Surrey’s Premier Lifestyle Magazine

Breast Augmentation Tips from our Surgeons and Patients

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Are you considering Breast Augmentation surgery?

At Bella Vou we want to share with you the best advice from our Plastic Surgeons, staff and patients who have had the procedure with our clinic. We take you on a complete journey, from advice on what to ask your surgeon, how you can get the best outcome from your surgery to tips from previous patients about how to have a comfortable recovery. Read the full article here >>>
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The history of the Facelift procedure

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It may surprise you to know that the Facelift procedure has been around for over 100 years and with pioneering techniques evolving over the years, the facelift has seen many medical advancements in the search for eternal youth.

We discuss the history of the Facelift and the surgeons who first pioneered it including Bella Vou’s Concept™ Facelift procedure pioneered by Head Surgeon Amir Nakhdjevani.

The historical pioneers of the Facelift Procedure
The desire to recapture a youthful appearance led to the first reported attempt of a Facelift procedure that took place in 1901 which was performed by Eugen Hollander in Berlin. A female Polish aristocrat requested that she would like for him to tighten the skin around her cheeks and corners of her mouth. After much deliberation he attempted the procedure to excise an elliptical piece of skin around the ears, but Hollander only excised skin at the front of the ear and closed the hole; he didn’t lift the area. Read the full article here >>>

The Surrey Hills Wood Fair 2017


The Surrey Hills Wood Fair, now in its 8th year takes place at the Birtley Estate in Bramley on Saturday 30th September and Sunday 1st October from 10am – 5pm.

Each year the fair gets bigger and better yet retains the traditional charm of a rural day out in the Surrey Hills for all the family.

This year you’ll discover a range of interesting stalls to browse and buy from as well as great local produce and a variety of refreshment stands including a beer tent! The Surrey and Sussex Coppice workers will be demonstrating their skills and there will be opportunities to buy a whole host of wood products.
There’s a big focus on families with lots for children from craft making and animal attractions to theatre shows and workshops courtesy of the Man in the Moon Theatre Tent. The Wood Fair is also FREE for children under 12, making this a family day out not to be missed!

Come and discover:
• Coppice Crafts & Wood Products
• Trade Stands
• Local Produce
• Horse & Wagon Rides
• Demonstrations, including Horse Logging
• Bug Hunts
• Wide Range of Catering & Beer Tent
• Live Music provided by the Academy of Contemporary Music (ACM)
• Children’s Activities (including Tree Climbing and Zip wires!)
• Animal Attractions

Entertainment remains high on the agenda this year and once again we will be working with the Academy of Contemporary Music (ACM) in Guildford to showcase local musicians. To entertain the whole family, why not take a ride on the ever popular horse and wagon rides or marvel at the spectacular chainsaw demonstrations on site?

For more information please visit:

Adult (early pre-booked online) - £7.50
Adult (on the gate) - £10
Member of the Surrey Hills Society (with valid card) - £5
Children (under 12) – FREE

Exhibition opening

MIX: Summer Group Show

Lawrence Alkin Gallery: 28th July – 2nd Sept 2017
Private View and Press Preview: Thurs 27th July 2017
Opening on 28 July is the annual MIX Summer Group Show at Lawrence Alkin Gallery in Soho, London.

The MIX Summer Group Show will consist new and exclusive original works, and a select number of sought-after limited edition prints from more than 20 modern and contemporary artists. As well as those on the gallery roster, the show will feature a handful of carefully selected artists who are exhibiting in the UK for the first time.
Harland Miller 'I Am The One I've Been Waiting For'
Gallery Director Sam Rhodes commented on what people can expect from the show: “Our annual summer group show is always an interesting exhibition, showcasing many talented contemporary artists, each with their own signature style and differing medium and practices. We’ve curated a mix of established and emerging artists, spanning collage, silkscreen prints, neon, oil, acrylic and watercolour paintings, pencil drawings and mixed media. The main thing they all have in common is clearly defined originality. It’s a real treat to have such a concentrated pool of talent in one show.”
Static 'In Bloom - Dare'
Each original artwork being exhibited in the show is brand new and hasn’t been shown before. This includes three fashion industry-inspired pieces by New York street artist XORS who’s exhibiting in the UK for the first time, a neon piece ‘I Love You’ by Zoe Grace and the very last original in a series by Nick Smith.
Zoe Grace 'I Love You'
Exhibiting artists include Damien Hirst, Banksy, Harland Miller, Stik, Dave White, Zoe Grace, Lucy Sparrow, Florian Eyman, Dean Fox, Static, Ryan Callanan, Renee Snelman (XORS), Euan Roberts, Miss Bugs, Bridgette Riley, Patrick Caulfield, Will Blanchard, Chris Levine, Nick Smith, Holly Frean, Abi Whitlock, Tom French, Jeff Gillette and Teresa Duck.

MIX: Summer Group Show runs from Friday 29 July to Saturday 2 September at Lawrence Alkin Gallery, 42 New Compton Street London WC2H 8DA @lagalleryart

Rebecca Evans from St John’s School, Leatherhead, discusses the new 1-9 grading system for GCSE

This year sees the first step in the phased introduction of the new GCSE grading system. This is the first major change to GCSE grading since the introduction of the A* grade in 1994.

The new GCSEs will be graded 9–1, rather than A*–G. Grade 9 is the highest grade, set above the current A*. The intention of the new system is to provide more differentiation, particularly among higher achieving pupils.

Which subjects are affected and when?
The new reformed GCSEs in English language, English literature and mathematics were first taught in September 2015 and the first results using the new grading system will be published this August.

The second phase started in September 2016 with more subjects moving across to the new specifications including science (including separate sciences), languages, history, geography, art and design, physical education, computer science, food preparation and nutrition, design and technology, religious studies, music and drama. These subjects will be examined under the new system in summer 2018

The majority of other subjects will follow in the third tranche of changes and these will first be taught in September 2017 and examined in summer 2019. This also includes several IGCSE qualifications.

The phased introduction of the grading system means that your child might have a mixture of lettered and numbered grades if they are taking GCSEs in 2017 and 2018.

Why change the system?
The new GCSE grading scheme is part of a new curriculum which was introduced in England's schools in 2014 by Michael Gove, the Education Secretary at that time. He wanted pupils to study a wider and more demanding syllabus.

He called for a more traditional format, with less coursework than before and a greater weight on final examinations taken after two years of study.

How will it work?
The table shows how the old and new grades equate.

The lower end of the new grade 4 will be equivalent to the lower end of grade C. Approximately the same proportion of students will get a grade 4 or above who currently get a grade C or above.

The lower end of the new grade 7 will be equivalent to the lower end of grade A. Approximately the same proportion of students will get a grade 7 and above as currently get a grade A and above in any particular subject.

Although there are fewer numerical grades for the lower ability students, there are more for the higher ability allowing for greater differentiation at the mid to high ability range. Close to 20% of students across all subjects who achieve a grade 7 or above will be awarded the grade 9.
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There are two areas which parents and employers should give careful consideration to. Firstly, the old and new grades are not exactly equivalent. A grade 9 will be more difficult to achieve than an A* in the current system. However, this ensures that the top possible grade truly represents the most able students.

Secondly, five C grades has traditionally been the benchmark to many opportunities. The C grade is now split between levels 4 and 5. This is to align the UK with the average PISA performance in countries such as Finland, Canada, the Netherlands and Switzerland which are often taken as a benchmark of academic excellence.

However, universities are now setting different "pass" grade equivalents. University College London says a C is now a grade 5, while already, Manchester and Liverpool have set the benchmark at grade 4.

Education Secretary Justine Greening says that for school performance tables, the government will publish "standard passes" (grade 4 and above) but also the "strong passes" (at grade 5 and above). It is yet to become clear how universities will view the new grading system.

Ofqual's view
• Broadly the same proportion of students will achieve a grade 4 and above as currently achieve a grade C and above
• Broadly the same proportion of students will achieve a grade 7 and above as currently achieve an A and above
• The aim is that, across all subjects, around 20% of those achieving grade 7 and above will be awarded grade 9, although the percentage will vary between subjects.
• The bottom of grade 1 will be aligned with the bottom of grade G
• Grade 5 will be positioned in the top third of the marks for a current Grade C and bottom third of the marks for a current Grade B.

