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FREE THINKING with Pete and Ali Lemmey, Bob Imlach and Vicky Morland of Liberty Fields



e imaginary members of The All Things Autumn Club stand smiling in the stillness, drawing long deep breaths of cold, sharp air, laced with earth and the first of the log fires. We plough and crunch through fertile mulch in heavy boots, faces warmed in the low-slung sun. Come the night we listen to the silence. Actual. Silence. Until, “hurrumph” sing the frogs, an unlikely choir in the glow of a floodlight moon, their attentive audience the likes of us and a trillion perfect stars. And so to November. Sherborne of course remembers the men and women who have sacrificed themselves to protect the freedoms we often take for granted today in services and talks across town. We welcome new contributors, James Hull of The Rusty Pig Company and Millie Neville-Jones as she embarks on life post-A levels. Rebecca de Pelet shares some exciting news and our very own Bake Off legend Val Stones shares a delicious recipe from her new book. Katharine and Jo meet the team behind Liberty Fields and learn about their crusade to preserve Dorset and south Somerset’s indigenous cider apple trees (I consider use of the phrase ‘Mother Orchard’ in this edition as something of an accolade). On the subject of which, congratulations abound to our friend Sasha Matkevich and his tirelessly hardworking team at The Green restaurant — deserved winners of a 2019 Michelin Bib Gourmand. Have a wonderful month. Glen Cheyne, Editor @sherbornetimes @sherborne_times

CONTRIBUTORS Editorial and creative direction Glen Cheyne Design Andy Gerrard @round_studio Sub editors Jay Armstrong @jayarmstrong_ Elaine Taylor Photography Katharine Davies @Katharine_KDP Feature writer Jo Denbury @jo_denbury Editorial assistant Helen Brown Illustrations Elizabeth Watson @DandybirdDesign Print Pureprint Distribution team David Elsmore David and Susan Joby Christine Knott Sarah Morgan Mary and Roger Napper Alfie Neville-Jones Mark and Miranda Pender Claire Pilley Geoff Wood

Simon Barber Evolver Magazine @SimonEvolver David Birley

Andy Hastie Cinematheque

Elisabeth Bletsoe Sherborne Museum @SherborneMuseum

Sarah Hitch The Sanctuary Beauty Rooms @SanctuaryDorset

Adrian Bright Sherborne Community Church

Lizzie Kingsbury Sherborne and District Dementia Action Alliance @Dementia_Action

Richard Bromell ASFAV Charterhouse Auctioneers and Valuers @CharterhouseAV Mike Burks The Gardens Group @TheGardensGroup Antonia Burt Beauhemia @Beauhemia Cindy Chant Sherborne Walks @sherbornewalks Dan Chiappa-Patching Sherborne Preparatory School @Sherborneprep Ali Cockrean @AliCockrean Gillian M Constable DWT Sherborne Group @DorsetWildlife Jill Cook The London Road Clinic @56londonroad David Copp

81 Cheap Street Sherborne Dorset DT9 3BA 01935 315556 @sherbornetimes Sherborne Times is printed on Edixion Offset, an FSC® and EU Ecolabel certified paper. It goes without saying that once thoroughly well read, this magazine is easily recycled and we actively encourage you to do so. Whilst every care has been taken to ensure that the data in this publication is accurate, neither Sherborne Times nor its editorial contributors can accept, and hereby disclaim, any liability to any party to loss or damage caused by errors or omissions resulting from negligence, accident or any other cause. Sherborne Times does not officially endorse any advertising material included within this publication. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in any retrieval system, or transmitted in any form electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise - without prior permission from Sherborne Times. Additional photography: contributor's own, Shutterstock and iStock

4 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

Craig Hardaker Communifit

Rebecca de Pelet TEDx Sherborne Jenny Dickinson Dear to Me Studio, Fine Stationery @DearToMeStudio Melanie Fermor Dorset Wildlife Trust @DorsetWildlife Jimmy Flynn Milborne Port Computers @MPortComputers Val Fogarty Sherborne Science Cafe Andrew Fort B.A. (Econ.) CFPcm Chartered MCSI APFS Fort Financial Planning Andy Foster Raise Architects @raisearchitects Paul Gammage and Anita Light EweMove Sherborne @ewemoveyeovil James Hull The Rusty Pig Company

Colin Lambert Mark Lewis Symonds and Sampson @symsam Sasha Matkevich The Green Restaurant @greensherborne Jo Matthews Fired Earth @FiredEarthUK Millie Neville-Jones Suzy Newton Partners in Design Mark Newton-Clarke MA VetMB PhD MRCVS Newton Clarke Veterinary Partnership @swanhousevet Kate Norris Mogers Drewett Solicitors @mogersdrewett Kitty Oakshott Upstairs Downstairs Interiors @updowninteriors Simon Partridge SPFit @spfitsherborne Lucy Pollard Mike Riley Riley’s Cycles @rileyscycles Dr Tim Robinson MB BS MSc MRCGP DRCOG MFHom Glencairn House Clinic Poppy Simonson MSc BVSc MRCVS Kingston Veterinary Group @TheKingstonVets Julia Skelhorn Sherborne Scribblers Paul Stickland Black Shed Flowers @NaughtyDinosaur Jonathan Stones Sherborne Literary Society @SherborneLitSoc Val Stones @valstones Wayne Winstone Winstone’s Books @winstonebooks

68 8

What’s On

NOVEMBER 2018 64 Gardening

130 Directory

22 Shopping Guide


132 Folk Tales

26 Wild Dorset

80 Food and Drink

134 Community

30 Family

92 Animal Care

136 Short Story

38 Art

98 Cycling

139 Literature Review

40 History

100 Body and Mind

140 Pause for Thought

44 Architecture

118 Property

141 Crossword

48 Antiques

126 Finance

142 Out and About

50 Interiors

128 Tech | 5

You wait for a stunning new Audi, then two arrive at once. Be among the first to meet the striking new Audi A1 and the more spacious new Audi Q3.

Register your interest at: or call 01935 574981

Yeovil Audi. Look No Further. Yeovil Audi Houndstone Business Park, Mead Avenue, Yeovil, Somerset BA22 8RT

Official EU fuel consumption figures not yet available.

01935 574981

ď‚ ď‚‚

Mead Ave

Yeovil Audi

Av e M ea d

Lu ft on W ay

ve Western A

Houndstone Business Park

Houndstone Retail Park

n Way Stourto

@elizabethwatsonillustrations 8 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

NOVEMBER 2018 Listings

Wednesdays 1.10pm-2pm

“My Time” Carers’ Support Group


Lunchtime relaxation and

Mondays 2pm-3.30pm


The Shielings, The Avenue, DT9 3AJ.

‘Feel Better with a Book’ group

Digby Memorial Hall. £5. No need to book.

Sherborne Library, Hound St. Would you enjoy listening or taking part in or 07817 624081

Advice, relaxed atmosphere, coffee and a chat. 01935 601499 or 01935 816321



Fridays 2pm from Waitrose

shared reading aloud with a small and

Thursdays term-time 10.15am-12pm

Sherborne Health Walks

friendly group? Free. 01935 812683

Local Vocals - Community-based


Acapella Choir

Free, friendly walk around Sherborne.

Last Monday of month 5pm-6pm

Digby Memorial Hall. Worldwide

Bookchat Sherborne Library, Hound St. A lively book discussion group, new members welcome


07825 691508


popular/traditional songs. No musical

Monday 29th October - Saturday

Cards for Good Causes

knowledge/audition required. lesley@

22nd December


Sherborne TIC, Digby Rd. Charity Christmas cards. 01935 815341

____________________________ Thursday 1st - Friday 16th 9.30am5pm Tues - Sat Exhibition of New Work by Charles Anderson, Mhairi McGregor and Jackie Philip The Jerram Gallery, Half Moon St. 01935 815261

First Thursday of each month 9.30am

Tuesdays and Thursdays 10.30am Sherborne Town Walk From Sherborne TIC, Digby Road. 1½-2 hrs with Blue Badge Guide Cindy. 1000 years of history for £6




Friday 2nd 7.30pm

From Sherborne Barbers, Cheap St. Free

Acoustic by Candlelight by Jo Burt

owners and entrepreneurs. FB: Netwalk

from TIC, 01935 873814. In aid of St

walk and talk with other small business

St Andrew’s Church, Yetminster. Tickets

Sherborne Instagram: yourtimecoaching

Andrew’s Church Restoration

Twitter @yt_coaching



Saturday 3rd 2.30pm

First Thursday of each month

Talk - An Artist’s View


of C19th Rural Britain

Airport • Seaport • Executive School Exeats • Corporate Accounts Local & Long Journeys As Standard: German engineering, leather interiors, Swiss time-keeping, reliable and proactive drivers


01258 446 300 • 0778 878 8830 | 9

WHAT'S ON ____________________________ Every Tuesday 10am-11.30am ____________________________

Sherborne Breastfeeding Group

Please share your recommendations and contacts via FaceBook @sherborneparents

Monday afternoons

Sherborne Children’s Centre, Tinney’s Lane



Leigh Village Hall. Facebook

Attachment Parenting UK

Monday and Saturday 9.30am



Child-friendly Mini

Wednesday 14th

West End Hall. Cloth nappy demo by

Trampoline Fitness

Doodles Play Cafe

Loving by Nature. @APUKSherborne

Sherborne West End Hall.

1 Abbey Rd, DT9 3LE. Join Doodles on

____________________________ or search Facebook



Every 2nd Monday 1pm-3pm

through November


Ballet and Street Dance

Wednesdays 9.30am

Sherborne Primary School. From 2.5

Squats and Tots



Digby Hall, Hound St. 01935 425383


their 1st birthday with celebration cake!

In aid of the Sherborne and Yeovil Link

Thursday 8th 2.30pm


Sherborne and District Gardeners’

Saturday 3rd from 5pm

Assoc. Talk - Abbotsbury, Past,

Saturday 10th 7.30pm

Fireworks Extravaganza

Present and Future

Sherborne Chamber Choir -

Sherborne (New) Castle, New Road.

Digby Hall, Hound St. 01935 389375

Remembrance in Words and Music


Thursday 8th - Friday 9th

Tuesday 6th 7pm

Longburton Remembers

to Royal British Legion Poppy Appeal.

Society, Service and Sacrifice:

St James the Great, Longburton DT9

Tickets: TIC, 01963 364399


of Chernobyl Children’s Lifeline


Sherborne Abbey, DT9 3LQ. Proceeds Tickets: TIC 01935 815341


5PD. Tickets £10, 01963 210548

Monday 12th 9.30am-3.30pm


West Country Embroiderers -

Tickets: Sherborne TIC. 01935 815341

Friday 9th 2.30pm

Scrappy Birds

Somerset and Dorset Family


History Society Talk: Monumental

Digby Hall, Hound Street. Tutor

Tuesday 6th 8pm

Inscriptions - Family History on

Sherborne Historical Society Talk:

Tablets of Stone

The Durotriges - New Research

Raleigh Hall, Digby Rd. Pay at the door

Sherborne Remembers WW1 Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Rd.

Digby Hall, Hound Street. Non-

Friday 9th 7.30pm


Talk - 1914-18 And All That

Wednesday 7th 3.30pm

Leigh Village Hall DT9 6HL.

Roger Rosewell:



members: £5

and 6.45pm

Geraldine Field. Info: 01963 34696

Tickets £7.50: 01935 872664


Painting on Light

Saturday 10th 10am-12pm

Digby Hall, Hound St. £7 non-members.

Coffee Morning and Crafts

Monday 12th 7.30pm

Cheap Street Methodist Church Hall.

MOVIOLA: The Bookshop

10 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

NOVEMBER 2018 Leigh Village Hall, DT9 6HL. £6,

Digby Tap, DT9 3NS. Branch meeting


events/moviola 01935 873269

ArtsLink Artist Demo -

interval ice creams. ____________________________

(Pub of the Year nominations)

Saturday 17th 2.30pm-4.30pm


Stunning Effects in Pastels

Friday 16th 1.45pm-2.25pm

Digby Church Hall, Digby Rd.

Recital by Jazz Musicians Cheap Street Church, DT9 3BJ.

Sherborne School musicians. Free.

Tickets from TIC 01935 815341.



Saturday 17th 6.30pm

Saturday 17th 10am-2pm

Royal Marines Association

Thornford Pre-School

Band Brass Quintet

Wednesday 14th 7.30pm

Christmas Fair

ArtsLink Flicks -

Thornford Village Hall, Pound Rd,

St Michael’s Church, North Cadbury.

DT9 6QB. Stalls, raffle, face-painting

Journey’s End 12a Digby Church Hall, Digby Rd.

and Father Christmas!

Tickets from TIC 01935 815341.


Tickets on the door or from North Cadbury Shop or 01963 440929.

Proceeds to Friends of St Michael’s.


Saturday 17th 10am-2pm

Saturday 17th 7.30pm


Leigh Christmas Fair

Dorset Police Male Voice Choir

Wednesday 14th 8pm

Leigh Village Hall, DT9 6HL. Traders,

Martock Church. Tickets £9 or £8 -

refreshments, choir, raffle.

West Dorset CAMRA

01755 467896,

THE DIAMOND FAMILY ARCHIVE SATURDAY 10TH NOVEMBER Doors 7pm, Start 8pm “Mesmerising, melancholic psychedelic soundscapes” Suggested donation £7. Profits to Sherborne Food Bank


A series of talks, live performances and screenings + drinks of an interesting ilk In association with | 11

WHAT'S ON 01935 813131

(see feature on page 134)

Sherborne Sports Centre

Wednesday 21st 2.30pm

Thursday 29th 7.30pm

Charity Chase

Sherborne WI - Christmas

Sherborne Floral Group - Open



Evening “On a Starry Night”

Supporting Friends of the Yeatman Hospital.

Catholic Church Hall. For entry into

Digby Hall, Hound Street. With Emily


Cheap Street Christmas Tree Festival



____________________________ Sunday 18th 9am-10.30am



Broomhead. 01935 813316

Thursday 22nd

Friday 30th 6pm-9pm

Visiting Artists Tindall

The Merry Drinks of Winter

Recital Series

Vineyards Wine and Spirits Festival.

Tindall Recital Hall, Sherborne School, DT9 3AP. Tickets: 01935 812249


Digby Hall, Digby Rd. Sherborne.

Tickets £15 from Vineyards. 01935 815544


Sunday 18th 3pm

Friday 23rd 7pm

Friday 30th Tues-Sat 9.30am-5pm

Wessex Strings Concert

Sherborne Literary Society -

Christmas Exhibition

Cheap Street Church. Tickets £9

Earth, Air, Fire, Water

The Jerram Gallery, Half Moon Street,


sequence of poems. Tickets: Winstone’s

Sherborne TIC or £10 on the door.

Raleigh Hall, Digby Rd, DT9 3NL. A

Monday 19th 7.30pm

01935 816128

Insight Lecture: Fierce


DT9 3LN New work by 15 artists. 01935 815261


Workshops and Classes


Friday 23rd 7pm

Memorial Hall, Digby Rd. 01935

Make We Merry As We May


Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Rd.



with Frances Eustace

Tuesday 20th 8pm

01935 812252

Mondays 9.30am-10.30am


Yoga Flow

Chivalry Really About?

Friday 23rd 7.30pm

Digby Hall, Hound St.

ArtsReach presents The Liberty

Chetnole Village Hall. £6 per drop-in



Yoga with Emma

Chetnole Village Hall. Tickets/info



7.45pm - 8.45pm, Sherborne

Talk - What is Medieval

Tree – A Celebration of Robin

10am-11am, Milborne Port Village Hall

Monday 26th 7.30pm

Dance Academy Tuesdays

Memorial Hall, Digby Rd. Tickets

6.15pm-7.15pm, Thornford Village Hall



01935 812452. Wednesday 28th 7.30pm Wednesday 21st

Sherborne Science Café:

Kate Adie – My Life and

Building with Dirt to Clean

Times as a TV Correspondent

Our Homes

The Eastbury Hotel, Long Street, DT9

Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Rd.

12 | Sherborne Times | November 2018


01935 873555

Insight Lecture: What is Truth?

3BY. Talk and 2 course lunch. Tickets:

class 07983 100445

7.30pm-8.30pm, Thornford Village Hall 6pm-7pm, Digby Memorial Hall, Sherborne 7.15pm-8.15pm, Digby Memorial Hall, Sherborne

Thursdays 11.15am-12.15pm,

Sherborne Dance Academy

NOVEMBER 2018 ____________________________

abilities welcome. £5. No need to book.

Tinney’s Lane Youth Centre, Sherborne.


those experiencing the symptoms of

Lunchtime Hatha Yoga

Thursdays 2.30pm-4pm

Digby Memorial Hall. All levels and

ArtsLink Parkinson’s Dance

Mondays 10.30am-12pm or 07817 624081

Class with movements designed for

Yoga with Gemma Longburton Village Hall. 07812 593314

Throughout November

Parkinson’s and social time. Free -


and December


The Slipped Stitch Workshops -

Mondays 7pm-8pm

from felting to crochet and sewing

Kunda Dance

1 Cheap St. 01935 508249,

Thursdays 7pm-9.30pm


No 1 Wheelwright Studios, Thornford

Yetminster Sports Club. Booking essential

- Bev 07983 100445

donations welcome. 01935 815899

____________________________ Art Club@Thornford for Adults DT9 6QE. With Ali Cockrean. £15 per


session (tuition only) or £20 (materials

Wednesdays 9am-10am

inc). 07742 888302, alicockrean@gmail.

Yoga Flow Another Little World, Corton Denham.

com or

Booking essential - Bev 07983 100445


Sunday 18th 1.30pm–4.30pm


Sherborne Folk Band Workshop

Wednesdays 12.10pm-1pm

Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Road DT9


Day Trips ____________________________ Winchester Christmas Market Sunday 2nd December Adult £20.00, Club £18.00

____________________________ Bournemouth Gardens of light and Christmas Market Sunday 9th December Adults £21.00, Club £19.00


Short breaks

Taylors Christmas Meal and



BRUGGE Christmas Shopper

Sunday 16th December

1st – 2nd December

Adult £37.50, Club £35.50

2 Days £145.00



01935 423177 | 13

WHAT'S ON 3NL. All levels and all instruments.

Digby Hall, Hound Street.

DT9 5NS. 3pm start


Welton Rovers (H)

Saturday 10th 10am-4pm

Saturday 10th

Sherborne Annual

Bishop Sutton (A)

Christmas Craft and Gift Fair

Saturday 17th

Memorial Hall, Digby Rd. 01749 677049

Wells City (A)

£10 adv/£12 on door. 01935 817905 ____________________________

Fairs and Markets ____________________________

Entrance £1. 01963 370986

Saturday 3rd

Saturday 24th


Warminster (H)

Saturday 17th 9.30am-4pm


Sherborne Book Fair Memorial Hall, Digby Rd.

Free admission. 01803 613356

____________________________ Saturday 24th 9am-3.30pm Thursdays and Saturdays

Vintage Market

Pannier Market

Memorial Hall, Digby Rd. 07809 387594

The Parade



Sherborne RFC First XV Southern Counties South.

Thursdays 9am-11.30am


Country Market


Church Hall, Digby Road

Sundays 9am


Digby Etape Cycling Club Ride

Walcot (H)

Every third Friday 9am-1pm

From Riley’s Cycles. 20-30 miles,

Saturday 10th

bike recommended. FB Digby Etape

Saturday 17th

The Terrace Playing Fields, DT9 5NS. 2.30pm start Saturday 3rd

average 12-15 mph. Drop bar road

D&W Cup Semi Final

Sherborne Cycling Club or 07443 490442

Bradford on Avon (H)


Saturday 24th

(exc. April and December)

Tuesdays and Thursdays

D&W Cup Semi Final




Saturday Antiques

Mixed Touch Rugby

and Flea Market

Sherborne School floodlit astroturf,

Farmers’ Market Cheap Street

____________________________ Every fourth Saturday

Church Hall, Digby Rd

____________________________ Friday 9th and Saturday 10th 12pm-6pm

Ottery Lane DT9 6EE. Novices very

welcome. £2 per session, first four sessions free. 07887 800803


To include your event in our FREE

Christmas Gift Fair

listings please email details – date/

Cumberland House, Greenhill,


Weldmar. 07802 500518

the 5th of each preceding month to

Sherborne DT9 4EP. In aid of

contact (in approx 20 words) – by


Saturday 10th 8.30am (trade) 9.30am (public) until 4pm

Sherborne Town FC

Due to the volume of events received

Chasty Cottage Antiques

First XI Toolstation Western League

we are regrettably unable to

and Collectables Fair 14 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

Division 1. Terrace Playing Fields,

acknowledge or include them all.


