Page 1

MAY/JUNE 2018 • ISSUE 53

FREE

The

South Wilts magazine

LARMER TREE THE MUCH LOVED FESTIVAL RETURNS

MOROCCO EXPLORING ESSAOUIRA & MARRAKECH

Love Food Hate Waste Recipes + LOCAL LISTINGS SMART HOMES SALISBURY MITSUBISHI & MUCH MORE

FLOWER POWER WE PREVIEW THE RHS CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW

FOOD & DRINK // INTERVIEWS // PROPERTY // LISTINGS // COMMENT


contents Published by Wired Publishing Editor Lisa Rockliffe Contributors Craig Gates-Mutton, Phil Rockliffe, Brian Donaldson, Andy Diffey Advertising Enquiries Lisa Rockliffe e: lisa@wired-publishing.co.uk t: 01225 807775 General Enquiries e: info@wired-publishing.co.uk t: 01225 807775 www.wired-publishing.co.uk 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. Front Cover: Leaf Spirit by Simon Gudgeon from RHS Chelsea Flower Show 2017 © Lisa Rockliffe

May/June 2018 // issue 53

A

s our front cover shot suggests, over the past few weeks we’ve been getting rather excited by gardens. If it were not joyful enough that the soil has warmed up and our plants are starting to grow again, but coming up over the coming weeks is the RHS Chelsea Flower Show - the world’s most prestigious flower show and probably the highlight of the gardening calendar. We preview what to expect at this year’s event on p20. For those of you not of a horticultural persuasion, there is still much to look forward to. With Father’s Day on the horizon you could do a lot worse than go to p10 and see about a falconry experience. Alternatively, a trip over to Bush Farm Bison Centre could be just the thing for a lovely family day out. Last, but by no means least, we preview the return of the much loved Larmer Tree Festival. See who’s on the bill this year by heading to p8. Plus we’ve an article on SMART homes and a feature on the new Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross. That and all your usual favourites. All you need do is turn the page and get stuck in. Enjoy!

4

18

20

Lisa Rockliffe, Editor

Follow us on Twitter... @wiredpublishing Read online... www.southwiltsmag.co.uk

in this issue... LOCAL LISTINGS What’s on in May/June

4

LOCAL NEWS Larmer Tree Festival Forest Falconry Bush Farm Bison Centre

8 10 10

FOOD & DRINK Summer dining at Howard’s House 12 Love Food Hate Waste Recipes 14 HOMES & GARDENS Lakeside Garden Centre SMART homes

FEATURES The Magic of Morocco Chelsea Flower Show

18 20

MOTORING The new Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

26

COMPETITIONS & PUZZLES Quiz, wordsearch & sudoku Win tickets to Yeovilton Air Day!

28 29

COMMENT The Last Word

30

22 24 THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

3


| events

local

listings MAY & JUNE

CITY HALL

Malthouse Lane, Salisbury, SP2 7TU Box Office: 01722 434434 cityhallsalisbury.co.uk For full listings go to the website. REMEMBERING FRED 24 May, 7.30pm Tickets: from £29.50 Remembering Fred are returning in 2018 and Aljaz and Janette are back with new songs, new dances and a whole new look. THAT’LL BE THE DAY 25 May, 7.30pm Tickets: £24 The UK’s premier Rock & Roll production returns with another brand new show. AN AUDIENCE WITH IAN WAITE AND OTI MABUSE 2 June, 7.30pm Tickets: from £27 The Strictly Come Dancing pros, Ian & Oti, will perform a night of Latin and Ballroom numbers designed to dazzle and wow you. BIG GIRLS DONT CRY 16 June, 7.30pm Tickets: £25.50 Step back in time, to the era of romance and experience the iconic sounds of Frankie Valli & The Four Seasons authentically recreated by a phenomenal cast and live band.

4

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

THE CARPENTERS STORY 27 June, 7.30pm Tickets: from £22 This highly acclaimed production continues to captivate audiences across the UK with its spectacular re-creation of the classic songbook that made The Carpenters legendary. RHYTHM OF THE DANCE 28 June, 7.30pm Tickets: £24 This stunning Irish spectacular is a fully live show that celebrates Irish culture through music and dance,

Rhythm of the Dance, Salisbury Playhouse

featuring world champion dancers and a traditional Irish band. THE MAGIC OF MOTOWN 29 June, 8pm Tickets: £27 Music fans are invited to the biggest party of the year as the unstoppable Magic of Motown show steams into town.

SALISBURY PLAYHOUSE Malthouse Lane, Salisbury SP2 7RA Box Office: 01722 320333 salisburyplayhouse.com For full listings go to the website.

MOONFLEET Until 5 May, various times Tickets: £27 (Concs £11.50) Haunted by the ghost of the marauding pirate, Blackbeard, Moonfleet is a village of intrigue and drama where shadowy smugglers lurk. Against this backdrop, young

Moonfleet, Salisbury Playhouse

Send your listings to info@wired-publishing.co.uk


• EXTENSIONS & CONVERSIONS • PROPERTY REFURBISHMENT & MAINTENANCE • RENOVATIONS • NEW BUILDS • KITCHENS & BATHROOMS

_______________ “For all your building requirements”

_______________ t: 01747 820422 e: info@pfparsons.co.uk w: www.pfparsons.co.uk Unit 1, Wylye Road, Hindon, Salisbury SP3 6ER

South Wilts ADVERTISE WITH US IN 2018 INTRODUCTORY & SERIES DISCOUNTS AVAILABLE

Call Andy today on � 01225 807775 southwiltsmag.co.uk

YOUR PRIDE IS OUR PASSION

MOTORCYCLES

NEW & USED SALES Service & Repairs | All Makes & Parts

SALISBURY’S INDEPENDENT MOTORCYCLE SPECIALIST

01722 337999 | 07767 364833

www.sjsmotorcycles.co.uk Unit 3, Norton Enterprise Park, Whittle Road, Churchfields Ind Est, Salisbury SP2 7YS


| events stuff to the Americans, in an attempt to bribe them into supporting the British war effort.

