Page 1


Your free magazine for Aylesbury, Thame and the surrounding area

Take me home

w art w music w people w Motors w homes w gardens w theatre w food w fashion w Beauty w health w travel w

Dec/Jan 2016-17

Cover image: Kim Pedrick, director and yoga teacher at Evolve Health & Wellbeing, Princes Risborough See Page 15


Life in the fast lane

Rogue’s new track is a belter See our website at:

Tasting Britain

Thame deli is dish of delights

Beauty queen

Caron’s salons are leading the way Free local listings for events and businesses

Plus Katy, Heather, Naomi, Polly, Amanda, Janice, Cathy, Paul, Charlotte, Tracy, Sandra, Shaun, Rob, Alan and much, much more...

w Meal for two at The thatch, thame w Valentine’s Meal for two at Radhuni w w spa stay for two at whittlebury hall w a scruffs thermal dog jacket w


O ng EE C ooki st FR SEC ed b ber 1 O irm em PR nf ov

co e N ith or W bef

Eat, Drink & Dine

INVITES YOU TO CHRISTMAS AT THE CROWN Telephone: 01296 670216 E-mail:

Winslow Rd, Granborough, Buckinghamshire, MK18 3NJ Web:

The Crown, Winslow Road, Granborough, Buckinghamshire, MK18 3NP A mile south of Winslow, within 15 minutes of Aylesbury & Buckingham Within 30 minutes of Bicester, Leighton Buzzard and Milton Keynes

A charming village pub, attractively and sympathetically restored and now under new management, offering high quality dining in relaxed and comfortable surroundings, as found at our sister pub The Old Thatched Inn at Adstock

Pub open seven days - Monday: 5pm-10pm, Tuesday-Friday: 12-3pm & 5-11pm, Saturday: 12-11pm, Sunday: 12-8pm Food served: Tuesday-Saturday: 12-2.30pm & 6-9pm, Sunday: 12-5pm

Tel: 01296 670216 Web: Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


w w

English bespoke kitchens. If you’re looking for a high quality, good value kitchen with real quality craftsmanship, come and see our range of bespoke EnglishPDGH NLWFKHQV $W 5LGJHZD\ ZH R΍HU D FRPSOHWH VHUYLFH IURP PHDVXUHPHQWDQGGHVLJQWRȴWWLQJDQGȴQLVKLQJȂSOXVRXULQKRXVH team can do all the interior building work so you get consistency from beginning to end.

Our in-house team includes: ” Designers ” Plasterers ” Plumbers ” Builders ” Electricians ” Floor tilers


” Carpenters ” Decorators

We also offer a range of stunning German-engineered kitchens that are sleek, stylish and built to last. Call for a chat, arrange for a tour of our showroom near Thame or, for more information, visit our website. 01844 279900 RIDGEWAY KITCHENS | Rycote Lane, Milton Common, Oxfordshire OX9 2NZ | YO U R 4

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17








She’s waiting for the chance to feel like she matters. What are you waiting for? Been thinking about fostering? Now is the time to do it. And you really can, with support and training from the UK’s largest independent fostering agency. Find out more at our fostering information event.

Where & When FCA Wendover, Hale Court, Hale Road, Wendover, Buckinghamshire, HP22 6NJ Tuesday 22nd November, between 10.00am-12.00pm.

0800 023 4561

01296 622975 07711750917

F u n e r a l D i r e c to r s 21 -23 High Street, Wendover HP22 6DU Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


! R LI for ing 01 DAY you n 29 B r ow 6 RO 20 33 C 17 66 H 66 UR E


BY CO ACH 20 17 exciting holidays across 15 coun tries


Discover 120

Summer 2016

Great Getaways for 2017!

Crusad erHolid ays

@Crus Crusad aderHo er-Holid liday uk T 012 55 425 453 / 012 96




ANDRÉ RIEU – LIVE IN LILLE, FRANCE EASTER IN SIDMOUTH – 5 Days Fri 31st March 2017 Sun 30th £26 October 2016 Friday April 14th: £339. Insurance March 31st: 4 Days from £385 - Half Board, Fawlty Towers at the Andre Rieu Live In France We return to the popular Kingswood & Devoran Cat. 2 ticket, excursion to Ghent. which has bags of Victorian character, Orchard Hotel 4 Days Hotel,4-Star The King of Waltz André Hotel Lille. 3 nights in 4 Returns! star Novotel 2 Days



Single room supp.£15 Rieu back inhas France modern comforts and stunning sea views. The Single supplement extra His ismusic thewith a brand Lets take a trip back in time - we Insurance £23 new show! André Rieu will give you Kingswood has been under the same family whole audience all loved Fawlty Towers! Come what you’ve come to expect from his ownership for Each of the rooms are and join in over the fun60 as years. John Cleese waltzing in the aisles, performances: the maestro conducting unique in size and character from the cosy singles impersonator, Edmond Wells, which is why they callOrchestra his 60-piece Johann Strauss the only 6’ 7’’ Basil Fawlty look to large spacious family rooms, each individual in André Rieu the ‘King of and playing his world-famous and sound alike, walks the walk style and design. Many rooms with stunning views Stradivarius violin to create a colourful Waltz’ and, after more André Rieu and talks the talk! Typically the concert full of surprises. The repertoire over Lyme Bay. Includes: Half Board for 4 nights, than three decades Fawlty Towers theme night will ranges from romantic, emotional excursions to meeting Exeter and greeting on stage, André Rieu tickets are in higher demand start with ballads to the most gorgeous and & Exmouth & South the guests at reception. Basil than ever. The Dutch violinist formed the Johann celebrated waltzes. will announce dinner as Manuel Devon Scenic Drive. Strauss Orchestra in 1987, known for their upbeat Experience the magic of André Rieu at leads guests to dinner in time NB: restricted aperformances festive and memorable evening and of classical music, they have been honoured fashion. Sybil is her come see why André Rieu is one of joining points in credited with the revival ofthe the Viennese waltz. usual self, Manuel will feature most popular live acts in the world! Oxon,asBucks, a wasteBeds of space, whilst Basil & Devoran Hotel Kingswood and Herts will be giving the sort of service TLH Leisure Resort, Torquay one would expect from a top February 3rd: 4 days from £195 Torquay hotelier, all without DAY class TRIPS - January Treat yourselves to this fun weekend full of live mentioning the war! Room, Sat 14 Westfield Shopping – January Sales, £20 February 10, 2017 – 4 food days and fabulous leisure entertainment, good dinner & breakfast plus live Thu 19 Witney &from Millets Farm, The Feast of Saint Valentine into an occasion in which facilities. Meet some evolved of the Crusader/Motts stafflovers used entertainment ‘the staff’ . £20 to express their affection for each other by presenting flowers, offering Wed 25 Adinkerke (Tunnel), £42 and drivers, enjoy the included two half day This 2 day tour is from restricted joining points in confectionery and sending greeting cards. These days it is also the perfect Tue 31 Banbury & Bicester £20points. Bucks, Beds, Oxon and someAvenue, Hertfordshire excursions, raffle and quizzies. Limited space. opportunity to take your loved one away for a short romantic break. To ensure an unforgettable and enjoyable Valentine’s, we’ve come up with February ideas that&should you plan& your weekend. Your weekend includes a FISH CHIPhelp LUNCH KINKY BOOTS Wed 8 London Leisure Day, £22 special gift for the ladies so look for the Valentine. MATINÉE, London - January 11th: £69

Valentine Weekends - Love is in the air!


Inspired by a true story, Kinky Boots tells of Charlie Price who reluctantly inherits his father’s struggling Northampton shoe factory. Trying to save the familyWokefield business gains inspiration from Lola, Romantic Park,Charlie Berkshire with Snowdrop Walk (HB) an entertainer in need of some sturdy stilettos. The Warner – Gunton Hall, Suffolk - Top Tribute Party: Take That & Bruno Mars (HB) unlikely pair find they have more in common than Mill Rythe - Hayling Island – Moonlight & Roses (HB) they ever Amsterdam (BB) dreamed possible… when you change your mind, Romantic Paris (BB)you can change the world! Lunch included Kennedy’s restaurant. Luxembourg & Roman Trierat (HB)

Wed 8 Theatre - Dreamgirls, Matilda, 2017 Brochure Half A Sixpence, from £62 at ourMidland new style Safari Park, £33 Sat 11 LookWest 2017 brochure – out in Sun 12 Portsmouth, £22 September. Mon 13 Bond in Motion, London Film Museum & of Covent Garden, £34 Some our holidays £275 Mon 13 Covent Garden, £22 are already on our £259 website and don’t Tue 14 Cadbury World, £35 £219 forget the early £279Wed 15 Brighton, £22 booking discount £279Wed 15 Cite Europe & Adinkerke, £42 offer! £259Thur 16 London Museums, £22

Medieval Bruges (BB)


A Great Value Christmas present!

Visit to book now

For more information contact our reservations department on 01296 336666 Holidays:


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Day Trips:

4 Buckingham Street, Aylesbury, HP20 2LD Crusader Holiday Shop, 4 Buckingham Street, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP20 1BH Crusader Holidays, 13 Crusader Business Park, Stephenson Road West, Clacton, Essex, CO15 4HP Please see our current brochure for booking conditions and trading charter.

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Great rates Amazing results To advertise in Vale Life Magazine Call Charlie on 07702 006218

Spread the word across The Vale: see: for details

8 10 12 14 16 17 19 21 24 26 28 29

What’s your style personality?


Out of this world

Something for all


Life in the fast lane

Sweet smell of citrus


Just take your time

Have fun and achieve your goals


The Art of comfort

Get fit the Better way


Hot stuff

Way of the sword


S’no joke for wildlife

Fancy a Blast!?


Feed feathered friends

Positively hands on


Turn it up!

Year to remember


Not that Peter Puris

Beautiful year


Something in the Eyre

Time to relax


Ancient & modern

No more waxing


Bulmer’s back!


Say it with chocolate

How to find those clothes that suit Jukan’s shop is an Aladdin’s cave

Pomanders once the height of fashion 20 pages of health, fitness and beauty TLC is fit-tech heaven

Keeping fit with Kendo Kaso team get all intense Massage crew tap ancient remedies Thame audiologist is best in Europe Amanda pick Beauty Spot’s top of the pops! A spa stay at Whittlebury - there’s a thought! Would silky smooth for good suit you?

30 Beauty queen

Caron’s salons are leading the way

Get some me time at Hartwell Spa? New karting track is a real belter Introducing Nigel Grace

Polly’s preparing her winter retreat Flaming good fires for inside and out Make your garden a haven for the hungry Don’t give ‘em the bird, it’s seed they need! Paul reports from the local music scene Our new columnist is a right comedian Innovative NT production to play Waterside Indian Restaurant moves with the times Chef is buzzing at rare breed appointment Rumsey’s blend is a girl’s best friend!

You’ve really made the grade!


ell there’s been plenty going on these last few weeks. The Great British High Street awards culminated in an impressive second place for Thame. That’s second best High Street in the whole of Great Britain - pretty good going! Beaten only by Hebden Bridge, which doesn’t sound like a real place to me anyway. I think somebody’s entered a film set from an idyllic new BBC drama sponsored by John Lewis and crossing Doc Marten with Emmerdale and Mr Selfridge to create the perfect unspoilt, yet bustling and vibrant small town


ongratulations to the following Nov/Dec edition competition winners! Hopefully your prizes will have arrived by now, please let us know if not. Commiserations to those who weren’t so

shopping scenario, then borrowed a Hobbit village name from Lord of The Rings for ultimate enchantment. Hebden Bridge... it can’t be real... Anyway congratulations to the team involved in Thame’s campaign and to Thame Market Trader, Chris Hurdman, who was runner up in the Retail Market Champion awards. On the down side there’s news that Thame Food Festival is pulling out of the town centre for 2017 to have a bigger two day festival on Thame showground. I can imagine the arguments for the move

lucky - read on though for more competitions inside this edition, including the chance to win: A meal for two at The Thatch, Thame; A Scruffs Thermal Dog Jacket; A Valentine’s Day Meal for Two at Radhuni

but I think it’s a shame, as the atmosphere won’t be as good and it won’t work as well for town centre businesses and local residents. It will effectively lose its connection with the community. Talking about community, what a success for the Friars Team and the music loving community of Aylesbury! A kick start crowd funding campaign set up to raise £100,000 towards the cost of a statue of David Bowie to go under the arches at the bottom of Market Square, reached its target. Amazingly 747 backers pledged £115,199 in just 40 days to help

Indian Restaurant, Princes Risborough; Tickets to the new Glee Comedy Club; and An Escape & Spa Stay Plus for two at Whittlebury Hall. Last issue’s prizewinners were: How to Hygge Book: Katie Kann, Aylesbury

Tickets to Historic Automobile Fair & Auction: Penny Morris, High Wycombe; Gary Derbyshire, Aylesbury Tickets for the Travel Show: Lottie Aulton, Cheddington; Valerie Newby,

bring this project to life. Bowie’s world debuts of Hunky Dory and Ziggy Stardust were at Friars, Aylesbury and this statue, possibly the first Bowie statue in the world, will commemorate his connection with the town and put Aylesbury on the map in lots of new ways. There’s more fundraising to do though and Vale Life is teaming up with the Aylesbury Brewery Company in 2017 to produce a special fundraising beer - more in our next edition but any publicans interested, please get in touch! Happy reading!


Editor, Vale Life Magazine North Marston; Liz Ashley, Oakley Newby Teas Collection: Pepe Banuelos, Thame A meal for four at The Snug: Dani Ridgley, Tetsworth An Arckit: Len Tack, Thame

Vale Life Magazine is designed and published by Vale Life Magazine, 23 Glenham Road, Thame, Oxfordshire, OX9 3WD Telephone: 01844 261579 Mobile: 07702 006218 Website: Email: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of Vale Life. We cannot be held responsible for any inaccuracies, omissions or late changes. No part of this publication may be reproduced without the permission of the publishers. Printed in the UK by The Magazine Printing Company

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


with Katy Dyer

Personal stylist and fashion expert Katy scours our local boutiques and passes on tips and tricks for looking your best, plus the latest news on the high street trends

What’s your style personality?


Creative - White Stuff

Creative - M&S 8

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

hen it comes to personal style, the most important element to understand is your style personality. It is this that influences how you feel about wearing colour (or not), whether you prefer to be coordinated or eclectic and last but not least, why something feels really YOU. Before I go on, this is not about putting people into ‘boxes’ - far from it, we are all different, all unique. It’s much more about understanding why you like to dress like you do (and why sometimes that outfit you saw on someone else looks great, but just doesn’t feel quite right on you). Once you understand the basics of your style personality you will feel confident trying different brands or styles and indeed avoiding those that you have just never quite felt comfortable in and yes, I do mean that top that was a bargain in the January sales but is still hanging in your wardrobe unworn with the tag on!

Dramatic M&S

Dramatic M&S Romantic - Phase Eight

but because you have the flair to carry off this look. Some of your favourite pieces might include a coloured velvet jacket, a one-off piece of jewellery or a hand printed scarf.

Are you a creative type? Your outfit really is a work of art and you may well like to combine old or vintage with brand new high Romantic - M&S More dramatic? street finds. Perhaps The latest designer you enjoy customizing look or fashion trend and your own clothes to make them you are there. The aim for your unique or revel in finding the outfit is for it to look amazing. It perfect item at a market or vintage doesn’t really matter if the fit is a fair. Whatever you like, it will stand little snug or the hemline is long out - not because it is eccentric, enough to make walking a little

tricky (who cares, you can catch a cab!). You probably love shopping or finding the latest look - and you’ll prefer a glitzy shopping centre to the local high street. Your favourite

piece is your latest purchase, whether it’s a shirt or a smartphone, you’ll need to be the first one to have it. It’s typically a high-fashion, striking look - with accessories and hairstyle to match. Just don’t get carried away with that must-have piece that doesn’t go with anything else you own. Use colour to add a bit of drama when the occasion demands a more understated look.

Relaxed M&S

If you have a more romantic air about you you will love to take care of yourself. It’s tactile and luxurious

Classic - Next

Classic - Next

pieces that really appeal to you think velvet, silk and cashmere. For women and men floral or paisley patterns will more than likely feature prominently in your wardrobe. But it doesn’t have to be overt consider detailing in linings, inside cuffs and also pocket squares and Relaxed - White Stuff statement scarfs. An evening out is your chance to shine and express your personality - you will feel it’s and classic side to your style important to make time to create the personality, you know what you like perfect look for a special occasion. and will be prepared to spend a bit more time (and probably money) If you have a more traditional Continued on page 10

Sew Claire Dancewear & Accessories l Wide range of Ballet, Tap, Dance, Cheer & Gymnastic Clothing, Bags & Accessories l All types of Dance Shoes l Approved Pointe Shoe Specialist l We can also Personalise your Dancewear & Accessories for that perfect unique Christmas present

Sew Claire

Find us on Facebook or pop in to: 25 Duck Farm Court, Station Way, Aylesbury, HP20 2SQ Tel: 01296 706418 Email: Web:

Helen Grace Beautifully hand crafted stylish hats

Image Style Colour Corporate

Wardrobe Review Personal Shopping Group Consultations & Workshops

01844 872 025

and fascinators for all occasions To buy or hire Come and try on our wonderful hats and fascinators in the privacy of our studio in Shabbington Simply call for an appointment on 01844 201017 Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17



Column: Katy Dyer‘Style File’

Continued from page 9 to find it. Perhaps you are someone who buys two (or more) of an item when you find it fits well and suits you. Always well turned out and prepared, you may find it difficult to understand why others spend on what seem to be fads in clothing, and even your casual look will have an air of tradition and formality. Up your game in the style stakes by considering how you can include current trends into your existing wardrobes to give your look a contemporary edge. If the word that describes your style is relaxed (or you feel you don’t really have a style), you will feel best in clothes that are comfortable (and probably warm) and you will need to be able to move easily in them. Nothing scratchy, itchy or a little bit short. You may prefer more muted colourways and be more at home in sportswear than a suit. When the occasion demands a corporate look, you may well find this difficult and more than likely will opt for smart trousers and

Current/ Elegant M&S

Current/Elegant White Stuff a shirt rather than formal attire. Whilst comfort is the priority of those with this natural style, a little more effort is required for business and occasionwear (and yes, that includes ironing - probably not your favourite pastime) to find the perfect

look that is both appropriate and reflective of your style personality. None of the above quite sound like you? If your appearance and grooming standards are important to you and your clothing choices

appear effortless then you will have a current and elegant style. You appreciate quality and will (perhaps unconsciously) find you follow trends rather than fashion. You are probably that person who always has the perfect item in your wardrobe but perhaps you don’t even realise it. Understated glamour which is perfectly suited to your environment and role, clothes will be a measured purchase based on need rather than an emotional purchase based on wants. You may have recognised a little of yourself in one, two or more of these style personality descriptions but your style is uniquely yours. Identifying key traits and your clothing preferences you can save time and money whilst looking and feeling effortlessly good. l Katy Dyer is a style coach and corporate image consultant and works with people of all ages, stages and backgrounds to help them present themselves at their very best. Because when you look good, you feel good. Find out more at or simply call 01844 872 025.

India’s Golden Triangle With Ranthambore National Park

Escorted tour 10 days from £1,649* *Lead in applies to 29 September 2017 departure. Other departure dates available.

Delhi - Agra - Bharatpur - Sawai Madhopur - Ranthambore - Jaipur

All Titan holiday’s include; • Check-in service with Titan staff and porterage • Scheduled ights Titan’s VIP door-to-door travel service included on all Titan holidays† Call Adams Travel on 01296 873017 or email Excludes Scottish islands and Sark, where vehicle access is restricted. Home transfers are not included on Titan’s ‘Essential Collection’ holidays.


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

There are some shops you just can’t do without and residents of Bedgrove must thank their lucky stars for Impressions Cards and Gifts which seems to sell everything one could possibly need...


mpressions Cards and Gifts is a slightly misleading title, for although this Aylesbury store carries an excellent range of greetings cards for all occasions, it also doubles as a hardware, homestore, party shop, toy shop and haberdashery, selling all those useful little items that you so often run out of at the most inconvenient moment! Impressions also boasts some rather unique offerings in their helium balloons and the impressive Creative Express personalised gifts station, where you can instantly personalise a range of items from mugs (china or ceramic) to cards, photoframes, iphone covers, money boxes, cushions, candle holders and fabric cards, with your own photographs and message. You can copy a picture from your mobile phone or camera or even go online on the machine and download one from your Facebook page! If there’s a birthday or special occasion on the horizon Impressions do foil and latex balloons for different ages and anniversaries and character balloons for children. They can also design and install special balloon arrangements and decorations for parties and weddings. They have banners and party accessories, such as party balloon weights, party poppers, hats, cups, plates, serviettes, cake candles and confetti, which can be organised into a party package for you, depending on what you would like. Impressions is a family business run by the impressively named Ganeswarachandran Jukan - fortunately he is happy to be called Jukan! Originally from Sri Lanka, Jukan’s family took over the premises in 2007 and Jukan himself began running the store in

Personalised gifts

2011: “We focus on cards, gifts and party balloons,” he says, “but we also stock useful items that people may need around the home and garden, from cleaning products to paint and DIY tools, sewing and knitting supplies, kitchen items etc. The shop had been a hardware before and people were still coming in asking for things, so we have gradually expanded our range to cater for household items that people have been requesting. “We have a large choice of greetings cards - collections from about 17 different UK companies. They cover every occasion from weddings to birthdays, anniversaries, you name it! Something for all tastes and pockets too, from 99p up to £10 for a supersize one in a presentation box. We even have a range of local landscapes from a company called Cuckoo Fair, who specialise in cards featuring high quality reproductions of original watercolours by locally based artists.” If you are looking for inexpensive gifts there’s quite a choice, from vintage storage tins, to candles - including Heart & Home soy wax candles in an amazing variety of gorgeous


scents - cuddly toys such as Tatty Teddy and his Blue Nosed Friends or Heat Treats Cosy Toys Warmies - microwaveable soft toys you can warm up before cuddling! There’s ceramic money pots, kitchen ware and baking equipment, cosy Boofle socks (personalised for different people and occasions) books and toys... too much to mention here but pop in and Jukan will help you find what you are looking for. “I aim to stock good quality items and offer a high quality service,” says Jukan. “we run a loyalty card scheme for regular customers and hope to expand the business and open another store at some point and to start selling cards, balloons and gifts via our website.” l Impressions Cards & Gifts, 31 Jansel Square, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP21 7ET Tel: 01296 399908 E: W: Open: Mon-Fri: 8.30am to 5.30pm and Saturdays: 8.30am to 5pm

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17



Column: Nicky Gregory‘Curious World’

Sweet smell of citrus T he pomander, first mentioned in the 13th century, was widely used during the Middle Ages at the time of the Black Death, as people believed the pleasant scent could repel the disease in the air. The word ‘pomander’ originates from the French ‘pomme d’ambre’ or ‘apple of ambergris’, the wax substance used as a base in pomander recipes. Others take the phrase to mean ‘apple of amber’ or ‘golden apple’, as in the fragrant citrus fruits exchanged during holidays for good luck. Apart from warding off disease they helped alleviate bad smells. A pierced object filled with perfumes, spices and ambergris, the pomander could be worn or carried. The most simple was made of wood and the most intricate of gold or silver set with precious stones. They were sometimes segmented, like an orange, with each piece for a different perfume and some were simply a bag of fragrant herbs. The Victorians made pomanders

C1880 Chinese silver and pearl fruit pomander

Nicky Gregory

Curious world

Georgian Silver Pomander C1790

your name, address and contact telephone number to: Winner to be notified by email.

16th Century Gold and silver Pomander said to have belonged to Mary Queen of Scots

fashionable. They used them to decorate their homes, as a closet or drawer perfume to get rid of insects, in wedding bouquets and as Christmas decorations. The tradition of pomanders at Christmas is with us today as they are hung on Christmas Trees, woven into garlands and used to decorate the house. Throughout history the importance of scent has never been denied. Mystical and powerful, scent was an offering, a force of attraction and a curse!


Pomanders made with oranges, cloves and oils and tied with a golden ribbon were used as a recovery charm against witchcraft. This combination is a good basis for your Christmas Pomander, just use your imagination. Our Nov/Dec mystery object was a bread toasting fork! Can you guess what this one, right, is? The prize for the winner chosen from correct answers is a £10 Gift Voucher for Antiques at Wendover. Email your answers along with

l Nicky Gregory is the owner of Antiques@Wendover, The Old Post Office, 25 High Street, Wendover, Bucks, HP22 6DU Tel: 01296 625335 Email: Web:

Mystery object

Make it a

Happy Christmas

A Dateline ANTIQUES CENTRE Est. 1987 A QUALITY ANTIQUES CENTRE offering town and country antiques in a Tudor, brick and timber house, with wall paintings and inglenook fireplaces. Park in the Courtyard at the rear, where you will find Garden Antiques, a Tea Shop, the Barn Courtyard Shops and an Artist’s Studio. We are open every day from 10am to 5.30pm, Monday to Saturday and from 11am to 5pm, Sundays and Bank Holidays.

