Page 1

Sparkling Sabres

- the ancient art of Sabrage

Amity Travel Comp Inside

‘Members Only’

- Lymington Choral Society

What’s Yours?

- new year, new hobbies


• JULY 2011 •






STYLE Free no obligation site survey and quotation Installation and building work carried out by our own craftsmen 10 year guarantee including building work and insurance Quality assurance on all products We supply and fit only approved products in line with our guarantees No risk payment terms Full planning and design service available



Tel : 01489 578833




rth R

Visit Our Showroom:




n Rd


89 Southampton Road Park gate Hampshire SO31 6AF

*On qualifying applicable orders only 2… • JULY 2011 •

intro | contents


18 18


The ringing of the Jingle bells has faded from our ears, the remains of the turkey finished; we have endured and survived the endless reviews of 2012 on the television; and now we are ready to embark on a brand new year. We have the royal birth to look forward to which will be another reason for celebration. Just out of interest and with the changes in the laws of succession - and a new birth, the new order of succession will be: 1st in line is Prince Charles, followed by Prince William as 2nd in line; 3rd will be the first child of Prince William and Kate, due this year and 4th is Prince Harry; 5th, 6th and 7th respectively are Prince Andrew and his daughters Beatrice and Eugenie: 8th is Prince Edward followed as 9th and 10th in line by his children, James and Louise; 11th is The Princess Royal. We have had a bit of rain lately and I have heard it referred to as the wettest drought in history; however, we must look on the brighter side of everything. Are the water tables full – Yes! Have we got a hosepipe ban – No! Will the cost of water go down this year – well don’t hold your breath on that one; but hopefully water won’t be the issue this year unless of course, you have been the victim of too much of it. If you are one of those unfortunate people recovering from a flood, my heart goes out to you; I am there with you waiting for my house to be repaired after some significant water damage. So a new year of positive anticipation then, the arrival of a new royal baby, recovery from economic recession and a growth in confidence – and repaired dry houses! | MANAGING EDITOR Have a wonderful and prosperous New Year.



in this issue… features 32… What’s Yours? New Year... New Hobbies...

38… Sparkling Sabres


The art of Sabrage

42… Dancing in the Street

Solent Life Magazine Tel… 01489 583800 • Fax… 01489 564549 Online… • Email…

Meet Street Musician Rob Berry

46… Member’s Only Raised voices at Lymington Choral Society


54… How the Ice is Made


Behind the scenes at the Mayflower


Dave Hill – Managing Editor Tel… 01489 583743 • Email… David Rose-Massom – Senior Journalist Email… Fiona Cooke – Contributing Writer Email…

Advertising Sales Sarah Kent Tel… 01489 584010 Email… Barbara Smith Tel… 01489 583852 Email…

Steve Walker Tel… 01489 583815 Email…

Design & Production

regulars 12… The Walk

Romsey’s Historical Treasure Chest

18… Coast & Country Winter Wonderland - the Solent in Winter

26… Art Review Check out the goodies at The Art Place

74… Out and About Photographic memories of events across the south

76… What’s On

Reviews, theatre and events coming your way

Leanne Dodd – Senior Designer Adam Barnard – Online Designer Tel… 01489 583718 Email… // Deadline for advertising copy & editorial for December issue: 14th January 2013 Published by Living Coast Media. © Copyright Solent Life 2012. All rights reserved. No part of Solent Life Magazine can be reproduced or used in any form or by any means, either wholly or in part without the prior written permission of the publisher. Whilst every effort has been made to ensure all information is correct, the publishers cannot be held responsible for any errors or omissions contained within.

JANUARY 2013 • …3

GOLD GOLD d e t n a W Platinum & Silver Bought for Cash



Jewellery Repairs | Ring Sizing

Stones Supplied and Set | Jewellery Engraved ENGRAVING ON CUPS | TROPHIES & AWARDS & GLASSWARE Watch & Clock Repairs Watch Batteries Fitted to All Makes (By Qualified Watch Repairer)

Room 8 Hair & Beauty, in the Locks Heath Centre, will be holding their annual New Year Open Day on Saturday 19th January 1.00 - 4.00pm. What will be the best Open day yet will be packed with special offers and fun. Buy 2 get 1 free on hair and beauty services. 20% discount off normal prices of Redken and Tigi hair products, Dermalogica beauty products and Jessica nail products (excludes gift sets and GHD’s. The Room 8 Artistic Team will be showcasing their latest creations and this year there will be a special Wedding and Prom feature. The model presentation being between 2.30 and 3.00pm. This year there will also be live music, free gifts, free refreshments and a free to enter raffle. Outfits for the show will be provided by Cloud 9 and flower displays and poses by Andrea Fisher at Luv Flowers, Botley. A show not to be missed!! Also, during January, Room 8 are offering half price massages and facials. Anyone having a colour in January will receive a blow dry absolutely free (all other offers excluded).

Watch Bracelets Altered

Book now to avoid disappointment, as these will be popular offers.

22c Middle Road, Park Gate, Hants SO31 7GH

For further information on the Open Day, special offers or to book an appointment call 01489 582660.

(Located at the back of Sheila Hurst’s Florist)

01489 574465 | 07745 977960

GOLD PRICE AT ITS HIGHEST EVER. SILVER AT BEST PRICE SINCE 1980 RECEIVE CASH With unexpected credit card bills and cost of living increasing. Why not sell your unwanted gold and silver jewellery, Coins / Medals/ Foreign Gold / Kruger Rands / Sovereigns / Pahlavi / Chinese Panda Maple Leaf / Dental Gold. SILVER - BRITISH OR FOREIGN COINS PRE 1947 OR PRE 1920 (Pre 1947 50% Silver Pre 1920 92.5% Silver) Old Cutlery / Cups / Trays Look for the ‘LION HALLMARK’, you will be surprised what treasures are tucked away. For Free Advice Phone Arthur on

01489 574465 or 07745 977960

Jewellery & Silversmithing courses In a beautiful setting with views over the Meon Valley, join us in our working studio to learn new skills and explore your creativity. Weekly Classes Monday or Thursday evenings 7 - 9:30pm Monday mornings 10am - 12:30pm We also offer private Next term commences early January Jewellery Parties or you can £240 for 12 weeks (plus materials) come and Make Your Own

Wedding Rings!

One Day Workshops 10am - 4pm £75 plus materials


Room 8 New Year Madness Open Day

Meon Valley Studio Warnford Hampshire

07939 533 878 • JANUARY 2013


To make sure our animals are well fed and cared for throughout the busy festive season and beyond

PLEASE HELP SUPPORT OUR WINTER WARMTH APPEAL Just £20 could help provide 40 meals for the animals here

Your gift will provide food and care for the many vulnerable, mistreated & unloved animals at the shelter some cheaply discarded like wrapping paper on Christmas morning Please send your donation to Vanessa Eden, Stubbington Ark Animal Shelter, 174-176 Ranvilles Lane, Fareham PO14 3EZ 01329 666916 (Cheques made payable to RSPCA Solent Branch)

ng i d d We Prom & ture F e a ay 19th

3 rd Satuuary 201 Jan 0-3pm 2.3

You are invited to...

OUR NEW YEAR OPEN DAY MADNESS Saturday 19th January 2013 . 1pm - 4pm


l 3 for 2 special offers

l 20% discount on retail products* l Free gifts

l Free to enter raffle l Live music

l Free refreshments

l Model presentation by the Room 8 artistic team with a special wedding & prom feature *excluding ghd products

Visit us at 8 Locks Heath Centre, Locks Heath, Southampton SO31 6DX 01489 582660 JANUARY 2013 • …5


y r a u SALE EVER n a J J

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Fitted Bedrooms

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Sale starts Saturday 5th January 2013

“Be early. Don’t miss the bargains” Telephone: 01489 878300 Email: The Rumpus, St Clairs Farm, Wickham Road, Droxford, Hampshire SO32 3PW Retirement and Investment Solutions is a trading name of Meon Valley Financial Planning Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Services Authority. FSA Registration No: 185205.

66A West Street, Fareham PO16 0JN Tel: 01329 281889


AWARDED CURRY CHEF OF THE YEAR 2012 - 2013 It is the first award that Chef Kowsar Miah has won, and what a prestigious award to begin with; Curry Chef of the Year. The annual award is presented by one of the UK’s leading curry magazines. Kowser took over as chef from his father, who has successfully been in charge of the kitchens at MOWCHAK TANDOORI since 1989. His speciality dish, of which he is very proud, is tandoori murgh masallam, which consists of chicken, lamb mince and egg. After receiving his award Chef Miah said he was very happy and that the award ceremony was a most interesting experience as he got to see how the other competitors prepared their dishes.



JANUARY 2013 • …7

Exclusive Promotion 40% OFF Roman Showers




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Visit our 8,000 sq ft Showroom at: Unit 13, Solent Trading Estate, Shamblehurst Lane South, Hedge End, Soton (J7 M27) SO30 2FQ

Tel: 01489 788369 10… • JANUARY 2013





Free Parking

Fabulous glittering array at

The Petersfield Antiques Fair

To mark the 40th year of the Petersfield Antiques Fair, a superb selection of all things tempting will be on show as we start February, in the Festival Hall at Petersfield. The Petersfield Antiques Fair is a busy event attracting collectors from across the south of England. Organised by Penman Fairs from East Sussex, the fair runs for three days, Friday to Sunday, and there is something for everyone with 42 dealers from across Britain showing a wide range of fine quality pieces at prices from less than £50 to more than £10,000. Every exhibit is vetted for quality and authenticity. Fine period furniture, silver, jewellery, porcelain, Chinese blue & white, oils, watercolours, portrait miniature, scent bottles, sculpture, bronze sculpture, Persian rugs, engravings, art books and much more are always on sale There will be jewellery specialists from London, Shropshire, Norfolk and Cheshire, and to tempt the men, vintage watches from Trivette – plus some fine clocks from Olde Time of Norfolk. Paintings will vary from early portraits through 19th century watercolours to some compelling modern paintings from Neville Contemporary Art. There will also be miniature portraits from the specialist Cynthia Walmsley, with more on show with Violet from Wales, who brings a bit of everything, alongside the walking canes in which her husband specialises. The Fair is always busy in the mornings, so Penmans are offering Free Entry for Solent Life readers from 2pm to 5pm daily. The Festival Hall, Petersfield, Hampshire GU31 4AE Admission: £3.00 Times: Friday 3rd February 10.30am - 6pm Saturday 4th February 10.30am - 6pm Sunday 5th February 10.30am - 5pm Organised by: Penman Fairs . 01825 744 074

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JANUARY 2013 • …11

the | walk

Romsey’s Historic Treasure Chest Words & images by David Rose-Massom

This month our Solent Life walk begins long before William the Conqueror packed his suitcase and headed for a long vacation on these shores; our first steps are taken in 907 when the King was Edward the Elder, son of the Saxon King Alfred, yes he of burnt cake legend, and the first nuns under the leadership of Edward’s daughter Ethelflaeda settled in Romsey. Ethelflaeda was the abbess at the turn of the first millennia and it is said she chanted her psalms at night while standing naked in the River Test; well on our travels we see nothing quite so bold but we do get a brief glimpse into the fascinating history of this quaint market town. In Market Place stands the statue of Lord Palmerston and he looks imperiously down along The Hundred, the main shopping thoroughfare of the town. Palmerston was born at nearby Broadlands in 1784, and he was a well respected statesman who served twice as Prime Minister in the mid-19th century. To his left, among many other lovely buildings, is the Conservative Club and jutting out from its frontage is a wrought iron sign bracket with a macabre past. The club is built on the site of the old Swan Inn; at one time Romsey had more pubs per capita than any other town in England, and the sign bracket was used during the Civil War to hang two of Cromwell’s soldiers. Thankfully it now holds a pub-style sign with the image of a swan painted on it. With Palmerston’s back behind us the walk enters Church Street and next door to the Abbey Hotel stands a lone, elderly, building that was once Moody’s Gun Shop; the old advertisement for its services still just visible on the red brickwork. It is now a small, but interesting, museum and the town’s Heritage Centre. The Heritage Centre encompasses three buildings that contain 750 years of history that date from the 13th Century; King John’s House and Garden, a tranquil place – the house 12… • JANUARY 2013

itself was once the main building in a major medieval complex and has some wonderful features, including the roof timbers, graffiti cut into the medieval plaster and a rare bone floor. Then there is the Tudor cottage; a late Tudor/early Jacobean timber-framed house. The room on the upper floor has now been furnished to give a flavour of the period, while the lower room is Miss Moody’s Tudor Tea Room, a quaint place to stop for refreshment. The ‘old gunshop’ has been reconstructed upstairs, using original fixtures, fittings and display items, while William Moody and his sister wait to greet you in their recreated parlour. Across the road and the highlight of the walk stands magnificent and strong; the Abbey is an imposing edifice and if you happen to be standing outside by the entrance doors on a sunny morning, watch for the light shining through the stained glass windows to your left. The Abbey remains the largest parish church in Hampshire but has not always been in such a beautiful state and, as with many similar fine religious buildings that were lost under the general dissolution of the monasteries, instigated by Henry VIII after his final break with Rome in the late 1530′s. Romsey Abbey also suffered as it was suppressed, its nuns dispersed and, in 1539, the Lady Chapel was demolished. It was however saved for following generations when in 1544 the townspeople were allowed to buy the building for £100 to be used as their parish church. The Abbey then suffered further damage during the English Civil War when, in 1643, Parliamentary troops entered

the | walk

the Abbey, pulling up the seats and destroying the organ. Probably why they hung two of them in the square! Inside the Abbey it is an impressive sight with some beautiful stained windows, some wonderful tombs, including one of a two year old girl, and magical acoustics if you happen to be there when music is being performed. On the exterior walls is well weathered statue of Christ on the cross, with the hand of God carved above Christ’s head. Also if you look carefully on the north transept of the abbey there is a small fertility symbol feature called the Sheila-na-Gig, otherwise known as ‘the constipated nun’. Out through the Jubilee Gate and turn left under the stone arch of the United Reform Church and into Abbey Water, where the moat like stream runs. This was one of two streams that powered water mills; in its past Romsey’s wealth came from the preparation of wool and the tanning of leather. This little circulatory diversion takes in some charming houses that seem to put a stamp on the town’s quaint image. Now in The Meads, where a beautiful sundial sits atop a pretty cottage and Alms Houses built in 1807 curve gently beyond well-tended gardens and our walk leads down to War Memorial Park. A bridge crosses the broad and fast moving River Test, the sound of the running stream is as intoxicating as its view. Poppy wreaths still surround the white stone memorial; and behind it is an empty and traditional style bandstand. On a cold winter’s day, the park is all but deserted, except for one family feeding ducks that waddle toward the children in search of the offered bread crumbs; come spring time and it is always busy with families, children and locals enjoying its lovely surroundings. The reminder of war stands near the refreshment kiosk where a Japanese gun sits, now silent. It was presented to the town by Lord Mountbatten of Burma in recognition of the sacrifices of the town during the two World Wars. Depending on how far you wish to walk, and how much history you can take, your day could include Middle Bridge Street, which leads to a stone arched bridge where a civil war battle once took place. Or, a further walk along the Test to stand where salmon once leapt up the mill race on the way to their spawning grounds. No matter which route you take or how long you walk around Romsey you will find some fascinating fact or a piece of trivia about this historic and bustling place. For my winter stroll I finished by walking up Bell Street, following the path where the body of King Rufus, was carried to his funeral in Winchester after his death by an arrow shot by Sir Walter Tyrell while hunting in the New Forest. As you will discover, there is something of interest around every corner! JANUARY 2013 • …13

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3 MONTHS LEISURE MEMBERSHIP FROM JUST £99* Kick start your New Year’s resolution today. Whether its part of a new life plan, a specific health and fitness goal or just a great way to enrich your leisure time, we’ll devise a programme to suit your goals and support you all the way. With first class facilities and unrivalled personal service you’re sure to reach your goals. Indoor Pool • Cardiovascular Gym • Sauna • Steam Room • Spa Bath • Weights Suite • Aerobics Studio • Three Tennis Courts • Zest Café Bar • The Retreat Spa • MAKE MEON VALLEY, A MARRIOTT HOTEL & COUNTRY CLUB YOUR NEW BEST FRIEND FOR 2013 Call 01329 836 831, pop in or visit for more details.

