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Issue 75 December 2019 / January 2020

In this edition of The Sticks Interview with The Cast of Dunstable’s Peter Pan Russell Grant’s December and January Horoscopes Cheese Column Advice from Consensus HR Curwens Legal Column Art Column Panto Time Part 2 Big Barn Food Column Wine Column Plus pages of events listings across Herts, Beds & Bucks



Welcome to the December/January edition of The Sticks Magazine! The most talked about magazine in Herts, Beds & Bucks With over 16,000 readers a month

In this issue:

Interview with The Cast of Peter Pan HR Column from Consensus HR Curwens Column Russell Grant’s December Horoscopes Russell Grant’s January Horoscopes Attracting Abundance into our Lives Panto Time Part 2 Art Column Christmas Gift Ideas Cheese Column Big Barn Food Column Wine Column Listings – Herts, Beds & Bucks

Page 4-7 8-9 10 12-13 16-17 18 19-26 28-29 30-32 33 34-36 37-38 39-47

Contributors: Terry Sullivan, Sharon Struckman, Toby Archer, Russell Grant, Matthew Pinto – Chilcott, Marilyn Comparetto See you in February! Editor & Sales: Terry Sullivan Tel: 07756 274444 Email: Follow us on twitter @thesticks9 . Listen to The Sticks Radio Show at 8pm every Monday exclusively on SG1 Radio (Repeated on Wednesday at 6pm)


Peter Pan Interviews Peter Pan comes to the Grove Theatre, Dunstable this Christmas staring A J Pritchard (AJ) as Peter Pan, Richard David-Caine (RD) as Captain Hook, Will Kenning (WK) as Mrs Smee and Samantha Dorrance (SD) as Wendy. Terry Sullivan went along to meet the cast recently and asked them some Christmas questions

Terry - Can you remember how many pantomimes you have done? SD - This is my fourth year doing Wendy with Evolution (Dunstable’s panto producers) but I have been doing panto since I was nine years old and I am now twenty-seven so this will be my eighteenth I think RD - Five maybe this is the sixth one WK – This is my third year running at The Grove Theatre, which is great as I only live down the road, but this is my fourteenth panto. Terry - Do you remember your first one? SD - I do but it was not the first one but the second one I remember most. I did it with Paul (Hendy) who owns Evolution, he was Muddles, years and years ago, back when he was young. RD - The first one was an interesting one as it was a Christmas show not a panto, it was “Jack Frost’s Frozen Christmas”. It had panto elements to it but I think the first proper one was Aladdin the next year at Derby, in which I was one of the comedy policemen WK – The first year it was Bury St Edmunds and I was Little John and have played it two more times since. That year I worked with a great dame; a guy called James Dixon - he was a great inspiration to me. He was a superb dame, very much my style of comedy, dangerous and mad. AJ – I have never done panto before, so I am just so excited to throw myself into a new experience. When the opportunity came along to do the pantomime, to be able to do live performances, it is that thing that everybody looks forward to at 4

Christmas and to actually be on the stage, being Peter Pan and the bonus part was when they said would you like to do it, is you get to fly, I said if I get to fly I am doing it! I had my first go yesterday and it was so much fun, so much core work. The weirdest thing you have to visualise yourself treading water to turn and if you don’t do that you are facing the back of the auditorium and that could be a nightmare Terry - What do you think you will bring to your role this year? SD - Well me and my friend Jo, who plays Tinkerbelle, we have done a show together for the last four years and Paul sees us as a bit of a double act as we get on so well. Team morale is what we bring. RD - That’s an interesting question. It is going to involve a lot of physical comedy, something unique; probably an accent and you will never have seen a version of Hook like my version. WK – Well the big thing this year is that I will be playing opposite Richard’s Hook and he is a brilliant comic actor. We have got different comic styles - mine is slightly more bold, big and loud, where his is slightly more clever AJ – Well there has got to be some dancing in there, we have got the flying but more to the point that personality that cheeky chappy and I think we have to play on height because I am five foot seven and half and Captain Hook is a good six foot and Mrs Smee is six foot six inches. We are going to have some funny moments. Terry – Doing a panto is a busy time with two or more shows a day do you have a tip or routine you use to keep well? SD – Eating well, which is very difficult in panto, because everyone wants to go out in the evening, a few drinks after work but as long as you eat well and keep your spirits up. RD - It is a hardcore schedule so you certainly have to take care of yourself, you can’t go out boozing, I have to be in peak health, warm up, warm down and pace yourself. It has taken me a few years to learn that because opening night your like “Lets just show everything I have got” then ten shows in, you’re “I have nothing left to give” WK - I would say go to bed in good time and don’t eat junk food, which are two difficult things to do as it is Christmas, people want to go to parties, and they are away from home sometimes. Terry - What does panto mean to you? SD – I think Christmas really, for me it would not be Christmas without panto and I like the fact that on Christmas Eve I will drive through the night to get home and I will spend one day with my family, even though it is only one day you really 5

appreciate it. The family normally drive me back on Boxing Day and then come and see the show. WK – Family, I think it is such an important thing and in these times now, I think panto sales are up more than they have ever been. I think that homely security of something that is safe and solid, that is fun to everybody. Terry - What does Christmas mean to you? SD – Family and laughter RD - I love Christmas, well I used to before panto! Christmas is so magical you can feel the positivity and joy in the air, it is something we all share no matter what religion you are because I am Jewish, it is a time when the whole country unites. AJ – For most people it is spending time with your family, I know I am going to be working pretty much every single day over Christmas this time but my first show my parents will be here supporting me and probably my mum will be at most of the other shows, mum and I have just been to New York and my dad to Rome with me, I am very much a family person. Terry - What will you be doing this Christmas day? SD – Feet up with the family watching TV WK – I will be driving with my family, Christmas Eve to my parents’ home in Derbyshire then we will have a 24-hour Christmas and then come down to Dunstable on Boxing Day morning. AJ – Back with the family, I don’t know where, but I know we will be somewhere together Terry - What are you hoping for as a Christmas present this year? SD - I don’t know, the older I get the less I need, but the older I get the more I appreciate socks, never can have too many socks. RD - A day off, I don’t really know the people who love me know what to get me without me asking. I drop not so subtle hints through out the year as well. AJ – The Glitter Ball on the mantelpiece, three times in the semi finals maybe it is my year. Seriously I like food, so some chocolate. (This interview was done before AJ and Saffron were eliminated from Strictly). Terry - What is the best present you have ever received? SD – Don’t know, guess it was money. WK – It was a Super Nintendo when I was ten. The family said you will never, ever have a computer console and they surprised me. AJ - I usually buy myself a good present. I like shoes, and I always buy myself a pair of shoes at Christmas. 6

Terry - And what was the worst? SD – Oh my god this is so embarrassing, but one year I opened this present and my Mum had brought me one of those squatty potty things you put round the toilet. I don’t know why she had brought me it as I had no issues that way, I would have preferred money or socks!!! My Mum is a bit mental sometimes. WK – That was a bottle of mulled wine from Shelia Fergusson in Secret Santa. AJ - Probably not getting a present, if someone gets you a present they have put the thought in there, it is normally a practical something. Terry - What does 2020 have in store for you? SD – I don’t know as yet, but I have been writing a children’s project, which I am hoping to pitch to one of the children’s channels. It is sort of pop songs for children - with a twist. RD - A holiday in Japan and I am open to the universe bringing the opportunities and meetings and I will just be led by that. AJ – 2020 is going to be a fantastic year and we have lots planned. I think my most exciting thing is my own tour “AJ Live 2020” is bigger and better, more dancers, big LED screens, larger theatres; that is something I will be putting my heart and soul into in 2020. Terry - What is your favourite Christmas song? SD – I love Sleigh Ride by The Ronettes, makes me so happy. RD - I Wish It Could Be Christmas Everyday by Wizzard WK - Last Christmas by Wham AJ – Jingle Bells

See Peter Pan at the Grove Theatre Tuesday 10 December – Sunday 5 January Box Office: 01582 60 20 80 Book Online: 7

10 HR Tips for your Business over Christmas & New Year Ensure that your business is prepared for the HR challenges during the festive season. Workplace Christmas parties bring up issues of conduct and discrimination. For example, employees may misbehave, or employers may have to make adjustments to Christmas parties for employees of different religions. Holiday issues also commonly arise at this time. Annual leave requests can be concentrated around the same days, with employers’ plans to open their business during bank holidays often conflicting with employees’ personal plans. With Christmas approaching fast, we have ten tips which offer valuable advice for employers: 1 – Should employers prepare for the festive season? Managers should familiarise themselves with their employer’s policy on Christmas parties or work-related social events. Additionally, employers should consider the option of issuing a statement to employees in advance of a Christmas party or similar work-related event. This statement can remind employees of conduct matters, including the dangers of excess alcohol consumption, and behaviours that could be viewed as harassment. 2 – Do employers really need a policy on workplace social events? Yes. Employers should maintain a policy because they have a duty of care towards staff, and as a matter of good practice. The Equality Act 2010 makes employers liable for acts of discrimination, harassment and victimisation carried out by their employees in the course of employment, unless they can show that they took reasonable steps to prevent such acts. 3 – Is an employer responsible for what happens at a Christmas / New Year’s Eve Party? It is prudent to assume that an employer will be liable. Legislation refers to the term “in the course of employment”. 4 – Can employees be disciplined for misconduct after a Christmas Party? Yes, if the incident is sufficiently closely connected to work to have had an impact on the working situation. 5 - Is it okay to offer a free bar at a Christmas Party? A free bar will undoubtedly be a morale booster for staff, but employers need to be aware of the dangers of providing an unlimited free bar. 6 - Do Christmas festivities discriminate against those of other religions? It is unlikely that holding a Christmas party would in itself be seen as religious discrimination because generally these parties are more about having a staff gettogether and boosting morale than celebrating religion.


Employers should keep a policy on religious observance during working hours and be supportive towards employees whose religious festivals fall at different times of the year.

7 - Can an employee insist on taking holidays during the Christmas period? No. In the absence of an agreement to the contrary, workers must give notice equal to twice the length of the holiday that they wish to take. The employer can then give counter notice requiring that the leave not be taken, so long as this counter notice is equivalent to the length of the holiday requested, and the worker is not prevented from taking the leave to which he or she is entitled in that holiday year. Where an employee has accrued untaken leave and gives reasonable notice to the employer to take the leave, the employer must have valid business reasons for refusing the employee’s request to take leave. Where an employee insists on taking leave and does so without approval, the employer should approach the issue sensibly and be careful not to impose a disproportionate penalty on the employee. 8 - What if an employee comes to work late (or not at all) the day after the Christmas party? An employer can make deductions from employees’ pay if they turn up for work late the morning after the company Christmas party as long as the right to make deductions from wages for unauthorised absence is reserved in the employment contract. If disciplinary action is to be taken for lateness or non-attendance after the Christmas party, employers should ensure that staff are informed that this is a possibility in the disciplinary policy. Where an employee does not attend due to illness, the employer should follow its attendance management policy and procedures. 9 - Can employers compel their employees to work bank holidays? There is no statutory right to time off during bank holidays. This depends on the contractual arrangements regarding bank holiday working. Further, there is no statutory requirement to pay staff extra for bank holiday working, but employers should observe contractual terms or custom and practice regarding pay rates. 10 - What if a Christian employee refuses to work on Christmas bank holidays? Employers should be aware of their obligations under the Equality Act 2010, which protects workers against direct and indirect discrimination because of their religion. While employees do not have the explicit right to time off for religious observance, a refusal to grant Christian employees time off for any of the bank holidays with religious significance could amount to indirect religious discrimination. Employers that do not already have a policy on religious holidays should consider introducing one. Matthew from Consensus HR comments: “In our experience, Christmas brings a range of HR challenges that employers need to prepare for in order to avoid potential problems but should not mean everyone not having fun.” If you have any HR concerns, please do not hesitate to contact us and may we take this opportunity to wish everyone a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year 9


Will your life have the Pantomime happy ending? It’s that time of year when we spend time with family and loved ones and consider what New Year Resolutions we should make. A New Year means a New Start for many, which may involve taking that next step in a relationship and moving in with your partner. According to the Office of National Statistics the number of couples in the UK cohabiting is growing much faster than the number of couples choosing to marry or enter into a civil partnership. You may consider this to be irrelevant as there is no longer any stigma to cohabitating out of wedlock, or even having children without being married. However, many people still believe that once they have lived with their partner for a certain number of years or have children together they acquire rights to protect them if they ever separate from their partner. Sadly, there is no Fairy Godmother to wave her magic wand and offer “common law wife” status – it simply does not exist. If Cinderella had moved into Prince Charming’s castle without actually marrying him, her position could be very precarious if the relationship floundered. Unless the Prince had generously transferred the ownership of the castle into joint names with Cinderella she would have to leave her home and her lifestyle. She would not be entitled to claim for any maintenance from the Prince, or seek a share of his pensions, or demand that he provide for her reasonable needs. She would probably be entitled to take her gowns and jewellery with her, on the basis they were gifts to her from the Prince, and of course the glass slippers had been a gift from her Godmother. However, she would probably face having to move back in with the Ugly Sisters and her Wicked Stepmother. If the Prince and Cinderella had a child together, Cinderella’s position could be slightly better. The Prince would have an obligation to provide for the child, and as the main carer, Cinderella could benefit from that. So, the Child Maintenance Service would require the Prince to pay regular maintenance. Further, under Schedule 1, Children Act 1989 the court could order the Prince to provide accommodation for the child (and therefore Cinderella too) if he had the resources to do so – maybe a cottage in the grounds of the castle’s estate? However, in the long term that property would have to be returned to the Prince or passed on to the child when they became an adult. Cinderella would not be allowed to benefit from it. Of course, these are worst case scenarios if issues are argued out before a court. These situations can be easily avoided if couples enter into a Cohabitation Agreement when they decide to move in together. So don’t be a Pumpkin, and if you would like any more information on Cohabitation issues or any other area of family law please contact us: Curwens have offices in Royston, Hoddesdon and Enfield.



