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South Wilts magazine










Pine & Oak Panels Hardwoods Joinery & Treated Softwood Underlay

Tel: 01985 844771 Email: Bradley Lane, Maiden Bradley, Wiltshire BA12 7JR

contents Published by Wired Publishing Editor Lisa Rockliffe Contributors Craig Gates-Mutton, Phil Rockliffe, Brian Donaldson, Andy Diffey Advertising Enquiries Lisa Rockliffe e: t: 01225 807775 General Enquiries e: t: 01225 807775 Address 20 Azalea Drive, Trowbridge, Wiltshire BA14 9GG This magazine is printed on paper sourced from sustainable forests. Please recycle it when you are done, or pass it on! The publishers shall not be held liable for any loss occasioned by the failure of an advertisement to appear, or any damage or inconvenience caused by errors, omissions or misprints. Reproduction of this magazine in whole, or in part is strictly prohibited wihout prior permission of the publishers.

January/February 2018 // issue 51


nd suddenly 2018 is upon us. From the feast of Christmas to the famine of new year; if you are anything like me you’ve embarked on a new year health kick! Cutting down on the booze, eating better and moving more are all on the ‘to do’ list this month, and we have both food and exercise covered (two out of three ain’t bad!). Try our delicious slow cooked recipes (p14) for ideas on how to eat well, and when it comes to exercise the experts at Evolved Health (p12) should have you ship shape in no time. Away from new year resolutions, there’s plenty more to enjoy in this edition. We catch up with Irish comedian Ed Byrne ahead of his arrival in Salisbury later this year, plus we preview the new Spring Season at Salisbury Arts Centre. On the house and home front we’ve also spoken with local agents Northwood about the costs of becoming a landlord.




As well as all that we, of course, have your usual favourites in here too. Enjoy! Lisa Rockliffe, Editor Follow us on Twitter... @wiredpublishing Read online...

in this issue... HOMES & GARDENS

LOCAL LISTINGS What’s on in January/February





Evolved Health


Ed Byrne Interview




New wildflower meadow at Stonehenge


The costs of being a landlord FEATURES

Spring Season 2018 at Salisbury Arts Centre

Feed the birds this winter

Quiz, wordsearch & sudoku

FOOD & DRINK Slow cooked recipes



Valentine’s Day gifts for foodies


The Last Word



Front Cover: Griff Rhys Jones



| events




Rebecca Ferguson, City Hall

Malthouse Lane, Salisbury, SP2 7TU Box Office: 01722 434434 For full listings go to the website. SUGGS - LIFE IN THE REALM OF MADNESS 3 February, 7.30pm Tickets: £30.50 Due to huge popular demand, after his first tour-de-force, smash hit, one-man show, ‘My Life Story’, Suggs is treading the boards again. JIVE TALKIN’ 10 February, 7.30pm Tickets: £18 The timeless repertoire of the Bee Gees is brought to life in this stunning stage production that is taking the country by storm. REBECCA FERGUSON 14 February, 7pm Tickets: from £24.50 Continuing to flourish as a confident songwriter and stunning live performer this workingclass girl from


Suggs, City Hall


Liverpool has no plans on stopping anytime soon. SING-A-LONG-A BEAUTY & THE BEAST (Cert PG) 16 February, 7pm Tickets: £17, under 16s £12 + family tickets available Celebrate the brand new adaptation of Disney’s iconic fairy tale with on-screen lyrics so everyone can join in.

HUNDRED WATT CLUB 17 February, 8pm Tickets: £17 Hundred Watt Club return with a seductive, sublime & ridiculous evening of good old fashioned burlesque entertainment. Over 18s only. DANCE TO THE MUSIC 23 February, 7.30pm Tickets: £30 ‘Dance to the Music’ is a new, exciting, must see, dance show like no other created by and starring Kristina Rihanoff. Kristina will once again team up with her former professional dance partner, Robin Windsor and Oksana Platero, who partnered Judge Rinder on Series

Send your listings to

events | 14 of the hit show. Joining Kristina, Robin and Oksana are a full cast of dancers, plus two amazing singers, Chris Maloney, and Beth Sherburn. ALL STAR SUPERSLAM WRESTLING 24 February, 7.30pm Tickets: £15 Superslam wrestling returns after a sell-out country wide tour earlier this year, for a night of top action for all the family to enjoy. AN EVENING WITH ANT MIDDLETON 28 February, 7.30pm Tickets: £24.50 Ant Middleton, adventurer, survival expert, TV presenter, ex elite forces soldier, will be sharing his experiences and exploits as a modern day explorer and expedition leader.

SALISBURY PLAYHOUSE Malthouse Lane, Salisbury SP2 7RA Box Office: 01722 320333 For full listings go to the website. JACK & THE BEANSTALK Until 7 January, various times Tickets: from £12.50 With more than 10,000 tickets sold

An Evening with Ant Middleton, City Hall

Jack and The Beanstalk is already Salisbury’s fastest selling pantomime, this is your last chance to see it!

performs a foot-tapping evening of dance music and jazz from the 20s and 30s.

THE PASADENA ROOF ORCHESTRA 12 January, 7.30pm Tickets: £22 Back by popular demand, the world famous Pasadena Roof Orchestra

GRIFF RHYS JONES: WHERE WAS I? 19 January, 7.30pm Tickets: £19.50 Join the star of Not the Nine o’clock News, Alas Smith & Jones and Three Men In A Boat as he airs stories, anecdotes, reminiscences and outright lies.