Meon Valley, A Marriott Hotel & Country Club Sandy Lane, Shedfield, Southampton, SO32 2HQ *Terms and conditions apply. Offer only applicable during January and February 2013. Admin fees and other terms and conditions may apply.

JANUARY 2013 • …15

l l a y l n If o s n o s s e l h i s t oryd be a s cou l a s n u f h c u m

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JANUARY 2013 • …17

coast & country

Words & images by David Rose-Massom

We live in a strange part of the UK, in that we almost get our own micro-climate here on the central part of the south coast. Some years the rest of the country can be three feet deep in snow while within a few miles radius around Southampton, we can be basking in temperatures that tempt us with thoughts of an early spring. That said when snow does arrive, when it is crisp, pristine white and coating coast and country it can turn an already beautiful region into a stunning fresh landscape and seascape which can invigorate my soul both as a lover of our Solent Life region and as a photographer. A heavy fall of snow overnight and an early morning trip to the beach or the woods and your footprints will be the first across the terrain, unless of course you happen upon the deep cloven hoof-prints of deer or the dog like tracks of fox. Also, while we hunker down in front of a blazing fire, leftover turkey sandwich prepared and peruse holiday brochures filled with images of sunshine and blue seas; the wildlife around us are busy seeking out food under the snow drifts. Amazingly squirrels, who do not hibernate but just slow down and stay in the warm a little more, can recall where they hid most of their larders when the weather was better and the food plentiful. It is also the time for many creatures to seek out mates and nesting sites in readiness for spring births and hatchings. The little robin, his red breast beaming out like a beacon, has become the image of winter for many of us. It is not just the

18‌ • JANUARY 2013

frost and snow that make his breast look so bright however; at this time of year he is seeking out a missus with which to mate, and is beginning to find nesting materials, so his red plumage is at its brightest to show him off at its best and in his most handsome suit. Local climate differences are not always a good thing; in London a winter 60 years ago in just four days took the lives of 12,000 people, the culprit was a yellow green fog mixed with industrial smoke; Smog! It was so thick conductors walked in front of their buses with torches to try and see the way and in cinemas and theatres the choking smog crept into the buildings and stopped people seeing what was on the screen and stage; and yet the crane operators in London Docks said they could see clear skies above the thick blanket of smog that they were looking down upon. Thankfully here on the south coast we have mostly gentle misty mornings, especially those of us living close to harbours like Portsmouth and we awake to the repetitive honk and blast of the fog horn. The wintery sunrise creeps through the mist to bring into view shadowy yachts at their moorings

coast & country

the mist to bring into view shadowy yachts at their moorings as photographers, part hidden in the same mist, place their cameras on tripods and alter their exposures as they try and record the spectral scenes. Hampshire, because of its position, does have a milder climate than most other areas of the country. The climate is stabilised somewhat by the effects of the sea and the county does have a higher than average annual temperature, lower average rainfall and a higher than average amount of sunshine; not a bad place to live then. During autumn and winter, the region is an ideal stopping off point for migratory birds, whether they are heading north from Africa or south from the arctic regions. One of the highlights that can be seen along the coast at this time of year, are the massive flocks of Brent Geese that fill our skies. One strange anomaly of the winter months is the roe deer, they mate during the rut in autumn, the same as other deer breeds and their gestation period is still nine months, meaning that the young are born in the spring; but the embryo only needs five months of growth. This means that for four months of the

gestation period the foetus is dormant, waiting for the right time to put in an appearance. Nature is a clever thing that adapts to the climate and surroundings. Snow is a little like Marmite, either loved or hated, as a photographer and as a grandparent with a five year old grandson I have to say I love the snow. There is no more fun than enjoying crisp, cold snow with a child or grandchild and there is no more satisfying experience than treading the first human footprints into woodland virgin snowfall and easily tracking the animals that have gone before. Snow gives us an amazing winter wonderland landscape with beautiful coastal scenes when our beaches turn to white, and superb views across field and forest – but even the most diehard fans of winter are still pleased when a week later the snow thaws and we return to the warmth of an approaching spring!

JANUARY 2013 • ‌19

20… • JANUARY 2013

These things will make you a God or Goddess of the Kitchen... FACT! Kuhn Rikon Colori pairing knife

Dualit 1.5L Jug Kettle black trim.

Joseph Joseph ‘Nest 9’ set

Waring Pro Stand Blender Retro green Joseph Joseph ‘Elevate Carousel’

Joseph Joseph Index Advance Chopping Boards

Alessi ‘Big Love’ Ice Cream Bowls

Kitchenaid Artisan Stand Mixer - Raspberry Ice

Le Creuset 20cm Cast Iron Casserole - Cassis

South Coast taking care to new Heights

- New £6m High-end quality delivered by Best-in-class care home Hamble Heights, a new luxury nursing & residential care home based in Park Gate, Southampton, will be opening its doors in January 2013, fusing the highest degrees of residential care, specialist dementia care, and nursing care all under one roof. Run by TLC (Tender LifeCare), Hamble Heights has taken three years in conceptualisation/construction with a vision of creating a “home from home” environment. An investment of over £6 million has been incurred to ensure that every aspect of care can be delivered, in the best possible quality environment, by top quality trained staff. The entirely purpose-built property will become home to 60 residents, each with their own light spacious room and large en-suite bathroom - all of which are full wet rooms. Set over 3 floors, residents will have access to flexible state of the art lounges, bistro, hairdressing salon and quiet library. A number of rooms have private gardens, to compliment the sun terrace and sensory communal landscaped garden. Expertly trained staff will be on hand to assist with discretionary stimulating activities, including specially designed programmes to aid the care of those suffering with dementia. General Manager of Hamble Heights, Moira Baxter, said, “Everything we do at Hamble Heights is centred on our people, and we are so proud of what we have built for our residents. Every aspect of delivering exceptional care has been thought through in the smallest of details – right from the fabulous food that will be on offer from our top trained chefs, to the beautiful, spacious rooms, all set in the most elegant yet homely surroundings. We really do mean when we say in our slogan ‘You’re Home!’ and we look forward to delivering the very best in care in the finest building.” Hamble Heights have also devised revolutionary yet sensible and affordable ways for the elderly to fund their care. Mrs Baxter explains: “Funding care fees can be a major worry not just to our residents, but also to their families. We are always happy to come to your home, meet you and your family, explain how the private and State fees system works and hopefully find a simple way forward. It’s just another way in which we seek to go that extra mile to give all our residents and their families’ peace of mind” For more information about Hamble Heights, please visit our website



you’re welcome . . . “ Every effort has been made to create a warm, welcoming sense of village community... our home is your home.”

• A beautiful, purpose-built care home designed with our residents in mind • First class dementia, nursing and residential care from our highly experienced team • Large, individual rooms that are spacious, airy and bright • Each room has its own en-suite wet room • And our packages can make the fees surprisingly affordable

Moira Baxter General Manager

Pop in for a chat or give us a call on:

01202 545968

71-73 Botley Road, Park Gate, Southampton SO31 1AZ | JANUARY 2013 • …21



All coins wanted. I will buy British or foreign coin collections. Any quantity, all considered. Pre 1947 and 1920 silver coins. Any condition.

All Campaign Medals, Swords & Daggers, Masonic Items, British & Foreign Coins GINGER BEERS MARBLE BOTTLES (CODD’S) POT LIDS, POISONS ETC MEDALS & COINS WANTED


Solent Day Care Days you want to remember… FUN SAFE STIMULATING COMPANY

Do you need a break? Do your carers need a break? ● We can of fer you that deserved rest and look af ter your loved ones to the highest standard. ● We can collect you from your home and return you at the end of the day. ● We provide a full meal at lunch time and snacks and drinks during the day when you are at the centre. ● All inclusive with a set day rate with no hidden cost. ● We provide care for age groups 18 to 100 plus half day and hourly rates are available on request. ● We are a person centred day care and provide activities to meet all needs of the individuals attending. ● All staf f have NVQ qualifications in care.

The centre is run by Mrs. Jan Loman (Cooper) who has 28 years experience in all fields of care. The centre has the following facilities: Wheelchair access • disabled toilets • sleep/medical room We have pool tables • darts • cards • dominoes • baking aromatherapy • indoor golf • skittles • horse racing • bingo and much much more.

Tel: 02392 522773 for more information 22… • JANUARY 2013

FAMOUS FISH & CHIP RESTAURANT AND TAKE-AWAY MOTHER KELLY’S UNIQUE FISH & CHIP RESTAURANT AND TAKE-AWAY IS OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK 11.30AM - 11PM. ● All fish skinned and boned ● Traditional grilled breakfast served daily 8am-11.30am



Tel 01243 375859 Coach parties by appointment • Large orders up to 250 portions DELIVERED FREE





A gift shop selling more than you might think • Open 7 days a week Come and visit!

tended x E e l a as S Christmve up to 50% Sa

Silver Jewellery ~ ‘Jelly Cat’ ~ ‘Lily Flame’ ~ ‘Spaceform’ ~ Scarves ~ Handbags

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Telephone: 02392 553701

Monday to Friday 9:00am - 5:00pm / Saturday 9:30am - 5:30pm / Sunday 11:00am - 4:00pm. JANUARY 2013 • …23

We are looking for prospective adopters with some experience of supporting children and are particularly keen to hear from those who are willing to learn about therapeutic re-parenting. Call us today to find out more about adopting with Hampshire and being an adoptive parent.




0845 6035620

with Hampshire . . .

24… • JANUARY 2013

THE NEW YEAR, THE NEW SMOKE FREE YOU Stopping smoking is the best thing you can do for your health, your looks and your wealth. Giving up smoking can be tough, but by getting support whilst quitting, you can quadruple your chances of staying smoke free for life. For free advice, help and support visit your local Everetts Pharmacy.


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THE NEW YEAR, THE NEW SMOKE FREE YOU We all know the damage smoking does to your health and your wallet. But did you know how immediate the benefits of quitting are? After 20 minutes of stopping your blood pressure and pulse return to normal. After 24 hours carbon monoxide leaves your body and your lungs will have started to clear out the tar that’s been clogging them up. After 72 hours your breathing is easier and you have more energy. Once you have decided to stop smoking it’s good to get support from friends and family as well as your pharmacy or doctor. It’s always easier to quit with support. Boost your chances further by using Nicotine Replacement Therapy. There are many products on the market, so seek advice from our staff for which is best for you. This can help you with the inevitable withdrawal symptoms. In the first few weeks you may want to avoid drinking alcohol and situations where you know you could be weak. Count how much cash you are saving, you will be amazed at just how much money you were spending and make a plan to reward yourself. Giving up smoking can be tough, but by getting support whilst quitting you can quadruple your chances of staying smokefree for life. For free advice, help and support visit your local Everetts Pharmacy. Find your local store at JANUARY 2013 • …25

solent | artist


In days gone by, original art was something elitist, a bit like joining a golf club, it was something done only by people with money and the confidence to walk into such an establishment. Words by David Rose-Massom Things have changed however, and original art has not only become affordable but it is being sold in shops, galleries and on markets where even the art appreciation novice can purchase something they like. We now have street markets across the region, where local artists can exhibit and sell their creations and of course, we have the established galleries alongside our high street shops, like Hiscock Gallery of Southsea or White Dog Gallery in Lee-on-theSolent. But now, there are also new places springing up, with entrepreneurs surrounding themselves with work from artist friends and putting their work on show and for sale; one such shop/gallery has opened its doors in Gosport and is quite simply called The Art Place; and it does what is says on the tin! Rich Oakes is the young proprietor. “I suppose I have gone from struggling artist to struggling gallery owner,” Rich told Solent Life when we visited his shop, The Art Place, shortly before Christmas. “I studied Fine Art at Portsmouth University, graduating in 2005, and have always had an interest in art, as well as music. I realised I was not going to be a rock star and so I opened the gallery. “My wife and I lived above the cake shop on the corner of this road and we noticed this place was up for rent - when we realised it was the whole building, including the flat above and the cellar below; we jumped at the chance!” The building also comes with a walled yard at the back which, by this coming spring, should be converted into a café courtyard. The gallery has been arranged to show a mix of original art work in the front part of the shop and around all the walls, while in the back room, a friend and business colleague has set up a vintage clothing 26… • JANUARY 2013

sales room. This also provides a slot for Rich to keep going with his love of music by selling original vinyl recordings. Despite looking much younger, Rich is in his early thirties. “I had a proper job, spending 17 years in a double glazing factory, but really I wanted to get back to working with art and so began to attend arts and craft fairs,” he continued. “By visiting those shows, it did not take long for the thought process to lead toward opening my own small gallery. Many of my artist contacts and friends from the art and craft shows were excited by the idea and I now have around 30 artists, all from different genres and skills, who I can call on to exhibit their work. “In addition to the regular contributors to my exhibition space, I regularly want to showcase the work of a featured artist. So I have reserved one long wall which goes right through the shop, here, an artist can display their work, at a reasonable rental for the space, on a weekly basis. Should they wish, I can organise a launch party for them to celebrate and promote their show. This has two effects on the business, first there is an ever changing display of quality work and secondly, the display along that long wall leads visitors through the gallery.” When we visited The Art Place, the latest work from a very talented artist, Dominic Joyce was featured on the ‘long wall’. It leads from the small front part of the gallery where original art works, mounted prints, cards and handmade gifts can be seen and purchased, through to the vintage clothing and vinyl records, displayed in front of an old-fashioned, but working juke box. Dominic’s work is very ‘pop-art’ with images of Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe hanging among some superb fashion inspired imagery. The work would grace anyone’s home walls.

solent | artist

“I don’t just see this as a gallery but more of a dropping off place for artists and lovers of original art,” Rich continued to explain with great enthusiasm. “People do still seem to be intimidated by the thought of walking into an art gallery, even now I see people hesitate at the door, unsure of whether to walk across the threshold or not. I think there is still a fear with some people of not knowing about art so they do not know what to buy, when all it is, is a case of buying what you like! “In the future I see this place coming into its own. In the summer with the courtyard finished, it will just be a nice place to come and enjoy art with like-minded people; to have somewhere to be comfortable and enjoy the magical feeling of choosing original works of art produced by local artists. “I don’t want to do the ‘normal’ or traditional version of what people think ‘real art’ is, there are plenty of galleries that can do

the watercolours and the landscapes but I am keen on promoting works, not necessarily edgy or avant-garde and not being stuffy; works of art that are fun.” To emphasise the popularity of the work he likes to exhibit, Rich explained that one of his artists has just had a piece picked up by a major furniture retailer who has printed 60,000 copies of the image to be sold across the UK. “There is a narrow gap, narrower than many people think, between the avant-garde and the everyday and if I can get people to come through the door and visit a gallery like mine for the first time then I will be achieving something.” ART FOCUS S P O N S O R S H I P

Our Artist Review is kindly sponsored by WHITE DOG GALLERY 8 Milvil Court, Milvil Road Lee-on-the-Solent Hampshire, PO13 9LY 023 9255 2255.