Chief regulator Sally Collier says students who get a nine will have "performed exceptionally".

Making sure the system runs smoothly
Parents may worry that children taking GCSEs this year and next will be guinea pigs for the new grading system.

Ofqual has taken these concerns seriously and says that these students will not be disadvantaged. In 2016, in English and in maths, about 70% of 16-year-old students achieved a grade C or above and it expects a similar percentage to achieve a 4 and above in this summer's exams.

The full effect of the changes will not be known until 2020 but we can be certain that the new curriculum and grading system are designed to make sure all our students are fully stretched and to raise standards across the board.

For more information, see New GCSE 9 to 1 grades coming soon




24-year-old emerging singer-songwriter Grace Monroe is delighted to announce the release of her debut single Paper Heart ahead of her first studio album The Truth About Love, due for release this autumn

Written by Sussex born Grace, alongside producers OJ (OFER SHABI) and Yaniv Fridel at Soho Sonic Studios, Paper Heart is Grace’s first foray into the industry. The track reflects her ‘all consuming’ experience of love and is melodically influenced by her passion for original material with old school jazz and soul undertones.

With lyrical maturity beyond her years, the young but talented artist takes her inspiration from great musicians past and present, including Etta James, Stevie Wonder, Donnie Hathaway, Bruno Mars, Paloma Faith and Corinne Bailey Rae to name but a few, all of whom have all shaped her sound today.

Grace said: “Paper Heart reflects drowning in someone else's needs of you and just losing your whole being. But not being able to let that person go. My first true experience of love.” The album The Truth About Love focuses on the personal trials and tribulations Grace has been through, expressing her loves, the losses in life, the people she surrounds herself with and her upbringing. “I write songs about my best friend, my partner and anyone else who has had an effect on me - almost a love letter to them with advice and admiration,” added Grace.

Paper Heart is available for download from all major platforms including iTunes, Spotify and Deezer. Plans for a UK tour are currently underway.


Turn up the heat for the Summer’s hottest festival, awardwinning Chilli Fiesta


Three-day family-friendly festival with camping

11, 12 & 13 August 2017 - 10am – 9pm Fri, 10am-10pm Sat, 10am-7pm Sun
West Dean Gardens, Near Chichester, West Sussex, PO18 0RX

West Dean Gardens award-winning Chilli Fiesta returns with a creative flair for its 22nd Year (11, 12, &13 August). The UK’s biggest chilli festival attracts 25,000 visitors who come to enjoy the three-day programme full of food, live music and entertainment. The family-friendly festival takes place in the spectacular grounds of West Dean Estate, in the heart of the South Downs National Park, home to West
Dean College, acclaimed for arts and conservation, and glorious West Dean Gardens. With a sizzling selection of live performances, 140 market stalls, cookery demos by top chefs, garden tours, visitors can expect to party and dance to live Latin music, watch cookery and gardening demonstrations, and dine on delicious chilli foods.

Live Latino music and dance performances throughout the weekend start at 10am on all three days and finish at 9pm on Friday, 10.30pm on Saturday and 9pm on Sunday. Some notable performances for 2017 will include: Andalus; the leading Gipsy Kings tribute band, Kongo Dia Ntoltila, the rumba, afro-jazz band, all girl Rock ‘n’ Roll band; The Daisy Chains as well as The Fontana’s – the Afro Brazilian live band. Big Noise Band, the community Samba Band will be returning by popular demand, as will the steel pan, acoustic guitar and percussion trio - Steel Strum.
West Dean Chilli Fiesta celebrating 20 years in 2015 (9)
Festival-goers will be dazzled by the legendary Latino Strictly Come Dancing professional, Oti Mabuse, as she takes centre stage on Sunday 13th August at 13:15, 14.45 and 16.30. Salsa dancers Debbi and Francisco will be turning up the heat with interactive dance workshops and reigning UK Latin American Dance Champions Ryan and Ksenia will be returning this year to perform throughout the weekend. Visitors can pick up new culinary skills in the Cookery Theatre as they experience live food demonstrations by a host of incredible top chefs and food influencers. Recognisable faces such as Dragons Den’s most renowned entrepreneur Levi Roots, the most recent MasterChef winner Saliha Mahmood- Ahmed and previous Professional MasterChef champion Steven Edwards will be among those offering top tips and demonstrating their culinary skills.

Dan Doherty will be taking the weekend off from London’s renowned Duck and Waffle, where he is the Chef Director, to join in with the Chilli festivities to talk about his latest book ‘Toast Hash Roast Mash’, as well as offering advice to budding chefs and food enthusiasts. Country pub and the Earl of March (in Lavant), along with Henry Herbert from The Fabulous Baker Brothers and West Dean’s Head Chef Dan Frowen, will be revealing their culinary secrets and answering questions during their demonstrations in the Cookery Theatre. Giles Thomson, formally Executive Head Chef at the Ritz London and now owner and Head Chef of The Earl of March will be compering the Cookery Theatre throughout the weekend. Rosie Birkett, chef, food stylist and journalist will also be in the Cookery Theatre and will be putting on interactive workshops in the Workshop Tent as will Kate Morris, who specializes in cookery skills for children. Kate is a co-devisor of CBeebies’ ‘I Can Cook’. Using ingredients from all over the world, these chefs will be sharing their knowledge in an easy and relatable manner, ensuring visitors take away new skills to recreate at home.

Learn the true art of growing chillies with West Dean Gardens’ very own Gardens Supervisor and chilli expert Sarah Wain. Sarah along with her husband, Gardens Manager Jim Buckland, have managed the award-wining gardens for the last 26 years. In their Victorian glasshouses 150 chilli varieties will be on display. In the Garden Theatre Sarah will be joined by another chilli expert from the Chilli Alchemist, who make unique chilli products to compliment all types of taste buds. They will be revealing information about how and why our bodies react to the fiery fruits. Edible Ornaments, the team behind The Cherwood Chilli Ranch, will also be taking to the Gardening Theatre stage along with Sea Spring Seeds, who will be teaching the audience how to pick the perfect pepper. Mark Diacono, award-winning food writer, grower and photographer will be talking about life on Otter Farm and Emily Rae will be giving her top gardening tips. Rachel Seigfried will be in the Gardening Theatre on Sunday at 13:45 and she will be advising the best flowers to grow for intense colour in late summer.

Also new for 2017 is the Hidden Cinema with three screenings a day, including an art film and a children’s screening. Brand new workshops will offer dance, drumming, food and children’s cookery. There will be a selection of bars and restaurants onsite and a wide range of chilli-related food stalls, as well as foods to cater to all tastes, from champagne and seafood to Mediterranean delights. With over 140 stalls, visitors can expect a great variety of quirky gifts available to purchase, from hot and spicy foods of the world to chilli plants, seeds and gifts. All shopping stalls close at 6pm but there will be a range of food and drinks available into the evening as the entertainment continues.
Camping for the weekend
Weekend family-friendly camping offers full top of the range campsite facilities (including showers, flushable toilets and running water). Camping tickets must be purchased online prior to arrival as pitches are limited. The campsite on the rolling West Dean Estate is split into three zones and is picked on the day of arrival: Jalapeno (most popular general camping area, close to the event arena and enhancing the festival atmosphere); Pimento (quiet camping area away from the main arena ideal for a good night's sleep); and Bell (family friendly and close to the toilets and showers). A limited number of pitches are available so early booking is essential.

Book online at:

ACM announces The Keith Lowde Scholarship after another successful Lowde Fest

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In partnership with The Lowde Music Trust, the Academy of Contemporary Music (ACM) is proud to announce The Keith Lowde 2017 Scholarship, set up in the name and memory of Keith Lowde, the founder of ACM’s Music Business School.

Worth up to £27,000, the scholarship will fully fund a student’s journey through one of ACM’s Music Business or Technical Services programmes at ACM Guildford or ACM London, paying for their entire tuition fees for their duration of study, lasting up to 3 years.

