YM Liverpool March 2024

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Aintree outfit picks Baltic Triangle homes

French wine in focus

Cosy living room ideas

speaks to YM ahead of sold-out Empire show

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Hello and welcome to the March edition of YM Liverpool!

First up this month we bring you my interview with multi-platinum-selling singer Paloma Faith as she gears up to play the Liverpool Empire as part of a UK tour in support of her new album, The Glorification of Sadness

The London-born star, who has described her sixth release as a “divorce record without the divorce”, discusses the cathartic experience of writing about the end of her long-term relationship and the importance of taking responsibility for your own happiness.

On the property front, we highlight a collection of stunning townhouses available at a new Baltic Triangle development and detail Legacie’s plans for a £5 million refurbishment of a Duke Street apartment scheme.

Meanwhile, our gardening guru Heather Marsh sings the praises of a glamorous shrub no garden should be without this month, Annie S presents her fashion picks for April’s Grand National Festival and the John Lewis team shares its tips on how to turn your living room into a snug haven.

Finally, Will Carr samples an epic Sunday roast at Old Hall Street’s NORD and WineTime Liverpool’s Jon Atkinson profiles a historic French estate which offers plenty of bang for your buck.

Until next time!


YM Liverpool 3 10 Editor Lawrence Saunders editor@ymliverpool.com
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SAUNDERS Editor ymliverpool.com YMLiverpool ym_liverpool © Precision Publishing. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, copied or transmitted in any form or by any means or stored in any information storage or retrieval system without the publishers written permission. Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy and reliability of material published, Precision Publishing can accept no responsibility for the veracity of the claims made by advertisers. The views expressed are not necessarily the views of the publisher. The cancellation deadline for advertising is strictly one week before publication and must be in writing to the sales manager. 16 34 15 ISSUE #523 GARDENING FREE Creating a sleep sanctuary Kate Humble interview Jon Atkinson on wine Growing winter herbs INSIDE www.ymliverpool.com JANUARY INTERIORS HOMES FREE www.ymliverpool.com Jon Atkinson on New Anfield apartments Essential gym kit Super Wok review INSIDE INTERIORS FASHION FREE www.ymliverpool.com Faith Singer-songwriter speaks to YM ahead of sold-out Empire show INSIDE Aintree outfit picks Baltic Triangle homes focus Cosy living room ideas Paloma

me This is

Paloma Faith is an award-winning singer-songwriter and actor who has released five critically acclaimed platinum-selling albums since 2009, beginning with her debut, Do You Want The Truth Or Something Beautiful? Her sixth release, The Glorification of Sadness, is an expansive, deeply personal piece that the London-born star describes as a “divorce record without the divorce”. We caught up with Paloma as she prepares to embark on a UK tour which arrives at the Liverpool Empire on 8 April words lawrence saunders

You’re playing the Liverpool Empire next month as part of a UK-wide tour. Do you enjoy performing here in Liverpool?

I love coming [to Liverpool] because my best friend is from the Wirral. I’ve got really fond feelings about that part of the country. I also really love Liverpool as a cultural hub and for all the history it’s got. The music is amazing as well. I feel like an honorary northerner. I always have a good time when I’m in this part of England because personalitywise, it suits me. Nobody’s up themselves!

Whilst The Glorification of Sadness was inspired in part by the end of your long-term relationship, this is by no means a sad album, is it?

It is sad [what happened] but it’s sort of indicative of who I am as a person. I tend to laugh in the face of adversity, just by nature. I’m also old enough, and wise enough, to know that every feeling is temporary – the bad ones and the good ones. You’ve just got to move on, you’ve got no choice. A lot of people struggle in life with not letting go. I think that’s a dangerous thing not to sort of teach yourself or your kids to do – sometimes you’ve just got to let things go. I remember my mum saying it to me all the time when I was a kid, she’d be like ‘Sometimes Paloma, you’ve just got to let things go!’. It was like a sort of thing she’d say, and I feel really grateful that she did. Quite often people make breakups about two individuals: what was his side? But in a psychological sense, it’s not really ever about who did and said what because you can survive anything if you choose to, maybe you just choose not to.

nothing felt right, nothing was comfortable. Writing felt like my only option because sometimes just doing something makes you feel better, rather than just sitting with it. So I started to make this music but when I did, I genuinely believed that it would be the worst music I’d ever written because in the past I’ve written about stuff in the moment and it’s been really s**t. But for some reason, I don’t know why, people were like ‘Keep going! It’s really good!’. Early days, I remember being really shy and playing some of what I’d written for one of the heads of my record label. She came round to my house and was in my kitchen crying listening to it.

The first single from the new album, ‘How You Leave a Man’, is a remarkably candid track about your breakup. Was it a cathartic feeling releasing a song like that out into the world?

‘How to Leave a Man’ is meant to be empowering. It’s about taking control and responsibility for your own happiness as a woman.

‘How You Leave a Man’, is meant to be empowering. It’s about taking control and responsibility for your own happiness as a woman. And not listening to the din of social pressures saying ‘You’re only accepted as a woman if you’re a victim’. There’s no room for a woman to say ‘Actually, I just wasn’t really happy’. It’s not really seen as acceptable, especially when there are kids involved. You’re just a bad mother, selfish or whatever. So with this album, I’m trying to pull it in the direction of it being okay to take ownership of your own happiness and not be a victim, re-establishing ideas of how we demonise women.

The album deals with a particularly traumatic period in your life. Was it difficult to write songs about what had happened or did it come naturally?

I think I had a nervous breakdown, I wasn’t diagnosed but I had some sort of breakdown and I felt so out of sorts. I wasn’t myself and

This is the first album that you’ve executively produced. Did you enjoy having more control over the finished product this time?