Dominic Joyce - Pop Art Artist from Portsmouth exhibiting at The Art Place until Fri 18th January. The Art Place also has art classes which are held next door at Goodwins photography, who also run photography classes; Dan Williams - Artist in Fine Art - takes them - Tuesdays 7 - 9pm starting 26th February - 19th March in pencil sketching. Or later in the year Acrylic on Canvas 26th March - 16th April.

THE ART PLACE 14 North Cross St Gosport, Hampshire 07775 435 467

Glass! Often overlooked, but an essential part of the framing process (unless you’re framing an original oil or acrylic). By glazing your artwork, you protect it against the elements (dust, dirt etc.) but did you know how much choice there is? Firstly, regular clear glass is 2mm thick. Then there’s diffused or non-reflective glass which works well at deflecting any glare. However, this glass is etched and can make the image appear dulled and less clear to the eye. The clearest glass is AR glass (sometimes known as water white glass) which has an Anti Reflective coating, much like some spectacles. This is so clear; you can hardly see that it’s glazed at all! An excellent alternative to glass is acrylic, recommended for extremely large pieces of artwork being safer and lighter. If you are putting the glass straight onto the artwork, acrylic may be a better option as glass may attract moisture. Acrylic may not be best for certain artwork like pastel or charcoal drawings and as it’s not as hardy as glass, it is more likely to get scratched.

JANUARY 2013 • …27


Lee On Solent is proud to be the 7th branch of Ambassador Travel The local independent specialist opened on the 27th June under the Management of Chris Dewey. Ambassador Travel has its own tour operations in South Africa and the Seychelles and is part of the Advantage travel network. Ambassador has branches in Oxon, Aylesbury, Cheam, Wendover, Wells and Gillingham.

We are fully ABTA and ATOL bonded for your protection

LYNN MARTIN JOINS THE EVER EXPANDING TEAM AT AMBASSADOR TRAVEL, LEE ON SOLENT... With Christmas now well and truly behind us, now is the time to be thinking about giving yourself a well earned rest. Ambassador Travel opened in June 2010 under the Management of Chris Dewey. Chris has worked in the travel industry for over thirty years and is joined in the Lee On Solent branch by Catherine Wassell, who has a wealth of experience having recently travelled to Malaysia and Borneo. Cath is also our Australian and New Zealand specialist. We are very pleased to announce that Lynn Martin, and her invaluable experience, has joined us. Lynn previously worked as the Branch Manager of Davis World Travel in Portchester. We are very excited to have Lynn back with her old colleagues again. Having just returned from the Caribbean, she would love to talk to you about her recent experiences there. We also welcome Milly Turner who joins us on her apprenticeship. All the staff are specialists in the cruise sector. We find that living so near to Southampton and of course the new Portsmouth terminal, that cruising is a big part of our business. We deal with P&O, Cunard and Princess cruise lines. 28‌ • JANUARY 2013

We also book Fred Olsen, Swan Hellenic, Voyages of Discovery, Saga cruises, Norwegian and Royal Caribbean, Celebrity and many more too. As your local independent agent we are not tied into selling our own in house products. We can advise you on the holiday that is right for you. In our Lee on Solent branch we also can tailor make itineraries for you, for example if you are thinking of travelling to the Far East, just email or phone through your plans and we will do the rest for you. This applies to anywhere in the world. We also understand that not all clients want to travel abroad so we are pleased to be agents for many UK coach companies, such as : LUCKETTS, ANGELA, WOODS, ALPHA, GRAND UK and SHEARINGS. If you fancy a short city break or a holiday in the channel islands we are happy to assist you with this. Ambassador Travel are part of the Advantage Managed service which gives us massive buying power, together with the security of ABTA and ATOL behind us. This also makes us very competitive in all markets. We are also very happy to assist you with the good old fashioned package holiday. We have seen a recent return to the package holiday last year as changes in the ATOL laws has made it dangerous to DIY packages. Our customers want to make sure that they are protected.


FOR AMAZING CRUISE DEALS MEET THE TEAM... Catherine Wassell - Assistant Manager Cath is our Australian, New Zealand and South Africa specialist. Cath started in travel in 1995 and has also travelled extensively throughout the world: Singapore, Bankgkok, Dubai, Abu Dhabi, Antigua, Jamaica, Bahamas, Dominican Republic, Turks and Caicos, Puerto Rico, Barbados, Croatia, Crete, Iceland, Prague, Rome & Canada.

Lynn Martin - Senior Travel Consultant Lynn has a wealth of experience to share, having visited the following: Austria, Switzerland, Croatia, Corsica, Cyprus, Tenerife, Lanzarote, Malta, Gozo, Turkey, Hong Kong, The Cayman Islands, Las Vegas, Hawaii, The Bahamas, Turks & Caicos, Dominican Republic, Tobago. Jersey, Cherbourg, Calais, Brussels, Bruges, Paris, Disneyland Paris, Venice, Athens, Corfu, Crete, Majorca, and more...

Chris Dewey - Manager Chris has been in travel for over thirty years. He has travelled extensively throughout Europe. Chris`s favourite destination is the Caribbean where he has travelled many times and his favourite island is Antigua. They say there is a different beach for every day of the year! Call in for a chat today. I look forward to welcoming you in our new branch soon.



Solent Funeral Services Our Family Serving Your Family

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10 YEAR ANNIVERSARY 2002 - 2012

A place of peace & tranquillity

Loved Ones Remembered in Special Service Portchester Memorial Gardens recently held their annual Christmas Memorial Service on Sunday 16th December. Over 1,000 people attended the event which was held in their lovely lake and temple area.

meet the team


on production of this advert (at order stage) offer ends 31st January 2013

Left to right: Pam Julie Hind (Direc Garnett, Steve Payne, tor), Oliver Pec k, Katy Watso n

Six acres of beautiful landscaped gardens offering a final resting place for the burial of your loved one’s cremated remains along with an individual memorial. Location: Please note that we are not part of the Crematorium or their Garden of Remembrance. Follow our green signs. Upper Cornaway Lane . Portchester . PO16 8NF 01329 828250 .

30… • JANUARY 2013

Twenty four white doves were released at the start of the service followed by the carol, “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear” sung by the Fareham Philharmonic choir. Rowans Hospice Chaplain, Lance Blake, gave a reading before the lighting of the remembrance candle which was floated on the lake with a minute’s silence to remember the deceased. Further carols were sung before those gathered were invited to place a mini lantern on their loved one’s individual grave site. Complimentary mince pies and mulled wine were served with the help of the Fareham Support Group from the Rowans Hospice. This year 2013 calendars were also sold, featuring stunning scenes of the memorial gardens. Katy Watson, Office Manager, said “It was a lovely day and very well supported by all our helpers and volunteers. It is nice to know that at a very sad time of year we are still able to offer comfort to the bereaved families”. If you would like to purchase a calendar for £3.99 each, then please contact the office on 01329 828250.


T: 01329 220710 M: 07702 441278



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solent | feature

Ask anyone what they do or who they are and they will respond with teacher, postman, mother... soldier, sailor, or even candle stick maker... but that is only half the story; for many of us work is what we do to pay the bills, we may enjoy it but it only fills part of our lives. It is not where our passion lies, and passion is what gets us out of bed in the morning and keeps us going day after day. So perhaps the question should be “What do you love to do, what makes you feel alive?” The chances are that an Accountant will not tell you it is accounts that get his juices flowing, but Cryptozoology, and a Software Designer will reveal far more about himself when he tells you that he spends his weekends Spelunking. For it is the things that we choose to do, that we love to do, that defines us and at times can make life worth living. It is our hobbies and pastimes which round us out, that make us interesting and something more than a soldier or a sailor. Hobbies also serve as an antidote to the rest of our life. When every day feels like groundhog day; work, kids, shopping, cooking, cleaning, T.V., bed; the knowledge that the weekend will be spent re-enacting Pickett’s Charge at the Great Reunion of 1913 can get us through the week. The New Year can be a time when we decide to try something fresh, and the wonderful thing about hobbies is that there are so many to choose from. Yet we tend to feel we are limited, and look no further than our local gym when we make our New Year’s resolution to shed some pounds and rediscover our abs. However, as we join the rush to the door, we know in our heart of hearts that this is doomed to failure. We’re there for duty rather than pleasure, and the hours on the treadmill can feel just like

32… • JANUARY 2013

that; so our enthusiasm wanes, our new gym clothes get hidden in the back of the wardrobe and we return to our slothful ways! So it is worth thinking outside the box and taking the time to find an activity that engages not just your body but your desire and interest. The real benefits in any hobby come from the enjoyment, and you do not have to limit yourself to one; after all what better way is there to relax after a day of sky diving, than to spend the evening carving egg shells? Almost anything can become a hobby....and have a fantastic name. So the Accountant who is also a Cryptozoologist spends his time attempting to track down the Loch Ness Monster, or any other animal that has not yet been proven to exist. Do we find hobbies or do they find us? Sometimes you can see something which grabs your attention and gives you that itch to try it for yourself. No doubt many of those who were glued to the Olympics this summer have gone on to take up a sport which enthralled them. And whilst we may think that our choices are limited to the norm such as golf, sailing or tennis, the range of 26 contested sports seen during the Olympics shows that the opportunity is there to explore something more diverse. Whether it is archery or wrestling, nowadays there is a club for almost everything and the internet can be a fantastic resource for finding like minded enthusiasts. All welcome beginners and many

have equipment available to borrow, so you can try before you buy. With the sea so close we are lucky in this area to have not only sailing clubs, but a club for anything water related, from diving to kayaking, and Portsmouth boasts a Synchronised Swimming Club if you fancy dipping a toe in... or out! Whilst none of us may master a new sport to the standard of our top sportsmen, we can derive an enormous amount of satisfaction and pleasure from learning a new skill. My son has recently taken up Judo and I am hoping that he will realise for himself that the effort he puts in to become proficient at the sport will also help him to not only feel

good about himself, but to discover just how much he is capable of. Isn’t this an important life lesson for children that they can find out that the greatest fulfilment is derived not from those things which come easily, but from those which require hard work and discipline? But not all hobbies have to be demanding; for those who seek a pastime that is less physically active, collecting or cataloguing may hold appeal. You may think of coins or stamps but there are those who collect some unlikely items; handcuffs, cigar bands, or sugar packets. Many happy hours can be spent collecting and rearranging almost anything, even navel fluff! JANUARY 2013 • …33

solent | feature

Words by Fiona Cooke

I believe we all have ways of expressing our inherent creativity. For some it is with music, gardening or cooking, whilst others use photography, arts or crafts. Again there are so many to choose from and the bonus is that whatever you create can be used to adorn a wall, a shelf, a window, a scrapbook, or a person.....I’m sure more than one of us will be wearing a hand knitted scarf this winter. My children and I recently discovered sock monkey making, which solves the problem of what to do with the one sock that comes out of the washing machine when two went in. It’s cheap, easy even for those who are less adept with a needle, and we can make twins if the other sock ever makes a re-appearance! But what is really telling is that the evenings when we sit and sew are free of squabbles or complaints of being bored. I recently read an article about an artist who sweeps the floor for hours to clear his mind and allow the ideas and images that lead to his eventual creations to flow. There is a meditation within a repetitive activity that soothes the soul, and knitting, sewing and crocheting are perfect ways to let go of day to day concerns. Whilst some hobbies are solitary, many are social, and that can be as important as the activity. New friendships can be made through a shared interest, and for some the Bridge or Gardening Club can be a lifeline. The University of the Third Age gives anyone who is no longer in full time work the opportunity to be part of a group activity or learn something new, whether it is a language, computing skills or embroidery. U3A clubs can be found world-wide and are self-help; self managed learning co-operatives which offer one the opportunity to learn not for qualifications, but for fun. And we are never too old for that!

34… • JANUARY 2013

We may be limited in the choices we have with our work, but in our free time we can follow our hearts, and one of life’s pleasures is to spend time lost in an activity which truly engages us. Life really is what you make of it and getting out there and trying something new can add a little


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Luxury for less during January!  mazing bargains on lingerie, A swimwear & nightwear from Prima Donna, Fantasie, Freya, Fauve, Marie Jo, Triumph, Passionata, Miraclesuit and many more. Visit us at our Lee-on-Solent boutique to start 2013 in style!

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New Children’s Clinic

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For advice and appointments telephone: T: 01329 665871 (answerphone available for out of hours) W: E:


36… • JANUARY 2013

Stubbington Natural Health Clinic has been specialising in treating a wide variety of health problems for nearly 30 years. The latest addition to our many facilities is a healthcare service for Children. Treatments available include Cranial Sacral Therapy, Homeopathy, Nutrition, Allergy Testing and Children’s Podiatry. The importance of helping children with their health at a young age is imperative. Some of the conditions we can assist with include:Sleep Problems, Hay fever, Coughs and Colds, Allergies, Eczema, Asthma, Bereavement, Anger, Behavioural Problems, Stress, Impetigo, Constipation, Diarrhoea, Learning Difficulties, Concentration Problems, Fears, Teething or Eating Problems, Verruca’s, Vaccination Problems, etc. If your child has any health issues you would like to discuss, we would love to hear from you.


Home Instead Senior Care Southampton has been delivering care in the community for nearly 3 years and the continuing growth in the client base is testimony of the unique standard of service they provide which has become the company’s hallmark. Its reputation is built on trust, reliability and professionalism. The CAREGivers who deliver the care and support to their clients are the heartbeat of the business. The company is steadily growing and seeking to recruit more people who have the passion to share their caring nature with others who need it. Mary Paddey, a CAREGiver for Home Instead Senior Care, recounts her experience. Mary switched from working for a traditional domiciliary company over two years ago which mainly serviced social services contract work to join Home Instead Senior Care. Mary says “It felt like I was coming over from the Dark Side”. Firstly this company CARES. I am not writing an advertisement for “Home Instead”. I am trying to explain how this independent company is so different from my previous employer. The whole ethos of “Home Instead” is about the individual – the CAREGiver as well as the client. I was seeking part-time, flexible work. This role seemed ideal for me as I could nominate the days and times I worked so it would fit around my other commitments. Time was taken to get to know me, my strengths and limitations. I received much more comprehensive training, feedback and support on a regular basis and we all seem to be part of one big team. We are introduced to the client before we begin and we may “shadow” another CAREGiver to learn routines first before taking over a call. What is different in the way this company works is that it is the client who is in charge and decides when and what happens. If they fancy a trip to the shops…then we go to the shops. How about some fish and chips by the sea? Why not. Can’t see the buttons on the telephone? How about if I set up the quick dial buttons for you? Gone are the fixed tasks and rigid schedule. The very fact that calls are a minimum of an hour long permits us to offer the relaxed, unhurried companionship that is such a vital part of caring for the elderly. We get to know our clients really well, we have a laugh, swap the gossip, share our lives. How rewarding is that! Now I am about to hang up my apron once and for all and join the ranks of the retired. I want to try and reassure my fellow retirees that there are people who still care out there. Not all care companies are the same, working for Home Instead Senior Care has been a really positive and fulfilling experience. Contact Home Instead Senior Care Southampton for more information on our services or becoming a CAREGiver today. or phone 01489 559007.

