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Gazette & Diary Magazine

The Spring Issue March / April Issue 24 / 2013 £1.50 - where sold


With Aberga the ve Chronic nny le

■ Pets ■ Style & Fashion ■ Homes and Gardens ■ Local Events ■ Competitions ■ Call the Experts ... and much more ...


The Spring Issue

March / April


In association with

DESIGNERS: Dave Simkiss

This month we help you with your Wedding woes, show our support to Prostate Cancer awareness month, and go back to basic banking. Also we set a reminder for the start of British Summertime with the clocks going forward on the 31st March. We would like to wish you all a Happy Easter and to all you Mums out there a Happy Mothers Day! So settle down in your favourite chair with a hot beverage and this months copy of the Gazette.

Page 08 Give it some welly!

Inside... Page 05 Back-toBasics Banking

John Gaulton

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.

ADVERTISING: Jenna Hopkins ext 35 For information on how to advertise in our next issue, contact: or telephone 01873 852187 ext 35 GENERAL MANAGER - Mary Purcell When you have finished reading the Gazette & Diary Magazine - please recycle it.

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.

PUBLISHING: Printed and distributed by NWN Media. Mold Business Park, Wrexham Road, Mold, CH7 1XY.

Page 16 Miranda Hart - Is It Just Me?

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.

The Abergavenny Chronicle

Page 10 A toast to the bride and groom

Nick Ramsay AM Assembly Member for Monmouth

Hospitals - Schools - Transport Environment - Housing

Pages 18-19 Cinema reviews

Write to: Nick Ramsay AM, Constituency Office, 16 Maryport Street, Usk, Monmouthshire, NP15 1AB E-mail:

For further information call: 01291 674 898 or 029 2089 8735

Registered charity nos. 1097940/SC038092/company no. 4764232 Photograph: Some photographs are posed by models. Produced by Action for Children 09/2011. 11/12 0282

The Spring Issue

March / April


The Swan at Hay Hotel Mothering Sunday Sunday, 10th March Treat the Mums in your family to a delicious Sunday Lunch in The Garden Room Restaurant From £16.50 per adult 12.00 – 3.00pm Book your table on 01497 821188 FREE family portrait photo shoot with every booking! Courtesy of Gill Perkins Photography & Janette Hill Images

Weddings at The Swan at Hay The Swan at Hay Hotel, set in the romantic Welsh Marches, on the Herefordshire/Powys border, is a truely wonderful setting for your wedding. With Georgian elegance, romantic gardens and an excellent front of house team, we work closely with you to ensure that you have the perfect wedding day. For more information, please visit our dedicated wedding site

The Swan at Hay Hotel Church Street ~ Hay-on-Wye ~ HR3 5DQ Tel. 01497 821 188 04

The Spring Issue

March / April



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.








For further details contact Geoff Harris 01873 735811

Back-to-Basics Banking High street banks are falling out of favour as savers and borrowers struggle to find a good deal. But a new trend of peer-to-peer lending may offer a glimpse of the future of banking says Leader Living finance writer Kathryn Gaw... We’ve not long passed the fourth anniversary of the Great British recession (the first one, that is), and things are not looking great.

agreed, repayment terms are set, so the lender makes a return on the initial investment and the borrower gets their loan.

A triple-dip recession is still a possibility, and in the meantime, austerity measures, rising inflation and eye-watering energy bills are keeping the majority of us on a financial knife-edge.

By cutting out the banks, P2P sites can offer competitive rates to both parties.

Most of us still blame the banks for getting us into this mess to begin with, and yet we keep trusting them with our life savings, pensions funds and debt. But over the past few years, a new kind of 'social' banking has been emerging, allowing savers and borrowers to bypass the banks entirely. Peer-to-peer (P2P) lenders such as, and have been quietly winning a following by offering investor returns of up to 9% per year, and personal loans for as little as 6.8% APR. The sites have been phenomenally popular. RateSetter has matched £51 million in loans since its launch in late 2010, and at the time of writing, market-leader Zopa had matched more than £265 million, while Funding Circle had raised almost £73 million. Last year, top financier Lord Rothschild made an undisclosed investment in Zopa, predicting that P2P lending will develop on a "significant scale" to become a major threat to high street banks. How it works P2P lending is banking at its most basic. If you have money to lend, you put it in a pot where borrowers can apply to access it. An interest rate is

