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ISSUE 76 // OCTOBER 2018

FR

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!

You r sport a n d l i f e st y l e m ag a zi n e

R e ve ale d : th e Secr e ts of th e Shoot Not one for the field? Still, train your dog, eat great seasonal food and wear the latest autumn clothing

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www.theACTIVEmag.com

ISSUE 76 // OCTOBER 2018

INSIDE

Wedding Countdown / Gretton and Rockingham Castle Bytham walk How to go glamping / Good fats and bad fats / Are you a helicopter parent?


Open Days 2018

Our Schools work together to provide an outstanding day and boarding education for girls and boys aged 3 to 18. We take pride in developing curiosity and a love of learning, while helping to shape well-rounded individuals who are fully equipped for the next stage in their lives.

Stamford School (Boys 11-18) Saturday 6th October

Stamford High School (Girls 11-18) Saturday 6th October

Stamford Junior School & Nursery School (Boys & Girls 3-11) Saturday 13th October

Sixth Form (Boys & Girls 16-18) Wednesday 10th October

To book your place, visit stamfordschools.co.uk or call us on 01780 750311


Editor’s Letter

Publisher Chris Meadows chris@theactivemag.com Editor Steve Moody steve@theactivemag.com Deputy editor Mary Bremner mary@theactivemag.com

THE END OF THE CRICKET SEASON SAW one of the more remarkable retirements in sport, when Alastair Cook stroked the ball around The Oval like a 21-year old without a care in the world on his way to a valedictory century in this last test innings. Some said after that it goes to show he should have carried on, but in fact what it showed was exactly why he shouldn’t: for two years he had been weighed down by the pressure of trying to fight for his place and had become horribly stilted and increasingly runless. Freed of that mental weight he could again be the greatest runscorer England has ever had, for five glorious final days. Throw in the fact that he is a thoroughly decent bloke and a credit to his country, and you’ve got the type of sportsman you see very rarely, and good on him for going out on his own terms. For most sportsmen and women, the end comes in ignomy and failure, as age or form catches up and flattens them, and they end up sitting behind the table at a press conference tearfully explaining why they’ve decided to call it a day. For those of us not in the public eye and professional, sporting age is less brutal and more slowly realised; the point slowly dawning that you have spent more of a season injured or being bested by kids you wouldn’t have given a second thought to a decade previously. And for most of us, retiring from a sport you love doesn’t mean endless days wondering what to do with the rest of your life, and how you can fill this deep existential void. It probably just means more shopping trips at the weekend.

Production editor Julian Kirk julian@theactivemag.com Art editor Mark Sommer mark@theactivemag.com Contributors Martin Johnson, William Hetherington, Jeremy Smithson-Beswick, Julia Dungworth Photographers Nico Morgan, Pip Warters Production assistant Gary Curtis Advertising sales Lisa Chauhan lisa@theactivemag.com Amy Roberts amy@theactivemag.com Editorial and Advertising Assistant Kate Maxim kate@theactivemag.com Accounts accounts@theactivemag.com Active magazine, The Grey House, 3 Broad Street, Stamford, PE9 1PG. Tel: 01780 480789

Steve

If you have information on a club then get in touch by emailing editor@theactivemag.com. If you would like to stock Active magazine then email distribution@ theactivemag.com. If you would like to discuss advertising possibilities please email advertise@ theactivemag.com. Active magazine is published 12 times per year on a monthly basis. ISSN 2059-8513 A Grassroots Publishing Limited company. Company registration number 7994437. VAT number 152717318

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Contents

ISSUE 76 / OCTOBER 2018

ACTIVE LIFE

ACTIVE KIDS

REGULARS

10 WHAT’S ON

48 SCHOOL SPORTS

53 MARTIN JOHNSON

Great local events for all the family

13 HELP THE HEDGEHOGS

Focus on our talented young players

Tennis has some behavioural issues

62 CHALLENGES

Tips on looking after our prickly friends

FEATURES

15 GROW YOUR OWN

32 WEDDING COUNTDOWN

64 ON YOUR BIKE!

18 FOUR GO GLAMPING

54 RIGHT ON TARGET

66 ROUND-UP

Time to plant your fruit and veg

10 tips to make your big day special

Active tries camping with a luxury twist

The secrets of shooting

Updates on our intrepid fund-raisers An Oundle-based 43-mile ride How clubs in the area are faring

24 GREAT WALKS

Rockingham and Castle Bytham

31 PET PAGE

Help your pet cope with fireworks night

ACTIVE BODY 41 SHOULDERING A BURDEN

Treatment at Barn House Physiotherapy

42 FAT CHANCE

Nutrition advice from Dawn Revens

45 BACK ISSUES

Avicenna Clinic advice on slipped discs

32 18

45

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Activelife Start planning for spring in your garden ● Fabulous autumn foliage ● Glorious glamping ● Everything you need for a wedding ● Walk with Will ● How to protect hedgehogs Edited by Mary Bremner

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Activelife

Nominations now open Oadby and Wigston Borough Council, Everyone Active and the Local Sport Alliance ‘Active Oadby Wigston’ are hosting the Oadby and Wigston Awards Evening 2018 on November 21. Nominations are invited from residents, clubs, groups and schools for 10 individual and team categories and must be in by October 8. To view the categories and nominate online go to www.activeoadbywigston.org.uk/ sportsawards2018

TOLETHORPE YOUTH DRAMA RELAUNCHED Stamford Shakespeare Company has recently relaunched Tolethorpe Youth Drama under the direction of a new principal, Mary Benzies. Professional weekly drama classes using the facilities at Tolethorpe are on offer as well as holiday workshops. To find out more, or to book a place visit www.tolethorpeyouthdrama.co.uk or email tyd@stamfordshakespeare.co.uk

NEW HAIR AND BEAUTY SALON Donna Marie Hair and Beauty in Foundry Road, Stamford, is establishing quite a reputation, despite only being in business for eight months. The salon owned by Donna Marie, who has 27 years’ experience in the industry, offers hairdressing and beauty services focusing on brows and lashes. “I can’t believe it has taken me so long to set up my own business, it’s the best thing I’ve ever done,” she said. At the moment there are two special offers; a brow wax and tint plus an eyelash tint for £28 and a brow wax and tint for £19. More offers and information are available via the Facebook page, Donna Marie Hair and Beauty. 01780 755984

8 O C T OBE R 2018 ///

SHOP OF THE MONTH

The Costume House The Costume House, formerly known as Sukie’s, has returned to its old home on North Street in Stamford. Owner Christine, who has been running the business for 22 years, says “by coming back to North Street we are now able to get all of our stock under one roof, which is a lot easier”. The Costume House specialises in costume hire, particularly for theatre and school productions, for both children and adults. They can provide single costumes, or for a whole show, bespoke, and will alter costumes to fit as well as hiring out fancy dress outfits. Hallowe’en is just around the corner so pop in for a suitably spooky outfit. www.sukiespartyemporium.co.uk


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Activelife

WHAT’S ON There’s lots going on in your area this month, why not try some of these? ● Hallowe’en and half-term are just around the corner so the pumpkins are out in force. Local organic farm Riverford holds its annual pumpkin day on October 27 at Sacrewell. You will be able to pick your pumpkin and carve it. There will be lots more to do including cookery demonstrations and tractor rides. www.riverford.co.uk

● Rutland

● Easton Walled Gardens is holding its Original Pumpkin Rolling Event between October 17-28. www.visiteaston.co.uk

● The

Bowthorpe Park Farm at Witham on the Hill is holding a Hallowe’en weekend on October 27-28. www.bowthorpeparkfarm.co.uk

● There’s lots going on at Stamford’s Corn Exchange this month including Patience, performed by the Stamford Gilbert & Sullivan Players, from October 10-13. Tickets are on sale now at the box office. 01780 766455. ● Coping With Pain: How to Live a Happy Life is a half-day meditation course being held at Stamford Arts Centre on October 14. And Buddhist nun Kelsang Rak-ma is hosting a meditation summer woodland retreat at Fineshade Wood near Duddington on October 20. www.meditateinpeterborough.org.uk

1 0 O C T OBE R 2 0 1 8 ///

Ploggers are holding their next session on October 6. Meet at 3pm at the Co-op car park in Oakham to join the group jogging and collecting recyclable materials along the way. A great way to combine looking after the environment and yourself. Find out more via the Rutland Ploggers Facebook page. Virtual Orchestra takes place at the newly-refurbished ISKCON Centre in Leicester from October 8 to November 17. This free experience gives you the chance to play along, virtually, with the Philarmonia Orchestra. www.philarmonia.co.uk/virtualorchestra

● Enjoy

an evening with public speaker and High Court judge Sir Alistair MacDuff at St John the Baptist Church in Harringworth on October 5. Tickets from 01572 747700 or 07858 504568 or harringworthv@gmail.com.

● Welland

Valley Art Society is holding its autumn exhibition at Stamford Arts Centre between October 1-13.

● The

band of the RAF Regiment, hosted by the Oakham branch of the Royal British Legion, will be performing at Uppingham School Memorial Hall on October 13 to launch the 2018 Poppy Appeal. www.wegottickets.com


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Nr Oakham | Rutland LE15 8AB www.barnsdalehotel.co.uk

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21/09/2018 10:18


Activelife

HELPING THE HEDGEHOG Anna Wood, a student studying biology at Nottingham, tells us how to help stall declining hedgehog numbers

My love of hedgehogs started as a child with a little hoglet (baby hedgehog) called Holly. Holly was an autumn juvenile, a baby hedgehog born later in the year. These babies often do not have enough time before the winter to put on the 500g needed to survive hibernation, so they need a little help from sanctuaries and carers. Holly was a lucky hoglet who, with extra food from my family and a stable to sleep in, was able to put on weight and get through the winter successfully. Helping one tiny hoglet encouraged me to learn more about nature, start studying biology at the University of Nottingham, and become a Hedgehog Street Champion. With the weather starting to cool we humans start looking forward to the beautiful bliss of autumn. But for the UK’s favourite (and only) prickly mammal, autumn can be full of hazards. With a decline of one-third in the past 10 years, it is not only autumn that these little garden visitors must worry about. Often named the ‘gardener’s friend’, hedgehogs are nocturnal and can travel up to 2km through gardens at night unnoticed. Chomping through creepy crawlies as well as slugs and snails, a hedgehog’s journey can also include deadly hazards created by humans, such as poisonous slug pellets, netting and steep sided ponds. After a tiring night, even sleeping can be a risky business. Hedgehogs can become the victim of strimmers and bonfires while taking a nap. But

most of these dangers can be avoided by making simple changes and working together as a community to make our areas more hedgehog friendly. So, what can we do to help these little national treasures? Remove hazards and don’t use poisons; check before lighting a bonfire or strimming. This can all help save a hedgehog’s life. Hedgehogs can thrive in both rural and urban areas. One way to discover if you have them in your garden is to put out food and then listen; hedgehogs are noisy eaters! If there are hedgehogs in your area, try putting out meaty cat food (no milk or bread) and water in shallow bowls to make them feel at home. You could also create a hedgehog highway; 13 x 13 cm holes (the size of a CD) between gardens that makes their nightly journey possible. Even if you don’t have hedgehogs locally you can still help by supporting, and donating, to hedgehog sanctuaries. I recently visited Dowsdale Hedgehog Sanctuary in Crowland,

near Peterborough, which is a local charity that cares for hoglets in need and hedgehogs who are unwell or injured, until they can return to the wild. If you find a distressed hedgehog you can call the British Hedgehog Preservation Society on 01584 890801 or look on their website for help. Contact www.hedgehogstreet.org www.britishhedgehogs.org.uk www.dowsdalehedgehogsanctuary.co.uk

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caring for your home Conservatory too hot in the summer and too cold in winter?

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New Builds • Commercial Sites • Established Gardens 26 MAIN STREET, EDMONDTHORPE, LEICESTERSHIRE, LE14 2JU E TERESA@VIRIDISDESIGN.CO.UK T 07726 334 501

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21/09/2018 10:26


Activelife

well, which will lift the traditional flat stretch of earth. Large rocks, contemporary sculptural work etc, give you a starting point from which to plant, and can tie everything together. A courtyard, rooftop or balcony space gives you the chance to use containers. Raised beds are the obvious choice but you can lose ground area and feel hemmed in. Instead, work with walls, verticals and overheads. Consider a concertina screen which gives masses of growing space, or a light framework over a seating area (think pergola-style) allows for hanging herbs, cherry tomatoes, anything on a vine. Utilise your up space rather than your down.

GARDENING

THINKING AHEAD Creating an outdoor area to become part of your home is an evolving task, and the autumn months are the perfect time to do it. Teresa Kennedy tells us how There is a lot to do in the garden during October and November, but you will reap the benefits of the hard work you do now come the spring. Firstly, I’d like to encourage you to introduce fresh grown produce into your outdoor space next year, whatever size you have. For ultimate success, start this month with the prepping of space and soil. As well as the pleasure of eating it, growing vegetables is a creative business, ever-changing and great fun. A garden patch for vegetables needs to be in a good, sunny, sheltered spot. It can be square, rectangular or circular, symmetrical, and you can then be artistic with your planting next year; but it doesn’t have to be, free-form could work better. Play with heights and structure as

BULBS October is when you need to start thinking about spring bulbs. For me bulbs serve two purposes; colour and gap-filling. When most perennials will be just getting going, bulbs will give you fabulous colour and fill bare patches in the months between February and May – and beyond. Nothing matches the beauty of a fresh, crisp narcissus blooming in March. By late April tulips will take over. My favourite way to display them is in containers, specifically a single group in red, just beautiful. For later colour, the showy fritillaria imperialis is a wonderful border bulb, eye-catching in yellow or orange. BARGAIN HUNTING Autumn is the perfect time of year to rejuvenate your outdoor space ready for next year. The soil is at its warmest, moisture is abundant, competition from weeds is lower and there’s still plenty of warmth in the air. These are ideal conditions for planting new beds and borders, and many nurseries and garden centres will be looking to get rid of stock so you will pick up bargains. www.viridisdesign.co.uk 07726 334501

NATURE

THE STARLING Starlings are usually seen on lawns and playing fields, scurrying around poking their bills into the ground as they search for slugs, worms and other invertebrates. They are very sociable birds, usually seen in flocks of varying sizes. Their black plumage is more spotted in winter. Juveniles, seen in May and June noisily following their parents, are a dull brown in colour. Although still widespread, starling numbers declined by a third across the East Midlands between 1995 and 2009. Possible reasons for this may include a loss of feeding habitat as lawns have been lost to patios and decking, and

permanent pasture, which supports many leatherjackets (a favourite food) has been converted to arable land. Nest sites have been lost as old buildings have been demolished, or renovated, and modern houses, with UPVC soffits and gutters, deny access into the roof space. This problem is easily solved by siting nest boxes just below the eaves, and has been done successfully in Oakham. In winter British starlings are joined by many thousands of birds from Europe and Russia. They fly west in tight flocks in October and November. Murmurations (the fabulous word to describe a flock of starlings) of several thousand preparing to roost have been seen over Egleton reserve and woods. Terry Mitcham

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Launde Abbey

Open daily for morning coffee, lunch and afternoon tea

Cyclists and walkers very welcome Why not start your walk or ride at Launde then reward yourself with a delicious lunch at the end? Visit our website for maps and routes at www.laundeabbey.org.uk Launde Abbey, East Norton, Leicestershire LE7 9XB T: 01572 717254 I E: info@launde.org.uk Charity No: 1140918

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Contact Details: For more information and to book your place please contact: Name: Active Rutland Health Email: activerutlandhealth@rutland.gov.uk Telephone: 01572 758200 Website: www.activerutland.org.uk

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Activelife

TRAVEL

FANTASTIC FALL FOLIAGE Visit the US to enjoy what the Americans call ‘foliage season’ Autumn is the season of ‘mists and mellow fruitfulness’ and is also the season of beautiful autumnal colours. The UK can offer some fantastic combinations of colours, but have you thought of visiting the US during the fall? Quite an aptly named season really. The views are breathtaking, with thousands of trees in all their autumn glory. Each state has its own glorious sights but many associate the north-east with the best foliage. Ash, hickory, maple and oak make for some picture postcard views. The Americans do autumn well; as well as foliage season they go pumpkin picking and Hallowe’en is a huge event. One of the best ways to see the magnificent foliage is to go hiking, another

pastime that is gaining more and more popularity and, as well as being very enjoyable, it’s also very good for you. All that hiking can justify some pumpkin pie at the end of it. You can virtually take your pick state-wise for some beautiful colours but if you want to combine your fall colours with a city break as well why not head to New York State? Spend a few days in the Big Apple and then head to the Catskills or the Adirondack Mountains for amazing views. The Catksills cover 6,000 square miles with 35 mountain peaks, so it’s an ideal place to go hiking to capture the fabulous autumnal colours of reds, oranges and yellows. Now is the perfect time to travel to see it at its best.

