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ISLAND LIFE An insatiable thirst for life, business and cars

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The best events from around the Island

The maverick mentor’s remarkable achievements

October/November 2018

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Check out our website

A WORD FROM THE EDITOR Here at Island Life, we love meeting people who have a passion for what they do – whether that’s cooking a delicious meal, creating inspiring art, or simply making people’s lives better as they go about their daily work. This issue we’ve got passion a-plenty, embodied in our three big personality profiles. There’s business mentor Hammie Tappenden, who admits she’s ‘rubbish at maths’ and doesn’t even have a conventional office, but has spent a lifetime helping all kinds of people to realise their dreams. We hear about her recently-awarded MBE and discover exactly what it is that drives her. Also on a business theme, we talk to Geoff Underwood, the ex-Carisbrooke High School pupil who started his working life as a Plessey engineering apprentice and went on to found a £13 million tech business right here on the Island. As well as his business drive, we find out about Geoff’s absolute passion for cars and some rather edgy sports. And then we have Sam Fulford, whose particular passion is for preserving the Island’s traditional boatyards from the creep of waterfront developments. He tells us why he decided to take on the long-unused slipway at Clarence Boatyard and bring back a historic slice of working waterfront as the new base for his ship repair business.







Hammie Tappenden: MBE for business ‘maverick’


Geoff Underwood: Putting

at Wootton Bridge p50

Island on the world map p52

Sam Fulford: Taking back ground for Island boatbuilders

A touch of glitz and glamour

Charity evening at Nunwell House


The wonder of Wolverton



Muddy Bull Run



Electric Woods light up Robin

Featured Property: Plantation


House p16


Featured Property: Osborne


A storm of colour



Classic bikes on display

As easy as D-I-Y


Mystery and magic


A happy all-cash Christmas


Wear it with pride


Quick fixes for winter colour


Matt Noyce: The chill of autumn


Snug as a bug


Countryside news: Tony Ridd


Corvid confusion

Of course you will also find all your favourite regular columns, plus some seasonal features including the traditions behind Halloween, and the wearing of remembrance poppies. We hope you’ll enjoy this autumn menu of reading, and continue to support our loyal band of advertisers. Jackie McCarrick, Editor 4

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10 things you didn’t know about common lizards


Ploughing through the rain to victory


Recipe: Venison & wild mushroom terrine


Equestrian goodies: Trumor

Recipe: Ultimate chocolate yule log


Recipe: Persian lamb tagine


Recipe: Apple & blackberry cake


Recipe: Squidgy chocolate pear pudding

Training Horses: Robert Booth



Equestrian goodies: Froghill of Sandford


Local producers

Four legged fun at dog show



Sam Biles: Conservation dilemma






Island Life contributors


Fancy dressage at Kingates




Smashing start to the season


Travel: The unsung island


New challenge for eventers




Auction news


Legal: Closing the


James Spence: Why your teeth can move


‘preparedness gap’ p122

Accommodation pages

Supporting your skin

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Island Life Magazine Suite 2, 17 St Thomas Square, Newport, PO30 1SL

01983 216111




THE ISLAND LIFE TEAM Editor: Jackie McCarrick

Contributors: Tony Ridd, Terence Willey, Sam Biles, Robert Booth, Matt Noyce, Warren Riches

Terence Willey

Warren Riches

Tony Ridd

Matt Noyce

Robert Booth

Sam Biles

Legal & travel


Head of Sales: Natalie Labelle 07814 723610

Accounts: Carina Farrer 07933 360321

Design: Colin Clarke

Distribution: Steve Read 07894 738246

Photography: Jonathon Sheath



Front Cover: An Autumn garden with pumpkin, chrysanthemums and decorative cabbage

View all our back issues from the last thirteen years...




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Christmas at Vintage Rose Tearooms

Events from across the Island

Harp on Wight 2018 The fifth annual Harp on Wight Festival takes place in Ryde between 26th-30th October inclusive. Leading international harpists will be taking part in a series of concerts and teaching workshops covering a diverse range of styles including Classical, Celtic, Breton and Paraguayan. There will also be opportunities to come and try the harp for the first time. The festival also includes a six-day course to make a harp at Quarr Abbey and an exhibition of harps made by national manufacturers at Ryde Methodist Church in Garfield Road which is the main festival venue. For full details of the festival please visit

A fresh look at military history During the October holidays come and be amazed at the Wight Military and Heritage Museum in Northwood. The Air Rifle range is open and weather dependent, armoured car rides will be available. There is a 1940s street scene, with replica buildings, an ARP office, workshop, and general stores. Items from WW2 include an American half-track and a mighty Scammell

recovery truck. From WW1, there are machine guns on display and items dug up from the Somme battlefield. Churchills cafe, is filled with memorabilia and provides hot and cold refreshments, while the gift shop stocks a wide range. The museum is a registered charity and conveniently located on the main Cowes to Newport road. Open daily from 10am to 3pm except Sunday.

Enjoy a vintage Christmas treat this festive period with Vintage Rose Tearooms, who from the 1st December will be hosting Christmas parties and events. Seven days a week you will be able to book a four course Christmas dinner, from 9am - 8pm. No party is too small, call them on 07562 980745 to book now or for more information. Not only that, but again from Dec 1st, you can also enjoy a breakfast with Santa, from Thursday to Sunday. Running for an hour from 8.30am, it’s best to book now to avoid disappointment. Vintage Christmas afternoon teas will be running, or you can enjoy a festive coffee or mulled wine. If you want to give a Tearooms treat to others, gift vouchers are available. Find Vintage Rose Tearooms on Pyle Street, Newport, PO30 1JW.

Boxing Day swim with The Salix

Christmas at Quay Arts For the festive season Quay Arts have a fun packed schedule with something for everyone. Starting off with IW Arts Open Studios holding their Christmas craft fayre on the 24 & 25 Nov – find the perfect gift for that special someone! From the first week in December Quay Arts hold Christmas theatre productions 8

by Origins Theatre, ‘Dine with Dickens’ evening, and for adults only they will be putting on their popular comedy night with a festive twist. For the kids they will be holding a whole weekend of Christmas activities to get involved in from a family drop-in to The Tales of Beatrix Potter theatre show.

The Annual Boxing Day swim at Small Hope Beach, Shanklin, has been going for at least 40 years. The Salix Beach Cafe is organising it for the fourth year running. Each year it has been growing in popularity and is a great way to work off that Christmas Turkey. Fancy dress costumes are a must to join in the fun and help raise money for The Sandown & Shanklin Independent Lifeboat. DJ Steppin Out Boogie Bus will be dropping the beats to help get everyone warmed up and in the mood. There is a live countdown at 12.30 in sync with the Lifeboat crew waiting in Sandown Bay, for the run-in en masse. The Salix is open from 9am with hot food available and have a roaring log fire, hot chocolate, Island Roasted coffee, hot toddys and mulled wine to help warm you up after the dip.

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Autumn events at Seaview Art Gallery Project Opera Autumn collaborations Project: Opera’s autumn dates see lead Soprano, Annalisa Vaughan, collaborating with local artists of other genres. Sounds of Heaven in October will be a recital of sacred songs performed by Annalisa and Organist Richard Benger, entwined with poetic depictions of the Mysteries of the Holy Rosaries, written and read by local celebrated poet Edmund Matyjaszek. It will be held on 13th October, 7pm, at St Mary’s RC church, Ryde and on 21st October, 7:30pm, at St Thomas’ RC church, Cowes. On 3rd November, Ryde Methodist church, Garfield Road, will host Lest we forget, a programme of opera, lieder, blues, folk and sacred music, performed by soprano Annalisa

Vaughan, singer/songwriter Victoria Clarke, saxophonist Marie Smith, and pianists Jane Carter and Alan Nicholls. The artists will perform pieces that to them represent how war affects people from every background. Guest poet Edmund Matyajszek will read poetry by Wilfred Owen. Early in December, Project:Opera returns to Bembridge and Cowes with Tea at the Opera - Sacro v Profano, a programme of Oratorio and Opera, performed by Annalisa Vaughan, Clarice Williams, Yuri Sabatini, Adam Leftwich and Pianist Richard Benger. Advanced bookings are recommended. Bookings on www.ticketsource. Enquiries on 07757 965339.

Celebrating 2019 with Electric Disco The Electric Disco New Year’s Eve party can’t be beaten. Every year it’s a sell-out event with up to 1,000 partygoers and a huge midnight countdown. It’s the ultimate place to celebrate the start of the New Year. In the Main Room, music from Xtreme Vertigo DJs brings you the best sounds of the 70s and 80s. This is followed by your favourite Club Classics from across the decades to end the night with DJ Jakey Chan. The Second Room hosts the Silent Disco. As you enter, you will be loaned free headphones and it’s then up to you

to select your DJ. The choice is yours from House, Rock, Ska, Chart and Pop, our DJs will be battling it out to win your approval. Staging and set effects are second to none, with their very own Big Ben to chime you into the New Year followed by a huge midnight show, featuring a funky countdown, a fountain of sparklers falling from the skies and confetti showers! There really is only one place to see in the New Year, on the Electric Disco Dance floor! Tickets are £15 -£20, visit or www.

Seaview Art Gallery has a few more upcoming events this Autumn. ‘The RSMA and NAPA Autumn Show’ runs from Wed Oct 17th - Wed Oct 31st. A magnificent selection of work from all the Gallery artists who are members of these societies are on show. Not to be missed! Fri 23rd Nov is Black Friday and Sat 1st Dec is Small Business Saturday. On both these occasions there will be 24 hour offers in the Gallery and 48 hour offers reserving online. Including selected artworks, jewellery, maritime items, lighting, silver items etc. Check out the website - - for details and opening hours nearer the time.

Christmas fairs at Quarr Abbey Quarr Abbey will be holding a series of pop up fairs this November and December. Crafty Arts Christmas Fair runs from the 10th - 11th November and the Food and Drink Christmas Fair will run from the 24th - 25th November. December sees Quarr hosting Fishbourne Art Group on the 8th - 9th. All will offer free entry and free parking. The Crafty Artist Christmas Fair will offer craft and gift ideas from a variety of artists, to help you find those Christmas present ideas. The Food and Drink Christmas Fair will feature suppliers from across the Island and give you a chance to taste before you buy. Contact Quarr Abbey on 01983 882420 for more information.

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Fashion, health & beauty

Waverly diamond bubble ring. Available in a selection of precious metals. Set with 0.90 carats of G colour Si1 clarity diamonds in 18ct Yellow Gold. Priced from £2,300.00.

Actual heartbeat wedding ring. Laser engraved with a heartbeat. Includes guidance to capture your heart rhythm using ECG reader. Prices from £375.00.

Avalon pink sapphire engagement ring with 0.25 carat double row diamond shoulders. £1,066.00.

Double heart pattern fingerprint wedding rings. Priced from £1,300 for two 4mm wedding rings in 950 Palladium including two fingerprint engravings. Alternative styles, widths and precious metals available to order.

Men’s slight court wedding ring crafted in 18ct Rose Gold. Available in a variety of different precious metals, styles and width options. Shown here laser engraved with client’s own handwriting and accompanying fingerprint engraving. Priced from £500.00.

Lila design diamond solitaire engagement ring. Priced from £980.00 based on 0.30 carat version set into 950 Palladium. Available to customise online or in-store.

Four claw diamond stud earrings available in a full choice of precious metals, diamond qualities and sizes. Available from stock or in store. Alternative styles and options also available.

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Prestige property


PLANTATION HOUSE A stunningly contemporary home located in a quiet location with sea views, a short walk from the beach and sailing club.

Plantation House was constructed for the current owners in a style inspired by a house from South Carolina.

quality fittings and granite tiling. The rooms have high ceilings of 9 feet providing a spacious feel.

The house was built with a great attention to detail, with features such as the handmade curved staircase and beautifully curved bay windows.

There is also an integrated Sonos sound system, which is zoned with built-in speakers throughout the majority of the house and also on the front and rear terraces. There are sea glimpses from all principal rooms, which become more open views in the winter months.

In addition to the striking entrance, the house benefits from a great combination of five bedrooms and five bathrooms along with two large family rooms and impressive reception room, which combined with the extensive decked terraces to the rear makes it an impressive house for entertaining, yet also a very comfortable friendly home. Each bedroom is served by a wellappointed bath or shower room with


“The house was built with a great attention to detail, with features such as the handmade curved staircase and beautifully curved bay windows.�

Situated on a lane by the coastal path, providing direct access to superb country walks and along the coast to Priory Bay or Culver Down and beyond, the nearest beach is some 150m away. Bembridge Harbour at the end of the lane has extensive mooring facilities, whilst there are also numerous beaches.

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Prestige Property

The grounds To the front of the property is a gravelled driveway providing parking for four vehicles with automatic lighting. Wide steps lead up to the south facing veranda with outside lighting and speakers providing an attractive outdoor seating area. The principal garden lies to the rear of the house, where there are a series of decked seating and dining area terraces with halogen uplighters, providing a great entertaining space. There are also outdoor speakers and lighting. Steps lead down from the terraces to an attractive lawned garden interspersed with mature trees and various borders which form an attractive setting for the house. A path leads down onto the unmade lane (Pump Lane), which provides easy pedestrian access to the beach and Bembridge Sailing Club without having to go onto main roads. All the trees on the plot and adjacent land have a blanket Tree Preservation Order on them. Where: Bembridge Agent: Spence Willard Bembridge 01983 873000 Guide Price: ÂŁ1,450,000 EPC: C

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Dedicated to selling the finest property across the Isle of Wight A delightful and well-appointed one bedroom barn conversion with established productive holiday let business situated in its own grounds with excellent countryside views, a summerhouse with hot tub spa, gardens and parking. The Barn is situated in beautiful rural countryside on the outskirts of Newport, and has been in the same family for 200 years. The Barn is restricted to holiday accommodation only. The property lets for around £1,000 a week depending upon the season; recent gross income is approximately £30,000 per annum. Accounts are available on application. EPC: E

GUIDE PRICE: £375,000


Sole Agents

A spacious four bedroom chalet style house in a quiet village location in Shorwell within easy reach of the coast, Newport and the wonderful countryside of the Island’s South West. With three bath/shower rooms and mature gardens this light and airy property with its integral garage and ample parking will appeal to families and retirees alike. This friendly village has a strong community spirit and is only a short walk to the church, pub and other facilities. EPC: D


GUIDE PRICE: £425,000

Sole Agents

Biles & Co | Estate Agents & Chartered Surveyors The Estate Office, 13 High Street, Bembridge, Isle of Wight, PO35 5SD Tel: 01983 527744 E: 14

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Prestige property


OSBORNE COTTAGE Osborne Cottage is a historically important, Grade II listed four five bedroom house forming part of the former home of Queen Victoria’s youngest daughter. This delightful attached period property adjoins the Osborne House Estate. goods include hoppers dated 1856.

This is an opportunity to acquire a rare piece of the Island’s heritage intrinsically linked with Queen Victoria and Osborne. Osborne Cottage was built in around 1856 and has been sub-divided into a number of private residences. This particular property contains several of the principal rooms of the original house with many elaborate original architectural and decorative features; it stands in its own garden. The property is part-way through a refurbishment project and offers a rare opportunity to complete the detailed restoration to create a unique family home. The property has attractive red and yellow chequer-work brick elevations under an ornate clay tile roof. Cast iron rainwater 16

“The property is part-way through a refurbishment project and offers a rare opportunity to complete the detailed restoration to create a unique family home.”

Original windows, many of which have been recently refurbished and have unusual original, concealed rising sash shutters. Others have folding shutters. Casement windows have cast iron lights in a lozenge and diamond pattern. The surprisingly spacious accommodation has many original character features including the stunning galleried landing with vaulted roof and circular sky lantern. The current owners have progressed the restoration project whilst retaining the valuable and historic features. The impressive reception rooms have many exquisite period features and are quite magnificent, emphasising the heritage of the building.