Griff Rhys Jones, Salisbury Playhouse

A PASSAGE TO INDIA 22 – 27 January, 7.30pm Tickets: £27 Multi award-winning ensemble simple8 transport us to Imperial India, conjuring up the elephants and caves, courthouses and temples with the simplest and boldest means. MURDER, MARGARET & ME 1 – 24 February, 7.30pm Tickets: £27 Agatha Christie turns sleuth to uncover a real-life mystery in this comedy thriller. Send your listings to



| events

SALISBURY MUSEUM 65 The Close, Salisbury SP1 2EN Tel: 01722 332151 Normal admission charges apply unless stated LOST SALISBURY OPERA REDISCOVERED: A TALK BY NIGEL WYATT 17 January, 6.30pm Tickets: £8 Local musician Nigel Wyatt came across a manuscript copy of the score for the missing opera in the Cambridge University Library during his researches into the cultural life of Salisbury. He will talk about the process of bringing the opera back to life after 200 years, and the historical context in which it was written. SALISBURY SNAPPED 20 January – 26 August Normal admission charges apply. An exhibition showing photographs from the Salisbury Museum and Salisbury Journal photographic archives. How has Salisbury changed through the decades? BRIAN GRAHAM: TOWARDS MUSIC 27 January – 12 May Normal admission charges apply.

This exhibition of the work of artist Brian Graham, represents a unique interpretation of the evolution of music and dance. CAVE OF SOUNDS 27 January – 12 May Normal admission charges apply. The Cave of Sounds is an interactive installation featuring up to eight original electronic musical instruments.


Bedwin Street, Salisbury, SP1 3UT Box Office: 01722 321744 SNOW MOUSE 5-7 January, various times Tickets: various prices Watch two friends embark on an adventure in a magical forest full of play, puppetry, music and wonder in this enchanting tale for babies and the very young to enjoy with their families. PROFESSOR AC GRAYLING: WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT EUROPE 11 January, 7.30pm Tickets: £10 (Concs £5) A.C. Grayling is the Master of the New

College of the Humanities, London, and its Professor of Philosophy, and the author of over thirty books of philosophy, biography, history of ideas, and essays. BIG BAND BRUNCH 14 January & 4 February, 12 noon Tickets: £6 (Concs £5) Enjoy music from the Girls Only Jazz Orchestra. Performing Swing classics and fresh new hits, this group will blow you away with its Big Band sound. LIVE LUNCH: JOE BURKE 20 January, 12 noon FREE Influenced by the greats, past and present, his style meanders between Dylan-esque storytelling with fingerpicked acoustic folk guitar work to slide and blues guitar and tap style. JENNI MURRAY: ‘THE HISTORY OF BRITAIN IN 21 WOMEN’ 20 January, 7.30pm Tickets: £18 (Concs £16) In this personal selection Jenni Murray draws together the lives of twentyone women to shed light upon a variety of social, political, religious and cultural aspects of British history. WILLIE & THE BANDITS 1 February, 7.30pm Tickets: £12 (Concs £11) Essentially Wille and the Bandits is a classic blues rock three piece much in the vein of Cream or The Jimi Hendrix experience. WHEY DOWN SOUTH 14 February, 8pm Tickets: £12 (Concs £10) Join a theatrical quest to preserve the age old tradition of cheese rolling and fight the looming influence of big money.

Jenni Murray, Salisbury Arts Centre



LEGO BEACH 16 February, 8pm Tickets: £12 (Concs £10) Send your listings to

| events If 4.8 million pieces of LEGO® washed up on your shore, what would you build? In 1997 a freak storm exposed a containership of LEGO® to the power of the tide, scattering the pieces across the ocean floor. Based on true events and devised by the company, the play explores the unlikely connections that only tiny pieces of plastic can build. PRACTICE X 20 February, 7.30pm Tickets: £7 (Concs £5) An evening of theatre extracts of work. Enter with an open mind, discover four exciting companies and contribute your thoughts to what you’ve seen. Your ticket includes a free drink and a post-show discussion with the artists.


13 Bell Street, Shaftesbury SP7 8AR Box Office: 01747 854321 For full listings go to the website. LADY MACBETH 5 January, 8pm Tickets: £7 Adapted from a 19th century Russian novella, with the action transplanted to rural England. A young bride who has been sold into marriage to an

Beauty & The Beast (PG), Shaftesbury Arts Centre



Tickets: £4 Adaptation of the classic fairy tale about a monstrous-looking prince and the young woman he keeps captive in his enchanted castle falling in love.

Potato Weekend, Courtens Garden Centre

older man enters into an affair with a worker on the estate. TREASURE ISLAND 24 January – 3 February, various Tickets: various prices There are fights, treacherous deeds, heroism and an action packed and fast moving story of dare devil on the high seas. This swash-buckling, rip roaring adventure story offers an alternative to the usual pantomimes. ELLE (Cert 18) 9 February, 8pm Tickets: £7 A successful businesswoman gets caught up in a game of cat and mouse as she tracks down the unknown man who raped her. BEAUTY & THE BEAST (Cert PG) 17 February, 2pm

A QUIET PASSION (Cert 12A) 23 February, 8pm Tickets: £7 A biographical film of American poet, Emily Dickinson, from her days as a young schoolgirl to her later years as a reclusive and, at that time, unrecognised artist.