Reprint of an original Elvis Presley 1956 Show Poster - £75 The Old Post Office, 25 High Street, Wendover, Bucks, HP22 6DU Tel: 01296 625335 Email: Website: 12

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Hester Clarke Fine Jewellers

Independent Family Jewellers since 1892 Goldsmiths House 10-14 Cambridge Street Aylesbury Bucks HP20 1RS

01296 482963

WIN a cosy Scruffs Thermal Dog Jacket!


he Scruffs Thermal Dog Jacket is waterproof and breathable and will keep your pet warm on those chilly winter walks. The soft shell exterior gives excellent protection against wind and rain, while retaining its breathable qualities. The reflective technology lining improves the dog jacket’s thermal properties, without the use of hollow fibre or synthetic down associated with conventional jackets. This means the jacket is lighter and less restrictive to wear, resulting in improved movement and agility and more comfort than a conventional thermal jacket, plus there’s a micro-fleece turtleneck collar and chest pad for enhanced comfort and fit, girth adjustment, hind leg straps and reflective

piping and logo to aid visibility at night The jacket, which is machine washable, comes in nine sizes and is available to buy direct from (Prices depend on size, starting from £18.99) If you’d like to be in with a chance of winning a Scruffs Thermal Dog Jacket, email your name, address and telephone number, plus jacket size, along with the answer to the following question, to: How many sizes does the dog jacket come in? Winner to be drawn at random from correct entries and notified by email by Jan 20th, 2017. l

LONG CRENDON LONG CRENDON LONG CRENDON CRENDON Notley Tythe Barn is LONG a beautiful, fully restored 12th-century barn

Notley Tythe Barn is a beautiful, fully restored 12th-century barn in picturesque gardens within 500 acres of pasture barn land at the Notleyset Tythe Barn isBarn a beautiful, fully restored 12th-century Notley Tythe is a beautiful, fully restored 12th-century barn set in picturesque gardens within 500 acres of pasture land at the foot of the Chiltern Hills. It500 is an elegant and unique venue for set in picturesque gardens within acres pasture land atland the at the set in picturesque gardens within 500 of acres of pasture foot of the Chiltern Hills. It is an elegant and unique venue for receptions, parties, celebrations and other special foot ofweddings, the of Chiltern Hills. It is anIt elegant and unique venue forevents. foot the Chiltern Hills. is an elegant and unique venue for weddings, receptions, parties, celebrations and other special events. weddings, receptions, parties,parties, celebrations and other weddings, receptions, celebrations andspecial other special

Wedding Fayre Sunday 29th January, 11am to 3pm.

Emma Lucy Photography Emma Lucy Photography

Telephone 01844 201226 | Email Telephone 01844 201226 | Email Notley Farm, Chearsley Road, Long Crendon, Telephone 01844 201226 | Email Telephone 01844 201226 | Email Notley Farm, Chearsley Road, Long Crendon, Nr. Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP18 9ER Nr. Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP18 9ER NotleyNotley Farm, Farm, Chearsley Road, Road, Long Crendon, Chearsley Long Crendon, Nr. Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP18 HP18 9ER 9ER Nr. Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire,

Emma Lucy Photography Emma Lucy Photography

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Health & Fitness

At times, have you felt your eating has not been truly in control? Have you found it difficult to get to a weight that you are happy with and maintain it? Have you looked towards food as a way of coping with relationships, low self esteem, situations that arise, tiredness, loneliness, sadness or stress?

Keith Crane The Fit Coach

Do you constantly look in the mirror? Evaluating how you look? Comparing yourself to others?

Do you avoid some foods entirely? And then crave the foods you have been avoiding? Would you like to be more in control of your food?

Keith Crane, The Fit Coach, offers a 24/7 Complete Support Package. To find out more he offers a FREE, No Obligation Consultation. Call 07751 840 262 today to discuss your weight loss goals.

GET in our fun and friendly programme of physical activities taking place across Aylesbury Vale!

Doing more exercise and losing weight, regularly rank among the UK’s most popular New Year’s Resolutions. Danielle, from Better’s Thame Leisure Centre, has come up with ten top tips on how to kick start a New Year’s fitness regime and ensure you stick to it, while over the next few pages we’ve listed some local providers of health, fitness, beauty and wellbeing activities and services to try in 2017...


urn to page 16 for details of the newly refurbished Thame Leisure Centre gym and a whole host of fun activities and sports that take place at the Leisure Centre for all ages and abilities? And if you are thinking of becoming more active in 2017, here are Danielle ten top tips on how to kick start an achievable New Year’s fitness regime and ensure you stick to it. 1. Set goals Start with simple goals and then progress to longer-term goals. Remember to make these realistic and achievable. It’s easy to get frustrated and give up if you are too ambitious in the early days. For example, if you haven’t exercised in a while, a short-term goal might be to walk 10 minutes a day five days a week. An intermediate goal might be to walk 30 minutes five days a week. A long-term goal could be to complete a 5K walk. 2. Make it fun Find sports or activities that you enjoy, then vary the routine to keep you on your toes. If you’re not enjoying your workouts, try something different. Join a tennis, squash or running club or take a Zumba or circuits class. Try something new and you might discover your hidden athletic talent. 3. Make it part of your daily routine If it’s hard to find time for exercise, don’t fall back on excuses. Schedule workouts as you would any other important activity. You can also slip in physical activity throughout the day. Take the stairs instead of the lift. Walk to the shops rather than taking the car. Take a walk during your lunch break. Pedal a stationary bike or do strength training exercises while you watch TV at night. 4. Create a playlist Working out to music can be a great motivator. So create a new playlist that you can work out to. Upload songs to your iPod or phone that increase in speed. Work out to a high-tempo beat to give yourself

Find out more at or call 01296 585024

Lots 14

in 2017 g in t r a t s s n io of sess t a place,

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

mething a Ladies, find so to suit you time and cost

Gibbins (MAR MIFPA) Ros Ros Gibbins (MAR MIFPA)

Reflexology, Aromatherapy & Reflexology, Aromatherapy & Hot Stone treatments in Thame Hot Stones TREATMENTS IN THAME Treatments can help regulate Ros Gibbins (MAR MIFPA) and balance many conditions including: Reflexology, Aromatherapy & 07938 633 679 Anxiety, Stress, PMT and Menopause Hot help Stones Treatments can regulate and balance. Many

Ros TREATMENTS IN consultation THAME(MAR MIFPA) Please call for aGibbins free conditions, Reflexology, Aromatherapy & Anxiety, Stress, PMT, Menopause Tel: 07938 633 679 07938 633 679Stones Call for a Hot free consultation IN THAME Treatments can helpTREATMENTS regulate and balance. Many conditions, 07938 633 679 Anxiety, Stress, PMT, Menopause Treatments can help regulate and balance. Many Call for a free consultation conditions, Anxiety, Stress, PMT, Menopause

Health & Fitness

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

9. Reward yourself After each exercise session, take a few minutes to savour the good feelings that exercise gives you. This type of internal reward can help you make a long-term commitment to regular exercise. External rewards can help, too. When you reach a longer range goal, treat yourself to something fun but healthy, for example a new pair of trainers or some new iTunes to work out too. 10. Be flexible If you’re too busy to work out or simply don’t feel up to it, take a day or two off. Be gentle with yourself if you need a break. The important thing is to get back on track as soon as you can.

Make exercise part of your routine maximum motivation and slow the beat for stretching and cooling off. 5. Put it on paper Are you hoping to lose weight? Boost your energy? Sleep better? Or manage a chronic health condition? Whatever your primary aim write down your goals. Seeing the benefits of regular exercise and writing your goals down on paper can help you stay motivated and monitor your achievements. 6. Support a good cause Signing up to do a charity walk or taking on a marathon that will raise money for a good cause is a great way to ensure that you don’t give up at the first sign of your motivation disappearing. You will also feel that you’ve accomplished two goals in one and once you’ve sent off the application form there’s no going back. 7. Join forces with friends You’re not in this alone. Invite friends or colleagues to join you when you exercise. Work out with your partner, friends or family. Play soccer with your kids. Organise a group of colleagues to take fitness classes. Research shows that exercising in company can help you stay motivated and maintain a fitness regime over the longer term. 8. Say no to sports drinks Unless you are a professional athlete, they are not necessary and sports drinks are loaded with extra sugar and unnecessary calories. Drinking plenty of water is the best way to stay hydrated when working out.

‘Movement for every body’ Welcoming, modern studio offering small group yoga & pilates classes, for all ages & abilities, in friendly, relaxing, professional environment Cross Keys House, New Road, Princes Risborough, Bucks, HP27 0LF Tel: 07793 387272 Email: Website:

Danielle at Better’s Thames Leisure Centre adds: “The road to fitness is paved with good intentions, but sometimes it’s hard to know how to take the first steps. Sticking to these simple ten tips will help you get your New Year’s fitness programme moving. “It’s also important to remember that everyone suffers setbacks and loss of motivation. The crucial thing is to get back on track if things go wrong, or if you miss a few sessions. It’s the long-term goals that are the important ones.” l Better leisure centres in South Oxfordshire; offer a range of sports facilities, clubs and group exercise classes to suit all age groups and abilities. For more information visit:

Over 1,000 people have already tried a free session, what are you waiting for ? We have thousands of activities available to help get you a little more active. Register at for a voucher to get your first session free

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Health & Fitness

This year, get fit the Better way


f you are looking for somewhere to realise your fitness ambitions for 2017 then Thame Leisure Centre is situated on the edge of town next to Lord Williams’s Upper School, with on site parking and bus stops directly outside. It’s a popular facility with a recently refurbished, fully equipped, air-conditioned gym stacked with the latest fitness equipment. You can choose from cardiovascular machines such as treadmills, steppers, cross-trainers and rowers, resistance equipment including free weights and kettlebells plus dedicated stretching areas and fitness aids such as Swiss balls. The centre also boasts a 25m swimming pool with sessions for fitness and fun, a toddler pool, a 4 court badminton sports hall with smart, state-of-the-art playing surface, a dance studio offering a wide range of fitness classes and a spinning studio. There are junior sports and leisure activities too plus a crèche for children up to 5 years. In the recently refurbed spin studio, 22 brand new bikes await, with more on the way as classes are proving so popular. You can link to the brand new bikes and the Technogym

The TLC gym cardiovascular equipment with a clever ‘MyWellness ‘ app. Download it for free and connect with the Technogym equipment to monitor your progress and follow training regimes. The app can construct training schedules for you and will even programme the Technogym equipment to test you by recreating an actual challenge you might wish to try, such as the route of the New York Marathon! The cardio machines can be linked if you’d like to race your friends or you can race against one of your previous performances and try to better it. Another handy improvement is that you can now pre-programme

The TLC Spinning room

set speeds into your treadmill so you can slow by a set amount with a single click rather than trying to toggle up and down while running. For spinning classes there’s an impressive screen showing routes and the progress each bike is making. It’s proved very popular particularly with serious spinners! A dance studio revamp is taking place before Christmas. This is the venue for classes such as Pilates, Tai Chi, Body Combat, Zumba and

the 50+ workouts. A full timetable is available from reception. If you’re aiming for the gym you’ll start with an induction, so the fitness instructors can check you are well enough to train, put together a workout to suit you and give you advice about other activities the centre may offer which could help you achieve your fitness goals. Re-focus sessions are available to you at any time, when fitness instructors will mix up your fitness programme to keep it fresh and motivate you. Keeping your workout more varied and challenging will actually keep you much fitter? TLC offers a wide range of membership options from Pay and Play, to monthly or annual Prepaid memberships. They don’t tie you in to a long term contract either. You can go for all inclusive, to cover a wide range of activities or be more specific with just a pool or racquets membership. Maybe go for a single month’s trial membership to start with? See the website or pop in for details.

l Thame Leisure Centre, Oxford Road, Thame, Oxfordshire, OX9 2BB T: 01844 215607 E: W:

NO JOINING FEE THIS JANUARY THAME LEISURE CENTRE Walk, run, swim, or cycle yourself healthy with no contract and no joining fee until 31st January.

Join today at In partnership with

District Council Terms and conditions apply, visit for details. Better is a registered trademark and trading name of GLL (Greenwich Leisure Limited), a charitable social enterprise and registered society under the Co-operative & Community Benefit & Societies Act 2014 registration no. 27793R. Registered office: Middlegate House, The Royal Arsenal, London, SE18 6SX. Inland Revenue Charity no: XR43398


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17 GLL_Globals_2016_Jan_ThameLeisure_190x125mm_FV.indd 1

08/12/2015 10:02


Column: Fitness Focus with Chris Bowden

Health & Fitness

The way of the sword


riginating from Japan, Kendo means ‘the way of the sword’. If you’ve ever seen The Last Samurai you’ll have an idea of its roots, but Kendo as a martial art didn’t begin until after the Second World War. Under the American occupation of Japan, martial training was forbidden but many people practiced their sword skills in secret and the martial art developed for self-improvement through the study of swordsmanship rather than purely as the skill of killing with a sword! Kendo involves combat wearing traditionally styled clothing and protective armour and relies on skill rather than brute strength. It’s a lot of fun and practitioners can be male or female and from 8 to 80 years of age. Kendo is steeped in Japanese culture, so there is a lot to be discovered in addition to learning to fight with a sword and its a friendly sport. Being about self-improvement you don’t get angry at your opponent, you thank

Kendo him for showing your weakness, so helping you to improve. Many practitioners are very sociable and like to do ‘extra training’ at the second dojo (the pub). Kendo trains you physically while improving your mind and personality too. Your peers guide you and practice with you, so you need to get along. I quickly learnt that although I do not like to lose I have no one else to blame, so I must thank my opponent for showing my weakness. This attitude allows you to get over yourself and improve, rather than lay the blame at someone else’s door. At Ichi ByoShi Kendo Club in

Aylesbury classes comprise of practice swings and exercises to improve co-ordination, fitness and accuracy as well as various forms of sparring and set piece scenarios known as Kata. Different people like different aspects of the training, some preferring to develop Kata skills while others like the physicality of armoured combat. There are competitions in both disciplines for practitioners to work towards. We also work towards individual improvement via grading - a similar system to Karate, Judo or Taekwondo - however there is no visual representation of grade, and so the first you will learn of someone’s ability is when you fight. I first tried Kendo while living in South Korea, where it is very popular and the moment I began to swing the bamboo sword I was reminded of all the sword fascinations I had as a child, such as: He-man, Thundercats and Star Wars - lightsabre duelling was based on Kendo. I enjoyed it and

Chris Bowden Kendo

decided I must become as good as I could, so I practiced every day and entered competitions. When I returned to the UK I competed here too and in Europe. l Chris Bowden is a 4th Dan. He represents GB and recently won a bronze in the ‘4 Nations’ contest. He is working towards the European championships and then the World championships in Korea, where his journey began. Chris instructs at Ichi ByoShi Kendo Club. T: 01296 658582 E: W: Seniors meet on Thursdays at Aylesbury High School & Juniors, Saturdays, Sportspace Hemel Hempstead.

Emma Morgan Yoga

Tel: 07709 428629


l Fishing Supplies l Air Guns Walking Footwear/Clothing l Football Club Supplies l Badminton/Squash Rackets & Accessories l Same day Racket Stringing

Unit 9a, Duck Farm Court, Station Way, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP20 2SQ T: 01296 486613 E: W:

Daily classes in Thame, Long Crendon & Ashendon to help you relax & destress. Suitable for all abilities. Based on Traditional Hatha Yoga - classes are a combination of breathing techniques, relaxation & postures, with elements of strength, balance and flexibility. First Class Only £5! To book your space call: 07709 428629 or email: Corporate and private classes also available, call for details.






Health & Fitness

Column: Fitness Focus with Emma Barker

On yer bikes!


he Christmas Season is here, that time of year when we tend to eat more, drink more and ease off our fitness and wellness regimes, preferring a late night with a mince pie and mulled wine to a workout. As a Holistic Fitness & Wellness Coach, I see first hand every January the damage that Christmas stress and excess can cause, yet it doesn’t have to be that way. I’m a qualified Level 3 Personal Trainer and Indoor Cycling Instructor with various health and wellness accreditations. I help people, one-to-one or in small groups, achieve their fitness and wellness goals, creating healthy habits for life - here are my top 5 health & wellness habits for the Christmas Season: 1. Keep up/Start a fitness routine - don’t wait for January, counteract some of the naughtiness with healthiness now! 2. Keep hydrated - every cell in your body needs water, increase your intake slowly and see how

Emma Barker runs spin classes at Lord Williams’s School, Thame your skin glows and energy levels rise. 3. 5 Minute Meditation - find a quiet place, take deep breaths, close your eyes and be still, your body and mind will thank you. Meditation App ‘Headspace’ is worth a try. 4. Become a Conscious eater - be mindful of what you put in your body and make time to eat without distractions such as computers/TV. 5. Daily gratitude - think of 5 things to be grateful for, This is an instant mood lifter and will help at times of stress. For No.1 why not try my new

Half Hour Spin Classes. These take place every Monday and Wednesday morning from 7-7:30am (term time only) at Lord Williams’s Lower School in Thame. Spin or Indoor Cycling is seriously good for your health, improving fitness levels, muscle tone, burning fat and releasing endorphins, it’s one experience you’ve got to try. It’s a great nonimpact cardio activity, suitable for all fitness levels and ages. We might have someone new to fitness, cycling next to someone competing for a triathlon, however individuals are encouraged to work at their own level so everyone gets a great workout! If you feel self-conscious in classes, our Spin sessions could be ideal, as the lights are low and everyone’s focus is straight ahead on the teacher. You will benefit from the energy a group class brings without feeling judged or compared. After setting up your bike, we have a gentle warm up, then, riding in time to music, we take the pace of the class up and down, simulating hill climbs, sprints and free riding by changing our body positions, pedal speed, and resistance. We

Emma Barker Spinning and wellness finish with a cool down and stretch. Science-based evidence suggests that this kind of interval style training creates an after-burn effect, raising your metabolism and burning calories even after you’ve left the Spin Class! Happy Christmas to all you Vale Life readers! l Emma’s spin classes cost £7.50

per class but mention ‘Vale Life Magazine’ and receive your first class FREE! (must book before 31st Jan, 2017). For more on spin classes or how Emma can help you, please get in touch, via email: or see:

Maria Bray

Changes are afoot!

Nutritional Therapy

The Science of Health and Vitality l

Eat Well l Live Well l Feel Well


New Saturday morning Teen Clinic: £30 for 1 hour session

‘Excellence for all your foot care needs’ Did you know that the average person walks some 75,000 miles in their lifetime! It is not surprising then that many of us experience foot problems at some point. Come to Feet First where our team of highly qualified and experienced Podiatrists utilise a combination of innovative technology, professional expertise and care, to help keep your feet healthy and happy. Feet First, 13a Upper High Street, Thame, Oxfordshire, OX9 3ER Tel: 01844 261023 Email: Web:


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Take charge of your health - I can assist you to achieve your desired health improvements with a mutually agreed and appropriate stepped programme of dietary and lifestyle changes. Diagnostic testing for: l Food intolerances / poor digestion l Vitamin D skin prick - overall health; bones, depression; skin; immunity l Homocysteine testing - heart health; brain health

Call for free half hour consultation

Tel: Maria on 0771 5414719 / 01296 581561

Intelligent Movement Through Yoga improve Strength and Flexibility and reduce Stress Mondays, 8pm, Longwick Village Hall

Mum & Baby YOGA

Rebuild Core Strength & Improve Posture Wednesdays, 1.30pm, Bledlow Village Hall

All abilities and fitness levels welcome Contact Carolyn: 07817 830390 Email:

Health & Fitness

Fancy a Blast!? F

ollowing the success of KaSoTonic Exercise to Music classes, KaSo Studios have added another level to their mix of Dance & Fitness Classes – this time using High Intensity Interval Training methods to create their own fast paced, effective and easy to follow workout - KaSoTonic™ BLAST. KaSoTonic BLAST is going down a storm with clients and for good reason: It’s Efficient - You Burn Fat & Increase Your Metabolism You Help Your Heart - The BLAST class uses the BEST moves from KaSoTonic™ total body workout classes to combine aerobic intervals with super effective muscular strength and endurance exercises. With 3 rounds of 9 minute BLASTS you’ll be shedding fat AND toning too. Your KaSo class instructor is there to motivate you to do the best YOU can, to push yourself to YOUR limit whilst keeping a VERY close eye on your technique and safety, ensuring you get the most out of your workout according to the company’s KaSo Cares ethos. There’s a level for everyone at KaSo: For more information about KaSoTonic™ Blast, KaSoTonic™, KaSoTonic™ Light or KaSoTonic™ Gold - head to www.kasostudios. Passes and PAYG options available.

KaSoDance your way to Health with Ballet and Tap KaSo clients are hugely enjoying the fitness benefits they gain from Tap and Ballet. It’s never too late to start, or get back into dancing! At KaSo it’s NOT about being the best in the room but about having fun, learning something new and staying healthy and happy in the process. Ballet is a great way to get fit as it works every muscle in the body and helps to create long, lean lines rather than bulking the body. It is perfect for helping you lose yourself for an hour or more. You will be so busy thinking about where everything on your body is, you’ll not have a moment to think about the cares of the day!

Tap is a super sociable hobby and a guaranteed way to help you laugh and have fun. It needs balance, is great for those looking to improve their posture and will help look after your back using those deep postural muscles. Tap can also be great for improving aerobic capacity and shedding some calories as the gentle continuous movement picks up that heart rate. KaSo Dance classes are up and running in Thame, Long Crendon and Berryfields. Classes are course based and with many levels to choose from – you are welcome to start at any time. l Kaso Studios Dance & Fitness Classes take

place in Thame, Long Crendon, Oakley, Brill, Longwick, Chinnor, Berryfields, Haydon Hill, Quainton, Stone and Prestwood. See: or email: for details.

Comfort and Quality from People who Care Independent Living Risborough If you are choosing a new sofa, suite, Made in Britain bed or chair, it is important to ensure your purchase is not only stylish but comfortable, provides the right support, is well-designed and constructed and offers value for money. ILC is a local, family-run business with many years experience supplying bespoke and offthe-shelf beds and chairs. Contact one of our Buckinghamshire showrooms for friendly, professional help and advice. ILC, Woodway, Loosley Row, Princes Risborough, Buckinghamshire, HP27 0NN Tel: 01844 273 050 Email: Website:


Five Year Warranties and Finance available Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17



Column: Fitness Focus with Active Bucks

Health & Fitness

Move more, feel great A

ctive Bucks is a weekly programme of fun and inspiring activities taking place across Buckinghamshire; on days, evenings and weekends. It will continue throughout the year and new activities will be added regularly. The Active Bucks project aspires to help all Bucks residents lead happier, healthier lives. Too many of us are not doing enough physical activity to benefit our health. This means we’re missing out on all the other benefits being active can bring, such as reducing our risk of disease and disability, becoming more independent, connecting with other local people and our communities, and improving our mental wellbeing. Committing yourself to a regular class can be expensive, or perhaps the idea of a sports based activity is a complete turn off. So why not take a look at what is on offer with Active Bucks. Bring a family member or a friend along and have a great time! Activities are open to everyone and each session costs just £2 (guided walks, dog walks, running groups and

mystery trails are free). The first session is free, so you can try before you buy! Get your voucher and browse the activities taking place in your area at There are over 2,500 activities listed on our website. The sessions are aimed at a variety of skills levels from beginners to those that are more experienced, so don’t count yourself out if currently you do little or no activity. The activities run during the day, in the evenings and at

Peaceful Yoga Bring peace into your life

Yoga Classes

to your daily activity levels. Being active helps keep us happy and healthy during the course of our lives. Brisk walking remains one of the simplest ways to get more active. Why not walk briskly to the shops, to post that letter or to see family/ friends? In fact, walking with a friend is a great way to stay in touch and become healthier. Remember to: •Build on the activity that you are already doing •Set yourself some realistic goals •Keep a note of how you are doing •Start slowly and work up your activity week by week You might want to check out your local parks and leisure centres or the Bucks Physical Activity search at Being active keeps your heart healthy, reduces your risk of serious illness and strengthens muscles and bones. It can also be a great way of reducing your stress levels and lifting your mood.

weekends to fit around your routine. Activities you could try in the new year include: Walking football, Ballroom dancing, Walk, Jog, Run, GPS Trails and Mystery Trails, Yoga and Pilates, Nordic walking, Bush Craft, Community group walks and Military fitness. But you don’t need to take up a sport or join a gym; any activity which makes you breathe faster and feel warmer, even gardening and housework, make a great contribution



II CAN CAN TREAT TREATCorns, Corns,calluses, calluses,cracked crackedheels, heels, nail problems, thickened nails and can treat nail problems, thickened nails and can treat people who have diabetes. people who have diabetes. II CAN CAN OFFER OFFERVisits Visitsininthe thecomfort comfort of of your your own home, a warm attitude, generalroom, foot care own home or atcaring my Thame treatment including regular nail cutting and filing and a a warm caring attitude, general foot care foot massage at the of your including regular nailend cutting and treatment. filing and a foot massage at the end of your treatment. TO ARRANGE A VISIT OR FOR MORE TO ARRANGE A VISIT OR FOR MORE INFORMATION CONTACT ANTONIA BARNES INFORMATION CONTACT ANTONIA BARNES 01844 261766 or 07795 01844 261766 or 07795 692464 692464

Helping to keep your feet in a healthy condition Based in Thame, I am also a fully qualified massage therapist offering holistic massage and reflexology REGISTERED MEMBER OF THE BRITISH ASSOCIATION OF FOOT HEALTH PRACTITIONERS

Classes in flowing movement, relaxation and meditation Weekly class starting Wednesday 11th January 2017 at The Lodge, The College Farm, Long Crendon HP18 9AP

Complementary Health Therapies from Experienced Practitioners

Classes at 6.30 - 7.45pm and 8.00 - 9.15pm, suitable for beginners £105 per term • £12 drop-in (concessions unwaged)


Sarah Goodwin on 07892 401486 or • Peaceful Yoga January 2017 A5 flier Long Crendon.indd 1

2 20

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Thame Therapy Clinic

24/11/2016 11:51

23 Upper High Street, Thame, OX9 3EX Tel: 01844 215555

Health & Fitness

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Thame’s Massage Matters clinic are not just experts at alleviating muscle pain and dysfunction. The team have taken their art to a new level and offer a positive holistic approach to your ongoing well-being and a healthier lifestyle, based on science. Clinic lead John Holman explains...