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The grounds Approached by a long, shared driveway with car park, the Cottage enjoys gardens to the rear and side bounded by mature hedging and trees with an additional lawned area to the front. Where: East Cowes Agent: Biles and Co 01983 872335 Guide Price: £625,000 EPC: N/A

A home built for the Royal family Princess Beatrice (1857-1944) was the fifth daughter and youngest child of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert. Victoria consented to her marriage to Prince Henry of Battenberg on condition that Henry lived permanently with Beatrice and the Queen at Osborne. After the Queen’s death at Osborne in 1901 Princess Beatrice moved into Osborne Cottage, on the edge of the estate. In 1913, when Carisbrooke Castle, home of the Governor of the Isle of Wight, became vacant, Princess Beatrice took up her right to residence and sold Osborne Cottage. In August 1945 Princess Beatrice’s coffin was carried by motor torpedo boat through the fleet at Portsmouth and Spithead. After a very private service at East Cowes she was interred beside her beloved Henry.

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Prestige Property

As easy as D-I-Y As an idyllic long summer comes to an end and we all head back indoors, our interior space might suddenly be feeling a bit drab, closed-in and uninspiring. In which case, a quick make-over might be just the thing, to freshen up the place and lift the energies. And that needn’t mean going in for a costly, full-on decorating or re-modelling job – in fact, there are plenty of relatively small adjustments that can be made that will instantly breathe new life into the home. Take greenery, for instance. If all that time outdoors has made you yearn to sit among lush vegetation, then simply bring some indoors. House plants have never been more popular since the 1970s, and the huge variety on offer at garden centres and florist shops these days is incredible – from lush orchid plants to big jungly palms, iconic Swiss Cheese plants, cascading ferns and strikingly structural cacti. Placed in colour-co-ordinated ceramic pots and grouped for effect, a display of plants will soften the edges of any room, give depth and character – and that’s not to mention the proven health benefits of having toxinreducing plants around the home. Another easy fix is to embrace that currently popular interiors

trend from Denmark – Hygge – and go in for lots of candles, some new cushions and cosy blanket throws to make your living space invitingly winter-ready. If it’s your furniture that is looking rather tired, a bit of upcycling can do wonders, with a pot of paint and a bit of elbow grease being all it takes to breathe new life into a set of kitchen chairs, a dresser or chest of drawers. Clutter is probably the biggest enemy of a restful living

space, though – and as home improvements go, a simple tidyup might be all that’s required. Creating storage solutions to keep everything in its place can be as easy as buying a set of inexpensive storage trunks or second-hand chest of drawers – or even getting creative and making some of your own, by covering lidded boxes with pretty paper or plastic in colours that co-ordinate with your décor scheme.

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Prestige Property

‘Quirk’ rules at The Cowshed! One of the Island’s quirkiest antiques outlets, The Cowshed, celebrates 25 years of trading this year – and it’s certainly come a long way. When the family-run business launched back in 1993 it was with just a few items of furniture displayed in the straw-filled cowshed that was home to two friendly pygmy goats. Fast forward to 2018 and The Cowshed has grown into the Island’s largest antique warehouse, full of unusual pieces of furniture and antiques, rustic iron and salvage items. In its unique rustic setting at Froglands Farm, Carisbrooke, it offers a laid-back atmosphere that lends itself to unhurried browsing among the Victorian cupboards, folk art dressers and traditional sea chests or the lighting, rugs and decorative items. At one time, churns, dressers and old floorboards were the best sellers, but today from their user-friendly, up-to-the minute

website they sell everything from fruit machines to huge tables! They also sell bespoke furniture made to order ( and have a quirky campersite complete with helicopter as part of the accommodation line-up ( Visitors to the warehouse will always see something different as pieces rapidly change hands – and those hands behind the enterprise are Richard, Stafford, Rhys, Linda, Pat, Judith... and the so-called ‘instigator of quirk’, Stewart! You can find the Cowshed in Froglands Lane, near to Carisbrooke Castle. Browsers are always welcome, or for enquiries, call Richard 07884 445 720, Stewart on 07957 572 221 or Rhys on 07983 613 715.

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Prestige property

The electrician who sparked a business success An Island business that started out in 1993 as a one-man electrician service has evolved over the past 25 years to become one of the region’s major players in the construction industry, with a client list that reads like a Who’s Who of business.

Left to right: Gowan Ruler, Contracts Manager & Andy Rothery, Commercial Manager


Trevor Jones was just 19 when he boldly launched out as an independent electrical contractor. At that stage, he had completed a three-year apprenticeship with Wight Electrical (part of the former Island Builders Group), but due to the recession, saw his job with them disappear. “The very next day after leaving, I started sub-contracting and I guess I never looked back” he says. Five years down the line, and still aged only 24, Trevor had a business that had become so successful that he was

employing 15 electricians which was why in 1998 he took the decision to incorporate as Trevor Jones Electrical Limited. Fast forward another five years to 2003, and the company had branched out into building & development work – so much so that Trevor celebrated the 10th anniversary of the business by creating an additional arm of the original electrical business to specialise in the development work. The next five-year milestone came in 2008 when the electrical side of the business responded to the recession of that period by shifting its focus to larger contracts, and taking on major re-fits for big-name clients such as BAE Systems. In 2010, this growing arm of the business was re-named

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Prestige Property

The van when starting the business in 1993 Trevor Jones Contracting Ltd., and re-focussed firmly on new clients and principal works. “The contracting arm is geared up to cater for those larger jobs” says Trevor, “and we have clients all over the south coast as well as on the Island”. Indeed, it was in 2010 that Trevor made the decision to move off the island, to Chichester in order to further expand the business – although he still travels back and forth on the Hovercraft to the Island base in Havenstreet four times a week. Among the prestigious projects the company has worked on in recent years, there’s been a £1.1 million refurbishment of HMS Collingwood, Fareham which

is for the New Aircraft Carriers IT Test Facility, an Electrical installation at Marwell Zoo’s New Discovery Centre, a 1 Million Euro Mechanical Project to upgrade the Air Conditioning in a GKN Aerospace Factory in Munich Germany – not to mention other large-scale projects for clients such as the IOW & Hampshire County Council, Isle of Wight College, BAE Systems, Aircraft Carrier Alliance and Snows BMW, Snows SEAT, Snows Mini, Snows Peugeot on various sites across the South. Trevor says its success has been built on providing a uniquely personal service to every client whatever their budget – whether that be a domestic customer needing a relatively small electrical

Will with Mark Pitfield ‘Site Manager’ outside the Palmers Road development in 2017

Trevor Jones

job or a large company wanting a bespoke design for building services, or tailored electrical and mechanical packages. A quarter of a century after he started out, Trevor’s now very wellknown, own-name business still employs around 15 people, but these days it also draws on a large portfolio of trusted sub-contractors from all over the island. Meanwhile he remains passionate about encouraging young talent on the island via apprenticeships. He has employed seven apprentices over the past 25 years, and two remain with him as fully-trained and skilled craftsmen. “Having gone down that route myself, I have a 100% belief in apprenticeships” he says. “We really do need to encourage them to ensure the future of our industry”. And one of them might even be Trevor’s own 15 year-old son Will, who has had work experience with different trades in the company for the past two summers, and is currently considering a career as a Chartered surveyor.

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Prestige Property

Pictures perfectly framed The combined talents of a father and daughter have produced a service that can capture cherished memories and favourite images for a lifetime. The Cowes-based workshop of A. Hathaway Picture Framing is run by Anthony and Laura Hathaway, and offers bespoke framing and expert repairs for individual and contract customers. Anthony’s technical skills are combined with the creative flair of Laura, a local artist who draws on her Degree in design, her knowledge of fine art and natural creativity to complement her dad’s meticulous work. The workshop holds a large selection of PEFC and FSCapproved mounts and mouldings with ranges in bare woods alongside pre-finished mouldings

with watercolours oils, pastels and fine art prints or photos, certificates, mirrors and keepsakes in 3-D settings, and also offer frame repair and conservation. As part of their friendly and personal approach, the Hathaways are always happy to give advice and guidance on how to achieve the perfect frame and finish. Their workshop is open weekdays for walk-in enquiries and they can also offer weekend appointments as well as art group visits on request. Image by permission of Jo Hummel-Newell

in wood tones, plastic and plasticcoated. Anthony and Laura can also create hand-finished frames using stains, waxes, paint and hand gilding techniques. They’re equally happy working

Contact A. Hathaway Picture Framing on 07740 407655 or you can find them at Unit 6A Northwood Business Park (rear of 290) Newport Road, Northwood, PO31 8PE. Visit their websites at or

Safe and secure for 50 years A second generation family storage business is celebrating half a century of service to the Island this year. Vectis Storage was launched purely as a transport and storage business in Sandown 1968, by husband and wife team the Harrisons – but as the enterprise grew, the family expanded into the self-storage business in Newport in 1992. That was followed by acquiring the Osborne Stable Block site in East Cowes, where they have created a small Business Park, and more recently, they have opened a site at Kingston for shipping containers and caravan storage.

The shipping containers at Kingston

For customers Vectis Storage offers affordable, dry and secure purpose-built units for the storage of everything from household items and business stock, right through to vehicles and boats. Customers have the reassurance of knowing that they are the only keyholder to their unit and that there is 24/7 CCTV in operation at the site.

The business continues under the direction of the Harrisons’ son Richard who joined the family firm 13 years ago and is now Managing Director, and also his sister Poppy who has recently joined the team. To contact Vectis Storage call 01983 281881 or visit the website at

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Inside Business

Autumn on the water The peak sailing season might be over for another year, but the view at Bembridge Harbour is that sailing during the month of October, albeit with suitable clothing, can still be a viable and very enjoyable pastime; there is usually not too much rain, and although the days are shortening, if you are berthed or moored up before the sun sets, you can have some of the greatest sailing available and extend the summer season. November and onwards through to mid-March can be more testing - however the occasional day with a bright blue sky and gentle breeze still takes a lot of beating. The Harbour attempts to give the best of both worlds - the ability to sail when you want to, by keeping your boat on a fully

serviced walk-ashore pontoon (prices ranging from £375 for an 8m boat), to storage on land or inside the Bembridge Boat Storage shed with prices from £600 (both prices for 6 months fully inclusive). In either case, the in-house team can work wonders in restoring varnish, RIB tubes, and hulls, whilst also servicing engines

and electrics, and welcoming specialist professionals at no extra cost when required. You can contact the harbour office on 01983 872828. Find them at The Duver, St Helens, PO33 1YB, email: office@bembridgeharbour. or visit the website: www.

Christmas Party Nights at Ventnor Botanic Garden Whether you are organising work celebrations or planning a friends’ get-together, a Classic Christmas Party with us offers a great opportunity to let your hair down and party the night away! Our Classic Christmas Party Nights will be held on Friday 21st and Saturday 22nd December. Partygoers will be treated to a welcome glass of festive bubbles, a delicious threecourse dinner prepared by our AA Rosette-awarded Chef, Brad Roe, and followed by coffee and mince pies. Also included are

for the table before you arrive. The bar opens at 7.00pm, with dinner served at 7.45pm. Last orders will be 11.45pm with Carriages at 12.30am. The price per person for this event is £40. We also can offer our venue for private Christmas parties with a minimum number of 30. Please contact us to discuss your requirements. Christmas crackers and table novelties, and a great nights entertainment from our DJ! Our Pay Bar will be open throughout the evening, but you can pre-order your drinks

To see the menu and get a booking form, please view our website, or phone for details on 01983 858048.

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Prestige Property

Transforming concrete An everyday building material is being re-worked and given a stylish, contemporary look by two creative designers on the Isle of Wight. Trev and Gary launched their business Raw Concrete last year, and as the name suggests, their niche is in creating bespoke, one-off pieces of work - from tables and kitchen worktops to floors, walls and wetrooms – out of humble concrete. Not that the concrete looks particularly humble when they’ve finished with it: their worktops and furniture are hand-trowelled to give a beautiful, burnished finish, and then sealed using the

highest quality sealers with the option of satin or gloss finish. They also do concrete tiles and

panels for walls and floors, which offer a stylish and contemporary alternative to ceramic or

porcelain - and being superdurable, these are ideal for commercial spaces such as retail units, hospitality venues, offices and showrooms, as well as in the home. With combined skills in architecture, interior design and carpentry, Trev and Gary say they’ve always enjoyed being creative with raw materials and building something different – and as the Island’s first ‘cast in-situ’ concrete worktops and furniture specialists, they’re certainly doing that. Call Raw Concrete on either 07429 867772 or 07907 251133 or visit the website at

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Prestige Property

Orangery solution for light and space To the rich and powerful of the 17th - 19th centuries, having an orangery was seen as a definite status symbol.

Owners of villas, mansions and country houses could effectively show off their wealth by having a whole room in which their prized orange and other fruit trees could grow indoors right through the winter. Now, in the 21st century, the orangery is enjoying something of a revival – but far from being just for mansion-owners, the lightfilled rooms are being added on to homes of all sizes and styles. Different from a conservatory, an orangery has a brick base and a flat perimeter roof with a central roof lantern that allows the light to flood in. One Island company that has seen the growth in demand for orangeries is Newport-based White Windows Ltd, who say



that customers love the way that this type of extension blends so beautifully into their home. It effectively becomes another room, and typically, people choose to use them as an additional lounge or dining area, or as an office, playroom or home gym. The orangery style roof is characterised by an aluminium roof lantern and Bioclean, Aqua-tinted glass with a high-performance solar control coating and lowmaintenance self cleaning. This means it reflects and absorbs up to 82% of the sun’s heat and means there’s usually no need for air conditioning, or blinds that obscure the view. The Aqua tint also reduces glare, as well as the bleaching effect the sun can have on soft furnishings. Another bonus for having

an orangery is that it typically increases the value of a home, because they are becoming such a popular feature. White Windows Ltd say that an orangery will also link a house with its garden – even more so if bi-folding doors, French doors or patio doors are incorporated into the design as a beautiful opening onto the outdoor space. The other big attraction for homeowners is that an orangery can usually be fitted without the need for planning permission as they are categorised as ‘permitted development’. Find White Windows Ltd at 12 Dodnor Park, Newport, PO30 5XE. Call 01983 523552 or visit the website at www.

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MBE for business ‘maverick’ After business advisor Hammie Tappenden was named in the New Years Honours List, she decided that there was only one place she wanted the presentation of her MBE to take place – and it wasn’t Buckingham Palace. Instead, Hammie opted to have a ceremony here on the Isle of Wight, presided over by Her Majesty’s Lord Lieutenant and attended by family and friends, along with many of the people she’s helped to set up in business over the years. As it turned out, the MBE presentation wasn’t her only reason for celebration on that September 1st date, as Jackie McCarrick discovered when she caught up with her.

When Hammie called her longtime partner Rob to tell him about her being awarded the MBE, she mischievously prefaced the news with the quip: “Have you got a smart suit?” and then swiftly added, “don’t worry, I’m not asking you to marry me!” The joke clearly planted a seed in Rob’s mind, though, because just a couple of months before September’s big award ceremony,


he proposed - with the novel suggestion that they could be married on the same date. And so it turned out that Hammie became Mrs Ford at Newport Register Office in the morning - witnessed by two friends and her daughter Ellie and partner – and then, a few hours later in a different kind of ceremony at Porchfield Cricket Club, she

officially became an MBE. Quite a day by anybody’s standards – not least for the quick changes of clothes required, from morning wedding outfit into tee-shirt and jeans to prepare the self-catered reception buffet, and then into posh clothes for the formal presentation by Major General Sir Martin White KCVO CB CBE in the afternoon. “It was a fabulous day and all the

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Major General Sir Martin White and Hammie Tappenden

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Interview people who most mattered to me were there” says Hammie. While most people might have preferred the traditional grand reception at Buckingham Palace, she had actually already been a guest at the Palace back in 2013, when she met The Queen, Prince Philip and Prince Charles after receiving the Queen’s Award from Enterprise, so she requested an Island-based ceremony this time.

Amazing record The MBE was in recognition of Hammie’s remarkable record of helping 6,000 people and 800 businesses over a quarter of a century, and as she told the 110 guests at the ceremony: “A little bit of the award belongs to everyone I have worked with over the last 25 years, because without my fantastic clients who take the risk to go self-employed, I wouldn’t be where I am now.” So who are these people? Hammie’s Solent-based IntoBiz has worked with all kinds of business start-ups, including a struggling single mum who started up a cleaning business on a windfall bank bonus of just £100 and managed to secure five clients on her first day, to a young martial arts trainer who set up classes for local youngsters and had them full within a month.