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Activelife

1 8 O C T OBE R 2018 ///


FOUR GO

GLAMPING

Mary Bremner and the Active girls enjoy glamping in the Northamptonshire countryside, try their hand at sausage making and get on their bikes ‘GLAMPING is a form of camping with accommodation and facilities more luxurious than those associated with traditional camping’ – a description that sounds much more appealing than bedding down in a tent in a sleeping bag on a mat on the ground. And what’s more you can go glamping almost on our doorstep at Country Bumpkin Yurts in Great Oxendon near Market Harborough; so we decided to find out a bit more about what glamping has to offer, and what lies just a short car drive away. The site is the brainchild of two childhood friends, Jenny Lyon and Lara Collis, who decided to bring glamping to the East Midlands. They invested in some traditional Mongolian yurts and situated them on Waterloo Cottage Farm, a 120-acre farm that rears livestock in Great Oxendon. Each yurt has great views across the farm and surrounding countryside, has its own log burner, is decorated with shabby chic furnishings and extremely comfy beds. You share rustic bathing (don’t worry, showers are hot), including a composting toilet and cooking facilities with the other yurts, as well as a wood-burning hot tub where you can enjoy the surroundings while relaxing, easing tired muscles and watching your neighbours – Highland cattle, pigs and sheep. The yurts have proved very popular with groups of friends, including hen weekends, families and couples as there is something for everyone – and the dog. To make it easier Country Bumpkin Yurts has joined forces with Waterloo Cottage Farm, which offers locally produced food and drink boxes from local shopping service edible16 at your request, including a barbeque box. A yurt is round and the lack of sharp corners really is relaxing, with a roof window allowing you to lie in bed looking at the stars. Our yurt slept six, but there was plenty of room with the beds arranged around the edges. Lying in bed

listening to the owls hooting and the cattle lowing was conducive to a good night’s sleep. The yurts are powered by solar energy and barbeques are provided along with a fire pit which makes for a great socialising area. We could have spent the day just relaxing in the hot tub, sitting around the fire pit and enjoying being in the countryside but, as we are from Active magazine, we decided we needed to see more of what the area had to offer. Our first port of call was a sausage making course. Sausage making Kirsty Clarke and her husband Angus bought Waterloo Cottage Farm about 10 years ago and have spent the years since working hard to produce free range, great tasting meat that is pasture fed and antibiotic free. This means the stock takes longer to mature, but the taste and health benefits more than make up for it. Kirsty has set up a fantastic farm shop and, as well as butchering on site, also runs workshops ranging from sausage and pork pie making, food and wine tasting to butchery courses. We were going to try sausage making. We were shown around the facilities, including the enormous, walk-in refrigerator where Kirsty explained that all their meat was hung for 28 days to enhance the flavour. We washed our hands, donned our aprons and got down to it. We were going to make traditional sausages for the Angel Hotel in Market Harborough – no pressure then! First of all we minced the pork, then mixed in the preservatives that were made up of dried potato, sage and salt and pepper, these preservatives help the sausages have a longer shelf-life, as does the chilled water which was also added. All Waterloo Cottage Farm’s sausages are gluten free. The mixture was then minced again to make the texture finer. Then it was loaded into the sausage maker, making sure that it was packed in firmly so there was no air. The skins were fitted on to the other end, and

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3 Star Lane, Stamford, Lincolnshire PE9 1PH

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01780 754737

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www.sowdenwallis.co.uk

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info@ sowdenwallis.co.uk

Hambleton Road, Stamford £245,000 This extended three bedroom semi-detached family home has been finished to a high standard by the current owners, including a stylish new kitchen diner to the rear. Located in a popular residential location which provides easy access to the town centre, A1 and the Malcolm Sargent Primary School. The accommodation comprises of an entrance hall, sitting room, kitchen diner, utility room, cloakroom, landing, three bedrooms and family bathroom. There is off street parking to the front for two cars, whilst to the rear is a west facing patio and lawned garden. Viewing highly recommended.

EMPINGHAM ROAD STAMFORD £209,950 This former two bedroom town house has been converted to a spacious one bedroom home and is located just a short walk from the town centre. The stone property comes with a spacious Master bedroom, large bathroom, and a garden room to the rear. The accommodation comprises: - Sitting room, kitchen, garden room, Master bedroom and bathroom. To the rear is a south facing garden which is split into two sections, with the first being lawn and the second featuring a good sized storage shed. Viewing is highly recommended.

Norfolk Square, Stamford £160,000 Situated in a cul-de-sac this three bedroom home offers good levels of accommodation and off street parking all within easy reach of the town centre. A spacious sitting room and well presented breakfast kitchen feature on the ground floor, with three bedrooms and a family bathroom on the first floor. The property has gas fired central heating and replacement windows. To the rear of the property is a long patio and lawned garden which is west facing. To the front of the property is graveled off street parking for two cars.

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BRACEBOROUGH £500,000 Set on a generous plot in the heart of the village, this Grade II Listed detached stone farm house offers plenty of potential, subject to planning, and comes with a separate stone outbuilding. There are many original features, including exposed stone walls and an inglenook fireplace. The village of Braceborough is situated approximately seven miles from Stamford, 15 from Peterborough and six miles from both Market Deeping and Bourne. The accommodation comprises: - Entrance hall, large sitting room, garden room, breakfast kitchen, utility room, shower room, family room, three bedrooms, family bathroom and a fourth bedroom/study which is accessed via a separate staircase. There is a driveway which leads to a gravel courtyard and the outbuilding to one side of the property, whilst to the other side is south facing mature garden with dovecote.

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are all natural, being pig or sheep intestines, depending on the size of the sausage you are making. Kirsty then showed us how to work the machine, using your knee to control the speed and your hands to pull the meat through in to the skin. She made it look simple; it wasn’t. There is obviously an art to this, and practice makes perfect, as does the twisting to make the ‘butcher’s links’ which are meant to make the linking process quicker and to make it easier to hang the sausages (and it looks pretty impressive). There was much hilarity, and the odd smutty joke with Kirsty joining in the fun, but we all managed to make (albeit with a lot of help and advice) a passable bunch of sausages. Credit must go to Amy, who proved to be a dab hand at it. And we thoroughly enjoyed it. Kirsty’s passion for all things meat, particularly sausages, shone through and rubbed off on to us. We were proud that our sausages were fit to go to The Angel (she did tidy the odd one up), but best of all, we cooked them for breakfast, and knowing we were eating our own handiwork made them even more delicious. Sausage making is a skill that should be tried by everyone, it’s great fun and we all had a great laugh, but we also learnt a lot about the process itself and, most importantly, also about the provenance of the meat. Kirsty runs courses regularly. Sausage making costs £30 per person and includes 12 sausages to take home. The Brampton Valley Way Country Bumpkin Yurts and Waterloo Cottage Farm are on the Brampton Valley Way, just a couple of miles out of Market Harborough, and 17 miles from Northampton, so we brought our bikes with us so we could do some exploring. We also decided to do some foraging as mid-September is the perfect time to pick

GLAMPING TIPS

blackberries, sloes and rose hips. It was fun getting on the bikes and making the most of the countryside. We elected to cycle towards Market Harborough, rather than the more ambitious distance to Northampton. The path is relatively flat, so the cycling was easy and there were plenty of blackberries. A wander around Market Harborough culminated in a spot of lunch and then a cycle back and an appointment with the hot tub. Glamping is to be recommended. I suppose some purists would pooh-pooh it, but you are getting back to nature, being self-sufficient and cooking your own food as well as going to bed as it gets dark and rising with the sun. The hot tub experience was all the more enjoyable as we had to heat the water ourselves, lighting the fire and keeping the wood topped up. I’m all for a bit of luxury and comfort, and if you can combine that with being outside enjoying the countryside, all the better. What we really appreciated, and you often forget, is what our area has to offer. Exploring nearby countryside can highlight some hidden gems, and a night away, even if it is less than an hour’s drive, is rejuvenating. Enjoying what is on offer locally is sometimes taken for granted, and we enjoyed having our eyes opened.

Take layers with you as it can get chilly in the evenings and mornings, so an extra jumper might come in handy. Also bring a raincoat. Wellies are a good idea, as dew covered grass can be damp. And rain is always a possibility. Take a torch. Solar panelled lighting and candles are all very well, and rather romantic in the yurt, but are not always practical when heading across the field to the eco-loo. Bring containers to collect berries if the time of year is right. Bring a book so you can enjoy the peace of being in the yurt surrounded by the countryside. Take binoculars for bird watching. Useful websites and costs www.countrybumpkinyurts.co.uk Prices start at £110 per night for two people for a minimum two night stay www.waterloocottagefarm.co.uk www.edible16.org.uk www.northamptonshireparks.co.uk

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MEET NIJ VIYAS Kate Maxim enters a new world of sheepdog training and trialling Active How did you get into sheepdog handling? Nij When I had my first dog, Oliver, the trainer I went to couldn’t help me properly, and I thought I could do it better. So I became a dog trainer myself, running classes for any breed and doing behaviour consultations. I got my first border collie in 1987. I started to specialise when I met a farmer called Gwyn Morgan in north Wales, totally by chance, and it changed my life. He encouraged me to work my dog and I found it fascinating. There was no going back. Active What’s the attraction of sheep dog trialling? Nij It gives me more insight into the dog, far more than with obedience or showing. Everyone knows border collies are intelligent, but it’s important to dig deep to find out what makes them so. Ultimately they’re a hunting machine so they have to be fast, have good eyesight and a good nose. They are predatory. My dog Mac had all those qualities but I found him very difficult to manage as we were working to different agendas. I wrote a book called Sheepdog Training and Trials and despite giving the answers to most problems in that book, I was finding it very difficult to succeed with him. Finally I decided the sensible thing was to let him do what he wanted, but that was hard because giving in to a dog, or a child, is usually a total no-no. As soon as I started to do the opposite to what was considered normal, things started to work. Whenever he gathered sheep he wanted to make a big statement and bring them to me as quickly as possible. But I wanted him, especially in competitions, to bring them in calmly and under control. Then one day, rather than asking him to stop, I didn’t. But he stopped, analysed the sheep within five seconds, and seemed to know they wouldn’t out-run him and responded to him calmly. A very valuable lesson was learnt and I started to win prolifically with him. For a dog to have that level of understanding of sheep was special.

has had his own way and he’s now the UK champion. Active What are the attributes of a top trainer? Nij I used to work as an education welfare officer and using psychology has always been vital to me with dogs, and children. There are a lot of similarities. You need confidence and calmness, as well as knowledge, which you can acquire if you’re prepared to ask. Gwyn and the guys in Wales were happy to give me advice and wish me well. Because I learnt in Wales I use Welsh commands – only five men do today. Originally most of the commands were colloquialisms from Scotland and the south, but we all have our variations. Some will say ‘come by’ and someone else will say ‘get by’ but both mean the same. Active Do you spend most of your time training other people? Nij I do, and they are mainly farmers. It would be cheaper to invest in a collie (top dogs can cost thousands) than employ two or three people to do their job. A dog, with a bit of guidance and nurturing, will go anywhere for you and give their life for you. A lot of farmers don’t realise what a talented dog they have chained up outside, and a lot of parents never know just how talented their children are. I’m impassioned that young farmers should be taught to handle a dog. There are people at the top of the tree who started off with a £50 dog, you don’t need pots of money to get started. A lot of people are fascinated by this world even if they don’t have sheep; that was me. But you’ve got to be willing to work hard, as it’s tough out there.

Active Are border collies good as pets? Nij Doing something with a collie is key. They need exercise and work, freedom and decision making. A lot of people have collies and have had bad experiences with them, but that’s probably because they are very intelligent and can defy you. Just because they’re defying you doesn’t mean they’re doing something wrong. Active What about the future? Nij I’m about to judge One Man and his Dog, which will be broadcast around Christmas time. I now have a flock of Scottish black-faced sheep but I need 10 acres to be able to train other people and allow a youngster to go off and use the sheep. I think about moving every day, but can’t as I do experience days with members of the public at Launde Abbey. Families, individuals and businesses come to work with my dogs. They learn about what I do, and how I work. Most people go away realising that it’s much the same as what they do in their office and how they manage their staff. Calmness, confidence, being logical, having an open mind and not pre-judging are all essential. I’ve often ignored advice over the years, but it’s important to trust yourself. Of course, sometimes I go stumbling in and fall flat on my face, but I learn from it. I far prefer dogs, and people, who will take a gamble and listen to their inner voice, than those who are afraid to make mistakes. Now I’m well known in the sheepdog world I think it’s important to share my knowledge. I wanted to be different; an Asian guy who trains a border collie in Welsh and wins the UK nursery final, is certainly that – I love it! www.sheepdog-training.co.uk

Active Was he a special dog? Nij Yes. Not all dogs are like him, but plenty are. Rather than trying to change a dog, I have learned to assess their individual skills and to try and work with them. In 2015 I bred Cody, who is the son of Mac. Every step of the way he

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Activelife

ACTIVE INFO

s ained its stock Gretton has ret e st on the villag and whipping po recorded use green. The last en a villager was in 1858, wh stocks for six was put in the g to pay a fine hours aer failin ss. for drunkenne

GRETTON AND ROCKINGHAM These two stunning villages are linked by the Jurassic Way as it traverses the southern side of the Welland Valley. By Will Hetherington Photography: Will Hetherington

Difficulty rating (out of five)

THE ROUTE

Park in Gretton outside the Blue Bell pub and the Baptist Church. The Jurassic Way is clearly signposted through Northern Close and within a couple of minutes you will be in the open country enjoying the big views out over the Welland Valley to the north and south. After a flat start you will soon descend under the railway. Once you’ve gone through the tunnel make sure you turn left almost immediately afterwards to continue on the Jurassic Way. You will then cross one of the two streams which run off the steep bank to the south to feed the Welland

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to the north. And after this first wooden bridge it’s a series of open fields, hedgerows and big views as you progress south west along the Jurassic Way towards Rockingham. Despite being a straight line on the map there are a couple of points where it’s not easy to spot the way through the hedge ahead, but persevere and you will find the way. You will eventually arrive at the top end of Rockingham village through Rockingham Landrovers, and you should take a look at the church while you are there. But the castle may justify a separate visit another time. If you want refreshment the Sondes Arms could not look more quintessentially English. I don’t usually recommend walks which aren’t loops but I have made an exception in this instance because the route back along the Jurassic

Way is just as beautiful as the walk out. And when you get back to the railway you can turn left instead of going under the railway and this path will take you on another route back into Gretton, so there is some variation.


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ESSENTIAL INFORMATION Where to park Outside the Blue Bell and the Baptist Church in Gretton. The Jurassic Way is well sign-posted through Northern Close. Distance and time Five and a half miles/two hours. Highlights Stunning views of the wide Welland Valley. Both Rockingham and Gretton are pretty villages. Lowlights It’s not a circular route but it didn’t bother me at all on this occasion.

Above Refreshments The Eleanor Cross in The Blue Bell and Geddington, onethe of just three of Hattonthe Arms in 12 Gretton original crosses still in and theexistence Sondes Arms in Rockingham. Difficulty rating Two paws. There isn’t anything challenging here. The pooch perspective There were some cows and plenty of pheasants around when I did the walk so make sure your dogs are under control. Otherwise this is a good dog walk with a couple of streams for cooling off and drinking from.

For your own safety and navigation make sure you have an OS map with you when you go out walking. You won’t regret it.

