Local Life - St Helens - March 2020

locallife247

St Helens' FREE local lifestyle magazine.

LocalLife

St Helens Edition March 2020

Events2Go

Pages 42-44

Halls of St. Helens

Pages 20-22

Jacks Tracks:

Sandstone Trail

Pages 46-49

Local News Motoring Jack’s Tracks Health Events2Go Home Services

locallife247.co.uk


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www.locallife247.co.uk 5

This month’s highlights

20. Halls of St. Helens

Contents

26. Puzzle Pages

Try these brainteasers for size

28. Books

Books for Mother’s Day

37. Recipe

Sticky Chinese chicken wings

38. Health Section

Core strength & motivation

42. Events2Go

16. Building for Books 34. Take the High Road

Stay busy this March!

50. Gardening

Time to make a change?

56. Home Services

Find a local trader for you.

46. Jack’s Tracks: Sandstone Trail

45. Beef in Guinness

54. Test Drive

Want to

promote your

business in

LocalLife?

Next issue - April 2020

Advertising deadline - 20th March

Published - 2nd April

01744 649 722

www.locallife247.co.uk


6 News & Features

Young Artists

The St. Helens Youth Open Art Competition 2020

opens for submissions this month!

Young people from nursery-age through to Key

Stage 4 are all encouraged to enter, with separate

categories depending on age group. There’s also a

category for secondary school photography and

digital art, which could result in a work placement

at Vinyline Graphics for the lucky winner.

Works are welcomed across all mediums, from

sketches to sculptures; mixed media to short films.

Submissions should be handed in at St. Mary’s

Market on Tuesday, March 10 or Wednesday, March

11, from 2pm-5pm. The works will then be exhibited

from Saturday, March 21 until Friday, May 1 in The

World of Glass and the market, with a prize-giving

ceremony on Thursday, March 26.

For more information or to download an entry form,

visit www.sthelens.gov.uk/youthopenart or call

01744 676498.

Make her

Mother’s Day special

with a gift of flowers!

Spring Into Style!

175th Celebration

Bipsham Methodist Church on Crank Road in Billinge

celebrates its 175th anniversary this month.

The occasion will be marked by a series of events:

on Saturday, March 7, the church will hold a Gift

Day from 10am-12pm with refreshments, before

Bispham’s Own Concert takes place in the evening.

A night of music, poetry and quizzing awaits you

from 6:30pm - tickets cost £7.50 including a hotpot

supper, dessert and a glass of bubbly, bookable on

07913 382258.

A special Family Service takes place on Sunday,

March 8, from Chair of the District Rev. Paul Martin,

followed by a raffle and refreshments in the church

hall. Finally, at 6pm on the Sunday, join a special

service led by Rev Shaun Swithenbank in church.

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7

Rainford Ride

The Lancashire Lanes Sportive returns in April with

a brand new route.

Starting from Rainford High School, choose from

a 45 mile or 75 mile fully signposted cycle route to

help raise funds for the Steve Prescott Foundation.

Entry to the longer race costs £20, or £16 for

the 45 mile route, both including beans on

toast at the finish. For an entry form, visit www.

steveprescottfoundation.co.uk or call 07971

792859. The event takes place on Sunday, April 26

from 9am.

Go Greenslate

Greenslate Community Farm in Billinge will hold a

monthly Farmers’ Market packed with local produce

and delicious food.

Beginning on Sunday, March 8, the market will take

place on the second Sunday of the month from

11am-3pm. Since the closure of the nearby Rainford

Farmers’ Market, Greenslate saw the need for a

permanent event in Orrell, to help support the local

economy and environment.

If you’d like to get involved with a stall, email

Rhiannon at rhiannon@greenslatefarm.org.uk with

details of what you’d like to sell.

For more information, check out Greenslate Farm’s

Facebook page or visit www.greenslatefarm.org.uk

Charity Boot Sale

A car boot sale in aid of Willowbrook Hospice will

take place at the Living Well on Borough Road on

Saturday, April 25 from 9am-12pm.

Whether you’re looking for a bargain or want to

shift some pre-loved goods, what better reason

than to support a local hospice?

