BLOG
Surrey’s Premier Lifestyle Magazine

HOME DÉCOR DISASTERS

BRITISH ‘INTERIOR DESIGN CRIMES’ REVEALED

Toilet rugs, taxidermy and avocado bathrooms named worst home trends of past 50 years.

• Whatever were we thinking? Toilet rugs, taxidermy and avocado bathrooms are among the worst home design crimes from the past half century
• National poll tracking our taste violations shows 1970s was the worst decade for dodgy décor, closely followed by the 80s
• Public voted on a shortlist compiled by leading experts in interior design including Wallpaper*, Ideal Home, House Beautiful and more
• Daniel Hopwood, President of the British Institute of Interior Design, is available for interview
• Appearances matter: six out of ten Brits admit to judging others on their interior design choices, while almost three in ten (29%) rate having good interiors above a clean house
• Almost half of Brits (47%) have redecorated in the past year and bossy partners are a key motivation for why we redecorate
• Survey to celebrate the launch of Samsung’s new QLED TV, which features the ability to blend in with the décor of the home, also reveals the BEST innovations in home design

Don’t try this at home! Toilet rugs, taxidermy and avocado coloured bathrooms – the once commonplace fixtures in our homes – have been crowned the biggest furnishing fails of the past 50 years in a survey of home design disasters. Other style slip-ups identified by the survey to which we now give the brush-off include floral ‘chintz’ furniture, waterbeds and Artex. The research was commissioned by Samsung to mark the launch of its new QLED TV range featuring a unique Ambient Mode technology, which enables the TV to blend seamlessly into the home environment1 thereby eliminating at least one home décor headache – a large, ugly blank screen. A panel of design experts from publications including Wallpaper*, Ideal Home and House Beautiful created a shortlist of the worst interior design trends spanning a period of half a century, which was then put to a public vote of 2,000 UK adults to discover the ultimate home-fashion faux pas.

The top 25 WORST home horrors from the past 50 years:
1. Toilet rugs/furry toilet seat covers – 44%
2. Taxidermy – 39%
3. Avocado bathrooms – 32%
4. Floral ‘chintz’ furniture – 28%
5. Waterbeds – 25%
6. Artex walls and ceilings – 25%
7. Carpeted bathrooms – 25%
8. Rag rolled walls – 23%
9. Tribal carvings, masks and wall hangings – 23%
10. Stone cladding – 19%
11. Animal print anything - 19%
12. Inspirational quote art stenciled on the walls - 19%
13. Carpeted or textured walls - 19%
14. Beaded curtains - 19%
15. Living room bars - 19%
16. Bidets - 17%
17. Round beds - 17%
18. Professional family portraits - 15%
19. Shabby chic anything - 15%
20. Shag pile carpets - 14%
21. Wicker furniture indoors - 12%
22. Wallpaper borders - 12%
23. Curtain pelmets - 11%
24. TV cupboards - 11%
25. Stenciled walls or decals – 11%

The results suggest that our national taste when it comes to interior design is constantly evolving and that some decades fare better than others when it comes to trends standing the test of time. The 1970s was voted the worst decade for dodgy décor in the half century under review, according to 38% of Brits. Some of the biggest design crimes of the period included avocado-coloured bathrooms and flying duck wall displays. This was followed by the 80s (22%), characterised by features such as toilet rugs and pink bathrooms, and then the 60s, with 19% of Brits taking issue with design trends that included psychedelic patterns, lace doilies and clashing colour schemes.

The study also suggests that popular TV makeover shows such as Changing Rooms and Home Front are partly to blame for some of the tragic trends such a rag-rolled walls and stencilling which have long been consigned to the dustbin of interior design history. One of the main interior design quandaries identified in the study revolved around how to display or conceal technology in the home. Indeed, whilst TV cupboards were cited as a key design crime, the appetite to conceal large scale home technology in a stylish way was identified as a key modern-day trend. The majority of those surveyed (60%) believed that huge black TV screens on walls were an eyesore as they stood out too much from the rest of the room.

Not surprising then that invisible technology was named amongst the top 5 best loved interior design trends in recent years alongside open plan living, rustic styling and chic Scandinavian style furnishings.

The top 5 BEST interior design trends:
1. Open plan living (66%)
2. Rustic furnishings e.g. distressed wood, bare floors (49%)
3. Scandinavian/mid-century style furnishings (48%)
4. Invisible technology (37%)
5. Heritage paint and wallpaper (36%)

Robert King, Vice President Consumer Electronics, Samsung Electronics UK & Ireland, said: “We have never been more focused on the look and feel of our homes, and as large TV screens become more popular, consumers want technology that can almost become invisible and fit in with their décor choices. The new Samsung QLED TVs give you just that – with its ability to seamlessly replicate its surroundings so for the first time ever, your TV will blend beautifully into your living room”.

Daniel Hopwood, President of the British Institute of Interior Design, said: “I have lived through the 70s, 80s and 90s and seen interior design trends come and go and it’s fascinating how our tastes have evolved over time. Toilet rugs, rag rolled walls and TV cupboards should all be consigned to the dodgy décor history books.

“It’s interesting to note that six in ten of us think the days of displaying huge black TV screens on walls are dated. As an interior designer I have spent my career trying to hide ugly big black televisions from ruining the style of peoples’ living spaces. Modern technology, like the Samsung QLED TV, featuring Ambient Mode, can enhance the aesthetics of a room, as it blends in with the décor, effectively banishing ugly black screens from the living room”.

Further findings revealed that cleanliness was ranked as the feature which matters most to Brits (47%), followed by interior design (29%) and size (15%). More than six in ten (64%) admit to having made judgments about people simply on the basis of their home interior.

Samsung’s research also revealed almost half of Brits (47%) have redecorated in the past year and a quarter of Brits (25%) redecorate parts of their home at least once a year. When it comes to the key motivation for redecorating, more than half (55%) cited boredom with current look, while one fifth (19%) said they have felt pressured to redecorate by a partner or family member and one in ten said to impress their guests. Meanwhile, 7% of Brits have lived with the same dated interiors for more than 10 years.

The new QLED TV from Samsung signposts a revolution in TV design that matches our increasingly sophisticated interior design tastes – it can blend in with the décor of the home or display imagery when not in use1, effectively banishing the ugly black screens which have dominated our living rooms for so long.

To find out more about Samsung’s QLED TV, visit www.samsung.com

26 JUNE – 22 JULY 2018 - THE KING POWER GOLD CUP

Screen Shot 2018-06-14 at 00.21.39

12 TEAMS FOR THE KING POWER GOLD CUP AT COWDRAY PARK 26 JUNE – 22 JULY 2018

The Draw for the King Power Gold Cup for the British Open Polo Championship was held in the historic surrounds of Cowdray House on the evening of 11th June. The recent signing of Spencer McCarthy’s Emlor team brings the number of entries for the 2018 British Open Polo Championship, to twelve.