Hammie Tappenden

As she says, the basis of her job is in helping people to believe in themselves, recognise their unique strengths and skills – and then invest in them. Her approach is distinctly downto-earth, so this one-woman morale-boosting service doesn’t operate from big shiny offices – in fact, her office is pretty much contained in “my Smart car and my briefcase”, while her oneto-one business meetings are typically held in coffee shops ... independent ones that is, not Starbucks or Costas! And she says there has never been a greater demand for small business start-up advice, as people search for solutions to their financial problems or an escape from conventional or low-paying jobs. STS Lord Nelson where Hammie served as cook


“Huge debt has become an increasing problem for many people” she explains, “and it can send them into a spiral of self-destruction. “Often you’ll find that people have unrealistic expectations of a business, and think they’ll be rich in six months”. Having said all that, working with start-ups has always given Hammie her greatest satisfaction, and over the years she has helped to turn around the lives of hundreds of ex-offenders, ex-addicts, single parents and older people who struggle to get back into the workplace. “The first thing I always advise people is to do what you love” she says, “and then find a way to make it work for you”.

First-hand experience Hammie’s clients realise pretty quickly that she doesn’t talk from an ‘ivory tower’, but from

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Interview hard-won personal experience. Having been a single mum who, in one period of her life admits “I couldn’t afford to feed my child and was so depressed that I would just go back to bed and sleep for hours”, she can relate to people’s struggles. Her particular way out of that inertia was to buy a charcoal company together with a friend, an incredibly physical and hands-on business but one that got her back on track in terms of earning a living. “We literally chopped wood and made charcoal which we then delivered in a green van” she recalls. Ultimately they sold the charcoal business on, but what it had done, as well as earning her a living, was to bring Hammie back to herself, and cause her to miss her old life in the creative business arena.

The ‘escalator moment’ After graduating in the mid1980s, she had started out as a jewellery and textile designer in

London – and was so successful that her designs sold all over the world. However, after a business decision that lost her money in the US, she says she had “an escalator moment” at Kings Cross Station, and decided she wanted out of Big City life. Having been brought up in Wales, her rural roots were calling, and she responded by re-grouping and moved to a studio workshop at Winchester School of Art, where she also taught students. With a lifelong love of boats and an involvement with the Jubilee Sailing Trust, she had also bought a converted Grimsby fishing trawler, and was looking for somewhere to moor it: that was when she discovered that the Isle of Wight offered the cheapest mooring rates, and decided to come here with her boat for what she planned to be six months. “And I just stayed” she says. “It was such a lovely place to live. I loved the unique environment and the slower pace of life, and although I did think I might miss the mainland, I never have.”

After an idyllic three years living on the boat at Island Harbour on the Medina (pre-housing developments) she moved to a cottage in Porchfield and combined her art and design business with family life and being a mum to Ellie, now 26.

Finding mentors Her first foray into business mentoring came in 1992 when she began working for the Isle of Wight Enterprise Agency – and at that time, she was the one being mentored, as she ran the Shell LiveWIRE and Prince’s Business Trust programmes. “I had amazing mentors in the late John Wolfenden of the Enterprise Agency and Tim Austin of South Hampshire Enterprise Agency” she says. “They encouraged me when I was still quite young, to just get on with it. I’d been running a business myself for several years by that time, and was on a bit of a rollercoaster, but they saw something in me, and helped and

“The first thing I always advise people is to do what you love and then find a way to make it work for you.”

Daughter Ellie with pet rescue dogs

Hammie with husband Rob Ford on the afternoon of their wedding.

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Interview supported me on my journey. She says she was also encouraged by Liz Wood, who persuaded her to get her Masters Degree in Entrepreneurship at Durham University, the first of its kind in the country. In the years that followed, Hammie has created and run a whole range of business startup and women’s enterprise programmes across the Island and Southern counties, including Women Into Business, Enterprise Rural Women and Rural Grants, and has worked for Enterprise First and West Itchen Community Trust. There was also the imaginitve Junk to Funk, with its focus on teaching people new skills in upcycling and recycling combined with business information, and New Enterprise Allowance, working with Pinnacle People and the DWP to take people from benefits to small business through workshops, mentoring and business loans and grants.

Ellie is a successful veterinary nurse in Scotland – and was a national finalist in the UK National Veterinary Awards. Meanwhile Hammie – who managed a brief “mini-moon” with Rob after their wedding – was soon back on the road in her trusty Smart car as she leads on a new project, Trading Up 4 Change, a business programme for people working less than 16 hours a week. Describing her approach, she says “With all my clients, I listen, I challenge, I laugh, I cry, I hug, I create, I share, I believe, I help, I care and I fight. I refuse to put people through a uniform process - instead I work with them as individuals, recognising

their individual needs. “I’m rubbish at maths, I can’t spell, and I don’t have a conventional office – all of which I guess makes me a kind of maverick - but it allows me to do what I love best.” “I take individuals on a journey. We don’t know what it will be or if it will be successful, we don’t know if they are cut out to run their own business, but I hardly ever turn anybody down. “I share my own rollercoaster life because I think it’s important that people understand that everybody has challenges and need to just take a risk every now and then - and somehow this does create success.”

Recognition In the process, Hammie has been recognised with over 20 awards, including accolades from Shell LiveWIRE (she was a national finalist in 1988 and Co-ordinator of the Year in 1999), a PROWESS National Award in 2004 for women’s enterprise support, and the Queen’s Award for Enterprise in 2012. In 2000, during her own difficult ‘single parent period’, she also won a Winston Churchill Foundation Travel Fellowship that enabled her to travel around the world researching women’s enterprises – and was able to take along daughter Ellie, for what was undoubtedly the trip of a lifetime. The eight year-old went to schools in different countries, and the experience clearly reaped benefits because nowadays,


Ellie and Hammie

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Mystery & magic! It’s an ancient tradition that was revved up into a big sales event by the Americans – and in recent years the celebration of Hallowe’en has taken off in a big way here in the UK as well. In fact, last year, supermarket chain Asda reported a giant increase in October pumpkin sales, with around 2.2 million of the familiar orange globes being sold, compared to 1.35 million in 2015. Of course some of these might be destined for the pot as a pumpkin soup – but most will no doubt end up being carved into the familiar spooky head-shaped lampshades for the October 31st celebration. The custom of making these so-called jack-o’-lanterns for Hallowe’en began in Ireland in the 19th century when the then more commonly available turnips or mangel wurzels were hollowed

out and carved with grotesque faces, to be used as lanterns. This reflected the fact that Hallowe’en evolved from the Celtic festival of Samhain - a time when supernatural beings and the souls of the dead were believed to roam the earth, and people would light bonfires and wear costumes to ward off ghosts. So those young ‘trick-or-treaters’ who roll up at your front door later this month, demanding sweets with menaces, are actually playing the part of those much-feared ghosts and ghouls, in a lighthearted way. Of course Hallowe’en is widely

associated with mystery, magic and superstition, and this, too, goes back centuries. Many of the ancient October 31st rituals were about peering into the future, and many had to do with helping young women identify their future husbands. In 18th-century Ireland, for instance, a cook might bury a ring in her mashed potatoes on Halloween night, hoping to bring love to the diner who found it. Another tale said that if a young woman ate a sweet concoction made out of walnuts, hazelnuts and nutmeg before bed on Halloween night, she would dream about her future husband. And that still-popular Halloween game of apple-bobbing? Well, it was originally played as a contest to find out who would be the first to walk down the aisle. Happy bobbing!

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Local Scene

A touch of glitz & glamour at Wootton Bridge After nine months of organising and many sleepless nights, a charity ball was a huge success, raising an amount of just under £1,300. Organised by Southern Co-op’s Funeralcare in Ryde, 50 people attended the glamorous event at The Lakeside Hotel on 22 September. Held in aid of the Phoenix Project, a specialist day service for adults with learning disabilities, it is part of Southern Co-op’s community engagement programme ‘Love Your Neighbourhood’. Lesley Borton, Ryde Funeral Co-ordinator, said: “We are so grateful for everybody’s support. To have raised so much money for such a deserving charity is really special.” Next year’s charity ball has already been booked in for 7 September. To find out more about the community scheme, visit

Pictures by Jonathon Sheath More pictures available to buy online from our website:


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Local Scene

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Putting Island on the world map Everyone loves a story of ‘local boy made good’, and they don’t come much more inspiring than that of Geoff Underwood, a Newport-born, exCarisbrooke High School pupil who started his working life as a Plessey engineering apprentice and went on to found a multi-million pound tech business right here on the Island. Jackie McCarrick spoke to him and discovered a man with an insatiable thirst for life, business, fundraising, cars and sport - and an absolute passion for the Isle of Wight.

As the CEO of a company that turns over £13m a year supplying cutting-edge products to the world’s big airline operators, Geoff Underwood is well aware that it would probably make far more commercial sense for his Newport-based IFPL operation to re-locate to the West Coast of the US. Not that he’s about to do it. “I grew up on the Island” he explains, “it’s where I live, it’s a place I love, and I’m proud of the organisation and the team we have here, designing and producing everything inhouse and spending around £2.5 million a year with local

business and services.” In fact IFPL – located in smart glass-fronted headquarters at what was formerly a hang glider manufacturing plant – currently employs 70 people, many of them long-servers, and including employees number two, three and four who were in on the enterprise from its small beginnings over 20 years ago. Since then the company has carved out a global niche in developing technical in-flight products, stemming from its original plug-in headphone socket, which sells 350,000 units a year and currently has

2.5million units in service worldwide. It has twice been recognised with a Queen’s Award for Enterprise, in 2008 and 2014. So how and why such a highly specialised business? Geoff says he can trace it back to boyhood, and his instinct for ‘problem solving, and fixing things’. He explains that his grandfather, a refuse collector, would often bring home broken items that people had thrown away, and that he, Geoff, would take delight in mending them. With the encouragement of his engineer father, John - who had been recruited to the Island

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Motor racing historic Formula Ford (Merlyn)

from Portsmouth to work on the High Down rocket test site in the 1950s-60s – Geoff skipped university and went straight from school into an apprenticeship with Plessey Radar, who sponsored him to study part-time at Portsmouth Poly and subsequently promoted him to roles in several different departments. At 26, he left the Island for the adventure of spending two years working on missile systems in Florida, and then came back to work for a number of companies, including one that did inflight entertainment systems. This was to be something of a fated move, because when that company decided to pull out of the industry, Geoff instantly saw an opening to offer the design service himself.

Growing the business “I’m basically a problem-solver” says Geoff, “so I’d go into airlines, talk to people, and find out what the issues were”. This was how he


came to identify the unreliable on-board headphone sockets, which at that time would last for an average of 5,000 plug-ins, and he designed an alternative that would last 20 times longer – with clear cost-saving implications for the airlines. His first contract was to supply ‘a few hundred’ units to US company Vid-Air, and to fulfil that order, he had to call on the help of his parents and his young son to help build the units in his garage. The next contract was for 10,000 units, at which point, in 1998, he realised he had to start taking on staff – and then the orders started flowing in. Things really took off when the product was ordered for the prestigious Boeing 787 Dreamliner, and the rest, as they say, is history. Last year the company turned over £13 million and looks set to grow further, with its in-house research and development team constantly working on new products to help the airlines move towards on-board wi-

Geoff at “Welly Road” Middle School, Newport fi and contactless payment technology in the skies. Naturally proud of both his company and its Island base, Geoff has been a long-time supporter of the Isle of Wight Chamber of Commerce, and IFPL has been a member company for 20 years. He became involved with the Chamber at Board level six years ago, and is about to step down after serving a three-year term of office as President. He sees the role as one of “an influencer”, bringing the issues facing business people to the attention of local government and other agencies, and along with others, has been heavily involved in drawing up the “Vision

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“I’m basically a problem-solver, so I’d go into airlines, talk to people, and find out what the issues were.” Queens Award 2014 with HRH Prince Michael of Kent for the Isle of Wight” that aims to plan head for the next 20 years. The Chamber has also introduced an Island Ambassador scheme, drawing on people with good off- Island contacts who can use their networks and influence to encourage inward investment on the Island.

Thorny issues As he points out, top of the list of issues that still face Island businesses – especially tech companies like his own - is the fundamental difficulty in recruiting the right people. “It’s a big issue not only for us, but also for the NHS, schools and any type of specialist business” he says. “When people do come they tend to stay, because obviously they love it here – but we have several barriers to getting them in the first place. There’s that psychological barrier of the Solent and the bad press we’ve had about the cost of getting here, and then for professionals there’s the issue of our school standards which may be improving, but aren’t up to par yet”. As Geoff says, the ongoing job is to ‘sell’ the Island as a great

place to live and work as well as to visit – which will also involve dealing with issues in some of the towns that have become run-down over recent years. “If I had a magic wand, I’d put a university here” he says. “Not only would it serve our local young people, but would draw other young people here and introduce a bit more vibrancy to the Island, which, as we know, has a largely ageing population.” He is also keen to build on the Island’s traditional tourist industry by “identifying the new wave in tourism” to attract the higher-value end of the market. Meanwhile he believes that improved infrastructure such as the Gigabit internet fibre system could prove a powerful attraction for high value individuals who want to work from home.

Action Man Heading up an international business means that Geoff gets to visit some pretty exotic locations. “I travel all over the world and people say, ‘Oh, you must see this or that place’ but very often I’ll think OK, it’s all right - but it’s not much better than the Isle of Wight! “I feel absolutely spoilt to be

able to live in such a stunningly beautiful place with its outdoor lifestyle, the beaches, the watersports and the walks”. And, as something of an action man in his leisure time, Geoff has seen the Island from all angles! A long-time paraglider, he regularly soared over the Island and many other locations, for 15 years - whilst back on terra firma, he was heavily involved with Ice Hockey until the only ice rink closed down (he’s still working in the background to try to get Ice Hockey back on the Island). He also loves to be on wheels, and as well as being an enthusiastic touring motorcyclist, he also goes in for historic single-seater motor racing and has successfully competed at Silverstone and Brands Hatch in several of his stable of collector cars – at least until last year when, as he puts it, he “had a bit of a bash”. Now, he says he’s a bit more careful. “I watch the ones in their 20s and realise that I’m never going to be up there at the front end, but I do enjoy it”.

Car crazy Not surprisingly, Geoff’s

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“It’s an amazing honour to be asked, and it will be another great opportunity to engage in community and charitable work.”

Touring Norway on his motorbike

garage at home in Carisbrooke is something to behold. As well as his racing cars, which include a 1961 Formula Junior 1100cc, a 1970 Merlyn Formula Ford and a 1961 Cooper Grand Prix 1500, there’s also his collection of classic motors – all 14 of them. “I’m trying to stop buying them, but if someone’s selling a nice car I feel it would be rude of me not to buy it!” he jokes. Among the stable of motors is the 1954 Morris Minor that he bought when he was 22. “I spend a lot of my time polishing and tinkering with cars” he says. “Whilst the racing cars are taken care of by a racing team, the old classics are my therapy. Some are all in bits, but I really enjoy doing them up” Some of the cars do get to hit the road though – like the Belgian-made 1901 Delin that he took on the London-Brighton run with his son Chris, 36. During their run, the manifold fell apart – which might have been a disaster for most drivers, but


not, of course for this pair. They promptly dismantled a barbecue and used it to re-solder the joint before getting back on their way! So, with an entire collection of classic cars at his disposal, what does Geoff choose for his everyday trips? Usually, it’s his Mercedes e-class estate – although he’s also the proud owner of a “totally silent” Tesla luxury electric car.

Charity begins at home As he steps down from the President’s office at Chamber of Commerce, Geoff has a few months to prepare himself for another high profile role, as High Sheriff of the Isle of Wight from April next year. “It’s an amazing honour to be asked,” he says, “and it will be another great opportunity to engage in community and charitable work”. He has already founded one charitable organisation on the Island - the Wight Aid Foundation,

which raises funds exclusively for local charities and community groups, and makes it easier for companies to donate by handling all the admin side for them, and distributing funds on their behalf. “We sit every month and make monthly donations of between £10,000-20,000 to local organisations” says Geoff, “and I like the idea of this flow-through from business to the community that can really make a difference”. Indeed, the difference that the Wight Aid Foundation has made since it was established just two years ago amounts to £200,000 worth of donations that have helped a total of 70 charities. “From my point of view I am really pleased with that, but it’s not a massive ego thing – I just want more people in business to give more money. “Ultimately I have a passion for the Island and for making things better – and I’ve always thought that the best way to achieve that is to give a hand-up, not a hand-out.”

