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Food/Arts/Entertainment/Shopping/Property @BathLifeMag






ISSUE 408 / 3 – 17 JANUARY 2020 / £3







ABOVE: Grayson Perry, his early years

– see page 28 for more; BELOW: Grayson’s Biker Pot


appy New Year! Welcome to 2020 and a very special issue. You’ll notice we’ve got none other than famed artist Grayson Perry on our cover. His exhibition Grayson Perry: The Pre-Therapy Years opens at the Holburne Museum on 24 January and reveals his body of work – mainly pots, plates and sculptures – between 1982 and 1994. As you might expect from Grayson, the pieces are playful and humorous as well as politically engaged and challenging. We sat down with him to discuss, well, everything – fame, politics, ceramics, gender and everything in between. Insightful, engaging, funny and frank, Grayson remains the compelling character he’s always been; see page 28 for the full rip-roaring interview. Elsewhere, it being January and all, we’ve got loads to get you feeling optimistic about. First up is our wellbeing feature on page 65 – think laughter yoga, sleep retreats and dreamy spas. And on page 40 we shine a light on the many courses and workshops happening locally so you can kick off the year with something fun and fulfilling firmly lodged in the diary. On page 52, drinks and a bit of street-food nosh are devoured at new Mexican bar Dos Dedos and if you’re one of those people who struggle a bit in January (that’s all of us, right?), we take a look at some of the amazing stuff to look forward to this year – see page 10 – like the fact that both Patti Smith and Michael Bublé are coming to Bath. What more could you want... Happy January to all!

HARRIET NOBLE Follow us on Twitter @BathLifeMag Instagram @bathlifemag I BATH LIFE I 3

Issue 408 / 3–17 January 2020 COVER rayson erry photographed y ichard nsett


rayson erry re ects on the first decade of his career as he d uts a collection of once lost works at he ol urne


35 ARTS INTRO hese e ocati e portraits of man s

est friend certainly pull at the heart strings

36 WHAT’S ON heatre music family stuff and a

handful of e hi itions

40 CLASSES & COURSES ew year new skills 49 FILM scar season is upon us 51 BOOKS ic picks his fa ourite classics to see you

through anuary


52 RESTAURANT n oy the easy going i es at ath s


e ican oint

55 FOOD & DRINK NEWS ew deals new lood and

what we can look forward to in selection of winter warmers




61 INTRO erfection is a eautiful pair of shoes 62 EDITOR’S CHOICE nd the colour of the year is...






Issue 408 / 3–17 January 2020


27 INSIDE STORY Philippa creates spa vibes at home 65 WELLBEING Take a moment to breathe at these

local spas and wellbeing experiences

73 ANÉ Retinoid or retinol? Ané breaks down what we

should be using

78 GARDENS Find out what’s in store for Bath’s

horticultural scene in 2020

98 LIVES Comedian Josie Long drops in for a chat


85 BATHWORKS The local businessess making

the headlines


91 SHOWCASE Fall in love with this quintessential



country home



Editor Harriet Noble Deputy Editor Lydia Tewkesbury Managing Editor Deri Robins deri.robins@mediaclash. Senior Art Editor Andrew Richmond Graphic Design Megan Allison Cover Design Trevor Gilham Editor’s Photo Damon Charles Contributors Matt Bielby, Nic Bottomley, David Flatman, Rachel Ifans, Philippa May, Sophie-Claire McLeod and Nick Woodhouse Group Advertising Manager Pat White Deputy Advertising Manager Justine Walker Deputy Advertising Manager Polly Jackson Account Manager Annabel North annabel. Sales Executive Louis Grey Production/Distribution Manager Sarah Kingston Deputy Production Manager Kirstie Howe Production Designer Matt Gynn Chief Executive Jane Ingham 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 and Exeter. We also publish foodie mag Crumbs (, @CrumbsMag). 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:




Making bee boxes at LoveSnowHill launch


A FRESH START FOR SNOW HILL he o e now ill programme has o cially egun. The year-long scheme launched with a celebration at the Gateway Centre on London Road, where local residents – with a little help from local police community support o cers emma and hloe spent the day together planting spring owering tulip ul s and installing bee box hotels across the estate. Organised by the Snow Hill Residents’ Association in partnership with housing association Curo and Bell Decorating Group, #LoveSnowHill will encourage locals to get involved with a range of great events including establishing a forest school, setting up a regular gardening club for children and adults alike and har esting the wild ower meadows that have recently been planted around the estate. “We are so excited to launch the Love Snow Hill project and get our estate looking beautiful,” says Rowan Edwards, chair of the Residents’ Association. “Snow Hill has an unfortunate long-standing reputation of having issues and we are working really hard to change this. We are focusing on addressing a lot of the legacy problems and showing that we do have a wonderful community of people, determined for change.” For more:

The Mission Theatre turns 15-years-old this month. The one-time church was transformed into its current iteration as a theatre space by Ann and Andrew Ellison, founders of the Next Stage Theatre Company, in 2005 after lying derelict for around seven years. From its beginnings as Next Stage’s home, The Mission has become an artistic hub over the past 15 years, hosting an eclectic and exciting array of work from smallscale professional drama companies as well as concerts – the acoustics are fantastic – and is part of Bath’s varied festivals programmes. This milestone is all the more


Ann Juby, Tamara Downes, David Flatman, Yani Fernando and Karen Mathie

impressive as The Mission Theatre receives no public funding, but instead survives via the support of its sponsors, benefactors, funders and patrons – including famed playwright Alan Ayckbourn. “Snatches of life, laughter and love are, I hope, what we have brought to many thousands of people who have supported our venture and been to the myriad happy and memorable events held in The Mission Theatre over the last 15 years,” says Ann Allison, co-founder and artistic director. “Happy Birthday and, as Alan says: ‘long live The Mission Theatre!’” For more: Ann Ellison with supporters Avonvale Carpets during the renovations back in 2005



In the spirit of the giving season, Bath Metro Bank held a fundraiser and networking event in aid of Children’s Hospice South West. Over 30 business people came along, including representatives from Visit Bath, Savills and Monahans among many others. Our very own columnist David Flatman was on hand as the speaker for the evening, entertaining the group with tales from his recent trip to Japan, where he was commentating on the Rugby World Cup. “I was delighted to support this event for Children’s Hospice South West,” says David. “Charlton Farm Hospice, just 20 miles from Bath, looks after children with life-limiting conditions and families going through such a di cult time. t s so important that the families using the Hospice are able to visit for short stays and really spend time together having fun and making memories. As a dad myself, I am fortunate that my children are both healthy, so anything I can do to support a children’s charity, supporting families in a different position to mine is a real pleasure. For more: I BATH LIFE I 9


Patti Smith

Josie Long

JOSIE LONG: TENDER The three-time Edinburgh Comedy Award nominee and all-around delight Josie Long is back out on tour after a brief hiatus. In her latest offering, Josie reflects on the madness of new motherhood, but mostly about how we might be kinder, gentler and more joyful. See our interview with Josie on page 98. 20 February, Komedia; BEETHOVEN ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATIONS Join the worldwide celebrations of Beethoven’s 250th birthday with Bath Festivals. The Assembly Rooms and The Guildhall will host six concerts – three in March and another three in May – of the

composer’s entire cycle of 16 String Quartets. 27-29 March, Guildhall & 22-24 May, The Assembly Rooms; PATTI SMITH The Queen of Punk is coming to Bath Festival in May. She’ll perform at The Forum – her first appearance at the venue since 2012 – in one of only a handful of live appearances scheduled for 2020. A celebrated singersongwriter, poet, photographer and activist, Patti has fans of all generations. 22 May, The Forum;

The Heath Quartet

Michael Bublé

MICHAEL BUBLÉ LIVE AT THE ROYAL CRESCENT The man who makes hearts quiver across the country will be performing open air at The Royal Crescent for two nights this summer. Vocally and visually stunning, the unique performance – the first concert at The Royal Crescent in 17 years – will blend Michael’s cheeky chappy showmanship with the World Heritage surrounds. 24 & 25 July; The Royal Crescent; TEDxBATH This year, the theme is Inter-Connected. The ever-fascinating line-up of speakers will consider how local issues are informed and improved by international influences, collaborations and ideas – and vice versa. 10 October, The Forum;



CRAFT FESTIVAL Bath is finally getting its own Craft Festival. The non-profit makers organisation based in Devon – where it runs its renowned festival in Bovey Tracey – is bringing its gorgeous offering of meet the maker events, creative workshops, demonstrations and all-around creative inspiration-fest to Bath for the first time. 28-29 November, The Assembly Rooms;


SIX Nominated for five Olivier Awards including Best New Musical, SIX is an absolute must for your 2020 theatre schedule. The story of the six wives of Henry VIII in song, it’s 80 minutes of pure woman power. 18-23 February, Theatre Royal;


TOULOUSE-LAUTREC AND THE MASTERS OF MONTMARTRE See the Victoria Art Gallery transformed into the streets of 19th century bohemian Paris for this exhibition, which sees Lautrec’s complete collection of posters exhibited together for the first time. 15 February – 26 May, Victoria Art Gallery;


Feeling the post-Christmas blues? Don’t fear, there’s plenty coming up for us to look forward to...


SCENE Asha Huggins and Sophia Huggins


David Rolls, Nicola Green and James Hooton

Matthew Tither, Oliver Ziegler, Dave Cook, Jude Deaman and Steve Best

xxxxx Rosie Phillips, Helen Mulloy Reid and Olivia Thomas

Dom Chambers and Sarah Davies


Lee Coombes performs a poem

Developing Health & Independence (DHI) recently celebrated two decades of work. The charity works with marginalised and disadvantaged people in need of support – including a range of services like supported housing, drug treatment and social prescribing. A group of 150 people joined the celebration at Widcombe Social Club, which featured performances from speakers, poets and singers – DHI clients and supporters alike. The gathering was another part of DHI’s wide-ranging Vision Project, which has spanned podcasts, events, talks, a book and even a travelling exhibition about their work, which has been seen by hundreds of people around BANES, Bristol and Wiltshire. Photos by Alexander Caminada

Chris Jorgensen, Jenny Gage, Laura Jorgensen and Louise Peters


Jason Fordham, Louisa Chowen, Hayley Hunter and Gerry Curran



Bob Townsend, Sam Turner and Richard Townsend

Ben Chappell and Elle Chappell


The Novia Foundation and Walcot House joined forces to present Tales from Tokyo. Recently returned from a trip to Japan for the Rugby World Cup, David Flatman was on hand for the inside scoop on the tournament – as well as his unique take on his Tokyo adventures. Matt Powell and Francois Louw joined him for an evening of tales and giggles, with audience members also having the chance to dig into some pre-game pizza in the cocktail bar. The event raised an amazing £5,000 for the Foundation, which will use the money to support the various charities, organisations and individuals they work with. n ia finan ial k David Flatman and Francois Louw

Photos by Matt Roblin

Shane Austin and Helen Austin

Mathew Weaver, Anne Moss, Tim Moss and Martin Higginson

Paul Parry, Owen Lambert, Fina Hughes, Mike Wortelhock, Jack Painter, Oliver Whitehead and Oliver Trafford Phil De Glanville and Neil Watkins


Sam Fanthorpe and Emmie Hughes

Andrew Polson and Jon Cameron



Richard Madley, Chandra Davadason, Anita Jaynes and Jon Miles

Luke Brady, Anna Nurkowski and Matthew Pegler


Thrings held their annual Christmas party at The Bird’s Christmas Tavern. tuffed with au les glitter and hristmas cheer it made the perfect enue for the firm to cele rate the season with their clients referrers and new contacts. he special guests of the op law firm got snuggly y the ta ern s roaring fire for a cosy hristmas party in rom com worthy surrounds. Photos by Beata Cosgrove

Allan Lloyd, Leah Tattersall and Alistair Williamson

Chris Stevens, Harriet Banks and Tom Annear Enjoying the festive ambiance

Craig Ellam, Carl Harfield, Stuart Doughty and Louise Harvey Jack King, Alice Paye and Rupert Hart


Christa Taylor and Ian Taylor

Marc Lucas, Ben Jones and Penelope Munro



Piers Russell-Cobb, Lord Maclaurin, Paula Maclaurin and Jonny Gould

Martin Bax MBE and Matthew Fort

Liv O’Hanlon, Jane Gordon, Kirsten Ingram and Joanna Weinberg


Justin Doherty and Fanny Dubes Arbuthnott

Santha Hancock, Shanti Faiia, Julia Kogan and Charles Nevin

Charles Nevin made an appearance at the Bath Spa Hotel to launch his brand new book, Sometimes in Bath. After a short introduction from the playwright and broadcaster Jonathan Maitland, Charles gave a reading from the book to the audience, with guests including the Countess of Oxford and Asquith Lord and Lady MacLaurin of Knebworth and novelist Sebastian Faulks.


Phillipa Watson

The Marble Works in Bath raised £40,000 for Dorothy House Hospice Care with a charity golf day and auction at Cumberwell Park Golf Club. A full game of 116 players was followed by a sport panel chat hosted by David Flatman. The Marble Works of Bath is a familyrun outfit that chose orothy ouse as the eneficiary for their charity golf day because of the support their family has received from the hospice. Jeremy Guscott presenting prizes to Indigo Telecom

Photos by Andy Crook

Q&A hosted by David Flatman and featuring Jason Leonard, Rob Henderson, Craig Chalmers and Tom Shanklin

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Sharing is not caring Flats has a new hobby – but he’s going to try not to bore everyone talking about it…



“One negative element of all this is the realisation that I am incredibly boring”

have a friend who walks everywhere. Walking e erywhere is fine of course ut anging on a out it without cessation is less fine. ha e three friends who are egan and two of them don t mention it. ha e nine friends who do crossfit and se en of them don t mention it. nd ha e two friends who think igel arage is great one of whom doesn t tell e ery human eing with whom he makes eye contact during his waking week. he reason the more discreet friends on this list are my preferred ones is ecause they recognise that their thing is like their children only really interesting to them. ne negati e element of all this for me is the realisation that am incredi ly oring. really like crossfit and ha e said so many times. or this apologise. also recently did that thing that e ery single decent person on this earth hates and produced my phone at a loud fun e ent in order to show someone do not know an unargua ly hilarious ideo of my daughter inad ertently using a terri le swearword instead of the word loads . ow the ideo and the word are utterly fantastic and awful ut only to me. o that loke do not know that second slot of his life he had to endure that it where go to hotos then ideos then do that torturous slow scrolling ack through months of top class footage was a slot fore er lost agonisingly irretrie a le. e s pro a ly recounted my awfulness to his lo ed ones which unforgi a ly means that he is still losing life ecause of me. lso the pu was so loud that he couldn t e en hear it. od the more think a out it the more hate what did that night. nyway now seems a good time to re eal that ha e disco ered

walking and that m walking e erywhere and that lo e walking o you lo e walking o you ha e any photographs or ideos of you walking r of people you know walking f you do then show them to lots of people you don t know ecause they need to walk more in order to sa e the en ironment and how will they know that they are awful people for e er dri ing anywhere unless you tell them s things stand li e in ansdown or is that on ansdown and ha e always worn my refusal to confront this imalayan slope pied as a eastly adge of honour. ell my walkiest friend forced me recently to walk into town in the rain. espite the high le els of an iety was e periencing pre match it was actually rather fun. y little girl she of potty mouth lo ed it and it didn t take the hour claimed it would. t took minutes ittle iss pleti e and her sausage dog legs slowing progress to an am le. he ascent with a tummy full of eckford ottle hop goodness took longer and this upset me at the time. ith re ection achie ed though it felt good not to ha e taken my enormous car into town do lo e my electric ike ut not when the skies are crying and my neglected lungs appreciated their elated resuscitation. did the walking thing again today shu ing down to the reen ird af for two reakfasts and lo ed it. o ll keep walking ut if it s alright with you won t keep going on a out it. ate it when folks do that. David Flatman is an ex-Bath and England rugby star turned TV pundit and rent-o-mic. Follow him on Twitter a i at an I BATH LIFE I 25



