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August 2018

FESTIVAL FEVER Great Gear for Gigs

DRESSING BEYONCE OSMAN YOUSEFZADA

Aktar Islam’s Opheem SUMMER HEALTH

Carry On Camping ARCADIA ROOTS

BECKY HILL

THE VOICE SENSATION ON NEW RELEASES, COLLABORATIONS AND PINK GUITARS


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EDITOR’S VIEW

I

’m not big into camping. I think it was getting verrucas in a shower block on a French site that finally did for me. The tent and accompanying equipment were packed away, never to be seen again. But I have lots of friends who swear by getting away from it all and back to nature under canvas. If you are pitching up at some point over the next couple of months, at one of the many brilliant festivals in the region or further afield or on hols, you want to be wearing the right gear and carrying the right kit. Camping has become like any other leisure pursuit – style matters and technology rules. Our Style and Leisure sections are devoted to what to wear for girls and guys that is bang on trend to make you a festival fashion icon, and what to pack in the boot of the car to make camping a fun, enjoyable experience for singles and families alike. While we’re talking the great outdoors, our motoring writer Sue Cooke also hits the trail in this issue, test-driving Mitsubishi’s new Shogun Sport. Sue’s drive up steep hills and down into deep, watery mud pits, brought memories flooding back, quite literally, of my time editing Britain’s biggest car title, Auto Express. Land Rover, who build world-class 4x4s right here in the Midlands, would let motoring journalists loose in their new models on their own daunting off-road tracks. Some of the scariest, yet most rewarding, driving experiences you could ever imagine. If you fancy having a go yourself, there are a number of great off-road driving courses in the region and beyond you can Google, including some run by Land Rover itself. I highly recommend.

s n h o J d i Dav

visit www.brumliving.co.uk @brum_living

/bhamliving

Cover image: Becky Hill

EDITOR: David Johns david@brumliving.co.uk FEATURES EDITOR: Shelley Carter shelley@brumliving.co.uk DESIGNER: Tracy Duffy

CONTRIBUTORS: Rob Price, Sue Cooke, Lisa Melvin, Hywel Davies ACCOUNT MANAGER: Jane Morris jane@brumliving.co.uk PHOTOGRAPHY: David Morphew, Andrew Llewellyn PUBLISHING DIRECTOR: Jonathan Carter

Rock Hopper Media Limited Burleigh House, 23 Tagwell Road, Droitwich WR9 7BN tel 01905 771110 © Rock Hopper Media Ltd. Birmingham Living is published monthly by Rock Hopper Media Ltd and printed by Buxton Press. Views and opinions expressed by authors and services and products offered by advertisers are not specifically endorsed by Rock Hopper Media Ltd. Reproduction in whole or in part of the contents of Birmingham Living without written permission is strictly prohibited.

SUBSCRIPTIONS: The subscription rate (post paid) is £24 for one year (12 issues). Subscriptions 01905 771110 ISSN 2051-8560

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INSIDE

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Highlights

Becky Hill

The singer songwriter talks The Voice, hit singles and playing a pink guitar in her bedroom

The Dressmaker’s Son Fashion designer Osman Yousefzada’s journey from Balsall Heath to dressing Beyonce

Bringing Home The Bacon Head chef Tom Shepherd reveals inspirations – from Gordon Ramsay to the bacon butty

Food & Drink News, reviews and recipes from Brum’s restaurant scene, plus best Sardinian wines

Festival Fashion Our season’s hottest finds will set you up for the perfect field day. So, watch out Jo Whiley!

Health Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about yoga, plus taking the plunge in the pool

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CONTENTS

Best of the Rest

44 56 58 64 72 82 august 2018

Leisure

Despite the midges and blistering heat, there’s something about camping that appeals

Motoring Ain’t no mountain high enough as Sue Cooke goes climbing in Mitsubishi’s Shogun Sport

Young, Gifted & Brummie Midlands band Arcadia Roots talk Glasto, dream gigs and drumming through West Africa

Business Waking up to Snoozle, plus news and views from the commercial community

Social Scene The pages that picture who’s been out and about networking in Birmingham this month

In The City The Mailbox’s David Pardoe on what makes Birmingham great – and what could be better…

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NEWS

CULTURE CASH A new fund has been launched to help individuals, social enterprises, community groups and artistic and cultural organisations prepare for Coventry’s year as UK City of Culture in 2021. The Coventry UK City of Culture Fund has been launched by Coventry City of Culture Trust in partnership with the Heart of England Community Foundation, which will administer the fund which offers grants of up to £10,000 to artists, charities and other organisations. CULTURE CLUB: Heart of England chief executive Tina Costello, left, and Emma Harrabin of Coventry City of Culture Trust

BRINGING YOU THE BRIGHTEST AND MOST COLOURFUL STORIES FROM ACROSS THE CITY EACH MONTH

NEWS GARETH’S BRUM AID

HALL CHANGE

The magic created by England football manager Gareth Southgate has rubbed off on Birmingham. The soccer boss gave his backing in a special video for his old Crystal Palace teammate Geoff Thomas and Birmingham-based charity Cure Leukaemia to win Deutsche Bank’s Charities of the Year support. The bank is producing a mobile app for the charity to give help to leukaemia patients worldwide.

The Concert Hall at Royal Birmingham Conservatoire has been renamed the Bradshaw Hall in recognition of a £1million gift from a local entrepreneur. The donation from Dr Keith Bradshaw will fund strategic priorities at the music and acting college, including support for student scholarships, educational outreach with children and young people across the West Midlands, teaching posts and visiting fellowships. Aston-born Dr Bradshaw is cofounder of the Listers car dealership and coowner of Halesowen-based Laney Headstock, which produces a range of musical instruments.

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NEWS

IT’S A KNOCKOUT! Midlands Air Ambulance Charity is staging its version of the hit TV show It’s a Knockout to raise funds for its life-saving service. The event at Wythall, Birmingham on Sunday 12 August, will see 24 teams of 10 compete across nine different inflatable obstacle courses, including the Teletubbie Challenge, Canon Run, Boat Race, Foam Pit and Dam Buster Run. More details: Abbie Hawkins on 07841 489157 or at midlandsairambulance.com

WINNING TEAM

IN BRIEF PING-PONG TIME ROYAL VISITOR Birmingham’s world-leading Centre for Clinical Haematology at Queen Elizabeth Hospital was given the royal seal of approval when Prince Edward, the Earl of Wessex, toured the unit and unveiled a commemorative plaque.

GOLD WARRIOR Wounded army veteran Steve Rice, 33, from Sutton Coldfield won an impressive haul of one gold and four bronze medals as part of Team UK at the Warrior Games adaptive sports competition for injured military personnel held in Colorado.

SCREEN STARS After a successful run last year, Birmingham Botanical Gardens is hosting a further six nights of open air cinema for all the family this summer with its Cult Screens experience featuring some of Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters. The shows run

Anyone for a spot of pingpong? Birmingham has just the thing with the opening of SERVE, a new social entertainment venue in Temple Row. As well as 17 ping-pong tables, there’s food offerings and a bar. SERVE is open day and night, including late-night cocktails, and is the brainchild of James Day and David Smith. It is the first venue of its kind outside London.

Star players at Birmingham

City Women’s FC are joining an initiative to support victims of violence and abuse. They have teamed up with Birmingham and Solihull Women’s Aid which will see the charity advertise and fund-raise with the club. Maureen Connolly, BSWA’s chief executive, said: “We hope to see our organisation go from strength to strength thanks to this new partnership, raising our profile and awareness of the work we do.”

IN TUNE WITH LGBT CHARITY Birmingham Gay Symphony Orchestra played to an audience of more than 150 at a special performance in support of LGBT charity, Naz and Matt Foundation. BGSO chair and leader of the orchestra, Kat Galbraith said: “It was a privilege to support the Foundation at our 10th anniversary concert – they bring people together and that’s our mission too.” BGSO’s next performance will be at St Paul’s in the Jewellery Quarter on 15 December. Details at bgso.org.uk

until 15 September.

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NEWS

DIGBETH DATE A new series of outdoor concerts is coming to Birmingham. Digbeth Arena will host a stellar programme of artists across weekends over August and September, including James Arthur, Texas + Imelda May, Garbage and many more! Brian Wilson, a founding member of the Beach Boys, will be performing the iconic Pet Sounds album in full on Friday 24 August to open the Skyline Series in Birmingham. Details, tickets at www.skyline-series.com

INSPIRING DAY Hundreds of families were treated to a day of fun, creative and sporting activities as Birmingham City University opened its doors for its second Inspired Family Day. More than 1,000 visitors were given the chance to try a number of hands-on activities at the University’s City Centre Campus, including drawing Roald Dahl’s Matilda, creating a theatre production with professional actors and programming their own video games. Sporting activities included a World Cup themed penalty shootout and wheelchair rugby.

SCOTTY’S LITTLE SOLDIER

BAGGIES ON THE CANVAS

Corporate hospitality and events company Eventmasters is marching in time with Scotty’s Little Soldiers. The firm, with offices in Birmingham, is set to help raise vital funds for the children’s Armed Forces charity. Launched by war widow Nikki Scott in 2010, Scotty’s Little Soldiers supports children across the UK. It was set up in memory of Nikki’s husband and father to her two children, Cpl Lee Scott, after he was killed in Afghanistan in 2009. More details: http://scottyslittlesoldiers.co.uk/

One of the UK’s greatest modern artists has switched from canvas to football pitch to chart the trials and tribulations of West Bromwich Albion FC. Tai Shan Schierenberg – who is also a judge on Sky Arts’ Portrait Artist of the Year presented by Brummie comedian Frank Skinner – stars in Channel Four’s The Football Club: Artist in Residence which follows West Brom behind the scenes in its turbulent last season before relegation from the Premier League.

august 2018

PLAY ACTION HERO

DADDY’S GIRL: Cpl Lee Scott’s daughter Brooke

Action Man is going into battle as one of the stars of a new exhibition which charts the history of children’s play from 2,000 years ago to the present day. The Sixties’ superhero is among 200 exhibits on show at Play: An Exploration of Toys, Games & Fun at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum which runs until 23 September. Running alongside is a video games exhibition dedicated to Twycross-based Rare, entitled Rare: From 8-bit to Xbox One.

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BRIGHT YOUNG THINGS The National Youth Ballet is returning to Birmingham to perform seven ballets in one programme entitled Bright Young Things. The company, featuring more than 100 young dancers aged from nine to 18, will perform at the Crescent Theatre on 30 and 31 August following a two-week residential programme at Elmhurst Ballet School, Edgbaston.

WALL-TO-WALL ART An artwork on a wall in the heart of Digbeth’s Custard Factory celebrated movie icons from the 1930s to the present day. The impressive piece by local street and graffiti artist Andy Mills was commissioned by the Odeon to celebrate the cinema’s connection with some of the greatest moments in Birmingham’s film history. The work took 35 hours to spray paint, and includes the likes of the Beatles who famously played the Odeon Birmingham in 1965.

MAX MISSION A 17-year-old refugee from Sudan has taken up volunteering to return the kindness he was shown by a charity project helping young

PICKLE AND PUMPKIN

The teenager named Max is among 118 young

Meet mad scientists Professor Pickle and Doctor Pumpkin. The dastardly

supported in the city through Surviving to

duo are giving youngsters a unique introduction to the world of hi-tech

Thriving, a partnership between British Red

motor mechanicals at AutoScience LIVE shows at the British Motor

Cross, the Refugee Council and UpRising.

Museum, Gaydon. The sessions feature as the museum celebrates Land Rover’s 70th anniversary with a special display of famous LR vehicles which runs until 2 September. For the creative types there is the opportunity to colour in a Land Rover No 1 or even make your own Land Rover model!

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refugees and asylum seekers in Birmingham. refugees seeking asylum who are being

GOT ANY NEWS?

Email your news and pictures to editor@brumliving.co.uk

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I Could Get Used To This SINGER SONGWRITER SENSATION BECKY HILL TALKS TO DAVID JOHNS ABOUT THE VOICE, CHART-TOPPING COLLABORATIONS, HER NEW HIT SINGLES – AND PLAYING A PINK GUITAR IN HER BEDROOM IN BEWDLEY f you ever doubted that the music business is a tough gig, ask Becky Hill. The singer songwriter has experienced just about every emotion since reaching the semi-final of the first series of TV’s The Voice as an 18-year-old six years ago – from the highs of a number one hit single to the lows of being dropped by her first record company. A stint setting up and running her own record label and collaborating with the likes of Rudimental, Wilkinson and Matoma has seen Becky go from strength to strength with a new record deal with Polydor and in June the release of the single Sunrise In The East, which was brilliantly received by critics and fans alike.