What are the risks? As with any transaction, the main risk is that, as a lender, you won't get your money back. P2P sites are trying to offset this risk by imposing strict criteria on potential borrowers. The sites are also ruthless when it comes to borrowers - only around 12 in every 100 loan applicants will be accepted, meaning that potential borrowers must have the highest credit ratings possible. However, the result is that the 'bad' loan rate for P2P lenders is only around 1%, compared with a 3% risk in high street banks. There is also the possibility that the company itself might go under. Lack of regulation has also been a concern in the past. The three main P2P lenders have been campaigning for years for formal recognition by the FSA, and seem to have succeeded. The FSA recently announced the formation of a Financial Conduce Authority (FCA) which will assume regulatory control over P2P lenders, although the exact terms have not yet been made clear. In the meantime, the industry is self-regulated by the P2P Finance Association, which is run by Zopa, RateSetter and Funding Circle.

The Spring Issue

March / April


Gazette Giggles!

Colour me in

My friend has swallowed a daffodil bulb... They took her to a hospital and the doctor has assured us not to worry as she will be out in the Spring Q: What season is it when you are on a trampoline? A: Spring-time!

Organised by The Prostate Cancer Charity, this special month aims to raise awareness of prostate cancer, as well as raise money so the charity can provide even better support to both sufferers and their families.

make a donation, vist the official website.

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men and it is thought that here in the UK around 36 000 are diagnosed with this terrible disease each year.

By raising awareness we can help more people to get diagnosed earlier, so get involved!

All the volunteers have been affected by prostate cancer and know first hand how scary and difficult it can be to deal with. If you would like to get involved and

You can also learn how to check your prostate, and if you have any questions there is a free and confidential helpline.

The prostate is a small gland in the pelvis that is found only in men. About the size of a walnut, it is located between the penis and the bladder. It surrounds the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the penis.

Throughout the awareness month volunteers from the Prostate Cancer Charity will be working in your local community, giving group talks and providing information.

British Summer Time 2013

Q: What do you get when you pour hot water down a rabbit hole? A: A hot cross bunny

March is Prostate Cancer

The main function of the prostate is to help in the production of semen. The prostate produces a thick white fluid that is then liquefied by a special protein known as prostate-specific antigen (PSA).

Begins on Sunday, March 31

Q. What do you call a sheep without any legs? A. A Cloud

King Henry VIII School Ysgol Brenin Harri’r VIII Old Hereford Road, Abergavenny NP7 6EP

SIXTH FORM OPEN EVENING If you are considering studying any of the following subjects then why not visit our Sixth Form Open Evening?

King Henry VIII School offers a diverse and challenging curriculum for 11-18 year olds within a vibrant and achieving community. We are proud at King Henry VIII of our reputation for: ● A tradition of first class teaching by well qualified and caring teachers ● Offering a wide range of academic and vocational courses ● Achieving excellent examination results at both Key Stage 4 and 5 ● Providing an extensive range of extra curricular activities including sporting and musical activities and regular visits abroad

AS/A Level

AS/A Level (cont)


❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋

❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋

Art Biology Chemistry Economics English Food Technology French Further Maths Geography Geology History

❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋

Law Mathematics Media Studies Music Physics Product Design Psychology Religious Studies Sociology Spanish Theatre Studies Welsh

❋ ❋ ❋ ❋ ❋

Business Health & Social Care ICT Performing Arts Public Services Sport Studies Welsh Baccalaureate

Thursday 21st March 2013 at 6.30pm

For general information about the school or to arrange a visit please contact Nicholas Oaten (Headteacher) on 01873 735373 For further details about the Sixth Form Open Evening please contact Mrs L Morgan (Head of 6th Form) on 01873 736206 Respecting tradition, embracing the future.


The Spring Issue

March / April

‘Parchu traddodiad, camu’n hyderus i’r dyfodol’

Awareness Month

Treating prostate cancer

The fluid is mixed with sperm, produced by the testicles, to create semen.

What is good care for prostate cancer?

The prostate may get bigger as men get older. This causes no problems for two out of three men over 50. But if the prostate gets bigger it can press on the urethra and cause urinary symptoms. This is called benign prostate disease or benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). It usually affects men over 50 but is not cancer, and is treatable.

For many men with prostate cancer, no treatment will be necessary. Good care will mean keeping an eye on the cancer, ensuring that it does not develop into a fast-growing cancer.