HOME COMFORTS How can you get full-on luxurious spa-type interiors at home? Philippa has the answers…


he stresses of the season seem to mount e en more e ery year is that ust me lo e winter and the appropriateness of hi ernating when the weather gets dark and cold ut this year with a ig house mo e on the horizon and our possessions seemingly spread all o er ath e een struggling to ed down and get some me time in. here s usually nothing etter than getting in from a gruelling day at work where you e left the house in the dark and returning to run yourself a warm ath with some candles to really put you at ease. ith all the mess of mo ing there was only one answer to remain sane some weekly trips to ucknam pa in order to recline and rela . e een trying to fill my e enings with a late night swim followed y a read and it s the first time in a while that e finished a good ook other than on holiday (This is Going to Hurt y dam ay get on the andwagon and read it you won t e disappointed and if you ha en t een out to ucknam ark yet what are you waiting for ust twenty minutes outside of the centre of ath it s the perfect

“Think leafy fig plants, grey veined marble and warm beige walls”

near y retreat to get you into the holiday mood. he spa oasts a delicious open fire ne t to the pool perfect for a dark e ening of rela ation and you can e en enture up to the house for a mince pie and some mulled wine to top off your isit. y new weekly spa retreat ha it should pro a ly end soon ut e en oyed it so much that m keenly deli erating how to get the spa i e at home to create the same sanctuary feeling and my new fa ourite room in the house has ended up eing the athroom... uite often a athroom is designed solely on function rather than e oking a sense of health and well eing too. t s a room you won t ha e noticed that you actually spend a lot of time in whether that s long showers aths or ust rushing your teeth so why do we not put the same amount of time and attention to detail when designing it as we would with say our kitchen e u enating your soak space is a great idea and doesn t necessarily ha e to in ol e a ig o erhaul. simple step to mi ing up your look is replacing old hardware with something new and more modern. one are the days where your only ine pensi e option is chrome taps. ow lack rass and e en rose gold ha e ecome popular choices. ersonally would steer away from the o erused copper rose gold trend and opt for a timeless and lu ury look especially in a eorgian

house, with some satin or brushed rass fi tures that lend well with this year s it colour greige the careful lend of grey and eige that perfectly complements some rass hardware. m lo ing chool ouse hite y arrow and all to create the ultimate athroom ackdrop and the great thing a out it is that it allows you to melt together warm and cool tones think leafy fig plants grey eined mar le and warm eige walls all pulled together with rass fi tures and a dark centre piece athtu . e e ust painted our cast iron ath in a metal paint colour match of eptune s harcoal to create a striking focal point in the centre of a ig greige athroom and the effect is already gra ing attention. ead to local athroom fa ourite ipples on ondon oad to find a collection of sumptuous athroom designs to choose from or talk to their in house designers to create something more espoke for you. he finishing touch to my athroom a ode is the lighting to really accentuate that feeling of eing in a spa worthy setting go rogue with a pendant instead of the sole use of s. anging an elegant chandelier o er the ath will allow you to dim your space and create a fi e star setting to curl up in this winter ust add wine. Philippa May is an interiors enthusiast and is Director of her own branding and marketing company Mayd Studio. Follow her on Instagram @_philippamay_ I BATH LIFE I 27



Grayson Perry’s the outsider who became a national treasure, the goodnatured, self deprecating potter who wears women’s clothing, wins Turner Prizes, creates engaging TV documentaries, loves motorbikes as much as platform shoes, and glides etween different social and artistic circles with a chuckle, a smile and envious ease. Now a unique exhibition of some of his earliest – and rudest – work is opening at Bath’s Holburne Museum in late January; Bath Life went to meet him Words by Matt Bielby Main portrait by Richard Ansett I BATH LIFE I 29


here’s no-one quite like Grayson Perry: gangly of frame, wild of hair, his female alter ego – Claire – by turns Sloane Ranger sexy (mostly in the early years, admittedly and knowingly matronly. e was the first contemporary artist to deliver a Reith Lecture on BBC adio in wore a mother of the ride outfit to receive his CBE; and seems constantly up for talking engagingly about everything and anything: art, sexuality, Britishness, teddy bears, sheds. Most of all, you feel, he’s just naturally very good with people, and time spent chatting with him ust ies y. These days Perry produces fewer and fewer pots, preferring to make TV shows and tour his stage act, but back in the ’80s, when he started, he was mightily prolific producing angry punky ceramics co ered in written rants and drooping penises, mixing gritty reality and sexual fantasy with grim, gleeful abandon. When The Holburne’s director, Chris Stephens, suggested an e hi ition of his earliest work asically stuff from his first decade now du ed he re herapy ears Grayson loved the idea, and the mission became to track them all down. After all, the artist himself had kept few records, and had no idea where most of them had got to. “The idea occurred to me because The Holburne’s own collection is especially rich in ceramics,” Chris says. “Grayson has since become a household name, but few people have seen the early works which made his name, and it’s interesting for a historic museum to look at a contemporary artist through a historic lens.” Grayson’s work has always been eclectic and a little rude full of sse landscapes space shuttles and fighter pilots doing unspeakable things – and in his early work this strand is clearer, and often cruder, than ever. here will definitely e some challenging imagery on display,” Chris says, “because Grayson used his art to explore and express his complex psychology – as he’s said, it’s like meeting his younger self, an angrier, more priapic Grayson.” Just as charming, though, in his own way. It’s going to be fun to see how Bath reacts to him… So Grayson, The Pre-Therapy Years covers… what? The first decade of your career?

ore or less we decided the cut off point would e so it s a out years of my output from on. d been to art college before then, but ’83 was when I took up ceramics semi-seriously, and I was fairly productive, making, exhibiting, and selling, over that entire period. One of the great things about this exhibition has been how interesting it’s been to see some of these older works after all these years, because I didn’t have any record of them at all.




ABOVE: Grayson as Claire, cutting a rather fine figure during ‘the pre-therapy years’; OPPOSITE: Another of Claire’s looks from the period, plus pots and plates with names like ‘Kinky Sex’ and ‘Meaningless Symbols’ from the exhibition: until lately, Grayson himself had hardly seen any of these in decades

“I did what I did then as an angry young person, but it’s similar to what I do now”

But you’re sure they’re all yours?

Oh yes; there’s never any doubt if I did it or not. I’ll always recognise my own work, even if I couldn’t describe it to you; I have a very visual memory. So we put a call out on social media, and I even asked for contributions when I was on The One Show one time. In the end about 150 pieces came out of the woodwork. And were you glad that they all did?

Ha ha! Because they might be no good, you mean? The work is patchy, of course, but I generally feel very compassionate about my earlier self. I did what I did then as an angry, energetic young person, and it’s similar to what I do now, just with less skill or control. I can see myself exactly in even the oldest pieces of work, though, and especially when looking at some of the pieces co ered in te t. here s one plate called think For Sale’, which has a sales pitch written all over it – and it sounds practically the same as something I might write now. All my themes are more or less there, just in an unformed way. Do you feel the therapy that came later knocked any of this early invention out of you…?

No, it sorted out many of my issues – and it certainly made me a clearer communicator. I think it’s a fantasy that a lot of creative people have that, if they go into therapy, it will destroy their creativity. But it’s a myth; I think they’re mostly just scared to look inside themselves. Going into therapy is actually like having your toolshed cleared up – you still keep all the tools, but now you can find them more easily.



And what were you in therapy for?

Oh, I was just trying to get over the usual shit. What would that ’80s guy, the one who made all these pots and plates, think of the success you’re enjoying now?

He’d be very surprised but very pleased, I’m sure. But I do think that he’d be pretty shocked that I’d done so well in quite so many ways. When I started making these works I was on the dole and squatting in central London, often feeling very sorry for myself, but always energetic and working hard. Those, at least, were two qualities that I always had. And how did you start to become famous?

I had help, of course. The art dealer, James Birch, ga e me my first e hi ition and continued to show me for most of this period; he was an enormously good supporter, and all the clients and the collectors he had around him were great too. I sometimes meet people who bought my work very early on, and they ask if I’d mind them selling them on for a huge profit. m always saying to them,‘Great! Cash in!’ Did you find people reluctant to take ceramics seriously as an art form back then?

Still do. There’s a degree of intellectual snobbery about traditional crafts which I sensed even back then, but I used it to my advantage. I was always looking for an angle that would make the art world discomforted in a way, as that’s what artists do – we’re always looking for where the tender spots are on the body cultural. Ceramics remain the lower middle class neighbour of art, which I enjoy – people would look at what I was doing, and say, “I can’t believe he’s got a degree from a good university.” And I e ploited that to a certain e tent.

The pot above is called ‘Armageddon feels so very reassuring’, a cheery little piece from 1988

You now make TV shows, for one thing.

And that’s great, because you get to go around with your little gang there are ust four or fi e of us usually all close friends ha ing enormous fun. ou get to ha e adventures when you’re making documentaries, and they give you amazingly privileged access into worlds you couldn’t normally get into. For me the shoots are like rilliant holidays and the films that come out of them are almost bi-products.

They do, so it worked both ways – as a sort of provocation to the art world, yes, but it also worked to open up the audience. Because regular people understand what ceramics are, and have such a history with vase and plates, it made it easier for me to quickly develop a wide audience, which I’ve always had.

Really, I don’t know if it is or it isn’t either. Ceramics are held in great reverence in the culture landscape of the Far East, say, but there’s a more of a workmanlike attitude to them in Britain and Europe. The art world is happy to accept a shark or a urinal as art, but it’s taken it quite a while to accept a pot. As much as anything, it’s a class thing.

But now, walking around an art gallery, do you find far more people working in ceramics because of your influence than ever before?

eramics are still definitely my gimmick ut yes at somewhere like Frieze art fair now you will see more ceramics than you ever would have 20 years ago. And that’s okay – none of these young artists are competing with me. In fact, I don’t have that much to do with contemporary art now li e in a different world. es I’m still a contemporary artist, but I work in more general cultural fields these days m more an amateur


So you don’t make much any more?

Oh, of course I do; I constantly have things on the go. But my real subject matter and my point of interest is the socio-political landscape now, and wherever my inspiration comes from, it’s from that; it’s certainly not from other artists.

The upside, of course, is that most British people quite like pots…

Is it just that people don’t always consider pottery a real art form…?

anthropologist-sociologist, really. My main interests lie with society.

What about the panel shows?

“The art world is happy to accept a urinal as art, but it’s taken a while to accept a pot”

They’re a bit more take it or leave it. I mean, they’re fun sometimes – things like Have I Got News For You – but not as much as my stage shows. Those are my real passion at the moment. I like to do live things, and I’ve done a couple of tours now. I don’t like to call it stand up, though; I think of it as more of a TED talk with laughs. So you’re gradually inching towards the theatrical?

I am, and I’m already planning more shows for this time ne t year. m not sure if m coming to ath ut ll definitely e in ristol ust me on stage with my slides a little bit of audience interaction, and plenty of sociopolitical provocations. My last show was themed ‘Them and s and the twist was that it was all a out re it ut that we didn t mention re it once. ake no mistake though e ploited re it to the max. Do you think you learned anything doing that?

We talked around all the issues that have formed, and the audience had these little machines which gave me

THE BIG INTERVIEW feedback, providing instant polls the whole time. There might be 2,000 people there, and I could ask what proportion of them went to university, for example, and immediately find out. y audience is ery well educated by the way, so it’s always between 60 and 70 per cent.) ore fun was finding out things like say whether they thought camper vans were Labour or Tory – they’re always Labour, in fact, if you ever need to know.

I become eight per cent more Tory with every decade of my life.

Sounds fun!

Oh it was, and we’re taking it to Australia very soon, so it’ll be interesting to see what they make of it there. Australia knows who I am – my TV series have all been broadcast there, and I had a big contemporary art show a couple of years ago – and though it doesn’t have Brexit, it has all the same issues revolving around immigration, nationalism, all that. Plus, if anything, over there it seems even more charged.

There was a lot of noise, wasn’t there? What’s interesting is that when you start distrusting all of the facts and the policies and the statements, and it all starts sounding a bit meh meh meh, your choice boils down to what it always was: how people feel. Do I like X? Or do I prefer Y? Am I naturally inclined to vote this way or that way? All the facts then become a sort of smoke screen to disguise raw emotional positions – except that we’re much more aware that it is a smoke screen nowadays too.

How important do you think the way you dress is to the success of Grayson Perry?

How often do you still dress in the full Grayson Perry regalia?

Well, it’s good PR, not least as gender has become such a hot topic nowadays. en years ago when first poked my head above the parapet, so to speak – I knew that dressing as a woman was a political act as well as, for me, a fetish. I’ve always exploited my own perversion to the max. Gender is an incredibly deep part of our identity, so it’s no surprise that it’s become so charged, and such an important conversation to have. Warning ells always go off with me when people think that their behaviour is purely biological and not socially constructed; yes, some behaviours are biological, but not many of them. So you’re very much on the nurture, not nature, side of that debate…?

It’s safer to assume that it’s nurture; that way there’s a chance that you can do something about it. But as with everyone, my opinions shift about – and, like everyone,

Do you mind that?

I play with it! Whenever I vote it’s win-win – if I vote Labour, as I usually do, I get to feel morally superior. But then if the Tories get in, I pay less tax. And how did you enjoy the recent election?

Very little of my waking life is actually in a dress these days – it’s a distraction even to me. I probably spend no more than one day a week – mostly in the evenings, or sometimes in the daytime if the occasion feels right – as a transvestite. I tend not to do TV any more as a tranny, as all people see is “man in dress, man in dress”. Of course, it’s still fun at times – and because I’m looking forward to coming down to Bath, I’m planning my wardrobe now. Further plates and pots from the late ’80s and early ’90s, including ‘Biker Pot’ at the top there, and ‘Essex Plate’ at the bottom of the page

Maybe come Jane Austen style?

Oh, that isn’t one I’ve ever really gone for, the whole Regency era look. I prefer Victorian – I’ve got quite a good ictorian lady s outfit ut suppose at a push could make a decent Regency matron. I’m not going to be the sylph-like heroine any more, that’s for sure. But maybe Lizzy Bennet’s mum! Goodness, it sounds much harder than just choosing whether to wear a blue or a black shirt each morning…

Well, that’s your typical bloke, innit? The fact that your choice is between blue and black doesn’t surprise me. I used to have a real obsession with patterned shirts, as it goes as they re a sort of lokey camou age they say could almost be a feminist, but I’m not’. I bet you come across a few patterned shirts on TV panel shows…

They’re a comedian’s thing, aren’t they? One tiny gesture towards non masculine tradition. en only mo e away from their traditional ways of being in incremental stages, and it will take several generations to see a real shift in gendered behaviours, I’d have thought. So yes, in a hundred years time we might e in a ery different place to where we are now – that’s if we’re still around, of course… You think we might not be?

