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YO U R GU I D E TO E VE RY TH I N G FR O M E

AUGUST 2021

ISSUE 125

We Feed The World - Events Exploring The Future Of Agriculture

Artists & Makers Of Frome with Emma Chapman

Crimes In Egypt - a comic murder mystery


ISSUE 125 AUGUST 2021

www.wefeedtheworld.org London 2018 / Frome 2021

Photographer — Rena Effendi, Romania.

Rose Langley At the time of writing, it is so unbelievably hot that I think even my eyeballs are sweating. That I am not a hot weather lover is confirmed by my current situation, sat as I am, next to our router in the boiling hot goldfish bowl of my sitting room, with overheating laptop burning a hole on my lap, due to its sudden and rather selfish inability to connect to the internet unless via a cable. Cool. As someone who grew up in your basic chilly cottage, ice on the inside of my bedroom window in the winter, I was not raised for heat. Our dog Fred appears to share my feelings. He lies, unmoving, in the heat, belying his usual puppyish demeanour, and I hear nothing from him from one hour to the next.

Friday 2nd July - Friday 10th September Tuesday - Saturday 9am - 4pm A stunning multi-venue photographic exhibition of smallholder farmers and fisherfolk from world-class photographers including Rankin, Graciela Iturbide, Rena Effendi, Nick Ballon and many more.

As I drive to my father’s house, I often pass groups of sweltering teens on their way to swim in the local river (if its effects on the stomach of my dog are anything to go by, this is an illadvised venture), lugging bags of snacks, drinks and towels. For them, summer has truly arrived and with it, a freedom from school or college. I remember my school holidays spent swimming at Warleigh Weir, jumping as far as we could into the deepest part. I remember the smell of the water and the contents of our inadequate picnics. I remember when my friend got his foot stuck in the ribcage of a sunken cow. True story.

» The List Recommends

Venue 1— The Whittox Gallery Rise, Whittox Lane Frome BA11 3BY www.thewhittoxgallery.com

Venue 2 — Gallery at The Station Station Approach Frome BA11 1RE

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» Cover story

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» We Feed The World

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» Pure Interiors

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» Food with Folk » Health & Wellbeing

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» Home & Garden

21-25

» Fossil on Frome

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Out in the back garden, I hear the sounds of multiple children in multiple gardens screaming and splashing in paddling pools. They are happy. The baby a few doors down, not so much. I think of times, when I lived in Bristol, and we would catch the train to Swansea and hitch our way out to the Gower. We’d swim in crystal waters and camp in small, hot tents. I think back to the endless summers of my youth, swinging in the hammock with my hero brother. Climbing trees and splashing with friends in the giant pond, filled from a spring and which my dad cut out of the ground with a digger. I remember going to bed with the sun still streaming in through the curtains, listening to the sounds of the older children still playing out on the lane. I’m not a fan of the heat, this we have already established. But summer is the time when memories are made. It is a time when magic is made. So, though I will be spending my days undercover in this heat wave, I will inevitably find the nostalgia of my youth, and the enjoyment of others, creating their own summer memories, as uplifting as I find the welcome news of the thunderstorms which are forecast for a few days’ time.

Design: blackinkstudio.co.uk Front cover: Crimes In Egypt Copy deadline for the September issue: August 13th

Published by Rose Langley, trading as Make a List Publishing, Sole Proprietor Editor Rose Langley 07957878717 rose@thelistfrome.co.uk . thelistfrome.co.uk *The publishers shall not be liable for any loss occasioned by the failure of an advertisement to appear, or any damage or inconvenience caused by errors, omissions or misprints.


» the list recommends « Frome Farmers Market Back at the Cheese & Grain The first full-size Frome Farmers Market takes place inside the Cheese & Grain on August 14th, after an enforced break of 16 months, due to the pandemic. The market, as always, will be championing our local farmers and producers, and introducing lots of new artisan food and drink traders, showcasing the breadth and excellence of what our beautiful region produces.  It has never been more important to support local farmers and producers, and how and where you choose to spend can have a powerful impact on the local economy. You can visit the market website to sign up for a newsletter to see who will be attending each month. The wide range of producers includes people like the Happy Forager with his unique selection of foraged and cultivated gourmet mushrooms, the award-wining Brown Cow Organics who produce the highest quality beef and yogurt, and the lockdown phenomenon the Village Bakery whose doughnuts have already acquired legendary status!

