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Dame SHIRLEY BASSEY Joins forces with popular man band Blake

GORGEOUS GIFTS GUIDE Unique festive treats for all the family

SEASONAL BREAKS Winter holiday destinations… Be inspired!




WHAT’S NEW? Local news stories from the last few months

12 | OUT & ABOUT


December events to get you in the mood

21 | CELEBRITY INTERVIEW Dame Shirley Bassey has recorded a Christmas single



24 | VISIT NORWICH We love Elm Hill in the heart of the city

27 | VISIT SOUTH NORFOLK Eight must-see places south of the county

30 | GIFT GUIDE All-essential present-buying inspiration



32 | RECIPE OF THE MONTH Seasonal local produce is on the menu this month

45 | VINTAGE SHOOT Fiona Harrison captures the glamour of the 1940s



48 | TRAVEL GUIDE Norfolk holiday cottage or a luxury London hotel?

56 | THEATRE TIME Jennifer Ellison is in town as Snow White’s evil queen



61 | COMPETITION! Win a delicious Norfolk Bronze free range turkey


21 To advertise call 01953 456789


Christmas at Bradley Hatch


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Jonathan Horswell @JonathanHorswel DESIGNER


Daniel May @danielmaydesign ADVERTISING SALES

Harry Cawley


Tom McHarg


Luke Keable


Thomas Dick

Malcolm Duffey

Alice Instone-Brewer Sally King Mark Mitson

Lisa Dawson

Harry Farrow

Fiona Harrison

David Morris

John Bultitude

Steve Browning

Ann-Marie Matthews



elcome to the 50th edition of Norfolk On My Mind Magazine. It has been almost 10 years since Norfolk’s longest-standing free lifestyle magazine was launched, and we have enjoyed many wonderful changes during this time. Most recently, the magazine has been acquired by the Spider Creative Media team, who promise even more exciting times ahead with the launch of a Suffolk On My Mind publication… Watch this space! This issue, we’ve been getting into the spirit of the festive season with our December events round-up (p12), Christmas gift guide (p30) and seasonal spiced apple cake recipe (p32). Fresh from the recording studio, we were thrilled to chat to Dame Shirley Bassey and the boys from Blake, who have joined forces to release a Christmas single (p21). The perfect stocking filler for any Bassey fan. Although our roots are firmly in North Norfolk, we’ve been out on the road to explore those hidden gems south of the county. You can read about our favourite places to visit on page 27. What’s more, we ventured into Norwich for a healthy slice of culture and a spot of Christmas shopping (p24)! That’s not forgetting all your favourite must-read features from the worlds of photography (p36), property (p40), fitness (p41), interiors (p43) and fashion (p53). Plus, check out our fabulous vintage-inspired photoshoot on page 45! Whatever you’re up to this holiday, whether it’s a peaceful winter break (p48), or fun for all the family at this year’s Snow White pantomime (p56), we would like to take this opportunity to wish you a merry Christmas and all the very best for 2016. See you in the New Year!

Queens House, Queens Square, Attleborough, Norfolk NR17 2AE PHONE

01953 456789

Don’t forget to enter our competition for your chance to win a Godwick Norfolk turkey (p61). Be quick, the closing date is Friday 18th December.




Spider Creative Media Disclaimer All rights reserved. No part of Norfolk On My Mind may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any other form, or by any other means, electronic, mechanic, photographic, recording or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the owner of Norfolk On My Mind. Every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of material published in Norfolk On My Mind. However, the owner cannot accept responsibility for the claims made by advertisers or contributors, or inaccurate material supplied by advertisers. The views expressed are not necessarily those of the Editor. Although all reasonable care is taken of material, photographs and transparencies submitted, the owner cannot accept responsibility for damage or loss.

To advertise call 01953 456789

To subscribe to Norfolk On My Mind (five copies per year), please write to Norfolk On My Mind Magazine, Queens House, Queens Square, Attleborough, Norfolk NR17 2AE. Please enclose cheque made payable to Norfolk On My Mind to the value of

£15 (annual rate including postage).



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Emcy’s 2015 Christmas showroom is open! Everyone has been busy beavering away behind the scenes to bring a feast of festive cheer... They’ve got artificial and pre-lit trees, loads of lights, baubles, wreaths, tinsel, bows, ribbons, ornaments, garlands and much more, so pop in to see for yourself. Located next to the tearoom, the Christmas display has grown over the years to become a riot of colourful fun. Celebrating the 150th anniversary of Lewis Carroll’s Alice In Wonderland, join in the Hatter’s tea party, find the Cheshire Cat grinning amongst the trees, have your photo taken as Tweedledum or Tweedledee, and follow the White Rabbit… Just don’t be late! Packed with a large range of gift ideas, clothing and everything you need for your winter gardening, Emcy is much more than just a garden centre.

The Red Hart in Bodham has welcomed a new head chef, Russell Morris. Russell has worked as a chef for the past 12 years, and in Norfolk for seven years at many of the county’s great restaurants up and down the coast. His style of food is based on the great seasonal produce that can be found here in Norfolk, with an emphasis on locally sourced fish, game and meat. Classics include free range pork belly and local baked crab, along with a fantastic selection of ever-changing specials and delicious desserts. A traditional 17th century inn, The Red Hart guarantees a friendly welcome, complete with dog-friendly bar and relaxing lounge area in which to linger in front of the log burner during the cold winter months. Serving food seven days a week, come and try Russell’s new menu for yourself!


If your New Year’s resolution is to take up something new, Active Norfolk is inspiring young people to get active and healthy. If you are between 11 and 25 years old and not very sporty, Active Norfolk Satellite Clubs are a great way to get involved in social sport. They are easy to join, low cost, and available at a choice of venues across the county in and around King’s Lynn, Cromer, Fakenham, Burnham Market, Holt, Norwich, Aylsham, Swaffham and Dereham. Enjoy high-quality PE, sport and physical activity, and be encouraged to fulfil your potential. Working in partnership with Norfolk’s local authorities, Public Health Norfolk and Sport England, the aim is to increase participation in sport and physical activity. For further information, call 01603 732333 or visit To advertise call 01953 456789



BIMBLEBOX NAME YOUR PRICE? WHY DID YOU START BIMBLEBOX? As holiday cottage owners ourselves, we’ve used a few big agencies over the years. Despite having really popular cottages here in Norfolk, there were always weeks they couldn’t sell for us. If we asked the agent, they’d say anything over 25 weeks was a good result but we didn’t agree. We wanted more bookings and for people to enjoy our cottages, and Norfolk, all year round. We did some research and realised that nowadays people like to book their holidays later and later. They also like to find a deal! Rather than leave the cottage sitting empty, we knew we’d take a reasonable offer which still worked for us, as we found being flexible significantly increased our bookings. After a year or so, some friends asked us to do the same with their holiday cottages. Before we knew it, BimbleBox was born! HOW DOES IT WORK? It’s very simple! People who want to book a holiday cottage within the next six weeks simply visit the BimbleBox website and look for somewhere lovely. They’ll already find a 10% discount, but if they’d like to make an offer they can. They’ll find out immediately if it’s been accepted!

SLEEP TIGHT If you’re playing host to lots of visitors this time of year, you will want your home to look its best and guarantee your guests a peaceful night’s sleep. When it comes to gorgeous handmade beds, The Wrought Iron and Brass Bed Company in Shernborne is a family-run company, where all their beds are crafted in Norfolk and come with a lifetime guarantee. Inspired by traditional designs with some more contemporary looks thrown in for good measure, there’s a variety of styles on offer, ranging from iron beds to ornate brass and nickel designs. Customers are also provided with a variety of adaptations to suit their specific needs, so if you have your eye on a bespoke bedstead that will stand the test of time, be sure to pay a visit to the company’s extensive showroom to view their entire range in situ.


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For owners, they simply register their property, set a reserve price and tell us what dates they still have available within the next six weeks. They get a second chance to sell their late availability! WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE NEXT FEW YEARS? To grow BimbleBox! The number of owners registering their properties with us is rising every week. We launched with properties in East Anglia, but we’re now going national. HOW IS BIMBLEBOX DIFFERENT FROM OTHER HOLIDAY LETTING SERVICES? Visitors to our website can find a great holiday cottage and make an offer! We only list holiday homes available in the next six weeks, so it’s all about last-minute deals for customers and selling late availability for owners. If the customer’s offer meets or exceeds the owner’s reserve price, they can book it there and then. WHY SHOULD HOLIDAY PROPERTY OWNERS USE BIMBLEBOX? For owners, it’s about having control. They simply tell us if and when their holiday home is unsold and set the minimum amount they’d accept. BimbleBox gives them another

opportunity to fill any late availability, at a price which works for them. That’s got to be better than an empty holiday home! Think of BimbleBox as a ‘bolt-on’. We don’t want to replace their existing agency or marketing. We are simply there when their normal advertising has let them down. It only takes a few minutes to register. In fact, we’ll do it for them! All they then need to do is let us know when their holiday cottage is free in the next six weeks. It won’t cost them a penny unless someone books.


WE UNDERSTAND YOU SUPPORT A FEW CHARITIES? Yes, we support Nelson’s Journey and East Anglia’s Children’s Hospice (EACH), both here in Norfolk. There’s a great motto in business; make some money, then make a difference. That’s a big part of BimbleBox. We had a very special family stay in one of our holiday cottages. The young father was terminally ill and they were making some lasting memories. It only seemed right to play our small part, so we donate 1% of everything we earn to the two charities. We can also help owners wishing to use their cottages to give back too.

BimbleBox is the middle ground, where everyone gets a fair deal!

Find a cottage, make an Offer, pack your bags and go. It’s that simple! Or, buy now at a 10% discount below the standard rate. What’s your Offer?

Upload your property details, place your Late Availability and set your Offer Reserve. We do the rest!