Last year’s finalists El Remanso return with the same all-English player line-up of Charlie Hanbury, Ollie Cudmore, James Beim and James Harper. Michael Bickford’s La Indiana returns with the addition of Facundo Pieres, and with Alec White also a newcomer to the side. Nic Roldan continues as the team’s number 3. Past winner Jean-Francois Decaux has a completely new team with Pelon Stirling, Juan Martin Nero and Byron Watson joining his La Bamba de Areco side. Ben Soleimani retains Rodrigo de Andrade and adds Sapo Caset and Min Podesta to his RH team.

Talandracas returns with Hugues Carmignac replacing his father Edouardo and a new line-up comprising Fran Elizalde, Julian de Lusaretta and Alejandro Muzzio. Alessandro Bazzoni’s Monterosso is back with Ignacio and Santiago Tocccalino and the addition of Juan Martin Zubia. Harald Link brings back Thai Polo with Guillermo Terrera, Joaquin Pittaluga and Jaime Huidobro. Playing alongside Spencer McCarthy in the Emlor team will be Agustin Merlos, Diego Cavanagh and team regular Nacho Gonzales. Park Place is the team of Andrey Borodin who enters the Gold Cup for the first time with Hilario Ulloa, Juan Britos and Tommy Beresford.

Three other teams feature young English players. The Alfi Investments polo team of Alshair Fiyaz, entering the Gold Cup for the first time, sees Jack Hyde playing alongside cousins Polito Pieres and Nico Pieres. Adolfo Cambiaso features in Bob Jornayvaz’s Valiente side along with Christian Laprida and Englishman Hugo Lewis. The Murus Sanctus team sees Corinne Ricard, the only woman playing in the Gold Cup, joined by Facundo Sola, Gonzalito Pieres and English player Ed Hitchman.

The Draw saw the four semi-finalists in the Queens Cup drawn and placed at the head of Leagues A,B,C,D. A representative of each team entered in the King Power Gold Cup then came forward to draw a place within the Leagues. Highlights of the Draw may be seen on cowdraypolo.tv. The King Power Gold Cup opens on Tuesday 26 June with Quarter Finals on 14/15 July, Semi Finals on 18 July and the Final on 22 July. The schedule of matchplay will follow shortly. Please visit >>> cowdraypolo.co.uk

ACS INTERNATIONAL SCHOOLS AWARDS BURSARIES TO LOCAL STUDENTS

Screen Shot 2018-05-24 at 14.23.34

18 students from the Surrey and Greater London area awarded bursaries for 2018/2019 academic year and beyond

Following the launch of its new bursary programme last year, ACS International Schools has now confirmed 18 bursaries to children aged 11+, 13+ and 16+ at its three UK schools in Cobham, Egham and Hillingdon for the 2018/2019 academic year.

The bursaries include 13 full awards, with four students aged 11 receiving complete funding to attend ACS International Schools for seven years. In total, these bursaries represent a £2.2 million financial commitment by ACS over the next seven years for recipient students. The awards are made as ACS transitions to a charitable entity and significantly increases its investment in charitable endeavours.

Fergus Rose, Advancement Director ACS International Schools, commented:

“In the spirit of our founder’s legacy, our charitable aim is to advance education and these awards widen access to our schools for students wishing to develop an enquiring mind, an international mindset and a desire to make a difference. Everyone at ACS would like to congratulate all 18 bursary recipients on their successful applications and we look forward to seeing all they can achieve at the schools over the next year and beyond.”

Bursaries were offered to students who would benefit most from an ACS education, including the world renowned International Baccalaureate (IB) curriculum, and do not have the financial wherewithal to attend the school. All bursaries were awarded on a means-tested basis and, dependent on each student’s individual circumstances, ranged from twenty per cent to 100 per cent of the schools’ fees.

Japheth Monzon, an existing bursary student, explained what the new cohort can expect at ACS:

“I used to pass ACS Hillingdon every morning on my way to my old school and wonder what it would be like to attend. After I received my place the school did not disappoint.

“ACS is an incredibly warm and welcoming school, the teachers have been brilliant and I love the intellectual challenge of the IB. It’s more than just the academics at ACS and I also enjoy the global outlook. I know these will help me achieve my ambition of becoming a lawyer.”

Anyone interested in finding out more about ACS International Schools should register for an open morning at www.acs-schools.com/opendays.

Protect Painshill from the A3 land grab

Screen Shot 2018-05-17 at 13.32.48

Supporter of Painshill

First of all I would like to thank the thousands of you who have responded so magnificently to our petition. It is beginning to have some effect and already has attracted over 5,000 signatures. We have also been very encouraged by the number of public bodies who have come to the support of Painshill.

As you know, we have to persuade Highways England to change their plan to widen the A3 to the north of Painshill. This would invade the Historic Landscape at a point very close to the Gothic Tower and the Temple of Bacchus and increase the noise pollution in the landscape. It would seriously effect the enjoyment of over 100,000 visitors to Painshill each year, a number that is growing fast.

We have recently met representatives of Highways England and their design consultants, WS Atkins. They have promised to re-examine their plans now that they realise how important Painshill is and how their plans would damage its special beauty and atmosphere.
We have agreed to meet with them shortly to work with them to preserve the magic of Painshill.

If we are going to succeed in saving Painshill we will still need your continued support. You can help us in three ways:
• If you have not yet signed our petition, please do so now. You can visit our website at >>> painshill.co.uk/A3, or sign the petition when you visit.
• Visit Painshill, it is looking lovely now, and see how the Gothic Tower and the special magic of the Elysian Plains and the Temple of Bacchus would be damaged.
• Tell your friends, your MP or anyone else who you think could help to support the effort to save Painshill.

Thank you for all your support so far. We will need to keep up the pressure until the plans have changed and we know that Painshill is safe.

The Grange - helping people with learning disabilities

Screen Shot 2018-05-17 at 13.22.50

Royal Wedding at The Grange, Bookham

The photo above shows Anissa, Sophie, Louise, Fliss and Mary Anne who attend Creative arts session at The Grange charity in Bookham.

The students at The Grange were putting together a new window display for Grange@No5 gift shop in Bookham, which sells items made by residents at The Grange and decided to design Meghan’s dress for the Royal Wedding. The dress is made of paper, doilies and picnic plates.

It’s not the first time The Grange has made clothes for the royal family. The charity was founded 80 years ago as ‘The School of Stitchery and Lace’ for young women with physical disabilities who made many items for Queen Mary and even a dress for Queen Elizabeth when she was a young girl.

This week The Grange celebrates its 80th anniversary, The Grange is helping people with learning disabilities live independent and fulfilling lives. For more information please visit >>> www.grangecentre.org.uk

Guildford Shakespeare Company - Robin Hood

Screen Shot 2018-05-17 at 13.17.54

14 – 30 June Surrey’s award-winning Guildford Shakespeare Company (GSC) open their 13th Annual Open-Air Season with a brand-new adaptation of England’s greatest legend.

Daring rescues, archery competitions, and sword fights, together with the cries of dastardly Sheriffs and May Day folk songs will fill the air this summer as the first part of GSC’s open-air theatre double-bill bursts into life.

Next month England’s most enduring legend ROBIN HOOD takes centre stage in a brand-new story written by GSC’s Associate Playwright ANT STONES (Grimms’ Fairy Tales, The Wind in the Willows). Whilst featuring all the classic characters – Little John, Lady Marian, Friar Tuck and the Sheriff of Nottingham – this new play takes its inspiration from the original folk tales, including the shadowy figure of The Prioress.

