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Win a sPa day

Women in business the rise oF the mumPreneur

at ragdaLe haLL

racheL stevens

on music and motherhood ss12 hottest trends

yummy mummy FOOD






your local estate agent T 0116 270 5900 F 0116 274 5732

One point of contact Bespoke marketing strategy Expert local knowledge Service tailored to you


Classic good looks with a warm heart Putting up with winter chills just because you won’t compromise on style? With a sympathetic makeover from EAS, you can keep up appearances and even save money on energy bills.

Isn’t it time you discovered how you can stay toasty and tasteful?

Call us today on

0116 2710120

Showhome at 25 New Street, Oadby, Leicester, LE2 5EB

February inside your

meet tHe team martina Lenaghan editor

great ideas for getting fit as part of Leicestershire’s growing running scene. And if like many of us you overspent at Christmas, Matthew Walne has advice on how we can all ‘get Financially Fit’ in 2012.

steve Lenaghan sales/marketing director 07738 614245 matt Lloyd creative director 07732 286080 susan wright freelance sales consultant 07974 966150 Harry padmore Print solutions consultant 07808 608335 emma Lloyd Accounts manager printers: spectrum Printing services desiGn: the urban fox media group Front Cover: supplied by Ann harvey


Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of material in this publication, the editor can accept no responsibility for the veracity of claims made by contributors in either editorial or advertising content.

heLLo And weLcome to our first edition of 2012. In anticipation of Mother’s Day next month, we start the year with our Yummy Mummy special edition. From maternity fashion and simple and effective makeup techniques, to getting the family involved in the kitchen and garden, we have it covered! If you’ve started your new Year fitness regime in earnest – and unlike me are still doing it – check out our health feature ‘Marathon Man (or Woman)!’ on page 16. Rob Pullen from Leicester Running Shop has some

One woman who doesn’t struggle with her figures is celebrity Mum, Rachel Stevens. Absent from the music scene for the last few years, she’s back in the studio, as well as being the new face of Baileys ‘Add a Little Something’ campaign and mum to one year old Amelie. As more women strive to balance motherhood with career we explore the rise of the ‘Mumpreneur’ and how technology can create time for your family and success for your business. In addition to all this, don’t miss our regular Reviews, What’s On and People & Places features. This month we also have three amazing competitions including a Ragdale Hall experience Day for two (p17) and opera tickets to Puccini’s La Boheme (p30).


All text, images and design in this publication are subject to copyright. Any unauthorised duplication is strictly prohibited. All artwork is accepted on the strict condition that permission has been given to use it in this publication.


Copy deadLines For next edition: 18th February design and 22nd February final print ready artwork. Contributors: Melanie Taylor, Heather White, Sanjaya Rakha, Rob Pullen, Portman Health, Lucy Cufflin, Carley Rimmer, Peter Wyatt, Chris gutteridge, Matthew Walne, Mat Mabe.


We are also running a Facebook competition for readers and businesses to launch our new look Facebook page. For your chance to win a £25 ASOS voucher or free advertising for your business, turn to page 8. Finally welcome to our new readers in Leicestershire and Rutland. We hope you enjoy this edition and join us next month for Men’s SS 12 fashion trends, our motoring and sport reviews, Mother’s Day gift guide and interview with Vice Chairman of West Ham Utd and Mumpreneur, Karren Brady. Until next time

Martina editor

issue 17


Urban fo x

Fashion, Beauty & Health 6

www.ThEU RbAN


women in busines s



Fashion sos


win a spa day at rag

the rise of the


dale hall

10 Catwalk to maternity 12 5 minute makeup


14 the relationship between Fertility and Fat

raCHeL’s return

16 marathon man (or woman)! 18 brace yourself



Wining & Dining 20 kids in the kitchen

Arts & entertainment 24 what’s on in Leicester 26 rachel’s return 28 Film & book reviews 30 theatre review



People & Places 32 Family Holidays: the survival guide

Properties & Interiors 36 kid’s rooms 40 preparing to sell in 2012 44 Child’s play


uS on imonnth P8 Like w fAceBook this Be in with a chance to win one of two great prizes.


competiton to win an experience day for two people worth £164

rachel stevens

on music motherhoand od

noW y ummy DeLiVereD m mmy tou12,500 HoMeS AnD BuSineSSeS. ss 12 hot test trends







from this month we are extending our distribution to 11,500 selected addresses within the affluent stoneygate, knighton, clarendon Park, oadby, evington village, areas of south-east Leicester, as well stoughton, great glen and kibworth. Additionally we will be placing 1,000 copies in designated fashion boutiques, hair and beauty salons, restaurants & bars across market harborough, oakham, uppingham, Loughborough & melton mowbray. watch this space for where you can pick up your copy!

Business & Finance 48 Get Financially Fit 50 mumpreneur’s the word

P30 LABoHeMe

competiton to win two tickets to see La Boheme at the de montfort hall



Fashion SOS Questions & Answers

Print dress & necklace, George at Asda, £18

I am about to finish my maternity leave and I’m looking for a stylish work outfit that will hide my ‘mummy’s tummy’. What do you suggest? Draping, ruching, knot and wrap details are great for hiding a tummy. Accessorise with a statement necklace and a pair of smart platforms or wedges.

Purple Leather Bag, Marks & Spencer, £85

Purple Platform,, £38

Melanie Taylor House of Colour Image Constultant

Yes. Very ‘in’ at the moment are a variety of flat-soled shoes and boots - loafers, brogues, ballet pumps. Texture is the key e.g. suede, leather, matt or shine.  If you like trainers then ‘on trend’ this Spring are trainers with wedges, a perfect combination of style and comfort.

Beechwood Loafers, Hobbs, £110

Bambie Brogues, Dune, £65 Patent Toe Quilted Pump, Mint Velvet, £89 Nimali Wedge Trainers, Bertie, £115


Images supplied by Highcross Leicester, Cruise

As a busy mum I’m constantly on the move. I wear an old pair of trainers that are comfortable though scruffy. Can I do ‘comfortable and trendy’?

Fenwick focus on trend....

Gerry Weber

SPRING FASHION Once again spring has arrived‌


For this coming season chunky horizontal stripes with a nautical feel are a must have. There is a huge selection of easy to wear clothing from light weight outerwear focusing on cool cotton macs and soft leathers to simple jersey dresses teamed with over sized bangles will take you from day to night.




Get the look at Fenwick Leicester Neutral cropped woven knits layered with a basic t-shirt or a crisp white shirt give comfort and style, easy pickings for a functional wardrobe. For the more fashion savvy Olsen have used bright block colours, which are still taking the lead for this season. Joules are using colour palettes of lipstick pinks mixed in with citrus oranges and limes bring as array of choice to team with wide leg linen pants. Benetton, bring far off shores direct to your door. Giving an array of sun to any outfit.


0 11 6 2 5 5 3 3 2 2 Market Street Leicester

O P E N E V E R Y S U N D AY 1 1 A M - 5 P M

a chance to WIn one of the following prizes terms & Conditions appLy see website: cLoSinG DAte 20tH feBruAry 2012

business oFFer

win a free quarter page advert in the urban fox magazine.

reader oFFer

win ÂŁ25 Asos fashion voucher

Beautiful clothes for children aged 0-12 years Top brands including dodipetto, geox, moccis, poppy and coco

0116 2793209

facebook/onceuponatimeinkibworth Opening Times 10-00 - 5-00 Tues-Fri, 10-00 - 4-00 Saturdays Any other time by appointment Once Upon A Kibworth 13 Station Street, Kibworth Beachaump, Leicester, LE8 0LN

PROFESSIONAL FRIENDLY SERVICE We are a local Craft and Wool shop which has been established over 18 years.



Offering a large selection of wool, stationery and craft materials from some of the industry’s top brands including King Cole, James Bright and Winsor Newton.