Keith Lowde was a leading figure in the UK music industry and his sudden death in a tragic accident resulted in a collective desire by his family, friends, and colleagues to create a lasting legacy in his name. Keith’s passion had always been to help and enable other people to achieve and succeed. He cared deeply about the creative and performing arts, and was instrumental in helping people protect their intellectual property rights, and realise their potential.

Saturday 8th July saw the return of The Lowde Music Trust’s annual fundraising music festival, Lowde Fest, and ACM was thrilled to be involved, with alumni and tutors performing and running the backstage area.

ACM’s Keith Lowde Scholarship offers a life-changing experience for the recipient, enabling them to graduate with a degree qualification, completely free of tuition-fee related debt.

Alongside The Keith Lowde Scholarship, ACM offers a series of other prestigious awards to its prospective students including The Skunk Anansie Scholarship (for Performance), The Freddie Mercury Scholarship (for Artistry) and The BASCA Scholarship (for Songwriting), making their unique brand of music industry education more accessible than ever before. For more information on how to apply for one of these scholarships go to their website here:

Limited spaces are available for September 2017 study and applications for The Keith Lowde Scholarship are now being accepted.



Silent Pool Distillery flew the flag for Guildford’s dynamic entrepreneurial spirit at an international market in Germany last weekend.

The two year-old company was invited by Freiburg, Guildford’s twin town, to come to its biennial ‘Sister Cities’ Market, where representatives from its other nine ‘twins’ - Besançon, Innsbruck, Padua, Madison USA, Matsuyama, Lviv, Granada, Isfahan and Suwon, also had stands promoting their local specialities.

Guildford is one of Freiburg’s longest running twin towns. They linked nearly 40 years ago and it was through the 2016 Mayor of Guildford, Gordon Jackson, that Silent Pool Gin found its way onto the stall in the historic market square. He had taken a bottle of Silent Pool Gin as a gift for his opposite number on an earlier visit to Freiburg and it proved a popular choice!

The Guildford Twinning Committee volunteers served tea and cakes and Silent Pool Distillery director Ian McCulloch and chief bottler Joe Van den Berg presided over a Silent Pool stall laden with their full range of spirits. They even took the trouble to get all their branding and information translated into German for the occasion!

“The weather was lovely, everyone was very friendly and they really liked Silent Pool Gin,” said Ian. “Freiburg is a beautiful city and it was a great opportunity to go there and represent the best of Guildford.”

The Silent Pool Distillers is a new artisan distillery nestled under the North Downs in Albury, Surrey. It specializes in entirely hand-crafted spirits using a range of botanicals – fruits, flowers, spices, herbs – to capture the essence of the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and the bounty of English orchards, gardens and hedgerows. Silent Pool Gin is now exported across Europe and soon to the US, as well as available nationally and at local farmer’s markets. 

The still is powered by a wood fired boiler using logs from the Duke of Northumberland’s Albury Estate and water comes from the spring-fed Silent Pool. The pool itself, just below the distillery’s converted farm buildings, is the subject of wonderful romantic medieval legend. Visit

International Animal Rescue


International Animal Rescue (IAR) is delighted to present ‘A Summer Soiree' hosted by Baroness Soujata Devaris at her elegant home at in Belgravia, on Thursday 29th June from 6.30pm.

There will be a Silent Auction with entertainment by The Massive Violins and guests will be served champagne and canapes.

Special Guests, Celebs and entertainment at the Summer Soiree
This special event will include a musical performance from The Massive Violins (with Grace Chatto from Clean Bandit) as well as guest readings from Downton Abbey's Peter Egan. Confirmed guests include Buzz Aldrin (astronaut), Sir Ray Davies (The Kinks), Steven Cree (Outlander), Lucy Pinder (model) and Neil Morrissey (Men Behaving Badly), Lucy Speed (Eastenders) and Ampika Pickston (Housewives of Cheshire).

Orangutans are listed as Critically Endangered in West Borneo thanks to the effects of mass deforestation and human animal conflict. Alan Knight OBE, Chief Executive of International Animal Rescue will make a statement on the current situation with orangutans in West Borneo and how the rescue and rehabilitation programme of IAR is the only hope for orangutans.

In particular, IAR shall be raising money to help protect orangutans by securing more forest as part of their orangutan rescue centre in Ketapang, West Borneo. This will ensure there is enough space to rehabilitate many more rescued orangutans which can then be released into areas of protected forest.

About International Animal Rescue (IAR)
As human populations expand, wildlife comes under increasing threat. IAR rescues individual animals belonging to species like the orangutan and reintroduces them into protected areas in the wild. This emergency conservation work plays an increasingly important role in the preservation of threatened species.
International Animal Rescue's mission is to rescue animals from suffering all over the world. From cutting free and caring for dancing bears in India, rescuing primates from captivity in Indonesia to sterilising and vaccinating stray dogs and cats in developing countries. Wherever possible, rescued animals are returned to their natural environment but some are provided with a permanent home in a sanctuary when they can no longer survive in the wild.

To book tickets for A Summer Soiree by clicking this link

Opera HIghlights from the Theatre in the Woods


First night dawns in the UK's newest opera house - built in only 11 months!

A new opera house being built across the fields from Cranmore School is too good an opportunity to miss and 13 of our pupils join the cast for the run of Tosca.

Opening night was in a nearly finished theatre built in 11 months with 750 seats, a drum-like construction with a four-tiered horseshoe auditorium based on La Scala, Milan crouched in the walled grounds of West Horsley Place, Surrey.

There were marvellous performances by a star cast including Joseph Calleja, Ekaterina Metlova and Roland Woodand. This will go down as a night to remember for our lucky musicians.


West Dean Arts and Craft Festival

Photo credit: Claire Collinson © The Bowes Museum
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2 - 4 June 2017 10am to 5pm at West Dean College, Near Chichester, West Sussex, PO18 0QZ

2017 West Dean Arts and Craft Festival brings together 200+ artists, makers, writers and performers for the UK’s definitive arts and craft festival. Taking place at West Dean College, the former home and gardens of Edward James, poet, Surrealist and arts patron, the festival will deliver a wide range of dynamic workshops, drop-in creative sessions as well as exciting live demonstration, performances and installations. Browse and buy unique pieces from 120 designers and makers, curated by MADE, and visit the dedicated Print Show.

Visitors will discover the secrets of West Dean House, with its intriguing arts heritage, along with the surrounding award-winning restored West Dean Gardens. The festival will run at West Dean College from 2-4 June 2017. Festival-goers will be able to try their hand at a variety of new techniques by participating in creative workshops run by professional tutors in subjects as varied as stone carving, machine embroidery and oil painting. Artists will be revealing their practice through demonstrations in blacksmithing, tapestry weaving, painting, printmaking and metalwork. Visitors will learn the secrets of etching, watch expert potters turn clay into beautiful objects and follow the Drawing Theatre around the grounds. These will be complemented by insightful talks and theatrical performances around the site throughout the weekend.

The Festival includes West Dean House Opening, an annual event that offers visitors a rare opportunity to explore the Grade II* listed historic house and learn more about the West Dean Collection. Guided architectural tours will run throughout the weekend taking participants on a journey through time from the 17th century Jacobean manor house through to the late Victorian alterations and on to the present day college.

The exhibitions on display include artwork and artefacts from the thirteenth to the twentieth century, combining the acquisitions of two generations of the James family. The fascinating history of West Dean contrasts a fashionable Edwardian interior with the eclectic collection of Edward James – which includes work from the Surrealists and Neo-Romantics. Full-time students will be showcasing their work including: the launch of an anthology of writing by graduates of the MA in Creative Writing and Publishing; installations by Visual Arts students; and live heritage projects from the School of Conservation.

The Old Library, home to an array of antique books, artworks and furniture, will host a series of talks by curators, conservators and artists. One of the highlights will be a talk by Matthew Read, (MA, ACR) about his conservation work on the Silver Swan, the famous automaton that featured at Robots, the Science Museum’s recent blockbuster exhibition. Close to 120 exhibitors will display and sell their work in the marketplace, curated by the team behind the successful MADE London and Brighton Art Fair with an impressive array of hand crafted objects to buy.

