Page 1



A REKINDLING with Sherborne Prep Forest School


he spot was as wild as the centre of a thick wood. In this snug retreat sat a duck on her nest, watching for her young brood to hatch; she was beginning to get tired of her task, for the little ones were a long time coming out of their shells, and she seldom had any visitors. The other ducks liked much better to swim about in the river than to climb the slippery banks, and sit under a burdock leaf, to have a gossip with her. At length one shell cracked, and then another, and from each egg came a living creature that lifted its head and cried, “Peep, peep.” “Quack, quack,” said the mother, and then they all quacked as well as they could, and looked about them on every side at the large green leaves. Their mother allowed them to look as much as they liked, because green is good for the eyes. “How large the world is,” said the young ducks, when they found how much more room they now had than while they were inside the egg-shell.

'The Ugly Duckling', Hans Christian Andersen (1843)

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

James Hull The Rusty Pig Company @TheRustyPigCompany

David Birley

Colin Lambert

Elisabeth Bletsoe Sherborne Museum @SherborneMuseum

Lucy Lewis Dorset Mind @DorsetMind

Richard Bromell ASFAV Charterhouse Auctioneers and Valuers @CharterhouseAV

Mark Lewis Symonds & Sampson @symsam

Mike Burks The Gardens Group @TheGardensGroup

Gemma Loader MRCVS Kingston Veterinary Group @TheKingstonVets

Cindy Chant Sherborne Walks @sherbornewalks

Sasha Matkevich The Green Restaurant @greensherborne

Gillian M Constable DWT Sherborne Group @DorsetWildlife

Millie Neville-Jones

David Copp Jemma Dempsey Rebecca de Pelet Sherborne School @SherborneSchool Jenny Dickinson Dear to Me Studio, Fine Stationery @DearToMeStudio Jimmy Flynn Milborne Port Computers @MPortComputers Andrew Fort B.A. (Econ.) CFPcm Chartered MCSI APFS Fort Financial Planning

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 | January 2019

Andy Foster Raise Architects @raisearchitects Jean Fox Sherborne Literary Society @SherborneLitSoc Paul Gammage & Anita Light EweMove Sherborne @ewemoveyeovil Annie Gent Sherborne Preparatory School @Sherborneprep Craig Hardaker Communifit Andy Hastie Cinematheque Sue Hawkett Weldmar Trust @Weldmar Joanna Hazelton MARH RHom The London Road Clinic @56londonroad Sarah Hitch The Sanctuary Beauty Rooms @SanctuaryDorset

Paul Newman @paulnewmanart Mark Newton-Clarke MA VetMB PhD MRCVS Newton Clarke Veterinary Partnership @swanhousevet Kitty Oakshott Upstairs Downstairs Interiors @updowninteriors Simon Partridge SPFit @spfitsherborne Mike Riley Riley’s Cycles @rileyscycles Dr Tim Robinson MB BS MSc MRCGP DRCOG MFHom Glencairn House Clinic Julia Skelhorn Sherborne Scribblers Paul Stickland Black Shed Flowers @NaughtyDinosaur Val Stones @valstones Sarah Talbot Sarah Talbot Garden Design @STGardenDesign Martin Thompson MA(RCA) Steven Treharne Mogers Drewett Solicitors @mogersdrewett Sally Welbourn Dorset Wildlife Trust @DorsetWildlife Wayne Winstone Winstone’s Books @winstonebooks

64 8

What’s On

16 Film 20 Shopping Guide 22 Wild Dorset 26 Family 38 Architecture 40 Art 42 History 46 Antiques 48 Interiors

JANUARY 2018 56 Gardening

118 Tech


120 Directory

72 Food & Drink 82 Animal Care 88 Cycling 90 Body & Mind 106 Property 114 Legal 117 Finance

122 Folk Tales 124 Community 125 Out and About 126 Short Story 128 Literature 129 Crossword 130 Pause for Thought | 5

Electric goes Audi. The fully electric e-tron SUV is coming soon to Yeovil Audi.

Arriving March 2019. Register your interest at: or call 01935 574981

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

01935 574981


Images are shown for illustration purposes only. Manufacturer’s figures. May not reflect real world driving – actual range may vary as a result of driving mode and style, additional electricity using equipment, load/number of passengers, outside temperature, terrain and other factors. Official EU range figure not yet available.

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 | January 2019

JANUARY 2019 Listings

Support Group

Wednesday 9th 7.30pm


The Shielings, The Avenue, DT9 3AJ.

Sherborne Artslink Flicks -

chat. 01935 601499 or 01935 816321

Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Rd.

reading aloud with a small & friendly

Fridays 2pm from Waitrose

£12 (please book). 01935 815341


Free, friendly walk around Sherborne.

Mondays 2pm-3.30pm ‘Feel Better with a Book’ group Sherborne Library, Hound St. Shared

Advice, relaxed atmosphere, coffee & a

The Children Act (12A)


Tickets £6 from TIC, pre-film supper

group. Free. 01935 812683

Sherborne Health Walks

Last Monday of month 5pm-6pm

07825 691508



____________________________ Thursday 10th 7.30pm Sherborne & District

Sherborne Library, Hound St.

Gardeners’ Association -


Digby Hall, Hound St. A Castle

A lively book discussion group

Low Maintenance Gardening Gardens talk. 01935 389375

____________________________ Thursday 10th 8pm Sherborne Historical 1st & 3rd Tuesday of

Society - The Titanic -

every month 6pm-8pm

Dispelling the Myths

Dorset Mind -

Digby Hall, Hound St. Talk by

Tim Maltin. Non-members £5

Sherborne Wellbeing Group Costa Coffee, Cheap Street.


support-groups/ (Read our monthly article

Tuesday 1st 2pm

Friday 11th 7.30pm

New Year’s Day Guided Walk

Sherborne Science Cafe Egg Race


with Blue Badge Guide Cindy

Raleigh Hall, Digby Rd.

from Dorset Mind on page 96)

From Sherborne Abbey porch.

No need to book! £8, 01935 815341

each month 9.30am Netwalking From Sherborne Barbers, Cheap St. Free


(Read Cindy's monthly article on page 44)

Monday 14th 9.30am-3.30pm


West Country Embroiderers -

Saturday 5th 2.30pm

Bring Your Own Unfinished Project

BVYNT Association Talk -

Digby Hall, Hound Street. No tutor.

Brunel’s Ships First Thursday of

Digby Hall, Hound St, DT9 3AA. Talk by Philip Unwin. £5 (members £3) to

New members very welcome. Details: Ann 01963 34696


include tea & biscuits. 01935 425383.

Wednesday 16th


The Wildlife of a Working Forest

Sherborne Group of DWT Talk -

walk & talk with other small business

Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Rd. Talk

Sherborne Instagram: yourtimecoaching

owners & entrepreneurs. FB: Netwalk Twitter @yt_coaching

by Mike Read. £2.50. 01935 872742,



Wednesday 16th 2.30pm

First Thursday of

Sherborne WI Talk -

each month 2pm-3.30pm

C & J’s Glass Collection

“My Time” Carers’

Catholic Church Hall, Westbury, DT9 | 9

WHAT'S ON 3EL. Talk by Chris Randell & raffle. £4

Sherborne Historical Society -

including refreshments

Exeter Cathedral -


The Early Years

Thursday 17th 2pm

Digby Hall, Hound St. Talk by Professor

Sherborne Museum Talk -

Please share your recommendations and contacts via FaceBook @sherborneparents

'Three Dorset Captains at the Battle of Trafalgar'

Sarah Hamilton. Non-members £5


Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Rd. Talk

Friday 25th 7pm

Supper Quiz Night

Friday 18th 12.30pm

by Roger Cleverly. £5 non-members.

Friends of the Yeaman Hospital


Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Rd.

Abbey Launch - 'The Bells


of Sherborne Abbey' Book

Friday 25th 7pm-9pm

South Choir & Ambulatory.

Dorset & Somerset Yoga


All welcome.

Teachers Support Group

Wednesdays 1pm-3pm

Friday 18th 7pm


The Hen House -

Sherborne Literary Society Talk -

Mums & Tots Group

The Pevsner Buildings of Dorset

West End Hall.

Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Rd


TIC, Winstone’s or on the door


£1 coffee/tea & chatter!

Every Friday 9.30am-11am

Talk by Michael Hill. Tickets £10 from ____________________________

Bishops Caundle

Wednesday 23rd 7.30pm

Toddler Group

Sherborne Science Cafe -

All Saints Primary School

Brain Rhythms: From Speed


of Thought to Alzheimer’s

Sunday 27th 10am-4pm

1st Saturday of the month

Disease & Novichok



Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Rd

Angels of Sound Voice Playshop



Divine Union Soundbath

group for playgroup & primary age

Thursday 24th 7.30pm

Oborne Village Hall, DT9 4LA. £12 per

Sticky Church Cheap Street Church Hall. Free children. Info: 01963 251747

Floral Demonstration -


The World is Your Oyster

Tuesday 15th January -

Catholic Hall, Westbury DT9 3EL.

Tuesday 12th February

Demonstration by Amy Shakeshaft.

session 01935 389655


Info: 01935 813316

Planning ahead



Baby Signing Basics

Thursday 24th 7.30pm

Friday 1st February 11.30am

St Paul’s Church Hall, St Paul’s

Jazz Tribute to Oscar Peterson

Weldmar’s Snowdrop

Close, DT9 4DU.

Services of Remembrance

littlesignerssherborne 07513 148082

Tindall Recital Hall, Sherborne School

Tickets £10 - 01935 812249 tickets@

Roman Catholic Church of the Sacred


Heart & Saint Aldhelm, Westbury. Hosted by Sherborne Churches

11.15am-12pm 5-week Course -


Thursday 24th 8pm 10 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Together. 01305 215305,


(starting mid-January)


Wheelwright Studios, Thornford

Workshops & classes

NEW Watercolour Classes Info: 07742 888302


Fairs & markets

Wednesday 9.30am-10.30am


& 10.45am-11.45am Gentle Yoga Flow

3rd Sunday of the month

West Down Farm, Corton Denham.

Sunday Morning Hatha Yoga

for all levels & all acoustic instruments


____________________________ 9am-11am

508277 Suitable

07983 100445


Refresh Movement, 6 Trent Court, Trent.

Wednesdays 12pm-1pm

beginners. £10 booking essential. Info:

Upstairs Digby Memorial Hall. All


to book. or

Thursdays & Saturdays


The Parade

Followed by tea & advice. Suitable for

Lunchtime Hatha Yoga or 07817 624081

levels & abilities welcome. £5. No need

Mondays 9.30am-10.30am Dynamic Yoga Flow

07817 624081

Chetnole Village Hall . 07983 100445

Pannier Market ____________________________

Thursdays 9am-11.30am


Country Market


Church Hall, Digby Road

Yoga with Emma


Venues - Sherborne, Milborne Port,

Every third Friday 9am-1pm

Thornford. Info: emmayogateacher@ or

Farmers’ Market Cheap Street


Thursdays 2.30pm-4pm

Mondays 10.30am-12pm

ArtsLink Parkinson’s Dance

Saturday 19th 8.30am (trade)

(resuming on 7th)

Tinney’s Lane Youth Centre, Sherborne.

9.30am (public) until 4pm

experiencing the symptoms of Parkinson’s

& Collectables Fair

01935 815899

Entrance £1. 01963 370986

Yoga with Gemma Longburton Village Hall. 07812 593314 or

____________________________ Mondays 6.30pm-7.30pm


Class with movements designed for those

Chasty Cottage Antiques

& social time. Free - donations welcome.

Digby Hall, Hound Street



Yoga & Kunda Dance

Thursdays 7pm-9.30pm

Yetminster Sports Club. 07983 100445 ____________________________

DT9 6QE. With Ali Cockrean. £15 per

Sundays 9am

inc). 07742 888302, alicockrean@gmail.

From Riley's Cycles. 20-30 miles,


bike recommended. FB Digby Etape

Art Club@Thornford for Adults


No 1 Wheelwright Studios, Thornford


Tuesdays 10am–1pm

session (tuition only) or £20 (materials

Digby Etape Cycling Club Ride

com or

average 12-15 mph. Drop bar road

Chetnole Art Group Drawing & painting classes with

Laurence Belbin. Suitable for beginners & more advanced: Individual tuition. £137

Sunday 20th 1.30pm-4.30pm


Digby Memorial Hall, Digby Road, DT9

for 13 week term. Info: 01935 872256

Sherborne Folk Band Workshop

Tuesdays, Wednesdays & Fridays

3NL. 07527

Sherborne Cycling Club or 07443 490442 ____________________________ Tuesdays & Thursdays 7.30pm–8.30pm | 11

WHAT'S ON Mixed Touch Rugby

Saturday 19th

Saturday 5th

Sherborne School floodlit astroturf,

Chard (A)

Grove (H)

welcome. £2 per session, first four sessions

Saturday 26th

Saturday 19th

Radstock (A)

Yeovil (A)



Ottery Lane DT9 6EE. Novices very free. 07887 800803

Saturday 26th Swindon College OD (H) ____________________________ To include your event in our FREE listings please email details – date/

Sherborne Town FC


First XI Toolstation Western League

contact (in approx 20 words) – by

Division 1. Terrace Playing Fields,

the 5th of each preceding month to

DT9 5NS. 3pm start

Sherborne RFC

Saturday 5th

The Terrace Playing Fields, DT9 5NS

First XV Southern Counties South. 2.15pm start

Cheddar (H) Due to the volume of events received we are regrettably unable to acknowledge or include them all.


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

12 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra   / Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts

Every Wednesday at 7.30pm Join the BSO and a host of international talent and superlative programmes for what promises to be an outstanding season of concerts at Lighthouse, Poole’s Centre for the Arts this season. 01202 280000

 | 13

PREVIEW In association with

Jonny Fluffypunk: How I Came To Be Where I Never Was Tuesday 5th February 8pm The Sheaf of Arrows, Melbury Osmond, DT2 0NL. 01935 83004

Wednesday 6th February 8pm Wednesday 13th February 8pm The Blackmore Vale Inn, Marnhull, DT10 1JJ. 01258 820701

The White Horse, Stourpaine, DT11 8TA. 01258 453535

How do you find yourself when you find yourself where you don’t

lo-fi stand-up spoken word performance for anyone who has

reaches of outer suburbia. In 1984, he was fifteen. This is a story

love, or just been alive. This energetic and engaging piece fuses

belong? Jonny Fluffypunk grew up in the far-flung, forgotten

about being the first punk in the village and the only trainspotter in eyeliner; about unrequited love and youth club and John Peel and the forgotten gods of small record shops; about

making your own myth and letting go and a million everyday life-changing moments in the back end of nowhere. This is a 14 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

listened to late-night radio under the bedcovers, or fallen in

elements of theatre, storytelling, comedy, stand-up poetry (think John Cooper-Clarke not John Keats) and even a bit of ukulele!

ARTIST AT WORK No. 3: A Confluence of Waters, Paul Newman, £425


y work is a response to walking and trying to understand certain locations, i.e. what turns landscape into ‘place’? The more I discover about a place, the more I’m fascinated by it. As well as walking, I am intrigued by the elements that constitute the spirit of a place - what Paul Nash referred to as the Genius Loci - be it geology, natural history and processes, seasonal changes and sometimes traces of human interference. I only work with graphite and am fascinated by the texture and surface of natural forms and the process of reproducing these by hand. Walking is one way of observing but I also like to gain further understanding through studying maps, reading about the natural world and delving into poetry. While walking, a raven’s call, the murmur of a river, or noticing the changes in a patch of wood through the year can all provide

moments of inspiration and seeds for potential ideas. A Confluence of Waters takes its name from the poem Dart by Alice Oswald. I had walked many times on Dartmoor but Dart enabled me to think differently about the river, its unique voice and the change it undergoes from source to estuary. In particular, this piece is a response to the meeting of the East and West Dart and the way the waters merge, how the character and energy of the river is suddenly transformed at this point. Reading the poem made me go back to the river and see it differently, producing something that was more abstracted and patterned. It also led to a wild swim there a couple of summers ago, wanting to experience the river in a different way, and the planting of new ideas. | 15



Andy Hastie, Cinematheque


wo more excellent Cinematheque films are coming up next month at Yeovil’s Swan Theatre. On the 6th February we show The Red Turtle, a collaboration between the French production studio, The Wild Bunch, and Japanese animation geniuses, Studio Ghibli. With a 30-strong team of animators, the story of a man shipwrecked on an island is told through a visual narrative with sound but no dialogue, in the manner of a long, beautiful, moving painting. Man’s relationship and place within nature is explored with considerable emotional effect and the connection between man and animal is key to the theme of ‘the circle of life’. Although a simple story, profound issues are drawn out by delicate symbolism and gorgeous animation, creating a fusion between Eastern and Western traditions and Japanese and European cultures. This is definitely a film to be discussed afterwards! On 20th February we show a road trip film with a difference. And what a treat it is! Faces Places is an encounter between two imaginative minds. The then 88-yearold director, Agnes Varda, has been an irrepressible legend of French cinema for over 60 years, since her beginnings in the French New Wave, and is, as she admits, ‘a princess of the margins of French film culture.’ Her work is now rightly being heralded in a long overdue recognition of female filmmakers from earlier generations. Her collaborator and companion here is 33-year-old photographer and street artist, JR. This unlikely pair travel around the French countryside in JR’s camera-shaped van, with the shared passion of photographing people who, in their own words ‘are not represented.’ These aren’t just ordinary photos though. The prints are blown up to billboard poster-size and plastered on the sides of buildings, train carriages, barns and shipping containers. These giant images, although being modern, facilitate a sense of community, affirming traditional lives at the same time. Agnes Varda demonstrates respect for human dignity and oozes playful fun, kindness and empathy for the people she meets. Do go to You Tube and watch the official trailer for this film. It will undoubtedly whet your appetite to find out more about this remarkable and talented lady. Just a final reminder of the two films showing in January: Wonderstruck on the 2nd, and Isle of Dogs on the 23rd. Something for everyone here as usual! Check our website for details.

