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London calling...


elcome to the latest edition of Savoy Magazine, a true love letter from The Savoy to London, this city that we're so proud to call home. We relaunch our magazine with a fresh new look and even more content this issue, bringing you an exclusive insight into the London high life, spanning art, fashion, culture, interviews and travel. In my last letter, I promised you a cultural programme for 2018 that would showcase our passion for building unique partnerships, and within the following pages, of this magazine we’re proud to tell you about some of the exciting initiatives that we’ve introduced. Simpson’s in the Strand welcomes Zoom Rockman, an inspiring young man and satirical cartoonist, as artist in residence; The Collective You completed their first residency in February with stunning results; and we enjoyed a hugely successful seventh year as the EE British Academy Film Awards’ Official Hotel Partner - read our interview with the vivacious Joanna Lumley, who we caught up with ahead of her debut presenting the awards. You’ll also find a humbling interview with Rebecca Mauger, executive director for fundraising at one of our charity partners, British Red Cross, who talks about their incredible work at the centre of some of the world’s most difficult conflicts over the past 100 years. Thankfully, the days are longer and winter is finally behind us so, we’re looking forward to getting out there to embrace all that this gloriously lively and diverse capital has to offer. We’ve done the work for you and trawled through all of the events (page 12), pop-up specials (page 17) and social dates (page 24), to bring you the very best things to see and do over the coming months. We think you’ll be busy! ■

Philip M. Barnes Regional Vice President & Managing Director 06 / TO LONDON, WITH LOVE

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■ Live Entertainment Every night at The Savoy You can enjoy the best live jazz when you visit The Savoy’s Thames Foyer, Beaufort Bar or Kaspar’s for a sumptuous dinner or evening drinks and cocktails. Every Sunday to Thursday, from 8pm to 12am, as well as every Friday and Saturday, from 8.30pm to 12.30am, experience an unforgettable night out and immerse yourself in live music from outstanding pianists and singers any night of the week.

■ Savoy Masterclasses Various dates at The Savoy On June 22 and August 24, join a Savoy butler for a suitcase-packing course, or get creative with a cocktail class on

May 19, July 7 or August 11 (vintage cocktails on June 30). Alternatively, become a master carver at Simpson’s in May, June or September, create irresistible chocolate on July 1, bake bread on June 23, or serve up a showstopping afternoon tea on May 20.

■ Plans and Plants: The making of the Temperate House Until Sunday September 16, Kew Gardens In celebration of the reopening of the Temperate House, come and examine architect Decimus Burton’s original plans from 1863. Designed by Burton, the glasshouse took nearly 40 years to complete, using the most modern technology of the time. In this behind-thescenes exhibition, you’ll find out which plants were on show then, and where in the world they came from.

■ Sensational Butterflies Until Sunday September 16, Natural History Museum See hundreds of live butterflies and moths up close in this Technicolor exhibition, which features a huge variety of these beautiful insects, ethically sourced from Africa, Asia and the Americas. Following a trail through a jungle habitat in the heart of London, kids and families can find out colourful butterfly facts, learning more about the fascinating creatures’ behaviour and diversity as they fly all around.


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■ Underbelly Festival Until Sunday September 30, South Bank Running from April throughout the summer, and located between the Southbank Centre, Jubilee Gardens and London Eye, Underbelly features a packed programme of comedy, circus, cabaret and family entertainment! You can enter the festival for free, and relax and unwind at one of the biggest outdoor bars in London, which serves delicious drinks and a bite to eat, right on the banks of the River Thames.

■ Rodin and the art of ancient Greece Thursday April 26 to Sunday July 29, The British Museum Discover how ancient Greek sculpture inspired French sculptor Auguste Rodin to set a radical new direction for modern art in the late 19th century. This major exhibition features original plaster, bronze and marble examples of many of Rodin’s sculptures, on loan from the Musée Rodin in Paris, allowing visitors to see his work in a new light.

■ Royal Afternoon Tea and ‘A Royal Welcome’ Tuesday May 1 to Thursday May 31, The Savoy Head to The Savoy’s Thames Foyer for Royal Afternoon Tea, which features Her Majesty The Queen’s favourite cake of soft chocolate ganache, rich tea biscuits and rum-soaked raisins. Elsewhere in the hotel’s American Bar, ‘A Royal Welcome’ is a light and aromatic cocktail that can be ordered individually, or as part the ‘Royal Flight’ collection of historical drinks.

■ Artists at Work Thursday May 3 to Sunday July 15, The Courtauld Gallery Visit The Courtauld Gallery to discover how artists have long taken pleasure in representing themselves at work, in their studios or academies, out and about in a landscape, or recording their own likeness. Through a selection of drawings ranging from the 16th to the 20th century, Artists at Work aims to illustrate the range in which artists portray who they are.

■ Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier Thursday May 10 to Sunday October 7, The Design Museum Celebrate the beauty of the female form with 35 years of haute couture from Azzedine Alaïa. In the first UK solo exhibition of his work, discover the mastery of cut, tailoring, fit, form and materials behind the designer’s unique creations. The exhibition charts Alaïa’s journey from sculptor to couturier, and his infectious energy for fashion, friendship and the female body.

■ London Nights Friday May 11 to Sunday November 11, Museum of London Explore London after dark in a new, evocative photography exhibition. Fusing portraiture, documentary, photography and film, London Nights reveals the city at night, through photographs ranging from the late 19th century to the present day. Drawing from the museum’s extensive collection and loaned works, 50 artists are represented through over 200 shots, taking visitors on a dramatic, nocturnal study of the capital.


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■ The Return of the Past: Postmodernism in British Architecture Wednesday May 16 to Sunday August 26, Sir John Soane’s Museum In the first exhibition devoted solely to Postmodernist British architecture, The Return of the Past looks specifically at the movement’s ‘radical moment’ during the late 1970s and ‘80s, showcasing a selection of pivotal projects and works by some of its most important architects, namely Terry Farrell, CZWG, Jeremy Dixon, John Outram and James Stirling.

■ Orla Kiely: A Life in Pattern Friday May 25 to Sunday September 23, Fashion and Textile Museum Featuring over 150 patterns and products, A Life in Pattern emphasises the role of ornament and colour in our everyday lives, from one of the UK’s most successful designers. This exhibition offers a privileged insight into Orla Kiely’s world – how she works, what inspires her, and why her facility with pattern has produced designs that resonate worldwide.

■ Lee Bul Wednesday May 30 to Sunday August 19, Hayward Gallery This mid-career survey of the work of acclaimed South Korean artist Lee Bul – the first in London – explores her extensive investigation into the body and its relationship to architectural space. Occupying the entire gallery, the exhibition includes documentation of early performances, sculptural works from the iconic Monster, Cyborg and Anagram series, and recent immersive installations, as well as a selection of the artist’s studio drawings.

■ Damian Barr’s Literary Salon Friday June 1, The Savoy Release your culture vulture and join writer Damian Barr for his Literary Salon. Lucy Mangan revisits her childhood reading with love, wit and gratitude in memoir Bookworm, plus there’s a first look at Sarah Perry’s new novel, Melmoth. Graham Norton returns to a rural Ireland seething with secrets, as he launches the completely compelling A Keeper, while Patrick Gale is back with his brilliant Take Nothing With You.

■ Aftermath: Art in the Wake of World War One Tuesday June 5 to Sunday September 23, Tate Britain Marking 100 years since the end of World War One, Aftermath explores how artists responded to the physical and psychological scars left on Europe. This fascinating and moving exhibition shows how painters reacted to memories of war in many ways, from documenting its destructive impact, to the building of public memorials, and as a social critique.

■ Print! Tearing It Up Friday June 8 to Wednesday August 22, Somerset House Unearth the history and impact of the British independent magazine scene today in Print! at Somerset House. This exhibition charts the evolution of polemic and progressive print publications, and celebrates the current diverse industry of innovative independent magazines. From BLAST to Private Eye, many of the magazines address the unspoken issues of the day, including diversity, gender, sexuality and media manipulation.


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■ Michael Jackson: On the Wall Thursday June 28 to Sunday October 21, National Portrait Gallery Don’t miss this landmark exhibition, exploring the influence of Michael Jackson on some of the leading names in contemporary art, spanning several generations of artists across all media. Curated by Dr Nicholas Cullinan, director of the National Portrait Gallery, the display coincides with what would have been the iconic entertainer and King of Pop’s 60th birthday on August 29.

■ Thomas Cole: Eden to Empire Monday June 11 to Sunday October 7, The National Gallery Watch empires rise and fall, and lose yourself in the vast American wilderness, in the first UK exhibition dedicated to 19th-centrury painter Thomas Cole. This is a rare chance to see Cole’s epic works, which are shown along with the sublime masterpieces that inspired him, such as swirling storms painted by Turner, and nightmarish battle scenes created by Constable.

■ The Jungle West End Saturday June 16 to Saturday November 3, Playhouse Theatre Following universal acclaim, The Jungle transfers to the West End this summer. Experience the Playhouse Theatre as never before, as it undergoes an extraordinary transformation to recreate the intimate staging of Miriam Buether’s design. Here, prepare to be transported into the world of the Calais camp, where a community forged from necessity shares its unimaginable stories of hope against all odds.

ONE NIGHT ONLY ■ Stuart McAlpine Miller Friday June 15 The Savoy will be unveiling a new collection of works by critically-acclaimed painter and artistin-residence, Stuart McAlpine Miller, Dubbed ‘one of the best artists of our time’ by art critic Estelle Lovatt, his latest works capture some of Hollywood’s biggest icons.

■ Frida Kahlo: Making Her Self Up Saturday June 16 to Sunday November 4, Victoria and Albert Museum Experience a fresh perspective on Kahlo’s compelling life story through her most intimate personal belongings at the V&A. Making Her Self Up presents an extraordinary collection of personal artefacts and clothing belonging to the iconic Mexican artist. Locked away for 50 years after her death, the collection has never before been exhibited outside of Mexico until now.

■ Carmen La Cubana Wednesday August 1 to Saturday August 18, Sadler’s Wells Carmen La Cubana is a sizzling new musical featuring Bizet’s classic score, but flavoured with authentic Cuban styles. Inspired by Oscar Hammerstein II’s Broadway hit Carmen Jones, Christopher Renshaw (The King and I) directs this UK premiere, with new orchestrations by Tony Award winner Alex Lacamoire (Hamilton), mixing opera with salsa, mambo, rumba and chacha-cha, and including musical favourites such as Habanera.

