“Carrying on”…


“Carrying on”…


c o m f o r t , s t y l e , a n d e l e g a n c e

S u p e r b S c a n d i n a v i a n d e s i g n a n d q u a l i t y

h a n d c r a f t e d b y E L A N O o f N o r w a y

Taylor Road



Isle of Wight

(Next to Argos &

Island Dreams)


Mon - Sat - 9am to 5.30pm

Sunday - 11am to 5pm

Telephone 01983 539700 Facsimile 01983 521181


6 Jack Douglas

Find out why he is so happy at the age of 78

10 Mick O’Halloran

He spent 15 years looking after pop icon Marc Bolan

on the road, and in those hectic days the Isle of

Wight was his only salvation.We find out why.

11 Andrew Turner MP

He loves old cars, is hopeless at DIY, loathes the idea

of wasting anything – but reckons the Isle of Wight’s

County Hall is so ugly it should be demolished!

14 John Hannam

We turn the tables on interviewer John, what were

his worst encounters with the stars?

18 Shoot to thrill

Isle of Wight Gun Club, at Sainham introduces you to


19 Giving kids a swinging time

Peter Hammond tells us how golf can be a great

hobby for young and old.



ISSUE 1 November/December 2005




Welcome to the first issue of

Island Life, the Island’s new

bi-monthly lifestyle


Our aim is to report on just

a few of the great things

you can see and do, eat and

drink, experience and buy

right here on the Isle of


In each issue we will be

bringing you features,

interviews and photos of the

people and places that make

YOUR Island tick.

However this magazine

belongs to you, the reader –

so we would love to hear

what you would like to see

in these pages. Feel free to

drop us a line or an email

with your suggestions,

photos or feature ideas, and

we’ll do our best to get

them covered.

Meanwhile, we sincerely

hope you enjoy this first



The Editor

Island Life Magazine

66 Victoria Avenue


Isle of Wight

PO37 6LY

Tel: 01983 861422

Mobile: 07976 797455


Contributing Editor

Jackie McCarrick

Main Photography:

Martin Potter

Front Cover: Wolverton Manor

Contributing Photography for

Haddon Lake House -

Jessica Dobbs




Washing Machines

Washer Dryers

Tumble Dryers


Vacuum Cleaners

Buywise, 18 Riverway Ind Estate

Newport, Isle of Wight, PO30 5UX

Telephone: 01983 525252

9am - 5pm Monday to Saturday

10am - 4pm Sunday

20 Food & Drink

Heaven for coffee lovers.

Organic, the way forward...

Fultons, concept dining comes to Bembridge.

Fine dining at The Ocean.

24 Gardens

Busy Bee Christmas spectacular...

28 Equestrian

Equine law, winter rugs and Brickfields

Halloween fancy dress.

32 Nature

The Island’s own Batman & Batwoman.

33 Fashion

Four Seasons, Artigiano, Visual Impact. The

best of Autumn fashion.

40 Beauty

Liz Earle’s natural approach.

44 Art

Mike Miller paints Trafalgar 200.

45 Crafts

Thatching, is it a dying craft?

46 Property

Pittis, Fox Property, Barratt Homes.

58 Staying Over

Prestige accommodation Islandwide.

60 Motoring

Mercedes, BMW, Citroen and Skoda






ISSUE Jan/Feb 06


Is he leaving the Island,

and moving to the

United States? We have

the answer!


John reveals more

secrets form the stars.


We bring you snapshots

from Island social



Honest reviews of top

Island restaurants.


Latest news from Cowes


Interiors - Classifieds -

Eating Out - Boating -

Theatre Reviews - Local



Jack and his alter-ego

just keep “Carrying on”…

The hand of fate was at work when comedian Jack

Douglas stepped off the Isle of Wight ferry in 1996 to

appear in the stage show “Me and My Girl” at the

Shanklin Theatre. Little did he know it then, but his

leading lady in the show, Vivien, was destined to

become his wife – and the bewitching Isle of Wight, his


Stage and screen veteran Jack, whose memorable twitchafflicted

character Alf Ippititmus became a national

institution in the 1970s, fell for both Vivien and the Island,

and promptly sold his 16th century home in Godalming,

Surrey, to cross the Solent for a new life.

Now, he says, he wouldn’t live on the mainland even if it

were “rent free”.

“I’ve never been so happy anywhere,” declares Jack, who

has made Shanklin his home.

“Okay, the Island may be 20 years behind the times – but

so am I! Where else could you still leave your car unlocked,

or walk around the streets without worrying after dark?”

Jack and Vivien, a versatile singer/dancer/actress, loved

working together so much that they now come almost as a

professional “package”, choosing shows in which they can

appear together. In fact, the only reason Jack isn’t doing a

Left: Enjoying the Autum sunshine with Vivien

Above: Time out for a glass of wine.

Top: In character as Alf.


Jack featured in 8 Carry

On films:

Carry On Columbus

Carry On Emmanuelle

Carry On England

Carry On Behind

Carry On Dick

Carry On Abroad

Carry On Girls

Carry On Matron

Carry On Star

Jack Douglas




panto season this year is that the North of England venue that wanted

to book him had no part for Vivien, and so he turned it down.

“Eight weeks away on my own, up in the north and far away from home

– I didn’t fancy that,” he says, “so we’ve decided we’d have a break this


For Jack, 78, it’s something of a novelty to be “resting” from the

business. As part of a theatrical family from Newcastle (his grandfather

was in silent films and his dad was a Northern theatre impresario),

treading the boards is in his blood.

He had in fact cut his teeth as a stage-hand, panto producer and comedy

actor, long before he ever came to public notice with the enduring flatcapped,

bespectacled comedy character of Alf.

The lovable, if somewhat intellectually-challenged Alf was one of those

strokes of genius that came about completely by accident.

Jack had already been stooging for such big-name comedians as Arthur

Askey, Bruce Forsyth and Benny Hill, when he became the straight man

in a double-act with Joe Baker.

However, when Baker managed to get himself locked out of the theatre

just as Jack had gone on stage, the so-called straight-man had to turn

comedian and keep the audience entertained for the slot. He did it by

exaggerating the twitch of the band leader Eric Winston: his flash of

inspiration brought the house down, and a classic comedy character was


As well as appearing with big TV variety show names including Des

O’Connor, Jack’s character also made a big impression in the later

productions of the “Carry On” films.

So big was Alf’s impact, in fact, that even though he appeared in only

the last eight of the 31 Carry-On films, he still receives fan mail from all

over the world, as the popularity of the cult comedy films shows no sign

of fading.

What amazes Jack is the age profile of some of his fans – from children

right up to grannies.

“I can’t quite believe how popular they still are, but I suspect it’s because

the films are naughty, but not filthy,” he says. “I am always getting

letters from people who say they love the films because all the family

can sit and watch together, with no fear of having to jump up and switch

off – which sadly, I have to do very often with my TV these days”.

So enduring is the popularity of the Carry-On phenomenon that Jack

has been involved in working on the links for a new compilation

DVD, Carry On Christmas, and this autumn he appeared as the star

guest at a Festival of Carry On in Great Yarmouth.


He’s done much more than Alf Ippititimus in a long and hard-working

showbiz career, but Jack doesn’t resent the way his somewhat dopey

alter-ego has dominated his public image.

“Alf to me is a character I love,” he says fondly. “I’ve never done

anything rude with him, or used bad language. He can be a very

naughty boy but he’s never a filthy one, and I think that’s what makes

him so appealing”.

The odd thing is that if Jack were to don one of the many pairs of “Alf”

overalls hanging in his wardrobe, and put on a flat cap, people would be

queuing for autographs. But he rarely gets recognised when he’s out

and about on the Island, as plain Mr Douglas.

This suits him just fine, he says.

It means he and Vivien can enjoy their favourite walks on the south side

of the Island, or a quiet drink at their local, the Crab in Shanklin, in

relative anonymity.

“It’s the best of both worlds really,” he says.

Back at home, Jack indulges a wide range of interests outside the world

of comedy. He has a passion for jazz, and has amassed a huge collection

of records, some of them quite rare. He also paints, designs his own

clothes and is an expert cook and wine lover. In fact he has had a

number of cookery books published - with the ever-present Alf

Ippititimus being credited for some of the recipes.

He says there’s hardly anything he misses from the mainland – with

the possible exception of theatre-land. But as he says, it’s easy enough

for him and Vivien to get to London if they fancy seeing a show.

On the Island theatre front, Jack finds it sad to see Shanklin Theatre

looking so run-down and neglected.

He was involved there for a while in 1996, but says that unless it’s

restored, he won’t be appearing in any shows there.

“It’s such a shame,” he says. “It wouldn’t cost much to bring Shanklin

Theatre into line, just a bit of love and attention. I am too old nowadays

to get up on the roof and pull the weeds… but a few years ago I most

certainly would have done!”



1 5 y e a r s o n t h e

r o a d w i t h M a r c

“Touring with Marc Bolan was very stressful

When his hectic life as a pop star’s roadie was at its peak, Mick

O’Halloran needed a peaceful refuge where he could come and relax

– and he found it on the Isle of Wight.

Mick, who was senior road manager for Marc Bolan, the larger-thanlife

front man for chart-topping 70s band T-Rex, used to come to the

Island to re-charge his batteries.

“My favourite place was Godshill – to me, it represented sheer

relaxation” he says. “It presented me with the solitude and peace

that I needed from time to time”.

In the end, there was nothing else for it for Mick, and he moved

permanently to the Island in 1971 – the same year that T-Rex played

the Isle of Wight Festival alongside the legendary Jimmy Hendrix

and The Who.

Recalling his years with the troubled singer - who died in a horrific

car crash in 1977, just before his 30th birthday - Mick says: “At one

stage, Marc was the biggest thing on the planet, and we couldn’t go

anywhere without being mobbed by hundreds of fans”.

But he wasn’t the easiest of people to work for. Mick remembers

being called at two in the morning and rushing to Marc in London

only to find that the so-called urgent task he was required for was to

take the downstairs TV up into the bedroom.

“I was not happy!” says Mick, in something of an understatement.


the Isle of Wight was my saving grace”


Steve Carry

Mick O’Hallaran


Marc Bolan

Above: 1972, Mick arriving at Chicago airport during

Marc’s world tour.

“Yes, there were bad times, and times that really pushed me to the

limit – but the good times far outweighed the bad. He particularly

recalls the overwhelming reception Marc got from the crowd at the

1971 IW Festival – despite the concert as a whole being “a bit of a

shambles, with sloppy organisation”.

The year that Marc was killed also proved a critical year for Mick,

who suffered a brain haemorrhage in Bembridge.

His recovery was slow and only partial, as he still suffers restricted

mobility as a result. Now living in Wroxall, he continues to keep in

touch with the music scene, and likes to re-live the glory days by

going to see T-Rextasy, the Marc Bolan tribute band, when they are

playing in the South.

Mick has also broadened his horizons by doing college courses in

computers and desktop publishing.

It’s certainly a slower-paced life than he had in the Bolan days:

“Things are very different for me now, music has changed, and the

industry has changed… but for the better? I’m not sure. You can

certainly earn more money nowadays. My wage packet with Marc

was only £65 a week when I started. However in those days, that was

a lot of money”.

Asked for his strongest memory of the T-Rex years, Mick replied:

“The first time I met Marc, at his little flat in Bayswater Road, where

I was interviewed for the job. The place where it all began”.

“If an item remains

serviceable why renew it”




He loves old cars, is hopeless at DIY, loathes the idea of wasting

anything – but reckons the Isle of Wight’s County Hall is so ugly it

should be demolished!

Andrew Turner is a million miles away from the cardboard cut-out

version of a Tory MP, as anyone who has seen him batting about

the Island in his beloved, M-registered 1994 red Mini will quickly


We went to meet him and got a glimpse of just what makes the

Island’s Parliamentary representative tick.


What makes

Andrew tick?

Having been brought up by parents who were both teachers, and

then choosing that same career for himself, it was perhaps no

surprise that Andrew Turner’s first steps into politics should have

been prompted by an educational issue. The threat of Grammar

School closures was a subject very close to his heart, and one he

fought tooth and nail against.

As he observes: “The only way to prevent things from happening is

to do something about it, and that’s exactly what I have always


After winning a scholarship to Rugby’s famous School, Andrew went

on to Oxford, where his fellow students included Newport’s current

parish priest Father Bruce Barnes, as well as William Hague, who was

to become a future Tory leader.