Prostate cancer normally causes no symptoms until the cancer has grown large enough to put pressure on the urethra. This normally results in problems associated with urination. Symptoms can include: ■ needing to urinate more frequently, often during the night ■ needing to rush to the toilet ■ difficulty in starting to urinate or pee (hesitancy) ■ straining or taking a long time while urinating ■ weak flow ■ feeling that your bladder has not emptied fully These symptoms shouldn’t be ignored but they do not mean you definitely have prostate cancer. Many men's prostates get larger as they get older due to a non-cancerous condition known as benign prostatic hyperplasia or prostate enlargement. Symptoms that the cancer may have spread include bone and back pain, a loss of appetite, pain in the testicles, and unexplained weight loss.

When treatment is necessary, the aim is to cure or control the disease so that it does not shorten life expectancy and it affects everyday life as little as possible. Sometimes, if the cancer has already spread, the aim is not to cure it but to prolong life and delay symptoms. People with cancer should be cared for by a multidisciplinary team (MDT). This is a team of specialists who work together to provide the best treatment and care. The team often consists of a specialist cancer surgeon, an oncologist (a radiotherapy and chemotherapy specialist), a radiologist, pathologist, radiographer and a specialist nurse. Other members may include a physiotherapist, dietitian and occupational therapist. You may also have access to clinical psychology support.

■ ■

When deciding what treatment is best for you, your doctors will consider: ■ the type and size of the cancer ■ your general health ■ whether the cancer has spread to other parts of your body ■ what grade it is

Good care for prostate cancer includes giving information to men and their partners or carers about the treatment of prostate cancer and its effects on: ■ sex life ■ physical appearance ■ ability to control urination and bowel movement ■ other physical and psychological aspects of masculinity that might be affected by sex hormone treatment

localised prostate cancer (cancer that is just in the prostate gland) locally advanced prostate cancer (cancer that has spread beyond the prostate capsule, but is still connected to the prostate gland) relapsed (cancer that has returned after treatment) and metastatic prostate cancer (cancer that has spread outside the prostate gland, with no remaining link to the original cancer in the prostate gland).

Sudoku Challenge

Your MDT will be able to recommend what they feel are the best treatment options, but ultimately the decision is yours. In 2008, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) made recommendations about treatments that are offered to men with the three main stages of prostate cancer:

Solution on page 11

Can you provide a caring home for a child from overseas?

HOST FAMILIES REQUIRED for our Half Term breaks & occasional weekends

Families receive generous Expenses

Half Term Dates:

Plus Weekend Dates:

Fri 25 October - Tues 5 November 2013 Fri 21 February - Sun 2 March 2014

Fri 27 September - Sun 29 September 2013

Fri 23 May - Sun 1 June 2014

Fri 31 January - Sun 2 February 2014

For further details contact: Carol Pople-Baker Tel: 01874 615440 ●

The Spring Issue

March / April



Give it some welly!

High Class, High Street Butcher / Green Grocer / Delicatessen

Splash out on some bright coloured wellies this winter – you’re bound to need some! The humble Wellington boot is no longer a practical necessity for wet-weather days, it’s become a fashionable addition to your wardrobe.


Local Llanbedr Black Mountain Welsh Beef Local Welsh Glanusk Lamb Local free range Gloucester Old Spot Pork

Maybe you should go for the showstopper multi-coloured striped wellie at £12.99 from show zone

The Belgrave Hotel Situated on Crickhowell’s high street

Try out the black wellie, £22, from Brantano

The Esplanade, Tenby, Pembrokeshire SA70 7DU Tel: 01834 842377 Fax: 01834 842626

Come and enjoy the hotels superb seafront position overlooking Tenby’s beautiful south beach in a friendly and comfortable atmosphere.

Midweek B&B from £37.50 pppn

Arrive Friday or Saturday Enjoy 2 nights mix and match

High quality family butcher Delicatessan counter Locally produced meat and poultry 53 HIGH ST, CRICKHOWELL, NP8 1BH

01873 810405

£89.95 pp 3 Nights £127.45 pp Dinner, Bed & Breakfast on Saturday Bed & Breakfast Friday and Sunday Candlelit Dinner & Dance Thursday and Saturday Gala Menu, Breakfast in Bed Sunday Morning Ring now for Birthdays, Anniversaries and other special breaks.

Or maybe the pink and white/ blue rose print or black and white wellies, £30 from Fifty Plus have caught your eye

It is our policy to respect the dignity, privacy, independence of our residents and their families at all times.

Glaslyn Retirement Homes Limited Situated in the picturesque heart of the welsh countryside. The surrounding area offers some fantastic views & scenery. Glaslyn Retirement Home is committed to providing the very highest levels of care and service.To achieve this, each aspect of our facility is designed to meet the needs of our residents.