■ Swan Lake Wednesday August 22 to Sunday August 26, London Coliseum The internationally acclaimed St Petersburg Ballet Theatre returns to the London Coliseum with their full-length classic production of Swan Lake. St Petersburg will perform this balletic masterpiece as it was meant to be seen, boasting gorgeous, traditionally painted backdrops, Tchaikovsky’s moving score, a full-sized orchestra, and criticallyacclaimed dancers performing the fulllength production for London audiences.


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■ Le Petit Chef at TT Liquor Until Friday August 31, Shoreditch Taking guests on an intrepid expedition in the footsteps of Marco Polo, Le Petit Chef has become a firm resident at Shoreditch’s TT Liquor. Creator Nadine Beshir’s aim was to produce an immersive dining experience that engages the senses and evokes the experiences of the famous explorer through the menu and animation, embarking on a historical ride across multiple gastronomic realities throughout history. ■ The Prince Until Sunday September 30, Fulham From the team behind Pergola venues comes The Prince – an entire street transformed into an epicurean avenue, dedicated to some of London’s most exciting

food, drink and social experiences. There’s no better place to while away a warm summer’s day or night than in London’s largest pub garden! One street, three bars, four restaurants and a summer English garden, all connected to create the perfect neighbourhood establishment. ■ Plant Bass LDN at Camden Lockside Until Friday December 7, Camden Town Held on the first Thursday of every month for the rest of 2018, Plant Bass LDN features kitchen takeovers from the likes of The Green Grill, Club Mexicana and Jakes Vegan Steaks, as well as Olive Sundae, ITIS LDN, V Burger and Little Leaf Food. Expect a combination of top-end vegan food, live music, talks, presentations

and DJs in Camden’s coolest venue. plantbassldn ■ Deptford Bites at Deptford Market Yard Until Saturday December 22, Deptford Complete with live music every week, Deptford Bites brings together the best produce and street food traders that London has to offer, alongside a selection of craft stalls to peruse and enjoy.

With a focus on South East London makers and designers, it’s the ideal place to grab some food, or why not stock up your cupboards with fresh produce and speciality foods? deptfordmarketyard. com/deptford-bites ■ Skylight London at Tobacco Dock From Thursday May 3, Wapping Croquet and pétanque come to one of London’s most popular, imaginative

rooftop destinations until mid-September. Skylight London will once again transform Wapping’s Tobacco Dock, this year hosting quintessentially British lawn games across the venue’s different levels, with four croquet lawns (two outdoors) and two pétanque courts to choose from. Plus, screenings of this year’s World Cup and Wimbledon championships will be readily available too.


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Where do you go when you're looking for inspiration? I used to go and sit in a little garden square at the back of Mount Street and Audley Street, near the Mayfair Library. What's the best meal you've eaten in the capital? I like the Caprice and the Delaunay. Some of the best meals I’ve had were in those two restaurants. And your favourite day trip out of the city? Going to the Colombe D’Or in St-Paul-de-Vence for lunch. You can fly in the morning from Heathrow to Nice. They’ve got a beautiful garden, and artists like Picasso used to give their paintings to the restaurant in exchange for food. How about your best-loved pub? I’m not keen on pubs, but I’ve been going to The Savoy's American Bar for 40 or 50 years.


From the start of his career in the 1960s,Terry O’Neill’s unique flair, with which he captured everyone from Winston Churchill to Elvis, gained him international fame. Here, he guides us through his London WORDS BY CAROLINE RODDIS . PHOTOGRAPHY BY FEDERICO BALZARINI

Where in London do you call home? In my heart of hearts, it’s Mayfair. I had a house in South Street and my best friends lived in Mount Street. I’ve always regarded it as my spiritual home. What's your earliest memory of the city? Funnily enough, going with my mother to get Sir John Mills’ autograph. She used to take me up to every Saturday matinee. I didn’t know who Sir John Mills was, but I think my mum was too shy to ask for his signature, so she made me do it.

What do you like to do in London when the sun comes out? Go sunbathing in Grosvenor Square – the sun may not come out that often in London, but when it does, that's certainly the place to be. What’s your favourite museum? The Victoria & Albert without a doubt. I’ve always found it the most interesting of the museums. A favourite exhibition of mine was one centred on the late and great David Bowie, which was fantastic.

Where do you always take out-of-town visitors? Waterloo Bridge, because the view of the city from there, on both sides, is fantastic. Particularly at night, it’s very exciting. Do you have a favourite film or television depiction of London? I love Oliver, with Robert Newton and Alec Guinness. There’s something about that period that I adore – it would have been wonderful to have lived then. I imagine I would have been an artist, as cameras weren’t around! What's the strangest thing you've experienced in the city? When I was in my 20s, there was a really foggy period in London. It was fabulous, actually. You couldn’t see where you were going half the time, and you had to walk everywhere. ■ TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 19

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The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society

The Avengers: Infinity War



Love, Simon

Solo: A Star Wars Story

■ Love, Simon April 6 This heart-warming coming-of-age story is about the complications of coming out as gay for Simon Spier (played by Nick Robinson), a high-school teen whose online crush is frustratingly anonymous.

■ The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society April 20 Lily James stars in an adaptation of Annie Barrow’s 2018 novel, which follows a writer who finds unlikely inspiration in Guernsey Island at the end of World War Two.

Ocean’s 8

■ The Avengers: Infinity War April 27 The Avengers must band together in the ultimate battle against villain Thanos, who plans to destroy the universe, in Marvel’s latest superhero epic. This marks the third ensemble movie in the Avengers franchise.

■ Solo: A Star Wars Story May 25 Han Solo’s early years are revealed in a new one-off story from the Star Wars universe, directed by Ron Howard. Alden Ehrenreich plays the hero, with Donald Glover, Emilia Clarke and Woody Harrelson.

■ Ocean’s 8 June 22 The Ocean's 11 series recieves a reboot from a starstudded female cast. This popular heist saga sees Sandra Bullock, Rhianna, Cate Blanchett and Anne Hathaway hit the big screen with some serious style.


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The Alienist

The Alienist ■ April 19 Daniel Brühl, Luke Evans and Dakota Fanning star in this new series, set in New York in 1896, which follows the investigation of a serial killer who is hunting and killing male prostitutes. Based on the best-selling book by Caleb Barr, the psychological thriller is making an impact with it's first series, now streaming on Netflix.


Legion ■ April 17 The second series of Legion premieres on FOX in April, bringing viewers back to Marvel X-Men character David Haller (Dan Stevens), whose powers make it impossible to differentiate reality from hallucination. Not much is known yet about the new episodes, but cast members Aubrey Plaza and Jean Smart will return.

CHVRCHES, Love Is Dead

CHVRCHES, Love Is Dead ■ May 25 Scottish indie pop act CHVRCHES follow their 2015 release Every Open Eye with Love Is Dead, an album that features The National frontman Matt Berninger on single My Enemy.

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt ■ May 30 Perky heroine Kimmy Schmidt, who was rescued after 15 years of living in a cult, returns for a fourth season in Tina Fey’s Netflix comedy series. The first six episodes will premiere in May, while the remaining half will arrive later in 2018. Starring comedy favourites Ellie Kemper and Jane Krakowski, this show is continuing to bring the laughs.



Janelle Monae, Dirty Computer

Janelle Monae, Dirty Computer ■ April 27 Janelle Monae returns with her third album, a soulful, funk-laden collection of songs that includes a collaboration with Prince. The lively, vintage-infused effort will be released alongside an accompanying film.

Willie Nelson,

Willie Nelson, Last Man Standing ■ April 27 Country icon Willie Nelson will unveil a new album a few days before his 85th birthday. Written in collaboration with longtime cohort Buddy Cannon, the record comprises 11 new original tunes.


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■ Royal Windsor Horse Show Wednesday May 9 to Sunday May 13 Now in its 75th year, this majestic meeting hosts fivestar international jumping and four-star international dressage, as well as The Land Rover International Driving Grand Prix, two-star endurance and national showing. For its Diamond year, the organisers are adding a special twist to Windsor Castle’s private grounds, recreating aspects of the show as they would have been in their founding year of 1943. ■ RHS Chelsea Flower Show Tuesday May 22 to Saturday May 26 Get your green fingers at the ready for the world’s most

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prestigious flower show. At Chelsea, you’ll bear witness to a visual feast of floral delight, complete with gardens and exhibitors that are waiting to dazzle, thought-provoking show gardens that are bound to get you thinking, and over 90 colourful displays in the Great Pavilion, with plants of every shape, size and colour. ■ Epsom Derby Friday June 1 and Saturday June 2 ‘The greatest flat race in the world’ returns to Epsom Downs Racecourse for an unforgettable weekend of powerhouse horseracing and elegant fashion, resulting in one the UK’s most traditional days out. From the

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Ladies’ Day on June 1 to Derby Day on June 2, this is undoubtedly one of the most crucial social soirées on the British summer calendar, which is not to be missed. ■ Chestertons Polo in the Park Friday June 8 to Sunday June 10 Head to Fulham’s Hurlingham Park for the largest polo tournament in Europe. With teams representing six cities from around the world over three days, you’ll get to see a minimum of three polo games a day. This unique, fast and furious format of the sport can be viewed from a plethora of bars and gardens, while enjoying great music and endless entertainment.

■ Royal Ascot Tuesday June 19 to Saturday June 23 Don your fanciest ensemble for a dazzlingly stylish day out at Ascot. As Britain’s most valuable race meeting, this world-famous event attracts many of the globe's finest racehorses to compete for more than £6.5million in prize money. Plus, it’s a major fashion showcase in its own right – so, ladies, don’t forget those hats, and gents, get your coattails in order for your Royal Enclosure visit. ■ Wimbledon Monday July 2 to Sunday July 15 Get your strawberries and cream at the ready for another exhilarating year of

world-class tennis at Wimbledon. Witness some of the greatest players on Earth face off on the iconic lawn over a packed-out two-week schedule, while enjoying one of the summer’s unmissable social occasions. Whether you’re atop Murray Mount or at the heart of the action, this is the event to see and be seen at. ■ RHS Hampton Court Palace Flower Show Tuesday July 3 to Sunday July 8 There will be gorgeous gardens, fabulous floral displays and designs, and fantastic shopping opportunities, all set against the unforgettable backdrop of Hampton Court in July. Here,

you can fall in love with gorgeous blooms, take home inspiration from the world-class Show Gardens, or visit the Floral Marquee, Plant Village and Festival of Roses, all while strutting your stuff in impeccable style. ■ Henley Royal Regatta Wednesday July 4 to Sunday July 8 Undoubtedly the best-known regatta in the world, Henley is a highlight of both the summer sporting calendar and the social season, thrilling thousands of spectators with over 200 races of international standards, and boasting charming views of Henley and the River Thames. For a truly exclusive

experience, book the private members’ Stewards’ Enclosure, situated on the Berkshire bank, right opposite the thrilling finish line. ■ Qatar Goodwood Festival Tuesday July 31 to Saturday August 4 Welcome to ‘Glorious Goodwood’, where five days of horse-racing action is set against the magnificent backdrop of the rolling Sussex countryside. With its position as one of the largest race meetings in the world, this spectacle is a real highlight of the flat-racing season, combining elegant fashion with some of the greatest races in the world to create a festival week like no other.