At Oxford, Andrew became an active member of the Union and

joined the Conservative Party – unwittingly sowing the seeds of his

own future life in politics.

After Oxford, he followed his parents’ career path, teaching

geography and economics for seven years at comprehensive schools

in Oxfordshire – but all the while, he was becoming more and more

active within the Tory party.

So, it was no great surprise when, in 1984, he quit teaching to join

the full-time staff at Conservative Central Office. Subsequently, he

was appointed to the full-time salaried position of Special Advisor to

the Minister of Health and Social Services. He subsequently ran the

Grant Maintained Schools Foundation, and acted as an education

consultant to clients including the Girls’ Day School Trust, the

American education company Edison, and the London Borough of


It was in 1996 that Andrew first applied to become the Conservative

candidate for the Isle of Wight, when the previous long-standing

Member Barry Field was retiring through ill health.

In 1997 he stood against Peter Brand and fought an exhausting, but

ultimately unsuccessful campaign.

“County Hall is an awful

looking building”

Undeterred, Andrew spent a further four years in opposition,

showing his commitment to the Island by buying a flat in Cowes

with his partner Carole.

Victory finally came in 2001, when he won the seat with a massive

25,233 votes, and again in 2005 he retained his position with a

landslide victory of 32,717 votes.

Since then, the Island has definitely become home to Andrew and

Carole: “I wouldn’t like to live anywhere else” he declares.

His favourite “away-from-it-all” haunt for walking his two rescue

dogs, Bertie and Sausage, is right up on the Downs at Brighstone –

and when he wants to relax with company of the two-legged kind,

he enjoys winding down at The Bargemans Rest, five minutes walk

from his home in Newport.

Andrew and Carole now live at Seal House, in Newport town centre,

which they share with the resident ghost, a boy who appears from

time to time on the stairs. The house has a colourful history

altogether – and Andrew is just one of a number of MPs who have

lived there. Other previous parliamentarian residents have included

Sir Tristram Dillington, who famously lost the house in a game of


When at home, Andrew loves to watch old movies, which he has

been known to use as a diversion from all forms of DIY, painting,

fixing things, and assembling furniture.

“If I cannot operate it from the box, then I am not interested,” he

admits. Luckily, Carole is the complete opposite, and positively

relishes any kind of DIY challenge – right up to plastering walls!

Andrew prefers to get his buzz from old cars: he has an old, rubberbumpered

MG that he would love to restore one day.

Currently it’s on the mainland but he dreams of

bringing it to the Island and starting work on it.

“I would love to see the old MG restored back to its

glory days,” he says wistfully. In the meantime, he

contents himself with driving a 11 year- old red Mini,

which perfectly illustrates his view that “If it’s

serviceable then why replace it?”

This is certainly a view he holds when it comes to

historic buildings – and he still seethes over the recent

demolition of the old Clarendon Hotel in Shanklin.

“The building had such history,” he says.

“The beams that were used in the now-demolished

building came from the wreck of the Clarendon, which

sank on the 11th October 1837. So great was this

disaster that the building of a lighthouse began in

1837, at St Catherine’s Point, it was completed and first


used on March 25th 1840. Unfortunately 25 people lost their lives.

“And now all this has gone forever!”

There’s one building the MP wouldn’t mind doing away with,

however- and that’s the Island’s County Hall.

“It needs to be pulled down” he says uncompromisingly. “It’s an

ugly building, with hundreds of masts and aerials - goodness knows

what they do, it just looks awful”.

He also despairs over some of the modern housing developments

that are springing up and says: “I wish that developers would put

some character back into the houses they build on the Island. They

seem to forget we are an Island and that we have a rich history and

a reputation to live up to.

“These Wendy houses that are being built everywhere are ruining

the Island. If only a little more care and thought was put into the

initial planning stages, we could build new houses that continue to

fulfil what visitors to the Island expect”.

On the subject of visitors, Andrew reckons that the Island doesn’t

necessarily need to attract any more than it has – but it does need

them to be able to spend more money whilst they are here.

“We also need a new, younger, generation of visitors to the Island,”

he says, “to take advantage of all the sporting facilities we have


“We need to regenerate our towns and coastlines, bringing in better

quality facilities and making use of all the assets the Island has to


The Island has certainly won this Midlands-born boy over, so much

so, that even if he lost his Parliamentary seat, he’s adamant he’d

still remain here.

He loves the pace of life, the natural

beauty of the landscape, and the social

scene – with the County Show being

his favourite calendar event.

“I fight hard for the Isle of Wight in

Westminster and Whitehall” he says,

“and I see it as my job to enable

Ministers and fellow Parliamentarians

to understand what it is like to live

and provide services on an island”.



Helen Worth

Looking back on well over thirty years of interviewing famous

people, from Hollywood legends, to an ex-Prime Minister, British

sporting heroes like Bobby Moore and Roger Bannister, singing idols

who have conquered the world and TV legends, including Frankie

Howerd and Benny Hill, I still wonder just how I have done it.

Back in the 60s I was so embarrassed at meeting new people, was

too shy to eat in restaurants and my confidence levels had hit the

deck. Sometimes I sat in a darkened room, on my own, just to get

away from everything.

My first interview was certainly not a hint of what was to come. It

was in 1972 at the Winter Gardens, Ventnor, and the Bachelors, then

one of the most famous singing acts in Britain, sensed just how

naïve an interviewer I was and gave me a rough ride. I cringe at the

thought of it. I still have the tape but would only play it publicly for

a sizeable sum for my current charities. Years later I met up again

with the Irish singing group and was more than ready for them. I

even managed to twist their arm for a free voice-over.

Patience is essential for any interviewer. I once waited five hours for

a five minute interview with Joe Loss and, more recently, took a ten

hour round trip to Cardiff to interview the delightful Nigel Havers.

When I got to the New Theatre, for our in-between shows interview,

I heard the stage door keeper announce that Mr. Haver's taxi was

waiting. He had forgotten our interview and was nipping back to his

hotel. He did take pity on me and I got around ten minutes - and he

got a larger taxi fare than expected.

I was due to meet Jeremy Irons at London's Langham Hotel. I arrived

an hour early, had set up all my equipment in a room donated by the

hotel. I sat in an extremely comfortable chair with my eyes peeled

on the door. Jeremy was coming into the city on his motorbike and





“Patience is essential for any

inter viewer. I once waited five hours

for a five minute inter view with Joe


would see me, as well as going to his dentist. I sat for over three

hours and never saw him enter the hotel. My mobile was flat, so I

was marooned. I went out for a quick breather and, apparently, at

that precise time, Jeremy's office had rung the hotel and I was being

paged. In the end, unaware of this, I went back to Waterloo and got

the train back to Portsmouth. When I arrived home I found that

Jeremy had been delayed and would be able to do it later in the day.

There were at least four messages on my 'phone. In the end I went

back a couple of weeks later and met Jeremy backstage at the

Theatre Royal, Drury Lane. I saw him captivate a theatre full of

students at a workshop and was so proud he's an Islander.

When I went to the home of the late Sir Edward Heath in Salisbury

his housekeeper suggested it would be fine to set up my equipment

in the entrance hall. A few minutes later she returned to say Sir

Edward would now like to record it in the library. I set up again and

then had another visit from his housekeeper. Sir Edward had finally

decided to take me into the garden for our thirty minute chat. I had

no extension lead and his garden seemed longer than a football

pitch. They readily supplied a lead. There was no time to worry just

how this shy East Cowes boy was actually sat in the wonderful

garden of a former Prime Minister. I was dying for a cup of tea or

coffee but the offer never came.

I hate being late for interviews. I was due to meet Angela Rippon at

a Holland Park hotel. I was in good time and halfway on the tube

run from Waterloo. Then all passengers were asked to leave the train

and station due to a signal failure. There I was in the middle of

London and not a taxi in sight. I rang the hotel to pass on my

apologies to Angela. In the end I was nearly 30 minutes later. Would

she have waited? Angela, who had not got my message, was

completely relaxed. She added: "Everyone's late in London; it's just

Bruce Forsyth

one of those things."

I've been so lucky and have enjoyed visits to the homes of many

famous people and in the cases of Bruce Forsyth, Amanda Redman,

Dame Vera Lynn, the late Sir John Mills and Virginia McKenna they

were quite wonderful and so very hospitable. Michael Winner was a

little different. He kept me waiting for nearly an hour, was very

gruff when we met and complained because I had a double mike

stand for a more relaxed interview. "Why can't you have one mike

like everyone else - and hurry up, I haven't got all day," bellowed

Michael. In the end I set up both mikes and hoped for the best.

When the recording began he was a perfect guest

until he threatened to throw me out unless I

brought the interview to a close, as he had

someone waiting to see him. I just about made it. I

think Michael just plays along with his grumpy

image. I've recently read his book and had a hard

job to put it down.

Lonnie Donegan, one of my lifelong music heroes,

gave me a real rough ride. If I had not gone to

London to pre-record the interview to promote his

forthcoming Island gig, I would have walked out.

We had a nice pot of tea and he was so charming.

That all changed when the interview started. He

disagreed with everything I brought up and

disputed facts that I knew were right. He took hold

of my interview card with a few bullet points and

notes and threw it across the room. I had to stop

and start the interview several times and he was

ruder than anyone I had ever encountered before.

As I left his flat he asked if I could sort out some


hotel accommodation for his Island visit. I never hold grudges and

so I agreed to sort him out a nice hotel, off the beaten track. In

hindsight, I should have booked him in to a real dump, to get my

own back. Actually, I arranged for him to stay at the highly

acclaimed Swainston Manor Hotel. I was so embarrassed to find out

he did not turn up and went to a Shanklin hotel instead. Sadly, he

has since passed away.

I have a never-give-up policy and it took fully 18 years to finally get

an interview with American singing legend Gene Pitney. When he

Liz Dawn



came to Sandown Pavilion in 1978 I was writing for the now defunct

IW Weekly Post and Gene was not doing any interviews during his

stay. Eighteen years later, through a mutual friend, I suddenly found

myself in Gene's dressing room at the Guildhall, Portsmouth. The

interview was well worth the wait.

I was lucky enough to visit the Manchester studios of Coronation

Street for a special John Hannam Meets radio show. The night

before I went, the Granada press office rang to tell me just who I

was due to interview. It was four of the younger cast members who

had not been in the show very long. I was happy but a little

disappointed that none of the major names would be available. I

had a very good contact in the studio who sensed my

disappointment when he rang, a little later, to see who I would be

interviewing. He assured me, all would be fine on the day.

I left the Island on the 3-30am Cowes to Southampton ferry, walked

to the station, caught the first train to Reading and then a train to

Manchester. It was due in at 10-20am and arrived on the dot. I took

a taxi to the studio and 20 minutes later was walking through the

famous street. As there were no children filming that day they set

me up in their play room and I just waited for the actors to be

brought in. Everything went to plan and the press girls left after my

first four interviews, which they had set up. My contact then told

me: "Sit tight. You never know what might happen."

Within the next hour in came Liz Dawn (Vera), Bill Tarmey (Jack),

Helen Worth (Gail) and Jimmy Harkishin (Dev). That was not the

end of it. I was invited to Leeds, a few months later, to attend the

Liz Dawn Charity Concert for her breast cancer charity and

interviewed another seven from Coronation Street, including Sue

Nicholls (Audrey), Malcolm Hebden (Noris) Vicky Entwhistle (Janice)

and Jenny McAlpine (Fiz.)

My recent visits to London have not been without incidents. I went

to the West End to interview Bernie Nolan, who plays Sheelagh

Murphy in The Bill, on the day after the London bombings. I was sat

in the first carriage of an underground train, with just three others.

One was a guy who kept looking round and grinning at us in a

menacing fashion. Did he know something we didn't? I was glad to

get off at Oxford Circus.

The next trip was on the very day of the failed bombs and the city

was again in turmoil with so many hold-ups and bomb scares. Mike

Batt made the visit well worthwhile.