Russell Grant's Monthly Horoscopes December 2019 ARIES (March21st-April20th) Upsetting news about a community issue will arrive on the 12th, due to a stressful Full Moon. Government officials have been cutting deals behind the scenes. These negotiations will have a negative impact on the people living in your neighbourhood. It would be wise to band together and devise a plan for defying these orders. There is power in numbers. A Solar Eclipse on the 26th highlights your leadership ability. You'll be asked to take the helm of an influential organisation. Your ability to fundraise and organise will cultivate success. Don't be surprised if you become something of a local celebrity as a result of this role. People will be impressed with your ability to spin straw into gold. You also command a loyal following, thanks to your ability to deliver on promises. The end of December will find your sphere of influence expanding. When you talk, others will listen.

CANCER (June22nd-July23rd)

Troubling information will come to light on the 12th, due to a revelatory Full Moon. Someone who has been pretending to have expert knowledge will be exposed as a fraud. Let this be a lesson about putting your faith in others. When you are compelled by a charismatic figure, do some research into their background. You may discover their claims have no basis in reality. A Solar Eclipse on the 26th paves the way to an exciting relationship. Falling in love or forming a business alliance are distinct possibilities. You also might get engaged or married. Joining forces with someone else will have long term benefits. If you already have a romantic partner, they'll have wonderful career news. You might be accompanying your partner on a series of glamorous business trips. Seeing the world on an expense account will be the answer to a prayer. A special closeness will develop between you and your amour.

TAURUS (April21st-May21st) Payment for a job well done will be less than expected. An aggravating Full Moon on the 12th will trigger an angry exchange with a deceptive client or customer. If you loaned money to a friend, it will be difficult to be repaid. The person you helped will claim they were given this sum as a gift. Let this be a lesson about mixing friendship with finance. Combining the two is often disastrous. Things will start looking up on the 26th, when a Solar Eclipse invites you to expand your horizons. Going on an overseas trip, enrolling in an advanced academic programme or publishing a book are among the possibilities. It's also possible that you'll broadcast your ideas via a newspaper column, podcast or blog. Use the closing days of the year to build a reputation as a respected expert. Your services shouldn't come free, they have to be paid for, allowing you to travel in style.

LEO (July24th-August23rd) Things will be tense on the friendship front in mid-December. The Full Moon on the 12th will fuel tempers. Resist the temptation to respond to an obnoxious or offensive remark on social media. You may feel compelled to defend a group who is being attacked. Injecting yourself into this conversation will be like pouring gasoline on a smouldering fire. Maintain a tactful silence and let the verbally abusive person fall on their own sword. A Solar Eclipse on the 26th invites you to launch a health regimen. Overhauling your diet, exercise and sleep routine will enhance your natural good looks. You'll turn heads wherever you go at the end of December. If you've been looking for a job, you'll land a position at a prestigious company. This role will involve extensive travel. Staying at the world's most luxurious hotels will be just your cup of tea. You'll be travelling first class all the way.

GEMINI (May22nd-June21st) You'll be placed in an awkward position in the middle of December. Your boss may ask you to take the blame for their mistake on the 12th, when a Full Moon threatens to expose their ineptitude. It's better to walk away from a secure position than serve as a human shield. Tender your resignation or turn down a promotion. Being unemployed during the Christmas season is never a happy situation, but keep the faith. A Solar Eclipse on the 26th will reap handsome financial rewards. An inheritance, legal settlement or insurance refund will be unexpectedly rewarded to you. This windfall will greatly improve your lifestyle. Not only will you be able to cover your expenses, you'll be able to pay your debts and enjoy a few luxuries, too. This improved financial situation will take the pressure off an intimate relationship, paving the way for some passionate encounters at the end of 2019.

VIRGO (August24th-September23rd) A tense career situation will come to a head on the 12th, due to a powerful Full Moon. You may confront a rival who has been spreading lies about you. It's possible you'll employer will side with them instead of you. If this happens, stay calm. Don't quit in a huff. Begin looking for another professional opportunity. It's easier to find a position when you already have one. By the time the 26th arrives, the Solar Eclipse will reward your search. A position in a creative field will be offered to you. It will feel like you're getting paid a handsome salary for having


fun. The final days of 2019 will have a karmic quality to them. The Universe will reward your patience, perseverance and superior talent. Don't be surprised when your work turns you into a virtual love magnet. You're never as attractive as when you are practicing your art.

disruptive Full Moon. If you're not satisfied with a doctor's prognosis, get a second opinion. It may be necessary to see a specialist to pinpoint a problem. Be patient and do everything in your power to cultivate wellness. If this means avoiding sugar, fat and alcohol during the Christmas season, so be it. The Solar Eclipse on the 26th marks an exciting beginning for you. It's possible you will earn an advanced degree, move abroad or start your own company. You will have the Midas touch during the final days of December. A small investment will have a huge return. If you've been thinking of changing your look, do so now; you will be delighted with the results and it will boost your confidence. Ring in 2020 by forging a brand-new identity.

LIBRA (September24th-October23rd) On the 12th, you might experience a series of frustrating travel delays. The more flexible you are about this situation, the better. If your flight is overbooked, it would be wise to accept a seat on a plane that leaves the next day. Relaxing in a hotel room will be much better than waiting in an airport terminal, waiting for a flight that will ultimately be cancelled. Hold out for a good deal that will properly compensate your time and aggravation. Exciting changes to your household will occur on the 26th, thanks to an expansive Solar Eclipse. You might move to an affluent area or buy a luxury home. It's also possible that a youngster or maybe an elderly relative joins your household, cultivating a joyous atmosphere. If you've been trying to sell a piece of property, you'll do so for a handsome profit. There will be cause for celebration at the end of December.

AQUARIUS (January21st-February19th) A romance will hit a rocky patch in December. The Full Moon in the middle of the month could reveal something troubling about your partner's financial situation. If you discover your amour has been less than honest about their income or debts, tread carefully. The last thing you want is to be implicated in their deceptions. If you're asked to co-sign for a loan or make an expensive purchase on their behalf, refuse. You're treading on dangerous ground. On the 26th, a Solar Eclipse will trigger a spiritual breakthrough. You may decide to get rid of material excess, leading a stripped-down life. It's also possible you'll go on a pilgrimage. This journey will open your eyes to fresh possibilities and new ways of being. It's very possible you'll adopt a sacred practice or have a religious conversion in the final days of December. Feeling a deep connection with your Higher Power will ease anxieties that have dogged you for years.

SCORPIO (Oct24th-November22nd) An unexpected expense could strain your bank account on the 12th. That's when the Full Moon will shed light on a shortage. You might have to buy additional memory for your computer or increase your router bandwidth. Although making this outlay will make you unhappy, it is necessary. Having reliable equipment that meets your needs is critical to your success in mid-December. Things will be looking up on the 26th, when a Solar Eclipse brings happy news. A cherished relative will come to visit or you could publish a book. If you've always wanted to study with a prominent teacher, you'll have the chance to do so in the final days of 2019. Don't hesitate to sign up for this course, as spots will fill quickly. Working with an accomplished teacher will help you realise your own potential. Cracking the books will seem more like a blessing than a burden; you'll love this learning process.

PISCES (February20th-March20th) The Full Moon on the 12th will force a family confrontation. You've been turning a blind eye to a troubled relative's behaviour. It will be impossible to ignore these outbursts in mid-December. You will have to issue an ultimatum. Until your loved one gets treatment for an addiction or health affliction, you must withdraw your support. Friends will be supportive throughout the Christmas season. Spending the holiday with an affluent person you've known for years will be comforting. Be sure to pack a special outfit to wear at holiday parties. You'll make a great impression and meet someone special on the 26th, when a Solar Eclipse energises your social sector. Making an influential friend will open doors for you at the end of 2019. Who you know will be as important as what you know in the New Year. Whenever you need favours, ask for them. With the help of your companion, you'll realise a lifelong dream.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov23rd-December21st) A troubled relationship will reach the breaking point on the 12th. That's when the Full Moon will urge you to walk away from a manipulative friend, romantic partner or business associate. You once found their whimsical ways charming. Now you recognise their quirky behaviour as manipulative. Being constantly thrown off balance has stopped you from building a secure foundation. This relationship has also damaged some family ties. Take a deep breath and walk away from this union. A Solar Eclipse on the 26th will ease whatever heartache you've experienced. You'll be able to take a job or start a profitable business. Signing a contract with an international company will work out well for you. This agreement will relieve your financial burdens, paving the way to a luxurious and early retirement. If you run for political office, you will be victorious. The power and prestige of this position is considerable. Use this influence to benefit vulnerable people in your community. Call Russell Grant's Psychics & Mediums now on 0906 539 1526 (ÂŁ1.50p per min + phone access charge, 18+) or pay by Credit/Debit card on 0207 111 6162 Calls to 0906 cost ÂŁ1.50p per minute plus your phone providers access charge;18+ only. All calls are recorded for your protection & safety. This Entertainment service is regulated by PhonePayPlus and is provided by Russell Grant Astrology Ltd.

CAPRICORN (Dec22nd-January20th) A health problem will demand your attention on the 12th, due to a

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Russell Grant's Monthly Horoscopes January 2020

ARIES (March21st-April20th)

CANCER (June22nd-July23rd)

Working behind the scenes will be rewarding starting on the 6th. Take this opportunity to launch an important and confidential project. Your imagination will run wild if you can escape the attention of critics and cynics. This is also a good time to work with big bureaucracies like hospitals, universities and government agencies. Paperwork will be processed very quickly, especially if you treat officials with courtesy and consideration. A Lunar Eclipse on the 10th marks the end of a tense domestic situation. You may decide to relocate to a more tranquil and scenic setting. It's also possible you'll cut ties with a contentious relative. A pay rise, promotion or more responsible role is yours for the asking on the 13th; and an important ambition will be satisfied. The New Moon on the 24th warns against getting pulled into a group project filled with intransigent individuals. It will be better for you to go solo at the end of January.

A role will come to an end on the 10th, due to a jarring Lunar Eclipse. Although you'll mourn the passing of this phase, it's important to know there are even better things ahead. Make some exciting plans that reflect your heart's desire. An important alliance will improve your personal and professional prospects on the 13th. Lean on your romantic or business partner during the middle of the month; they can and will help you realise a cherished goal. If you're on your own, you'll meet someone special at a professional or creative conference. Don't hesitate to approach a successful achiever; you'll feel an immediate kinship. On the 24th, the New Moon will tempt you into making an expensive purchase with a credit card. Instead of driving yourself into debt, find ways of being more resourceful. You can live quite easily without this expensive product or service. Relieve yourself of financial pressure.

LEO (July24th-August23rd) TAURUS (April21st-May21st) An exciting job with generous benefits will be offered to you on the 7th. This will be a wonderful opportunity to get the marketable skills you need to move forward. Be willing to accept an entry level position; you'll quickly rise through the ranks of your new company. A Lunar Eclipse on the 10th brings an embarrassing secret to light. Instead of getting defensive about this revelation, you should admit your mistakes. People are forgiving when they sense someone is truly repentant. Adopting a change in the way you live your life near the 13th will yield impressive results. Be willing to give up health hazarding habits for the sake of renewed vitality. The New Moon on the 24th might tempt you into forming an unusual work partnership. It would be better to wait for a more reliable professional ally. Entering this union will force you to continually clean up someone else's messes. Don't be fooled by a charismatic person's overtures; leopards do not change their spots.

The Lunar Eclipse on the 10th will bring some surprising news about a community concern. This information will make you see a leader in a new and different light. It's important to remember that even the most admirable people can have feet of clay. The 11th allows you to move forward with a stalled selfimprovement project. You'll enjoy breaking free of a bad habit or limiting thought pattern. Be sure to attend as many parties and social gatherings as possible during the middle of January. You're sure to meet some stimulating and attractive people during this golden period. On the 24th, the New Moon will dangle a tantalising career opportunity before you. Instead of joining the corporate world, you may decide to remain a free agent. You don't want to get bogged down in a predictable job. Trust your intuition about work matters at the end of January; it won't let you down.

GEMINI (May22nd-June21st)

VIRGO (August24th-September23rd)

A business or romantic partnership is worth pursuing on the 3rd. Teaming up with someone who is adventurous, curious and light-hearted will be a source of great joy. Make your desire to work together known; playing hard to get could easily backfire. On the 10th, a Lunar Eclipse will bring an end to a source of income. This will be a blessing in disguise. Use this opportunity to find a job that is more emotionally rewarding than your previous position. An unusual opportunity to travel, study or write could come your way on the 16th; Take this chance to expand your horizons. The New Moon on the 24th warns against getting entangled in a legal battle. It's better to settle out of court than waste valuable time, money and energy on lawyers. Don't worry about what others will think of your withdrawing from this conflict. Stay focused on what you feel is best for you.

