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Delivered to: Bridgtown, Broomhill, Cannock, Cannock East, Cannock North, Cannock South, Cannock West, Chadsmoor, Cheslyn Hay, Four Crosses, Hatherton, Hawks Green, Norton Canes, Wedges Mills, Wimblebury, Hednesford, Huntington, Littleworth.

Great Prize to be won inside this issue: Amerton Farm and Craft Centre, Family day out with much more!

May/June 2012

Inside this first issue: Local features including interview with County Councillor Matthew Ellis, Staffordshire Council Fostering, Recipe of the month, Fashion, Puzzles, Eating out review, Fire Fighters Charity, Local entertainment and lots more! 01

| MAY/JUNE STAFFORDSHIRELocal OUTLOOK 2012 magazine delivered

to 20,000 selected homes and businesses*

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Phone: 01902 393393 Outlook when calling.



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A Message from the E Hello readers, Welcome to the May/June edition of the brand new Staffordshire Outlook magazine. Staffordshire Outlook will be delivered every month alternating between two areas. This month being the Cannock edition and next month we will deliver to Stafford. We hope you enjoy reading the magazine with lots of interesting articles, both local and general. Don’t forget to enter our Amerton Farm competition with the winner being published in the next Cannock edition of the magazine, good luck. If you belong to a local group or charity and would like forthcoming events published in this magazine please send an email to: If you are a business owner and would like to be featured in Staffordshire Outlook then please contact us on the details below.

Staffordshire Outlook Magazine Ltd 30 Swinburne Close, Sutton Heights, Telford TF7 4PZ Tel: 01952 321334 Staffordshire Outlook Magazine is published by Staffordshire Outlook Magazine Limited Advertising enquiries Sharon Caldwell – Sales Manager Email: Editorial/What’s on information Mal Caldwell – Editor Email: Cover shot: Cannock Chase, Courtesy of Ron Evans @ Ron Evans Photography Magazine design:

We would like to thank all of the businesses for supporting this magazine and hope that our readers will use these reputable companies when the need arises. All that’s left to do is relax and enjoy your new local magazine. Enjoy your read…


Contents Shugborough Estate TA Henn - The Diamond Jubilee Hallmark Making Memories - Foster a child Popping out for an Indian Eating out review at The Kings Repose Recipe of the month Amerton Farm & Craft Centre Competition South Staffs Council Swim for Free Don’t move improve Fireside Factory Plant of the month Poppy Puzzles Macmillan Cancer County Councillor Matthew Ellis Women’s Fashion Beauty Lily’s of Shifnal Northern Gas Guildhall Shopping Centre Jubilee Horoscopes Total Glass Fittings Meet Hornswaggle A name to look out for Louis Coupe Fire Fighters Charity Antiques Extravaganza A new samurai - Subaru WRX STi Volvo XC90 Useful Numbers Answers to puzzles Tom`s Tip of the month

4 6 8 11 12/13 14 16/17 18 20 21 23 25 26 27 28 32 33 34/35 36 37 38 40 41 42 44 46/47 48 49 49 50

We gratefully acknowledge the support of businesses whose adverts appear in Staffordshire Outlook magazine and whilst every care is taken to ensure accuracy, the publishers cannot accept responsibility for loss, damage or omission caused by error in the printing of an advert or editorial. All artwork is accepted on strict condition that permission has been given for use in this publication. Adverts are accepted on the understanding that descriptions of goods and services are fair and accurate. Staffordshire Outlook magazine does not officially endorse any advertising material included within this publication. All rights reserved. No part of this publication maybe reproduced, stored in any retrieval system of transmitted in any form – electronic, mechanical, photo copying or otherwise – without the prior consent of Staffordshire Outlook magazine.*total distribution 20,000 copies across two months.



Shugborough Estate

Journey through the historic estate of Shugborough and discover a bygone era of costumed living history characters bringing the past to life. Shugborough, the UK’s only Complete Working Historic Estate, is no ordinary stately home but a living, working experience of life as it was 200 years ago. Located on the fringes of Cannock Chase, the estate is set in 900 acres of stunning parkland and riverside gardens with elegant mansion house, working Victorian servants’ quarters,

Georgian farm and mill and restored walled garden. In addition, the attraction also features a land train ride, play park, rare breed animals, restaurant and tea rooms, gift shop, craft workshops, ice cream kiosks and old fashioned sweet shop. A wide variety of events and activities take place throughout the year from themed weekend to large scale picnic concerts.

The estate is open daily from March 16 until October 28 from 11am until 5pm. May Not to be missed in the Gardens. The Bluebell Display, admire one of the finest displays of English bluebells in the area.

Sat 12 – Sun 13 May - Treasure Days A special weekend to admire some of Shugborough’s most special hidden treasures. A unique opportunity to see precious artefacts from the stores put on display, glimpse into hidden cabinets and find out more about conservation on the estate.



Monday 7th May – May Day Victorian games and Green Man Morris men will be performing. Visit the website at and don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Call 0845 459 8900 for discounted advance tickets and information.

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The Diamond Jubilee Hallmark (1952 – 2012)

In the UK, precious metal items such as jewellery and silverware are hallmarked by law with a view to provide a quality control of the goods manufactured. This is the oldest form of consumer protection and has been going on for over 700 years. Generally, all items hallmarked in the UK contain at least two stamps: one for the metal quality, and one for the Assay Office in charge of the hallmarking process. However, this year in honour of the Queen Jubilee the Assay Offices have created a special Diamond Jubilee hallmark symbolised by a young Queen Elizabeth wearing an oversized crown in a diamond shaped surround. The mark can be struck on gold, silver, platinum or palladium and will be available until October 2012.

If you were thinking in collecting a piece of silverware then 2012 would be a perfect year to consider it in commemoration of the 60th year of HM Queen Elizabeth’s reign. It is likely to become highly collectable in the years to come with her Majesty the Queen, being the only monarch in the history of Britain to celebrate such an occasion; the other being the Queen Victoria. Silver gift items with the Diamond Jubilee hallmark are available at T.A. Henn, 38-41 Princess Street, Wolverhampton. For specific requests, please feel free to contact us as we are always happy to help. For further information on hallmarking you can check the Assay Office website or contact T.A. Henn directly on 01902 429 409.

Clogau - The Gold of Royalty Within every piece of Clogau jewellery is a touch of rare Welsh gold from the Clogau St. David’s Gold mine in Bontdu. The very same Welsh gold found in the Clogau jewellery has been used to create generations of Royal Family wedding rings. This tradition goes on since 1923 and most recently, the Duchess of Cambridge’s wedding ring was crafted from pure Welsh gold gifted to Prince William by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

“Diamond Jubilee hallmark included on all items”

Silver & Diamonds £199

Gold & Diamonds £840

Royal Jubilee Pendants

In commemoration of 60th anniversary of the Queen Elizabeth II to the throne, Clogau designed a Royal Jubilee collection inspired by the Crown Regalia especially created for 2012.

T.A. Henn 38 – 41 Princess Street Wolverhampton WV1 1HD 06


Silver Pendant £109

Silver & Diamonds £189

Swan Royal Pendants

Mute Swans, as a tradition are protected and owned by the Her Majesty the Queen. Some can be seen in the gardens at Hampton Court Palace.

T.A. Henn has it all…

Tel: 01902 428486 Find us on Facebook

Call in at our shop: 38 - 41 Princess Street, Wolverhampton WV1 1HD 'Scan to find ebook' Or contact us on: 01902 429409 us on fac or 01952 321334 | WWW.STAFFORDSHIREOUTLOOK.CO.UK


Making Memories

Can you help a Staffordshire child make memories? There are many children, in Staffordshire and beyond, that need a second chance to live in a happy and secure home. Staffordshire County Council needs to recruit at least 65 new foster carers over the next three years to make sure that the children placed in the local authority’s care have the best start and life, and go on to reach their potential. The county council’s Fostering Service offers unrivalled training and access to nationally recognised qualifications, support and social activities for the whole family, a professional fee, and an inflation busting allowance to help support the foster child. “Ask any of our foster carers and they’ll tell you that fostering is very rewarding and satisfying,” said Cabinet Member for Children’s Wellbeing, Mike Lawrence. “Many even say that it’s the best move they’ve ever made for their family, career and themselves.

And for the child it’s giving them a secure and happy home, the result of which could be better grades at school, seeing them open up to new experiences or just seeing them smile. Fostering for the county council means that you’re more likely to be able to care for a child sooner than if you foster through an Independent Fostering Agency. We approach our own approved carers first, before talking to other agencies, because we have that personal relationship with the people that we have trained to be the best they can be. We’re also delighted that we’ve been able to increase the allowances that we pay to foster carers to help support the children. We value our foster carers and want to give them every possible support.” Fostering with the county council means that you’ll be supported every step of the way. The Fostering Service has been officially recognised by Ofsted

as an ‘Outstanding’ service because of the level of support and training provided to foster carers and their families. The Molyneux family from Cannock have been fostering for a number of years and have never looked back. “The county council has been excellent, and we’re finding fostering a great personal experience. It’s helping us to grow ourselves, as well as obviously giving the children a happy home; something that everyone has a right to, but that most of us take for granted.” Although some people want to foster on a long term basis, there are many different ways to foster a child that can fit with a busy lifestyle. Short-term care, fostering at weekends and giving children with disabilities a break, are all possible. Foster carers don’t need formal qualifications; just a willingness to share their home and their love with a child in need.