On another visit, around the same time, I decided to go for three

interviews on the same day, in different parts of London. I began in

Fulham with Liz Fraser and then headed for Harrow to meet Matt

Monro Junior. Whilst walking back to the underground I got caught

in a thunder storm. Then it was announced the floods had delayed

trains and closed two stations and journeys to central London were

severely delayed. I was wet and now worried I would not make

my 5-30pm date with Katie Melua. The fact that the interview

was for a charity programme did little to ease my nerves. I arrived

hot, wet and tired, with just three minutes to spare. Katie told

me to relax for a few minutes and then gave me a super


Some of the major highlights of over thirty years of interviewing

famous people just has to be meeting a few Hollywood legends

and interviewing them in-person and on a one-to-one basis. These

include Charlton Heston, the late Sir John Mills, I was invited to

his Denham Village home and he was a perfect host, and Michael

York. Terry Waite was so charismatic and, by Royal Appointment,

Prince Edward was great fun. I also admit to seeing more of a

former Miss World, in a dressing room mirror, than millions of

viewers saw on television. That was by pure accident - of course.


The death of a mutual friend, Wally Malston, who was Bruce

Forsyth's scriptwriter, led me to the home of the legendary star. I

met Bruce at Wally's Aldershot funeral and, and we decided to do a

programme in memory of him. He had grown up on the Isle of

Wight. I know in my heart that Wally would have been delighted.

His ambition, for me, was to get an interview with Bruce Forsyth.

Basically, I'm still a shy person and I still can't believe who I've been

lucky enough to meet. Is it all a dream or has it really happened? I

have never had a desire to be on the stage but I do believe I act the

role of an interviewer.

There is one question everybody still asks me. Who would I most

Lonnie Donegan

like to interview? Sean Connery is my instant reply. I saw him in

Newport, many years ago, and like everyone else at the time, had

never heard of him.

Katie Melua

Prince Edward


Sir John Mills



The Isle of Wight Gun Club, based at the picturesque

shooting ground at Sainham Farm in Godshill, is

always looking for new members.

Established for over 100 years, the club has built up a

large membership ranging in age from nine year-old

beginners right up to shooting veteran Don, their

oldest member at 87 years old.

Children from the age of nine can join the club and

learn the skill of shooting. Contrary to popular belief,

this is not an expensive hobby, which is why people

from all walks of life can be found taking part. Initially

there is no need to purchase a gun, as one will be

provided by the club, along with cartridges. The same

goes for clothing - just turn up sensibly dressed and

start shooting.

Safety is paramount at the club, which is why there

has never been an accident involving a gun in its 100

year-plus history. Chairman Keith Trigg explains: "All

new members are closely supervised at all times, and

are never left unattended with a loaded

gun. However, the club also ensures it

carries adequate insurance for all


Members start shooting right from their

first lesson, so it's exciting for them and

it keeps them interested in the sport.

Later on, they can apply for their own

licence and purchase their own gun. Guns

cost from £350 upwards.

The cost per lesson is £25 for 50 birds

(clays), this also includes cartridges and

the use of a club gun. Alternatively you

can become a member with a fee of £35

per year. Keith says: "The new members

we currently teach love shooting; they

find it exciting, and all the kids we have

taught have come with a responsible

attitude, and the realisation of how

important it is to be sensible when they

are handling a gun".

For a trial lesson, call Keith Trigg on

07885 493341 or visit



Shoot to thrill!

Above: Fred Salter

Left: Lou Critchley (12)

Bottom: Keith Trigg


Chris Reed


kids a



Are you harbouring a budding young

Tiger Woods at your house?

You may never know unless your

youngster has the chance to practice his

or her swing on the golf course.

Though it's not the most obvious choice,

golf can in fact be a great hobby for

children of all ages, because it's

challenging and fun as well as extremely

skillful. Peter Hammond from Shanklin

Sandown Golf Course reckons that more

children should try the sport: "Children

from all backgrounds can take part - it's

not an expensive hobby for parents, and in

fact, we find the mums and dads often

become involved and decide to take

lessons themselves".

Children can start golf as early as the age

of five. Currently Peter coaches approx 25

children with a group lesson once a week

on either a Saturday or Sunday morning.

All the required equipment is included

within the price of the lesson, right up

until the point where children are old

enough to purchase their own equipment.

However, for those youngsters who show a

natural talent for the game early on, it

can be a good idea for the parents to

invest in a set of golf clubs and shoes for

their child.

Peter also spends time visiting local

schools introducing children to the game

of golf. "At first, many kids are not that

keen on the idea, but once they have the

chance to pick up a golf club and have a

go, it then becomes a challenge for them,

and most children who decide to give it a

go end up loving the game. I think it's

just a case of introducing them to it in

the first place".

"Even in the early stages, there are

competitions that kids can enter at all

levels. We also have match days that the

kids can come along and watch. It is also

a good way to ensure that your child

learns the skills of mixing with other

youngsters, and golf can become a way of

teaching your child to become part of a

team. Of course it also keeps them pretty


COST GUIDE: Group lessons £2 an hour;

private lessons £28 an hour; set of clubs

around £75; golf bag approx £40; shoes

£25; golfing glove £10. For more

information, call Peter Hammond on 01983


Greg Hammond




Concept dining comes

to Bembridge

A brand new restaurant idea has been launched in Bembridge by

Ian Whitehead, the previous owner of popular eating out venue

Joe Daflo's in Ryde.

Ian describes his latest brainchild, Fultons Sea Food and Chop House,

as a whole new concept, with its open kitchens and wet fish counter

for diners to make their selection from.

"I think that it's taken the restaurant business to new levels on the

Island" commented Ian.

The interior design of Fultons is stunning, with its bold artwork

commissioned from local artist Charlotte Hodge-Thomas, to the


unusual fresh fish counter which is packed with fresh local produce

delivered every day. Fultons have played it very clever in producing a

core menu with some great classic dishes, including Bembridge crab

cakes, Caesar salad, Grilled 10oz Angus Aberdeen sirloin steak, grilled

corn fed chicken, Fultons seafood platter, and mouth-watering

desserts such as white chocolate and banana cheesecake to mention

just a few. However you will find the biggest selection on the daily

specials board, which will feature seasonal produce and recipes that

reflect the changing seasons.

The head chef Tim Nicholls is already known for keeping customers

happy on the Island: he previously worked at The Baywatch and

Biskra Beach to name just two. Tim's as far removed as you can get

from the stereotyped angry man of the kitchen - he's a happy chef, a

very pleasant guy!

He says the Fultons menu was designed with flexibility in mind:

"There were two main considerations in designing the menu: first it

was important to keep it simple, using only the freshest local

ingredients, and second I needed to create a menu that I could

handle on my own. I will always be looking at ways of improving,

and customer feedback will determine the menu to a great extent".

Front of house we have Matt Reed and Clare Brown, Matt has been

with Ian previously at Joe Daflo's. Matt commented "we simply want

customers to come and enjoy our unique dining experience, as long

as we maintain our high standards and ensure that the food is fresh,

we cannot do more than this"

Fultons is open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner.

Tel: 01983 875559

Organic, is the way forward

Godshill Organics have just completed

building a new up-market trendy organic

shop. The new shop is fitted out

beautifully and the range of products

available are so extensive it will take you

some time to browse through the isles.

The owner Ruth Illman explained to me

that a lot of the produce on sale is grown

on their own farm, so it is guaranteed to

be fresh and most definitely organic.

There’s are a whole range of organic food

available from fruit and vegetables,

cereals, pasta, pickles, spreads, bread,

cakes, wines, tea’s, coffees etc, they even

have a range of organic baby foods. The

business has been established in its

current form since 1994 and expansion is

always on the cards.

Newport Road, Godshill.

Tel: 01983 840723

Fine Dining at The Ocean

When Frenchman Frederic Sol arrived on the

Island his brief was to create a fine-dining

restaurant that would exceed all expectations,

both in the food and wine departments.

Frederic, whose experience includes managing

a host of Michelin starred restaurants on the

mainland, refuses to settle for anything less

than perfection. Hence, the service, food

presentation, and a varied wine list all add up

to an immaculate combination.

Surpisingly, you will find that the menu is

reasonably priced at around £25 per head, with

typical courses varying from Fillet of Beef with

Foie Gras, Mushroom Duxelle, Pomme Fondante

and Red Wine Jus, to John Dory with Beurre

Blanc, Baby vegetables, and for desserts Hot

Chocolate Fondant, Chocolate Ice Cream,

Nougat Glacee, plus a very large selection of Ice

Creams and Sorbets, and to finish, granary and


Heaven for

Coffee lovers

the Leafy Bean, Shanklin offers over 60

different variety's of coffee

If you consider yourself something of a

coffee connoisseur, then perhaps you

should pay a visit to the Leafy Bean in

Shanklin. Here, you're bound to be spoilt

for choice with over 60 different types of

coffee on the menu. Owner Len Hookings

and his wife Audrey have built up a

thriving little business, with Audrey

spending most days baking the delicious

fresh cakes and scones that are served

daily. The Leafy Bean is a small and

friendly establishment, which means you

may wait a little while during rush periods

- but most customers are happy to go with

the flow and soak up the lovely mix of

aromas wafting about the place. You can

also buy any of the freshly ground coffees

by the gram, to try out at home. Typically

100g will cost just over £2.

walnut bread served with an unusual selection of


Everything is prepared fresh on the premises by

the team of English and French chefs, and The

Ocean’s modern cuisine is enhanced perfectly by

its clean and contemporary surroundings.

Parties of up to 40 can be catered for, as well as

private dining functions for up to 20.

At lunchtime, The Ocean offers an appealing

brasserie-style menu, with dishes such as chicken

Caesar salad, Ventnor crab fishcake, and Sirloin


Opening hours are Monday-Sunday 12 mid-day to

2pm for lunch, and 7pm to 9.30pm for dinner.

The Ocean is located at Hambrough Road, Ventnor.

IW 856333



Dimbola Lodge

Nowadays, the West Wight is best known as a holiday

destination, family friendly, a place of quiet beaches and

countryside walks, a backwater where people come to relax,

and switch off their minds, rather than to be at the cutting

edge of contemporary culture. A place seemingly still in

thrall to its glorious past.

For here during the two decades between Tennyson moving

into Farringford in 1853 and Julia Margaret Cameron leaving

the more modest dwelling of Dimbola for Ceylon in 1875,

the scattered cottages and seaside villas drew together many

of the leading figures in the arts, philosophy and science.


“I turned my coal-house into my dark room and a glazed fowl house I had given

to my children became my glass house... the society of hens and chickens was

soon changed for that of poets, prophets, painters and lovely maidens, who all in

turn have immortalised this humble little farm erection."

Julia Margaret Cameron

Annals From My Glass House

Darwin, Gladstone, GF Watts, Thackeray, Longfellow,

Christina Rossetti, Alice Liddell, Lewis Carroll, Benjamin

Jowett: all walked these quiet green lanes, and down to the

sea. Hester Fuller later wrote that "Freshwater in the time of

Tennyson has been compared to Athens in the time of

Pericles, as being the place to which all the famous men of

the reign of Queen Victoria gravitated".

And it was the pioneer photographer Julia Margaret Cameron

who organised them, fed them, flattered them, and captured

their very essence through the messy and painstaking

method of wet collodion. From the chaotic household at

Dimbola – named after tea estates her family owned

in Ceylon – emerged the fragile and sometimes out

of focus images through which their likenesses gleam

at us still, transformed into something mythic and


And yet in 1990 this wonderful house was saved

from demolition, literally in the teeth of the

bulldozers, and transformed into a photographic

gallery, museum and arts centre, with a fine tearoom

attached. Self financing, and now attracting visitors

from all over the world, Dimbola continues in the

eccentric and friendly style which Julia Cameron

established over a century ago.

Everyone is welcome at Dimbola Lodge, Dimbola

Lodge is open 10am to 5pm Tuesday to Sunday

inclusive and is also open every Bank Holiday

Monday’s and every day during the school holidays.

Admission is £4.00 for adults, children under 16 are

free. Discounts for groups of 10 or more are


For further details please call 01983 754960





like you

have never


Busy Bee garden centre, have extended their

premises in order to house the largest display of

Christmas decorations the Island has ever seen

under one roof. It’s spectactular...


Busy Bee Garden Centre

Opposite Tesco Roundabout, Ryde.

Chris Leslie owner of Busy Bee Garden Centre hit on the idea of

selling Christmas decorations around 13 years ago, as a way of

boosting trade over the winter months, which tended to be

quieter for the garden centre side.

Initially, Chris turned a small corner of his premises into a

Christmas Wonderland, and so successful was this feature that

the display has increased in volume each year.

Now its fame has spread not just across the Island, but onto the

mainland too - in fact, it’s arguably the largest display on the

south-coast, attracting visitors to the Island just to witness this

Christmas extravaganza.