16 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

The Red Turtle (2017)

Faces Places (2017) | 17





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

I�'� ���� f��

��LE Fantastic clothes bargains

We would love to see you


O1935 814O27

18 | Sherborne Times | January 2019


O13O5 265223

WISHING OUR CUSTOMERS A HAPPY AND PROSPEROUS 2019 As a well established TV and radio shop, Godden & Curtis have been offering a wide range of audio visual sales and repair services for over 47 years. Established in 1968 as a radio and black and white TV shop in Newland, we moved our business to our current premises on Greenhill in 1972. We have continued to deliver the high standard of service that our business was built on.

Greenhill, Sherborne, DT9 4EW Tel: 01935 813451


Shopping Guide

Mouse lamp £75 Circus

Tom Dixon Melt table lamp in copper, £450 Partners in Design

Bent wood desk lamp £175 Timber Millers

SHINE A LIGHT Jenny Dickinson, Dear to Me Studio Brighten up these gloomy winter nights with Sherborne’s array of fantastic lamps. 20 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Retro table lamp £35 Artichoke

Brass pendant £78 Melbury Gallery African shield lamp £177 House of Lamps

Glass table lamp £120 Melbury Gallery

Goose lamp £95 Upstairs Downstairs | 21

Wild Dorset

FLOCK TO POOLE HARBOUR Sally Welbourn, Dorset Wildlife Trust


anuary is traditionally a dark and dismal month but for over-wintering birds it is a busy time of year, and Poole Harbour is one place we can guarantee will be bursting with (bird) life. During late summer and autumn, birds start arriving back onto the Brownsea Island lagoon to over-winter. The unique location of the lagoon means it provides shelter and food sources in abundance, but its shallow waters mean it’s still accessible for birds when the rest of the harbour is under deeper water. It’s also a thoroughfare for birds flying from far-flung corners of the globe, who use the lagoon to rest and eat before migrating to other winter habitats. In the past we’ve recorded rare sightings of the semi-palmated sandpiper and, in October, we were treated to a sighting of the small sanderling visiting from its arctic breeding grounds. A favourite and frequent visitor to the lagoon is the spoonbill. For many years the spoonbill flock sizes have been building; in 2017 it peaked to the largest flock of spoonbills ever seen in Britain, with 75 birds in Poole Harbour, and 50 on Brownsea Island lagoon. Other frequent and easily identifiable guests are large flocks of waders, particularly avocets, which are distinguishable by their long blue legs and curved bill, perfect for sifting through the mud for fish. They breed in East Anglia, France and Germany but the number seen on the Brownsea lagoon is of international importance, where 22 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

image: Paul Williams

1,200 or more can be seen in the winter. The black-tailed godwit breed in Iceland but can be seen throughout the year on Brownsea Island, with up to 2,500 visiting in the winter to feed on worms found in the lagoon.

FACTS: • An estimated 20,000 birds visit Poole Harbour each year. • Numbers of avocet and black-tailed godwits can exceed 2,000. • Spoonbills are named after their spatula-like bill which helps them to fish. Their bills also have tiny sensors on them which can detect prey by the tiny vibrations they produce.

A unique partnership between Dorset Wildlife Trust, RSPB and the National Trust has been set up to run boat trips around Poole Harbour during the winter months, so visitors can get a first-hand experience of the thousands of birds feeding and roosting on the Brownsea Island lagoon, when the rest of the island is closed for winter. Tickets start from £25 and trips run on 6th, 10th and 20th January and 3rd February. To book, call 0344 2491895 or visit the National Trust website.


Wild Year

Turn over a new leaf and help support Dorset’s wildlife and wild places in 2019. Join Dorset Wildlife Trust today.

DORSET WILDLIFE TRUST Photo © Damian Garcia | 23

Wild Dorset

Image: Mike Read



Gillian M Constable, Dorset Wildlife Trust Sherborne Group Committee Member

n Wednesday 16th January the Sherborne DWT group will meet in the Digby Memorial Hall. Doors open at 7pm for drinks and nibbles (for a small contribution) and conversation, with the meeting starting at 7.30pm. Our speaker is Mike Read who has been a nature photographer for 30 years - the photo of a Dartford warbler is one of Mike’s. His talk is entitled Wildlife in a Working Forest. He lives on the western edge of the New Forest and has published several photographic books about it. The forest and its traditional farming are under immense pressure from the huge number of visitors each year. Come and discover the forest’s extraordinary range of wildlife with its many rarities. I have recently been reading about one of the botanical specialities of the New Forest, the wild gladiolus. In Peter Marren’s recent book, Chasing the Ghost, he describes his search for the last 50 botanical species he ‘needs’ to see in order to have seen all the native flora of Britain in flower. The New Forest is the only place where this gladiolus grows in Britain and, with help, he did manage to see a few in flower, although 24 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

he wondered how much longer they would survive. I am sure Mike will be including their story. Post the Christmas break, you might be thinking about some outdoors exercise. DWT, RSPB and Dorset Butterfly Conservation (DBC) always have some volunteer work available. Have a look at their websites for information and contact details. Patrick, my other half, used to do some winter clearance work with DBC and would return with a healthy glow, grinning from ear-toear and smelling of bonfires, having had a lovely day out. A three-year research project reported in The Times on 26th November has shown that planting banks of wild flowers in field margins could increase the yield of certain crops by as much as 40%. The wild flowers attracted bees which in turn pollinated the crop and hence increased yield. An agronomist is reported as saying that having more flowers attracted more bees to the centre of fields. How wonderful if the result were to be extended to all crops.

UNDERSTANDING YOUR LONG TERM CARE OPTIONS Having to search for the best quality care in the right setting is something few of us will have experience of – until a loved one needs us to. With costs varying widely, depending on the type of care and level of support required, it is little wonder the whole process can feel somewhat daunting and overwhelming. With the average annual cost of residential care continuing to increase year on year, selling property to meet care costs looms large for many. Given the choice, no one would opt to see all their hard-earned assets, built up over a lifetime, depleted by the payment of care fees. Getting the right advice at the right time can make all the difference, providing you with peace of mind at a time when you need it most. Contact us for further information.

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. H2SJP30345 10/18

@elizabethwatsonillustrations 26 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Scholarships and Awards available FORTHCOMING

SCHOLARSHIP MORNING Saturday 2nd February 2019 For more information please contact the Registrar, Charlotte Carty

01935 810911 or

Open Morning Saturday 9th February 9.30am - 11.30am A co-educational day and boarding school from 2-13

‘‘It is possible to go and do anything after coming here.’’

Minibus routes available


t. 01747 857914 | | e. | 27



tudents Ruby and Theo both have a passion for boxing which has seen them already experience success despite their young age. Theo has been boxing since he could walk, with both sides of his family having a proud tradition of boxing, he’s always had a love for the sport. He has been training at Yeovil Amateur Boxing Club for over 8 years, and trains almost every day. His training is a mix of sparring and general fitness, and he has recently been competing at boxing shows in front of audiences. Theo’s dedication is paying off and he has won his last three fights in a row. His next challenge will be the School Boys’ National Championship in February. Theo has his eyes set firmly on representing GB in the Olympics and winning a gold medal in the future. Student Ruby is also a keen boxer, who has been boxing since she was 7 years old. Having been introduced to boxing through a family friend who coaches the sport, Ruby now trains three times a week at Sturminster Newton Amateur Boxing Club. When she’s not boxing, she’s busy at football training and playing for three different teams at weekends! Ruby recently had success at The Lord Lonsdale Amateur Box Cup winning her age/weight category and also winning Best Female Boxer. Ruby says she loves boxing because it’s a great way to keep fit as well as being fun, and she has made some great friends at her club. She has already earmarked the 2024 Olympics as her goal, with a professional boxing career afterwards.

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

28 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Children’s Book Review


Wayne Winstone, Winstone’s Books

You Are Awesome: Find Your Confidence and Dare to be Brilliant at (Almost) Anything by Matthew Syed, (Wren & Rook 2018) £9.99 Sherborne Times Reader Offer Price of £8.99 at Winstone’s Books


anuary is the season for bundles of New Year, New You books for adults but few for children and fewer that are actually readable and good fun. We have a welcome exception. Table tennis champion Matthew Syed offers his very best advice on how all children can help themselves to become better at anything they turn their hand to. Divided up into stories, visuals, charts and brief inspirational messages, Matthew Syed is inspiring and uplifting as he addresses his readers. He stresses the importance of creating a confident mindset and argues that, armed with self-belief, anyone can achieve amazing things both mentally and physically. A book to browse and revisit again and again for the useful ways it exhorts and coaxes all readers to make the best of themselves. ‘If you are a bit nervous or unsure of trying new things then I think you should read this book and it will help you to try and be awesome!’ Ethan Watkin, aged 10

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

Awesomeness and brilliance abound




Millie Neville-Jones

e so often associate January with the ‘January Blues’ and only anticipate what ‘Blue Monday’ (the 3rd Monday in January) will hold for us all - not the best day at work/school, eating only the healthiest foods, perhaps a celery juice? And dreaming of your pre-Christmas body; but in fact, we’re dreaming of our Christmas and New Year indulgences. Just because Christmas is over does not mean there is any less of a reason to be joyful or happy. Here are some reasons why January is arguably one of the best months of the year and one we need to learn to love: A New Start: January gives a real chance to set ourselves goals for the year. There is no excuse! Everyone around you has set a New Year’s Resolution - maybe to get that particular grade in their GCSE’s/A-Levels, to try for that new job, exercise everyday or perhaps someone is focussing on the small things in life, maybe to wear a matching pair of socks everyday? It is easy to believe when looking at our social media that you need to reinvent yourself; however, then the resolutions become harder to achieve. Make sure when coming up with your New Year’s Resolution that you make it true to you - and most importantly fun! People’s Birthdays: Oh yes, just because everyone is lead to believe that all celebrations are strictly over. That is not the case! We all have a friend that has their birthday in January, and sadly for them everyone is doing ‘Dry January’ and thus, a night-out is now not an option for 50% of your friendship group. Remember, just because their birthday is after Christmas, this is not the time to off-load all of your unwanted Christmas gifts onto them. Instead, look forward to these celebrations and cherish them. The New Winter Colours: It’s a time to look around. So often, we spend more time looking at our phones than our surroundings - I am no exception. Living in the countryside I have been brought up looking at all the plants that pop up in the winter months. For me, a flower that is synonymous with January, is the snowdrop. Being a January baby myself, when I see a snowdrop I always know it’s nearing my birthday! The nature around us is starting to grow again, this means less time looking at our phones and more time appreciating the new plants we haven’t seen in a year. Changing of the Light: We all adore Christmas and the December month, but it gets dark so early! You arrive at work in the dark (even though it is the morning) and then leave in the dark - I mean, we may as well be in Sweden (they have roughly 7 hours of daylight in December). However, January marks the end to this. Each day there is a visible change and the days become longer. We can all agree we’re looking forward to a little more daylight. These are only a few reasons why January can be viewed as a positive month. A month to look ahead, use as a spring-board forward into the New Year and to start planning how you’re going to take over the world - your way.

30 | Sherborne Times | January 2019


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32 | Sherborne Times | January 2019


’ve done a value today!’ My proud 5 year old shouts behind him as he scoots home from school. As an English teacher, I spent a split second mortified at the language, followed swiftly by a glow of pride that my son, at this tender age, feels that to ‘do’ one of our school values is the epicentre of his day. This particular value turned out to be perseverance. ‘I ‘perserveranced’ in my handwriting and, look, now I can write!’ Values. We use the word freely in schools, they are the foundation of all schools but are they truly what holds a school together? To create a strong and stable community, values need to be shared and followed and instilling this in our young people must surely be of paramount importance. Writers such as Dahl and Palacio (both studied at Sherborne Prep) place great emphasis on ‘choosing kind’. Our children are reminded to be kind and indeed reveal kindnesses every day. Small acts of kindness go a long way and we nurture children to develop healthy and positive habits, the more they do something, the deeper it becomes part of their makeup. If our children are to succeed in their future lives, remembering to be kind and celebrating kindness will see them well on their way. This does not mean that they should be push-overs or shrinking violets, pandering to everyone else. I would say with confidence that our children are certainly not either of these! Yes we want good citizens who are generous of spirit, kind in their endeavours and honest in their approach to all they do, but we also want them to have resilience and strength in their convictions. Our ever-changing world (the children keep up much better than us adults with all that is altering) means that for children to thrive, they must have independence to be able to solve problems, to manage tricky situations that they will inevitably encounter and bounce back from failures. Nobody swims through life effortlessly, it takes grit and determination – the ability to keep getting back up, and we need to embed this in our children’s psyche while they are young and in a safe environment so that when they leave for their senior schools they know how to fall and brush themselves off and always strive to be the best they can be. If we encourage our children to follow our values when they are young, they will have the firm building blocks to becoming aware citizens who can accomplish much, be quietly proud and lead the way forward in a world where character and the ability to collaborate are paramount. At Sherborne Prep we endeavour to live daily through our core values and we watch with pride as our young people move on as confident, interesting and interested individuals who hold community at their heart. | 33


Geoffrey Chaucer as a Pilgrim 34 | Sherborne Times | January 2019



Rebecca de Pelet, Head of English, Sherborne School


anuary is a month I have mixed feelings about, not least because of ‘the New Year’s Eve Party’ which feels as though it should be something to enjoy (after all, what’s not to like about seeing friends and watching Jools Holland’s Hootennany?) but which all too often ends up being something I want to escape from (too much booze and shaming resolutions anyone?). Canvassing views from the members of my creative writing society about their experiences of New Year’s Eve, the pupils fell into two distinct groups: those desperate for their parents to give them a lift to a party and those left alone at home while their parents go to one. Happy days. I do wonder if part of the problem is I somehow feel obliged to thrust the past year behind me and vigorously embrace the new, accompanied by a range of self-determined promises that I will be cleverer, thinner and somehow more successful. I think it just feels all a bit too dualistic for me. I’ve recently finished teaching Chaucer’s The Merchant’s Tale to my A level class. Reading Middle English out loud can pose a challenge to pupils, although once they get the hang of pronouncing every syllable whilst imitating the Swedish chef from The Muppets, they are well away. It’s the imaginative leap required in conjuring Chaucer’s world that is often much trickier. Even the most liberal pupil sometimes struggles to believe that things were simultaneously that pious and that fleshy. Teenagers often prefer things to be either one thing or another, not both. For a generation keen to avoid the restraints of the binary in their personal lives, they often prefer them in their literary texts. But Chaucer was interested in this idea of both. His tale stars January, an ageing knight who fears, on the surface at least, that he is heading for Hell unless he cleans up his act. At sixty, he decides to marry the very much younger May and thus embarks on the path to holiness and even to an heir. The Tale’s narrator, a jaded, woebegone merchant makes it clear to us however, that what January really wants is sex on tap. But condemning the old rogue is not Chaucer’s sole purpose and nor it

seems is congratulating the sharp-eyed teller of the tale. He instead steers a complex course which leads us to sympathise with the former and mistrust the latter. In other words, things are neither one thing nor another, but both. January’s name signifies his age with its connotations of hoary frost. But it also nods to the Roman god Janus who simultaneously faces both backwards to the now-dead year and forwards to the new, which is why his month is traditionally known as the gate of the year. Thinking about gates reminded me of Seamus Heaney’s poem Field of Vision where he compares looking deep into the face of a wise, old woman to being like facing a ‘well-braced gate’, since both draw you ‘deeper…than you expected’. Thus, instead of the gate of the year being something to dread, with its focus on casting off the old year (and its failings) in favour of the new (which will apparently be full of nothing but self-improvement), perhaps I might lean on its bars awhile and consider the past and probable highs and lows of both. Patricia Highsmith’s 1964 thriller, The Two Faces of January, updates Chaucer’s tale, exploring the relationship of a similarly ill-matched pair: the older, alcoholic Macfarland and his much younger wife, Colette. Their duplicitous shenanigans in Greece end badly but, rather than moralising about such relationships, both Highsmith and Chaucer lay the blame on the hypocrisy of their times. For Chaucer certainly, it lies with his society’s notions of chivalry and of marriage rather than wholly with either the randy old January or the social-climbing young May; in the end the two are both victim and perpetrator. And this is perhaps the point. I can celebrate the start of Janus’ month by rejecting the dreaded division of old and new, and think about both instead, with a clear eye to their respective gains and their losses. This means I’ll have to be a bit mediaeval too. After all, the very best in this world is about being both, not either/or; both rigorous and kind, both innocent and wise, both pious and fleshy. | 35

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ow quickly can you design my new house? Does my restaurant need a platform lift? Do you think permission will be granted for a new access drive? What size do the joists need to be? Why do I need an airtightness test? How much will my swimming pool cost? What do you mean, we’ve got to wait until June to complete the bat surveys? Do you know any good landscape designers? Can I demolish a listed building? How shall I pay the builder? This is a small snapshot of the questions that I’ve 38 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

been asked in the last few days. It’s fairly typical. You might think I spend my time designing buildings and, in a way, I do, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m constantly sketching new ideas. Quite a bit of my time is spent simply trying to help make things happen, with the best possible outcomes. Fortunately, I was able to provide answers to all of those practical, day-to-day questions. Interestingly though, all of the answers came as a result of my experience. None of the answers came as a result of my

five years of training at architecture school. That doesn’t mean that I don’t value architectural education. I do. It’s just that, although architecture students spend so much time at university, what they learn is just a starting point. For those starting work for the first time, it can be surprising how much new knowledge is required and how many new skills need to be developed. Learning in the early stages is hampered by the fact that those who do know things, don’t necessarily know how best

to pass on that knowledge to the inexperienced. And there is a further paradox in that most skills can only be explained in terms understandable to those already versed in those skills. For the beginner, there comes a point when you have to put any feelings of inadequacy to one side, and just have a go. You give your first attempt everything you’ve got, only to find that it’s not quite as good as you wanted it to be. But you start to discover what you don’t know and what you need to work on. And you start to see things differently. It takes time, patience and considerable resilience to develop new knowledge and new skills across a broad front. It also requires the right opportunities at the right time, with access to help and support when needed and the internal motivation to keep wanting more. I work with early career architects all the time and I want to ensure that they develop their practical knowledge and skills quickly. This is obviously good for business but it’s also good for them. As part of the training opportunities that we provide, I decided to start writing things down and making things a bit more structured. This has led me to develop a website so that I could share the information in a blog and newsletter. It’s early days, having only launched in November, but I’m starting 2019 with an ambition to help as much as I can. My target audience is the early career architects that are part of the team at Raise Architects. But in writing to help them, I’m convinced that the blog will also be relevant to a much wider group including their peers, other architects in my position and anyone with a general interest in how architecture actually happens. If you know any early career architects that might be interested, please pass this on. Or if you are contemplating a project yourself and want to understand more of what goes on, please have a look and let me know if you have any questions. I’m a beginner when it comes to blogging and any feedback will be appreciated. I need all the help I can get! ‘Considering the number of books on the theory and practice of architecture already published, any further effort to illustrate and familiarise this MOST NOBLE ART, may seem superfluous and unnecessary.’ William Pain, The Practical Builder, 1774 | 39


40 | Sherborne Times | January 2019



hen Ali Cockrean and I joined forces last year to deliver art tuition to a wider audience, we both agreed that it’s fear that holds most students back from fulfilling their true creative potential. This is particularly true when it comes to using watercolour. By its very nature, watercolour can be a difficult beast to tame. The flow of paint and water can be uncontrollable and crazy, moving around the paper like a piece of performance art. But with a little organisation, a bit of understanding, a dash of technique and a lot of experimentation, fluid, richly-coloured brushstrokes and cascading wet washes produce effects which no other paints can match. Where other paints lumber, watercolours prance. Watercolour is the most unpredictable and yet the most rewarding of all painting techniques. Even splashing around on a scrap of paper or on the back of a ‘failure’ invariably produces something interesting and uninhibited. Watercolour comes alive when it’s allowed out to play. And painting with watercolour gets more exciting the more water you use. Let yourself lose control and a whole new world will open up. Paint will wander off in its own direction and do strange and wonderful things when it meets more wet paint. Abstract fractals grow and gentle rainbow gradients of colour surprise and delight. Herein lies the magic. Pictures often ‘work’ when they surprise us. When an image remains ambiguous enough to trigger the imagination to do the work of the eye, the imagination completes the picture far more effectively than any brushstroke. The inherent quality of watercolour is in itself so lovely, that the eye delights in leading the mind through a beautifully random roadmap of colour. This is why a rapidly executed watercolour thrills with its immediacy, energy and boldness. Watercolour is not for the fainthearted. Once painted, mistakes are difficult to correct and watercolour always does what it wants. It insists you are deliberate and makes you take risks. In this respect watercolour is more about attitude than technique. It favours the bold. Painting in watercolour is good exercise for your courage muscle.

