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Spring Lambs in Stamford

New life gambolling around the area’s fields

Stamford’s Top Designer... Sophie Allport

This month’s cover designer - and we’ll preview her new spring ranges inside!



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wo news stories you’re guaranteed to read in the newspapers each year - especially the red tops - are ‘the big freeze’ and ‘the big thaw.’ The rest of us know these two stories as ‘winter’ and ‘spring’ respectively but it’s still a novelty for newspaper editors struggling to fill column inches. That’s not to say we’re not very much looking forward to spring with the same bated breath as the rest of the nation. Sure, winter is pretty, but who doesn’t crave new growth, spring flowers, blue skies and slightly more tolerable temperatures? Accordingly, we’re enjoying spring dining at Hambleton Hall, celebrating spring fashions and spring homes & interiors, we’re meeting the gambolling newborn lambs in Launde and we’re enjoying a sneak preview of designer Sophie Allport’s new ranges too.

One editor who’s not struggling to fill column inches is my colleague on our sister magazine, Lincolnshire Pride, which celebrates its 200th edition this month with a bumper edition! My congratulations to the LP team! With best wishes for a great month,

Executive Editor 3


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NEWS A roundup of good news stories from across the area for March. WHAT’S ON Rutland and Stamford’s best events for spring outings.





SPRING LAMBS It’s a sure sign that

better weather is on the way, as spring lambs begin gambolling around.


Leader of Rutland County Council Oliver Hemsley takes us on a tour.

SOPHIE ALLPORT The local designer

talks exclusively to Pride about family life, and her new spring collections.

FOOD & DRINK 56 62

DINING OUT A silver anniversary as

Aaron Patterson celebrates 25 years in the kitchens at Hambleton Hall.

RECIPES Making the most of lamb.


HOMES A country property that’s superbly appointed and on the market for spring.

SPRING INTERIORS Stunning new kitchens and bespoke interior design.

108 GARDENING Making the most of

spring bulbs and a Japanese garden that’s small but perfectly formed.


122 WEDDINGS A romantic, sumptuous 129 138

spring wedding shoot at Belvoir Castle.

FASHION Boden’s spring collections are full of splashes of retro colour.

BEAUTY Spring fresh skincare solutions.

147 THE HIGH LIFE Out and about in the

county enjoying black tie functions at Barnsdale Lodge and Hambleton Hall.

152 MOTORS BMW’s family-friendly X5.

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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 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 our catchment area. Our magazines also have more social media fans than any other local 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 the area, 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 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


Managing Director: Julian Wilkinson. Production Director: Ian Bagley. Sales Director: Zoie Wilkinson. Sales Manager: Charlotte Aiken. Executive Editor: Rob Davis. Editor: Tilly Wilkinson. Customer Care Manager: Mandy Bray. Distribution: Joe Proctor. Office Managers: Sue Bannister and Melissa Trestrail. Aftersales Managers: Hannah Boyle and Carissa Clay. Sales Executives: Cassy Ayton, Emily Brown, Ruth Vinter and James Barnes.

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

Tel: 01529 469977 Fax: 01529 469978 |


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Photographic Competition Winner

TOM CARLILL’S VULCAN REFLECTION TAKES FIRST PLACE IN LOCAL EXHIBITION STAMFORD & RUTLAND The area’s local photographic club, The Stamford and Rutland Photographic Society, this month holds its Member’s Exhibition where it will display members’ work from the past year including the winners of its Print of the Year competition which was held in December. The competition was judged by the industry’s Andrew James, an online photo community member and freelance photography journalist. The winner of the competition was Tom Carlill, who achieved the top prize for his atmospheric image of the reflection of a Vulcan bomber. Other winners included Veronica Watson’s autumn leaves and fruit print, and Sue West’s rainbow over the North Norfolk coast. Members meeting as Pride goes to press will be choosing

their own subject matter in an open competition, and future competition themes designed to test local photographers’ talents include Emotion, Abstract and Dereliction.



New members at the group are always welcome, with any levels of skill. For information on the group and its meeting schedule in 2019 please see

n The Society meets every 3rd Thursday of the month at Great Casterton Church Hall. The group’s Member’s Exhibition at Stamford Arts Centre from March 4th to March 18th.

PETERBOROUGH High Flyers, a brand new prestigious horse show is coming to the area’s East of England Arena and Events Centre in Peterborough this month, promising three full days of competition for top class young horses. The event will include showing and jumping classes, competitions and special performances as well as top quality equestrian trade stands too, from 15th-17th March. “If you are looking for a treat or just keen to browse then the range of exclusive equine and country related shopping

trade stands are just for you, says Betsy Branyan, equine event director. “Many will be new product ranges for the season and will ensure you have the latest styles and trends for the year ahead.” “The show will host a range of competitive showing classes. The classes will offer young horses a sympathetic introduction to the high profile indoor show ring. There will also be brand new championships for Young Sports Horses.” n Taking place on the 15th, 16th & 17th March 2019 at the East of England Arena & Events Centre, Peterborough, for tickets see


OAKHAM We’ve all heard of a fireman’s lift... what about a fireman’s jump start? For one fortunate bride, “Get me to the church on time!” was a wedding day plea answered by the kind-hearted, brave and apparently rather romantic crew of Oakham Fire Station who came to one bride’s rescue when her vintage Rolls Royce wouldn’t start. Members of the service were heading back to base following a job when they

spotted the stranded car on the side of the road, alongside a panicky bride wondering how she’d get to the church on time. Fortunately, with a set of jump leads on hand, the fire crew was able to jump start the car and get the big day back on track, offering their congratulations to the bride along the way. Move over chimney sweeps, - for it seems that fire crews are an even luckier sight for brides on their big day! n

‘Good & New’ Sale 2019


This month sees 140 new ambulances for EMAS...

EAST MIDLANDS March will see the delivery of 140 new emergency vehicles to the East Midlands Ambulance Service, with extra clinical staff promised and an aim to have over 280 new members of staff signed up by the end of 2019. 68 urgent care ambulances have already been put into service, a further 67 will enter service by the end of March and the rest will follow. The introductions represent an £8.7m investment in the fleet, which has over 639 vehicles in total. n

£764,000 Raised

A Fireman’s Lift

LOCAL POLITICIANS in Stamford will help to raise £35,000 with their 2019 Swimathon, an annual event which has raised £764,000 since the first event took place in 1990. Taking part this year will be Deputy Leader of South Kesteven Kelham Cooke, and councillors Helen Goral, Dr Peter Moseley and Nick Robins. n

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EXTON Support a brilliant local charity and sharpen up your wardrobe for spring! The Good & New Sale is back for 2019 and its first night sale with its best picks, and with Champagne and canapés supplied by Hambleton Hall takes place on 1st March from 5pm. The big sale, with many items half price, takes place on 2nd March. The sale takes place at Barnsdale Lodge and supports For Rutland In Rutland whose fundraising work supports two Specialist Advisers who are based at Citizens Advice Rutland to provide free, confidential, non-medical advice to local people of all ages. n



POP-UP CINEMA PLANNED FOR THE COUNTY Children and young people in Rutland are being offered the chance to take part in a brand new community cinema project which aims to screen films at locations around the county in 2019. Rutland County Council is supporting the project, which has received a £300 grant from the not-for-profit organisation Cinema For All – money that is being used to provide special training for young people and screen two films as part of a pop-up cinema experience. “We’re looking to create a team of young film buffs to help us with our new cinema project.” “We need help to choose the films, book screenings, set up and operate the equipment and to promote the screenings,” says the new project’s lead Suzanne White. n Call 01572 758301 for more information.


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Bringing pets and people together...

WOOD GREEN CENTRE HAS PLENTY OF PETS LOOKING FOR A ‘FOREVER HOME’ STAMFORD & RUTLAND The team at Wood Green, The Animals Charity knows that owning a pet is one of the most rewarding things you can do. Giving a pet a loving home, whilst also gaining a new best friend who will bring lots of love to your home. That’s why Wood Green vows to change the lives of pets and their owners bringing them closer together. Whether you are considering having a pet in the future and need guidance on pet choice, or you already have a pet and need some general advice or intensive support, Wood Green offers free pet advice to anyone who needs it. They can help you to find your perfect pet, to understand how best to care for your pet and how to improve pet behaviour and to really improve your relationship with your pet.



Rutland County Council is offering local residents the chance to attend one of four free refresher driving theory courses in March. The courses are designed for qualified drivers who would like to update their knowledge. n 1st, 15th, 18th 22nd March, 10am/1pm, see


In the space of a year, this unique service has helped over 2,000 pet owners and through behaviour advice and support managed to keep over 250 pets and their families to-

gether at a time when they thought giving up their pet was the only option. Wood Green’s dedicated teams are there to listen and give you the help you need.

200 Editions of Pride


n Visit or to contact Wood Green’s pet advisors call 0300 303 9333 ext. 1281 or email the charity via

PRIDE MAGAZINES Congratulations to our sister magazine, Lincolnshire Pride, which publishes its landmark 200th edition this month. Celebrating with a bumper edition of 200 pages, the magazine last year saw the company celebrate its best ever year with an increase in more than sales of £250,000/pa. Similar success and further expansion is anticipated for 2019 and we’re recruiting for new team members to join us during what we believe will be a very successful year! n For more information on Pride Magazines and our career opportunities, see

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The Limes, TinweLL £1,750,000

The Limes is an impressive Grade II listed Georgian home with a distinctive stone façade, walled garden and array of outbuildings. The property still retains much of its period character & charm but offers ample space and opportunity. The current owners have occupied the property for the last 21 years and have sympathetically refurbished throughout to create a welcoming home whose traditional interior features high ceilings, grand entertaining spaces, original features and modern features such as a bespoke kitchen and modern bathrooms. The property also offers the potential to further improve and continue to refurbish the basement and second floor subject to planning.

Tel: +44(0)1780 750200 email:

Tel: +44( 0)1572 335145 email:

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1 TRiCkLebank GaRdens £1,250,000

225 offices across Great britain Plus 75 offices globally

1 Tricklebank Gardens is a well maintained family home, set on a generous plot within walking distance of the town centre. The current owners have maintained the property to a high standard throughout and the interior features spacious and light-filled rooms both downstairs and upstairs which have views over the garden and outdoor swimming pool. The property also benefits from a self-contained one bedroom annex. Situated behind a gated entrance, the house is tucked away and benefits from a large block paved circular driveway and double garage to the front. At the rear is a good sized garden, predominantly laid to lawn with a 40 x 20 feet heated outdoor pool and summer house. This property needs to be viewed to appreciate the quality of accommodation and the proximity to Stamford town centre.

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Church Cottage, Burley on the Hill

The Grange, Langham

A stunning, Grade II listed four bedroom character property, fully renovated with a contemporary extension, offering immaculately presented accommodation and sitting in an elevated position in the sought-after location of Burley on the Hill.

A substantial, five-bedroom, Grade II listed home with a separate twobedroom cottage, mature gardens, outbuildings and stables, sitting at the heart of this popular Rutland village.



Stoke Cottage

York House, Halstead

A unique Arts and Crafts property dating back to the early 20th century, offering over 3,500 square foot of spacious and characterful 6 bedroom accommodation, sitting in grounds of approximately 3.5 acres.

GUIDE PRICE £500,000 - £550,000. A deceptively spacious, four-bedroom, detached village property with ample parking, double garage and purpose-built workshop, mature gardens, a 2-acre paddock and stunning countryside views.

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Barnsdale House, Great Easton

An immaculate and superbly restored Grade II Listed House within one of Leicestershire's most popular villages.

Guide Price £2,000,000




Edward Brassey 01858 438 723


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Guide Price £735,000

A RESIDENTIAL DEVELOPMENT SITE with permitted development approval to convert two traditional barns to a residential use and substantial stone farmhouse for refurbishment, all set within approximately 5.40 acres on the edge of a premium Leicestershire village. There is a range of farm outbuildings present on site. Energy Rating: TBC.




A charming substantial detached character property with a detached Annexe, lovely gardens and outbuildings set in the heart of a sought-after village. The property offers spacious, well-proportioned family accommodation which requires a degree of modernisation and refurbishment. 3 Reception Rooms, Kitchen/Diner, Utility, 5 Bedrooms, 4 Bath-/Shower Rooms; dbl Garage, ample parking. Energy Rating: E.




Stunning semi-detached cottage retaining a wealth of period features, including stone mullioned windows, revealed stonework, exposed timbers and Inglenook fireplaces, and enjoying far-reaching views over the Welland Valley. Sitting Room, Dining Kitchen, Clkrm, 4 dbl Bedrooms, En-suite, Bathroom; Garage, parking, lovely landscaped gardens. Energy Rating: E.






An immaculately presented, detached, three-storey family home built and finished to a high standard and situated in a sought-after village. Sitting Room, Kitchen/Diner, Utility, Cloakroom, 5 Bedrooms, 3 Bath-/Shower Rooms. Off-road parking, walled garden. Energy Rating: B.


Substantial Grade II listed semi-detached 3-storey house with good-size south-facing garden situated on a prestigious historic street in town centre. Retaining a wealth of character, the property benefits from modern gas central heating and partial double glazing. The property is in need of some further modernisation but provides immense potential to create a superb character family home. EPC Exempt.


Offers Over £375,000

Delightful Grade II listed 17th C thatched cottage set on a private plot of approx. 1/3 A with mature gardens, ample parking and barn/store. Retaining an array of character features throughout, the cottage has been recently rethatched and rewired, features new central heating, refitted kitchen and bathroom and offers scope for further renovation and development, STPP. EPC Exempt.

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An exceptional, well equipped, Jacobean country house set in 19 acres • Reception Hall, Cloakroom • 6 Reception Rooms • Kitchen/Breakfast Room, Pantry • Laundry and Utility Rooms, Cellars • Principal Bedroom Suite, 8 Beds, 3 Baths • Attic Rooms, Office/Gym Suite, Dbl Garage

• 3 Bed Coach House, 2 Bedr Cottage • Swimming Pool, Tennis Court, Helipad • Walled Garden, Greenhouses, Stables, Stores • Orchard, Topiary Garden, Ponds, Parterre • Lawns, Paddocks, Riparian Ownership, River Frontage



An exceptional, neoclassical house constructed in 2006 to exacting standards, offering versatile living space, and set within beautifully landscaped gardens. • Sitting Room • Master Suite • Dining Room • Five Further Bedrooms • Study • Family Bathroom • Kitchen/ Breakfast Room • Double Garage • Conservatory • Landscaped Gardens


A Georgian former Rectory set in private landscaped gardens with apartment, stables and pastureland. • 4 Reception Rooms • Stabling, Outbuildings • Kitchen, Office/Playroom • 1 Bedroom Apartment • Utility Room, Boot Room, Cellar • Tennis Court, Paddock • Principal Bedroom with En-suite • Driveway and Garaging • 7 Bedrooms (2 En-suite), Bathroom • In all about 4.2 acres.



A substantial Georgian Grade II listed country residence situated within 7 acres of landscaped gardens, equestrian facilities and paddock. • Reception Hall, Kitchen • Ironing Room, Laundry Room • Dining Room, Drawing Room • Games Room, Wine Store • Snug, Rear Hall, Cloakroom • Boiler Room, Stables • 8 Bedrooms, 3 Bathrooms • Tack Room, Gardens • Play Room, Store/Pantry • Paddock, In all Approx 7 Acres


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–––– The Flagship Collection ––––

2 ST LEONARDS ST, STAMFORD, PE9 2HU £675,000 A stunning four bedroom four storey town house situated in centre of the historic town of Stamford. Boasting a modern concept on a characteristic home, two reception rooms, modern kitchen with integrated appliances, a beautiful orangery, four well balanced bedrooms, two bathrooms and an enclosed rear garden.

GREATFORD OLD HOUSE, MAIN ST, GREATFORD, PE9 4QA £1,500,000 Greatford Old House is a stunning Grade II listed country home situated in the charming village of Greatford. This beautiful home is believed to be dated back to the 16th century with later 17th century additions and 20th century alterations. The current owner has gone through an extensive refurbishment such as a new Collyweston slate roof and a restoration of the beautiful character and period features internally. Greatford Old House is set back of the main road and sits on approximately 3.5 acres of mature lands including a picturesque area of woodland that has a frontage on to the West Glen River.