A number of actors will be making their GSC debut with ROBIN HOOD, including GAVIN FOWLER (Penny Dreadful Season 1, Puck in Michael Grandage’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Florizel in Lucy Bailey’s RSC The Winter’s Tale); SALLY CHENG (Twelfth Night, A Christmas Carol, RSC); and JAMES SHELDON (Jean in Miss Julie at Jermyn Street Theatre). GSC regular CHRIS PORTER returns to the company following recently touring with David Haig’s five-star play Pressure. He is joined by PAULA JAMES and ROBERT MASKELL who respectively last played Portia in GSC’s Julius Caesar (2017) and the Porter in Macbeth (2013). The cast is completed by GSC’s Co-Founder and Actor-Manager SARAH GOBRAN.

Director TOM LITTLER also makes his return to GSC, his first since becoming Artistic Director of London’s Jermyn Street Theatre. TOM JACK MERIVALE joins the creative team to write the show’s original songs and PHILIP d’ORLÉANS is once again in charge of the fights. Designer NIEL IRISH (Opera Holland Park, Watermill Theatre, English Touring Opera) also returns.

ROBIN HOOD is staged in Guildford’s best-kept secret, RACKS CLOSE. A former chalk quarry, now beautifully overgrown into an idyllic natural amphitheatre, RACKS CLOSE sits in the heart of the town centre. ROBIN HOOD follows last year’s runaway success of A Midsummer Night’s Dream in the same venue. Rope bridges and tree houses, together with the venue’s winding paths and grass banks promise an unforgettable immersive experience. GSC will also be holding collections for the Guildford North Food Bank at every performance, which seeks to provide temporary help for those in the Guildford area who are in need.

See the GSC website for further details of what items are being collected >>> www.guildford-shakespeare-company.co.uk


John D Wood won the gold award for best in Surrey

close up photo ESTAS

John D Wood & Co. Esher is honoured to have been awarded the Gold award at the ESTAS awards, held last Friday 20 April 2018.

John D Wood & Co. is part of Countrywide, the biggest residential estate agency and lettings network in the country. Nominated for a record 110 ESTAS awards this year, Countrywide was awarded the top accolade of Best Large Estate Agency Group.

Commenting on the John D Wood & Co.’s success at this year’s ESTAS, Paul Creffield, Group Operations Director at Countrywide, said: “I am delighted at John D Woods & Co.’s triumph at this year’s ESTAS and could not be happier for the team, as this award is a fantastic reflection of the effort and hard work on behalf of our customers.

This award is particularly special because the ESTAS are a result of thousands of votes cast by the customers themselves around the UK – and this award confirms that our colleagues live up to our exceptionally high standards of customer service.

This is a huge achievement for us and I would like to offer my sincerest thanks and congratulations to the entire team.”

Hosted by presenter Phil Spencer for the 15th year running, the ESTAS is an independent national award scheme dedicated to recognising exceptional estate and letting agents across the country. The winners are decided purely on the basis of customer feedback.

This year over 36,000 customers contributed to customer services ratings – a measure of just how personal and important buying, selling and letting a home is for people; and how important estate and letting agents are to helping customers achieve their goals.

Countrywide plc
Countrywide is the UK's largest integrated property services Group, including the largest estate agency and lettings network. Countrywide’s network of expertise combining national scale and local reach helps more people move than any other business in the UK and is structured around four key business units: Retail, London, B2B and Financial Services.


Previously-unseen spaces revealed at Clandon Park as the National Trust opens basement to visitors

New protected area looking in to south end of basement

The basement at the National Trust’s Clandon Park in Surrey is open for the first time since the 2015 fire, giving visitors a chance to delve deeper in to the house.

From today, a new walkway in to the basement takes visitors on an atmospheric journey to where the fire started, revealing its full impact on the house, as well as leading them through a new exhibition.

Following the basement corridor towards the south end of the house, the new walkway takes visitors deep in to the lowest, and most fire-damaged spaces within the 18th-century Palladian mansion.

The less damaged north end of the basement will also be on show, as visitors are led to the beautiful undercroft - a vaulted room under the Marble Hall - which pre-fire visitors will remember as the restaurant. This now includes a display, charting the design challenges, and key questions, that the National Trust is considering during the hugely complex project.

Visitors are invited to share their thoughts as the National Trust works with its architects, specialist advisers and stakeholders to develop plans for Clandon’s future.

From the undercroft visitors can pass into a protected viewing area which gives them sight of the full extent of the fire damage for the first time, with dramatic, vertical views from basement floor to scaffolding roof.

Sophie Chessum, Senior Project Curator at Clandon Park says: “Sharing our progress since the fire has always been really important to us. Previous visitors to Clandon Park have been able to visit the Saloon, State Bedroom and Marble Hall, which are amongst the most significant rooms in the house and therefore areas we felt visitors should see straightaway.

“By opening up the basement, we are creating a new space for discussion about Clandon’s future in an area of the house where the extent of the damage to Clandon is at its starkest.

“This is a unique opportunity for visitors to see the extraordinary bare bones of this grand Palladian mansion, in its post-fire state, before access may become more limited further down the line when building work is underway.”

The new basement walkway adds to the existing access at Clandon Park, which includes the Saloon, State Bedroom, Marble Hall and the garden.

Clandon Park is open until 28 October 2018 (including the first May bank holiday weekend, 5-7 May).

For more information please visit www.nationaltrust.org.uk

Summer entertainment on the horizon in Richmond Park

Screen Shot 2018-05-04 at 14.40.43

For those who like to dine out in style, with a generous helping of entertainment on the side, there’s a mouth-watering event coming up on 5 June this year at Pembroke Lodge, in Richmond Park.

Discerning diners are being urged to check their diaries and book now, for an evening of ‘Reflections’ - a flagship annual fund raising- event in support of The Holly Lodge Centre, which is a small but very worthwhile local charity, based in Richmond park.

Music, poetry and storytelling
The Belvedere Suite at Pembroke Lodge has been booked exclusively for the occasion and on arrival, guests will be shown to the adjoining terrace, where they can contemplate stunning views of the Surrey Hills before tucking into a buffet supper.

For this 16th year, there will be music to suit every taste, from operatic arias to boogie woogie blues – and everything in between, including folk, jazz and a smattering of Les Miserables.
On a more literary note, Poet Alison Hill will recite from her collection Sisters in Spitfires, which vividly and wistfully celebrates the women who flew with the Air Transport Auxiliary during World War ll.

Giles Abbott will also be in the line-up. Giles took up storytelling professionally when he lost most of his vision and he has since won much acclaim. His stories are rooted in tradition which he like to bring ‘face to face with now’.

About the Holly Lodge Centre
As well as enjoying a wonderful summer evening, guests will have the satisfaction of supporting a very deserving local charity.

The Holly Lodge Centre was conceived to make learning fun for people of all ages, but especially for those with learning difficulties or other disabilities.