Tours of the garden will be led by the Head Gardeners and there will be a variety of drop in sessions held throughout the ‘Hut Trail’, which features thatched summer huts scattered around the gardens. Activities include ‘creating a floral headdress’ and potting up colourful tubs of herbs. Each hut will feature artists and craft makers offering visitors the opportunity to knit, draw, print and craft paper sculptures to take home. The Emergency Poet will also be prescribing poems as ‘treatments and cures’ from her 1970’s ambulance. Artist Caroline Wendling will present her unique grass maze and will be giving a talk on her artist residencies at Cambridge School of Art, Wysing Arts Centre and Deveron Arts.

West Dean Arts and Craft Festival offers plenty to see and do for all ages in a glorious location, plus local food to enjoy throughout. Children aged 5-12 will have their own creative workshops where they can paint, make felt models and learn to work with clay.

Early Bird ticket prices: £10 adult (until 26 May) offering a saving of 20% (£12 on the gate), Children free, Students 16+ early bird £5 (£6 on the gate). For further information and to book tickets and workshops visit

The Holly Lodge Centre

HLC RP Reflections poster A4

Richmond Park Reflections Returns! Pembroke Lodge, Richmond Park Tuesday 13 June

The Holly Lodge Centre in Richmond Park presents Richmond Park Reflections at Pembroke Lodge for the 14th consecutive year on Tuesday 13 June – 7:00 pm for 7:30 pm. As in previous years, we feature an evening of eclectic entertainment collaborated by Kathryn Hide. Ticket includes a welcome drink, supper and wine with your meal.
The line-up for the evening will be:-
Louise Crane – mezzo soprano with extensive operatic credits including Glyndebourne, ENO, and others in the UK and abroad.
Angus Cunningham – accomplished pianist and accompanist, he also plays the organ, harpiscord and clarinet.
Matt Entwistle – singer/guitarist
Tom McVeigh – baritone who performed in various operatic roles including Royal Albert Hall, The Royal Opera House, Scottish Opera and various West End theatres.
Paul Mountain – poet.
Ellie Nunn – singer/actress who has performed in various stage productions.
Yvonne Patrick – soprano who performed in various theatres including Glyndebourne Fesival Opear, Welsh National Opera and Garsington Opera.
Wendy Partridge and Linda Readman - a sister duo who are respectively a classical guitarist and a professional singer who loves jazz and folk music.
Jacki Piper - an actress who has performed in theatres throughout UK and abroad.
Rob Singleton – singer.

To book your tickets visit >>>

'The Art of Travel'



Christian Marsh studied illustration, taking two degrees at the University of Wolverhampton, his home town, where he still lives, but inspiration comes from travelling to faraway places, especially the sunshine of America’s West Coast.

In his own words: ‘The use of photography is very important in my work as it allows me to freeze a moment in time.’

‘I spend time in American cities, like Miami and San Francisco, where the light is pure. I seek out images flooded with detail of shadows and strong light reflections. I like the challenge of detailed urban architecture, but mix the solid architectural shapes with the curved and asymetrical ones of people and nature.

My new exhibition is named after a book ‘The Art of Travel’ by philosopher Alain de Botton. He reminds me that travel is more than sight seeing, it is about noticing people in the street, in buildings and restaurants.’

Unlike many hyperrealist artists Christian Marsh introduces people into his places. ‘They add narrative to the work, raising questions of what they are doing and thinking.’

Art critic John Russell Taylor, who wrote a definitive study of Hyperrealism, says that Marsh is one of the most ‘human, humane of all the artists who embrace Exactitude.’
Exhibition: ‘The Art of Travel’
Dates: 14 June – 8 July
Location: Plus One Gallery, B & C Trafalgar House,
Juniper Drive, Battersea Reach York Road, SW18 1GY
Entry: Free admission to the gallery

Summer Sunglasses

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Get some... LINDBERG Sun

Marrying function and fashion, LINDBERG’s latest high-performance sunglass offering showcases avant-garde riffs on the classic aviator, along with the bold use of cut-outs and floating lenses, all making this Spring/Summer 2017 season the brand’s most daring yet.

In the LINDBERG world ‘off the shelf’ doesn’t exist, as each pair of lightweight titanium sunglasses is customisable and clients can choose their perfect fit with maximum comfort. Here LINDBERG’s legacy of exceptional craftsmanship, high-quality materials and technical innovation stands behind each personalised design.

The LINDBERG Sun collection features the brand’s patented screw-less hinges and the world’s premier ZEISS glare protective lenses – available in a range of hues and tints.
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After purchase, each pair of bespoke sunglasses is then hand finished in LINDBERG’s lab and air-couriered to the client’s optician, who can then undertake the necessary final calibrations.

And at a time when many sunglass brands are lowering the bar in favour of a wear-today, throw-away-tomorrow approach, LINDBERG stands alone as a true luxury lexicon in the eyewear arena.


Bella Vou clinic offers FREE facelift procedure worth £8,500 for new Channel 5 documentary

Bella Vou Concept Facelift before and after

The Bella Vou cosmetic surgery clinic in Tunbridge Wells is looking for a female candidate to take part in a TV documentary for Channel 5. The successful candidate will undergo Bella Vou’s revolutionary ConceptTM Facelift for FREE, including all consultations, surgery and aftercare. The complimentary procedure is normally worth £8,500.

Bella Vou is looking for suitable candidates aged in their 50s or early 60s, who are looking to rejuvenate their face and neck with a complimentary facelift procedure.

To take part, candidates will need to consent to being fully filmed throughout their surgical journey. The filming will include a pre-surgery interview in a social setting (possibly with friends or family), the procedure itself, and a post-surgery follow-up interview.

Successful candidates should be confident and outgoing, preferably with an interesting background story and a strong character that comes across quickly. The episode will be filmed over the course of three days in April 2017, and Channel 5’s ‘Body Works’ programme is due to be aired at the end of June.

The pioneering ConceptTM Facelift is the brainchild of consultant plastic surgeon, Mr Amir Nakhdjevani and recently featured on BBC One’s programme ‘Facelifts and Fillers’. Performed completely under local anaesthetic, the unique procedure has revolutionised facial surgery using minimally invasive techniques that result in full recovery within just one week.

Amir Nakhdjevani, lead cosmetic surgeon at Bella Vou, said: “The ConceptTM Facelift enables patients to be discharged on the same day as their surgery, without the need for lengthy hospital stays. The transformative procedure minimises bruising and swelling when compared to more invasive traditional facelift techniques and avoids the risks associated with a general anaesthetic procedure. By addressing the underlying muscle layer of the face, the ConceptTM Facelift gives results that last up to 10 years.”

To register your interest, simply send a close-up picture of your face and neck taken within the last six months and a short video of explaining your background and why you should be chosen for the free procedure to

Molesey knitwear business suits ex-Dragon Theo Paphitis


Retail entrepreneur and ex-dragon Theo Paphitis has given Molesey based Susan Holton Knitwear a Twitter Boost.

Susan Holton, owner of Susan Holton Knitwear – based in East Molesey, Surrey - tweeted Theo about her business during ‘Small Business Sunday’ and was one of six weekly winners to gain a retweet by Theo to his 500,000 Twitter followers. The weekly initiative, set up by Theo in 2010, now has nearly 2000 #SBS winners and supports small businesses in the UK.

Retail entrepreneur and self-confessed Shopkeeper, Theo re-tweeted Sue’s message to his almost 500,000 followers last year, and as a result visitors to her website: have jumped and her Twitter followers (@SusanHoltonKnit) are now nearly 4,000.

Earlier this month Sue collected her #SBS winners certificate at the winners conference in Birmingham, and at the same time, she had her photograph taken with Theo.
Susan Holton collects certificate at SBS 2017 1500x1500x300
And today’s exciting news, from now on, in addition to her web site, Susan Holton Knitwear can now be found on the exclusive members’ selling platform where hundreds of winners are already selling thousands of products, from unique gifts and bespoke knitwear to pet toys and jewellery. It is another opportunity for #SBS winners to turn tweets into sales.

You’ll find Sue’s knitwear on ShopSBS at:

Susan Holton said, “It is so helpful to have support from Theo, it’s very hard trying to raise the business profile of a small business and it’s great that Theo has recognised our hard work and helps spread the word to his following.”