According to Chris, it takes love to create the displays, along

with a certain imaginitive flair and talent. As he says, a hardnosed

businessman could not achieve what the people at Busy

Bee have done.

“We start putting the display together in October and it is

normally finished in the first week of November. It’s good

because I can keep all my staff on throughout the year, and each

year we help a charity connected with children. This year it’s a

children’s hospice, Naomi House in Winchester. At any time

they might have up to 15 Island children with them. It needs to

be a charity connected with kids, as that is what Christmas is all

about. This year we have more stock than ever - we can decorate

the dinner table, inside, outside … we have really gone wild this


”We have tried to cover everyone’s tastes by sourcing the stock

from around Europe, mainly Germany as the quality of German

goods is far superior to that of goods from the Far East. Children

love coming here because it’s like a dream for them. We have

invested in a real life Father Christmas this year who tells

Christmas stories – it’s a real crowd puller. This year we have

themed the displays, on famous pantomimes like Cinderella”.

”You must come and see the displays, we are open Monday to

Saturday 8.00 to 5.30pm and Sundays 11am to 5pm”.

Tel: 01983 811096





up those

dark days

of winter in

your garden

Gardens are at their

beautiful best in spring

and summer, blooming

with texture and vibrant


It’s much harder to keep up appearances in the wetter, darker autumn

and winter months. It’s harder, but far from impossible.

Creating colour and interest all-year-round in gardens both small and

large is an achievable project with some careful planning.

The two most difficult times to produce colour are at the end of

August and the period between late December and late January. The

key at these times of year is to plant your flowering shrubs nearer to

your house, which will help to give the impression that the whole of

your garden is still flowering.

There are many plants that are recommended for winter colour. Here

is a selection.

Prunus Autumnalis Rosea is a small winter flowering cherry tree with

small highly scented flowers. An ideal tree for the small garden.

Helleborus Niger, known as the Christmas rose, seems unremarkable,

even boring during the summer months. However, as Christmas arrives

the display of waxy flowers is nothing short of spectacular. When

planting, incorporate some peat into the soil. It grows best in semishade,

in a sheltered spot near to your house.

Many conifers and other evergreens display fine winter tints, while

the bare tracery of deciduous trees and shrubs adds a delicate beauty

not appreciated in other seasons. Consequently, some of the most

valuable garden plants for winter are those with coloured stems and


Perhaps the best-known plants for winter stems are Cornus

(dogwoods), which display a range of colours from bright yellow to

dark red.

Dogwoods grow well in moist, even wet soil and in open, sunny

positions. They flourish around ponds. Many have good autumnal leaf

tints. They combine well with hellebores and ferns, and classic

companions are spring bulbs such as snowdrops, aconites and


For brilliant red stems the Royal Horticultural Society champions

Cornus alba Sibirica which may exceed 6.5ft tall. A vigorous plant

especially in wet ground, it suckers strongly from the root.

For purplish stems, Cornus alba Kesselringii contrasts with brighter

selections, but the sombre colour should be used sparingly.


Look for gold leaves on Cornus alba Aurea, white-variegated foliage

on Cornus alba Elegantissima and green leaves margined gold on

Cornus alba Spaethii. Also notable is Cornus alba Siberian Pearls,

which produces white fruits.

Cornus sanguinea Midwinter Fire can be a remarkable sight.

Older stems in the centre of the plant are yellowish, becoming orange

and finally coral red at the extremities, together giving the

impression of a glowing flame. In autumn its leaves are buttery


For drama, a ghostly, icy-white thicket of Rubus cockburnianus is hard

to beat, but this plant with its 10ft stems like barbed wire is one you

will have to be careful weeding around.

The plant is highly vigorous and often needs restraining so is

unsuitable for smaller gardens. Yet it is not fussy about soil and

grows in sun or dappled shade. Underplant it with snowdrops and


Bamboos are popular, especially those with colourful stems, and as

they are evergreen their appeal is not limited to winter.

Phyllostachys nigra (black bamboo) is seen in many fashionable plots.

Almost as popular is Paurea with bright green canes.

Colourful pots and containers planted with winter plants and bulbs

are popular for brightening dark winter days and look good scattered

throughout the garden to provide splashes of localised interest. Often

they consist of little more than a few winter pansies or heathers, but

with imagination exciting combinations are possible.

A u t u m n a l

g a rd e n i n g

Now you have enjoyed the seasons of buds, blossom and fruits and

vegetables, it is time for your garden to wind down for its winter

slumber. But that doesn’t mean to say it’s finished being a spectacle

just yet, so long as you have the right plants. Autumn will see

berries at their best and foliage dying off in a blaze of rich oranges,

yellows and reds.

And you’re not quite done with your chores either. Autumn is also

the season for you to start planning ahead for the three seasons of

next year. Put the work in now and you will make the most of next

spring, summer and autumn. The second planting season of the year

allows plants and trees to put roots down ready to make full use of

spring’s growing season. Exceptions to this rule are magnolias and

bare root roses, which are both better planted in early spring.

Now is also the time to plant bulbs, make compost, divide

perennials and prepare growing beds for next spring. The abundance

of vegetable matter from trees and plants provides a supply for the

compost pile and next year’s vegetable garden. Dig a trench in your

vegetable garden, fill it with leaves, add some fertiliser and cover

with topsoil. Carry out this task annually and it will produce quality

soil which is organic in every sense of the word.

Unless you carefully planned your

garden last year to produce a

stunning autumnal display, there

isn’t much that you can do as a

quick fix. However, you can

consider incorporating interesting

plants and trees in your garden

design for next year. Here are

some shrubs and trees that make

the most of autumn’s display.

Japanese maple (Acer palmatum)

This hardy, deciduous tree has

attractive and delicate leaves in

either vibrant green or red

throughout the summer, but it is

the autumn foliage that sets acers

apart. Depending on the type you

can expect to see vivid reds,

yellow or orange. Height and

spread: 6m x 6m. Special

requirements: Japanese maples

prefer shelter from the wind and

slightly acidic soils.

Hedgehog rose (Rosa rugosa)

This unusual, hardy rose has

crinkled, glossy green leaves with


large pink/purple open flowers in the spring that go on to produce

lovely tomato-like inedible fruits in the autumn. Height and spread:

2m x 2m max.

Crab apple (Malus ‘John Downie’): Also hardy and deciduous, crab

apples provide multi-seasonal interest, with pretty blossom in the

spring and large red crab apples, suitable for making jam, in the

autumn. These look like Christmas baubles once the branches are

bear in the winter months. Height and spread: 10m x 7m. Special

requirements: Prefers full sun.

Spindle tree (Euonymus europaeus ‘red cascade’)

This bushy, deciduous shrub has oval green leaves that transform

into red in the autumn. The autumn also sees purple/pink fruits

split to reveal orange seeds. Height and spread: 3m x 3m max.


While some cotoneasters are evergreen, the deciduous varieties

provide a show of autumnal reds. With pretty white flowers tinged

with pink in the spring and clusters of vibrant red or orange berries

in the autumn, cotoneasters provide a good deal of seasonal

interest. Height and spread: 30cm to 10m x 2m to 10m.


EQUESTRIAN - Sponsored by Brickfields and Froghill

Comfort and style

for your horse

When mum and daughter Soo Richardson

and Mandy Steen wanted to set up a tack

shop on the Island 25 years ago, they

were almost laughed out of the bank.

“The bank thought it was too much of a

risk to lend £500 to two silly women

who wanted to set up a business in a

caravan,” recalls Mandy.

But the women ended up having the last

laugh - because their now-thriving

business, Froghill Tack at Sandford,

carries a stock of at least £150,000, and is

a favourite haunt for riders from miles


Soo and Mandy, who started out because

there was only one other tack shop on

the whole Island (which was too far away

for their own convenience) refused to be

put off by the bank’s downbeat attitude

and plunged in regardless, selling tack on

a small scale. To their satisfaction, they

soon outgrew the caravan they set up in,

and their business now fills an old

agricultural building on the farm where

they live.

Mandy and Soo both have homes on the

site, as does Mandy’s sister Genevieve

Sanders, who undertakes a repair and

cleaning service for horse rugs.

In fact, this family concern has proved

its enterprise by constantly looking for

opportunities to diversify the business –

and then going for it.

Five years ago, for instance, after the

clothing chain C&A closed down, Froghill

Tack saw a niche in the skiwear market,

particularly at the budget end, and began

stocking clothing to take customers

stylishly onto the slopes.

“We used to get people coming in asking

if our riding jackets would be suitable for

skiing as well” says Mandy, “and we

realised this might be another opening

for us”.

The ski section now attracts a lot of firsttime

skiers who don’t want to blow a

fortune on a sport they are only just

trying out, but want to look fun and

funky for their first foray into the snow.

With the new season’s ranges of

salopettes, jackets and accessories just


arriving at Froghill, this is the time of

year when trading becomes brisk.

It also coincides with the time of year

that riders start to dig out their old horse

rugs and realise that barbed wire, horses’

teeth and English weather have taken

their toll.

Sometimes, the damage can be put right

by repair expert Genevieve, but Froghill

also has a fantastic stock of new rugs to

choose from.

Mandy’s tips when choosing a new one



Like anything, if you buy quality, it will

last longer than a cheaper brand. Rugs

have to take heavy punishment from

barbed wire fences, rolling, and most

common of all chewing from the horse -

so it’s sensible to go for the best quality

you can afford. Seamless rugs are a good

bet because there is less to get caught,

such as seams, etc.

Also look out for thermobonded fibre,

which regains its original structure and

thickness if the horse rolls. Last but not

least are the straps: make sure they are

stitched or bonded, as many rugs fail

because of the stitching on the straps

and round the buckles.


Design is not just about looking pretty,

it’s about fitting correctly and keeping

the elements at bay. There are plenty of

designs on the market, but some basic

rules apply. First, look at the neck area,

and make sure the rug does not cut into

the bottom of the horse’s neck and

chest, as this can become very

uncomfortable and make grazing

difficult. Another important area is

around the stomach and legs. Look for

rugs that wrap snugly round the horse’s

shape, giving it extra protection without

getting caught and gathering behind the

elbow. This in turn gives the horse more

freedom of movement.

Types of rug

TURNOUT RUG - Used for the winter

months, this can be a single waterproof

rug, or a Duo System, which is a 300gsm

under blanket and a 100gsm Outer Rug,

ideal for our changeable climate.

STABLE RUG - Used when the horse is

left in the stable during the day or


SWEAT RUG - Used for when the horse

returns from a hack out, keeps the horse


Taking care of your rug

It’s important to take care of your rug to

make it last longer. Always make sure

Sponsored by Brickfields and Froghill - EQUESTRIAN

that you either brush the mud off the

rug or hose the whole thing down. Most

rugs can be either hand washed, or put

on a delicate machine cycle (30C). Also

ensure that you use a really mild soap as

using a strong one can cause skin

irritation to the horse. Also some strong

detergents can remove the

waterproofing, which is the last thing

you want. Once washed, rinse

thoroughly in clean water and leave to

drip dry – never tumble dry. Ensure that

it’s stored in a dry, well-ventilated area

to prevent mould growth, and keep well

away from mice, as they love rugs and

chew them to make their nests.


Rugs will vary in price according to

If you ’re not sure, ask

Rugs are not cheap, so you want to think

carefully before you spend your hard earned

cash. If you are not sure then Mandy Steen will

be more than happy to help you.

Call Mandy on 01983 840205.

quality. They all do the same job but if

you invest that bit more then you can be

sure of a rug that lasts longer. Rambo is

probably regarded as the top rug, with

prices ranging from £204 for a Duo

turnout rug, down to £54.95 for an

Amigo turnout rug. A less expensive

range is the Weatherbeeta. Both these

makes of rugs do the job well, although

the Rambo rugs, in our opinion, have the



EQUESTRIAN - Sponsored by Brickfields and Froghill

Above: Annabel & Theo Payton - 2nd Place

Main Picture: Becky

Young - 6th place

No trick – it

Was a real


It was a real treat to see so many

youngsters making a fantastic effort

with their costumes for the Hallowe’en

fancy dress event at Brickfields this

year. Brickfields holds the event every

year – but don’t worry if you missed

out because coming up soon is the

Christmas fancy dress, which is

scheduled for Thursday 29th

December. Any under-15s can take

part for an entry fee of £4.00. If you

would like to get into the festive

dressing up spirit, then please call

Brickfields on 01983 566801.