No, I imagine the human race will have died out long before then. I give us between 50 and 100 years. You and me will be safe enough, but our grandchildren are going to have a really shit time. Ha ha ha! Grayson Perry The Pre-Therapy Years starts at The Holburne Museum on January 24, running till May 25; it then moves to museums in York and Norwich; I BATH LIFE I 33



The Dog Show celebrates dogs and their owners via the works of local artist Sally Muir. In 2013, Sally starting drawing a dog a day and posting her pictures on Facebook and the collection that grew from that project is now being exhibited at the Victoria Art Gallery. “I love how devoted people and dogs are to each other, how dogs have such distinct personalities and how we attribute complex emotions to them,” says Sally, a dog lover all her life. “Dogs bring out the best, and sometimes the worst, in people. I try to treat each dog as the individual that he or she is. I take creating a dog portrait as seriously as I do a human portrait.” She works in variety of media, from wire drawings to lithography, paper cuts, pen and ink, and potato prints. Sally’s works have featured in the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, the Royal West of England Academy Open, the National Open Art Competition Winners Show, and the Discerning Eye Artists Choice exhibition, and she has been the recipient of many awards. Peggy, by Sally Muir, is one of the pictures exhibited as part of The Dog Show, from 30 November 2019 to 9 February 2020; Victoria Art Gallery; Bridge Street. I BATH LIFE I 35

WHAT’S ON 3 January – 2 February

Eric Owens and Angel Blue star in Porgy and Bess

EXHIBITIONS Until 5 January

MATISSE: MASTER OF LINE Though perhaps more known for his bright and colourful paintings, Matisse was also admired for his line drawings. Collector and dealer, John Kasmin has put together a striking selection of those drawings, available to see right now. They provide a concise but intense insight into Matisse’s talent as a draughtsman. Mon-Sun, 10am-5pm; £12.50; The Holburne;

Until 5 January

REMBRANDT IN PRINT figurehead of utch art history in addition to his paintings, Rembrandt was also known for his prints. Fine, detailed and scratchy, the pieces are deeply evocative and really worth a


look. Organised by the Ashmolean Museum and the University of Oxford, the collection features some of Rembrandt’s most iconic images. Mon-Sun, 10am-5pm; £12.50; The Holburne;

Until 6 January

ART BAR UNWRAPPED A festive collaboration between four local artists: Emma Taylor, Emma Rose, James Nunn and Lucy Saunders. Expect a bright and beautiful selection of paintings, prints and cards, which you can peruse while sipping on a cocktail – or a coffee if you prefer. Mon-Sun, 8am-10pm; Abbey Hotel;

24 January – 21 March MARINER Here, 14 artists consider the

resonance of Simon Taylor Coleridge’s The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. “Inspired by language and rich visual metaphor, Mariner connects the past with the present to retell an epic tale for the 21st century says r arah hapman co-curator of the exhibition. “Our exploration is informed by the latest research into marine science and marine pollution, the movement and migration of peoples across the seas, hidden postcolonial histories and human vulnerability and isolation.” Tues-Sat, 11am-5pm; The Andrew Brownsword Gallery, The Edge;

24 January – 25 May

GRAYSON PERRY: THE PRE-THERAPY YEARS An exhibition built from Grayson’s ‘lost’ works crowd-sourced from

around the UK following a successful public appeal in 2018. This reintroduction of the explosive and creative works he made in the ’80s will shine a light on his use of pottery to address radical issues. See page 28 for the full interview with Grayson. Mon-Sun, 10am-5pm; £12.50; The Holburne;

PLAYS/SHOWS 9–11 January

JAMES ROWLAND’S SONGS OF FRIENDSHIP Three shows from this acclaimed performer: Team Viking, the tale of his best friend’s dying wish for a proper Viking burial; n re i erent Words for Love on finding and then losing the lo e of his life and finally Revelations, James’s story of being a

WHAT’S ON sperm donor for his best friends. 8pm; prices vary; Ustinov Studio;

Until 12 January

RAPUNZEL Rapunzel, the musical. Need we say more? This funny version of the young woman desperate to escape from the confines of her tower and the clutches of her overbearing witch mother ust ne er gets old. Times and prices vary; the egg;

14–18 January

GHOST STORIES Prepare to feel afraid… very afraid. Jeremy Dyson and Andy Nyman’s uniquely scary cult phenomenon is coming to ath. o see it if you dare. See your deepest fears and disturbing thoughts brought to life live on stage in this horrifying, twisted and thrilling tale. Please note the show is unsuitable for those under the age of 15. Those with a nervous disposition are advised to think very seriously before booking tickets Various times and prices; Theatre Royal;

ABOVE: Enjoy the blues with Will Johns LEFT: Mariner is a multi-media experience including Zubenelgenubi – The Price to be Paid, a film by Serena Korda BELOW: Rapunzel captures everyone's hearts


16–19 January

SNOW WHITE: A PANTOMIME Bath drama presents the classic tale of the conniving step mother, beautiful princess, poisoned apple and the seven small friends that step in to help her. Laugh, singalong and prepare for some audience participation (“she’s behind you!” etc) in this uplifting tale of good winning over evil. 2pm and 7.30pm; £14 (£12 conc, £8 children); Rondo Theatre;

18–19 January

MISCHIEF & MYSTERY IN MOOMIN VALLEY Spend a year in the charming world of Moomin Valley. This gentle tale about Moomintroll and his best friend nufkin s ad entures and their inevitable separation when nufkin lea es for the winter looks at the value of friendship, the pain of missing people and the acceptance of difference. 11.30am and 3pm; prices vary; the egg;

22 January

MAX & IVAN: COMMITMENT The unbelievable true story of the time Max took his best man duties to the extreme to give Ivan, the groom, the best weekend of his entire life. It’s

a show about failure, dreaming big and growing up sort of anyway. Doors 7.30pm, show starts 8pm; Komedia;

22 January

SLAPSTICK ROLLING FUNDER mid alili on ichardson Count Arthur Strong, Lucy Porter and Angela Barnes are all heading to Bath for one night only. The giants of British comedy are performing to help raise funds for Slapstick, the UK’s biggest celebration of silent screen and classic comedy, to start hosting events in Bath. Doors 7pm, show starts 7.30pm; prices vary; The Forum;

31 January – 1 February

FROM SHAKESPEARE WITH LOVE If there’s one universal theme in all of Shakespeare’s works, it’s love. In this intimate, sweet and truthful two-hander play, actors explore the theme of love and relationships in all their many forms through scenes from the works, sonnets, personal anecdotes and live music. Various times and prices, Mission Theatre; ath e rg k

MUSIC 10 January

DAMIEN WILSON AND ADAM WAKEMAN A popular touring duo of the men-with-guitars genre, in this fun night, the pair will play a mix of their solo work as well as a few hits from their oint al ums. oth have extensive touring and musical experience behind them, so you can e confident that they know how to put on a show. Doors 7.30pm, show starts 8pm; £16; Chapel Arts;

11 January

EDD DONOVAN AND THE WANDERING MOLES Blowing through Bath in support of his new album, Guardians of Our Time you ll find dd s latest offering a distinct departure from his previous record. A folk artist to his core on the new al um dd has left behind the big band sound of his second album, Making Mountains (Vol. 1) in favour of a stripped back, self produced sound using only guitar, oice and keys and e en a couple of recordings from his iPhone. Doors 7.30pm, show starts 8pm; £12; Chapel Arts; I BATH LIFE I 37

WHAT’S ON 11 January

SÁNDOR VÉGH MEMORIAL CONCERT A night of Beethoven classics presented by IMS Prussia Cove, a charity all about music making that has a solid reputation as one of the most respected institutions in classical music. Every year the group holds a concert in honour of its founder, the Hungarian violinist Sándor Végh. 7.30pm; £20; St Swithin’s Church; ath e rg k

25 January

SON YAMBU Grab your dancing shoes for this night of Afro-Cuban music. Originating from the streets of Eastern Cuba, Son play a fusion of Spanish and African rhythms. Dedicated to keeping up the traditions of the genre, Son Yambu have been keeping Cuban music on the map since 1997. Doors 7.30pm, show starts 8pm; £17.50; hapel rts entre hapelarts rg

30 January

THE WILL JOHNS BAND One of the most distinctive British Blues performers around, Will Johns is one spellbinding live act. With quite the A-list pedigree – his dad is legendary LA record producer Andy Johns and his uncle is Eric Clapton – Will has been touring the world for the last 15 years. p e ia k e ia k


Until 5 January

Until 5 January

GLOW-IN-THE-DARK MINI GOLF After dark the mini golf course in Royal Victoria Park will burst into magical light. Play a round in this atmospheric winter wonderland with glow in the dark golf balls. n n, p a lt , hil yal i t ria ark ath ni e

14 January

INSTAGRAM MASTERCLASS Food photographer and Instagrammer extraordinaire Matt Inwood is teaching aspiring snappers how to take those notoriously tricky to achieve food snaps. In this four-hour workshop you’ll learn how to get the most from the gram find your own style, tips to get the perfect snack shot and how to edit your pics to perfection. a p reat lteney attin

13 January

BATH OCEAN PLASTIC DAY Emily Penn, the mastermind behind the eXXpedition Roundthe-World all-female voyage in search of solutions to the ocean plastic crisis will be joined by speakers from City to Sea and Naturebeads to talk about the state of our oceans. p e ia k e ia k

13 January

CHRISTMAS AT DYRHAM Get out of the hustle and bustle of the busy city centre with a calming walking trail for the kids that encourages them to find the eauty in the winter season. If you’re feeling left out, there’s a poetry trail for adults too. n n, a p h se pening ti es an ary he k e site f r re etails n r al a issi n applies yrha ark nati naltr st rg k

ARMY AND SOCIETY IN 18TH CENTURY BATH David Symington – otherwise known as the smiling doorman at No. 1 Royal Crescent – is giving a lecture on 18th century Bath. A retired solider himself, David will narrate the impact the army's comings and goings had on our city’s domestic life. rs p , talk starts p isit rs e ers an st ents ath yal iterary an ientifi nstit ti n rlsi rg


1 February

Until 5 January

BATH ON ICE It’s time to pull on your skates and throw caution to the wind for a fun time out on the ice. It’s a learn by falling kind of fun. a p eek ays, a p eeken s a lt , hil n er yal i t ria ark ath ni e


MET OPERA LIVE: PORGY AND BESS One of the greatest American operas of the 20th century and the final work of eorge ershwin rgy an ess tells the story of atfish ow a i rant setting of music, dancing, emotion and heartbreak. p The ittle Theatre pi t reh ses


ABOVE: James Rowland will perform three of his shows in January LEFT: A play exploring the theme of love in all Shakespeare's plays, this month at Mission Theatre BELOW: Omid Djalili raising laughs for money



BEST IN CLASS If you want this year to be all about expanding your world, skilling up, getting creative or simply having a bit of fun, take a peek and get inspired by these Bath-based courses and workshops...


ew Year’s resolutions should be all about doing stuff that makes you happy. With that in mind, you can’t go wrong with taking up a hobby, or learning a skill. It doesn’t even matter if you’re rubbish at it. It’s just about being away from work, responsibilities, and doing something that’s just for you. There are so many courses locally to opt for – from interior design workshops for aspiring designers, furniture painting for those wanting to spruce up their homes, vegan Japanese cookery courses and everything in between. Here’s a taster of what’s on offer that is sure to cheer you up this January and beyond.

The Bertinet Kitchen

Bread of heaven with Richard Bertinet

What’s happening: Famed bread magician Richard Bertinet’s cookery school has a bunch of new classes for 2020 including some new speciality baking classes: you can learn to make classic cakes, entremets or artisan doughnuts. There’s also an English baking class with Richard Bertinet himself plus skills classes including knife skills and saucing. If there is something you are keen to learn and you have a group of friends or colleagues who are interested, they also run bespoke classes for groups of more than eight. Anything a bit different: “We have a fabulous vegan Japanese class coming up in March with Tim Anderson (Masterchef winner and Chef Patron of London’s Nambam restaurant) and we will be launching a new class with Helen Goh from Ottolenghi in the near future,” says director Jo Bertinet. Upskilling: They are best known for their baking but equally you can learn how to cook a variety of cuisines, how to joint a chicken or fillet a fish or how to season correctly. What’s the vibe: “Relaxed, friendly and collaborative,” says Jo. “We I BATH LIFE I 41


firmly elie e in people working and ha ing fun together ut you will definitely learn a huge amount.” Upcoming dates: There are 13 courses in January, including a Michelin Starred Masterclass from The Olive Tree’s Chris Cleghorn on 11 January and a Pastry Masterclass with Richard Bertinet on 23 January. Starting prices: Classes are from £185, Richard Bertinet’s workshops are £215. The Bertinet Kitchen, 12 St Andrews Terrace;

Demuths Cookery School What’s it all about: The cookery school

offers healthy plant ased cookery courses – great for anyone thinking of giving Veganuary a go. “We are probably most excited about Curry Club – students can spend Friday nights cooking curries inspired y different countries from all around the world,” says manager Georgia Barton. Upskilling: There is a good mixture of hands-on demonstrations and they always include knife skills. Upcoming dates: Lots throughout January ABOVE: Lydia Downey is a tutor at Demuths and specialises in World cooking;

LEFT: Vanessa Sayce from The Marmalade House is the expert in furniture painting

and beyond with an Ethiopian Cookery Class on19 January and a Mezze Evening Workshop on 29 January. Starting prices: From £75. Demuths Cookery School, 6 Terrace Walk;

The Marmalade House

What’s it all about: The interiors company run a whole range of

furniture painting and interior design courses. A popular one is the Colour your Home course – a full day of deconstructing colour, learning about how it works, painting room sets and creating mood boards. Owner Vanessa Sayce has also recently launched a new d anced ourse in urniture ainting which kicks off this arch. e will e teaching students how to create a mar le effect on furniture, age beautiful pieces with washing colours and adding a ‘faded grandeur’, how to create a rust-look and use a new product called saltwash, which adds texture and rusticity,” says Vanessa. “This new course will be hands-on, working on a small piece of furniture to take away, and teaching how to bespoke a piece of work.” Anything a bit different: When you go on your course, expect farmhouse lunches, which consist of locally-sourced, home-cooked food with a range of salads artisan reads and ucks fizz to en oy. Upskilling: “We teach colour, design, styling, and mood-boarding and on our furniture days, we teach how to use chalkpaint, distressing and ageing, how to gild, add crackle-glazes, decoupage, layering colours the Scandinavian way, free-hand stenciling and much more,” says Vanessa. e gi e our students the confidence to go off and start their own work and the tools to start to create their own style and designs.” What’s the vibe: “We have trained over 1000 people now, and can honestly say we ha e en oyed e ery course as much as our students have,” says Vanessa. “We love what we do! We have had many funny experiences, from teaching a cast on a day away from filming a poor man who fell asleep right in the middle of the day may e it was the ucks fizz and


Get happy with the colours at The Marmalade House I BATH LIFE I 43

COURSES AND CLASSES a hen party that still went ahead despite the ride reaking off her wedding. Each course day brings surprises and a lot of fun.” Upcoming dates: Colour your Home (interior design day) courses are on 31 January, 28 February and 27 March; How to Paint Furniture courses are on 10 January, 14 February and13 March. Starting prices: £145. The Marmalade House, Roundhill Farmhouse, Kelston;

The Art Cohort

What it’s all about: The Art Cohort is an arts space, gallery, arts

centre and all-round community hub. The gang here are all about creating a supporting space to help people learn new skills and techniques through creative practice. What can you do there: A lot. Classes for adults include painting, sculpture, ceramics, embroidery, crochet classes and lots more. For children there is a whole range of pre-school, after school arts and crafts and gardening classes, including clay bobble heads workshop and make your own mug and vase classes. Upcoming dates: They’ve got a Yoga, Mindful Making and Brunch event once a month; a Chinese Character Workshop on 25 January with Wen-His Harman celebrating the lunar new year; and a Up your Instagram game workshop with SomeComm on 6 March. What’s the vibe: “We’re a friendly, social crowd at The Art Cohort and we foster a social side to our classes, particularly in our regular weekly classes,” says owner Kat Dawe Schmeisser. Starting prices: £3. The Art Cohort, Chelsea Road;

British Design Academy

What’s happening: Whether you’re just looking for a creative outlet,

or the chance to hone your design skills to launch a new career, the BDA has a whole host of masterclasses – all about design. This January, they launch their new series of one-day interiors workshops for 2020. Expect relaxed, hands-on sessions which will suit anyone interested in learning about interior design. All the tutors are industry professionals, so they practice what they preach.