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Local Scene

Charity evening at Nunwell House Nunwell House, Brading, recently hosted an evening raising money for the Rainbow Trust Children’s Charity and Brading Community Partnership. Many local businesses donated or supported the event which included harp playing, an auction, raffle and a one-man performance by Charles Dickens’s great-great-grandson, Gerald Dickens. The event was a great success, and it was a lovely evening, not quite summer, but not yet autumn. The guests enjoyed the house as well as the beautiful gardens. As well as raising vital funds, which totalled over £3,000, to support families and youths on the Isle of Wight, the event helped raise muchneeded awareness of Rainbow Trust and Brading Community Partnership’s work on the Island.

Pictures by Jonathon Sheath More pictures available to buy online from our website:


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Local Scene

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Taking back ground for Island boatbuilders The demise of many of the Island’s traditional shipyards to make way for a succession of glossy new waterfront building developments is an issue that pains people like boatbuilder Sam Fulford. But rather than just sit and complain, this passionate craftsman rolled up his sleeves and put his money where his mouth is. After his business was caught up in the battle over the Medina Yard site, he made the bold decision to take on the long-unused slipway at Clarence Boatyard at East Cowes, and now, after a complete sixmonth overhaul, this historic slice of working waterfront has become the new base for his business, Wooden and Steel Ship Repairs.

Having grown up in Arctic Road, Cowes in the 1980s, it was the evocative sights and sounds of the Medina’s shipyards that provided the backdrop and soundtrack to Sam Fulford’s earliest life. His father was a boatbuilder and the young Sam spent his childhood playing on the river,


playing among the old wrecked and abandoned hulks and barges. “There were lots of interesting old boats on the river” he recalls. “To be able to row past huge North Sea fishing trawlers and light ships moored waiting for whatever might be planned, or ships built by the Souters and the

FBM shipyards, sitting there halffinished on the pile moorings at Medham, was amazing - and that was our everyday experience”. He vividly describes climbing about on the old Paddle Steamer Ryde, as well as the old wreck of the Yellowfin (she whose giant propeller now rests

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“There were lots of interesting old boats on the river. To be able to row past huge North Sea fishing trawlers and light ships moored waiting for whatever might be planned.”

opposite Newport’s Quay Arts Centre), and says they provided “a first class playground”. On his way to school in the morning, Sam would walk past the Coles Shipyard on Arctic Road, and peer over the fence to the 500 Ton slipway, seeing various ships in repair, from beautiful coasters, to the fast ferries in for repair during the Cowes Express time. “It was such an interesting and wondrous sight, it ignited one’s imagination - and it certainly inspired me. I probably didn’t even realize to what extent at the time” he says.

Launching out Never particularly academic, Sam says he could not wait to finish school. His passion was for ‘creating and fixing things’ so as soon as he left school, he went to work at Bannisters Garage in Cowes where he did an apprenticeship as a mechanic, working and training with what he describes as “an excellent team who taught me well and influenced me to the value and respect of hard work”. By the relatively tender age of 22 he had launched out

with his own garage business, in a workshop at the Coles’s old shipyard at Arctic Road, “I did OK, I was busy, but at that young age, with inexperience of such things, I found it difficult to survive the overhead costs of the business” he says. “Ultimately I was just unhappy in what I was doing and wanted a change of direction”. And that change of direction came about through buying an old wooden boat. Sam had decided he wanted a project, something totally absorbing – and he found it in the shape of a 65’ Admiralty

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“So my life was two or more weeks working 7 days, 10 hours a day in London, and then restoring MFV119 back here on the Isle of Wight until I ran out of money!” Shortly after starting the MFV119 project

type motor fishing vessel.

Labour of love The MFV119 was a WW2 boat, built for the Royal Navy for wartime use, and Sam later found out that it was the last survivor of its type used at Omaha Beach in the D-Day landings of 1944, by an

Sam Fulford


American Special Services crew, and as such, is listed in the Historic Fleet of the United Kingdom. MFV119 turned into a huge, 15-year project, which involved completely re-designing and re-building the boat, to the extent that the only remaining original part is what sits below the waterline.

“That’s often the case with wooden boats” explains Sam. “The salt water preserves the timbers while the fresh rain decays, so they rot from the top down”. To fund the project, Sam’s brother Toby supplied him with work in London, converting and refitting barges to turn them into sea-going houseboats. “So my life was two or more weeks working 7 days, 10 hours a day in London, and then restoring MFV119 back here on the Isle of Wight until I ran out of money!” Sam and Toby had such a good amount of work in London that they began to look for riverside work space, a place where they could take barges and larger boats to be repaired and fitted out - but nowhere was available. And that was when Sam started to become aware of the big squeeze on traditional boatbuilding sites: “It seemed that all the derelict riverside yards had been bought up by developers, or set aside by Government agencies for building development sites” he explains. “The places near London that were available, were totally

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Interview unsuitable - and certainly not inspiring places to work from! One must have inspiring places to work from or one’s imagination simply won’t work, and good work cannot be produced”. The result was that brother Toby bought a place in Kent, Sam headed back to the Island, and their lives went in different directions.

Island enterprise Sam started the business ‘Wooden Ship Repairs’ in July 2013, with the idea of utilizing the skills he had learned in the restoration of MFV119 – but before long, it was turned into ‘Wooden & Steel Ship Repairs’ as the need to diversify into both materials became clear. As the name suggests, the business specializes in the repair and maintenance of larger wooden and steel vessels, including everything from mast and spar repair and construction, to interior refitting and engineering. Sam now works with a group of highly skilled contractors who come in and help for tasks such as electrical works and traditional rigging, as required. The restoration of MFV119 had got Sam’s work noticed, and as a result the jobs started to come in. The greatest proportion of the work was carried out at Medina Yard, in Cowes, and it worked very well – although Sam could see that the 60 ton weight lift limit of the hoists there would be restrictive, and that if he could haul out heavier boats than any other yard, then work would surely come. A huge boost for the business came when Sam was joined by other local experts, including Justin Gardner, one of Cowes’ highly skilled boat builders with particular expertise in

Inspecting the ship

mast and spar construction. Then in September last year Sam was given what he describes as a ‘fantastic opportunity’ to take on the slipway facility in Clarence Boatyard - long-unused, and requiring a complete overhaul after over 100 years of constant heavy hard work. It was a massive undertaking, but in the face of the proposed developments at the Medina Yard site, where Sam and his colleagues had previously done most of their work, he decided to take the plunge. “The recently-agreed planning permission to build on the Medina Yard site was a clear indication that industry is being forced out” he says. “Shipyard sites are looked upon by developers and the like, with hungry eyes. In very recent times

we see a threat to the industrial work space like has never been experienced at any time. “During the war years, bombs may have been dropping from enemy aircraft, but the only result was newer and better workshops that were built to replace what was lost. Now, those who are bent on removing these yards will do so in such a way that work will never, ever be able to be carried out in Cowes again”.

Preserving history As Sam points out, it is incredible to think, that in Cowes, not one existing quay wall would exist for a vessel of any size to lay for repair works to proceed afloat, to be able to bring a crane in alongside for the removal of engines or heavy equipment, or to remove

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Interview the rig from a large yacht. “I wanted to stop that trend” he says. “I wanted to show that these unused and unwanted facilities are needed and can be bought back to life with relatively little work”. The painstaking work that he undertook along with his friend Dougal Burns and others, involved stripping the cradle right down to its component parts, which revealed that all of the 130 cast iron wheels had been worn out by 100 years of work. So, a cast iron bar 8 inches in diameter had to be meticulously sliced into three-inch segments, a hole bored through and machined to make a bearing surface, and new axles machined with grease ways for lubrication, as the river mud is no friend to rotating metal parts. Then, half of the timber backbone was replaced, with new steel work and bolts holding the whole thing together. Meanwhile, the outer sections of the cradle, that stabilize the whole thing, were repaired by

reusing the original wheels - the best of them being selected and machined to be all of equal size. New track sections had to be laid, working between the tides, but luckily when it came to the original steam-driven winch (now converted to run on electricity) that had been well-maintained and remained in fine order. “The winch was probably fitted in 1899 at the start of the original yard” says Sam. “A testament to good British engineering!” The slipway is in a historic shipyard, built by ‘Groves and Gutteridge’ in 1899, for engineers, yacht and small craft builders. It was modernized in 1930 as a completely self-contained shipyard, and in parts is still an excellent example of what a 1930’s shipyard would look like. While it’s certainly a historic yard and of great interest, says Sam, he’s adamant that “it is no museum, but a home for many excellent businesses, all working hard.

“I run the slipway as hard as it would have been in its early days” he says. “But now we have the efficiency of modern tools and materials. It’s a combination of using the old and the new which works well. I strongly believe that just because a thing is old, doesn’t mean it loses its capability of effective work”. “The younger generation should have the opportunity to learn to build and fix impressive objects such as ships. They need that ability like they need air to breathe. There are many people who may not have that creative bent, and would not understand that need, but they don’t have the right to remove the work space from those who want to work this way”. Sam’s vision is already bearing fruit, with the slipway steadily bringing in work to the business, creating jobs, preserving skills, and ultimately, supporting the Island’s heritage and economy. And that, as he says, was the whole purpose.

“The younger generation should have the opportunity to learn to build and fix impressive objects such as ships. They need that ability like they need air to breathe.” MFV119 moored in Newport Harbour


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Out & About

The wonder of Wolverton The annual Wolverton Garden Fair returned for it’s 19th year. Supporting Age UK once again, Wolverton Garden Fair is the largest garden event on the Island, attracting people from all over to partake in the fun. There were a wide range of amazing nurseries on display, from both the Island and mainland, also a chance to watch Elizabethan dancing with Passamezzo, magic from magician David Randini ,dog agility displays, classic cars and bikes, military vehicles and engine displays, and a climbing wall. Not only that, but the event was wrapped up with music from Last Orders. Over the last 10 years of supporting Age UK Isle of Wight, Wolverton has raised over £200,000, which has helped Age UK offer services to local older people that help to improve their quality of life, whatever their situation might be.

Pictures by Jonathon Sheath More pictures available to buy online from our website:


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Out & About

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Inside Business


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A happy, all-cash Christmas! We all tend to groan and roll our eyes when the shops start piling up their Christmas stock the minute the summer holidays are over – but the fact is that more and more of us are getting into the ‘shop early’ habit. According to the latest survey by stats company Statista, on the Christmas spending habits of Britons, the majority of us actually start our shopping in October – with only 24% waiting until December to make a start on festive purchases. And the main reason, it seems, is to help spread the cost. Last year the average household spend was £821, and if that is all done last-minute, and slapped on a credit card, then the January bill hitting your doormat can come as something of a New Year dampener. A bit of organisation and forward-planning can ease all that, and spreading the spending out over the three months from October to December is probably the most sensible way to do it. So – make a gift list, decide

how much you want to spend per person, and put the money to one side out of three months worth of income. In the old days it would have been a case of filling a savings jar or piggy bank, but now you could set up different savings ‘buckets’ in your bank or savings account, allocated for festive gifts, food and drink, travel and entertainment. Setting a Christmas budget now makes it easier to achieve an allcash Christmas – and having gift lists and grocery lists organized in

advance means you know exactly what you need and can take advantage of sales and seasonal specials as they pop up during the Autumn. With hand-made crafts currently enjoying something of a revival, you could even consider opting for a hand-made Christmas this year, and creating your own gifts and cards. If that’s the case, get busy as soon as the autumn evenings begin to draw in, and you could have a stash of gifts made by December.

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Out & About

Muddy Bull run The inaugural Muddy Bull Run was billed as “The ultimate team event” and was certainly a challenge for all the teams who took part. Taking place at Three Gates Farm, Calbourne, the course was challenging, enjoyable and massively muddy, especially after a few laps. Full of ups and downs, the competitors, who were all raising funds for charity, seemed to enjoy themselves, though some looked rather less impressed when down in the mud filled trenches. A great success, all who took part in the event were keen to see it go from strength to strength. A spokesman for the event said: “A great deal of time and effort has gone in to make the route both interesting and challenging and to provide the runner with the opportunity to stretch themselves physically, mentally and emotionally. Geared to team participants, the obstacles often require a joined up thinking approach and ability to work together as one, to achieve a fast and effective solution.”

Pictures by Jonathon Sheath More pictures available to buy online from our website:


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Out & About

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Wear it with pride The next few weeks will see the re-emergence of those familiar red paper poppies, adorning coats and jackets everywhere from our TV screens to workplaces, schools and the High street. Originally designed to be worn just on November 11th, remembrance poppies are now widely worn from late October until mid-November, and more than 40 million of them will be made for sale in the UK this year. But how many of us actually know the origin of this tradition? Most will grasp the connection with the poppies that sprang up on European battlefields after the bloody horrors of the First World War – but perhaps not so many are aware that the wearing of poppies can be attributed to a century-old poem. Penned in 1915 by Canadian

physician John McCrae, the poem, “In Flanders Fields” was inspired by his witnessing of the death of his friend, and describes the humble field poppies (Papaver rhoeas) that were the first flowers to grow in the churned-up earth of soldiers’ graves in Flanders. When the poppy was first adopted as a remembrance symbol in 1921, the artificial poppies for Britain’s first appeal had to be imported from France – but by the following year, the Disabled Society was awarded a grant of £2,000 from the British Legion for the employment of disabled ex-service people to make the symbolic red paper flowers here in England. The Poppy Factory was set up to make them, at a former collar factory on London’s Old Kent Road, and before long, it was employing 50 disabled veterans. By 1926, demand for the poppies had increased so much that the factory outgrew its original premises and moved on to a disused brewery in Richmond,

Surrey. Housing for the workforce and their families was built on adjacent land and in 1932 the present factory was built, and continues to this day to offer work all year round for disabled veterans and dependants. As well as making some 36 million poppies each year (a further 5 million being made at Lady Haig’s Poppy Factory in Scotland), the operation also creates wreaths, symbols and remembrance products for the Royal Family and the Royal British Legion’s annual Poppy Appeal. In recent years, celebrities have taken to wearing somewhat showy and expensive crystal-clad poppy brooches instead of the simple paper variety – and in fact the British Legion has introduced its own range of ‘bling’ poppies. It’s a move that some might argue, goes against the whole essence of the poppy, whose delicate form remains such a powerful symbol of the fragile beauty of life.

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The Victoria Lodge hotel is open all year round to offer you a warm welcome. Ferry deals are available, contact for details. Offering evening meals. Both pets and children are welcome. T: 01983 862361 5 Alexandra Rd, Shanklin, PO37 6AF



Contact us or book online via: T: 01983 852196 85 Leeson Road, Upper Bonchurch, Ventnor, PO38 1PU Facebook/Theleconfieldhotel

Evening meals available to non-residents.

T: 01983 402518 2 Royal St, Sandown, PO36 8LP

T: 01983 403485 15 Avenue Rd, Sandown, PO36 8BN




A warm welcome awaits you, only minutes from Shanklin town centre, sea front and ‘Old Village’. On-site restaurant and bar with entertainment most evenings, Wi-Fi throughout. Call for discounted ferry tickets with your room.

Receive a warm welcome at the Gracellie Hotel, with modern en-suite rooms and plenty of amenities. Start the day with a traditional English breakfast, and enjoy a varied dinner menu in the evening. Free WiFi access.

The Wheatsheaf can be found in St Thomas Square, Newport. Original features. A top-notch dining experience for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Cosy en-suite rooms and a very warm welcome.