The Smart Fish Bar restaurant comes to Lee-on-Solent Portugese brothers Armando Manuel and Mario Brazao from Madeira expanded their business and opened their 3rd Smart Fish Bar in Lee-on-the-Solent. The Brothers have more than 20 years experience in running Fish & Chip shops across the South & South West.

Restaurant Now Open Offering an extensive menu in Lee-on-the-Solent


23 Pier Street, Lee-on-the-Solent, PO13 9LD • 02392 551166


solent | feature

SPARKLING SABRES Out in the Solent sits Spitbank Fort, a sea fortress now converted to a luxury boutique hotel, later this month guests on the fort will be able to take part in the ancient art of Sabrage; which, for the uninitiated, is the skill of opening a bottle of Champagne with just one sweep of a sabre! Words by David Rose-Massom Spitbank Fort, owned by the Clarenco Group, are inviting a small gathering of guests to attend an inauguration into the world of Sabrage as the Victorian fortress becomes a ‘Caveaux de Sabrage’. It promises to be a night of fun and extravagance which should be an event to always remember! A similar event was held back in November and was an amazing success.

The Royal Clarence Marina Departure Lounge is situated on the waterfront on Gosport and it is where guests gather before being conveyed by boat to the fort for a LaurentPerrier Champagne reception and a light lunch in the Crow’s nest; which has spectacular views of the Solent. During the afternoon enjoy an exquisite afternoon tea and a chance to explore and enjoy the secrets and history of Spitbank Fort before the evening event where a specially prepared superb four course dinner will be served and during which you will be entertained by the Order of the Golden Sabre and guests will get the opportunity to become a Sabreur. Sabrage is a swift, yet exciting, technique for opening Champagne bottles with a sabre as used on ceremonial occasions. The sabre is a cavalry sword with a curved blade, thick back, and an ornate hand guard. In Sabrage the sword slides along the body of the bottle to break the entire neck away from the bottle, leaving the bottle open and ready to pour. The force of the blade hitting the lip breaks the glass to separate the collar from the neck of the bottle. It is not the ‘sharp’ side of the blade, but instead, it is turned around using the thick, back of the curved blade. The cork and collar of the bottle remain together after separating from the neck. This technique became popular in France with the army of Napoleon, shortly after the French Revolution, when the sabre became the sword of choice of Napoleon’s light cavalry, the Hussars. Napoleon’s spectacular victories 38… • JANUARY 2013

across all Europe gave them plenty of reason to celebrate and during these parties the cavalry would open the Champagne with their sabres. Napoleon was quoted as saying, “Champagne! In victory one deserves it; in defeat one needs it!” and this may well have encouraged the practice. A Champagne sword (sabre à Champagne) is an instrument specially made for sabrage. Some swords have short blades; around 12 inches long and simply resemble large knives, although others do have longer blades. The ceremonial sabre has a blade that is completely blunt; a sharpened edge is unnecessary because in sabrage it is the impact that is important, not the sharpness. With the bottle neck held at an angle of approximately 20 degrees the sword is swept down toward the cork. The experienced sommelier can open the bottle with very little loss of Champagne; although, it is advised to allow a small flow of the bubbly in order to wash away any loose shards of glass that may be adhering to the neck. The first glass poured should also be checked for small glass shards. The impact of the sabre on this weak point at the neck creates a crack that rapidly spreads through the glass. Then once the glass is broken the momentum of the sabre and the pressure in the bottle will send the top flying, sometimes for more than 30 feet. Cheers; and those in the front had better duck! If you wish to join in this romantic and unusual event on Spitbank Fort then the cost is £1,200 per room (£600pp) and includes a light lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, bed and a Champagne breakfast, 1 bottle of house wine, and 1 bottle of champagne; based on 2 persons per room. 20% discount for first 6 rooms booked, just £1,000 per room, (£500pp). The sabrage event is on the weekend of the 19th January. for details.


The Titchfield – apartment from


The hayling – 3 bedroom 3 storey homes from


The Fareham – 3 bedroom mid-terraced homes from


Tanners Gate, Hunts Pond Road, Titchfield Common, Fareham, PO14 4PA call 08444 900222†

JAnUArY oFFers For neW YeAr moVers Tanners Gate has everything you need with a range of great offers including NewBuy*, Part-exchange** and FirstBuy¥. All perfect for a growing family. Speak to our Sales Advisers for more details.

neW YeAr neW home! MARKETING SUITE AND SHOWHOME OPEN THURSDAY TO MONDAY 10AM – 5PM OR VISIT OUR WEBSITE Imagery for illustration purposes only. **Available on all plots and developments in England, on homes worth up to £500,000. Subject to status, terms and conditions. Persimmon Homes cannot advise you on a mortgage. YOUR HOME MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON YOUR MORTGAGE OR ANY DEBT SECURED ON IT. Full details available on request. **Part-exchange is available on selected plots, subject to status, terms and conditions and using a Persimmon-nominated solicitor and/or financial adviser as necessary. Full details available on request. ¥FirstBuy is available on selected plots at selected developments, subject to status, terms and conditions. FirstBuy cannot be used in conjunction with any other scheme and is not available in Wales and Scotland. Eligible applicants will be offered an equity loan of up to a maximum of 20% of the purchase price (based on the open market value). FirstBuy customers are required to fund at least 80% of the purchase price by means of a conventional mortgage, savings and any deposit where required. FirstBuy customers must obtain their conventional mortgage from a Qualified Lending Institution. For the first five years there is no interest charged on the equity loan component. From the start of year six a monthly interest fee will be charged. This charge on an annual basis will be 1.75% of the market value of the property at the time the loan is entered into multiplied by the outstanding percentage under the equity loan. This annual fee will be uplifted in future years at a rate of (RPI + 1% p.a). The equity loan is provided by the Homes and Communities Agency and developer as a second charge. It is advisable, for a swift, smooth transaction that an IFA/Solicitor advised by Persimmon Homes is used. YOUR HOME MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON YOUR MORTGAGE AND/OR YOUR EQUITY LOAN. Full details available on request.†Calls cost 5p per minute from a BT landline. Mobile providers and other networks may vary. Details correct at time of going to press. PHSO_TannersGate_SL_264x188_Jan.indd 1

JANUARY 2013 •

21/12/2012 12:09 …39

solent | education

Wykeham House School

Girls’ School and Brand New Separate Boys’ School Opening September 2013 Open Day, Saturday 2nd February 2013, 10am to 1pm School in Action, Monday 4th February 2013, 2pm to 4pm Tel: 01329 280178

Wykeham House School, East Street, Fareham, PO16 0BW

40… • JANUARY 2013

Christmas at Wykeham House School Girls in Years 1 to 4 at Wykeham House School performed a wonderful Nativity play to friends and family on Wednesday 5 December and the Nursery and Reception classes performed their nativity on Thursday 6 December. The girls all gave fantastic performances; from Mary and Joseph to the shining stars, the three kings, the innkeeper and the shepherds and they really enjoyed putting on the performance and singing all the Christmas songs.

Christmas is a very busy season at Wykeham House. Years 5 and 6 performed a Nativity in French at the Junior Carol Service and the Senior Carol Service had an international theme, with girls giving readings in French, Spanish, Welsh, German, Greek and Swedish. Other Christmas activities include the Christmas Fayre and the Christmas Lunch where family and friends join their daughters in School. ‘Christmas at Wykeham House School is a wonderful time of year’ said Lynn Clarke Headteacher. ‘The girls and the staff put so much hard work into each of our Christmas performances and activities and the girls really enjoy taking part.’ Wykeham House School in Fareham, will next year be celebrating 100 years of providing outstanding education for girls and will from September 2013 be opening a fully separate Wykeham House School for boys. Contact Us: Telephone: 01329 280178 Email: Website:

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Take a fresh look at Fareham College Come and see what Fareham College has to offer. Situated just a 10 minute walk from Fareham train station and a 20 minute walk from the bus station, it is centrally located for students coming from across Hampshire. There is so much on offer at Fareham College, with over 130 courses covering AS/A-levels, BTECs, NVQs, Apprenticeships and Higher Education. Students can choose their programme to suit their career goals and preferred method of learning. Prospective students and their families can see all this and more at the next Open Evening on 5 February, 5-8pm. They can meet the School Liaison Team and ask them about their college experience, see all the facilities, meet the lecturers and apply for their place at Fareham College. Advice and Guidance can be sought from the Student Advisor Team who are specialists in each Faculty and can advise on each of the courses, requirements and progression. Students can also take advantage of their time at the Open Evening by booking onto the Taster Day which is on 25 February, 8.45am - 1.45pm. This event gives an insight into college life where students try out two subjects of their choosing and see the College in action. This is an ideal opportunity for those in Years 10 and 11 to see what Fareham College can offer them.

To find out more go to, find us on Facebook and Twitter, or call (01329) 815200. JANUARY 2013 • …41

Words & images by David Rose-Massom

solent | feature 42…

For many people, a busker is just someone who is maybe not good enough to get regular work as a musician; but the truth is far from that. Most are seasoned professionals who choose to play on the streets. One regular musician who plays in Winchester on many Sundays is Bluesman and street musician Rob Berry… • JANUARY 2013

“We were now in the Thatcher era and in recession - jobs were hard to come by so I headed back to Bermuda doing various jobs such as bartending and even as a bank teller. All the while I was playing with bands in the clubs which meant being out most of the night as well as working through the days. I began to hang around the local studio and in 1987 I became sound engineer at The Bermuda Sound Studios, one of the best in the world.” It was there he met and worked with Rolling Stone Keith Richard. “Because I was familiar with all the equipment I worked closely with Keith Richard’s producers and engineers; again there were some very late nights, they would arrive at around four in the afternoon and we would not leave the studio until six or seven the next morning,” Rob explained. “One day I was just ‘noodling’ (Rob’s expression for just messing around on the guitar) and Keith came into the studio; he always called me ‘son’ in his gruff voice and he got his guitar out and taught me

Long hours working in a studio began to take their toll; and still all Rob wanted to do was give up being a technician and perform in his own right. “My wife Ann was working days, I was working nights, sometimes right through the night. When a musician is paying thousands of pounds for block studio time, they keep going until they have it right and that means the hours were long and hard,” explained Rob. “Through the years I had obviously made many contacts with other musicians and so I was able to begin to do session work on the guitar for the likes of Chris White from Dire Straits, Tom Robinson and many other artists.” Rob then headed back out to Bermuda, a place where he had actually grown up, for a summer gig in the tourist resorts and Pubs. “This was definitely fun and while there, I got to jam with some of New York’s finest blues players.” Something that influenced much of the work that Rob performs and records today. From the Bermuda base there were also many trips to Florida and New York to perform. Rob admits that this lifestyle actually became too much fun and that the brief working holiday turned into a 13 year stay until, for family reasons, he needed to return to the UK in 2007. Rob’s earliest memories were growing up in the sunny climes of Bermuda. “My dad was a jazz musician and he went to the island to play in one of the big bands. At the age of six my parents stuck me on the piano, and although I recall not liking it very much the piano is a wonderful instrument for children to learn music on. “I suppose my parents were quite well off because they were able to send me here to England and to boarding school,” he continued. “A friend of mine at school had a Fender Stratocaster and I used to play it; I suppose the tools of my craft have come naturally to me. My education continued at Chichester Technical College where I studied engineering, a good pathway for university but I never did get there.

to hold just one note; saying ‘Son, just hold that one note for as long as you can until it begins to sound good’. I used to love watching him just sit there on his own, with an old five-string classical guitar playing old blues numbers.” With a family to now take care of, Rob and his wife returned to England and Rob continued his ‘day’ job as a sound engineer while still trying to play at night. Another recession hit and once again Rob was struggling to bring home an income. “It was another recession and things got tight financially so I just went down to the London Underground and gave busking a go. People just seemed to like what I was playing and threw money at me and I thought that this could work. I do seem to be making it sound easier than it was. “It is either flood or drought with the money I can earn, but when you are playing well and families out in the towns with their children stop and dance and enjoy the music it is a very worthwhile profession. One of my favourite moments is when carers bring their disabled charges nearby to listen and you watch the smiles on their faces as they listen to what you offer, that is magical.” Rob Berry enjoys being a street musician, and he also still plays with friends as part of a blues band in pubs, clubs and various venues and he has produced five solo albums, his latest being released just before Christmas, “All those years as a sound engineer have given me a great foundation for what I do now and I produce all my own albums in the studio that I have built in our bedroom.” So the next time you hear a musician playing in the street, stop a while and listen to live music; you never know you may enjoy the performance and if you do put a few coins in his collection box; it will be the cheapest music concert you have been to!

W W W. R O B B E R RY. C O M JANUARY 2013 • …43

solent | feature

The first introduction to the young Rob Berry was when his parents arranged for him to study classical piano at the age of six, but in his teens he watched a performance from blues musician Dr Feelgood and the piano was swapped for the blues guitar and that his been his instrument of choice ever since. But early in his career he was not standing and performing in front of an audience. “In the 80’s I began a career as a recording engineer at Bermuda Sound Studios and this led to engineering on Keith Richards ‘Talk is Cheap’ album,” Rob told Solent Life during a short break in Winchester precinct. “A decade or so later I was back in the UK and went to work in a top London mixing studio, ‘Swanyard Studios’, where I worked alongside some of the best producers and engineers in London, including Alan Moulder (Nine Inch Nails, My Bloody Valentine), Jazzy B (Soul to Soul), Adamski’s ‘Killer’, Bernie Sumner (New Order), Johnny Marr (Smiths) and Andy Farris ( INXS) just to name a few.”

HOTSHOTZ words by Jane Dean

Interview with…. Hot shot, ROBERT ARNOLD, MD For the past 3 years, Hampshire based entrepreneur, Robert Arnold, has been building a global brand - “Voltz International”. Initially specializing in health beverages and supplements, Voltz produce a 60ml energy shot, made up of healthy B vitamins, with zero sugar and the market in this sector has literally exploded. The ‘energy shot’ was initially marketed in the US, where it was aimed at individuals seeking to address lethargy with little liquid intake, but Rob seized on an opportunity to form a Company here in the UK. “The business plan had to be rewritten eight times, as sales exceeded expectations” he says. The idea for the drink came from his business partner Tom Allsworth, a manufacturer of beauty products for the Prince of Wales Duchy Originals range. Work on the project began in 2009 and the extensive marketing drive led Arnold to link up with fashion magazine Cosmopolitan and customised car magazine Max Power. Although Robert’s expertise and background is in financial services, he also has interests in media, print management, beverage brands and ecommerce. His three children and dog keep him active and he has always enjoyed sports & exercise, to include sailing and skiing. “It was a natural progression for Voltz to become associated, support and work with numerous sectors in the sporting domain and this has materialised in some incredible formats” says Arnold. This month alone, VOLTZ will be supporting The Fan Dance 2013, Winter Edition event which comprises of 150 individuals, from high ranking military personnel (to include police firearm team chiefs, military amputees and a good deal of war veterans), plus members of the public seeking to challenge their levels of fitness & stamina, who will be encountering a 24km mountainous route on Pen-y-Fan in the Brecon Beacons. This is the original & authentic course used by the SAS & is the yardstick used to pass the Special Forces selection programme. The energy drinks will be supplying a much needed shot to every person involved in this demanding task and competitors are taking part from all walks of life, from a College Professor in San Francisco to a lorry driver in Essex! Extreme sporting events have also embraced the drive & attitude of the Voltz brand, to include Eldorado Skiing & Snowboarding Championships, plus Shakespeare County Raceway, ARC Transatlantic Yacht Race, Team Gridlock British No. 1 Drag Racing champions and Team D3 British Drift Cars. Since Voltz have sponsored the drag racing team, ‘Team Gridlock’, in their Fiat Topolino 44… • JANUARY 2013

altered dragster, they have secured first position on the podium. “We relish the opportunity of working once again with this passionate & enthusiastic family team”, says Rob “and, Adam Price, who drives the Fiat, has shown great expertise in his driving ability, which always requires 100% concentration”.