4 IR ONMONGER STREE T 01780 754530

6 MARKE T STREE T 01572 335005

2 NOR TH STREE T 01778 422567

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Truly Independent Financial Planning • Efficient Portfolio’s Charlie Reading • Author of The Dream Retirement

e End of Year Checks that Could Save You Money Chartered Financial Planner, Charlie Reading, talks about the important steps you should consider at this time of year, which could save you money and give you future financial security.


RE YOU WORRIED that you’re not making the most out of your savings? And are you confident that you are creating sufficient income for the future? Astute investors make use of their tax-free allowances every year, and save thousands of pounds in the process. With the end of the Tax Year just around the corner, it’s a strategy to start thinking about.

savings pot and give you a far greater chance of achieving your goals and living out a comfortable, secure future. Accessing pension benefits is now far more relaxed than it used to be, and as such it is now possible for you to draw as much or as little from your pension as required. Whilst caution should be used when drawing benefits, it allows you to draw an income in line with your requirements, which can be dovetailed in with any other available sources of income. is potentially improves the overall tax efficiency of your income, meaning your retirement funds should last longer.

1. Maximise Your ISA Allowances Spending time with your loved ones or taking part in activities that you are passionate about is the crux of happiness, but if you’re working endless hours, how are you going to do have any free time? e trick is to make your money work harder for you, not work excessively hard for your money. at’s the ultimate goal and is how you will reach financial freedom. So how do you do that? Saving tax, reducing erosion from inflation and increasing growth are key ways to make your money work harder for you, and ISAs are a great starting point. Up until 5th April 2019, you can contribute up to £20,000 into an ISA, and a further £20,000 from 6th April 2019, ergo sheltering up to £40,000 per person (aged over 18). With ISAs, you can place savings into either a Cash ISA or a Stocks & Shares ISA. Whilst Cash ISAs receive tax-free interest and involve less risk, they are likely to produce similar returns to savings accounts, which based on current market rates is likely to be minimal and could see your capital being eroded by inflation. In comparison, a Stocks & Shares ISA can provide the opportunity for growth above inflation (although not guaranteed), providing an uplift to your future ISA pot, therefore making your money work even harder.

3. Speak to an Expert

Accessing pension benefits is now far more relaxed than it used to be, and as such it is now possible for you to draw as much or as little from your pension as required!

Tax-efficient planning can benefit a wide range of people and circumstances, but can sometimes be complex and time-consuming. If you would like to speak one of our Independent Financial Planners, we would be delighted to offer you a free introductory call. Simply call 01572 898060 or email enquiry@efficient to book your call today. n

2. Top Up Your Pension Whilst You Still Can At the time of writing, the current State Pension in the UK is £164.35 a week. Do you think that this sum from the Government will provide you with a sufficient retirement income? Imagine trying to live your desired lifestyle on that amount of money. If you do not save enough for your retirement, that is what is going to end up happening to you. Not only will pensions provide a pivotal role to your future income requirements, they can offer compound growth (the growth on top of your growth) and an abundance of tax benefits, which will bolster your

Charlie Reading created Efficient Portfolio to offer entirely independent financial advice and helping people clarify and realise their dreams and goals through financial planning.

Call 01572 898060, see or visit Portfolian House, 30 Melton Road, Oakham, Rutland, LE15 6AY


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Nothing For Sale… … except an unfair advantage. Garrington don’t sell properties, they exclusively represent buyers. Our East Midlands team source, negotiate and secure properties on behalf of clients including private residences, second homes, plus properties for rental and investment purposes. Let us help you find your perfect place.

For further information contact Kate Vincent Tel: 01780 408377 E mail:

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In the coming weeks the welcome sight of new life will return to our countryside, from bulbs in the garden to leaves on trees and the gambolling of spring lambs across the countryside. There’s nowhere in the area you’re more likely to see skittish lambs at play than in the countryside surrounding Launde Abbey, where Gwilym Owen and his family farm. The Owens reckon that opting for hogget, rather than spring lamb, will yield better farming practices, a better product for consumers, and will ensure the young lambs get to enjoy the countryside a little longer... Proverbially, the best things come to those who wait. That’s certainly true in terms of food production. But the trouble is, as consumers we’re not great at being patient. In fact, we now demand traditionally out-of-season food all year round, and we’re none too patient for food like summer berries, winter game or new season lamb to reach the shelves either.

Part of our impatience is down to keen marketing by UK supermarkets with their powerful supply chains who launch into huge promotions of products like spring lamb. Consumer monoliths like the big four - Tesco, Asda, Sainsburys and Morrisons - have the ability to dramatically shorten the time it takes to get livestock from field to fork. But is that always a good thing? Rutland farmer Gwilym Owen and his family don’t necessarily believe so. In fact, when it comes to lamb, the family believes that slower can be better, and as an additional happy consequence to their slower-food philosophy, we get to see happy lambs gambolling around our countryside for a little longer too. >> Main Image: Two of Gareth and Gwilym Owen’s flock. The family are third generation farmers working around Rutland’s Launde Abbey - now a Christian retreat - to create lamb in an all-year-round operation. The farmers caution canny consumers that old season lamb may yield a better-farmed product for Sunday roasts this easter.

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“The farm has 2,000 lambing ewes, an Aberfield commercial cross flock yielding an anticipated 3,200 lambs each year...”

>> Slowing things down somewhat, the Owen family have been farming for three generations and arrived at Launde’s Hill Farm 26 years ago. Sitting atop a hill overlooking Launde Abbey and the Chater Valley, their operation is a true family business. Gwilym and wife Alex head up the butchery operation which supplies around 20 local restaurants - including Hambleton Hall and Lyddington’s Marquess of Exeter - with lamb as well as servicing local farmers’ markets in order to sell their meat straight to the public too. Gareth and Hannah Owen, meanwhile, are responsible for the farming side of the business and look after 800 acres of farmland predominantly used for grazing sheep and growing the farm’s own silage.

“There’s a good deal of excitement around spring lamb. Especially around Easter it’s a seasonal treat,” says Gwilym.

“But a good deal of the excitement around spring lamb is just marketing. In fact, good quality lamb can be enjoyed the whole year round, especially in a farming system such

Right: The family farm in the valleys and hills around Launde Abbey. Alex heads up the farm’s operation whilst Gwilym (pictured) heads up the butchery.


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as ours, where high standards of husbandry results in a happier, more ethically-farmed animals and where the operation is slowed down to provide a ‘better-farmed’ product.” As Pride goes to press, it’ll be time to get the kettle on and make a good strong flask of tea. The farm has 2,000 lambing ewes, an Aberfield commercial cross breed all finished as fat lambs and output to yield about 26,000kg of meat in total - so that’s about 10,000 joints of lamb each year. The farm’s ewes are traditionally tupped in October rather than using AI. So, from the last week of March for about a month, and with aims to achieve two lambs from each ewe - 1.7 is the statistical average - the farm hopes to see over 3,200 lambs joining the flock this season.

That means Gwilym and his family including the couple’s daughters Teagan and Eira - help out Gareth and the farm’s full-time shepherd and night shepherd. Whilst it’s undoubtedly hard work, and chilly, too, there’s no disputing the pleasure of watching new life come into the world. After a few hours of mummy time, each lamb and ewe are moved to their own nursery pen where they’ll spend a day or so together until the family can be sure the lamb is feeding properly, before being turned out into the fresh spring air to enjoy the freedom and the views over open countryside that any farmer would desire for their livestock.

From that point on, the lambs can enjoy being on grass or the farm’s own silage with just the minimum of Total Mixed Ration feeds. “Whilst some intensive farming operations can see an animal go from field to fork in just 48 hours, and whilst ‘spring lamb’ sounds nice in marketing, my own preference is a slower farming operation,” says Gwilym. “Space in larger, modern butchery operations can mean limited opportunities to hang meat in order to let it develop its flavour, and artificially finished young lambs sent off early in their life cycle don’t have the happy life that our lambs enjoy.”

“Both our new season lambs later in the year and last season’s lamb - hogget - are returned to us in carcass form and are hung on site for up to two weeks to develop 27

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>> a really dark red colour and maximum flavour before being butchered and sent off to our customers.”

“We’re absolutely delighted to be achieving pride of place on the menus of many of the county’s best restaurants, but we’ve been cautious about growing the business too quickly,” says Gwilym. “We think we’ve a really special product with the scale of operation we have now, one which enables us to make sure the highest standards of animal husbandry and skilled butchery goes hand-in-hand to produce ethically farmed, traceable meat that ensures our animals are very well looked after and enjoy a good life.” “This year - indeed this month - has the potential to change UK farming. It’s possible that Brexit will encourage us to look to our own farms and suppliers to feed ourselves. If so, we’d like to think that operations like ours can flourish, and that consumers will become more open to choosing high-welfare local produce and to supporting local butchers and other food producers.”

“We’re well-supported in the area and we have great family butchers like Nelsons and Leesons, as well as really talented chefs who care about the food they serve to customers and who really want to make the most of local ingredients. That’s why we’ve listened carefully to the restaurants we supply and why we work with them to ensure that you can have the same quality produce in your own home as in the area’s best local dining rooms.”

“And best of all, with a local supplier like us - and with not just spring lamb but hogget on your shopping list - you can be assured that you’re enjoying a product which has led a happy life but also a longer one too.”

n Gwilym and Alex of Launde Farm Foods can be found at Oakham Farmer Market, Oundle Farmer’s Market and at Burghley House’s Fine Food Markets. See 28

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From park life to


It’s funny how the most innocent remark can change your life. Oliver Hemsley made a throwaway remark about local politics to a friend, who suggested that if he couldn’t beat ‘em, he should join ‘em! In four short years, the Langham councillor found himself not just joining them, but indeed, leading them too! Words & Images: Rob Davis.

Are we all sick of hearing about Brexit yet? Possibly. It’s certainly been a period of great uncertainty for the country as a whole. But whilst grumbling about politics is a keenly observed British pastime, it’s important to remember that anyone can complain. Taking action, wrestling with tighter budgets, making resources stretch and keeping an eye on not just the ‘here and now,’ but the future too is something that’s rather trickier, albeit very rewarding. That’s certainly the lesson that Rutland County Council Leader Oliver Hemsley has discovered in his short but sweet career in local government thus far. It was just over four years ago that Oliver was sitting on a park bench talking to then local Councillor Richard Clifton. The latter’s response was simple; stop moaning and join the council to start doing something positive. And that’s just what he did. How long have you lived in the area?

I’m teased a bit by some more established Rutlanders that you have to be here for 60 years to claim native status. In fact I’ve been here for 58 years. I was schooled in Oakham when I was younger before boarding in Berkshire and Dorset, and spent a couple of years in London studying for a degree in Business Management and Printing, then I took a year out before returning to the county in 1983. Tell us about your career?

My father was a farmer - on an arable farm - then a civil engineer, so he was very practical. I worked on the farm growing up and was also put to good use decorating and gardening.

I started my own business, Paint It & Plant It, which is still going strong after 36 years. The team reached about 10 full time employees and I reckon I’ve employed over 170 people during my career. At its peak I was walking about 60 miles a week behind a mower. The business has gradually had to take a bit of a back seat with my relatively recent career in politics, and I’m sad to have scaled it back, but moving on means I can concentrate on other things, like improving Rutland for its 40,000 residents.

I became a ward councillor for Langham in May 2015 and joined the cabinet in 2016, serving as deputy leader under Tony Mathias a year later. We were all very sad when Roger Begy died in 2016 and when Terry King stepped down in January 2017. 32

I didn’t join to step into the role of council leader and it was a scary step, to do so. But I work with a great team, I’ve always been inclined to roll my sleeves up and I value those around me who all work with a real common sense approach to help to improve Rutland for all of its residents. What makes Rutland unique for you?

It’s the deep sense of pride that people have for the county. Being a farmer you’re just a caretaker, looking after the land for future generations. Being a gardener it’s also nice to look after green spaces for future generations and when you become involved in local politics - certainly in Rutland - you’re responsible for a county that people have a great deal of reverence for. In Rutland the whole community looks out for one another. It’s a safe, inclusive and conservational place to live. You walk down the High Street, smile at people and they smile back.

I don’t know if the sense of community is down to the diminutive size of the county, or because we’re keen to preserve our own identity against larger counties like Leicestershire or Lincolnshire, but for whatever reason, we’re all protective of it and that’s why working in local politics in our area isn’t something you can do without a profound respect for the area and a real desire to look after the county. Who inspires you around Rutland?

As someone ‘on the inside’ - and someone who loves introducing people to the sometimes hidden delights of the county - I’m really inspired by the work that Discover Rutland does. The group is really working hard to bring us together and has been great at encouraging us to appreciate what we have within the county, but also to increase our appeal as a place for those from out of the area to enjoy too. What’s Rutland like in spring and where should we visit?

We’ll enjoy our family walk around Clipsham’s Bluebell Woods later this month. That officially marks the start of spring for us! Also, I love dinghies these days I’m more into sailing and windsurfing, so as soon as the temperatures increase a little, you’ll find me on Rutland Water. I can also recommend a walk around the Exton Estate. >>

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“Rutland has lots of really good establishments for everything from relaxed quality pub dining to more formal meals out...” >> Fort Henry is an impressive folly that’s always worth a look. And Oakham Castle, too, I think is always impressive. It’s easy to overlook the attractions which are right on your doorstep, so a visit there is a must. As a gardener I also really appreciate Barnsdale Gardens. It’s beautifully kept by the Hamilton family and really inspiring for gardeners, although I do take more pleasure in actually working in a garden than just admiring them! Where do you take friends to eat and drink around Rutland?

Rutland has lots of really good establishments for everything from relaxed quality pub dining to more formal meals out. My local is Langham’s Wheatsheaf, but even when we’re in the centre of Oakham there are so many really good places to stop for a coffee or lunch with the family.

When we have friends over we’ve enjoyed Barnsdale Lodge before and if we’ve visitors from out of the area Oakham now has a wonderfully renovated coaching inn in the form of the Wisteria Hotel. Like many businesses in Rutland, it’s independently owned and offers a really warm welcome. Which shops and businesses would you recommend to a visitor?

There are so many really good independent businesses and we’re really lucky to have recognised the value of looking after those businesses in Oakham and Uppingham at a time when independent retailers in other market towns are perhaps not faring as well. I think one of the nicest aspects of both our market towns are the opportunities they offer visitors to explore them. There’s are lots of nice surprises to discover in both towns. What are the best views by day and night?

One of my favourite walks and one of the most satisfying views in Rutland is the view from Brook Hill. I also love the view at Preston from Uppingham back towards Oakham. Because the county has lots of hills and undulations there are some really lovely vantage points for rolling scenery around the county. I really enjoy photography and have taken a few nice shots on my travels around the county. One I was really proud of until one of my keen photographer friends kindly gave me a print of one of his images... it was quite incredible but did make me feel a bit sheepish in comparison! I think the best advice I can give anyone looking for a great view, though, is to look up. The area is full of buildings with real presence. You can see the architecture changing from limestone to ironstone as you travel between Oakham and Uppingham, and it’s only when you look up that you come to realise the range and quality of architecture in the area.

What about nature or a quiet place to escape to?

It’s about people - not spaces - for me. Besides gardens are places for me to work in, so I’m not very good at just relaxing in green spaces. I’ll make an exception though, with my own garden. It’s best described as natural looking, not perfectly manicured, and I like it that way. I’ve a very comfortable hammock so in the spring and summer months I’m looking forward to just enjoying my own space.

Above: Oliver photographed this image of Rutland Water at dawn.

Would you change anything about Rutland?

I think it would be remiss of me as leader of the council to suggest that we should ever stop trying to improve the county and just be satisfied with what we already have.

Change is often sensitive and can make people nervous, but it also represents a great opportunity for the area too. There was a good deal of caution about whether it was the right decision to create Rutland Water back in the 1970s.

Change isn’t necessarily a problem as long as it’s responsibly approached and managed. The county has to remain sustainable for its residents and for the businesses based in the area in the future. At the moment there’s a significant buzz about the opportunity to turn St George’s Barracks into a new community. Some local residents are against it, but I believe we can create a new community which is in keeping with Rutland’s unique and special character, supported by all the necessary infrastructure improvements. n

Opposite/Top: Oliver loves living in Langham with its strong community ethos. Shown here is the village’s St Peter & St Paul. One of the family’s favourite walking spots is the Exton Estate with its Fort Henry folly. Opposite/Centre: As a keen gardener Oliver enjoys the odd trip to Barnsdale Gardens, where Nick Hamilton was last year awarded Best Garden 2018/2019 by Garden News. Also shown here the council’s offices and watersports at Rutland Water - another passion for Oliver. Opposite/Bottom: Oliver says his favourite Rutland views is that of Brook Hill looking back towards Oakham.


