J'AIME OCTOBER 2018

jaimemagazine

Your local luxury lifestyle magazine

O C T O B E R 2 0 1 8

J’AIME

Y O U R L O C A L L U X U R Y L I F E S T Y L E M A G A Z I N E

WIN

A BIRMINGHAM

AUTHOR’S CITY

CRIME THRIILERS

A PAMPERING SPA

PACKAGE WORTH

£150

Interior style blooms with

a dark edge for autumn


Welcome to J’AIME

We just love this time of year here at

J’AIME; it’s a time for cosy nights by the

fire sipping a glass or two of full-bodied red

or an indulgent hot chocolate, and a time

where the celebrations come thick and fast

with Halloween just around the corner,

swiftly followed by Bonfire Night and - dare

we whisper it already? - Christmas! If you’re

planning a Halloween bash then check out

our Halloween decor feature from some

stylishly spooky ideas.

This month we also introduce our new

columnist Jack Regan, whose ‘action

man’ lifestyle will see him cover an array

of adrenaline-fuelled activities over the

coming months, starting with a hair-raising

charity abseil in Birmingham for his first

contribution.

We’ve got some fantastic competitions

lined up for you this month, with a bespoke

pampering package at the Hart Spa,

Middleton, and a hair makeover worth up

to £150 at Lewis Moore Salons both up for

grabs.

If you’re game for a laugh then get yourself

down to one of the many great shows at

this year’s Birmingham Improv Festival,

which is in its third year and going from

strength to strength; we’ve also got a pair of

tickets for one of the headline events, the

Olivier Award-winning Showstopper! The

Improvised Musical to give away to one

lucky reader.

Speaking of competitions, congratulations

are in order for our latest winners; Kate

Carr of Streetly scooped the Hampton

Manor stay, Mary Wheeler of Streetly won

the Francesco hair makeover, Suzanne

Herriotts of Lichfield won the Dolphin

Swimware goodies and Michael Kilduff of

Sutton Coldfield was our Yoshi bag winner.

We hope you all enjoy your prizes!

EDITOR: AMY NORBURY

EDITOR@JAIMEMAGAZINE.COM

ADVERTISING: JAN ASHLEY

ADVERTISING@JAIMEMAGAZINE.COM

07388 335 931

DESIGN: DESIGN@JAIMEMAGAZINE.COM

CONTRIBUTORS: MARTIN PLOWMAN, OLIVER

BROAD, LISA PIDDINGTON, PATRICK GAUNT, JACK

REGAN, JILL HARTLEY, LIAM DILLON, TOM LINDSEY

AND RORY MCKERRELL

J’AIME IS PUBLISHED BY ASHBURY

PUBLICATIONS LIMITED AND PRINTED

BY KEP LIMITED, TAMWORTH.

Check us out online at:

WWW.JAIMEMAGAZINE.COM

Find us on

/JAIMEMAGAZINE

@JAIMEMAGAZINE

@JAIMEMAGAZINE

3


CONTENTS

InsideJ’aime this month...

6 AA Abbott - The crime thriller author with a

love of all things Birmingham

12 Property - Property of the month

14 Interiors - Kitchen drama

18 Interiors - Moody blooms

22 Interiors - Spiced Honey

26 Interiors - Spooky style for Halloween

30 Interiors - A new brand in town

32 Food & drink - Reviewing The Wilderness x Liam

Dillon at Sauce Supper Club

34 Food & drink - Cocktail of the month from

Lichfield’s The Spirit Works

36 Food & drink - Venison delights from The

Boat Inn

38 Food & drink - Autumnal wine picks from

Ital Sardo

40 Man on the edge - J’AIME’s new columnist Jack

Regan gets a head for heights

42 Travel - Spanish gems for all year round

46 What’s On - Our pick of events around our

area this month

50 What’s On - The hottest tickets around

Birmingham

52 Competition - Win tickets to Birmingham

Improv Festival

54 Fashion - Seventies style

56 Fashion - A new season round-up from

Nero e Bianco

60 Competition - Win a hair makeover courtesy of

Lewis Moore Salons

62 Beauty - Crowning glory from Harvey Nichols

Birmingham

63 Competition - Win a pamper package at the

Hart Spa

64 In the news - A local businessman tackles

The Italian Job

65 Motors - Martin Plowman’s memories of

racing with a legend

4


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FEATURE

On the crime trail

THE STREETS OF BIRMINGHAM PROVIDE PLENTY OF INSPIRATION FOR CRIME WRITER AA ABBOTT’S

GRIPPING NOVELS - AND HER LATEST TOME IS DUE TO BE LAUNCHED IN THE CITY THIS MONTH.

AMY NORBURY DISCOVERS MORE

BIRMINGHAM’S CANALS

PROVIDE A SETTING FOR

HELEN’S NOVELS

From the leafy environs of the Jewellery Quarter to

the dark and mysterious canalside, the vibrant city

heartland with its independent coffee shops, fantastic

real ale pubs and cocktail bars to secret tunnels

which run under the city centre, Birmingham has a

starring role in AA Abbott’s crime thrillers.

So what better place for the author - better known

to her family and friends as Helen Blenkinsop - to

launch her latest thrilling tome this month.

The Revenge Trail is the fourth book in Helen’s

popular ‘Trail’ series, which sees most of the action

taking place in and around Birmingham including

city centre pub the Craven Arms, Edgbaston

Reservoir, Digbeth, and St Paul’s Square in the city’s

famous Jewellery Quarter.

The book will be launched in Birmingham at a

‘cocktails and crime’ themed event at The Alchemist

in the city centre on Monday, October 1.

The Revenge Trail sees Brummie businessman

Marty Bridges (who loves his Two Towers beer)

become rich selling vodka, but he faces ruin when he

finds poison in his supplies. Glamorous Kat White

can save his business – but she’s the last person Marty

wants to trust.

Meanwhile, Shaun Halloran, the London crime boss

jailed through Kat’s evidence, is still determined to

escape from Belmarsh prison and kill the beautiful

blonde – slowly.

Kat, besotted with Marty’s son, Tim, treads a

tightrope between her relationship and her plans to

make the best vodka in the world. Can she keep her

dreams alive – or is it enough just to keep her life?

The Revenge Trail comes hot on the heels of The

Bride’s Trail, The Vodka Trail and The Grass Trail,

which introduce the characters of Marty, Kat and

Shaun and follow their stories through the murky

underworld of East End London, to Birmingham

and a fictional Soviet Union country.

When we first meet young Kat, she’s living in

London’s smart Fitzrovia and working as a croupier

in Shaun Halloran’s casino while making the extra

money needed to live in the city through sham

marriages to illegal immigrants. And it was this

struggle that sewed the initial seed of inspiration for

6


Helen.

“I worked in London on and

off, and I felt it was quite

fascinating that I was working in

a city where there’s clearly loads

of money, but young people

were having to work really,

really hard and not much of the

money was finding its way to

them,” explains Helen.

“I thought ‘how on earth do

they afford to live in places like

central London’, and the answer

in The Bride’s Trail is that they

do it by going in for all kinds

of side hustles and ending up

on the wrong side of the law, and the wrong side of

some dodgy characters.”

Although not a Brummie by birth - she’s originally

from Luton and now calls Bristol home - the Second

City holds a special place in Helen’s heart.

“I came here to be a student, studying physics at

Birmingham University - which didn’t really work

out because me and physics didn’t get on! - and met

my husband Ian here, so I stayed,” Helen explains.

“Birmingham’s the place that I feel I really did grow

up; it’s the first place I had some money in my pocket

and began to make my own way in the world.”

AUTHOR HELEN BLENKINSOP,

AKA AA ABBOTT

HELEN BLENKINSOP

IN BIRMINGHAM’S

JEWELLERY QUARTER

Helen lived in the Midlands for nearly 20 years; her

son was born in Birmingham and she trained as an

accountant at Price Waterhouse in the city.

“When I was training at Price Waterhouse they

send me to audit a company based just off Holloway

Head, and that little web of streets - Ernest Street

and Florence Street - are quite fascinating because

they’re less than a ten-minute walk from the railway

station but it’s an industrial zone. And it’s one that’s

changing as people realise it’s close to the city centre

and you can build housing and hotels there.

“I decided to set Marty’s business in Florence Street

because I thought it was exactly the kind of place

where a sharp businessman like him would have

bought a cheap property at auction and be sitting on

it for its development potential.

“Then, having set his business there in The Bride’s

Trail in 2013, it turned out that having cheap

property there was attractive to West Midlands Police

and MI5, who were conducting a sting on jihadists in

Birmingham and had set up a fake courier business

in Florence Street!

“Being able to set the story in Birmingham for the

most part was really important to me because I really

love the city and seize any excuse I can to come

back,” adds Helen.

It’s buzzy and dynamic, and there are areas of

beauty; in my books I refer to the hidden beauty of

the Jewellery Quarter.”

Storytelling has been a part of Helen’s life for as long

as she can remember. She grew up in a large family

and, as a child, used her stories to entertain her

siblings.

“Since before I could read, when I was really tiny,

I used to make up little stories,” says Helen. “I’m

the eldest of five kids - my parents had five children

in five years - and I spent my childhood making up

7


stories for my brothers and

sister. I got a lot of kudos

out of it; they loved being

entertained and my parents

loved it because it gave them a

bit of a rest!”

Since self-publishing her first

novel in 2013 - Up In Smoke,

a gripping thriller which looks

at corruption in the cigarette

industry - Helen has been

prolific in her writing, penning

a book a year.

“When I’ve written a crime

thriller I get a minimum of 20

people to read the draft and

give me feedback, and quite

honestly they’re much better books because so many

people have helped me.

“Then there’s a professional edit, and again it makes

for a much better book because my editor is polite,

but savage with it!”

Her readers often compare Helen’s work to the

novels of Ruth Rendell, John Grisham and Jeffery

Archer, to name a few. Another comparison which

often crops up is Robert Galbraith, the nom de

plume used by JK Rowling to publish her very un-

Harry Potter-like contemporary crime fiction series

Cormoran Strike.

And like JK Rowling, whose publishers insisted she

go by two initials rather than her full name, Joanne,

so as not to put off her anticipated target audience

of young boys who might not want to read a book

written by a woman, Helen chose to publish under

the rather anonymous pen name AA Abbott.

“Men do read and enjoy my books,” says Helen. “I

did think using my name might put male readers off,

and studies have shown than men are far less likely to

read a female writer’s work.

“Having said that, although I did come up with a

gender-neutral name, people buy people so I’ve had

to admit to being me! It’s not so much of a secret any

more.”

Helen’s varied career - she’s had some 35 paid jobs

in many different industries - have given her a rich

vein of material for her novels. But there have been

elements which have required more digging to get

right.

Helen says: “Research is vital when I’m writing

about something I don’t know. The Grass Trail

features an obsessive killer desperate to escape from

prison. Luckily, although I’ve never been jailed - that

would be taking research too far! - I had help with

the book from a family friend who is a prison officer.

I also saw a TV film about HMP Belmarsh and read

autobiographies by prisoners who had served time

there, including three former MPs.”

Vodka also plays a starring role in Helen’s novels,

and researching the spirit’s manufacturing process

proved to be much more fun.

“I went on a tour around the Chase Vodka distillery

in Herefordshire, which was a great day out,” says

Helen. “They were really helpful and a lot of what

they told me ended up in the books.”

While the locations in Helen’s novels are familiar, the

rich and vibrant characters are drawn purely from

her imagination.

“I’m really careful because I don’t think it’s fair to

stick my family and friends into books,” explains

Helen.

“Although there occasionally times where something

so unusual happens that it just has to make it into

a book. I can think of two situations, one involving

drinking real ale in the White Horse pub in

Harborne which made it into The Vodka Trail.

“The other situation hasn’t made it into print yet

because it got cut from the draft of The Revenge

Trail so it’ll have to go into the next book.

“When I was working in London there was a sudden

crisis where the defibrillator was needed because a

guy working at another company on the floor above

was having a heart attack. One of the junior lawyers,

James, came to find the first aider, who sat near me

and who had only been trained in first aid the week

before.

“They’ve just found the defibrillator when James’

boss comes storming out of his office asking about

a report. James runs off with the defibrillator, as you

8


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would, and his boss is just standing there.