Remember when you were learning to ride a bike? You’d been told the rules and what to do, but you just couldn’t make it work? Then you found your courage muscle, lifted your feet off the ground onto the pedals and you were off ! Painting with watercolour is a similar leap of faith. The secret is to find the balance between control and letting go. Too much water is just as useless as too little. One will drown the colour and effect, the other will prevent the magic. You have to develop a feel for it. With practise and experimentation you’ll quickly learn the capabilities of your brush. You’ll discover that it can both apply paint and remove it. You’ll discover how to control back runs and washes. You will harness and control the beast. The modern world has seen the ubiquity of the camera and the endless possibilities of image processing damage the credibility of photography. We are drowning in a sea of disposable digital imagery. Instead of looking at the world, we look to the empty calories of Google. Because of this, drawing, painting and art is now enjoying a resurgence in popularity. The genuine article is back in demand and for good reason. A carefully observed drawing or painting links your hand, your eye and your mind. You gain access to the moment. The here and now. The voices in your head will quieten and you will be looking at stuff and starting to see. And recording it with your mark. Artistic endeavours can be incredibly therapeutic. Research is revealing benefits that encompass mental health, emotional development and improved quality of life. Watercolours will guide you to new places and teach you new lessons. Experiment with them, play with them, take risks, break rules and make a mess. Whatever you produce, your watercolour is a document of the action of the human hand operating through time. Your hand. Your time. It is a subjective and intimate creative act that describes who you are and the way you see the world. It is real and beautiful and authentic. And something of great value. For details of Martin’s new Watercolour Classes in collaboration with Ali Cockrean please visit | 41


THE CAST IRON PANEL Elisabeth Bletsoe, Curator, Sherborne Museum


ne of the donations offered in 1968, the museum’s inaugural year, consists of two cast-iron panels, 61cm x 31cm, painted an attractive heritage green and featuring a stylised foliate design. Recorded information from the donor indicates they were from the former public conveniences in Pageant Gardens. These types of structures, intended to appeal to middle-class sensibilities, mushroomed in the Victorian and Edwardian eras as public health became an issue. Composed of both open and solid panels, they were highly decorative and some boasted glass roofs or intricately wrought domes. Cast-iron urinals are today appreciated as historic items, with many given a Grade II listing. A survey by the Heritage Group in 2006 discovered a number in existence across the country, with several still in use. They suggested that most were designed by one of five firms from Glasgow; our panels, however, are identical in design to those found in the urinal preserved at Colyford Station of the Seaton Tramway in Devon, probably produced by Lockerbie and Wilkinson. Established in 1876 in Birmingham, they are still extant as “Locwil”, and are specialists in architectural ironmongery as well as inventors of the original “spend a penny” locks for lavatory doors. Research into our photographic archive reveals the existence of a similar structure on the down platform of Sherborne station from c. 1903 to at least 1928. Earlier public toilets, in the former Town Hall, Hound Street and Digby Road had been controversial in terms of their location and matters of hygiene. In February 1923, The Western Gazette reported that a new building ‘being contemplated’ was to be iron with 42 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

a glass roof situated in Pageant Gardens near the gates on the South Street side but, even before it was fully erected, proffered the hope that eventually the town’s conveniences would be more central, perhaps ‘underground’ in Half Moon Street. By March, the paper was complaining: ‘It can scarcely be considered a credit to a progressive authority at 12 feet by 9 feet and contrived to provide accommodation for both ladies and gents. The restricted nature can be imagined from these dimensions. For this beautiful bit of architecture, the rate payers have the satisfaction of finding a sum of £250 to £300. At any rate the Council appear to be proud of it for they have hidden it away in a secluded corner of the Pageant Gardens.’ Nevertheless, by May 1923 the Urban District Council had appointed a woman to take charge of the new unisex lavatory at a wage of 8s a week. Other voices joined the wave of dissatisfaction. In July 1926 the Vicar of Sherborne, Canon Stephen Wingfield-Digby expressed his outrage to the UDC that atrocities had been committed on the sacred eminence of the Abbey building, that ‘nuisances’ had occurred ‘in the choir ambulatory and against the tower.’ He argued that the urinal in Pageant Gardens was so tucked away that ‘people might be excused for not being able to direct anyone to it.’ Eventually, complaints became so strong that Charles Bean, surveyor to the UDC, drew up plans for additional toilets in Digby Road and at the bottom of Bristol Road, the former of which is still in situ. Sherborne Museum will be closed throughout January for deep cleaning and conservation.



Neil Grenyer will be in the Sherborne area on Thursday 31st January 2019 to value your antiques To make an appointment please contact 01460 73041 or email COMPLETE HOUSE CONTENTS & ATTIC CLEARANCES ARRANGED PROFESSIONAL PROBATE VALUATIONS





Cindy Chant, Blue Badge Guide


y aim in these jottings is to give a very brief outline of the ways in which our very early roads, the early settlements and ways of communication have changed during the last thousand years. It is very misleading of me to use the word ‘road’ without some explanation. ‘Road’ nowadays to you and me means something with a hard and artificial surface, and early roads and tracks almost certainly had none of these features. What fascinates me about roads is that the layout of these ancient tracks must have been unlike anything with which we are familiar today, or for no other 44 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

reason that the distribution of the population was quite different and much more restricted. I think that it is now time that I made a visit to the Dorset History Centre in Dorchester in order to research this fascinating subject. Across the Blackmore Vale, the state of the roads varied according to the local geology and in the vales of Blackmore, deep, winding lanes are the main features. Their age is almost impossible to know but centuries of almost constant use by human feet, horses and the hooves of cattle and sheep, and natural erosion, leave many as sunken lanes or hollow-ways. These are deeply embedded into the landscape.

A most interesting and impressive holloway near to Sherborne is Bradford Hollow, which runs south east from Yeovil Bridge to Tilly’s Hill. Clearly this was the old route from the Bridge to Bradford Abbas. Another nearby track, very modernised, is now part of the road from the Bridge to Bradford Abbas via Babylon Hill. During the Civil War 1642–1660, there was a skirmish here and Sherborne Royalists fell. Most travellers made their way on horseback and all goods were transported by lines of heavily-laden pack horses. Eventually, four-wheeled road wagons, heavy and cumbersome added to the deteriorating conditions, and of course, many numbers of horses were required to haul them. Six, eight, or even ten were common, so the effect on the tracks can only be imagined, and it was especially worse in the wet weather, and guess what? Here in Dorset, it rains a lot! It must have been a nightmare! Some sort of legislation was introduced in the 16th Century to try to improve the upkeep of these tracks. A statute in 1555 required all parishes to be made liable for the upkeep of the routes that passed through their area of responsibility. Able bodied paupers were often used as a labour force, but of course they were paid a pittance for their efforts. One interesting thought is how in those old days, long before any road maps were used, and when very few people could read, did people find their way around? It is doubtful whether sign posts or finger posts go back further than the Restoration, and they did not become common until the days of the turnpike and the coaching era. (I will write much more on all that in further jottings – be patient and keep reading). But so much reliance must have been made on various landmarks, like clumps of trees, or a large hill, or bridges, and there were many of those. So, let me now mention ‘Red Posts’ and ‘White Posts’. Most posts in Dorset are white, but there are four red posts that remain in use and two are in the Sherborne area. One on the road from Sherborne to Wincanton in the parish of Poyntington at the turning that goes to Corton Denham. One west of Evershot at Grey Cross, and one, now the largest, on the road to Cerne Abbas, at the turning to Up Cerne. Even today, the adjacent hillside is called Red Post Hill, but this post disappeared many years ago. It has been suggested that these posts mark the site of very early markets where goods might have been bartered but I think that the colour red was to do with direction-finding. Another theory is that travellers, who certainly could not read, would have been told to change directions (or to

get off a coach) at the red post. The most popular theory is that Red Posts mark the site of the gibbet from the days when highway men were hanged on roadside gallows as a warning to others, or that they mark the site of a suicide or that they were markers for the illiterate guards who were taking prisoners to Poole or Portsmouth where the ships known as ‘Hulks’ were waiting to transport the many prisoners out to the new lands of Australia and Tasmania, or they could just be boundary-markers. When I was studying for my Blue Badge exams, we were told that Red Posts were boundary markers. I really don’t know, but they are cherished road furniture, part of our heritage and provide a historic line from the past to our modern way of life. I must now of course mention bridges, the crossings of the many rivers. The most valuable indications of the existence of the old roads are the river crossings of all kinds. Most bridges were the responsibility of the parish in which they were situated. I think that these bridges are one of the most pleasant features of the Dorset scenery, with many fitting artistically well into the landscape. One example of a lovely old bridge shown on the map is Cornford Bridge, near Holwell. The presence of an ancient bridge like this, capable of carrying wheeled traffic, is proof that old roads must have run to it and from it. The majority of bridges however are much smaller, since most of mediaeval traffic was equine and horses could cross reasonable depths of water fairly easily, provided the bottom was firm. Footbridges or causeways and – in some places where severe flooding occurred – small strong stone bridges were built. These were named “Pack Horse Bridges” and are associated with fords. The best known nowadays is over the little river Develish, just east of Fifehead Neville, near to Sturminster Newton. There is a lovely little bridge with two pointed and buttressed arches. Another one was at Kings Stag, but sadly now destroyed. Another one is in Melbury Osmond and there is one in Purse Caundle. Great and Little Mohuns Bridges on the old Dorchester to Sherborne Road, Five Bridges on the Sherborne Causeway. There are of course several others elsewhere but these articles of mine are really focusing on our Sherborne area. Next month, I will concentrate on my favourite old route - Shaftesbury to Sherborne - the old road that we now know as the A30. | 45


IT’S A SIGN Richard Bromell ASFAV, Charterhouse Auctioneers


have always enjoyed a good film. Thrillers generally work for me over a chick flick (although Mrs B does force me to watch these every now and then), but I also like a jolly good laugh. A Monty Python film would certainly make it in my top 10 film list, with The Life of Brian being a particular favourite. At our salerooms, I am often found walking around the building quoting from films. Perhaps more often than I should admit to, I cannot help muttering, ‘It’s a sign, it’s a sign’ from The Life of Brian whenever I see one of the enamel advertising signs we have been storing for our January auction of automobilia items (apologies if you are not a Python fan or have never watched the film!). I do wish the signs could tell us their history. 46 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Where did they come from and how did they get to where they are today? Over the decades, many signs were discarded and viewed as having no commercial value. I once carried out a valuation for a client south of Bristol who had one of the largest signs I have seen, at well over 6 feet tall. I asked the owner where they got it from. They replied they found it in one of their barns where it had helped to make a wall. After being hidden away from direct sunlight and rain for years it was in super condition, having not faded or rusted, and it now takes pride of place in their kitchen where, rather than being a wall, it is a feature on the wall. With their bright and bold colours, it is easy to

understand their appeal, although I am probably biased as I have a few signs at home. However, they are not always found in the home; they are also found on display in garages, which is where some of the signs we are selling have been enjoyed for the past few years by the owner. Now looking for a new owner and wall to hang on, there are about 20 signs from this Devon barn going under the hammer. In all shapes and sizes there are familiar names including Mobil, Pratts and Castrol, but for me it is a BP sign which stands out. Featuring the Union Flag, this sign is over 5 feet wide with BP MOTOR SPIRIT in the centre. To me, it has just the

right amount of rust (or 'character' as auctioneers prefer to call it) giving it patina – if it had no damage or loss at all I would be quite suspicious. The enamel signs are to be sold in our two-day auction, 17th & 18th January, and, with Christmas probably a distant memory, I wonder if I can convince Mrs B to buy it for me as I seem to be banned from buying any more antiques. Maybe as an early birthday present or even as a wedding anniversary present, but I doubt I will have much luck with that…!

CHARTERHOUSE Auctioneers & Valuers We are now accepting entries for our forthcoming auctions: Maps, Pictures & Books Thursday 17th January Beswick, Automobilia & Antiques Friday 18th January Classic & Vintage Motorcycles Sunday 3rd February Classic & Vintage Cars Sunday 10th February Silver, Jewellery, Watches & Wine Thursday 14th February

BMW R80 over £10,000 spent on restoration

Contact Richard Bromell for advice and to arrange a home visit The Long Street Salerooms Sherborne DT9 3BS 01935 812277 | 47

@elizabethwatsonillustrations 48 | Sherborne Times | January 2019




Our Visofold doors open effortlessly, gliding on stainless steel rollers allowing unrestricted thoroughfares and the maximum use of space and light. The signature smooth contours and curved clean lines create an attractive aesthetic that will compliment any home, whatever your taste or style. Manufactured from our factory in Sherborne all of our aluminium products are available in whatever colour you wish.

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Kitty Oakshott, Upstairs Downstairs Interiors

andblock printing is one of the earliest, simplest and slowest forms of textile printing. Originating centuries ago in India, the distressed look created by block printing cannot be replicated by a machine. The design is first carved out of a wooden block, which is then covered with dye and pressed firmly onto the cloth, or paper. If the design is intricate, the carving process of the wooden block can in itself take 7-10 days. Each colour in the design has its own block, so each colour is put on separately, and a detailed and multicoloured design could use as many as 30 blocks! The process is slow and labour-intensive but produces beautiful results. The reminders that these designs have been printed 50 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

by hand add to their charm. No batch will ever be exactly the same. A small imperfection here, perhaps a ‘not dead straight line’ there, all add to their uniqueness and detail. Block prints look particularly good on cushions, quilts and lampshades, where they can make a feature out of a small space. Block print designs are colourful, creative and eclectic. They are warm and welcoming, and bring a touch of joy. They really are something to be admired, and allow you to appreciate them for the talented and time consuming work that goes into them. A labour of love. Block printing is something special and has stood the test of time. Welcome this style into your home!