This free market takes place on the second Saturday of each month, from 9am-1pm in the Market Hall, which has been fitted with a state-of-the-art new ventilation system to minimise any health risks as we re-open. However, each event will be carefully managed to ensure it is Covid safe, with sanitiser on entry, contactless payment options, safe queuing, and face coverings indoors.

13 - 30 August 2021 galleries | round tower | studios | shop | cafe 2 Bridge St . Frome . BA11 1BB | 01373 473980 Thu - Sun 10am - 4pm | FREE ENTRY

www.blackswanarts.org.uk Registered Charity No.292463

www.somersetfarmersmarkets.co.uk

Playday - a Summer of Fun 4th August / 12 - 4pm A Summer of Play is this year’s theme for the National Playday, and Frome Town Council are inviting young and old to join their Playday activities at Victoria Park and the Mary Bailey playing fields on Wednesday 4th August from 12 – 4pm. It promises to be an afternoon of fun and games for all to take part in. The day will include competitions and prizes, with activities such as storytelling and playful poetry to slacklining, skateboarding, graffiti boards and creative crafts, not to mention an array of sports including basketball, rugbytots, tennis, martial arts and much, much more! The event is free to attend, and all the current Covid restrictions will be followed on the day. 4

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Tri.art Theatre School presents OLIVER! JR FRIDAY 20 AUGUST SATURDAY 21 AUGUST

SUMMER READS 2021

Something Underground presents THE SPIRIT OF WOODSTOCK SATURDAY 11 SEPTEMBER

Come and choose from 12 of the very best fiction and non-fiction paperback titles each with £2 OFF!

PETE FIRMAN – BAG OF TRICKS FRIDAY 01 OCTOBER

Come in and browse or order online at www.shop.winstonebooks.co.uk

01373 465949 merlintheatre.co.uk Bath Rd . Frome . BA11 2HG

www.winstonebooks.co.uk

T: 01373 473111 E: winstonebooks3@gmail.com 9-10 Cheap St | Frome | Somerset | BA11 1BN

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» the list recommends « Bike Bath – Ride around Somerset

NOW OPEN

22nd August

Taking bookings Tuesday – Saturday from 5:30pm

Bike Bath is a day of short, medium and long marked rides, taking in the best scenery of Somerset, Wiltshire and Gloucestershire, with three start and finish locations in Frome, Bath and Devizes. This year there are starts and finishes at Bath Recreation Ground, Frome Rugby Club and Devizes Sports Centre (this start is TBC). Entry fees for adults are £30 for the medium and long routes and £25 for the short route, with children being charged £15. Charities’ teams are also encouraged to enter. As an entrant you will benefit from: • • • • •

a free medal at the end of your ride timing and routes via the new Iconic App fully waymarked routes with a back-up route map and GPS files feed stations on the long and medium routes showcasing the best produce from local food and drink suppliers on-course first aid support.

Bike Bath’s charity for 2021 is Dorothy House Hospice . You can make a donation or set up a Just Giving fundraising page for them when you register. To sign up to Bike Bath go to: iconiccyclingevents.co.uk

FUSION FOOD CREATIVE COCKTAILS NEW SEASONAL MENUS LAUNCHED EVERY WEEK See online for details

www.fatradish.co.uk 01373 596102

20 Miles – an Exhibition by David Parfitt

Follow us online @fatradishfrome

Until 26th September / Black Swan Arts

20 Market Place . Frome Somerset . BA11 1AN

Somerset landscape artist David A. Parfitt is showing a series of paintings and prints which reflect on our connections with nature, place and home. The exhibition shows a mixture of dramatic, sometimes almost abstract, watercolours and striking monochromatic monoprints, created in David’s studio during the lockdowns of 2020 and 2021. His work focusses on the trees, wetlands and woods of Somerset, and explore the tension between the restrictions that have been placed on all of us over the past year and the desire to get out into the natural world.

