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Surrey’s Premier Lifestyle Magazine
December 2017

LOOK UP TO THE STARS

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New constellations based on modern day inspirational figures created in a bid to get more children across the UK looking up to the stars and interested in the universe



· In a campaign to get more young people interested in the universe, The Big Bang Fair has partnered with astronomers at University of Birmingham to create ‘Look Up To The Stars’: a new set of constellations representing icons from sport, entertainment, science and activism that children are inspired by today

· There are new star constellations based on JK Rowling, Usain Bolt, Malala Yousafzai, Sir David Attenborough and Mo Farah – among others

· The constellations were created after research revealed how classical creations based on the zodiac and ancient mythological figures are not inspiring today’s children to look up to the night sky

· Indeed, 72% of children have never looked up at the night sky to find a star constellation, and 29% wouldn’t be able to recognise a single classical constellation when shown them

Many of the 88 existing constellations officially recognised by the International Astronomical Union are based on the zodiac and figures from ancient Greek and Roman mythology, but a new study has found these aren’t necessarily proving successful in enticing children today to look up to the stars - with 29% admitting they wouldn’t actually be able to recognise a single classical constellation.

In a bid to get kids to take up more of an active interest in the cosmos, The Big Bang Fair has worked with University of Birmingham to create a brand-new set of constellations based on inspirational figures of the modern day that young people will want to look up to - in every sense of the term.

The new project, entitled ‘Look Up To Stars’, centres on eight new constellations for the modern day – each one representing famous men and women that are inspiring to children from the worlds of sport, entertainment, science and activism – with a view to encouraging more young people to take up an interest in the universe.

In a study commissioned by The Big Bang Fair to mark the launch of the project, 72% of the 7-19 year-olds that were polled said they have never looked up at the night sky to find a constellation, while 29% admitted they wouldn’t be able to recognise a single classical constellation by name if shown them.

So what are some of the new constellations that astronomy experts at University at Birmingham have created?

New creations from researchers include Harry Potter’s glasses to represent JK Rowling, a tennis racket for Serena Williams, a space-craft for Tim Peake, a blue whale for Sir David Attenborough and a book in honour of Malala Yousafzai.
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Sir Mo Farah meanwhile has been immortalised in the form of an ‘M’ shape constellation after his renowned ‘Mobot’ celebration, with Usain Bolt is also celebrated through a pattern of stars that resembles his own celebratory lightning-bolt stance.

The new constellations are the work of experts at the University of Birmingham’s Astronomy Society. The process of developing the new constellations involved a careful analysis of star maps for different regions of the sky by researchers.

Emma Willett, who led the University of Birmingham research team, commented: “It was an honour to work alongside The Big Bang Fair to develop a new set of constellations for the modern day to encourage children today to look up to the stars. We really hope these new creations will help people of all ages develop their interest in space and astronomy, working to inspire the next generation of astronomers to take an interest in the field.”

Beth Elgood, Director of Communications at EngineeringUK, who organise The Big Bang Fair, said: “Stargazing is a great way to spark young people's interest in the universe and inspire them to find out more. Inspiration is at the heart of The Big Bang Fair, where young visitors, their teachers and parents have the chance to get hands-on with engaging STEM activities, workshops and shows and discover where science and maths could take them in the future.”

About The Big Bang UK Young Scientists & Engineers Fair
The Big Bang UK Young Scientists & Engineers Fair is the largest celebration of science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) for young people in the UK. Taking place from 14-17 March 2018 at The NEC in Birmingham, The Big Bang Fair is an award-winning combination of exciting theatre shows, interactive workshops and exhibits and careers information from STEM professionals. Having grown from 6,500 visitors in its first year (2009) to over 70,000 in 2017, The Big Bang Fair is made possible through the collaborative efforts of over 200 organisations.

www.thebigbangfair.co.uk

School groups are invited to visit the first three days of The Big Bang Fair, which will also be open to the public on Saturday. Young people will leave enlightened about how science and engineering feature in everything they wear, eat and do. A number of apprentice, graduate and experienced engineers and scientists will be on hand to quiz, providing young people with the opportunity to discover how science and maths can lead to a great career. The Big Bang Fair also hosts the finals of the prestigious Big Bang Competition.