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Manners maketh the man Author, TV personality and etiquette coach, William Hanson, talks about the value of good behaviour in a modern society WORDS BY HANNAH PATTERSON . PHOTOGRAPHY BY THE COLLECTIVE YOU


here’s an element of surprise when I mention to a friend that I’m meeting with William Hanson at The Savoy's American Bar for a drink: “Isn’t etiquette a little outdated?” Evidently not. Indeed, William has built an empire out of good manners. He’s the bestselling author of The Bluffer’s Guide to Etiquette series, makes regular radio and television appearances, and is hired by corporations and individuals alike. The reason for his popularity? He brings a fresh approach to old teachings; as well as being shockingly young for someone so successful in what can be considered a ‘stuffy’ profession (28, to be exact), he’s also extraordinarily witty and close to bursting with charm. It doesn’t take long for me to realise that he was destined to educate the masses on how to behave. “When I was young, I wanted to be a spy or the Archbishop of Canterbury,” he tells me. “It became fairly evident early on that I couldn’t have been a spy, as I kept telling everyone that I wanted to be a spy, and I was only interested in being the Archbishop for the robes.” By his own admittance, William – who grew up in Somerset – was a precocious child, and in an attempt to appeal to this quality, his grandmother gave him a book on etiquette as a Christmas present when he was 12 years old; inspired by a copy that she herself had been given when she was younger. Recalls William: “Eating asparagus, addressing a bishop and answering the telephone were Granny’s favourites.” In his opinion, however, the formal approach to etiquette expressed in this title simply wouldn’t work in today’s society. When it comes to walking a line with modern manners, he advises to take the rules seriously, but not yourself. “Granny was a snob, and I think she’d admit that,” he notes. “I was once at a family wake, where granny introduced me to one of her childhood friends. I made the fatal error of saying, ‘Pleased

to meet you’; she took me to one side, looked at me very seriously and said, ‘Now, we’re going to do that again, but this time, you’re going to greet them properly’. I was taken back to be reintroduced and said, obediently, ‘How do you do?’” But it’s not a ‘snobby’ granny and a childhood book that gives William his authority on the subject. The topic of etiquette was an interest and passion that continued throughout his school and university career; beginning with being asked by a school master to teach the younger students how to behave at a dinner table – an experience that often resulted in being pelted with plates and glasses. He’s exceptionally knowledgeable on the topic of social behaviour – he regales me with a history of pirates and glass-clinking when I move to do so once our cocktails have arrived – but it’s the comedy that he finds within the formalities that makes his approach so refreshing and translatable to the modern world. In an age of mass exposure through social media and the internet in general, he notes an evergrowing sense of insecurity in the population at large, and having an understanding of how to behave in both social and business situations is a key way to tackle this. Essentially, etiquette has its practical uses – it’s not just for show. So, what’s the virtue of good manners? “It transcends every race, every gender, every socioeconomic status, every religion…everything,” he says. “Etiquette is about putting people at ease. It’s basically being nice to people and managing relationships in a positive way – both professionally and personally. Whether you’re speaking to your director, or the person who collects your bins every week, you should always be kind.” The long and short of it is, etiquette is about coming across with self-respect, and respect for others. “I get frustrated when people don’t know the basics,” adds William. “For example, I find that genuine gratitude is very thin on the ground these days.” Does he think that manners in society are declining?


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“People have become very self-absorbed,” he replies. “They won’t ask questions. They won’t show an interest. We’re so reticent to offend these days that it’s almost easier to talk about ourselves. It’s a lack of self-confidence – we’re experts in ourselves, so that’s the easiest thing to talk about.” Although William uses social media himself, he warns of the detrimental effect that it could be having, not only on good manners, but on our social skills as a whole. He argues that technology has given us the opportunity to edit ourselves, something he observes particularly in the younger generations. “Holding a face-to-face conversation is a real skill,” he insists. “So, there’s a generation who’ve grown up with the ability to edit what they say before they say it, and consequently struggle to hold engaging conversation face-to-face. You need people skills to succeed in anything.” I ask him if this is what both his corporate and private clients require when they hire him, but it’s actually dining etiquette that’s most commonly requested. William puts this down to the fact that many people eat three or four times a day, and a lot of business is done over lunch or dinner. Accordingly, one of the large high street banks has hired him every year for the past eight to host an ‘Etiquette Dinner’ for graduates who’ve been hired. “This stemmed from an incident that happened nine years ago,” he reflects. “The bank was holding a large dinner for the graduates who had completed their induction programme. One of the heads of the bank noticed a young man eating peas from his knife – which is very wrong – and turned to the deputy director of HR, proclaiming that they couldn’t have the man in question meeting with clients. I’ve been hired every year since.” So, is that etiquette’s main mission? To make sure that everyone eats peas properly? William concludes, at its very core, it’s to make everyone in the world more pleasant. “If everybody learned to behave, I wouldn’t exist,” he laughs. “For as long as there are badmannered people out there, there will be people like me teaching them to be nice.” ■ For more information on William Hanson, visit TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 27

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Baselworld 2018

Top picks from the annual centre of the time keeping universe


f you’re a watch enthusiast, or ‘horologist’ as they’re often called, you’ll know that March 2018 saw journalists, retailers and consumers flock to a usually sleepy corner of Switzerland for the largest and most impressive watch and jewellery show on earth: Baselworld 2018. For a few days a year, Basel, normally a modest provincial

city on the Swiss border with Germany and France, becomes undoubtedly the centre of the watch world. This year was particularly strong in terms of new models revealed from luxury high-value brands such as Patek Philippe, Chopard, Brietling and TAG Heur. Here, we bring Baselworld 2018 to you…


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TO CREATION After joining in 1990, Rebecca Hawkins, Boodles’ head of design, has helped establish the business as creators of art WORDS BY HANNAH PATTERSON . PHOTOS COURTESY OF BOODLES


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hen Boodles’ head of design, Rebecca Hawkins, was faced with the decision to choose a degree following a foundation course at the Birmingham Institute of Art Design, it was clear to everyone other than her what she should do. Having initially been interested in theatre and set design, she thanks her tutor for pointing her in the direction of what would transpire to be a life-long career. “They had expressed their surprise to me that I hadn’t considered jewellery design,” she remembers. “They thought it would have been obvious to me. After making the decision to pursue it, I’ve never looked back.” Rebecca joined Boodles at an exciting time. The company had already started looking to create pieces in-house, gradually moving away from working exclusively with outside designers. Initially, a lot of her work were commissions from clients, but it wasn’t long before she was keen to begin introducing collections. But, where to begin? “There wasn’t a strict brief when we began, but we wanted to create collections that had a strong identity, and were reflective of the Boodles brand,” she says. “We wanted to move forward, while staying true to ourselves. Developing the style that Boodles is now known for was an organic process.” It was impossible to begin with a completely blank canvas, as working for a company that has been established since 1798 means taking forward the essence of what is there. Rebecca identifies that essence as diverse, while still maintaining a strong sense of design and energy. She remembers a powerful desire to create uniquely beautiful pieces with exceptional attention to detail. “Nicholas Wainwright [Chairman of Boodles] loves pink diamonds, for example, so there was already some direction in place at the beginning," she reflects. It was a case of pulling it all together to form a brand identity that would work across all of the different stores.” The first piece that Rebecca designed for Boodles was The Hug; a plain, polished-gold set in a heart shape with a small crossover in the centre, to give the illusion of an embrace. The design was hugely successful, and marked the beginning of creating new collections each year. But the journey from concept to creation is one that's not to be hurried. Depending on the collection, it can take an average of two years for the initial idea to become a reality, and sometimes inspiration can incubate in the background for far longer than that.


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“Take the Poetry of Landscape collection, for example,” Rebecca highlights. “I wanted to create something that was inspired by the British landscape. I’d been collecting photos from my travels, as and when, but then the opportunity arose to design pieces for the Royal Ballet, which meant that the images and ideas had to be put on ice.” Indeed, an idea can sometimes be in the background for six years or more. “You start putting little pieces together over a period of time," adds Rebecca. "For this collection, landscape was at the core of it, but then there were other elements introduced by looking at, in particular, British painters, and studying how they viewed the land.” Rebecca favours the use of mood boards, which play an integral role in the development and editing process when it comes to refining the concept; old ideas get pushed out, and new ones are introduced, so that it all builds naturally to the final direction. It's an organic process, and the journey is not dissimilar to following a thread. “Each part is a different clue, and you’re working your way through a maze as you pull all of the ideas together," Rebecca explains. "That's what gives an indication of where it will sit within the collection – is it going to be a collection of one-offs, or very special, high-design pieces? Will it be something that we'll have available in each store, that's more accessible, where we do repeats of different lines? The two work in tandem during the journey from concept to final product – the conceptual and the practical.” Rebecca works with a wide variety of precious stones, most of which are sourced by Boodles director, Jody Wainwright. Whether the stones are sourced before or after design sketches varies from piece to piece; some sourcing will begin with the design, as stones have to be specially cut, but this cannot always be the case.