SATURDAY 15TH DECEMBER Doors 7pm, Start 8pm

“Duke Garwood’s music has an otherworldly, heady quality suggesting sun-baked desert days, croc-skin boots and a Chevrolet gently rolling along empty highways” The Guardian Tickets £10 in advance from CHURCH STUDIO HAYDON DORSET DT9 5JB

A series of talks, live performances and screenings + food and drink of an interesting ilk In association with

PREVIEW In association with

Robin Hood and Other English Radicals Friday 23rd November, 7.30pm Village Hall, Chetnole DT9 6NU. £10/£6. 01935 873555 Sunday 25th November, 7.30pm

Village Hall, Sandford Orcas, DT9 4RX. £10/£6. 01963 220208

To live outside the law you must be honest. For over 600

of the world are mended by subversion and trickery.

imagination. With Little John, Will Scarlet, Much the miller’s

Nick Hennessey, sing and tell their way deep into the secret,

Hood inhabits a place in the leafy shadows of our minds –

and harsher histories of English dissenters, tricksters and radicals.

years stories of Robin Hood have held sway in the English

son, Friar Tuck and the rest of the Merry Fellowship, Robin

somewhere where it’s always high summer, where venison is

always being roasted, where tyranny rides roughshod over the

green freedoms of England and where the wrongs and injustices 16 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

Two of Britain’s leading storytellers, Hugh Lupton and

dappled heart of Sherwood and at the same time, tell the true

Mischievous, poignant and radical, this is storytelling at its best.

ARTIST AT WORK No. 1: SILVER BIRCH, Laurence Belbin, Oil on canvas, 16” x 12”, unframed, £525 In an ungainly ruse to adorn our walls and delight our screen-worn eyes, each month we will be inviting a local artist to exhibit work in our offices and tell their story on these pages. We begin with our good friend, Laurence Belbin.

My work is about light, shape and colour. I draw most days and the ‘line’ I achieve in my drawings, I like to have in my paintings too. I paint mainly en plein air all year round.

Rather than paint a picture of light, I paint the illusion

of the light itself. I want the painting to give the viewer the sensation that the painting is the light source and that the

longer one looks, the brighter it is perceived. In some of my

paintings I have a different aim and that is to concentrate on colour and shape.

As an artist I am always trying to find ways of achieving

these aims and this means adjusting colours and tones, and simplifying shapes.

My work has changed quite considerably over the years. It’s

a continual process to move my work on, to evolve and develop

as an artist. I believe the way to paint is, quite simply, ‘honestly’. It is important that as the painter I know that what I have produced is truthful and painted with feeling. LB @laurencebelbinartist | 17



Andy Hastie, Cinematheque


t the time of writing, Cinematheque has just held the opening night of its 37th season at the Swan Theatre in Yeovil. I’m pleased to say it was a positive success, with a good crowd of enthusiastic filmophiles greatly enjoying themselves in our new home. I look forward to meeting more people at our next meetings. There will be no shows in November as the Swan Theatre are producing Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None; check their website for details. Moving on to December, we are showing Lost in Paris on the 5th, and the classic 400 Blows (Les Quatre Cents Coups) on the 19th; these two very different films are separated by 58 years but have similarities in their structure. Lost in Paris, written by and starring Fiona Gordon and Dominique Abel, finds an unworldly Canadian librarian (Gordon), visiting Paris to save her scatty aunt from being put in a home. Anyone less suitable to help would be hard to find. Predictably, she soon loses her possessions and is alone and desperate, when Dom, a homeless tramp (Abel) turns up. Hilarity ensues! This is a wonderfully sweet-natured, funny, timeless film, packed with (often sophisticated) laugh-out-loud visual humour and physical comedy. Shot on location in Paris, it wrings every possible joke and gag from the city whilst also being inventive and smart. ‘It’s a little gem.’ (Peter Bradshaw, The Guardian). Come along for a big laugh. The director Francois Truffaut’s 1959 feature debut is the semi-autobiographical 400 Blows (Les Quatre Cents Coups), a tale of Antoine, an unwanted child who turns to mild crime (theft) and ends up in a reform school. This was one of the first films of the French New Wave and, as such, an important landmark in the history of French cinema. It heralded a move away from the studiobound, star-packed literary adaptations popular at the time. Truffaut argued against the screenplay of a film taking artistic precedence and helped develop the ‘Auteur Theory’, where the director’s input and personal vision is key. This belief moved the film out on location to the Paris streets, and into the claustrophobic apartment where Antoine lives with his mother and step-father. Using the technique of a more realistic, natural filming, enforced by smaller budgets and crews, has influenced how most European cinema is produced today. 400 Blows is ‘a heart-breaking observation of adolescence’ (Rotten Tomatoes). Antoine clashes with all authority - parents, school, detention centre - but there are lighter moments when a rich vein of humour is apparent. The freeze-frame of Antoine’s face from the film’s final scene at the beach is a famous, iconic image of European cinema from a film which can genuinely be called a classic. Not to be missed, so put a note in your diary!

18 | Sherborne Times | November 2018 | 19



nday, 2nd December SHERBORNE FESTIVE SHOPPING DAY Sunday 2nd December Antonia Burt



Supported by

t's the time of year when Sherborne begins to sparkle once again with festive fun. Christmas lights twinkle all over town, carol singers serenade locals and tourists alike and Sherborne Town Band entertains us royally as Sherborne Festive Shopping Day getsOrganisers underway on Sunday 2nd December. The town's increasingly popular 'Love a Local Christmas' event takes place between @SherborneFestiveShopping 10am and 4pm, has free entry, and offers a fabulous family day out while raising awareness of many @SherborneCOT local charities. Oh – and Santa Claus really IS coming to town! Supported During the day, the town puts on aby whole host of different musical, entertaining and fun for all ages. This year’s event includesMUSIC, balloon modellers, face painters, a stilt walker, EY CHURCH activities SERVICES BANDS & CHOIRS ABBEY CHURCH the Yeovil Ukulele Group, dancing from (amongst others) the Black Rock Dancers and DanceSERVICES and singing from various choirs as STREET well as the ENTERTAINMENT wonderful Sherborne Abbey Choristers. STMAS TREEAcademy, FESTIVAL Sherborne Town Band and festive bagpipes add to the musical entertainment. Cheap Street CHRISTMAS TREE FESTIVAL and Digby Road will be closed to traffic to allow for the street entertainment and market stalls. DREN’S COMPETITION FESTIVE SHOPS & STALLS @Sherborn Abbey104 FM will be broadcasting live all day from The Conduit. CHILDREN’S COMPETITION @SherborneCO Delicious local produce will be available and pop-up shops and stalls will offer individual and LOCAL PRODUCE SANTA’S GROTTO imaginative gifts for all the family. Every year, the shops outdo themselves with their beautiful SANTA’S GROTTO ABBEY CHURCH Christmas displays and window dressings, and are full SERVICES to bursting with gift ideas to satisfy even the MUSIC, BANDS PLACES EAT & shops, DRINK Y104 LIVE BROADCAST most difficult person on your Christmas list! The town's TO many coffee pubs and restaurants ABBEY104 LIVE BROADCAST will have delicious festive treats CHRISTMAS and the grown-ups can FESTIVAL even enjoy a glass or two of mulled wine STREET ENTERT TREE while soaking up the seasonal atmosphere. e Organisers houtside T Father Christmas will be taking up residence in his Grotto CHILDREN’S COMPETITION uit the Post Office and every FESTIVE SHOPS @SherborneFestiveShopping d£2). n o little visitor will receive a gift (in return for a small entry fee of Carol services will be held in the C NO VEHICLE ACCESS TO CHEAP STREET OR DIGBY ROAD ON 2ND DEC UNTIL 6PM @SherborneCOT Abbey throughout the afternoon. Visitors are welcome to attend and enjoy the stunning backdrop PLEASE NOTE: NO VEHICLE TO CHEAP ORNE CHAMBER OF TRADE & COMMERCE, SUPPORTED BY SHERBORNE TOWNGROTTO COUNCIL WWW.SHERBORNECHAMBER.CO.UK ACCESS LOCAL PRO SANTA’S of its spectacular, ceiling-high Christmas tree and traditional nativityBYscene. CheapCHAMBER Street Church ORGANISED SHERBORNE OF TRADE & COMMERCE, SUPPO HURCH MUSIC, BANDS & CHOIRS stages its ever-popular Christmas Tree Festival, featuring dozens of twinkling 09/10/2018 trees all delightfully ing 2018.indd SERVICES 1 11:49:08 PLACES TO EAT ABBEY104 LIVE BROADCAST ST Full Page Festivedisplay Shoppingis2018.indd and individually decorated. Castle Gardens' award-winning Christmas just five1minutes' walk from the centre of town and will be open to visitors until 6pm. STREET ENTERTAINMENT AS TREE FESTIVAL e gather at the top of Cheap Street ready for the off. Everyone is welcome Thwill At 4pm, the parade t dui to join in as the parade Cheap Street towards the Conduit, where the town's Con makes its way down N’S COMPETITION FESTIVE SHOPS & STALLS Christmas Tree will be illuminated. ends just in time for visitors to join Sherborne PLEASE NOTE:The NOday VEHICLE ACCESS TO CHEAP STREET Abbey's OR DIGBY ROAD ON annual family-friendly Christingle service at 5pm. ItOF really is & the most wonderful timeBY ofSHERBORNE the year! TOWN COUNCIL WWW ORGANISED BY SHERBORNE CHAMBER TRADE COMMERCE, SUPPORTED LOCAL PRODUCE TA’S GROTTO Festive Shopping Day is organised by volunteers from Sherborne Chamber of Trade and ST Full Page Festive ShoppingSherborne 2018.indd 1 Cottages and Apartments, The Paddock Project, supported by Sherborne Town Council, PLACES TO EAT & DRINK 4 LIVE BROADCAST Sherborne Girls School, Abbey104 FM and both the town’s Rotary Clubs. To keep up to date with the latest news follow us on Facebook and Twitter.




ARADE & LIGHTING THE TREE @SherborneFestiveShopping





8.indd 1

09/10/2018 11:49:08

20 | Sherborne Times | November 2018



Sunday, 2nd December

Supported by

Organisers @SherborneFestiveShopping @SherborneCOT

The it du Con















Shopping Guide

Sherborne Sausages, £6.80/lb, Parson’s the Butcher

Semifreddo, £25, Ecco Gelato

LOW MILEAGE Jenny Dickinson, Dear To Me Studio

Sherborne certainly doesn’t leave you wanting when it comes to locally-made produce. It even has its own sausage! 22 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

Sherborne Castle Sparkling Wine, £21.99 Vineyards

Sourdough Loaves, from £2.20 Reeve the Baker

Indian Spiced Tomato Chutney, £3.90 Pear Tree Deli

Reads Coffee, from £5.50 Oliver’s Coffee House or | 23


OPEN 9:30 AM - 5:00 PM     33 CHEAP STREET, SHERBORNE, DT9 3PU      PHONE 01935 816551


O13O5 265223

24 | Sherborne Times | November 2018


O1935 814O27


A short trip away, but a million miles from the everyday. Find out more & donate at:

Photo © Damian Garcia

Christmas Party Tribute Nights COME AND JOIN US FOR A FANTASTIC NIGHT OUT Dinner, Disco and Entertainment £45 per person

10% discount on parties of 10 or more when booked and paid for by 20th November

Why not stay the night and enjoy our spa facilities? Room & breakfast £85 per room

FREDDIE MERCURY Friday 14th December

BLUES BROTHERS Friday 21st December


Saturday 15th December


Saturday 22nd December

George Albert Hotel Wardon Hill, Evershot, Nr. Dorchester, Dorset DT2 9PW Tel: 01935 483430 • | 25

Wild Dorset

STUCK IN A RUT Melanie Fermor, Dorset Wildlife Trust

Image: Stewart Canham


ature’s familiar wind-down heralds autumn’s crisp, golden arrival, however the shortening days also bring about a change for some of our largest land mammals. Melatonin, induced by the lessening light, triggers hormonal changes in five out of the six resident UK deer species, leaving them, for a brief window of opportunity, able to stand each other’s presence and, most importantly, able to reproduce. Listen out on an autumn day in the countryside and you may just catch the crash of weapons and the cries of battle from rutting deer. The stakes are certainly high for male deer who lock antlers at this time of year, for the victors will continue their genetic lineage while the vanquished are effectively expelled from the gene pool. Only the strongest, fittest males will successfully mate with the females, passing on their genes to subsequent generations. The rut carries immediate, significant risk to the individual male deer too. Not only do the battles cause serious injury and death but also the hormonal changes that take place in the rutting season induce a lack of appetite in the males, leading to weight loss and loss of condition. After such a marathon, the surviving male deer can be expected to look a little worse-for-wear by the end of the season! Huge male deer with spreading antlers, snorting 26 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

vapour into the chilly autumn air, is a classic image of the rut, but it’s not just the males who have tricks up their sleeve when it comes to ensuring the successful continuation of the species. Female native roe deer’s bodies can selectively implant previously fertilised embryos so that they only commit to pregnancy when they are of an optimum weight. The embryos will be kept safe until a certain point in the year when, if she has not achieved a weight sufficient to carry the young to full term and survive to feed them, she will not remain pregnant.

FACTS: • The UK’s largest deer species is the red deer. • Deer have different names for females and offspring according to species including stags, bucks, hinds and does. • Muntjack deer are exceptions to the rutting season as they are able to reproduce all year round. • Do not approach rutting deer as they can be very dangerous.

Visit our website to plan your autumn outside adventures!

SHERBORNE DWT Image: Lady Emily Davey


Gillian M. Constable, Dorset Wildlife Trust Sherborne Group Committee Member

ith the approach of winter most of our wildlife is settled in their winter quarters. Some will emerge on a particularly warm sunny day, e.g. some butterflies which over-winter as adults, whereas others will not be seen for several months. One of the interesting features of butterflies is that different species can spend winter in either the egg, larva, pupa or adult stage. Bees are similar, to some extent. At the DWT Sherborne Group’s next meeting we have bee expert Lesley Gasson presenting a talk entitled Bees and Beekeepers. She is a master beekeeper who has been keeping honeybees for over 30 years. The photograph above, taken by her daughter, shows her opening one of her 7 hives. She will be telling us about the lifecycle of a colony and what beekeepers must do to look after their bees. Realising the problems of this year’s weather, which ranged from extreme cold to weeks of dry heat, I was surprised when she told me that, although it had been a mixed year for beekeepers, she did very well with her honey crop. Over recent years people have become more aware of the importance of bees and of the many threats to their existence, which are far more than just climate change. Dave Goulson’s

books cover this topic brilliantly. Our talk on 21st November will be held in the Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Road. Doors open at 7pm to give time for some wildlife chatter and light refreshments, which will be available for a small contribution. The talk starts at 7.30pm and, as always, non-members of DWT are most welcome. I am rather addicted to checking the Portland Observatory website daily to see what the avian sightings were the previous day - there have been some good and some very bad days for migration counts this autumn. A report of the passage of 1200 meadow pipits with 700 grounded amazes me and a sighting of a single ortolan bunting makes me wish I had been there. On 30th September a single turtle dove was seen and the report writer comments, ‘I dipped on this one and still haven’t seen one at Portland this year.’ His memories of flushing flocks of 50 in Top Fields when he was a kid are, he says, getting hazier by the year. The next day, The Times had a report covering rare species extinction and stated that turtle dove numbers have fallen 94% since 1995. | 27


‘Within its elegant cover pages are treasures – words and images to make you wonder and smile, to incite curiosity and conversation, to make you dream. A collection of delights to be savoured.’ Kate Humble

Author and presenter of BBC’s Countryfile and Back to the Land



If you enjoy reading the Bridport and Sherborne Times but live outside our free distribution areas you can now receive your very own copy by post 12 editions delivered to your door for just £30.00 To subscribe, please call 01935 315556 or email

28 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

CO U L D IN H ERI TA N C E TA X S ERIO U S LY DA M AG E YO U R W EA LT H? Inheritance Tax is affecting a rapidly increasing number of people, most of whom would prefer their hard-earned assets to pass to their families. Our expertise can help advise you on the important aspects of lifetime planning in key areas such as gifting, to help reduce or even eliminate your exposure.

PETER HARDING WEALTH MANAGEMENT Principal Partner Practice of St. James’s Place Wealth Management

Tel: 01747 855554

Tel: 01935 315315

Email: Web: 40 High Street, Shaftesbury, Dorset, SP7 8JG | 9 Cheap Street, Sherborne, DT9 3PU The Partner Practice represents only St. James’s Place Wealth Management plc (which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority) for the purpose of advising solely on the Group’s wealth management products and services, more details of which are set out on the Group’s website The title ‘Partner Practice’ is the marketing term used to describe St. James’s Place representatives. Peter HardingWealth Management is a trading name of Peter Harding Practice Ltd. H2SJP30113 09/18


“It’s Uplifting” Tatler Schools Guide 2019

For more information or to arrange a visit please contact the Registrar, Charlotte Carty

01935 810911 or Acreman Street, Sherborne, Dorset DT9 3NY 30 | Sherborne Times | November 2018


Children’s Book Review Wayne Winstone, Winstone’s Books

In preparation for Christmas we review two special books by the celebrated writer Michael Morpurgo, each very different but written with classic readability and style.

Poppy Field by Michael Morpurgo, illustrated by Michael Foreman (Scholastic, 2018) £12.99

The Snowman by Michael Morpurgo, illustrated by Robin Shaw (Puffin, 2018) £12.99

Sherborne Times Reader Offer Price of £11.99 at Winstone’s Books

Sherborne Times Reader Offer Price of £11.99 at Winstone’s Books


new illustrated story celebrating the poppy’s history. Michael Morpurgo and Michael Foreman have teamed up with the Royal British Legion to tell an original story that explains the meaning behind the poppy. In Flanders’ fields, young Martens knows his family’s story, for it is as precious as the faded poem hanging in their home. From a poor girl comforting a grieving soldier, to an unexpected meeting of strangers, to a father’s tragic death many decades after treaties were signed, war has shaped Martens’s family in profound ways - it is their history as much as any nation’s. They remember. They grieve. They honour the past.


nspired by the classic children’s book by Raymond Briggs, Michael Morpurgo and Robin Shaw have created the perfect Christmas story for the whole family. When James wakes to see snow falling one December morning, he is delighted and rushes outside to make a snowman. With coal eyes, an old green hat and scarf, and a tangerine nose, he is perfect and James can hardly bear to go inside and leave him. In the middle of the night, he wakes and creeps out to see his Snowman again – and, to his amazement, the Snowman comes to life. He and James take to the skies on a magical adventure where they meet someone very special. This special tale of true Christmas magic will bring everyone’s favourite childhood festive character to a brand-new audience.

'Independent Bookseller of the Year 2016’ 8 Cheap Street, Sherborne, Dorset DT9 3PX Tel: 01935 816 128

Enjoy the magic of Christmas with Brian Wildsmith's A Christmas Story



tudent Josh is celebrating after being awarded a prestigious Arkwright Scholarship for Engineering. The Arkwright Foundation was set up to nurture and inspire students to be the country’s future leaders in the profession. After a rigorous application process Josh is thrilled to have become a scholar and he will be sponsored by the Ernest Cook Trust as he pursues his ambition to work in the field of renewable energy. His scholarship means he will be able to gain valuable work experience as well as attending lectures and training run by engineering institutes. As part of his application Josh designed and 3D printed a biomimetic model train inspired by a boxfish. The unusually shaped fish defies what is normally seen as being aerodynamic but, by modelling his train on this fish, Josh was able to maximise capacity whilst also ensuring it was streamlined. Leonardo Helicopters in Yeovil kindly assisted in the production of the model on their large 3D printer. Josh was first inspired to pursue a career in engineering after watching the news coverage of the Chilean miners who were buried underground in an accident in 2010. The men who were trapped underground for 69 days were rescued in a complex operation and seeing the problem-solving and teamwork that enabled the rescue is what sparked Josh’s interest. When he’s not thinking of his next engineering design Josh is busy studying for his A levels and working towards his Gold Duke of Edinburgh award. He is also assisting in The Gryphon School’s new electric car project, working with other students to build and ultimately race the vehicle.