“I said to him ‘they’re taking the defibrillator to a

heart attack victim to save his life’, and the guy looks

at me and says, ‘what’s that got to do with James, I

want my report!’”

Helen combines writing with her career as an

accountant. After a long stint in the finance industry

working in both Birmingham and London, she now

takes ad hoc freelance contracts to fit around her

writing.

“It’s quite handy because it keeps me connected

to the workplace, and most of my books are set

in the business world. I do sometimes write down

inspiration for situations, but when it comes to

putting them into the books I disguise the situations

so you’d never know what they were based on.

“And it gives me something totally different to do;

writing this latest book was so hard, I was desperate

to get back to some accounting!”

Helen’s books are available in e-book and paperback

formats on Amazon, who have recently seen a five

per cent overall increase in print editions.

Further statistics show that 10 per cent of adults

are dyslexic and traditional publishers won’t print

books for them. Although she is not dyslexic, many

of Helen’s relatives are, which is why - as a selfpublisher

- she has also made her crime thrillers

available in a large print, dyslexia-friendly format.

Dyslexia Awareness Week takes place from October

1 to 7 and provides the opportunity to raise

awareness and understanding of dyslexia and help

to bring about positive change. World Dyslexia

Awareness Day takes place on October 4.

Helen continued: “I’m

so pleased that I can

get to launch The

Revenge Trail during

National Dyslexia

Awareness Week.

This can only help to

highlight the need for a

more dyslexia-friendly

format to cater for all

readers.”

Helen is now working

on the final installment

of the Trail series,

and once she’s put the

characters of Marty,

Kat and Shaun to

bed, she hopes to get

cracking on a new,

standalone novel - once again set in Birmingham.

“For about 30 years I’ve wanted to write a standalone

crime thriller set in the Digbeth area; I had the idea

before Digbeth became trendy, but I think it’ll still

work!

“It’s a book about a serial killer set in Digbeth, so it’s

much darker than anything else I’ve written. There

are murders in all of my books but the body count

isn’t all that high, I think three is about the most I’ve

had so far, whereas this one will be a lot higher.

“And once I’ve got that out of my system, I want to

write some stories about a female private detective.

I’m definitely sticking with the crime thriller genre - a

bit of murder really spices up a book, I think!”

When it comes to reading, crime thrillers are,

unsurprisingly, a particular favourite of Helen’s.

“My guilty pleasure is the blockbusters of the 1980s

like Jackie Collins, so I like something which is pacey,

with a bit of sex and murder in it!” laughs Helen.

“And I enjoy the classics, particularly Thomas Hardy.

His characters go on a journey and they always have

flaws, and it’s their flaws that lead them into sticky

situations and make the stories interesting.

“I realise he was paid by the word so he’d always

use 20 words where one would do, whereas I use as

few words as I can get away with, but I believe in

the same philosophy, that it’s the flaws in a character

which make them interesting and lead to the plot

unfolding.”

The Revenge Trail will be available to buy from

Amazon from October 1. For more details and news of

AA Abbott’s latest releases visit www.aaabbott.co.uk

10


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PROPERTY

Property of the Month

WE TAKE A SNEAKY PEEK AT SOME OF THE HOTTEST PROPERTIES ON THE MARKET

IN THE AREA EACH MONTH. THIS MONTH’S SELECTION IS A AMERICAN-INFLUENCED

CONTEMPORARY PROPERTY IN A SECLUDED SETTING IN WEEFORD

Angels House, Church Hill, Weeford: £1,695,000

On the market with Quantrills Sutton Coldfield: 0121 354 9229

THE AGENT SAYS: Angels House is a truly magnificent

contemporary residence built and designed by the current

owners and incorporating design influences from America’s

West Coast. Superbly presented with many exquisite

features, the property is appointed to an exceptional

standard incorporating state-of-the-art technology.

The Japanese style sitting room is approached through

sliding double doors and has a sunken central seating area,

wall mounted TV and fitted furniture, cast resin flooring

and full width retractable glazed doors to the decked

terrace.

An open plan kitchen and family room offers an exceptional

living space and is fitted with an extensive range of

contemporary cabinets with integrated Miele appliances.

The master bedroom has a built-in cinema system, while

each of the four bedrooms has an en suite.

The leisure complex boasts a spa with large corner wet

room, shower, teak bath with stone walling, inset TV and

glass ceiling above, Klafs sauna, and a gymnasium.

The private landscaped garden extends to approx. 1.72

acres and includes extensive sweeping lawns to the front

and side, shaped lawns to the rear inset with pond, pergola

with gravel pathway, flowering borders and raised beds.

The raised rear decked terrace with heated swimming pool

enjoys magnificent far reaching views over the surrounding

countryside, as does the roof terrace with hot tub.

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12


INTERIORS

BESPOKE SHAKER IN-FRAME KITCHEN WITH

COPPER SINK AND TAPS, BROADWAY KITCHENS.

WWW.BESPOKEKITCHENSBYBROADWAY.COM

Embrace the

dark side

KITCHEN trends have taken a leap into a darker, more

mysterious colour palette, moving away from bright and

airy décor schemes in favour of a much more dramatic

and daring style.

Dark cabinetry has taken over from fresh white as the

choice du jour, with rich navy, moody charcoal grey and

bold black emerging as the top picks. And it doesn’t stop

there. The most stylish kitchens see a full embrace of the

dark side with worktops, walls and even ceilings taking

on a more intense hue. Stainless steel appliances have

also made way for black counterparts, meaning you can

ramp up the darkness to the max.

If you want to experiment with the trend you can learn

to love dark slowly. Try adding black accessories, or even

a black worktop, before you work your way to dramatic

dark cabinetry. Or add a dark wall or two as a quick and

easy way to refresh your kitchen into 2019.

£139

£34.99

£44.50

DOUBLE DIMMER SWITCH,

DOWSING AND REYNOLDS.

WWW.DOWSINGANDREYNOLDS.COM

DARK MARBLE EFFECT

CLOCK, THE FARTHING.

WWW.THEFARTHING.CO.UK

STELTON EMMA ELECTRIC KETTLE,

CLOUDBERRY LIVING.

WWW.CLOUDBERRYLIVING.CO.UK

£49

DIESEL LIVING WITH SELETTI COSMIC

BOWL, AMARA. WWW.AMARA.COM

14


HAND CRAFTED IN THE COTSWOLDS

www.benchwood.co.uk

Enquiries telephone John on 07511 899298


THE ORGANIC COMPANY

ORGANIC COTTON TEA TOWEL.

£7.50, WHITE BLACK GREY.

WWW.WHITEBLACKGREY.CO.UK

£20

£540

£74.49

LIGHTYEARS CARAVAGGIO

PENDANT LIGHT, RUME.

WWW.RUME.CO.UK

£7.50

BURLEY ENAMEL PENDANT LIGHT,

DOWSING AND REYNOLDS.

WWW.DOWSINGANDREYNOLDS.COM

GARDEN TRADING

MILK BOTTLE HOLDER,

WWW.GARDENTRADING.CO.UK

£35

£20

NKUKU BWARI ROUND

MARBLE AND MANGO WOOD

SERVING BOARD, AMARA.

WWW.AMARA.COM

DEBENHAMS TRIVET,

WWW.DEBENHAMS.COM

WEDGWOOD BYZANCE PLATE,

AMARA. WWW.AMARA.COM

£119

£70

£16

£10.99

CULT LIVING HEATHER BAR

STOOL, CULT FURNITURE.

WWW.CULTFURNITURE.COM

MAGNI OBSIDIAN LEATHER KITCHEN DOOR

HANDLES, DOWSING AND REYNOLDS.

WWW.DOWSINGANDREYNOLDS.COM

LUND LONDON LUXE STAINLESS

STEEL TUMBLERS SET, AMARA.

WWW.AMARA.COM

HAMMONDS GIBSON LIVERTON

KITCHEN, COOKES FURNITURE.

WWW.COOKESFURNITURE.CO.UK

THE ORGANIC COMPANY

ORGANIC COTTON TEA TOWEL.

£7.50, WHITE BLACK GREY.

WWW.WHITEBLACKGREY.CO.UK


SIEMENS STUDIOLINE APPLIANCES AND

CERAMIC WORKTOPS, WENTWORTH DESIGNS

AND INTERIORS SUTTON COLDFIELD.

WWW.WENTWORTHDESIGNS.CO.UK

SIEMATIC KITCHEN AT KITCHEN GALLERY

IN MAILBOX BIRMINGHAM, SOLIHULL

AND STRATFORD UPON AVON.

WWW.KITCHENGALLERY.CO.UK

RUST CERAMIC AND SMOOTH PAINTED

LIGHT GREY KITCHEN BY TIPPERS OF LICHFIELD.

WWW.TIPPERS.COM

FURORE HANDLELESS KITCHEN FINISHED

IN MIDNIGHT BLUE. AVAILABLE FROM IKON

KITCHENS OF SUTTON COLDFIELD.

WWW.IKONKITCHENS.NET

CHELTENHAM KITCHEN HANDCRAFTED I

N THE COTSWOLDS BY BENCHWOOD.

WWW.BENCHWOOD.CO.UK


I N T E R I O R S

FLORAL ON ZEBRA CANVAS BY KIRSTEN

STAR, £25, ART WOW. WWW.ARTWOW.CO

Moody

blooms

DARK and moody hues and fabulous florals have

been two of this year’s predominant interiors trends,

and for autumn the two pair together to create a

richly dramatic look dominated by intense hues of

berries, bark and bramble which perfectly encapsulates

the shift in seasons, as the colours of the landscape

changes.

Dramatic and eye-catching, the trend sees nature going

rogue as dark florals bring an exciting edge to your

home style. Lush, romantic and moody in the best way

possible, these are florals that don’t hold back.

Look out for big blousy designs that have a pre-

Raphaelite style; you’ll find them on cushions, bedding

and on walls as wallpaper and even murals. In contrast

to summer’s botanical prints, the tones are dark and

rich rather than bold and vibrant, creating a cosy,

cosseted feel. Keep the rest of the look simple, and

suitably dark, so the florals become the star and pick

out key colours to accessorise with.

£19.50

£12

£30

AUBURN FLORAL VELVET

CUSHION, DUNELM.

WWW.DUNELM.COM

LARGE FLORENCE FLORAL VASE,

MARKS AND SPENCER.

WWW.MARKSANDSPENCER.COM

INKY FLORAL CLOCK BY

ELEANOR SOPER, ART WOW.

WWW.ARTWOW.CO

18


£8

£55

£1,940

BURLEIGH CALICO

TEAPOT, SOHO HOUSE.

WWW.SOHOHOME.COM

KATIE ALICE WILD APRICITY NAVY

FLORAL DINNER PLATE, CREATIVE TOPS.

WWW.CREATIVE-TOPS.COM

SELF ARMCHAIR, RUME.

WWW.RUME.CO.UK

£110

£35

FLORENTINA TEAL TIGERS EYE CUSHION,

JOHN LEWIS. WWW.JOHNLEWIS.COM

£270

MOMOKA FLORAL

SCREEN, ARTHOUSE.

WWW.ARTHOUSE.COM

£4.99

SOMERS MIDNIGHT RUG,

LAURA ASHLEY.

WWW.LAURAASHLEY.COM

POPPY CERAMIC DOOR KNOB,

IAN SNOW. WWW.IANSNOW.COM

ROMULUS DAYBED, £1,650, RUME.

WWW.RUME.CO.UK


RENAISSANCE FLORAL CUSHION, £45,

THE FRENCH BEDROOM CO.

WWW.FRENCHBEDROOMCOMPANY.CO.UK

MOMOKA VELVET CUSHION, £15,

ARTHOUSE. WWW.ARTHOUSE.COM

RENAISSANCE FLORAL CUSHION, £45,

THE FRENCH BEDROOM CO.

WWW.FRENCHBEDROOMCOMPANY.CO.UK

FLORAL ART PRINT, £5, ABSTRACT HOUSE.

WWW.ABSTRACTHOUSE.COM

AVA MARIKA SUPERSIZED MOODY FLORAL

WALLPAPER, £75, WOODCHIP AND MAGNOLIA.