AUSTRALIAN INFLUENCED EATERY private catering available 14 king st frome ba11 1bh

By staying close to home, David rediscovered places on his daily walks around his village, making new connections and creating new memories. Conversely, he also longed for his regular autumn and winter walks around the Mendip hills and Somerset wetlands. David’s paintings are representational, but his intention is ‘to make things that have a sense of place without looking overly contrived or deliberate’. His method involves working quickly, drawing seemingly haphazard marks with a brush and combining these with loose washes without getting over-involved in detail. 6

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seating inside and out superfood smoothies, cold press juices, specialty coffee, poke bowls, buddha bowls, acai smoothie bowls, sweet treats. nooktheshop.co.uk

01373 471368

@nooktheshop

TUE-sat 9-4

Celebrate the full indoor return of

FROME CHEESE & GRAIN FARMERS’ MARKET Saturday 14th August 9am - 1pm Farmers • Food & Drink • Music

Proud to support Somerset Farmers’ Markets th-law.co.uk

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» the list recommends «

Return of The Frome independent An Update From The Market Team

“T HMS Pinafore 12th August / 7pm / The Merlin Theatre Set on board the warship HMS  Pinafore, the opera cheerfully mocks such great British institutions as class, patriotism and the Royal Navy. Josephine, the captain’s daughter, is in love with Ralph, a common sailor, but her father wants her to marry Sir Joseph Porter, First Lord of the Admiralty. The couple are caught as they elope from the ship and Ralph is

Emma Housely Summer Story 14th August - 28th September / The WHY Gallery Somerset artist Emma Housley paints abstracts which explore vivid colour and rich experience. In particular she is inspired by the experience of water, swimming, light and heat, working in acrylic and a wide variety of mixed media to explore the fascinating process of painting.

locked in the ship’s dungeon. Only when certain revelations are made by Buttercup, a dockside vendor, can everyone end up freely marrying their true hearts’ loves. ​ This wonderful comic opera gets the complete Illyria treatment, faithfully performed by a reduced cast on a beautiful nautical set. For tickets go to merlintheatre.co.uk

he first Sunday in March felt as though it was cursed for a while; galeforce winds, storms and even snow

We are keeping everything crossed that the lifting of restrictions remains in place and 5th September will see our return. But, we are all primed for things to

putting a stop to our planned season launches in recent years. In 2020 we held our breath throughout February but, miraculously, the weather held for our March market. What none of us could have foreseen was that, in the end, that market would be the only event we would be able bring you in 2020 and to date.

change quickly these days – so please keep an eye on our social media and website for updates! When we return, we will be encouraging as much Covid safety as possible, such as asking staff, traders and visitors to stay home if they have Covid symptoms or have been asked to self-isolate, using the NHS Test and Trace app (we’ll have a QR code), cashless payments and shopping with your eyes!

As many of you are aware, the scale of our event means that it would simply not have been safe to bring back our event. We are a small team, who are based here in Frome, and whilst we were frustrated not to be able to operate our markets, the safety of all of our brilliant staff, traders, local community and visitors was our top priority. Sadly, due to the delay in lockdown easing, we had to postpone our return until Sunday September 5th rather than Sunday 1st August as originally hoped. As a substitute, and a way to ease everyone back into the idea of a live outdoor event in the town centre, we came up with a plan to run a small French style night market for July 30th. Hopefully some of you will have attended A Little Night Market and had a great experience!

In the meantime, you can check out lots of our traders on the new Market Directory section of our website and join us for the online edition of our August market over on our Instagram stories. This will take place on Sunday 1st August. We’ll have makers, designers, food producers, flea traders, local shops and businesses promoting their products and making exclusive offers and discounts throughout the day. We’d like to share our awe and admiration for the tenacious people who have adapted their businesses to pandemic life, and thank everyone who has supported our designers, makers, food producers and the small creative businesses here in Frome. Hope to see you all in September!”

Emma’s exhibition, Summer Story, at The WHY Gallery, is based on the luminous colours of summer. Works on canvas, wood and paper will reflect her preoccupation with water, light and warmth, and the nostalgia of summers past. The exhibition runs from August 14th- September 28th at takes place at The WHY Gallery, 3 Stony Street, Frome. www.whygallery.co.uk thefromeindependent.org.uk 8

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Photo credits: Pamela Raith Photography

CRIMES IN EGYPT NEW OLD FRIENDS THEATRE COMPANY

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ew Old Friends theatre company, run by Frome-based wife and husband team Heather Westwell and Feargus Woods Dunlop, has been lucky enough to have many highlights since it was formed in 2008. The company has won multiple awards, gained five-star reviews, enjoyed critically and commercially successful runs at the Edinburgh Fringe, and sold out big venues all over the country with a distinctive brand of fast-paced, multi-role, quick-change, clever comedies. But one of the most joyous experiences was two rainy nights last December at the Merlin’s ECOS amphitheatre, with a Covid-defiant, outdoor, socially distanced, stripped back performance of one of their hugely popular ‘Crimes…’ plays. By firelight. In the rain.   Anyone who was there for either of them can attest to the joy and magical energy of the events which were part of Signal Fires, a national festival in which the country’s leading touring theatre companies put on outdoor fireside performances in their home towns. The festival was designed as a beacon of light, a pledge that professional touring theatre would return. Now the company is back to make good that promise.  