SALISBURY MUSEUM 65 The Close, Salisbury SP1 2EN Tel: 01722 332151 salisburymuseum.org.uk Normal admission charges apply unless stated

NT Live: Macbeth, Salisbury Arts Centre

orphan John Trenchard dreams of Blackbeard’s treasure and the wealth and happiness it could bring. MACBETH 10 - 12 May, 7.30pm Tickets: from £11.50 Multi award-winning Mark Bruce Company presents a striking dance theatre adaptation of Shakespeare’s Macbeth. CRIMES UNDER THE SUN 10 – 12 May, various times Tickets: £13.50 Inspired by Agatha Christie, Hitchcock and film noir, you are invited on an hilarious but murderous trip to a classic English Riviera retreat.

here’s one of P G Wodehouse’s finest. DISGUSTING SONGS FOR REVOLTING CHILDREN 2 June, 11am & 2pm Tickets: £9 Jay Foreman provides a devilishly cheeky hour of songs, poems and comedy for children of all ages in this family-friendly show which regularly sells out at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. WHISKY GALORE 26 – 30 June, various times Tickets: from £12 The islanders of Great and Little Todday are dismayed to find their whisky supply dwindling as the UK government diverts the precious

SALISBURY SNAPPED Until 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 Until 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 Until 12 May Normal admission charges apply. The Cave of Sounds is an interactive installation featuring up to eight original electronic musical instruments.

STACEY KENT 16 May, 7.30pm Tickets: £23 International jazz singer Stacey Kent in concert for one special evening, featuring music from her latest album I Know I Dream. LOVE ON THE LINKS 31 May – 23 June, various times Tickets: from £11 I say, those splendid chaps at Salisbury Playhouse have come up with some spiffing entertainment for those long summer evenings –

6

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

Stacey Kent, Salisbury Playhouse

Send your listings to info@wired-publishing.co.uk


events |

SALISBURY ARTS CENTRE

Bedwin Street, Salisbury, SP1 3UT Box Office: 01722 321744 salisburyartscentre.co.uk A SONG TO SING 10, 11 & 12 May, various times Tickets: £15 This showcasing of songs will include treasured selections from Les Miserable, Miss Saigon, Sunset Boulevard, Chicago, Cats, West Side Story, Sister Act, Hairspray, Jekyll and Hyde, Pirates of Penzance and many more. NT LIVE: MACBETH 16 May, 7pm Tickets: £16 (Concs £14) The ruined aftermath of a bloody civil war. Ruthlessly fighting to survive, the Macbeths are propelled towards the crown by forces of elemental darkness. THE DEVIL’S VIOLIN: ‘STOLEN’ 17 May, 8pm Tickets: £12 (Concs £10) Daniel Morden transports you to the Land of No Return, his storytelling enhanced by the hypnotic string accompaniment. SALISBURY LIVE 2018 19 May, 5pm – 11pm FREE-ticket required Featuring All Floyd, Lady Winwoods Maggot, Gambling Hearts, Pugwall, Jess Robyn & Evolution Pop Choir SALISBURY LIVE: YOUTH MUSIC EVENT 1 June, 6pm FREE-ticket required The evening will showcase some fantastic local talent including acoustic artists, vocal choirs, dance troops and bands. ROBIN INCE: PRAGMATIC INSANITY 8 June, 8pm Tickets: £15 (Concs £14)

The star of The Infinite Monkey Cage returns with his first new solo show for three years. BEEREX 15 - 16 June, various times Tickets: from £10 per session Music, merriment and a selection of over 50 of the finest real ales and ciders. THE BOOK OF GENESIS 23 June, 8pm Tickets: £17 (Concs £15) Don’t miss this opportunity to celebrate the early songs of the influential progressive rock band Genesis.

SHAFTESBURY ARTS CENTRE

13 Bell Street, Shaftesbury SP7 8AR Box Office: 01747 854321 shaftesburyartscentre.org.uk For full listings go to the website. MADDY PRIOR WITH HANNAH JAMES & GILES LEWIN 5 May, 7.30pm Tickets: £18 (Concs £15) Over the course of her remarkable career, Maddy Prior has made it her mission to work with some of the most exceptional musicians in the world and this will be no exception. PETER KNIGHT’S GIGSPANNER 25 May, 7.30pm Tickets: £15 (Concs £12.50) The captivating nature of their set stems not only from their creative ability and vision, but the eclectic nature of the material chosen. JO PHILBY 8 June, 7.30pm Tickets: £10 (Concs £9) With a soulful & expressive vocal and the ability to transmit emotion into each word Jo gathers you up for a totally absorbing musical journey, utilising textures of folk, roots and country to tell her stories of the sea and island life.

Send your listings to info@wired-publishing.co.uk

SHAFTESBURY FRINGE 2018 29, 30 June & 1 July, various times Please see website for ticket prices The Arts Centre is once again one of the venues hosting events for this year’s Fringe. Be prepared to experience some fabulous comedy, poetry & music.

SALISBURY TRUST FOR THE HOMELESS The Salvation Army Church, 16 Salt Lane, Salisbury, SP1 1EE Tel: 01722 504295

Afternoon shows bristling with music, laughter, songs and facts and tea and cake. THE SEASIDE 2 May, 2.45pm Tickets: £5 Alan Bennett, postcards, piers, Rudyard Kipling, lighthouses, oysters, seaweed, Spike Milligan, King Canute, smugglers, landladies & more. POISONED CHOCOLATES, KESWICK & BLACKMAIL 13 June, 2.45pm Tickets: £5 Brighton doctor, a stalker, contaminated baby food, cash machines, body in lake, an airline pilot, Reg Varney, Earlswood Asylum & more.

OTHERS THE ATHENAEUM SINGERS-ELIJAH(MENDELSSOHN) The Minster Church of St Denys, Warminster BA12 8PQ 2 June, 7pm Tickets: £15 The biblical story of Elijah is portrayed in dramatic form with soloists taking the roles of the main characters with the choir supporting them in chorus pieces. athenaeumsingers.com THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

7


| local news

Larmer Tree returns!

Larmer Tree Festival, the quintessential summer party set in the fanciest of pleasure gardens, is back rom 19-22 July. festival that audiences have grown to know and love remain present and correct too. Larmer Tree is proud to have been awarded the UK Festival Awards for ‘Best Family Festival’ and ‘Best Toilets’ by festival-goers for the coolest, cleanest loos. They’re also thrilled to have been named the ‘Small Festival of the Year 2015’ by NOEA (National Outdoor Events Association).

A

Larmer Tree was named Small Festival of the Year in 2015

fter a year-long hiatus Larmer Tree Festival is back for its 27th year. This event has cemented itself as one of the area’s most loved and long standing events thanks to the combination of its breathtaking location, outstanding line ups and breadth of things to do. Larmer Tree is the quintessential summer party. Intimate and eccentric, and remaining small by choice, they offer a unique party experience, encouraging a genuine festival community. The

“This year’s headline acts include music from First Aid Kit, Jake Bugg and Public Service Broadcasting.” festival is independent with no outside forces influencing decisions, leaving organisers free to develop an extraordinary full of fun stuff to delight, entertain and inspire.