assage Matters are specialists in massage therapy and treat the soft tissues of the body muscles, ligaments and tendons - to help relieve aches, pains, posture issues or related symptoms. There is a science to what they do and high levels of skill and expertise in the techniques employed. They are passionate about their work and believe that if massage was a regular part of our lives many of our problems would not occur in the first place. A quick look at their website shows three key areas they can address: Pain and Injury Treatment Sports Injuries; Postural Problems; Recovery from Surgery; Pain related to Poor Flexibility Stress Management - Tension Headaches; Neck and Shoulder Pain; Sleep Problems; High Blood Pressure Speciality Treatments - Massage during pregnancy; the Fantastic Foot Treatment; Massage for those with cancer; and the Hydrotherm 3 dimensional massage. “We all intuitively know that touch is crucial to health,” says Clinic lead John Holman. “In fact we become completely dysfunctional without it. Massage is constructive touch and if done really well can provide a tremendous feeling of well-being… but is there any scientific evidence to back this up? “In 1992 Dr Tiffany Field established the Touch Research Institute (TRI) at the University of Miami - the first centre in the World devoted solely to the study of touch and its application in science and medicine. “Today, Dr Field heads a distinguished team of researchers and has completed more than 100 studies on the positive effects of touch, the most significant indicating that regular massage can reduce the long term damaging effects of elevated levels of the stress hormone, cortisol - considered by many medical professionals as public health enemy number one! Elevated levels of cortisol interfere with memory and learning, lowering immune function, increasing weight gain, blood pressure, cholesterol and the risk of

Ayurvedic Massage reduces stress and lowers harmful cortisol levels heart disease. “With massage it’s a case of ‘the better John Holman the quality, the better the effect’. Any sort of massage is better than nothing at all, but an hour a month, or perhaps two half hours, of really good quality back massage a month, could have a really beneficial effect on your health and well-being. “We are well known for helping our clients with musculo-skeletal problems but our top treatment for reducing stress and according to science, reducing the damaging effects of cortisol is something to consider if you are thinking about your well-being and making positive lifestyle changes in the new year. Ayurvedic massage Ayurveda is the oldest holistic healthcare system in the World. The father of western medicine Hippocrates studied Ayurveda and included a great deal of Ayurvedic beliefs and texts in his teachings. The word Ayurveda originates from the ancient Sanskrit language and is made up of two words Ayus meaning “Life” and “Veda” meaning sacred knowledge or science. “At Massage Matters we have integrated the wisdoms of Ayurveda into the technology of modern massage. The art of cultured, gracious living has always been an integral part of the heritage in India and it is from

here that we draw the inspiration for a truly exquisite massage experience. “The Hydrotherm Ayurvedic massage starts with the atmospheric background music, gently drawing you into the timeless traditions of Ayurveda, while the warmth and support of Hydrotherm, the World’s first 3 dimensional massage system further relaxes until you can feel that your life seems to have a time, place and purpose. “The ingredients that we use in our oils for this treatment are based on just one assumption - everything has to have an essential purity and a reason. It could be to enhance one’s mood, to derive pleasure from an ambience, or to just experience beautiful hand-crafted products that care for your mind, body and spirit. “We believe that this massage treatment experience is unsurpassed in its effectiveness and that there is no better way to introduce the power of constructive touch at its very best into your life.” Why not take a really positive step in looking after your health and well-being in 2017 and try an Ayurvedic massage treatment at Massage Matters. l Massage Matters, North Street, Thame, Oxfordshire, OX9 3TH Tel: 01844 212022 Email: Web: Open Mon - Fri: 8am - 8pm, Sat: 8am - 6pm, Sun: 10am - 4pm Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Health & Beauty

Charlotte Mobile Hairdresser Professional Hairdressing for

Everyone All in the comfort of your own home

Over 12 years of salon experience

If you are feeling sad, confused, worried, depressed, anxious, lonely, or just overwhelmed, I can help. Whatever issue is troubling you why not get in touch and we can find a solution together. I am a qualified Psychotherapist offering a flexible therapeutic service tailored to your needs and requirements

Jaqui Supple Counselling

Tel: 07479 939461 • modern cutting techniques • colours (all types) • • colour correction • blow dry • curls & waves • • perms • sets • hair extensions • special occasions •

Web: Email: Tel: 07977904067

Thai Orchid Massage and Spa

Traditional Thai Massage, Swedish Massage, Aromatherapy Body Massage, foot massage, herbal hot compress, back, head & neck massage 1 hour Aromatherapy Massage £40 1 hour Swedish Full Body Massage £40 1 hour Traditional Thai Massage £45

Reflexions Health & Leisure Centre

Fantastic Elemis product and facial offer during January and February See website or facebook for more details*

07771 330366

Buckingham Road, Watermead, Aylesbury, HP19 0FY

Tel: 01296 330311 Mobile: 07587 172659

Unit 5, Layby Farm, Stoke Mandeville, Bucks. HP22 5XJ *T & Cs apply, see website for more details

Experts in Mobility and Healthcare Supplies Come and visit our new showroom at Watermead, Aylesbury or, if you can’t get to us - give us a call and we’ll visit you! Specialists in ‘tilt in space’ riser recline chairs Lightweight wheelchairs Wide range of mobility scooters Extensive range of three/four wheeled walkers Bath and shower solutions Aids for daily living Profiling beds and stairlifts Discreet professional advice on continence management Advice and guidance on all aspects of mobility and personal care Equipment Hire Excellent after sales service and customer care 35 Lakeside, Watermead, Aylesbury, HP19 OFX | Tel: 01296 435607 | Web: 22

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Health & Beauty l

Column: ‘Kiss & tell’ with Tracy Kiss

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

New year, new challenge


Tracy, pictured in her ‘stage bikini’ aims to put on some muscle in 2017

he first marks on any blank slate should be for goal setting and promising to be a fitter, happier and healthier version of yourself than in previous years, may be a little clichéd but well worthwhile achieving. The New Year is a chance to start over, discover your true self once more and take inspiration from your idols and dreams. With 2017 being my 30th year on this beautiful earth I plan to take my fitness goals to the extreme and do something I’d never dreamed possible before – compete in the fastest growing bikini and bodybuilding contest in Europe at Pure Elite. Amateur and professional athletes and models from across the world train their bodies to the limits in order to compete on stage for prizes and the coveted title and trophy of their chosen category ranging from ‘fitness models’, to ‘swimwear’, ‘beach body’, ‘mums who lift’ and all out ‘bodybuilding for men’. Tall or short, old or young, everybody is welcome as a part of a healthy, positive

fitness event that truly changes lives. As I sat in the audience at the O2 Arena earlier this year watching the world finals I had a tear in my eye at the pride I felt for the bronzed and buff strangers on stage. Each person had a story, a reason and dream behind becoming the best version of themselves, from five-stone weightlosses, to raising four children singlehandedly and surviving illness; awe-inspiring doesn’t even come close! Naturally being a fitness blogger I’m looking forward to capturing my entire journey warts and all and sharing my results with the world in the hope of motivating and inspiring others to achieve their own life goals. I’m a total cardio bunny and ran a half marathon just last week as my cardio warm-up before a workout, but bodybuilding is the polar opposite end of the scale and is unlike anything I’ve ever done before. I have just twelve weeks (post-Christmas pud belly) to get into the best shape of my life and build muscle, which involves weight training

Spirit Health Club Aylesbury is the right place to be if you

are looking for a Health Club with a personal touch. Our Lifestyle Consultants are able to provide one to one guidance that has already helped numerous members achieve their goals. Why not let them help you reach yours through the use of the club’s facilities including fitness suite, swimming pool and studio classes. In a friendly and relaxed environment come and unwind and take advantage of our sauna, steam room, and spa pool. Numerous benefits to members include complimentary towels, discount on Holiday Inn stays and beauty treatments as well as use of all other Spirit Clubs across the UK. Additional services also include Personal Training, Physiotherapy, Beauty Therapy and Swimming Lessons.

Tracy Kiss

Kiss & tell

six days per week, eating an incredibly strict and clean vegan diet, learning to pose for stage routines, sourcing a bikini and finding the perfect fake tan that won’t leave me looking like David Dickinson in heels. Oh, and I’m also filming four TV shows, modeling, writing, running after my two children and recovering from two surgeries! But remember, even a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Happy New Year Vale Life readers, to you and your loved ones, let’s make 2017 a year to remember! l Read Tracy’s blog at: or follow her on: Twitter: @misstracykiss or Facebook: /TheTracyKiss


Come along for FREE on The Weekend of 7th and 8th January Try our gym, classes, pool & spa facilities! Or call us to book your FREE trial for any day of the week!

Spirit Health Club Aylesbury Holiday Inn Aylesbury, New Road Aylesbury, HP22 5QT Tel: 01296 734049 Email: sbury Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Health & Fitness

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Professional hearing experts Aston Hearing are now in their 27th year. The family firm grew slowly at first but the pace has been building and in the last few months they have opened a new branch in Thame, invested in a mobile audio clinic, refurbished their base at Amersham and seen Managing Director & Senior Audiologist Duncan Collet-Fenson BSc MSHAA crowned UK and then European Audiologist of the Year...


uncan joined Aston Hearing in 1998, he became a Director of the business when the company incorporated in 2000 and Managing Director when his mother-in-law Susan Webster, the founder of Aston Hearing Services, retired in September 2008. He is married to Susan’s daughter Kate (Director of the company and a qualified Hearing Aid Audiologist) and they have two children, Lucia and Charlie. Duncan has an intuitive, empathetic audiological style and understands how to achieve best results from the technology available, while through his position of Chairman of The Association of Independent Hearing Healthcare Professionals, he strives to promote the highest standards of audiological care and service in the independent sector. He was nominated for the awards for his work with Nikki Magrath in helping her to fully recover from her second experience of Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss. Nikki’s story is important as her experience could help others who find themselves in the same situation. She lost hearing in one ear as a child after a tonsillectomy and coped very well for many years with normal hearing in her other ear. In her late 30s Nikki experienced a Sudden Hearing Loss, which reduced her remaining hearing, in her good ear, to about 20%. She was able to manage well by wearing a single hearing aid, until again experiencing a drop in hearing in May this year, to almost nothing coupled with distressing tinnitus. Luckily, Nikki rushed to Aston Hearing,

2 24

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Duncan Collet-Fenson

where Duncan, who was working on a Saturday, did an audiogram which revealed her sudden hearing loss. She then went to hospital where she was given steroids, around 7 hours after first discovering her hearing loss. After two and a half weeks, Nikki’s partial hearing came back in one ear. Sudden Hearing Loss is a medical emergency and although steroid treatment is usually successful, acting quickly as in Nikki’s case is crucial. It is estimated that around 1 in 5000 people lose their hearing suddenly each year, but we believe that many cases of Sudden Hearing Loss are undiagnosed and untreated, as many people think that their drop in hearing is due to a common cold. Sudden Hearing Loss has various causes, such as a virus, infection or blood circulation problems, and the majority of people don’t know why their hearing levels dropped. It can be professionally diagnosed with a pure tone audiometry hearing test - a hearing drop of 30 decibels or more in three frequencies is considered to be a sign of Sudden Hearing Loss. Everyone experiences Sudden Hearing Loss in different ways. Some people notice a ‘pop’ before their hearing disappears, whereas for others it seems to almost fade out. Some will notice their hearing loss straight away,

or sometimes it is only apparent when they are using the telephone. In nine out of ten cases the hearing loss is only present in one ear. It may also be accompanied by vertigo (dizziness) or tinnitus (ringing in the ears). If you notice one of more of these signs, you must go to A&E and ask to see an Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) specialist - but it maybe a good idea to call Aston Hearing for advice and an emergency hearing assessment to check the problem is in the inner ear and not due to a conductive issue. Aston Hearing offers an emergency service - call: 07970 547999 or 07977 522150 (24 hours) and they will be happy to help. Increasing awareness of Sudden Hearing Loss is one of Aston Hearing’s goals for the next year and they will be giving talks in the local area on the topic, as well as distributing information to clients and the wider community. For more information, please email: l Aston Hearing (Thame), Cobbles Yard 112 High Street, Thame, Oxfordshire, OX9 3DZ Tel: 01844 396057 l Aston Hearing (Amersham), Flint Barn Court, Church Street, Old Amersham, Bucks, HP7 0DB Tel: 01494 733840 Email: Web:


Health & Fitness

Column: Fitness Focus with Ramblers UK

Walking yourself well


eople throughout Great Britain are being invited to step out with the Ramblers during its free, annual Festival of Winter Walks (17 December 2016 - 8 January 2017), when walkers across the country will leave footprints in the snow as they explore Britain at its wintry best. Starting in the build up to Christmas, the Festival of Winter Walks marches right into the New Year, with the following range of free activities on offer: Ramblers groups will be leading hundreds of free walks all over Britain. These range from short festive strolls to blow away the cobwebs, right up to whole day hikes to kick-start New Year’s resolutions, and everything in between including: Short health walks - perfect for anyone taking their first steps into walking - join Walking for Health, England’s largest network of health walk schemes, delivered in partnership by the Ramblers and

Be the first to leave tracks in the snow!

Macmillan Cancer Support. For those who prefer to walk alone, or lead their own walks, festival routes are available from Ramblers Routes, an online library of more than 2,500 of Britain’s best walks. The Ramblers’ director of walking development, Simon Barnett, says: “Winter is one of the best times to go out for a walk. There’s something truly magical about putting on your hat and gloves, heading out with your loved ones and perhaps even being the

first person to leave footprints in the snow. “Our popular Festival of Winter Walks is our Christmas gift to the nation, so that everyone can enjoy the wonders of a winter walk. Our walks during the festival are free, fun, friendly and open to everyone, so wrap up warm and join us as we enjoy the season the way we know best, on our feet.” The Ramblers have also launched a free online tracker that allows people to log their walking activity, helping people to get active and stay on track with New Year’s resolutions. Designed to suit both the seasoned walker and someone taking their first steps, there are lots of badges and rewards for walking regularly, completing long distances and reaching particular milestones. It could be walking every day in a month, completing the equivalent of the length of the Wales Coast Path or even earning a Santa badge for walking on Christmas Eve, Christmas Day or

Boxing Day. Simon added: “The Festival of Winter Walks is free and open to everyone, but anyone who gets the walking bug can visit: www. to find out more about becoming a Ramblers member. “Our members enjoy access to over 45,000 group walks led by our volunteers each year, as well as exclusive walking routes that can be downloaded and quarterly editions of Walk magazine. Your membership will also be helping to protect the nation’s footpaths for generations to come.” For further information about the Festival of Winter Walks and to browse the festive walks or routes on offer visit: uk/winterwalks.

Kate Walker

Mobile Chiropodist

Stella Huxley

BSc (Hons) Hcpc Registered

Massage Therapist

General Foot Care l Verruca Treatment l Ingrowing Nails l Biomechanics l

Tel: 078875 51591

Swedish Body Massage Aromatherapy Body Massage Deep Tissue Massage Indian Head Massage

Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire

EAR WAX REMOVAL If you are troubled by excessive ear wax causing discomfort or loss of hearing, CV Health Aural Care Service can offer you a very effective treatment at its Haddenham Medical Centre. Micro-suction is the most up-to-date procedure for removing obstructions in the ear and compared to syringing, it is safer, quicker, better tolerated and more effective. What does it cost? CV Health offers a competitively priced service at £80.

Call now 01494 412525 Monday to Friday (9 am to 5 pm) or email for an appointment:

Suffering with Anxiety, Feeling Sad & Unhappy, Relationship problems Caring, empathetic & confidential ? help is available.

049 Bliss Vale Life Ad 60x90mm.indd 1

10/04/2015 12:52

Hypnotherapy can & has helped many many people with these types of issues. FREE initial consultation

Angie Elbourn Reg Hyp. MNRAH. CNHC (CNHC are the only registering body for Hypnotherapy that is recognised by the Dept of Health) (just co no uk) 077756 77796

@angieelbourn Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Health & Beauty

Amanda Trott

l Column

Wow, doesn’t time fly! Another year has passed and what an enjoyable and interesting one it’s been too, as far as the Beauty Spot is concerned. I’ve experienced some truly wonderful treatments and met some amazing beauty professionals along the way...


ne of the perks of my job, is meeting all the wonderfully skilled and talented therapists out there, whose passion is to make us look and feel better about ourselves and boost our confidence to go out there and face the world. This year I’ve met beauty therapists, skin specialists, massage therapists and aesthetic practitioners to name but a few and below is a round up of some of the treatments I have received plus your chance to win a Spa Day at Whittlebury Hall! In our March/April edition I met April Russell, owner of Skin Society. April wanted to tell me all about Hydra Facial, a facial favoured by red carpet regulars such as Eva Mendes and Kate Winslett. Hydra Facial is a new concept in facials and is performed using a vacuum tip, loaded with various serums, all formulated to target and combat different skin issues; anti-ageing, acne-prone and congested, hyper pigmentation and problem skin. The probe removes dead skin cells whilst deep cleansing and exfoliating, skin specific serums are then worked deep into the skin. I left April’s salon feeling as though I could happily have gone out without make up, as my skin looked flawless and radiant. Since my last visit, April has moved to bigger premises in the centre of Thame. You can now find Skin Society in Thame’s Upper High Street above Greens Furnishings. In May I visited Holly at Thame’s Monera, where I received a beautiful set of LVL lashes. LVL

LVL lashes at Monera 2 26

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Amanda Trott

Beauty Spot

WIN an Escape and Spa Stay Plus for two at Whittlebury Hall

Hydra Facial at Skin Society

(Lift, Volumise, Lengthen) actually straightens the eye lashes and opens up the eyes to the extent that I had people asking me if I’d had false lashes applied! I was so impressed with this treatment that I have continued to have it done every six to eight weeks. Co owners Mark Webster and John Holman invited me to Massage Matters in June to show me their unique and groundbreaking form of diagnostic massage. I was suffering from what had been diagnosed as Plantar Fasciitis but Mark and John thought differently and with regular massage from them and some foot exercises, I was soon pain free. In November I was back at Whitethorn Fields Medi Clinic receiving treatment for an unsightly blemish on my leg. Whitethorn are always at the fore when it comes to new treatments, and co-owner Caron Vetter, makes sure her staff are trained to the highest standard. If you are interested in finding out about cosmetic tattooing, skin peels, botox and many other cosmetic treatments, then Whitethorn Fields Medi Clinic is the place to go for up to the minute advice and the latest treatments. l To contact Amanda with regard to Beauty Spot features please email:

Relaxing by the whirlpool spa


he award-winning Whittlebury Hall Hotel and Spa, is offering Vale Life readers the chance to win an overnight stay for two worth more than £250. The Escape and Spa Stay Plus is an overnight escape with The Day Spa Heat and Ice Experiences plus your choice of 50 minute treatment, from either: • The Day Spa Facial, OR • The Day Spa Facial for Men, OR • The Day Spa Signature Massage, OR • Elemis Peaceful Pregnancy Massage Plus a two course buffet lunch

Whittlebury Hall

and three course dinner in Aston’s Restaurant, Plus a Full English Breakfast and Full use of The Leisure Club from day of arrival to 11am on day of departure. If you’d like to be in with a chance of winning an Escape and Spa Day Plus at Whittlebury Hall, email your name, address and telephone number along with the answer to the following question, to: How long is the main swimming pool at Whittlebury? Winner to be drawn at random from correct entries and notified by email by Jan 20th, 2017. l

Health & Beauty Alex, Kelly and team would like to wish all our clients a very Merry Christmas and a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.

A little hairdressing gem

Unwind, be pampered and experience top quality hair design in our welcoming, comfortable, child-friendly salon. Open Mon: 07.30 - 18.00, Tue: Closed, Wed: 09.00 - 20.00, Thur: 11.00 - 20.00, Fri: 09.00 - 18.00, Sat: 08.00 - 15.30 NB this Christmas we will close at 4pm on Wed 21st Dec and reopen at 8am New Year’s Eve. Wanted - enthusiastic, apprentice to train inhouse with the Salon Fourteen team! Contact Alex or Kelly for details.

14 Edison Road, Aylesbury, HP19 8TE Tel: 01296 392880 E: W:

A hairdressing and beauty salon with over 10 years experience, specialising in re-styles, colour work, hair and makeup for weddings, proms and parties.

10% OFF ALL SERVICES when you mention vale life mag

This year...


very January everybody tries to refocus on their health & fitness. Weight loss goals, marathon aspirations, or that ‘this will be the year’ for getting balance back to life… I’ve noticed that for things to really change, three things are necessary. There’s the goal itself, which most of us are familiar with. But really this is just the outcome. One of the other key components of a successful health & fitness program is to know why you want to do it. And because you ‘think you should’ isn’t usually enough of a driver to make it stick. I encourage my tribe to think about why they want to change. What benefits will they enjoy not just when they reach their goal, but along the way. Once you’re doing something that has an intrinsic benefit you’re far more likely to stick to it. You may want to lose weight for example, but what sits behind this goal? Is it an increase in energy you’re after? Greater confidence? Happiness? You may decide that eating healthier foods is a good place to start on your quest to lose weight, and in doing so your energy levels begin to rise. Your mood shifts and you learn about new cooking techniques & ingredients. You become more confident in the kitchen, efficient

with your planning & preparation, and start to enjoy eating good food. The third thing that’s often missing when we set out to become healthier is the process. I don’t believe that you have to know how to take every step of your journey, but if you don’t have a clear plan of how to take the next one you’re prevented from taking action. You can’t get up in the morning and ‘lose weight’ or ‘get fitter’. But you can have a healthy breakfast or go for a run. Having a number of specific actions you can take and measure yourself against means you can begin to make progress. Build the habits, enjoy the journey, and become the person you want to be. l George Anderson is a wellbeing coach, author & presenter. He works with companies to help inspire their employees to take action so that they can thrive. His online programs and communities have been motivating, supporting & guiding people around the world for over a decade.

We are a Beauty Salon on Bedgrove with free, easy parking directly outside. We can cater for all your beauty needs under one roof with our wide range of treatments which includes: massage, manicures, pedicures, waxing, threading, tinting, microdermabrasion, lashes, spray tans, vertical UV tanning booths and exclusive to us Bamboo massage.

Offer ends Jan 31st 2017

To book an appointment call or pop in

01296 338 344 Duck Farm Court, Station Way, Aylesbury, HP20 2SQ

We offer NHS employees a special discount of *20% off treatments. Friday is Over 65’s Day with 20% off for those aged 65 and above. *NHS discount cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer and excludes sun beds

59 Westmorland Avenue, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP21 7HS Tel: 01296 434216 Web: Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Health & Beauty

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

You can hear the roar of the Grand Prix track at Silverstone from the car park at Whittlebury Hall, happily once inside there is a calmer atmosphere altogether and a world of pampering awaits, says the Editor...


very once in a while, it’s good to get away and just, relax... Taking a day off work or sending the kids to Granny’s whilst grabbing some well earned ‘me’ time, usually results in DIY disasters or endless phone calls from PPI companies not very relaxing at all! Whittlebury Hall Hotel and Spa offers a more reliable option. Located in the Northamptonshire village of Whittlebury near Silverstone, in the midst of a golf course, this award-winning spa offers amazing value Day Spa Relaxation Days and Overnight Stays - just what the doctor ordered. Once there you can enjoy the Leisure Club facilities: a 19-metre pool, whirlpool spa, bubble jet, steam room, sauna, aerobic studio and gym with the latest state-of-theart facilities... or, if feeling a little more adventurous, brave the ‘Heat and Ice Experience’ - a series of treatments designed to increase your body’s temperature before you step into the Ice Cave to stimulate your circulation and senses, a process which aids the elimination of toxins and exfoliates the skin - I’m not so sure about the ice bucket experience myself but no pain, no gain I guess! Facilities include a Sanarium® incorporating a sauna, soft steam bath and herbal bath; a Caldarium hot room and a Soap Massage Room, an Aromatherapy Crystal Steam Room, an Ice Cave, Roman Salt Steam, Experience Showers, Foot Spas and a Hydrotherapy Pool and with a choice of over 60 treatments to add to your package, delivered by a team of highly skilled therapists, you may not be in a rush to get back home! Anyway, Granny loves having the kids, doesn’t she?! Whittlebury Hall boasts a pleasant sports bar, a café and two restaurants: Astons which mixes classic and contemporary cuisine with a dash of continental inspiration and caters for lunch in a buffet style, and Murrays, an award-


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

The hydrotherapy pool

Whittlebury Hall

Relaxing by the main pool

winning. fine-dining restaurant, a glass of wine (and a snooze on serving excellent food and great a water bed in the relaxation area) wines delivered by the most attentive we made our way back to the Spa, service. where we were whisked away for On arrival we were our first treatment, a Day greeted by a team of Spa Signature Massage. friendly and efficient WIN an Escape and This is a 50 minute Spa Stay Plus for two full body massage staff who offered to take our luggage designed to deliver at Whittlebury Hall to our room and relaxation and The award-winning Whittlebury gave us a tour of enhance wellHall Hotel and Spa, is offering the facilities. We being, which it Vale Life readers the chance to decided to change certainly does! The win an overnight stay for two. into our robes and fabulously soothing For details of our competition slippers, familiarise see Amanda’s Beauty Column treatment, soon had on page 26. ourselves with the Spa me drifting into a state and see what availability of complete relaxation. I there was for any further treatments hope I didn’t snore! during our stay. I’d often wondered whether Treatments can be booked via the Hopi Ear Candle Therapy would be website prior to your visit or you can effective for waxy ears, so seeing it take your chance on the day, but the on the treatment menu, I thought Spa does get busy so it’s advisable to I’d give it a try. The candles are book ahead if possible. made of bamboo and beeswax and We opted to make the most of cause a vacuum in the ear as they the pool, bubble jet and sauna and burn, so drawing wax and anything before we knew it, lunch was calling. else from the ear. With your head After a delicious buffet meal with on one side a candle is placed gently

into the auditory canal and lit! It’s a painless treatment, just warmth and some audible crackling, like distant fireworks. I was amazed by the detritus that came out with the candle afterwards and my ears felt much clearer. They are also said to benefit those suffering from stress, hay fever and other forms of rhinitis, excessive ear wax or a sensation of blocked ears, tinnitus, ear or sinus irritation, headaches, migraine and sinusitis. The rest of our day gently ebbed away and soon we were back in our room changing for a delicious dinner once again in Astons. The rooms are stylish, spacious, modern and comfortable and the following morning, after a particularly good night’s sleep, we enjoyed an excellent breakfast and my wife disappeared for a Gel Pedicure whilst I took a stroll and relaxed with a coffee in the bar. On a previous visit we discovered the Rasul treatment, a traditional Arabian cleansing ritual which is a lot of fun - you help each other exfoliate with a salt scrub and then apply different grades of detoxifying thermal mud to specific areas of your bodies. You then enter the steam room and after the heat has built up showers burst from the ceiling, washing the mud away and leaving your skin feeling wonderful! We were again impressed by the efficiency and friendliness of the staff at Whittlebury Hall - each and every one goes out of their way to accommodate the guests and the therapists are well trained and very proficient. Reluctantly, but feeling rested and revived, we checked out of our haven of tranquillity and headed homewards, already discussing a possible return visit! l Whittlebury Hall, Whittlebury, Nr Towcester, Northamptonshire, NN12 8QH Spa reservations: 0845 400 0002 Hotel and Dining reservations: 0845 400 0001 Web:

Health & Beauty

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

If you would like to be silky smooth and hairless in all those important places and not have to wax, shave or cream ever again, now is the time to start says Laser Hair Removal expert Yvonne Bone, who offers fast, effective treatments at her salon in Wendover. Begin now and you’ll soon be ready for Summer...


n 30 years Yvonne Bone, owner of Scruples in Wendover, has grown her single room, one woman, beauty business into Scruples Hair, Body Beauty, a thriving High Street salon offering up to the minute hair and beauty treatments and employing a team of 21 staff. Yvonne herself is still very involved on the beauty side. She has a particular interest in skincare and is something of an expert in laser hair removal. She was trained by a consultant dermatologist at Amersham Hospital in the use of lasers for skin treatments and hair removal and worked for 15 years in his private practice. In 2013 Scruples became the first non-clinical establishment in the area to register for the use of laser.