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BACKWARDS AND FORWARDS Mike Burks, Director, Castle Gardens Group


ast January I rashly made some New Year’s resolutions for the garden thinking that no one would remember what I had set out to do, but some did so I had to give a mid-year update on progress. Luckily, I had carried out many of the tasks, like sowing and pricking out several plug plants for the wildflower lawn in our garden. Just before the driest summer for years, I planted wild pansy, ox eye daisies and some foxgloves which grew very well, and I hope they have seeded. After an absence of two years, I was also lucky enough to have another pyramid orchid appear, this time in the 58 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

opposite corner of the garden from the first plant. Throughout autumn I sowed some wildflower seeds including a quantity of yellow rattle, a parasitic plant, which will slow down the growth of the grasses and will accelerate the development of the wildflowers as a result. I also sowed red campion, greater knapweed and ragged robin, with the latter in the damp part of the garden. After reading that ground elder could be controlled by interplanting with calendula, I thought I’d experiment with planting tagetes, marigolds and calendulas amongst ground elder, and the result was interesting. In order

Image: Katharine Davies

to identify some variation, I also planted a group of about a dozen tagetes. In a separate spot I put some french marigolds and then, in a third patch, I used the calendula, leaving another patch of ground elder untouched to grow on its own. To say that I was dubious was an understatement, but I was wandering past one day and noticed that the patch of ground elder on its own was growing much better than those in the mixed planted areas. This pattern continued through the summer and then, as the weather turned in the autumn, it disappeared sooner in the planted patches

compared to where the ground elder was on its own. Now in scientific terms, this cannot be considered to be a controlled experiment and far more investigation is needed before proclamations can be made, a paper published and awards for services to humanity received but it was really quite interesting. In 2019 I’m going to duplicate what I did in 2018 and then use some different varieties of tagetes and marigolds. If anyone fancies carrying out their own trial and sharing their results, please let me know. For the cynical amongst you, this isn’t a method to drive up sales of summer bedding plants! Quite often in gardening there are some hard and fast rules that have been passed down through the generations without being questioned. Most of these will be good rules to follow but some are found to be unnecessary or wrong. Some of you may recall the debate about pruning roses to an outward facing bud, a centimetre above the bud, whereas nowadays they are often chopped hard back with a hedge trimmer with no side effects. Another in this group is the ritual of lifting dahlia tubers in the autumn, storing them in the shed over winter and replanting them in the spring on the assumption that they won’t survive the winter outside. With the relatively mild winters of late, most people now leave dahlias in the ground perhaps just with a covering of mulch to keep them snug and it seems to work just fine. I thought after last winter that this wouldn’t be the case, but it seems that most dahlias came through the winter quite happily. With this challenging the norm in mind, another resolution presented itself after I was discussing drying off bulbs, such as amaryllis, at a garden club the other day. A member of the audience said that they were completely unaware of that advice and that they kept their plant fully watered and looked after it all year round. It flowered beautifully every year without fail! I vowed to try it this year and guess what, my plants aren’t even budding up yet whereas bulbs that have been allowed a dormant period in the summer are just about to flower. However, my garden club friend will be right in what she does so I’m carrying on the experiment. I will be continuing with the normal mowing of the lawn, planting up pots and baskets, growing a bit of veg and generally pottering around. As I write at 4pm in early December it’s getting dark so I’m quite looking forward to getting on with my resolutions for the spring. | 59




Sarah Talbot, Garden Designer

t’s January and woolly jumpers, scarves and hats are the order of the day. Our gardens, however, are wonderfully bare, declaring a simple, wintry elegance with the promise of things yet to come. January is the ideal time to take stock and, with a critical eye, ask a few questions such as: Where are the gaps? Are there areas I don’t like in the winter? Do we lose our privacy when the leaves have fallen? Will there be anything in flower this month? So, although it’s about dealing with the now, it’s also about planning ahead. Just like humans, gardens need a framework to support them. It’s the horticultural equivalent of a skeleton, which underpins the colourful wardrobe they wear throughout the warmer months. At this time of year, we can see exactly where there’s a need for more structure and this is where the evergreens, in particular, really prove their worth. Those ‘not so interesting’ shrubs suddenly become winter sculptures, giving depth and intrigue and, when dusted with snow, appear breath-taking! Clipped Box makes a strong statement, especially when combined with soft summer plantings of Agapanthus, Penstemons, Gaura and Verbena; it’s that lovely contrast of the formal with the informal. Sadly, Box is under increasing attack from blight so future alternatives are wise. Pittosporum tenuifolium golf ball will make a good substitute for box balls, whilst ilex crenata is the best lookalike replacement for low box hedges and parterres. Even the humble and often mis-used Euonymus or lonicera nitida can earn their places if planted imaginatively and regularly clipped. Other pittosporums, nandina and many of the hebes will all give substance and structure. Lavender is perfect for a well-drained sunny spot; just be sure to cut it back as soon as it’s flowered, usually mid- to late-August, to prevent it becoming leggy. If you intersperse it with Alliums, Tulips, Alchemilla mollis and a few hardy Geraniums, you’ll create a simple, pretty border with a contemporary twist. So which plants will give you flowers now? One of my favourites is the scented Coronilla Glauca Citrina. Best against a warm, sheltered wall, mine is in a pot and has been in flower since early November. The real stars, however, are the Hellebores which are readily available in garden centres. They are stunningly beautiful, perfect for a shady corner and their evergreen foliage will make a good foil for other plants later in the year. Mix them with Epimediums and evergreen ferns such as Aspleniums or Polystichums, add some Snowdrops (best bought ‘in the green’) and some of the more refined Bergenias and you will have an enchanting, shady corner, full of flowers in the midst of winter. Taking regular, monthly photographs is an invaluable aide memoire for the year ahead. Try to include the basic planting principle of contrasting shape and texture with the visual rhythm of repeated key plants; our brains love this and respond well to it, all of which makes for a garden you will really enjoy!

60 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Image: Nick Stubbs | 61




Paul Stickland, Black Shed Flowers

appy New Year! It promises to be a very exciting one too! Writing this in December, I’m hoping that Helen, Tabitha and I will have had a bit of a break over the Christmas period. We certainly need it! So what will 2019 hold for Black Shed? First of all we need to expand, to take on another acre to allow us to increase production to meet the ever-increasing demand for fresh, local, seasonal flowers. It’s been wonderful to witness the excitement building amongst florists and the public alike at the availability of flowers that reflect the changing seasons, from plants that grow well in our slightly unpredictable and uncertain climate. After last Spring’s chill and this Summer’s extraordinary heatwave and with the promise of more in a similar vein, we’ve 62 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

had to do a lot of research into plants that can withstand such extremes. As members of Flowers From The Farm, we’ve been able to benefit from the experiences of other flower farmers. We share what works well and, as is invariably the case with gardeners and farmers, that knowledge is shared with great generosity. We’re increasing our tulip offering, they’re safely all tucked up in their beds waiting for the first warmth of Spring. The ranunculus are leafing up beautifully and we even have the odd anemone in flower. There isn’t really a pause in the flower farming year, there’s always the promise of Spring in the wings to encourage and keep us on task. In 2019 we’ll be growing even more perennials. We now have a good idea of which ones performed well in

the last two seasons and our stocks of these increased beautifully last summer. Perennials are clearly a lot less work than sowing and planting annuals each year, there will be visits to our favourite wholesale nurseries soon! One of the biggest demands we’ve had this year has been for foliage, such as eucalyptus. We grew ours from seed and in only 9 months we have plants over 6ft tall! We’ll coppice those hard down to the base and will definitely be growing more. Another excuse to revisit those wonderful, tempting seed catalogues… It’s not just the exotics that are in demand. The wild, green style of wedding, with copious amounts of foliage, are still all the rage, so there is a big demand for simple native foliage, such as beech, holly, oak and birch. Florists have foraged for this in the past but even in our leafy rural area, this is not so easy and you must have the permission of the landowner too. Imported foliage runs the risk of importing pathogens such as xyella, which we must avoid at all costs. Luckily, young trees, whips, are

cheap as chips, so we’ll be planting 100 metre long rows of these, coppiced to provide one, two and three year old stems. This should have the added benefit of providing habitat, shelter and food for the hundreds of species of insects and wildlife that depend on them. Plus it should look amazing! Last winter we purchased a selection of willow species. We have a boggy corner in our field, just right for these moisture lovers. The foot long unrooted cuttings arrived, beautifully wrapped and labelled in a simple paper package. Willows root very easily indeed. We did little more than poke them through our landscape fabric and we now have one year old trees over 9ft tall. We’ve even taken cuttings from these and now have a second generation of trees which will give us plenty of colourful stems for next year’s Christmas wreaths. We’re always looking ahead! paulstickland_ | 63

WILD THINGS Words Jo Denbury Photography Katharine Davies


t’s a cold, wet and grey day in January. The leaves have long-fallen and there’s mud everywhere. The last thing you might feel like doing is going outside but in this hidden corner of Sherborne woodland Forest School beckons. The often-used mantra is there’s no such thing as bad weather only inappropriate clothing. Dressed in boiler suits, waterproofs, hats and boots, this eager group of Sherborne Prep students make their way uphill to the woods beyond. Andy Treavett, a Level 3 Forest School Leader and Year 4 tutor, points out, ‘it’s conditions like these that provide our Children with the best challenges. It gives them a chance to develop core skills such as perseverance, resilience and teamwork.’ >

64 | Sherborne Times | January 2019 | 65

66 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Admittedly my own daughter’s fondest memory of Forest School at the prep was eating roasted marshmallows and making “S’mores” (melted marshmallow and chocolate sandwiched between two biscuits) but before you can enjoy the sweet, gooey delights of S’mores you need to build a fire. On a damp day like today this sets the children a challenge. Where will they find the dry kindling? Will the spark from the flint ignite the cotton wool? These are all problems that need to be solved. ‘Alone, a child might struggle,’ explains Andy. ‘But the children learn to work together to solve a problem in a way which builds on what they learn in a standard classroom environment.' ‘The point of a Forest School is that we can create a learner-led environment where the children choose what they do,’ Andy explains. Meanwhile the children, having successfully built their fire, are now hunting for sticks to whittle into skewers. Skewers are fashioned from green wood with beginners learning to whittle using potato peelers. As their confidence grows they will progress to using knives. Children taking Forest School as a Saturday morning club might progress to using a billhook.

In an era when regulations seem to stifle everything from climbing trees to playing conkers, this seems to me an ideal way to teach children the key skill of making their own risk assessments. I ask Andy why he thinks some parents are inclined to be so risk-averse. He suspects it’s probably because of the way things are reported in the media, but the reality might also be because as time-poor, preoccupied parents we need to know that our children are in safe hands. Before, a lot of these skills would have been passed down between generations – I remember learning to use an axe by watching my granddad in the garden splitting wood for the fire. But as families become more scattered, these basic skills are beginning to fade. Not that these children have time to worry about the subtleties of Family Science. They’re off on an adventure. ‘Often we make journey sticks on a walk in the woods,’ says Andy. ‘The idea is that the children attach interesting bits and pieces that they find and then talk about it at the end. They interpret it in all kinds of ways, sometimes it’s a “journey of their life” or another might describe it more literally. > | 67

68 | Sherborne Times | January 2019 | 69

70 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Other times they may choose a tree and talk about it. Some of them might see it as a “protector” to warn off evil spirits, others will talk about the weather or create a “green man” face and tell me about that. ‘What’s great is that the children begin to talk about what they have done which gives them important communication skills,’ he explains. As the afternoon light begins to dwindle, the children congregate to chat about their experiences. They have spotted new animal tracks and seen tiny birds in the trees. They talk about the Green Men they have made to protect their trees, they’ve built dens, a fire and enjoyed a hearty round of hot chocolate. Despite the weather there’s plenty of rosy, smiling faces. In an era when the average child can tell you more about the species native to the Amazon rain forests than their local wood, it’s a joy to see these children having so much fun acquiring knowledge.As Andy says, ‘out here the children often find a better way of learning something. It also gives me other skills and ideas to use in the classroom.’ I have a feeling that the children benefit too from the confidence acquired in regaining a little control over their world. Without the need to quantify or

validate their time here they are free to bathe in the nurturing harmony of the forest. When was the last time you lay in a wood and watched the sky through the trees or a small bird hop from branch to branch? Perhaps we could all benefit from a bit of Forest School. I know I could. Sherborne Prep Holiday Club Lower Covey Nursery Holiday Forest School for primary school aged children 01935 488215 Leweston Forest School 10am-11.30am each Thursday (term time only), for 0-5 year olds. 01963 210691 Pogles Wood Forest School during half terms and holidays | 71



Old School Gallery

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72 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

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Food and Drink THE CAKE WHISPERER Val Stones


Image: Katharine Davies 74 | Sherborne Times | January 2019


ou may be wondering what a ‘Ladies Cake’ is; it simply refers to when I became menopausal and started researching natural remedies to reduce the symptoms. I learned that soya could supply phytoestrogens, which could be used in oestrogen replacement therapy. So I developed a healthy cake recipe to suit my own tastes, including soya. I made it for my dad too as he had a heart condition and diabetes so the lack of eggs, fat and sugar were perfect for him. My dad called it ‘Bird Seed Cake.’ I would make him smile by saying ‘It won’t harm you Dad and your feathers will all be fluffed up and you will whistle better than Billy.’ Billy was my dad’s budgie. Dad ate the cake for breakfast with a tiny spread of butter, he never grew feathers but he had a lovely singing voice. This is vegan-friendly and can be made with glutenfree flour. I bake it in a 2lb loaf tin and cut it in half, eat half and freeze the other half. Preparation time 15 minutes, (mainly the weighing out of the ingredients). Fruits and seeds soaking time 30 minutes. Cooking time approximately 90 minutes. What You Will Need

2lb loaf tin greased or with a greaseproof liner Ingredients Serves 8-10

100g soya flour 100g wholemeal flour 100g rolled oats 100g golden linseed, blitz in a blender or a food processor to break up the seeds a little 50g sunflower seeds 50g pumpkin seeds 50g sesame seeds 50g ground almonds (optional, if you wish not to use nuts) 300g dried fruit e.g. sultanas, dried apricots, dried prunes 2 tablespoons sugar alternative (optional, the fruit provides natural sweetness) Tip - I use sukin gold, it is a natural brown sugar alternative based on stevia 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon 50g-100g finely chopped stem ginger, depending on your love of ginger

3 level teaspoons Dr Oetker’s baking powder (it is wheat-free) 425ml unsweetened soya milk Zest and juice of an unwaxed orange 1 tablespoon malt extract Method

1 Set the oven for 160C fan,180-190C, 350-375F, gas 4-5 2 Place all the dried ingredients in a large bowl 3 Whisk the malt extract into the soya milk then stir the soya milk mixture, stem ginger and orange zest and juice into the dry ingredients, mix well until all combined 4 Leave to soak for 30 minutes 5 Spoon the mixture into the loaf tin, even the surface with a spatula. Poke any sticking-out dried fruit back into the mixture with a cocktail stick or a skewer - that way you won’t have any over-baked fruit spoiling the top of your cake 6 Bake on the middle shelf for 90 minutes, check after 80 minutes. The cake is baked when a skewer comes out of the cake cleanly. Leave the cake in a little longer than 90 minutes if not baked 7 Remove the cake from the oven and leave to stand for 5 minutes then turn out onto a cooling rack 8 When cool, store in an airtight tin - it keeps well in the fridge for up to two weeks or freeze for two months 9 Cut thin slices, it can be eaten on its own or with a little soya spread. I would have a slice each morning as part of my breakfast (accompanied with a soya yoghurt and fresh fruit)

Val Stones: The Cake Whisperer is available now from @valcake.walks | 75

Food and Drink

MUD AND MARKETS James Hull, The Rusty Pig Company


knew it would come and it has... the rain and the mud. We shouldn’t complain, with an amazing run of fantastic weather this summer and autumn it’s all the more of a shock when the winter rains come. Outdoor pig farming in the winter is a time of head down, try and keep positive and keep counting the days until we are past the shortest day. Everything is so much harder and takes a lot more time and energy, it’s a battle to stay on your feet while carrying full feed bags, large groups of crazy pigs doing their very best to knock you over, the cloying mud sucking you down and sapping your energy. They will get the better of me I’m sure but at the time of writing I’m still on my feet! People say, ‘but I thought pigs like mud.’ Well they do when it’s boiling hot and they want to cool down but in the winter time I think they are quite like us, they like their cosy pig arks, plenty of straw to snuggle down in and I’m sure they are counting down too. A naughty pig update, well they are growing fast, so that’s good news and more mud means less exploring. I don’t want to speak too soon but they are being ever so slightly better behaved, as long as we still carry on feeding them first that is! Their autumn term school report would read ‘More effort required!’ As for the rest of the herd, no more piglets at the moment, all the little ones are now eating small creep pellets and growing well. We did lose a few to being squashed by their mothers, they were gilts so inexperienced mothers. The first two are ready for weaning but we have spent the last three and a half weeks without our Land Rover as the gearbox went while parked up overnight. Charlotte, being Swedish, would say, ‘What do you mean ‘went’?’ but I think that’s the expression we use. So when it returns we will be moving pigs around. This is our first year retailing our produce, we have been busy selling at local Christmas markets. When they go well, it’s a real buzz, we both enjoy selling our 76 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

bacon and sausages at these events. Our best purchase has been a tiny portable camping gas ring that we cook samples of bacon and sausages on for potential customers to taste. The smell of bacon wafting their way is hard to resist it seems - apart from me that is, I seem to get so in the moment that I can go all day and not touch a morsel of bacon or sausage. So we are learning every time we do an event, which ones never to try again, how much stock to process, how to weigh the gazebo down so that it doesn’t blow away, what sells best, where. It’s really lovely to meet a lot of discerning

Shutterstock/Nigel Akehurst

customers who appreciate our slow-grown products, We are so blessed in our area to have an abundance of fantastic foods, drinks and gifts all grown and made locally. Every producer with a unique story of how they got the idea for their business, their passion shining through, every time you buy from a local producer you are helping keep that dream alive. I think very few of us would want to be on Dragons’ Den, preferring instead to plough our own small unique furrows. So thank you to all the committees and groups who organise events, so that we can sell our wares. It’s also fantastic to see how it

brings life back to our towns - the Sherborne Christmas Festive Shopping Day was so well supported, a great day for us personally, we sold every single pack we brought (well Charlotte did, I was at home trying to fit a roller door with no instructions, but that’s another story!) By the time you read this, Christmas will have passed and so much of this produce will have been consumed. So thank you to everyone who has supported our fledgling business this year. | 77

Food & Drink


The hilltop town of Montalcino, famous for its brunello wine.