It’s the first album I’ve been given a production credit on but I’ve done it all before. I dug my heels in this time and pushed to actually get acknowledgement for what I do on these records. As a female artist you often don’t [get a production credit], but I was like ‘No, I’m not doing

4 YM Liverpool

that this time’. [The album] sounds how I wanted it to sound. My note, most of the time, was either ‘angrier’ or ‘darker’.

Aside from the new album and the tour, you’ve also got a book coming out in June about your experiences as well as your aims for the feminist movement. What inspired you to sit down and write it?

I started to notice that when I was being very frank on social media about my experiences as a woman, and as a mother, the response was really positive. I had a lot of engagement on those sorts of posts so I just felt like there might be an audience for a book expressing an alternate view of female identity struggles. [Writing] makes me feel less alone as well. We live in this very separate society now because of the internet, dating apps, Chat GPT, and the illusion of community online. How many times do we actually truly engage with each other? It adds another wall between us. Friends I’ve had for 20 years have said to me recently ‘Why don’t you just call us when you’re not feeling good?’. And I don’t know how to. I’ve forgotten how to.

Your children are obviously a huge part of your life. How do you cope with being away from them when you’re on tour?

Usually, the little one comes on the whole tour because she doesn’t have school. My eldest used to do the same but now she has school she gets so much FOMO (fear of missing out). I’ve scheduled this tour so that two weeks of it runs during the Easter holidays though, so she’ll get to come!

The Glorification of Sadness is out now. Paloma plays the Liverpool Empire on Monday 8 April as part of her UK tour

INTERVIEW YM Liverpool 5

Work starts on Prospect Homes’ Widnes development

Almost 100 new houses set to be released for sale this summer

PROSPECT HOMES HAS OFFICIALLY STARTED on-site at its latest housing development in Widnes.

Named Abbey Vale, the project got the green light in July 2023 for 99 homes ranging from two to four-bedroom houses, designed to suit the needs of local home buyers.

The 8.6-acre site, located off South Lane, was acquired from landowner Stephen Brookes, who chose Prospect Homes as the developer because of the company’s values and reputation.

Stephen says: “When we came to the decision to sell our home, we were approached by numerous housebuilders. Prospect stood out to us because of their ‘Homes for Good’ ethos and we liked the idea that profits from the sale of homes at Abbey Vale will be reinvested into social housing in the area.”

Michael Orgill, managing director of Prospect Homes, adds: “It’s a real milestone moment for Prospect Homes to see work start on this site. It was also lovely to be joined by Stephen, whose family has lived

at Abbey Farm since the 1860s. The new community that we are building is bringing much-needed homes to the area and we’re pleased that we can deliver this.”

Liverpool-headquartered Prospect Homes will invest over £600,000 into the local community and, because it is part of the Riverside Group, one of the UK’s leading social housing and regeneration organisations, all profits go towards helping others.

The first homes at Abbey Vale are expected to be released for sale this summer with show homes set to open in the autumn.

Potential buyers can register their interest at www.prospecthomes.co.uk/new-homes/abbey-vale/

Prospect is also currently on-site at Mitton Grange in Whalley and Bridgemere in Burscough.

Landlords urged to seek legal assistance with repossession

One Vision adds Warrington homes to Shared Ownership portfolio

Properties at Holly Grange scheme come with stylish kitchens and bathrooms

ONE VISION HOUSING has brought to the market 15 two and threebedroom homes for Shared Ownership at Holly Grange, Warrington.

The properties are situated within walking distance of Gemini Retail Park and within easy reach of the M62 for access to both Liverpool and Manchester.

The current release includes just four two-bedroom semi-detached houses, ideal for first-time buyers or downsizers alike, with shares available from as little as 10%.

All of the properties, constructed by Bloor Homes, come fully floored with stylish kitchens and bathrooms. Externally the properties include turfed and fenced gardens and off-road parking.

James Constable, sales manager for One Vision Housing, says: “We are excited to add these beautiful homes to our Shared Ownership portfolio.

“As always, Bloor Homes has provided a fantastic end product and we can’t wait to see what our customers make of these stunning properties.

“Our mission is to provide inclusive, thriving communities and this is an ideal spot to do just that.”

Reservations are currently being taken on the two-bedroom properties only, with the three-bedroom homes set to be released later this year.

For more information or to arrange a viewing, the One Vision Housing sales team can be contacted at sales@ovh.org.uk.

Paul Crowley & Co highlights the potential difficulties of reclaiming a property

AMIDST THE CHALLENGES of property management, private landlords often encounter the need to reclaim possession of their asset for a variety of reasons. Whether it’s due to tenant misconduct or financial constraints, there is sometimes no option other than to sell the property.

Navigating the repossession process demands meticulous attention to legal requirements, and if the correct course of action is not followed, many landlords can find themselves in the unenviable position of facing financial difficulties while struggling to gain repossession of their property.

Private landlords must adhere to specific mandatory procedures when seeking to regain possession. Failure to do so can lead to unfavourable outcomes, with the government and courts often siding with tenants in cases of procedural errors.

Recognising the complexity of gaining repossession, Liverpool law firm Paul Crowley & Co is urging landlords facing such challenges to seek legal assistance.

Julie Jones from PC&Co, who has a wealth of experience in handling landlord-tenant disputes, says: “It is of vital importance for private landlords to understand that accurate documentation is paramount for a successful repossession.

“By enlisting the support of PC&Co, our team of legal professionals can navigate the complexities of repossession with confidence, ensuring compliance with legal requirements and securing a favourable outcome.”

6 YM Liverpool
Prospect’s Andrew Denton & Sam Palin with previous landowner Stephen Brookes

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Private landlord services –Consult the legal experts

At Paul Crowley & Co solicitors we have a specialised private landlord legal services team with many years of experience in protecting the investments of private residential landlords. If you are a private landlord or renting agency and you have a problem tenant, it is important to follow the correct legal process or you could face a heavy fine or imprisonment for harassment or illegal eviction. Julie Jones, from Paul Crowley & Co is here to help and advise on how to fulfil your legal responsibilities as a private landlord, making life less stressful and saving you time and money in dealing with tenant disputes

What do I need to provide to tenants?