“If it’s something like the one-off Greenfire necklace, the stones have to come first, as they're very rare emeralds – we may never have found them,” recalls Rebecca. “If you’re making something that requires a particular type of emerald, it could take several years to collate all of the required material. We would find a set of stones and tailor the design to it.” Even with a careful balance between works of art and practical needs, Rebecca never finds that her creativity is stifled. Her secret? Having a constant awareness of the surroundings. She takes hundreds upon hundreds of photographs; little snaps of tiny moments that inspire her. Moreover, she's a firm believer that no idea comes out of the blue. “A lot of people seem to think that ideas strike like a sudden bolt of lightning, which, in some ways, they do, but it’s always the result of an accumulation of stimuli,” she points out. “There's a moment when everything you’ve been working on crystallises, but you can't just sit in a room and hope that something is going to happen; you have to keep searching, the more you put in, the more you put out.” It helps working for the sixth generation of a family that's passionate about what they do. Rebecca maintains that, even after all of her years in the industry, no one loves a piece of jewellery more than Nicholas Wainwright, a sentiment that comes across in his perfectionism. This embodiment of excitement and passion translates to the team and Rebecca herself, creating an exciting and energetic working environment – something that may be lost in a larger team. “It's this that always makes me strive to create something that's beautiful, fresh and individual,” she declares. “From the very beginning of the process, we know that we'll create something truly special.” ■

R e b e c c a’ s F a v o u r i t e D e s i g n “There are so many to list, but one that immediately springs to mind is a pair of cuffs that I designed for the 2008 Wonderland collection that depicting the tale of Sleeping Beauty. The design was a tableau; it was a metamorphosis of Sleeping Beauty’s hair, which then transformed into the thorns and other motifs that ran within it. “The cuffs were almost identical, but not quite – they were really unique. I particularly enjoyed the storytelling element; from the outset, there was a clear idea of what the story should be, but it also provided the challenge of getting the motifs to run through it in a really balanced way. I was so happy with how they turned out. “I’m usually very self-critical, but I was simply delighted with how these pieces ended up.” TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 35

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Eden diamond drop earrings, price on request

Dolce box graffiti, price on request

Long wallet, from £1,160

Metallic leather sandal with sequins, £765

Rose Imperiale, 75ml spray

Blenheim aftershave splash, 200ml


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Harder, better, faster, stronger Don’t miss our round-up of the latest, most cutting-edge tech products that are changing the game and defining the shape of things to come for users ■ AtariVCS, price TBC Formerly branded as the ‘Ataribox’, the VCS is set to ‘reinvent the way you game. Again’. The retro-inspired entertainment platform is based on PC technology, for which the iconic gaming brand took inspiration from 40 years of videogame history. Inspired by the memorable silhouette of the original Atari 2600, this fusion of old and new boasts a blend of modern lines and classic details in its old-school joystick and contemporary controller.

■ Apple HomePod, £319 Experience the power of Apple’s latest speaker, which adapts to wherever it’s playing in the room. The ultimate music authority, the HomePod brings together Apple Music and Siri to learn your taste in music, and is an intelligent home assistant, capable of handling everyday tasks and controlling your smart home. With its Appleengineered technology and advanced software, this elegantly designed, compact speaker takes the listening experience to a whole new level.

■ Magic Leap One, price TBC Take a leap of faith with this innovative head-mounted VRD. Engineered to be lightweight and comfortable for hours of exploration, Magic Leap’s Digital Lightfield technology is combined with environment mapping, precision tracking and soundfield audio, producing amazing experiences that feel natural. High-powered processing and graphics are streamlined in a lightweight pack that stays right by your side, while effortless navigation allows for a smooth, intuitive, fluid and sensory experience.

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■ Channel Master Stream+, price TBC Here’s a media player that integrates streaming services and games with live broadcast TV, and includes an on-screen channel guide with DVR capability to pause, rewind and record live television. The powerful Android TV platform includes Google Play store, Live Channels DVR and built-in Chromecast. Supporting Ultra HD TVs and High Dynamic Range for stunning visuals, Stream+ is the streaming box for antenna owners that’s not to be missed.

■ Samsung Galaxy S9, £739 Check out the revolutionary camera that adapts like the human eye. With its category-defining dual aperture lens, Samsung’s Galaxy S9 automatically switches between various lighting conditions with ease, making your photos look great, whether it’s bright or dark, day or night. Capture stunning pictures in bright daylight and super-low light, as the F1.5 aperture mode finds light even in the dark, to deliver vibrant photos late into the night.

■ Google Clips, price TBC This wireless camera is smart enough to recognise great expressions, lighting and framing to capture beautiful, spontaneous images in an instant. Using sophisticated AI technology, the hands-free accessory takes candid photos while you’re out and about, before you wirelessly connect to your phone to check out what you’ve shot later. It requires no intervention and means you can go about your day, allowing the lens to do the work for you.

■ Oculus Go, price TBC With Oculus Go, you can effortlessly enter virtual reality with no PC or wires attached. The all-in-one VR headset is designed to fit you, using breathable fabrics, adjustable straps and cutting-edge lenses, immersing you in over 1,000 VR games, social apps, 360° experiences and more. Step inside the films, games, sports and TV shows you love with your very own personal, portable cinema, and experience 3D as it was intended. TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 39

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Over 300 years later, House of Creed is still the definitive luxury scent, offering their guests an experience unlike any other


estled in Mayfair’s prestigious shopping district is the impeccable House of Creed boutique, which returned to its London roots three years ago from Paris. A scented haven of luxury and sophistication, 99 Mount Street invites guests to explore the rich heritage of the House of Creed, which has introduced the highest-quality, hand-blended original perfumes, historical family techniques and values with innovation. The unique story began in 1760, when

a pair of scented leather gloves were delivered to King George III by a new London tailoring company, founded by James Henry Creed in the same year as the young king’s accession. Carrying on the royal association, Queen Victoria – George III’s granddaughter – appointed Creed as an official supplier to the Royal Household. Then, in 1854, under the patronage of Napoleon III and his Empress, Eugénie, the stylish leader of European fashion, the House of Creed moved its headquarters to Paris. Victoria had praised Creed only too well to her fellow sovereigns. Now, take the time to immerse yourself in a world of unrivalled fragrance,

coveted candles, and rich bath and body care at the Creed Boutique. The exquisite lower ground floor offers a private and restful environment, where guests can experience luxurious and bespoke fragrance consultations, uncovering their perfect signature scent for any occasion. The boutique’s team of highly-trained experts can accommodate almost any fragrance need, guiding guests through an impressive journey of scent discovery, while enjoying a glass of Champagne. Creed also offers an exclusive monogramming service, so you can customise the bottle with date and initials for a truly personalised purchase. Creed has created a legacy of unparalleled scents and unique services, treasured by perfume connoisseurs and all admirers of quality, style and panache. Over the centuries, the Creed family has produced over 200 perfumes, all testifying to a unique creative spirit that's been passed, together with a keen inherited nose, from father to son through seven generations. A timeless, modern act of creation: perfume of the past, fragrance of the future. ■ Creed is located at 99 Mount Street, London, W1K 2TF, and is open Mondays through to Saturdays from 10am to 6pm. For more information, call 020 7495 1795 or visit TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 41

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More than bedding ... fully living.

‘Easy Breezy’ - A Ploh BedscapeTM

Delivering luxury sleep experiences at legendary hotels around the world (including The Savoy’s sister property - The Raffles Singapore.)

Enjoy the same at home.

Luxury Down Pillows . Duvets . Featherbeds . Bedlinens . Robes . Cashmere

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I always love the last place I’ve been, and, I have to say, my default setting would be India, where I was born. It doesn’t matter how many times you visit, you can never get near to visiting the whole of India. It’s so vast. It’s so fabulous. It’s so unbelievably different from north to south. It’s beautiful, it’s delicious, it’s chaotic, it’s colourful, it’s sensational, it’s tragic, it’s poverty-stricken, it’s richer than anything. It’s got every extreme you can think of. I love India. But alternatively, I also love Greece. The European countries I can’t even pick between – the hills of France, the mountains of Switzerland, that cold Nordic thing of Norway, the heat of Spain and Portugal. I adore Africa as well. And Australia, which I visited properly for the first time last year. I fell in love completely. And don’t get me started on the States.

Besides you, who's the best awards show host of all time? Stephen Fry! I love people who are funny, but kind. I’m not very keen on cruelty, or barbed things, or the political stuff; a lot of that goes over my head. But these awards are all about celebrating excellence in film. I’m not a stand-up comic or a satirist – I’m me, and everybody knows that I’m going to be me. So, I tend to like people like Stephen Fry, who are charming, but also very sweet and friendly to people. Where do you keep your own BAFTA Awards? Some people say, ‘Oh, I keep them in the lavatory’, but I have one in my bathroom, two in the living room and one in the study. They're absolutely beautiful, particularly the mask itself. When you’re given it, the plaque isn't attached – that’s given to you later – so I glued the plaques to the back so that they look more like statues than awards. You don’t feel too ‘look at me!’. When someone recognises you on the street, what do they usually say? They come up and say, ‘Hello, Joanna’ and talk to me properly. It’s mostly people who watch these documentaries. The days have gone when they might have shouted, ‘Hello, Purdey’ or ‘hello, Patsy’. Because they know me now as Joanna, they tend to come up and talk to me, and tell me, most interestingly, that maybe they went to see the Northern Lights because of a programme I was in, or that they want to go to India next year. It’s usually about the travel shows. What’s your favourite place that you’ve travelled? That’s like saying, ‘which of your children is your favourite?’.

So it’s a long list… It is a long list, so I don’t know what to say! Have you discovered a cure for jet lag? As soon as you get on the plane, put your mind to the time of the country or city you’re going to see. I always eat everything I’m offered. I drink everything I’m offered. And I sometimes watch films. Even when I’m going on long trips – Australia was the longest trip and we arrived in the afternoon, so you feel a bit weird, or to places like China, which is an immense journey – I just try to catch up when I can. Just know that it will pass in two days, so don’t get panic-stricken. If you’re awake at night, don’t panic about it. If you’re travelling in a car, snatch a 10-minute sleep. It’s like gasping for air when you’re swimming. Put your nose up above the water and you’ll be fine. Remember that: You’ll be fine. Is there anything you always steal from hotel rooms? I’ve never stolen anything. No – that’s an utter lie. It’s shower caps. Because then I go to hotels that aren't really hotels, but places where we have to lodge for the night, where they don’t have anything like that, so it’s good to have a shower cap for standing under an upside-down sprinkling can or something. What’s the last book you read? I read usually four or five at the same time. The last book I completed was a book about Anthony Powell by Hilary Spurling [Anthony Powell: Dancing to the Music of Time]. And what’s the last movie you saw? All of the BAFTA nominees. I watch them all, but I can’t remember the last one I saw. What’s your favourite thing about London? The tube. It’s the thing that I could least give up. When I came


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CELEBRITY to London, I shared a flat with three other girls on the fourth floor. It was a rented flat in Earl’s Court, right above the tube station. I’d grown up a country girl, and I’d been in a convent, then suddenly I came up to London, which was just paradise in its chaos and enormity. To be there every morning to hear them say, ‘The train now approaching on platform five…’ made me gasp. I used to go to work on the underground and it only cost 8p or something silly. I thought, ‘This is just insanely brilliant’ – getting on a tube and coming up at the right place. It took me a long time to realise that Green Park and Piccadilly are only a five-minute walk away. I know London so well now, and I go by tube virtually every day. I’m addicted to it. Do you take public transportation in other cities as well? In New York, when I was in a play there, I tried to walk the 26 blocks to the theatre from my little apartment down at 18th and 8th, but sometimes I’d come back on the subway. I just adore it.