Ring 0800 169 2061 or go to to find out more! 08


r u o y e Us

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Fo s t e r in g m e a n s f a m il y

e ir h s d r o f f a t S Can you help a ies? r o m e m e k a m child


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Scan this with your Smartphone to find out why you should foster for Staffordshire



,000 readers 0 2 r e v o h c a re to e k li Would you ck area? o n n a C d n a rd o ff ta S in the

Advertise your restaurant in Staffordshire Outlook Magazine Contact Sharon on 01952 321334 10



Popping Out For An In

Is one of the more popular gastronomic activities these days, whether it’s to bring home a delicious take-away, or to sit in comfortable splendour in an Indian restaurant that seems to have been designed for the presence of royalty. Somehow the ambience of an Indian restaurant oozes comfort and pleasure, which is the object of the exercise. Their food after all is considered an almost sacred rite to the inhabitants of the SubContinent and they go to great lengths to ensure the surroundings in which it is eaten, reflect this. The mere thought of a curry is almost guaranteed to set the oral juices running. There is very little in any European cuisine that is quite so fragrant which is why it makes such a special eating occasion. Mind you, the curries we eat here in the UK are a far cry from those enjoyed in their country of origin. An amazing number are adaptations or pure inventions designed for the British taste, which is not to say they are not enjoyed equally by expatriots of the Sub-Continent.

Curries range in ‘spiciness’ from mild to very hot on the subject of ‘hot’ however, chillies usually play a large part in the flavouring of most curries. And interestingly it was the British who introduced them to India. They are after all, native to the South American Continent. Before their advent, black pepper was the warming ingredient in Indian food.

So what are the favourite Indian meals ordered today? Chicken Tikka Masala probably tops the list. It is in fact an invention by an Indian chef whose customers found Tandoori food to be rather on the dry side. So, he invented a tangy sauce and this favourite dish was born. The Tandoori dishes are probably the next most popular. They are barbecued over fire or charcoal and are a form of cooking originating in the Punjab region.

Vindaloo is probably the next most well-known. It originates in Goa from a dish called Vihna d’Alho words meaning wine and garlic. It is unlikely an inhabitant of Goa would recognise the Anglicised dish though however. The Anglicised version usually contains potato though the garlic remains a prominent ingredient. Order a Balti dish in the knowledge it is named mainly after the utensil it is cooked in, something like a wok. Other dishes that have achieved great popularity include Rogan-Josh and Bhuna, highly spiced, savoury dishes that have started to wean diners away from the pale Kormas and often very hot Madras. Eating out should always be something of an occasion. The food has to be special. The surroundings must be special and the service must be extra special. You’ll find some great Indian restaurants in Cannock and the surrounding areas, so give them a try!

There are some surprising facts about UK Indian food. For a start, nearly three million customers are entertained in Indian restaurants every week. This represents nearly two-thirds of all meals eaten out in the UK. Indian food is very big business indeed. 01952 321334 | WWW.STAFFORDSHIREOUTLOOK.CO.UK


oksey Review by Michelle Co se o p e R s g in K The

The Kings Repose is a well-established, fully licensed Indian restaurant and takeaway which has been serving excellent food for 16 years and is situated in a countryside location in Featherstone near Wolverhampton. At the helm since 1996, hosts Misbah and Lee successfully brought it to a standard that won ‘ Rate My Place’ which is a prestigious five star award, awarded by the local council for the outstanding achievement and contribution to the pursuit of excellent food and service which monitors food hygiene and general standards.

The restaurant is split into two sections, downstairs being the bar area with a great selection of drinks including my favourite, Cobra being served on draught.

Upon entering the free, fully secure car park, customers dining at The Kings Repose are welcomed by the beautiful establishment overlooking the gardens. My companion and I were greeted on this evening by Monseur the Restaurant Manager who took ours drinks order and showed us to a table in the bar area. 12


We were given the menu to look through by a member of the pleasant and very helpful waiting staff who also showed us the dishes on the specials board, he also explained that if there was anything that was not showing on the menu that the chef would be happy to make for us. Nothing was too much trouble! The menu – with main course prices from just £6.95 to £12.95 – with

all dishes having its own individual flavours and aromas from the herbs and spices especially prepared by the master chef Misbah.

We were more than ready to try our mains now as the starters were so tasty and when our main course was presented we were not disappointed.

After looking through all of the mouth-watering dishes I opted for the vegetable samosa, poppadum’s and dips with my companion choosing the king prawn with garlic and butter. For our main dishes I ordered the chicken jalfrezi and pilau rice with my partner opting for the chicken tikka masala with a peshwari nan.

The portions were generous and the taste and flavours were more than perfect and I can understand why so

many customers return to The Kings Repose and describe it a culinary experience of a lifetime. My partner and I were too full for desert on this occasion so decided on coffees in the bar but we have both said that we will be returning as soon as possible.

The Kings Repose New Road,Featherstone, Nr Wolverhampton WV10 7NW Telephone: 01902 307846 Website: Opening times: 7 days a week 5:30pm – Midnight

Once we had ordered we were shown to our table in the restaurant upstairs with the setting of a converted barn and our table from the window overlooking the beautiful gardens and surroundings. The atmosphere in the restaurant was very calming with the tables well spaced and a relaxed feel. Both starters arrived and lived up to the expectations, being each in its own way – simply delicious.

Open from 5.30pm - Midnight (7days a week)

Indian Cuisine The only indian restaurant to have been awarded a 5 star award from rate my place for Kitchen Hygiene. Misbah the master chef can cook anything to suit customers requirements. All of the superb mouthwatering dishes being freshly prepared at the time of ordering, using only the finest produce.

Described by many customers as a culinary experience of a lifetime.

New Road Featherstone Nr. Wolverhampton WV10 7NW

01902 307846 01902 738299 Eat in or take away



Serves 2 Ready in 45mins

Recipe provided by Chef Jon Young The Barnt Green Inn, Kendal End Road Rednal, Birmingham B45 8PZ 0121 445 4949

Recipe of the Month Pan Fried Duck Breast with Potato Fondant with Mange Tout and a Pomegranate and Lemon Jus INGREDIENTS 2 Duck Breasts, scored 75g butter 2 medium potatoes 125ml chicken stock Salt and Pepper Olive oil 1 small Onion 1 cup pomegranate juice and seeds 1 lemon 150g mange-tout, trimmed

METHOD 1. Lightly score the skin of the duck breasts ensuring only the fat is scored- not the flesh, season accordingly. Heat a large frying pan, add a drizzle of oil and turn to a medium heat, place the duck skin-side down in the pan , continue to cook for 15-20 mins, (depending on the size of the duck breast) or until skin is brown and crisp. 14

2. Peel the potatoes and cut into barrel-shapes, in a sauce pan add the butter over a medium heat, when the butter is beginning to foam add the potatoes and shallow fry for 5-6 minutes until golden –brown, try not to move the potatoes when they are cooking. 3. Flip the potatoes and cook for a further 5-6 minutes or until goldenbrown on both sides, add the stock (75ml), caution needed as the hot butter will splutter when it comes into contact with the stock, leave fondants to slimmer in the stock and season accordingly. Cover the saucepan with its lid and turn down the heat. When the potatoes are tender they are ready. 4. To make pomegranate and lemon jus- warm some oil in a saucepan on a medium heat. Add diced onion and cook until soft and caramelised (approx. 8-10 minutes). Pour in the stock (50ml),


add pomegranate juice, seeds and lemon zest, Cook until reduced and has syrup like texture. 5. When the duck is golden and crisp on the Skin side turn it over and continue to cook for a further 3-5 mins until brown, turn off the heat. The meat at this stage should be pink in the middle, cook for a further few minutes if you require your duck breasts well done. Leave in the pan to rest. 6. Cook mange tout for 2 mins in boiling water, remove and dry. Stir-fry for 3 minutes in a frying pan with a touch of butter and seasoning. 7. Serving- Remove fondant from saucepan and place on a plate, add cooked mange tout on top, remove duck from pan and slice diagonally, place next to fondant. Finally, drizzle with Pomegranate and lemon jus.