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How to Spend a Day in: Oakham... Favourite Landmark

Oakham Castle and All Saints Church It’s easy to overlook what’s right there on your doorstep. But Oakham Castle is a fine example of Norman architecture, benefitting from improved facilities and a £2.1m refurbishment in 2016.

Favourite Shops

Mill Street When most market towns’ urban centres are in the doldrums, Oakham is thriving thanks to independent retailers such as those on Mill Street. Stars of the street include clothing, home and pure beauty retailer Cavells, homeware retailer Elizabeth Stanhope and delicatessen Otters.;

Favourite Hotel

Clockwise from top: Oakham’s All Saints Church, Mill Street and spring accommodation and dining at The Wisteria Hotel.


Wisteria Hotel, Catmos Street If you’ve friends stopping over in Rutland, and your spare room is already spoken for, we recommend The Wisteria Inn. Recently refurbished, 25 rooms and independently owned.

Words: Rob Davis.

Favourite for Food

Wisteria Hotel & Barnsdale Lodge We can also recommend the Wisteria Hotel for dining. If you’re willing to travel five minutes out of the town though, Barnsdale Lodge is also worth a visit for an excellent afternoon tea and high-quality dining during lunchtime and evening service. For formal dining, Hambleton Hall is a huge treat it’s profiled later in this edition!,

Favourite Attraction

Rutland Farm Park Rutland Farm Park is a small 18-acre working farm just off Uppingham Road. Open all year round, great for families. A little further out of the town, Barnsdale Gardens is also worth a visit with its 38 individual gardens, created by Geoff Hamilton.

Favourite for Culture

Trent Galleries, Mill Street An art gallery that enjoys the very best up and coming national and international talent, making art approachable. n

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Interior Design Making Up Reupholstery Fabric In Stock

Live beautifully 17a and 27 Mill St Oakham Rutland LE15 6EA 01572 722 345


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“Don’t Panic...!” Deal with making tax digital! To make tax less taxing, the industry is going digital. Barnstone here is a whizz with computers and can help manage the transition for you. 1st April is the deadline, so get in touch now!

Payroll, bookkeeping, accountancy, tax services and business advice for individuals, sole traders or companies We’re human (well, apart from Barnstone here), so we promise to talk to you like a human, you know, in a jargon-free, no waffle way! We’re available during evenings and weekends too, and promise to respond to a client’s queries within 24 hours. We’re the approachable accountants that make your life easier... so give us a call!


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ALLPORT Words: Rob Davis

You have a favourite tea towel, right? Everyone has a favourite tea towel. I certainly have a favourite tea towel. It’s a Sophie Allport one, from the Stamford based designer’s Pheasant Collection. Not just because it’s a great looking product. Nor because it’s commensurate with the look and feel of the countryside in this part of the world. Rather, it’s a favourite of mine because it’s such a high quality product. Our kitchen is routinely a place where cookware, utensils and linens come to die. And yet, despite the best efforts of the present Mrs Davis to stain, shred, immolate and extirpate this fine example of kitchen linenhood, still it soldiers on.

Like a 45cm x 65cm Royal Marine - or an SAS soldier hewn from 100% cotton - it survives culinary disaster after boil wash after near miss with a gas hob and comes back for more every time, retaining its colour, its absorbency and remaining free of holes, frays and other battle scars.

Sophie herself insists on quality, and it’s not surprising given that her expectations are the same as ours; a product that will survive family life. Each year Sophie launches about ten new ranges - five for spring/summer, five for autumn/winter - give or take a range or two. So, when we were invited for a preview of the designer’s spring 2019 designs we couldn’t resist a look... especially as this year will offer some exciting new developments for the Bourne business, which moved into new premises around a year ago. You’re an international business, but still very much based in the area?

Yes. I was raised in Potterhanworth - a little village in Lincolnshire - and attended Lincoln Minster School before moving to pursue a Graphic Art & Design degree at Leeds Metropolitan University. I left in 1994 and moved to London where I met my husband Chris. And you began your career as a freelance illustrator?

I loved to paint and would take on the odd commission to fund my way through university. I even sat on pavements in central London

sketching and selling the odd piece to tourists. That was in-between trying to get my work in front of illustrative agents and publishing companies. I had a friend who worked at the Country Living Show and in 1996, she asked me to be a demonstrator. I produced a few cards to sell at the show and it all began from there. Eventually they were selling before I’d even produced them, and I was picking up work in advertising. One of my most memorable early commissions was for Harrods and they used my illustrations in their window displays. Working from the spare room of my London home I began producing a few mug and card designs of my own, as well as for royalties. But it was a family tragedy that was the turning point?

In 2004 my father suffered a stroke. We’re a close family and it felt like our world came tumbling down. My brother Jem and I were devastated. It acted as a catalyst to set up our family business and Sophie Allport Limited was born. That was when was Sophie Allport was founded?

Yes, in 2007. And then the world... just... exploded! I’m still the creative element behind the business and Jem is happy to be behind the scenes but honestly, he’s terrific and I can’t sing his praises enough. His role in the finances, logistics, sales and distribution of our ranges enables me to just concentrate on what I love... creating beautiful products. How difficult is it to grow the business?

The popularity of our ranges has helped to grow the business naturally and steadily. What has been more of a challenge, though, is to keep the family feel of the business intact, to remain true to our core values. And also, to produce volume without sacrificing quality.

It wouldn’t sit comfortably with us, for example, if we produced products featuring animal motifs without enfranchising ourselves in the protection of the natural world. >> 41

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“I timetable in opportunities to go home and paint at the kitchen table in front of the wood burner with the dogs at my feet. It’s still the way our ranges are designed!” >> That’s why we’re exploring alternatives to leather for our new bags and pet products, and why ranges like our Cheetah and Elephant collections - inspired by our childhood holiday to Africa - include a donation to the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) with each sale. Likewise, our Woodland collection was produced in collaboration with the National Trust with financial support to help them to support their ongoing conservation projects. We’re mindful of recycling too, and that it’s better for the environment and for our customers to make products which are made to last, rather than being designed as disposable items. How large is Sophie Allport as a company?

In October 2017 we had to move from our old premises where eight small individual warehouses were causing a real logistical headache. We moved to a former brewery in Bourne which provided 35,000sq ft of consolidated space.

We moved just before Christmas which was a real nightmare at the busiest time of year for us, but it was necessary to ensure we could work efficiently. We’ve 60 members of staff now, with six creatives in our design studio and over 40 ranges. Each range has between 70 and 120 different products - so there are about 3,000 different lines across the company.

We have over 1,300 stockists which makes us proud, but not as proud as the knowledge that we’re retaining our family culture in the company. We host a Tuesday morning meeting for the whole company and everyone is included. That’s because no department works in isolation, everyone is enfranchised; we’re a complete team. But despite the company’s growth, you still design in the same way?

Yes! I have to ensure my time is well-spent, but I timetable in opportunities for me to go home and sit in front of the wood burner with the dogs at my feet and a mug of coffee. That’s still the way our ranges are designed. I love the process; it’s like the cream on top of the milk in an already really enjoyable role.

I bring my designs in and they gradually evolve into a finished piece created in pen and watercolours which are digitised onto the computer and composited. The whiteware - our mugs and so on are then hand-finished in Stoke-on-Trent which is fiddly but gives them a quality finish. >> 42

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We’re still a small enough company that the dogs or children you see in our photography are members of our family or those of our friends. We love our dogs, and that’s why we’ve made sure that our dog leads will last a lifetime, and that they’re as comfortable as possible...

>> Have you tried your hand at that?

Oh yes... it was so difficult, it takes real skill to get the finished product perfect. I’ve tonnes of respect for the steady hands who can produce perfect products over and over again, I was all fingers and thumbs! Is hand-finishing necessary for quality?

Definitely. Many products are mass-produced now, and it would be easy to scrimp on things like materials, but I’m a mum and a wife myself, so I know how well a mug has to be made in order to stand up to breakfast each morning; to endless dishwasher cycles and the occasional knock or tumble. Likewise, the quality of our cottons and laminated oilcloths and our canvas bags are such that they’re designed to be used first and to look great thereafter. What are your newest products?

Brand new and in shops by the end of February, we’re launching a range of dog toys, leads and beds. We’ve two labradors - a black lab called Mabel and a fox red lab called Florrie - who have tested them to the point that other products would have been destroyed.

Again, we’re still a small enough company that the dogs or children you see in our images are members of our family or those of our friends. We love our dogs. They’re a part of the family, so we’ve made sure that our dog leads will last a lifetime, with a neoprene-like rubber on the inside of the collars to ensure they’re as comfortable as possible too. What other ranges are you launching this spring?

We’ve five adorable new collections. My favourite is Peony. They’re easily my favourite flowers and I really miss gardening throughout the winter months, so it was a bit of a treat to myself to remind myself of spring and to produce a range with voluminous floral motifs and magnificent swirls of pink and white.

Dragonfly is a collection on a dark blue background. I think we’re moving away from beiges and taupe backgrounds and back towards some strong colours, so I really like the collection’s deep dramatic backgrounds. There’s also a unicorn collection which is designed for little girls who love rainbows and pretty things!

The two final ranges we’re really looking forward to launching, though, are Speedy Dogs (whippets, greyhounds and lurchers) - and Spaniels (springers, cocker spaniels and King Charles spaniels).

Are you inundated with suggestions for new subjects to paint?

Absolutely. We receive so many requests and pictures of people’s pets. I can’t just create collections with animals I’ve no connection to though. Spaniels was inspired by a neighbour’s King Charles puppy I used to walk as a girl. We didn’t have dogs when we were young and I doted on this puppy. Do you design for a particular market?

Never. I don’t paint to satisfy a market, I only ever use what I like as a barometer and gauge the team’s opinion. I’ve gained experience only through listening and improving, and you gain a gut feel for what will work not just in general terms but within each range as well.

Certain ranges suit certain products too, so we’re anticipating the pet products line will be really popular in our two new dog-themed ranges. Are you expanding the number of products within each range?

For the first time we’re launching a range of hand washes and hand lotions, which will be sold exclusively through Waitrose, from our own website and in our Stamford shop.

We’ve also started to produce our own jumpers with simple motifs on the back and bags in a manmade leather substitute with blocks of bolder colour like mustard yellow and coral. Our most popular products are mugs, tea towels, oven gloves and aprons, but we’ve diversified a great deal with each range we’ve produced. >> 45

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>> Which ranges are the most popular?

It changes from season to season, but we created Bees 10 years ago and that has remained a best seller. Hare and Flamingo are very popular, but in the winter months Highland Stag and Pheasant are really popular too. And there’s another new arrival this month?

Hopefully. We’ve created a beautiful range to celebrate the birth of the Duke & Duchess of Sussex’s first child. It’s a lovely design with teddies and little footprints! The birth of a royal baby is always something the whole country can celebrate. Which of your own products couldn’t you live without?

I can’t fall asleep without wearing an eye mask! They’re a bit Marmite - you either love them or hate them, but as someone who can only sleep in total darkness it’s a comfort thing; very much my must-have product!

I’m also delighted to be putting our pet ranges to the test and even I’ve been surprised by just how much rough treatment they’ll stand up to. Mable is renowned as a destroyer of dog toys, yet our new ones stand up well, with a squeak built into them plus a rope through them too so your dogs can play tug-of-war with each other. What other changes will you be making in 2019?

Having moved to our new premises last year we finally have the warehousing space and office space we need for the scale of business we’ve reached.

But the other reason for relocating was to create a new showroom here to show off as many products as possible both for our retail but also our trade customers. But not until after the winter rush?

You’re visiting us just before Christmas - definitely our busiest time! Even after this season there’s no respite, either. We work around a year in advance so just as this article is published, we’ll be taking orders and showing products off for Christmas 2019! Presumably you’re a keen cook too?

I do love cooking but nothing too elaborate. I’m a wife and mum to boys who are all rugby and cricket mad, so Sunday roasts are a family ritual. We have a lot of casseroles and stews in the winter too.

Above: Pride’s Editor Rob Davis met Stamford designer Sophie at her local headquarters.


Warm puddings are a must, too. My signature puds or desserts are a chocolate bread ‘n’ butter pudding and when it’s warmer, Nutella tiramisu, which the whole family adores. Everyone knows your name, but do you still have a bit of anonymity in this part of the world?

My name is better known than my face. I was amused on a trip to Stamford once when I took my purse out of my bag and a lady commented how nice it was. I politely acknowledged the compliment and blushed with pride inside because she obviously didn’t know that I was the designer!

I’m quite glad to remain anonymous though. I think I’d find it rather disconcerting if I was recognised everywhere I went, and the reward for me isn’t celebrity, it’s simply the fact that so many people love our products and designs, and enjoying having them in their home and using them every day. n Based in Bourne with a retail boutique on High Street, Stamford, Sophie Allport is a designer of products for the home and for families. Her new ranges are Peony, Dragonfly, Unicorn, Speedy Dogs and Spaniels which will appear in store, at retailers and on as Pride goes to press. For product information call 01780 751044.

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What’s On... STAMFORD


thursday 7th march

wednesday 6th march

the Band of the royal air force with stamford endowed schools

wildlife Book cluB

If you love reading and wildlife, Rutland Water Nature Reserve’s Wildlife Book Club is looking for you! The group meets once a month to share thoughts and comments on current popular natural history reads. The group say they don’t take themselves too seriously but simply choose a title or two to discuss each month and get together to share our opinions on the books and usually end up chatting about all sorts of related topics too! All the books on our list come highly recommended and have a wildlife and/or wild places theme so it’s a great way to meet new friends who share your interests and learn more about natural history and nature conservation.

A fundraising event for our local Air Ambulance and Military Charities. The Band of the Royal Air Force will delight the audience with a rousing fundraising concert joined by the Stamford Endowed Schools musical students. Recommended donation of £5/person.

n Stamford Corn Exchange, Broad Street PE9 1PX. From 6.30pm. 01780 766455 or see OAKHAM

saturday 16th march

song and dance!

n 11am-12 noon. Volunteer Centre, call 01572 720049 or for more information see

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin



saturday 13th april saturday 20th april

captain corelli’s mandolin

Based on the best-selling novel by Louis de Bernières that inspired the hit film, Captain Corelli’s Mandolin makes its world premiere across the UK in 2019. Set on the Greek island of Cephallonia, this is an unforgettable love story which evolves against the turbulent backdrop of World War II. Marking the 25th Anniversary of the novel’s original publication, this epic journey is brought vividly to life for the stage by director Melly Still. n Tickets £10-£28, from 2.15pm/7.30pm. Curve Theatre, Rutland Street Leicester, LE1 1SB 0116 2423595,


Dance-inspired music from ballet, theatre and musicals contrasts with songs from the stage and concert hall sung by local soprano Caroline Trutz. Conducted by David Calow and featuring Rutland Sinfonia, featuring pieces by Puccini, Shostakovich, Dèlibes and Bernstein.

n Oakham School Chapel, from 7.30pm, tickets £14 (£12/conc), 01832 274734 or from Oakham Wines, Market Place. STAMFORD

saturday 16th march - monday 15th april

Burghley house south gardens

The Private South Gardens offer magnificent seasonal displays of Narcissi and spring bulbs and give an injection of formality into ‘Capability’ Brown’s sweeping vistas. Open from 11am to 4pm throughout spring see website for house openings too.


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friday 8th march friday 22nd march

stamford and rutland photo society

spring flower fortnight at Barnsdale

Come and enjoy a display by this local photographic society with images from a large range of members. New members are always welcome!



saturday 9th march


Few other ensembles can match the range of Fretwork’s repertory, spanning as it does the first printed music of 1501 from Venice to contemporary music commissioned by the group. Their recordings of arrangements of J. S. Bach have won particular praise, but they have recently issued a disc containing music by beloved composers like Grieg,

Debussy, Shostakovitch, Warlock and Britten.