OTHERS POTATO WEEKEND 10 & 11 February, 9.30am – 4pm Courtens Garden Centre, Whiteparish, SP5 2SD A beautiful quilt to be raffled for Parkinson’s UK as just one of the attractions for Potato Weekend. Meet the Test Valley Wood Turners and The Woodland Trust, watch demos of willow weaving and wildlife painting. Stay and enjoy a lovely lunch in the Shed cafe by the roaring log fire. Choose from 40 varieties of potatoes and various veg seed all sold loose. For details call 01794 884489 or go to . PIANO RECITAL 10 February, 4.30pm St Martin’s Church, Salisbury “Tread softly…you tread on my dreams” Two Pianos, Nicholas Woods & Gill Bolton play duets and solos inspired by memory, legend and dreams. To include Reflets dans l’eau, La Cathedrale engloutie and Toccata by Debussy, Paysage, Mazeppa and Ricordanza by Liszt, Overture to a Midsummer Night’s Dream by Mendelssohn, Grand Scherzo by Mozart arr. Anderson, Sabre Dance by Khachaturian and Capriccio Espagnol by Rimsky-Korsakov. Homemade cakes included. Further details call 01722 333288 or go to

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| local news

Spring season at Salisbury Arts Centre T

Tickets for the full line up of live events for the Spring 2018 Season at Salisbury Arts Centre are now on sale.

he Arts Centre’s varied programme features events that offer something for everyone - world class theatre, exceptional music and dance, some of comedy’s biggest names plus delightful productions for younger audiences.

Our Life With Birds

SEASON’S HIGHLIGHTS INCLUDE: SPOKEN WORD Our Life With Birds, Friday 2 February It’s not often you see birds on stage in a theatre and even more rare to see one flying over the audience but ‘Our Life with Birds’ promises to give audiences a rare opportunity to meet Golden Eagles, Peregrine Falcons, hawks, owls, starlings and many more - all raised and trained with the utmost loving care by bird handlers Lloyd and Rose Buck. Over the last 25 years, Lloyd and his wife Rose have devoted their lives to taking care of birds and mastering the art of capturing them on film. They are, without a doubt, the world’s experts at tracking birds and in-flight filming. Between them Lloyd and Rose have been involved with over 100 different productions and feature films and have worked with every natural history television star including Sir David Attenborough, Steve Backshall, Bear Grylls, Michaela Strachan, Chris Packham, Kate



Humble and many more. They often appear on camera themselves and are frequent guests on BBC programmes such as ‘The One Show’, ‘Springwatch’ and ‘Countryfile’. From Tilly the Golden Eagle to Poppy the pigeon, it’s unusual to find Lloyd and Rose without one of their feathered family under their arms. This show is illustrated with Lloyd and Rose’s own film footage and photography and is suitable for all ages. It promises to be an interactive wildlife experience like no other!

MUSIC Theatre Fest West: Louise Jordan ‘No Petticoats Here’, Thursday 15 February Award winning singer, songwriter and musician Louise Jordan brings to life inspirational women who challenged expectations.

From the woman who dressed as a soldier on the Western Front to the women football players banned by the FA (including St.Helens’ own Lily Parr), the ambulance drivers running the gauntlet of enemy fire in Flanders and the so-called ‘surplus million’ single women. Inspirational women, working in a time of conflict, leaving a legacy. No Petticoats Here

local news |

THEATRE A Brave Face, Friday 2 March The award-winning Vamos Theatre brings its trademark, wordless, full mask style to a story that needs to be told. Set in Afghanistan in 2009, A Brave Face explores Post-Traumatic Stress, an unseen injury of war, and the impact it can have on even the closest of families. With engaging storytelling, physical dexterity and emotional insight, A Brave Face engages audiences across borders and boundaries.

audience are taken on a gentle and immersive journey exploring the world of reflective materials wrapped up in a soundscape of evocative yet laid-back music. Watch as the empty space of the theatre fills with colour, sounds and surprises, creating a sensory landscape ready to explore after the performance is over.

Landscapes, Saturday 17 March Sit inside Mimika’s beautiful hand made tent and experience an intimate, magical and quite unique theatre presentation which will enchant both children and adults “The Enormous Room”, alike. Using no words, Mimika Tuesday 20 March In the latest production from Stopgap combine over 30 puppet creatures with an original musical score and Dance Company, we follow a father stunning visual effects to capture the and daughter coming to terms with atmosphere, rhythms, sounds and the loss of Jackie – their wife and movements of the Desert, Rainforest, mother. Combining exquisite detail in movement with evocative text and under the Sea and Antarctica. Suitable design, this performance will take you for ages 3 - 11 years. somewhere in between this world and the next. Thoughtful, moving and COMEDY Clare Summerskill: From Fairly uplifting, this is a show about saying Vocal to Varifocal, Friday 6 April goodbye and moving on. A celebratory evening of songs and comedy. Clare Summerskill “Too Pretty to Punch”, is a standup comedienne, singerFriday 20 April An exploration of trans violence and songwriter, actress and writer who combines many of her amazing our image obsessed culture, told talents in this show which explores through clowning, animation and the lives, loves, and reflections of a spoken word. It’s also a one person middle-aged lesbian. celebration of international trans visibility and self-acceptance; a mix of clown, mime, music, spoken word Her humour is warm and often far too close to the bone, and her and video projection focusing on society’s obsession with trans bodies, comedy songs are hilarious. Women (and men) of any age and sexual judging our acceptability on how orientation will adore her unique attractive we are and the horrifically take on matters of age, looks, weight, high rates of trans homicide and love and lust. suicide around the world, swinging violently between light hearted FILM comedy cabaret and dark humour. The Red Turtle, Thursday 18 January FAMILY A man becomes shipwrecked on a Glisten, Saturday 17 February desert island populated by turtles, Interactive, intimate and unique crabs and birds in this enchanting, performance for babies aged 0 - 18 dialogue free animation. His months and their grown-ups. The