previous title, Crimes on the Nile. It features Belgian detective Artemis Arinae on a cruise up the Nile with a collection of outrageous characters: an erotic novelist, a drunken captain, two feuding femme fatales, a German doctor, a clueless hunk, an embarrassed teenager, a Scottish guardian, an American steel magnate and a hapless first mate. Everyone except Arinae was played by just three actors. The four-strong cast conjure up hilarious set pieces along the way, including encounters with local wildlife and a camel race that has to be seen to be believed. But it’s not all fun and games on board the good ship Amun Re; one of their number is murdered, and all the guests and staff are suspects. Can Artemis Arinae work her little grey cells and catch the killer in time?   “We are so excited to be returning to the Merlin. We love putting on shows there, and not just because we get to walk home afterwards! Frome is such a vibrant and creative town, we are proud to be part of it. We really want to establish a solid base here in our home town, so hopefully everyone out there will buy tickets. There have been times over the last eighteen months when we genuinely didn’t know whether the company

Crimes in Egypt plays the Merlin (where New Old Friends is an Associate Company) on the 3rd and 4th September before heading out on a large national tour. The show had a sold-out three weeks for its premiere at Theatre Royal Bath’s Ustinov in 2019, before heading out on a hugely successful tour under its

would survive or if touring would be an option again, so we are thrilled to be kicking off an ambitious tour this autumn.” Heather Westwell, Artistic Producer of the company told us.

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Crimes in Egypt is the perfect way to get back to live performance; it is fun, fast, and full of witty wordplay and hilarious characters. The pandemic was devastating for so many, but particularly those working in the performance industry, with a series of postponements, cancellations and a general mood of uncertainty and existential dread pervading. But, after a few false starts, New Old Friends found a way to continue to connect with their audience by writing, performing and producing Comedy Whodunnits for your Ears, a podcast of hilarious murder mysteries that Heather and Feargus recorded in their spare bedroom during lockdown, and then had their sound wizard, Fred Riding, sprinkle on some music and sound magic. The series caught the attention of BBC Radio 4 and was featured on Front Row; it has won an OnComm award, and rose as high as 2 in the iTunes fiction charts, even ranking inside the Top 200 of all podcasts nationally. There are currently three series still available to listen to, with two more planned for autumn and Christmas, supported by Arts Council England. “We’re really proud of the podcast series, it allowed us to stay creative during a really rough time and we’re thrilled that people seem to enjoy it. But we have to be honest and say that live theatre is our true passion, particularly touring theatre. So we couldn’t be more excited to be presenting Crimes in Egypt this autumn, and it’s particularly great we’re starting it here in Frome,” said writer and producer Feargus Woods Dunlop.  

Crimes in Egypt is the perfect way to get back to live performance; it is fun, fast, and full of witty wordplay and hilarious characters. The Merlin has worked incredibly hard to ensure that all patrons feel safe and secure, with all appropriate measures in place. Book a ticket and give this great local company the send-off they deserve. Crimes in Egypt is on at Frome Merlin, 3rd and 4th September at 7.30pm, with a 2.30pm matinee on Saturday 4th. Tickets are available from merlintheatre.co.uk (Set Design by Connie Watson, Lights by George Seal)

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WE FEED THE WORLD a Calendar of Events Exploring the Future of Agriculture

Rewilding is an incredibly inspiring, large-scale and regenerative approach to restoring the diversity we have lost Joel Karpannen for We Feed the World

Agri-Rewilding - How Rewilding and Small-scale Agriculture can Thrive Thursday 9th September, 7pm – 9pm, light meal then talk and discussion. With Ben Goldsmith, Hal Rhoades, Tasha Stevens-Vallecillo and Seth Tabatznik

Photo credit: Jason Taylor

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o celebrate the We Feed the World photographic exhibition in Frome, The Gaia Foundation and Be the Earth will be collaborating with the Whittox Gallery, Gallery at the Station, Vallis Veg, 42 Acres, Frome Town Council and local producers to create an exciting programme of food and farming events, open to everyone.

Vallis Veg Site Tours Sundays: 1st, 15th, 22nd and 29th August, 10.30am by the information sign at the entrance to the market garden. Text 07870704299 to book a free place. Please note, strictly no driving on site – pedestrians only! (email camping@vallisveg.co.uk if you need to drive for health reasons).