T: 01983 862101 9 Queens Road Shanklin, PO37 6AR

T: 01983 863243 25-27 Hope Rd, Shanklin, PO37 6ED


T: 01983 530777 16 St Thomas Square, Newport, PO30 1SG


Grange Farm sleeps eight, with two ensuite bedrooms and family suite. Includes two sitting rooms and large kitchen diner. Large garden & 50 acres woodland. Red Squirrel Lodge is a new three bedroom build with facilities for the less mobile, kitchen / living area & covered veranda.

Please visit the website for more information and booking.

Offers contemporary dining and a bar with free Wi-Fi. The rooms are festooned with period charm and each benefits from either an en-suite or private external bathroom.

T: 01983 882147 Grange Farm, Staplers Road, Wootton Bridge, PO33 4RW

T: 01983 822994 33 Lugley St, Newport, PO30 5ET


Full catering, bar, free WiFi. Parking available for 20 vehicles.

Friendly family run guesthouse in prime location 200m from Sandown beach. OPEN ALL YEAR. Delicious breakfasts. Eight comfortable guestrooms. Call for our best prices and winter offers.

We are an idyllic base for walks on coastal paths or St Boniface Down without the need to use the car.

Amenities include off road parking, a cycle store and drying facilities.

An excellent venue for your next event. With 40 en-suite Guest Bedrooms, the Hotel features a large restaurant and lounge, with a 100 guest capacity.

2019 dates available. Contact us now for full details.

Situated in a rural location one mile from Ventnor and two miles from Shanklin with a stop on the main No 3 bus route outside. You can enjoy panoramic sea views from most rooms, the breakfast room and conservatory.



The Caledon Guest House in Cowes, is a peaceful, welcoming B&B. It is beautifully decorated with spacious rooms and amazing views. Enjoy a great breakfast with locally sourced produce and friendly, helpful service with a smile. The Caledon is conveniently located only a short walk from the heart of West Cowes and the Red Jet ferry, but far enough away to enjoy some peace and quiet during your stay. A real home away from home. T: 01983 293599 59 Mill Hill Road, Cowes, PO31 7EG

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Out & About

Electric woods light up Robin Hill Inspired by Diwali, immerse yourself in colour at Robin Hill’s Electric Woods this Autumn. As night falls, discover the lush colours, flavours and sounds of the Asian subcontinent spring up around you as you embark on a spirited journey through Indian inspired experiences. This year also brings a new adventure, Jungle Heights, which will involve LED lighting, smoke machines and an exciting soundtrack that immerse participants in energetic, jungle inspired fun. Take time to enjoy the authentic Indian menu of curries and kebabs, Asian sweet treats and traditional teas, providing a true taste of India.

Pictures by Jonathon Sheath More pictures available to buy online from our website:

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‘unsung’ The


Lying on the south eastern side of the Caribbean, and washed on one side by the Atlantic Ocean and the other by the Caribbean Sea, is the beautiful, unassuming Island of Grenada. This jewel of an island is one not to be missed if you are visiting the Caribbean. Having now visited three times in the last five years, I always leave with a certain regret, and a powerful desire to return. The Island boasts the first underwater sculpture park which was designed by Jason deCaires Taylor as a marine habitat, and created post-hurricane Ivan. It now offers to divers and snorkelers from all over the world a unique experience of the most wonderful variety of vibrant fish and corals, along with a stunning underwater collection of sculptures, reflecting the Island’s legends and history, and added to periodically by local artists. This is located just five minutes from one of the Island’s most picturesque and

beautiful beaches, known as Grand Anse, and the sculpture park and facility was named by National Geographic as one of the top 25 wonders of the world. Widely known as “the Island of Spice”, it is not surprising that Grenada’s capital, St. Georges, is home to a huge spice market, selling a wide range of locallygrown crops and spices. For holidaymakers, Grenada boasts some of the best beaches which never seem to be crowded, and although the beaches are public, no shoreline buildings

By Terry Willey are allowed to be taller than the tallest palm tree. Lush Levera beach on the northern tip provides dramatic views of the Atlantic Ocean and a sailing trip around the Island - which is not to be missed - offers the exhilaration of experiencing the variance between the Caribbean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean. In recent years, luxury allinclusive hotels have emerged, offering their guests tailored tours of the Island and then returning them to their havens of relaxation. Interestingly, unlike

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other holiday destinations, the planners have ensured that these remain inconspicuous and do not mar the landscape. The culture in Grenada incorporates a blend of African, French and British, with West African influences especially found in the food and music of the sister island, Carriacou. Many place names are French and some dialect words can be traced back to the time of the French rule. Initially inhabited by Caribs when Europeans arrived, Grenada thereafter was passed between French and British rule until it was ceded to Britain in 1763. The most famous of all the crops on the Island is nutmeg, and the fact that Grenada is the world’s largest nutmeg producer can be seen represented on its national flag. Independence was finally declared in February 1974, a revolutionary Government took control in 1979, and in then1983 a second coup prompted intervention by the USA, when Constitutional Government was reinstated. In September 2004,


hurricane Ivan hit the island causing loss of life and severe damage – an extremely rare occurrence since the Island sits south of the hurricane belt, and so rarely experiences such extremes of weather. There is so much to do and to see on the island in addition to just simply relaxing and enjoying the stunning scenery and beautiful unspoilt beaches. Cocoa and chocolate production is widespread, and there is now a total of five ‘tree to bar’ cocoa producers on Grenada. The first was the Grenadian Chocolate Company founded in 1999. The big annual Chocolate Fest is celebrating its sixth year in May 2019, and would be well worth a visit. Visitors can spend a day on a cocoa farm, tasting cocoa direct from the tree, followed by a journey from harvest to fermentation and drying to the chocolate making itself, and then head off to the Belmont Estate to see the Cocoa Estate Factory. Grenada Chocolate Company recently opened a new Bon Bon Boutique by

its factory in Hermitage. Like many of the Caribbean islands, Grenada also boasts excellent rum, there being three distillers on the Island that have remained pretty much unchanged since their construction in the 18th century. Sugar cane and water from its fields make the rum, and the distillery is run by a watermill. Tours and tastings are free. If you are looking for spices, then Grenada is one of the finest places in the world to find them, with an amazingly wide variety that includes nutmeg, mace, cinnamon, ginger, allspice and pimento, all grown by local farmers and families and on sale islandwide. You will also find nutmeg in many of the local recipes, from salad dressings to ice cream, and it is usually grated on top of a rum punch.

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“There is so much to do and to see on the Island in addition to just simply relaxing and enjoying the stunning scenery and beautiful unspoilt beaches.” Above all, the Grenadian people are very special and always offer an exceptionally warm and friendly welcome to visitors. They are justifiably proud of their island’s reputation as a safe and authentic place to visit and enjoy a stay. I am sure, like me, that once you have tasted this “unsung island” you too will want to return!

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Out & About

A storm of colour Porchfield Cricket Club recently held it’s annual Fun Day, with the centrepiece event being the powder run. Raising over £2,000 for Age UK Isle of Wight, the powder run made for a colourful sight with all the runners becoming a rainbow of colour by the end of the event. The run was supported by Red Squirrel Property Ltd, NFU Mutual, Wight Home Care and Wheelers Solicitors. The other attractions of the Fun Day included funfair games, a bake sale, a bouncy castle, stalls, skittles and a BBQ, plus much more.

Pictures by Jonathon Sheath More pictures available to buy online from our website:


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Out & About

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Classic Bikes on display A beautiful display of bikes was put on by the Vintage Motorcycle Club when they held their Scurry in Newport’s St Thomas Square. This was just one part of a four day event held on the Island. Growing from it’s start back in the late 1940s the club now has over 15,000 members all across the world, who get together for day trip adventures, excursions and scurries. Member Roger Tweedy explained that the club has 50 members on the Island and the event saw a great showing of both vintage and classic bikes as well as models from the mid 1930s.

Pictures by Jonathon Sheath More pictures available to buy online from our website:


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Out & About

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ASK THE EXPERTS: AUCTIONEERS CORNER Warren and Rex have been auctioning and valuing for over 40 years in total and as a forward looking business are now ready to try and take on the next generation of staff to shape the future. Warren says “This business is such a varied and interesting one, to ensure the future has the personnel with the skill set and character to go forward we have decided to advertise for a trainee auctioneer & valuer. “I left the Royal Navy to come into the family business back in the 90s and then started my journey of learning about Antiques & Collectables. On that journey I met Rex who was already a renowned Antique Dealer and eventually he left dealing to become an Auctioneer & Valuer. “It’s all about preparing for the future, this industry takes time to build up the knowledge base, skills and nature to deal with anything from deceased estates to a rowdy room when you are on the rostrum.”

AUCTION SUMMARY September Auctions proved very lively, interesting and full of surprises. Director Warren Riches says, “the sale was packed with quality, just the right amount of variation and fresh-to-the-market lots”. With a fine coin collection making over £10,000 in total, and a classic Mercedes car going for over £15,000 there was interest online, on the phone and in the rooms.

A first for the auction rooms was an old Yeomans of the Guard uniform, sold to a German collector for over £1200. A selection of local Norman Wilkinson watercolours made over £2,000, whilst four unusual Hungarian watercolours made over £3,500. A vintage Rolex watch created much interest as always, selling for £1,600.

HRD auction rooms held their outdoor sale as usual at Arreton with the weather for once fine and sunny. The lot variation was its usual random and interesting amount, with anything from a MG Convertible to a cow feeder! The buyers flocked in

and this was helped by the weather, range of lots and the refreshments. Warren said “It is almost a social event people look forward to! For us at the auction rooms it is an opportunity to get the team out and about.”


Yeoman uniform Sold for over £1,200

Wilkinson watercolours Sold for over £2,000

Hungarian watercolours Sold for over £3,500

Vintage Rolex Sold for £1,600

Coin collection Sold for over £10,000

Classic Mercedes Sold for over 15,000

Antiques & Collectables Modern & Vintage Brading Auction Rooms Quay Lane, Brading, Sandown Isle of Wight, PO36 0AT T: 01983 402222 E:

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Quick fixes for winter colour After a stunner of a summer during which gardens have looked at their most glorious, the onset of autumn and winter can feel like a bleak, downer of a time in our outdoor spaces.

Many gardens after October can start to look rather dog-eared and colourless, with all those empty borders and drifting piles of windblown leaves, so it can be tempting just to shut the door on it all until next spring.


However, it doesn’t have to be like that. There are plenty of quick fixes to ensure that you enjoy colour and texture in the garden right through the winter. The simplest solution is to invest in some hardy winter bedding

plants, and plant them into all those bare spots in your flower beds, as well as using them to fill troughs, urns, baskets and other containers to brighten up your exterior space. Probably the most popular

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Gardening bedding plant choice for instant colour is the cheerful Pansy, with its flowers that almost seem to smile. A stalwart of winter bedding displays, the Pansy will bloom for far longer than most others, producing a seemingly endless rainbow of blues, purples, yellows, oranges and reds. Just make sure you dead-head the plants regularly and they will flower pretty much continuously. There’s also the Pansy’s slightly smaller cousin, the Viola, which produces masses of daintier flowers and comes in upright varieties that are ideal for planting in pots or beds, as well as trailing varieties that look fabulous in hanging baskets and urns. Other popular winter bedders include Primrose and Polyanthus, sweetly-scented wallflowers and delicate little Cyclamens, which will fill your garden with colour even on the dullest of January and February days. As a more subtle kind of winter-flowering bedding plant, Cyclamen’s dainty pink and white flowers and pretty marbled leaves look good teamed with snowdrops, evergreen grasses, boxwood and trailing ivy. The Royal Horticultural Society’s advice on creating interest in the garden through the winter is to aim for scent, berries, coloured

stems and dramatic, evergreen foliage. But remember that evergreens don’t necessarily have to be green! You can include some more unusual leaf colours such as blue spruce, Juniper Blue Star or yellow and gold conifers. Frilly pink ornamental cabbages look great in containers while photinia and euonymous will light up borders. You can also try berry-bearing shrubs like holly, cotoneaster and pyracantha, to add vibrant

splashes of winter colour. Among the most useful perennials to include in your garden for winter colour and texture, there’s winter-flowering heather which comes with pink, white or purple flowers; evergreen viburnums with their lovely little clusters of flowers; and Mahonia, a range of evergreen shrubs commonly known as barberry, with sunny yellow flower spires that rise out of rich green leaves.

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THE CHILL OF AUTUMN by Matt Noyce, Head Gardener at Quarr Abbey In contrast to the extreme weather we were having just a few months ago, the autumn chill has now begun. The leaves are changing colour and falling, creating a multi coloured carpet where foraging birds and other wildlife can be seen flitting about. Many of the leaf colours are akin to the hue of the brickwork of the Abbey Church. Within the gardens and grounds of Quarr Abbey, we now see the shift of workload. Moving away somewhat from the intensive vegetable plot and ornamental areas and starting to focus on the wider estate. Hedges are being cut now without the worry of disturbing nesting birds. Also, you can be sure that the deciduous hedges are entering dormancy so won’t put on any more growth until the next growing season in spring. Although growth is also slowing down in the vegetable plot, there is still produce to harvest. Time is spent bringing in our squashes, pumpkins and patty pans. These create a really colourful display in the farm shop at a time when most plants are fading. Potatoes are being lifted along with other root crops that may be more susceptible to pest damage and

rotting off if left in the cool damp soil. We dry store our onions to use as we need them. The apple harvest doesn’t seem to have been as good as last year, but maybe that is to be expected as last year was a bumper crop. There seems to be a natural fluctuation between great years and good years. The apples that have been harvested are being stored in the abbey for use by the community and their guests. In the borders, herbaceous foliage that is dying back is being cut and removed to tidy areas but it is important to leave some seasonal interest, such as grasses and rose hips, which also act as autumn and winter food for resident birds. The bees are currently being put to bed for winter. The hives are checked to see that they have enough food stores until their next ‘feed’ at around Christmas time. I can now announce the fantastic news that one of our trees, the Quarr Abbey Oak, has been shortlisted as a contender for ‘Tree of The Year 2018’. The competition is run by the Woodland Trust and voting for our Oak tree can be carried out on their website It would be a treemendous honour to win this marvellous accolade! Pictures by Matt Noyce.

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Country Life

w Photo: Dormouse by Danny Green 2020 Vision

Snug as a bug By Lianne de Mello, Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust

Shortening day length and dropping temperatures are the signal for many species to go into torpor, a period of sleep. Their hibernation can vary from a few days to several months to avoid the winter. Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, working for a better future for wildlife and wild places in Hampshire and the Island. Phone: 01489 774 400

E-mail: Website:


Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, Beechcroft House, Vicarage Lane, Curdridge, Hampshire, SO32 2DP

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Join us today and enjoy the benefits of being a member of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust:

• Unlimited visits to 57 wildlife reserves in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight and 2,500 reserves nationwide. • A welcome pack when you join. • Wildlife, Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust’s magazine, delivered to you three times a year. • The chance to take part in local group and community activities, offering you a variety of opportunities to be involved in. More than 350 walks, talks and events throughout the two counties. • Join by Direct Debit & receive your FREE full colour Local Wildlife Reserve Guide.

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Country Life

Many animals hibernate, including reptiles, newts, insects (such as ladybirds and queen bumblebees), bats and dormice. It helps them conserve energy as food becomes harder to find over the winter months - they use less energy by slowing everything down, such as heart, breathing and metabolic rate. For example a dormouse will drop its heart and breathing rate by around 90% while in hibernation. However, not all animals remain asleep for the whole of the winter. Bats for example will move around on warmer evenings to find food or to move position within a roost, whereas a dormouse rarely wakes up from its deep slumber until the leaves are back on the trees in spring.

The ideal spot for hibernating is usually somewhere that will not be disturbed, where the temperature will remain stable no matter what is happening outside, and often humid places to avoid dehydration while they are asleep. Like us, many animals lose water through breathing, so need to take care during hibernation. The sorts of places they look

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for are around log and rock piles. These are ideal hidey holes for amphibians and reptiles, which will often find a nice safe place buried in the middle to spend the winter. Dormice are typically found in the bottom of coppice stools, so try not to disturb areas of woodland where dormice may be dozing. Hedgehogs often build a nest

of loose material which can often just look like piles of dead leaves under shrubs and hedges. Meanwhile bats may be found in cellars or outbuildings, squeezed in to any suitable gap like where mortar has fallen out between brick work. But it’s not just outside where you should keep your eyes open, ladybirds can often be found indoors, for example making use of gaps around our window frames and doors. Don’t forget that not all animals hibernate - some just become less active, like badgers, while others can still be seen daily including birds. You can help these animals make it through the winter by leaving out fresh water (don’t forget to check it isn’t frozen each morning!) and food, to help keep them going through the winter. Remember it can be risky for animals to be woken up before they are ready, as it uses a lot of energy. For this reason warm winters can confuse hibernating animals, and risks them starving. If you find a hibernating animal, put them back where you found them as quickly as possible.