8

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

Tier 2 weekend tickets are still avaliable priced £179 per person. 11-17 year old weekend tickets cot £112 and under 10s go free. Day tickets are available too. Book your spot online now!

For three days and four joyful nights the gardens transform into a sensory wonderland, ensuring • larmertreefestival.co.uk adventure at every turn. Presenting top-notch local, national and international artists in music, outdoor theatre, live performances, art, comedy and more. This year you can blissfully retreat to the new Larmer Spa, and there’s international street eats guaranteed to fill your belly and nourish the soul. This year’s headline acts include music from First Aid Kit, Jake Bugg and Public Service Broadcasting. Comedians include Sara Pascoe, Mark Watson and Dane Baptiste. Kids will also love the shenanigans of Dan the Hat and Makeshift Ensemble – to name but a few! The website has the full line up of artists, workshops and experiences on offer. There are some newly created spaces for you to check out, whilst all the original essence of the


| local news

The ultimate countryside experience

T

here is something magical about Birds of Prey. Their size, grace, power and speed are a bewitching combination that is awesome to behold at close quarters. For the closest view of all, Forest Falconry offers spectacular falconry experience days and tuition in a stunning location. You’ll find them in the New Forest on the border of Hampshire and Wiltshire. Experience the thrill of flying and hunting with some of nature’s most beautiful birds of prey in Forest Falconry’s magnificent 16-acre woodland site. The exclusive site is not open to the public and can be explored by six visitors at any one time, adding to the unique experience of the day in the New Forest.

During the half/full day’s experience, visitors have the opportunity to take part in various hands-on activities, including handling, training and hunting (season dependant) including owls, hawks, falcons and golden eagles – creating everlasting memories.

as a treat and can be purchased online and emailed directly to you! For further information and to book please visit the website. • forestfalconry.com You can buy half or full day experiences

Forest Falconry is also the home to a breeding centre for birds of prey. Gift vouchers are available for the half and full day experiences and

“For the closest view of all, Forest Falconry offers spectacular falconry experience days and tuition in a stunning location” are ideal presents for birthdays, anniversaries, Father’s Day or simply

Enjoy a family day out at Bush Farm

S

ee bison, elk, rheas and guanacos at Bush Farm Bison Centre. Bush Farm is a working farm tucked away at the southern end of the little village of West Knoyle (near Mere), just over a mile from the A303.

that surrounds you. There are also woodland camp pitches with fire pits to enjoy too. The Bison Centre and Farm is open from 10am - 5pm Friday to Sunday and bank holidays from April until the end of September. Plus there is also the 24th Annual

Pow Wow to look forward to on 7 & 8th July, with music, drums, stalls and great fun to be had. For further details go to the website or email info@ bisonfarm.co.uk. • bisonfarm.co.uk

As well as seeing the beautiful animals it is also a lovely venue for a summer walk that takes the visitor through the tree gardens. There is a barn for undercover space to play with bikes, table tennis and basketball and a play park with a climbing frame and a tyre swing – great for letting youngsters blow off steam. There are some 30 acres of mature oak woods with mown paths, secret gardens and wide grassy clearings for you to wander or just sit in and enjoy glimpses of the wonderful wildlife

10

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

Bush Farm has 30 acres of mature oak woods to explore as well as animals to see


FALCONRY E X P E R I E N C E D AY S

An unforgettable experience handling & flying Eagles, Hawks, Falcons & Owls

GIFT VOUCHERS AVAILABLE

THE ULTIMATE FATHER’S DAY GIFT

RE

O

T

BIS

Saving stray & unwanted dogs since 1958

SH FA

RM

Pine Ridge Dog Sanctuary

BU

visit www.forestfalconry.com to book or call 01794 323310 for any other enquiries

N CEN

60

• 1958 - 2018 • th

A N N I V E R S A RY

Pine Ridge Dog Sanctuary is a small independent animal rescue organisation. We are a non-destruction sanctuary for abandoned and unwanted dogs. Our dogs are all vet checked, vaccinated, wormed, neutered and chipped, and looking for loving new homes Open Daily 10:00 - 12:15 & 14:00 - 16:15

Pine Ridge Dog Sanctuary, Priory Rd, Ascot, Berks SL5 8RJ

01344 882689 | pineridgedogs@yahoo.co.uk Registered Charity Number 256728

Native American Pow Wow 7 & 8 July Enjoy a day out at Bush Farm and see elk, guanaco, rhea and chipmunks as well as the bison! Wander around 30 acres of oak woodlands with picnic & play areas and woodland camp pitches with fire pits. REFRESHMENTS & LIGHT MEALS AVAILABLE West Knoyle,Wiltshire BA12 6AE 01747 830263 | www.bisonfarm.co.uk Open until end of September Wednesday-Sunday & Bank Holidays, 10am-5pm


| food & drink

Seasonal treats from Howard’s House

Enjoy the cherry-pick of nature’s larder at Howard’s House Hotel this summer.

W

hen head chef Andy says the food at Howard’s House is fresh, local and seasonal, he really means it. His ‘field to fork’ philosophy means that every menu is carefully designed to showcase the finest flavours of each particular

“His ‘field to fork’ philosophy means that every menu is carefully designed to showcase the finest flavours of each particular season.”

Howard’s House is a beautiful location for summer dining

cucamelons and purple tomatillos. And if you’re taking a stroll through the kitchen gardens, don’t forget to say hello to the chickens! If your eggs or vegetables taste fresh, that’s because they’re just picked, selected in their prime by the kitchen team. What the hotel can’t can’t grow, they source locally, working with only the best suppliers of fish, meat, dairy and other fresh ingredients.

Andy Britton is an award-winning chef who honed his skills under culinary greats such as Michael season. He has worked closely with Caines and Albert Roux. Since joining the garden team to nurture an the team at Howard’s House in 2017, impressive variety of produce this he’s been enjoying rave reviews for summer - expect all the traditional his excellent cooking, offering a wide veg (including six varieties of carrot!) range of menus for every appetite along with some lesser known from tasty light lunches to a la carte garden delights such as kohl rabi, and tasting menus.