Nestling in the heart of Richmond Park, the Centre provides the perfect habitat to bring nature, science and history vividly to life.

David Attenborough calls small charity a ‘huge treasure’
Patron David Attenborough can be seen on the Centre website as he talks to young explorers and opens the Nature trail, which has since won acclaim as an award-winning feature.
Outside, there are many other facilities, including a well-stocked kitchen garden, stables, a dipping pond, bird-watching hide, solar fountain and an open-air theatre.

Inside, there is a complete re-creation of a Victorian schoolhouse and pharmacy, where ‘pupils’ can experience Dickensian learning first- hand – and a nineteenth century pharmacy, where older visitors with dementia can make authentic Victorian soap.

Over 8000 visitors last year
Although the Holly Lodge Centre only has two paid members of staff, it is supported by an army of over 70 volunteers and many are experts in their field.

This makes it possible to offer an action-packed timetable of activities and the Centre attracts thousands of visitors every year, from schools and community groups throughout South West London.

As there is no government funding, the Holly Lodge Centre relies heavily on fund-raising activities and on donations from local individuals and businesses.

If you’d like to support this much-loved local charity - and enjoy a summer evening of ‘eclectic and exclusive’ entertainment in beautiful surroundings, tickets to ‘Reflections’ are £45. This includes a welcome drink and buffet supper with wine.

To book visit www.thehollylodgecentre.org.uk or contact hlcevents@thehollylodgecentre.org.uk

Sherlock Holmes: The Final Curtain

Screen Shot 2018-05-04 at 14.35.29

ROBERT POWELL AND LIZA GODDARD STAR IN THE WORLD PREMIERE PRODUCTION OF SHERLOCK HOLMES: THE FINAL CURTAIN AT ROSE THEATRE KINGSTON

The World Premiere production of Sherlock Holmes: The Final Curtain embarks on a national tour from Wed 25 Apr, opening in Bath and starring Robert Powell (Holby City, The Detectives, Jesus of Nazareth) as the world famous detective and Liza Goddard (The Brothers, Bergerac, Take Three Girls) as Mary Watson. Directed by David Grindley, this brand new thriller is set to appear at Rose Theatre Kingston from Mon 14 - Sat 19 May.

Sherlock Holmes lives in retirement on the South Coast. He keeps bees, occasionally casts his fly fishing rod, even plays his Stradivarius when the rheumatism allows. All too aware that he’s older and slower, he’s concerned that he might have lost his touch, paranoid that he is an easy target for his enemies – there have been so many over the years. Some of whom play heavier on his mind, namely his arch nemesis Moriarty.

So when Mary Watson (wife of his former associate Dr John Watson) tracks him down to tell him she has seen her long-dead son, James, through the window of 221B Baker Street, apparently alive and well, Holmes is determined to solve the mystery and confront his own demons at the same time.

Chilling, gripping and filled with unforeseen twists and revelations, this new play featuring Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s legendary super sleuth has been commissioned by Theatre Royal Bath from award-winning dramatist Simon Reade previously Literary Manager at the Royal Shakespeare Company.

This world premiere production reunites the dream team of Robert Powell and Liza Goddard following huge acclaim for their performances at the Theatre Royal in Alan Bennett’s.

Sherlock Holmes: The Final Curtain will be at Rose Theatre Kingston Mon 14 - Sat 19 May, see more here LINK

Tickets start from £10 and are available online, rosetheatrekingston.org, by phone, 020 8174 0090, or from the Box Office.

Clifton Nurseries are popping up in Knightsbridge

Screen Shot 2018-05-04 at 14.33.02

Starting Monday 7 May, Clifton Nurseries are delighted to be opening a popup shop in the Fifth Floor Foodmarket of the renowned Harvey Nichols Knightsbridge flagship store and a popup mini garden on the Fifth Floor Roof Terrace.

The Clifton Nurseries Collection at Harvey Nichols will include trending succulents and cacti, beautiful houseplants, inspirational arrangements and stylish gifts for the home and garden – all displayed in Clifton Nurseries’ own inimitable style!

“The Clifton Nurseries’ Team is very excited about this opportunity to bring a little bit of what we love doing and selling to the iconic Fifth Floor of Harvey Nichols in lovely Knightsbridge. We are very proud of our brand and proposition and feel that this collaboration with Harvey Nichols is the perfect way to celebrate horticulture and the world’s greatest flower show which also ‘pops up’ locally in May.”   David Morley - Retail Director, Clifton Nurseries

Open every day from Monday 7 May to Sunday 3 June the Clifton Nurseries popup shop at Harvey Nichols enables you to combine shopping and dining at this legendary store along with a taste of the horticultural treats of Clifton Nurseries.

Clifton Nurseries


A hidden oasis in Little Venice in Maida Vale, Clifton Nurseries is an elegant garden centre with a rich history. Home to picturesque glasshouses, Clifton Nurseries is packed with a carefully selected range of plants, flowers, pots, garden ornaments, garden vintage, and unique gifts and accessories for the home and garden.

Clifton Nurseries has a second branch near Weybridge in leafy Surrey – a unique and exciting garden centre with a contemporary show garden as well as a comprehensive range of trees and shrubs, pots, garden furniture and outdoor cooking accessories.

Clifton Nurseries also offers a full scale domestic garden design, landscaping and gardening service. Clifton Nurseries, 5A Clifton Villas London W9 2PH.
Telephone: 0207 289 6851
www.clifton.co.uk

Style with significance

Screen Shot 2018-05-02 at 12.22.16

Stand out from the crowd with this exclusive ‘Hepburn’ style poppy dress from The Royal British Legion.

Created by boutique London brand Lady Vintage, who specialise in 1950’s vintage styled fashion, the dress combines a timeless ‘Hepburn’ outline with a beautiful poppy feature front panel. Featuring a flared skirt, leather effect belt, high neckline and concealed zip fastening, it will turn heads whether sipping on a cocktail at a drinks party or picnicking in the park.

The dress costs just £39.99 and is available exclusively from The British Legion’s Poppy Shop, www.poppyshop.org.uk, where all proceeds raised go directly to the Legion to help fund the important work they do in providing care and support to members of the British Armed Forces, veterans and their families.

Summer by the River

Screen Shot 2018-05-02 at 12.34.52

FREE SUMMER LONG EXTRAVAGANZA

FRIDAY 1 JUNE – SUNDAY 2 SEPTEMBER

London Bridge City is pleased to announce their summer long spectacular - Summer by the River. With a packed schedule of exciting outdoor events and entertainment running from Friday 1 June to Sunday 2 September it will be the largest free outdoor festival in London.

With stunning views of Tower Bridge, The Tower of London and the iconic City skyline, Summer by the River is the perfect place to celebrate all things summer. This year the site will be transformed to take on a vibrant English country garden theme.

The busy programme will ensure there is never a dull moment down by the River. With outdoor cinema and theatre, big screen summer sports (including Wimbledon, Ascot and the cricket), live comedy and music performances, fun family days, fitness classes and a host of events to let your hair down on a Friday, Summer by the River will be the ultimate London experience this summer. Please see below for day to day themes with the full programme coming soon.

