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e With thnny e v a Aberg icle Chron


The Spring Issue March / April Issue 12 / 2012 £1.50 - where sold

& Diary Magazine

■ Style & Fashion ■ Home & Garden ■ Entertainment ■ Competitions ■ Local Events ■ Travel ... and much more ...


The Spring Issue

March / April



With theny ven Aberga cle Chroni


The Spring Issue

Welcome to the March edition of the Gazette and Diary magazine. For all you lovely Mummies out there we wish you a Happy Mothers Day, don't forget to check out our Mothers Day pages.

March / April Issue 12 / 2012 £1.50 - where sold

& Diary Magazine

In this months edition we have ample to keep you occupied, including our Diary dates which means you will never be stuck for anything to do. We have also included our 2nd edition of Stylish Weddings for a guide on plannng your big day. The end of March sees the clocks go forward, meaning....... the start of British Summertime. (we hope)!!


Page 6 Chef in the Freezer Page 4 What is Mothering Sunday

■ Style & Fashion ■ Home & Garden ■ Entertainment ■ Competitions ■ Local Events ■ Travel ... and much more ...

▲ Page 8 St David’s Day

ADVERTISING: Jenna Hopkins ext 26 Hazel Walding - Advertising Manager For information on how to advertise in our next issue, contact: or telephone 01873 852187 ext 34 or ext 26

Page 33 Amateur chefs Vlog their ideas

GENERAL MANAGER - Mary Purcell When you have finished reading the Gazette & Diary Magazine - please recycle it. PUBLISHING: Printed and distributed by NWN Media. Mold Business Park, Wrexham Road, Mold, CH7 1XY.

Page 39 Get all fired up!

▲ Page 35 Astra Goes into Orbit

DESIGNERS: Dave Simkiss John Gaulton

Page 32 Brian May

Page 31 Anthony qucik cuisine

Page 36 & 37 Fun pages

The Abergavenny Chronicle

▲ Page 9 Crickhowell

Page 13 Wedding Guide 2012

In association with

At NWN Media we are committed to addressing the key environmental impacts of printing and the production process, and preserving the environment for future generations. Our environmental policy is achieved through continuous monitoring, annual targets and action plans.

▲ Page 38 What a Wonderful World

The sourcing of newsprint is a major environmental concern for publishers and we at NWN Media source our newsprint from UPM Kymmene in Deeside, utilising their 100% recycled paper, which is produced as a natural, renewable and recyclable fibre from sustainable, responsibly managed forests. UPM is committed to forest management and forest harvesting practices based on the internationally accepted principles of sustainable forest management. UPM Kymmene is just a mile from the press site, which also keeps carbon footprint to a minimum in the obtaining of our paper. All newsprint waste is taken back to UPMʼs site and fully recycled.

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Recipe Corner

Lamb, Mint and Halloumi Kebabs Ingredients: ● 450g/1lb lean boneless lamb leg or shoulder, cut into 2.5cm/1inch cubes ● 30ml/2tbsp freshly chopped mint or oregano ● Salt and freshly milled black pepper ● 15ml/1tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice ● 15ml/1tbsp olive oil ● 100g/4oz halloumi cheese, cut into small cubes Preparation time: 10-15 minutes plus marinating time Cooking time: 12-16 minutes Method: 1. Place all the kebab ingredients into a large, shallow dish, toss gently, cover and leave to marinate for up to 2 hours in the refrigerator. 2. Thread the lamb and cheese on to 8 short or 4 long wooden (previously soaked in water) or metal skewers. 3. Cook the kebabs on a prepared barbecue or preheated grill for 12-16 minutes, turning occasionally until any meat juices run clear. 4. Serve with houmous and a green salad.

What is Mothering Sunday? Mother’s Day is a special day in the honour of mothers. On Mother’s Day, children around the world play tribute to their mothers and thank them for all that they do for them. Mother’s Day is celebrated is around the world on different dates.

What happens on Mothering Sunday in the UK? Mothering Sunday is a time when children pay respect to their Mothers. Children often give their Mothers a gift and a card. Mothering Sunday church service Many churches give the children in the congregation a little bunch of spring flowers to give to their Mothers as a thank you for all their care and love throughout the year.

name was Mothering Sunday. No one is absolutely certain exactly how the name of Mothering Sunday began. However, one theory is that the celebration could have been adopted from a Roman Spring festival celebrating Cybele, their Mother Goddess. Mother Church - As Christianity spread, this date was adopted by Christians. The epistle in the Book of Common Prayer for this Sunday refers to the heavenly Jerusalem as "the Mother of all us all", and this may have prompted the customs we still see today. It is known on this date, about four hundred years ago, people made a point of visiting their nearest big church (the Mother Church). The church in which each person was baptised. Cathedrals are the ‘mother church’ of all other churches in an area ('diocese'). Canterbury Cathedral is pictured below.

When is Mothering Sunday (Mother’s Day)? Mothering Sunday (Mother’s Day) is always the fourth Sunday of Lent.

Why is Mothering Sunday on different dates each year? Mothering Sunday is not a fixed day because it is always the middle Sunday in Lent (which lasts from Ash Wednesday to the day before Easter Sunday). This means that Mother’s Day in the UK will fall on different dates each year and sometimes even fall in different months. Mothering Sunday has been celebrated in the UK on the fourth Sunday in Lent since at least the 16th century.

The History behind Mothering Sunday Mothering Sunday was also known as ‘Refreshment Sunday', Pudding Pie Sunday (in Surrey, England) or ‘Mid-Lent Sunday'. It was a day in Lent when the fasting rules were relaxed, in honour of the ‘Feeding of the Five Thousand', a story in the Christian Bible. Roman Spring Festival - The more usual


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People who visited their mother church would say they had gone "a mothering." Girls in Service - Young British girls and boys ‘in service’ (maids and servants) at the local Manor House or in a Mansion, were only allowed one day to visit their family each year. This was usually on Mothering Sunday. For some this could be a significant journey since their mother may have lived some distance away, indeed another town altogether from the Manor where they were put in to service. Often the housekeeper or cook would allow the maids to bake a cake to take home for their mother. Sometimes a gift of eggs; or flowers from the garden (or

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The Easy way to order food Sugar Loaf Catering and Food work shop both have a new easy to use online shop, with pictures of all our meals at There are three different delivery methods for you to choose from: ● UK courier delivery £12.00 ● Collection at our unit at castle meadows park abergavenny, ● Free local delivery. Weekly deliveries to Monmouth, Newport and the South Wales valleys are also available just contact us to find out when we deliver in your area.

2 ways to order, ● Online at, ● Over the phone by calling 07814401117 All dishes are hand made in our kitchens in Abergavenny, not in a factory. Local produce is used where possible to ensure the high quality of our meals. Only the best quality of our foods are used and are skilfully prepared by our chef Mark Coulton. A range of dishes from complete meals to main dishes and desserts. Our premium range offers dishes which are perfect for dinner parties including Peppered Beef with a red wine and thyme sauce. If you are worried you will forget to make an order, we offer a weekly phone order service where we call you up to see if there is anything you need from us for the following week. (see our main advert on opposite page).


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We now have a new easy to use online shop, with pictures of all our meals at ‘we do the cooking so you don’t have to’

2 ways to order Over the phone by calling: 07814401117 Online at:,

Tel: 01873 737755 / 07814401117 Email: ●

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St. Mary’s Bakery

St David’s Day When is St. David’s Day? St David’s Day is on 1 March. St David’s Day is celebrated in Wales on 1 March, in honour of St David (Dewi Sant), the patron saint of Wales. What does the flag of St David look like?

Outside Catering: Delicious Finger Buffets for Birthdays, Christenings, Weddings, Funerals, Children’s Parties or business lunches. Whatever the Occasion we can put together a tasty selection of Sandwiches, Savouries, Fruits and confectionary to your specification. No matter how large or small the order, buffets start at just £3.75 per head. For more information pop into the bakery or call -

Abergavenny: 01873 268183 St. Mary’s Bakery, 15 Frogmore St, Abergavenny

Abergavenny Market LOUIS Bannon has been pacing up and down Abergavenny’s Markey Hall for over 40 years and says he has no intention to change the habit of a lifetime. As a teenager, some 43 years ago, Louis first got the market bug whilst running a soft furnishings stall. But 15 years ago he decided to change tack and enter the antiques business instead and he earns enough from his stall in Abergavenny market and his shop in Cardiff to earn a modest living. Louis said that it all started when his collection of post cards featuring scenes of Abergavenny got to large and diverse that he started to sell he excess.