Formed in 1986, the group’s consistently high standards mean they have managed to bring music old and new to audiences hitherto unfamiliar with the inspiring sound-world of the viol. The group’s sound is described by Classic FM as “All that one could wish for!”

n Tickets £18, Stamford Arts Centre, from 7.30pm. Call 01780 763203 or see

Spring has sprung at Rutland Farm Park...



tuesday 5th march sunday 17th march


thursday 14th friday 15th march

Black comedy

Presented to you by Uppingham School’s West Bank House comes this one-act farce by Peter Schaffer, first performed in 1965. Enjoy this frantic romp with mistaken identities, and surprises lurking in every dark corner! n Tickets £8.50, from 7.30pm. Uppingham Theatre, LE15 9UD. Call 01572 820820 or visit


open all year

rutland farm park

All creatures great in a county that’s small. Rutland Farm Park is the perfect place to visit this month. Set in 19 acres, this traditionally run farm specialises in conserving rare breeds and helps to educate children about where their food comes from, as well as providing a great family day out. Rutland Farm Park has been in the Ball family for over five generations. Children of all ages can meet and learn all about the whole range of farm

Explore Barnsdale at this exciting time of year as everything starts to burst into life; along with all the fresh new foliage and drifts of spring flowers throughout the gardens. You’ll be able to enjoy the new Geoff Hamilton Winter Border at its very best. Then visit the tea room for a warming drink and slice of cake, lunch or afternoon tea... or browse the plant nursery and shop. n The Avenue, Exton LE15 8AH. Call 01572 813200 or see

animals. They will be able to meet its lambs, goats and sheep and play with the fluffy rabbits and guinea pigs in Amy’s Farm Corner. Visitors are able to walk through the farm’s free-range bird pen, feed the birds, and get to collect the hens’ eggs. Younger visitors will delight too in being able to see spring lambs, groom a pony, feed the cows in the winter, play on the ride-on tractors and play in the farm’s brand-new play area. n Catmose Farm, Uppingham Road, Oakham LE15 6JD. Call 01572 722122 or see 51

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Through the Living Years


saturday 8th march

mike & the mechanics

Mike & The Mechanics - who have sold over ten million records worldwide - appear in Leicester this month as part of their 2019 nationwide Looking Back Over My Shoulder Tour. It’s an epic run of 34 UK concerts in February, March and April, including the prestigious Royal Albert Hall. Mike & The Mechanics are Genesis founding member Mike Rutherford (guitar) - one of the UK’s most prolific R&B singers, Andrew Roachford - lead and

backing vocals - (whose previous hits include Cuddly Tour and Family Man) and Canadian-born singer, Tim Howar - lead and backing vocals - who formed and toured with his band Vantramp, with the likes of Rod Stewart and Paulo Nutini. Tim shares vocal duties with Roachford and they both add a new soulful dimension to the band’s already established sound. Following on from their recent sold-out tour in the US, the Looking Back Over My Shoulder Tour in 2019, will include tracks from their highly acclaimed latest album Let Me Fly. Also included will be their massive 80s hit single

The Living Years which became a number one hit in the US. The single then went onto become a global success. Their other classic hits will include Silent Running, All I Need Is A Miracle, Word Of Mouth, Another Cup of Coffee and the unforgettable Over My Shoulder. Formed in 1985, the band included Rutherford, vocalists Paul Carrack and Paul Young before Rutherford created the current lineup in 2010. The band was nominated for Grammy awards in 1987 and 1990.

n Tickets £34 - £41.50 at DeMontfort Hall, Leicester LE1 7RU. Call 0116 233 3111 or see


sunday 3rd & sunday 10th march

the rat pack

After performing to sell-out audiences in the Orangery for the past three years, Kilworth House says it’s a delight to welcome back some of the world’s finest interpreters of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin and Sammy Davis Jr. With a new show for spring, ‘The Boys’ will swing you back to a time when The Rat Pack ruled Las Vegas and Hollywood where their impromptu sell out shows caused a stir and attracted the rich and famous! The demand for this fabulous show is equally overwhelming and will sell out very fast indeed, so book early. Based in the Orangery of Kilworth House, includes welcome drink, three course dinner plus coffee & petit fours. n £65/person, 01858 881939 or see kilworthhouse


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Join us for a fun day on the farm... TRADITIONALLY RUN FAMILY FARM SPECIALISING IN CONSERVING RARE BREEDS • ToTs on Tuesday ( term time only ) 10% off admission for mums and pre-school children, lunch time deals, feed and cuddle the animals. • February halF Term we have craft activities and cuddle the animal sessions on Tue 19, Wed 20, Thur 21, Fri 22 – 11.00 - 3.30. • easTer Weekend we will be hosting an easter egg hunt and easter Crafts • seT in 19 aCres of farm land within the town boundary of oakham. Traditionally run family farm specialising in conserving rare breeds. Purchase food to feed the goats, sheep and the alpacas. • ouTdoor Play area for the children. • daPhne's Tea room serving hot and cold light meals, cakes, snacks, drinks, ice creams and gift shop.

OPEN: Tues - Sun 10.00 - 4.00 FREE PARKIN G

Under Under33Free, Free,3-12 3-12years years£5.00, £5.00,13+ 13+£6.00, £6.00,Family Familyticket ticket£18 £18

RUTLAND FARM PARK Uppingham Rd, Oakham LE15 6JD 01572 722122 •






Also: Private Pilot’s License, Commercial Licenses Dedicated Hour Building and Advanced Training...

07860 268462 or 07867 608954 |

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Exceptional Dining at HAMBLETON HALL

Silver service and a silver anniversary in 2019, as Hambleton Hall celebrates a quarter of a century since Aaron Patterson arrived at Hambleton Hall to set a precedent of peerless gastronomy at Tim & Stefa Hart’s country house hotel, located on the reservoir’s peninsular... Words & Images: Rob Davis.

I’ve a little anecdote about Hambleton Hall that I’d like to share as a sort of preface to this month’s dining out recommendation. On New Year’s Eve I stopped by at Hambleton Hall to photograph guests at the hotel’s black tie function. One guest was joined by her two well-behaved and wellheeled terriers who were being chaperoned from their room to the guest’s car prior to the commencement of the night’s champagne and canapé reception.

A little later the guest was in the drawing room and remarked to her companions that “Chris [Hurst, general manager] always recognises us but he always remembers the dogs’ names too... it’s the little things, isn’t it?”


EXECUTIVE HEAD CHEF known as front of house, and instead just focus on the food. But it’s an aspect of a guest’s overall experience that Hambleton always gets right.

It certainly is when you function at the level of Hambleton Hall; even more so when you’ve had nearly 40 years setting a precedent for comfortable luxury. In assessing a restaurant, it’s easy to overlook the importance of the guest’s experience, more commonly

Chris and the rest of the team, including restaurant director Graeme Matheson and sommelier Dominique Baduel are gifted when it comes to anticipating and fulfilling a guests’ every whim with keen attention to detail but also a relaxed and friendly manner that ensures Hambleton Hall, for its posh feel is never too stiff or intimidating, just... very pleasant.


Dogs aren’t permitted in communal areas, which means that the dining room is of course off-limits. I’d be a bit glum if I were >>

This means guests are able to enjoy the hotel’s exceptional dining, courtesy of Aaron Patterson in absolute comfort.

Hambleton Hall’s Aaron Patterson has served as Head Chef of Hambleton Hall for 25 years, and has helped the hotel to retain its Michelin Star throughout his tenure. The hotel’s dining room has four AA rosettes, and has been recognised in The Good Food Guide and in Hardens, as well as winning numerous awards in Pride’s Restaurant of the Year awards. n


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>> them, missing out on Aaron’s super six course New Year’s Eve menu, which included a chicken liver & foie gras parfait, crab raviolo and loin of fallow venison. Their loss. No matter when you choose to dine though, Aaron Patterson and his brigade have ensured that Hambleton Hall has remained at the forefront of gastronomy since his arrival 25 years ago this year.

Tim and Stefa purchased the hotel in 1979 and by 1982, the hotel had gained a Michelin star. It’s an accolade the dining room has retained ever since, and Aaron wonders

OPEN FOR FOOD Lunchtime Service: Monday to Saturday 12noon - 2.30pm.

Evening Service: Monday to Saturday 7.00pm - 9.00pm. Sunday Lunch: 12noon - 2.30pm.


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Slow cooked octopus, yuzo, miso, pickled vegetables. Chicken liver parfait with fig. Cornish crab, radish and ginger caviar. Fish Course

Pan fried fillet of John Dory, leek, watercress and Chanterelle mushrooms. Main Courses

aloud whether his drive for simplicity and focus on a new menu a year or two ago may soon earn a second star too. That would be a nice boast, but the improvement in Hambleton Hall’s dining experience is likely to be negligible as inspectors’ criteria at multi-star level is finicky at best; downright pedantic at worst. Besides, everyone at Hambleton Hall from Aaron to Chris to owner Tim uses their guests’ happiness as the most important metric, not the number of stars it can boast.

A 60-cover dining room plus beautifully designed gardens make Hambleton Hall ideal for an early spring break. Non-residents can dine for a wholly reasonable £31.50/two courses (£8.50/supp., three courses) as part of the area’s Lunch for Less promotion in March. À la carte dining meanwhile is £78/three courses; £98/four courses and a tasting menu for parties comprises six courses plus coffee for £95/person. The restaurant’s high price point is justifiable by virtue of the fact that premium suppliers like Launde Farm Lamb keep a large brigade

of chefs busy with dishes that take a huge amount of time and effort, certainly beyond those of most restaurants. Aaron and his brigade also grow a number of their ingredients in the hotel’s 17 acres of grounds and of course the hotel also has its own bakery headed up by Julian Carter. English oysters and other shellfish, meat and fish are sourced from artisan suppliers from across the country, whilst Tim and sommelier Dominique Baduel cultivate a 400-bin cellar that should satisfy even the most discerning would-be wine buff looking to show off their knowledge. Elsewhere, Hambleton Hall’s 17 bedrooms have been very tastefully and individually decorated by Stefa and prove both luxurious and comfortable for guests.

With a programme of events from wine tasting evenings to nights where guest chefs take over the kitchen, there’s always a reason to visit Hambleton Hall. Perhaps the best reason though, is a keen appreciation for the hardworking team who not only maintain Hambleton Hall’s impeccable standards, but ensure guests always leave the hotel wagging their tails... metaphorically if not literally. n

Roast loin of veal with violet globe artichokes, and truffle risotto. Breast of Merrifield Farm duck, kumquat, orange and caramel.

Launde Farm lamb with Mediterranean vegetables, ewe’s curd and rosemary sauce. Dessert

Hambleton Hall tiramisu. Crab apple soufflé with clotted cream ice cream.

Coconut and lime nougat glacé with pineapple, ginger and chilli. NB: Featured dishes are subject to change.

n For more information call Hambleton Hall, Hambleton, Oakham LE15 8TH. Call 01572 756991 or see 59

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is month we spring into the season with meals using local lamb

LEG OF LAMB with redcurrant jelly glaze

Preparation time: 20 minutes. Cooking time: 1 hour 15 minutes 3 parsnips (about 300g), peeled and quartered • 1 tbsp olive oil 4 charlotte potatoes (about 400g), cut into wedges • 200g radishes, trimmed 1 garlic bulb, halved • 5 rosemary sprigs • 2 tbsp redcurrant jelly 750g leg of lamb • 200ml fresh chicken stock Preheat the oven to 180˚C, gas mark 4. Put the parsnips in a large roasting tin and sprinkle over ½ tbsp oil. Season and roast for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and add the potatoes, radishes, garlic halves and rosemary sprigs to the tin. Toss together in the remaining ½ tbsp oil and season.

Warm the redcurrant jelly in the microwave and brush all over the lamb. Season and sit the lamb on top of the veg, then pour in the stock. Roast for 1 hour, turning the veg halfway through.

Ensure the surface of the meat is thoroughly cooked and the juices run clear, then remove from the oven and squeeze the roasted garlic out into the roasting tin. Mix with the veg and roasting juices and transfer to a serving dish. Slice the lamb and arrange on top of the vegetables, drizzling with the roasting juices. Serve with steamed green vegetables and more redcurrant jelly on the side, if liked.

Recipes & Dishes: Thousands of recipes can be found at

62 62

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MOROCCAN LAMB MEATBALL & BASMATI BAKE Ingredients: 300g Basmati rice • 400g can chopped tomatoes • 500ml hot chicken stock • 1 tsp harissa paste • 1 cinnamon stick, broken in half • 500g (approx 24) lamb meatballs • 25g pack fresh flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped Preheat the oven to 200ºC, gas mark 6. Place the Basmati rice in a casserole dish. Stir together the tomatoes, chicken stock and harissa paste. Pour over the rice, add the cinnamon stick halves and mix well. Sit the meatballs on top then cover and bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove the lid, stir and cook for a further 15 - 20 minutes, uncovered, until the rice is tender, the liquid has been absorbed and the meatballs are cooked through and nicely browned. Scatter over the parsley and serve. n


Ingredients: juice of two lemons • 1 tbsp olive oil • 2 crushed cloves garlic • 2 tsp dried oregano • 2kg whole leg of locally sourced lamb • 1.5kg red-skinned potatoes, peeled and cut into large cubes • 500g lamb gravy, warmed according to pack instructions

Mix together the lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and oregano. Place the lamb in a large roasting tin and make some incisions all over the leg using a small, sharp knife. Pour over the lemon mixture and leave to marinate, covered, in the fridge for 1 - 2 hours. Preheat the oven to 200ºC, gas mark 6. Roast the lamb for 45 minutes then add the potatoes to the tin, turning to coat them in the juices. Roast for a further 45 minutes until the lamb is nicely browned but the meat is still a little pink on the inside. Lift the lamb onto a board, cover with foil and leave to rest for 10 - 15 minutes. Drain any juice from the tin (add this to the gravy) and return the potatoes to the oven for a further 10 - 15 minutes until tender and golden brown. Carve the lamb and serve with the roast potatoes, gravy and some steamed green vegetables. n Recipes & Dishes:

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ROAST LEG OF LAMB WITH CAPER & LEMON BUTTER CRUST Preparation Time: 20 minutes. Cooking Time: 2 hours 10 minutes.

Ingredients: 1.5kg maris piper potatoes, cut into slices ½ celeriac, peeled and cut into slices One large onion, sliced • Four garlic cloves, crushed Three rosemary sprigs, leaves stripped • Six juniper berries One tbsp capers • 100g butter, softened Zest of a lemon • 2-2.5kg leg of lamb, trimmed of excess sinew • 450g pack lamb gravy, heated

Preheat the oven to 220°C, gas mark 7. Season and toss the potatoes, celeriac and onion over the base of a large roasting tin; pour over 100ml water. Use a pestle and mortar to crush the garlic, rosemary, juniper and capers to a rough paste; stir in the butter with the lemon zest and plenty of black pepper. Pierce the lamb all over with a sharp knife and rub with the butter mixture. Sit the lamb on top of the potatoes, season with sea salt and roast for 20 minutes. Reduce the heat to 180°C, gas mark 4, and cook for an hour and 20 minutes, rotating the lamb halfway. Lift the lamb off the potatoes and rest on a board loosely covered with foil. Increase the heat to 200°C, gas mark 6. Tip the tin and baste the potatoes with any juices; return to the oven for 30 minutes while the lamb rests. Before serving, pour off and discard any excess fat from the potatoes. Serve with the sliced lamb, gravy and steamed greens, if liked. n

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GREEK-STYLE LAMB PIE Serves Six. Prep time: 10 minutes. Cooking time: 45 - 50 minutes. Ingredients: 1-2 tbsp olive oil • A large onion, chopped • Two cloves garlic, finely chopped • 500g Lamb Mince • Three Vine Tomatoes • Vegetable stock • One tsp dried oregano or mint • 1kg medium red potatoes, peeled and halved lengthways • Two tsp cornflour • 50g pitted dry black olives, halved • 200g feta, crumbled • Steamed greens, to serve 66

Heat a splash of oil in a large saucepan and cook the onion and garlic for 5 minutes until softened. Add the lamb and cook for a further 4-5 minutes until browned. Chop 1 of the tomatoes, stir into the lamb and onion mixture and cook for 2 minutes until pulpy. Add the stock, dried herbs and 400ml boiling water. Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 220ºC, gas mark 7. Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with boiling water. Simmer gently for 10 minutes then drain and slice. Dissolve the cornflour in a little cold water and stir into the lamb mixture. Simmer for 1-2 minutes, then transfer to a large ovenproof dish. Stir in the olives and ¾ of the feta. Thinly slice the remaining tomatoes and lay on top of the mixture followed by the sliced potatoes. Brush the top with a little oil and scatter over the reserved feta. Bake for 15-20 minutes until golden brown. Serve with greens. n

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Traditionally a feast enjoyed before Lent, Shrove Tuesday celebrates the joy of milk, egg and flour. We’re upping the game with these pancake twists...




serves 4. Vegetarian. prep: 15mins. cook: 15mins.

slice, peel and stone two mangoes and place in a heatproof bowl. Gently heat 3tbsp rum (or apple juice) and 2tbsp muscovado sugar in a pan, stirring until the sugar dissolves. Pour over the mango and set aside to cool. Zest and juice a lime before adding some of the juice and 2tbsp shredded mint to the cooled mango then chill. Place 100g flour and a pinch of salt in a bowl. Crack in an egg. Whisk, gradually adding 300ml milk. Lightly grease a frying pan. Add batter and cook until golden brown. Flip and cook the other side. Place on a warm plate and cover with greaseproof paper. Repeat to make eight pancakes. Keep them warm by placing in the oven at 120°C. Place two pancakes on each plate and top with the mango and a dollop of coconut yoghurt sprinkled with the remaining lime zest.