ABOVE: Getting messy at The Art Cohort;

LEFT: Hone your design skills at the British Design Academy

More detail please: There’s an Interiors Taster Day which is an introduction to the asics of interior design using space effecti ely working with colour learning a out different styles and creating inspirational moodboards. Also happening are weekender courses specialising in Georgian style and design, and three and six-month general certificate and diploma courses in interior design. Who would the course be good for: Homeowners, hobbyists, smallscale property developers and professionals. Some people are working on a project and use the sessions as a way to sense-check their designs; others want to learn insider tips and join the network. Upcoming dates: The one-day Interiors Taster Day is on 18 January. Starting prices: From £120. British Design Company, various locations around Bath;

Julia Davey

In a nutshell: Julia makes and sells tableware, ceramics and accessories

from her shop in Bear Flat – everything from mugs to toasters, tea towels to egg cups and all in her signature collections, including ‘Somerset Meadow’ and ‘In the Woodland’. Alongside this Julia runs arts and crafts workshops, where classes are small and there’s an abundance of cup cakes. What you can do there: eedlepunch paper owers rush lettering paper cutting, loom weaving, professional biscuit decorating and more.


TOP: Deep in concentration at a Julia Davey course; MIDDLE: Make a beautiful lampshade at The Makery; BOTTOM: Fancy crafting an owl canvas bag at The Makery

Anything a bit different?

e try and offer unusual crafts and techni ues including early in the new year paper mar ling which is a wonderful world of colour and pattern or needle punch run y our tutor who recently tra elled to merica to ecome certified y the my ford needle punch school says ulia a ey. Upcoming dates: nes coming up include the eedle unch eginners workshop on anuary and the ar ling orkshop on e ruary. Starting prices: . Julia Davey, 20 Wellsway, Bath;

The Makery

What’s it all about: ancy learning how to make a lampshade or a

cushion o le hat a eeswa wrap or a plant hanger he akery run craft workshops and da le in e erything from calligraphy to curtain making and cater for kids adults and hen parties. What’s coming up: n anuary they are introducing a new class an ntroduction to ricut raft orkshop where you ll e creating your own designs to personalise whate er you like using inyl and iron on inyl whether it s a ag sweatshirt or water ottle. Upcoming dates: ots a couple in the ne t few weeks are the make a eeswa rap orkshop on anuary and ake your own oman linds course on anuary. Starting prices: . I BATH LIFE I 45

Award-winning interiors courses Vouchers are available for our full day lifestyle courses



1917, Little Women and Jojo Rabbit

Movie musts

The new year kicks off with an eclectic bunch of films, as an adaptation of Little Women, a World War I epic and a comedy about Hitler Youth come to The Little Theatre


appy New Year! We have a fantastic range of films to start the year off right. here s a charming comedy a out the itler outh trust me it s not what you think a terrific remake of a classic and harrowing tale from . ll three of these films are an a solute must see and a real treat to start the new decade. rom writer director aika aititi Thor: Ragnarok Hunt For The Wilderpeople comes his latest creation that follows his signature wit Jojo Rabbit. n the later days of the econd orld ar a lonely erman oy o o oman ri n a is disco ers that his mother carlett ohansson is hiding a young ewish girl homasi c enzie in the attic. o o whose imaginary friend is none other than dolf itler aika aititi must confront the nationalism he has so lindly followed. his pro ocati e anti hate satire has drawn a lot of attention already at s film festi als eing one of the most talked a out films drawing a huge amount of praise ut also some negati ity regarding the su ect matter of the film. he film rilliantly handles the issues with great wit ut also eing serious where needed. aititi s uni ue style somehow fits this strange concept which allows for a great deal of laughs whilst also not forgetting the seriousness of the matter. Jojo Rabbit is certainly not the first to satirize itler and the azi egime following in the footsteps of harlie haplin s drama comedy The Great Dictator and fellow drama comedy and scar inner Life is Beautiful. t won t e the last either ut it certainly does it well. fter her solo directing de ut smash hit

Lady Bird reta erwig is ack with a smart sharp retelling of the ouisa ay lcott classic no el Little Women. he elo ed story of four young women coming of age after the merican i il ar in erwig s signature style is an a solute delight to watch on the ig screen.

“This provocative anti-hate satire has drawn a lot of attention already at s fil festi als he four young women all ha e ery different personalities with different iews on life yet compliment each other wonderfully. o aorise onan is headstrong and uncon entional eg mma atson is incredi ly sensi le eth liza canlon is innocent and unfortunately sickly and my lorence ugh is passionately artistic. n this eguiling story all four go through the highs and lows of e ploring the adult world continuing to stand y each other no matter what making you fall in lo e with all four of them. ith great moments of tension laughter and romance this story is the complete package. imothee halamet and eryl treep also oin this already stellar cast oth deli ering fantastically humorous performances. t s a mar ellous film filled with wit and charm ut also teaching the important lesson that not e eryone s life s plan is the

same and that should e respected. s one of many adaptations of the classic no el it is already eing hailed as one of the est. f you ha en t read the no el or seen any adaptations won t spoil it for you ut know that this is a smart delightful film which will certainly keep you entertained. he new orld ar epic 1917 is a tense and powerful story. irector am endes Skyfall American Beauty has managed to shoot and edit the film to make it feel like one continuous two hour shot. t s an incredi ly impressi e technological feat truly making you feel like you are there alongside the characters. n rance two young ritish soldiers chofield eorge ac ay and lake ean harles hapman are gi en a mission that seems almost impossi le. n a dangerous race against time the pair must cross enemy lines to deli er a message that will stop hundreds of soldiers from walking into a deadly trap. ith the edit carefully e ecuted to make it feel like you are watching in real time alongside the meticulous performances from the leads and the supporting cast olin irth enedict um er atch ndrew cott this is a film that will stay with you. t captures the true emotional state of the war in a way no other war time film has managed to do and it is possi ly am endes est feature yet. Sophie-Claire McLeod is duty and marketing manager at The Little Theatre, 1–2 St Michael’s Place; 01225 466822; I BATH LIFE I 49










9 8 Wa l c o t S t r e e t , B a t h B A 1 5 B G Te l 0 1 2 2 5 4 6 9 2 4 0 E m a i l c o n t a c t @ h a l i d e n . c o m w w w. h a l i d e n . c o m



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


Cracking classics January is the perfect time to hunker down with a literary favourite. Nic recommends a mix of the greats from around the globe

“The classics resolution equivalent of going cold turkey is to leap in to one of those massive classics”


rarely talk about classics in this column. It’s the same in the shop really. By their very nature, classics are books that you don’t often need a bookseller or book columnist’s help in tracking down and discovering. But Christmas and New Year are two occasions when classics do come on the recommendation radar. When the frosts form outside, you’re more likely to see avid readers hunkering down and hibernating with the grand master of inclement atmosphere, Charles Dickens. There’s nothing to make you feel cosier than being safe and warm inside whilst reading about Little Nell’s torturous journey North in The Old Curiosity Shop. Then New Year arrives, bringing reading resolutions alongside abstinence and exercise. So if you’re planning on tackling a January classic, what should you reach for? Willa Cather wrote in the early part of the twentieth century and most often described the rural landscape of the Mid-West. One of her great heroines is Alexandra Bergson, the spirited and resourceful daughter of a Swedish immigrant who has moved with family and many of his countrymen to farm in Nebraska in Cather’s short novel O Pioneers! (Penguin, £7.99). Following her father’s death Alexandra takes over part of the land and acquires more from her neighbours, after they have given up on failing crops and moved on. Alexandra realises that the crops are failing due to the ineptitude of the farming (most of this newly arrived Swedish community were in different professions efore moving) and choosing crops ill-suited to the land and elements. Armed with this knowledge, Alexandra turns around the fortunes of her family and the wider-community and, as the novel leaps forward in time, she becomes a highly in uential ut kind and sympathetic land owner. And then, just when you are enjoying a novel that is essentially a social history giving a portrait of pioneer life, in the last third of the book a swift and emotional sub-plot appears and takes over. The classics resolution equivalent of going cold turkey is to leap in to one of those massive classics. I was talking to a customer the other day whose preferred genre was fast-paced crime but had decided to embark on Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov. Unsurprisingly he was soon exasperated with the dramatic change in style and speed. That doesn’t mean that some of the heftier

classics aren’t worth trying though. Take Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray (Penguin, £7.99) for example – it might run to 900 odd pages but it’s a romp of a story, thanks to its scheming and seductive anti-heroine Becky Sharp who backstabs her way up the social ladder as the Napoleonic wars rage on in the background. Sharp is fairly loathsome – entirely self-interested, money-obsessed, immoral at best – and of course that’s what makes her such a fabulous character to read about. You’ll be kept speeding through this brick of a book as you wonder whether Sharp will outwit her various suitors, supposed friends and steadily increasing range of enemies and whether she’ll ultimately get her comeuppance. Whilst we’re talking massive books, it’s also worth mentioning Alexandre Dumas. The prolific nineteenth century rench creator of The Three Musketeers knew more about penning high-octane adventure plots than most thriller novelists that have followed in his wake. Another Napoleonic novel, the swashbuckling Count of Monte Cristo (OUP, £8.99) is a cool 1300 pages in most editions and has everything you’d want in a rampaging tale of daring-do – prison escapes, epic journeys and a hero with an insatiable thirst for revenge. Finally, having urged caution against leaping into one Russian novel, it’s only fair to recommend another. If I were going to spend some January evenings in the company of a classic Russian storyteller I’d choose Nikolai Gogol – and not a novel but some of his hilarious short story satires. Collected Tales (Everyman, £12.99) is the perfect introduction to his blend of social comedy and occasional surrealism. In The Nose you’ll witness a bureaucrat’s nose departs its owner’s face and form its own rather successful identity and career. Whilst in The Story of how Ivan Ivanovich quarrelled with Ivan Nikiforovich (known in other collections as The Squabble) we watch the rigmarole of the escalating and endless quarrel between two small-town Ukrainian landowners which proves the ultimate reminder to let small disagreements lie. French, Russian, American or English – there are plenty of fun and thrilling classics out there to kick-start your year. Nic Bottomley is the general manager of Mr B’s Emporium of Reading Delights, 14/15 John Street, Bath; 01225 331155; I BATH LIFE I 51


Expect chilled, fun vibes at Bath’s new Mexican bar and restaurant By Harriet Noble


ucked away on Bartlett street is Dos Dedos, Bath’s new Mexican bar and restaurant. It opened not long ago but such is its pro imity to edia lash o ces I’ve already been there twice for a drink with colleagues. Both times have been on Friday nights and it’s been lively, fairly full, we’ve happily guzzled colourful cocktails, tasty tequilas and summery Mexican beers and enjoyed the relaxed and breezy vibes of the place. It’s funny how much you don t notice though when you re off duty . Visiting again, I’ve got my restaurant review antennae on and I notice that the whole interiors space is crafted from makeshift pieces of old wooden doors, cupboards and drawers. The whole bar and seating area, I learn, were hand uilt and put together y the co owner a id Power. In fact, nearly all of the interiors are made from refurnished bits of old furniture. For example,


the wooden shelving and walls on the left as you come in are mostly doors from the old gallery space that was here previously, while the table tops were recycled from he ommon oom which the other co owner Harry Bret runs) and everything else was bought at local antique fairs. The pair set themselves the challenge of seeing how much of the bar they could put together by being resourceful and using what was around them. hatting to arry he tells me this was not a cost saving exercise but a deliberate choice for the kind of bar they wanted it to be. The result is a small, cosy open room style ar and kitchen it s a co led together no frills d cor that sums up the pair s wishes for a ar that is chilled easy going and fun with not the faintest whiff of a generic Mexican chain. Harry and David were inspired to set up Dos Dedos when they were travelling through Central America. They loved the simplicity and warmth of the bars and


decided to set up something similar in Bath The bar is stocked, as you’d expect, with beverages from Mexico and elsewhere in Central America, with a good range – over 100 – of tequilas and mezcals. hey re keen for people to try the proper stuff not the down-in-one rubbish that some of us throw down oursel es in sticky oored nightclu s. nd there s a whole bunch of Mexican-inspired cocktails such as TCT e uila cold rew coffee tonic four different types of argaritas and three different sorts of icheleda this is like a loody ary and a unch of other classics like Daiquiri, Singapore Sling and an Old Fashioned. The simple concept of an easy-going bar carries through to the menu which is short, basic and unfussy with a handful of tacos, nachos and salady choices. My pal and opt for some nachos to start off with. hey arrive warm and crunchy and come with a good dollop of strong jalapeño topping that packs a punch the way it should do though helpfully the staff will always tell you how spicy all the different dishes are . For mains, we share some pork and chicken tacos that come in soft corn tortillas and go down a treat. This is not delicate food ut meaty cheesy fill your elly type stuff which goes down a treat. ord of warning though wouldn t ad ise eating these tacos on a first date. hey are absolutely crammed, and the soft tortillas are not quite large enough – I managed to spill half the contents on the oor and down my skirt and you ll whizz through the napkins provided mopping up guacamole from your face and hands. But that’s all part of the fun of eating this kind of Mexican street-food; it’s all hands-on, colourful and a bit messy. You don’t have to be mad about Tequila or Mexican food even to enjoy this place; it’s just a great little bar that serves up some hearty food.

“This is not delicate food but meaty, heesy, fill y r elly type st

DINING DETAILS Dos Dedos, Edgar Mews, Bartlett Street, Bath; In a nutshell A relaxed, unpretentious Mexican bar with no-frills food We ate Nachos (with melted cheddar, Monterey Jack and mozzarella cheese, jalapenos, dos dedos salsa, guacamole and sour cream); chilli chicken tacos (marinated pulled chicken tinga tacos with all the trimmings); slow roasted pork shoulder in a herb, citrus and spice seasoning with marinated cabbage tacos Drinks Tequila, mezcal, loads of cocktails, a good selection of beers and wine Prices Tortilla chips £3.50; mains £5.95-£7.95 What else? Vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free options I BATH LIFE I 53


Matt’s first menu will launch this month

Dreaming of sunnier days...