A flirtatious conversation on the 2nd could lead to an exciting romance. It feels wonderful to be with someone who shares your ambitions. By joining forces, you can build a prosperous life that is a continued source of pleasure. Are you already in a relationship? Book a luxury vacation for you and your amour at the beginning of January. On the 10th, a Lunar Eclipse will bring an end to a stressful situation. You're tired of walking on eggshells with an overly sensitive person. Parting ways will be sad, but liberating. The 16th could prompt you to interview for a new job or look for more work assignments. Your vision and tenacity will help you land a great professional opportunity. The New Moon on the 24th might tempt you to buy an expensive time-saving gadget. Wait another month before splashing out on this device, as it may not live up to expectations.


transformation on the 12th. Give yourself permission to abandon odious responsibilities and pursue your dream life. Don't take a financial risk on the 23rd; it will be better to keep your hard-earned money in the bank. You'll find ways to expand your income in February, when you'll attract an unusual business opportunity. The New Moon on the 24th warns against accepting a job that sounds too good to be true. The duties that were described will radically change after you move to this company. Hold out for a position at a reliable business that has a good reputation. Joining a start-up operation will be more trouble than it is worth.

LIBRA (September24th-October23rd) A Lunar Eclipse on the 10th could mark a power struggle with an overbearing employer. You may decide to leave your job or start your own company because of this conflict. Working from home would be a wonderful arrangement for you. If you need start-up money, apply to a lending institution or relative for a loan on the 13th. You'll get very generous terms for this deal. Use this money to create a congenial and convenient office space. When you have lots of comfortable space to work from, your productivity will soar. The New Moon on the 24th warns against getting carried away in romance. Making personal sacrifices for a troubled partner or love interest will backfire. Be ready to turn down a request for help or demand for money. This isn't selfish; it's sensible. Harsh criticism could come from a jealous relative or neighbour on the 27th. Take these negative remarks with a grain of salt.

SCORPIO November22nd)

AQUARIUS (Jan21st-February19th) A Lunar Eclipse on the 10th will prompt you to get treatment for a health concern. If you're not happy with a medical diagnosis, get a second opinion. You will work best with someone who is attentive to your concerns and adaptable to your suggestions. A stalled home improvement project will resume on the 11th, causing you to breathe a sigh of relief. You're eager for a wiring or plumbing project to be finished. Working from home is a distinct possibility starting on the 15th. If this arrangement appeals to you, talk to your boss. They may be open to your suggestion. Your charisma will be obvious on the 20th; take this opportunity to make a sales pitch, ask for a date, audition for a role or apply for a job. Beware of adopting a different look or role on the 24th, when a tense New Moon will cause confusion. A hasty decision will be cause for regret.


On the 10th, a Lunar Eclipse will bring a painful legal matter to a close. Although you might not be happy with the outcome, you will be relieved that the situation is over and done with. Give yourself a reward for having survived this challenge; you have earned it. An unusual person from your past could reappear on the 11th, creating excitement in your personal life. Together, you can collaborate on a creative project or maybe even embark on a passionate romance. A recommendation or reference from a powerful individual will improve your career prospects on the 13th. Never underestimate the importance of having great connections. On the 24th, the New Moon will tempt you to relocate. Don't break your lease or put your home on the market, as you will quickly have second thoughts when you see your options for a new place. Alternatively, you might find a lovely abode, only to have a seemingly ironclad contract fall apart at the last minute.

PISCES (February20th-March20th) The start of January is a good time for checking out the possibilities of changing your job. Although the competition will be stiff, you will emerge as a top contender if you emphasise your willingness to take advanced courses and travel extensively to land this position. A Lunar Eclipse on the 10th could cause you to draw a line under a creative project. The results will be less than satisfying. Instead of dwelling on your mistakes, treat them as learning opportunities. You'll do much better the next time around. Splash out on some fashionable clothes or a new hairstyle on the 13th, when you're sure to be delighted with your new look. The New Moon on the 24th warns against repeating privileged or confidential information. You don't want to get a reputation for being untrustworthy. Be practical and pragmatic about work responsibilities on the 27th; have a contingency fund ready just in case you meet with unexpected costs when working to budgets and deadlines.

SAGITTARIUS (Nov23rd-December21st) Becoming more active on the 3rd will give you a healthy glow. This is an ideal time to join a gym, hire a personal trainer or begin a fitness regimen. When you move your body, creative ideas will flow like a mighty river. On the 10th, a Lunar Eclipse will bring an emergency expense to your attention. You won't be able to avoid this big bill any longer. Do everything in your power to satisfy this debt as quickly as possible. If you want to buy or sell your home, the 15th presents an excellent opportunity to do so. You'll walk away from this deal in a much better financial position. The New Moon on the 24th is not a good time to buy an electronic gadget, computer or car. A last-minute sale may be a store or manufacturer's attempt to unload a faulty product. Save up for a quality model. Call Russell Grant's Psychics & Mediums now on 0906 539 1526 (ÂŁ1.50p per min + phone access charge, 18+) or pay by Credit/Debit card on 0207 111 6162 Calls to 0906 cost ÂŁ1.50p per minute plus your phone providers access charge;18+ only. All calls are recorded for your protection & safety. This Entertainment service is regulated by PhonePayPlus and is provided by Russell Grant Astrology Ltd.

CAPRICORN (Dec22nd-January20th) A business or romantic partnership will undergo a big transformation on the 10th, due to a stressful Lunar Eclipse. If this relationship is going to survive, some big changes must occur. A temporary or permanent separation is possible. You'll undergo an important personal

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Attracting Abundance into our Lives You’ve just been thinking about someone you’ve not had contact with for ages and astonishingly, they text you. Did you generate this? Some believe that you did. That we’re all connected in a universal web of consciousness. We are comfortable with a myriad expression that suggest that there is a cause and effect. ‘What goes around comes around’ and ‘you reap what you sow’. We’re all familiar with ‘Karma’. Many people believe that there are ‘universal laws’ which guide our experiences. The opportunities presented by the laws of attraction and abundance are rich and rewarding. You’ve probably seen them in action but brushed them off as a fluke. So, this is a reminder that we can harness this ‘energy’ and deliberately attract positive things into our lives rather than constantly firefighting or fearfully anticipating the negatives.

How does it work? Simply. Put it out there. This relates as much to people as it does to ‘things’. We are magnets. Our beliefs about ourselves, however generated, cause a spiral of activity which will create an energy that is you. Our presence in this world will vibrate with those thoughts and bring more of them back into our lives. What we focus on will be attracted into our life. So we need to take care when expressing ourselves. Ask, Believe, Receive. Be clear about what you want and ask for it using positive language, believe you are worthy of receiving it, indeed, act as if you’ve already got it notice when it manifests in your life and be thankful Surely if it’s that easy why isn’t everyone doing it? Perhaps we are but putting a misleading request out there for the universe to hear and return. We often think in negatives. Don’t be fooled into thinking that your negative thoughts or underlying beliefs don’t matter if you keep them to yourself. Your beliefs become thoughts, thoughts become words, become actions, habits, values and finally your destiny. Many of us are not so good at deciding what we want and asking for it. We’d rather it was bestowed on us because we ‘deserve’ it - rather like the best Christmas present ever. A complete surprise yet completely perfect. But as they say, life isn’t like that. You need to give it a chance. A few direct clues. Write them down. Tell friends about them. Imagine they’re in your life already. Prepare yourself to receive them. And prepare to be amazed! 18

Panto Time Part 2

Hop aboard the flying carpet and get ready to join us for this year’s wish-filled, family pantomime in Old Peking! It’s going to be a spectacular adventure (Oooh!) combined with a beautiful love story (Aaaah!) set against the wicked ambitions of a scary magician (Boo!). Joe Pasquale, the star of stage, screen, reality TV and blissfully funny comedy, will lead the cast in the role of Aladdin’s hapless brother, Wishee Washee. Joe is wellknown and best-loved for being one of the hardest-working and top-selling live comedians in British comedy today. He’s been delighting audiences for more than 20 years with his live stand-up tours and infectious sense of fun. Along the way he’s voiced characters for Hollywood movies, toured in several major theatrical productions including Mel Brooks’ The Producers, starred in the West End production of Spamalot (and brought the show to Milton Keynes) and has been crowned King of the Jungle in ITV’s I’m A Celebrity…Get Me out Of Here. Joe has appeared at five Royal Variety Performances and toured the UK in a live stage incarnation of the classic sitcom Some Mothers Do ‘Ave ‘Em in the iconic role of Frank Spencer. MKT panto audiences won’t know what’s hit them! Best-known for winning the BBC talent show Any Dream Will Do, Lee Mead plays our hero, Aladdin. Lee won the title role in the West End revival of Andrew LloydWebber’s Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat to rave reviews. Since then he has had lead roles in Wicked and Legally Blonde in the West End, released several solo albums and toured extensively. No stranger to pantomime, Lee has starred in six Qdos Entertainment pantomimes, including his star turn as Prince Charming in their critically acclaimed production of Cinderella at the London Palladium. Lee starred as Ben “Lofty” Chiltern in Casualty, being nominated for various national Best Newcomer television awards, a role he now reprises in the popular BBC spin-off series, Holby City. 19

There is nothing like a dame, as David Robbins, the fragrant Widow Twankey, well knows. David originally trained as a stage manager specialising in wardrobe and prop making and is also a trained puppeteer and director of the Dab Hand Puppet Company. He has worked as an actor in the West End, at Chichester Festival Theatre and on tour. But if it’s a real dame you need, look no further. David has appeared in outrageous frocks playing a whole assortment of dames, including Widow Twankey, in more pantomimes than you’ve had hot mince pies. David designs his own fabulous wardrobe of costumes and creates all his own wigs as, during the rest of the year when not actually donning a frock, he is a wig maker, making wigs for dames and productions up and down the country. Six months on, Tegan Bannister is making a very welcome return to Milton Keynes Theatre having played Èponine in the fabulous production of Les Misérables both here and in the West End. Since training at the Sylvia Young Theatre School and Urdang Academy, Tegan has also played Young Nala in The Lion King at The Lyceum in London and appeared as Leah in BBC 1’s Casualty. Tegan is polishing up her crown ready to play Princess Jasmine. Staged by Qdos Entertainment, the world’s biggest pantomime producer, and the company behind Milton Keynes Theatre’s annual pantomime since 2017, Aladdin will feature the MK hallmark of outstanding entertainment for theatregoers of all ages with laundry-loads of laughter, audience participation and festive magic. Emma Sullivan, Theatre Director at Milton Keynes Theatre said: “We’re thrilled to welcome the return of Qdos Entertainment to Milton Keynes Theatre following the roaring success of Robin Hood last year. We’re looking forward to seeing you all at this year’s magical pantomime adventure, Aladdin!” With further casting to be announced, audiences should hop aboard their flying carpets and point them towards the Milton Keynes Box Office to secure their seats for this year’s wish-filled family pantomime. Sat 7 Dec 2019 – Sun 12 Jan 2020 Box Office: 0844 871 7652

Beauty and the Beast Harpenden Public Halls 7-30th December Harpenden Public Halls and Polka Dot Pantomimes present a traditional family pantomime with a modern twist, a production that can be enjoyed by every generation. A panto wouldn’t be a panto without the traditional gags and audience participation but this show also mixes in modern music, high energy dance routines and, of course, lots of laughter. The show features real dogs, Belle’s best friends. These panto pooches are loved by the audience and create a real impact with adults and children alike.


Polka Dot Pantomimes works hard to bring magic to the story and, alongside some fantastic illusions, they’re particularly proud of the transformation scene where the Beast turns into the Prince. Producer Darren Maddison, said “This is a truly enchanting production, the audience will be amazed and delighted with the special effects we have in store. Once again we have sourced beautiful scenery and dazzling costumes, and have 24 local children who make up the all singing, all dancing chorus teams.” TOWIE star Ricky Rayment will play the devilishly handsome yet egotistical Gaston. Ricky is no stranger to pantomime and will be a very popular choice with Harpenden audiences. The cast is joined by Mark Two, a very experienced Dame who will keep everyone laughing as Dolly Doughnut and back by popular demand is Richard Marquiss playing French Franc. Kate Eason also makes a welcome return as the baddie - Grimalkin the evil witch. Every Polka Dot Pantomime is the perfect festive treat and Beauty and the Beast will build on the success of last year’s pantomime which received rave reviews. Beauty and the beast will run at Harpenden Public Halls from 7th to 30th December. Tickets can be purchased at or by calling the box office on 01582 767525.