Finally, what do you consider your greatest achievement? I’ve done nothing! I’ve been blessed, I’ve been lucky, I’ve been put in the way of fortune. I had a fantastic upbringing by the kindest people, who taught me to never give up and to never be rude. You can only live a day at a time, and that’s what I pass on. You can’t do tomorrow, and yesterday can’t be changed, but you can do today.


On the opposite end of the spectrum, what’s your greatest indulgence? Salted peanuts. KP. I’ve tried every kind, but have noticed that KP, to my palate, are the very best.

What's one thing you think a person can do on a daily basis to make the world a better place? Do it. Sometimes somebody will say, ‘To give £3 to something, text blah’. Just do it. If you see somebody sitting on the ground, go sit next to them. Don’t necessarily give them money, but say, ‘How’s it going? What’s your name?’, and shake their hand. Do something that you know is generous and kind. Unexpected kindness is always nice. Sometimes it’s just smiling. Think of somebody else, and do something exceptionally kind and unexpected. Help that woman who’s banging around on the underground with a little baby in a buggy. You’ll be amazed at how many of them aren’t helped. Give your seat up to somebody. Say to somebody, ‘How marvelous you look’. Just be kind.


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In celebration of Prince Harry’s wedding to Meghan Markle, consider serving up these deliciously regal treats from the Thames Foyer’s new Royal Afternoon Tea by The Savoy’s executive pastry chef, Ludwig Hely


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Every moment tells a story The world-renowned American Bar launches a new menu of characterful cocktails drawing inspiration from the work of iconic British photographer, Terry O’Neill


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London bred The wine experts at Corney & Barrow take us on a journey to their roots as London’s wine merchant


n 1780, when Westminster Bridge could still be considered ‘new’, Somerset House was under construction and tea had just become the favourite tipple of the masses, Edward Bland Corney started trading as an independent wine merchant in London’s Old Broad Street. Despite the limited selection of port, sherry and Bordeaux he had to offer, the business flourished, and in 1838, Edward’s son, Thomas, brought in his cousin, Robert Phillipson Barrow, to help with expansion plans – so creating Corney & Barrow, the city of London’s wine merchant. As luck would have it, the UK was set to become one of the largest markets for Bordeaux. With consumption increasing, British tastes had enough influence to impact production styles, resulting in the birth of Claret, and the evolution of sherry from Jerez in Spain. Some estimates show that by the mid-1860s, sherry accounted for over 40% of the wine Britain imported, and

while it may have been in plentiful supply, the quality would have differed enormously. Those of means sought out the best, buying from merchants with established relationships across Europe. This commitment to source has proven a solid foundation for the Corney & Barrow business, which continues to work closely, and often exclusively, with suppliers today. Boosted in 1870 by the British Government’s reduced tariffs on port from Portugal’s Duoro region, and on French wine in general, the original Corney & Barrow shop soon moved across the road to bigger premises. The golden age of UK wine drinking had arrived, and the country embraced a newfound love of fortified product, which actually improved during its voyage to London. Everyone from the Royal Family to paupers could now take advantage of continental finds; they would


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have tasted rather different to the drinks that we know today, as spices and other flavourings were often added to appeal to the 18th-century palate. By 1912, Corney & Barrow had received its first Royal Warrant from George V; a mark of recognition to those who have supplied goods or services for at least five years to the Royal Family. The business currently holds two, as suppliers to HM Queen Elizabeth II and HRH The Prince of Wales. It's the only wine company to have held three Royal Warrants concurrently, as suppliers to HM Queen Elizabeth II, HRH the Prince of Wales and, formerly, the late HM Queen Elizabeth, The Queen Mother. Through the proceeding centuries, the business grew first nationally (from London to the north of England and Scotland), and then internationally (now with offices in Hong Kong and Singapore). As the business expanded, it was able to introduce the world to some of its most prestigious estates; Domaine de la Romanée-Conti, Domaine Bonneau du Martray, Comte Georges de Vogüé and Clos de Tart, to name but a few. Yet, its humble origins hadn't been forgotten, and its privatelyowned status still dictates a commitment to integrity and excellence at every price point. The brand's ‘own label’ range, launched over 40 years ago, continues to showcase the best in class of wine types and styles. Today, there are 15 bottles to discover, each created by the buying teams in conjunction with the

great estates. Unlike the unmarked carafes of yesteryear, these labels have pedigree. Each has a vintage and a recognised grower to ensure that any occasion, from a midweek meal to an impromptu party, can be suitably complemented. Additionally, selling has now expanded from serving the needs of the private customer, to fulfilling the demands of those in hospitality, travel and service industries, where brands are built or destroyed by the quality and consistency of the products on offer. As official wine supplier to the Harlequins (considered London’s rugby team), a drink at the Stoop on match day is likely to have been supplied by Corney & Barrow. Scan the wine list of London’s leading hotels, restaurants, pubs and clubs, and it’s the same story: a well-kept secret still supporting the needs of its founding city. Since 2003, Corney & Barrow has been headquartered in a converted customs house near St Katharine’s Docks, less than two miles from where it all began. Stepping inside leaves you in no doubt as to this company’s history, and if you get the chance to attend any of the events often held there, you really should. True to its original aims, the company offers not just wine, but the wisdom of years of passion and experience, and an extended family of producers and vineyard owners waiting to be discovered. ■

The golden age of UK wine drinking had arrived

For more information on Corney & Barrow, visit TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 51

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The hundred-year mark

Rebecca Mauger, executive director for fundraising at the British Red Cross, reflects on the impact the organisation has had in the world’s most horrific humanitarian crises over the past century


ltogether, Rebecca Mauger has been with the British Red Cross (BRC) for 15 years, and is responsible for an annual income of over £150million, 950 staff, and the 20,500 volunteers who give their time to fundraising and staffing the charity’s shops. Now, the BRC has surpassed its 100th birthday due to adapting alongside the continuous evolution of modern conflicts and warfare, and the unfaltering support of thousands upon thousands of volunteers. During your time at the BRC, what do you feel have been the key achievements and campaigns? There are so many great things

that have happened at the BRC during my time with the organisation. Something that I believe we've consistently done well is strengthening other Red Cross national societies around the world; the Lebanese Red Cross, and the Syrian and Arab Red Crescent (SARC), for example, who we were working with before the Syria Crisis began. Our recent work with the Jo Cox Foundation and the Co-Operative on loneliness is certainly a source of pride. It's involved being part of some truly ground-breaking findings, and we've even seen the Government appoint a Minister for Loneliness. We continue to do amazing work with refugees in the UK. The BRC supported 15,000 refugees and asylum seekers

experiencing destitution in 2017 alone. In addition to our UK efforts, we continue to work in some of the world’s worst crises, including in Syria, Yemen and Bangladesh, to name just three. This work can be anything from Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH), to food distributions and agricultural training. We aim to help people prepare for crises, cope in the midst of them, and rebuild their lives in the aftermath. With the evolution of modern warfare and terrorism over the past century, how has the BRC adapted? When it comes to working in conflict zones, it's imperative that all parts of the movement adhere to the fundamental principle of neutrality, which means not taking sides in


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CHARITY This is a calling for people across the UK to show their support for the appeal by donating an item of jewellery to be auctioned by Christie's, at a glittering gala dinner at The Savoy on July 2, 2018 hostilities, or engaging at any time in controversies. In order to provide humanitarian support, we need to have access to victims of armed conflict. The Syrian and Arab Red Crescent (SARC) is a good example of how neutrality enables our work, as SARC has been able to reach, on average, 4.5million people in Syria – around one third of those in need – with aid every month. With regard to terrorism, the BRC played a large role in both the London Bridge and Manchester attacks last summer. We set up the UK Solidarity Fund to help people affected by the attacks, ensuring that victims didn't face short-term financial difficulties. We don’t predict events, or comment on the state of security, but support people after emergencies have happened, and any that may happen in the future. What are the largest BRC campaigns currently underway in 2018? One of our new volunteering schemes is really exciting, and comes off the back of a growing desire from the general public, who are increasingly wanting to help in the wake of disasters. Our Community Reserve Volunteer project allows the public to make a difference during any major emergency near them, connecting human crisis with human kindness. It takes five minutes to sign up and requires no training, but means that we have a pool of people to call on for assistance. We're also looking ahead to Refugee Week (June 18 to 24), when we'll be focusing on our work with refugees,

across the UK; from helping with family tracing and asylum cases, to offering life skills training to young refugees and practical assistance for those living in destitution. The BRC is the largest provider of refugee services in the UK. You’ve recently revived your Pearls for Life appeal... Yes, this is to help support people in crisis throughout the world, and to mark 100 years since the original campaign changed lives in the wake of World War One. It's a calling for people across the UK to show their support for the appeal by donating an item of jewellery to be auctioned by Christie's, at a glittering gala dinner at The Savoy on July 2, 2018. The original appeal was launched in 1918 by a group of amazing women, who pulled together to raise funds for families devastated by the war by auctioning some of their pearls. It was re-launched this March by our International Fundraising Committee, after we saw one of the largest humanitarian responses in the BRC’s history last year. Donations made to this appeal will go towards the British Red Cross' life-saving work on projects around the world; like equipping women who have lost their husbands in conflict with the skills to become the key income generators for their families, or establishing rest centres, providing psychosocial support and first aid, and working hand-in-hand with the emergency services to assist people when tragedy strikes.