The top three pairs in the Hallowe’en

fancy dress contest were:

1st - Alex & Josie Toogood

2nd - Annabel & Theo Payton

3rd - Henry Moore &

Charlotte Beadle.


Above: Henry Moore

& Charlotte Beadle -

3rd Place

Above: Alex & Josie

Toogood - 1st Place

Below: Charlotte


Sponsored by Brickfields and Froghill - EQUESTRIAN

First Hunt of the season...

The fifth of November was a date to

remember not just for bonfire-goers – but

also for the Isle of Wight Fox Hounds, who

were holding their first meeting of the

season on that day. The inaugural meet

attracted a strong turnout, proving that

hunting is still an extremely popular sport

on the Island – although, in line with the

new regulations, drag hunting was the order

of the day.

Riders of all ages (from young children to

senior citizens) and from a wide range of

backgrounds gathered for the event -

suggesting that this is a sport that’s highly

unlikely to disappear from the Island, no

matter what legislation is introduced.

The meeting attracted only two protesters,

armed with video camera and GPS (Global

Positioning System).

Left: Ellie Trousdale - Right: Johan Christophson.

Left: Phil Legge with Anna Reed winner

of the Isle of Wight Point to Point Cup.

Above: Sharon Begley.

Right: Zoe Trousdale leading Ellie

around followed by Anna Reed.

Middle - Left: A great turnout with 40

riders, and 200 followers.

Middle - Courtney Sanderson.

Middle - Right: Mark Dibbens - This is

the only picture from 12 that we took

where he is not eating!




Island’s own

Batman and


“I love bats. People need to be aware of

what an important job they do”

With their spooky, horror-film associations, bats have suffered from

a pretty bad press. In fact many people find them seriously spooky.

But not Graham and Donna Street - they absolutely love the furry

little creatures, which is why they set up the Isle of Wight Bat

Hospital in 1997 to care for sick and injured ones.

Since then, their home has been converted into a veritable bat haven

- so much so that the bats have more space in the home than

Graham and Donna do! All the couple's work is done for the love of

bats, since there is no funding available, and all costs have to be

raised by charity events.

They operate a 24-hour rescue service, and collect sick and injured

bats at all times of day or night. Whilst the intention is always to

release the bats back into the wild, there are some that are too

damaged to be returned and these bats stay with Graham and Donna

for the rest of their days. Currently they rescue approx 120 bats a

year, most of which have suffered an encounter with a cat, or are

just the victims of old age. There are an amazing 12 bat species on

the Island, and they all feed purely on insects.

Graham advises anyone who spots a bat in difficulty to call him

straight away and not leave it for two or three days

"Bats roost during the day in a dark place, so if you see one during

the day that is not normal" he points out.

Grahams bats can go through up to £35 worth of (mealworms?) a

week, and help with this food bill is always much appreciated. If

you would like to make a small contribution, or would like to help

in the care of injured bats then please contact them on 01983

406756 or mobile 07771 605952. Also call these numbers if you come

across a sick or injured bat.

It's worth bearing in mind that bats are a protected species, and

anyone who disturbs their habitat can face a fine of up to £5,000 …

for each bat.

Be a lady

for all seasons

If all the fashion writers are agreed on one thing this year,

it’s that it is time for women to re-discover the joys of

dressing like a lady. Declaring an end to the rule of the

sloppy, bohemian look, the style writers are unanimous that

the trend for this season has switched to the opposite

extreme … chic, sophisticated and decidedly feminine.

All of which is very good news for Island women, because

they have the perfect source of style inspiration right on

their doorstep.

The Four Seasons fashion outlet at The Old Smithy in

Godshill is an Aladdin’s cave of classy designer labels,

including stylish continental favourites such as Gerry

Webber, Pret a Porter, Bianca, Olsen, Gardeur and Pola.


Owner Rosemary Brooks says she’s lost count of the number

of times tourists have called in at the shop and gone away

saying ruefully: “If only we had a shop like this back home”.

The attraction of the shop – which caters for discerning

women aged around 30 and upwards – is the sheer range of

choice, quality of product, fabulous colours and extensive

range of sizes.

And, because every woman knows that peculiar frustration of

finding a perfect outfit only to despair of ever finding the

right accessories to go with it, Four Seasons also stocks

footwear from Sloppy Joes and Trickers, along with bags and

other finishing-touch jewellery.

Rosemary says the typical Four Seasons customer is a womann



who knows that casual wear can still be smart and elegant – and also

likes to know that she won’t be forever bumping into other women

wearing the same chain store clothes!

“We pride ourselves on being an individual fashion shop” says

Rosemary, who travels to London regularly to select her stock from

the design houses. “In some ways we offer the style and flair you

would find at somewhere like John Lewis. I think that’s why people

are often amazed when they come in for the first time”.

From working women to busy mums or “ladies who lunch”, the Four

Seasons customer is one who puts quality and style above fickle,

“here today, gone tomorrow” trends.

As we are all aware, it can often be false economy to buy cheaper

chain store clothes that quickly look dated or do not wash and wear

well, when for a few pounds more, it’s possible to buy beautifully,

well-cut alternatives in quality fabrics that will give better and

longer service.

Continental women have known this fashion trick for decades – the

art of mixing and matching classic, good quality pieces to achieve a

totally individual look.

If you have never visited Four Seasons before, why not pop along for

a browse and a “dressing-up” session? You’ll find staff more than

accommodating, and advice is on hand if you’d like it.

The old-fashioned customer service at this shop also means that

even if your size is not available, they will try their best to obtain

the item in your size.

Photo location: Our thanks to The Priory Bay Hotel, St Helens.





Visual Impact


Page 36-

Left - Dave:

Shoes - Paul Smith £145

Jeans - Full Circle £75

Shirt - For You £50

Jumper - Penguin £65

Jacket - Gibson £150

Bag - Paul Smith £145

Gloves - Paul Smith £45

Inset: Steve

Jacket - Gibson £150

Shirt - Holland esq. £75

Jeans - Full Circle £85

Belt - Paul Smith £45

Page 37-

Left - Kay

Jeans - Full Circle £70

Top - Ted Baker £60

Right -

Kay -

Shoes - French

Connection £50

Dress - Liu Jo £100

Dave -

Suit - Gibson £200

Shirt - Ted Baker £85

Shoes - Paul Smith


Photo location:

Our thanks to The

Priory Bay Hotel,


The Perfect Fashion Mix


Fashion is always a reflection of the time and place that we live, whether it’s the mini

skirt of the swinging sixties or flares from the funky seventies.So it’s no surprise, with

people travelling the world more and our fascination with celebrities, that fashion is

drawing from a wide source of influences.There's not a uniform, there are just great

looks that you can make your own with the way you mix them up.It’s being individual,

it’s finding those great pieces that together make your own look.It’s all in getting the

perfect mix.


Menswear - 3/4 Watchbell Lane, Newport - 01983 821908

Ladieswear - 20 St Thomas Square, Newport - 01983 525665






Inject some serious style into your wardrobe

with the season’s new look of streamlined and

effortless glamour from Artigiano.

Artigiano’s hugely popular outlet store in Cowes

offers clothes and accessories from previous seasons at

fantastically reduced prices. If you’re in the mood for a

bargain or two, visit the store at 49 High Street, Cowes, PO31

7RR. Tel: 01983 297 773.

The elegant mood that is sweeping the catwalks, of

super-stylish monochrome, luxurious fabrics and

precision tailoring, evokes a classic 1950s and

early 60s Italian chic. Isle of Wight-based fashion label,

Artigiano - which aptly means artisan in Italian - has been

fashion’s best kept secret for 10 years.

From black and white separates and the reintroduction of

the twin-set cardi to vibrant pucci-like prints and

exquisitely tailored suits, this winter is all about ladylike

elegance and dressing up.

Classic combinations

With its graceful, feminine collection, Artigiano is offering

a desirable modern slant on Italian style. Famed for its

beautiful designs made out of delicate fabrics such as silk,

velvet and cashmere, its elegant, easy-to-wear and

affordable creations are fast becoming covetable


A few key pieces and accessories from Artigiano’s

exquisite collection is all you need to look georgeously up

to date and well turned out for the new season and beyond.

For instant evening glamour

choose rich jewel shades and

tactile fabrics:

Above: Plum velvet

evening bag £69

Right: Kingfisher blue taffeta

evening gown £185

Mix cool creams and whites for elegance.

Creamy cashmere-blend sweaters in

a selection of styles, from £39-£99.

Right: Blonde three quarter length

Polar Skin coat £499

For effortless style choose strong

tailored suits for a modern take on a

classic look.

Above Left: A selection of Venetian

glass jewellery, from £75.

Left: Black Tailored Trouser suit. Jacket

£169 and wide leg trousers £75. White

cotton shirt £59 Black velvet ballet

style pumps £95

Right: Tweed jacket with frayed edges

and rose corsage £189. Tweed fitted

knee length skirt £79. Leather gloves



Catalogue or Click

To find out more about Artigiano’s latest

collection or to order a copy of the latest

catalogue, call

(01983) 531 000

quoting reference PR63,

or visit the web site at




Proof it Really Is

a Beautiful Island,

as Liz Earle Naturally Active Skincare

Given the Isle of W ight’s own unique beauty, it was perhaps

“natural” that when two close friends decided to move away from

the capital and base their fledgling beauty business on the

Island, that it would go on to thrive and become the UK’s best

kept beauty secret.

Leading broadcaster and beauty expert Liz Earle, and her

business partner Kim Buckland, co-founded their mail-order,

“naturally active” company in 1995 and the pair decided to make

the Island the home of the company almost immediately. This

key decision proved to be a real plus point for the company.

Firstly, the outdoor life on the Island with its accent on health

and well-being seems to match the company’s philosophy of

creating affordable products that give healthy, glowing skin, no

matter what age or skin type you are. The Island’s colours even

inspired the calm pastel tones of the packaging, which seems to

look so at home in just about ever yone’s bathroom. Secondly,

central to Liz and Kim’s idea for a “beauty company with a

difference”, was their insistence that they would always offer

their customers the ver y best value and ser vice. Instinctively,


Celebrates 10 years of Success…


Liz Earle (left) and

Kim Buckland (right)

Kim and Liz knew that this promise would be far

easier to live up to in the comparatively tranquil,

relaxed setting of the Island, than in the hectic, nonstop

rush of London. Say’s Kim “To offer really good

ser vice, you have to have people with both the right

attitude and the time to really listen to customers and

fortunately the Island has proved to be a rich source

of friendly, well-qualified people”.

The company’s simple formula of effective natural

ingredients and easy to use products that suit

ever ybody, has proved to be so popular that it is

growing rapidly ever y year. There are now over 170

people in the team and there are openings for several

more. Despite selling mainly by mail-order, the

company’s own small shop – Union - in Ryde, gets

around 10 thousand visitors a year with many

customers travelling hundreds of miles, from all over

the countr y just to visit them. In fact such is the

interest in the Island from the brand’s customers that

the company decided to write and produce a guide to

the Island that it sends to customers who want to

visit for the first time. Their user-friendly website

(www.lizearle.com) carries up-to-date highlights of

local events, travel details and lists recommended


The website isn’t the only feature of the company to

win awards. In fact, the Liz Earle Naturally Active

Skincare team can point proudly to numerous awards,

for the quality of ser vice it provides, for the

newsletters, and of course for the skincare range

itself. The brand’s most popular product, the famous

Cleanse and Polish Hot Cloth Cleanser is an award

winner in its own right! It has not only been voted

best beauty product in countless magazine awards,

but has also notched up well over three million sales

on its own.

W ith the colder weather fast approaching, the thought

of a Hot Cloth Cleanser sounds like a real treat, not


Naturally active skincare

Daily essentials Autum/Winter kit


just another beauty chore. W ith this in mind, we asked the

Naturally Active Skincare team if they had any advice to help

ease our skin through the next few months.

In winter, moisture tends to disappear from the skin more

quickly, mainly due to the combination of cold, windy, wintr y

weather and super efficient, modern heating systems. Tr y

following these simple tips to keep your skin looking its best.

Keep a bowl of water near the radiator in your bedroom.

This will boost the humidity in your room and help prevent

your skin from dr ying out overnight.

Daily exfoliation is the key to brighter looking skin in winter

months. The simplest and quickest way to exfoliate is to

cleanse daily with a cotton muslin cloth – save time, cleanse

and exfoliate ever y day in one easy step. Exfoliation also

promotes better absorption of the nourishing protective oils

in any moisturizer you use into the upper epidermal layers of

the skin.