The stall has evolved even further over the years with gold coins becoming a favourite of the Abergavenny market shoppers and other former coins and bank notes of the realm. Louis said: “There is no one item that is currently hot, but while gold sells well for obvious financial reasons, everything else sells in enough quantity for me to make a modest living out of being a market trader. “Abergavenny market is one of the best selling points about the town. There are so few


The Spring Issue

There are many explanations of how the leek came to be adopted as the national emblem of Wales. One is that St David advised the Welsh, on the eve of battle with the Saxons, to wear leeks in their caps to distinguish friend from the enemy. Shakespeare mentions in Henry V, that the Welsh archers wore leeks at the battle of Agincourt in 1415.

What is Wales’ National Dress? On St David’s Day, some children in Wales dress in their national costume, which consists of a tall black hat, white frilled cap and long dress.

The national flag of Wales, depicting a fiery red dragon (Y Ddraig Goch) against a green and white background, is also flown.

traditional market towns left and it makes Abergavenny different from all the other clone towns.


Louis’ niece Karen Jones regularly helps out on the stall and she said that she has inherited the market trader bug.


Louis has had many unusual items on his stall over the years, but none more so than his latest acquisition – one of only 61 medals ever issued for serving in the battle of River Raisin in 1813. The issue was so rare because the soldiers had to be still alive 35 years later in 1848 in order to

Situated in the middle of the town known as the Gateway to Wales, Abergavenny Tuesday Market is well known as one of the major markets in Wales.

Louis with John Coakleyʼs medal for serving in the Battle of River Raisin in 1813.

Louis revealed that his fascination soon evolved into looking for anything that was to do with Abergavenny or was part of the Welsh heritage. He added: “I used to attend fairs all over the country looking for items of interest with a Welsh connection and bring them back home again. “It soon became obvious that militaria and medals were good sellers as were mining lamps, which always evoked a special emotion in me even though none of the family went down the mines.”

Who was St David? St David (Dewi Sant was a Celtic monk, abbot and bishop, who lived in the sixth century. He spread the word of Christianity across Wales. The most famous story about Saint David tells how he was preaching to a huge crowd and the ground is said to have risen up, so that he was standing on a hill and everyone had a better chance of hearing him.

The national emblems of Wales are daffodils and leeks. St David’s Day is commemorated by the wearing of daffodils or leeks. Both plants are traditionally regarded as national emblems.

MARKETS EVERY TUESDAY, WEDNESDAY, FRIDAY & SATURDAYS John Coakley, was registered as a ‘recruit from England’ andMilitary enlistedGeneral into theService 41st Foot Welsh receive their medal. Regiment on 6 May 1807. He saw extensive service in Canada and the north-west frontier of America during the War of 1812-15, including the attack on Fort Detroit which began on 16 August 1812. However, Coakley was wounded at the battle of the River Raisin on 22 January 1813. This action took place near present-day Monroe, in Michigan State, when a British contingent of some 500 regulars and Canadian militia, with a number of Indians, defeated an American force of approximately 1400 men. In later years the incident was immortalised by American forces as a battle cry “Remember the River Raisin!”

March / April

Craft Fair Saturday 10th March

Antique Fair

Sunday 18th March

Farmers Market Thursday 22nd March

Militeria Medals Fair Sunday 25th March

For further details contact Geoff Harris 01873 735811

Open Studios and Galleries in Crickhowell and Area After three very successful years the Art Trail of Open Studios and Galleries has established itself firmly on the Tourism calendar in Crickhowell and the surrounding area. Local artists and makers have again embraced the opportunity to promote their work during the Jubilee Bank Holiday Weekend this year. The support of the Brecon Beacons National Park Collabor8 Project made it possible to record many of the artists who participated during 2011. Photographer Michael Woodward has captured the essence of the trail with artists and makers at work, in reflective, creative and joyous mode. An initiative of the Crickhowell Resource and Information Centre (CRiC), the aim is to support the region’s artists and promote the exceptional quality of art and craftsmanship on offer in the heart of the Brecon Beacons, while raising the profile of the area as a tourist destination of inspirational natural beauty.

Art Trail Co-ordinator Suzette Pratten has worked with Brite Winterborn, Custodian, to exhibit a selection of these photographs at Tretower Court and Castle at Easter between 5 and 12 April 2012. Suzette said, ‘We are very grateful to Brite and Cadw for making this celebration of local artists possible. The exhibition will raise the profile of the artists and their work and “launch” the Art Trail for 2012. Showcasing the images in the beautiful surroundings of Tretower Court and Castle will add an extra dimension to the exhibition by simultaneously celebrating the cultural heritage on our doorstep.’ During April and May the photographs will be exhibited at various venues, including Brecon Library between 14 and 30 April. Full details of all venues will be available at before they return to CRiC at the beginning of June where visitors will be able to enjoy them during the Jubilee weekend when more than 75 regional and visiting artists will exhibit in 40 venues across a wide area. Guides publicising the event will be distributed and available at CRiC from the beginning of May onwards. Further information and images can be obtained from the Art Trail Co-ordinator, Suzette Pratten tel 01873 811970

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Stylish Weddings March/April 2012

by The Abergavenny Chronicle

edition 2


With Aberga the ve Chronic nny le

Cover image provided by Mansel Davies Photography Tel. 01633 548452 Mob. 07929 002197

Serving Our Customers for over 35 Years of Service in Herefordshire PERFECT FOR ALL YOUR WEDDING REQUIREMENTS DIAMOND ESSENTIALS Single Stone Diamond Solitaire Rings Over 500 to choose from in 9ct, 18ct and Platinum from £29 to £9,995 Plus an additional 4,000 gold rings to choose from This is probably more than all the other jewellers in Hereford put together, why bother with the rest?

SILVER AND GOLD EARRINGS IN 9CT AND 18CT Over 2,000 pairs to choose from including Gold Hoops from £6.95 and Diamond Studs from as little as £39.95

GOLD CHAINS & BRACELETS Over 500 to choose from Sold by weight Half the price of High Street Jewellers

WEDDING RINGS Over 700 different styles in stock

BODY PIERCING AND JEWELLERY Hereford Gold has the largest stock of gold and silver jewellery in Herefordshire at prices we guarantee cannot be beaten locally, with this promise - why bother with the rest?

42 Commercial Road (opposite the bus station) Hereford Telephone: 01432 359514 14

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OPENING HOURS: Monday - Tuesday - Wednesday Friday - Saturday 8.30am - 5.30pm Thursday 9am - 5.00pm

Planning your big day... So you’ve decided to commit to each other until death do you part and have announced the news to family and friends? All that’s left is making the whole thing legal and celebrating in style. marriage service may be difficult to arrange, so speak to the minister involved as soon as possible. Register Office - IT is possible to marry in any office in England and Wales, as long as you live in either country. You both need to be resident in your individual registration districts for seven days before giving notice. Then you must wait a further 16 days before the wedding can take place.

The Flowers... Check what flowers are in season - out of season blooms are usually more expensive. If you’re on a really tight budget consider using more foliage and fewer flowers. Consider the fragrance of your flowers as another element of your day. The colour style, length and fabric of your dress should influence your bouquet choice. A simple gown looks great with a cascading arrangement whereas a dress with a full skirt suits a more tightly structured arrangement.

To keep your flowers fresh have them delivered as late as possible. Be sure of the competence of any family or friend who offers to help with your flowers; arranging is harder than it looks.

In providing your own drinks check whether the reception venue charges corkage and if you have to hire glasses.

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Licensed Premises - YOUR local registry office will be able to give you a list of premises licensed for the solemnisation of marriage, which exist, in your area.