Another popular venture is the Eldorado Skiing and Snowboarding Event, now in its 15th year, which takes place in Andorra. The event forms part of the Freeride World Tour and participants come from 20 different Countries, where they face various disciplines, in freezing conditions. Although the energy drink is produced in the UK and distributed to over 13,500 outlets, Rob adds “The company has matured very quickly with distribution contracts in the UK, Ireland, The Channel Islands, Spain, Andorra, Cyprus, Greece, Portugal, India and the Middle East. The brand continues to develop & grow, so there will be some major developments this year, to include numerous new products”. For a man of 43 years old, with three children, Rob never sits still for long as his belief, passion and pride in his work has always been a driving force, so it really should be no surprise that his field of work led him into the energy drinks sector!

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members only

RAISED VO ICES In sharp contrast to December’s visit to a shooting club and the cacophony of repeated gunshots; this month we enjoy the soft and melodic joys of choral melodies. Continuing our Members Only series, Solent Life have been speaking with one of the region’s leading choirs, The Lymington Choral Society.

Rehearsals are at Lymington Community Centre on Wednesday evenings 7.30 - 9.30pm and visitors are always welcome. Details of the Musical Director Michael Goldthorpe can be found on his own website at Words by David Rose-Massom 46… • JANUARY 2013

Publicist for the choir Viv Parsons contacted us and said, “Our choral society exists to allow singers from the New Forest area, and beyond, to enjoy making music together, it is that simple. In addition to having a voice, the essential qualifications for membership are enthusiasm and commitment. One of the things we are proud of is that we have a no-audition policy, anyone is welcome to come along and join and we can help them find their singing voice; we are very proud of the high standard we have achieved with the Society.” Peter Stonnard is the Chairman of the Choral Society. “Lymington Choral Society is just a very friendly group of people who work well together and love singing,” he told Solent Life. “As with many clubs of this sort we do have a majority of lady members in our 70 strong society and we could really use some more men as it means we are a ‘voice’ or two short at the moment. “In the past we have worked towards giving two main concerts each year and we are joined on stage by an orchestra of some 25 musicians and four or five guest professional singers; which makes for an impressive sound and experience for both the members and the audience.” “The Lymington Choral Society, or LCS for short, has been established in the New Forest for many years, in 2011 we celebrated 50 years of singing and performing, that gives us good classical roots that will help improve anyone’s vocal abilities,” Peter explained. “We are aware that some people may be nervous about walking through the door and wanting to join in with experienced singers; but we hope nobody is put off in coming to see what we are all about.” The Society rehearse and practice one evening each week and all they ask is the commitment to be at those rehearsals as

members only

often as possible. “We rehearse for two hours each Wednesday evening at Lymington Community Centre from 7.30 until 9.30 and we will be starting new rehearsals this month; anyone is welcome to drop by and introduce themselves. “One of our committee members will always be around to welcome guests and possible new members. We could do with some young blood in our choir, some of the choristers have been with us for 15 to 20 years, I have only been in the choir for some five years, so I suppose I am really a new boy!” he explained. “It would be great to get some youngsters in the choir to give us a new impetus as well as to keep us going as a society for another 50 years. Maybe they can even give us a new outlook on how we do things; lift us up even further and make us even better than we are already. As I have said, we do not audition and our Musical Director Michael is marvellous at bringing singers up to scratch.” With the popularity of choirs on television, thanks mainly to the very likeable Gareth Malone, here at Solent Life we felt the New Year was a good time to show that joining in with an experienced choir is just a matter of going to rehearsals and giving it a go. Lymington’s own version of Mr Malone is Michael Goldthorpe the Musical Director, who has been in charge of the keen choristers since September of 2006. “My aim since taking over as MD has been to extend the repertoire, to broaden the geographical area of performances, to include local schoolchildren where possible, but above all to retain the status of a non-auditioned choir, with an important social and recreational element. “LCS celebrated their Golden Jubilee last year. To mark that anniversary they commissioned a new piece for choir, children’s choir and organ by Chris de Souza. Entitled Loved

and Unloved, it set to music the nineteenth century words from Songs of Lymington, by local poet, Henry Doman,” he told Solent Life. “The choir also gave a second performance of a previous commission by Douglas Coombes, Make We Joy Now, for choir, three soloists and orchestra. “We are very proud of the high standard we reach, using professional instrumentalists and young professional soloists. This autumn we performed in St Mary Magdalene Church, New Milton with The Fernhill String Orchestra; in St Thomas’ Church, Lymington, with Lymington Classical Players; and Boldre Church, with Lymington Town Band; local musicians playing with local singers. Following a successful tour of the Cherbourg Peninsula in 2010 collaborating with French choirs, later this year we shall return to France for concerts in Vitré and Fougères,” he added. We asked the Chairman Peter Stonnard to sum up what it means to be part of a choir such as the LCS. “We all want to perform to the best we can and all come together at the right time to entertain the best as a choir. We have to get it right, it is a challenge every time we perform and the music we do is varied and so we do have to work hard to get a hold on the piece we are performing. “There is a terrific buzz for each of us as singers when we perform well and then there is the added buzz of the response from the audience when the applause comes; the last few concerts we have had standing ovations and that was wonderful for us as individuals and as a choir. Whenever I step onto the stage and begin singing the hairs on the back of my neck just stand on end; it is a marvellous feeling on its own, but then there is the bonus of doing that with some very good friends.”

JANUARY 2013 • …47


Lion Roars Down Under In

June 2013 The British Lions Rugby team will be touring Australia and it makes for a really good excuse to head down under, not only do you get to see some great rugby, it is taking place when airfares are at their lowest and the weather in Queensland is at its best. With a bit of careful planning you can spend some time on the Gold Coast whilst watching the first test in Brisbane before heading up to Tropical North Queensland to enjoy a few days on the beach or around the pool whilst also visiting the Great Barrier Reef and stunning scenery of the Tropical Rainforests. Finally cap it all off with some time in one of the most vibrant and exciting cities in the world, Sydney, where you will have the opportunity to see the 3rd and final test match. There are several ways you can go about making your holiday arrangements and Amity World Travel have the experience and knowhow to make sure you get the best itinerary for your time and money. The options include fully escorted touring, semi escorted and totally independent travel, Amity staff will be able to help you decide the best option to suit your needs. There aren’t many places as laid back as Tropical North 48… • JANUARY 2013

Queensland where dressing up for dinner means putting on your best T-shirt and thongs (flip flops) and with daytime temperatures averaging around 80F. Apart from great weather and a laid back lifestyle there is so much more on offer: The Great Barrier Reef with its snorkelling and diving opportunities as well as semisubmersibles for those not wanting to get their feet wet. Listed as one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World, the reef is made up of well over 2500 separate coral reefs, teeming with tropical fish so vibrant in colour it has to be seen to believe, add to this the possible chance to see turtles and dolphins and it will be a day you never forget. Back on dry land the main draw is the rainforests with their diverse flora and fauna that just seems to go on forever, with opportunities to go through it, over and around it by skyrail, foot, boat and train. The highlight for many will be a trip to the Daintree, this is where 2 world heritage sites

collide, the magical Daintree Rainforest and the sparkling Coral Sea with the afore mentioned Great Barrier Reef. A day in the Daintree will offer the opportunity to experience the tranquillity and splendour of the Mossman Gorge and to cruise the mighty Daintree River to admire the stunning wildlife and to search for the elusive estuarine crocodiles in their natural habitat. There are many places to stay along the Queensland coast that cater for all tastes and budgets from the boutique hotels to be found in Palm Cove and Mission Beach to the larger more family friendly resorts of Port Douglas, whilst the City of Cairns has been slowly transforming itself in recent years from the backpackers stop off point to something far more cosmopolitan with its upmarket marina, good choice of restaurants and a huge saltwater lagoon. Cairns also offers easy access to the Reef and its Islands as well as being just a short drive to many attractions including the Kuranda Scenic Railway, which winds its way up the mountain through the rainforest offering excellent photo opportunities along the way before heading back down over the rainforest canopy via the Skyrail. With so much to see and do it makes sense to contact an Australian specialist such as Jeff Kilby at Amity World Travel in Segensworth, Fareham, who will be able to guide you through the myriad of choices, making sure you get the holiday of your dreams.

Are you planning a major holiday? Whatever your reason for planning a trip of any kind, you want to be sure that the arrangements are just right and that you have the holiday of your dreams. One way to be certain of this is make Amity World Travel your first port of call in order to discuss your plans. Here, you can be sure that you will be offered expert advice and assistance in putting together your perfect holiday. Amity World Travel has been trading since 1970 and has been based at its current location in Segensworth since 1994. This unusual location for a travel agency offers a “non shop” setting where clients are welcome to drop in (often by appointment), and meet with a consultant who can take as much time as is needed to discuss your plans over a coffee, suggest a variety of options and make the necessary arrangements in quiet and relaxed surroundings. As an independently owned, ABTA and ATOL accredited company, Amity is able to tailor the widest choice of travel options to match your own personal needs. Through years of experience they have built direct relationships with ground handlers and hoteliers around

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the world, and they may be able to offer unique experiences that you just won’t find in a mass-market brochure. Amity World Travel blends old fashioned qualities of customer service, choice and impartiality with modern day booking technology to help give them the edge over their competition. As the leisure travel division of one of the most successful Business Travel Management Companies in the south of England, their consultants use the most up to date reservation technology, and have millions of ‘contract’ rates for worldwide flights, hotels and car rental. Put this together with the 70+ years of travel experience that Jeff, Sue and Elaine have between them, and you have a winning formula that sees clients returning year after year to put their trust in travel arrangements planned and booked at Amity World Travel. Telephone: 01489 579975. Visit our new website at

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As members of Advantage, the UK’s leading consortium of independent travel agents, we have the widest choice of tour operators from which to choose your dream holiday. Our expert consultants can also piece together the elements of your dream trip into a tailor-made holiday while you relax, safe in the knowledge that your arrangements are fully bonded.

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Telephone: 01489 579975 Email: Web: 4 Manor Court, Barnes Wallis Road, Segensworth East, Fareham, PO15 5TH JANUARY 2013 • …51

solent feature























Looking Back 2013 & Forward



Words & Images by David Rose-Massom


If you were born in January then you already 27 28know your birthstone is the garnet, but you may not know that

your flower is the carnation or snowdrop. It was a Jewish historian, who decided that twelve certain stones were linked to the twelve months of the year as well as the signs of the zodiac. The garnet is supposed to bring the wearer good luck and protection.



It was introduced in February 1582 by Pope Gregory XIII. It was not until September 1752 that Great Britain, and the USA accepted the Gregorian method.

“By her who in this month was born 4 5 No gem save garnets shall be worn They will ensure her constancy True friendship and fidelity.” (anon)

The use of flowers to mark a birth month are a little less clear but it is believed that this practice dates from the time of the Roman Empire, it is also recorded that the actual celebration of birthdays as a special day began during those times and were linked to the Roman calendar. What of the month of January itself? Well, it was established as the first month of the year from the Roman calendar and was named after the god Janus, which is also the Latin word for ‘door’. Janus was a two-faced god with one face looking forward and the other looking backward. January however, did not exist in earlier versions of the Roman calendar as it actually only had ten months with no January or February. Ten, it seems, was an important number to the Romans. Even when the final two months were added and Januarius, as the Romans named it, was included, the New Year for them was still along a bit and celebrated in March. It was in fact, only a few centuries ago that the western world began to celebrate January as the New Year. For the Anglo Saxons January was known as ‘Wolf Month’ as it was when hungry wolves would come into the villages in search of food; glad that custom has ended! Today the western world works and lives by the Gregorian calendar and is now the internationally accepted calendar and is also known by two other names; the ‘Western calendar’ or ‘Christian calendar’ and it was named after the man who first introduced this method of separating days, weeks and months via a solar calendar.











There are many customs linked to the month of January and the New Year, including a custom known as ‘firstfooting’; which was supposed to bring good luck to everyone in the house. As soon as the chimes of midnight had died down people would wait behind their doors for a dark-haired man to enter carrying coal, bread and some greenery. The coal would ensure the house was always warm, the bread would ensure there was enough to eat and greenery to ensure that everyone in the house had a long life. The dark-haired visitor would then remove a pan of ashes to signify the passing of the old year. Things were not so rosy for those born on the second day of January however, as Saxons believed this to be one of the unluckiest days of the year. For the people who live around the Gosport peninsula, and across many other parts of the country, it is a chilly start to the year, for on New Year’s day many a hardy soul can be seen stripped down to bare essentials or a fancy dress costume and taking a dip in open water. For some the seaside swim is a brief and chilling experience of diving under the surface and rushing back to the shore for dry clothes and a warming drink; while other, slightly mad it must be said, revellers actually enjoy the experience and swim around for a while. Whatever you get up to on New Year’s Eve and during the Bank Holiday on January 1st, stay safe, enjoy the final flourishes of the festive season and from all at Solent Life, have a very Happy and Prosperous New Year.





JANUARY 2013 • …53

solent feature


solent | theatre

How the ice is made Turning a theatre stage into a temporary ice rink is no easy task

54‌ • JANUARY 2013

A strict timetable needs to be followed in order for the ice rink to be ready in time for rehearsal skating at 5:00pm on our Tuesday opening night. Work starts every Monday morning at 7:00am when our technicians arrive at the venue and start unloading our two 45ft trucks with the

help of eighteen theatre technicians. The trucks carry not only the ice rink, but also the costumes, sets, sound and lighting equipment for the show. The work on piecing the rink together starts with the base and sides of the rink, which is made of marine reinforced plywood and waterproof timber for the edging. We now have what looks like a giant baking tray into which we will lay our pastry; only our pastry is a 52ft x 52ft heavy-duty pool liner. The most awkward section of the work begins, as the 10 miles of pipes mentioned earlier are now laid inside the tray and connected to the header pipes before being spaced out across the base of the tray and secured. The spacing is incredibly important and must be exact. If not, sections of the rink will not freeze and we would have some very unhappy and angry Russian skaters! After everything is connected on the stage, we then connect the header pipes to our chiller units outside the

theatre and start to fill the system with a mixture of glycol (antifreeze) and water. Once this is circulating throughout the pipes we turn the chillers down to a temperature of minus 15 degrees. The outside of the pipes will frost over and at this point we pop down to the local fish market and buy four tonnes of crushed ice, which we spread over the pipes. This basically gives us a head start in the ice making process. The time now has usually reached 6:00pm on the Monday evening. Overnight and throughout Tuesday, the rink is sprayed carefully every 15 minutes until it is approximately three

inches thick. This will take until about 3:00pm in the afternoon, when final dressings are given to the top of the ice surface so that it is perfectly smooth for the rehearsal and performance, some 34 hours after work began. While the spraying is taking place, our technicians are also working on getting the sets, lighting and sound in place, and our wardrobe managers are taking care of the more than 110 costumes, which will be used during our performance of the show. Once the rink is completed, the surface temperature is constantly monitored day and night throughout our stay at the theatre. In addition to this, during the interval and after each performance of the show, the surface is scraped and resurfaced with hot water to keep it as smooth as possible. Tony Mercer, Artistic Director

JANUARY 2013 • ‌55

solent | theatre

A question that is often asked is whether the rink is actually made of real ice? Well, be assured it is! In fact there are approximately 14 tonnes of it on the stage and, hidden beneath the surface, over 10 miles of pipe work and a few buckets of sweat, all at a working temperature of minus 15 degrees.

solent | homes


Urban (ltD)

DeveloPments (ltD) What do you do when the media continually focus on the poor state of our economy and the financial bureaucrats cant make their mind up if we are officially in or out of recession?