When a new tenant moves in, you are legally required to provide them with certain documents. It is important to do this as failure to provide them can prevent you from being able to serve a notice on a problematic tenant in the future.

Landlords must provide new tenants with:

Tenancy agreement

You must provide your tenants with a written document setting out the terms of the agreement, such as the start and end date of the tenancy and how much rent is to be paid.

A copy of the How to Rent Guide Landlords should provide new tenants with a current copy of the guide. Our team at Paul Crowley & Co will be able to provide you with this.

Details of the Deposit Protection Scheme

Within 30 days of a tenant paying their deposit, you are legally required to place this in a tenancy deposit protection scheme and to provide the tenant with the details. This ensures that the tenant will get their deposit back as long as they fulfil their obligations under the tenancy.

An Energy Performance Certificate (EPC)

Under Domestic Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard Regulations, private landlords of domestic properties must ensure their property’s EPC has at least an E rating for energy efficiency. Breaching this requirement could result in financial penalties.

Electrical Installation Condition Report (EICR)

This report details the conditions and efficiency of the electrical systems in the property and is valid for 5 years. Rental properties are legally required to have a valid EICR.

A Gas Safety Certificate

The main responsibilities for a landlord under the Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998 are to carry out annual gas safety checks on all appliances and pipework. You also need to provide a copy of the Gas Safety Record to your tenants within 28 days of a safety check.

Serving notice

Serving an eviction notice to a tenant might seem like a simple task, but many landlords who do so without seeking legal

advice mistakenly serve invalid notices which can delay the eviction process. This can prove a timely and costly error to the landlord. If you need to serve notice on a tenant, call Paul Crowley & Co’s dedicated conveyancing team for expert legal advice.

Section 8 notices: Section 8 notices can be used in lots of situations, for example if your tenant is in arrears of two months or more or has caused damage to the property. The notice must state the grounds the tenant has breached under Schedule 2 of the Housing Act 1988 and how much notice you must give depends on which of these grounds you rely on.

Section 21 notices: These can be used after a fixed term tenancy ends or during a periodic tenancy. However, you cannot serve a section 21 if you didn’t serve the right documents to the tenant when they moved in. A tenant must be given at least two months’ notice for this type of possession notice.

If you need advice on your obligations to a new tenant or help with eviction of a current tenant, our friendly team of conveyancing solicitors at Paul Crowley & Co are here to help.

To speak with a member of our landlord legal services team, call us now on 0151 264 7363. www.paulcrowley.co.uk
YM Liverpool 9

Karen Millen £199

Race Day


Get set for April’s Grand National Festival with Annie S’s winning picks

House of CB @ Selfridges £159

Ro&Zo @ Selfridges

10 YM Liverpool
Stretch-woven maxi dress Suit waistcoat with buttons Mango £45.99 Double-breasted suit blazer Mango £79.99 Floral applique woven maxi dress Corsage choker H&M £18.99 Bold stripe twisted stretch-jersey maxi dress £99.99 Gucci sunglasses Flannels £245



Spot tulle balloon sleeve tiered maxi dress


Embellished ruffle puff sleeve woven mini dress

Karen Millen £229

Self-Portrait @ Harvey Nichols £400

Cesca floral-print corseted stretchwoven maxi dress

House of CB @ Selfridges


Ruffled chiffon and stretch-jersey mini dress

ROTATE Birger Christensen @ Harvey Nichols


YM Liverpool 11
SL M95 sunglasses Floral lace midi dress Gold shell clutch bag H&M £44.99
YM Liverpool 13
14 YM Liverpool

Before we had even reached our seats, my partner and I found ourselves falling in love with NORD’s incredibly unique style. To our right, a DJ was spinning tracks at a huge circular bar. Nordic huts were dotted along the wall behind us and lights in the shape of doughnuts ran along the wall in front. With the orange and green colour scheme and the interesting curved hanging lamps, NORD seemed to be going for a ’60s retro-modern vibe – we half-expected the cast of Mad Men to be sitting next to us.

Anticipating great things from the Sunday Roast menu (two courses, £29 each), my partner elected to try the Grilled Pork Loin and I the Roasted Chicken. Moments later our food arrived along with a small army of mouth-watering side dishes. I was charmed by the home-style arrangement of the roast potatoes, veg and red cabbage. I started small. A humble parsnip. Though roasted, the veg wasn’t overdone and the sweet taste infused with the nutty, butteriness brought me right back to Christmas. I don’t know which Norse

The pork was delicious, tender and came with light and crispy crackling. With the tangy apple sauce it was match made in Valhalla.

god they’re in cahoots with but to make a parsnip the high point of a meal, to the point where I was still thinking about it days later, is some achievement!

The pork was delicious, tender and came with light and crispy crackling. With the tangy apple sauce, it was a match made in Valhalla. My chicken, beautifully cooked, was amazingly succulent, however, as a shameless glutton, I was slightly disappointed at the portion of a single thigh, especially after seeing the impressively-sized loin, but combined with the rest of the meal I certainly wasn’t leaving hungry.

The potatoes looked perfect, almost theoretical. Crispy and fluffy, my single complaint, and this is just personal taste, is that they lacked a great deal of flavour on their own. I’m used to butter, garlic and rosemary informing the flavour but with the excellent gravy, they were wonderful. For dessert, my partner chose Vanilla Creme Brûlée. It was smooth and creamy; the satisfying crumbly topping had an intense sweet aftertaste that hit like a speeding train made of sugar. I ordered the Banana Sticky Toffee with candied pecans and vanilla ice cream. There wasn’t a hint of banana, which didn’t bother me at all, and the pecans didn’t add much taste but rather acted as a pleasantly textured crouton in the ice cream and toffee soup it inevitably became. It was brilliant!

