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Issue 42 May 2015

Interview with susie


Find out more about the upcoming Norfolk and Norwich festival


Senior BBC Broadcast Journalist & presenter of Look East


A new Sherlock Holmes tale from our very own Steve Browning: inside!

FINEplaces FINEpeople



Find out about all of the amazing shows coming to theatres across Norwich



time for a


WE ALL GROW very attached to our kitchen, don’t we? But they do come in for such a lot of wear and tear! Now a Norwich-based company is offering a happy solution whereby you get to keep your much loved kitchen but it gets a top quality transformation. Ace Surfaces, based in Salhouse, Norwich, will sort out any minor chips on work surfaces, paint cabinets, alter finishings and more. It is a very cost effective way of getting a new look kitchen

– and an environmentally sensitive one, too. On average customers will save between 60 and 70 per cent compared to splashing out on a new kitchen. If you are having a new look bathroom, you might also like to resurface your existing bath so it matches your new décor. The process is quick and efficient, with mess and disruption kept to an absolute minimum.

01603 263842 Showroom: Salhouse, Norwich NR13 6JW


Fancy a new look kitchen or bathroom? Ace Surfaces provides the answer


‘Ace Surfaces have completed bath resurfacing for a number of our privately rented properties and for several baths within Holkham Hall. The standard of service and workmanship provided is friendly and efficient whilst being sensitive to the surrounding property’ - J STAPLETON, HOLKHAM ESTATE

FineCity Magazine Issue 42 2015


Issue 42 May 2015

Interview with SUSIE


Find out more about the upcoming Norfolk and Norwich festival


Senior BBC Broadcast Journalist & presenter of Look East

Let your true colours shine


A new Sherlock Holmes tale from our very own Steve Browning: inside!




Find out about all of the amazing shows coming to theatres across Norwich

FINELIVING Put some wow in your wardrobe! Spring/Summer collections now available

NORWICH Spring Fash A4 ads.indd 5

12/02/2015 10:15

22 FINE places

FINE people


32 FINE arts

Issue 42 Your community magazine Cover image courtesy of Susie Fowler-Watt FineCity Magazine would like to thank all those who have contributed to this issue. This includes but is not limited to: Pete Goodrum, Stephen Browning, Tony Cooper, Marie Blake and Tom Rochecom.

FINE living


Editor Jonathan Horswell Advertising Editorial Design Facebook “f ” Logo

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FineCityMag @FineCityMag

FINE motors Collect your free copy of FineCity Magazine from any of our partner locations:

Tel 01953 456789 Web Address Queens House, Queens Square, Attleborough, Norfolk. NR17 2AE.

© FineCity Magazine Disclaimer: No part of this magazine may be reproduced or used in any form or by any means, either wholly or in part, without the prior written permission of the Publisher. The views expressed by contributors are not necessarily those of the Publisher. Every effort is taken to ensure that the contents of this magazine are accurate, but the Publisher can not assume any responsibility for errors or omissions. Whilst reasonable care is taken when accepting advertisements the Publisher will not accept any resulting unsatisfactory transactions. They will, however, immediately investigate any written complaints. The Publishers reserve the right to amend such submissions and cannot accept responsibility for any loss.

2015 February | 03

Follow us on Twitter @FineCityMag

04 | May 2015

Air Jump Lands on Norfolk’s Hilltop The build of an exhilarating brand new 16 metre (52ft) high jumping tower, dubbed the ‘Air Jump’ is underway at Hilltop Outdoor Centre in North Norfolk The first activity of its kind ever in England, Air Jump has been in the planning for a year and it will take a further six weeks to complete the build. Once finished, a large wooden structural tower will be in place to provide various height platforms for people to jump off, before free-falling into a giant air bag. The varying heights include two fun level jumps at 4 metres (13ft) and 5 metres (16ft), three high adrenaline jumps at 7 metres (23ft), 8 meters (26ft) and 10 metres (33ft), as well as a 13 metre (43ft) jump planned for the near future for the most extreme adrenaline junky. With a £35,000 investment, Air Jump has been specifically designed for Hilltop Outdoor

Centre which will provide schools, businesses and the general public with the chance to take part in the unique activity, only seen before at specialist sports facilities outside of England and at promotional events. Oliver Read, Director at Hilltop Outdoor Centre said: “The idea for this new activity came from a family skiing trip where we first saw a giant air bag being used to practice big ski jumps but with the advantage of a safe landing. It was so much fun that it inspired us to bring something similar to Hilltop. We worked with a specialist company, Bag Jump, to create something unique for Hilltop’s customers, as we continue to develop our reputation as

one of the UK’s most innovative outdoor educational centres.” He added: “While being an activity that is sure to get the blood pumping, it will also help people to develop confidence and social skills as they build up the courage to dive off a platform and land directly into the three metre high air bag.” Sheila Oxtoby, Chief Executive of North Norfolk District Council will officially open Air Jump at a VIP launch event on 9th April at 10.30am. She said: “The addition of this unique and exciting activity at Hilltop Outdoor Centre in Sheringham is fantastic news for local thrill seekers and for visitors looking for an experience with a difference.

Tourist attractions contribute significantly to the wellbeing of North Norfolk’s economy and I am pleased to see a local business get a great idea off the ground that will not only attract new visitors to the area, but also support jobs for local people. I am delighted to be part of the launch of the ‘air jump’ and can’t wait to give it a go!” For further information about Hilltop Outdoor Centre and the new Air Jump, visit www.hilltopoutdoorcentre. or keep up to date with #airjump on Twitter for the latest news.

Make the most of your retirement Michael Boon is your local Equity Release Council member for professional independent advice. If you are interested in releasing a tax-free lump sum from your home then Michael will be delighted to guide you through the different types of equity release schemes available to find the best plan for your needs.

To find out more call Michael on 01508 483983 or visit

with equity release

Equity release schemes allow you to release tax-free cash from your home to boost your finances in later life • Many clients use this money to repay an existing mortgage, make home improvements, buy a new car and even go on a holiday of a life time, while others may wish to offer financial assistance to their children or to improve their own quality of life in retirement. • Business Matters is qualified and registered through the Financial Conduct Authority to offer a valuable equity release service for homeowners aged 55 or over. • Business Matters only recommend approved schemes from The Equity Release Council.


This is a lifetime mortgage, to understand the features and risks ask for a personalised illustration. Business Matters is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority No. 301141.

2015 May | 05

GoGoDragons! Following the success of GoGoGorillas! in 2013, Break charity is firing up our city centre with a blaze of dragons! This summer they will be bringing visitors to Norwich, embracing creativity and ultimately raising funds with an auction at the end of the event. GoGoDragons! is a Wild in Art event brought to Norwich by Break Charity, the presenting partner Norwich BID, together with supporting partners Almary Green and Aspiration Europe. Each of the 80 plus large dragon sculptures is sponsored by a local business, trust or group. Seven sculptures are Heritage related dragons, painted and designed by artists and community groups. The GoGoDragons! trail starts on 21st June and ends on 5th September 2015. The education partner for this project is The Forum Trust who are adding value to the project by extending this exciting event through to schools, with a medium sized dragon, an additional cross curricular pack and training. This provides many educational and community groups with the opportunity to learn more about the mythical,

06 | May 2015

historical and local connections of Dragons, as well as embrace the creative skills needed to decorate the 3D form. They will also learn about how the money raised will help vulnerable children, young people and families across East Anglia. These dragons will hit the streets of Norwich on 4th July, and will be clustered in The Forum, Intu Chapelfield, Castle Mall, Norwich Lanes and some local independents. The dragon designs were submitted by artists in November 2014 when sponsors had the opportunity to look at all the designs and choose their favourite one. The artists are all full steam ahead now and many of the designs have been completed. During January – May, some sponsors are revealing their design at a prestigious event or activity to promote their business, whilst others are keeping it completely quiet until the big launch in June. The themes of the designs fit into the following categories – Norwich & Norfolk inspired; Characters; Nature inspired; Cult

inspired; Elements and Pattern. The variety of chosen designs include: watercolour, acrylic, mosaic tiles, car parts, eagle head, rhinestones, tuppences, 3D modeling and much, much more! During the trail there are activities all over the city which are dragon related which can be followed on the dragon Facebook page, Twitter feed, Instagram or the website. The Heritage Dragons will each have their own activities ranging from medieval calligraphy, flint knapping to musical soirees and puppetry skills. Norwich City Council will be running Playday activities throughout the summer holidays with a dragon theme, as well as The Forum and Intu-Chapelfield with their individual events for children. Up-to-date information can be found on our website. There will be a trail map to find all the locations and we are working on a weekend bus ride with a bus ride to get to the dragons placed a little further out of the city centre. The trail will give the participant a series of codes that will in turn allow them to enter a competition for an incredible far flung prize in association with KLM and Norwich International Airport. This activity will be supported by an App that allows the trail

maker to find out more about Break Charity, the artist and sponsor alike, and can be downloaded later in the year. Merchandise is available through our partners Jarrolds of Norwich including GoGoMinis! which are replicas of five large GoGoDragons! Collection boxes can be downloaded through our website to allow you to collect loose change and help donate to Break Charity too. The event culminates in a last chance to see all the dragons outside The Forum on 2730th September and then the auction with T W Gaze and Jake Humphrey on Thursday 1st October 2015. Tickets for this will be available to purchase via our website.

Bure Valley Railway The latest events and offers available Broadland Boat Train Enjoy a family day out aboard The Broadland Boat Train at the Bure Valley Railway. Starting from the historic market town of Aylsham, experience the magic of steam through nine miles of Norfolk countryside, following the picturesque Bure Valley, before arriving at the Broads town of Wroxham. Then take to the water and discover the beautiful Norfolk Broads with a leisurely hour and a half cruise with guided commentary. Facilities at the Bure Valley Railway include a café, a model, toy and gift shop and a railway workshop at Aylsham with a souvenir shop at Wroxham. The Whistlestop Café seats up to 80 people and can provide everything from a cup of tea to a full meal. Free parking at both stations.

The Broadland Boat Train operates on a daily basis from the beginning of April to the end of October. Pre-booking is advisable during the school holidays. A discounted family ticket (2 adults + 2 children) is available at a cost of £59.00 and under 5’s travel free.

Everything Goes! When The Bure Valley Railway, Norfolk’s longest narrow gauge steam railway, first opened in July 1990 it had no steam locomotives of its own and had to rely on those borrowed from The Romney, Hythe & Dymchurch Railway in Kent. Twenty five years on the Railway now has five steam locomotives purpose built for the line. During the Everything Goes Weekend, 23rd - 25th May 2015, all available locomotives, coaches and rolling stock will be

in action. There will be a special intensive timetable in operation throughout the weekend to allow visitors the opportunity to see as many different locomotives as possible hard at work over the nine miles between Aylsham and Wroxham. To keep younger visitors entertained there will a competition on the train journey,with a free prize for every correct entry. The workshop at Aylsham will be open throughout the weekend and staff will be on hand to answer any questions. Andrew Barnes, Director,

says “this event will give railway enthusiasts and families alike a chance to see a collection of some of the world’s most powerful 15-inch gauge steam engines on display and in operation”. Train fares allow unlimited travel on the day of issue. Children under 5 travel free. For further information contact: Susan Munday, Bure Valley Railway, Aylsham Station, Norwich Road, Aylsham, Norfolk, NR11 6BW, Tel: 01263 733858 Website:

WISEArchive WISEArchive is a voluntary, oral history group which records the working life stories of older people from all over Norfolk.

May 23rd - 25th

WISEArchive recognises that it’s vitally important to record the history of individual working lives. Through such stories, we can understand the huge social, economic and technical changes that occur in our society over time. If we don’t record these stories now, valuable and important memories are lost to us forever. Since 2005 WISEArchive has gathered many fascinating stories including those of former employees of some of Norfolk’s major companies. So if you would like to share your working life story please get in touch. WISEArchive is currently working on a new project. We wish to record the working life stories of former Colman employees as part of the recognition of Colman’s 200 year history and importance to Norwich. If you worked for them at some point, do please get in touch, your contribution will be

valued. We plan to compile a book of the collected Colman stories and contributors will receive a copy. Your memories will go on the WISEArchive website along with many others that you can already read there. Contributors receive a transcript and CD of their story and the recording will go into the Sound Archive of the Norfolk Record Office. It is also possible to either email WISEArchive a written copy of your story or place it on the website. Old photographs and photographs of memorabilia are always welcome. If you would like to tell your story, obtain further details about WISEArchive or perhaps consider volunteering as a WISEArchive interviewer, please contact:, email or call 07413 445780. 2015 May | 07

EACH: Ride for Life New location, new routes, new entertainment Ride For Life, which is East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH) largest and longestrunning fundraising event will be better than ever thanks to a new location, new routes and new entertainment. The event, which will raise funds for the nook appeal and the charity’s current Quidenham hospice, returns for the 22nd time this year on Sunday June 14th, but instead of taking place in Santon Downham, the event has been relocated to Mayday Field on the B1106 at Elveden. The new site offers many benefits including new cycle and walk routes, an easily accessible location, a secure site without interference from traffic, no disruption to local residents and the opportunity to provide a bigger and better family fun day, with added attractions and side shows. Dedicated volunteer David Baker from Hethersett has been

08 | May 2015

involved with Ride For Life for more than 20 years. David has many responsibilities including off road cycle route planning and participant briefings. He’s also a volunteer for Norfolk & Suffolk 4x4 Response, which is responsible for vehicle Logistics which include marshal and First Aid deployment, manning water stations, sweep vehicles and if required search and rescue on the day and Raynet Forest Heath which provides radio communications; a vital service due to the lack of mobile phone coverage in the forest. David said: “The village of Santon Downham has served the event well for the past 20 years, but the event took over both of the village greens to saturation point and there was no room for expansion. “With this year being the launch of the nook appeal, we wanted to celebrate with

a bigger fun day event for the whole family to come and enjoy. “Mayday Field hosts the Mountain Bike race series successfully, so after a consultation between the EACH fundraising team and the event committee, a site meeting and recce was arranged which proved to be favourable. The Forestry Commission were approached and raised no objections, so we got on with planning the event. “There have been challenges like plotting new walk and cycle routes and ensuring we have toilet facilities, water and electricity supplies and storage on the day but it’s been great fun. Ride for Life has always been blessed with fantastic, dedicated volunteers who make this event so successful. We’re all part of a great team effort – we just need people to sign-up, take part and raise as much sponsorship as possible.” Participants can take part in 3, 6 or 12 mile forest walks, 5,10 or 25 mile off-road cycle rides and 16 or 38 mile on-road cycle rides. The 5 mile off-road cycle ride and the

12 mile walk will raise funds for the nook appeal, while funds raised from other routes will support the charity’s Quidenham hospice and current services in Norfolk. There will be stalls, activities, live music and well-earned refreshments available; making it a great day out for all. Anna Goode, EACH nook appeal coordinator, said: “The event will raise funds for the nook appeal to build a new children’s hospice and will also raise funds to support our current services in Norfolk and this is a vital message we need to get across to our supporters that we need to keep our current services going as well as raising funds for our exciting new project. “Whether you’re a dedicated cyclist or rambler, or want to try something new, please signup for a great day out with a charitable cause at its heart.” To sign-up to Ride for Life on Sunday June 14th, visit: or call the Norfolk fundraising office on: 01953 666767.

Norwich City of Ale Raise a glass to Norwich City of Ale as it returns for fifth year

The Benjamin Foundation Norfolk charity celebrates 21st year with new Norwich head office On Tuesday 21 April 2015, The Benjamin Foundation officially celebrated the opening of its new head office at 23-27 St Andrews Street, Norwich. The move to a central Norwich office marks a significant milestone for the charity which reaches its 21st birthday in October 2015. Richard Draper MBE, Founder and Chief Executive of The Benjamin Foundation, said: “We are hugely excited to have moved into our new Norwich home. Our Head Office has been in North Walsham for many years but as we have grown to become a county-wide charity it makes more sense for us to be in Norwich. The St Andrews Street premises allows many of our staff to work together for the first time and is easily accessible for our team around the county for their meetings and training.

“One of the things we all love about St Andrews Street is that the office is very quirky rather than feeling too corporate. Many of the small rooms interconnect which allows us to share ideas and information with colleagues face to face, rather than relying on email and phone.” In October 1994 The Benjamin Foundation was set up to provide a small number of rural youth services in North Norfolk. The charity is named after Benjamin Draper the much loved, eldest son of Richard and Vanessa. Richard continues: “Ben was no angel but he was a loving, funny and charismatic teenager – there was no doubt in our minds that he had a bright future ahead of him. So when we lost him at the age of 17 in a freak motorcycle accident, we were determined to try and create something positive

The annual City of Ale festival is back for its fifth year, which will see hundreds of real ale drinker’s return to the fine city of Norwich for 2015. The ten day celebration will run from 21-31st May and a number of pubs and breweries will be involved to provide fans with a selection of real ales and a party atmosphere. Fans of City of Ale can expect to take part in ale trails, pub quizzes, live music and events, whilst tasting a variety of speciality beers along the way. Dawn Leeder, Co-Chair of Norwich City of Ale said: “We want to bring people together in friendly and welcoming pubs as we promote Norwich as the UK’s Real Ale destination. Norwich is full of history and heritage. We have pubs and breweries which go back hundreds of years, so people get an experience which is more than just tasting a pint.”

The event is funded by Norwich Business Improvement District (BID) as it looks to attract more visitors to the city. Last year was the most successful City of Ale celebration to date with 44 public houses and 39 breweries taking part in the festivities. Leeder continued: “We saw a fifth of visitors come from outside our region last year which was nearly double that of the year before. Our ambition for 2015 is for the festival to continue to grow in popularity and for people to come to the city, specifically for a real ale experience.” This year’s event coincides with Radio 1’s Big Weekend, which is expected to help bring even more visitors to Norwich.

in his name. We started with just one rural youth club in North Norfolk and over the past 21 years The Benjamin Foundation has grown to employ 200 people across the county; offering a wide and diverse range of services to people of all ages. I am so thankful to all the people who have helped us reach this huge milestone: our staff, volunteers, funders, supporters and those who have inspired the services we deliver. “As we approach our 21st birthday in October both Vanessa and I are acutely aware that Ben never reached his own 21st birthday. We miss him every day but know that he would have been so proud of The Benjamin Foundation,” concludes Richard. The Benjamin Foundation now has over 30 services and helps thousands of children, young people and families every year, right across the county. Everything the charity does is about providing hope,

independence, opportunity, stability and independence for people in Norfolk. The opening of the new head office has been made possible thanks to a substantial grant awarded by the Garfield Weston Foundation.

To keep up to date with what’s on visit the website

For more information about The Benjamin Foundation, visit www.