Small business champion and Ryman Stationery, Robert Dyas and Boux Avenue Chairman, Theo Paphitis, said: “We are thrilled to welcome new #SBS members every week and highlight just how important it is to support our small businesses here in the UK. My vision is that everyone who has ever won an #SBS re-tweet from me becomes part of a friendly club; like-minded individuals who can share successes and learnings. The website and Shop #SBS will also give a valuable profile to the winners chosen and I wish Susan Holton Knitwear every success.”

Susan Holton said “It’s lovely to be part of the #SBS winners club, Theo is very supportive and other #SBS members – who all run small businesses - are a very helpful and knowledgeable group of people”.

Ghost The Musical

Ghost - Andy Moss & Carolyn Maitland - cPamela Raith_

Interview with Andy Moss

How exciting is it to be doing Ghost - The Musical?
So exciting! I did a few things just after I left college but nothing of note so this is my first treading of the boards since then. I’m so excited but it’s also a bit nerve-wracking – not the idea of performing in front of an audience but because it’s such an iconic role. Patrick Swayze’s shoes are big shoes to fill, for sure, and my mate Richard Fleeshman did Sam in the original West End production and he was amazing too. So there’s a bit of pressure but we’ve not gone for a carbon copy of either the West End or Broadway versions.

What was it about this particular show that made you say yes?
Number one, I’m a massive fan of the movie. Number two, I’ve been dying to get back on stage for a while now. I love TV and stuff but there’s nothing so gratifying as doing a live show. Then number three, there’s the music. It’s by Dave Stewart from the Eurythmics and Glen Ballard who has produced loads of albums that I love as well. When I heard the songs I could hear all their influences in it so the whole package of having those guys on board, this iconic movie and the fact it’s a nice three-month tour sold it to me straight away.

You’ve done TV but what challenges does a stage show present?
The main challenge for me is to make sure my voice can sustain it every day. There are some big numbers in it and I’ve been in bands over the years so I can sing, but doing it every night across eight or nine shows a week is a tough prospect. You have to know when to belt it out and when to hold back and save your voice. Also everything has to be cued to a sound cue or a music cue or somebody else’s line or a lighting cue. I’m not used to that in TV. If we move the lines around a little bit because it seems more truthful they’ll usually buy it, but with this you have to be word-perfect. So it’s about trying to hit the marks for everyone else and trying to make it sound like you’re doing it for the first time.

You’ve also done rock concerts but is a musical a different discipline?
It’s so different. I like musicals, don’t get me wrong, but I’d never seen one and gone ‘My God, that’s amazing, I want to be in it’ whereas with this one when I heard the music I thought ‘That’s well good’. They told me they didn’t want a musical theatre singer and a musical theatre voice, they wanted one with a bit of something different to his voice – and hopefully that’s what I’ve been able to add to Dave and Glen’s music.
Ghost the Musical - Andy Moss - cMatt Martin
Why do you think this particular story means so much to so many people?

It’s the everlasting love thing, plus it came out at the beginning of the 90s and there hadn’t been many amazing stories like this. It has a bit of something for everyone in it. There’s the life-everlasting love story and everyone knows someone who has passed on and has that longing to see them again. Also it was when Whoopi Goldberg was at her peak as were Patrick Swayze and Demi Moore. It had a stellar cast and the culmination of that with the fact everyone can relate to the story, because something similar has happened to them at some point in their lives, is why it resonates so strongly. That’s why people love the film and why they come and see the stage show, plus it’s almost nostalgic now, isn’t it?

Can you recall when you first saw the movie and what effect did it have on you?
I watched it with my mum and dad. It was like a Sunday family movie and it affected me because it’s when I started getting interested in ghosts and stuff. It was the first time I’d seen it in a film and it’s not there to be scary, it’s there for another reason that you don’t understand as a kid. So that’s the first time I started thinking about ghosts. Nowadays the shadow ghosts that come at the end of the movie to get the baddies aren’t that scary, but they used to scare me senseless.

What are you most looking forward to about the tour?
I’m looking forward to visiting towns and cities I’ve never been to. That’s going to be exciting, but I’m quite a homebody. If I go out partying or with friends I like to go home at the end of the night so it’s going to be a bit weird being away, but it’s part and parcel of the job and hopefully it will lead to other things like this. It’s got me so excited about acting again and it doesn’t just have to be on TV or in a film, I can go on tour and I go do it in another country. Hopefully this will be the gateway to other things. It’s a great show and a great part and I hope I manage to do it justice.

Mon 27 February – Saturday 4 March
Mon – Sat eves 7.30pm
Wed & Sat mats 2.30pm
Tickets from £17.90 fees apply

You can book tickets by calling the Box Office on 0844 871 7645 (fees apply)
Groups Booking Line 0844 871 7601 or online at (fees apply)
Calls cost up to 7p per minute, plus your phone company’s access charge.

New Victoria Theatre, Peacocks Centre, Woking, Surrey, GU21 6GQ

Looking good at the Races

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Ladies day at the races is a chance to dress to impress and go all out with a show-stopping look. The events are known for pushing the boundaries of formal fashion and see their fair share of celebrities and royalty in the enclosures.

The highly polished look of ladies day fashion and beauty doesn’t have to be restricted to Epsom or Sandown Park – you can take the elegance of the races to any occasion from weddings and garden parties to concerts and flower shows.

The Royal Enclosure at Royal Ascot has an extremely strict dress code, specifying dresses or tops with straps of least an inch wide and banning fascinators in place of more substantial hats. However, races such as Epsom and Sandown Park have more relaxed rules. Although most other formal events won’t have such a strict dress code as Royal Ascot, it’s worth bearing in mind what constitutes a ‘ladies day look’ so you can achieve the right level of elegance at a special event:

• Keep dresses and skirts at a modest length. Luckily mid-length is the length of the season and beautiful calf skimming skirts and dresses were seen on the catwalks of Dolce and Gabbana, Christopher Kane and Stella McCartney.
• Less is more when it comes to baring flesh so avoid strapless dresses and anything too low cut.
• Shoes should be formal and not club wear so aim for courts or stilettos, unless you’re heading somewhere soft underfoot, then opt for wedges.
• Hats should be worn but fascinators or headpieces which don’t have a solid base of at least 10cms are not permitted.

To perfect the gloriously groomed ladies day look, you will need to go beyond an elegant dress and a show-stopping hat and look at the beauty preparation which can take place weeks before the main event. From non-surgical procedures such as Botox to tips for what to wear and what makeup to apply, this guide will help you look your beautiful best.

Non-surgical treatments such as Botox and dermal fillers are no longer taboo and for many women, they are now an essential part of their beauty routine. Botox temporarily relaxes facial muscles which smooths lines and wrinkles, resulting in rejuvenated skin.

Areas which respond well to Botox include the forehead and crow’s feet and it can also be used to soften necklace lines to rejuvenate the neck area for a smoother, more youthful look. It takes around 20 minutes to have a Botox procedure done and you can expect optimum results to appear around two weeks after the treatment, so plan ahead if you would like the treatment for a special occasion.

Dermal fillers plump up the skin to give it a more youthful look, restoring the volume lost by the natural deterioration of fat over time. Dermal fillers lift and smooth wrinkles and add volume to areas of the face that can look hollow as we age, such as the cheeks and around the mouth. Results from this procedure will last around 18 months so it’s an excellent investment which will see you through plenty of events.

Facials can help smooth skin texture and hydrate the skin to create a glowing complexion. Regular facials can help treat and prevent common skin issues such as dry skin, uneven skin tone or acne. A facial before an important event will ensure your skin looks rejuvenated.

There are many different facials to choose from and a dermatologist or aesthetic doctor will help you choose the right treatment for your skin type. A popular choice is a Hydrafacial which is a soothing and non-irritating treatment that combines deep exfoliation and cleansing with a hydration boost and antioxidant protection. Hydrafacials can minimise the visible signs of ageing and reduce enlarged pores by pushing a serum containing botanicals, hyaluronic acid and anti-oxidants gently into the skin. It’s advised to wait for two weeks after an injectable treatment to have a Hydrafacial.
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Smooth legs and a fuzz free face are a must for any special occasion. Waxing is notoriously painful and can cause red rashes, whereas shaving needs to be done regularly as the hair root isn’t removed during the process. If you’re done with the faff of waxing and shaving and want to make a beauty investment you can benefit from for years to come then laser hair removal is the ideal choice.

