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ISSUE 18 // OCTOBER 2016


HOW TO… South Leicestershire’s sport and lifestyle magazine

Carve a pumpkin Brew sloe gin Spot a shoveler

Don’t be SAD Be GLAD! How to banish those blues this winter Riding high

Hip Actiohinng

How stretc tes hips invigora your body

Will’s walk




ISSUE 18 // OCTOBER 2016

We visit the country’s oldest basketball team here in Leicester


Boo Can Live k a pe ’t M , mo rson ake re in al to form ur w It? atio ith B n on eau our cham web p site .

Beauchamp College

Open Days

Year 10: 6 October 5pm - 8pm Year 12: 5 November 10am - 2pm Top 20 school for GCSE Progress Rated top Leicestershire Secondary School by the Real Schools Guide We are pleased to offer two events that showcase what Beauchamp College can offer learners: A broad and challenging curriculum, a nurturing pastoral system and the very highest standards of teaching and learning. Our track record for outstanding GCSE results and excellent KS5 provision ensure all learners reach their maximum potential. For more information or to book a place please visit beauchamp.org.uk

Now taking applications for Year7,10 & 12 places for September 2017 Beauchamp College Ridge Way, Oadby, LE2 5TP

0116 2729100 / beauchamp.org.uk Active Life Advert - beauchamp.indd 1

21/09/2016 14:17

Editor’s Letter

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

YOU READ IT HERE FIRST: A FEW MONTHS ago, following Leicester’s Premiership triumph, I speculated, with no empirical data or facts whatsoever, that Leicestershire is the UK’s number one sporting county thanks to its remarkable number of top national teams and wide spread of sports and pastimes for all types of people. Well, those facts have been backed up by a report from ESPN and the University of Bath which named the city ahead of London, Manchester and everywhere else. This was a city-based piece, which was probably just as well for everyone else, because if it had included the rest of the county we’d be even further ahead. To cement this position though, let’s hope the Tigers find some form soon. There can be few sporting teams in the UK where the victory, season after season, decade after decade, is actually not enough for its supporters. Manchester United in the last 20 years, perhaps, but not many others. But Tigers are fundamentally trying to change the way they play, to a more expansive style that will beat the best sides in Europe, while still winning all the time and expecting to pick up silverware. It’s been a bit up and down to say the least – periods of brilliance and periods of mediocrity in equal measure. And that’s in a league that thanks to sugar daddies and higher salary caps is way stronger than it ever was, when it used to be Tigers and AN Other competing for the title every season. It would have been easy to just play conservative, 10-man rugby and still make semi-finals and finals fairly regularly. But to dominate in Europe, which is surely the end game, Tigers have realised they need to expand their game. It’s an immensely tough ask. But no more than you would expect of a team from Britain’s sporting capital.

Enjoy the issue! Steve

Art editor Mark Sommer mark@theactivemag.com Contributors Martin Johnson, William Hetherington, Jeremy Beswick, Julia Dungworth Photographers Nico Morgan, Pip Warters Production assistant Gary Curtis Advertising sales Lisa Withers lisa@theactivemag.com Sarah Stillman sarah@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

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 Disclaimer

Twitter // @theACTIVEmag Facebook // www.facebook.com/theACTIVEmag

Copyright (c) Grassroots Publishing Limited (GPL) 2016. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, or be stored in any retrieval system, of any nature, without prior permission from GPL. Any views or opinions expressed do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of GPL or its affiliates. Disclaimer of Liability. Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the quality and accuracy of the information contained in this publication at the time of going to press, GPL and its affiliates assume no responsibility as to the accuracy or completeness of and, to the extent permitted by law, shall not be liable for any errors or omissions or any loss, damage or expense incurred by reliance on information or any statement contained in this publication. Advertisers are solely responsible for the content of the advertising material which they submit and for ensuring the material complies with applicable laws. GPL and its affiliates are are not responsible for any error, omission or inaccuracy in any advertisement and will not be liable for any damages arising from any use of products or services or any action or omissions taken in reliance on information or any statement contained in advertising material. Inclusion of any advertisement is not intended to endorse any view expressed, nor products or services offered nor the organisations sponsoring the advertisement.

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ONCE AN ICON. ALWAYS AN ICON. If you like your classics with a twist, look no further than the new MINI Seven Hatch Edition a quintessentially British yet unmistakably modern MINI. This captivating edition model embraces the perfect mix of MINI heritage, contemporary styling and cutting-edge technology. The MINI Seven Hatch Edition is equipped with signature MINI Seven styling, including unique MINI Seven badging, exclusive 17" MINI Yours two-tone alloy wheels and classic Diamond Malt Brown cloth leather interior. It even includes MINI Visual Boost, with a 6.5" screen as standard. What’s more, a bespoke MINI Seven Chili pack is available if you want to add even more MINI Seven tailoring to your new icon. To find out more or to book a test drive*, contact Sycamore (Peterborough) Ltd and experience this distinctive new model for yourself. Sycamore (Peterborough) Ltd Papyrus Road, Werrington Peterborough PE4 5HW Tel: 01733 707074 www.sycamoremini.co.uk

THE NEW MINI SEVEN HATCH EDITION. Official Fuel Economy Figures for the MINI Seven Hatch Range: Urban 35.8-65.7 mpg (4.3-7.9 l/100km). Extra Urban 57.6-88.3 mpg (3.3-4.9 l/100km). Combined 47.1-78.5 mpg (3.6-6.0 l/100km). CO2 Emissions 95-139 g/km. Figures may vary depending on driving style and conditions. *Test drive subject to applicant status and availability.


of Fine & Country customers would recommend our services Take their word for it. An overwhelming majority of those who had used Fine & Country would recommend our services to a family member or friend, according to our most recent survey taken by members of the public.* To achieve 98% positive feedback is a privilege and we will endeavour to maintain this result, as we are dedicated to offering the best possible services to every customer, whether buyer or seller, from beginning to end. *“Brand Awareness Survey 2016� that was carried out on SurveyMonkey.

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Fine & Country Head Office 121 Park Lane, Mayfair, London W1K 7AG Tel: +44 (0)20 7079 1515 | Email: parklane@fineandcountry.com 15/09/2016 12:54

Contents ACTIVE LIFE 10-11 HOW TO...

ISSUE 18 /// OCTOBER 2016


Carve the perfect Hallowe’en pumpkin


The seasonal delights on offer outdoors


Another tasty recipe from Riverford Organic


Hope Against Cancer CEO Nigel Rose


Great things to do locally for all the family


Jeremy Beswick visits the Leicester Riders basketball team


Top tips to keep you fit and active over the winter

ACTIVE BODY 47-49 GIVE BACK PAIN THE BOOT Essential advice from Function Jigsaw


More from our nutritionist on eating healthily


Tips and products to help you look great



56 26


Keep warm and dry with these fabulous sports coats


The Sunday Times writer on sporting meltdowns


We try out The Bewicke Arms at Hallaton


We head out to Illston-on-the-Hill


Our focus on the latest achievements from local pupils

60-66 ROUND-UP

How clubs in the area are faring

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24/09/2016 17:42

Make your move to a new home in Stamford! Voted as ‘The Best Place to Live in Britain’ by the Sunday Times

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Sales Office: Radcliffe Road, Stamford, Lincolnshire PE9 1FB 2296 0916

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MAKE A PUMPKIN LANTERN It’s Hallowe’en this month so a pumpkin lantern is a must. They are easy to make and very eye catching (just make sure you save the flesh for pumpkin soup or pie). Here’s how… Using a sharp serrated knife, cut the crown off a large pumpkin. Scoop out the seeds and fibres and discard. Remove most of the flesh and save to use later (there’s a great pumpkin soup recipe opposite). Draw a simple outline of a face on the pumpkin. Cut the eyes, mouth and nose out using a small serrated knife (always cut away from you in case the knife slips). Place a lit tea light inside the pumpkin and replace the crown. Easy!

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Make sloe gin This month is the perfect time to make sloe gin, and it’s incredibly easy. Sloe gin takes a minimum of two months to mature so get brewing now and you can have it ready to drink for Christmas. If you are very patient, and can resist, leave it for up to a year to mature. Ingredients 450g sloes 175g caster sugar 1 litre gin Method Place the sloes in a plastic bag in the freezer overnight – this will cause the skins to split to release more flavour. Place the frozen sloes in a large Kilner jar, pour in the sugar and gin, seal tightly and shake well. Store in a cool dark cupboard and shake every day for a week. Then shake weekly for at least two months. Don’t be impatient – remember, all good things come to those who wait...


Make pumpkin soup Ingredients 4kg pumpkin 125g butter 2 medium onions, peeled and finely chopped Freshly ground nutmeg Salt and pepper 2 litres chicken stock 3 tbsp sherry

Transfer to a food processor and blend until smooth. Return to the pan, bring to a low simmer and cook for a further 30 minutes. Ten minutes before the end, add the sherry. Serve with crusty granary bread.

Method Use the pumpkin flesh removed to make the lantern. Chop the scooped out flesh. Melt the butter in a large pan and add the onions, cooking gently for 10-15 minutes until soft and golden brown. Add the pumpkin and nutmeg, season with salt and pepper. Cover with a lid and cook for 40-45 minutes, stirring occasionally to prevent from burning. Add the stock and bring to the boil.

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join us for our

factory sale day One Day Only: 15th Oct, 10am to 4pm Surplus stock, samples and furniture hugely reduced and 10% off all standard stock, including new Autumn styles

Showroom open every weekday 10am-4pm The Tannery Warehouse, 29 Olney Road, Lavendon MK46 4EU 01234 712266 | www.tusting.co.uk | info@tusting.co.uk

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LITTLE ACORNS AMONGST THE OAK TREES The shooting season starts this month and is a popular fieldsport in our area. Many people take part, be they gamekeepers, beaters, pickers up, shoot owners or guns, and thoroughly enjoy the camaraderie that the sport brings as well as the delicious gamebirds on offer. Shooting supports 74,000 full-time jobs throughout the country and makes a huge contribution to the British economy. There are many small artisan businesses that make their own products and benefit from this ancient, traditional sport. We have found some in our area who are going great guns... Matt Simpson has always liked fixing things, and loves shooting, so decided to combine the two and train as a gunsmith. After serving his apprenticeship in Dundee he returned to the area and now has a workshop at John Bradshaw’s Gunshop at Fotheringhay. He has

customers from all over the world and is an expert at making and customising stocks and also repairs and services guns. www.johnbradshawguns.co.uk 07751 532574 or 01832 226376 James Biggins is a traditional silversmith whose speciality is crafting hunting and shooting themed pieces. Each piece is unique and he makes anything from cufflinks to dog whistles and hip flasks. The set of 10 pewter hip flask peg markers (pictured below, price £450) is beautiful. It combines being able to draw peg numbers whilst having a quick warming tot at the same time. www.jamesbiggins.co.uk

Sloeberry Spirits is based in Rutland and makes some perfect fillers for a hip flask. Much of the fruit is picked from the hedgerows

around Rutland and only the best quality spirits are used. The firm lets the infusions ferment over many months and you can tell this from the taste. One of our favourites is the sloe gin, but the blackberry vodka comes a close second. The gift sets make wonderful presents – the shot glass gift set costs £22.50 and a bottle on its own is £16. Available from many shops locally. www.sloeberryspirits.co.uk A game book is used by many to record the bag on shoot days or just to note down the weather, direction of the wind, who attended, etc. Spiegl Press in Stamford makes the perfect notebook for this, the Rutland Notebook. It’s pocket sized, can be personalised, is made from luxury Scottish deerskin and has an integral pen loop. It’s hardbound in Stamford and costs £19.95. www.stamfordnotebooks.co.uk or 01780 762550

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THE GREY SQUIRREL Known to many as the tree rat, and classified as vermin, the grey squirrel is a common sight in most gardens, parks and woodland. Native to north America, they were introduced to Britain in the 19th Century and have thrived, becoming commonplace throughout the country and replacing the native red squirrel in most parts of the UK. These squirrels have thick grey fur and often sit upright with their large bushy tales arched over their back. Active throughout the day, they can often be spotted at bird feeders in gardens. At this time of year they will be actively foraging for nuts to store for the winter. They do not hibernate. Their nest is called a drey, constructed of twigs, leaves and bark and the female will often have two litters, of about four, a year. A cheeky, bold character who is happy to live amongst us, sometimes too close for comfort as they are often found in roof spaces and are known to damage electric wires. They are a sought after delicacy in some restaurants and popular on certain menus.