W inter ’s flat grey light often makes our skin look duller

than it really is - especially in the delicate area under the

eyes. Use a nourishing eye cream to plump up and nourish

this noticeable and sensitive area. It’s a good idea to choose

an eye cream with light reflective particles that will disguise

dark shadows.

Our skin is made up of mainly water so it’s important to

remember to still drink enough during the winter months.

Even though we may not feel as thirsty as in the hot summer,

our skin will still dr y out if we don’t take in enough water.

A healthy diet goes a long way to improving skin health

and condition. To provide internal protection from the

elements, take a good quality multi-vitamin and mineral

supplement. Ideally choose one that contains Zinc, Vitamin E

and B-Complex and look to boost your intake of essential

fatty acids from fish Oils or GLA (from either evening

primrose or borage).


Home of natural skincare, 22 Union Street, Ryde. Tel: 01983 813913


Ultimate luxury hamper £135


Best selling, 3 million sold,

Clense & Polish Hot Cloth

Clenser £10.75





Traditional Cider

Making Season

The people at Brickfields have recently revived the ancient craft of

traditional cider making, using a method that dates back 150 years.

They previously produced the cider from 1980-1998, and have just

started brewing again this year. The strong cider is produced using

traditional machinery that’s driven by horse power – Prince the

handsome shire horse to be precise.

In days gone by, the machine would have been towed from farm to

farm, since most farmers did not have a pulping machine of their


The apples used in the process do not come from the Island, as the

soil here is not right for producing good cider fruit. Instead, they are

shipped in by the ton from Herefordshire – because it takes a hefty

six hundredweight of apples to produce each 100 gallons of cider.

Cider dates back centuries and was used in earlier days as a form of

currency. At one time, cider was more popular than water, since the

latter was often either polluted or simply not available. An old trick

that used to be employed years ago was to place a piece of pork

belly into the barrel, to give the cider more flavour and a bit more of

a kick!

The way the cider is produced at Brickfields is exactly how it would

have been done all those years ago. At its absolute best, the cider

produced is sharp and makes a perfect accompaniment to bread and

cheese, as well as being good as a punch base. However even if a

barrel gets air into it, all is not lost, as the cider then turns to cider

vinegar, which is good for all kinds of ailments in humans and


Once the apples have been pressed,

the cider is then put into the

barrels and left to ferment for

about three months, at which point

it can be consumed. Whilst cider

can actually be kept in the barrel

for up to 10 years, this does not

improve the quality, and it is really

better to drink it within 12 months.

If you fancy some original cider

with a real horse’s kick then

contact Brickfields on 01983 566801

Le ft: here you can

see Les Legge

transferring the

pressed cider from

the pulper to the

wooden casks for

the three-month

fermentation stage.

The barrels have to

remain airtight

throughout the

process, so they are

topped up with water

to remove any air.

Below : The cheese

block - made from

horse hair - comes

under immense

pressure, so the

apple juice trickles

into the wooden

barrels below.

Far Left T op : Les

Legge with some

enthusiastic cider


Far Left Bottom:

Prince the Shire hard

at work.




Battle Royal for

Mike’s limited editions!

Isle of Wight-based marine artist Mike Miller tackled one of his

most ambitious projects to date when he set about capturing the

awesome spectacle of the Fleet Review at the 2005 Trafalgar

celebrations in Portsmouth Harbour this summer.

Mike’s resulting 5 ft x 2ft canvas, which took a mind-boggling

total of 480 hours to paint, features over 50 ships, set against the

magnificent new landmark Spinnaker Tower. The original is due

to be auctioned at Bonham’s in London and is expected to fetch

a price of between £25,000 and £30,000.

However, before the original went off to London, Mike

commissioned a limited edition run of just 100 from print

specialist Anthony Goddard, and these signed and numbered

copies are now selling fast to collectors.

In fact, such is the interest in the subject of the painting that

Mike has since been asked for a night-time scene of the Trafalgar

event, featuring the magnificent firework display.

Mike, who came to the Island at the age of 10, studied art in

London before training as a boat builder in Cowes – a trade that

took him all over the world, including the West Indies, where he

built a boatyard in Antigua. This background – added to his skill

as a sailor - has been vital in his subsequent career as a marine

artist. As he says: “It’s the reason I get it right”.

He returned to his artistic roots when he opened the Marine

Gallery in Cowes in 1979, and it was there that he began

attracting many long-term commissioning clients, including

members of the royalty.

In 1987 he moved to Lymington where he met and married

actress Jennifer Cresswell, the long-standing hostess of the TV

game show Sale of the Century.

They returned to the Island in 1994 with their then six year-old

daughter, when Mike opened his second gallery, Seaview Fine


Two years ago, he gave up the gallery to concentrate on his

painting, which he now does at his home-based studio in


He continues to work for high-profile clients, including British

and overseas Royals including HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, King

Juan Carlos of Spain and King Constantine of Greece.


The limited edition print is available in three formats all on

canvas: rolled up in a tube, on a stretcher, or framed. Prices start

form £500. For more information or to order, contact Mike on

01983 613666.

Ageless world of a

Master Thatcher

Glorious golden thatch is arguably the most attractive roofing material

going. It's almost certainly the oldest type of roofing still in regular

use in this country, and to homesick ex-patriots and Anglophiles the

world over, the snug look of a cosy collection of thatched homes

gathered round the village church still presents a vivid image of rural


But thatch is far more than this. It is the archetypal roofing material. In

Britain, archaeologists have found evidence of buildings with straw roof

coverings dating back to 500 BC, and today there are known to be at

least 30,000 thatched buildings in England alone, some 24,000 of which

are listed. Far from being a dying craft, thatch is thriving.

Master Thatcher Steven Greenen has been thatching Island roofs for over

28 years, starting at the age of 14 by helping his uncle, a well-known

Island thatcher who has since retired. Steve loves his work, and even

after all these years, he still loves to stand back when he has finished a

job and admire the wonderful look of a thatched roof. Demand for his

craftsman service is so strong that he has to book jobs up to a year in


Steve explains that a thatched roof has the same substructure as a

normal roof, but that instead of laying roof tiles, reed or straw is used.

In previous times, more straw would have been used, but most roofs now

are re-laid with reed as it is stronger and lasts longer (anything up to 40

years whereas straw lasts 20 years). Reed also keeps the wildlife out

because it is much harder than straw.

If you are thinking of purchasing a thatched property you can always

call Steve to advise on the condition of the roof. However, as a quick

guide, the signs of a failing thatched roof are: gulleys forming in the

straw or reed, spires poking through, or maybe just a generally untidy

look. The roof itself can be either repaired or re-laid, and as a guide, the

average cost of re-laying a roof is around £7.00 per square foot. So an

average roof of 1600 sq ft would cost in the region of £12,000, and take

anywhere between 4-6 weeks to complete. One part of the roof that

would require replacing about every 10 years is the ridge, which takes

the brunt of the weather in the winter months.

When a roof is re-thatched, only the first two or perhaps three layers are

removed. Each layer is about 3-4 inches thick, so you can see some

buildings where the thatch is up to a hefty 3-4ft thick. It may look very

heavy but in fact, thatch is much lighter than standard roof tiles.

Apart from their chocolate box looks, thatched roofs provide good

insulation in the winter and keep the building cool in the summer, and

because the insurance market has become so competitive it is now no

longer a problem to insure, although it will always be slightly more

expensive than a conventional roof.

Telephone Steve Greenen on: 01983 822571

Mobile: 07971 789792




What can I do to

sell my house?

We’ve all heard tales of friends who put their property on the market one day

and had the SOLD sign up the next – but with the market now slowing down to

a more realistic pace, it may take a little more time, effort and attention to

detail to clinch that sale.

So how do you make sure YOUR home is at the top

of a buyer’s “want to see” list?

1. Choose the right

estate agent

This is the first vital decision you’ll need

to make. Take a look at what’s on the

books of several local agents and choose

one that seems to focus on properties of a

similar type to yours. There’s little use in

instructing an agent who normally markets

trendy apartments or country estates, if

yours is a traditional 3-bed semi!

Also, remember that you need to have a

rapport with your chosen estate agent, so

choose one you can communicate easily

with, and who, you feel, is on your

wavelength. After all, the agent will

effectively become your business partner

during the selling process, and if

communication is poor, then working

conditions are hardly going to be easy. Ask


yourself if you believe in your agent’s

ability to sell your property.

2. Get the price right

Once you have decided upon your agent,

the next step is setting an asking price for

your home. The usual advice is to

approach three local agents for a valuation

and take an average. Bear in mind,

though, that valuing property is not an

exact science, which is why agents’

valuations may show a 10% or in some

cases, even 20% difference. The

temptation is always to go for the higher

valuation, but remember that agents

sometimes value on the high side in order

to get an instruction. Often, these are

the agents who may call you after a

couple of weeks of marketing, to suggest a

price reduction. Bear in mind that buyers

are currently spoilt for choice as there is

much more property on the market, so

valuing realistically is more likely to get

them through your door. One way of

getting a realistic valuation is to contact

a local qualified surveyor. This will cost

you, but will give their valuation based

upon past history, and his or her inside

knowledge of similar properties that have

sold in the area. Or, do some DIY detective

work and find out what similar properties

in your area have sold for (rather than

been marketed at). Often, though, simply

averaging out the three valuations from

the local estate agents will give you the

best selling price. By now, you should

have the right agent, selling at the right


3. Listen to the experts!

Once you are this far down the line, it is

important that you listen to your estate

agent - after all you have now effectively

employed them to do a job. Your estate

agent spends all day every day looking at

other people’s houses, and they get to know

what will attract or put off a buyer – so ask

if there are any improvements you can make

to pep up the appeal of your home. There

may be something glaringly obvious that you

don’t see because you live with it, but which

an agent will pick up instantly.

The agent will be aware of the average

buyers’ favourite colours and design features,

and can often come up with easy and

inexpensive ideas you can carry out to

present your living space in the best possible

light. Remember, you’re going to be paying

for your agency service - so make good use

of it! If you co-operate and work with your

agency, you’ll find that they are more willing

to work harder to sell your property, because

they can see that you are putting in the


4. Re-decorate

Everyone knows that when new owners move

in, out go the carpets, the colours schemes –

sometimes even the bathroom or kitchen. So

why re-decorate, you may ask? Well, houses

are no different from anything else we buy,

and the more co-ordinated, clean and

presentable they are, the more they appeal

to the eye. Would you buy a new car with

dents and scratches and a filthy interior?

No! So why would you expect someone to

buy your property if it’s looking unloved,

unkempt and rough around the edges? Scary

as it sounds, it may be advisable to consider

re-decorating the key rooms to freshen them

up. You can do this on a strict budget by

opting for a simple re-paint job in light,

uplifting neutral shades, and adding in some

contemporary accessories such as cushions,

lamps, a rug, some potted plants and vases –

which of course you will take away with you

5. Keep it simple

Often, showing your home at its best will

mean you need to de-clutter and

depersonalise. A would-be buyer needs to be

able to imagine their own possessions in

your home, and if it’s over-stuffed with

yours, that becomes difficult. To de-clutter,

contact your local removal company and

organise a storage crate, then go through

your property and remove anything that isn’t

used from day to day. This will instantly

make the property look larger and more airy.

Secondly de-personalise, which may also

mean a re-paint job in more neutral tones if

you have individualistic purple or orange

colour schemes. It may also be a good idea

to have the carpets cleaned, and don't forget

to clean the bathrooms and toilets, and to

keep the windows sparkling. The cost of the

paint and carpet cleaning will be around

£400-500, but this may well make a

difference to the price you can sell for. Don't

forget, we are now in a buyers’ market, which

makes it more important than ever that your

property stands out from the rest.

6. House Dressers

If you do not have the time, or feel that

decorating and re-styling are not your strong

points, then you might consider calling on

the expert services of a house dresser. These

professionals will view your property as a

buyer would, and then discuss with you the

possible ways that your house could be

improved with a budget of around £1,000.

This investment could in some cases achieve

an additional £5,000 on the price of your

property, and in a toughening market may

well be the best way of making your home

more appealing.


Interior pictures

supplied by Pittis

Estate Agents and

Fox Property



Watergate Road £360,000

Lounge, Dining Room, Study/3rd Reception, 4

Bedrooms, Single Garage.