TEL: 0116 281 1010 MOB: 0750 0039 369




store aLert: check out Asos for on-trend mAternity weAr


tailored jacket, £28, tu at sainsbury

knitted dress, £40, ASoS

clutch Bag, £115, Pied a terre

Style Tip: Update the customary blue & white, with a splash of yellow. rope Bracelet, £2.99, internacionale

Style Tip: A dark vest top & blazer will offset heavily patterned trousers. floral crop trousers, £40, Asos

saddle Bag, £22, Accessorize

tango sandal, £45, m&s suede wedge espadrilles, £89, Mint Velvet


wear your bump witH styLe with four of this seAson’s hottest trends. PaSTEL

oranGE double collar Blouse, £30, Asos

embellished cardigan, £18, matalan

jL tote Bag, £139, john Lewis

images supplied by Highcross Leicester, Cruise

coachella ring, £8, Accessorize

Style Tip: Avoid looking too muted by adding metallic accessories skinny jeans, £32, Asos Ballet Pumps, £100, Pied a terre

kick-flare jeans, £16, matalan

Style Tip: Vivid orange not for you, then opt for subtle shades such as coral.

guildford Loafers, £149, hobbs



5 MInUTe MAKeUP when working with my cLients, one of the most freQuent comments i heAr is “i Just don’t Have tHe time”.


he morning routine in any household can leave you playing catch up all day. Packed lunches, breakfasts, buses to catch, hair to plait, sports kit to find and homework to finish, hardly help put the yummy into mummy! Don’t despair! As parents the most valuable skill we have is being able to multi-task, and if we apply the same principles to our morning makeup routine, with a few wellchosen products and a conveniently placed mirror, you can leave the school gate community wondering how on earth you manage to have the children at school – on time – and look great too.

Heather White Professional Makeup Artist Please contact me on:

Here is my Guide to mAking-uP in 5 minutes!


Apply a tinted moisturiser to the face, smoothing and blending with the fingertips from the centre of the face out towards the hair and jaw line. The new Blemish Balm (BB) creams that are coming over from Asia are brilliant as they combine hydration, even out colour and nurture the skin all in one product.


LAncÔMe, teint idoLe uLtre 24h, £27.00, fenwick


2 spLurGe

nArS BronzinG poWDer, £24,

LAVerA trenD SenSitiV tinted moisturising creAm creAm, £11.90,

Using a subtle bronzing powder and a big fluffy brush add contour to the face by lightly sweeping colour around the hair line, under the cheekbone, on the apples of the cheeks and just under the jaw line. Without adding more product to the brush, finish off with a quick flick over the eyelids. Remember less is more here, we are adding warmth and dimension, not blocks of colour, so take care not to pick up too much powder and really work that brush!


Honey Bronze BronzinG poWDer, £13,


GuerLAin 2 Brush mAscArA mAscArA, £25,

save - orifLAMe BeAuty 2fx mAscArA, £9.95,


Open up your eyes with a couple of coats of mascara, get right into the roots and lift the lashes upwards and outwards for maximum effect and to emphasise the lash line without using an eyeliner. Brush the brows into place and see how they frame your face.



Complete the application with lip colour. A sheer, pretty balm or gloss in a mid tone pink or peach works well for all skin-tones and balances out the look.

Dior Lip pALette, £38,


MADArA MoonkiSSeD Lip GLoSS, £9.90,

five minutes to FabuLousness!



I-lipo For Fat Reduction, Inch Loss & Body Shaping Gentle YAG laser hair removal Laser thread vein removal Laser skin tightening CACI non surgical facelift Microdermabrasion / Oxygen Facial retreat vertical half pg adAW.pdf 1 27/09/2011 Hot stone / Aromatherapy massage Semi permanent eyelashes Waxing / Threading Manicure / Pedicure Cal Gel long lasting nail polish Twinkle Toes long lasting glitter polish

Clinique De Beauté Laser & Beauty Clinic, 2 Southernhay Road, Leicester, LE2 3TJ.

0116 270 9060


Buy 2 products get your facial for 1/2 price. T&C apply cannot be used with any other offer.

don’t despair! As PArents the most vALuABLe skiLL we hAve is Being ABLe to muLti-tAsk.




54 London Rd, Oadby, Leicester

0116 271 7183 13


The relationship between

fertility and fat

it is common knowLedge thAt Being overweiGHt or obese Can reduCe a woman’s FertiLity And reseArch shows it cAn ALso Affect A mAn’s fertiLity too. poLyCystiC ovary syndrome (pCos)

PCOS is a condition where tiny cysts develop on the ovaries. It produces symptoms in approximately 5-10% of women of reproductive age and is thought to be one of the leading causes of female subfertility. Symptoms include:

menstruAL irreguLArity – most

common occurrences are fewer or no menstrual periods.

Sanjaya Rakha Weight Management Counsellor Lighter Life (Leicester) For further information call me on 0116 2547333

high LeveLs of mAscuLinising hormones - causing

acne, hirsutism (excessive hairiness) and frequent menstrual periods.

metABoLic syndrome

– this in part is caused by the body’s resistance to insulin, encouraging it to produce more. These continuously high insulin levels keep blood sugar levels low, which means it’s easier to put on weight and harder to lose it.

infertiLity – caused by a lack of ovulation.

Weight reduction is recommended as the first line of treatment to induce ovulation in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) who are encountering problems conceiving (Pasquali R,

Pelusi C et al, 2003). By following a healthy diet and beginning a regular exercise routine, you can help your body increase its response to insulin and possibly decrease masculinising hormone production. This may help reduce symptoms and make it easier to conceive. even if you don’t suffer with PCOS, obesity can cause pregnancy complications (gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia, caesarean) and is associated with maternal death, still-born babies, foetal abnormalities, extended labour and postnatal complications.

maLe inFertiLity

Studies have shown there are many weight-related factors that can cause fertility problems for men:

“If you are struggling to lose weight on your own and need a programme of support then the right very low calorie diet (VLCD) with robust medical protocols and in conjunction with counselling could be the best course of action for you” Lower testosterone LeveLs – increasing

the likelihood of sperm abnormalities.

excessive fAt Around the BeLLy - causing the testicles to overheat.

Poor sPerm QuALity

- caused by an unhealthy lifestyle and diet that leads to obesity. Some ways in which a man can improve his fertility include weight loss, physical activity, healthy eating, vitamins, wearing loose boxer shorts and cold showers (over hot baths). These and other actions should be discussed with your fertility specialist. So whether you’re a man or a woman looking to start a family, don’t let obesity hold you back. By exercising and making sure you follow a healthy balanced diet you will increase your chances of having a baby.

By eXerciSinG AnD MAkinG Sure you foLLoW A HeALtHy BALAnceD Diet you WiLL increASe your cHAnceS of HAVinG A BABy.


“LighterLife’s different. Weekly groups and a Weight-Management Counsellor will help you change the way you think about food and keep the weight off. Set meals, with soups, shakes and bars keep you on track.” Pauline Quirke

For a FREE Initial Consultation, call:

Sanjaya Rakha, Leicester

0116 2547333 Janet Washington, Wigston

0116 2001939 Tabitha Prince, Market Harborough

01858 462035 Debbie Ford, Loughborough

01509 234433

hing. c t a i nt s w o p o N nting. No calorie cou

. ssle a h No lighten up with

*Offer available until 31 March 2012 via participating Weight-Management Counsellors only. Weekly meeting fee applies and Foodpack purchase necessary.




Man (or Woman)! Nationwide running is becoming more popular and Leicestershire has possibly the most active running scene in the Country. Few counties have over twenty clubs, a specific county road league and a multitude of races from 10k to the Round Leicester Relay.


t’s through these races and events that the popularity of running in Leicestershire is showing. For example the Park Run is a free country-wide event happening at 9am every Saturday in many towns and cities. Leicester’s is at Braunstone Park and started back in 2010 with only a handful of runners and now has hundreds of competitors per run!

Club membership is on the up, which is having a knock on effect in the Leicestershire Road Running League (LRRL), which most club members compete in. The LRRL has around ten races split into winter and summer leagues. Winter


league races are for club runners only, while the more popular summer races are open to anyone. If you prefer to run on trails or cross-country there are popular events like the Charnwood Hills Fell Race, the Belvoir Challenge (16 or 26 miles), the Huncote Hash and Charnwood Marathons to name but a few.