WWW.WOODCHIPANDMAGNOLIA.CO.UK

BLUEBELLGRAY PEGGY MIDNIGHT

DUVET COVER AND PILLOWCASE SET,

£135, HURN & HURN.

WWW.HURNANDHURN.COM


I N T E R I O R S

DULUX HAS NAMED

SPICED HONEY AS ITS

COLOUR OF THE YEAR

FOR 2019.

A touch

of spice

DULUX has named ‘Spiced Honey’ as its Colour

of the Year for 2019, described as being “perfect for

creating a relaxed, cosy atmosphere in places where we

like to think, dream, love and act”.

A welcome contrast to the cool greys which have

dominated the neutrals palette in recent years, Spiced

Honey is a warm blend of rich caramel and amber

tones which is the ideal backdrop for an inviting

living space. The contemporary hue works well with

a broad spectrum of complementary colours and can

be calm and nourishing or stimulating and energising,

depending on the palette and light surrounding it.

Marianne Shillingford, creative director for Dulux

UK, says Spiced Honey has a ‘raw, natural quality

that works like a warm neutral,’ making it adaptable

to pairing with different materials and styles of

decoration.

To emphasise the warmth of the tone, team with brass

or gold metallics, natural woods and rich leathers and

velvets in tan or caramel hues to create a luxuriously

cosy space. A splash of white or off-white adds to the

contemporary feel.

£POA

AMBER TUMBLER, ABODE LIVING.

WWW.ABODELIVING.CO.UK

£10

ARDECHE 1 LIGHT LARGE PENDANT,

DAR LIGHTING. WWW.DARLIGHTING.CO.UK

DALYAN DINING CHAIR,

COVET HOUSE.

WWW.COVETHOUSE.EU

DULUX SPICED

HONEY 2.5L.

WWW.DULUX.CO.UK

£27.56

£138

22


When you buy a complete bathroom

during October. *

(That’ll keep you toasty)

*Terms apply, see in-store for details

Ripples Birmingham c/o Cookes Furniture, 28 Goosemoor Lane,

Erdington, Birmingham B23 5PN Tel: 0121 2505056

Ripples Solihull, 1693-1695 High Street,

Knowle, Solihull B93 0LN Tel: 01564 730223

www.ripplesbathrooms.com


SANDOWN LEATHER CARVER

CHAIR, PEPPERMILL INTERIORS,

BURNTWOOD BUSINESS PARK.

WWW.PEPPERMILLINTERIORS.COM

£179

£POA

MALAY SUSY ARMCHAIR,

RUG’SOCIETY.

WWW.RUGSOCIETY.EU

£260

URBAN AVENUE SUNDAY

SQUARES THROW,

WWW.URBANAVENUE.CO.UK

£45

SLOAN TAUPE RUG, MODERN RUGS.

WWW.MODERN-RUGS.CO.UK

£POA

OLSSON & JENSEN

TALL STONEWARE JUG,

ECLECT DESIGN.

WWW.ECLECTDESIGN.COM

£59

LAUTNER COFFEE TABLE, ESSENTIAL HOME.

WWW.ESSENTIALHOME.EU

DULUX SPICED HONEY HAS A RAW,

NATURAL QUALITY THAT WORKS LIKE

A WARM NEUTRAL

24


BROADWAY KITCHENS

MANUFACTURER OF LUXURY BESPOKE KITCHENS

Visit our Birmingham showroom to see and feel the quality.

Call to discuss your kitchen project and book a FREE,

no-obligation design consultation today!

SUTTON COLDFIELD 0121 353 4999

www.bespokekitchensbybroadway.com


I N T E R I O R S

Fright night

PRE LIT BLACK TREE, £22, GLASS SKULL

TEALIGHT HOLDER, £5, HALLOWEEN

HANGING DECORATIONS 12 PACK, £8,

HD BAT SEQUIN HANGING DECORATION,

£2.50, 10 GLITTER SPIDERS IN MESH, £4,

ALL JOHN LEWIS.

WWW.JOHNLEWIS.COM

style

WHETHER you’re planning a Halloween bash or just

want to add a spooky touch to your home decor as the

nights draw in, it’s the time of year when pumpkins,

skulls and spiders take centre stage.

Not a fan of orange and purple? Bypass Halloween’s

tendency toward the cheesy by embracing a matte

black palette - so on trend for 2018. The decorations

can be as subtle (think classy decanters labeled as

poison that you can re-use) or obvious (hello, spider

web placemats!) as you wish.

And who says Halloween has to be all dust and

cobwebs? For a more polished approach, incorporate

pops of silver, gold, copper, and brass. Or opt for a

natural style, pairing fresh pumpkins in an array of

colours and sizes with foliage and subtle lighting to

create stylish table centrepieces or fireplace displays.

Happy haunting!

METAL HOUSE TEALIGHT

HOLDER, JOHN LEWIS.

WWW.JOHNLEWIS.COM

£15

£8

BLACK OWL, JOHN LEWIS.

WWW.JOHNLEWIS.COM

£65

FELT SPIDER WEB PLACEMATS.

JOHN LEWIS. WWW.JOHNLEWIS.COM

£18

GOLD GLITTER PUMPKIN,

HOMESENSE.

WWW.HOMESENSE.COM

£9.99

CERAMIC HANGING

PUMPKIN TEALIGHT

HOLDERS, £6.60 EACH,

GISELA GRAHAM.

WWW.GISELAGRAHAM.CO.UK

26


£139

£45

SPIDER WEB CANDLE HOLDER,

TK MAXX. WWW.TKMAXX.COM

£9.99

PUMPKIN SERVING DISH,

LAURA ASHLEY.

WWW.LAURAASHLEY.COM

AUTUMN ABUNDANCE WREATH,

BALSAM HILL. WWW.BALSAMHILL.CO.UK

GLITTER HANGING SKULL, SAINSBURY’S.

WWW.SAINSBURYS.CO.UK

BOO HALLOWEEN NEON

LIGHT, LIGHTS4FUN.

WWW.LIGHTS4FUN.CO.UK

£14.99

£3

PUMPKIN FELT BUNTING.

LAURA ASHLEY.

WWW.LAURAASHLEY.COM

£16

BLACK LIT PUMPKIN, JOHN LEWIS.

WWW.JOHNLEWIS.COM

SILVER PUMPKINS.

TK MAXX.

WWW.TKMAXX.COM

£4.99

£25

HALLOWEEN DECORATIONS

FROM A SELECTION

AT SAINSBURY’S.

WWW.SAINSBURYS.CO.UK

TRICK OR TREAT HALLOWEEN

RANGE, FROM £2.99, GINGER RAY.

WWW.GINGERRAY.CO.UK


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I N T E R I O R S

Sumptuous style

It’s not easy to transform your home into

something you love. It’s about creating spaces

your family and friends will adore to be in,

spaces that reflect your lifestyle and taste.

And a luxurious new furniture range which has

just launched at Blackbrook Interiors, combining

sumptuous styling with the utmost in comfort,

will certainly help you make a style statement.

Spink & Edgar Upholstery has launched a

completely new range based on glamorous

modern classics with an art deco twist. Designed

and manufactured at the Tetrad factory, the

collection features GP & J Baker printed fabrics

and sumptuous Italian velvet, combined with the

award-winning Spink & Edgar pocket springs

cleverly placed in the seat and arms providing

unrivalled comfort and support.

The brand new range is exclusively available in

the Midlands at Blackbrook Interiors, one of just

a handful of stockists around the country.

Mike Rowan, owner of Blackbrook Interiors,

said: “This is a brand new furniture range

which has only been available for the last three

months and we are one of less than 30 stockists

throughout the UK where it can be purchased.”

Every piece is meticulously made by hand in

Preston, Lancashire. The seat cushion interiors

contain pocket springs with a feather wrap

along with small HD springs skillfully placed in

arms, back and seat platforms. The result is an

outstandingly supportive and comfortable sit

which retains its shape for years and negates the

need for constant maintenance and plumping.

The collection curates design, taste and style,

bringing a touch of luxury to a space and

boasting a classic contemporary tone with lasting

elegance.

To check out the stunning new range, head over

to Blackbrook Interiors, situated off the A38 at

Weeford, just outside Lichfield.

For more details call 01543 481010 or visit

www.blackbrook-interiors.co.uk

30


OUR NEW BROCHURE IS NOW AVAILABLE

P R E N T I C E

Quality Furniture

01827 287387

enquiry@prentice.co.uk

www.prentice.co.uk


F O O D & D R I N K

Wild and wonderful

INNOVATIVE MEETS CLASSIC AS TWO MIDLANDS HEAVYWEIGHTS JOIN

FORCES FOR A DINING EXPERIENCE TO REMEMBER, SAYS AMY NORBURY

Alex Claridge may not be one of the

most familiar names on the Midlands

dining scene, but he is surely one of the

most exciting. The brains behind The

Wilderness, one of the most innovative

eateries to hit the city in recent memory,

Alex brings a playful, provocative - and

completely delicious - edge to modern

British cuisine.

Influenced by the cultural melting pot

that is the Second City, he pilfers spices,

styles and ingredients from around the

world to create a unique take on fine

dining. Starched linen and gleaming

silverware it ain’t, but The Wilderness

promises a foodie experience unlike

anything else in the Midlands.

So when Sauce Supper Club hit on the idea

of pairing Alex with Lichfield’s very own chef

extraordinaire Liam Dillon - chef patron of The

Boat Inn, who has recently been named Best Chef

at the Midlands Food, Drink and Hospitality Awards

ahead of stalwarts including Andy Waters, Aktar

Islam and Nottingham’s two Michelin-starred Sat

Bains - it promised to be an explosive evening of

flavour.

The sell-out event, held on Liam’s home turf at The

Boat, welcomed some 60 diners for a six-course feast

marrying intense flavours, playful ideas and some

seriously off-the-wall presentation.

On arrival, we were greeted with a popcorn

piña colada - a luminous green prosecco-topped

concoction which did indeed have an aroma of

popcorn and taste like a piña colada - and shown to

our table in the dining room which offered a great

view into The Boat’s open kitchen.

First up was a duo of snacks from Liam; his

signature pig’s head and burnt apple cube, followed

by a rather delightful polenta cracker topped

with cod roe and fish skin. Now, while the little

cracker was a wonderful morsel, its puffed, crispy

texture mimicking that of the fish skin, it was the

presentation which really wowed,

as it came balanced atop a bowl

containing a swimming fish - ‘this

is Ronnie’, exclaimed our waiter.

The Wilderness’ yuk sung bun - a

tiny brioche bun filled with quail

yuk sung, scattered with chicken

skin and yeast flakes with a dab of

hoisin sauce - completed a tasty

trio, while a miniature beer-soaked

spelt loaf with whipped chicken

butter was another delight.

So far, so tasty, and we really hadn’t

yet got going.

An amuse bouche from The Boat

of set cheese custard with spiced

carrot and mushroom was a little

32


lacking for me personally - I found the texture a bit

thin, although the carrots were beautifully sweet and

nicely spiced.

But The Wilderness’ tomato and ricotta dish

which followed was simply sublime. Fresh ricotta

paired with an array of tomatoey goodness - a

stunning tomato crisp, incredible ‘sweet and sour’

tomatoes and a tomato version of a Japanese ponzu

citrus sauce - took the humble cheese and tomato

combination to dizzying heights, while an elderflower

granita added a layer of floral sweetness. Clever

cooking indeed.

And from this flavour punch, it was onto a perfectly

executed fish course from The Boat. A ballotine of

sole fillet with brown shrimp, lemon, fish sauce and

oyster emulsion, it was elegant, refined and a real joy

to eat.

The meat course was the intriguingly titled N.A.F.B

from The Wilderness, an explosive combination of

succulent quail breast with butter curry sauce, date

and tamarind puree and dhal samosa with cucumber

foam and powder, and crispy wild rice.

The tongue-in-cheek acronym, our waiter informed

us, stands for Not Another F’ing Balti - something

regular Wilderness diners might be familiar with,

or so said my friend and fellow Supper Club diner

who counts The Wilderness as her favourite dining

experience and has had the dish a time or two before.

And to be perfectly honest, I’d be ecstatic to eat

that glorious anti-balti plateful again, and again.

