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Merry Christmas To All Our Readers

The county’s finest magazine wishes our readers the finest festive season!

New Year’s Eve Style

Festive partywear, accessories and cosmetics

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- DECEMBER 2017 -

welcome letter Rob Davis

Editorial Director

First and foremost, it’s incumbent upon me to wish you a very Merry Christmas and an equally Happy New Year.

It has been a remarkable year for the Pride team, from the expansion of our team to the refurbishment of our offices, to the relaunch of our magazine in its beautiful new bond format with bold and brave new cover artwork, for which we’ve received overwhelmingly enthusiastic feedback.

Production Director

There will also be a final flurry of excitement to 2017 as we count up the thousands of votes we’ve received for our Restaurant of the Year awards. As you read this we’ll be visiting our winners to offer our congratulations in person, so many thanks if you’ve voted, and please do look out for our next edition to see who you’ve nominated as the county’s best restaurants.

Zoie Wilkinson

If you’re a fellow chocaholic, we also visit a local chocolatier in this edition. Helen Buff creates lovely seasonal treats great for gifts and for the dinner table after lunch on Christmas Day. Another unique gift suggestion comes from Stamford artist Karen Neale. She creates stunning panoramic illustrations.

Ian Bagley

Advertising Director

Back to this edition though, where we’re taking the stress away from Christmas cooking with The Olive Branch’s Sean Hope. He prepares Christmas lunch properly with turkey and all the trimmings.

Finally, we really hope you enjoy this festive edition, and the whole team at Rutland Pride wishes you a very merry Christmas and a happy new year. Our best wishes for a wonderful month,

Emily Brown

Sales Director

Julian Wilkinson, Publisher and Managing Director 3


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FEATURES 10 27 20 40

HIGH SOCIETY Stamford Georgian Ball and the Stamford Bull Run as part of the Georgian Festival. GIFT GUIDE A selection of local gifts in time for Christmas. ARTIST Local artist Karen Neale’s

stunning panoramic simple paintings and illustrations.

CHOCOLATIER Rutland’s very own chocolatier Helen Buff making chocolatey treats this season.

FOOD & DRINK 48 58

CHRISTMAS LUNCH The perfect Christmas lunch served by the Olive Branch’s Sean Hope. Follow his seasonal recipes.

DINING OUT Our restaurant this month is the Marquess of Exeter in Lyddington run by Brian Baker.


HOMES & GARDENS 70 78 82 86

HOMES A truly spectacular property this month; South House, part of the Mansion House at Burley on the Hill is currently on the market for £1.7m.

JAMES SELLICKS An estate agents with over 20 years of history and £2.3 trillion amount of properties sold.

OLIVER’S KITCHENS You can have a stunning new kitchen fitted just in time for Christmas with Oliver’s Kitchens. GATES GARDEN CENTRE six of the 12 beautiful Christmas themes at the popular garden centre.


102 WEDDINGS A beautiful winter 111

wonderland wedding at Rushton Hall.

FASHION Our favourite fashions with a very red colour theme, followed by a selection of stunning ball gowns.

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Rutland Pride magazine is delivered free of charge, via Royal Mail, to high value homes in the county. Our circulation is to properties in the top three council tax bands - homes which are predominantly worth over ÂŁ300,000. This guarantees the magazine has an affluent readership commensurate with our content. In addition the magazine is also sold in over 200 supermarkets and newsagents including Waitrose, Marks & Spencer, WHSmith Tesco, Asda, Co-Op and Morrisons. Our in-house distribution team also works hard to hand-deliver the magazine to selected hotels and restaurants, doctors, dentists, executive motor dealerships and golf clubs. This helps to ensure we have a continued presence, right across the county. The magazine also has more social media fans than any other Rutland magazine, and we are available to read free of charge, online on your tablet, computer, laptop or mobile phone via our website and via the Readly and Issuu platforms. If your business would benefit from being showcased to the wealthiest people in Rutland, please call our friendly sales team on 01529 469977.


In print, and to view on your computer, tablet or mobile device from


By supplying editorial or advertising copy to Rutland Pride you accept in full the terms and conditions which can be found online at In the event of an advert or editorial being published incorrectly, where Pride Magazines Ltd admits fault, we will include an advert of equivalent size, or equivalent sized editorial, free of charge to be used in a future edition, at our discretion. This gesture is accepted as full compensation for the error(s) with no refunds available. Selected images in our content may be sourced from

Pride Magazines Ltd., Elm Grange Studios, East Heckington, Boston, Lincs PE20 3QF

Tel: 01529 469977 Fax: 01529 469978 |


Managing Director: Julian Wilkinson. Production Director: Ian Bagley. Advertising Director: Zoie Wilkinson. Sales Director: Emily Brown. Editorial Director: Rob Davis. Features Editor: Tilly Wilkinson. Customer Care Manager: Mandy Bray. Distribution: Joe Proctor. IT: Ryan Potter. Office Manager: Sue Bannister. Account Manager: Lauren Chambers. Sales Executives: Hannah Boyle, Tamer Hodgson, Amie Hayward, Carissa Clay, Hayley Scott, Izzy Wilkinson and Cassy Ayton.

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Globetrotter Hits the Big Screen

RUTLAND’S SARAH OUTEN IS CURRENTLY LOOKING FOR FUNDING FOR A FILM RUTLAND The local adventurer Sarah Outen has travelled solo around the world on her ‘London to London via the World’ trip, by kayak boat and cycle. Sarah is now looking for £40,000 of funding to help turn her incredible journey into a documentary film. She’s looking to use the footage captured on her trip. During her daring trip she became the first woman to row solo from Japan to Alaska and the first woman to row the mid Pacific from West to East. She has already teamed with a filmmaker Jen Randall, to create the 90-minute documentary film. “I always wanted to make a film about the journey and that’s one of the reasons why I took footage while I was travelling,” says Sarah Outen about the film.

“It will feature footage from the trip plus there will be bits of me which will be filmed at a later date.” “The footage used will be that which we have decided is the

Plans for a One Way System in Oakham...



best stuff and it will be hard to whittle it down.” “I am enjoying the process though of deciding on the footage and it is interesting looking back at stuff which OAKHAM Rutland County Council recently passed the plans to the general public to decide which plans for the town centre would be more appealing. In the public consultation, 53% backed the idea of a one way system in the centre of Oakham. The plan is for traffic to run west to east along the High Street. The one way system means there would be plenty of space for echelon parking, loading bays for businesses and wider pavements. It is hoped that the changes will mean the town caters for the changing needs of shoppers

took place a few years ago.” “We haven’t decided on a name for the film yet but I hope it will be empowering and inspiring for people to watch.” n and will encourage trade and people into the town. A final consultation will be taking place on the detailed plans before a decision is taken on the subject by the council in early 2018. This is when funding will be sought too. “It’s an opportunity to create a space where more people want go, shop and relax, giving Oakham the town centre it deserves,” says leader of the council Tony Mathis. “If we do nothing to improve Oakham Town Centre this would likely unfortunately lead to further decline.” n Final decision made in early 2018.


CORBY GLEN Large crowds enjoyed the 779th annual sheep fair an auction recently in nearby Corby Glen. The event raises funds for the Lincolnshire and Nottinghamshire Air Ambulance. This year the event handed over a cheque for £2,000 to the charity over the weekend which had been raised from previous shows.

“It was really successful,” says Keith Raby, chairman of the show. “We had a lot more people turning up than last year. The whole weekend was really successful and really busy.” “We were really pleased with the turnout. We’re really pleased that lots of people took an interest in the show and I think people enjoy a traditional event.” n


Rutland Olympians Receive Medals at Games...

SHEFFIELD The East Midlands team for the Special Olympics in Sheffield included six team members from the Rutland Conquerors Inclusive Basketball Team. There were four days of competing for players with intellectual disabilities. The members from Rutland’s team were in three teams from the East Midlands. The A-team won bronze, the B-team took a fifth place ribbon and the C-team brought home a fourth place ribbon. Two team members, Sophie and Abbie won a gold medal for the three versus three girls competition. We are very proud that six members of the club were selected for the East Midlands team,” says founder of Rutland Conquerors Debbie Sowter.

CALDECOTT Local farmer from Caldecott and former high sheriff of Rutland Andrew Brown is taking on the Stand Up Challenge. He will appear in front of 350 people at Y Theatre in Leicester and will be given five minutes to impress audiences and win a trophy. The event is run by the Big Difference Company as part of a fundraising drive. “I have always been in awe of comedians and how they ply their trade,” says Andrew. “This is an opportunity to try it and so I thought I would have a go, try making a few people laugh and raise money too!” n

£3,000 in 585ft

Baa-rilliant Show

A VERY BRAVE FAMILY from Rutland has raised more than £3,000 by abseiling 585ft down the ArcelorMittal Orbit in London for charity. Lorna, 65, and her husband Allan, 68, alongside their two daughters Hanna and Lucy, 39 and 38, abseiled for the Make a Wish Foundation. You can still donate at

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73 YEAR OLD PENS FIRST BOOK Martin Lucas, local author, has just written his first book aged 73. The Dog Made to Talk is the title following his education, study and training in dog training and behaviour. It’s currently featured on Amazon as an e-book. n PETERBOROUGH

ANNA’S HOPE FUN RUN IS GREAT SUCCESS Last month, locals ran through the streets of Peterborough to raise money for local charity Anna’s Hope. Every penny raised from will go towards helping children and young people with brain tumours and their families. n RUTLAND

LIBRARIES LAUNCH BOOKS Library users across Rutland can now borrow ‘Reading Well’ books that cover conditions like diabetes, heart disease and stroke.


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RUTLAND Rutland can once again take pride in the impressive amount of money it raises each year for the charity. This year, it has raised £17,757.60 in donations for the National Gardens Scheme’s caring charities. In 2017 the National Gardens Scheme raised an incredible £3,000,000 for its chosen charities. If you’ve not heard of the organisation, locals open their garden to visitors for an afternoon to enjoy cake and talk about gardeing and all they need to bring is a few pounds. Our county and local community has really backed the cause. “Thank you to all our garden owners, garden visitors, tea and cake providers for this magnificent effort,” says Jane Alexander-Orr, one of Rutland’s County Organisers. “In addition, many hundreds of pounds were raised for our



Julie Cooper and her sister-in-law Belinda Hollingworth were joined in the challenge by Julie’s granddaughter Ellie Scott to take part in a triple head shave. Ellie is from Ryhall Academy, Belinda lives in Bourne and Julie is from Oakham. The money will support the British Heart Foundation and Cancer Research.


local churches and local charities through tea sales and raffles.” “Next year’s dates will be available soon in Rutland Pride and we look forward to

welcoming everyone again for good gardening and good cakes! Thank you for your valued support.” The charities that benefit from all the hard work people have

Oakham Music Maestro broadcast on Radio 3... AN OAKHAM STUDENT HAS HIS MUSIC BROADCASTED

put into the NGS this year includes the Macmillan Cancer Support, Marie Curie, Hospice UK and Carers Trust. n Visit for more information and to open your garden. OAKHAM A music scholar from Oakham School has had the honour of hearing his second piece of music broadcast on BBC Radio 3. Morgan won the BBC Proms Inspire Competition for young composers last year with his piece entitled Two Boys, a setting of a Walt Whitman poem. Part of his prize, alongside the accolade of having his winning composition performed and recorded at a special Proms Extra event and then featured on BBC Radio 3, was a much-coveted BBC commission. Morgan continues to compose prodigiously, and is writing music for his Diploma course. n

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Stamford Georgian Festival

The Georgian Ball & The Stamford Bull Run Stamford’s Georgian Festival is a highlight of the town’s calendar, which sees the whole community coming together and celebrating Stamford’s heritage. This year marked the 50th anniversary of Stamford being awarded the UK’s first conservation town, so spirits were high and the plans for the festival were the best yet.

To kick off celebrations, tickets sold out for the Georgian costume ball as ladies and gentlemen from the Georgian era danced to live music after a two course meal.

Out on the streets of Stamford, you could see the Stamford Bull Run. Costumed performers and actors joined the crowds gathering on Stamford’s streets to see the ‘Bull Run’

re-enactment and the incredible light show on All Saint’s Church. Fire-breathers, dancers, stilt walkers and a full regiment helped to bring the Georgian era to life over the weekend. There were many more events throughout the weekend to celebrate the heritage and importance of Stamford’s history. n

Feature your event in our magazine. 10

Call 01529 469977 and speak to our Events Desk...

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Feature your event in our magazine. Call 01529 469977 and speak to our Events Desk...


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An exceptional contemporary residence offering superb reception space, extensive accommodation and a stunning interior. Built with a mixture of local stone and brick giving the exterior a timeless architectural appeal. The current owner has meticulously refined the interior to the highest standard. Osprey House is a five bedroom family home. The private garden is mainly laid to lawn with patio seating areas. Generous parking and a double garage. EPC Rating: C.

tel: +44(0)1780 750200 email:

tel: +44( 0)1572 335145 email:

Osprey HOuse empingHam, rutland £1,200,000

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CHaFF HOuses rippingale, BOurne £735,000

A unique opportunity to purchase a spacious family home that has been finished to a high standard with a large garden and a fantastic Equestrian Facilities. A large gated graveled driveway provides ample parking to the front of the property with a detached double garage. The property benefits from a flexible living accommodation, with the addition of a spacious self-contained one bedroom annex. The Garden overlooks the Paddocks and American Barn. EPC Rating: C.



lOng Barn WelBy, grantHam £735,000

225 offices across great Britain plus 75 offices globally

A stunning example of a contemporary barn conversion that still retains many of its original features and appeal. The present owners have sympathetically restored this former barn into a truly stylish family home. The heart of the home is the Kitchen living area. Outside Long Barn benefits from a private position with stunning landscaped gardens. EPC Rating: C.

