyve Waite, Andrew Thompson and Katherine Tang Maggie Rae, Rosie Joyce and Maddie Difazio-Wright


Martin Roberts and Paul Crossley

Colin Blackburn, Les Redwood and Neil Priscott


Co-founder Bridget Hugo and head chef Rafael give a masterclass in sourdough

Rosie Webber


Donna Lodge Rafael Lima and Viola Hazlerigg

A hands-on launch event at Franco Manca officially introduced the pizzeria company to Bath. Aperol spritzes and plates of Italian fare welcomed local foodies to the restaurant, and founders Guiseppe and Bridget were on hand to impart wine wisdom, explain the provenance of ingredients, and, more importantly, why they’ve chosen the city for their latest outlet. Head chefs showed guests how to knead and spin their own signature sourdough pizza base, and load them with treats and toppings from the Franco Manca kitchen, before firing them in the hot, hot, hot, oven. For more, see page 94. Bridget Hugo

Rafael Lima and Jessica Hope Guests take in the new restaurant space under the railway arches

Dominica Sadowska, Gino Franchini, Agne Guokaite and Anna Rupniewska Giuseppe Mascoli


Sandro Spahiu, Sam Petherick and Rafael Lima


Kate Bargent-Morrish, Lawrence Sanderson and Eva Lopes

Mauro Matta and Kate Bargent-Morrish

Nicola Williams and Sabina Minks


An evening of fizzy, nibbles and good cheer was held on 28 April to celebrate the relaunch of The Good Bear on Bear Flat (formally known as Bear Pad cafe). Owner Mauro Matta invited along dear friends, local businesses, and those who have been fundamental in transforming the space. Guests were wowed by the refreshed interior of on-trend blue hues and brass accents, designed by Kate Bargent-Morrish (pictured). Martin Maggs, Marie Maggs, Sabina Minks and Andrew Bryant

Photos by Mike Thornberry;

Megan Witty of Minerva’s Owls and Martin Longmore

Mo Bryant, Mauro Matta and Val Bryant

Jonathan Davies, Leslie Redwood and Sinead O’Connor

Dominic Bourquin and Patrick Mear

Sarah Ellis and Nigel Stapleton



MHA Monahans recently held a breakfast event at their Pierrepont Street office, for businesses across Bath to peek at their Minerva’s Owls designs. The meet encouraged other would-be sponsors of the public art trail, which is soon to go live around the city. Local companies included Thrings, Lucknam Park, Mowbray Woodwards, Bath Tourism and Bath Young Professionals. “Minerva’s Owls is an initiative of which we’re delighted to be gold sponsors,” says Martin Longmore, partner of MHA. “This was an opportunity to get more local businesses involved.”

Angus Sheppard, Sarah Whittaker and Thomas Snelson

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‘one can achieve rural tranquility within our lovely little city’

never thought I’d leave the countryside. Having moved out of the city a few years ago, I got myself a killer ride-on lawn mower, erected a super outdoor kitchen, purchased the obligatory, upper middle class leather walking boots, and begun not to be terrified of cows (they’re regular killers, by the way), I was all set. “You wait,” warned my smogsmelly city chums, “You’ll be a taxi service once the children start hanging around town.” That never scared me, though, as I like driving and I like listening to trashy murder mystery audiobooks as I do so. So, it’d be a pleasure. Worst case scenario, I’d just order them a taxi on the MediaClash account (I heard one of the team give a cabbie the password once). No, I was there for keeps. Then a move became necessary. Initially I was resistant, but, once it became clear that there really wasn’t a choice (kiddie school stuff), I tried to embrace it. My urban reconversion didn’t take very long. After just a few months of living back in the mixer – if we can really call our city that – I once again feel like I’m set for life, and I think it was yesterday that sealed the deal. I walked the beasts to school – a short, leafy walk that takes in the simply gorgeous and aspirational Sion Hill Place – wandered back, and had a coffee in my hand by quarter to nine. After four pieces of toast and another espresso, I hopped on my smug electric bike and rolled down to the gym for a chubby chap’s workout, surrounded by the belycra’d behemoths and beauties of Bath. Post-sweat, I pressed my smug button and began the climb back up to Lansdown, stopping at the perfect little delicatessen on St. James Square for a takeaway box of tasty and healthy stuff. Now, the garden at home is not big, but it does have some grass and there are indeed some

bushes and trees and shrubs that all but block out the reasonably busy road on which it sits. It’s by no means silent but it’s sufficiently quiet that, beetroot salad on lap, coconut water to hand, dogs sleeppanting in the heat, it’s really not that different from being in the countryside proper. There is less of a bovine pong around the place, but you’re closer to Colonna & Small’s, so there’s always a pay off. I know that not everyone has a garden, and that those that do are of course very lucky, but I also know that there are plenty of perfect little spots around the place in which one can achieve this rural tranquility within our lovely little city. Few of these spots are more than five minutes from where you are right now, so it would seem wasteful not to go and find some of them. Living out in the sticks was lovely and quiet and pretty, but living in Bath is, I reckon, all of that and then some. I’ll never leave town now. Mind you, I have said that before. n

David Flatman is an ex-Bath and England rugby star turned TV pundit and rent-o-mic. Follow him on Twitter @davidflatman Flats is also the exec chef (yes!) and host of the Legendary Friday Night Dinner Party at the Bath Boules, on 15 June. Tickets on the site:


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Local architects on what their dream Bath would look like, and what changes they’d make to the city if they became all-powerful...

The Holburne Museum extension is one of the best examples of contemporary design working well within Bath’s historic setting






Pulteney Bridge, with its sweeping horseshoe-shaped weir, is one of Bath’s most famous sights


t goes without saying that Bath is beautiful. The city is so crammed with awe-inspiring examples of world-renowned architecture, that we’d all do well to make like a tourist and remind ourselves of its magnificence from time to time. But – controversial question, maybe – is it stuck in the past? Some of Bath’s architects seem to think so, or, at least, they believe that the rich tapestry of Bath wouldn’t be harmed by a brave, contemporary twist (Bath was once cited as the ‘graveyard of ambition’ for developers). So, here, the design pros tell us what changes they’d like to see if they could wave a magic wand, lift the strict limitations, and wish for anything their hearts desired…


If they could wave magic wands over the city, this is what fairy-tale Bath would look like for our local architects Batterham Smith Architects, Ben Smith, director “Not so long ago, people flocked to Bath to bathe in the uniquely hot mineral springs. Now, we are choked with car fumes, we are divorced from


our riverfront, and we have an energy-inefficient building stock. Bath needs to regain its health-giving properties: more greenery, fewer cars, and don’t forget the water!” Nick Shipp Architects, Nick Shipp, director “The magic wand is waved for developers, designers and statutory implementers to agree consistency for the renewal and repair of Bath’s urban fabric… and to stick to it. We could discover an invigorated environment with water features and fountains, public art sculptures, trams, craft markets, pedestrianised streets and squares, the use (not abuse) of the river, a world-class auditorium at South Quays, more small independent businesses, and green open space.” Hetreed Ross Architects, Ann Ross, architect director “Once a vital artery supporting trade and distribution to the city, the River Avon at one stage would have been one of the city’s greatest assets. However, as time has moved on, our reliance on river transportation has all but gone. We should be aiming to better connect the city with the river to offer social and cultural spaces to enjoy, and celebrate the importance

The Thermae Bath Spa brings together traditional and contemporary design





Bath Preservation Trust, Dr Amy Frost, senior curator “It’s a controversial answer, but I personally would love to see The Circus without the trees in the centre. To experience it as a purely architectural space, as it was designed to be, would be fascinating. And it would make the impact of the Royal Crescent, with its open landscape in front, even more powerful. “Being more strategic about it, I’d like to see there being an incentive to bring empty listed buildings back into use quicker. It’s such a shame that a city like Bath has the Old King Edward’s building and The Corn Market building, to name but two, left empty. Maybe there should not be a business rates exemption on empty listed buildings, so that developers either get on with developments or sell on.” Aaron Evans Architects, Kevin Murphy, managing director “At a utopian level, it would be great to remove the main trunk roads through the city centre. However, I don’t think even Gandalf could achieve that. At another level, the introduction of green, planted roofs on new buildings could help to reduce the urban heat island effect, absorb rainwater before it becomes run-off into our struggling sewers, improve air-quality and bring nature and increased biodiversity into our city.”


and ever-changing beauty of this major aspect of the cityscape. Recent developments along the western side of the city have begun to redevelop the rundown spaces deserted once the river industries dried up, but they don’t in anyway embrace the river in the same way as other cities, such as Amsterdam. Through intelligent design, the riverside affords the opportunity for Bath to unlock even more character while enabling the river to be reestablished as a focal point. The redevelopment of Bath Rugby stadium will surely enliven the east bank of the river next to the weir.”

Great Pulteney Street is the widest, grandest thoroughfare in Bath

DKA, Elspeth Faulkner, architect “Very high on my wish list would be to install a cycle lift up one of the seven hills of Bath – like Trondheim’s Trampe Bicycle Lift. Bath is a small city which provides great opportunities for alternative modes of transport, such as cycling, trams, walking, and busses.”

I WOULD DO ANYTHING FOR BATH, BUT I CAN’T DO THAT... Architects face many a design limitation, especially in our World Heritage city. Here they give us an insight into just how many eggshells they must tiptoe over

Stride Treglown, Mercedes Baldasarre, architectural assistant “The community and council sometimes see change as a threat to the city’s assets, when, actually, with care, they can be enhanced. I think that the council could allow more change in Bath. Architecture should reflect its time, and good architecture should tell the whole story of a city, not just ‘the old’. I’m not convinced by buildings that try to replicate Georgian architecture in the current times.” Batterham Smith Architects, Ben Smith, director “There’s always someone who’s against any form of change, so this creates challenges, and there are often conflicts between historic fabric and sustainability. We’re always looking for ways to improve energy efficiency of the buildings that we are involved with, but this is complicated when

“good architecture should tell the whole story of a city, not just ‘the old’” working within a historic setting. We are of course all looking forward to the innovative geothermal scheme that is going to heat the Abbey. “In terms of identity, I’d prefer that Bath was known for its architectural excellence as much as it is for its heritage, and this is clearly something that the city can work on.” Moon Bath, Paul Halford, design director “Bath’s beauty is derived from the material that much of it is constructed from. Bath stone is beautiful, but incredibly expensive. The challenge it brings to design is how much of the budget it absorbs and how other aspects of a building’s design or layout needs to flex in order to pay for it. Designers will need to consider how this material is used to complement the character of Bath, but in tandem with other contemporary materials. “When it comes to whether the council has the right balance between preserving history and allowing for positive change, that’s a difficult question. The public side of listed buildings warrants protection, because we all benefit from that protected character. The private side of listed buildings, however, is, in our view, private. Making considered and sensible changes to internal layouts should not be as difficult as it is, and this is without doubt the biggest area of complaint we hear from homeowners.”




The Royal Crescent has become a world-renowned icon and an important representation of Georgian architectural innovation

SRA Architects, Emma McDermott, architect “When designing buildings in Bath, I often challenge myself by questioning, ‘What actually is pastiche, and what is it about yesterday’s architecture that’s so appealing?’ I probably have a different answer every time. But I do enjoy the design challenge of considering what quality about the existing context is considered so highly, and providing a design which learns from it. Bath has a wonderfully rich and surprisingly varied history in its existing architecture, and, as an architect, the opportunity to design in such a stimulating and inspiring context is a real privilege.” Nash Partnership, Daniel Lugsden, partner “In all places you hope to change, you must get under the skin. Bath especially, as a World Heritage site, requires a very thorough understanding before you can step forward. If you take the time and have the skills you need to ensure you understand the influence your work will have, there should not really be limitations. Limitations suggests that you can’t do things and, in Bath, perhaps, yes, there are limitations due to the protected nature of a lot of the city. However, good design means it responds to the context, the city and its ambitions, balances the issues it has and is likely to face, and aspires to make a balanced change for the city to move forward with.” Hetreed Ross Architects, Ann Ross, architect director “It’s always uplifting to see contemporary buildings in the city and adjoining villages. Positive change isn’t just about building-design, though; the demands of 21st-century life, materials and methods have to be accommodated within listed buildings, and sometimes that can be a challenge.”


‘what is it about yesterday’s architecture that’s so appealing?’ CMG Architects, Jason Daye, architect “Many of our projects are listed buildings, and conservation work is central to our portfolio. Sensitivity to context is vital in Bath. The recurring theme, in terms of limitations, is how do we respectfully and effectively insulate and damp-proof the built fabric of the city, making it fit for an energy-conscious future? Sometimes we, as users, must accept the limitations of the Georgian built fabric and adjust our expectations accordingly. “Achieving the right balance is vital and the council’s task is not an easy one. On the one hand, it has the unenviable task of holding back the hordes of developers looking to exploit a newly set precedent, but on the other hand, nobody (planners included) wants to live in a museum. “Empty plots around the city are being developed into student accommodation; might we be reaching saturation point? On the plus side, at least they’re not all historical pastiches. Georgian pastiches seem to be on the rise, not only at SouthGate and the student housing near Green Park but also the new housing development at Holburne Park. I worry what it says of our culture if new buildings only speak of the past.”


If you want to change or add to your home or business space, these are the top tips from architects on how to get the best out of the planning regs that are in place. Moon Bath, Paul Halford, design director “Planning and conservation officers have a tough job, so approach a planning application with reality and maturity. We’re often asked if it’s a good idea to make an application for more than you want, and to then negotiate back to the actual outcome.” DKA, Elspeth Faulkner, architect “The planning regulations system in Bath is complex, and those who only engage with it sporadically can find it frustrating and ambiguous. Put simply, the best advice is to employ a professional, who will save time and money through informed choices based on experience of dealing with the policies and personalities involved.”


Hetreed Ross Architects, Ann Ross, architect director “The pre-planning application process can be helpful in reaching an approval. We aim to produce clear drawings and statements setting out how our schemes will enhance the local environment, and we work with planning and conservation officers to obtain approvals. It can often feel constrained working with so many listed buildings, but one only has to travel to other less controlled conservation areas to realise why Bath’s so beautiful.”

Some architects think we should make even more of our waterside, and embrace it in the same way that cities such as Amsterdam do

‘We should treat our heritage with respect but not be stifled by it’ Aaron Evans Architects, Kevin Murphy, managing director “The impact of foundations upon the Bath hot springs is one of the limitations of building in Bath, but the protection of Bath’s genius loci – the spirit of the place and local distinctiveness – will always be a determining factor in our city. “Bath was once cited as the ‘graveyard of ambition’ for developers. Major schemes often spent years in planning while local government changes frequently reversed policy decisions made by previous administrations. However, after years of slow growth, we’re now witnessing the emergence of a progressive city. One of the biggest changes of note is the increasing acceptance of taller buildings. Some 18 years ago we proposed a nine-storey building on the riverside (yes, you guessed, student housing) but were advised the city was not ready for such a tall building. Now we see two such buildings constructed at Bath Riverside.”

CMG Architects, Jason Daye, architect “Be nice to your planning officer, follow the guidance, and be prepared to compromise. I’m proud to say that we have only ever had one planning refusal. Often the ideas that get ‘batted back’ during the pre-application conversations wouldn’t have been the most suitable, which sometimes only becomes obvious much later.”


Travelling to other historical cities has given our local architects plenty of ideas to daydream about. These are the approaches they’d love to see emulated in Bath Batterham Smith Architects, Ben Smith, director “I like the Richard Rogers quote, ‘in Florence, classical buildings sit against medieval buildings. It’s that contrast we like’. Roman, Georgian, we are just adding another historic layer to the rich tapestry of Bath, and a brave, contemporary approach can enhance both. We should treat our heritage with respect, but not be stifled by it.” Nick Shipp Architects, Nick Shipp, director “It’s possible to learn lessons from many historic continental European cities that have civic pride as the backbone for standards and environmental value. The ‘powers’ there – an elected mayor, a peer design forum and an informed public – are all good at finding that considered input found in our contemporary moment to augment the historic thread. The result is one that continues to civilise, and the consequence is an improving cultural and social cohesion and strength.”


ARCHITECTS (which were half-heartedly trialled on Julian Road) should be progressively introduced to counteract the dominance of vehicles.” Aaron Evans Architects, Kevin Murphy, managing director “Successful historic cities, such as Rome, Florence, Seville and Barcelona, have great city-centre public realms where the pedestrian, not the car, takes precedent. A high-quality urban environment that is safe, accessible and complemented by public art installations, informal performance spaces, places for people to congregate to eat, drink, laugh and play boules, makes for a more enjoyable, relaxed and attractive backdrop to everyday life. It’s great to now see Bath beginning to embrace the River Avon after so many years of turning its back on it.”