attempts to escape are continuously thwarted by a mysterious red turtle and it is only when he comes to respect his surroundings he grows to understand his place on the island. A beautifully drawn meditation on nature and existence that will captivate castaways of all ages. The Midwife, Wednesday 31 January Catherine Denevue stars as a loud, eccentric and impulsive woman, who, out of the blue re-enters the life of her ex lovers daughter, a straight laced midwife who already has enough on her plate to deal with. Despite being opposites in every way, they learn to accept one another and, by revealing long-held secrets, try to make up for lost years.

WORKSHOPS SQUAWK: Queer Cinema Since 1990. Saturday 21 April New Queer Cinema emerged in North America in 1990, offering a form of filmmaking that challenged previous, often stereotypical portrayals of queers, lesbians, gays, bisexuals and trans-individuals. We’ll look at what ‘queer cinema’ actually is, what it means to filmmakers and audiences, and its depictions of LGBTQIA+ individuals over the past 3 decades in films such as Boys Don’t Cry, Brokeback Mountain and Carol. Tickets for all events are available online at or from Salisbury Arts Centre box office on 01722 321744. • Queer Cinema Since 1990



| local news

Look & feel great in 2018! Evolved Health is building quite a fanbase thanks to an unrivalled reputation for delivering superb personal training and physical therapy in Salisbury...


volved Health is a personal training facility that is pioneering, innovative, and focused on delivering results, whilst having fun. Evolved helps people get the best possible gym experience, and as we begin a new year, with so many of us looking for a way to feel healthier and look better, it’s well worth finding out a little more about what they do.

Evolved work with the individual in front of them, deliberately steering clear of a ‘one size fits all’ approach. Founder Matt Chappell says, “Evolved understand that each client they see is investing in themselves, and placing their trust in them to get results. It’s a responsibility we take seriously. One of our mottos is ‘trust the process’.”

“It is often said personal training is an expensive luxury, but Evolved turn that into a valuable essential.”

At this private fitness facility, all sessions are by appointment only. There is no queueing for kit and there are no time limits in force for the equipment. Their 1:1 or semiprivate (two to three people sharing a session) options mean you get personal attention and access to the superb gym at a time that suits you.

Using tried and tested programmes and approaches, they avoid fads and gimmicks. Incorporated into sessions are elements of strength, endurance, mobility, flexibility and cardio exercises.

It is often said personal training is an expensive luxury, but Evolved turn that into a valuable essential.

What’s more with their different training options it doesn’t cost as much as you think, with small group female training classes costing from only £10 per session. These fun sessions use HIIT, bodyweight exercises, weight training and punchbag work to achieve great results. Alternatively, their semi private personal training (from £20 per session) allows you to share a training session, and the cost, with spouse/friend, with programs designed specific to your goals. To find out more about how Matt Chappell and his team can help you transform your health and body in 2018 call 01722 415302 or email

Evolved Health is one of the most innovative fitness centres in the region







T 1:1 personal training BACE K SHAPE IIN weight loss N 2018! injury rehab sports massage COME AND SEE OUR STATE-OF-THE-ART FACILITY


| recipes


Take it

Enjoy these delicious dishes that taste all the better for a little more time… They come courtesy of Waitrose.

Slow-Cooked Pig's Cheeks with Pea Tops & Seared Scallops Serves 2



Method Preheat the oven to 150ºC. Coat the pig’s cheeks in seasoned flour. Heat the oil in a flameproof casserole dish on the hob, add the pig’s cheeks and cook for for 1–2 minutes until browned. Add the soy sauce, honey, stock, star anise and rice vinegar. Cover and bake in the oven for about 3 hours until the pork is tender and falling apart.

Just before the pork is done, in a small frying pan, sear the 4 scallops in the butter for 2–3 minutes on each side or until golden brown. To serve, place the pig’s cheeks together in the centre of 2 plates, top with a handful of pea tops and 2 scallops, then lightly drizzle with some of the cooking liquid.

Ingredients 6 pig’s cheeks, about 400g, or alternatively use a pork belly joint Seasoned flour 1 tbsp olive oil 75ml dark soy sauce 100g clear honey 300ml chicken stock 4-5 star anise 20ml Chinese rice vinegar 4 roeless scallops 10g butter 25g pea tops

Hearty Beef & Beetroot Stew Serves 4 Ingredients 400g diced braising steak 3 beef stock cubes 1 tbsp plain flour 1 tbsp olive oil 2 onions, sliced 2 carrots, thickly sliced 1 cinnamon stick 180g pack Waitrose Sweetfire Beetroot Wedges, cubed Method Tip the beef into a large bowl then crumble over 1 of the stock cubes. Add the flour and toss together well until the meat is evenly coated.