THE SHOVELER With its large flattened bill the shoveler is easily recognisable, even in silhouette. The drake, slightly smaller than a mallard, is a handsome bird with a dark green head, white breast and chestnut flanks.

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The female resembles a mallard but has a shorter neck and the obvious larger bill. The shoveler is a filter feeder, using its wide bill to sift plankton, seeds, insects and small snails from shallow water, but it will upend like other dabbling ducks. Many birds will often feed together, swimming in tight circles to stir up food items. Shoveler may be seen on local waters throughout the year. Peak numbers at the reservoirs usually occur in September and October and have topped a thousand at Rutland Water in good years. Shovelers move on quickly when shallow waters freeze, putting food out of reach. Many travel south and may reach southern Spain or north Africa. As a breeding bird the shoveler is scarce nationally and the only recent breeding records locally have come from Rutland Water and Fort Henry ponds. On the Egleton reserve four or five broods are usually seen on the lagoons each year and at Fort Henry breeding was confirmed in 2010 and 2015. Terry Mitcham

Sloes The fruit of the blackthorn, the sloe can now be spotted throughout the hedgerows. Blackthorn was a popular hedgerow plant because of its sharp thorns, perfect for keeping stock in fields, and is abundant in this area. The black berries with their distinctive purple-blue waxy bloom are perfect for picking this month as they ripen. Traditionally they would be harvested after the first frost but are often picked earlier now before they go soft. Sloes are thin fleshed with a strong, sharp flavour. The expression ‘sloe-eyed’ refers to a person with very dark eyes and was first mentioned in A J Wilson’s 1867 novel Vashti.

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2 chicken thighs and 2 drumsticks Salt and pepper 1 large or 2 small red onions 3 beetroots 150g brown basmati rice 2 oranges Pilaf rice pot containing: ¼ tsp cinnamon ¼ tsp ginger ¼ tsp nutmeg 1 tsp smoked paprika ½ tsp cumin ½ tsp fennel 1 tsp cardamon pods 1 vegetable stock cube 50g pistachio nuts 10g fresh mint


Lightly oil the chicken and season with salt and pepper. Heat a heavy based pan. Add the chicken (thighs skin side down) and fry until the skin is golden brown (1). Turn the drumsticks so they brown on all sides. Remove from pan and keep to one side.

in a sieve under cold water. Finely zest and juice one of the oranges.


Once the onion and beetroot has cooked add the rice and pilaf spice pot and stir. Crumble in the stock cube, add 500ml of water, season with salt and pepper then bring the pan to a low boil. Nestle the chicken in amongst the rice, keeping the skin out of the liquid. Cover the pan loosely, either with a lid at a slight angle so a gap remains or with foil.

Cut the remaining orange into segments.


Cook for approximately 40 minutes moving the rice as little as possible, just a few gentle stirs to make sure it doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Halfway through add the orange juice and the other orange which you have segmented.

Cook until the rice and beetroot are tender and the chicken cooked. Keep an eye on the liquid, by the end you want it all to have evaporated. You might need to add a splash more as the rice cooks and absorbs it.

Put the pistachios in a dry frying pan. Heat them gently for a couple of minutes until lightly toasted. Wash and finely shred the mint.


Peel and finely slice the onions. Add a splash more oil to the same pan. Fry the onions on a low heat for 10 minutes until softened. Stir now and then to make sure they don’t stick. If they start to, add a splash of water.

While the onions cook, wash, peel and chop the beetroot into thin wedges or bite-size pieces. Add the beetroot to the onion (2). Rinse the rice

RECIPE BOXES Riverford recipe boxes are a simple and inspiring way to cook. Every week, we deliver everything you need to make three tasty organic meals. Inside each box, you’ll find the freshest, seasonal organic produce, step-by-step recipe cards and all the ingredients in exact quantities. The recipes are quick to cook and ideal for weeknights – most are ready in under

Serve topped with the toasted pistachios, shredded mint and a little orange zest.

Tip: If you have one use a serrated knife. Citrus fruits and tomatoes will blunt a good flat blade very quickly.

45 minutes. Think well balanced and nutritious, with a few treats thrown in. Our cooks come up with nine new recipes every week, so there is always plenty of choice. There are three different varieties of recipe box - choose from vegetarian, quick, or original. A box for two people ranges in price from £33 for the vegetarian box, to £39.95 for the quick and original boxes. Delivered straight to your door, with everything you need to cook

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Activelife Rise Outdoors Brother and sister Amelia and Jack Steele from Belton in Rutland have spent their lives outdoors. Brought up climbing trees, camping and skiing, they have spent much of their adult lives in far-flung places travelling, hiking camping and skiing. Because of these experiences they know exactly what gear is needed for all of these pastimes – high quality, ethical and good looking, but they were struggling to buy much of it in the UK. So the enterprising pair decided to set up their own business supplying gear and clothing they know is durable, hardwearing and ethical. Rise Outdoors was launched in July and is quietly gaining ground. They want good quality and ethical products, gear that will last for years and not break on the first outing. They select brands that have interesting environmental initiatives and have brought them all under one roof through their online business. They also have a vintage range, knowing that these items really do last a lifetime. www.riseoutdoors.co.uk

IN SUPPORT OF GRIEVING FAMILIES Bodie Hodges died in 2012 aged 10 months because of a tragic choking accident, but his death hasn’t been in vain. His family bravely decided to offer his organs for donation so helping to save four other babies’ lives. Obviously devastated, Bodie’s parents, Nick and Donna, were kindly offered a break with their family and felt that this time out was a significant part of their grieving process. Because of this experience they decided to set up the Bodie Hodges Foundation to raise funds to buy a lodge for families from the East Midlands to stay in following the death of their child. They have raised £250,000 in four years and have officially opened the lodge, called Bodie’s Boathouse, at Tallington Lakes near Stamford. The lodge provides a relaxing and safe environment for families to go where siblings can spend time with their parents and start rebuilding their lives. Their first family will be visiting at the end of this month. Nick and Donna and their family and friends will continue their fund-raising efforts to ensure the lodge is kept to a high standard. They also

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plan to raise awareness about organ donations. www.bodiehodgesfoundation.co.uk.


Abiti Ladieswear Abiti Ladieswear in Francis Street, Leicester, is bursting at the seams with fabulous fashion... and you can park outside so you don’t have far to stagger with all your bags. They pride themselves on simple, hand picked fashion that you will wear for more than one season. Owner Michelle is always on hand to offer styling advice and with more than 20 years’ experience in ladies’ fashion she knows what she’s talking about. Their style is eclectic, for all ages, with designs from Denmark, France and Italy as well as English designers. They will order items individually for you and even offer wardrobe consultations. Abiti Ladieswear, 21 Francis Street, Leicester. www.abiti-ladies.co.uk.


THIS IS A FANTASTIC OPPORTUNITY FOR THE EXPERIENCE OF A LIFETIME WHILST RAISING MUCH NEEDED FUNDS FOR A LOCAL HOSPICE Towering over the sandy plains of Tanzania stands Mount Kilimanjaro – the world’s tallest free standing mountain. This breath-taking trek will guide you up the tranquil Machane route where you will trek through deep forest, home to spectacular wildlife, stretching up to moorland and onwards towards glaciers before reaching the Uhuru peak. This will be one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of your life, join us and be part of this truly magnificent journey. For an information pack and full details of the schedule and costings please contact Paul Marlow Lakelands Hospice fundraising manager on 01536-747755 or paulmarlow@lakelandsdaycarehospice.org.uk

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A day in the life of




’ve worked in the voluntary sector for about 20 years for various charities including the RNIB, MIND, Action for Children and CARE. And I’ve been with Hope Against Cancer for three years. Hope is a small local charity which was founded in 2003 by Allison Wilson, who was the High Sheriff of Leicestershire and who, sadly, died a year later. The aim was to bring cutting-edge research to Leicestershire as cancer survival rates in the county at that time were among the worst in western Europe. National organisations were only giving money to well established research institutions in places such as London, Cambridge, Oxford and Edinburgh. Nowadays, Cancer Research UK is investing a lot of money in Leicester and we have become a Cancer Research Centre of Excellence – one of only 15 in the UK and the only one in the East Midlands. Now the Department of Cancer Studies at Leicester University is nationally renowned. A large part of that is down to Hope’s additional funding and pump-priming new research. We have committed to fund £150,000 annually into the centre for the three years of the award. There’s a renewal bid coming up next year to maintain the status of excellence and ensure the money keeps coming in. Three new applicants are bidding so unfortunately three existing ones will lose out. If we retain that vital status, our challenge will be to raise a minimum of £1 million over the next five years to support local research. I, therefore, have to keep my eye on how to sustain funding in this tough climate and ensure the trustees are given the right information to make the best research decisions and that we’re using our donors’ money in the best possible ways. We’re a small organisation with two full-time and two part-time staff and about 20 loyal volunteers. This means one minute I may be checking that our data protection practices are sound, and the next, I’m having a cup of tea with a volunteer or unblocking the kitchen sink in our small office! Raising hopes In the last 13 years the charity has raised £5 million and every penny we raise is spent here in the county. We’ve funded about 50 research projects to tackle many forms of cancer and in 2012 we opened a clinical trials unit at Leicester Royal Infirmary, funded by Hope. Patients can now take part in trials that can lead to new drugs and treatments. We fund the Hope nurse there as well to add to the care and support patients receive.

Our priority is to fund research into early detection and prevention. We’ve just announced £500,000 of new funding over the next couple of years beyond what we’re doing in the centre of excellence. This includes spending £200,000 on small research equipment in 16 different projects in Leicester; £150,000 for a two-year study into colorectal cancer and £80,000 on a DNA sequencer which will speed up targeted medicines. We run a Bold and Blue week every year which is a bit like Red Nose Day and at the beginning of October there’s a sponsored dog walk at Wistow. Both the Leicestershire and Rutland High Sheriffs are supporting us this year and Next are donating the proceeds of their annual ball. We run a big cycle ride every two years. Last year 75 cyclists and support riders cycled from Geneva to Milan and raised more than £100,000 with our patron, Martin Johnson, who is a keen cyclist and always takes part in the ride. The next one is in 2017 in the UK. Anyone can take part as we put on loads of training rides and then people are placed into groups with others of the same ability. Last year we had a retired GP who was a 66-year-old novice cyclist when he started, who raised about £15,000 on his own.