What buildings and spaces do the design professionals love most?

Nash Partnership, Chris Hall, architect “My choice would be Hill Rise on North Road. It was a modernist-style house but a bit rundown, and I think the architects did a great job of bringing the building up to date while keeping its original character.” Stride Treglown, Mercedes Baldasarre, architectural assistant “Ours is a city that works as a whole. The natural surroundings of green hills are a perfect background to the architecture. I also like the industrial buildings on the river.”

DKA, Elspeth Faulkner, architect “The Museum Quarter in Vienna struck a chord when I visited; I was very impressed by the way the public realm unified the old and the unabashed new. Bath could definitely learn from Vienna.”

DKA, Elspeth Faulkner, architect “I appreciate and enjoy Pulteney Bridge. At one point in history, the notion of inhabited bridges was extremely popular. Today, only a very small handful remain – Florence’s Ponte Vecchio, Venice’s Rialto Bridge and Bath’s Pulteney Bridge being classic examples. “The entrance into the city centre along Great Pulteney Street’s wide pavements, past the fountain (often filled with the University students’ playful soap suds) and over Pulteney Bridge never fails to please me. “Living bridges, inhabited by the city’s occupants, are really exciting, and I wonder if we can bring this building typology back into fashion in our cities? Perhaps there is an opportunity with the development of the Bath Quays North and the Bath Quays Bridge? This is a route we take regularly during DKA lunchtime runs, and I often mull over design options as I pass.”

Hetreed Ross Architects, Ann Ross, architect director “I visited Porto – also a World Heritage site – recently. It has some very modern buildings, which are well-designed and therefore add to the city and its architecture, rather than detract from it. Perhaps Bath’s downfall is its relative purity as a Georgian city; it’s a little static, and a little precious – something which was evident, but to a lesser extent in Porto. “Also, Bath is a city for people, not for cars. The shared surface traffic management approaches – common in Scandinavia and Holland –

‘I feel like I’m honoured to view them before they slip away into the mists of time’

In contrast to its modern extension, The Holburne Museum’s façade provides an inkling of its grandeur and history

Stride Treglown, Mercedes Baldasarre, architectural assistant “Other European cities are often more open to accepting modern architecture within the old. Contrast is a good tool to enhance the historic strengths of a city.”



ARCHITECTS YOU HAVE BEEN READING… Aaron Evans Architects Kevin Murphy, managing director Gay Street, Bath Aaron Evans Architects Stuart Thompson, chartered architect Gay Street, Bath Bath Preservation Trust Dr Amy Frost, senior curator Royal Crescent, Bath Batterham Smith Architects Ben Smith, director Tollbridge Studios, Bath


CMG Architects Jason Daye, architect The Vineyards, Bath DKA Elspeth Faulkner, architect Sydney Building, Bath Hetreed Ross Architects Ann Ross, architect director Toll Bridge Road, Bath

The striking designs of Bath’s historic train stations – Bath Spa and Green Park – are overlooked by many

Moon Bath Paul Halford, design director Claverton Street, Bath www.moonarchitectandbuilder.

Hetreed Ross Architects, Ann Ross, architect director “The things that catch my eye through the city are the faint traces of past use. Historic painted signage I’m a massive fan of; I feel like I’m honoured to view them before they slip away into the mists of time.”

Nash Partnership Daniel Lugsden, partner Sydney Buildings, Bath

Batterham Smith Architects, Ben Smith, director “Buro Happold’s timber-finned entrance drum down on the Lower Bristol Road is pretty otherworldly. Also, Bath has all the ingredients to produce a showcase city for contemporary design in a historic setting. Unfortunately, at present, there are only a handful of good examples – the extension to The Holburne Museum being an obvious one.”

Nash Partnership Chris Hall, architect Sydney Buildings, Bath

CMG Architects, Jason Daye, architect “Bath’s churches, such as St Mary’s (for which we were the architects of the post-fire rebuild), Christ Church, St Swithin’s, and Nexus Church, contain some remarkable interiors.” Aaron Evans Architects, Stuart Thompson, chartered architect “As a team, we admire: the historic stations of Bath, Bath Spa and Green Park; Ralph Allen’s Town House; Prior Park Gardens’ Palladian Bridge; and Somerset Place. Having worked on the latter, a Grade I-listed crescent, for the last few years, we’ve come to appreciate its fine location, outstanding views and generously proportioned accommodation. Designed by John Eveleigh, works started in 1790 but were never completed, stopping at No.5. Last year, as part of the crescent conversion and extension, we added a new six-storey town house to create No. 4.” n


Nick Shipp Architects Nick Shipp, director Lansdown Road, Bath SRA Architects Emma McDermott, architect Charlotte Street, Bath Stride Treglown Mercedes Baldasarre, architectural assistant Oldfield Road, Bath

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A Celebration of Flowers will be at Victoria Art Gallery until 2 September. For more:


Colour obsessive and fabric designer Kaffe Fassett returns to Bath, after 10 years, with a bold new show Not one for subtlety, Kaffe Fassett has transformed the Victoria Art Gallery with 40 vibrant coloured quilts and needlepoints (such as Tawny Hatboxes, pictured above). Demonstrating his creative flair and love of all things floral, you can expect a bespoke colour scheme throughout A Celebration of Flowers. The show features a menagerie of pieces, including mosaiced island gardens, benches, totems, mirror frames, shoes, flower encrusted candlesticks, and a chandelier by one of Kaffe’s long-term collaborators, Candace Bahouth, who is based in Somerset. Many of the works are on a large scale, extending the bright and natural themes into three dimensions. This promises to be a dazzling display – the last time the pair showed in Bath in 2008, the Gallery welcomed a record-breaking 31,000 visitors. Hopefully, this year’s summer show will attract even more admirers, all immersed in Kaffe’s dreamy, fantastical world of colour and patterns.


26 May – 24 June

WHAT�S ON 26 May – 24 June

Katherine Kingsley plays the role of Dusty Springfield in new musical premiering at The Theatre Royal


LIGHT AND COLOUR A landscape show combining painted works from Kate Cochrane and Jason Nosworthy. Kate’s colourful paintings lead the viewer into the rich textures and scenes of Tasmania, while Jason focuses on landscape elements of colourful abstraction. 10am – 5pm daily; East Lambrook Manor Gardens, Somerset;

Until 31 May

MAY EXHIBITION An exhibition of paintings and prints that reflect Nick’s interest in a variety of subjects, including portraits, stilllife and landscape. Two major new paintings ‘Colonnade 1’ and ‘Colonnade


11’ have been over a year in the making. Nick Cudworth Gallery;

Indian Inks and acrylics with gold, copper and silver leaf. Emma Rose Art Works;

Until 4 June

Until 9 June

SEA FEVER A vibrant and colourful group exhibition bringing together the work of five artists and their different responses to the subject of the sea. Inspiration has been taken from the poem Sea Fever by John Masefield. David Simon Contemporary;

Until 4 June

MAY BLOOMS Original contemporary paintings, limited-edition giclée prints and cards on show. With an emphasis on blooms, paintings zing with springlife, Emma’s unique work is a mix of

LIFE IN COLOUR A colour-popping show that brings together works from three renowned abstract artists Sir Terry Frost, Sandra Blow and Bruce McLean. As the name suggests, expect a collection of the painters’ most vibrant and eye-catching works. Rostra Gallery;

Until 14 June

LAND + SEA Art at the Heart have teamed up with Action on Hearing Loss in Bath to display an exhibition of ceramics, created in workshops by adults who are deaf with additional needs.

The works include shells, fossils, the natural and built environment, plant life and animals. Central Gallery, Royal United Hospitals;

Until 16 June

COLLECTED SHADOWS A Hayward Gallery Touring exhibition from Southbank Centre, showing 200 photographs drawn from the extensive collection of The Archive of Modern Conflict. It spans the history of the photographic medium from the mid-1850s to present day, displaying images which juxtapose time periods and geographies. The Edge, University of Bath;

Until 2 September

A CELEBRATION OF FLOWERS Fabric designer Kaffe Fassett returns

WHAT’S ON 26 May – 24 June

to Bath with a vibrant exhibition inspired by his love of flowers. With a bespoke and dazzling colour scheme, his installation will transform the gallery using 40 vibrant coloured quilts and needlepoints. You can expect plenty of other large-scale works on show, which extend the floral theme into three dimensions. For more, see previous page. Victoria Art Gallery;

Until 28 October


Walter Lindner’s abstract pieces at David Simon Contemporary. RIGHT, Kaffe Fassett exhibits his love of flowers with art installations at the Victoria Art Gallery

SIDE BY SIDE: AMERICA AND WORLD WAR I 2018 marks the 100th anniversary of America’s first major military engagement in the Great War 1914 – 1918, with this exhibition uncovering the relationship between the US and Europe, as well as reflecting on those who went into battle, and those who stayed at home. Various prices; The American Museum;

unusual, graphic and embellished pieces using oils and inks. This exhibition includes the very best of his original monotype artworks. David Simon Contemporary; www.

2 – 3 June

MODERN ARTBUYER OPENHOUSE POP-UP GALLERY Online art gallery and consultancy Modern ArtBuyer is hosting its bi-annual open-door event. View the works available for sale in a home setting, and find inspiration for displaying pieces both large or small, from paper creations to digital designs. Drop in and peruse your favourites – featuring an array of local and international artists – with a coffee or glass of prosecco. 10am – 5.30pm; Sylvan Lodge, Limpley Stoke;

Until 28 October


Until 12 November

THE WHALE An off-Broadway smash and a fiercely funny story about a father’s chance of redemption. It centres around Charlie, a reclusive man marooned on a couch, weighing in at a fairly whopping 600 pounds. He’s a logistical nightmare, then, but can any of his visitors help him? Various times and prices; The Ustinov;

THE BECKFORD WOMEN Throughout his long life, William Beckford was surrounded by a collection of fascinating women. This exhibition explores the lives, loves and loss of the women who influenced – and were influenced by – Beckford. Various times and prices; Beckford’s Tower; A QUEST FOR WELLNESS Beijing-based artist Zhang Yanzi takes a look at healing and wellbeing from the Chinese tradition, with large-scale installations, paintings and more. It should appeal to those with a curiosity about the human body, the human condition, medicine and healing. The Museum of East Asian Art;

Until 1 January 2019

THE WONDER WOMEN OF SPACE A free exhibition celebrating the wonder women who are changing the way we see the world and beyond. The museum talks to leading female astrophysicists, astronomers and engineers to find out what inspires them. Herschel Museum of Astronomy;

1 – 30 June

WALTER LINDNER A retrospective showing of 35 paintings and monotype prints of the enigmatic, late Berlin artist. Over four decades, Lindner created

Until 2 June

Until 2 June

THOROUGHLY MODERN MILLIE A hilarious musical that’s based on the award-winning film of the same name. Straight off Broadway, this sparkling show is bursting with dance routines and catchy songs. Hayley Tamaddon is the star of the show, known for her diverse roles in Emmerdale, Chicago and more. Various times and prices; Main House;

Until 7 July

DUSTY A new musical, premiering in Bath, charting the life of one of Britain’s most successful pop singers. The script is from BAFTA-nominated writer Jonathan Harvey, and West End star Katherine Kingsley plays the lead role. Expect a celebration of the vivacious woman behind the music. Various times and prices, Main House;

26 May



WHAT’S ON A spoken-word meta-drama and theatrical play from duo High and Dry, who bring together their experiences of mental health, recovery, and art. Expect stories that are based on real lives and an exploration of mental wellbeing. 7.30pm; £8; The Mission Theatre;

4 – 9 June

GREAT EXPECTATIONS Peopled by some of Dickens most colourful and memorable characters, this stunning new version promises a powerful and theatrical telling of Dickens’ universally loved masterpiece. Actress Nichola McAuliffe leads the cast as the iconic Miss Havisham in this stage adaptation.Various times and prices. Main House;

12 – 16 June

IOLANTHE Universally regarded as Sullivan’s most beautiful score, this is a topsyturvy love story between the most unlikely of companions – fairies and members of the House of Lords. Sasha Regan’s inventiveness combines with Gilbert and Sullivan’s barminess.Various times and prices. Main House;


Until 26 MAY

THE RAT PACK Get sent back in time to the glamorous, golden era of 1950s Las Vegas, when Frank Sinatra, Sammy Davis Junior and Dean Martin joined forces to become the hottest ticket in town. Sing along, and be transported to a reimagining of a famous night at the Sands Hotel. Various times and prices. Theatre Royal Bath;

6 June

JACK CARTY Australian singer-songwriter Jack Carty and Maz O’Connor visit as part of their joint headline tour of the UK. The independent acoustic duo will be performing new tracks from their highly anticipated new collaborative album Hospital Hill. 7pm; £12; Chapel Arts Bath;

8 June

JILL JACKSON A launch tour for the independent Glaswegian singer-songwriter, who will be performing songs from her new album Are We There Yet? Celtic,


country and Americana sounds are the influence. 8pm; £12; Chapel Arts Bath;

21 June

BACKBEAT SOUNDSYSTEM This eight-piece funk reggae outfit are a band laden with groove, their up-tempo song craft drawing from numerous musical influences. They formed in the Cornish idyll of St Austell, and have been smashing up stages across the UK since. This is a standing show, and you can expect plenty of onstage energy. 7.30pm; £12; Komedia;

24 June

STEVE KILBEY AND AMANDA KRAMER Lead singer and principal songwriter of Australian band The Church (who have sold nearly two million records worldwide) teams up with keyboardist Amanda Kramer. The two have a love of Dylan, Lou Reed, David Bowie and Burt Bacharach, and musical performances will match these mutual tastes. 7.30pm; £16; Komedia;


CREATE: ART Hatch creative ideas and spend some quality time together, in a supportive and friendly environment. You’ll leave with some fun creations and top tips for making art at home, too. For five – 11-year-olds. 10.30am; £5/£3. Ensemble Room, The Edge, University of Bath;

26 May

CREATE: TALES FOR TOTS Julia Donaldson’s much loved-tale The Gruffalo comes to life through interactive storytelling. This interactive workshop will introduce young children to the wonders of stories, fire your child’s imagination, spark a love of reading and encourage their creativity. For two – four-year-olds. Various times; £7.50; Ensemble Room, The Edge, University of Bath;

29 May

GET KNITTED Part of the May half-term activities on offer at Bath’s local museums. Find out about 'messy knitting,' and using finger knitting to make a cuff or neckpiece. Various times; free for Bath and North East Somerset residents with a Discovery Card. Fashion Museum;

ABOVE, Nichola McAuliffe is Miss Havisham in Great Expectations. RIGHT, an original performance of Gilbert and Sullivan's Iolathe at The Theatre Royal. BELOW, Backbeat Soundsystem bring their wacky energy and sounds to the Komedia stage

WHAT’S ON 30 May

WILD WOODLAND DAYS Identify insects and plants, build dens, cook over an open fire, take part in games and activities and create wild artwork with your children outdoors. Suitable for 5–11 year olds. Morning and afternoon sessions available; £10; Dyrham Park;

3 June

FAMILY CYCLING DAY A fun way to get the kids outside and active on the last day of half term. Bike-based activities include short races and prizes, balance bikes for toddlers, and ice creams a-plenty to keep you fuelled. Experience the exhilaration of riding on a smooth, traffic-free two-mile course. For more, see page 12. 11am; £10 for a family ticket; Castle Combe Race Circuit;

10 June

LEAF OPEN FARM DAY Local farmers will be opening their gates for this Sunday showcase, which is farming’s national open day, and a great opportunity to see what happens beyond the farm gate. Enjoy tractor rides, meet the animals, or follow a nature trail with the family. Various local farms.