Aside from the very pretty hut-style wooden booths, the excellent pickled cabbage

and the sense that they’re doing everything right, I couldn’t really see anything in the restaurant which could be considered Nordicfusion. We’re planning to go back and try the standard menu to see if we can experience something a bit more Scandinavian. But if Norway is anything like what we experienced at NORD then I’m booking my ticket tomorrow. Bra gjort!

YM Liverpool 15
review FOOD
££ 100
NORD Restaurant
available with exclusive deposit offer
Liverpool townhouses

STUNNING TWO-BEDROOM townhouses at a new Baltic Triangle development can now be secured with a 20% deposit which is payable over an 18-month period.

First-time buyers and owner occupiers at Central Park can pay off the deposit for as little as £3,000 per month and then secure a mortgage once the scheme is complete*

Located in the Baltic Triangle – named among the world’s coolest neighbourhoods – these premium townhouses are part of a contemporary, eco-driven residence centred around tenant wellbeing and green space. Residents can walk to Liverpool’s waterfront in five minutes and reach Liverpool ONE in just 15.

Each two-bed/two-bath townhouse will feature a modern kitchen with a breakfast bar and integrated appliances on the first floor. An open-plan layout encompasses a lounge, dining area, first bathroom and even a private outdoor terrace. On the upper floor, there are two double bedrooms and a second bathroom suite. There is also access to amenities including an outdoor gym, landscaped gardens, a concierge and underground car parking.

Living spaces like these are a rarity in the city centre, and Central Park provides prospective buyers with a unique opportunity to acquire a brand-new, two-storey residence with exclusive outdoor space in a prime urban location.

For more information on Central Park, contact RWinvest on 0151 808 1250 or visit www.rw-invest.com/lp/townhouse/

YM Liverpool 17

Visit our show homes and

exclusive living, naturally

3 and 4 bedroom homes in Burscough

Introducing Bridgemere, a collection of three and four bedroom executive homes in the heart of the West Lancashire countryside, ideal for growing families and downsizers.

Situated next to the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, and surrounded by farmland, this is a place brimming with local wildlife.

The sounds, fresh air and the natural beauty of rural life are what make Bridgemere so special. Wake up to the cluck of a moorhen, the sound of songbirds in the trees and the gentle chugging of a barge engine.

With a stylish home in a peaceful location, yet close to shops, schools and the motorway network – modern living doesn’t get much better than this.

18 YM Liverpool
YM Liverpool 19 Call 01704 468 510 to book an appointment We can make moving easy with Part Exchange and Easy Move Visit prospecthomes.co.uk for more information Visit us at Orrell Lane, Burscough L40 0SJ Mon-Fri 10am – 4.30pm, Sun-Sat 10am – 5pm Join us for our Easter weekend canal narrowboat event! Book an appointment to secure your trip! Quality, space and exceptional fittings –everything you’d expect in a styleconscious home is here. March 30th-31st
20 YM Liverpool

Ferrandière Vignobles

Jon Atkinson profiles a historic French estate which offers plenty of bang for your buck

I DON’T THINK I HAVE FOCUSSED any of my columns thus far on a single estate, but this one intrigues me; Domaine Ferrandière is a 100-hectare estate at Aigues-Vives which is due east of the town of Carcassonne in south-west France. It was originally established by the Gau family just over 100 years ago and is unusual in so far as it was planted on the bed of a reclaimed salt-water lagoon, the Etang de Marseillette.

The estate was acquired by Domaines Paul Mas in 2013 and Jean-Claude has subsequently planted 18 different grape varieties here. Due to the high salt levels that are residual in the soil, phylloxera (a burrowing louse that feeds on the sap in the roots of the vine) cannot survive, so ungrafted vines can be planted; these live longer and in theory give a more concentrated fruit. The high salt levels have resulted in the development of a unique cultivation technique in which the vineyards are flooded in winter and spring to flush the majority of

the salt deeper down into the sub-soil, which is achieved through a network of irrigation channels.

Although the vineyards are typically less than 25 metres above sealevel, there is a surprisingly high fluctuation in temperature between night and day (diurnal range) which allows for a goodly length of growing season and suitably prolonged ‘hang time’ with the associated benefits to quality of fruit. The vineyards are farmed sustainably and are certified by Terra Vitis. All of the range is vegan-friendly.

I have been very impressed with the quality of wine produced here –you certainly get plenty of bang for your buck! We started importing a comprehensive selection of their wines last year and they have already established themselves as firm favourites with staff and customers alike. I was in a bit of a quandary as to which ones to pick for my recommendations this month, but eventually settled on the following, all of which are available from our Great Howard Street store.

Chardonnay IGP Pays d’Oc 2022 The Chardonnay vines that produce this deliciously crisp and elegant wine are between 30 and 50 years old. Being fairly mature, they give a lovely quality of concentrated fruit which is harvested in the cool of night to guard against oxidation and help retain the freshness and delicacy of the aroma. Fermentation is temperature-controlled and the wine spends three months on the lees for added complexity. A pure, elegantly dry, precise palate with plenty of lean pineapple and Granny Smith fruit with a subtle creaminess. Crisp with plenty of vitality and a full, well-rounded mouthfeel finishing long and mineral. £10.95

Le grand Vin Blanc IGP Pays d’Oc 2022 This is a style of wine that I affectionately refer to as ‘full-fat’! It is a slightly unorthodox blend of Chardonnay, Viognier and Pinot Gris each of which was vinified separately after night harvesting with maceration on the skins (although this is no orange wine!). After blending it was aged for four months in a 50/50 mix of French and American oak barriques. Deep straw yellow/pale gold in appearance with silver tints and a rich, toasty/honeyed nose with vanilla and nutmeg aromas with honeydew melon and nectarine fruit. The palate is broad, creamy-textured and powerfully flavoured – full-bodied, rich and rounded with warming oak, honeyed pineapple and spicy vanilla flavours with a toasty oakiness on the finish. £14.50