If you are interested in running, the most important thing you need is a pair of running shoes, which match your running style or gait. The shoe should provide a good fit, the right stability; so that the foot roll (pronation) is controlled and not over rolling (over pronating) and then landing / flowing well. Foot shape and biomechanics vary enormously.

Manufactures make a range of running shoes and it’s best to get a gait test at a good running shop, to check what technically suits and will give the required response under foot. Compared to walking, running puts between 3 to 6 times more weight in biomechanical load onto the body, therefore injuries from poor shoes are common. A few injuries generally preventable through correct footwear are shin splints, medial knee pains and blisters, especially on the heel and behind the ball of the foot.

Getting Started

Then you just have to get out there. Start with either a short walk or run for a week or two and then gradually increase the distance, allowing your body to adapt

and progress. There are some very good training programs on the internet e.g. www. Runnersworld. Once you can run for a steady 30 minutes, you could think about doing an event like a 10km. After that you just have to decide where to take your running. For example doing a half or full marathon is very rewarding.

The Leicester marathon and half marathon is in October, so plenty of time to start training!

Leicester Runni Leicester Running Shop Leicester Running Shop

Leicester Running Shop Running Shop Shop erer Running

WIN a Ragdale

Experience Day for TWO people at Ragdale Hall Health Hydro and Thermal Spa (worth £164)


To be in with a chance to win simply email your name, address and contact details to:, with ‘Ragdale Hall’ in the subject box. Alternatively postal entries should be sent to 2 Princess House, 26 De Montfort Street, Leicester, LE 1 7GD If you are not the lucky winner, then maybe a Ragdale Hall gift voucher would be the perfect Valentines present. Terms: Vaild Mon - Fri, non refundable, guests mustr be 16 years or over. Closing date 2nd March

For more information call

0116 2708447

146a Clarendon Park Rd, Leicester, LE2 3AE

Ragdale Hall Health Hydro and Thermal Spa Ragdale Village, Nr Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, LE14 3PB Tel: 01664 434831,



Acrylic veneers can also be used. This option significantly reduces the cost and good results can still be achieved. Finally chair side veneers or composite bonding can be used, and in just a single visit the patient can walk out with the straight teeth they always wanted.

Brace Yourself for Straight Teeth We all remember braces when we were at school or our kids going through treatment. ‘Train tracks’ certainly made a lasting impression.


hey were difficult to live with and looked pretty awful but they worked and could straighten out even the most crooked teeth.

Thankfully now as with most treatments, things have moved on and whilst ‘train tracks’ are still routinely used, there are many other alternatives. Tooth-coloured braces can be used rather than the stainless steel looking originals and the brackets can be fixed on the inside of the teeth so they cannot be seen. For less severe cases invisible braces can be


used, which take the form of see-through close fitting gum shields, that are changed every month or so during treatment. Examples include ‘Invisalign’ and ‘Clear step’ braces. Finally there are the removable braces. The ‘Inman aligner’ offers a great solution to sorting out crowded front teeth in both top and bottom jaws. Treatment time with the Inman aligner is between 3-12 months, depending upon complexity and of course the patient wearing it! The upside to braces, are that a great long term

aesthetic result can be achieved without having to drill or glue anything to the tooth. The downside is that it can take over 2 years to complete the treatment and a lot of visits to the dentist, plus it does not alter the shape or colour of your teeth. The alternative to braces is to veneer any teeth that require correction. Porcelain veneers are certainly the material of choice for the long term, and it’s certainly true that not all veneers are created equal. Make sure you check the type of porcelain to be used and the reasons for your dentist’s choice.

For less severe cases invisible braces can be used, which take the form of see-through close fitting gum shields.

The benefit of veneers is that a beautiful, straight set of teeth, that are the correct colour and shape, can be achieved in just 2 weeks. The disadvantage is that your natural teeth will have to be altered either by reshaping them or by glueing porcelain or resins to them. Whether you choose braces or veneers, the great thing is that there are now more predictable ways of correcting crooked or uneven teeth to suit almost everyone. Consult a proficient professional regarding which treatment is most suitable for you and where possible ask to see examples of previous treatments he/she has carried out.

Portman Healthcare Dental Clinics

For your nearest practice visit or call 0116 255 1882

don’t hide your smile Do you have a uneven smile that is sapping your confidence, or worry about your appearance. We can restore that confidence and make dental hygiene easier. We have regularly been creating beautiful smiles for our patients using our cutting-edge range of teeth straightening procedures. Improving your smile can begin with a call to one of our Leicester practices.

0116 255 1882

• Granville Dental Practice    0116 255 1882 • Kibworth Dental Practice    0116 279 6565 • Lavender Road     Dental Clinic    0116 222 1880 • Uppingham Dental       Practice    0157 2823595

For more information about our dentistry services scan here with your Smartphone


KIDS In THe KITCHen text - ‘MADe fAB WHite cHoc

cupcAkeS. yuM. fAncy H M BurGerS 4 t? cAn Get Beef X’


o read the text from my 16 year old son, Sam. How can I be so lucky to have a teenager offering to make homemade burgers for our supper, I hear you ask? Well, I guess that Sam has always been involved in the kitchen. not just doing interesting stuff like making cakes, but playing in the washing up, seeing what different noise saucepans make, stirring, mixing, adding, weighing out for me. Believe me you can have hours of fun with a set of weighing scales and a bag of flour when

Lucy Cufflin Lucy’s Food Shop Stoneygate Please feel free to contact me at :

they are young. Familiarity breeds confidence, so open that door and allow the kitchen to become a place of real fun.

ok, i Admit it cAn Be messy, reALLy messy, but mess Can be CLeaned And eventuALLy one dAy they wiLL wAnt to mAke something reAL. We chose Sam’s favourite - Spaghetti Bolognese - to start with. We found a recipe, shopped together, cooked together and ate it together. Cooking gave us real quality time together and giving him the ability to pick up a cookery book and follow a recipe is probably the singular most important thing I have ever taught him.

A LiFe skiLL he wiLL never Lose And hoPefuLLy use freQuentLy. So yes, the mess can be frightful in the kitchen when they are young, but now as I head back for my home made burger and white chocolate cupcakes I can honestly say all those flour covered kitchen days, were really worth it! So here is Sam’s new white chocolate cupcake recipe to try:


Get involved!

“Another foolproof and fabulous recipe from Lucy’s Food”. Contact me for any cookery questions or topics you would like covered.

White Choc Cupcakes

makes: for 6 large muffin sized cupcakes

Ingredients: For tHe Cake: Weigh two whole eggs in shell and measure equal amounts of butter (at room temperature) and caster sugar. Weigh the same amount of SR flour less 8g which you replace with cornflour and a few drops of vanilla extract. For tHe iCinG: 100g white chocolate 75g butter (room temp) 30ml milk ½ teaspoon vanilla extract 250g icing sugar


■ Using an electric whisk

beat the butter, vanilla and sugar together until white, light and fluffy. ■ Add the eggs one at a time, beating in between to return the mixture to its fluffy state. ■ Add the mixed flours and fold in by hand using a metal spoon not the electric beater. The mixture should be dolloping consistency. If too thick add a tablespoon of water.


belmont HOTEL

■ Divide between 6 large

muffin cases in a tray and bake at 180C/350F for 20 minutes or until risen and springy to the touch. ■ Allow the cake to cool completely before icing. ■ Meanwhile make the icing – beat the butter, milk & icing sugar together using an electric whisk and add the vanilla. If you are using unsalted butter add a pinch of salt. ■ Melt the chocolate in a bowl over a pan of boiling water and once melted allow to cool for 10 minutes. Then drizzle into the butter icing beating all the time. The icing will be runny but then set as the chocolate cools, so use it before it’s too hard to spread. ■ Top the cakes with the icing and decorate with grated white chocolate, blueberries or chocolate drops.

cookinG GAVe uS reAL QuALity tiMe toGetHer.