For more information visit 01603 568273

FREE registration 3 week commission FREE period Refer another Owner and get another 2 weeks commission FREE period

Late availablility on Holiday cottages. Make an Offer! To advertise call 01953 456789




It’s a very exciting time for the team at The King William IV in Sedgeford, with an action-packed events calendar guaranteed to make your Christmas one to remember. Combining cosy log fires, an extensive winter menu boasting tasty, hearty dishes, plus comfortable luxury accommodation, The King William IV offers the ideal bolthole for getting together with your loved ones this holiday. What’s more, if you book a two-night stay this winter, you can enjoy a third night half-price (subject to availability). Reward vouchers are issued throughout November and January… For every £25 spent, you will receive a £2.50 voucher to be used on your next visit. And if you’re still looking for a thoughtful Christmas present for someone special, a King Will dining or accommodation voucher is sure to make them smile on Christmas morning!

Built in 1833, The Crawfish Inn, located on the main Fakenham to Holt road, is the only public house in Thursford village. With a reputation for creating authentic Thai cuisine by obtaining the finest ingredients from Thailand, it remains a popular eating house for locals and visitors alike, particularly at this time of year, with Thursford’s Christmas Spectacular in full swing. The combination of classical Thai seasoning with fresh local produce gives the freedom to offer an extraordinary array of distinctive dishes, from the pleasantly mild to the intensely spicy. So no matter what your palate, you will find something on the menu to your liking. Open daily from 5pm to late during Thurford’s Christmas show, it is the ideal place to meet, either for a social drink or a sit-down dinner.

SHOW YOU CARE Christmas is a time for giving, so it’s perfect timing to show your support for local children’s hospice charity, East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices (EACH). There’s a Santa Run in Eaton Park in Norwich on Sunday 6th December, where hundreds of Santas will race to raise funds dressed in full Santa garb, and a Santa Skydive at Beccles Airfield on Friday 11th to Sunday 13th December. To book your place, call 01502 476131. There will be family carol services across Norfolk with a collection in aid of the charity, as well as EACH gift cards as a charitable gesture either from yourself or as a gift for someone else this Christmas. Plus, if you would like to volunteer to help with valuable fundraising work, get in touch for details. Call 01953 666767 or visit


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To advertise call 01953 456789



Capture the festive spirit at a Christmas venue near you.

AN AUDIENCE WITH FATHER CHRISTMAS Holkham Hall, Holkham, Wells-next-the-Sea, Norfolk NR23 1AB. Tel: 01328 710277. Friday 18th to Monday 21st December. £15 each.


s the big day approaches, make Christmas extra-special by joining in the fun with Father Christmas and the gang, as they stop off during their busy schedule to entertain the crowds in the saloon at Holkham Hall. A chance to listen to tales of wonderment and chat with Father Christmas and his band of cheeky elves, you’re sure to be filled with plenty of festive cheer. There’s a present for all of the younger visitors, plus a soft drink and a Christmas biscuit, as well as a glass of Prosecco for the grown-ups. What’s more, you will also have the chance to pick up last-minute gifts and yuletide treats in the Christmas pop-up shop after the fun-filled 50-minute performance.



Hoveton Hall, Hoveton, Norwich, Norfolk NR12 8RJ. Tel: 01603 784297. Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th December, 10am to 3pm. £6 each.

Norwich Cathedral, 12 The Close, Norwich, Norfolk NR1 4DH. Tel: 01603 218300. Friday 11th December, 7.30pm to 9.30pm. Ticket prices vary.

oin Father Christmas and his real-life reindeers at Hoveton Hall near Norwich in December for a magical Santa trail, which concludes with a meeting with the man himself, who will have a small gift for each of the well-behaved children. For the adults, the ticket price includes a glass of mulled wine and a yummy mince pie, while there will be a fantastic selection of local crafts stalls to visit under cover in the stable yard at the hall (just in case of snow showers!), so you can stock up on handmade stocking fillers for big and little kids alike. There’s no need to book, just turn up on the day, but you may wish to bring your trusty wellies and waterproof should it rain, as the Santa trail runs right through the beautiful gardens.

feast of Christmas music, both sacred and secular, Norwich Cathedral Choir invites you to an evening of traditional music and merriment, with carols for both the choir and audience, to welcome Christmas 2015 in style! Sing your heart out as you soak up the atmosphere of Norwich’s famous cathedral, glowing amid flickering candlelight. The Refectory will be open before the performance, offering its regular menu to concert-goers, so you can enjoy a home-cooked meal before the event. Make the most of your visit with a browse around the cathedral shop, presenting a wide range of locally-sourced, unique gifts.

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DEEPDALE CHRISTMAS MARKET Dalegate Market, Burnham Deepdale, Norfolk PE31 8FB. Tel: 07776 254019. Friday 4th, Saturday 5th and Sunday 6th December; Friday 2pm to 8pm; Saturday and Sunday, 10am to 4pm. Free admission.


tart the festive season with a really enjoyable shopping trip to the North Norfolk coast, where you’ll uncover wonderful presents and decorations from a huge gathering of independent traders that you just won’t find on the high street. Now in its sixth year, Deepdale Christmas Market runs over three days in early December, celebrating all that we love about Christmas, with over 90 stalls in attendance, plus seasonal entertainment and activities for all the family. Dalegate Market shops and café will also be open throughout the whole of the weekend. Promising lots of shopping inspiration, as well as great food and drink from Norfolk’s producers, why not combine your visit with a walk on the beach? WELLS CHRISTMAS TIDE Various locations in Wells-next-the-Sea. Saturday 5th to Sunday 13th December. Free admission (exceptions apply).


ells Christmas Tide has been extended this year from three days to more than a week, lighting up the town’s central green, the quay and its main shopping street, Staithe Street. Two large marquees will house a Christmas market featuring stalls selling food, drink and gifts, as well as an entertainments stage. And, this year, visitors will be able to glide their way into Christmas by hitting the ice at the brand new skating rink. With a host of musical acts and entertainers, cookery demonstrations, children’s film screenings, a pantomime, evening carols, prize bingo, a cocktail evening, a ‘onesie’ night, brass bands, fire-eaters, stilt-walkers, circus acts and a beer festival, Wells is a must-visit destination this Christmas. To advertise call 01953 456789



Feature writer Thomas Dick shares some of his winter highlights.


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Written by Thomas Dick


n the winter months, our wonderful county has just as much to offer as during the busy summer period, with the added bonus of there being fewer tourists around, the roads are quieter, and Norfolk’s wide open skies are often at their most beautiful. So, here’s my guide to making the most of the local area in the wintertime.

COME TO NORWICH AT CHRISTMAS Norfolk’s capital city gives Christmas visitors everything they could wish for, from eye-catching Christmas light displays and seasonal themed river trips, to stores brimming with festive goods and locally produced delights. Home to one of the last remaining city centre markets in the country, you’re guaranteed to find the perfect gifts, stocking fillers and dinner table treats. Plus, don’t miss the Christmas performance of The Messiah in the magnificent setting of Norwich’s mediaeval cathedral, which dates back to the 11th century.

BOOK A COTTAGE BREAK Most of the holiday cottage letting agents have accommodation available throughout the autumn and winter. If you are looking for a relaxing weekend escape, a selfcatering cottage offers a cosy home-away-from-home with all the creature comforts you could crave. If you would prefer not to run the risk of being snowed in when bad weather hits, make sure you choose a location within walking distance of a local town or village. And don’t forget to bring your walking boots! What’s more, rates are considerably lower out of season, as well as the option of special last-minute rates.


Photo courtesy of

In summer, The Broads can resemble the boating equivalent of some of our motorways, but when autumn arrives, the waterways quieten down. Hire companies rent out cruisers throughout the year, so this is one of the best times to get out onto the water, at a reduced off-peak price. Why not rent a boat for a few days and cruise through the stunning countryside at your own leisure? Many of today’s modern boats have central heating, while mooring is easier because you won’t find yourself queuing for a space. Sleeping under the stars then waking up surrounded by a slight mist which has settled over the water, you’ll really get a sense of being close to nature.

To advertise call 01953 456789

HIT THE BEACH Norfolk’s sandy beaches stretch from The Wash between King’s Lynn and Hunstanton, whose beach has the distinction of being the only one in Norfolk where the sun sets to the west over the sea. Brancaster, with its picturesque beach chalets, follows the coastline east from Hunstanton, before



hitting the vast expanse of Holkham Bay, truly one of the most spectacular beaches anywhere in the world. Going south brings us to the beach at Wells, which, again, is backed by traditional beach huts, which sell for the price of small houses in some parts of the country.

SPOT THE BIRDS Moving further east, the landscape starts to change from sandy beaches to salt marshes, most of which are National Trust property and home to many migratory birds in the winter… A bird watcher’s paradise! En route, stop off at Morston or Blakeney to take a boat trip to Blakeney Point to view one of the largest breeding colonies of grey seals in the country. Beyond Blakeney, Cley is home to an RSPB viewing centre, which provides plenty of information for keen twitchers, as well as a lovely coffee shop.


Blickling Hall

There is an abundance of impressive country homes in Norfolk. Arguably, some of the most spectacular are Houghton Hall and Holkham Hall. Some remain in private hands while others such as Oxburgh Hall, Felbrigg Hall and Blicking Hall are managed by the National Trust. They run a programme of seasonal events, so do check their websites before planning your visit. Even if you do not wish to look around the house, a nature walk in the park can be just as appealing.

ENJOY THE THEATRE The King’s Lynn Corn Exchange is open year-round, with an annual pantomime in December... This year, it’s Robin Hood. Sheringham Little Theatre is presenting Cinderella, while Norwich Theatre Royal is putting on Snow White. And that’s not forgetting the amazing Thursford Christmas Spectacular, which attracts thousands of visitors to Norfolk. Cromer Pier Pavilion also sees large audiences come to enjoy its Christmas end-of-pier show, one of the last remaining shows of its kind in England. Local communities have recently installed satellite receivers on the roofs of village halls, theatres and cinemas,


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North Norfolk Beach

Holt Christmas Lights. Photo courtesy of Edward Jones

so you can even watch live performances from the West End of London, New York’s Metropolitan Opera and The Mariinsky in St Petersburg right here in our county.

