Polesden Lacey Food Festival

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Sujet Saenkham is Australia’s hottest Thai chef

He learnt to cook on the family farm in a remote Thai village before moving to Australia, and he now has a critically acclaimed restaurant empire in Sydney. He’s coming to the UK to publish his cookbook Spice I Am and bring real Thai food to Britain’s dinner tables.
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London events with pop-up kings Chateau Marmot sold out in hours but lucky folk in Surrey will be able to see him cook and buy a signed copy of his book Spice I Am (and more importantly taste his amazing food!) at 12noon on Saturday 3rd October in the demo tent at the Polesden Lacey Food Festival, nr Dorking.
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The festival is run by Fantastic British Food Festivals, who are based in Leatherhead, and will also showcase local producers and food businesses from 2nd to 4th October. For more info visit their website here >>> LINK

Help our hedgehogs!

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Gardeners encouraged to unite to save the nation’s hedgehogs

Wild About Gardens Week: Monday 26 October to Sunday 1 November 2015

Wild About Gardens Week, the annual celebration of garden wildlife hosted by the Royal Horticultural Society and The Wildlife Trusts, is teaming up with Hedgehog Street this year to highlight how gardeners can help our hedgehogs. This much-loved creature is declining in Britain as fast as the tiger.

Hedgehogs are in trouble – they have declined by 30% in the last 10 years alone and there are now thought to be fewer than one million left in the UK. To help encourage people right across Britain to think about how hedgehog friendly their gardens, schools and community spaces are, this year’s Wild About Gardens Week will form a week-long call to action and a celebration of the humble hedgehog, packed with events, competitions and opportunities to get stuck in. This will include:
• A national call to action to create hedgehog holes in fences – a handy 13cm by 13cm template can be downloaded from the Wild About Gardens Week website.
• A competition to design the best hedgehog home. There will be three categories: individual, group and school. The prizes will range from a trail camera to a visit from a hedgehog expert. Closing date: Monday 9 November 2015.
• A host of hedgehog-themed events around the UK, from talks and workshops to community activities. At RHS Garden Harlow Carr, a new garden will be launched in participation with Hedgehog Street, showcasing hedgehog friendly planting and design. Add your event or search for those happening near you at: www.wildaboutgardensweek.org.uk/events
• A downloadable new booklet, available from the Wild About Gardens Week website, will demonstrate steps you can take to help hedgehogs in your garden.
• All information at: www.wildaboutgardensweek.org.uk

Twiggy, Patron of the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, said:
“Seeing hedgehogs in our garden when I was a child was a magical experience. Now we all need to help these special mammals – and there’s so much that gardeners can do to reverse their decline. You can cut a small hedgehog hole at the bottom of your garden fence, leave wild nesting and hibernation areas, ditch the slug pellets and check that bonfire before striking the match! All so easy to do. Please help these wonderful creatures”

Hedgehog facts and figures:
• Hedgehog numbers have fallen by 30% since 2002
• Today there are estimated to be fewer than 1 million hedgehogs left in the UK. The main drivers are thought to be: declining hedgerow quality; the over-management of parks and green space; loss of gardens to paving/decking; reduced insect prey from chemical use in gardens and on farmland; loss of grazing land; the fragmentation of land by roads, fencing and increasing density of native predators.
• Adult hedgehogs travel between 1-2 kilometres per night over home ranges between 10-30 hectares in size.
For more information about how to help hedgehogs please see notes below or our new ‘Get creative for hedgehogs this autumn’ booklet – now on the website.

Artist Friends of Turner’s House exhibition of works


Turner’s House, Twickenham - September 26/27 October 3

14 September 2015 – It is not surprising that many Friends of Turner’s House are artists. Many, inspired by the great landscape artist, have had the thrill of sketching and painting in Sandycombe Lodge, Turner’s unique country villa in Twickenham.

They are holding a selling exhibition of their work to benefit Turner’s House Trust restoration fund to restore the house to the artist’s original design.

The exhibition takes place on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 September (11-5pm) and Saturday 3 October (2-4pm). 3 October is the last day Turner’s House will be open to visitors prior to closing for restoration through 2016. Entry to the exhibition is free on all days, but for guided tours of the house on 3 October there will be the usual £4 entry fee.
The exhibition will include a wide range of mediums and styles, producing figurative to abstract works in painting, drawing, sculpture, textiles, ceramics and printing, which includes etchings and lino productions.

Turner’s House Trust has received generous support and donations from the Heritage Lottery Fund and other corporate and private donors, but needs the final slice - £177,000 - of funding to progress with its plans to conserve for the nation this unique Grade II* listed building, which is currently on the Historic England (formerly known as English Heritage) ‘Heritage at Risk Register’.