Around 5,000 people are diagnosed with cancer every year in Leicestershire and the incidence of bowel cancer is increasing. Significantly, there have been large numbers of people from the sub-continent getting bowel cancer when previously they didn’t. They now eat more westernised food, which suggests that environment and lifestyle has something to do with it. There’s a whole branch of research looking at genetics and we’re funding a young researcher who is particularly looking at the effects of curcumin, which is a derivative of turmeric, on improving the outcomes when patients are undergoing chemotherapy for bowel cancer. Nowadays, as a result of the quality of research and treatment, one in two people who contract cancer can expect to live for 10 years or more, but early detection is vital. We’re training the next generation of scientists doing research into how we can further improve on this. I’m not a scientist or a doctor. My main priority is to keep the money coming in and to get the message across to more people and potential supporters that the work we do is crucial. To do that I have to get out and about talking to people. Communication is key to raising much-needed funds.

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Sixth Form Open Evening Wednesday 26th October 2016 6.00pm - 8.00pm

Come along and see the new face of Sixth Form, find out about our exciting courses, meet the teachers and view our facilities. We can help you to achieve your goals. Station Road, Wigston, Leicestershire, LE18 2DS Tel: 0116 2881611 www.wigstoncollege.org

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next to Archway House Lubenham Hill Market Harborough LE16 9SZ

23/09/2016 11:14

Activelife WALKING TO WEMBLEY A lifelong Leicester City fan stopped off overnight on the first leg of his journey at The Angel Hotel in Market Harborough as he completed a charity walk from the King Power stadium to Wembley. Last year Martyn Richardson was diagnosed with a rare eye condition called Leber’s Disease. Within six months 80% of his sight had deteriorated. Vista, a Leicestershire and Rutland charity, has given him vital support with his rehabilitation so Martyn wanted to give something back. He and five friends set themselves a target to raise £5,000 for Vista, a charity that has been helping those suffering with sight loss, and their families, for more than 150 years.


JOIN THE 7 EVENTERS The 7 Eventers have already reached their target of £10,000, having only just finished their fifth event, so are going great guns and hoping to raise much more money as well. Everybody is delighted and enthusiastically looking forward to event number six. But first of all mention must go to the Born to Run team who completed event five – the 10k Cannock Chase. The race went well and all finished with big smiles on their faces. Event number six is getting very close and it’s a fantastic opportunity for everyone to join in. It takes place on Saturday, October 8, between 7am and 9.30pm at Parklands Leisure Centre in Leicester. All you have to do is give up 30 minutes of your time to either run, row or cycle. It’s open to people of all ages and backgrounds... so what are you waiting for?

The team are aiming to hit 1,000 miles in a day, which is the equivalent distance from the Leicester Tigers ground to a number of chosen premiership grounds. There will be some amazing people joining them to help achieve their ambitious target including TV and radio presenter Dal Dhaliwal. The team will be running diabetes blood tests on the day between 11am and 4pm as well as CPR training sessions and they have a number of health activities including boxing sessions and keep fit classes. It will be an event to remember and you can all take part to show your support for their last group event of this year. Find out more by logging on to http:// www.7events.org/challenges-events or www.7events.org/tigers-away.

Lutterworth Rotary Club has now knitted more than 6,000 teddies for traumas. Knitters from all over the country regularly send packs of 10 bears to Lutterworth so that they can be distributed worldwide. The bears are packed alongside medicines which are being sent to orphanages in Africa and Portugal, and to Giving World in Leicester which distributes them. Recently the knitters have turned their attention to baby bootees and have been supplying them to the NHS. Well done all those knitters who are helping to put smiles on the faces of children in distress.

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WHAT’S ON There’s lots going on in your area this month, why not try some of these? ■ The Curve Theatre in Leicester will be hosting the opening night of Miss Saigon when the show embarks on a major UK tour next year. The opening night will be on Monday, July 3, and it will continue until Saturday, July 22. Tickets go on sale in the week commencing October 17. www.curveonline.co.uk ■ World famous artist Chris Derubeis, who works mainly in aluminium and other metals, is touring the UK this month and will be exhibiting at Croft Wingates Gallery in Market Harborough on October 21 from 6-8pm. Go along to the gallery to meet Chris and enjoy his latest collection. His work weaves together forms of metal sculpture and paint to build weightless, diaphanous forms. www.croftwingates.co.uk ■ Walkies at Wistow takes place on Sunday, October 2, in aid of Hope Against Cancer. It’s a guided sponsored dog walk through the beautiful fields of Wistow, ending at the Wistow Bistro café where you will be treated to a burger (and your dog gets a goodie bag too). A dog trainer will also be available to answer any queries you might have about your dog’s behaviour. www.hopeagainstcancer.org.uk ■ Market Harborough Musical Theatre has a great show on this month. If you loved the ’80s this is the show to see with songs and dances paying tribute to this iconic era. Grab your leg warmers and new romantic gear and dress the part. The show is running every night from October 12-15 at 7.30pm and the best costumes on Friday and Saturday night will win a prize. Tickets are selling fast and cost from £10. Tickets are available online at mhmt.ticketsource. co.uk or from Ideology, St Mary’s Road, Market Harborough.

facilities. The centre offers the chance for people to try their hand at wood turning or just to make something out of wood in the workshop. You can use their computers, tools and equipment to learn a new skill or to use the tools for an existing skill. Pop in and see them over a cup of tea and a biscuit to look around, sign up for courses or just have a natter. www.enterprisecentre.org

■ Harborough’s Waterloo community garden has lots on at the moment including an afternoon of apple scrumping on Sunday, October 9. Apples from the orchard will be pressed on site to make apple juice which will be available for everyone to try and take home with them. www.sustainableharborough.org.uk ■ The Enterprise Centre in Gilmorton Road, Lutterworth, is holding a community open day on Friday, October 7, between 12-7pm to show off their

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Feature /// Basketball

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RIDING HIGH The Leicester Riders are one of Britain’s most successful basketball teams. But their ambitions don’t stop there... By Jeremy Beswick WE CAN ALL feel incredibly proud that Leicester has been named ‘greatest sporting city in the UK’ as a result of research by the University of Bath and sports channel ESPN, beating Manchester and London into second and third places respectively. While it can’t be denied that the modern romantic fairytale that was the football club’s heroics of last season, combined with a still-formidable Tigers rugby side and our resurgent county cricket team were key to this success, so too is the fact that Leicester is home to the country’s oldest and, in recent times, most successful basketball club – the Leicester Riders. So successful, in fact, that last season they won two of the four trophies on offer, in the form of the League and the Trophy, and were runners up in the others outperforming their closest rivals – the Newcastle Eagles. I went along to their home at the Leicester Sports Arena on Charter Street to watch them train and get the lowdown (and pretty low I felt too, being a relative dwarf against most of the players). Like many of us who grew up in this country, my experience of basketball is limited to a few games at school, but my first impressions after some minutes observing the professionals at work were how athletic, skilful and full of guile the play is, with feints and dummies and plenty of what they call in football ‘giving the eyes’ – looking one way to deceive and passing the ball the other. It’s also mind-bendingly fast yet, as you’re so

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Feature /// Basketball

‘Basketball never stops and the atmosphere can also change very quickly. A match is never over until it’s over’

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close to the action – the court being so much smaller than, say, a rugby field – that even as a novice spectator I was able to fully appreciate what was going on. It’s almost like being on the floor yourself. During a break in the action Californian star shooter Tyler Bernadini joined me in the stand. Now in his third season at the club, he’s had a distinguished career since being named Ivy League Rookie of the Year in his early days, and had played in the USA and Italy before signing for the Riders. “Yes, it is very fast paced,” he agreed. “There’s lots of scoring and action all the time and whether it’s the big guys at seven feet or the little guys at five nine, they’re all dynamic athletes.” I remarked that even at a training session there was a sense of showmanship and spectacle that I imagined was magnified on match days? “We open up at around 6pm,” said Tyler. “So the fans can get some beer and food and watch the warm up. There’s entertainment mid-way and a band or singer afterwards. You’ll find all the players mingling in the bar too – the team is very accessible and it’s important to us that we reach out to the community here in Leicester.” Basketball is, of course, massive in the USA – the players there are, on average, paid more than any other sportsmen in the world – and much bigger even in Europe and elsewhere than it has traditionally been here. But there are signs that we too are catching the bug. The Department of

Culture, Media and Sport reported in 2015 that, for 11 to 15 year olds, it came second on the list of most participated UK sports. The Basketball All-Party Parliamentary Group, meanwhile, highlighted its “huge street credibility” and the “potential that basketball has to change many more lives”, especially in deprived communities. To this end, Riders are much more than just a team, but a club with a thriving infrastructure. As well as being one of the eight founding member of the women’s league there is a junior programme starting at under 12s and camps throughout the year from eight years old upwards for those who want to develop their skills and fundamentals under the guidance of Leicester Riders coaches and professional players offering “a fun yet hard working environment”. Tyler rejoined his team-mates for a review of their previous match on one of the massive screens at each end of the court; coach Rob Paternostro fast forwarding and then stopping the action as he pointed out areas for improvement or praise in a broad Connecticut accent. Mind you, you shouldn’t get the impression that this is just an American ex-pat outfit. “We’ve four Americans and one Swede but the other seven in the first team squad are British,” Rob told me later. Rob had played his basketball all over the world before becoming a coach and he echoed Tyler’s words on the pace of the action.


The Riders play at the Leicester Sports Arena – a cosy venue where you sit right at the side of the court, allowing you to appreciate the skill and speed of the players

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Feature /// Basketball

“In an age where attention spans seem to getting ever shorter, basketball never stops,” he told me. “The atmosphere can also change very quickly. You may feel your side are in total control of the match but a couple of errors or good shots from your opponents and it’s a different situation. A basketball match is never over until it’s over.” What would he say would surprise a new spectator most? “I’d say the speed and balance of these guys, whatever their height. They’re some of the best athletes in the world but they’re always interacting with the fans with selfies, autographs and conversations.” Having moved to their current, now permanent, home as recently as January of this year he also stressed how much they want to connect with the local area: “A big crowd really helps the team. You want as much noise and support as possible. That can really help with momentum.” The club continues to invest heavily on the playing side, the latest arrival being another American star, Taylor King, who Rob described as capable of being “explosive offensively”. Operations manager Joe Pinchin told me one reason they are investing so heavily is to build strength in depth for next season. “Now we have the improved facilities here at this stadium, we’re determined to play in the European league at the earliest opportunity,” he said. This will be the first time in many years that a UK side has done so and will mean playing mid-week matches as well. The fact that they’re prepared to take on what is a significant commitment is evidence of their ambition.

“We’re challenging the status quo of basketball in the UK,” Joe added. “We intend to be the market leaders in all that we do and the standard bearers for the British game.” With the new season just beginning, more stars on their way and adult tickets under £20 the crowds will continue to grow so why not join them and, as coach Rob put it to me: “come along and be our sixth man”.