12

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

DIARY DATES

3 May - Andy’s Dining Club Put your experience in Andy’s expert hands and indulge in a surprise seven course tasting menu in the hotel’s beautiful coach house. £80 per person (£120 to include matching wines). 16 June: A Summer Lunch Relax with drinks, canapes, a seasonal feast from the grill, and live music from award-winning folk/country duo Hummingbird. £35 per person. The restaurant at Howard’s House, which you’ll find at Teffont Evias near Salisbury, is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day. Afternoon tea is also available by prior booking – call 01722 716392 to make a reservation. • howardshousehotel.co.uk


GREAT VALUE LIGHT LUNCH MENU

2 COURSES JUST £12.45! AVAILABLE TUESDAY TO FRIDAY.

Tom & Zara welcome you to The White Hart. We are situated in the heart of Bishopstone, near Salisbury, in a traditional 18th century family pub & restaurant. We have a lovely large beer garden and children’s play area. There is a large, easy access, car park and plenty of room for larger dining parties, with set menus available on request. We are very proud of our locally sourced delicious homemade food; daily fish specials and wide choice of menus that aim to cater for everyone. • FRESHLY COOKED FOOD • DAILY SPECIALS • FAMILY FRIENDLY • LARGE GARDEN • CHILDREN’S PLAY AREA • REAL ALES • CAR PARK thewhitehart.bishopstone@gmail.com • 01722 780244 Butts Lane, Bishopstone, Salisbury SP5 4AA

f


| recipes

waste not

Want Not This month help to reduce your food waste by using up any leftovers in your fridge and pantry. These recipes come from the Love Food Hate Waste campaign.

LEFTOVER POTATO HASH

Ingredients 1 large onion, chopped 1 clove of garlic, chopped 3 or 4 slices unsmoked bacon, roughly chopped 6 - 8 leftover roast potatoes, cut into cubes 200g of leftover cooked veg (kale,

14

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

green beans, red peppers) 75g smoked cheddar, grated olive oil salt & pepper to season 2 or 3 large free-range eggs

Method Preheat your oven to 190˚C / 170˚C fan. Heat a little olive oil in an an ovenproof skillet or pan on medium heat. Add the onions and allow to cook for a couple of minutes, before adding the garlic and bacon. Fry for a couple of minutes allowing the bacon to

Serves 4

start to crisp up, before adding the potatoes. Turn up the heat a little and cook for a couple of minutes. Add the cooked veg, season and cook for a few more minutes. Add the grated cheese and mix through before removing from the heat. Make sure the hash is spread evenly across the base of the pan. Crack the eggs on top of the dish before transferring to a the oven and cook for 8 minutes, or until the egg whites have set. Serve immediately!

The perfect brunch dish to use up leftover roast potatoes and cooked veg! Try out different flavour combinations or make it vegetarian by eliminating the bacon and using a vegetarian cheese.


recipes |

SAVOURY FRENCH TOAST Serves 2

Ingredients Two slices of thick-cut bread (if it’s slightly stale, even better!) 3 eggs A dash of milk Salt & pepper A handful of chopped chives A tablespoon of butter

GREEK-STYLE LAMB, SPINACH & FETA PIE Serves 6

This fantastic dish makes the best of leftover roast lamb, takes its inspiration from Greek cuisine’s aromatic flavours and uses filo pastry. Any leftover pastry can be wrapped up in cling film and frozen to use another time. Feel free to experiment with different dried or fresh herbs that you might have in the kitchen. Ingredients 250g pack filo pastry 75g butter (melted) 200g roast leg of lamb, finely chopped 1 large or 2 small onions, chopped 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped 200g spinach leaves 150g Feta cheese, crumbled 1 tsp dried mint 1 tsp dried oregano 4 tbsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley zest of 1 lemon olive oil salt and pepper to season

Method Preheat your oven to 180oC / 160oC fan. Heat a little olive oil in a large non-stick pan on medium heat. Add the onions and soften for a few

minutes, before adding the garlic, oregano and mint. Fry on a low/ medium heat for 2 minutes to allow the onion to soften. Add the pieces of chopped lamb, and then season well with salt and pepper. Add the spinach in batches, allowing it to wilt slowly. Finish with the fresh parsley and lemon zest. Stir well and then remove from heat and set aside. Layer 2 sheets of pastry into an ovenproof dish, allowing the edges to fall over the sides. Using a pastry brush, brush all around the base and sides with melted butter. Repeat the process two times, so that you have 6 layers of pastry in total.

Method Beat the eggs in a bowl, add a dash of milk and the salt and pepper. Transfer to a shallow dish or plate. Meanwhile, heat a frying pan on a medium to high heat and add the butter. When the butter is starting to brown, add the eggy bread to the pan and fry for a couple of minutes or until the underside turns golden brown. Flip with a spatula and do the same on the other side. Transfer to a serving plate, and while the toast is still hot, grate over some cheese and allow to melt slightly. Add a handful of chopped chives and serve immediately. For more information, inspiration and recipes see the Love Food Hate Waste website. • lovefoodhatewaste.com.

Fill with the lamb and spinach mixture, and then sprinkle the crumbled Feta across the top. Bring the sides in and brush the top of the pastry with melted butter. Cook in the oven for 45 minutes - 1 hour, until the Feta is melted and the pastry is golden. Serve this tasty dish with a fresh tomato salad. THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

15


| travel Beautiful slippers and shoes in the souks of Marrakech

16

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE


travel |

THE MAGIC OF

MOROCCO This month KATIE THOMSON explores two cities in Morocco, Essaouira and Marrakech.

H

ow amazing it is that after only three hours on a plane, one can arrive in a country as beguiling, exhilarating and so far from the familiar as Morocco. This is a country famed for its mazes of souks, beautiful coastlines and dramatic scenery, and we were hoping to take in as much of it as possible in only 6 days. When planning a visit to Morocco, most people swarm straight to the buzzing souks of Marrakech or the beaches of Agadir, leaving the wonders of Essaouira undiscovered. Immensely popular with French holidaymakers, this Bohemian seaside resort has much more to offer than the sum of its parts. Culture lovers can still get their taste of the medina, visiting some of the artisanal craftsmen who have plied their trade here for hundreds of years. There are lots of interesting sights to enjoy here including the fishing port with its whitewashed walls and cerulean blue boats, and the old port with its sea battered fortress walls. The constant breeze, which makes sunbathing here so pleasurable, is amplified on

the coast, where watersports like windsurfing and paddle boarding are enduringly popular. Our accommodation in Essaouira was the lovely Le Jardin des Douars. The hotel, located about 20 minutes from the centre of the town, is an oasis of tranquility, and is made up of a collection of traditionally built buildings, connected with winding paths of beautiful greenery and flowers. The vibe here is chilled, and deliberately so, it is a place to come and switch off. The onsite spa continues this quest for wellbeing, with a selection of classic Moroccan treatments on offer. We opted for the black salt hammam, a soothing yet uplifting treatment that warmed us to the bone and purified the skin. The kitchen takes inspiration from classical French, Moroccan staples and, most impressively, seasonal vegetables direct from their garden. Chef Joseph makes the most of the abundant produce grown in the kitchen garden to create perfect tagines, melt-in-the-mouth lamb shanks, fresh seafood and decadent puddings.