Select Your Style So how are you going to do it? Do you want a traditional white wedding in church or would you like a more laid back affair? Perhaps you’d like a ceremony in a hot air balloon, on a beach or in a zoo? While a civil ceremony in the United Kingdom opens up a huge choice of venues, you might want to consider tying the knot in an exotic location. This is a popular option, but requires some thought - while marrying on a beach or ski-slope can cost less than a big white wedding at home, it’s unlikely that all your family and friends would be able to attend. Your budget will help tame and frame your initial ideas, but the choice is ultimately yours. Church Wedding - IF you want a religious ceremony, your local place of worship is an obvious choice. In some circumstances it may be possible to marry in another church, but don’t bank on it, as many ministers will want evidence of a good reason for marrying in their parish if they’ve never seen you before. Banns (the publication of your intention to marry) are read out in church on three consecutive Sundays, and the wedding ceremony must take place within three months. If you are divorced or embarking on a marriage of mixed faiths, a full church

Marrying Abroad - THERE are a number of ways to marry in a different country. The most simple is with a tour operator that can offer a complete wedding package. The legal requirements vary from country to country, but tour operators will be able to provide you with a detailed checklist.

The Guest List... THIS area often causes problems! You need to arrive at a guest list, which stays within budget and keeps you and your partner happy as well as your families and friends. Your first consideration is how many people you can afford to invite and still have the kind of reception you want. Practical considerations come into the equation at this point, like the number of people the church, registry office or ceremony venue will hold. You’ll find that some registry offices only hold 25 people, so if your numbers are limited, divide your guests into those you want at the ceremony and those who you could happily just invite to the evening reception. Next decide how many guests each party is going to have allotted to them. Equal shares seem the most democratic option, but it may be that one of you has a much larger family or many more friends. Remain flexible and calm and co-operate where possible.

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The Rings...

Little Black Cat

The famous wedding ring is the oldest of all traditions, finding it’s roots in the Egyptian times when in the hieroglyphics, the circle represented eternity.

At Little Black Cat, we believe a celebration cake should be more than just a cake. Why not make it a talking point too?

Before metal the earliest of wedding rings were made from braided grass, hay, leather, bone and ivory and were worn traditionally on the third finger of the left hand, as it was believed that a vein which runs through that finger was directly connected to the heart.

We specialise in cakes that will thrill the guests at your wedding,– not just with beautiful designs but also with the lovely flavours we can offer. Traditional cakes, cupcakes, cakes decorated with fresh flowers and colours to match your wedding theme are all no problem – leave it to us to make your cake while you get on with organising the rest of the event! We can also make personalized cake toppers to keep as a memento of your day. We know that planning your big day can be stressful, and you can rely on us to take care of every aspect of the making, delivery and set-up of your cake. For a consultation, contact us on 01291 691234 or email We will also be exhibiting at local wedding fayres in the coming months so why not come and have a chat?

Wherever you decide to buy your wedding rings from, there are some handy hints that you can follow to ensure the perfect purchase. Always run your fingers over the rings before you buy them, inspecting for any rough or protruding edges. Make sure that when trying the wedding rings on, you do it when your hands are cold. This is because when your hands are hot, the fingers can expand which would result in a false fitting. You should choose the same type of metal and carat for both the engagement and wedding rings to avoid one wearing down as they rub together. There are variants in the colours of gold available; 9 carat gold has a gold content of 37.5% which means it is lighter in colour and weight; 18 carat gold has a gold content of 75%, is richer in colour and slightly heavier; 24 carat gold is essentially pure cold, almost orange in colour, quite heavy and very soft. Gold is available in a variety of colours, yellow, white, rose, green and even blue.

Capturing your day... Don’t be persuaded that Uncle John can film your video for you, you could be very disappointed, and later wish that you had selected a qualified and well established Videographer, who uses expensive equipment to obtain the sound and picture quality that you have grown accustomed to when you watch television. Be clear about the pricing structure, promotional videos may be impressive to watch, but you may find that you will be charged extra for these ‘special effects and highlight sequences’. Some Videographers will include these in the price quoted. Wedding videos Time and time again, Brides and Grooms have said, “Oh I wish


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To make sure the colour is what you desire, it is better to check it in natural daylight - this is the only way to be sure. You should avoid opting for fashionable rings as it could look dated rather quickly - and always ask the jeweller’s advice about cleaning your new ring.

I’d had our wedding filmed, I can hardly remember all that happened on the day". Videos and DVDs make ideal gifts to friends and family, and capture the memories of that very special day in your life, which can be viewed for generations to come. With the photographers, it is best to ask around and find out who people recommend locally. Then decide upon the style you want. You can have a formal look or some candid snapshots. Some people even opt to have a disposable camera on each guests table and then get them to hand them in for development at the end of the day.

Finally, add your new ring to your household insurance. They need to be itemised separately on the policy and covered wherever you are. If you follow all of these steps you can find the perfect ring for your perfect day.

It is best to visit some photographers and look through their previous wedding sets. As soon as you find someone you feel comfortable with, spend some time with them, and provide them with all the help you can from the timetable of events to the guests names. If your budget is tight you could ask a skillful friend to lend a hand, but discuss it first to avoid disappointment.

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Wedding Fayre SUNDAY 11th MARCH 2012 11.00am - 4.00pm 'Our exhibitors will be offering ever y thing you need to make your day both magical and memorable’

FREE ADMISSION Refreshments Available Free Goody Bag for the first 25 Brides Sunday 18th March 2012 - Bookings advisable

Mothering Sunday Lunch Three Course Special Menu £16.95 per person Under 12yrs Half Price, Highchair Occupants Free

Friday 24th August

Rod Stewart Tribute night Greatest Love Songs. £20 per ticket, 2 course dinner & entertainment

Telephone: 01873 890 271 Email: ●

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The Reception Venue... If you’re getting married in a venue licensed for weddings, then the ceremony and reception could be held at the same location - problem solved.

The initiative shop IYour wedding day is one of the best days of your life and you want the day to reflect the time and effort that you have put into organising and planning this special event. Here at the initiative shop we have a complete range of Wedding Stationery to choose from and we know we will be able to help you find a design to match your wedding theme. We have ranges to suit all tastes and budgets and can provide you with free samples.

However, if you’re tying the knot in a church or registry office, ideally you’ll need to find somewhere reasonably close by. If you’re looking to save money, consider a place where you can bring in your own caterers and drink.

your choice. If you select from our charity section, the charity logo will be printed on your wedding stationery. To add the finishing touches to your wedding day we also have a wide selection of accessories. From table decorations to unique gifts for your special guests we have a wide selection to suit every brides need.

Thorough research is the key to success, so ask around for personal recommendations, look in books and magazines, scour wedding websites to get ideas for your own individual taste.

We look forward to welcoming you to the initiative store situated at 22 Frogmore Street, Abergavenny, and to showing you our Wedding Stationery collection.

Ring around for quotations, compare rates and visit a number of the places that appeal. Finally, don’t forget to book early.

We also have a range of civil partnership wedding invitations specifically designed for modern civil partnership ceremonies. However, many of our other designs are suitable for civil partnership weddings as the wordings can be fully customised. These designs can be supplied with matching wedding stationery such as orders of the day and place cards.

Once you have decided on the type of wedding you would like, one very important factor is what type of reception to have. Some choose the hotel function room, others choose a marquee, some decide to rent the local village hall. Whichever you decide, take into account your budget, the number of guests, location (not too far from the ceremony), informal or formal, sit down or buffet.

We have also teamed up with Marie Curie Cancer Care and Macmillan to give you the opportunity of donating to these charities when purchasing your wedding stationery. If you select stationery from this category, a 25% donation will be made to the charity of

Book well in advance to avoid disappointment. Most receptions begin with an aperitif either champagne, sherry, or fruit for the non-drinkers A formal wedding has a ‘line up’, usually the bride’s parents, the bridegroom’s parents, the bride and groom, bridesmaids, ushers and the best man to greet their guests. A traditional table plan for your reception would normally be as follows: ★ Chief Bridesmaid ★ Groom’s Father ★ Bride’s Mother ★ Groom

★ Bride ★ Bride’s Father ★ Groom’s Mother ★ Best Man Table decorations can consist of flowers, balloons, streamers, ribbons, candles etc. Try and colour co-ordinate your tables for added flair. One very nice idea is to have disposable cameras for your guests, so they can capture that special moment.