David Copp

return to the subject of Italian red wines because recent tastings have shown that they are getting better and better. The Italian geography and climate have always favoured the production of fine wine. The Alps in the north and the long thin spine of the Appenines provide sun-blessed slopes, mineral clay soils with excellent drainage. Barolo, Chianti and Montalcino are established as the greatest quality red wine regions but others are staking a claim not least those in the coastal area of Tuscany around Bolgheri. Puglia and Sicily have also recently proved their standing. It took Italy some time to get over the effects of the two world wars. For a long time her wines lacked any real focus, the appellation system was in disrepute and much of the production could best be described as ‘industrial.’ However, led by some of the leading Florentine Houses such as Antinori, Frescobaldi and Ricasoli, they began to make wines that demanded 78 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

serious attention. Generally referred to as ‘Super Tuscans’, the extra quality came as a result of more careful site selection in the classico, or central areas of the regions, from lower-yielding sangiovese vines, by blending them with cabernet sauvignon, cabernet franc and merlot, and by more precise use of wood in the maturation process. In Piedmont the same approach to selecting and developing nebbiolo, initiated by Angelo Gaja and his fellow leading growers, resulted in some stunning wines. While in Montalcino the Biondi Santi family recognised the potential of the soil and climate and developed sangiovese clones known as brunello. Wine enthusiasts around the world began to sit up and take notice. The best of these fine wines are not only outstanding they also match the prices of French Burgundy and claret. However, do not be put off because there are good wine merchants who will introduce you to excellent but

more modestly priced wines than the top growers can charge. However, if I may suggest to new enthusiasts for Italian wines, it is worthwhile seeking advice on vintages, which are not necessarily the same as in France. With nebbiolo in particular, vintages do make a difference. Whether you are starting or developing your interest in Italian wines, Waitrose current wine list is a good starting point because they offer an excellent range of Italian wines starting with their Full Rich Italian Red at £4.99 a bottle. I consider this to be one of the very best wine bargains in the UK because it represents the very soul of good Italian wine; warm, fruity and delightfully earthy. It is hardly surprising that the current Waitrose wine list should have such an excellent offering of Italian wines because their head wine buyer Pieropaulo Petrassi, the first Italian to become a Master of Wine, is a real enthusiast for the wines of his fatherland and is supported by an outstanding wine buying team,which has cultivated excellent relationships with the top Italian growers. They carry a wide selection of wines at each price level in all the best appellations. Barolo, Italy’s answer to pinot noir, comes from the nebbiolo grape grown in the Langhe hills of Piedmont near to Alba. Nebiolo can be a bit austere and tannic when young so look for a good vintage that has been in bottle for some time such as 2009, 2012 or 2015. It is always best to decant such wines an hour before drinking, to allow the wine to breathe some fresh air and dispel any fustiness. These are very classy red wines that age beautifully as do those of Barbaresco and Ghemme just to the north. Most good wine merchants have a carefully selected range of Chiantis, full-bodied sangiovese wines with up to 20% of foreign varieties such as little cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon and merlot to give them extra body and elegance, and make them such good partners for steak and grilled meats. I have known the Antinori family a very long time and have never ever had an indifferent bottle of wine under their label. They are one of the oldest wine firms (started in Florence in 1385) still in existence, still expanding their vinicultural interests in Italy and throughout the world. The business is now run by Piero Antinori’s three daughters who have all inherited their father’s passion for making fine wine. On a trekking holiday in Tuscany in 1993 I saw, from a high point, that the land around the old Abbey at Badia a Passignano had been cleared. It was the first time I had been in that part of Tuscany and had no

idea it belonged to Antinori. But I instinctively knew it would be planted to vines: it now produces some of Antinori's finest wine. This is what keeps the oldest and best of growers at the top of the trade. Piero Antinori has a reputation for recognising great vineyards when he sees them. The coastal area of Tuscany now given the appellation Maremma is the home of the original Super Tuscans, Sassicaia and Ornellaia. The region now includes many fine wines from around Bolgheiri, which was simply horse-riding land when I first went there. Marchese Incisa della Rocchetta planted cabernet with the help of the Bordelais on his private San Guido estate purely for his own domestic use. When Piero Antinori first tasted his uncle’s wine he wanted to sell it to his best restaurant customers and a star was born! Just a bit further south, Montalcino has also proved to be another remarkable wine region. It is a relatively small hilltop site which specialises in sangiovese known locally as brunello. Brunello di Montalcino is a remarkable, long lived wine with superb structure and gorgeous scents. This small and distinctive region owes a great deal to the Biondi Santi family who, like Antinori and Frescobaldi in Chianti, recognised the fine wine potential of the region. The best wines are expensive but if you really want to see what some of the best have to offer, save up for the treat. The more established regions have the considerable advantage of having had time to learn from their mistakes or omissions. Campania, the region around the Bay of Naples, used to be the preferred region for wines in the early days of the Roman Empire, when emperors and friends had nearby holiday villas. However, when Vesuvius overcame Pompeii, many of the best vineyards were destroyed and other regions took up the running. Don’t be surprised if Campania forces its way back into reckoning. Much the same might be said of Sicily, once called Greater Greece, which remains the largest island vineyard in the Mediterranean. The nero d’avola grape dominates. It produces a full bodied, robust wine and is planted extensively, from the long lingering slopes of Mount Etna whose volcanic soils add spice and vigour. Italy never fails to amaze me with the variety and quality of its finest wines. It is a huge wine-producing country and has an enormous number of indigenous grape varieties. Do not be put off, start at the bottom and if you like their style of winemaking you will find something to your taste. Perhaps several things! | 79

PAN-FRIED ENGLISH VEAL CHOPS WITH CAVOLO NERO, GARLIC AND PARMESAN Sasha Matkevich, Head Chef and Jack Smith, Junior Sous Chef, The Green


his one is great after a good exercise session. You will love the golden, crunchy crust on panfried veal chops served with the strong, bold flavours of garlic, rosemary, parmesan and full of goodness cavolo nero. Ingredients

6 rose veal chops (1 inch thick) 1tbsp rosemary leaves, finely chopped 2tbsp olive oil 1 lemon, juiced 1kg cavolo nero 80g unsalted butter 1tbsp extra virgin olive oil 1 red onion, finely chopped 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped 150g parmesan, finely grated Cornish sea salt and freshly ground black pepper Method

1 Wash cavolo nero in cold water, then drain and cut out the tough, white centre. Cook for 2 minutes in a large pan of salted water. Refresh under cold, 80 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Image: Clint Randall

Food and Drink

running water and drain well. 2 Rub veal chops with olive oil and chopped rosemary. 3 Preheat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large heavybased frying pan until it is really hot and you can see smoke rising from the pan. 4 Season the chops with generous amounts of salt and pepper. 5 Add the chops to the pan and fry for six minutes. 6 Turn over and cook for another four minutes on the other side and set aside to rest. Add the lemon juice to deglaze the pan. 7 In a separate pan, melt the butter with olive oil and add the chopped onion, garlic, sea salt and a generous pinch of black pepper. 8 Sweat gently for about 10 minutes until the onion is soft and translucent. 9 Add the cabbage and cook in the garlicky butter for 3 minutes. 10 Add parmesan and mix well. 11 Serve immediately with the chops, pan juices, and lemon wedges.













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Animal Care

CAUSE AND EFFECT Mark Newton-Clarke, MA VetMB PhD MRCVS, Newton Clarke Veterinary Surgeons


y winter articles have traditionally been peppered with advice about avoiding many of the various injuries that happen to dogs when snow or flood blight our lives. Like most of medicine, it’s mainly common sense. However, I would be doing an injustice to my profession if I didn’t say that years of training and experience are essential for not only ‘the big picture’ but to understand the often complicated interplay of different factors that co-exist in many patients that can produce a variety of symptoms. Our goal is to get as close to the truth about a case as possible, the ‘truth’ in this regard being a complete understanding of the patient’s problems, their cause and effects. It is this pursuit that occupies the mind of the clinician. One recent case we saw at Sherborne illustrates this quite well. A young Labrador called Monty was brought in to see me with a red and bulging eye. The owners had 82 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

just noticed it that morning and although Monty was almost as waggy as normal, he obviously had a problem. The interesting thing was Monty’s third eyelid (the protective membrane that can extend across the eye) was very prominent in his affected eye. The other side was normal. There was no evidence of trauma and Monty spent his days with his owners on their farm and was never very far away. So, what could be going on? We have a process that we follow when trying to establish a diagnosis and many of you will be familiar with your vet advising either x-rays, ultrasound or blood tests (or all three!) to gather more information. There is another strategy that we use regularly and it’s called pattern recognition. It simply means that we have seen the condition several times before and have a very good idea of the diagnosis. Although useful and satisfying for clinician and owner

Shutterstock/Claire Norman

alike, it has its limitations. Things are sometimes not what they seem at first sight. Anyway, I knew from experience that Monty had pressure behind his eyeball which was making it bulge a little and causing his third eyelid to slide across, partially covering the eye. In every case I have ever seen when this has happened suddenly, an infection behind the eye has been the cause. The bacteria causing the problem often introduced through a stick-chewing injury in the mouth (the roof of the mouth and the back of the eye are very close). Monty had been known to chew sticks on occasion and the penetration could have happened days or even weeks before his eye bulged. So, I confidently pronounced to Monty’s owners that I knew what the problem was and some antibiotics should do the trick. So off they go, tablets in hand with advice to return daily to monitor progress. I often take

photos to help monitor the progress of eye problems, amongst others, so I can demonstrate improvement more easily. Well, after three days Monty’s eye was really no better, although it was no worse and he seemed fine. No worries, I say to the owners, antibiotics often take longer to work, especially when they are trying to penetrate a recess like the space behind the eyeball. Just to be sure, though, we recommended an ultrasound scan of the eye. Everyone is familiar with pregnancy scans but perhaps an eyeball scan seems a little strange. It’s actually quite easy (providing the patient keeps still) and all it requires is some local anaesthetic to numb the surface of the eye and good dollops of coupling gel and patience. I saw what I expected, fluid behind the eye causing pressure. All good. Just to be sure to be sure, though, I asked our nurses to draw some of Monty’s blood to check for infection. Our nurses are adept at blood sampling and Monty was quite happy to have his ears stroked and his blood taken. Just a few minutes later, though, the nurses grabbed me out of the consult room to show me Monty’s leg from which the blood sample had been drawn. There was a big bruise. This happens occasionally if the patient wriggles but I was assured Monty was stock-still for the entire process. Oh-ho, something else was going on and we looked again at the ‘big picture’. Monty now had tiny red marks on his gums and on the white of his other eye. Ping! The light-bulb moment. The cause of Monty’s bulgy eye was not an infection but a blood clot as most probably he had a bleeding disorder. Taking blood had caused an unexplained bruise and he now had signs of bleeding in his gums. Luckily we had enough blood to send to our lab for a clotting test and this confirmed our suspicions. All very well but what was the cause? I was back on the phone to Monty’s owners and this time asked more questions about the farm. Sure enough, rat poison had been put down the week before and although hidden and in ‘safe’ containers, Monty had almost certainly found some to eat. This is the commonest toxicity we see in dogs, especially in those on farms but it can happen anywhere rat bait is used. Happily, there is an antidote (vitamin K) and Monty was duly dosed for several weeks, making a full recovery. His eye went back to normal after ten days as all his symptoms resolved.So, a successful outcome this time but I will add warfarin poisoning to my list of possible causes of bulgy eyes! A little bit more experience for both Monty and me to learn from. | 83

Animal Care


84 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

POISONOUS PLANTS AND TREES Gemma Loader BVet Med MRCVS, The Kingston Veterinary Group


here are numerous plants, weeds and trees which are toxic to livestock. Some cause mild to severe symptoms, whilst others can be fatal.


Oak: Ingestion of acorns from oak trees (quercus spp.) can cause serious problems. This occurs during the autumn months when the acorns are falling on grazing pastures. Acorns contain tannins which damage kidneys and will most likely result in death. Signs of acorn poisoning are often depression, anorexia and bloat due to the digestive system shutting down. Animals demonstrate constipation with associated straining initially then this progresses to a foul smelling, dark, bloody diarrhoea. There is no specific treatment and regardless of supportive care animals will usually die within a few days. Yew: Yew is highly toxic and will cause rapid death following ingestion. Signs that may be exhibited predeath are wobbliness, difficulty breathing, tremors and the animal collapsing. Although sudden death is seen most commonly and unfortunately there is no treatment. PLANTS

Ragwort: Ragwort is green in colour with bright yellow flowers and can grow up to 2 metres in height. It will cause a chronic illness following ingestion, which is usually through hay or silage rather than straight grazing. Individuals usually isolate themselves, become dull and depressed. There will be significant chronic weight loss noticed with diarrhoea, leading to jaundice and fluid accumulation under the jaw due to a failing liver. Once again there is no treatment for this complaint. Horses are more susceptible to the problem than farm livestock. Cattle are often more affected than sheep. Bracken: Commonly found in moorlands bracken

is a large fern plant where both acute and chronic presentations can occur when ingested. If young bracken shoots are ingested then livestock will die rapidly. Young shoots are much more palatable than older bracken but they are much more harmful and result in bone marrow abnormalities and clotting issues. Animals demonstrate signs of haemorrhaging from orifices (e.g. blood in urine or coming from nose), become weak, recumbent and die but on some occasions sudden death is apparent. The chronic form generally follows small intakes of bracken over a long period of time. Symptoms include progressive weight loss and tumours, especially of the bladder and gut. No treatment is available for either acute or chronic form. Water Hemlock: Water hemlocks typically grow in wet, marshy places and are often confused with nonpoisonous members of the family, such as wild carrots or parsnips, otherwise known as water dropwort/dead man’s fingers. They will appear to have clusters of small green and white flowers in an umbrella like shape and have a carrot-like smell. Cattle become exposed to this plant when it’s dry and the river banks are exposed due to low water level or following dredging of water courses. The most toxic part of this plant are the roots (which are said to resemble a dead man’s fingers). Typical symptoms of toxicity are dilated pupils, frothing at the mouth, difficulty breathing, tremors and violent convulsions. A high proportion of the animals will die, occasionally an animal may pull through but have a remaining diarrhoea for a period of time. As with most toxins, there is no specific treatment. If you would like to find out more about managing poisonous plants and trees on your land or if you think your livestock may be at risk, call Kingston Vets on 01935 813288. | 85



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Available Monday-Friday 8-6pm Saturday 8-12pm • Luxury grooming facilities • Heated kennels • OAP dog house stays (call for information) • Doggy play/exercise compound • CRB checked and fully insured • Doggy first aid (accredited CPD) • City & Guilds Level 3 qualified in dog grooming & dog behaviour • Day packages available • Dental hygiene and teeth cleaning • Puppy health checks

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A HISTORY OF MTBS Mike Riley, Riley’s Cycles


e listen to the radio in our workshop and afternoons on Radio 2 feature a mimic spoofing of Sir Paul McCartney; the surreal anecdotes suggest the Beatles invented bizarre things such as sandwiches. At the risk of sounding like that, here is an article on a subject we have not covered much before – mountain bikes. As 13-year-old lads in Hampshire, my chum Nigel and I would cycle miles to watch our heroes, Badger Goss and Wheely Wade, racing motorcycle scramblers. The new M27 road with a cycle bridge across it was being built near our homes and the building site provided a ready-made course for us to try out scrambling, however we lacked a bike. Mum was very clear I could not buy a BSA bantam scrambler a local lad was selling for £5, so we decided to make our own dirt tracker bicycle. The unknowing donor was Nigel’s big sister Jocelyn. All unnecessary items such as guards and baskets were removed but, on our first test ride of ‘Dirty’, the wheels buckled. Our shed contained an outgrown child’s bike with strong wheels; these were duly fitted, disregarding that the brakes would not fit, and we had a great time hurtling down grass banks from the newly built cycle bridge over the creek. After our fun dirt tracking, we rode home two up on the bike via the new cycle bridge. Unfortunately, the local Bobby spotted us two up on Dirty and stood in the path between the bollards at the end of the bridge with his hand up. As we hurtled down, I shouted, ‘no brakes!’ The PC was not amused as we halted with shoes smoking and we got a severe reprimand. So that was how we invented the mountain bike in 1970. Later in the 1970s an American called Joe Breeze is credited by Wikipedia as having built the first mountain bike, known as an MTB. Since then I’ve enjoyed occasional off-road riding until I rode with oldest son Matt just before he started university. On a rutted downhill track over Batcombe, Matt went over the handlebars and face-planted. Miles from a road with a damaged bike and no phone signal, poor Matt and I walked miles until I could contact a 88 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Image courtesy of Merida UK

friend. Chris took Matt straight to hospital but days later our dentist found a jaw fracture, which required a plate fitted at Taunton hospital. Matt spent Freshers Week at uni with his jaw wired closed and fed himself through a straw. This did not help him socially but it did keep his bar bill down! I felt so bad I could not enjoy off-road riding after that and stopped for several years. Mountain bikes have developed beyond recognition since Dirty and are technically advanced machines for different specialisations. Early MTBs had steel frames and only fat tyres for suspension. In contrast our younger son, Nathan, has a lightweight, carbonframed, full suspension bike which can cope with jumps and speed over rough terrain while still retaining control; this style is known as full suss. I am old-school but accept that front suspension can be a benefit. My Merida has an aluminium frame with adjustable front suspension; this style is called a hardtail. There are even bicycle equivalents of a Land Rover, with huge tyres,

called fat bikes. On a trade test day, I forgot my off-road skills were rusty and overconfidence caused a spectacular dismount with a somersault, a hard landing and a mangled front wheel. My aching body appreciated the plush ride of full suspension on the bike I was loaned to return to civilisation. Nathan, like many riders, enjoys the thrill of whizzing downhill just as I did in 1970 but, sensibly, he goes to bike parks where prepared routes have designated difficulty, such as ski runs. Riders can push their limits here and progress in a controlled manner. You know the saying, ‘What goes up must come down?’ The reverse is also true and going up by bicycle involves significant effort to earn your fun. The MTBs low gears help with climbing but it is still an effort. Bike parks often have uplifts which may be similar to a ski lift or an old pickup truck, however your expensive pride and joy can be at the bottom of a pile of bikes bouncing uphill. Technology has developed a solution for hills with electric-assisted eMTBs. One

dealer in Devon visits a local downhill run after work and the Merida brand rep told me his legs managed two climbs and downhill runs in an evening. When he tried the eMTB he managed more than 5 runs and stopped because of failing light, not tired legs. Although I have mentioned mishaps, off-road riding is very rewarding as it brings you close to nature. I recall a lovely evening cycling on the South Downs - as I cruised down a fire road at dusk, a deer loped alongside in the trees. One of our customers is an ex-snow boarder with worn out knees. He bought a Volt eMTB from us to ride around Portland and enjoyed it so much that his wife bought one as well. One day he brought the bike to me with a lot of grass sticking out and a mangled rear derailleur. Returning to the surreal theme, I was shocked when Brett explained he disturbed a badger and the animal chased him and bit the derailleur! | 89


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Body and Mind

A FRESH APPROACH Sarah Hitch, The Sanctuary Beauty Rooms



he New Year brings new ideas, plans and resolutions to improve ourselves inwardly and outwardly. A strong theme with these resolutions is to take more care of ourselves, be kinder and healthier. As we look at ourselves, heavy-eyed (and heavy-bodied!) from the indulgent festive lifestyle, there is a desire to look better and fresher in our skin. One of the skin’s main functions is to act as a barrier to the outside world; when this barrier isn’t looked after properly it shows in our complexion. A skin-care routine needn’t be a cumbersome load saddled about your neck and weighing down your bathroom cabinet. It should be a realistic process for you. There are those who relish the routine of applying many different products to their skin and the wonderfully nourishing, almost saintly, feeling it gives them. There is nothing wrong with that level of skincare attention as undoubtedly all skin needs will be met. However, for many it has to be quick and effective and fit in with life, and here the old adage of ‘less is more’ can apply nicely. With the advances in cosmeceutical skincare, a skincare therapist can now recommend intensive products which can dramatically lessen the load on your bathroom shelf and increase the results you see on your face. Recently I have been recommending that clients wanting visible impact on their skin spend their money differently by reducing their routine but using stronger products! The right four products can do more for someone trying to slow ageing then a cartload of impulse and badly advised buys. 92 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

So what is needed for a routine that gives results but is time-efficient? Using a cleanser in the evening will remove environmental dirt, micro-organisms and make-up, allowing the skin to repair its barrier function. Then apply the powerful skin damage reversing product, Retinol. When bought in a high-quality formulation, this powerful ingredient can massively smooth lines, lessen pore size, help combat break-outs and reduce or even remove pigmentation and scarring. It does this by speeding up cell renewal predominately but also by stimulating blood flow and collagen production. Retinol must only be used at night-time (it will have the opposite effects if used in daylight) and cannot be used by pregnant or breast-feeding women. In the morning, first apply an eye product to the delicate eye area above and below and towards the temples. Applying this first protects the delicate, thinner skin from heavier creams that can create puffiness. Follow with a moisturiser to bind water and natural oils in the skin to keep it supple. Ensure that it contains a minimum of SPF50 to protect your face from the daily presence of UVA rays, 365 days of the year. This will protect your skin from premature ageing and allow it to use daylight hours to repair itself rather than dealing with damaging ultra violet radiation. A fresh look at and a shake-up of your skincare approach might just give you renewed enthusiasm to change your routine and a smoother face to boot!