KATHARINE DAVIES PHOTOGRAPHY Portrait, lifestyle, PR and editorial commissions 07808 400083

32 | Sherborne Times | November 2018




have always lived just outside Sherborne in a small village and I cannot tell you how many times I have wanted a complete change - to move to the city and see less greenery and more skyscrapers, and to have more excitement. However, much as I want to become a city girl, I know that Dorset and my local town, Sherborne, will always be my home. As a young person living in a small town, sometimes it can feel a little constricting. However, since deciding to take a year out, I have realised that if you look closer into Sherborne there is much more to be found. Finding all these small treasures makes spending more time in my village a little more appealing. When I had the idea to write a column focussing on the young people who have lived in or are currently living in Sherborne, I decided that I need to get them involved. To begin with, I messaged the group chat I have with my friends and asked them what they liked about Sherborne. If I am completely honest it was a mixed response! They all tried their hardest to be optimistic. In fairness, many of them are now at University and if you’re comparing nights out in Sherborne with nights out in Exeter or Cardiff, well I think we all know which is going to win. When we talked about things we genuinely love about Sherborne and the memories we have made here,

everyone managed to come up with a substantial list. There has been many a trip to Pageant Gardens (or Paggy’s as it's most commonly known), long chats in numerous coffee shops, eating way too much gelato in Ecco and making our own pizzas in Sainsbury’s. I’m sure you are reading this now and thinking to yourself, ‘these people need to get out more’. Trust me, we all think the same thing! However, that is why we call Sherborne ‘home’ - because of all the places we go together. There is no doubt we always make it a great time! One of my friends made the point that the familiarity and predictability of Sherborne is what adds to its charm. I am certain we will all be returning to our favourite places when everyone comes home for many years to come. As part of my column each month I will be asking a group of young people some quickfire ‘Favourite Spot’ questions. This month, having featured a group of my friends who are either at University or still here in Sherborne, I thought it fitting to ask them: Favourite Spot

For coffee: Oliver’s, The Bakeout, Café Nero For gossip: Paggy’s For sport: Terraces, Quarr For beauty: Watching the sunset, dog walks from the Terraces For a takeaway: Sainsbury’s pizza, Tamburino Gold | 33


FIT FOR THE FUTURE Rebecca de Pelet, Programme Curator, TEDxSherborne



n 1905, a pageant took place in the ruins of Sherborne Old Castle to commemorate the 1200th anniversary of the town’s founding by St Aldhelm in AD705. The organiser, Louis Napoleon Parker, presented eleven musically-accompanied dramatic episodes which conveyed Sherborne’s defining historical moments. Parker relished the opportunity to make a ‘stir within England’ and 994 townspeople donned a range of locally-made costumes which helped draw attention to local industries such as leather - and silk-making. Via this inspired match of the old and the new, Parker hoped to show the world that Sherborne was ‘still alive’.

34 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

A mere 113 years later, it is now time to seize that same vision, as TEDxSherborne has come to town. I had presumed that everybody knew what TED was – we all know about Ken Robinson arguing that schools kill creativity, don’t we? However, given that my own brother had no clue, it’s probably best to enlighten the uninitiated here. TED, or ‘Technology, Entertainment and Design’, is a non-profit organisation founded in America in 1984. It now has a truly global reach, with talks in a hundred different languages, and its focus is always ideas - not famous names or cause celèbres, but ideas - in the form of short, powerful talks.

TED has since widened its remit, allowing individuals to apply for a licence to hold their own events, known as TEDx (x as in extra). These are organised by passionate individuals who want to discover new ideas and to spark conversations in their own communities. Now it’s our turn, with our very own Parker, Sherborne resident Tony Cooke, at the helm. Tony has over 25 years’ experience as a serial entrepreneur and is full of enthusiasm for showing the world, again, how Sherborne is indeed alive. He has chosen the theme of ‘Fit for the Future’ for the event, aiming to celebrate the town’s unique mix of ancient heritage and the important role it plays in preparing thousands of young people for adult life. TEDxSherborne was launched in September at a meeting kindly hosted by The Gryphon School, and was attended by representatives from Sherborne’s schools, the Chamber of Commerce, the director of the Paddock Project, the editor of the Sherborne Times and a range of suitably curious and enthusiastic individuals from all over town. Schools are already in the process of learning more of

what the event will be about and small groups from each have submitted their ideas for talks, ranging from global inequality to the future of work, the death of the high street and mental health. One young person from each school will have the opportunity to present a talk on this global platform, as well as many others being offered the chance to invest their energy and insight in a huge range of ways. And Tony wants you too. The event will take place on 9th May 2019 and TEDxSherborne is on the hunt for potential speakers and an army of volunteers with skills from event management to film production, from speaker coaching to community outreach and social media. Use the link below to register your interest on the website. You won’t need to wear a tabard or carry a shield this time but you will be part of a fantastic, new venture designed by the town, for the town, which will help us all contribute to Sherborne being fully Fit for the Future. | 35


THE FUTURE OF BOARDING Dan Chiappa-Patching, Head of Boarding, Sherborne Prep


ducation has changed. Boarding has changed. The world has, indeed, changed… but have children really changed? They still want to play, collect conkers and store them in drawers until they go mouldy, plait each other’s hair, play murder in the dark after lights out, run, jump, shout, eat too many sweets, not eat dinner, want to watch too much TV, enjoy dressing up. In essence, children are still children. What they crave are experiences, and what we, as parents and carers, want them to have are opportunities that stand them in good stead for the life ahead of them. This is where school has such an important role to play. As educators we are tasked more and more with providing opportunities for growth. Whether it is afterschool sports, lunchtime debating or Saturday morning activities, we are trying to provide chances for children to try something new and experience new things. Today I want to be an astronaut, tomorrow a doctor, maybe even a teacher! If we remove boarding from this equation, then we remove opportunities. Boarding is education; it’s not just ‘extra prep time’, far from it. Boarding teaches children essential life skills and the ability to cohabit with a group of people with whom they don’t necessarily see eye to eye, but with whom they have to be able to get on. Boarding is great fun, but there’s not a night that goes by without some discussion over the remote control or what board game the group want to play! Learning to tolerate others, to understand others, to share and to respect other people’s possessions are all key elements of boarding. It is being seen more and more as preparation for life outside of education. Life in the workplace. Real life. At Sherborne Prep, we made the decision to take our boarding co-educational. We are a co-educational 36 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

"Boarding is being seen more and more as preparation for life outside of education. Life in the workplace. Real life."

school, we promote co-educational sport, our lessons are co-educational, break time is co-educational. We live in a co-educational environment and in a co-educational society. Many of us have brothers and sisters and are heading off into a world where we will be expected to be able to deal with other people, people with different values and beliefs and people of a different gender. This does not mean that we are suddenly sharing dorms; it does, however, mean that the boys and girls are able to spend more down-time together, as they would in any

family. It allows them to begin to understand each other better and to tolerate each other. Surely, if we look at the opportunities that we are providing in boarding, the most important thing to provide is a safe, secure and enjoyable environment in which to experience these opportunities, an environment from which the children will go on to adult life with a grounded view of the changing world in which we live. | 37





won’t lie. I had a deep desire for many years that I chose not to share with anyone. This was mainly because I couldn’t see any way of turning it from a dream to a reality. It seemed pointless to talk to anyone about it and it lay dormant, like a new seed, buried in the recesses of my mind. However, as we know, seeds are hardy little individuals with a destiny to fulfil. They’re also extremely patient, simply waiting for their moment to grow, develop and bloom. Mine waited for about 15 years, until it chose to emerge during February this year when the snow lay thick on the ground. I met another Dorset-based artist, Martin Thompson, to organise a workshop. We’d never met before and during our conversation we discussed our frustrations regarding the current squeeze on the arts in education. As we shared our thoughts, he mentioned he’d briefly entertained the idea of starting an independent art school. ‘Me too!” I said - my secret was out. ‘Why haven’t you done it?’ ‘I’m not sure I have the full skill set required for such a big project,’ was his reply. This was the reason I hadn’t pursued the idea either, so it was rather unnerving when we tentatively sat down a month later and revisited the idea to find that between us we could plug virtually all those skills gaps. The seed germinated and grew - why not an online art school? If we’re going to do this, let’s take it global. Were we kidding ourselves? Apparently, we weren’t. In January 2019 we launch Secret Art School to the world. It’s been a memorable summer. Not so much for the heat as for the colossal learning curve we’ve had to climb! Long, hot, sultry days researching, planning, scriptwriting, filming, editing, critiquing and fine-tuning. We didn’t have much of a budget to work with but, as we are both perfectionists, this was never going to be a ‘cheap and 38 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

cheerful’ exercise. We had a shared vision. We saw a gap in the market for a new approach to online art courses and we knew it had to contain high quality information and equally impressive production values. Perhaps being creative by nature, together with our naivety about the film-making process, was a blessing in disguise, because we weren’t phased by our lack of experience. With the most basic of equipment we built ourselves a working studio. This included Martin’s mum’s zimmer frame as an overhead rig for the camera and a homemade autocue fashioned from cardboard, sticky tape and an iPad! We taught ourselves how to write scripts, storyboard, read autocue professionally, and present and demonstrate to camera. We critiqued each other’s work, got each other through the lows (‘Is this working?’; ‘Is it good enough?’; ‘Are we mad?’), laughed until we cried at the out-takes and our first valiant, if inept, attempts at presenting; and kept reminding each other that

the hundreds of unpaid hours we were putting in could perhaps lead to something extraordinary. And that was just the production side. Add to that the creation of a website to support online courses, promotion and marketing strategies and all the usual activities associated with setting up a new business. There were some hairy moments too. When the Mac storing hours of digital footage crashed and we had to bite our nails for two days. ‘There’s no guarantee I can get the data back,’ the expert warned. However, on this occasion, he did and we went out and bought two external hard drives to ensure we never had to go through the trauma again! It’s now November and we still have some major deadlines to meet before we launch our first course in January 2019. But crucially the dream is no longer intangible. Secret Art School is real. We see it in front of us on the screen. What’s more it has its own character and a strong identity. We will, of course, have to wait

and see how our customers respond to it. However, what has really surprised me through the process of nurturing this new and ambitious project is how the stars seemed to align to make it happen. What were the chances of meeting the one other person with the skill set to dovetail so neatly with my own? And the same vision? And it isn’t often in life that one finds, or makes the time, to devote to such a big undertaking. It just happened that we both had a gap in the busy schedule of everyday working life to devote to it. So, if you have a dream and it seems impossible right now, remember everything can change in an instant. Opportunities you could never imagine can present themselves. The trick is not to let them pass you by but grab them with both hands and embrace the potential they offer. Let’s face it, I bet Martin’s mum’s zimmer frame never imagined a future career in film production! | 39



Cindy Chant, Sherborne Blue Badge Guide

40 | Sherborne Times | November 2018


ess, still in shock from hearing the news of the death of her beloved boy Wat, tried again to persuade her husband to escape whilst there was a small chance, as Stukley left them at comparative liberty. But Walter, now almost 70, had become indecisive. Weak and dithery, he admitted that after the death of his adored son, ‘his brains had broken’. He was now an old man, and too weak to begin a new life in an unfamiliar country. He made no attempt to escape. On 25th July 1618, Sir Walter Ralegh said goodbye to Plymouth for the last time and, also for the last time, travelled along the route that in earlier years he had so often taken from Plymouth to London. The escorted party soon reached Sherborne, where they made an overnight stop. Stukley and the others stayed in the George Hotel at the top of Cheap Street, while Walter, Bess and Carew stayed with good friends at the Manor House in Poyntington. It has been reported that the next morning, on joining Pinford Lane (then the London road), Walter looked across the fields to the lovely gabled house that he and Bess had built and loved so very much, and to the Old Castle across the river. With tears in his eyes, he gazed for the last time at his home, now the home of the pensioner Digby, whose family remain residents to this day. ‘All this was once mine, and has been unjustly taken from me,’ he sobbed. He had been truly happy when he lived in Sherborne, perhaps the happiest years of his life. He then rode away for the last time into the green and rolling hills of the Yeo valley towards London. On reaching London, and once again in the Tower, he was given two choices - either to be beheaded or to be hung, drawn and quartered. He chose beheading and asked that he might be allowed to make a speech from the scaffold. He was then taken to the gatehouse prison, near to the west end of Westminster Abbey. That night, his wife Bess was allowed to visit him. They talked and wept and, clinging to each other, said their last goodbyes. She left just after midnight and then Ralegh, late into the night, wrote her some poetry: Even such is Time, that takes in trust our youth, our joys, our all we have, and pays us but with earth and dust; Who in the dark and silent grave, when we have wandered all our ways, shuts up the story of our days; But from this earth, this grave, this dust, My God shall raise me up, I trust. He then slept for a few hours, awoke and prepared

himself for what was to happen. He ate a full breakfast, enjoyed a smoke of his pipe and then dressed himself in the way that he always had done: in fine extravagant clothes - a crisp white cuff, a black velvet cloak, a large diamond ring on his finger. He walked to the scaffold, removed his hat, and addressed the crowds who were waiting and watching. ‘I take my leave of you all. I make my peace with God.’ He then asked the axeman if he could see the axe and he tested the blade with his fingers. ‘This is sharp medicine, but it is a physician that will cure all my diseases.’ He refused to be blindfolded. The axeman froze, and Ralegh cried out, ‘Strike man, strike’. Ralegh’s head came off on the second blow and the axeman held it up to show the watching crowd. That night Bess wrote to her brother, ‘The Lords have given me his dead body, although they denied me his life’. The headless body was buried in front of the Communion table in St Margaret’s, Westminster. The head was taken to be cleaned, par-boiled to shrink it (as was the custom in those days) then embalmed and given to Bess. She put it into a red velvet drawstring purse and wore it around her waist for another 20 years until she died, aged 80. It was then given to their son Carew who kept it until his death, when it was buried with him. So ended the life of Sir Walter Ralegh, one of the greatest men in Elizabethan history. He had made his mark: a soldier, sailor, explorer, colonist, businessman, alchemist, poet, historian but, above all, a courtier, who had dazzled Queen Elizabeth and his contemporaries with his wit, style and flamboyance. He stage-managed his own death and impressed everyone with his courage, dignity and eloquence. ‘Ralegh, you lived like a star at which the world gazed and, like a star, you must fade when the heavens are shaken.’ In writing these articles for the Sherborne Times. I have referred to several reference books and many references have been investigated. Any missed reference is unintentional. Anna Beer - Bess: The Life of Lady Ralegh Wife to Sir Walter Ralegh (Constable and Robinson Ltd., 2004) Richard Dale - Who Killed Sir Walter Ralegh? (The History Press, 2011) Robert Lacey - Sir Walter Ralegh (Pheonix Press, 1973) | 41




his month we shall be commemorating the end of the First World War. However, for my father-in-law, Syd Ford, the 11th November 1918 was the day his war began. Syd had joined the Royal Navy the year before at the age of 18 and, after his training at Chatham, had been drafted to HMS Calypso, a modern light cruiser which was part of a squadron of five light cruisers and nine destroyers sailing towards Petrograd (present-day St. Petersburg). As the war on the western front came to an end, a vicious civil war for control of Russia was in progress, between the Bolshevik Red Army on one side and the White Army on the other. Winston Churchill, who thought that Bolshevism should be ‘strangled in its cradle’, persuaded an uncertain government to ‘show the British flag’ and support the Whites. The British squadron arrived in Reval (present-day Tallinn), at Christmas 1918. Syd sent home a photo of himself and some of the crew clothed in heavy fur coats and gloves against the intense cold which had coated the ships in thick ice. You can imagine the Bolshevik leaders’ rage when they found out that not only was there an entire squadron of British ships in the Baltic Sea but also that they had penetrated deep into the Gulf of Finland and were shelling one of the Bolshevik supply routes. 42 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

Trotsky, one of Lenin’s deputies and the Peoples’ Commissar of Military and Naval Affairs, commanded, ‘They must be destroyed at any cost’. F.F. Raskolnikov, a leading Bolshevik ‘enforcer’, was put in charge of the operation to expel the British. He had had some limited naval training but his revolutionary fervour was considered more important than his naval skills. Things didn’t go well from the start: only half the ships he hoped to use were seaworthy and one that did set out had to turn back because it hadn’t taken on enough fuel. So Raskolnikov was left with two: the destroyer Spartak, and one other. As they neared Reval the British appeared, steaming towards them at great speed. The Russians turned and fled. The race was now on with the faster British warships gaining rapidly on the Russians. As the British closed on the Russians, a firefight broke out. Neither side landed a blow on their opponents, however one blow did land when the Russians on the Spartak hit their own wheelhouse: one of their fore-gunners, firing wildly, had swung round too far to aft. The helmsman was concussed and charts flew everywhere. Fiasco turned to farce when, unable to navigate properly, the Spartak ran aground on an underground reef. Raskolnikov ordered his crew to scuttle the ship but they were unable to open the

The Russian destroyer 'Arvtoil'

chocks to sink it. It had not been a good day for the fledgling Bolshevik Navy, especially as the British had also captured another destroyer, the Arvtoil, which had arrived late on the scene. The British had somehow got wind that a leading Bolshevik was on the Spartak and they found Raskolnikov hiding under some sacks of potatoes. He claimed to be an Estonian but was quickly exposed and put under special guard on the Calypso. The British had a major prize and they were not going to let him escape. Raskolnikov appeared to have a sneaking admiration for the crew of Syd’s ship. He later wrote, ‘I was struck by their educated-looking faces, their well-cared-for complexions and bright red cheeks’. He even liked the food: when given a tin of rabbit meat he said, ‘to my surprise it tasted like chicken’. The British were keen to swap Raskolnikov for some British personnel held by the Bolsheviks. At the Admiralty in London he was instructed to write a message which would be telegraphed to Moscow explaining this proposal, but was warned, significantly, ‘whatever fate befalls them, that fate will be yours also’. While the swap was being arranged, Raskolnikov was put in Brixton prison. When the British knew the deal was firmly in place, he was released to live in a hotel in

Gower Street. In the twelve days before the exchange he ‘did the sights’, bought clothes in Oxford Street, visited London Zoo and went to see Tosca at Covent Garden! The swap finally took place in May 1919. Syd was demobilised in the spring of 1919 after just four months active service, but what a tale he had to tell about the rigours of the Baltic winter, a brush with the Bolshevik Navy and the capture of a leading Bolshevik. Best of all, perhaps, was the cash bounty (worth almost £1,000 in today’s money) he received for his part in the capture of the two destroyers! Raskolnikov’s reputation somehow survived the ignominy of his capture, in large part due to the influence of his stunningly beautiful wife, Larissa Reisner, one of the stars of New Russia. Raskolnikov went on to hold various diplomatic posts around Europe. At the height of Stalin’s purges, he was ordered back to Russia. He decided not to go and went to live in France where, within a few weeks, he was poisoned. He was just 47. HMS Calypso survived until well into the Second World War when she was torpedoed. Before that, in 1922, she was sent to rescue the Greek royal family. Included in those rescued was an 18-month-old boy named Philipposis who was carried on board in a cot made from an orange box. That little boy was to become our Duke of Edinburgh. | 43


TRENCH ART Elisabeth Bletsoe, Curator


n this month of Remembrance I have chosen to focus on a piece of First World War Trench Art; made from embroidery yarns on black corded silk and in a frame 26cm x 29.5cm, it depicts the badge of the Royal Engineers. Worn since the South African wars of 1899-1902, the badge is composed of the leather Garter and Motto, in the centre of which is the monarch’s initials, the whole surmounted by a crown. Fortunately for us the words, ‘Vincent/Tent 17’ are pencilled on the back and we have been able to piece together the life of the soldier who created it. The poignant human stories behind many of our wartime artefacts enrich our understanding of the past and hence our empathy with it, enabling the museum to play a pivotal role in the community’s remembering of its war dead. Sydney Vincent was born in Westbury, Sherborne in 1886, the son of George, a carpenter, and his wife Jane. The 1901 census shows him to have been working as an errand boy at the age of 14, however by 1911 he was resident in Horsecastles and recorded as a plumber. In 1908 he had married Alice Maud Ware and, after their two children were born, they later settled at 40 Wingfield Road. Although Sydney enlisted in December 1915, he was not mobilised until October the following year. Contemporary newspaper reports show that he was granted a conditional exemption as a result of an appeal by his employers, Messrs Pond and Son, since he was the only plumber remaining at their Sherborne branch. This was revoked in the autumn of 1916 when Sydney, being fit and able-bodied, as well as proficient in his trade, was posted to the Royal Engineers Training Centre at Deganwy, North Wales, where he became a sapper. 44 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

He would later serve with the 61st Field Company near Zillebeke in Belgium where, according to the official War Diary, they were engaged in repairing trench board-tracks, bridge-building and constructing Nissen huts, cookhouses and latrines between infantry and artillery attacks. It is possible that Sydney created his art work here during rest periods, embroidery being a frequent form of selfexpression among the soldiers. He was demobilised in February 1919 due to contracting pulmonary tuberculosis, the most common reason for discharge at the time. This infectious respiratory disease often remained undetected at recruitment, was greatly exacerbated by overcrowding, poor diet and unhygienic conditions and was a major difficulty faced by governments in terms of repatriation and rehabilitation since it required isolation and specialist treatment. It seems that, after the war, Sydney became a chauffeur to Colonel Grant of Sherborne House but died in 1923 at the early age of 37. He had ‘suffered greatly’ from tuberculosis ever since he left the Army, according to the Western Gazette, who also mentioned his grieving widow and children as well as the floral tributes he received. He is as much a victim of war as any recorded on the Memorial, and deserves our gratitude, remembrance and respect. Sherborne Museum is hosting a Remembrance event, ‘Society, Service and Sacrifice: Sherborne Remembers the First World War’, on 6th November at 7pm at the Digby Memorial Hall. See our website for details.