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If we relied on the pessimism we feel obliged to listen to where would we get the motivation to push ourselves out of it?

Optimism. You can’t live without it. If you’re optimistic

you can push forward, make the most of what you have, and start to succeed in whatever it is you’re trying to achieve. You cant ignore what the media impress on us, there has to be an element of truth in it somewhere but there also has to be a cut off. Sometimes you have to bite the bullet and push forward on your own free will.

What we are trying to achieve with Urban Developments is no easy feat. With positive thinking, an open mind and a strong will we are seeing a comfortable steady incline in project commitment with clients. This I firmly believe is down to a multitude of aspects. A strong team of tradesmen, positive attitude, simple effective marketing, healthy and cooperative relations with clients, a listening ear and of course a great quality finish. These are not just a list of items you would expect to see if reading a marketing column but true and honest beliefs from a company that is interested in what the client is trying to achieve. You employ people like us to make a change to your life. We know this, so are out to impress! There is no point banging on about cumulative years of experience or boasting about the projects we’ve completed. We like to think our reputation, testimonials and ability prove that we are more than capable of giving you a finish to your project that makes you recommend further.

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Peter Westmorland Director Tel: 023 9213 5938 or 07900 082882 Email: 56… • JANUARY 2013

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solent | charity

One in 25 children in school, that is one child in every classroom – this is how many children in the UK experience the death of a parent or sibling.

SOMEBODY TO LISTEN... What better way to celebrate the tenth anniversary of a very special charity that has grown slowly and strongly than by launching a new support group; this time in Portsmouth. Simon Says have been running support groups for children and young people suffering bereavement since 2002 across central Hampshire and the New Forest from their base in West Wellow and now they will launch a similar group in Hilsea. Paula Wiseman from the charity spoke to Solent Life about Simon Says and the people involved. “One of the major things in recent years is that our awareness has grown with regard to what we are doing and more importantly public awareness has also grown,” she said. “We now have some 50 volunteers working with us and they are the heart of the charity; they man the phones, help with fund raising, run stalls at different events and, most importantly, after full training is given they help in support of the young people and children through our groups. “All of our training is done in house and that training is always on-going,” Paula added. There have always been events to get the children and families involved, but last October the charity tried something new. “We had our first residential weekend, and it was at Fairthorne Manor on the outskirts of Botley. In addition to the fun

62… • JANUARY 2013

of activities like kayaking, there were sessions for the children to just talk about their feelings and troubles; quite simply this is how the support groups work by sharing and working together; proving and showing to the youngsters that they are not alone. “It is important to let them know that it is okay to be sad or angry, or to feel any of the emotions that come with bereavement. Equally important, that it is okay to still feel happy and to laugh; to carry on enjoying life without feeling guilt!” With Simon Says, it is not just a case of supporting the children for a short while after their bereavement; they stick with them. “The youngsters stay with us for as long as they want, or they can even just dip in and out of what we do when it suits them,” she continued. “Some of the long-standing young people now give back to the charity through their own fund raising and support. “The aim of what we do has always been to offer our support to any bereaved child in Hampshire. One important thing that has changed since we began is that we now work very closely with schools. We hold workshops with the children and help train the teachers to deal with their students who have suffered the loss of someone close.” Simon Says is supported totally by fund raising and donation and as well as the much needed funding, it has also now brought much deserved accolades. “We were awarded the prize of ‘Best Fundraising Project of the Year at the Wessex Charity Awards

solent | charity Office 08453 055 744 Helpline 023 8064 7550 that were held last October. It was a fabulous moment for us and rubber-stamped the good job we are all doing here. We were given the award because we looked at different initiatives to raise money; that has allowed us to expand our services and not only that; we enlarged our budgets and targets for that fundraising. “Part of the expansion that our success has allowed, is our move into the Portsmouth area where there is now a monthly support group running out of Hilsea. Hopefully this spring or early summer we will have another group operating in Basingstoke These new centres will mean that children and families from across Hampshire have access to our support. It is vitally important that the support is close to the area where those that need us live.” We asked Paula to sum up if she could, how she felt about the charity that we last featured in our pages some six years ago. “We have achieved so much in the ten years since our launch; we have grown from strength to strength with a wonderful team of volunteers and supporters. It is impossible to say how many children we have helped in that decade but it is satisfying enough to say it is a substantial number. “National statistics quote that 4% of children of school age will lose a parent or sibling, that is one in every 25 and that does not take into account those that lose grandparents, aunts, uncles,

cousins or friends. At least now, the children of Hampshire can get the support and comfort they need; not only from us but from other children who have suffered from bereavement; they now know they are not alone in how they feel.”

r er Coo olunte V t, t o c eS act Louis ease cont l P ? d e t s re e ers. Int Always looking for volunte

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JANUARY Words 2013 • by David Rose-Massom …63

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ALL SEASONS FRUITERERS Established in 1988 within the High Street, All Seasons Fruiterers has relied on the Community support and emphasis has always been on sourcing whenever possible, local produce. With the benefit of the butchers, bakers, fish shop and greengrocers, the united choice has gone against the trend of losses within Communities nationwide. Independent retailers such as the many to be found in Lee, together form the basis for a sustainable future.


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green fingers

January Gardening Happy New Year! If you’ve been cooped up indoors over Christmas, why not get some fresh air in the garden? Winter rain means the soil is easy to work, so long as it’s not frozen, so dig over bare patches, which will soon warm you up. Supplied by Garsons Garden Centre This month’s gardening advice is dedicated to wildlife-friendly gardening, since birds and other wildlife need a helping hand during the coldest months. If the ground isn’t frozen, consider planting some wildlife-friendly shrubs which produce berries that birds love to feed on in mid-winter. As well as being useful to birds, these shrubs add interest through the less colourful months when much of the garden is dormant. The Cotoneaster gives colour and berries right through the winter – blackbirds are especially fond of them. It grows in full sun and partial shade and should reward you with lots of red berries in winter and flowers in summer. For an alternative to the tall-growing Cotoneaster, the Horizontalis variety provides ground cover and will grow to about 3 ft 4” /100cm high, with a spread of about 180cm. Pyracantha is another shrub that’s loved by birds for the yellow, red or orange berries. Because of their thorny nature, they provide a good security barrier round the edge of your garden. Berberis Darwinii is a hardy and fast-growing evergreen shrub that grows to around three foot square. It makes a good hedge and produces golden-orange flowers in spring followed by berries in autumn. Again, birds love the berries during the autumn and winter months. As their natural food declines, many wild birds rely on food from bird tables and in garden feeders. Make sure it’s high energy food as smaller birds in particular need large amounts to keep energy levels high. Ideal choices are balls of fat, suet cakes and treats, dried mealworms, peanuts and high energy

seed mixes. Once you start feeding, try and keep going through the winter as they come to rely on it. Did you know different bird feeders suit different types of birds? Garsons has a wide range of feeders and feed. As well as basic feed mixes, there are different types of seed to attract specific species.The knowledgeable team will be happy to advise you on how to attract a wide variety of birds to your garden. Keep an unfrozen water source available throughout cold weather as birds will not only drink but bathe to keep their feathers in good condition. Other wildlife will drink from it too. If nesting boxes are left up over winter, birds will use them for night-time roosting. You can also get little habitats for bees, ladybirds and other insects – we’re late in the season for those as the insects have already hibernated, but you might want to get an insect habitat for later in the year. Other jobs in the garden this month: Prune apple and pear trees now before they start to bud. Remove dead or weak looking branches and aim for a strong shape with well-spaced branches. Check stakes and supports that have taken a battering from winter weather. Clear away dead branches and debris from your borders, but leave it a little messy for wildlife.

Until next month, happy gardening!

JANUARY 2013 • …65

solent | nature

Events in January

Winter Woodland Words by Jess Daish-Miller Images by Alex Cruickshank & Darin Smith

It may only be January but there are already some plants flowering at Swanwick Lakes Nature Reserve. Many of the earliest flowers rely on wind pollination and so are not as bright and showy as those that need to attract insects. The male hazel catkins, however, are spectacular, bright yellow and giving off clouds of pollen at the slightest breeze. The female flowers are harder to spot- tiny and reddish coloured, emerging from buds in the centre of shoots. Many of our birds are easier to see in the skeletal, winter trees. Flocks of goldfinches, blue tits and great tits can be seen fluttering through the woodland and are often joined by around 20 chattering long-tailed tits. Long-tailed tits are particularly spritely little characters, who, later in the year, will be using lichen and spiders’ webs to build tiny perfectly round nests. Their tiny beaks give us a clue to their usual diet of insects, but these tasty bundles of protein are scarce in the winter. The tits will often supplement their winter diet with seeds and as a result, we are sometimes lucky enough to spot them on our bird feeders. Those with sharp eyes and plenty of patience may even spot a kingfisher 66… • JANUARY 2013

by one of the lakes. The kingfisher is a particular favourite among our regular visitors. They are tricky to spot but if you are lucky enough to see one, the flash of iridescent blue and orange is unmistakable. Why not join us for our guided walk on 10th January to find out more about the wintery wonders of Swanwick Lakes? Swanwick Lakes Nature Reserve is an 86 acre reserve located on Sopwith Way, off Swanwick Lane. The reserve is owned by NATS and managed by the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust. The reserve is open from dawn until dusk for all to enjoy. The Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust works to create a better future for wildlife and wild places in Hampshire and the Island. Find out more at Join us today and enjoy the benefits of being amember of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust. For more information contact our membership team on 01489 774 408.

8TH JANUARY 2013 Swanwick Lakes Wildlife Tots - Whatever the weather 10:30am – 12 noon or 1 – 2:30pm Rainy or sunny, cloudy or windy, Swanwick Tots always like to go out and play. Find out all about our weather at our regular session of stories, games and crafts for pre-school children. For further details and to book your place, please contact Dawn Preston or Jess Daish-Miller on 01489 570240. Booking is essential as places are limited. Suggested donation £3 per child. 10TH JANUARY 2013 Blow away the cobwebs 10:30am Join staff at Swanwick Lakes Nature Reserve for a short guided walk looking for signs of life during the winter months. What a perfect way to recover from the festive season! For further details and to book your place, please contact Dawn Preston or Jess DaishMiller on 01489 570240. Suggested donation £3 per person. 14TH JANUARY 2013 Fareham District Members Group Langstone and Farlington 7.30pm Local wildlife expert John Goodspeed will give a talk on these wonderful places of Natural History in which the Trust is involved. To be held at Holy Trinity Church hall, West Street, Fareham, PO16 0EL. Contact Peter Adams on 01329 287653 e-mail Parking is available in Trinity Street or Western Road car parks. Suggested donation £2. 26TH JANUARY 2013 Make a Bird Feeder 10am – 12noon Drop in to Swanwick Lakes and make a bird feeder to take home. You will be helping your garden birds through the winter. For further details and to book your place, please contact Dawn Preston or Jess DaishMiller on 01489 570240. Please bring a carrier bag to take your bird feeder home in. Suggested donation £3 per bird feeder.



FARMERS’ MARKETS BRINGING LOCAL PRODUCE DIRECT FROM THE PRODUCER Experience the true taste of Hampshire with a visit to Hampshire Farmers Markets throughout the county during 2013. We bring real food, passionately produced throughout Hampshire, to Alma Road Car Park in Romsey, and to our other popular markets in the county, originated and sold by producers who have been directly involved in its creation. All our producers pride themselves on the highest quality and freshness, with all produce being sold grown, reared, caught, brewed, pickled, baked or processed in the county, or within 10 miles of the border. This means you don't pay a premium for food miles, you're always receiving the freshest food, and you're helping the local economy. Discover more about local Hampshire produce, download offer vouchers and recipes, and see the latest Hampshire Farmers Markets news at


JANUARY Sunday 6th FEBRUARY Sunday 3rd MARCH Sunday 3rd APRIL Sunday 7th MAY Sunday 5th JUNE Sunday 2nd JULY Sunday 7th AUGUST Sunday 4th SEPTEMBER Sunday 1st OCTOBER Sunday 6th NOVEMBER Sunday 3rd DECEMBER Sunday 1st Tel: 01420 588671 Fax: 01420 588607

Romsey Farmers’ Market runs from 10am – 2pm on the above dates in 2013. Organised by: Hampshire Farmers’ Markets Ltd, Rotherfield Park Estate, East Tisted, Alton, Hampshire, GU34 3Q

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solent | nature

Join us today

Difficult Days The last few weeks at Farlington Marshes have been a difficult time for wildlife and visitors, with much of the reserve closed for essential repairs to the seawall. Thankfully the works are now at an end but it brings into focus the perilous future that faces the Solent’s coastal wildlife. Words by Robert Chapman Main image by Albert Roberts It is easy to take for granted that the Solent shore is a place of saltmarshes and shorebird-filled mudflats, for that is how it has been throughout recorded history. The Solent is one of the most important areas for wintering shorebirds in the whole of Europe and the three eastern harbours of Chichester, Langstone and Portsmouth especially so. The proximity of such a wildlife spectacle to some of the South’s most densely populated areas is a cause for justifiable delight, we don’t need to travel to distant places to enjoy wildlife, it’s on our doorstep! The coast is a naturally dynamic place but with so many of us living so close to the shore, defences have had to be built to keep the shore where we want it to be rather than where nature wants it to be. In the case of Farlington Marshes the seawall, built in about 1770, reclaimed land for agriculture and ultimately gave us the wildlife haven we have today. The defences have served us well, but there are consequences that flow from fixing the shoreline. Now that sea levels are rising, mudflats and the salt marshes are slowly being lost, along with the natural coastal defence they provide. In Langstone Harbour this is resulting in the islands where gulls and tern nest and waders roost being inundated more frequently, increasing the importance of Farlington Marshes as a last refuge 68… • JANUARY 2013

on the higher tides. Big tides put more pressure on the seawall that protects the reserve increasing the need for maintenance and eventual replacement. The wall at Farlington not only protects the marshes, but also the A27 and areas of housing to the north of the road. So for anyone who has visited the Marshes recently and found access difficult, or who wanted to attend one of the events we were forced to cancel at short notice, I apologise. The future of the reserve and its’ wildlife depends upon maintaining the seawall; the same issues will be played out all along our coast. There will be much change in the next few decades, so I urge you to get out and enjoy one of the great wildlife spectacles while you can. Your local Wildlife Trust The Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust works to create a better future for wildlife and wild places in Hampshire and the Island. As the leading local wildlife conservation charity, it looks after 61 wildlife reserves, has 27,000 members and 1,000 volunteers. The Trust manages its own land and advises other landowners how to manage their land with wildlife in mind. Staff and volunteers also carry out surveys and gather data to monitor how our local wildlife is doing. Find out more at

…and enjoy the benefits of being a member of the Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust. For more information contact our membership team on 01489 774 408. Unlimited FREE visits to over 55 wildlife reserves in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight and 2,500 reserves nationwide A welcome pack when you join Hampshire and Isle of Wight Natural World, the Wildlife Trust’s magazine, delivered to you (or your partner) three times a year The chance to take part in local group and community activities… offering you a variety of opportunities to be involved in more than 400 walks, talks and events throughout the two counties Join by Direct Debit and receive your FREE full colour Local Wildlife Reserve Guide. Visit and discover your local Wildlife Trust

Events in January 14TH JANUARY 2013 19:30pm A talk on Langstone Harbour and Farlington Marshes by local expert John Goodspeed. To be held at Holy Trinity Church Hall, West Street, Fareham PO16 0EL – suggested donation £2. 18TH JANUARY 2013 19:30pm A film celebrating 100 years of the Wildlife Trusts presented by Simon King, David Attenborough and Aubrey Manning. The evening will be introduced by Hampshire and Isle of Wight Wildlife Trust president Jean Hedley. To be held at The Parish Centre, Green Road, Alverstoke PO12 2ET. Admission £2.50 adults, £1 children. 24TH JANUARY 2013 Bird Watching in Langstone Harbour 10:00am – 13:00pm A walk to explore the streams and shore on the northern side of the Harbour lead by John Goodpseed. Meet and park at Bidbury Mead car park, Bedhampton (map ref. SU703 064). Contact John on 023 9222 1361 or 07811 435252 or e-mail suggested donation £1.50.