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Relax and enjoy a drink or two in our cosy snug and bar. We look forward to welcoming you soon…! Call now to Book…

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CASTLE BYTHAM AND MORKERY WOOD The beautiful old village of Castle Bytham makes a good base for this rural ramble, as Will Hetherington discovers

ACTIVE INFerlOooked

is ov Castle Bytham ry castle by an 11th Centu thing remains no t bu d, un mo ich was of the castle wh nry III destroyed by He in 1221.

Photography: Will Hetherington

Difficulty rating (out of five)

THE ROUTE

Park outside the Castle Inn in Castle Bytham and head west out of the village on the main road. The road descends quite steeply and when you reach Water Lane on the right you will see the footpath heading off through the hedgerow on the left. Take this path and head out across the field. You will soon find yourself going through the tunnel under the old dismantled railway line and continuing to head west on a clearly defined path through a sequence of arable fields. It feels fairly remote out here and you are unlikely to see anybody else as you pass the northern edge of

Little Haw Wood. At this point you are also right on the border of Rutland and Lincolnshire. Carry on past Little Haw Wood and you will come into Stocken Hall Farm. Be prepared for an assault on the senses though because there is a large slurry pit here. For the direct route back to Castle Bytham look for the path which heads north-east away from the farm, but if you want to explore Morkery Wood for a bit before you head back then keep going into the middle of the farm and take the track up into the woods. Morkery Wood is a popular dog walking spot and you can ramble around here as much as you like. But I would suggest returning south to Stocken Hall Farm to pick up the path back when you do want to leave. The path which runs north-east from Stocken Hall Farm flirts with the bottom edge of Morkery Wood before straightening out in an easterly direction through Potters Hill Farm and beyond.

It then crosses the dismantled railway before going down the side of a tennis court and joining Morkery Lane for the short walk back into Castle Bytham and the Castle Inn.

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ESSENTIAL INFORMATION Where to park Outside the Castle Inn in Castle Bytham. Distance and time Four and a quarter miles if you don’t go into Morkery Wood/an hour and a half. Highlights Pretty old Castle Bytham and the tranquility of this remote part of the countryside. Lowlights Slurry pit at Stocken Hall Farm. Lack of fresh water for the dogs. Refreshments The Castle Inn at Castle Bytham. Difficulty rating Two paws. It’s not a tough walk. For your own safety and navigation make sure you have an OS map with you when you go out walking. You won’t regret it.

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15 MAIN RD, GLASTON, RUTLAND, LE15 9BP BAR | RESTAURANT | HOTEL

The Old Pheasant Hotel in Glaston is situated in the picturesque heart of Rutland, providing the perfect escape for some relaxation.

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01572 822326

RESTAURANT TIMES:

MON - FRIDAY: LUNCH: 12 - 2PM DINNER: 6 - 9PM SATURDAY: LUNCH: 12 - 3PM DINNER: 6 - 9PM SUNDAY: ALL DAY DINING FROM 12 - 7PM SUNDAY ROAST FROM 12 - 4PM

Off the A47, this traditional grade 2 listed stonebuilt country pub with rooms attached is close to the market town of Oakham, Uppingham and Stamford. It is located just a stones throw away from Rutland Water Nature Reserve.

our lunch and dinner menu has some great pub classics along with some tantalising dishes sourced locally. The menu has been designed by our chefs. They have designed the menu to suit a variety of different tastes.

The well set out rooms have contemporary furnishings and decor, and come with free WiFi, flat-screen TVs, and tea and coffee making facilities. The hotel serves breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week. Breakfast is open to the public and

Whether your stay is for business or simply to relax and enjoy the beautiful surrounding countryside, our dedicated staff will take care to ensure your every need is catered for, leaving you to simply enjoy yourself and unwind.

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PETS

FRIGHT NIGHT Advice on keeping your pets calm during firework season from Oakham vet Catriona Laird With Hallowe’en and bonfire night fast approaching, it signals the start of a traumatic period for some pets. If you know your pet is likely to be anxious during the fireworks onslaught then a preemptive, preventative approach is going to help the most. Learning to recognise the early signs of fear and distress in your pet will enable you to calm them before they reach a state of complete terror. For instance, pacing, clinginess and trembling may indicate a mildly anxious dog, whereas hiding, whining and soiling can indicate a more severe state of fear. Most cats will try to escape scary situations – to avoid them bolting keep outdoor cats inside when you know there is going to be fireworks in your area. There are lots of steps you can take to reassure your pets and make your house into a safe haven: • Ensure there are plenty of hiding places in a calm and safe environment. Consider making a

den for your dog (under a desk or piece of furniture) with their bed and some favourite toys/treats available. Give them access to this in advance of any firework events so they are happy using it. Giving them a stodgy meal and long walk during the day will make them more likely to be sleepy. • When fireworks are going off ensure there is other background noise, such as the TV or radio, to distract your pet. • Enhance the ‘safe haven’ effect by using a pheromone diffuser, such as Adaptil (for dogs) or Feliway (for cats). These need to be started at least five days before firework season begins. They release synthetic versions of the chemicals produced by suckling bitches/queens that help to reassure offspring during nursing. • Use food supplements such as Zylkène, KalmAid and Oakham Vet Hospital calming aid for dogs. These contain L-tryptophan and the milk protein, Casein, which can promote

relaxation, provided they are started a few days before the predicted change in environment (we recommend starting Zylkène two weeks prior to fireworks starting). The key is to act normally and try not to reassure your pet too much – excessive reassurance will confirm their suspicions that they are correct to be scared. Similarly, do not punish them as this will just increase their state of anxiety. If you act normally during this time your pet is more likely to consider these noises to be normal and is less likely to panic. Oakham Veterinary Hospital offers free nurse clinics with its qualified veterinary nurses where you can discuss your pet’s firework phobia and find out about short and long-term solutions. Until November 31 it is offering 10% off all calming aids mentioned in this article. For more information or to book an appointment call 01572 722646.

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IT ’ S T H E B R I DA L CO U NTDOWN ! Planning your wedding and don’t know where to start? Stick with our handy countdown to the big day and you can’t go wrong. By Kate Maxim

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Every bride wants her wedding to stand out and be memorable (for all the right reasons). Despite every wedding having much in common – somewhere to hold it, something to wear, something to eat – each big day will have a very different feel. Weddings can be large and lavish, or small and simple, but one thing is for sure: they generally take a while to organise. To take the pressure off, we’ve come up with a checklist to use while counting down to the moment when you say ‘I do’...

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CHOOSE YOUR VENUE

Certain locations book up quickly, sometimes years in advance, so booking the place to hold your civil wedding or reception should be the first decision you make. But are you on the same page? The groom may be dreaming of a wedding in a castle, the bride may be happy to hold a reception in a room at her local pub. Like everything when planning a wedding, compromise will be essential. Launde Abbey is an Elizabethan/Jacobean manor house nestling in the Chater Valley near Oakham. With its own Church of England licensed chapel, 39 en-suite bedrooms, plus a limitation on the number of weddings held in any year, the happy couple can be assured of a very individual wedding day. You can choose to put up a marquee in the landscaped gardens or have a country house style wedding in the many period rooms in the abbey itself. Just as beautiful is Hambleton

Hall. Catering for weekday weddings, their food is second to none and they have fabulous accommodation for the guests to enjoy post-party. Another place where you’re guaranteed fantastic food is the Marquess of Exeter in Lyddington. Near Rutland Water is Barnsdale Hall Hotel, and for the ceremony itself there’s the iconic Normanton Church and Oakham Castle. Further south, near Market Harborough is Kilworth Hall which offers a choice of dining and rooms for either a small intimate day or a big celebration, including the Orangery, Knot Garden, the Shakespeare, Staging Post and the Cellar Bar. Just one mile from Rutland and a 20-minute drive from the centre of Leicester, Keythorpe Manor is another great location to celebrate in style. There’s a choice of the marquee or Oak Barn, both with views of the rolling Leicestershire countryside. And Tugby Orchards is another fabulous site for a marquee wedding with glamping on offer to extend the fun.

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ORDER YOUR OUTFITS

is to shop around. If you love a dress, go for it, providing you’re sure it suits you! Be aware that designer wedding dresses can take a few months to make, so give yourself plenty of time. The House of Anna Couture has taken on English wedding dress brand Chanticleer, moving it to Stamford and a new shop on High Street St Martin’s. Dresses under this label will be made on the premises by Anna’s talented team and a new capsule collection is currently being worked on. Anna also offers her bespoke wedding dress label. There are plenty of other local dress shops to choose from. Also in Stamford, with a branch in Peterborough, is the Wedding Room; there’s Martin Charles

Bridal Gallery in Oundle; Vow Bridal in Wansford; Wedding Belles in Kibworth Beauchamp and Bradgate Brides in Leicester, to name but a few. Once you’ve sorted the dress, it’s time to organise the groom, bridesmaids, ushers and mother of the bride. You may go for a theme or colour to tie it all together, and the men are set to be more adventurous next year with mismatching suits in checks, dots and florals, which is great news – it’s about time they shared more of the limelight. In addition to Anna Couture, Jeanne of Oadby and Private Kollection in Market Deeping are good places to look for mother of the bride outfits and luxury ladies wear for the guests.

Anything goes nowadays and co-ed weddings are growing in popularity. So it’s becoming less common to see all men on one side of the wedding photos and all women on the other. Best man, groomswomen, bridesmaid, bridesman – it’s all up for grabs now.

Choosing your wedding dress is usually the most exciting part of the wedding preparations. Brides can go to town on it, or keep it very low key. The most important thing

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Hambleton Hall is one of Britain’s finest country house hotels, overlooking Rutland Water the hotel provides the most wonderful setting for a Christmas Party. Log fires, a beautiful Christmas tree, sensational Christmas decorations and lovely bedrooms to rest your weary head. ‘The Study’ – one of Hambleton’s fabulous private dining rooms is perfect for Christmas parties of 6 to 16 guests. We are offering parties a Special Limited Choice Menu, Sunday to Thursday, £70.00 per person for 3 courses. (£90 per person for 4 courses)

At the end of the evening why not stay the night? If you would like to stay after your Christmas Party and book two or more bedrooms on a Sunday to Thursday, we are offering a special rate of £245.00 per night, based on 2 people sharing one of our Standard double bedrooms, including full Hambleton breakfast & vat.

Hambleton Oakham Rutland LE15 8TH

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t: 01572 756991

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MENU Pan fried fillet of Seabass with a bouillabaisse jus Terrine of Carrot with star anise ice cream Wild Mushroom raviolo with grappa *** Best fish catch of the day *** Poached fillet of Turbot with leek, potato & watercress Roast Guinea Fowl with artichoke & sweet corn Madeira jus Jacob’s Ladder, smoked potato, horseradish, red wine jus *** Tiramisu Almond soufflé with quince ice cream Terrine of Pear & Blackberry Caramel ice cream *** Coffee, Chocolates etcetera All menus are subject to a discretionary service charge of 12.5%

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Activelife

Caterers If the venue doesn’t include refreshments, it’s time to decide on an outside caterer. You could go for the full-blown sit down meal or have a selection of bowl food. One option is to hire an array of food vans serving anything from pizza and pulled pork to fish and chips and paella. The choice is endless, and obviously don’t forget the drinks... gin, prosecco and cocktail vans always go down well.

7

DECIDE ON YOUR MODE OF TRANSPORT

You could opt for a rustic look and arrive on a horse and trap; you may go to the other extreme and turn up in a helicopter. Or if you’re lucky and you live locally, it’s fun to walk. The more usual option, however, is a classic car. Hugh Illingworth from Classic Rolls and Bentley Hire in Oakham knows that choosing the right car is very important to the feel of the wedding, and he suggests it doesn’t have to be white. In fact, dark blue or black is a perfect contrast to a white wedding gown, and stepping into a cocoon of leather and varnished wood gives the wedding party a few minutes of calm before the real excitement of the day begins.

6

CHOOSE YOUR WEDDING SUPPLIERS

It’s the details that make each wedding unique. So in no particular order, it’s time to make decisions about these... Rings Even before the proposal someone needs to be looking at engagement and wedding rings. According to Tim from TJ Thornton Jewellers in Market Harborough, people buy rings at all times of the year but holiday times such as Christmas are very popular as couples have more time together to browse.

Stationery You can’t have a wedding without guests, so sending out save the day cards and wedding invitations in plenty of time is a vital element of the preparations. Spiegl Press in Stamford offers a completely bespoke service to suit all budgets. As Jo Spiegl points out, the bride and groom don’t come from a range, so why should their stationery? The benefits of a personalised service are being able to sit down in person, choose from a vast quantity of colours and board, take advice on fonts and whether you want your stationery embossed or debossed and, most importantly, to touch the paper stock so you know what quality you’re getting.

Flowers When it comes to the flowers, statement pieces are set to be a big trend in 2019 so think of extravagant floral arches or chandeliers. For grand plans like these you want a creative and capable florist. Pastels are still going to be popular but bright colours are also making an appearance, including purples, reds and orange. Photographer To capture each step of the day, you’ll need an attentive photographer and often drones are now being employed to catch the day from every angle. So there’ll be no hiding away in a quiet corner now during the speeches!

5

WRITE YOUR WEDDING LIST

4

BOOK YOUR HONEYMOON

Nowadays many couples will be living together before the nuptials and already own a toaster, sofa cushions and fragrant candles. If they haven’t, then the traditional wedding list is usually held at a department store, favourite local shop, or both. If the happy couple already have what they need they may ask for donations to a charity of their choice or, at the other end of the scale, financial help towards a honeymoon. Companies such as Buy our Honeymoon or Patchwork are easy to use and guests can specify what parts of the holiday they’d like to fund, for instance cocktails in Rome or dinner in New York.

On that note, it’s time to book the honeymoon and here, as the saying goes, the world is your oyster. This is the ideal time to do the activities you’ve always fancied doing with the partner you’re going to spend the rest of your life with. It could be a horseback safari, hot air ballooning over the desert or learning to snowboard in the Alps – depending on the time of year, of course. A relaxing break in the sun is still the preferred choice to soothe frazzled nerves after months of preparation, but many couples nowadays are booking ‘engagementmoons’ instead, so they get some R&R in before the chaos of the big day and while they’ve still got a little bit of money in their pocket.

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Activelife some accessories and games as an icebreaker, particularly if not everyone has met before. The Costume House in Stamford has a vast selection. It really is pointless trying to resist.

1

FINALISE THE FINISHING TOUCHES

The day is almost here and the excitement is mounting. In order for it to run smoothly, there’s a few more items to check off. Have you written your speech, practised your reading, polished shoes, bought cufflinks, sorted something borrowed and something blue, hired necessary portaloos or refrigerated trailers to keep your drinks cool? And last, but not least, to ensure a truly furrytail wedding, Barking Mad in Spalding can bring your pets to your wedding to take part in the fun, then they take them away afterwards and look after them during the honeymoon.

3

MAKE TIME FOR ‘ME TIME’

Hugely important in the run up to the wedding is ensuring everyone looks and feels as beautiful and relaxed as possible. For couples who can’t stay away from each other, Organic Ritual Beauty (ORB) in Uppingham offers a couple’s massage so they can lie side by side during the treatment. Indulgent body treatments are the perfect de-stressor before the big day, or as a thank you gift to bridesmaids and mothers. And it’s not just the women who are keen on being pampered. ORB also offers a MAN-oxide which is a total treat for busy male hands, tidying them to perfection and leaving them refreshed, smart and revived. That’s perfect for a hard working groom who may have his hands photographed on the wedding day! The Grooming Room in Market Harborough will also pamper the man of the moment from head to toe offering hot towel shaves, non-peroxide teeth whitening, waxing, facials and hair cuts. Oliver Lee Salon in Stamford also offers hot shaves and his team are well known for their styling and colouring services – perfect for both bride and groom. Not to be forgotten are the areas hidden under the wedding dress!

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The Granary Laser Clinic, situated in Tugby, offers a professional laser hair removal service, in time for the big day and beyond. And if you feel you want even more beautifying, Glen Eden Medical Aesthetics in Corby Glen specialise in non-surgical cosmetic treatments including dermal fillers and body sculpting.