Newport Office: 01983 528888

Totland £335,000

2 Receptions, 4 Bedrooms, En-Suite, Utility

Room, Garage, Gardens.

Freshwater Office: 01983 756222

Shide O.I.R.O £349,950

Lounge, Dining Room, 3/4 Bedrooms, Attic

Room, Double Garage.

Newport Office: 01983 528888


Wootton Bridge £495,000

Modernised sympathetically by present owners approximately 2 1/2 years ago, viewing is

essential to appreciate the quality of this home - one of the many delightful features of this

property is the rear garden laid to lawn surrounded by a variety of mature trees, bushes,

and shrubs, plus swimming pool. Other benefits include a fitted kitchen, plus separate

utility room, en-suite shower.

Ryde Office: 01983 564646

Whitwell, Newport Road £365,000

A period property set in a semi-rural location on the outskirts of Whitwell. Benefits include 4

bedrooms ( 3 En-suite), 3 Receptions, detached garage and gardens. Open countryside

views can be enjoyed from various positions within the elevated grounds.

Shanklin Office: 01983 868777

Offices in: Newport - Bembridge - Shanklin - Sandown - Cowes - Ryde - Freshwater

Fishbourne, Guide £575,000 to £625,000

Built during the late 1970's and surrounded by mature trees, bushes, and shrubs, the

garden is certainly a feature not to be missed overlooking its own natural pond with

mallards. The property also benefits from a 24' x 17' lounge/dining room, plus 2 further

reception rooms, kitchen with Aga, and 3 bathrooms. Chain free.

Ryde Office: 01983 564646

Gurnard £550,000

A unique home offering uninterrupted and outstanding views over the busy solent.

Includes a large kitchen /breakfast room separate dining room conservatory , 3 large

bedrooms, 4th bedroom/study an interesting garden room ideal for entertaining and a wrap

around balcony/terrace from where the yachting can be viewed and enjoyed..

Cowes Office: 01983 292345

Ryde £445,000

Wootton £439,950

Carisbrooke £399,000


3 Bedrooms, 22’ Living Room, Dining Room,

Secondary Accommodation which is a 1 Bed

Bungalow. Ryde Office: 01983 564646

Lounge, Dining Room, 4 Bedrooms,

Study/Bedroom 5, Utility Room, Palm House.

Ryde Office: 01983 564646

Lounge with Balcony, 4 Bedrooms, En-Suite

Shower Room, Modern Build.

Newport Office: 01983 528888

D o y o u v a l u e y o u r h o m e ? W e d o F R E E o f c h a r g e



prestige department

Offices: Newport - Ryde - Cowes - Freshwater

Newport Office - 01983 524000


A well maintained proper ty in a

great location.

Quarr Road


3 Beds

En-suite/dressing room

Family bathroom

Sitting room/bedroom 4

Utility room

Large Gardens

Gui de Price £4 10, 000

Ryde Office - 01983 811811

Location, location, location

3 acres and country views.



Set in 3 acres of land

Detached 4 bedroom bungalow

Stable block for 2 horses

Large lounge


Guide Pri ce £49 5,00 0

Ryde Offic e - 01983 811811

Ryde Office - 01983 811811


prestige department


Cowes Office - 01983 292929


A lovely detached home in a

quiet rural location.

Alverstone Garden Village

4 Beds


2 Receptions

Games Room

Large Garden

Guide Pri ce £ 35 8,00 0

Newport Office - 01983 524000

A beautifully presented family

home in a quiet rural setting.

Staplers Road


Open Plan living and dining room

Sun lounge - pool room

3 bedrooms

En-Suite and family bathroom

Parking and gardens

Gui de Price £4 25, 000

Newport Offic e - 01983 524000

Freshwater Office - 01983 759618

freshwater@foxproperty.co.uk 51


B a r r a t t f i x e s i t

f o r f i r s t t i m e

b u y e r s

The exciting new Marlborough Road development in popular Ryde

has a selection of stylish brand new homes that offer superb

value for money in one of the UK's most expensive regions.

Many first time buyers have been pushed out of the market, resulting

in the island's younger residents either putting off buying a home of

their own or heading across the water to the main land to find more

affordable properties.

However the one and two bedroom homes at Barratt Homes,

Southampton's latest Isle of Wight venture come with the promise of

incredible offers that could be the answer to first time buyers'


Mark Cutler is one buyer that has already benefited from such an


"After being knocked back by other house builders I was on the

verge of giving up," said 27 year-old Mark Cutler. "They told me I

couldn't afford any of their properties," he added.

Barratt's Parent Support scheme helps first time buyers get on to the

first rung of the ladder. Mark had been looking for over 12 months at

new build and older properties but nothing was within his budget.

The scheme works by using the equity held in the parent's home as a

guarantee against the new property.

"My parents needed no convincing, they wanted to see me investing

in my future rather than wasting money on rent. That's what they

said anyway, maybe they were just keen to get rid of me," he jokes.

Barratt have also provided me with kitchen appliances and carpets

throughout," says Mark. "I'm now in a position I thought I would


never get to, living in my own brand new home, with comfortable

mortgage repayments"

Mark is joined by many other young people that thought owning

their first home was a distant dream but proven wrong thanks to

Barratt Homes.

If a first time buyer does want to go it alone then Barratt Homes

have other deals that can also help.

Hamble Le Rice in Hampshire, like much of the Isle of Wight, is a

highly popular sailing spot and has seen house prices rocket in

recent years. Kate Silvers, 26, has always wanted to live there, but

being such a desirable area, first time buyers like Kate can find

buying a property extremely difficult.

Kate found a stunning new apartment which she could afford thanks

to Barratt Home's fantastic 'First Time Buyers' package which included

payment of stamp duty, legal fees, survey fees, removal costs as well

as a 5% deposit paid. Barratt Homes also have a panel of solicitors

for you to choose from and free mortgage advice from one of a

number of independent advisors.

"I never thought I would be able to afford a home like this. The First

Time Buyers package from Barratt Homes is so good that a couple of

my friends are now looking to buy an apartment with Barratt!"

Barratt Homes have a number of different purchase packages aimed

at making the buying process as easy and manageable as possible for

any house hunter and tailored to meet a variety of different needs.

"It makes business sense for us to support the next

generation of home owners, after all they are also our future

customers," said Andrew Wainwright, sales director for

Barratt Home, Southampton.

"But as a father I also know how keen I am for my children

to get onto the property ladder and realise how increasingly

difficult it is for young people to do so. Obviously as a

business we have to make profitable decisions but it is great

when something like our first time buyer deals not only

make business sense but also genuinely help people,"

Andrew concludes.

To find out more about the properties and deals available at

Marlborough Road visit www.barratthomes.co.uk or call the

sales office on 01983 618769.


Far left: A typical lounge from one of Barratt Homes' one or two

bedroom apartments

Above: Mark Cutler is really pleased with his first home thanks to the

support he got from Barratt Homes

Below: Kate Silvers (far left) with her mum and three friends at the

Isle of Wight Airshow; when she bought her home in Hamble she

entered a free prize draw for tickets and helicopter flight at this

year's Isle of Wight Airshow.



Haddon Lake House

Whatever happened to the St. Lawrence

‘Tropical Bird Par k’ attraction, after it closed its

doors for the last time almost 10 years ago?

The site of this for mer Victorian garden,

complete with third of an acre lake, walled

garden and woodland walks has recently

undergone a dramatic restoration and

transfor mation to become Haddon Lake House,

the home of, Phillippa and Stephen Lamber t

The inspiration for this unique ‘self-build’ house

came from architect Michael Rainey who

followed Phillippa’s brief to design a Japanese

influenced ‘boathouse’ that decks out over the


lake to the west, over looks the walled garden to

the east, and appears to float effor tlessly on

the water. The interior, filled with light and the

reflections of the water, has a cohesive palette

of natural materials and glass surfaces. These

glorious materials tie the whole structure to its

environment, producing a cool, contemporar y

building that blends seamlessly with its


The newly restored gardens are open by

arrangement and without charge for schools and

other interested groups. Those wishing to visit

should call Phillippa on 01983 855151.

Photographs by Jessica Dobbs




Wilmington Heights

a prestige new


Stephenson Developments begins

its first project on the Isle of Wight with a

development of 6 luxury apartments and

one penthouse nestling along the most

picturesque Turf Walk in Totland, with

unspoilt countryside offering very

accessible fabulous walks and mainland

ferry. This is an opportunity to purchase

that should not be overlooked by any

discerning buyer seeking something quite


Nearby Freshwater Bay boasts one of the

Island's finest beaches enveloped by the

beautiful Tennyson Down. Local facilities

include two golf courses, one with

breathtaking views. For those with

enthusiasm for fitness there is a choice of

local health clubs, gymnasiums and spa.

The county town of Newport is just twenty

five minutes drive away with its own wealth

of history and shops. For the yachting

fraternity both Yarmouth and ferry linked

Lymington offer excellent clubs with

facilities for both individuals and families.


Wilmington Heights has much more to offer than the obvious high specification

and fabulous location.

For further details please call Sarah Wratten, Fox Property on 01983 759618



“Kingsview”in Ventnor, is the latest

project by Vectis Developments offering

buyers the chance to live in luxury. In

total there are 18 apartments consisting

of 2 penthouses, 3-three bedroom

apartments, 10-two-bedroom apartments

and 3-one bedroom apartments each

having their own outside living areas or

balconies. In addition each apartment

benefits from its own allocated and

secure parking area. A passenger lift

serves all floors. The town of Ventnor is

situated on the Islands southern coast

where it enjoys an almost sub-tropical

climate. Surrounding Kingsview are

stunning geological features together

with superb coastal and sea views.

Anyone looking for modern living within a

high-tech development, with an Art Deco

theme, should make a visit to Kingsview.

Due to the demand, which has led to

successful sales, there are only two

apartments remaining. The first is a

three-bedroom apartment situated on the

first floor. One of the main features is

the 180-degree semi-circular window

overlooking the bay with stunning sea

views. In addition there is a balcony

with lighting, power point and again with

views over the bay. The master bedroom

benefits from an en-suite bathroom and

there is a door that leads out onto the


The last apartment is a luxurious

penthouse that enjoys stunning views of

St Boniface Down and Ventnor Bay. The

accommodation includes a fitted kitchen

offering a range of fitted units together

with an integrated dishwasher, stainless

Top: View of Ventnor Bay from

lounge window.

A bove: Huge panoramic window with

views onto Ventnor bay.

Right: Modern bathroom.

Contact Pittis on 01983 868777

steel oven and grill with touch hob,

extractor, microwave and ‘Smeg’

fridge/freezer. There is also a separate

utility with a fitted washer/dryer. The

‘outside living area’ spans to three sides and

again offers outside lights and power point.

Truly a stunning apartment with stunning

views to match.






Luxury hotels and restaurants

that cater to your every whim.

Tourism News

Starting in 2006, we will be expanding this section and turning the

spotlight on the very best of the Island’s accommodation,

restaurants, and leisure attractions. This feature, aimed both at

local residents and visitors to the Island, will be packed with ideas

and suggestions for things to do, places to visit, and eating places to

savour during the winter months and school holidays. As residents,

it’s easy to forget just how spoilt for choice we are on our lovely

Island, so we will offering you timely reminders of what’s out there.

Meanwhile, if you have any feature suggestions or tourism news for

the next issue (Jan/Feb 06), please contact the editor on

0870 112 60 70 or 07976 797455.


- Modern rooms

- Restaurant

- Fine dining

- Private dining

- Widescreen TV’s

- Bar

- Valet parking

- All rooms en-suite


The Pond Cafe

Bonchurch Village Road, Bonchurch

Rating Applied For

Hambrough Road, Ventnor

Tel: 01983 856333

The Hambrough is a brand new Hotel

with views of the bay and within easy

walking distance of Ventnor’s many

attractions. A warm & friendly Hotel

with comfortable bar/lounge, sun

lounge and an enviable reputation.

The Hambrough prides its self on

excellent service.


Experience our sensational fine dining menu in the

fantastic restaurant overlooking the pond in Bonchurch.

Victoria Ave, Shanklin

Tel: 01983 862329 Fax: 01983 866666

- 7 Bedrooms all en-suite - Direct dial telephone

- Colour TV and DVD/CD - Sunbed

- Luxury whirlpool spa - Children not allowed

- Health & beauty salon - Non smoking

Foxhills is a well situated Hotel within easy walking distance of Shanklin's

many attractions. A warm & friendly Hotel with comfortable bar/lounge, sun

lounge and an enviable reputation. Melt away your tensions and clear your

mind in the luxury whirlpool spa and indulge yourself with a choice of health

and beauty treatments and our fast tan sunbed.