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S A L E S • L E T T I N G S • S U R V E Y S • M O R T G A G E S


GUIDE PRICE £695,000

A characterful five bedroom barn conversion offering spacious and flexible accommodation located in the sought after village of Barrowden with wonderful village views.


GUIDE PRICE £375,000

A charming Grade II listed three bed cottage sitting in the heart of this popular Rutland village in a quiet and private position.



A charming six bedroomed double fronted town house offering characterful and flexible accommodation over three floors & nestled right in the heart of Uppingham. NO ONWARD CHAIN.


GUIDE PRICE £350,000

A charming four bedroomed character cottage beautifully decorated throughout with a pretty cottage garden located in a peaceful part of this well thought of Rutland village.

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Firs Farm, Illston on the Hill

A stunning conversion of a Victorian farmhouse creating a spectacular 5 bedroom family home with panoramic views, equestrian facilities and 10 acres in one of Leicestershire’s most sought-after villages.

Edward Brassey 01858 433 123

Guide Price £1,550,000



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Guide Pride £1,700,000

A very fine, substantial Grade II Listed Georgian Country House with 2.2. A gardens and grounds and detached 3-bedroom Bungalow set on the edge of the village. Elegantly proportioned accommodation has recently undergone an extensive refurbishment programme but retains a wealth of original features. 4 Reception Rooms, Kitchen, Cloakroom, Utility, Cellars, 7 Bedrooms, 4 Bathrooms, Playroom, Store Room. Outside: Coach House with Stables, Tack Room, Garaging, Summer House, heated Swimming Pool. EPC Exempt.



Stunning individually created home beautifully appointed with bespoke fittings and providing spacious accommodation in a very private sought-after village location. The accommodation in brief: GROUND FLOOR: Entrance Vestibule, Reception Hall, Cloakroom, Lounge, Living/Dining Kitchen, Utility; FIRST FLOOR: 4 dbl Bedrooms, 2 with en-suites, Family Bathroom. OUTSIDE: dbl Garage, ample parking, enclosed Play/Pet Area, private south-facing Garden. Energy Rating: C.




Guide Price £995,000

A fine 17th Century Grade II Listed property which has been extensively refurbished and updated to present a beautifully finished country residence, offering substantial accommodation with 5 Reception Rooms, 5 Double Bedrooms (2 of them en-suite), further ancillary accommodation, great potential to convert second floor, Garaging and Gardens. EPC Exempt.



A four bedroom detached family home set on the edge of the village of Whissendine, in a private prime location with gardens and two adjoining grass paddocks extending in total to approx. 1.45 A. The property offers flexibly accommodation and provides great potential for extension and improvement. 3 Receptions Rooms, Kitchen/Diner, Utility Room, 4 Bedrooms, 2 Bathrooms; Garage, Car Port, ample parking, established Gardens and Grounds, Paddocks. Energy Rating: TBC.



Elegant period five bedroom townhouse with double bay frontage appointed to a high standard throughout and situated within walking distance of the centre of the town centre. The property offers spacious and beautifully presented character accommodation with 3 Reception Rooms, Kitchen/Diner, Utility, Cloakroom, 5 double Bedrooms and 2 Bathrooms. Garage, enclosed Garden. Energy Rating: E.



Detached house set on a large plot on the outskirts of a desirable village enjoying spectacular open countryside views. The property would benefit from a programme of modernisation and refurbishment but has the potential to provide an imposing family residence in a stunning location. 2 Reception Rooms, Conservatory, Kitchen, Utility, Clkrm, 3 dbl Bedrooms, Bathroom; single Garage, ample parking, beautiful Gardens. Energy Rating: D.

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Pilton, Oakham LE15

OIEO £850,000

Dunsby, Bourne PE10

Guide Price £795,000

A unique stone property positioned in this idyllic setting overlooking the Chater Valley. This delightful village home offers excellent accommodation arranged over two floors and uninterrupted views over the rolling Rutland countryside. 3 / 4 Reception Rooms, 4 Bedrooms and Private Gardens. EPC: E.

The Grange is an attractive Grade II Listed Georgian double fronted property circa 1800 set in the idyllic conservation village of Dunsby. 4 Reception Rooms, 6 Bedrooms, Pool and Pool House, sitting in a 1.4 acre plot, 2 Stables and Outbuildings plus Double Garage. EPC: Exempt.

Gretton, Northamptonshire NN17

Guide Price £780,000

Cawthorpe, Bourne PE10

Guide Price £880,000

An exceptional village home, built of stone under a Welsh slate roof. Whilst the property is located centrally within the village, it enjoys a great deal of privacy and the most splendid views over the Welland Valley. 6 Bedrooms, 4 Reception Rooms and Private South Facing Gardens. EPC: C.

A fine village home occupying a large plot extending to some three quarters of an acre. The Dovecote has been skilfully renovated & greatly extended into the handsome residence it is today. 4/5 Reception Rooms, 4/5 Bedrooms, Potential for Self-Contained Annexe, Stunning Open Plan Kitchen with Aga. EPC: D.

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Caythorpe, Grantham A truly one-of-a-kind, architect and owner designed dwelling situated in the heart of a highly desirable Cliff Village with immaculate and well thought-out living accommodation and beautiful landscaped gardens. Accommodation briefly includes three reception rooms, three bedrooms, four bathrooms, open plan kitchen and outbuildings. This unique property is full of state-of-the-art technologies including an air source heat recovery system, centralised vacuum system and underfloor heating throughout. EPC: B. Guide Price: £675,000


Eton House, Grantham Possibly one of the town’s finest townhouses to be offered for sale, this stunning end of terrace townhouse has been refurbished with keen attention to detail, combining character features and modern practical spaces. The three storey property briefly comprises of four double bedrooms, two bathrooms and downstairs cloakroom, a paved courtyard and double garage, with bespoke double glazed hardwood sash style windows and original period features throughout. EPC: F. Guide Price: £295,000

Lincoln – 01522 716204 Grantham – 01476 515329 London – 020 7839 0888 Ralph WyrleyBirch

James Ward

Bob Bickersteth

Milly English

Amy Merrigan

Paul Baxter

Ann Gwyther

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PAINT Panoramas in Words: Tilly Wilkinson. Illustrations: Karen Neale.


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Photography is my passion, but there is a certain snobbery to it. The brand of camera you use, the generation, the lens, the way you use the camera; it all matters in photography. That’s something that an artist doesn’t have to face, using any material they wish to, irrespective of price tags.

This is why Karen Neale’s work is so exciting. Using just a small box of just 14 watercolours, one or two paintbrushes and a biro pen, she creates stunning works of art in her small

sketchbook that could be displayed alongside elaborately detailed canvases in a gallery.

The fact Karen only has to use a very limited number of resources to create the beautiful landscapes in just a day shows off her sheer talent and passion further.

“I trained and then worked as an architect for several years,” says Karen. “I enjoy recording the world around me, and just sitting in one place for a few hours watching the world go by. It’s so therapeutic and enjoyable.”

Karen started her artistic career when she was awarded a Churchill Fellowship which enabled her to undertake a journey of a lifetime travelling for five months around the Mediterranean and the Middle East.

She documented everywhere she went, painting landscapes and writing a short diary entry around the edges of her work. This journey kickstarted her career as an artist. She was soon commissioned to draw Buckingham Palace for the Queen. 21

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“The Churchill Fellowship was an enormous help. It encouraged me to continue with art, my true passion, and put architecture to one side.”

I use a simple biro and a small watercolour box so I never have to worry about losing any materials on my travels; you can get the materials I use in most corners of the world.” “I’m a strong believer in the saying that everyone can draw and that you can use very simple materials to do so. That’s why I’ve started leading sketching workshops at Stamford Arts Centre.” “Alongside the workshops, I still go out on travels and document my journeys around London, Stamford and the whole World, and I’m also busy with commission work at the moment.”


Early Career: Trained as and worked in an architect practice before her art career. Award: Churchill Fellowship from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust.

Now: Karen does commissions, sells paintings, prints and books featuring Stamford, London and beyond from her sketchbook, and provides sketching workshops to budding local artists.

“I love commissions; they’re very random! I’ve worked with businesses, illustrating their buildings and facilities, families that would like their house illustrated and even big bosses in London who want the view from their office window reproduced in paint.”

“There isn’t a specific part of what I do that I enjoy most. I’ve loved every part of it, and it’s exciting to see that I can pass on my skills and show to other people that everyone can draw with anything they have to hand.” n Karen’s work can be viewed on her website and if you would like a commissioned work, call her on 07710 406967. Her books are also available to purchase online, making a great stocking filler for someone interested in art, cityscapes and landscapes. Left: Karen herself and a view from the Royal Observatory in Greenwich.


Above: A view from Millbank Tower in London and a view of Stamford from Burghley.

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Providing Rutland, Stamford and the surrounding areas with a quality bathroom service...

We only supply top brand components and install to impeccable standards.

High quality family bathrooms, en suites, wet rooms and shower rooms, and mobility bathing solutions, all at affordable prices.

DH Bathrooms’ small team of hand picked, master craftsmen will amaze you with their ability and attention to detail...

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• Friendly & relaxed classes • Tutor with 20 years experience • No confusing technical jargon • Mix of theory & practical


Beginners Photography One-Day Masterclass

• ISO settings • aperture settings • shutter speeds • white balance • camera modes • depth of field • on- board flash • light readings • file formats


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Night Photography Workshop

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A fun hands-on evening learning how to capture stunning images in low light conditions. Long exposures, car trails, shooting fireballs, painting with light, using fill-in flash and much more. N.B you will require a tripod for this workshop


Private Tuition

The absolute best way to learn. A day tailored specifically to your needs enabling you to massively enhance your photography skills and confidence in a very short space of time

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Full Day: £250


Please visit or email to book


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The Rutland


Celebrate the season and give your loved one a gift they’ll treasure courtesy of the county’s best independent retailers. This month we’ve asked them to suggest thoughtful gifts for ladies, gents and younger members of the family too... Compiled by: Tilly Wilkinson.

RUBIROX ChloBo Inner Spirit Double Devotion Bracelet Set of 2 £120, 01780 755996,

STAMFORD NOTEBOOK CO. Stylish notebooks, beautifully bound in leather from £14.95. 01780 762550,

SARAH HARDING New Silver Toast Mr & Mrs boxed set of two 1/2 pint mugs £54.95.

6 Market Place, Uppingham LE15 9QH.

RUBIROX An eye-catching timepiece, Swarovski Crystalline Watch £259, 01780 755996,

GATES GARDEN CENTRE Rowallan Safari holdall, 55cm x 40cm x 30cm £179.99. 01664 454309,

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CAVELLS Barbour women’s Abbey quilted jacket taupe, sizes 8-16, £169. 01572 770600,

THE RUG STUDIO Cushion, floor cushions stocked too, various designs, great for pets or teenagers. 2 High St., East, Uppingham, 01572 829927.

KATIE ALICE Festival Folk glass tumblers in pink, navy and yellow, £6.99 each.,

OAKHAM WINES Our wine writer Harish suggests this golfer’s whisky, £64.95, as a present for dad! 01572 757124,

ELYSIA Enjoy the luxury of Environ with this Beautiful Christmas set; £call for price. 07879 620196,



CAVELLS Mill Street’s Cavells

provides gents with a high quality loafer by Fairfax & Favor. 100% suede, hand-stitched, £145, available in chocolate or whisky. Mill Street, Oakham LE15 6EA, call 01572 770 600 or see



CHAMELEON Chameleon in Stamford specialises in lingerie and beach wear, but they also have a gifts section featuring this high gloss Urban Country Florence yellow handbag, £45. Call 01780 755405 or visit


ROBINSON’S Specialists in leather

goods and country clothing for gents and ladies, Robinson’s of Stamford offers among other items this beautiful Alan Paine Felt Hat, £44.95. Call 01780 755378 or see

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COUNTRY TRADITIONALS Country Traditionals of Stamford is where you will find these wonderful Polish pottery Christmas decorations to make your home even more festive. The pottery Christmas trees in two sizes - £19.95/£27.95 - hold a tea light. The mini mugs are available filled with the candles in scents - Orange & Cinnamon and Bay & Rosemary £12.95 each. £6.95 as a expresso mug. Large angel £34.95 small tree decoration angels £11.95. Visit the shop which is filled with a wonderful range of Polish Stoneware n Visit in store at 10a Maiden Lane, Stamford PE9 2AZ or call on 01780 755409.


Leather GOODS CHAMELEON The Time to Sleep gift set with large deep relax bath & shower oil, £68, 01780 755405,

Stamford’s Revealed provide luxury leather goods like these full grain cow’s leather belts made from a single piece of leather.

Black Belt £16.50. OLDRIDS Earth Squared Tweed saddle bag from Oldrids & Downtown, £34. 01205 361251,


FORDS OF OAKHAM Radley Folk Dog Medium Crossbody bag by Fords of Oakham, £59. 01572 722654,

WOOLROOM Arncliffe wool throw in aqua from Woolroom, £59.99. 01780 767927,

Yellow Belt £11.50. THE GRANGE SPA With its swimming pool, six heat experiences, and its health and fitness suite, The Grange Spa in Pointon provides total relaxation with a range of treatments powered by brands like Thalgo and Germaine de Capuccini. Gift vouchers are available from the spa. If a spa break is a little out of your price range, the spa also has some fantastic gift sets for loved ones this Christmas. They also have gift sets for men to enjoy too. Pictured here is the Thalgo anti-ageing gift set for just £62.

n Visit or call 01778 440511. The Grange Spa is on Millthorpe Road, Sleaford NG34 0NF.