2015 May | 09

Academy of St Thomas Annual midsummer concert at Salle Church near Reepham 7.30pm, Saturday 20th June One of Britain’s leading clarinettists, Matthew Hunt, joins the Academy of St Thomas for their annual midsummer concert at Salle Church to perform the popular Clarinet Concerto No 1 by Weber. Hunt is a distinctive musician, renowned for the vocal quality of his playing and his ability to communicate with audiences. He holds the position of solo clarinettist with the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, and is a member of the Sheffield based chamber

group Ensemble 360. A very keen chamber musician, he appears regularly with Meta4, the Chiurascuro and Elias quartets, Thomas Adès, Pekka Kuusisto, Emily Beynon, Nicholas Altstaedt, Alina Ibragimova, and La Bande de La Loingtaine. He has also appeared as a guest of the Berlin Philharmonic as a soloist in their series at the Berlin Philharmonie Kammermusik Saal. As an orchestral musician, Matt a regular guest principal with the Academy of St Martin

“The clarinettist played so beautifully it was as though he wished to make the very air of the hall melt” Tokyo Times

in the Fields and has appeared as a guest principal with the Concertgebouw and BBC Symphony Orchestras and the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. Matthew will also be giving a UK premiere of an arrangement of Jewish Kletzmer music, ‘ Dances and shrieks of silver’ by Charlie Piper which promises an exciting and fun ending to the evening. Matthew Andrews will be conducting the orchestra for two of the most well known symphonies

by Haydn and Mozart. Haydn’s No 94 known as the surprise and Mozart’s ever favourite Symphony No 40 in g minor. Audience are welcome to picnic beforehand in the grounds of this magnificent Norfolk Church. Don’t miss this eagerly anticipated concert in the musical year of Norfolk. Tickets will be on sale from Friday 1st May from Prelude Records 01603 628319

Saturday 20 June

Salle Church nr Reepham, 7.30pm




Clarinet Concerto No.1 Haydn - Symphony No 94 ‘Surprise’ Mozart - Symphony No 40 Piper - ‘Dances and Shrieks of Silver’ for clarinet and strings

Matthew Andrews - Conductor

sponsored by


Tickets on sale from 1 May 2015 Prelude Records 01603-628319

10 | May 2015

UK Eurovision Entrant Heading to Hopton-on-Sea Brian Conley and The Rollin’ Clones announced in Potters Resort’s Autumn line-up Five-star Potters Resort at Hopton-on-Sea has announced its Autumn programme of One Night Specials. Fresh from his role as the greatest showman on earth in musical Barnum, loveable funny man Brian Conley is appearing on Sunday 11th October 2015, following a 2014 sell out performance. The one night break will see the accomplished singer, comedian, chat show host, actor and West End star take to the stage in a night that includes comedy and music.  Rolling Stones tribute band The Rollin’ Clones will bring some ‘Satisfaction’, Rock ‘n’ Roll and sequinned glam to the Atlas Theatre on Sunday 20th September 2015. The Rollin’

Clones will perform a back catalogue of hits live at Potters Resort, such as ‘Paint It Black’ and ‘Wild Horses’. Amazingly band member Alex Larke, aka Mick Jagger in the band, is the Eurovision Song Contest 2015 UK entry as part of duo Electro Velvet. Guests can also look forward to a new Potters Winter Fireworks Festival on Sunday 8th November 2015, featuring a 12 hour marathon of the best live entertainment, from music and dance to comedy, specialist acts and a Cliff Top Fireworks Display.  Other Star Acts appearing at Potters Resort this year include Peter Andre on Sunday 19th April 2015, The Overtones on Sunday 31st May and Sunday

More Choice, More Variety and Local Routes for East Anglia’s Sun Seekers Thomson and First Choice increase capacity from Norwich Airport by introducing a new route for local holiday makers Thomson and First Choice are pleased to announce that in summer 2016 they will be increasing capacity at Norwich airport through the introduction of a new route to Paphos, Cyprus. The move to introduce this new route is part of the UK’s leading holiday company’s strategy to ensure customers across the UK can fly from their local airport and stay at the best hotels in some of the most exciting destinations. The new route will go sale on the 23rd April 2015. Not only will customers from Norwich be able to fly to some fantastic destinations, but they will also have the opportunity to choose varying durations – not just the standard seven and 14 night

stays. Customers travelling from the airport will also have access to some of Thomson and First Choice’s most popular flagship hotels including Thomson’s Sensatori Resort Aphrodite Hills in Cyprus – new for summer 2015 and overlooking the Mediterranean Sea and home to an award winning spa, family swim up rooms and a range of restaurants Karen Switzer, Director of Aviation Planning for Thomson and First Choice, said of the move: “Adding more capacity from East Anglia with the introduction of a new route to Paphos, Cyprus demonstrates our commitment to Norwich Airport and the local area. Following the success of the

5th July 2015, and Chas & Dave on Sunday 12th July 2015. As well as live evening entertainment in the state-of-theart Atlas Theatre, followed by dancing and music in the Terrace Bar, One Night Specials include comfortable accommodation, a five course dinner with selected wines, a midnight dish, breakfast

additional summer 2015 flights, we know that further demand is there. “Expanding access to our portfolio of destinations and hotels is a key part of our overall strategy and we hope that this move will enhance the holiday experience for our customers.” Richard Pace, Operations Director & General Manager of Norwich International Airport commented: “We are delighted that Thomson and First Choice have announced the new flight to Paphos, Cyprus for summer 2016 offering local holidaymakers more choice from their local airport. This decision further demonstrates their commitment to the airport and reflects the high level of demand from customers wishing to fly from Norwich. For more information visit

the following morning, daytime activities and extensive sports and leisure facilities. Prices for One Night Special breaks from just £114 per person. For more information on Potters Resort visit or call 0333 3207 497 to book.

TUI UK & Ireland TUI UK and Ireland is the UK’s largest tour operator with key brands including Thomson, First Choice, and Thomson Cruises. Sub brands include Thomson Sensatori, Thomson Couples, Thomson Family Resorts, First Choice Holiday Villages and SplashWorld Resorts. TUI UK and Ireland’s airline, Thomson Airways is the UK’s third largest airline with 57 aircraft operating to over 73 destinations in 20 countries. Thomson Airways was the first airline in the UK to take delivery of Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner and is flying the aircraft on long haul flights. TUI UK and Ireland employ a team of 13,300 employees and serve over 5.2 million customers each year.

2015 May | 11

Posh Plants

topiary, plants, shrubs and trees to hire or buy

Sue Huckle is the inspiration behind many award winning gardens, offering a professional and creative approach to the art and science of garden design. At Seven Acres Nursery we have a range of lovely plants and containers for sale, as well as our beautiful collection of large topiary plants available to hire for weddings, parties and your workplace!

07703 347014 email: website:

Posh Plants, Seven Acres Nursery, Common Road, East Tuddenham, NR20 3NF

Strawberry Time! The latest news from Seven Acres Nursery Spring has been a mixed bag here at Seven Acres Nursery. We’ve had some lovely warm days that would put some of our summers to shame, but we’ve also had some cold nights with late frosts. The most challenging weather for me has to be the wind. With two large polytunnels made of thin plastic it’s a wonder they’ve not taken off just recently! It helps that the nursery is sheltered from the north and west by lovely, mature, native hedges which provide homes for many species of birds. But, when it blows from the south it can be damaging, only last week we had potted up some bamboos only to have them frazzled overnight by a drying wind. The strawberry tunnel is a place of sanctuary, warm and sheltered, a perfect place for bees. Large bumble bees amaze me as they journey from flower to flower and then drink 12 | May 2015

condensation from the underside of the tunnel cover. We keep the tunnel closed up at night for warmth, so, one of the first jobs of the day is to open the sheeted doors, the smell inside is so fresh and earthy, wonderful. Each row is watered by an irrigation pipe and now the strawberries are starting to set this is an essential daily job to ensure even and steady growth. It is certainly a satisfying sight to see the rows of bushy plants becoming more verdant and healthy as each day passes, each flower becoming a small fruit ready to swell and ripen with the onset of warm weather. We were able to plant the strawberries early this year, so, they’ve had a good start and should be ready for sale at the beginning of May. I enjoy all the seasons but spring in the nursery is a lovely, manic, frantic time when all the plants, including the weeds, are growing

at their fastest. A result of this, of course, is that watering becomes a permanent occupation! Job satisfaction doesn’t get any better than working in the nursery with the warm sun on my face. Customers buying plants cannot resist the strawberries, usually returning from their car to buy a second punnet after tasting them and exclaiming... “The best strawberries I’ve ever tasted!” Here at Seven Acres Nursery as well as our range of topiary

we have seasonal vegetable and garden plants, shrubs, perennials, pots and planters, not forgetting, of course, delicious fresh picked strawberries! Enjoy! Sue Huckle, Posh Plants at Seven Acres Nursery, Common Road, East Tuddenham NR20 3NF Telephone: 07703 347014 email:

Where There is a Will, There is a Way

Will Aid Campaign Manager, Shirley Marsland, said: “The Will Aid charities are so grateful for the hard work of the team at Nicholsons. This Nicholsons Solicitors, with branches in has been a very successful Lowestoft & Norwich, have proved that campaign and overall we have already received over £1.6 million where there is a Will, there is definitely and, with donations still being a way by raising over £8,100 for charity received, we expect the final during November 2014’s Will Aid campaign. total to be nearer £2 million. The Will Aid charities will be able to put the money raised year’s fantastic result means they Will Aid clients were offered a to immediate use to make a have raised a grand total of over basic Will and asked to consider real and immediate difference £15,600 for the Will Aid charities. making a voluntary donation to the lives of the people in need Ann-Marie Matthews, Head instead of paying the firm’s in the UK and all over the world.” of the firm’s Private Client usual fees. Local will-makers Christian Aid’s Simon Snell, Department, commented on responded with enthusiasm who visited the firm to thank the the success of the campaign: and gave generously. staff involved and to present their “We’ve always been very The money raised is shared Will Aid certificate, said: enthusiastic about taking part by 9 UK charities, including “The support of in Will Aid. Having a properly ActionAid, Age UK, British Red Nicholsons is greatly made Will is the responsible Cross, Christian Aid, NSPCC, appreciated by Christian thing to do. You can make sure Save the Children, SCIAF in Aid. Will Aid is very your wishes are carried out and Scotland, Sightsavers and Trocaire important to us, as not having a valid Will makes it easier in Northern Ireland. The funds only do we receive for your children. Using the Will raised are already being put to a significant amount Aid scheme is a great way to work by the Will Aid charities. in donations, but the ensure your wishes are carried The firm has taken part in 14111 Nicholsons Advert.qxp_Layout also provides 1 07/01/2015 out while also helping charities.” JTDcampaign four Will Aid schemes, and this

an opportunity for people to leave Christian Aid a legacy. Legacy gifts are crucial in enabling our work to eradicate poverty and change the systems and structures which cause it. Legacies of all sizes are incredibly valuable to Christian Aid – last year our income from legacies could have more than paid for all our work in Latin America and the Caribbean.” If you are interested in knowing more about Will Aid, or would like to discuss a legal matter, contact Ann-Marie Matthews on 01603 478567 or email

13:06 Page 1

If you need a will, Nicholsons make it easy... Making a Will is the only way to protect your family and assets for the future. Nicholsons specialise in Will writing, inheritance tax planning, Powers of Attorney and property trusts. We pride ourselves on making the whole process as easy as possible either by meeting in our office or visiting you in the comfort of your own home. If you are interested in discussing a Will or any other legal matter contact Ann-Marie Matthews on 01603 478567 or email

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* Excluding VAT

2015 May | 13

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be purchased in off the shelf / standard sizes or made to measure sizes from Affordable Dream Kitchens’ Norwich, Norfolk showroom. The made to measure splashbacks, upstands and midway panels would normally require templating, for instance, if you required the glass to go around electrical sockets,etc. The standard sizes are easy to install into your kitchen yourself as they come with self adhesive backing. They are also very easy to maintain and are hygienic. For a full colour and size range available in brochure, please don’t hesitate to contact us. To find out more please visit

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14 | May 2015

Treat yourself to a boutique shopping experience Evening wear, prom dresses, ball gowns and bridesmaid dresses shoes, bags and accessories Jubilee House, The Street, Long Stratton Norwich, NR15 2XJ 01508 218050 |

Party & Prom - Special Dresses for Special Occasions If you’re searching for something a little bit different to wear for that special occasion, look no further than Party & Prom, a specialist boutique tucked away in the heart of Long Stratton. Party & Prom’s owner, Hazel Hallett, explains: “I am probably the biggest stockist of specialoccasion wear in South Norfolk, and many of my customers are prepared to travel for over an hour to take advantage of this – as well as the warm welcome and attention that they receive when they visit. “The best part of this job is the look on a woman’s face as she comes out of the changing room and sees her reflection in the large mirror, having found that perfect dress.” Party & Prom stocks more than 500 dresses. “I want to provide my customers with the opportunity to try a wide range of styles and colours,” says Hazel. “I have found that having a good

selection of beautifully designed dresses has helped greatly in meeting the needs of my customers, who may be attending all manner of events – a military or charity ball, a wedding, cruise or Masonic ladies evening and, of course, girls who are going to their High School Prom.” The ‘prom season’ has been an exciting time for Party & Prom with hundreds of girls snapping up their dream prom dress. And, in Hazel’s experience, buying a prom dress can be a real family affair, with everyone, including grandparents, coming along to be part of the experience. She adds: “Many girls have a good idea of the style of dress that they want to buy before they arrive, and this is helped greatly

by our extensive website that shows all our current dresses and gives a description of each.” However, with any dress it is important that you get the fit, style and colour correct for each girl and this is where Party & Prom’s experience is invaluable. “We will give honest advice every time with no high-pressure selling. We often say that the dress chooses the girl rather than the other way around! And, once you have chosen the dress, it’s time to accessorise with a pair of heels, bag and jewellery if you want to take home an outfit that is truly ready to go.” Party & Prom also offers the opportunity to book a private appointment, giving the customer individual attention and exclusive use of the shop. “Many customers

prefer to have personal attention when they are making a special purchase, and we are very happy to offer appointments when the shop isn’t open and on evenings and Sundays,” says Hazel. “We understand that our customers have busy lives and need to shop when it is convenient for them – and not just between 9am and 5pm.” Party & Prom is located in a Grade II listed building giving a quirky, intimate feel to the shop – a million miles away from the uniformity of the high street shops dominating our towns and cities. There is free parking right outside the door and time for a chat to find out what each customer really wants; good old fashioned customer service and boutique shopping at its best. Visit the website at   To book an appointment call Hazel on 01508 218050 or book online from our website or Facebook page 2015 May | 15

guest Rooms open at The Fritton Arms The Fritton Arms located at Fritton Lake in Norfolk on the Somerleyton Estate, today celebrates the official opening of its bedrooms available for dinner, bed and breakfast.

16 | May 2015


oday sees the opening of nine sumptuous bedrooms following the successful opening of The Fritton Arms as a pub and restaurant last May by Lord and Lady Somerleyton. The Fritton Arms is a unique place to stay sitting in 200 acres of mature parkland that borders the banks of Fritton Lake, known well by many local people and regular holiday makers. It offers a place to relax in comfortable surroundings where you can enjoy activities such as horse riding, walking, running, cycling and open water swimming - in fact Fritton Lake is host to an annual Triathlon

event – it also helps being one of the driest parts of the UK. The recent refurbishment of The Fritton Arms has been overseen by Lady Somerleyton and interior designer Laura Ingrams from Arie and Ingrams Design. With Ben Davenport the estate food and beverage manager, overseeing the smooth running of the pub, restaurant and rooms. The rooms are simple yet elegantly furnished with comfort in mind from goose down pillows, to soft cotton linen and luxurious bedspreads, so you can expect a piece of that perfect English country house experience. Downstairs, the ground floor provides different areas to eat, drink and relax, including a


stunning new room which has been dedicated to the love of fish, a billiard room and three cosy fireplaces that are roaring most of the time from autumn through to spring. When the sun shines there’s a chic outdoor area for those that want to drink or dine alfresco. The menu has been carefully created by the estates Michelin 2 star trained executive chef Stuart Pegg having previously worked under celebrity chef Michael Caines. Many of the dishes served to your table are sourced from the estate’s ‘larder’ including Somerleyton Welsh Black Beef, Norfolk Horn Lamb, as well as Venison and Pike from Fritton Lake. The kitchen houses an exciting and unique Italian

wood fired oven, which can roast anything from fresh pizza to Porterhouse steaks. There’s a well-stocked bar with local ales, a beautifully balanced and original wine list prepared by manager Ben Davenport and an eclectic range of spirits can be found on the top shelf, including some rare bottles of rum and bourbon that you’re unlikely to find anywhere else around. Ben, who heads up hospitality across the entire estate’s food and beverage businesses is a local born and bred Suffolk boy and comes from a Michelin pub background having previously worked at The Red Lion at East Chisenbury. Ben said ‘We’ve had great feedback from guests following

the soft launch of some of the rooms in spring’. He added “what guests really seem to like, is the laid back feel of the place and there’s certainly no chance of getting bored with so many activities here. Having said that, some guest simply just pitching up, kick back and do absolutely nothing whilst they’re here”. And it doesn’t stop there, 2015 will see Lord Somerleyton and his team introduce five stunning new safari tents to offer the very top end of luxury camping. A private dining room will be introduced during the summer for private and corporate events. Plus, the bedrooms will constantly evolve with makeovers and new bedrooms to be introduced over

the next 12 months. Keep an eye on the Somerleyton website for details ❏ The Fritton Arms is located on Church Lane, Fritton, Norfolk NR31 9HA. Opening times for non-residents are Monday to Saturday noon until 11pm and until 10.30pm on Sundays. The kitchen is open for food Monday to Saturday noon until 2.30pm and then again 6.30pm until 9pm and Sunday from noon until 5pm. To make a reservation visit or call 01493 484008. Facebook:, Twitter: @FrittonArms 2015 May | 17

Venice, Verona & Lake Garda 8 days from £799* Departs 30 September 2015 A choice of accommodation on Italy’s largest lake, and some wonderful excursions, as well as a Grand Circular Tour of the lake, ensure the popularity of this great value escorted holiday.

Tour highlights

Spend a week on the sun-kissed shores of glorious Lake Garda ■■ Enjoy a full-day visit to incomparable Venice ■■ Discover the glories of Roman Verona, city of ‘Romeo and Juliet’ ■■ Journey through the Dolomite mountains ■■ Enjoy a ‘Grand Circular Tour’ of Lake Garda ■■ Fully escorted by a friendly, experienced tour manager ■■ Seven nights’ three-star dinner, bed and breakfast hotel accommodation, return flights and transfers ■■

Discover Italy

flying direct from Norwich

Capri, Pompeii & the Amalfi Coast

Lake Garda

Sorrento & the Bay of Naples 8 days from £933* Departs 22 September 2015 Discover the charm and warm hospitality of the Neapolitan Riviera, one of the Mediterranean’s most highly favoured corners.

Tour highlights

Spend a week in the blissful surroundings of the Neapolitan Riviera ■■ Visit the extraordinary ruins of Pompeii ■■ Travel to see Mount Vesuvius’ brooding cone ■■ Enjoy a full day on the enchanting Isle of Capri ■■ Journey along the famous Amalfi Drive, one of Europe’s most scenic coastal roads ■■ Fully escorted by a friendly, experienced tour manager ■■ Seven nights’ dinner, bed and breakfast hotel accommodation, return flights and transfers ■■

8 days from £599* Departs 9 June & 22 September 2015 ‘Built between the sky and the sea’ looking out over blue waters, Sorrento is one of the Med’s greatest treasures. If anywhere might justifiably be described as ‘holiday heaven’, this exquisite corner of Italy is it. At the end of the long sweep of the Bay of Naples, curving from the bustling city beneath the brooding cone of Vesuvius, the ‘Sorrentine peninsula’ juts out into blue waters, the very picture of Mediterranean perfection.

Tour highlights

Seven nights’ bed and breakfast accommodation at the Villa Angelina in Sant’ Agata – a range of nine hotels in two resorts are available at a supplement ■■ Return flights to Italy ■■ Return airport-to-hotel transfers ■■ The services of a friendly, experienced resort based manager ■■

8 days from £549* Departs 30 September 2015 Offering a taste of the Mediterranean along its sunny shores, idyllic Garda is the perfect ‘lakes and mountains’ holiday choice. This is a wonderful chance to enjoy a stay on the shores of this, Italy’s largest and most spectacular lake. Its clear blue waters, backed by the wooded slopes of craggy mountains, are fringed by stylish, elegant resorts, completing the perfect picture-postcard scene that has drawn visitors for the last hundred years.