Pinot Noir IGP Pays d’Oc 2022 The Pinot Noir plantings at Ferrandière are about 15 years old and with this variety being thin-skinned and relatively delicate, as with the white varieties, it is also harvested at night. There is also a Reserve version of Pinot Noir here, but we prefer the vitality of this unoaked version. Pale ruddy red with an orange-pink rim and medium viscosity. A beguiling nose with generous, herb-infused red berry fruits with hints of cumin and carraway seed. Quite full in the mouth by Pinot Noir standards with juicy acidity, very gentle, chalky-textured tannins and plentiful soft red fruit that finishes long, quite dry and mineral. £10.95

Malbec IGP Pays d’Oc 2022 Given the runaway success of Malbecs from Argentina, it’s easy to forget that this most popular variety originates from France, specifically the small region of Cahors. Malbec seemingly does very well in the Languedoc with an ever-increasing number of very decent examples (including this one!). As with the Pinot Noir, this one does not see any time in oak, allowing the purity of fruit to shine through. Medium deep, ruby red with a garnet rim with a richly fruity nose with damson, blueberry and redcurrant aromas with hints of cinnamon and cracked black peppercorns. The palate is medium – full-bodied, supple and juicy with generous, slightly spicy red fruit flavours with ripe, gently chewy tannins and a long, slightly mineral finish. £10.95


YM Liverpool 21

Inside the Liverpool Performing Arts School Turning Young Performers into Stars

Liverpool Theatre School graduates have appeared in a string of West End shows and smash hit musicals

Walking through the doors at Liverpool Theatre School, it’s hard to ignore the incredible buzz and energy coming from the studios as the city’s most talented young students prepare for a future in the performing arts industry.

The sound of singing rings through the corridors, while the dance studios are alive with students taking classes in everything from ballet and tap to commercial dance and stage combat. Intensive training requires dedication and these students

have already shown they have plenty of it after battling through a strict audition process to earn their place on an elite programme at the prestigious centre of excellence.

Serving as a powerful reminder that dreams really can come true, the walls are adorned with faces of the many musical theatre stars, professional dancers and actors who all learned their craft at Liverpool Theatre School. Many graduates can be seen in West End shows and smash hit musicals such as Natalie Pilkington,

“Nothing makes me prouder than watching Liverpool Theatre School graduates perform, whether they’re in a West End show, on an international stage or in a touring musical.”

who is currently touring in SIX; Oliver Ormson, who stars as Prince Hans in the West End adaptation of Frozen; and Tim Lucas, who plays Sammy in the Blood Brothers UK tour.

Alumni also includes Coronation Street and Hollyoaks star Stephanie Davis, actor Sam Kane, renowned choreographer and casting consultant Graeme Pickering; and the acclaimed Tommy Sherlock, who appeared in West End shows such as Matilda and Wicked before joining Tenors of Rock in Las Vegas.

Explaining how Liverpool Theatre School is preparing the next generation of performers for life in the industry, Principal, Maxine Ellis (pictured), said: “The elite training programmes at Liverpool Theatre School are very much designed to equip students with the skills they need to make it as professional performers.

22 YM Liverpool

“We work with some of the best tutors in the business to make the highest level of training, which was once only available in London, accessible to young people in Liverpool. As well as giving students the opportunity to grow as performers, we also encourage them to develop as professionals, working on everything from creating a stand out showreel to audition preparation and networking within the industry.

“Later this month, our graduating students will be taking over the Leicester Square Theatre in the West End. We organise a London showcase every year to give our final year students a valuable opportunity to perform in front of casting directors, agents and industry influencers. Liverpool Theatre School students also regularly have the chance to take part in shows at venues such as the Hope Street Theatre and the Floral Pavilion.

“Our aim is to nurture and develop emerging talent as we help young performers to achieve their ambitions. We know we’ve done our job properly when graduates leave with the confidence and the ability to walk straight into a professional role. Nothing makes me prouder than watching Liverpool Theatre School graduates perform, whether they’re in a West End show, on an international stage or in a touring musical.”

Liverpool Theatre School, whose patrons include dance legend Wayne Sleep OBE and stage and screen star Anita Dobson, provides professional training in Dance, Musical Theatre and Acting with a range of BTEC courses and elite programmes accredited by Trinity College London.

Tucked away behind Liverpool’s Baltic Triangle, Liverpool Theatre School re-located from Aigburth Road to Liverpool Central Studios on Sefton Street (L8) in 2019. As one of the city’s longest running performing arts training providers, the thriving centre of excellence is celebrating its 85th anniversary this year.

Liverpool Theatre School allocates a number of fully funded places and bursaries to talented students every year, as part of a commitment to making professional training accessible to all young performers, particularly those from working class backgrounds. The Ofsted ‘outstanding’ school is one

Liverpool Theatre School graduate, Natalie Pilkington, is currently touring in SIX

of just 15 places in the country, and the only one in Merseyside, to offer the DaDAs (Dance and Drama Awards) to support students with the cost of professional training.

As well as providing fulltime elite training for talented students from the city and beyond, Liverpool Theatre School also runs a junior academy with evening and weekend classes that are open to all young people with a passion for singing, dancing and acting.

Liverpool Theatre School is on the lookout for talented young performers to audition for professional training in Dance, Musical Theatre and Acting. To find out more, please call 0151 728 7800 or visit liverpooltheatre school.co.uk


A snug

The interiors ingredients you need for a cosy living room

A COSY HOME should be a retreat from the world outside – filled with your favourite smells and sounds, with colours and textures that make you feel content and relaxed. Make your sofa the best seat in town and arrange your seating in a way that encourages conversation, with flat surfaces nearby so you can put your feet up, plonk a coffee down and create cosy zones with understated lamp lighting. Layer your living room with the things you love to make it feel more personal, because being cosy is ultimately a state of mind...