The Spring Issue

March / April

TEL: 01873 830218 FAX: 01873 832885

The Spring Issue

March / April


Wedding Feature

Little Black Cat

Thirsty Work

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

A toast to the bride and groom It's been more than five years since I got married on a hot summer afternoon, but I can remember it like yesterday. Some of our guests, however, struggled to recall anything the day after thanks to the zeal in which they attacked the champagne cocktails upon arrival.

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 covered entirely in chocolate 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, visit contact us on 01291 691234 or email: We will also be exhibiting at local wedding fayres during March so why not come and have a chat?

Fancy a drink? Lucy Corry raises her glass to the week's best buys.

When my new husband and I arrived at the reception venue after a purposefully short photo session, the party was in full swing. I didn't realise quite how thirsty our beloved friends and family were until one of the waiting staff approached me just before we sat down to eat. "I hate to interrupt you," she said as hubby and I gazed lovingly at each other, "but there's just £25 left on the bar tab. What would you like us to do?"

Now, promising to love someone for richer and for poorer is all very well, but most newly-weds don't expect to run out of cash before the ink has even dried on the marriage certificate. Weddings are big business, and with the average UK nuptials estimated to cost around £20,000 it's no wonder many couples claim they can't afford to tie the knot. It's not always an option, but holding your after-match function at home or in a private venue is a great way to beat costs. If you're worried about what to order in the drinks line, online fine wine retailer has a new wedding wine service that promises to take the stress out of the equation.

A simple phone call will get you a bespoke wine list to match your taste, menus and budget - at lower than usual prices created by one of the company's advisors. To get an idea of what they have on offer, check out the wine list at Once you've made a decision, delivery can be arranged in a couple of days and - even better - it's free to any UK mainland address. There's also a standard sale or return policy for larger orders. To save even more, customers who collect their orders of French wines themselves from Calais can save about £1.50 per bottle for wine and £2 for champagne. While I commend any money-saving efforts - the wedding industry is full of charlatans who love nothing better than helping starry-eyed lovers part with their cash - beware of false economies. Goodquality sparkling wine is a better bet than cheap and nasty champagne (my old favourite Lindauer Brut is a winner and often on special) and there's a lot to be said for offering your guests non-alcoholic drinks, especially if it's hot.

Suggestions Drinks made from elderflowers were once viewed as sacred and played a vital part in religious ceremonies, so even if you're having a secular wedding, serving elderflower drinks would be a nice touch. Belvoir Fruit Farms' latest offering is a Pear & Elderflower Presse, which combines the delicate scented taste of elderflowers with sweet pressed pear juice and gently sparkling spring water (available nationwide, RRP £2.65 for a 750ml bottle). If you feel like getting creative - or fancy something to serve up to guests at a barbecue the day after - try this light, fruity cocktail. Quantities below are to serve one,

Little Black Cat is a wedding cake designer based in Monmouthshire. All of our beautiful cakes are made with the ultimate attention to detail. Contemporary or classical, our designs will help to make your celebration unique and special.

Dream Dresses Monmouth & Surrounding Areas

tel: 01291 691234


The Spring Issue

March / April Contact Sheila Robertshaw. Tel 0843 289 2103 Bespoke “made to measure” Bridal Prom & Evening wear....

Wedding Feature but it could be easily made in crowd-sized quantities for a very English summer afternoon wedding. Belvoir Elderflower Cordial is available nationwide, RRP £4.15 for a 750ml bottle. Elderflower fizz ● 20ml Belvoir Elderflower Cordial ● 3 lime wedges ● 50ml Pink Grapefruit juice ● 50ml Cloudy Lemonade ● Lime wedge Stir all ingredients together in a highball glass, add ice and garnish with a freshly squeezed lime wedge.

Drink this While many of the guests at our wedding were happy to drink away our honeymoon money, they were much more circumspect at their own nuptials. My husband's brother served wine so dreadful that no-one could bear to drink it, while my niece offered iced water after her wedding ceremony. To strike the right balance between cheap and cheerful, I think a tray of white port and tonic cocktails are suitably festive and easy to make even for novice bartenders. Just fill a quarter of a tall glass with white port (try Cockburn's Light White Port, available from Sainsbury's, Morrisons and Somerfield, RRP £7.49), then add ice, tonic water and a slice of lemon.