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Wedding Meander Chair Cover & Tie Back Sets £1.50 (incl set up) Wedding Tables - £20.00 each includes table linen, table runner, charger plates, linen napkins & table centrepeice 01989 564025 18

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find us on

The Barn

at Glangrwyney Court Set in the breathtaking Brecon Beacons with the rolling Black Mountains beyond you will find this impressive 18th Century Barn converted into the most stunning of Venues. The Barn forms part of Glangrwyney Court, a privately owned Grade 11 listed Country House within 4 acres of walled gardens surrounded by 33 acres of parkland. The Barn is a beautiful period property refurbished to the highest standard whilst maintaining its historic beams and rustic charm with the log fire and oak floor this attractive venue creates a unique and memorable setting for your wedding day. The Barn provides a very versatile venue with a Civil Wedding Licence for a maximum of 100 Guests. A Formal Wedding Reception within the Barn can cater for up to 80 people and if you are planning a

Venue Hire from £800

larger event a marquee within the beautifully maintained grounds can cater for up to 200 people. The Barn provides the most ideal setting for a Wedding Ceremony or Reception and is only ever taken on an “exclusive use” basis so you can be sure that your special day will be private to you and your guests. By simply offering the venue you are free to choose your suppliers such as caterers and entertainment etc allowing you to tailor your Wedding Day to your specific requirements. We do not charge corkage if you would like to supply your own alcohol throughout the day. We are extremely flexible and would love to assist you in creating your unique day. We welcome the opportunity to show you around and discuss your requirements.

For further information or to arrange a viewing call us on 01873 811288 to make an appointment.

Glangrwyney Court Glangrwyney, Crickhowell, Powys, NP8 1ES

Tel: 01873 811288 Email: Website: ●

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The Dress...

The evening reception is a great way of finalising your wedding day.

This is one aspect of the wedding planning that should be sheer pleasure. If you have no idea what you want, look at every picture you can find in wedding magazines, newspapers and on the internet.

All the guests by now have had a great day, lots to eat, a bit to drink and everyone is in good spirits, so to continue the day there’s nothing better than a good old knees up. The subject of ‘the first dance’ for the happy couple at the evening party often sparks off conversations between friends and family. The song chosen is normally one of importance to the bride and groom, maybe it was a song in the charts the month you met, or maybe just one you both like. If you can’t think of songs maybe the following would help: ★ Endless Love - Lionel Richie ★ Sweet Baby - Macy Grey ★ Your Love is King - Sade ★ My Heart Will Go On - Celine Dion

Then decide on your budget and whether you are going to buy a dress (new or second hand), hire one or have one made for you. If you decide to buy, shop well in advance of your wedding day and you may be able to pick up an end of season bargain.

hates like coloured embroidery. Perhaps you’d like a detachable train or a crease resistant fabric? When you try on dresses consider your lingerie and shoes. Wear them to your fittings, as dramatic lingerie like a basque will change your body shape considerably. Take your wedding shoes to get the dress length right. Enjoy yourself and take an honest friend with you.

Try on a number of different styles to find out which shapes and colours suit you. Pass on information to the bridal wear experts like the formality of the venue, the time of year that you’re getting married and pet

Make sure the DJ or band you book are aware of your chosen song, don’t presume they will have it. Tell them it is to be the first dance and then some idea of what type of music you would like for the rest of the evening. A cross section of music is advised so granny, aunty and your 4 year old nephew can all enjoy themselves. And above all have a good time.

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The Old Court Hotel We are located just off the A40 dual carriageway between Monmouth & Ross on Wye. A rural setting with a large car park it is ideally placed out of town for easy access and beautiful memories and pictures. Jono & Tori have run the hotel for 6 years. During that time the reputation for wedding and functions has grown. With Jono cooking all the food and Tori doing the preparation weddings run seamlessly with a wonderful quality food offer. Tori regularly persuades couples to design their own menus to make the day even more special. Last year we did a Carribean themed menu for one couple and a Danish themed main course for another. As with the food, Tori believes the secret to a good wedding is flexibility. She says "weddings are special whether they have 4 guests or 400". We understand all couples are looking for a fabulous day. We provide that here and can give brilliant testimonials. A recent thank you card


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wrote " thank you for doing such a fantastic job on our wedding day, the room was decorated so beautifully, everyone commented on how fantastic it looked, the food was out of this world....your staff were so attentive.....we felt so relaxed..." For more information just give us a call to book a meeting or drop in to look around.

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Who does what?... It’s your big day and you don’t want to arrive at the altar with bags under your eyes big enough to accommodate a fortnight’s honeymoon. This is not the time to be a control freak, so delegate! Appoint a small group of willing helpers and divide the main tasks among them. Here are some suggestions. The BRIDE’S FATHER - escorts you down the aisle, giving you away during the ceremony and makes a speech at the reception. The BRIDE’S MOTHER and GROOM’S PARENTS - have no official duties, but usually appreciate being called on to help. If the families don’t know each other well this is a good chance to help them become friends. The BRIDE - Choosing your outfit and what the bridesmaids wear falls on you. Come up with some brilliant ideas, discuss them with your groom, pick the jobs that you’ll enjoy the most and let the trusted few take care of the rest. The GROOM - involve him in everything. According to tradition, he organises the

legal side of the marriage, pays the fees, arranges the licence and checks all the paperwork. The choice of best man also falls on him, as does buying the rings and the presents for the attendants as well as arranging the honeymoon. Let him tackle anything else he thinks he’ll enjoy. The BEST MAN - has a host of duties including organising the stag party, driving the groom to the ceremony venue, taking care of the wedding rings, accompanying the chief bridesmaid and giving a speech during the reception. The CHIEF BRIDESMAID - organises the hen party, helps you dress on the day, is in charge of any younger attendants and holds the bouquet during the ceremony. The USHERS - you’ll need as many of these as your venue demands.

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Website: Telephone: 01874 938005 Email: 22

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March / April

Setting the tone... A stylish invitation card can set the tone perfectly for your dream wedding, but as there are many different types of invitations and stationery available, choosing can become quite an arduous task.

copy before the rest are printed. You should check: the spelling, date, names and addresses and punctuation. Some of the stationery you may consider are: Invitations and envelopes, RSVP cards, save the date cards, service sheets, napkins, cake boxes, menu cards, place cards and thank you cards.

More and more department stores and stationery shops now offer a service where your cards can be specially designed.

Catering... Catering will account for a big slice of your budget so careful planning is essential. Firstly, you’ll need to decide whether you want a formal sit down meal or a buffet. A sit down meal requires you to work out a seating plan, but guests often find their own places with a buffet. Itemise any special requirements that you or your guests may have, such as vegetarian, vegan or kosher diets, then take your specifications to a number of suppliers and compare menus and quotes. You may be offered the opportunity to taste a selection of dishes, which will give you an idea of the quality available. If you’ve opted for a buffet, don’t forget to err on the side of generosity to make sure there’s plenty for everyone. Don’t forget that an experienced caterer can also give you ideas with your reception budget and help you with the seating plan so the ‘traffic’

moves smoothly in the venue you have chosen. You should start interviewing caterers 7-12 months in advance of your wedding. Your wedding will not be complete without the cake! The number of guests will help determine the size of cake required, although you may have already made up your mind exactly what you want. You may want a traditional tiered cake with flowers to match your bouquet or you may have a particular passion for something that can be created, whatever, a good cake designer can be very artistic and should listen to your individual requirements.

Patricia’s Bridal Wear

After relocating back to Wales, she set up her business working from home, a former malthouse. Patricia works on an array of designs suitable for weddings and special occasions. For the first few years she got her work by means of referrals from friends and friends of friends who had spread the word about her dressmaking business. Patricia shows off two of her ongoing creations.

She said: “I undertake a personal service by making everything from scratch to create bespoke wedding gowns to suit any budget. “I’d been doing this originally as a part-time hobby come business whist working as a nurse and the manager of a pub.”

who wasn’t a friend of a friend contact me and her reaction to the finished garment was so positive that it was both a great relief and rewarding at the same time.”