>> Images and recipes in this feature are courtesy of Waitrose, 68

TOFFEE APPLE PANCAKES with vanilla ice cream serves 4. prep: 10mins. cook: 10mins. ingredients: 40g butter • four apples, cored and cut into thin wedges • three tbsp clear honey • three tbsp light brown soft sugar • 480g pancakes • four scoops vanilla ice cream • 25g hazelnuts, chopped and toasted

Heat the butter in a large frying pan. Add the apple wedges and fry for three minutes until beginning to soften and turn golden. Stir through the honey and sprinkle over the brown sugar. Continue to cook for a further four minutes until sticky and glazed. Warm the pancakes in the microwave or oven, according to the packet instructions, or make your own. Divide the toffee apples between the warmed pancakes then fold each one in half and in half again. Place two filled pancake cones on each plate and top with a generous scoop of vanilla ice cream. Drizzle over any sauce left in the pan and scatter with hazelnuts before serving. n

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BANANA BUTTERSCOTCH PANCAKES... serves 2-4. prep: 10mins. cook: 25mins. ingredients: (for the pancakes) 150g plain flour sifted • 50g golden caster sugar • 1⁄2tsp bicarbonate of soda • 284ml buttermilk • one egg from Fairburn’s Eggs, beaten • unsalted butter, for frying • two small bananas, sliced • (for the butterscotch sauce) 75g unsalted butter • 75g golden caster sugar • 100ml double cream, plus extra to serve • 1⁄2 tsp vanilla bean paste • 1⁄4 tsp flaky sea salt

Mix the flour, sugar and bicarbonate of soda in a bowl with a pinch of salt. Make a well in the centre and pour in the buttermilk and egg, whisk together until smooth, then set aside for 30 minutes. For the butterscotch sauce, melt the butter in a small saucepan over a medium heat, then add the sugar and allow to dissolve.

Simmer for four to five minutes, stirring regularly, until golden. Take off the heat and stir in the cream, vanilla and salt.

Heat a large frying pan over a medium

to low heat. Melt a knob of butter, then add a small ladleful of the batter and spread to a circle roughly 12cm in diameter. Cook two to three at once, if possible. Flip after two to three minutes when bubbles appear, then cook for another two to three minutes. Repeat to make eight pancakes. Stack onto plates, top with banana and spoon over the warm butterscotch sauce.

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Wine of the Month

Popularity of artisan gin continues apace with a new brand...

Domaine Bertrand Bachelet, Pinot Noir, Maranges, 2015 RRP £27.17 / 70cl / 13%

Bruce Midgley’s new gin distillery joins the local gin party with Melton Mowbray based company Brentingby producing three artisan gins from their sustainable distillery. Botanicals rather than added flavours make this a pure juniper treat. RRP £36/70cl, see n


1. A playful middle-range Rhône that’s vegan too. The usual suspects of ripe fruit and spice, from Grenache and Syrah. Its price point apes finer wines but at a more mid-week ticket! RRP £11.99 / 75cl / 14.5% ABV. 2. Domaine Vieux Telegraphe’s Chateauneuf Du Pape sees five generations of Brunier family channel their knowledge - and their vines into this sublime heavyweight red with blackcurrant, pepper and spices. RRP £70 / 75cl / 14.5% ABV.

3. And finally... a white Rhône with Saint-Péray’s Vins de Vienne. Creamy, delicious and as dry as any wine you’re likely to find, its pear and apple fruits are perfect as a spring pick-me-up. RRP £17.99 / 75cl / 13.5% ABV.

This month we’re championing spring lamb, and what better accompaniment than this Premier Cru Pinot? Bertrand Bachelet is the enfant terrible of Burgundy, still in his 20s. Yet this impressive wine is silky smooth with a Sunday lunch, elegant and supple. Powerful nose of red fruits and earth - mellow, well-rounded and plump on the palate, this robust wine has a complex structure culminating in stony, mineral notes. Around 400 acres of Maranges is dedicated to winemaking, with the area’s total output in excess of 1,000,000 bottles... and yet this is one of the best examples! n

A Single Malt from Speyside

12 Years in the Making If your recent Burn’s supper has depleted your supply of Scotch, restock with this 12-year old whisky that would bring a smile to the sonsie face of even the famous poet himself. From the Speyside region, it eschews the TCP-like smokiness of whiskies from the Isles in favour of a more balanced palate of fruit, heather and oak. The perfect satisfying dram for March! n Macallan 12 Year Old £54.99 / 70cl / 40% ABV.

n Our featured wines are available from the best local independent wine merchants, supermarkets and online, prices are RRP and may vary from those stated.


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DESIGN A Keen Eye For

is month’s featured property is a stunning country home designed to blend period style with family-friendly features. It’s the labour of love for Ben and Carrie Cripps, who have created their forever home but still find themselves keen to begin a new project... Words: Rob Davis.

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Property developer Ben Cripps quite literally brings his work home. As the owner of Langton Homes, based in Great Easton, Ben and his brother Toby are responsible for some of the area’s most beautiful developments. Historically they have worked on small developments, typically of five properties or so, although they are about to embark on some larger projects. The firm concentrates on individuality, the finer details, and high-quality materials and finishes for their developments.

The brothers have worked on niche developments around Rutland - Uppingham, Barrowden and Belton in Rutland for example - and in Leicestershire and North Norfolk Above/Right: The property’s entrance lobby and drawing room. The games room.


Main: The sitting room adjoins a spacious living kitchen creating a large living space.

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too. Having been a lower volume and more specialised developer, when it comes to his own property, you can see why Ben has an even keener eye for detail.

Having already developed a new build in his village, Great Easton, he and wife Carrie were then presented with the opportunity to create their ‘forever home’ by restoring an old Grade II listed country house just down the road.

Much to long-suffering Carrie’s consternation, the forever home - Barnsdale House, which is now very much completed - is giving way to another challenge as the couple are creating a more contemporary project. Carrie will, of course end up being just as keenly involved in the new project, but for

“Built in the early 1800s and with a Grade II listing, the house blends period style with well-thought out features to make family life easier...”

the family there’s a half-resigned and halfgleeful, sense of ‘here we go again.’ The fact that the couple can’t resist embarking on another project, however, will end up being of huge benefit to the next custodians of their current home, completed just last year. Barnsdale House is arranged over three floors and has five reception rooms and five bedrooms all with en suites.

Built in the early 1800s and with a Grade II listing, the house mitigates period style with

well-thought out features that the family with their three children and dog find make life easier day to day. In terms of its restoration, the property’s Welsh slate room was stripped of its tiles and completely restored, box sash windows were replaced whilst the coursed limestone and ashlar exterior was repointed.

Inside the house was rewired, replumbed and extended by means of an orangery added to the side of the Alexander Lewis kitchen.

The kitchen features bespoke cabinetry coloured in Farrow & Ball Railings, stone work surfaces and integrated Miele appliances as well as a separate boot room with bespoke cabinetry and plenty of space for storage plus a laundry room to keep family clutter like winter coats and necessary but >> 75

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>> noisy and unattractive white goods hidden from view. Solid oak parquet flooring features throughout the property, and there’s a beautifully restored original fireplace in the games room as well as specially commissioned hand-carved fireplaces in the other reception rooms. The design of cornices, skirtings and other architectural features have been copied faithfully. There are larger, more formal reception rooms as well as a cosy snug with wood burning stove. On the first floor there’s a master suite with dressing room and en suite whilst other bedrooms have en suite bathrooms all with fittings by Villeroy & Boch, as well as built-in storage too, even neat touches like a laundry shoot Main: A newly created orangery contains a family dining room, which adjoins the kitchen and sitting room. Right: All five bedrooms have en suite bathrooms and either dressing rooms or built-in storage.


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have been included. Set in around two acres, the house has a large lawned area, but also attractive low-maintenance box hedging and four raised vegetable beds in its curtilage too. The property is approached by powered gates and there’s also a four-bay oak-framed garage with additional storage. “I think it’s really important to respect the look and feel of an old property, but we’re also a family so the place has got to function well as a family home too,” says Ben.

“It’s a really wonderful home for families and very much practical as well as attractive. We’ve not scrimped on a single feature or material as it was very much a labour of love. We hope that’ll be obvious from its appearance, but won’t be as obvious is what a wonderful family home the place is as well!” n

BARNSDALE HOUSE AT GREAT EASTON Location: Great Easton, five miles from Uppingham, 12 miles from Oakham. Style: 1800s house beautifully restored by current owners. Bedrooms: Five, all en suite. Receptions: Five, arranged as drawing room, sitting room, games room, snug and living kitchen. Guide Price: £2,000,000. Find Out More: Barnsdale House is currently on the market with Strutt & Parker, Market Harborough. Call 01858 433123 or see


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DREAM A Midsummer Property

With spring still proving elusive, it’s difficult to comprehend the summer months beyond, but snap up this month’s featured property and you could enjoy living in this pretty cottage by the time summer comes around... Words: Rob Davis.


Living in a close-knit, traditional village is one of the privileges of life as a resident of Rutland and Stamford. Once nicely settled into village life, residents are inclined to stick around and we’ve even known vendors of our monthly featured properties move to different properties in the same village. Michelle Powell, owner of Midsummer Cottage is one such example. The cottage is her third home in the village of Ketton, and she doesn’t intend to move too far at all when she find new custodians for her current home. The exact provenance of the property is unknown but Michelle believes it dates back to the early to mid 1800s, and that it was probably the former home of the village’s farrier. Its most interesting former resident, though, was the renowned local artist Lady Barbara Brassey, who moved to the cottage following her second marriage to Lord Bernard

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MIDSUMMER COTTAGE, BULL LANE, KETTON Thomas Brassey, 2nd Baron of Apethorpe. Brassey painted right up to her death in 2010 and is well-regarded for her oils, watercolours and gouache landscapes and abstract skies.

At £500,000, it’s less expensive than some properties we feature, but offers a well-specified, smartly and inoffensively presented, hassle-free home you can move into straight away with no work to do. If you’re ratting around in a Georgian pile and the children have flown the nest, and if you’re seeking to move to a home with less time-consuming grounds without losing too much space, it’s really well-priced and tasteful.

What’s more, its layout suits modern living rather well despite its period style. Arranged over two floors there’s a good sized open plan dining and sitting room with an adjacent hardwood orangery with terracotta tiles and was rebuilt by Michelle in order to enjoy views over the gardens.

There’s also a breakfast kitchen with dining area and decent runs of worktop space as well as a separate utility kitchen.

Directly upstairs from the utility is a master bedroom with its own shower room, and on the opposite side of the cottage are three further bedrooms and a family bathroom so the cottage can accommodate mum and dad, but can also easily swell to accommodate guests or offspring returning from university. There are some nice open views over the land behind the property and of the Chater Valley, with mature planting and space for a couple of cars thanks to the new double gates and hard-standing that Michelle has created. It goes without saying that with such provenance in the village, Michelle is looking for new custodians for the property and wants owners who will adore Midsummer Cottage as much as she does. n

Style: Period cottage renovated by present owner five years ago. Bedrooms: Four, with one en suite shower room. Receptions: Three, currently arranged as breakfast kitchen, lounge/diner and orangery. Features: Potential for one wing to be used as annexe accommodation. Guide Price: £500,000. Find Out More: Midsummer Cottage is currently on the market with Newton Fallowell, Stamford PE9 1PL. Call 01780 408233 or see


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Making Blues Sing

DARK BLUE AND NAVY SHADES ADD A TOUCH OF CLASS INDEPENDENTLY, BUT COMBINED WITH THE NEW DESIGNS AND QUALITY FABRICS FROM THE AREA’S BEST NAMES IN DESIGN, THEY CAN REALLY MAKE A ROOM SING THE BLUES Interior designers are always braver using bold colours and shades than homeowners. Liberated from the fear of creating something outlandish, a professional designer has the confidence to carry off stronger colour schemes. That’s perhaps the reason that when blue is used by homeowners it’s a lighter, softer China blue rather than a bolder stronger cobalt. However, fortune favours the bold, and having the courage to inject a stronger, darker colour into your home can yield some impressive results.

Especially ideal for contemporary rooms, dark blue shades will contract a room’s dimensions, making the colour especially suitable for creating intimate dining rooms or informal family sitting rooms.

Over this spread we’re identifying brand new collections from Clarke & Clarke, whilst over the page we’ve other brands’ collections which can create a cohesive blue scheme for your room. As these firms are fabric suppliers, our recommendation is to liaise with local independent interior designers, each of whom Main: The coffee table/footstool is in Struttura in Kingfisher blue while the sofa’s pattern is Lavico in Midnight blue. Curtains are in the brand’s Fascino pattern. Right: From top to bottom, Solare, Corallino, Lavico and Fascino patterns from Clarke & Clarke’s Lusso 2 collection.

will stock these brands. They’ll also be able to recover existing furniture, restore a beloved piece and incorporate it into your new room, or design and commission a completely bespoke brand new sofa or chair made to your specification. Naturally they’re also able to provide bespoke window dressings and cushions to provide the perfect finishing touches for your room. >>

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Above: Commission a completely bespoke sofa from Delcor. The Stamford based firm can create this Florence design in an almost limitless range of fabrics.

Right: The Cosmopolitan collection from GP & J Baker includes luxurious silks and opulent velvets together with contemporary textural weaves and embroideries.


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“Use bold blue in your home to create dramatic, intimate reception rooms and to contract spaces like dining rooms. In spaces like bedrooms and day rooms, pair with neutral colours like grey and Old English White...”

Top: The Little Greene Paint Company created a specific range of blue paints anticipating this year’s design trend. Shown here is Juniper Ash over Clockface Grey. Shown top/right is Jane Churchill’s Samara in teal. Above: A brand new collection for Cole and Son, Bluebell from the Botanica collection.


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RECOMMENDED FURNISHINGS Cavells Home, Oakham 01572 770372

Delcor Interiors, Stamford 01780 762579 Elizabeth Stanhope Interiors, Oakham 01572 722345

Left: Clarke and Clarke’s Truttura in Kingfisher against Solare Midnight curtains and a range of cushion patterns. Above: The chairs are in Clarke & Clarke’s Tessere fabric while the cushion is Fascino. Right: Top Right are shades from the firm’s Lusso Sheers range.

Eye4Design, Stamford & Rutland 01780 723128, 01572 729390, Furniture Loft, M/Harborough, LE16 7PT, 01858 435500,

Furleys, Rutland 01572 755539 H Works, Stamford 01780 754605

J&L Ball, Stamford 01780 481416, Oldrids Downtown Gonerby, Grantham, 01476 590239, Paul Edwards Interiors, Hinckley LE10 0BL, 01455 616095.

Sarah Harding Interiors, Uppingham, 01572 823389 n


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An Eye for Quality, with Eye4Design

They’ve over 35 years of experience, but new premises in 2018 meant Eye4Design can offer an even wider range of services from their studio. From upholstery to wallcoverings to curtains, blinds and paint, you’ll find quality products and a keen ‘eye for design’ when you meet Mark & Eileen Moore...