Navy Belt £14.99. n Call 07455 892092 or visit Corn Exchange Shopping Arcade, or see


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FLAWLESS BODY Gift vouchers are available at Flawless Body on Stamford’s Scotgate. Treatments include skin tightening and the latest dermal filler injections. Call 01780 660302 or see


LEAN PANTRY CO. Enjoy healthy living at the Lean Pantry Co. It has a range of hampers available at price points to suit to all budgets. Call 01572 774363 or visit

COUNTRY TRADITIONALS Jugs £7.95/£25, mugs £9.95/£11.95, other items £4.95 - £9.95. 01780 422950,

THE RUG STUDIO Cushion, floor cushions stocked too, various designs, great for pets or teenagers. 2 High St., East, Uppingham, 01572 829927.

GRANGE SPA Thalgo Christmas Cracker from The Grange Spa, four miniature products, £19.50. 01778 440511,

LAXMI CUSHIONS Scented pillow, Lavender, Chamomile and Frankincense for relaxation, £30. 07850 731220,

ROBINSON’S OF STAMFORD Luxury leather London Brogues Gatsby, £79.95. 01780 755378,

CURIOUS DESIGNS Julia Davey penguin mugs from Curious Designs, £12 each, Hope’s Yard, Uppingham, 07772 852374.

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To the Manner Born Sitting prominently at the highest point in the Vale of Belvoir is Belvoir Castle. It’s noticeable for miles around with its orange brick façade and multitude of turrets. The Castle is in pristine condition and is still privately owned by the Manners family. It remains the seat of the Duke of Rutland, most of whom are buried in a mausoleum within the grounds here. It’s rare for Castles of this age to remain in such good condition and still remain in the family. So what are the secrets behind Belvoir Castle’s walls? Belvoir Castle is one of the country’s greatest castles, remaining in the Manners family for over 500 years. It’s just north of our county within its 15,000 acre estate.

Undeniably a beautiful and well-preserved castle, it makes one wonder how Belvoir - dating back to the 13th century - has remained in such remarkable condition without any National Heritage or Trust funding. The secret to the Castle’s everlasting youth is the fact that the one you see today isn’t the first. It’s not the second or the third but the fourth Belvoir Castle to sit at the top of the Vale of Belvoir.

First Castle The very first castle here was a Norman castle. It stood on high ground, built on the land of Robert de Todeni of the Doomsday Book, and inherited from him by William d’Aubigny. It eventually passed to William’s granddaughter Isabel, who married Robert de Ros circa 1234. Belvoir was a royal manor until it was granted to Robert de Ros in 1257. He was given a licence to crenellate - build walls around the castle - in 1267. When this family died out in 1508, the castle passed to George Manners, who inherited the castle and barony through his mother. His son was created Earl of Rutland in 1525.

Main: The castle sits in 15,000 acres. To put that into perspective, our small county is around 94,000 acres. The Belvoir Castle estate is around a sixth of Rutland’s land. Above: The Dukes of Rutlands’ Coat of Arms.

Second Castle The Norman castle had been in ruins since 1464 and John Manners, 9th Earl of Rutland started construction of a new castle in the 17th century. Much of the stone for this building came from Croxton Abbey and Belvoir Priory following their dissolution.

In the early 17th century, castle servants Joan, Margaret and Phillipa Flower were accused of murdering the 6th Earl’s two young sons by witchcraft. Joan died while in prison and 35

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Margaret and Phillipa were to be hanged. Read more about the tale of the Witches of Belvoir to the right of this page. During the English Civil War, Belvoir Castle was one of the more notable strongholds of the king’s supporters and King Charles spent a night here on his way into Lincolnshire. Third Castle In 1649 the castle was completely destroyed by Parliamentarians during the Civil War. A new building was started in 1654 and this was designed as a large family home.

It was designed by the architect John Webb and work was completed by 1668 at a total cost of £11,730 which is about the equivalent of £1,820,000 today. John Manners, the 9th Earl of Rutland was created Duke of Rutland in 1703. Belvoir Castle has been the home of the Manners family for over 500 years and seat of the Dukes of Rutland for over three centuries.

Fourth Castle The Castle was rebuilt in the romantic Gothic Revival style to designs by James Wyatt between 1799 and 1816, but in 1816 it was almost destroyed by a fire. The loss was estimated at £120,000, the equivalent to £8,280,000, including pictures by Titian, Rubens, Van Dyck and Reynolds.

It was rebuilt again to the same designs by the wife of the 5th Duke at a cost of £82,000 - £6,870,000 today - and was largely completed by 1832.

THE INVENTOR of AFTERNOON TEA Whilst visiting Belvoir in the 1840s, Anna Russell, Duchess of Bedford found that dinner was between 7pm and 8.30pm. An extra meal called luncheon had been created to fill the midday gap, but as this new meal was very light, the long afternoon left people feeling hungry. She found a light meal of tea and cakes or sandwiches was the perfect balance. The Duchess found taking an afternoon snack to be such a superb refreshment that she soon invited her friends to join her. Afternoon tea became an established and convivial repast in many middle and upper class households.


The rebuild was designed to create the superficial resemblance to a medieval castle, central tower reminiscent of Windsor Castle. The Castle is open to the public and contains many works of art. The Queen’s Royal Lancers Regimental Museum of the 17th and 21st Lancers was established here in 1964, but was required to leave in 2007.

The Castle’s name means beautiful view. The name Belvoir is a Norman import from invaders, but the native population was unable to pronounce it, preferring to call it Beaver Castle, a usage which persists today. Several films have used it as a location, notably Little Lord Fauntleroy starring Sir Alec Guinness, The Da Vinci Code, Young Sherlock Holmes starring Nicholas Rowe and Alan Cox, and more recently The Young Victoria. The highlights of the tour are the lavish staterooms, the most famous being the Elizabeth Saloon, the Regents Gallery and the Roman inspired State Dining Room. n


Above: Belvoir Castle in the late 19th century and the 10th Duke of Rutland, Charles Manners.

Right: John Manners, the 3rd Duke of Rutland.

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The Witches of


Flowers were herbal healers but they had fallen on hard times. They accepted employment at Belvoir Castle. But the three were unpopular with the other staff, with suggestions of theft and misdemeanors. All three were dismissed, Joan the only one of the three receiving a small payment. After the sisters were dismissed, the Earl and Countess fell ill. Their son and heir Henry died in 1613. Their younger children Francis and daughter Katherine suffered similarly, and Francis later died in 1620. When the women were arrested, they admitted that they stole the glove of Henry, dipped it in boiling water, stroked it along their cat’s back, and pricked it. Combined with incantations, this supposedly caused Henry to become ill and die. An attempt to harm Lady Katherine, had failed when it was found that the cat had no power over her. They also cast spells to prevent the Earl and Countess having any more children. They admitted to experiencing visions of devils and that their familiar spirits visited them and sucked at their bodies. Joan died on her way to trial and the sisters were hanged for witchcraft. A historian has suggested the Flowers women were framed by George Villiers, Duke of Buckingham. Villiers had plans to marry Katherine and, with her brothers dead, inherit the title. After the execution of the Flowers, Villiers married Rutland’s sole heir Katherine.


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Local People:

The Chocolatier

We’re a county of quality over quantity. ‘Multum in Parvo,’ the county’s Latin slogan of ‘Much in Little’ has never be more true when looking at Rutland’s gastronomic accomplishments. With more than one Michelin-star restaurant, experts in every field of gastronomy and top chefs cooking in Rutland kitchens, it comes as no surprise that we feature Helen Buff in this edition, Rutland’s very own chocolatier... There’s a recurring theme with my features; they seem to revolve around food. However, I assure you this is entirely coincidental. It’s what Rutland seems to pride itself on, seemingly having an expert in every area of gastronomy.

This month I visited Market Overton’s Helen Buff. Helen designs and makes beautiful handmade chocolates, perfect stocking fillers for Christmas or larger gifts for friends and family. She’s been a chocolatier for four years now ever since her neighbour invited her round for a chocolate making afternoon.

“My neighbour is a pastry chef and works for a large firm that makes chocolate,” says Helen. “After looking after her house while she was away, she wanted to thank me, and so invited me round to make chocolate.” “I absolutely loved the craft and it soon became a hobby. After becoming increasingly

Words & Images: Tilly Wilkinson.

obsessed with making chocolate, I went on two or three starter courses, followed by a chocolate showpiece course and an Easter course.”

“I was only making chocolates for friends and family to start with, working full time as Head of Finance on the Senior Management team at HMP Ashwell. When the prison shut down, I was offered a job at a prison far from home or a redundancy package.”

“Rather than seeing this in a negative light, I decided it was the push I needed to turn

“I’ve been a chocolatier for four years now and absolutely love the craft. I’m very lucky to be able to do this full-time...”

my hobby into a full-time business. I started working part-time at the local shop and gradually built the business up.” “I exhibit at craft shows but most of my business comes directly. I can do bespoke pieces in various flavours of chocolate.”

“Easter and Christmas are my most popular times of year, as are other occasions, but it’s Christmas I have the most fun with, attending all of the local Christmas craft fairs.” Helen also creates wedding favours, Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and Halloween chocolates. She can fulfil most requests if you would like something bespoke too.

She uses a polycarbonate mould and sometimes silicone moulds for smaller items, to get a high shine on her chocolates.

“If a specific product needs a lot of detailed work, like my red Santa Claus for example, I paint the different sections in the mould 41

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Above: Helen’s chocolate baubles and chocolate Santa Claus. Right: Local chocolatier Helen Buff.

first and when this has dried and set, I then pour the chocolate over the top.”

She only uses high quality Belgium chocolate which is sourced sustainably, and she’s just started to introduce different flavours like strawberry, lime and orange to her range of chocolates. “The only big problem I’ve had to face so far is heat. I was attending a recent craft fair, and because of the warm weather, the back of my penguin melted! It’s not an easy fix either! I love working on big projects though and attending craft fairs. As the business grows, I may have to invest in air conditioning!”

Helen is looking into expanding, but right now, she’s happy working from her room that her family call ‘The Chocolate Room.’

“I fear that growing and expanding would compromise the ability to offer a completely bespoke and personal service. I’ll stick to The Chocolate Room for the time being!”

n For more information on what Helen offers and to buy your very own personal chocolates in time for Christmas, please email her at or visit her Facebook page

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What’s On... Nutcracker Ballet...




The evening will begin with a prosecco reception under the Cathedral Tower, followed by a delicious three-course dinner. Musicians from the Cathedral Choir will provide an interlude of festive music. Later, as coffee, tea and petits fours are served, see after dinner speaker, actor and raconteur, Brian Blessed.



THE NUTCRACKER SCREENING The Royal Ballet brings the most enduring and enchanting versions of The Nutcracker to screens across the country including Peterborough’s Key Theatre. With its festive period setting, dancing snowflakes and enchanting stage magic, Lev Ivanov’s 1892 ballet has become the perfect Christmas entertainment, with Tchaikovsky’s sumptuous, sugar-spun music the most recognisable of all ballet scores.

n Call 01733 207239 or visit £100/pp. OAKHAM



Come and get into the Festive Spirit this Christmas with the Oakham late night shopping event. There is so much to see and do. The Victoria Hall and the High Street will be packed with stalls offering local produce and beautiful gift ideas for Christmas.

n Call 01733 207239 or see for more information.

Christmas Market at Peterborough Cathedral


n Call 07974 810771 or see for more information.


The event promises to be a wonderful way to begin preparations for Christmas, with a wide variety of gifts on sale as well as refreshments and carol singers. Christmas markets have become a popular annual event at several cathedrals, most notably at Ely and Winchester, and it is hoped that such an event might become an annual feature at Peterborough Cathedral too. You can also see local craftspeople here.

Due to overwhelming demand, the boys are back to entertain you this Christmas in the Orangery at Kilworth House. Including a delicious festive three course dinner, you will need to book early to avoid disappointment. Enjoy an evening of superb entertainment set in beautiful surroundings. Evenings start with a welcome drink in the hotel lounges prior to being seated for a delicious three course dinner.



n Free entry, call 01733 355306 or visit for more information on events in and around the Cathedral.





n Call 01858 881939 or visit

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Send your press releases and events to: Co-Editor via




Returning to Key Theatre in Peterborough with an all singing, all dancing month of music, madness is the story of Sleeping Beauty; the enchanting tale of true love, princesses and princes.

n Call 01733 207239 or see DE MONTFORT HALL




Following the success of Fantastic Mr Fox, The Twits and The Witches, Curve’s magnificent new co-production with Rose Theatre Kingston promises to be yet another hugely imaginative and entertaining stage adaptation,

bursting with growing grannies, feathery farm animals and bags of frothbuggling family fun. This classic tale from Roald Dahl is brought to life at the theatre throughout the Christmas period as an alternative to pantomime. n Call 01162 423560 or visit for more information about the event and other events at the Curve Theatre in Leicester.

Christmas with Katherine Jenkins at De Montfort Hall




Dick from TV duo Dick and Dom, ITV’s Heartbeat’s David Lonsdale and singer Sam Bailey will be in De Montfort Hall’s Christmas pantomime show Beauty & the Beast.

n Please call 01162 333111 or visit




Start your Christmas celebration in style with singing sensation Katherine Jenkins, as she performs a magnificent concert of seasonal music and songs at De Montfort Hall in Leicester. Katherine Jenkins OBE is a Welsh lyric mezzo-soprano, singer and songwriter. She is a popular classical-crossover singer who performs across a spectrum of operatic arias, popular songs, musical theatre and hymns.