Above and below

The Riders are the most successful basketball club in the UK, winning two titles last season; the club was also a founder member of the women’s league

For more information on the Riders, games and tickets, visit www.leicesterriders.co.uk

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Feature /// Gear









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Breathable, water resistant fabric keeps you comfortable in the elements, with Zap reflectivity that is designed for high visibility when struck by artificial light. There’s a media management system on the collar to secure headphone cords and shock cord waist adjustment to customise your fit. Price £100 From Leicester Running Shop

3. Men’s Rab Spark jacket 4. Women’s Montane Atomic jacket

Both these stylish, versatile and lightweight rain jackets are available at Cotswold Outdoor’s store at Peterborough Garden Park, Eye, and online at cotswoldoutdoor.com (other colours are available online in both jackets). Price £150 (men), £120 (women) From Cotswold Outdoor

5. Kooga charcoal rain jacket

Ideal for those training days and warm-ups in the wet, the outer shell of this full zip rain jacket is made from 100% polyester and it has a polyester mesh lining with a nylon taffeta lower sleeve lining for light weight and rain protection. Price £29.99 From Rutland Sports

6. Caterpillar Defender insulated jacket

This jacket is built for performance and functionality with its water resistant finish and highly durable nylon ripstop fabric. The padded active weight insulation provides maximum performance, but doesn’t weigh you down. A pocket system also includes a large inside mesh pocket for glove storage, tablet pocket and mobile phone pocket with wire management. Price £68 From worksafeonline.co.uk

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23/09/2016 11:14

Guest column

‘You cannot be serious’... and other sporting meltdowns Martin Johnson on the fragile state of mind of certain sports stars f they stopped a women’s tennis match every time there was a loud noise during a rally, Wimbledon would still be going at Christmas, but even though the dinner-gong type bong from a malfunctioning sound system during Andy Murray’s US Open quarter-final would only have registered about a seven on the Sharapova scale, it was enough for the umpire to halt proceedings mid-point. And at the same time send our boy into one of those Chernobyl-style meltdowns to which so many sportsmen and women appear bafflingly prone. Tennis appears to be especially vulnerable to turning its competitors from models of calmness into total basket cases – so much so that after watching Murray start ranting at some perfectly sensible ruling I’m more convinced than ever that that icy-veined Swede with the headband was actually a robot. Bjorn Cyber-Borg. It’s not just the rackets that are highly strung in tennis, and when they get around to a remake of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, they should look no further for the title role than John McEnroe, who could play the part without the need for make-up. In the list of tennis’ top 10 meltdowns, ‘super-brat’ would probably feature in all of them. My personal favourite – and I urge anyone who’s not yet seen it to watch it on You Tube – was his performance in a match at the Swedish Open in 1984. It began with his customary practice of suggesting to the person in the high chair that he had the IQ of a pond hopper, and he became even more charming when the umpire, or “jerk” as our loveable friend described him, declined to dignify this tantrum with a reply. The result being that a miffed McEnroe took the opportunity during the following changeover to practice his double handed backhand. Not on the ball, mind you, but the drinks table, and having sent a glass of water fizzing past a net post, Mac sat down. And this time he achieved his objective of prising a few words out of the umpire. Namely: “code violation, abuse of racket, Mr McEnroe.” I can only imagine what went through McEnroe’s head a, but given what happened next it was probably along the lines of “call that abuse of racket? If you want to see some real abuse, get a load of this.” Whereupon he jumped from his chair, and this time switching to the forehand – albeit still double handed – he more or less destroyed the entire contents of the refreshment table. In the process managing to shower the King of Sweden, sitting in the front row, with lemon barley water.


Golf is another mostly individual sport high up the league table of mental implosions, and if you were to pick a winner here it would be a close run thing between Jean van de Velde at the Open at Carnoustie in 1999, and Greg Norman at the US Masters in 1996. The Frenchman, needing no worse than a double bogey six at the par four 18th to win, somehow managed to make seven and lost in a play-off. But it was more the manner of his seven which was memorable, taking off his shoes and socks, rolling up his trouser legs, and staring at a ball almost entirely submerged in the water. Norman’s collapse in the final round of the Masters, when he surrendered a six-shot lead to Nick Faldo, was equally painful to watch. So much so, that the resident turtles in Rae’s Creek eventually decided not to watch, diving for the safety of the bottom after being constantly depth charged by Greg’s golf balls. I remember an American commentator whispering into his mic, “Greg Norman, trying to stop the bleeding...” except that this wasn’t the kind of blood you could stem with an Elastoplast. This was a major artery. By the end the Great White Shark had become the Great White Fish Finger, and Faldo ended up winning by five. Collapses are pretty frequent in cricket, the kind of game in which the dislodging of a single pebble can bring on an avalanche. So it was in a match between Surrey and Lancashire in the 1993 Benson and Hedges Cup at the Oval, when Surrey, 212 for 1 needing another 25 to win from 35 balls, lost their last nine wickets for 18. Boxing’s biggest meltdown came in Las Vegas in 1997 when Mike Tyson, fighting Evander Holyfield for the world heavyweight title, appeared to mistake the bell for the dinner gong and bit a chunk from his opponent’s ear. Boxers are well known for getting cauliflower ears, but when Tyson sank his teeth into Holyfield’s, you wondered whether this one might have had cheese sauce on it. This kind of mental implosion doesn’t come as much of a shock in a sport as primeval as boxing, but Zinedine Zidane’s headbutt on an Italian defender in the 2006 World Cup – deliberate, violent, and artistic enough to have been turned into a Quentin Tarantino movie – was quite an eyebrow raiser. It later emerged that Marco Materazzi had made some unflattering remark about Zidane’s sister, but the most remarkable thing of all about this one was that it was one of those highly unusual cases a footballer meriting medical attention after falling over, as opposed to an Oscar.  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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24/09/2016 20:20

Feature /// Winter health

DON’T BE SAD, BE GLAD! With winter around the corner we’ve got some great advice on keeping your mind and body fit and firing despite the darker days THE NIGHTS ARE DRAWING in and, for many people, the thought of cosy evenings by the fire, roast dinners, beautiful autumnal scenery, golden light, Christmas and even a spot of snow is something to look forward to. But there is a downside to the enveloping darkness. The winter blues, or seasonal affective disorder (SAD), affects around two million people in the UK, it is thought, and although you might not think it impinges on you, by January or February most people are heartily sick of the darkness and the cold, and while they might not rate the effects as full-on SAD or depression, there are still plenty of ways to beat the blues. It wasn’t that long ago that the vast majority of the population worked outside, but today this figure is down to less than 10%. This is not a problem during summer months with longer daylight hours, but during the winter indoor workers operate under artificial lighting and see little, if any real sunlight. Research has now established that a lack of sunlight can disrupt the balance of the brain’s chemistry, and it is believed that the

combination of long dark winter nights together with the colder temperature contributes towards this depressive disorder. During the hours of darkness the pineal gland produces a chemical called melatonin which makes us feel drowsy and signals the time for sleep. Exposure to sunlight prevents the production of melatonin whilst increasing the production of a neuro-transmitter called serotonin. When seasons change, the circadian rhythm (biological clock) in your body shifts due to the changes in daylight, and this can affect the body’s production of serotonin and hormones. It has been discovered that disruption to the body’s circadian rhythms together with a decreased production of serotonin can trigger depression. So why not try some of these tips: not only will they help you fight the fog of winter woe, they’ll also have the benefit of getting you fitter and healthier in body, as well as mind.

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Feature /// Winter health


Spending time outdoors helps ease symptoms of SAD, and experts suggest trying to get outside within two hours of waking up. Whether it’s cloudy or sunny, spending some time in the daylight can be a big help: research has shown that a daily one-hour walk in the middle of the day could be as helpful as light treatment for coping with the winter blues. Regular exercise is a powerful way to fight seasonal depression, especially if you’re able to exercise outside in natural daylight. It can boost serotonin, endorphins and other feel-good brain chemicals. Exercise can treat mild to moderate depression as effectively as anti-depressants. Aim for 30 to 60 minutes of activity on most days. Even something as simple as walking a dog can be good exercise.


Go outdoors as much as possible, especially at midday and on brighter days. Indoors, choose pale colours that reflect light and sit near windows whenever you can. Even on the darkest days, there is still more daylight getting through the cloud than it is possible to obtain from artificial lighting.


Oily fish Eskimos don’t get SAD even in the polar winters as they eat fish,so include oily fish or flax seeds in meals, which contain omega-3 oils and vitamin D. Vitamin D This often needs topping up as vitamin D is the

sunshine vitamin, so less is made by your skin in the winter as we are indoors more of the time and wear more clothes when we are outside. It can be found in egg yolks, and cow’s and goat’s milk. Nuts and seeds These make sure you have enough of the minerals zinc, selenium and boron which are all needed for brain activity. Meats and fish These contain Vitamin B12 which is needed for efficient metabolism and good mental function. Turkey and bananas Beneficial as they contain the protein tryptophan, which is the chemical needed to make serotonin and melatonin. Melatonin is the hormone that reacts to daylight and controls our sleep, helps regulate blood pressure and

reproductive cycles. Serotonin is a neurotransmitter which contributes to us feeling happy and avoiding depression. Dark chocolate Just a small square contains polyphenols to help with feeling happy and relieving anxiety. Raspberries and blueberries Raspberries and blueberries help control the release of cortisol with which is released if you are stressed and negatively affects memory and emotions. Coffee One cup of coffee can help in the mornings but too many can hinder the production of seratonin. Remember to eat regularly to make sure your body has energy when it needs it, so make sure you have breakfast to start the day. Avoid foods with lots of sugar instead eat complex carbohydrates such as brown rice and bread, porridge and wholewheat pasta to give a steady energy flow. A brisk walk or other exercise helps to keep blood flowing round the body so nutrients get to the parts of the body where they are needed and toxins cleared out. If you need help with looking through your diet to identify deficiencies or imbalances which can cause SAD, depression or lethargy, poor sleeping or generally feeling unwell, contact Jane Sanders on 01832 226495, email jsandersnutrition@yahoo.com or Facebook Jane Sanders Nutrition

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25/09/2016 11:03

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Feature /// Winter health


It has been found that being cold makes you more depressed. It’s also been shown that staying warm can reduce the winter blues by half. Keep warm with hot drinks and hot food, and wear warm clothes and shoes, and aim to keep your home between 18C and 21C.


Doctors may prescribe light therapy to reduce SAD symptoms, but just staring into your car headlights won’t do the job. Light therapy boxes give off light that mimics sunshine and can help in the recovery from seasonal affective disorder. The light from the therapy boxes is significantly brighter than that of regular light bulbs, and it’s provided in different wavelengths, so it is important to consult a doctor before buying one, as they cost around £100. Typically, if you have SAD, you sit in front of a light box for about 30 minutes a day. This will stimulate your body’s circadian rhythms and suppress its natural release of melatonin. Most people find light therapy to be most effective if used when they first get up in the morning. A study published in 2014 in the Journal of Affective Disorders found that one week of light therapy can sometimes do the job, although most people continue light therapy throughout the entire season that they’re affected.