Targeting specific areas, including delicate areas of the face, laser hair removal is painless and, after a series of sessions, can leave your skin smooth and hair free. 80% of people see a lasting reduction in hair growth after just six to eight treatments.

Popular areas to treat with laser hair removal include legs, underarms and areas of the face such as the eyebrows and upper lip. Eyebrows need particular attention as they create fashion trends in their own right. Natural looking brows are on trend and are much more flattering than severe pencil-thin brows. This doesn’t mean you should let your brows go wild though, some gentle preening with a pair of tweezers or laser hair removal to rid yourself of stubborn hair between the eyebrows maybe all you need to streamline your brows without going too far.

Sometimes no amount of exercise or dieting can shift those stubborn bumps and bulges. Cool Advantage from CoolSculpting is a new technology designed to smooth areas of stubborn fat by freezing and eliminating stubborn fat cells, without surgery. Once the fat cells have been frozen, they then die and are eliminated from the body, creating a sculpted, smooth finish. This technique is especially useful for areas such as the hips, bottom and stomach but is versatile enough to treat stubborn areas of fat around the chin, back and upper arms.

Each area you choose to treat will require one to two sessions and this technology is ideal if you are within two stone of your goal weight and want to get rid of any excess fat. Once these stubborn areas have been smoothed over, you can wear even the most form-fitting dresses with confidence.

Kirsty, Assistant Manager at Leah Durrant Hair Salon & Beauty Re:Treat in Chertsey, Surrey, shares her top tips for keeping your hair in check throughout a special occasion.

“The trick to keeping a hairstyle looking good all day long is to use good products to maintain your hair. I recommend using something like Paul Mitchell Extra Body Daily Boost blow dry lotion or a good hairspray such as Freeze and Shine also by Paul Mitchell. Keep a mini can of hairspray in your bag for quick touch ups throughout the day.”
Leah Durrant Hair Salon
Kirsty recommends planning your hairstyle to fit with your hat, “When you’re deciding what hairstyle to go for, think how it will work with your hat or fascinator, a low messy bun pulled to the side always looks good and is just as easy to wear once your hat or fascinator is removed.”

Kirsty predicts that Spring/Summer 2017 will see the end of the grey hair trend as, “Pastel colours are slowly creeping in fashion, especially peach.”

If you want a classic look that works well, plaits are a great choice for formal occasion as they can be easily topped with a hat or fascinator without messing up the style.

We spoke to Kristina Gasperas, a national award-winning makeup artist based in London, for her advice on how to perfect your makeup for a special occasion.

“The polished look is all about looking fabulous without the makeup appearing heavily applied. It should appear part of you, in complete harmony with your natural skin tone and features.

“The lips can be played up and everything else kept more subtle and minimal, or you can have smoky eyes and keep the lips a beautiful nude blush shade topped up with a touch of gloss for added seductiveness.”
Kristina Gasperas Makeup Artist Ltd
When it comes to keeping makeup in place for longer, Kristina recommends carefully preparing the skin first.

“If the skin tends to get oily, use a mattifying moisturiser; an anti-shine primer – such as Too Faced “Primed & Poreless” Primer; and an oil-free foundation such as Estée Lauder Double Wear. Foundation will stay put if applied with a slightly damp makeup sponge and enough time is spent to work it in so it becomes almost part of the skin. Mattifying powder should then be buffed in all over and the makeup should last all day!

“For lipstick use a long-lasting lip pencil to line the lips and fill them in so that when the lipstick goes on it doesn’t slide away too quickly. Eye makeup stays all day long if a waterproof or long-lasting eye primer is used such as those by Urban Decay.”

Kristina’s number one tip for stunning makeup is all about the flawless skin. Kristina says, “Flawless skin is always one of the most important things to get right. For elegance and polish ensure the foundation is not applied too thickly – layer it in very thin layers and spend time working in each one with a slightly damp sponge. If necessary use concealer to add localised extra coverage rather than going heavy all over.”

Nadine Pyke, a Surrey-based makeup artist operating throughout nearby counties and London, shares her take on makeup for special occasions.

“For a polished race day look there are many ways you can go with your makeup and it also depends on your outfit and hat! One way you could go is daring red lips, accompanied by neutral eye shadow, with a black eye liner shaped into a flick – a totally classic look.”

Nadine also recommends Urban Decay primer to keep makeup in place for longer and recommends avoiding the so-called ‘trick’ of applying hairspray to the face, “I hear this ‘trick’ too often and hairspray is not designed for the face! Use a fix spray designed for the face instead.”
For key trends for spring/summer 2017, Nadine shares her predictions, “Smudgy/smoky eyes are in next year with a pale lip – a classic summer look that will be seen a lot. Also the ‘no-makeup’ look will be a hot trend and is much harder to achieve than you might think. It’s all about the right colour match, flawless skin and the right tones for you.”

Kirsty Dorey, Manager of Brooklands Spa in Weybridge, shares her tips for gorgeous nails. Kirsty says, “The most classic look that is always popular and timeless is the French Manicure with white tips. However, we have seen a trend in the last year for a solid colour with a top coat of glitter. Next year, I predict pastel colours are going to be big again but brighter colours such as blues and greens will also be popular.”

For Kirsty, the key to keeping nails looking lovely for longer is careful application, “Always make sure you take the time to apply a base coat and top coat – this will help to prevent your polish chipping. The OPI Start to Finish is a great one to have in your nail kit as it works as both the top and the base coat! In terms of timing, I always try to paint my nails the night before a special event so I can allow time for them to dry properly before I need to do anything.”

A perfect manicure is not just about flawless nail varnish, Kirsty says, “It’s all well and good having your nails looking beautiful but my number one tip is to look after your hands and cuticles all year round. Use a hand cream every day to keep the skin on your hands and cuticles soft – there is nothing worse than a beautiful colour being over looked because the cuticles are split and cracked!”

When it comes to a busy season of events it’s best to invest in some key pieces that will become wardrobe staples that you can accessorise and mix and match across a number of events.

Dee Brain, owner of Serendipity Fashions in Guildford, Surrey, recommends focusing on a show-stopping hat and building your outfit up from that.

“There are a number of luxury brands that offer very special collections ideal for a special event including Condici and Ispirato for dresses and Veni Infantino for hats. For something less expensive and highly wearable brands such as Joseph Ribkoff, Gina Bacconi or Tina Taylor.

“The epitome of the ladies day look is a fabulous hat, eye-catching colours and a stylish dress.”

A striking hat is the epitome of ladies day style and can ensure you stand out from the crowd at any event. To help you set the tone for your look, we spoke to Farnham-based milliner Beverley Edmondson to get the inside information.

Ginny Marsh Photography
“The ladies day look is all about the hat, no-one will remember your dress or your shoes, but everyone one will remember a well-designed hat! They are a statement piece and they make the outfit. Sometimes a statement dress limits your choice of headwear as the dress and the hat can compete too much, but a simple dress will let the accessories shine.”

When it comes to choosing the perfect hat, Beverley recommends letting your personality take the lead, “Personality is such a huge part of millinery, a hat wants to make the client ooze with confidence to make her stand tall and wear her headwear with pride.”

As the hat is the most important part of the look, your choice of hat should come before you make a decision on your dress.

“Most of the time people come to me with a dress and want a hat to match, but, if you want your hat to make a statement, sometimes it is best to start with the hat, as the dress could end up limiting your choice. Unfortunately far too often people leave the hat to the last minute, which can not only limit choices, but at that point it can be too late to realise that the dress may not work with the hat you always wanted.”

Beverley shares her top tips to keep your hat stylishly perched on your head all day:

• Take the time to fix the hat or headpiece and style your hair around any fixings
• Remember that you can use your hair to hold the hat in place
• Don’t be shy about using copious amounts of hairspray and Kirby grips to fix your hat to ensure it stays in place and doesn’t slip throughout the day,
• I always carry extra grips in my handbag just in case the wind catches my hat or it gets knocked…rather than taking it off and starting again you can just pop in a few more grips!