Yvonne demonstrates the Gentle Laser hair removal therapy The Gentle Laser system used at Scruples is different to the Intense Pulsed Light treatment (IPL) you find in many beauty salons and for most people only takes around six treatments to dramatically reduce hair growth. Multiple treatments are required to achieve the desired results because hair grows in three stages: Anagen, the growth stage - laser treatments are most effective; Catagen, the transitional stage, when the hair begins to loosen from its follicle; and Telogen, the shedding stage, the hair falls out to make room for new growth. Yvonne explained that the hairs on your body are not always at the same stage, so you’ll need to undergo a course of treatments an average of four to six weeks apart, to catch them all in the growth stage. She recommends a course of six treatments and if you buy five you get the sixth free. For a small area, such as a mono brow, prices start at £50 per session. The primary principle behind laser hair removal is selective photothermolysis (SPTL). A specific wavelength of light and pulse duration is used to target the hair

follicle with minimal effect on the surrounding tissue. The Gentle Laser delivers an intense beam of light into the hair follicle which converts to heat and degrades the root while the surrounding tissue remains unaffected. It works best on paler skin with darker hair as the light is absorbed by the darker object but is ineffective on white or blonde hairs. One of Scruples Laser team can quickly assess if your colouring is suitable for treatment. Laser hair removal, to most people, feels like a rubberband snap against the skin. Particular areas of the body can be more sensitive, such as the underarms, bikini, and upper lip and your skin may be red immediately following the procedure and feel as though you have mild sunburn. This typically lasts from a few minutes to several hours after treatment. Before you start your treatment your laser therapist will conduct a patch test and consultation to check your medical history and ask when you last went in the sun or used a sunbed, as lasering cannot be carried out if the patient has been in the sun or used a sunbed for up to six weeks before a procedure. The good news is that she will usually suggest you shave the area 24 hours before treatment, so although it may be Winter, there is no excuse for walking around like a woolly mammoth! If like many you are fed up with ingrowing hairs, or constantly shaving, waxing or using smelly depilatory creams, then lasering could be for you. The initial outlay may be more costly than a wax but you could find that after only a handful of trips to the salon unwanted hair is no longer a problem! Goodbye wax pot, hello smooth silky legs... l Scruples Hair Body Beauty, 16 High Street, Wendover, Bucks, HP22 6EA Tel: 01296 622043 Web: Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Health & Beauty Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Caron Vetter is something of a local legend in the world of beauty. Over the last 38 years she has established a popular centre for beauty and wellbeing and a hi-tech beauty clinic offering a unique range of cosmetic techniques, treatments and procedures from skin care to cosmetic surgery...


hitethorn Fields Mediclinic and sister facility The Belmore Centre are testaments to beauty expert Caron Vetter’s insatiable desire for seeking out the best and the latest from the beauty industry and then making it available in Stoke Mandeville. She is always open to new ideas and often pioneers new treatments and technology from around the world, well before other UK salons. Caron, who won Buckinghamshire’s Business Leader Award in 2014, grew up in Wendover and attended John Colet School. Since the age of 12 she’d wanted to be a make-up artist and after completing a beauty course at Aylesbury College, some thirty five years ago, she started in the beauty business. She taught beauty therapy, stage make up and special effects there, from 1984-1991, but also worked from home as a beautician and make-up artist, before setting up a beauty salon in 1988, at Caron the now closed Belmore Hotel, on the Old Risborough Road, where she introduced complementary therapies and set up a flotation tank. Her business continued to grow and in 1999, upgraded to more spacious and versatile premises on Lower Road.


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Left and above Caron Vetter tattoos thinning in a client’s eyebrow with hair strokes of pigment for a realistic effect Here, despite a devastating fire in 2005, the Belmore Centre continued to develop while Caron stretched herself, learning new skills and researching innovative treatments and products and holistic and complementary therapies for the centre. The Belmore Centre opens seven days a week and has five beauty therapy rooms, three rooms used by visiting practitioners, a large waiting area, a hair salon, a sunbed room and a Fitness Studio offering activities and classes such as Pilates and Yoga. With help from her stepson James, who joined her at Belmore in 2009 and is now director of the centre, Caron has built a dedicated, friendly and helpful team of fully trained and insured beauty and complementary therapists. “We aim to cater for all aspects of health and beauty and a wide range of complementary therapies,” says James. “We keep an open mind with regard to new treatments, so we are often one of the

Hot Stone Massage

first to introduce new healing or relaxation techniques.” “We try to offer a complete range of services,” says Caron, “from fitness activities to hairdressing; beauty treatments such as: waxing, manicures, cosmetic tattooing, CACI facials, electrolysis, spray tanning, eyebrows and lashes; and luxurious relaxation and indulgence therapies such as: aromatherapy massage, facials, manicures and pedicures. We also offer a wide range of complementary health therapies from Acupuncture and Aromatherapy to Reiki and Reflexology and a variety of anti-ageing treatments.” The centre’s website has a comprehensive list of what is on offer and what each entails ( “It’s good having so many different therapies available under one roof,” says James, “as it introduces new options to our clients which they often recommend to friends or family to try for different problems. We have a free consultation service for prospective clients who have James issues they’d like help with but

Health & Beauty Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

aren’t sure which treatments might be of benefit. Our therapists will cross refer if they think an alternative treatment would be of help and we have the option of additional procedures available at our sister facility, Whitethorn Fields MediClinic which offers a whole range of cosmetic and anti-aging treatments.” “The two centres complement each other well,” says Caron. “We have beauty therapy and complementary therapies at the Belmore Centre and cosmetic and aesthetic medicine at Whitethorn Fields MediClinic. “We want people to look better and feel better. It’s not just about the next exciting development though, we are ready to adapt to our clients’ needs. There’s a real demand for tanning, lashes and nail treatments at the moment, especially before a party, big event or night out. Our beauty treatments now include waxing, facials, St Tropez spray tans, Shellac and Bio Sculpture nails, LVL Lashes and HD Brows and we have a retail section stocking false eyelashes and accessories. “From February we will also be offering Laser hair removal Microblading with our Salon Manager Claire - it’s a form of SemiPermanent Eyebrow filling that expertly reconstructs, covers, or fills over-plucked brows or those lacking in shape, colour, and definition.”

Caron trained in cosmetic tattooing eyebrows, eyeliner and lip-liner, over 25 years ago and realised what a difference it could make to her clients’ lives and confidence. She then went to America and did a course in medical tattooing for cleft lips, scars and burns and breast reconstruction, which wasn’t available in this country at the time. CACI Facial “I do cosmetic and medical tattooing or micropigmentation,” she says. “It is actually different to normal tattooing as pigments, not ink, are used. I use a digital machine and the pigments are not impregnated as deeply as normal, so they are only semi-permanent and will fade over time.” With her experience in complementary therapies helping her to deal sensitively with people who had been on a difficult journey, and her eye for colour matching and aesthetics from her make-up experience, Caron quickly became an accomplished and talented medical tattooist and since 2000 has also been teaching the art of Areola Restoration after breast reconstruction, to nurses and doctors. She is now a respected In 2008 Caron launched her second centre, International lecturer in Medical tattooing Whitethorn Fields MediClinic, a stylish modern and runs training courses around the world, facility, in a secluded, semi-rural location, while still offering the service to clients at which specialises in aesthetic and anti-ageing Whitethorn Fields. treatments, skincare, cosmetic surgery and “The MediClinic has opened up several new high-tech non-surgical procedures. areas,” says Caron, “We have been registered by Sudip Ghosh, MBBS, MS, FRCS (Plast) Eng. the Care Quality Commission and can and Caron are co-directors and have combined undertake surgical procedures here, under their skills and expertise in plastic surgery and their stringent regulations. We do facial peels medical micropigmentation to create a state-of- including Glycolic Peels, which are good the-art facility using the very latest technology. for ageing skin, acne, enlarged pores and

hyperpigmentation and the latest advances in anti-ageing skincare. We also do CACI facelifts (Computer Aided Cosmetology Instrument), where tiny electrical impulses and signals stimulate muscle tone and enhance skin tissue, muscle relaxing injections, fillers, teeth whitening and laser hair removal are also all available here. “You can even have surgery under local anaesthetic in our operating theatre, for procedures such as: wart removal, upper eye bags, and moles - we get quite a few GP referrals. External plastic surgeons are welcome to hire the facilities and our nurse, to carry out procedures here too. “We’ve got a great team at Whitethorn,” says Caron, “several of whom have worked together for many years, which shows in the happy friendly atmosphere. The head laseographer is Ruth Wright, who was my teacher at Aylesbury College back in 1978!” At Whitethorn there are four main areas: Cosmetic surgery, offered by Sudip Ghosh: liposuction, facelifts, breast surgery, thread lifts and so on which are actually carried out at a local BMI hospital such as the Shelbourne in High Wycombe, after consultations at Whitethorn. Anti-ageing treatments such as dermal fillers, dermaroller, vein therapy, laser skin rejuvenation and hair removal, microdermabrasion, muscle relaxing injections etc. Medical and cosmetic tattooing. Minor surgery - mostly GP referred - such as mole removal. In 2017 Caron and team will be celebrating the Belmore Centre’s 25th birthday! Her enthusiasm and dynamism are as strong as ever and her twin centres continue to lead the way, not only in the range of treatments on offer, but in the friendly, professional service supplied. “It’s very satisfying to be able to give people back their confidence and improve their self esteem,” says Caron. “I feel we are changing lives, helping people physically and psychologically and it is really inspiring. I would like to thank all my staff, friends and clients for supporting me on my journey.” l The Belmore Centre, Lower Road, Stoke Mandeville, Aylesbury, Bucks, HP21 9DR. Telephone: 01296 612361 Email: Website : Facebook: Twitter: @BelmoreCentre l Whitethorn Fields MediClinic, Old Risborough Road, Stoke Mandeville, Aylesbury, Bucks. HP22 5XJ. Telephone: 01296 614441 Email: Website: Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


An intensive treatment for ageing skin, including a unique dual layering of intensive masks, with specific lifting, plumping and firming massage. Delivers instantly visible results.

Health & Beauty

ESSENTIAL ROSE FACIALAA 55 MINS ~ £66.50 WITH BACK MASSAGE 85 MIN ~ £85 Luxurious rose oils help condition the skin and deeply nourish. The result is a smooth, radiant complexion and a relaxed state of mind.

SKIN SOLUTIONS FACIALAA 55 MINS ~ £66.50 WITH BACK MASSAGE 85 MIN ~ £85 This treatment regulates problem skin, leaving the complexion instantly bright and radiant.

CLEANSE AtDEEP Hartwell Spa youFACIAL can enjoy the finest fitness, health, beauty 55 MINS ~ £66.50 WITH BACK MASSAGE 85that MINis~always £85 and relaxation facilities, in an atmosphere calm, An intensive that incorporates extraction and hot towel relaxed andtreatment uncrowded. Spa membership offers fullcompresses, use of the alongside facial massage and a freshwater mud mask, leaving a super clean facilities plus additional benefits and social events associated and fresh skin. with the historic house and its restaurant... AA

Trina and Shamus


artwell House is only a mile or so from Aylesbury, but a visit there transports you to another time and place altogether. This haven of peace, elegance and tranquillity may be an historic stately home with Jacobean and Georgian features, outstanding decorative ceilings, huge fire places and some 90 acres of picturesque parkland and gardens, but it’s also an impressive four star, Grade I listed hotel, combining stunning rooms, antique furniture and gorgeous paintings, with the kind of creature comforts and contemporary luxury that modern guests dream of. In the main house there’s fine dining and exemplary service, wonderful afternoon teas and great value set price lunches, while a few yards away you can dip a toe into the Hartwell experience by way of the spa. Located in the stylishly converted dairy, with parts that resemble an orangery, Hartwell Spa features an attractive romanesque swimming pool with spa bath, a steam room, saunas, four treatment rooms and a gym and it is open to non-residents. There are also two all-weather tennis courts in the grounds and plenty of secure free parking. The spa is staffed by friendly, experienced therapists who offer a wide range of relaxing, restorative, rejuvenating, beautifying, and downright pleasurable treatments that can do just about everything from tidying your cuticles to revitalising your sense of humour. They use a range of Aromatherapy Associates and Jessica products and there’s the option of Spa Day and Half Day packages or individual treatments, which are all available to guests

staying in the hotel and to non-residents. Between treatments you can relax by the pool, in the steam room, sauna and bubbling waters of the whirlpool bath, or retire to the Spa Café and Bar - an informal restaurant serving drinks and light meals. “It’s a fabulous setting,” says Spa Manager Rebecca Cade.“We aim to create a unique and exclusive experience for our guests while offering value for money, whether you are visiting for a single treatment or for one of our excellent value half or whole day packages.” Annual Spa Club Membership is from only £90 per month and allows full use of the facilities, while a Single Month Spa Club Membership is available from £125. Membership Benefits are worth over £570 per annum when joining Hartwell Spa on an annual subscription. Members receive vouchers for the following: • A complimentary one night Bed and Breakfast stay in a double room at Hartwell House Hotel per membership and on joint membership. (Sunday to Thursday ~ subject to availability and excluding Bank Holidays), value £290. • One free night Bed and Breakfast on any one stay of two nights or more at Bodysgallen


Hall or Middlethorpe Hall per membership or joint membership ~ (subject to availability and excluding Bank Holidays), value £199 • Your choice of either a free two course lunch for one in the Spa Café or afternoon tea for one at Hartwell House when you bring a guest, value £30. • A £30 voucher towards a treatment of your choice at the Hartwell Spa • Two complimentary guest vouchers to the Hartwell Spa, value £32 • Two complimentary vouchers for tea or coffee in the Spa Café and Bar, value £5.20 Whether you decide on a day in the Spa, a month’s Spa Club trial, lunch at the House, or a relaxing spa or beauty treatment - you’ll find a visit to Hartwell House will soon have you feeling out of this world... l Hartwell House, Oxford Road, Buckinghamshire, HP17 8NR Website: Tel: 01296 747444 Email: Hartwell Spa Tel: 01296 746500 Email:


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Health & Beauty


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Sun day 31 Ju ly 2 6 01

WIM, 34.5km CYCLE, 5km RUN

If you’d like to get fitter, healthier or simply take on a personal challenge in 2017, why not do something special - get on your bike and help raise vital funds for Rennie Grove Hospice Care...

M, 23km CYCLE, 5km RUN

m CYCLE, 5km RUN

onsored challenges to test your ina and raise money to support h life-limiting illness.

Registered Charity No. 1140386



ocal charity, Rennie Grove Hospice Care is inviting RUN you to join the fun on its annual CYCLE cycling fundraiser and has opened registration for the 2017 Chilterns Cycle Challenge with a special Entrants must be 16 or over discounted Early Bird offer for those who sign up before January 7th, 2017. The charity is hoping that keen cyclists will take advantage of the offer by signing up while the offer is active, and using the opportunity to get friends and family involved too, as a great Christmas gift. The event takes place on March 19th. It will be the seventh IR_ccc_2017_ad_125x90_portrait:Layout 1 16/11/2016 16:04 Page 1 Team Forge line up in Kingsbury for last year’s Cycle Challenge Chilterns Cycle Challenge and promises to be the most exhilarating yet! The sponsored event, which starts and finishes in the centre of Aylesbury, is perfect both for people looking to A sponsored bike ride bike through the beautiful around the Chilterns with a Chilterns countryside, choice of a 35 or 75 mile route and for more committed Cruising through the Chilterns countryside cyclists who enjoy putting their limits to the test. With a thrilling 35 mile or mammoth 75 mile route to choose Sunday 19 March 2017 from, anyone can compete in a Starts in Aylesbury town centre demanding, thrilling race. Early Bird Adult entry for those raising money for the charity chilternscycle costs £18 for 35 miles and £26 for the 75 mile option, or £31 if you choose not to fundraise. The entry fee includes a medal on completion, water along the route, feed stations, a fully signed and marshalled route, mechanical support on the day and fundraising support from our wonderful events team. For more information on the Chilterns Cycle Challenge or to register, please visit www. l Rennie Grove Hospice Care Registered Charity Number: 1140386

The ultimate cycle challenge

01442 820740

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


The new Rogue Racing karting track

If you haven’t discovered Rogue Leisure’s fabulous bowling centre and indoor karting facility yet, it’s high time you hot-footed it down and took a look. Whatever your age, you won’t be disappointed... “


Rogue Leisure director Aidan Kirwan tries one of his new karts


t’s taken a while but we are finally there,” says a happy Aidan Kirwan. Two years ago the Directors of Rogue Leisure Limited completed the first stage of the new Rogue Leisure complex with the opening of Rogue Bowling - an exciting new ten pin bowling arcade in a large industrial unit off Gatehouse Way, Aylesbury. With 14 lanes of fun set in spacious, comfortable, air-conditioned surroundings and the added attraction of the Rogue Café and fully licenced bar, plus two bookable party rooms and plenty of free on-site parking right outside, it is not surprising it has proved a popular addition to the town’s amenities. At the time Aidan was also busy running

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

the successful Rogue Racing indoor karting business across town at Stocklake. It had always been the plan to relocate that to the new Rogue Leisure venue as well, but it’s taken a while and a lot of hard work to achieve this dream. The new Rogue Racing indoor karting track finally opened in August though and

has already been shortlisted for Karting Magazine’s Indoor Circuit Of The Year award! As you can see it’s an impressive arena. Designed and constructed with the help of specialist firm, 360 Karting, it’s the first track of its kind in UK and one of only a couple of kart tracks to boast a spectacularly banked corner. More than 300 metres long, the circuit

The Rogue Bowling arcade all turned out,” says Aidan, “It’s taken a while but the complex looks fantastic. The colours and design of the karting arena tie in nicely with the bowling centre but the lighting and track still retain their own atmosphere of edgy excitement.” Karting costs from £20 for 15 minutes (two sessions £36, 3 sessions £47, 4 sessions £57). ‘Arrive and Drive’ sessions are possible any day of the week but it’s best to phone first and check availability or book in advance (subject consists of long straights and eight competitive to T&Cs). corners, which make for close and exciting Coaching sessions are available for those racing in a professional and atmospheric who would like to progress their driving. environment, and is good for up to ten karts Some Rogue karters have gone on to begin at any one time. Overtaking is possible on all successful racing careers, moving from karting sections of the track - if you have the talent to racing sports cars in series such as the and the bottle! The track is a mix of concrete Ginnetta Junior Championship for 14-17 year and wooden boards and very smooth - perfect olds. Will Tregurtha, 16, from Milton Keynes when you’re sitting just inches above the trained at Rogue Racing and won the 2016 ground in a 270cc kart travelling at speeds championship, while Rogue staff member pushing 50mph! It took 12 weeks to construct, Geri Nicosia won Junior Fiestas and races has a special grip painted surface and a state-of sports cars in the Simpson Ginetta Junior the-art shock-absorbing safety barrier system. Championship. Rogue’s fleet of brand new high Kadet Training for ages 8-15 years (and over performance Sodi karts run on LPG (supplied 1.3m tall), takes place on Wednesdays from by local firm Jones & Cocks) and are a lot 5pm. It’s aimed at novice drivers, giving them quicker than the old Stocklake karts - the the confidence to drive on track safely and 270cc Honda engines provide impressive with other drivers of similar age and ability. acceleration, even from a standing start. Kadet parties, group bookings and kart and Rogue Racing is ideal for parties and can bowl packages are also available. cater for groups small and large. It is suitable Having won the Aylesbury Vale Best for all ages from eight to 80 years, assuming Leisure, Hospitality or Entertainment a minimum height of 1.3m, there’s a handy Business Award 2015, Rogue Bowling has viewing area with vending machines and already proved a success. There’s always a you can even hire a GoPro camera and film fun, family atmosphere there and the helpful yourself in action! and welcoming staff have done a great job “We are really pleased with the way it has of looking after the place too as it still looks

like new! It’s been designed to offer first-class bowling in comfortable surroundings plus a great range of freshly-prepared hot and cold food, snacks and drinks, including a fully licenced bar. Bowling starts at around £5 (adults) £4 (U16s) per game off peak.See website, pop in, or call for further information and to book. l Rogue Racing, Unit 6 The Point, Gatehouse Way, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP19 8DB Tel. 01296 330567 Email. Web: l Rogue Bowling, Unit 6 The Point, Gatehouse Way, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP19 8DB Tel. 01296 326888 Email. Web: Opening Hours: Mon-Thur: 10am-11pm; Fri/Sat: 10am-midnight; Sun: 10am-10pm

Indoor Karting 10% off at Rogue Racing with Vale Life Magazine! Present this voucher on booking your Rogue Racing arrive & drive session

10% off cost of your arrive and drive session. One voucher per person. Not to be used in conjunction with any other offer. Valid Mon-Thur until January 31st, 2017.

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


by Cathy Soughton

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Christmas Traditions


ith Christmas fast approaching (you may even be reading this after all the festivities are over), have you ever wondered how our ancestors celebrated Christmas? We all have festive traditions we enjoy at Christmas such as a roast turkey with all the trimmings, carols at church on Christmas Eve and a Christmas tree with fairy lights but how long have these been around? For our medieval ancestors, Christmas was an important religious festival. During the 12 days of Christmas, churches and other buildings were decorated with evergreens including rosemary, holly and ivy. Christmas boxes were distributed to servants and the poor whilst large amounts of brawn, roast beef, ‘plum pottage’, minced pies (made from meat) and ale were consumed and people celebrated by dancing, singing, playing games and performing stage plays. This came to an abrupt end

A prep school for boys and girls aged 3 - 13 years

during Oliver Cromwell’s Puritan Commonwealth in the 1640s when the drunkenness and revelry associated with Christmas was condemned and in 1647 Parliament banned the celebration of Christmas, replacing it with a day of fasting. Under Charles II Christmas festivities were restored but traditions remained largely unchanged until Victorian times. Christmas trees had been popular in Germany for centuries but it was only following Queen Victoria’s marriage to her German husband Prince Albert in 1840 that some of the German traditions were introduced here. An engraving of the Royal Family celebrating Christmas at Windsor Castle in front of a decorated Christmas tree was published in 1848 and the idea quickly caught on although initially they only tended to be displayed in public buildings. From the 1860s the Bucks Herald reported that some local schools had Christmas trees with small presents as a treat for the children, whilst trees were also provided by benefactors to the hospital and workhouse in Aylesbury. Christmas cards were first

Stirring the pudding 1876 style

introduced in 1843 by Sir Henry Cole, a civil servant who helped set up the new Post Office and thought it would be a good way for ordinary people to use the service. They gradually became popular, especially from the 1870s when the cost of sending Christmas cards by post was reduced. Most people now have turkey on Christmas day but again they only became popular in the Victorian period, replacing the previous favourite of roast beef. Market traders in our local towns sold turkey from the 1860s and the local Aylesbury duck was popular too. Historically celebrations were centred around the church but by the later Victorian period other events such as Boxing Day hunts,

Ashfold sChool

brass band parades and pantomimes regularly took place. Christmas festivities now seem to start much earlier but originally workers only had Christmas Day off. Over time employers also gave their servants small gifts and the day off on Boxing Day - so known as money collected for the poor in alms boxes would be opened on the day following Christmas Day. Some employers, notably the Rothschilds, who in the later 1800s owned seven country houses and various estates in the Vale of Aylesbury, treated their employees and local villagers to an annual Christmas party with food and entertainment - well received at a time when many people had little spare money to spend at Christmas. Times may have changed since then but many of the traditions we enjoy today have their roots in the Victorian period if not earlier. Merry Christmas! l Cathy Soughton is a professional genealogist and architectural historian providing family history and house history research - gift vouchers are available and make unique presents. W:, E:, T: 01296 624845

‘The quality of pupils’ achievements and learning is excellent’ ISI 2015

Open Morning Saturday 4 February 2017 10am – 12 noon Ashfold School Dorton House Dorton Aylesbury Buckinghamshire HP18 9NG


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

A leading independent prep school set in thirty stunning acres in the Buckinghamshire countryside. Scholarships available for children joining in Year 7. For more information, please contact Mrs Fiona Grainge, Registrar E: T: 01844 238237 @AshfoldSchool

& Come s! Visit U


Column: Bookworm with Ben Churchill

Book reviews

The Essex Serpent - by Sarah Perry

Set in 1893 and firmly rooted in the author’s home county of Essex, the novel centres on the character of Cora Seaborne, a widow freed from a controlling, unhappy marriage. Retreating to the Essex countryside with her son, she hears the rumours surrounding the so-called ‘Essex Serpent’, a creature of folklore being blamed for a spate of deaths and disturbances and the cause of escalating panic in the local community. Her ensuing investigations bring her into contact with a clergyman, William Ransome, a man convinced of finding the answer to local hysteria in faith, just as Cora is on finding it in science. Despite their differing opinions, their lives become ever-more enmeshed, finding themselves bound to each other in ways neither could anticipate.