Dawn simulators can help some people. These

devices are alarm clocks, but rather than waking you abruptly with loud music or beeping, they produce light that gradually increases in intensity, just like the sun. Different models of dawn simulators are available, but the best ones use full-spectrum light, which is closest to natural sunlight. Researchers found that dawn simulators were as effective as light therapy for people with mild SAD, according to a study published in 2015 in the Journal of Affective Disorders, while another study found that people woke up with dawn simulation did better on the cognitive tests and reported improved mood and well-being, during the day. This seems to be linked to raised levels of cortisol – your wake up and get on with the day hormone - on waking.


Aromatherapy may also help those with seasonal disorder. The essential oils can influence the area of the brain that’s responsible for controlling moods and the body’s internal clock that influences sleep and appetite. You can add a few drops of essential oils to your bath at night to help you relax. Essential oils from the poplar tree in particular were found to help depressive disorders in a study published in 2015 in the Journal of Natural Medicines. Citrus oils have a general cheering and uplifting action on the emotions, while floral oils work on the more subtle energies to help to fight feelings of sadness, melancholy or even guilt which may be brought about by the condition.


People who live with SAD often have trouble sleeping at night and getting up in the morning. Maintaining a regular schedule improves sleep, which can help alleviate symptoms of seasonal depression. Keeping a regular schedule will also expose you to light at consistent and predictable times, and eating at regular intervals can help you watch your diet and not overeat. Many people who live with SAD find they gain weight in the winter, studies have found.

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Café Ventoux Wattbike Studio On the 1st of October the Café Ventoux Wattbike Studio will be open to our customers. Join us for this exciting launch, meet the team from Wattbike as well as Ian Wilson, founder of Wattbike. The Wattbike team will be demonstrating the bikes and answering any questions. We will also have a special ride out with professional cyclist Yanto Barker of OnePro Cycling Team and founder of Le Col Cycle Clothing. The team from Le Col will be showcasing the new AW 16/17 clothing range and to mark this special occasion there will be 15% off all Le Col clothing on the day.

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Autumn Events at Oakham Castle GET ACTIVE THIS AUTUMN! 18th October 6-7pm: Candlelit yoga and mindfulness 19th October 10-11am: Frozen themed Children’s Yoga 19th October 6-7pm: Crime and Punishment Walking Tour

30th October 12.30-3.30pm: Diwali Crafts 20th November 12.30-3.30pm: Medieval Christmas Crafts – pomanders, wreaths and gilding

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23/09/2016 17:19

Feature /// Winter health GO ON HOLIDAY

It might be the expensive option, but an easy way to avoid the dark and cold is not to be in them. We’ve all been there on holiday, even in summer, where a bright, warm morning abroad makes you feel a million dollars. The effect of winter sun can be even more potent, and you don’t always have to go long haul to the other side of the world to find it.

Here are some great places to go this winter: Mauritius The Mauritius beaches are still tropical paradises, and here you can rent a car and go exploring to find your own deserted cove, drive or hike up into its rainforested hills, take a boat out and go snorkelling or dive in its extraordinary underwater world. Tenerife The ‘Island of Eternal Spring’ loses none of its spring during the winter months with temperatures in the 20’s throughout the northern European winter. The Canaries have always been popular with British tourists whatever the time of year. Muscat, Oman Muscat is one of the lesser known winter sun destinations but is fast becoming a popular alternative for a winter getaway. Unlike its more illustrious neighbours Dubai and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, Muscat combines the authentic Middle Eastern experience with stunning architecture. Malta Set between Sicily and the North African coast with a mild winter, low rainfall and five or six hours of sunshine every day during the chilliest season, Malta has a turbulent and colourful

history, ruled by a series of occupiers with the prehistoric remains, fortresses, temples, burial chambers and eclectic Mediterranean cuisine to prove it. Costa del Sol Spain has always been one of the most attractive winter sun destinations for Northern Europeans. With its relatively short flight time, reasonable costs and pleasant climate, the Costa del Sol on the south coast has a lot to offer the off-season traveller. Morocco The Atlantic coast of Morocco has warm winters (around 20°C) and long, sandy beaches. It’s a good choice for families who don’t want to fly too far but want a taste of the exotic. Seychelles With amazing beaches, reefs and jungle, it’s a great winter sun destination for diving, snorkelling and walking. The average winter temperature is 28°C with six to seven hours of sunshine every day. Cape Town Temperatures average 26°C with up to 11 hours of sunshine a day – the ultimate vitamin D fix amid long beaches and glorious scenery, and it’s only two hours ahead so jet lag isn’t a problem.


There’s nothing like starting a new activity to get the mind going and give you focus for a few months. It could be anything, from skydiving to playing bridge, singing, knitting, joining a gym, keeping a journal, or writing a blog. The important thing is that you have something to look forward to and concentrate on, and something to relieve stress and take your mind off the long dark evenings.

WHAT IS SAD? The symptoms of seasonal affective disorder (SAD) are similar to those of normal depression, but they occur repetitively at a particular time of year. They usually start in the autumn or winter and improve in the spring. The nature and severity of SAD varies from person to person. Some people just find the condition a bit irritating, while for others it can be severe and have a significant impact on their day-to-day life. DEPRESSION Most people with SAD will feel depressed during the autumn and winter. Signs that you may be depressed include: ● Persistent low mood ● Loss of pleasure or interest in normal everyday activities ● Feeling irritable ● Feelings of despair, guilt and worthlessness ● Low self-esteem ● Tearfulness ● Feeling stressed or anxious ● Reduced sex drive ● Becoming less sociable A small number of people will experience these symptoms in phases that are separated by “manic” periods where they feel happy, energetic and much more sociable. In addition to symptoms of depression, you may also: ● Be less active than normal ● Feel lethargic (lacking in energy) and sleepy during the day ● Sleep for longer than normal and find it hard to get up in the morning ● Find it difficult to concentrate ● Have an increased appetite – some people have a particular craving for foods containing lots of carbohydrates and end up gaining weight as a result ● These symptoms may make everyday activities increasingly difficult. Source www.nhs.uk

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GET YOUR BACK UP Stretching your hips will reduce lower back pain after prolonged sitting, writes Function Jigsaw’s Lauren Dobson DOES YOUR JOB require long periods of sitting or driving? Do you sit down to eat dinner and watch TV when you get home after a hard day at work? Maybe you maintain an active lifestyle the majority of the time but when you have to make that one long journey to visit the in-laws at the other side of the country you suffer with lower back pain for days? Without realising it, a high percentage of the population are ‘chronic sitters’. When we sit, our hips roll back into flexion. This then leads to a reduced

lumbar (lower back) curve, tightening the hip flexors and most importantly, causing lower back pain. Addressing the hip flexors There are too many effects of prolonged sitting to list in this one article and it is very much easier said than done for us to advise you to limit the amount of time sitting by taking regular breaks every 20 minutes. For those people who work in office jobs, the chances of having three breaks an hour would just be laughed at.

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ACTIVE BODY (prolonged hip flexion), it can pull on the lumbar spine, creating a sensation of tightness in the lower back. There are a number of different modified hip flexor stretches recommended by health professionals.

By addressing one major structure of the body, the hip flexors, this can help reduce your lower back pain and you can start the journey of reducing tightness in the lower back. Your lower back may be the area of which causes you the most pain, but you need to understand why it could be

occurring in the first place and get to the root of the problem to reduce the pain, and the frequency of it returning. One of the major hip flexor muscles, the psoas, not only flexes the hip, but is also attached to the five lowest vertebra of the spine. When the psoas shortens and tightens due to the sitting position

EXERCISES TO HELP: http://functionjigsaw.co.uk/blog/ bad-back-pain-tips-help/

Other issues caused by long periods of sitting are... • Weakened abdominal/core muscles • Thoracic spine and ribs tightness and reduced mobility • Poor muscle function of the hips, spine and shoulders Some of these can be treated simply by basic glute and core exercises, selfmassage using the Active Foam Roller and movement exercises throughout the day. Why not try adapting your daily routine, involving various stretches and selfmassage techniques to get you through your working week with less pain?

@FunctionJigsaw info@functionjigsaw.co.uk www.functionjigsaw.co.uk

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accumulate in rivers, lakes and coastal areas and they are difficult to break down. Fish will only contain very small levels of P-C-Bs; however, pregnant women should limit consumption to two portions per week as excessive amounts can lead to development and neurological problems in a developing foetus. ARE THERE OTHER SOURCES OF OMEGA-3? There are other plant-based sources of omega-3, such as flaxseed oil, chia seeds, walnuts and walnut oil, fish roe, soy beans, linseeds or linseed oil, rapeseed oil, pumpkin seeds and spinach. All contain varying levels of essential nutrients, however if you are vegetarian or simply do not eat fish, you may struggle to meet the recommended levels of Omega-3 and supplementation may therefore be necessary.

WATCH YOUR OMEGA-3 Nutritional adviser Helen Cole on the health benefits of omega-3, and the best foods to find it in Did you know that Eskimos are said to have fewer than average heart attacks and strokes? It is believed that the reason for this is that their diet consists mainly of oily fish, which is the best source of omega-3 – an essential fatty acid that helps to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases, some cancers, age-related vision loss and dementia. HOW MUCH DO WE NEED? Eating the recommended amount of omega-3 can lower blood pressure and reduce fat build up in the arteries. We should aim to eat two portions of fish a week, including an oily one, such as salmon, fresh tuna, sardines, trout or mackerel, in order to consume enough omega-3 (3g per week). This, of course, is dependent on portion size and some of us may need to eat more than two portions. Most adults only manage a third of a portion, and teenagers only a tenth. DOES ALL OILY FISH CONTAIN THE SAME AMOUNT OF OMEGA-3? The amount of omega-3 present in oily fish varies greatly. The table to the right shows

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how much omega-3 is present in 100g of each type. The good news is, it is not just oily fish – shellfish and white fish are also good sources. TYPE OF FISH (raw unless stated) Omega-3 per 100g Cod 70mg Fresh tuna 80mg King prawns 110mg Plaice 160mg Squid 400mg Mussels (boiled) 570mg Brown/white crab meat (boiled) 585mg Rainbow trout 1,030mg Sardines 1,110mg Seabass 1,200mg Farmed salmon 2,210mg Mackerel 2,600mg CAN WE EAT TOO MUCH OF IT? As stated, oily fish is the best source of omega-3 as it contains the long-chain type that is thought to be most beneficial to our health. Oily fish can, however, contain high levels of an environmental pollutant called polychlorinated biphenyls (P-C-Bs). These are highly toxic industrial chemicals that

OMEGA-3 AND ATHLETIC PERFORMANCE Studies have shown that Omega-3 fatty acids can improve strength and endurance training as well as reduce post-workout soreness. Consuming the recommended levels can improve oxygen and nutrient delivery to cells, enhance aerobic metabolism, increase energy levels and stamina, increase exercise duration and intensity, improve the release of the growth hormone in response to sleep and exercise, it is anti-inflammatory thus prevents joint, tendon and ligament strains and it can assist injury healing. TOP TIPS TO HELP YOU BOOST YOUR OMEGA-3 INTAKE • Start meal planning and ensure you include fish in at least one evening meal and one lunch per week • Get creative with lunches and swap your sandwich for a smoked trout or mackerel salad • Swap your Friday night steak for a fresh tuna steak • Occasionally swap chicken for salmon or prawns in your stir fry • Swap mince for crab meat in your favourite pasta dish • Switch to rapeseed or walnut oil for cooking and salad dressings • Add a handful of walnuts and pumpkin seeds to your usual breakfast cereal • Swap lettuce or other salad leaves for baby spinach • Swap your weekend ‘bacon and eggs’ for smoked salmon and scrambled eggs or kippers.