The quail was a beautifully tender, the butter sauce

silky and rich, with the sweet sharpness from the

puree and the palate-cleansing freshness from the

cucumber providing a wonderful sense of flavour

balance. Add in some crunch from the samosa and

rice - which was rather like a scattering of wild Rice

Krispies - and a decent kick of spice, and it made for

a truly mouth-watering experience.

Desserts were a little slice of heaven; the only

complaint I’d have about Liam’s moreish carrot cake,

with it’s caramelised top and creamy

rum and raisin ice cream would be

that it was far too small a portion.

I could have eaten the marvellous

morsel several times over, but that’s

just being greedy.

The finale was a salty, malty,

chocolatey extravaganza, with a fine

sable biscuit, salted milk sorbet - far

more delicious than it sounds - and

a shard of dried chocolate mousse

which melted on the tongue.

And if that wasn’t enough to leave a

smile on your face, a tray of sweets

appeared to finish off the meal. But

these weren’t any ordinary sweets; the

Turkish Delight was, well, delightful

but it was the rummy gummy bear, made with a

full shot of rum, which was the real punch in the

chops. In an oh-so-good way, of course. Given the

opportunity I wouldn’t stop at just one, hell no, but

too many of those sweet little bears would leave you

floored, I’m sure.

After starting life as a pop-up called Nomad before

a skirmish with a New York hotel of the same

moniker forced a chance of name, The Wilderness

finally settled in its permanent home in the Jewellery

Quarter earlier this year. A cult-like following among

foodie fanatics means that tables are increasingly

difficult to come by, but if you can score a coveted

seat then do. You won’t regret it. Just don’t go if you

fancy a balti.

33


F O O D & D R I N K

Cocktail of the month

TOM LINDSEY AND RORY MCKERRELL, FOUNDERS OF FIFTH SPIRE GIN AND OWNERS OF THE

SPIRIT WORKS BAR IN LICHFIELD, SHARE THEIR PERFECT SERVE OF A TIMELESS CLASSIC

The perfect

Old Fashioned

The Old Fashioned cocktail’s

history stretches back to the

1800s, and its simple formula has

been tinkered with a lot along

the way, but the best ones are

the simple ones, consisting of just

whiskey (other aged spirits also

work), sugar, and bitters. The key

thing is to use solid choices for the

whiskey components as they will

really shine through… and do not

ruin it with loads of sugar!

We used the following:

25ml Willett’s Pot Still Reserve

Bourbon

25ml Millstone 100 Dutch Rye

5 dashes Bokers Aromatic Bitters

2 Dashes Regans’ Orange Bitters

7.5ml Sugar Syrup

Orange ribbon with pith

removed to garnish

Combine the Willett’s bourbon

with a small amount of ice straight

out of the freezer into mixing

glass and stir to chill. Add the rest

of the ingredients to the mixing

glass along with more ice and stir

to chill once again. If there’s still

room, add more ice and continue

to stir down.

Once suitably chilled, strain into

a rocks glass full of ice, or better

still, one giant ice ball or cube

if you can get them. Crease the

orange ribbon over the drink to

express its oils onto the drinks

surface.

Rub the outside of the orange

onto the rim of the glass and then

place in the drink. Sit down and

enjoy!

34


F O O D & D R I N K

A taste of autumn

LIAM DILLON, AWARD-WINNING CHEF PATRON AT THE BOAT INN, LICHFIELD,

SHARES A RECIPE WHICH MAKES THE MOST OF AN AUTUMNAL HERO INGREDIENT - VENISON

Liam says: “The main element for this dish is the

venison, a beautiful ingredient that I love to work

with at this time of year. This recipe below is only

for the marinade that we use in the restaurant to add

as much flavour to the meat as possible. It helps to

season the meat due to the ingredients used.

“This method of seasoning meat before cooking is

quite common but mainly for secondary cuts of meat

before stewing, to add flavour and tenderise. This

technique is also used for such dishes as a coq au vin,

where the wine is used to marinade the chicken and

then used back to make the sauce.

“This venison marinade is used in a similar vein to

season the sauce, but is reduced heavily first.”

Venison marinade

Ingredients

15g juniper berries

25g orange peel

2g rosemary

2g thyme

400g sliced onions

15g garlic

10 x black peppercorns

3 x bay leaves

750ml red wine

Place the red wine into a pan and bring to the boil.

Once it is up to the boil pour over the remaining

ingredients.

This marinade should be left to cool before it is used.

The venison loin should be left in the marinade for

one hour and then removed and patted dry. Once this

process has been completed it should be cut to the

desired size and then preserved until it is ready to be

cooked.

We have a number of different components that come

together to create the dish at the restaurant. A potato

terrine that has been built with red cabbage running

through it; pickled mushrooms and roasted baby

onions, kale, yeasted cauliflower puree and venison

sausage. Once this is on the plate with the roasted

saddle of venison we finish the sauce with elderberries

which have been pickled and help lift the sauce with a

slight sharpness which brings the dish together.

36


Join in the Festive Celebrations

The

Boat Inn

Christmas Murder

Mystery Evenings

Tue 4th, Tue 11th, Mon 17th

& Tue 18th December

Family Lunch

with Santa

Sun 2nd, 9th, 16th, Sat 22nd,

Sun 23rd & Mon 24th Dec

Christmas Carols

& Afternoon Tea

Tue 27th Nov, Tue 4th, Tue

11th, Mon17th & Tue 18th Dec

Starlight Christmas

Party Nights

Various dates in November,

December & January

Michelin recommended

Liam Dillon, chef owner of The Boat Inn was

recently awarded “Best Chef” in the Midlands.

Modern British Food with an open kitchen.

Newly refurbished with a view into the kitchen.

Tables suitable for large parties

with set menus to choose from.

Book your christmas party at the boat

Moor Hall Drive, Four Oaks, Sutton Coldfield B75 6LN

0121 308 3751 www.moorhallhotel.co.uk

Join in the Festive Celebrations

Starters

• Locally shot pigeon, courgette & chestnut

• Roasted scallops, squash, toasted seeds

• Celeriac & artichoke veloute

Mains

• Turkey breast, rolled leg, sprout top,

cranberry & parsnip puree

• Beef rump medallions, watercress, shallot & roasted

celeriac(served with hand cut chips & peppercorn sauce)

• Hake, potato, cauliflower stems, sea herbs & fish sauce

• Roast courgette, artichokes & spiced yellow split peas

Sides

• Cauliflower & Westcombe cheese

• Parmesan & truffle chips

• Sprouts & pancetta

• Heritage carrots and Caraway butter

• Pickled red cabbage

Desserts

• Winter eton mess

• Set cream, clementine & granola

• Lemon sponge, honeycomb, bee pollen & yoghurt sorbet

• British cheese selection (£5 supplement)

Festive

Set

Menu

Christmas Wreath

Making Workshops

Monday 26th &

Tuesday 27th November

Santa

Sunday Lunch

Sunday 9th &

Sunday 23rd December

Christmas Carols

& Afternoon Tea

Friday 7th &

Friday 14th December

Christmas Party

Nights

Various dates in November,

December & January

Premium

Festive

Set

Menu

2 courses £25

3 courses £30

Starters

• Dorset crab, charred leeks & toasted bread

• Rock oysters, red wine reduction & lemon

• Scottish mackerel, gooseberry chutney, black olive & runner beans

• Celeriac & artichoke veloute

Mains

• Venison, yeasted cauliflower, mushrooms, red cabbage potato terrine

• Turkey breast, rolled leg, sprout top, cranberry & parsnip puree

• Chalkstem trout, squash gnocchi, salsify, hollandaise & sauce vierge

• Roast courgette, artichokes & spiced yellow split peas

Sides

• Cauliflower & Westcombe cheese

• Parmesan & truffle chips

• Sprouts & pancetta

• Heritage carrots and Caraway butter

• Pickled red cabbage

Desserts

• Carrot cake, almond tuille, butter icing & Christmas pudding ice cream

• Hot chocolate cake, prune & hazelnut granola

• Warm rice pudding, caramel streusel crumb, clementine & chocolate

• British cheese selection (£5 supplement)

2 courses £35

3 courses £40

Please notify us of any allergies as some ingredients are not mentioned in dish title

Bird Street, Lichfield WS13 6PR

01543 414822 www.thegeorgelichfield.co.uk

Call for details • 01543 361692

Open Wednesday • Sunday

Open Tuesday • Sunday during December and now taking Christmas bookings

www.theboatinnlichfield.com • Walsall Road, Lichfield WS14 0BU


F O O D & D R I N K

An autumnal pick

PATRICK GAUNT, OPERATIONS MANAGER FOR SPECIALIST WINE COMPANY

ITAL SARDO, TAKES A LOOK AT THE BEST WINES FOR AUTUMN

With the temperatures dropping, we are looking to provide our clients with a welcoming warmth of wine.

Ital Sardo invites you to share our great selection of wine, pairing perfectly with those crisp autumn evenings.

With plenty of fine wines available, here are our recommendations for the forthcoming month:

Barbera d’Asti

This is a wine that is recognised

by many consumers of Italian

wines. As with many of our more

recognisable wines, we believe that

we have found the best example

of this style. With autumnal notes

of blackberry, a hint of cinnamon

and a slight finish of cracked

black pepper, this is, all in all, a

great wine for a

fantastic price.

This is highly

recommended

by us.

Irilai

This wine is from our most recent

shipment, in which we focused

on our most exclusive range

from Sardinia. The sketch of the

town of Oliena pronounces the

important sense of ‘source’ with

this wine. A great example of a

Sardinian red wine, strong yet

smooth, Irilai has a great sense

of warmth, all

softened with an

even balance of

red cherry and

aromatic herbs.

This is a red

wine that can

be consumed

on its own,

however, does

pair well with

roasts - lamb

in particular.

Le Giare

Understanding that not everyone

is a red wine drinker, we have a

recommendation from our range

of white wines. This is a fantastic

example of how we are providing

our clients with something new.

Sourced from the island of

Sardinia, this young Vermentino

is one of our most versatile wines.

The soft, fruity notes allow this

refreshing white

to be consumed

on its own.

Interestingly,

with the addition

of a unique

savoury finish

of almond

and thyme, the

opportunity to

taste this wine

with cured meats

or a vegetable

ragout should

not be missed.

Our full range of wines are available to view on our website at www.italsardo.com

As a small company, we believe in offering a personal and professional service to all of customers.

Therefore, we welcome any requests and look forward to hearing from you. You can contact us via

email wine@italsardo.com or call our office 01283 711588

38


MONDAY 15 - SATURDAY 20 OCT

POP UP MICHELIN STAR FINE DINING

IN A KITCHEN NEAR YOU!

Delivering exciting and new dining experiences to your doorstep through a series

of pop up kitchen events, where chefs from Michelin starred restaurants and highly

commended chefs showcase their food and talents.

TOM

SHEPHERD

HEAD CHEF,

1 MICHELIN STAR

RESTAURANT ADAMS

15 OCTOBER 18

THE BOAT INN

LICHFIELD

6 COURSES | £85

MATT

CHEAL

CHEF, OWNER OF

CHEALS OF HENLEY

19 NOVEMBER 18

THE WINEHOUSE

LICHFIELD

6 COURSES | £75

@saucesupperclub

@saucesupperclub

www.saucesupperclub.co.uk


F E AT U R E

Into the abyss

IN A NEW SERIES FOR J’AIME, JACK REGAN, A CREATIVE AT TITAN. THE ADVERTISING AGENCY

IN BIRMINGHAM, TAKES A MORE ADRENALINE-FUELLED APPROACH TO LIFE. THIS MONTH,

HE UNDERTAKES A HAIR-RAISING CHARITY ABSEIL IN BIRMINGHAM

JACK REGAN LIVING LIFE

ON THE EDGE - LITERALLY

I am about to die. I’m certain of that and of that

alone.

Probably not from the shattering impact of a 250ft

fall, but almost certainly from catastrophic shame

and humiliation. Be assured, this will not be a hero’s

death. No mournful obits, no flags at half whatsit.

To be fair, this is not how I’d imagined my morning

ending. I’d had the highest of hopes for this, my

very first ever abseil. And from Birmingham’s tallest

building* no less.