January can be a depressing month. As we make our way through the dark and rainy days we need to plan in a few treats so as not to feel too sorry for ourselves. Cue lunch at The Bath Priory on Weston Road. Take advantage of their hampagne ol oger lunch offer a four-course tasting lunch with, you guessed it, a glass of Champagne Pol Roger, all for £40 per person. he offer is a aila le for pre ooked lunch Monday-Saturday until13 February, subject to availability. Vegetarian and vegan alternatives are available, but please mention when booking. For more:

FRESH MEAT Wild times are ahead at No.15 Great Pulteney as they welcome their new head chef, Matt Gillard. An enthusiastic forager and fly fisher, Matt’s dishes are inspired by what grows nearby – Warminster, Shearwater, Sally in the Wood and Monmouthshire are his regular haunts – and his menu will feature such options as roasted cauliflower, pine nut puree, ‘Jack-by-the-hedge’ oil and brassica pesto; Wiltshire venison with fermented beetroot, local mushroom, cep powder and winter berry jus; and preserved pears, milk sorbet, thyme yoghurt and oat crumble. Yum! In line with Matt’s passion for the subject, the theme of the March Supper Club at No.15 will be foraged food. Check the website for more details.

For more:


A good lunch cures all ills

Get ready for summer 2020

We all breathed a hearty sigh of relief here in Bath Life Towers when we learned that yes, Pub in the Park will be returning to Royal Victoria Park this year. Tom Kerridge’s music-fooddrink extravaganza will take place on 19-21 June to celebrate local talent – and present some of the biggest names in food and music. “I’ve had a sneak peek at the lineup for 2020, and wow, it looks good; tasty food, more amazing chefs and awesome musicians all in your local park,” says Tom. Keep tuned for more news. For more: I BATH LIFE I 55


Start the New Year as you mean to continue: with high quality dining, every night LEFTOVERS NOODLE BROTH From Castle Farm, Midford Serves 6

Use up any leftovers with this delicious dish. The ingredients list is more of a guide than a must-have – simply use what you’ve got in the cupboards. After all that pre-Christmas food hoarding it’s sure to be plenty. Preparation time: Approximately 15 minutes Cooking time: Approximately 1-2 hours for the stock Ingredients

Left over roasted meat (turkey, chicken, duck, goose, guinea fowl, beef, pork, venison…you get the idea, any meat will do) 1 small onion 1 small knob of ginger 1 whole bulb or garlic (yes that’s a lot but your body probably needs it) 1 or 2 chillies (adapt to how spicy you like it) 200g mushrooms 300g rice noodles (soaked in cold water for 10 mins)


Soya Sesame oil Sea salt Cracked black pepper


Slices of meat, greens, chilli, herbs, ginger

Method Stock: (you can do this in advance)

Start by making a stock, using leftover roast. Place the meat in a large saucepan and fill it up with water. Simmer gently for 1-2 hours. Check the pan regularly and fill up with water if needed. (Different cuts of meat will have a different intensity of flavour) The stock is ready when the liquid is light brown and has taken on a nice meaty flavour. Strain through a sieve and keep it for the noodle broth. Skim off any fat that has settled on the surface. Keep the fat to drizzle on the finished broth for that ‘Asian roadside flavour’.

Noodle Broth:

• Slice the onions, chop the garlic, ginger, chillies and mushrooms. Heat a saucepan/ wok with a little oil. Add the vegetables and fry until they are golden brown. • Add the meat stock and simmer for 15 mins (timings depend on how thick your stock is, so adjust as appropriate). • Season with soya, sesame oil, sea salt and black pepper. You want the flavour to be warming, flavoursome, a little spicy and nourishing. • Once the flavour is good, add the soaked rice noodles to the broth. Now is the time to be thrifty and creative. Throw in any other bits and bobs you have lying around – sprout tops, spring onions, greens, herbs, stuffing balls, you get the idea. • Dish up and garnish with a few slices of ginger, chilli, greens, herbs, a few bits of meat and a little drizzle of the fat from making the stock. For more:


PEAR, PARSNIP & RED CABBAGE From Riverford Organic Farmers Serves 6 as a side A selection of raw winter veg. Treat it as a slaw over the festive period, serve it as a salad alongside cold cuts, or extend into a quick lunch by adding some cooked lentils and toasted nuts to the mix. If you put it anywhere near roast beef, then consider adding a dab of horseradish.

1 parsnip, cut into fine matchsticks ½ red onion, finely sliced 1 tsp poppy seeds pinch of allspice 2 tbsp olive oil small bunch of parsley, roughly chopped



¼ red cabbage, very finely shredded handful of radicchio or chicory leaves, roughly torn 1 beetroot, peeled and cut into fine matchsticks 2 tbsp red wine vinegar ½ tbsp Dijon mustard salt and pepper 1 pear, finely sliced or peeled

• Prepare the cabbage, radicchio and beetroot. Mix them together in a large bowl with the vinegar, mustard and a good pinch of salt. Leave for 10 mins while you prepare everything else. • Add everything else and mix thoroughly. Season with salt and pepper to taste. For more: I BATH LIFE I 57

RECIPE THE IVY VEGETARIAN SHEPHERD’S PIE From The Ivy Bath Brasserie Serves 6 Hearty and filling, this vegetarian alternative to a carnivorous staple is just the ticket for these chilly evenings. Ingredients

80g of chestnut mushrooms cooked 80g of King oyster mushrooms cooked 440g chickpeas 250g deep-fried aubergine 250g 1cm Piquillo red pepper strips 30g chopped coriander 180g cooked red quinoa 4g of table salt Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the topping

1kg potatoes 100g unsalted butter 25g cream Salt and white pepper


Hot gravy

50g vegan gravy 1g chopped parsley 5g cooked red quinoa


• Preheat the oven to 180°C / gas mark 4. • Place 80g of sliced chestnut mushrooms, 1 slice of a King oyster mushroom stem and all the sliced King oyster mushroom hats into a large pan with oil and salt and cook down. Once cooked, drain the mushrooms in a colander. Meanwhile, dice 250g of aubergine into 2cm chunks and cook until golden brown at 180ºC. Place the aubergines into a bowl with the chickpeas, cooked mushrooms, red pepper strips and cooked red quinoa. Add the chopped coriander and mix well, this is now ready for building.

• Peel and cut the potatoes into even-sized pieces. Cook in boiling salted water for around 15 minutes until soft; then drain and return to the pan over a gentle heat to remove any excess moisture. Using an old-fashioned masher or a potato ricer, thoroughly mash the potatoes and mix them with the butter and cream and season to taste. • To assemble and serve, place the mushroom mixture into an oven proof dish. Top with mashed potato (you can pipe this if you have the time), put into the oven and bake for around 30 minutes until a lovely golden colour, once cooked garnish with the chopped parsley. • Finally, add the 5g of cooked red quinoa to the hot vegan gravy and use as you wish. For more:

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THE RIGHT TO SHOES Peacocking – the ostentatious dress or behaviour employed to attract an admirer – doesn’t have to mean being crass or showy. No, the best kind of peacocking is one that demands attention but with an air of subtlety, a nuance of sophistication, a suggestion of thrills. Case in point: these beautiful olive green charmers. These Sandown shoes come with dainty stitching, bold shoelaces and a caramel rubber studded sole. Onlookers will purr in admiration. These Sandown shoes are £195 and can be purchased from Loake Shoemakers, 15 Green Street, Bath; I BATH LIFE I 61

TRACK BLUE , £1,350 luey dreams must e made of this. rtist ulia ilson says he paintings are a reaction to my surroundings a spontaneous re working of memory and history things seen past and present. From Modern Art Buyer,

SMALL ZABIYA DECORATIVE VASE, £25 and made from porcelain we re seeing this perched on your rench dresser. From Oka, 26-27 Milsom Street;


Pantone’s colour of 2020 is Classic Blue – here’s a selection of local finds all in that deep rich hue

BLUE CUSHION, £39 tonewashed this cushion has a used look and sports fa contrast edging. reat for sprucing up a room and hugging. From The Salcombe Trading Company, 76 Walcot Street;


KAWECO SPORT, FOUNTAIN PEN, £23 ow do you make people think you are a person with a certain air of gra itas sing a eautiful fountain pen is a good place to start. he lightweight pen is a real eauty with its classic design features including the octagonal screw close cap. ose the ic and go with this. From Meticulous Ink, 134 Walcot Street;

ALCEE SAPPHIRE VELVET ARMCHAIR, £695 n ia ly sleek arms and legs keep this mid century inspired chair sitting upright while the lu urious el et upholstery does all the talking. From Graham & Green, 92 Walcot Street;

ED’S CHOICE SWIM-IN-POOL, £495 This piece by Richard Heeps has got a splash of vintage, a wave of nostalgia and clear blue skies that will warm up any room. From Art Salon, 21 Broad Street,

TANIMBAR TECH POUCH, £14.99 The Tanimbar Tech Pouch from vegan friendly brand Goodeehoo, is a sleek design which can hold a range of tablets and will help to keep you organised. It looks pretty cool too. From Vinegar Hill, 16 Milsom Street;

CHILLY’S BOTTLE, 500ML £20 Use when wearing those blue dungarees for a full-on matchy-matchy blue ensemble. Accessorising is all. From Rossiters of Bath, 38-41 Broad Street; LURDES BERGADA DUNGAREES, £178, AND LURDES BERGADA CROPPED HOODED JACKET £169 This strong look says utilitarian-style boiler man/woman with artistic sensibilities and a devil-may-care attitude. Rock it. From Blue Women Clothing, The Loft, 1-2, Bartlett Street;

BESPOKE BUNCH OF FLOWERS, POA The team at Mr Florista can make up a bunch in these beautiful bluey shades, plus all their prices include delivery and a donation to their ‘Random Acts of Flowers’ – whereby a percentage of what you pay goes towards funding bunches for people who really deserve them. r r l rista r rista I BATH LIFE I 63

Aquae Sulis Dental is a private Dental Practice in Bath. Highly experienced in a wide range of dental procedures including dental implants, we offer a service that puts you and your needs first. In addition to dentistry, we also provide our clients with a full portfolio of facial aesthetics treatments. The Aquae Sulis team is led by Ian Bellamy, who many of our patients’ credit with breaking a lifetime of dental-phobia. His patient-centric style has won the loyalty of patients in Bath for two decades and the team he has built here shares the same passion for making a difference through gentle dentistry. Treatments include:

z z z z z z z z z

Dental Implants Teeth Whitening Veneers, Crown and Bridges General Dentistry Sedation for Anxious Patients Facial Aesthetics Anti-wrinkle Therapy Dermal Fillers Snoring & Sleep Apnoea

Aquae Sulis Dental, Station Court, Ashley Avenue, Bath BA1 3DS Free parking outside the practice

01225 339 767 | |


AS GOOD AS NEW Sleep retreats, hot yoga, a nourishing foodie cleanse and a load of heavenly spas – discover the local places that will pick you up this January and leave you revitalised and raring to go By Harriet Noble

You may never get out of Lucknam Park’s outdoor hydrotherapy pool I BATH LIFE I 65

“Hot yoga also tackles internal stresses, leading to a deeper sense of peace” SLEEP RETREAT AT LUCKNAM PARK

In a nutshell: A weekend designed to help

you re-discover how to sleep well. The gang here will be helping to balance your energy levels and to restore equilibrium of mind and body through guided meditation and hypnotherapy. More details please: Over the weekend you’ll be partaking in yoga sessions, a therapeutic session at the equestrian centre, sleep meditation sessions, forest walks, a sound healing gong bath and breath workshop plus enjoying three-course meals at their Michelin star Brasserie restaurant. Anything unusual: Yes, you’ll be learning how to connect with a horse!


The therapeutic sessions at the equestrian centre are run by Dawn Cameron who has been managing the Lucknam Park Equestrian Centre for over 20 years. Guests will be working in the round pen using the horse’s natural instincts and methods of communication to bond with the four-legged creature. Perfect for: Someone who wants to improve their sleep, likes horses and fancies staying in a country house with a spa and a top-notch restaurant. When: 17-19 January 2020. Starting price: From £1,040 per person for two-night stay. Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa, Colerne, Chippenham, Wiltshire;


Yes, the pool at Lucknam Park has a roaring fire; RIGHT: Become a horse whisperer at Lucknam Park; BELOW: Diane Lee from Bath Yoga Studio having a stretch


In a nutshell: Bath Yoga Studio aims to

offer classes which help you mo e sweat and tone your ody whilst also tackling internal stresses leading to a deeper sense of peace and happiness. e are ath s only ot oga tudio and we offer a ariety of classes oth with and without heat more ang to soothing restorati e in says iane ee head yogi at ath oga tudio. What’s coming up: here s the in oga hi ernation on anuary which helps you to draw inwards to recoup lost energy and pass the winter y withdrawing into a deep in oga practice. e t up is a rana riya

earning to reathe oga orkshop on anuary. Perfect for: nyone who wants to reconnect with their ody. Starting price: £15

Bath Yoga Studio, Norfolk Buildings, James Street West;


In a nutshell: he itchari leanse offers regular cleanses that increase the digesti e fire inside us and righten up the ody gi ing us ack our spark with a clarity of mind and a passion for life says co owner annah arshall. ll the recipes are created in the kitchen of t. ames s afe eli y professional chef im oniotes and annah

who is an yur edic lifestyle consultant. hey are oth passionate a out pro iding delicious healthy healing yur edic in uenced food locally. he pair offer talks cleanses support and ad ice recipes food plans and oga classes all centered on complete digestion and perfect health. What’s on the menu: heir signature dish is itchari an yur edic recipe similar to dhal that cleanses through the tract stimulating the digesti e fire and encouraging complete digestion assimilation a sorption and elimination. What’s the vibe: ur cleanses are kind and uni ue says annah. hey are fresh nourishing gentle egan and a aila le locally in ath. he itchari I BATH LIFE I 67



Healing food here we come at The Kitchari Cleanse;

ABOVE: Float away at Thermae Bath Spa; RIGHT: Hannah


Marshall is all about fresh and nourishing nosh

Cleanse resonates with the desire in every individual to live well and enjoy the best possible health.” Upcoming dates: You can cleanse with Hannah, Kim and the gang every Tuesday on their one-day weekly cleanse or try one of their three-day seasonal cleanses between 6-8 January; further courses in April 2020. Perfect for: Anyone who wants to eat well and feel good. Starting price: One-day cleanse is £15, three-day cleanse is £45. The Kichari Cleanse, St. James’s Cafe Deli, 5-6 St James’s Street


In a nutshell: The Soul Spa is a new space in town providing all manner of meditations in their wonderfully calm zen den. “The room is full of cushions and mats, and created to resemble the inside of a yurt, with coloured back-lit canvas walls, so you feel like you have been transported far away from the city,” says owner Madeline Blackburn. You can also get treatments here, from holistic massages, to acupuncture, energy healing and many more courses and workshops. What’s coming up: First up is a new group starting for women who are expecting babies called Antenatal iRest®, for women to connect with their unborn child and learn how to relax through the whole process and there’s also a special meditation group for the over 55’s. Anything else? “Our monthly Laugher Yoga evenings will continue to get those endorphins owing something we all need a bit of in January,” says Madeline. We’re teaming up with Harrington’s Hotel to create packages for their detox January/February where visitors will be able to totally relax in a guided visualisation and then bathe in the vibrations of a delicious sound bath. Perfect for: Anyone in need of some time out to recentre. Starting price: £5 drop-in or £20 monthly membership. The Soul Spa, 2 Hetling Court;