The Hampshire Directory

Two Become One As Single Hampshire Business Guide Gets The Go-Ahead Thousands of businesses across Hampshire are to appear in a new comprehensive countywide guide and online directory from next year. Hampshire Chamber of Commerce and Hampshire County Council have agreed to merge their respective annual guides and directories into a single source of information. The 120-page guide will have complementary print and online formats detailing thousands of easily searchable individual listings across all sectors. Users can find entries by name, location, sector, corporate description, turnover and employee numbers. Jimmy Chestnutt, Chief Executive of Hampshire Chamber, said: “We want to simplify the market by ensuring there is only one Hampshire business guide. Hampshire County Council and Hampshire Chamber currently have their own directories and it makes sense to combine them to make it easier for people to find the business services they need, knowing that the data is from a reliable source endorsed by both organisations.”

December 2012/January 2013

Readers from the business community will also be able to find out about business support initiatives highlighted in the guide and further showcase their activities through value-added promotions and marketing. Andrew Smith OBE, Chief Executive of Hampshire County Council, said: “Our aim is to create a product that will support business growth and prosperity by contributing to the promotion and marketing of business and to help businesses engage with one another.” Tenders for the print and design of the guide and the construction of the web resources have been issued and it is expected the product will be available from March 2013. For







Telephone No: 0844 499 0446 – JANUARY 2013 • …69


solent feature

Johnnie It was the days of horse-drawn milk-carts and dustcarts and my grandfather would be out in the road each morning scooping the droppings from the roadway – they were always good for the small veg plot at the bottom of our garden; rhubarb two foot tall and cabbages bigger than a football. In the same era another delivery man used to appear at certain times of the year; not horse drawn this time but on a rattling, old push bike draped in strings of pinkish coloured and bulbous onions – this was

Johnnie Onion Man!

Dressed in black beret and, often, a blue and white hooped shirt he would peddle all around the south coast delivering and selling his onions door-to-door for three or four months each summer. These were the Breton farmers and agricultural labourers who would cross the Channel in order to sell the distinctive pink onions that were slung in massive strings across the frame and handlebars of their bikes. I must admit that as a child I believed there to be only one Onion Man, and that he worked very hard cycling back and forth across the channel to reload his black bike with yet more strings of the pungent bulb. It was only in later years that the hooped shirt and beret, worn at a jaunty French angle, was recognised as the uniform of the Breton onion growers. In the 1950s and at certain times of the year the Johnnie Onion Man was seen everywhere but sadly now, in the age of Farmers’ Markets and International Markets, only a handful remain. Now, little more than a novelty with the occasional hardy soul preserving the tradition, there has been a small resurgence in the last decade or so, as the public have shown an interest in purchasing direct from the grower as with farmer’s markets. They looked a strange sight on our English streets as they arrived dressed in their Breton costume, riding the bicycle hung with bulging strings of onions, this purveyor of foreign foods became, what was for us, perhaps a stereotypical image of how all Frenchman looked. The colourful onion sellers originated from the area around the town of Roscoff in Brittany, Onion Johnnies at the time discovered there was a more profitable market in England than at home, and so brought their harvest across the Channel in July to store in rented barns, and then travelled the south selling their wares before returning home in December or January. In my youth we believed that Johnnie would empty his handlebars and immediately hop on the ferry to return home and re-stock; now it is obvious that it would have been a very unprofitable way of selling their vegetables. Back in the beginning when they first began to take their 70… • JANUARY 2013

Onion Man

solent feature

Words by David Rose-Massom

onions away from their own region, it might have seemed logical to have sold their produce in Paris, however the roads and the railways of France were bad in the 19th century, and going to the French capital was still a long and difficult trip. As it turned out they discovered that crossing the channel was actually shorter and easier. This trade on English soil apparently began as far back as 1828 when the first successful trip was made by one Henri Ollivier. Although journeys were mostly made by ferry, small sail ships and steamers were used in the early days, and the crossing at times could be hazardous; one such tragedy occurred in 1905 when seventy Johnnies died as the steamer SS Hilda sank at Saint-Malo. The golden age for Johnnie Onion was between the wars during the 1920s; in 1929 nearly 1,400 Johnnies imported over 9,000 tonnes of onions to the UK, so much for the thought of there being only the one highly productive cycling salesman. Within a few years the Great depression hit, swiftly followed by the devaluation of our currency in the early 1930s, this ended the strong era as trade suddenly fell, reaching a low in 1934, when fewer than 400 Johnnie Onion men imported less than 3,000 tonnes. In the aftermath of World War II, onions, in common with other goods, were subject to import restrictions, and were obliged to be traded through a single company. By 1973 the number of Johnnies had dropped even further to just 160, and that number continued to decline to around 20 Johnnies by the end of the 20th century. Their numbers may have been dropping but one other vital link was established because of the onion growers and the strength of their trade with England, to make the transport of their produce easier it inspired several farmers in Brittany to set up Brittany Ferries in the 1970s. The Onion Man may well have dropped to just the odd purveyor now, but the legacy left behind gave us the ferry company that runs out of Portsmouth and an Onion Johnny museum opened in the town of Roscoff in 2004; the town also holds a two-day Fête de l’Oignon (Onion Festival) every summer. Since July 2009, the Roscoff onion has been protected under the French Appellation d’Origine Controlee designation. Sadly records show that there are only about 15 ‘Onion Johnnies’ left today, but they still cross the channel twice a year to sell their onions to we English who appreciate the taste of a good onion; and Roscoff onions have now been officially recognised as some of the best in France, or indeed Europe, and are being served in starred restaurants by some of the top chefs, but modern ways of importing and distributing onions have now replaced what might have created that so-loved French stereotype of the Breton farmer with his hooped T-shirt and black beret. JANUARY 2013 • …71

solent feature


Master craftsman, David Evans, will attempt to set a new world record by creating the largest hand-cut, wooden jigsaw puzzle, consisting of 40,000 pieces! Dave Evans, of Guest Book Puzzles, Weymouth said the completed jigsaw will reach 150 sq ft measuring approximately 10ft x 15ft and will feature a montage of photographs, supplied by the general public, of the momentous events that formed part of 2012, to include the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and London Olympics. At the same time, he is attempting to beat the record for the largest commercially made jigsaw which currently stands at 32,256 cardboard pieces and has been held by German jigsaw company Ravensburger AG for over 2 years. Mr Evans originally served an apprenticeship with the renowned Victory Puzzles in Bournemouth more than 40 years ago, who created a top selling puzzle of the Queen’s Coronation in 1952. He says “The jigsaw will be made up of pictures supplied by the general public, which is why we’re going to call it ‘the people’s puzzle.’ I’m one of the few people who are professionally trained to hand cut jigsaws and I wanted to leave a legacy, so I thought maybe I could create this giant jigsaw, featuring images taken of a jubilant year…2012” Preparations are well in advance with the Guinness world record team and Dave will be commencing the 2 week attempt on his 30” Scroll Saw sometime during February/March 2013. There has already been international interest, with requests from America, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa to live stream the world record attempt via the internet. Although plans for the world record attempt are well advanced, Dave continues to professionally cut a variety of creative products out of

72… • JANUARY 2013

solent feature

40,000 piece jigsaw puzzle

wood. In particular, he has recently been kept very busy by demands for an exciting new alternative to the traditional wedding guest book, made entirely out of wooden pieces. Wedding guest book puzzles are proving to be a very popular choice by brides-to-be and can be located at the Jigsaw Workshop, situated at Brewer’s Quay in Weymouth where Dave cuts each piece by hand. The workshop is nestled in picturesque gardens and still houses the original bellows & furnace where the former blacksmiths operated back in the late 1850’s. Dave enthuses “I was initially approached by a bride-to-be who had witnessed the demand for the product whilst in the USA, so I cut a 40-piece puzzle, in a heart shape and she was absolutely delighted with it. The guests all wrote their messages on a puzzle piece, then the bride & groom reassembled the pieces to form a lasting keepsake to treasure. Once I uploaded the image onto my website, the orders came flooding in. The most popular designs to date have been in the shape of hearts, trees & butterflies”. When asked about the forthcoming Guinness world record attempt, Dave enthuses “I am humbled by the international interest and truly hope that I can leave a legacy which portrays the pride I take in my work and, with the support of the general public, I believe that together we can create a people’s puzzle to embrace 2012 as a truly remarkable year to remember “. Jigsaw Workshop still require some additional images to be featured in the world record puzzle attempt and welcome members of the public to forward their clear images (which must be their own work) of any street parties, events and festivals relating to the Jubilee or Olympics to words by Jane Dean

JANUARY 2013 • …73



Solent Life has been venturing out across the region to capture and bring to you some images from the notable events of the past few weeks…

words & images by david rose-massom


Portsmouth’s Historic Dockyard once again put on an amazing event to celebrate the Festive Season. Costumed re-enactors, music, mayhem and fake snow all went to make one of the best Victorian Christmas Festivals it has been our pleasure to attend. DEBRA CHARITY SUPERSTORE OPENING The queues spread down the street and they were entertained by circus style performers at the opening of the new DEBRA Furniture & Electrical Charity Superstore at Elm Grove, Southsea. The store will sell a wide selection of affordable, good quality used furniture and electrical items to raise funds for the charity. DEBRA is the only national charity that supports individuals and families affected by Epidermolysis Bullosa (EB) – an excruciatingly painful skin condition which causes the skin to blister and shear at the slightest touch. If you have any unwanted furniture or electrical goods you would like to donate to the store (free collection available) or a few hours you could spare volunteering, a great way to gain valuable retail work experience, please call 02392 291574 or email

74… • JANUARY 2013

RAINBOW CENTRE CHRISTMAS CIRCUS BALL Fareham charity The Rainbow Centre, kicked off the party season with its Christmas Circus Fancy Dress Ball which was held at the Botleigh Grange Hotel, Hedge End on the 1st December. Guests were greeted by a fire juggling stilt walker before sitting down to enjoy an evening full of traditional circus themed entertainment. Everyone entered into the party spirit by joining in the plate spinning and balloon modelling competitions but the highlight of the evening came after dinner when knife throwing act The Texans took to the floor. Members of the audience were invited to join in. On the night, the auction and raffle raised nearly £4,000. BOWMAN ALES TOUR It was probably one of our more popular competitions, a tour around the brewery of Bowman Ales, based in Wallops Wood near Droxford. Winners from Old Portsmouth, Jackie and David Baynes were given the VIP treatment, some tasters and an explanation of how a small brewery works. Solent Life would like to thank Martin from Bowman Ales for his hospitality and some very fine ales.

CHRISTMAS GOODIES There was plenty to entertain us all over Christmas in every town, village and community across the Solent Life region. Despite the doom and gloom in the news people smiled and crowded into shops with carrier bags laden with gifts and goodies as carol singers and street musicians entertained. We hope you all kept your receipts!

JANUARY 2013 • …75

Events across the Solent region.


THE EVENT Words by Sam Westerby

Hi-De-Hi actor Jeffrey Holland is currently marking his 41st pantomime season by playing Dame Trot in Jack and the Beanstalk at the Mayflower Theatre. Solent Life caught up with the Walsall-born performer to ask him about the pantomime, Hi-De-Hi and his love of Laurel and Hardy.



The Point, Eastleigh 02380 652333 Chichester Festival Theatre 01243 781312 Salisbury Playhouse 01722 320333 Mayflower Theatre 02380 711811 Theatre Royal Winchester 01962 840440 King’s Theatre Southsea 02392 828282 Tower Arts Centre, Winchester 01962 867986 Ferneham Hall 01329 231942 Ashcroft Arts Centre Fareham 01329 310600 The Concorde Club 02380 613989

If you have anything going on, tell us here at Solent Life and we will include it in our feature. 01489 583800


Joining Jeffrey in the stellar Jack and the Beanstalk cast is Celebrity Big Brother champion Julian Clary, Chariots of Fire actor Nigel Havers and West End singer Lee Mead. So what can people expect from the production? “No-holds-barred comedy, a rapping cow and 3D technology,” said Jeffrey. Jeffrey’s Dame Trot is the latest role in his pantomime dame career which began with Nurse in Sleeping Beauty at Plymouth Theatre Royal in 1989. His first appearance as Jack’s mother was at Wolverhampton Grand Theatre in 1999 and it’s a character he enjoys playing. “I like the fun that Dame Trot gives the audience,” said Jeffrey. “I think the dame is really there to amuse the mums because the mums always see a lot of themselves in the dame. It’s pure caricature. It’s a huge amount of fun.” He cites comedy greats Arthur Askey, Terry Scott, Cyril Fletcher and Jack Tripp as influences on his dame characterisations. His signature role is entertainer Spike Dixon in Hi-De-Hi. The David Croft and Jimmy Perry sitcom aired between 1980 and 1988 and won a Bafta for best comedy series in 1984. “Perry and Croft had this wonderful knack of creating a good clean family show,” said Jeffrey. “With Hi-De-Hi you had the holiday camps of the 1950s which I remember as a boy going to with my mum and dad. People of all ages loved the show, because for the kids who didn’t know about the holiday camps of the 50’s, it was for all the colourful characters and the fun they we got up to and the relationships between all the characters. For the older members of the audience, they remember the holiday camps just after the war when everything was still a bit austere.” Jeffrey wore an array of spectacular costumes in the BBC show and recalls wearing the Bertie Bassett costume in 1981 episode No Dogs Allowed. • JANUARY 2013

“They covered up the chalet so the studio audience couldn’t see me,” said Jeffrey. “They put a big screen up, so when I came through the door into the chalet it got a huge reaction from the studio audience because they hadn’t seen me standing by to come on. It was a massive costume.” His other TV credits include Dad’s Army, Russ Abbott’s Madhouse, Dixon of Dock Green, The Kenny Everett Television Show, Coronation Street and You Rang M’Lord? The sitcom star reserves special praise for film icons Laurel and Hardy. “They’ve taught me all I know,” said Jeffrey. “From the time I was a very small boy going to the Saturday morning cinema I was watching Laurel and Hardy. They’ve always been there. The characters have always been my friends. I love them to bits. Their inspiration in comedy to me is unsurpassable.” A play with Jeffrey as Stan Laurel is a ‘work-in-progress’ project. “I’ve got a Laurel and Hardy ‘Sons of the Desert’ convention and they’ve asked me to do it for them in May next year,” said Jeffrey. “So if I don’t do it before then I’ll certainly be doing it then.” Next year also sees the release of Ray Cooney movie Run for Your Wife which features Jeffrey, Girls Aloud singer Sarah Harding and Men Behaving Badly actor Neil Morrissey amongst its star-studded cast.