Information in this article is provided by Future Fit Training and figures are taken from the NHS guidelines.

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THE FINISHING TOUCHES You’ve done all the hard work in the gym, playing sports and getting fit, so now is the time to reap the benefits and add the finishing touches… Edited by Mary Bremner

WINTER WARDROBE Winter is just around the corner so it’s time to look at your wardrobe. But you don’t have to go mad – if you streamline with just a few key pieces it can scream new season but without you having to spend a fortune. Long leather skirts are very on trend at the moment. Marks and Spencer stock a lovely one at £199. Metallic trousers are very ‘in’ but I think you have to be a certain age and size to be able to carry these off. It would be too easy to look like an oven ready turkey or, heaven forbid, mutton dressed as lamb. To go with these separates wear a roll neck; if you can run to cashmere even better. Another look that is very ‘now’ this autumn is the cable knit. Perfect for keeping warm as well as looking stylish.

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You can wear this with your leather skirt or trousers and, to add to the chunky look even more, add a heavy boot. These boots are perfect for winter – warm, waterproof and low heeled, so no slipping on ice. I like these boots with long skirts. Everyone was wearing the fur hooded parka last year and I’m sure they will again this winter. What’s not to like? A warm coat that you can snuggle into to keep the elements out. But to be slightly different this year have a look at a trench coat. This classic coat just never goes out of style. You don’t have to spend a fortune, but it could be wise to invest slightly as you will wear this coat for years. And there you have it. A couple of tweaks and you’ve got a whole new winter wardrobe!

And finally... The latest fashions to show off

Flat military ankle boots £35.99 www.zara.com

SCIENTIFIC SOLUTIONS TO AGEING SKIN Nu Skin is an American company that specialises in skin care and anti-ageing products. It has a patented age lock gel that is proven to unlock your youth cells that, sadly, start to work less effectively once your are over the age of 30. Catherine, the Nu Skin health and beauty executive I visited, said she would give me half a facial so I could see the results. The gel is administered to the face using galvanic currents. This uses a clever little machine that pushes the gel further into the skin. Basically it’s like administering a spa facial to yourself. The cleansing gel was rubbed into my skin first and then the galvanic spa was smoothed over my face for two minutes. This gel deep cleanses, attracting old make up/pollution/acne from your face. This was wiped off and the age lock gel applied, this time for three minutes. And that was it... there are no fillers or botox, just a lot of science.

Having half your face done is the perfect marketing tool as you can see the results. The lines around my mouth had just about disappeared and my jawline appeared tighter. Half an hour later the whole side of my face appeared brighter, my skin was tighter and felt smoother. My treatment will last 24 hours but if you do as recommended and use it twice a week the effects become permanent. The best thing about this treatment is that you can buy the Nu Skin Galvanic Spa System and administer it yourself. Nu Skin also sells other products including tooth whitening paste, a mud mask and a lip gloss that stimulates the collagen. Contact Catherine Kaye who can talk you through the products. You can find her on Facebook (positive thoughts for positive action or Cathy’s Nu you health and beauty). 07787 505847. www. cathysnuyou.nsproducts.com.

Classic trench coat £60 www.asos.com

Cashmere roll neck jumper £85 www.johnlewis.com

SPECIAL OCCASION HAIR Tying your hair up can be difficult. Getting it up in the first place can be tricky and getting it to stay in position nigh on impossible. I always worry that one shake of the head and the whole lot will fall down, despite it being copiously sprayed with hairspray. Your arms ache trying to pin it up and how on earth do you know what it actually looks like as you don’t have ‘eyes in the back of your head’? On days when it’s important for your hair to look good tied up – proms, weddings, balls – you need a bit of extra help. This is where a skilled hairdresser comes in. I have naturally curly hair that never looks sleek and I would feel very odd if it did. Because of this I wanted my updo to look slightly

informal and a bit messy. First of all the stylist used curling tongs on my hair to make the curls slightly more controlled. Then it was back combed (don’t worry it doesn’t damage your hair despite it looking a bit scary), and then she just pinned it up. I couldn’t see what she was doing so was dying to see the end result. It was perfect. The stylist had pinned my hair just as I asked. Slightly informal, a bit casual and very much me. Despite it being pinned so loosely it was very firm. A quick head bang in the salon proved this. And it stayed in position all day and evening with lots of complimentary comments along the way. Prices start at £32.50.

Leather full pleated skirt £199 www.marksandspencer.com

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Feature /// Sportsman's Dinner

The Bewicke Arms, Hallaton Kate and Eleanor give top marks to this pub's new autumn menu Eleanor The last time I came here was to watch the Tin Pigeons. That was when they were just starting out as a new band. And this year they played the Leeds festival – what a step up! Kate I’m sure they’re very grateful to all the local venues for supporting them along the way. I bet the Bewicke was a great place to come and watch them as it has such a lively, busy atmosphere, but at the same time it feels really welcoming. There are loads of different areas to sit and eat in: the Saddle bar and Bottle Kicking bar are full tonight and if you’re in a big group, you wouldn’t go far wrong booking a few tables in the restaurant. With the woodburner, coir matting, rugs and polished wooden floors all over the pub I bet it’s a super cosy spot in the winter. Eleanor It’s starting to feel quite autumnal today for the first time so it’s good they’ve introduced the new menus. It’s all about soup, pumpkins, pears and crumble. There are lots of fish starters so I’m having the tiger prawns, lemongrass, ginger, chilli and coriander (£7). That should warm me up a bit. Kate I fancy the spinach and goats cheese soup

with toasted almonds and truffle oil (£5). I’m not normally keen on goat’s cheese because of the texture but as it’s now melted into the soup the consistency is different and it’s absolutely delicious. The almonds give it a great bite and as the soup is such a vivid green I feel like I’m eating a bowl full of goodness. Ten out of ten I’d say. How are your prawns? Eleanor There’s certainly a kick to them and as they’re semi-peeled, they’re very easy to eat! The chefs like to source their ingredients locally when they can so next I’m having the Launde Farm lamb chump, roast pumpkin, borlotti beans, chestnuts and sage (£17). The lamb is beautifully pink and served with a deep, rich jus and the chestnuts are gorgeous. Do you remember when we picked and roasted chestnuts one holiday in Italy? Kate I do, it was fun but I’m afraid I don’t like chestnuts. Again, I think it’s the texture. It’s strange because I love beans and pulses. I’ve gone for ragu of pork shoulder, morteaux sausage and butter beans (£13.50) and the beans are cooked perfectly – not mushy at all. And, as well as being very pretty to look at, the girolle mushrooms are also delicious. I have to say the

food is really imaginative and well presented – all those colours! The landlord Simon has a strong team here and Damon the general manager is great fun front of house. I can see why the locals like coming here so much. Eleanor For pudding I fancied the lemon tart with passion fruit sorbet because I wanted to compare it to one I tasted in Australia, which was supposedly the best in Queensland. Unfortunately they’ve run out which shows it must be popular. Not to worry, we can share the chocolate mousse tart (£6). It is a truly massive portion and very rich as well. What’s not to like? Kate I agree, and we can always come back again for the sorbet. Even though we don’t live far away I feel tempted to book one of the bedrooms upstairs and hunker down here one winter’s evening. I bet the breakfasts are a treat too.

The Bewicke Arms 1 Eastgate, Hallaton, Market Harborough, LE16 8UB. 01858 555734.

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Feature /// Great walks


l lies eight Illston on the Hil st of Leicester miles south ea ous hill is and the eponym ove sea level. 176 metres ab

Illston-On-The-Hill It might not be far from the outskirts of Leicester but you would never know it from the blissful rural peace of this walk, as Will Hetherington discovers Photography: Will Hetherington

Difficulty rating (out of five)


Park on the western edge of Illston on the Hill all the way down Main Street past the Fox & Goose pub. There is plenty of space to park where the road becomes a dead end. The footpath starts immediately from here so just park and head off. Go through the gate and keep going straight across the very small sheep pasture. There is another gate hidden in the far corner which leads you on to the path around the field, down into the dip and then up the other side to Illston Grange. Make sure you take the northern route on the way out, which will take you to the north side of the imposing grange and its hilltop location. Once you have crossed the fenced-in

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horse paddock on this side of the grange make sure you head diagonally across the last big grazing field to hit the road at the right spot. It’s not particularly well signposted but if you consult your OS map it’s easy to work out. When you get to the road cross over and pick up the footpath on the field side of the hedge. From here the path runs along the edge of the first field before cutting away and downhill across another couple of fields towards Burton Overy. When you get to Burton Overy head south down the Scotland Road which becomes Main Street and then past the attractive church and when you get to the Bell pub take the left turn out of the village, unless you need a quick refreshment, of course. The road climbs out of the village and less than 100 yards after a cattle grid the path heads off to the left over the cow pasture. You soon come to another road where a quick left/right turn will see you back on the fields heading towards

Illston. After another classic Leicestershire countryside dip, cross another road and into the grounds of Illston Grange. Keep following your OS map and your sense of direction to pick up the footpath over the brow of the hill and then drop down into another dip before the final hill back to the car, or perhaps the Fox & Goose…


➛ ➛


Where to park Past the Fox & Goose on Main Street in Illston on the Hill. Distance and time Four miles/an hour and a half.

Highlights Superb Leicestershire rolling countryside and sheer tranquility. Lowlights I didn’t come across any fresh water for the dogs so be warned if it’s warm. Also some of the pathways are not clearly signposted. Refreshments The Bewicke Arms in nearby Hallaton is a good option, otherwise the The Fox & Goose in Illston on the Hill or The Bell in Burton Overy. Difficulty rating Fours paws. There are a lot of ups and downs on this route so it’s tough on the legs. The pooch perspective Almost total absence of running fresh water could be a problem on a warm day. Otherwise there were some cattle and sheep at various points around the route. 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.