“Our monthly laughter yoga evenings will continue to get th se en rphins ing In a nutshell: Underground and housed within

exposed stone vaults, this gem of a spa features four distinctive treatment rooms, a large cedar wood hot tub, a barrel-shaped sauna and a separate steam room. Each treatment room’s name hints at its distinctive decorative style – the Sock Room (where you ll find handmade socks apestry oom Coral Room and the Pottery Room. Treatments to try in January: he alancing ack reatment which focuses on stress in the back and shoulders. Ancient marma therapy and warm herbal poultices are massaged into the back of the body, while sound healing and chakra balancing takes away tension, releases negativity and brings your body back to a state of e uili rium. he longer treatment includes a massage to the front of the body as well as a scalp massage. Anything else? Half-day spa packages are a good choice; you arrive at 1.30pm and enjoy use of the hot-tub and sauna alongside a treatment of your choice (a back, foot and scalp massage; an energising and detoxifying body scrub or a glowing radiance organic facial de-stress massage and facial efore rounding off with nglish afternoon tea. Starting prices: For non-residents, use of the spa starts at £20 if booking a treatment or £35 if not. Perfect for: hose who want chill out time and massages in a cool uirky and central location. No.15 Great Pulteney, 15 Great Pulteney Street;

Get zen at the den in The Soul Spa; ABOVE: Wine cellar meets sexy spa at No.15




In a nutshell: Sporting the UK’s only

natural thermal waters and a showstopper of a rooftop pool hermae ath pa also offers the indoor miner a ath wellness suite (two aromatic steam rooms, infra-red room, celestial relaxation suite, ice chamber and e perience showers no less prings restaurant and an impressive 27 treatment rooms rade listed ot ath and rade listed open air ross ath. Treatments to try this January: Why not go for the perfect pick me up treatment an invigorating body scrub that lifts away dead skin,

followed by an energising mud wrap, a relaxing head massage finishing up when the therapist will layer lock the goodness of the rich essential oils into your skin so that it continues to absorb and revive after the treatment. Perfect for: hose who want to rela with a partner or friend and take in some great views of ath s rooftops. Starting price: £36 for entry to the main hermae ath pa. hermae will e closed for planned maintenance from anuary . Thermae Bath Spa, The Hetling Pump Room, Hot Bath Street; I BATH LIFE I 69

THE SPA AND BATH HOUSE AT THE ROYAL CRESCENT HOTEL & SPA In a nutshell: Could this joint win best

looking swimming pool in Bath? Possibly so, it’s a beautiful 12-metre relaxation pool, with deep blue tiles and tall chapel-esque windows set in the limestone walls. Generic it is not. rom there you can oat etween the itality pool, herbal steam inhalation room, and imalayan salt infused sauna finishing your day with a luxurious treatment. Anything else? In warmer months, you can sit outside in the Taittinger Spa Garden and enjoy the birdsong while you sip Champagne in your uffy dressing gown. ounds good to us. Perfect for: Anyone who wants a spa with a bit of character, with beautiful gardens to boot. The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa, 16 Royal Crescent;


In a nutshell: Set within the beautiful Relais &

Chateaux property of The Bath Priory hotel are four luxurious treatment rooms including a dual treatment suite, a relaxation lounge, indoor pool, pool-side sauna, elliptical steam pod and shower. Treatments include Swedish e eurage hinese acupressure and alinese massage techniques, to stimulate circulation, ease tension and relie e stress. Treatments to try this January: The Bath riory is hosting a inter pa ay a aila le to book between Sunday-Friday until 28 e ruary offering guests a sumptuous two-course lunch with a glass of Champagne in The Pantry and a 60-minute treatment, followed by time to relax and unwind with full use of the spa facilities (Prices start from £125 per person). Perfect for: those wanting to rest and indulge in a rela ing ha en away from the ustling city with scents from ro ence per ading. Starting price: Spa day prices start from £150, treatments start from £60. The Bath Priory, Weston Road;


MAIN IMAGE: Go for a dip at The Royal Crescent;

INSET: Lavender scents await at The Bath Priory


“ an at et een the itality p l an the her al stea inhalati n r I BATH LIFE I 71

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Skin deep Confused about what retinoids are and what they do? Ané has the answers... RETINOID VS RETINOL: What’s the difference? And how to choose the right one for your skin

Retinoids have long been considered an anti-aging powerhouse and one of the most effecti e topical treatments to promote skin renewal, significantly reduce fine lines and wrinkles, fade pigmentation, smooth skin texture, improve skin elasticity, brighten skin tone and boost collagen production. But with terms like retinoids and retinol often being interchanged, how do you know the difference between them, and, most importantly, how do you choose the right one for you? Retinoid is an umbrella term for the whole family of vitamin A derivatives, including overthe-counter products containing Retinol and prescription treatments like Retin-A. Regardless of which type of retinoid you choose, the only type that our skin is able to use is called retinoic acid, the active form of Vitamin A. Retinoic acid binds to the retinoid receptors in our bodies, where it boosts cellular repair and renewal processes. This means that all other forms of retinoids have to be converted into retinoic acid before the skin is able to use it. Here is our quick guide to Retinoids and how to use them in your routine. Retinoid – the full on one Retinoids get faster results, but can potentially cause more irritation and need a prescription.

• Some of the strongest retinoids are pure retinoic acid and don’t need to go through the conversion process, which is why they are so much more potent and therefore need a prescription. • This means that retinoids can be more irritating than over-thecounter retinol and should be slowly ramped up to limit irritation. Retinol – the ‘be patient with me’ one Retinol is gentler than retinoid and can be bought over the counter. But it takes longer to reveal results.

etinol is a specific form of vitamin A that’s available in many relati ely afforda le o er the counter skincare products i.e. serums and moisturisers. No prescription required. • These gentler, over-the-counter retinoids have to be converted into retinoic acid by the enzymes in our skin before we can actually get their enefits. • Be aware: just because it’s gentler than prescription retinoids, it doesn’t mean that you won’t experience irritation. So, which one should you choose?

Most skin types can tolerate a retinol or retinoid but you have to make sure to choose the right retinol/retinoid product for you. etinoids are incredi ly effecti e topical skincare ingredients and it’s important to take your skin concern and type into consideration. Speak with a dermatologist or your facial

“Retinoids have long been considered an anti-aging powerhouse”

aesthetics expert to help you decide whether prescription retinoids or an over-the-counter retinol is a better option for you. Who can’t use these ingredients?

If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, it’s recommended to avoid using retinols and retinoids altogether. A small percentage of people are super sensitive and sometimes have a ery di cult time tolerating a retinoid.

How to use your retinol products in your skincare routine...

Whether you use retinol or prescription retinoids it’s important to carefully incorporate these ingredients into your skincare routine especially when you re a first time user. • Start slow and increase gradually. Use every third night for a couple of weeks, then every other night for another couple of weeks. If your skin is tolerating the product well it’s possible to use every day. • Start with a low percentage like 0.2 per cent if your skin is ultrasensitive or potentially 0.5 per cent for normal skin that tolerate active ingredients well. • Check instructions or get advice on how to layer your retinol/retinoid with other products in your routine

i.e. an acid based liquid exfoliant. • Use only at night. • Use a gentle skincare routine and follow with a moisturiser to help protect the skin barrier. • Always wear a broad spectrum SPF during the daytime as your skin will be more sensitive to UVA and UVB rays. What to expect...

Once you start using a retinoid or retinol product your skin may get worse before it gets better. This period is called retinisation and may in ol e peeling aking dryness and redness while your skin is adjusting to the product. This is temporary and will settle down, usually after a couple of weeks. How long to see results?

Anything between two and twelve weeks depending on the product and how well your skin responds. Some people may start to see a difference in as little as fourteen days ut don t gi e up after the first 2-3 weeks if you don’t see results. The key is consistent use.

Ané Auret is a self-confessed beauty obsessive and founder of Bath-based skincare brand Ané. Learn more at and follow her on Instagram @beauty_by_ane I BATH LIFE I 73



COSMETIC SURGEON Bath’s plastic surgery experts are here to help




MB, BCH, BAO, MFDS, MRCS, MSC, FRCS, FFD, CONSULTANT ORAL-MAXILLO-FACIAL SURGEON, THE TALBOT CLINIC Tasburgh House, Warminster Road, Bath BA2 6SH 01225 426 222; What area do you specialise in? I specialise in facial plastic surgery. I rejuvenate the aging face, brow, eyelids and neck and correct imbalances of the nose, ears, chin and cheekbones. People seeking my services typically want to reverse the signs of aging, remove contour irregularities or deformities, or make the features of the face appear natural and in proportion with one another. What is the biggest misconception about facial cosmetic surgery/procedures? The biggest misconception is the facial plastic surgery is only for the vain. Many studies have shown that patients enjoy genuine improvements in facial appearance and are more satisfied with their position in life after facial cosmetic surgery. It’s a cliché, but I often say that facial plastic surgery won’t add years to your life, but it can add life to your years. Quality of life, not vanity, is the main decision-making factor for the vast majority of patients seeking facial cosmetic surgery.

and Surgery (ECASM). I am launching a hair transplant service at the Talbot Clinic in the New Year to treat men and women suffering from hair loss. What is the most important aspect of being a doctor? Apart from having a great bedside manner, doctors should be good communicators, be organised and conscientious, make patients feel cared for, work together to support patients and most importantly advocate for their patients. What advice would you give to anybody considering cosmetic surgery? If you are considering cosmetic surgery, it is essential that you think carefully about what you want and why you want it. You need to approach all cosmetic procedures, both surgical and nonsurgical, in a safe and considered way; do not rush in, take your time – no matter how urgently you want something done.

What makes you different from other practitioners in your field? The relationship I form with my patients is comprised of shared goals, mutual understanding and, above all, trust. I am aware that I will sit in front of these patients, who will tell me their most intimate concerns. I will work with them to re-establish a sense of self and, possibly, self-esteem. I will be by their side when they are at their most vulnerable, and will be there when it’s all over. What investments has your clinic most recently made? At the Talbot Clinic, we have invested in a hair transplant service. I have trained under the care of the world-renowned Dr Christian Bisanga (Brussels, Belgium) and Danilo de Gregorio (Perugia, Italy) and am certified to perform the art of hair transplant surgery under the umbrella of the European College of Aesthetic Medicine

Serryth Colbert being awarded certification in hair transplantation from the European College of Aesthetic Medicine and Surgery (ECASM). Left to right: Christian Bisanga, Serryth Colbert and Danilo de Gregorio I BATH LIFE I 75



MEDIKAS 01179 736661/ 01458 840555; What area do you specialise in? My key passion and speciality has always been facial injectables and in particular dermal fillers. Working as a key opinion leader for various pharmaceutical companies over the last ten years and travelling the world teaching, I have gained incredible knowledge of injectable products on the market. What is the biggest misconception about cosmetic procedures? Big lips and over-inflated faces are some of the misconceptions of cosmetic procedures – and of course the inevitable pictures of those that have gone drastically wrong. At Medikas, we believe in providing a holistic approach with patient safety paramount. This is reflected in the ethos and policies within our clinic: Medical Solutions with Natural Results. What has been your proudest professional moment? My proudest moment was winning Best Aesthetic Practitioner of the Year 2017 at the prestigious Aesthetic Awards in London, beating other finalists from all over UK and Ireland. How long has your clinic been established? The exclusive Medikas brand and clinic was established 14 years ago in 2005, with our premier flagship clinic opening in Bristol in 2014. Since 2009, Medikas has won multiple awards at a national level.


AQUAE SULIS DENTAL 01225 339767; How would you best define modern dentistry? Modern dentistry is the ability to use the latest technical advances to benefit our patients – from bioactive materials that help to repair teeth to 3D imaging. These techniques allow us to make a major impact on our patients’ lives by restoring their teeth to give a natural, healthy appearance. What makes your practice different? In addition to the latest dental techniques, we put our patients’ interests first. This involves taking time to find out what our

Why are some people scared of going to the dentist? Despite the innovations in dentistry, people are still having bad experiences. This can be traced back to treatment they received as children but repeated bad experiences only negatively reinforce these fears. We want to try to end this cycle with gentle care. What else do you offer at your innovative practice? An exciting development is that we’re now offering facial aesthetic treatments with our aesthetic nurse practitioner. This fits well with some of the other treatments that we provide.


and train other practitioners to do aesthetics. I provide natural-looking results and a discreet boutique atmosphere where all procedures are performed by me.

Why do you love being a cosmetic practitioner? The work is interesting, challenging and constantly evolving. It’s really satisfying to see the happiness and confidence patients experience as a result of their treatments. I enjoy the continuity of getting to know my clients over time, and to see the often transformative effects of their results.

What services do you offer? Skincare consultations, the Hydrafacial ultimate facial, mesotherapy / skin boosters, anti-wrinkle treatments, dermal fillers, platelet rich plasma treatments for the face, scars, and for hair rejuvenation, acne treatments, micro-needling, skin peels and more.


What sets you apart from other companies? Compassion: I am gentle, listen to patients and offer a professional but relaxed environment. Experience: with 8 years as a doctor in the industry, I bring Harley Street knowledge to Bristol


patients want, to explain all of their options and to deliver care in the most considerate way.

What misconceptions to people have about injectables? That results look unnatural. If injectables are done well, you should look great… but not ‘different’.


his year rings a urry of e citing horticultural e ents. Nick Woodhouse has the low-down...


espite the garden’s relative dormancy at this time of year, there’s still plenty to be done out there. Such tasks are undeniably a touch more enjoyable on those crisper sunny days, providing a brief respite from the festive season’s call to the indoors. Perhaps however we should also learn to embrace those drizzly, wet afternoons that invite us right back to our comfy sofas they can offer the rare opportunity to read re ect and make plans. ith this in mind e picked my top fi e garden events in and around this city for the year ahead. So curl up, throw away the guilt, and enjoy.