CINDERELLA 6 Dec 2019 – 3 Jan 2020 A sparkling traditional pantomime based on the classic rags-to-riches fairytale, with fabulous live music, hilarious comedy, dazzling costumes and loads of audience participation. Join in the fun, songs and laughter and follow Cinderella’s magical story with her lovable friend Buttons, her nasty ugly sisters, a handsome prince, a pumpkin, a glass slipper, mice .....and, of course, a friendly Fairy Godmother! A perfect Christmas treat for all the family! The Radlett Centre 1 Aldenham Avenue Radlett WD7 8HL 21

Rhodes Arts Complex annual pantomime with producer Oliver Seadon & director Ian McFarlane

Sleeping Beauty 7 December 2019 to 5 January 2020 This Christmas, Rhodes Arts Complex will present the enchanting story of Sleeping Beauty as their first pantomime with a brand-new creative team. Families are invited to join Princess Bea this December on an amazing adventure as she battles the Wicked Fairy Midnight in pursuit of true love’s kiss. This spectacular show will bring a twist to the classic tale – a perfect modern take on the traditional love story. Packed with comedy, action, live music and a feisty heroine, this is a production that not only will captivate the whole family and bring festive cheer to all ages. This new, contemporary production of Sleeping Beauty is created by Ian McFarlane who has directed some of the biggest pantos in London and across the UK. Richard Jones choreographs the production, taking time away as Associate Choreographer from the West End production of Mary Poppins and international tour of Miss Saigon. Oliver Seadon produces this year’s pantomime in association with Rhodes, working alongside Artistic Programmer, Sue Scott Davison whose previous producing credits include the Olivier Award-winning Railway Children which ran for two hugely successful seasons in London. Oliver has worked on hit family shows including Potted Potter and CBeebies favourites In the Night Garden Live and Bing Live. Prior to this Oliver built a 1400-seat tented theatre for Cameron Mackintosh’s production of Barnum and managed West End shows including the Oliviernominated Eric and Little Ern and worked with Jerry Hall, June Brown and Kelly Brook on Calendar Girls at the Noel Coward Theatre. Oliver Seadon, the show’s producer said “We are so excited to be working with Rhodes this year on Sleeping Beauty. Pantomime is one of my absolute favourite things to produce. I’m putting together a fantastic creative team who work on shows all over the world and we want to make it the highlight of everyone’s Christmas. We’re going to pull out all the stops to give everyone in Bishop’s Stortford the best pantomime they’ve ever seen.” 22

Paula Holland, Operations Director at Rhodes adds, “We are thrilled to offer a fresh, new production that promises to be a magical panto to wow our audiences. It’s an exciting new chapter for our hugely popular annual pantomime” Ian McFarlane, the show’s director comments, “We’re looking forward to auditioning at Rhodes in June and meeting all the potential future stage stars of Bishop’s Stortford. The junior chorus is such an important part of any panto so we’ll be looking for the best singers and dancers to join our cast.” Book tickets online at or by calling 01279 701200. Tickets are on sale now.

Aladdin The Spotlight Theatre, Hoddesdon has announced an impressive all-star line-up for this year’s annual family pantomime, Aladdin. Britain’s Got Talent star Robert White will be driving the comedy as Aladdin’s loveable brother Wishee Washee, whilst X Factor singer Sam Callahan takes on the title role of cheeky hero Aladdin. They are joined by Ian Parkin from 4 Poofs and a Piano as the ultimate Dame, Widow Twankey, and completing the glittering star cast is national treasure Brian Blessed who will be lending his instantly recognisable timbre to voice the magical Genie of the Lamp. Comedian Robert White shot to fame on Britain’s Got Talent in 2018 winning over both the judges and the public alike. With his trademark wooly vests, the quirky comic impressed with his offbeat humour, impeccable timing and some fantastically rude songs about the famous judges, narrowly missing out to Lost Voice Guy in the closely fought final. As a high-profile performer with autism, his success has helped to dispel many popular misconceptions surrounding people with Asperger’s as being antisocial or total introverts. He recently brought his chaotic and hilarious musical stand-up show to the Spotlight Theatre as part of a 31-date tour throughout the UK receiving great critical and popular acclaim. Singer Sam Callahan grabbed the nation’s attention as a fresh-faced contestant on Series 10 of The X Factor back in 2013. Mentored by Louis Walsh, he reached a respectable 7th place in the hit TV competition using the experience as a platform to launch a successful music career. Recent years have seen Sam as a regular theatre performer touring the UK alongside fellow X Factor alumni Joe McElderry in Saturday Night at the Movies and most recently alongside The One and Only Chesney Hawkes in a new production of Godspell. Best known as one quarter of 4 Poofs And A Piano, Ian Parkin spent nine years as part of the beloved house band on the BAFTA and Comedy Award winning Friday 23

Night with Jonathan Ross show with the quartet still performing regularly to this day. A celebrated West End performer, his many credits include Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Joseph & the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, Jesus Christ Superstar and Annie to name but a few. With an already-impressive star cast, The Spotlight Theatre has pulled out all the stops and secured national treasure Brian Blessed to voice the Genie of the Lamp. Although the well-loved actor will not appear live on stage, his legendary and unmistakable booming voice will bring life to a spectacular 6-foot puppet granting Aladdin’s wishes as the mystical Genie. Pantomime Producer Paul Holman said: “Aladdin will be Hoddesdon’s starriest panto yet and I am delighted to have such a multi-talented array of popular performers under one roof. The audiences are in for a real treat this Christmas.” With a glittering all-star cast, sumptuous costumes and awe-inspiring scenery along with plenty of song, dance, laughter and traditional pantomime mayhem, mischief and plenty of opportunity for audience interaction, Aladdin is a not-to-be missed festive treat that all the family will enjoy. Aladdin runs from Friday 13th to Tuesday 31st December Tickets are on sale online at or call the Box Office on 01992 441 946. ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Peter Pan Don’t miss the fun-filled, family pantomime, Peter Pan starring AJ Pritchard (BBC’s Strictly Come Dancing), and back by popular demand, the hilarious Richard David-Caine (Horrible Histories, Swashbuckle). The show will also star Dunstable favourite Will Kenning and will be brought to you by Evolution, the same creative team behind the smash hit Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs returns to Grove Theatre With stunning costumes and scenery, superb special effects and a genuinely funny script by Paul Hendy, Peter Pan promises to be STRICTLY exceptional entertainment!

Tuesday 10 December 2019 – Sunday 5 January 2020 Box Office: 01582 60 20 80 (opt 2) Book Online: 24

The Snow Queen: A Frozen Fairytale

30th November until 1st January

Celebrate 10 years of Christmas-magic-making at Hertford Theatre with The Snow Queen. The story that inspired the smash-hit film Frozen is brought to life in an all-singing, all-dancing, all-snowing Christmas spectacular! Full of frosty frolics, nippy nonsense and chilly chuckles; this brand-new family Christmas show will warm the cockles of the coldest heart! Join Gerda on the icy adventure of a life-time as she scours The North for her missing best friend, Kai. But who is that frost-covered lad called Jack? Who’s the feisty girl in the red hoodie? And who on earth lives in that shoe?! But the biggest question of them all, as they come face to frosty-face: can Gerda thaw the icy clutches of The Snow Queen and rescue Kai? Brought to you by the same team that created last year’s smash-hit production of The Astonishing Adventures of Pinocchio; The Snow Queen will be kicking up a snow-storm this winter. Packed with heart-racing songs, foot-stomping dances and a sledge-run of fun; you’ll have snow problem keeping the temperature up this winter at Hertford Theatre! Our 10th Anniversary Christmas show; The Snow Queen will give you and your family that stunning white Christmas you’ve always dreamed of! Book now to avoid the avalanche! Box Office: 01992 531500


Peter Pan Watersmeet, Rickmansworth 11 December 2019 – 5 January 2020

EastEnders favourite, Todd Carty is ready to set sail to Watersmeet, Rickmansworth this Christmas and New Year as the villainous Captain Hook, leading the cast of Peter Pan, the venue’s swashbuckling pantomime for this year. Todd is known to many for his iconic TV roles including Tucker in BBC TV’s Grange Hill, playing the role for 5 years with the character becoming so loved that his own series, Tucker’s Luck, was created. Others will know him for his 12 years on BBC’s EastEnders as Mark Fowler and also for his time in ITV police drama The Bill, as PC Gabriel Kent. And who could forget his memorable time on Dancing on Ice and the following UK tour??? His recent stage credits include Detective Inspector Hallet in A Business of Murder (UK tour) and as Patsy in Spamalot in the West End and UK tour. Todd is no stranger to panto having played every baddie in the business! So get your boos and hisses ready as Todd take to the stage as the dastardy Captain Hook – will this baddie thwart the plans of hero Peter and his ‘awfully big adventure’??? Take to the skies with Peter, Wendy and Tinker Bell ... and test your sea-legs as we board Captain Hook's pirate ship and join his crazy crew in this swashbuckling pantomime adventure. From the team behind last year’s smash hit, Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, expect live music, colourful sets, amazing costumes, spectacular special effects and plenty of comedy, fun and laughter! Join us for a rip-roaring Rickmansworth family pantomime that will take you on a journey to Neverland and beyond Tickets are on sale now at or call the box office on 01923 711063



Art Column – Derek Howarth – Sculptor

As you approach ART @ MG – Mardleybury Gallery in Datchworth it is easy to see the two very large sculptures that have recently become landmarks outside of the gallery, as pictured below. These sculptures were created by Mr Derek Howarth and were originally exhibited within the University of Leicester’s botanical gardens. Both sculptures rotate on their stands - The White Lady, who’s shape has definitely been influenced by the great Henry Moore, is named ‘She’s got a ticket to ride’ after the Beatle’s famous song written in the ‘60’s. The second sculpture is called ‘The Curates Egg’ and tells the story around civilization. If you call into the gallery the owners will only be too pleased to give a full explanation of the meanings. But to tell you more about the sculptor himself …… Following the gain of a BA Hons in Sculpture, Derek Howarth started his career as a young artist by working alongside the great international sculptor Henry Moore. Making the most of this unique opportunity and absorbing as much knowledge as possible Derek soon developed his own skills in building large sculptural art. When Derek originally joined Henry Moore, traditionally only heavier materials were used to create the ‘masterpieces’. However, Derek had heard about a German artist who used only lighter weight material such as polystyrene and fibre glass, and so he took the brave step to introduce the idea to Henry. This put Derek in good stead as Henry soon felt the benefits from the new process and, as a consequence, continued to involve Derek in several large projects during the following years. Like all artists, the need to find a way to earn a living wage became of primary importance and so with this in mind Derek taught at the Norwich School of Art until 1967. It was after this period of teaching that Derek opened up his own professional studio/workshop creating threedimensional work for films, theatre, television, exhibitions, industry, shopping centres and public buildings. Applying his skills in developing techniques for building props and sets for theatre and films, and incorporating the use of lighter weight materials, it wasn’t long 28

before Derek was approached by the BBC to build sets for the iconic ‘pop-music’ programme ‘Top of the Pops’, and also the well-known series of Dr Who. In time Derek’s reputation for his good studio work found its way into the film industry, leading him to the opportunity to work alongside the great film director Stephen Spielberg. It was during this period that Derek created the sets for block buster films such as Indiana Jones and Star Wars, to name but a few. Amongst other exciting projects, Derek was also asked to create the Royal Coat of Arms for Caernarvon Castle for the investiture of the Prince of Wales - Prince Charles. However, outside of the ‘bread and butter’ of his career Derek still continued to pursue his own artistic breadth by creating unique sculptures that were clearly influenced both by his time with Henry Moore and the whole art and music scene during that era. To hear Derek speaking to Mairtin De Barra, BBC, about his life as a sculptor please see the following video..... To find the location of ART@MG-Mardleybury Gallery, opening times and more please visit: Marilyn Jane Comparetto FRSA To advertise your event, show, restaurant or business on our website or in our digital magazine Call 07756 274444 Or email Prices from £10 per month 29

Christmas Gift Ideas Festive Glow Enjoy the warming evening glow of a Lava Candle, more than just your ordinary pillar candle to have in the background – it’s the centerpiece of a room, decoration for your sideboard, console or dining table, in time for Christmas. Thanks to their iconic shape and fusion of colour in tones of rich reds and blues with accents of white provides a truly unique experience from start to finish. The Festive Collection comprises of two stunning fragrances ‘Spirit’ and ‘Nights’ each concept particularly developed to celebrate those special occasions. Available in three varying shapes, Moon (13.5cm X 9cm) and Star (14cm X 9cm) both with a burning time of up to 65 hours, as well as Cube (10cm X 10cm) with a burning time of up to 80 hours. There is certainly plenty of joy to be had from lighting the wick of one of these sophisticated candles, luxury by name, luxury by nature. Embrace the robust exuberance of the morning sun through the dynamic and intensely pleasing fragrances of the Spirit Candle. Boasting top notes of Pomegranate and Lime, with gradual underlying middle notes of Heliotrope Flower and Cinnamon, not to mention hidden notes of Tobacco and Vanilla. The Spirit Candle is currently available in shapes; Moon £71.00, Star £71.00 and Cube £82.00, to buy online from Amara. For more information visit Lava Moments. As night descends, starlight veils the desert sands as the moon traces the sleepy horizon. Brimming with quiet bliss, the Nights Candle is a poetic fragrance of traditional Arabian notes. Encapsulating the essence of a peaceful night tucked away from hustle and bustle of your working day. Top notes are that of Oranges, leading to middle notes of Rose and Nutmeg, progressing into bottom notes of Sandlewood and Oud. The Nights Candle is currently available in shapes; Moon £78.00, Star £78.00 and Cube £89.00, to buy online from Mid November at Amara. For more information visit Lava Moments. Established in 2016, Lava was born from the passion and vision of an Emirati born artisanal designer. Handcrafted and perfected to achieve distinctive detail and quality each and every candle is carved and hand painted to perfection in the heart of Ajman, United Arab Emirates. As you may notice from each of the candles distinct descriptions, Lava Candles are inspired by natural elements of Earth and the exquisite beauty of the deserts and seas surrounding the United Arab Emirates. Lava continues to develop outstanding fragrances and luxurious hand-made candles of the highest form. Each eye-catching candle just like the Festive Collection is created with love, care and a complete understanding of this age-old craft. For more information about all of Lava Candles extensive luxury candle collections visit Lava Moments 30

Be a Kitchen Pro with AnySharp

The Anysharp Pro is the world’s best knife sharpener. It turns blunt knives to like new, super sharp, slicing machines. Simply put the device onto any solid work top and pull the level so it’s suction sticks it firm. Grab a knife and gently pull it through the blades 2-3 times and within seconds and you’ll have sharp knives once again. The Anysharp Pro is used by many celebrity and professional chefs and is a staple in many homes. Save Knives and Reuse - Whether you’re slicing meat, dicing vegetables, or carving the Sunday Roast, a sharp blade makes cutting effortless. AnySharp Pro restores a super sharp cutting edge to blunt knife blades that have dulled with use.