17 June

FATHER’S DAY TEA Take afternoon Tea in an 18th-century Palladian mansion set amidst 500 glorious acres of parkland. The perfect treat for fathers on their special day, choose from a full afternoon tea with either whiskey or local ale, served in The Library, Drawing Room or, if the weather agrees, on the Terrace. Various times and prices. Lucknam Park;

OTHER Until 10 June

BATH FRINGE FESTIVAL An eclectic festival of all the arts – with few rules as to what should be in or out. Spanning over 25 venues, the fringe includes theatre and cabaret, circus and dance, film, live music, spoken word, kids’ events and plenty of free family happenings. Various times and prices;

26 – 27 May

BATH FESTIVAL FINALE WEEKEND A programme of events to mark the 70th anniversary celebration of the


Bath Festival. Paloma Faith headlines on Saturday night, fresh from her acclaimed number one album The Architect. Other attractions include a poet’s corner, artisan food, and live entertainment across four stages – bringing an open-air party to the city. Various times and prices; The Rec;

31 May

PROFESSOR SUE BLACK Neither sad nor macabre, Sue will be talking about her new book All That Remains, an intimate portrait of her life with death. She'll be sharing the lessons learned during her career as a forensic anthropologist, in a wise, reassuring and fascinating way. 7.30pm; £7 – £17; Christ Church,

10 June

LANSDOWN OPEN GARDENS Luxuriate in the gardens of Sion Hill, a landscaped garden in Somerset Lane and two classic gardens in Richmond Road. Tea, cakes, plants and vegetables will be available throughout the afternoon, with proceeds going to the upkeep of the Millennium Green. 2pm; £5. St. Stephen's Millennium Green;

10 – 17 June

BOULES WEEK A whole week of fund-raising fun, held every day in the heart of Bath. Expect parties, a street food market, drinks, networking films, talks and of course, Boules – all in the aid of raising money for local causes. Queen Square;

14 – 15 june

HOLISTIC HEALING EXCELLENCE OPEN DAYS Find out more about your hearing and the latest hearing technologies from an experienced team, completely free of charge. Those wishing to attend must book a slot. 9am –5pm; Spaces, Northgate House;

14 – 17 June

FESTIVAL OF IRONWORK A brand-new festival, bringing respected master blacksmiths from across Europe to forge a musicalthemed balustrade for the Parade Gardens’ bandstand and raise awareness of heritage skills. Expect blacksmithing demonstrations, havea-go forging and storytelling. 10am – 6pm; £1.50 (free to Discovery Card holders); Parade Gardens; n

ABOVE, pro athletes and families take part in cycling activities at Castle Combe Circuit LEFT, learn to forge metal like a master at Bath's Festival of Ironwork. BELOW, rural experiences to be had at local farms for LEAF’s open day initiative

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We don’t like the idea of getting up at 5.50am each morning. We don’t like the idea of ice baths, or snapped knee ligaments. And we really don’t like the idea of holding down two jobs – trainee solicitor and international netball player – when we can barely do one. Guess we’re not Eboni Beckford-Chambers… Words by Matt Bielby Portraits by Jeni Meade


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he’s a chatty, cheery presence, Eboni BeckfordChambers. Strikingly tall – six foot one in stocking feet, more in heels – and seemingly always smiling, she’s a fearsome presence on the netball court, but in civilian life appears to bring out the best in people. “Oi, netball,” shouts a chipper white van man as she poses gamely for us in a Bath backstreet, glowing in her floral Reiss dress (“an oldie but a goodie,” she tells us later), and she grins right back. Though brought up in Surrey, Eboni’s made the West Country her home in recent years, as she’s risen to fame in the netball world. She’s played for England in three Commonwealth Games now – winning bronze in Dehli 2010 and gold at Gold Coast 2018 – and is currently captain of Team Bath, mainstay of the Vitality Netball Superleague. But she’s also a trainee solicitor at Mogers Drewett – their Queen Square offices just a couple of minutes away from our increasingly busy backstreet – and has always, she reckons, had an academic focus as well as a sporting one. “My mum’s a head teacher,” she says, “so I had no choice. If I was going to play sport, I had to concentrate on my studies too.” You get the impression she’s one of those lasses who wasn’t going to do anything else, though, throwing herself into everything and anything. She was scouted for England early, and had London universities in her sights until the director of netball suggested the South West, a one-two combo of Bristol for the city life and law course, and Bath for the training facilities, proving irresistible. “So, every day I was at Bristol Uni I’d come to Bath to train,” she says. “I’ve been juggling my life ever since.”

it, as they have to handle a lot of pressure. As a defender you fly under the radar a little – but you do get a thrill when you make a vital interception. We’d see you as a netball natural. More so than a gymnast, anyway. Because I’m tall, you mean? Actually,


You were a sporty kid at school, I guess? Yes, a keen

gymnast, plus I played netball, tennis, lacrosse. Gymnastics was my favourite, and netball a second love. But all my friends played, I was quite tall even when I was younger, and we achieved success early on. We were Surrey Under 12 county champions, so netball started to take over. Were you always a defender? No, I was a centre to start

with, then – for England Under 17s – they tried to turn me into a goal shooter for a year. I think I shot seven out of seven, then two out of nine, and I’ve been a defender ever since.

Are you sad about that? Some say the shooters are the

princesses of the game, and get all the glory – but they deserve

“the beauty of the game is that many different body types can play”

the beauty of the game is that many different body types can play – not everyone is tall, like they are in basketball. The different positions require different skill sets, so you’ll see a range of statures, sizes, and types of athleticism.

You mention basketball, and obviously it’s out there and hugely popular – if not that much played in the UK…

But it’s a totally different game. Yes, netball was spun out of early versions of basketball over 100 years ago, but they’ve developed down their own paths. There are seven players in netball, not five. There’s no backboard, and your movement is limited. Both have nets, and balls that you hold, but that’s it. And the thing about netball, I guess, is that it’s almost exclusively a women’s game… Which is its big selling



point. Over 20 million women worldwide play netball, and it’s a massive part of the UK school national curriculum, meaning it’s long been a space that women can excel in. I’ve been fortunate enough to travel to places like Malawi, where I’ve seen how the sport can be used to empower women, and grow their independence within their own communities. Because netball isn’t necessarily controlled by male governing bodies, it’s been something that women have been able to own. You were out in Australia for a few years, of course. I

played for four years in their professional league – for West Coast Fever in Perth, then Adelaide Thunderbirds – before coming home, age 27. I completed my undergraduate law degree at Bristol, then did my Masters and continued with my training to become a solicitor. Having a parallel life outside sports is a really serious consideration for athletes, because you’re going to have to retire eventually – and you never know when a career-ending injury might force your hand. I play alongside medics, pharmacists, biochemists and teachers – we don’t have very much investment into netball, so we all have second careers – and at Team Bath I’m always impressing on younger athletes that they need a good Plan B too.

Not that you’re ending your netball career yet, right?

Not if my knees hold together! The England captain, Ama Agbeze, is 35, so I could still be playing in five years time. My next aim is to reach my century for England, and I want to be selected for the 2019 World Cup in Liverpool.

Ever had anything approaching a career-threatening injury? The big dangers in netball are to your ankles and your

knees, and I needed ACL reconstruction in 2005, where you replace the anterior cruciate ligament, which keeps the knee stable when you’re twisting and turning. I snapped mine on court – yes, the pain was terrible, but it hurt more hearing the doctor telling me it would take up to nine months to heal.

different times in my life. I’m now a member of Bath Rotary – yes, I’m the youngest, and yes, I’m proud to be the youngest – and I love contributing to everything that’s going on. I’m at a transitional point in my life right now – I just turned 30 (no, I’m fine about it) and I’m getting married at the end of this year – and Bath feels like the right place to be.

What’s your routine like now? Is it getting easier? You’re

kidding, right? Most mornings I get up at 5.50am, and you’ll find me in the gym from 6.30 until 8. I’m at work from 8.30am till 5.30pm, then it’s back up the hill for more training. It’s a punishing schedule, but the worst bit is definitely the ice bath. We’re shivering in horror. It’s not exactly painful, but you have to psych yourself up each time. You’re in there maybe 15 minutes, and I cheat a little by wearing tiny little socks on the ends of my toes. They’re the bits that really suffer.

How do you spend free moments? I love travelling, I love

shopping – I’m such a girl – and I’m into my yoga. And I like photography, too. I’ve a grown-up camera – I’m a Canon girl – and it’s been one of my best investments. When my aunt sadly passed away, I got to thinking about how few photographs I have of her, so now I’m constantly taking pictures of family and friends. Really, I should be a wedding photographer.


Let’s switch tack. Tell us about becoming a lawyer. I used to watch Ally McBeal, so that inspired me. And I was always a strong debater at school. It just seemed a good fit. How often does Mogers Drewett lose you for weeks on end to netball? Not as often as you’d think. And they’ve

been phenomenal in the way they’ve supported my ambitions. Luckily, I’ve always been able to compartmentalise quite well, so when I’m on the netball court, I think about netball. And when I’m at work, I think about work. I might be a trainee solicitor during the week, but I’m also an athlete and a fiancée and a daughter. For me, life’s about giving 100 per cent to whatever role you’re performing at the time.

How are you finding Bath? Bristol and Bath are quite

different, but I love them both – and, to me, they represent


“the worst bit is definitely the ice bath”

Speaking of which, tell us about the wedding. It’s at Elmore Court in Gloucestershire in October, which we fell in love with right away. The dress is found too – I went to New York at Christmas, visited Kleinfeld, and it’s all sorted. Same with the bridesmaid dresses. We have a WhatsApp group, so I showed everyone my suggestion and they all loved it – not bad when you’ve got eight bridesmaids. Either I’ve got very good taste, or very easy-going friends. Sounds like you’re on top of it all. Always. I knew I only

had so many free days this year, so I just had to get on with it and make some decisions. With my personality, I’ll decide something then don’t usually venture far away from that. n

OF LAND and SEA by Frances Doherty with Linda Franklin

13 June 2018 to 11 July 2018 21 Broad Street, Bath, BA1 5LN

NIC BOTTOMLEY BOOKS Trials and tribulations


his week, I have a trio of books to recommend to you – all of which involve some real courtroom drama. In one, the trial is just one element in a larger-than-life truecrime story that you can barely imagine is real; in the second, the courtroom action is part of the finale to an infamous life-story; and in the third, nearly every day is a day in court.

‘It’s a larger-thanlife true-crime story that you can barely imagine is real’

The Feather Thief by Kirk Wallace Johnson (Cornerstone, £20) is so full of remarkable, almost unbelievable, strands that you have to keep reminding yourself it is a book of truth, not fiction. The story begins at the Natural History Museum in Tring, Hertfordshire, where, back in 2009, a talented young musician named Edwin Rist broke in and stole 299 exotic and very valuable dead birds. Most of the specimens stolen were of crucial scientific importance, having been collected by Alfred Russel Wallace, a contemporary of Darwin’s, during his landmark expeditions to the Malay Archipelago. The motive for this bizarre crime lay in the world of fly-tying for trout fishing, an intricate hobby for which Rist seemed to have as much talent as he had as a flautist. But since it first became a craze in the Victorian era, to tie really great flies you need bright feathers – the more spectacular the better. The obsessive Rist couldn’t afford the highest calibre of feathers popular with the shadier edges of the fly-tying community, so, to get his hands on riflebirds and birds of paradise, he opted to acquire a museum collection by stealth. In this brilliant multifaceted book, Johnson takes us through the crime itself, the subsequent investigation which identified Rist as the perpetrator (though it took a while for the museum to even realise it had been burgled) and on to his prosecution. We get to know the ins and outs of the fly-tying world, hear Rist’s own back-story, and learn about the too-often forgotten legacy of Alfred Russel Wallace. And then, woven in, there’s the author’s part in it all – as he becomes fixated by this odd tale that he first heard about while up to his waist in a New Mexico river, fishing to help recuperate from PTSD after years leading the rebuilding of war-torn Fallujah and trying to obtain sanctuary for the many Iraqis who had aided the American efforts.

The trial in Margo Jefferson’s On Michael Jackson (Granta, £9.99) forms the final chapter in an insightful series of short essays on the deeply troubled life and times of one of pop music’s iconic figures. Originally written in 2006, three years before Jackson’s death, this first UK-published edition is accompanied by a recently added introduction. Jefferson’s writing is sublime – as you’d expect from a Pulitzer prize-winning journalist – and her thoughts on Jackson’s upbringing, family, relationship with his race, and his musicality all combine to give a completely fresh and informed perspective on the man and his demons. The Secret Barrister by (you guessed it) a secretive barrister (Macmillan, £16.99) is a blend of insights into the day-to-day life of a criminal barrister and a commentary on the parlous state of the UK judicial system. The mysterious author (presumably work would soon dry up if his or her identity were revealed) writes a multi award-winning blog which forms the root of this book that really does give us a warts-and-all view of how justice is dispensed. On the positive side, the author does demonstrate just how far we’ve developed since the medieval methods of trial by ordeal; but on the negative, we see quite how far we are from having equal access to justice. The Secret Barrister makes it very clear that justice is very much for sale, in the sense that money will get your case scrutinised by the very best that the legal profession has to offer while legal aid will often get you a barrister who might be talented but will definitely be overworked and without the time to scrape around for the magic answer (or loophole) to win your case. Away from the politics of law, the tales of not-very-ordinary courtroom life – peppered with reworked transcripts – are fascinating, as we learn how a barrister goes about best representing a myriad of different clients and what lies behind some of the very coded jargon used between judges and lawyers during a trial. ■

Nic Bottomley is the general manager of Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights, 14/15 John Street, Bath; 01225 331155;



Special memories


Local jeweller JODY CORY has created a stunning collection inspired by her home town – the Memories of Bath range

fter 33 years in the trade, Jody Cory was nominated for not one but two trade awards last year. These were Bespoke Designer Maker of the Year by the Professional Jeweller magazine and Retail Jeweller of the Year by the National Association of Jewellers (NAJ). She was carefully selected as one of the top five in the country for her level of quality and service. Jody’s shop contains many bespoke one-off

and handmade pieces to create special memories, often using rare gemstones. Engagement rings and wedding rings can be handmade to be as unique and beautiful as their owner. Often commissioning something for that special occasion in life, or remodelling a family heirloom with all its love and memories that mean so much to the owner. The shop is also home to some very special, unique mementos for your treasured memories of Bath. The memories of Bath range include angles climbing the Abbey, a Roman coin collection, UK pendants with a small diamond putting Bath on the map, fob pendants and bracelets and Bath charms. Come and browse the inspired selection of British jewellery, crafted by a collection of renowned local and national designers. Jody is an established, independent designer, Goldsmith, and also a member of the prestigious National Association of Jewellers. Her new store at 15 Northumberland

Telephone 01761 451764 Email Bookbarn International, 1 Hallatrow Business Park, Wells Rd, Hallatrow, Bristol, BS39 6EX

Cleaning Restoration Valuation

place hosts many British designers alongside locally made work. You’ll find many well known designers such as Alex Monroe, Dower and Hall and Kit Heath. The latest addition to the collections is Clogau, the Welsh gold company. Every piece of jewellery contains a small amount of Welsh gold which is becoming rare as the mine runs low. Kate and Queen Elizabeth both had their rings made from Welsh gold. We hope Megan chooses a welsh gold wedding ring too. When visiting the beautiful Georgian City of Bath, Jody Cory Goldsmiths – right in the Abbey Churchyard – is very much worth a visit. ■

9 Abbey Churchyard, Bath BA1 1LY 01225 460072;


20% OFF CURTAINS Subject to terms and conditions

Smarty, Bath 11 River Street Place, Julian Road, Bath, BA1 2RS

Smarty, Bradford on Avon Elms Cross Shopping Centre (next door to Sainsbury’s), BA15 2AZ