Liquid news ■ Oh no, spilt wine on your wedding outfit? You need Wine Away, an eco-friendly solution to red-wine stains on clothing, carpets and other furnishings. Wine Away, which is made from fruit and vegetable extracts, is the only red-wine stain remover ever recommended by the Good Housekeeping Institute. If you're prone to wine-related accidents (or are dreading Uncle Ron flinging a glass of celebratory merlot all over your specially-made white satin wedding shoes), a bottle is a musthave for your wedding kit.

Wine Away is available from and a range of supermarkets and wine stores nationwide, priced £8.99. ■ Scandinavian design company Menu has loads of elegant wedding gifts, such as a very stylish wine decanter (£54.95). Visit to find out more or call 078 3476 7211 for stockists.

Monmouthshire Registration Service Sudoku Solution

The Register Office will be moving from Abergavenny to Usk on 1 July 2013. The new location will be perfect for a smaller, intimate ceremony whether it be a marriage or civil partnership, naming ceremony or renewal of vows.

From page 07

TV to look out for

The registrar will still be attending Nevill Hall Hospital on a daily basis to register births and deaths If you would like more information about our new venue please phone 01873 735435 or email

Hustle actress Kelly Adams is returning to television with new Afghanistan-set sitcom Bluestone 42, which starts on BBC Three on Tuesday, March 5. The actress discusses the controversy surrounding the show, reveals what it was like filming in South Africa and explains why she's determined to win a part in a US pilot. ●

The Spring Issue

March / April


Situated in the heart of the Welsh valleys, elevated high on Maesrudded Hill, with spectacular views over the surrounding countryside Tel: 01495 220011 Fax: 01495 228217




24TH MARCH 2013



PRIVATE DINING Our Seasons Restaurant extension is available for private hire for parties from 10 - 30. Add that extra sparkle to a special occasion with the luxury of a private room. Choose from a wide selection of Al a Carte, Table dhote, Set and buffet menu's.

FUNCTIONS We can take care of any function or private party you have in mind. We have catered for hundreds of people for various occasions such as birthday parties, proms, funerals and anniversaries. Just get in touch with our team to find out what we can do for your special occasion.

SUNDAY LUNCH Head Chef Nigel Parker & his assistant Mandy have been serving up their renowned Sunday roasts for over ten years, and are more popular than ever. Served every Sunday between 12 and 2 in either the wood panelled Seasons restaurant or the fairy light Islwyn Ballroom. Why not make this Sunday, one to remember?

Reservations are highly recommended to avoid dissapointment. 2 courses - £12.95

3 courses - £15.95



The Spring Issue

March / April

The perfect gift for Mother’s Day! All Mum’s deserve a day off now and then and Wiltshire Farm Foods has the ideal solution to make life easier for her, especially on Mother’s Day! There are over 250 tempting options to choose from in the FREE colour brochure available from your local outlet at Monmouth. Every mealtime can be catered for, including breakfast and afternoon tea. All main meals are made in their very own kitchens in Trowbridge in Wiltshire using ingredients from carefully selected suppliers, allowing complete traceability so you can be assured of the quality and integrity of the delicious range of nutritious meals and desserts. With a variety of meal sizes, all appetites are catered for, including Mini Meals when you’re after a lighter meal or snack or Hearty Meals which are perfect when you fancy a larger portion. Special diets are also catered for including Low Fat, Gluten Free, Low Salt and a range of ‘Free From’ options. All main meals are suitable for people with Diabetes, and the range of Diabetic Hot Desserts allows you to enjoy tucking into something sweet-tasting – they just contain less sugar to help your diabetic diet.

Whenever you’re ready, you can simply heat your meal from frozen in an oven or microwave and enjoy. So a piping hot meal is only ever minutes away!

Shopping couldn’t be easier! Ordering is easy, either by phone or shop on-line. Meals are delivered FREE of charge and direct to your door by your caring, CRB police-checked driver and if you wish, your driver will even pop the meals in the freezer for you.

Gift vouchers make a lovely gift idea for Mother’s Day and can be purchased on –line at or by phoning 0800 773 773. Vouchers are available in multiples of £10, £15 and £20.

So go on, give your Mum a treat this Mother’s Day and introduce her to Wiltshire Farm Foods! For more information visit the website or call the local office on 01600 892855 when Brian and Sara and their friendly team will be on hand to help.