Scented candles are a two-fold win for your senses. Flickering candlelight is calming and creates an atmosphere of warmth – especially if you don’t have the glow of a working fireplace to bathe in. If you do nothing else, invest in some scented candles – they’re such an effective way to get into a snuggly state of mind.


Putting a deep colour or bold print on your walls can have a big impact on how characterful and cosy a living room feels. You could research colour psychology (darker hues are said to make us feel more enveloped in a space) or just take a punt on the shades and patterns that you’re most drawn to. If redecorating is a step too far, simply fill the walls with artwork that you love.

You don’t have to spend a fortune on original paintings – create an eclectic gallery wall of framed prints by your favourite artists, exhibition posters, vintage finds and the kids’ masterpieces from school.


There’s nothing like a rug for pulling a space together and making it feel homely. Wooden floors look beautiful but they can make a living room seem cold or sparsely decorated. This is where the natural texture of a jute or wool rug can really ramp up the cosy level. As well as feeling soft underfoot, it’ll absorb sound and reduce echo in a large room.

If you have an open-plan living room with dining and seating areas, rugs can help to define and zone those spaces. Do as interior designers do and go for a large size to anchor your furniture and pull a colour scheme together.


From £125

Being cosy involves all of the senses and sound shouldn’t be overlooked. Hearing a favourite song or piece of music can trigger good memories, relax you when you’re feeling tense or – from a practical point of view – help to block out other lessrelaxing noises (we’re looking at you, passing cars). Invest in a compact, voice-controlled speaker for your living room so you don’t even need to get up from the sofa to set the tone. Play some vintage jazz, mix a drink and pretend you’re in a New York lounge bar.


Resist the temptation to stick the overhead light on and instead use table lamps with shades to diffuse the light and improve your mood. The Scandi trick is

to position your lamps only in the areas of the room where you need them, to create inviting, peaceful zones for reading and relaxing.

Choose warm 40W bulbs and combine floor and wall lights with your table lamps for a soft, layered look.



For movie nights at home, name a more iconic duo than the sofa and a soft wool throw. They’ll keep you warm through a Netflix binge and when they’re not being used, throws earn their keep on the aesthetic front, too.

Herringbone Knit Throw

Drape your blanket over the back or arm of a sofa – the extra layers of texture will look stylish, soften the look of your furniture and add a tactile vibe. Neutral colours and natural fibres always feature in the best stylist-dressed rooms and a classic check or waffle knit can add some extra interest where it’s needed.


Artfully arranging your best coffee table books and displaying meaningful items will add colour and character to a minimalist living room.

Adding shelves might not be the first thing that springs to mind when considering a snug space, but you can add them along empty walls and in fireplace alcoves to display houseplants, ornaments, travel mementos, candlesticks, framed photos and anything that you love. They’re the perfect way to fill a sparse living room with personality and happy memories – all conducive to a warm, contented feeling.


Cushions are the oldest cosy trick in the book and for good reason –they’re an underrated and impactful way to quickly change a space. Add a selection of cushions in varying sizes to your sofa or armchairs (with plump feather cushion pads) and get ready to dive in. As a simple way to restyle a room and pull a scheme together, cushions also help to soften the angles of a sofa, making it look less formal and more irresistibly squishy. Choose tactile cushions in sheepskin and velvet for the most luxurious feel against your skin.


Accent furniture can really influence overall ambience and the way you might use a space. By investing in natural tones and materials such as wood for your side and coffee tables, you’re adding another tactile element to your living room. Organic lines and rounded shapes will help to improve the flow of space by minimising the number of angles. Lastly, no one wants to discover that the reading lamp is six feet away or have to traverse a room to put down their wine glass, so allow space in your living room for side tables and a coffee table or upholstered footstool.

Elemental Colour Block Rug £60 La Poire ‘Green Dress’ Framed Print £70 Apple HomePod mini Smart Speaker £99 Elephant Ceramic Table Lamp £100 Sutton Stripe Cushion £15 Wycombe Storage Side Table £349 Sloane Footstool £529 The Ritual of Jing Scented Candle £26.90

Ideal apartment for first-time buyers at new Anfield development

From £104,995


LOCATED AT PERSIMMON HOMES’ new Edinburgh Park development in Anfield, this affordable onebedroom apartment is perfect for those looking to get onto the property ladder.

Prospective owners can look forward to making their mark on a home which boasts an open plan kitchen/ living space, handy storage cupboards, spacious bedroom and modern family bathroom.

Situated off Townsend Lane, Anfield Stadium is Edinburgh Park’s proud local landmark, but if football isn’t your thing, it’s only a 20-minute drive into the city centre.

There are regular bus services from Anfield, and you can catch a train on the Merseyrail network from Kirkdale or Sandhills. From there services take you to Liverpool Central in about six minutes – it’s a short walk to Liverpool Lime Street for onward journeys – or towards Southport along the coast.

Though the bars, restaurants, shops and attractions of Liverpool city centre are all within easy reach, Edinburgh Park is also ideally situated for young families. There are several primary schools less than a mile from the development including All Saints’ Catholic Voluntary Aided Primary School, St Matthew’s Catholic Primary School and Whitefield Primary School, all rated ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted.

Persimmon Homes is currently offering a number of incentives to prospective buyers including its part exchange scheme as well as deposit or mortgage contributions.