In my head I was going to swagger through the entire

experience, doing this stunt with two very glamorous

ladies, raising funds for Emmaus UK, a brilliant

charity that’s helping homeless people - so, y’know,

carpe diem etc.

I’d had the most devilish self image too - Man From

Milk Tray cool with slick hair, polo neck, incredibly

tight jeans and an insatiable mistress in every port.

I’d envisioned myself majestic, all in black, whizzing

down the wall in the style of elite troops storming

embassies, y’know, chomping a cigar, wolfish grin - I

was, quite literally, gonna go commando.

And it had all seemed so positive and realistic in

those great moments going up to the roof too. So

awash with hope and possibilities. But then reality set

in like a thunderclap from the gods.

Twenty one storeys up atop the Snow Hill Holiday

Inn I decided I’d take a nonchalant peek over the

side. A wretched mistake, I’ll admit. For the instant I

did so the blood drained from my face like a flushing

toilet. Heart hammering in my chest.

I stood there, ashen faced, terrified, gargling

incoherently, shaking, my nerve totally gone. This

was... I just had no contingency for terror.

So, desperately trying to regain my cool, I asked the

climbing expert guy how far up we were. He nodded,

“Don’t worry about landing with a splat, son, it’s

so bloody far to the bottom you’ll die of starvation

first!”

Which did not help.

40


Then he started with the strapping and ropes and

harnesses and trussing me up and pinning in my

unmentionables and pinching and teasing and...

good God! The Marquess de Sade himself would’ve

been blushing like a wee schoolgirl with all this

bondage and self inflicted agony!

But much worse was to come.

After a few instructions the climbing dude had me

and my glamour girl mate, Donna, clamber clumsily

onto the ledge high above Birmingham and I’m on

the verge of vomiting with fear. Then he tells us to

simultaneously push ourselves off...

Which is when I had an epiphany. A soft voice inside

me said, Don’t worry, mate, it’ll be fine. Just push off,

hard as you can.

Which somehow settled me down. I immediately felt

exquisitely calm. Serene. I decided, what the hell,

dude, just do it. Just do it for the homeless! And so I

did.

I thrust myself off that roof with proper abandon,

pushing my backside mightily into the air with a

force few men could ever muster... and... and I

immediately rrrripped the arse of my jeans wide

open to the world!

I mean this was a freakish tear. The entire

garment split in half. The Full Monty of rips. Two

hundred feet up, suspended by a daft rope and I’m

experiencing a unique new level of

mortifying full exposure.

Now, let me take you back a few

paragraphs to what must’ve seemed

like a throwaway line. The bit where I

said I was gonna go commando. Okay,

so I wasn’t actually joking, you see. I

genuinely had gone full commando and

was now going full frontal. And full rear

admiral too.

On the plus side, I wasn’t so ashen faced

now.

Of course you panic. Who wouldn’t?

My glam mate Donna’s shouting over,

asking about a tearing noise? I mutter

incoherently, my mind racing - how to

hell to now stay ahead of her descent so

she can’t see my shortcomings?

Panic and shame utterly broil inside me

as Donna is clearly about to overtake me

- a disaster from which few friendships

could recover.

So I try to abseil faster, my feet on the

hotel’s windows, but I know if I make

big strides down that “everything” will

fall out of what’s left of my jeans and I

cannot adjust “anything” because I’m

175 feet up, gripping this bloody rope for

grim death!

So I do the best I can and keep my feet very close

together and start, quite literally, mincing my way

down a building, my face utterly aflame with shame.

Now, to be clear, this isn’t a situation where, were

you look closely you could see what’s going on. This

is a man on obvious display to the world. And a

manhood.

A fact verified by the dozen overjoyed builders up on

the scaffolds of the 3 Snow Hill construction tower

immediately across the street. The builders, bless

‘em, offered their raucous “encouragement” to me

all the way down.

Don’t even ask me about the double deckers on the

street below. Don’t ask!

What followed were three agonising minutes of

breathtaking humiliation and shame. But, despite it

all, I managed to stay those few crucial yards ahead

of Donna and reached the bottom first, furiously tore

off my constraints before scampering desperately to

the sanctuary of a nearby portaloo.

Where I’m still sat now, sweating, stammering and

waiting till my mum arrives to rescue me with a fresh

pair of trousers.

*Yes, yes, we know there’s a taller building in

Birmingham now but, before you write in, think

about how cool that’ll make you feel about yourself.

Please.

THE ABSEIL WAS TO

RAISE FUNDS FOR

BIRMINGHAM-BASED

HOMELESS CHARITY

EMMAUS UK

41


T R AV E L

Spain’s hidden year-round

mountain gems

RB COLLECTION DIRECTOR OLIVER EXPLAINS WHY WE SHOULD TAKE A SERIOUS LOOK

AT SPAIN’S SUMMER AND WINTER MOUNTAIN HOLIDAY OFFERINGS

EXPERIENCE SOME OF

EUROPE’S FINEST SKIING

IN BAQUEIRA BERET

The mountain ranges of Switzerland, Austria, Italy

and France are some of Europe’s most popular

to explore during the summer months, with

breathtaking scenery, easy driving routes, plenty of

alpine activities for all ages and good quality cuisine

and culture to take in. There is, however, a European

country that isn’t quite as synonymous with winter

ski and summer lake and mountain holidays, and

one which is one of the easiest to get to from many

airports in the UK.

Spain has always been the Brits’ favourite destination

for a summer beach holiday and has been since the

OLIVER, LEFT, AND HIS

BROTHER JAMES HIT

THE SLOPES

1950s. But it is also home to ski resorts described by

the experts as the true ‘hidden gems’, frequented by

Spanish royalty and featuring an abundance of runs

with very few queues and excellent quality facilities.

In the summer months, driving to Spain’s Pyrenees

is a dream; the country’s road network is vast and,

unlike the UK, as soon as you leave a major city the

numbers of cars competing for space on the road

dramatically drops.

I’ve had holidays in the two regions in both winter

and summer and can’t sing their praises high enough.

Here’s my brief guide and hopefully it will inspire

you to go too.

Skiing in Spain

There are a number of good quality resorts; my

favourite are Formigal and Baqueira Beret. I took a

week to experience both resorts and, having skied all

my life around Europe and North America, I was a

little dubious to be honest. Luckily, I was pleasantly

surprised.

Our first stop was Formigal, an easy four-hour drive

from Barcelona, and a beautiful one at that. Unlike

some of the other European ski resorts, the lack of

non-Spanish tourists means there are far less people

driving to the resorts, and these two are a little

42


further away from the main cities meaning a

day trip is more challenging.

Formigal has a vast number of runs and

we never queued once. A fresh snow storm

arrived on day two, which added further

challenges to some of the already difficult

black runs; but this also made for a really

adventurous skiing experience. Rarely, during

peak skiing months in Europe can you be the

only two enjoying a run in the midday sun!

While my brother would push me to try some

of the harder runs, I should mention that

Formigal has a great selection of lower level

runs for families and beginners. With less

people there, the kids seemed to be getting

more of a personal learning experience too.

Après-ski isn’t at its strongest in Formigal,

but there were a few good quality local

restaurants which offered an enjoyable

selection of Spanish/French fusion mountain

cooking. I would recommend two to three

days as we did and then move on to your next stop;

for us this was the royalty-ready Baqueira Beret.

The drive from Formigal took around three-and-ahalf

hours as we travelled as close as you can drive

parallel along the mountain range. Again, the lack

of fellow drivers made it a pleasurable journey as we

snaked between the peaks along the modern roads.

Beret is very well known in Spain as their best ski

resort, and many ski journalists class it as the best

in Europe. There is a certain quality in the air

and, while it doesn’t have a traditional main street

or commercial centre as you find in the North

American resorts, it does offer some of the most

THE PICTURESQUE

MONT-REBEI GORGE

MONT-REBEI GORGE

MAKES FOR A SCENIC

HIKE

expensive and exclusive accommodations. But where

Beret excels is with what is the most important thing

for any ski holiday - extremely high quality ski runs

for all levels, and excellent swift lifts where, just like

Formigal, very little time is spent queuing.

My brother often insists we ski pretty much every

run in every resort we visit, and this was certainly

a major challenge here as there were so many. The

challenging by far are on the Tuc deth Dossau, the

resort’s highest peak. On our last day we enjoyed a

well-deserved drink just in time to be the last to ski

down. There is always something special about being

one of the last down a run in the afternoon, having it

all to oneself is a real treat!

Cuisine is the major highlight of the aprèsski

scene here. You won’t find any nightclubs

here, but you will find fine dining and I can

definitely recommend Ticolet as the spot to

catch a special meal - but do book ahead!

While there are other Spanish ski resorts,

Formigal and Baqueira Beret are the two

which I would head for first and I am sure

you won’t be disappointed.

Lakes and mountains in Spain

In the same mountain range, and again

driving from Barcelona we headed towards

the Parador Biesla, a unique historic hotel

perched high in the Pyrenees, just over Mt

Pertido from France. The journey was a

great experience in itself. We soon left the

motorway behind and stopped at The Mont

Rebei Gorge for lunch and a small hike.

These were scenes you would expect only to

43


see when visiting the Great Lakes in North America.

The bold green-blue of the water perfectly mirrored

the rocky surrounding, engulfed by silence as we

turned off the engine. Very few foreign visitors know

about this unique spot in Spain and I must urge you

to try it out, especially as it is only a couple of hours’

drive from Barcelona. To experience the full six-hour

round trip hike you need to stop over nearby. Or

there is a shorter three-and-a-half hour round trip

but it is not for the faint hearted. with sheer drops

along the way. Alternatively, you can board the boat

or self-canoe for a more serene experience. The

scenery was breathtaking.

We continued on our journey along the locally

famous N230 road, winding through the hills past

small villages, more lakes and flat plains - a landscape

for each season. Soon we turned off this scenic route

and headed up into the mountains, through villages

specialising in adventure pursuits such as mountain

biking, hiking and climbing. We eventually arrived

at Parador Biesla, located as the final stop of the

road and surrounded by towering rocky peaks with

natural waterfalls bursting through, roaring in the

background. While we were staying for just one night

before our onward journey down into France and

onto the Basque Country, we could easily see why

our fellow visitors were booked in for a few nights.

The remoteness, peace and quiet and opportunities

for exploration were soon apparent.

The journey time direct from Barcelona to Biesla

would be just around four hours. My top tip for this

journey would be to hire a decent size automatic

SUV; it gives you extra height to see the scenery and

also allows the driver to relax a little more and take it

all in.

To plan and book your holiday to the Spanish

Pyrenees, call RB Collection on 01543 258631

or email vip@rbcollection.com

J’aime

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44


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LO CA L A R E A

What’s On Local

YOUR GUIDE TO THE BEST OF WHAT’S ON IN AND AROUND

SUTTON COLDFIELD, LICHFIELD, WALSALL AND BEYOND

WHAT: The All

New Scummy

Mummies Show

WHERE:

Sutton Coldfield

Town Hall

WHEN:

October 10

Following their sell-out UK tour, the Scummy

Mummies are back with a brand new comedy show.

New songs! New sketches! New catsuits! And even

some new jokes!

Join Ellie and Helen as they celebrate the scummier

side of parenting, from drinking wine at teatime to

hiding from the PTA. Bring your friends and make it a

Mums’ (or Dads’!) night out! Based on the hit Scummy

Mummies podcast and best-selling book, as heard on

Radio 4 and featured by The Guardian, The Sunday

Times and The Telegraph, this hilariously funny show

captures the scummier side of parenting. For more

details call the box office on 0121 296 9543 or visit

www.townhallsuttoncoldfield.co.uk

WHAT: Screamfest

WHERE: National

Forest Adventure Farm

WHEN: Selected dates

from October 11 to

November 3

Prepare to be scared this Halloween season as Screamfest is

back and more terrifying than ever, with five thrilling scare

attractions to chill your bones. New for 2018 is Insomnia.

Be prepared to enter a child’s nightmare - what if she could

drag you into it? What if you could not wake up?

In Love Hurts Professor Heart wants you to find your

soulmate at one of his famous speed dating nights. Just

pray you’re not one of the rejected… Roll up, roll up and

enter Freakout, full of crazy clown antics, frightful freaks

and terrorising terrors. For a truly terrifying experience in

the pitch black, are you brave enough to step through the

portal and risk your soul in the realm of Demonica?