But her life was about to change when she confided with a friend.

And before she knew it her hand made garments were being admire far and wide with Patricia adding: “It had got so busy that I never got the chance to take many pictures of my creations. It was go go go.”

“It wasn’t long before I had my first customer

Continued on the next page

In providing your own drinks check whether the reception venue charges corkage and if you have to hire glasses.

HAVING made special occasion dresses for as long as she can remember, Patricia Smith decided to give up her job as manager of a pub in Derbyshire to concentrate on dressmaking as a less stressful way of earning a living.

“Whilst I had done the accounts and administration for the pub I realised I needed to gain more relevant business experience and so I enrolled onto a training course and soon I was out in the big wide world standing on my own two feet.

It is very important that if you are having the invitations printed by a company you see a proof

Ask to see photographs of the cakes they have designed, so you can check out the quality, their creativity and get ideas. Do remember that the cake should have a table of its own so that people and the photographer can get a good view of you cutting the cake.

Talgarth Weddings

Patricia said: “My friend suggested to me that I should do what I am good at – dressmaking. “So I decided there and then to hand back the keys and go it alone in my new chosen career to make wedding gowns, bridesmaid dresses to mother of the bride and groom outfits, prom dresses and other formal occasions.

A good quality cream or white card is the usual trend for a formal wedding and if you have a computer and a flair for design you could create your own.

Now is the time to have that special Dress designed & handmade by Patricia in Talgarth Free Consultations By Appointment Only

To help out with some of the time consuming intricate work Patricia called on her friend Sarah McCrum to help out by sewing on many of the beads onto the dresses. But now Patricia has outgrown her malthouse workshop, which doubles up as her home, and is getting excited about moving into purpose built shop premises in Bell Street in Talgarth. She is currently creating her latest collection of dresses, which are all similar in style but with subtle changes that will be displayed in her new shop in April

T: 01874 712035 M: 07980 436874 E: ●

The Spring Issue

March / April



Making the day go well...

Wedding insurance is a relatively new and good idea, as one never knows what is around the corner.

Nearly all weddings have an evening party / reception but these days many couples are including fireworks for added effect.

Fireworks, balloons and great music all add up to an excellent day for everyone, and as a small gesture why not ring your local radio station and ask for a dedication for your beloved or loved ones.

You may have to postpone or cancel due to family upset, illness or accident and taking out a policy to cover this could save you money in the event of this happening. Ask your local independent finance advisor for information. Check first with your wedding suppliers if they are covered for cancellations, etc. Some couples will want to save up for their special day, get advice on the best savings accounts to earn you the most interest. If you require a loan to pay for your wedding, remember there are many options available, so shop around to get the best deal. Plan well in advance, set a budget and stick to it.


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Everything’s fixed - but are you really happy with it all? Your wedding’s booked and everything is in place, now is the time to think of you. Are you happy with your weight? Would that gorgeous dress look better with slight weight loss? Crash diets simply do not work! Eating healthily, exercise and relaxation will help you look and feel better. Pamper yourself with facemasks, foot scrubs, essential oils, etc. Have you ever thought of a


The Spring Issue

March / April

fake tan, many beauty salons offer various tanning techniques? While you’re there why not treat yourself to a pedicure or facial. With your hands on show, those unsightly chipped or broken nails need to be at their best, so a manicure, nail tips or nail art are an option. Plan your makeup bearing in mind neutral colours work best. If you are not confident with your own makeup techniques, speak to a professional beautician.

Continued on the next page

Transport... It is a good idea to bear in mind the distance to the venue from your home when deciding which form of transport to use.

the same venue you may not need cars at all one area where savings can be made. Remember it is the best man’s responsibility for getting himself and the groom to the ceremony on time and is probably, together with looking after the rings, his most important duty.

THERE’S nothing quite like stepping out of a gleaming Rolls Royce or Bentley to create an impression on your arrival at church, but a vintage car or horse carriage will also create a stir.

They should arrive approximately half an hour before the bride and bridesmaids. They would normally arrive in the best man’s car, the groom’s own car or by taxi. Unless you are having a Civil Ceremony and are marrying in the same place as your reception, you will need your transport to take you both to the reception and a second vehicle for your bridesmaids.

It’s usual to have two cars one for you and your father and one for your mum and bridesmaids but one may be enough for a smaller wedding. Book early especially if you are getting hitched in the summer months. If you are having your wedding and reception at

It is not uncommon for the bride’s mother / parents to accompany the bridesmaids.

Continued on the next page

Susan’s Dress Shop SUSAN’S dress shop is an independent trader that offers a personal service that is said to be hard to find in major towns and cities. Whilst the shop is based in Tredegar, it doesn’t stop women, who are mothers of a bride or groom, travelling miles to obtain what they are looking for in a special occasion outfit.

Susan’s specialises in complete outfits, which are accessorised with hats, shoes jewellery and bags. Everything is available in the store that centres around the mother of the bride and groom trade along with special occasion outfits in all sizes between 10 and 24.

Alison Powles took over the established business five years ago and said that the styles women are requesting these days have changed a lot in a short space of time. She said: “Gone are the full length dresses and it seems a return to the shorter length, classical look dress is back in vogue.

Buying from a small independent retailer also eliminates the chance that someone else at the wedding may be wearing the same outfit which has been mass produced by a large clothing chain. A large percentage of Susan’s customers have been recommended by a friends or relations because of a courteous and personal service.

“I’ve been told that the shop’s range goes far beyond what is available in cities. My customers have told me that they have traipsed around department stores and multi national chain stores in large towns and city centre and they get

Alison added: “Women can take as long as they like deliberating over their choices. We don’t try to hurry our customers and they can take as long as they like in deciding what they want to wear for that special occasion.”Stationery collection.

The latest look from the 2012 collection

We have a wonderful selection of Jewellery Including the beautiful handmade designs from Marion Meek

An amazing range of Handbags, Shoes & Scarves Wedding accessories & Tiaras Created to your designs and colour schemes

Gifts & much more We are just off the high street up Lewis’s Lane (opposite Café Nero)

Please come along, we hope to see you soon

2012 collection

Ladies Accessories Shop in Abergavenny

disillusioned when they have not been able to find what they want until they step through my door.”

The perfect outfit for this seasons wedding Specialising in Mother of the Bride. Groom and Guests. Matching hats, shoes & bags. Also available wide selection of smart and casual wear in sizes 10-24

Susan’s 26a Castle Street Tredegar Gwent NP22 3DG 01495 724390 ●

The Spring Issue

March / April



White Crafts wedding tips Honeymoon... There are a number of aspects to take in to consideration when ordering your wedding invitations, here are a few helpful tips to help you on your way to STRESS FREE wedding stationery delights!

You have to think not only about the Bride and Groom’s names here. For example, do you want to include middle names or even surnames? Whose name is first? I could go on… but you’d probably stop reading. You also need to consider how you’re going to display your guests’ names. Some choose not to include names on their invitations. In my experience I personally would always recommend stating exactly who is invited and more importantly who isn’t!! You don’t want to be in a situation on the day where you assumed Auntie Sue & Uncle Pete are coming to the wedding but their 24 year old son with his new girl aren’t, only for them all to turn up on the day with nowhere to sit, and nothing to eat. Awkward! Better to make it clear from the very beginning whom is and isn’t invited.

Number of Invitations


Before you even begin to look at designs, colours, lay out of invitations make sure you know how many you need! Remember 100 guests will mean approximately 50 invitations, as many will be couples or families who only require 1 invite. This is only a rough guide and it’s well worth the time sitting down and going through the list properly with your partner to get a precise number.

It’s always a good idea to include an RSVP to ensure you get your responses in the time frame you want, including all the information you need. Always check with your venue when they need your final confirmed numbers, and how many vegetarians, vegans, gluten free, allergies etc. meals you require. This way you can make sure you ask your guests for their responses in a reasonable time, plus a little extra for you chase any one slacking.

Style of Wedding Is your wedding a formal affair, sticking to all the traditions? Are you taking a modern twist on some of the old favourites? Are you heading for an informal relaxed celebration? Whatever you decide, your invitations/save the dates are the very first encounter your guests have with your wedding. They set the scene for what your guests can expect on the day itself, and have the power of determine dress choices (especially colour) and whether or not your guests will make the effort to attend.