I

NEW YORK We caught up with Becky just hours after she returned from five days in New York where she filmed

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the video for her next single, I Could Get Used To This, which is due out next month. And the excitement in her life right now is obvious – as is the determination to get her music sounding just the way she wants. “I’m a perfectionist.” she says, “and while we were filming, I was listening to the new song and thinking the production of the music needed slightly changing. I am a very hands-on person and I think some of that comes from having had to organise and run my own label for a bit. I want to be involved in everything.” Becky’s music journey started way back with her family living in Bewdley and her mum buying her a pink guitar. Becky’s brother who she says she ‘idolised’ could play and Becky was determined to play too. She proceeded to learn the basic chords in quick time and by age 13 she had written her first single. “By 16, I had composed my first album,” she says with great pride.

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SHAKING TREES After impressing her friends, Becky became part of what she admits was ‘one of the most bizarre bands ever’. “There was a 48year-old balding drummer, a 26-year-old Russian chef, a scientist who played the piano – and me! We called ourselves the Shaking Trees,” she recalls. Then while working at her local, the Cock and Magpie, Becky did an open mike session and someone said she should go and audition for a new series called The Voice. “I arrived at the audition slightly the worse for wear from the night before, and with the lyrics to John Legend’s Ordinary People written on the back of my hand so I wouldn’t screw up,” she says with a laugh. Becky impressed the judges, including mentor Jessie J, and got as far as the semi-final in 2012 before losing out in the public vote. But while many of the show’s winners have slipped to obscurity Becky made her mark, becoming the first Voice contestant to achieve a number one hit. After a short-lived deal with Parlophone, she set up her own record label called Eko Records which attracted the attention of Polydor, who signed her nine months ago.

MY MUSIC COMES IN VARIOUS WAYS.

SOMETIMES I COME UP WITH A TITLE, USUALLY JUST

BEFORE I FALL ASLEEP AT NIGHT – SO I RUSH AROUND TO JOT IT DOWN OTHERWISE I FORGET WHAT IT WAS

ENERGISING “They could see I was making waves independently and offered me a deal reflecting that,” she says. “They treat me as if I am an equal. They respect me because I ran my own label and because I want to know things like what’s the budget for something.” The partnership is energising Becky who said: “I am so excited about my new music.” She describes her music as ‘timeless electro pop with great storytelling’. “My music comes to me in various ways. Sometimes I come up with a title, usually just before I fall asleep at night – so I rush around to jot it down otherwise I forget what it was. Other times, I can come up with the melodies first. I also find creative sessions with other people really useful too.” She explains that as someone who first started writing music on her own in her bedroom at home, she craves ‘validation’ of her songs. “I’m someone who likes other people to say ‘that’s good!’ You have to be very humble in this job as it takes a massive number

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of people to determine if your song is a hit or not. If you don’t connect with people you can’t be the greatest you can be and it doesn’t work.” FAMILY MATTERS Becky lives in London “because you have to in this business”. She says she has tried in the past to avoid the move from the Midlands but it just didn’t work. “If I could do my job in Bewdley I would because I adore it there and all the family are there or thereabouts. I come back as often as I can, and I wish it could be more often because I don’t feel that I see them enough, but it’s so difficult.” Becky’s parents, grandparents and brother all still live in Bewdley, while her two sisters are in Worcester and Lichfield. Her other brother is also in London. Home is where Becky can truly unwind and relax because as she admits: “I freak out with every release and I question every song I put out. It’s really hard work but it’s the job I love.” That hard work is only set to get even tougher as Becky releases the new single

and then an album and also appears at a line-up of festivals and gigs, including shows with Pete Tong and an appearance in October at the O2 Institute in Birmingham.

MAGIC EIGHT “My dream is to write classic, timeless songs that people will always remember,” says Becky. “And I want to write eight albums throughout my career, how ever long that may be.” Becky says the number ‘eight’ in a powerful, assured tone. Why eight? Why so sure? “It just sounds a great number, the right number and a very definitive number,” she explains… I Hear Becky’s new single I Could Get Used To This, out in September. See Becky in Birmingham at the O2 Institute on 12 October, details: www.academymusicgroup.com

MY FIRST BAND HAD A 48-YEAR-

OLD BALDING DRUMMER, A 26-YEAR-OLD

RUSSIAN CHEF, A SCIENTIST WHO PLAYED THE PIANO – AND ME! WE CALLED OURSELVES THE SHAKING TREES

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FEATURE

THE DRESSMAKER’S SON DESIGNER OSMAN YOUSEFZADA TALKS TO SHELLEY

CARTER ABOUT LIFE GROWING UP IN A CONSERVATIVE

MUSLIM HOME IN BALSALL HEATH IN THE EIGHTIES TO THE FABULOUSNESS OF FIVE FLOORS IN FITZROVIA TODAY

sman has dressed some of the most famous women on the planet including Lady Gaga, Beyonce and Thandie Newton among others and has just opened his first flagship store in London. Last month he took a leap into the art world taking over the third floor of the IKON Gallery with his multi-disciplinary exhibition, Being Somewhere Else, sponsored by Selfridges. He’s also finding time to write his memoir focusing on growing up in a less than idyllic environment in Brum, which should be a fascinating read. The son of a dressmaker, it’s perhaps no surprise Osman went down a fashion route and studied, somewhat fleetingly, at Central Saint Martins after graduating in anthropology from Cambridge. Dropping out of the fashion design course, Osman took a job at Joseph and soon after was offered £5,000 to launch his own collection by Tom Singh, founder of New Look who saw his potential.

O

FASHION BUG Osman made his debut at London Fashion Week in 2008 and was nominated for the prestigious Designs of the Year award from the Design Museum which recognises the best 100 designs globally. In the same year he was given the British Fashion Council (BFC) Newgen award for three consecutive seasons and was shortlisted for the BFC/Vogue designer fashion fund in 2011, 2013 and 2015. Osman remembers interesting characters wafting in and out of his family home as a boy and being surrounded by rich fabric and creativity. “There were these amazing Asian women. Colourful, fantastic and fun and that gave me the bug.” Despite these happy memories, Osman didn’t have the best time growing up in Balsall Heath and recalls gangs hanging around. He says: “It wasn’t idyllic. Let’s just say that!” However, it’s a place he calls home and visits frequently to see his

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ageing parents. Of his success, Osman says his parents don’t really understand what he does. He explains: “My parents are both illiterate and as a result they can’t fathom what it is I actually do.” FLYING HIGH While Osman is flying high with his flagship store sprawled over five floors of a Fitzrovia townhouse of which he says was daunting, he’s also acutely aware of the other side of the fashion industry which is not so glitzy, highlighted in Being Somewhere Else. The exhibition explored socio-political tensions in the contemporary fashion world including sustainability and fast fashion, cultural displacement and immigration. He explains: “It’s the other side of fashion behind the glamour, behind the allure. But it’s still quite real and very relevant.” To coincide with the exhibition Osman curated a four-day event titled the Migrant Festival which he describes as a grass roots celebration of diversity. As the son of migrants, shining a spotlight on migration and the issues that come with that are important to Osman as is celebrating the upsides. The events are an extension of his annual art and culture publication titled The Collective which explores the intersection of art and fashion in a photographical series with insightful essays. The flagship store reflects Osman’s interest in art too featuring a rotating gallery space with art pieces available to buy.

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COLUMN INCHES Inspiration comes from many places. Osman says: “It’s a little bit Indian fabric shop meets elegant tailoring.” You can see what he means. The structure of his pieces is one of the things that’s so striking and flattering and is why celebs are queuing up to wear the brand. Having dressed so many of the world’s Alisters I wonder if there’s anyone left he’d love to dress? “Cate Blanchett would be lovely.” The craziness of Beyonce wearing Osman to the Grammys was berserk. “The level of column inches was insane! It was a really nice moment and the reaction was quite unexpected.” HOME TOWN Of his home town and the changes since he was a boy, Osman has high praise. “Birmingham is amazing. It’s this rich melting pot of multiculturalism.” Of the fashion scene here, he says: “London is clearly the UK’s fashion hub. Birmingham is too close to the capital to have its own fashion hub, but it’s has other strengths. It’s like the workshop of the world.” The progress the city has made since Osman left for London is remarkable and he’s blown away by some aspects not least the transformation of New Street Station and the first impression visitors to the city are treated too. He says: “Grand Central is incredible. London doesn’t have anything close to that.” I

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FOOD & DRINK

BRINGING HOME THE BACON

THERE’S NOTHING AS EXCITING AS THE ARRIVAL OF EACH SEASON’S NEW CROP OF INGREDIENTS FOR ADAM’S HEAD CHEF TOM SHEPHERD – UNLESS IT’S A BACON SARNIE ON A SUNDAY MORNING, OF COURSE! Tell us about your cooking It’s modern, flavour driven, educated, clean and seasonally led. The start of every season excites me when all the new ingredients come into fruition, especially when we work so closely with our suppliers. All the hard work has been done by the growers and producers, we’re the lucky ones who get to finish it off and showcase it to our customers. How did you become a chef? I fell into cooking really. I was a trainee manager at New Hall Hotel in Walmley and part of the training was working for three months in the kitchen. Within a week, I discovered a genuine passion for the environment.

Is the customer always right? At the end of the day the customer is here to try our food and hopefully enjoy it. But we have to accept that we can’t please everyone all the time, as much as we try. Share a cooking tip Make sure meat is always brought to room temperature before cooking – it’s vitally important if you want even cooking throughout your meat. Also once cooked, remember to rest it. What was your favourite food as a kid? Sausage and mash. I literally lived off it and was all I would ever ask for.

Who are your influences?

Food heaven and hell?

The main influence that got me into cooking was Gordon Ramsay. Watching his programmes and seeing his natural desire and demands inspired me greatly. Also, my family. They have always been so supportive and so proud of my achievements.

Heaven is anything rich and indulgent, such as roast pork belly in a great sauce made from its own juices, followed by a large portion of tiramisu. Hell is sea urchins.

What do you eat when at home? I love a bacon sarnie on a Sunday morning and still adore my mom’s roast dinner. I rarely cook on my days off so a takeaway is often on the cards.

Who’s the best chef in the world and why? And who’s the best in Brum? One of my personal favourites is Daniel Humm at Eleven Madison Park in New York. His simplistic approach and level of execution is of the highest I’ve seen and I am lucky enough to be dining there in August. In Birmingham, I love the fact that my generation is coming through the ranks and taking charge of some of the best kitchens in the city. Such as Leo Kattou at Simpsons and Brad Carter and Ben Tesh. I’ve had fantastic meals at both Carters and Folium. 20 birmingham living

What’s the most unusual thing you’ve eaten? I was at a friend’s restaurant and was served chicken’s feet with a wild garlic pesto. The idea was to mop up the pesto using the feet. It wasn’t for me!

If you weren’t a chef, what would you be? Involved in sports in some way, football or motor racing. Maybe a coach or a technician.

What do you recommend from this evening’s menu? Our Best End of Herdwick hogget with English peas, broad beans, mint and goat’s curd. A celebration of everything that is in season right now, and all British. I Adam’s New Oxford House, 16 Waterloo Street, Birmingham, B2 5U. Tel: 0121 296 9417 www.adamsrestaurant.co.uk august 2018


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CHEF’S CORNER

TOM’S HOGGET WITH PEAS, BROAD BEANS, MINT AND GOAT’S CURD INGREDIENTS:

I Herdwick Hogget rack and shoulder (bone separate)

I 100g garden peas I 100g broad beans I 1 bunch of mint I 50g goat’s curd FOR THE SAUCE:

I 2 shallots I 4 cloves garlic I 3 sprigs rosemary

I 150ml Madeira I 75ml brandy

I 1ltr chicken stock

I 150ml red wine

METHOD: Prepare the lamb shoulder and brine in a 10 per cent salt brine for 24

add the bones and fry for a further 2 minutes. Deglaze with all the

hours. Cook it for a further 24 hours at 78 degrees after the brining

alcohol and reduce to a glace, add stock and cook down until desired

process, make sure you wash the shoulder for at least 20 minutes

consistency. Pass through a sieve ready to serve.

before cooking. Once cooked, carefully flake it down and roll it into a

Roast the lamb rack for 8 to 10 minutes at 180 degrees, allow to rest

ballantine (sausage shape) allow to set in the fridge and then slice it

for 10 minutes. While the meat is resting, ensure your sauce is hot

into 1cm thick slices ready to fry in pan later.

and begin to cook the peas, broad beans and fry lamb shoulder disc.