Tour highlights

Seven nights’ carefully chosen hotel accommodation – a range of 21 hotels in four resorts are available at a supplement ■■ Return flights to Italy ■■ Return airport-to-hotel transfers ■■ The services of a friendly, experienced resort based manager ■■

Call 01603 428700 or book online at or pop in to Travel Norwich Airport at the airport or Castle Mall, Norwich Organised by Newmarket Air Holidays Ltd, McMillan House, Cheam Common Road, Worcester Park KT4 8RQ. ABTA V7812 ATOL Protected 2325. *Prices exclude £10 per adult Norwich Airport Development Fee payable at the airport.


feature by:

Marie Blake Writer @realmarieblake

Small Girl in a Big City Writer Marie Blake reflects on her first year in Norwich, plus some favourite places


k, so I’m not that small, I’m actually 5ft 8” so some would say I’m on the tall side. Regardless, when I first moved to Norwich I felt very small indeed. I lost count of the number of times I got lost. On my first appointment I printed off a map, yes a map and navigated my way through the windy back roads. Back in January last year I made the move from the country town of Exeter in Devon all the way to the fine city of Norwich. Despite

a nightmare move which included running out of petrol on the motorway then realising the van door was still open mid journey, we made it and it was time to make Norwich my new home; What I love most about Norwich is that there is something for everyone. There is the modern, sleek chapel field with swanky chain restaurants and all the latest fashions on the high-street under one roof. Then there is the quirky bohemian side of Norwich with quaint bistros and unique boutiques. Among these some

of my favourites are the Old Bicycle shop in Norwich (It doesn’t sell bicycles) It’s a gorgeous quirky restaurant and bar which not only looks and feels beautiful, the food is good too – plus they allow dogs! What more could you want? I also love Prime restaurant in Norwich – cooking your own steaks on hot volcanic rock is not only delicious but a great experience. Speaking of steaks Middleton’s Steak House is one of my favourites for a romantic meal or a lovely lunch with friends, not only is it delicious they also do some fantastic deals too so look out for them. I still haven’t managed to eat in nearly half the restaurants and bars in Norwich (despite lack of trying). I love the cobbled streets and picturesque buildings. I could spend a fortune on all the stunning items for sale. Not to mention the huge market place selling everything you could need. When I tell people about Norwich I explain firstly what a lovely city it is and secondly how proud people

are to live there. It’s something you rarely find especially with the younger generation, so often I seen people mocking their home town and being ashamed of it. Not in Norwich, People loved it. I also love the enthusiasm for the arts, I’m a trained Actress but remember feeling a bit ashamed when I was younger like this thing I love was so embarrassing and in my home town it wasn’t encouraged as much at it is here, people can be who they are no matter how unique. I teach the early stages group at Stagecoach Theatre School on a Saturday in Norwich I love to help this creativity and confidence grow! I love the street artists of all different kinds and the passion that people feel especially for their beloved football team Norwich City. So I may not feel so small anymore (maybe not quite 5ft 8” yet though!) There are still tons of hidden gems I can’t wait to explore. It make me start to wonder, is there any finer City? ❏ 2015 May | 19


The Spa at Barnham Broom You don’t have to travel far to feel like you’re getting away from it all…


tepping through the doors of the Spa at Barnham Broom is like stepping into another world – one where your worries will just melt away and you can enjoy some guilt-free pampering in luxurious surroundings. Nestled in beautiful rolling countryside, just 10 miles from Norwich, The Spa at Barnham Broom is the perfect location to spoil yourself with some welldeserved rest and relaxation. There you will find an extensive menu of holistic and beauty treatments to choose from, including specially tailored aromatherapy, deep tissue and hot stone massages, 20 | May 2015

personalised ESPA facials targeted to your skincare concerns, body scrubs and wraps, Reiki, reflexology, waxing, manicures, pedicures and more. There is also a men’s treatment menu too – including facials, massages and nails treatments. And a range of packages is on offer so you can really make the most of your me-time. The Spa Celebration Experience is £65 per person and includes a treatment of your choice, a light lunch or afternoon tea, full use of the hotel’s facilities, including the swimming pool, sauna, steam room and gym, and robe and slipper hire for the day. It’s the perfect package for a get-together with the girls – whether it’s a hen party, birthday


celebration, baby shower (treatments specially-tailored for mums-to-be are available), mum and daughter’s day out or you simply fancy a bit of a treat. The Spa has seven therapists and treatment rooms all come with their own private bathroom. Lit with soothing candles and scented with uplifting aromatherapy oils, you will soon be feeling refreshed and radiant. Barnham Broom pride themselves on providing the best spa treatments which also means using the highest quality spa products. Ranges from ESPA, St Tropez, Mii and Jessica have been chosen for their unsurpassed luxury and fantastic results. If you’ve got a special event coming up, why not book in at the

beauty bar? There you can have your hair and make-up done and perhaps have a spray tan. And if you’ve got a really big day ahead of you, special beauty packages for brides-to-be are available. Or perhaps you’re jetting off on holiday – make sure you’re beach ready by booking in for a manicure, pedicure and wax. With 46 chic and contemporary bedrooms, the award-winning Brasserie restaurant, two of Norfolk’s finest golf courses and the state of the art Edge Health and Fitness Club too, Barnham Broom truly is your destination for relaxation. Spa Celebration Experience – most popular Spa Day Ideal for hen parties, birthday celebrations or for whenever

you are indulging with friends and simply all want different treatments, but to still enjoy the day together. • Use of the swimming pool, sauna, steam room & gym • Choice of a light lunch or afternoon tea • Robe and Slipper hire for the day Choose your treatment: • ESPA aromatherapy full body massage • ESPA prescriptive Aromatherapy facial • ESPA Salt and oil body polish, facial cleanse, and scalp massage • Express manicure and Express pedicure

• Make up lesson • ESPA oriental head massage, facial cleanse, and face massage • P  rescriptive manicure with polish or GELeration • P  edicure with polish or GELeration One treatment each £65 Two treatments each £105 The Spa at Barnham Broom Honingham Road, Norwich, NR9 4DD. Call 01603 759393 Website: Email: Special offers are regularly featured online: 2015 May | 21

22 | May 2014


Susie Fowler -Watt Pete Goodrum meets Susie FowlerWatt; Senior BBC Broadcast Journalist and presenter of Look East


e’re in the offices of the BBC, in Norwich. Susie Fowler-Watt has met me in reception, and apologising for being late, needlessly, because she isn’t, she’s whisked me into a meeting room, where we instantly begin to talk. That ‘instantly’ is important, because Susie Fowler-Watt is, if I can choose one word at the outset to describe her, engaging. It would be easy to put that down to her job. She is after all on your screen, engaging you in the news most nights. But it’s more than that. It might be a gift that sits well with her work but she is naturally communicative, affable and, frankly, charming. Also, there’s none of that ‘she looks different when you see her in real life’ thing, so often bandied around about people in the public eye, and especially those who appear on television. Sitting across the table from me she is as immaculate as she is on screen, and every bit as poised. She will, during our conversation, refer to ‘what you see is what you get’, and she’ll mean it rather self deprecatingly. I say it as a compliment. None of this means that she lacks confidence. That’s a quality that she’s demonstrated many times in her life and career, and I’ll come back to it. But first, some background biography. Susie was born in Sussex, where her parents ran a school. He father had been made Head the term before she was born, and she grew up there. She was educated there too, initially, and was the only female pupil. I comment on the fact that some biography details of her refer to her having ‘very much enjoyed that’. She laughs, and points out that it’s not quite as saucy as it sounds. ‘We’re talking about me between the ages of 7 and 10’ she says. ‘I had two brothers, and was always a bit of a tomboy. I didn’t play football or rugby, but I did play cricket. Frankly I didn’t really think about the situation much. You don’t over analyse things at that age, and it was all I knew. But, it is true to say that I loved being there. The realisation that it was an unusual situation only hit me when I went to an all girls school. feature by: It was a culture shock!’ Pete Goodrum She completed her ‘A’ Levels Writer, broadcaster @petegoodrum early and by the time she was sixteen she already had a place

at Cambridge University, and was on a gap year in the USA. It was to prove a pivotal year. Her course at Cambridge was to be her route into medicine; the plan was to be a doctor. ‘ I changed my mind when I was in the states’, she explains. ‘I was at The Hotchkiss School in Connecticut, on a scholarship from The English Speaking Union. The school was fantastic, and with my place at university already agreed there was no pressure to perform. It was the time of my life’. There may not have been pressure to perform academically, but perform she did. In amongst studying American Literature and Drama she acted, and she was in a band. She’s seventeen, and in a band. In Amercia! I need to know more. ‘There were boys who played the instruments, but we saw it as a girl band. The girls sang, taking turns on the solos. I, unbelievably it seems now, got the job of singing Bob Marley’s ‘Stir it Up’.’ And America did stir it up. ‘I’d been studying some philosophy there and I decided that I didn’t want to be a doctor. I did have some feelings of guilt, because places to study medicine at Cambridge are sought after, and here I was asking my tutor if I could switch to philosophy and experimental psychology, with the new aim of becoming a clinical psychologist’. She changed course, despite, as she says, ‘My mother saying, ‘and what on earth does philosophy lead to?’’ It didn’t take her into clinical psychology. ‘I had a friend at university who led me into working on the student magazine, and I discovered I loved writing. Broadcasting came into the frame through my sister in law who worked at the BBC. And, to be honest, I saw journalism as a faster route into the world of work than the further studying needed for psychology. The next step was a post graduate course diploma in Broadcast Journalism at the London College of Printing, having been awarded a BBC bursary. These twists and turns in her fledgling career might seem to indicate a lack of planning. She doesn’t deny it. But she does have firm, and positive, views on it. Firstly she says, ‘It does seem like I was changing my mind, but I always say to younger people now that sometimes you have to seize opportunities and go where events and developments take you. Life isn’t always mapped out, and you seldom know exactly what you want to do when you’re in your formative years’. Secondly she addresses a very real point. Broadcast journalism really did pull together and draw on all of the elements that make Susie tick. She’d acted at Connecticut and Cambridge, and broadcasting has an element of performance within it. In fact, acting is in the family; her aunt is President of the Society of London Theatre. She’d had a taste of journalism at university, and loved it. And psychology and philosophy? They would prove more than useful as we shall see. There would be changes of job in the future, but no more changes of overall direction. Susie Fowler-Watt was a broadcast journalist. After a brief spell at BBC Radio Surrey in 1991 she joined BBC Radio Suffolk as a reporter in Lowestoft. Local radio she says is a great way to learn. ‘I had to do everything. I can clearly recall working out of a cupboard! There was no sound proofing for recording, and on one  2015 May | 23


occasion I was taking instructions, by phone, from an engineer on which wires to plug in where. I kept saying to myself, ‘I will not cry.’’ Stints in Bury St Edmunds, Ipswich and Surrey again followed, making up some three years in regional radio. Then came a step change. She moved to Westminster to work in political journalism, and television. Starting as an Assistant Producer, she worked on BBC2 programmes like Westminster Live and The Midnight Hour, and then became a regional political correspondent. ‘A week after I started, John Smith, the Labour leader died, and from that moment on, and certainly up to and through the 1997 election and the beginning of the Tony Blair era, politics was top of the national agenda. It was a terrific time to be there, to be involved’. She says this with genuine nostalgia for an important, and plainly exciting time, in her life, but there’s a very real sense that she knows the dates and the names in a truly professional way too. This is a woman who by the time she was 26 was working as a Lobby Correspondent, in the front of line of political journalism. She was interviewing Prime Ministers. By any standards it’s worthy of note as a serious achievement. With characteristic modesty, and enthusiasm, Susie Fowler-Watt is at pains to point out that it was a privilege. I can see her point, but such privilege is not given easily. It’s a matter of record that a former boss once described her as ‘one of those people who sets her sights on what’s to be done, and goes all out for it. She has drive’. Listening to her it’s easy to believe that significant career events have ‘just happened’, and to an extent there has been an element of that. But make no bones about the fact that however she arrived at a job, once she’s on it, she pursues it with a laser like attention to the task to get it done as professionally as possible. It was professional objectivity that had made her start to wonder about what came next. ‘The political climate changed. I wasn’t sure I wanted to be in Westminster any more. I’d loved it, but I had a feeling that I’d seen the best of it. Within days of the 1997 election I’d been offered the chance to be a presenter at BBC EAST. I jumped at it’. 24 | May 2015

“I love it that people know me, and come up to speak to me, but I see my position as a privilege” ‘I think’, she says, ‘that Stewart White had had a hand in it. He’d seen some of my work and put in a word when they were looking for a new presenter’. It’s said with obvious gratitude and affection for her now long term co-presenter, for whom she plainly has the highest professional regard. ‘We’re colleagues, and friends. It makes difference’. She wasn’t exactly connecting wires in a cupboard this time, but it was another baptism of fire. ‘I came up on the Monday morning, and I was presenting, on air, that night!’ The ‘trial’ proved successful. ‘I’m still here!’ And indeed she is. Susie Fowler-Watt is an integral part of the region’s broadcast news. Her’s is a face that we see nightly, in our living rooms. As she says herself, people have grown up watching her. It could be argued that that means she is a ‘celebrity’. It’s not an argument I recommend pursuing. Firstly, she’s way too modest a person to even believe that. She is genuinely surprised at how recognisable, and recognised she is. ‘I love it that people know me,


and come up to speak to me, but I see my position as a privilege. I’m ordinary looking and I’m totally normal’. I’m not sure I would agree with either point, because she has a real charisma, but she brings it into hilarious focus by acting out for me a frequent supermarket scenario. ‘People often talk as if I’m not there. ‘Is that her? That’s Susie Fowler-Watt.’ It’s lovely but I am tempted to say sometimes, ‘Yes. it’s me. I have to do the shopping. Like you do’. The shopping, and the school runs and all the other domestic matters have to be attended to because she is a working mum, ‘juggling it all, the work and the child care’. Her husband is Alex Dunlop, who is a BBC reporter. ‘It was an office romance’ she says. They have two children, Lola who is 10, and Hugo who is 2. They live in South Norfolk , ‘with a dog, cat, and chickens’. Life is busy, and some biographical details on her which quote her as saying that her leisure time is spent with her feet up reading the papers are she says ‘out of date. there

is no feet up time now! That said, my one luxurious hobby is that I am in the Philharmonic Chorus.’ Given the chance to relax their abiding passions are the cinema and theatre, but visits are more rare than they would like. What hasn’t changed from that earlier biography is her obsession (her word) with ‘Grease’. The soundtrack album was her first record purchase, and she admits to the biographer’s claim that she had a John Travolta doll. ‘It wasn’t pleasant’ she adds now. These reminiscences and personal insights have all been discussed with real warmth, and she can be genuinely funny. Her face lights up when she smiles, and her laughter is infectious. But our talk is coming to an end and I want to find out more about her work. Her craft. It’s a rewarding seam. I ask her about the cut and thrust of, mainly, political interviewing. How does it feel to question one person, rigorously, and then turn the argument on its head to challenge somebody of opposing views. Her answer is truly profound, and  2015 May | 25

FINEPeople must have its roots in the philosophy she’s studied. There is no hesitation, no pause for construction or effect. She simply says, ‘Devil’s advocacy is not the same as opinions’. It’s perfect. Have you ever had the process explained so succinctly? I haven’t. In fact she is so passionate about the objectivity of her craft that she goes on to say that interviewees have no idea of her beliefs. ‘Even people I work with here have no idea about my personal beliefs’. That masking of what she believes, in the interests of professional journalism, does not mean that she presents a false image of herself though. Quite the contrary. When I ask her for the magic ingredient that makes a broadcaster credible she’s quick to answer, ‘Be yourself’. We talk in more detail about the technical demands. The tone of voice, the dealing with emotional stories and the sometimes standing, sometimes sitting, styles of the modern news programme. What emerges is her determination to engage with

“The best advice I was ever given is this: be yourself, but on a really good day”

and you have to be able to deal with it all, including the presenting itself, the technology and the demands of live tv’. I think the problem is rather like that suffered by Fred Astaire. He worked so hard at his craft, endlessly perfecting it that, to the viewer, it looked easy. Susie Fowler-Watts’s sheer professionalism is such that her work looks much simpler than it is. And the biggest accomplishment of all? For all those demands, for all that journalistic integrity and objectivity - what you see really is what you get. The tables are turned. It was my turn to be in a privileged position. The chance to spend a couple of hours talking with one of the most engaging and professional broadcast journalists you’ll find; and to find that she’s one of the nicest and most natural people you’ll meet. Leaving the building, those words of her’s came back to me. After a couple of hours talking with Susie FowlerWatt, I felt like me - on a really good day! ❏

the viewer. To see things as the viewer sees it; to ask the questions the viewer would ask. And underneath it all is her persistent belief, or realisation, that she is in a privileged position. On a lighter note, but still conscious of privilege, she explains that aside from the ‘news’ she does have wonderful opportunities to meet and interview people for feature programmes. ‘Emma Freud was fantastic. I interviewed Shirley Williams to talk about her mother’s writing which was wonderful’. She beams. ‘I met Jason Donovan! My life was made!’ We’ve talked for quite a while. She’s been remarkably generous with her time. In fact we’ve decamped to another room having outstayed the time slot booked for the meeting room. It’s because she’s so buoyant, so communicative, that I ask her - you must have down days. How do you deal with that when you have to present, on tv? Her answer is further testament to her professionalism. ‘Of course it happens. A cold. A bad headache. It’s thirty minutes on air. Punch through it’. This time she does pause for a moment, and then adds, ‘I think the best advice I was ever given about presenting is this. ‘Be yourself - but on a really good day’’. Earlier in our conversation Susie had told me that one thing did make her cross. It was the belief that her job was simple. ‘It’s not. I’m not a show and go presenter. There’s writing and research to do. There are a hundred things going on around you, 26 | May 2015

The Five Problems 1. Future Re-marriage Say a husband dies rst and leaves everything to the wife. The wife then remarries and dies before the second husband. Her estate transfers to the second husband. He means to make a Will to put things right but does not get round to it and accordingly on his death the whole estate devolves to his children and the children of the original couple are disinherited. 2. Large Probate Fees Probate costs are often much higher than people expect. With fees from some solicitors often in tens of thousands of pounds, with a modest estate of £350,000 at a 3% charge the fees would be £10,500. Not only that, there is the inconvenience and normally substantial delay in administering someone’s estate especially on the second death. 3. Unreliable Children Unfortunately there are many clients who have children with problems, whether they be drug, alcohol or gambling problems or indeed children with unstable marriages. When the parent dies, it is therefore not advisable that a large proportion of the estate devolves to such children but, of course, that is what usually happens. 4. Incapacity If you nd yourself in the position of incapacity due to injury or illness and have not nominated an attorney to take over your affairs, the only way forward is to apply to the Office of the Public Guardian, which can be costly and difficult for family to deal with. 5. Care Costs You may never have thought about long term care costs before or you may already know of someone who has been forced to sell the family home in order to pay for care fees. It may also be something you don’t want to think about, especially if you are in good health, but the statistics regarding long-term care make for sombre reading.

How does a Family Asset Protection Trust work? Consider the Trust as a safety deposit box in which you place your house. Your trustees hold the keys but they only take their instructions from you, the settlor. No one else can access the deposit box without your authority, not even the local authority. In fact as far as they are concerned, you no longer own your house. The idea of the trust is to keep your home safely away from care fee assessment, future probate costs, problems if you become incapacitated or unreliable children, but not away from you.

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Edith Cavell

2015 marks the 100th anniversary of the untimely and controversial death of Edith Cavell. How did this dedicated Christian and remarkably talented nurse come to be mixed up in charges of treason and subsequently shot by the Germans? Stephen Browning takes a look at her life, the events leading up to what the Allies saw as an act of barbarism, and her legacy today.

28 | May 2015

The memorial on its new site beside the Erpingham Gate

feature by:

Steve Browning Writer @returningperson


Edith Cavell (seated centre) with a group of trainee nurses on her course in Brussels

Queen Alexandra unveils the memorial to Edith Cavell, October 12 1918

Edith Cavell with her beloved dogs

early life

Edith Cavell was born in Swardeston, a village near Norwich, on December 4th 1865. Her father, the Reverend Frederick Cavell, something of a puritan, was vicar there for 45 years. She was the eldest of four – her siblings being Florence, Lillian and Jack. Edith grew up in the Christian faith, although reputedly finding her father’s Sunday sermons boring. The rectory was, however, far from humourless, as her father had the Dickensian knack of entertaining his children by dressing up, memorably as a bear, and there was much laughter in the house. Revd Frederick was very much a man who followed up his Christian convictions, paying for much of the rectory in which they finally settled - out of his own wages and insisting that half of Sunday lunch, following the family’s trip to church, was for them and the other half for the needy of the parish

Off to Norwich for schooling

Edith was initially educated at home but then attended Norwich High School in Theatre Street. At age 16 she was sent away to be

educated, notably to Kensington and then Bristol, and it is at this time that she discovered the talent for foreign languages, especially French, which was to have a crucial bearing on where she went in her subsequent life. After spending some time as a governess in Brussels, she returned to Swardeston in 1895 to nurse her sick father, and many believe that it was this experience that convinced her that she had a vocation for nursing. In 1896 she enrolled in a nurses’ training course in London. Once qualified, she worked at several hospital institutions for the poor in England before being asked, in 1907, to go to Brussels where she set up and ran a course for nurses at the famed Berkendael Institute. ‘Her’ nurses become well-known and much sought after. It is here that we find her upon the outbreak of the Great War.

Hiding soldiers

Initially, whilst supervising the nurses here, she was asked to hide two Allied soldiers in the Institute prior to their escape back to England, a request to which she agreed, successfully keeping their existence secret

“Ask Father Gahan to tell my loved ones later on that my soul, as I believe, is safe, and that I am glad to die for my country ” The last words of Edith Cavell

for two weeks. What happened next is still open to debate. Some claim that she was approached by the English Secret Services, while others claim that her actions were simply the result of compassion. At any event, she subsequently hid and helped 200 soldiers to return home. Disaster struck on July 31 1915 when two members of her ‘escape team’ were captured by the Germans. Five days later, Edith was arrested and underwent several days of intensive interrogation. This period, too, is still shrouded in mystery, as some claim that her subsequent ‘confession’ was the result of a trick as she was told that her friends would receive a degree of leniency if she wrote down all she knew. It is possible that the Germans actually had no hard evidence up to that time

and that by filling in details of her actions in a mistaken attempt to help her friends, she actually signed her own life away. She was kept in solitary confinement before being tried. The main language of the court was, of course, German, a language Edith did not understand. Her own choice for someone to represent her was denied and the representative for her defence appointed by the enemy. She was convicted of treason, which many considered laughable in itself: a much more credible charge would have been espionage, which carried considerably lighter penalties. She was sentenced to be shot, a pronouncement that horrified neutral powers, like America, and many were the frantic efforts to negotiate with the occupying Germans, all to no avail.  2015 May | 29


Edith Cavell’s Grave today alongside Norwich Cathedral: ‘To The Pure and Holy Memory of Edith Cavell Who Gave Her Life for England’

Above: Propaganda stamp issued shortly after her death above right: A contemporary poster published in France after the shooting: note the weeping angel

The body is carried into the cathedral, March 1919

‘Patriotism is not enough…’

On the night before her death, she famously remarked that ‘Patriotism is not enough’, as she would willingly have helped a soldier from any country. She was shot at dawn on October 12 1915 and hurriedly buried near to the prison by local Belgian women. Her last words are given above.