Pitches cost £10 - secondhand sales only please.

The on-site cafe and shop will be open to serve

refreshments on the day.

For more information or to book, call 01744 453798

or email events@willowbrookhospice.org.uk


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Picnic in the Park

Rainford’s premier music festival returns this

summer - and tickets are already selling fast!

Picnic in the Park 2020’s line-up is already an

impressive one. Headlining the show this year

is tribute band From the Jam, featuring Russell

Hastings - the only frontman other than Weller

to have worked with both Bruce Foxton and Rick

Buckler. The band will transport you right back to

the mod days of your youth.

Also on this year’s line-up is cover-singing trio

Perfect Strangers, ABBA-tribute Masters of the

Scene, and Ultra 90s, proffering an awesome mix of

90s dance tracks.

Four-piece rock band Days Above, based out

of Ellesmere Port, bring a variety of upbeat and

energetic covers from the 60s right up to the

modern day, as well as original tracks, to the stage.

Meanwhile, Wigan rock n’ roll band Boomin present

a set of unpredictable original songs.

The event takes place on Saturday, June

6. Tickets this year cost £20 per adult

or £10 per primary school child. VIP

gazebo packages are also available for

£140, including 6 standard tickets and

a plot for your gazebo. Proceeds go to

local sports teams and organisations.

Wristbands are bookable now at

www.rainfordfestival.co.uk

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Serves Up!

Rainford Tennis Club is a fantastic venue to play

tennis - and new members are always welcome.

Along with team tennis leagues, one-on-one

coaching sessions and access to all-weather courts,

the club is a great place to socialise with fellow

tennis enthusiasts. There are annual awards nights,

BBQs, social nights and open days to take part in

when you’re off the court.

For more information and membership fees, visit

www.rainfordtennisclub.co.uk

St. Helens Secrets

A community cafe in St. Helens has discovered a

hidden bunker beneath its floorboards.

Claire Rigby, owner of Momo’s Cafe on Westfield

Street, discovered a World War II air raid shelter after

hearing rumours of one located somewhere on the

street.

The shelter was converted from a Beecham’s

storeroom; once Claire had drained the water

flooding the space, she uncovered original

furnishings from the room’s use in the 30s and 40s.

Claire hopes to eventually open the area to the

public, though a lot of work would need to be

undertaken in order to make it safe.

Put Your Records On

Free DJ workshops for young people aged 7-17 are

taking place around the borough this month, in

association with UC Crew.

Join DMC finalist and two-times IDA champion DJ

P-Nutz to learn the essentials of DJing including beat

matching, scratching, mixing and turntable tricks.

Workshops take place at Parr Library on Monday,

March 9 at 5:30pm, at Darkstar Ultimate Laser on

Friday, March 20 at 7pm or Thatto Heath Library on

Friday, March 27 at 5pm. Spaces are limited to 15

participants - just pop into the venue to book.

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Funding Available

Community organisations across St. Helens are

eligible to apply for grants of up to £10,000 for

projects that help young people support each other

during bereavement.

Co-Op Funeralcare in St. Helens are partners in

this stage of the Co-Op Foundation’s #IWill fund,

which aims to make social action a part of life for

young people. Past grants have tackled improving

community spaces and combatting loneliness; this

particular project comes about in response to a

survey that found 16-29 year olds are the most likely

to bottle up grief.

Around 5 grants are expected to be made in total;

groups have until noon on Friday, April 3 to apply.

For more info, visit www.coopfoundation.org.uk

Tell Us Your Story!

Local Life is always on

the look out for news

stories from the local

communities we serve.

Are you raising money

for charity? Are you a

member of a community

group with something

to shout about? Maybe

you’ve got an unusual

talent, or have a claim to fame? If so, let us know

and you could be appearing in the next edition!

Simply call us on 01695 627999 or contact us on

sthelensnews@locallife247.co.uk


14

April Arts

Citadel Arts has a full programme of family events

scheduled for the Easter holidays – here’s what to

expect at the former Argos store on Church Street.