31 Cheap Street Sherborne 01935 815 657

traditional | contemporary | heritage sensitive | simple | sustainable


YES, OK, BUT IS THERE A BETTER WAY? Andy Foster, Raise Architects


ow do you encourage your architect or designer to produce the best possible solution for you? It doesn’t matter if your project is large or small, any building project represents a significant investment and it is essential that the eventual design solution meets or, ideally, exceeds your expectations. There will always be a need to balance functional and aesthetic considerations. Sometimes this happens with ease, and sometimes it can be more of a struggle. It depends, in part, on the skill and tenacity of the architect. Are they working on the right strategy? Have they exhausted other possibilities? It’s partly down to circumstance. Is there a good fit between the project brief and the site or existing building? And, yes, it’s partly down to your approach too. Is there some flexibility in your thinking? Is your brief both challenging and achievable? I genuinely believe that all designers want to produce their best work for their clients; I think it’s in their DNA. If it wasn’t already innate, an architect learns this characteristic while at architecture school through a process known as the ‘crit’. A crit (short for critique) is a review of a student’s design work; it happens periodically throughout the development of a project and it’s a pretty public affair. In the early days of a project, it might be quite small and informal with a single tutor and a few students. At the end of the project, however, the final crit might comprise several external critics, other tutors and a large audience of students. When I first experienced the process, it was something of a shock. You feel very exposed standing up to present in front of your peers and tutors. Of course, it’s wonderful when you’re on the receiving end of unconditional compliments but, in my case, such occasions were infrequent. The more typical response involved comments that damned with faint praise: 46 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

‘I appreciate your intentions but I’m not sure that what you’ve come up with is fully resolved.’ ‘Nice idea but I don’t think it works.’ ‘ Yes OK, I get where you’re coming from, but I can’t help thinking that there must be a better way.’ When bombarded with these seemingly negative comments, it’s easy to fall into the trap of becoming defensive. However, I learned to see the crit more as a testing ground of ideas, as an opportunity to obtain other people’s reactions to things, and I used the feedback to genuinely inform the next iteration. I learnt to be more relaxed about whether that meant starting again or keeping going. You may have noticed that these put-downs are all

just slightly more sophisticated versions of that standard school report criticism, ‘could try harder’. I think that the educational analogy is probably appropriate since every design project is, to some extent, a learning experience architect and client jointly figuring out what they’ve got, what’s possible, what works and what doesn’t. Your role as the client on a design project is an interesting one and is worthy of some consideration. Of course, you are the recipient of a professional service but, unlike other forms of service, you are also an integral part of the process. You have a role to play as a critic and, as such, you have an opportunity to push for something better. I would encourage you to be clear and honest about what you think, even if this might sound negative. You are under no obligation to justify your thoughts; such is the luxury of the critic’s voice. If some things are

not quite right, don’t be afraid to say so. Even when everything is looking good, keep pushing for more. Ask if there is a better way. Your designer will always want to respond to the challenge. ‘Remember: when people tell you something’s wrong or doesn’t work for them, they are almost always right. When they tell you exactly what they think is wrong and how to fix it, they are almost always wrong.’ (Neil Gaiman) Footnote A message to anyone currently employing or about to employ an architect or designer: the advice I have given is design dynamite. Please use it sparingly and with great care. A message to other architects or designers: I apologise. | 47


An Austin J40 pedal car, sold by Charterhouse for £2,750 in their last collector’s auction


Richard Bromell ASFAV, Charterhouse Auctioneers


large part of our business deals with nostalgia - a sentimentality for the past. We all feel nostalgic at some point, maybe about hot and lazy summer holidays when we were at school. Here at Charterhouse, however, when people feel nostalgic they want to bid, bid, bid and buy the item or items which are eliciting those nostalgic feelings. Popular collector’s items today range from Dinky or Corgi die-cast model cars through to Barbie or Sindy dolls. With these toys, it is all about condition, condition, condition. Toys which were played with carefully and religiously put back in their boxes afterwards will always have a big premium over a similar lot which was left lying around in the sandpit for six months! We often sell lots to buyers which they owned as a child or young person. These lots might have been relegated to an attic where they became damp or were eaten by rodents during a period of being unloved and neglected. Or they might simply have been thrown away or handed down to siblings when the young owner grew up and found new interests to pursue. However, it is not always the item which someone had when they were younger which they will want to own again; it is just as likely to be the item they were not allowed or could not afford which they want to own later on in life. Recently we were asked to sell a child’s pedal car in one of our collector’s auctions. This little Austin 48 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

J40 pedal car, made in about 1950, had only had two owners during its life. The second owner spent a long time lovingly restoring the car to its former glory after it was left languishing in his shed, then decided that it was time for a new owner to take control of the steering wheel as he had not been able to fit in it for the past 60 years! Today these Austin J40 pedal cars are hotly contested at auction. Many buyers will be bidding on them as they bring back happy memories and many are bought so that the next generation (or two) can create happy memories in one. In addition, there is a series of hugely popular pedal car races specifically for the Austin J40 which have been introduced at events including the Goodwood Revival motoring festival. This is a festival which, rather like our auctions, is all about nostalgia. Nearly everyone dresses up in vintage clothes whether they arrive in a classic or modern car or motorcycle. Having watched one of these Austin J40 pedal car races, it is clear to see the children (well most) take it seriously. They are also dressed up in vintage style race suits with the occasional flat cap thrown in. However you look at it, nostalgia is here to stay with many of our bidders looking to re-live those nostalgic moments or to create new ones.

at Christmas Friday 30th November & Saturday 1st December

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CHARTERHOUSE Auctioneers & Valuers We are now accepting entries for our forthcoming auctions: Classic & Vintage Motorcars Sunday 4th November Silver, Jewellery & Watches Thursday 15th November Asian Art with Port, Wine & Whisky Friday 16th November Coins, Medals, Model Cars, Trains & Collector’s Items Friday 14th December Classic & Vintage Motorbikes Sunday 3rd February

December Collector’s Items

Contact Richard Bromell for advice and to arrange a home visit The Long Street Salerooms Sherborne DT9 3BS 01935 812277 | 49



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50 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

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Kitty Oakshott, Upstairs Downstairs Interiors

elvet is a distinctive, soft-pile fabric that has been woven since at least the Middle Ages. The term ‘velvet’ actually refers to the weave and not the content of the material - velvet can in fact be made from any fibre. Traditionally it was always made from silk, however in modern times cotton and synthetics are most commonly used in its manufacture, making it much more affordable. Crushed velvet is produced by twisting the fabric whilst it is wet. Different designs in the fabric can be created by weaving in multiple threads of different colours. Velvet is then usually brushed whilst it is still moist so that it sets with a grain - this is what produces its characteristic feel. Soft and opulent, velvet introduces a touch of elegance and glamour to an interior. There is such a wide range of velvets on the market that there is something to suit any home or space. Velvets don’t have to be plain; printed velvets introduce a huge range of designs that would work on everything from 54 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

curtains to a statement chair. These designs often have matching wallpapers to complete an interior scheme. Cut velvets bring a variation of textures and are great for upholstery. For a retro look, check out the Underground collection from Kirkby Design, created from a collaboration with Transport for London using designs inspired by the seats on the London Underground! Don’t be put off a velvet sofa or armchair if you have a busy household with pets and children. Velvet is exceptionally hard-wearing, and there are many stainresistant and washable velvets on the market. For the ultimate in luxury, choose a mohair velvet; made from the hair of the Angora goat, it is beautifully soft, very durable and not itchy like wool. Sink into some sumptuous velvet and plan your next project!

The Joinery Works, Alweston Sherborne, Dorset DT9 5HS Tel: 01963 23219 Fax: 01963 23053 Email:



LOVE YOUR BATHROOM Jo Matthews, Fired Earth Bathroom Designer

56 | Sherborne Times | November 2018


or many years now the design-considered space of our homes has been the kitchen, a room that has evolved from a small, dark and uninspiring functional space to become the centre of our lives, the bright family hub from which we cook, eat, rest and play. Is it not now time to extend that courtesy to our bathrooms? After all, it’s the one room in the house that can invigorate us in the morning and enthuse us for the day then, at the end of it, relax and comfort us ready for our beds. So often, however, we find that the bathroom is overlooked and just accepted as it is, resulting in a lifeless, functional, utilitarian but usually unpractical and aged space that doesn’t reflect you or your home’s personality. Why is this? Well... the bathroom is generally the most complicated room in your home to get right. The space is either too small or too big, awkward or plain and boxy, with ceilings that are angled, and windows that are too low or really high and which get in the way. Then there are all the technical considerations - water supply, waste pipes, heating, lighting and their restrictions and regulations. As users we also require a lot from this single space. We need it to function in so many ways: for a quick and easy shower in the morning; to clean and entertain fidgety and messy children; and to offer a quiet, spa-like soak in the evening. We also require it to be practical and functional and easy to maintain. Can we really ask our bathrooms to also inspire us, make us smile and be beautiful? Why not? A bathroom requires many items to make it function: basin, toilet, bath, shower, taps and tiling as well as paint, a window-dressing and accessories. This means that you

have options as to where you spend that little extra on something special and which items suggest a style or character. For example, a stunning Art Deco basin and washstand that would look great teamed with plain and simple, low-cost, square white wall tiles which act as a background. Finish this with black or emerald green linear pencil tiles and matching painted skirting for a designed look. This is a good option for a bathroom that has high ceilings as the pencil tiles act as a focal point, break up the wall height and help to make the space feel less lofty. For a small room with lower ceilings, a good option is to treat the floor as your focal area so be brave and opt for a patterned tile. In a small room it is generally better to choose simple white, space-saving, wall-hung sanitary ware, letting you see as much of the floor as possible, and keep the walls simple, light and in a continuous flow. Your eye will be drawn downwards to the floor and not up where space feels restricted. When it comes to the technical aspects of the bathroom, it is best to seek advice from the experts. An installer or plumber should be able to assess the options you have for changing water pipe positions and what your boiler and water pressure can cope with. Or call into your local bathroom company and speak to their designer; many companies offer a design service and some may even visit your home. They will also be able to help you with the possibilities of the space, considering technical properties as well as creating a cohesive design full of exciting products to suit you and the room. So love your bathroom… now is the time. | 57

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THE DARK SIDE Suzy Newton, Partners in Design

60 | Sherborne Times | November 2018


n alternative trend to the neutral colour palette has been gathering momentum: embracing the darker, bolder hues and creating a warm interesting interior that makes you feel snuggled and cocooned. Successfully navigating the world of bright, vibrant and striking interior colours requires confidence. You have to be willing to take the plunge into something exciting, different and eye-catching. The nine new colours just introduced by Farrow and Ball include the deep rich ‘Preference Red’, the exuberant Rajasthani-inspired ‘Rangwali’, the pretty ‘Sulking Room Pink’ and the dramatic ‘Paean Black’. Remember, there’s no beige in bold so, if you want to make a statement, colour is the only way to go. The key to making dark colours work is by using luxe textures. Wool and velvet are good choices for upholstery and anything with a touch of sheen such as metallic fabrics or a statement wallpaper will lift the look, creating contrast and a sense of balance. Reflective surfaces work incredibly well – think antiqued-glass tile-panelled alcoves for example. Dark walls are also a good opportunity to use striking jewel colours in upholstery such as teal greens and rich reds. A useful tip for dark decorating is to paint the woodwork the same colour as the walls, along with the skirting. The less you break up a space the calmer and bigger it will look. By painting the woodwork the same colour as the cabinets and walls, it recedes into the background to create a cohesive, sophisticated feel. This works especially well if you have a lot of cabinets or shelves, as any contrasting woodwork could be visually jarring. We all know nothing transforms a room faster than a few tins of paint and dark colours will deliver the most drama. There is an assumption that rooms decorated in dark colours can feel small and oppressive but when dark palettes are executed properly they are cosy, dramatic and full of life. Rooms that are public, see a lot of foot traffic, or are designated for socialising, such as sitting rooms or children’s playrooms, can handle more colour on the walls. Try using soothing palettes such as luxurious cream or soft grey hues for the rooms where a restful ambience is important - the master bedroom or bathroom, for example. For the less bold, focus on your front door. The front door is a relatively small part of your house so, if you paint it and end up hating it, changing it back won’t be a big deal. Plus, colourful doors have been around for ages so experimenting with yours can be a restrained first step into bold shades. Go on; make a statement with colour! | 61


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62 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

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Mike Burks, Managing Director of The Gardens Group

t is well known that many medicines have originated from plants, such as aspirin from willows, but we have probably forgotten more than we currently use. A few years ago, anyone who had a yew hedge was encouraged to collect and send away the trimmings for research into cancer-treating drugs. Yew contains a chemical called Paclitaxel and this was the basis for modern cancer medicines. I met someone recently who had worked on this project at the University of Southampton and he told me that the manufactured drug proved to be less efficacious than the naturally-sourced version. With such powers it makes sense how revered the yew tree is and perhaps why it was grown in churchyards. There are various explanations for this including that all parts of the plant are poisonous other than the fleshy outside of the fruit and hence being in the churchyard would keep it away from livestock. However, graveyards were quite often tidied by sheep grazing among the headstones so that may not be the real reason. Another explanation was that while Christianity was in its infancy, early worshippers hedged their bets and kept the Pagan symbol that is yew alongside the modern religion just in case. Thirdly it is often claimed that the church was the easiest place in the village to defend from attack and that the yew tree was useful for making bows and arrows. I would suggest that if there was sufficient time to make several bows and arrows while waiting for the attack, then the marauders would have been pretty ineffective anyway! My conclusion is that the yew was kept there because it was so useful medicinally. However, ordinary plants can be useful too, including the potato which can be used to treat some skin conditions and burns in the same way as the succulent aloe vera is used. I can’t really see potatobased shampoo, toothpaste or moisturising cream catching on but one never knows. Potatoes were also used by Edwardian and Victorian ladies who apparently sowed pockets into their dresses at the lower back into which potatoes were placed to assist with back complaints. I read somewhere that potato contains galanthamine, a drug that is used in modern medicines for rheumatism. The common spud can also help with cramp at night – when my mother first lived in Devon she was told by a farming neighbour that to cure her cramp she ought to put a “teddy in yer bed.” A teddy wasn’t a cuddly bear but a potato and the treatment worked! (I have also heard it suggested that cork from a wine bottle has a similar effect but a fresh one is required every night! The problem there is clearly not just cramp!) Potatoes can also help cure snoring by placing one inside a pocket sowed on the back of the pyjama top; this stops the snorer from sleeping on their back and so the snoring ceases. Another plant especially useful at this time of the year because it is berrying so freely is the gaultheria. When crushed, its red berries give off the aroma of muscle rub and indeed the common name is wintergreen. I recently discovered that native American tribes used it for treating aches and pains and so my suggestion is to plant it in pots around the garden. Then, if you suffer with a bad back, treatment is easily available and you can carry on weeding without having to head back to the house. Conkers are also readily available now and they have medicinal and other uses. Some claim they are good for keeping spiders out of the house whilst others use them as an alternative cure for snoring. There is some discussion on their usefulness for piles but fortunately there is no space to discuss that further!

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DIARY OF A FIRST-TIME FLOWER FARMER Paul Stickland, Black Shed Flowers


awoke with a start. My foot was sticking out from under the duvet and it was cold, very cold. It could only mean one thing… As flower farmers, we’re used to waking at dawn and our first thoughts are always for the weather. All summer long we’ve been rising as early as we can to get our precious flowers harvested and safely into the cool of the big barn at Blackmarsh Farm or to water them before the heat of the day. But, as autumn nears, a deadline begins to loom and it’s one that flower farmers across the UK fear. The first frost. It was 25th September and that chilly extremity could not be ignored. I leapt out of bed and, looking from our bathroom window across our tiny courtyard, there was the unmistakable glisten of frost on its slate roof. I dashed downstairs, across the yard, up a ladder and touched the roof; this wasn’t a light frost, this was ice. Minutes later I’d jumped in the van and was heading with some trepidation to the farm. The sun was rising over Crackmore and delicious orange mist was hanging in the Castle valley, all very beautiful. The sight that greeted me as I opened the farm gates was simply enchanting, no less stunning than that I’d said goodnight to a few hours earlier. Except this was very different. The flowers stood there in the stunning early light in all their gorgeous, intense colours, magnified by the glowing sunlight as it crept over the hill, but this morning they were sparkling with a thick layer of frost. Flowers and leaves crystallised with ice. Quite solid and quite perfect. It was utterly magical and intensely sad at the same time; the flowers were, for just a few moments, caught between life and death, their beauty magnified by the ice crystals which, as the sun rose, would bring about their untimely demise.