Clockwise, from le

Typical Leicestershire rolling country; the view of Carlton Curlieu from the return section of this walk; the church in Burton Overy; Burton Overy is the halfway mark

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Sports Courses for October Half-Term at Uppingham

• Hockey and Netball sports coaching camps for 7-14 year olds at Uppingham School • All abilities welcome • Thursday and Friday 27th and 28th October • Cost £88 For more information or to book, please contact: www.uppinghamsummerschool.co.uk summerschool@uppingham.co.uk Like us on Facebook

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Feature /// School sport

Go GOLD funding available for talented local athletes The funding for Leicester-Shire & Rutland Sport (LRS), through the GO GOLD Funding Programme, is now open for applicants. The aim of GO GOLD is to support local talented athletes who are being recognised by their national governing bodies of sport as being future Olympic, Paralympic, Special Olympic and Commonwealth Games participants. The 2016/17 programme will close on October 28. The programme is spilt into two funding awards – podium and performance. Podium level funding For athletes competing at regional, national or international level in an Olympic, Paralympic or Commonwealth discipline. This level is funded by Leicestershire County Council, Leicester City Council and Rutland County Council. All eligible applicants will be automatically be put forward for podium level funding. Councillor Ernie White, Leicestershire County Council’s cabinet member for health, said: “The Olympics and Paralympics have highlighted the levels of sporting excellence which competitors can reach. “The backing which GO GOLD gives to county sportspeople helps them to take the first step towards emulating these recent performances as well as inspiring others to have a go for themselves, even if it’s only for fun. There’s a wealth of evidence that an active life is essential for physical and mental health and wellbeing.” Performance level funding Unsuccessful applicants at podium level will be automatically referred to their local authority for

During 2015/16, 109 GO GOLD funding grants were awarded across 25 sports at podium level. These included: Lizzie Warner, Archery – Blaby Still aged just 16 years old, Lizzie has had a season to remember! Following a frustrating winter of injury, Lizzie was selected as a reserve for the European Youth Championships. Aer a hard training spell, Lizzie came back to true form quickly and successfully retained her National Outdoor title for the fourth consecutive year. Over the summer came the experience of a lifetime when Lizzie was the only female Archer to be selected to travel to Rio De Janiero, Brazil as a part of the British Olympic Association Ambition Programme. The aim of this programme was to give Lizzie an experience of the Olympic Games in preparation for Tokyo 2020. Elliott Powell, Athletics (200m) – Leicester Aer three tremendous years of progression and improvements, Elliott became a GO GOLD Ambassador in 2015/16 following a successful season on the track where he became European Junior Silver Medallist. Elliott has followed through with another strong, consistent year of performances seeing personal bests in the 100m, winning silver at the UK Under 23 Championships and making the 200m final at the British Championships/Olympic trials.

GO GOLD has previously supported Rio Olympic athletes Emily Scarratt from Desford and Jonny Walton from Kirby Muxloe. Emily captained Team GB’s Women’s Rugby 7s Team to a 4th place finish, and Jonny Walton who with his Rowing Double Scull partner, finished fih, which capped excellent Olympic debuts. Cyclist Dan McLay from Charnwood has also been supported by GO GOLD and rides with Fortuneo-Vital Concept. Dan competed in the Tour of Britain with the Great Britain Team this year, finishing seventh overall in the points standing. Current GO GOLD athletes Megan Jones was selected as a travelling reserve with the Women’s Rugby 7s Team and Lizzie Warner (Archery) and Andrew Stamp (Gymnastics) attended through Team GB’s Rio 2016 Ambition Programme.

a performance grant (£100) if their local authority is participating in the programme. This level is funded by Charnwood Borough Council, Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council, Leicester City Council, Melton Borough Council, North West Leicestershire District Council, Oadby and Wigston Borough Council and Rutland County Council. Unfortunately Blaby District Council and Harborough District Council are no longer able to support the programme at performance level.

Athletes should be aged 14-23 years on September 1, 2016, and applications from athletes who are 12-13 years old may be considered only if they are competing at national/international level. Applicants must live in Leicestershire, Leicester city or Rutland and attend the local school system. If athletes are currently studying away at university, their parents’/non-term time address should be in Leicestershire, Leicester or Rutland.

Silver for Maddie at UK Schools Games Oakham sport scholar Maddie Pearce has won a silver medal at the UK School Games, a competition for the UK’s elite school-age athletes. Maddie competed as part of England Blue against two other England teams and sides from Scotland, Wales and Ulster. Fellow Oakhamian sports scholar Abi Rawlins (pictured right with Maddie) was also competing at the games, playing for England White, whilst director of hockey James Bateman found success as head coach for the Boys’ England Blue team, who won silver medals. Maddie and her team-mates won their first two games in the pool stages, beating Wales 3-1 and England White 4-3. The final against England Red was a hotly-contested match, with an early goal

from England Blue putting them in the lead. However, England Red were on the attack in the second half, and eventually scooped a 4-1 win. “We are immensely proud of both Maddie and Abi for their performances at the UK School Games, and we especially congratulate Maddie on her silver medal,” said Bateman. “Gaining selection to this elite competition is a huge achievement in itself; the girls’ hard work with our expert coaching team has really paid off. I am sure their success will inspire many of our younger hockey players.” The coming year will now see two Oakhamians playing for the GB U23 development squad, with Form 7 sport scholar Lucas Ward playing for the equivalent men’s team. /// O C T O B E R 2 0 1 6 5 9

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Roundup The scores, star performers and stats from a month in local sport


Kibworth do the ‘double treble’ BY JEREMY BESWICK


ongratulations are due to Kibworth Town for yet another outstanding season. With three trophies safely in the cabinet for another winter, they’ve matched their heroics of last year to claim an historic ‘double treble’. First in the bag was the retention of the Premiership title with three games to spare – which had been on the cards for some time, a combination of nine consecutive wins and their ability to get their ground fit for play when others were rained off giving them an impregnable lead some weeks ago. Treasurer Tim Neal said “This has been a fantastic team effort, including our ground staff as part of that extended team. It’s no coincidence that they managed to get cricket on during a period when our opponents couldn’t, and this allowed us to gain momentum that never really stopped”. Next up in the treble for Matt Craven’s men was the final of the County Cup at Grace Road against Barrow, where an excellent all round

performance in the field saw them restrict their opponents to 116. After collapsing to 49 for 3 themselves, Craven and Charlie Page-Morris, with 49 and 38, respectively saw them home with a full 18 overs remaining. So the scene was truly set for the third part of the piece - the League Cup final against Loughborough. In truth, opening bowlers Monik Patel and Mark Bashford all but settled matters in the first few overs with two wickets each as Loughborough stumbled to 16 for 4, eventually struggling on to only 97 all out with five overs unused. In reply, Craven and Sundeep Patel soon put the result beyond all doubt. They “set about the run chase with gusto and no little class,” said Neal. “Sunny launched two huge sixes into the valley behind, at least ensuring that the game would last a little bit longer whilst the balls were retrieved. Craves, not to be outdone then put his foot on the accelerator as the boundaries continued to flow and the partnership had plundered 70 from just 7 overs when Sunny departed for 29”. The

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one-sided contest finished shortly thereafter, with an enormous 27 overs to spare. Neal called the treble “an outstanding achievement” but said “there will be no complacency and plans are already underway for 2017 as we look to get KCC back on the national radar as a priority”. They will be joined in the Premiership next season by Kegworth, for whom Brent Williams has starred with the bat, and Enderby, both promoted from Division One. Market Harborough will remain there having survived a late relegation scare. With no less than seven consecutive matches cancelled or abandoned, they defeated Sileby on the last day to condemn Hinckley Town to the second relegation spot, Earl Shilton having been adrift at the foot of the table for some time. It was batsman Rob Taylor who settled their nerves early on as the opener played a classic innings for 110 and in spite of a small wobble when he was out – three wickets falling in quick succession – Max Collins and Jack O’Callaghan saw them safely home.

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Vox Fox Some time ago I’d booked my usual place in the press box for the Foxes’ last home game against Glamorgan, hoping to be present for an exciting promotion decider. Alas, in the intervening few weeks, the wheels had rather come off their push for promotion to Division One, with uncharacteristic consecutive defeats against Essex and Sussex but nevertheless I was hoping to see them show some form in this, their last match of the season and some positive signs that would bode well for the next campaign. As elite performance director Andrew McDonald had said about their run in ““There’s a lot to play for in the last three games, there are three opportunities to show how much we’ve improved in 2016 and we need to take them,” By the time I arrived they were all out for 96 before lunch– so you’ll understand that my faith was being sorely tested. I spoke to Aussie seamer Clint McKay about that and asked, as the visitors had won the toss and elected to field, if there had been some moisture in the wicket. “No, not really,” he told me, refusing to his credit to take that easy excuse saying:


Aussie seamer Clinton McKay in action for Leicestershire

“They bowled really well and it was just one of those strange mornings”. The remaining two sessions were much more encouraging, with the Foxes showing some backbone and refusing to lie down. Glamorgan were dismissed for a lead of just under a hundred – McKay himself leading the fight-back with three wickets for 12 – and openers Paul Horton and Angus Robson then all but levelled the match with an unbeaten 78 before stumps to restore a little pride. They were to go on to score a respectable 283 to balance the match. What did McKay think lay behind their recent run of bad form? “When you are trying to change something, alter a culture, it takes time,” he said. “We’re still a work in progress.” Last month skipper Mark Cosgrove had told me: “We don’t want to be the sort of yo-yo outfit that goes up and then comes down again – we want to be the best team in the country.” McKay agreed it might be a blessing in disguise to miss out this term and be stronger and more ready for elevation next season. “It’s now about our aim to build on firm foundations. This is a great chance to build something special at a great club. We’re in a good state and we’ll keep pressing”. I understand there are some major signings in the pipeline during the close season so ‘the project’ is still on track and there’s still every reason to be optimistic for next year.

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/// O C T OBE R 2016

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24/09/2016 17:48



The late, late show for Lions in Leicester derby win over South


eicester Lions opened their campaign with two wins but then suffered a reverse against Luctonians. The first match of the season, at home to Tynedale, saw them steal a last minute victory. There wasn’t much to choose between these sides last year, both games closely fought and the spoils shared and it proved to be the case again, although Lions started much the stronger and raced into a 19-0 lead with a try from Ethan Phillips and two from wing Devon Constant. Tynedale, to their credit, fought back manfully with two tries of their own before the break to leave the match finely balanced at 19-12, the gap quickly closing to four points after an early penalty. For the next 20 minutes both teams went toe-to-toe until the deadlock was broken following a yellow card for the Lions’ Sam Lewis. Tynedale’s Matt Outson gave them a narrow lead, the try coming with just eight minutes left but Lions were not to be denied and after what fourth official Mike Howkins called “a fast and furious” end period Lions’ Sam Benjamin’s pace settled matters with a try in the last play of the match. Director of rugby Ken Whitehead saw lots of positives: “We have had some exciting new players join the club and the work of head coach, Andy Key, is making an excellent impression”. Next up was the local derby away to South Leicester, which Lions were again fortunate to win with a late, late score. That result looked unlikely in a closely contested first half – so closely contested that three yellow cards were shared between the sides - with South finally

BY JEREMY BESWICK gaining the ascendancy with a penalty and then a try from centre Will Cave to give them a 10-0 lead. That man Constant put Lions back in the game early on in the second period, South’s Aaron Martin restoring the differential before, tit for tat, Lions’ Sam Benjamin brought them within a point. The final 10 minutes saw Lions camped in South’s half and, in spite of some resolute defending, Benjamin finally went over again to settle matters. South’s chairman Wayne Marsden was “disappointed to lose to the last play of the game” whereas Lions’ Whitehead was unsurprisingly more upbeat saying “Lions showed their class by the pressure at the end”. Although Lions fans won’t agree, a neutral might see some justice in the symmetry that saw Lions lose their next match to a last minute penalty in that aforementioned home game to Luctonians. Two early penalties for the visitors were wiped out by what Howkins called “a purple patch” of play by Lions in which they scored two tries – from the usual suspects. Constant went over on the left wing and Benjamin on the right to give them a useful-looking 14-6 lead after the first 40, yet it was only 5 minutes into the second when a sparkling try by Luctonians’ Charlie Grimes, converted by Louis Silver brought them within a point. After holding out for well over half an hour, indiscipline by the Lions handed Silver another opportunity which he nailed to make the final score 14-16. Apart from that defeat by Lions, South Leicester – enjoying only their second season

at this level it should be remembered – also lost their opening fixture away to Stourbridge by 19-13. Marsden was quick to see the positives though saying they “certainly played all the rugby and with a bit more game time under their belt, would have seen an opening win. Lots to work on from this positive start to the season”. There was only one score in it, South having led by 13-12 on the hour after an interception try from Gareth Clarke and penalties from Rickie Aley, but Stourbridge prop Tom Harrison was worked over the line from short range to steal it. However, there was more joy from the long journey to Harrogate. A first half try from Ryan Hough gave them a 7-3 lead and other opportunities were to go begging as South seemed comfortably on top before, according to South’s press officer Mick McNeill: “The game was turned around after a Morgan penalty for Harrogate, score 6-7, followed by a heel against the head which caught South napping; Edwards scooted over for a converted try.” Early in the second period Harrogate extended their lead to 16-7 but, as McNeill said: “From the touchline it always looked as if South could pull this round”. The comeback started with a try from Gareth Clarke, the conversion and a penalty then putting them into a narrow lead. McNeill takes up the story:“Rickie Aley then produced his party piece when his accurate cross field kick was collected superbly by Gareth Turner for a converted try. Aley then added a drop goal from distance, score 16-27, and just before the final whistle