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Centre ft ra C & rm a F n o rt e Am .uk www.amer

Amerton Farm & Craft Centre is based on the main A518 between Stafford and Uttoxeter and is a lovely place to visit, with attractions for all the family to see and participate in. The various shops, businesses and Playbarn are all set in refurbished farm buildings and farm animals are kept in the original farmyard where visitors can feed and pet them. The Craft Centre has a wide range of products to enhance the home or give as a beautiful and unusual gift and they pride themselves on having very special gifts and cards that are not always available on the high street. Farmhouse fabrics can be found in the Craft Centre and quilting groups travel from far and wide to visit the site to purchase materials and fat quarters. When visiting the Cook Shop you will find kitchenware and pottery to suit everyone’s taste. Maxwell Williams, Queens, Churchill China, Portmerion, Ulster Weavers aprons and accessories are stocked and sold. 16

The Toy Shop and Nursery Corner are also situated in the Craft Centre and have a massive selection of good quality toys for all ages. If you are looking for that very special gift you need to look no further as they specialise in offering toys with a difference. The Nursery Corner has been specially designed to provide that unique present for a newborn baby. A welcoming Tea Room is particularly impressive with traditional furnishings, warming fires, excellent fayre and is licensed to sell alcohol with meals. Everyone is welcome to enjoy a farmhouse roast, the famous steak and kidney pie or their own choice of light snacks, meals and cream teas. Good food is very important at Amerton and the management believe that it is important to source and serve local produce wherever possible. Snacks and meals are available from the Old Dairy during the summer and at weekends, offering indoor and outdoor seating. In the Farm Shop a wide range of fine jams, preserves and pickles can be found along with locally produced wine and other beverages including Amerton Farm beer. There is a range of local cheeses, including specialist cheeses from around the country and local freerange eggs. Amerton Farm ice cream made from Amerton’s own recipe and using Jersey cream is sold


in cornets from the Farm Shop and in freezer packs to take home. The Windmill Playbarn is an indoor adventure play area, which is great fun for children. You will discover a tractor track, rope-bridge, climbing wall and barn on stilts connected with raised walkways. The Playbarn also has an extra large bouncy castle, which was designed especially for Amerton Farm. The Farmhouse provides first class Bed & Breakfast accommodation for people staying or visiting the area. Also based in the Farmhouse is a Complementary Therapy Centre. Essential oils for use in pregnancy and labour are also available from the centre. The Bakery was established in 1987 where fruit and meat pies, scones, bread, cakes, biscuits etc are made daily on the premises using fresh produce to traditional recipes. Celebration Cakes produce exquisitely decorated cakes for weddings, birthdays and special events. The Sweet Shop has delicious fudge made on the premises and sold alongside traditional sweets and handmade chocolates. The Garden Centre has just been re opened and has many varieties of plants, garden ornaments, garden tools and clothes.


Questions: What are the opening times of Amerton Farm and Craft Centre? What is the name of the Playbarn? Answers on email to: or on a postcode to: 30 Swinburne Close, Sutton Heights, Telford TF7 4PZ

Prize: Playbarn Two free entry vouchers and £10 voucher to be spent in the Playbarn on food and drink Cake Shop £10 voucher Jewellery Shop £10 voucher Bakery £10 voucher Pottery and Paint a Pot Studio £10 voucher Glass Studio £10 voucher British Wildlife Rescue Centre Free entry for 2 adults and 2 children Amerton Garden Centre £10 voucher Amerton Railway Free tickets for 2 adults and 2 children

The Studio Potter produces a wide range of hand thrown pots for gifts and domestic wares. There is a Paint a Pot Studio for both children and adults and includes hand and foot printing. The British Wildlife Rescue Centre provides care and rehabilitation to sick and injured wild animals and birds. You can take a pleasant stroll around their centre and see their wide variety of birds and animals.

affordable. She has also a beautiful display of wedding tiaras and hair pins, alongside wedding rings. There is also a display of more expensive pieces, which would suit all tastes. There is a Glass Studio on site, which boasts is a designer and restorer of stained glass. The stained glass is traditionally crafted to fit your requirements. Classes in stained glass are held for both the beginner and more advanced students and is a

great way to relax. Children can make mosaics or paint wind chimes for themselves or to give as a gift. Amerton Farm & Craft Centre is open every day of the year except Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day. The opening hours are 9.30am-5.00pm Christmas to Easter and 9.30am-5.30pm Easter to Christmas. General admission and car parking are free.

Amerton Railway is home to Stafford’s own steam engine “Isabel”. On Sundays between Easter and the end of October train rides can be taken using this old form of steam transport. In the summer on Saturdays there is a diesel train service. Julia Usher Jewellery specialises in being able to supply contemporary jewellery, which is distinctive but 01952 321334 | WWW.STAFFORDSHIREOUTLOOK.CO.UK


Read on to find out how to get your FREE SWIM PASS

old this year G r fo o g d n a e p a sh Get in with Energise Fitness South Staffordshire Council’s leisure centres offer a huge range of good quality fitness facilities at a reasonable cost – there’s loads on offer to cater for everyone’s needs and budget! There are four leisure centres which include Cheslyn Hay, Codsall, Penkridge and Wombourne, and the council also operates Baggeridge Country Park for those of you that prefer the outdoors.

There are so many reasons to come and visit the leisure centres… • There is loads on offer – fitness for the whole family

which you are only committed to for 3 months. Why not come and give it a try. Cut out the voucher below and present at our leisure centres to claim.


• The facilities are good quality

Voucher must be presented at reception. Contact the leisure centres for details on pool opening times.

• Everyone is welcome

Valid until 31st May 2012.

• And you can come as little or as much as you want because you don’t have to commit to anything! You can use the centres on a Pay As You Go basis or for those of you that intend to use the facilities more regularly, it’s worth having a peek at the memberships on offer as there’s a range of flexible packages, all of

Vouchers can be cancelled at any time. 1 voucher per person, per offer. Additional terms & conditions may apply. Name: Date: Leisure Centre:

The facilities on offer include fitness suites, exercise classes, toning suites, swimming, sportshall, squash and badminton courts, astro- turf pitches and much more; And for the kids there’s loads of sports courses including trampolining, athletics and gymnastics, plus swimming lessons,

a brand new interactive gym at Wombourne Leisure Centre, and a fantastic Sussed programme to entertain your children throughout the school holidays!

Please quote the magazine you obtained this voucher from:

For more information visit or call South Staffordshire Council on 01902 696505



Our facilities: ● Fitness suite ● Exericise classes

What we offer: ● ● ● ● ●

Friendly atmosphere Great facilities Free inductions and trials* Flexible memberships Corporate memberships available

● ●

Low cost memberships for those on a strict budget* Discounts for students

*Terms and conditions apply

● ● ● ●

Swimming pools Toning suites Sports halls Power plate

Cheslyn Hay Leisure Centre Codsall Leisure Centre Penkridge Leisure Centre Wombourne Leisure Centre

Our Venues: 01922 01902 01785 01902

417790 844032 714152 898202

Come and have a look around or why not give us a call to find out more: Leisure Services, South Staffordshire Council Telephone: 01902 696505 Email:



If you were thinking of moving house but have decided against it due to the downturn in the market you have two options: stay where you are and spruce your living space for your own benefit or start making improvements to add value to your house so that when you are ready to move your home should sell quicker and make more money.

Don’t Move, Improve If you have no intention of moving in the foreseeable future there are many lowcost ways to revitalise your home and give it a fresh, new look. To make your house look brand new start by de-cluttering and invest in some new storage units to hide everything else. Redecorating is the single most transforming enhancement you can make. Colour is an entirely personal choice and instantly transforms the atmosphere of a room. You may choose to have a signature wall decorated with a single bold colour or patterned wallpaper while keeping the rest of the room neutral. Rearranging your furniture is another way to alter a room as it’s easy to get stuck in a rut with the same old layout. Consider re-upholstering your suite rather than buying a new one and at the same time treat yourself to some smart new cushion covers. Rugs are a cheap and effective way of covering tired carpets while adding a splash of colour. 20

New curtains can instantly transform a room from dull to classy. Changing your furnishings with the season is a great way of breathing new life into your home; switching textures and fabrics refreshes a room and instantly alters the ambience. Choose light pastels for spring and summer with luxurious darker velvets for cosiness in the winter. Simply changing lampshades can make a big difference too. Or plan a new lighting arrangement using layered lighting for a sophisticated result. Layered lighting is a series of different types of lights such as dimmer switches for the main overhead light, uplighters in the corners of the room, table lamps, wall lamps and maybe candles for romantic evenings. Pictures dramatically alter the tone of a room but can become invisible if they’re left in the same place too long, so rearrange your pictures as well. Take the opportunity to have


your favourites reframed for a new look. Create a display on one wall of a number of small pictures such as photographs grouped together in similar frames. Stairways are a great place for this kind of display. Bathrooms can be easily updated by a lick of paint and new taps. Treat yourself to some new fluffy towels and decant shampoo, conditioner and liquid soaps into attractive containers. Tiles can be either painted over with special tile paint or apply attractive transfers to some of them for a new look. Grouting pens are a cheap way of whitening grubby grout. Dark hallways can be instantly brightened with new paint and mirrors. Mirrors are a great way of enhancing any area and also make it look bigger. These small changes to your home make it much more enticing to you and it will feel as if you have moved but without the extra stress and expense.

The kitchen can be quickly revitalised using the same method for renovating tiles and you can buy replacement cupboard doors with new modern handles.