On Saturday, April 4, John Hinton brings his show

‘Ensonglopedia’, bursting with science-themed

songs and rhymes! Entry to the event is free, and

performances take place at 11am, 12pm and 1pm.

The next day sees a hilarious kid-friendly comedy

show come to St. Helens in ‘Funny Looking

Kids’. Tickets cost £5 or £3 concessions and the

performance begins at 2:30pm.

Babies aged 0-2 will love interactive opera ‘Meet

Me a Tree’, featuring a blend of classical music and

familiar nursery rhymes. Tickets cost £5 per child

(adults go free) and the show starts at 11am, with

optional free play at 10:30am.

Take a magical musical bus ride with ‘Rolling Down

the Road’, featuring singer-songwriter David Gibb.

The whole family won’t be able to resist singing

along! Tickets cost £5 or £3 concessions, and the

pre-show crafts get underway at 12:30pm on

Friday, April 17.

Finally, catch the unmissable Comedy Club for Kids

on Saturday, April 18 from 2pm. The show is perfect

for ages 6+, and invites the best stand ups to cut out

the rude bits and entertain the entire family. Tickets cost

£5 or £3 concessions. Pre-show crafts kick off at 1:30pm.

All tickets are bookable on 01744 753201.


15

Choir Concert

A special choral concert is taking place this month to

commemorate the 41st anniversary of the Golborne

Mining Disaster.

Join the Golborne Ex-Miners and Parkside Colliery

Male Voice Choir for a night of music on Saturday,

March 21 from 7:30pm at St. Thomas’s Church on

Church Street, Golborne.

Entry costs £6 with proceeds to financing the Edge

Green No 9 Mining Memorial.

Memories with Mum

Meet Your Muslim Neighbour are hosting a special

community event on Saturday, March 28. Try

your hand at Arabic calligraphy, Henna hand art

and more. There’ll also be a prize presentation for

the winners of the Mother’s Day poetry and art

competition.

The event takes place at St. Mary’s Market in the

town centre from 10am-4pm.

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16

Building for books

A local college student is making a special

trip to Ghana to help build a new library for a

disadvantaged village.

Alana Hesketh, whose mum Carla owns Billingebased

independent travel agent Marken Travel, had

dreamed of taking part in the voluntary Enliven

Mama scheme since high school, but knew getting

there would require plenty of hard work and

determination.

‘The trip was actually part of the reason I opted to go

to Winstanley College,’ Alana tells me. ‘It’s a chance

to be part of something completely life-changing

for the villagers – and for me. I recently learned that

they’re currently using a single pocket dictionary

to teach an entire class English, so the

new library should help!’

but this will definitely be a new challenge.’

Along with the three hikes, Alana has already

hosted a fundraising bake sale at college and a

tombola stall at Wigan Christmas Fair last year.

She’s also hosting a Games Night on Friday, March

20 from 7:30pm-10pm at Rainford All Saints Parish

Church Hall - expect bingo games and quizzes, plus

a raffle with plenty of prizes. Tickets cost £5 and

are available from Marken Travel. Attendees are

welcome to bring their own drinks, with cakes and

snacks for sale throughout the evening.

You can donate to Alana’s cause at

www.gofundme.com/f/1t3fj62t9c or hand in cash

donations at Marken Travel on Main Street, Billinge.

Alana will head to the Ashanti region

of Ghana, to a village near Kumasi,

and get involved with establishing a

new library filled with books donated

by Orrell Book-Cycle, who will fill an

entire shipping container to send over.

Winstanley College are also providing

old computers to furnish the new

library. The two-week Enliven Mama

project will take place at the end of

June.

Alana needs to fundraise a total of

£2000 to pay towards the charity work

and her own travel expenses – and to

do so, she’s planning to conquer the 3

peaks along with her dog Ava, helped

along with her parents and friend Ruth.

‘We’re going to be climbing Scafell Pike,

Ben Nevis and Mount Snowdon,’ Alana

continues. ‘I’ve done a lot of climbing

in the Lake District before, and I used

to be a Scout, which gave me the idea,


17


18

People’s Plaques

Blue plaques can be found all across the country

to commemorate geographical locations and their

links to famous people, events or former buildings.