01225 444666

01225 862964


For field-to-fork dining – and then some – head to this Grade II-listed country house with its own deer park… By Lisa Evans


et us give you an insight into just how local the ingredients are at The Pig Near Bath. Not only is the back of the ‘25-mile menu’ illustrated with a map of all their nearby suppliers – from the Bath-based Bertinet Bakery, to Cheddar Ales, 13 miles away – but the ‘restaurant with rooms’ is surrounded by a huge estate, on which you’ll find, of course, pigs (some of which are resident pets), plus chickens, quails, fruit cages, a kitchen garden and near to 100 fallow deer, which have the run of 30 acres. The kitchen is overseen by chef James Golding and head chef Kamil Oseka. It’s uncomplicated and simple British garden food, true to the microseasons and influenced by the forest and coast, with the emphasis squarely on fresh, clean flavours. The menu can literally change by the minute, depending on what the forager finds or the kitchen gardener deems to be in perfect condition. As we’re a little early for dinner, we take a seat by the


window in the lounge, and we’re brought chicken- and pork-flavoured popcorn, a plate of olives and pickled veggies and drinks of our choice. Just before we doze off in the plump armchairs next to the fire, we’re led through to the restaurant, which looks like a Victorian greenhouse. Aromatic herbs perch on windowsills in terracotta pots; on tactile, wooden, unclothed tables sit rough linen napkins that are held together with recycled paper menus; and the earthy, natural vibe floods the room. With the sun setting and the backdrop of the rolling Mendip Hills in the distance, we watch the deer frolic (probably with happiness that they aren’t on the menu… tonight) while we sip red wine and munch on ‘piggy bits’ and ‘garden bits’ – black pudding sausage rolls, and Old Winchester puffs with pea hummus – as well as rustic, fluffy bread which we dunk in The Pig’s homemade garlic oil and novel home-smoked salt. The menu is difficult to choose from because everything


is too appealing to overlook. There are exciting dishes that you don’t see every day – such as roasted veal bone marrow with wild garlic and caper butter; devilled quails’ eggs; mangalitsa lardo; and ling fishcakes – but we end up opting for flower-topped, home-smoked organic salmon with Golden Pheasant cider dressing. The fish is smoked by Kamil at The Pig’s own smokehouse, and it’s infused with a blend of honey, white pepper, lemon, sea salt and oak. We also order a plate of chunky, tender asparagus – the first batch of the season, having been growing in The Pig’s kitchen garden for four years – with poached duck egg and buttery, sunshine-yellow truffle hollandaise. Main for me is perpetual spinach and pea risotto; it’s cheesy, decadent and looks so pretty with its verdant, creamy hue set off by delicate, purple petals. And for my comrade, it’s an amber-coloured, glossy-pastry pie filled with succulent chicken and tarragon. We order sides of thrice-cooked chips, which arrive in a flower pot, and crispy, spindly, deeply smoky ‘tobacco onions’ which are well worth the calories. Our stomachs may be full, but there’s still room for pudding, because that goes straight to the heart, right? Thankfully, they have light options (as well as ‘pudding cocktails’, such as the piggy colada and lemon cheesecake), and, from them, I select the gardener’s granita – a refreshing rhubarb-flavoured smashed ice that sparkles on the tongue. It’s a small dessert – served in a shot glass – but it’s quite enough as the sugary, sharp flavours are powerful. My dining partner casts aside the light choices and goes straight in for a baked Alaska – a browned meringue hedgehog, inside which hides rhubarb ice cream and cake. Sadly, the Grade II-listed country house is packed tonight so there’s no space for us to stay overnight (all 29 rooms are taken, and the bustling restaurant makes that apparent), but we’ll be back to experience the in-bedroom roll-top tubs at this truly rural get-away location. Not only will we return for a sleepover, but we’ll try out a massage in the potting shed (complete with charming features such as the rake-turned-curtain rail) because it sounds too quirky not to test. Maybe we’ll time our next visit to coincide with the Smoked & Uncut festival on 30 June: a glam shindig, at which a line-up of classic and contemporary artists meet homemade festi-food plus cocktails and ales. Sign us up. So: locally sourced food, an enchanting setting, and fivestarriness without a hint of pomposity. Go, stay, and come home only if you have to. n

‘crispy, spindly, deeply smoky ‘tobacco onions’ are well worth the calories’

DINING DETAILS The Pig near Bath, Hunstrete, Pensford, Near Bath, BS39 4NS; 01761 490490; Prices Starters £7 – £9; main £12 – £26; desserts £3.50 – £12.50 Vegetarian choice A whole section of the menu is dedicated to veggies Wine The wine list is enormous, and maybe a little tough to navigate, but the staff are happy to pick out something perfect for you Service/atmosphere A touch of luxury combined with a homely charm


Nestled in 36 acres of beautiful West Country parkland, Ston Easton Park is unique; the hotel is adorned with original antique furniture, sumptuous fabrics and glistening chandeliers, yet the warm welcome and homely atmosphere prevails, creating an idyllic home-away-from-home. One of the most luxurious pet-friendly country house Hotels in Somerset with an award-winning fine dining restaurant and kitchen garden. Our Head Chef is passionate about developing menus that use fresh, locally-sourced ingredients; he works closely with local suppliers and the hotel garden team, sourcing almost 60% of the fresh produce used in the menus from the hotel’s Victorian kitchen gardens. As well as offering the perfect destination for a luxury hotel break, the house is open daily to non-residents for morning coffee, lunch and light snacks, traditional afternoon tea and dinner. Located just 12 miles from Bristol and 11.9 miles from Bath.

Ston Easton, Nr Bath, Somerset BA3 4DF To book, call 01761 241631 or email


Complimentary glass of Prosecco to all joining us for Afternoon Tea. QUOTE BA05 (Offer valid 27/05/18 –26/06/18)

RAISING THE Whether you’re looking to enjoy a quick pint (that turns into three), a Sunday lunch or a country getaway, Bath’s foodie pubs will keep you nourished, watered and accommodated in style

IMAGES FROM LEFT TO RIGHT: spirals of onions at The Marlborough Tavern, posh treats at The Pear Tree, elegant dining at Sign of the Angel, a room with a view at The Hare & Hounds



We all love a public house; though, thankfully, the nostalgia of Bath’s rough and ready taverns is becoming something of a distant memory – those where the carpet hadn’t been washed for a few hundred years, and the menu consisted of little more than a soggy sandwich. Foodie pubs in the city and surrounds have been paving the way for us to enjoy a new era of high-end eating, and many even offer rooms for you to rest your head in. If you think these eateries are erasing the character of the ‘real’ pub scene, think again – there’s plenty of atmosphere to be found in our cream of the crop. These pubs are celebrating the history and heritage of their location, and serving up grub that’s as real as any we’ve tasted. From an ancient mill to a wonky coaching inn, expect flagstones, exposed beams, sun terraces and, of course, delicious food and drink that’s seasonal and locally sourced. What’s not to like? Let’s dig in...



TIMBRELL’S YARD Bradford on Avon

Background and location This stylish riverside inn and listed property is in the heart of Bradford on Avon. It opened its doors in 2015 following an extensive renovation, and boasts a thriving restaurant and 17 bedrooms. Enjoy food in the bar, where dogs are also welcome, or, if the sun is shining, eat outside on the flagstone courtyard. Foodie Team Timbrell’s create joyful food you’ll relish eating. Exec chef Tom Blake was formerly head cook at River Cottage, and, naturally, his team celebrate the seasons and are obsessive about ingredients. Current menu picks Hot food, snacks and small plates are available all day. We’re ordering: bream ceviche, citrus and chilli dressing, radicchio and radish salad; spring green and potato dumplings, grilled Wye asparagus, romesco sauce and baked ricotta; and pork belly, wild garlic and apple with spring bubble and squeak and heritage carrots. Produce Buxton Butchers in Winterbourne supplies beef and lamb, which is traceable to individual animals from the pastures of Somerset and Dorset. Eggs come from The Good Egg Company (Trowbridge), and bakes and cakes are made daily, with Shipton Mill flour, on the premises. Atmosphere A relaxed, modern ambiance, thanks to a clever mix of the building’s traditional features but contemporary design. You’ll find plenty of quirky details, like tiles on the stairways, thick braided jute handrails and richly-detailed woven fabrics. Fun fact The origins of this Grade-II listed building aren’t clear. A copy of an early 19th-century painting by Samuel Spode (hanging in the restaurant) shows the yard as it was then. The Bradford on Avon museum owns the original picture. Coming up… On 27 May, Timbrell’s will be hosting a free Rum ’n’ Reggae event. Kicking off at 4pm, there’ll be the finest rum, courtesy of Westerhall Rums, beers from Camden Town Brewery, street food and Reggae tunes.

Lovingly refurbished Timbrell’s is open all day, every day, to eat, drink,play and stay


Background and location Tucked away in the village of Whitley near Melksham, and 25 minutes from Bath, the Pear Tree Inn is a beautiful 17th-century farmhouse. It’s been


Warm wood and plants-a-plenty make for a wholesome time at The Pear

Dinner Bed & Breakfast deal from ÂŁ145 per night for 2 people Contact us for more information Top Lane, Whitley, Wiltshire SN12 8QX T f @peartreewhitley 01225 704966

Tuck into Sign of the Angel’s set lunches in (low-lit) leisure

running for two and a half years in its current guise. Food is served all day, and, if you want to extend your stay overnight (who wouldn’t), there are eight individually decorated en-suite rooms – all with suitably fruity names. Foodie Team Head chef Adrian Jenkins is the man in charge of the pantry team. He brings over 25 years of experience, passion and humour to the Pear’s kitchen table. His wife, Jackie Cosens, heads up the welcoming front-ofhouse team. Current menu offerings Hake fillet with wild garlic and bronzed fennel; chargrilled free-range chicken, pear dipping sauce, shaved squash, parsley chimichurri and toasted hazelnuts; lemon and thyme chargrilled pork chop, nettle and wild garlic bubble and squeak, roast vegetables, mustard sauce; chocolate and rocksalted caramel tart, something lemony, sticky toffee pudding. Some choices are even available to takeaway. Produce Free-range eggs come from happy chickens in Norton St. Philip, dry goods are from Ashton Farms, veggies come from Bromham (and The Pear’s raised beds), and free-range meat hails from nearby market town Devizes. “We change our menu all the time, depending on not just the seasons but what our farmers and local growers can supply to us,” says Jackie. Atmosphere Food is pear’d with a relaxed and friendly environment. It’s everything you could wish for from a farmhouse-style kitchen with a bar and rustic rooms. Fun fact The bedrooms are named after varieties of pears, and split between the inn and a converted barn. For exposed beams, mullion windows and rural views, stay at the inn. Choose the converted barn if striking statement pear motif wall coverings and Fired Earth tiled bathrooms are more your thing. Little surprises… A wine bottle path gently meanders from the dining room to the rear of the garden, to a bespoke greenhouse with reclaimed sash and stained glass windows.


The Wheelwrights Arms is a rustic abode. Step back in time, wine and dine... but avoid the ghost


Background and location This wonky but wonderful Inn is located in Lacock – the most quintessential English National Trust village imaginable – just a short drive from Bath. Sign of the Angel has been with its current owners, Tom Nicholas and Jon Furby, since 2014, but has been an Inn since about 1480. Its purpose remains the same after all this time – to provide good grub, along with cosy, comfortable rooms for those staying overnight. Foodie Team Business partner Jon Furby – who has over 30 years’ experience in the industry – oversees the kitchen, along with three talented chefs – Luke, Ashley and George.

GASTRO PUBS Current menu offerings À la carte menus

complement the seasons, while the set lunches change daily. Sample dinner dishes include, to start: lime and balsamic cured salmon, asparagus, chive crème fraiche; for main: guinea fowl, pea bubble squeak cake, beetroot, raisin, orange and mustard dressing; and, for dessert: an elderflower sponge with apples and ice cream. Produce Farmers and growers from the best of the West Country. Extra produce is set to come from the cottage garden, too. Atmosphere There’s a focus on the idea of casual dining, so that eaters can enjoy quality dishes and wines, but feel totally cosy in the dining rooms. The décor and cheery front-ofhouse team complement this vibe. Fun fact The name, which was inherited by the current owners, derives from an old coin used in the Inn many moons ago. Coming up… An evening tasting menu, with drinks pairings to match. As the weather hots up, enjoy afternoon tea in the cottage garden, under the canopy of an apple tree.


Background and location Unsurprisingly, the rustic dwelling was used as the home of a wheelwright from 1750, but then converted into a pub in 1850 when the local school wanted the original village pub building. Skip to 2018, and it’s a four-star country inn with seven luxury bedrooms and a glorious garden. You’ll find it nestled in the serene village of Monkton Combe, surrounded by hills and valleys and perched just on the edge of Bath. Foodie Team Chefs Darren, Lorraine, Wayne and Tom are always ready to reinvent the wheel in the pub’s kitchen. Current menu offerings Expect a new style of nosh on the menu soon, as well as brekkie offerings every day from 8am – eggs Benedict, salmon bagels, and lemon and blueberry pancakes, to name a few... Produce Almost all of the kitchen ingredients are sourced from nearby suppliers, except for fishy friends – which come from Brixham waters. Everything edible is made inside the kitchen – including four types of bread. Atmosphere Dining is comfortable and friendly. You can choose to eat and drink by the fire, or enjoy your fare out in the garden. Unusual fact The pub will happily prepare anything (within reason) for its customers, and has been known to cook fish for the people who catch them in the stream in the valley below. Coming up… Jazz evenings in the garden will be creating a commotion during the balmier summer months. n

FOUR PUBS, FOUR CHARACTERS We meet Joe Cussens, Managing Director of The Bath Pub Company How long have you been established… We opened our first pub, The Marlborough Tavern, in 2006, The Chequers in 2010 and The Hare & Hounds in 2012, at which point we became The Bath Pub Company Ltd. What does a good pub mean to you? Delivering the same three key elements: great food, great service and beautifullooking insides. A pub (gastro or otherwise) also needs to have a ‘feel’ to it that resonates with customers. It’s hard to define, but you know it when you see it. It comes mainly from the staff, who give each pub its unique character, personality and atmosphere. What’s cooking? Our menus feature what’s in season at the time, and we work closely with suppliers to give our customers both quality and value. All our kitchens create their own tailored menu using fresh produce.

You’ve now got four pubs in the company. Tell us more…

THE MARLBOROUGH TAVERN Talented new head chef Jack Scarterfield is delivering a menu of honest pub food, big on flavour. A current favourite is devilled lamb kidneys, sourdough toast, broad beans and fresh mint. The Tavern has a lively mix of customers – tourists, locals, young and old.

THE CHEQUERS This is closest to the restaurant end of the spectrum; the food is more ambitious and crafted. Head chef Alex Betts heads up a team of chefs, who deliver both an à la carte selection and traditional pub dishes. The tasting menu of seven courses is a real treat.

THE HARE & HOUNDS This pub is busy from morning to night, with a vibrant mix of clientele (including dogs). With great food and friendly service, the pub also has a huge garden, and arguably Bath’s best views over the Charlcombe Valley.

THE LOCKSBROOK INN Our latest addition enjoys a wonderful spot canal-side in Lower Weston. Expect modern pub classics, rustic pizzas and, at weekends, a roaring brunch trade. The handmade Locksbrook burger is our biggest seller.


The Catherine Wheel, Marshfield. A 17th century country pub with real ales, great food and accommodation. The southern gateway to the Cotswold hills, designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Marshfield, Bath SN14 8LR | 01225 892220 |


All cakes, scones and treats are freshly made on the premises. We are environmentally friendly using biodegradable packaging. We strive to support British businesses and are supplied by Tregothnan Teas, Dusty Ape coffee, Ivy House Farm Dairy, Bradley’s Juice, New MacDonalds Farm and Marshfield Ice Cream. Overlooking the famous Avoncliff Aqueduct and on Route 4 of the National Cycle Network. Situated just a 25 minute stroll along the stunning Kennet and Avon Canal from Bradford on Avon

O PE N IN G T IM E S : F R I DAY S 1 0 : 0 0 - 17: 00. SATUR D AY, SUND AY & BANK H O LI D AYS 09:0 0 - 1 8 :0 0 . Av onc l i ff, Br a d f o rd o n Av o n , B A 1 5 2 H D • 07725853361 • a v oncliff tea @ hotma il. com • www.avonc lifft ea.c om

FOOD & DRINK Bath Ales’ senior brewer, Darren James, is a busy man. He spends his days in the brew house, turning raw ingredients into the distinctive, premium beers we know and gulp. Darren schedules production, manages a team of passionate brewers, and makes sure every pint that gets pumped out is consistently delicious. Let’s find out more...

Ales, I’m responsible for managing all aspects of beer and lager production at our new state-of-theart brewing facility in Warmley – just outside of Bath. How long have you been in the business? I started my career

Talk us through Sulis’ flavour profile... We’ve made a classic,

15 years ago, after discovering a passion for home-brewing at an early age.

Best thing about being based in Bath (or thereabouts)? The

senior brewer, Darren James, to talk about the new Hare brewery, and find out what’s best paired with a spicy curry…

Darren’s nose for consistency means that every pint of Bath Ale pumped out (over 14 million a year) tastes spot on

Sounds like thirsty work. How did you develop your new ‘Sulis’ lager? Lager is a huge

market in this country and the dominant style across the world. Roger (our brewing director) and I have a passion for German and European beers, and wanted to create our own distinct and unique, premium English lager in their honour.

Hi Darren. Tell us about your role... As senior brewer at Bath

TAKE 5 We catch up with Bath Ales’

is cooled, and yeast is added, to ferment the sugars into alcohol. When the right strength is reached, the liquid is cooled again. Finally, the yeast drops out naturally and is ready to be packaged into casks for draught beer, or filtered to go into bottles, kegs and cans.

new brewery is based between Bath and Bristol, so we benefit from the fantastic culture and architecture of both, along with two very lively, vibrant beer scenes. Talk us through what goes into a pint… We use only the finest-

quality ingredients when making our drinks – Maris Otter malted barley, hops, water and yeast.

Where do these come from?

Our malted barley is sourced from East Anglia and Yorkshire. Our hops are from all over the world, including Kent, Herefordshire, America, New Zealand, Germany and Slovenia. Our yeast is a unique culture to Bath Ales, and is grown in-house and recycled from brew to brew. This means that we keep the distinctive taste of our beers as consistent as possible. Can you explain the brewing process in a bit more detail?

Malt gets ‘mashed in’ with hot water to create a porridge-like mixture. During this process, enzymes are released, which convert the starches into sugars. This sweet liquid, called ‘wort’, is run off into a kettle and then boiled. Hops are added during and after the boil to impart bitterness and fruity aromas. Then, the ‘wort’

bready and moreish lager, and then hopped it with exciting new varieties to give it a unique, fresh lemon aroma. It is a balanced, easy-drinking golden beer, with a subtle lemon, fruity, freshness – perfect for sipping in the sunshine.