Fabulous food at The Belmont From delicious dining and scrumptious Sunday lunches in the Cherry Restaurant to relaxed sharing platters, salads and flat iron steaks in the Bar – there’s something for everyone. Pop in for a cappuccino and something sweet or celebrate your special occasion with a private dinner, both come with a warm welcome!

0116 254 4773



Hat Trick for Kibworth Lino and Sarah Poli, of Firenze and Boboli restaurants, were thrilled at the end of last year to receive the PAPA Pizza and Pasta Award to add to their prestigious AA 2 Rosettes.

Added to that both Firenze and Boboli have entries in The Good Food Guide 2012, meaning it looks as if it’s going to be a great year for The Polis. Sarah wholeheartedly agrees. “We are so happy with these achievements; especially in a time where survival has sometimes seemed against the odds. As ever we are indebted to our wonderful team of loyal and committed staff, fabulous customers and supportive friends. We hope that this marks the turn of mood in the current climate, and are looking forward to the forthcoming year with great excitement and anticipation”. As Firenze looks towards its



12th birthday and Boboli to its 5th, The Polis and their team continue to work tirelessly to sustain their high standards of food and service. Ladies Lunches, Boboli Bazaars, Jazz Evenings and fabulous Gourmet Wine Grower Suppers, are just some of the creative events hosted at The Poli Restaurants for 2012. If you’re not already a fan, you soon will be!

Ladies Lunches, Boboli Bazaars, Jazz Evenings and fabulous Gourmet Wine Grower Suppers, are just some of their creative events

Enjoy our new Prezzo Fisso by choosing 3 courses from our main a la carte menu for just £32.50. Order for at least 2 people and receive a bottle of wine on us.


2012, and we’re feeling sweet, so book a table for at least 2 people, choose a starter and a main course each, and we will treat you to a delicious Dolci, on us. *Terms & conditions apply, see website for details

Open for Lunch & Dinner Tuesday to Saturday Telephone 0116 279 6260 Open 7 days a week from 10am Telephone 0116 279 3303

the Restaurateur would you like to serve up a review of your restaurant to a potential 25,000 urban fox readers. If so contact our editor

for further details



What’s on in Leicester

An Evening with Andy Abraham


The most refreshing voice on the current soul scene, Andy Abraham has appeared on X Factor arena tours and solo sell-out shows including the Royal Albert Hall. He has released three albums, selling in excess of half a million records. This is a truly special intimate show.

Leicester Poetry Society Fri 10 February Friends Mtg House £4, concessions £3

Poet, dramatist and children’s author David Duncombe reads from his works and takes questions.

Dave Newton / Mick Hutton Duo

Phillipa and Will are now in a relationship

Fri 24 February Richard Attenborough Centre £10, Concessions £5

Sun 12 February Richard Attenborough Centre Tickets £5

Talent Streak February Half Term

Meet Phillipa and Will: an oversexed, over-sharing Romeo and Juliet for the internet age. Follow these indiscreet young lovers through their courtships, break-ups, tantrums and make-ups, all told entirely through a Facebook wall-towall. Suitable for 14+ years.


Fri 24 February The Guildhall Tickets £21

Phillipa and Will are now in a relationship Richard Attenborough Centre

Talent Streak

Calendar Girls

This course is aimed at young people aged 16-18 with an interest in all aspects of performing arts including dance, singing and acting. Young people will develop their skills further in these areas and have the opportunity to work towards a performance at the end of the fun-filled week.

Following an award-winning West End run and a record breaking week at DMH, Calendar Girls is coming back for the very last time due to phenomenal demand. The original Calendar Girl herself Lynda Bellingham returns to the show with Camilla Dallerup, Jan Harvey, Sue Holderness, Deena Payne, Lisa Riley, June Watson & Ruth Madoc.

Mon 13 - Fri 17 February Chill Enterprises, Midland St FREE

Half term sports camp

Mon 20 – Sat 25 February De Montfort Hall Tickets from £15

Mon 13 – Fri 17 February Leicester Grammar School A premier sport camp for 3-15 year olds at Leicester Grammar School during the school holidays for boys and girls of all abilities. The philosophy is to inspire children through fun, active and safe experiences.

Dave Newton is an urbane and resourceful pianist with an effortlessly swinging style, whilst Mick Hutton is one of the finest bassists on the UK scene.

< Full Details of Event

Dave Newton

Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons Sat 25 February Welford Road Adults £17, Junior £9

Tigers play Newcastle Falcons in the Aviva Premiership at Welford Road. Bring all the family and visit the new Junior Tigers Club VIP area in the Final Whistle from two hours prior to kick-off, with games, quizzes, player appearance and a free milkshake for JTC members. Sign up to the club is free!

Corey Mwamba

Fri 2 March Richard Attenborough Centre £8, £5 Concessions

Free-wheeling, spontaneous and creative music from the Derby vibes player as he combines elements of jazz, folk and electronic. With Dave Kane (bass) and Joshua Blackmore (drums). For more info please visit

Coming Home

Sun 4 March De Montfort Hall Tickets £20

Lynda Bellingham returns to the show

A tribute to local forces by local artists and celebrities in aid of the Lord Mayor’s Appeal for the Royal Anglian Regiment Benevolent Charity. Produced by Miss Ann Oliver MBE, in conjunction with the Leicester College of Performing Arts and Stage School.


Mon 27 February - Sat 3 March Curve Theatre Tickets from £24.50

Cultural Exchanges Festival

Mon 27 February – Fri 2 March De Montfort University, £5 culturalexchanges

20th anniversary tour Matthew Bourne’s Nutcracker! is one of the most popular dance productions ever staged in the UK.

Meet the Mayor

Wed 29 February Haymarket Shopping Centre FREE Sir Peter Soulsby and his team will meet, and take questions from you, the public, in this informal event. Starts from 1pm.

Cultural Exchanges is a diverse week of interactive discussions, performances and talks at DMU; showcasing an eclectic programme of guests. Hosted by the Faculty of Humanities, Join Paws 4 a Cause sponsored the festival is run by Arts and Dog Walk. Call LOROS on Festivals Management degree 0116 231 8484 students.

Paws 4 a Cause

Sun 4 March Abbey Park FREE

Join Paws 4 a Cause sponsored Dog Walk. Call LOROS on 0116 231 8484 for FREE Registration and get your doggy sponsored for the 4Km walk! A maximum of 2 dogs per person.



“At some point, yes, I’d love more kids, but right now, we’re happy with just the one extra mouth to feed!”


Rachel’s Return Rachel Stevens has been away for too long. Sure, the demands of motherhood quite legitimately expect full and devoted attention, but little Amelie’s gain has surely been the music industry’s loss.


hankfully, the ‘Sweet Dreams My LA Ex’ and ‘Some Girls’ singer is back – revived, revitalised, and looking as stunning as ever. “I’m in the studio again, and it feels brilliant to be back doing it,” she begins. “It feels like the right time. Music’s something I absolutely love. It makes me feel complete. But this time I’m changing things around a bit – a new sound, a bit of a departure from what I did before, and exciting times.”

The mum of one, regularly voted one of the sexiest women on the planet by FHM readers toyed with the idea of an acting career, winning supporting roles in such intellectual fare as ‘Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo’ and ITV drama ‘Susie Gold’, and even uprooted herself to LA to pursue her on-screen dream. So are there any plans to step in front on the lens again? “Nothing at the moment, but you never know. If

something comes up, maybe, but I’m really busy with everything else going on, so it’s not my main priority. For the time being at least, I’m going to keep my focus in the studio.” She adds: “I loved my time out in LA, I didn’t do it solely for the purpose of my career; I just really fancied a change as well. I did go for lots of auditions and worked on my music, but nothing concrete came out of it. But give me the chance; I would jump at an opportunity to move out there again for a while. Maybe when Amelie’s older? The lifestyle is second to none.” For the time being, Stevens - the face of the Baileys drink and their ‘Add a Little Something’ campaign – is busy encouraging women to have their girlfriends round for a fun night in. With going out becoming much more expensive, it’s a notion that sits nicely with newfound motherhood and the constant need for babysitters! “Everything has changed so dramatically really,” she says. “Nothing could have prepared me for it. I’m

I think the credit crunch has had a real effect on that, so we’re calling for girls to get involved in and inspired Everything to be going out changes. We’re or staying in responsible for this more – whatever, little person. But as long as they I’m in love with are enjoying her; she’s such a themselves. great girl, so good, we do in life, has never really Whatever everyone needs a bit of a cried, and makes break.” it very easy for us. So while she’s out

up early every morning, and I’m not great at getting up early. At least I wasn’t before...I’m better now. We used to go out all the time at the drop of a hat but we can’t do that now. It takes so much forward planning.