Now you know how to transform your style into a polished ladies day look you can plan ahead for your big event and ensure you are the picture of elegance from head to toe.

If you’re interested in any of the services health + aesthetics offer then contact the team on 01252 933133 or visit >>>

Weybridge worker completes charity challenges

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Kraig Seymour bravely took on his second charity challenge - a 10,000 foot skydive - to raise money for local children’s charity Shooting Star Chase.

Kraig, 28 from Mitcham in Surrey who works in Weybridge, has now completed two jaw-dropping charity challenges in aid of the Surrey-based hospice charity. Firstly, Kraig braved a 100 metre abseil down the Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth, stating “it looks much higher when you’re stood underneath it!”

Kraig’s next challenge was a hair-raising 10,000-foot sky dive at the GOSkydive centre in Salisbury, in October!

Being a father to Noah, 2 and Willow, 1, Kraig chose to fundraise for Shooting Star Chase - a leading children’s hospice charity that cares for babies, children and young people with life-limiting conditions, and their families.

The father of two, who completed the challenges as part of the new Weybridge Champion Timber branch opening, can still be sponsored in-branch and online at

Kraig says: “The sky dive was the craziest thing I think I’ve ever done. I was really excited to begin with but this soon turned to nerves as the plane went higher and higher! I’m so pleased that my partner and children could come to watch and support me – it meant I had to put a brave face on regardless. I’m determined to hit my £1,000 target so am keeping my Just Giving page open a little longer – please give whatever you can for this important charity!”

A look at London Fashion Week

Francesca Barrow - At Paul Costelloe SS17 Show - Karolina Krasuska _ Everynight Images
Francesca Barrow

The city where fashion has no rules written by the girl who believes it does. There’s a fine balance and personally, I think Alexander McQueen said it best, ‘you’ve got to know the rules to break them. That’s what I’m here for, to demolish the rules but to keep the tradition’. And that he did - beautifully. So I’m always a little sceptical of London Fashion Week because not everyone can cut a suit on Savile Row. Is what I see going to have craftsmanship as the foundation of its eccentricity or is it just going to be wild for the sake of being outlandish with little skill to comment on? I know, I know - I’m old school; I need to get over it but the design prowess that keeps me doing what I do in terms of giving me that thrill as it comes down the runway is that which has quality as its base and imagination as its purpose. So without further ado, here is this traditionalist’s round up of London Fashion Week SS17:

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Paul Costelloe
Sitting front row at Paul Costelloe is like sitting with the cousin of London Fashion Week, twice removed. First of all, his entrance reputably has a grandeur I could liken more to Paris than our own great metropolis. Second of all, his hospitality is well… there is hospitality- bubbles on full-flow until the plastic is removed from the runway. Everyone is relaxed; unlike the usual bustle and sense of exhaustion as the crowd have been from show to show each running late, each a waiting game. This feels more familiar; more like the days when certain designers made their shows into parties. Everyone is chatting away happily - not noticing the time. When the show does begin, I’m transported to Ireland. I am in fact quarter Irish and love this music. Texture is the name of the game. This collection is about reviving linen. I love that idea because I’m all about texture. I’m not all about creases though; I know it’s difficult to great creases out of linen but this is a presentation of a hard-earned collection - I really wish there were no creases. Back to the design though; pretty but it’s not until the first piece that isn’t linen that I really stand up and take notice. What is that? That gorgeous pink-thing. It’s shiny and silky and has kind of an 80s vibe. It’s seriously cute and not a crease in sight.

Manuel Facchini
Manuel Facchini
I wish all of London Fashion Week was just like this. Edge done well. If you’re Manuel Facchini you pick an awesome location like The Mall and host your presentation in a Berlin-style basement which is all sorts of dark with grungy music - and pick models which look like proper models and are eclectic in style gracefully moving and looking into the camera lens completely embodying this mysterious character my mind is already conjuring up as I’m viewing his collection. His clothes are geometric but romantic (gothic) and beautifully tailored. But then if you’re Manuel Facchini you have the background of being art director of the historic Italian fashion brand Byblos - so go figure.

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Aspinal of London
One sometimes forgets that Aspinal of London is actually a fairly young brand as it comes across so British heritage. Their presentation certainly fit this ideal hosted at one of my favourite spots for fashion-things (or anything in fact); Claridges. It’s all very pretty and girly; Peggy Porschen (a blast from the past for me as her shop was just opposite Façonner’s townhouse in Belgravia where I curated my collections) has all sorts of delightful delicacies in the form of sweet things going around, there is tea and most importantly, Laurent Perrier champagne. And flowers. Lots of flowers. It’s all very proper. I am shown around the collection, which is fairly versatile. They have just done something very innovative in launching a collection only initiated three months before with Michelle Dockery for sale now and they are presenting this at SS17. It’s nice for us fashion kids to be able to see something at fashion week and know it’s available right away; usually by the time the collections hit the stores, I’m over it because I’ve already used it in my shoots. Out of everything however my favourite remains anything fairly monochromatic and masculine. That said, they had some fabulous blues. Unfortunately the only bag in this sensational mint green (it’s so hard to get mint green just right) I saw and immediately fell in love with isn’t actually available in that colour and was just for display purposes. Dearest Aspinal of London, if you ever want to make me terribly happy - you know what to gift me (hint, it’s mint green). Love, Francesca.

Julien Macdonald
Julien Macdonald
It might come as a surprise for those who know me; given that my style is classic and I’m all about those Chanel pearls, Manolo Blahnik heels and red lips - but Julien’s show is always going to be one of my favourites at London Fashion Week. Because I also like deeply sexy things and this to me is a show. Hosted at Seymour Street sports centre (more on that in a moment), the bustle outside is one where everyone is looking each other up and down and the cool kids go straight in - yet inside is, as per usual, one of the friendliest spots of the week with everyone talking amongst themselves; bubbles being poured on repeat and cool, bouncy music vibing through the hall. It was the perfect spot for a fashion show - with the gallery floors above giving the space height and massiveness. Quite literally all of a sudden, these two massive football-stadium lights turn on - the music gets even louder and without any real intro or fuss, the first model sashays with all sorts of attitude down the runway. It’s one of those moments where your heart flutters and feels this surge of excitement and you wonder why amidst the strong desire to get up and dance, you also almost feel like crying a little because it’s just so god damn cool. In between thoughts of ‘he’s done it again’ running through my mind, I take notice of the rock n’ roll chic in the form of both guys’ and girls’ getups coming at me; it’s all so alight with ‘boom’ and funk and yet so eloquently beautiful and glamorous simultaneously. And then of course the show finishes with Julien walking down with his typical humility as though it’s all just thanks to his spectators. No, no darling - it’s completely thanks to YOU.

Barbara Casasola
This was true London-Fashion Week style for me. Running from Julien Macdonald past the guards at Brewer Street car park towards the PR girls ushering me in with seconds to spare before the show - running in heels up the car park as a gentleman in a golf-buggie driving effortlessly alongside me says ‘get in!’ whilst onlookers usher me on ‘get in, get in!’ I manage to jump on with my best Bruce Lee style flying move, wind in my hair as he speeds up the ramp - but still don’t quite make it to my seat in time as the lights dim just as I get to the top. The collection was the polar opposite of my entrance - super relaxed, fluid and easy. Very pleasing with chilled out, contemporary and structured yet feminine pieces (Japan meets New York) flowing down the catwalk.

Elmbridge Community Fund


Partridge Muir & Warren is the first local business to support Elmbridge Community Fund

Partridge Muir and Warren (PMW), the Esher based Chartered Financial Planner and Wealth Manager, has become the Founding Corporate Partner of Elmbridge Community Fund (ECF).

PMW has provided an initial donation to ECF along with a commitment to make further donations each year. These donations will be calculated with reference to the annual profit achieved by the PMW Academy Portfolio; an investment fund created to assist in the training and development of PMW staff. The investment fund was established with Company money to enable trainee staff to act as fund managers and learn from both their successes and failures before taking responsibility for clients’ portfolios.