Keeping On Keeping On

by Alan Bennett Alan Bennett’s third collection of prose Keeping On Keeping On follows in the footsteps of the

been seen before, this lavish collection showcases the beauty of Earth from above, and is the perfect visual time capsule of Tim’s remarkable trip, which captured the imaginations of millions of children and adults across the world.

Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Cookbook

phenomenally successful Writing Home and Untold Stories, each published ten years apart. This latest collection contains Bennett’s peerless diaries 2005 to 2015, reflecting on a decade that saw four premieres at the National Theatre (The Habit of Art, People, Hymn and Cocktail Sticks), a West End double-bill transfer, and the films of The History Boys and The Lady in the Van. There’s a provocative sermon on private education given

before the University at King’s College Chapel, Cambridge, and ‘Baffled at a Bookcase’ offers a passionate defence of the public library.

Hello, is this Planet Earth?: My View from the International Space Station - by Tim Peake

Based on over 150 of Tim’s stunning photographs that he took on board the International Space Station, many of which have not

by Jamie Oliver Bestselling authors Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Cookbook is packed with all the classics you need for the big day and beyond, as well as loads of delicious recipes for edible gifts, party food and new ways to love those leftovers. It’s everything you need for the best Christmas ever. Happy New Year from all the staff at Waterstones Aylesbury! l Reviews by Ben Churchill, Senior Bookseller at Waterstones, Aylesbury Tel: 01296 423153 Web:

Pardon my English! A local dialect ‘Call My Bluff’ by Jacot de Boinod Can you guess the right definitions of the following words? 1) Drogue

3) Jonnock or Jannock

2) West

4) Pilch

(Buckinghamshire dialect) A) dry-humoured B) a timber carriage C) a scarecrow (Buckinghamshire dialect)

A) a stye in the eye B) a single ear of corn C) to die, to perish

(Hertfordshire dialect) A) fair, honest B) a pathway up to a steep hill C) a spade’s depth in digging (Hertfordshire dialect) A) to flick a marble with finger and thumb B) to play with one’s food C) a triangular flannel worn by babies

l Adam Jacot de Boinod was a researcher for the

television series QI and is the author of The Meaning of Tingo and Other Extraordinary Words from around the World, published by Penguin Books. Having researched our rural dialect, he is setting a fun ‘Call-My-Bluff Quiz for Vale Life readers - mind your language now...


In essence you don’t have a Will if you die without one Wills from £80 if you don’t have one Email:


Covers Health & Finance 2 home visits, advice and certification * OPG charges of £110 per application are extra Email:

Edward Home Briscoe MIPW Compliant with the IPW Code of Practice

Tel: 01491 638075 Mobile: 07962 157843 Bakery Lodge, Skirmett, RG9 6TD Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


ANSWERS: 1 (B) a timber carriage. 2 (A) a stye in the eye. 3 (A) fair, honest. 4 (C) a triangular flannel worn by babies.


Column: Down to business with Philippa Batting

Who’s your favourite? B

uckinghamshire’s businesses are there to serve, to meet needs, create jobs and drive the economy. No one starts a business to be patted on the back, but that simply makes it more important that others recognise and reward the achievements of entrepreneurs and their teams. That’s why I’d like you to think about what you, the residents of Buckinghamshire, could do for your favourite business this Christmas? As luck would have it, I have a ready-made answer: you could recommend that the business enters the Buckinghamshire Business Awards 2017. For the last few years the Buckinghamshire Business Awards have bestowed trophies and kudos to dozens of local businesses that have shone brightly in their field. The 2017 awards opened to entries last month and not only can a business enter itself, others can


nominate a business that they feel deserves recognition. There are 12 categories in all: Excellence in Customer Service; Apprentice and Young Person Employer; Business Leader; Enterprising Charity; International Trader; Leisure, Tourism & Hospitality Business; New Business; Small Business; Growth Business; and Best in Aylesbury, Wycombe, and Chiltern & South Bucks Districts. The icing on the cake is the Company of the Year Award, previously won by the likes of Global Infusion Group and last year’s winners Monodraught. Whatever your favourite business supplies, be it food, materials,

advice or a service, this is your chance to say ‘thank you’. Helping a business to win an award means you are helping to instil pride within its employees and you will provide the business with the chance to stand out from its competitors. Ultimately, you will be ‘paying it forward’, playing a part in creating a connected, engaged, positive local business community. Buckinghamshire Business First had its own success story recently when we were awarded an Enterprising Britain Award for ‘Improving the Business Environment’. Winning awards was not something on the minds of our founding investors in 2011, but it is welcome nonetheless. We exist to help businesses to thrive and we hope we play a part in making Buckinghamshire a great place to do business. As I said, winning awards is not usually uppermost in the minds of

l Philippa Batting is MD of Buckinghamshire Business First (BBF). Based in Saunderton, BBF works to support and facilitate success within the business community and to create a dynamic environment in which local business can flourish. Membership is free - visit: for more details.

Colour Photocopying l Canvas Printing l Scanning Colour Poster Printing l Personalised Invitations l Laminating l Comb Binding l Booklet Printing l Leaflets/Flyers l Large Format Colour or B&W Printing l

Cash flow problems?

Tel: 01296 420409

              

Creditors demanding payment? Demands from HM Revenue & Customs?

Unit 2/3 Duck Farm Court, Station Way West, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP20 2SQ Email: Web:

PErfEcT PrinTing & dEsign Your full Service Studio

Pressure on the overdraft? Call us on 01296 433303 for a FREE initial consultation

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

business owners so that’s why we need you to ensure they get the recognition they deserve. You have until 31st January 2017 to recommend your favourite business for the Buckinghamshire Business Awards. Visit, where you will see the link to recommend a business.


Debt problems?


Down to business

Printing & Copying Services for individuals & companies

fieldstead insolvency


Philippa Batting

     

5% Off

ALL of our products* with this advert *Offer for limited period only

Midshires House, Midshires Business Park Smeaton Close, Aylesbury HP19 8HL T 01296 769609 E

New Business Rates Directive


or commercial property owners and tenants alike, news that your 2017 draft business rates revaluation is now live on the Government website, is important information in planning budgets for the years ahead. The last rating valuation was 2010. There will be winners and losers in the 2017 revaluation and there will be a transitional phasing in of the monitory change over the next five years.

to let This newly refurbished property provides a concrete portal framed building, comprising 3 bays with brick and profile metal cladding to all elevations and benefiting from the following: various loading doors and a generous

We have analysed a cross section of our clients’ properties and the effects vary considerably with location and property type. For example, one office scheme in Cressex, High Wycombe, is to enjoy a reduction in its business rates bills of up to 60%, while a modern industrial scheme, also in Cressex, High Wycombe, will suffer a 5 - 10% increase. Small businesses will benefit from some increased transitional savings from

20 Vale Industrial Estate 20,883 sq ft

secure yard to the rear, forecourt car parking, eaves height 5.5m, ample WC accommodation (Joint Agents Fields Commercial).

To Let

The Gatehouse, Aylesbury Suite 1: 3,106 sq ft, Suite 2: 4,912 sq ft

Newly refurbished offices, located on the ground floor of ‘The Gatehouse’. Accommodation provides high quality air conditioned offices, full access raised floors throughout, excellent on-site parking and pleasant landscaped gardens.

(Joint Agents Bray Fox Smith)

To Let

Lynx Gym Premises 70 Rabans Close, Aylesbury: 10,129 sq ft

Available due to proposed relocation this modern, detached, industrial/ warehouse unit is in a prominent location on the corner of Rabans Lane & Rabans Close, 1.5 miles from Aylesbury town centre. Currently used as a gymnasium, with fitted 2 storey office & ancillary accommodation to the front, full height industrial/

warehouse to rear; gas central heating to office/ancillaries; Gas blower heating to industrial; WCs / disabled / changing & showering facilities, fitted kitchen, parking 38 cars (Joint Agents Brown & Lee)

April 2017, as well as further savings on an expected reduction in the small business multiplier. The multiplier is used to ascertain the amount of rates payable (before any Government transitional discounts). The rateable value is the rental value of your premises at April 2015. Type ‘VOA rates’ into your search engine to find the Government’s Valuation Office website and see how your rates have been affected. For further information please contact Alan Chandler on: 01296 398 383.

to let

Sunley House Office Suites, Aylesbury - suites from approx. 2,000 sq ft

The 3rd and 4th floor office suites at Sunley House are available on flexible terms. The open plan office space and common areas have/will be refurbished to a high standard. Amenities include good on-site parking and The offices are within easy passenger lifts to the 4 walking distance of the town floors. centre and rail and bus stations.

For sale

Space Business Centre 27 units from 367 sq ft to 908 sq ft Available as investments or with vacant possession

SBC Aylesbury comprises two terraces of modern units, built in 2009, ranging from 367 sq ft to 908 sq ft and fitted with a mezzanine floor. The 27 units total 19,541 sq ft and benefit from eaves height of approximately 5.5m, dedicated unit and visitor parking and

to let

loading access for each unit. Units are suitable for multiple uses, which include industrial, workshop, project space, warehouse, storage and office.

Open Storage Land Westcott Venture Park: 1.5 Acres

A level and surfaced 1.5 Acre Plot of Open Storage Land available on the Western Development Area at Westcott Venture Park, which fronts the A41 between Aylesbury and Bicester providing fast access to the M40 and M1 motorways. The site, available from January 2017, benefits from Fuel Interceptor, Water and the following amenities: Secure Electricity. Site with 24/7 On-Site Security, (Joint Agents Brown & Lee CCTV and Perimeter Fence, and Lambert Smith Hampton).

Call our Aylesbury Team - Alan Chandler and Terri Clarke on: 01296 398383 Lettings | Acquisitions | Investments | Valuations | Property Management Rent Reviews and Lease Renewals | Development / Planning Advice | Business Rates

A new perspective on property

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17



Column: Safe as houses with Nigel Grace

Just take your time A

s a quantity surveyor, I am often asked why projects are costing more than expected. And when I look into these projects, it is often quite clear why – clients have started work too quickly in their enthusiasm to get their house transformed into something that they have dreamed of. When you are planning building work at your home it pays to take your time - to ensure you get what you are looking for without any major surprises. Surprises are great at Christmas, but they are not what you want when carrying out a building project. So, before you get going with any building what do you need to consider? 1. What are you looking to achieve – what are the must-haves and what are the nice-to-haves? Sit down and make a list of what you would like done to your house – this will enable you to brief your designer about what you are looking for. Prioritise the things

that will make a difference to you and to the value of your house. If you find you have more money available, then you can look at the things which are not so high on your list of priorities. Before you ask builders to quote on your project you should have finalised what you are going to do and have a good idea of how much it is going to cost. This should mean that there are no surprises when you get the quotes back and as you have decided on what you want, the chances of you changing your mind or forgetting something are reduced. Change on a building project only leads to additional costs and delays, so the more thorough you can be in planning your build, the more confident you can be that you won’t face any unexpected costs. 2. How much money would you be willing to spend – or can afford A realistic budget is essential – you need to consider what you are planning to spend and also will that

mean that your house will increase in value by at least that amount? You don’t really want to spend £40,000 on your house to find that it has only gone up £20,000 in value. Speak to a designer, a quantity surveyor or if you know one a friendly builder. Sometimes even if you have a friend who has had work done on their house they may be willing to let you know how much it cost. You need to make sure that your design and budget are totally aligned. 3. Is my house suitable for what I would like to do? You might dream of converting your loft into a master bedroom suite but is there enough headroom available and are your existing foundations strong enough to take the extra weight of the additional floor? If extending, do you have sufficient space to build what you would like?Does your existing boiler have sufficient capacity to heat the additional floor space? If you don’t know the answer to these questions and others – it is

Nigel Grace

Safe as houses best to speak to someone who can help you - an architect/designer, building surveyor or even that friendly builder again. Ask for their advice to see what is possible. It may also be a worthwhile investment having them survey your home, so you can see what issues you may have, before you commit, or dream too far! If you follow these three key steps then you should be on the way to transforming your home whilst keeping costs to a minimum. l Nigel Grace is a chartered quantity surveyor experienced in all forms of residential projects who has built and redeveloped many houses himself. Nigel can be contacted on:

fully flexible, fully-furnished, fully all-inclusive office space one monthly fee with no risk or long-term commitment & contracts from as little as 4 months space that can grow with you as your business grows access to on-site business support services as and when you need them vibrant, modern, collaborative environment for support, connections and networking follow us 40

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

find the right space for your business         01844 211080

‘The Art of Wood Burning’

JØtul “fighting the cold since 1853”

The most comprehensive showroom in Oxfordshire Over 75 stoves and 15 under fire on display Kiln dried and Eco logs

Jøtul – logo

HETAS registered. Ample free parking. Boundary Business Park, Wheatley Road, Garsington, OX44 9EJ Showroom open Monday-Friday, 10am-4pm, Saturday 10am-1pm For technical advice it is advisable to make an appointment

01865 361505 Featured stoves from JØtul Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Step inside by Polly Gibbs

Winter Retreat The Art of Comfort

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Cabin 10 at Soho Farmhouse

It’s certainly been a year that will go down in history, making it no coincidence that in a world gone crazy we want to retreat...


rom the beginning of time our fundamental needs have been warmth, light, food… and decoration - even our cave dwelling forebearers painted the walls of their caves, right? Interiors have a huge impact on how we feel, which is something I have always factored into my projects, it’s not just the look. Our homes are cocoons, havens of cheer away from dire news and grey days, where little nooks make the perfect spaces to curl up with a book and recharge. So, how to create a little nest in which to hibernate? Well it’s about simple pleasures, absolutely about the details and totally about comfort. For example, I was invited to my friend Al’s home for coffee yesterday. When I arrived, her stove top Alessi kettle was bubbling away (such a design classic), candles flickered, faux fur cushions beckoned and Burleigh cups and saucers elevated it from a cuppa to an event. It had a tinge of nostalgia and made me feel so at home that I had that content, warm fuzzy feeling for the rest of the day. It reminded me that feeling toasty warm at home is something I remain truly grateful


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

for, when so many suffer cold. I’m lucky to have good friends to surround me and books to dive into with candles for a touch of magic. It’s that simple; warmth, company and comfort. Light the woodburner, cluster an array of candles and lanterns together in a mix of sizes at varying heights for an instant cosy atmosphere. If you have children try popping a filament bulb in a tablelamp for a vintage electric lowlight. Add aroma; my favourite scented candle hands down is Cowshed’s ‘Moody Cow’ with a balancing blend of rose geranium, linden blossom and frankincense that smells utterly divine when lit. It’s not overpowering and is made from 100% soy wax with essential oils so you can pour some out, let it cool slightly and rub it into your skin. Better still it’s currently on offer at their Bicester Village pop-up for £22 (usually £34). Enjoy down time feeling utterly content and relaxed in a space that is super comfortable. Imagine a lazy Sunday afternoon watching favourite movies whilst wrapped in tactile blankets and throws,

Polly Gibbs

Step inside

Polly Gibbs, Creative Director at Coco Design, shares her down to earth approach to interiors, from design secrets to trends and everything in between. that add texture, pattern and definition to a room. These lovelies (opposite page) are by locally based Tolly McRae - made from British sourced merino, alpaca, cashmere and lambswool that’s been whipped up by expert weavers within the British Isles. Drape over a sofa, chair, the end of a bed, or roll up and nestle in a basket ready to use. Grab one

Step inside by Polly Gibbs

Tolly McRae Winter Whites of their scarves from £29 to wrap around you on chilly days after a brisk walk too. Create a cosy nest for a lie-in. Layers are key here so buy the best bedding you can afford, preferably in natural materials that let your skin breathe. Egyptian cotton is cooler and crisp if you tend to overheat, whilst sateen will feel silkier and warmer. If your pillow folds in half

without springing back then it’s time for a new one - take time to get the right level of support. Duvets filled with natural down are like clouds, warm yet light and airy and available in a range of togs. Quality duvets are expensive, but with activity trackers highlighting the importance of sleep they are so worth the money in the long-run. Try a cabin at Soho Farmhouse atop a Hypnos mattress layered

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Soho Farmhouse Bedroom with Frette bedlinen. It’ll be the best sleep ever and the bedlinen is available via their new retail venture Soho Home. Sale season is a great time to buy what I term investment pieces, or The White Company at Bicester Village has 33% off a select range all year round. If you love Loft, Tahoe or New England styles check out Lexington Company who have a

huge homeware collection online - I particularly like their Urban Collective (image page 45) bedding in washed gray (bedspread £139, duvet cover from £95, pillowcase from £25, cushion cover £39 and wool throw at £129). Being an American company (hence gray) they offer throws at 260x240cm that’s big enough to cover a Ceasar size bed at an enormous 245(w) x 220cm. Continued on page 45

bespoke doors & windows in timber, aluminium & composite rs

10 yealying

of supp rs and de self buil provers home im

We manufacture, supply and install:

folding sliding doors sliding doors french doors single doors


01487 740044

The Old Dairy, Lawn Farm Business Centre, Grendon Underwood, Bicester, Buckinghamshire HP18 0QX

windows shaped glazed screens entrance doors roof lights

VISITS ARE BY APPOINTMENT ONLY to book call our Head Office on 01487 740044 Open Tuesday to Friday 9am - 5pm, Saturday 9am - 2pm Closed Sundays, Mondays and Bank Holidays

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Opening Times: Monday to Friday 10am until 5pm Saturday 10am until 4pm. Any other time by appointment


•Professional Fitting Opening Times: Monday to Friday 10am until 5pm Tel: 01296 337181 Mob: 07767370067 •Very Competitive Saturday 10am until 4pm. Any other time by appointment Web: Tel: 01296 Mob: 07767370067 for337181 Residential and 23 DUCK FARM COURT, STATION WAY, AYLESBURY, HP20 2SQ Web: Commercial work 23traditional DUCK FARM COURT, STATIONvinyl, WAY, AYLESBURY, HP20 2SQ WE WILL NOT BE BEATEN ON QUALITY OR SERVICE l Independent, family run carpet l Carpet, sisal, coir, hardwood l Extensive range of Charles Huntington Flooring to suit all and flooring specialists l Exclusive suppliers of Roger Oates and contemporary flooring •Carpets Charles Huntington Flooring Charles Huntington Flooring WEcan WILL NOT BE BEATENyet ON hard-wearing QUALITY OR SERVICE •Expert Advice Charles Huntington Flooring beautiful runners l Expert fitting service at competitive prices - we Budgets and rugs in our local area l Domestic and commercial match or better your quote •Expert Advice Charles Flooring Providing adviceHuntington and installations Advice •Expert Advice•Free •Professional Fitting Advice to private customers, professionals•Expert and •Professional Fitting Quotes•Expert •Expert Advice •Professional Fitting •Professional Fitting contractors for over 25 years •Professional Fitting •Very Competitive •No Obligation •Professional Fitting for Residential and •Very Competitive •Very Competitive •Very Competitive •Very Competitive Extensive experience with Commercial for Residential and Residentialwork and for Residential•Free and •Very Competitive Parking for thatched, heritage and listed buildings. Commercial work for Residentialwork and Commercial Commercial work E


N S TA L • I L








• ST O



Charles Huntington Flooring IC


G • GU


for Residential •Carpets to suit and all Commercial work •Carpets to suit all Budgets Opening Times: Monday to Friday •10am 5pm CARPETS VINYLSuntil • SISAL • STAIR RODS CARPETS • VINYLS • SISAL • STAIR RODS CARPETS Saturday • VINYLS • SISAL • STAIR RODS STAIRother RODS CARPETS • VINYLS SISAL • Any SAFETY FLOORING • WOOD • BINDING TAPES until•RODS 4pm. time•Free by appointment CARPETS • VINYLS • 10am SISAL & • STAIR SAFETY FLOORING • WOODQuotes • BINDING TAPES Stoves, Installations Servicing SAFETY FLOORING • WOOD • BINDING TAPES SAFETY FLOORING • WOOD • BINDING TAPES SAFETY FLOORINGTel: • WOOD • BINDING TAPES Opening Times: Monday to Friday 10am until 5pm 01296 337181 Mob: 07767370067 Opening Times: Monday to Friday 10am until 5pm •No Obligation Saturday 10am until Any other time by appointment Opening Times: Monday to Friday 10am until 5pm Opening Times: Monday to Friday until 5pm 4pm. Opening Times: MondayBucks to Friday until 5pm North Mill Road Bledlow HP2710am 9QP 01844 342400 Saturday 10am until 4pm. Any other time by appointment Web: Saturday 4pm. Any by appointment Saturday until time 4pm. Any other time Tel: by appointment 07767370067 Saturday10am 10amuntil until 4pm.10am Any other other time by appointment Tel:01296 01296 337181 337181 Mob: Mob: 07767370067 Tel: 337181 Mob:337181 07767370067 Tel: 01296 Mob: 07767370067 Web: •FreeHP20 Parking Tel:01296 0129623 337181 DUCK Mob: FARM07767370067 COURT, STATION WAY, AYLESBURY, 2SQ Unrivalled customer service through the commitment of our family team.

Commercial work •Carpets Budgetsto suit all •Carpets to suit all •Carpets to suit all Budgets •Carpets to suit all Budgets Budgets •Free Quotes CARPETS • VINYLS • SISAL • STAIR RODS Budgets Oxfordshire • Buckinghamshire • •Free Quotes •Free Quotes •Free Quotes •No Obligation Hertfordshire • Berkshire • and beyond •Free Quotes •No SAFETY FLOORING • •No WOOD • BINDING TAPES •No Obligation Obligation •FreeObligation Parking •No Obligation •Free Contact us to book your free home THE BEST INParking home •Free Parking •Free Parking survey or to visit our showroom to see •Free Parking


the stoves in action.



CARPETS • VINYLS • SISAL • STAIR RODS SAFETY FLOORING • WOOD BINDING High quality bespoke kitchens and furniture, handmade by skilled• craftsmen in BuckinghamshireTAPES Complete Kitchens | Bedrooms | Wardrobes | Cupboards | Shelving | Storage Solutions | Furniture | Desks | Offices

Opening Times: Monday to Friday 10am until 5pm Saturday 10am until 4pm. Any other time by appointment


‘Mark’s attention to details, such as the plate rack and bespoke drawer dividers, make everything a pleasure to look at and use.’ Unit 23, Kemps Farm, Chapel Road, Ford, Buckinghamshire, HP17 8XG Tel: 01296 658660 Mob: 07754 409203 Email: mark@ Website: 44

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Step inside by Polly Gibbs

Lexington Urban Collective Continued from page 43 Well if you’ve got the space and won’t miss cuddles from your spouse, whom you won’t be able to reach, check out The Big Bed Company. January is the month to recover from the festive excess and set out realistic lifestyle tweaks, rather than unachievable resolutions. Slow down, take walks and spend more time at home doing different things. Create a cosy social vibe a few

evenings a month to have friends and family over to play board games (why do I only do this at Christmas when it’s so much fun?). What about hosting a book club, Sunday cinema with popcorn and fizz, wine tasting to share and taste friends’ favourites, or have a spa night with facepacks and nail polish. Keep it simple so you have time to enjoy it too. And, when you’re ready to venture out, or fancy a bit of inspo, check out Piste Bar in Soho, a little gem hidden

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Piste Bar, Soho below the sophisticated Archer Street Cocktail Bar. It’s a warm, snug space inspired by traditional Scandinavian mountain cabins and Swiss chalets, perfect to escape from all that retail therapy. Decked out with all the luxuries of a ski lodge including reindeer fur, vintage skis, reclaimed rafters, sheepskin stools and a toasty fireplace. Enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of the Alps through custom made windows as you sip an Apres-Ski or Cable Car cocktail. Scrummy!

Sources ; (Piste Bar). l Polly Gibbs is an award-winning designer, Decorex100 Interiors Influencer and Amara Interiors Blog Award Finalist. Her website is currently undergoing a revamp. Email:

Your style, your kitchen, designed by us

Our Lifetime Guarantee* helps you buy with confidence (*t&cs apply)

Win a weekend away to Italy. Book your free design appointment today to enter see in store for details

The Italian sense of beauty is here… Stoneworld Kitchens 43A Upper High St Thame OX9 2DW

01844 261768 Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Finally there is a real alternative to timber windows.

A fully stocked showroom including Solidor


Omega Homestyle has over 25 years’ experience of designing and fitting premium doors, windows and conservatories We firmly believe that by keeping the entire process as stress free as possible, we are adding to your enjoyment of your new windows, doors and conservatories. For an individually tailored service and to find out exactly what we can do for you please contact us or come and visit our newly refurbished showroom. Omega Homestyle, Woodway Farm Industrial Estate, Bicester Road, Long Crendon, Aylesbury, Bucks HP18 9EP Tel: 01844

201888, email: or visit:

Lots to see! QuaLity products


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Free parking

Hot stuff!