But it’s been really interesting getting involved with the Baileys campaign as well. People are socialising in different ways than they used to. I’ve loved the drink for years, and was interested to hear that 73% of women never or only get together on special occasions for girly nights.

enjoying herself, Rachel’s putting on hold plans to extend the family?! “Amelie’s magical and a delightful thing. At some point, yes, I’d love more kids, but right now, we’re happy with just the one extra mouth to feed!”

For the time being, Stevens - the face of the Baileys drink and their ‘Add a Little Something’ campaign – is busy encouraging women to have their girlfriends round for a fun night in. 27


fIlM reVIeW tHe desCendants fri 10 – tHu 23 feB


tarring the delectable george Clooney, The Descendants is the latest film from Alexander Payne, writer and director of the charming Sideways. Clooney stars as Matt King, a successful lawyer living with his wife and two daughters in Hawaii. Don’t be fooled however, as the hilarious opening voice-over explains, Hawaii is not just some island paradise. After a boating accident puts his wife in a coma, Matt is forced to confront his shortcomings as both a husband and father. Clooney has a knack for making even the most emotionally distant men likeable, and his performance here is superb.

As we watch Matt try to come to terms with certain revelations about his wife, the film shifts to become a fascinating look into what it means to be a parent. How to deal with daughter’s boyfriends, temper tantrums and how the line between parent and friend can be blurred. Perhaps quarter of an hour too long, but this is a small price to pay for such a rich and entertaining film. phoenix square Box office: 0116 242 2800

cLooney hAs A knAck for mAking even the most emotionALLy distAnt men LikeABLe, And his PerformAnce here is suPerB.


tHe rise and FaLL oF a yummy mummy By poLLy WiLLiAMS


his story describes one woman’s struggle to fit back into her old self. Amy Crane is in crisis: six months after the birth of her baby, she still looks pregnant and can’t remember the last time she had a wax, or an orgasm. Motherhood is stirring up disturbing questions about her own childhood and

she suspects her boyfriend is cheating. enter Alice, yummy mummy superior, on a mission to transform Amy’s body and love life. As Amy swaps breast pads for Botox and climbs out of a vortex of self-doubt, her libido awakens from its long nap and things get rather more complicated. The publisher’s blurb heralds it as a “wonderfully wellwritten, funny and sharp novel about the trials of playing hip happy families and the contradictions at the heart of modern motherhood”. It’s chicklit basically, but not too banal. And as Pulizter Prize-winning Phyllis Mcginley once said, “A bit of trash now and then is good for the severest reader. It provides the necessary roughage in the literary diet”. Published in paperback by Little, Brown Book group - £7.99. available from the bookshop | kibworth| 0116 2791121 |

motherhood is stirring uP disturBing Questions about Her own CHiLdHood And she susPects her Boyfriend is cheAting. 28

Small Simple and Sounds Superb

Ask Around Sound to create a home entertainment system which you will be able to operate. Bose V series Lifestyle are our Best Selling home cinema product. They may seem a little expensive at first glance, but they are so clever, you will love using it and never regret the investment. Probably the closest to future proof anyone could offer you.

To book an appointment to discuss your system Call 0116 270 6168

AROUND SOUND sound and vision for life

17 Francis Street, Leicester, LE2 2BE



WIN LA BOHEME TICKETS For your chance to win 2 tickets to La Boheme at De Montfort Hall, on Tuesday 13th March 2012

Please email your name and contact details to: by 2nd March 2012 and insert ‘La Boheme Competition’ in the subject box. Postal entries should be sent to 2 Princess House, 26 De Montfort Street, Leicester, LE1 7GD.  

La Boheme

THEATRE REVIEW La Boheme Tue 13 March


escribed as “genuinely exquisite”, with “extraordinary performances”, Ellen Kent’s spring opera tour visits Leicester in March with a brand new production of Puccini’s La Boheme. Sung in Italian with English surtitles, La Boheme, based on Henri Murger’s novel Scenes de la vie de boheme, focuses on the love between seamstress Mimi and poet Rodolfo. After falling in love instantly, Rodolfo later leaves Mimi due to her flirtatious behaviour, although he’s wracked by guilt as their time together has probably worsened Mimi’s delicate constitution. In true tragic opera fashion, the pair reunite briefly at the end before Mimi dies.


International sopranos Elena Dee and Maria Tsonina take the leading role of Mimi, while “ladies favourite” Andriy Perfilov is Rodolfo. They are joined by a 70-strong company including tenor Ruslan Zinevych, who has sung with Pavarotti and performed Kent’s operas at the Royal Albert Hall in London. New conductor Gheorghe Stanciu, artistic director of the Constanta Opera in Romania, has joined the tour, bringing a new focus to the music, provided by the esteemed Kharkiv Theatre Orchestra. For further information on the 75-date UK and Ireland tour of Kent’s Madama Butterfly, La Traviata and La Boheme, go to or

Derek Block Classical Arts on Facebook, or follow @DBClassicalArts on Twitter. Box Office: 0116 233 3111

Sung in Italian with English surtitles, La Boheme, based on Henri Murger’s novel Scenes de la vie de boheme, focuses on the love between seamstress Mimi and poet Rodolfo.


issions, t less em e fun. e e m n More fu ions meet mor s ello less emis gentlemen say h e d th n , Ladies a Fiat 500 TwinAir r ca w l to the ne emission petro e 2 er O lowest C e world.* And h it th se engine in techy bit, becau s e ev comes th rque at lower r 5 to 9 e has mor missions of only s e les and CO2 get more fun, ay u get aw g/km, yo d n a s ’s a emission ying road tax. It pa en. without car heav in e d a m match

Model 500 TwinAir OTR £11,660 Fiat Deposit Contribution £500 Customer Deposit £1,250 Amount of Credit £9,910 36 Monthly Payments £159 Optional Final Payment (inc fee of £285) £4,606 Total amount payable by customer £11,580 Duration of Contract 37 months Rate of Interest (Fixed) 0.62% APR Representative 1.9%

Sturgess Fiat

£500 Deposit Contribution Less than £160 per month

Aylestone Road, Leicester, LE2 7QN

Tel: 0116 254 1717

The Official Fuel Consumption figures in mpg (L/100km) and CO2 emissions (g/km) for the Fiat 500 1.2 Pop are: Urban 44.1 (6.4). Extra Urban 65.7 (4.3). Combined 55.4 (5.1) and CO2 119 (g/km). Finance subject to status (over 18’s only), a guarantee may be required, written details available on request. Prices correct at time of going to print. This advert supersedes any previously advertised offers. Please note models portrayed are for illustration purposes only. All offers are subject to manufacturer campaign changes without prior notice. *According to NEDC standard. ^Deposit contributions are paid by FAFS (Fiat Automobiles Financial Services), terms & conditions apply, ask for details. Calls may be monitored to ensure quality of service.