Over 90,000 people volunteered for the BRC during World War One – is that passion still there? It is, and still so strong. We're hugely grateful for all of the work that they do for the organisation. We currently have 20,500 volunteers on our books. Finally, what does the city of London mean to the BRC? Our head office is in London! We’re based in Moorgate, with approximately 500 members of staff in the building. On a more serious note, the London Bridge terror attack was an example of how important the city is to our staff and volunteers. We’ve seen a huge amount of generosity directed towards the UK Solidarity Fund that we set up. At Grenfell, specially-trained British Red Cross volunteers were at the scene to offer immediate psychosocial support to those who needed it. We were focused on helping those affected to alleviate their immediate suffering, and to ensure that victims and their families didn't face short-term financial difficulties. Following the fire, the BRC carried out weeks of outreach work in the community with local NHS teams. Again, the generosity in the wake of the Grenfell Tower fire evidenced how dear London is to so many people. In total, the British Red Cross has raised an incredible £226,000 for the London Fire Relief Fund from the donated items. ■ To find out more about Pearls for Life, donate to the appeal, or attend the gala dinner, email TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 53

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Hannah Patterson sits down with Dennis Gocer of The Collective You to take a look at the world through his lens


ife for The Collective You moves at 100 miles per hour. I'm sat in the Beaufort Bar with principal and creative director Dennis Gocer’s executive assistant who's telling me about the past few months for the company; it’s an utter whirlwind of luxury fashion shoots, corporate galas and private parties. Living life at this pace, it’s unsurprising to me that Dennis is running a little late. Prior to our meeting, I'd seen a portrait of Dennis, but I’m sure that I would've recognised him regardless. There's a tremendous shift in energy when he walks into the bar. His impact is immediate; all warmth, smiles, charm and apologies for his tardiness. No more evident is his lust for life and passion for his art than when I ask if,

with the increasing popularity of Instagram, it bothers him that everyone seems to be a photographer these days. “No, I love it!” he cheers. “Expression isn’t limited to a select group of people. If you go to nightclub and everyone's dancing, it’s not because they're all professional dancers; everyone's dancing, and so they should!” It takes all of five minutes for Dennis to make me feel like he’s one of my lifelong friends. I'm clearly not the only one who's ever felt this way about him, evident in the


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TRANSPORT story of how he became a photographerin-residence at The Savoy. On a trip back from a job in North Africa, Dennis decided to treat the team to an extended layover in London on the way home to Vancouver, where the trio are based. After all, the logistics of transporting a studio filled with large, heavy and expensive equipment overseas can be somewhat exhausting. “We needed an oasis of calm,” says Dennis. “I didn’t know much about The Savoy when I was looking at hotels, except that it was iconic – one that comes to mind when you think of London. A mutual friend suggested that I reach out to [Managing Director] Phillip Barnes, another Vancouver native, during my stay, so I did.” In Dennis’ own words, a friendship blossomed organically between the two, and it was suggested that The Collective You and The Savoy should partner on a project, something that Dennis took with a pinch of salt. Consequently, it came as a surprise to him when he was contacted by the hotel a couple of months later to discuss a residency during London’s award season.

“It's very exciting to work in a hotel that understands exceptional hospitality, and enjoys the benefits of world-class partnerships. When you talk about luxury, The Savoy, to me, is the yardstick.” How Dennis got to where he is today is a true coming-of-age story, and it begins when he was nine years old and started earning an allowance from his parents. “I'd spend all of it on magazines. I used to love Rolling Stone when it was a large-format magazine, and Vogue and Vanity Fair,” he tells me. “These were all adult magazines, but I wasn’t reading them for the articles – it was the images that I loved. They were so impactful and beautiful; I used to cut out the adverts and editorials that really spoke to me, and create little exhibitions in my room.” Noticing how much money he was investing in these publications, his parents bought him a camera for his 12th birthday, a gift that became both his journal, and the main mode of exploring his creativity. “There were clues pointing to what kind of photographer I wanted to be,” Dennis remembers. “I was exclusively fixated on images of people, and the photographers

I was drawn to worked primarily in black and white. “It’s not that I wasn’t a fan of colour, I enjoyed the work of David LaChapelle, who worked in very vivid colour and was huge in the 1990s. But it didn’t sing to me in the way that black and white did.” When asked if he prefers to take candids or more structured portraits, Dennis indicates that it has to befit the subject. “A portrait is a document that reveals the relationship between subject and photographer,” he explains. “Sometimes it feels like a first date, while others can feel like you’ve been married for 20 years.” Dennis’ preference for portraiture comes from a genuine respect and admiration for the old photos he'd seen of his grandparents; the care and consideration that was taken back then – when portraits were commonplace – spoke to him, and is still a key influence to this day. “In the days of disposable cameras, when portrait photography was perhaps a little démodé, people would maybe only get a hasty passport photo done,” he considers. “I couldn’t help but wonder how we'd lost our way when it came to portrait photography.”


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PHOTOGRAPHY An obsession began in his teen years with creating a portrait selection of the most important people in his life. It began as an idea for posterity; a collection of sober pieces that weren't wrapped up in Hollywood glamour. Before he could begin, however, life’s pace picked up, and he became an art director for an advertising agency. In spite of art and commerce making strange bedfellows, he found that working in advertising didn't have a negative impact on his photos and creativity. “There’s an ambidexterity that advertising offers,” he remarks. “I can't just live in one world – art or commerce. I need both. I wasn’t excited by creating art as a form of catharsis. Intention is very important; commerce created a construct for my creativity, and provided some measurability.” The turning point came when he returned to Vancouver from working in Europe. Educating clients on art direction, something that hadn't been as necessary on the continent, had begun to frustrate him. He'd taken the creativity for granted abroad, where he had found that the people a lot more accepting of it. Dennis had begun to feel a little impassioned. He'd kept up his photography on the side, under the name The Collective You, which had begun to reveal itself as a sustainable business.

“When you put your work out there, you never know how it's going to be received,” he notes. “My style isn't Vogue, it’s simply the way I see the world. It was always a risk that this niche style wouldn’t resonate with enough people to become a viable business,” he notes. “Now, I've yet to meet a group – regardless of age, gender, colour or creed – that hasn’t responded positively to this type of portraiture.” Dennis adds that it's difficult to measure a person’s response to their portrait, and he's exceptionally humble about both his talent and work, sometimes coming across a little private about his creations. The portraits are primarily for the personal collection of the subjects – is that why he rarely posts on social media? Dennis says yes, but his assistant mentions a type of perfectionism. “I’m trying to improve,” Dennis laughs. “I’m a lot better than I used to be, but everything I do is a work in progress. The good thing about what I do is that I’ve never felt stuck in perfection when it comes to creation. I'm so grateful for social media, as it's opened so many doors to a wealth of opportunities. “But that’s not the only reason. We want our work to be part of a larger conversation.” ■ For more information, visit

Guest experience

Family Portrait Damien and Jacqueline Cuming have been regular guests at The Savoy for over 25 years. Here, they tell us what their portrait means to them… We brought our grandchildren for a night’s stay at the hotel in December 2017 to begin their Christmas celebrations. During that visit, Richard and Kasia, our impeccable butlers, showed us their own portraits by The Collective You, and advised us that Dennis and his team were coming to the hotel in February to offer this unique service. The Royal Suite was simply amazing, and the perfect location for the portraits to be taken, while Dennis and his team were truly professional and made us feel completely at ease. The shoot was a very enjoyable experience, and we'd highly recommend The Collective You to all. We left with truly special memories from an iconic location, and portraits that we, and our loved ones, will treasure for years to come. TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 57

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Boy Wonder Hannah Patterson catches up with artist Zoom Rockman to talk inspiration and the city he loves

So, Zoom, how long have you been drawing for? As long as I can remember. What are the main sources of inspiration for you? I’ve always been inspired by what's been going on around me – my environment. I live in North London above a parade of shops, so my very early work featured the local shopkeepers, takeaways, bus stops, and things that I observed on the street. ‘Skanky Pigeon’, the character that I eventually did for the Beano, TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 59

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TRANSPORT big deal it was to be associated with such an iconic British comic. It’s their 80th birthday this year and I’m their youngest regular contributor – that’s something I’m really very proud of. And what impact did it have on you as an artist? I started to include a lot more jokes and details in the background, and I improved my visual humour. What did it teach you about the industry? Everyone was really kind to me because I was so young, but I didn’t want to take advantage of that. I wanted to be professional. I always kept to deadlines, tried to take onboard any advice, learned to constantly be on the lookout for new ideas and, most importantly, deal with having work rejected, and to get over it quickly. This type of art isn’t just about the imagery, but the storytelling – what stories do you like to tell? I enjoy telling funny stories. I want to make people laugh.

was inspired by all of the pigeons that used to live on the roof and stare at me through the windows. As I got older, wider influences started to creep in – what I’d been learning about at school, things I was watching on TV, what was on the news, the video games I was playing. It all fed into storylines and drawings that can be seen in my comics and artwork. It’s exactly the same today. And who do you admire in the world of satire? I’m mostly inspired by the work of Peter Cook and Dudley Moore, I have recordings of them that I listen to. Unfortunately, there’s a lot of missing film footage of their performances together, because the BBC wiped most of it. Last year, I illustrated a sketch that I found on YouTube called ‘What’s the worst bloody thing that could happen to you?’, which is featured in my latest comic. I made a transcript by listening to them over and over again, and screen-grabbed every frame. I was really anxious not to leave out any words or mannerisms, because they were flawless.

And art? Hieronymous Bosch. I especially love all of the strange people and creatures that he puts into his work; I collect the 3D models of them that are available to buy. I’ve only ever seen two of his paintings in real life – there’s one at the National Gallery, and another at Hampton Court Palace. It’s important to me that I take every advantage of living in London, and I try to visit the galleries as often as possible. My favourite recent exhibition was Soutine’s Portraits at The Courtauld. He’d painted a selection of characters that worked in hotels in 1920s Paris. I loved how he was able to put so much personality in their faces and posture – it truly brought them to life for me. You were published in the Beano at the age of 12 – what did this mean to you personally? At the time, it felt a little strange because it was the Beano which had inspired me to draw cartoon strips in the first place. But, I just got on with it and didn’t really give it much thought. Now that I’m older, I appreciate what a

For you, what is it about comics that make them an excellent vessel for storytelling? There’s no budget restrictions in drawing comics, as you don’t have to pay for CGI. You can literally make anything happen and have anyone you want as the lead characters. What's the importance of using satire for political and social commentary? I think it’s our job to call out anything ridiculous or ironic that politicians or the people in charge say or do. I find it interesting that a lot of history books use old satire cartoons as illustrations. It’s a great record of what the general public’s mood has been during any period of our extensive history. In order to be relevant, you must keep your finger on the pulse of society… The first cartoon I had published in Private Eye was of the Houses of Parliament in cladding similar to that of Grenfell Tower. I’m really proud of that particular piece, because I think the Grenfell Tower fire is going to be looked back on as one of the big stories of the


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decade, if not the century. The fact that the safety of the poorer people in society was ignored in the same way that it was on the Titanic a 100 years earlier is really shocking to me. You've commented on politics in your work – is it important to you that people under the voting age discuss and involve themselves in politics early on? Is this something that you hope to encourage through your work? I think it’s really important to encourage kids to think for themselves, and not just adopt the same political views as their parents or the celebrities that they look up to. The only way to do that is to always go to the source of a news story, rather than how it’s reported, because different aspects of the media report stories with their own agenda. Whenever any politician makes a speech, it’s important to watch the whole thing, because when they’re broken down into highlights on the news, it’s easy to misinterpret what they were trying to say.