The Anysharp Pro has a ten year warranty and available in a range of stunning colours so suit every style. The Anysharp Pro costs from £16.59 from Amazon -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Sorry, the pun literally made itself. Whether you like a storm (trooper) in a teacup, or a strong brew, this is the mug for you. Feel the full force of glorious tea, wherever you are. If you like your tea on the dark-side or a little milky way on the light-side this official licensed Star Wars Chewbacca mug is perfect for you daily dose of tea…. or coffee.


This cool concept is from the design guru’s Meta Merch and this sure fire collectable looks the part in any kitchen, in any galaxy. It’s a fact, Tea tastes better in a Star Wars mug. So whatever fancy tea your sipping, brew it in this intergalactic Chewbacca mug and the rest is history. The handle shaped like an arm is something else, stunning and unique. The hairy and furry Chewbacca is guaranteed to leave no hairs in your tea. Slurp if you must, but this mug is the best in the galaxy.

The Meta Merch Chewbacca Mug cost £9.99 from -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ABSOLUTION A brand new book by Local Author Adam Croft and his writing partner Steven Moore

Absolution, the first book in the brand new Sam Barker series is now out Sam Barker works in IT at the Home Office. All he wants is to get his work done and enjoy a quiet existence. But when he’s caught up in a terrorist attack on the London Underground, his life is turned upside down. As he lies recovering in his hospital bed, a shadowy figure visits him and tells Sam not only is he a key witness to the attack, but he has unique access to information which could blow open a huge conspiracy and bring down the British government. Will Sam risk everything he knows and loves to save his country?



The Perfect Festive Cheese Gifts and Board By Sharon Struckman

From delicious cheese hampers, cheese boxes and gift vouchers; The Cheese Plate has a fantastic range of gifts this festive season for the cheese lover in your life. Award winning Cheese Monger and international judge, Toby Archer also guides us to create a perfect festive cheese board. There is nothing more satisfying than ending your Christmas meal with a mouth-watering cheeseboard. Its welcome appearance at the end of a meal signals a time for appreciation, prolonged conversations and plenty of port! You want to create a cheeseboard that offers different styles, textures and flavours for your guests to enjoy. The classic combination of cheddar, stilton and brie has always been popular, as you’ve got a blue, a hard and a soft cheese. Colston Bassett Dairy stilton is a rich cream colour with blue veining spread throughout. The texture is smooth and creamy with a mellow flavour with no sharp acidic taste from the blue. Melt in the mouth perfection. Cheddar is a great, traditional English cheese, and the Cheddar Gorge Cheese Company’s Cave Matured is stored for a year in the heart of Cheddar Gorge creating a unique flavour and texture. The multi award winning Tunworth has a long-lasting sweet, nutty flavour and a creamy texture with a thin wrinkled rind. It’s made by hand with pasteurised whole cows’ milk in small batches in Hampshire Cheeses’ purpose-built creamery. Old Winchester from The Courtyard Dairy in North Yorkshire is a dry and hard cheese, reminiscent of young parmesan, with a distinctive nuttiness; This will add a punch to your board. Balance is the name of the game with a cheeseboard, so include something creamy and soft to act as a counterweight to the blue and hard cheeses. Goats cheese is a good option as more people are developing a palate for it. Serve your cheese with traditional accompaniments such as grapes and other fruit, nuts, jams and chutneys. You can also add some decadent additions such as pears in calvados or figs steeped in cognac. When putting so much thought and effort into your cheese selection, it’s best to use unflavoured crackers; you want to let the cheese do all the talking. To contact Toby for more information, go to or find them on social media. 33

Christmas Present Ideas and Goodies from BigBarn Christmas is getting close and loved ones need lovely presents. This can be very difficult so we have put together lots of ideas for you below. From Hampers, cheeses, coffee, herbal tea and all kinds of courses to natural products like soap or even a homemade hamper of your own.

Here are a few Christmas present ideas from our Marketplace where 560 producers and retailers on our Local food map have added products. Simply click to see more or buy. Christmas Food: What about giving traditional Christmas foods like a real free range, dry plucked, dry hung Turkey, goose, or a traditionally cured ham, artisan smoked salmon, or cheese, did you know we have more varieties than the French! Or cake, pudding, or luxury biscuits. You might spoil the surprise by having to warn the lucky recipient of what they are getting, in case they have already stocked up, but be extremely popular all the same. Natural soaps without dodgy additives: These producers avoid chemicals and focus on using quality ingredients, including natural essential oils fresh and dried fruits, flowers & herbs. Soap made in small batches and cut by hand. Natural soaps are great for anyone, especially those with sensitive skin, eczema, and all kinds of allergies.

Chilli Products There are lots of chilli addicts out there, or men trying to be macho? It is however high in vitamin C and a great way to add flavour to leftovers. Here are a selection of artisan chilli products, from sauces to jam, jelly, salsa, infused oils, vinegars, chocolate, powders, dried or fresh. Hampers Need a foodie present delivered to a friend, relative, or customer, or want to make sure there is some great food where you are going for Christmas? We have a great selection. From the tradition mixed hamper, to chocolate or meat, lots to choose from here. Coffee or Tea We have a huge range of coffees & teas from around the world. This is real coffee and tea from artisan producers not sweepings from the factory floor. And herbal teas for all kind’s of things; detox, de-stress, or re-energise. A brilliant present for a coffee or Tea snob’s stocking! Courses Whether you want to try something new or perfect your skill, we have lots of course providers for Cookery, (from capable to beginners ‘quick meals at University’) or, meat curing, sausage, jam, making. Fruit & nut trees Plant a tree with love, or to join the food industry in a few years, like apple juice, cider, figs, nectarines, nuts. 34

Beer, Wine & Cider We have hundreds of artisan brewers, some English wine makers, including fruit wines, and real cider makers around the UK, using whole apples instead of concentrate, sugar and water. All perfect for your Christmas celebrations. You can use our local food and drink map to find your local supplier or buy from those carefully selected for our MarketPlace for beer click here, or cider, here.

Artisan Gin, Sloe Gin, Cider, Brandy & Liqueurs For really good artisan gin or the warming tipple on a cold morning or long walk in the snow. We have some great artisan producers to choose from. Honey & Bee Products Beekeepers and makers of natural beeswax products, all over the UK. If you know someone who’s been busy in the garden or on the farm, they might appreciate a tin special bee’s wax balm to protect and nourish skin exposed to the elements. Kefir, the real probiotic Want to get healthy this Christmas and for the new year? Forget the silly probiotic drinks in the shops and try a powerful probiotic to make at home & increase immunity, and gut health. Olive Oil, & Local Rapeseed oils As there is a shortage of Olive oil so buy from the artisan producers selling real virgin, single estate, oil, or use your local, high omega, cold pressed, virgin, rapeseed oil. Cheese Did you know we have more varieties than the French? We have lots of artisan cheese producers in our MarketPlace, many making cheese using milk from their own cows. Cheese is a great asset for the Christmas feast or popular present for a cheese lover. Chocolate The way to most people’s heart. Go for something artisan and special to wow your loved one and friends. From Truffles to bars, drinking chocolate to brownies, we have a big selection of producers here. Posh Pies If you want to help take the pressure off the cook this Christmas or are worried your precious kids will not eat properly at University, or new flat, how about sending them off with some delicious ready meals. We have lots of producers to chose from so you may even find someone local. Spices and curry making mixes Supermarket prices for spices are very high for rather low grade, stale, spices in tiny jars. As a result, there are a number of artisan suppliers who have sourced and blended some delicious products. We have some brilliant spice suppliers and easy to use curry mixes that will give you better curry than the local restaurant. A great way to use 35

up the remains of the turkey! Or for real budding chefs get, or give, a regular Spice Pioneer Meal kit with easy to follow recipes. Alpaca socks & wool Get some lovely socks made from real, soft, Alpaca wool straight from the farm. Or for the growing number of knitters we have real wool from traditional, rare, breeds of sheep. Or for true luxury for when it gets cold, organic lamb skins direct from the farm and locally cured.

Preserves Leave out the bland brands full of added sugar and preservatives and try some real artisan producers using real local ingredients, including; chutneys, mustard, jams, honey, curds, jelly, sauces and piccalilli Artisan Pickled Eggs The perfect stocking filler for the lover of real pickled eggs. Made using free range eggs and carefully chosen spices and vinegars or choose the posh version with bite size quail eggs. For the big family gathering of pickled egg lovers go for a bucket this Christmas. Healthy Seaweed Seaweed is full of iodine and healthy minerals. Get your fix from a range of salts, sprinkles and sauces used in all kinds of dishes Hodmedods English Pulses Winners of this year’s BBC Food Programme awards Hodmedods have some amazing products and are helping us use English beans that are usually exported. from English baked beans, to pea flour for bread makers, to the amazing roasted peas and beans that are better than crisps, cheaper and more nutritious. Posh Drinks Driving this holiday, want to detox, or avoid the hangover? We have some alcohol free, delicious, drinks from apple juice producers, to posh pop, to alcohol free gin and tonic to the superfood Aronia Berry juice

Vouchers Can’t think of a present but want to give something special? Or get someone to try your favourite farm shop? Lots of vouchers here. If we don’t have a voucher for your favourite farm shop please call them. Slow Food Membership We have been involved with Slow Food for over 15 years and will be doing all sorts of projects with them this year. We highly recommend you check out your local convivium and join up or give a loved one membership here BigBarn Membership Every thought about getting an icon on the BigBarn map and joining your local food industry? Or have a friend who is a great cook, grower, or expert who could run some courses? You can join up, or give BigBarn membership here Or there are lots more in MarketPlace, and if looking for a discount you can browse other shops in the Discount code page and use code BB1 or for products on special offer of 20% off or more try our Deal of the Day page. 36

12 Wines of Christmas

12 Dolcettos Decanting DOLCETTO D'ALBA VILLA CASETTA 2014 £11.50 Ruby red colour with a delicately dry almond taste, there is a hint of red berry and herbs to be found in a dark berry expression. This wine preserves all the qualities of the grapes it is made from. 11 Champagnes’ Popping POL ROGER BRUT RESERVE CHAMPAGNE £42.00 A powerful and engaging nose with aromas of fruity (pear, mango) and floral (jasmine) with brioche and vanilla notes. In the palate the wine offers a beautiful harmony and a pleasant freshness while preserving a certain structure 10 Lords a Sipping 9 Cocktails Mixing 55 ABOVE LEMON GINO LIQUER 50CL £24.50 The folks behind 55 Above have created a limited-edition gin liqueur with a focus on the fantastic freshness of lemon! Expect a full-on citrus explosion, backed up by plenty of juniper goodness. Enjoy with sparkling wine and the skin of a lemon making this a very easy drinking cocktail. 8 Wines a Crushing 7 Sommeliers a Serving 6 Geese a Laying RETIEF GOOSEN THE GOOSE CABERNET SAUVIGNON 2014 £16.50 Well-balanced wine with ripe tannins and a long finish, has a brilliant purple colour with a sweet nose of blackberries and hints of cherry. 37

5 Local Gins COPPER IN THE CLOUDS ONE TIME GIN HERTFORDSHIRE DRY £39.50 Distilled in traditional copper pot stills using 100% British grain spirit and botanicals either foraged, farmed or sourced from within our county of Hertfordshire.

4 Colombards CAPRICE COLOMBELLE BLANC COTES GASCOGNE 2018 £9.50 Lifted apricot, peach and honeysuckle scents are followed by some citrus and spice. Fresh with a vibrant feel. 3 French Blends CHATEAU D'ARSAC MARGAUX BORDEAUX 2014 £24.50 Medium-bodied, forward and already open, it takes no effort to find the soft, tannins, ripe, red fruits and soft, polished, finish. You can drink this now for pleasure as this is not a wine for long term aging. 2 Laughing Magpies THE LAUGHING MAGPIE D'ARENBERG 2010 £21.50 Dark brooding fruit is dominant on the nose, accompanied by earth, spice and dried herbs. The palate is round and luscious with an attractive black olive and sage character that persists throughout. And a Portuguese Red for Me MESSIAS SELECTION DOURO RED 2013 £9.50 Messias Selection Douro has a very smooth and elegant complexity, where the good balance between the tannins and the fruits of this open and fruity wine stands out. It has a tight texture, ripe red fruits, and acidity.