For more information on this property or the wider Edinburgh Park development call 0151 4593 872 or visit persimmonhomes.com

YM Liverpool 27

The Jacksons to headline tribute to Mathew Street Festival at Pier Head

Organisers say summer event will deliver a ‘celebration of Liverpool’s culture and musical heritage’

The Jacksons will play at the Pier Head as part of a newlook Mathew Street Festival celebration during the August Bank Holiday weekend.

Liverpool Celebrates, which has partnered with The Mathew Street Festival team to bring the iconic event back to the city, has recently announced a bumper line-up.

Holly Johnson, lead singer of Frankie Goes to Hollywood, will perform hits including ‘Relax’, ‘Two Tribes’ and ‘The Power of Love’ as part of a huge opening night on Friday, 23 August.

Johnson will be joined by The Lightning Seeds, Space, China Crisis and local emerging stars for an evening of music celebrating local talent.

The Jacksons, who now include brothers Jackie, Tito and Marlon Jackson, will headline the Saturday, accompanied by a spectacular 10-piece live band.

The American group will perform legendary tracks such as ‘Blame It On The Boogie’, ‘I Want You Back’, ‘ABC’ and ‘Can You Feel It’ after Boyzlife – the Brian McFadden and Keith Duffy supergroup – rock the Pier Head with a string of Boyzone and Westlife number ones.

Meanwhile, Jonny Bongo of Bongo’s Bingo will bring his Festival Experience to the event with N-Trance also set to take the stage for a lively set.

Performance slots have been left open on the Saturday to offer local talent the opportunity to perform on the same stage as The Jacksons.

On Sunday, honouring the legacy of the Mathew Street Festival, the Cavern Club Beatles will headline alongside tribute acts for ABBA, David Bowie, Bruce Springsteen and The Doors.

The Cavern Takeover on Bank Holiday Monday features Adele, The Who, Elton John, Oasis, The Rolling Stones and Dios Salve A La Reina – God Save the Queen – a celebrated Queen tribute act which has been flown in from Argentina to feature at the festival.

Steven Fletcher of Liverpool Celebrates says: “We are proud to announce a lineup which not only pays tribute to The Mathew Street Festival but also welcomes iconic, international groups

“We hope we have put together a lineup music lovers from the city and beyond can be proud of and we are so excited to welcome people into Liverpool for this celebration.”

such as The Jacksons back to Liverpool as well as a brilliant blend of local talent.

“The Jacksons are returning to the city for the first time in almost 50 years while Dios Salve A La Reina were show-stoppers at the last Mathew Street Festival in 2013.

“There will also be opportunities for emerging artists to perform at the festival, and we will be hosting opportunities for performers to earn the chance to take to the main stage across the weekend.”

Daniel Sanders of Liverpool Celebrates adds: “We hope we have put together a line-up music lovers from the city and beyond can be proud of and we are so excited to welcome people into Liverpool for this celebration.

“Liverpool Celebrates is delighted by the reaction of both the public and venues across the city since we announced the tribute to the Mathew Street Festival and we believe this line-up will deliver a bumper August Bank Holiday weekend of fun, music and memories to Liverpool city

Tickets for Liverpool Celebrates Mathew Street Festival are available to buy now. Prices start at £25 plus booking fee. To find out more,


28 YM Liverpool
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Legacie acquires Duke Street apartment scheme and plots luxury refurbishment

Developer plans to add jacuzzis to existing penthouses as part of £5m transformation


Legacie has purchased a Duke Street apartment scheme from Grainger plc for an undisclosed sum.

The building, previously known as Spectrum, was constructed in 2008 and will be renamed ‘The Mercantile’ by Legacie to reflect the rich trading history of the Duke Street Conservation area.

After completing the acquisition, Legacie is committing to a £5m refurbishment of the building which will include all 32 apartments and four penthouses – each of which will feature a jacuzzi on the terrace.

Legacie will also redesign the central atrium to include communal breakout areas, with a 12-month projected build time. The firm is offering five apprenticeships to coincide with the scheme and estimates a further 30 construction jobs will be created.

The Mercantile is within five minutes’ walking distance of Liverpool ONE and the Ropewalks district as well as popular amenities such as Duke Street Food & Drink Market

International sales agent, RWinvest, has partnered to promote the scheme while Legacie Contracts will handle the construction element.

John Morley, CEO of Legacie, says: “Legacie is delighted to complete a deal for Duke Street Residential with Grainger plc.

“We are committed to refurbishing the building to the highest standards, including the full redesign of the central atrium to offer modern, comfortable and luxurious living space.

“It has been an exciting start to 2024 for Legacie and this deal further underlines our commitment to Liverpool city centre.

“I am pleased Legacie has once more stepped forward to deliver on a site which has real potential while providing a further economic boost in the area.”

Michael Gledhill, director at RWinvest, adds: “We are excited to bring further luxury homes to an exciting area of Liverpool city centre which is experiencing an unprecedented amount of growth.

“We are committed to promoting the city and I am delighted to work once more with Legacie as we offer both luxury living and new jobs for local people.”

32 YM Liverpool
YM Liverpool 33


Prima Donna

MARCH STRADDLES THE SEASONS and has always been a month of two halves – coming in like a lion and going out like a lamb. So, with Easter being early this year, I suspect the weather will be on the chilly side and our gardens will still look rather bare. Whilst there are plenty of green shoots and fat buds about, spring is not quite full-blown just yet. Seasonal plants already in bloom do help bridge the gap and are cheap and cheerful with daffodils, primulas, hyacinths and pansies amongst those that will inject some much-needed colour into your garden. However, if you’re looking for a bit of class, a breathtaking specimen that will bloom year after year, then look no further than the camellia. Flowering profusely through winter and into early spring, this exquisite evergreen shrub is a flamboyant

showstopper like no other. Native to the woodlands of South Asia, camellias have been cultivated for hundreds of years. Growing up to 20ft in height and 10ft in width, camellia japonica also known as the common camellia, is very straightforward to grow if you follow a few simple guidelines.