Spring will soon be here, but if the only signs of a fresh look for the season are in your garden, it might be a good idea to seek the help of Mark & Eileen Moore of Eye4Design. The interior designers and bespoke upholsterers have been trading for over 35 years, but the couple’s move to a new design studio in Pinchbeck last year has enabled them to display a greater number of ranges and create increasingly complex and involved projects for their domestic clients and also their commercial customers.

From a single chair or sofa, a couple of cushions or bespoke curtains to a whole room, or from a few hints and a mood board, to more involved guidance or a full interior design consultation, owners Mark and Eileen Moore can provide as much or as little help as you need and can provide not just fabrics, wallcoverings, paints and bespoke furnishings, but also accessories like luxurious throws and cushions commissioned exclusively for clients, as well as lighting, mirrors and other accessories.

“Some of our clients simply want the right products at the right prices to facilitate their own design projects, whilst others want us to have a little more involvement,” says Mark. “Either way, we’ve one of the largest libraries of fabric and wallcoverings libraries, and we can provide advice, inspiration, plus we can measure and install with free, no-obligation home visits.” “Whether you’re looking to breathe new life into a tired looking sofa or chair, or create a new look for your home this spring, we’ve an ‘eye for design,’ and a desire to help you create just the room you’ve been imagining in time for spring.” n

Pictured Opposite: Clarke & Clarke’s Oasis collection. Eye4Design stocks Linwood, Clarke & Clarke, Voyage, GP&J Baker, Romo, Osborne & Little, Cole & Son and many more brands. The firm is based on Cresswell Close, Pinchbeck, Spalding PE11 3TY but work across Rutland and Stamford. Call 01775 680109 or see for a free, no obligation discussion about your project. 92

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Where Style Meets


A quality kitchen is an important lifetime investment not just financially but in terms of its role as the most well-used room in your home. Ensure yours works well and looks great through the years with Simon Jennings of PDA Kitchens... Words: Rob Davis.

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“Simon has installed hundreds of kitchens for clients, ensuring they work well for families as well as looking good...”

Working alongside one another is a fact of modern life. These days we cook together with our partners, we help the children to complete their homework together, we even work from home, paperwork strewn over the kitchen table.

Another person it’s good to work closely with is your chosen kitchen designer. Take Simon Jennings, for example. He established PDA Kitchens of Peterborough back in 1991 and has installed hundreds and hundreds of kitchens for his clients, working collaboratively with them to ensure their rooms not only look good, but function well for families too.

Moving to his current premises in Werrington five years ago, Simon typically works with budgets of £15k - £25k in modern homes,

period properties, barn conversions and extensions. With both traditional and contemporary styles, Simon has selected brands like the classical Edwardianinfluenced shaker collection 1909 to more modern matte finish handleless kitchens and ultra-modern styles by Stamford-based Deseo with its range of stone-effect kitchens and in-frame shakers. With appliances from Neff, Siemens, Bosch, and Miele, plus new technology like in-built steam ovens, coffee machines and boiling water taps as well as Aga cookers, absolutely any technology can be incorporated discreetly.

“There are lots of extensions to properties in the area and typically my clients want to create a modern living kitchen environment in a period property, usually with an island and a single or two-tone colour scheme.” “Mitigating a new kitchen in an old property is a challenge I really enjoy, but producing a good-looking kitchen is only half the aim. Creating one which also proves fit for purpose for a family’s lifestyle and seeing the project through in a way which minimises disruption for the client is the real challenge.”

“I manage all trades from building, plumbing and electrical work down to the decorators, to make achieving a kitchen that will work well for you and look great as easy as possible.” n

Find Out More: Simon Jenning’s PDA Kitchens is based on Papyrus Road, Peterborough PE4 5BH. Call 01733 894422 or see


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New Coventry Store Now Open! OFFERS IN BOTH STORES

TRINITY LANE, HINCKLEY, LE10 0BL Tel: 01455 616 095

RUGBY ROAD, BINLEY WOODS, CV3 2AW Tel: 02476 453 878 Open: Monday - Saturday 10.00am 5.00pm Sunday 11.00am - 4.00pm FREE CAR PARK AT REAR




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Your local cabinetmaker specialising in bespoke furniture commissions

Contact us to discuss your ideas or visit the website to find out more 07977 236353 103

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It’s the local ‘ingredient’ with true provenance - but this isn’t food or drink, it’s an ingredient for creating a beautiful home; locally quarried limestone. It’s ideal for use both inside and on the exterior of your home... The phrase local ingredient typically refers to food and drink. But what about local limestone? Thousands of years in the making, and taken from the earth in an ecologically sustainable operation, it’s a product with natural provenance and a beauty all of its own.

Stamford Stone Company has been providing homeowners, architects and builders with limestone both locally but further afield too for over 20 years, for restoration of some of the countries most prestigious buildings, from restoration of The Houses of Parliament to award winning new colleges at Oxford University. Operating from three quarries in Lincolnshire - Stamford Stone Company can supply material both for the exterior and the interior of your home. Launched in 2017, Stamford Stone at Home focuses on a

range of natural limestone for your home, with a range of flooring, paving and patios as well as bespoke staircases and fireplaces.

“As a company, we wanted to be able to supply the whole package of Natural limestone to not only the commercial sector, but the self-builder and home improver.”

“The property we’re featuring here was constructed in 2018 and shows how natural stone can be used in every element of your home and how the product suits the area’s architectural vernacular beautifully,” says the firm’s Laura Green.

“Natural stone doesn’t date. It speaks quietly and elegantly of permanence, inherent quality and resilience, bringing warmth and beauty to every room. Choosing natural stone allows you to express yourself, your sense of style and your individuality.” n

1. self Build home in leicestershire in clipsham limestone. 2. kitchen flooring – walcott honed limestone from £75 per m2. 3. fireplaces are the focal point of a living room – a cosy fire burning bright and keeping you warm through winter, framed by a stunning bespoke fireplace surround. 4. external paving – cathedral gold from £55 per m2. 5. Bedroom floor - lima cream limestone from £65 per m2. 6. e company can produce material for your portico, datestones and exterior & interior cills and as mullion windows. n Stamford Stone is based at Swaddywell Quarry, Stamford Road, Helpston PE6 7EL. Call 01780 740970 for a no-obligation discussion of your individual product or visit 104

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spring forward this march Cabin fever? Fear not! Whether you’re labouring in your own garden or simply enjoying the hard work of other gardeners in the area, there’s plenty of colour on the horizon with a profusion of colour promised thanks to these spring stalwarts...

If you’ve reached the point that the stark silver beauty of winter has just become dull and you’re willing spring to bring a profusion of colour into your garden, wait no longer. With the advent of spring, gardeners like Dan Hancock are set to be very busy as legions of Stamford and Rutland folk pile through the doors of the area’s nurseries and garden centres, keen to venture out into the garden and begin their spring projects.

For six years now Dan has been the plant area manager at Gates Garden Centre, and he reliably assures us that this year the centre has the widest and best quality ranges of spring bulbs sourced from Holland as well as locally grown bulbs from Spalding in South Lincolnshire to provide your garden, borders and pots with colour all season long. Buying Advice...

“Buying them potted and planting them out will ensure you’ve a head start in the garden,” says Dan. “With some good strong growth on them 108

you’ll be able to plant them from February right through to mid-March and will benefit from colour right up to mid-April.” “Most summer bulbs fare best in semi-shaded woodland and in well-drained soil. Our local soils are quite clay-rich, so making sure you use plenty of grit will keep them draining well and will prevent rot.” Don’t overwater your bulbs...

“It’s tempting when you see dry soil on the surface around your spring bulbs to reach for the watering can, but in fact, overwatering is a hazard, so poke your finger down an inch or so and if the soil’s moist, it’s dry enough. If you’re planting your spring bulbs in tubs and containers (a wise move given that they spread quite easily) >>

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“As with all spring bulbs, once they’ve finished growing, don’t be too quick to hack off all of the green foliage. The plant is still actively photosynthesising, and leaving some of the leaves intact will aid next year’s growth...” >> it’s a good idea to ensure you’ve drilled a few holes in the bottom of your container to aid drainage too.”

“Being wild flowers, spring bulbs usually manage well enough without feed, but if you’re keen to give your bulbs a boost, use a general liquid feed like Miracle Grow.” As with all spring bulbs, once they’ve finished growing, don’t be too quick to hack off all of the green foliage. The plant is still actively photosynthesising, and leaving some of the leaves intact will aid next year’s growth. Snowdrops...

A profusion of snowdrops at the bottom of your garden is a sure sign that winter is on its way out. Separate your galanthus after about three years, digging them out with a fork and dividing them to give each a little helping hand. Try not to plant them around evergreen shrubs as they’ll have to fight for root space and rather than planting them close to the surface, ensure they’re about three times the bulb’s size down into the soil to avoid predation by squirrels, moles and other creatures. Bluebells...

Bluebells can cope with most soils, but conditioning your soil and ensuring it’s rich in organic matter prior to planting will help. Plant your bluebells below trees to a depth of about 10cm. It’s best to avoid Spanish bluebells which tend to be a bit more invasive than English varieties. Crocus...

The varieties of crocus available at garden centres and plant nurseries these days is almost limitless, and which you choose is entirely down to your personal tastes. More tolerant of sunshine than other spring bulbs, the crocus provides a rich range of colours... and speaking of rich, if you fancy growing the world’s most expensive spice, it’s the Saffron Crocus (Crocus sativus) from which we derive the spice of the same name. Daffodils...

And of course, nothing says March like a gaudy yellow display of daffodils. Narcissus come in 13 different divisions, categorised 110

mainly by the appearance of the flower specifically the ‘trumpet.’ Thankfully growing daffodils is as simple as other spring bulbs but occasionally gardeners suffer what’s known as ‘daffodil blindness’ - where greenery is produced but no flowers emerge.

Above: Crocus tommasinianus at Easton Walled Garden, just a stone’s throw from Stamford. Image: Fred Cholmeley.

Minimise the risks by purchasing good quality bulbs from local garden centres, planting bulbs two or three times their depth and by avoiding overwatering. Rather than plucking off foliage, leave it to die down naturally in order to keep the plant feeding its rootstock.

Of course, if all that planting and dividing sounds too much like hard work, there are a few absolutely brilliant places around Stamford and Rutland to enjoy banks of bulbs... and the most you’ll need to do is stretch your legs to enjoy the very best colours that the season has to unfold! n

Find Out More: Dan Hancock is the plant expert and plan area manager at Gates Garden Centre, Somerby Rd, Cold Overton, Oakham LE15 7QB. Call 01664 454309 or see

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Stretch Your Legs: Three of the area’s prettiest gardens to enjoy in spring...

n Barnsdale Gardens: Hosting its Spring Fiesta from 4th-7th March, highlights of Geoff Hamilton’s eight acres and 38 individual gardens include a winter border of gardens of exceptional colour. Oakham, Rutland LE15 8AH Call 01572 813200 or see

n Easton Walled Gardens: Snowdrop Week at Easton runs from late February to Sunday 3rd March it’s Open Season at the beautifully restored gardens of Easton. Easton Ln, Grantham NG33 5AP Call 01476 530063 or see

n Burghley House: And finally, Burghley House’s South Gardens will open with a spectacular display of Narcissi and spring bulbs over the Capability Brown landscape from 16th March to 5th April. Stamford, Lincolnshire PE9 3JY Call 01780 752451 or see


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Making the most of your garden

We design every type of garden... large and small, town and country, formal and wild, potted and planted. And all of our designs are different, except for two very important details - they all make the most of your outdoor space, and every design we do is within the budget set by you, our client. So you spend what you want and we give you the best garden for your investment.

What do we do?

Whatever is required. We take on full design and build projects to advice on container planting. We love upgrading flower beds and borders or help with specific areas of your garden.

What do you get?

• An achievable design, based on your style and needs • An affordable garden scheme, based on your budget • A useable space to give you year-round pleasure • A design which makes the most of your site and location • An extra room filled with colour, texture, scent and style

What next? Contact Soo on 07545 007323 for an initial chat. Email Soo via or see our work on Facebook and Instagram...


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CALM A Little Place of

is month’s featured garden enjoys more than a slight oriental influence. It may be small, but it’s perfectly formed and a great example of why employing a professional garden designer can save money and create a space you can feel really proud of... Words & Images: Rob Davis.

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“Peace,” as the Buddha once said, “Comes from within.” Well perhaps, but our gardens need to share some of the credit as well. They’re spaces in which we entertain, relax, and create beauty. But above all, they’re our own very special places of peace and tranquillity.


The garden was created by Soo Spector, professional designer as a low-maintenance Japaneseinspired space. It measures In fact, because Soo is so just over 12 metres good at overseeing both hard by 20 metres. That’s especially the case with this small but so very

perfectly formed urban garden in the unlikely setting of a new development of properties on the outskirts of Oakham.

Quite aside from the strong theme - it’s ostensibly a Japanese garden - what we love most about the space is that it’s strong testimony in favour of using a professional garden designer, and it helps to eschew a few of the misconceptions that people have a about garden design, which is why we had to meet its co-creator Soo Spector. We say co-creator because like all of Soo’s projects, its design was a collaborative effort alongside the owner of the property.

To employ a garden designer, you need a large space, right? Absolutely not. This garden measures about 30 square metres, but still manages to incorporate the perspectives, seating areas and space for planting that its owner was seeking.

Of course, you’ll need deep pockets to employ a garden designer, won’t you? Again, absolutely not. Soo’s garden design commissions are anything from dinky courtyard gardens with a few pots for just a few hundred pounds to much larger spaces and budgets up to six figures.

What’s more, as Soo uses her own contractors, sources plants and other materials from wholesale sources, and controls labour costs for any construction, the initial cost of a garden designer can also be offset by significant savings in the cost of the materials themselves. All well and good. But you’ll end up with a space that’ll take a huge amount of effort to maintain each summer, surely? Not at all. 114

landscaping and soft landscaping elements in a garden, and because she’s always so keen to ensure her gardens reflect their owners’ lifestyles - incorporating sufficient space for their owners to exercise their own creativity, for example, or controlling the amount of work the garden will entail for their owners - is a really important part of getting her design right. The garden’s owner has recently retired and wanted a space to entertain, but one that was easy to manage too as she travels a lot. This didn’t just mean lots of hard-landscaping, and minimal planting, but rather a more thoughtful selection of grasses, ferns, evergreens, perennials and small trees like acers. “She wanted a Japanese garden,” recalls Soo. “So we sat and created a brief together to ensure that we both had a strong idea of exactly what that meant. Discussion, collaboration is the most important part of design.”

“It’s really important that before coming up with a concept design - a sort of first draft - I understand what the client wants, and perhaps as important, what they don’t want; lots of work, for example. >>

Main: Despite its small size and position adjacent to a brand new property, Soo’s design for a Japanese Garden is low-maintenance and can be enjoyed all year round. Opposite: Fargesia Muriale and Acer Palmatum are just two of the plants incorporated to ensure all year round interest.

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>> “This leads to a ‘master plan’ stage which is more involved and has a full planting plan, costings, schedule and much more detail, enabling me to create a fixed-price.” The Japanese garden needed to incorporate the sound of water, which has been achieved with a small and very easy to maintain selfcontained feature.

It also needed to have all year round interest and it certainly does, with a range of Heucheras and acers, plus ferns and grasses that are both easy to maintain but also ensure the garden never looks ‘naked’ regardless of the time of year. A range of pots and containers ensure it’s easy to add or move around planting, whilst LED lighting has been incorporated to ensure the garden can still be seen and appreciated at dusk.


“I believe a really nice outdoor space that you can enjoy for as much of the year as possible it not a privilege; it’s an absolute right!” Raised bedding brings planting closer to eye-level, and there’s still an area of grass, albeit of a size and shape that’s easy to maintain. Likewise, automatic irrigation is a feature that Soo integrates into almost all of her gardens for the ultimate in ease.

The pergola also incorporates lighting and is nicely sheltered from breezes in the cooler months, and is one of three different seating areas in the garden including a patio.