2

ENJOY SOME FUN AND FROLICS

In the run up to the wedding, everyone wants a bit of fun to alleviate any stress, so a hen or stag party will always be on the list of ‘to dos’. It could be another excuse for some pampering and ORB is able to accommodate four to six ladies having a choice of two to three treatments each. They provide a bottle of bubbles, cake or croissants, orange juice and exclusive hire of the salon when booked on a Sunday or Monday. Guests also receive a 10% discount on all treatments during the pamper party, and it’s a great way of catching up and relaxing. One way for hens and stags to have some fun is to go glamping – Country Bumpkin Yurts just outside Market Harborough is one great venue, and if anyone needs help in getting into the swing of things, nothing beats a bit of fancy dress or, at the very least, buying

So that’s it, the big day has finally arrived and there’s nothing more to be done, except enjoy yourselves…

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Fo r business, fo r you, fo r life .

21/09/2018 09:18


ACTIVE BODY

Using physiotherapy to treat a painful shoulder, why low fat foods are often not what they appear to be, and advice on treating a slipped disc Edited by Steve Moody

WIN A FREE CONSULTATION with Bowen therapist Helen Mary Perkins followed by one treatment session (usual charge £50), plus a package of products worth approximately £50: Bexters soda crystals 800g Applicator wrap (knee/ankle) Bexters bath crystals 200g Bowtech Ease rollerball 10ml Visit www.theactivemag.com to enter. Closing date October 31.

THE FULL COMPLEMENT The initial complementary therapy consultation is critical, says awardwinning Bowen Technique therapist and instructor Helen Mary Perkins People seek out a complementary therapist for many reasons, very often when a painful condition worsens, or they simply get fed up with popping painkillers which simply mask the symptoms. It could be that other forms of conventional treatment are not always successful, or it can simply be the case that a person prefers a more natural approach. Personal recommendation plays a part and it is not unusual these days for a therapist to receive a GP referral. Whatever the reason, there is no doubt living with pain can be debilitating; be it sudden onset from accident or sporting injury or a chronic long-term condition. One

such condition is fibromyalgia, in the news recently after Desert Island Discs presenter Kirsty Young announced a break from her radio role to focus on her health. Hands-on therapy such as Bowen can be highly-effective in helping to manage pain (both on-going and short-term) with back, neck and shoulder problems responding particularly well. One client, dependent on disability benefit, reports less pain and improving mobility after being forced to give up a job he loves in engineering at the age of just 45 due to chronic lower back problems. The initial consultation is critical not only to trace the original source of the problem,

which may be causing pain elsewhere, but to gain a wider understanding of lifestyle and behaviours that might hinder recovery. This initial session can often prove cathartic to the client, an opportunity to ‘offload’ worries that might be exacerbating their physical problems. Examples might include work-related stress leading to headaches, insomnia, poor diet and low mood which can have a negative knock-on effect throughout the body. If we feel a holistic approach is appropriate, it is possible to recommend them to professional colleagues such as a medical herbalist or counsellor for additional support. While Bowen can target specific problem areas, complementary therapy takes many forms. As the name suggests, it can be used as a ‘complement’ or in addition to more conventional medical treatment. Often based on centuries of knowledge, such therapies should not be confused with ‘alternative’ therapy which, some would argue, has negative connotations. Please ensure your chosen therapist is properly qualified by searching the relevant professional organisation. Helen is a member of Bowen Therapy Academy of Australia and Bowen Association UK. For more information or to book an appointment call 01733 555476 or go to www.helenperkins.com

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Physiotherapy delivers a vast array of treatment techniques which help to restore and improve body movements and functions. Psychological health is enhanced by physical well-being and at Barn House Physiotherapy the treatment is as individual as you are. All Barn House physiotherapists are Chartered and State Registered with extensive experience in the treatment of musculo-skeletal problems and sports related injuries.

Barn House Physiotherapy Main Road Tallington Stamford Lincolnshire PE9 4RP T: +44 (0)1780 740242 F : +44 (0)1780 740586 E : barnhousephysio@btconnect.com W : www.barnhousephysio.co.uk

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ACTIVE BODY

SHOULDERING A BURDEN Active’s Lisa Chauhan tries to get the root of her pain at Barn House Physiotherapy After prolonged hard work in my mother’s garden I’ve pulled a muscle, which has become inflamed. Having put up with it for longer than I should have, I decided to pay a visit to an expert. When I first met Jacqueline Knox I immediately noticed her passion for physiotherapy which instilled confidence and put me at ease. Jacqueline’s background in elite sport and her path into physiotherapy was interesting to listen to. A local girl who attended Stamford High School, she studied at Leeds School of Physiotherapy and then went on to University College Hospital London to complete her basic grade rotations. Having junior level training in each section of the hospital environment gave her masses of experience. After all this, Jacqueline decided to travel to Australia and gain some experience there. Having spent time in Brisbane Royal Children’s Hospital, learning about paediatric and normal movement in babies, she returned to the UK and set up a sports injury centre at Bedford Hospital. It was there she had her eureka moment whilst watching some rowers and decided to give it a try. Not one to do things by half,

she won a place at Curtin University in Western Australia and was one of only two people selected from the UK to study for her post-graduate diploma in manipulative physiotherapy. It was here that she learned about manual therapy, core stability and muscle strengthening around the spine, and pilates. After all her hard efforts she managed to be part of the GB rowing team as a physio for nine years, and during the 2004 Athens Olympics she was a physio to the Olympians and introduced pilates to the GB rowing team. In 1996 Jacqueline set up Barn House Physiotherapy in Tallington while working at Peterborough Hospital. So with extremely capable hands, she tested the reflexes in my arms and hands and all seemed to be working correctly, apart from the area I’d been having trouble with. When she massaged the spot she kept asking me if it hurt and, to my surprise, it didn’t. Jaqueline explained it’s the nerves that surround the muscles that generate the pain; she was working on the muscle. She focused on my upper trapezius muscle in my neck, which was causing me all the pain. Jacqueline provided some subtle exercises

to work the muscles to help stabilise the shoulder blades, especially the lower trapezius. Apparently, I also need to work the deep neck flexors to encourage lengthening while extending my back. Performing the exercises regularly will help to release the tension in my muscles and strengthen weak muscles in order to support my skeleton. One exercise which has seen dramatic results is the diamond press so I will work on this and hope to see positive results. Focusing on my breathing is also fundamental to my recovery. The way we breathe can affect our stress levels and thus the tension in our necks. Sitting hunched at our desks further restricts breathing effectively, so part of my recovery will be learning to breathe more efficiently to help further reduce the tension in my neck. If you’ve got any aches and pains then I’d thoroughly recommend a visit to see Jacqueline at Barn House Physiotheraphy. Tel: 01780 740242 Website: http://www.barnhousephysio.co.uk Email: barnhousephysio@btconnect.com

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ACTIVE BODY

THE GREAT BIG FAT LIE Nutritionist Dawn Revens talks about how to manage fat, and how ‘low fat’ isn’t always quite what it claims to be Are you seriously confused about what you should and shouldn’t be eating as an endurance athlete? Should you eat low fat or high fat? Many of the clients I work with are in the 40-plus age group, which means they have grown up believing that if you eat high fat foods, you get fat and increase your risk of having a heart attack. To support this, the food industry has formulated and successfully marketed

4 2 O C T OBE R 2018 ///

reduced fat junk foods loaded with man-made synthetic substances such as artificial sweeteners, making us believe that they’re healthy. More recent data suggests that fat doesn’t make you fat or cause heart disease. The original study that started this flawed way of thinking (as well as a huge ‘diet’ food industry) was Dr Key’s Seven Countries study. He found that countries that ate more fat, especially saturated fat,

had more instances of heart disease. It now appears that he only presented the data that supported his theory and removed the data that didn’t. He then concluded that fat caused the heart disease. Just because these two events happened at the same time, doesn’t mean you can assume one caused the other. Lowering your saturated fat intake not only lowers your cholesterol but lowers your good cholesterol too. If you go ‘low fat’ then you will tend to eat more starch or sugar instead. This is what increases the levels of dangerous cholesterol LDL – the small, dense cholesterol particles that increase the risk of heart attacks. In fact, a recent study showed that 75% of people who end up in hospital with a heart attack have normal overall cholesterol levels. However, what heart attack victims do have in common is pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes, usually caused by eating high levels of refined carbohydrates for many years. Subsequent reviews of the research by the British Journal of Medicine shatter the myth that fat causes obesity and heart disease, and then the spotlight switched to sugar. My personal view is that it isn’t just fat or just sugar that causes heart disease, obesity and diabetes. It is when they are both combined into highly processed foods and then sold to us using seductive marketing. When we eat these foods, the body finds it hard to recognise them as they are so different from the unrefined versions. Our body becomes confused and loses its in-built nutritional wisdom. This is made worse by the fact that these foods also cause huge surges of dopamine, a neurotransmitter that activates the reward centres of the brain receptors, driving addictive behaviour and meaning you eat more of the wrong foods. An occasional treat isn’t going to do any harm; however, my advice would be that for 90% of the time make sure you eat for health and performance. That means staying away from highly refined and processed foods where refined sugars and fat are combined, confusing your body. You won’t get the nutrients you need from these for energy production, muscle repair and rebuilding, and a strong skeleton. Stick to good quality nutritious fats such as nuts and seeds, avocados and olives and the healthy carbohydrates found in vegetables and fruit and you won’t go far wrong. Dawn Revens is The Compeater, and works with endurance athletes to optimise their nutrition so they can get amazing training in racing results. Her blogs will inspire you and give you some easy to implement things that you can take action on so that you have a fantastic race season this year.


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AROHA BEAUTY HOUSE HAS CHANGED! We have loved the last 2 years as Aroha, but felt it was time for a change... and a name easier to pronounce! To celebrate our change, welcome you back and thank our lovely clients for their loyalty and ongoing support, we are offering 25% off all treatments on our new treatment menu, to all those who have visited us in the last 6 months, on their first visit back with us! organicritualbeauty

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21/09/2018 10:22


ACTIVE BODY

DISCOGRAPHY Dr Hany Elmadbouh, lead consultant at Avicenna Clinic, discusses slipped discs and what can be done if you have one Spinal discs are also called intervertebral discs. There is a spinal disc between each bone (vertebra) in your spine which keeps the vertebrae separated and acts as a shock absorber. A spinal disc is a little like a jelly doughnut, with a softer centre (nucleolus pulposus) encased within a tougher exterior (annulus fibrosus). Disc herniation, sometimes called a slipped disc, is displacement of the disc nucleus pulposus, parts of the annulus fibrosus and cartilage, beyond the limits of the intervertebral disc space. Disc herniation is most often the result of a gradual, age-related wear and tear called disc degeneration. As you age, your spinal discs lose some of their water content, making them less flexible and more prone to tearing or rupturing with even a minor strain or twist. Some people are more prone to disc herniation than others. Being overweight causes extra stress on the discs in your lower back. Those with physically demanding jobs requiring repetitive lifting, pulling, pushing, bending sideways and twisting have a higher risk of a herniated disc and some people inherit a predisposition to developing it. Most people can’t pinpoint the exact cause of their herniated disc and you can have a herniated disk without knowing it.

A herniated disc can irritate nearby nerves and result in pain, numbness or weakness in an arm or leg. The most common nerve pain caused by disc problems is sciatica – where the affected disc presses on your sciatic nerve, causing pain radiating into your leg. This nerve travels from your spine to your hip and buttock and down your leg. The pain can be sudden and sharp, and move down the nerve to your leg and sometimes down to your foot. Just below your waist, the spinal cord separates into a group of long nerve roots (cauda equina) that resemble a horse’s tail. In rare cases, disc herniation can compress the entire cauda equina. If this happens emergency surgery may be required to avoid permanent weakness or paralysis. Depending on your symptoms and signs you may need imaging by an MRI scan (magnetic resonance imaging) to confirm the diagnosis and decide on the best treatment. This will be essential if your symptoms suggest cauda equina compression. The outlook of disc herniation is good for most people. Many people experience no symptoms from a herniated disk. For those who develop symptoms, the initial treatment is usually an anti-inflammatory

pain killer and advice about simple back exercises to keep you active and mobile. If the pain or any restrictions caused by the problem with your back last for more than one to two weeks, the treatment options include physiotherapy and referral to a specialist for an epidural or nerve root corticosteroid injection if there is associated sciatic pain. A nerve root injection is a selective injection of drugs (usually a combination of steroids and local anaesthestic) around a specific nerve as it leaves the spine. Steroid is an anti-inflammatory medicine. The injection is performed in order to get drugs, such as steroids, as close to the nerve roots as possible. It serves two purposes – one is diagnostic to isolate the nerve causing the pain, while the second is to reduce the pain and nerve swelling. Many prolapsed discs shrink and heal and thus potentially avoid surgery. In some selective cases, surgery to remove the herniated disc may be required. Some people will continue to have pain for longer than one year and sometimes much longer. This tends to be worse for people who initially have more severe pain and have a greater restriction of daily activities. Pressure on the nerves may cause permanent nerve damage. The pain and restrictions may lead to psychological and social problems – for example, depression and being unable to continue with socialising and hobbies. The pain and restrictions may also prevent you from working. If this happens, you may require the support of a pain management consultant and a psychologist. You can help prevent suffering a herniated disc by undertaking regular exercise to strengthen the trunk muscles to stabilise and support the spine and by maintaining a good posture and a healthy weight. Avicenna Clinic specialises in spinal condition and back pain. The clinic has a range of specialist consultants, operating theatre for surgical procedures and superior in-house imaging facilities – including state-of-the-art MRI, ultrasound and X-ray scanning equipment. To book a consultation or for more information, telephone 0330 202 0597.

/// O C T OBE R 2018 4 5


Open Morning Saturday 27th October | 9.30am-12.30pm

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Your child’s f ive-year journey to success starts here Applications for our popular school are now being taken for September 2019 Manor High School welcomes students from Oadby, Leicester and Leicestershire to study at our friendly school. We celebrate and benefit from a rich cultural diversity within our school community. If you would like your child to join our thriving, ethos-driven school, with excellent academic outcomes, apply via www.leics.gov.uk/admissions by 31 October 2018.

Experience for yourself the “Magic of Manor” at our Open Mornings  Discover our unwavering focus on academic excellence and progress for every child  Learn about our strong values, curriculum and school community  Speak to our current students and staff about school life  Experience the deep mastery in subjects that are right for your child  Meet our outstanding pastoral team who support and develop the whole child  Find out about our school bus which caters for families from further afield

Open Mornings run every Tuesday and Thursday at 9.00am Book online now at: www.manorhigh.leics.sch.uk

Copse Close, Oadby, Leicester LE2 4FU Telephone: 0116 271 4941 Email: admin@manorhigh.leics.sch.uk Website: www.manorhigh.leics.sch.uk Twitter: @ManorHighSchool Facebook: @ManorHighSchoolOadby

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ActiveKids Scary cycle rides, a new local netball league and what being an overbearing parent could do to your children Edited by Steve Moody

Helicopter parenting? The signs… You spent two days perfecting a scale model of the Eiffel Tower for your six-year old’s school project on France. And didn’t let your child near it. ● Your son practices 100 penalties a night in the garden against you, in case he has to take one in the final of the 2038 World Cup. ● You count the number of strokes your children brush their teeth with each day, and tick them off on a wall chart. ● You harangue your toddler because he’s just banging keys on his toy piano with a hammer rather than properly trying to play Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata. ● You banned your child from playing with the next-door neighbours’ kid because she likes Barbies rather than books. ●

ARE YOU A HELICOPTER PARENT? Research has found that kids of ‘helicopter parents’ who constantly tell them what to do, stand over them while they do homework or make them practice skills they don’t want to, are more at risk of emotional problems in later life. A study by the University of Minnesota, published in the journal Developmental Psychology, found that over-controlling parenting can negatively affect a child’s ability to manage his or her emotions and behaviour. “Helicopter parenting behaviour we saw included parents constantly guiding their child by telling him or her what to play with, how to play with a toy, how to clean up after playtime

and being too strict or demanding,” said Nicole Perry, lead author of the study. “The kids reacted in a variety of ways. Some became defiant, others were apathetic and some showed frustration.” Over-controlling parenting when a child was two was associated with poorer abilities to control emotions and behaviours at age five, the researchers found. By age 10, children who had been left to discover ways of coping rather than being told exactly what to do all the time were less likely to experience emotional and social problems and were more likely to do better in school.