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Body & Mind

WHY I USE BOWEN TECHNIQUE Joanna Hazelton MARH RHom, 56 London Road Clinic


had little idea when first introduced to the Bowen Technique in the mid 1990’s, that it would become the founding therapy of my practice. A change of circumstances in the early 2000’s led to a whirlwind journey that has driven and defined my life ever since. All choices I have made subsequently to train in further modalities are based upon the concept that they will work both alone as individual techniques, but also will complement each other. Bowen appears to awaken the body’s natural healing mechanisms, but because it is so gentle it can be used alongside, or in a support role, to other interventions, such as medication, surgery, or certain other complimentary therapies, such as osteopathy, chiropractic, acupuncture or indeed counselling. What is it about Bowen that is unique enough to base the core of my practice upon, and to use as a base for my choice of further therapeutic training? The technique is not easily described in relation to other bodywork techniques. Research continues to study exactly how the technique works but it is proposed that every molecule of tissue and cell in the human body is ‘wired’ directly to the brain. This follows the concept that the body-mind are one, a complex system of interactive processes from head to toe. In other words, Bowen is said to encourage the body to heal itself, the gentle, precise moves on specific areas can be looked at as ‘resetting’ the body’s processes. Bowen is considered effective for conditions of back pain, sciatica, neck restrictions, sports injuries, knee problems, frozen shoulders, bronchial and asthmatic problems, tennis elbow, menstrual irregularities, headaches and migraines plus stress and tension. It is also used as a support for many chronic conditions such as ME and arthritic symptoms. The success of Bowen is not limited to purely physical conditions and many therapists report distinct improvement to patients’ emotional well-being. Bowen appears to stimulate circulation, encourage lymphatic and venous drainage, promote assimilation of nutrients and elimination of toxins, increase joint mobility and improve posture. Bowen has spread to the professional sports world too, with sports therapists saying its results often rival physiotherapy. Tests have shown that competitors having regular Bowen treatments consistently perform better, with an accelerated rate of recovery after injury. Across the world, therapists are successfully working with Bowen as their only therapy, or like myself, as part of a group of complimentary techniques. Bowen attracts a broad range of professionals within established medicine, as well as complimentary medicine; medical doctors, midwives, nurses, plus osteopaths, chiropractors, physiotherapists, acupuncturists, who ‘praise the technique for its power.’ How Australian Tom Bowen came to his remarkable technique is something of a legend. He claimed his discovery was ‘a gift from God.’ Perhaps it was, it is certainly extraordinary, and was seen as such by the Australian government in 1975 when it released the Webb report, in which Tom Bowen was revealed to be [successfully] treating some 13,000 patients a year.

94 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

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Body & Mind



s human beings we need to maintain some kind of exercise to keep well and stay fit. But we spend so much of our busy lives rushing around, that we can forget the importance of keeping our bodies in good working order. The NHS recommends that adults partake in two and a half hours per week of moderate-intensity exercise to remain healthy. It is widely understood that exercise not only improves your sleep, cognition and energy levels, but also greatly benefits your mental health. 96 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Research by think tank, the New Economics Foundation, recommends ‘The Five Ways to Wellbeing’ for improving mental health. Exercise can help you achieve all ‘Five Ways’- which are Connecting, Learning, Giving, Noticing and Being Active. By exercising with friends or as part of a group, activity can help you ‘Connect’ with others and socialise. Signing up for a gym class or sports team is a great way to achieve this. Research suggests that feeling close to and valued by other people is an important part of living

mentally healthy, so exercising with others not only increases the benefits of exercise but also improves your mental wellbeing. Exercise also provides the opportunity to ‘Learn’. You could learn a new sport or skill and feel rewarded as you progress, thereby improving your self-esteem when you reach your goals. As an additional bonus, turbo-charging your self-esteem improves resilience to stress and increases overall life satisfaction. Exercise can also enable you to ‘Notice’ your surroundings and if you ground yourself in the present moment, it’s also referred to as mindfulness. Mindfulness has been found to improve mental wellbeing and quality of life; this can be practiced during exercise. Next time you are exercising outside, why not pay attention to and focus on the sensations in your muscles, the movements you make, the wind on your face, or the beauty of nature and let these sensations ease your mind as you exercise? Research by King’s College in 2018, suggests that moderate exercise for 20 minutes a day cuts the risk of developing depression by one third. Moreover, we know that exercise can reduce symptoms of anxiety; by boosting physical and mental energy, releasing endorphins and reducing tension and stress. Highly active individuals tend to have lower stress levels, compared to less active people. In fact, exercise has also been associated with better physical, mental and cognitive health in individuals. For example, exercise has been found to decrease the likelihood of dementia and delay further damage with people who already have dementia. There are many reasons to get more active but regardless of what motivates you to exercise, you’ll see that the benefits are wonderfully limitless.

"turbo-charging your self-esteem improves resilience to stress"

Dorset Mind is encouraging everyone to sign up for their ‘RED January’ challenge, which involves exercising every day in January. The beauty of this challenge is that you set your own goal – it could simply be completing a certain number of steps each day or going for a half hour swim or jog. You can complete RED January to improve your own mental wellbeing, or to fundraise for Dorset Mind and help them carry out the vital work they do in Dorset. Sign up for free here:  @DorsetMindOfficial  @DorsetMind   @DorsetMind | 97

Body & Mind


Simon Partridge BSc (Sports Science), Personal Trainer SPFit


ast month I wrote about the benefits of exercising with kettlebells. As we are now in a new year, let’s look at the benefits of running. Running can significantly improve physical and mental health. As a form of aerobic exercise, running can reduce stress, improve heart health, and even help alleviate symptoms of depression. If you haven’t run in a while or are just starting to run, it can be very challenging. But once your body and mind start to adjust, running can be blissful, meditative, and provide a sense of freedom. As someone who recently stopped recording his times and distances every time I ran, I can confirm that’s true. Remember that you’re running to have fun and we are fortunate to have some wonderful countryside right outside Sherborne to explore. These are some of the physical and mental health benefits of running: • A 30-minute run can lift symptoms of depression and improve mood. • Contrary to what many people think, running actually seems to improve knee health. It’s often a sign of overtraining or a need to improve one’s form or flexibility but running probably isn’t the cause of knee osteoarthritis. Running also strengthens bones. • Running helps people sleep better, improves their 98 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

mood, and boosts their ability to focus. • We know that aerobic activity is good for the heart, so it’s no surprise that running can improve cardiovascular fitness. In general, the more people run, the healthier their hearts tend to be. • Running can improve your mind at any age and fight age-related cognitive decline. If you want to keep your mind healthy as you age, research indicates exercising is one of the best things you can do. • Running changes the brain in ways that make it more resistant to stress. Research shows this may be because aerobic exercise increases levels of neurotransmitters like serotonin and norepinephrine, and causes the brain to generate new neurons. • Running is a great way to burn calories. At a pace of 5 mph (about a 12-minute mile), a 160-pound person will burn 606 calories an hour — and a 200-pound person will burn 755 calories in that hour. • But the real deal-clincher is surely that running and other forms of aerobic exercise significantly reduce your chances of death. Getting 30 minutes or more of aerobic exercise on a regular basis makes people significantly less likely to die from any cause. Getting an hour or more of movement is even better, according to some research. People who meet these exercise guidelines are significantly less likely to develop a

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number of forms of cancer, according to a major review of research. The easiest way for many of us to get all these benefits of exercise is to get out and start running. So what is stopping you in 2019? Here are just a few ideas to get you going: 1 Join a running club for the camaraderie and support of running with others. 2 Try one of the increasingly popular Park Runs such as the one at Henstridge. 3 Set yourself a goal and enter the Sherborne 10km on 3rd March. 4 Use running to raise money for your favourite charity. We entered the Up, Down and Dirty event last November for St Margaret’s Hospice (see photo). Now the rest is down to you. Good luck. SPFit has a variety of training options designed for all abilities from 1:1 coaching, a Running Club to small group training that includes power yoga (Broga), outdoor bootcamps, weight lifting and crossfit type classes.

LONDON ROAD CLINIC Health Clinic • Acupuncture • Osteopathy • Counselling • Physiotherapy • EMDR Therapy • Shiatsu

• Podiatry and Chiropody • Manual Lymphatic Drainage • Soft Tissue Therapy, Sports & Remedial Massage Therapy • Hopi Ear Candle Therapy

Tel: 01963 251860 Email: 56 London Road, Milborne Port, Sherborne DT9 5DW Free Parking and Wheelchair access | 99

Body & Mind


Image: Stuart Brill

Craig Hardaker BSc (Hons), Communifit


veryone at Communifit would like to wish you all a very happy 2019. It’s now time to get back to normality. It is often hard after the Christmas period to find the motivation to get back to healthy eating and higher intensity exercise to burn off those extra calories consumed over the festive season. Even more so when training alone. Many of my clients try to practice the exercises taught, but admit to finding it much harder than a motivating personal training or group environment session. This is where group training can help. Here are 6 benefits as to why group training is beneficial. 1 Motivation It’s inspiring to be surrounded by dedicated, like-minded 100 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

individuals. It can be very empowering to be in a class with an encouraging instructor and supportive people all working hard together. Group fitness is a great way to help motivate both yourself and others to dig deeper and push harder in workouts. There are many ways to motivate, a good instructor will find the one to suit you. 2 Structure Group fitness is a great way to undertake a workout without having to think or plan. Each class is structured with a warm-up, a balanced workout and a cool down. The warm-up is designed to help you properly raise your heart rate while loosening your joints and muscles before commencing an activity. The instructor will coach you

through each segment of the workout, making sure you are targeting all areas needed. The cool down will help you safely lower your heart rate and stretch all the major muscles worked during class. 3 Safety It’s the fitness instructor’s job to not only show proper technique, but to also make sure that everyone in the class is executing each exercise the right way. Not only is proper technique important for your muscles to reap the most out of every exercise, but it also helps eliminate potential injuries. The instructor will help you move between work and rest in a safe environment. Training alone will not give you that expert help when required.

Easily affordable, accessible exercise classes in Sherborne, Yeovil, East Coker and Yetminster.

Please contact us or view our online timetable for all current classes. Many more coming your way this year so keep a look out!

4 Variety The instructor will make sure each week is different, whether this relates to the order of activity or a complete change of exercise. Having variety in your weekly workout regime is a great way to create ‘muscle confusion‘, which keeps your body guessing and ramps up your metabolism. It also helps prevent boredom. A good instructor will always give you alternatives, making certain exercises harder or easier. This variety makes sure the class caters to all. 5 Friendship It’s amazing how many friendships are formed through participating in regular exercise classes, often people with similar mindsets, interests and hobbies – it is no wonder that people meet friends for life! Forming this friendship will help create a positive motivational climate, all with a smile. 6 Fun There’s no doubt that group fitness classes are fun. Combining upbeat music, a great workout and a group of people motivating each other along the way, it’s an enjoyable way to exercise. If you’re looking to add a little more interest into your fitness regime, group classes may be just what you need. To avoid training alone, another option may be personal training. You get all the 6 benefits of group training, with it being more targeted and specific to your individual health and fitness requirements. Let’s invest in our health and make 2019 the year to remember!


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BODY BOOTCAMP An all over body workout ready to burn away those Christmas calories! Thursday 6pm-7pm at the West End Hall. £5 pay as you go

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

communi_fit | 101

Body & Mind



Dr Tim Robinson MB BS MSc MRCGP DRCOG MFHom GP & Complementary Practitioner

he menopause is a natural phase in a woman’s life when her fertility draws to a close due to falling levels of the female hormones, oestrogen and progesterone. As this happens a number of symptoms are experienced, the most troublesome of which are hot flushes and night sweats that can last up to 8 years according to a recent survey. They may occur up to hourly day and night. Interrupted sleep results in daytime tiredness, poor concentration and mood changes such as irritability and weepiness. As these menopausal symptoms are caused by falling hormone levels, the obvious solution is a top-up with synthetic equivalents, namely hormone replacement therapy (HRT). Although this is perfectly safe treatment prescribed by the GP, many women prefer to treat their sweats and flushes naturally. There is also a group of women who are not able to have HRT due to cardiovascular disease or previous breast or gynaecological cancer. HRT is no longer prescribed indefinitely; unfortunately, there are women whose flushes and sweats return upon HRT discontinuation. Whichever of these situations applies, women will look for alternative ways to eradicate the sweats and flushes. Lifestyle tips can be very helpful. Studies have shown that regular aerobic exercise and reduction in caffeine and alcohol intake reduce flushes. Smoking reduces oestrogen levels and brings about earlier menopause. For these reasons as well as the cardiovascular and cancer risk, smoking should stop. Yoga, Tai Chi and abdominal breathing techniques have also been advocated as flush control methods. Manual therapies such as reflexology, foot massage, chiropractic and acupuncture have also all been shown to have some benefits in menopause treatment. Dietary measures can help reduce menopausal flushing: oestrogen-like plant hormones (phyto-oestrogens) are 102 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

found in many plants. They are much weaker than human oestrogen but still provide a natural boost as demonstrated by scientific studies. Two classes of food, namely isoflavones (in soybeans and soy products such as tofu, chickpeas, red clover) and lignans (in flaxseeds, cereals and dark green vegetables), contain phyto-oestrogens and should be included in the diet to reduce flushing. Herbal preparations have also been used for menopausal flushes with mixed success. Black cohosh, sage leaf extract and agnus castus are all herbs that can be sourced from the pharmacy and health food stores. Before taking any supplements check with the pharmacist to rule out any adverse effects or interactions with conventional medication that you may have been prescribed. Experiment with each in turn over a 6- to 8-week period; if there is no benefit proceed to another herbal medicine. Hopefully one of them will be helpful. Homeopathic medicine is another treatment that frequently relieves menopausal flushes and night sweats. Belladonna, sulphur, lachesis, sepia and pulsatilla are often successful. These can also be obtained from pharmacies and health food shops at low potency. However, advice from a homeopath is preferable in order to be prescribed the most appropriate medicine according to the symptoms as well as the overall profile of the person. To sum up, the approaches to manage menopausal flushes and sweats worth considering are as follows: take regular aerobic exercise; incorporate plant-oestrogen food into your diet a few times each week; experiment with black cohosh but failing that consider homeopathy. By following this advice, I hope that your hot flushes and sweats will be minimised or even eliminated, energy and sleep restored, for full health and wellbeing during the menopause.

Brister&Son Independent Family Funeral Directors

When your family suffers the loss of a loved one, we are here to support, guide and reassure you – every step of the way Call Daniel on 01935 812647 100 Lenthay Road, Sherborne DT9 6AG Email:

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Private Chapels of Rest Website

Independent Family Directors and Monumental Mason 33 SparrowFuneral Road, Yeovil BA21 4BT Tel: 01935 479913 16 Newland, Sherborne, DorsetService DT9 3JQ -Tel: 01935 816817 - 24 Hour Please contact Clive Wakely, or a member of our dedicated team for any advice or guidance.

Private Chapels of Rest | 103

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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Nazareth Lodge Residential Care Home, Sturminster Newton, Dorset

Rated ‘OUTSTANDING’ by the Care Quality Commission in our last two inspections Nazareth Lodge is a charming residential care home situated in a quiet backwater of Sturminster Newton yet within easy reach of this vibrant market town. Winter is now with us and the darker evenings have drawn in. Time perhaps to plan ahead? If you want to experience top quality care for yourself, or have peace of mind regarding a loved one, then why not come and see us. Only 2% of care homes have achieved an “Outstanding” rating in the UK making us incredibly proud to have retained the rating again this year. As well as permanent residency, we can also provide respite, convalescence and palliative care.