Whilst it’s difficult to tear yourself away from the pool, a trip into Essaouira is certainly worthwhile. It’s a great place to get used to haggling and to soak up a culture so different from our own. Spend the day and really walk the streets and when you get tired of shuffling from stall to stall, head up to one of the many rooftop cafés and restaurants to take in the panoramic sea views and enjoy the cool breeze. There are loads of fab foodie spots we particularly liked Taros Café with its great views and lively atmosphere. After some relaxation, the madness of Marrakech was beckoning. We headed to the coach station ready for our three hour return journey. The coach is a really convenient way to hop between cities and a great chance to experience the undulating terrain and pockets of civilisation in the vastness of the Moroccan landscape. Taros Café offers great views and a lively atmostphere

“Spend the day and really walk the streets and when you get tired of shuffling from stall to stall, head up to one of the many rooftop cafés and restaurants to soak in the panoramic sea views and enjoy the cool breeze.” THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

17


| travel You can’t visit Marrakech and not visit the souks

The Almaha Hotel is one of those secret jewels tucked away in the myriad of streets in Marrakech’s Kasbah, complete with Moroccan lanterns and a majestic courtyard. The traditional water pool was surrounded by colonnades draped in white chiffon, leaving the walkways light and airy, with high ceilings dotted by large lanterns. By night, this scene transforms, with soft lighting and floating candles in the water. The Almaha is a hotel of great beauty and little wonders, exquisitely decorated and carefully curated, with a beautiful blend of traditional Moroccan elements with a strong contemporary design. Marrakech is of course famed for its labyrinthine souks, where you can find some truly amazing items, handcrafted by local artisans. But there is a lot more to the city than the

shopping and the bustling madness of the Djemma El Fna main square. But there is a lot more to the city than the shopping and the bustling madness of the Jemaa el-Fnaa main square. It is sometimes easy to forget that Marrakech is an Islamic city and one that is also considered to be a holy pilgrimage site. The Qur’an was traditionally taught at a madrassa (religious school) and a spectacular remnant of this tradition is the Madrassa Ben Youssef. It is one of the most exquisite examples of Moorish architecture in the world, reminiscent of the Alhambra in Granada or the Alcázar in Seville and its intricate carvings and dazzling mosaics are world-renowned. As well as being very religious, Marrakech is an historic city, and an excellent place to experience this is the ruined El Badi Palace where you can learn about its amazing history and Saadi Dynasty. If you have never visited Morocco, it is a country that can offer the traveller so many experiences - wonderful hospitality, true relaxation, a glimpse into tribal life, the bustle of city life and centuries of history. That and some much needed sun, what more are you looking for?!

TRAVELLER’S TIPS Fly with RyanAir from London Stansted (STN) to Marrakech (RAK) from around £200 return in May. Spring is a lovely time to visit, with temperatures in the mid to high 20s. High summer is very hot, but if you don’t mind it a little cooler, it’s a decent year round destination. We got a return coach between Marrakech and Essaouria. This is extremely comfortable, convenient and cheap - it is run by Supratours and tickets can be purchased in advance or on the day from the offices in each area. You can only by them in person, so it is worth buying your return at the same time as your outbound ticket. Tickets are about £10 each way - and the journey takes 2-3 hours. Try to take probiotics for a month before you go - it can help stop tummy troubles developing. When you are there, avoid ice in your drink and uncooked vegetables that may have been washed in tap water. Arabic might be beyond many of us, but some conversational French will get you a lot further than English and locals will appreciate the effort. We all know you have to haggle in the souks, some people recommend starting at half the price the shop owner quotes. I think that is still too high. A good deal is generally about a third of the price they start with. If there are certain items you want, do your research before and get a gauge of what you should pay. The bottom line? If you love it, just buy it - you’ll forget that you overpaid by £10 and you’ll have a memento to treasure forever.

The central patio at Almaha Marrakech

18

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

• jardindesdouars.com • al-maha.com


TOWPATH TRAIL HIRE CENTRE BRADFORD ON AVON

est 1990

The Original Bike and Canoe Hire on the Kennet & Avon Canal • Top quality, recreational mountain bikes

• Helmet / life jacket hire included free of charge

• Kids bikes, trailers & child seats available

• Barista coffees, milkshakes, Winstone’s ice cream, cold drinks & snacks available

• E-Bike hire also available

• Dry barrels available to • Canadian canoes fitted with keep your kit dry 4 seats (suitable for 2 adults • Open 7 days a week & 2 children or 3 adults)

EAT

PEDAL/PADDLE

SLEEP

01225 868068

01225 867187

01225 865049

www.thelockinn.co.uk

www.towpathtrail.co.uk www.widbrookbarns.co.uk

SHOP

www.ttcycles.co.uk

01225 867187

01225 867187 • www.towpathtrail.co.uk • Frome Road, Bradford on Avon BA15 1LE


| gardens

Chelsea Flower Show The RHS Chelsea Flower Show is returning from 22 – 26 May at the Royal Hospital Chelsea in London.

T

he most prestigious flower show in the world will this year feature a mix of returning favourites, new designers, and some exciting changes.

THE SHOW GARDENS

10 Show Gardens will fill Main Avenue this year, where tradition and romance will contrast with contemporary and urban design. You’ll see the return of multi-award winning designer Sarah Price after a five year absence. Sarah’s garden will be primarily made up of water, planting and earth to represent a romanticised Mediterranean haven that celebrates the expressive and sensual language of colour and texture, light and shadow.