The magnificent camellias I’ve seen growing locally are all mature specimens and obviously very happy where they are situated. Most were in front gardens, an ideal position for a camellia – especially if it’s in semi-shade as this replicates their natural habitat. But like any prima donna camellias can be a little temperamental and if you want them at their best you have to treat them well. Camellias do best in acid or neutral soil so the key to growing them successfully in your garden

34 YM Liverpool
Heather Marsh on a glamorous and easy-to-grow shrub no garden should be without this month

means you should first identify the soil type you have. A soil testing kit will accurately work that out for you, other than that you can just see what grows well in your neighbour’s gardens as chances are they have the same soil type as you do. Failing that, camellias are ideal grown in pots and containers as well (Monty Don and Alan Titchmarsh both do this). Planting them in ericaceous compost (available at all good garden centres), they will thrive just as well. Watering plants, especially young ones, throughout the summer is vital for their success wherever you grow them. Keeping plants hydrated during the warmer months is essential as this is when it forms next year’s flower buds. With literally hundreds of camellia varieties to choose from in all shades of red, pink and white, you’ll be spoilt for choice. Here are a few I highly recommend...

Make Your Own Easter Basket

Baskets filled with spring flowers are a traditional seasonal favourite and make lovely gifts too. Shop-bought ones are so expensive and making them up yourself couldn’t be easier. Baskets can be picked up cheaply from lots of discount stores – I’ve even had some good finds in charity shops.

Lining the basket with plastic or thick tin foil to begin with makes the whole thing waterproof. Next, fill the basket halfway up with peat-free potting compost and then comes the fun part. Stuff your basket with bedding plants and bulbs that are available everywhere right now from local greengrocers to all major supermarkets. Choosing a variety of plants in size and colour works best. Here are some classic favourites to include that you just can’t go wrong with. Primulas bring instant cheer with their vibrant colour and with such an array to choose from I’m always spoilt for choice, with bright pinks to deep purples set against sunny yellows and crisp whites, I usually end up buying one of each. Pots of dwarf daffodils are the ultimate spring flower and are so easy to plant up in between all the others – giving height and structure to your arrangement. I simply adore hyacinths and their heavenly perfume – especially the soft pink and deep blue varieties. If you’re going for maximum overload (as I always do!), find a spot for a pansy or two. These bright cheerful plants really earn their keep and will go on flowering well into early summer. Finally, if you’ve an inch of space left, novelty additions like decorated eggs, chicks and bunnies will add the perfect finishing touch but the ultimate for me has to be the quintessential bow – in my book, no Easter basket would be complete without one.

Camellia E.G Waterhouse Notably vigorous and free blooming Camellia Alba Plena Pure white double flowers, blooms late spring Camellia E.G Waterhouse Vigorous and free blooming Camellia Japonica Bonomania Raspberry ripple
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YM Liverpool 37

Knowsley-based energy retrofit

firm secures place on £820m framework

Fusion21 has appointed Next Energy to two lots, which cover domestic air source heat pumps and solar panels

NEXT ENERGY HAS BEEN NAMED on a new national heating, renewables and electrical framework by Fusion21 worth up to £820 million across a four-year period.

The Knowsley-based firm has been appointed to two lots, which cover domestic air source heat pumps (ASHP) and solar panels, allowing the company to design, install and service ASHP and solar systems, battery storage and associated works.

The Fusion21 framework was set up to help the owners of domestic and non-domestic buildings ensure they are safe and compliant with heating and electrical installations, and to support their journey towards carbon net zero.

Alongside traditional heating installation and electrical testing, the framework also covers innovative technologies dedicated to sustainable heating solutions.

Next Energy will join a total of 80 specialist firms which have also been appointed to the framework, now in its fourth year.

Lee McNally, director at Next Energy, says: “To have secured a place on Fusion21’s Heating, Renewables and Electrical framework is a great achievement for Next Energy and comes right off the back of a bumper year of contract wins in 2023, which amounted to £60m.

“The framework will allow us to continue to deliver best-in-class energy efficiency measures across the North West, and we look forward to working with new and existing partners on the delivery of these projects.”

Chris McQuillan, framework manager at Fusion21, adds: “We are delighted to welcome all of the new suppliers onto Fusion21’s heating, renewables and electrical framework, including Next Energy.

“The tender process was highly competitive and has identified the best contractors for our members to use for the delivery of a whole range of heating and electrical programmes.

“Members accessing this framework will benefit from flexible call-off options, UK-wide coverage, and the option to deliver social value to their communities, aligned to their organisational priorities.”

Next Energy was established in 2016 in response to the government’s net zero ambitions. Since its inception, the company has provided energy solutions for more than 18,000 customers across the UK.

Cash boost for life sciences hub
Funding will ‘accelerate city’s future as a worldleading science & innovation hub’

LIVERPOOL CITY COUNCIL has welcomed a multi-million-pound boost for its new life sciences hub and Great Homer Street Market.

Michael Gove the secretary of state for levelling up, housing and communities announced a £31 million investment package for Liverpool.

Up to £13m of the funding will be spent on delivering HEMISPHERE One, a new eight-storey Grade A office development which will include up to five floors of new labs and promote net zero principles in

Paddington Village.

Construction of HEMISPHERE One is expected to begin in early 2025 and be complete by early 2027.

A total of £5m has been set aside to enable an upgrade for Great Homer Street Market, which will allow for its expansion and more traders.

Council Leader, Cllr Liam Robinson, says: “We are delighted that the government has endorsed our plans and is willing to invest in Paddington Village in our Knowledge Quarter.

“This investment will help to accelerate the city’s future as a world-leading science and innovation hub.

“In addition, the funding for Great Homer Street Market is equally welcome as this will ensure we can grow this vital community asset in North Liverpool.”

38 YM Liverpool
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