AWARD WINNING HOME Winners of numerous awards including the highest accolade of Platinum status for “End of Life Care”

For further information: Tel: 01258 472511 Email: | 105

Lettings & Property Management

Independent Letting Agent representing town and country property throughout Somerset and Dorset

WISHING ALL OUR CLIENTS A VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR Coming to the market early in 2019 Milborne Port – Period cottage, three bedrooms, newly renovated with garden and parking Dewlish – Barn Conversion presented to an excellent standard with workshop (use restrictions)

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Castle Cary – Detached farmhouse in rural setting, three bedrooms. Nr Yetminser – Detached modern family home with four bedrooms, garden and parking Flat to let in – Sherborne,Yeovil,West Coker, Abbotsbury

106 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Abbotsbury – Period cottage in village centre, two bedrooms, to be renovated prior to letting


HUMBERTS LEADS THE WAY INTO AN EXCITING FUTURE Humberts has, for over 175 years, maintained a strong reputation for offering trustworthy and professional property advice to the Dorset area. Humberts is continuing its journey as it moved to its first high tech, high touch 5000sq ft brand new Humberts Hub in Poundbury, Dorset in conjunction with launching its lifestyle concierge, Humberts Living. The Poundbury Humberts Hub will be home to the Base Team and a number of the Property Consultants, who are able to not only provide sales, letting and Commerical advice to clients but through Humberts Living can now also provide a range of other services including gardening, removals, utility switching and planning related services.

Humberts Hub, Pounbury

“The first Humberts Hub is leading the way for us as a company in showcasing our new high tech, high touch philosophy in a brand-new building fit for purpose. We aim to be a key location for our local community and encourage all those that are interested in what we’re doing to come down and say hello. Myself and the team look forward to seeing both familiar and new faces soon, as well as revealing more exciting updates over the coming months” comments Natalie on the opening of the new Hub.

Humberts looks forward to inviting clients to its brand new hub and to showcase the range of services now available to the Dorset community. If you would like to discuss your property and find out how Humberts can help you, please contact: Sales: 01305 238 970 | Lettings: 01935 315376 | Commerical: 01935 552 121 |

YOUR LOCAL DORSET TEAM COMMITTED TO TAKING YOU ON YOUR PROPERTY JOURNEY At Humberts we are changing the way we do things, we don’t just focus on selling or letting properties. Our teams are able to support you on all items related to your property journey, whether arranging your removals, organising tradesmen or submitting plans for your dream extension, our dedicated team can do it all.

CONTACT YOUR DORSET TEAM If you want to work with an agent who can offer you more MOVING YOU SINCE 1842


RENOVATION PROJECTS Paul Gammage and Anita Light, Ewemove Sherborne


n our experience, house hunters fall into one of two camps: those that love the idea of putting their own stamp on a property and those whose worst nightmare is building works and substantial decorating. But are those that fall into the latter group missing an important opportunity? Why would you?

1 It may enable you to buy somewhere that would be otherwise unobtainable. Whether it’s your dream location which comes with a hefty price tag or the type of property you want, somewhere in need of work often has less competition from other buyers and a lower asking price. 2 A renovation also allows you to make your property uniquely you! Depending on how much work is needed, you may be able to redesign the layout, add or remove rooms, and completely refurbish and redecorate. Of course, this can be hard work but it can also be a lot of fun and great for creative, practical people who really enjoy a project. 3 You may want your renovated property to be your forever home but you may also find that your newly modernised home will achieve great returns on a resale (better than if you had bought and then sold a home that was already renovated and modern). Statistics show that even a small kitchen renovation or loft conversion project can add up to 3 times the money spent when it comes to sale. Is a renovation project right for you?

Without a shadow of a doubt, renovating is not for everyone and you should consider the following. You will need to choose your property carefully. Some properties will never be desirable or in the right location, even if you’ve refurbished it to a high standard. Other properties may involve such a lot of work that it’s going to be a couple

108 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

of years before it’s all done. Some old properties have restrictions on them particularly if they are listed, meaning you may not be able to do the work you want or you may have to employ specialist craftsman to do the work. Have a plan

Before you start, be clear on your long-term plans and on a realistic budget. Be honest with yourself about how much time you have to commit to a renovation, and to what extent you’re really capable of doing it yourself. Bear in mind that most renovation projects run over both in terms of costs and time. Allow an extra 20% for this. Having someone with a firm hand on the finances and preferably someone managing the project is important. Make sure that lenders will be prepared to lend on any property you have in mind and check whether there will be any additional costs such as higher insurance premiums. If a resale is your intention (or in other words, you are considering a renovation project simply in order to make a profit), you may be able to enter into a ‘joint venture’ with an investor who’s got the experience and the funds. An ‘Assisted Sale’ is one such strategy which can be used where someone might already own a house but can’t afford to spend money to improve it for a sale. In these circumstances, they could enter into a joint venture with an investor and share the profit. Be prepared for the mess

You’ve also got to be prepared to put up with a measure of inconvenience for a while. You may try and do some of the work yourself (though that inevitably slows a project down) but the chances are, you will need some workmen on site. This can be messy, noisy and disruptive and, again, ideally, you want someone managing the works.

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riving along the country roads in South Dorset I reached the village of Moreton and I was about to continue my journey when I saw two white ornate portico columns with imposing lychgates and had to investigate. It is the entrance to the cemetery where the most famous inhabitant is T.E. Lawrence better known by the sobriquet Lawrence of Arabia. I was suddenly transported back to the cinema in my teenage years as Peter O’Toole and Omar Sharif rode across the vast desert landscape in David Lean’s epic film. I thought of the first scene when Lawrence rides his Brough Motorcycle along a tree lined lane and has his fatal accident and then I remembered he had been stationed at Bovington Camp near Wareham and lived at Clouds Hill. I was unaware, however, that he had been a friend of the Frampton family who owned the Moreton Estate and they allowed him to be buried in their family plot. Local folklore says that he was buried six feet from his headstone to foil grave robbers! The dramatic film score whirled around in my head and I recollected the mesmerising scenes; the advance on Aqaba, Lawrence preening in his Arab garments, the hijacking of the trains and the big push on Damascus. All wonderful scenes. For those who may have missed it, Lawrence was an archaeologist, war hero and writer and a real life Indiana Jones. He was renowned for his role during the Sinai and Palestine Campaign and the Arab Revolt against the Ottoman Empire during the First World War and 110 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

he played a significant part in the establishment of the map of the Middle East as we know it during his time in the military there. After the war, good looking, poetic and charming Lawrence became a legendary figure with friends in high places and naturally became a tabloid hit. However, as a private man who even refused a knighthood, he decided to escape it all and moved to Dorset. You can still visit his home today, courtesy of The National Trust, and it remains almost exactly the same as Lawrence left it. He referred to it as ‘a hut in a wood near camp wherein I spend my spare evenings’ and its modesty is humbling for such an extraordinary man. His funeral was held at the church in Moreton and was attended by a variety of celebrities from every walk of society including Winston Churchill, Siegfried Sassoon, Augustus John and Eric Kennington and his grave is inscribed with the motto of Oxford University DOM MINA INVS TIO ILLV MEA ‘The Lord is my light’. There is however, a silver lining. The neurologist who cared for him in his last days consequently began a study into the unnecessary loss of life by motorcycle accidents and this research led to the use of crash helmets in both the military and by civilians which has saved countless lives since. It is well worth a visit to the graveyard and the cottage but even better to idle away 3 hours 48 minutes watching the film.

Sherborne – Town Centre studio to let with parking




doctor who relocated to a new-build home in Dorset was so impressed with its quality and the location, he couldn’t help but tell a colleague.

“The open-plan kitchen and dining area is modern and perfect for our lifestyle.”

Little did he know his co-worker would end up moving in two

Mildenhall was also recommended to Dr Ilan by a colleague, and having rented for a while in Yeovil, he realised Bovis

doors down as a result!

Homes’ location was the right spot to move his family.

Dr Subramanyam Ilan, a consultant radiologist at Yeovil

They decided to buy the four-bed Canterbury house type immediately after they stepped through the front door. They

District Hospital, moved into a Bovis Home in Sherborne with his wife Greetha, a gynaecologist at the same hospital, and their children Magizhini, 5, and Inba, 2.

wanted a minimum of three bedrooms so Magizhini and Imba could each have their own.

After telling his colleague how great the four-bedroom house at Bovis Homes’ Mildenhall location was, Dr Ilan then found out the fellow doctor would be moving in practically next door.

They were also won over by the large garden and the location

Dr Ilan, a first-time buyer, said: “My colleague was searching for a house too and I recommended he go for something similar to our Bovis Home due to its layout, quality and location. We have just found out that he’s going to live right by us!

The family have been getting to know the local community well – and invited their elderly neighbour over on

“Everything is fantastic with the house. We looked at the online reviews before we had a look around and everything was first rate, particularly the quality. It’s energy-efficient and very comfortable, with automated heating controls, which is so important with two children.

close to the playgroup, which is less than a mile away, plus a variety of amenities only 15 minutes away.

Christmas Day. Dr Ilan, who speaks four languages, is from South India and met his wife as an undergraduate. He spent six years in Moscow before moving to Yeovil 18 months ago. For more information on Bovis Homes’ Mildenhall location and the purchasing schemes available, visit

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01935 578004 Home exchange scheme is subject to independent valuations, survey and contract on your existing property and is subject to criteria, which include the property you are selling is worth no more than 75% of the value of the new Bovis Home you wish to purchase. Home Exchange market value figures are based on reports from 2 independent local NAEA registered agents for a selling period of 8 weeks. Available of selected plots only. Maximum property price excepted via the Home exchange scheme is ÂŁ400,000. Cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer or promotion. Photograph depicts a typical Bovis Home interior. Elevation may differ to that shown. Internal images may include optional upgrades at an additional cost. Price & availability correct at time of going to print/broadcast. Please ask our sales advisor for details.


EMBRACING THE FUTURE Steven Treharne, Managing Partner at Mogers Drewett


he start of a new year always evokes a positive attitude towards the future, we make resolutions for self-improvement, promises to kick bad habits and ideals for a better lifestyle. As we step into 2019, of course we don’t know what the future will hold, but we can choose to embrace it and make the most of it in a positive way. At Mogers Drewett, the use of technology is one way we’re embracing the future. As a daily occurrence for most of us, our business, social and personal interactions are now made more effective through the use of technology and robotics. Whether it is an automated machine to answer a call, a touch screen to place an order in McDonalds or a chatbot to respond to a query – the way we interact with businesses and each other is continuing to change. Robotics and AI definitely have a place in the future of our business – but it’s about finding the right way to use them that offers benefits to our clients and improves our service that is the key. We are currently testing the use of a robot to streamline our client “on-boarding” processes so that clients benefit from a quicker, consistent and more efficient service. By reassigning tasks to our ‘robot’ such as identification checks, conflict checks, file opening and data inputting to prepare the terms of engagement and other initial paperwork, we free up resources so that our people can focus on more ‘value added’ activity for our clients. With a few months settling in since the Autumn 114 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Budget, this year we will start to see its impact taking shape. In the residential property market, the Help to Buy scheme has been extended for another two years for first time buyers, a great opportunity to get on the housing ladder. Also, the tax-free threshold for earnings which was raised to £12,500 and the higher rate lifted to £50,000, will see tax payers starting to benefit from a little more income in their pockets. What we don’t yet know is the level of inflation that may counter that. Inevitably, Brexit will continue to dominate the news pages in 2019 whether it’s the details of the deal or the real impact it will have on the country; that thunder storm will rumble on. An interesting legal development in 2019 could be the introduction of no-fault divorce. If introduced, a no-fault divorce will remove the blame element of the process and in turn, soften the battle ground that causes anxiety and heightens tension, at what is already a difficult time for couples and their children. But regardless of a no-fault divorce introduction in 2019, 2020 or beyond, our ‘Family Team’ of divorce and children solicitors always guide our clients through the process with compassion and sensitivity. Overall, it’s going to be an interesting year and if you need any legal or financial advice along the way, we have an experienced team who can offer advice and guidance in 2019 and beyond. And… good luck with the NY resolutions.

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116 | Sherborne Times | January 2019


LOSSES, GAINS AND LIGHTWEIGHT CLAIMS Andrew Fort B.A. (Econ.) CFPcm Chartered MCSI APFS, Certified and Chartered Financial Planner, Fort Financial Planning


e want to be rich and we want to be thin, so it’s not surprising that two of the world’s most successful industries are those that cater to those two aspirations. But take a closer look and you’ll find that the diet and investment industries have far more in common than you might have thought.

Both advertise prodigiously

Both have scant regard for the evidence

Most of their products don’t work

The overwhelming evidence is that the best way to lose weight is to eat healthily, consume fewer calories and exercise more; and that the optimal investment strategy is to buy and hold a low-cost and highly diversified portfolio. The evidence has been known for decades. That the diet and investment industries remain so powerful is testament to their ability to hide it, or distract us from it with spurious evidence of their own.

Again and again we hear of new diet products, yet almost invariably they fail to deliver. Investment products are no different. The whole point of buying an actively-managed fund, for example, is to achieve market-beating returns, but the evidence shows that, net of costs, the majority of active funds extract value from the investment process rather than add it.

Both prey on people’s gullibility

Finally, we’re back where we’re started, with perhaps the most glaring similarity between these two industries — namely their size and profitability. That’s right. Despite their manifest failings we continue to reward them royally with our custom.

Of course people want to believe there’s a pill that will help them shed the pounds, or that a daily cup of herbal tea will magically allow them to enjoy their favourite foods and still drop a dress size. Gullibility is a common human frailty that pushers of diet and investment fads use to their advantage. Both focus on the short term

Another human weakness on which sales and marketing teams capitalise is our impatience. They know we want quick results, so they make us think we can lose that tummy in days. They give examples of people who really did make an overnight killing on penny stocks. But it takes time to become obese, and time to return to a healthy weight. Building wealth takes far, far longer still.

Both the diet and investment industries spend heavily on advertising. They also know just where and when to advertise and precisely which buttons to press. Crucially, they’ve mastered the art of appearing to offer more than they really do, while ensuring that any claims they make, fall just within the relevant regulations.

Both are awesomely profitable

The fact is that we can achieve the results we’re looking for. There are simple solutions to losing weight and to ensuring that each of us has enough money to last us until the end of our lives. Note I said simple, not easy. Both require patience, single-mindedness and self-discipline. But both solutions will work as long as you stick to the plan — and you’ll save yourself a fortune in the process. We call our approach to investing as The Art and Science of Investing. Patience and discipline is needed to avoid the mistakes that others make. | 117



n the good old days, the January sales were a way for retailers to shift unsold Christmas stock. Today, retailers can have a ‘sale’ whenever they want and they buy stock deliberately to be able to sell it in a ‘sale’. The latest trend of Black Friday and Cyber Monday pre-Christmas sales are good examples of retailers stocking-up for a sale. However, being the cynic that I am, I do question if the deals are as good as they appear. Many retailers will simply have sold the goods at an inflated price for the legally requisite period, only to massively ‘discount’ them in the sale. Supermarket wines are a great example of this. A single facing of a wine at £10 in a corner for 6 weeks becomes a whole end-of-aisle display at £5 a bottle (50% off ). Nobody questions if the wine was worth £10 in the first place as it’s rarely possible to find the product elsewhere. This brings me onto my next area of cynicism: price matching. We are offered a price and advised that if we can find the same product for a better deal elsewhere we’ll get double the difference back, or some other such waffle. The reality is that the product will be an exclusive for the retailer and impossible to match elsewhere. Computers are a good example of this where the specification is never like-for-like between shops. Always ask yourself, why is the item on offer in the first place? Is it old stock? Is it low specification? Is it the line that makes the retailer the best margin? I’ll admit 118 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

that if I can find a real bargain in IT equipment then I do tend to buy a lot of it, simply because we’ll make a better profit. That’s called good business, however its only good business if you can afford the cash outlay or you can sell it on before you have to pay for it. Picking up a bargain in the sales on credit is never a good bargain! So, what should you do if you’re looking to get some new kit in the sales? Be clear what you’re looking for and write down the specification, then start searching online and visit as many retailers as you can. Compare the prices and detailed specification and try to find the best compromise. It is often difficult to find exactly what you want and therefore necessary to accept a product and modify it yourself. Ensure the sale is really genuine and check that the headline price is not someone else’s normal price. Finally, remember that delivery charges can make all the difference. The product you’re looking for may be cheap but you may have to pay £9.95 for delivery, whereas another online store sells the product for a higher price but with free delivery. Be a savvy shopper! As always, if in doubt or if you need help, you know where to come! Next month - Tomorrow’s World, Today!