With regard to your ‘London Tourist’ drawings, what is it that you love about this city, and why draw it? Growing up in London is exciting. When I walk around, I always feel like I’m at the centre of everything that’s happening in the world. Moreover, the skyline is always evolving. I like to see the old with the new – Tower Bridge with the Gherkin and the Shard in the background. I love to draw buildings, but not just the pretty stuff. One day I’ll be drawing Buckingham Palace, and the next I’ll be drawing a rundown house on Turnpike Lane. Most of the buildings where I live in Haringey were mainly built in the 1880s, so you get this fantastic mix of Victorian architecture with takeaways and discount shops. I’m really aware that things are changing very quickly in areas like mine, so I think it’s important to draw them and record the transformation. Last year, the last remaining gas holder in Hornsey was dismantled by the

council and I managed to draw it in it’s final two weeks. What future projects of yours can we look forward to? I’m working on a set of Churchill drawings to be displayed by his table at Simpson’s in the Strand. The more I research him, the more interested I’ve become in his character, and wonder what his take would be on the modern world. There’s also a lot of other really interesting figures from history who used to eat at Simpson’s, including Benjamin Disraeli, William Gladstone, Charles Dickens and Alfred Hitchcock. I’m currently thinking about bringing them all back to life in cartoon form – maybe in a graphic novel. I’ve just been made Patron of the Lakes Comic Art Festival in Kendal, and I’ll be doing something there in October. I’m also collaborating with Lincoln University to get some of my work animated. ■


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DAVID by Stella Kapezanou Oil and acrylic on canvas 170cm x 210cm £3,900

PENWITH HAMLET by John Piper 100cm x 120cm Oil on canvas


. £4,800 . Eleven and a half

MOORLAND COTTAGES by John Piper Oil on canvas 100cm x 120cm £4,800



. Eleven and a half


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GEOGRAFIA DEL COLOUR by Maria Jose Concha Oil on canvas 100cm x 200cm £4,500 DECORAZONgallery



AGAVE by Michele Mikesell 122cm x 122cm Oil on canvas £6,000 DECORAZONgallery




editor's pick

Michele Mikesell Based in Dallas, Texas, American-born Mikesell is an internationally-acclaimed artist. She's been represented by DECROAZRON Gallery since 2006, and her work can be found in private and corporate collections, and exhibited at art fairs across the globe.

DREAMSCAPE, LOST GARDENS by Abigail McDougall 132cm x 102cm, framed £3,500 Watercolour on wood


THE GIRL IN MIU MIU by Stella Kapezanou Oil and acrylic on canvas £3,900


. 210cm x 170cm

. Bristol Contemporary

CASCADE, BRECON BEACONS by Abigail McDougall Watercolour on wood 62cm x 62cm £1,600 Bristol Contemporary



“I'm influenced by a diverse and extremely eclectic group of different movements, including Abstract and German Expressionism, Art Informal and children’s art, as well as the 17th-century Dutch masters and the current Pop Surrealist movement. I work with little or no pre-conceived finished piece. My process is constant acting and reacting, from and within the marks subliminally laid into the paint.” MICHELE MIKESELL, 2015

THE LAST BALLOON by Michele Mikesell Oil on canvas 152cm x 102cm £6,000 DECORAZONgallery




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Having achieved a West End transfer, what do you think it is about this story that resonates with such a substantial audience? I think initially it appeals to lovers of opera and people who love David Hare’s writing, but now audiences have a deeper understanding of the story. Although, on first sight, it's absolutely about Glyndebourne, the beginning of the festival and the family behind it, there’s also a story being told about three extraordinary men who were given a safe haven from Nazi Europe. They saved this quintessentially English art form as much as they established a truly unique way of producing opera. Glyndebourne remains the only

private opera house in the world and I think the story resonates because it’s about making art, it’s about the sacrifices that people make, and it’s about a time in British history when we could open our doors to political refugees, and our life here was made all the better for it. Why is the story of the Glyndebourne opera house an important one to tell? The process of taking something from an idea to a real thing, that the rest of the world has access to is always intriguing. Lots of people dream, but when that dream becomes a reality, you want to know how it happened, and the lengths to


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TRANSPORT great because you both know where you are – it’s completely balanced and full of trust. It doesn’t really get much better.

which people went to make it happen. It’s also very much about John Christie and Audrey Mildmay and their extraordinary relationship. They met later in life, when she was 30 and he was 50, and were utterly devoted to each other. It’s very much a relationship of its time, but the balance of that and their devotion to one another is just a beautiful love story, and one that’s fantastic to perform. The instant connection that they had didn’t diminish under the pressure of creating a huge phenomenon, but glued them together, for it was a passion that they shared.

Do you enjoy playing romantic leads? To get to act on any level is a gorgeous thing, and it’s a privilege to get to perform new writing and coin roles for the first time, and to play a part that engages so deeply with another actor. Acting is about the chemistry and the space between two performers, which you both invest in and engage with. It’s an honour to play opposite Roger Allam, who's a genius – I love him. We both care about creating the right music for each scene, and telling that story as honestly and as clearly as we can. When you have that relationship with any colleague, it’s

Audrey could be considered another influential woman who's been lost to the history books – why is it important to tell her story? She’s very much a woman of her time, but her story is interesting because so little is known about her, and yet all of the other figures that have passed through the Glyndebourne house, and have created opera over the years, have left a legacy that has been repeatedly written about and enjoyed. Audrey’s story is such a familiar one about a woman setting off on her own journey, who then marries and has to put aside something of her own ambition to support her husband, and yet her husband is very much centre-stage. It’s a very typical 1950s story that doesn’t happen so much now. We live in these extraordinary times when women are being given the permission to complain about the way things have been done so far, and want to change them for the generation after us. We’re being given permission to say that this is not right, we want to change it, and we want to know about the people who have been silent for so long. This play, and Audrey’s story, is very typical of a time in which she was allowed to have a choice, but it wasn’t necessarily recorded. I think hers is one of millions of womens' stories who were incredibly intelligent, in influential positions, and were making things happen around them, but the way in which history has been told means they've slipped into the index. We need to put them back on the front cover, and breathe life into them, to give to future generations in order to be treated equally on all levels. What originally drew you to Audrey as a person who you wished to portray on the stage? The chance to play a woman over many periods of history is a joy as a performer. Normally, you step on the rollercoaster at the beginning of a night and see it through to the end, but when you tell a story that jumps between time zones,


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THEATRE it’s much more of an acting exercise, and keeps the audience on their toes. You see Audrey in her nubile days in 1934, when European refugees arrived and successfully put together the festival, and again in 1951 when she was dying, so the story is being told embryonically and retrospectively. Bob Crowley, the designer, describes it as a "memory play" - you have to stay with it as an audience, right through to the end. It’s like a jigsaw or a piece of poetry, really, and it’s absolutely beautiful. What do you want the audience to take away from this depiction of Audrey? You have no control over an audience's reaction, but I hope they see that there was another person involved in Glyndebourne, and will recognise the bigger picture. It’s not just about making opera: It’s a story about an unforeseeable set of circumstances that resulted in this labour of love, which Glyndebourne continues to be. John Christie, Audrey Mildmay, Fritz Busch, Carl Ebert, Rudolf Bing - every single one of these people is equally important in the creation of this festival, and I think that very few things happen so incidentally in that way. It’s

because of their passion and intellect that this phenomenal labour of love and talent was even allowed to happen. With the #timesup and #metoo campaigns gaining momentum across all industries, what’s the significance of bringing hidden figures like Audrey into the spotlight? It’s a really tough one in that there’s nothing in this situation where a woman had to tolerate any level of abuse or pain, but I suppose the story is of a woman whose tale got lost because she belonged to a patriarchal society, and it’s a story that we're trying to retell for a modern ear. In that way, there's a connection with the nature in which women’s stories are being told, and the way in which we're hearing them. They both come out of men being on top, and we want to change that, creating something more equal, open and safe. ■ The Moderate Soprano runs at the Duke of York’s Theatre from Friday April 6 to Saturday June 30. Tickets available at, or call 0844 871 7623.

G ly n d e b o u r n e at a glance

■ The first curtain rose on May 28, 1934 ■ The first season lasted for two weeks, with six performances each of Le nozze di Figaro and Così fan tutte ■ Glyndebourne founded the Edinburgh Festival, subsidised by the City of Edinburgh, in 1947 ■ In 1966, George Christie announced plans to start a touring company, and two years later, Glyndebourne Touring Opera (GTO) made its inaugural tour ■ By 1977, the opera house held 850 people, compared to the original capacity of 300 ■ The Education Department was established in 1986, and since then has undertaken an array of projects with the local community and schools ■ In 1987, Sir George Christie announced the idea of building a completely new opera house ■ Today, Glyndebourne reaches around 150,000 people a year, with over 120 live opera performances


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George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham, by Michiel J. van Miereveld, 1625

Section of the Thames from map by William Morgan, 1682


n 1381, the magnificent Savoy Palace belonging to John of Gaunt was burned to the ground by rebels during the Peasants’ Revolt. All precious objects that didn't burn were cast into the Thames. Immensely wealthy, Gaunt owned vast estates and dozens of castles throughout the kingdom. As the uncle and power behind the throne of the boy-king Richard II, he was widely detested and the main target of the peasants’ discontent. Fortunately for Gaunt, he was out of town at the time. For centuries, the land along the Thames roughly from today’s Embankment Station to the Temple district was dominated by the mansions and palaces of the most powerful and wealthy in England. They became the homes of bishops, aristocrats and courtiers made good – men such as Walter Ralegh and William Cecil in the late 16th century. Typically, these palaces were built within

a walled garden containing a fancy watergate and stairs leading to the river, which was then still unbanked and much wider than today. Where The Savoy now sits, the Savoy Palace was located roughly in the middle of this historical millionaires’ row. Salisbury House was its neighbour upriver with Somerset House on its opposite flank, across where Lancaster Place joins Waterloo Bridge today. The mid-16th to mid-17th century was the heyday of these ‘Strand mansions’, as we may call them, when over a dozen great family houses rose up along the medieval thoroughfare which linked the cities of London and Westminster. That tempestuous century between the English Reformation and the English Civil War saw royal favourites rise and fall at the monarch’s whim or their own recklessness; politics then were as hazardous as they were rewarding.