No festival would be complete without a delicious array of food and drink on offer and this year, Summer by the River is joining up with the amazing teams at Flat Iron Square and Look Mum No Hands to offer a constantly changing choice of some of the Capital’s finest street food housed in stunning country garden themed pop-ups.

Kicking off the holidays in style, Summer by the River will be launching on Friday 1 June, tying in perfectly with National Barbecue Week. Expect a host of vibrant street performers, music, and all the sights, smells and flavours of a true British Summer.

London Bridge City’s Summer by the River info:
Dates: Friday 1 June – Sunday 2 September
Location: London Bridge City, SE1 2DB
Nearest Tube: London Bridge

Event Programme Themes:
Monday – Fitness
Tuesday – Film Night, outdoor cinema
Wednesday – Comedy
Thursday – Music
Friday – FriYay!, all singing all dancing interactive events
Saturday – Family Day
Sunday – World Music

For more information please visit www.londonbridgecity.co.uk

Carla van de Puttelaar

Screen Shot 2018-05-02 at 12.25.31

ARTFULLY DRESSED: WOMEN IN THE ART WORLD

THE WEISS GALLERY | 16 – 31 May 2018

From 16 - 31 May 2018, The Weiss Gallery will hold one of its most unique exhibitions to date: 'Artfully Dressed: Women in the Art World', portraits by Carla van de Puttelaar. Sixty photographs of some of the most influential women in the art world today will be shown.

This is an exciting venture for The Weiss Gallery, specialists in Tudor, Stuart and Northern European portraiture. Gallery owner Mark Weiss sees Carla's unique reinterpretation of historic portraiture and costume as an important iconographic re-working of his most beloved art-form - portraiture. It is a visually sumptuous project, and he comments: “I have always been interested in photography, and this project, combining as it does my passion for the human face and form, showcases Carla's genius in dramatically capturing the personality of her sitters in a uniquely evocative way.”

Carla van de Puttelaar's striking photographs, inspired by historical portraits, offer an insight into the women running the international art world, from artists and gallery directors, to curators, designers and art historians. Van de Puttelaar describes the works as 'idealistic', but although the portraits are an attempt at aesthetic perfection through the lens of traditional iconography, yet they subvert that very trope. The theme in itself is a challenging feminist statement at a time when gender equality in the workplace and the art world is in the news. Carla questions what constitutes female beauty, power and by extension, vulnerability.

Van de Puttelaar's photographic work has gained global recognition, and she has exhibited in numerous museums and galleries around the world. Her work has also been featured in significant publications such as The New York Times Magazine and The New Yorker. Carla has always had a keen interest in portraiture and photographs her sitters in natural light, with very dark, Caravaggesque backgrounds. There is an intensity to her portraits, and she describes her work as recording a specific, momentary expression, be it emotional or powerful, but always individual.

Among the sitters are Maria Balshaw CBE, Director of the Tate Art Museums and Galleries; Fashion historian Amber Butchart; Emilie Gordenker, Director of the Mauritshuis; Lidewij de Koekkoek, Director of the Rembrandt House Museum; Catharine MacLeod, Curator of 17th Century Portraits at the National Portrait Gallery; Hanna Klarenbeek, Curator at the Paleis Het Loo; Aileen Ribeiro, Fashion Historian and Costume Expert; Jennifer Scott, Director of the Dulwich Picture Gallery; Diana Scarisbrick, pre-eminent Jewellery Historian; Burcu Yuksel, Art Consultant and Dealer; Miho Kajioka, Photographer; Fariba Farshad, Director of Photo London and Roxana Halls, Artist, among others. They are dressed in haute couture, by famous designers such as Iris van Herpen, Jan Taminiau and Claes Iversen, vintage and period costume, or wrapped in sumptuous historic fabrics by Watts of Westminster. Carla describes her sitters as: 'Powerful, beautiful and so bright…'

As well as being a respected photographer, Carla van de Puttelaar is an Art Historian who gained her PhD from Utrecht University specialising in 17th Century Scottish portraiture. She studied at Gerrit Rietveld Academy to become a Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Photography. Carla lives and works as an artist in Amsterdam, and has lectured at various institutions including the Royal Academy of Art in The Hague. Her wealth of knowledge and experience has allowed her to build a strong network of friends and colleagues in the art world, forming the inspiration for her prestigious list of sitters for The Weiss Gallery's exhibition.

For more information please visit www.weissgallery.com

Trial and Review Invitation

b6a4e9ae-8e16-417f-a3fc-2af2dc1cf2ea

Award Winning Angela Langford Bloom & Glow Face Oil

With their expert team of lab technicians testing hydration rates and their army of independent testers looking at performance, Angela Langford's Bloom & Glow face oil scored an impressive 91/100.

Not only that, Bloom & Glow came first out of 25 other facial oils, among them some enormous high street beauty and spa brands, including the likes of Murad, Elemis, Eve Lom, Caudalie, REN and ESPA.

This was the GHI Expert's verdict on Bloom & Glow...
"This product received brilliant feedback and scored extremely well across the board, especially for how smooth it left skin. Many testers found that they only needed a small amount of product, which absorbed easily and left skin feeling silky smooth."

Bloom & Glow radiance restoring face oil, chia seed & sea buckthorn

Vegan, cruelty free, organic, natural - and lovingly hand made in Somerset

Angela says...
"Perfect for sensitive, easily inflamed or generally out of kilter. This is your recipe gorgeous, glowing, radiant skin."

Chia seed & sea buckthorn are blended together to deliver high levels of essential fatty acids, vitamins & antioxidants - it improves skin’s elasticity, calms inflammation & restores radiance.

If you would like to receive a bottle of this award-winning oil for trial and inclusion, please don't hesitate to contact Amanda Strutton at Snowball Media Relations: amandastrutton@yahoo.com or call 07795 005053

Get set to grow at RHS Garden Wisley’s Family Gardening Festival

Screen Shot 2018-04-20 at 16.11.33

Fun-packed event runs from 26 May to 3 June

To celebrate the start of the warmer months, the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) Garden Wisley is hosting a fun-packed Family Gardening Festival, from 26 May to 3 June 2018.

Running during May half-term, the family event has a ‘Get Set, Grow!’ theme, with a wide variety of activities taking place throughout the week. Kids can get hands-on with garden themed activities and crafts, such as sow and grow workshops, potato and spoon races, face painting, and tree climbing. There will also be puppet shows, storytelling sessions, a ‘Vegetable Olympics’ and a ‘Mole Hill’ area with pedal-powered tractors. Additionally, fascinating Birds of Prey demonstrations will take place on Seven Acres at 11am and 2pm on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 May.

As visitors walk around the Festival and take in the horticultural highlights of the season, they can gain expert advice from the RHS Science Team. Exhibitors include the National Vegetable Society and Surrey Bees, who will provide honey tastings, bee-themed activities and have a variety of wax products for sale.

While at the Family Gardening Festival, families can go on a garden adventure trail, sponsored by Honda, to look for the hidden Miimos - Honda’s clever robotic lawnmowers – along the way.

Take a break to refuel during the Festival with a tasty bite to eat, including ice cream and barbequed treats. There is also plenty of room to enjoy a family picnic in the great outdoors.