Slow Spiced Pork with Dried Fruit & WalnutS Serves 4

Ingredients 800g any stewing pork leg or shoulder 2 tbsp plain flour 3 tbsp sunflower oil 1 large onion, sliced 3 sticks celery, sliced 2 cloves garlic, chopped 1 tsp ground cinnamon 1 tsp ground mace 1 tsp mild curry powder 2 tbsp thyme leaves 100g soft dates, chopped 100g soft apricots, chopped Juice of 1 orange 500ml dry white wine 25g walnut pieces Chopped parsley, to serve

recipes |

Method Preheat the oven to 170ºC. Toss the pork in the seasoned flour to coat. Heat half the oil in a non-stick frying pan and fry the pork on all sides until browned. Remove with a slotted spoon and place in an ovenproof casserole dish.

Heat the oil in a large saucepan and cook the meat over a high heat until nicely browned. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add the onions to the hot pan and cook for 5 minutes until softened and golden. Return the meat and any resting juices to the pan. Add the carrots, cinnamon stick and 500ml water then crumble in the remaining 2 stock cubes. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer gently for 2–2½ hours until the meat is very tender. Stir in the beetroot and cook for 5 minutes or so until heated through. Serve with mashed potatoes.

Heat the remaining oil in the pan, add the onion, celery and chopped garlic and cook gently for 3–4 minutes until softened. Add the spices and cook for a minute. Add the thyme leaves, dates, apricots and orange juice and wine. Season and bring to the boil. Pour over the pork in the casserole dish and place in the oven for 1½–2 hours until the pork is tender. THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE


| recipes

Ingredients 1 tbsp olive oil 600g lamb shoulder chops 400g pack vegetable and bean stew mix (find in the chiller) 2 tsp Bart Ras El Hanout Spice Mix 1 tbsp tomato purée 1 tbsp clear honey 100g soft apricots, halved Method Heat the oil in a heavy based ovenproof casserole dish; add the lamb and fry until golden on both sides.



Serves 4 Add the stew mix, spice mix, tomato purée and seasoning and pour in enough cold water (about 500ml) to just cover. Bring to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer gently for 1½ hours until the lamb is tender, stirring occasionally. Add the honey and apricots to the pan and return to the heat for a further 30 minutes. Serve with cous cous.

Cook’s tips At the end of step 1, transfer the meat to a slow-cooker dish. Add the stew mix, spice mix, purée, seasoning and 250ml cold water. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours or on high for 3 hours, until the lamb is tender. Add the honey and apricots, cover and cook for a further 30 minutes. Season again to taste.

Lamb Tagine

gifts |

Emma Bridgewater Pink Hearts Melamine Plate, £8.98 Laurent Perrier Cuvee Rose Brut NV Champagne, £50.34

The Dalmore Cigar Malt Reserve Whisky, £71.50

Love, Love, Love Great Valentine’s Day gifts for foodies. They’re all available now from

Charbonnel et Walker Pink Marc de Champagne Truffles, £9.99

Le Creuset Classic Cast Iron Heart Casserole, £140

LSA International Lulu Champagne Flute (Set of 4), £36.99

Warner Edwards Distillery Victoria’s Rhubarb Gin, £37.37 THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE


| interview

Mister Ed

Ed Byrne brings his new show to Salisbury later this year. BRIAN DONALDSON spoke to him to find out more about what audiences can expect from Spoiler Alert.


Photos: Roslyn Gaunt



d Byrne has been an acclaimed stand-up for 20 years. His success with shows such as the Roaring Forties, Different Class and the 1998 Perrier-award nominated A Night At The Opera led to him appearing on the box in the likes of Mock The Week and Father Ted, while his love of hillwalking resulted in him writing a regular column for The Great Outdoors magazine. Meanwhile his love of natural history has crossed into television with appearances on The One Show (abseiling in Snowdonia), Countryfile (climbing Sgùrr Dearg, the ‘inaccessible pinnacle’ on Skye) and presenting items on Volcano Live (BBC). He is also co-host of the highly acclaimed Dara & Ed’s Big Adventure and follow up Dara & Ed’s Road To Mandalay, both on BBC2.

interview | In his new touring show Ed compares and contrasts the old-school child-rearing days with 21st century methods and suggests there are different ways to learn how to be a mum or dad. “I grew up in what I would call an aspirational household, in that my parents bettered themselves over the course of my childhood. My mother was a radiographer and ended up a lecturer in radiography, while my dad was a sheet metal worker and went up to a supervisory role. I’d still say that you are expected to do a lot more parenting than our parents did and that’s weird because you tend to think that your parents are where you learned parenting from. But you don’t, really, it’s more that you look around you to see what’s going on with other parents.” The Irish comic is firmly of a belief that the current breed of parents spoil their kids rotten whether it’s to do with the ever-increasing size of garden trampolines, or his own kids’ demand for elderflower cordial. “My dad wasn’t a bad dad, he was just a 1970s dad. If I could never see my children again from this moment on,

at areas where we could perhaps do with being spoiled a little bit more. “Where I think we’re not acting spoiled enough is in the political arena. We have a tendency to accept what’s happening and that’s where we should be acting more entitled: we are literally entitled to the government we want. We’re spoiled in all these little ways, but not spoiled enough.” As well as stories about his two young sons, Ed weaves in routines about running out of petrol in the most awkward place imaginable, helping rescue an injured man in the Cairngorms, and the nation-dividing campaign and result of the EU referendum. His way of tackling Brexit is to draw an analogy with the time his son was determined to touch an electric fence with his dad trying to warn him of the dangers. “I was telling the story of the electric fence for a while, and then suddenly it struck me that it was Brexit in microcosm. I don’t want to alienate half of the population or maybe a third of my audience, but it works as an analogy whichever side you’re on.