Who’s inviting Who? Sit down and talk openly about whom will be hosting (inviting people) to the wedding. Traditionally the Brides parents invite guests to the marriage of their daughter, but with more and more Brides and Grooms paying for their own weddings or multiple parties contributing then who’s name goes on the invitation can become a taboo subject, if not approached head on! There are many different wording options that can include everyone, so if you find yourself lost just ask your wedding stationer for help.

Gifts I have this question A LOT, ‘we’ve lived together for years, and we have everything we need, so is it cheeky to just ask for money?’ This is completely personal to you. In my experience, approximately 1 in 50 weddings have a traditional gift list, all the others ask for money contributions towards home improvements, or the honeymoon. There are polite ways of doing this, but remember your guests will bring you something. They’ll want to give you something. If you don’t tell them what you want, you face the awkwardness of having three kettles, towels that don’t match your bathroom, and a toaster you don’t need. Whether you choose money, a gift list, charitable donations in lieu of gifts, or strictly no gifts at all, you have to give your guests this information.

Your day! Above all, remember it’s YOUR WEDDING. There are no rights or wrongs, I can tell you the traditions but in the end it is up to you and your partner what you want to include and don’t want to include. Happy Planning!



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A year in advance ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏ ❏

Decide on preferred place, date and time. Set a budget and decide who’s doing what. Draw up guest list Look for a wedding dress or outfit. Order wedding stationery. Make bookings with reception venue. Book photographer. Book florist. Order wedding cake. Book transport for wedding day and going away car. Book musicians and/or disco. Organise insurance. Check both passports are still valid. Plan and book honeymoon. Contact registrar or vicar and note dates for reading of banns or giving notice.

Three months to go: ❏ Post invitations ❏ Buy wedding shoes and underwear, before your first dress fitting. ❏ Have first dress fitting. ❏ Arrange order of service, pick hymns and write vows. ❏ Choose your rings. ❏ Have any vaccinations needed for honeymoon.

A month before: ❏ Check fit of outfits. ❏ Prepare a newspaper announcement. ❏ Confirm date of wedding rehearsal.

❏ Draw up seating plan, allowing flexibility for cancellations or last minute additions. ❏ Chose presents for attendants and both mothers. ❏ Check that any guests who have failed to reply have received their invitations. ❏ Order travellers’ cheques or foreign currency for the honeymoon.

A week to go: ❏ Confirm essential arrangements for the florist, photographer, videographer, cars, reception and cake. ❏ Hold hen party and stag night. ❏ Confirm final number of guests with caterer. ❏ Check seating plan and amend according to any late acceptance or withdrawals. ❏ Time the journey to the ceremony location so you know when you need to leave home. ❏ Put fees for minister, organist in marked envelopes and give them to best man. ❏ Arrange for someone to look after bride’s dress and accessorise after the wedding. ❏ Check travel tickets for honeymoon.

The day before: ❏ Prepare your outfit. ❏ Pack honeymoon clothes and arrange for them to be taken to reception venue. ❏ If you are using your own car to get to the airport or your honeymoon destination, then check that it’s in good working order. AND DON’T FORGET: Double check everything!

honeymoon for possibly the next day. ★ Decide on what your ideal honeymoon would be, is it worth paying the extra for a four poster bed or would you prefer interesting excursions?

Honeymoon... There are many Honeymoon packages available whether you prefer an English castle, a Caribbean island or a trek through the Amazon, your travel agent will have many deals available.

Independent travel agents have good access to all of the major tour operators as well as some smaller specialised operators.

Ask your tour operator if your room has a romantic view,

★ Last minute bargains are great but do you really need the hassle of searching, you could also end up being very disappointed. ★ Your wedding day can be very tiring, plan your

overlooking a lake, the sea etc., it can make your honeymoon one to remember. ★ Ask your tour operator if your room has a romantic view, overlooking a lake, the sea etc., it can make your honeymoon one to remember. ★ Make sure when booking, your travel agent informs the hotel that you are newlyweds, you never know what extras you might get, most hotels will offer complimentary flowers, champagne or even a free candlelit dinner.

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The Spring Issue

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The Spring Issue

March / April



The Spring Issue

March / April

Antony’s quick cuisine Easy? We put two recipes the test... Like many celebrity chefs before him, Antony Worrall Thompson is on a mission to show the nation how easy it is to cook. In his latest cookery book, Antony Makes It Easy, the 58-year-old wants to prove that producing home-cooked food is just as simple as heating up a pre-packaged meal. The father-of-four, who regularly shows off his culinary skills on TV programmes including This Morning, explains: “The recipes here are what I would call real food, food that for the most part doesn’t come out of any packets in ready-assembled, part-cooked ingredients. It’s food you can cook easily from scratch.” To see if Worrall Thompson’s book lives up to the promise, we put one of its recipes to the test. Deciding on which one to pick is tough. With 120 dishes on offer, all of which look thoroughly appetising, it’s hard to pick. After finally plumping for Roast Butternut Squash and Twice baked Potatoes, it’s time to see just how easy the recipes are. There are two sets of ingredients for each recipe. While both are necessary for the dishes, Worrall Thompson has divided the ingredients into those which he thinks you’ll already have and those which will require a quick trip to the shops. So, for example, for the Warm Chocolate Nonsense, Worrall Thompson presumes you’ll have 250g of dark chocolate in the cupboard but that you’ll need to buy whipping cream. This way of separating ingredients, while novel, is slightly unnecessary as everyone’s cupboards will be stocked with different products. So having visited the local supermarket to buy most of the ingredients, it’s time to get going. The butternut squash needs to be cooked for 50 minutes and the ricotta mixture for the dish doesn’t take long to make. While it sounds simple enough, there’s a problem: The recipe requires a food processor and without one there’s a need to improvise. Luckily a blender is just as effective. Once the cheese mixture is added to the butternut squash and put back in the oven for 15 minutes, the finished dish comes out looking not all that different from the picture of Worrall Thompson’s version.

Roast butternut squash with savoury ricotta Ingredients: ● 6 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil, salt and ground black pepper, four garlic cloves peeled and roughly chopped, 1/4 tsp chilli flakes, pinch of grated nutmeg ● 2 small butternut squash, halved and seeded, 2 tbsp rosemary leaves, 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley leaves only, 175g/6oz ricotta, 225g/8oz cow’s mozzarella diced, 85g/3oz Gorgonzola, green salad for serving Method: 1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6. 2. Arrange the butternut squash, cutside up, on a roasting tray. Drizzle with 2 tbsp olive oil, sprinkle with 1/2 tbsp rosemary and season. Place in the oven and cook for 50 minutes until roasted and caramelised. 3. Meanwhile, in a mini food processor, blend the remaining rosemary, parsley, garlic, chilli flakes and nutmeg to a paste then, with the machine running slowly,

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Come and enjoy the hotels superb seafront position overlooking Tenby’s beautiful south beach in a friendly and comfortable atmosphere. add the remaining olive oil. Pour into a bowl and mash together with the ricotta, mozzarella and Gorgonzola, then check the seasoning. 4. When the butternut squash is cooked, remove from the oven and fill the cavities with the cheese mash. Return it to the oven and cook for 15 minutes. Serve with a green salad. More ideas: If Gorgonzola is not to your liking, replace it with 25g/1oz grated Parmesan.

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St. David’s On the Record: Day Brian May - Rockin’on and on and on Brian May, 64, made his name as the lead guitarist with rock band Queen. He continues to be involved with We Will Rock You, the musical inspired by and containing the band’s songs. He is married to actress Anita Dobson, is a campaigner for animal rights, a professor of astrophysics, and owns the London Stereoscopic Company, which is bringing 3D images from the Victorian age back to life.

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looked as if it was all going to be over by the end of the week. But 10 years later, and millions and millions of satisfied, smiling customers later, we’re still there, and we have a touring production as well, as well as a couple of productions going elsewhere in the world, so it’s a phenomenon.

own success.