SCROOGE THEATRE DAY AND TOUR A chance to meet the cast and creatives of Scrooge over a cup of tea, and participate in a backstage tour and onstage workshop before seeing the show. n Call 01162 423560 or visit PETERBOROUGH



The Locrian Ensemble present, in lavish period costume, and in front of an evocative candlelit setting, Carols by Candlelight at Key Theatre. The charismatic performers perform favourites including carols, string medleys of familiar christmas tunes, and seasonal surprises. n Tickets are £20.50. Call 01733 207239 or see

Expect to hear Christmas classics including some of Katherine’s own work. “I love being on tour, it’s the best part of my job without a shadow of doubt,” says Katherine about the show. “I love Christmas too, so for me, this show is the perfect mix. People really enjoy classics like ‘O Come All Ye Faithful’ and ‘Hark the Herald Angels Sing.’” The show is conducted by Anthony Inglis and Mark Vincent will be the special guest.

n Please call 01162 333111 or visit


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Hope & Joy

Christmas lunch is the most important element of the festive season; it’s the part everyone looks forward to the most and usually requires a great amount of effort and time spent in the kitchen. This month Sean Hope, head chef and owner of the Olive Branch in Clipsham, welcomes us into his kitchen to show us how to do Christmas lunch properly and without the stress... Words & Images: Tilly Wilkinson.

Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, full of love, joy and happiness. Without the intention of sounding like Scrooge, it can also be a time for stress, doubt and worry, especially when you’re cooking Christmas lunch for the family.

To take the stress away from Christmas cooking this year, Sean Hope agreed to show us how it’s done. Sean, head chef and owner of award-winning pub The Olive Branch in Clipsham, made us a starter, main and dessert that everyone will love, especially you. Sean is originally from Portsmouth, growing up with brothers Gareth and Craig. Their parents moved from Portsmouth to Bristol to Wales when they were young and eventually settled in Rutland when Sean was 12.

“My very first job involved washing up at the Olive Branch ironically,” says Sean. “I loved working in the kitchen and decided to enrole in a two year City and Guilds general catering course at Stamford College.” “I was awarded student of the year in my final year at College.”

“I felt I deserved a little R&R, so a long trip to Australia followed! It was spent surfing, touring and just enjoying the sun.”

When Sean returned, he was working with Brian Baker again, this time at the Criterion in London for just over a year. He decided city life wasn’t for him and wanted to be closer to his wife Victoria, so Sean joined Aaron Patterson at Hambleton Hall for the next seven years. Sean and his wife Victoria were childhood sweethearts, meeting at school. Victoria lived at the Jackson Stops while Sean was washing up at the Olive Branch.

“Hambleton hired me as a full time apprentice under the stewardship of Brian Baker, now head chef and owner of the Marquess of Exeter in Lyddington.”

“After this, I started working at another Relais et Chateaux and Michelin-star hotel; Longueville Manor in Jersey. This was followed by three years in a similar hotel in Woodstock in Oxfordshire.”

“I had crossed lines with Ben my business partner throughout my career, and we were always on the same wavelength. We had a craving to open a restaurant that offered relaxed, informal dining using fresh, seasonal and local produce. No one was doing it, the word gastropub hadn’t been invented in 1999.” “The Olive Branch in Clipsham had been closed for the past three years too. I knew it was a great pub and it was a real shame to see it in such disrepair. Villagers were trying hard to hold onto their village pub, even raising funds and proposing that each household took turns hosting a night at the pub each week.” 49

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“I love cooking at home as much as I enjoy cooking at work. In some ways, I enjoy it even more as I have the freedom to experiment with dishes. I’m so passionate about what I do...”

raising funds and proposing that each household took turns hosting a night at the pub each week.”

“We were living close by, the pub was the perfect location, it was just the right setting for what we wanted to create, and there was so much demand for it from the locals; it just felt right.”

“Friends, family and the villagers all supported us financially, Ben was to be front of house, I would work in the kitchen and Marcus, our third business partner at the time, would be the wine connoisseur.” “Within five weeks, we had transformed, stripped and painted the pub which had been neglected for three years and brought it back to life. The menus were all handwritten, the food was honest seasonal local pub grub and our popularity soon began to snowball.”

“I started getting calls a couple of years later from professional chefs I knew saying well done and congratulating me. We’d won a Michelin star and I didn’t have a clue what they were talking about. We were all so wrapped up in the food, the customers and running the business. We never expected a Michelin star!”

“The award was a blessing and a curse; the phones didn’t stop ringing and people were travelling from far and wide, but we weren’t prepared for an influx in popularity. Also, some of the customers that had travelled from afar didn’t quite get it; they thought we weren’t worthy of a star because we didn’t have linen table cloths, but we’re not about formal dining. We weren’t just a local’s local anymore either.”

Despite the disadvantages, the star meant the pub restaurant had been put on the map and the Olive Branch started to grow.

“We increased the number of staff and started looking into what else we could be doing. We soon opened Beech House so we could offer guest accommodation, we have the paddock kitchen 50

garden so our ingredients can’t get any more local, and we offer cookery courses from butchery to baking.”

The Olive Branch is looking to increase its facilities with an extension, upgrading the kitchen and creating a dining table within the kitchen. The chefs will serve and be able to chat to diners about the food.

“I love cooking at home as much as I enjoy cooking at work. I’m so passionate about my job and about supporting local people and producers. Now, with the paddock too, I have a connection with seeing the food I cook grow which I think is fantastic. We’re looking at getting pigs next year and we’ve just discovered truffles in humble Clipsham which is great.” Last year, Sean was fortunate to be able to spend Christmas Day at home with the family.

“Christmas is about coming together with the family, and working in the kitchen can really limit that. Prepare as much of your food the night before, follow my simple recipes and relax with the family for a hassle free and enjoyable merry Christmas!”n

Above: Some of the delicious trimmings you can enjoy with your Christmas lunch.

Right: Sean and the Hope family far right, and our starter of cold meats and chutneys, all locally sourced. Sean used Rutland Charcuterie for the amazing cured meats and Marrfish for the Wye smoked salmon.

Turn the page for Sean’s hassle-free and delicious Christmas lunch recipe.

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Christmas Turkey with all the trimmings... For the Turkey: 7kg turkey, 300g butter, 1 lemon, 1 lime, 2 garlic cloves crushed, 1/2tsp cinnamon, 1/2tsp grated nutmeg, salt & pepper, bunch of fresh parsley chopped, bunch of hops

For the Potatoes: 8 medium Maris Piper potatoes, Rutland Rapeseed oil

For the Farmhouse Cabbage: 1 onion, peeled and sliced, 4 carrots peeled and shredded, 8 rashers smoked streaky bacon cut in lardons, 200g wild mushrooms, 2 garlic cloves finely chopped, 1 Savoy cabbage shredded and blanched

For the Piccolo Parsnips: 32 piccolo parsnips washed, 1 knob butter, 1tbsp Colsterworth honey, 1tbsp sherry vinegar, 1 sprig thyme

For the Pigs in Blankets Stuffing: 1kg of pork mince, 1 mandarin, 1 onion finely chopped, 2 garlic cloves crushed, 100g cooked chestnuts chopped, 1tbsp chopped parsley, 4 dried apricots, 4 dried pitted prunes, 8 rashers streaky smoked bacon, 1tsp grated nutmeg

Start with the turkey. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celsius and allow the turkey to stand at room temp for at least one hour before cooking.

Place a chopped onion, rosemary and some hops in the cavity of the turkey. Soften butter with the citrus juice & zest, crushed garlic, ground cinnamon, nutmeg, parsley, salt & pepper. Evenly spread the butter mix under the skin of the turkey and place into the oven to roast for 30 minutes. Take out of the oven and baste the turkey. Turn the oven down to 180 degrees celsius then return the turkey to roast. Cooking times can vary, but 35 minutes per kg is Sean’s rule of thumb. When cooked allow the turkey to rest for one and a half hours before carving. While your turkey is resting, turn the oven up to 200 degrees celsius again. Peel the potatoes and cut slits about 5mm apart down the potato. Cut down to two thirds of the potato. Rinse them under cold water to remove some of the starch. Place onto a baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with flaked sea salt. Bake in the oven until golden brown (approx 30 minutes). Now onto the cabbage. Heat a large frying pan and add a drizzle of Rutland Rapeseed oil. Fry the onions and garlic until golden brown, then remove and keep to one side. Reheat the pan with more rapeseed oil and fry the shredded carrots until golden brown and season, then remove from the pan and leave to one side. Reheat the pan again with rapeseed oil and fry the wild mushrooms until golden brown, season and place to one side. Finally fry the bacon lardons until golden brown in the same pan.

Serves eight. Turkey from Hambleton Fine Foods.

Mix all of the ingredients in a large bowl, adjust the seasoning if required and place into a large serving dish. Before serving, reheat the farmhouse cabbage in a preheated oven at 190 degrees covered with foil for 20 minutes. For parsnips, place them in a lined foiled tray, season, drizzle with vinegar and honey and add the sprig thyme. Cover with foil and roast in a pre-heated oven at 190 degrees for 15-20 minutes. Finally, Sean’s pigs in blankets/stuffing. Fry off the onion and garlic to golden brown, allow to cool, then mix with mandarin zest, pork mince, nutmeg, parsley and chestnuts. On foil and parchment paper, place the rashers of smoked bacon. Place half of the stuffing mix across the bacon, then lay apricots and prunes alternately down the middle. Place the rest of the pork stuffing on top then roll tightly in the foil. Tie at both ends with string, bake in a pre-heated oven at 190 degrees for 35 minutes. Remove from the wrapping and slice even portions. For the perfect turkey gravy, Sean suggests frying turkey giblets and onion (chopped) from the turkey cavity with sage and rosemary. Add a splash of sherry vinegar, tbsp of flour, tbsp of tomato paste, resting juices and 1l of chicken stock. Bring to the boil and season to taste. Strain and serve. n

Sean’s Top Tips: As a rule of thumb, when cooking any piece of meat - whether that’s roast turkey or sirloin steak - leave it to rest for half the time it has been cooking for; if you cook a turkey for three hours, rest it for one and a half. Another great tip is if you have a great ingredient, you don’t need to do much to it. Of course, always pour the resting juices from your meat into your gravy, and cook potatoes in either goose fat or beef dripping. Rutland Rapeseed Oil also works well. 53

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The Dessert



Serve your Christmas pudding soufflés with chocolate mousse and cranberry sorbet.

For the sorbet, mix 1l cranberry juice, the zest and juice of one lime and 500g icing sugar together. Place into either an ice cream churner or pre-chilled bowl from freezer and churn. When set to sorbet consistency, leave in the freezer until required. This can be prepared several days in advance.

For chocolate mousse, whisk 62g egg yolks with the 125g sugar to ribbon stage. Melt 125g plain chocolate over a bain marie. Fold the egg yolk and sugar mix through the chocolate. Whip 220ml whipping cream to a firm peak, then fold through the chocolate mix. Whisk 150g egg whites to stiff peaks, then fold through the chocolate mixture. Place into a container, cover and chill for 20 minutes before serving. “Merry Christmas from the Hopes and the Olive Branch team,” says Sean Hope. n For more information about Christmas at the Olive Branch, call 01780 410355 or visit


Christmas Pudding Soufflé Ingredients: 200 Christmas pudding available from the Olive Branch’s pub shop 4 egg yolks 30g sugar 360g egg whites 80g sugar NB: Will require 8 large ramekins (8cm diameter x 6 cm deep)

Serves eight.

This Christmas Pudding soufflé is the ideal option for a lighter dessert after a heavy Christmas lunch that’s still festive. In a processor add the Christmas pudding, egg yolk and sugar and blend to a smooth paste. Brush the soufflé ramekins with melted butter and chill for five minutes. Brush the ramekins with melted butter again then line with caster sugar well. Whisk up the egg whites until they start to peak. Gradually add the 80g caster sugar to stabilise the mix, then add a third of the egg white to the Christmas pudding mix and beat in well. Add the remainder of the egg white to the Christmas pudding mix and fold through gently leaving light as possible. Place the mixture into the soufflé ramekins to the top, then level off with a palette knife. Run the tip of a small knife round the rim of each soufflé, then place the soufflés into a pre heated oven at 200 degrees celsius and bake for seven to eight minutes. The soufflés are ready when they are at least a third risen from the top of the pot. A perfect soufflé should still be soft in the middle. Remove from the oven, dust with icing sugar and serve with chocolate mousse and cranberry sorbet.

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The Marquess of


As cosy as ever, and just as keen to impart quality. The Marquess of Exeter is the crowning achievement of chef Brian Baker’s incredible career. The Lyddington pub restaurant is ideal for a winter visit. Enjoy tasty food in a warming environment... Words & Images: Tilly Wilkinson.

meet the CHEF

In my opinion, there’s nothing more attractive in winter than a warm glowing fire at a great pub restaurant. If they’ve got superb menu options and a good wine list to match, it’s the perfect place to spend a snowy Sunday afternoon after walking the dogs.


A restaurant with top marques this winter is the Marquess of Exeter headed up by Brian Baker, an exceptional head chef. Brian’s experience in kitchen’s across the country is extensive, but what he’s managed to create at his pub restaurant in Lyddington is uncomparable.