Wild Nutrition Thursday 26th August, 5pm – 6.30pm, talk and discussion  Alex Laird, author of From Root to Stem will be in conversation with Tasha Stevens Vallecillo, production manager at 42 Acres just outside Frome.   Alex and Tasha will explore the importance of nutrientdense, wild and locally grown foods to our health and immunity, and how  we can incorporate  this greater diversity  into  our diets. With accompanying visuals, plants and produce, they will also consider ways in we can ensure locally diverse foods are shared equitably across society. Tickets £6, concession £5. 

A Small Farm Future - How we Feed the World and Nurture the Planet Thursday 2nd September, 7pm – 9pm, light meal then talk and discussion. With Chris Smaje, Robyn Minogue, James Turner and Peter Macfadyen Chris Smaje, author of A Small Farm Future and cofounder of Vallis Veg in Frome, will discuss the ways in which a small farm future can be realised in the UK and globally, and why it is a critical and urgent pathway to address our ecological crisis. Chris will be joined by Robyn Minogue from the Gaia Foundation’s Seed Sovereignty Programme, James Turner from communications organisation Glimpse and Peter Macfadyen, author of Flatpack Democracy. Join a lively and urgent conversation. Tickets £12 including food and a glass of wine. Concessions £10. Rise, Whittox Lane, BA11 3BY. Booking via www.thewhittoxgallery.com

Rewilding is an incredibly inspiring, large-scale and regenerative approach to restoring the diversity we have lost, but how do we ensure that our food production needs are also integrated and flourish? Ben Goldsmith, Somerset farmer and Chair of Rewilding Britain will be joined by Hal Rhoades from The Gaia Foundation and Tasha Stevens Vallecillo and Seth Tabatznik from 42 Acres, Somerset. Tickets £12 including food and a glass of wine/soft drink. Concessions £10. Rise, Whittox Lane, BA11 3BY. Book online: www.thewhittoxgallery.com

We Feed… Frome Friday 24th September, from 5pm As part of the Great Big Green Week meet the producers and food innovators working in and around Frome. Did you know you can support Frome’s local farmers by shopping online at the Frome Food Hub? Or that there’s a new waste project in town closing the composting loop? Meet the fine folk producing the most nutrientrich, delicious and diverse foods around, and enjoy the fare on offer plus live music and inspiring short talks. Rye Bakery, Hesperian Fish, Lungi Babas & 42 Acres Food Truck. In partnership with Gallery at the Station and Frome Town Council. Station Approach, BA11 1RE. It’s free, so just show up!

Rise, Whittox Lane, BA11 3BY. Booking via www.thewhittoxgallery.com Vallis Veg

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PURE Interiors with a Focus on Sustainability and Socio-Economic change

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ith an exciting take on the interiors industry, new kids on the block Pure are bringing their exciting new concept to Bruton High Street, opening on 31st July. Pure was set up in February 2020 by owners Lois and Robbi. They have a studio and warehouse in central Frome and a team of six bright and creative individuals all working hard to get the Pure concept off the ground. Having headed up a busy commercial interior design team in London pre-Covid, Lois recognised that due to the new digital age and everchanging attitudes about consumerism, that we have found ourselves in a situation whereby companies are under immense pressure to deliver to extremely tight deadlines, accept returns at a whim and produce constant streams of display one season after the next. The culmination of stock at extreme levels has been inevitable. This pressure on design companies and retailers to either carry the cost of storage, or invest in resources to process and sell this unwanted and unstandardised (sometimes unboxed) stock is an immense financial burden, when really they ought to be focussing on their main line of business. At the same time, knowing that many young, hard-working families struggle to afford high end or branded furniture, and being a stickler for resourcefulness, Lois felt it somewhat unjust to sit with the knowledge that, if the right solution could be found, this furniture would certainly be appreciated elsewhere, and would avoid furniture sitting in a warehouse burning holes in retailers’ pockets, or worse, being disposed of completely. So the Pure team, in their little studio in Frome, store, process and market end-of-line, ex-display or returned goods at 50% off the full retail price. They then share the revenue with the suppliers when sold, and anything not sold after 90 days is donated to charities, local community projects or anywhere that is in need in the local area. They even have a Head of Giving assigned to that very task.