Memorial Home

A very proud day for Norwich was when Queen Alexandra, accompanied by Princess Victoria, came to the city on October 12th, 1918. She opened the Cavell Memorial Home and unveiled a memorial, the same one which can be seen today, although at the time it was situated in what would be the middle of the small roundabout at the front of the Maids Head Hotel. It was subsequently moved a few yards to the position it occupies today.

Bringing her back to Norwich

After the war, moves were made to bring Edith Cavell back from Brussels to England. Her family were offered the option of burying her in Westminster Abbey in London but this was turned down in favour of the Fine City. 30 | May 2015

Exhumed on March 17th, 1919, her body was found to be well preserved and the features still recognisable. On May 13th, it was taken to the station, escorted by British troops on the initiative of a certain Major B.L. Montgomery (later Viscount Montgomery of Alamein), then to Ostend and from there was taken by HMS Rowena to Dover, where a peal of grandsire triples was rung with all bells muffled bar the tenor. With 5,040 changes, it took three hours and three minutes. A special railway carriage bore the coffin to London on May 15th, accompanied by members of the Cavell family, and a horsedrawn gun carriage took it through streets lined with spectators to Westminster Abbey, where a funeral service was attended by George V. Thence it travelled to Liverpool Street Station and then by train to Norwich, where the coffin was placed on another gun carriage and escorted to the cathedral by soldiers of the Norfolk Regiment for burial outside the south transept, after a service with a sermon by the Bishop of Norfolk.


London has a memorial to Edith Cavell, designed by Sir George Frampton and unveiled in 1920,

near Trafalgar Square. There is also a Cavell Street in the East End. She is credited with making Edith a popular name for girls and, indeed, it was very common for a while, one of the most famous perhaps being Edith Piaf. There is a memorial to her just outside the Erpingham Gate which leads into the Anglican Cathedral (the gate is named after another Norwich hero, Sir Thomas Erpingham who led the victorious archers at the Battle of Agincourt: look up to see a statue of him in prayer, thanking God for having saved his life) and, almost opposite, a pub bearing her name.

The legacy

During the Great War itself, she is credited with encouraging tens of thousands of men to sign up. The press was incandescent in its rage and posters appeared asking who would avenge the brutal murder of this English sister of mercy by the barbarous Hun. Many enquiries about her life were directed to Swardeston including one, reported by the Eastern Daily Press, from an overseas admirer requesting the exact specifications of the rectory in which she was raised in order to build a replica in tribute.

She is very much still a figure of discussion today, partly because a legend has grown up around her. As already mentioned there are question marks as to exactly why she did what she did and how she did it. In addition, why, ask some, when caught did she attend court in day clothes, not in nursing uniform – which may have elicited sympathy - and why did she tell the truth so readily, making no attempt to be what we call today ‘economical’ with it? Why was she not more careful? Today, there is a campaign to issue a note of the Realm – possibly a £20 one – to commemorate her courage. Whatever the whole truth may be and whether or not it will ever be fully revealed, it is fitting that we pay tribute to a remarkable, unbelievably brave, and dedicated nurse who died for her country exactly 100 years ago this year. ❏ This article is based on material from ‘Norwich in the Great War’ by Stephen Browning which will be published shortly by Pen and Sword Books, paperback, priced at 9.99. Please visit Stephen Browning’s webpage stevebrowning books

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House Gospel Choir

Norfolk & Norwich Festival The Norfolk & Norwich Festival comes around this month offering a brilliant, varied and entertaining programme in a cultural extravaganza like no other. Tony Cooper reports

32 | May 2015


he major theatrical highlight of this year’s N&N Festival (8th-24th May) - the flagship of East Anglian arts festivals - is a commissioned work from acclaimed outdoor theatre-makers, WildWorks. Featuring original music performed live with a professional cast of 13 working alongside 50 local participants, their new creation, Wolf’s Child (produced in association with the festival) will see audience members stomping around Nature’s garden in the dense and wild woodland surrounding the National Trust’s 17th-century house near Cromer - Felbrigg Hall. (On an historical note, the last owner of the house before it passed into the stewardship of the National Trust in 1969 was Robert Wyndham Ketton-Cremer, who was a great supporter of the old Norfolk & Norwich Triennial Festival, the forerunner of the current festival.) Wolf’s Child, however, is partly inspired by the ancient Greek myth of Callisto who became a beast and was killed by her own hunter son and also the astonishing true story of Norfolk-born animal researcher Shaun Ellis who spent two years as a fully-integrated member of an Idaho wolf-pack shunning all human contact. The piece - which could well be described as an extraordinary grown-up fairytale focusing on love and betrayal - opens in broad daylight against the magnificent backdrop of Felbrigg Hall but as dusk approaches the scenario changes and takes on another

Andy Morgan


Steve Tanner

Songhoy Blues

feature by:

Tony Cooper Writer

dimension, an ‘otherworldly’ journey through the trees and scrub to places of magical transformation where crows talk and wolves sing and where one disobedient serving maid discovers her inner beast. The festival also commissioned Circa - the Australian-based contemporary circus troupe under the direction of Yaron Lifschitz - to create a new work in celebration of their first decade as an international touring outfit. The result, What Will Have Been, features awe-inspiring acrobatics and extreme beauty with the action set to a live rendition of Bach’s Partita for violin heard against a spine-tingling electronic soundtrack performed within the intimacy, atmosphere and confines of the Adnams Spiegeltent based in Chapelfield Gardens. Late live music takes in everything at the Adnams Spiegeltent the beating heart of the festival - ranging from the explosive desert blues of Songhoy Blues (described by BBC6 Music as ‘The Malian Beatles’) to the uplifting feel-good sounds of House Gospel Choir as well as genre-hopping Brazilian singer, Flavia Coelho. And in her smash-hit stand-up show High Heels in Low Places, Ireland’s iconic drag queen Panti discusses the controversy caused when she accused several establishment Irish figures of homophobia. There’s also former Everything But The Girl singer-songwriter Tracey Thorn discussing her new book Naked at the Albert Hall plus the usual round of tea dances and social events for toddlers and the young at heart.

Wolf’s Child

And one show that should find great appeal to youngsters in the Adnams Spiegeltent unfolds with Sensacional, a sensory spectacular for very young children from 18 months to three years. But for those children slightly older (five plus) they’re invited to explore the textile world of Forest Fruit, an installation at Norwich Puppet Theatre that creates a miniature world where a child’s playful imagination is stimulated to create their own patchwork of stories. Another exciting commission, The Observatory, features the magnificent and enterprising The Voice Project (founded in 2008 by Sian Croose and Jonathan Baker) in a show exploring humankind’s relationship with space and one’s attempts to understand it. A sitespecific promenade performance, it takes place in and around the Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts (UEA) bringing together a 200-strong choir together with soloists, musicians (including pedal-steel guitar maestro, BJ Cole) and composers Orlando Gough, Karen Wimhurst and Jonathan Baker. The festival’s rich on the classical/choral music front too and a cocommission with the festival and Norwich Cathedral sees Birminghamborn composer Ruth Byrchmore’s Here my prayer (a setting of Psalm 102) performed by Norwich Cathedral Choir and heard alongside Mendelssohn’s magnificent setting of Psalm 55. However, the big choral ‘shout’ this year salutes Mendelssohn in all his glory with a performance of his moving and uplifting oratorio Elijah featuring the  2015 May | 33

FINEARTS SMITH dancetheatre

from Lafarge Tarmac) are an integral part of the festival. This year the tradition continues with a spectacular finale in the form of 451, a largescale 360-degree surround performance combining sound installation with dramatic action and pyrotechnics inspired by Ray Bradbury’s visionary novel, Fahrenheit 451. The UK première of Austrian-based choreographer Willi Dorner’s fitting sees dancers and acrobats defying gravity to squeeze into all sorts of nooks and crannies in the city centre, making one view their surroundings with fresh open eyes, while C.a.p.e (Computer Automatic Personal Environment) allows us to sample virtual reality in the city’s streets. Stop Gap Dance’s Bill & Bobby integrates disabled and non-disabled dancers to pay playful tribute to Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers outside of The Forum while The Garden Party conjures up two jam-packed days of family fun in Chapelfield Gardens. Music has always played a large part in the festival and this year it comes from all over the globe. The Hot Sardines, a bright New York sensation, have taken America by storm and are now conquering Europe with their electrifying goodtime jazz. Icelandic composer

“Music has always played a large part in the festival and this year it comes from all over the globe” Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Festival Chorus, a quartet of top soloists including Sir John Tomlinson, conducted by David Parry, fresh from his triumphs in the pit conducting English National Opera’s new production by Mike Leigh of Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Pirates of Penzance at the London Coliseum. Other UK premières include the stage adaptation of Eimear McBride’s multi- award-winning novel A Girl is a Half-Formed Thing performed by celebrated Dublin-based company The Corn Exchange following five-star reviews for its Irish début. There’s also a programme of City of Literature events with wellknown writers such as Rose Tremain, Sarah Waters, Mark Cocker and Green Party MP Caroline Lucas taking part while Pussy Riot activist, journalist and authoress Masha Gessen will deliver the annual Harriet Martineau Lecture. Her subject: the freedom of speech. Erica Wagner (who studied at UEA and taught by Malcolm Bradbury and Rose Tremain) and Andrew O’Hagan (currently a creative writing fellow at King’s College, London) will debate the role of Amazon in the literary landscape and Caroline Criado-Perez will talk about campaigning for women’s rights. An English feminist, activist and journalist, CriadoPerez has been involved in campaigns for women to gain better representation in the British media and to be depicted on banknotes. Her efforts in part led to a decision by the Bank of England to review the selection process for future banknotes. Since this decision, the Old Lady of Threadneedle Street announced in July 2013 that the image of Jane Austen will appear on the £10 note by around 2017. And Norwich-based SMITH dancetheatre offers local audiences the first previews of their new show After The Fall: a little morality play inspired by the story of Lucifer’s banishment from Heaven with the work exploring angels, demons, outsiders and outcasts. And young singer-songwriters from the region have been working with Belgium’s Campo theatre company to create a new musical (working title: Wild Life) which will have scratch performances this year in anticipation of its début next year. Free outdoor performances (made possible thanks to sponsorship 34 | May 2015

Ólafur Arnalds, whose music has underpinned ITV’s Broadchurch, comes with his full band while charismatic South African legend, Abdullah Ibrahim, celebrates his 80th year with a solo piano set and Italian pianist, Stefano Bollani, can be enjoyed delving into his eclectic repertoire covering a wide range of music styles from classical to jazz and from pop to rock and even Brazilian. Celtic music is represented by the Scottish alt-folk of James Yorkston whose band features award-winning Indian sarangi player Suhail Yusuf Khan and the traditional Irish folk of Triad, an acoustic supergroup featuring Donal Lunny, Pádraig Rynne and Sylvain Barou. And San Franciscobased singer-songwriter, Meklit Hadero (simply known as ‘Meklit’), is guaranteed to deliver a soulful set combining the genre of jazz and folk while her music is spiced with East African influences directly connecting her to the roots of the country of her birth, Ethiopia. For one night only Norwich Theatre Royal will become the county’s largest cinema to show The Measure of all Things a new documentary from Oscar-nominated filmmaker Sam Green, who will also provide the commentary to the film loosely inspired by the Guinness Book of Records. The film weaves together portraits of record-holding people, places and things, accompanied by live music from New York’s yMusic. On the visual arts side a selection of work by Jeff Koons can be viewed at Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery. Renowned as one of the most important and controversial artists of our time the exhibition (running to 8th September) is the first time Koons’ work has been seen in East Anglia and is also the biggest exhibition of his work in the UK for a decade. After coming across an old set of 8mm film (64 reels, in fact) rummaging around an East German flea market, Polish artist Janek Turkowski was immediately attracted by the immaculatelypackaged reels. He pondered on eventually reusing this stock in some form of artistic tinkering. His resolve eventually developed in an interesting artistic-documentary hybrid using both analogue and digital projection accompanied by his real-time narrating skills.

Ann Mueller


Richard DeDomenici Hot Sardines

During the early development of the work (receiving several screenings at Norwich Puppet Theatre) he grew less interested in bringing new artistic meaning to the material but gradually became more fascinated by the familiar and yet impalpable aesthetics and narrative fragments of the original owner’s life. He shares her story and offers a sensitive portrait of her life under communist rule and talks about how he edited her home movies in an intimate and profound film. Margarete’s celluloid life is filled with idiosyncratic moments one comes to expect from 8mm amateur footage: happy and enjoyable bus trips to holiday destinations, birthday parties, fragments of her everyday life and so forth. However, this nostalgic imagery is juxtaposed by Turkowski’s own search for artistic and personal meaning. As we playfully try to reconstruct the historical, social and geographical coordinates of Margarete’s filmic existence, Turkowski’s own digital life takes over.

Abdullah Ibrahim

[Live] Art Club at Norwich Arts Centre is home to some of the most experimental and avant-garde elements of the festival. It kicks off with Kim Noble’s moving, comic and thought-provoking You’re Not Alone, one of the talking-points at last year’s Edinburgh Festival. Prankster Richard DeDomenici will reshoot no-budget versions of scenes from film and TV in their original locations for a special Norfolk version of his Redux Project, which has taken him to Berlin, Bangkok and Sydney as well as London and Glasgow and now, Norwich! There’s also space for home-grown performers, too, with Odd Comic premièring My Champion Heartache, their look at people and their pets, before it heads to London for a week-long run. Radio 4 poet and UEA graduate Luke Wright and experimental jazz-band Polar Bear stop off at the nation’s Best Small Venue as they tour the UK and there’s a special one-off ‘live n’ loud’ show from The Neutrinos, taking a break from their hit show, KlangHaus. You want more info! You can have more by checking out the festival on-line (booking too) at ❏

David Sinclair

Box office (situated at Norwich Theatre Royal) 01603 766 400. Norfolk & Norwich Festival is funded and supported by Arts Council England and Norwich City Council with support from the festival’s principal sponsors Abellio Greater Anglia, Adnams, Lafarge Tarmac and Wex Photographic plus generous support of other corporate partners, trusts and individuals.

2015 May | 35


A New Sherlock Holmes Tale A brand new story from Stephen Browning

Sherlock Holmes and his creator, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle have, as we highlighted in our March issue, never been more popular. The Christmas Special and fourth series of BBC’s ‘Sherlock’ are eagerly awaited, the Americans have their own quirky series called ‘Elementary’, and Sir Ian McKellen’s film, ‘Mr Holmes’, depicting the great consulting detective’s last case at the age of 93, is due for release in Summer 2015. Meanwhile, as one of the many who find the waiting too long, Stephen Browning has written a brand new story…



y diary tells me it was in ’02 that Holmes and I were sitting in companionable silence in our sitting room at 221b Baker Street. It was an unseasonably cold February evening and every now and again the windows would rattle in protest at the raging wind and snow that battered against them. Despite the roaring fire and the inner contentment that derived from our lately having consumed Mrs Hudson’s excellent dinner of roast beef, Colman’s mustard and all the trimmings, my old Afghanistan war wound was playing up dreadfully. Holmes had been very busy of late. Ever since his return from the ‘dead’ nine years previously, his fame had grown until now it extended from London to Lhasa and from Basingstoke to Burma. We had recently successfully concluded ‘The Adventure of the Naval Treaty’ and ‘The Adventure of the Speckled Band’ although Holmes had one of his rare failures in failing to find the culprit in the complex case involving the conspiracy to replace the Sultan of Amazonia with his second cousin. He had not now had a case for a week or so, however, and he sat moodily conducting some malodorous chemical experiment which apparently involved several items of Mrs Hudson’s best silver cutlery which, with an occasional ‘Ah!’

36 | May 2015

and ‘Oh!’, Holmes had managed to turn into various colours of the rainbow. I knew better than to say anything. The Lancet had fallen from my hands as I had dropped into a light slumber when, with a loud rat-tat-tat, our sitting room door abruptly opened and Mrs Hudson announced, ‘A visitor for you, Mr Holmes, Dr Watson – the Lady Cressingham.’ The lady in question – tall, stately, beautiful in what I would estimate to be about her 35th year, and dressed in a plain dress of dark blue silk– took an unsteady step forward. ‘Excuse me gentlemen – Mr Holmes?’ she said, looking from one of us to the other, ‘please help me – I am in the most terrible trouble!’ ‘I am Sherlock Holmes and this is my trusted colleague and friend, Dr Watson,’ said Holmes, stepping forward and taking her hand. ‘Pray, Lady Cressingham, do take a seat. I can see that you have come a long way as you have travelled on the 4 o’clock train from Guildford which was delayed for half an hour at Clapham Junction and that you did not care for a man who was sitting with you in your First Class carriage. I am sorry you found the railway company’s attempt at a chicken basket completely inedible. That you had difficulty finding a cab at the station on this frightful night must have made your journey doubly fraught! Perhaps Mrs Hudson

would be so good as to make us all some tea and you can tell me in your own good time how I may be of assistance to the wife of the Member of Parliament for Surrey South and, many believe, our next Foreign Secretary.’ Lady Cressingham did as she was bid and, as I often observed in similar occasions, seemed comforted and alarmed in equal degree by my brilliant friend’s observations. ‘But Mr Holmes!’ she said in an amazed voice, ‘I had heard of you and your brilliance but I think you must be the very devil himself to know all these things about my journey. How on earth…?’ ‘Elementary, my dear Lady! It is my job to observe what others merely see and to know things others do not. Now, let us begin at the beginning. It is about your diamonds, is it not? Pray begin at the beginning!’

‘But nobody knows about the diamonds – except obviously you, Mr Holmes! No matter, I will start at the beginning of my wretched tale. It is briefly told.’ Lady Cressingham took a deep breath, then began. ‘As you rightly say, Mr Holmes, I am fortunate to be married to a wonderful man who I just know will one day give great service to his country. If he knew how foolish I have been, it would

feature by:

Steve Browning Writer @returningperson

destroy him.’ Lady Cressingham took out a lace handkerchief and dabbed her eyes. ‘I am sorry, I will continue. As you may know, as you seem to know everything, Mr Holmes, I have been married for eight years now – and so very happy. To cut to the chase, last June I received a letter, unsigned, to say that some indiscreet letters that I had written as a young girl of 18 to a man I thought I loved, had been ‘intercepted’ but were available to me at a certain price. I was to watch the personal columns of the Times newspaper for further details…’ ‘And you presumably did?’ asked Holmes. ‘What did they communicate?’ ‘The next Tuesday there was a single sentence: ‘The Cressingham Diamonds’. ‘Surely not,’ I spluttered. ‘No, they are famous, a national treasure - almost beyond value and surely not worth swapping for a few lover’s letters…’ ‘The letters, Dr Watson, Mr Holmes, were more than a little indiscreet. Although saying nothing I am ashamed of, I am convinced that their publication

FINEARTS would undoubtedly besmirch myself and quite possibly ruin my husband’s career.’ ‘So, this blackmailer suggested, no doubt in further anonymous correspondence, that you should give him the diamonds – including your famous sapphire and diamond necklace - and he would make paste copies which you could wear on important occasions. No suspicion would be raised provided that you allowed no-one to closely inspect them. In return, he would give back the letters. Am I correct?’ asked Holmes. ‘Absolutely correct in every detail, Mr Holmes. But how...?’ ‘It is what any malicious but not terribly bright criminal would do. Furthermore, he has not given you the letters back, has he? Oh, dear Lady Cressingham you have been very foolish. If only you had come to me in the beginning!’ Lady Cressingham let out an agonised sob. ‘Oh, Mr Holmes, you are quite right, the situation is hopeless as far as I can see. But can you help me?’ Holmes reached for his pipe and began filling it with tobacco. ‘Oh yes, My Lady. I shall retrieve both your jewels and letters. It can only be one man. I shall communicate with him.’ A ray of hope crossed Lady Cressingham’s face. ‘But how, Mr Holmes?’ ‘Forcibly, my dear lady. Forcibly. Pray call back at this time in exactly two days. Good-day!’ And with that curt dismissal, he turned his back on both of us and lit the pipe, leaving me to usher the wife of a peer of the realm out of the front door.