Now into its sixth decade, the University of Bath’s Gardening Club’s programme of monthly talks sees a wealth of inspiring speakers from

movement with the landscape’s wilder nature. In the talk, Midori will discuss this unique garden movement and how her team tends to both the native and the more cultivated spaces at Tokachi. Gardening in The Millennium Forest 9 March, University of Bath Gardening Club;


As well as gaining a reputation as the go-to nursery for those searching for the extraordinary and unusual, Derry Watkin’s Special Plants ursery also offers a wide range of fascinating and practical courses for garden enthusiasts throughout the year. A highlight of its 2020 calendar is the hands-on workshop by Richard Kerwood on weaving plant supports with locally grown willow. Richard established Windrush Willow in 1998 with his wife Suzanne; since then, they’ve planted over 140 varieties across their four-acre plantation in Devon. Varieties include those that are of rarer colours, picked to promote more diverse wildlife habitats as well as producing some wonderful colours with which to weave. Weaving Willow Plant Supports 17 April, Special Plants Nursery;

“The University of Bath’s Gardening Club’s programme sees a wealth of inspiring speakers from all corners of the globe” all corners of the globe. Amongst these in 2020 is Midori Shintani, head gardener at Tokachi Millennium Forest. This bold conservation project is set in the foothills of the Hidaka mountain range on Hokkaido, the most northern of Japan’s islands. The park was originally conceived by entrepreneur Mitsushige Hayashi to offset the car on footprint of his newspaper empire and to reverse the reduction of natural habitats on the island. Midori has held the role of head gardener there since 2008, seamlessly merging the New Japanese Horticulture



Rare Plant Fairs run a series of events aimed at bringing together specialist growers and keen gardeners throughout the growing season. As well as nearby events in Wells and Quenington, they return this summer to Rodmarton Manor, near Tetbury. Built in the early twentieth century for the Biddulph family, this Arts and Crafts house was designed by architect Ernest Barnsley, who also laid out the stunning gardens there. Only genuine growers are chosen for the fairs, ensuring that plenty of advice is also on hand on the wide range of perennials, bulbs, exotics, shrubs and trees on sale. The small entrance fee is also lower than usually charged by the gardens themselves,

providing a great excuse to explore. Rare Plant Fair 21 June, Rodmarton Manor;


Curated by Helen Hughesdon, founder of the Hidden Gardens of Bath, Sculpture to Enhance a Garden brings together three sculptors, each working in different media to showcase their works in a garden setting. Once you’ve wandered round the herbaceous borders, vegetable garden, greenhouse and shade garden of this Bath in Bloom award-winning garden, there’s also the opportunity to enjoy a light lunch or cake on the terrace. Run in conjunction with the National Garden Scheme, all proceeds from the event go to Combe Down’s Peggy Dodd Centre, supporting those with memory loss and their carers. Sculpture to Enhance a Garden 4 and 5 July, Newbridge Hill;


In July The National Garden Scheme will, for the first time include the gardens of the iconic oyal Crescent Hotel. One acre of secluded, walled gardens sits unassumingly behind the hotel and is lovingly tended by head gardener John Bennett and his team. Winding paths edged with English lavender meander through manicured lawns and past century-old trees, intriguing statues, historic buildings and exquisite rose displays. National Garden Scheme 6 and 7 July, The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa;

Nick Woodhouse is the co-director of interior and garden design company Woodhouse & Law on 4 George’s Place, Bathwick Hill, Bath; 01225 428072;


Midori Shintani

Rare Plants Fair, Rodmarton Manor

Richard Kerwood, Weaving Willow Plant Supports

HAPPY TORQUAY TORQUAY… …Happy walk. Rachel Ifans uncovers a historic hotel on the English Riviera, a great base for attacking the ups and downs of the South West Coast Path



ow’s about a weekend in Torquay in a familyrun hotel on a hillside?” Sorry, what? You’ve got to admit, invites like this don’t come along all the time these days, so I pushed my editor for more (while surreptitiously checking the Apple Watch on my wrist to check that I hadn’t somehow slipped into a 1980s dystopian timeslip), hoping three questions:“Do you know me at all?”, “Have you gone insane?” and “Can you tell me more, I’m intrigued?” – would be obvious from my perky eyebrow arch. On further investigation it turned out that there is such a family-run hotel ust off the outh est oast ath in e on one that is currently scooping gongs for its restaurant in local food awards (without a Waldorf Salad in sight). We duly packed our walking boots, and on a sunny autumn day we were off to the nglish Riviera – retro seaside kitsch here we come! Orestone Manor sits overlooking the sea in Maidencombe, a small coastal village outside Torquay. My nerve faltered just once when we drew up at the entrance the pale green stucco rie y con ured up isions of a frantic Basil attacking his car with foliage and I just managed to utter a feeble “Qué?” as I trailed in after my husband marching the bags in. Thankfully, that was the last hint of Fawlty Towers we experienced during our impeccable mini-break at Orestone. The slightly dated painted side entrance that had een our first impression contrasts starkly with the glorious back of the hotel, which looks out to sea, a red-bricked, verandah-ed and bay-windowed beauty from the 1800s. Memories of the murky M5 slipped away, replaced by blue skies and palm trees and an elegant bedroom from which to view them. Orestone Manor doesn’t do pretensions – it does what it does and it does it really well. The judges of Food Drink Devon Awards recently crowned it the Best Hotel Restaurant: “It’s not a generic, ‘following the latest trend with décor, food and service restaurant’, instead Orestone Manor’s passion for what it does and how it does it, shines through everything. It should be applauded and recognised for it. The overall experience, the quality of the food, the service and selling of local provenance food and drink, is the embodiment of the Food Drink Devon awards.”

Cheers to that, we said, while supping a Salcombe Gin and a Devon Rock Lager in the hotel bar before dinner. Our spot-on three-course dinner was reasonably priced at £27. We shared a plate of meaty mussels in a moreish buttery sauce for starters, followed by belly pork with mash and perfectly-crunchy vegetables for main, with an assiette of puds to share. No boundaries were pushed, no gastro taboos exploded, but execution was top-notch and the service was attentive. In the morning, after a traditional breakfast overlooking the view, we pulled on our boots and skittered and skid on the fallen autumnal leaves carpeting the vertigo-inducing lane to Maidencombe village and the sea. That lane was a precursor of things to come and the punishing up-anddown of the outh est oast ath towards eignmouth left us sweaty and gasping for breath at points. he way was deserted we counted may e fi e other walkers during the whole day I think – and the uninterrupted views over Ness Cove, the calm blanket of blue and the innumerable other coves stacking up eastwards in the distance were only interrupted by the sight of other walkers when we climbed down to Shaldon beach, where the tiny ferry takes you over the Teign. The sun warmed our backs as we sat in the Ferry Boat Inn’s seafront garden – it’s the end of October! we marvelled, with the unattractive smugness of the traveller who’s been lucky with the weather. Shaldon village stores provided a picnic which we ate on Ness Beach having burrowed through the thrilling Smuggler’s Tunnel before walking back to base. t was a perfect day topped off with another traditional hotel dinner in the evening (me – smoked salmon followed y rump of lam him chicken li er p t and salmon for main course) while we chatted about the walk we had planned for the next day, this time in a westerly direction. That night, though, the mist rolled in, the winds blew and the rain came so we lazed around instead, and – sshhhh – we never actually made it into Torquay at all. If you fancy a coastal walking weekend, Orestone Manor is really well placed. It’s comfortable and there’s warmth to bask in, in terms of balmy temperatures, and very friendly welcome and service, and we left with a very soft spot for it and its surrounds.

“The s n ar e r a ks as we sat in the Ferry Boat Inn’s seafront garden”

Rooms from £95 (for the best price and latest deals, call the hotel directly). pe ial er re k inner f r an a iti nal per pers n, an en y fr the set pri e en , pl s pli entary ee an petit f rs k se ane, ai en e, e n T rest ne an r

rses I BATH LIFE I 81


Carry on campervanning Love the idea of camping, but not keen on tents? Stuart Shotton, founder of SUN KISSED CAMPERS has the perfect solution... You’ve moved premises recently. Where are you based now? Yes, we’ve been steadily growing our fleet of VW California Campervans for the past five years. We desperately needed larger premises, which we found on Burnett Business Park, just off the A39 near Keynsham, back in June. We received the keys just days before all seven campers were booked out for Glastonbury Festival. It was quite challenging! Our new address is Gypsy Lane, which we think is just perfect for a campervan holiday company.

bookings. June carries a whopping 20 per cent discount on hires over six days, perfect for a road trip to Scotland or across the channel into Europe. Where do your customers go? Crikey, everywhere! We advise to hold off making a decision until you know where the good weather is. Point your nose towards the sun and drive.

How’s it working out? Our customers seem to appreciate it. We’re only 10 mins drive away from our old premises behind the RUH, so still easily accessible from Bath.

Isn’t that a bit risky? Generally speaking, no, unless it’s a bank holiday weekend. Whenever we are heading somewhere new, we use an app called Campercontact to find campsites on the hoof.

Can customers leave their car with you? Yes, we have so much more room now, and not just for parking. There’s plenty of garage space to show you around your holiday campervan indoors. We’ve also got a comfortable reception, so at peak times, if you have to wait a while, there’s a sofa to relax on.

What’s the next must visit destination? Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2020 say’s its all about the Yorkshire Dales and North Yorkshire Moors this year, so I imagine we will get more than a few vans heading north. Scotland was named the destination of 2019 and inspired an exodus to the Highlands.

Business must be very seasonal. Do you close during the winter? It is very seasonal. We rely on a good Easter to kickstart the year, but no, we don’t shut down. Our modern campers are well insulated and fitted with a heater you can activate from half a mile away. There are always a few outdoors enthusiasts who like to head out to Wales with their mountain bikes or hiking boots. We also get a lot of people interested to try before they buy.

Spill the beans, where’s your favourite campsite. I fear I’m going to regret this. It’s a tiny place called Sugar Park which clings to the top of a hill overlooking Start Bay, above the old fishing village, Beesands. Passed between family members for generations, it is currently in the hands of Catherine, who has finally given it a website. Facilities are basic, no hot water, no showers, but the two toilets are always spotlessly clean and have the most incredible view. It’s just all too tempting to leave the door open while sitting on the loo!

How much does it cost to hire a campervan? October and April, a weekend starts at £285, while May to September starts at £375. Our very popular automatic campers are an extra £10 per day. When is the best time to hire? Most people think July and August. But, if you’re looking for best value, then it has to be Easter. Still in low season and 10 per cent discount for weeklong

45 Burnett Business Park, Gypsy Lane, Saltford, Bristol, BS31 2ED 01225 330106 @sunkissedvwhire I BATH LIFE I 83




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It’s the city’s business


COMMUNITY POWER Bath & West Community Energy (BWCE) have launched Community Solar 2020, a new programme that aims to install free solar panels for businesses, schools and community buildings. In the scheme, the BWCE will pay for, install and maintain the panels and sell the solar-generated electricity to the building owner at a rate 10 per cent cheaper than the grid. The BWCE is a ommunity enefit ociety so surplus income will e donated to local community projects to reduce emissions and fuel poverty – after payments have been made to community investors. “The primary mission of BWCE is not to make money but to reduce local carbon emissions,” says BWCE managing director Peter Capener. “Since our inception in 2010 we have installed solar power equivalent to the annual demand of 4,000 homes on schools, public buildings and at our ground mounted solar arrays,” “We elie e that ommunity olar offers a great opportunity for anyone concerned about the climate emergency to do something practical to reduce emissions, cut costs and increase the amount of community owned renewable energy.” Community Solar 2020 invites the whole community to get involved by looking out for potentially suitable roofs for the project. There’s a Roof Spotter’s Guide you can read on their website for more information. For more: BWCE solar panels on Lewis House, Bath

Meet like-minded local professionals at the Bath Business Expo

The greatest show Remember to register for the Bath Business Expo 2020. Bringing together the local business community, the event on 11 March will provide an invaluable opportunity to spread brand message and raise your profile among peers in the business scene in Bath and beyond. It’s a packed day, with seminars from Google’s igital arage on digital issues affecting businesses, a brand new Ask the Expert area along with networking for different sectors and the exhibitor stands. “Good content helps to draw in good attendees, appreciated by our

exhibitors who also add value to the attendees y offering them free ad ice and demonstrating how they can help – there is a new ‘Ask an Expert’ area to support these free consultations,” says James Tribe, director of Get Connected, organisers of the Expo. “We are also making each expo particularly networking-friendly, with a large number of networking events for specific sectors. The event is on 11 March; 10am-3.45pm; Assembly Rooms;



Celebrate in style

Finalists for the Bath Life Awards will be announced on 15 January. Tickets will go on sale on the same day, with priority going exclusively to those that have made the shortlist for the high-demand ceremony in February. The 2019 ceremony saw a recordbreaking night with a full capacity crowd of over 500 guests in attendance – with plenty more on the waiting list – and are set to sell out well before the event once more. n pre ious years finalists ha e secured remaining tickets within minutes of their release and the 2020 Awards are forecast to follow this trend,” says Steph Dodd, event director at MediaClash. “The latest ticket positions will be updated via Twitter, LinkedIn and email, so keep your eyes peeled. And good luck!”



NEW to Bath

efore the ig night finalists are invited to meet other hopeful winners, headline sponsors The Royal Crescent Hotel and category sponsors at a special Sponsors’ and Finalists’ Reception at The Botanist on 4 February. The Awards will take place at the Assembly Rooms on 27 February. For more: @BathLifeAwards

Here’s to another 21 years


SPONSORED BY 01225 486100


15 January 2020 Finalist reveal and tickets on sale 4 February 2020 Sponsors’ and Finalists’ Reception at The Botanist 27 February 2020 The Bath Life Awards 2020, Assembly Rooms

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU Corston-based global science publisher SelectScience just turned 21. They celebrated the milestone by making their staff the stars of a new ideo. he ehind the-scenes glimpse of life at the company captures the team discussing the secrets of their success, as well as their favourite moments with SelectScience, covering everything from travel to getting the inside scoop on all the latest scientific ad ances. “When we launched SelectScience in 1998, we had a strong vision that it would

Meet the new characters on the Bath business scene

go on to become a leading light in the world of scientific communication and we are proud to see that realised,” says Dr Arif Butt, co-founder of SelectScience. “The rapid growth of recent years is down to the brilliant team we have in Bath and beyond, so we wanted to make sure they took centre stage for this celebration. I’d like to take this opportunity to thank them all.” You can watch the behind-the-scenes video on their website. For more:

Jim Lawrence is the new addition to the Walcot Street offering

JIM LAWRENCE Creative director Cassie Rowland tells us about the process of setting up shop on Walcot Street. First, tell us a bit about Jim Lawrence Jim and his wife Sheena started the company in 1993 on their farmhouse kitchen table. From those early days on the farm to now, things have changed quite a bit but the heart of the company very much remains – to produce iconic, traditional lighting and home furnishings using the finest materials, combined with skills of British craftsmanship. Why did you choose Bath to open your new shop? Over the past few years we have had such fantastic feedback with our pop-up shop at events in this region. We really wanted to uild on that and find a more permanent retail space in the South West. If I’m honest our research for the perfect home didn’t take long – we fell for Bath the minute we drove through its elegant Georgian streets. Tell us about some of the most challenging and most rewarding moments of setting up shop From the outset we set our hearts on Walcot Street. It just fitted so perfectly with us we lo e eing surrounded y so many other independent artisan designers and makers. Finding a lovely old shop with enough space to showcase our extensive collection of over 1,000 period style lighting and home furnishing designs wasn’t going to be easy! We couldn’t believe our luck when 114–116 Walcot Street became available. Seeing our pendant collection twinkling away in the newly restored shop window has to be a real personal highlight for me. We have had so many lovely Bath locals popping in since we opened and are really starting to feel part of the rich tapestry of independent interior shops on Walcot now. For more:


BATH SPORTS NEWS Bringing you the latest in sporting news

Managing director at Ripples, Paul Crow and sales director at Ripples Nicola Crow



Serena Guthrie being inducted into the Hall of Fame for Sport by University of Bath vice-president for student experience Dr Cassie Wilson


Serena Guthrie was inducted into the University of ath all of ame during he i howdown pre season tournament. r assie ilson ni ersity of Bath vice-president for student experience welcomed erena to the all of ame for her status as one of the world s finest mid court players and an inspiration to the clu and the country. er induction was greeted with a standing ovation from netball fans, her fellow

BUSINESS MATTERS DIARY From networking breakfasts to invaluable evening events, make a note of the courses and classes that will help your business 13 JANUARY REBEL MEET UPS BY YENA A networking event for entrepreneurs, whether you’re still thinking about starting out, growing your business or looking for peer support, Rebel Meet ups are just the ticket. This January their ‘fireside speaker’ is Dominick Zwolinkski, a professional magician of 20 years

players and the Strathclyde Sirens, who were on court for their own pre-season match. Serena is the fourth netballer to make it into the uni ersity s all of ame for port where she oins fellow England stars Pamela Cookey and Stacey Francis along with coach Lyn Gunson, after whom the winner s trophy at he i howdown is named and in celebration of.