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Then buy direct… Marble suites from just £399 or as a package with a 3.9KW gas fire just £499. Other packages are available in a range of sizes and colours. We are able to offer you these amazing deals by buying direct from the factory, so no middle man adding to your costs. We also offer a bespoke “MADE BY US” selection of stone and marble fireplaces. Tell us what you would like, Choose your style, choose your material and tell us your measurements. Come and have a look at over 100 displays of fireplaces, gas fires and electric fires. We are open to the public: Monday - Friday - 9.00am - 5.00pm and Saturday - 10.00am - 4.00pm All our installations are carried out by our team of Gas Safe & HETAS approved fitters. Full delivery and installation service available.

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Poppy Beautiful, bright red Poppies run wild in fields and are often chosen in gardens for their colourful flowers, growing anything up to 24 inches in height. Poppy flowers have 4-6 petals which can be any colour, not just red, and some also have markings. The petals are crumpled up inside the bud before flowering, then as they grow and come to the end of their season after a few days, lie flat and then gently fall away. They are easy to grow you can scatter the seeds on dry soil with no need to cover them and watch them pop up quite happily! Poppies are also used for symbolic reasons, being recognised in remembrance for those who have died during wartime. 01952 321334 | WWW.STAFFORDSHIREOUTLOOK.CO.UK

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Local paintball centre near Cannock est 25 years.

Tel: 01543 570062


Offering 70% discount on bookings. Free places if you organise a group.


We cater for Birthday, stag and hen parties, all ages above 11 years of age.


Trained staff, themed games, Laser and Airsoft sessions available. DIY for beginners Hang a simple shelf Decide where to place the shelf and check you won’t be drilling through a cable - look straight down for sockets! Mark the wall for the first bracket, check it is vertical with a spirit level then mark the screw holes. Drill, plug and screw to the wall. Do the same for the second bracket but make sure it is level with the first one using a laser level. Lay the shelf on top and attach with screws. Make sure the screws you use are short enough and won’t pop out of the top of the shelf!

2 1

6 3

5 8 5 2 1 6 9 5 3 9 7 3 1 8 4 5 7 1 Each row, column and 3x3 box must contain the numbers 1 to 9 just once. This can be done by applying logic -you don’t have to guess!

CROSSWORD Across 8. Former Italian currency (4) 9. Outrageous (10) 10. A domineering woman (6) 11. Languor (8) 12. Farewell gesture (4) 13. Guide (10) 17. Sediment (4) 18. Lacquer ingredient (5) 19. Smudge (4) 20. Fanatic (10) 22. Require (4) 23. Neither urban nor rural (8) 27. Plaid (6) 28. Indiscretion (10) 29. One-quarter of a bushel (4)

Down 1. An annoying or frustrating event (10) 2. Budgie (8) 3. Relax (10) 4. It comes from sheep (4)

5. Adjoin (4) 6. Accomplish (6) 7. Cozy (4) 14. Letter before iota (5) 15. Coquetry (10) 16. Joyful enthusiasm (10)

19. Insolvent (8) 21. Hindquarters (6) 24. Utilizer (4) 25. What we sleep in (4) 26. Void (4)



ffordshire ta S in ts n e ti a p r e c n a Older c eatment tr st e b n o st si in to d urge New report reveals under treatment of older people. Older cancer patients in Staffordshire are being urged to ensure they are getting the best possible treatment in the light of a new report revealing that the under treatment of older people in the UK is contributing to some of the worst survival rates in Europe. The report, from Macmillan Cancer Support, reveals that older people are less likely to receive cancer treatments such as surgery, radiotherapy and chemotherapy than younger people. Often, this is medically justifiable overtreatment is just as undesirable as under-treatment - but there is growing evidence that many older patients who could benefit from treatment are not being offered it. Macmillan Cancer Support’s report, says there are estimated 14,000 cancer deaths in the over 75s, meaning that about 40 deaths a day could be avoided each year in the UK if mortality rates were the same as those in the USA. David Crosby, regional General Manager for Macmillan Cancer Support, says: “Cancer is predominantly a disease of age, and our population is ageing. In order to deliver effective cancer care for these patients, it is vital that medical and social care staff are aware of the specific issues that this age group face.

“With the number of people diagnosed with cancer set to rise from two to four million in the next twenty years, and with over half of cancer cases diagnosed in people over 70, under-treatment of this age group is an issue which must be addressed as a matter of urgency.” Macmillan’s report highlights that, as well as late diagnosis, a number of issues may contribute to under treatment of older patients. They are: Recommendations on treatment are too often being made on the basis of age, regardless of how fit patients may be. Assessments do not adequately measure an older person’s ability to cope with treatment, and co-existing health problems are often not identified or effectively managed. Many patients do not take up treatment because they have inadequate practical support to help them at home, with transport, or with care for dependent spouses and other family.

Older people are not represented on enough clinical trials, reducing the amount of evidence available to clinicians on benefits and risks of cancer treatment and impact on quality of life. A lack of awareness of how to manage issues commonly observed in older people may also contribute to under treatment. In a survey of 98 oncology trainees, 60% reported that they have never received any training in the particular needs of older people with cancer, despite them making up half of numbers getting cancer each year. A further 19% reported they received this training only once. Says David Crosby, regional General Manager for Macmillan Cancer Support: “The older population is more likely to experience specific issues such as; other health problems, social isolation, difficulties getting to and from hospital. Lack of practical support and poor management of non-cancer related health problems present another barrier to cancer treatment. “It’s clear that based on what older people, their families and clinicians are telling us, much more must be done to ensure older cancer patients get the treatment and support that would give them the best chance of beating cancer.”

If you have questions about cancer, please visit or call 0808 808 00 00. 26


hew Ellis tt a M ts e e m k o o tl u O Staffordshire ty Council of Staffordshire Coun Matthew started with his local parish council and soon after he was elected as a Conservative to the local district council. 2005 saw him stand for, and win, the Lichfield Rural East Division of Staffordshire’s County Council where he represents 13,000 constituents across rural Lichfield and Tamworth. In June 2009 Conservatives won Staffordshire after 28 years of a Labour administration and Matthew was asked to take on Cabinet responsibility for Social Care and Health including a budget of £250million. Since then Matthew has spearheaded reform of Social Care to an early intervention and prevention service, including the award winning ‘Staffordshire Cares’. In late 2011 the result of 2 years work also saw the largest joint NHS and Social Care Trust in the UK established to provide joined up community healthcare. In 2012 Matthew established a new community led body to bring

independence to complaint handling, easy single point public access, coordinate engagement and consultation and collate intelligence and data for all healthcare services. After meeting Matthew the thing that stood out most about him is his passion for Staffordshire and how he wants to and will make a difference!

Matthew has some big challenges with the NHS and social care and with his determination and passion I am sure he will make some big changes in this department.

Quick fire questions… What do you want to tell the readers & why are you so passionate? I am passionate about local democracy and believe in a businesslike and consumer focused approach to public services. I want to see greater responsibilities for local government and believe that ‘very’ local decision making requires clearer political accountability.

What do you do in your spare time? I work an average of 60 hours per week and in my spare time I enjoy helicopter flying, the occasional game of squash or tennis and cooking.

What 3 things would you take to a desert island? Ipod, camera and hammock.



Tay Pastel Perfection By Helen


Great Looks This Spring Look gorgeously girly in a delightful mix of pretty pastel shades that are hot off the catwalk and simply perfect for spring. Team block colour with printed fabrics to create an eclectic look you’ll love.

Model (left) Print Dress £25 Pink Blazer £28 Miso at Republic

Model (bottom left) Floral Top £20 Skinny Jeans £30 ‘Mary Jane’ Heels £30 Miso at Republic

Skinny Jeans £14.99 Internacional

Print Top £25 River Island

Shoes £29.99 New Look

Bag £79

Ted Baker at House of Fraser 28

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Beauty They say if you feel good, you’ll look good, and if you look good you’ll feel good... However it’s a bit of a chicken and egg situation and you often need just a little help to achieve that first plus factor.

not only at how much difference it can make to your skin but also how soothing the treatment is and how great you will feel afterwards. Many ladies go on to an all-over treatment after a single facial treatment.

make sure you are healthy enough to undertake these routines and get a diet that will help you lose weight slowly, sensibly and permanently, then get enrolled in a fitness club or local gym.

Part of our problem in this country is lack of consistent sunshine. A course of sunbed exposure can work wonders - as long as you follow advice, don’t over-do the exposure times, use the correct moisturisers and wear the correct goggles.

First of all, if you are at all dissatisfied with yourself, strip off and look objectively at your image in the mirror. Do you bulge where you shouldn’t? Is that cellulite making you nervous of beachwear this summer? Is your skin a touch dingy and your hair out of control? If so a trip to your local beauty salon could be your first positive step towards a more beautiful, healthier you.

Hair and nails are the next areas of common neglect. A restyling, conditioning treatment and expert set will change your look and outlook completely. And while you sit under the dryer, have a manicure. Beautiful hands are often the first things anyone notices about you.

The advantages of a well organised club or gym are the supervision and planned exercise routines that will help tone your muscles, limber up your joints and the slimming campaign as well. Don’t panic if you appear to put weight on. It’s your measurements you need to keep check on. Toned, healthy muscle can be heavier than fat but less bulky and it’s those dimensions you are interested in, not your actual weight.