The Spring Issue

March / April


Handy Expert Services Assembly Member


Monmouth MP David Davies holds regular advice surgeries throughout the constituency. To make an appointment telephone 01291 672817 or email


Karen’s Blinds upto 1.8m width and any drop

Formerly K&M Blinds Suppliers of all types of blinds Grade 1,2,3 Used 3 for £99 - 4 for £135 5 for £160 - 6 for £180 7 for £195

Free Quotes - Free Fitting - OAP discounts 01495 313001 • 01633 932958 • 07969 477191


Celtic Computer Systems

Opening times Monday-Friday 8-5

New Laptops with manufacturers 12 mth warranties wherever you are in the UKstarting from £399 incl. VAT with legal software BEST BROADBAND DEAL! go to

Servicing, Repairs, Updates, Virus Problems

Reduced pricing on legal Microsoft Office with CD and licence

Clean up junk, erase confidential information

Not just added to computer as other suppliers do

Telephone: 01873 858111 email:

Ford Dealership

Electrical Ltd Wholesale electrical supplies available to trade and general public. ■ Quality products at excellent prices. ■ Lighting section now open

Martins Grove Business Park, Whitchurch 01600 891242

Golf Centre


◆ Magnificent Views ◆ Well Drained Course ◆ Friendly Club House

Your Local Ford Dealer For All Your New And Used Cars


High Street, Raglan, Monmouthshire

Tel: (01291) 690423

Helping Hand Reliable and Friendly help Tackling the jobs you can’t. (or would rather not) For example... ● Grass cutting ● Digging ● Hedge Trimming ● Fencing ● Leaf clearing ● Putting up cupboards, shelves and curtain rails ● Clearing out lofts & garages Etc, etc,etc….. For reliable, friendly and trustworthy help, at a competitive rate…

Mob: 07871 415919

Waste Disposal House, Loft & Garage Clearances Home, Office & Commercial Movers All Non-Hazardous Waste Collected

No Job Too Big Or Small, We Move Them All!! Mobile: 0777296 666 Telephone: 01873 853717

The Spring Issue

March / April


Four Paws BO A R D I N G K E N N E L S

Small friendly and comfy • Outside walks Personal individual attention to ensure your dog has a “Happy Holiday”

J a n et B a m b ro u g h , L o w e r M a e s c o e d , Lon gtown , He refo rd sh ire HR 2 0HP

01873 860237

Mini Digger Hire Licensed Commercial Waste Carriers

Tel: 01873 856223 Fax: 01873 852177 Email:


Helping Hand Home & Garden Services


◆ Visitors Welcome

Old Ross Rd, Abergavenny, Monmouthshire. NP7 8NG.


Telephone: 01873 840166

◆ Membership Available

MPS PLANT HIRE 3 ton Mini Digger 3 ton Swivel Dumper with experienced operator Groundwork excavations and pipe laying etc

Tel: 07730530177 01873 831324

Pest Control

Gavenny Pest Control Agricultural



traditional and modern methods used ●

Mole Control Specialists

Wasps Newsts Treated within 12 hrs

Matthew Jones tel: 01873 856035 / 07772 186159

Renovations SUSTAINABLE HOME DEVELOPER All your building and renovation needs

March 2013

• New Build • Extensions • Kitchens • Loft Conversions • Plans drawn up on request • Local References

Tel 07952 108955 Building you sustainable homes for the future


Stoves ● Fireplaces ● Surrounds Gas Fires ● Ecofans ● Free quotations ● Restoration


Cinio Gwyl Dewi Cymreigyddion Y Fenni gyda’r Gantores werin a thelynores Sian James Clwb Golff Sir Fynwy Llanffwyst 7.00am 7.30 Tocynnau, £21. Manylion 01873 856202

The complete service

Wallbrook Farm Allensmore, Hereford HR2 9BE

☎ 01981 570456

Storage / Workshops Secure Storage/Workshop Units available in Goytre. 1000 sq ft. £60/week, long or short term. Other sizes also available.

“Five Broken Cameras” Oscarnominated film about nonviolent resistance of a Palestinian village against Israel. Melville Theatre, Abergavenny. 7pm, Entrance Free, Donations welcome.

Llangynidr Hall, The Three Welsh Tenors and Synergy. 7.30pm, bar available, Tel: 01874 730287, 730228, 730469

Seedy Sunday Abergavenny’s Annual seed & plant swap event. Trinity Church Hall, Baker St, 11.00- 2.30pm. Free Entry, “Fair Trade” refreshments, Tools for Self Reliance and other local groups. Info - Richard 01873 854662

Tel: 07966 467365 or email

Dog Grooming Abergavenny Local History Society, Roger Foster will talk about the canals of South-East Wales at the Borough Theatre, &.30pm. Nonmembers are welcome to join on the night.