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The whole operation is based in Somerset and they are fiercely passionate about serving the local community. Pure are completely exclusive to our area, in a 20 mile radius around Frome and Bruton, for deliveries and donations. Although their supplier network spans the whole of the UK, they prefer to connect with as many local businesses as possible. Even greater news is that not only are items 50% less than you would have paid new, they are often high end brands, good quality and stylish and, if not new, then as good as. Lois is very particular about the brands she works with, and being an established interior designer herself, she has impeccable knowledge of the industry. Part of the deal, though, is that when goods arrive (although they only work with brands they know and trust), it’s a complete surprise as to what they will get, and items always go fast. Pure tend to have deliveries every few months, so if you are renovating or perhaps an AirBnB host, and need a lot of items, it’s worth subscribing to their newsletter to keep up-to-date with goods that come in. The shop, in partnership with Smouk Interiors (who source handcrafted Moroccan goods directly from the makers), opens 31st July on Bruton High Street, where most of their goods will be available to view and buy.

For more information please check out www.pureinteriors.uk


RASPBERRY CURD seasonal Recipes from our resident Foodie Laura Coate

WHAT YOU’ll NEED to fill a couple of small jars’ worth:

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make curd a lot. (I blame Ballymaloe Cookery School.) Give me pretty much any fruit and I’ll work it into a sweet, eggy cream. Trials over the years have ranged from forgettable (poo-brown pomegranate) to incredibly successful (our household staple: banana curd). When we moved into our little Frome cottage seven years ago, we inherited some straggly raspberry canes at the bottom of our garden. Some autumns, we prune them right down, sometimes we don’t. We feed them in spring, but sadly despite our ministrations, they never yield vast numbers of fruits. Just enough to gobble a handful of berries a day. My parents, on the other hand, grow tonnes. So many that my Dad doesn’t even bother to net them anymore, as he just can’t give them away. I’ll greedily take as many as I can, so I can preserve them as jam, cordial and liqueur. Curd is a preserve with a relatively short shelf life and raspberries make for a delightful curd. Try this one on brioche toast or dolloped onto yoghurt for breakfast. Use it to sandwich a sponge cake for afternoon tea, or fold equal quantities of lightly sweetened cream (whisked to just hold its shape) into it and freeze in a lined loaf tin to make a raspberry semifreddo.

150g raspberries (the more ripe, the better) Juice of half a large lemon 50g butter 85g caster sugar 2 large eggs, plus an extra yolk Place the raspberries, lemon juice and sugar in a blender and whizz until liquidised. (Or, if you’d prefer less washing up, mash these ingredients together in a bowl, using a fork.) Dice the butter and tip into a heatproof bowl. Find a pan that will accommodate the bowl snugly to make a Bain Marie and add the raspberry mixture. Stir until the butter has melted and the sugar has dissolved. Whisk the eggs together very, very well and quickly stir into the liquid until completely blended. Cook, stirring, for about 8 to 10 minutes, until the curd is thick enough to coat a spoon (it will thicken more as it cools). For a seedless curd, push the mixture through a sieve and pot into sterilised jars. Once cool, keep the curd refrigerated and aim to devour within 5 days or so.

Follow Laura for updates and recipes: Instagram @foodwithfolk

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Fo o d w it h Fo l k

Gentle, effective, non-invasive, therapy for aches, pains, restricted movement, injuries, stress & many other problems.

Janie Godfrey - Frome Bowen Clinic 01373 452 422 www.bowenclinicfrome.com

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ARTISTS & MAKERS OF FROME WITH EMMA CHAPMAN

Has the pandemic affected the way you work and create? As for many, Lockdown was full of fits and starts as shops and cafés opened and closed. Each time everything opened, I was crazy busy. People scrolled and found me and used some of their furlough. People being at home meant they wanted their daily routine to be nicer, so the dinner services were popular. I didn’t have many shape dreams….my brain was a bit sad, I think. I did make a Boris and Co teaset….. which you can find on Instagram. It was a fuming response to, well, everything. Where do you work from? Tell us about your studio. I had a workshop built in my garden around 10 years ago. It is now rammed to the rafters, and bursting at the seams…..but I love it and it has been very good to me, my students and shape dreams.