20

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

Tom Massey will make his debut at Chelsea this year as designer of The Lemon Tree Trust Garden, which emulates a garden used by a community of refugees displaced in Domiz camp, Northern Iraq. It

will be the first garden in the show’s 105 year history to be designed with the input of refugees and will show the importance of gardens and gardening to the thousands of displaced people trying to rebuild Monty Don will be anchoring the BBC coverage of the show


gardens | Last year’s garden by designer Kazuyuki Ishihara

Kate Gould will be going for her fifth gold medal with The West End Secret Garden – a modern interpretation of the gardens and architecture of London’s West End. Pearlfisher’s Garden - by conceptual designer John Warland - celebrates the beauty of the world’s largest garden found beneath our oceans and highlights the devastating impact plastic waste is having on our eco systems.

Chelsea exhibiting artists and sculptors are among the finest in the world

The Seedlip Garden, designed by Catherine McDonald, is a celebration of the humble pea, while former RHS Young Designer, Tony Woods, uses sculpture, materials and planting in the environmentally conscious Urban Flow garden to demonstrate how best to utilise green spaces.

ARTISAN GARDENS

The popular Artisan Gardens aim to revitalise traditional materials and methods with new design approaches. Multi gold medal winning designer, Kazuyuki Ishihara, is creating a garden inspired by O-mo-te-na-shi no NIWA, a Japanese concept of hospitality. Sarah Eberle also returns with a garden that celebrates India’s love of cricket. their lives with the support of the Lemon Tree Trust. Other highlights in this category include award-winning designer Jo Thompson’s The Wedgwood Garden, and last year’s People’s Choice winner, Chris Beardshaw, designing a garden which celebrates the company’s partnership with the NSPCC.

SPACE TO GROW

Space to Grow is a new category at Chelsea this year. It will feature smaller gardens offering original ideas, trends and take home messages that will inspire visitors to transform their outdoor spaces and learn about the benefits growing can bring.

Be inspired by the wonderful planting combinations

“The Great Pavilion is a plant lover’s paradise, and this year it will be home to over 90 exhibits from the world’s best nurseries” Peter Beale’s Roses will mark their 50th anniversary with the launch of a new rose, while NAFAS will serve up a floral feast with an imaginative flower and foliage display depicting the four seasons.

Kate Savill and Tamara Bridge have designed The Warner Edwards Garden, a design that reimagines the landscape and planting of the gin distillery’s home in Northamptonshire, whilst Paul Hervey-Brookes’ garden Hillier Nurseries, one of the most will depict the importance of successful exhibitors at RHS Chelsea, wellbeing in the Nordic way of life. will be working with Sarah Eberle on a walk through garden made THE GREAT PAVILION up of smaller areas, with take home The heart of the Chelsea Flower inspiration. Show, the Great Pavilion is a plant lover’s paradise, and this year it will There are a limited number of tickets be home to over 90 exhibits from the to the show still available. To book call world’s best nurseries, growers and 0844 338 7546 or visit the website. If you florists. D’Arcy & Everest will celebrate aren’t able to make it, watch coverage 25 years of exhibiting at the show, on BBC TV throughout show week. while Hampshire Carnivorous Plants • rhs.org.uk/chelsea aim for their 20th gold in 20 years. THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

21


| gardens

Lakeside Garden Centre With a fantastic selection of plants, stunning setting and great range of furniture and sundries, Lakeside is a real treat for local gardeners...

W

ith the terribly cold start to spring it seemed like better weather might never arrive. Thankfully though the growing season is now in full swing and that means a busy few weeks at garden centres everywhere. One that promises both expertise and value is Lakeside Garden Centre, part of a family owned business that has been serving gardeners in the west of England for over forty years. Lakeside is based at Crockerton Shopping Centre on the outskirts of Warminster. A large site, they have Lakeside has a beautiful location with a coffee shop that makes the most of it

“if you’re looking forward to a spot of al fresco dining be sure to look for their selection of charcoal and gas Weber barbecues” everything you could need for your garden and a beautiful setting to help make a day of it too. As the name suggests, Lakeside Garden Centre is based on the water’s edge, and no visit is complete without a stroll around the lake and a chance to meet the ducks and geese that have made their home there. The café provides a stunning spot from which to enjoy a cup of freshly brewed coffee and slice of homemade cake. This popular on-site venue offers other homemade treats too, plus soups, light bites and a full range of refreshments to cater for whatever the weather may bring! Back in the garden centre, you can get summer bedding, trees, shrubs and, for the veg plot, a selection of fruit and

22

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

vegetable plants including tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers, squash and even aubergine. If you prefer there is also a great range of seeds from Sutton Seeds and Thompson & Morgan. If it’s garden furniture you need, see their new season range of outdoor furniture. And if you’re looking forward to a spot of al fresco dining be sure to look for their selection of charcoal and gas Weber barbecues - it’s starting to seem like summer already! Lakeside is situated on the A350 on the edge of the Longleat Estate. To find out more call 01985 217413. The centre is open Monday to Saturday 8.30am-5.30pm and on Sundays from 10.30am-4.30pm. • fonthill-lakeside.com


| house & home

Making a SMART choice MARYAM CALVERT at Northwood Salisbury looks at how the latest SMART technology is changing how we live.

W

e live in an interconnected world – most of us own a smart phone and can access all sorts of information from the palm of our hands. We can carry out a range of everyday tasks on them, including checking in with family and friends on social media, organising our calendar and even operating the heating at home. SMART homes take advantage of today’s technology to make our lives easier and more efficient. In some cases, like controlling your heating and lights, it will even save you money. If the idea of a SMART home has you boggled, the good news is it’s relatively easy to introduce as much or as little technology to your home as you feel comfortable with. Make your home SMART with a device like this Amazon Echo Dot, £49.99

24

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

AN INTRODUCTION TO A SMART HOME

systems use GPS technology, so no more fretting if you are delayed in a traffic jam, set it to warm the house when you’re within 2 miles of home, 5 GREAT BENEFITS OF of course this can be overridden by SMART HOME TECHNOLOGY utilising the associated app. There are a few SMART energy devices on the Comfort You can organise your market, you may find this guide from home electronics just how you Tech Advisor useful. want. That can mean anything from setting your alarm via a device like Security SMART technology is Amazon’s Echo so that it plays your also helping to improve home “Wake Up” playlist, to controlling the security. You can now get alarm and lighting and heating in your home. CCTV systems connected to your Smart phone. These systems will Lowering Costs When used for send you alerts and some will even controlling your heating. You can connect to a local response unit. set your SMART heating system to There are additional devices like only come on when you are within video door bells that you can answer a certain range of home. These anywhere in the world.

1

3

2


house & home | What you want to achieve or control with your SMART home devices will depend on which product will be best for you.