And finally find Dia de los Muertos in the maize maze. Will

you escape the maze without suffering a terrible fate?

Between scare attractions, enjoy the live entertainment

including extreme performers, live DJ, zombie paintball

and street theatre.But don’t enjoy yourself too much; you

never know what’s around the next corner. For more details

visit www.screamfest.co.uk.

WHAT: The Case of the Frightened Lady

WHERE: Lichfield Garrick

WHEN: October 15 to 20

When Inspector Tanner is called in to investigate

a ruthless murder at Mark’s Priory, the grand

ancestral home of the Lebanon family, he quickly

discovers that nothing is quite as it seems. The

household is controlled by the family physician,

the footmen behave more like guests than servants

and the secretary Isla is afraid for her life. As

Tanner moves closer to the heart of the mystery

he uncovers a shocking and closely guarded

secret…

The Classic Thriller Company returns with a

brand new adaption from the legendary ‘King of

the detective thriller’ Edgar Wallace. Adapted for

film several times, this is your chance to catch this

chilling, captivating and complex thriller live on

stage. For more details call the box office on 01543

412121 or visit www.lichfieldgarrick.com

46


Ben Jeffery Exhibition on Saturday 20th October

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WHAT: Ben Jeffery

WHERE: Bluebird Fine Art Gallery, Mercia Marina

WHEN: October 20

Art lovers will get the chance to meet acclaimed artist

Ben Jeffrey at an open event at Bluebird Fine Art Gallery

this month, one of a series of ‘meet the artist’ events

running throughout the year. The event accompanies an

exhibition of Ben’s work.

Ben’s portfolio is fairly diverse, ranging from portraits to

landscapes in both pencil and oils. He loves working with

vivid, bright colours to create a unique and modern style.

Ben is a huge sci-fi movie fan and loves special effects,

elements of which can be seen throughout his work. He

also takes a lot of inspiration from concept artwork.

Bluebird is an independent gallery selecting artwork from

local and internationally acclaimed artists; they have a

vast portfolio of artists available to them and are working

with some of the country’s leading publishers.

The gallery opened its doors at the end of March based

in the new landmark Piazza building at Mercia Marina,

Willington. Taking one of the largest units with 1,248

square feet the gallery offers a range of fine art including

original oils, limited editions and sculpture covering all

genres from landscape painting, figurative, cityscapes to

quirky pieces.

Bluebird Fine Art is run by Maxine Pincher. Maxine has

more than eight years’ experience running an art gallery

and was previously involved in interior design, planning

kitchens and bathrooms and working for Laura Ashley.

She says: “I love

buying the art for

the gallery and

I love the selling

part too; seeing

the joy on people’s

faces. It can be a

real investment for

some people and

buying a piece

of art is a very

individual choice.

“As we are an

independent

gallery we have

an extensive

portfolio and we

have prices to suit

all denominations

and a range of

genres including landscapes, portraits, figurative, abstract

and cityscapes with the mediums ranging from original

oil painting to signed limited editions. We also have a

fabulous selection of sculptures.”

Artists which Maxine showcases include Ronnie Wood,

Peter Smith, Alex Echo, Caroline Shotton, Sarah

Graham, Paul Kenton, JJ Adams, Craig Davison,

Hamish Blakely, Jeff Rowland and Richard Rowan.

The gallery is open six days a week and welcomes

everyone to come along and enjoy browsing the gallery

in a relaxed atmosphere. For more details visit

www.bluebirdfineart.co.uk

48


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LO CA L A R E A

What’s on Second City

A LOOK AT SOME OF THE BIGGEST AND BEST

EVENTS TO COME TO BIRMINGHAM THIS MONTH

WHAT: Cirque du

Soleil presents OVO

WHERE:

Arena Birmingham

WHEN:

October 3 to 7

Cirque du Soleil’s brand new UK arena tour, OVO, is a

celebration of nature and co-existence which makes for a

fun-filled production for the whole family.

OVO, meaning ‘egg’ in Portuguese, is a headlong rush into

a colourful ecosystem teeming with life, where insects work,

eat, crawl, flutter, play, fight and look for love in a non-stop

riot of energy and movement.

When a mysterious egg appears in their midst, the insects

are awestruck and intensely curious about this iconic object

that represents the enigma and cycles of their lives. It is

love at first sight when a gawky, quirky insect arrives in this

bustling community and a fabulous ladybug catches his eye

– and the feeling is mutual.

Having thrilled more than five million people worldwide

since the show premiered in Montreal in 2009 as a Big

Top show, OVO embarks on a journey, offering the same

captivating production as the Big Top performances, but

on a larger scale. For more details visit

www.arenabham.co.uk

WHAT: War Horse

WHERE: Birmingham

Hippodrome

WHEN: October 10

to November 3

Following eight recordbreaking

years in

London’s West End and having played in 11 countries

around the world to over seven million people, the

National Theatre’s acclaimed play War Horse returns to

Birmingham Hippodrome this month.

At the outbreak of World War One, Joey, young Albert’s

beloved horse, is sold to the Cavalry and shipped to France.

He’s soon caught up in enemy fire, and fate takes him on an

extraordinary journey, serving on both sides before finding

himself alone in no man’s land. Albert, who remained

on his parents’ Devon farm, cannot forget Joey. Though

still not old enough to enlist he embarks on a treacherous

mission to find him and bring him home.

Based on the beloved novel by Michael Morpurgo, War

Horse is an unforgettable theatrical event which takes

audiences on an extraordinary journey from the fields of

rural Devon to the trenches of First World War France. For

more details visit www.birminghamhippodrome.com

WHAT: Sarah Millican - Control Enthusiast

WHERE: Birmingham Symphony Hall

WHEN: October 24 to 26

Sarah Millican is not a control freak, she's a

control enthusiast. She even controls her own

insults, see? Do you arrange the nights out?

Are you in charge of passports on holiday?

Then so are you!

Whether you’re sorting the tickets for this show

or turning up when you’re told to, welcome.

You’ll learn about Rescue Men, farting in

hospital pants, what can happen at a bra

fitting, the benefits of casserole, plus tips on

how to talk to shop assistants and the correct

way to eat a biscuit.

Funny, frank and unapologetically filthy, this

is Sarah Millican at her riotous best. For more

details visit www.thsh.co.uk

50


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LO CA L A R E A

Game for a laugh

BIRMINGHAM IMPROV FESTIVAL RETURNS TO THE SECOND CITY THIS MONTH WITH

A STELLAR LINE-UP OF COMEDY EVENTS - AND YOU COULD WIN A PAIR OF TICKETS TO

ONE OF THE MOST SOUGHT-AFTER SHOWS

Tickets are now on sale for all performances at this

year’s Birmingham Improv Festival which returns

to the city for nine days offering the very best in

improvisation from Friday October 26 to Saturday

November 3.

Now firmly on the festival map and included in this

year’s ‘Best UK Comedy Festivals Worth Booking

a Holiday For!’ on Tripadvisor, 2018 sees a range

of performers visit the city from across the UK and

internationally including New York, Edinburgh,

London, Bristol, Ireland, Nottingham and many

home-grown troupes from Birmingham – now seen

as a seedbed for improv talent.

Over the nine days audiences can expect a variety

of themes and an abundance of made-up popular,

hilarious, energetic and breaking-the-boundary

performances featuring Star Wars, Shakespeare, Enid

Blyton adventures, hip hop, Halloween spookiness,

soap opera, musicals and more.

Improvisation just wouldn’t exist without input from

the audience. Each night audiences will be invited

to throw out suggestions and themes to performers

which will guide how the night will go – expect

the unexpected, lots of laughs and a slight bit of

madness!

The festival, which celebrates its third year in the city,

has proved a real hit with Birmingham audiences

growing year on year. As well as the popular Blue

Orange Theatre, who will be hosting the majority

of performances, the festival is excited to welcome

on board Birmingham Repertory Theatre as a new

venue partner for 2018.

For full listings and to book tickets go to

www.birminghamimprovfestival.com

The competition

To celebrate Birmingham REP coming on board for 2018 we have two tickets to giveaway to the Olivier

Award winning Showstopper! The Improvised Musical. Spontaneous musical comedy at its absolute finest

- direct from the West End and now heading to The REP. With ten years as an Edinburgh Fringe mustsee

phenomenon, a BBC Radio 4 series, a critically acclaimed West End run and an Olivier Award to their

name, The Showstoppers have delighted audiences across the globe with their ingenious blend of comedy,

musical theatre and spontaneity. A brand-new musical comedy is created from scratch at each performance

of this award-winning show which returns to Birmingham following a sell-out at the festival last year. Tickets

are valid for the show on Saturday, November 3 at 7.45pm at the Birmingham REP Studio.

To be in with a chance of winning, simply answer the following question:

For how many years has Birmingham Improv Festival been running?

Send your answer, along with with your name, email address and postcode by email to

competitions@jaimemagazine.com with Birmingham Improv Festival competition as the email subject.

Entries must be received by 5pm on Wednesday, October 24, and our winner will be notified by

Friday, October 26. Terms and conditions apply. Visit www.jaimemagazine.com for further details.

52


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FA S H I O N

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AUTUMN’S HOTTEST TRENDS TAKES A BLAST FROM THE PAST, AS THE SEVENTIES

PROVIDE INSPIRATION FOR YOUR NEW SEASON WARDROBE, SAYS AMY NORBURY

THE fashion time machine is in full force for

AW18, and the decade most designers plundered

this season? It was without doubt the Seventies,

specifically the collars, coats and colours.

Collars were long and sharp at Louis Vuitton and

Chloé. Coats were big and fluffy (Vuitton again)

or suede at Tory Burch and Coach, and the

Seventies penchant for shearling and crochet was

seen at designers all over the catwalks. A shearling

aviator jacket, as seen at Chloé, is a super-luxe

buy which will see you through the season and

beyond.

Fabrics play a key role in bringing the decade

back to life and are an easy way to inject a

little 1970s swing into your wardrobe. Rich,

luxuriously soft velvets and corduroys come into

their own, particularly for the trouser shape of

the season - the kick flare. The silhouette most

synonymous with the decade, the flare is quickly

overtaking the drainpipe skinny as the style of

choice. Cropped or to the ground, the mantra is

the bigger, the better.

There were some more literal takes on Seventies

fashion on the AW18 runways, but the way it

will affect your personal style is via colour. Hues

of beige, mustard, chestnut were everywhere,

particularly the cosy layers at Roksanda and Miu

Miu, but it is brown in a full spectrum of shades

which has proved to be the colour du jour.

From Fendi's beige-and-chocolate monogrammed

clothes and accessories through to Chloé's entire

ode to every possible shade in this spectrum -

often all worn within one look - it’s fair to say that

brown is definitely the new black.

If you want to add a little sex appeal to those

sepia tones, don’t fret; those chestnut Chloé

dresses, for instance, all come slashed to the waist.

Look out for slashed necklines, raised hemlines

and seriously sheer shirts to prove that chestnut,

chocolate, tan and taupe are there to fawn over.

CHECK COAT, £110,

AND TINTED SHADES,

£14, RIVER ISLAND

54


TEDDY COAT, PRINCIPLES

AT DEBENHAMS

£795

OCHRE JACQUARD BLOUSE,

DOROTHY PERKINS

£28

£89

M&S COLLECTION JUMPER,

MARKS AND SPENCER

JONATHAN SIMKHAI

BURNT ORANGE SATIN

MIDI DRESS,

HARVEY NICHOLS

FAITH BOOTS,

DEBENHAMS

£1,280

£39.50

FAYE MEDIUM LEATHER

SHOULDER BAG, CHLOÉ

AT HARVEY NICHOLS

£120

VELVET JUMPSUIT,

£70, OASIS.