For the sauce, roast the lamb bones for 40 minutes, take out and

Once cooked begin to assemble on a plate, and finish off with a few

drain excess fat. In a large pan, fry the shallots, garlic and rosemary,

spoonfuls of goat’s curd.

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SEASON’S EATINGS

Cherry Clafoutis THIS COLOURFUL SUMMERY PUDDING IS LIGHT AND FLUFFY AND JUST A LITTLE BIT NAUGHTY WHEN SPIKED WITH KIRSCH K, so let’s be honest and a little bit brash about this – Britain produces the finest, tastiest, most adorable fruit in the entire world. Fact. Last month, it was gorgeous strawberries (with luscious cream, of course!). This month, we can sample brilliant British cherries. Try our recipe for a perfect pud that makes the best of the best. Scrumptious… 

O

HOW TO MAKE For the cherries:  450g/1lb ripe cherries, stones removed  3 tbsp caster sugar, plus extra for sprinkling  3 tbsp kirsch (optional) For the batter:  20g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing  2 free-range eggs  3 tbsp caster sugar  ½ tsp vanilla extract  1 heaped tbsp plain flour  1¾fl oz whole milk  2¼fl oz whipping cream  Pinch sea salt

METHOD: Gently mix together the cherries, sugar and kirsch and leave to macerate for two hours. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Grease a baking dish with butter and sprinkle with sugar so that it is evenly coated. Tip out any excess. For the batter, heat the butter in a small pan until it turns a pale hazelnut colour. Don’t let the butter burn. Remove from the heat and set aside in a warm place. In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, sugar and vanilla until creamy. Add the flour, whisk until smooth, then slowly incorporate the milk, cream, salt and warmed butter. Mix the macerated cherries and their juice into the batter. Pour into the prepared baking dish. Bake in the oven for 30 to 35 minutes, or until the top is slightly domed and the blade of a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. To finish, sprinkle with caster sugar and serve warm.

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FOOD & DRINK

NIBBLES and SHORTS

BIRMINGHAM HAS A LIVELY AND BUZZING BAR AND RESTAURANT SCENE. HERE, WE PRESENT OUR INSIDER GUIDE TO WHAT’S GOING ON IN YOUR CITY’S EATERIES AND DRINKING DENS

SWEET TREATS AT SELFRIDGES Award-winning French-style patisserie Bisous Bisous has launched in Selfridges Food Hall, Birmingham, bringing its sweet treats to the city for the first time. The patisserie – whose name means Kisses Kisses – is famed for its French gateaux and fresh tarts and was lauded by chef Jamie Oliver for its macarons, which he said were the best he’d ever tasted.

WINE CAFE UNCORKED

Italian wine café Veeno has opened at Kidderminster’s scenic Riverside development, bringing the authentic Italian ‘Aperitivo’ – the ritual of relaxing with great wine and food with friends – to the region. There’s something for Chef and owner of Original Patty everyone on the wine list, plus Birmingham entrepreneur, Men, Scott O'Byrne, has been crowned craft beers and spirits in case Anthony Duffy, has opened his Britain’s burger champion in a UK-wide wine isn’t your thing. first restaurant, Holy Moly competition run by M&S to find the ultimate patty. Kidderminster is the 19th Veeno Macaroni in Grand Central. Taking inspiration from Birmingham’s food scene, to open in the UK. Founded in 2015, Holy Moly Scott’s winning recipe included maple syrup, Macaroni began as a street food bacon jam and Berkswell cheese with a stall sharing dishes inspired by short rib, chuck steak and Anthony’s visits to Harlem, New bone marrow burger. York. The new restaurant includes the Proper Mac four cheese Slingsby Gin and Birmingham’s Hotel du Vin have teamed up to create new macaroni as well as other varied luxury suites. The Slingsby Ginspiration Suites offer rooms created with the gin lover in mind – from exclusive soft furnishings to living botanicals, mini bar offerings such as Cajun rubbed and copper details. There’s even a grapefruit tree in each suite – one of the roasted chicken. main botanicals used to give Slingsby Gin its citrus kick.

HOLY MOLY MACARONI

GREAT SCOTT IS BURGER KING

SUITE DREAMS, GIN LOVERS

CRUMBS! THE MED COMES TO SUTTON A taste of the Mediterranean in Sutton? Indeed there is, thanks to the new Migas Tapas and Wine Bar. The eatery, on the site of the former Don Diego Tapas Bar, sees the return of the previous owners who ran the restaurant until 2015, achieving Michelin Guide status. It’s the same team behind Edgbaston’s, El Borracho De Oro. Migas is Spanish for ‘breadcrumbs’, by the way…

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From only ÂŁ25

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RESTAURANT REVIEW

1741 COVENTRY ROAD, BIRMINGHAM, B26 1DS. TEL: 0121 764 5519 SMOKEYBARRELS.COM

SMOKEY BARRELS e don’t want fine dining every day and there are times when pulled pork or a cracking burger hit the spot nicely, so we headed to Smokey Barrels for a bit of comfort food and got more than we bargained for. The restaurant has a massive footprint and is decked out largely in wood with decoration hinting at the American smoke house vibe. We visited in the heart of World Cup fever which had gone down a storm. During England games the bar staff had to put on hold their beloved shakes as they’re all made from scratch and take too long to rustle up with such a packed bar. Happy days. We cosied up in a banquette and perused the huge menu. The stateside feel was appealing and the menu followed this theme until we got to a random page of curries. It didn’t seem to fit, but perhaps the owners know their customer base and it’s what they want. An Oreo freak shake was promptly ordered and boy, were we glad we’d settled for one between two. It was massive – there’s a theme here! Chocolately, creamy and er… Oreo-like, it was pretty moreish and a bit like having dessert before the main event. We began to feel a bit mean coming without the kids – they’d be in heaven. I ordered calamari to start which was a bit flabby with a heavy batter and realised pretty quickly that meat is the strong point here. Why fight it? When in Rome and all that. The other half ’s pork belly ribs coated in a sticky bourbon sauce with a hint of chilli were lip-smackingly good.

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Classic Smokey Barrels burger was delicious. A charred bun encased a juicy patty with oozing cheese, plenty of gherkins and a good amount of tasty burger sauce. Sweet potato fries were fantastic – probably could have done with half the portion – and the crunchy slaw was all the things you want from a slaw. A side of pit beans was pleasantly smoky. The brisket cooked low ’n’ slow for 12 hours was brilliantly good, but again a hefty portion. With a choice of sauces we plumped for BBQ. Sweet, sticky, smoky, tender – what’s not to love? Sides of pickles, an onion salad and slaw cut through the richness of the meat. We swerved dessert after the Oreo appetiser. Although it’s a bit out of town Smokey Barrels is worth the trip on those days when you’re hankering after comfort food and good times in a relaxed environment. I

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FOOD & DRINK

PRIMO VINO ITALY PRODUCES SOME CORKING WINES BUT

NONE IS FINER THAN THOSE COMING FROM THE

BEAUTIFUL ISLAND OF SARDINIA, SAYS ROB PRICE

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FOOD & DRINK

was lucky enough to recently attend a wine tasting event that featured a wide range of Sardinian wines. Lucky because I fell in love with these wines. They were characteristically Italian (molto bene) plus they were soft and round, but also fresh with lovely vitality. A joy to drink. Sardinian falls within the Italian wine classification system, with Denominazione di Origine Controllata (e Garantita), DOC(G) being the highest categories, followed by Indicazione Geografica Tipica, IGT and then the humble Vino da Tavola. But as only befits Italy, these wine classifications don’t tell the full story, with some of the country’s best wines (Super Tuscans) falling in the humble table wine category.

I

ROB’S

4TO TRY

Vermentino di Sardegna localia, Melis 2016

A white wine with lots of flavour, tropical fruits and a lovely saline finish. Has a soft texture, and is quite

versatile with food, including spicy cuisine. Available from the Wine Society £8.95 a bottle

Il Solus Carignano

Made with the Carignano grape that originates from

Spain (Cariñena) and grown also in Southern France,

(Carignan). But unlike its European neighbours this one tends to be softer, although is still intensely flavoured. Herbs and black fruits. Majestic sells for £11.99.

Ego – Tenute Delogu 2014

Full-bodied, with spicy intense flavours of cherry, plum, and red berries. Rich and velvety with ripe fruit and

warming alcohol, that is in perfect harmony. Satisfying and easy to drink. Sold by Ital Sardo, £16.

Geo – Tenute Delogu 2014

Made with a blend of Cannonau, Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon. This is my favourite. Great concentration of flavours with a freshness and edge that I really enjoy. Liquorice, redcurrants, with soft ripe tannins. Sold by Ital Sardo, £16.

CRISP ACIDITY And the same can be said for Sardinian wines. Only Vermentino di Gallura is DOCG. It’s a light straw-coloured white wine that’s normally unoaked with crisp acidity, green apple, citrus fruit, and ripe pear. I’m not sure why it’s DOCG. Remember the G stands for guarantee!! There are a few DOCs, with the best know being Cannonau di Sadegna DOC which translates as the Cannonau grape from Sardinia. This grape is better known as Grenache and produces wines that are powerful and easy to drink. Think Chateauneuf-depape. Cannonau is the most widely planted variety on Sardinia with more than 30 per cent mainly in the middle of the island where warm, pebbly soils limit its natural productivity. Lots of alcohol and not much acidity, typical of Grenache. Lovely aromas of dark red berries, plum and tobacco. EXCELLENT REDS Similar to the Italian mainland, Sardinia makes excellent wines at the IGT level as they permit some international grapes to complement local varieties. One such IGT is Isola Dei Nuraghi. It produces a range of white, rose and excellent red wines, with grapes such as Cabernet Sauvignon and Syrah (Shiraz) allowed. Expect a full-bodied, powerful wine with lots of alcohol. One of the rarities (and you’re likely to only come across it on your holidays to Sardinia) is Torbato, a grape originally from Spain. There are less than 80 hectares left in the world. Crisp, light-bodied, quite floral with underlying minerality. SHERRY-LIKE Another usual wine, and particular to this island, is Vernaccia di Oristano, DOC. This is a different variety to the Vernaccia found on mainland Italy. In Sardinia it makes a wide range of wine styles, including both dry and sweet wines and also sherry-like wines aged in a solera. Sardinian wines don’t feature in the main supermarkets. Majestic wines has a couple, as does the Wine Society, but for more choice you’ll need to try some Italian wine specialists, such as Ital Sardo. They have more than 20 different Sardinian wines, including some mixed cases that are a great introduction to the beautiful wines of this island. I Birmingham Wine School is an independent wine education company offering fun informal wine tasting events and Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) courses in Birmingham, Warwick and Milton Keynes city centres. More from Rob Price, 0121 270 7359, or visit www.birminghamwineschool.com

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THE SPIRIT OF THE MOMENT, RUM DOESN’T COME MORE REFRESHING THAN THIS

um is bang on trend right now – and few things are more refreshing in the warmth of summer than a classic mojito. So, let’s get mixing! I

R

ALL YOU NEED TO MIX IT UP BEAUTIFULLY Ingredients:

I 2 parts good quality white rum I ½ fresh lime

I 12 fresh mint leaves

I 2 heaped bar spoons of caster sugar I Dash of soda water I Cubed ice

I Crushed ice To garnish: sprig of fresh mint

To make: Put the four lime wedges into a glass, then add the sugar and muddle. Bruise the mint leaves then add to the muddle lime juice and gently press down. Half fill the glass with crushed ice and pour in rum. Stir the mix together until the sugar dissolves. Top up with crushed ice, a splash of soda water and garnish it with a sprig of mint

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LUNCHSPOT

48 SUMMER ROW BIRMINGHAM, B3 1JJ TEL: 0121 201 3377

OPHEEM OPHEEM.COM

ktar Islam’s swanky new gaffe is a glamorous affair with some serious interiors game. From the outside the restaurant looks gargantuan, but split into two distinct sections – cosy bar area with squishy sofas and a more formal dining room – the clever design works. It’s been all-hands-on-deck to get here, in fact the ‘maitre d’ has lost a stone merely working with Aktar. A freshly-launched summer lunch menu caught our eye and as Brum feels hotter than the Balearics it seemed apt. For those of you who avoid Indian food at lunchtime, a) what’s wrong with you? and b) this isn’t your average Indian nosh. If you’re imagining a huge raging bowl of Balti with a naan the size of a steering wheel this isn’t for you. This is refined, precise and delicate with realistic starry Michelin ambitions. From the perfectly crisp cone filled with cured trout topped with pea puree of the amuse bouche to a stunning vanilla dessert that tasted every bit as beautiful as it looked, we were impressed. The lunch menu’s succinct with three starter options, three main and two desserts. There’s an extra palate cleanser between starter and mains which was dreamy – tamarind sorbet, thinly sliced pickled cucumber and a spicy crumb. Mutton patties (Shaami) served with a green chutney and tomato had the perfect amount of spice and heat.