CAVAVIN The Wine Shop 22 Maidenhead Street, Hertford, SG14 1DR Tel: 01992 558 311 Email:



Redbourn Christmas Market - Sun 1 Dec Visit the pretty and historic village of Redbourn and experience our annual winter festival, as we come together to celebrate. Redbourn High Street, Redbourn

Herts Listings St Ippolyts Church Nativity Crib Festival Sun 1 Dec Once again, we kick the festive season off to a start with our truly amazing Nativity Crib Festival. We will be filling the church with as many cribs as we can persuade people to lend us. St Ippolyts Church, Ashbrook Lane, St Ippolyts, Hitchin

Ashridge Estate - Meet the maker: Bramble and Blossom - Sun 1 Dec Meet Karen from Bramble and Blossom at the visitor centre. She’ll have plenty of her unique beauty favourites for you to try. Ashridge Estate, Moneybury Hill, Berkhamsted

Christmas Barns - Sun 1 Dec Festive family fun! Christmas Barns is a destination festive event located in a collection of rural barns on a farm near Hitchin and Stevenage. Lannock Farm, Hitchin

Ashridge Estate - The Nutcracker trail at Ashridge - Sun 1 Dec Follow our magical Nutcracker themed trail through the woods. In this retelling there’s wildlife aplenty - the perfect way to get you in the Christmas spirit. Ashridge Estate, Moneybury Hill, Berkhamsted

Visit Santa Clause’s Christmas Grotto - Sun 1, Sat 7, Sun 8, Sat 14, Sun 15, Fri 20 to Tue 24 Dec The festive season is officially upon us and The Galleria are thrilled that Santa will be parking up his sleigh at the Hatfield shopping centre. Unit 2 Comet Way, Hatfield

Christmas Market - Mon 2 Dec Our Christmas Market is back! Join us for an evening of festive shopping and fun, perfect for all the family! Hitchin Boys’ School Grammar School Walk Hitchin

Meldreth Christmas Tree Festival - Sun 1 Dec Our Festival will have over 30 trees, all beautifully decorated by local organisations, often with a theme relevant to their group activities Holy Trinity Church, North End, Meldreth

Willow Carol Concert - Tue 3 Dec Join Willow and kick start the festive period at the annual Willow Christmas Carol Concert celebrating the Charities 20th Anniversary. St Albans Cathedral Sumpter Yard

The Nutcracker trail at Ashridge - Sun 1, Sat 7, Sun 8, Sat 14, Sun 15, Sat 21, Sun 22, Thu 26 to Sun 29 Dec Follow our Christmas trail for a woodland retelling of the Nutcracker. Answer all the questions along the way to receive a Christmas present at the end. Ashridge Estate Visitor Centre, Moneybury Hill, Ringshall, Berkhamsted

North Herts Association of National Trust The Inception of the London Underground Weds 4 Dec 7.30 pm. Tony Earle will talk about its life from original steam power in smoke filled tunnels, through reminiscences of the 1950’s, up to modern times. Rounded off with a light-hearted quiz. £2 on the door for both members and visitors, which includes mince pie and non-alcoholic punch. Membership of National Trust not necessary. During the winter and spring, meetings are held at Christchurch, Bedford Road, Hitchin

Digswell Arts Trust Winter Open Studios 2019 - Sun 1 Dec Come and meet the artists and buy some art! Come and meet Hertfordshire’s professional artists at Digswell Arts Trust Winter Open Studios, The Forge, Hertford Road, Digswell, Welwyn Garden City

Quiz Evening - Wed 4 Dec The BCS Herts committee is throwing a quiz evening at the University of Hertfordshire’s Style Bar. Join our free quiz evening, featuring a mix of general knowledge and computing based questions. Style Bar, The Forum, College Lane, University of Hertfordshire, Hatfield

Ashridge Estate - Exhibition: Nature Detectives - Sun 1 Dec Come along to our exhibition about citizen science and wildlife surveying, before heading out onto the estate and having a go yourself. Ashridge Estate, Moneybury Hill, Berkhamsted

Tedesca Quartet - Wed 4 Dec Haydn: String Quartet in B minor Op 64 No 2. Bartók: String Quartet No 4. Beethoven: String Quartet No 8 in E minor Op 59 No 2. Benslow Music Trust, Ibberson Way, Hitchin

St Albans Antique and Vintage Market - Sun 1 Dec Along side the visitors, shoppers, tourists, the brand-new museum and gallery, the ancient Cathedral and clock tower, some very special pubs, the stunning architecture, old cobbled streets. St Peters Street, St Albans

National Trust Watford and District Association - Thu 5 Dec Speaker: Vic Botterill. A Christmas cracker. An illustrated presentation of seasonal legends, funny 39

stories and conundrums - a real Christmas winner he says! Stanborough Centre, 609 St Albans Road, Garston, Watford

Star in a Jar - Sat 7 Dec From Star in the Jar by Sam Hay. The Old Town Hall High Street Hemel Hempstead

Hitchin Christmas Tree Festival Preview and Concert - Fri 6 Dec A concert of seasonal music performed among the 50 decorated trees of the Hitchin Christmas Tree Festival by Holy Saviour Church Choir, The Radcliffe Singers and friends, directed by Trevor Hughes. Holy Saviour Church, Radcliffe Rd, Hitchin

Chipperfield Choral Society Christmas Concert - The Road to Bethlehem - Sat 7 Dec Musical Director Delia Meehan always finds a wonderful selection of carols and other songs for the choir to sing and it is quite magical to hear this beautiful music soar up into the atmosphere of St Chipperfield - St Paul’s Church, The Common, Chipperfield

Julie Felix - Fri 6 Dec Julie’s current tour is a celebration of over 50 years as a singer songwriter and her belief in the power of music to enhance people’s lives and bring about change. Level 2, The Maltings, St Albans

Ashridge Estate - Santa Paws walk - Sun 8 Dec Bring your dog and join Father Christmas on a walk around the meadow. Put on a Christmas hat and hang a bauble from your pet’s lead for this fun, festive walk. Ashridge Estate, Moneybury Hill, Berkhamsted

Christmas Fair - Sat 7 Dec Come and join us at our popular annual Christmas Fair - free entry Santa’s Grotto, lots of fabulous stalls selling items perfect for Christmas presents’ stocking fillers. Crafts / food stalls. Oval Community Centre, Vardon Rd, Stevenage.

Santa’s Grotto at Shepreth Wildlife Park Sun 8 to Tue 24 Dec Meet Santa! Experience includes a personal greeting from Santa, Christmas gift and entrance into the wildlife park. Proceeds in aid of the SWCC Hedgehog Hospital. Shepreth Wildlife Park, Station Road, Shepreth

Christmas Tree Festival - Sat 7 and Sun 8 Dec Now in it’s 22nd year, our wonderful Christmas Tree Festival raises funds for St Francis and the 1st Welwyn Garden City Scout Group. Church Rd, Welwyn Garden City

Christingle - Sun 8 Dec The Christingle service uses a special symbol, a decorated orange, to explore the story of God’s love for the world at Christmas. St Albans Cathedral, Sumpter Yard

The Hertfordshire Big Band Presents A Disney Christmas - Sat 7 Dec Having been a popular seasonal event in the Welwyn area for nearly a decade this year’s Christmas concert will be held at the Maltings Arts Theatre St Albans, a well known and intimate jazz. Maltings Arts Theatre Level 2, Maltings Shopping Centre, 28 Victoria St, St Albans

Ashridge Estate - Meet the maker: Hertswood - Sun 8 Dec Hertswood is Jonah Maddox, some sharp tools, some cut hands, and a small shed in Berkhamsted, Herts. Come to the visitor centre to meet him and see his creations. Ashridge Estate, Moneybury Hill, Berkhamsted

A Charity Christmas Concert in Support of MENCAP Harpenden - Sat 7 Dec Join us for some festive cheer, carol singing and mince pies!! The Music Makers Choir of Harpenden are joined by Aldwickbury School Choir. Methodist Church, High Street, Harpenden

A Taste of Christmas - Sun 8 Dec Following on from the success of last years joint concert we are once again joining forces with the Hemel Hempstead Brass Band to bring you a programme of festive songs and music. Thomas Alleyne Academy, High Street, Stevenage

Christmas Cheer with Knebworth Community Chorus - Sat 7 Dec Knebworth Community Chorus present their traditional Christmas concert together with young singers and players from the village and from Digswell. Knebworth Village Hall

Santa Paws Walk - Sun 8 Dec Bring your dog for a festive walk with Father Christmas around the meadow. Ashridge Estate Visitor Centre, Moneybury Hill, Ringshall, Berkhamsted

Christmas Craft Fair - Sat 7 Dec With over 20 stalls of locally handmade gifts. Including sewing, knitting, cards, jewellery, art, ceramics, bottle lights, glass and much more. Kings Langley Community Centre, The Nap, Kings Langley

Monday Afternoon Concert - Mon 9 Dec Abby Bowen (viola). All audience members are invited to join us in the Main House for a home-made tea after the concert, included in the admission price. Benslow Music Trust, Ibberson Way, Hitchin


Bears, Birds and Whales – Richard Pople Wed 11 Dec Illustrated talk organised by Watford Local RSPB Group. Travels from Vancouver to Alaska to Vancouver Island in search of black & grizzly bears and humpback whales, finding exceptional new birds. Stanborough Centre, 609, St Albans Rd, Watford

School Choir. All Saints’ Church, Queens Road, Hertford Christmas Concert - Sat 14 Dec Christmas Concert by award winning ladies choir Caritas Harmony singing a selection of well know Christmas carols and songs, and some composed especially for choirs. St Lawrence Church, High Street, Abbots Langley

Christmas Carol Concert - Wed 11 Dec Come along to a Christmas Carol Concert in aid of Rennie Grove Hospice Care. Enjoy an evening of festive music from The Kings of Herts choir and The Amici Singers. St Peter’s Church, St Peters Street, St Albans

Ashridge Estate - Meet the Maker: Auberge Du Chocolat - Sun 15 Dec Join the chocolatiers from Auberge du Chocolat, based in Chesham, to sample and talk about their delicious products. Ashridge Estate, Moneybury Hill, Berkhamsted

Knit & Natter at Hertford Museum - Thu 12 Dec Whether you’re a seasoned knitter or just a beginner, bring your projects along to Hertford Museum. This is a chance to share ideas and patterns in a comfortable setting over a cup of tea or coffee. Hertford Museum, 18 Bull Plain, Hertford

Carols on the Hour - Sat 21 Dec Join us for one of the Cathedral’s most popular festive events and enjoy one of our bite sized carol services. St Albans Cathedral, Sumpter Yard The Big Community Nativity - Tue 24 Dec Join us for a special retelling of the Christmas story with a twist at this popular and lively service with a visit to the crib and plenty of carol singing. St Albans Cathedral, Sumpter Yard

Chipperfield Choral Society Carol Concert in aid of Cancer Research UK - Thu 12 Dec Chipperfield Choral Society concert in celebration of Christmas, including some carols for all to sing Proceeds in aid of Cancer Research UK followed by mince pies and mulled wine in the Junction. Christ Church, The Common, Chorleywood, Rickmansworth

Carols on Boxing Day - Thu 26 Dec Drop in and enjoy this short, informal carol service with a visit to the crib if you’re in the area this Boxing Day afternoon. St Albans Cathedral, Sumpter Yard

Christmas Tree Festival - Fri 13 to Mon 16 Dec Over 40 Christmas trees, lit and decorated will be on display in the church, with different interpretations of the theme of The Music of Christmas. St John’s Church, Station Road, Boxmoor, Hemel Hempstead

Post-Christmas Walk - Fri 27 Dec Enjoy a scenic post-Christmas walk through the estate. A gentle, scenic guided walk through the estate to see Ashridge in all its wintry beauty. Ashridge Estate, Moneybury Hill, Berkhamsted

Christmas Carol Concerts - St Albans Bach Choir - Sat 14 Dec Two concerts of Christmas music performed by St Albans Bach choir, 3pm and 7pm. The 3pm concert is more suited towards Families and young children, featuring traditional Christmas Carols St Albans Cathedral, Sumpter Yard

Beds Listings Dress The Christmas Tree - Sun 1 Dec We will be decorating our Christmas Tree at The Eco Lodges and we will have a variety of crafts for children (and adults) to make different decorations and hang on the tree. Clophill Eco Lodges, Old Church Path, Clophill

Christmas Concert - Sat 14 Dec Come and join us as we celebrate the Christmas season with a beautiful and varied programme of orchestral and choral music in a fine church in the town centre. St Francis Church, Church Road, Welwyn Garden City

Festive Afternoon Tea - Sun 1, Sun 8, Sun 15 Dec Shuttleworth invites you to enjoy our Festive Afternoon Tea in the magnificent setting of The House, a Grade II Jacobean style home built in 1872 sits, in a 5000-acre estate. The House at Shuttleworth, Old Warden Park

Aladdin (PG) - Sat 14 Dec A kind-hearted street urchin Aladdin (Mena Massoud) vies for the love of the beautiful princess Jasmine (Naomi Scott). The Old Town Hall High Street Hemel Hempstead

Made in Bedford’s Christmas Artisan Fair 2019 - Sun 1 Dec The twice yearly Made in Bedford Artisan Fairs are Bedfordshire’s largest arts, crafts and produce fairs. Bedford Corn Exchange

Christmas Time! - Sat 14 Dec Come and kick off your Christmas festivities with Hertford Choral Society and the Hertford St Andrew 41