There’s always a roaring fire at this time of year in the hearth of the restaurant’s huge inglenook fireplace, and bright red gerberas and poinsettias festively decorate the cosy country pub.


This year, not only can you enjoy the warmth of the fireplace, but you can enjoy a modern and comfortable environment. The Marquess of Exeter has recently undergone a makeover, taking an already superb country pub and turning it into a practical and beautiful space.

There is an exceptional standard of food the kitchen produces to match. Forget twee portions and residual hunger; The Marquess is unapologetically a pub.

Experience: Having worked at Hambleton Hall, then The Criterion and Kensington’s Abingdon, Brian returned to Rutland in 2003 to take over the Fox & Hounds, Knossington before taking on the Marquess eight years ago. Philosophy: Great food needs to be technically well executed, not over complicated.

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That means decent portions, and feel good food, ideal in this weather, when heavyweight dishes include some superb grill options or confit duck leg.

Local suppliers include butcher Owen Taylor, who supplies meat for the restaurant’s flagship grilled rib of beef, served with pommes frites and bèarnaise.

Other suppliers include Launde Farm who supply venison, and several local shoots who provide game from local guns. Bread is supplied by Hambleton Bakery, whilst vegetables are from local growers.

OPEN FOR FOOD Lunch 12pm-2.30pm Monday to Saturday. Dinner 6.30pm-9.30pm Monday to Saturday. Sunday 12pm-3pm, 6.30pm-9pm Sunday.


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Crispy thai pork salad, sweet chilli sauce

Saki marinated salmon with Asian salad, wasabi mayonnaise, pickled ginger Terrine of black pudding and local pork, piccalilli

Main Courses

Grilled Madagascan prawns with spinach, saffron and parmesan risotto 6oz fillet of bead ‘Steak Diane’ style, dauphinoise potatoes, green beans (£8 supplement)

As the Marquess has just had a makeover, more work still needs to be done. Brian and the brigade are going to be creating a private dining room facility upstairs with your very own waiter and service. This will hopefully be available to book by December. On our visit, we enjoyed a pan-fried steak of tuna with saffron & caper mash with wilted spinach, anchovies and garlic butter. We were also served butternut squash and gorgonzola bruschetta with a watercress salad.

The main courses were the most impressive. The fish dish was a roasted Atlantic cod with garlic potatoes, sprouting broccoli and chorizo. This was followed by a Moroccan spiced rump of lamb with vegetables and bulgur wheat, ginger yoghurt and mint.

If you’ve a sweet tooth, you’ll enjoy Brian’s chocolate and peanut butter fondant with caramelised bananas. All year, Brian can be seen performing cookery demonstrations not only at events like the

Rutland Show, but in villages around the county, and at the Marquess itself, where regular cooking demos are hosted in conjunction with two course lunches.

There are also a number of very popular regular fixtures at the Marquess which tempt in locals and those from further afield. Brian once told us that his philosophy is that the pub should always be at the centre of village life, a place where all are welcome.

His desire to provide quality food in a relaxed environment is a philosophy that has remained, which is very much to Brian’s credit.

That, and the high standard of food, renders the Marquess even more recommendable than ever before.

“What you can enjoy more than ever now at the Marquess thanks to our recent renovations is a warm and cosy environment and really delicious food, perfect for beating those winter blues,” says Brian Baker.

Crispy roasted chorizo chicken, rosti potato, grilled aubergine, red pepper and tomato salsa


Treacle tart, caramel ice cream

Christmas pudding parfait, seasonal poached fruits, vanilla ice cream

White chocolate and apricot tiramisu Roasted Colwick cheese, onion marmalade

Two courses/£21.95 Three courses/ £24.95 NB: Featured dishes are subject to change. n The Marquess of Exeter is based on Main St, Lyddington, Rutland LE15 9LT. Call 01572 822477 or see 61

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Un'autentica Esperienza


(An authentic Italian experience!)


Fresh authentic Italian & British Cuisine l Exciting wine & cocktail list l Private function room l Special group packages available l Open for lunch Christmas day and Boxing day l

Glaston Road, Morcott, LE15 9DL call 01572

748731 or see

Open Morning, Lunchtime & Evening. For breakfast, coffee, lunches and for Ă la carte dining


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On the Line...



Rushton Hall serves a true work of art; saffron cured mackerel with compressed cucumber, egg yolk jam and crispy onions. 01536 713001,

n The Olive Branch’s Sean Hope is featured in this edition for his incredible Christmas lunch.

If this is too hearty to think about right now, he also does a delicious salmon fish

dish too with asparagus and new potatoes. Visit the pub restaurant’s website for more information and read about the Olive Branch’s story in this edition.

n BARNSDALE LODGE’S chargrilled sword fish steak with mojo dressing and baby leaf salad.

01780 410355,

n Hambleton Hall will always provide a delicious hearty dish at Christmas time, but if you would prefer something lighter, enjoy pan fried fillet of red mullet with fennel, citrus fruit, squid and chorizo.

01572 756 991, www.hambleton 64

01572 724678,

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presented beautifully

Toft Country House Hotel serve a rather unusual fish dish; pan fried Barramundi steak with a pea and dill purée.


01778 590614,

Rutland Water Golf Course has a great restaurant and our favourite fish dish was a delicious roasted smoked salmon fillet with crayfish and samphire risotto, 01572 737525,

The George at Ashley serves a large portion of panfried seabass with Mediterranean vegetables and charred little gem, which we enjoyed as one of our main courses on our last visit. 01858 565411, n Featured dishes are representative examples of our featured chefs’ skills... the menus of our featured restaurants change frequently so dishes are subject to availability. Check each restaurant’s website prior to your visit for an up-to-date menu. 65

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Wine of the Month

Honey honey, oh, how you thrill me!

New gin from local producer Warner Edwards really is the bee’s knees!...

Serego Alighieri, Vaio Amarone della Valpolicella... £59.95 / 75cl, Grape Variety: 70% Corvina; 20% Rondinella, 10% Molinara 15.5% ABV

A stunning new gin from local producer Warner Edwards this month. Perfect for warming up your winter. It’s a floral and zesty gin with a long, lingering and gently sweet finish. 28 botanicals is infused with local honey: golden nectar from Warner Edwards’s own Hives on Falls Farm on the Leicestershire border! £40/70cl, 40% ABV.


1. One of Harish’s favourite Champagnes, Drappier offers offers aromas of white peach, quince and a touch of spice. The dry, elegant palate shows fine bubbles and a long, crisp finish. £34.95 / 70cl / 12% ABV. 2. A beautifully balanced style of rosé: elegant yet full of character. Pretty red berry aromas and Pinot Noir base lead to a delicate palate of summer fruit and herbs, finishing crisply dry and refreshing. £39.95 / 70cl / 12% ABV.

3. Beautifully pure, elegant wine, with a refreshing lemony aroma and a delicate mousse. Dry and with plenty of substance. Diamond & Jubilee edition featured here; £34.95 / 70cl / 14% ABV.

“Push the boat out this season and enjoy a heavyweight red that’s perfect for December; spicy and festive...!” Concentrated and elegant on the nose, with hints of spices and sumptuous ripe red fruit. Aged in cherry wood casks, this is an absolutely sublime red! n

Perfect for Pudding

An exceptional accompaniment to your Christmas pudding! Serve up a smasher with your Christmas pudding this month and enjoy a nose of candied lemon peel, honeysuckle, and white flowers. Nectarine, peach and apricots on the palate, and subtle botrytis notes of marmalade. A great pudding wine from Domaines Barons de Rothschild. n Chateau Rieussec, Cru Classe Sauternes, France, £34.49 37.5cl/13.5% ABV.

n Our featured wines are available to buy from Harish’s shop, Oakham Wines. Call 01572 757124 or visit his website


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No matter whereabouts you live in Rutland, the mansion at Burley on the Hill, visible for miles around looking over Rutland Water, is an enviable home and location.

If it’s somewhere you’ve always dreamed of living, you’re in luck. This month South House is on the market with Strutt & Parker. South House was originally part of the grand stable block to the main mansion. The mansion is Grade I Listed and dates from the late 17th Century.

It was converted from one residence in the mid 1990s by the acclaimed architect Kit Martin, who specialised in the sympathetic division of grand country houses, winning a number of listed accolades in the process including Country Life’s ‘Genius of the Place’ Award in 2007. South House is positioned on the east side of the colonnade and has far reaching views to the south and east as well as back over the colonnade and mansion itself.

The front door opens onto a hallway with a contemporary feel and this sets the mood for much of the house which can best be described as a seamless fusion of new and Right: The family room with a mezzanine level currently used as a study.


Far Right: Burley on the Hill is the highest point in Rutland and looks over Rutland Water.

Above: South House follows the colonnade that leads to the Mansion House.

Right: The kitchen is fitted with Gaggenau appliances and is an Italian bespoke design.

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old with high vaulted ceilings and original panelling providing the perfect backdrop to display a beautiful modern art collection.

To the left of the hall is the bespoke Italian kitchen fitted with Gaggenau appliances. French doors open to the south onto a beautifully designed walled garden created by Chelsea award-winning garden designer, RHS ambassador and Gardener’s World star Adam Frost. Beyond the kitchen, the drawing room has oak flooring and an inset stone fireplace with a stunning contemporary gas fire, high windows and panelled walls.

This room opens into the dining hall, which has a door that opens onto the colonnade. Rising from the dining room is an original

>> 73

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“Living at Burley on the Hill represents a different way of life, allowing you to enjoy the rights over 67 acres of gardens, grounds and woodland which form the estate...�

stone staircase with an iron balustrade. Another door leads through to a more relaxed family room with a mezzanine study area. Beyond this is shower room beside the study and bedroom five which has a kitchenette opposite and a rear hall with stairs leading up to bedrooms three and four, both of which have en suites. Back down the stairs will take you back around into the front hall where there is a cloakroom and, opposite the kitchen, a utility room.

The main stairs in the dining hall lead up to a galleried landing and two impressive and lovely bedrooms both of which could serve as principal bedrooms. Each has en suites and dressing areas and any choice as to which should be the principal would fall to personal preference.

The garden is south facing and accessed from both the kitchen and drawing room. There is a central lawn flanked by stone paths which are bordered by pleached lime trees.

Next to the house, there are two terraced areas for al fresco dining with a water feature dividing them and surrounded by swathes of lavender and clusters of immaculately cut box hedging.

At the end of the garden is a garage with bi-fold doors that lead to a private courtyard. The garage has under floor heating and is currently used as a games room and gym. There is a separate double garage, which is Main: The main sitting room currently done to a contemporary style. The stairs and hallway matches this design.


Right: The gardens have been designed by Adam Frost, star of Gardener’s World and Chelsea Flower Show award-winner.

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and a dedicated gravelled parking area for eight or more cars.

Living at Burley on the Hill truly represents a different way of life and the owners of South House enjoy the rights over the 67 acres of gardens, grounds and woodland which form the estate.

Part of this, to the south of the Mansion House, includes a deer park. In addition, and on an occasional basis, the stunning communal rooms in the Mansion itself are available and these include the Tapestry Room, The Garden Salon and The Ball Room. Finally, the owners can also enjoy the pedestrian rights of way over designated walks and rides in 400 acres of the beautiful Ancient Burley Wood.


BURLEY ON THE HILL Location: 1.7 miles from Oakham, 10.7 miles from Stamford. Style: Very contemporary interior and period property exterior. Bedrooms: Five bedrooms with the choice of two principal bedrooms and five bathrooms. Receptions: Five, currently arranged as breakfast kitchen, drawing room, dining room, family room and study. Other Features: 400 acres of parkland, 67 acres of gardens and the use of the Mansion House. Guide Price: ÂŁ1,795,000.

Find Out More: South House is currently on the market with estate agency Strutt and Parker. Call 01858 438723 to speak to estate agent for the property Edward Brassey or visit the website for more information. Alternatively, visit Edward in the office at 34 - 38 The Square, Market Harborough LE16 7PA.


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Your local appointed Sheraton dealer.

• Contemporary, modern, traditional & handmade bespoke kitchens

• 25 NEW large room settings in our showroom

• Affordable, quality kitchens and the latest designs on display The best quality, best value & best service from a company fitting kitchens since 1981

Come see our kitchens on display in our extensive showroom


T: 01780 756514 or 755855


Open Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm. Sat, 9am-3pm, closed all day Sunday


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For a glass of mulled wine and a mince pie, to stand by a wonderfully warm fire and discuss your stove requirements for 2018. Incentives being offered for all deposits taken before 23rd December 2017.

Unit 18a I Station Road Business Park Barnack I Stamford I Lincolnshire PE9 3DW

01780 769274 |

Mon– Fri 9am–5pm, Sat 10am–4pm |


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Launde House: Launde is currently on the market with a guide price of ÂŁ1,599,950. With unrivalled field views to the front and rear, and surrounded by its own four acres, Launde House provides a truly spacious family home in a beautiful, rural and idyllic location.

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Turning Houses into Homes

ESTATE AGENCY OWNER JAMES SELLICKS HAS ADVISED CLIENTS ON LOCAL PROPERTIES TOTALLING ABOUT £2.3 TRILLION DURING THE COURSE OF HIS FIRM’S 20 YEAR HISTORY. THE AGENCY HAS THREE BRANCHES, 27 MEMBERS OF STAFF AND 200 PROPERTIES ON ITS BOOKS AT ANY ONE TIME... WAITING IN RECEPTION, a rather exhausted looking couple in their scruffy clothes filter past me, jangling out of the door with their keys and a bottle of Champagne. It’s moving day!

a certain sector of the market, but the rise of ‘DIY’ agents will definitely see a polarisation of the market, with people like us, a full service agency, at the opposite end of the market.”