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Croquette shaped spinach-y morsels of loveliness (Palak Tikki) with refreshing grated carrot and onion and a punchy sauce/puree was just gorgeous. Thangri masala which is basically tandoori chicken but not as you know it was superb. Using thighs rather than breast meat meant that while the chicken had an intense smoky charred flavour, the inside stayed beautifully moist. We had a slight hiccup with Meen which was described on the menu as plaice, greens and coconut milk. Plaice was replaced by trout without explanation. The sauce was brilliant and the trout was good, but it seemed a bit odd not to address the fact it was different and I suspect white fish would have worked better. Indian desserts get a bad rep and we’ve been let down in the past. Not this time. Both desserts were absolutely stunning. Amda was an intense rhubarb sorbet with a fragrant spiced custard that so light it was practically a foam. Lovely. Kaddu looked like a work of art and tasted every bit as good. Not entirely sure what all the flavours were other than vanilla and pumpkin seed, so you’ll have to trust us, it was a winner. There’s no denying at £19.95 for two courses and £22.95 for three, the lunch menu is unbelievable value for such accomplished cooking. It’s whet our appetite for sure and we’ll be heading back for dinner, which looks equally intriguing, pronto. I

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ing livSTYLE

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BRIGHT AND BREEZY

Top and shorts, Caroline Flack for River Island, Bullring

FIELD DAY

ONCE YOU’VE GOT THE BASICS NAILED, DIVE HEADLONG INTO

FESTIVAL FEVER WITH SOME OF THIS SEASON’S HOTTEST FINDS

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STYLE

TOP OF THE CROPS

Crop printed trouser £45, Hush, John Lewis, Grand Central

BAGS OF STYLE Rucksack £27, Topshop, Bullring

ON THE FRINGE Fringed kimono, House of Fraser, Mell Square

o Whiley is our ultimate festival style icon. Never grubby, never over-done, relaxed cool at its absolute best, she looks like a woman who’s comfortable in her own skin and owns every chic understated outfit she dons whatever the weather. That’s the look we’re after. Obviously, you have to consider the practicalities of being at a festival. You’ll be walking for miles and dancing ‘til dawn possibly in a muddy puddle, so a great rain coat and pair of comfortable shoes are a must as are wellies just in case. We go for Hunter every time – they’re classic, reliable, long lasting. A bumbag is also a good idea – a sentence we never thought we’d write! A sequinned number from Accessorize will fit the bill or a hi-tech hip purse with builtin phone charger from Cuckooland. Boring bit done, we’ve scoured the rails for some inspiration that’ll keep you looking cool whatever the temperature. And for the all-important festival beauty DENIM DAYS hacks head over to page 36. I Dungarees £34,

J

DREAMY TEE

Holiday tee £39, Hush, John Lewis, Grand Central

Next, Bullring

TWINKLE TOES

Edris pump £60, Dune, Bullring

HEAD CANDY

Multi-coloured floral headband £9.99, New Look, Fort Shopping Park

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BLING BLING Exotic sequin bumbag £25, Accessorize, Bullring

BOLD PRINT

Festival print shirt £59.50, Oliver Bonas, Harborne High Street

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STYLE

FLORAL FEDORA

Nellie fedora £24, Oliver Bonas, Harborne High Street

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STYLE JACKET IN

Denim fringed jacket, Miss Selfridge, Merry Hill

PLATFORM POWER

Mustard platform £52, Office, Bullring

HAT HAIR

Pom Pom floppy hat £20, Next, Bullring

BODY ART

Painless tattoos £6.50, NPW, npwgifts.com

CLUB TROPICANA

Playsuit Maison de Nimes £35, House of Fraser, Mell Square

BOHO CHIC

Scarlet embroidered jacket £49, Monsoon, Grand Central

RIGHT STRIPES

Striped trousers £29, Topshop, Bullring

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STYLE

FREE SPIRIT

Cute tee £22, River Island, Touchwood

EFFORTLESSLY COOL

Polo Ralph Lauren jacket £349, Lollys Laundry dress £115, Biba bag £130, House of Fraser, Mell Square

SLOUCHY SHORT

Sofia Bagru short £29, Monsoon, Grand Central

TERRIFIC TASSELS

Festival fedora £10, F&F, Tesco

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STYLE FESTIVAL FEVER

Accessories from Accessorize, Bullring

MELLOW YELLOW

Nine by Savannah Miller dress £59, blouse £40, Faith trainers £29, Debenhams, Fort Shopping Park

STUDS FOR THE WIN

MONO WOW

Embroidered shirt £40, Next, Bullring

Biba studded bumbag £60, House of Fraser, Mell Square

ANIMAL MAGIC

FAB FLARE

Leopard print flared Leopard print sandal trouser £32, Miss £99, Hush, John Lewis, Selfridge, Merry Hill Grand Central

IT’S A WRAP

Yellow embellished wrap front playsuit £75, Miss Selfridge, Merry Hill

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GADGET SHOW

Hip purse with built-in phone charger £64.95, cuckooland.com

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FEST OF THE BEST BEAUTY

1 2

We’ve scoured the shelves for the best space-saving, multi-tasking products that will work hard to keep you looking fresh throughout a festival, so you don’t have to. Here’s your shopping list 1. La Roche Posay Anthelios Pocket Sun CreamSPF50+, £10

3

Pack a pocket sunscreen to stash in your bumbag, so you can reapply when needed. Burnt skin isn’t cool. 2. Cover FX Glitter Drops, £35

These drops can be mixed with make-up for a dewy radiant glow or used to highlight face and body. 3. Klorane Make Up Remover Wipes, £7.50

These cornflower water drenched wipes are good the environment as well as your skin and cleanse gently without irritation. 4. Living Proof Healthy Hair Dry Shampoo, £23

This doesn’t just absorb excess oil like typical dry shampoos, it actually removes dirt giving you a couple of days grace.

4

5

5. Starskin 7-in-1 Miracle Skin Mask Pads, £27

A multi-tasker that will work hard for you these little pads massage, exfoliate, tone, moisturise and act as a serum, mask and primer in one. 6. Rituals Hands Free hand sanitiser, £4

An essential for the bumbag at all times too, this kills bacteria in 15 seconds 7. OUAI Anti-Frizz Hair Sheets, £20

Handy anti-frizz hair sheets will keep you looking smooth well into day three.

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STYLE FOR MEN

AVOID THE PITFALLS OF FESTIVAL FASHION BY KEEPING IT SIMPLE AND STEERING CLEAR OF THE DRESSING-UP BOX

FESTIVAL HITS HOT TO TROT Clothing and sunglasses from New Look, Fort Shopping Park

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STYLE FOR MEN

LOGO LOCO Mirror logo nylon Hugo Boss £159, House of Fraser, Mell Square

COMING HOME Football organic cotton tee £25, Fatface, Grand Central

WHATEVER THE WEATHER Over the head cagoule, Topman, Bullring

acking for a festival should be fairly straightforward – essentially you’re camping, but with a great soundtrack and all the lols. However, it’s easy to lose your head and get lured into a fancy dress vibe which is best avoided. So, remember your style and pack some great shades – stylish plus they’ll hide the effects of the night before – as well as a couple of pairs of classic shorts/denim cut offs, jeans, sturdy shoes, a handful of well cut tees, a warm hoodie, waterproof jacket and a hat. Simples. I

P

HEAD GEAR Nico hat £20, Dune, Bullring

STAND OUT Yellow sweater, Topman, Bullring IN THE BAG Red Herring bumbag £15, Debenhams, Bullring ALL IN THE JEANS Slim fit Levis £95, House of Fraser, Mell Square

GET SHIRTY Pineapple print Hymn shirt £55, House of Fraser, Mell Square TEE TIME White California graphic tee £7.99, New Look, Fort Shopping Park

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HEALTH

EVERYTHING YOU’VE EVER WANTED TO KNOW

YOGA

ABOUT YOGA, BUT BEEN AFRAID TO ASK…

TOTAL

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KNOW-HOW

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HEALTH

o the newcomer, the world of yoga might seem all too much. What’s the difference between hot yoga and… cold yoga? Between downward facing dog and upward facing? It can seem overwhelming! We asked founder of yogahaven, Allie Hill, who has 17 years teaching experience, to ‘demystify’ yoga… JIVAMUKTI: Has its roots in Ashtanga yoga and includes a dynamic mixture of asana (postures), pranayama (breathing techniques), meditation and chanting. The purpose of Jivamukti yoga is to remind Western civilization of the original intention of yoga, which is to provide a practitioner with a path to enlightenment; to intertwine a holistic approach to living into every class and allow that approach to life to flow with grace into every moment through compassion for all living beings. HOT YOGA: The benefits of hot yoga have been established time and time again. Incorporating everything yoga stands for – mindfulness, balance of body and spirit, alleviation of stress and anxiety; along with the detoxifying benefits of the added heat, the rewards of hot yoga are countless. Great for beginners, as well as experienced yogis, hot yoga – carrying out yoga in the heat – is designed to stretch and strengthen muscles through a sequence of static asana (postures) which leave you feeling stronger, renewed, and flexible. The heat enables joints and muscles to loosen and open up, allowing a more free range of movement while cleansing your body from within. HOT FLOW/VINYASA: Hot Flow yoga tends to be for the more experienced yogi… but everybody has to start somewhere! Rather than going into and out of static yoga poses, the various postures are connected through a fluid sequence, leading into more advanced material. DON’T SWEAT IT: Yoga’s ability to de-stress you before or after a busy day at the office can do wonders for your working day. Heading straight from work to the yoga studio can really help you to leave your work at the office, and achieve a peaceful mind-set to take home with you.

T

BENEFITS OF YOGA IMPROVES YOUR FLEXIBILITY: One of the first and most obvious benefits of yoga. Initially you may not be able to touch your toes, never mind do a backbend. But if you stick with it, you'll notice a gradual loosening and eventually, seemingly impossible poses will become possible. You'll also probably notice that aches and pains start to disappear. BUILDS MUSCLE STRENGTH: Strong muscles do more than look good. They also protect us from conditions like arthritis and back pain and help prevent falls in elderly people. And when you build strength through yoga, you balance it with flexibility. BETTERS YOUR BONE HEALTH: Weight-bearing exercise strengthens bones and helps ward off osteoporosis. Many postures in yoga require that you lift your own weight. And some, like Downward and Upward-Facing Dog, help strengthen the arm bones, which are particularly vulnerable to osteoporotic fractures INCREASES YOUR BLOOD FLOW AND UPS YOUR HEART RATE: Yoga gets your blood flowing and help your circulation, especially in your hands and feet. Yoga also gets more oxygen to your cells, which function better as a result. Yoga also boosts levels of hemoglobin and red blood cells, which carry oxygen to the tissues. LOWERS BLOOD SUGAR: Yoga lowers blood sugar and LDL (bad) cholesterol and boosts HDL (good) cholesterol. In people with diabetes, yoga has been found to lower blood sugar in several ways. HELPS YOU FOCUS AND RELAX: An important component of yoga is focusing on the present encourages you to relax and slow your breath, shifting the balance from the sympathetic nervous system (or the fight-or-flight response) to the parasympathetic nervous system. If you learn to quiet your mind, you'll be likely to live longer and healthier. I For more details about yoga and founder of yogahaven, Allie Hill, visit: www.yogahaven.co.uk

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HEALTH

TAKING THE PLUNGE

HOW SWIMMING CAN HELP YOU TO LOSE WEIGHT, BUILD MUSCLE AND FEEL GREAT

ummer is here and it’s time to get swimming. It’s widely regarded as one of the most enjoyable forms of exercise helping to improve your heart rate and blood flow and maintain a healthy weight. It’s also fantastic fun and especially invigorating in an outside pool. Here’s just a few reasons why you should spend large parts of this summer submerged…