Elmbridge is one of Surrey's most affluent boroughs and often features as one of the best places to live in the UK. Nevertheless, there are pockets of disadvantage in the borough and the Elmbridge Community Fund, part of the Community Foundation for Surrey, was created to target and help those groups and communities that are often overlooked.

Simon Lewis, CEO of PMW said: “The nature of our business means that inevitably, we serve the needs of the more affluent residents of Elmbridge. We wanted to find a way to enable our success to benefit a wider audience and we believe that we have found the ideal way to achieve this through participation in the Elmbridge Community Fund.”

Richard Waller, Chairman of ECF said: “We are delighted that PMW has chosen to support our objectives to improve the quality of local community life and we look forward to their enthusiastic participation in furthering the aims of the Elmbridge Community Fund. We would encourage others to support the Fund so more local communities and people in need can benefit.”

For more information about Partridge Muir and Warren and its services, please visit If you would like to donate to the Elmbridge Community Fund or to find out more, please visit

‘La Vie en Vogue’

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Francesca Barrow, style director and CEO of Façonner, a company which pioneers luxury design, offers essence readers her own unique reflections via ‘La Vie en Vogue’: her insight into the world of business, luxury and life.

September is upon us and I play Eva Cassidy’s ‘Autumn Leaves’ on repeat. A time for both reflection and newness, this is quite possibly my favourite month. Children go back to school, adults return to work and life seems to regain its hustle. We all grew up a little bit during the time we were away and hence return to our normal lives with a sort of secret: the emotions and experiences we had during the break. Indeed, the beauty of September is its injection of new life, with the soft whisper of summer left behind.
Caption- Mansour Bahrami playing at Hurlingham Tennis 2015
Highlights included the Tennis Classic at Hurlingham Club, and the Halsted Design event at Patrick Mavros, which I will cover next month. I’ve attended the Hurlingham Tennis Classic for years, and whilst my best friend and I have an apparent tradition at Wimbledon of spending more time in the members’ enclosure, the Tennis Classic remains undoubtedly that little bit less serious than its big brother. There’s all the anticipation of Wimbledon at Hurlingham. Many of the world’s top players take to the grass courts there and in the words of Kei Nishikori: “Hurlingham helps me with my Wimbledon preparation.” The setting at Hurlingham has an intimacy and tranquillity about it, perhaps thanks to the 42 acres of grounds that comprise the Club. And there is a lot of laughter.
Caption - Me at Hurlingham Tennis Classic next to the London bus! Note the adorable Manolo Blahniks
My favourite match has to be any in which Mansour Bahrami plays. Last year, he told Tim Henman that he was getting old as he artfully spun balls in the air. Although I did somewhat regret wearing Manolo stilettos on grass (it was one of those days where I didn’t feel like compromising any aspect of my outfit and the silver of the shoe was just so beautifully fluid together with my new Ralph Lauren silk blue v-neck), the day was as fun as expected - and probably even more so for my companion who took great pleasure in watching me sink in everywhere that we had to walk - from the courts, to the bar, to the white Marbella-style sofas.

“Mansour makes tennis so much fun. If you haven’t seen him play or ‘perform’ yet, it’s a must! “– Roger Federer

Caption - The outside of Thyme House at Thyme Hotel in Southrop
I also managed to escape to The Cotswolds. My love for this part of England began many years ago and as I’ve grown up, I appreciate it more and more. With my family home being under renovation, I decided it was the perfect opportunity to stay in a hotel just next to our village. Thyme is a luxury boutique hotel in Southrop - home also to the rather well known ‘The Swan’ pub. The village itself with all of its blossoms and streams is perfectly lovely - and the hotel has been interior-designed to a high standard. I must admit what I love about The Cotswolds is its raw charm - and often with the attempt to be modern as is the feeling here, comfort gets overlooked. In this instance, the very contemporary bathroom layouts were rather odd. I’m an older-hander and fairly spoilt having been fortunate enough to stay in some of the most beautiful hotels in the world. I am looking forward to Thyme reaching the standards they adhere to because the staff are all absolutely darling and with a cookery school on-site, it makes for a promising addition to a part of our country.

Alas, back to the bustling city, after all it is September - design week is just around the corner.

essence info
Francesca Barrow is a style director and CEO of Façonner. Her company curates luxury design. Her fashion and interior photoshoots are published internationally.


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The standard tea bag has been around since1904 and hasn’t changed much since it began appearing in kitchens across the globe.

Despite its resistance to change the tea bags has its issues! For one you have to wait for your drink to brew (or mash depending on which part of the country you’re from). Then there’s the consistency problem, with it being almost impossible to make a cup of tea taste the same as the last – change the size of your mug, brewing time or strength required and it’s easy to find yourself experiencing a very different tasting drink to the one you had before. Finally you’re left with a small damp bag you need to dispose of.

After a wait of over 110 years this could all be a thing of the past however, because a teavolution is underway…

No More Tea Bags is based on a new patent pending technology which allows for high quality liquid teas to be contained in an aerosol style recyclable can. This means tea can be dispensed into a mug, hot water and milk added and the perfect cup of tea created without the need for waiting for brewing or having to mess about with and dispose of tea bags.

The most excited aspect of the invention isn’t the convenience the can brings however but the taste benefits, as the product’s inventor, Guy Woodall, explains…

“The convenience of not having to sit around and wait for your tea to brew is a major selling point, but the technology we’ve used enables us to produce a tea with what we believe is a far superior taste to an ordinary tea bag. According to research the average tea bag is brewed for just 13 seconds, which isn’t anywhere near long enough to appreciate the flavour of real tea. The tea we use in No More Tea Bags is brewed for a full five minutes such that a fuller flavour is achieved. All you have to do to get the strength or size of tea you want is add more or less NMTB as required. Whether you want a strong but small mug of tea or a weaker large mug, NMTB caters for your exact needs, producing the perfect cuppa each and every time.”

It’s not just the traditional tea market that No More Tea Bags will appeal to. Alongside Original and Earl Grey varieties, there is also a Jasmine Green Tea in the range. The drink captures the taste of high quality jasmine green tea in this convenient and easy format and, as with the Earl Grey version, is created using leaf tea, rather than fannings.

For further information visit

Ancient woodcraft lies behind Silent Pool distillers new Wry Vodka

Wry Vodka

Silent Pool Distillery has launched a new spirit embodying the key characteristic of the Surrey Hills – its woodland. Prepare for a cocktail with bite!

Wry Vodka is distilled a second time over rye malted specially for the Albury based distillery in one of the last surviving traditional floor maltings in the UK at Warminster. It is then filtered over charcoal cooked in a traditional kiln by local craftsman John Sinclair, creating a unique fusion of ancient skills.

“Charcoal has been made in the Surrey Hills for at least 2000 years,” said John, “But this is the first time it has been commissioned by a distillery for vodka production. It’s very exciting.”
Charcoal burner John Sinclair
Distiller Tom Hutchings visited John at his woodland base in the Sheepleas on the North Downs above Horsley. After a lot of research they chose hornbeam, one of the oldest and most sought after English tree species growing in the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

“Hornbeam is the hardest of our native British hardwoods,” said John. “I selected specific trees and set up the kiln for a long slow 18 hour burn. It rested for a further 24 hours until it was cool enough to be bagged up and then we took it down to the distillery.”
Charcoal burning
Tom said he wanted the vodka to have a style of rye, but with the twist of being filtered over hornbeam: “It’s aimed at cocktails, to give a bit more character,” he said. “It has a tiny bit of bite which makes it more versatile and interesting to use in drinks. And our Wry vodka has a bit more punch than the others.”

So experiment with cocktails using Silent Pool Distillers Wry Vodka for a sophisticated urban take, ironically made using very ancient country crafts.

John Sinclair is a local legend keeping alive the ancient forest crafts in the Surrey Hills AONB – the most wooded area in England. He is part of the Sussex and Surrey Coppice Group sustaining traditional coppice woodland. A fund of information about all things woody, he can be contacted on

Wry Vodka is available from Silent Pool Distillery at