Normal garden entry applies; events and activities are suitable for all the family. For further information and to view the daily programme of activities, visit www.rhs.org.uk/gardens/wisley.

City of London Wealth Management Awards

team cropped

National Garden Scheme (NGS) hPartridge Muir & Warren crowned family office of the year

This years’ City of London Wealth Management Awards local Esher based Chartered Financial Planner and Wealth Manager, Partridge Muir & Warren (PMW), with the prestigious title of Family Office of the Year.

The ceremony was conducted at the prestigious Guildhall in the heart of the City. Following their nomination, they faced fierce competition from larger businesses, notably Killick & Co and Hottinger, but the over-whelming support of their loyal clients carried them to victory. CEO, Simon Lewis, was there to collect the award, accompanied by CFO, Kellianne Banham, and Head of Marketing, Ceris Hymas.

Simon Lewis said “I am incredibly proud of my team right now, because it is their dedication and excellence that has inspired our loyal clients to vote for us. We pride ourselves on teamwork and although I am privileged to be receiving this award tonight on behalf of the Company, I am accepting it on behalf of each and every one of our team.”

PMW has been dedicated to looking after the wealth of families and individuals since 1969. Ceris Hymas said “It is as a real honour to receive a national award that recognises our commitment to providing a comprehensive and attentive service to clients, who are situated both locally and throughout the UK.”

For more information about Partridge Muir & Warren you can visit www.pmw.co.uk or call 01372 471550.

Record £3.1million donation!

8c005d8a-231b-42ba-a212-5ff0797e8f81

National Garden Scheme (NGS) has made a record donation of £3.1million from funds raised at garden openings in 2017

This year their beneficiaries include Macmillan Cancer Support, Marie Curie, Hospice UK, Carer's Trust, Queen's Nursing Institute, Parkinson's UK, Perennial and MS Society.

Donations to charities who actively promote the health benefits of gardens have been increased this year and include two new beneficiaries - Leonard Cheshire and Maggie's Centres. This year's donation to Macmillan Cancer Support also marks an ambitious five year partnership to fund a new specialist cancer care unit at Y Bwthyn in South Wales.

They would like to thank all their garden owners, volunteers and garden visitors for their amazing support, and for their record-breaking fundraising. Read more on their website here >>> www.ngs.org.uk

Wood Engravings by Anne Desmet and Friends

369a20a1-6e49-4e08-924f-c186bab3b38f

Exhibition: 5 May - 23 June 2018

Printmaker Anne Desmet RA will curate an intimate exhibition of contemporary wood engravings at Kevis House Gallery in Petworth, West Sussex. Anne Desmet is one of only three wood engravers to be elected as Academicians in the Royal Academy's 250-year history.

The show will feature the work of six artists; Anne Desmet RA, Neil Bousfield, Edwina Ellis, Peter Lawrence, Peter S Smith and Roy Willingham.

“What I hope to create is a sense of six mini solo exhibitions, each one bringing out some of the abiding threads in each artist's work." Says Desmet. "Although all of the artists regularly exhibit with the Society of Wood Engravers, none of the works shown here has ever previously been exhibited by the Society of Wood Engravers, so they will offer a wealth of unseen delights to even the most assiduous devotee of wood engraving exhibitions. All the engravings shown will offer key insights into the ongoing, long-held interests of each engraver and all are works that each artist considers seminal in their expansive oeuvre.”

Neil Bousfield is a younger artist whose engravings started out as imagery in self generated novels without words, following in the grand tradition of Frans Masereel and Lynd Ward and bearing striking similarities to the characteristic noir atmosphere of Ward's 1930's engravings. More recently Bousfield has experimented with subtle overlays of printed colour, tone and pattern, developed from vigorous, keenly observed drawings of beaches, harbours and landscape near his home in Norfolk, coupled with imaginative aerial views, contours and geography of Ordnance Survey maps. “ The work here explores the notion of place and home encapsulated through experience, memory and narrative,” says Bousfield “made tangible within drawing and engraving."

Anne Desmet RA's chooses architectural motifs as her subject matter. However whilst her engravings depict specific places, they are also intended to represent something universal; the way light brings life to a subject; the way apparently permanent structures are poignantly prone to the ravages and redevelopments of time, weather and human intervention. Her interests also spreads into what our buildings tell us about mankind's great aspirations, follies, passions and humour.

Desmet enjoys playing with shape, form and structure - to break down and rebuild existing structures into invented or more abstract forms through the medium of collage. These small scale, highly detailed works which take, often, many weeks to create, may evoke in the viewer a sense both of timelessness or of the passage of time - or both ideas simultaneously. These are the abiding thoughts and threads that have connected her prints and collages since her first tentative engravings (in the mid 1980s) to today, whether their subject is ancient Rome London's Olympic site, Brooklyn Bridge, a derelict neo-classical interior or Eton College.

Edwina Ellis established her reputation with meticulously wrought, observational, landscape and still life engravings. Recently PhD studies have led her to experiment "with colour and compound engraving and printing and continue to augment the modular collection of engravings, vinyl cuts and linocuts developed during this research. My current aim," Ellis says, "is to harness and combine the techniques I have developed in the belief that experimental journeys close in on what it's all about."

Closer looks at Ellis's work shows a strong sense of the abstract within the particular, a sense of layering and an intricate textile reminiscent of woven textiles.

Peter Lawrence's engravings have long celebrated the glorious abstract potential of the wood engraving medium at a time when many other British practitioners stayed firmly within the figurative tradition of Bewick.

"Dark Corners, is one of the first completely abstract prints. Working from an outline drawing of forms, the engraving is largely improvised. Other prints are abstracted from life, or combine a series of differently styled engravings with an abstract form, sometimes using multiple blocks to resemble collage." says Lawrence.

Peter S Smith's engravings, like Edwina Ellis's, have a strong textural quality and a pervading sense of the abstract within the particular.

"On sunny days, while waiting for the train. I draw my shadow across the station: some of the drawings become engravings."

Smith's engravings are fascinating both as semi-abstract compositions in light and shade but also because the character of each engraved mark and the combination of marks he makes are unpredictable and unexpected.

Roy Willingham has long been concerned with the fine balance between the figurative and the abstract. His starting point is often meticulously observed drawings yet many diverse influences including Russian Constructivist graphics, Edward Wadsworth's Dazzle Ship engravings, Picasso, Matisse and a vibrant yet finely calibrated sense of colour and tone have long invested his work with great energy and originality. They are truly miniature marvels.

Refering to his print Downland, Willingham says "This print derives from the memory of a walk over the South Downs from Hassocks to Lewes and a solitary tree near Ditchling Beacon standing out against the emptiness of the downland landscape."

Kevis House Gallery hosts the Society of Wood Engravers Annual Exhibition each year (next held November - December 2018). The gallery holds a large collection of work by the wood engraver Gwenda Morgan (1908 - 1991). Kevis House also exhibits pictures by a range of contemporary artists.