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Activekids

TRIATHLON TITLE FOR TOM

NETBALL MINI-LEAGUE LAUNCHES LOCALLY Stamford & Rutland Junior Netball Club (SRJNC) is launching a mini-league to take place this November. Currently, juniors who want to play competitive netball on a regular basis must travel as far as Lincoln or Cambridge to be part of a league. SRJNC wants this to change for young netballers and their parents, and to help build a term time junior league for Stamford & Rutland, it will be running a High 5 league taking place over the four Sunday mornings in November. SRJNC chairperson Tina Sayers said: “Netball is a sport that has gained massively in popularity over the past few years, and our area needs to cater for the growing demand for junior competitive matches. “Parents who want to support their children’s love of the game have to travel miles outside of the county to find competitive fixtures, but we want to give Stamford and Rutland a junior league of their own.”

Tina and the SRJNC committee hope that the mini-league will help to launch a permanent junior league for local youngsters. The November Mini-League will run with the England Netball High 5 format and rules, and age groups will include U10 and U12. Already SRJNC has confirmed entries from junior netball clubs from Stamford, Yaxley and Bourne as well as local primary schools, and would welcome enquiries from other local clubs or schools, or even groups of friends who want to form a team. Registration is £20 per team (teams of up to nine players – girls and boys – can be formed as the High 5 format works on a rotation basis). SRJNC is keen to stress that this league is for everyone. “We passionately believe in sport for all and by launching this mini-league as well as providing a competitive league we hope to develop children’s love for sport and exercise, foster team spirit and have fun,” added Tina. For more details contact Tina Sayers on 07789 923960 or email srjnetballclub@gmail.com.

ATHLETIC SUCCESS FOR EVAN An Oakham School athlete represented England at the SIAB (Schools International Athletic Board) International Track and Field Championships, claiming a silver medal in the 200m as well as a gold in the 4 x 400m relay race. The competition was held near Edinburgh and Evan raced against top competitors from Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. Evan qualified to represent England by

winning silver in the intermediate boys’ 200m in 21.85s at the ESAA (English Schools Athletics Association) Championships held at Birmingham in July. “This is another amazing achievement for Evan,” said the school’s director of athletics Trefon Vandoros. “Competing against other elite athletes at an international level was a fantastic experience and we are all incredibly proud of him.”

Tom Hattee has been named as the UK’s best triathlete in his age group after winning the top triathlon national championship for youngsters (TriStar3: 13/14 Yrs) in Mallory Park, Scotland. The event, in which 13 regions in the UK are represented, marks the peak of the competitive season for 11-14 year olds and acts as the first rung on the elite pathway ladder. Tom’s swift transitions helped him to hold off his rivals to secure the win in the TriStar 3 men’s race in a time of 25:51. Tom, who represents Stamford School and the East Midlands, adds this title to his national ‘high performance drafting’ race held in July at Eton Dorney. Tom said: “From my perspective, on the swim I was pushing it hard to come out in the top 10, didn’t think I was going to get the first bike pack but I held on and got to the leader, who was one lone rider, and I just went from there and just pushed it as hard as I could especially out on the run. I just can’t believe I came first, I’m gobsmacked!”

GYMNASTICS WIN FOR DAISY Daisy Fox was crowned Cambridgeshire County Champion having competed earlier this month representing Huntingdon Gymnastics Club. Daisy, a Stamford High School pupil, added two gold and two bronze medals for her performances on the floor, bars, vault and beam respectively.

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20/09/2018 18:53


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Activekids

ROCKBLOK AT HALF-TERM Put the fun into your child’s school holiday with Rockblok October Half Term Activity Club at Whitwell, Rutland Water. Fun-packed days for children from eight years old will include climbing, high ropes, den and shelter building, team challenges, crafts, adventure games, soft archery and more. The Rockblok Team are DBS checked with the appropriate first aid qualifications. Rockblok October Half Term Activity Club will run from Monday, October 22, to Friday, October 26, from 8.30am to 4.30pm (pick up at 5pm). The cost is £30 per day with a discount available when booking three days or more. www.rockblok.com.

HOCKEY STARS OF THE FUTURE Two Stamford School boys, Eddie Harper (Y12) and James Mayhew (Y11), were selected to represent the school at the England Hockey Futures Cup held in St. Albans in August. Eddie represented the Saxon Tigers U17s team while James Mayhew represented the Pennine Pumas U15s team. Both James and Eddie reached the final of their respective tournaments. Eddie scored the opening goal against Pennine Pumas U17s, who finished victorious in a gripping 5-1 final. As a result, Eddie Harper has been chosen to represent England at U18 level.

SPOOKY CYCLING Rutland Cycling is putting on a spooky bike trail between its Whitwell and Normanton stores this half-term. All you need to do is pick up a trail leaflet from store and start the hunt for clues. Bike hire is available at Whitwell and Normanton and the trail runs from Saturday, October 13, until Sunday, October 28. Cost is £1 per person and is a charitable donation to Sue Ryder Hospice Thorpe Hall. www.rutlandcycling.com/rides

RUTLAND RACER TEDDY IMPRESSES IN THE USA Young Rutland racer Teddy Wilson continued to impress in the penultimate meeting of the F4 US Championship by adding another second-place to his tally. Hot on the heels of his multiple podiums at Pittsburgh and Mid-Ohio, Teddy looked a formidable contender from the start at New Jersey Motorsports Park (NJMP). Against a 31-strong field, the 17-year-old rookie singleseater driver posted a new qualifying record to secure pole position for race one. He also claimed the Cameron Das Fast Qualifier Award, having broken Das’ NJMP qualifying record set in 2016. As Storm Florence wreaked havoc further down the East Coast of America, rainy conditions had greeted the drivers for Friday’s practice sessions on the 12-turn Thunderbolt circuit. But the skies cleared and the weekend’s racing conditions were dry and hot. In race one, Teddy started on pole and retained the lead after a good start. With some quick drivers chasing, he was unable to

Teddy is presented with his second-place F4 US Championship trophy maintain his lead and dropped to second behind Jose Blanco. Next month, Teddy will be racing before the Formula 1 United States Grand Prix in Austin, Texas.

PRECIOUS CARGO AT NURSERY The Children’s Garden in Stamford has found a greener alternative to the bus for transporting its children on outdoor activities, and has purchased three Winther Cargoo trikes. The trikes are designed and built in Denmark where cycling to and from school is a regular activity. The pod at the front over the two wheels has a roll-cage and four seats each with a three-point harness. For additional safety the children wear helmets. There is a battery-assist to provide the adult with the extra oomph when needed. The nursery’s Ed Kenyon said: “The children now see the journey to Forest School as part of the experience; smiling, laughing and able to see parts of the local area in a different way. We can also stop and explore along the way.” www.stamford.tcgnrsery.co.uk, 01780 752094

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“A clear-eyed, energetic, forward-thinking school” - The Good Schools Guide

Nurturing

Bright Young Minds

Call us to book an Open Morning or arrange an individual visit

Since 1584

We are a fully co-educational boarding and day school for 10-18 year olds, offering the IB Diploma and A-levels We look forward to welcoming you

To organise a visit please get in touch with our admissions team: admissions@oakham.rutland.sch.uk 01572 758758 www.oakham.rutland.sch.uk

2016-17 WINNER Headmaster of the Year

2015-16 Runner Up School of the Year

Prep School DARK BLUE PANTONE 294 CMYK: 100c/60m/0y/20k

LIGHT BLUE PANTONE 283 CMYK: 35c/6m/0y/0k

Boys & Girls, age 4-13 Boarding & Day Feeder school to Oundle, Uppingham, Oakham, Eton, Rugby, Repton & others Witham Hall, near Stamford withamhall.com

Private tours available by request

To register your interest: 01778 590222 or admissions@withamhall.com

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Church Street, North Luffenham, Rutland, LE15 8JR office@northluffenham.rutland.sch.uk www.northluffenham.org 01780 720184

OPEN MORNING THURSDAY 4TH OCTOBER 9.00 -12.00 “The school provides my child with a positive, happy, inspiring learning environment.” (Parent to Ofsted, 2018)

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ACTIVE SPORT The secrets of shooting, Active readers’ challenges, a great cycling route, plus six pages of local sport action

Game, set and slanging match Tennis has been damaged by the behaviour of Serena Williams in the final of the US Open, but for Martin Johnson she is not the only one at fault

T

he human race is forever searching for a magical formula to reverse the ageing process, but the answer is right in front of our eyes. And you won’t find it in a bottle at Boots. All you have to do is to become a professional tennis player, and you’re more or less guaranteed to become a child again. The latest example of a kindergarten tantrum being thrown on a tennis court came in the final of the US Open at Flushing Meadow from Serena Williams, who threw so many toys out of her pram that the fallout area around the umpire’s chair looked like Santa’s grotto. If you behave like this when you’re five years old, you get sent to your room. If you’re a 37-year old woman tennis player, on the other hand, it is close enough to normal behaviour for most of the resulting opprobrium to be directed not at her, but the umpire. Oh, and an Australian newspaper cartoonist who was condemned as racist for depicting Miss Williams in an unflattering light. Which is what satirical cartoonists have always done. I don’t recall any similar howls of protest when Spitting Image dressed Margaret Thatcher’s puppet in a pinstriped suit, and had her answer calls of nature not in the customary female position, but standing in the gents. However, tennis has a long history of making excuses for the juvenile behaviour of its players, which, of course, only conspires to make them even more juvenile. For the record, Miss Williams’ impersonation of Violet Elizabeth Bott (“I’ll thcream and I’ll thcream till I’m thick”) involved describing the umpire as a “thief” and a “liar” after deeming her to be the beneficiary of illegal coaching (which her coach afterwards admitted to) and docking her a point for smashing a racket. Men don’t get picked on for this kind of thing, she ranted, and if the hapless official needed any further proof that she wasn’t a cheat, she informed him, with the curious implication that being a mother was the ultimate character reference, that she “had a daughter”. The overwrought diva also informed him “you will never be on another court of mine as long as you live”, a threat for which she has previous, when addressing a line judge in the 2009 US Open, adding: “ I will look for you, I will pursue you, I will find you and I will kill you”. There’s more. “ I swear to god, I’ll (effing) take the ball and shove it down your (effing) throat. You are blind, a moron, and should be unemployed.” Very ladylike. Tennis is a sport so cocooned from the real world, and wrapped up in its own bubble, that the people who inhabit it rarely see anything wrong with this kind of behaviour.

Thus, before that poor Japanese girl even had a chance to celebrate her victory, Williams’ apologists were queuing up to exonerate her. Predictably, the first to get stuck in was the WTA, a body which would attract more sympathy for tackling sexism if it didn’t pursue its cause with the illogical zeal of those medieval witchfinders, who’d cart you off to be drowned if you had a speech impediment, or owned a cat. Its chief executive issued a statement which read: “There should be no difference in the standards of tolerance provided to the emotions expressed by men and women and is committed to working with the sport to ensure that all players are treated the same. We do not believe that this was done.” The president of the United States Tennis Association, Katrina Adams, then chimed in to condemn “double standards” followed by, get this, a tribute to Miss Williams for her “class and sportsmanship”. Next up was Billy Jean King, “the umpire blew it”, and then Novak Djokovic, who said that it was the umpire’s fault for “pushing Serena to the limit”. Ye gods, no wonder this sport is awash with prima donnas. Of both sexes. Mind you, it’s tough for them to regard themselves as ordinary when you put people like Jim Courier in charge of post-match interviews. This man is so sycophantic, it’s a miracle he doesn’t drown in his own saliva. Roger Federer, whose entrances often have more in keeping with a Milan catwalk than a tennis match, is clearly pleased enough with himself not to need his ego massaging, but Courier had even him close to blushing at the Australian Open a few years back. Rog had just seen off the world No. 500 in straight sets, which Courier took to be the kind of miracle right up there with Moses parting the Red Sea. “Tell me, can you cook?” was his opening gambit, but before Rog could tell him that he made a mean omelette, Jim followed up with: “Do you make your own bed?” But while Rog tried to recall when he last fluffed up his own duvet, Jim hit him with the punchline: “Is there anything the Fed can’t do?” And Andy Roddick was another one lost for words when Jim’s interrogation began with: “Just what it is that makes you so hot?” No wonder these tennis players have such an inflated opinion of themselves. And think it’s perfectly normal behaviour to hurl verbal abuse at officials. Interestingly, there is one common denominator with these outbursts, as was the case with Miss Williams... they always happen when they’re losing.

Martin Johnson has been a sports journalist and author since 1973, writing for the Leicester Mercury, The Independent, The Daily Telegraph and The Sunday Times. He currently writes columns for The Rugby Paper and The Cricket Paper, and has a book out called ‘Can I Carry Your Bags?’

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Feature /// Shooting

THE SECRETS OF THE SHOOT Even if you don’t head out into misty fields to shoot game, there are plenty of ways to enjoy its many benefits. We highlight the best eating, training, clothing and places to start

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WHERE TO EAT If you’re looking for great game dishes locally this autumn, see if you can tick all these off this season... The Cholmeley Arms, Burton Coggles The Cholmeley Arms is an awardwinning country pub set in an acre of grounds in the centre of a pretty conservation area that has been a favourite haunt of shooting parties for years.

WHY YOU SHOULD BE GAME FOR GAME Want to know what’s so good about game? The organisation Taste of Game (supported by the British Association for Shooting and Conservation) has a fantastic website at www. tasteofgame.org.uk that offers advice, recipes and places to eat this locally-sourced, healthy and sustainable meat.

Here are its eight top reasons why you should go for game: 1. It is healthy Game meat is one of the healthiest meats available, being very low in fat and cholesterol, and as it comes from the wild, it is lean too. The fat in game meat is rich in Omega 3, making it one of the healthiest sources of good fat. It is also very high in iron and contains higher levels of many beneficial nutrients including vitamin E, beta carotene, zinc, vitamin B(6) and selenium. 2. It is wild and natural Game is harvested from natural landscapes such as forests, farm land and moorlands, which means their diet is natural. This diet gives game meat its distinctive delicious taste.

3. It is hormone and additive free All game is hormone free, with no growth hormones added as their diets are natural. Wild game such as venison, rabbit, pigeon and grouse are antibiotic-free. 4. It is good for the countryside and wildlife The wild game industry plays a fundamental role in managing the populations of game in the UK; without the work of estates and the game industry, populations would increase to unsustainable levels. It has positive effects on the ecology of our landscape. The management of deer ensures woodlands are not destroyed or damaged, and crops sown give game birds shelter and natural foods benefit other wildlife including skylark, lapwing and corn bunting. 5. It has low carbon miles As these animals are not intensively farmed and are often locally sourced, the carbon footprint of the game industry is relatively small, with very few miles from field to fork. 6. It is easy to cook Game meat is lean so it must not be overcooked, which means unless you are using a tougher cut or planning a casserole it is quick to cook. For some great recipes to try have a look at the Taste of Game website – www.tasteofgame.org.uk.

Barnsdale Lodge, Oakham A well-deserved reputation for excellent dining and passion for local produce, all created under the watchful eye of executive head chef David Bukowicki, using high-quality, seasonal ingredients. The Olive Branch, Clipsham A well-deserved reputation for some of the best food around, using local and seasonal produce, some of which is grown in its kitchen gardens or foraged from surrounding hedgerows, woodlands and fields. Hambleton Hall, Oakham Aaron Patterson has set the standard in the region for food, sourcing locally and then delivering a gourmet experience. It has the longest retained star in the UK, having held a Michelin star since 1982. The Berkeley Arms, Wymondham Set in the heart of the Midlands countryside, in a beautiful 16th century building, The Berkeley Arms creates a friendly, warm welcoming environment to enjoy delicious food. Thanks to Charlotte Coups of Schofell UK, Oakham, for her top tips of where to eat great game locally.