68 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

I rushed around the plot, frozen fingers clumsily clutching my phone as I photographed and recorded this ethereal moment. Entranced by their beauty and the fleeting light, I lingered as long as I could before returning home to do the school run. It was with a heavy heart that I drove back into town. This was the end of the dahlias and it was much too early. Six weeks too early. Back home I relayed the news to Helen and, within moments, the internet was full of similar stories from fellow flower farmers across the country. As members of Flowers From The Farm, we have access to a closed Facebook group where we share tips, tricks, highs and lows. This morning it was full of similar stories: frost, too early, what about all the weddings booked, had anyone’s dahlias survived? The advice was to dead head hard and quickly too. We have around 400 dahlia plants: the night before there had been several thousand flowers in all their glory but by the end of the day they were all on our compost heap. It was heartbreaking but there wasn’t much we could do about it. I made a few calls to florists and customers to cancel or alter orders. Luckily our customers understand that our flowers grow outside and that they do so at the whim of the weather. The weather improved over the next few days and the sunshine and warm nights gave us the season extension that we needed. Amazingly the dahlias all picked up and we were able to get back to picking several hundred stems a week within a dozen days, however it was a shock that we could have done without! | 69





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LIBERTY FIELDS Words Jo Denbury Photography Katharine Davies


t will be November when you read this but when I visit Vicky Morland and Bob Imlach of Liberty Fields it’s a bright September day and we are in the midst of an Indian summer. It’s only mid-morning and, standing by the gate at the highest point of Liberty’s orchards, the sun is already beating down. Above our heads a buzzard climbs steadily on the rising thermals, the air is clear and the view stretches for miles. At the furthest point I can see Bulbarrow Hill rise out of the shimmering earth. It’s one of those mornings when Dorset is at its best. Vicky and Bob are one half of Liberty Fields, a small business that produces niche, apple-based tipples. They share the venture with neighbouring organic dairy farmer Pete Lemmey and his wife, Ali, who is both a part-time speech and language therapist and their resident horticulturist. Altogether the orchard covers 10 acres with 1,700 apple trees. >

72 | Sherborne Times | November 2018 | 73

74 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

The idea for Liberty Fields came about in the pub one evening. Pete had been looking into diversification and Bob, as an ex-chef, had been considering producing an apple-based balsamic vinegar. Vicky, originally from Somerset, had moved to Dorset after working in publishing in London and Ali was keen to extend her knowledge of growing trees. The four of them bonded over a common goal to preserve indigenous Dorset (and south Somerset) cider apple trees. Dorset has a rich history of apple-growing and ciderfarming. Records show that in the thirteenth-century the monks of Shaftesbury Abbey drank only cider and, prior to World War I, Dorset had over 10,000 acres of cider apple orchards. The orchards were kept by farmers largely to produce cider for the agricultural workers but, over time, they have dwindled in number and many of the local varieties of cider apple are in danger of extinction. ‘We have begun a ‘mother orchard’ of 30 different varieties to try and preserve as many as we can,’ says Bob. ‘To our knowledge, there are now three of these orchards in Dorset, the other two being with Rupert Best in Melplash and Scott Hayward in East Compton.’ Talking to Bob and Vicky it soon becomes very clear that their orchard is as much a labour of love as it is a business. They planted their first orchard in 2010 and have gone on to do much of the work manually. ‘We’re building gradually,’ says Vicky ‘and we plant the apple

trees by hand because it’s very much about teamwork. People enjoy helping and it creates a community spirit. However, none of this could have been done without a grant from Chalk and Cheese,’ she adds. Chalk and Cheese is the funding initiative for sustainable growth in Dorset’s heartland that assisted them in finding an EU grant for the orchard. Vicky ponders the impact of Brexit and whether similar funding opportunities will be available for future growers. For the time being though, their focus is on this year’s pick. The apples are in and being washed and soaked in the huge outdoor vats that sit outside their Dutch barn. ‘We pick them ourselves,’ says Vicky ‘but also we have help from local students from Cambian Lufton College in Yeovil who visit the orchards weekly for volunteering opportunities.’ Working with a relatively small-scale orchard produces a specialised and essentially pure juice. ‘We don’t use sulphates or citric acid,’ says Bob, as he shows me the long row of aged wooden barrels that line the barn. Each one houses a stage in the ancient process of producing apple balsamic vinegar. The barrels are left open with just a linen stopper to allow a slow evaporation – the ‘angels’ share’ that is about 4% – and need careful nurturing as it takes at least eight years to mature. Bob’s balsamic is the only one in the UK to be produced using this method, one that began with the Romans. > | 75

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78 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

‘I spent several years in Italy researching the methods for balsamic,’ says Bob. ‘Every place you visit has a different, secret recipe, however these are for the specialist balsamics, not for the kind you buy in a supermarket.’ Bob is very much the alchemist of the group and it’s clear that his love of history and method is very much part of the process. ‘We use a similar process when making our syrup and dessert cider,’ he explains. ‘It’s the Italian way and I’m most interested in the taste and flavour.’ We are, in fact, standing very close to the site of a Roman road that once ran from Dorchester north towards the Fosse Way and Bath. There’s also said to be the remains of a Roman villa nearby. ‘The Romans introduced apples to the UK as an alternative to the grape,’ muses Bob, so I guess it’s serendipitous that Liberty Fields has taken it upon themselves to pick up where they Romans left off. If you’re curious as to why they called themselves Liberty Fields, there’s yet more history to be found. Around 1770 a certain Thomas Hollis (and there are a few) owned the land around Halstock and Corscombe where the farm stands today. He had a close connection with America as an advisor to Benjamin Franklin and was one of the architects of American Independence. He himself was a libertarian, hence the name Liberty Farm which

once had an orchard where Liberty Fields is based today. Incidentally the nearby fields are also named after people famously admired: two orchards are called Cicero and Pythagoras, next door is Brutus and, along the road, Plato. I get the feeling that liberty, freedom and the will to create something anew is all part of the ethos at Liberty Fields. In their renovated Dutch barn they’re experimenting with how to give the apples a new lease of life. The balsamic launched in 2012 and they now also produce a wonderfully lively vodka, a dessert cider that to my mind would be perfect in a kir royale, and their latest addition, apple syrup – think of it as Dorset’s take on maple syrup – which might be fun in a Christmas cake or on your breakfast pancakes with berries. These tipples will be available for you to taste at your liberty – excuse the pun – later this month at Vineyards Wine and Spirits Festival. Just remember that with every sip you’re supporting the return of those forgotten, precious varieties of Dorset’s delicious cider apples. The Merry Drinks of Winter, Vineyards Wine and Spirits Festival, Friday 30th November, 6pm-9pm, Digby Hall, Sherborne. Tickets £15 from Vineyards. | 79

@elizabethwatsonillustrations 80 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

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Food and Drink



Image: Katharine Davies 82 | Sherborne Times | November 2018


y mum-in-law taught me how to make this cake. I like to make it in a loaf tin as it cuts nicely into slices for packed lunches but it also makes an excellent round cake for afternoon teas or a celebration cake. Over the years I have developed it into the fruit cake it is today, although a cake can always be improved on. I often make tea bread and I add cider to recipes and so decided to include tea and cider in my fruit cake. In this recipe I’m using Somerset Miles tea and Somerset Sheppy’s cider because I always like to support local producers. Wherever you live you can look out for your local producers. Serves 8 Preparation: 30 minutes. Cooking time: 80-90 minutes. What you will need

• 2 x 1lb loaf tins or a 2lb loaf tin or a 15-18cm round cake tin. Line and grease the tin (I buy greaseproof cake liners which save a lot of time). • A large microwaveable bowl if you are using the microwave method, or a large pan if you are going to boil the ingredients. Ingredients

300g mixed dried fruit (I use equal quantities of sultanas, raisins and currants) 100g light soft brown sugar or 50g each of light and dark soft brown sugar 100g unsalted butter/Stork tub margarine 70ml of tea (make a pot of tea with 4 teabags and allow to brew for 5 minutes) 70ml dry cider (if you don’t wish to use alcohol then replace this with 80ml water) 2 tablespoons of Calvados, or whisky or brandy (optional) 2 medium eggs lightly beaten Zest of half an orange 1 rounded teaspoon of mixed spice 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 200g self-raising flour, sifted 50g glacé cherries chopped into quarters 2 tablespoons of apricot jam warmed to glaze the cake


1 Set the oven for 160C, fan assisted 155C, 300F, gas mark 3. 2 Make a pot of tea with 4 tea bags and leave it to brew (in Yorkshire we say “mash”). Discard the teabags (compost them). 3 Place the fruit, sugar, margarine/butter, tea and cider in a microwaveable bowl and set the microwave to medium. Microwave for 5 minutes and then stir well to combine all the ingredients. Repeat this twice more until the mixture is bubbling. Alternatively, bring these ingredients to the boil in a large pan and simmer for 15 minutes. 4 Remove from the heat and stir in the 2 tablespoons of alcohol. Allow the fruit mixture to cool. 5 When the fruit mixture is cool add the beaten egg, zest, spices and vanilla extract, combine well. 6 Fold in the flour and lastly fold in the chopped cherries. 7 Turn the mixture into the baking tin of your choice. 8 Bake for 1-1/2 hours. Check after 1 hour, by placing a skewer into the middle of the cake. If it comes out clean then the cake is baked. The cake should be golden and firm to touch. 9 Brush the top of the cake with the warmed apricot jam. 10 Allow the cake to cool in the tin for 10 minutes and then place on a wire rack to cool completely. 11 When cool, store in an airtight container. This cake is best left for 2-3 days to mature before eating, or you can freeze it for up to one month. Val’s new recipe book will be available from and Instagram @valcake.walks at the end of November. | 83

Food & Drink


THE LIFE OF A RARE BREED PIG FARMER James Hull, The Rusty Pig Company


fter a month of knowing exactly what to write, the time has arrived; the deadline is 2 days away and I must get the words down and in some sort of order. Our farm is called Lavender Keepers. It’s a new farm and, because of its small size, I absolutely had to retail and wholesale our products, engage with the public and think outside the farming box. It all started soon after the horse meat scandal; the scandal that enveloped our country with tales of meat not being the meat we thought it was, the scandal in which we learnt that much of our meat is shipped round the continent, bought and sold as a commodity, before eventually ending up as something unrecognisable on our plates. For me, it wasn’t so much the fact that there was horse meat in lasagne but rather the fact that we weren’t told there was - and therefore denied the choice of whether to eat it or not. From this, a meat-producing business was started. Our ethos was to produce the best quality pork we could, only ever selling pork reared completely by us. We use a native breed with superior taste, keeping the pigs outside all their lives, and making the business pay and support us… it is not a hobby. I chose Tamworth pigs as our breed because they have an incredible flavour; we are extremely proud of our bacon and sausages. Tamworths are highly intelligent, quite highly strung and can be extremely good at escaping. I would describe them as a lively breed! I started with two Tamworth piglets, or weaners as they are generally called, in a tiny paddock and from those two I have bred the whole herd, which now stands at 130. We have more new breeding stock coming into the herd and our numbers are going to swell over the winter months. Our piglets are born all year round in pig arks in paddocks fenced with electric fencing and are fed twice a day. A Tamworth sow or gilt (young first-time mother) will produce two litters a year, with a litter size between 4 and 12 piglets; we regularly have litters of 8-10

84 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

piglets. New life is always amazing and although we are farrowing every few weeks I never get tired of seeing newly born piglets suckling in a row on their mother’s milk. A quick count and then a recount, how many do we have? It’s one of the very best bits of pig farming, indeed farming in general. On our farm the weaners stay suckling their mothers for roughly eight weeks, before being weaned. By then they are more than independent and the mother is glad to see the back of these demanding, sharp toothed, little youngsters. They grow at a fast rate, being fed ad lib cereal-based, specially formulated pig nuts until they are about 16 weeks old. By then they are eating an incredible amount, however there comes a point at which they will keep eating but not converting their food in to meat, so at this age they go onto twice daily feeding. Tamworths, like all older, native pig breeds, put on more fat than pink pigs but for me that is where the flavour is. When slow roasted, the fat renders down to leave a tender, moist piece of meat which tastes amazing. I can’t believe how easily I slipped from feeding pigs to cooking them but that is farming and if we eat meat we have to accept that part of the process. It’s dark now as I write this, the autumn evenings are drawing in fast. We have been spoiled here this summer with bone-dry paddocks, no mud for months, leggings packed away and goodness knows where my wellies are, but it’s coming, I know it is. Already my trusty winter friend, my head torch, is my constant companion in the early morning feed, before the sun climbs up to light the sky. The rain will come and so will the mud, but so will toad-in-the-hole and Sunday roasts - pork of course; we don’t eat anything else here! So I have made the deadline with hours to spare. There is so much more to tell and I look forward to writing again next month, by which time we should have had many more piglets born.

Image: Chloe Ainscough | 85

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86 | Sherborne Times | November 2018



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Food and Drink



arly reports indicate that the 2018 vintage will be a very good one for English wines. The summer has been one of the warmest on record, allowing the grapes to ripen fully and acquire extra flavour and expression. English Wine Producers, the governing body of the growing English wine industry, anticipates a record harvest in terms of size. More important, perhaps, is that the fruit is good. For some time now, English growers have been honing their skills and the proof is in the increasing number of international wine competition prizes they are bringing home. One of the most impressive was the top award made to Furleigh Estate, near Bridport, for its 2010 Furleigh Estate RosÊ Brut in the Champagne and Sparkling Wine World Championships. Winemaker Ian Edwards was up against wines from the world’s leading sparkling wine-producing regions including Champagne, Loire, Tasmania, California, Italy and Spain. Having been an international wine competition judge I know what it takes to win such a competition. Ordinary judges such as me, are selected from wine buyers, wine writers, sommeliers and other professionals who regularly taste wine. Our job is to find the standout entries which then go before a higher-qualified panel of judges where their finer merits are discussed. Only the best wines proceed to the top panel which usually includes Masters of Wine and highly experienced tasters of the category; they decide the medal winners. Entries are identified by number only and at all times the procedures are fair and proper. Winning such an important prize does not happen by chance; the top wine must satisfy a number of criteria and be recognised as outstanding by a number of industry professionals. It is a considerable achievement to come out top. What makes a great winemaker? I suggest two qualities are vital: humility and vision. All the truly great winemakers I have met around the world are humble. They are humble because they know that they are representing nature. They all sing from the same hymn 88 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

Rebecca Hansford and Ian Edwards, Furleigh Estate Image: Katharine Davies

sheet, telling you that great wines are made in the vineyard, not in the cellar. The second quality is vision, knowing what style or type of wine you wish to make. There are at least three essentials they must get right: matching the grape variety to the terroir; nursing the vines to yield the best possible express of that terroir or variety; and selecting the right moment and method for vinifying their grapes. It sounds easy but it requires knowledge and skill plus an enormous amount of passion and commitment. Passion means caring about every single stage of the process. Commitment means continuous hard work and management throughout the viticultural year. Great wines (apart from the occasional one-off ) are not made by chance. They are the result of passion, commitment and devotion, the same sort of devotion a keen gardener gives to his prize rose bushes or dahlia tubers. Since acidity and freshness of fruit are essential to the production of fine sparkling wine, it is essential to know how to manage their development in the vineyard which meant Furleigh Estate’s Ian going back to school, in this case Plumpton College, our

leading viticultural school in Sussex. He graduated with honours but is the first to tell you how grateful he is for the experience and advice of his tutors. They knew the land they were buying was well-fertilised, well-drained chalk land essential for the production of top-quality chardonnay, pinot noir and petit meunier, and known to produce the best sparkling wines, but they needed to know which particular parts would give them the best results. Each of their three main vineyard sites was carefully selected for either still or sparkling wine. Ian and his wife Rebecca are actuaries by profession and know all about the precision needed for pensionfunding. The same qualities are required for winemaking. When I tasted Ian’s sparkling wines for the first time the words precision and balance came immediately to mind. The feelings were confirmed when I tasted his two still white wines. Dorset Flint is a fresh, fruity chardonnay quite different from any other chardonnay I have ever tasted. Let me be clear: this is not a big, rich chardonnay such as those of Montrachet, Meursault or Margaret River. It is a simple varietal wine of 11 abv but absolutely right for fresh fish with oven-baked chips on

a Friday night. Correct, precise, clean and fruity. Think Cox's apples and medlar. The second wine, 2017 Furleigh Estate Bacchus, was a revelation. Made from a grape that owes its pedigree to German varieties, it is clearly very well suited to our soils and offers really attractive floral aromas, wonderfully fresh fruitiness and a superb structure. Its balance and elegance convince me there is a very good future for this variety when it is well made. Forget the fish and chips; get out your best pan and fry fresh prawns and Lyme Bay scallops with garlic and herbs. We are lucky to have such a gifted winemaking team on our doorstep. No wonder Stephen Spurrier, my colleague in the Circle of Wine Writers and a worldrenowned wine expert, asked Ian to make his wine at nearby Bride Valley. Dorset has several other potentially good winemakers, not least Sherborne Castle Estate, the first vineyard we know about in Sherborne and planted by Roger de Caen c.1080. John Wingfield Digby replanted it in 1982 and it has been making steady progress ever since. Thus, Dorset is beginning to get more firmly written into the wine map of the world. | 89

Food and Drink

POTTED PARTRIDGE WITH QUINCE, BAY LEAVES AND BACON Sasha Matkevich, Head Chef and Owner, The Green with Jack Smith, Junior Sous Chef


his is a simple dish we often enjoy with homemade toasted sourdough bread and plenty of cracked black pepper. This recipe will keep in the fridge for weeks, if you can resist it! Serves 6 Ingredients

4 partridges (oven-ready) 2 medium-sized quince (cleaned, cored and quartered) 300g of green back bacon 100ml verjuice Zest of 1 lemon 3 large bay leave

90 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

250ml clarified butter Cornish sea salt and black pepper to taste Method

1 Preheat the oven to 140C. 2 Put the partridges, quince, bacon, verjuice, lemon zest, bay leaves, half of the butter, salt and pepper in a large casserole and slow cook it in the oven (occasionally turning the partridges and basting with butter) until birds are cooked, quinces caramelised and all the verjuice is evaporated. 3 Pour off all the excess fat and mix with remaining clarified butter. 4 Pull the meat off the bones, discarding the skin.















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Old School Gallery 5 Transfer the meat to a blender together with quince and bacon. Blend until smooth. 6 Press the mixture into buttered ramekins. Put the ramekins into a shallow, ovenproof dish and add boiling water so that it comes halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Cook in the oven on 160C for 20 minutes. 7 Leave to cool for 5 minutes. 8 Cover with hot clarified butter to seal and put in the fridge to set. 9 Serve at room temperature with toasted sourdough bread and pickles.

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Animal Care

Trilby, the Border Terrier 92 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

AGEING GRACEFULLY Mark Newton-Clarke, MA VetMB PhD MRCVS, Newton Clarke Veterinary Surgeons


t’s one of the inevitable facts of life: we all get older - and for our dogs and cats the process happens five or six times faster. During the years between adulthood and the onset of senility it’s easy to be oblivious to the passage of time; although things change they do so slowly and we don’t notice. It’s only when a significant event happens that we know a real milestone has been passed and there’s no way back. Trilby, my faithful old Border Terrier, is almost 13 and starting to show his age. It seemed to happen over a short space of time and started with a symptom we see quite often in dogs, where the patient seems to lose track of their hind legs. Although he could still walk, Trilby would fall over when cornering, trip over the smallest obstacle and was generally uncoordinated. Luckily, he could still go to the toilet as normal and could even cock his leg on one side although not the other. Strange though it may seem, Trilby’s back legs were a bit stiffer than normal and, when tested, his knee-jerk reflex was increased. All those symptoms point towards spinal cord dysfunction. Never good. You can guess my state of mind as owner/vet - trying to be objective and clinical but inevitably compromised through my personal feelings for the patient. No wonder doctors are not allowed to treat their own family. And nor should we. So I sought a second (and third and fourth!) opinion from the other vets in the practice, all of whom confirmed my diagnosis. Whenever we encounter neurological cases, the first job is to localise the site of the problem and then try to find out the cause using x-rays or advanced imaging like MRI. In Trilby’s case, his weak and wobbly back legs combined with increased muscle tone and reflexes meant the problem lay somewhere between his third thoracic vertebra and his third lumbar vertebra (a so-called T3-L3 lesion). An x-ray showed a narrowed inter-vertebral space in the right area, suggesting a slipped disc. However, Trib was not in any pain and one back leg was clearly worse than the other. These observations and the fact that our goofy, over-excitable young labrador likes to charge around, oblivious to obstacles such as a small terrier, meant that I was hopeful of an alternative explanation. But hoping for something doesn’t make it true! The

ultimate arbiter in these cases is the MRI to check for spinal cord compression. Not long ago, such technology was far less available than today, when we can choose from several specialist facilities within an hour’s drive. An appointment was duly made and I transferred the necessary thousand pounds into my current account in preparation! High tech does not come cheap. Trilby was not an emergency case as his symptoms were not progressive and so there were a few days before the scan was scheduled. Confinement in a cage and strict rest (labrador kept at bay) allowed me to monitor progress, which soon became promising as Trib was clearly no worse and I dared to hope a little better. Another consult with my colleagues at work again confirmed my own thoughts and the day before his scan, Trib decided to explore the garden steps. Up he scampered without stumbling and even managed a few tight turns on the patio just to show off. Trying hard not to be too optimistic, I repeated his reflex tests and found a significant improvement. Trib-stick was on the mend! What could explain this recovery? The enforced rest and anti-inflammatory medication would have played a part but the most likely explanation was the alternative diagnosis I had been hoping for. This is a strange condition that mimics a slipped disc but gets better much faster and without surgery. It is called ‘ischaemic myelopathy’ (amongst other names) and means a temporary upset in blood flow to part of the spinal cord. Associated with minor trauma and vigorous exercise, we do not fully understand the condition but it spontaneously resolves in most cases, with normal mobility being restored in a few weeks. So the following day, I cancelled the MRI and kept a very close eye on my precious patient. By the end of the week, Trilby was almost back to normal although maybe a little more reluctant to walk more than once a day. But there again, he is almost 13. Since this episode, I am happy to report my dear old dog has been fine. A triumph of hope over expectation but also a reminder that, even though we’re not as young as we were, a full recovery is always possible. | 93