M&S COLLECTION

DRESS, £55,

MARKS AND

SPENCER

CHUNKY YELLOW KNIT, £26, CHECK

TROUSERS, £28, AND TEDDY BIKER

JACKET, £55, DOROTHY PERKINS


FA S H I O N

Fall in love with fashion

JILL HARTLEY, CO-FOUNDER AND DIRECTOR OF NERO E BIANCO EXCLUSIVE FASHION AND BRIDAL

BOUTIQUE AT BARTON MARINA, TAKES A LOOK AT SOME OF THIS SEASON’S HOTTEST TRENDS

Summer sunshine has been amazing this year and

while we’re sad to see the end of it, we are are getting

rather excited about the fabulous trends coming

through for cooler autumn days. As always, at Nero

e Bianco our mission is to help women look amazing

and feel empowered. So, looking at autumn colours

and trends that are crucial to that end. Here’s a

selection of styles and colours that will put you in the

lead for on trend style in the coming months.

Cut the mustard

Mustard tones are perfect for the autumn and fine

knits are versatile to wear casual over skirts, trousers

and are the best transitional pieces. We’ve added

detachable faux fur cuffs to add a little drama. The

tulle skirt is one of our favourites, and this season we

have added the embroidery with the autumn colours

which we love. The ankle boot gives the look and

edge, sassy and sophisticated comes together.

Black magic

Continuing with the mustard colour trend, this

delicately embroidered top is an amazing piece to

bring a simple black outfit up to date. The top can be

worn elegantly with a black cami and black trousers;

alternatively pop the top over a sleeveless plain black

or mustard dress to completely change the look. This

wouldn’t be out of place at any evening function.

56


www.neroebianco.co.uk

Nero e Bianco Exclusive Fashion & Bridal

Barton Marina Burton upon Trent DE13 8AS

01283 346704


Classic twist

Camel coats will never go out of style, and we have

brought a twist to that with this totally gorgeous

trench. Simple but so effective, it will take you from

day to night with ease. Here we have teamed with a

stunning pencil skirt and top with a cheeky spot tulle

trim - feminine with a sense of empowerment!

Silver linings

Metallics are a firm favourite on the catwalk this

season. All the designers are working with metallic

in some form, with silver being the top choice. So we

have a fun silver metallic jacket that steps into this

trend but remains elegant and charming. The jacket

is the key piece here so no fuss is the way to wear it

well. The ankle boots add another dimension and

bring the outfit together - a totally modern look.

58


アパート

夀 䔀 䄀 刀 匀 伀 䘀

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匀 瀀 攀 挀 椀 愀 氀 椀 猀 琀 猀 椀 渀 搀 攀 猀 椀 最 渀 椀 渀 最 愀 渀 搀 洀 愀 欀 椀 渀 最 Ⰰ

爀 攀 洀 漀 搀 攀 氀 氀 椀 渀 最 愀 渀 搀 爀 攀 昀 甀 爀 戀 椀 猀 栀 椀 渀 最 昀 漀 爀 アパート 礀 攀 愀 爀 猀

䄀 䰀 䰀 䔀 一 䈀 刀 伀 圀 一 䨀 䔀 圀 䔀 䰀 䰀 䔀 刀 夀

䠀 攀 愀 爀 琀 漀 昀 吀 栀 攀 䌀 漀 甀 渀 琀 爀 礀 匀 栀 漀 瀀 瀀 椀 渀 最 嘀 椀 氀 氀 愀 最 攀

匀 眀 椀 渀 昀 攀 渀 Ⰰ 䰀 椀 挀 栀 ǻ 攀 氀 搀 Ⰰ

匀 琀 愀 昀 昀 漀 爀 搀 猀 栀 椀 爀 攀 圀 匀 㐀 㤀 儀 刀

㔀 㐀 アパート 㐀 㠀 㤀 㐀 㠀

眀 眀 眀 ⸀ 愀 氀 氀 攀 渀 戀 爀 漀 眀 渀 樀 攀 眀 攀 氀 氀 攀 爀 礀 ⸀ 挀 漀 ⸀ 甀 欀

昀 椀 琀

sophisticated

URBAN SALONS

£10 OFF

A CUT AND FINISH

FOR NEW CLIENTS

sophisticated

Lewis Moore Salons

URBAN SALONS

Sutton Coldfield

4 Coleshill Street

Sutton Coldfield

Birmingham B72 1SD

Phone: 0121 354 7907

HALF PRICE

Lewis Moore Salons

Streetly

41 Boundary Road

Hundred Acre Estate

Streetly

West Midlands B74 2JR

Phone: 0121 353 2875

COLOUR

T H R O U G H O U T

JANUARY 2018

WITH EVERY FULL PRICE CUT AND FINISH*

www.lewismooresalons.co.uk

Midlands Hairdresser

of the Year

WINNER 2010

FINALIST 2014

Lewi

Lewis Moor

Sutton Cold

5 Coleshill St

Sutton Coldf

Birmingham B

Phone: 0121

Lewis Moor

Streetly

41 Boundary

Hundred Acr

Streetly

West Midlan

Phone: 0121

www.lewism

*Terms and conditions *Terms and apply. conditions A skin allergy apply. test will be required 48 hours prior

A skin allergy test will be required 48 hours prior to any colour service.


CO M P E T I T I O N

Good hair days

LEWIS MOORE SALONS ARE CELEBRATING SUCCESS AT A NATIONAL LEVEL - AND ONE LUCKY

READER WILL WIN A HAIR MAKEOVER BY THE TALENTED TEAM WORTH UP TO £150

LEWIS Moore Salons is a group which

has, for the last five years, shown that

growth within independent businesses

is still very much possible in the 21st

century. From providing excellent

customer service and beautiful hair

within salon, to gracing the stage with

quirky, artistic creation, and even

receiving intentional recognition for

what they do, it is safe to say that this

team has had its hands full.

Lewis Moore first started his business

with his oldest salon in Sutton Coldfield

with the premise of presenting quality

and beautiful hair to the public. Due to

this success he has since branched out to

the local area of Streetly and Cannock,

with the same strong ideas that good

hair matters. As well as working within

salon, Lewis has been fortunate enough

to be taken around the world with his

craft, teaching others and presenting

his knowledge and representing

British hairdressing. He has also been

the prestigious winner of Midlands

Hairdresser of the Year, as well as

finalising multiple times.

However, it is not just Lewis that carries

achievement within the team. Within

the last five years the Lewis Moore team

has had regional finalists, and indeed

two UK finalists, within the Wella Trend Vision

hair competition, presented multiple times for the

fellowship of British hairdressing and finalised for

multiple competitions across the hairdressing industry.

Lewis says: “Here at Lewis Moore Salons we strive

constantly to achieve the highest in the hairdressing

world, whether it be on the shop floor, on the stage or

even in the industry’s most competitive competitions.

“This year has been quite the celebration as we praise

one of our best team players, Phillip Underhill. He

has surpassed both ours and his wildest dreams in

becoming a UK finalist in the Wella Trend Vision

hair competition. Not only has he been whittled down

to the Midlands final five, he is now competing to be

the country’s best, with the help and support with all

PHILLIP UNDERHILL,

SALON DIRECTOR OF

LEWIS MOORE STREETLY,

HAS BEEN NAMED A UK

FINALIST AT THE WELLA

TREND VISION HAIR

COMPETITION

of us from the Lewis Moore team.”

Phil joined the group 12 months ago as a senior stylist

and from there he has bloomed. He has since moved

to and is running the Lewis Moore Streetly salon

as salon director, as well as all of his achievements

outside of the group. From his amazing achievement

in Wella Trend Vision, to being a finalist in the Wella

Cult Team, his skills know no bounds. Even with

more than 10 years’ experience in the industry, he

is constantly working on his art to gain 100 per cent

confidence in his clients and with his team mates with

whatever endeavour he so chooses.

For more details or to book an appointment call

Lewis Moore Sutton Coldfield on 0121 354 7907,

Lewis Moore Streetly on 0121 353 2875 or visit

www.lewismooresalons.co.uk

60


The competition

J’AIME HAS TEAMED UP WITH LEWIS MOORE SALONS TO OFFER READERS THE CHANCE

TO WIN A HAIR MAKEOVER WORTH UP TO £150. OUR LUCKY WINNER WILL RECEIVE A

STYLISH NEW CUT AND COLOUR, COURTESY OF THE TALENTED LEWIS MOORE TEAM.

FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN, SIMPLY ANSWER THE FOLLOWING QUESTION:

WHICH LEWIS MOORE TEAM MEMBER HAS BEEN NAMED A UK FINALIST IN THE

WELLA TREND VISION HAIR COMPETITION?

SEND YOUR ANSWER, ALONG WITH WITH YOUR NAME, EMAIL ADDRESS AND POSTCODE

BY EMAIL TO COMPETITIONS@JAIMEMAGAZINE.COM WITH LEWIS MOORE SALONS

COMPETITION AS THE EMAIL SUBJECT. ENTRIES MUST BE RECEIVED BY 5PM ON FRIDAY,

OCTOBER 26, AND OUR WINNER WILL BE NOTIFIED BY WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 31. TERMS

AND CONDITIONS APPLY. VISIT WWW.JAIMEMAGAZINE.COM FOR FURTHER DETAILS.

61


B E AU T Y

Crowning glory

GIVE YOUR BARNET SOME MUCH NEEDED TLC WITH OUR FAVOURITE HAIR-CARE ESSENTIALS FROM

HARVEY NICHOLS BIRMINGHAM. FROM INTENSIVE TREATMENTS TO THE BEST DAILY-USE FORMULAS,

LISA PIDDINGTON REVEALS THE MUST-HAVES THAT WILL OUTSHINE THE COMPETITION

With its nutrient-rich blend of

oceanic plant proteins, GHD

Advanced Split End Therapy

(£20) helps replenish, restore and

protect overworked hair, bringing

damaged ends back to life. It is

activated by the heat of your styler,

smoothing and replenishing for soft,

sleek ends that shine.

For when your locks need

some loving, R+Co’s

Skyline Dry Shampoo

Powder (£32) is exactly

what you need to get that

fresh, elevated feeling.

It dramatically refreshes

second-day or postworkout

hair in an

instant.

OUAI’s Rose Hair & Body Oil

(£26) is a smoothing hair oil and

hydrating moisturiser for top-to-toe

gloss. A fusion of absinthium, Shea

and rosehip oils work to nourish

and protect strands, lock in moisture

and give a radiant glow. The perfect

multi-tasker for girls on the go.

SHOW Beauty's

rejuvenating Pure

Treatment Elixir (£51)

restores lustre and shine,

leaving your hair strengthened

and nourished. Dubbed “liquid

gold” by beauty experts, argan

oil penetrates the cuticle to

strengthen and

enhance elasticity

of. And the bottle

is worthy of any

bathroom cabinet.

Cloud Nine's

Magical

Quick Dry

Portion

(£19) helps to

tame unmanageable locks

for easier styling while

strengthening weak ends.

This little miracle reduces

drying time by up to 50%,

as well as providing heat

protection, a weightless

leave-in conditioner and a

UV filter.

Packed full of nourishing ingredients, Coco and Eve’s Like A

Virgin Nourishing Coconut & Fig Hair Masque (£34.50)

promises to strengthen, repair, tame, treat and condition. An

Instagram favourite, it contains raw virgin coconut to prevent

breakage while argan oil treats split ends and tames frizz.

HAIR-CARE PRODUCTS FEATURED ARE AVAILABLE FROM THE BEAUTY HALL

AT HARVEY NICHOLS BIRMINGHAM OR ONLINE AT HARVEYNICHOLS.COM.

62


CO M P E T I T I O N

A tranquil hideaway

THE HART SPA IS A HIDDEN COUNTRYSIDE RETREAT WHERE YOU CAN EXPERIENCE THE ULTIMATE IN

HOLISTIC RELAXATION - AND YOU COULD WIN A BESPOKE PAMPER PACKAGE WORTH UP TO £150

Nestled amongst the plants and flowers, the Hart Spa is a

holistic retreat based within the Coppice Garden Centre

at Middleton. It’s a perfect location for a spa dedicated

to natural wellness and wellbeing inspired by the best of

nature combined with the results delivered by technology.

J’AIME has teamed up with the Hart Spa to offer

readers the chance to win an exclusive pamper package

worth up to £150. The holistic experience will combine

a full body treatment and facial with scalp massage, all

carried out using bespoke products and tailored to the

winner’s exact requirements.

Founded by Monique Hart, the log cabin dry spa has

been thoughtfully designed with light and spacious

treatment rooms and coloured mood lighting, or

chromotherapy, for a totally personalised experience.