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Countryside news By Tony Ridd

Conserving Treefields Pond Local people will have the chance to help conserve the inhabitants of a historic wildlife pond on Friday 26 October 2018 from 11am -1pm. Volunteers from Southern Water will be lending a hand as part of an ongoing project to conserve community wildlife ponds on the Island. We like to think of old ponds as being natural features – but in fact, most of the 340,000 or so ponds in England and Wales are artificial. The same is true of the historic Treefields Pond, situated on the north side of the Binstead Road on the northwest outskirts of Ryde. This pond, hidden behind trees and shrubs on the edge of Southern Housing Groups’ Treefields Estate, is one of the few of Ryde’s ponds to survive into the modern age. The town’s old ponds have long since disappeared under the rapid pace of development, which engulfed


the area in Victorian times and has continued ever since. The pond at Treefields is at the junction of the picturesque Spencer Road and the ancient Binstead Road. From earliest times, tracks were routed to take advantage of natural watering places. Springs or damp hollows developed into ponds caused by trampling from livestock or by human endeavour. Many man-made ponds were situated next to a road which acts as a catchment, providing some run-off water. These roadside ponds would be used for the watering of cattle on the way to market and for horses. This man-made pond is not fed by a spring but by rainwater. As with many old ponds it is dug into the natural clay. Even during the recent drought it remained half-full, still doing its job of holding water at least 150 years after its creation. Winter is the ideal time to care

for and manage ponds, as action during the breeding season and summer can harm creatures. Local Pond Wardens and experts from The Footprint Trust’ ecology management team, are on hand and are always looking to recruit local people who wish to help care for this and other historic ponds. Today Treefields pond is owned by the Southern Housing Group. Thanks to the partnership with The Footprint Trust and its pond wardens, it supports a wide range of wildlife, including dragonflies, newts and frogs. It is a small remnant of Ryde’s rural past, and recent surveys have revealed that it is doing very well – with a good diversity of wildlife. For more details please contact Ray at The Footprint Trust on 01983 822282.

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Country Life Discovery Bay Become a Bayologist and celebrate National Biology Week and Earth Science Week in Discovery Bay with a day packed full of life science activities for all ages. You can try out the powerful microscopes, sieve for life in the soil, fire up the mighty bug hoover, dip for pondlife and fill up the wildlife aquarium, and marvel at the mole-in-a-jar! The Bay science team from Arc, Artecology, The Common Space, Dinosaur Isle and The National Poo Museum will all be there, and it’s free for all the family! So head over and take part in the discovery in the Education Room, Dinosaur Isle, Culver Parade, Sandown PO36 8QA. You can follow on: Facebook: Shaping The Bay. Instagram: Arc.Ways, or for more information on Discovery Bay, email

Harvest festival IW Coppice group The Isle of Wight Coppice Group, launched at this year’s County Show, has been set up by Island woodland workers to promote the sustainable management of Isle of Wight coppice woodlands. Membership is open to anyone who shares an interest in coppice management and supports their broad aims to: • Increase the area of Isle of Wight woodland under sustainable coppice management. • Support those involved in producing coppice products on the Isle of Wight. • Promote the environmental, social and economic benefits of coppicing. • Increase the market for coppice products on the Isle of Wight. • Provide opportunities for those wanting to learn coppice crafts and woodland skills. The Group is affiliated to the National Coppice Federation. If you would like to join the IWCG, a subscription for the grand sum of £2 for membership of the Nc Fed, with all its associated benefits (see ) would need to be paid. If you would like to become a member of the Isle of Wight group and be on our mailing list, please e-mail Geoff Mason who is currently acting as membership coordinator on There’s also a Facebook page, iowcoppicegroup.

The Coppins Community Food Forest met at the end of September with a successful day spent harvesting their fruit and veg, which they offer and distribute free of charge. The Coppins Community Food Forest group is independent from, but works in partnership with the Church on the Roundabout (who have responsibility for Barton Green) and the IW Foodbank, using the church as a distribution centre. They meet monthly for a garden work session on the second Saturday of the month 10am til 1pm. Volunteer help is always welcome especially as they would like to move the project forward. Donations of plants (particularly herbs) and garden tools are always appreciated - Find them on Facebook or email

LANDSCAPE THERAPY Bare-rooted tree and shrub nursery. Fruit trees, tree guards, canes and stakes. Woodland and hedgerow planting and management.

LANDSCAPE & COUNTRYSIDE SPECIALIST Tel: 01983 760011 Mob: 07966 292334

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Photo: Carrion Crow


Corvid confusion By Alice Ashcroft, Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust

Is it a rook, raven or crow? The three all-black corvids cause a common ID challenge but they can be identified by their size, shape and calls.

Corvids tend to have strong social groups and communities. Crows for example, often mate for life and are co-operative breeders, meaning other adults in the family help with rearing offspring. They are considered among


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the most intelligent of birds, with magpies having demonstrated self-awareness in mirror tests, and crows and rooks showing their ability making and using simple tools. Here’s a brief guide from your

local Wildlife Trust to our all-black corvids and some useful tips on how to identify them.

Carrion Crow

Carrion crows (Corvus corone) are widespread throughout the

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Country Life

UK. They are scavengers by nature and seek out carrion, as their name suggests. They also eat insects, earthworms, small mammals, amphibians, food scraps and are known to steal eggs.

Carrion crows can be distinguished from other corvids by their tidy black plumage, black bill, square tail and hoarse ‘caw’ sound, usually repeated three times. Unlike rooks, they do not have ‘feathery trousers’ on their legs and are much smaller than ravens.


Rooks (Corvus frugilegus) are often seen together in groups known as rookeries. The male courts the female with a display of strutting, bowing and cawing; once they mate, between three to five eggs are laid. Rooks differ from crows by a pale, straighter bill with a bare grey bill base. They display ‘feathery trousers’ on their legs and have an oily, loose plumage compared to crows. However, young rooks have fully feathered faces so can be mistaken for crows. In flight, rooks have longer wings than crows

Photo: Rook

which narrow towards the body and a long graduated tail.


Ravens (Corvus corax) are much larger than other corvids – a similar size to buzzards. Ravens mainly breed in rural areas in the west and the north of the UK but are expanding their range eastward. Most birds are resident and have a distinctive deep, gravelly call or ‘cronk’. Ravens pair for life;

males perform breeding displays of posturing, preening and bill caressing, and females lay four to six blue-green eggs in a nest of twigs and moss. Their plumage is black and they have a strong, heavy bill and throat feathers. Ravens have long broad wings in flight, well-fingered wing tips and a diamond-shaped tail. Their wing beat is very slow and purposeful.

Photo: A Raven at the Tower of London

Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, working for a better future for wildlife and wild places in Hampshire and the Island. Phone: 01489 774 400

E-mail: Website:

Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust, Beechcroft House, Vicarage Lane, Curdridge, Hampshire, SO32 2DP

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Join us today and enjoy the benefits of being a member of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust: • Unlimited visits to 57 wildlife reserves in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight and 2,500 reserves nationwide. • A welcome pack when you join. • Wildlife, Hampshire & Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust’s magazine, delivered to you three times a year. • The chance to take part in local group and community activities, offering you a variety of opportunities to be involved in. More than 350 walks, talks and events throughout the two counties. • Join by Direct Debit & receive your FREE full colour Local Wildlife Reserve Guide.


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Country Life

Photo: Common Lizard by Ross Hoddinott 2020 Vision

10 things you didn’t know about

Common lizards


The common lizard is our most widespread reptile, one of only two ‘legged’ lizards in the UK.


Common lizards are variable in colour, but are usually brownish-grey, often with rows of darker spots or stripes down the back and sides. Males have bright yellow or orange undersides with spots, while females have paler, plain bellies.



If threatened by a predator, the common lizard will shed its tail to distract the attacker and make a quick getaway. This leaves a scar, but the lizard can regrow its tail, although it is usually shorter than the original.



Common lizards hibernate through the winter, usually beneath piles of rocks or logs, or in small burrows under the ground. Common lizards can lay eggs and ‘give birth’ to live young; the young can hatch inside their mother and emerge as fully formed lizards. They lay eggs in warm climates, and deliver live young in cold ones.


Common lizards are diurnal animals, meaning they sleep at night and are active during the day.


Sadly, there appears to be a decline in the population of UK common lizards. For this

reason, they are listed on the UK Biodiversity Action Plan. 8.

Adults emerge from hibernation in spring, mate in April and May, and produce three to eleven young in July.


Common lizards are sunseekers, and can often be found sunbathing in warm weather.

10. The common lizard feeds on invertebrates, mostly small insects, spiders and small snails. The lizard shakes its prey in its jaws before chewing it and swallowing it whole. Discover more with your local Wildlife Trust:

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Ploughing through the rain to victory The IW County Ploughing Match was hit by a torrential downpour this September, but that didn’t stop both spectators and ploughers from enjoying the event at Atherfield Farm, Chale, held there with the kind permission of Mrs Ann Henton. Ricky Attrill put on a sterling display and was awarded the IW County Ploughing Match Open Championship Trophy. Not only that, but he also won an award for best kept modern tractor, and The Roy Kingswell Perpetual Challenge Cup for the Best Work by a Match Plough. Other events included The Ryland-Short Challenge Trophy - Young Competitors Class won by Mr Ealey, and the NFU Mutual Finance Cup - Best Work Done by a General Purpose Plough, won by Mr Slocombe. Ploughing matches are a tradition of the agricultural calendar that span back to the 1800s. Then they were a means to prove the most skillful farm worker, and could lead to a better job in the autumn! These days, the winner earns the right to represent the Isle of Wight at the National Ploughing Championships. The winner of this goes on to represent Great Britain at the World Ploughing Championships.

Above: Ploughing match winner Ricky Attrill

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Equestrian goodies Masta Fieldmasta fixed neck tournout rug This award winning rug has many features to keep your horse warm and comfortable this winter. Made from tough 600 denier polyester with reinforced 1200 denier ripstop polyester sections where needed. Fully waterproof and breathable. Articulated full neck design.

Equetech Dinky Rider Unicorn fleece and headband Lovely fun unicorn printed fleece and headband. Designed specifically for the younger rider with a pull over envelope style collar, easy to fit a head through.

LeMieux Bandages, Square & Fly Hood

Ariat Langdale boots

A matching colour set of LeMieux products. The LeMieux Luxury Polo Bandages are made from high quality fleece to avoid pilling. The LeMieux Signature Fly Hood is handmade from two styles of closeknit crochet with comfortable high density fabric ears. The classic Close-Contact cut luxury suede square from Le Mieux is designed to fit a wide range of more forward cut jumping saddles.

Waterproof leather boots with suede detailing and gold buckle. Laces at back of shaft for adjusting the width. Designed with Ariat 4LR™ technology. Duratread sole designed to fit stirrup.

All this and more is available in a variety of colours from Froghill of Sandford, Godshill, PO38 3AN. Tel: 01983 840205.


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Over the hot summer months we have been holding a series of jumping and dressage clinics at home, and these have proved very popular.

cover and most are related to others. Discussion is a big part of teaching and hopefully by me explaining what I saw and how to improve things will help.

Teaching a certain theme or subject is a little different to my daily one-to-one lessons. Keeping the groups small, with no more than four participants, meant I was able to take more time to explain and work through exercises, and hopefully to get across the fact that there is so much to learn. Sometimes we just go through the motions and never ask ‘why?’ I enjoy this way of teaching and going back to the basics and

actually training, the reasons we do this is to help in the overall outcome. In the clinics, we worked on subjects such as gymnastic gridwork for agility and rider position, how to ride related distances and courses and on the flat, how to ride certain movements and ride a simple dressage test. There are so many more subjects to

As the lessons progressed I could see riders and horses improving just from their understanding of what they were trying to achieve. You never stop learning, and a good rider is one who opens their mind to learning and develops a natural feel for the horse. It was good to see some new horse and rider combinations coming along to take part, and we shall continue to hold these clinics through the winter months, weather permitting. Robert Booth is an equine trainer for Rodgebrook Horses. Visit or telephone 01983 521870.

Training your horse: Improving the canter The canter is a three-beat stride with a moment of suspension when no feet are on the ground.

RODGEBROOK HORSES Excellent purpose built facilities, Newport area for full, breaking, schooling, sale and competition preparation livery.

The aim is to create more air time in the moment of suspension, to get more jump and balance in the canter. The rider must learn to feel the three beats and apply a half halt as the horse is on the third beat, with the horse’s inside foreleg on the ground ready to rock back and push up into his next

Tuition by Robert Booth BHSI experienced Accredited Professional Coach. Group or individual lessons on your own horses here or your home, all levels and disciplines.

stride. How often you do this will depend on the quality of the horse’s paces.

Regular courses throughout the year

Tel: 01983 521870

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Equestrian goodies Likit refills The Likit refill is designed to be used with the Likit holder or Boredom Breaker. Perfect for keeping your horse occupied in his stable, they’ll love the range of flavours!

Hy5 Extreme reflective softshell gloves Shires Halter These eye popping colours characterise these zesty headcollars from Shires. Featuring cushioned, anti-chafe padding on the fully adjustable noseband and headband for a comfortable, customised fit. Made from durable nylon web with a clip on rolled throatlash and chunky fittings.


Don’t get caught out in the dark with these fantastic softshell gloves. The safety conscious design features a soft grip palm with reflective detail around the index finger and across the knuckle for added visibility.

Advent Calendars for horses A fun advent calendar packed with 24 individual opening windows, each containing a delicious carob and peppermint flavoured treat. Great for sharing as each treat is breakable into four smaller treats. Featuring a seasonal decorative design, your horse or pony will love the annual count down to Christmas as much as you.

All this and more is available from Trumor Feeds. You can find them at Forest Road, Newport, PO30 4LY. Call 01983 521690 or you can find them on Facebook as TrumorFeeds

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Fancy dressage at Kingates The end of September saw Kingates Equestrian hold its last show of 2018, a fun dressage competition where competitors were allowed to wear matchy matchy sets (coloured saddle pads and bandages) and fancy dress. The classes were still judged under the usual dressage rules with the exception of the attire being their choice. A pairs class was also held where competitors would make up their own test and create a theme with their fancy dress. It was a great day and nice to finish off the season with a bit of fun. Dawn and everyone at Kingates are now looking forward to the 2019 show season.

Pictures by Dawn Norris

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Smashing start to the season Mark and Kathy Domaille were the very generous hosts of the Opening Meet of the sixth season of the IW Farmer’s Bloodhounds, at their beautiful Godshill Park Farm. Always a popular place, over 30 riders and a great crowd of foot followers enjoyed a warm welcome. Despite a very wet and windy morning, the clouds parted to give way to the sun and a great day out with friends and the Bloodhound family, who followed 10½ couple of enthusiastic bloodhounds, nowadays all homebred, over some of the Island’s best countryside. After three hours of fun riding and good camaraderie, the field gathered at the horseboxes for an excellent tea and homemade cake as is the Bloodhounds’ tradition. What a smashing start to what promises to be another great season.

Pictures by Andy Thearle


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New challenge for eventers Recently the Pony Club held their Eventers Challenge, it was a super friendly event which they hope to run annually as the feedback was very positive. It consisted of a course of mixed fences being showjumps and rustic fixed, spread across two fields, with the winner being the one closest to the optimum time. The winner of the first two classes went to the same pony, Peanut, ridden by Carole Lyth in the first class and then her daughter Meg Lyth in the second class.