Mobile dog grooming service Call Megan Bransom

07525 833966

Jumble Sale Mardy Hall, refreshments, raffle, doors open 1-15 Llantllio Pertholey VPA Pandy and Monnowside Ploughing Society Easter Egg Bingo, Pandy Hall 7.30 for 8. 01873 890591

Bristol Musical, Starlight Express, evening, coach/travel £50, early booking advised. Reservations 01873 852567

The Spring Issue

March / April


Is It Just Me? Embarrassing moments are the story of Miranda Hart's life. But, as she tells her former teenage self in her new book, it'll all be ok in the end. James Rampton meets the comedy star Miranda Hart sighs with mock horror as she recalls a particularly traumatic incident from her childhood. "A pigeon once landed on my head, and that's scarred me for life," she explains. "But now we've come full circle and the story makes good dinner party conversation." Indeed, Hart has made a bit of an art of revisiting mortifying moments. Embarrassment may have plagued her youth, but now provides endless comedy inspiration. Her hit BBC sitcom, Miranda, in which she plays an exaggerated version of herself, a klutzy joke shop owner who is unlucky in love and life, has won a string of gongs, including three British Comedy Awards and three Royal Television Society awards.

Although the show follows a storyline, the premise for the comedy is rooted in the same turf as Hart's stand-up - taking the mickey of out herself and drawing on her wealthy supply of humiliating and awkward moments. She makes the most of her 6ft 1in frame, which, rather than being imposing, only serves to make her more endearing to viewers, particularly on the many occasions she falls over on screen. Reflecting on the popularity of the show, she says: "It's very hard to be objective about it, but I think it works because everyone feels an idiot at times. "Some people feel that all the time, and others just occasionally. But all viewers identify with that faltering attempt to deal with life. "We often fail and try to cover it up, and some people are better at covering it up than others." Off-screen too, she says she has a tendency to be "open and direct", which can have amusing consequences.

"I don't like small talk. My friends will say to me before Mary arrives, 'Don't mention Mary's divorce'. "Then the first thing I say when Mary comes through the door is, 'Tell me all about your divorce!' Come on, she wants to talk about it and I'm desperate to hear about it. So let's crack on! "That openness comes across, and maybe people warm to that."

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would have been wise to have taken on board, if the star's new book is anything to go by.

Despite reading politics at university, French and Saunders were her heroes and she knew she wanted a career in comedy.

Is It Just Me?, which runs through some of the more squirm-inducing incidents of her life, is predicated on the dialogue between the adult Hart and her Neighboursobsessed teenage self, and delivers advice borne out of bitter personal experience on how to navigate life's more testing times.

She won roles in shows such as Smack The Pony, Absolutely Fabulous and Not Going Out, but it was with Miranda, which will return for a third series in December, that she achieved nationwide recognition.

There are moments of typical selfdeprecation, such as when the star compares her looks to "a sack of offal that's been drop-kicked down a lift shaft into a pond". The author hopes readers will be able to follow "the wonderful laws of Mirandaland" and sidestep the sort of social disasters she has frequently collided with. It clearly pays off, and fans often approach Hart in the street to tell her they relate to her sitcom persona. "A lot of parents come up to me and say, 'Thank you. Since watching your sitcom my daughter feels better about herself. She says, 'At least I'm not as bad as Miranda - I can relax about my life!'' "That's a real compliment," Hart proudly adds. It is a compliment that Hart's younger self

Explaining the idea behind the project, Hart says: "It's the concept of talking to my younger self. Since my sitcom has done well, I've often thought, 'Imagine what my 13-year-old self would think about what has happened to me!'" Hart, who turned 40 in December, was born in Torquay, Devon, but grew up in Petersfield in Hampshire, and was educated at the prestigious girls' school Downe House in Berkshire.

She has also proven to have a knack at straight acting, and was nominated for a best supporting actress TV Bafta for her role in

BBC1 drama Call The Midwife. There is no doubt that her career is going swimmingly, and Hart hopes her book will offer some comfort that "life gets better as we get older. "It sounds a bit naff to say it, but we should all try to follow our dreams, and the sooner we admit that, the better." ■ Is It Just Me? by Miranda Hart is published by Hodder & Stoughton

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The Perfect Gift

Gazette Cinema reviews

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Broken City (15) New York cop Billy Taggart (Mark Wahlberg) takes down an unarmed suspect and faces a prison sentence for his apparent lapse in judgment. It looks like an open and shut case until popular Mayor Nicholas Hostetler (Russell Crowe) steps in with a deal, making clear to Billy that he expects a favour in return. Seven years later, Billy is a low-rent private detective. He owes 42,000 dollars - the situation is dire. Out of the blue, Hostetler, who is embroiled in a bitter election battle with charismatic rival Jack