Christmas from HAIG CLUB

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Stylish Christmas Drinks

Haig Club Winter Spiced Espresso Martini
Dick Bradsell’s classic cocktail is given a decadent and delightful holiday twist

50ml Haig Club
50ml Crème de Cacao
50ml Espresso
1 x Cinnamon

Clubman & Cola Old Fashioned
A modern take on a classic whisky drink which enhances the caramel flavours of the cola and the vanilla flavours of Clubman

50 ml Haig Club Clubman
1 x Brown Sugar
25ml Cola
25ml Sweet Vermouth
1 twist of Cherry & Orange Peel

Clubman & Cola
The sweet, vanilla flavour of Clubman combines perfectly with the smooth caramel of cola to create a refreshing drink with a vibrant, smooth finish

50 ml Haig Club Clubman
250ml Cola
Slice of lime

Stylish Christmas Gifts from HAIG CLUB
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Up the style stakes this Christmas season with the gift of HAIG CLUB, the stunning Single Grain Scotch Whisky from the House of Haig, created in partnership with David Beckham. With its unique and striking square bottle design, HAIG CLUB brings a contemporary twist to Scotch and is a flawlessly stylish Christmas gift for both whisky lovers and newcomers to the Scotch scene.

Crafted using a unique process that combines grain whisky from three cask types, HAIG CLUB offers a fresh, clean flavour with sweet notes of butterscotch and toffee for a deliciously smooth taste. This versatile Scotch works wonderfully over ice, in long drinks, or cocktails – making for the perfect drinkable gift this festive season, whatever your loved one’s style.

HAIG CLUB CLUBMAN is the latest stylish addition to the House of Haig collection. With its vibrant and modern aesthetic, CLUBMAN inherits the same bold and progressive spirit as Haig Club, with the liquid encased in a distinctive elongated square bottle which creates a stand-out silhouette.

HAIG CLUB CLUBMAN has been matured exclusively in American Oak casks that have previously held bourbon, allowing the sweet, gentle Single Grain Scotch Whisky from Cameronbridge to interact with the vanilla, butterscotch and sweet toffee flavours found in the casks. The result is a wonderfully smooth and sweet Scotch which pairs beautifully with cola.

A charmingly chic miniature HAIG CLUB (5cl) is also available, making Haig Club the ultimate luxury stocking filler and party accessory this Christmas.

For more information visit: www.haigclub.com

The Many Faces of Christmas

Nikon releases new portrait photography series which shines a light on the people who make Christmas happen

An original, festive image series, released today by Nikon, sees German photographer Paloma Parrot travel across Europe to capture the people behind some of the most-loved Christmas traditions.

Showcasing the ability of the NIKKOR lenses, the portrait images focus onthe people who work behind the scenes to make Europe’s Christmas celebrations a reality. From one of Lapland’s reindeer handlers to a Christmas tree farmer in Denmark, as well as British stocking and card printers and a German toy maker, the exclusive photography series reveals the skill and artisan craftsmanship of the festive season.

Commenting on her series, Paloma Parrott said: ‘As a portrait photographer I’m looking for equipment that delivers phenomenally accurate subject recognition and superior performance, with the freedom and ability to convey my subject’s story from just one camera body and lens. Both of the lenses I used on this shoot offered the flexibility to capture intimate portraits, while placing these people at the heart of their working environments to visualise their roles in the making of Christmas.’

Paloma Parrot shot the images using Nikon’s new flagship DX-format DSLR, the D7500, and the following NIKKOR lenses:

AF-S DX NIKKOR 16-80mm f/2.8-4E ED VR: This high-performance, compact, all-round DX zoom lens easily covers wide-angle to telephoto zoom ranges, making it suitable for most shooting situations – from intimate portraits to travel photography. Nikon’s impressive Vibration Reduction keeps images sharp, while the lens’ lightweight body balances well on the camera

AF-S NIKKOR 50mm f/1.4G This prime 50mm wide-aperture lens has a large maximum aperture of f/1.4 which is ideal for low-light shooting or when a shallow depth of field is required. It also features Nikon’s exclusive Silent Wave Motor (SWM) for fast, quiet autofocus

Photographers who are inspired by the ‘Faces of Christmas’ series, and want to experiment and develop their portrait photography can take advantage of a cashback promotion on the NIKKOR lenses feature in the campaign.

Please see below for more information about the ‘faces’ of Christmas featured in the campaign, which includes details of their involvement in delivering the festive traditions.

About Paloma Parrott
Paloma Parrot is a German photographer based in Dortmund. She has been sharing her perspective behind the lens for over 20 years. She is known for her minimal, graphic style and obeys the mantra that ‘’less is always more’’.
www.instagram.com/palomaparrot
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Introducing the ‘Faces’ of Christmas
Cake Baker -  Mike Wallace - UK
Mike Wallace, 70
Cake maker, Meg Rivers Bakery, Shipston-on-Stour (UK)


British cake maker Mike Wallace has been the head baker at Meg Rivers Artisan Bakery for 14 years, where a key part of his role is baking a range of festive treats.