SEE THE LIGHTS The Christmas lights in Holt are some of Norfolk’s finest! This little market town is transformed into a winter wonderland of white lights outlining the elegant gables of the Georgian town centre, with a total of not one, but three, pretty Christmas trees in place. Drawing in coachloads of tourists to admire the town’s efforts, why not stop off for a glass of mulled wine in one of Holt’s pubs or wine bars?

DISCOVER THETFORD FOREST On the border between Norfolk and Suffolk, Thetford Forest is home to a myriad of different trees, plants and associated wildlife. It is open from dawn to dusk throughout the year, with many organised walks and trails to enjoy. Visitors are attracted to the peace and tranquility of the forest, as well as the wide range of recreational facilities including the Go Ape zip-wire adventure course.

Thetford Forest Photo courtesy of

To advertise call 01953 456789



The Gallery Norfolk in Cromer is home to popular glass artist, Naomi Brangwyn.


very artist works in a medium, such as oils, watercolour, charcoal, stone or bronze. Naomi Brangwyn’s preferred medium is glass – stained glass. If those words suggest solemn church windows, then think again! Naomi’s pieces are lively, imaginative, a breath of fresh air – and perfectly scaled for a domestic setting. Many of them evoke the landscapes and seascapes of East Anglia – she has lived in Suffolk since the 1980s, and on its coast since 2001. Naomi said, “Moving to a home by the sea was significant for both my life and for my artistic identity. Norfolk, in particular, inspires me with its unspoilt nature. It’s full of hidden

secrets. You go round a corner in the road and a new view unfolds. The county’s vast skies dictate the mood, as the light shifts in intensity and the colours change.” She does not, however, seek to portray specific locations: “It is more about using my imagination to capture an experience. A fun day on the beach with the warm sun and breeze on your cheeks, and lunch in the beach hut; a solitary walk with the sand between your toes; searching for shells in an inlet; taking an evening walk and discovering a patch of reeds gently swaying by a pool...” Naomi added, “It’s fascinating to take something that moves and changes and to capture its spirit in something as still and delicate as a piece of glass. I never cease to be intrigued by the process of talking this hard,


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flat, brittle material and transforming it into sky or water, or something as soft and delicate as a field poppy.” Always exploring and always experimenting, Naomi uses traditional stained glass techniques, but produces art that is, as she says, ‘a unique combination of glass, lead and nature’. The colours and patterns of the glass further spark Naomi’s imagination. She said, “Some glass just cries out to become a sunset, surf, or a calm sea,” as she sets about creating her pieces, using a bold, graphic style, avoiding formality and symmetry, and always aiming for spontaneity. Often, she will literally add an extra dimension by layering the glass – and by integrating pieces of decorative metal or found objects such as shells and pebbles. Engraving can also play a part. All this means that each of her pieces is different – and each is individually signed.


Naomi’s work can be purchased at The Gallery Norfolk in Cromer. For further information, call 01263 515745 or visit To advertise call 01953 456789



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Dame Shirley Bassey joins forces with British trio Blake in the fight for the Christmas number one single.


eaming up with vocal harmony group, Blake, Dame Shirley Bassey has recorded her first ever Christmas hit, ‘The Christmas Song (Chestnuts Roasting on an Open Fire)’, set to be the soundtrack for the festive season, with soaring strings, swoonsome harmonies and, of course, Dame Shirley’s distinctive voice. During recording of the single’s video at a North London studio, alongside Blake’s Ollie Baines, Humphrey Berney and Stephen Bowman, Dame Shirley revealed, To advertise call 01953 456789

“I would love to have a Christmas number one.” So, how did this special collaboration come about? Dame Shirley explained, “Blake sang Moon River at my 70th birthday party, and then we met again at the reception of Variety’s 70th anniversary six months ago. Ollie mentioned singing a Christmas song together, and I said I’ve never done a Christmas song before!” Blake toyed with the idea of writing an original song, but decided that, when

recording a voice as iconic as Ms Bassey’s, only an absolute classic would do. Having compiled a shortlist of their favourites, Dame Shirley chose the one that she liked the best, which turned out to be The Christmas Song. After the recording, Dame Shirley said, “I was quite overwhelmed because it just fits my voice so well. I was amazed how well our voices blended. It’s so lovely to finally get to release a Christmas song, and my royalties will go to Noah’s Ark Children’s Hospital in Cardiff.”


WHEN BLAKE MET BASSEY… Blake band member Humphrey Berney is from Norfolk. We spoke to Humphrey following his studio date with Dame Shirley. Where did you grow up? A. I was raised on a farm about five miles from East Dereham. My parents moved from there a few years ago, but I still think of it as home. It’s full of memories. Q. What do you love about Norfolk? A. I love the fact that it is still relatively unspoilt. It has so much to offer, from the stunning coast, The Broads, the huge skies, numerous amazing country estates and houses, wonderful produce, and its great history of art and music. It also has one of the finest cathedrals in the country. People always says it’s such a hassle getting there, which means they only come to Norfolk when they want to and it stops it changing too quickly. You can really escape from busy modern life.


band, we try and explore the towns we visit, looking for good local antique shops. Q. What was it like working with Dame Shirley Bassey? A. It was the highlight of my career so far. To meet her, listen to her stories and then to hear that voice was something else. She sounds so amazing, I could never get tired of that voice. To sing with her is something I will never forget. Stars like her just don’t exist anymore. She is from a time when people were famous and successful for having a fantastic talent, rather than being on some reality TV show. We laughed so much talking about her sketch with Morecambe and Wise, which is one of my favourites.

Q. Do you come to Norfolk on tour? A. Of course! The audiences are always great and very vocal, whether it is The Corn Exchange in King’s Lynn, the end of Cromer Pier, or in the magnificence of Norwich Cathedral.

Q. What did you learn from her? A. To give everything you have. That honesty in her performance is one of the keys to her success, and every singer and artist can learn from that. She is also great fun, has a wicked sense of humour, and clearly loves life.

Q. How do you relax when you’re on the road? A. I always take my gym kit and running shoes, as exercise is a good way to unwind. As a

Q. Are there any other singers you would like to work with? A. I think Tom Jones is one of the greatest voices of all time, and like Shirley, is still

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sounding incredible in his later years. I have met him a few times, but it would be great to collaborate. Q. How will you be spending Christmas this year? A. With family. Lots of Champagne, open fires, food and laughter. I can’t wait! Q. What’s on your Christmas list? A. A Christmas number one has to be top! Other than that, I will be with my wife, my dog Claude and all our family, so that sounds pretty good to me. ‘The Christmas Song’ will appear on Blake’s new album ‘A Classic Christmas’, which also features a collection of timeless Christmas songs including ‘Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas’, ‘Frosty The Snowman’ and ‘Let It Snow’. For further information, visit

To advertise call 01953 456789



WHAT A FIND! Written by Alice Instone-Brewer

Alice Instone-Brewer chats to antique collector and taxidermist James Milne, who owns a curious shop on Elm Hill.


ames Milne’s shop is a charming yet peculiar place that sits tucked away in a courtyard off Norwich’s famous Elm Hill. The tiny, warmly lit room is filled with awaiting discoveries; ornate Dutch clocks hang beside WWI gas masks, a prop medieval jousting lance leans against a giant mounted tortoise shell, and everything from elaborate model pirate ships to a xylophone


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made of bones fills the spaces in between. There aren’t many people whose impulse purchases have included the skull of an Oriodont (a 35-million-year-old saber-toothed sheep), but when James found one, he just had to have it. “There’s not a particular thing that I’m going for,” the collector explained with a shrug. “I just buy what I like.” The 31-year-old lived in the shop when it was run by his father. James said, “We used to live upstairs. It was a fun place to grow up!” He moved away when he was 16, but returned in 2008 when his father passed away, to continue the family business. Norwich is a city full of antiques shops, but what sets this one apart is that is has real character. From every nook, a frozen creature spies on the day’s customers – the longer you look, the more appear. Taxidermist James stocks a wonderful combination of old finds and his own creations. He said, “Largely what I’m doing at the moment are private commissions. There seems to be a far higher demand for commissioned taxidermy than

Photo by Daniel Tink -

one might think. I’ve just had to do a mouse circus!” Mr. P. Milne’s Antiques and Curios has been ‘servicing your idiosyncrasies since 1983’, and an exploration of the city’s hidden treasures would not be complete without a peek inside. James added, “There are few things that have been here longer than I have.”


Very occasionally, local antiques fairs and museums will succeed in coaxing the artist out of his den. James said, “I particularly like Strangers’ Hall, and The Bridewell Museum has an amazing apothecary in there. It’s huge!” However, it is the world’s oddities that pass through his door that really make James happy. He added, “It keeps me alive, and more importantly, it keeps me sane.” Mr. P. Milne’s Antiques and Curios is at 2 Wrights Court, Elm Hill, Norwich NR3 1HQ. For further information, call 07989 412924. To advertise call 01953 456789




a solicitor?

THE HAZARDS OF A HOMEMADE WILL Will is probably the most important document you will ever have drawn up, so why do it yourself rather than instructing

It is probably safe to assume that many people who choose the homemade route do it to save money, but little do they realise that it may cost their family a great deal when a lawyer has to sort things out after their death. If you instruct a lawyer to draw up your Will, you will meet a legally qualified person who listens to what you want and advises on how your wishes can be carried out. It is important that your Will is stored safely and can be found easily. Your lawyer Written by Ann-Marie Matthews

will store the Will for you free of charge in a strong room or safe, and some will send you reminders to review your Will to make sure it is up-to-date. Be careful when it comes to cheap Will writers as they are often not legally qualified, and they may make an annual storage charge which could cost you several hundred pounds. We advise you not to cut corners when making a Will as this may lead to high legal costs or an invalid Will, which could mean your assets being left to those you don’t wish to benefit. If you would like to discuss making a Will, contact Ann-Marie Matthews at Nicholson Solicitors on 01603 478567 or email

COMMON PROBLEMS WITH HOMEMADE WILLS INCLUDE: For a Will to be legally binding, it must be signed by the person making it and witnessed by two independent adults who must be present at the same time. If they sign at different times, the Will is invalid. If someone who may benefit from the Will acts as a witness, this could compromise their inheritance. The Will is lost!