A facial could be your first strike for beauty. You would be surprised, 32

Of course none of this will help your figure if it’s showing the ravages of over-indulgence. What you need next is a supervised slimming and exercise programme. See your GP first to


Follow a regular regime of beauty, healthy diet and controlled exercise and it can be almost guaranteed, at the end of six months, you’ll be a different you - a healthier, more beautiful and vibrant person altogether.

at Amazing accessories With shoes, handbags and accessories that are guaranteed to ignite a passion for fashion in every shopper, Lily’s of Shifnal boasts an exciting range of fabulously unique and undoubtedly stylish pieces. Situated in a prime position in Shifnal’s village centre, Lily’s is bursting with everything you could possibly need to accessorise your outfit perfectly. Brimming with brands that will excite all shoe lovers, Lily’s range incorporates classic designs, epitomised by Riva and Lotus, and contrasts these with the latest individual looks from the ultra trendy Irregular Choice. Chic owner Jo Shervey handpicks suppliers and shares her eye for style with any customer looking for help,


when choosing to co-ordinate that special out-fit. Jo explains, “We see a growing number of customers who come into the shop with a dress, to find matching items to piece together a whole look.” “At Lily’s that challenge is made easy, enabling you to feel good for that special occasion; be it a party, wedding or just something glamorous and special.” Totally dedicated to offering only the very best in personal service, Jo prides herself on being able to spend time with her customers and enjoys delighting them with an array of superb shoes, heavenly handbags and fantastic fascinators. And it is this one-to-one treatment that sets the boutique apart from faceless high street chains, as well as explaining why the store has so much repeat business.

With exciting new handbag ranges from Smith and Canova soon to be gracing the shelves, the problem of trying to decide which one to choose just got harder. A fully stocked website means that you can now shop in the comfort of your own home; that’s if you can resist the temptation of seeing the sumptuous selection of shoes in the flesh.



Northern Gas

Wolverhampton based - Northern Gas Heating is now recognised as one of the UK’s foremost national central heating specialists. Winning the H & V news award as Domestic Heating Installer of 2010, the Northern Gas the approach is simple. “Our mission is to deliver better service and better prices than any other central heating company,” states Marketing Manager Paul Coupe. He goes on the say that “as a 34

Northern Gas customer we guarantee you will get an installation and a price that’s just right for you.” Northern Gas is passionate about quality and dedicated to service, making sure that their range of products is designed to cater to a customer’s specific needs, taking the hassle out of heating systems and guiding people through the maze of different products to ensure that what is installed is perfect for both home and lifestyle. Above all, Northern Gas only installs products that comply fully with British Safety Standards - manufactured by leading brand names.


When you choose Northern Gas you are opting for exceptional service, affordable pricing and therefore total peace of mind. And when it comes to safety there is no doubting that Northern Gas have a no compromise attitude, ensuring that all their engineers are fully trained utilising their sister company ‘Get Training’, with dedicated training centres in both Wolverhampton and Aylesbury. It almost goes without saying that a fully qualified GAS SAFE engineer undertakes every installation. In addition to high quality boilers and central heating systems, Northern Gas Heating also takes advantage of the very latest technology to provide

new developments have produced more efficient panels which are now available through Northern Gas Heating.” “To complement our solar options, we also take advantage of the latest technology to provide proven Air Source Heat Pump solutions that are tailored to the individual requirements of each home’. Air source heat pumps are similar in principle to a refrigerator but instead of cooling they take heat from the air and convert it into usable heat.” Historically serving a domestic market, Northern Gas now undertakes large commercially orientated installations as well as those for local authorities such as social housing. Northern Gas is also pleased to be associated with the A1 Fuel Switching scheme which is operated through a nationwide base of approved installers. Fuel switching involves moving from one type of fuel to another. As an effort to promote cleaner - more carbon friendly fuels, the A1 scheme aims to provide funding to help homeowners move to better heating alternatives.

a range of energy efficient and environmentally friendly solutions. Mr Coupe says, “It’s another exciting area in which Northern Gas is well placed to provide solutions on a National scale. With the growing trend towards renewable technologies, heating your household water can easily be achieved though the companies solar thermal alternatives. Essentially, solar hot water systems convert both sunlight and daylight into hot water. They are extremely efficient and are able to effectively heat water all year round, even when it is cloudy. First, solar panels are installed onto the roof to absorb energy. When they are exposed to light, these panels quickly

warm up. The resulting heat is then simply and safely transferred to the water held in the storage cylinder. Your existing boiler or immersion heater can be used in conjunction with a solar hot water system to heat water further. The hot water produced can be used in the normal manner as and when it is required.”

For instance, a homeowner whose house is primarily heated by electric or coal may be helped through the scheme to switch to gas or oil. But there are many different situations which may qualify for funding so it’s definitely worth checking with the company to determine if you qualify for any help.

“Employing solar energy through the use of photovoltaic (PV) panels is also fast becoming a popular method of electrical power generation. By installing PV solar not only will you be generating your own electricity but you’ll be able to sell any excess back to the National Grid. As demand for this technology has increased,

The company feels that that it offers a comprehensive service for an array of different types of customers and as a consequence looks forward to continued growth over the coming years. Northern Gas Heating, Harrison House, Marston Road, Wolverhampton WV2 4NJ Tel: 01902 393393



Tribute to the Queen competition, which will open on May 1st and close on May 19th, to design a plate to celebrate Queen Elizabeth II’s 60 years on the throne.

The Guildhall Shopping Centre has joined forces with the Wedgwood Visitor Centre to create Stafford’s own tribute to the Queen for the Diamond Jubilee. Bosses at Stafford’s biggest shopping attraction have launched a new

Winners in the three age categories – 4-10, 11-17 and 17 and above – will have their designs fired at the Wedgwood Visitor Centre in Barlaston, and be invited to the visit the Wedgwood factory to be presented with their finished plates. They will also be able to meet the artists who have hand-painted their designs, and will see the entire production process. Wedgwood Visitor Centre Bookings Manager Julie Gibson said: “The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee is going to be a glorious and memorable event and we are pleased to be able to use the unique skills of our artists to transfer the winning designs onto a presentation plate. “Our winners will be able to take a leisurely walk around the Wedgwood Museum for a revealing insight into the life and legacy of Josiah Wedgwood, ‘The Father of English Potters’, as well as a tour around the manufacturing facility.” Guildhall Shopping Centre Marketing Manager Anne Graham said: “We wanted to mark the Diamond Jubilee in our own way and create a lasting memory of the occasion.

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Market Square, Stafford St16 2BB tel 01785 223107 Closing date for entries Saturday 19th May. All entries should state name, age, tel no and email address on the reverse of the plate. Wedgwood Visitor Centre will kindly transfer the winning designs onto a presentation plate. Supported by

All donations will be in support of

“We are really pleased to be working alongside Wedgwood Visitor Centre for this competition and are extremely grateful for their support and involvement. “To enter, customers can collect a paper plate from the Lottery Kiosk and get them back to us by May 19th. “The winners will be notified the week after and their designs will become a reality in June.” There will be a one day ‘Design a Jubilee Plate’ at the centre on May 5th (10.30-3.30) to officially launch the competition and help will be on hand to provide ideas and inspiration to design the winning plate. Richard Ralph is Senior Surveyor at DTZ, the managing agents for the Guildhall Shopping Centre. He said: “This competition is going to find some budding artists and it is wonderful that the winning designs will be transformed into unique presentation plates. “We are thrilled to have a collaboration with Wedgwood who are such a prestigious Staffordshirebased company.”

Further information is available at Media enquiries should be directed to Richard Swancott Associates on 01782 472035 or



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Your Monthly Horoscope ARIES MARCH 21 - APRIL 20 Finances are in the spotlight this month as the Sun illuminates all areas of earning and spending. Income may be somewhat erratic, but after the alignment of the Sun and Jupiter on the 12th you should get a better handle on the situation and a lucky break could come your way. TAURUS APRIL 21 - MAY 21 A month of personal growth and transformation as abundant Jupiter gets close and personal with your Sun. You will be looking at the way others perceive you and how you could strengthen your sense of self and gain in confidence. Hard work and accomplishment are possible now GEMINI MAY 22 - JUNE 21 Its all systems go with your domestic life this month, energetic and fiery Mars provides you with extra energy, motivation and power to move forward with your plans. Money might be invested in your home, and turning a long-standing dream into reality is now possible. CANCER JUNE 22 - JULY 22 Communication is high on your agenda this month as energetic Mars stirs you into action. You could surprise those around you who are used to you demure and conciliatory approach to life. The full moon on the 6th is very favourable for bringing your determination to the forefront. LEO JULY 23 - AUGUST 23 Finances are still high on your agenda during May and new and innovative earning potentials can come to the forefront. The spectacular alignment of the Sun and benevolent Jupiter on the 12th occurs in the career angle of your chart. You could receive the good news that you’ve been waiting for. VIRGO AUGUST 24 - SEPTEMBER 22 Mighty Jupiter smiles favourably on you during this month, helping you to treat minor inconveniences with a positive attitude and also boosting your morale. Neptune may well be casting a veil of confusion over partnership matters, but on the whole romance can flourish and bloom.