“THE IRISH COMIC IS FIRMLY OF A BELIEF THAT THE CURRENT BREED OF PARENTS SPOIL THEIR KIDS ROTTEN” I’ve already done more parenting then he did in my entire life. But, of course, I made a conscious decision that I was going to be an awesome dad. My wife will come back with tales from her friends of how awful their husbands are and she’ll see me smiling and say ‘alright, stop congratulating yourself just because such and such can’t be left alone with their children for two minutes’.” For the show Ed extends his analysis on the culture of entitlement to look

middle classes. Where once he would do routines slating 4x4 owners, he is now the proud(ish) owner of such a vehicle. And in the poster for his tour, he brandishes other signifiers of social mobility: a bowtie and chainsaw. “It’s one of two I own: that one is the smaller of the two,” Ed remarks of his chainsaw rather than his neckwear. “I use it for firewood, both for my wood burning stove and also for the barbecue. The first time I used one I was fine, though I think it worried my parents that I had bought a chainsaw.” Having premiered Spoiler Alert at last year’s Edinburgh Fringe, it is fully ready to go. “Being on stage is enjoyable and this part of the writing process is enjoyable. The empty page though is a scary thing. On this leg of the tour I do about an hour and 15 minutes, plus I’ll have a support act. I keep a tour diary now of places where the curries are disappointing and where they are good and where audiences have been good before.” Ed Byrne arrives in our region later this month..... Go and spoil yourself. ED BYRNE: SPOILER ALERT comes to Salisbury City Hall on 1 May. To book tickets go online or call 01722 434434. •

The government told you not to do this and that it would be a terrible idea, but you said ‘no, we want to do it anyway’. So now we’re doing it and it’s proving a terrible idea. I do think it’s a fair analogy, but no doubt for some it will come across as me being a typical liberal elite Remoaner.” Spoiler Alert also continues a theme that he’s tackled in previous shows, that of his gradual shift from being a working-class Dubliner to a fully paid-up rural-residing member of the THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE


| later life

A natural burial ground

For those wanting a different option for their funeral and burial, Michael’s Wood in Cholderton offers a beautiful, natural alternative to traditional cemetaries.


ichael’s Wood is a beautiful woodland burial ground for both pets and people and is part of the Cholderton Estate, an organic working farm on the Hampshire/Wiltshire border. The burial ground is a truly beautiful alternative to a traditional cemetery or graveyard. A woodland burial is the ideal choice for those seeking somewhere more natural and

Michael’s Wood offers a beautiful setting and a choice of plots

All religions, faiths and cultures are accommodated, and each funeral is as unique as the individual person or pet. You can choose a full service or have a private intimate gathering at the plot side. You can use a funeral director or work with them directly. You may choose to have a reading, poems, music, a bugler or even a picnic. Whatever you decide you are encouraged to do what feels right for you and the staff can give

“A woodland burial is the ideal choice for those seeking somewhere more natural and beautiful to hold a funeral” beautiful to hold a funeral and remember a loved one or pet. The owners are passionate about dispelling myths and empowering everyone who wants to have the best experience possible when it comes to making arrangements for a funeral. They offer full burial plots, ashes burial plots or the scattering of ashes within the woodland grounds.



advice and examples of celebrations they have had at the woods. There is the capacity to put up gazebos if the weather dictates and they offer chairs if required. There is also disabled access. Whether you choose a burial or interment of ashes, they prepare the grave for you and back-fill afterwards.

As with all graves you can choose to leave it as is, place a wooden or portland stone memorial, or plant a living memorial. They are unique in that they also allow joint human and pet interments. At Michael’s Wood there is also the option of choice of plot location. Some people prefer an open sunny area, others prefer being under the canopy of trees. They want you to feel the area is right for you. They also offer advance reservation of plots, which enables you to specify your wishes and gives peace of mind for you and your loved ones. To find out more or to arrange a visit to Michael’s Wood call 01980 629203. •

An environmentally friendly, cost effective alternative to traditional funerals, cemeteries & graveyards. • A place of peace & tranquility, abundant with wildlife. • Full burials, interment of ashes or scattering of ashes. • All religions and cultures accommodated.

• Advanced reservations available.

The Estate Office, Cholderton, Nr Salisbury, Wiltshire, SP4 0DR Telephone: 01980 629203 Email:

| house & home

Feed the Birds this winter RICHARD CUMMING Managing Director of Orchard Park in Gillingham, explains how we can all do our bit to help wildlife through their most difficult time of year.


inter is often a difficult time for wildlife with natural food harder to find and the last of the autumn berries gone, the ground may be frozen or waterlogged and insects are scarce. When the temperatures fall, birds use more energy fluffing up their feathers to stay warm and with the short daylight hours there is less time to search for food. However, we can lend them a helping hand by making food, fresh water and shelter available in our gardens.