What’s your most popular ale?

Our bestselling beer is the first beer we ever brewed – our premium amber ale, Gem. We wanted to make an ale that feels as familiar as walking into your favourite country pub. We therefore used traditional British malts and balanced the soft fruits and bittersweet caramel with a smooth bitterness. We’re excited about Hare Brewery. Tell us more… We’ve

had the rare opportunity to build a brand new four-vessel brew house and packaging facility from the ground up. There’s a new taproom, a brewery tour experience and state-of-the-art equipment, including a lauter tun – meaning we can brew lager for the first time ever.

Other than ale, your tipple of choice? I’m partial to a single malt

whisky at the end of the evening.

And your fave meal to pair with a pint? It’s got to be a good curry

with a pint of Prophecy – Bath Ales’ pale ale. The bold flavours of tropical fruit and zesty citrus cut right through the spices. n



Forget a picnic in the park – choose luxury at Lucknam

FOR YOU, DAD If you’re searching for the perfect Father’s day thank you

this year, how about afternoon tea (with a boozy twist) in an 18th-century palladian mansion? Lucknam Park are serving up a special Father’s day treat on 17 June (between 3 – 5pm), and are offering guests a choice of a full afternoon tea, or a whiskey or local ale version. This can be enjoyed in the venue’s library, drawing room or, if the Great British weather permits, out on the terrace. Tea and cake might not sound like the most exciting way to spend time with your pa, but if you swap the hot brew for a beery brew, you’re sure to be the favourite child for time to come. Lucknam Park’s glorious parkland is a very special setting whatever the occasion, and provides the perfect excuse for a Sunday stroll after the tea treats have gone down. Mark the date in your diaries and you’ll have no excuse for forgetting Dad’s special day. For more:


The idea of Bath water usually conjures up the hot thermals of the city’s heritage site, but now the city is being refreshed by a cooler natural spring water, drawn from organic land on the Mendip Hills. Bath Water was launched by locals Mark and Rachel Allen last May, and, after just a year of trading, is in supply to hotels, bars and restaurants across the region (and much further afield). “Businesses have been fantastic in their support,” says Rachel. “We’ve been working with The Royal Crescent Hotel, the Apex Hotel, No. 15 Great Pulteney and Searcy’s to supply the Pump Rooms, Assembly Rooms and Roman Baths Kitchen, as well as Bath Rugby.” Mark ends, “We are very pleased to be celebrating our year anniversary, and will be having a few (alcoholic) drinks to celebrate. Of course, we’ll be sobering up with Bath Water.”

For more:


The tasty trio on hand for dough-spinning

Still or sparkling?

FIRE UP THE OVENS Pizzeria Franco Manca has (unofficially) been bringing its signature sourdough to Bath for over a month, but it officially launched its presence with a special event on 26 April. Founders Giuseppe Mascoli and Bridget Hugo travelled down to the city with their top dough-spinners, and both were on hand to help locally invited foodie guests with a wine-tasting session and pizza masterclass. After a raft of small plates, a dough demo followed, with guests getting to make their own pizza from scratch and then tuck in to a slice (or six). The pizza outlet may be a chain, but it’s been winning over local foodies with its carefully sourced ingredients and simple approach to dining. They’re keen to work with local suppliers, too, and have just proudly introduced guest beer Drink Moor Beer – which is brewed right beside Temple Mead station – to its Bath pizzeria. Online takeaway ordering is now also available. For more, see page 26. For more:



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FOOD & DRINK I don’t think I know any man who doesn’t love a bold red wine, especially with steak, or a BBQ , so what better way to indulge his red-blooded nature than with that classic red for steak: malbec – now one of the UK’s top favoured reds. Except, I would like you to discover something less known, but equally worthy, as that’s my job! Trapiche Bonarda Estacion 1883, 2015 (£11.95), is a bold, seductive red from Mendoza, just a touch softer in style than malbec, and far less known; it’s one of my favourites, and those who’ve tried it, love it. Crammed with brooding dark fruits and warm spice, but balanced with a charming, velvety softness, this wine has a beautiful lightness of touch, together with its depth of character. Fabulous value, and well worth a try.

DAD’S DRINK Treat your dad to a bottle

Skipping back over the ocean to France, my white wine choice to treat dads with would be a classic chablis, and, as a special treat, step up a notch to Defaix Chablis Premier Cru Les Vaillons, 2016 (£24). From some of the top vineyards in the region, it’s intense, bonedry, with classic orchard fruits and peachy characters; complex, deep, and worth savouring slowly and languorously, with either poached salmon or a chunk of oozy, melting brie or camembert.

of something sublime this Father’s Day… By Angela Mount

Port is also a great gift for dads, so look no further than Quinta do Crasto LBV, 2013 (£15.95), yet another award-winner, and a step above many of the bigger brands. Luscious, intense and irresistible, it combines a voluptuous depth of rich, raisiny fruit, dark chocolate, cinnamon spice and layer upon layer of sweet, beguiling flavours, which linger on and on. It’s topquality port, and one which will only improve with a few years’ careful nurturing.


ather’s Day is just around the corner (17 June – as a gentle reminder). Mother’s Day receives far more attention as an event, with which I fully agree of course, as a mum of three, but dads sometimes get a little left out. It’s easy to buy your mum flowers, chocolates and pretty jewellery, but with fathers, it’s less easy. So my column this month is all about how you can treat your dad, or husband, or grandad, with a few special bottles; plan early so that all that’s left to do are the children’s homemade cards just before the day, and then let him loose on the BBQ. It’s English Wine Week between 26 May – 3 June, so why no help celebrate our very own, rapidly growing wine industry? We’re becoming internationally famous for our sparkling wines, which suit our climate; they’re frequently made with the same grapes and in the same ‘traditional’ method of champagne; soils are similar, latitude is, too, therefore it all works. Most of our top sparklers are from the southern coast: Sussex, Hampshire, Dorset, Cornwall. My first pick is Hattingley Classic Cuvée, 2014 (£29.50), an award-winning fizz from an eco-friendly family business in Hampshire, only established 10 years ago, and rocking the world with its quality. Far better value than many champagnes, it has a glorious golden hue, a delicate stream of tiny bubbles, and bursts with entrancing aromas of freshly baked brioche and baked apples, with a thoroughly delightful dance of rich, biscuity, yet citrusy flavours to beguile the palate.


For spirit lovers, go local again and buy him a bottle of Somerset Royal Cider Brandy 5 Year Old (£30), made from our very own Somerset apples. Mellow, satisfying and smooth, it has sweet, mouthfilling flavours, ripe aromas of baked apples, nutmeg and caramel; rich, fruity and well worth a linger.

‘I don’t think I know any man who doesn’t love a bold red wine, especially with steak’

And finally, because real men really do drink rosé, why not set that barbecue weekend scene by giving him an impressive magnum-sized bottle of Chateau Gassier ‘Le pas du moine’ Cotes de Provence Rosé, 2017 (£29.50). The sheer look seduces – all sleek and smooth curves – and it’s a pretty pinky-peach colour; a statement bottle. A cracking wine: delicate, but full of flavour, with strawberries, pomegranates and a twist of citrus tripping over the palate. Perfect for summer al fresco picnics, especially with chargrilled prawns and seared tuna steaks. n All drinks featured are available at Great Western Wine, Wells Road, Bath. Angela Mount is a Bath-based wine writer, presenter and international judge who had her taste buds insured for £10million during her tenure as one of the country’s leading supermarket wine buyers. She works with wine producers, chefs and distributors. For more, visit


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DINING IN BATH Bath Life’s selection of the best places to eat out in Bath and the surrounding area BRITISH THE BATH PRIORY Weston Road, Bath; 01225 331922; Delicious fine dining overlooking the hotel's award-winning gardens CIRCUS RESTAURANT 34 Brock Street, Bath; 01225 466020; Voted number four in the UK in The Times's “20 secret restaurants that foodies love” CLIFTON SAUSAGE 5 Bladud Buildings, Bath; 01225 433633; Upmarket sausage and mash restaurant and bar, plus a beautiful terrace CORKAGE 132 Walcot St, Bath; 01225 422577 Chapel Row, Bath; 01225 423417 Award-winning small plates restaurant and wine specialist THE DOWER HOUSE, ROYAL CRESCENT HOTEL 16 Royal Crescent, Bath; 01225 823333; AA 3 rosette fine dining at one of Bath’s most iconic locations HENRY'S 4 Saville Row, Bath; 01225 780055; Imaginative modern dining offering a classic menu and also full vegetarian and vegan menus DAN MOON AT THE GAINSBOROUGH RESTAURANT Beau St, Bath; 01225 358888; Creativity meets delicious food with this talented chef MENU GORDON JONES 2 Wellsway, Bath; 01225 480871; Multi award-winning fine dining with a constantly changing surprise tasting menu THE OLIVE TREE RESTAURANT, THE QUEENSBERRY HOTEL Russell St, Bath; 01225 447928; One of Bath’s longest established restaurants, overseen by Chris Cleghorn with 3 AA rosettes 102 MEDIACLASH.CO.UK

WOODS 9-13 Alfred St, Bath; 01225 314812 Legendary Bath dining institution serving French influenced British cuisine

THE CHEQUERS 50 Rivers St, Bath; 01225 360017; Inventive British food served in a welcoming pub atmosphere close to the Royal Crescent


THE GARRICKS HEAD 7-8 St John's Rd, Bath; 01225 318368; City centre pub and dining room next to the Theatre Royal Bath

CAFÉ LUCCA 1-2 Bartlett Street, Bath; 01225 335394; Stylish contemporary café situated at The Loft on Bartlett Street; offering a Mediterranean inspired menu with barista coffee and sumptuous homemade cakes DARCY’S 34 Gay St, Bath; 01225 425308 Independent café/newsagent in Bath. Serving breakfast and lunch, coffee and cake daily GREEN BIRD CAFÉ 11 Margaret's Buildings, Bath; 01225 487846; Independently-run café located between the Circus and Royal Crescent THE KINGSMEAD KITCHEN 1 Kingsmead St, Kingsmead Square, Bath; 01225 329002; Laid-back, modern café-bar open daily from 8am until 6pm for breakfast, brunch, lunch and tea using farm produce

CALIFORNIAN THE FIREHOUSE ROTISSERIE 2 John St, Bath; 01225 482070; Californian and Tex-Mex dishes, prepared over a wood-fired grill in a rustic setting

GASTROPUBS GPT SMOKEHOUSE 44-45 Lower Bristol Rd, Bath; 01225 429509; 'Dude Food' menu cooked with an authentic handmade American hot smoker KING WILLIAM 36 Thomas St, Bath; 01225 428096; Pub with an upstairs dining room serving a modern British menu based on West Country produce

THE HARE AND HOUNDS Lansdown Road, Avon, Bath; 01225 482682; Airy, relaxed spot with modern British gastropub menu, extensive wine list and scenic outdoor area THE LOCKSBROOK INN 103 Locksbrook Rd, Bath; 01225 427119; Canalside gastropub in Bath, open every day for drinks, brunch, coffee, lunch, evening meals and grazing in between THE MARLBOROUGH TAVERN 35 Marlborough Buildings; 01225 423731; Award-winning gastropub using seasonal local produce THE NEW INN 24 Monmouth Place, Bath; 01225 442944; Burgers and bar snacks with cask and craft ale and beers THE RICHMOND ARMS 7 Richmond Place, Bath; 01225 316725; Hearty dishes with menu changing on a daily basis

INDIAN THE EASTERN EYE 8a Quiet St, Bath; 01225 422323; Classic traditional Bengali cuisine in a grand Georgian interior space THE MINT ROOM Longmead Gospel Hall, Lower Bristol Rd, Bath; 01225 446656; Award-winning contemporary Indian fine dining


ITALIAN CAFFÈ CARUSO 3 Trim Bridge, Bath; 01225 426735 Independent restaurant with authentic Italian dishes SOTTO SOTTO 10 North Parade, Bath 01225 330236; Classic Italian menu with a contemporary twist in candlelit vaulted cellars

PIZZA THE OVEN 21 Westgate St, Bath 01225 311181; Neapolitan artisan pizza using local and Italian imported produce

REAL ITALIAN PIZZA CO 16 York St, Bath 01225 330121; Family-owned pizzeria. Wood-fired pizza with fresh authentic ingredients




THE HERD 12a Argyle St, Bath; 01225 316583; Locally sourced meat of the finest provenance alongside a simple, seasonal menu

KOH THAI TAPAS 36 Broad St, Bath 01225 311232; Award-winning small Thai tapas plates and delicious cocktails

HUDSON STEAKHOUSE 14 London St, Bath; 01225 332323; Award-winning steakhouse in a listed building specialising in prime aged steaks and delicious starters with a fusion twist

TAPAS REVOLUTION 20A St Lawrence St, Bath; 01225 312917 Authentic Spanish tapas plus an outside terrace

THAI BY THE WEIR 16 Argyle St, Bath 01225 444834; Restaurant overlooking the weir, serving a classic Thai menu

OUTSIDE OF BATH BRITISH NO. 10 TEA GARDENS Avoncliff, Westwood, Bradford-on-Avon BA15 2HD; 01225 853361 An independent tea garden located next to the picturesque aqueduct at Avoncliff. THE GARDEN 15-17 The Bridge, Chippenham, SN15 1HA 01249 465672; Relaxed dining using British produce

COUNTRY HOUSE HOTELS LUCKNAM PARK Colerne, Wilts, SN14 8AZ 01225 742777; Michelin-starred fine dining at the renowned Park restaurant, and more informal dining at the stylish contemporary brasserie at this five star country house hotel WIDBROOK GRANGE HOTEL Trowbridge Road, Bradford on Avon BA15 1UH; 01225 864750;

Modern farmhouse cuisine, locally sourced and freshly prepared

GASTROPUBS BUNCH OF GRAPES 14 Silver St, Bradford on Avon BA15 1JY; 01225 938088; Bar and restaurant inspired by the village bistros of South West France THE GEORGE AT WOOLLEY 67 Woolley St, Bradford on Avon, BA15 1AQ; 01225 865650; Lovingly refurbished gastropub from awardwinning team HOMEWOOD PARK Abbey Lane, Freshford, Bath BA2 7TB 01225 723731; www.homewoodpark. Luxury hotel with two rosette restaurant and spa THE LONGS ARMS Upper South Wraxall, Wilts, BA15 2SB;

01225 864450; Award-winning modern British food and cask ales in country inn THE PEAR TREE INN Top Lane, Whitely, Wilts, SN12 8QX; 01225 704966; An elegant revamped country inn with an acclaimed restaurant and contemporary rustic-chic bedrooms THE WHEELWRIGHTS ARMS Church Lane, Monkton Combe, BA2 7HB 01225 722287; Pub featuring modern takes on British classics, plus understated, individually decorated guestrooms

FARM SHOPS ALLINGTON FARM SHOP Allington Bar Farm, Allington, Chippenham SN14 6LJ; 01249 658112; Shop and café selling local produce ■




Warm-weather season and garden accessories are a perfect match… It’s almost barbeque season, so add some cheeky charm to your garden with these quirky outdoor monkey lights, which will get conversation flowing. Perfect for illuminating your garden pathways or adding a glow to early summers evenings, get creative with silly monkey freeze-frames, hanging them from walls, standing them next to benches, sitting them in corners, and hiding them in trees. Alternatively, these playful, striking and distinctive critters make a great indoor lighting option and can be combined with lampshades for a different look.

Outdoor monkey lights come in black or white and start from £210. From Graham and Green, 92 Walcot Street, Bath; www.