An evening with Mainline Big Band - Sun 1 Dec Come along and enjoy the sounds of swing with Mainline Big Band. Join in and dance. Kempston Hammers Sports and Social Club, 134 High Street, Kempston

time for TADS to fly off to Neverland for this year’s family pantomime, Peter Pan. Tads Theatre, Conger Lane, Toddington Stockwood: Illuminated - Fri 6 to Sun 8, Fri 13 to Sun 15, Fri 20 to Sun 22 , Fri 27 to Sun 29 Dec This December, we invite you to join us for festive celebrations set against the backdrop of the beautiful gardens at Stockwood Discovery Centre. Stockwood Discovery Centre, London Road, Luton

Father Christmas visits Wardown House Sun 1, Sun 8, Sun 15, Sun 22 Dec Join us for a real festive treat at Wardown, with a special visit from Mother and Father Christmas. Curl up with Mother Christmas for a special story in the library before joining Father Christmas. Wardown House, Museum and Gallery

A Christmas Carol - Fri 6, Sat 7, Thu 12, Fri 13, Thu 19 to Sat 21 Dec Hear Dickens bring the tale of Ebenezer Scrooge to life, who on Christmas Eve receives an unexpected visit from his long-dead business partner, Jacob Marley. Wardown House, Museum and Gallery

Christmas Fair - Sun 1 Dec Friendly, experienced advice on choosing the best binoculars, telescopes and accessories to suit your needs. The Lodge, Potton Road, Sandy

Christmas Casino Party Nights - Fri 6, Fri 13, Fri 20 Dec This Christmas try something different with our Christmas Casino Party Nights in the magnificent setting of The House, Shuttleworth, Old Warden Park, Biggleswade

Tempsford Museum and Archives - Sun 1 Dec This Months Exhibition - The Stuart Family of Tempsford Hall - On show will be a wealth of 19th and 20th Century Photographs, Papers and Ephemera, relating to this once Old Bedfordshire Aristocratic Family. Stuart Memorial Hall, Church Street, Tempsford

St Mary’s Mediaeval Yuletide Banquet - Fri 6 Dec As the final event of St Mary’s 800th Anniversary celebrations we are holding a Mediaeval Yuletide Banquet with good food and drink plus magic, sketches, music. St Mary’s Church, Eaton Bray

Music@St Mary’s - Handel’s Messiah + Rutter’s Magnificat - Sun 1 Dec Handel’s Messiah plus Rutter’s Magnificat performed by The Linsdale Singers with soloists: Min-Min Peaker - Soprano, Clare Watson – Alto. St Mary’s Church, High Street, Eaton Bray

Santa’s Grotto & Festivities - Sat 7, Sun 8, Sat 14, Sun 15 Dec Visit Santa this Christmas within the Swiss Garden! Follow a festive trail around the Garden leading to the Swiss Cottage where you will find Santa and his elves. Shuttleworth

Luton Music Club - Consone Quartet - Mon 2 Dec Recently appointed to BBC Radio 3’s New Generation Artists scheme, this emerging quartet is setting new standards of excellence. St Augustine’s Church, 215 Icknield Way, Luton

Breakfast with Santa - Sat 7, Sun 8, Sat 14, Sun 15, Sat 21 to Mon 23 Dec Come and meet Santa at breakfast as he prepares for the festive season. Adults and children alike can enjoy one of the most important meals of the day with Father Christmas himself! Dunstable Downs - Chiltern Gateway Centre

BIG Gospel Choir: A Gospel Celebration Wed 4 Dec Enjoy a special Christmas Gospel Celebration with a heart-warming mix of Gospel, Soul, Folk, Pop and more! Luton Library Theatre, Luton Central Library, St George’s Square, Luton

All Saints Church Christmas Bazaar and Market - Sat 7 Dec A fun event offering a raffle, artisan cheeses, cake stall, preserves, arts and crafts, handmade Christmas cards and decorations, tombola, 50/50 sale of quality clothes, jewellery and handbags as well. Village Hall, High Street, Turvey

Utter! Abandon - Thu 5 Dec UTTER! Spoken Word supported and co-produced by The Culture Trust present an Utterly Seasonal Celebration Join Utter! for the creative office party. Hat Factory Arts Centre, 65-67 Bute Street, Luton Bedfordshire Archives on tour - Plays & Pastimes, Leisure in Luton - Thu 5 Dec Drop in to talk to one of the archivists from Bedfordshire Archives about what we do, what we have or your own research. Luton Central Library, St George’s Square, Luton

Festive Afternoon Tea - Sat 7, Sun 8, Sat 14, Sun 15, Sat 21 to Mon 23 Dec If you can’t make it for breakfast, you will enjoy a festive themed afternoon tea at the View Café. The Chilterns Gateway Centre will be specially decorated for the festive season. Dunstable Downs - Chiltern Gateway Centre

Peter Pan - Fri 6 to Sun 8, Fri 13, Sat 14 Dec Well, another year has flown by and it is 42

Upfront Comedy - Sat 7 Dec An evening of belly laughs from the UK’s most enterprising comedy promoters. Upfront Comedy returns with an evening of high-class comedy. Luton Library Theatre, Luton Central Library, St George’s Square, Luton

craft. Hat Factory Arts Centre, 65-67 Bute Street, Luton Heresy (Goth Club Night) - Sat 21 Dec A brand new Goth club night with live bands performing in the Hat Factory Basement Bar. Hat Factory Arts Centre, 65-67 Bute Street, Luton

Wreath Making Workshop - Sat 7, Sun 8, Sat 14, Sun 15 Dec Join us this year at Shuttleworth to create your own Christmas Wreath handmade by you. Get festive, learn a new skill and create a beautiful Christmas wreath to dress your door this festive season. The Swiss Garden, Old Warden

Dunstable Downs and the Whipsnade Estate - Boxing Day guided walk - Thu 26 Dec Work off the excesses of Christmas Day with a brisk walk on the Downs. Join one of our knowledgeable rangers for this bracing walk on the Downs to enjoy the stunning views over Aylesbury Vale. Dunstable Downs and the Whipsnade Estate, Dunstable Road, Whipsnade

Warden Abbey Vineyard Christmas Wine Sale - Sun 8 Dec Festive fizz from your local community vineyard! Local foods and crafts too. We’ll be launching our new wines from the 2018 vintage. The Mansion at Shuttleworth (Garden Suite), Old Warden Park, Old Warden

Engineering Open Workshop - Fri 27 and Sat 28 Dec Get behind the scenes at The Shuttleworth Collection with our engineers and volunteers. See first-hand what it takes to keep these vintage aircraft, vehicles, and heritage machinery working. Shuttleworth

Luton Music Club -Arcis Saxophone Quartet - Mon 9 Dec Continuing our synergy with the chamber music concerts of London’s Conway Hall we are able to welcome to Luton this charismatic saxophone quartet from Germany. St Mary’s Church, Church St, Luton

New Year’s Eve at Woburn - Tue 31 Dec New Year’s Eve is a time for celebration and at The Sculpture Gallery we believe in welcoming the coming year with style and sophistication. Sculpture Gallery, Woburn

Christmas Singalong with The Courtyard Singers - Tue 10 Dec Come and sing all your Favourite Christamas Songs and Carols and have a fun morning with our singers! The Courtyard Centre of Health and Wellbeing, 6 HIgh Street, Biggleswade

Bucks Listings

Kids show - Sat 14 Dec Come along and join Jack In this charming, interactive, fun storytelling pantomime for kids aged 3+. Performed by West End singer Tracey Lyle and presented to you by pure imagination plays. All Saints Church Hall, Kempston

Beaconsfield Charity Christmas Card Shop til Wed 18 Dec Celebrating Our 50th Year In Beaconsfield. Hundreds of cards from 40 different charities, including the Alzheimer’s Society, British Heart Foundation, NSPCC, Cancer Research UK and RNLI. St Teresa’s Church Car Park (behind Waitrose)

Hansel and Gretel - The Pantomime - Sat 14 to Sun 22 Dec The Quarry Theatre presents their first in-house professional production: Hansel And Gretel – The Pantomime A funfilled, sugar-fuelled, family-friendly pantomime adventure. Quarry Theatre at St Lukes, 26 St Peters Street, Bedford

Stowe - Christmas shopping in the Parlour Rooms - til Sun 22 Dec Throughout the season you’ll find a select group of stallholders in our atmospheric Parlour Rooms selling homemade and traditional products. Stowe, New Inn Farm, Buckingham Christmas Spectacular at Odds Farm Park til Tue 24 Dec Odds Farm Park has been sprinkled with even more Christmas magic and spectacular surprises! Odds Farm Park, Wooburn Common, High Wycombe

Santa’s Marvellous Magical Toyshop - Sat 14, Sun 15, Sat 21 to Mon 23, Sat 28, Sun 29 Dec Christmas is coming, but after 164 years of service, Santa’s Chief Elf would like to retire. He’s getting old, and he wants to spend Christmas with his little family. Luton Library Theatre, Luton Central Library, St George’s Square, Luton

Missenden Abbey Christmas Fair - Sun 1 Dec Our Christmas Fair is from 11am - 4pm and it’s bigger and better than ever. Missenden Abbey, London Road

The Hat Factory Seasonal Skill Swap - Sat 14 Dec It’s that time of year where we look back on what we’ve all achieved and welcome the artistic community to celebrate each other’s

Eden’s Elf School returns! - Sun 1 to Tue 24 Dec Come along to Eden’s Elf School this December where kids can become Santa’s 43

little helpers! Children are invited to enjoy an immersive festive experience throughout December. Eden Shopping Centre, Oxford Street, High Wycombe

play based on storytelling from The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me. Age: For 3 months to 3 years. The Roald Dahl Museum, 81-83 High Street, Great Missenden

MacIntyre’s Charity Christmas Fair - Sun 1 Dec We are excited to be holding our very popular MacIntyre Christmas Fair 2019 at Chicheley Hall near Newport Pagnell.

Wolverton Town Band Christmas Concert Sat 7 Dec Continuing a festive tradition, Wolverton Town Band present their annual Christmas Brass Band Concert. St George’s Church, St George’s Way, Wolverton, Milton Keynes

Christmas Chocolate Tasting - Sun 1 Dec Take some time out in the busy Christmas period to pause with our mindful chocolate meditation and tasting workshop. Stowe House, Preservation Trust, Stowe

Wendover Choral Society Christmas Concert - Sat 7 Dec Wendover Choral Society perform Handel ‘Zadok the Priest’, ‘The King Shall Rejoice’ and Vivaldi’s ‘Gloria’. St Mary’s Church, Church Lane, Wendover

Waddesdon Manor - Letter Writing to Father Christmas - Sun 1 Dec Father Christmas is waiting to receive your Christmas list. Join us at the Stables to write your letter and Christmas list to Father Christmas. Waddesdon Manor, Waddesdon, near Aylesbury

Build a Flipped Fairytale Land - Sat 7, Sat 14 Dec Have fun with cardboard boxes and lots of craft materials to help construct a fairytale land. Your whole family can drop-in to construct buildings and landscapes. The Roald Dahl Museum, 81-83 High Street, Great Missenden

Waddesdon Manor - Christmas afternoon tea - Sun 1 Dec Treat yourself to a sumptuous Christmas afternoon tea, with a selection of savoury treats and sweet fancies and a glass of Prosecco. Served in the historic Manor Restaurant. Waddesdon Manor, Waddesdon, near Aylesbury

It is Father Christmas time! - Sat 7, Sat 14, Sat 21 Dec Father Christmas will be back in his grotto in the old prisoner’s exercise yard ready to see all his favourite people once more. Buckingham Old Gaol, Market Hill, Buckingham

Waddesdon Manor - I Saw Three Ships by light artist Anna Whetstone - Sun 1 Dec Take a musical meander through a decorated archway at the start of our woodland walk. Walk through an impressive archway inspired by the Svres porcelain ship vases in the House. Waddesdon Manor, Waddesdon, near Aylesbury

Illuminated Boats Procession - Sat 7 Dec There will be a parade of illuminated canal boats leaving Lionhearts Cruising club travelling to Campbell Park Marina where the marina’s boats will also be lit up Bring torches and lanterns. Lionhearts Cruising Club, Nicholas Mead, Great Linford, Milton Keynes

Cliveden - Picturesque Pioneer - Sun 1 Dec This audio-visual experience features British Path footage of Nancy Astor throughout her life, alongside audio clips from the British Library. Cliveden, Taplow, Maidenhead

Carolfest - Sun 8 Dec Join us at this informal community carol singing event. Where you get to help fill the church to the rafters with traditional Christmas Carols in a very relaxed, warm, friendly atmosphere. St Mary’s Church, Aylesbury

Stowe - Carols in the courtyard - Sun 1 Dec Throughout the festive season, enjoy yuletide cheer in the New Inn courtyard listening to traditional carols and music performed by local musicians whilst you sip on a winter warming drink. Stowe, New Inn Farm, Buckingham

Beauty & The Beast - Fri 13, Sat 14, Mon 16 to Thu 19 , Sat 21 to Tue 24, Fri 27 to Sun 29 Dec Rare Pantomimes are delighted to be appearing at Stantonbury Theatre this Christmas. They will bring a talented cast of professional actors together with a chorus of local juveniles to delight you. Stantonbury Theatre, Stantonbury, Milton Keynes

The Snow Queen (Family Pantomime) - Fri 6, Sat 7, Fri 13 to Sun 15, Fri 20 to Sun 22, Tue 24, Thu 26 to Sun 29 Dec Once upon a time there was a mirror which reflected all the evils of the world and turned people’s hearts to ice. Queens Park Arts Centre, Queens Park, Aylesbury

Chiddlers’ Hour: Christmas Special - Fri 13 Dec Come for songs, craft and play based on storytelling from Roald Dahl’s books. Age: For 3 months to 3 years. The Roald Dahl Museum, 81-83 High Street, Great Missenden

Chiddlers’ Hour: The Giraffe and the Pelly and Me - Fri 6 Dec Come for songs, craft and 44

Christmas ‘Come and Sing’ Concert - Sat 14 Dec Marlow Choral Society presents an Informal Christmas Carol Concert, 5.30 pm at All Saints’ Church, Marlow.