Chromotherapy is both incredibly calming and has

amazing health benefits.

The spa facilities include two treatment rooms, one of

which is a magnificent double treatment room with a

large wet room, two pedicure thrones with garden views

and two manicure stations, as well as a boutique hair

studio.

The Hart Spa instils a sense of calm, wellbeing and

serenity. The spa’s own signature candles are lit

throughout the spa, hair studio and treatment rooms

with a delicate and beautiful aroma, along with a regular

spritz of the bespoke Bleeding Heart mist.

Exclusive treatment experiences are carried out using

the Hart Spa’s very own range of products. Created by

owner Monique Hart using the very best ingredients,

the spa’s products are certified organic. The signature

products contain the hero ingredients of Bleeding Heart

essence and hyaluronic acid blended with essential

oils of lavender, rose, cedarwood and geranium, while

new additions to the products include the uplifting and

energising Joie de Vivre range and the therapeutic and

serene Bonne Nuit. The products and scents used are

personalised for each client to reflect their mood and

aims of treatment, whether that is to be relaxed or

energised.

Holistic treatments such as Chinese fire cupping, hopi

ear candles and lava shell massage are offered alongside

results-driven technical facials using microdermabrasion

and derma rollers, as well as essential maintenance

treatments including waxing, St Tropez tanning,

threading, lashes, brows and bespoke manicures and

pedicures and, of course, hairdressing.

If you’re not lucky enough to be our winner, you can

take advantage of a special offer for all J’AIME readers

and receive a fantastic 50 per cent off your first treatment

at The Hart Spa. Dates and treatments are subject to

availability and terms and conditions apply.

For more details visit www.thehartspa.com or call

0121 308 6052 to book your treatment.

The competition

J’AIME HAS TEAMED UP WITH THE HART SPA

TO OFFER READERS THE CHANCE TO WIN A

BESPOKE PAMPER PACKAGE WORTH UP TO £150.

OUR LUCKY WINNER WILL EXPERIENCE A FULL

BODY TREATMENT AND A RELAXING FACIAL WITH

SCALP MASSAGE USING BESPOKE PRODUCTS.

THE PACKAGE WILL BE TAILORED TO SUIT THE

WINNER’S REQUIREMENTS.

FOR YOUR CHANCE TO WIN THIS FANTASTIC

PRIZE, SIMPLY ANSWER

THE FOLLOWING QUESTION:

WHERE IS THE HART SPA BASED?

SEND YOUR ANSWER, ALONG WITH WITH YOUR

NAME, EMAIL ADDRESS AND POSTCODE BY

EMAIL TO COMPETITIONS@JAIMEMAGAZINE.COM

WITH THE HART SPA COMPETITION AS THE EMAIL

SUBJECT. ENTRIES MUST BE RECEIVED BY 5PM ON

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 26, AND OUR WINNER WILL BE

NOTIFIED BY WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 31. TERMS

AND CONDITIONS APPLY. VISIT

WWW.JAIMEMAGAZINE.COM FOR FURTHER DETAILS.

63


I N T H E N E W S

A Mini adventure for charity

A local businessman is undertaking an epic journey

across Europe behind the wheel of a classic car to

raise funds for a children’s charity.

Scott Humphreys, managing director of Peppermill

Interiors, is taking on The Italian Job at the end of

October to raise money for children’s charity Buttle

UK. Scott and his brother Brian, along with friends

Dom and Ian are squeezing into two vintage Minis

- one 1998 and one 1971 - and driving from the

Midlands to Turin, Italy.

The team will drive to France, via Dover, then on to

Germany, Switzerland, and into Italy where they will

begin The Italian Job 2019 in Imola with 50 to 100

other Minis.

The Minis and the trip are self-funded. Any money

raised will go to support children in need throughout

the UK, and Scott is hoping they will be able to

reach their target of £20,000.

Scott said: “We’ve set a steep target, but we’re

confident that we can achieve it. The Italian Job

event has been running since 1990 and has so far

raised more than £2.5million for children’s charities,

projects and foundations across the world. The

money will go towards a worthy cause, and every

penny donated is greatly appreciated.”

Buttle UK provide essentials to children across the

UK. As little as £10 will provide a swimming lesson

for a child who needs an escape from witnessing

domestic abuse, £150 will provide a bed for a child

previously sleeping on the floor, and £1,000 will

enable a student estranged from their family to

study at college or university and help realise their

aspirations.

In a rerun of the famous 1969 film, the troop of

Minis will spend the week travelling to various iconic

destinations, including the Dino Ferrari racing circuit

and the Lingotto rooftop track, as featured in the

original movie. As part of the trip, the team will also

be visiting a children’s home in Turin and are taking

gifts with them to donate.

If you would like to sponsor Scott, Brian, Dom and

Ian, head over to their JustGiving page at www.

justgiving.com/fundraising/scott-dom-the-italianjob.

For a donation of £100+ businesses can have

their logos displayed on one of the Minis; please

contact aimee@peppermillinteriors.com for

more information.

The trip begins on October 27 and finishes on

November 2; you can follow their progress in the

lead up to, during, and after the trip on Peppermill

Interiors’ blog page and on their social media

channels.

Buttle UK is a registered charity. To find out more

visit www.buttleuk.org

64


M OTO R S

Life in the fast lane

THIS MONTH, J’AIME’S MOTORING EXPERT AND RESIDENT RACING DRIVER MARTIN PLOWMAN

TAKES A LOOK BACK AT HIS TIME RACING WITH ONE OF MOTORSPORT’S ALL-TIME GREATS

The 2018 F1 battle between Ferrari and Mercedes,

Hamilton and Vettel is what the sport has been

craving for quite a while. Two four-time world

champions going head to head.

Love him or hate him, Lewis Hamilton will go down

in history as one of greatest drivers of all time, if

not the greatest - which pains me to say as an Ayrton

Senna fan. Some of his performances this year, such

as his qualifying lap at Singapore, will only help to

cement his cult-like status as a driver.

I was lucky enough to have seen Lewis in his very

early years of racing and, for a short few years, even

raced on the same kart team as him. Life for Lewis

these days consists of private jets, fashion shows

and VIP parties, yet life for Lewis wasn't always so

glamorous. I fondly remember a very different time,

travelling on hundreds of dreaded Ryanair flights

with Lewis, but more on that later.

Lewis is a couple of years older than me, and for

the majority of my junior racing career he was in

the next age-class above, so thankfully I never had

to go up against him! That was with the exception

of my very first year of racing at the tender age of

eight. I had just completed my novice licence, and

my parents entered me into a local club race at the

Birmingham Wheels kart track. I was nervous and

excited about my first big race without novice plates.

There would even be some 'big' name drivers who

raced in the British Championships there, including

an 11-year-old kid called Lewis who had just been

signed by Mclaren-Mercedes as a karting prodigy.

The only time I overtook Lewis

I knew the track very well as it was where I had

learnt how to drive, but going up against some of the

best under 12s in the country as an eight-year-old

was daunting! Practice seemed to be going well, I was

keeping up with the karts around me until one lap

I was passed by the famous yellow helmet of Lewis.

He instantly became a target for me, and I got my

head down determined to race him! After a few laps

of following him and learning his lines, I slowly got

closer and closer until I slipped by on the straight

to overtake him. The following lap I found myself

2000 WAS THE YEAR

MARTIN JOINED

DINO’S KART TEAM

AND THIS IS HOW

HE REMEMBERS

NICO AND LEWIS

BEFORE THEY BOTH

BECAME F1 WORLD

CHAMPIONS AND

REACHED SUPER-

STARDOM

face first in the tyre barrier. Apparently, 11-year-old

super-stars in the making don't like being passed

by scrawny eight-year-olds fresh off of their novice

plates!

Soon after the session was over, my on-track antics

had attracted the curiosity of Lewis' father Anthony,

who I presume had come to see the 'amazing talent'

who had just passed his son. After eyeing my kart

up and down and a few polite, inquisitive questions

to my parents about how long I had been racing,

he turned to my dad and said: "Do you realise that

you have an 80cc Comer engine?" To clarify, the

Cadet class in England for eight-to-11-year-olds

used SIXTY cc Comer engines. The rest of Europe

at that time used EIGHTY cc Engines. My dad

had unknowingly been sold an illegal engine by

some karting father con-artist who had offloaded an

unusable engine to an unsuspecting novice karting

parent. No wonder I passed Lewis; I had 25 per cent

more power than the rest of the field!

After that weekend, my parents stayed in contact

with Anthony and our families becoming good

friends. Over the years, Anthony became sort of

a career advisor to me and my parents, helping us

to navigate through the treacherous web of junior

karting and helping us to make the right career

moves up the motorsport ladder. Back in 2000, I

had just won the British Open Championship in

Formula Yamaha for 12-16-year-olds in my first

65


year in the class. But the racing that year was pretty

miserable as English karting was becoming rife

with corruption, cheating and the overall driving

standards were becoming dangerous, more akin to

destruction derby with a lack of law and order from

the race stewards. It's hard to believe, but as a family,

we almost walked away from the sport entirely that

year, so disillusioned by how bad things got. That

was until Anthony called to convince my parents that

sending me to race in Europe would be the best thing

for me. The best young drivers in the world raced in

Europe, so if I was to get ahead in the sport, I had to

compete against the best.

Ryanair flights and late night gelato

Lewis was racing in the Senior karting World

Championships at the time in a team run by karting

guru Dino Chiesa, funded by Mclaren. Lewis' team

mate was a kid called Nico Rosberg, son of 1985

F1 World Champion Keke. Reluctantly my parents

agreed. They were terrified as it meant I would be

travelling more and more abroad, but also financially

they had to work extra overtime to find the money to

support that move, as sponsorship for 13-year-olds is

next to impossible to find.

My first year of racing in Europe involved weekly

trips to Stansted airport with my dad, where we

would meet Anthony and Lewis. I was not yet old

enough to legally travel by myself so my dad would

accompany me to Italy with Lewis to where Dino's

karting team was based. Anthony, entrusting the care

of his son to my dad, was to make sure that Lewis

arrived at the hotel fed and in bed before 11pm to be

ready for the big race weekend.

I still remember the very first trip with my dad

and Lewis like it was yesterday. Landing in Italy,

we picked up the rental car armed with only

printed directions. Portable sat-navs were not yet

commonplace, so here we were in a foreign country,

and little old me was given the task of following the

instructions from four A4 pieces of paper. Needless

LEWIS HAMILTON (1)

DIRECTLY IN FRONT

OF EIGHT-YEAR-OLD

MARTIN (UNION JACK

HELMET)

LEWIS WAS WIDELY

KNOWN AS A SUPER-

STAR IN THE MAKING

FROM DAY ONE

to say, my dad was (and still is) hopeless at following

directions and so we eventually set off on our way to

the hotel in the 'Zona Industriale' in Padova. It was

on that car trip that I learnt what a prostitute was,

after Lewis and my dad had to awkwardly explain

why I saw a dozen or more scantily-clad ladies

standing on street corners of the industrial zone in

the middle of winter. I had lived a very sheltered

Church of England life until then!

We finally got to the hotel after 11pm, tired and

starving. Dozens of wrong turns, and with the help

of some broken-English instructions from drunk

locals at a bar, we made it. Since we got to the hotel

so late, all of the restaurants had already shut up

shop for the night. My dad had already failed to get

Lewis in bed by 11pm and was about to fail at the

feeding him (and me) part too! In a panic, he asked if

there was anywhere open that served food. The lady

at the reception replied that there was a gelateria

open just down the road. The three of us trundled

down the street in search of anything to get my dad

out of trouble.

And so we found the gelateria, neon lights

shining like heaven's pearly gates - my dad

would be saved. Pulling out all of the stops

to put things right and make sure Lewis

wouldn't grass to his father, my dad let us

order literally anything we wanted from the

store. Lewis' choice? A 2kg styrofoam bathtub

of stracciatella gelato. We slowly walked our

way back to the hotel eating our body weight

in Italian ice cream. "This is the best dinner

ever," exclaimed Lewis. "Don't you dare tell

your Dad anything!" warned my dad.

Thankfully Lewis went on to win that

weekend, despite the extra kilo of ice cream

he was carrying.

66


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