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Hingham, Photo by Daniel Tink

Venture south of Norwich to discover more of our county’s charms.

To advertise call 01953 456789


the stunning 15th century Holy Trinity Church, Loddon has many fine buildings, reflecting the town’s growth over the centuries. For the visitor, Loddon offers scenic walks, and a variety of shops, eateries and pubs. If you’re in the mood for a cup of coffee and a slice of cake, Rosy Lee’s tea room is a local institution, serving sandwiches, homemade soup, light lunches and sweet treats made by ladies of the WI. What’s more, The Loddon Swan has recently opened four luxurious B&B rooms alongside its award-winning bar and restaurant.

Somerleyton Hall Estate


“FRITTON, SOUTH-WEST OF GREAT YARMOUTH, IS RENOWNED FOR ITS OUTDOOR WATER CENTRE AND FRITTON LAKE COUNTRY PARK, PART OF THE 5000ACRE SOMERLEYTON HALL ESTATE” 1 SURLINGHAM The village of Surlingham is situated in a scenic river valley, some seven miles east of Norwich. It sits in a horseshoe bend of the River Yare, attracting many visitors keen to explore its two wildlife reserves, the Church Marsh bird reserve and the Ted Ellis nature centre. For walkers and cyclists, it is on the Wherryman’s Way and the N1 national cycle route, while it is also a popular riverside destination for those living in Norwich, not least because

of its wonderful waterside pubs. It’s also a great overnight stopover for those enjoying a boating holiday, as well as holidaymakers taking a weekend break. Surlingham’s Pottles Barn offers a charming B&B and self-catering accommodation, a stone’s throw from the village’s main attractions.

2 LANGLEY Langley Abbey was founded by the Premonstratensian order of White Canons in 1183. The vaulted former cellarium is still standing, and there are remains of the church, barn and fishponds. The western range has recently been restored and now houses a fullscale model of the original monastic layout, plus interpretation boards telling the fascinating story from foundation to dissolution. The estate’s history goes back much further than the abbey and includes some interesting earthworks dating from 4000 BC. A prehistoric arrowhead is among recent archaeological finds. Now a unique wedding and events venue, Langley Abbey is also home to the Norfolk Polo Club.

3 LODDON Loddon is a small market town on the river Chet, within the bounds of The Broads, Britain’s largest protected wetland. Centred around


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Fritton, south-west of Great Yarmouth, is renowned for its outdoor water centre and Fritton Lake Country Park, part of the 5000acre Somerleyton Hall estate. A fab family day-out, you can take part in open water swimming, canoeing, rowing, cycling, go-karting, and pitch and putt golf. If you’re interested in visiting the hall, there’s a Christmas Cracker Fayre on Saturday 12th and Sunday 13th December… Shop ‘til you drop from carefully selected artisans, flocking to Somerleyton from right across the region. The Fritton Arms nearby has nine beautiful guest rooms, offering a special place to stay, surrounded by 200 acres of mature parkland and bordering the banks of the lake. A quintessential English country house feel, it is the ideal destination for pre-Christmas dinner and drinks. The focus of the menu is on fresh, local produce, with many ingredients sourced from the estate’s larder.

Hingham, Photo by Daniel Tink

5 HINGHAM Hingham is a quaint market town in rural Norfolk, 17 miles from Norwich, where grand Georgian architecture surrounds the village green. In the 18th century, the socialites of high society built and took residence here, and it became fashionably known as ‘little London’. Despite the influence of neighbouring Norwich, an active and independent town life continues to thrive, and the many varied shops, such as Mongers Architectural Salvage and Hingham Furniture, ooze real character. There’s

Diss Mere, Photo by Daniel Tink

Boats Moored at Loddon Photo courtesy of

also a traditional bakery, where freshly-made loaves, cakes and pastries are prepared on site, as well as the much-loved White Hart, a family-friendly restaurant, providing outstanding service, modern British cuisine, and a welcoming environment for everyone to enjoy.

6 HARLESTON Harleston has been a market town on the Norfolk/Suffolk border since at least 1369, and still holds a Wednesday market. It is ideally placed for those wanting to explore the Waveney Valley, while it’s also a prosperous rural centre, where narrow streets, quaint alleys and timber-framed buildings hint at its long history. Harleston Museum has displays relating to the life and times of the people of Harleston and surrounding parishes, from prehistoric times to the present day, giving visitors a potent mix of history, memory and gossip. To advertise call 01953 456789

The town’s excellent individual speciality shops include butchers, bakers, womenswear, kitchenware, antiques and chocolate. And the large selection of catering establishments covers everything from a quick coffee and sandwich, to gourmet dining. Fancy learning a new skill? The Workhouse in town is a state-of-the-art teaching environment, with courses and classes in art and design, cookery, home crafts and wellbeing.

7 THETFORD Thetford, in the Breckland district of Norfolk, is noted as the birthplace of Thomas Paine, one of the Founding Fathers of the United States (a statue of him stands on King Street). An amazing heritage, which really sets Thetford apart, influential historical characters, great thinkers, revolutionary engineers, and, of course, Dad’s Army, have all paid a visit to the town over the last few centuries. All external scenes of the BBC series were filmed in the area, and the town’s flint buildings doubled for Walmingtonon-Sea. The Dad’s Army Museum in the Guildhall is dedicated to preserving Thetford’s connection with the BBC comedy. If you like museums, also check out the Charles Burrell Museum, which tells the story of the Charles Burrell Works, a local Thetford

Harleston Photo courtesy of

business that once supplied steam-powered engines all around the world.

8 DISS Diss in South Norfolk, on the border with Suffolk, lies in the valley of the River Waveney around a mere (or lake). It has a large number of wonderful historic buildings including timberframed 16th century architecture, a 14th century parish church, and Grade II listed Corn Hall, now a thriving entertainment venue. Diss is also the start of the Boudicca Way walking path to Norwich, which goes past the old Roman town of Venta Icenorum, located at modern-day Caistor St Edmund. Nearby are Bressingham Gardens and Steam Museum and the airfield buildings of the 100th Bomb Group Memorial Museum at Thorpe Abbotts. Filled with speciality shops and a bustling market every Friday, it’s well-worth a stop when heading south of the county.




ALL WRAPPED UP Unique present ideas for both him and her.





8 9 30

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Photographs Books Homewear Clothing Accessories

1. Emma Bridgewater Rose & Bee teapot, £59.95, at Daisy Park 2. Wellington Boots soaps, £23.95, at Annabel James 3. A Sunny Day sign, £55, at Norfolkboy 4. Terrier Dog apron, £17, at Sophie Allport 5. Magpie Birdy II cake tin set, £30, at Cotswold Trading 6. Alphabet mug, £10, at Oliver Bonas 7. Oilcloth shopper, £20, at At Home In The Country 8. Personalised Heart chopping board, £15.99, at Swanky Maison 9. Stag lamp, £150, at The French Bedroom Company

As seen in Coast Magazine 2a New Street Holt Norfolk NR25 6JJ Tel: 07802 437141 Email: Follow us

10. Man candle, £12.99, at The Oak Room To advertise call 01953 456789



TEATIME TREAT Written by Mark Mitson

Mark Mitson, pastry chef at The Assembly House in Norwich, satisfies his sweet tooth with a seasonal spiced apple cake. 32

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e get through some 100,000 scones a year at The Assembly House, so when the festive season approaches, I take the opportunity to mix up the flavours. Personally, I don’t think you can beat the classic raisin and sultana scone, whether it is being enjoyed on its own with an afternoon brew, or as

part of a full-blown afternoon tea surrounded by dainty sandwiches and cakes. However, at Christmastime we like to add dried cranberries to our scones, accompanied by a generous amount of clementine zest. And when it comes to our cakes, apples united with mixed spice make a mouth-watering combination.


meet, eat, drink and stay INGREDIENTS 115g unsalted butter 300g Bramley apples, peeled and chopped 50ml water 75g caster sugar 2tbsp Calvados 175g light brown sugar 3tbsp Golden Syrup 2 eggs 1tsp vanilla extract 200g self-raising flour 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda 1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and sliced 2tsp mixed spice

METHOD Lightly grease a 10-inch cake tin. Melt 25g of the butter, add the Bramley apples, water and caster sugar, and cook until soft. Add the Calvados and bicarbonate of soda then leave to cool. Beat the remaining butter, light brown sugar and syrup until it is light in colour. Slowly add the egg before adding the flour, vanilla and spices, beating for one minute. Fold the apple purÊe into the cake mix and pour into the cake tin. Arrange the sliced Granny Smith apple over the cake. Bake at 160°C for 45 minutes.



FESTIVE FEAST Chef Harry Farrow is a big fan of Christmas entertaining. Written by Harry Farrow @HarryFarrowChef @morstonanchor


love this time of year when everyone seems in a good mood. It’s all about relaxing with family and friends, catching up with people who you haven’t seen in a while, eating lots of food, and drinking too much mulled wine! There’s nothing I don’t like about Christmas, and the smells and the flavours that are available here in Norfolk are really exciting for chefs. Having said that, I do get a day off on Christmas Day, as my mum always cooks the dinner. I am at work in the morning, as we open The Anchor Inn for drinks, then I head over to my parents’ house in the afternoon. Norfolk turkey is on the menu at home, served with all the accompaniments. We make pigs in blankets from Arthur Howell’s famous sausages, and stuffing from his sausage meat, combined with chestnuts, bacon and Norfolk Dapple cheese for an extra touch of richness. If you’d prefer an alternative to turkey, I can recommend Norfolk Cobb chicken from the award-winning Fruit Pig Company. Bigger than a turkey, this traditional chicken is full of intense, juicy flavours. Wild sea bass has also recently become more readily available due to the southerly winds pushing it closer to shore. Served very simply on a bed of seasonal vegetables, this tasty fish has proved a real hit with diners looking to try something different this season.