450? 500? James Sellicks can’t say exactly how many couples have filtered out of his office similarly attired, heading off to unpack box after box and settle into their new home. Couples are usually exhausted, and having packed up, boxed up and picked up the contents of one house, to move to another, the hard work doesn’t stop there. Once in their new home it’s time to unpack, clean up and of course, locate the kettle.

Top View, Burrough on the Hill, £1m: Spacious single storey property with spectacular views, contemporary interiors and swimming pool.

The work might not be over for the couple, but for the team at estate agency James Sellicks, it’s a job well done; helping clients to find new owners for their home and guiding them through to completion.

“It’s a case of plus ça change,” says James. “Many things have changed in the industry over the past two decades, and yet, at the same time, some things never change. Local knowledge was important back in 1997 when we established the business, and it’s just as important now.”

The Windmill, Morcott, £1.5m: Fabulous opportunity to purchase one of the county’s most unique character homes - a six bedroom former windmill.

“Back then we were working from Rolodex databases and hand-written notes. Photos had to be developed at photolabs and there was no such thing as online property marketing.”

“Our Oakham office, which opened in 2013, relies on local knowledge and an understanding of the appreciation for the character and rural aesthetic of the county. The water is an enormous influence, and people are very protective and very proud of the county.”

“Even within England’s smallest county there are real differences, like the steep variance in property prices as one moves to the North West of the county and the different characters of Rutland’s villages. Even with the technology that’s changed the market over the past two decades there’s simply no substitute for local knowledge and - especially in Rutland - a good, professional relationship with the client.”

“The market itself has undergone enormous changes in the past two decades, with house prices rising around 250%. But the average mortgage rate has dropped from about 7% to 2%, so there is still keen interest across the whole country and still a strong demand for property in Rutland.”

“Today, digital photography, video and websites mean a richer way for vendors to search for a new home. But still, local understanding remains crucial for representing our clients effectively, and so does creating a sound strategy for each individual property we have, taking each house or estate on its own individual merits.”

“The latest industry trend is the online estate agent. I’m not disputing that has its place in

“You’d be amazed how nuanced the market is, even from one of our three offices to the other. We established our Leicester office in 1997, and footfall is more important in that office. We opened our Market Harborough office two years later. It’s a larger area, generally featuring quite affluent properties.”

“Whether you’re seeking a new home or you’re looking to move house,” says James, “Rutland’s market remains strong and the county continues to offer multum in parvo!” n

Above: The team from James Sellicks’s Rutland office.

n James Sellicks has three branches in Leicester, Market Harborough and Oakham. Visit Catmos Street, Oakham LE15 6HW. Call 01572 724437 or see


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CHRISTMAS The Perfect Kitchen in Time for

Your kitchen becomes a hive of activity, whether for the big day itself or for social events throughout the festive season. It is at times like this that your kitchen is put to the test. Oliver’s Kitchens based in Oakham has the solution to creating your perfect kitchen for Christmas... Words: Lucy Evetts.


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“MANUFACTURED IN NORTHAMPTONSHIRE USING THE FINEST QUALITY OAK, AN OLIVER’S KITCHEN IS BUILT TO LAST AND TO FULFIL DREAMS...” The best thing about an island is you have full control over what units it is comprised of, this can suit your needs exactly.

To ease congestion in the kitchen, areas for specific uses are incredibly useful. A breakfast area with bifold doors down to the worktop means that everything is in one place and easy to access at busy times. We are coming up to that time of year when families gather together to celebrate the season. Your kitchen becomes a hive of activity, whether for the big day itself or for social events throughout the festive season. It is at times like this that your kitchen is put to the test.

So, what makes the perfect Christmas kitchen? There are a few aspects of the kitchen that can make life a lot easier when there is a lot going on at once. Preparation and serving areas are vital at these busy times of the year for both your safety and your sanity! Consider which areas


Left: Your Oliver’s kitchen will be built using only the

finest quality oak manufactured to the highest possible standard.

of the kitchen you spend the most time in when preparing and serving food.

You want to try to ensure everything you need is close at hand so you don’t have to keep leaving what you are doing to fetch things from the opposite side of the room.

Ideally your prep area is close to the sink and the bin. Integrated bins are a great idea as they are invisible when closed and depending on the size of unit, you can have more than one bin in there allowing you to have rubbish and recycling in the same place. Another thing to consider is where oils, herbs and spices are kept. A specific pull-out unit located next to the hob means everything is close to hand when you are cooking.

Having your utensils close by is also a must. A utensil insert in a drawer will keep everything organised and in the right place.

You need to ensure you have enough clear worktop space next to the oven upon which to safely place hot dishes from the oven.

An island is a good option if space allows as it can provide plenty of extra serving space when you have lots of different food to serve at once.

It can also be closed away to keep everything tidy once the breakfast rush is over. A dedicated drinks area is a great feature to bring into your kitchen or dining room. A built-in wine cooler, wine racks and glazed units to show off your glassware create the perfect entertaining area for your festive get togethers.

All of this could be a reality if you choose Oliver’s Kitchens to create your perfect kitchen. Manufactured in Northamptonshire using the finest quality oak, an Oliver’s kitchen is built to last and to fulfil dreams.

Visit Oliver’s Kitchens Oakham Showroom or call them now to arrange an appointment with one of their designers. Don’t delay; they have limited spaces available for a pre-Christmas delivery. “Residents and their families are at the heart of everything we do.” n Call the Oakham Showroom for Oliver’s Kitchens on 01572 842027. Contact the Northamptonshire Factory on 01604 420368. Alternatively, visit The showroom is 1 High Street, Oakham, Rutland LE15 6AJ.


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Windows | Doors | Bi-Folding Doors

Top Quality Timber and uPVC Windows VIsit our Caythorpe showroom to experience unsurpassed quality, style and value... The Old Barn, Elms Farm, Frieston Heath, Caythorpe, Lincs NG32 3HD

01476 578699 01400 272538 84

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GATES Visit Winter Wonderland at


With a dedicated Christmas department covering over 14,000sq ft, Cold Overton’s Gates Garden Centre presents a range of festive decorations in 12 different themes. Here, we present six of the themes for creating tree-mendous decorations from alternative to vintage to traditional... 86

Create a Christmas tree that’s festive and fabulous with our favourite shopping destination for tree decorations. The store has over 100 members of staff and 12 different themes to decorate your tree. This year, themes include Enchanted Forest, Vintage Rose, Colourburst, Champagne Crystals, Feathered Friends, Candy Cane Lane, Frosty Morning, Victorian Times, Copper Sunset, Countryman, Royal Poinsettia and Après Ski.

In addition to the centre’s Christmas tree themes, you’ll find real and artificial trees, lights, lanterns, tableware and accessories and much more. There’s also a well-stocked gift department, a 360-seater restaurant and over 6,500 free car parking spaces, making your Christmas shopping easier than ever. Gates is such a gem to have on our doorstep, offering a similar amount, quality and shopping experience to London stores such as Selfridges and Fortnum & Mason. We have six of the 12 themes on this page.

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1. Colourburst

2. Feathered Friends

3. Victorian Times

As the name suggests, this collection is bursting with colour. Add a little bit of fun to Christmas with this eccentric collection of decorations...

Inspired by the rising trend in birds featured on Christmas trees, Gates has a Feathered Friends section featuring owls, pinecones and holly...

If you opt for a more traditional Christmas, there is a section at Gates dedicated to Victorian styles. Also pictured here is Santa Claus’s Book of Secrets...

4. Vintage Rose

5. Countryman

6. Aprés Ski

Vintage Rose is a collection with neutral tones and woodland floor features. Our favourite element in this collection is the velvet mushroom...

For fellow countrymen, this collection will suit you. With tartan, feathers, jute and not forgetting the stag head, this is a tree for a country home...

For the party animals among us, you may like the store’s Aprés Ski range. Look out for Santa relaxing in his ski chalet hot tub!

Metallic hat £6.49, multi-coloured lights garland £19.99, glass harlequin bauble £4.99, glass Jolene bauble £3.99, golden mask £5.99, Starburst decorations £1.99, emerald and gold droplet bauble £3.99 for two.

Velvet and pearl mushroom £24.99, pearl and lace bauble £6.99 for three, poinsettia £5.99, sequin baubles £1.49, rose £1.99, rose lantern £11.99, glitter crown £5.99, pink butterfly £4.49.

Large owl £49.99, Christmas tree £8.99, green poinsettia £2.49, robin snow globe £17.99, glass bauble with birds £2.99, natural mix clear bauble £5.99, copper feather bird £3.99.

Large stag head £59.99, tartan and jute bauble £3.49, feathered bauble £2.99, fabric fox £6.49, tweed star £2.99, chocolate stag horns ball £1.49, tweed mitten £2.49, stitched Christmas tree £2.99.

Father Christmas £29.99, cone £7.95, red velvet leaf £2.99, clock bauble £5.49, fabric ball £4.49, fabric star £3.99, small santa £3.99, gold and pearl bauble £3.49, Santa Claus, The Book of Secrets £12.99.

Gold bar money box £3.49, wine glass £3.49, martini glass £1.49, raspberry orchid stem £3.49, gold poinsettia £3.99, gold lily £3.49, purple bauble £3.49, gold peacock bauble £5.99, pink bauble £8.99.

All of our featured decorations are available from Gates Garden Centre, based at Cold Overton, near Oakham LE15 7QB. Call 01664 454309 or see


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HOME Words: Tilly Wilkinson. Photos: John Lewis, Queensgate, Peterborough.


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Enjoy all things bright and beautiful this very merry season from the comfort of your ho-ho-home. Choose from a gorgeous selection of baubles, decorations and sparkling lights to decorate your Christmas tree... A popular talking point when it comes to Christmas is John Lewis. Surprisingly, it’s the brand’s Christmas advert that people look forward to the most. However, its enormous selection of Christmas gifts and decorations is also eagerly awaited, and this has never been more true than for 2017.

The collection which boasts fun this year is the Lima Llama collection perfect for a child’s bedroom. It draws on Peruvian festivals and adds lots and lots of colour to your home.

Each theme is inspired by fables and traditions from a different country or region. Folklore takes its cue from Eastern European traditions, whilst Winter Palace tells the story of Russia’s Father Frost and his helper the Snow Maiden.

The final collection of decorations is Mitsuko styled on Japanese shadow puppetry, an ancient form of storytelling. This theme boasts opulence and style, and there are lots of modern themes in the Mitsuko range.

Tales of the Maharaja invites the myths and tales told through classical Indian dance into your home. Showcasing a beautiful use of colour, this collection is alive with vibrant washes of oranges and teals, sequins and feathers.

This year, the Christmas giant has travelled the world - literally - to bring together seven brand new decoration themes.

Into the Woods is one of our favourite themes this year, set in the mossy enchanted forests of Ireland. Highland Myths is also a very beautiful and contemporary range of decorations taken from the hills of Scotland, based on gold, mauve and copper hues.


A selection of some of our favourite baubles from the latest collections...

From Left: Into the Woods, iridescent purple ribbed finial £6, Highland Myths, snow blizzard mauve bauble £5, Mitsuko clear marbled petrol bauble £4, Winter Palace, ornate royal blue onion bauble £7, Into the Woods, green marbled sequin bauble £4, Tales of the Maharaja, floral gem trellis pink bauble £6.

Top: Into the Woods is our favourite theme inspired by Ireland’s mossy forests. Above: The Folklore theme inspired by Eastern European traditions. Left: Highland Myths.

The majority of John Lewis’s tree ornaments are hand blown and hand decorated by skilled artisans in Europe and Asia. The brand celebrates their skills with a collection called Art of the Glassmaker. They’re also bringing tinsel back as they update the retro decoration and offer it in exciting new guises.

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Above: Baubles from the Tales of the Maharaja collection. We especially like the one far left - the pompom spot bauble, £6.

DECORATIONS FOR THE DOOR Left: Folklore Frosted Red Berry Wreath, £25.

Left: The Winter Palace decoration theme inspired by Russian folklore and tradition.

Right: Snowy Eucalyptus Berries Wreath, £30.

Visit for more information or visit the store at Queensgate Shopping Centre, Peterborough.

>> 92

Above: Mitsuko, the collection inspired by the ancient story telling art of Japanese shadow puppetry is also available from John Lewis in Queensgate.