S

Increased Muscle Tone and Strength As water is much denser than air, swimming is a far more effective way of toning your muscles than any other form of cardiovascular exercise. When you swim you get the cardio part of your work-out while also working on an even body tone. Water provides a certain amount of extra resistance, which has a similar effect as using a light weight on a resistance machine at the gym. Healthy heart In addition to helping tone up pecs, triceps and quads, swimming also improves the most important muscle in our bodies – the heart. As an aerobic exercise, it serves to strengthen the heart, not only helping it to become larger, but making it more efficient in pumping, which leads to better blood flow throughout your body. This can help reduce the risk of coronary heart disease by as much as 40 per cent. Reduced blood pressure and cholesterol levels Studies have shown that swimming for 30 minutes at least three times a week can significantly lower your

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blood pressure. One study found that resting heart rate was considerably lowered after just 10 weeks of regular swimming. Plus, swimming for half an hour or longer helps reduce the levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) in your blood while raising the levels of HDL – good cholesterol. Lower blood sugar levels Swimming for at least half-an-hour three to four times a week, combined with eating a balanced low-glycaemic index (GI) diet, has been shown to control blood sugar levels, according to the Amateur Swimming Association, the English national governing body for swimming. Low-impact When submerged in water, the human body automatically becomes lighter and because around 90 per cent of your body’s weight is buoyant when you swim

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there is less strain placed on bones, joints and muscles. This makes it a fantastic exercise for people with injuries, who may be overweight or suffer from arthritis. Flexibility Unlike exercise machines in a gym that tend to isolate one body part at a time, swimming allows you to use a lot of muscles at the same time. Helps manage weight Swimming breaststroke for 30 minutes will burn approximately 400Kcal, depending on your weight

and speed. That beats walking, cycling and even running at 6mph, which burns 300Kcal. Improved sleep People who take vigorous exercise, such as swimming, are almost twice as likely as non-exercisers to have a good night’s sleep. They are also the least likely to report sleep problems, like waking up too early or having difficulty falling asleep. This means you’ll be more likely to concentrate better, look more attractive and live longer. I

Find out more about swimming at Edgbaston Priory Club, Sir Harrys Road, Birmingham, B15 2UZ. Tel: 0121 440 2492 www.edgbastonpriory.com

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ng il viLEISURE

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CARRY ON CAMPING DESPITE MIDGES, ZERO SLEEP, BLISTERING HEAT OR TRENCH

FOOT, THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT CAMPING THAT APPEALS AND WE’RE WILLING TO GIVE IT ANOTHER CHANCE

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LEISURE

BUGS AWAY Green citronella candle £17.50, White Stuff, Cannon Street

MULTI-TASKING Fold up cutery set £8, National Trust

TABLE TOP Menu Carrie LED table lamp £130, Nest, nest.co.uk

amping is an acquired taste. At the mercy of the Great British weather we find we’re either sweltering or soggy, but with a bit of preparation and the right kit we’re determined to get on board and possibly even enjoy it. The most important consideration is the tent. While we wouldn’t advocate scrimping – sorry Aldi – it’s worth taking a look at last year’s models. It means you can avoid paying a premium for what can be very minor design updates. Also, go for a tent you can stand up in – it will make the experience a much happier one and remember you might need to pitch in the dark, so have a trial run before you head off. Pick your spot wisely before you pitch. Consider where the toilets are, whether you have shelter and, it sounds obvious, if the ground is flat. Avoid low-lying areas that will get saturated if it rains. Pack extra blankets and wear layers to keep warm at night and remember insulation underneath you is just as important as your sleeping bag. Also, plan your meals. It will make camping life much more harmonious. Choose tasty meals that are quick and easy to prepare with minimal equipment.

C

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LEISURE

WRAP UP Yellow and green blanket £14.99, HomeSense

FULLY CHARGED Ban.do- Paradiso Mobile Charger £16, House of Fraser, Mell Square

COMPACT CUTLERY Pretty Useful Tools yellow cutlery kit £15, Paperchase, Grand Central

UNDER THE DOME Vango Ascot 500 five person tent £230, National Trust

There are lots of effective charging gadgets that mean you can stay in touch with the outside world if you need to. State of the art portable speakers can provide entertainment along with a plethora of games – you can’t beat rounders or boules. Products that have multiple functions or charge themselves are great such as stoves that double up as chargers, self-charging torches or the trusty Swiss army knife. Also, pack some essentials such as duct tape, cable ties, extra batteries and a first-aid kit. I OLD SCHOOL Wooden rounders set £29.95, dotcomgiftshop.com

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BED IN A BAG Bundle Beds bed in a bag £199.95, cuckooland.com

GAME ON Boules £10, Dunelm, Mell Square

COLOUR WHEEL Portable USB charger £9.95, Rex London, rexlondon.com

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IN THE BAG Hip bag with bottle £35, National Trust

KEEP COOL Sunnylife ice cream hand held fan £13, House of Fraser, Mell Square

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COOK OFF Lotus Grill Smokeless BBQ £139, cuckooland.com

REPAIR KIT Silnet Silicone Seam Sealer £8, Cotswold Outdoor, Mell Square

LIGHT UP Telescopic torch £8.95, Rex London, rexlondon.com STAY WARM Award-winning PILL hot water bottle with neoprene cover £30, cuckooland.com NOCTURNAL ANIMALS Kissing Badgers sleeping bag £65, Anorak, anorakonline.co.uk

ROOM WITH A VIEW Outwell Earth 4 Tent £125, Cotswold Outdoor, Mell Square

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KID-O-BUNK £250, Millets (currently on offer at £200) Easy to assemble can be transformed from a camp bed to a bench to bunk beds to two single beds.

SLEEP EASY

VANGO ALLURE 10cm SELF INFLATING MATTRESS, £89.99, Winfield Outdoors A thick 10cm layer of foam ensures comfort and helps protect against draughts.

AEROBED RAISED AIR BED, from £75, Go Outdoors A double height mattress that makes you feel like you’re getting into a real bed. Also great for people with mobility issues.

CAMPING IS MADE INFINITELY BETTER WHEN YOU’RE NOT EXHAUSTED, SO GIVE YOUR SLEEPING ARRANGEMENTS SOME SERIOUS THOUGHT BEFORE YOU HEAD OFF INTO THE WILDERNESS here are many options including traditional camp beds with legs – which are super light, easy to put up and which can be more comfortable than they look. Self-inflating mattresses are a great option too as long as you go for one that is deep enough to be warm and comfortable. Double height air beds make you feel like you’re climbing into an actual bed and fishing beds which have long been the fisherman’s friend transform easily from a chair to a bed – might be the best kept camping secret of all. Kids will love the Kid-O-Bunk which is easy to set up, versatile and a terrific space saver. Happy camping! I

T

BUNDLE BED, from £199, Bundlebeds.com Billed as an all-in-one although we think it’s at its best when used on top of a camp bed. It’s light, warm, comfortable and easy to wash.

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GRAND CANYON EXTRA STRONG CAMPING BED, £74.16, Amazon Extra long – great for tall people, but perhaps not for small tents – and strong. At 42cm off the ground, it’s light and comfortable.

ANACONDA NIGHTHAWK BED CHAIR CUSKY, £218, Amazon Easily converts from chair to bed and is light and comfortable.

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HOMES

PROPERTY THIS MONTH’S PICK OF TOP HOMES FOR SALE ON THE MARKET

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HOMES

SEVERN UP

Romsley, Bridgnorth Guide price: £3.95million Agent: Andrew Grant, tel: 01905 734735 An impressive six-bedroomed country house with stunning views over the Severn Valley. It boasts all the living space that you could possibly need, including a music room, drawing room, kitchen/breakfast room and an indoor swimming pool. There’s also two gate lodges, formal and informal landscaped gardens and paddocks, all extending to just under 30 acres.

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HOMES

HEAVENLY PAD Charlotte Road, Edgbaston Guide price: £349,000 Agent: James Laurence, tel: 0121 604 4060

A fantastic two-bedroom, twobathroom duplex apartment within a converted church in a cracking part of town. The property oozes class with Gothic church features complemented by stylish, contemporary living.

REAL GEM The Jewel Court, Jewellery Quarter Guide price: £230,400 Agent: Knight Frank, tel: 0121 200 2220 Luxury two-bedroom apartments in the heart of a very cool part of Birmingham. Designed and fitted out to an exceptionally high specification with some really top quality craftmanship on show. A courtyard above the underground car parking completes the chic look.

BRICKS&BITS

From the industry’s movers and shakers to the latest groundbreaking developments… email your property news and pictures to shelley@brumliving.co.uk

PEBBLE MILL PLAN

CHARITY BOOST

COTTAGE CHANCE

Birmingham Council has approved an application

Commercial property agency Bond Wolfe has

ExtraCare Bournville Gardens has a number of cottages with state-of-the-art features still available

from Calthorpe Estates to increase Building 4

donated £2,500 to Black Country Women’s Aid.

proposals at Pebble Mill to 9,000 sq m from the

Women's Aid executive director, Sara Ward, said:

to buy. Exclusively for the over-55s, the

original 5,000 sq m. The building will be between

“The donation will help provide training in

development has a community feel with its own

Circle Health’s new hospital and Birmingham NHS

schools to help the next generation understand

café bar, shop, hairdressing/beauty salon and

Dental Hospital on Mill Pool Way.

what a good relationship looks like.”

fitness suite plus traditional support where needed.

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LEAFY LIVING Foxhills, Barnt Green Price: From £299,950 Agent: Cala Homes, tel: 0121 516 4054

Some rather swish two-bedroom apartments in leafy Barnt Green that are perfect for a ‘lock up and leave’ lifestyle. Featuring lovely open plan kitchen/living/dining area and a contemporary master bedroom with en suite and state of the art security systems for added peace of mind.

Don’t miss Property of the Week on our Facebook page every Thursday www.facebook.com/bhamliving

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MOTORING

AIN’T NO

MOUNTAIN HIGH ENOUGH SUE COOKE GOES CLIMBING… IN MITSUBISHI’S IMPRESSIVE NEW SHOGUN SPORT

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here’s something surreal about sitting in a vehicle weighing several tonnes, hanging in mid-air at 45 degrees, pondering on the depth of the muddy pool below. All I really wanted to do was to get to the bottom of the slippery quarry incline but the off-road instructor was keen to demonstrate the Hill Descent Control capabilities of Mitsubishi’s new Shogun Sport. And the off-road technology is fantastic. I have driven through and over many man-made quarries in Scotland and the Cotswolds on previous SUV launches but the Mitsubishi Shogun Sport launch was the most extreme off-road course I have ever completed in my 20 years of motoring. The average adventurer driving around the Midlands, will probably never experience such extremes.

T

SKY’S THE LIMIT A series of off-road modes are easily selected using the off-road terrain control, to tackle gravel, mud, snow, sand and rock. I put my foot down to crest the top of the steepest hill and, only seeing sky, I jammed the brakes on, unsure which way to turn the steering wheel. I drove into a lake using the 218mm ground clearance and saw water surrounding the car, using the Multi-around Monitor System (MMS) that employs cameras at the front, rear and in the door mirrors to display a bird’s eye view. After rolling and tumbling over muddy ruts and almost touching the floor while caressing a side wall, I descended a slope with a very sharp bend, ably assisted by a turning circle of 11.2 metres. Yet the new seven-seater Shogun Sport is also very competent on Birmingham’s main streets. Parking in multi-storey car parks and idling in traffic queues are helped with the wealth of technology on board. Standard specification includes Hill Descent Control, Trailer Start Assist (TSA), up to 3.1 tonnes and Hill Start Assist (HSA).