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

At the Sky House Design Centre you’ll find some of the most exciting and innovative home design brands. From flooring to fires, worktops to windows - a collection of top quality products and suppliers, set to fire you up with ideas and inspiration...


ire has been bringing people together since man first learnt to harness its power. Today woodburning stoves have become the de facto choice for many wishing to combine sustainability with the aesthetic of fire and flame, but many designs are very traditional and not particularly inspiring to the modern eye. Urban Fires was founded in 2010 to satisfy the demand for real woodburning fireplaces with a contemporary twist – for both indoor and outdoor use. Founder, Tony Young, has been in the industry since forming the Wonderfire company in 1976 and is one of the fireplace industry’s most inspirational leaders in innovation and creative design. In just four short years, Urban Fires has become Europe’s best known supplier of gas and woodburning outside fireplaces. The Urban Fires range of woodburning appliances also includes firepits, firetables and firebowls and an innovative collection of high efficiency gas fireplaces, for indoor and outdoor use. Great design Urban Fires’ wood-burning indoor fireplaces use retractable sliding glass doors that combine the heat output of a closed stove with the appearance of a

traditional hearth. By simply lifting the glass door, one opts for the safety and low-energy aspect of a closed stove, but without any visible metal frame there is also the direct, warming appeal of an open fire. Urban Fires set out to design a range of wood-burning fireplaces which combine minimalist features with maximum heating pleasure - and absolute safety. Everyone will enjoy burning real logs, without a visible frame, thanks to the sliding mesh fire-screen that guarantees an exclusive view into the fire but with full protection from sparks and little fingers. Each appliance can fit into all types of architecture. The contemporary but conservative designs, with their made-tomeasure options, give endless possibilities in style, design and dimension.

combustion process; low in emissions, with a minimum consumption of the most sustainable fuel - wood. An automatic flue gas regulator reduces heat loss, prevents annoying smoke flow-back and regulates the heat in the interests of efficiency. The combustion chamber is finished with black vertical ribbed cast iron, for improved radiant heat output. The appliances are an ideal solution for the customer seeking a wood-burning fireplace which combines respect for the environment with contemporary design. Urban Fires can be seen at the Sky House Design Centre, Amersham. Visit their website at: for more information. l Sky House Design Centre, Raans Road, Amersham, Buckinghamshire, HP6 6JQ Tel: 01494 722880 Email: Web: Make an appointment now to visit the Sky House Design Centre: Mon-Fri, 9am to 5:30pm; Sat, 9am to 4pm. Urban Fires Limited - Tel: 0207 183 1806

Optimum efficiency The high performance of these fireplaces is achieved thanks to an outstanding secondary combustion - an environmentally-friendly Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Christmas wreaths Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Real Living

by Charlotte Bolton

When it comes to decoration, Christmas is a time for mixing tradition with a little contemporary flair and Christmas wreaths are no exception…


he Christmas Wreath is now a decorative, seasonal tradition. Some believe that initially wreaths were hung on doors in Ancient Rome to represent victory. In Christianity, the Christmas wreath was used to symbolize Christ. The circular shape, with no beginning or end, represents eternity or life never ending, while the evergreen, most frequently used in making wreathes, symbolises growth and everlasting life. Pre-Christian Germanic people gathered wreaths of evergreen and lit fires, during the cold December darkness, as signs of hope in a coming spring and renewed light. This may have developed into the advent wreath which is a circle of evergreen with four candles and nothing to do with Ronnie Barker! Today wreaths come in all shapes and sizes and can be handmade at home or at a local wreathmaking class, which can be a lot of fun. M&S Mini white pinecone wreath, £15 So if you haven’t already decked your front door in time honoured fashion, get in the Christmas spirit quick and hang a pretty wreath on your door or in your hallway to welcome guests at this festive time. Gingerbread man Christmas wreath, Choose between a fresh foliage £15, Paperchase design for ‘immediate’ style or a Continued on page 50


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Charlotte Bolton

Pom pom wreath, £20, Paperchase

Red berries and fir cones wreath, £25, National Trust

Peacock feather wreath, £41, Etsy

Christmas bauble wreath, £10, Wilko

Real Living

Blue tinsel wreath, £1, Poundland

NEW SHOWROOM NOW OPEN New Showroom now open: 6 Swan Walk, Thame, Oxfordshire, OX9 3HN


Operate your garage door from anywhere in the house BIG BRAND NAMES

Based in Thame, Oxfordshire we supply and install a range of garage doors. Whether it’s a space saving Roller Garage Door, a Sectional Garage Door for extra insulation or a new Up and Over Garage Door our products are of the highest quality with a wide choice of colours and materials.

01844 212152 |


At home with our stone


Please contact us (by phone or email) AS SOON AS POSSIBLE to confirm that the vertisement above is acceptable, or if you require any amends. If emailing or leaving a voicem t is essential that you have confirmation from us that we’ve received your message. If we don’ Flooring fireplaces hear from you before our deadline, we will use the advert as above in Paving our next edition(s) and you will be invoiced as booked. All advert designs are copyright Chiltern Directories Ltd. nd must Unbeatable not be used in any other publications or websites unless we have givenPrices written approv Choice | Unbeatable Quality | Unbeatable at which time we will also supply you with a print ready file. We reserve the right to charge a Free Lifetimerelease Guarantee* | Free Local Delivery *T&Cs apply fee for advert designs.

Call today to book your free consultation with our stone experts Tel: 01844 279274 Stoneworld, Views Farm, Great Milton, OX44 7NW Stoneworld Flooring & Kitchens 43A Upper High Street Thame OX9 2DW

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Real Living

by Charlotte Bolton Floral table decorations Festive fruits wreath, £45, John Lewis

Geometric christmas wreath by Snork, £38, Not on the High Street

Continued from page 48 more contemporary piece that can be stored away and used again and again. But if you’re stuck for ideas – and need a helping hand - here are some

Hand crafted Paper mistletoe wreath, £25.95

of this year’s favourites from the high street and online retailers… Festive Style Secrets Follow these handy hints for displaying your wreath

The Contemporary Home Brussel Sprout Wreath, £35

Faux antler wreath, £25, Cox and Cox

Hanging out If you live in a rented home, pick up a pack of 3M command hooks. A damagefree solution, they don’t harm walls or doors when removed. Great outdoors Pick a wreath that’s suitable for outdoor use if you plan on hanging it outside. Alternatively, consider hanging it in a window. Fresh foilage If you buy a fresh wreath, spritz it with water occasionally to help it last longer. They are best suited to being

outdoors in cool temperatures. l To find out how your home could be featured in a UK homes magazine visit my website: Share your home interior ideas with others in a magazine! It’s fun, and free!

Your only difficulty will be in deciding just which stone to choose… Leading independent supplier of high quality Natural and Composite Stone with new showroom and workshop in Grendon Underwood. Stone experts with more than thirty years experience. Internal and external Stone Flooring including: limestone, marble, sandstone, slate, terracotta & travertine, porcelain & ceramic tiles and mosaics plus contemporary alternatives such as wood effect porcelain ‘boards’, patterned tiles and digitally printed & glazed porcelain tiles. Bespoke service, specialist knowledge, extensive contacts. Stone renovation service.

Visit our showroom & workshop, open Monday to Friday, 8am-5pm at: Unit 2 & 3, Lawn Farm Business Centre, Grendon Underwood, Nr Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP18 0QX T: 01296 770859 E: W: 50

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Column: Nick Phillips ‘Good to give’

No home for Christmas


hristmas for many is the one time of year they get to spend time at home with friends and family. And for most the home is warm and cosy with cards and decorations. I know it’s a cliché but Christmas does make me think of how lucky I am and how difficult it is for families and single people who don’t have a home. In Bucks there are officially around 37 people living on the street. But those who work in the area of homelessness tell me this is an underestimate as many people don’t want to be found, so keep a low profile at night. This Christmas it is estimated by Shelter that 120,000 children in Britain will be homeless. There is no single reason why people become homeless. According to national charity Homeless Link a relationship breakdown is the main reason people give, but there are often lots of factors involved and people find themselves homeless after a long chain of life events. Not having a home can make it

harder for people to find a job, stay healthy and maintain relationships; only 6 in every 100 homeless people are in work, compared to 70 in 100 of the general population and 56 in every 100 homeless people will experience long-term physical health issues compared to 29 in every 100 of the general population. Although we have a higher than average household income our area is not immune to homelessness and this Christmas events will be taking place across the district to help people who need it. One such event is the annual free Christmas lunch at St Mary’s Church in Aylesbury. This wonderful event has been running for over twenty years and isn’t just for the homeless but for anyone who wants to spend their day with others. Run by volunteers this lunch makes a real difference to the lives of the people who come along. (They’ve got enough volunteers for this Christmas but are already looking for volunteers for 2017 so do get in touch if you’re interested!) Need and homelessness don’t just

happen at Christmas. Aylesbury Housing Action Group (AHAG) are there all year round to support adults who are homeless or facing homelessness. They run drop-in centres which offer advice and support as well as hot drinks, food and the use of showers and washing machines. During the winter months they run an emergency accommodation service for people who are in desperate need. Michelle, who works with the volunteers at AHAG, told me they couldn’t manage without their volunteers: “Our team of volunteers makes such a difference to the work we do and the people who need us. We provide help and support to our clients in a variety of ways and our volunteers get involved in so many of those: being a friendly welcoming face, meeting clients, liaising with case workers, helping prepare food, showing people how to use the washing machine… no two days are ever the same! At the moment we’re looking for people with marketing experience who can help

Nick Phillips

Good to give raise awareness of how to prevent homelessness across Aylesbury Vale. “This time of year can be really tough for many of our clients and it’s great that our team can make a difference. We’d love new people to join us to keep that help going through the rest of the year too.” Volunteers who spend time with the clients at AHAG and other charities are often surprised by two things, firstly the resilience and good humour of those who find themselves homeless and secondly how much they enjoy volunteering. So this Christmas when you make your new year’s resolutions why not get in touch with Michelle at AHAG ( and book some time to volunteer with a great bunch of staff, volunteers and clients. Festive greetings to you all!


Solar Clear is your local, professional cleaning service specialising in: • Gutters • Conservatories • Solar Panels (maximise energy generation) Our trained and experienced teams utilise the very latest high-technology cleaning equipment. For a quote please call the number below or use our easy online enquiry form at:

Tel: 01296 583516 or 07722 479796


Floors l Doors l Worktops l Furniture Top quality timber products at great prices! A family business with over 20 years industry experience

T: 01844 217075 E:

18 Butter Market, Thame, Oxon, OX9 3EP Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


l Column ‘In the Garden’ with

Naomi MacKay

S’no joke for wildlife W

e may all be wishing for snow over Christmas and New year (well my 10-year-old is anyway) but winter forecasts of freezing temperatures, ice-hard ground and snow covered landscapes are not such good news for wildlife.

Blue Tit on feeder

Great Tit

Lotus Fencing solutions

Experts in all aspects of fencing Traditional and alternative materials l Landscaping and garden services such as hedgecutting also undertaken l Professional service l Small, friendly Buckinghamshire firm l Free consultation and quotation l Fully insured l l

Your garden can become a haven for birds and small animals though. The lovely folk at Birds & Bees have come up with some great ideas for looking after garden wildlife, with plans for this winter and for planning ahead to next… Five ways to look after the wildlife that looks after you and your garden 1. Give winter homes to pesteating hedgehogs and frogs Introduce the perfect safe and dry shelters such as Hogitats and Frogilos, for hedgehogs and amphibians including frogs and toads as they hibernate over winter. They will awake in spring hungry, and ready to feed on planteating slugs. 2. Help colourful birds survive the cold Bring your winter garden to life with their characters and charming colours. Fat balls, seeds and suet are all high-calorie and see the birds through the bitter coldness of winter.

SAME DAY SKIP HIRE & GRAB SERVICE Providing skips in your area since 1997

We are an independent business dedicated to providing quality work at the most competitive prices. We provide tailor-made solutions for your fencing and gardening needs, whether it’s a quick repair, a substantial boundary fence installation, or a landscaping project.

Lotus Fencing Solutions

Contact Wes on Tel: 01296 488358 Mobile: 07850 419110 Email: 52

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

We send zero waste to landfill Call: 01296 651678 Licensed by The Environment Agency EPR/BB3634RA Licensed Waste Carrier CB/YE5439CV

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

3. Save the robin Help the survival of the UK’s favourite bird, the robin. Robins can lose up to 10% in body weight in one cold night so it’s vital that they clock up the calories. Lay on fat-balls and mealworms for an energy-rich diet. 4. Plant trees for extra birdfood Plant a tree in your garden, which produces beautiful flowers in spring and fruit in autumn and winter. The flowers attract pretty

pollinators like butterflies and the fruits will provide food for birds in the colder months. Sorbus and malus (crab apple) trees are good choices. 5. Give ground-feeding birds and perching birds the food they need Feed birds at ground-level as well as tree level. Birds such as thrushes, robins and blackbirds like to feed from ground-feeders, whereas tits, tree sparrows and nuthatches like to feed higher up. Continued on page 54

Telephone: 01844 208401 Mobile: 07732 329118 Email: Website:

The professional design and build service for residential and commercial property From fence panels and back door steps, to complete garden redesigns with paving, turfing, excavations, retaining walls and planting, driveways, patios, decking, water features, ponds...

Vacancies for hard landscaper and skilled labourers - contact Rodney on: 07732 329118 Robin on ground feeder

Teng Tools 127 Pie

Le Chameau Ceres Jersey Handmade Boots £110

Seasonal Specials

ce Tool Kit £144

l tro 5 Pe 9 6 £1 G5 err LB w IH Blo ST eaf L

(Age 2 1/2+) John Deere Children’s Pedal Tractor & Trailer £60

Rycote Lane Farm, Milton Common, Thame, Oxfordshire, OX9 2NZ

Tel: 01844 278843

/FarolLtd @FarolLtd +FarolLtd Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

l Column ‘In the Garden’ with

Cater for all these lovely garden birds with feeders to suit. Birds & Bees have everything you need to look after your garden wildlife this winter. Request an Autumn / Winter catalogue to see the full range at: www.

garden look like a mini Eden Project, is 100% weatherproof and retains heat, making it the perfect cosy winter outside entertaining space. How about putting a hot tub in it, or using it for star gazing the clear wintry skies. At £649, maybe there’s time to put it on your Christmas list – or just treat youself at:

Your very own igloo! From wildlife homes to garden homes for you! I just had to include this fab Garden ‘Igloo’. This portable, multi-purpose PVC geodesic dome, which makes your

Light the fire and enjoy a good read Now is a fantastic time of year to spend cosied up by the fire with your laptop or tablet or a pile of catalogues, choosing the plants you

Continued from page 53

Naomi MacKay

Calibrachoa Can Can Strawberry Punch 03

Petunia Amore Queen of Hearts 02

want to grow next spring. If you’re going to do your shopping online you can order now ready for spring delivery – or simply make your shopping list to take to the garden centre with you in the new year. For example, Ball Colegrave has new patio plants including the rich bicolour flowers of Calibrachoa Punch, the neat habit of the French Lavender Bandera Pink and the latest colour break in Petunia breeding – Amore™ Queen Of Hearts. l Naomi MacKay is a locally-based

freelance writer and editor who specialises in gardens. She also helps small businesses get their message to potential clients using

Indigo Cherry Drops


Country Living Ladies and Gents fashionable outdoor clothing and footwear Serving customers snce 1830

Thame Road Haddenham Bucks HP17 8BY Tel 01844 292000 OPEN: Mon to Thurs 8.00am - 5.00pm Fri 8.00am - 6.00pm Sat 8.00am - 5.00pm Ample FREE customer parking Other branches at: Buckingham, Chesham, Daventry, Great Dunmow and Leighton Buzzard

Professional work carried out by fully insured NPTC Qualified people who care 54

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

websites, blogs, social media and more traditional printed products. Email:

Designed for

• Tree Felling • Pruning • Pollarding • Crown Reductions • Re-Shaping • Fruit Trees • Stump Removal • Hedge Cutting • Firewood Logs • Free Quotations and advice

Office: 01296 738184 Mobile: 07961 425378

Lavender Bandera Pink 01


Work and Safety wear speciaists


Column: Lucy Ellis ‘Animal Magic’

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Feed feathered friends


pare a thought for our wild birds during the cold snap and set up a bird feeder in your garden to provide them with much-needed food – not to mention some great entertainment for you! Natural food supplies, such as insects, are dead or dormant and many other sources are scarce during the winter months, so birds seriously benefit from additional food stores. When the weather takes a turn for the worse, they alter their eating habits to include fatty, calorific goodies in a bid to build up their fat reserves and keep out the cold.

How to feed Ideally hanging feeders should be positioned on a sheltered easterly or southeasterly facing wall near a row of trees, but if you can’t match all these requirements it is best to opt for somewhere secluded near a perching spot, i.e. a bush or tree, so that the birds can scour for prey before diving in to feast. Ground feeders encourage

Garden birds may struggle to find food if cold weather sets in sparrows, thrushes and dunnocks, but be sure to site them away from cover for prey, such as cats, change the location every so often and remove uneaten food each night to avoid attracting vermin. Unique Pets stocks ready-made birdseed mixes, or you can make your own selection with added suet, mealworm and fruit. Clean your bird feeders out weekly and avoid leaving out a surplus of food which will attract unwanted visitors. What to feed Offer a variety of high fat and high calorie foods to entice a wide range of birds: - Black sunflower seeds are popular as they have thinner shells

and higher oil content than the normal variety, making them an easily accessible high energy food. However, the downside of this favourite of greenfinches and tits is the pile of husks left below the feeder, and so sunflower hearts offer birds direct access to the food without the mess. - Suet is a pure fat substance which comes in many forms to provide an easy, high calorie food for winter insulation. We offer suet in the form of fat balls, cakes and logs, all of which fit in different styles of feeders, or you can buy suet pellets in bug or berry flavour to mix in with any other seed mixes. - Peanuts are another high calorie substance, packed with oils and proteins which appeal to many common garden birds such as jays and nuthatches. They don’t freeze and so are ideal for feeding during the colder months, either shelled or ground as granules. Unique Pets also stocks the popular Flutter Butter feeders which are an easy

Lucy Ellis

Animal Magic way to store a peanut butter mix particularly suitable for birds over the winter. - Also known as thistle seed, nyger is a calorific oily seed which helps birds store fat over the winter, and is particularly popular with finches and those with delicate bills due to its small size. As well as fresh food, make sure you offer a supply of clean water and replace on a daily basis to avoid any contamination or transmission of diseases. l Lucy Ellis is a writer and blogger who

with Jenna Tomlins runs Unique Pets, a local, independent pet shop offering individual advice for pets, two grooming salons, dog training and a pet photography studio.

106xx out of the dog house a5 1pp 2 25/10/2013 10:40 Page 1

New Aylesbury store now open! Aylesbury 01296 706403 Winslow 01296 715697 Chamberlain Road, Aylesbury / High Street, Winslow

Top quality food & accessories for all your pets, from dogs, cats and horses to rabbits, wild birds, small mammals, chickens, fish and reptiles. Expert advice, tailored feeding plans, puppy socialising, dog training classes, pet photo studio, professional dog grooming and pampering service...


01296 706403

Out of the Doghouse Dog Listening

Contact: Roselle 07989 947316 email: roselle@

Does your dog:

Do you to give your puppy or rescue dog • jump upwant • pull on the lead• bark excessively the best possible start in your home? • display nervous, obsessive or aggressive behaviour Does your dog: bicycles or livestock • have issues with food • chase joggers, • jump up • destroy carpets or furniture when left alone? • pull on the lead

Dog Listening is a simple non-confrontational method, for all bark excessively dogs,• through which you can address undesirable behaviours • display nervous, obsessive or aggressive and build a rewarding relationship with your dog. behaviour • chase joggers, bicycles or livestock • destroy carpets or furniture when left alone • have issues with food? Dog Listening uses a simple non-confrontational method, suitable for all dogs, regardless of size, age or breed, through which you can address all undesirable behaviours and build a rewarding relationship with your dog. Contact: Roselle 07989 947316 or or visit

T: 07745 779989 E:

Dog grooming in Haddenham Call 01296 706403 or pop into shop to book your grooming appointment

T: 07745 779989 E:

T: 07745 779989 E:

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17



Music Column:

Turn it up! with Paul Adams

Ho Ho Ho no!

Our music columnist is Paul Adams - musician and performer, who can be seen in venues across our area both solo and with A Little Bit Country. Contact Paul with local gigs and music news at: Add your gigs to our website what’s on diary for free at:

Live Music December 30th Nevermind (Rock Covers, 3 piece) The Goat, Berkhamsted 31st The Rockettes (50s / 60s Pop) at George & Dragon, Northchurch 31st The Power Of Soul (Soul Covers) The Full Moon, Little Kingshill 31st A Little Bit Country Aylesbury Rugby Football Club 31st The Informers (Punky Pop) Wheatsheaf, Leighton Buzzard January 7th Tightrope (Blues Rock, 4 piece) Shoot Pool Live, Aylesbury 8th Bowie Experience, Waterside Theatre, Aylesbury

Bowie Experience - a spectacular concert featuring the hits of David Bowie. A journey of Sound and Vision through Bowie’s Golden Years with all the hits from Aladdin Sane to Ziggy - this show is a must-see for Bowie fans and Absolute Beginners. www. 14th Nicky B (Various, Solo Artist) Westcott Sports & Social Club 20th Rebecca Downes (Original Blues) Limelight Theatre, Aylesbury 21st Lou’s Sextet The Bell, Chartridge 27th Continuum Covers Band Victoria Club, Aylesbury 28th Alleycats (Rock & Roll, 6 piece) British Legion, Heath and Reach 2nd Phil Cooper Dukes Wine bar, Princes Risborough 6th Big Band Swing, George & Dragon, Risborough 10th The Ridouts (Jazz) Limelight Theatre, Aylesbury


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


t’s that time of year again folks when we all spend far too much on presents that nobody wants and eat far too much of food that nobody really needs. Bring it on I say! We’ll soon be needing a break from the stresses and strains that the holiday season brings and there is no better way to relax and blow off some steam, than by supporting your local musician! So, eat, drink, be merry and rock out to some of the great acts playing locally over the new year period. On a personal note A Little Bit Country have had a terrific year and are working hard in the studio on our debut album Whisky and Wine which we aim to release before Christmas. We are nearly there! We had an amazing trip to visit and even play in Music City (Nashville, Tennessee) and are planning a return in the summer. Our newest single Shot At Loving You was released on October 23rd

A Little Bit Country and is still going strong on Spotify with streams reaching 25,000! We are very excited about that and very thankful to all who have supported by attending our gigs, listening to our songs and purchasing the single. We have more exciting things coming up so will update you here as and when they happen. In the meantime, keep up to date at:

Tune in to AMPed! S ome of you may already know that we are lucky enough to be sitting on a hotbed of musical heritage! From bands like the world famous Marillion to John Otway and Wild Willy Barrett, and from 80s heartthrob Howard Jones to local lady Nadine Samuels (member of chart topping group M.O), we really do have a wealth of talent. Sadly though it’s sometimes overlooked - so how can we find out more about our local heroes? Enter Mark Scobey! Mark is a well known local musician and host of several local Open Mic Nights. He has just turned his hand to broadcasting with a brand new podcast AMPed! The Aylesbury Musician Podcast is a monthly interview podcast dedicated to the rich variety of local musical talent that exists in Aylesbury and its surrounding areas. The idea came to Mark whilst hosting his Open Mic Nights. With only limited time to chat to the performers, Mark realised that he wanted to know more about them and he was sure other music lovers would like the chance too. His first

guest is Seb James - a talented young musician and teacher and more notably a founding member of local band Callow Saints. Following on from Seb will be other local talent including trumpet player Lee Buckingham. You may even hear from a certain local country duo too! Tune in at: AMPedPod or www.markscobeymusic. com/podcast


Bright lights, big rigs, adoring fans - the stuff reserved only for the arenas and big stadium rock bands right? Wrong! Where could we see something like this in Aylesbury though? Well actually - Shoot Live! Shoot Live (previously known as Shoot Pool) hosts many a big band, including the fabulous U2 tribute act U2Baby. U2Baby is dedicated to recreating the authentic sound of Ireland’s number one non-alcoholic export. They dress like the boys, play like the boys and even sound like the boys due to their masterful musicianship and with the help of their trusty technological sidekick U2D2. U2Baby are bona fide island hopping rock stars, playing to crowds across Europe and soon, across the world! They recently played for U2’s 40th anniversary in the real band’s home of Dublin. Perhaps these boys are even better than the real thing? Find out for yourself on 28th January 2017. For tickets contact Shoot Live on: 01296 489712.

Music News

• Love it or hate it the David Bowie statue Kickstarter campaign has reached its target and has been given the green light. For more on this visit: • Local originals rock band Zarak are on the lookout for a new lead guitarist. If you think that you have what it takes to do the job please send a private message to Ray Chappell at: zarakrocks • New playlist launched featuring artists from the local area:


Column: Showtime! with Shaun Nolan

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

La Crème de la Crème


nce Christmas is over Theatreland is going to be quiet for a while, as the shows that opened over the Winter season try and find their feet. The same has to be said about a post-pantomime Vale as only a handful of shows will be popping up, such as Gaslight at the Aylesbury Waterside Theatre (Monday 16th – Saturday 21st) and The Twits in the week that follows. In the West End, not very much will be opening its doors either. A revival of the cult classic ‘80s musical Promises Promises – featuring the music of Burt Bacharach – will open at the Southwark Playhouse on January 13th, while an acclaimed revival of the Tennessee Williams play The Glass Menagerie will open at the Duke of York’s Theatre for a limited season from January 26th. The biggest hit to hit London though will be Gary Barlow’s The Girls: a musical inspired by the story of Calendar Girls. The show’s picked up a lot of momentum in out of town tryouts, so I can’t wait to

Shaun Nolan Showtime!