LIBRA SEPTEMBER 23 - OCTOBER 23 The Sun and optimistic Jupiter are aligning themselves very nicely in one of the financial areas of your chart. This could be a very auspicious month for Librans. Financial opportunities will most certainly present themselves to you, and the 12th could turn out to be very lucky. SCORPIO OCTOBER 24 - NOVEMBER 22 The month begins with a full moon in your sign on the 6th. This could turn out to be a rather introspective month. Transformational Pluto also encourages you to look within for buried treasure. You could uncover facets of your personality that you haven’t yet accepted or acknowledged. SAGITTARIUS NOVEMBER 23 - DECEMBER 21 A busy month for you as the spectacular alignment of the Sun and expansive Jupiter on the 12th brings the culmination of an important work project. Events occur that highlight your responsibilities in your professional life. You might also use this time to reassess your romantic goals. CAPRICORN DECEMBER 22 - JANUARY 20 Romance is in the spotlight this month as the Sun cuddles up to expansive Jupiter on the 12th. You have been evaluating what you need in a relationship and are probably quite surprised to find that freedom is very important to you. Don’t push yourself too hard, relaxation is important now. AQUARIUS JANUARY 21 - FEBRUARY 18 Enthusiasm and optimism should be high on the agenda for you this month. You’ll have big ideas about how to increase your income. While you continue to brainstorm money making potentials, your attention also turns to learning, networking and communicating in exciting new ways. PISCES FEBRUARY 19 - MARCH 20 The alignment of Sun and Jupiter put you in a courageous and optimistic mood. Your path to greatest fulfilment is through avoiding becoming too dependent on others and recognizing your ability to stand alone. In the past this has not always been easy, but in this new cycle it can become second nature.



ngs UK Total Glass Fitwti are Specialists rd

The Architectural Ha

Specialists in architectural glass components and systems, Total Glass Fittings UK are the premier choice for those looking to modernise and improve their home using the most upto-date and innovative glass products. Situated in Chapel Ash, near to the hub of Wolverhampton’s city centre, the company offer bespoke and inventive solutions in stainless steel and glass that are perfect for the modern home. Glass shower enclosures, balconies, partitions, doors and beautiful balustrades can transform a plain, tired and dated space into a sophisticated and thoroughly unique living area that showcases cutting edge design and style at it’s very best. Creating the illusion of endless space, glass additions offer a seamless and uninterrupted continuity between areas. And it’s not just homes that benefit from the stylish fittings on offer at Total Glass Fittings, the team cater for commercial projects too.



“Our mission is to develop and supply complete hardware solutions by being the experts in stainless steel architectural glass products. We have an extensive range of single toughened and toughened laminated hardware products for both architectural and domestic purposes,” explains director Jamie Wilkes. Employing their years of experience in the glass and glazing industry, where they have specialised in balustrades, canopies, structural glazing, glass partitioning and more, the team at Total Glass Fittings offer expert information and advice to their customers and a level of service that is second to none - from start to finish. “Our goal is understanding, satisfying and exceeding our customers expectations, combined with delivering the quality and excellence you would expect from a leading supplier. We have a strict quality policy and deliver the highest standards of customer service,” says Jamie. So if your property is crying out for an injection of style and 21st Century cutting-edge chic, contact the team at Total Glass Fittings UK today.



From a dusty pub cellar, with the sound of waves crashing in the background, come Hornswaggle; a band out of time, with stories to tell and good times to be had.

Hornswaggle Take a chair, draw up a pint of real ale, and meet Hornswaggle Merging folk music styles and instrumentation with fairytales, folklore, pagan and pirate imagery, plus a healthy dose of real ale, the band are developing quite a fanbase both in the UK and over in the US. “The songs have wide appeal,” the band said. “We like telling stories. All of our songs are filled with pirates, highwaymen, hangings, magic and booze. What’s not to enjoy?” Created by Chris Peace (guitars and vocals) and Damien Mckeating (double bass) the duo have created close to thirty original songs in a little over a year, with more coming all the time. Mark Hargreaves (accordion and vocals) and Emily Thompson (vocals) fill out the core line up, with fiddle and percussion added as needed. 40

Listening to their songs you quickly notice how much variation there is between them; from the twisted fairytale folk of Red, to the rousing Good For What Ails You, or the poignant and heartfelt Sun On Your Face. Yet each song feels part of a whole, it feels like it belongs to that unique Hornswaggle sound. A mix of male and female vocals and three part harmonies is all part of that sound – and you may already be familiar with it. Hornswaggle have


been heard on Stafford FM’s What The Folk Is That and on the BBC Shropshire show Folk On Sunday, where the band were invited to do a live session. So far this year Hornswaggle have released a promo video for The Circle, filmed in a haunted pub, and are busy rehearsing ahead of getting into the studio and recording their debut album ‘Songs of Love, Lust and Loss’. “We’re looking forward to recording, and to getting out there and playing live. We’ve got lots of songs and we want people to hear them. Come along, drink some ale, stamp your feet and have a good time.”

A Hornswaggle website is due to launch this year but for now you can find out about live dates and enjoy some swaggling music with a quick Hornswaggle search on Facebook, or check them out on YouTube and Soundcloud.

r A name to look out fo At only 15 he’ll entertain you with a cross section of music covering several decades. He’ll play you sing along rock and roll one minute and one of his own compositions the next. Ask him for an Elton John hit and he can play you them all. If The Beatles is your thing he’ll do most of their hits too. Coldplay, James Morrison, Michael Bublé, Stevie Wonder as well as rock songs from Queen, the list and variety is endless and just about everything is played from memory. This versatile singer - song writer will mix it up with all ages and have people tapping their feet in no time. The name to look out for by the way is Louis Coupe. Having appeared in several stage shows, Louis has a wealth of experience as both actor and accomplished singer. Through his appreciation of stars famed for influencing pop, rock and jazz, Louis has been inspired to emulate names from a broad spectrum and mixture of styles.

Louis Coupe

Without any formal piano lessons Louis was quick to learn, gaining a spot in ‘Telford’s Got Talent’ final in 2009 after just 4 months at the piano! Louis revisited the event in 2011 and walked away with third spot for his efforts. Louis can’t help but impress when playing the songs from the past. To hear Louis breathe new life into hits from all our yesteryears is something to behold. If you’re old enough to remember the likes of Jerry Lee Lewis, you’ll love watching Louis cover songs like Great Balls of Fire or Whole Lotta Shakin’ Going On. If you’d like to relive the days of Chuck Berry and hits like Johnny B. Goode and Route 66, Louis is more than happy to oblige. At the age of just 15, he looks set to make a big impression through his own song writing and musical collaborations. 2010 saw Louis front his school (Thomas Telford) choir at the Royal Albert Hall during the Youth Proms. Over the past 18 months his song writing has been prolific. “Sometimes the lyrics come first, sometimes the music.” Says Louis. “There’s no one particular

approach, it just happens if I’m feeling creative. If I hear something that I like the sound of I’ll be keen to try and produce a song in a similar style”. His favoured instruments are the piano or guitar although the harmonica, mandolin and ukulele also play their part. To date Louis has self-produced two albums with the most recent now available to download from iTunes. Louis goes on to say “I just play what I like the sound of. I’ll spend hours practicing because I only concentrate on the music I love. I don’t think formal lessons would ever have suited me.” Louis plans to take his musical and performing interests forward. He’ll be studying Performing Arts when he starts sixth form later this year and then he eyes a position at stage or musical school in a couple of years time. It seems we can all look forward to plenty more of what we’ve seen so far. Look out for Louis as he will be performing in and around the region in the coming months.

If you’re interested in learning more about Louis he’s easy to find - just Google him. 01952 321334 | WWW.STAFFORDSHIREOUTLOOK.CO.UK


f need’ o s e m ti in y it n u m m o ‘Helping the fire c The Fire Fighters Charity is the UK’s leading provider of services that enhance quality of life for serving and retired fire service personnel and their families. Our vision is to make a positive difference by supporting people in the fire and rescue community when they are in need. Our mission is to place beneficiaries at the heart of everything we do, ensuring that the fire and rescue community can rely on The Fire Fighters Charity as its primary point of contact for advice and support. We aim to provide practical assistance and solutions to make a real difference to the lives of members of the fire service community.

as recuperation breaks that provide the chance to relax in peaceful and tranquil surroundings, which can aid emotional recovery following illness, injury, or bereavement. It costs £9m every year to meet the needs of our beneficiaries, and with no government funding, we rely entirely upon donations from the general public and the fire and rescue community. In order for us to improve our services year on year, it is vital for us to have a reliable source of income that we can depend on. There are lots of ways that you can support us. You can donate to The Fire Fighters Charity by joining our Regular Giving scheme, playing The Fire Fighters Lottery, leaving a gift in your will, recycling your unwanted clothing and textiles, or by making a one-off donation. With everything

Our Beneficiary Support Service offers a free confidential and impartial helpline for the fire and rescue community - providing advice and support on a broad range of issues - as well as having a nationwide network of professional staff and trained volunteers available to help locally. Our three centres in Devon, Cumbria and West Sussex offer rehabilitation programmes to serving and retired members of the fire and rescue community, as well 42


from Car Washes to Ladies Driving Challenges and overseas treks to bake sales, we also have a range of events for everyone to get involved with!