HI-TECH LUXURY Mitsubishi Motors has come a long way since it first built cars in 1917. The first Shogun was launched in 1982 and 18,500 units have been sold – 12,000 still remain on the road but Shogun production has finished. The Shogun Sport is not its replacement said new MD Rob Lindley. The SUV exterior of the Shogun Sport has the recognisable company grille. The luxury interior has leather upholstery, piano black finish with silver trim, keyless entry with push-button start, LED daytime running lights and a Smartphone Link Display Audio system which allows users to connect to apps or other features of an Apple or Android smartphone through the touchscreen or via voice control. The range-topping derivative adds further luxury with heated front seats and Mitsubishi’s most advanced safety features, including Blind Spot Warning and Forward Collision Mitigation, which uses radars in the front grille to judge whether there is risk of an impact with the vehicle in front. The 502-litre boot has a huge opening and offers up to 1,488 litres with the rear seats folded. ALL TORQUE Mitsubishi says diesel sales are growing in this SUV sector and strong off-road performance is helped by the huge reserves of torque from the 2.4-litre diesel engine which is mated to an all-new eight-speed automatic transmission. And if you just can’t wait to get your hands on the Shogun Sport then the new MD has good news, saying Mitsubishi can supply customers within 10 days of placing an order. The SUV also comes with a five-year, 62,500-mile warranty. And that’s amazing too! I

FACTS AT A GLANCE Model: Mitsubishi Shogun Sport 3 Price: £37,775 otr Engine: 2.4-litre turbodiesel

Performance: 0-62 in 11 seconds and on to a top speed of 112mph CO2 emissions: 227g/km Combined fuel consumption: 32.8mpg

SHOWROOM Red Rose Mitsubishi, 504-508 College Road, Kingstanding, Birmingham, B44 0HL. Tel: 0121 382 8833 www.redrose-mitsubishi.co.uk

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YOUNG, GIFTED & BRUMMIE

ARCADIA ROOTS We caught up with the Midlands band about their stint at Glasto, dream gigs and drumming through West Africa

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With Dave are Josh Terry and Tate Taylor on bass, Dan Gauden on electric guitar while Tom Callinswood plays guitar, cigar box and djembe – a West African drum. Dave had previously played with all of the band members in some form before they came together to form Arcadia Roots. Some of the band went to the same school but didn’t really know one another until music brought them together. It was while jamming with other musicians at the Cock and Magpie in Bewdley they met Dan whose style of playing is heavily influenced by U2’s The Edge.

t a small local festival in June when our expectations of great music were less than Pyramid Stage proportions, we were stunned by Arcadia Roots who blew our Birkenstocks off. A band influenced by an eclectic mix of people and genres, they describe their unique sound as psychedelic reggae among other things. The band is flying high having been selected by Glastonbury judges to support Bastille at the festival’s Pilton Party last year and rocking the BBC Introducing Stage at Lakefest 2017. They have another set at Lakefest 2018 this month where they’ll perform on the main stage with bands like The Darkness. They’ll also be at the One Love Festival which is one of the UK’s major reggae and dub festivals.

A

INTRODUCTIONS Dave Small is on lead vocals and percussion. And when we say percussion and lead vocals, he’s not a man for sitting behind a drum kit while crooning. He’s up on his feet centre stage surrounded by a selection of drums that look straight out of Africa with incredible energy. The band’s energy is their thing actually. It’s the thing that stops you in your tracks and makes you end your conversation and take notice.

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GOT TO GROOVE The band’s sound and style has been created by blending many genres including world, blues, soul, reggae, trance, rock and dance music. Some of the boy’s favourite bands and influences include Led Zeppelin, Jimi Hendrix, U2, Tinariwen (African desert rock) and Fleetwood Mac among others. Vocalists they look up to are Otis Redding, Bob Marley, Paul Rodgers and Robert Plant. You can hear the African influence heavily – not surprising since Dave travels across the west coast of Africa playing a variety of percussion instruments and singing with local people. He says: “It’s had a major impact on my writing. It’s got to groove! The rhythmic backbone is very important.” The next step would be part of a major tour with any of their musical heroes, but ultimately in terms of dream gigs, a huge crowd of fans singing their own songs back at them would be brilliant whether that’s at a festival or a packed stadium. A slot on Later with Jools Holland would please the band too and we can definitely see that happening. LOCAL SCENE The band’s ambitions are to see as much of the world as possible while making a living doing what they love i.e. writing, playing music and making audiences happy with their unique sound. Of the Midlands music scene, the band feel you have to keep it real to crack it. They say they are proud to come from such a rich and successful heritage of musical artists from all over the West Midlands. “We seem to be a very 'working-class' music scene. Midlanders don't tolerate pretentious musicians the way some other areas seem to,” says Dave. “You have to ‘keep it real’. There are gigs everywhere across the region and that can only be a good thing.” I

GO SEE Catch Aracadia Roots at Lakefest, Eastnor Castle on Friday 10 August. Check out arcadiaroots.com/gigs

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GROWING PLACES

WORLD RECORD >>

Symphony Hall was the centre of a world record for the largest number of simultaneous performances of one show as 12,500 Stagecoach Performing Arts School students performed Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Junior. The challenge featured 200 Stagecoach schools across the UK and abroad performing in 144 venues with Symphony Hall as the hub with 330 children in the main performance. Sarah Kelly, CEO of Stagecoach, said: “It’s only fitting that we smashed our own Guinness World Record from 10 years ago.”

NEW HEAD

SCHOOL REPORT

WELCOME: Susannah Palmer gets to know Norfolk House pupils

Norfolk House School on the Calthorpe Estate, Edgbaston, has appointed a new headteacher. Susannah Palmer was previously deputy head of Mayfield Preparatory School, Walsall and also

TOP MARKS: King Edward’s boys celebrate their results (Picture: David Ash Photography)

taught at West House School, Edgbaston for 22

IB BLOWED!

years. Jonathan Challinor, chair of directors for Norfolk House School, said: “It quickly became

Pupils at King Edward’s School are celebrating an outstanding set of International

apparent during the recruitment process that she

Baccalaureate results. The maximum 45 points was achieved by James Cleasby, Eugene

cares deeply about the children in her charge and

Toso and Daniel Yue – a score reached by only 0.1 per cent of 160,000 IB students

inspires excellence in those around her.”

worldwide. A further five students scored 44 points, and 43 per cent of 110 pupils attained scores of 40 points or above (the equivalent of more than four A*s at A-Level).

FIVE A DAY As part of celebrations to mark 70 years of the NHS, leading

childcare provider Busy Bees has launched a new summer menu which has achieved NHS Startwell accreditation – meaning the meals they serve are nutritionally balanced. The launch of the new menus took place in Busy Bees at Queen Elizabeth Hospital nursery where parents who work at the hospital came along to sample the food. HAPPY EATERS: Startwell nutritionist Gemma Gill at the Busy Bees nursery

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MUSICAL LIFE Bromsgrove School music student Emily Evans has been selected as organ scholar at St David’s Cathedral. The appointment will involve Emily playing a full part in the musical life of the cathedral. Emily said: “I was over the moon when I received the news. I hope to gain an organ scholarship when I go to university, alongside reading for a degree in music, hopefully at Oxbridge, after which I want to pursue playing the organ as my career.”

BIG TOP YEAR

HEADING FOR HALLFIELD Hallfield School is preparing for the official arrival of its new head, Keith Morrow, next month. He takes the reins after 11 years as head at The Elms in Long Eaton and said: “I want to take a good school with a distinguished history and make sure it’s not only the prep school of choice in Birmingham but also develops a national reputation for the quality of education on offer. Watch this space!”

To celebrate the 250th anniversary of the first circus, Moreton Hall transformed its grounds with a big top, clowns, stilt walkers and even an elephant from British Ironworks! Principal Jonathan Forster said: “The circus has been a wonderful opportunity for the school to work intensively together after exams. What a way to end the school year!” Moreton Hall has also been awarded Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference (HMC) accreditation as one of the UK’s leading independent schools for girls.

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PERSON TO PERSON

CLOSE WITHÁ DONNA BAKER A FEAR OF MOTORWAYS (NOW OVERCOME) AND A LOVE OF THE NEC, ARE TWO OF THE ‘SECRETS’ REVEALED BY THE MANAGER AT HEARTLANDS CARE HOME, YARDLEY

BEEN THERE, DONE THAT I started my career in care in 1999 and worked as care assistant for 10 years before becoming a home manager in 2009. In June 2013 I was promoted to area manager for the same company but the following year I was made redundant – a difficult time as I was very passionate about my job. In 2014, I went on to work as regional manager for a bigger company and then, in 2017, I became care home manager for Country Court Care. IT’S WHAT I DO I lead a team of nurses and carers looking after older people who are living with nursing needs and dementia. We make sure the service meets the needs of each resident and member of staff and that the service is compliant at all levels with CQC requirements. I also meet regularly with relatives and friends and liaise with local authorities. WHAT I’D LIKE TO SEE? To develop and lead a service which is second to none and is a flagship home not only within Country Court Care, but also within the Birmingham area. I want to bring the community into the home and likewise take the home out to the community – so that local people see Heartlands Care Home as their own care home. Personally, my ambition is to travel and see the world and eventually do some voluntary work in India.

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BIGGEST SUCCESS Learning to drive on the motorway. I used to be scared of the motorway and would do anything to avoid it. Then I got a regional manager’s job, but to do it I had to drive on the motorway. I really wanted that job so I had to conquer my fears, which I did, and it was the best thing I ever did. The world is my oyster… BIGGEST LESSON LEARNED As a care home manager I have learned that for staff to understand the dream I have got to show them the dream. If I don’t show it, they won’t get it. WHAT I LIKE ABOUT BRUM My first impression of Birmingham is that the M6 is insanely busy! My favourite thing about Birmingham is the NEC – in my job I attend various conferences at the NEC, and in my own time I love going to all the food shows held there. DOWNTIME I like to spend it with my family. I love going on holiday. My husband Chris and I love travelling throughout the UK and Europe, We always try to go to the Caravan Show to see if we fancy an upgrade. I also love cooking, and you can’t beat an indulgent pampering day. It’s nice to have ‘me time’. I

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ing livBUSINESS

SNOOZLE

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Until 18 months or so ago, Phil and Dan Neale were half or Britain’s Got Talent hit family group, the Neales. Now they are waking up the nation with a whole, new sound…

hil and Dan Neale hit stardom with fellow brother James and dad Laurie after the foursome took TV’s Britain’s Got Talent by storm, famously reducing Simon Cowell to tears. After hitting the right notes and seeing their self-released single peak at number six in the Official UK Music Charts – which had them sandwiched between Rihanna and Drake – the Neales eventually decided to call time on their music careers. “It came to a natural conclusion, we don’t take bookings for the Neales now,” said Phil. But as one door closed another very different one opened for the youngest of the brothers and band manager, Phil, and Dan. The Birmingham boys pulled back the covers on the dreaded mobile phone ‘wake-up’ ringing tone by officially launching an alternative – their own, fun and social alarm clock app called Snoozle.

P

SOCIAL ALARM CLOCK Snoozle is a new connected social alarm clock app that lets users wake up to personalised audio content, such as

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special messages from loved ones. Available in Android and iOS, the new app replaces the persistent, piercing ringing of most smartphones with ‘Snoozles’. Snoozles are 12-second voice messages which, when sent to friends, will play at the time the recipient has set their alarm clock. Whether funny anecdotes, love notes or daily reminders, Snoozle personalises how users wake up. “Based on banter not beeps, Snoozle makes getting out of bed on the right side much easier,” said 28-year-old Phil. After the Neales stopped performing, each returned to ‘proper’ day jobs – something which they had always intended to do as Britain’s Got Talent fame came totally out of the blue and they knew the group has a finite shelf life. Phil worked as brand manager for Tesco Finest in Welwyn Garden, but was saving furiously to ‘bootstrap’ the Snoozle project. Phil and Dan put in every effort and endured sleepless nights of their own to ensure that Snoozle was a crowdpleaser. That became a reality when the pair set up a

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offered something a bit different. We’ve used that feedback in our development of Snoozle.” And following the official launch in June, Snoozle users can enjoy a sound night’s sleep with features such as ‘Snoozle Lullabies’ – audio content to help people drift off. Now, as well as download the app, Phil and Dan want to hear from aspiring influencers to be part of Snoozle’s app network of ‘Wake Up Artists’ which promotes the talents of undiscovered musicians, comedians, news readers and more. And while the dream has become a reality this year, there’s also talk of Snoozle becoming available via smart speakers, such as Amazon Echo, and smart watches in future. HOW IT STARTED The idea for Snoozle was first dreamt up in 2012 when Phil would manually set voice memos of good luck messages ahead of exams or last-minute revision from friends and family as his alarm tone to wake up to. “I wasn’t much of a morning person when it came to the awful alarm tone on my phone. I much preferred waking up to a happy and friendly voice. It set me up so well ahead of an important day. It became something I did ahead of every university exam and it really helped me to get a restful night’s sleep because it totally put my mind at ease.” Bringing in brother Dan, 29, as co-founder, the pair continued their tireless efforts to build-up the app idea while enjoying the limelight as part of the Neales, who reached the final of Britain’s Got Talent in 2015. As CEO of Snoozle, Phil is now full-time on the business, together with Warren, while Dan works with him on a part-time basis. crowdfunding page via online platform Seedrs in 2017 and truly woke up the market – blitzing a £100,000 target in less than 10 hours and becoming the site’s number one ‘Investment Opportunity’ during the week of its campaign launch. INSANE REACTION “It was absolutely insane to see people really connecting with Snoozle. We knew that we were tapping into something that was interesting to people. The buzz about what we were creating helped us to attract our now technical co-founder, Warren Bickley, who has been a real coup for Snoozle,” said Phil. “Funders told us that they wanted a fun and innovative app that benefitted their lifestyles and