Torchlit Trails - Fri 27 to Tue 31 Dec Your opportunity to explore the Museum by torchlight! We’ll turn the lights down for the last hour of the day. The Roald Dahl Museum 81-83 High Street Great Missenden

A Christmas Miscellany - Brass Band Concert - Sat 14 Dec Watford Brass Band have been invited back for Christmas concert full of music you love to hear at this time of the year. Chesham United Reformed Church, The Broadway, Chesham

January Herts Listings Barnet Plus Social Group Games and Quiz Evenings - Sun 5 Jan Barnet Plus Social Group have a full programme of events every weekend throughout the year. On Sundays we meet at 8. Discovery Hall, 1 Stevenson Close, Netherlands Road, New Barnet

Christmas Party with Father Christmas - Sun 15 Dec It is ‘Party Time’ at Buckingham Old Gaol, party games, Christmas crafts, tea with Father Christmas and receive a present, lots of fun to be had by all. Buckingham Old Gaol, Market Hill, Buckingham

Herts Early Dance 12th Night Celebrations Sun 5 Jan Twelfth Night Cake and Wassail Coronation of the King & Queen of the bean followed by Dancing, Singing and Mumming Seasonal light refreshments Music by The Presence. St Stephen’s Church Hall, 14 Watling Street, St Albans

Beaconsfield Christmas Farmers’ Market Sat 21 Dec Our market is one week early in December, so you can ensure you’ll have plenty of local food and drink to enjoy again this Christmas! Windsor End, Old Town Tales Tattled & Told - the December Edition - Sat 21 Dec Edinburgh Fringe veteran Jo Blake Cave brings stories of the British Isles to the December Edition of Tales Tattled & Told. Rectory Cottages, 49 Church Green Rd, Bletchley, Milton Keynes

Hoddesdon Library Chess Group - Mon 6, Mon 13, Mon 20, Mon 27 Jan This is a group run for all adult Chess enthusiasts. We meet every Monday at Hoddesdon Library (meeting room), all levels including novices are welcome. Hoddesdon Library, 98 High Street, Hoddesdon

A Babe is born - Christmas music for choir & audience - Sat 21 Dec Wooburn Singers and our musical director Tom Hammond-Davies warmly invite you to join us for our concert of Christmas music for choir and for audience. We will be joined by organist Matthew Martin. St Mary’s Church, Windsor End, Old Beaconsfield

North Herts Association of National Trust The Arts & Crafts Movement in North Hertfordshire - Weds 8 Jan by Ros Allwood, Cultural Services Manager at North Herts Museum, 7.30 pm. Visitors welcome (£2) Membership of National Trust not necessary. Tea and coffee served during the evening. Secondhand books and homemade preserves are on sale at every meeting. During the winter and spring, meetings are held at Christchurch, Bedford Road, Hitchin

Christmas with the Chorale - Sat 21 Dec Our ever-popular concert of readings, seasonal music, and carols for choir and audience. A perfect opportunity to get into the Christmas spirit, with mulled wine and mince pies available. St Mary & St Giles, Church Street Stony Stratford

“English Love Affair with Nature” – Ian Alexander - Wed 8 Jan Illustrated talk organised by Watford Local RSPB Group. Ian Alexander whose book The English Love Affair with Nature tells the story of our long, tangled and passionate romance. Stanborough Centre, 609, St Albans Rd, Watford

Mind Body Spirit Xmas Winter Solstice Show - Sat 21 Dec A special Xmas Winter Solstice show of mediums, psychics, spiritual gift sellers and healers/therapists, many of them local. Buckingham Community Centre, Cornwall’s Meadow, Buckingham

Hertfordshire Chamber Orchestra Charity Concert - Sat 11 Jan The Hertfordshire Chamber Orchestra is one of Hertfordshire’s premier music ensembles. They perform just one annual concert in Harpenden with all proceeds supporting the A-T Society. St Nicholas Church, Church Green, Harpenden

Christmas Carol Service - Sun 22 Dec Join us for a wonderful Christmas Carol Service, in a beautiful medieval church. You can see all the historical wall paintings dating back to the 14th century. St Lawrence’s Church, London Road, Broughton Village, Milton Keynes

Monday Afternoon Concert - Mon 13 Jan All audience members are invited to join us in the Main House for a home-made tea after 45

the concert, included in the admission price. Benslow Music Trust, Ibberson Way, Hitchin

CADS presents the 2020 Royston Town Pantomime Jack and the Beanstalk by Tom Whalley. Fearless juvenile Jack, his ‘daft-asa-brush’ brother Simple Simon, and his longsuffering mother Dame Trott live. King James Academy, Senior Site, Garden Walk, Royston

Tanx Trax Music & Record Fair - Mon 13 Jan Independent record fair with plenty of Music Memorabilia, CD’s, Vinyl & Cassettes from lots of local dealers, new dealers added at each fair! Chilterns Sports & Social Club, Maple Lodge Close, Denham Way, Rickmansworth

Ceilidh - Laurel Swift, Hazel Askew, Ben Moss - Wed 29 Jan Whether you’re an experienced ceilidh dancer or a complete novice, come and enjoy a fun and entertaining evening for all ages with some of the UK’s leading folk musicians. Benslow Music Trust, Ibberson Way, Hitchin

5G & The Future Mobile Network - Thu 16 Jan Tom Curry, Principal Architect, Mobile Infrastructure, BT 5G has been in the news a lot recently, but what is it all about? Do we need another G (Generation) of mobile technology? Is it safe? Room B154, Main Building, University of Hertfordshire, College Lane, Hatfield

Simon & Garfunkel: Through The Years - Fri 31 Jan Critically acclaimed as one of the world’s greatest tribute shows, Simon & Garfunkel Through The Years returns with an all new production. Hertford Theatre, The Wash

Burn’s Night Supper & Ceilidh - Sat 18 Jan 7.30pm Cost £20 The Burn’s Night Supper will be a traditional Haggis, Tatties & Neaps meal. Elm Court Youth & Community Centre, Mutton Lane, Potters Bar

Beds Listings

Murder Mystery at Benslow Music - Sun 19 Jan Join us for another murder mystery event over a three-course dinner. Meet the suspects, witness the murder, be a detective and find the killer! Benslow Music Trust, Ibberson Way, Hitchin

Dunstable Downs and the Whipsnade Estate - New Year’s resolution walk - Wed 1 Jan Start the New Year with a bracing guided walk on the Downs. Give your New Year’s resolutions a kick-start with a brisk guided walk across beautiful countryside. Dunstable Downs and the Whipsnade Estate, Dunstable Road, Whipsnade

Ware Antique & Collectors Fair - Sun 19 Jan Ware Antique & Collectors Fair: 30+ tables offering antiques and collectables Doors open at 10am to 4pm £1 entry (50p concessions) Free Car Parking Food and drink available. Age Concern Hall, Priory Street, Ware

Music at St Mary’s - New Year’s Concert Sat 11 Jan St Mary’s answer to the New Year’s Day concert from Vienna. Performed by Aylesbury Concert Band, one of the country’s top Concert Bands. St Mary’s Church, Eaton Bray

The Story of Guitar Heroes - Sun 19 Jan “If you like music and guitars you will love this show!” Jimi Hendrix, Eric Clapton, Hank Marvin, Brian May and Slash are just some of the outstanding guitar heroes you will have chance to hear. Wyllyotts Theatre, Wyllyotts Place, Darkes Lane, Potters Bar

Luton Music Club - Patrick Hemmerlé - Mon 27 Jan This epic adventure is a wonderfully ambitious venture for us here in Luton. The Bear Club, Mill Yard, 24A Guildford St, Luton

Bucks Listings Waddesdon Manor - New Year’s Day Guided Walk - Wed 1 Jan Start the New Year with a walk around Waddesdon’s grounds guided by our Gardens Manager, Mike Buffin. Afterwards enjoy afternoon tea in the Manor Restaurant. Waddesdon Manor, Waddesdon, near Aylesbury

Royston Cave and the Templars? - Wed 22 Jan Royston Cave is an enigma. No records of its age or purpose exist. Some theories suggest it was used by the Knights Templars, others by King James I and the Freemasons. Halsey Hall, Walnut Tree House, Turners Hill, Cheshunt

Craft a Mischievous Clay Gremlin - Thu 2 Jan Gremlins were the mischievous mythical creatures featured in Roald Dahl’s first ever book for children, The Gremlins. The Roald Dahl Museum, 81-83 High Street, Great Missenden

Robin Hood and the Dame of Thrones - Thu 23 to Sun 26 Jan Book your tickets now for our exciting new pantomime Robin Hood and the Dame of Thrones. It’s a traditional pantomime with a few surprises. Wyllyotts Theatre, Darkes Lane, Potters Bar

Seasonal Stories and Crafts - Fri 3 Jan Enjoy this warm and cosy workshop that will fill you

Jack and the Beanstalk - Royston Town Pantomime 2020 - Fri 24, Sat 25, Fri 31 Jan 46

with fine CD recordings by Adrian Boynton. Milton Keynes City Church, 300 Saxon Gate West, Central Milton Keynes

all with holiday cheer! You’ll embrace the tradition of sharing a story and hear a traditional seasonal tale together. The Roald Dahl Museum, 81-83 High Street, Great Missenden

Come and Sing: Carmina Burana (excerpts) Sat 25 Jan This popular choral work (think ‘X-Factor’ or ‘Old Spice’) contains more than just that famous bit! Join us for a Come and Sing day to learn more of this dramatic and exciting music. Church of Christ the Cornerstone, Saxon Gate, Milton Keynes

Make a Flipped Fairytale Book Box - Sat 4 Jan When is a fairytale not a fairytale? When it’s in Revolting Rhymes! Roald Dahl’s book Revolting Rhymes is packed with traditional fairytales with some twists and unexpected surprises! The Roald Dahl Museum, 81-83 High Street, Great Missenden

The Bull at Gerrards Cross Wedding Fair Sun 26 Jan With several large function rooms, an excellent location and a fabulous selection of Local Wedding Suppliers and Services. The Bull is the perfect place to come if you’re in the midst of planning your wedding. The Bull, Oxford Road, Gerrards Cross

BACH: Christmas Oratorio - Sun 5 Jan The Cornerstone Chamber Choir & Orchestra Leader: Philippa Barton Conductor: Adrian Boynton. The Christmas Oratorio brings together six of Bach’s finest cantatas. Milton Keynes City Church, 300 Saxon Gate West, Central Milton Keynes

Winter Warmer - Friends of St Lawrence Church - Sun 26 Jan Join us for a wonderful event at the medieval church, see the wall paintings and stained glass and learn about the history of this beautiful place. London Road, Broughton Village, Milton Keynes

WI - Inside TV & Films - Life as an extra Thu 9 Jan Peter Hague will regale us with tales of his varied and interesting time as a TV and Film Extra. The Princes Centre, Clifford Road, Princes Risborough Claydon - Behind the scenes - Sat 11 Jan Join a tour and explore previously unseen parts of the house as the private family apartments come into National Trust care. Claydon, Middle Claydon, near Buckingham

Music Talk on Liszt - Thu 30 Jan The Vienna/Paris Years A talk illustrated with fine CD recordings by Adrian Boynton. As a pianist Liszt was among the greatest, if not the greatest. Milton Keynes City Church, 300 Saxon Gate West, Central Milton Keynes

Epiphany Carol Service - Sun 12 Jan Star of Wonder - The Choir of The City Church. Directed by Adrian Boynton, Led by Revd Wendy Carey In the third and last of our annual carol services. Milton Keynes City Church, 300 Saxon Gate West, Central Milton Keynes Missenden Abbey Wedding Fair - Sun 12 Jan Are wedding bells in your future? The Missenden Abbey Wedding Fair is just what you need to begin organising, or putting together the finishing touches, on your special day. Missenden Abbey, London Road

To be included in February’s listings Email: With listings in the subject line By 15th January 2020

Simply Swing - Sat 18 Jan The Story of Swing. Not just a band on a stage playing music, this is a journey through the history of swing music. Stantonbury Theatre, Stantonbury, Milton Keynes

Budding writers Are you a budding writer?

Bisham Abbey Wedding Fair - Sun 19 Jan Join us at this twelfth century Abbey which was once home to Henry VIII for their wedding fair where you’ll find all the needs of your special day under one roof. Marlow Road, Bisham, Nr Marlow

We are always looking for interesting articles and stories to included in The Sticks Magazine If you have anything you would like to be considered for publishing email to:

Music Talk about Beethoven - Mon 20 Jan 250th Anniversary Celebration Beethoven: The Early Years to 1800. A talk illustrated 47




Profile for The Sticks

Out now the December /January Issue of The Sticks digital magazine  

The number one what’s on magazine across Herts, Beds & Bucks with over 16,000 readers every month In this edition of T...

Out now the December /January Issue of The Sticks digital magazine  

The number one what’s on magazine across Herts, Beds & Bucks with over 16,000 readers every month In this edition of T...