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FANTASTIC REDUCTIONS IN ALL OUR RANGE OF CARPETS, VINYL & WOOD FLOORING 100% Wool Natural rib One colour only 4 & 5 metre wide Heavy Domestic Normal Price £19.00 per square metre SALE PRICE £6.00 per square metre One Colour ONLY 5 metre wide Heavy Domestic Wool Twist Normal Price £22.00 per square metre SALE PRICE £7.00 per square metre 4 Colours in Heavy domestic 4 metre wide Polypropylene Twist Normal price £15.00 per square metre SALE PRICE £8.00 per square metre OCW Wool Twist in 4 and 5 metre wide Heavy Domestic Normal price £18.00 per square metre SALE PRICE £14.00 per square metre

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Our Famous Hand made readymade Curtains In Three Designs in 4 standard sizes All lined and weighted Normal Price from £49.00 a pair SALE PRICE from just £30.00 a pair Ready Made Curtains lined Most Sizes available including Eyelets normal prices from £26.00 per pair SALE PRICE from £19.00 per pair

Quality Roller Blinds from stock ALL Colours and sizes Normal Price from £19.00 SALE PRICE from £15.00 Swish the curtain rail of quality All sizes from stock Normal Price from £16.00 for a 125cm width SALE PRICE £12.00 for 125cm width Cushions in a host of sizes all ready to take away SALE PRICE fromjust £10.00 each

We also have Poles. Venetian and vertical blinds in beautiful designs along with solid wood, And don't forget our handmade hand sewn service. Units 4/8 Eastwood Road, Oundle, Peterborough, PE8 4DF Open: Mon to Fri 9am – 5pm, Sat 9am – 4pm 95

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Let us build your

perfect studio Garden Houses • Arts and Crafts Studios Holiday Homes • Home Offices & Writing Cabins Custom studios built the way you want 28 years experience, no job to big or small Prices from £9,995 to £149,995

Oak Leaf STUDIOS Horncastle Road, Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire LN10 6UZ

01526 268591 07498 663422 • 96

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For the enthusiastic and brave-hearted gardeners among you, there is still so much to do in the garden at this time of year if you’re prepared to take on the inevitable cold weather. Dan Hancock from Gates Garden Centre this month discusses how to prepare your garden for 2018... Words/Images: Tilly Wilkinson.

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“Now is the best time to prune apple and pear trees. Try to create an open, balanced structure to encourage quality fruit production. Tie grease bands on their trunks to prevent wingless winter moths laying their eggs in the canopy...” >> Every month we feature a garden that is open for the National Gardens Scheme. However, no matter how beautiful the gardens are in summer, many garden owners don’t want us to visit in winter. We don’t take it to heart though, as we understand that gardens definitely do not look their best in winter. That’s why we’ve visited Dan Hancock, head gardener at Gates Garden Centre to understand what needs to be done in the garden at this time of year, and how we can prepare our green spaces for 2018.

Dan has been head gardener at Gates for the past five years and has always had a passion for gardening. He’s worked in garden centres since the age of 17 and trained at Brooksby College. “Winter is the time for a general tidy up of the garden,” says Dan. “Tidy up perennials which have finished flowering, then cover with a mulch to protect over winter and feed in spring.” “There is still time to plant tulip bulbs in December, as long as the ground is not frozen. Winter prune wisteria and cut back summer side shoots to two or three buds; this will encourage flower bud formation in the spring.” “Tidy any fallen leaves from around the roots of rose plants to reduce the chance of black spot infection.”

“Remember to lift and store dahlia tubers once the leaves have been blackened by the first frosts. Rinse off any loose soil, then stand the tuber upside down to dry. Place the tubers in a box and cover with dry soil.” “In empty vegetable patches and kitchen gardens, dig the soil over and cover over with manure. Cover over winter brassicas with netting to protect from hungry pigeons.”

“Now is the best time to prune apple and pear trees. Try to create an open, balanced structure to encourage quality fruit production. Tie grease bands around the trunks of fruit trees to prevent the


wingless winter moth from laying their eggs in the canopy.” “Plant raspberry, blackcurrant, gooseberry and blueberry canes now, whilst they are dormant.”

Above: Gates Garden Centre has a vast selection of winter planting to add a touch of colour to winter gardens.

“Clean out the greenhouse, washing the glass, floor and staging with a disinfectant to kill off any overwintering pests and diseases.”

“Spike the lawn with a garden fork to improve drainage and aeration, and rake up any fallen leaves to prevent dead patches. Clean down an algae and moss covered patio, scrub with a liquid patio cleaner or use a pressure washer.” “To encourage wildlife, plant bare root hedging to create natural boundaries, pile up old logs to provide shelter and keep bird feeders stocked up with seeds and peanuts.” Dan says that there is still time to see colour in gardens in the form of winter berries like purple callicarpa, red holly and of course, beautiful red poinsettia.

n Dan is the head gardener at Gates Garden Centre. While you’re there browsing its 14,000 sq ft of Christmas or its vast selection of gifts, don’t forget to visit the huge plants department and ask Dan for for more info on what to do in the garden in winter. The centre is on Somerby Road, Cold Overton, Oakham LE15 7QB. Visit

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Deck the Hall Winter weddings are magical, but a winter wedding at Rushton Hall is perfection. The venue was the ideal solution for Nathan and Hayley, local to the area and looking for the ‘wow-factor’ winter wonderland wedding... Photographer: Olivia Johnston, 07542 915481,

Nathan and Hayley both grew up in Corby living just down the road from each other. They first met at an 18th birthday party and started dating in 2008. Hayley is now a solicitor in London and Nathan is a professional driver. “Nathan proposed at midnight on our five year anniversary,” says Hayley. “My whole family were in on it; my sister even went with him to choose my engagement ring. He is an excellent baker and made my favourite cake. On top of the cake was the ring box in a little cupcake case!” “We started planning almost straight away. We both knew that we wanted a December

wedding because be both love Christmas. Rushton Hall was 10 minutes down the road and offered that wow factor we were looking for; it ticked all of the boxes. Our colour scheme was based on my emerald and gold engagement ring. I couldn’t have planned all of the elements without my wedding planner journal, it was a life saver!” “I absolutely loved shopping for my wedding dress. I went along to a bridal boutique in Northampton and didn’t know what to do when the dress I had in mind didn’t suit. The sales assistant suggested I try on something completely different. I was reluctant but decided to be open minded. It was absolutely perfect and I burst into tears!”

“I was so proud to have my two sisters Abbie and Beth and my childhood best friend, Kirsty, as my bridesmaids. They wore deep emerald green dresses to match my ring.”

“My aunt offered to make our wedding cake. We went for lemon drizzle cake and chocolate cake for tiers. Although she made enough for more than double the guests, it was so good that every single slice went!” “Our photographer Olivia was absolutely amazing. We got on so well with her and she put us completely at ease. It was just like she was another guest.” “Waking down the aisle was a total blur. I was so nervous I think I held my breath all


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“We honeymooned in Lapland, snowmobiling, seeing the Northern Lights and husky sledding..!” the way down the aisle! We wrote our own vows so it was very emotional. I’m told there wasn’t a dry eye in the room.”

“Having our family and friends together for one big celebration was incredible. I’d really recommend having a short receiving line to say hello to all of your guests which can be difficult otherwise.”

“The highlight of the evening was dancing and singing to Jump Around by House of Pain with my dad at the end of the night!”

“Our honeymoon was a week in Lapland. We stayed in a chalet-style hotel with log fires. We went snowmobiling at night to see the northern lights, a trip on a reindeer pulled sleigh, and husky sledding through the snowy forest. I just wish we could do the wedding and honeymoon all over again!”

Photographer: Olivia Johnston, 07542 915481,


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Wedding Venues

If you’re in the throes of wedding planning, your wedding venue will be your first and most important choice. To help you make the decision, here is a roundup of some of the very best wedding venues in our county. Visit to discover more venues... BARNSDALE LODGE, EXTON




Luxurious and comfortable country house hotel offering weddings for 20 to 180 and a dedicated wedding planner plus the availability of the adjacent Exton Estate and its Grade II listed lakeside folly, Fort Henry. n

Say “I Do” at this Grade I listed hall, which dates back to the 1560s. Weddings available in the venue’s Grade I listed orangery, 29 bedrooms and first class dining. Wedding packages from £5,000-£18,000. n

Grade I listed hall 20 minutes from Rutland with 46 beautiful bedrooms, and four wedding rooms plus a brand new orangery and three AA rosette dining. Exclusive use available, wedding packages from £94-£135/person. n

Marquee-lined wedding barn and courtyard for weddings up to 180 guests, plus six beautiful new letting rooms including bridal suite. Wedding packages from £70/head. Panoramic views over Rutland Water. n

The Avenue, Exton, Oakham LE15 8AH. Telephone: 01572 724678

Barton Hall Hotel, Barton Seagrave NN15 6SG, Telephone: 01536 515505 see

Rushton Hall, Rushton NN14 1RR Telephone: 01536 713001

Rutland Water Golf Course, Edith Weston LE15 8HB, Telephone: 01572 737525





Grange Farm provides a lakeside marquee venue for up to 250 guests. Scenic background with adjacent woodland. Heated/air conditioned marquee, furniture and bar. Venue can recommend outside catering partners. n

Beautiful country house hotel set in 38 acres, civil licensed with wedding packages and bespoke options. 44 beds. Wedding Showcase on 24th September from 11.30am - 3pm. Dedicated wedding coordinator. n

Newly refurbished at a cost of £130,000, the Ballroom of Wansford’s Haycock can accommodate weddings for up to 240 guests, with pretty gardens, a civil license and a dedicated wedding coordinator. n

Home to the Saunders Watson family, and built for William the Conqueror, civil weddings for up to 100 guests can be held in the Great Hall or Panel Room, and the gardens and grounds make a great backdrop for photographs. n

Wittering Grange, Wansford PE8 6NR Telephone: 01780 782459

Kilworth House Hotel, North Kilworth LE17 6JE Telephone: 01858 880058

The Haycock Hotel, Wansford PE8 6JA Telephone: 01780 782223

Rockingham Castle, Rockingham LE16 8TH Telephone: 01536 770240

To advertise here: Call 01529 469977 and talk to one of our friendly team members


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4. 2.



Ruby Red



Your Christmas Day outfit isn’t complete without a touch of red. These are our favourite fashions... 1. Oliver Bonas, Teagan geo shape card pocket £19.50. 2. Joid’art candy gold and enamel cuff necklace £97. 3. White Stuff juniper cord skirt £45. 4. Wallis red plain wrap top £30. 5. Vera Moda red sequin top £40. 6. Karen Millen patent Brompton clutch bag £135. 7. Links London regent red watch £695. 8. Dune London Reenie £145. 9. Oasis red tassel earrings £call. 10. Oasis red strappy dress £call. 11. Dune London Mortimer £65. 12. Barbour quilted purse £35.95.



8. 9. 7.

Featured Items: Visit the website’s of these brands to see where these items are stocked in Rutland and the surrounding area.


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PARTY Ready to

Red Carpet Ready are the UK’s largest dress specialists, based near Lincoln, stocking over 2,000 dresses for all budgets across short, midi and long styles. If you’re celebrating Christmas, the New Year or if you’ve a youngster planning a Prom in the family, it’s time to get Ready to party... Words/Images: Rob Davis. Sequin dress, £250, in Rosegold, Royal Blue, Wine or Navy.

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(Left to Right) Off the shoulder dress, £395 in Red, White, Navy, Burgundy. Sequin-embellished halter-neck dress £360 also in Navy/Silver, Black/Gold, Burgundy/Silver. Encrusted halter neck dress with train £315 also in Blush, Navy, Red, Silver Green, Wine. Opaque encrusted dress in tulle-style fabric £625 in Navy Crystal Encrusted or Diamond Crystal Encrusted.


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Red Carpet Ready’s range of over 2,000 dresses will ensure this season’s festive partygoers, and prom queens will find the perfect dress, with short and long styles, and many styles available in up to 27 different colourways, plus exclusive designs created for the Lincoln retailer. n

(Red Dresses, Above L-R): £365 in Red, Burgundy Navy, Silver, Blush; £995 in Red, Black or Blush; £345 Red Only; £595 Red or Blush. (Gold Dresses, Top/Right L-R): £455 in Gold, Black/Gold, Wine/Gold, Navy/Gold, Gunmetal Silver; £745 in Gold, Rose gold, Gunmetal, Red, Turquoise. £395 2 Piece in Red, Black, Fuchsia, Royal Blue, gold; £510. (Silver Dresses, Left L-R): £745 also in Gold, Rose gold, Gunmetal, Red, Turquoise; Back Middle Couture Feather Gown £895; End Back Couture Feather Gown £1,100; Front Middle £465. (Burgundy Dresses, Right L-R): Two piece £449 also in Ivory, Burgundy, Navy, Gold; Top back middle £395 also in Wine & Red; Right £290 also in Black or Wine; Front Middle £455 also in Gold, Black/Gold, Wine/Gold, Navy/Gold, Gunmetal Silver.

Featured dresses are available from Red Carpet Ready, Hall Lane, Branston near Lincoln. Open seven days a week until 9pm but please prebook on 01522 793777. All styles and prices of their entire ranges can be viewed on Please note Instagram page @RedCarpetReadyLincoln.


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LOOK GREAT and STAY WARM THIS SEASON This month we’ve got country clothing from R& R Country

On the First Day of Christmas

On the Second Day of Christmas

Joules Ladies Balmoral Wax Jacket, £139. Fairfax & Favor Imperial Explorers in Mahogany, £375 The British Bag Company Brenais Travel Holdall £75. Joules Bracken Scarf in multi gingham, £14.95

Fairfax & Favor Amira Boots, £395. Dubarry Ladies Honeysuckle Cord Trousers in navy, £99. Jack Murphy Nicole Tweed Coat in navy, £160. Fairfax & Favor Pembroke Handbag in tan £285.

On the Third Day of Christmas

On the Fourth Day of Christmas

Joules Ladies Wensley Longline Scarf in navy, £19.95. Cove Ladies Tee in white, £30. Jott Ladies Seda Gilet in fuchsia £125. Toggi Sherburn Tweed Bag, £70.

Fairfax & Favor Imperial Explorers in Mahogany, £375. Dubarry Ladies Honeysuckle Cord Trousers in navy, £99. Joules Ladies Miranda Intarsia Jumper in red, £59.95.