The body was beautifully dressed. He was not dead, but had passed out following Holmes’ expertly directed punch. He had been an expert amateur boxer in his youth and still retained a profound knowledge of the noble art. We were in a notorious house of ill-repute in Cleveland Street, where illegal deals were made and pretty much anything you wanted on this earth could be obtained for a price. Toffs from all around the world, and a few members of

our highest classes also, were known to frequent this building, bland and even a little tatty from the outside, but, inside, a riot of gilded mirrors, chubby golden cherubs, ruby-red carpets and fawning footmen. How had we got here? Well, the night after Lady Cressingham left, Holmes had said we were to have a rare night out. ‘Where?’ I was very pleased that Holmes seemed to propose a night of frivolity and fun. I presumed the next day would be time enough to solve the matter of the Cressingham Diamonds, although I could not work out how. He had sent no telegrams or letters. ‘Never you mind, Watson. Just put on this fancy dress’. I did what he said, and found myself looking like a stocky, bewigged servant with a uniform of blue and red with gold buttons. ‘Hah! My dear Watson, you could almost be my servant!’ ‘What do you mean, ‘ALMOST…’ Holmes, I muttered, miffed beyond measure at my ludicrous attire. Holmes didn’t acknowledge my remark but, with a theatrical ‘Watch!’ rushed into the adjoining bedroom, to emerge a few minutes later totally and miraculously transformed. He was wearing the clothes of a French aristocrat – most beautifully tailored - and he was bewigged and powdered, with a black beauty spot artfully applied to his lower left cheek. There was a tentative knock on our door before Mrs Hudson entered bearing sandwiches, something she was want to do mid-evening . Putting the tray down she caught up her skirts and laughed out loud. ‘Oh, Dr Watson, you look so funny dressed like that’. She turned around to face Holmes. ‘Ah! I see you have a guest!’ ‘Enchantez, Madame’, said Holmes bowing with such…such French effrontery that I could hardly restrain myself. ‘I am not too good with your language, but I am enchantez’d to meet such a beautiful lady’. He kissed the tips of his fingers and then, tenderly taking our landlady’s quivering left hand in his own, repeated the kiss on her. ‘I am the Comte de Patis D’or.

I have come to see the famous Monsieur Holmes, but, alas, he is, as you say absentie…’ With that, the good Mrs Hudson shimmied out of the room, no doubt much enchantez’d judging by the rosy state of her face. She obviously had no idea whatsoever that she had been talking to her famous lodger. ‘Really, Holmes, really!’ I spluttered. ‘That was unworthy of you. Our own dear Mrs Hudson, indeed, subject to your wiles! I am appalled, Holmes!’ ‘Ah! As you have often remarked before, my dear fellow! But she is a happy lady, as she no doubt deserves to be. She is happy to have met the Compe de…whatever his name was. And I am sure that you will never tell her different. She is probably at this very moment about to compose a letter to her dear sister in Hove about the encounter.’ ‘Holmes, you are insufferable!’ Holmes picked up a silvertopped cane. ‘Now, my dear Jacquard – for such is your name and you have been my faithful retainer for many years – we must go out on the Town. I hear the sound of a carriage stopping outside our door. Come! The Game is Afoot!’

Holmes turned round at the door. ‘And, Watson, bring your medical bag and army revolver.’ ‘Where are we going?’ I asked, my dream of a hapless, innocent night of entertainment rapidly biting the dust. ‘To a particularly loathsome address in Cleveland Street, my dear Wat…I mean Jacquard.’ ‘Very well, Holmes…’

‘Help me get him on the bed, Jacquard – best to keep in character, my dear chap –

and affix his right wrist to the bedpost. Holmes produced a pair of handcuffs .There… good! Take off his jacket and shirt. Excellent! Now throw his clothes around the room.’ I did as I was bid, noticing for the first time the roaring fire in the exquisite marble surround which gave off enough light for me to marvel at the expensive trappings of the room. Our friend on the bed obviously lived here and Holmes knew as much. ‘You have your medical bag?’ ‘Of course!’ ‘Then prepare a syringe of Panthium Silvate. Good!’ Some say Holmes was a cold reasoning machine. I saw differently, then, as his guard dropped and I espied terrible fatigue in the way his eyes flashed pain and his whole face seemed to age twenty years. ‘I have a terrible thing to ask of you, my dear chap…’ I had an intuitive inking – sometimes they come upon us, don’t they? – of what he was about to say. I was sweating so much I wiped my brow, sending my powdered wig to the floor. ‘No, Holmes, I won’t! I am a doctor and preserve life…’ ‘Oh don’t worry, dear chap, I am not asking you to kill him. I want only an injection to knock this reptile of a man out for a good while so we can do what we have to do. I merely wish to check that you are willing to assist me on one of our most dangerous missions. This could mean a long jail term for both of us if it goes wrong.’ I admit I panicked. ‘This man, Holmes is about as high in the social order as it is possible to be. If we are caught…’ I suddenly felt ashamed of my cowardice. More to the point, I had never let my friend down and was not about to start now. ‘We are in this together, Holmes,’ I said. ‘I don’t know why you ask this of me, but, if it must be, then we will face life imprisonment in the Tower of London together!’ Holmes took the syringe from me and checked it. I noticed that those fine long fingers that occasionally produced such sublime notes on his Stradivarius were shaking slightly. He handed it back.  2015 May | 37


‘Just below the right toenail, Watson. Very, very carefully… It will be undetectable in an hour. It will never occur to those imbeciles from Scotland Yard that he has been drugged.’ I was all a-tremble as I administered the drug. Afterwards I carefully put all the instruments back in my medical bag. The Comte de Patis D’or’s face appeared happy, even ebullient. The figure on the bed lay on his back, eyes closed, breathing heavily. ‘Right’ said Holmes, ‘smash everything!’ ‘Why, what are we looking for?’ ‘Diamonds’, Holmes replied, ‘Diamonds and letters.’ Ten minutes later the room looked a splintered mess. I had needed to use my revolver on some obstinate locks of what I suspected were priceless French bureaux. Holmes looked at me. ‘You will never be able to publish this in your fantastical tales, but we know it, don’t we? And I would like to say something, my dear chap, because I never say it… I am a cold man by nature… now is the time, maybe, now may be the only time…’ I looked at this fine, utterly brilliant though flawed man. His eyes were blue – bright as if they had the sun behind them. 38 | May 2015

I am not ashamed to say that I was desperate for what I knew would come next. ‘Watson, I…I want you to know…although I find it very hard to admit…I know I never give you enough credit... I want to say to you that…’ ‘Yes…Yes...’ There was a terrific thudding on the door. Our room smashing, to say nothing of my shooting up the furniture, had obviously not gone unheeded. Then the door burst open. Put bluntly, we legged it. Charging straight at the bulky figures entering the room, Holmes and I fought and struggled out into the dirty air of Tottenham Court Road, and thence back to 221b Baker Street.

Next morning Holmes was in fabulous fashion. I, for one, was pleased to be back in the safety of our sitting room at 221B.

Mycroft Holmes was preceded by the Prime Minister, who had both come in for one of their regular chats with the great man who was my housemate. All enjoyed the very best of Mrs Hudson’s kedgeree and scrambled eggs. After coffee, we were joined by Inspector Lestrade of New Scotland Yard.

‘Terrible business, this’, said Holmes, languidly perusing the columns of The Times. ‘And a Peer of the Realm, too! Caught in a house of ill repute like that! Apparently he practically lived there! Room smashed to smithereens! Dear me!’ The Prime Minister eyed Mycroft. ‘Nothing to do with you, Mycroft?’ ‘Nothing – I was in the Diogenes Club at the time of what the papers like to call

‘The Smashing Incident’. ‘Interesting thing’, said Lestrade, ‘is that we cannot work out what the thieves were after. We are not as daft as the public think. Panthium Silvate was used, you know. NOT totally undectectable. There were traces. If the dose had been delivered only seconds earlier, it would have cleared the system. No, there was some hesitation in administering the dose. We may be looking for either a reluctant or nervous criminal. But we will get the thieves!’ ‘Any other clues, Inspector?’ asked Holmes. ‘Yes – there was a wig left on the floor. Also we have an eye witness of the escape. A French aristocrat, apparently. And his servant who lost his wig - a chap about 5ft 9 inches, stocky, very English looking, with a fine moustache… No mistake, he will be apprehended. A very long jail sentence awaits this scoundrel!’ ‘Good heavens, Watson’, said Holmes clapping his hands together and then helping himself to another cup of coffee. ‘That sounds like you! Put your hands up for the cuffs, my dear chap. You have been rumbled!’ It wasn’t funny, though they all laughed. I thought for an instant that Mycroft Holmes looked at me with an amused tolerance that was just a half second too long. But that was no doubt my conscience. Holmes seemed to find the situation extremely ‘amusant’ as the Comte de Patis D’or might have said. I felt sick.

A week later we received a charming letter and invitation from a certain very happy lady. ‘I hear, my dear chap,’ said Holmes, ‘that an early spring holiday on the Cressingham Estate promises excellent Trout fishing. What do you say?’ ❏ Please visit Stephen Browning’s Facebook page and ‘Like’ to receive all ongoing book, magazine and publishing news. stevebrowningbooks

2015 May | 39


Jenny Eclair

Holt Festival

Two new shows and a change of date have been announced for this year’s Holt Festival with more comedy, politics and a whole lotta soul!


enny Éclair, has been a top stand-up comic for many years and was the first woman to win the coveted Perrier Award at the Edinburgh Fringe. Recently she took part in the return of TV’s Grumpy Old Women with their live show 50 Shades of Beige, toured her own show Eclairious and published a third novel Life, Death and Vanilla Slices to rave reviews. In Holt’s Theatre in the Woods she will be in conversation for the very first time in public with Margaret Hodge, MBE who first became MP for Barking in 1994. Recently she has served as the first elected and first female Chair of the Public Accounts Committee, tasked with overseeing government expenditures to ensure they are effective and honest. In this role she has relentlessly subjected the great and the good (and sometimes not so good) to verbal grillings in pursuit of value for the taxpayer. For this first public

40 | May 2015

coming together, these two formidable forces will interview each other about people, politics, power, petticoats, performance and passion. They are likely to touch on growing old gracefully (or disgracefully), the challenge of carving out careers in fields where, and at a time when women were rare and men often tried to wield inappropriate power. For the UK’s very own resident Godfather of Soul his appearance in Holt will be a homecoming of sorts. Geno Washington first came to the UK with the US Air Force in the sixties when he was stationed right here in Norfolk. Upon leaving the military he settled in England, becoming one of the biggest draws on the live circuit and hogging the album charts – his first live album was in the charts for an unprecedented 48 weeks. Pink Floyd, Georgie Fame, The Small Faces, and Jimi Hendrix were his support acts. Since then his powerhouse, soulful

vocals and foot stompin’ band have established him as one of the world’s great entertainers. He was the subject of Dexy’s Midnight Runners’ hit Geno and his magnetic stage presence and his love of performance (and of life!) makes him an inspiration and a joy to behold. There’s a change of date for Norfolk born Henry Blofeld and his great friend and foil Peter Baxter. Originally set to appear at The Auden Theatre on Monday 20 July, Festival Artistic Director Charles Pugh has moved them to The Theatre in the Woods for Saturday 25. ‘I felt that they warranted a bigger venue, and the opportunity to juxtapose the women’s conversation between Jenny Éclair and Margaret Hodge on the day before.’ he explained. Rogues on the Road is a brand new show crammed full of even more wonderful (and occasionally outrageous) reminiscences and anecdotes from Blowers and Backers. The two Test Match Special stalwarts take in much more than cricket in these tales of two extensive careers spent broadcasting around the globe. Holt Festival has already announced other names such as Steelye Span, Jeffrey Archer, Steve Harley & Cockney Rebel, Michael Buerke and Stella Rimington and there’s lots more to come when the full line up is revealed in mid May. ❏ Full details and ticket bookings at www.holtfestival. org or call the box office on 01603 598699 Geno Washington

Holt Festival 2015, new shows just announced The full line up will be revealed on 18 May at Friday 24th July 4pm Jenny Eclair and The Rt. Hon Margaret Hodge MBE £20 Two highly opinionated women and formidable forces from very different backgrounds discuss their lives, ambitions and respective careers in politics and comedy. Holt Festival at Theatre in the Woods, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA Friday 24th July 9pm Geno Washington & The Yo Yo’s £18 The UK’s very own Godfather of Soul shows no sign of slowing down despite entering his 70’s. His legendarily energetic foot stomping soul and r n’b style will rock Holt like it’s never been rocked before! Holt Festival at Theatre in the Woods, Cromer Road, Holt NR25 6EA Saturday 25th July 4pm Blofeld and Baxter Rogues on the Road £20 Test Match Special icons with over 80 years in the BBC commentary box between them, Henry Blofeld and Peter Baxter are fresh from touring Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore, Malaysia and even more far-flung corners of the world, with many tales to tell about the fun, the games and outlandish characters they’ve met on their travels. Theatre in the Woods (originally scheduled for 20 July) Box office 01603 598699

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New Season at Norwich Theatre Royal Glenn Carter as Jesus in Jesus Christ Superstar

Timeless classics to cuttingedge contemporary shows


rom one of the biggest new musicals to grace the West End stage to one of musical theatre’s most legendary shows – Norwich Theatre Royal is set for an exciting autumn season of timeless classics, cutting edge drama, side-splitting comedy, dramatic dance and music galore. With its spring and summer schedule now getting underway, the theatre is planning ahead to next Christmas and top of the list of new shows available at the box office is the enduring rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar, on stage from October 19-24. Tim Rice and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s ground-breaking story-telling of the last seven days in the life of Jesus is as compelling today as it was when first performed over 40 years ago and boasts some of musical theatre’s most memorable songs. Leading performer Glenn Carter returns as Jesus having performed the role on Broadway and in the West End, while Rachel Adedeji, from X-Factor’s sixth season, is cast as Mary Magdalene. 

2015 May | 43


Tristan Sturrock as Maxim De Winter in Rebecca

And bringing audiences bang up to-date from October 13-17 will be one of 2014’s best new musicals Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. It has already been seen by over half a million people in the West End with Robert Lindsay in the lead role, and is now going out on tour with new star casting to be announced. Based on the classic comedy film starring Sir Michael Caine and Steve Martin, the show transports audiences to the French Riviera where two seasoned swindlers attempt to hoodwink a millionaire heiress. Song and dance extravaganza Puttin’ On The Ritz returns to Norwich from July 21-25 with TV’s Strictly Come Dancing stars Kristina Rihanoff and Robin Windsor, plus a cast of singers and dancers, taking audiences on a glitzy musical journey of the Golden Age of Hollywood with memorable songs from George Gershwin, Irving Berlin and Cole Porter. Tom Conti returns to the Norwich stage in an edgy drama based on a W. Somerset Maugham story, Before The Party, which runs from September 14-19. It features social skirmishes and a shocking secret which threatens to unravel a family’s attempts to return to normality after the Second World War. Tom Conti, recently voted Most Popular Actor in the West End alongside Dame Judi Dench, wowed Norwich audiences in Rough Justice in 2013. Two more big-hitting dramas will also grace the Theatre Royal stage - The Shawshank Redemption arrives in town from October 26-31 and the timeless Rebecca runs from September 21-26. The Shawshank Redemption is widely considered one of the finest movies ever made, starring Morgan Freeman and Tim Robbins. Casting for this brand new stage production, inspired by the classic film, is yet to be announced but the story of the innocent Andy Dufresne, serving a double life sentence in the notorious maximum security Shawshank penitentiary, examines injustice, friendship and hope behind bars, and is sure to thrill. Rebecca, also an Alfred Hitchcock film favourite for many, is presented by the internationally-acclaimed Kneehigh Theatre which 44 | May 2015


brings this spellbinding new production of Daphne du Maurier’s Cornish masterpiece to the stage. Be prepared for an emotional rollercoaster from this study in jealousy. From jealousy to joy, theatregoers should be sure to bag a ticket for the 2015 Olivier Award-nominated smash hit comedy Handbagged by Moira Buffini which arrives in Norwich from November 10-14. This sparkling and witty production speculates on what the world’s two most powerful women – The Queen and Margaret Thatcher – really talked Michael about behind closed doors. McIntyre The comedy offering continues apace with newly announced appearances from Michael McIntyre (July 3-4), Jimmy Carr (September 13) and Stewart Lee (November 8). Also due to go on sale at the box office, although not yet in the brochure, are tickets for the warm-hearted queen of comedy Sarah Millican, coming to Norwich Theatre Royal on Monday, August 8, 2016.

FINEARTS Ministry of Science Live

“we are covering all theatrical tastes for an exciting and electric programme going into the second half of 2015” There is plenty for families too with Jacqueline Wilson’s Olivier Award-nominated Hetty Feather brought to life on stage from September 29-October 3, direct from a sold-out season in the West End. With an original musical score, circus skills and a huge heart, Hetty Feather is the perfect treat for everyone aged seven upwards. Younger audiences will also have a treat with Sing-A-Long-AFrozen, which proved so popular with audiences in February that it is due to return with three more performances on August 2. CBeebies star Tree Fu Tom zooms into town on September 20; Ministry of Science Live brings exciting science alive on September 28; and local youngsters take to the stage with 10 (Centre Stage Performing Arts School) on July 19, Norwich School Gala Night on July 2, Alice In Wonderland (presented by Michala Jane School of Dance) on October 4, and the Norfolk Schools Project on November 8. Norwich audiences love their ballet and there will be performances from Rambert (October 8-9) with three stunning dance pieces – The 3 Dancers, Terra Incognita and Frames – while Northern Ballet returns with its beautiful telling of Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker (November 24-28), a real treat in the run-up to the festive season.

Glyndebourne returns to Norwich with three diverse operas from November 17-21, when it stages Donizetti’s Don Pasquale, Mozart’s Die Entführung aus dem Serail and Handel’s Saul. Music and song will also be in full swing with performances from Classic Rock (June 30), Brit Floyd (November 15), RAF in Concert (December 6), and the legendary guitar musician and singersongwriter Robert Cray makes a welcome return on October 10. Judy Foster, of Norwich Theatre Royal, said: “Fans of the musicals will be excited to see such an iconic and enduring production as Jesus Christ Superstar featuring on our programme alongside the newest and best-rated West End hit Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. “We also have some first-rate drama on offer too with treasured stories such as Rebecca and The Shawshank Redemption, which will surely be a big hit with those who love both film and literature – and we are delighted the legendary Tom Conti, last here in Rough Justice, will be returning in Before The Party. “Add in some great music, comedy and dance treats, and family entertainment too and we are covering all theatrical tastes for an exciting and eclectic programme going into the second half of 2015.” ❏ Box office 01603 630000. For more info or to book online visit the website

britt floyd

raf in concert

2015 May | 45

Alistair Muir


Opera North’s Carousel Opera North’s hit production of the classic American musical Carousel returns to UK stages for a new tour following a sell-out run at the Théâtre du Châtelet in Paris.


n stage at Norwich Theatre Royal from May 28 to 30, Carousel is one of the greatest musical theatre works of the 20th century, and was composed by one of Broadway’s most successful, innovative and enduring partnerships, Richard Rodgers and Oscar Hammerstein II. Opera North brings exceptionally high musical and performance standards to this much-loved story with a fullscale orchestra and chorus, and a classically-trained cast, conducted by James Holmes who is considered today’s foremost expert interpreter of Rodgers’ scores. Rodgers and Hammerstein created a string of popular 46 | May 2015

Broadway musicals in the 1940s and 50s, initiating what is considered to be the golden age of musical theatre, with a stage and screen legacy which includes The Sound of Music, Oklahoma! and The King and I. Among the many accolades their shows (and film versions) garnered were 34 Tony Awards, 15 Academy Awards, the Pulitzer Prize and two Grammy Awards. Carousel was first performed in April 1945 at the Majestic Theatre in New York and when asked if he had ever been tempted to write an opera, Richard Rodgers replied that he had, and that Carousel was the closest he had come to doing so. His score is studded with some of the most powerful, uplifting and moving music ever

written for the stage, including ‘If I Loved You’, ‘June is Bustin’ Out All Over’ and, of course, ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone.’ Set in a tight-knit fishing community on the New England shoreline, Carousel revolves around the ill-fated affair between a charismatic but troubled carnival barker Billy Bigelow and a young mill-worker, Julie Jordan. When they fall in love, little do they realise that Billy’s rebellious ways will end in tragedy. Billy is given a chance to make good, but is it too little too late, or will a lucky star save him and those he loves? Carousel was voted the best musical of the 20th century by Time Magazine and Norwich audiences are in for a real treat with this fresh and vibrant production which received five-star reviews for its first performances in Leeds, Salford and at the Barbican, London, during its 2012 tour. Directed by Jo Davies, it brings the New England community to life with joyous choreography, dazzling lights and memorable songs, Liverpool-born baritone Keith Higham returns to the company to play Billy Bigelow having performed the role in matinee performances during the 2012 tour.