CHOCOLATE VINYL AND CASSETTE, £22 Whatever your dad’s hobbies and interests, local business Choc on Choc may well have a sweet treat to suit – from cheeseboards and pints, to dumbbells and records, all made from Belgian chocolate From Choc on Choc, based in Rode;

I AM YOUR FATHER To ease any Father’s Day giftbuying panic, we’ve picked a selection of thoughtful prezzies your dad will actually want…

KILCHOMAN LOCH GORM 2018, £69.95 This is a special-release, limited-edition whisky that comes out once a year. Expect a combination of rich sherry notes, cooked fruits and subtle Islay peat. Independent Spirit of Bath, 7 Terrace walk, Bath;


HEADPHONE HOLDER, £8.50 This British-made, leather, Kate Sheridan holder will keep your headphone cables neat and tanglefree. From Found, 17 Argyle Street, Bath;

ROCK & ROLL WHISKY GLASSES, £18 The specially designed rolling bases on these whisky glasses are apparently the perfect shape to bring out the aroma of the tipple. From Rossiters of Bath, 38 – 41 Broad Street, Bath;

THE LOEWE BILD 5 OLED TV, £3,290 OK, it might be out of prince range for a gift, but maybe dad can buy this 55” TV himself, and your present to him can be allowing him to watch the FIFA World Cup on it. From Moss of Bath, 45 St James’ Parade, Bath;

ED’S CHOICE ASPINAL BRIEFCASE, £220 Distinctly masculine, the Harrison briefcase is a versatile and spacious semi-structured leather business case – great for busy dads. Find more pre-loved accessories like this at Grace & Ted, 10 Kingsmead Square, Bath;

CANVAS ROBOT PRINTS, from £87 each Artist Glyn West works from his home studio in Marlborough Street, Bath, creating Pop Artstyle, unusual colourful designs. From Glyn West Design; NO.1 DAD TENNIS BALLS, from £9.99 per pack These handmade tennis balls – available in blue, teal or denim-wash – will make a sport-loving father feel special on the court. From Price of Bath, Quarry Hill Works, Box;

BRITTS OF BATH HAIRSTYLING PRODUCTS, £12 each This own-brand of styling products is made in small batches and aims to provide a strong and resilient hold throughout the day. From Dappa, 24 Broad Street, Bath;

VINTAGE SPORTING GIFTS, From £37.50 If your dad’s passionate about rugby, boxing, football, basketball or tennis, this local, online vintage-sport business is well worth a visit. From Vintage Sports, Lower Swainswick, Bath;


The Lansdown Club, Northfields, Bath, BA1 5TN

Every Day is an Open Day Come and look around Bath’s Premier Racket Sports Club Tel: 01225 425763 E-mail:


Holistic Hearing Excellence Try the latest Bernafon Zerena technology for free in June


nvesting in your hearing is one of the most important decisions you can make. Hearing well connects us to loved ones and friends and makes it easier to stay active and healthy. Did you know that hearing difficulty has been linked to a number of health problems, including dementia and depression? Of all the risk factors associated with these health issues, hearing is one of the easiest to do something about. Hearing aid technology has made some incredible breakthroughs in the last two years. From direct streaming of sound from your iPhone, to internet apps, to seamless reduction of background noise, you have to experience it to believe it. The new Bernafon Zerena is a fantastic example. We want to offer Bath Life readers the opportunity to try out this new technology – completely free of charge. Call us today to book your slot at our open house event on 14 and 15 June.

WHO WE ARE We are a family run hearing centre, serving Bath and the surrounding villages. We are passionate about helping people hear better, because better hearing is better living. Making a difference to the patients and people we care for is the driving force behind what we do. We don’t just say it, we deliver it. We do this through the effective delivery of an excellent standard of care, and empower our patients to achieve the best outcome for their hearing.

Anthony Stone HAD MSHAA, Alison Stone HAD BA Hons (Speech and Hearing)

Anthony and Alison create a formidable partnership, delivering expertise in patient care, hearing loss and hearing aid technology. Anthony is an independent hearing aid audiologist passionate about making a tangible difference in the lives of his patients. He is an expert at problem-solving and tenacious in his solutions-orientated approach. Alison is an audiologist and an authority on hearing aid technology. Together with her expertise and position as an esteemed educator, she brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the services we provide. n

Spaces Northgate House 336, 2nd and 3rd Floor, Barton Court, Upper Borough Walls, Bath BA1 1RG 07421 368051;

From the makers of Crumbs, Bath Life, Bristol Life, Cardiff Life, Exeter Living and Salisbury Life Ad enquiries:; Editorial:; 01225 475800


A positive pet blood bank You’ll find useful advice, tips and support at BATH VET SURGERIES


lood donation in human medicine is commonplace, with a variety of people attending blood donor sessions throughout the country. It’s less well-known that animals can require a blood transfusion from being anaemic (where they have low red blood cells) too, from road traffic accidents and major blood loss during surgery. Hope the cat arrived at Rosemary Lodge Veterinary Hospital after being found in the rain on a driveway by a member of the public. She wasn’t moving and was close to death. On arrival at the centre, a variety of tests were run, including a PCV which checks the level of red blood cells within the blood. Hope’s levels were dangerously low, her gums were pale – another sign of anaemia – and she was covered in fleas. Fleas feed on blood, and because of the sheer number that were present and her small size, it had caused her to suffer blood loss resulting in anaemia. It was decided that Hope needed a blood transfusion to survive. One of the veterinary nurses at Rosemary Lodge brought her own cat Bean in to be a blood donor for Hope, as they were both the same blood type (A). The blood was then



given to Hope over a few hours. Over time, she gradually improved. The next morning her gums were pinker and she was seeking attention and food. She was also treated for fleas to prevent any more blood loss from them feeding. Words cannot describe how happy all the staff at Rosemary Lodge were that this kitten had survived and our veterinary nurse (Laura Coles RVN) who kindly brought her own cat in to be a blood donor, fell in love with this little character and adopted her as soon as she was well enough to go home. Animals have the same blood types as humans – dogs are either DEA 1.1 negative or positive, and cats have three main types; A, B and AB. Blood type A is the most common in cats and most domestic cats will be this blood type. Blood type B is rarer and certain breeds have been found to have a higher incidence of being type B, including British short hairs, Ragdolls, Cornish Rex, Burmese, Birman, Persian, Norwegian Forest cats and Maine Coones. It can be difficult to find blood donors for cats which are type B due to its rarity within the cat population. If you are interested in registering your dog or cat on Bath Vets blood donor list please call us on 01225 832 521 or attend our blood donation open day, Sunday 3rd June 2018, 10am–1pm at Rosemary Lodge Veterinary Hospital. Come and talk to our vets and nurses about your pet giving blood. All pets can be screened for suitability and blood type. Join us for nibbles, drinks and some fab free goodies. ■ Words by Cathy Woodlands BSc(Hons), VNPA, GradDipVN, RVN

OUR CLINICS: • Rosemary Lodge Hospital Wellsway, Bath, BA2 5RL; 01225 832521 • Bath Cat Clinic 4 Beaufort East, London Road, BA1 6QD 01225 312061 • Chapel Veterinary Surgery Forest Road, Melksham, SN12 7AA 01225 702427 • Marshfield Veterinary Surgery 57 High Street, Marshfield, SN14 8LR 01225 891171 • Oldfield Park Veterinary Surgery 4 Third Avenue, Oldfield Park, BA2 3NY 01225 423652 • Peasedown Veterinary Surgery, 46 Bath Road, Peasedown St John, BA2 8DL ; 01761 435673 • Saltford Veterinary Surgery 478B Bath Road, Saltford, BS31 3DJ 01225 872002 • Station Road Veterinary Surgery Lower Weston, BA1 3DY; 01225 428921 • Park Road Vets 11 Park Road, Keynsham, Bristol, BS31 1BX 0117 9339 933

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Quote of the issue


Bath Carnival get overexcited at the Bath Life awards, page 122

The Big Number

£100K The expected demand for Dr. Marten’s boots and bags in Bath, page 120


Forget launching off, award-winning Bath entrepreneur Richard Godfrey is returning home

W The team are over the moon about the office move. Rocket man Richard (FOURTH, LEFT) founded the company in 2007

hen local tech enterprise Rocketmakers celebrated its 10th birthday last autumn, it was already on the verge of outgrowing its current headquarters on Bartlett Street. Keen to find a new and bigger home, the management team considered plenty of options for moving, including the larger techy scene in Bristol. Thankfully for Bath, the company’s loyalty to the wider community won out. They have just signed a lease for a 3,800-ft office space in the newly renovated 20 Manvers Street office building near Bath Spa station. The move from their current Bartlett Street

headquarters marks a return for CEO Richard Godfrey, who worked at the address for eight years, from 1991, when it was the home of local software house Praxis and consultancy giant Deloitte. “We’ve been planning this move for six months,” says Richard. “We really wanted to stay close to our roots in Bath, but attract the best talent from the whole area. Moving so close to the station eases the commute for everyone and helps with our growth plans. This city has been our home for over a decade and we enjoy the thriving creative environment here. We want to continue to actively support it.” Richard left 20 Manvers Street in

1999 for a career at Microsoft, before co-founding Rocketmakers in 2007. “I’ve had a real sense of satisfaction returning,” he says. “It looks and feels like a completely different building now, of course. I left on my own 20 years ago, and I’m proud to be returning with another team of highly talented and creative people.” Rocketmakers is a company set for astronomical things. At this year’s Bath Life Awards, they claimed victory in both the tech and innovation category, and received the platinum award for best overall winner. At the opening party of their new workspace, Rocketmakers is expected to be officially presented with their 2018 Queen’s Award for Enterprise – another recognition of their innovation – which was announced by Her Majesty The Queen on her birthday last month. The team of passionate experts design, develop and deploy technology for start-ups and corporations. This move just proves that there’s always room in the shuttle for more talent. ■ For more:




JOHN RYDER, director of Bath’s coolest new workplace, Spaces

Hi there, John. Tell us more about Spaces. Spaces is part of the

IWG Group and we are leading the flexible workspace revolution. Most people are familiar with our Regus brand, but Spaces is a different operating brand, and was designed to reach another audience. What is audience is that?

Spaces was made for corporate shakers, business nomads, freelancers, energetic entrepreneurs, international workers, mobile movers, project teams, start-ups and well-established companies. How were you involved with the development of the site in Bath?

Honestly… I can’t take too much credit. We have a great property and development team who managed the project in its entirety. BEATA COSGROVE PHOTOGR APHY

What makes offices such as Spaces stand out from others in the area? Originating in

Amsterdam, Spaces was built on the idea that success breeds more success. We want to redefine the way work is done. That’s why we’ve cultivated a community of thinkers, achievers and imagineers. Plug into our energy and watch your world accelerate...

Spaces at Northgate House turns the traditional office model on its head, combining a World Heritage site with a modern work setting. John Ryder is the area director of IWG in the South West, and is responsible for growing the company’s dyanmic workplace ideas, such as Spaces. Busy travelling across the West Country, John found time to talk modern working, escaping emails, and golfing technique...

How long have you been in the workspace business? Around six


they come in. One of my biggest challenges is getting away from my laptop, phone or emails. What was your first job? And how much did you earn? At the age

of 12, I had a job, which paid £20 a weekend, putting leaflets on car windscreens in an industrial estate. I ended up getting fired. What are the best aspects of your job? I really enjoy speaking

with customers and getting to understand the positive impact our work has on them, their business aspirations and even the impact on their families. We have an almost unique privilege to help people take a big step in their professional life, and being able to see their businesses grow and develop as part of our ecosystem gives me real pride. If you could pursue any other career, what would it be?

Professional Tour Golfer.

What do you like best about working in Bath? Bath has a

fantastic business community and I’m delighted by how welcoming the city has been. We have already had so many more workspace enquiries, which is extremely flattering.

What are your business plans for the future? Spaces continues to go

months. I am learning a lot, loving the experience and being part of such a dynamic market. IWG was founded in 1989, and we now have over 3,000 locations worldwide – including the city of Bath. I feel lucky to be working at such an established and leading brand.

from strength to strength, and will be a bigger part of the IWG portfolio. After the success in Bath, I have quite a few potential new sites in the South West, which I am reviewing. At IWG, we are also committed to opening one new location like Spaces every day, somewhere around the world.

What daily challenges do you face? I have a great team, and most

And your non-business plans?

of my day is spent supporting them and addressing their problems as

Working on my golf swing and trying to get away from spreadsheets... ■

Weddings Families Portraiture Events Professional studio Fashion Jewellery Architecture

BeataCosgrovePhotographer beatacosgrovephotography






The latest from Bath Rugby HQ

BUSINESS MATTERS DIARY Courses and classes to help your business flourish

4 JUNE BATH LIFE BUSINESS CLUB The chance to hear Cosmo Fry – the hotelier, bon vivant, entrepreneur and scion of the famed Fry (Turkish Delight) family – share his business life insights. Expect fresh thinking over a fine lunch. Price TBC; 12pm; The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa;

The mighty team in a group hug

It’s always exciting to find out who will make up the next Bath Rugby team, and the updated squad has now been confirmed for the 2018/19 season. Six new players will be joining the club this summer, along with an intake of ready academy players – to be announced soon. The latest star arrival is Jamie Roberts, who joins the team after three seasons with Premiership counterparts Harlequins. “I’m really excited to have signed for Bath Rugby”, says the experienced centre. “It’s a club with a great deal of ambition, which was crucial in making my decision to come here. There is no doubt that Bath can mix it with the best, in both the Premiership and in Europe, over the next few years.” Hot young prospect Joe Cokanasiga makes the move to the West Country on a three-year-deal from London Irish. Also joining the crew is Ruaridh McConnochie, fresh from winning bronze at the Commonwealth Games (and named England Mens 7s RPA Player of

the Year). Last but not least in the line-up are Jackson Willison and Will Chudley, making the transfer from Worcester Warriors and Exeter Chiefs, respectively. Aside from the signings from other high-performing clubs, Bath’s own academy talents Sam Nixon and Will Vaughan are the latest players to commit their future to the club. They’ll be following in the footsteps of teammates Aled Brew, Tom Ellis, Taulupe Faletau, Beno Obano and Elliott Stooke. While Bath Rugby also wanted to pay tribute to those players leaving the club – including long-time servants Matt Banahan and Kane Palma-Newport – the focus is very much ahead. “We’re really looking forward to next season,” says director of rugby, Todd Blackadder. “We showed against Gloucester and London Irish the ability that we have in the squad to break teams down. Having the experience of the likes of Jamie Roberts, Jackson Willison and Will Chudley, along with the pace and power of Joe, will only help us to achieve our ambitions for the 2018/2019 campaign.” For more:

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Michael King


Bath-born Michael King is retiring from law firm Stone King after 43 years of service. Michael used to visit his father as a boy at the Queen Square office, where Stone King has been based since 1832. He’s been a prominent figure in charity law ever since – particularly in his home city of Bath – and has been appointed to prominent positions such as president of Bath Law Society. Michael has also been key to the growth of the firm, with turnover increasing from £85,000 to £17.5 million under his reign, and staff numbers rise from just 20 people in Bath to around 250 in offices around the country. He’ll certainly be spending more time with his family after retiring, but will remain a trustee for voluntary organisations.


St Johns Foundation works hard to support the people of Bath, and chief executive Sue Porto has been its figurehead since 2015. She’ll be leaving this summer to take up a similar post at the Brandon Trust. Sue rebranded the Foundation, transformed the culture of the organisation and expanded its sources of income. Because of this, St Johns has been able to increase the breadth and impact of its work, helping thousands more people living in Bath. “It has been a privilege to lead St Johns for the last three years,” she says. “I am very proud of the team and all the amazing work we have achieved together during this time.” The charity looks set to address the most pressing needs facing our community, although it’ll be on the



FANTASTIC FOUR Our pick of the most exciting, intriguing or important local business stories right now

a more modern experience. The 15,000 sq ft casino, in the centre of Bath’s evening leisure district and opposite the Theatre Royal, will be opening its doors to the public on 25 May. The days of having to register are long gone – just walk in and enjoy the sublime surroundings. For more:


When the opportunity arose for global footwear giant Dr. Martens to open a store in Bath’s Union Street, the company couldn’t resist. “The ecommerce demand in Bath is currently £46,000 (400 pairs), but this could increase to £100,000 following the establishment of a retail store,” says senior account manager, Portia King. Dr. Martens recognised the city’s strong visitor economy, as well as a thriving student population from two universities. The business was even more convinced to set up shop in the city when they found out that the Schuh store in Bath – one of their wholesale customers – is a top seller of the brand in the UK. A special in-store gig from band IDLES was held on 23 May to celebrate the opening, and there are plans afoot to host more meet-ups in the future. As well as the expected array of Dr. Martens seasonal collections, the shop interior features exclusive artwork from Bath illustrator Sophie Bass – demonstrating how keen the big brand are to feature local individuals. For more:


It’s been a long time coming, but you can bet your bottom dollar that the grand new casino opening in central Bath is going to be worth the wait. Set across three floors, Century Casino should complement a fabulous evening out in the city, and gambling definitely isn’t the only option on the cards inside, thanks to the luxurious cocktail lounge that overlooks Saw Close. As well as beautifully designed public gaming tables, the Beau Nash Suite – an exclusive, elegant top floor room with its own balcony – will be available for private hire. Expect each floor of the casino to deliver quintessential card games and roulette, as well as the latest gaming tech and terminals for those after


TOP Creative youth culture (in footwear form) hits the heritage city BOTTOM RIGHT Let the chips fall where they may, RIGHT Installing inspiration to SouthGate’s shops, BELOW Dan Harris, international man of… legal processes

Stone King have become the first law firm in Bath to anticipate a rising pre-Brexit property demand, and can now support their local clients from start to finish when they buy or sell a property in France, with their new French conveyancing service. The conveyance process across the pond is very different to the UK, and buyers usually have to hire a French lawyer and muddle through the French legal terms and procedures themselves. With the new service, Stone King are offering their expertise in navigating foreign law, while managing the project and working closely with an experienced French notaire (that’s a legal specialist, to you and me). Dan Harris, head of Stone King’s cross-border team, says, “We were receiving increasing levels of enquiries about buying and selling in France, particularly ahead of March 2019 to beat Brexit. With the expertise and contacts we have in France, we can help people at every

stage, from the ‘bon de visit’ to the ‘compromis de vente’, through all the searches and surveys, and all the way to the ‘acte de vente’.” Ooh, la la.