Speaking of vegetables, my good friend Jonny Cubitt of New Barn Farm in Blakeney has been busy growing a host of delicious winter vegetables in time for Christmas, from Jerusalem artichokes and curly kale, to beetroot, leeks and butternut squash. His apples are also worth mentioning. Instead of old-favourite Christmas pudding, why not prepare a delicious apple tarte tatin, served with homemade brandy ice cream? I always try to cook food that I myself would like to eat. I get my inspiration from visiting well-established restaurants like Le Gavroche in London or Le Manoir in Oxfordshire, then try to give these tried-andtested dishes a Norfolk pub twist! But, Christmas is not a time to reinvent anything; it’s about enjoying a traditional meal surrounded by your loved ones, with plenty of wine flowing! If I could share one little tip to make your Christmas feast go with a bang, it would be to get ahead of yourself. Peel and prepare your vegetables the night before, and get your bird in the oven nice and early, so it can rest for up to an hour before serving. That way, you won’t be stuck in the kitchen all day, but you’ll have time to put your feet up and chat with your guests.

Apple Tarte Tatin

Wild Sea Bass Pigs In Blankets


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The Anchor inn is open from 9am until 11pm daily, serving food from 12-3pm and 6-9pm.


We serve high quality local fish, game, meats and vegetables, cooked to perfection.

CONTACTS Arthur Howell Butchers Tel: 01328 710228. Ferndale Norfolk Cheeses Tel: 01263 577640. The Fruit Pig Company Tel: 0845 548 0046. Jonny Cubitt Tel: 07853 875713. For further information on The Anchor Inn, call 01263 741392 or visit To advertise call 01953 456789



Written by David Morris

Photographer David Morris marks the 50th edition of Norfolk On My Mind Magazine by browsing through some of his past features.


ometimes it’s a struggle thinking of a topic for my section in the magazine, but with the 50th issue in mind, well, that gave me a lot to think about. She’s certainly put on a lot of weight since I first started writing for her; not the editor, the magazine. A lot more pages with a lot more content, beautifully laid-out by Dan, the magazine’s designer, who always makes my spread look wonderful.

Beach Huts Normandy

Looking back over some of the subjects I’ve covered, it’s easy to see some themes reemerging. I photographed the cavalry on Holkham sands and on their open day at Bodney Camp. I did some of the photographs in infrared, which were well-received, so I went back there again this year. I was keen to try and capture the spirit of the cavalry, and infrared did this perfectly. Ah, now there’s a topic for another article! And I’ve been out on my trusty canoe searching for places most photographers can’t get to, in order to find less predictable images in this much photographed county. Which reminded me, I once issued a challenge to our readers to see if they could find a way of giving photographers 10 or 15 feet of height to get above hedges, obstructions and the general flatness in which Norfolk glories. I use a tall aluminum ladder for height, and, as I said, a canoe to find the unusual. Maybe by combining the two, I could double my chances of achieving the perfect shot. Maybe not. But the challenge still stands. If anyone can invent a lightweight way of a giving a photographer extra height, he or she stands to make a fortune. And yes, I know all about cameras stuck on the end of poles. Not for me, I’m afraid. Another topic for the magazine I think.

Sailing by Cromer


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Thundering Hooves

“AND I’VE BEEN OUT ON MY TRUSTY CANOE SEARCHING FOR PLACES MOST PHOTOGRAPHERS CAN’T GET TO” And, of course, there’s the subject of beach huts! They always make great stories. The beach huts in Cromer have been wrecked twice by violent seas. It certainly made for interesting photographs, but not so much for the poor owners. I prefer a far gentler image captured along the Normandy coast. The French love their beach huts as much as we do, and they do it in style. Their corporate colour schemes look wonderful; they must think we are a rough lot with our individualistic any-colour-goes attitude.

Dave’s Canoe

The power of the sea still continues to excite and intrigue. I was pleased with ‘Sailing by’ taken near Cromer Pier. It was a perfect night with hardly a ripple on the sea. I waited for the surf to form an almost straight line before taking the shot. Furthermore, when the sea is in a furious temper, there are even more dramatic shots to be had. I photographed Happisburgh a few years ago when it looked like a war zone. It’s clearly worth a revisit. Now I think there must be enough there for another 50 editions. ‘Waiting’

You can view more of David’s work at

To advertise call 01953 456789



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psizing or downsizing happens for most of us at some time in our lives, whether increased space is required for a growing family, or the children have flown the nest and a smaller house is necessary. Often a move can be due to the need for space to work from home, or to accommodate an elderly relative. Downsizing is not the easiest decision, and one that posed me quite a problem when I was asked to sell a lovely cottage, but on the understanding that the goat called Bluebell was also included in the sale! The owners were moving and couldn’t take her with them, but didn’t want her to have to leave her home. I have known goats, chickens and even a pig to have been involved in house sales before, and these transactions always seem so much easier than the arguments over fixtures and fittings. Upon visiting another house with a large garden and a small woodland area, I noticed

a small headstone. The owners said they were digging up the remains of their pet and taking the headstone with them! Plus, there’s the story of another family coming back to England after many years living in France. They packed the removal van not only with their furniture, but boxes of tomatoes and vegetables from the garden, as they couldn’t bear to leave them behind. It’s always difficult to downsize, as we all collect so much over the years, but how do you decide what to part with? Those who enjoyed the film ‘The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel’ may remember the couple looking at a retirement bungalow and the wife, in desperation, saying she didn’t want to end up as a beige person in a beige bungalow. A group of people from different lives are then all attracted to the advertisement for luxury living in an Indian hotel and an exciting new life, although it doesn’t quite turn out as they expected…


With 35 years of experience, Malcolm operates Norfolk Property Search. For further information, call 07434 934 579, email or visit

COME TO THE NORFOLK PROPERTY EXPERTS Are you looking for a home in Norfolk and want to make it a reality? The Norfolk Property Search Team has over 35 years experience in the Norfolk Property Market. If you are looking to purchase a property in Norfolk, we are the property experts on the ground. Whether it is a dream beach holiday getaway, a village retreat or a family home, we can help you to find the perfect property. Norfolk Property Search is committed to providing a professional, friendly and reliable service for people looking to search for: Town, Country and Coastal Property Cottages

Family Homes

Second Homes

Country Houses Barn Conversions

Buy-to-let Property Executive Rental Properties

Tel: 07434 934 579

Email: Visit:

To advertise call 01953 456789


The Regional Agents with National Marketing



GUIDE PRICE - £899,000

GUIDE PRICE - £375,000

An attractive barn conversion with a separate 1 bedroom annexe and extensive garaging, all set in grounds of almost 1/2 acre (sts) with fine field views. EPC – D.

A deceptively spacious extended 4 bedroom single storey residence occupying a good sized plot backing onto fields with double garage. EPC – D.



GUIDE PRICE - £550,000

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An attractive 4 bedroom brick and carrstone detached period residence situated in grounds of approximately 2 acres, subject to survey, with separate studio. EPC – E.

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An attractive 3 bedroom period cottage situated in a pleasant location with good sized gardens. EPC - D.

A 5 bedroom detached period residence situated in grounds of approximately 0.4 acres s.t.s with outbuildings. EPC – F.

See all of our properties at,, and all other major property websites. King’s Lynn 01553 770055 40

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Fakenham 01328 855899

Wells-next-the-Sea 01328 710666

London 020 7298 0329


Sally King of North Norfolk Coastal Fitness says age is just a number.


s we grow older, our physical fitness plays a huge role in the quality of our retirement lifestyle. Regular exercise will keep your weight down, reduce the risk of heart disease and other serious conditions, as well as helping to boost your self-esteem. So, why do so many people allow themselves to become increasingly inactive after retirement? Bizarrely, it is human nature that the more time you have, the more you waste. Inactivity can trigger depression, but by starting a programme of regular activity, you can quickly turn things around. Making it part of your everyday life will, in time, significantly decrease ill health. If your fitness levels are low, it is important not to do too much too soon. When people jump into a new exercise or activity and hurt themselves, they sometimes vow never to do it again, so build your new regime gradually.

So, what’s available to us here in Norfolk? At North Norfolk Coastal Fitness, we provide a number of classes to encourage fitness in both indoor and outdoor settings to suit everyone’s needs. Total Low impact Conditioning, for instance, is a gently challenging class designed to get the body and mind moving in the way it is designed to move. Why not join a yoga or Pilates class? With regular daily practice, you will see real progress. The options are endless – join an outdoor walking group, enrol with a local gym, or you could even try your hand at golf. Playing golf has many physical and mental benefits. In addition to good exercise, it encourages interaction with others and allows you to enjoy the great outdoors. Another activity you could take up is bowling, which is a great sport for all ages. Besides being fun and competitive, it helps to tone and strengthen the muscles. It can also promote weight loss (depending on the amount of effort you put into the game), as well as enhance your social life.

How about taking to the water? Sailing is a good way to boost cardiovascular fitness and muscle tone. Being out on the water improves your mood, not just because of the calming effect of the water, but the saltiness of the air is charged with ions that help the body’s oxygen absorption, which, in turn, results in more balanced levels of serotonin, the feelgood hormone. There are various sailing clubs around Norfolk, so why not give it a go? With so many reasons why you should keep active, be inspired to find an activity that suits you, and enjoy the positive knock-on effect it will have in all other areas of your life. For further information, call 07867 791034 or visit


To advertise call 01953 456789


MyChild & Company offers a bespoke nanny agency service to families in Norfolk. We understand that families have their own, unique requirements so our childcare consultants take great care to find nannies and babysitters who can meet them.