FANCY HAVING A SHOT? Shooting might seem a difficult sport to get in to, not least if you haven’t been invited to a shoot and don’t own a gun. But help is at hand because the newlyrelaunched Grimsthorpe Shooting Ground caters for exactly those people who would like to have a go, even if they never have before. Run by Sophie Coups, there’s a stunning brand new clubhouse, which not only serves as a base before your day blasting clay, but also offers tea, cakes, lunches and dinner, even if you’re going nowhere near a gun. As Sophie says: “We are looking to turn this into a destination for everybody, whether you’re just after a spot of lunch or a full day’s shooting. We cater for experts

looking to improve their technique to stag and hen parties looking for a fun day out, rounded off with a meal. “At first, getting into shooting can seem intimidating, but not here. We are set up to make it as welcoming and easy to have a go as possible.” On the shooting side, family-run Grimsthorpe offers tuition for everybody, from children to adults, beginners to experts, individuals and parties in its stunning grounds. For more information on what is on offer email info@ grimsthorpeshootingground.co.uk or telephone 01778 591128.

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www innerwolf co uk online and in-store

OPEN DAY

Healthy

20th October 10-5pm

Pop in for a glass of bubbly and exclusive offers

Clear Start

Puppy Pack Clear Ridge Veterinary practice aims to help your new puppy settle in as quickly as possible and to help with this very important time in their lives. Take a look at the details of our ‘Clear Start Puppy Pack’. This starter pack caters for all of your puppies needs and includes vaccinations, health assessment, flea treatment, worming treatment, microchip, nurse appointments, information folder and free insurance*. We also offer great discounts off future consults and treatments.

from the

Inside Out

The Clear Start Package covers all of your young puppy’s essentials for three months: • First full course of standard primary vaccinations - We offer Lepto 2 vaccinations. We recommend puppies are vaccinated from 8 weeks of age. The course consists of 2 vaccinations given either 2-4 weeks apart. Your puppy will then be vaccinated against Canine Distemper, Hepatitis, Parvo virus and Para-influenza virus and Leptospirosis. Yearly booster vaccinations will then be recommended to maintain immunity. • A general health check - You will have a 20 minute consultation with one of our vets which will enable you to discuss any questions or problems you may be experiencing.

• Nurse consultations - As your puppy grows and develops into a young dog, you are sure to have questions. Our nurses will be there to help and advise you along the way. They can discuss: Diet, weight, suitable play/ toys, behaviour & training tips, exercise requirements, preventative dental care and neutering. • • • •

One worming treatment One flea treatment Microchip 10% off subsequent flea & worming treatment for 1yr • 10% off 1st annual booster vaccination (at 12 months) • 10% off your next consultation • 4 weeks free insurance*

All for just £50.00. For more information or to discuss any part in more detail, please call and speak to any of the Clear Ridge Team at our Stamford practice: Tel 01780 764333 or Orton Wistow Tel: 01733 230000

www.clearridgevets.co.uk

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Feature /// Shooting

SECRETS OF THE SHOOT

DOG TRAINING Gundog training expert Mike Barnes explains how to turn your pet into an obedient, beautifully trained dog You don’t have to go shooting to own a gundog and, in fact, the vast majority of the UK’s most popular gundog breeds are pets. But most of the basic training needed in recall, steadiness, direction and retrieving is the same for a pet or a working dog and the only point of deviation is getting a dog to work with retrieving fur and feather and steadiness in a shoot environment. Gundogs were bred to hunt, flush and retrieve game and that is what you own: a dog that has a set of instincts that are hard-wired into it. The fun is actually training with those instincts as opposed to to ignoring them and in that way you get a balanced, happy and controllable pet that is not only fun but is doing exactly the thing it wants to do. It’s not a difficult process and anyone can train a gundog as their nature is fantastic for being biddable, enthusiastic and keen. Make sure you have a structure to follow and some time set aside regularly.

Mike’s 16 expert training tips

1. Get a whistle. Nobody can shout across a windy field. I use an ACME 210.5 as it has a higher pitch. 2. Buy some basic dummies of different sizes or something your dog loves to retrieve. Throw them sparingly and only as a way of rewarding: it’s not about retrieving, it’s about retrieving as a reward for carrying out a command like ‘sit’. 3. Vary your training ground a lot. Vary your energy a lot. 4. When one command appears to be absorbed, such as ‘stay’, find out the distraction points that make it fall apart (for example other dogs) and use this distraction to confirm the command. Find distractions to create a situation to test whether a command is absorbed. 5. Be patient, insistent and consistent. 6. As each piece of training jigsaw builds, mix them up. Don’t stick to the same training routines as the dog will get wise. They love patterns.

7. Think like a dog and be interesting. 8. Ditch the treats as soon as possible. You should be the most interesting thing – not what’s in your pocket. 9. Give lots of praise. Get soft. 10. Don’t keep repeating things. It’s only your insecurity. 11. Sort your whistle, verbal and visual commands early and share them with everyone so they can use them too. 12. Early on, consider what you want (and don’t want) the dog to do. Is sitting at a distance on command really what you want? Emphasis on training will vary depending on this. 13. Think about how you are as an individual with your own personality and adjust for the dog’s personality. Be as one. 14. Train the family as well in your commands and how you deliver them. 15. ‘Training’ is to be done everywhere, including at home and not just an allocated place and time. 16. Finally, enjoy it! Mike has been shooting and fishing for most of his life. He now trains gundogs and is an instructor with the Guild of Dog Trainers, Lincolnshire Pet Gundogs, Rutland Gundogs and writes for Shooting Gazette. He lives in Rutland with his family. He can be contacted on 07803 617859. www.rutlandgundogs.com.

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Firework Fiesta O

NSO

RED

Y

P

B

S

East Anglia’s biggest and best firework display

SAT 3rd NOV East of England Showground

Gates open 5:00pm Bonfire lighting 6:00pm Fireworks 7:30pm Adults £8

£10* on the night

Children £4

PROMPT £5* on the night

Under 15 years. Under 2 years FREE

FUN AMILYS STA LIVE S D FAIR F FUN IDESLLS & N A B HO WS

Moving stationery

www.fireworkfiesta.com 01733 452336

Fine quality personalised notebooks, journals, and leather accessories, handmade in Stamford.

Ticket information

*Cash payments only on the night - cards and cheques can not be accepted. For further information visit www.fireworkfiesta.com

Organised by Peterborough Minster Rotary Club & Peterborough Round Table Proceeds go to local charity

Supported by

THE STAMFORD NOTEBOOK Co. Spiegl Press Ltd. Ryhall Road, Stamford, Lincs. PE9 1XH Tel. 01780 762550 www.stamfordnotebooks.co.uk email: team@stamfordnotebooks.co.uk

GUN SHOP MARKET HARBOROUGH EST.1974

CLAY PIGEON SHOOTING GROUND SITUATED IN A BEAUTIFUL WOODLAND SETTING ON THE GRIMSTHORPE ESTATE

Looking to take up a new sport? Grimsthorpe Estate Shooting Ground specialises in:

01858 466616 SHAUN@SHOOTERSSUPPLIES.CO.UK 32 ST. MARY‘S ROAD, MARKET HARBOROUGH, LEICESTERSHIRE LE16 7DU

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• Tuition for beginners and experienced shots • Stag and Hen Parties • Corporate Entertainment • Practice and competitions • High Tower Café open to the public Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays Open Wednesday to Sunday 09:30am - 5pm 01778591128 I info@grimsthorpeshootingground.co.uk www.grimsthorpeshootingground.co.uk

21/09/2018 09:13


Feature /// Shooting

SHOOTING

K I T B AG

1. 2.

Look at home in the field 1. Alan Paine Combrook coat Engineered with a 100% wool water repellent outer and insulated with a polyester wadding alongside deep hand warmer pockets and storm cuffs, this jacket is stocked at Robinson’s of Stamford. As well as a range of leathergoods, luggage and gifts it offers a great selection of country clothing and footwear from brands such as Dubarry, Le Chameau, Barbour, Aigle and Jack Murphy. Priding themselves on customer service, a visit to Robinson’s is always worth it. Price £349 From www.robinsonsofstamford.com 2. Spiegl Press gamebook Made from recycled leather in green or black, this gamebook can be personalised. Hand bound in Stamford using very high quality British made paper. Price £44.95 From www.stamfordnotebooks.co.uk 3. Tusting cartridge bag Made from bridle leather and furnished with brass, these cartridge bags are built to accommodate 100 cartridges, with a hinged lid for unhindered speed-loading. Price £395 From www.tusting.co.uk

4. 3.

4. Merino Cable Roll Neck Appealling to both shooters and non-shooters this 100% merino wool sweater is incredibly warm without adding excess bulk. Price £139.95 From www.schoffelcountry.com 5. Croots handmade gun slips Clay Shooter Supplies in Market Harborough is a long established gun shop specialising in all types of shooting, offering expertise and advice with an old-fashioned friendly service. It has a full range of new and secondhand shotguns, gun fitting and repair service, and stocks air rifles and air pistols as well as rimfire and centrefire ammunition and cartridges by Gamebore Hull Eley RC and more. It also manufactures bespoke gun cabinets, shooting socks, gun slips and cartridge bags, including these Croots gun slips. Prices from £119 From www.shooterssupplies.co.uk

4. 5.

OFF-ROAD LIKE AN EXPERT Modern 4x4s are jam-packed with technology that will allow them to almost defy gravity and it’s exhilarating to see how far they can be pushed in the environment they’ve been specifically created for. There are a few venues locally that you can really test out their capabilities. The Land Rover Experience, which utilises the grounds of Rockingham Castle near Corby, is one such venue. The venue has a number of specifically created obstacles that have been carved out of the natural landscape that’ll have your heart racing. The fleet of Land Rover vehicles are put through their paces, testing out all the on-board technology, and what seems impossible swiftly becomes the ordinary – traversing climbs that you’d struggle to manage on foot, driving through deep water and pitching the vehicle so far over you can almost touch the ground.

TIPS FOR OFF-ROADING 1. Understand your 4x4 Get a good mental picture of the underside of your vehicle. Know where the fragile parts of the vehicle are, such as the fuel tank, engine sump, differentials and gearbox.

4. Fit the right tyres Tyres are everything and can make all the difference. All the electronic technology in the car won’t be worth a jot if you don’t have the right tyres for the job.

2. Read your manual Understand your on-board technology and all its features; you’ll find everything you need to know in the manual.

5. Power isn’t everything The solution to being stuck isn’t always to floor the throttle. That can make the problem worse because the wheels will spin and make deeper ruts. Slow and steady, letting the four tyres find traction is usually the better option.

3. If in doubt, get out If you’re not sure of the ground ahead, get out and have a look at it. You’ll get a feel for where there might be grip, or not.

www.eastofengland. landroverexperience.co.uk

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Feature /// Shooting Active: When would customers need to get their guns checked by you? Matt: Customers will often get their guns checked every year, a bit like a service for your car, unless there are any repair needs in the meantime. I advise on wear and any maintenance required. Guns need to meet a proof check: if a gun fails to meet a proof check I’m not able to work on it by law and the gun can’t be sold either. Active: Is there a way people can look after guns better? Matt: The barrels need some care and attention after each use. A simple clean can make a big difference. If they become dirty and aren’t maintained properly they can soon become pitted. In order to repair the pitting it can weaken the barrels, which can then cause future issues with proofing. Active: For those going out to buy their first shotgun, do you have any advice? Matt: The most important thing is that the gun fits you. The right gun depends on your height, the length of your arms, how the gun sits on your shoulder and fits to your face. It doesn’t matter what gun you have if it doesn’t fit. Proper gun fit and gun mount is paramount to a good and consistent shot. Having a lesson would help with that, along with giving you some valuable safety advice.

GUN(SMITH) FOR HIRE Matt Simpson is the gunsmith at local firm Simpson Brothers. He talks to Active about how he ended up in the profession and what skills are required Active: What is a gunsmith? Matt: Someone who prepares and fabricates parts for firearms, the same as a silversmith works with silver, or any other smith. I repair and maintain shotguns. Active: Do you just work on shotguns? Matt: I also work on rifles, but most of my training has been on shotguns. There isn’t as much work to do on a rifle, and shotguns have a lot more moving parts. A basic service would be a strip, clean and oil; where every part comes out, the rust is removed, all parts are cleaned and polished where applicable, oiled, greased and put back together. This is followed by a live test to ensure the gun performs. Active: How did you get into it? Matt: I’ve been involved with shooting since I was a child and it has always been a passion. I

did my work experience at 13 in the gun shop. I’ve also always loved fixing things; my brother has been involved with the gun shop for years and I’ve helped out. There are very few young people working as gunsmiths but there are still a lot of shotguns that need repairing. Active: You went to Dundee to train. Does that mean there aren’t many gunsmiths around? Matt: I ended up training with a gunsmith called Andy Coull. I trained with him over the course of six years. The reason I went so far is because it’s such a niche market and gunsmiths tend to be very protective of their territory. Gunsmithing is very old school as it’s a hands-on, dirty job and that puts off many. Everything is made by hand on an old gun. So there’s a lot of manual filing and paraffin blacking for fitting and it’s hard work. Training is a never-ending process though – you’re always learning.

Active: What are the differences between a 12- and 20-bore shotgun? Matt: A 12-bore is slightly larger in bore diameter and more common, but experienced shots are often known to use a 20-bore for an additional challenge. Being lighter, a 20-bore is perfect for younger people wanting to get involved in shooting or not wanting to carry round a weightier recoiling shotgun. Active: Shotguns seem to vary hugely in price. What makes a gun valuable? Matt: The quality and grade of the walnut makes a big difference. Pricier shotguns often have the higher quality of walnut, but this can often lead to issues with the structural soundness as there is a lot more grain and figuring where cracks can form. A plainer piece of wood is often stronger but obviously less aesthetically pleasing. The barrels factor too, whether they’re a demi-bloc or mono-bloc, along with how they’ve been engraved. On the high-end stuff the very fine scroll engraving can have taken a year to complete, hence some of the prices they attract. Active: What could you look to pay for a shotgun? Matt: Shotguns vary hugely in price, but there’s one for most budgets. You can look to pick up an entry-level second-hand shotgun for about £800. At the higher end it’s upwards of £150,000. If you’re buying the right gun they will hold their value though – in fact they will increase in value, just like a classic car.

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Feature /// Challenges

CHARLIE NEEDS A GOOD HEAD FOR HEIGHTS Charlie Martin has decided to put the motor racing on hold this season to concentrate on 2019, and has set herself rather a daunting challenge instead I might have bitten off more than I can chew. We’ll know for sure on October 6 when I attempt to run the Hardergrat in the Swiss Alps. It all started last Christmas while surfing in Sri Lanka. A Swiss guy told me about a beautiful trail that runs along the spine of a mountain range, high above the lakes of Thunnersee and Brienzersee, with death-defying drops on either side.

It’s widely regarded as one of the most breathtaking - and full-on - trails in Europe, if not the world, that you run in a day. You start early in Interlaken and climb 1,800m up to the ridge that in places is only a few feet wide, run the complete length (about 24km) in time to catch the last train back from Brienz at 6.30pm. As a mountain lover I was instantly in love with the idea. The plan was just to walk it until

THE LONG AND WINDING ROAD Mark Smith has now started his 900-mile run down the length of the UK. Before he left he gave us one last update It’s time to pack and head to John O’Groats for the start of my challenge to run the length of the UK – 900 miles in 29 days. By the time you read this I should be well on my way. The last year’s training has taught me so many things; about my strength and ability to push my body hard, and the kindness of, initially, complete strangers who have become friends. In the last year I have run more than 1,800 miles and spent 110 hours in the gym. My

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body fat has reduced by 3% to 12% and my weight has increased by 1.4kg. And now I suppose I feel like an athlete. I feel fitter and stronger than I’ve ever been. The mileage I’ve covered while training equates to more than one marathon a week. If you are thinking about doing a challenge, maybe to support a loved charity – do it! I cannot express the extreme satisfaction you get from improving on the person you were.

someone mentioned Duncan – who lives in Geneva – and competes in mountain marathons. Which is how I inadvertently upped the stakes and agreed to run it. Because, let’s be honest, anyone can walk up, and along, a mountain; running is going to be hardcore. I used to compete at half-marathon distance, but that was a few years back, and I’ve never run with two litres of water and a bag of energy bars on my back, especially while on a steep gradient... So I’m taking an early break from racing and training my socks off. Whatever happens, it’s going to be spectacular.