For more information please visit www.kevishouse.com

Eggcellent

The Children's Trust Easter Fair Eggs

An ‘Eggcellent’ day out for the whole family – The Children's Trust Easter Fair

Promising enough chocolate eggs to feed the whole of Surrey, The Children’s Trust annual Easter Fair returns on Saturday 31 March. Taking place at the charity’s specialist centre in Tadworth between 12 and 4pm, this event is one not to be missed.

Family fun includes the much-loved Easter egg hunt, an Easter themed market, Easter egg decorating, Wacky Wheelers mini-tanks, ponies, fairground rides, raffles and more. Local band Atlantis will also be entertaining crowds with music throughout the day.

Last year the event raised more than £6,000 and it is hoped that this amount will be beaten with the fantastic attractions and games on offer for families from across Surrey and Sussex who attend. All proceeds from the event go to The Children's Trust, supporting children and families affected by brain injury and neurodisability.

FREE entry for children (under 16), £3 for adults. Book now, www.thechildrenstrust.org.uk

About The Children’s Trust
Every year 40,000 children in the UK are left with a brain injury as a result of an accident or illness and many have to live with ongoing, long-term difficulties. The Children’s Trust gives children and young people with brain injury and neurodisability opportunities to live the best life possible, by providing specialist rehabilitation, education and community services across the UK. For more info please visit: www.thechildrenstrust.org.uk

Next Generation Noodles

oomi_Noodle

Now available in Tesco and Sainsbury’s stores, oomi noodles offer a functional convenience food like no other and provide a product that is both healthy and tasty.

Whilst low carbohydrate noodles have been on the market for a few years oomi take things to a new level. Not only do they provide a low carbohydrate noodle that has the same bite and taste as a high quality fresh noodle, but one that is also gluten free and bursting with lean protein.

With nearly 13g of high quality protein per serving, oomi provide a low carbohydrate, gluten free noodle with a difference, which will appeal to anyone living an active and healthy lifestyle. Whilst the carbohydrate levels are 75% fewer than your average chilled egg noodle, their superior protein source, sustainably sourced white fish, provides important nutrition to support exercise. oomi don’t just differ from other noodles on the nutrition front. Current low carbohydrate and gluten free noodles often rely on a watery pack environment, which oomi’s patented production method avoids, presenting a finished product indistinguishable in taste and texture to a classic fresh noodle. As with fresh noodles, oomi also offer a high level of convenience. Available in ‘snap- pack packaging’, providing two individual portions, they can be thrown in a wok, heated in a microwave and even eaten cold from the pack in vibrant salads. Basically, everywhere you use a noodle, use an oomi noodle!

Most importantly oomi noodles taste great and their combination of quality protein and noodle convenience creates a delicious food with purpose.

To find out more please visit >>> www.oominoodles.com


Jumbo Welcome

Image-1

101 artist designed elephants enter the City of Mumbai through the Gateway of India

Politicians, celebrities, artists and designers came together at the Gateway of India Mumbai, where a stunning display of 101 artistic elephants were assembled to celebrate the launch of the first ever Elephant Parade India. The elephants will be paraded across the city in a series of public art exhibitions and simultaneously be sold at an online auction on Paddle8, online auction partner, going live on Wednesday 28 February 2018.

Shri Devendra Fadnavis, Hon'ble Chief Minister of Maharashtra inaugurated the parade with Smt. Maneka Gandhi, Hon'ble Minister of Women and Child Development & Founder, People for Animals and Smt. Poonam Mahajan, Hon'ble Member of Parliament (Lok Sabha) and Parade Ambassador.

The inauguration was attended by key supporters of Elephant Family including Natasha Poonawalla, Vikram Goyal and Beenu Bawa along with artists, designers and celebrities including Rohit Bal, Ashiesh Shah, Michelle Poonawalla, Aradhana Seth, Mozez Singh, Mehr Rampal, Dhruvi Acharya, Pranab Das, Jennifer Winget and Sehban Azim . Dr Sandeep Kr Tiwari, of the Wildlife Trust of India - Elephant Family’s biggest conservation partner and the organisation pioneering the 101 corridor solution for India’s elephants also attended.

Created as part of the UK India Year of Culture, Elephant Parade India is organised by Elephant Family in association with Good Earth and in partnership with the Wildlife Trust of India. The sales generated through the online auction will raise funds to secure 101 crucial Indian elephant corridors, the pathways that elephants depend upon to get from one forest feeding ground to the next.

The exhibition dates and venues across the city of Mumbai include:
March 2-6: Priyadarshini Park
March 2-6: Shri Siddhivinayak Mandir
March 2-6: High Street Phoenix Lower Parel
March 2-6: Sophia’s College for Women
March 2-6: Radio One office Lower Parel
March 3-7: Worli Sea Face
March 8-11: R City mall Ghatkopar, Phoenix Market City Kurla, Grand Hyatt-Kalina
March 14-18: Carter Road beach and amphitheatre; Bandra Fort; Infiniti Malls Malad & Andheri; Oberoi Mall; Taj Land’s End, Bandra; Bombay Art Society, Bandra

Ruth Ganesh, Trustee Elephant Family said: “We dreamed of the Gateway of India to launch our herd and never quite believed it would come true. Today made us feel like children in a sweet shop on a sugar high. Thank you and get ready Mumbai - these elephants will bring you so much joy.”

Poonam Mahajan, Parade Ambassador added: “Having worked as an environmentalist and animal lover for so long, I was thrilled to be approached by the Elephant Family to support the same cause which we have been working on with People for Animals for Asiatic Elephants. It’s important to us as over the past 100 years we’ve lost 90% of Asian Elephants, and now as nature, the environment and human beings all co-exist together, awareness is now coming, and it is time for action. By showcasing these beautifully painted 101 elephants by renowned artists and designers all across the city of Mumbai we are bringing everyone together to increase that awareness. Through this initiative we’d like to raise significant funds to help India’s 101 corridors for elephants, and build the crucial rescue centres around the forests that are so needed. This wonderful art exhibition we have launched is the first step and the exhibition is open to all Mumbaikars .”

Please visit www.elephant-family.org

Painshill - We need help

image004

Protect Painshill from A3 Land Grab

Highways England are proposing a number of changes to the M25 & A3 roads which will have a major negative impact on Painshill (Grade 1 listed 18th century landscape garden). Highways England’s proposed preferred development will ‘grab land’ from Painshill, meaning areas of the landscape will be lost forever under the development of the ever increasing road network.

Painshill Park Trust is calling on Highways England to reject its current ”Preferred Route” and return to the project design phase so that the safeguarding of the historic Park can be included in the design criteria.

Michael Gove, CEO of Painshill comments; “Painshill is one of the most important, significant and historic landscape gardens in the country. After 35 years of restoration, we’re calling on members of the public to support and help protect this much loved part of Britain’s Heritage from the A3 road development.”

Members of the public are able to sign and support the petition if they believe Painshill should be protected from the development of the A3 so it can continue to be enjoyed by future generations.

Why we need help
Painshill Park Trust seeks to safeguard parts of the much loved landscape garden, and protect it from this road development. Highways England’s preferred development will take large parts of land that runs past the Gothic Tower (built 1750’s) and destroy a high number of trees from the ancient woodlands.