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HISTORY After Henry VIII died, Edward Seymour, Duke of Somerset, became Lord Protector of England, ruling on behalf of his nephew Edward VI. He built a palace on the site that Henry had bequeathed him. It became Somerset House, a much later version of which remains today. Seymour appointed it lavishly, including a great library stocked with books that he confiscated from the Guildhall. Like Gaunt before him, he was widely disliked. Exposed after the young king’s death, he was executed at the behest of Parliament in 1552. After Elizabeth I’s time, Somerset House became the residence of Queen consorts. Durham House belonged to the bishops of Durham from the early 14th-century. It came into royal ownership under Henry VIII, briefly returned to Durham under Mary I, and then was granted to Sir Walter Ralegh by Elizabeth I. Under Ralegh, it became the main hang-out of London’s wealthy tobacco traders, and also the home of two Algonquin-native Americans, the first to reside in England. After the Queen died, Ralegh lost his house, for James I hated him as much as he hated tobacco. Many years later, the site was used by the Adam brothers to build the Adelphi Buildings.

York Watergate today by Mike Paterson, 2018 Old Somerset House at high tide by Leonard Knyff, 1707; engraved by Johannes Kip, 1707

Essex House was built in 1575 by the Queen’s close friend Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester. Eventually, it passed to his impetuous stepson Robert Devereux, 2nd Earl of Essex, also a firm royal favourite – that was until he led an armed rebellion against Elizabeth in 1601. His house was the scene of his final downfall and arrest before being decapitated on Tower Hill. George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham was the close friend – some say lover - of James I. He built York Palace immediately to the east of what is now Villiers Street. The palace’s beautiful Watergate, installed by Inigo Jones in 1626, is the only survivor of its kind. It still stands – weathered but proud – in Victoria Embankment Gardens. All of the grand houses along the Strand had their own private watergate and stairs. There were no bridges nearby whatsoever, so employing the services of watermen was the best option, both across and along the river. Another exceptionally unpopular royal favourite, George Villiers was assassinated in 1628 in Portsmouth. His killer, John Felton, was executed, but became a popular hero with the public. Gradually after the 17th century, most of this area became infilled and overbuilt with new roads and town houses. Finally, in 1866, the Duke of Northumberland reluctantly accepted a massive pay-off from the Metropolitan Board of Works, to vacate his 260-year-old mansion near Trafalgar Square, and make way for a large thoroughfare linking Embankment and the Strand. It had been the London home of the powerful Percy family since 1605. Today, you can easily explore this swathe of streets and alleys between the Strand and the river, searching for clues to the once-great mansions and gardens that stood here proudly for a time. You can imagine their rich and powerful occupants – statesmen, archbishops, dukes and queens – now ghosts. ■ Mike Paterson is the director of London Historians, who always welcome new members. TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 69

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Through the keyhole

We take you inside the most luxurious properties in London PHOTOS COURTESY OF HARRODS ESTATES

WILTON PLACE, BELGRAVIA, LONDON SW1 Guide price: £14million Property type: Terraced house Lower ground floor ■ Kitchen/breakfast/family room ■ Bedroom five ■ WC/shower room ■ Utility room ■ Boiler room ■ Patio ■ Plant room Upper ground floor ■ Entrance hall ■ Sitting room/study ■ Dining room First floor ■ Drawing room ■ WC ■ Terrace Second floor ■ Master bedroom suite with dressing area and en suite bathroom Third floor ■ Bedroom two with dressing area and en suite Fourth floor ■ Bedroom three with dressing area and en suite Fifth floor ■ Bedroom four with en suite ■ Air-conditioning and under-floor heating throughout To arrange a viewing, contact Harrods Estates Knightsbridge on 020 7225 6506


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Trends are constantly evolving. How do you interpret them without stifling your own creativity or personal taste? I actually feel quite strongly about this, because I don’t actively follow trends in interiors. This is largely because of the sheer scale of the projects that we work on. Some of them can take upwards of two years, and trends can change vastly in that amount of time. We start off with the initial concept, where we get a feel for the look and furnishings, before going into the build stage, which can take anything up to two years, then we pick up the furniture around six months before the completion. Trends move substantially in that time, and I don’t like to make any decisions on something so volatile. We work on very high-value projects, and our clients are spending a huge amount of money, so it’s not appropriate to base any decisions on anything that’s too 'trendy' or disposable. So, you wouldn’t take notice of Pantone’s colour of the year, Ultraviolet? Do you like it? Not at all! I just think it’s a really trashy colour and that it’s perfectly okay to ignore it. If these types of trends are important to you, however, then I'd recommend updating the interiors using finishing touches and fabrics – cushions are always a good choice. Interiors are taken very seriously… I'd say that it’s up there with fashion in the sense that people are very passionate about it, and you don’t have to be a professional designer to get involved with it. Instagram, and social media as a whole, has made interior design a lot more accessible for everyone. It’s an excellent source of inspiration. Do people come to you with far more fixed ideas as a result of this accessibility? If I’m honest, it’s a mix. Some allow us to take the

Luxury interior designer Laura Hammett talks creativity and not taking the trends too seriously WORDS BY HANNAH PATTERSON . PHOTOS COURTESY OF LAURA HAMMETT


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INTERIORS compromise creatively and find solutions, plus you get a lot more feedback, which is always very rewarding. There are pros and cons with all of it. Much like black will never go out of fashion, are there any interior staples that you feel will always be in style? You can never predict the longevity of a piece, but something that's been popular for a very long time is antique brass. It’s a finish that I love, because it adds such a warm dimension to any colour scheme. Lots of our clients like to keep things quite neutral and soft, but if you add antique brass to something like door handles, or taps in bathrooms, it adds such a richness. That’s something that's definitely here for a while. With regard to tones and shades, colours that again may not be around forever, but certainly long enough to be used, are warmer bronze and Champagne tones. A lot of my clients prefer their interiors fairly neutral, and I believe that the cooler grey shades have had their day. Particularly in this country, where it's grey most of the year, I’m noticing that a lot of people are opting to add warmth to their interiors. This usually translates in our choice of paint, stone and fabrics; we’re keen to add a little more softness to our work.

helm with regard to creative control. They tend to have multiple homes, are very busy, and would like us to simply tell them what to do. People who approach us with projects tend to have seen a lot of our portfolio online, so they may point out particular touches that they like, but overall we can oversee everything. On the other end of the spectrum, there are those who view the project as their baby, and have waited years and years to get it off the ground. They’ve got a lot of ideas and they want to be a lot more involved. This sometimes makes for more interesting work, as you have to

How important do you believe trends really are? We want to create something that will stand the test of time, but with little hints and details that will help to make the design current. There are two halves to this company – one is architecture, the other is interior design. Obviously with the architecture, it's very important to us and the clients that it will stand the test of time and not feel dated. Furniture is a little easier, but I wouldn’t pick any significant pieces such as sofas and carpets based on a new trend. Cushions are good for keeping design current, and incorporating interesting fabrics, but I tend not to consciously follow trends. Unconsciously? I think there’s a subconscious awareness, and obviously I'm aware of what's going on in the world of interior design. I pay attention to interior magazines and keep an eye on what's occurring in the industry – particularly hotel design – so I believe, subconsciously, that I pick up on things. It’s not like I sit down and think ‘Okay, wicker is a trend at the moment, how can I use it?,’ because that simply isn’t our style. We're much more timeless and classic. ■ TO LONDON, WITH LOVE / 73

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Through the keyhole

We take you inside the most luxurious properties in London PHOTOS COURTESY OF LAURA HAMMETT

Property Grade II-listed town house with connecting mews Seven bedrooms | Eight bathrooms Location Belgravia, London Design Laura Hammett Room of note Master suite featuring a floating headboard wall that conceals a dressing area. There's also a glamorous master bathroom with fireplace and hidden mirror television. Key pieces The bespoke curved sofas in the formal drawing room using Laura Hammett’s signature tonal fabric combination of satin and velvet.


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Monaco six-seater, £765




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£10 £110


£24 £148










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Amsterdam’s iconic canals and winding, narrow streets call to travelers all year round


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A panorama of The Roman Baths in Bath

Don’t have time to leave the city for a day? Consider venturing out to Kew Gardens, a massive botanical garden west of the city, or to Chiswick House, a stately home built in 1729, to discover something new and unexpected.

Medieval half-timber houses and River Stour in Canterbury Old Town


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“I always feel like my characters are a bit of a challenge, but my role on Peaky Blinders was especially so"

one to watch


Kate Phillips’ first onscreen role as Jane Seymour in BBC Two’s Wolf Hall (2015) came with some pressure. The British actress, who grew up near Hampton Court, and studied drama at London’s Guildhall after attending the University of Leeds, credits Wolf Hall director Peter Kosminsky for giving her a chance to get into the business. “The training in drama school kickstarted my career, really,” she says. “I left early and got my first gig as Jane

Seymour. My first scene was with Mark Rylance, so that will go down as a very frightening, but very cool, moment in my life. It was like trial by fire, but an amazing one.” The actress has since appeared in episodes of The Crown (2016), War & Peace (2016) and The Alienist (which is currently streaming on Netflix in the UK), but it’s been Phillips’ work as Linda Shelby on BBC Two’s Peaky Blinders that’s really pushed her to the next level,

particularly since she’s appeared in two series so far. She’s also preparing to shoot the fifth installment this summer. “I always feel like my characters are a bit of a challenge,” the actress explains. “But my role on Peaky Blinders was especially so. Over the course of season four, my character’s journey flipped on its head. Reading the scripts and having to grow into that development was so interesting, and I so enjoyed doing it. It’s been really exciting to get into this woman, who's a bit more knowing and artful. She’s got a lot of agency and more power than you might have expected.” Next up, Phillips has two movies, The Little Stranger and The Aftermath, both out later in 2018. She appears alongside Keira Knightly and Alexander Skarsgärd in the latter, and in both films Phillips continues her unbroken streak of period pieces. “I think The Aftermath is my most current project, set in 1946,” she laughs. “I’m really extending my casting.” However, the actress isn’t looking exclusively for period pieces; she’s open to anything with a good story and a strong character arc. “TV work is really quite exciting, and truly beautifully done right now,” she notes. “It’s really brilliant quality at the moment. For me, it’s not about moving into film or TV – I simply want to do as many exciting projects as possible, which have lots of talented people working on them.” ■


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Savoy issue 8 2018  

The in-house magazine for The Savoy Hotel, London

Savoy issue 8 2018  

The in-house magazine for The Savoy Hotel, London