Cast of The Girls with Gary Barlow

see how it translates onto a West End stage. If you’re at a loose end for what to see though, why not try something that’s been running for a while? I first saw Beautiful: The Carole King Musical a few years ago when it first opened and I fell in love with the piece. I’ve always been a massive fan of Carole King’s musical catalogue so to hear all the pieces in the context of her life story was fascinating. It’s rare for me to say that a jukebox musical is fantastic, but this one most certainly is and is well worth

your time. If you want something more on the funny side though then The Book of Mormon is definitely the show for you. From the creative team behind South Park, TBOM is a show about two unlikely friends being paired together for their Mormon mission to Uganda. It’s crude, tongue in cheek and hilarious so if you’re looking for a sidesplittingly funny night out then this is the one. We recently did a production of The Phantom of the Opera at my school - it’s been one of my

favourite musicals for most of my life - yet I never get bored with the music. This show is a classic and even if you’ve seen it countless times before, like myself, it’s always worthy of a re-visit. No matter which show you see this January, support theatre in whatever way you can, especially in such an awkward in-between period like the New Year. And if you do head to the theatre this month, keep an eye out for me! l Shaun Nolan is a London theatre blogger who writes for a variety of publications including LondonTheatreDirect. Find him at @shaunycat on Twitter and if you want your show mentioned in this column, tweet him & let him know!



yo u

s l l e B h g i Sle

g n i R

ti ve ca ro ls & fes nd lel ig ht mu si c by ca serv ed with min ce pies and mul led win e

ticket s :

4:30 PM* family matinee 7:30 PM evening concert ST MARY’S CHURCH, THAME

(Under 16s FREE for both performances)

Singing, dancing and acting classes for 4 - 18 year olds, where students learn to embrace life with creativity and courage Find out more today:

SAT 17 DEC 2016

Matinee: £10 Concessions £8 Evening: £12 ** Concessions £10

Unlock your child’s potential with Stagecoach Performing Arts

Stagecoach Performing Arts Schools are operated under franchise and are independently owned by their Principals. Stagecoach is a registered trademark of Stagecoach Theatre Arts Ltd.


sored Spon by

AYLESBURY 01525 790 795 THAME 01865 763767

On the door or from The Book House, Thame High St

*Refreshments from 4pm ** £12 ticket entitles holder to attend both performances ™ Charity No. 1091186

Creative Courage For Life


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17



Column: Sandra Smith ‘Our Creative Vale’

Natural reflections F

rom propeller curves to sea battered hulls the detail, angle and light accentuated in Amanda Curbishley’s abstract paintings neither distract nor detract from the object of which they are part but rather elevate a possibly unnoticed feature into a focus of artistic value. Her style gives me a new and welcome view of abstraction. Indeed, I sense our opinions on the genre are satisfyingly compatible. “I struggle a little with pure abstract work which often goes straight over my head. I’m always looking for what it is. I’m a bit of a realist.” This Aylesbury artist is inspired by ‘interesting shapes’. Yet although she is now a prolific painter, her passion for marine art began only a few years ago. “Around 2002 I started going to art classes at the Queens Park Centre in Aylesbury. I was atrocious to start with! A lot

Amanda Curbishley of people think watercolour is easy but it’s one of the hardest mediums. I soon got fed up and switched to acrylics; I like their versatility, you can paint over mistakes. Every time you try something new you learn. I kept trying different things and one day I did boats and thought, Oh, I can do these!” Unwilling to restrict herself, however, Amanda went on to

illustrate trees and flowing landscapes which, along with colourful, mixed media still life form a balanced portfolio. In a dedicated garden room works in progress fill every space. Here Amanda favours pumice gel for adding texture whilst collages are enhanced with wallpaper, newspaper and magazine clippings. “At first I cut out shapes like you would at school but now I’m freer. I use Pritt Stick, PVA or an acrylic medium to stick and seal the paper.” Being a member of Bucks Art Society provides a valuable support network plus exhibition opportunities. She teaches at QPC, appreciating that helping others analyse their paintings improves her own objectivity. Her work has been shown at Obsidian Art and we’re discussing the importance of networking before - almost apologetically - other achievements are revealed. “One of my abstracts was

Creative Vale

Sandra Smith accepted this year by the Royal Society of Marine Artists for their on line exhibition and I’ve sold a couple of life drawings to a person on Fifth Avenue, New York.” Amanda’s excitement at enthusing about art is as laudable as her success. More importantly, her creativity is balanced by a refreshingly grounded attitude to both her work and achievements. l Find out more about Sandra

Smith’s work as a freelance writer by following her on Twitter: @TheCurrentMrsS or visiting her website:

Book your wedding now and quote ‘Vale Life’ Book your wedding now and quote ‘Vale Life’ Book your wedding now and quote ‘Vale Life’ receive 20% discount from your wedding. receive 20% discount fromquote your ‘Vale wedding. receive discount from your wedding. Book your 20% wedding now and Life’ Tel: 01296 722100 Tel: 01296 722100 722100 receive 20%Tel: discount from your wedding. 01296

to to to to

Email: Email: Email: Tel: 01296 722100 Email: Valid for any weddings taking place between now and 30th April 2017. Valid for anyand weddings taking place between now and 30th April 2017. Subject to availability, terms conditions apply , not to be used in conjunction with any other offers. Valid for any weddings taking place between now and 30th April 2017. 58

Subject to availability, terms and conditions apply , not to be used in conjunction with any other offers. Subject to availability, terms and conditions apply , not to be used in conjunction with any other offers. Valid for any weddings taking place between now and 30th April 2017. Subject to availability, terms and conditions apply , not to be used in conjunction with any other offers.

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

l Column: Peter

Purvis ‘Not that Peter Purvis’

Not That Peter Purvis!


ome forty years since narrowly missing joining The Bucks Herald, I find myself taking up a writing post for this august organ. Back in 1973, I was offered an apprenticeship by the editor of the Herald, however, my sixth form teachers at The Grange School persuaded me to instead take up the offer of a place at The London School of Economics to study Social Anthropology. Why Social Anthropology, I now have absolutely no idea! Suffice it to say, I am not now a Social Anthropologist studying less developed peoples (unless of course you count the occasional trip to Hemel Hempstead). So off to LSE I went at 18 and the rest, as they say, is history. Or not, in my case, because at the end of four years what did I have to show for it? Well, a life-long taste (or, as my wife likes to call it, addiction) for real ale (my mates Lee and Nigel and I visited nearly every real ale pub in London between 1973 and 1977 – no mean

feat I can tell you). Plus I suffered a 2.2 honours degree and a nervous breakdown, spending the long hot summer of 1976 thinking I was Jesus. And following that? Well, twenty six very long years as a civil servant in the Min of Ag in London working on foot and mouth disease, BSE and doing a quinquennial Review of the Milk Development Council. Oh, the glittering prizes... I got a severance package from the civil service in 2006 or, as I like to think of it - early release. I can’t really blame my teachers at The Grange for the course my ‘career’ took. Back in the early 1970s, secondary modern schools sent very few pupils on to University. Maybe I could have become the next Keith Waterhouse or John Pilger, and then again maybe I would have spent the rest of my days writing up the goings on of the Little Stokely Mothers Union AGM and the like. At least in the Min of Ag I got to meet Edwina Currie. I will hold on to that. Oh, and leaving the pyres of dead cows and poisoned eggs of

MAFF (latterly Defra) behind me, has enabled me to do other things, such as train to be a counsellor, act as policy advisor (part-time) to Queen’s Counsel Appointments, walk my dog, make cider, ruminate on how much better Aylesbury was in the good old days and do a bit of stand-up comedy on the UK circuit avoiding Hemel Hempstead if I can. And now I am also to write these little articles for Vale Magazine. And these days I do actually have things to write about - which I am not sure was the case for 18 year old wet-behind-the-ears me. So, belatedly, thank you Grange School. And finally… if you were wondering about the title of these little pieces (Not That Peter Purvis) then you’re probably under 50. People used to say that to me “you’re not THAT Peter Purvis are you?” the little jesters. A much more famous chap of the same name (well, nearly the same name – Peter Purves actually) was a presenter on the BBC children’s television series Blue Peter in the 1960s and 1970s. I will never

Peter Purvis forget the disappointment on the faces of the nursing staff at Stoke Mandeville hospital a few years back when I was admitted with (what turned out to be a fake) heart attack. They’d been expecting THE Peter Purvis. Funnily enough Kriss Akabusi’s lovely old dad was in the next bed, showing the nurses his old spear wounds, so that helped ease their disappointment - a sort of practical anthropology lesson if you like… l You can see Peter in his guise as stand-up comedian Fred Ferenczi on Saturday 4th February, 2017 at the Limelight Theatre Aylesbury, where he is supporting his friend and fellow-comedian President Obonjo. Tickets are available from:

Win tickets to new Glee Club


xfordshire’s comedy club, The Glee, has moved to a new location. With the closure of their Hythe Bridge Street home in October (due to redevelopment), the club will be re-opening at The Bullingdon, Cowley Road, on Saturday 14th January, 2017. The Glee’s Director, Mark Tughan, said: “We’re very much looking forward to getting settled into our new home at The Bullingdon after six years on the other side of the city. The Bullingdon’s Paul Williams said: “Adding regular Saturday and special comedy nights to our established line-up of music shows is very exciting, and strengthens our reputation as one of the city’s best entertainment venues.” Promising a top-notch lineup of established and rising comedy talent every Saturday , The Glee’s opening night (14th

Ellie Taylor, Tom Allen and Marlon Davis January) features appearances from Tom Allen, fresh from his own headline tour and supporting Sarah Millican, plus the awardwinning Marlon Davis and charismatic Ellie Taylor. Other acts lined up for the coming weeks include the hotly tipped Jamali Maddix and Paul Tonkinson (21st Jan, 2017); Rhy James, from ITV2’s topical @Elevenish, and Aussie Damian Clark (28th Jan, 2017); and

Romesh Ranganathan touring partner Suzi Ruffell with the dark and honest Michael Fabbri (4th Feb, 2017). BBC Radio 4 Extra’s Newsjack host Nish Kumar also brings his acclaimed new solo show, Actions Speak Louder Than Words Unless You Shout The Words Really Loud, to The Glee on 2nd Feb, 2017. The Glee will be hosting the Best In Live Stand-Up, featuring

four top comedy acts every Saturday from Saturday 14th Jan, 2017 and if you’d like to be in with a chance of winning a pair of tickets to a show of your choice (subject to availability), email your name, address and telephone number, along with the answer to the following question, to: Which recent prime minister was a member of the Bullingdon Club? Winner to be drawn at random from correct entries and notified by email by Jan 20th, 2017. For tickets for all shows, plus more information on acts call: 0871 872 0400. l The Glee, c/o The Bullingdon,

162 Cowley Road, Oxford, Oxfordshire, OX4 1UE Tickets: 0871 872 0400 Twitter @TheGleeClub #oxford Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

A Twitastic New Year of curiosities, exciting new shows, dance, drama, laughter and tears offers something for all tastes and ages at Aylesbury Waterside Theatre come 2017, just read on...

Tue 7th to Sat 11th March


f Aylesbury Waterside Theatre’s entertainment line-up is anything to go by, 2017 is set to be a show-packed year of must-see live performances. January boasts a gripping thriller, a Roald Dahl classic, Superslam Wrestling (Friday, January 6th), tribute shows paying homage to some of the industry’s finest, and even a spot of ‘Strictly’ with the nation’s favourite ballroom couple, Anton Du Beke and Erin Boag (Sunday, January 29th).

Mon 24th to Sat 29th April


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Mon 27th March to Sat 1st April Gaslight starring Kara Tointon, Keith Allen and Rupert Young promises a seatgripping evening of thrilling British theatre (Monday 16th to Saturday 21st January), before the disgustingly good and repulsively funny classic, The Twits muddles onto the stage for some rib-tickling Roald style fun for youngsters of all ages (Tuesday 24th to Saturday 28th January). And if music be the food of love, your heart should be pounding as you feast your

eyes on the Waterside’s musical line-up! From swinging 60s extravaganza, the ever-popular Dreamboats and Petticoats (Monday 20th to Saturday 25th February, to 50s style rock, pop’n’roll with Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story (Tuesday 7th to Saturday 11th March) which tells of the young performer’s meteoric rise to fame before his legendary final performance in Clear Lake, Iowa, to Broadway’s awardwinning Thoroughly Modern Millie starring Strictly’s Joanne Clifton (Monday 27th March to Saturday 1st April), and the heartwrenching Ghost (Tuesday 18th to Saturday 22nd April). With two must-see National Theatre productions in the mix - the magical and moving The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Tuesday 7th to Saturday 11th February) followed by the critically-acclaimed, innovative re-imagining of Charlotte Brontë’s masterpiece Jane Eyre (Monday 24th to Saturday 29th April), theatre will be the word on everyone’s lips next Spring. Grannies, veggies and three bears are on offer for young theatre fans. There’s David Walliams’ Gangsta Granny (Wednesday 17th to Saturday 21st May). The show, from the producers of Horrible Histories, tells the story of how all is not as it seems when granny swaps cabbage soup, cabbage pie and

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Anton and Erin - Sunday, January 29th

Tue 7th to Sat 11th February

cabbage cake for a secret adventure on Friday nights, and tiddlers will love Mr Bloom aka Ben Faulks on Saturday 4th March, while Northern Ballet return with a special childfriendly adaptation of Goldilocks and the Three Bears (Saturday 10th June), a performance to provide the perfect introduction to live ballet, music and theatre. There’s also a fabulous selection of one night shows ranging from dance spectaculars with Strictly star Brendan Cole (Friday 17th March), spiritual shenanigans with Psychic Sally (Thursday 6th April), ‘Evenings with’ Pam Ayres (Sunday 9th April), and for sports fans Aggers and Tuffers (Wednesday 1st

Rupert Young, Kara Tointon and Keith Allen star in Gaslight (Mon 16th to Sat 21st Jan)

February), and laugh fests with funny men Lee Nelson (Sunday 26th March), Omid Djalili (Thursday 13th April) and Jimmy Carr (Tuesday 9th May). What are you waiting for?! Book now by visiting Aylesbury Waterside Theatre Box Office, call: 0844 871 7607 (booking fee plus calls 7p per min plus your phone company’s access charge) or visit: (bkg fee). l Aylesbury Waterside Theatre, Exchange Street, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP20 1UG Telephone Booking: 0844 871 7607 Website:

Coming up at The Waterside Your at-a-glance guide to what’s on... Aladdin

Fri 9th to Sat 31st Dec

Superslam Wrestling

Fri 6th Jan

Rumours of Fleetwood Mac Bowie Experience

Sat 7th Jan

Comedy Club ( Second Space) Gaslight

Fri 20th Jan

The Twits

Tue 24th to Sat 28th Jan

Anton and Erin

Sun 29th Jan

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

Tue 7th to Sat 11th Feb

Stand By Me

Sun 12th Feb

Dreamboats & Petticoats

Mon 20th to Sat 25th Feb

Sun 8th Jan

Mon 16th to Sat 21st Jan

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17



Column: Nick Coffer ‘In the kitchen’

Slow-cooked Pork Shoulder


ne of the ‘trends’ I am noticing with restaurants is towards really small sites opening up. These places, which can take a maximum of 20 people, are more intimate for customers and less unwieldy for owners and chefs to run. They require less staff and often feel more like eating in someone’s front room, rather than in a restaurant. I think one of the forerunners of this kind of restaurant was ‘Marianne’ in London, which was opened by Masterchef The Professionals runner-up Marianne Lumb three years ago. Within my patch, Crockers in Potten End, near Berkhamsted, recently opened its doors. Run by a lovely chef called Luke Garnsworthy, he only has 10 seats around his fine-dining chef’s table. But Luke also loves the kind of simple recipes he makes on my Weekend Kitchen programme, like this foolproof slow-cooker pork shoulder dish. Meltingly tender, full of flavour and so easy to make, this is great home cooking. If you don’t

Chocolate Truffled Meringues

extra to garnish One small butternut squash 250ml cider Chicken stock Method: Set the slow cooker to low. Chop all the vegetables into big chunks and fry them in batches in a pan on a medium to high heat until they are nicely coloured. Add them to the slow cooker as you go.

have a slow cooker, just cook this gently on the hob for 2-3 hours, topping up the liquid as you go. Ingredients (to serve 4) 4 good-sized pork shoulder steaks 4 carrots 2 parsnips 1 courgette 200g pearl barley 2 tbsp mixed fresh herbs (tarragon works especially well here), plus

Season the pork with salt and fry it until brown on both sides. Pop this into the slow cooker on top of the vegetables. Drop in the pearl barley and herbs and mix well it all well. Add the cider to the pot and cover everything with chicken stock. You don’t want too much liquid. It’s important that it just

In the kitchen Nick Coffer

covers the contents. Put the lid on and relax for 4-5 hours (or more) until the pork is tender. Have a little look halfway through, just to check if more liquid is required. Add in a final small handful of chopped herbs right at the end. With the addition of the pearl barley, this really is a super one-pot family supper. l Hear wonderful recipes on Nick Coffer’s Weekend Kitchen every Sunday morning on BBC Three Counties radio at 11am. You can also join Nick weekday afternoons at midday for music plus local guests with great stories.

Farm - Butchers - PuB OPening times Tuesday - Thursday 12 to 11pm Friday - Saturday 12 to 12am Sunday - 12 to 10pm 27 Church St, Brill, Bucks, HP18 9RT 01844 238339 -


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Risborough’s Radhuni Restaurant enjoys an historic setting but the Fine Indian Dining destination is not stuck in the past. The team are constantly updating and improving for their customers...


t the Radhuni Indian Restaurant in Princes Risborough Akthoraz Miah and his team adapt, innovate and update traditional recipes to give diners an authentic Indian experience with modern appeal. Miah opened his first Radhuni at Flackwell Heath in 2004. It has an enviable reputation for excellent cuisine and was recently voted Best Indian Restaurant in the Euro-Asia Curry Awards 2016. His Princes Risborough branch opened at the Old Library on Church Street, in 2009. The Grade II listed building is a stunning 16th century wealden house, with black and white timbering to the left of a modern entrance. Inside it is a pleasing mix of contemporary style and old world charm. There’s a comfortable reception area with a funky modern bar, while the main restaurant is an impressive Elizabethan banqueting hall, where oak beams have been complemented by huge brass chandeliers, metal pendant shades and eastern wall plaques, which add an exotic edge. “We are always updating and improving,” says Miah. “I like to keep things fresh and interesting for our customers. We introduce new dishes to the menu every few months and

we constantly adjust the layout and decor. “We use the latest technology to ensure service is fast and efficient and have a wifi ordering system, so waiters input your order on a tablet, which transmits to the till and sends a printout to the kitchen. You can also book your table and place your order for eating in, or to take away, on our website:” The restaurant can seat up to 100 diners and boasts a large staff of six chefs and two assistants in the kitchens and some seven

Miah at The Radhuni waiters. It’s a spacious place with a friendly, welcoming atmosphere. The Radhuni menu has the traditional Indian and Bangladeshi dishes that many diners love, plus a variety of house specialities and new additions - dishes gathered from all over South East Asia. “All the food here is fresh,” says Miah. “We do the preparation in the afternoon and cook to order in the evening. We have well equipped modern kitchens and a special tandoori oven that cooks at a very high temperature.” New dishes are helpfully marked on the menu and include: Garlic Rice; Chilli Naan; Kabli Kebab - Minced Lamb blended with garlic and ginger, green chillis and coriander; Murgh Malai Tikka - Chicken marinated in soft cheese, coriander, green chillis and cream then grilled; and Zamdani - Chicken or Lamb cooked with onions, green peppers, green chillis, tomatoes and chef ’s special spicy hot sauce. Radhuni also has some exciting new additions to the drinks menu - new awardwinning wines from specialist importers Hallgarten Druitt and a rather nice gluten free bottled beer - Goa Premium Beer (4.8ABV) which has a crisp, refreshing flavour, ideal with curry. New seating in the form of a smart circular banquette has appeared in the restaurant, which can seat up to 12 round a single table and offers an alternative dining option for small parties. “We put on occasional entertainment, a jazz night or an Elvis night,” says Miah. “We

have a Tina Turner tribute on New Year’s Eve (£54.95, 3 course meal, from 9pm with glass of bubbly at midnight. Early family session from 5.30pm).” The restaurant is open seven days a week, lunchtimes (12-2pm) and for dinner (6-11pm), including bank holidays (Closed Christmas Day) and will deliver takeaways for free within five miles on orders over £15. They also do gift vouchers and have discounts and benefits for Radhuni Spice Club members. l Radhuni, The Old Library, Church Street, Princes Risborough, BUCKS, HP27 9AA Tel: 01844 273741 / 273412 / 690446 Web: Facebook: \RadhuniPR Twitter: @RadhuniPR

WIN a Valentine’s Night Meal for two!


adhuni Restaurant is a fabulous place to eat any night of the year but on Valentine’s Day they arrange a special set menu and glass of bubbly for romantic couples looking to celebrate this auspicious occasion. If you would like to be in with a chance of winning a Valentine’s Day meal for two at Radhuni on February 14th, 2017, email your name, address and telephone number, along with the answer to the following question, to: When did Radhuni open in Princes Risborough? Winner to be drawn at random from correct entries and notified by email by Jan 20th, 2017. l Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Column: ‘Field to fork’ with Steve Bulmer

Chef is back in Bucks


e Manoir and Brook Hall chef Stephen Bulmer has recently returned to Bucks, to cook and teach at The Green Dragon Rare Breeds Farm & Eco Centre and has taken on the added responsibility of giving Vale Life readers a regular glimpse of life in the farm kitchens... Eating well means living well. Food connects to the soul, and cooking what’s fresh and in season is something I believe everybody should feel confident to do. To me, there’s nothing more important than teaching people where great food comes from, and how to cook it. I’ve worked with many celebrated chefs in Michelin restaurants and I loved my time working with Raymond Blanc at Le Manoir aux Quat’Saisons. But now my greatest satisfaction comes from cooking wonderful, sustainable produce and passing on my skills to local folk who want to

Steve at The Green Dragon Farm serving up a warming winter tagine from scooped out pumpkin skins learn and improve what they can do in the kitchen. That’s why I’m so delighted to be returning to Buckinghamshire as head chef at the Green Dragon Eco Centre. I love this area - I started

my first cookery school in Winslow. My family live around here and I already feel welcomed back as part of this wonderful community. The Green Dragon is wellknown locally as a Rare Breeds Farm, Children’s Play, Education and Events Centre. What I think people don’t know is their ethos of sustainability, wellbeing and farm-to-fork practices that runs through everything they do. It’s the foundation of all that they grow and produce - their home-reared beef, lamb and pork, their walled-garden vegetables and their orchard fruits and it’s really exciting me. I’m looking forward to bringing this all together in the food served in the restaurant, café and my new cookery school. I’m going to be demonstrating why and how cooking in harmony with the seasons is so delicious and healthy - without being complicated or intimidating. I’m also keen to introduce new plants, herbs and

Steve Bulmer

Field to fork

vegetables into the Farm, some heritage varieties that haven’t been grown in Buckinghamshire for years. Two priorities are putting bees back into the orchards and introducing the white-feathered, pink-billed Aylesbury ducks into our flock. I can’t wait to get started. l Stephen’s Cookery School

includes Restaurant Nights, Chef Tables and Demonstration Dining Events. For more information visit or call: 01296 670 444.

Coco Tamarind Fine Indian restaurant & takeaway at Askett, Princes Risborough

Join us in January for weekly special offers Coco Tamarind offers the finest modern and traditional Indian cuisine, in stylish, comfortable surroundings. Our relaxed ambience, attentive service and well stocked bar, will ensure your time with us is most enjoyable, whatever the occasion. l 10% discount on collected takeaways l Free home delivery for 5 mile radius (min order £15) l Become a Coco Tamarind Member and enjoy

discounts & special offers

Book now for Valentines. Special Menu available from Friday 10th - Saturday 18th February

Stay as part of our Romance Package for £74.50 per person Accommodation in Courtyard room Dinner to the value of £25.00pp (excluding drinks) Bottle Prosecco in the room on arrival Upgrade to a Deluxe room for £20.00 per night Bath treats & fluffy robes and slippers English breakfast

l Please call to reserve your table, we are busy all week!

Order your takeaway or reserve a table online at or call: 01844 343111 / 01844 346100 Coco Tamarind, Aylesbury Road, Askett, Princes Risborough, Buckinghamshire, HP27 9LY


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

London Rd, Aston Rowant, Watlington, Oxfordshire OX49 5SQ Book now on 01844 351496 or email

Win a meal for two at The Thatch


t’s feeling distinctly chilly outside right now. High time to hole up in your cosy neighbourhood local and get some warm food on your plate and something comforting in your glass. At Vale Life Magazine we like to do both at The Thatch in Thame, where there’s always a warm welcome and great, friendly service awaiting and at this time of year an all-new menu of hearty seasonal fare, plenty of good wine and some fantastic new cocktails with a winter twist that will see you through the colder months. The Thatch is a stylish gastrocome-traditional pub, tucked cosily inside a beautiful, 16th Century, half-timbered thatched cottage in the heart of historic Thame. It has recently won several awards for being a great place to eat and drink, and is particularly lovely at this time of year with its roaring fires and little nooks and crannies to hole up in and nurse a pint of well-kept local ale. Whether you pop in for Sunday lunch - voted one of the best in the country by readers of Observer Food Monthly magazine - or breakfast, which won Thame Hub’s award for the

in with a chance, simply email your name, address and telephone number, along with the answer to the following question to: What kind of roast duck is currently on the Thatch menu? Winner to be drawn at random and notified by email by January 20th. best in town - you’ll find plenty of the good stuff. Market fish of the day, top-notch 28 day dry-aged steaks from Aubrey Allen and seasonal dishes like Roast Breast of Merrifield Duck served with Potato Rösti, Spinach and Blackberry Jus; or Pot Roast Monkfish with Prawn, Mussel and Flageolet Bean Cassoulet are all the order of the day.