SO IF PEOPLE WHO SAW THE ORIGINAL PRODUCTION WATCHED IT NOW, WOULD THEY NOTICE THE CHANGES? Yes, we’ve changed it quite a lot. We’ve tried lots of different things, we’ve experimented quite a lot. Every time somebody comes in and we slot them into a role, we look at them and see what their special talents are and how we can best use them, maybe even alter a role. I GET THE IMPRESSION THAT HAD FREDDIE MERCURY BEEN AROUND, HE’D HAVE LOVED EVERY MINUTE OF BEING INVOLVED IN IT Yes, he’d have been like me, been in and out of it the whole time, and enjoying the whole process. IS IT TRUE THERE MAY BE A SEQUEL? Ben (Elton) has written a sequel, which I think is magnificent. I guess what we don’t have is the time and the right moment to put it on yet, because We Will Rock You takes up a lot of our time, we’re a victim of our

YOU’VE BEEN IN THE NEWS LATELY THANKS TO YOUR ANIMAL WELFARE WORK Yes. I spend a huge proportion of my time now on animal welfare, it’s something I always promised myself I’d do. In fact, I’m doing some filming on hedgehogs, although most of our work is to do with foxes and badgers, trying to change the way people perceive and treat animals. It’s a major, major job.

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Amateur chefs vlog their ideas of free videos created by the users themselves. “The content is going to be all user-generated,” he explains enthusiastically. “We could add more videos from professional chefs to make it grow more quickly, but that’s not the point.” Launched last November is steadily growing. And while its progress isn’t quite as fast as Simon had hoped, he knows that that word-of-web is very powerful. “I’m looking forward to the point when someone uploads a raspberry cupcake recipe and people say what a fantastic recipe and then the next thing they upload, that gets used as well.

“Anyone can make a cup of tea and dunk a biscuit in,” he laughs. “But it got them used to being on the site.” The chef is also spreading the word via Twitter (he has 8,500 followers) and a Facebook group. When he’s not filming vlogs for the website, coming up with recipes for Something For TheWeekend - “I write four a week, and we’re on week 165!” - or running his restaurants, Simon says he somehow finds time to see his family. “I have two restaurants, two kids and one wife,” he says frankly. “And I try and give a little bit of everything to all of them, but I’d hate to be married to me.”

Amateur chefs with a passion for food and showmanship are getting busy in the kitchen in front of wobbly tripods demonstrate their culinary skills to the world. Simon Rimmer, chef on BBC Two’s Something For The Weekend and owner of two restaurants, believes everyone’s going to be at it soon. The innovative young chef has become involved with a new website called It’s a community site where anyone can upload their vlogs and Simon hopes to create a database

Already food vlogs like, and are attracting thousands of loyal followers. And now that digital recording equipment is comparatively cheap and editing tools are widely available online, does Simon think that soon everyone will start sharing their food secrets with the world? “It’s quite a big commmitment to cook a dish, video it, upload it and send it off,” he admits. “This is why I suggested that we start with something easy.”

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The Spring Issue

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Gazette Motors

Astra Goes into Orbit

top of the range 1.6 litre turbo which has a standstill to 60mph time of 7.8secs. My choice here would have to be the 1.6 turbo as the 137hp 1.4 did not have enough low down punch. Stop-start to help economy is available on both 1.4 engines.

For the press launch of the Astra GTC, Vauxhall’s PR team had the novel idea of letting us push the new coupe to the limit on the famous Shelsley Walsh hill climb near Worcester. It was against the clock and the winner got a cup and a commemorative painting of the 106 yearold 1,000 yard course.

Things are looking better on the diesel front with 108bhp and 127bhp 1.7 litre engines and a swift, though uncommonly noisy, 2-litre with a useful 162bhp. These will be the models that will interest the fleet as both 1.7 engines have tax friendly 119g/km emission levels and the ability to top 60mpg.

What it told us was that the GTC has spectacularly good handling that is up there with the very best, but then we would not have expected anything different. Vauxhall has a rich heritage in sporty coupes and with the massive leaps in chassis and suspension technology this latest car was out to impress. It is built on the same platform as its Astra cousins and shares the same DNA but get under its skin and the GTC is a completely different animal from its extended hatch and sport tourer family. All the body panels are GTC bespoke and the same goes for the front suspension which has been heavily revised to meet the demands of more aggressive driving. The end result is a car that feels far more taut than the basic hatchback, has stick to the road like glue qualities (as I found on my dash up the hill) but does not have bone crunching suspension, in fact the GTC was pretty comfortable, particularly the petrols whose suspension seems easier to tune than the heavier diesel engine models. From the outside the GTC has the trendy blade curving crease line which extends around the door handle to the tail (the designers are chuffed with the effect) a slimmer main grille but a larger lower grille. For now there will be a choice of 1.4 and 1.6 litre petrols pushing out 118bhp or 137bhp for the smaller engine and 176bhp for the

Astra Coupe has traditionally been the best seller in its sector and the expectation is that it will take a sizeable 20 per cent of Astra sales which will be shared 50-50 between fleet and private buyers. Inside, Astra Coupe is a capable five-seater with reasonable rear seat headroom despite its sloping roof, and the boot is also a good size with minimal intrusion from the wheel arches. This time round the GTC faces its toughest ever competition against the glorious VW Scirocco and incredibly nimble Renault Megane Coupe, although Vauxhall is breathing

a huge sigh of relief that Ford has no plans for a three-door Focus.


Prices range from £18,495 for the 1.4 litre Sport to £22,430 for a 2-litre diesel SRi. So how did I do on the hill climb? Well out of my group of 15 journos I could do no better than fourth in 41.86secs. Should I have kept my right foot pressed to the floor for the first left hand curve, and not gone for broke on the tight final right hander? Who knows? We were told sub 42 seconds up the hill in the GTC was good and we first four managed it with less than half a second between me and the winner. Like I said, every second counts so now I know how Lewis Hamilton feels when he has been beaten to pole by Sebastian Vettel.

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The Spring Issue

March / April


Colour me in

March 2012

Gazette Magazine Poll LAST MONTHS RESULTS We asked you are you enjoying EastEnders Ben ‘out of control’ storyline

Gazette Giggles!

Pick up your copy of the Abergavenny Chronicle every Thursday Arthritis Annual Concert at Llangattock Community Hall. Doors open 7pm. Entrance £5. Tel: 07812 538067. Minibus from Abergavenny

My mother taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE "If you're going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning!"

Govilon Car Boot. Main Road , every Thursday, mornings, weather permitting. 01873 830834.

Pick up your copy of the Abergavenny Chronicle every Thursday

My mother taught me about WEATHER -"It looks as if a tornado swept through your room."

“I am loving the new scary Ben, it beats that wimpy kid and I love that he is giving Phil a run for his money” says Mrs Williams

Crickhowell Craft Fair, Clarence Hall, 10-3.30pm. Craft Stalls and Refreshments. Further Details 01873 811618.

Pick up your copy of the Abergavenny Chronicle every Thursday

Abergavenny Alzheimer’s Society Memory Café at Holy Trinity Hall 10.3012.30am. Red Cross will be in attendance.

Borough Theatre, 7.30pm. Dr Celyn Gurden-Williams will talk about Lady Llanover. Abergavenny Local History Society. Members are reminded to bring their card. Non-members may join on the night, or call 01873 850220

My Mother taught me about GENETICS "You're just like your father." Voter Comments: “No, I hate how spiteful and evil Ben has become, things can only end in disaster” says Kay from Pontypool

Llanwenarth Baptist Church, Govilon, 2pm, The Gwent Chamber Orchestra, led by David Gedge. Followed by cream tea. Price £5.

Llangynidr Hall Annual Concert Mid-Powys Youth Choir with Mario Conway, well known piano accordionist. Tel: 01874 730287/730228/7 30469.

My Mother taught me about ANTICIPATION -"Just wait until we get home." My mother taught me HUMOR "When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don't come running to me."

Evening, ‘Elvis’ Keith Davies and his own ‘Mafia’ pay tribute to the King live in concert at the Aber Theatre in aid of prostate Cancer Research and other chosen charities. Tickets on sale now from The Borough Theatre Box Office. Tel: 01873 850805.