Animal Care


Poppy Simonson MSc BVSc MRCVS, The Kingston Veterinary Group


lso known as ‘heaves’, equine asthma is the most common airway disease of horses. It is an allergic condition and, much like human allergies, there are various possible triggers depending on the horse. Most horses show signs either when outside in the summer due to plant pollens or when inside due to dust and moulds in feed and bedding. Asthma usually causes coughing, wheezing and discharge from the nose. Signs may be quite mild in the early stages, however the condition will get progressively worse if unmanaged. Your vet may diagnose asthma just on the basis of these signs, or by performing further tests such as an airway wash. The most important thing is to differentiate asthma from a respiratory infection as they can look similar, however an asthmatic horse will not be feverish or under the weather. Sometimes horses with asthma develop sudden respiratory distress similar to a human asthma attack. This is not very common but is distressing for both horse and owner. Whether or not your horse has been diagnosed with asthma before, if he or she is wheezing and short of breath then call the vet. Try not to worry, as the signs will resolve very quickly with treatment. Until the vet arrives, keep them calm and in an environment away from any dust. Once a horse is diagnosed with asthma, the first step is to change his or her environment to remove allergic triggers. Fortunately for many horses, this is all that is needed to bring the condition under control. For those whose symptoms are worse at grass in the summer, it is worth keeping your horse inside during this season. In cases that are triggered indoors by bedding and feed, the horse should be turned out as much as possible. When indoors, ensure they are kept in a well-ventilated box on low-dust bedding. Soaking or steaming hay – or swapping hay for haylage – will also reduce dust exposure. For horses who do not fully respond to changes in management, medications can be helpful. These can be delivered in feed, or preferably by an inhaler – it’s surprising how many horses can be trained to use one with a little persuasion. Whilst asthma is a lifelong condition, it can be successfully controlled with help from your vet. With dedicated management, most horses can live without any signs of the condition and continue their previous work. As horses are brought inside for winter, we may expect to see more cases of asthma, so be on the lookout for symptoms and contact your vet if you are worried. If you think your horse may being showing signs of asthma, call Kingston Vets on 01935 813288 to speak to one of our equine vets. 94 | Sherborne Times | November 2018 | 95




with Rebecca Hansford and Ian Edwards of Furleigh Estate


Available across Bridport and beyond Read online at 96 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

Veterinary services for livestock & pets in Dorset, Somerset and Wiltshire We now have a new collection point for livestock medicines and supplies at Pearce Seeds, Rosedown Farm, Sherborne. Please call the office on 01258 472314 for all enquiries


VOLUNTEER DISTRIBUTORS REQUIRED for Sherborne and the surrounding villages

PLEASE CALL Sherborne Surgery Swan House Lower Acreman Street 01935 816228

Yeovil Surgery 142 Preston Road 01935 474415

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or email | 97


WORLD TOUR CHAMPIONS Mike Riley, Riley’s Cycles


egular readers may recall how ‘G’ was winning the Tour de France as I prepared the previous article. Well, this month British riders completed an impressive hat-trick of Grand Tour wins when Simon Yates won La Vuelta, the Tour of Spain, Chris Froome having won the Giro d’Italia earlier. GB has produced its fair share of champion but, when I was younger, they were eclipsed by exoticsounding foreigners with exciting nicknames such as the Cannibal (Belgian Eddie Merckx), the Pirate (Italian Marco Pantani) and the Badger (French Bernard Hinault). There are too many other champions to mention in this article, so I apologise if I have missed a personal favourite. Some say today’s riders are specialists, for example the sprinter Mark Cavendish from the Isle of Man, whereas those earlier champions could win in any type of event from classics, time trials and Grand Tours and hence were more rounded racers. Bicycles can also become iconic when associated with a legend, and this month’s photographs show some examples from my small collection: Tommy Simpson - Peugeot PX10, Sean Kelly - Vitus 979, Reg Harris - Raleigh Lenton Sports (Reg was Raleigh’s brand ambassador). I collected these bikes to represent some developments in cycle technology such as lugless frames, glued aluminium tubing, gears, use of plastics etc. Some bikes are so iconic that manufacturers are reproducing them, for instance the 1987 Battaglin ridden by Stephen Roche to his triple crown of victories. So, why is British cycling currently so successful? Like other sports where GB punches above its weight, there is a strong grassroots club scene acting as a funnel. Youngsters are introduced to the sport and some pop out 98 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

as star riders, a sort of Wheely Wonka’s cyclist factory; the ingredients are fed in and something amazing comes out of the pipeline. What are these ingredients? Raw talent, excellent coaching, great facilities and an organisation overseeing the process. But what are the secret ingredients that Wheely Wonka sprinkles in to create the magic? Tradition: riders train in all weathers and a stoic approach is encouraged to make them mentally and physically hard. Enthusiasm and self-belief: as a nation we believe that we can produce champions and build on the achievements of national legends such as Boardman, Simpson, Roche, Kelly, O’Bree. Our challenging roads and climate extend riders’ limits and, added to this, there is a ruthless drive for success epitomised by the marginal gains philosophy. Other secret ingredients are controversial and Team Sky has recently been separated from the sport’s governing body, British Cycling, possibly to prevent the national sport being tainted by association. However, Dave Brailsford, the Manager of Team Sky, could be viewed as a real-life Wheely Wonka character. He has been responsible for a team that produced a great success story which became prominent in 2012 when Sir Bradley Wiggins (Wiggo) won the Tour de

France and Olympic time trial gold medal. Since 2010 Team Sky have won six Grand Tours in 7 years with British riders. My favourite current rider is Geraint Thomas who, in his autobiography, describes Bradley Wiggins’ preparation for his campaign. Wiggo lived like a monk for a year following the team experts’ guidance on diet and sleeping, and training on his bike and in the gym for hours each day. Great riders make real sacrifices to be champions and I respect them for this. So what about those controversial ingredients? A little bit of history is needed to set the scene. Pre-war Italy suffered extreme poverty and desperate, ill-prepared men would enter cycle races just to make a little money and obtain food, risking and often losing their lives to do so. The race organisers wanted to capture and hold the public’s attention so the race was deliberately cruel, dangerous and attritional. To survive, early racers’ drink bottles contained ‘stew’, a potentially lethal, performance-enhancing cocktail including strychnine, cocaine, alcohol and drugs to dull pain and improve endurance. You can read more about this in Tim Moore’s entertaining book, Gironimo – Riding the Very Terrible 1914 Tour of Italy. Doping is not a new phenomenon. In a top ten of greatest riders many champions would

be excluded if the list only included ‘clean’ riders. The most infamous is Lance Armstrong who admitted to Oprah Winfrey that he used EPO, blood transfusions, testosterone and corticosteroids. The lengths riders and teams will go to gain an advantage without detection are shocking, for example blood doping, where a rider’s blood is loaded with extra red cells and changed for clean blood after the race. As I write this, Russia is being readmitted to world sports despite not having met the criteria of the anti-doping agency. If you watch the incredible documentary film Icarus you will see the lengths Russia went to in their state-sponsored doping campaign and it is chilling. Bringing things back to our local cycling scene, last Sunday I was privileged to ride with more than 50 riders taking part in the second MS support ride organised by Rich Holder and his team, our fuel being some excellent cake and coffee provided by the Gardens Group at Poundbury. For my training, after an evening ride with Sherborne Cycle Club, energy is replenished by a refreshing glass of Twisted Cider from Longburton served in the Tap, with shared chips and great banter. | 99

@elizabethwatsonillustrations 100 | Sherborne Times | November 2018




T H E S A N C T UA RY, 8 A C H E A P S T R E E T, S H E R B O R N E , T E L : 0 1 9 3 5 8 1 5 0 8 5

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Body and Mind


Sarah Hitch, The Sanctuary Beauty Rooms


ften a sign of ageing or tiredness, under-eye bags, dark circles and puffiness are something that everyone will experience at some point, particularly after a late night or early morning. The eye area is one of the more vulnerable parts of the face and requires a different approach due to the thinness and structure of the skin. Many people experiment with various creams and serums in a bid to make their eye problems less visible. From our late twenties onwards it is good to use a specialist eye product to moisturise and condition the area around the eyes. Before this time allowing a little of your facial moisturiser to venture closer to the eye is sufficient. However, as we age our skin becomes dryer and thinner and using face creams in this area will eventually lead to puffiness and drainage issues. There are several textures of eye products and, whilst it is largely down to personal preference which one you use, some textures have greater benefit for different conditions, for example, a gel is particularly good for puffiness and dark circles due to its cooling action. Cream textures are generally more suited to dryer skin types and serums are a lightweight cocktail of antiageing ingredients that work on a deeper level. Your eye product should become a vital, daily part of your skincare routine to delay the early onset of ageing. After cleansing, gently use a fingertip to apply a small amount to the whole eye socket area and take it out 102 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

towards the temples. As the skin is so thin here it only needs a small amount. A general rule of thumb for eye products is a grain of rice sized piece will do both eyes, top and bottom. Anymore is a waste of the product as the skin can’t absorb it all, and it potentially can block the delicate lymph capillaries resulting in puffy eyes in the morning. Another common occurrence in this area are milia, particularly under the eye although they can also occur on the eyelids. Milia are small white pearls or bumps that form under the skin surface due to the application of too much or too rich a product. These can be removed by an experienced beauty therapist and may also disperse when the current products cease to be used in the eye area. Your eye area may require a different eye product for day and night to fully address concerns around the clock. For example, a brightening gel could be used in the morning containing ingredients such as anti-oxident vitamin C and stimulating caffeine. In the evening try a richer eye serum containing hyaluronic acid and retinol to work on smoothing and firming the skin. Facials and Micro-current Non-Surgical Face Lifts can help to lift and drain the eye area, giving a more youthful appearance. Wearing sunglasses will also help reduce the fine lines caused by squinting in the sunshine so remember them in sunnier driving conditions.

LOOK WHO’S BACK! After a few months on maternity leave, one of our favourite fishies has returned to the shoal! Her scissors (and wit) are sharper than ever before, and she’s looking forward to welcoming clients old and new! To celebrate, we’re saying NO to ‘No’vember, and YES to

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Body & Mind



Lucy Pollard, Pilates Instructor

t the end of a long hibernation a grizzly bear emerges with her cubs, nimble, fresh and active. I on the other hand, roll out of bed after just a 7-hour night, and shuffle to the bathroom channelling my inner 90 year old through my knees and back. With the help of a hidden camera in the bear’s den, some intrepid researchers in British Columbia discovered that, at the same time every day for around 30 minutes, the hibernating mother bear half wakes, then paces, yawns and stretches, before settling down again for a further 24 hours. This movement reactivates the tissues, preventing them from seizing up over the winter months of confinement. My own early morning routine (when I remember) is a series of moving stretches before I even get up; five minutes on a good day, one minute if I’m cutting it fine. Getting out of bed after doing this makes walking a piece of cake. No cat or dog would forget to do their yawning stretches after a long sleep, but we human beings seem to have lost that instinctive stretching reflex, which is odd if you consider the number of hours we spend asleep, or sitting at our computers or in our cars. However, it’s not just the muscles that the mother bear is firing up, or that I am addressing during my before-I-get-out-of-bed workout. It’s fascia. If you’ve ever had plantar fasciitis in your heel or foot you may recognise the word and associate it with pain. If you’ve been unlucky enough to damage your Achilles tendon or tear a ligament, you will be aware of fascia in its strongest form, as dense connective tissue - the strapping that attaches muscle to bone (tendon), and bone to bone (ligament) which absorbs shock and distributes impact. The fascia I’m specifically targeting in my early morning exercises and during my deep stretch Pilates classes, is a finer version; the super-strong, tensile, 3-D cobwebbing that weaves its way in, around and through every part of the body, wrapping and connecting skin, blood vessels, nerves, fat, muscle and bone. Viewed through an endoscope in a living body there is no 104 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

division between these layers. Made predominately of collagen protein and kept in peak form by good hydration and by Vitamin C (green leafy vegetables and citrus foods), zinc and copper (shellfish, nuts and seeds, dairy and eggs), and the nutrients found in red meat, this wonderful material literally keeps our bodies together and our skin elastic and youthful. Fascia keeps your organs supported and suspended, separate but connected, controlling power, spring, movement and shape. There is no part of the body that is not cocooned and woven through with this resilient gossamer or suspended by its millions of strong, stretchy guy ropes criss-crossing in every direction, taking tension as required. When you do a cartwheel or a somersault, or you fall over, fascia’s amazing elastic strength brings you back to your original form. And it is sensory; fascia has the highest proportion of nerve endings within the body. It is what you feel when you do your stretches or get injured. The importance of fascia was only discovered in the mid-noughties. In a dead body, this fine material desiccates and flattens, its form and function disappearing as the different parts of the body separate back into layers of skin, fat, muscle, bone. Modern surgical procedures and revolutionary dissection techniques have finally allowed us to see what is really happening in a live being. Although the study of fascia is in its infancy, it is already affecting how we exercise, how surgeons operate, how athletes train and how we manage pain. There is no start or finish to fascia, no joins or ends, everything is connected to everything else; every movement in the body will have a knock-on effect via the fascia to every other part of the body. It attaches, straps, wraps, connects, and suspends. Nothing is unconnected. So, good people, start stretching first thing, drink plenty of water, eat your greens, and go out and find a class where you can explore your own inner stretch and get in touch with your fascia. | 105

Body & Mind

HOW HIGH CAN YOU JUMP? Simon Partridge BSc (Sports Science) Personal Trainer SPFit


ast month, I wrote about the benefits of being stronger and lifting Atlas Stones. This month we look at ‘jumping’ or, more specifically, the exercise known as ‘box jumps’. Jumping is not only fun but also a superb exercise to build leg power and strength. It is a simple exercise (in theory) that requires very limited equipment - box jumps are now used as a go-to exercise in many standard and CrossFit gyms. The benefits of jumping include improved balance, coordination, agility and reactivity, and the recruitment of fast-twitch muscle fibres. These benefits will also improve performance in sports such as rugby, netball, 106 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

basketball and football. We love box jumps because they are so efficient at producing amazing results for our clients through the incorporation of explosive movement and cardiovascular effort. The fast-twitch muscle recruitment mentioned before cannot usually be obtained by gym machines such as the leg press and leg extension machine. When you perform a box jump, you contract and then powerfully extend multiple muscles all at once: your quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, calves and core muscles will all be activated. Working the fast-twitch muscle fibres trains your body to generate more force, improving your ability

to run up a hill, push off a foothold and jump over obstacles. Many people now take part in obstacle races such as the internationally famous ‘Tough Mudder’. More locally we have over 25 members training for the Up, Down and Dirty event in Yeovil in November in aid of St Margaret’s Hospice Care. We believe in ensuring that exercising in a gym has benefits once you are outside it. Having a specific goal and training with a team are powerful tools in maintaining motivation and achieving the results you want. There is also a certain ‘wow’ factor in seeing someone do something amazing such as a high box jump. It can inspire the rest of us. Just ask Sarah; her partner Nigel is in the photo. If you have never used box jumps before, you start with other plyometric moves such as squat jumps and tuck jumps. When you are confident enough to start jumping onto a box, start with a small box and work your way up to higher boxes. Most gyms will have different size boxes, often from as small as 3”/7.5cm up to 24”/60cm in height, which you can put together to increase the height of your jump gradually. There is still a lot of technique to master with a box jump. Stand with the box about a foot in front of you, arms by your sides. Hinge from the hips and bend your knees to send your bottom back and down, slightly higher than a squat. Bring your arms back in line with your torso, then drive them forward as you jump up, standing tall — the momentum from your arms will help you get to the top of the box. Land on the box on your heels with both feet and knees bent so most of the weight of the jump goes into your glutes and quads, rather than your joints. To further reduce the impact on your joints, step back down to the ground instead of jumping. Whether you use the box jump to improve leg power or cardiovascular fitness, you will not only be amazed by the effect it will have on the appearance of your legs but also by the endorphins/feel good factor you will get as you do something you didn’t think you could do. So go on, how high can you jump? SPFit has a variety of training options designed for all abilities from 1:1 coaching and a Running Club to small group training that includes power yoga (Broga), outdoor bootcamps, weight lifting and crossfit type classes.


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Body & Mind


Image: Stuart Brill

Craig Hardaker, Communifit, with Dr Christine Foster and Leah Hughes, Advanced Nurse Practitioner, Newland Medical Practice


have been a GP referral consultant for several years now and Communifit has two qualified instructors. But what does the GP referral scheme involve? Who better to explain than the ladies at Newland Medical Practice, Dr Christine Foster and Advanced Nurse Practitioner Leah Hughes. If you have a chronic illness, physical or mental, and would like the chance to improve this and your general wellbeing, then increasing your exercise may be a good choice. Exercise will improve conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes (type one and two), asthma, arthritis, fertility problems, polycystic-ovaries, osteoporosis, anxiety and depression, to name but a few. Many patients feel the burden of taking too many pills, sometimes leading to unwanted side effects. Exercise is just part of getting and keeping fitter - diet is also very important, as hopefully you read in October’s edition. We have seen patients reduce or come off their medication altogether by actively taking control of diet and adding in some exercise, finding a level of health they have not seen for years. Exercise referral, introduced by the NHS in 2001, may be just what you are looking for. The GP or Nurse Practitioner will not always prescribe medicine; they are now just as likely to give you a LiveWell Dorset card or refer you for exercise. With this regular exercise 108 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

programme, you will get a qualified instructor/coach who will guide you back to health in a structured and safe way. They are trained to ensure that you exercise at a level that is right for you and promote wellness. They can support many different ages and abilities of people. Referral for ‘exercise on prescription’ is simple: just book in at your surgery. The clinician can discuss your needs and complete a referral form to a local instructor. The form involves taking a measurement of height, weight, and blood pressure and it includes basic information about your health. From this the instructor can decide on a plan with you, ensuring all your needs are met. The exercise can be individual in a gym or in a group setting and could include aqua exercise. Alternatively, you can call LiveWell Dorset on 0800 8401628 or 01305 233105 for advice on weight management, physical activity or alcohol reduction, or for further information visit their website. Perhaps, the last time you visited your GP surgery, they asked you about your symptoms and then maybe they said, ‘Can you just step on the scales?’ Some people leap on with confidence and others empty their pockets and tiptoe carefully! So why would you want to get fitter and lose weight? The government has called for action on obesity, therefore the conversation that comes next is inevitable.

The facts around obesity and reducing weight to a healthy BMI accompanied by 30 minutes of exercise at least 5 days a week are mounting. The website gives detailed information on how obesity can be linked to many types of cancer, including cancers associated with your gut and liver, breast cancer, ovarian and uterine cancer, multiple myeloma and thyroid cancer. Mind, a charity focusing on mental health, highlights that our physical health and mental health are closely linked, with many people not getting enough exercise to stay healthy. Physical activity is particularly important if you have a mental health problem (Mind 2018). Exercise can help motivation, low mood, anxiety and stress. Low mood and anxiety can lead to emotional eating. Exercise helps with improving your wellbeing and can help you control your urge to eat. You can find others that are in the same position to support you through your journey. As well as exercise referral there are lots of other ways to increase your exercise. Sherborne Health Walks has been set up to help people get fit while meeting new people. There is no need to book; just turn up every Friday at the main entrance to Waitrose at 2pm. Every week thousands of people of all ages around the world will run, jog or walk a timed 5km ParkRun. They are open to everyone, free, and are safe and easy to take part in. These events are in pleasant parkland surroundings and people of all abilities and ages are encouraged to participate; this is a very social way to exercise, or volunteer, and make new friends. More information can be found on their website. Communifit classes in Sherborne are another great option for GP referrals, where people can get help with increasing their activities through a range of exercise classes or individual support. There are lots of opportunities for everyone and particularly the more elderly. Website details below. Preventing disease is the best medicine and regular exercise is a positive way to safeguard your future, ensuring you give your body and mind the best chance of health. It is never too late to make a start. Your GP and Nurse Practitioner are here to support you and, with the help of community resources, you can have a fitter future.