“There are so many preconceptions about garden design,” says Soo. “It’s frustrating because I believe a really nice outdoor space that you can enjoy for as much of the year as possible it not a privilege; it’s a right.” “There’s no such thing as too small, too difficult - when it comes to the shape of a plot - or too tight when it comes to budget.”

“Gardens are not solely a posh person’s thing. The tradespeople I collaborate with believe that everyone should love their garden, and that a well-designed garden should add intrinsic as well as financial value to your home. Everybody’s garden should be a space they’ll love and use for years to come.” n Soo Spector is a garden designer based in Rutland who works across Rutland Lincolnshire and Leicestershire. For a free, no obligation discussion about your garden, call 07545 007323 or see

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We all love mother nature... but how cheeky of her to try to steal your summer. Fortunately Tom Calton of Peterborough’s RTC Groundcare - formerly Peterborough Groundcare Machinery - has some new premises and some robot friends to help liberate you from weekends behind a lawnmower! Monty says hello. So do Chewie, Stig and Marvin. The gang may sound like likely lads but in fact, having spent the winter months in hibernation at Peterborough’s RTC Groundcare, they’ll be going back to their respective homes to take care of their owners’ gardens all summer long. Robot mowers might seem like a gimmick or something futuristic, rather than a practical alternative to being behind the mower, but last year’s drought and a reduced need for mowing helped to boost sales of automatic robot mowers by over 200% for RTC Groundcare’s Tom Calton.

“They’re fully automatic, finding their own way around your lawn, adjusting the cutting speed to the density of each part of your lawn.” “They ‘nibble’ at the grass gradually and mulch clippings back into the lawn to feed it - so there’s no grass box to empty. They work day and night at a whisper quiet volume, even keeping pests like badgers away at night, and they charge automatically. They’re theft-proof and a real novelty too!”

“Some of our clients were sceptical at first but after a free demonstration in their own gardens they’ve proved very popular indeed!”

“Clients name their robotic mower and even purchase vinyl skins for them to make them look like ladybirds or piles of leaves. They become a source of absolute fascination, but they work really well too” “And most of all, they ensure you don’t have to give up your weekend, leaving you free to enjoy your garden, not work in it all summer long.”

“Best of all, our Husqvarna machines are the last word in reliability, with the same technology as used in our professional groundcare and construction machines. The brand is so reliable that we simply couldn’t recommend anything else.” n

New Name, New Premises... But the same team and the same great service! RTC Groundcare is the new name for Peterborough Mower & Groundcare, now based at new, larger premises on Newark Road, Peterborough. The business was established in 1996 originally selling construction machinery. Diversifying into groundcare with its halo-brand Husqvarna, the new name

reflects its commitment to the new and used sales, servicing, parts and hire of garden and estate management equipment for domestic and commercial users. RTC Groundcare specialises in ride-on or walk behind mowers, robot mowers and rechargeable tools. The showroom has over 70 products on show. n

RTC Groundcare - formerly Peterborough Mower & Groundcare - is now based at new, larger premises at Arnwood Centre on Newark Road, Peterborough PE1 5YH. Call 01733 907060 or see for how to obtain your free, no obligation demonstration in your own garden of the firm’s robot automowers.


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Contemporary Country Elegance

Local photographer Rachael Connerton has combined local wedding suppliers’ talents to create a beautiful styled wedding shoot that exudes country elegance with a striking, contemporary twist that’s romantic and sumptuous... Images: Rachael Connerton, 01664 822342,

Rachael Connerton, local photographer, has teamed up with local suppliers to present a stunning styled wedding shoot for brides in the area looking for inspiration and ideas. “We’ve been fortunate to shoot a number of beautiful weddings at Belvoir Castle and, having found an image of an architectural, feather-themed bouquet, we were inspired to design something very unique there,” says Rachael.

“Working closely with Natalie Hewitt, local wedding planner, we aimed to create a shoot which paid homage to the grandeur of the Castle, and also reflected the rich history of country pursuits. Usually, the two have a clear divide and attract very different types of couples, but we wanted to achieve a look that appealed to both and would attract the modern, stylish bride looking for sophistication and elegance, with a fresh twist.” “We also aimed to create a sophisticated, light and bright shoot which showcased country tweed in a completely new way. Keeping many elements of the styling elegantly simple allowed us to create a look which would work at any time of year and didn’t restrict us just to an autumnal feel (often the first assumption with tweed).” “The castle provided the lavish backdrop and the opulent table settings added a touch

Wedding Suppliers Photographer: Rachael Connerton, www.rachael

Styling and Planning: Natalie Hewitt, Bridalwear: Joanna Leigh, Florist: Floraldeco,

Hair & Makeup: Jenn Edwards & Co, Bridesmaids Dresses: Ghost, Models: Blake Models, Cake: Couture Cakes.

Stationery: Rose Press,

of elegance to the styling,” says stylist Natalie Hewitt. “The subtle use of pheasant feathers throughout provided a reference to the surrounding rural countryside.” “Creating dramatic floral arrangements for the ceremony and dining set up oozed sophistication but the asymmetrical construction of the flowers brought the opulence into the modern era.’

The colour palette comprised romantic, faded hues of apricots, blush, lilacs and soft grey tones. The colours were inspired by the warm stone of Belvoir, and the subtle colour palette of the Castle’s elegant interiors.

“The dramatic floral installation was designed to create a stylish, opulent focal area for the Grand Ballroom,” says Rebecca at Floraldeco. “The main bouquet contained the same blooms interspersed with an abundance of feathers (to mirror the striking architecture of the Castle’s turrets) and this married together beautifully with the tweed bodice and antique-inspired skirts of the couture wedding gowns.” The four-tiered statement ‘floral skirt’ cake mirrored the same beautiful flowers as used in the dramatic installation and, by positioning on an elegant perspex plinth, was designed to create the illusion of it ‘floating.’ 123

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“Belvoir Castle’s various tapestries influenced our subtle French embroidered lacework on the waist, framing the hemline...” “A glance into history offered immediate inspiration for the ‘Belvoir-inspired’ tweed gown,” says Joanna from Joanna Leigh Couture. “The unique design pays tribute to aristocratic traditions and also to the likes of Coco Chanel for reinventing tweed for feminine and softly sculptured tailoring.”

“Belvoir’s Louis XlV tapestries influenced our subtle French embroidered lacework on the waist, framing the hemline of the gown delicately adorned with hand stitched Swarovski crystals and pearls to add weight and lustre.”

As you can see from the shoot, all of these elements and suppliers combined have produced something really beautiful. Visit each suppliers’ websites for more information. Images: Rachael Connerton, 01664 822342,


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WE LOVE WEDDINGS! From our Rutland base we can help you visualise and create a wonderful and bespoke marquee venue for your special day.

0808 169 1690


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WEDDING Combine the luxury of iridescent gold with the warmth and femininity of blush pink. Create your theme with our hints...

Warm up your white wedding with the twin hues of soft gold and blush pink. The two shades go hand-in hand and are easy to work with. Warm up the appearance of your bridesmaids with Essence of Australia’s glittery gold bridesmaids’ gowns and add a sparkle to their outfit or your own with sparkly shoes from brands like Paradox or Jimmy Choo.

Invitations are another ideal way to incorporate gold in your wedding theme. Don’t try to DIY your own invitations as your domestic printer won’t be able to recreate a gold colour faithfully. Instead, opt for a commercial supplier and use gold stock of paper or foil embossing to create a realistic looking gold.

Gold leafed cakes and gold candles will look good against your wedding breakfast tables, as will pearl and gold accessories around your crockery, especially if your caterer is just using white china. It’s tricky to utilise gold in your flowers without combining with another colour. Especially for spring and summer weddings, combine with light pink ad incorporate that shade as well. n


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Main: Vintage swing coat in Happy Yellow. Also comes in Garden Rose Pink, £198.

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Opposite: Hambledon trousers in navy, £80, Adrianna court shoes varying in colours, featured in mini spot, £130 and Maria Relaxed shirt £70. Main: Lottie Midi Dress, £130.

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Main: Maria Relaxed shirt £70, Edie cardigan £98, Hambledon trousers in Happy yellow £80. Opposite: The Jessie jumpsuit in classic khaki £120 and Henrietta courts in Poinsettia £120. For more products, see

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Opposite: Hadley jumper £80, Brooke embroidered skirt £85 and Elsworth heeled boots £140. Main: Sarah Ottoman top £55, Richmond trousers £65 and Henrietta flats £80.

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1. Bronze & Glow Delilah’s Bronze & Glow collection is a new collection from a really up and coming brand that will put the colour back into your cheeks this spring. It’s halo product is this Sunset matte bronzer palette, available in light or medium dark. Its ultralight, silky texture blends perfectly over the skin while soft focus pigments help to veil imperfections, leaving a beautiful, even complexion, whilst Vitamin E helps protect the skin and Jojoba oil aids hydration. £34/11g.

2. Soft, Smooth Skin

Coveted for its luxurious texture and luminous finish, NARS’s new Radiant Creamy Concealer evens skin with lightweight medium to high buildable coverage. It creates a softer, smoother complexion, instantly obscuring imperfections and diminishing fine lines. £24/6ml.

3. Spring Lip Service

Whilst some matte lipsticks can feel too heavy, we’ve found a wonderful example from Charlotte Tilbury that’s worth its purchase price. Create the illusion of fuller, wider lips, with 11 shades available including our favourite, shown here, Pillow Talk. £24/3.5g

4. A Fresh Look

FreshFace Instant Glow Luminizer Sunset is a lightweight luminiser improves the appearance of skin, leaving it silky, supple, and smooth. Use it to highlight areas such as cheekbones, cleavages, and brow-bones as they play off light. £26.50/30ml.



An essential part of your beauty regime is immaculate nails, and Guerlain’s La Petite Robe Noire nail colour is one of the best nail colours we’ve encountered. Uniquely, it’s scented with a floral fruity fragrance, rather than the usual chemical-smell. It also provides an ultra-shiny finish thanks to new plasticisers and improve pigments. Shown here is Pink Ballerinas shade. £18/8.8ml.

6. Fresh Spring Cologne Jo Malone’s new fragrance collection includes this woody scent evokes a fresh emergence of lighter evenings and the first signs of spring. Vibrant juniper and fresh grapefruit are offset with sultry leather and base notes of vetiver. An ideal scent for those looking forward to the fresher months. £75/50ml; £120/100ml.

n All our beauty products are available from local high quality independent stockists unless otherwise stated, prices are RRP. Visit each makeup brand’s website for more information on local stockists.

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OSTEOARTHRITIS? Osteoarthritis is a musculoskeletal disease and the world’s most common joint ailment. A slow but steady degeneration of the cartilage causes the joints to be painful and stiff.

Molecular Bio-physical Stimulation Therapy (MBST) treatment helps to regenerate the cartilage by stimulating the cells into regrowth (cell regeneration). Once MBST treatment is complete the cells have been sufficiently stimulated in order to continue regenerating by themselves, reducing pain and allowing for greater movement and therefore a better quality of life. MBST – how it works: using physics

medically MBST is similar to MRI technology (Magnetic Resonance Imaging), but instead of using magnetic resonance to generate images, MBST stimulates cartilage cells by transferring energy to the targeted area in order to activate regenerative processes. MBST is the only technology that works on a cellular level and stimulates cells to preserve the natural joint. 140

MBST treatment offers both antiinflammatory and pain-relieving effects, which enables a comfortable, uncomplicated and sustainable treatment of osteoarthritis – free from risks, strains or side effects, and with a long-lasting effect that has been scientifically confirmed. Advantages of MBST treatment: • No side effects • No surgery • No injections • No drugs • No intravenous infusions • Relaxing, stress-free treatment process • Sustainable treatment • More than 270,000 patients treated FAQ:

What are the side effects of MBST therapy? There have been no reported side effects of MBST therapy since it was first applied internationally in 1998.

Will I immediately feel better after treatment? MBST cannot compensate overnight for damages that have developed over long periods of time. However, many patients report that their mobility improved rapidly and that the associated pain was reduced or even disappeared. How long does the effect of the MBST therapy last, and can the treatment be repeated? Patient data shows a significant reduction in pain could be verified years after the therapy. If necessary, MBST treatment can be repeated any number of times, but the need for top ups is uncommon. n Would you like further information, to make a booking, or just have a question to ask? Then please do contact our experienced and friendly team at Clare House Physiotherapy and Cell Regeneration LTD. Call 01780 238 084 or email TREATING PEOPLE, NOT PATIENTS.

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The shoulder joint is a ball and socket joint. It is formed from a ball on the top of the arm bone (humerus) and a shallow socket which is part of the shoulder blade (scapula). Above the ball and socket joint there is a ligament attached to the bony prominences on the scapula on the top (acromion) and at the front (coracoid). This is called the coracoacromial ligament which forms an arch. The space between the shoulder joint and the arch is known as the sub-acromial space.

The shoulder is moved by a group of four muscles and tendons known as the rotator cuff. They attach from the shoulder blade onto the top of the arm bone passing through the sub-acromial space. A small fluid fill sac (subacromial bursa) cushions the tendons from the roof of the arch.

When the rotator cuff is injured, it swells and because it is surrounded by bone, its swelling causes an increase in the pressure within the tendon which results in compression (squeezing) and reduced blood flow in the capillaries (small blood vessels).When the blood flow is reduced, the tendon tissue begins to fray and in advanced stages may rupture.

Rotator cuff disease may be the result of either a single substantial injury to the shoulder or most commonly to progressive degeneration or wear and tear of the tendon tissue. Repetitive overhead activity or heavy lifting over a prolonged period of time may irritate or damage the tendons. .Examples includes painters, carpenters, and people who play baseball or tennis. The risk of rotator cuff 142

injury also increases with age as it is most common in people older than 40. There may be a genetic component involved with rotator cuff injuries as they appear to occur more commonly in certain families. The main symptoms of rotator cuff disease are pain in and around the shoulder joint and painful movement of the shoulder. The pain may be described as a dull ache deep in the shoulder and disturb sleep particularly lying on the affected shoulder. The pain is made worse by reaching (up behind the back, overhead, etc.) and may be accompanied by arm weakness.

Rotator cuff disease is diagnosed by taking the medical history and physical examination. The later usually involves moving the shoulder in various positions and comparing it with the unaffected side. X-rays of the shoulder may show bone spurs causing tendons impingement and help to exclude other causes of shoulder pain such as osteoarthritis. Dynamic ultrasound of the shoulder may demonstrate tendons impingement and tear. A diagnosis of impingement syndrome may be made when a small amount of an anaesthetic (painkiller) is injected into the space under the acromion and relieves the pain. MRI of the shoulder will confirm if the tendons are torn and the size of the tear, shows the status of the muscles and anatomical details required to plan surgery. Without treatment, rotator cuff injury may lead to permanent weakness of the arm. Also, prolonged immobilisation due to pain

may cause thickening and tightness of the shoulder joint capsule (frozen shoulder). Physiotherapy is the main treatment of rotator cuff disease. This includes daily shoulder stretches and strengthening exercises. Antiinflammatory painkiller (such as ibuprofen) or paracetamol may help. Steroid injection into the subacromial space can help to relieve pain if rest and exercises on their own don't help. But it's still important to do shoulder exercises. If conservative treatment fails, an operation called a subacromial decompression may be an option. The operation involves widening the space around the rotator cuff tendons, so that it doesn't rub or catch. If the tendons are torn, the surgeon may be able to repair it during the operation. If rotator cuff disorders are adequately treated, there can be complete recovery. Recovery can take at least six months and is often longer than this. At Avicenna Clinic, we have a range of specialist consultants, operating theatre for surgical procedures and superior in-house imaging facilities –including state-of-the-art MRI, ultrasound and X-ray scanning equipment. We can assess and diagnose all cases of acute and chronic pain quickly and deliver comprehensive treatment plans tailored to you. n To book a consultation or for more information on treating your pain and explore the other available services to help you, contact Avicenna Clinic on 0330 2020597 or see Or visit North Street, Peterborough PE1 2RA.

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moving on: Family Law with Hegarty in 2019 Many people considering a divorce are concerned how it will affect their children, finances and home and are unsure what options they have, says Pavinder Khela, Family Law Solicitor at Hegarty Solicitors...