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uch like her stunning pottery, Emma is a one-off. Here she talks dreaming in shapes, her love of hands, and her unique ‘tribute’ to our current government. What is your creative background? I grew up in a musical house, yet I never learnt to play any instruments. My father was driven by music and had taught himself from a young age to play piano, he was a single-minded workaholic with a constant need for the next project. Our lives were a mix of legendary musicians and cheap Sunday drives….and no sex/drugs/rock ‘n’ roll…. My mother was a beautiful, unrushed, ahead-of-her-time kinda woman. And she left too soon. She did stay long enough to steer me into art college, where I couldn’t get enough of the stuff to play with. I deeply resented narrowing down my options to specialise. I just wanted to do it all. What started you on your path to pottery? I remember when I was very small my mum used to take me to an outbuilding on a farm where she was learning pottery. The smell of the clay on the flagstone floor and the smell of the warmth from the kilns were both comforting and alien. I just love the smell of a workshop, working out what people were working with. My grandad made shoes, riding

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Artists of Frome

boots for the royal family, so stories go, and I would nervously hang around the door of his workshop. I never knew what he actually did until he died, but the machines and the smells in his workshop were just so exciting. What is your physical creative process? What materials and techniques do you use? So I’m a thrower mainly, relying on a piece of bespoke, crafted machinery, made for me over 20 years ago, and it has been my constant companion. I make lots and lots of pots (same same but different), I mostly work in high-fired stoneware to withstand regular use and have a long life. What inspires you and your creations? I’m inspired by how people hold things. Our first tools are our hands. I love to watch makers, painters, chefs, gardeners, and see how they use their hands. Everyone has their own language with their hands, it’s unique to them, and so pots will roll around differently in them. I love to watch how people hold my pots, where they feel they need to support it, which bits they’ll touch more, and how it sits with them. A regular but sometimes thing is that as I wake in the morning, a shape comes in, as I rouse; it’s like the post (of old) coming in, and I just have to make it. ASAP.

Where is your favourite place to be for artistic inspiration? I love the beach for inspiration, I see little pots everywhere, all those pebbles, all those soft shapes that we discover, every one being unique, every one deserving a hug as we spot it and roll it in our hands. What artists and makers inspire you, and why? I’m a bit all over Florian Gadsbyat the moment. He’s an incredible potter who did a mentorship in Japan, was educated at a Steiner school, and makes with such incredible beautiful and simple precision. He’s a prolific maker, doing everything himself, and I hugely admire his discipline and dedication. Check him out on Instagram.

makers vibe, and it felt pretty underground. It was out there but it came through slowly. Frome is now thoroughly throbbing with making and creative drivers, it feels incredibly, creatively healthy, and the makers and craftworkers are hugely respected and valued and cared for! What other artistic processes and disciplines would you like to work with? I love a basket and wood. I would love to learn more about weaving baskets. I just love a vessel, a carrying vessel. I will do this…. How can people see and buy your work? My work can be found at the Rye Bakery/Alfred’s bread, Donna Ashay, Lowlands Bristol, Objects of Use, Oxford. I can be found on Facebook and Instagram (@emmachapmanspottery ) and for the time being in my shed in my garden, looking out across the valley. Anything you want to add? A bigger space is heading my way, so I can stretch out, welcome you all back, and get teaching again. …..whatever changes you’ve made to your lives, for you, you’re doing the right thing. We’re all shifting and shuffling with you.

If you hadn’t become a potter, what would you have done? I absolutely cannot imagine what I would have done if I hadn’t found ‘my wave’. Every crap job I did I knew it wasn’t gonna happen and that the ‘real’ thing was coming. Although I did create a pottery department in a mental health unit once, I really loved that job and I really miss it! So, maybe working in mental health. How do you find the local creative and artistic community? When I first came to Frome around 15 years ago I was desperately searching around for a pottery vibe, a THE LIST FROME

Artists of Frome

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Gardening, For Dogs? Expert Advice by Trug & Lettuce

P

et ownership, and specifically dog ownership, has soared during lockdown. While those restrictions are now being eased, recent research tells us that, as people return to their places of work, 22% of those who have spent more time working from home than before the lockdown are now worried about how their pets will cope as they return to their workplace. We’re lucky – every day for us is a take-your-dog-towork day – but not everyone is as lucky as us, so we did some research about dogs and gardening, and found an article on line from the Battersea Dogs Home. It seems that dogs, like humans, get huge benefits from having a garden, and the staff at Battersea have created a dog-friendly sensory garden to make every dog’s stay with them as pleasant as possible.