Pictures by Kev Cant


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– ARE BADGERS EATING THE ISLAND’S HEDGEHOGS? By Sam Biles, Managing Director of country Estate Agents Biles & Co If you asked the average person if they liked badgers the answer would probably be ‘yes’; if you also asked them if they liked hedgehogs the answer would also probably be positive. It is in vogue to love animals, especially mammals – and why not? They look cute, and cuddly – especially when young with their big eyes and soft fur. Loving animals shows that you are a caring person, however, to quote the Island’s own Poet Laureate, Tennyson nature is often ‘red in tooth and claw’ - it is an uncomfortable fact that some animals eat other animals and badgers eat hedgehogs. There are more badgers about than a few years ago and there are fewer hedgehogs–this simplistic statement ignores other causes of Mrs Tiggywinkle’s decline such as busier roads and reduced habitat, but when did you last see a squashed hedgehog on an

Island road? The sight of a roadside badger scuttling along in the headlights at night is now common as is that of a bloodied heap of grey fur at the side of the road. It may not only be the fact that badgers eat hedgehogs but that they also compete for their food – both love earthworms. A 2009 Royal Holloway study showed close geographical links between the presence of badgers and falling hedgehog numbers. Badgers and their setts were protected in 1992 since when the population has soared. Badgers are not native to the Island as noted by Sir Richard Worsley in 1781 but were introduced in the 19th century. The Island is currently relatively free from Bovine TB though here have been some individual cases in imported cattle. In the West Country and other areas where Bovine TB is endemic in the badger population it has proved very difficult to control

without large scale badger culling which is a very emotive issue. Conservation is a complex matter – it implies some positive management of nature by man but poses a real dilemma when the protection of a species much loved by the public leads to a population imbalance which adversely effects another adored species. It’s perhaps easier when rats need to be eradicated from a Pacific island to save rare flightless birds. There are no easy answers to this situation.

COUNTRYSIDE TIP You don’t need to wait for the first frost to pick your sloes for sloe gin, or prick each one to release the juice – pick them when they are abundant and freeze them on trays, this will soften the hard fruit and split the skins allowing the juice to seep out into the gin.

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Hope for Pandora Island Referrals, the Island’s only veterinary specialists, came to the rescue of a beautiful, young Labrador called Pandora. ‘Dora’ as she is called, was born with her main artery (aorta) on the wrong side, trapping her gullet in a tight band of tissue and meaning that any solid food that she ate (such as apples from her garden) would get stuck and come back up. “She’s a Labrador so this was happening a lot” said Dora’s family. “When we heard of Island Referrals, it gave us hope”. Specialist surgeon Ian and


his team performed a rare procedure involving open chest surgery. The anaesthetic team controlled her breathing, whilst Ian nudged her beating heart gently to one side and cut the tight band. After an overnight stay, she was able to go back home the next day. Only weeks later Dora’s family reported that she is now a thriving, happy ‘normal’ puppy. “We are so grateful to Island Referrals for giving our rescue dog a fantastic quality of life - which for a Labrador is food-driven!” If you would like to discuss your pet’s problem with a specialist, simply ask your vet to refer you to Island Referrals or visit

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Four legged fun at dog show The Leverets held their annual Fun Day in conjunction with Porchfield Cricket Club on Saturday 15th September. The afternoon included the popular Fun Dog Show, judged by Mr Nick Williams. This is always well supported but even more so this year as the weather was warm and sunny. Rosettes were given to fourth place with first place winners also receiving a goody bag kindly donated by Pets with Hart. The champion dog or bitch went to Sonia, a rescue bitch, owned by Debbie Ware. A new event held this year was a Hobby Horse Show organised by Sian and Lynn Dyer. Classes included show jumping and gymkhana games. Two special classes were for the Best Decorated and Best Homemade Hobby Horses. Jill Broomfield kindly judged these classes and the winners went home with vouchers donated by Froghill Tack. The Leveret tent was kept busy with refreshments and homemade cakes, along with the bar and BBQ all in the beautiful surrounds of the well tended cricket grounds. The Leverets thank Porchfield Cricket Club for letting them be part of this event and to Kev Cant for being their photographer for the day.

Pictures by Kev Cant

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Fashion, health & beauty

Why your teeth can move... James Spence from James Spence & Colleagues Dental Surgery in Ryde discusses Acute Gum Disease and why teeth can move.

This case looks at how rapidly teeth can drift to new positions, and what causes them to move. Your teeth are supported by a base layer of bone, which can be lost due to gum disease. Experiencing bleeding gums is an early sign of this, and smoking can disguise the problem so you may not notice. In this case in 2014 there was a fairly stable gap between the lower left 5 and 7 teeth which had been closing very slowly ever since the 6 tooth had been extracted about 40 years previously. This is one of the reasons we don’t advise mid arch extractions. Life then got in the way and Christine was unable to attend the surgery regularly, so that acute gum disease set in and tooth 5 moved backwards while tooth 7 continued to move forward as the teeth loosened.

Above: 2014 Below: 2018

This movement between teeth 5 & 7 took four years and could have been prevented had regular exams and hygiene visits been maintained. Some surgery has been carried out and the bone loss is now stabilised and the teeth firmer. If you are having problems with teeth moving, or are experiencing bleeding gums, we offer a diagnostic and preventative course of three visits for ÂŁ160. Just call 01983 615108 and discuss booking this with Jasmine or Maxine.

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Fashion, health & beauty

Compassionate care When a loved one reaches the stage of life where they may need extra care, it’s important for all concerned to find just the right place. Offering compassionate and dignified care, Inglefield is a well-established nursing and residential home, set just a stone’s throw from Totland Bay. A majestic Victorian house, it sits in beautiful grounds and was once the family home of Lord Beaverbrook. The home is part of Buckland Care, a family-run group of 12 care homes across the South of England which also runs Blackwater Mill in Newport. As such, it benefits from a long-standing, experienced staff team, a warm, family atmosphere, and in-house cooks who prepare delicious and nutritious meals.

Inglefield also offers plenty of activities and organises entertainment and regular outings to ensure that residents continue to live as independently

as possible. A tour of the home can be arranged by calling the manager Alison – or you are invited to attend an event such as the Halloween party on October 31st from 4-8pm or the Christmas party on December 14 from 4pm to see the home in friendly party mode. Call Inglefield on 01983 755559 or email inglefield@

Supporting your skin If your skin tends to flare up when autumn leaves begin to fall, then it’s probably time to review your skincare routine. After all that fresh air and sun you’ve probably enjoyed during our stunning summer, your skin now has to adjust back to the stark realities of biting winds along with tights, woolly jumpers and central heating - so extra TLC is definitely in order now. According to skincare experts, it’s best to avoid soap, or any of those shower and bath products containing detergents and alcohol, which tend to strip the natural oils from your skin and make it more prone to irritation and dehydration. It’s worth spending a bit more to find a good quality nourishing milk bath, even one

of those prescribed for people suffering from psoriasis and skin allergies. A gentle, milkrich bath product will support the acid mantle and the natural moisturising factor of the skin. It’s important to make sure your bath isn’t piping hot, though, because extreme heat

can cause broken veins and dry out the skin at a rapid rate. If you’re feeling chilly and really craving some heat, it’s best to use a body brush before a bath to stimulate circulation and warm the body – and it’s a great exfoliator, so you’ll have baby-soft skin afterwards.

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Fashion, health & beauty

Luscious lips made easy “I was so excited to get my lips done - it’s going to save me so much time!” Be bold, or opt for a more natural look - Permanent Lip Make-up is an excellent way of enhancing the shape, colour and fullness of your lips, and they will look fabulous! • Gives volume and fullness to every woman’s lips. • For a very natural finish, the Lip Blush is perfect, or for bolder colours, choose the Full Lip Colour. Both treatments will add contour and definition to your lips, perfecting the shape and making them look fuller. Gorgeous!

• Restores youthful definition to fading lips. • No more lipstick bleed. • In fact you can forget about lipstick altogether! Just apply a dab of lip gloss and you are good to go. • Small imperfections can be corrected. Call Karen for a free, noobligation consultation on 07511 398797. Find FAQs and more at

By Karen Douglas-Bhanot, Microblading & Permanent Make-up Specialist, Carefree Beauty Studio, East Cowes

Your questions answered by Rebecca Taylor, Practice Principal, Cowes Chiropractic Clinic

In clinic, patients often ask us ‘what’s the difference between a chiropractor and an osteopath?’ And ‘what does a physiotherapist actually do?’ These are very good questions and deserve good answers! So here goes… Actually we all want to achieve the same thing which is to reduce your pain, improve mobility and enable you to live your life in the way that you want. We all use hands- on techniques, and our training is to Degree level. Physiotherapists generally use prescriptive exercises in combination with soft tissue techniques, sometimes combined with ultrasound, kinesio-taping and dry needling. Osteopaths focus on bones and muscles and use long lever manipulative techniques in conjunction with soft tissue work. Chiropractors are trained to look at the effects of spinal misalignments on

the nerve roots and therefore the muscles, and McTimoney chiropractors use high-velocity, low-force adjustments in the whole body treatment. All these professions are required to do continuing professional development each year and will offer their further knowledge of additional techniques. So your physiotherapist may use manipulation and your chiropractor will prescribe exercises! As with anything, the best way to find the most suitable therapist for you is to ask friends and family for their referrals. Always trust your first impressions and always ask (good) questions! Find Cowes Chiropractic Clinic at 24 - 26 Birmingham Road, Cowes, PO31 7BH. Call them on 01983 282810.

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LOCAL PRODUCERS J. WILKINSON’S PIES Various pies, pasties and slices made by hand on the premises and sold in our shop to the public as well as to various restaurants, cafes and other shops. Orders taken please phone for details. Tel: 07716 106926 Address: 1 High Street, Sandown, PO36 8JW

TIPSY WIGHT Tipsy Wight® believe that Christmas is the perfect time to celebrate the lovely fruits, flowers & berries that grow in the English countryside. What better way than with the ‘12 Days of Christmas’ handmade gift set, brimming with quirky & gorgeous tipples. A grown-up advent treat! Tipsy Wight® produce a range of beautifully packaged vodkas and vodka liqueurs in three different sizes. For gifts and serving suggestions visit @tipsywight


THE BORNEO PANTRY Est 2011 in Brunei, Borneo, now handmade on the Isle of Wight. Specialising in Chutneys and Pickles, producing an extensive range to suit all taste buds. Uses are only limited by your imagination. Tel: 07809 707837 Address: Unit 19, Faulkner Lane, Sandown, PO36 9AZ Web: E:

PHILLIPS FINE FOODS Phillips Fine Foods offers a wide range of whole and filleted fresh fish, such as Cod, Haddock, Hake, Salmon & Trout to name but a few. We source from local and national markets up to five times a week to meet the demands of the chefs. The business also operates two retail shops, one on Cowes High Street and the other in Northwood, selling a wide range of fresh, frozen and smoked fish and seafood direct to the public. We can offer cooked crab and lobster, subject to landings, and for a special occasion why not try a poached and decorated Salmon? Tel: 01983 282200 Address: 339 Newport Road, Northwood, Cowes, PO31 8PG Tel: 01983 245247 Address: 111 High Street Cowes, PO31 7AT Web:

VENTNOR BOTANIC GARDEN Ventnor Botanic Garden reintroduced hop growing on the Island back in 2009. Our Original Ale is a light golden colour, punchy and earthy with a hint of apricot fruit. Our Pale Ale combines green Sovereign Hops with dried Cascade and Admiral Hops. The latest addition is our Botanic Lager with a hint of Eucalyptus. Innovative, yet totally refreshing.


Available now to enjoy in the Plantation café and edulis restaurant, also in the gift shop. For sale in individual bottles, small kegs, crates and three bottle gift packs.

Get ready for Christmas with Brownrigg’s free range poultry & other festive meats, all reared on our family farm. Visit our farm shop & cafe which is well stocked with gluten free, vegetarian & other local produce. Order online at

Tel: 01983 855397 Address: Undercliff Drive, Ventnor, PO38 1UL Facebook: /ventnorbotanicCIC

Tel: 01983 840191 Address: Brownrigg’s Farm Shop and Cafe, Newport Road, Godshill, PO38 3LY

FARMHOUSE FAYRE Farmhouse Fayre, growing on the Island for the Island. We are now the third generation farming at Ash Hill farm. Locally sourced produce wherever possible. We stock IOW free range eggs, cheese, milk, garlic, tomatoes and vegetables. Also in the shop we have the finest fruits from all around the world. Visit our shop and be welcomed with our personal touch. Tel: 01983 525836 Address: 85-86 Upper St James St, Newport, PO30 1LG


ISLAND ROASTED Island Roasted have been producing the Island’s finest hand roasted artisan coffee for wholesale and retail since 2010, sourcing direct trade coffees where possible ensuring ethical and sustainable trade. Tel: 01983 857670 Website:

BEAU’S ICE CREAM Beau’s Ice Cream handcrafts luxurious vegan artisan ice cream using only the best natural ingredients. We have a full menu of exciting flavours which provide the delicious, creamy taste of traditional ice cream without the dairy, all made locally in our 100% vegan facility. All our ice cream is lovingly made to order, and we also offer bespoke guest ice creams for any occasion. Tel: 07507 814458 Email:

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Food & Drink

Briddlesford Farm Dairy scoops five Great Taste Awards Great Taste is among the world’s most coveted food awards, with over 15,000 products from around the world coming under scrutiny - so it’s an amazing achievement for Island-based Briddlesford Farm Dairy to have been awarded not just one, but a remarkable five awards - for its farmhouse cheddar cheese, halloumi cheese, double cream, whole milk and semi skimmed milk. Judged by over 500 of the most demanding palates, belonging to food critics, chefs, cooks, restauranteurs and producers, as well as a whole host of food writers and journalists, Great Taste is widely acknowledged as the most respected food accreditation scheme for artisan and speciality food producers. As well as a badge of honour, the unmistakable black and gold Great Taste label is a signpost to a wonderful tasting product, which has been discovered through hours and hours of blind tasting. Briddlesford’s Great Tasting products can be found in the farm’s shop and Bluebells café, as well as all good shops, delis and coffee houses across the Island – and, if you travel on Wightlink ferries your tea or coffee will be served with Briddlesford milk. ‘We are delighted to have won so many Awards,’ explained Louise Griffin of Briddlesford, ‘My great- grandparents started farming at Briddlesford in 1923 and today’s herd are all descendants of the original 15

Guernsey cows. Guernseys are the traditional breed of the Isle of Wight but there are now very few herds left in the country. Their milk and cream is renowned not only for its rich, creamy flavour but also for its golden colour, and we have now developed some unique cheese recipes that complement this.’ The hard cheeses at Briddlesford are matured on wood from the farm’s ancient woodlands which adds subtlety to the delicious flavours. The halloumi is probably

the freshest you can get. The cows are milked in the morning, their milk is pasteurised, sent through to the cheese room, and by the end of the day it is on the shelves in the farm shop. The same goes for the milk and the cream, which means customers can’t get any fresher than that, or clock up so few food miles!

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Food & Drink

Venison & wild mushroom terrine with juniper, orange, thyme, baby spinach salad, spiced red onion & port glaze Recipe by The Bandstand Ingredients


200g wild mushroom

1. Chop half the bacon and put in a bowl with liver & belly, onion, garlic, zest, juniper & chopped herbs. Mix well. Pass through a mincer or food processor.

300g venison loin of the bone 350g unsmoked streaky bacon 150g venison liver or chicken liver 250g diced pork belly, rind removed ½ medium onion, finely chopped 3 cloves of garlic crushed & finely chopped ¼ grated zest of orange 3 juniper berries finely chopped 3 bay leaves finely chopped 3 fresh thyme sprigs, leaves chopped 50g fresh bread crumbs 1 medium free range egg 2 tbsp brandy You will also need a 1 litre terrine or loaf tin

length, surrounded by the wild mushroom. Add another third of the meat mixure pressing it down, repeat the next layer, finish with meat mixture. Make sure it’s level.

2. Return to the bowl, mix in egg & breadcrumbs, then season with sea salt & black pepper.

7. Fold the overhanging bacon to cover and fold the cling film over the top press down to enclose.

3. Cut venison lengthways into strips 2cm thick, fry in a very hot pan the wild mushrooms & brandy.

8. Put a lid on the terrine or use foil to cover tightly. Fill a deep roasting tin with hot water and lower the terrine into the water. The water should come up ⅔ of the side. Cook in oven for 1 hour 20 minutes.