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ENDLESS OPPORTUNITIES Phil added: “Our long-term target is to become very mainstream. If you think about it, it wasn’t until the invention of the clock radio in the 1940s that people woke up to anything but a conventional alarm clock ‘ding’. Now mobile phones have taken people back to the simple ‘beep’. We aim to give you an alarm clock based on you tailored preferences – different every day if you choose. “The business opportunities are endless. If we become the business behind the first thing you hear every day, across Birmingham that can mean 500,000 people potentially waking up to a media opportunity that doesn’t currently exist. Our USP is the ‘social connection alarm clock’ and we believe we can develop Snoozles to improve sleep patterns, be entertaining, be educational and a whole lot more…” I

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From only ÂŁ25

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BUSINESS

FUTURE FACES RECORD

BUSINESS

NEWS

BUSINESS HEALTH CENTRE

A new initiative to combat ill-health among Birmingham’s professional services staff has been opened by the Lord Mayor. Cllr Yvonne Mosquito cut the ribbon at BHSF’s private medical practice in the Cornerblock building, Cornwall Street. The new practice offers business professionals access to medical services, including a GP, in a bid to ease the pressure of time-poor employees working in Colmore Row Business District.

CHAMBER CHAIR Black Country Chamber of Commerce has appointed Bankie Williams as the new chair to the board of directors. Previously MD of HomeServe, his brief includes helping to transform the commercial approach of the Chamber and lead a comprehensive governance review and develop a modern, business-focused board. “My hope is that we can ensure that the Black Country Chamber of Commerce is a real centre of excellence,” he said.

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Future Faces, the young professionals’ arm of Greater Birmingham Chambers of Commerce (GBCC), has attracted a record number of entries for its fourth annual awards. Judges are Tom Charman, the Future Face of Greater Birmingham 2017 and CEO of KOMPASS, Louise Teboul, operations director at Common Purpose, Rob Pollard, CEO of Lightbox Digital, Aman Sidhu of Balfour Beatty Vinci and Russell Jeans of the GBCC. Winners will be named at the annual dinner at Birmingham Symphony Hall on 31 August.

OPENING: The Lord Mayor and Ian Galer, chief executive of BHSF

DIRECTOR OF THE YEAR Cure Leukaemia chief executive James McLaughlin was named Director of the Year at the West Midlands Institute of Directors awards in recognition of his leadership during the charity’s most successful ever year in 2017. Cure Leukaemia broke the £2million fund-raising barrier for the first time, raising an additional £1million to fund the expansion of the worldleading Centre for Clinical Haematology at Queen Elizabeth Hospital. TOP AWARD: James McLaughlin, right, with Cure Leukaemia chairman Ian Allen

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ROYAL APPOINTMENTS Five new deputy lieutenants have been appointed to represent the Queen in the West Midlands. The new appointees are Mick Laverty of Advantage West Midlands, Martin Levermore of Birmingham City University, Fleur Sexton of PET-Xi Training, Coventry, Dr Abdullah Shehu of Coventry Muslim Forum and Julia Willoughby, pictured, of WPR Agency. Their appointments take the total number of deputy lieutenants in the region to 59.

ULTIMATE YOGA

Yoga on the rooftop is set to give a lift to health and fitness seekers at a Birmingham gym. Ultimate Fitness is holding the classes in the rooftop studio of its three-floor centre in the city centre. The gym is a favourite training venue for a number of celebrities and fitness athletes, including Ronnie Coleman, Flex Wheeler and recently Kendrick Lamar who visited while in Birmingham for his world tour at Genting Arena.

FINANCE BOOST Accountancy, investment management and tax group Smith & Williamson has boosted its Birmingham corporate finance practice with the appointment of partner Tom Clamp, who spent the last seven years with HSBC. “Tom and I have worked together previously and I am delighted that we will be able to build on the office success as we look to focus on assisting SME businesses scale-up through better access to finance,” said Iain Lownes, partner at Smith & Williamson. PARTNERS: Tom Clamp, left, and Iain Lownes

NEW ARRIVALS Leading Midlands chartered accountants, Hayward Wright Accountancy Group, has expanded following a strong period of growth. Based in Solihull, the firm has recruited four experts in accountancy, tax and payroll – account client managers Barry Tilson and Tasneem Qureshi, personal tax manager Sue Atkin and payroll senior Ann Rhodes. The appointments take the firm’s headcount to 22, a rise of 47 per cent in two years.

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GROWING GREEN Environmental consultancy Delta-Simons has cemented its presence in the West Midlands with the expansion of its Birmingham office. The firm, which specialises in environmental and geotechnical services, opened the doors to its new base in Colmore Circus Queensway in late 2017. After a successful 12 months, current unit director of the Midlands region Paul Bennett, pictured, has been appointed to head the division through its new stage of growth.

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VIEW TO A THRILL The team at Audley St George’s Place luxury retirement village, Edgbaston enjoyed spectacular views of the Birmingham skyline when they abseiled down the Holiday Inn Express in the city centre – raising nearly £1,000 for Parkinson’s UK. Lynn Foulkes, Gaye Sampson, Tom Fulwell and Tanya Ashby completed the challenge by descending the 200ft building in Birmingham’s Snow Hill Plaza.

BUSINESS BITES PEDAL POWER

Leading cycling events company HotChillee has teamed up in a threeyear partnership with Birminghambased charity Cure Leukaemia to raise £500,000. The money will be used to fund 10 new specialist research nurses at centres across the UK.

BRINDLEYPLACE DEAL Real estate firm GVA has been retained to deliver property management services at Birmingham’s Brindleyplace development. GVA will deliver services across a total of 1.5 million sq ft on the estate, including 657,486 sq ft of Grade A commercial accommodation at numbers 3, 4, 5 and 6 Brindleyplace, and the Oozells Building, which is undergoing a £4million refurbishment.

BLUES RENAMING

Birmingham City FC is renaming its home and training grounds as part of a deal with its Chinese owners, sports company Trillion Trophy Asia. The St Andrew’s stadium becomes St Andrew’s Trillion Trophy Stadium, while the Wast Hills training base has been renamed the Trillion Trophy Training Centre.

CLASSIC OPENING

Classic Interiors is opening a fourth showroom in Edgbaston Village later this year. The new showroom in Harborne Road will showcase the latest in kitchen designs from leading British and German manufacturers over two floors.

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HEAD OF EVENTS The ICC and Vox Conference Centre have strengthened their events team with the appointment of Gemma Carter-Heyward in a newly-created head of events role. Gemma has been senior event manager for the Vox since 2014 and will now oversee the event management function at both venues. Allan Boyle, the venues’ director of event services, said: “Gemma was the perfect choice. She has done a fantastic job at the Vox over the last few years.”

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BUSINESS

AESTHETICS AWARD Hair and beauty salon Aesthetics of Solihull wowed judges at the national Salon Business awards to scoop the ‘Ultimate Sm to Med’ Salon of the Year title. Directors and owners, Sarah and Adrian Bowron, were joined by members of their team as they received the award in London. “We are so proud to have been recognised for our excellent standards across the board from the client journey to staff appraisals,” said Sarah.

BELFRY ON TOP OF THE WORLD The Belfry Hotel & Resort added to its trophy cabinet at the World Travel Awards in Athens. Regarded as ‘the Oscars’ of the travel industry, the awards acknowledge winners that set the benchmark. The Belfry retained its title of England’s Leading Resort and Conference Hotel. Gail Aldridge, marketing director, said: “To retain the title recognises that the Belfry is leading the way in British hospitality, which is something we are extremely proud of.”

WELCOME: Brett Williams, left, and Joe Jobson

PRINCIPLE ROLE Principle Estate Management has brought in experienced chartered surveyor and estate management expert

MANAGING PARTNER Stuart Southall has been promoted to managing partner of the newly-formed EHL Commercial LLP. Stuart, who lives in Balsall Common, has acquired the Commercial arm of long-standing Midlands practice Edward Hands and Lewis to create EHL Commercial LLP and now as owner steps up as a member and managing partner – where he continues in his role as a commercial and chancery litigator operating in Insolvency, intellectual property and sports law.

Joe Jobson as a director. He joins Principle founder Brett Williams in the Birmingham-based practice which announced its first Birmingham city centre contract win – the management of Burne Jones House, Bennett Hill, which houses two restaurants and 29 luxury apartments. Principle, based at Cornwall House, Lionel Street, was launched in April 2018 by the former head of residential property management at CPBigwood.

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THAI EXPRESS MAKES A GRAND ENTRANCE

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he buzz of Bangkok arrived in Birmingham when Thai Express opened its fifth UK store with a press launch for the city’s media and blogger community at Grand Central. The UK management team, headed up by Sachin and Uzma Pattani, welcomed guests to a night of authentic street-style Thai food and service, complemented by Thai ladies wearing vibrant, traditional silks and golden headpieces. I

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1 Mark Moroney, Louise Brierley, Chris Halpin, James Bovill. 2 Lily Moore and friends. 4 Rosie Matharu, Tony Matters.

3 Uzma Pattani, Matt and Michelle O'Connor.

5 Khushy Parkash, Neha D'Souza. 6 Lena Yaowarath, Pim Boopay. 7 Noemi Nagy, Chef Lam.

8 Danielle Bozward, Sachin Pattani, Jan Verwijs. 9 Bethany Dyke, Anita Champaneri, Alev Dervish.

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Children’s charities receive a huge boost from property professionals roperty experts were on the money, presenting their ingenious ideas to the dragons in Brendas’ Den – raising nearly £35,500 for charity at the annual spoof property awards lunch. Held at the Burlington Hotel, Birmingham, the satirical awards event, now in its 14th year, sees the property sector raise funds for the Property For Kids charity, which supports different children’s causes each year. Highlight of the evening, which was attended by more than 370 property professionals, was an auction which raised more than £18,000 of the final total. I

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1 Ray O’Sullivan, Neil Edmonds, Steve Hall, Nick Lamb. 2 John Ottewell, George Jennings, Michele Clifton. 3 George Haslan, Alex Manley, Nell Lloyd, Steve Allman, David Dolphin, Helen Guest, Nick Joyce, Leigh Martin, John Stewart. 4 Stephen Moore, Pollie Jeffs. 5 Scott Rutherford. 6 James Sellers, Richard Brannigan, Alex Watson, Simon Dickin. 7 Andy Webb, Richard Fielding, David Kelly, Marco Abonandi. 8 Rupy Dhami, Shivani Parmar, Stephen Pratt, Beth Lambourne, Helen Andrews.

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AIR AMBULANCE BALL HONOURS LIFE-SAVERS

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Awards evening also raises incredible £130K to pay for emergency missions glittering array of guests enjoyed Midlands Air Ambulance Charity’s Recognition Awards and Charity Ball at the Vox Conference Centre and raised an incredible £130,000 – enough to fund 52 lifesaving missions. The evening was hosted by TV and radio presenter Vernon Kay and ITN newscaster Nina Hossain. The awards celebrate the charity’s fund-raisers, aircrew, volunteers and former patients. I

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1 Anthony Quinlan, Jamie Lomas, Adam Thomas, Gemma Atkinson, Gorka Marquez, Nick Pickard, Ava Badham, Kerrie English. 2 Willie and Jill Thorne, Andy Moss, Zoe Martin. 3 Nick Malenko, Royston Blythe. 4 James and Natalie Fernihough, Jamie Green, Laura Kane, Jessica and Tom Mills. 5 Sussanne Chambers, Nina Hossain. 6 Sue Beckett, Pete Conway. 7 Jason Levy, Claire Bridgewater-Higgs, Phil Higgs, Kerri Howley, Sofia Voutianitis. 8 Helen Simon, Colette Freeman, Lauren Blakemore, Caitlin Freeman, Sarah Moore.