A SMART heating system can save you money on your energy bills

“Once you’ve chosen your base, the next thing you need to consider is what technology works with it”

4

Greater Accessibility If you or a loved one lives with a disability, having a SMART home can mean you get better accessibility. You can operate things from your mobile phone or simply by instructing a SMART hub like Google Assistant to do something.

5

Greater Control The more you connect your home devices to one central source, the easier life becomes. If you head upstairs to go to bed and forget to turn out the lights, you simply tell your SMART

hub to turn off the lights downstairs.

HOW MAKE YOUR HOME SMART

There are a few things to consider when setting up a SMART home. Most people start with buying a central hub and hope to add capability later. The four main products on the market are: Amazon Echo, Google Assistant, Apple HomeKit, and Works with Nest. Of all of these, probably Amazon’s Echo, otherwise known as Alexa, is the most well-known and advertised.

Once you’ve chosen your base, the next thing you need to consider is what technology works with it. Compatibility is still a slight issue but the devices have come on leaps and bounds. That’s why it pays to do a fair amount of research before you choose your device. The good news is that all of them are improving their accessibility. Remember, you don’t have to get everything all at once. You might already have a SMART TV, for example, that is ready to hook up to your hub. SMART home security systems are relatively inexpensive – you can install a high tech door system that hooks up to your mobile phone for a little over £200. On the utility side there are options such as Hive and a range of wireless operated thermostats that can also be installed. Setting up a SMART lighting system is a little more involved, but isn’t as complex as many people think. You can even buy kettles that you can operate through your hub system. Whether you just like gadgets, want to impress your friends, or simply want to control your home environment better, there’s plenty of scope when it comes to SMART home technology. Invest in a SMART hub to begin with and you’ll soon wonder how you were ever able to live without it. For help finding your dream home make the smart choice and pop into Northwood’s office at 56 Castle Street, Salisbury or call 01722 330066.

Most people start with a SMART TV like this Which? Best Buy from Samsung

• northwooduk.com THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

25


| motoring

The all-new Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

The all-new Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross is now available from £21,275 OTR from Salisbury Mitsubishi.

T

he new Eclipse Cross launched at the start of this year and has been developed with a focus on three core areas – inspiring design, driving dynamics and advanced technology - Mitsubishi’s new mid-sized SUV will be available in three trim levels – Eclipse Cross 2, Eclipse Cross 3 and Eclipse Cross 4. All versions of the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross are powered by an all-new 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine developing 163hp and 250Nm of torque, available with a six-speed manual or advanced new automatic transmission. The new transmission

26

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

benefits from the latest step logic technology to combine the packaging and running cost benefits of a CVT with the smoothness and responsiveness of a traditional automatic. The Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross is also available with two- or four-wheel drive, the latter incorporating the latest generation of Mitsubishi’s Super All-wheel Control (S-AWC) system that offers a choice of three advanced drive modes – Auto, Snow and Gravel. The Eclipse Cross is extremely well

specified, with even the entry-level 2 version offering features such as a touch-pad controller, Smartphone Display Audio that is compatible with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, rearview camera, DAB radio with six speakers, cruise control, climate control air conditioning, LED Daytime Running Lights, Bluetooth connectivity for hands-free calls, 16-inch alloy wheels, privacy glass and heated door mirrors. The cockpit-style driving environment in the Eclipse Cross reinforces its focus on driving pleasure and the spaciousness of


motoring |

“All versions of the Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross are powered by an all-new 1.5-litre turbocharged petrol engine developing 163hp” Control, Hill Start Assist, Brake Assist, seven airbags, dusk and rain sensors and automatic operation of the headlamps’ dipped beam. All these features are standard in the entrylevel Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross 2 which is priced from £21,275 OTR. The Eclipse Cross 3 builds on the specification of the 2 versions by adding 18-inch alloy wheels, a headup display, heated front seats, front and rear parking sensors, dual-zone climate control, keyless entry and keyless start, electrically folding door mirrors, silver side sills and an electronic handbrake on automatic versions. Pricing starts from £22,575 OTR for the front-wheel drive Eclipse Cross 3 manual and £23,850 OTR for the front-wheel drive automatic. The Eclipse Cross 3 4WD automatic is priced from £25,350 OTR.

Blind Spot Warning (BSW), Rear Cross Traffic Alert (RCTA), Lane Change Assist (LCA) and Adaptive Cruise Control (automatic only). Pricing for the flagship Eclipse Cross 4 starts at £24,975 OTR with the front-wheel drive manual transmission and £27,900 OTR for the 4WD automatic version. To find out more about the Eclipse Cross pop into Salisbury Mitsubishi at The Headlands in Downton or call the showroom on 01725 550720. • salisbury-mitsubishi.co.uk

the cabin is further enhanced by slide-and-recline adjustment for the 60:40 split rear seat on all models. To optimise loading comfort and facilitate loads of various sizes and shapes, the rear seat back has eight different recline settings and the base Completing the line-up, the flagship has up to 200mm of travel. Eclipse Cross 4 version builds on the The Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross protects 3’s specification with the additions of leather trim, electrically-adjustable its occupants, other drivers and driver’s seat, electric opening pedestrians with an array of safety panoramic roof, Rockford Fosgate features and systems. All versions Premium sound system with nine will have Lane Departure Warning, speakers and a suite of advanced Forward Collision Mitigation (FCM) that uses radar technology to detect driver assistance systems including a risk of collision, ABS, Active Stability LED headlamps, 360˚parking camera, THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

27


| puzzles

Tea Break Teasers RACQUET SPORTS WORDSEARCH

What/who is missing from the grid? BADMINTON BEACH TENNIS CROSSMINTON MATKOT PADEL PICKLEBALL QIANBALL

SUDOKU

MEDIUM

RACKETLON RACQUETBALL REAL TENNIS SPEED BALL SQUASH STICKE

TABLE TENNIS TENNIS

WIN A £10 NEXT VOUCHER! Email your answers to these trivia questions to comp@wired-publishing.co.uk by 15.06.18 to be in with a chance of winning a £10 Next Voucher. Good luck!