Gillene Butterfield returns as his romantic partner Julie Jordan. She is a member of Opera North’s Chorus and recently had a baby, so Carousel will be her first show back after maternity leave. Yvonne Howard is also returning as Nettie - she has a couple of the show’s biggest songs, including ‘You’ll Never Walk Alone’ and’ June is Bustin’ Out All Over’. ❏ More details about the production are available at

Listing Opera North Carousel runs from Thursday 28 to Saturday 30 May at 7.30pm, and Thursday and Saturday matinees at 2.30pm. Tickets £8-£45. Discounts for over 60s. Captioned performance Friday, May 29, at 7.30pm. Audio-described performance Saturday, May 30, at 2.30pm. Call 01603 630000 or to book online visit www.


The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime is a murder mystery novel like no other.


landmark book for the way it portrays the workings of the mind of a 15-year-old boy with a mathematical gift and behavourial problems, author Mark Haddon’s story has sold over ten million copies and is a set text for schoolchildren around the world. Turned into an award-winning play by the National Theatre, this highly-acclaimed production has wowed West End audiences and won seven Olivier Awards in 2013, including Best New Play. Now on its first-ever nationwide tour, taking in 31 cities, it comes to Norwich Theatre Royal from September 7 to 12. The play’s innovative set resembles a giant mathematical box which, together with a very

physical dramatisation, draws the audience into Christopher’s brain. It lights up to show Christopher’s movements and thought patterns, his love of numbers and the night sky, cleverly representing the way in which he views the world and the challenges he and his family face every day as they live with his autistic spectrum condition. His story opens with the death of his neighbour’s dog, an incident which Christopher decides to investigate. In trying to track down the dog’s killer, he unearths some dark family secrets and goes on a train and underground trip from his home in Swindon to find his mother in Willesden - a challenging journey for him which turns his world upside down. The touring cast will feature two

actors in the role of Christopher – Joshua Jenkins, 27, takes the role for five performances, while Chris Ashby, 26, will be the alternate Christopher for the other three. Both actors have young cousins with varying degrees of autism, so had some family experience of the condition, and all cast members carried out research into how autism affects those who have it and the families who cope with it. Christopher’s thoughts and reactions are brought to life on stage with a very physical portrayal and the demanding nature of the role is why two actors are cast to share performances. They are joined by Geraldine Alexander as Siobhan, Emmanuelle Cole (Punk Girl), Edward Grace (Mr Thompson), Gina Isaac (Judy), Stuart Laing (Ed), Roberta Kerr (Mrs Alexander) and Clare Perkins (Mrs Shears). Joshua feels audiences will be able to relate in some way to what Christopher goes through. “We have all felt scared and lonely at some time, so I think there are things that we all identify with in Christopher. That’s in us all. Everyone can relate to that. I think it makes people realise that Christopher is not that different – he just deals with things in his own unique different way.” Simon Stephens, who adapted Mark Haddon’s book for the stage, said: “Curious is a complicated

story about a family engaging with a life with difficulties. It is a play about family, about raising children, and Christopher is not defined by his condition but by his character. People recognise themselves in it. “There’s a great risk in staging this book because it’s the nation’s favourite book, but we are doing this because we love Christopher’s story.” ❏

Listing The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time runs from Monday 7-Saturday 12 September, 2015, at 7.30pm, and Wednesday and Saturday matinees at 2.30pm. Tickets £8-£26. Discounts for Friends, Corporate Club, Over-60s, Under-18s, Schools and Groups. Signed performance Friday September 11 at 7.30pm. Audio-described performance Saturday September 12 at 2.30pm. Captioned performance Wednesday September 9 at 2.30pm & 7.30pm. Call 01603 630000 or to book online visit www.

2015 May | 47

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feature by:

Tony Cooper Writer

the Horne Section

Norwich-based arts writer Tony Cooper previews Norwich Playhouse’s new season


he reputation that the Playhouse has for stand-up comedy is rated second to none and raising the curtain on the first laugh of the new season (running to September) is none other than Ruby Wax, on stage of the famed St George’s Street venue for two nights (Wed/Thurs/Fri June 3rd/4th/5th) in a show based upon her critically-acclaimed book, Sane New World. Following in the wake of Ruby comes Tim Fitzhigham (Fri June 12th) and Robin Ince (Sat June 13th) while Luisa Omielan turns up with her new show Am I Right Ladies (Wed July 1st), another signature ‘party with jokes’ following her début stand-up show - What Would Beyoncé Do?

And much later in the season comes Sean Hughes (Thurs Sept 17th), Henning Wehn (Thurs-Sat Sept 24th-26th) and Festival of the Spoken Nerd (Fri/Sat Oct 2nd/3rd) with Dave Gorman coming in last and having the last laugh early in 2016: Mon-Wed, Jan 18-20, nightly at 8pm. But before you get to all this stand-up there’s comedy to be had in the Tony Awardwinning musical Avenue Q, a potty-mouthed and politicallyincorrect affair and, therefore, not for the fainthearted or those easily offended. The show runs from Tuesday to Saturday May 26th-30th in a production by Threshold Theatre Company, the highly-talented and energetic sister company of the Norfolk & Norwich Operatic Society. However, the magic, humour

and sleight-of-hand tricks of Paul Daniels (Sat June 6th) should be up everybody’s ‘sleeve’ as Mr Daniels, ably assisted by Debbie McGee, pulls more than tricks out of the hat that will have you guessing how it’s all done. By magic, of course! More magic comes by way of forensic mind reader Colin Cloud (Sat Sept 5th) who mixes mindmagic and brain science with his love of Conan Doyle, resulting in him being described ‘as the closest thing in the universe to a real-life Sherlock Holmes’. At last year’s Edinburgh Festival Fringe, Cloud became a runaway success with all of his 23 performances which received multiple five-star reviews - sold out. And rolling into town making their Playhouse début is The Horne Section (Sat June 20th) headed by the musically-talented comedian Alex Horne in a show promising a potpourri of musical mash and mirth while

Adam Buxton (Wed/Thurs June 24th/25th) can be enjoyed in his latest edition of BUG (the 15th such show tailormade just for the Playhouse and the BFI) comprising an assortment of favourite videos from recent BFI shows served up with other treats hot from the hallowed Buxton laptop. 

Tim Fitzhigham

2015 May | 49


the amazing bubble man

Stacy Kent

aliens love underpants

The first family show of the season falls to Aliens Love Underpants (Sat/Sun June 13th/14th), a zany and hilarious tale based on the best-selling children’s book by Claire Freedman and Ben Cort. And following a sellout run at the Playhouse in 2012, the tea-guzzling tiger once more roars on the road in the delightful show The Tiger Who Came to Tea (Tues-Sun July 14th-19th) adapted and directed by David Wood and based on Judith Kerr’s award-winning book. 50 | May 2015

I’m forever blowing bubbles, pretty bubbles in the air! The world’s leading ‘bubbleologist’ Louis Pearl is also heading to Norwich to blow a few more while also making his Playhouse début in an amazing visual show simply called The Amazing Bubble Man (Sat/Sun Aug 1st/2nd). Whether it’s sculptural bubbles, illuminated bubbles, bubbles inside bubbles, fog-filled bubbles, giant bubbles, bubble tornados and trampolines or people inside bubbles, the Amazing Bubble Man’s fantastical

the ronnie scott’s all-stars quintet

spectacles are certain to reach out and capture the imagination of audiences of all ages. If comedy’s a major part of the Playhouse’s programming, jazz comes in a close second with three top-flight outfits heading to Norwich starting with Digby Fairweather’s Half Dozen (Fri Aug 7th), last seen at the Playhouse backing George Melly. Celebrating their 20th anniversary, they’ll dispense a jazz cocktail of traditional and Latin-inspired jazz as well as giving the audience a heavy dose of wellknown numbers from the Great American and British songbooks. And also returning to Norwich comes The Ronnie Scott’s All-Stars Quintet (Fri Sept 4th) under the direction of James Pearson, music director of Ronnie Scott’s iconic Soho jazz haunt. He’s the owner of a ferocious piano technique coupled with a sense of musicality rarely heard. Pearson has been described

as ‘one of the most exciting musicians to have emerged from the UK in the last 25 years’ and after working with him, the late great jazz legend, Sir John Dankworth, declared: ‘James Pearson is an exceptionally-gifted artist. His masterful playing makes him head and shoulders above the rest of his contemporaries. He shows signs of true greatness.’ Praise, indeed! Jazz diva Stacey Kent (Fri Sept 18th) needs no introduction to Playhouse audiences. They love her! Full stop! Her presence always commands a full house and this time round Ms Kent will treat her admiring and adoring fans to an evening of jazz standards, Bossa Nova rhythms and original material from the pens of saxophonist husband Jim Tomlinson and acclaimed Japanese-born British novelist, Kazuo Ishiguro. The Floyd Effect (Sat Aug 8th) promises a big treat to aficionados


“The playhouse is a valuable asset to the arts and community life of the city” of Pink Floyd as they’ll take one on a musical journey through The Dark Side of the Moon to The Wall and all the way to the latest (and possibly last) Floyd work, The Endless River. And coming direct from the West End, The Simon & Garfunkel Story (Sat Aug 22nd) will be told using projected images and original footage featuring award-winning actor Dean Elliott (who played Buddy Holly in Buddy The Musical) and a fully-supporting cast of performers telling the compelling story of one of the greatest music duos of all time in this half-century celebration. All the classic hits will be there ranging from Mrs Robinson to Bridge Over Troubled Waters not forgetting, of course, Cecilia, whose name refers to the patron saint of music of the Roman Catholic tradition. Another musical close to people’s hearts, Grease, plays from Tuesday to Saturday, August 25th -29th, in a production by

Mixed Voice, a Norfolk-based company formed in 2007 with the sole objective of bringing together some of finest stage performers and musicians to be found in East Anglia. Previous successes at the Playhouse include Rent and Godspell. Opera gets in on the act too with Mahogany Opera’s intriguing production of Brundibár, a children’s opera by JewishCzech composer Hans Krása with a libretto by Adolf Hoffmeister. Full of catchy folk tunes, lively marches, stirring polkas and swirling waltzes, the opera was originally performed by the children of Theresienstadt concentration camp in occupied Czechoslovakia. The name comes from a Czech colloquialism for a bumblebee. Directed by Frederic Wake Walker, the show receives two performances on Sunday June 28th (2pm/5pm) and the scenario portrays two poor siblings’ fight

against adversity in the shape of evil organ-grinder, Brundibár. An ‘offbeat’ production of Gilbert & Sullivan’s The Mikado (Fri/Sat July 10th/11th) comes with Live Wire Opera’s eccentric take on one of the most popular works in the G&S canon. By setting the opera in Japan it allowed William Schwenck Gilbert to satirise and soften the impact of his pointed satire of British institutions more freely by disguising them as Japanese while Sir Arthur Sullivan’s colourful score propelled the work to one of the most frequently performed of all the famous Savoy Operas. Propeller’s all-male cast, under the direction of Edward Hall, will bring the text of Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice Pocket Size to life in their condensed version of The Bard’s uncompromising tale of greed, revenge and love where a pound of flesh acts as a guarantee for a loan demanded by the cunning

and unscrupulous money-lender, Shylock. The show runs for two nights: Wed/Thurs Sept 30th/Oct 1st. Caroline Richardson, director of Norwich Playhouse, said: ‘With our accessible, intimate auditorium and iconic riverside bar, the Playhouse attracts a rich diversity of people showing that the theatre’s a valuable asset to the arts and community life of the city.’ ❏ A taste of the new season! But, of course, there’s more! There always is at the Playhouse. To obtain the full info about the season check out the Playhouse’s website at www.norwichplayhouse. or pick up a programme brochure from the Playhouse box office situated at Norwich Theatre Royal (01603 598598) or from the Playhouse itself as well as sites in and around the city and county. 2015 May | 51


The Play’s the Thing The pros and pitfalls of playwriting are examined by James Dimelow

Act One Laying The Foundations Many people enjoy watching a good play at the theatre, but not everyone considers the drama’s journey from the page to stage. In this article I hope to share some of my knowledge and experience of the playwriting process with you. Ever since I was young I always enjoyed reading and writing – English was a particular highlight at school. I vividly remember creating a basic comedy script on a family typewriter when I was 8, but it was not until my mid-teens that I started to take my desire to write more seriously. Having seemingly had a constant awareness of the stage and screen, it was only really a matter of time that I would be attracted to them both as an interest. Where to start? That’s a good question, and I am conscious that everyone’s answer will be different. With me, I found it useful to capitalise on my interest in reading. This then led to me consuming as many stories as 52 | May 2015

I could. Thanks to the Internet and numerous book shops in the city, I soon got introduced to a wealth of playwrights ranging from William Shakespeare to Eugène Ionesco and Alan Ayckbourn – and back again! Through reading as many plays as I was able to I soon became acutely aware of the ‘craft’ of the text. It is these theatrical ‘mechanics’ I hope to demystify. Breaking Through The starting point for every play is the plot. You only need to open a newspaper, read a magazine or watch television, to see the wide variety of stories that there are on offer. I usually begin with a small kernel of an idea, which I then brainstorm, followed by the necessary research on the relevant subject matter(s). Once this research is in progress I am then able to make sense of the characters, and the storyline they have found themselves in. One exercise I have repeatedly found beneficial is to write some

sample dialogue, based on your gut instinct and initial creative thoughts. This flash fiction exercise allows the characters, plot and dialogue a chance to breathe, free of any constraints and expectations. You will be pleasantly surprised at how much you will gain from this when you start to write the play in earnest. It is important to note that most stories follow ‘The Three

Act Structure’. In simple terms this means that every plot has a Beginning, Middle and an End. A businessman getting beaten up in a deserted Tube station, and a wife accusing her husband of having an affair, are just a couple of memorable examples of my own plays’ beginnings. There are endless possibilities your characters will be able to explore following an attentiongrabbing opening.

Maria Cooke


From my own experience, many industry professionals have said that if they are not hooked within the first ten minutes of a script, your effort will be discarded and placed on the slush pile. It is always bearing in mind ‘The 10 Minute Rule’ when opening your play. You could always begin the plot at a genuinely thrilling moment, only to flashback later on to see how we arrived at that point.

common for a story to end with your central character gaining a new sense of self following receipt of this knowledge.

Act Two New Beginnings It is well worth remembering that many theatres, on both a national and local level, are eager to read fresh dramas. There is a constant hunger for new literary voices, and you

“There is a constant hunger for new literary voices, and you never know when the next opportunity will arise” Further Complications The middle section of the play gives the characters an opportunity to really come alive. Much like life itself, there are many obstacles to overcome, and stories are not any different. The ensuing plot complications provide your protagonist a chance to learn about themselves, whilst at the same time, meet other characters who may, or may not, be able to help them on their quest. Finally, The Third Act features the resolution of the story. The climax brings the main tensions of the plot to an intense point, which then results in the key dramatic point being answered. It is quite

never know when the next exciting opportunity will arise. Online you will soon discover which producing houses are likely to favour your own story. Some theatres even hold annual competitions in order to seek out the latest theatrical talent – don’t be afraid to take this leap of faith as your play could easily be what someone else has been waiting for. I would also recommend not trying to follow the latest trend, or attempting to second guess what you will think will be popular soon. It is better to be true to yourself, and to stick with the original spirit of your own writing. You are more likely to achieve

James Dimelow

Biography James Dimelow lives and works in Norwich. In addition to writing 6 plays, James has written an online animation on the history of The Assembly House for Norwich HEART. At present James is writing his 7th play, and is busy making preparations for his 8th. He has also been a member of Norwich Writers’ Circle for over a decade. In his spare time James enjoys listening to music, going to cinema, and visiting museums & art galleries. To discover more please visit

success by being unique and distinctive within what is already a highly competitive marketplace. Many writers, including myself, have also found it extremely helpful to have a website. An online presence is, not only an easily accessible marketing tool, but it also provides a useful platform for countless others to discover more about you and your work. Courtesy of the Internet I have come in contact with several people I would previously not had the opportunity to do so. Different Stages Norwich regularly plays host to a wide range of performances in numerous venues, ranging from the UEA’s Drama Studio to the Playhouse. Continue to seek out the shows which appeal to you most. By doing this, you will enjoy an entertaining evening out, plus your understanding of the workings of action, character and dialogue will be naturally enhanced. The Other Side Our fine city is home to a variety of writing groups. I have personally found that being a member of

a local literary group interesting and invaluable. Through Norwich Writers’ Circle I have not only met many people who share the same interest as myself, this warm and welcoming group also hosts a yearly programme that includes regular visits from writers of the page, stage and screen. The visiting authors share their knowledge and experience of the industry, and discuss how they have achieved their success within it. Many of the successful scribes go on to set popular in-house competitions, before providing constructive and realistic feedback on your own writing skills. Norwich Writers’ Circle meets in The Assembly House at 7.30pm, every first and third Tuesday, from September to the Summer.

Act Three A Big Finish I hope you have found this feature both informative and inspiring. There is, however, one very crucial thing I have not mentioned yet. When writing, please make sure that above all things, you always remember to enjoy yourself – have fun and good luck! ❏ 2015 May | 53


What’s on at Maddermarket Coming up this month at Maddermarket Theatre

anthony and cleopatra

put in locations and situations where they question each other’s loyalty and love. The play’s ending is an example of how passion mingled with power, treachery, and misunderstanding, can lead to a tragic end. Tickets £8.00 - £12.00

Norwich International Jazz Workshop and Creative Music Festival

Share your work with the group, get written feedback from the tutor and - most importantly enjoy a free coffee and cake! £80.00 for eight weeks

Anthony and Cleopatra Write Club Writing Workshop Saturday 11th April to Saturday 6th June 11:30am - 1:30pm Saturdays for 8 weeks Struggling to find time to write or not sure how to get started? Looking to join a friendly community of fellow writers? This eight-week course, led by an award-winning author, will give you the time, space, and support you need. Get stuck into an existing project or work from prompts and exercises. 54 | May 2015

Thursday 23rd April to Saturday 2nd May Norwich Players One of Shakespeare’s most powerful plays, the story centres on one of Rome’s three leaders, Mark Antony, and the Queen of Egypt, Cleopatra. These two lovers are first featured at Cleopatra’s palace, but as the play continues Antony’s political and social duties take the action to Rome, Syria, Actium, Parthia (modern day Iraq), Athens, and to various military camps in Egypt. In short, the lovers are

The Sorcerer Wednesday 6th May to Saturday 9th May East Norfolk Operatic Society The Sorcerer is an uproariously funny operetta which turns class and social structure on its head. A young man, Alexis, is obsessed with idea of love levelling all ranks and social distinctions. To promote his beliefs, he invites the proprietor of J. W. Wells & Co., Family Sorcerers, to brew a love potion and chaos ensues as everyone in the village drinks the potion and falls in love with the first person they see when they awake. The results are some hilarious pairings of comically mismatched couples. In the end, Wells must decide whether to sacrifice his life to break the spell. Tickets £12.00

Sunday 10th May Jazz workshops The Maddermarket Theatre with Global Music Foundation presents a dazzling series of interactive workshops and performances, featuring The Perico Sambeat Quartet and Guillermo Rozenthuler. The spectacular setting, the outstanding performers and the varied schedule of activity all add up to an unforgettable experience for everyone who takes part in this unique one day event. Inside a Jazz-Great Ensemble with the Perico Sambeat Quartet 4.00pm5.00pm Main Auditorium This workshop opens the door for an intimate look at the inner workings of a top flight international jazz quartet. Perico’s group will perform, instruct and comment on the many interactions needed to play well in a saxophone led quartet. A unique opportunity see how the group works together, under the leadership of Perico, rehearsing and discussing the

FINEARTS material that will be performed in the evening’s concert at 8.00pm. Followed by a Q&A session with the audience – not to be missed! This workshop is free entry. Please book your ticket. The Big Singing Circle with Guillermo Rozenthuler 5.30pm-6.00pm - Workshop 1 6.15pm-6.45pm - Workshop 2 Both workshops take place in the Emmerson Studio Theatre Interactive vocal workshop open to all people who wish to participate or listen. The Big Singing Circle is a singing gathering open to all. An invitation to experience the boundless joy of singing, to share and nourish oneself and the group through sound. Guillermo believes in the link between singing and health, both the healing and harmonising effect of group singing for the individual and also its transformative power for the group, the ways in which singing brings people together, erases hierarchies and foments trust. Group singing can be a wonderful way to enhance well-being and unwind from the pressures of the day… Circlesongs are spontaneously composed choral music layering melodies, harmonies and rhythms. Circlesinging is a form of group singing that connects with ancestral ways of music-making. It brings people together in sound regardless of their abilities, inviting them to listen deeply and connect with each other. Tickets £5.00 to participants. Please book your ticket. The Perico Sambeat Quartet in Concert 8.00pm Main Auditorium A night of inspiring music from a truly exciting quartet packed with talent, and led by the fantastic alto saxophone star Perico Sambeat - considered today as one of the most important Spanish jazz musicians to have emerged in recent years, and as one of the best alto saxophonists in the world. Perico possesses tremendous prestige with an extraordinary musical career that spans the globe. He appears on over one hundred recordings, many of which he is the leader.