Mike typically starts preparing for Christmas in September. The Christmas cakes, puddings, wreath cake, mince pies and loaf cake are baked in small batches in the morning and finished and decorated by hand in the afternoon, ready for delivery the following day. For Mike, Christmas is about spreading joy to others and he particularly enjoys seeing his customers return every year for his award-winning iced Christmas cake recipe.
Card maker - Jade Downer - UK
Jade Downer, 25
Card maker, Tidy Print, Brighton (UK)


Brighton-based card maker Jade Downer co-founded Tidy Print, her screen printing studio and shop, with her partner Daniel Tomlinson just last year. Since opening, Jade has not only produced her own cards but offered Christmas card workshops to teach people the basics of screen printing.

During Jade’s workshops customers learn how to design their own Christmas cards. Using stencils, colour mixing and printing, they are given the opportunity to create personalised festive messages for their loved ones.
Rocking Horse maker - Julie Tuner - UK
Julie Tuner, 55
Rocking horse maker, The Rocking Horse Shop, York (UK)


Yorkshire’s Julie has been working at The Rocking Horse Shop since 1999. In those 18 years she has become a master in her craft making bespoke saddles and bridles for not only old and new rocking horses, but also for hobbyists who set out to make their own with the help of the plans supplied by the shop.

Orders for Christmas presents are taken as early as March, from families wanting a timeless, classic gift. Often old horses are brought in for restoration from people who want to recreate the delight of their beloved childhood possession and give their children the same enjoyment. Julie remarks that it’s a privilege to be able to be part of such a special gift and has also noticed a trend towards the gifting of presents that can be passed down through the generations – many people ask them to put special keepsakes and photos into the body of the horse as a time capsule.
Stocking maker - Tom Count - UK (1)
Tom Count, 18
Stocking maker, Santa Sacks, Lincolnshire (UK)


Tom Count works as a production assistant at Santa Sacks, where he spends his time printing and personalising vintage hessian sacks and stockings in time for Christmas. He ensures that every individual sack or stocking features the name of its eventual owner by printing the letters onto the products using a heat press. The finishing touches are added before they are carefully packaged up and wrapped in a bow before Tom ensures they are delivered on time for Christmas.

Tom sees his work as an opportunity to help others spread magic over the Christmas season with thoughtful, personalised gifts. He enjoys feeling part of a Christmas tradition that sees families buy a sack for their baby’s first Christmas, which they use year after year.
Christmas tree farmer - Anders Larsen - Denmark
Anders Larsen, Age 50
Christmas tree farmer, Faedres Gave, Copenhagen (Denmark)


Danish Christmas tree farmer Anders Larsen grew up on a small island 150km from Copenhagen, called Lolland. During the week Anders and his wife practise law in Copenhagen, but at the weekend they work on their Christmas tree farm and plantation. Anders and his wife purchased the Christmas tree farm two years ago and now run it as a family business.

Anders and his wife work all year to take care of the Christmas trees before they start preparing them for sale from November. They often call on their children and parents to help later in the year when the farm gets busy, and Anders sees the farm as an opportunity to bring his, and other families, together. It’s a Danish tradition for families to choose and cut down their Christmas tree as part of their festive preparation. He looks forward to seeing them cycle to the farm, spend the afternoon selecting their tree to then ride home on their bikes with their children and the Christmas tree strapped to the bike.
Reindeer handler - Upi Virkkula - Finland (1)
Upi Virkkula, 51
Reindeer handler, Salla Reindeer Park, Salla (Finland)


Upi Virkkula has worked as a reindeer handler in Salla, Finland, for almost two decades. He takes care of the reindeer all year – from planning safaris to arranging feeding trips and even visits to witness the majestic northern lights.

Upi describes Salla Reindeer Park as a unique escape for people to experience a different side of Christmas, and seizes the opportunity to introduce people to the beautiful Lappish nature. A highlight of his Christmas season is the park’s annual reindeer race – a traditional and popular sport in Lapland where visitors are encouraged to compete to secure the fastest time.
Toy Maker - Daniel Aust - Germany (1)
Daniel Aust, 43
Toy maker, Grimm’s Toys, Hochdorf (Germany)


German toy maker Daniel Aust has headed up the Grimm’s Toy workshop for the last 11 years. He combines creativity and craftmanship to produce handmade, natural and long lasting wooden toys and ensures the smooth running of the workspace, from overseeing his staff to taking responsibility for the technical and mechanical devices.