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Grace Academy students celebrate end of exams with dazzling display ore than 80 Darlaston students showed off a dazzling display of glamorous evening dresses and sophisticated style at their end-of-year School Prom. The Year 11 partygoers from Grace Academy Darlaston enjoyed a final get-together over dinner and then danced the night away to celebrate the end of their exams. Student Ellen Greenlees wrote a special note to the ‘inspiring’ staff saying: “I’ve been the luckiest student to be taught by you all.” I

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1 George Walker. 2 Head Boy Callum Nock, Head Girl Ellen Greenlees. 3 Jaskirat Singh, Sovin Kaur, Ezri Mangat, Rahima Begum. 4 Courtney Devey, Zane Lunn. 5 Saeed Miah. 6 Millie Greatrex, Chelsea Sheldon. 7 Jake Short, Alex Preston, Kimani Grant.

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NEW EATERY OPENS IN BRINDLEYPLACE

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cclaimed chef Richard Turner is back in the kitchen as head chef of Maribel, the latest addition to Birmingham’s thriving culinary scene. The restaurant, at the former site of Edmunds in Brindleyplace, welcomed some of the city’s top professionals at its corporate launch, hosted by general manager, Gilles Larroque, who previously held the same roles at Edmunds and Turners. Maribel’s menu features eight, six, four and a special lunchtime two-course option, and will change weekly to reflect the best seasonal produce. I

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1 Andrew Donaldson, Nicki Gibberson, Lucy Barr, Nick Green. 2 Andy Taylor, Jilly Cosgrove, Scott Heeks. 3 Gilles Larroque, Laura Cox, Alex Nicholson-Evans. 4 Matt Shaw, Phil Innes, Nicola Fleet-Milne. 5 Gary Cardin, Judith Armstrong, Andrew Riley. 6 Stuart Pemble, Barbara Pemble, Alex Tross. 7 Matt Shaw, Richard Turner, Nick Green.

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More than 450 guests see family firm named Nachural Business of the Year he third Nachural Business awards were held at Wolverhampton Racecourse watched by more than 450 guests. Main winner on the night was Business of the Year, Warley Carriers, a multi-million-pound, family-owned business employing 65 people and operating from West Bromwich. Guest speaker was Byron Dixon, founder and CEO of award-winning anti-bacterial brand Micro-Fresh. Headline sponsor of the awards, which were hosted by Tommy Sandhu, was Kuflink. More than ÂŁ8,000 was raised for Promise Dreams, the charity that supports seriously and terminally ill children. I

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1 Business Woman of the Year, Sameera Ali Sadeeq. 2 Entrepreneur of the Year, Matt Jones. 3 Business of the Year, Warley Carriers. 4 Business Person of the Year, Shahid Sheikh. 5 Promoting Apprenticeships in the Workplace, Grainger and Worrall. 6 Hospitality Business of the Year, Ramada Park Hall Hotel. 7 Customer Service Excellence, Wolverhampton City Council. 8 Small Business of the Year, BCRS.

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WHAT: Disney On Ice presents Dream Big WHEN: 19 to 28 October WHERE: Arena Birmingham, www.disneyonice.co.uk Dream Big captures all the magic and adventure of Disney’s immortal tales through cutting-edge figure skating, eye-catching costumes and stunning set designs. High-flying jumps, breathtaking skating and lovable Disney friends. Proper thrilling family fun.

WHAT: British Showjumping National Championships WHEN: 7 to 12 August WHERE: NAEC Stoneleigh Park, tel: 02476 858 205 www.bsnationalchampionships.co.uk Free entry for what promises to be a great family event with competitive top-class show jumping, impressive showing classes and super shopping.

WHAT: Roy Chubby Brown WHEN: 6 September WHERE: Redditch Palace Theatre, tel: 01527 65203 www.redditchpalacetheatre.co.uk

WHAT: Marley Reprised

He’s back and he’s as naughty as ever. Choice language and politically incorrect jokes are all delivered with a cheeky grin and perfect comedy timing. Definitely not for the easily offended…

WHEN: 15 and 16 September WHERE: New Alexandra Theatre, tel: 0844 8713011 www.atgtickets.com/birmingham Mitchell Brunings returns to Birmingham with his live band to perform Marley Reprised for a second year. A unique opportunity for a full evening of Bob Marley’s greatest hits, bringing the reggae star back to life with Mitchell’s soulful, almost identical voice.

WHAT: Leamington Food Festival WHEN: 8 and 9 September WHERE: Royal Pump Gardens, tel: 01926 470634 www.leamingtonfoodfestival.co.uk More than 150 stalls showcase the very best in local food and drink with an action-packed programme across two days. Includes demonstrations, masterclasses and loads of free entertainment.

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WHAT’S ON

WHAT: Paul Weller WHEN: 24 August WHERE: Genting Arena, tel: 0844 338 8000 www.theticketfactory.com Continuing his never-ending creative peak, Weller is touring after the release of his thirteenth studio album, A Kind Revolution. With support from Stone Foundation.

WHAT: Romeo and Juliet

WHAT: Piano Week

WHEN: Now until 21 September

WHEN: 23 July to 4 August

WHERE: Royal Shakespeare Theatre,

WHERE: Moreton Hall School,

tel: 01789 403493

www.pianoweek.com

www.rsc.org.uk

A wonderful opportunity to enjoy some stunning music as the International Festival & Summer School holds its third consecutive summer residency at Moreton Hall School. The 13-strong faculty of international concert pianists will also play alongside world-renowned guest artist, Stephen Kovacevich.

Shakespeare’s most famous story of love at first sight explodes with intense passion in this contemporary production with heart-breaking consequences.

WHAT: Gabrielle WHEN: 8 August WHERE: Birmingham O2 Institute, www.academymusicgroup.com/o2institutebirmingham The record-breaking, multi-million selling, chart-topping superstar is back. This year not only will she release her new album, Under My Skin, but she’s also playing five very special, intimate shows.

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WHAT: Farmfoods British Par 3 Championship WHEN: 7 to 10 August WHERE: Nailcote Hall, tel: 02476 466174 www.nailcotehall.co.uk The prestigious championship at Nailcote Hall features a host of stars from all walks of life – including top golfers Charley Hull, Ian Woosnam and Tony Jacklin and Birmingham Living cover boys James and Oliver Phelps.

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WHAT’S ON

WHAT: ‘Motown’ Party with Colin Sugarfoot Mills WHEN: 8 September WHERE: Nailcote Hall, tel: 02476 466174 www.nailcotehall.co.uk A party night full of your favourite Motown and classic soul hits from TV’s Stars In Your Eyes winner as Billy Ocean.

WHAT: Matilda the Musical WHEN: Now until 8 September WHERE: Birmingham Hippodrome, tel: 0844 338 5000 WHAT: An Evening with Adam Henson

www.birminghamhippodrome.com

WHEN: 6 September

The multi-award winning musical from the Royal Shakespeare Company, inspired by the much-loved book by Roald Dahl. Written by Dennis Kelly with original songs by Tim Minchin, this is an awesome show.

WHERE: Town Hall, box office: 0121 345 0600 www.thsh.co.uk The Countryfile presenter is perhaps the best-known farmer in the UK, presenting his own section on TV to seven million viewers every Sunday evening. Join Adam as he shares stories about his farming life, TV career and the running of Cotswold Farm Park.

WHAT: The Comedy About A Bank Robbery WHEN: 23 August to 8 September WHERE: Birmingham Rep, tel: 0121 245 2024 www.birmingham-rep.co.uk Ocean’s Eleven meets the Marx Brothers in this dynamite new comedy direct from the West End. Following the phenomenal success of The Play That Goes Wrong, the Mischief Theatre return with their latest smash hit.

WHAT: John Grant WHEN: 16 August WHERE: Symphony Hall, box office: 0121 345 0600 www.thsh.co.uk John Grant has been on an incredible journey, from escaping a life of addiction to winning awards, accolades and Top 20 chart positions, and collaborating with Sinead O’Connor, Goldfrapp, Elton John and Hercules & Love Affair. Fresh from supporting Elbow, this will be the first-ever standing gig at Symphony Hall.

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WHAT’S ON

WHAT: The Princess and

WHAT: Solihull Summer Fest

the Giant

WHEN: 25 and 26 August

WHEN: 25 August

WHERE: Tudor Grange Park,

WHERE: Martineau Gardens,

www.solihullsummerfest.co.uk

Edgbaston

Musical Sunshine returns to Solihull and this year’s festival is set to be the biggest and best yet with a line-up that includes band legends such as Busted, Sister Sledge, Blue and the latest X-Factor winners, Rak-Su.

www.folksytheatre.co.uk Music, puppetry and wonderful characters, this is a brilliantly fun and silly, yet moving, family show based on the children’s book by Caryl Hart. Bring along your picnics, blankets and friends.

WHAT: Kevin Hart WHEN: 30 August WHERE: Arena Birmingham, tel: 0844 338 8000 www.theticketfactory.com The legendary comedian has been pretty busy since the last time he was in Brum with his What Now tour. The first comedian to sell-out an NFL stadium returns with his hysterical new show, The Kevin Hart Irresponsible Tour.

WHAT: Jeremy Hardy Live WHEN: 9 September WHERE: The Old Rep Theatre, tel: 0121 359 9444 www.oldreptheatre.co.uk Well known for his appearances on the News Quiz and I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue, Jeremy Hardy is in his fourth decade as a stand-up and has never stopped doing live shows since 1984.

WHAT: Lost & Found: Mischief And Mystery In Moomin Valley WHEN: 10 and 11 August WHERE: Mac Birmingham, tel: 0121 446 3232 www.macarts.co.uk Open a book and discover a world where anything is possible. Magical puppetry, original music and interactive play will delight young audiences aged four to seven years. Expect snow, surprises and plenty of Moomin mischief.

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IN THE CITY WITH DAVID PARDOE OF THE MAILBOX

TELL US ABOUT YOURSELF I’m head of marketing, retail and tenant engagement at the Mailbox, the second largest mixed-use building in the country after the Shard in London! It’s a cool place to work, with 45 shops, restaurants and bars, two hotels, offices, residential apartments, a car park, the BBC and a fab cinema. HOW DO YOU GET INTO TOWN? I take the train straight into the city centre – it’s so convenient and much better than battling on the M6. Then it’s just a five-minute walk from New Street station. It’s actually a shorter distance from the station to the Mailbox than it is from the front of the Mailbox to the Cube at the back. I have counted my steps! HOW’S THE COMMUTE? I live in Shropshire, which sounds a long way away, but it only takes me 45 minutes from home to work. I typically spend my train journeys catching up on e-mails, reading, listening to music and gazing out of the window enjoying the scenery. IS BRUM A GOOD PLACE TO WORK IN? It’s a fantastic place to work! It has such a great energy with some incredibly passionate and friendly people. Thanks to a huge amount of investment, we are now a major player on the global straight. We are definitely not the second city; there’s nothing second about Birmingham – we are the first city outside of London! INDEPENDENTS CALL:

More independent shops would add further to

Birmingham’s already great retail offering, says the

Mailbox’s David Pardoe

COFFEE BREAK? I love a cappuccino and Tom’s Kitchen Deli in the Mailbox tends to be my first choice and York’s by New Street station is convenient. LUNCHTIME? The food at Tom’s Kitchen is amazing and the Ivy on Temple Row is also fab. It’s great for celebrating a special occasion – I treated my wife there recently for her birthday. POWERWALKING? I tend to be on my feet quite a bit at work and I usually do about 18,000 steps a day so that keeps me fit and at weekends I enjoy cycling. The canal at the back of the Mailbox is a great place to go for fresh air. WHERE’S YOUR FAVOURITE PART OF THE CITY? Symphony Hall. It’s one of the city’s jewels and has tremendous character – and the finest acoustics in the country. AFTERWORK PINT? A beer from the Malmaison bar is my first choice for a quick after-work tipple. It has a great chilled atmosphere and when live music or a DJ is playing it’s even better. I also like the Canal House in the summer as it has a great sun terrace. HOW CAN THE CITY BE MADE BETTER? I would love to see more independent shops to complement the terrific retail offer that we have. I also think public landscaping could be improved further. The city has shown it can be bold by attracting the likes of HSBC and the Commonwealth Games and we must continue that. This is our time! I

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August issue (issue 71)  
August issue (issue 71)  
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