FAMILY HOLIDAYS: the SurVIVal guIDe this month in the urBAn fox we exPLore some of the most PoPuLAr oPtions, to HeLp you survive tHe FamiLy HoLiday!


t’s that time of year when we start to think about the Family Holiday. For some of us the planning is an exciting process, as we look forward to spending precious time together as a family and the opportunity for our children to experience new places, languages and cultures; try different food, and acquire new skills and friends. For others the thought of spending months planning and saving, just to hear those infamous words ‘I’m bored’, is enough to send them into a blind panic.


suMMeR suN

Beach-based holidays are a classic family option and in a competitive market, with providers increasingly attuned to families’ needs, it’s possible to get some summer sun on practically every budget. In addition to the almost guaranteed sunshine, with resorts offering kids clubs, watersports and other child friendly amenities, they’ll be sure to be occupied. And with more all-inclusive packages available you can even plan your holiday finances in advance. It’s probably best to avoid longhaul until they’re older; instead consider shorter flights or ferry/car options

Tip: Sunburn in childhood could double the chances of skin cancer in adult life. Therefore take care between 11am and 3pm and use sunscreen, UV protection clothes, hats and wraparound sunglasses.

cItY BreaKS

If you want to trade the sunbed for sightseeing, if planned carefully, city breaks can be great for the whole family. Typically cities have a great blend of tourist attractions, as well as family-friendly amenities and facilities. But don’t overdo it - stick to just a couple of attractions a

day, and combine them sensibly e.g. a morning in a museum with an afternoon swimming. Particularly successful family shortbreaks combine a couple of days in a city with a day or two at a theme park. Think Paris and Disneyland. You can even avoid the airport nightmare and go by train. Tip: Consider accommodation with a pool, a great energyburner after sightseeing.


The range of family adventure holidays has broadened dramatically and you can now offer your kids all manner of

Winter Sports

Winter Break with the kids

Adventure break, the Galapogos Islands

potentially life-changing experiences from an Elephants and Waterfalls Family Adventure in Thailand to the Galapagos Islands. Even those with very young children are now catered for. Adventure holidays are a great way of tackling destinations and/ or activities you’re wary of doing alone. They can also be a means of combining holidays with educational themes, and discovering cultures not easily accessible on mainstream holidays. However, these are organised trips and you’re largely tied down to schedules. Also whilst clean and comfortable, the accommodation isn’t

luxurious. You might find yourself sleeping on a farm, campsite or even a train. Tip: Think about whether your family is fit enough for the kind of holiday you’re planning, as it might involve a reasonable amount of walking, often in conditions hotter than they’re used to.


Ok perhaps not the obvious holiday of choice right now, but Titanic jokes aside, with the number of special offers growing daily, and cruise companies tripping over themselves to cater for

the ever-expanding family market, cruise holidays are a more tempting option than in the past. Whilst being on board a ship for a week or more isn’t everyone’s choice, they do allow you to visit several destinations on one holiday, whilst offering an array of activities including swimming, surfing, dolphin/whale watching; wall-climbing, teen clubs, and even iceskating! Choose your cabin wisely, as it needs to be big enough. If you can stretch to a private balcony this is a great option for parents to enjoy a glass of wine in the evening, whilst the children are asleep inside. Tip: Choose a company that offers a relaxed dining policy i.e. you can eat when you want, and have a choice of restaurants.

Given the opportunity, most kids enjoy Winter sports holidays. From sledging, sleigh rides, snowman building, snowball fights, hot chocolate, to the skiing itself. Get it right and you’ll have a shared family experience that can last a lifetime. Resorts are increasingly child-friendly, and there are a growing number of accommodation options. Consider a holiday village combining selfcatering apartments with hotel-style facilities such as a pool, restaurants and a launderette or a catered chalet with professional childcare. Accommodating 8 -16 people, they can be great for extended families or families holidaying together and some will even pre-order items such as nappies and wipes, provide a toy box in the chalet and also design meal and crèche timings around you. Tip: Rent or borrow children’s clothing and equipment as they quickly grow out of them. And don’t forget the sunscreen! Of course, a family holiday is more than a break in the sun, a trip to a theme park or a visit to a city or ski slope; it’s the chance for the entire family to learn, develop and grow together and most all have fun!

the opportunity for our children to experience new places, languages and cultures. 33


Skydiving for Sick Children A Leicestershire woman is to take to the skies to complete a breath-taking parachute jump to raise money for charity. Kit Rakkar, a local businesswoman and mother from Evington, will bail out of a plane on 7 July 2012 to raise money for Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC), which provides free ‘home away from home’ accommodation to families with children in hospital. Kit resolved to raise money for RMHC after she stayed in its Birmingham House while her son, Ekam, was being treated at the nearby Birmingham Children’s Hospital for a serious illness. Kit’s high-altitude adventure, in which she will jump out of a plane at 13,000 feet, will be the latest in a long line of fundraising exploits. A serial fundraiser and charity donor, Kit has previously volunteered to encourage people to join the stem cell donor register, raised money for Leicester Royal Infirmary, and shall be taking part in a charity run with her family for Sports Relief in March. Speaking about her skydive Kit says, “Jumping out of a plane is not something I decided to undertake lightly and it will test my courage to its limits. I couldn’t be doing it for a better cause, as without the help of Ronald McDonald House Charities my son’s illness would have been even more difficult to cope with.” Kit has set up a JustGiving page for donations at: To find out more about Ronald McDonald House Charities, or to make a donation, please visit www.

34 34

The Rainbows Challenge Take to the road, take to the water, or take to the hills! Whether you want to go to great lengths or do something more modest, Rainbows Hospice for Children and Young People has a challenge for you! Intrepid fundraisers can visit challenges to find a suitable challenge. With almost 30 challenges listed there should be something for anyone who wants to get involved. Walkers can do the Walk of Life on 27 May, as part of Children’s Hospice Week; runners can take part in The Great North Run on 16 September; skydivers can leap out of a plane at a time to suit and for those looking for something more extreme, there’s the chance to climb Kilimanjaro next January. Those with a taste for travel might also be interested in challenges in Brazil, Spain, Sweden and even the Sahara Desert. Katie Baxter, Community & Events Manager at Rainbows, said: “Rainbows challenge events raised more than £200,000 for the charity last year. Challenges can be undertaken by individuals or groups, so why not get your work colleagues or sports team mates involved too? The Cooper Parry Business Team Challenge to run the Derby 10K on 2 April is a great way to raise money and prove your fitness within the business community.” For further information on Rainbows Challenge events, please contact the Rainbows fundraising team on 0800 952 1133 or


Leicester Mercury Sports Awards The East Midlands finest sporting talent were on show at a glamorous ceremony on Thursday 19th January when the prestigious Leicester Mercury Sports Awards took place at Welford Road Stadium, the home of Leicester Tigers. The evening, organised for the first time by Costock based company Champions (UK) Plc was generously supported by a wide range of local and national businesses and was a wonderful celebration of sporting achievement across the region.

Snooker legend Willie Thorne and TV weather presenter Emma Jesson hosted the evening, while special guests including Leicester City legend Alan Birchenall MBE, Leicester Tigers stars Geordan Murphy and Toby Flood and Leicestershire Cricket captain Matthew Hoggard MBE presented awards to winners of the 14 categories. Guests attending the evening also enjoyed entertainment from soul singer and X Factor star Andy Abraham who performed a collection of classic songs as well as tracks from his forthcoming album ‘Remember When’, which is due to be released in March 2012.

SPORTSMAN of the year Mark Selby (snooker) SPORTSWOMAN of the year Gemma Steel (athletics) TEAM of the year Leicestershire Foxes (cricket) COACH of the year Adam Stevens (football) CLUB of the year City of Leicester Swimming Club UNDER 19 TEAM Lancaster School under-15 football team YOUNG SPORTSMAN George Ford (rugby) YOUNG SPORTSWOMAN Lucy Garner (cycling) JUNIOR SPORTSMAN Ben Dijkstra (athletics) JUNIOR SPORTSWOMAN Harriet Cooper (swimming) COMMUNITY Lynn Moore (netball) ACTIVE4LIFE Beverley Hooper (athletics) NEVILLE HAMILTON AWARD Leicester’s Magnificent Seven (The Special Olympic World Games medal winners) LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT

Graham Cross (football & cricket)


image supplied by next


KID’S rOOMS from A BABy’s first nursery to A teenAger’s Bedroom, deCoratinG a room For your younG CHiLd or toddLer Can be a triCky Look to Get riGHt. here Are A few tiPs to heLP you get toP mArks!


rom a baby’s first nursery to a teenager’s bedroom, decorating a room for your young child or toddler can be a tricky look to get right. Here are a few tips to help you get top marks!

make it personaL

The first rule is to let your child put their own stamp on the decorating scheme and they will be more likely to take care of it! Think about the things they enjoy and their hobbies and try to incorporate some of these within the scheme.