For Daniel, toy making is a way of bringing joy to a child at Christmas, as their play is such an important part of childhood. He enjoys hearing the wonderful stories from customers after they’ve bought a classic pull along or stacking toy as well as watching their child play with them for the first time.

HAVE A CRACKING DAY AT KEMPTON PARK RACECOURSE THIS CHRISTMAS

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This Christmas, Great British Racing encourages you to get out of the house and over to Kempton Park Racecourse for an unmissable Boxing Day with your family

From 16December to 2 January, there are over 60 fantastic race fixtures taking place all across the country at which under 18s go free*, meaning it’s the ideal time to get the whole family along to your local course.

Across the Christmas period, Boxing Day is one of the most thrilling race days in the calendar, with eight fixtures taking place including The 32Red Winter Festival at Kempton Park in Sunbury-on-Thames. What better way to burn off that turkey than a family day out at your local racecourse.

While down at the course, there’s plenty for kids to see and do, from visiting the pre-parade ring and winner’s enclosure, getting a jockey’s autograph, to watching a race next to a jump.

The gates will open at 10.00am on Boxing Day, with the first race scheduled for 12.45pm and the last at 3.40pm. It’s an absolute treat for top quality racing with no less than three Grade 1 races and plenty of festive fun for the whole family.

Head to www.under18sracefree.com to find your local fixture, watch Sara Cox’s Race Guide and find more fun racing activities for the kids this Boxing Day. *Check individual racecourse websites for more details

26 December Boxing Day Race Locations: Sedgefield Racecourse Wetherby Racecourse Market Rasen Racecourse Wolverhampton Racecourse Huntingdon Racecourse Wincanton Racecourse Fontwell Park Racecourse Kempton Park Racecourse
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Do celebrities have a moral obligation to come clean about plastic surgery?

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With the media being saturated with celebrities looking preened to perfection, we are often left wondering if they've had any extra help in the looks department.

Some celebrities who have come clean and confessed to using surgery or aesthetic methods to enhance their looks have come under fire for their decision not to be happy with who they are and appreciate the looks they were born with.

In this week's blog we hear from Chrissie Teigen, Ariel Winter and Sharon Osbourne who have all admitted to having cosmetic surgery, and their reasons for doing so. We also answer some questions that are commonly asked such as:

Why do people have cosmetic surgery?
Who should you tell when deciding on having cosmetic surgery?
Should you hide your surgery from your work?

Read the full article here >>> LINK

You can call us on 01892 257 357 to speak to our friendly reception staff or send us an email directly at hello@bellavou.co.uk and we'll be happy to reply.

A VERY BERRY CHRISTMAS

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SILENT POOL DISTILLERS LAUNCHES TWO NEW SEASONAL SPIRITS

Silent Pool Distillers has extended its offering for Christmas with the introduction of two new seasonal spirits: the Albury Sloe Gin and Damson Gin. Both have been neatly handcrafted in the Surrey Hills distillery, ready to bring a touch of berry warmth to your festivities and offer the perfect gin-lovers’ gift this Christmas.

Just launched, the Albury Sloe Gin (£30 per 50cl) puts a modern twist on the traditional sloe recipe, with a slightly higher strength and the addition of a secret spice. Using less sugar than most other brands, the Sloe Gin expresses a delicious balance between the sweetness and classic tart finish from the fruit. Expect an initial hit of rich berry, followed by subtle notes of juniper and almond, ending on a pleasantly warm finish.

Sip your Sloe Gin from a hip flask on a long winter’s walk, enjoy it neat or poured over ice with an optional squeeze of lemon. Or better still, why not add a splash to your Christmas champagne?

Offering an equally tempting after-dinner tipple, the Damson Gin (£30 per 50cl) brings together sumptuous notes of ripe berry and plum, with hints of almond, juniper and a finishing note of vanilla. Crafted using damsons sourced from Kent, this flavorsome British classic is not to be missed from your festive drinks selection. Mix yours with lemon juice and soda for a classy Christmas Collins!

The new spirits join a whole host of handcrafted products on offer from Silent Pool Distillers this season; from innovative liquid garnishes to boozy Christmas crackers, scented candles, gin-infused salmon and its signature, award-winning Silent Pool Gin.

The Sloe Gin, Damson Gin and all other products crafted by Silent Pool Distillers are available to buy now at the distillery, or online at www.silentpooldistillers.com.