Mixed seed feeders are great but can get dominated by larger birds that frighten smaller ones away. One solution to this problem is to put the foods that attract the larger birds in a separate feeder away from the others. A bird feeding station is not just useful in winter, you

“Bird feeding stations made up of bird tables and hanging feeders filled with high energy food will give wild birds a greater chance of making it through to the spring.”



At Orchard Park we have everything you need to help care for birds and other wildlife this winter, including feeding stations, food and more. You will also find bee and insect hotels and in the spring you can expect to find a wide variety of bee and insect friendly plants too! •

Bird feeding stations made up of bird tables and hanging feeders filled with high energy food will give wild birds a greater chance of making it through to the spring. Different birds feed in different ways from hanging to ground feeders and they like different food

so the more varied the selection of food available, the more variety of birds you will attract. For example, peanuts will attract birds such as jays, woodpeckers, tits and nuthatches while the garden robin loves meal worms.

they are raising young.

can continue to support the wild bird population as they will benefit from the additional food during the nest building period as well as when

| house & home

The cost of running a rental property MARYAM CALVERT at Northwood Salisbury gives us her advice for landlords looking at the costs involved in renting out a property. There are lots of costs associated with running a rental property that you might not have considered


hen you are working out whether a property makes a viable investment or not, it’s important to understand the running costs on an annual basis. It is interesting to consider that the costs of running a property valued at £50K will be similar to the costs of running a property valued at £250K and that there will be additional costs if a property is void/empty.


MORTGAGE As a landlord, you take on the financial risk of the tenant not

paying the rent. This means that you Most landlord insurance companies are legally contracted to pay the allow you to pay over 10 months, mortgage every month, whether spreading the cost. the tenant pays the rent or not, and REPAIRS even if the property is void/empty. These will depend on the LANDLORD standard of your property, INSURANCE how the tenant lives in it, and the This will be calculated on age of the property. the postcode of your property, the type of property, and the It could range from a blocked value of the property. It should toilet to a boiler repair. Landlords include buildings insurance for are advised to keep a “rainy day” freehold houses, and public liability fund for pay for repairs and insurance to protect you from third maintenance. party liability.


“landlords should keep back a fund to regularly up-date their rental properties and give them a facelift.”






Over time, rental properties, like all other houses, can develop issues such as a leaking

house & home | roof or needing a new central heating system. They will also typically need re-decorating every 5 to 8 years, depending on the age of the property and how it is lived in. Carpets will typically need to be replaced after 10 to 12 years as they may become very worn or stained beyond what can be cleaned. Again, landlords should keep back a fund to regularly up-date their rental properties and give them a facelift. This will ensure that the property remains desirable to tenants and can also achieve the maximum rental income.



These are typically payable as a percentage of the rent collected and will depend on the level of service you choose. This can range from “tenant find only” right up to “fully managed”. At Northwood, we have an extra level of service, which is our industry leading Guaranteed Rent service, which guarantees the rent whether the tenant pays or not, or whether the property is void or the tenant is in rental arrears. It gives landlords complete peace of mind that the rent will be paid every month.




Experienced landlords typically factor in one month’s void per annum as a safety margin. You should also factor in legal costs in getting a delinquent tenant removed. This can cost up to £1500 in legal fees, depending on the nature of the case and the tenancy agreement.



You will typically be required to pay an annual service charge and also ground rent. These costs can significantly bite into rental income from a leasehold flat, so worth crunching the numbers.

IF A RENTAL PROPERTY IS EMPTY: All the above costs will still be payable except for the lettings agent fees. Your insurance premium may increase slightly

if the property is empty for a sustained period. The landlord will also become liable for standing utilities. Depending on your local authority’s rules, you may also become liable for the council tax, although some LA’s reduce this on vacant properties. For those landlords with busy careers, managing the minutiae of a rental property might not be possible and if margins are tight, a void could wipe out any profit. This is why our Guaranteed Rent service is so popular and used by over 13,000 landlords across the U.K. For advice on how to move forward this new year pop into see us on 56 Castle Street, Salisbury or give us a call on 01722 330066. •

“Experienced landlords typically factor in one month’s void per annum as a safety margin.” You need to consider the costs of legal fees should you need to remove a tenant


Your property will need various certificates in order to be legally compliant. A Gas Safety certificate is needed on an annual basis and typically costs from £50 to £100. Your property will also need an EPC and there may be additional requirements such as landlord licensing fees, depending on your location and local authority’s regulations. THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE


| local news

Improving the wildflower grassland at Stonehenge A newly planted wildflower meadow promises to improve the landscape at the world heritage site.


he green fields surrounding Stonehenge will soon be even richer in wild flowers, thanks to the addition of seeds collected from Salisbury Plain. It is over 15 years since the start of one of Europe’s largest grassland restoration projects in the Stonehenge Landscape and National Trust’s tenant farmers are continuing to improve the quality of the land and diversity of the wild flowers.