Why donate to The Fire Fighters Charity? Across the County, from Kidsgrove and Longnor in the north, to Wombourne and Kinver in the south, Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service is at the heart of your local community. The Service works tirelessly with its partners to make your County a safer place to live and work. Your local fire fighters do all they can to improve the lives and wellbeing of everyone in Staffordshire, and in particular they want to reduce deaths and serious injuries caused by accidental fires in the home. Through a mixture of pioneering campaigns and home fire risk checks, they’re doing just that!

Any amount you can afford helps us to provide practical assistance and solutions to make a real difference to the lives of members of the fire service community. Donating just £6 a month via our Regular Giving scheme allows us to take advantage of the Government’s Gift Aid policy, so we can claim an extra 25% (£1.50) at no cost to you or the Charity! And as little as £50 allows a fire service employee and their family to attend a day’s recuperation at one of our centres following cases of injury, illness, or bereavement.

11069 SSFS COOKING FIRE xPOSTERS 1 20/01/2012 09:471 Page 1 11069 SSFS COOKING FIRE POSTERS 2_Layoutx12_Layout 20/01/2012 09:47 Page

Over 50% ofofhouse Over 50% housefires firesstart start in the kitchen. Watch in the kitchen. Watchyour yourpan! pan! For lots of useful Fire Safety information, For lots of useful Fire Safety information, visitvisit us at us at FREE Home FireFire Risk Check FREE Home Risk Check Call 0800 0241 999999 Call 0800 0241



erside Mill

za In Riv n a g a v a tr x E s e u q ti n A Any seeker of vintage treasures would do well to visit Bridgnorth’s Old Mill Antiques Centre - housed in an historic seed mill - on the banks of the River Severn. The centre has been open for 16 years and is as popular today as it was when it opened in 1996 - when literally thousands of visitors poured through the doors during the opening weekend. The Old Mill is one of the biggest antiques centres in the country, offering four floors of displays and stands featuring literally something for everyone. Traders from all over the UK and Europe sell their wares at the centre and it has continued to flourish at all times, despite occasional downturns in the antiques market. “We have always been successful and managed to weather difficult times within the industry,” says Old Mill co-director Denis Ridgway. “We try to appeal to everyone, not just the informed antiques collector. Our view is that antiques and collectables are of general appeal and can be displayed in any home whether period or contemporary.”


“You don’t have to be wealthy to collect and appreciate antiques, there are many items available at very affordable prices.” The choice at the Old Mill is tremendously varied. Jewellery, porcelain, militaria, pop ephemera, watercolours, oil paintings, prints, vintage furniture, silver, musical instruments - the list just goes on and on. Jewellery on sale includes a fantastic selection of engagement rings (both period and reproduction), costume jewellery and crystal, and ranges in price from just a few pounds right up to several thousand for items featuring precious stones. “We have 90 dealers operating at the Old Mill, from as far afield as Brussels and Berlin,” says Denis. “The range of items on sale is vast, catering for all kinds of tastes and budgets - and that’s why the Old Mill is so popular.” “People come here to browse and buy from all over the country, often spending hours here and having a break in our tearooms, which open for breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea. Some people stay all day!” “We’re always busy, especially at weekends and during bank holidays. I think part of the attraction is that people can browse at their leisure and buy if they wish, there is no pressure from our sales team - they are just on hand to help and advise if called upon.”


The Old Mill also sells a range of reproduction furniture, including pine and oak refectory tables made to measure, and period items include church pews, desks, dining tables and chairs, chaises, beds, day beds, wardrobes, armoires and cupboards. “Vintage furniture is lovely but sometimes the chairs in particular are not practical for everyday use in modern times - we’re a little heavier today than we were centuries ago,” says Denis. “Reproduction furniture provides all the old-fashioned charm and style with a more robust approach, plus sizes can be tailored to modern rooms - what worked in a Georgian mansion would not fit easily into the average home today!” The Old Mill is open seven days a week from 10am until 5pm. Parking is free and a UK-wide delivery service is available. The Old Mill’s sister company, Perry and Phillips Auctioneers, hold sales of antiques and collectables. Perry and Phillips dates back to 1835 and is a highly respected auction house attracting both vendors and buyers from all over the UK. Sale valuation mornings are held at Mill Street every Wednesday, from 10am until 2pm, and valuations of large items can be arranged in situ by making an appointment with auctioneer John Ridgway. Viewing is always the weekend and Monday prior to the auction and catalogues are available.

Old Mill Antique Centre At The Old Mill Antique Centre we have 4 floors of antiques and quality reproduction furniture – and literally thousands of gift ideas for everyone – all displayed in charming and elegant room settings

Antique & Reproduction Furniture 1000’s of Gift Ideas Bespoke Furniture Beautiful tables made to your design & specification in-house using only the best quality seasoned Oak or Pine.

Tea Room Serving Delicious Homemade Cakes & Snacks Open Monday – Sunday 10am – 5pm Car Parking Available Mill Street, Low Town Bridgnorth WV15 5AG Tel: 01746 762248



A New Samurai:

A rose by any other name would smell just as sweet, according to Shakespeare. And, as it turns out, the same applies to performance saloons. Rob Taylor explains. When it comes to performance car icons, nothing gets the oil pumping faster in the veins of petrol-heads quite like a Subaru Impreza.

Chiefly responsible for all this poise is the legendary Subaru All-Wheel Drive (AWD) which, by default, splits engine torque 49/51% between front and rear wheels, as well as the unique cornering advantages proffered by the low-mounted horizontally-opposed Boxer powerplant. Enthusiasts can even play with the myriad set-ups available from the four-mode Driver’s Control Centre

For nearly two decades the iconic badge has adorned some of the most exhilarating four-door saloons ever made. The Impreza has been the undisputed champion of the turbocharged rocket ships that are just as good on shopping trips. But now the emperor from the brand of the rising sun has new clothes - a four-door saloon body-shell, previously unavailable in the new shape before 2011 and now offered alongside the hatchback variant - and a new name that is still synonymous with speed: WRX STI. So it’s a Subaru Impreza no longer, it’s now just called Subaru WRX STI. Yet despite its name-change all the best bits remain the same, as this latest version of our old friend has lost none of its power and presence. After all - what’s in a name? Would Marilyn Monroe have been any less beguiling as Norma Jean Mortenson? Did Cassius Clay pack any less punch as Muhammed Ali? One thing is for sure, the STI’s 2.5 litre turbocharged four cylinder engine is a knock-out. POWER IS NOTHING WITHOUT CONTROL Developing 296bhp and 300lb ft of torque and weighing in at just 1,505kg, the STI is an adrenaline pump. Understandably it’s chock full of all the latest safety aids and electronic wizardry (like Vehicle Dynamics Control; a kind of ESP) to ensure its massive 245/40 R18 rubbers remain glued to the road. 46

Subaru WRX STi


Differential, switching seamlessly between track-day precision and everyday versatility. Find the ‘G-Spot’ in the STI’s differential and you’ll be the STIG. NO COMPROMISE ON THE DAY-TO-DAY However despite the track-focussed aspects, newly lowered ride height and wider tyres, the STI offers a compliant ride that’s easy to live with

everyday, as well as a respectable combined fuel economy figure of 26.9mpg. Not too shabby considering its performance statistics upstage everything but supercars: 0-62 mph is dealt with in 5.2 seconds, with a top speed of 158mph. So much for W. O Bentley’s famous motto: “There’s no replacement for displacement.” What’s also refreshing is that in an age of innumerable manufacturer optional add-ons, the STI is pure and unadulterated: 18” alloy wheels, Recaro seats, cruise control, keyless

entry, climate control and pushbutton start are all standard features. So too - thankfully - are the massive Brembo-made brakes. Particularly useful if ever you wish to put the bewitchingly taut chassis and superb road holding to the test, allowing this B-Road brawler to thrust towards the horizon, producing as it flies a soundtrack of turbo whine that’ll have bystanders looking skywards for answers. THE SONG REMAINS THE SAME For even when stationary or at idle the four exhausts produce a pulsating burble that speaks of caged power,

so too do the flared wheel arches, side vents and massive bonnet air scoop. This car is performance given form. Inside, the STI is a picture of pleasant practicality. High quality materials intersect beautifully with the latest technological buzzwords - iPod and Bluetooth both feature. Complete a journey; exhale, prod the engine stop/ start button, and you’ll be left thoroughly punchdrunk; grinning and gasping in awe about how £32,995 can buy so much. And how a name-change can mean so little. The king is dead. Long live the king.



ted XC90 The new upgeda and Wolverhampton

at Brindley Stourbrid

The practical yet elegant XC90 has become a 4x4 icon in the nine years it has been rolling off the production line but the latest version is already turning even more heads on West Midlands’ roads, according to Stourbridge and Wolverhampton Brindley dealerships. The XC90’s blend of attractive styling and seven-seat versatility – it can be configured in 64 different ways - retains its handling and comfort alongside its sophistication and excellent capability yet adds a number of new features for 2012 models. New external features include: • New day running light configuration using LEDs in the lower bumper on the front for even more character • Redesigned silver metallic bumper bar and silver roof rails are now standard on all variants • New lower door moulding • All XC90 specifications are now fully colour-coordinated • New tail lamps have dual light guides - LED brake lights and a silver turn indicator bulb (still with orange light) • New six-spoke 18-inch wheel in a silver matt finish

New interior features include: • Three-spoke steering wheel • Aluminium décor as standard • Watch dial-inspired instrument design with white lighting • The tailgate, which is divided into an upper and a lower section, now comes with a new, colourcoordinated leather grab handle • Redesigned load cover The new details have been specially designed to enhance the XC90 and, of course, all the features and specifications that helped the vehicle attain its iconic status remain. There’s so many on the XC90 but here’s a few of the Brindley sales team’s favourites:All-Wheel Drive is an electronically controlled system that distributes engine power between the front and rear wheels quickly and automatically enhancing stability and reducing understeer and oversteer. PreTension® improves take-off speed and delivers higher traction on slippery surfaces. Dynamic Stability and Traction Control continuously registers the car’s roll rate, making it possible to detect slowly building skids at an early stage. Roll Stability Control is an active system that intervenes in situations when the car senses that there is a risk of rolling over.