Community Classes, in Community Halls, for Everyone

NEW CLASSES Hips & Knees




Seated Yoga


Seated Zumba Gold and Tai Chi


Sit and Strengthen


A chair based exercise class solely focusing on hips and knees. Strengthening both joints, and connecting muscle groups - all lower body activities will become much easier! Fantastic class for those who is waiting to have or have had knee and hip replacements. Mondays 12.45pm at the West End Hall. 45mins.

Contains the pursuit of stretching, breathing, meditating and strengthening the mind and the body all at the same time. With a powerful breath, deep stretches and strength conditioning, you will get a calmer mind and stronger body. Tuesdays 8.30pm at Tinneys Lane Youth Club. 1 hour. All the benefits of traditional Yoga, but without the need to get up and down from the floor! Fantastic for anyone looking to gain upper arm strength and core stability, whilst building a calmer mind and stronger body. Perfect for lower body rehab. Tuesdays 13.30pm at West End Hall. 1 hour.

The fantastic combination of Latino dancing in Zumba Gold and relaxing flowing movements in Tai Chi - two 30 minute classes combined to create one fantastic class! Get strong, mobile, dance your feet away and have fun all from a seated position! Wednesday 12.30pm at Tinneys Lane Youth Club. 1 hour. A chair-based exercise class aiming to increase your strength, flexibility, joint mobility, balance & functional independence - all while having fun! Thursdays 14.30pm at Digby Memorial Church Hall. 1 hour.

Previous classes still available, plus new classes in Yeovil and surrounding villages, contact for more information. Pay as you go


Booking not required. For more information call 07791 308 773 or email communifit

communi_fit | 109

Body & Mind

NOVEMBER, AN IN-BETWEEN MONTH Jill Cook, Counsellor, BACP Snr Accredited, 56 London Road Clinic


ovember sometimes feels like an ‘in-between’ time for me. I love autumn with its changing colours and dewy spiders’ webs but November can seem like a space between all that colour and the end of the year. It can be a time of adjustment for families with children and young people too. New schools have begun, initial excitements and anxieties have changed, and halfterm holidays are over. New friendship groups are being made, perhaps some old ones outgrown, and household schedules have changed. Students have started university or college and may have left home, leaving parents and siblings to adjust to life without the familiar dynamics. While nature is preparing for a period of dormancy our lives continue to adjust to the changing demands that we experience both at home and at work. We are past the equinox now and the evenings are longer, our access to outdoor activities is not quite so straightforward and, for those who rely on outdoor exercise, life takes a little more planning. Balancing work, family and relationships with friends is always 110 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

important but perhaps even more so at this time of year. It can be tempting to draw the curtains when it gets dark and not engage with the world outside, however research shows clearly that exercise and social networks are important if we are to maintain both our physical and mental health. For many of us the shorter days may trigger an anticipated dip in mood and, along with it, possibly changes in behaviour. It’s easy to justify ‘comfort food’ at this time of year but for some it could mean an increase in foods such as cakes and biscuits, which can be great at the time but generally don’t help us to feel good about ourselves. Alcohol may seem like a solution to the low mood too and it certainly might make you feel better for a while, however it is a depressant and not so helpful in the long term. Becoming involved with creative activities can really help. Artslink Fizz! is a National Lottery-funded Art for Wellbeing project supporting people living in Sherborne and the surrounding villages. It offers Parkinson’s Dance, Art for Memory and Art for Parents, all of which are

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free and may help to keep a good balance in your life. Whether you are coping with changes in family dynamics, changing demands on your health or time - perhaps you have taken on a caring role for a parent or are adapting to the change in day length - it can be useful to share your thoughts and feelings rather than have them keep going round in your head. Talking to a trusted friend or professional can give you the opportunity to look at what’s bothering you from a different angle. This may enable you to change your behaviour at an early stage rather than waiting until it has become a problem. By building these things into your life you will have the resources available to help you cope with the challenges that inevitably build-up towards the Christmas period, allowing you to enjoy events with as little stress as possible.

Wednesday 28th November Castle Gardens Sherborne 6.30pm


An opportunity to remember a loved one by sponsoring a light on our special trees. Names will then be entered into our Christmas 2018 Book of Remembrance. Application forms are available by telephoning us on 01305 261800 or visiting our website

Orchard Park Garden Centre Gillingham 6.30pm

Registered Charity No. 1000414 | 111

Body & Mind


Dr Tim Robinson MB BS MSc MRCGP DRCOG MFHom, GP and Complementary Practitioner, Glencairn House


n adverse reaction to food is due to either food allergy or food intolerance. There has been a four-fold increase in food allergy over the last 20 years due our ‘cleanliness’ lifestyle and children tending not to play outside in the mud as they did in the good old days! Our immune systems are no longer occupied in fighting infection; instead they react against previously innocent and innocuous substances in the air we breathe and the food we eat. The effects of food allergy usually occur within a minute or so of eating but may not appear for as long as two hours afterwards. There are a number of symptoms caused by food allergy such as tummy colic, diarrhoea and bloating, runny nose with clear secretions, sneezing, post-nasal drip, catarrh and asthma. An allergic reaction to food may lead to the serious condition known as anaphylactic reaction or shock, in which the tongue and lips swell, the airway narrows causing breathing difficulties and blood pressure falls, which can be lifethreatening. Thankfully only 20% of all anaphylactic reactions are due to food allergy. The commonest foods responsible for food allergy are milk, egg, peanut and tree nuts, fish, prawns, wheat and soy. Food intolerance is also an adverse response to food but the reaction does not involve the immune system. The mechanism of food intolerance is not known and the effects tend to occur a few hours after eating the food responsible for the intolerance. The range of effects for food intolerance is much wider than food allergy. Most commonly they include gut symptoms such as

112 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

colic, bloating, gas, alternating bowel habit. However, food intolerance can also cause eczema, asthma, headache, migraine, palpitations and vague symptoms such as non-specific tiredness. An adverse reaction to milk may be due to a condition called lactose intolerance in which there is an absence of the enzyme that breaks down the sugar in milk, thus leading to abdominal fullness and diarrhoea. Another common food causing intolerance is wheat, which is thought to be a major contributor to irritable bowel syndrome. Other causes of food intolerance are the effects of the chemicals in the food itself such as caffeine or salicylates, as well as sensitivities to food colourants such as E factors or tartrazine and preservatives such as sulphites. Food allergy can be differentiated from food intolerance by skin-prick testing or specific blood tests. These allergy tests are scientifically validated and supported by research, unlike others such as kinesiology (measurement of arm strength), Vega testing (the ‘black box’), hair analysis and postal finger-prick blood tests. A positive skin prick test for a specific food is extremely helpful as it identifies the food responsible for the allergic symptoms. A negative test rules out allergy as the cause for the adverse reactions which means that it is food intolerance causing the gut symptoms, asthma or eczema. People find allergy testing helpful as they then know which food they must definitely avoid as well as an understanding of the condition and its effects.

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114 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

While being ideal for long-term residential needs, the home also maintains a respite service and offers day care to the surrounding communities. Carers are committed to understanding personal needs and adhering to a tailored approach. A number of activities are organised to support personal interests and physical health, and residents have access to information technology while enjoying home-cooked meals. The Old Vicarage Care Home has won over 30 national and regional awards over the last few years for their commitment to care of the elderly to back-up their reputation as one of the leading care homes in Dorset.

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commitment we achieve



Kate Norris, Later Life Support Team, Mogers Drewett


n my role, I assist clients with the management of their finances, finding suitable local care services and overseeing ongoing care needs. There’s no such thing as a typical working day although much of my time is spent visiting clients and assisting with their day-to-day needs. Many clients struggle with financial and legal decisions; some of them also live alone and are left to cope with the strains of daily life, and require practical, everyday support and help. I was driving into work one day when I received a call from the care agency that looks after one of my clients whose house had unfortunately flooded in the night. My client was understandably worried by what had happened. Arrangements were made for her to stay in a hotel, and I went to visit her there to check she was well. Her carers were also able to continue visiting her there, so she was well looked after in the immediate aftermath of the event. I then spoke with her insurers to help find her a suitable care home to live in temporarily. After the meeting, it became clear it would be a matter of months that my client would need to spend in the care home, so I visited regularly to offer reassurance and update her. It was also important that she was able to make her own choices for things such as replacement carpets in order to maintain her independence. After a couple of months in the care home, my client had new experiences and interacted with other residents. So, when it was time to move back into her house, I made suggestions that I thought could make a real difference to the quality of her life and therefore her wellbeing. The thing she loved about being in the care home was the company and, through my contacts with care providers, I was able to arrange for weekly companionship visits and trips out. She also enjoyed the personal care she received, and I was able to arrange for a bath lift to be fitted at home. The way I see it is that, if it were my relative and I couldn’t take care of them day-to-day, how would I want them to be treated? I’ve been known to do clients’ washing for them when there was no family to do this and I felt that it was the right thing to do - it was a small thing that could make a real difference to them and their quality of life. My role is very varied and when I’m in the office, I’m focused on keeping clients and their families updated on their financial situation, ensuring bills are paid and that assets are managed correctly. It is my job to put everyone at ease and take the weight off my clients’ shoulders, so they can concentrate on living life to the full.

116 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

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118 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

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SELLING PART OF THE MONARCH’S WAY Mark Lewis FRICS FNAVA, Partner, Symonds and Sampson


he Monarch’s Way is a 615-mile footpath in England that approximates the escape route taken by King Charles II after being defeated in the Battle of Worcester. It runs from Worcester via Bristol and Yeovil to Brighton. All of the footpath is waymarked. The waymark is yellow and shows a picture of the ship Surprise above the Prince of Wales’ three-point feathered crown which is superimposed on a Royal Oak tree. Charles had lost to Cromwell’s New Model Army at the Battle of Worcester on 3rd September 1651, and was a wanted man. A reward of £1000 was offered for the capture of the King. It is likely that the King and anyone helping him would have been executed for treason if caught. The King had a distinctive appearance: very swarthy and 6’ 2” tall. Furthermore, there were cavalry patrols whose specific task was to find the King. Fortunately for Charles, the Catholics had an organisation with 90 years of experience in keeping secrets and hiding people. However, it was also illegal for Catholics to travel more than five miles away from their homes without a pass from the sheriff of the county, increasing the hazards faced by those who helped him. The escape, with near misses, mistaken identity and heart-stopping moments, was as thrilling as it was dangerous and although most of the route has been radically changed in the intervening centuries by enclosure, mining, urbanisation and the building of roads, canals and railways it runs through Grove Farm, North Cheriton, a 130-acre farm that Symonds and Sampson auctioned on 21st September. The King crossed through some of our most stunning scenery and in the immediate area he was sheltered by Colonel Wyndham at Trent Manor House. The next part of the journey leads down to the Dorset coast where a ship had been found to take the King to France. He stayed overnight on 22nd September 1651 at the Queen’s Arms, Charmouth, due to take passage the 120 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

following day. Unfortunately the plan fell through and the King beat a hasty retreat inland, returning to Trent. From Charmouth the Monarch’s Way follows the South West Coast Path east along the Jurassic Coast of Dorset past St Gabriel’s Mouth, over Golden Cap, the highest point on the south coast, through Seatown, over Thorncombe Beacon and past Eype’s Mouth to West Bay. From here it heads north up the River Brit to Bridport, swinging west and north to Pilsdon Pen, briefly joining the Wessex Ridgeway eastwards before reaching Broadwindsor. The King hid overnight in the

Grove Farm sold for ÂŁ1.69 million, the highest price achieved for an individual lot at a Symonds and Sampson auction.

George Inn on 23rd September 1651. He then continued eastwards to the north of Beaminster, before zig-zagging north and east to Winyard’s Gap near Chedington. Here the Way meets the head of the River Parrett Trail. Continuing north, the path enters Somerset and passes Hardington Marsh, swinging east from Hardington Mandeville to East Coker and then north through Yeovil and Mudford. Crossing the River Yeo and back into Dorset the path returns, like the King, to Trent. The King stayed here before setting out for the south coast and exile in France.

Skirting north of Sherborne to Sandford Orcas then reentering Somerset, the path passes to the south of Corton Denham to Charlton Horethorne and South Cheriton, then north to pass under the A303 to Wincanton. From here it continues north-east to Penselwood. I spend a lot of time at the coast and have walked part of the coast path but I intend one time to strike inland and follow the Monarch Way. It will be a lovely journey and, hopefully, less nerve-wracking than it was in 1651! | 121


LANDLORD AND TENANT UPDATE Paul Gammage and Anita Light, Ewemove Sherborne


he world of landlord and tenant never seems to stand still, so here’s a quick update of some of the recent more important developments.

Protection for tenants against unfair fees

The Government has announced plans to stop the practice of landlords (or their agents) charging tenants high and unfair fees for minor damage, as part of the Tenant Fees Bill. The idea is to stop agencies or landlords charging large amounts of money for something which costs very little to repair. Under the new default fee provision, a landlord or agent will only be able to recover reasonably incurred costs and must provide evidence of these costs to the tenant before they can impose any charges. This is part of a number of proposals to protect tenants, another of which is to reduce the time in which landlords and agents must pay back any fees that they have unlawfully charged. An end to three-year tenancies – already!

The Government published plans in July this year to introduce a minimum 3-year tenancy term with a 6-month break clause, part of the thinking being that it would ‘help renters put down roots and give landlords longer-term financial security’. Many industry experts expressed concern about the proposals at the time as an oversimplification of the problem which seemed to ignore a number of factors. The consultation period on the issue has closed and it would appear that the Government has listened as the plans have apparently been scrapped. The Treasury allegedly blocked the plans due to concerns that it could deter people from investing in the buy-to-let sector. Recent research has revealed

122 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

that most tenants prefer 12-month contracts, something which ties in with our experience. Revenge eviction review

In July 2017 Citizens Advice published research which revealed that 57% of the tenants who took part in the research had stated that they hadn’t forced the issue of a repair with their landlord for fear of repercussions. 30% of tenants said they’d carried out repairs themselves and 14% had paid for repair work themselves because of fears of retaliation. And that was despite the introduction of legislation in 2015 designed to protect tenants from unfair evictions! At the time, Citizens Advice called for better protection by the introduction of independent complaints bodies or Alternative Dispute Resolution schemes across the private rented sector. Citizens Advice have now released a new report on revenge evictions and are calling for an urgent review of legislation. The latest report states that private renters who formally complain about issues such as damp and mould in their home have a 46% chance of being issued with an eviction notice within six months. What’s more, according to The Chartered Institute of Environmental Health, only 10% of environmental health professionals have reported a reduction in the number of retaliatory evictions since 2015. They state, ‘75% of health professionals knew of tenants who received a no-fault eviction notice in the last year, following a complaint to Environmental Health about their housing, and nearly a quarter (23%) reported this happening in the last month’. As always, it remains to be seen how the Government will respond!

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126 | Sherborne Times | November 2018



Andrew Fort B.A. (Econ.) CFPcm Chartered MCSI APFS, Certified and Chartered Financial Planner, Fort Financial Planning


here are few bigger priorities for people today than investing for the future. The rising cost of health and education, soaring house prices, longer life expectancy and the increasing strain on welfare budgets means it is vital that everyone does what they can to remain financially independent for the rest of their lives. Sadly the reality is that most people are saving far too little and their knowledge of the financial markets is almost entirely based upon the financial press and comments from friends and family. In general terms, Fort Financial Planning would argue that ordinary investors typically end up doing precisely the opposite of what they should be doing. The articles that I have written throughout 2018 aimed to explain, as we call it, the Art and Science of Investing. The biggest mistake that most people make is not determining what their financial goals are. They might decide on some short-term goals such as a new car or special holiday, however they rarely spend time finding out what they want to achieve longer term. Even when they do know - and the goal may be as simple as ensuring that they never, ever, in any circumstances, run out of money – they don’t then run the numbers. Very few people have any idea how much their current lifestyle costs them, let alone working out how much it might cost when they stop working for a living. At retirement, most people suddenly become time-rich. One of the major benefits of working, at least until internet shopping was discovered, was that working stopped you from spending. In retirement, the cost of travel may increase significantly. Many people, now that they have the time, wish to travel the world or, indeed, to see more of the United Kingdom. It is not unusual for travelling expenses to increase significantly. For those people who stay at home, there is the cost of heating the home during the day and not just in the evening. Without knowing the cost of one’s lifestyle it is very difficult to make sensible investment decisions. It is only when this future lifestyle has been identified that real financial planning can begin. It is then possible to work out how much needs to be saved, what rate of return is required, whether it will be necessary to downsize and how much needs to be held in reserve for doom and gloom scenarios such as the provision of long-term care. One of the biggest impediments to becoming financially well organised, which is a consequence of planning for the future, is that it appears to be too big a job. The hardest part is getting going. The alternative is not getting started, remaining financially disorganised and not knowing with certainty what the future holds. Food for thought? | 127



et’s start with a quick explanation and definition of what a hard disk is. It’s an electromechanical data storage device that uses magnetic storage to store and retrieve data using a rotating disk coated with magnetic material. Imagine an old record player with a vinyl record and pick-up arm; a hard disk is similar except it’s all in a case, works a whole lot faster and you can read from it and write to it. Don’t confuse it with memory (RAM), which is temporary storage used while the computer is processing. So, your computer has a hard disk in it to store the operating system, programs and your data. When you turn it on, the computer loads what it needs from the disk and stores what you’ve done when you’ve finished. Just like a library, it has space where all the files are stored and an index of where everything is so that it can be accessed quickly and efficiently; the speed with which your computer does this is determined by the type and speed of the disk. Older disks (pre-2004) are probably the IDE (or PATA) type that used a wide ribbon cable to connect to the computer; we still see these occasionally but they’ve nearly all been replaced by the newer SATA (Serial Advanced Technology Attachment) disks which are much more manageable. The development of SATA meant faster transfer speeds, easier cable management (smaller boxes) and the ability to connect multiple disks more easily. However, these disks still have their limiting factors: the faster you spin the disk, the faster you can read the data - until the spinning causes the disk to wobble a bit and then you’ve reached the limit. As files have got bigger and we’ve started to store more data, the demand for faster 128 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

disks reached a physical limit and a new technology was needed. Welcome SSD! SSD (Solid State Drive) isn’t a disk at all, it’s just a lot of electronics in a box the same shape and size so that we can easily fit them into existing computers and laptops. There is no spinning disk, no motor, no pick-up, no moving parts at all and, because its all electronic, it can be accessed at almost the same speed as the rest of the computer. The SATA connection is still used but this has been upgraded to facilitate even faster transfer speeds. New computers are no longer being made without this functionality as the SSD is built-in along with the RAM and processor… fully integrated! However, many new computers are still supplied with the older, mechanical disks. I would see the transition taking at least another five years or so. In the meantime, you should consider making sure that your new computer has an SSD even if it’s a bit more expensive, or have it upgraded immediately as it's well worth the money. If you’ve got an existing machine that’s running slow then the likely cause is the older hard disk lacking in performance. Over time the bearings in the motor and the pick-up arm wear and become less efficient causing a slowing down in the transfer of data. The solution is to upgrade your disk to a new SSD; a simple and pain-free copy of your existing disk will give your ailing PC a whole new lease of life! As always, if in doubt or if you need help, you know where to come! Next month: Cookies, T&C's, Privacy Policies etc.