who has worked on a range of television, corporate and private jobs. 6.30-9pm; The Bath Brew House; 15 JANUARY BATH CHAMBER EVENING NETWORKING AND NIBBLES Bath Chamber of Commerce is kicking off 2020 with a touch of glamour at No.15 Great Pulteney. The evening has a mixed schedule, with informal networking – and the promised nibbles – interspersed with talks from Bath Chamber of Commerce themselves and the team at No.15 Great Pulteney. There’ll even be an opportunity to take a tour of the hotel. 6-8pm; prices vary; No. 15 Great Pulteney;

23 JANUARY SUSTAINABLE TECHNOLOGIES BUSINESS ACCELERATION HUB JANUARY NETWORKING EVENT The Sustainable Technologies Business Acceleration Hub (STBAH) is a business support programme funded by the European Regional Development Fund and in partnership with the University of Bath and SETsquared Bath. It’s a networking event with a focus on sustainability and environmental issues, and the January event is all about sustainability in the fashion and cosmetic sector. 5.30-8pm; The Huntsman;

Ripples won Best Social Media/Online Campaign at the EK&BBusiness awards. hey recei ed their award at a ashy ceremony at the Brewery in London for their campaign with YouTuber Lily Pebbles, who documented her bathroom renovation with Ripples in a video. “We are delighted to have won the award for Best Social Media/Online Campaign” says Paul Crow, managing director for Ripples. “We were excited that Lily chose Ripples to design her bathroom and that it has enabled us to share this story on our various social media channels with thousands of likeminded people looking for their own beautiful bathroom.” Hannah Duddridge


Stone King is welcoming two new faces to its ath o ce. annah uddridge is joining its Family & Mediation Team, while Kez Baily is set to head up the firm s operations. annah oins from awson ornwell in London, where she trained as a solicitor specialising in child law, court of protection and finance on separation. Kez meanwhile, comes from Bevan Brittan LLP, where he was responsible for looking after their outsourced managed ser ice. “We are delighted to welcome Kez and annah to tone ing says Steven Greenwood, managing partner. annah will e a alua le addition to the Family & Mediation Team here in ath and ez will run our operations across our national o ce network. e is also taking the reins on an important pro ect to enhance our infrastructure and support the firm s e isting smart working practices.” I BATH LIFE I 87


ring essential connecti ity to those who need it most. What are you most proud of professionally? ride is an odd emotion with regards to what we e done ut m surrounded y a rilliant team deli ering a rilliant product into a region that will hugely enefit from it. e re deli ering a truly inno ati e technology that will lea e ehind a legacy allowing communities to thri e for generations to come. hould we feel proud ro a ly ut with knowledge that we ha e so much still to do. And personally? y children.


Evan Weinburg Evan Weinburg of Truespeed shares his passion: bringing high-speed internet to communities in need So, tell us about Truespeed ruespeed is a full fi re road and pro ider that was founded to help impro e the daily li es of residents and usinesses throughout the region. e ring full fi re road and to e ery property we connect and are proudly ringing a new era of connecti ity to some of the outh est s hardest to reach areas. e keep our community focused ethos at the forefront of e erything we do and proudly support the areas we work with so they can continue to thri e for years to come. And how did you get into the high-speed internet biz? was frustrated with the poor road and was recei ing at home ha ing een used to much etter when li ed o erseas. saw an opportunity and had the skills and e perience to ring a team together to uild a successful company that would sol e the pro lem across the region.


We heard you supply free internet to schools – why is that important to you? ike all parents want my children to ha e the ery est education. knew that if wanted their school to e a le to take ad antage of ultrafast connecti ity then the est thing would e to pro ide it for free. t seemed the right thing to do and now is core to our roll out program. y pro iding it free of charge it allows schools to re allocate much needed udget elsewhere and can go towards enriching children s education. And you run events, right? What do those involve? e run drop in e ents and sessions so residents can meet our teams in person answer any uestions and learn more a out what we do in a rela ed and friendly en ironment. e re a local company full of local employees and eing a le to chat

face to face with our customers is something we lo e to do. Why did you decide to expand into Bath? As a city we’re not your regular client base e re a regional full fi re road and pro ider and elie e e eryone deser es ultrafast connecti ity whether you are rural or city ased. e re ringing the outh est out of the digital slow lane and that includes cities such as ath. What are some of the challenges in being a relatively new internet provider? uilding an entirely new fi re network to the regions in hardest to reach areas is a di cult costly and comple task. here are huge challenges to o ercome in deli ering a pro ect of this magnitude ut we re proudly getting on with it and uilding where other pro iders refuse to go so we can

“WHEN I TRAVEL TO THE OFFICE, I DON’T FEEL AS IF I’M GOING TO WORK, THAT’S A COOL PLACE TO BE” And what about outside of work? What do you like to get up to on your days off? ost if not all entrepreneurs work long hours and face di cult and pro lematic challenges. find days off are few and far etween ut that goes with the territory. hen tra el to the o ce don t feel as if m going to work that s a cool place to e. ut to answer the uestion do en oy the company of the local cricket team and e en playing when m picked Anything surprising about you you'd like to share? m a ore really didn t run away to the circus and can t play the piano lind folded ut m really passionate a out e uality and fairness and elie ing that people should e happy no matter what. eryone and mean e eryone deser es the right to happiness. For more:





Collection & Delivery service available in the Bath area at no extra cost!

6 Monmouth Place, Bath BA1 2AU Tel 01225 311595



CHURCH HOUSE Delight in this charming Grade II Listed property in the village of Dunkerton By Harriet Noble MEDIACLASH.CO.UK I BATH LIFE I 141 91




don’t think I’ve ever seen a place so happily situated. I like it very well indeed.” So said Elizabeth Bennet on viewing Pemberley for the first time in P&P. But who wants to live in the vast Pemberley really? The heating bills would be eyewatering, you’d have to have a walkie-talkie system so you could communicate with the other people in the house without yelling, and how often would Colin Firth really emerge from the lake? No, you’re better off with the vicarage property – the one where the odious and odourful Mr Collins lives. This sweet, picture-perfect property, with its splendid greenery that frames the windows reminds us very much of Mr Collins’ house (in the BBC version, obviously) with its proximity to the local church and its spire peeping over the trees. Dating back to the 16th Century, Church House is a detached former farmhouse located in the picturesque village of Dunkerton. The rooms have an abundance of period features as you’d expect from a house of this age, like the exposed beams and whopping open fireplaces. I BATH LIFE I 93


And we particularly love the solid wood staircase with galleried landing and the concealed 17th Century spiral staircase, which is accessed via solid wood doors in the dining room and master bedroom. It’s all a bit cloak and daggers, which your guests will (hopefully) love. Thankfully though, the owners have done all the modernising and extending to make it a fully functioning and easy house to live in as well, so you’ve got raised height ceilings, re-plumbing, rewiring, and a pressurized water system with under oor heating throughout the ground oor no less. o need for padding around in your welly socks for eight months of the year then. Countryside chic style runs throughout too, from the brightly green aga to the muted sea and sky Farrow and Ball walls. The large drawing room has French doors that lead to the rear, and sizeable, sun terrace; and here, in the garden surrounded y a million different shades of green is where you’ll really feel like you’re in the most idyllic of places. In excess of one acre, there’s the mature orchard, lovely bit of lawn, and beautiful planting, shrubbery and a handsome selection of trees. There’s also free-standing parking for several cars, a double tandem garage and outbuildings. The property has planning permission to extend and link the main house to the outbuildings if you have grand plans for a bigger abode. As for location, Dunkerton is just six miles south of Bath and, to be honest, sounds like the village of all our collective dreams. We’re reliably informed it has not only a parish hall, church, café, but an annual village fete, and even a regular quiz night. Happily situated? We think so.


HOUSE NUMBERS Square footage




Bathrooms 4 (3 of which are en suite) Price


Anything else? Detached stone stabling incorporating tandem garage Where

Dunkerton, Bath

Pritchards Estate Agents, 11 Quiet Street, Bath, BA1 2LB;


The joy of a room with a view


Peter Greatorex from THE APARTMENT COMPANY highlights one of Bath’s greatest virtues…

hat is it about Bath that has drawn you and kept you here? We’re going to assume that, like us, it’s simply because you love where you live. Whether you own or rent an apartment, your home says something about you and is part of who you are, which is why we love to express ourselves through the décor and furnishings we choose. But there is certainly one key feature that many apartments in Bath are blessed with, and one that is free to all who live there, and that’s the view it gives you. We are privileged to manage a number of apartments with incredible views, views that show the beauty of the rooftops, and those looking out towards the countryside. Each view is unique and tells a story all of its own. There is

something calming about a wonderful view, it’s not just what we see but, more importantly, how it can make us feel. When choosing an apartment in Bath, it’s important to take stock of the environment and not just the apartment, as it isn’t just bricks and mortar that make us feel at home. The environment where you live can help to reduce stress, and what you see, hear and experience can affect your mood. The majority of the views from the apartments we manage include scenes of nature, with apartments in beautiful properties with their own grounds. Even those in the city have breathtaking views where nature is a key feature. Having a view of nature helps us all to feel better and contributes to our physical wellbeing. According to research, even adding a plant to a room within your home can have a

significant impact on stress and anxiety. There are many things to consider when you are looking for a new apartment in Bath, but as you take in each room and its offering, take a look outside the window, as this may show you why this apartment is meant to be your home. If you would like to see the range of apartments we have available to buy or rent, contact our team at The Apartment Company today.

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


FOR THE HOME Our local businesses are poised and ready to help with all your home needs for winter


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ath s leading fireplace wood urner gas fire chimney and ue specialist. rom classic to contemporary concept to completion, their team of experts can work with you to achieve your perfect interior. Brands include Chesney’s, ar as elfires wam tu and etmaster. et in touch or visit the showroom. Mendip Fireplaces, Monkton Combe, Bath inf en ipfirepla es ath k, Tel: 01225 722706;

lair trong nterior esign is a small creati e company based in Bath, providing a wide range of services for oth residential and commercial clients. er portfolio of projects includes the design, project coordination and sourcing for some of Bath’s most beautiful residences, as well as sports clu s o ces and other commercial enues. Contact Clair on 01225 426906 or 07855 79731



huttercraft omerset pro ide premium made to measure shutters and linds for your home. huttercraft gi e you the est pri acy whilst retaining style with a huge variety of colours and materials to choose from. Price matching available on like for like products from your local expert. ontact your local e pert imon today. Tel: 01225 459 389;

Based in the heart of Bath and specialising in bespoke, handmade kitchens, Bath Kitchen Company become personally invested in every kitchen they design and uild. t s a out attention to detail at e ery stage – creating a beautiful space that enhances the way you live. rth ara e il ings, ath Tel: 01225 312003

ayes has een selling furniture in ath for over 100 years now and has a reputation for good quality and excellent service, and the handy customer car park makes rowsing stress free. ou will find furniture of all sorts, with many major brands featured. There are also well respected curtain and carpet departments. n n treet, al t, ath BA1 5BX; Tel: 01225 465757;




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oniti is ased on the outskirts of ath and offers a wide range of quality interior and exterior products: natural stone and tim er ooring erhot range cookers garden furniture and adai fire owls. s well as the ast selection of products on offer a friendly and personal service is at the heart of all that they do. ns n arn, est ittlet n, iltshire Tel: 01225 892 200;

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“Being a comedian is sometimes perfect for having a baby”

JOSIE LONG Ahead of her visit to Bath, comedian Josie Long chats sleep deprivation, being optimistic and pretend farts Have you been to Bath before and if so, what were your impressions of the place?

Yes, I’ve been to Bath a few times to do gigs and also just for fun. I think it’s very fancy. I’m a big fan of the spa. Your comedy tour is called Tender, please expand…

Tender is about how you can bring someone into the world when everyone around you is telling you it’s the end of the world. But you can expect a lot of silliness, and joy... it’s a lot less serious than that sounds. We’ve been told your show is about “the mind-bending intensity of new motherhood” – what’s the stuff that no one mentions?

People tell you you’ll be tired, but they don’t explain that sleep deprivation isn’t the same as tiredness. Sleep deprivation is a trip. You feel wild and too weird for outside, and yet you just have to go about as if you’re normal


and e erything is fine. do think that people don’t tell you enough about the good bits of motherhood though. People love to tell you scare stories but they don’t tell you that every single day you’ll be brought joy courtesy of your child. They will be silly and funny and sweet and loving and that’s just your life now, great! How does being a mum gel with life as a touring comedian?

Being a comedian is sometimes perfect for having a baby. I did a run at the Soho Theatre this month and my show started way after bedtime, so I was able to put my daughter down for bed and go out, (with a babysitter there I should add) and then come home and she was none the wiser. We hear you value silliness highly. How do you insert silliness in your everyday life?

I play with my daughter! It’s amazing. We sing so much, and she makes me laugh. Yesterday she

started to pretend to do farts; I have never been more proud. She also does a thing now where she “goes to sleep” and jumps up and says “WAKE UPPPP!” which is a good laugh. I try to do it at 7am when she wakes me up just to get the extra 3-5 seconds of sleep. That’s how desperate I am.

some people’s worst nightmare and people love to say “you’re so brave!” but honestly – come on! Firemen and women are brave. I’m ust a show off who lo es playing about on-stage, and especially since I had my baby I couldn’t give a damn if I have to deal with tricky audience members.

You talk about politics quite a bit in your shows...

If we wanted to try our hand at being a stand-up comedian, what would be your top tip?

I think that it’s important not to shy away from how things are. I have definitely found that in order to get to a positive and determined place, you sort of need to acknowledge when things are genuinely bad. I’ve recently come to the conclusion that it really doesn’t matter if you’re an optimist or a pessimist, it just matters that you keep going. I think everyone has a kind of in-built temperament. I’m a natural optimist, so it’s easy for me to start the day and think “sod it, let’s give it another go” but for some people each day is like “not this again”. But e eryone can still make a difference if, no matter how they are feeling, they decide to take action – whether that’s a small scale thing in their community or getting involved in politics in a wider sense, you just have to show up and keep showing up, and even if you feel hopeless, what’s great is that you will help to change things and that will make a difference. Do you hang out with other comedians?

Yes! I’ve been a comedian for 20 years and some of my oldest and best friends are from comedy. It’s nice to be around people who understand what the industry is like and who are themselves silly and fun. Does being a comedian ever stop being scary?

Ha, it’s not scary at all. I think it’s

o for it. ook yourself a fi e minute open spot somewhere, then think about all of the things that make you laugh, keep track of interesting and unusual things that happen to you, even just think about what you’re passionate about. Then write down a couple of those ideas and try to think about how you might convey what’s so good/funny/unusual about it to a crowd. Bang, you’re all set. Any other exciting projects on the go?

Yes, I’m making a new series of my Radio 4 show, Short Cuts, which is documentaries on a different theme each week. I’ve also just made a series for English History called Speaking With Shadows that tells previously untold stories from English Heritage sites. I’m developing a couple of comedy drama ideas for TV and that’s what I’m really hoping to keep doing in the future. When you come to Bath, what’s on your to do list?

Honestly all I want is for someone to drive me to Farleigh and District Swimming Club and we can have a dive in the river.

Josie Long will be performing at Komedia on 20 February at 8pm;

Bathrooms at


5 Showroom in bradford on avon 5 The Shambles, Bradford on Avon, BA15 1JS 01225 309110 |

Profile for MediaClash

Bath Life – Issue 408  

Bath Life – Issue 408