When a marriage or partnership breaks down it can be one of the most traumatic and emotional times in a person’s life. It can be difficult to know where to begin and there may be many unanswered questions emotionally and practically. Many people considering a divorce are concerned how it will affect their children, finances and home and are unsure what options they have or how the divorce process works. Pavinder Khela, Family Law Solicitor at Hegarty Solicitors explains the options available. Divorce Proceedings

After one year of marriage either spouse may start divorce proceedings. There is only one legal ground for divorce ‘the marriage has broken down irretrievably.’ The facts they can rely upon are ‘adultery’ or allegations of ‘unreasonable behaviour’ against a spouse.

The alternative is waiting between two or five years before being able to issue for a divorce based upon separation for the same length of time. People often ask how long a divorce will take but this is a very difficult question to answer as so much depends on the circumstances of the individuals involved; such as whether agreements can be reached regarding finances and children. The overall timescale for a divorce can be anything from four to 12 months or more. No Fault Divorce

At present, it is not possible to obtain a ‘no fault divorce’ within the UK, however, there are however a number of ways to make the divorce process less costly and to help resolve issues amicably out of court by using Resolution accredited or Collaboratively trained lawyers. Finding a Resolution

Resolution is a family law association which promotes a non-confrontational approach to resolving family problems. Members sign up to codes of conduct which requires they conduct matters in a constructive and non-confrontational manner to reach a resolution. Solicitors who have acquired specialist accreditation with Resolution will have shown they have experience, knowledge and demonstrative skills in family law.

The Collaborative Approach

The Collaborative process is an alternative to the traditional process and eliminates the need to go to court, which can be a lengthy and emotive experience. Using the collaborative approach, each party appoints a collaboratively trained lawyer and through a number of face to face meetings the lawyers and parties discuss matters arising out of their separation and how those matters may be resolved. Parties are encouraged to sign a ‘Participation Agreement’ to agree in writing to try and reach a reasonable settlement without going to court. The advantage of the collaborative approach is that it gives couples the opportunity to reach agreement through discussion rather than conflict and means they retain control over their future.

Even if the parties decide that the Collaborative process is not for them, adopting a less adversarial approach is usually preferable and can help the parties go forward in a positive way and save on a potentially very expensive legal process. Online Divorce

The Ministry of Justice launched an online divorce service last year which allows couples to file for a divorce online without the need for a solicitor. However, it does not have to be an ‘either or’ scenario. Having taken legal advice at an early stage, you may well decide that you are able to proceed with the divorce yourself.

However, it is important to be aware that the online divorce service will only bring about an end to your Marriage/Civil Partnership, it will not deal with issues relating to your assets or finances, nor will it deal with the arrangements for any children. If you need to come to an agreement on issues such as who your children will live with and who will have ownership of the shared property or assets, a solicitors can inform you about your rights, and present all of the options that are available in relation to finances and children. n

Pavinder Khela is a Resolution accredited family solicitor and has over 15 years’ experience in family law. To speak to Pavinder about your situation or to arrange a fixed fee initial meeting for just £100+VAT call 01780 750956 or email Hegarty Solicitors has offices in Stamford, Oakham and Peterborough. Visit 145

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Give the Gift of Stamford & Rutland

It’s easy to subscribe to the area’s Finest Magazines, either to enjoy yourself, or to be delivered to a friend or loved one as a Gift Subscription throughout 2019. 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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to feature your event call 01529 469977. our magazines are free to read online, so you can share the magazine with your friends. Visit 147

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BARNSDALE LODGE New Year’s Eve celebrations were in full swing at Exton’s Barnsdale Lodge when our photographer arrived...

to feature your event call 01529 469977 to speak to our events desk, or email

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HAMBLETON HALL We celebrated New Year’s Eve in style at Hambleton Hall... so did these guests!

to feature your event call 01529 469977 to speak to our events desk, or email

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With fresh technology, more room in the cabin and the option of seven seats, BMW’s new X5 is ready to take the fight to a host of new luxury 4x4s equally adept in the field as on the school run...

It was 20-odd years ago that BMW launched its landmark X5 model. Unveiled just a couple of years after Mercedes Benz’s ML, it entered a market of few competitors. It pre-dated the Porsche Cayenne by three years and the Audi Q7, rufty-tufty Discovery 3 and Range Rover Sport models by more than five years. At the same time it undercut the price point of Range Rover’s Vogue considerably. One of the first 4x4s to major on more road-biased handling and on affordable luxury against the Range Rover Vogue, X5 was an instant success and that success has not abated through a second version sold from 2006-2013 and a mark three model sold from 2013-2018.

But in 20 years the 4x4 SUV market has changed immeasurably. With more competitors than ever, a new fourth generation X5 has to be sharper to drive, posher to sit in and better to own than ever in order to stave off its would-be rivals. This king is dead... long live the king. A new model reaches showrooms this month with an all-new platform and a sales target of about 200,000 a year.

From the outside it’s a controversial makeover. A deeper front grille gives the X5 a bit of a buck-toothed look, whilst taller dimensions give it lanky proportions. Any reservations though are forgotten once you see the results of the cabin makeover. >>


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>> As few buttons as possible line the dash, with only key HVAC and stereo controls remaining as physical buttons. Other controls function via the iDrive rotary controller.

Commensurate with the most modern interiors are twin configurable screens and digital instruments plus the ubiquitous wi-fi hotspot and a slew of ‘connected services.’

The cabin isn’t quite as cleanly designed as the Range Rover Velar, but it’s as solidly built and beautiful to touch as any controls you’re likely to experience and it does a good job of neatly integrating technology.

What is impressive is the amount of standard equipment the car comes with. For the first time in its life the X5 is available with a seven seat option. 154

“All models have all-wheel drive, eight speed automatic gearboxes and six-cylinder engines so there’s no shortage of power...” All hail the bundled options packages; a Comfort package (£2,350) or Comfort Plus package (£4,750) are likely to solve only first world problems with stuff like ventilated seats, heated cup holders and soft-close doors.

We won’t be ticking that optional extra, nor the off-road package which features off-road modes and a diff lock. It still won’t leave drivers who go off the beaten track breathing a sigh of relief that they chose an X5 over a Discovery. The latter is still vastly preferable when the tarmac expires.

All models have all-wheel drive, eight speed automatic gearboxes and six-cylinder engines so there’s no shortage of power so we’d avoid larger-engined models or M-Sport models with their hard ride for that matter. Opt for the base model xDrive 30d xLine and perhaps add a few options. With the current trend for engine downsizing, it’s possible - inevitable - that a 2.0 four cylinder engine or plug-in hybrid X5 will be along soon though. Waiting for one of those could prove a shrewder course of action. n

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Four Wheel Drive, Seven Seats: Room for the whole family...

Mercedes GLE 300d 4Matic £56,795: It’s the newest model here with evolutionary rather than revolutionary design on the outside but a superb new interior boasting the latest Mercedes design touches on the inside. Arguably the better looking car externally and perhaps internally - except for the odd little row of four rectangular air vents that spoil an otherwise lovely interior. For the price you get a 2.0V4 engine, seven seats with four zone air con, all wheel drive, and a generous equipment roster. 46mpg, 0-60mph 7.2 secs. n

Audi Q7 45TDi Sport £53,250: Audi’s Q7 is keenly priced, but add the Parking Assistance and Touring packs for the latest autonomous cruising and driving technology... you’ll certainly thank us for the former, given the car’s five metre length. Seven seats are standard, along with heated electrically adjustable leather seats, all wheel drive, Audi’s Virtual Cockpit digital displays, sat nav, a powered tailgate and a rear view camera. With a 3.0V6 engine and eight-speed automatic gearbox, you’ll achieve 41.5mpg and reach 60mph in 7.3 seconds. n

BMW X5 3.0 V6 XLINE Price: £57,495 (xDrive 30d xLine). Engine: 3.0 litre six-cylinder. Performance: 0-60mph 6.5 secs 155 mph top speed. Economy: 45.6mpg (combined). Equipment: Auto lights and wipers, heated leather, electrically-adjustable seats. Sat nav, DAB stereo, automatic tailgate, Bluetooth and wireless phone charging. n

Land Rover Discovery 2.0V4 240hp £54,305: If you’re heading off the beaten track, Land Rover’s Discovery is still the class-leader. It has low-range gears, adjustable Terrain Response settings and air suspension. Here the car has just four cylinders and displaces just two litres. Better-equipped HSE variants are more expensive, however you still get seven seats, 360° parking assistance, navigation and heated electric leather seats. 60mph is reached in a slightly slower 8.3 seconds, and Discovery will achieved just 37.7mpg, but it’s unsurpassed off road. n


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A Legend Reborn for the 21st Century

e shape of the Porsche 911 has remained instantly recognisable since its launch in 1963, but a range of challengers - and the desirability of its own Cayman - have meant a new model has had to be created for the 21st century Society, technology and motoring. All have changed dramatically since 1963 when the first Porsche 911 rolled off the production lines in Stuttgart. e 911’s formula of a rearengined 2+2 sports car with six pots of power may have remained and its design may have evolved slowly, but ever more dramatic changes are demanded of the 911 to keep up with new driving technology, a move towards hybridisation and to fend off rivals like BMW’s i8 and Jaguar’s F-Type. So here is a new 911, one for the 21st century. It’s ready for hybrid power, newly endowed with fancy LED lights and dripping in technology like adaptive cruise control, parking assistance and surround view cameras to keep up with luxurious GTs as well as more hardcore sports cars. Currently only two models are available; a Carrera S and Carrera 4S, with two and four wheel drive respectively.

Gradually the range will grow to include non-S versions, convertible, turbo, targa and GT variants and all of the dizzyingly different permutations thereof.

Porsche 911

Price From: £93,110, on sale now.

Engine: 3.0 straight six, rear wheel drive, eight-speed automatic. Performance: 0-60mph 3.7 seconds. 190mph top speed.

Weight: 1590kg. Power: 530Nm.

911 has always majored on providing a very connected, visceral, physically tangible driving experience. at won’t change with the new 911 Carrera S. Engine displacement is slightly smaller with a six-cylinder 3.0 unit ensuring 60mph in dealt with in 3.7 seconds. Top speed is a track-worrying 191mph, and conservative drivers can expect 32mpg, a figure likely to plummet if you begin having fun on continental Autobahns where such speeds are permitted. Our verdict on the new 911 then? More of the same; handing excellence, one of the most rewarding driving experiences and performance that’s nothing short of breathtaking. n

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Up to 1300cc


£169.95† £199.95†

1300cc - 2000cc


£179.95† £209.95†

Above 2000cc or Diesel


£199.95† £219.95†

Commercial & Motorhome




MOT only £25 with Major Service. All prices include labour, materials, consumable & VAT. 10% extra for 6 & 8 cylinder cars. † 20% extra for replacement of platinum plugs.

APPROVED DEALER LEVEL SERVICING We can service any make or model of car under manufacturers warranty, save money and keep your warrantly – ask us for a quote

LOYALTY CARD 10% Discount and FEE MOT for life of the vehicle for only £59.95 – ask for details


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Women lead the search for new homes COUPLES IN THE AREA KEEN FOR NEW HOMES SAYS DEVELOPER LARKFLEET OAKHAM Research carried out by housebuilder Larkfleet Homes and a number of media partners has revealed that, when it comes to finding a new family home, if there is one person ‘in charge’ it is women who take the lead. A survey found that in the majority of households there is shared responsibility for the search for a new home, with even the children playing a role in some cases. In almost 70 per cent of households there is no clear leader in the property search. However, where there is one individual leading the search it is likely to be a woman. This is the case in more than 30 per cent of households. In only a very small number of mixed gender households is it a man taking the lead. The research also identified a strong role for extended families in both searching and

decision-making by first-time buyers with parents (in particular) being heavily involved. Larkfleet CEO Karl Hick said: “It is important that we understand our customers,

Lottsofwine, lotts of pleasure, from online wine business... “A PASSION FOR SOURCING EXCELLENT WINES THAT DON’T COST THE EARTH!”


what they are looking for in a new home – and who is doing the looking.” “As with any business, our success comes from meeting the needs of our customers.”

“And the first step is to find out what those needs are.” n Larkfleet Homes has developments in 10 locations including Oakham, and Peterborough. For details see

OAKHAM “Lottsofwine is a new online business based on the Leicestershire & Rutland border, with a passion for sourcing excellent wines that don’t cost the earth and are a little different to most on the market.” “For many years I have been fascinated with the huge choice this industry offers, and the advances in winemaking which an mean improved quality of wine at affordable prices.” “I’ve used my WSET knowledge and passion for wine to source a selection of great combinations of ‘old and new world’ to share this ethos with you. Having met the producers

over a glass or two of their delicious wines, this has given me the insight to understand what drives them, their approach to conscientious viticulture and why they love doing what they do.” “The wines selected each have their own personality and perfectly demonstrate how the same grape in the same country and climate can taste so differently. I do hope you enjoy our wines as much as we do, says Stephen Lott.” n Finally, we have a beautiful venue where we do fun wine tasting events. For more information please contact us;; 07810 71859.

FROM PROM QUEEN TO BRIDAL COUTURE With prom season shopping in full swing, Anna Couture Boutique on Cheyne Lane in Stamford, has the latest prom gown ready to wear collections from a handpicked range of luxury design houses. Exclusive designs are not repeated so prom girls can party the night away knowing that their gown is the only one in the area. As skilled couturiers, STAMFORD

Atelier House of Anna Couture will be happy to make any girl’s dream come true with a bespoke gown using their own design. From the design to fabrics and colours, each couture prom gown is created in our workrooms on St Martins which is housed above our bridal salon, Anna Couture Brides, and features the company’s own designer bridal label Chanticleer Brides. Anna and her team have created gowns in all areas of the fashion industry as well as costumes for film and theatre. Professional stylists and dressmakers can help you choose the perfect gown for your special occasion, including bridesmaids and mothers of the bride and groom. n Anna Couture Boutique, 17c Cheyne Lane, Stamford PE9 2DG. Call 01780 765 174. Anna Couture Brides, 8 St Martins, Stamford PE9 2LF. Call 01780 762614

Rutland business recognised for energy efficiency efforts


Schoolchildren protected by local housebuilder...

COTTESMORE Pupils at St Nicholas Primary School in Cottesmore have received a highvisibility bag tag each from local housebuilder Lovell Homes, to help them stay safe during the darker months. Leading developer Lovell Homes is currently building at its nearby Greetham Gardens development, offering a beautiful selection of 34 three, four and five-bedroom detached homes just off Oakham Road in Greetham. n

£1,800,000 Sought

Anna Couture

RUTLAND HOUSE COMMUNITY TRUST is seeking £1.8m to help it provide better facilities for adults with learning difficulties. The group has planning permission to build a new accommodation block and improve facilities and is appealing for help from local fundraisers. n

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RUTLAND Rutland-based logistics business CS Ellis welcomed members of the Business Energy Efficiency (BEE) programme to mark their recent efforts to reduce energy use. The South Luffenham based firm were keen to understand how they might be able to improve energy efficiency at their site and requested the support of one of BEE’s energy advisors. Following a site visit, CS Ellis submitted a grant application to BEE towards the costs of its energy saving plans and were successful in securing a £6,139 contribution towards project costs. n For more information on the area’s Business Energy & Efficiency, see



BUSINESS GROWTH AIM FOR AREA AT BUSINESS BREAKFAST... Register now to be a part of South Kesteven’s InvestSK business networking events in 2019 to keep up to date with economic growth That’s the message from South Kesteven District Council which is hosting InvestSK networking events throughout 2019.

Steve Bowyer, chief executive of InvestSK, said: “Since we launched our series of Business Breakfasts last May, they’ve been growing in popularity and now regularly attract around 80 delegates. These are great, free networking events which we rotate around the district so we can meet a wide range of companies and I’m looking forward to welcoming lots of local business people to our next one in Stamford.”

n To register, to attend the events, visit


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Fed up with your hard water & scale? Having a new bathroom or kitchen fitted? Do you have sensitive skin/eczema?


WATER SOFTENER • We supply, repair & install all types of water softeners & drinking systems • Do you want to prolong the life of your appliances & save money? • Salt deliveries available


01778 394830


New Rutland File (200) MANDY.qxp 23/01/2019 13:32 Page 163

New Rutland File (200) MANDY.qxp 23/01/2019 13:33 Page 164

Profile for Pride Magazines Ltd

Stamford Pride March 2019  

For more information call 01529 469977.

Stamford Pride March 2019  

For more information call 01529 469977.