An evening with Dafydd Wigley, St Michael’s Centre 8pm “What does the House of Lords have to offer Wales?” All Welcome. Tickets £4 incl. tea/coffee. Tel: 01873 856202.

And my all time favorite... JUSTICE "One day you'll have kids ... and I hope they turn out just like you!"

Govilon Car Boot. Main Road

Crickhowell History Society, Robin Williams talking on Transport and Industry, Gilwern to Llanfoist. 7.30pm at The Scout Hall, Castle Road, Crickhowell.

Sudoku Challenge

Pick up your copy of the Abergavenny Chronicle every Thursday

Jumble Sale, Mardy Hall, afternoon. Teas, Raffle.

Brecon Theatre, evening, ‘The Band of the Welsh Guards’ in concert, inclusive cost coach/theatre £25 per person depart Abergavenny Bus Station 5.30pm. Reservations Tel: 01873 852567. Abergavenny Farmers Market, Market Hall, Abergavenny. Fresh local produce. Govilon Car Boot. Main Road

Let us know what you think Text Yes, or No to 07800 609944 or email Standard rates apply please ask the bill payers permission. See next months edition for results.


The Spring Issue

March / April

Abergavenny Alzheimer’s Society Carer’s evening. 7.30pm at The Angel Hotel.

Pick up your copy of the Abergavenny Chronicle every Thursday Govilon Car Boot. Main Road

Gwent Bach Society, Stainer the Crucifixion and Renaissance Anthems, 7.30pm at St Mary’s Priory Church, Abergavenny. Tickets, £10. Tel: 01873 890259 Abergavenny High School For Girls, Old Girls Association, Annual Spring Lunch, Monmouthshire Golf Club, all ex-pupils welcome. Details: 01873 854463.

Sudoku Solution

The UK Clocks Move forward one hour on Sunday 25 March 01:00 GMT (02:00 BST)

TV to look out for

. . . o u D Dear

if you would like dear duo to help with your problems, please write to Dear Duo, The Gazette and Diary, 13 Nevill Street, Abergavenny, NP7 5AA.

depression, be it mild or severe. However, you have only been feeling this way for a few weeks. It could just be temporary. It's only when the symptoms have stayed for months or years that you might want to get checked out. However, if you're feeling upset, the best thing you can do is talk to your parents. You don't have to march up to them and say something like "I MIGHT HAVE DEPRESSION!" but you could tell them that you've been feeling a bit upset recently and explain exactly how youve felt, for how long for and all the "symptoms" you've had, and if this doesn't seem to help im sure your Dad will help you arrange a visit to your GP J

Dear Duo

The third season of GLEE, the smash-hit, award-winning musical comedy continues on Sky 1 HD from Thursday 1st March at 9pm with an unbroken episode run until the season finale.

GLEE has become established as the latest pop culture phenomenon. The series follows an optimistic teacher at McKinley High (WILL SCHUESTER played by Matthew Morrison) as he tries to inspire a group of oddball teenagers to realise their true star potential and restore the school's show choir, New Directions, to its former glory.

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I'm 13 years old, and over the past few weeks I've been feeling very very down and upset, i've put on a couple of pounds in weight, i've been eating more and less healthily and i've been more agitated. My dad suffers from depression, and I wondered if i maybe might suffer from depression? I researched the symptoms and I think i might suffer from it, but i don't know if i'm to young to suffer from it, and also i don't know what to do. I dont feel like i can talk to my parents about it. Help me please!! S Firstly, no your not to young and you really need to address this problem before it spirals out of control. It could be your weight making you depressed. You need to speak to your father as he will understand as he suffers also. I would start by firstly concentrating on following a healthy eating plan to get your weight back on track and then if you still feel down make an apointment and see your GP who will advise you. H

Sorry to those who have not had their problems answered yet we have limited space but we will eventually get round to you!

Well, first of all, it COULD be possible, because statistically 1 in 4 people have some form of

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The Spring Issue

March / April


What a Wonderful World David Attenborough has been making natural history programmes since the 1950s. The broadcaster chats about his new project in South Georgia and explains why he has no plans to slow this year David Attenborough is a TV legend. Now aged 85, he’s been making natural history programmes since the early 1950s, primarily for the BBC, where he also spent time as controller of BBC Two from 1965 to 1973. Among his most famous series are Life On Earth, The Trials Of Life, and his most recent project, Frozen Planet. Attenborough’s most recent programme wasThe Bachelor King, which will aired on Sky 3D at on New Year’s Eve. It charted the

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YOU DON’T SEEM TO BE SLOWING DOWN. ARE YOU WORKING ON ANYTHING ELSE? Yes! There’s a retrospective trilogy of programmes the BBC is doing, looking back at the past 60 years. As for 3D, we’re working on three programmes about Kew Gardens, using time-lapse photography. They will be going out next summer.




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YOU SEEM TO HAVE AN AFFINITY WITH THE COLD AT THE MOMENT, WHAT WITH THIS AND FROZEN PLANET I do know South Georgia. I’ve been there a few times and filmed there quite a lot, so I was able to suggest it in the first place, and what they might do while they were there.


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while ‘u’ wait



The Spring Issue

Dorrell Oliver Ltd



IT SOUNDS LIKE IT COULD ALMOST BE A HUMAN STORY In as much as things are born, eat, reproduce and die, yes. A story is a very important element in any programme as far as I’m concerned. So yes, we’re telling a story, but it’s not anthropomorphised. What it is is a story of what a typical king penguin does, what it eats, grows, how it finds its mate, lays its eggs and rears its chick. It seemed a fairly obvious story from our point of view, but it’s one that people don’t know, and it involves filming hazards that people don’t know, like how you thread your way through

Linden House, Monk Street, Abergavenny, Monmouthshire NP7 5NF Tel: 01873 852113 Fax: 01873 858523



HOW DID YOU GET INVOLVED IN THE BACHELOR KING? Anthony Geffen of Atlantic films and I had made a 3D film together, which I suppose was one of the first 3D films made that wasn’t for the cinema. It was about pterosaurs, flying prehistoric reptiles, and it did very well. The question was, what can we do next? I came up with the dea of going to South Georgia because it’s full of penguins, elephant seals, albatross and sea lions, all of which are very easily approachable, but all of which live very dramatic lives. And the island tself is spectacularly beautiful and hasn’t been seen all that much, so we decided to do one there.

chartered accountants


lifespan of a penguin living in South Georgia.

March / April

Demonstrations available

Get all fired up! Flickering flame brings a room to life Cosying up in front of an open fire is one of winter’s pleasures and those flickering flames bring a room alive. And nowadays there’s no need to feel left out in the cold if you haven’t got a chimney as there are fires to suit every home. Designers, recognising that fires are the new “eye candy” for rooms, have worked their magic on traditional fireplaces and created innovative solutions for homes with no flue. “People see fires as decorative objects these days, not necessarily primary heat sources,” says

■ Grande fireplace and hearth, £1,199 from B&Q

Simon Ray, managing director of Encompass Furniture. “We have a basic primeval need for fire, especially in winter, and just seeing flickering flames is cheering and visually irresistible.”

flat screen TV it literally brings fires to life on screen, and there’s a choice of 12 traditional or contemporary fire styles complete with sound effects - crackling logs or roaring gas flames.

Many contemporary fires are portable and can be placed anywhere in the home - they need no flue and use either gel or bioethanol, a renewable fuel with no smoke or odour.

Enhance the effect with aroma of an open fire by using the wood-smoke “Essence of John Galliano”room spray by Diptyque, £32 at Liberty.

And if you still think there’s no place for a fire in the home or you can’t afford one, don’t get hot under the collar.

I’ve tried both these and together they work so well that guests say they can “feel the heat” and love watching the flickering flames.

Simply switch on the brilliantly effective, Light The Box DVD, £10.99 from Amazon. Played on a

Turn up the heat at home by choosing a fire or “hot” effect to suit your flaming desires.

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SERVICING MOT TESTING STATION AIR CONDITIONING SPECIALIST High Street, Raglan, Monmouthshire Tel: (01291) 690423 Email:

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The Spring Issue

March / April


March Edition of the Gazette and Diary Magazine  

A Tindle Newspapers publication