Featured products are stocked by R&R Country Ltd., Waltham Road, Thorpe Arnold, Melton Mowbray LE14 4SD. For more information call 01664 465000 or see 115

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1. HELPING HANDS THIS WINTER Winter is tough on hands, with dry, cracked hands a common complaint. Whether preparing Christmas lunch or wrapping presents, your hands will thank you for Goldfaden’s Hands at Heart with restorative ingredients like retinol and glucosamine. Avocado oil nourishes and perfects skin £35.

A Little Festive Sparkle

2. From Spa to Home

Spa brand Elemis has released a special edition festive gift set to allow your loved one to take the spa experience home with them. Frangipane Body Beautiful is available for £38, whilst Frangipane Treasures features five products including an Elemis scented candle for £89.

3. Skincare for Men

Our favourite range of men’s cosmetics is Deborah Mitchell’s collection of pre-shave scrubs, shave creams and oils, moisturisers, eye creams and masks. Limited edition five piece set contains the brand’s ‘essentials,’ a personal favourite available for £91.

4. Restore Winter Skin Restore winter skin with Fluer D’Orange truly luxurious Moroccanoil body butter. Energise and restore winter skin with blossom orange, mango butter and pomegranate oils. Also available in a freshly-cut rose scent, as shown here £42.

5. Beauty from the Inside Give your skin a boost over the colder months with Ingenious Beauty’s Ultimate Collagen+. Overtime, skin looks healthier, hair is thicker and nails noticeably stronger and best of all, it’s a 100% natural supplement to a good diet and a good night’s sleep £75.

n John Rohnan-Wharff is a beauty and makeup blogger, who reviews and rates products at All products from good independent stockists unless otherwise stated, prices are RRP. 117

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To view photographs from The Event visit

Women in Philanthropy

Tour of Melton Defence Animal Training Regiment Women in Philanthropy (or WiPs) is a group of ladies that are dedicated to helping unsung and unseen local charities that contribute so much to the area. This year, WiPs’s chosen charities are New Dawn New Day, the Evington Centre

and the Centre for Fun and Families. All the charities are doing a superb job of supporting local people.

The group met at the Melton Defence Animal Training Regiment. After speeches from Dr Sarah Furness and Captain Josh

Welbourn, the chosen charities took turns to tell the group what they stand for.

This was followed by a tour of the estate’s facilities including the school of farriery and equitation. n See

Feature your event in our magazine. 120

Call 01529 469977 and speak to our Events Desk...

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View photographs from this event online. Visit


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You & Beyond Reopens as Rubirox

STAMFORD Established Stamford Jewellery retailer You & Beyond will officially reopen under a new name as Pride goes to press in a newly refitted store. The reopening will take place on Saturday 18th November, Following a three week refurbishment project, which has updated the retailer to include a new ‘shop-in-shop’ area for its most popular brands Pandora, Nomination and Daisy London. As part of its relaunch, the store will also be introducing two new brands, Alex & Ani and Ted Baker, offering affordable luxury jewellery and Watch brands. After winning the Pandora ‘shop-in-shop’ of the year award in 2016, the project will build on the recognition of the customer service and under anew name, give the shop a fresh elegant design. There will also be a significant update to the look of the

retailer’s website, with the ability to buy products online. Located on St Mary’s Street, in Stamford, the store will have a grand re-opening on Saturday 18th November from

Is Oakham ready for Sushi? New restaurant says “Hai!”



10am, where the first five customers through the doors with receive a £50 gift voucher and the following 50 will take home an Alex & Ani ‘goody bag.’

OAKHAM Oakham has a new restaurant, offering the deliciously different delicacy of sushi! Husband and wife team, Romy and Sam Letteri have long considered sushi a joint passion, and realised it was the one food missing back home in Oakham. Rutland’s a great county for providing unique and delicious cuisine but sushi was missing from the menu. Sam now feels confident enough that he can fill Rutland’s only missing culinary niche, having lived and worked across Asia for many years.

There will be drinks and canapés on offer whilst customers browse the retailer’s new Winter collections and Christmas promotions. n See The chef knew exactly what dishes he would want to bring to life and feature on the menu. “We wanted to bring our favourite food to Rutland!” he says. Broaden your taste buds with an ever evolving, nutritious menu committed to delivering healthy, delicious food for customers, young and old. Come join Romy and Sam or take away, for responsibly sourced, reasonably priced, mouth watering delights! n Fish Tank Sushi is now open for business on Church Street in Oakham. Call 01572 720077 or see for

CAVELLS OPEN ‘HOME’ DEPARTMENT The team at Cavells is delighted to announce that it will be opening a brand new Home department on Thursday 16th November. Cavells Home will play host to a hugely exciting and unique collection of furniture, lighting, homeware and gifts sourced and curated by a dedicated Home buying team. The collection has been carefully selected from a wide variety of designers; some based in the UK but many others from across Europe. Cavells Home has been able to secure the first UK exposure CAVELLS

for a number of collections and products, offering Rutland and the surrounding counties a genuinely new shopping experience. Expanding out into Cavells warehouse space, the 1000sqft homeware area is currently under renovation but will offer a light, airy and contemporary space to find something very special for the home. Details of the launch event will be released very shortly!

n For more information about Cavells Home, please visit the fashion brand’s main website or call them on 01572 770600.

Truly Luxurious Apartments near Oundle...


Craig Compton Builders...

CRAIG COMPTON “Established in 2005, we have built a reputation on delivering a professional and trustworthy service.” “We pride ourselves on not only delivering high quality workmanship but also going the extra mile to deliver a great customer experience.” “We understand having building work done at home or on a project can be stressful, but we work with you from the outset to minimize this.” “Taking the extra time to discuss your requirements is important to us and we consistently receive kind feedback commenting on our excellent customer care.” “We take on a variety of works on a range of buildings including extensions, new builds, renovation projects and garden offices. We stonework is to a high standard.” “Although our business is based in Stamford and the surrounding area, depending on the work required, we are happy to travel a distance from our base to bring our quality service to you.” “If you are thinking of having some work carried out, whether at home or for your business, please do not hesitate to phone us to discuss.” n Call them on 01780 482933 or 07821 057965 or find more info at

LADY ROTHSCHILD DAIRY If you’re seeking luxury self-catering accommodation for family gatherings or to accommodate visitors, Ashton Wold, near Oundle, is home to The Lady Rothschild Dairy. The estate has three luxury holiday apartments all arranged around a central courtyard. The apartments have been beautifully designed and furnished to ensure the last word in luxury. Features include en suite bathrooms, open plan living spaces, spiral staircases and cosy attic rooms, plus fully equipped kitchens. n Lady Rothschild Dairy’s estates are available

29th - 30th

Cavells Home...

PETERBOROUGH CATHEDRAL has come up with a wonderful way of entertaining the family during the Christmas break, showing favourite Christmas movies on Friday 29th and Saturday 30th December. See Arthur Christmas, It’s a Wonderful Life, Polar and Home Alone Tickets are £6. n Full details are online at or call 01733 452336.

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for short stays and weekly rentals, £1,610 £1,995 week, visit www.ashtonestatecountry or call 01832 272264.



REVEALED A GREAT PLACE FOR BESPOKE LEATHER GOODS If you’re looking for luxury leather goods, Bartosz LigezaSwidzinski has a range of over 250 bespoke leather belts and other products for both men and women. The retailer established his business back in 2013 but recently moved to Stamford’s Corn Exchange Shopping Arcade where, he says, business is booming. Bartosz also provides a bespoke service providing madeto-measure belts in custom sizes, as well as wallets, bracelets, handbags and purses. All of Bartosz’s products are made from a single piece of naturally tanned cow hide and the retailer also has sheepskin products and pet accessories too. n Revealed is based in Unit 1, Corn Exchange Shopping Arcade, Broad Street, Stamford PE9 1PX.


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Give the Gift of Rutland this Season

It’s easy to subscribe to the County’s Finest Magazine, either to enjoy yourself, or to be delivered to a friend or loved one as a Gift Subscription throughout 2018. Six months for £18, 12 months for £36, both delivered by Royal Mail.

Call 01529 469977 and pay by credit or debit card, or subscribe online at

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The Best 4x4


In our part of the world, nothing beats the security, sure-footedness and elevated ride height of a vehicle with four wheel drive. Whether winter motoring brings heavy snowfall, slippery back roads or standing water and muddy verges, the latest all wheel drive cars blend style with safety and luxury... 126

Winter driving, even at a sedate pace, can be fraught with hazards in our part of the world.

Sure, we may not be afflicted by drifts of snow several feet deep like other climates. But with muddy verges, pothole-strewn back roads and the danger of black ice where the shade of hedgerows prevents winter sun from thawing roads out, a decent 4x4 is nothing short of essential for our part of the world. Rejoice then, as there are four new-ish choices for those looking for safer winter driving. These models all offer not just sure-footed handing, but decent economy thanks - in the most cases - to the latest hybrid drivetrain technology and eight speed automatic gearboxes.

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Four Doors, Four Wheel Drive, Four Choices...

Three of our featured cars - the Audi, Porsche and Volvo - can be plugged into a standard household socket to offer cheaper company car bills, and a few miles of fossil fuel-free motoring. The Porsche offers an electric range of about 24 miles, the Volvo offers 27 miles of electric range and the Audi provides 34 miles. All of these figures are best case scenario, though, so don’t dismiss the Discovery on the basis of its conventional diesel engine. Expect a real world economy figure for the hybrid vehicles to plummet when on the motorway, where lugging around a heavy electric unit is more of a hindrance, and expect that electric range to fall dramatically in cold weather, too.

Words: Rob Davis.

Audi Q7 3.0TDi e-tron Quattro: 3.0V6 diesel, hybrid electric drivetrain, all wheel drive and eight speed auto gearbox. Seats seven, with luggage space for 650-1,835 litres (seats up/down). 143mph top speed, 0-60mph 6.2 secs. Economy 148.7mpg. £66,510.

Porsche Cayenne E-Hybrid Platinum: 3.0 V6 hybrid petrol electric drivetrain with eight speed automatic gearbox and all wheel drive. Seats five, with luggage space for 580-1,690 litres. 151mph top speed, 0-60mph 5.9 secs. Economy 85.6mpg. £67,626.

Volvo XC90 2.0 T8 Inscription Pro: 2.0V4 petrol electric hybrid drivetrain, with all wheel drive and eight speed auto gearbox. Seats seven, with luggage space for 314-1,869 litres (seats up/down). 143mph top speed, 0-60mph 5.6 secs. Economy 134.5mpg. £69,615.

Land Rover Discovery First Edition: 3.0 V6 diesel with eight speed automatic gearbox and all wheel drive. Seats seven, with luggage space for 258-2406 litres. 130mph top speed, 0-60mph 8.1 secs. Economy 39.2mpg. £68,595

“The breadth of capability displayed by each of our featured models is impressive, but they’re also surprisingly economical...” All the cars featured here feature all wheel drive, but the Discovery is unique in providing low-range gears for serious off-roading. The Land Rover, Volvo and Porsche all ride on air suspension, the Audi rides on springs unless specified otherwise.

The Audi and Porsche have the most roadbiased, car-like dynamic, but the Land Rover is the most comfortable off the beaten track. On the other hand, if it’s a luxurious cabin you’re seeking, the Volvo’s iPad-like central display, minimalist Scandinavian cockpit

and ergonomic seats combine with a generous tally of standard equipment.

All of the models here can survive on their own merits. To our mind, the Land Rover is best as a bona fide off-roader; the Porsche for a sporty drive, the Volvo for a comfortable cabin and the Audi as the best seven seater.

Evenly matched for price, each vehicle featured here will provide all of the technology and safety systems you need to ensure you get from A-B, whilst avoiding A&E this winter. n 127

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The Grand Tourer

There’s a brand new Bentley Continental GT, and whilst its design is evolutionary, rather than revolutionary, changes under the skin means the old girl remains one of the most luxurious and accomplished cars money can buy...

There’s a brand new Bentley Continental GT and the decision as to whether to put down the likely £150,000 that the car is likely to command is very simple for two reasons. Firstly there’s just one version, with a heavily reworked version of the 6.0 W12 developed with the Volkswagen/Audi group. It cleverly shuts down six of its cylinders to halve the size of the engine under modest driving. Secondly, the new model improves upon an already devastatingly good car. From the front the Continental GT’s design is evolutionary, rather than revolutionary, but there’s a lovely new sweeping rear end.

Inside, there’s a brand new interior that, as well as being packed with technology, has no less than ten square feet of wood veneer, millimetric panel gaps, ‘virtual dials’ plus

Price: £150,000 (est).

Engine: 6.0W12 TSI, 626bhp. Eight speed auto, four wheel drive.

Performance: 0-60mph 3.7 seconds; 207mph top speed.

MPG: 23.2mpg (comb). Equipment: Heated, cooled, massaging seats, leather, cruise.

a central screen that also rotates to reveal three conventional analogue dials. The diamond-stitched hide seats are heated, cooled and provide a massage function. They have 712 stitches and come in a choice of 15 shades. There are 87 paint colours and 15 carpet options plus a choice of eight wood veneers for ultimate customisation.

For all its craftsmanship and hand-build quality, the car is dripping in technology too; four wheel drive, a 48-volt electrical system and an optional Bang & Olufsen or Naim branded audio system which tops out at 2,200 watts and 18 speakers.

The likely asking price, when confirmed, will be hefty, but for the ultimate in quality, technology and performance, the Bentley remains the ultimate sports car for grown ups. n

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1 - Rutland Pride DEC 185 NEW.qxp 27/10/2017 15:59 Page 131

1 - Rutland Pride DEC 185 NEW.qxp 27/10/2017 16:00 Page 132

Rutland Pride December 2017  

For more information call 01529 469977.