4. Stretch out rest of the bacon with the back of a knife, make it as wide & long as possible. Line the loaf tin with cling film, leave 10cm overhang. Use the bacon to line the terrine so they overhang by about 6cm. 5. Preheat oven to 170°c / 150°c fan / gas 3½. 6. Fill the terrine with ⅓ of the minced meat mix. Lay half the venison strips along it’s

9. Once cooked remove the terrine from the oven and water. Leave to cool at room temperature then chill. 10. Use a weight to press the terrine overnight this will give it a better texture. 11. Take the terrine out of the fridge 30 minutes before eating.

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Food & Drink

Memorable cakes from Cara Lucas It’s been a busy summer in the kitchen for Cordon Bleu-trained baker Cara Lucas, creating over 40 hand-crafted wedding cakes in the space of five months – not to mention a whole range of other celebration cakes. To cope with the growing demand for her artistically-inspired cake creations, Cara relocated her Gladys May Cakery from a shop in Cross Street, Ryde to a purpose-built bakery she’s had created in her own garden. “It’s great” says Cara, “as it allows me to focus more on my work and I can still do cake tastings by appointment.” Her busy wedding season has certainly been hard work, but as she says: “It’s so worth it, because it’s what I love doing.” In fact next year she plans to focus more on the wedding cakes, with bookings flowing in already. She also plans to venture into more vegan recipes, and

says she’s recently perfected some vegan macaroons that taste just like regular ones. Meanwhile, bride-to-be Cara is also focusing on her own wedding in October - for which she’s planning to create her first six-tier cake in a dramatic 1920s Art Deco theme with a cupcake tower. “It will be a lovely way to finish the wedding season” she says, “and then take a short break to regroup before the Christmas orders start coming in!” Call the Gladys May Cakery on 07870 800 323, email or visit the website at www.

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Food & Drink

Ultimate chocolate yule log Ingredients


For the cake


6 large eggs (separated)

Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4/350ºF.


In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites 8. until they make thick peaks. Still whisking, sprinkle in 50g of caster sugar and continue whisking until the whites are holding their peaks.

150g caster sugar 50g cocoa powder 1 teaspoon vanilla extract For the chocolate ganache topping


300ml double cream 300g dark chocolate (around 35-40% cocoa solids), broken into small pieces

For decoration Icing sugar


While the cake is cooling, make the ganache topping. Heat the cream in a pan, just so as you can keep your finger in it. Remove from the heat and add the chocolate, stirring until melted. Cool to room temperature, then put into the fridge to firm up. Uncurl the cold Swiss roll and remove the paper. Spread the whipped cream on top, and re-roll tightly. Cut a quarter of the cake off from the end on the diagonal. Transfer the large piece of cake to a serving plate and angle the cut end in to the middle of the large cake to make a branch.


Fold in a few spoons of egg whites into the yolk mixture. Then add the remaining whites in thirds, folding them in carefully to avoid losing air.


Line a Swiss roll tin with baking paper, leaving a generous overhang.


Pour in the cake mixture and bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Let the cake cool a little then turn it out onto a piece of baking parchment. Dust the parchment with a little icing sugar to help prevent stickage.


Cut a score mark 2.5cm/1in in along 11. Dust with icing sugar and garnish one of the longer edges. Starting with fresh holly. with this edge, begin to tightly roll

For the cream filling 300ml double cream, whipped

In another bowl, whisk the egg yolks and the remaining caster sugar until the mixture is pale and mousse-like. Add the vanilla extract, sieve the cocoa powder over, then fold both in.

up the sponge using the paper. Roll with the paper inside and sit the roll on top of its outside edge to cool.

10. Put the chocolate icing into a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle. Pipe long thick lines along the cake, covering the cake completely so it looks like the bark of a tree. Cover each end with icing. Alternatively, just use a knife to spread on the icing and create rough bark texture with a fork.

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Food & Drink

Ingredients 2kg lamb neck fillets 5 tbsp mild olive oil or sunflower oil

Persian Lamb Tagine Method

1. Heat oven to 1800C/1600C fan/ gas 4. Trim the lamb of any hard fat, cut into chunks and season 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped all over. 4 tsp ground cumin 2. Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a large 4 tsp ground coriander flameproof casserole dish and 1 tsp hot chilli powder brown the lamb in 3-4 batches 1 tsp ground turmeric over a high heat for 1-2 mins until lightly coloured. Add 1 tbsp large pinch of saffron more oil between each batch and 2 cinnamon sticks transfer to a bowl each time a 2 preserved lemons (from a batch is browned. jar), drained and cut into thin 3. Heat the remaining oil in the wedges same dish over a medium heat 300g ready-to-eat dried and fry the onions for 5 mins apricots or until softened and lightly 250g ready-to-eat dried coloured. pitted dates 4. Stir in the garlic, cumin, coriander, 100g shelled pistachios chilli powder, turmeric, 1 tsp 2 tsp rosewater ground black pepper and 1 tsp 25g cornflour flaked sea salt. Cook for 1 min, small bunch coriander, leaves stirring. roughly chopped 5. Return the lamb to the dish and cooked couscous or basmati add 1.5 litres of water, the saffron, rice, to serve cinnamon and lemons. Bring to a 3 medium onions, cut into thin wedges

simmer, stirring a few times. Cover with a lid and transfer to the oven. Cook for 1 hr. 6. Carefully remove the dish from the oven and stir in the apricots, dates and half the pistachios, then cover once more and return to the oven. Cook for a further 30 mins or until the lamb is very tender. 7. Transfer the dish to the hob and adjust the seasoning to taste. Mix the cornflour with the rosewater and 3 tbsp cold water, then stir into the tagine. 8. Cook over a medium heat for 1-2 mins or until the sauce thickens. (Thickening the sauce with cornflour isn’t traditional but helps the tagine to freeze more successfully.) 9. When ready to serve, roughly chop the remaining nuts and sprinkle over the top. Garnish with coriander and serve with couscous or rice.

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Food & Drink

Apple & Blackberry Cake with Caramel Drizzle Recipe by The Gladys May Cakery Ingredients




Caramel Drizzle

115g unsalted butter or baking spread

1. Cream the sugar and butter/spread until light and fluffy, then beat in the egg, followed by the flour and cinnamon mix.

5. This sauce will make enough for four servings, so can be stored in the fridge and reheated for use with other desserts.

2. Loosen the mix by adding the milk, then fold in the diced apple and half the blackberries.

6. Melt the butter and sugar in a saucepan over a low heat until the sugar is dissolved.

3. Spoon the mixture into a lined 8 inch tin and push the remaining blackberries into the top of the batter.

7. Stir in the cream and simmer gently for about 30 seconds, then take of the heat. Drizzle over the warm apple cake and enjoy!

4. Bake at 160c for approximately 30-40 minutes until golden and a skewer inserted into the centre comes out clean.

8. Alternatively, a good quality shop bought caramel sauce/dulce de leche will work, just heat gently before drizzling.

115g light brown sugar 1 large egg 5tbsp milk 225g self raising flour 2tsp ground cinnamon 225g diced cooking apple 150g blackberries Caramel Drizzle 120g light brown sugar 120g butter 100ml double cream

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Lоg Island


What our customers are saying so far on our Facebook page

too!! Highly recommend giving this place a try. Well done Long Island

Kerry Draper - My husband and I visited

salad, good size portion and was very yummy, my mum had a rib eye steak which she enjoyed. Staff were very welcoming. I definitely recommend ! Great food· Stylish interior · Large menu Hip atmosphere

Long Island for dinner this evening and wow! What an amazing place to sit and get away from the world outside. Beautifully renovated, with a lovely feel. The staff were so helpful, friendly and attentive. The food was faultless and I can’t recommend the waffles enough! Yum! We will be returning and suggest anyone that is thinking of visiting to go as soon as possible! Thank you everyone at Long Island

Sue Hart - Lovely food, very welcoming

happy staff.. the cocktails were very good


Natalie Jade Davis - I had a crispy duck

Tracy Howe - Amazing food and friendly

staff, highly recommended! Chic décor · Classic cocktails · Large menu · Stylish interior · Great food

Ian Jackman Read - Everything

about Long Island is beyond good, food, atmosphere, music, staff, cocktails etc etc

etc...had the best steak I’ve ever eaten. Can’t wait to go back again and will spread the word, soon to be the hippest place on the Island 11/10

Katie Johnson - Was super excited to try this place out after seeing the menu. Lived up to all expectations and more...homemade coleslaw...amazing burger and the best fries ever....topped off by a free pudding!! Be sure to check out their deals through October!!! Highly recommended and can’t wait to come back in a few weeks.

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OCTOBER OFFERS WEDNESDAY This offer applies to all burgers purchased on Wednesdays only. Offer expires 31st October 2018

THURSDAY Offer does not include Frozen Mountain This offer applies to Thursday evenings only. Expires 25th October 2018

FRIDAY Offer expires 26th October 2018. Glass of house wine 125ml


Buy two of our tasty burgers, get the cheapest one free! Includes stealth fries and slaw


Buy one main meal get one dessert free!


Full rack of ribs & bottle of beer or glass of house wine between 5-7pm £13.00pp


Happy Hour

A bottle of Prosecco 15.00 or any bottle beer 2.75 *6.00 cocktails for 5.00


longislandiow - To Book: 01983 716281 OPEN: WEDNESDAY/THURSDAY/FRIDAY/SATURDAY 5pm - 11pm 24 HOLYROOD STREET, NEWPORT, ISLE OF WIGHT. PO30 5AZ (Above Newport Ale House)

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Food & Drink

Squidgy chocolate pear pudding Serves 8

Ingredients 200g butter, plus extra for greasing 300g golden caster sugar 4 large eggs 75g plain flour 50g cocoa powder 410g can pear halves in juice, drained 100g plain dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids) 25g flaked almonds (optional) Cream or ice cream, to serve

Method 1. Heat oven to 1900C/1700C fan/ gas 5. Lightly grease a roughly 20 x 30cm shallow ovenproof dish.

and nestle the pears into the chocolate batter.

6. Put the chocolate on a board and cut into chunky pieces roughly 2. Put the butter in a large saucepan 1.5cm with a large knife. and place over a low heat until just melted. Remove the butter from 7. Scatter the chocolate pieces the heat and stir in the sugar until over the batter and sprinkle with well combined. almonds, if you like. Can be frozen at this stage. 3. Whisk the eggs together in a large bowl. Gradually add the eggs to 8. Bake in the centre of the oven for the butter and sugar, beating well 30 mins or until the mixture is with a wooden spoon in between crusty on the surface and lightly each addition. cooked inside. 4. Sift the flour and cocoa powder on 9. Do not allow to overcook, as the top of the egg mixture, then beat cake will become spongy rather hard with a wooden spoon until than gooey in the centre. Serve thoroughly combined. warm with cream or ice cream 5. Pour into the prepared tin or dish

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How safe is your play area? Hospitality businesses often rely on families as part of their trade, and the benefit of providing play equipment for children is understandable – happy kids equals happy parents! Just putting up some equipment and letting them get on with it is a risky approach. NFU Mutual received 100 claims per year between 2014 and 2016 relating to injuries to children at commercial properties. For those claims reported, there will be a host of unreported incidents, which can lead to reputational damage for the business. Common injuries were broken


bones or cuts from falls; not all from monkey bars and swings. Some innocuous objects were cited in claims, and business owners should remain vigilant and ensure all areas are safe. Having a system of checks, and recording them is essential for any business in the event of a claim. To read the full article please visit or contact

the local office on 01983 52290 for a printed copy.

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Inside Business

A family approach to funerals A programme of expansion works has been going on this year at the Newport premises of independent funeral director Geoff Leather – and the result has finally been unveiled with a much larger car park, a more spacious and welcoming reception area, disabled facilities, and an additional funeral consultation room. Meanwhile, the garage has also been extended to accommodate the company’s hearse, limousines, and traditional funeral bier. According to second generation funeral director Robin Leather, the aim of the whole 12-month improvement programme has been to remove as many of the

external stresses as possible for clients, at what is naturally a difficult time in their lives. The business, launched by Robin’s father Geoff and now into its third decade, also employs Robin’s brother Marcus, who is based at the Cowes office with funeral director Rob Cheney. Working alongside his father,

Robin believes that their family-centred approach offers clients a service that is personal and compassionate as well as being totally professional. They are members of both the National Association of Funeral Directors and the independent funeral directors’ society, SAIF. Robin adds that the company can also offer advice and guidance on pre-paid funeral plans, and is happy to talk about any aspect of the service they offer. Find Geoff Leather in Newport at 45 Upper St James’ Street, telephone: 01983 529090. Find them in Cowes at 40 Place Road, Cowes, telephone: 01983 292932.

Enjoying the magic of guitars You don’t need to be a guitar player to be fascinated by Willy’s Guitar Shop in Cowes – the well-known musical ‘boutique’ with a distinctive vibe and window displays full of wonderful vintage pre-owned guitars. The magical atmosphere extends into the shop, where there are between 60 and 70 guitars on display – all perfectly tuned and with amps ready set up and stools just waiting for people to try out the amazing selection of lead guitars, bass guitars, acoustic nylon stringed, and steel stringed guitars. Owner of the business is musician Roland White, who has an encyclopaedic knowledge of his subject, thanks to his lifelong passion for guitars. So if there’s something you’re particularly looking for, he will more than likely

be the man who can help you. Even for non guitar players, a guitar can actually be a worthwhile investment as they tend to increase in value. Or, if the sight of all those stunning instruments makes you tempted to learn, Roland can offer lessons, as he’s also an experienced guitar teacher of both children and adults.

With Christmas on the horizon, he also offers a payment plan for customers who wish to pre-order guitars as gifts. You can find Willy’s Guitar Shop at 12 Shooters Hill, Cowes, PO31 7BG or on Facebook. Call them on 01983 242680.

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Tel: 01983 220106


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Closing the ‘preparedness gap’ By Anthony Peter Charles Freelove TEP of Terence Willey & Co It is human nature to avoid talking about certain issues: death is most certainly one of them. But what about illness and incapacity? Who will make decisions about our financial affairs, and, should we need it, our medical and home/residential care, if we legally are unable to do so? A recent report from the Centre for Future Studies (CFS) showed that the majority of the United Kingdom population is leaving such matters to chance. According to the Office of The Public Guardian, the proportion of over-65’s who have actually Registered a Health and Welfare Lasting Power of Attorney (LPA) is a shockingly low 7%. A CFS forecast indicates that this so-called “preparedness gap” will continue, potentially leaving over 13 million people by 2025 unable to have their voices heard, and their wishes respected, if they lose capacity. The typical age for making an LPA is between 81-90, and in my experience, it is sometimes sadly left too late. There is no need to wait for signs of declining health. If an individual wishes to make preparations in advance, they can make an LPA, in the nature of an insurance, and keep it against future eventualities. It is a common misconception that next of kin can make decisions for family members who have lost capacity about financial, medical and care matters, but this is not so. If an appropriate LPA does not exist, such decisions may be made by medical practitioners, Social Workers, or, in extremis, by the Court of Protection. This

can be heartbreaking, and, it has to be said, extremely expensive to resolve in cases of dispute. Whilst it is undeniably a sensitive subject, it is also vital to discuss your wishes with family concerning potential future medical and care issues. Far from being morbid, or, indeed, a self-fulfilling prophecy, it is in fact empowering for the individual, and provides a logical complementary document to have lying alongside a Will. The advantages of an LPA include: • The ability to choose who will make decisions on your behalf. • The ability to have some control over end-of-life care. • To be used, with your consent, if capacity still subsists, but perhaps physical health is declining. • The ability to preserve functioning of a business, with an appropriately worded LPA. • The ability to limit what decisions the Attorneys may actually make. • Ultimately, peace of mind - which is priceless. It is not possible in such an article to cover all relevant issues, and legal advice is strongly recommended before completing a Lasting Power of Attorney.

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Island Life October / November 2018 issue  

The October / November issue of Island Life magazine

Island Life October / November 2018 issue  

The October / November issue of Island Life magazine