But do not forget the financial cost. To prepare for this has cost more than just time with my family and friends. If you run you’ll know about the cost of the right running shoes. I’m now on my fifth pair, with three more pairs needed for the challenge. Remember ‘running is the most expensive cheap sport you can do’! Please help me to support Alex’s Wish by donating at mydonate.bt.com/fundraisers/ marksmith6 or you can text donate by calling 70070 and texting marksmith6 followed by the amount you wish to donate. Every penny we raise goes directly to the charity which is helping to find a cure for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. So far we have raised £4,850. My target is to get to £50,000 in my 50th year.


SOURCE 2 SEA COMPLETED Pippa Franks tells us how she got on canoeing the length of the Spey Travelling the length of the Spey was the most difficult thing I have done – mentally and physically -– but I made it. Blisters, bruises, sore knees, back; you name it, every part of my body ached! Because of the lack of rain, we hiked 70km in the first 72 hours and then canoed the remaining 100km in three days. The weather was not always kind with the odd bit of rain, and it was windy, but nothing too horrendous. In the first few days, while walking, we skirted round the edge of the Cairngorms and through some remote parts of Scotland and saw plenty of wildlife. We stayed the first night in the relative comfort of a bothy but after that it was the camping life for us for the next five nights. The first night camping was in Laggan, a tiny village with the first road bridge over the Spey. From there we hiked to Kincraig and camped on the shore of Loch Insh. We were joined by Clare

Balding the following morning and hiked the remaining eight miles to Aviemore with her. She was very easy going and good company. She watched us get into our canoes before leaving us to the next part of our journey, the paddle to the sea. We only had two capsizes (by the same boat) but did have to contend with fishermen who weren’t always happy to see us, and the notorious Knockando rapids. We had three further nights camping before we finally reached Spey Bay - guided in by a seal.

UP HILLS AND DOWN DALES Olivia Achurch tells us about her and Matt Knight’s cycle across the UK to raise money for the Motor Neurone Disease Association We started from Great Yarmouth, having a quick paddle in the North Sea at sunrise before we set off west. The hardest part of the day was coming across the Fens – the long straight roads and relatively featureless landscape were mentally exhausting. We cycled through Stamford and out towards Rutland Water as the sun set; we had got over the hurdle of our longest day of 130 miles. Day two dawned bright and clear. I had one slow motion topple-over when I didn’t unclip my shoe fast enough, and Matt’s pannier rack broke somewhere near Coalville. The last few miles to Shrewsbury dragged, but we eventually arrived at our campsite and after lots of pasta we slept well. Our final day offered us an overcast Shropshire but we made good time through the last 10 miles

of England, crossed the Welsh border, and it promptly started raining. Fixing a puncture on a narrow Welsh lane in the pouring rain was one of the low points, but knowing our fish and chips were only 50 miles away helped. The first road sign to Aberystwyth was a huge boost, as were the drivers and cyclists who cheered us on. The final long climb up to 430m above sea level was rewarded with a long descent down to the coast. We arrived in Aberystwyth mid-afternoon – 57 hours after we had left Great Yarmouth – and went straight to the beach to dip our feet in Cardigan Bay. The 310-mile journey had felt very long, but had also gone past in a flash. Our challenge has so far raised £1,900 for the Motor Neurone Disease Association. www.justgiving.com/liv-and-matt

PACKING FOR SUCCESS Simon Davies has learnt how to travel very light One of the things I didn’t think about before running the Ice, Desert and Jungle Ultras in one year was my kit. Competitors are self-sufficient for five days in each race, so everyone has to carry all their food, shelter, clothing, medical kit and specialist equipment throughout the 150-mile races. Water is the only thing we don’t carry. The aim is to have as light a pack as possible. Less food means less weight, but if you under-estimate the calories you’ll need that could scupper your chances of finishing, The same with equipment. An extra warm layer may add significant weight and bulk to your backpack but could be life-saving if you have to stop for even a short time during the -30˚ temperatures of the Ice Ultra. Food is the biggest quandary. It’s impossible to carry enough to replenish the calories you burn each day, so you carry just enough to keep you going. After all the research and deliberation a remarkably small and lightweight backpack was the result. For the Jungle Ultra (pictured here) it contained a hammock, sleeping bag, dry clothes, medical kit, sun-screen, insect repellant, five days of food, and weighed just over 6kg. If you’d like to find out more about my challenge or if you’re able donate some money to Rainbows you can do so at icedesertjungle.com. Any amount you can spare will be hugely appreciated. www.icedesertjungle.com

ARE YOU TAKING ON A CHALLENGE? It doesn’t matter how large or small it is, we want to hear from you. It could be training for your first 5k starting from scratch, cycling around the world, or anything in

between. Please get in touch so we can feature you on the challenge pages. Email mary@theactivemag.com

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Feature /// Cycling kit

LIGHT FANTASTIC

TIME TO REFLECT!

The experts at Rutland Cycling have some advice for how to light your bike this autumn and winter The temperature is dropping, winter coats are being brought out of hibernation, and the evenings are getting darker. Winter is on its way so it’s time to start considering your visibility while out cycling. You may think a light is a light, but there are a few different factors to consider before purchase. Running time: Bike lights will come either as battery powered or rechargeable via a USB. Battery-powered lights are on average cheaper to buy but do come with the added cost of replacing the batteries once they run out. USB-charged lights are generally more efficient and, with no batteries to replace, are much more cost-effective. Brightness: Lights are measured in lumens; under 50 lumens is great as a back-up in low light but isn’t sufficient for night riding; 100-300 lumens is ideal for riding at night in cities and

towns for any urban commuters, and anything from 300 up to 1,000 will ensure greater visibility on the road, with those over 1,000 being the brightest on the market. Daytime running lights: These have only recently started picking up in popularity among riders but they are a must for anyone riding when the light starts to fade, or just generally on every ride. So, what are they? Daytime running lights are just like normal bike lights but with different modes built-in to ensure maximum visibility while out riding. Daytime running lights are smaller than traditional night lights and use different light patterns. Daytime running lights flash and are bright, this is to ensure they are visible even during the day. If you’re planning on riding through winter these are definitely worth purchasing alongside a pair of night lights, or ensuring your lights have a daytime mode.

Top picks for bike lights from Rutland Cycling

NiteRider Swift 450 and Sabre 80 light set 450 lumen front lights and 80 lumen back light, has a daytime running mode and 35% off RRP. Perfect for any light and location. £39.99

Exposure Link Front and Rear Combo Light Helmet-mounted light, front and rear light combined, contains day bright technology. 100 lumen front light and 35 lumen back light. Ideal for commuting in a city or town. £62.99

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Bontrager Ion 450 R and Flare R light set 450 lumen front and back light, can be seen from 2km away day or night. Great for any light and location. £85.49

Cateye Volt 100 XC and Rapid micro set 100 lumen front and back lights, USB charging. Good for use in cities and towns. £24.99

Metier winter jacket or gilet Fully waterproof, with wearable LED light technology on both the front and rear. Machine washable too. Price from £180 From Café Ventoux

Castelli Squadra ER jacket An essential wind and showerproof shell which will pack away when the weather brightens up. Price £45 From www.rutlandcycling.com

Black Diamond Cosmo aluminium head torch The Cosmo is Black Diamond’s multi-functional headlight that sets the standard for a cost-effective torch with advanced technology. Price £29.99 From www.tallingtonlakes proshop.com

Hurtta Lifeguard Dazzle rope leash If you’re heading out with your dog, get a Hurtta Dazzle rope leash which features high quality 3M reflectors that are highly visible in low light conditions. Price £26.99 From www.innerwolf.co.uk


Feature /// Cycling

ON YOUR BIKE! A scenic route starting and finishing in Oundle DESCRIPTION

Distance 43 miles

This month’s route from Rutland Cycling’s Sally Middlemiss explores East Northamptonshire, starting and finishing in Oundle. It’s a scenic autumnal ride, taking in Aldwincle, Thrapston, Raunds, Swineshead and Kimbolton, with a good mix of smooth, straight sections and some winding, more undulating sections for variety. Maximum gradient is 6.8%, so nothing too challenging! Remember to use front and rear lights and wear hi-vis or reflective clothing, particularly if you’re riding early or late in the day.

Get a detailed map, route notes and download a GPX file for your GPS computer at https://ridewithgps.com/routes/28595717. Enjoy the ride!

THE ROUTE

Head south west out of Oundle, on Stoke Doyle Road ● Continue on to Wadenhoe Rd 3.9 mi ● Continue on to Main St 4.7 mi ● Turn right on to Lowick Rd 5.0 mi ● Continue on to Aldwincle Rd 6.1 mi ● Turn left on to A6116 7.1 mi ● Turn left on to Lowick Rd 7.3 mi ● Continue on to High St 7.7 mi ● Turn left on to Chapel Hill 7.9 mi ● Turn left on to Kettering Rd 8.1 mi ● Continue on to Bridge St 8.2 mi ● At the roundabout, take the 3rd exit on to Midland Rd 8.4 mi ● At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit and stay on Midland Rd 8.9 mi ● Continue on to Denford Rd 9.0 mi ● Continue on to High St 9.7 mi ● Continue on to Ringstead Rd 9.8 mi ● Turn left at Denford Rd 10.2 mi ● Continue on to Brooks Rd 11.6 mi ● Slight right on to Midland Rd/ B663 13.2 mi ● At the roundabout, take the 1st exit on to Chelveston Rd/B663 14.3 mi ●

● At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit and stay on Chelveston Rd/ B663 14.6 mi ● Turn right on to The Green/B663 16.0 mi ● Turn right on to Higham Rd/ B645 16.0 mi ● Turn left on to Caldecott Rd 16.2 mi ● Turn right 17.2 mi ● Turn left at Rushden Rd 18.5 mi ● Turn left at Church Ln 18.5 mi ● Continue on to High St 19.3 mi ● Continue on to High St 22.4 mi ● Turn left on to Swineshead Rd 22.9 mi ● Turn left on to Kimbolton Rd/ B660 24.7 mi ● Turn left on to Main Rd/B645 26.3 mi ● Turn right on to Station Rd/B660 27.1 mi ● Continue on to B662 34.6 mi ● At the roundabout, take the 2nd exit 39.6 mi ● Turn right 41.2 mi ● Continue on to Stoke Doyle Rd 42.6 mi ● Continue on to Stoke Hill 43.9 mi ● Continue into Oundle to finish

START OUNDLE

STOKE DOYLE

40

WADENHOE

5

35

THRAPSTON

OLD WESTON

10

BRINGTON

30

RAUNDS

15

20

KIMBOLTON

25 SWINESHEAD

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Roundup RUGBY

Mixed start for Oakham but Stamford unbeaten BY JEREMY SMITHSONBESWICK OAKHAM BEGAN THEIR SEASON with a very encouraging bonus point home win against Long Buckby – by 30-10 – in which they blooded around five new players to give the new coaching team, headed by Alun Meadows, the best possible start. Their four tries came from Angus Collett (who was named man of the match) Charlie McKie, Jonno Milnes and Callum Crellin. Former president – and proud grandfather – Keith Crellin told me: “We looked a very good, attractive side and were delighted with that opener.” Optimism duly reigned when they went to Market Bosworth the following Saturday with “huge expectancy”. This was an opponent, however, that they haven’t beaten since the mid-’90s and their balloon was punctured somewhat as they went down to a sobering 39-3 defeat. Nevertheless, Crellin continued: “We weren’t even at the races. We did have a couple of players out but I won’t be using that as an excuse. So we’ve already had the good and the bad. Hopefully we won’t be seeing the ugly against Market Harborough next week.” That’ll be a very tough thing to avoid, by the way, as last year’s third-placed side have already defeated Bosworth this term. Early indications are that Crellin’s pre-season assessment – that they would be a midtable side until some of their many exciting prospects in the Colts start to filter into first XV – is spot on, but with Meadows ringing the changes it will be fascinating to watch how they develop.

Stamford’s own Colts have already started that process of progression and, following last year’s relegation, the management team at Hambleton Road is now relishing the campaign ahead. Outside centre Toby Anderson is one of those who’ve moved up to the firsts and coach Matt Albinson told me: “He’s the first promotion of an 18-year old we’ve made for some time that was on merit, not out of necessity.” Other key recruits include tighthead Dan Wiggin, who was an age level champion weightlifter in his teens, and George Nairn who’d been on Tigers’ books as a youngster. Stamford’s league campaign started with a home fixture against Birstall which they won 34-10, with Albinson’s assessment being “the scrum functioned really well and we should have had more” and he felt they also missed numerous scoring opportunities against Bourne, despite the fact they won 57-8. He added: “In years gone by there had been some differences of opinion but this is a team sport and it’s good to see the new guys coming in with a like-minded attitude and bonding. There’s a renewed feeling that everyone’s valued within a coherent club identity. It’s an enjoyable place to be and we’re playing some great rugby.” Albinson also gave a glowing report on their backroom staff and one of their leading lights, bar and facilities manager Sandra Wakefield, has won the National Volunteer of the Year Award. It was presented at Twickenham and meeting Eddie Jones was a highlight. Sandra called it “An amazing day which I will never forget”.

Market Harborough have also begun brightly, first up with the win over Market Bosworth already mentioned followed by another against Vipers. Director of rugby Richard Bowden was particularly pleased to see them pick up bonus points as well, observing that they’d “not played to their full potential yet”. The team is still bedding in after adding some new recruits and the inevitable adjustment to new player-coach Chris Bale’s way of doing things. “There were some periods when we played really well but others when the decision-making was a bit off. We gifted tries by trying to play out of our own 22 when it wasn’t on,” he told me. Last season’s campaign ended in disappointment as they just missed out on promotion, but Bowden is cannily playing down their prospects saying: “We just want to go about our business quietly and not talk things up after last year.” The club is keen to field three teams every weekend if they can and Bowden is appealing to any players out there of whatever age and ability to come and give their thirds a go, which is made up of vets and social players. “There’s nothing better than a clubhouse full of people mixing together regardless of which side they’ve just played for. It’s happened a couple of times recently and that’s so good for the club. It’s what makes rugby what it is and reminds some of us of the good old days when we were young enough to play. So please come down and give us a try,” he said.

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TIGERS TALK Steve Moody reports on a tumultuous first few weeks of the season as huge changes take place at Leicester So for this issue I dutifully sat down with coach Matt O’Connor to talk about the season ahead. He seemed confident they’d had a good pre-season and the new signings would bolster the squad. I chatted to Tom Youngs too, who said pre-season had gone well, but added: “We’ll see when the season starts though. Everyone thinks they’re rock stars in pre-season.” Tigers certainly rocked: a few days later, and that interview with O’Connor was as wholly redundant as his job, with the brash Australian sacked after a 40-6 stuffing down at Exeter in Tigers’ first game. Now, Leicester aren’t the first club to go to Sandy Park and get a shoeing (in fact they’re not even the first Tigers team this has happened to), but the insipid attacking and haphazard defensive manner of the defeat, along with pre-season whisperings of board and coach discontent, did for O’Connor. You could argue that the board did themselves no favours, and looked as lacking in direction as their nowdefunct head coach and chaotic club, except for one thing: they chose Geordan Murphy to take over in the interim. The Tigers legend and current assistant coach, who’s supposed to be learning the reins, did what people like him do. He stepped up.