Registered Charity: 1097815.

Easy clean shower panelling “Feel safe� shower trays Flexi-safe shower splash screens Slip resistant flooring Anti scald shower mixer Fold away Shower seat Instant heating Easy-rise raised toilets Confidence giving grab rails Automatic WC Bidet seats Wheelchair accessible sinks

Discounts for OAPs, less abled, British Legion, Ex Forces and Age UK members


01263 713066

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Get in touch to request a FREE survey & quotation

01603 605518

Reduced rates of VAT apply for MS, Parkinsons, Diabetes, Arthritis, Cancer sufferers


Written by Lisa Dawson

Lisa Dawson, founder and director of Lisa Dawson Interiors in Aylsham, is preparing her home for Christmas.


ince my last column, Lisa Dawson Interiors has been on a rollercoaster of experiences including our annual jaunt to Decorex to see all the latest fabrics, lighting and accessories, followed by the Grand Designs show for recent developments in building materials. We have also been busy furnishing nine fabulous luxury B&B rooms at The Dial House in Reepham, as well as working closely with lighting, staircase and kitchen and bathroom designers at a gorgeous barn refurbishment in Newmarket. With every experience come wonderful gems of information about new products, design ideas and knowledge, all of which I have been sifting through in my mind to deliver a festive interiors piece ahead of the Christmas period. As I have said before, the key to creating a stylish yet comfortable winter interior is capturing the feeling of warmth. This is most successfully done with the use of colour, texture and lighting. Lighting should be applied in layers to offer flexibility. For example, a sitting room will benefit from table

lamps for a gentle atmospheric glow, while picture lights or directional down-lighters can be used to highlight special items. A chandelier or pendant can add drama, whereas standard lamps may be used as task lighting. LED strips are no longer the preserve of night clubs or teenage girls’ bedrooms! Placed behind discreet pelmets or running along the tops of bookcases and kitchen units, these ingenious lights can operate at a height that’s not always covered by conventional lighting. But if you’re not keen to call out the electrician a few weeks before Christmas, there are many other ways to get set for December. As ever, cushions, throws and rugs ensure texture and colour, and as they are easily changed, you can afford to follow trends. Look out for anything with a slight Eastern feel… Ikats are big at the moment, along with paisley and Indian embroideries. Focus on hues of burnt orange, mustard, burgundy and indigo. Rolling out a beautifully woven kilim will immediately give impact to a pale carpet, while also protecting it from the horrors of tipsy guests brandishing mulled wine and crumbly canapés!

11 Penfold Street, Alysham, Norfolk, NR11 6ET Telephone: 01263 732524 Email:


For further information, call 01263 732524 or visit To advertise call 01953 456789



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Inspired by the 1940s, costume artist Fiona Harrison captures the glamour of the good old days.

To advertise call 01953 456789



like to have a photographic record of all my vintage clothes, and having had the pleasure to work with Norfolk photographer Angela Adams a couple of years ago, I was keen to team up with her again. When Angela suggested the Control Tower (situated on the B1105 between Fakenham and Wells) as a possible location for our 1940s photoshoot, I was blown away by the venue’s potential and wonderful location, offering the perfect backdrop to show off my stunning wardrobe. Originally built in 1943 on the former RAF North Creake airfield to control all 199 and 171 squadrons take-offs and landings, The Control Tower has had many uses over the years, but current owners Nigel and Claire have lovingly transformed it into a unique

place to stay, providing double B&B guest rooms with period en suites, and delicious, locally sourced vegetarian breakfasts. I have always admired Art Deco design, so I was absolutely thrilled when we were lucky enough to be given complete access to Nigel and Claire’s beautiful home. Before long, we were shooting not only in the B&B kitchen, but up on the roof! Even the Control Tower cats, Window and Mandrel, took part. Angela Adams has a rare photographic talent, which can elevate the ordinary into the extraordinary. In my line of work, I use photographs all the time to illustrate my love of vintage fashion, so it is amazing to find a photographer who can do justice to my gorgeous garments.



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CONTACTS Model & Costumes: Fiona Harrison Tel: 01525 370453. Photography: Angela Adams Photography Tel: 01508 484098. Venue: The Control Tower Tel: 01328 821574. To advertise call 01953 456789

Bricks Pantiles Pamments Doors Stone Flooring Fireplaces Garden Statuary Oak Beams Reclaimed Flooring Oak Framed Buildings

WE WISH YOU ALL A WONDERFUL CHRISTMAS Helhoughton Road, Hempton, Fakenham, Norfolk NR21 7DY

T: 01328 864743 |



Do you fancy a luxury city hotel with Christmas shopping at your fingertips, or your own Norfolk cottage complete with log burner and every home comfort?


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5/7 Rue Thérèse, 75001 Paris. Tel: 0033 01429 61001. Expect to pay from around £140 per room per night.

11 Rue Paul Baudry, 75008 Paris. Tel: 0033 01450 43030. Rates start from around £160 per room per night. Written by Daniel May


f being a five-minute walk from the Champs-Élysées sounds like heaven, while also having the convenience of being perfectly located in a peaceful Parisian rue, then Hôtel Le Marianne is the one for you. Completely re-modelled by architect Vincent Bastie, this beautiful building is also the first hotel project of decorator/designer Charles Zana, reflecting his talent in creating living spaces that have been styled to promote a calming, homely ambience.


nterior designer Jean Louis Deniot has been commissioned to create a hotel with 21st century retro charm, which is immediately felt as you enter the ground floor of Hotel Therese, with its rich colours and vintage fabrics, taking inspiration from the main decorative trends of the past decades. A stylish bolthole for every discerning traveller, this elegant hotel is in the heart of Paris’ Right Bank, close to The Louvre, Le Palais Royal and l’Opéra, as well as a short walk from the city’s great cultural spaces, business centres and famous department store Le Printemps. Priding itself on its high levels of comfort, Hotel Therese has 40 uncluttered rooms, each designed with total relaxation in mind, from the luxury-soft beds and sumptuous bedding, to the sweeping Paris views and chic modern bathrooms. (Take your pick from a classic, traditional, deluxe, club or executive room.) Guests also have the opportunity to unwind in the designated hotel lounge, providing the perfect backdrop for business meetings and private gatherings. When it comes to breakfast, a continental buffet is prepared with great care by the kitchen team, whether served in your room or in the vaulted breakfast room. Start your day with a choice of fresh fruit, pastries, continental meats, cheese, cereals and yogurts, as well as a selection of juices, teas, freshly brewed coffees and hot chocolate. For busy visitors with little time to spare in the morning, an express breakfast comprising a hot drink and croissant is offered in the guest lounge as a lighter alternative. However you wish to spend your day, the front desk is happy to assist with restaurant bookings, activities, shopping tips and transportation (including transfers to and from the main airports). As this part of Paris offers an eclectic mix of traditional fabric manufacturers, trendy galleries and fashion shops, you can really get a sense of the city’s evolution into the cultural hotspot we see today. Relax with a cappuccino in one of the fashionable bistros, mingling with businessmen, artisans and visitors from around the world. Or, if you’d prefer to head back to the hotel, a complimentary afternoon tea is served to guests between 4pm and 6pm... Perfect for a quick pick-meup before freshening up and heading out for supper!

The well-appointed bedrooms blend both classic and modern touches with neutral colourways and luxe materials, promising to make their lucky guests feel truly spoilt. Complete with every creature comfort you could crave, from super-spacious beds through to well-planned bathing areas, no stone is left unturned. The impressively high ceilings, which are typical of the Haussmann period, provide a unique sense of airiness, ensuring a restful haven in which to revive the senses. You’ll certainly have to fight the temptation to want to stay in your room! Situated in Paris’ eighth arrondissement, along Rue Paul-Baudry, Le Marianne is in close proximity to most of the city’s iconic landmarks. If less sightseeing and more shopping is your thing, the fashion mecca of Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré, which hosts fashion houses of designers such as Christian Louboutin, Chanel and Saint Laurent, is only a 10-minute stroll from the hotel. Just make sure you take your credit card! After an exhausting day on your feet, return to the hotel and take a seat in the serenity of the hotel lounge. Curl up next to the distinctive fireplace or sit back under the skylight, and delight in a little savoury or sweet snack, a hot or cold drink, or top-end wines and liquors. The Honesty Bar is at your disposal; just note down what you consume, to be settled at the end of your stay. If you’re unsure where to eat in the evening, the friendly, English-speaking reception staff will lead you in the right direction. And after a fun-filled night on the tiles, a full breakfast buffet is laid out each morning in the charming tree-lined breakfast room. Feeling weary? Why not order breakfast in bed? So, whether it’s business, pleasure or shopping that brings you to Paris, Le Marianne will certainly leave you with a lasting impression. But, before you check out, be sure to take full advantage of the hotel’s emerald Hammam!

If you have any concerns about travelling to Paris, please visit To advertise call 01953 456789




Lancaster Terrace, London W2 2TY. Tel: 020 7551 6000. Expect to pay from around £160 per room per night.