Carley Rimmer Fusion Interior Projects Any topic you would like covered please contact me on

the first ruLe is to Let your chiLd Put their own stAmP on the decorAting scheme


Children grow out of the latest fads as quickly as their first pair of shoes, so rather than decorating an entire room in Peppa Pig, choose a neutral backdrop and introduce colour with textiles, graphic wall stickers and fun accessories. A feature wall in bright, lively wallpaper is also an easy way to change a toddler’s bedroom into a young child’s room.



choose A neutrA BAckdroP L A introduC nd CoLour w e it textiLes H

Think about the longevity of the pieces you buy. For example, fresh, clean, contemporary white painted furniture can work equally as well in a toddler’s bedroom as it would in an older child’s bedroom and therefore will last longer. The accessories you subsequently choose help make the room more specific and personal.


FinisHinG touCHes

Store toys in a variety of Murals and wall stickers containers, according to can create a fun focal point their size. Combine seein a kid’s room. through plastic storage crates, trunks and toy boxes if your chiLdren with tubs, baskets, overshAre A room, sPAce door organisers and minicAn Be PersonALised drawers. Categorise things By speLLinG out so that they make sense tHeir names witH to your child and arrange Funky LetterinG so them so that they’re easy to thAt they eAch hAve take out and put away. their own dedicAted


Dimmer switches are perfect for checking on a sleeping toddler and can be left on low for an infant who’s afraid of the dark. A glowing lamp or nightlight is also a good idea, but make sure to keep it out of reach. Fairy lights are an easy way to add a magical touch – string twinkling lights round a mirror for a little girl, or pin up a net of lights to create a personal cosmos for a budding spaceman.


Mirrors are a great way to create light and the feeling of more space, but make sure they are positioned well and out of the reach of little hands. Finally introduce retro style pieces such as a Louis ghost chair, the ultimate in cool accessories.

Butterfly fleur drawers, Matalan, £8

‘is in the air . .


Pomponette Home Boutique


TEL: 01162620573

Evans Fireplace Centre PleASe viSit our webSite to see our natural, hand carved stone fireplaces. l



Showing our range of Natural Stone Fireplaces, Wood Surrounds, Marble, Casts and Tiles. Gas, Electric & Solid Fuel Fires and Stoves. All Fireside Accessories. Survey & Fitting Service Available

Evans Fireplace Centre

1159 Melton Road, Syston, Leicester, LE7 2JS


0116 2600772

The Middleton (2010 collection)

Mon - Fri 9.00am - 5.30pm, Saturday 9.00am - 5.00pm, Sunday 11.00am - 2.00pm Bank Holidays 10.00am - 4.00pm



john fowkes Architects

was established in 2011 in the Vale of Belvoir village of Long Clawson. The practice which operates throughout Leicestershire and Rutland, has quickly gained a reputation for combining stylish design work, with a high quality and discreet service.

john himseLf hAs twenty years oF experienCe As An Architect in PrivAte PrActice, working on A rAnge of comPLex AwArd winning Projects. He has also designed a number of contemporary new build houses, along with restoration projects at historic country houses. Whether you intend to construct a new building, expand your current property or adapt an existing structure, jfA provides a service tailored to meet your needs. From grand-designs and one-off projects, to small-works, extensions, garden-rooms, bespoke kitchens and stylish bathrooms; no project is too small.


The jfA service spans every stage of the development process including initial consultation, sketches for approval, followed by the design work and a Planning Application. Once planning approval is in place, they’ll prepare a building contract and construction drawings for selected builders to cost. When construction is underway, they’ll monitor the builder’s work in terms of ensuring they’re meeting the required standards, timescales and budget. What’s more to ensure their high level of service is maintained, jfA’s projects are typically based within 50 miles of the office enabling John and his associates to reach the location within an hour should any issues arise on site.

Have a proJeCt in mind?

john would be delighted to hear from you. the initial consultation is free of charge and without obligation. for further details contact 01664 820489 or

J Fowkes DipArch RIBA Design Director -

Residential and Grand Designs Complete house restorations Small works and extensions Conservation and Listed Buildings

FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION Throughout Leicestershire and Rutland

Chestnut House East End Long Clawson Vale of Belvoir LE14 4NG

01664 820 489 07585 448 391

Showroom OPEN NOW Our new showroom is over 4 times bigger, it has undergone extensive renovation and has got both bathroom & kitchen displays for you to peruse. Come and have a look for yourself

OAKLAND ~interior specialists~

0116 2772252 | 7-11 Welford Rd | Blaby (Village Centre) | LE8 4FT

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PRePARIng TO SeLL In 2012

the nAtionwide house Price index toLd us thAt house Prices rose By 1% LAst yeAr, whiLst the hALifAx house Price index suggested A 1.3% fALL.


or 2012, some commentators claim house prices are set to fall; others believe the market will remain stable. And whilst some property forecasters suggest a fall in house prices will be positive for first time buyers, making property more affordable, others believe that a fall in prices will make banks less willing to lend and make it even more difficult for first time buyers to get mortgages.

so if the experts Can’t aGree on the outLook of the mArket, whAt cAn we Be certAin of in 2012? Peter Wyatt Fothergill Wyatt estate Agents If you wish me to cover anything specific please feel free to email me at:


1 2 3 4 5

1% rise nationwide House

1.3% fall Halifax House price index

price index

Price and market activity will vary by area and locality. Couples will disagree on what they are looking for from their dream home. The children will fight over who gets the biggest bedroom. Leicestershire has desirable suburbs and villages which continue to maintain stable prices. There is significant demand in desirable areas awaiting new, quality houses to offer more choice to the market.

Basically in just the same way that the economy needs us to spend in order to grow, the housing market needs your properties to allow for house price growth. Confidence is the key to the market so why should sellers look forward to this year and how should they approach it? Ultimately be confident in the Leicestershire market and find an agent that not only understands what each sector demands, but that is committed to taking the time to understand not only your requirements but those of potential purchasers.

halifax and nationwide house Price index

seLLers Look forwArd to this yeAr And How sHouLd tHey approaCH it? priced property will be met with active purchasers  well – talk to your agent about best pricing for your target market.

rates are expected to remain low and with  interest more mortgage products available, purchasers have

had another year to save their deposits and are ready to buy.

quality housing in key areas is always in demand  good – find out what your agent does to access your target market and how they work best for you.

want uncomplicated chains so sellers and  Purchasers agents alike will be motivated to get sales moving. homes will stand out from the crowd  well-presented – take the time to make those repairs, touch up the decor and remove the clutter.

rooms and en suites are fashionable, practical  dressing and highly desirable in the current market for

 

properties of all sizes.

gardens are increasingly scarce and important assets. off road parking provides a premium, whether it is single spaces, garages or driveways.

Stuff_ad_104x152mm:Layout 1 20/01/2012 11:44 Page 1

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Fire surrounds Fire fitting service

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A well established upholstery company

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We are able to upholster most things from furniture, boats and cars. We can make or recover headboards, footstools and ottomans to customers own specifications. As well as being able to order from a wide range of fabrics, we also stock PVC oilcloths for sale by the metre. In addition we offer restoration services for wooden furniture, including french polishing and repairs on leather.

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BE DIFFERENT. No two kitchens are the same. Yours will be unique. A one off that we create for you. Simple forms, new materials, new designs to accommodate your living style, whilst still providing uncompromising quality, precision manufacture with outstanding craftsmenship and design.





at our Leicester showroom, a truly inspirational collection

Dewhirst Kitchens as a member of the KBSA, has a full

of 24 displays over 3 floors with the very latest in traditional & contemporary designs.

deposits, advance payments and work in progress.


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Pretty And Practical Storage For A Rural Family Home Heart Hall Storage Bench by The Orchard


107 A/B Hinckley Road // Leicester, LE3 OTD

0116 233 0303 Mon - Sat 9 - 5 // Sun 11 - 4

DISCOVER From our “Old ONE OF LE ICESTER’S English Painted” BEST KEP T SHOPPING collection; locally SECRETS. hand made, bespoke furniture comes this, our Heart Hall Storage Bench. Perfect in the hallway or porch of a busy family home.