Get your weekend off to a proper start with a full English Thatch breakfast or spend a lazy Sunday with a great roast and a glass or two of red. The really good news is we’ve teamed up with The Thatch to offer Vale Life readers the chance to win a meal for two with a bottle of house wine at the pub. So if you’d like to be

l If you can’t wait to win, you can still enjoy a bite to eat at The Thatch any time. Pop in or go to: to book. The Thatch is at 29-30 Lower High Street, Thame, Oxon, OX9 2AA. Tel: 01844 214340. Email: Web: Open Sun - Thur 10am - midnight, Fri/Sat 10am - 12.30am

canaletto Authentic family-run Italian Restaurant and Public House Authentic family-run Italian Restaurant and Public House

To book, call: 01296 770251, visit us, or see our website: To book, call: 01296 770251, visit us, or see our website:

New menus recently launched! New menus recently 14.95 launched! Set Lunch (Tue - Sat): 2 Courses: / 3 Courses 18.95 Set Lunch (Tue Sat): 2 Courses: 14.95 // 33 Courses 18.95 Set Dinner (Tue Thu): 2 Courses 19.95 Courses 23.95when booking Not valid in conjunction with any other 2offer - mention ‘Vale Life Offer’ Set Dinner (Tue Thu): Courses 19.95 / 3 Courses Sun Lunch: 2 Courses 19.95 / 3 Courses 23.95 23.95 Sun Lunch: 2 Courses 19.95 / 3 Courses 23.95 Set Lunch (Tue-Sat): 2 Courses £12.95 / 3 Courses £15.95 Open Tue to Sun for lunch (12.00pm to 2.30pm) and/ Tue to Sat for dinner (6.30pm to 9.30pm) Sunday Lunch: 2 Courses £19.95 3 Courses £22.95

20% off Total Bill Tuesday - Friday throughout January!!! Open Tue to Sun for lunch (12.00pm to 2.30pm) and Tue to Sat for dinner (6.30pm to 9.30pm) Canaletto CanalettoKwood @CanalettoKwood /CanalettoKingswood Canaletto Canaletto, Bicester Road, Kingswood, Nr Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP18 0RB Canaletto, Bicester Road, Kingswood, Nr Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP18 0RB Canaletto, Kingswood, Nrand Aylesbury, 0RB Open Tue Bicester to Sun forRoad, lunch (12pm to 2.30pm) Tue to SatBuckinghamshire, for dinner (6.30pm toHP18 9.30pm)

@CanalettoKwood /CanalettoKingswood /CanalettoKingswood @CanalettoKwood Canaletto

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17



Column: Heather Jan Brunt ‘This farming life’

Say it with chocolate!


eing a bit of a chocoholic a recent invitation to visit Rumsey’s in Thame was something of a dream come true! It was chocolate overload big time, starting with a drink of the most delicious house hot chocolate - incredibly rich and delicious and unlike any hot chocolate drink I have ever indulged in before - followed by a chocolate making session with chocolatier Pawel Szymanski and a tasting session with Nigel Rumsey, to try his latest creations including delicious handmade chocolates, some pretty leaf shaped afterdinner mint chocolate and gorgeous mince pies with a hint of cranberry. The Thame shop opened eight years ago (the Rumseys also have a shop in Wendover) and here I was greeted by Nigel and Mary Rumsey and their daughter-in-law Kate. Nigel trained as a pastry chef in London where he learned about the importance of texture, appearance and taste and developed a flair for desserts and chocolate. He set up in business with his wife Mary, 25


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Nigel Rumsey

years ago, making chocolates from their home kitchen in Aylesbury, before opening the Wendover shop 14 years ago. “I really love my work,” says Nigel. “I feel lucky. I am passionate about it and love passing on what I know to other people. Some of our staff have been with us for 12 years. I have a team making the chocolate now. I trained Pawel and he now trains the others.” Mary explained that the taste of a chocolate is created from the blending of beans, often from different countries. Cocoa beans from different regions have

different flavours and aromas, and cocoa beans can become infused with the flavours of things growing near to them. So if a cocoa bean farm is located near to a fruit growing area, the chocolate will take on a fruity flavour. Rumsey’s chocolates are made with their own unique blend developed by Nigel. Called Or Noir it is created with beans from Madagascar, Cuba and Tanzania as both a dark and milk chocolate and Nigel spent many hours getting the combination just right. It is now the foundation for all Rumsey’s chocolates. A few months ago Nigel and Mary took a trip to Grenada to tour the cocoa plantations. Mary said: “It was interesting to visit the source, we picked a pod off the tree and one of the workers opened it so we could taste the cocoa beans.” Rumsey’s chocolateries not only sell a fabulous selection of chocolates but also provide drinks and light lunches (sandwiches, soups, salads, icecream and cakes). Additionally, they produce

This farming life Heather Jan Brunt

personalised products for Waddesdon Manor and several University of Oxford colleges as well as hosting workshops, chocolate courses and birthday parties in the Thame shop. This is a family business that has developed into a great success story, employing more than 35 staff across their two chocolateries. The shops are open every day from 8.30am-6pm and are currently displaying a mouthwatering selection of Christmas gift goodies chocolate Santas, Snowmen, Xmas trees and stocking fillers. There can’t be a tastier place for a spot of festive shopping! l Heather Jan Brunt is a journalist

and a farmer’s wife. You can follow her on Twitter @HJBjournalist

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

A young couple have eaten their way around the British Isles and are now making the very best products available at their new deli in Thame. Beware ye who enter though, it’s all rather delicious...


oe Bastin and Hannah Jones are the couple behind The Deli at Nō.5 Thame’s new homely, stylish and inviting Aladdin’s cave packed with the best of British food, drink, homeware and lifestyle products. It’s their first venture into retail but they have researched their product range carefully, travelling the UK over the last couple of years and trying pretty well everything they now stock. It’s amazing they are not both a lot rounder! Joe who is from Oxford and Hannah from Wallingford are both interested in food and how it is produced. They had found themselves working in uninspiring jobs and decided to set up their own business doing something they really loved. “I’ve always been keen on food and cooking,” says Joe. “I’ve worked in a few commercial kitchens, as has Hannah, but we’ve always spent our spare time rooting out farm shops, food shows, farmers markets and interesting delis. We wanted to work for ourselves and champion British produce - it seems crazy to be buying supermarket carrots shipped here from half way round the world, when we could be eating lovely homegrown produce!” The Deli at Nō.5 is not selling fruit and veg, but is curating a gorgeous range of specialist products from artisan producers - there’s amazing cheeses, such as Bingley Blue - a delicious Roquefort-esque cheese, Oxford College White with Truffles, Isis, Smoked Colston Bassett, and many more; tasty charcuterie, jams and pickles, chutneys, patés, honey and honeycomb; amazing vinegars such as the golden raspberry and apache chilli vinegar from Womersley Fruit & Herb Vinegars at Chipping Norton; Welsh slate cheeseboards and coasters, Dartington crystal glassware, handmade pottery, garlic pots, tapas plates, cushions, throws, picnic blankets, English pewter, soft drinks such as elderberry champagne, and pokier fare such as honey mead, Somerset cider, wine (the local Daws Hill Champagne which is a Vale Life favourite) gin, beers including the local XT range, a Vanilla beer from Devon and gluten free options, liqueurs, chocolate biscuits from Thame, gluten free cake, gift hampers... too

Joe and Hannah

much to list here - there’s even a refreshing selection of teas blended in Long Crendon by Jolly Brew! “It’ll be an ever changing mix,” says Joe. “Some products are seasonal and we’re looking for feedback and suggestions from customers as to what they like and if they have discovered something special they would like us to stock - we’ve already acted on a few requests. We love finding unusual items, something new for people to try, or it may be a traditional item that is hard to find today, we have some lovely greengage jam for example. “Beer and paté has been selling particularly well so far (the XT 15 is very popular), although my personal favourite at the moment is the garlic salami which I’m eating far too much of in my lunchtime sandwich!” “Sometimes we forget just how good British produce is,” says Hannah. “Salami doesn’t have to come from Italy, we do it very well here and we want to champion our home grown producers and support them in what they do. By bringing lots of high quality

British items together in one place we hope to raise awareness and introduce things that people might never have discovered and to supply British products that are not available in the supermarkets.” Deli at Nō.5 is on Thame’s pretty Buttermarket and well worth a visit, especially at this time of year, as there’s some great gift ideas and generally some tasty samples to try at the deli counter! The store is airy and inviting with a smart new oak floor that sets off the eclectic mix of farm-shop-chic style display units rather nicely, while the Deli at Nō.5 motto is clearly emblazoned on the wall - ‘Celebrating great British products with a great British lifestyle’. l The Deli at Nō.5, 5a Buttermarket, Thame, Oxfordshire, OX9 3EW Tel: 01844 214229 E: W: Open: Mon-Sat: 9am-5.30pm Closed from Christmas Day until January 5th. Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17



Column: Janice Issitt ‘Making the most of it’

Help for hedgehogs!


ome of you may know that I’m a volunteer at St. Tiggywinkles in Haddenham, (the wildlife rescue hospital). So I thought I would use this space to make an appeal. The early cold spell this year has brought a record number of hedgehogs to the centre - they have over 500 currently which are too small to make it through the winter if left outside. These hogs will spend the whole winter at Tiggy’s being fed, watered, kept warm and building up their weight and strength so they can go it alone in the wild come the Spring. You can imagine how much work this will be for the staff. The hedgehog is in decline in the UK. Numbers are down by 30% due to the destruction of their habitat and there are thought to be only one million left at present. We need to do everything we can to help and preserve them or we will lose them altogether. If you find a small hedgehog in your garden, try and check their weight. Put on some gardening gloves - they are easy to handle, and will probably just roll into a ball while you pick them up and weigh them. If they are under 600g then they haven’t enough fat on them to make it through winter hibernation.

Making the most of it

Feeding a baby hedgehog with a pipette/dropper When you rescue a hedgehog there’s a number of things you can do before you take it to the nearest wildlife centre. It will need heat food and water. Put some newspaper and towels into a high sided cardboard box with a hot water bottle wrapped in a towel (so it doesn’t scald the hedgehog). They like to eat cat or dog food and need some water to drink. If you can make it along to Tiggywinkles they are in great need of newspapers and towels over the coming months to put in the cages with their spiney guests. You can drop them into reception at the centre and while you are there have a look around at all the other permanent residents. They would also happily receive meaty flavoured

Welcome... Eat Well, Laugh Much, Drink Often...


Andy & Emma welcome you to The Boot, modern country pub and eating house, in the heart of the picturesque Chiltern Hills. Enjoy fresh, locally produced food, local ales and fabulous wines. Our chef creates exciting dishes suitable for all tastebuds, so families can dine in style. Christmas menu Tue-Thur: 2 course £25 / 3 course £30. Fri & Sat: 2 course £28 / 3 course £33. See website for menu. Saturday 31st Dec – Join us to welcome in the New Year - special menu, book ahead! Sunday 1st Jan, 2017 - open for brunch and lunch, please book ahead. Open: Tue-Sat: 11am-11pm, Sun 12noon-8pm Food served: Coffee & pastries from 11am Tue-Sat: 12noon-2.30pm and 6pm-9.30pm. Sundays: 12noon-6pm. Closed Mondays. Chinnor Road, Bledlow Ridge, High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire, HP14 4AW Tel: 01494 481499 | Email: Website: 68

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Janice Issitt

cat and dog food, if you can buy a few extra tins when you do your shopping. I often send Tiggy’s something from their Amazon wish list instead of buying Christmas cards, there’s a link to the list at: www. A great gift for the animal lover who has everything is to buy them an adoption. Choose their favourite animal and set up an adoption for either a monthly or one off payment, they will be sent a photo and certificate, information and a free visit to the visitors centre. More information can be found on the website. I hope everyone has a happy and peaceful new year and on behalf of all those hedgehogs, a big thank you in advance! l Read Janice’s blog at: http://janiceissittlifestyle. where she posts photo tutorials about things to make and lovely pictures of life in the Vale.

Stay Warm This Winter! Dry Logs

Prompt Delivery

Pick Up Only

Pre-Packed Coal

For Open Fires & Multifuel Stoves

Visit Us For:

- Large Selection Of Fruit & Vegetables - Extensive Freezer Selection- Home Produced Lamb & Beef - Top Brand Pet Foods & Animal Feeds - Chiltern Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil -

P E Mead & Sons Farm Shop Wilstone, Nr Tring, HP23 4NT 01442 828478

Harvest Moon

Tastefully decorated, authentic Chinese restaurant, serving traditional dishes to suit every taste. Eat-in and takeaway service. Perfect for parties - we can cater for groups of up to 50 people. Harvest Moon, 1 Pump Lane, Thame, Oxon, OX9 3BT Tel: 01844 215272 / 214834 Email: Website:

Community Matters Every month we give our time and money to local communities. We donate ÂŁ1000 to be shared by three good causes that you choose.

Waitrose Thame Supporting the community Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


l Column: Alan Candy’s Altomobiles

Lots for less Dacia Duster Laureate TCe 125 4x4


here’s been a right old dust-up in the SUV market, with legions of crossover vehicles battling it out in the hottest section of the market. So what better car to undercut the lot of them than the Dacia Duster? Dacia (that’s Datch-a, please, not Day-cia) has quickly won over hearts and minds for those who like something a little different and are watching the pennies. If you aren’t a badge snob, Dacia is an incredible bargain. A steal, in fact. And none more so than the Dacia Duster Laureate TCe 125 4x4 which I have been driving, which offers a ton of on board equipment, economical driving and even a pukka four-wheel

Dacia Duster Laureate


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Alan Candy’s

AltomobilES drive system with centre diff lock – all for £16,240. And my test car boasted £1,345 of extras –the list price is an amazing £14,895. So before you part with your cash, what are you getting? Apart from a shedload of equipment, here’s the lowdown – UK market Dacia Dusters are

Dacia Duster Laureate

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Dacia Duster Laureate built in Romania and the brand is owned by Renault, with parts sourced from across the RenaultNissan Alliance. Safe, reliable and award winning, the Duster looks the part and does the business. The compact 4x4 SUV is instantly recognisable, thanks to an eight-port grille, the looping Dacia badge up front, practical,

grey-painted alloys and some chunky roof rails with ‘Duster’ emblazoned on them. Interiors are practical and simple. Some cost cutting is evident from hard plastic on dash and doors and switchgear is a bit haphazard – much of it lies below knee level near the floor and is hard to spot on the move. Continued on page 73

Tel: 01844 274652

Email: Chinnor Road, Bledlow, Princes Risborough, Bucks HP27 9PH





0 01 A4




Risborough Train Station


0 B4






B4 44 4








A4 0 1 0

RSC 190x125 ad.indd 1

r no





and all other makes

00 B4




Aston Martin • Jaguar • Subaru • Landrover Mercedes • BMW • V W • Audi

2.5 miles from station

A41 29 LO NG W IC


Independent Specialists covering

Petrol Station


• Servicing & repairs all makes and models • MOT testing • • Brakes, batteries & exhausts • Specialists in 4 x 4 vehicles • • Full electronic diagnostics • Engine rebuilds & remapping • • Air conditioning (re-gas & servicing) • Tyre centre •

71 Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17 09:32 03/11/2012

l Column: Alan Candy’s Altomobiles

Dacia Duster Laureate

Tyres l Brakes l Batteries l Servicing l Exhausts l MOTs


01844 353388

Keeping You on the Move

Independent autocentre

offering dealership style service Fully equipped workshop using the latest diagnostic equipment l Comfortable waiting area with free hot drinks, tv, wifi and newspapers l Warranty safe servicing on all makes and models l Tyres, tyres, tyres all makes at guaranteed unbeatable prices l MOT testing on class 4, 5 and 7 l All repairs undertaken from clutches to total engine rebuilds l

Motologic Autocentre Unit 7, The Point, Gatehouse Way Aylesbury, Bucks, HP19 8DB Tel: 01296 422226 Tyres l Brakes l Batteries l Servicing l Exhausts l MOTs 72

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

40 Oakley Road, Chinnor, Oxfordshire, OX394ES (to rear of Claremont Automatics) Email:

Telephone: 01844 353388 l Bosch Car Service Centre l MOTs including Class VII (3.5 tonnes) l Servicing, repairs, tyres, exhausts and air

conditioning for cars and light commercials l Diagnostics: we have the most up to date work

shops and equipment in the area

l High ceilings and long ramps enable us to service

long wheelbase vans, campers and trucks

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

front and rear satin chrome scuff plates, black door sill protection strip, leather steering wheel, air But the main ‘infortainment’ screen has touchscreen operation con, DAB/FM/AM tuner with steering wheel mounted fingertip and is easy to operate; 30 and 70mph are flagged up individually controls, AUX output, Bluetooth connectivity, USB connection on the speedo and there’s the for MP3 players, speed limiter reassurance of 4WD that has a centre diff lock with selectable and cruise control. On a more practical note, there’s even a 2WD, Auto and Lock modes, operated from a rotary control on full-size spare wheel in the boot the console. – how many new cars still include one now? The Laureate model I drove As a nice change from diesel has a mass of extra equipment dirge, the test car was powered such as satin chrome side sills, Continued from page 71

by a frugal yet feisty 1.2-litre petrol engine that copes manfully with the job in hand without getting flustered. Quiet and smooth running, this 1,197cc unit hits 62mph in 11 seconds and proves surprisingly capable – it also achieves a combined 44.1mpg. Driving fun on the test car was slightly hampered by a sticky clutch that made smooth gear changing difficult but the Duster still handles reasonably well and proves a comfortable travelling companion, with excellent ride quality and cosy seating. Worth the money? For sure. I’m sold on the idea, just like thousands of others worldwide. Factfile: Model tested: Dacia Duster Laureate TCe 125 4x4. Price as tested: £16,240 (on the road price £14,895). Engine: Four-cylinder petrol unit of 1,197cc. Performance: 0-62mph in 11 secs, top speed 110mph.

Economy: Combined 44.1mpg. CO2 emissions: 145g/km. Transmission: Six-speed manual gearbox, centre differential lock with selectable 2WD, Auto and Lock modes. Key features: Eco mode; fullsize spare wheel; 16-inch alloy wheels; air con; leather steering wheel; speed limiter and cruise control; Stop & Start. Alternatives: Nissan Qashqai, from £18,545 Outsells the rest - the urban hero of the sector. Outstanding looks and an excellent drive. Kia Venga, from £11,995 More car-like than the Duster and excellent value but can’t compete with versatility. Peugeot Partner Tepee, from £15,815 Van-based ugly duckling has cavernous interior with lots of practical touches but lacks charm.

Buck’s leading Jaguar, Jap & performance car Specialists Tel: 01296 658257

try! ive us a ed G y l t iendA ll isappoinserviced r d e F b makes & R epaired t on’ t& Fas You w BMW & MINI Get the best from your car with our specialist Car Performance Specialists

Economy & Performance tuning service

Diesel tuning and ECU remaps - Auto Torque are specialists in ECU Remapping with over 20 years experience Servicing and repairs Engine diagnostics in the performance tuning of engine management systems 4 wheel laser ofalignment Diesel tuning and ECU remaps improving the efficiency the engine and giving your vehicle increased power output, torque and fuel economy MOTs arranged Tyre's, Brakes, Clutches, Exhausts l


T ired of M a i n De aler Pr i ce s ? For more details, find your car on our website Courtesy car available

Fast & Friendly Service Full workshop facilities

AutoTorque, Unit 9, UBF Industrial Estate, Bicester Road, Westcott, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP18 0JX Tel: 01296 658257

We service and repair all makes and models

We can service your car and m aint ain your warranty and oil and working to your m anufacturer’s guidelin es.

using movements genuin e par ts 24 Hour recover & by vehicle l l l l l l

Labour rate more than 50% less than m ain dealers Quality service and repairs Adv anced diagnostics Local collection and deliver y / Loan car av ailable MOTs/Windscreens/AirCon Recover y av ailable ProTechCars Ltd, Unit 20 Fleet Marston Farm, Fleet Marston, Aylesbury, Bucks, HP18 0PZ Tel: 01296 655799 / Mobile: 07774 604149 Email: Website: Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

l Column: On

The Road with Rob Auchterlonie

F for Fwhorrrr! Jaguar F-Pace


t’s one of the most hyped up and talked about cars in Jaguar’s recent history – the tongues have been wagging, the computer keys being mercilessly pounded. And why? Were they ever likely to produce something that wasn’t up to the high standards the Solihull manufacturer sets? To my memory they’ve never produced an out and out embarrassing bloater, and the F-Pace certainly isn’t one. The maker of luxury saloons has successfully completed the first foray into the burgeoning lands of crossover SUVs. It combines great styling and plenty of onboard room with pretty decent performance, especially in the four wheel drive


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Rob Auchterlonie

ON The Road 3.0d sampled here, which also doubled up as transport for a VIP (Very Important Princess) on her wedding day. The bride was a wow, and the stylish F-Pace attracted plenty of attention too with its gleaming Glacier White paintwork. The car is as luxurious and comfortable as you’d expect a Jaguar to be – all agreed on that – and while it’s up against some Continued on page 77

On The Road with Rob Auchterlonie

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Jaguar F-Pace

Independent Truck, Van & Car Repairer

Servicing l Inspections l MOT preparation l all makes & models l mercedes specialists l Breakdowns l Recovery service l Class 4/7 MOTs l courtesy vehicles l Mobile on-site servicing l

KM Commercials, Unit D8, Brunel Gate, Telford Close, Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP19 8AR Tel: 01296 488898 / 07720 706918 Open Monday to Friday 8am-6pm and Saturdays 8am to 1pm

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

l Column: On

The Road with Rob Auchterlonie

Jaguar F-Pace

For all your vehicle repairs, servicing & MOT testing a first-class service at competitive prices We are opposite Tesco Broadfields, Aylesbury Family run garage All makes & models l Servicing & repairs l MOT Testing (class 4 & 7) l Tyres l Exhausts l Brakes l Air-Con Regas l 4 Wheel Alignment l Cam belts l l

See our website for offers and services

2a & 3a Broadfields Court (opposite Tesco), Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, HP19 8BU Tel: 01296 432552


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

On The Road with Rob Auchterlonie tough opposition in the Audi Q5 and Porsche Macan, it’s more than capable of racking up sales for Jaguar, which is the object of the exercise. It’s the build quality that hits

Jaguar F-Pace

you first, more than living up to the expectation that there will be Jaguar DNA in there somewhere. The cabin is luxurious, comfortable and well insulated from what’s going on outside and there’s an ambient lighting strip on the doors that gives it an even

cosier feel as night draws in. Three engines are available, the 2.0 diesel coming in either rear or 4WD, while the 3.0 diesel and supercharged petrol having 4WD and an eight speed auto box as standard. The big diesel is a mover, capable of the sprint to 60 in under six seconds if you delve into the 700Nm of torque that’s available, and on to over twice the legal limit here, yet the combined fuel consumption is claimed to be in the high 40s. The eight speed auto box is a smooth shifting piece of equipment, helping deliver the pace without any undue fuss. Ride quality is up there too, though the huge 22 inch alloys fitted here as a £1,600 option, can accentuate the poor quality of the road you’re on but in the main, on a decent surface, the progress is serene. And boy, do those wheels look good! Fully loaded up – and by that I mean around 20 cases of wine and beer for aforementioned wedding

– the F-Pace felt even smoother in progress, so you should have no fears packing the family in for a lengthy trip with assorted luggage. It’s an impressive package, and probably all the more so because they’ve done it all themselves, without taking the easy option and ‘borrowing’ from their Land Rover stablemates. Exceptionally well equipped, stylish and above all else practical, it’s without doubt also one of the best looking SUVs on the market today. Who wouldn’t want one parked on their drive? FASTFACTS: Jaguar F-Pace S; £51,450; 2993 V6 AWD turbocharged diesel, 300ps, 700Nm; Top speed 150mph, 0-60mph 5.8secs; Fuel – urban 40.9, extra urban 50.4, combined 47.1; CO2 159g/km; Will it fit the garage? If it’s a big one, yes!

Taking away life’s little knocks...


Continued from page 74

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

0330 332 0663

R Dent Removal R Paint Correction R Paint Enhancement R Paint Protection

R Vehicle Detailing R Window Tinting R Alloy Wheel Refurbishment

Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Sales, Consumables and Spares Website:

Telephone: 0800 246 5371 Email:

ticed? Do you need tognge, taffonordable Stunning desi nt customer prices and excelle with us… service. Stick

spread the word…

01296 423769

K Collins Roofing Ltd Roofing Specialist

Local business, Roofmaster approved, Established 1969

Flat, felt and rubber roofing We also do slate and tiling repairs, PVC fascia boarding and chimney repointing

Call today for a free estimate 01296 655526 / 07831 465501 Email: Ad 1


9:48 am

Page 1

R.W. PEARCE & SON LTD RO O F I N G C O N T R AC T O R S Established 1958 Specialists in re-roofing Period Properties, Country Cottages, Farm Houses and Barns, using traditional materials. Slating and tiling repairs undertaken.

01844 345859


Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17

Your friendly & reliable local plumbing service Gemma Lawrence-Davis T: 01296 425969 M: 07769 330983 E:

Your Professional Christmas Party DJ

Everything you need for your party whatever the size - from professional DJs to state-of-the-art Sound & Lighting and an incredible party atmosphere! Proudly providing the best mobile disco and special event DJs in Buckinghamshire

Please call: 07518 306552 / 01296 485885 Email:

Windmill Services Property Maintenance & general building work

Telephone: 01844 279519 Freephone: 0800 7837194 Email: Website:

ed! v o M e We’v Visit our website or call us on Road N. College nton the same number Aston Cli Z 826846. 01442 E H P22 5

Want to boost business? Looking for local advertising?

Business Cards, Roller Banners, Leaflets, Folders & more



Be seen in a magazine 35,000+ local people read and enjoy. For size of advert & circulation you will find our rates are the best too! Call: 07702 006218

Visit our walk-in store at Midshires House Midshires Business Park, Fairford Leys, Aylesbury HP19 8HL


Oliver Twist


local handyman

Chimney Sweep

no job too small

0777 5630 432

Painting, decorating & tiling

Shelving & flat-packs Any property maintenance Gutters cleaned Clean, tidy & reliable t 01296 580196 m 07720 751362



logs for sale

Design • Consultancy • Installation

Free local delivery One 1 tonne load £60 l Two 1 tonne loads £100 l l

Specialists in quality kitchen design, consultancy and supply for 30 years

Tel: 07976 002109 Tel: 07985 131666

For more information please contact Robin: Tel: 07530 932797 Email: 10


Y-line Y-LK glanzsuperweiß gloss super white blanco súper brillante TU nordic wood natur nordic wood natural madera nórdica natural

Guaranteed quality Unique price promise Established since 1994 Contact us:

01296 488902

Workwear for local businesses • • • • • •

High quality garments for your staff Huge choice, great value for money In-house embroidery of your logo Fast order turn round for your needs Flexible and personal service levels Ask for copies of our FREE catalogues

01844 338941 Vale Life : Dec/Jan 2016-17


Vale Life Magazine Dec-Jan 2016-17 web edition  

Local lifestyle magazine for Aylesbury, Thame, Wendover, Princes Risborough, Tring, Chinnor, Winslow, Waddesdon and surrounding area.

Vale Life Magazine Dec-Jan 2016-17 web edition  

Local lifestyle magazine for Aylesbury, Thame, Wendover, Princes Risborough, Tring, Chinnor, Winslow, Waddesdon and surrounding area.