Q1: Who won the Women’s Singles world badminton title at the 2017 championships? Q2: Who won the British Open Squash Championship 10 times in succession (1982–1993)? LAST MONTH’S SOLUTIONS Wordsearch missing word: CAIRN Quiz answers: 1: The National Canine Defence League Silver Medal 2: Lassie Come Home 3: Petra 4: A Great Dane 5: Pembroke and Cardigan

28

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

Q3: Who was Jamie Murray’s partner when winning the Wimbledon Mixed Doubles title in 2007? Q4: What four sports make up Racketlon? Q5: At which Summer Olympics did Desmond Douglas represent Great Britain? Be sure to include your contact details so we can get in touch with you if you are our winner!


competition |

WIN TICKETS TO YEOVILTON INTERNATIONAL AIR DAY! The Royal Naval Air Station (RNAS) Yeovilton International Air Day will take place on Saturday 7 July, to showcase the Fleet Air Arm’s current and future capabilities and historic accomplishments spanning over 100 years. We have three pairs of tickets to the 2018 event to give away!

The show will include over five hours of dazzling flying displays featuring fast jets, historic warbirds, helicopters, formation aerobatic display teams and role demonstrations enhanced by spectacular pyrotechnics and flares. The show displays the world’s most capable pilots and their aircraft, both in the air and on the ground, and to provide an opportunity to see some magnificent equipment and meet our professional personnel in a family-friendly environment. In the Year of Engineering this is a great chance to inspire the next generation of engineers.

“THE SHOW DISPLAYS THE WORLD’S MOST CAPABLE PILOTS AND THEIR AIRCRAFT, BOTH IN THE AIR AND ON THE GROUND.” This show has everything to keep the whole family entertained. There will be a vast range of showground attractions from the latest defence technology exhibitions, engineering

fairs and service displays to trade stalls, arena displays, military bands and the chance to meet pilots and even sit in the cockpit! For the thrill seekers, there will be simulators, fairground rides and helicopter pleasure flights to enjoy. Whether you are a first timer or a dedicated aviation enthusiast, the Air Day has something for everyone. A full list of participating aircraft and ticket information are available from the website. Advance tickets to the show (available now until 2 July via the website) cost £24 for adults (16+) and £7 for children (5-15yrs). Tickets on the day will cost £30 for adults, £10 for children. Under 5s go free.

Royal Navy Merlin Role Demo

F-16C Fighting Falcon ‘Zeus’ Hellenic AF

• royalnavy.mod.uk/yeovilton-airday

WIN TICKETS TO THE SHOW! We are lucky enough to have 3 pairs of tickets to give away to our lucky readers. For a chance to win all you need to do is email your answer to this question to comp@wired-publishing.co.uk, remembering to include your contact details so we can dispatch your tickets if you win!

HOW MANY VISITORS ARE EXPECTED AT THIS YEAR’S SHOW? IS IT: A) 400

B) 4000

C) 40,000

Email your answers now. Good luck! Closing date for entries is 31.05.18. Entrants must be 18+. Entrants will be added to our mailing list to receive a digital copy of the magazine each month. You can opt out at any time. If you would prefer not to be added please state NO INFO on your entry.

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

images © Paul Johnson and Paul Fiddian

A

s one of the busiest military airfields in the UK and home to many aircraft operating in front-line squadrons and training units, the Somerset air station’s gates will be open to an expected 40,000 visitors.

29


| last word

Vive La France...

W

e have recently booked our summer holiday double the usual price as we now have to go in the school holidays obviously and, once again, we will be gracing France and the French people with our presence. Until 2015 I had never been to France, and frankly had no desire

She said something along the lines of not having seen the sun since our daughter was born in January 2013 and her skin turning a whiter shade of pale. Apparently 18 degrees and cloudy in the wilds of North Devon does not a summer holiday make! We made the collective decision not to fly - I don’t know how people with young children do it - and that meant a ferry crossing and a drive so France was chosen as the easiest option. I was less than impressed but despite

“Until 2015 I had never been to France, and frankly had no desire ever to do so. I had grown up with an attitude towards our French cousins that can only be described as irrational.”

30

ever to do so. I had grown up with an attitude towards our French cousins that can only be described as irrational. For some, still unknown and unexplained reason, I absolutely did not like France, or The French, even though every French person I had ever met, I even worked with two of them, were amazing. They were, to a man and woman, kind, funny, caring and great company; they were pretty much everything you would ever want in a person given the choice. For some reason though I wouldn’t give them, or their country, the time of day en masse. As I’m something of a foodie (I really like eating anyway), my wife in particular couldn’t understand it. ‘But that’s where all your favourite cheeses come from’ she’d say, hopelessly trying to convert me, but I wouldn’t be moved. I wasn’t going to France and no one could make me.

my arguing and baseless reasonings the decision had been made.

That was until one day in early 2015 when my wife put her foot down.

Buoyed by this success, in 2016, for a birthday treat, it was suggested

THESOUTHWILTSMAGAZINE

As you can imagine I had a terrible time right from the word go… I did not!! It was fantastic. The French people were brilliant, apart from the Gendarme who pulled me over for an on the spot speeding fine 20 minutes after leaving the ferry port. Even he was very pleasant. The country was beautiful, the villa we were staying at was wonderful, the area we were in , The Vendée, with its lovely beaches and forests was just stunning. The food, as you might expect, was top notch and best of all, for me at least, being a bit of a bread fiend, there was a local bakery 5 minutes away so fresh croissants and baguettes were on the menu every morning for brekkie. My wife, having been proven utterly right, was unsurprisingly rather smug.

that we might go to Paris to watch the England v France game in The Six Nations. Paris does not have a fantastic reputation for hospitality but, once again, our Gallic friends did themselves proud. The hotel staff were polite and helpful. The waiters, who probably have the worst rep of all, were brilliant and and even helped us out with our pidgin French. The city itself is absolutely stunning and deserves to be on everyone’s bucket list. The famous tourist attractions were obviously amazing but it was while walking around the city that it came into it’s own. We did get lost on the way back from the game late on Saturday night and ended up walking through a less than salubrious industrial estate on our own (I’m happy to say my wife’s fault, the universe does let me win once in a while!!) but we managed to flag down a taxi and didn’t even mind that he ripped us off a bit. As you may have guessed I am now a converted Francophile and am very excited about going back this year. We are staying at the same place as we did before so, as long as I can dodge the Gendarmerie, I will be dining on freshly made bread and patisserie for two lovely weeks in August.

Phil Rockliffe


To find out more please visit www.osjct.co.uk/careers or call Wendy on 07342 065026


The South Wilts Magazine - May/June 2018  

The South Wilts Magazine caters for all of South Wiltshire and beyond!

The South Wilts Magazine - May/June 2018  

The South Wilts Magazine caters for all of South Wiltshire and beyond!

Advertisement