To kick off the new year we are offering Urban Fox readers 15% off

our normal retail price of £175 for this item until the end of February. (offer closes midnight Feb 29th)

To order and see the rest of our collection of handmade and imported furniture and homewares visit our showroom in Stoughton by the Cow & Plough pub, visit our website or call us on 0116 326 0208 and Quote Heart15 to take advantage of the discount on the benches whilst available.



visit us and see them on display in our showroom at Leicester Road, Lutterworth TEL 01455 552 552

Stoughton Grange, Gartree Road, Oadby, Leicestershire, LE2 2FB


chIlD’S PLAY i think my parents Gave up on tHe prospeCt oF HavinG a weLL-estabLisHed Garden when my Brother And i were growing uP.


ou could virtually guarantee the moment that a plant broke into flower, some form of ball would find its way to decapitate it. But if you do not want to sacrifice all prospect of having a garden for the next decade or two then here are a few tips to help you achieve this.


Obviously the design of the garden completely depends on what age your children are and what size your garden is but either way the space should be designed to work for all of you.


Usually the number one priority is that the play area can be seen from the house so that any children playing are easily visible. However,


this should not mean sacrificing height or interest in order that a good line of sight can be achieved.


Clear stemmed trees are great for a number of reasons. They form natural dividing points within the garden and they are great places from which to hang a swing.

Chris Gutteridge Second nature Please feel free to email me at:



Try to maintain a large lawn area as it’s essential for family games. You will tend to find that by doing this first the other areas of the garden work themselves out.


Consider leaving an area at the back of the garden for the creation of a den or even erect some walls for drawing on. If this is not possible get some chalk and your children can draw on your paving slabs. It’s fun for them and easily washed off afterwards.


Large patios provide great space to play but they can also be good places to grow a few vegetables in large pots. The great thing about this is it’s something that can be done together as a family. If your patio is near the house then it is easily accessible and visible from indoors.

uLtimAteLy desiGninG Gardens For CHiLdren is immense Fun, As it gives you the oPPortunity to Become A chiLd AgAin.


In terms of planting, use lots of grasses in bulk as they are resilient and fun to touch. Something like Stipa tenuissima is perfect for child friendly spaces. If you want flowers then look to grow in areas away from flying balls or plant them amongst more robust plants for protection.

You’re sweet, your smiles the best, your laugh bring flutters to my chest. You’re gorgeous, kind and smart as well, I like your walk and how you smell like a rose or maybe lilies, you make me feel all warm and silly. I say you’re summer and that’s no lie, your sight brings blue into my sky. I am glad I finally got the nerve to ask if your heart I had earned, so here’s to you on Valentine’s Day. Anon.


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did you mAke A new yeAr’s resoLution? whether it wAs Losing weight, beinG more orGanised, spendinG more time witH FamiLy And friends or getting fit; how mAny of you Are stiLL committed to Achieving your goAL?


f your resolution is already broken, you’re not alone, as statistically most people abandon their resolution by the 9th January. But even if you’ve already swapped your gym membership for nights in front of the TV, there is still an opportunity for you to get financially fit in 2012!

evaLuate your montHLy outGoinGs

The mortgage is the biggest monthly expense for the vast majority of people, and making sure that the rate you’re paying is competitive is basic common sense. Maybe you’re paying too much for gas and electricity or have signed up for too many

Matthew walne director Santorini financial Planning ltd

a lot more in the future. Whether it’s university tuition fees, a first car, your daughter’s wedding or the deposit on a house, there is only one way for the numbers to go and that’s up!

Sky TV packages. Take a look at your outgoings and make positive changes where you can. review your LiFe Cover Many people don’t know the answer to questions like

start savinG For yourseLF

‘HoW MucH Life coVer Do i neeD?’ ‘HoW MucH Do i HAVe?’ ‘DoeS it incLuDe criticAL iLLneSS coVer?’ no-one likes to think about the possibility of being seriously ill or dying, and therefore we tend to neglect our protection policies. However suitable life cover is an absolute priority, especially if you have children.

start savinG For your CHiLdren However much you’ve just spent on Christmas presents, your children are going to cost you

What’s true for the children is equally true for yourself; if there’s a specific savings target you have in mind, or whether you simply need to save for the proverbial ‘rainy day,’ the earlier you start to save the easier it is to achieve your goal.

review your pensions From previous empLoyment

Many people have pensions left over from previous jobs, and despite various government initiatives aimed at

simplifying the system they still don’t have an accurate idea of how much is in their pension ‘pot’ or what it will buy them in the future. good pension planning is impossible without knowing the position you’re starting from.

make a wiLL

Make sure that you have an up to date will. The consequences of dying ‘intestate’ (that is, without a will) can be severe, and with a simple will being relatively inexpensive it’s sensible to make sure that this area of your financial planning is kept up to date.

if you need more suPPort ‘workingout’ your finAnces, consider seeking the Advice of An exPerienced LifestyLe finAnciAL PLAnner, who’LL heLP you Lift thAt finAnciAL weight off your shouLders.

santorini financial Planning Ltd is an Appointed representative of financial Ltd which is authorised and regulated by the financial services Authority fsA number 540968 wil writing is not regulated by the financial services Authority


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MuMPreneur’S THe WORD:


the need for fLexiBLe working hours, time AwAy from the 9-5 And the oPPortunity to reseArch going it ALone Are certAinLy fActors in tHe expLosion oF ‘mumpreneurism’ seen in reCent years.


ut the real opportunity has been the advances in internet technologies, falling prices of increasingly powerful technology and the advent of social media. So, for all you budding mumpreneurs (and indeed dadpreneurs) here are The Urban Fox’s top tech tips for parental business opportunity success:

Mat Mabe operations Director Bulb Studios Digital Design agency

Get researCHinG:

Knowing your competitors is key and for most businesses at least, the internet provides the perfect platform for checking out who does what and finding your niche. Once you’ve confirmed there’s a gap for your USP, then you’ll need an equally unique moniker. Sites like www. allow you to check the uniqueness of your desired company name and guide you through a simple stepby-step process to get your limited company registered at Companies House.

Get onLine:

An online presence is essential for any startup, and getting that presence right is easier than ever. Registering your business domain name is a threestep, low-cost process with domain registrars such as 123-reg or easily. Once you have your domain, you’ll need a web presence – ideally one that’s both web and mobile compatible. If your model is dependent on the web


Get pLanninG:

there are a myriad of business planning tools and resources available online: 1 online communities of entrepreneurs such as ‘entrepreneur connect’ and ‘the inspired entrepreneur’ provide free advice and support. 2 is an invaluable resource for all aspects of business – information, support and legal compliance. 3 Planning software is readily available, from online resources like ‘LivePlan’ to native software like sage’s ‘Planning for Business’. the process is now simple and in many cases inexpensive for the diy entrepreneur. 4 most high street banks offer comprehensive online business planning tools, resources, media and support with no sign up or account required. writing a business plan has never been better supported, so make the most of what’s out there.

for sales or new business, then you’ll most likely want to speak to your friendly local web developer, but if you just need a web site as a shop window or for contact details and information, then online DIY site builders like moonfruit. com or can create something perfectly respectable for a few pounds and a bit of effort.

Get soCiaL:

The smart mumpreneur will maximise the

marketing potential of social networking – it’s not just about checking out old schoolmates and celebrities tweeting their wares, social media is the way to get your message out there. Don’t hard sell, tell a story, share an insight, add something and engage with the right people who will then eulogise on your behalf. teCHnoLoGy is tHe mumpreneur’s new best Friend, so Get teCHy and Get suCCessFuL!

Audi Leicester

Exciting News Leicester Audi, currently located on Blackbird road are relocating to Fosse Park in Spring 2012.

Leicester Audi 1 Blackbird Road, Leicester, LE4 0AH 0116 242 1300

The Urban Fox February Issue  

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