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TIGERS TALK It’s been a shaky start to the season for the Tigers. Their two wins against Gloucester and Newcastle could have gone either way and the home defeat to Wasps, the first time they’ve won at Welford Road for eight years, was a source of much frustration for director of rugby Richard Cockerill who kept the players locked in the dressing room for well over half an hour aer the game. He said “We are too easy to play against at the moment. The stats don’t lie, conceding eight tries in two games is not good enough. It’s my fault and we will have to get on top of that and make sure we get better very quickly.” That was all in contrast to the positive mood at the pre-season press conference where Cockers had been bullish about having “a smaller squad but with better quality”, believing that new signing JP Pietersen was a player who would make a real difference to the side and that Manu Tuilagi was, aer a challenging period, “Psychologically and physically in good shape – back to where he was two years ago” and that this would be “a big year for him”. He went on “If everyone’s fit we’re good enough to win the Premiership and Europe”. All Tigers fans will be wishing Manu well but concerned that his current absence is again due to a tight groin, the area that gave him such difficulty for the last two seasons and at one point threatened his career. They’ll be hoping both his injury and Tigers current form are early season blips, which may well be the case. New club captain Tom Youngs will be doing his level best to turn things around. I asked Cockers if it had been an easy appointment to make. “He epitomises everything about us and we put a lot of stock on history and tradition. It’s about the quality of the person. He leads by example – all of the time, not just when it suits – and has a good work ethic. He puts other people first”. One of the bright spots last season was the form of Harry Thacker, once written off as too small but now surely on the verge of selection for the England Saxons. We sat down for a chat and he immediately raised the issue, responding to my opening “How are you doing” with “Working on growing” and explaining how the physios were putting him on the rack daily in the hope of stretching him a few inches. He agreed he’d had a good year. “ “Last season exceeded my expectations. Our new game plan suits me a bit more and I was fortunate to stay injury free”. The new pitch at Welford Road will help too. Harry agreed it had been looking a bit ropey last season, but it was a picture when I saw it. “I’ve not played on it yet but it looks great. Hopefully it’ll help us play in a more expansive style”. No doubt Cockers will be concentrating on shoring up the defence first.

the bonus point try was scored by Gareth Turner who got on the end of a lineout catch and drive”. Market Harborough opened with a win at Rushden, Ed Parker opening their account with a race to the touch line after a kick through from Josh Haynes and forward Michael Woodford then claimed their second try after some extended pressure. The


Harry Thacker in action

conditions were difficult, constant rain making it wet and slippery but that was no excuse for several off the ball incidents which eventually saw a player from each side red carded. In the second half Harborough started to play more fluent rugby rather than the combative tactics of their opponents and were duly rewarded with a second try for Parker.

Now firmly in the ascendancy, Josh Haynes was able to add what the club called “two sparkling tries” to win him man of the match and his team a 29-6 win. Sadly, they were to lose their second match – at home to Stamford – 19-24, tries by Ethan Godefroy and Michael Woodford and a highly promising debut from Fraser Harrop proving not quite enough. /// O C T OBE R 2016

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24/09/2016 17:46

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22/09/2016 09:33



Barber has a lively Burghley BY JULIA DUNGWORTH NIC O MOR GA N


nother year and another Burghley gone, and this year was no different with tremendous highs and lows experienced. Local rider Katie Barber loved every minute of it, with a slightly livelier than required dressage test. Then it was on to the cross-country where the first timers ate up the course until the Land Rover Folly quite close to the end, where the term ‘unseated rider’ has never been used so descriptively, as poor Katie got jumped clean out the plate. Mark Kyle was also there riding Jesmond Justice, and they put in a credible 51.8 in the dressage, followed by a clear cross-country. However, again it was not to be their year with Mark then having a very uncharacteristic six down in the show jumping which left them finishing in 27th place. John-Paul Sheffield won the prestigious Dubarry Young Event Horse five year old Class on the Friday on For Certain II. It was a very convincing win, some three marks ahead of his nearest rival. JP was especially pleased as the five-year old by Lux Z hasn’t taken that well to cross-country so far. Plenty of time to get that bit sorted! JP also had three others entered and is fast making a name for himself as a talented producer of young stock. Willa Newton from near Melton Mowbray had her first big win of her career in the highly sought-after 8-9 Year CIC*** held at Blenheim Palace the week after Burghley. Willa was sixth after the dressage on a score of 38.4 on Caja 20; they added just two cross-country time penalties to their score in some very wet ground conditions to take the top spot. Elsewhere, the local show jumping community have been excelling themselves. Joss Williams had his first Hickstead win on Culmore Prospect in the 1.40 class, and he also had a young Lux Z horse there which was placed in the Newcomers; his mare Tia did a


Katie Barber in action at Burghley

good double clear to be placed in the 1.10m. Joss also travelled to the Guernsey Horse of the Year Show the week before, where he won a plethora of sashes and trophies for winning the Guernsey Grand Prix on Sox, and joint first in the Puissance jumping a whopping 1.84cm! Holly Smith had a very successful month which started with her trip to the Scope Festival in Staffordshire, winning several classes, including the 1.40 Speed Final. Holly also won the Medium Tour Speed Final on

Jane Heerbeck’s Carolus K. She also won the B&C Champion on Grennanstown Sarco Luxhill and managed to pull off a Working Hunter win in between all of that, to receive her tenth qualification for HOYS. However, the most impressive win came at the Thame Show, again riding Carolus where they jumped one handed with a glass of champagne in the other, the aim being to leave the fence up and not spill any champers, Holly jumped 1.50m without spilling a drop, Hats off to that! /// O C T OBE R 2016

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24/09/2016 17:46



All change at Oadby BY JEREMY BESWICK


t’s all change at Oadby Town where the new management team of Graham Chambers and Dave Clay are rebuilding the club. Chambers told me: “Our objective for the season has to be to survive in step 5. Due to the hiatus before our appointment, when we arrived there were no players left at all, no pre-season plan, nothing”. Urgent recruitment of a new young squad followed and, perhaps unsurprisingly, their first pre-season friendly had been a 7-1 defeat, so they would have faced the first match of the campaign, away to Cogenhoe with some trepidation. One down after 20 minutes, they managed to survive to the break, Chambers’ half-time team talk was: “Were they that much better than us? If not, don’t be afraid, back yourselves.” His theme obviously struck a chord because the youngsters did just that, drawing level with a penalty and then taking the lead with a beautifully struck free kick from Burton. There was still half an hour to go and although Chambers said it felt like an age, they hung on for a famous victory. Since that opening day they’ve made a decent fist of it with another win against Wellingborough in the cup and three draws and four losses in the league. The squad is so young – “Our oldest player against Holbeach was only 20,” said Chambers – it will only improve with time. We’re playing entertaining football. “We’re never predictable. The football has been excellent but the results mixed. There’s a good vibe about the place”. It’s not just on the playing side that the club needs rebuilding. “We need a kit man, a physio and all sorts of help,” said Chambers. “Everyone here, players, ourselves, everybody are volunteers now so come and join us”. Another side with a young first team are

Lutterworth Athletic. This club was founded as recently as 1993 and has had no fewer than seven promotions in the intervening years. Rather like Harborough Town, they are a hot bed of football with 24 sides including vets, ladies, youth and juniors and chairman Mike English was delighted to see so many of the youth team make the seniors this season “We’ve put four 17 to 18 year olds into the first team and the same number into the reserves” he told me. “They’ve done really well and the reserve side is top of its league. They’ve certainly got the technical ability but attention to detail can wander sometimes. “They can be a bit naive because of their youth but they’re learning every game and will grow in confidence”. Both the ladies team and the vets are, like the reserves, top of their league. “Our ambition is to get all of our sides, even the five and six year olds, to the top.” With so many teams feeding the peak of the triangle, the future looks bright. It even works for the vets, with eight of the side having played in the inaugural first team in 1993. After a somewhat dodgy start, Harborough Town have steadied the ship and are a now in a good run of form with four wins and a draw. Perhaps their best performance to date was against Wisbech Town. One up at the break after a goal from Billy Shepherd, he then laid on a tap-in for Barnes Gladman. Wisbech pulled one back but immediately afterwards a penalty from captain Ben Williams restored the two-goal cushion. According to the club’s Gary Wainwright: “Harborough were now in complete control of the game and playing some neat football and it was no surprise when we added a foufth.” Alex McMillan was the scorer with a curled shot from the edge of the area... “the goal of the game,” according to Wainwright.

VOX FOX Another chapter in Leicester City’s fairytale opened with their debut in the European Champions League – and there was no sign of an unhappy ending for their fans any time soon as they comfortably dispatched Club Brugge 3-0, and it could have been more. As they enjoyed the elegant squares and bars of this historic city, some might have reflected that it’s not that long ago that they were in Hartlepool at this time of year for the first round of the Johnstone’s Paint Trophy. Charming though Hartlepool undoubtedly is, that’s some contrast. Claudio Ranieri said aerwards: “It is history because the first match we won away. It was important. I was a little scared at the beginning because Brugge had a chance to score. Then suddenly, the first action saw us score a goal with Marc Albrighton. “He deserved it because he’s a hard worker and it was good. Aer this, we were more calm and we could play our own match. Brugge had control of the ball and moved it well, but we had control of the match”. Never satisfied he added: “We scored three goals but I don’t think it was a perfect performance. We can improve a lot.” So, how did Marc Albrighton, who’d scored that first ever goal in the competition aer just five minutes, feel about it? He sounded, well, quite pleased really. “It’s massive. I’m not going to play it down because it’s probably one of the biggest achievements of my career so far. It’s massive for me and my family because it will live with me forever. I can always look back and say I’ve done that”. He added: “Just to be there is sensational and to score is just that one better. For everything that my family have done for me and supported me throughout, it’s massive for me, but it’s massive for them as well. It’s something that I’m sure they’re all proud.” He might have mentioned how massive it was, don’t you think?

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Profile for Active Magazine

Active Magazine // South Leicestershire // October 2016  

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

Active Magazine // South Leicestershire // October 2016  

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