Whitehall Place, London SW1A 2BD. Tel: 020 7551 6000. Expect to pay from around £425 per room per night.


lessed with one of the best postcodes in the capital, this striking four-star hotel enjoys a privileged position in central London, close to the shopping districts of Oxford Street and Bond Street, as well as the theatres, museums, and overlooking the famous green parkland of Hyde Park. Offering world-class hospitality in an unbeatable location, there’s a choice of accommodation options to suit every traveller, from the superior, deluxe, executive and executive clubs rooms, to the more opulent embassy and royal suites, each commanding unrivalled panoramic views across the city skyline. Stylishly decorated with sophisticated luxury in mind, the 416 elegant guest rooms provide a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle, each with flat-screen television, free Wi-Fi, movies on demand, minibar, tea and coffee making facilities, en suite bathroom, robes and a host of indulgent toiletries. So, why not make the most of your room by cosying up in front of your favourite film? Room service anyone? The hotel has a choice of two lovely restaurants, both with two AA rosette awards. The first, Island Grill, serves contemporary British fare with a focus on seasonal, local ingredients in a spacious, split-level dining room, while Nipa Thai is a beautifully authentic Thai restaurant, renowned as one of the city’s top spots for traditional Thai food. Featuring a teak panelled interior with exquisite furnishings and ornate decorations crafted in Thailand, the delightful décor perfectly complements the delicious cuisine, which combines a mix of dishes prepared by head chef Sanguan Parr and her dedicated all-female kitchen team. The Lounge Bar on the first floor is the ideal place to meet for coffee, cocktails, or afternoon tea. Executive chef Ben Purton has created a fun twist on this British tradition with his nostalgic candy-inspired sweet treats including white chocolate truffle and raspberry lollipops with popping candy, mini pistachio macaroons, and caramel and hazelnut tranche. The first hotel to cultivate honey from its beehives on the roof, the Lancaster is a champion of the humble honey bee (and the honey is some of the best you will ever taste!). And if you can’t resist squeezing in a quick work-out, the fullyequipped gym is open 24 hours a day, so don’t forget your trainers!


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anked amongst London’s finest five-star hotels, Corinthia is an intricately restored grand Victorian hotel with a 21st century vibe, thanks to its blend of contemporary art and craftsmanship. Steeped in history, the building dates from 1885, starting life as the prestigious Hôtel Métropole before it was taken over by the Ministry of Defence. Having been returned to its former glory, the hotel remains as popular today as it was in its heyday, now housing an inner foyer and garden, two restaurants, a stunning spa, a cocktail bar, as well as a lavish ballroom. There are 294 individually appointed guest rooms, including 45 gorgeous suites. Situated in the very heart of London, a stone’s throw from the River Thames, London Eye and Trafalgar Square, guests can admire some of London’s most recognised landmarks from the comfort of their own room or suite. The highest quality materials and attention to detail ensure an impressive interior, complete with ‘wow’ factor bathrooms comprising double basins and oversized power showers, for the ultimate in luxury hotel design. Choose from two top-class restaurants... Northall showcases British cuisine with an emphasis on great seasonal produce from artisan suppliers, while Italian-themed Massimo Restaurant offers formal dining in a welcoming, laidback environment, with a sommelier on hand to help you select the perfect wine to enhance each course. If you’d like to unwind with a post-dinner drink, the new Garden Lounge is just the place. An alfresco feel with two fireplaces at either end, it’s an intimate setting for refreshments, with chic circular tables, comfortable chairs and umbrellas overhead. Or, perhaps you’d prefer musically-inspired Bassoon bar... Sip a carefully-concocted cocktail while listening to live music from the seven-metre-long piano. The jewel in Corinthia’s crown, however, has to be the new-generation ESPA Life spa, which is spread across four floors. Ideal for those seeking an exclusive haven dedicated to relaxation, health and fitness, there’s a wide repertoire of treatments available to try in one of the 17 oval treatment pods, from an age-defying facial to a full-body massage. The amazing thermal floor, complete with swimming pool, vitality pool, glass amphitheatre sauna, steam room, ice fountain, private sleep pods and heated marble loungers, is out of this world! Promoting wellness inside and out, a visit to Corinthia is guaranteed to leave feeling rejuvenated.

at the popular Lighthouse Inn in Walcott. Whether looking to spend time with family and friends or recharging those batteries, you can do as much or as little as you wish... Play outdoor chess in the garden, fire up the barbecue (weather permitting, of course!), or hit the beach (there’s a track leading to the sand, just 500 yards from your cottage door). And with well-behaved dogs permitted, you can even bring along your four-legged friend.

PILGRIMS HOLIDAY COTTAGES Walcott Road, Bacton, Norwich NR12 0EY. Tel: 01603 871872. Expect to pay from around £460 per cottage per week (off-peak).


acton is a picturesque coastal village in North-East Norfolk, nestling between Cromer and Great Yarmouth, in a quiet area that boasts fantastic beach walks and two welcoming pubs on the doorstep. Home to Pilgrims Holiday Cottages, there are four unique cottages in total, providing cosy accommodation set in the grounds of Grade II listed Pilgrims House. A high quality conversion of four stables and a feed barn, each of the cottages has the original beams intact, terracotta tile floors, a fireplace and equestrian memorabilia, giving a nod to their interesting history.

Pilgrims Barn is perhaps the pièce de résistance of the complex. Built in the 16th century as a storage barn to Bromholm Priory, it has been remarkably transformed into a private indoor swimming pool, which visitors are free to use during their stay. Built in flint interspersed with soft Norfolk red bricks and a thatched Norfolk reed roof, the pool itself is made from Italian stone tiles – a truly unique place to take a few laps. What’s more, there’s even a sauna, shower area and a dedicated sound system... Enjoy some background music as you swim a few lengths of the pool.

Bed linen and towels are provided, as well as games, DVDs and a well-stocked welcome pack to make sure you feel right at home. The kitchens are fully equipped for cooking up a feast, or if you’d prefer to dine out, there’s an exclusive £5 guest voucher, which can be used

If you have the children in tow, head for the games room. The air hockey table doubles as a pool table, while the table football and multi-gym provide further entertainment for all the family. A tranquil haven in which to get away from it all, a stay at Pilgrims is not complete without a wander around the pretty, well-kept gardens. So, whether you’ve enjoyed a busy, action-packed trip or a quiet, leisurely break, even just a few nights spent in this peaceful North Norfolk location will leave you feeling like you’ve enjoyed a well-earned rest.

Your North Norfolk Solicitors We wish you all a Happy Christmas and a prosperous New Year


Wills Probate & Trusts

Divorce & Family Issues

Moving House

Dispute Resolution


Fakenham 01328 863131 Holt 01263 712023 Visit Email To advertise call 01953 456789




Becksondergaard scarf, price on request, at Nelle in Thornham and Holt

To advertise call 01953 456789

Statement-making accessories are guaranteed to enhance your winter wardrobe.



NandWillow dress, £39.99, at Blossom & Green in Aylsham

The Myrine collection is available from Nicholsons in Holt


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or added impact, opt for chic accessories that will transform even the most subtle of ensembles. Think big hats, chunky knits and attention-grabbing jewellery. And with the Christmas party season in full swing, now’s the time to experiment with special finishing touches that promise to turn heads. Go on, be inspired!

Patterned scarf – go for a stripe or tartan print to update a plain cardigan and jeans. Oversized bag – a dramatic leather handbag will make a real statement, as well as housing all your winter essentials. Sparkly jewellery – a silver sequined necklace will beautifully complement that little black dress. High heels – one way to instantly add glamour to festive partywear. Floppy hat – the Great Gatsby look is still on trend this Christmas. Classic belt – emphasise a small waist by drawing the eye away from a big bottom or boobs, and towards the belted area.

So, with your accessories sorted, you’ll feel like your old closet has been given a sparkling revamp!

Picadilly pink dress, price on request, at Allez Chic in Castle Rising

To advertise call 01953 456789




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Written by John Bultitude

From a starring role in an iconic Channel Four soap via the West End to a new reality TV series, John Bultitude chats to Jennifer Ellison, one of the busiest women in showbusiness.


reparing to add another job to her list by playing the evil Queen Evilynne in Norwich this Christmas, Jennifer Ellison loves taking to the stage, and can’t wait to entertain thousands over the festive season. She is one of those people who exudes energy, and as she arrives in Norwich for a very busy day of interviews and photoshoots, there is no dimming of her sunny smile or charm. She plans to be a sassy and stylish wicked Queen Evilynne in Snow White and is looking forward to treading the boards. She said, “I am really excited. I have played the Wicked Queen in panto before and I absolutely loved it. The reaction of children when you come on stage and when Snow White bites the apple is just incredible.” It will also mark her debut on stage at Norwich, although she knows the city having rehearsed here for a UK tour of Calendar Girls. But, her strong West End and touring theatre pedigree is a world away from her early years. As a child, dancing was her passion and she became a world champion in both ballet and modern dance at a very young age. Her prowess meant she acquired an agent and, at the age of 12, managed to get an audition for the hit soap Brookside, filmed in her native Merseyside. Jennifer admits being part of the series helped shape her career. She said, “It was amazing to grow up on screen, and to be part of a family unit. I am where I am today thanks to Brookside. I worked with some great actors and actresses. Many of them have gone on to do great things like Ricky Tomlinson, Anna Friel and Sue Johnston.” From there, the acting roles came in thick and fast. At the age of 20, she got the lead role of To advertise call 01953 456789

Roxie Hart in Chicago, which she revisited several times, as well as reprising the role on a UK tour. Jennifer said, “I loved every minute of it. To be able to say you have done Roxie Hart is fantastic.”

look after! When asked if they will follow her into the world of theatre, Jennifer said, “I think the eldest may do. He is quite theatrical and dramatic. But the younger two are more likely to go down the sports route.”

In addition, she has taken on lead roles in two other iconic productions, Legally Blonde and Singin’ In The Rain, as well as appearing in the movie version of Phantom Of The Opera. She added, “I have been very fortunate. Theatre has been my main love. To have that instant response from the audience is wonderful. I have been very lucky to play leading ladies in four West End shows.”

With the chance to see mum in action in this year’s Norwich Theatre Royal pantomime, Jennifer laughed, “The kids love it. Last time I did panto, my middle son was a bit young, but my eldest got really involved. The great thing about the pantomime is that everyone can enjoy it, and all the family can come along.”