His work as a composer and arranger has received numerous awards and boasts a long list of musicians of the highest caliber including Brad Mehldau, Kurt Rosenwinkel, Tete Montoliu, Michael Brecker and Pat Metheny. • Perico Sambeat - alto & soprano sax • Barry Green - piano • Arnie Somogyi - bass • Stephen Keogh - drums During Sambeat’s his career, he has received numerous awards including the prestigious “Bird Award” given by the North Sea Jazz Festival to the musician deserving wider recognition (2003), and best recording of the year for “Flamenco Big Band” (2008 and 2009). Sambeat first came to London as the leader of a quartet made up of Brad Mehldau and Stephen Keogh back in 1993. He is now considered to be one of the best musicians that Spain has ever produced. Barry Green plays regularly in jazz venues all over the UK, including Ronnie Scotts, Pizza Express Dean Street, the 606 Club, The Wigmore Hall, The Purcell Room and The Vortex. He has also played internationally in clubs and festivals in Germany, Ireland, Spain, Slovenia, Sweden, Norway, Croatia, Turkey, Italy and France. He has headlined at the Cork Jazz Festival with the Charles McPherson qrt, the Berlin Jazz Festival with Ingrid laubrock and in 2014 appeared at the North Sea Jazz Festival with the Ian Shaw qrt. Arnie Somogyi has performed with a wide variety of musicians from Amy Winehouse and Jamie Cullum to Charlie Watts and John Martyn, and has gigged, toured and recorded with many leading international jazz musicians including Bobby Hutcherson, Art Farmer, Arturo Sandoval, Bud Shank, Charles MacPherson, Stan Tracey, Chris Botti, Herb Ellis and many others. He works frequently at Ronnie Scott’s as part of the club’s house band, the “Ronnie Scott’s All-Stars”. Stephen Keogh became the drummer of choice for many of the greatest American jazz artists to tour Europe, including Charles McPherson, Art Farmer, Harold

Land, Bill Charlap and many others. Over the years he has played and recorded with many of the legendary names in jazz including Eddie Lockjaw Davis, Jimmy Witherspoon, Harry Sweets Edison, Johnny Griffin and Benny Carter, and more recently with Brad Mehldau, Mark Turner and Edward Simon. Recent tours and performances have been with Jason Rebello, Bruce Barth Trio, Larry Willis, Jeremy Pelt and Rene Marie. Tickets £20.00 Guillermo Rozenthuler Solo Set - Voice and Guitar 10.00pm Redwell Maddermarket Bar A rich, diverse selection of the greatest songs from Central and South America including Bolero’s, Tango, Bossa Nova, Samba and Venezuelan folk. Guillermo was born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He is a versatile vocalist, guitarist and composer. and has now become one of the leading voices of tango in the UK, working regularly with various UK and Europe-based tango bands, La Portatil, Mala Pinta, Los Mareados. Formerly the vocalist of Gilad Atzmon’s Orient House Ensemble, winner of the BBC Jazz awards, Guillermo has recorded in their album, Musik, hailed “Best Jazz Album of the Year”. J Lewis, Time Out. “Guillermo has that star quality” Sheila Jordan “Guillermo has rocked me with his amazing swinging versatility. A true World Music journey!” Mark Murphy Tickets £10.00. Late Night Jam Session 11.00pm Redwell Maddermarket Bar Jazz musicians from the city and region are invited to come along and participate. This Jam Session is free entry. We only have limited capacity so please book your ticket to avoid disappointment.

Vintage and Retro Sale Rail Tuesday 12th May 4:00pm6:00pm, free of charge

Interlude - Anglo American Songbook Thursday 14th to Friday 15th May. 1:10pm Thursday and Friday, and 7:30pm Friday Bar event “Interlude” invite you to join them when they return to the Redwell 

Box Office Our box office is situated in the foyer area, opposite the coffee shop. Box Office opening hours Normal Open Hours Monday to Friday 10am to 5pm Saturday 10am to 5pm. On Show Days Monday to Saturday 10am to 7.30pm Sundays 5pm to 7.30pm Booking Tickets Tickets may be booked in person, over the telephone, online, via email or by post. Box Office 01603 620917

2015 May | 55

FINEARTS Maddermarket Theatre Bar to present their “Anglo-American Song Book” An hour of wonderful songs from celebrated songsmiths on both sides of the Atlantic, including a brief tribute to Burt Bacharach and Hal David plus a sing-a-long. Accompanied by Jason Lambert on piano are Melissa Sampson, Suzanne Long and John Hare. See you there! All bar events are sponsored by Sonkai Jewellers. Tickets £6.00

Costume and Wardrobe Event Saturday 16th May 6:00p, Amanda Greenway Wardrobe Mistress Have you ever wondered what goes into creating the costumes for our plays? Head of Wardrobe, Amanda Greenway will be giving some insights into the craft of the theatre costumier in this exciting one-off event. The evening will include an illustrated talk with a question and answer session, a look behind the scenes in the wardrobe and the opportunity to buy retro/vintage clothes and accessories.

for a real treat with this cautionary tale of modern living. An innocent mistake on an estate leads to an alarming escalation of events as the residents of Bluebell Hill Development take extreme measures to protect themselves. Tickets £8.00 - £12.00

Treasure Hunt Sunday 24th May 2:00pm Fundraising event for the family Take a gentle stroll around Norwich answering questions about the various places of interest as you progress. Your journey will take 90 minutes to 2 hours and is suitable for accompanied children, pushchairs and wheelchairs. Meet at the Redwell Maddermarket Theatre Bar and Gallery. You may enter individually or make up a team of up to four persons leaving at 3 minute intervals. All profits go back into helping the Maddermarket Theatre, a registered charity. Prizes Top Prize £50 in vouchers for a meal at Pedro’s Cantina. Instant wins of show tickets will be awarded for those teams with all questions answered correctly! N.B. In the event of a tie, the top prize of £50 in vouchers for a meal at Pedro’s Cantina will be decided by a draw. The adjudicator’ s decision will be final. Tickets £5.00, join us for a free cup of tea or coffee as part of your ticket price.


Neighbourhood Watch Thursday 21st to Saturday 30th May 7.30Pm 2.30Pm matinee on 30th May Norwich Players Described as ‘biliously funny and right on the button’ by The Guardian and ‘disturbingly good’ by The Times, audiences are in 56 | May 2015

Monday 25th May to Friday 29th May Cut Out and Keep Theatre “We encounter a young couple having a domestic squabble, the sort of which we over hear or have everyday of our lives. Nothing extraordinary, no heroic deeds or tragic acts of generosity, just a tiff - or so it would seem.” Lunchtime Theatre performed by Maddermarket Theatre regular actors Jo Parker Sessions and Tom Girvin, performed in the Emerson Studio.

the fures

Please note this production contains strong language. Tickets £60.00

The Fures Sunday 31st May Folk music Legends of Irish music & song The FUREYS, renowned for hit songs ‘I will love you’, ‘Sweet 16’, ‘The Green fields of France’, ‘The old man’, ‘Red rose café’, ‘Clare to here’, ‘Her father didn’t like me anyway’, ‘Leaving Nancy’, ‘Steal away’ etc will play a concert in Maddermarket Theatre on Sunday 31st May 2015. They have been entertaining audiences worldwide for 37 years, audiences that have included former Australian Prime Minister John Howard, Former Irish President Mary McAleese and the late Pope John Paul while Tony Blair has publicly stated his favourite peace song of all time is “The Green Fields of France”. Recently Ireland President Michael D Higgins attended their concert in Dublin’s National Concert Hall. Along with all their hits, they will also be including songs from their new album ‘The Times they are a changing’ They are responsible for some of the most stirring music ever to

capture the public imagination. Their folk / middle of the road based songs and music has received standing ovations in some of the biggest concert halls around the world. A Fures concert is always a night to remember. Tickets £18.00

Box Office Our box office is situated in the foyer area, opposite the coffee shop. Box Office opening hours Normal Open Hours Monday to Friday 10am to 5pm Saturday 10am to 5pm. On Show Days Monday to Saturday 10am to 7.30pm Sundays 5pm to 7.30pm Booking Tickets Tickets may be booked in person, over the telephone, online, via email or by post. Box Office 01603 620917

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From Hotels to Haddock Fine City Magazine find out more about Norfolk chef Eric Snaith and his new restaurant Eric’s Fish & Chips.

ric began his career in the kitchen of his family’s hotel at the age of 15. Then, when travelling around Australia in 1999/2000, he began working as a chef in various kitchens, developing his passion for cooking. On his return to England, he worked as Sous Chef at the Rose & Crown in Snettisham, until in 2003 he returned as Head Chef to family-owned, Titchwell Manor – a 27 bedroom boutique hotel on the North Norfolk coast. Eric has been at Titchwell Manor ever since and gained his third AA Rosette for his stand-out culinary skills in 2013. A Master Chef of Great Britain, Eric also earned the title of the EDP Norfolk Chef of the Year in 2012 and the hotel was named winner of ‘Best Restaurant & Pub Dining’ at the 2013 EDP awards. Over the years, Eric has gained a reputation for producing experimental and innovative food using the finest local ingredients and cutting-edge techniques, reflecting his self-taught ability and enthusiasm for modern cuisine. This year Eric has opened a standalone fish and chips restaurant, down the road from the hotel in Thornham, called Eric’s Fish & Chips. The restaurant serves seaside favourites along with more modern European small plates, unique sides and traditional homemade sauces and, where possible, sources all produce from the local area. Eric says, “We’re really lucky in Norfolk as we have some fantastic produce right on our doorsteps, from Norfolk quail, to Brancaster mussels which I’ve served in the hotel restaurant for years.” “I’m really pleased to have had the opportunity to open Eric’s Fish & Chips and I’d encourage anyone who’s a fan of the British seaside to come along and try our catch of the day.” ❏ For more information about Eric’s new restaurant visit

2015 May | 59


Does Your Bed Go Bump in the Night? Sound Sleep Beds remind us of the importance of a good quality mattress


or most of us a third of our life is spent asleep, meaning the wear on our mattress over time is considerable, yet a staggering 25% of people wouldn’t consider changing their mattress – even after more than 10 years. It is hardly surprising then that 58% of the population complain of waking feeling stiff and achy. Take our Bed MOT (Mattress Obsolescence Test) to find out if you need a new bed. Answer yes or no to the following questions. • Is your bed seven years old or more? • Would it be embarrassing if the neighbours saw it without the covers? • Does it make suspicious noises in the night? • Did you have your best recent nights sleep in a bed other than yours? • Are your waking up more frequently un-refreshed and aching? • Do you and your partner roll towards each other unintentionally? • Are you too close to your partner to sleep comfortably? • Is it sagging? • Does it feel lumpy in the night? If you answered yes to one or more of these questions, then it your bed has failed its MOT and a trip to Sound Sleep for some new bed or mattress advice is essential.

60 | May 2015

The key with mattress buying is to try out as wide a variety of options as possible to find the most suitable mattress for you (and your partner). Given the amount of time you spend in bed, it is important to spend a reasonable amount of time in store trying out new ones, especially if you have been experiencing pains that could come from your existing mattress. It this instance, it may be worth having a chat with your chiropractor for some advice on what they advise is suitable for your back. At Sound Sleep, we stock a variety of brands and different types of mattresses, for example pocket sprung, memory foam, latex and so on. Each manufacturer has different mattresses that offer different levels of support and comfort. When mattress shopping, it is essential to ask for help. We are highly trained mattress specialists and are on hand to advise you, not to high pressure you in to buying something that may not be suitable. Following are just a few quick tips to consider when bed shopping.

How do I know which one is right for me?

and your spine should not sag down or bow up. Also remember as we age, our support requirements change. A very firm mattress when you were 35 may not be so suitable when you’re 45, comfort is important too!

Trying them out Give your self plenty of time and wear loose clothing, this helps you turn and get in and out of beds in store. Our Mattress Specialists will point you in the right direction. Try the advised mattresses for as long as possible to get a good ‘feel’ for them. If you sleep together, you should shop together Always shop with your partner, the bed must be suitable for both of you. As it is inevitable one of you may have to compromise!

Size matters It is scientifically proven that couples sleep better in a bigger bed. The more space you have the freer you can move without disturbing your partner. This is also a good idea if one or both of you get hot in bed. If you are thinking about just a new mattress, before coming to visit us in store, check what kind of base you have and

it’s condition, as some bases may be unsuitable for a new mattress. We will of course be on hand to give you the correct advice and information. All of our divans and mattresses are sourced from National Bed Federation members, so what you are buying is exactly what it says it is, it’s made from new and clean materials and it meets the strict British Standard fire regulations. More information can be found at Now that you have chosen a new bed and mattress, don’t forget that pillows are very important too. A cheap, unsupportive pillow can cause neck and back problems. These are just as important as your new mattress. For more help and advice, visit our in store Mattress Specialists who can talk you through all the pros and cons of various mattresses. We also pride ourselves on having the most up to date mattress technology (as well as the old fashioned technology too!). Sleep has never felt so good! ❏

A mattress that is supportive and comfortable is important, but remember, your requirement for support will differ depending on your weight and build. The best bed for your back is not always a firm one. You need a bed that will provide the right support and comfort for you. When laying on your side, ideally your spine should be parallel to the mattress


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62 | May 2015


Royal Norfolk Show: Tickets Now on Sale It’s show time! Norfolk’s largest annual event, the Royal Norfolk Show, to be held on Wednesday 1st and Thursday 2nd July 2015, is only a 100 days away.


o mark the countdown, the Show’s new website officially launches today and is packed with everything you need to know about the UK’s biggest two-day agricultural show. Highlights for this year’s Royal Norfolk Show include: • Livestock and equine – The traditional heart of the Show will, yet again, be at its very best, for exhibitors and visitors alike. A packed schedule with over 600 livestock classes, 196 special classes and 258 championship classes for cattle, sheeps, pigs and goats. Exclusive to the Show this year will be the Midlands and Southern Highland Cattle Club who will be holding their own show and competitions. • Grand Ring – This year’s centrepiece to the show includes the RAF Falcons Freefall Parachute team, a packed showjumping schedule, military bands, Ride and Drive and the ever popular scurry driving competitions. More displays will be announced nearer to the Show. • Food and Drink – Visitors can sample the very best of Norfolk’s cuisine in the Adnams Food and Drink Experience – the biggest food hall in Norfolk and at over 16 different food courts on the showground. Sizzling sausages, pies, creamy cheeses, posh pop and top Norfolk chefs in the ever popular cookery theatre are just some of the highlights.

• Countryside Ring – Displays of rural skills and pursuits and the opportunity to try pond dipping with Norfolk Wildlife Trust and see rare birds of prey are on offer. There’s also the chance to watch blacksmiths at work designing and creating intricate metalwork – new for the Show this year. • Mr Mawkin’s Farm – The Show’s farm area has a whole new look this year but will of course include all your farm favourites from rare breed sheep and cattle to chickens, ducks and rabbits. • The Discovery Zone Launched last year and sponsored by Norfolk County Council, the Discovery Zone is an exciting educational area featuring a variety of interactive activities covering food, science, arts and sports. The zone is also the start of our trails programme which takes visitors off around the Show to see and learn more about farming life. • Live music and performance – Throughout the two days musicians from schools and bands across the county will be performing on the Show’s bandstand. On the Garage/ Young Norfolk Arts stage there will be an exciting programme of performing arts, including dance and music entertainment. The Joe Ringer Band will also be performing until 10pm on Wednesday 1st July with a bar and food available.

of the year. It’s show time and we can’t wait to welcome everyone to the show to enjoy two packed days of agriculture, business and entertainment. Where else can you see the latest agricultural technology and innovation, taste the finest local produce, see some of the country’s best equine and livestock competitions and enjoy a wide range of experiences from 4x4 off-road driving to cookery demonstrations?” said Julian Taylor, Show Director. “Preparations are in full swing so while we get ready for the Show, we want showgoers to do the same and head to and purchase their tickets. There’s still also time to join the RNAA and gain the full benefits of membership, including premium car parking and exclusive use of the pavilions and grandstands,” he added. Online tickets for this year’s Show go on sale from Monday 23 March 2015 – 100 days from the start of the Show. Those purchasing family tickets will enjoy a reduction in price, in advance and also on the gate. Car park prices have also been held at 2014’s levels and advance car park tickets will be available online and through the Show’s retailer network.

Advance tickets can be bought from the new Royal Norfolk Show website www.royalnorfolkshow. and also from a large network of retail outlets across Norfolk from mid-May. Advance purchase adult tickets cost £20, children (aged 5-16) £7 (under 5’s are free) and family (2 adults and 3 children aged 5-16) £45. A range of concessions are also available. Advance car parking costs £6 per vehicle. Following the Royal Norfolk Agricultural Association’s (RNAA) decision to change its policy, school parties will no longer be charged to bring groups to the Show and as a result demand to come to Norfolk’s biggest outdoor classroom is already very high. Sam Joyce, Education coordinator at the RNAA said: “The excitement is mounting and we have already taken many bookings from schools from across the county. We expect there to be at least 5000 of Norfolk’s school children enjoying their day out. Our Discovery Zone is packed with educational experiences and we have new school trails for our visitors to follow and explore the Show.” To take advantage of this offer schools must pre-order tickets for their parties by 5 June. School group tickets will not be available for purchase on Show days. ❏

“The Royal Norfolk Show is the county’s biggest celebration 2015 May | 63


Las Iguanas


Las Iguanas launch a vibrant new menu for the warmer months

outh America in all its sunshine, technicolour and bursting flavours is about to splash on the scene as our favourite Latin American restaurant - Las Iguanas - launches a brand new and very exciting Spring/ Summer menu, set for launch at all restaurants on the 24th March 2015. At Las Iguanas each dish is tenderly made on site with pride and passion using only the highest quality local produce. And for those truly authentic South American flavours a dedicated team of passionate foodies scour

64 | May 2015

the world for artisan suppliers of hard-to-find flavours. The new menu boasts nine new delicious dishes and a whole host of moreish cocktails and wines each chosen lovingly to welcome in the new warmer climes and bursting with the spirit of Latin America, ready to take you on a culinary journey across this beautiful Continent. Choose from the fresh and healthy cranberry and avocado salad or sample a bit of Brazil with Camarão A La Criolla – succulent prawns cooked expertly in one of the 30 speciality home-made sauces featuring no less than nine

distinctive but complementary flavours. And then why not finish with the new prize winning Tembleque pudding which is a divine mix of creamy coconut with mixed berries and mango puree. But for those traditionalists out there, fear not. All your favourites and more still feature on the famous spoilt-for-choice Las Iguanas menu from the renowned fajitas, burritos, enchiladas and slow-braised chilli con carne, alongside the impossible to resist grilled meats fresh “from the flames” as well as exotic salads, burgers with a difference and a totally irresistible selection of tapas. And if you only want to pop in for an after work drink at the bar, your taste buds will not be disappointed. Adding to the old time favourites you can now choose from no fewer than 13 new cocktails, and a host of new wines, bubbles, ciders and beers. Las Iguanas’ infamous “Happy Hour” has also been extended to include a wider range of cocktails and there’s even some new sharing cocktails to enjoy including a must-try Passion Fruit Cocolada

- a fresh coconut tapped, flesh and all, filled with Malibu and passion fruit purée. Also new to the drinks menu you’ll find some refreshing new Day of the Dead craft beers and flavoured ciders, perfect for summer. This March and until the end of April Las Iguanas have also teamed up with Coca Cola to offer you an unbelievable opportunity to win a trip of a lifetime for 5 nights to Rio de Janeiro to include flights, transfers and accommodation. All you need do is buy a CocaCola product and you will be automatically entered into the prize draw. If you live in Woking, Torquay, Chester and Swansea then get ready because a brand new Las Iguanas is coming to your home town in the coming months complete with the new exciting menu. You can expect a warm and lively atmosphere set in a relaxed and spacious setting, with expert customer care and service delivered with real pride and passion from people who love Latin American and want to share its joys. What are you waiting for? ❏


Welcome to The Little Interior Company The Little Interior Company is a family run business based in Norfolk. We have a passion for vintage, shabby chic and luxury interiors. We are your one stop for Curtains, Lighting, Soft furnishings, Interior Design and Furniture. Our stock is a mix of new and ‘pre-loved’and many pieces have been used for many years resulting in unusual

knocks and marks that give that piece added character. We constantly have a fresh turnover of unique individual pieces of furniture and chairs that, once worked on, stand out from the crowd. We use the finest of materials, of fabrics and paint on everything

we do to make every piece look individual and amazing. We aim to source many beautiful pieces of furniture, so keep in touch so not to miss that special piece or maybe you have one to bring back to life, and if so, drop me line. With vintage and up-cycling now on trend and becoming a much more affordable way of giving your home a new look, by simply giving that much loved piece of furniture a modern twist to fit into your home, The Little Interior Company’s approach to design and furnishing is now a lot easier and affordable. Take a look at our site for advice, services and products to make your house a home, a stunning range of furniture, soft furnishings and design ideas for your home. We are focused on providing high-quality service and customer satisfaction - we will do everything we can to meet your expectations.