For more:


We Brits are known for getting excited about summer too early, but Bath is now officially bright and beautiful, thanks to the installation of a botanical walkway – featuring 44 archways and more than 40,000 wisteria vines – at SouthGate, which transform the busy shopping street into a floral spectacle. The purple and cream canopy follows SouthGate’s iconic umbrella street from the past two years, which was photographed and enjoyed by high street visitors for months. The city’s shoppers and diners can admire this year’s enchanting display – complete with matching floral phone boxes and hanging baskets – from now until September. “We’re confident that our wisteria walkways will be a real spectacle over the coming months for both locals and tourists,” says Guy Henderson, centre manager of SouthGate. “We want to be one of the most instagrammable destinations this summer, so shoppers should definitely have their smartphones to hand.” ■ For more:

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Stuart Matson of Bath Carnival on winning, celebrating and partying So how did it feel to win a Bath Life Award? How did you celebrate? It was an amazing feeling and we celebrated in true carnival style – with feathers, glitter and a lot of bubbly. I then managed to cut my finger open at the after party in Circo, so we left our mark on the evening – blood and glitter – very rock n’ roll.


our project is never the same from one year to the next. You could argue we don’t have the best business model, as the event is free to the public. But, the result is a very inclusive community project – diversity makes us successful. How did you get into doing what you do? My friend Robbie Verrecchia set up Bath Carnival in 2013 with a small group of volunteers; I initially helped out by booking some of the bands and designing posters and flyers. Has it met or exceeded with your initial plans, and your expectations? Six years ago I don’t think anyone would have believed we’d be organising an event on this scale, attracting tens of thousands of people to the streets. Deep down, I knew we

had the right people involved to push the project forward.

What do you think makes Bath Carnival so successful? Over the years, we’ve attracted inspiring, innovative and passionate people, and

Do you think being an active part of the community is important in business? Community projects bring people together – and if local businesses can help make that happen, then that’s got to be a good thing. Last year’s event wouldn’t have been possible without local businesses sponsoring the project and offering in-kind support.


What do you love most about your job? I love being able to support local artists. We offer early-career artists peer-to-peer learning opportunities, and provide a platform for more experienced artists to create on a large scale without the logistical nightmare of arranging their own exhibitions.

Strike a pose…any will do

Have there been some tricky times for the Carnival? Without a doubt, 2016 was our biggest test. We had an overwhelming number of applications for the procession, which meant our costs escalated very quickly. We were forced to scale down the

event, which was a huge shame. It’s important to learn from those difficult periods, however, and last year turned out to be our best to date ever – hence winning this award. What do you aim to achieve in the next couple of years? The plan is to organise more events throughout the year, such as creative workshops. Plans are also underway for a Day of the Dead Carnival for Halloween. Any news to share, or exciting projects in the pipeline? There’s loads going on at Carnival HQ , including a rebrand and a new website in the making. We’ve just finished photographing all of our costumes, which will now be available for groups to hire via the website. What do you love most about being in Bath? Being close to the countryside is really important to me. A lot of my time is spent in front of a computer screen, so I try to get out on a country walk or stroll by the river. What do you do all do when you’re not working or strolling? A lot of the core team are involved in bands and dance groups, so there’s a lot of rehearsals, gigs and festivals. Being a volunteer team, we don’t get many opportunities to all meet up together, so we try to have as many socials as possible – any excuse for a party. What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given? Embrace change. A project like a carnival is constantly evolving, and now we’re an established event in the city, it would be easy to play it safe and stop taking the risks which make what we do so exciting. At its heart, this is a creative

project, and we want our artists to continue pushing boundaries, even if at times that can be really daunting. ■ For more:







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Local legal expert HELEN STARKIE explains…


y colleagues and I have recently dealt with two or three cases where clients have come to us to make Wills having already ‘ring fenced’ their home with an Asset Protection Trust bought for around £4,000 – £5,000 from respectable sounding companies with substantial sounding names. These companies (and there are now quite a few of them) invest in professional looking adverts in the media and produce glossy brochures, but many are not the experts they give the impression of being. They are not regulated by any professional authority. If they run into difficulty, they can simply shut up shop and walk away, then setting up afresh under a new identity and name. Sadly, we had to tell these clients that they had wasted their money. Transferring your home into a Lifetime Asset Protection Trust does not remove its value from your estate for Inheritance Tax purposes, as, by continuing to live in it, you will have what is called a ‘reservation of benefit.’ This means that your estate will be taxed as if the transfer into the Trust had not happened. Nor do they protect the value of the house against assessment for care fee contributions, as the transfer of it into the Trust will be deemed a ‘deliberate deprivation’ of an asset by the authorities, who will means test the client as if they still owned it. I should add that the position is quite different where an Asset Protection Trust is set up by a will to come into effect on death; then it can be a useful and effective device – and the cost of having such a will drafted by a properly qualified professional should not be anything of the order of £4,000.


A couple came to us to update their wills, bringing with them copies of their old ones, prepared by a high street bank. In these the bank had been appointed to act as executor. The clients were shocked to discover that banks charge a fee based on the value of the estate – usually around 4% plus VAT for acting as executor. For an estate worth £500,000, for example, the fee would be £24,000, regardless of how much work is involved in dealing with the Probate. For an estate containing only a house valued at £1,000,000, it would be an eye-watering £48,000.

Four new clients have each brought in a copy of a will prepared for their deceased parent by a will writer. Again, in each case a condition of the will writer’s preparation of the will was that they be appointed to act as executor. Their charge for the probate work? 3% of the value of the estate plus VAT. Some of these wills were quite astonishingly badly drawn, with absolutely no consideration of prevailing law, or even the particular financial and family circumstances of the testator. In light of that, the family members had asked the will writers to renounce their entitlement to act as executors, but in each case the company involved refused to do that, causing huge distress to the family. Again, it is worth noting that will writers do not have to have a professional qualification and are not regulated in any way. My husband was amused to receive an invitation in the post to become a will writer by attending a one morning course (he didn’t go). For some people, the appointment of a professional executor is desirable – but it should never be a condition of a will being prepared that the person preparing it is appointed to the role. The choice should

really be yours alone. Are solicitors expensive? I like to think we are good value. Most solicitors acting as an executor charge for their work by the hour. In cases where a percentage mark-up is charged, the Law Society stipulates that that must be justified on grounds of the complexity of the estate – and even then may not exceed 1.5% of its value plus VAT. We are also fully qualified, regulated by the Solicitor’s Regulation Authority and obliged to carry very substantial indemnity insurance in case an error should ever occur. ■

Helen Starkie Solicitor 5 Gay Street, Bath BA1 2PH 01225 442353



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I WANT SCANDI Words by Matt Bielby Photos by Adam Carter

For Philippa May – Bath Life columnist, and a familiar face in these pages – finding a home in the city she could really make a difference to was proving something of a chore. And then she came across the most unpromising old garagecum-warehouse space… 130 MEDIACLASH.CO.UK


Looks can be deceiving. From outside, the house may still seem like a garage, but the transformation of the interior is extraordinary


ath dream houses aren’t always handsome Georgian terraces, and one of our favourites – and the first in our new semi-regular series Residence, giving an insider’s look at some of the city’s coolest, quirkiest, most desirable homes – is this converted garagecum-warehouse-cum-pub. The lucky owners are fashion label LAZE Wear’s head of brand – and Bath Life columnist – Philippa May and her partner, former Bath Rugby captain Guy Mercer. They found it, disused and dirty, just around the corner from Camden Crescent on Bath’s northern slopes. “We were struggling to find a place in Bath we could really make our mark on,” Philippa says, “then this came up. I was initially keen to have it as a studio space to set up my own business, but Guy had the vision to say, ‘What if it was a house for us to live in?’” The building was pretty much crumbling – “our bedrooms are the old offices to the side of the garage area, and everything was wood-clad, dark and dingy” – but they got to work ripping it all out and discovered original walls from the 1800s beneath. They’re now pretty sure one side of the house used to be a pub called The Bunch of Grapes. “We’re ridiculously attached to this place,” Philippa says. “And it’s the pieces we had custom-made that make it special. The concrete fireplace always makes me smile, and is a massive


talking point when people visit. I knew I wanted something to draw the eye in such a big room, and our poor builders, Izeo Construction, must have thought we were mad – but they figured out how to make it anyway. The result couldn’t have been better.” One of the first things you notice is what a weird shape this place is… We were super lucky that the walls

were pretty good, and the shape so irregular that we didn’t have to change much of the layout – we wanted it to feel authentic, and that meant keeping it as open-plan as possible. We always thought it would feel like a New York loft, super edgy with exposed brick walls, but in reality – and to adhere to building regulations! – it’s ended up having more of a modern, Scandi vibe, with white walls and exposed beams. How long did it take to finish it? We moved in after

about a year of renovation, but we’d sort of run out of money at that point, so the kitchen wasn’t quite there. We lived for a few months with scaffolding planks as our counter tops.

Was it hard to decorate? Super hard. We definitely spent the money where I think it gave the most reward, though – I love our washed wood floors from Boniti, as they make the living areas feel light yet warm, and we kept it all very white in the main living area. It’s nice and fresh, and your decor can speak for itself. The sofa is massive and comfy, and when I saw some huge Nkuku wool cushions to go with it at Homefront Interiors down the road, I couldn’t resist. I spent ages wondering how to fill some of the wall space, and eventually went for a big wooden sideboard from Loaf. We’re lucky that Flowers of Bath has opened up literally a stone’s throw away, and it’s my new favourite go-to for amazing bits of eucalyptus that fill the big, open spaces.



What other local stores do you rate?

I always find absolute gems in The Fig Store; we have amazing unglazed mugs and mason jars from them that serve as cool mini storage. Recently I bought some honeycomb candles from Article – perfect for a table centre piece – and, for furniture that will never go out of fashion, I love Brissi. We have one of their armchairs in the living room, but I know that pieces from Brissi will fit into whatever style of house we may someday have. A lot of our art comes from locals too, which we’ve seen in places like Society Café. They’re buys that will always remind us of the city, wherever we go. We love the kitchen, especially. It was actually inspired

by the sink unit in the main bathroom, made from recycled building planks. We loved the look, so had our kitchen made in similar style by a couple in Dorset, called Atelier Cabinet Makers. We didn’t want it to be too modern or fussy, and loved their attention to detail. There are incredible copper inserts, places where you can really see the amazing wood grain, and they even made us a beautiful ash chopping board to match. I go on and on about the kitchen splashback, too. We bought all our tiles from Mandarin Stone, and tiled our utility in cool grey mixed-texture subway tiles (some glazed, some rough and some unglazed), but the splashback is a particular favourite of mine, and something I’d love to replicate in another house. ■

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Period property design secrets As a specialist interior designer for listed properties and Etons of Bath’s creative director, Sarah Latham has a wealth of experience of renovating period properties. Her interior design practice in Bath focuses on Georgian homes and hotels. We ask her expert advice… HOW DO YOU CREATE UNIQUE BATHROOMS? It’s easy to just walk into a high street shop and pick out standard bathroom fittings, grey tiles and chrome taps. But what if you want to create something with personality and character? What if you live in a Georgian property that deserves more? Read on… Sanitaryware A feature bath such as a roll top can be a show-stopper. Make sure that the angle of the back is comfortable, and the sides aren’t too high to comfortably step in and out of. For basins, choices include above-counter and under-mounted, but think about the materials they’re made with too, as this makes a huge difference – stone, marble, ceramic, glass or concrete. Choose showers with flush trays, classicstyle top quality shower fittings and a minimalist shower screen. Or, go for a flush ceiling rain shower with steam settings, aromatherapy oils and coloured lights. Vanity units A bespoke vanity designed to enable a more spacious, elegant space will double up as a room feature. Choose quirky cabinet handles for an individual look. A marble or granite worktop is practical and beautiful to look at, but consider the profile of its edges and choose a highly polished or honed finish.

Bathroom designed by Etons of Bath including bespoke vanity with stone basin and top.

Bathroom designed by Etons of Bath featuring bespoke hand painted de Gournay wall covering

Lighting Ceiling spots are fine, but have them on a dimmer, and if you have high ceilings, supplement them with a feature chandelier. Avoid contemporary mirrors with lights and opt for character wall lights that would not be out of place in the rest of the house.

vinyl wallcoverings highly suitable for a bathroom, which do wonders to lift a space.

Tiling From handmade encaustic and metallics, to porcelain wood effects and textures, the choice is endless. Think about what look you are trying to create and what tiles or finishes will achieve this. Walls and floors directly exposed to water will need tiling, but areas that just need to be splash-proof can be wood-paneled, wallpapered or painted, then covered in decorators varnish.

Mirrors Framed mirrors are a great option. You can get these made relatively inexpensively and they’ll add a more luxurious feel to the room. Don’t forget to get heat pads incorporated so that they don’t steam up. Mirrors are also fabulous for bouncing light around and brightening a space, especially if your bathroom is on the small side. n

Wall-coverings A recent project was designing a bathroom using DeGournay hand-painted scenic wallpaper to create the ultimate in luxurious bathing. We teamed this with high impact Emporador tiles in the shower area. If this option is out of budget there are fabulous

Window coverings We rarely specify curtains for a bathroom. Instead, voile Roman blinds will let in light, and soften a window whilst enabling privacy.

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Meet the conveyancer The local experts on hand to make sure your property transaction is smooth STUART ROXBOROUGH

PROPERTY EXECUTIVE, BATTENS SOLICITORS 01225 321639; How long have you worked in conveyancing? I have been in this career for over 25 years, having started out in a local sole practitioners solicitors office at the age of 16. I continued in the profession and within property law throughout my working career. What is your favourite part of the job? Knowing I have successfully completed my clients instructions and met their requirements. What key bit of advice would you give to a vendor? Know your finances, prepare your home for selling and find a knowledgeable solicitor you can trust, who is ready to act once a buyer is found. What is the secret of good conveyancing? Staying calm, being organised and knowledgeable about the conveyancing process, and really knowing your clients’ full requirements. Tell us something about yourself? I am a qualified instructor in the Martial Art of Aikido, and also had the privilege of training with 7th Dan black belt Steven Seagal on the Aikido mat in Paris.


PARTNER AND HEAD OF PROPERTY, MOWBRAY WOODWARDS 01225 485700; What is the secret of good conveyancing? It’s no secret! You need to be organised, put your client’s best interests at the forefront, and keep channels of communication open on both sides. What key advice would you give to a vendor? Be prepared, be patient and don’t panic. Make sure your paperwork is completed as quickly as possible, be prepared to wait for the other side to sort theirs out, and don’t worry if they take a little longer or if potential issues arise. Your conveyancer and solicitor are there to inform, advise and support you to ensure the best outcome for you. What’s your favourite Bath property that you have been involved in selling? There are so many. In recent years I’ve found that many of my clients are looking to downsize. This often means selling a beautiful Bath property which holds many fond family memories. At emotional times like these, our personal and bespoke approach to looking after clients really does make all the difference.


01225 730 100; What key bit of advice would you give to a vendor? Use deadlines and ultimatums carefully and sparingly. For most buyers, their house purchase will be their biggest investment in terms of cash, commitment and emotion. When emotions are running high, uncompromising demands can be the cause of the collapse of a sale. What is the secret of good conveyancing? It all comes down to great communication. Keeping all parties informed is the key to a smooth transaction. Letting my clients and those on the other side know immediately about any issues arising, and what can be done to overcome them, will move the process along more quickly resulting in happy clients. What is the biggest mistake that can be made in property transactions? Letting your heart rule your mind. Purchasing a property after the first viewing and without giving enough attention to the reports and surveys can come back to haunt you later on in the process or after you’ve purchased it. What is your favourite part of the job? Actually going to see the property, particularly beautiful country houses, which we all aspire to own.