To read more and sign the petition please visit >>> www.painshill.co.uk


Mother’s Day Weekend at RHS Gardens and Partner Gardens

RHSWisley

Delight in the joys of spring and treat Mum to an inspiring day out at RHS Gardens and Partner Gardens this Mothering Sunday

Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 March 2018 At the four RHS Gardens and dozens of RHS Partner Gardens around the country, there are plenty of ideas for spending quality time with Mum in beautiful surroundings this Mother’s Day. Seek out cheerful signs of spring around the gardens, take part in inspiring workshops or indulge in the sweet tradition of tea and cake and give Mum a day to remember.

At RHS Garden Rosemoor, mums can enjoy a special Afternoon Tea on Saturday 10 March, including cakes, sandwiches and a traditional Devonshire cream tea, served to a table in the small Garden Room. The Garden Room will also host a demonstration of paper flower-making and everyone can take home a free gift of a beautiful paper peony. Mother’s Day Afternoon Tea is £20 per person and must be booked ahead online. On Sunday 11 March, the award-winning Rosemoor Garden Kitchen will be serving its famed Sunday Carvery menu, packed with the finest locally-sourced and homegrown produce – booking is advised.

Don’t miss one of the biggest celebrations of spring-flowering plants at the Spring Flower Competitions on Saturday 10 and Sunday 11 March, with classes including camellias, early magnolias, rhododendrons, daffodils and hyacinths. Enjoy a sensual feast of colour and scent examining some of the finest specimens from growers across the country before taking a stroll around the garden to see Rosemoor’s own camellias, rhododendrons and daffodils bringing the garden to life.

RHS Garden Harlow Carr will be a welcoming sight, awash with beautiful spring colour as many varieties of early-flowering bulbs including daffodils, tulips, muscari, hyacinth and iris burst into flower. Stop by Bettys Cafe Tea Rooms for lunch to enjoy home-cooked dishes with a Swiss influence, or a traditional afternoon tea of sandwiches, cakes and pastries for £19.95 – or for £27.95 add pink Champagne to make it an extra-special treat for Mum.

Over in Essex at RHS Garden Hyde Hall, explore the garden as the spring season bursts into life before rewarding mum with a delightful afternoon tea for £12.95 per person (booking essential) on Sunday 11 March. Alternatively, book Mum onto the ‘What Now? Your Garden in March and April’ workshop on Saturday 10 March and inspire her to get into the garden. RHS experts will guide attendees through staking, planting, lifting and dividing of seasonal plants with practical techniques demonstrated in the garden from 11am to 1pm.

Meanwhile, at RHS Garden Wisley the Terrace Room will open specially for Mother’s Day, with either a two-course lunch or a sumptuous afternoon tea available at £25 per person (book in advance by emailing preferred time and numbers to wisley@companyofcooks.com), including a complimentary gift for Mum. A walk around the garden to see the beauty of early spring blossom and bulbs in flower is the perfect way to work up an appetite.

In addition, Saturday 10March sees the Orchid Society of Great Britain Spring Show in the Glasshouse Gallery at Wisley, where experts and growers will be on hand with advice and quality orchids to buy. A treat for any orchid fans, this show offers an opportunity to learn about more unusual species and see beautiful displays created by OSGB members.

Elsewhere around the country, many RHS Partner Gardens have exciting events planned for the Mother’s Day weekend, and RHS members can visit for free on selected days. On Saturday 10 March at A Weekend for Mum at Penshurst Place in Kent, kids can make special cards for Mum, and adults can learn to make scented gifts on Sunday 11 March. In Norfolk, Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden’s head gardener Ian Guest will take families on a guided tour of the garden after which each mother will receive a primrose.

On the outskirts of London, take a stroll around the grounds in search of spring beauty at Osterley Park before tasting wines, juices, jams and curds in the Brewhouse coffee shop. Meanwhile, at Compton Acres in Dorset both RHS Members and mums can enjoy the gardens for free, and there’s a potted plant gift for every mum who is treated to Sunday lunch.

Other RHS Partner Gardens open for free to RHS Members on Mother’s Day include:
• The Dorothy Clive Garden, Shropshire
• Tatton Park, Cheshire
• Kilver Court Garden, Somerset
• East Ruston Old Vicarage Gardens, Norfolk
• Larch Cottage Nurseries, Cumbria
• Tylney Hall, Hampshire
• Waterperry Gardens, Oxfordshire
• Batsford Arboretum, Gloucestershire
• Godinton House and Gardens, Kent
• Waddesdon Manor, Buckinghamshire
• Scone Palace, Perthshire

For more information about Mothers day and other events at RHS Wisley please visit >>> www.rhs.org.uk

Guildford Shakespeare Company

Screen Shot 2018-02-09 at 17.54.00

SHAKESPEARE’S BIRTHDAY BASH RETURNS FOR 7th YEAR!

Now in its 7th year, WILL’S BIRTHDAY BASH is Guildford Shakespeare Company’s annual celebration of William Shakespeare birthday, 23 April 1564. Will’s Birthday Bash has always been a sell-out event, and once again the award-winning theatre company have lined an exciting programme to mark the occasion, kicking off with their 7th SONNET WALK WEEKEND (21-22 April). Akin to a treasure hunt, the Sonnet Walks take audiences on a mystery walking-tour where walkers will encounter Shakespeare and his characters in the least likely of places. In previous year years, the especially designed route has included the roof of House of Fraser, a fortune teller in Rack’s Close, a prisoner in the Castle Keep, and last year St Catherine’s Ruin and a field of sheep!

This year, GSC are very excited to announce a brand new venue for the walks – the historic West Horsley Place. The Grade I listed manor house and surrounding estate were inherited by Bamber Gascoigne, who has set up a charity, The Mary Roxburghe Trust, to rescue and restore West Horsley Place and to establish there a vibrant centre for the performing and visual arts and for the teaching of crafts. The incredible house and grounds will be taken over by actors for the weekend, allowing audiences to discover not only fabulous speeches and sonnets from Shakespeare, but also this magnificent home once visited by Elizabeth I.

The Bash continues with a special staged reading of Shakespeare’s THE TWO NOBLE KINSMEN, on Wednesday 25 April. Based loosely on Chaucer’s Knight’s Tale, this collaboration with John Fletcher is pure Jacobean drama with dark sibling rivalry, unrequited love and deception…it also includes a group of amateur actors (harking back to the successes of Dream?) and... wait for it... a baboon! Following the sell-out staged readings of Pericles, Cymbeline and Henry VIII, join us for another of Shakespeare’s rarely performed plays.

The final event in the Bash is GSC’s flagship youth theatre, the GSC YOUNG COMPANY, second public performance (29-30 April). Devised, written and performed by their group of 12 – 16 year old aspiring actors, the performance is based on the three Shakespeare plays GSC staged last year, Julius Caesar, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and The two Gentlemen of Verona. The play cleverly intertwines story lines from all three plays, and includes new characters inspired by the originals. “That was the most inspiring evening” Audience member 2017

Tickets for Will’s Birthday Bash go on sale 19 March (Priority Booking opens 12 March). www.guildford-shakespeare-company.co.uk Tickets £10 - £16.