Although stage work has been a strong focus for Jennifer, she is no stranger to TV, appearing in both Dancing On Ice and Hell’s Kitchen. But, was Jennifer scared about the legendary rages of Hell’s Kitchen host Gordon Ramsay? She answered, “When I did ballet, I was taught by Russian ballet teachers and they were a lot scarier than Gordon. It was a case of if you did the work and worked hard, he rewarded you. Others weren’t doing that and that’s why he screamed at them.”

Snow White is at Norwich Theatre Royal from Thursday 15th December to Sunday 17th January. For further information, call the box office on 01603 630000 or visit

It is that strong grounding as a child that inspired her to equip the next generation of performers with the skills they need to succeed by setting up Jelli Studios in Liverpool. And being based in Merseyside was really important to Jennifer. She added, “There are a lot of opportunities for people down south, especially in London, and I wanted to create a college that could rival the London colleges.” Juggling her new venture with her latest reality TV show Dance Mums, which sees young performers show off their skills aided and abetted by their mothers, as well as fitting in panto rehearsals, as if that isn’t enough, Jennifer has three young sons under the age of 6 to

Amie Howes as Snow White and Bruce Gaham as Igor The Henchman



GREAT READS FOR CHRISTMAS Written by Steve Browning @returningperson

Steve Browning says there really is nothing quite so good as receiving a surprise book present at Christmas. Here are a few ideas.

agency. The stories are often slight – Sherlock Holmes Mma Ramotswe is not – but the charm of the writing will melt even the most flint-like of hearts, while the rest of the population should have a hanky at the ready, you know, just in case... This is a collection of superb photographs from the very talented Norfolk photographer Daniel Tink, along with interesting captions. It is a lovely little gem of a book and a perfect stocking filler at only £4.99. It is published by PIXZ books and is in all good bookshops as well as online.

This recommendation could have really been almost anything from this fine novelist who has the knack of making reading easy – it seems that you just have to open the page and the book starts to dance in your imagination. It really is art disguising art, and you have to be at the top of your game to write anything remotely as effortlessly charming as this. This book, of course, features the adventures of the remarkable Mma Ramotswe and her team at Botswana’s only ladies’ detective


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The Walking Worried; A Young Man’s Journey with OCD by Aron Bennett, 29, from Thorpe Hamlet, Norwich. Aron wanted to set the record straight with regards to his own OCD and this memoire is his attempt at doing just that. Aron suffers with a variation of OCD known as ‘moral scrupulosity’ which is, in essence, a fear of moral or ethical failure and is a form scarcely covered in the existing literature. Like those who wash excessively or check the locks repeatedly, Aron fears the consequences of his burdensome thoughts; of being a ‘bad person’. This is a candid and moving story, and Aron is currently writing a follow-up. It is available at £10 from Amazon and other online sellers.

I have to admit a small amount of prejudice, as Jack Holroyd is my own commissioning editor at Pen and Sword Books. It is pretty amazing, though, featuring a rumbustious story and great research. An unusual feature is a series of coloured photographs of some of the settings in the book as they are today. It is quite a substantial book, and you really need to ‘clear the decks’ for a few days to do it justice – do the shopping, make the tea, put the cat out and plump up the cushions, then take a leap into another world. It is priced at £19.99 and is available pretty much everywhere and online.

Many people will know Norwich born-and-bred historian, speaker and chorister, David Berwick. He has also written ‘Beating the Bounds in Georgian Norwich’, a wonderful evocation of this once universal ritual. Here he takes a detailed look at one of our most remarkable but almost forgotten – until now – bishops. To say he had an interesting life is a total understatement. With colour plates and impressive research, this book will transport you back in time and you will never look

at certain parts of the city in the same way again. £8.50 from Amazon online.

Anthony Horowitz will be familiar to many as the writer of many Midsomer Murder episodes and a substantial portion of Foyle’s

War. He has also written a James Bond novel called ‘Trigger Mortis’ and the Alex Rider ‘Stormbreaker’ series. All are wholeheartedly recommended, but I chose this one – I am currently half way through the fantastic follow-up, ‘Moriarty’ – as I have more than a soft spot for Sherlock Holmes. There are many people who write Sherlock Holmes adventures, including me, and then there are just one or two – whisper it quietly so as not to upset any Sherlockian who may be reading – who seem to me to be even better at it than Sir Arthur Conan Doyle himself. It is to do with an engaging, comfortable tone, obvious love for the original canon, deftness of touch in storytelling and an understanding of what the reader wants. Elementary it isn’t and, indeed, this tale is darker than any from Sir Arthur, but here we have a master of his craft in full flow.


NORWICH IN THE 1970S By Pete Goodrum (Amberley Publishing)


or some, the 1970s meant punk rock and political unrest. For others, it was a time of Abba and affluence. The decade’s dual identity was as striking in Norwich as it was nationally. While once familiar streets were demolished, new buildings sprang up. Different brand names appeared in the city centre and, with them, came a new era of shopping and eating out. This book is a look over the shoulder to the steak houses and night clubs, the fashions and trends that defined the decade. Following his incredibly popular Norwich In The 1950s and Norwich In The 1960s, Pete Goodrum’s look at the 1970s shines a light on another decade in the city’s history.

Drawing on vintage advertising and many never-before-published images, this book is a fascinating glimpse, and reminder of how we lived in Norwich, in the 1970s.

Due for release January 2016.


any readers will be interested in stories about Norwich and Norfolk in the Great War. Well, the book of which they form a part now has a release date January 31st 2016. It is available for pre-order online from Waterstones, Foyles, Blackwells and Amazon, or direct from the publishers. Any bookshop can also obtain it for you. It is priced at £9.99. Based very largely on original material of the day, much of it never before released in book form, it is illustrated with many fascinating

photographs of the Fine City and its inhabitants who lived through the war. Norwich was the centre for the production of the perfect marching boot, the Sopwith Camel aircraft and Caley’s Marching Chocolate amongst many other things at this pivotal time in history. The book also looks at everyday life year on year, and how Norwich was changed by the demands of war. It concludes with a ‘Great War Walk’ around the centre of the city, taking in many of the places discussed in the book. The cover shows men enthusiastically leaving for war by train from Thorpe Station in 1914.




Norfolk On My Mind has teamed up with Godwick Turkeys to offer one lucky reader the chance to win a Norfolk Bronze free range turkey worth around £70.


family-run Norfolk business, specialising in producing quality, free range turkeys for Christmas, the Garner family has been farming at Godwick Hall near Fakenham for almost 80 years. With the aim of supplying the finest meat for your festive dinner table, Godwick Turkeys are fed on a natural diet of homegrown cereals and vegetable protein sources, free from additives, together with the highest welfare standards, enabling them to reach full maturity. They are reared for around seven months in the lead up to Christmas, roaming free on the farm’s large, clover-rich paddocks.

An email containing full tracking information will be sent ahead of delivery with an arrival time for your reference. Or, if you live locally, why not collect direct from the farm? Godwick Turkeys is at Godwick Hall Farm, Godwick, Tittleshall, King’s Lynn, Norfolk PE32 2RJ, between Fakenham, Swaffham and Dereham.

To find out more about Godwick Turkeys, call 01328 700540 or visit

ENTER THIS COMPETITION To enter, send your name, address and daytime telephone number on a postcard to:

Dry-plucked by hand and game hung for 14 days in the traditional way to achieve a superior taste and succulent meat, Godwick Turkeys are just the way that turkey should be enjoyed. Farm fresh and oven ready, you can even order your free range turkey for home delivery throughout the UK. Delivered to you in time for Christmas Day, each turkey is beautifully presented in a specially designed insulated container, guaranteed to keep it at fridge temperature during transportation. To advertise call 01953 456789

Norfolk On My Mind, Queens House, Queens Square, Attleborough, Norfolk NR17 2AE or email your details to: Competition rules: 1) One winner will receive a Norfolk Bronze free range turkey. The Winner will be notified after the closing date of Friday 18th December 2015 2) There is no cash alternative, non transferable or refundable 3) Open to residents in the UK aged 18 or over 4) Only one entry per person 5) The Editor’s decision is final 6) Winners are selected at random from entries received before the competition closes 7) Correspondence may be entered into unless marked ‘no offers’.



CHRISTMAS SPECTACULAR John Cushing, producer and director at Thursford, takes us backstage at this year’s extravaganza.

What can audiences expect from Thursford’s Christmas Spectacular? A. We will take our audience on a journey of music, singing, dancing, sound and colour, which they never dreamt possible. I struggle to pick a highlight of the show. I love it all the same. Q. When do rehearsals start for all the cast? A. Rehearsals start at the beginning of October on site, but there is preparation before that for the musical director, working with the orchestra and the singers, in London. Q. How long does it take to produce the show? A. I start work in January and it takes me right through the year. I end one show and start another. Q. How many people are involved in the production? A. There are 40 people behind the scenes including the choreographer, casting director, sound team, lighting team, musical director,


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“I START WORK IN JANUARY AND IT TAKES ME RIGHT THROUGH THE YEAR. I END ONE SHOW AND START ANOTHER” conductor, production manager, music orchestrator, costume designer, and operations and events manager. We then have 130 cast members on stage. Q. What do you think is the appeal of the Christmas Spectacular? A. It’s the country’s largest Christmas Spectacular in the magical surroundings of mechanical organs and fairground carousels, with performers from the West End, singing

an eclectic mix of seasoned and year-round favourites, traditional songs and current pop hits. It’s a non-stop celebration of the festive season. Q. How many people come to see the show each year? A. Around 120,000. A large majority come from outside the area but many are from within the county of Norfolk. Q. What do you love about Christmas here in Norfolk? A. Christmas Eve at home with all the family; fires roaring, carols playing, and the smell of turkey in the oven. For further information on Thursford, call 01328 878477 or visit

Norfolk on My Mind - December 2015  

Issue 50 of Norfolk on My Mind Magazine for North Norfolk

Norfolk on My Mind - December 2015  

Issue 50 of Norfolk on My Mind Magazine for North Norfolk