Point House, 5 High Street, Coltishall, Norfolk NR12 7AA | 07515 653 197 |

2015 May | 65


The Cellar House Bright future for pub serving Ale in the Vale


his April marks two years since Victoria MacDonald took over The Cellar House and things are going from strength to strength for the Eaton local. Perhaps the seasonally changing menu, guest beers and regular live music are some of the reasons why the cellar house appears to be bucking the trend of British pubs closing down (The British beer and pub association says up to 29 UK pubs close every week)? Victoria said: “It’s a great pleasure to be the custodian of such a vibrant community pub. We still have many more exciting plans and are looking forward to another great summer here at The Cellar House.” 66 | May 2015

This late May bank holiday weekend, The Cellar House is holding its first beer festival in the form of ‘Ale In The Vale’. The four-day event will see numerous real ales, live music, children’s entertainment and barbecues at the pub. “Ale in the Vale will be a lovely, local celebration that we hope to make an annual event, “says Victoria. “It will provide a good opportunity to showcase our lovely village to others”. The Cellar House has seen several changes since Victoria took the keys in April 2013. An initial refurbishment inside and out made the pub a more appealing space to eat and drink. Happily, the original character of the grade 2 Listed building (Originally listed as the Two Brewers from round 1843) is still evident throughout. ❏


The Beehive 9th Annual Beer Festival 3rd to the 6th of July 2015


he Beehive Pub in Eaton, Norwich offers a relaxed and friendly atmosphere in which to enjoy a drink and socialise with customers of all ages. The pub prides itself on featuring an excellent range of real ales (many on hand pump) mostly from local breweries, a good selection of lagers, including Erdinger, a German weiss bier, Aspalls Suffolk cider and a range of bottled Belgian beers (plus lots of wines and spirits too!). The pub boasts three bars, a public bar with original wood panelling and wood floors, a very

popular open plan snug bar and a spacious, yet cosy lounge with leather sofas and soft light for a more intimate drink. The garden has been completely transformed with a large covered patio area with tables and chairs, perfect for enjoying in the summer time or even in the winter! We have even built an all purpose, all weather BBQ area to make our charity BBQs even more popular. This popular Norwich pub has its own large pool rooms (which also serves as a private function room), a very popular dart board (which is also used by our three darts team) and a quiz machine,

plus other pub games such as ‘shut the box’. The private function room is available for hire for private parties and regularly hosts meetings for many local clubs and societies. There are also regular wine tastings and other events hosted by the landlady. The Beehive Public House is definitely the secret jewel of the Golden Triangle! The Beehive Freehouse is proud to host one of the most

popular pub beer festivals in Norwich. In its ninth year the 2015 Beehive Beer Festival will attract real ale drinkers from across Norwich and Norfolk and features over 25 cask conditioned ales and ciders from East Anglia. Now supporting more East Anglian brewers than ever! ❏ Contact the Beehive for more information on 01603 451628.

Woolpack The Woolpack is a pleasant city centre pub situated within the city’s main business district and very close to the city’s busy shopping district. We are very popular with local office and shop workers, as well as shoppers and local residents. We are also a favourite location for office parties and events. We offer a local pub welcome and friendly service as well as a wide range of pub food and drink at great value prices.

Call: 01603 627 047 Golden Ball Street, Norwich, Norfolk, NR1 3EH

2015 May | 67


Fem.ale II Britain’s first brewster beer festival returns to norfolk for the second annual celebration of women in brewing. 22nd to 25th May 2015 – the plasterers arms, norwich


fter the runaway success of Britain’s first Brewster Beer Festival and a year of events in the heart of Norwich celebrating women in brewing, FEM.ALE returns for its second annual flagship festival – and it’s going to be even bigger and better! Women enjoying beer is no new thing in Norfolk – the myths that women don’t enjoy beer or that pubs are a space for men to escape to, find no place in one of the finest cities in the country to find a pint. But while we know beer is loved by men and women drinkers alike, we at FEM.ALE also want to celebrate women who are actually doing the brewing within the industry. As part of the City of Ale Festival, which each year provides a showcase for the pubs of Norwich and their selection of craft beers, the Plasterers Arms is once again devoting a weekend to beer brewed by women that is enjoyed by everyone. For the bank holiday weekend of Friday 22nd ‘til Monday 26th May, all 15 of the Plasterers’ gravity pumps will be dedicated to female brewed ales, featuring two beers specially crafted for us by beer technologist Sophie de Ronde and Adnams brewster Belinda Jennings. Friday at FEM. ALE will see after-work beer cocktails followed by an evening of live music from local female musicians and DJs provided by Pony Up promoter Rosie Arnold, promising to be another great soundtrack to our delicious menu of beers. On Saturday we’ll be welcoming back award winning beer writer, sommelier and booze historian Jane Peyton for

68 | May 2015

a matching of Brewster beers with tasters of local award winning cheeses courtesy of Norfolk’s own Mrs. Temple’s Cheeses. Later into the afternoon we’re looking into the industry itself with a panel of beer experts featuring Britain’s newest Brewster Lizzie Ellis from Lincolnshire’s Horncastle Ales and from London brewery Hop Stuff, Alix Shaw, who runs events across the capital encouraging networks among female brewers and introducing women drinkers to beer too. On Sunday we’ll have more music with female blues bands in the afternoon and on Bank Holiday Monday we’re celebrating with our first Science of Beer event where more female beer experts will introduce the scientific precision that goes into brewing an excellent beer and the fascinating concoction of ingredients that give each ale its own flavour. We’ll also be taking over the Plasterers’ Monday night Quiz with QUIZTERIA, a pub quiz with a FEM.ALE twist! We want everyone to feel welcome at FEM.ALE so we invite everyone to come, drink and be merry! Stand by for more info and line-up news and we’ll see you in May! ❏ The Plasterers Arms, 43 Cowgate, Magdalen Street plasterersarms

FEM.ALE Schedule of Events Friday 22nd May 2014 Celebrate the start of the City of Ale festival with beer cocktails from 17:00, fabulour Brewster brews and live music and DJs all night long! Saturday 23rd May Join us at 14:00 for a tasting of delicious local cheeses and Brewster beers with Jane Peyton. Stay put with a pint until 16:00 for a discussion panel from Lizzie Ellis from Horncastle Ales, Alix Shaw from Hop Stuff Brewery and Jane Peyton too, telling us how they brew their beers, the history of women and beer what it’s like being a woman in the beer industry. Saturday night we’ll be starting up the party again with DJ’s, dancing and beers from brewsters across the country. Sunday 24th May We’ll have live music from

a female fronted blues band in the afternoon and a meet-the-brewster beer tasting with Norfolk brewmaster Jo Coubrough. Monday 25th May At 13:00 we’ll be hosting The Science of Beer! Join us for talks from female beer experts on how they use their degrees in science to produce their amazing range of beers. It’s not drinking. It’s SCIENCE. And at 20:00 we’ll close the weekend of events with QUIZTERIA, a pub quiz with a FEM.ALE twist, smashing sexist slurs of the past and celebrating great women of history. And we’ll finish off the FEM.ALE weekend with a final toast to great beer from great brewsters! For more information, please contact Erica Horton


S&C Window Repairs Windows give your property character and individuality, but also offer the practicalities of insulation and security


ecause of their very nature, the windows and doors on your house or bungalow are a significant investment and cost. Problems, however, can occur – hinges and locks may break or stick, handles work loose, there may be draughts around the house and windows may become “blown” or steamed up. But rest assured, these issues do not have to prove as expensive to remedy as you may think - and repair is usually the best and most cost-effective course of action, rather than replacement. Steve Olley, who has 20 years experience of repairing doubleglazed and sealed-unit windows, knows that an effective repair can give windows a new lease of life. “A lot of people think that when the glass has blown when you cannot see through a window properly - or that there is condensation on a window or that doubleglazed units become steamed up, that they need a whole new window,” explained Steve, who runs S&C Window Repairs with his wife Clare. “But repairs are relatively straightforward and not expensive. The glass can come

out of the frames and be replaced, so there is simply no need to go to the expense of having a whole new window and frame.” S&C Windows provides a service to repair windows, doors and conservatories and that includes misted or broken sealed units, UPVC window and door repairs, conservatory repairs, patio door repairs, worn

out window hinges, broken window handles and locks, and draughty doors or windows. The replacement glass includes clear, patterned, toughened, leaded and Georgian bar windows. New locks and handles, bathroom and kitchen windows, hinges, patio doors and cracked panes can all be easily and effectively dealt with. It’s not only with repairs, the same applies for upgrades as well such as to A-rated windows with the highest grade glass. Covering the whole of Norfolk from bases in Norwich and near Holt, S & C Windows, can upgrade standard windows to A-rated windows, without removing the frames and merely by changing the quality of the glass. Steve said: “We can do upgrades with the highest quality glass without changing the frames.” In the 1970s and 1980s people often selected golden handles for their windows, commented Steve, but they can also be changed quite easily to give the windows an upgrade and a modern new appearance. “I am cheaper than other operators and can offer costeffective solutions with a quick response.” he added. Customers ring through to Steve’s main contact number

where a call operator will take brief details and instantly send them on to Steve via text. “I’ll then telephone the customer to make an appointment, make a visit to assess what they need and if they are happy with the quote place an order for what is needed and then arrange a convenient time to install.” he said. “Most jobs are straightforward. With a draught, for example, the solution can be something as simple as a hinge that needs replacing. I’ll give my customers an honest assessment and offer a quick, often same day or next day service.” “The call-out is free and we can show people that their windows can be repaired to a high standard without them incurring the cost of replacement.” S & C Window Repairs are experts in repairing windows, doors and conservatories, providing a friendly and reliable service which will “take the pane out of window repairs.” ❏ If you have a problem with your windows and need a quick, reliable and costeffective repair, give Steve Olley of S&C Windows a call today on 0800 160 1932 or visit

2015 May | 69


70 | May 2015


Parking Prices Put Drivers Off High Street We look at how parking prices are affecting our lives


he cost of motoring - as all drivers know to their cost - seems to be scaling everincreasing heights. Road tax, insurance and fuel prices are on a continually upwards spiral and now another motoring bill is adding to the burden on hard-pressed Brits. Parking prices rose by 12.5 per cent last year alone, forcing UK drivers to spend a massive £8 billion a year on parking their cars. But this parking spending spree may be about to grind to a halt as the cost has grown from a necessary inconvenience into a leading factor in the deterioration of the country’s high streets. Research by has found that over-priced parking is now proving to be too great a turn-off for the majority of UK shoppers with over two thirds of Brits saying that they avoid shopping areas with high parking fees. An overwhelming 65% of adults quizzed say more affordable parking would tempt them back into shopping on the high street - which would provide a much-needed boost for the struggling retail sector. However, the hope of parking without paying extortionate rates looks to be a faraway fantasy across the country as more than three quarters of Brits currently spend up to £150 on parking each month. While this might seem steep, it’s a far cry from the prices people in the Knightsbridge area of London face. Drivers in the city centre have to live with the country’s most expensive car park which charges £36 for three hours parking - an average of £12 an hour. With so much being spent on fees, it’s not surprising that more than three in five drivers list the price of parking as a key consideration when deciding

where to go shopping. With over half of all parking spaces in the UK being pay-to-park, a staggering 82% of people start spending before they even make it to the shops. Moreover, British shoppers are frustrated that the car parks they’re forking out for simply aren’t up to scratch. More than one in five feel the current services don’t offer enough space, and with just a third of the country’s car parks offering more than 100 spaces, it’s not surprising that 60% of motorists spend between six and 20 minutes searching for a space every trip. In a bid to cut the costs - and the frustration - has launched a Parking mobile app which could save drivers hundreds of pounds a year by allowing them to check out the prices of nearby car parks. For example, shoppers using Birmingham’s Royal Angus street car park twice a week, could save themselves £888 a year by making the five minute (1.3 mile) drive down the road to the Livery Street multistorey car park. But, the company says, this cost of laziness is symptomatic of the entire country with motorists in Birmingham, Bristol and Edinburgh all guilty of paying over the odds in the name of convenience. Gareth Kloet, of, says: “In today’s difficult financial climate, people have had to find ways to save every penny possible. “Over-priced parking charges are a problem that every motorist in the country has to deal with but hopefully our Parking app will help people throughout the UK save money when it comes to parking their cars. “The fact that the app is so easy to use should also help them save time by finding parking spaces more easily.” ❏ 2015 May | 71


Mobiles Driving Motorists to Distraction We look into the statistics surrounding drivers using their mobiles at the wheel, and the dangers it can cause


obile phones are now such a part of our lives that for most of us they’re the last thing we see at night and the first thing we look at in the morning. Our addictive relationship with the gadget has grown in proportion to the apps we rely on to direct our daily lives - not all of which are to our benefit. The dangers of using a mobile while driving are well documented and do attract a £60 fine, three penalty points and higher insurance premiums.

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Yet new research reveals that despite the practice being illegal since 2003, three quarters of British drivers see others using mobile phones on some or most journeys, while a quarter spot drivers using their mobile on every trip. And it’s not just talking that’s the problem - some drivers are texting, emailing, Tweeting, updating their social networks or taking photographs on the move. The AA/Populus poll of nearly 21,000 drivers found 42 per cent say they used a hand-held phone in the car even though

nearly two thirds admitted it distracted them from driving. Some 20 per cent confessed to texting behind the steering wheel, four per cent admit to checking emails and two per cent have sent emails or read Twitter or Facebook updates on the move. Another worrying and morbid development is the advent of “digital rubber neckers” - drivers who feel the need to use their phones to film or photograph serious crashes on the motorway, says the motoring organisation. In one incident on the M1 in Northamptonshire, police recorded 80 drivers using their phones or cameras to photograph emergency services carry out a four and a half hour rescue of a woman trapped in her crashed truck. The seriously injured driver was eventually flown by air ambulance to hospital and survived the crash. The police have contacted most of the drivers to warn them about their illegal and irresponsible behaviour but have not brought any prosecutions.

Edmund King, AA president, says: “Drivers need to concentrate on driving rather than be distracted by their digital technology. Our research shows that some drivers are now using their smart phones for more than talking on the move. It is really not smart to talk, text or tweet on the move. “Digital rubber neckers who photograph crashes really are morbid voyeurs who should be concentrating on the road not the victims of crashes. It beggars belief that these macabre motorists should put their lives and others at risk through their lust for twisted metal. “We would like to see the police target more mobile phone abusers so that the message gets out that it is not worth hanging on the telephone while driving. However, we have seen a 29% reduction in traffic police in the last decade so their resources are stretched.” Road safety charity Brake’s campaign urging drivers to put their phones out of sight and out of mind while driving warns that using a phone behind the wheel can lengthen reaction times to a similar extent to drink driving, significantly increasing the risk of crashing. The charity says unlike other types of deadly risk-taking, men and women - young and old - are almost equally guilty of using their phone behind the wheel, showing widespread misunderstanding of the dangers. Julie Townsend, Brake deputy chief executive, says: “Use a phone while driving and you are taking a horrendous risk with your own life and the lives of others. Many drivers who wouldn’t dream of drink-driving are using phones while driving, oblivious that the effect on your reaction times can be similar. “We’re urging people to drive smart, recognising that phone use at the wheel can and does destroy lives, and no call or text is ever that important. If you need to use your phone urgently, pull over somewhere safe first: it’s as simple as that. We are also calling on the government to do more to tackle phone use at the wheel, including banning hands-free phones and bringing in far stiffer penalties.” ❏


Win AMini! or £10,000 cash!

All you have to do is complete the following sections and send it back to ensure your are included in the draw. Or enter online at: Only one entry per household Your name: How much is your home phone bill ? £ Your address: YES


household bills every month?



Would you like to have an extra income?



Would you like to pay less than that? Postcode: Your landline contact number: Your email address:

Would you like to save 25% on your other

Please send your entry to: FineCity Magazine, Queens House, Queens Square, Attleborough, Norfolk, NR17 2AE. Terms & conditions apply. Go to for full T’s & C’s.


Hagstrom Saab As you will see we are passionate about Saabs, and with good reason


s an independent specialist and now an Authorised Saab Repairer and Parts Supplier, we have a wide range of Saabs for sale and offer servicing, repairs, spares, accessories, MOTs, power upgrades, modifications,

air-conditioning and friendly advice! We have a Gargantuan supply of s/h mechanical parts in stock not yet listed on our accessories/parts page. We are situated just south of Norwich in Norfolk, East Anglia. We have Tech II diagnostic equipment. Courtesy cars are provided

where necessary and every tradein proposal is considered. We accept most credit cards, online bank transfers, payment via paypal and orders may be placed by phone and posted internationally. We are open Monday-Saturday and Sundays by appointment. Browsing through our Facebook page, Hagstrom Saab: Independent Saab Specialist, Norfolk, will give you a flavour of what we’re about! We have a particularly good stock of new parts for the Saab 96 and Saab 95

which are often difficult to find. Looking for a SAAB? If the model you’re searching isn’t listed, we may be able to source it for you through our web of connections. We can also provide a home to any retired or surplus Saabs you have with a view to keeping them on the road. We have an extensive range of literature and what has been described as an Aladdin’s Cave of accessories and parts. We look forward to meeting you. ❏ Tom Hagstrom

 aab 9-3 Anniversary S Convertible - £3995

Saab 9-3 1.9 Turbo Diesel Sport Wagon

£2795 Saab 9-3 1.9 Sedan Turbo Edition

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Hagstrom Saab Authorised Saab repairer and parts supplier We have a great variety of Saabs for sale

£6200 Saab 9-3 Vector Convertible Auto

Contact information We offer: Servicing • MOT • All repairs Tech II diagnostics • Key programing • Air con Advice and courtesy cars available

74 | May 2015

Hagstrom Saab, Unit B Gale Business Park, Ayton Road, Wymondham, Norfolk NR18 0QQ. Only 2 minutess drive from the A11, 5 minutes walk to Wymondham Station. Mobile 07946 467654 Landline 01953 602754


SAAB SPECIALIST FOR ALL YOUR SAAB NEEDS Sales, servicing, parts, diagnostics and Saab repairs undertaken. Loan cars available.

01603 722811 Wood Green, Station Road, Salhouse NR13 6NS

INTRODUCING THE ALL NEW XC90. WELL WORTH THE WAIT. If you are looking for great savings on quality used cars in the Wymondham area, then you have reached the right place. Brent Lennon Cars are a specialist used car dealer based in Norfolk. We are proud to offer you a first class customer service and very competitive pricing, so please browse our stock list. At Brent Lennon Cars we stock a range of used cars to suit all budgets and lifestyles so we are sure to have the right car for you.

Register your interest for our exclusive reveal event on June 12th at Holden Motors.

Contact us


Avenue Road, Wymondham, Norfolk, NR18 0QF 01953 600704 | 07771 544620

Holden Motors

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Barker Street Norwich NR2 4TQ Call 01603 756655

2015 May | 75

Let your true colours shine

Put some wow in your wardrobe! Spring/Summer collections now available

FineCity - May 2015  

The May 2015 edition of FineCity Magazine for Norwich

FineCity - May 2015  

The May 2015 edition of FineCity Magazine for Norwich