‘There are a few areas looking a bit brown just now but they will soon recover,’ said Catherine Hosie, the National Trust’s Estate Manager for Stonehenge Landscape. The National Trust cares for over 800 hectares of land at Stonehenge, of which 242 hectares were included in the

grassland reversion project. The seed mix used brought back species such as cowslip, yellow rattle, pyramidal orchid, bird’s foot trefoil fairy flax and in some fields abundant sainfoin which turns the fields pink when in flower. This provides important food plants and nectar sources for insects including bees and butterflies such as the meadow brown and marbled white - and a profusion of skylarks. Now work is continuing to bring in more grassland areas and new plant species and create conditions suitable for a wider range of species, including some less common butterflies such as the Adonis blue and marsh fritillary. Five fields have been chosen covering a total of 22 hectares (54 acres); the equivalent of about 25 football pitches.

“The seed sown is a mixture of chalk grassland species harvested from Salisbury Plain and will help to improve the diversity of plant life at Stonehenge.” The fields around Stonehenge will soon be bursting with wildflower colour

‘It has been an ambitious project and one which is continuing. The work is all being done by our farm tenants; it wouldn’t be possible without them sharing our commitment to restoring the grassland at Stonehenge,’ added Catherine. The work has been carried out by the Trust’s tenants at Stonehenge funded through Agri-Environment Grants schemes working in conjunction with the Trust’s ambition for improving the grassland at Stonehenge to restore it to species rich chalk grassland in order to support more wildlife. The seed sown is a mixture of chalk grassland species harvested from Salisbury Plain, which is characteristic of Wiltshire chalk grassland, and will help to improve the diversity of plant life at Stonehenge. To get the right species mix the seeds are harvested at different times and a bespoke mix was created which will fill in the gaps needed at Stonehenge. Plants which will be introduced include small scabious, kidney vetch, devil’s-bit scabious, autumn gentian, betony and eyebright, with further species such as horseshoe vetch and harebell which establish better as small plug plants added by the National Trust rangers and volunteers to ensure a diverse a mixture as possible is created. •



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| puzzles







WIN A £10 NEXT VOUCHER! Email your answers to these trivia questions to by 15.02.18 to be in with a chance of winning a £10 Next Voucher. Good luck!

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| last word


Apocalypse Now...

have witnessed Armageddon. Not actually of course but what I think would be a very close approximation of said apocalypse... I have had my first experience of non-term time Saturday morning soft play. When our daughter was under school age we could pick and choose when we went… Usually as early as possible and on a school day so it would not be too busy. There would be a few kids there for her to play with and a few likeminded parents to have a chat with if you felt the need to be sociable. To go to soft play at 10.30am on a Saturday morning is like entering the seventh circle of Dante’s version of Hell. If you have never been

switch off, it’s like they treat it as cheap babysitting. Once they arrive the children are shooed into the play area as soon as possible and then it’s head down looking at the phone or tablet until it’s time to go. I’m not one of them, I’m constantly trying to make sure my 5 year old is okay and has not fallen over and broken a limb or is being picked on by the over exuberant kid karate kicking anything in his path (and who surely has to be over the 12 year old age limit?!) Trying to spot a continually moving little person in among literally hundreds of other continually moving little people is nigh on impossible. There are bodies everywhere moving up, down, forwards, backwards, diagonally some are moving in directions that

You may think I’m not that keen on soft play and you’re right but it’s not about me is it?! I’m entirely sure they weren’t targeting my demographic (50+ curmudgeonly white male) when they designed them. Rather it’s all about having a safe, weatherproof place for kids to let off some steam and run themselves ragged. And in that regard they are an absolute godsend - especially don’t seem physically possible. when you’ve a child with a birthday Then there’s the noise, it’s deafening. in January! So with that in mind we There are kids shouting and have booked a soft play birthday crying and laughing, it is utter party for our daughter. Now if I can mayhem. After about 5 minutes just source some combat gear for of desperately searching for your me, and a tracking device for her, I child with not even a glimpse might even be able to enjoy myself. you become convinced that they, somehow, must have escaped Phil Rockliffe the confines of the play area, even though there is only one door in and you have been standing by it since the beginning. There is only one thing for it….you have to head in yourself!! Shoes off and a few tentative steps into the melée and you become like a giant soldier

“Shoes off and a few tentative steps into the melée and you become like a giant soldier in a miniature battlefield, where everything slows down around you and you clamber through it all in a kind of trance.” to soft play and if you don’t have kids why would you?! It is a space, usually a warehouse or similar, with massive cages filled with indoor bouncy castles that children rush about in. There are slides and giant blocks and soft floors and ball pits all designed so that the kids can be let off the leash for an hour and you don’t have to worry about them. They are in an enclosed area, everything is soft …what could possibly go wrong? Quite a lot as it turns out, especially if you are me! Some parents go to these places and completely



in a miniature battlefield, where everything slows down around you and you clamber through it all in a kind of trance. Once you locate the child - who, of course, is having a great time and doesn’t understand what all the fuss is about - you then have to make the return journey, which is just as treacherous. You finally stumble out, red faced with hair all over the place, sweating profusely with a half eaten lollipop stuck to your forehead and you see someone from the school run looking as pristine as when they arrived… they’ve been messing with Facebook the whole time . . . probably!!

The South Wilts Magazine - Jan/Feb 2018  
The South Wilts Magazine - Jan/Feb 2018  

The South Wilts Magazine is a local lifestyle title for Salisbury and its surrounds