Valliant (Barry Pepper), calls in his marker: he asks Billy to gather evidence to prove that his wife Cathleen (Catherine Zeta-Jones) has been unfaithful. A simple surveillance operation reveals a hotel room liaison between Cathleen and Paul Andrews (Kyle Chandler), manager of the Valliant campaign. Her betrayal seems clear, then Andrews is murdered and Billy grapples with the chilling probability that he signed the campaign manager's death warrant. Rating: Three stars

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Cloud Atlas (12A) The multi-layered narrative begins in 1849 when lawyer Adam Ewing (Jim Sturgess) discovers slave Autua (David Gyasi) stowed aboard a ship bound for America. In 1936 Cambridge,

musician Robert Frobisher (Ben Whishaw) bids farewell to his lover Rufus Sixsmith (James D'Arcy) to head to Edinburgh where he will work alongside famous composer Vyvyan Ayrs (Jim Broadbent). In 1973 California, crusading journalist Luisa Rey (Halle Berry) meets an ageing Rufus, and is drawn into a deadly mystery involving the elderly nuclear physicist and a hit man called Bill Smoke (Hugo Weaving). In present-day London, publisher Timothy Cavendish (Broadbent) falls victim to a prank and becomes trapped in a care home run by the sadistic Nurse Noakes (Weaving). In 2144 Neo Seoul, genetically engineered fast-food worker Sonmi-451 (Doona Bae) escapes the bonds of servitude and goes on the run with rebel Hae-Joo Chang (Sturgess). In 2321, Zachry (Tom Hanks) agrees to help technologically advanced visitor Meronym (Berry) head into the mountains to find the Cloud Atlas communication station. In the far future, these stories gradually knit together... Rating: Four stars A Good Day To Die Hard (12A) For this fifth chapter, John McClane (Bruce Willis) is dispatched to the gridlocked Russian capital to visit his son Jack (Jai Courtney), who has been arrested for murder. No sooner has John strutted into Moscow than terrorists blow up the courthouse with the intention of kidnapping highprofile prisoner Yuri Komarov (Sebastian Koch), who holds vital information that could bring down corrupt Russian politician Viktor Chagarin (Sergei Kolesnikov). As the dust settles, McClane sees his

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son leading Komarov to safety with gun-toting assassins in hot pursuit. John gives chase and learns that Jack is a CIA hotshot on a top-secret mission to protect Komarov and his dossier of evidence. Rating: Two stars Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters 3D (15) Hansel (Jeremy Renner) and his feisty sister Gretel (Gemma Arterton) had their first encounter with witches as children when they stumbled into a house made of delicious candy. Through luck and enterprise, the siblings flung the diabolical crone into her oven, establishing their reputation throughout

and Lexi (Mimi Kirkland). Perhaps Katie could be his second chance at happiness... Rating: Three stars

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the land as protectors against the dark arts. When several children from one sleepy village go missing, Sheriff Berringer (Peter Stormare) blames local woman Mina (Pihla Viitala) and prepares to burn her as a witch. The eponymous heroes intervene in the nick of time. The siblings set about tracking down powerful grand witch Muriel (Famke Janssen), who is kidnapping local tykes as a sacrifice during the forthcoming night of the Blood Moon. The witches are aided by a hulking ogre called Edward (voiced by Robin Atkin Downes). With the odds stacked against them, Hansel, Gretel and an enthusiastic protege (Thomas Mann) lay their lives on the line to save the children and send Muriel and her coven back to hell. Rating: Three stars

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Safe Haven (12A) A distraught wife, Erin Tierney (Julianne Hough), flees the scene of a crime - perhaps murder, perhaps self-defence. The terrified spouse heads to the bus station with detective Kevin Tierney (David Lyons) in hot pursuit. She travels far away from her troubled past and hopes to throw the cops off her scent by alighting early in the quaint fishing community of Southport, North Carolina. In this picture-postcard idyll, Erin rechristens herself Katie Feldman and lands a job as a waitress at the local seafood restaurant. She also secures lodgings in a remote cabin in the woods, and enjoys a flirtation with hunky widower Alex Wheatley (Josh Duhamel), who is coming to terms with his wife's death while raising two demanding children, Josh (Noah Lomax)

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Gazette and Diary monthly magazine published by The Abergavenny Chronicle Newspaper