It seems that dogs love herbs! If your dog is in need of a little pick-meup, they’ll enjoy sniffing and chewing on mint or lemon balm. They say that plain patches of grass aren’t the most exciting places for dogs and that, like us, they benefit greatly from enriching and stimulating natural environments. A bit of dog-friendly landscaping can help decrease boredom and encourage natural behaviours, so here are a few simple planting ideas for making your garden more attractive to your fourlegged friends. It seems that dogs love herbs! If your dog is in need of a little pick-me-up, they’ll enjoy sniffing and chewing on mint or lemon balm. In moderation, these are both said to aid your dog’s digestion too. They will enjoy the herbs more when planted in clumps, so avoiding mixing as you could send your dog into a sensory overload! Easy to grow, these plants will die back in winter, but they are invasive, so you may

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want to plant them in a sunken plant pot to keep them under control (avoid English Pennyroyal as it is toxic to dogs). Would you believe that dogs also like nepeta – or catmint? We used to have a couple of cats that would spend all day lazing around in the sun and nibbling our nepeta, and it seems that this member of the mint family is also popular with dogs.

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And finally, wheatgrass. This is super simple to grow and is packed full of nutrients. Does your dog get too energised? Then try calming them down with some strategically planted lavender and rosemary. Your dog will love sniffing these potent herbs, and their aromas will leave them feeling calm and contented. Their woody, robust structure makes them hard-wearing, so they’re perfect for dogs that like to zoom around the garden. On top of that, they grow all year round in poor soil and survive well in a drought. You will also benefit from their heady scent and all the beautiful insects they’ll attract to your garden.

it in seed trays during the winter and then plant in the ground in the summer, you can find wheatgrass seeds now and give it a go. All it needs is a nice bright spot in the garden. This month we’re going to make a couple of small planters out of an old pallet, line them with some membrane, add some peat-free compost and plant them up with a selection of these lovely herbs for our mutts to enjoy! So give it a go: Gardening for your furry friends.

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knickers to strimmers

Freedom to Learn...

Th e Fr o m e Fo s s i l

I

was sitting outside my beloved local. Beside me was my ageing bike, leaning against the table. Before me were a pint of dry, a packet of crisps and a pickled egg. The sun shone on the garden and the limestone walls and the trees stretching away across the camping field. A blackbird sang from a hedge top. All was simple and serene. I breathed a sigh of deep content. Then a bloke sidled over bearing a strimmer and, with an apologetic grin, fired it up.

ALL HALLOWS

Why here, of all the pubs in all the world, did the borders need strimming? The lawn was already shaved flat. What was so offensive about a few wisps of grass and docks around the edges? And why – even if they were offensive – was it necessary to bring out a large, deafening, fume-belching machine to obliterate them? For years, the loudest sound to be heard in this heavenly spot was the flapping of the old landlady’s outsize knickers on the washing line. In their place we now have the whining of tiny engines. For this is the new face of gardening. There is no job too piffling, no lawn too tiny, no branch too slender that they discourage folk from buying a loud and expensive machine to deal with them. A few dandelions in the wrong place? Strim ‘em. Want to prune the odd twig from your cherry? Plug in the mini-chainsaw. Suspicion of lichen on your decking? Blast it to hell with a power washer. Or (the ultimate calamity) a drift of fallen foliage on your patio? Time to crank up the leaf blower. Grouchy old fossils like me will point out that you could do all these things more quickly and cheaply with a pair of shears, a bowsaw and a rake. Or not at all.

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Fo s s i l o n F r o m e

It’s not too late...

. . . to apply for a place for September! We still have places available in some year groups.

Come and dis c ov er why our children are th riv in g and apply now to join us in the Autumn Term. And that’s the real point. Technology has seduced us into believing that we can defeat Nature: all we need are ever savager chemicals and heftier tools. This sad delusion has impoverished our farmland and devastated our wildlife. It has also turned gardeners into a tribe of neatness maniacs, their metaphorical breast pockets full of biros, their paperclips counted, their staplers polished. They fear anarchy. A strimmer is to them like an assault rifle in the hands of a Proud Boy. They forget that weeds can be beautiful, and long grass lush, and chaos joyful.

Just call Jackie on 01749 881609 for more information and to arrange your v is it Set in a stunning location in East Cranmore, just 15 minutes from Frome and Bruton, with minibus transport available, All Hallows is a day and boarding prep school for children aged 3 to 13. A creative and dynamic curriculum, with our pupils’ happiness and well-being at the heart of all decision-making, is producing outstanding results . Children are moving on to their senior schools, confident in who they are and ready to make the most of the opportunities that lie ahead.

w w w. a l l h a l l o w s s c h o o l . c o . u k


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