Jack and the Beanstalk is at the Mayflower Theatre until 19th January. Tickets are available via 023 8071 1811 and

Music, Comedy, Events & Theatre THE JACKSONS: The Jacksons’ need little introduction with their unique brand of soulful pop-funk, their lengthy catalogue of hits, and their impeccable live performances which have made them one of the most beloved musical acts of all time. Adored by millions of fans over the world, the Jacksons forever changed the landscape of popular music. When siblings Jackie, Jermaine, Marlon, and Tito Jackson rose to fame with their late brother Michael in the 1970s, they instantly became an unstoppable global sensation. BIC Windsor Hall, Sat 2nd March at 7:30pm Tickets: £42.50 - £47.50 Tickets are on sale now. Call the BH Live Tickets on 0844 576 3000, book online at or visit the BIC or Bournemouth Pavilion Ticket Office in person.

tribute to an act of uncertainty. Also visiting, the all-male contemporary company 2Faced Dance make a welcome return to The Point with Out Of His Skin (March 13). Under the direction of Tamsin Fitzgerald, and using the company’s trademark urban and highly physical dance vocabulary, this work explores society’s obsession with the extreme, reminding us that it’s okay to be “normal”. THE POINT, Eastleigh. For more details of the new spring season, call the box office on 023 8065 2333 or visit

PALOMA FAITH: A singer growing in popularity with all ages is Paloma Faith and she has announced a series of UK tour dates for this year. Paloma’s incredible second album Fall To Grace reached number 2 in the UK albums chart when THE THREE BELLES: A superb trio of performers it was released in May. Her first full tour of Fall who have already delighted us here at Solent To Grace will be coming to the…BIC WINDSOR Life. At the outbreak of World War 2, three HALL, Bournemouth on 5th June at 6:30pm. women from very different backgrounds decide Tickets: £22.50 and are on sale now. Call the BH to form a singing trio to keep up morale on the Live Tickets on 0844 576 3000, book online at Home Front – The Three Belles… and in the or visit the BIC or Bournemouth course of singing outstandingly good songs in Pavilion Ticket Office in person. luscious tight harmonies, Betty, Gail and Dorothy let you into their lives, too! Mixing monologues, SAVE THE LAST DANCE FOR ME: A new show letters and humorous sketches with toe-tapping from the writers, producers, creators and director wartime swing numbers, The Three Belles create of the huge success Dreamboats and Petticoats, a vibrant celebration of the lives of people comes to The Mayflower Theatre early this year. whose determination, grit and humour took them Save the Last Dance for Me will take audiences through the dark years of the War to eventual back through the ‘music and magic’ of the early triumph.New Theatre Royal, 20-24 Guildhall Walk, 60s, a time when each passing week brought Portsmouth, PO1 2DD, Sat 2 Feb 7:30pm £10 - £15 another Rock ‘n’ Roll classic. Written by Laurence (Students: £10 all areas) Box Office 023 9264 9000 Marks and Maurice Gran (Goodnight Sweetheart, Birds of a Feather, Shine on Harvey Moon), and with authentic recreation of the sound of Rock DANCE AT THE POINT: Eastleigh’s premier ‘n’ Roll, this nostalgic, feel-good journey will venue enters its new season with a smorgasbord transport you back to music’s golden era as we of quality entertainment, promising to offer follow two teenage sisters through the summer of something to suit all tastes but it is the dance that ‘63. Featuring the classic hits of Pomus & Shuman gets things moving. As ever, the Eastleigh venue’s including: A Teenager in Love; Sweets for my dance programme is particularly exciting with Sweet; Turn Me Loose; Here I Go Again; Viva Las the season kicking off with bgroup’s eagerlyVegas; Little Sister; His Latest Flame; Suspicion; anticipated new work Just As We Are (March 7). Can’t Get Used to Losing You; Save the Last Dance Under the direction of leading choreographer Ben For Me and many more... Wright, bgroup is one of the most exciting dance Save the Last Dance for Me (Mon 25 – Sat 30 companies in the UK. This new piece, featuring March) are on sale from The Mayflower Box Office solos, duets and a spectacular group finale, is a tel: 02380 711811, online at or in

person from the Mayflower ticket south shop in The Marlands Southampton. Ovation Restaurant bookings: 02380 711833. GUYS AND DOLLS: Presented by award-winning Encore Youth Theatre this is a musical fable of Broadway based on a story and characters of Damon Runyon. All the hot gamblers are in New York. They are all depending on Nathan Detroit to set up this week’s game but where will Nathan get the $1000 to pay for the venue? There is only one solution - take the biggest gamble of his life and bet the hottest gambler of them all, Sky Masterson. What can go wrong? It’s a safe bet because there is no way a mission doll like Miss Sarah would ever fall for a gambler. Is there? Music and lyrics by Frank Loesser Book by Jo Swerling and Abe Burrows Theatre Royal, Winchester on Wed 20th to Sat 23rd Feb - Tickets: Full £13.50 Concessions £8.50 Family Ticket £40 Special Offer 2 for 1 (Wed performance only) HIGH 5 APPEAL: Wessex Heartbeat is staging a special variety show at the Mayflower Theatre on 10 March in aid of the Charity’s HIGH 5 Appeal. The HIGH 5 Variety Show, to be hosted by Mike Osman, will showcase the best of musical talent from local schools (Otterbourne Primary, Thornden, Cams Hill & Wildern) plus the E Minor Pop Academy and SJ Academy of Dance, performing a variety of pieces including extracts from Les Misérables and The Wizard of Oz to the Gilbert and Sullivan-esque Pinafore Pirates; 60’s Soul music and rock. Money raised from this special evening will go towards the £500,000 HIGH 5 Appeal which will help other less fortunate young people with life-long heart conditions to give them a happier and better life while they are in hospital. Tickets for HIGH 5 Variety Show (Sunday 10 March 2013) are on sale from The Mayflower Box Office tel: 02380 711811, online at or in person from the Mayflower ticket south shop in The Mall Southampton. For more information on the Show or Wessex Heartbeat’s HIGH 5 Appeal ring 023 8070 6095. JANUARY 2013 • …77

J A N U A RY Your essential guide to all the local news and events in your community. THE LAWRENCE ARCHIVE a window into our past An exhibition in celebration of over 100 years of photography by J.C.Lawrence & Sons, to be held in the Gosport Gallery, behind the Gosport Museum, from Wednesday 9th January to Saturday 9th February 2013, with over 50 newly released images from the extensive archive. Entry to the exhibition is free. TABLE TOP SALE Lee-on-the-Solent Residents Association (LoSRA) Monthly Community BOOST Event -Table Top 16th January in the Methodist Church Hall, Lee High Street, Lee-on-theSolent, Set up at 9am and open to the public between 9.30am - 1pm. Meet community groups/organisations. To book a table, 6ft at £6 and 4ft at £4, payable on the day, at the BOOST events, contact Ray Harding 023 9255 1706 or Gill Masterson 023 9255 1303. IMAGES OF GOSPORT Gosport Gallery, High Street, Gosport. PO12 1NS, Thursday 17th January 7.30pm to 9pm. A slide show around Gosport as it was. Bob Harrop takes you on a tour of the town, reviving memories of how things were and the many changes that have taken place in more recent years. Streets, businesses and landmarks will be shown. Take yourself on a nostalgic trip in time. This talk is sponsored by Friends of Gosport Museum - Tickets £4, concessions £3, FoGMs Free. Please book – Booking Line 023 9252 3463, SPINNAKER HALF TERM The Spinnaker Tower is inviting kids of all ages for a half term of family fun from Saturday 16 to Sunday 24

February, with adults paying kids prices all week. Sarah Webb, general manager at the Spinnaker Tower, commented: “We’re all big kids really and I know our glass floor certainly inspires some big kid moments! The Spinnaker Tower is a great day out for all the family and with our Big Kid Prices this February half term, adults can enjoy their day out for the same price as their kids!” The Spinnaker Tower is open daily from 10am- 6pm. or call 023 9285 7520 to book in advance or to find out more! BURSLEDON MUSIC FESTIVAL This year’s festival will see the some of Hampshire’s finest live bands playing to raise money for the charity Naomi House. The Big Bursfest will chase away those winter blues. Come to Bursledon Village Hall for fun and music. Put this date in your diary – 2nd February 2013 time: 12pm – 11pm See the website for the great line-up: Food and drink provided by The Vine, the local pub. Tickets £8 or Family £15 buy online or from: Ron May Tel 02380 402787 Mob: 07543 72729 TITCHFIELD ABBEY WI The first meeting of the New Year will be held on Tuesday 8th January, starting at 9.30am at Titchfield Community Centre, when the speaker will be Mr J Pitman, whose talk is entitled “What the Butler Saw”. Visitors will be welcome and tea and coffee will be available. CHILDREN with CANCER UK CHARITY CD ‘Solent Waves’ Local singer/songwriter Scott Gray from Titchfield Common, has recently completed a charity CD for sale. Scott


Please note we need 6-8 weeks notice of events.

78… • JANUARY 2013

has spent the last six months in his spare time, singing and recording a number of popular songs and musical hits for his first album. The recording was made at Buzzard Records/ Sound Investment Recording Studio, Rockbourne, Hampshire. Another local singer songwriter with a promising future is Laura Frost from Locksheath. Laura appears on the album performing duet and backing vocal. Also appearing is a lead female vocalist, Sam Farrar from Totton. Sam sings in a Hampshire band ‘The Replays’. Every CD sold will raise £5 for the charity. Each CD costs £1.50 to produce. Total cost £6.50. Anyone interested in contributing to CHILDREN with CANCER UK, the CDs are available for purchase at Earls coffee shop, The Square, Titchfield. Cheques payable to CHILDREN with CANCER UK. SOUTHAMPTON CANAL SOCIETY Thursday 7th February Southampton Canal Society Chichester Ship Canal Trust, talk & presentation of the new projects, Visitors welcome. 7.45pm Chilworth Parish Hall, Chilworth, Southampton SO16 7JZ THE SUNDAY STORY LOUNGE The Sunday Story Lounge is a monthly performance event for all the family. Recharge your imaginations with old fashioned storytelling at its simplest, purest and most enchanting. Each month features different performers; local actors, dancers, artists and musicians, incl. the renowned Orange Apples team. Winchester Discovery Centre, Sunday 13th January 11.30am - 12.30pm. Suitable for ages 2 plus. All children must be accompanied by an adult. To book please contact the box office on 01962 873603. Cost: £3 or family ticket at £10.


Train your brain with our selection of puzzles. Solutions are printed at the bottom of the page...

mindgym ACROSS 5. Fatal mistake (5,5) 6. Nautically toward the rear (3) 8. ‘M, nice mate cooked at Christmas (9) 12. Countryside area? (4) 14. Large winged flatfish (4) 15. The ‘meat’ in 9ac. (4) 16. That to which we will all return (4) 17. The killer whale (4) 18. Journey on which one falls? (4) 19. Heather (4) 21. Sounds like your unharmonious piano would need this fish! (4) 22. Lady’s small bag for toilet items (4) 23. Preposition indicating entry (4) 24. Alp fen alp rocky? Sweet! (5,4) 29. Desire for Japanese currency? (3) 30. Hollywood at Christmas? (6,4)


DOWN 1. Upmarket stove (3) 2. Legume (4) 3. Fromage! (4) 4. Operatic song (4) 7. Blonde unknown lacking substance is decorative at Christmas (5,5) 8. Third wife of Emperor Claudius (9) 9. Native Briton (4) 10. Alcoholic drink made from honey (4) 11. French 24 (5,4) 13. Incentive from the pastry chef (6,4) 20. 5 fl. oz. (4) 21. River rising in Brecon Beacons (4) 25. Soft fibrous tissue lining rind of fruit. (4) 26. Language spoken by 9 (4) 27. Hit forThe Kinks in 1970 (4) 28. Single (3)

Hard Sudoku

Easy Sudoku 1


solutions check your answers here! COPYRIGHT

With many thanks to for the sudoku puzzles, and for supplying the crossword puzzle. 1

JANUARY 2013 • …79


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Team Greens

Tree Services

All aspects of tree work » Crown Reduction » Crown Lifts / Felling » Target Pruning

Your local papercraft supplier stockist of: • Creativity magazine • Papermania products • Anita’s outline stickers • DoCraft acrylic paint • And much more!

» Dismantling

Visit us at... The Stash, 98 West Street, Portchester

» Hedge Work

(closed Mondays)

02392 200874

» Stump Grinding » Emergency Tree Work Undertaken

Steve Allen NPTC Qualified Fully Insured


07983 622747 01489 588533

82… • JANUARY 2013

ACCOLADE SIGNS We Specialise In: Vehicle Livery Notice Boards Banners Health & Safety Signs For a free quotation call us on: 01329 662031 or 07971 469014



• Decorating • Tiling • Plumbing • Gardening • Coving • Plastering - NO JOB TOO SMALL GIVE GRAHAM A CALL ON

MOB: 07969 112748 TEL: 01329 519149

Home Improvements? Just think JHI - your local specialists

Choice of 4 Shower Doors ALL ONE


Bi-Fold Door Sizes: 760mm, 800mm, 900mm



Sizes: 800mm, 900mm

• 6mm Safety Glass • 1850mm High • 10 Year Guarantee • 50mm Adjustability Pivot Door Sizes: 760mm

Offer limited to first 20 orders. Side panels at additional cost. Contact us for further details.

800mm, 900mm








J9 A27


1200mm Slider


01489 565711 Visit our showroom 221 Locks Road, Park Gate (Find us 5 mins off J9 of M27)


JHI just home improvements


• JULY 2011 •

Berkeley has worked in partnership with English Heritage carefully restoring the magnificent 19th Century Granary & Bakery at Royal Clarence Marina. The final opportunity to be part of this unique Heritage Collection arrives in February as the last three 2 bedroom apartments of the restoration programme will be launched. Each one is rich in period character and possessing beautiful views over the marina. Don’t miss this very special opportunity to purchase – call us now to register your interest.

Only three 2 bedroom apartments available To register your interest please call 023 9252 9054 Sales Suite open daily 10am – 5pm Royal Clarence Marina, Portsmouth Harbour, Gosport PO12 1AX Proud to be a member of the Berkeley Group of companies

Our vision for your future

Details correct at time of going to press. Photography depicts Royal Clarence Marina.

Reflecting a glorious past and your next adventure Three unique restored apartments launch in February

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solentlife west  

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