ETC - 3 Star

“The Country House

Hotel by the sea”

Two AA Rosettes for

outstanding food.

Stylishly refurbished

country house hotel

in a 70-acre seaside


Private beach.


26 Bedrooms

All en-suite


Eddington Road, St. Helens

Tel: 01983 613146 Fax: 01983 616539



Tel: 855666

Open 7 days a week

10am - late

5 Diamond


Foxhills again

awarded Five Red

Diamonds by the AA

for 2006.

Foxhills provides a perfect year-round short break destination, whether for a

special occasion, a tranquility break, bed and breakfast or business trip.

The attention to detail has earned Foxhills a five diamond gold award from

the English Tourism Council and Five Red Diamonds by the AA - all of which

is thoroughly endorsed by the many delightful messages in their visitors'

book. Foxhills sits beside a wide leafy avenue amidst beautiful gardens

backed by dappled woodland. Imaginatively decorated with excellent

facilities Foxhills offers the highest standards - Foxhills is just a 5 minute

taxi journey from Shanklin station at the terminus of the Island rail line,

with easy connections to Portsmouth, London and the North.

The double and twin rooms are en-suite and all bedrooms have been

beautifully refurbished. They offer direct dial telephone with separate

computer point, colour television, hairdryer, tea/coffee facilities and mini

bar on request. For that special occasion, the Osborne suite offers a four

poster bed, and those little extra touches that add luxury to its Victorian

elegance. All rooms are provided with DVD and CD players. Foxhills hold a

large library of up-to-date DVDs for guests to use.

Luxuriate in the whirlpool spa which is also available for private sessions by

guests. Melt away your tensions, and clear your mind. To complement the

facilities within Foxhills, arrangements have been made for guests to use a

neighbouring swimming pool, sauna and gym (at a small additional cost).

Walks, cycle routes and car tours, have all been researched for you, and route

maps are supplied free of charge. Picnic lunches are also available for those

days out. Riding, flying lessons, plane and helicopter pleasure flights, golf,

and intensive driving courses can be arranged.

Foxhills is fully licensed and can offer a wide range of cocktails, wines,

beers, spirits and soft drinks. Foxhills offer a variety of inclusive packages

including Tranquility, Health and Beauty and New Year Specials. They would

be delighted to send you a mini brochure giving further details on request.

Tel: 01983 862329

Hambrough Hotel

brings touch of

class to Ventnor

What’s happening to Ventnor?

Lately Ventnor seems to be

attracting new business, and the

developers are moving in building

prestige flats and retail outlets. So

not to miss out, the owner of the

popular Pond Cafe in Bonchurch

decided to invest in what I would

personally call a 4 star hotel. The

Hambrough is located just up from

the Esplanade and has beautiful

sea views. Frederic Sol re-furbished

the building to an incredibly high


The hotel its self has a very

upmarket feel about it from the

moment you walk in, clean,

modern and you see straight away

it’s very well run. It’s not a large

hotel, in fact there are only 7

rooms, however the quality and

finish of the rooms are very rarely

seen elsewhere. Rooms 1 and 2 are

straight out of a high class

magazine, wide screen flat panel

televisions, Illy coffee machines,

very expensive en-suites, and the

furniture is solid and well made.

Rooms 1 and 2 benefit from a

balcony which looks out to Ventnor


The hotel boasts a Brasserie and a

fine dining restaurant, which is

open to the general public. The

quality of the food is not an issue

if the The Pond Cafe is anything to

go by. However the ambiance of the

restaurant is completely different

from The Pond Cafe. The French

manager Frederic Sol is very

committed to ensuring that the

whole experience is unforgettable

for both guests and visitors. A

typical 3 course meal will cost no

more than £22.50 a head. The wine

list is also very extensive and

includes many fine wines that

cannot be purchased from your

local dealer. Well worth a visit.

Telephone: 01983 856333




The new



The long awaited new M Class from

Mercedes-Benz made its debut on the

15th of September at the Islands

Mercedes retailer Esplanade in Newport.

The new M class, which will replace the very successful out going

model, will be available in various engines and trim levels. From

SE and sport with even the standard model boasting a very high

level of specification. Prices start from £36,710 for the ML350

which includes 7G-Tronic 7 speed automatic gearbox, gearshift

buttons (DIRECT SELECT) with speedtronic cruse control, alloy

wheels 7 spoke 7.5J*17", electronic four wheel traction control

along with the usual safety features you would expect

on a Mercedes, ASR, ESP, and all the airbags you would

ever need.

There are three engines available from launch, the new 320Cdi

diesel developing 224bhp with a 0-62mph in just 8.6 sec's, along

with the 350 V6 272bhp and 500 V8 306bhp petrol engines.

While the robust engines take care of deliciously sweet power

delivery and you settle into the ergonomically styled seats, you

will be able to look forward to a gentile ride on even the most

bone-jarring routes. Yet more convenience and comfort comes in

the form of the


steering wheel

with the direct

select steering

column gear

selector, as

well as the

refined interior

appointments. For

added peace of mind,

there's the Pre-Safe system

standard on all models.


The new automatic gearbox, which is referred to

as 7G-Tronic, is a 7 speed automatic

transmission. Gears are selected directly

without any perceptible interruption in tractive

power. Should you wish to brake sharply or

accelerate briskly, the gearbox simply skips a

few gears and gives a silky smooth change and

further fuel savings all add up to produce a

winning combination. If however you are

harbouring sporty ambitions, you can manually

down shift using the standard DIRECT-SELECT

buttons on the steering wheel.

Well how would you sum up this new M class,

its got the build quality that you have come to

expect from a Mercedes, the driving dynamics

are superb and ergonomically you would find it

hard to beat, so over all the new M class is in a

class of its own

For information contact:

Esplanade Ltd

Medina Avenue


Isle of Wight

01983 52 32 32






new baby

The 1-Series represents BMW's attempt to

bring premium brand prestige to an even

larger audience. The littlest BMW competes

against VW's Golf, Audi's A3 and high-spec

Focus and Astra models from Ford and


In a sector dominated by front-drivers, the 1-

Series is unique in offering rear-wheel drive

powered by a longitudinally mounted engine in

the front. And it was BMW's aim to make this

the most sporting hatchback in the class, to

which end the 1-Series completed an

astonishing 30,000 miles of testing around the

demanding Nurburgring road race circuit in


The 1-Series is available with 1.6- and 2.0-litre

petrol engines, and a 2.0-litre diesel in 150bhp

or 122 bhp form, the latter badged 318d, and

last but not least the 3.0lt M-Sport, petrol.

Standard equipment includes a six-speed

transmission on all but the entry-level 116i,

run-flat tyres, six airbags, a CD player and an

on-board computer.

This is a genuinely entertaining car to drive.

Combine perfect 50/50 weight distribution with

rear-wheel drive and a long wheelbase with

short overhangs and you get a marvellous

formula for poise and balance on the road.

They are fantastically good to drive, have

distinctive looks, a prestige badge and a 5 star

NCAP rating for safety.

Prices start from £15,995 for a 116i.


Snows BMW

Tel: 01983 522555

BMW cuts a dash in town or

country, while offering superb

comfort levels.




Who's still


at Skoda?

The Fabia is the smart, money-savvy but utterly credible choice in

this class. And speaking of class, like the Polo, the Fabia tends to be

bought by people of all ages, in all professions - it cuts across the

usual snob boundaries to have a near-universal appeal. It's not as

sporty-looking as the Ibiza, but then it doesn't come with its Spanish

twin's boy racer connotations.

The Skoda Fabia shares its basic platform (chassis, floorpan and essential

underpinnings) with both the Volkswagen Polo and the Seat Ibiza, and

most of its engines are common to those ranges too. It's the most familyoriented

of the three, however, coming in roomy five-door hatchback,

conservative four-door saloon or load-lugging compact estate form (the

Polo and Ibiza only come as three- and five-door hatches). Model for

model, it's also the cheapest, though to treat it purely as a cut-price

Volkswagen rather undermines its appeal in its own right.

The extensive engine line-up comprises 1.2 6-valve (54bhp), 1.2 12v

(64bhp), 1.4 16v (75bhp or 100bhp), and 2.0-litre (115bhp) petrol units,

plus the 1.9 SDI (64bhp), 1.4 TDI PD (75bhp), 1.9 TDI (100bhp) and 1.9

TDI vRS (130bhp) diesels. There's also plenty of variation in

specifications, from entry-level models nearer the Skodas of old in terms

of creature comforts right up to fully-loaded, well decked-out top-end


All Fabias have a cable-free drive-by-wire

throttle, which was disconcerting and

dead-feeling to many drivers at first, but

this has now been improved. It has

relatively low repair, service and parts

costs. It also feels well screwed-together,

with a nicely-finished cabin upholstered

in decent fabrics and pleasant plastics - it

certainly isn't cheap and nasty.

Ray Winter from F.H Winter said “Skodas

have come a long way over the last few

years, and the build quality is now second

to none, and value for money is still the

driving force behind the Skoda mark”.

Entry level price for the Skoda Fabia is


Contact: F.H Winter & Son

Havenstreet Garage

Ryde, Isle of Wight.

Tel: 01983 882455


Above: Fabia vRS, it’s quicker than a Mini Cooper S, and

that’s official as the BBC1 motoring series Top Gear proved

fair and square.

Below: Exceptional value for money the 1.2 Fabia Classic,

only £6,995 and includes free air conditioning. Great for

around town, low insurance costs and a combined fuel

figure of 47.1mpg.

L O O K I N G F O R Y O U R Y O U N G S T E R ’ S F I R S T C A R ?

C1 is the answer

This, the littlest in the Citroen range and sister model to

the Toyota Aygo and Peugeot 107, rounds off Citroen's trio

(four if you count the C3 Pluriel) of town cars. It satisfies

the ever-increasing demand for city-dwelling models that

don't break the bank and can transport four adult friends

around without suffocating any one of them. Three- and

five-door models are available, which makes the C1 a worthy

rival to the Kia Picanto and Fiat Panda.

The C1 is mechanically identical to the Aygo and 107,

sharing chassis, engines, and even interior fittings.

Individual character on the Citroen comes in the form of a

bolder grille than the Toyota and slightly smarter headlights

than the 107. It's arguably the best-looking of the three.

The C1's tail lights are also unique.

The little Citroen's engaging, uncomplicated driving

dynamics recommend it for the Island driving scene, while

its low price and straightforward cabin layout will appeal to

first-time buyers and OAPs, Citroen's target buying groups.

The C1's trump card is its lower starting price (the basic

three-door model undercuts the entry-level Aygo).

Two specification levels are available, Vibe and Rhythm, the

latter adding electric windows. Kit includes an MP3compatible

CD player (important for the with-it crowd), two

airbags, central locking, and ABS with brakeforce

distribution and stability control. Air-con is a £500 option

on Rhythm versions, and an extra pair of airbags is standard


Shaun Dove from Central Garage, Newport commented that

“for first time drivers this is the ideal car to start with,

because it’s inexpensive to buy and it’s only group one

insurance, also a major advantage is that you have the

optionof 3 or 5 doors, and we have some very good deals on

the C1 currently running. Entry level price £6,495.

Contact Shaun Dove at Central Garage, Newport

on 01983 526541





Flooring Roofing

Door to Door Leaflets

We can deliver to 67,000

Island homes, and

businesses, good rates.

Tel: 861559

Internet Services

In the next issue... Alex Dyke, we

talk to Alex

about what’s

happening in

his life. Is he

leaving the

Island for the

United States?

Advertise any item for Free on

it’s quick and easy to use - ads include 5 colour pictures

Quick and simple registration, No credit card details required, Trade

and Public welcome, it really does work, try it to believe it...

John Hannam, More great stories

from John Hannam, and we test

drive the new Skoda vRS...

Plus! More great interviews, lots more fashion,

Society - we’re going to photograph well known

Island celebrities at parties/events.

New Sections, Interiors, Farming, Boating...


Tiles, Slates, Felts, Flat Roofing, Guttering, Fascias

Stockists of Eternit Weather Boarding

St Georges Down, Blackwater,

Newport. PO30 3BX

(Down the hill from the quarry)


Find out about

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