HEAD OF INTERNATIONAL AND CROSS-BORDER, STONE KING 01225 337599; What is the secret of good conveyancing? I work with international contacts across the world, specialising in France, so for me good communication and having a thorough understanding of international property laws are vital skills. But making sure your client is kept informed, and understands what is happening at any given time, is most important. What changes to property law will be happening in the next couple of years? With Brexit on the horizon, there is a surge in people wishing to complete the purchase or sale of their properties, particularly in France, before 29 March 2019. What key bit of advice would you give to a buyer? When buying property abroad, understanding the local laws and procedures can be daunting. My advice is to do lots of research into the local area and to carefully select the experts you instruct to handle your transaction. How long does the average transaction take? This can vary greatly, but, for example, our transactions in France usually take between two to three months.




01225 762683; What is the biggest misconception surrounding property law? There can be a misconception that it is straightforward and that conveyancing is just a process. I won’t bore the readers with the complexities of land law, but suffice to say that almost every transaction will flag up some sort of an issue that needs to be looked into, whether it is potential breach of covenant (rules relating to the property) query over easements for rights of way or services (the need to walk over somebody’s property to get access to your property), as well as planning or building regulations.

0117 314 5261; What advice would you give someone searching for a conveyancer lawyer? Don’t compare lawyers just on price. Buying a property will often be the biggest single investment in your lifetime, so be prepared to pay a little more for good legal advice. It will be worth the investment in the long term.


What key bit of advice would you give to a vendor? Try to get your ducks in a row as soon as possible. Gather your paperwork and be ready for enquiries. Although there is no legal obligation to do so, it can aid a transaction if you are willing to get updated electrical and heating system reports by qualified engineers, and address any issues flagged as soon as possible. What is the biggest mistake that can be made in property transactions? Unrealistic timescales can create tension and frustrations, particularly in a chain, which can lead to breakdown. Tell us something about yourself? I am Northern Irish, from a farming background, and love animals, particularly dogs and horses.


Everyone has an opinion on property; what misconceptions do people have about conveyancing? That the lawyers delay the process. We really don’t. Conveyancing is not just a paper process, it can be extremely technical, and countless issues can arise. Best bit of your job? Working with my team. Most of them have been with me for over 15 years and I know I can rely on them under pressure. Getting to the end of the day knowing all our clients have moved and are starting the next phase of their life is very rewarding. What common pitfalls do people make when buying or selling a house? Thinking all lawyers are the same! We are really not. Do your research before you instruct a lawyer, to make sure they offer the service you expect.



01225 750000; How has the Bath property market changed in the last few years? The regional market has seen an incredibly varied supply and demand of properties. Currently, demand for properties is lower, which could be an indicator of concern about the wider economic climate. A more local trend is that it is taking longer between an offer being accepted and the exchange of contracts, but we always strive for clients to complete as quickly and efficiently as possible. What is the secret of good conveyancing? The most important thing is to continually evaluate and adapt the process to meet clients’ needs. At Mogers Drewett, we’ve transformed and improved our communication methods to make us more accessible to clients and agents by really listening to how we can help them. We have unpicked the process to break down complex issues, which helps to support our client’s understanding of conveyancing. What key bit of advice would you give to a buyer? Be flexible. It’s easy to fixate and be excited for a date for exchange or completion, but there are several factors that could mean that a specific date may not be possible. So, it’s important to be open with communication and trust that your conveyancer is moving the process along as quickly as they can.


01225 462871; What do you specialise in: I specialise in commercial property and residential conveyancing. I act for individuals, investors, landlords and tenants on a broad range of residential and commercial conveyancing matters, from sales of listed properties to purchases of new builds and Help to Buy schemes. What key bit of advice would you give a vendor? Once you have instructed your solicitor, create a bundle of all your property documents, such as planning consents and certificates for any alterations. Also try to give as much detail about any pathways or rights of access and boundaries as you can. What are the particular challenges of working in conveyancing in Bath Bath is blessed with an abundance of Grade I and II listed buildings, Georgian townhouses and Victorian villas. Such wonderful structures bring with them complications and anomalies, as the properties are modernised over the years. If your home is listed, it is recognised as one of the most important buildings in the country. This means that all parts of the building are protected by law. When you purchase such a property, check that any alterations have the necessary consents: Listed Building Consent as well as Planning Permission. n





PICTURE THIS Tylehurst – one of Lansdown’s finest

Grade-II listed detached houses – has gone on the market, and what a pleasant thought it is to imagine yourself as the new owner By Evelyn Green MEDIACLASH.CO.UK MEDIACLASH.CO.UK 141




ith summer officially just around the corner, our attention turns to the garden as the top space in which to entertain guests. It doesn’t take much imagination to picture a garden party happening in the private, secluded grounds of Tylehurst – one of Lansdown’s finest Grade-II listed detached houses. You can clearly visualise numerous guests approaching the discreet driveway, entering through the automatic wrought iron gates, and parking in the generous courtyard before making their way to the barbeque area, already thick with meaty smoke. At more than half an acre, the south-facing, landscaped gardens, which are mainly laid to lawn, would play host to excitable dogs or maybe toddling children, with mums and dads watching on from the magnificent Bath stone terrace that runs the entire width of the rear of the property. Maybe some guests would be taking in the far-reaching,

uninterrupted views over the Approach Golf Course towards the city of Bath and surrounding hillsides, while others may have brought their swimsuits and will go for a dip in the heated outdoor swimming pool that also has a changing facility and shower nearby. Because this day, in our imagination, is a warm one, a couple of folk would be catching the rays on sunloungers while cheering on others who decided to partake in pétanque on the property’s own boules court. The daydream continues inside the Bath stone Georgian villa, too. The property has been the subject of a substantial refurbishment programme over recent years and is presented in immaculate decorative order with meticulous attention to detail. Contemporary fixtures and furnishings and high-quality decoration sit perfectly alongside many original features typical of the period. Upon entering, there’s a porch that leads into a fine reception hall with a stone floor, decorative cornicing and a stone staircase with a mahogany handrail that rise to the first floor. There is a beautiful double drawing room with wooden floors and fireplaces at each end. The cornicing is exquisite, and windows afford fine views over the gardens and to the city beyond. Doors also lead out on to the stunning terrace, where the party’s already in full swing. Of particular note is the impressive kitchen/dining room (the rainy-day entertainment hub). Over 30 feet in length and nearly 20 feet in depth, the proportions, and the light and views from each of the four pairs of French doors, are breathtaking. The kitchen is fitted with bespoke



furniture, an Aga and a large island unit that incorporates modern appliances, and off the kitchen is a utility room and cloakroom. Also on the ground floor is a formal sitting room, informal TV room and study. Make your way up to the first floor and you’ll find the most incredible and luxurious master suite. An impressive bedroom, dressing room and bathroom all face south towards those amazing views. There are three further bedrooms and bath/shower rooms within the main house. And accessed externally is a guest cottage offering a fifth bedroom and bathroom, because those garden-party lovers may need a place to crash. On top of all of this, the situation of the family home is ideal. It’s just off Sion Hill, in a peaceful position on the northern slopes of Bath, and occupies a highly soughtafter location in one of the most desirable residential addresses in the city. It is conveniently placed for access into central Bath – 1.1 miles away – either by car, or on foot. The stroll will be via the nearby Cotswold Way footpath that leads down through the Approach Golf Course to Royal Victoria Park and beyond towards the handy amenities of St James’s Square, which include a newsagent, wine bar, deli and hairdresser. If you’re in the market for a grand and beautiful home like this, it’s on the market for £4.25m; really, what more could you want in a dream property? We know you can picture yourself there… n Savills Bath, Edgar House, 17 George Street, Bath, BA1 2EN; 01225 474 500;




Somerset Place, Bath

Broughton Gifford, Wiltshire

Northend, Bath

Spacious and well maintained Grade II listed 5 double bedroom farmhouse.

Charming Grade II listed former farmhouse situated in the idyllic St Catherine's valley.

Guide £1,150,000

Guide £1,150,000

Guide £1,150,000




Allington, Wiltshire

Hope House, Bath

Northend, Bath

Beautifully presented Grade II listed barn conversion in a desirable rural location.

4 contemporary four bedroom houses in the exceptional Hope House development.

Attractive former coach house in the quiet village of Northend on the edge of Bath.

Guide £1,395,000

Guide from £1,650,000

Guide £625,000




Greenway Crescent, Bath

Sion Hill, Bath

Dinder, Somerset

4 stunning luxury townhouses in a brand new crescent overlooking woodland.

Detached four bedroom family home with beautiful gardens and panoramic views.

English village rectory with attached cottage, coach house, stables and about 3.9 acres.

Guide from £1,350,000

Guide £1,500,000

Guide £1,500,000

Spacious three bedroom maisonette with an exquisite private landscaped garden.



Spring has sprung in the local property market Spring is now in full bloom, following a long and unsettled winter. Just as the weather delayed the start of the new season, the ‘beast from the east’, alongside other very cold flurries, also accounted for a slow start to the year in property


he quiet start to the year means that the market is about four weeks behind where we would expect it to be. It will soon catch up on itself though, and in Bath we are already seeing a good deal of activity. As the city’s social calendar unfolds over the coming weeks, this will only increase. While short-term fluctuations are worth being aware of, at Savills we take a longerterm market view. Our annual price indices show an encouraging picture in Bath, with the city market surpassing its previous peak in 2015 with 6.5% price growth. Annually, this equates to a modest 0.7%, pointing to a stable, but price-sensitive market. Of course, the residential market is not uniform, and the numbers only tell us so much. Drill down a little deeper, and we can identify certain segments that are particularly affected by these sensitivities. HIGH TAX ENVIRONMENT The affect of the increase in stamp duty on higher value properties continues to make itself felt through a softening in the market at the top end. In addition, sales of apartments, traditionally favourites of investors and


Charlton Mackrell, Somerset Guide £3,500,000 Grade ll* listed Gothic house set in a tranquil and unspoilt location.


















BATH Figures relate to Prime market. Source: Savills Prime Market Index Q1 2018

second home owners, have yet to recover from the impact of the stamp duty surcharge on additional homes, which was introduced just over two years ago. The buyers are still out there, but they are more budget conscious than before, as they seek to absorb the additional cost. LONDON CONNECTION The biggest challenge to our local market now, however, is a reverse ripple effect emanating from London. 15% of buyers in Bath now hail from the capital, up from


Rivers Street, Bath Guide £1,495,000 Elegant and well-presented five storey Grade II listed townhouse.

11% in 2015. London buyers have become increasingly prominent in the £1.5m and above market, now accounting for 26% of buyers spending in this price bracket. A sluggish London market, therefore, means less housing equity to export; Londoners still want to buy in Bath, but they are finding it much harder to sell. LOOKING AHEAD Buyers come from near and far to secure best-in-class property in Bath and so, while overall growth will be subdued over the next 12 months and beyond, the market here is resilient. Over the coming years, we are expecting confidence to return, bringing with it predicted price growth of 14.2% in the South of England over the next five years. We offer a full appreciation of the local market and we understand our clients’ needs. If you are thinking of buying or selling in Bath, get in touch with our team of experts. n


Lansdown Place East, Bath Guide £1,650,000 Substantial Grade II listed Georgian townhouse providing excellent potential.

Luke Brady; 01225 474501;



What can I do if my apartment isn’t selling?


Peter Greatorex from THE APARTMENT COMPANY offers some advice…

he papers might be full of stories about demand for property outstripping supply, but that doesn’t mean it’s always easy to sell your apartment. From estate agent problems to overambitious asking prices, read on to understand what you can do to sell your apartment more easily.




The photos on your property’s online listing aren’t up to scratch With more and more people searching for property online, photographs play a significant role in attracting would-be buyers. You may only have seconds to capture someone’s attention. Before the photographer comes round, make sure that rooms are brightly lit and clutter free – remove unsightly bins, open curtains, and make the beds at the very least. Small touches really do make a big difference.


Your property isn’t being properly promoted Ensure your home is listed on Rightmove – the UK’s biggest portal – as well as being on the estate agent’s own website.

Your asking price is unrealistic If a potential buyer sees your property but it’s substantially above their budget, they’re unlikely to view it. The best way to gauge your home’s value is to combine web research and conversations with a range of local agents. If you decide the asking price is too high, there’s no shame in reducing it. Buyers aren’t being given the best first impression If your property has had a decent amount of viewings but no offers, there might be a problem with the way it’s being presented. Could the bedroom do with a fresh lick of paint? Is the balcony tidy? Is there too much clutter? Are the lightbulbs all working? Walking around the apartment as if you’re on a viewing might help. You could also could ask your estate agent, friends and family for their honest opinions. You should also never underestimate the importance of smell, particularly if you’re a smoker or a pet owner.


You haven’t gone with a specialist agent If you’re selling an apartment, why not go with the experts? Finding an apartment specialist

AJ Removals Removals - Storage - Shipping - Packing

Tel: 01225 404060

estate agent means they will know exactly how to market your home to people looking for apartments. They’ll also understand the leases, be experts in showing off the best parts of your home, and they’ll have a database of people specifically looking for apartments already at their disposal – a wider range of people who will be genuinely interested, instantly. For more information on the best and fastest way to sell your apartment, get in touch with us today. ■

For more advice visit our blog at Sales: 01225 471144 Lettings: 01225 303870

New Storage Facility Now Open

Unit 12 Stable Yard Industrial Estate, Windsor Bridge Road, Bath BA2 3AY


‘visit the laboratory of the scientist whose lectures Mary Shelley attended’

LOCAL LIVES SHEILA HANNON, creative producer at Show of Strength Theatre Company, talks Frankenstein Show of Strength’s awardwinning theatrical walking tour – Frankenstein in Bath – takes you to the home, haunts and writing place of Frankenstein author Mary Shelley. Walk in her footsteps and discover the scandals the Shelleys were so desperate to hide. Here we find out more from the main tour guide, Sheila Hannon… The tour begins as the light fades... Bath looks pretty

gothic at dusk. For the tour, I wear early 19th-century or Steampunk attire (Frankenstein is the first Steampunk novel) and I read letters from Mary Shelley to Percy Shelley, written in Bath; one telling him, ‘I have finished the fourth chapter of Frankenstein…’ – so you hear her authentic voice. We began the tours two years ago (16 June, 2016) on the 200th anniversary of Mary Shelley creating the ‘creature’. This year’s special; it’s the 200th anniversary of the


book being published… Earlier

this year, Frankenstein expert Sir Christopher Frayling unveiled a plaque to Mary Shelley, marking the spot where she lived and wrote. It’s part of the tour. Bath has changed so little in 200 years; we can literally walk in Mary Shelley’s footsteps. Hearing the story where it actually happened really brings it to life. And it’s a lost story; Mary was here five months but didn’t want anybody to know. She was hiding. The reason for this is revealed on the tour.

Here are a few things you’ll learn from the tours…

• Mary had eloped with Percy Shelley when she was 16 and had two children with him, but Percy was already married. • When they eloped, they took Mary’s step sister with them and became notorious as ‘Shelley and his two wives’. • While Mary was in Bath, two young relatives died in strange, tragic circumstances. • Mary’s lodgings were demolished

to make the new entrance for the Roman Baths, but the cellar’s still there and it’s now an electricity substation to light Abbey Churchyard. In Frankenstein, Mary used electricity to bring the ‘creature’ to life – you couldn’t make that up, could you? • Mary’s step sister was pregnant by Lord Byron. In 1816, Bath must have been the sort of place where a single woman could discreetly have a child. • When Percy died, Mary kept his heart in a silken shroud, in her desk, for the rest of her life.

In Bath, you’ll find me spending money on… Clothes from

Some of the places you can expect to visit on the tour are…

My biggest achievements professionally are… Creating

The house of artist John West, who gave Mary painting lessons. We then walk home with her to Abbey Churchyard. We show you the secret location where Byron’s child was born, and where Mary’s mother, Mary Wollstonecraft, lived 30 years earlier (was Mary following her mother the way the ‘creature’ follows Frankenstein?). We see where other family members stayed in the crises that came to a head while Mary was in Bath, and finish with the laboratory of the scientist whose lectures on electricity Mary attended, and who experimented with raising the dead…

Square, on New Bond Street – you’ll have to do the tour to find out the truly scandalous thing that happened on the street. I also love to eat at Sally Lunn’s and Indian Temptation, and my favourite pub is The Crystal Palace.

If I owned Bath for a day, I would… Dedicate more plaques

to the amazing women who lived and worked here. Until recently, 97 per cent of them were, apparently, to men.

the theatre at Bristol’s Tobacco Factory (1998) and producing great seasons of new work there until 2003. (My job is to develop theatre projects – usually new work in unusual locations – sometimes write them, and raise the money to make them happen). Something not many people would know is… My uncle was

in the Everton squad in the 1930s with Dixie Dean and Joe Mercer. n

Frankenstein in Bath walking tours run until October; tickets are £10; for more information, visit

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