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FOLK TALES with Colin Lambert




t’s a cold wet Thursday on the Terraces, horizontal rain glistening in the floodlights. I’m on the wing for Harlequins, flying down the touchline, diving to score the winning try. In your dreams Colin. I’m flat on the ground, having dropped the ball, lungs bursting. I feel strong hands on my back as I’m lifted to my feet and helped to the touchline. ‘Colin, it’s best if you wait in the clubhouse ‘til training is over.’ I comply. Tom was born in Colchester but arrived in Bradford Abbas aged six, rugby already in the blood having watched his dad from an early age. Sherborne minirugby and the Gryphon School deepened his passion. ‘I was a bit cocky, chirpy and always had something to say. School was easy; I chose English, Philosophy and Sport for A-level. The Gryphon opened my eyes to the world, the school trip to India being my favourite.’ ‘English and Philosophy?’ ‘Yes, everything from Plato to Richard Dawkins. I 122 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

fancied being a sports journalist hence the English. I only managed a ‘C’ in both but I got a ‘B’ in Sport - enough for a place at Cardiff to study Sports Management.’ ‘Cardiff Uni 1st XV?’ ‘No, they took it far too seriously, no alcohol after games and strict diets.’ ‘Not my kind of rugby! What did you do?’ ‘I played Rugby League and loved it.’ ‘I also played rugby league; my dad captained Featherstone Rovers so it was in my blood. After Uni?’ ‘Back home to parents and my first real job.’ ‘Sports management I presume?’ No, selling power tools, living in my car between Cornwall, Crawley and Liverpool but always home for Thursday training. I’m now vice-captain and First XV scrum half.’ The perfect position for a cocky, chirpy lad methinks. For the uninitiated, the XV-a-side game consists of

eight thugs (the forwards) and seven pretty boys (the backs), one of which is scrum half, the pivot, the king pin who brings balance and order to the team. ‘Tell me more.’ ‘I love shouting at the forwards, winding up the referee and keeping the backs on their toes. The Sherborne team is small in size so we play a wide and expansive game.’ ‘Wide and expansive?’ ‘Yes. We quickly move the ball out to the wings, tire out the opposition and keep the game flowing.’ ‘Does it work?’ ‘We instil this wide game ethos throughout the club, even from the minis. Our youth system is the key to our success. Our Colts, under-18’s, won the county cup this year. The 1st XV won the county cup in 2017 and this season we’re undefeated and top of the league. Rugby teaches respect, structure, discipline, teamwork and empathy. Sherborne rugby is one big family; it’s

been my second home for over 25 years.’ ‘I take it Sherborne rugby doesn’t have strict diet or drinking rules?’ ‘Drinking games are more the norm, then down the Digby Tap and maybe a curry.’ ‘I’m impressed. Still selling power tools?’ ‘At 24 I switched to a local steel manufacturer, Snashall Steel in Pulham. I’m now their sales manager. The firm has grown from nothing into a nationwide supplier with £7m turnover and 40 staff. By 25 I was able to purchase my own house, and all has gone well.’ ‘Gone well?’ ‘So far. Just after my 23rd birthday, while partying late in the Tap, Julie entered my life. My heart fluttered, my knees wobbled and I fell in love. She comes to every home game - loves men in shorts!’ Loves men in shorts! It’s rare I’m lost for words so after a short pause… ‘And for breakfast Tom?’ ‘I don’t do breakfast. I’m up and off. Sometimes grab a coffee on the way.’ ‘So what about your career in sports journalism?’ ‘Well, it’s always been an itch. I now write the match reports for the local papers and enjoy adding my own style and humour.’ ‘And for down time?’ ‘I really enjoy cooking. Julie and I love quiet evenings at home, a meal, TV and early nights. We got engaged two years ago and are expecting our first child on 22nd January. I am so excited and really looking forward to being a dad.’ ‘Yes, it’s very special bringing your own children into this world and seeing them grow and develop. My daughter Emily played rugby league for England Colts; it’s such a wonderful sport for children to play.’ ‘It is Colin but, as you’re 65, perhaps next time you visit the Terraces, leave your kit in the boot and stay on the touchline.’ Thank you, Tom Siggins, for sharing your Folk Tales, helping me to my feet from my attempt to turn back the years, and all the best for the rest of the season. Most of all we wish you and Julie a wonderful January and a warm welcome to parenthood. Sherborne Rugby Club welcomes all children from age five and upwards at 10am every Sunday throughout the season. Just turn up. | 123




Jemma Dempsey

h, village life - the faint whiff of the farmyard, the reassuring sound of church bells, the log fire in the cosy pub. While living far from the madding crowd is attractive to many, a village shop on the doorstep is an important lifeline. But with online shopping and cut-throat supermarkets, is there room in the retail landscape for the traditional village shop? Shopping habits have changed beyond recognition over the last decade - gone is the big, weekly food shop. In its place, smaller, more frequent, top-up shops at local stores. James Lowman, from the Association of Convenience Stores notes, ‘People are increasingly keen to shop close to where they live. You’ve got an ageing population, more single-person households, and people want to shop little and often. Village shops should be well-placed to take advantage of these trends.’ A well-stocked village shop, with variety and quality at its heart, can provide a viable alternative and a sense of wellbeing, knowing that something good is being put back into the community. But it’s not all about feeling good. The bottom line is that village shops add value to house prices. Phillip Harvey from Property Vision says, ‘Nice houses in good communities with a village shop are a scarcity, so they are in demand and house prices will increase accordingly, sometimes by as much as 10 per cent.’ The village shop in Bradford Abbas has a long history. A shop since the 1800s, it is currently run by Alan and 124 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Wendy Tucker. Veterans of the retail industry, they’ve been self-employed for 35 years and moved to the village, which lies between Sherborne and Yeovil, a year ago. They’re proud of their stock: Evershot Bakery supplies their bread, Noor Farm just over the hill is their local butcher, Longmans from North Cadbury supplies their cheese. With the 2011 census showing Bradford Abbas as home to 975 people, Alan says moving to the village was a no-brainer. With a 17th century pub nestled next to the church, it even has a primary school that attracts children from miles around. It’s a village that’s got a lot going for it. But that doesn’t guarantee success. Alan says competing against the mainstream supermarkets is key. ‘Village shops have to have that variance which the supermarkets don’t have, provide products outside the box such as home-cooked pasties, and locally-sourced products such as ham, eggs, cheese, bread and milk. We are always looking at price and quality.’ It’s also about doing things in a different, holistic way. Towards the end of last year the shop teamed up with the village school’s PTA to hold a Cheese and Wine Fair. The cheese, which was supplied by Longmans, and the wine from Tolchards can all be bought in the shop. Alan says, ‘We asked villagers what they wanted us to stock and we’ve listened. Their opinion is really important.’ So, when you run out of milk, need that crucial ingredient for a meal or just fancy something nice to eat, don’t forget the answer is right on your doorstep.



David Birley

fter the excitement of Christmas it is good to reflect on the past year and then with the advent of a new year to consider resolutions and wishes so here are my wishes and resolutions. I do hope that the proposed art gallery will get under way. We are exceptionally fortunate to have such a generous benefactor and as we know from the public meetings the vast majority of the town are in favour of the project, so let’s get on with it! We all know the effect that Hauser and Wirth has had on Bruton and I am sure our gallery will have the same effect on our town. I am sure we were all delighted to hear that at long last Sherborne House has found a new owner. Apart from being the most important building in our town (after the Abbey of course!), it is also a lovely example of palladian style architecture. When I last visited it, the Thornhill mural on the staircase had undergone restoration and was looking splendid but the rooms were in a sorry state. I look forward to seeing this important building being brought back to life. Please let us all make a resolution to do more local shopping. I appreciate it is easier to get some items online, but we are very lucky to have so many really good independent retailers who both need and deserve our support. The last year has seen some great new additions to our streets and I hope that trend will continue in the coming year. While we all have our own hopes and wishes, New Year is also a good time to think of others. Sherborne is a very caring community, indeed that aspect is one of the things that makes our town so great. I am sure we all do our bit to help our neighbours and friends, but let’s try to do just a little bit more while we can. It is good to remember the adage that ‘what goes round comes round’ and in years to come we ourselves may well need the help of others. Rosie my four-legged blonde friend would like to wish all her friends, both two- and fourlegged, a very happy New Year. She will be fifteen this year and is beginning to feel her age but there is still very much a spring in her step when we walk down Cheap Street and we talk to her friends, especially those shops which are kind enough to keep treats for their canine visitors. Rosie has two wishes - firstly if we have another really hot summer like last year can more shops put out drinking bowls as they get very thirsty and a drink of water on a really hot day is just the thing. Rosie’s second and main wish is that all dog owners carry at least two poo bags. Poo on our streets is both unsightly and a health hazard. If you have two bags you can not only look after your own dog but also take care of one that another owner has either not seen or ignored. Now for my personal wish. We are not doing the Summer Festival in 2019, after three years we need a rest! However we have already started planning the event for 2020 which we hope will be even bigger and better. We urgently need people to help with both the planning and the event itself. If you would like to help please ring me on 01935 509610. I look forward to hearing from you. | 125

Short Story


Julia Skelhorn, Sherborne Scribblers “Six invitations today,” Hector gloated, spreading them out on the worktop. “How good is that!” “How you going to choose?” Anastazja asked, emptying the overflowing waste bin. “Not sure yet,” Hector replied. “I need to consult the diary.” “You could stick pin!” “Don’t be ridiculous, girl” he barked. “You might do that in Poland, but not in Chelsea.” “Why so many invites then?” she said, throwing Hector a steely glare. “It’s what comes of being so popular, Anna,” Hector peered over his spectacles and ignored her look to kill. Tying up the bin bag, Anastazja raised her eyebrows. “My name is Anastazja, not Anna! Where did you get your name from? I do not know any other Hector.” “Good point,” Hector smiled. “You won’t have heard of the Battle of Buxar, I suppose?” he said, clicking his heels together and startling her. “The battle of where?” “Buxar – B U X A R! India, you know; near Bengal. A great ancestor of mine, Hector Munro, led the East India Company into battle there.” He paced to and fro, swinging his spectacles round and round. “So, your parents give you his name?” “Something like that.” Hector sighed. This was all becoming a bit too personal. “Ah, I see now,” Anastzja smiled. “Like picking name out of hat! My great grandfather was Count Kurnatowski – he was physician.” “Really? Well, I think you should get on with your cleaning now,” Hector snapped. “I pay you for two hours and you’ve done nothing for the last ten minutes!” Leaving her to bash round with the Dyson and to save any further inquisition into his birthright, Hector retreated to the study – well, the second bedroom really. He’d been grateful to Aunt Mildred for leaving him her flat; the Chelsea address was good for all sorts of reasons, but it was in an ugly modern block off Kings Road – not such a desirable area as he’d been used to. The last divorce had cost him far too much, so if he wanted to keep up his lifestyle in the city, he really didn’t have much choice. However, he told himself that everything was so accessible – useful little branches of M&S and Waitrose – good for his marinated duck breast and dauphinoise, and that super butcher, Jago, where he bought grouse really cheaply for his dinner parties. “Grouse, jolly good bags on the moors this year – do come to dinner.” He could walk to the Apollo – currently showing ‘Wicked’, the Cav and Guards Club, the Saatchi Gallery and of course, the V&A. All good venues when one was ‘home alone’ at weekends, which lately had become more frequent than he would have wished.

126 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

Opening his laptop he clicked on the diary. September was all sorted, and most of October; in fact, the social scene looked pretty healthy. ‘What have we here?’ he said to himself, leafing through the invites. He laid them out in order of preference on his desk. Top of the tree was one from his old friends, Fenella and Tom Buchanan – to a country house weekend at their Arts and Crafts mansion near Wotton-under-Edge, where they were hosting the Hunt Ball in a marquee. Hector had been before and wasn’t going to miss this one, even though it clashed with an invitation to his brother-in-law’s 60th – a weekend in Padstow and cookery course at Rick Stein’s. He’d been there, two years previously; pretty hard work and he hadn’t attempted to cook any of the recipes since. Decline. From Cordelia and Hamish – mid-week performance of ‘Wicked’ followed by supper at Caraffini. Only bearable if that dreadful Celia Blinkhorn wasn’t included in the party – he’d had enough of her at ‘Waiting for Godot’. Thank God, Godot never arrived! Few discreet enquiries to find out whether she was on the list. If not, accept. The Wine Society – a Wednesday evening tasting. Accept this one and hitch a lift with Gerald. From Gilly and Boris Tudenheim – a Thursday evening viewing of ‘Penumbra’ at the Saatchi Gallery – (looks interesting), followed by supper at ‘Zheng’. Great! No need to cook that evening! Accept Roddy McKewan’s 60th bash at the Cav & Guards Club – chaps only: in all probability a bloody good night out! One problem – night before Hunt Ball in Wotton, so not an option – shame! Decline A quick phone call confirmed that the ‘Godot woman’ wasn’t on the ‘Wicked’ list, so he penned his acceptance. Gerald agreed to pick him up in his Jag for the Wine Society tasting, he wrote a swift acceptance for the Saatchi Gallery viewing, dealt with brother-in-law via a phone call – a relief that Padstow clashed with the Hunt Ball! Now, how to overcome the problem of a partner for the House Party and Ball – single ladies had been a bit thin on the ground recently… ‘I wonder’, he thought, running his fingers through his hair. ‘I’ll quiz Anastazja a bit more about her aristocratic great grandfather – look him up on the web. Would look good to have the great granddaughter of a Count on my arm!’ Twenty four hours later, he wrote: ‘Darling Fenella, thrilled to join you and Tom on 7th for House Party and Hunt Ball. Bringing a delightful young lady, Anastazja, whose family are descendants from Polish aristocracy – her great grandfather was Count Kurnatowski, a renowned physician – you may have heard of him? Anastazja is in London for the season to improve her already excellent English. I am a very lucky chap. Be there for 4pm. ‘Til then Best, Hector. | 127


LITERARY REVIEW Jean Fox, Sherborne Literary Society

Winter by Ali Smith (Penguin, 2018), £8.99 paperback Sherborne Times Reader Offer Price of £7.99 from Winstone’s Books


f you are looking for an amusing, topical look at the world, this book delivers. Ali Smith’s Winter is the second part of her Seasonal Quartet, which began last year with Autumn, however it also stands alone. Winter evokes thoughts of snow, frost, darkness and Christmas with family and friends. The novel presents the thoughts and memories of four people over three days of Christmas. It is Christmas Eve in a large old house in Cornwall, and elderly, reclusive, businesswoman Sophia, estranged from her radical sister Iris, is expecting her son Arthur and his girlfriend Charlotte for what promises to be a difficult visit. Sophia is eccentric, perhaps confused, but we recognise her problems. A trip to the bank on Christmas Eve to withdraw cash in readiness for her visitors ends in failure because her Individual Personal Advisor is more intent on selling her insurance than Personally Advising her; the cashiers have gone home and the cash machine is out of order. She muses on luxury flats no-one can afford and the closure of local shops, both of which touch on the world we recognise, but much of her narrative is less recognisably ‘actual’. She sees the disembodied head of a child which follows her everywhere. She reflects on the tensions within her family, particularly with the radical Iris, and recalls Christmases past. On repeat wakings during Christmas Eve, she, like Scrooge, hears midnight bells time and again. The reader is constantly confronted

‘The novel of the year’ The Guardian

‘Dazzling’ Daily Telegraph

by the need to decide what is real and what is in her mind. Arthur (Art) arrives, fearing the worst. He sees little of his mother and the girlfriend he was supposed to be bringing for her inspection has just walked out. His solution is to hire a replacement whom he picks at random from a bus shelter. Lux agrees to accompany him for three days for £1,000 masquerading as Charlotte, yet it is she who brings both wisdom and truth to this world of self-deception, lies and secrets. When Sophia collapses, it is Lux who organises Iris to come and help out, Iris the anti-capitalist rebel, with her memories of Greenham Common, Porton Down, pesticides and refugees. It is Lux who enables Sophia to start eating again and sows the seeds of a reconciliation between Art, Sophia and Iris. Although Winter touches on a vast range of details (from over-familiar opticians to Donald Trump), Smith leaves us with a consoling sense of resolution as bitterness is assuaged. The events unroll with brilliant, inventive speed; Smith’s language is sharp and illuminating (not least her puns); she mixes protest songs with Christmas carols; and her allusions to Cymbeline and Scrooge, Giotto and Barbara Hepworth enrich our understanding of the world she presents. A good, witty and thought-provoking read.

Available April 2019

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ACROSS 1. Crack (4) 3. Enter unlawfully (8) 9. Shock physically (5-2) 10. Manor (anag) (5) 11. Formal announcements (12) 13. Insect larvae (6) 15. Modern ballroom dance (3-3) 17. Formal introduction (12) 20. Reasoned judgement (5) 21. Someone who studies data (7) 22. Shows (8) 23. Coalition of countries (4)

DOWN 1. Living in (8) 2. Old French currency (5) 4. Revoke a law (6) 5. Immediately (12) 6. Yearbook (7) 7. Having a sound mind (4) 8. Highly abstract (12) 12. Very attractive (of personality) (8) 14. Optical illusions (7) 16. Notoriety (6) 18. Pastoral poem (5) 19. Delighted (4) | 129



Sue Hawkett

pring is coming! It’s official. I’ve seen some snowdrops and now wait expectantly for the faithful daffodils in Yeovil to provide their exuberant display any time now. With the promise of warmer weather, colour is beginning to return to our gardens and countryside and, with it, certain hope and the knowledge of new life and new beginnings. However, this expectancy may be tempered by what has happened in our lives: perhaps we are experiencing a recent sadness or grieving for something from long ago. Coping with loss is a journey and is unique to each individual – the length not known and the pain keen – but part of grieving is remembering the laughter, the happy warm memories, the comfort of companionship and love, and the recollection of life’s ups and downs. In a moving Sunday Service radio broadcast, ‘Postcards from the Land of Grief ’, Rev Richard Littledale described the sadness of grief as, ‘A winter for the soul, when leaves and blossom fall from the tree and all that is left is the bare bones of trunk and branches.’ The emotion of loss can feel this way: raw exposure, vulnerability and pain. You may be feeling pain due to the breakdown of family relationships, illness, accident, isolation, loneliness, loss of income or employment, loss of a yet unborn child, death of a child, parent or grandparent – the feeling is the same. As Christians we believe that God never leaves nor forsakes us and gives us strength to work through these times. This theme is reflected in one of the Psalms when the Psalmist says that, ‘weeping may remain for a night but rejoicing comes in the morning’ – although the morning may take a long time in coming! If we look further into the ‘land of grief ’ and look more closely at our tree, we will see that buds are quietly appearing, the sap is rising and the tree is not dead after all but getting ready to burst into life again when the time is right. Each year in February, Sherborne Churches Together host the ‘Sherborne Snowdrop Service’ this year to be held in The Roman Catholic Church of the Sacred Heart & St Aldhelm, Westbury, at 11.30am on 1st February. The service provides an opportunity for people to remember, give thanks and say goodbye, irrespective of what or when their loss was or their beliefs. The service includes readings, music and the option of lighting a candle. The event is run by organisations from the local churches, NHS and charities who care about those who are bereaved. These organisations, Yeatman Hospital, Weldmar Hospicecare, Marie Curie, and Cruse will take part in the service and people will be available to listen and chat afterwards over refreshments. Whatever your experience of loss you may find in this service a quiet, calm and supportive environment to say, ‘I remember and give thanks for you, a precious life – your life.’ The Sherborne Snowdrop Service, Friday 1st February, 11.30am, The Roman Catholic Church of the Sacred Heart & St Aldhelm, Westbury. For further details see posters or contact

130 | Sherborne Times | January 2019

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Sherborne Times January 2019  

Featuring Sherborne Prep Forest School, What's On, Family, Shopping Guide, Wild Dorset, Family, Art, History, Architecture, Interiors, Antiq...

Sherborne Times January 2019  

Featuring Sherborne Prep Forest School, What's On, Family, Shopping Guide, Wild Dorset, Family, Art, History, Architecture, Interiors, Antiq...