After 20 minutes of the next game, at home against Newcastle, a nowrampant Leicester were pouring a point a minute over the shell-shocked Falcons, a previously stymied George Ford playing 10 like a maestro and Manu charging about causing mayhem like a kid who’s been shut in detention for the past month. The adrenalin of Murphy’s new, more liberating style of play drained a little in the second half and it’s clear there are plenty of defensive issues to work on, but Tigers came away winning 49-33. Clearly Murphy’s liberating approach had an effect. They then went to Wasps in the next round and gave them a fright. Defensive frailties are still there, but again Tigers scored from all over the park. Ford had another cracker of a game, as did new signings David Denton and Will Spencer, before he was controversially sent off. His incredulous reaction to that red card in a TV interview after, Murphy admitted at Oval Park, was probably a bit over the top on his part, but as he said: “In the heat of the moment, and as a young head coach with no experience of that situation, I shot my mouth a little bit when I needed to sit back and absorb a few things.” For Leicester fans, it is refreshing to see that passion and honesty. It was also refreshing to see a bench

with mostly 19 and 20-year-olds on it. As I said last month, the transition from academy to first team has been dreadful in the past decade. It needs to happen though, because Leicester aren’t able to buy their way to league or European glory. They have to evolve into a winning team, and not trusting younger players won’t get them there. Murphy told us it wasn’t a deliberate strategy of his to pick youth, but that they were the best players for the job. Plenty of ex-head coaches never felt young players were ever the best choice, which is how we find ourselves here. In Geordan Murphy they have a bloke who can take the club forward. He has the credit in the bank with supporters, which gives him more time than any other to develop a new Leicester, and he understands what success takes, and means, at the club. He is Leicester through and through. He must be given this season at least to show what he can do.

Need a birthday or Christmas present for a Tigers fan? It’s never been easier (assuming they’re over 18!), because local gin maker Burleighs and Leicester have partnered on a special edition called Leicester Dry, bedecked in the famous green, red and white hoops. A bottle costs £35 and can be bought from www.burleighsgin.com/product/ tigers

Show your support for local sport... Email advertise@theactivemag.com T: 01572 756375

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21/09/2018 12:40


Roundup

Above and le Martin Johnson shakes hands with head coach Andy Key aer officially opening the clubhouse; the Lions run out

RUGBY

Lions hearted AS THE RUGBY SEASON KICKS OFF, WE SPOTLIGHT A CLUB WITH PLENTY OF AMBITION AND A NEW CLUBHOUSE IN BLABY. BY CHRIS MEADOWS LEICESTER LIONS ARE A relatively new club, but have made big in-roads in their short history. Following a merger of Wigston RFC and Westleigh RFC almost 20 years ago the club has gone from strength to strength, with the 1st XV currently playing in National League 2 North. Importantly the club can also boast more than 150 juniors. The Lions had grown out of their previous facilities, and having sold the ground for development, the club embarked on building a new ground and clubhouse that would be accessible to the whole community. Leicester Tigers and England legend Martin Johnson officially opened the new facility at the beginning of September in front of a number of club stalwarts and distinguished guests ahead of the 1st XV’s local derby against South Leicester. A fitting accolade as he honed his skills as a junior at Wigston RFC. Johnson said: “Leicestershire is a great rugby county. This is a lovely facility that will hopefully generate a bit of finance for the club and if it will help get kids and the community coming down and enjoying the game that’s fantastic.” Head coach Andy Key was on hand to explain what it means to the club: “We’ve

been two years in the waiting for this. We’ve got a brand new clubhouse with lots of good facilities that’ll help us on and off the pitch. We’re also keen to connect with the community and are making sure we start to show that we’re here for them. We want to encourage as many people to get active. Martin started his long career here as a youngster and we continue to have a strong minis and junior section, which are the lifeblood of the club.” Constituent body the Leicestershire Rugby Union were also in attendance. Chairman Paul Green added: “This is an excellent opportunity for Leicester Lions to develop the club even further. A lot of work has gone into the new clubhouse. It’s great to see the club growing and developing and getting new facilities. In rugby now, having a club that’s just open on a Saturday isn’t sustainable so all clubs have to look at alternative ways to fund themselves.” After lunch all guests ventured outdoors to join a healthy supporter base and were treated to an exciting game of rugby; the Lions keen to make their mark early in the season in front of the impressive crowd. It was clear from the start that derby emotions were at their peak, South Leicester’s Sam McNulty being shown a yellow card

within four minutes. Lions capitalised with the extra man and Harry Key converted his own try a minute later. Lions’ Jonny Murdoch balanced out the card tally and saw himself sin binned just before half-time. This allowed South Leicester’s Will Cave the overlap on the wing to score; Palmer duly converting. South Leicester started the second half 10 points ahead so Lions needed a strong start. A quick tap penalty from Alex Wilcockson caught South Leicester on their heels and were unable to react before he had secured five points, with a further two added by Key. Lions scored the next try too, regaining the lead through Laurence Warren-West who threaded himself through the South Leicester defence having only joined the field of play a couple of minutes previously. It was South Leicester though that walked away with local bragging rights. After building up sufficient pressure in the final five minutes, Timo Koster drove through the centre and over the line, the try only awarded after agreement from all three officials. Palmer duly converted to add the final points to the match. Final score: Leicester Lions 21, South Leicester 24. For more information, go to www.lionsrfc.co.uk.

/// O C T O B E R 2018 6 9

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21/09/2018 09:14


Roundup FOOTBALL

Stamford’s rollercoaster start BY DEAN CORNISH IF YOU’RE ANYTHING LIKE ME, you’re only just starting to wake up to the new football season. They say that the players need a good rest, and I’m sure that fans do too... especially after last season. On a personal note, last term’s football viewing ended in a smattering of tears on the terraces of the Luzhniki stadium as I saw England falter at a chance of winning a World Cup, while on the domestic front my season ended watching Stamford lose in the play-off final to a late extra-time goal. They say that football’s joys are made better because of the lows. If that’s the case, I’m due a very big high sometime soon. The problem is that I’m not entirely convinced it will ever come. Certainly not internationally anyway. This year’s domestic football has started well though, with Stamford AFC getting over last year’s play-off final defeat by racing to the top of the table with three wins out of their first three games. A 4-2 away win at Stocksbridge Park Steels opened the season, followed by a workmanlike 1-0 home win over Loughborough Dynamo, and then one of those brilliant performances on a sunny Bank Holiday Monday that saw Graham Drury’s men come back from a goal down to win late on against Pontefract Colliery. At this point, football was great again, and maybe this season would be the season where Stamford would smash everyone in their way on the trail to a championship title, and maybe even reach the FA Cup first round again? You just know there’s a but coming, don’t you? Of course there is – three days after reaching the top of the league table, Stamford went to local rivals Peterborough Sports in the extra preliminary round of the FA Cup. After going 2-0 down early on, they produced a superb comeback to pull it back to 2-2 and then go 3-2 up in the 85th minute. There can’t be many teams that can celebrate a late winner, only to then lose the game 4-3. In normal time. So, having been knocked out of the FA Cup, Drury’s men could then concentrate on the league, only since being knocked out of the cup they’ve not really concentrated on anything, having had three winless games, including a 2-1 home defeat by possible promotion rivals Morpeth Town. In fairness, Drury has assembled a good squad this year and they will surely challenge towards the top of the division. The biggest issue remains the same as last season though – who will score the goals? Last year it didn’t matter as much that Stamford didn’t score enough goals as they conceded so few. With the rock-

solid Henry Eze having left the club in mysterious circumstances, Stamford’s watertight defence is suddenly very porous, and that needs to change soon. There are a few big games coming up against the likes of Ossett Town and Gresley Rovers. Let’s hope Stamford get back on track soon. Elsewhere, after last year’s fine second half to the season it comes as no surprise that Stamford’s other non-league side, Blackstones, have had a good start to their campaign. Stones are currently in fifth place in the league, having won four of their opening five league games. The game they lost was a heavy defeat, losing 5-0 to early pace-setters Anstey Nomads. They also got a sound beating in the first round of the FA Vase competition, losing 7-1 to local rivals Deeping Rangers. Hopefully this could be the year that Blackstones push for promotion back to the United Counties Premier Division. Talking of the UCL Premier Division, it’s not been a good start for Harborough Town on the pitch, but it has been an exciting time generally for the club. The Bees are in the first phase of an £800,000 redevelopment of their ground, with the main ground already partly redeveloped and a state-of-the-art artificial pitch installed. The opening game on the new pitch saw Harborough lose in the preliminary round of the FA Cup to Cambridge City in front of 254 fans. In the league, the Bees have lost four of their five games. In the Peterborough League Premier Division there are now three local clubs following the relegation from the UCL of Oakham United. But it has not been a great start for any of them, with Stamford Lions having won three, drawn three and lost two. The Lions were in the mix for the title at times last season, so James Sheehan will be disappointed with the start to this campaign. Oakham United have won just two of their opening six games back in the Peterborough league, although they have played much fancied Netherton twice, and impressed with a 6-1 win over ICA Sports. Ketton FC have also only won two games and they sit fourth from bottom after their opening nine matches. In Division 1, Uppingham Town are doing well after last season’s relegation. They’re in third but already it looks like the rest of the league are playing for second spot after FC Parson Drove raced into a nine-point lead after amassing 27 points from 27. At the other end of the table, it’s been a poor start for Stamford Bels after last year’s successful campaign. Bels are currently bottom having won just one of their opening six games.

/// O C T O B E R 2018 7 1

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08/08/2018 12:03


Roundup EQUESTRIANISM

Mixed fortunes at Burghley BY JULIA DUNGWORTH

Above and right Willa Newton on the crosscountry and Richard Jones

the Novice. Lilly Dodds rode a lovely test to pick up an individual seventh in the intermediate and finally in the Open Di Bevan came through a dramatic test involving a reversing car to gain individual fifth. In the Intermediate show jumping there was a podium for Katie Mulhern, finishing third. In the eventing the Open team of Di Bevan, Louise Bodily, Claudia Campbell and Alice Turner were fifth, with Louise Bodily seventh place individually. Di Bevan provided the cherry on the cake to complete the championships finishing on her dressage score with an XC round timed to perfection to win. Their success continues: the Burghley Pony Club Eventers are now the Champions of The Area 6 Devoucoux Eventing League 2018.

NICO MORGAN

WHAT A FANTASTIC BURGHLEY Horse Trials we had! A slightly dull sky fell over the initial inspection on the Wednesday afternoon, then the sun shone gloriously over the whole weekend which bought the spectators and shoppers out in their thousands. Tim Price was the obvious victor in a nail-biting battle between himself and the two previous winners, Oliver Townend and Andrew Nicholson. Our local riders, Richard Jones and Willa Newton, had their best Burghley to date finishing in seventh and eighth respectively. Richard has had a tough time of it recently, not only with injury but also having an unlucky run-out at Badminton earlier this year, so a top 10 placing at a four-star has been long overdue. Richard is very much looking forward to coming back next year and feels Alfie has a four-star win in him. Let’s hope he does that where it all started at the Burghley Pony Club 24 years ago! Willa has a very similar hard luck story, breaking her collarbone just six weeks before at Buckminster. Thankfully Chance Remark is better for fewer runs, Willa reckons, which was certainly proved by adding just 5.6 time penalties on the cross-country to her good dressage of 32.9. She too was one of only eight to jump clear in the show jumping and is looking forward to higher placing next year. Simon Grieve didn’t have such a great time. His horse Douglas went lame as he was warming up for the cross-country, and he retired on course on his other ride Drumbilla Metro. Coincidentally Emilie Chandler suffered much the same fate on Coopers Law who she also retired on course. Staying with the Burghley theme, a massive team of Burghley Pony Clubbers descended on Cholmondeley for the annual Pony Club Championships. In the dressage there were placings galore; Sophie Johnson was outstanding with an individual fourth and Bea Lovett-Brunt a well-deserved individual sixth in

FASTER STRONGER FURTHER LONGER /// O C T O B E R 2018 7 3

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20/09/2018 19:08


Roundup CRICKET SEASON REVIEW

From deluge to drought BY JEREMY SMITHSONBESWICK IT SEEMS ONLY YESTERDAY that the cricket season finally got underway after a frustrating delay due to waterlogged pitches – a time that groundsmen across the region would look back on somewhat ironically when they were struggling with the parched conditions that followed a few months later. As we did start there was much to look forward to with interest – Uppingham Town being the first ever Rutland side to play in the Leicestershire Premier League, Stamford also competing at the highest level in their history and newly-formed Ketton Sports making their debut as a club in Division 4. There were new rules to get our heads around as well, with the Leicestershire league deciding that so-called winning draws – where a team beat their opponent’s score but fail to bowl them out – would be rewarded with more points than previously. That appears to have had a positive effect, with less motivation for teams to shut up shop and see out the overs. Furthermore, the potential for bigger swings in point totals has kept league positions in doubt until the very end. To underline that point, Oakham’s skipper Richard Martin is looking forward to a top-six finish in Leics Division 1. They’ve had a much better season than last when they were flirting with the bottom of the table throughout and Martin is very upbeat: “We’re playing the best cricket I’ve seen at my time at the club and there’s a great atmosphere as well.” Availability has been more consistent but there’s still room for improvement. Their most talented player, Wes Durston (ex-Somerset and Derbyshire) has played only eight games due to work commitments, but Martin has had a dependable core of key players every week, highlighting the contributions of Ed Tattersall, Shaun Morris and Charlie Baker. “Ed’s been our best batsman and on occasions has taken the game away from the opposition on his own. Shaun’s scored a couple of very important 50s as well as being our leading wicket-taker. He got a hat-trick against Kibworth, having had a hat-trick ball dropped the week before, and Charlie has really come good in the second half of the season,” he said. Stamford’s campaign came down to the final game but a great performance against Saffron Walden to win by 10 wickets means they will remain at the higher level next year and captain Tom Williams reckons they’ll do better next time. “We’ve learnt a lot, having started not knowing what to expect,” he told me. “We’ll be better tactically at handling the increased number of overs in this division and our youngsters such as Alex Birch and Scott Chamberlain will continue to improve.” Williams’ personal highlight was the two wins over Ufford Park which he described as “complete

performances” particularly as those matches were double pointers as Park were also mired in the relegation battle. Both sides finished strongly and Ufford valiantly won their final two games – the last by one run – to finish just above the two relegation slots. However, in a rather unsatisfactory state of affairs, their heroics will have been for nothing if the effects of an imminent Cambs league restructuring mean they are going to be relegated after all. Uppingham, alas, seem to have lost their battle and, barring miracles on the last Saturday of the season, will finish in the bottom two. They’ve had a strange season, losing their first seven matches before embarking on a run of four wins from six – and then finishing with eight defeats. They will be joined in Division 1 by Market Harborough, who have had a torrid time in a period of rebuilding and will finish bottom of the Premier by some distance having lost 19 of their 21 matches. In contrast, Ketton Sports’ debut season has been a runaway success. To be fair, Division 4 always looked too low a spot for them to start in given the talent at their disposal but you can only beat the teams that are put in front of you. They secured the title with two games to spare and won 18 of their 19 completed games. Two regular batsmen, Peter Rowe and Zasheen Manzoor, have averages around 50 (with Ashley Rogers not far behind) and no less than seven of their bowlers have picked up their wickets at under 20 apiece. You’ll find the names of Rowe and Manzoor in those bowling stats too. Oundle Town finished mid-table in the Northants Premier but retained their title at the ever-popular Burghley Sixes Cricket Week. Their hosts Burghley Park had a year of “consolidation”, according to James Biggs – no bad thing following two of their three sides being relegated the season before. The best performers were their Sunday Rutland League side who finished as runners-up in Division 3 West. Market Deeping’s Sunday side will be promoted as champions of Rutland League Division 2 after an undefeated season in which no-one has bowled more overs for them than Sachithra Perera. It was appropriate, therefore, that it was he who sealed the title at March Town with figures almost worthy of the Guinness Book of Records – five wickets off 1.5 overs for no runs. Any more bowling like that and he’ll be emulating the rise of Pat Brown. Brown, a product of the Deepings academy, now plays for Worcestershire and his skipper Moeen Ali recently tipped him for England saying: “I wouldn’t be surprised if he gets something in the winter in T20 or one-day matches.” It just goes to prove there’s a lot of talent out there in our local leagues.

74 O C T O B E R 2018 ///

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Profile for Active Magazine

Active Magazine // Stamford & Rutland // October 2018  

SPORT, LEISURE, getting fit and staying healthy – Stamford and Rutland is buzzing with people full of energy. Reflecting what’s going on th...

Active Magazine // Stamford & Rutland // October 2018  

SPORT, LEISURE, getting fit and staying healthy – Stamford and Rutland is buzzing with people full of energy. Reflecting what’s going on th...