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FOLK TALES with Colin Lambert



utumn is lovely. Shorter days mean Sheila and me off ‘t’ cinema in Digby Road. Fish, chips and mushy peas, a quickie in the Tap then… ‘Sold out’ greeted us at the door! ‘Sorry, you should have bought a ticket’. ‘Where’s the ticket office?’ I asked. ‘Over the road in the TIC,’ came the response. Back to the Tap. I played Sir Walter Ralegh last week at the 400th anniversary banquet. Quick call to Lady Elizabeth (Cindy Chant). ‘Where do I get my ticket?’ TIC was the response. Great. Same place. ‘Morning. Is this the Ticket Information Centre?’ I asked, politely. ‘We’re not a ticket office. I’m Janet, can I help you?’ Yikes, that took my breath away. ‘May I have a ticket for the 400th Anniversary Banquet please?’ Janet smiles. ‘Hello Colin. That’s an interesting new hairstyle and beard.’ ‘Thanks. It’s my Sir Walter look. Do I detect a Brummy accent?’ ‘I’m no Brummy,’ laughs Janet. ‘I was born in Wolverhampton, the youngest of three. Been a Wanderers – well, all sports really - fan all my life. Molineux, Wanderers stadium, was a pretty gruesome place but I loved it. And singing has been my passion from 9 years old - sang alto in the school and church choirs. Singing and sport are hugely important to me.’ ‘Interesting combination; tell me more.’ ‘My earliest memories are of Saturday afternoons, tea on the table and, at 5pm, sports report on the radio. Every January, I log the year’s sporting events in my diary. I’ll watch almost anything.’ ‘What about after you left school?’ ‘Exeter University to study law, although I spent more time in the music department than lectures. Played violin, had the odd drink, finals in Chester, four months as articled clerk in Hereford then walked out and went home to mum and dad.’ ‘As you do. Got a job?’ 132 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

‘Yes, legal publishing, marketing and then financial services: TSB in Andover, Zurich Life in Portsmouth. 1988 was a leap year so I proposed to Myles. We married in 1989, moved to Winchester, had our son in 1996 and I took maternity leave from my job. I wanted to return part-time, found a coworker to job share, all approved by HR. Six weeks later, I was unemployed - some male director had said no. With a five-month-old son to support and Myles regularly working in China, I found myself a lawyer.’ ‘Sex discrimination?’ ‘Totally. The Equal Opportunities Commission supported me. I had kept contemporaneous notes, as you do with lawyer training, and at the end of day 1 in court they conceded. I won. I’m proud of what I achieved; I made my mark in a tiny way. It made national newspaper headlines.’ ‘Well done. What next?’ ‘With Myles still in China and, by then, two children to raise, I got a part-time job with a music therapy charity. The power of music is magical, it touches people. I worked in admin but saw the amazing work of the therapy team.’ ‘I feel a change coming.’ ‘Yes, we packed it all in, no more China. Bought a holiday letting complex in Maiden Newton and I got a part-time job at Bridport TIC. We had seven amazing years. The children reached secondary school age so we moved to Dorchester in 2008 and, in 2009, I joined Sherborne Tourism Office - not ticket office!’ Janet possesses quite a steely look. ‘And for breakfast?’ ‘Blueberries, oats and yogurt.’ ‘Sherborne Tourist Information Centre, not ticket office, I get it’. ‘Luckily, I inherited an established team and still being part of West Dorset made the transition easy. Tourism is key to the success of Sherborne and has a massive impact on the local economy. Our office gets over 60,000 visitors annually.’ ‘How does tourism adapt to this ever-changing world

Image: Katharine Davies

of apps for everything?’ ‘Visit Dorset App. Tells you where to visit, eat, stay, walk etc. We have a huge community role though and provide the still-important, face-to-face service. ‘Tell me more about your music.’ ‘I joined Sherborne Chamber Choir in 2003. We rehearse each week and do 3 concerts a year, plus the occasional wedding. I sang in York Minster last year with another choir – I’m in several. Choral music is a passion. Handel, theme to champions league, is a favourite.’ ‘Wolves in the Premier League?’ ‘I’m in heaven. Not sure about the champions

league though.’ ‘And down-time?’ ‘There’s nothing better than the four of us eating around the table, talking and laughing, music everpresent. We all have different tastes but there’s one band we all agree on - Freddie Mercury and Queen.’ ‘Well, the show must go on.’ I take my ticket and leave. Thank you, Janet, for sharing your life’s journey with Folk Tales. PS. The 400th Sir Walter ball was great. Cindy Chant, playing my wife Elisabeth for the night, was such fun. | 133



‘Modern man talks of a battle with nature, forgetting that, if he won the battle, he would find himself on the losing side.’ (Small is Beautiful, E.F. Schumacher) Sherborne Science Cafe was founded in 2006 by a group of local scientists. These included the astronomer Dr Percy Seymour, John and Sylvia West, and Tony Allen, who wanted science to establish a place in the culture of our town. Artists have always had their galleries and the literati their theatres but people interested in science and technology had few places in which to explore and discuss scientific developments. Sherborne Science Cafe was a part of a national trend which had the aim of bringing scientists and interested members of the public into contact with each other. Meetings are held in an accessible local venue, with casual seating and refreshments; this encourages a friendly and informal setting as the following comment confirms: ‘I had never heard of a science cafe until I moved to Sherborne in 2014. What on earth could it be? What sort of people attended the meetings, and would I be made welcome and not be out of my depth? I need not have worried, I have enjoyed every talk and have been made to feel part of the organisation.’ The person who made this comment eventually become our new treasurer. At the Science Café, a series of lectures are given by experts in their field. These allow the audience to ask questions and to informally explore some of the latest ideas in science and technology and to consider their effect on 134 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

society. No scientific knowledge is required, just curiosity. Science is very much part of our everyday lives in terms of issues such as food safety, energy use, transport systems, pharmaceutics and hospital treatments, and the buildings we inhabit. Scientific research also informs governments on such profound issues as how mankind can continue to survive on this planet in the years to come. You can come along and just listen to an invited speaker over a drink or participate by asking questions at the end. There are no tickets to buy or membership to sign up to and the bar sells beer, wine and soft drinks. We just ask for a donation to cover costs. Here are just a few of the topics we have discussed during the last 12 years: What was the Star of Bethlehem?; Fracking; The Mathematics of Jazz; Forensic Dentistry; Antimatter; Memory; Four Seasons in One Day; Wave and Tidal Energy. In addition to our lecture programme we have other annual events. In early January we have a ‘Great Egg Race’ which involves a practical project and a quiz to be solved in teams. Each year we arrange a visit to a scientific institution – Kew Gardens last year and Cheltenham Science Festival this summer. Full details and reports can be found on our website. The Science Café meets on the fourth Wednesday of each month in the Church Hall, Digby Road, 7pm for 7.30pm. Contact: 01935 814122


“We have the right to be recognised as who we are, to make choices about our lives including taking risks, and to contribute to society. Our diagnosis should not define us, nor should we be ashamed of it.”


he Sherborne and District Dementia Action Alliance (SDDAA) seeks to ensure that Sherborne and the surrounding district is a community where people living with dementia are treated with respect and dignity, and are given as much independence as possible, while their carers are supported and enabled to enjoy a good quality of life. The SDDAA will do this by helping local shops, businesses and service providers to recognise the signs of dementia, understand how dementia can impact those who live with it, and make small changes that will help people living with dementia continue to be included in, and contribute to, the community. This will be achieved by developing a successful local alliance that feeds into the National Alliance and existing local care structures, including the local health and well-being organisations. SDDAA will identify and secure commitment from all key organisations across the town and district, to engage them in making Sherborne and the surrounding villages dementia friendly. SDDAA will ensure widespread access to the national DAA website to share information, good practice and to celebrate achievements. In delivering this project, SDDAA will involve people living with dementia and draw on their abilities and potential. It will seek to challenge stigma against those with dementia and to build understanding about the condition. It will promote organised activities that are specific and appropriate to the needs of people living with dementia and will ensure that the physical environments in which those activities are conducted are accessible and easy to navigate for them and their carers. SDDAA works with community-based organisations

and local businesses that support people living with dementia, whatever setting they live in. SDDAA’s current projects are: exploring opportunities for an Admiral Nursing service; developing links with Sherborne businesses and social organisations; providing Dementia Friends awareness sessions; co-operating with and supporting the Mayor’s Dementia Challenge for local businesses; and maintaining the ‘Safe Haven’ status of the Eastbury House residential home in Sherborne town with Dorset Police and the Alzheimer’s Society. The SDDAA was launched on 19th May 2015 in the beautiful and historic Sherborne Abbey. Michael Kay JP is the current Chairman of the SDDAA Steering Group, I am the SDDAA Co-ordinator and Margaret Cressey is the SDDAA Administration Officer. The Steering Group is made up of local people with backgrounds in Sherborne and district’s businesses, community volunteers, a Citizen’s Advice officer, Health and Social Care professionals, and the Chairmen of local Patient Participation Groups based in the three GP surgeries serving Sherborne and the local district. Becoming a member is not onerous and simply involves becoming familiar with dementia so that you are able to identify small changes that you can make in the way you serve or employ people that helps you become ‘dementia friendly’. For information and advice on how to become involved in the work and activities of the Sherborne Dementia Alliance please email us or visit our website. LK/10/18 | 135

Short Story



Julia Skelhorn, Sherborne Scribblers

hey sat, each with notebook and papers placed in front of them on the table. Seven ladies, awaiting the arrival of the eighth. ‘She’s got to go! She really has, and we should tell her this evening,’ the secretary began. ‘Our reputation is at stake. We can’t just ignore this.’ Nether Botting W.I. was holding an Extraordinary Committee Meeting and Freda Winthrop, their president, was unusually late. ‘I can’t imagine Freda taking this lightly,’ said the treasurer. ‘But I agree, we should deal with it immediately and not let things drag on.’ ‘I’ve just heard the door,’ whispered the secretary. ‘I think she’s here!’ Blustering in, all periwinkle blue cashmere and pearls, Freda plonked down on the only vacant chair at the table. ‘So sorry to be late ladies,’ she offered as she opened her notebook and took the cap off her Mont Blanc pen. ‘Cedric had to take an important call from the States. It looks as though we may have to go over to Florida for a golf tournament.’ In the absence of any comments from her colleagues, Freda then asked, ‘what is so important that we have to hold this extra meeting? I’ve quite enough going on at home without all this.’ The secretary and treasurer exchanged glances and eyebrows were raised round the table.

136 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

Freda was becoming flustered, her face puce and her pearls sitting on a rather damp neck. She was anxious to get home and sort out the Florida arrangements. The secretary cleared her throat. ‘We’ve received a letter from the County Chairman. I’m afraid I do need to read it out.’ ‘I can’t think what they’re writing to us about, but go ahead,’ said Freda, dabbing her brow. ‘It’s about the Spring Show,’ the secretary replied. ‘Well read it out then,’ Freda snapped. ‘Very well.’ ‘Dear Committee Members I am tasked with writing to you regarding a somewhat delicate matter. You will remember that we held a very successful Spring show this year, with an overwhelming number of entries for the competition to find the best ‘Edwardian Lady’s Breakfast Tray’. Amongst the ten items to be included on the tray was a small flower arrangement. I regret having to report that, prior to judging, your President, Mrs Freda Winthrop, was seen removing a rose from the arrangement of Puddle-Compton’s entry and adding it to that of Nether Botting. Mrs Winthrop had earlier been observed enjoying one tipple (or maybe two) too many at the Chairman’s reception, which may have contributed to her despicable behaviour. Obviously, this is quite unacceptable to the County Federation and I am sure, will cause great embarrassment to your W.I. We would ask that, as Committee Members of Nether Botting, you raise the issue as soon as possible at an Extraordinary Meeting and ask Mrs Winthrop for an explanation. The outcome of your discussions should be communicated to me in writing, not later than seven days following that meeting. I look forward to hearing from you. The atmosphere in the room was tense. Freda’s colour faded from puce to a ghostly white and her neatly cut fringe clung limply to her clammy forehead. ‘Do you have anything to say in your defence, Freda?’ broached the secretary. Freda fiddled with her embroidered handkerchief. ‘I don’t know what all the fuss is about,’ she said in a wobbly voice. ‘A little misdemeanour when one is a bit tiddly can surely be forgiven? Everyone knows it’s not in my nature to cheat.’ But her committee members were determined not to give in. Freda, now riled at not receiving their support, threw a tantrum. Heaving herself up, she grabbed her notebook and pen and, with handbag over arm, announced ‘That’s definitely it! I’m resigning NOW – right this minute, and you can sort yourselves out with a new president.’ Rummaging in her handbag for her mobile, she added, ‘I don’t want a lift home, thank you Melissa; I’m ringing Cedric – he’ll come and collect me. I’ll wait at the gate for him’. Leaning against the gatepost Freda endeavoured to pull herself together before Cedric arrived. Opening the car door, he said cheerily as she climbed in, ‘Are they staying for a natter then? I thought you had a lift home old girl?’ ‘No Cedric, I’ve resigned,’ she said, sniffing loudly. ‘So they can jolly well get on with it – I’ve done my bit.’ Freda didn’t dare tell him the reason for her resignation. Cedric was Captain at the Golf Club and news travelled fast. Illustration: alison1414 | 137

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LITERARY REVIEW Jonathan Stones, Sherborne Literary Society

The Shepherd’s Hut by Tim Winton (Picador, 2018) £14.99 hardback Sherborne Times Reader Offer Price of £13.99 at Winstone’s Books ‘But when you do right, Jaxie, when you make good – well, then you are an instrument of God. Then you are joined to the divine, to the life force, to life itself. That’s what I hope for, and what I have missed.’ In an arid, dead-end township in Western Australia, Jaxie Claxton, the narrator of this novel, is the brutalised fifteen-year-old product of a violently abusive marriage. His mother, who has long since given up on her seemingly semi-feral child, succumbs to cancer and, when his alcoholic monster of a father falls victim to a bizarre accident, Jaxie, innocent of but assuming that he will be blamed for his father’s death, heads out into the wilderness of the western Australian desert armed only with a shotgun, an inadequate supply of water, a few tins of food and a fiercely inarticulate sense of longing and self-belief. Jaxie is heading three hundred miles to the north, to the town where lives the only human being with whom he has thus far found any understanding, his female cousin. On the way there, Jaxie arrives unexpectedly at the shepherd’s hut of the title, an isolated broken down shack on the edge of a vast salt lake inhabited by one of the most original characters in all contemporary fiction - an elderly, disgraced, Irish priest named Finton MacGillis. (In these times it is probably necessary to add that the cause of Finton’s banishment, though never specified, turns out to be financial.) Jaxie’s often violently expressed wariness and hostility towards

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Finton gradually gives way to a grudging understanding and, as often when we are in the hands of great writing, with understanding comes transformative empathy as they both reach for a form of redemption through each other. Winton explores the big themes of faith and salvation through the absorbing relationship between this oddest of odd couples and against the searing backdrop of the great salt lake. But, while their unlikely friendship slowly grows, they remain unaware that human evil is sitting alongside them in the savage beauty of this barren arcadia and, once awoken, will hurtle towards them with malevolent force at the final, shocking climax of the novel. In his evocation of landscape as an inherent aspect of the Australian national psyche and an inevitable influence on character and narrative, Winton reveals himself again as the worthy heir to his great predecessor, Patrick White. Those who are already aware of Winton’s writing from his previous novels such as Cloud Street will not be disappointed. This is an amazing book; the language, which is expressed in the first person throughout by Jaxie, is forcefully uncompromising, and is bound to cause offence to some, however those who allow themselves to be swept up instead into the fierce pull of the narrative by this master Australian writer are in for a rich reward.

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Adrian Bright, Sherborne Community Church

ome weeks ago Yvonne and I had the privilege of holidaying with friends in Snowdonia, an area that holds happy memories for us. One memory is climbing the mountain Moel-Y-Gest. I say mountain though compared to many in Snowdonia, it is just a large hill. It rises from the shore line making the 261.4 m climb a mountain for all abilities, and the view from the summit spectacular. A number of years ago we climbed this mountain with our young niece and nephew. The entire climb took around 3 hours. Returning 20 years later I thought it would be nice once again to climb Moel-Y-Gest, convincing all that it would still be an easy climb, well within our capabilities we agreed to set off on our venture. The weather was idyllic, visibility excellent, and with rain not forecast until early evening we started our ascent. Initially climbing was easy on a well-defined path. One hour into the climb the route became harder to pick out, footpath signs no longer in place, farm gates across the path often padlocked and stiles no longer found. We pressed on up the now almost obliterated route, knowing that the last few hundred metres would involve climbing through dense bracken and brambles before reaching the rocky scramble that led to the top. After battling through we reached the summit. The view was truly stunning and certainly worth the effort. Contemplating our descent we decided to take the shorter, more direct route, reasoning that the path would be clearly marked and defined. How wrong we were. Descending, our journey became almost impossible. The path nowhere to be seen, we were now in large swathes of brambles and bracken, much being over five feet in height. We struggled on using our walking poles to cut through this jungle. Eventually with rain starting to fall we reached the bottom. What should have been a walk in the park had taken us six hours. Why do I tell you this story? It reminds me of a passage in the bible where Jesus states that many folk allow the cares and worries of life to overwhelm them just like the brambles and bracken that we encountered. For so many folk their cares and worries become the sole focus in life. Focusing on the problem prevents you seeing the solution. Unable to see the solution restricts your ability to see the answer. Without the answer you become totally overwhelmed and self-focused. As a Christian, the adventurer Bear Grylls says that when the going gets tough and everything seems to overwhelm him, he reminds himself of this Scripture. “I lift my eyes to the mountains, where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the maker of Heaven and earth.” (Psalm 121) What he has learnt to do in times of trouble is look up and away from the very thing that is dragging him down, and whatever the outcome to put his faith and trust in the God of creation, knowing He has said; “He will never leave you or forsake you.” Looking up you focus on the solution, focusing on the solution lets you see the answer. As Christians we believe the answer to whatever we face in life is Jesus Christ.

140 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

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ACROSS 1. Period of ten years (6) 4. Done in stages (6) 9. River in South America (7) 10. Cornmeal (7) 11. Folded back part of a coat (5) 12. Adult human female (5) 14. Large public gardens (5) 15. Debate in a heated manner (5) 17/ Gave out playing cards (5) 18. All together (2,5) 20. Soft metallic element (7) 21. Machine that creates motion (6) 22. Measure of electrical current (6)

DOWN 1. Dribbles (6) 2. Excerpt from a newspaper (8) 3. Waggish (5) 5. Small valleys (7) 6. Total spread of a bridge (4) 7. Keep hold of (6) 8. David ___ : novel by Charles Dickens (11) 13. Periodical publication (8) 14. Retirement income (7) 15. Strongly opposed (6) 16. Obstruct (6) 17. Single piece of information (5) 19. Dynasty in China (4) | 141



David Birley

his year’s Remembrance Day marks the hundredth anniversary of the Armistice and will, I am sure, be a major event in all our villages, towns and cities, perhaps none more so than Sherborne where we mark such occasions so well. Many of our shops have interesting and detailed window displays to mark the event and the two-minute silence on the 11th is widely observed in many places including Waitrose. Sadly, not all traffic stops as it used to. The Abbey is always packed for the Remembrance Service and the regimental banners are a poignant reminder of the sacrifices of previous generations. The First World War was described as, ‘the war to end all wars’. Unfortunately, this has proved to be far from the case as the monthly For the Fallen service so aptly demonstrates. Driving through northern France one cannot fail to be moved by the mass cemeteries with their serried ranks of headstones. Not far from Soissons in the forest of Compiègne in Picardy is the Carrefour D’Armistice where there is a very good museum which not only shows weapons and uniforms but also a selection of photographs illustrating what life in the trenches was like. There you can also see the two railway carriages used for the signing of the Armistice which show where the opposing leaders sat. It is, I think, a sobering thought to consider the carnage that had been ordered by these men. Many of us will have seen the excellent production of Simon Morpurgo’s War Horse in the Abbey which painted such a vivid picture of the conflict. Perhaps no name is more synonymous with the horrors of The Great War than Ypres, which was the scene of three major battles. The second battle saw the first German mass use of mustard gas but even the horrors of that pale into insignificance when compared to the third battle, also known as Passchendaele. This lasted 103 days and the allies sustained 320,000 casualties. In August it rained on every day except three and the torrential rain turned the landscape into a bleak quagmire of stinking mud which swallowed up men, horses and even tanks. The Menin Gate is the memorial dedicated to those British and Commonwealth soldiers who were killed in the Ypres Salient and whose graves are unknown. The Last Post is sounded every day at 8pm and it is a most moving ceremony. This year there will be a special Remembrance Concert in the Abbey at 7.30pm on 10th November. It will feature the Sherborne Chamber Choir under the leadership of Paul Ellis and tickets are available from the Tourist Information Centre. I strongly urge you to support this event. Please also support the Royal British Legion’s poppy appeal. The funds it generates play a vital role in helping to provide financial, social and emotional help to members and veterans of the British Armed Forces, their families and dependents. Let us never forget all those who gave their tomorrow for our today.

142 | Sherborne Times | November 2018

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Sherborne Times November 2018  

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Sherborne Times November 2018  

Featuring Liberty Fields, What's On, Family, Shopping Guide, Wild Dorset, Family, Art, History, Architecture, Interiors, Antiques, Gardening...