About the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF)
From the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks and buildings we love, from precious memories and collections to rare wildlife, we use National Lottery players' money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about www.hlf.org.uk

Best of British at Drake's in conjunction with Nyetimber


An exceptional dinner that will include some wines from Nyetimber's rare library stock

This will be held in November at Drake's Restaurant in Ripley, Surrey. Chef Steve Drake is passionate about using locally sourced ingredients wherever possible and his love of local produce extends to the wine list at the Michelin-starred restaurant in Ripley, Surrey, which he and Serina Drake opened in 2004. Since then their business has consistently won accolades for the innovative, creative and skilfully prepared food and superb service. Now, following a visit to the company's Sussex vineyard by Steve and sommelier Michael Fiducia, a special ‘Best of British' dinner will take place on November 12 in conjunction with Nyetimber English Wines.

"We have been serving Nyetimber at Drake's for some years now," said Steve, "but after the chance to taste the different vintages and variants while enjoying Nyetimber's lyrical, bucolic setting, which dates back to the Domesday Book in 1086, I jumped at the chance to host a dinner with these amazing English sparkling wines. We have really enjoyed creating this special menu and selecting appropriate Nyetimber wines to pair with the different courses."

Steve and Michael have put together a menu that showcases some of the very best autumn ingredients to complement the wines. The five-course menu, plus ‘snacks' on arrival, water, coffee and petit fours, accompanied by matching wines (including some from Nyetimber's rare library stock), includes dishes with pumpkin, Devon crab, monkfish and roast guinea fowl.

The full menu and further details on how to book can be found on the Drake's website - drakesrestaurant.co.uk. On the night, representatives from Nyetimber - including its winemaker - will be on hand to introduce the wines and answer questions.

National Trust Volunteers

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The National Trust is a household name

Some would argue that the oak leaf is an intrinsic part of British culture, as familiar to you and I as a pot of tea or David Attenborough’s voice.

Did you know that we are the largest voluntary conservation charity in Europe? Our moto is to protect areas of historical and ecological value for ever, for everyone. It is this need and duty to protect these fragile and irreplaceable sites which drives us forward, choosing new sites, pioneering new schemes and continuing to maintain our properties.

Membership, donations and the indomitable tea rooms all help to finance and support these efforts. However we are the largest voluntary conservation charity, the very foundation of the National Trust is built upon the loyalty and dedication of our volunteer army.

It is easy to see the National Trust as one vast charitable machine but in reality it consists of pockets of land and property, each needing its own individual regime of care and attention. Here in the Surrey Hills we are lucky to be surrounded by many such pockets, in fact just down the road is Box Hill, a beautiful and fragile mosaic of grassland and woodland. Hundreds of visitors walk, drive or cycle the world famous Zig Zag every day to take in the stunning sites and scenery that Box Hill has to offer. Box Hill has its own volunteer regiment at whose feet this beauty can be laid.

Every Wednesday and every Thursday come rain or shine, our volunteers help restore and conserve Box Hill, for both ecological reasons and for you the public to enjoy. We are always looking to expand and add to our teams, with local people, who care about nature, and who have a sense of ownership and pride at having access to Box Hill. All ages and genders are welcome, whether you are working or retired, an athlete or a dog walker, there is a space for you in our team. We need people to help keep Box Hill beautiful, the more people we have the more we can do, the bigger the projects we can embark on and the more events we can host. The more that we as a community put in, the more that we’ll get back.

The National Trust needs volunteers, the National Trust needs you!

Gina T. Box Hill Assistant Ranger

If you’d like to get involved, ask for more information, or even just have a chat please contact David Benjamins Box hill Ranger.

Email: david.benjamins@nationaltrust.org.uk
Phone: 07770887673

JCA Interiors is a finalist in design award


JCA Interiors Announced as Finalist in SBID International Design Excellence Awards 2015

London based interior design company JCA Interiors has been shortlisted for this year’s SBID International Design Excellence Awards.

Against a prestigious international field, their Surrey country mansion project has been chosen by a select panel of industry experts as one of only two British companies to reach the final in the visualisation category.

JCA Interiors’ in-house team created the high quality 3D visualisations as part of their interior design process. The visualisations were extremely detailed including specific pieces of furniture modelled to the nearest millimetre. As an interior design practice, having this 3D technology in-house enables JCA Interiors to show clients the exact design before implementation. Adjustments can be made quickly and easily until the client is completely satisfied with the design.

The whole interior design of the Surrey country mansion was balanced by the mixture of contemporary and classic blending together creating an elegant scheme which was enhanced by the use of texture, lighting and great attention to detail, comprehensively demonstrated in the 3D visualisations.

Jenny Allan, founder of JCA Interiors said “We are very proud to achieve this recognition at an international level and I believe it demonstrates our dedication to providing the best possible services to our clients.”

The public are now invited to vote for the finalists as their votes will be counted towards the overall results. See JCA Interiors’ whole project entry here >>> LINK

The SBID International Design Excellence Awards are recognised as one of the most prestigious in the interior design industry.

For more information on JCA Interiors see their website www.jcainteriors.co.uk

Surrey’s Premier Lifestyle Magazine