WHIPS (Whiplash Protection System), SIPS (Side Impact Protection System) and IC (Inflatable Curtain) are all standard safety features on the Volvo XC90 whilst many components have been enhanced on the latest model. Volvo’s On Call system can now be combined with Bluetooth mobile phone connection whilst the system has been upgraded with music streaming from a preferred Bluetooth enabled portable music player. A new mobile application, an extension of Volvo’s On Call system, makes sure that the driver can stay in touch with the parked car via an iPhone or Android smart phone. A mobile application can be downloaded for 2012 models which includes a range of features such as a car locator. The XC90, available in five trim levels, is powered by the high-performance D5 engine that produces 200 horsepower and 420 Nm of torque, meeting the Euro 5 legislation. Brindley Wolverhampton’s general manager Peterjohn Durrell Comments: “Since it was first launched, the XC90 was always a popular choice of vehicle, and the latest version raises the bar even higher. We are already seeing an increase in enquiries and we expect to see an even bigger leap in sales this year.”

The XC90, priced from £35,175 on-the-road, is available to test drive at: BRINDLEY Stourbridge, Grange Lane, Lye, Stourbridge DY9 7HH. Call 08430 223248 to make an appointment. BRINDLEY Wolverhampton, Wolverhampton Road, Codsall, WV8 1HF. Call 08430 222908 to make an appointment.



Useful Numbers CHEMISTS Cornwell`s Chemist Colliery Pharmacy Bain’s Pharmacy Healthcare Lloyds Pharmacy Minster Pharmacy The Co-operative Pharmacy Boots Northwood Dispensing Chemist

01543 509434 01543 462453 01543 279415 01543 422512 01543 504219 01543 577512 01543 572272 01543 573149

01543 510216 01543 510201 01543 502215

HOSPITALS Cannock Chase Hospital South Staffs Healthcare NHS Trust Stafford Hospital Rowley Hall Hospital

01543 572757 01543 686224 01785 257731 01785 238600


COUNCILS Hednesford Town Council Cannock Chase Countryside Service Burntwood Town Council Staffordshire Borough Council Staffordshire County Council South Staffordshire District Council

01543 424872 01543 450018 01543 677166 01785 619000 03001 118000 01902 696000

Burntwood Post Office Co-operative Post Office Heath Hayes Post Office Norton Canes Office Pye Green Post Office North East Post Office

01543 679064 01543 425431 01543 279200 01543 279223 01543 871734 01543 279223


EDUCATION Chase Academy Cannock Chase High School St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School St Marys Catholic Primary School

Sherbrook Primary School Bridgtown Primary School Cardinal Griffin Catholic High School

01543 501800 01543 502450 01543 512230 01543 510380

In an emergency always call 999

For general enquiries: Staffordshire Police Staffordshire Fire Service

0300 123 4455 08451 221155

Puzzle Answers CROSSWORD


5 8 9 4 6 1 7 3 2

4 2 3 8 9 7 5 6 1

1 7 6 5 2 3 4 8 9

9 6 5 2 3 4 1 7 8

2 1 8 6 7 5 3 9 4

7 3 4 9 1 8 2 5 6

8 9 7 3 4 2 6 1 5

6 4 1 7 5 9 8 2 3

3 5 2 1 8 6 9 4 7



Index of Advertisers Antiques & Auctioneers Old Mill


Beds & bedroom Furniture Interiors Italia


Entertainments and Leisure South Staffs Leisure Centre Amerton Farm and Craft Centre Phoenix Skirmish Paintball


Fashion/Retail Grace & Glory Lily’s of Shifnal

Telford Carpets


Fostering Staffordshire District Council

Frank James Furnishers


Blinds / Curtains Valentines Blinds Carpets (Supply & Fit)

Car Sales Brindley Volvo


Children’s Activities

Fire Place/Stoves Fireside Factory Furniture/Furnishings Frank James Furnishers Interiors Italia

18 17 25 30 33 9

Interior Designers Total Glass Fittings Jewellers T A Henn Restaurants Kings Repose Halfpenny Green Vineyards Patshull Park Solar Energy Installations Northern Gas

13 24 24 2

Teeth Whitening Laser White


51 15

Vineyard and Craft Centre Halfpenny Green Vineyards Amerton Farm and Craft Centre

24 17 24


South Staffs Leisure Centre


Glass and Hardware Specialists Total Glass Fittings 39

Weddings and Occasions Patshull Park


Hairdressers Stargaze

Windows and Conservatories UPVC Direct

Staffordshire Fire Service



Amerton Farm and Craft Centre

Emergency Services




onth: M e th f o ip T p o T ’s m o T of Top of Foot Pain Causes

There are varied causes for this condition. The location of the pain can be the major determinant of the causative agent. For instance the fracture of a tarsal bone can cause some pain just behind the toes. This pain tends to come in an on-and-off manner. In such a situation, the affected area gets swollen and it even becomes very painful when touched. Another type of top of foot pain occurs at the top of the toes and the mid-foot. The pain occurs as a result of the inflammation of the tendons leading to the toes leading to a condition referred to as extensor tendonitis. One of the possible causes of such a condition can be the tightness of calf muscles. This situation can be aggravated by trauma and wearing of tight shoes. In order to alleviate the effect of top of foot pain, you can choose to stretch 50

the calf muscles. If this does not work, you can opt for the so called functional orthotic. This is a procedure that adjusts the alignment of the leg so as to reduce the stress on the tendons. Osteoarthritis is also a common cause of top on pain on the upper part of the foot. The complication is most likely to occur to people who have flat feet. This kind of pain can be relieved through foot orthotics. In severe situations, this complication can lead to a surgical operation. There is also a generalized foot pain condition. This is mostly manifested in kids. It is believed to occur due to collision of the toes. These is also the top of foot pain that occurs on the exterior. This is due to a tarsal condition caused by the fusing of bones in the middle foot. This is worsened with more activity. In many cases, this graduates to the deadly arthritis condition. Early diagnosis of this complication can be done through the use of MRI scan and x-rays.


The other top of foot pain is found below the ankle on the outer side of the foot. This is medically referred to as the sinus tarsi syndrome. It causes the inflammation of the three major ligaments located in this part. People with flat feet are more prone to catching the disease. To reduce the pains, regular stretching is required. It rarely would require surgery to treat, but orthotics may help. For an appointment please call Tom on: 07828 613165 or email:

The Carpet Showroom that comes to you... James Carpets is a long established family business, specialising in fitted carpets with many thousands of satified customers.

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OPEN: 9-4.45pm Mon-Sat, CLOSED Wed afternoon and Sun51 01952 321334 | WWW.STAFFORDSHIREOUTLOOK.CO.UK

Flaunt it from every angle

XC90 D5 R-Design Premium Auto RRP £42,570

SAVING £8,112


£34,458 OTR

The R-Design adds even more attitude to the XC90. With sport chassis, stainless steel scuff plates, sport seats and double exhaust pipes, it is a design that will turn heads.


Wolverhampton Road, Codsall, Wolverhampton WV8 1HF Also now at

BRINDLEY STOURBRIDGE Grange Lane, Lye, Stourbridge DY9 7HH

T. 08430 225525


Fuel consumption for the Volvo XC90 D5 R-Design Premium Auto in mpg: Urban 25.7, Extra Urban 41.5, Combined 34.0, CO2 emissions 219 g/km. Price based on non metallic. Offer on stock vehicles only. Prices supersede

all previous offers and are correct at time of going | MAY/JUNE 52 STAFFORDSHIRE OUTLOOK 2012 to press. Pictures for illustration only. Part of the Brindley Garages Group – keeping the West Midlands motoring since 1931.

Staffordshire Outlook May/June  

Staffordshire Outlook magazine is a free monthly full colour glossy B5 size magazine. We produce 10,000 copies each month with distribution...

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