This month we’re looking at a blue plaque dedicated

to St. Helens’ sporting history, found on the site of

the former Saints ground on Knowsley Road.

Now a housing estate off Dunriding Lane, the

ground was home to the St. Helens rugby team

since 1890, pre-dating the birth of the Northern

Rugby Football Union by five years. As a rugby

union club since their conception in 1873, St.

Helens only switched to playing rugby league

after the inaugural meeting of the Northern Union

in Huddersfield in 1895. Talks took place at the

George Hotel, and resulted in 22 clubs breaking

away from the Rugby Football Union (RFU) to form

their own northern committee – the first ever semiprofessional

rugby football game founding modern

CELEBRATING THE BIRTH OF RUGBY LEAGUE

On this site on 7th September 1895,

St Helens played their first home game

under the rules of Rugby League

(then known as the Northern Union)

day rugby league.

St Helens v Rochdale Hornets

Saints continued to play at Knowsley Road until

its closure in 2010 and subsequent demolition the

following year. The ground was also home to St.

Helens Town FC from 2002-2010.

22 blue plaques were installed across the country,

at the sites of all the original Northern Union

grounds, to mark the 120th anniversary of the

game’s conception in 2015.

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St. Helens Search

Heart of Glass is inviting people from across the

borough to take to the streets for a treasure hunt

with a difference.

Street Hunt, the latest project from the St. Helensbased

arts organisation and artist Joshua Sofaer,

is a sort of visual crossword puzzle. From April 4th,

families, individuals and groups could win up to

£6,000 - just purchase a Street Hunt book and start

the search! You’ll be looking for road signs shown

in various photographs with some vital information

blanked out, and it’s your job to fill out the missing

names.

Eventually, the names will reveal a poem, and a

story will be gradually revealed. The more people

participating, the bigger the prize pot! There’s

a guaranteed minimum prize of £1,000, and a

maximum of £6,000 if all the books are sold, for the

first person to complete their book.

Books cost £6 each and will be available at the

old Argos store in the Hardshaw Centre. For more

information, visit www.heartofglass.org.uk

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20

Halls of St. Helens

By Jess Phillips

St. Helens is full of hidden gems: picturesque nature

reserves, impressive factories and awe-inspiring

historic buildings. Set back in expansive grounds or

hidden by trees, many of these buildings are easily

missed by the untrained eye, and that’s only the ones

that have managed to evade demolition.

Perhaps an even unluckier fate is for the years to

pass without intervention and the sites to fall into

disrepair, as with Winstanley Hall in Wigan and St.

Joseph’s Seminary in Up Holland. The years have

been slightly kinder to Rainford Hall, Fairfield House

and Birchley Hall - all located within 4 miles of each

other – as they’ve all been redeveloped into usable,

modern spaces. But what of their heritage?

image credit: Carol Southward

Birchley Hall

On Birchley Road in Billinge you’ll find Birchley

Hall Care Home, operated under the banner of

Qualia Care. But the Grade-II* listed building has

an illustrious history spanning centuries; first built

around 1594 (though a house did exist on the site

since 1202), Birchley Hall had an essential part to

play during the Reformation of the sixteenth and

seventeenth centuries.

Christopher Anderton purchased the land for the

Birchley Hall estate from Roger Wetherelt in 1558,

during the rule of Queen Elizabeth I. Christopher

died in 1593, and was succeeded by his son James,

who followed in his father’s footsteps to become a

lawyer. It was James who built the current Birchley

Hall and set up an illegal Catholic printing press out

of it during the persecution; as a Catholic stronghold

during the reigns of Henry VIII and Elizabeth I, St.

Helens in Lancashire was the ideal place for such a

press to be established in 1604.

Birchley Hall Press, including James Anderton

and his cousin Lawrence, produced around 25

titles including ‘One God; One Faith’, ‘The Christian

Manna’ and ‘The Non-Entitie of Protestancy.’ Most

were published under the pseudonym John Brerely

to protect the Andertons from persecution, though

the press was eventually discovered by a spy in

1613 and all the books seized.

Birchley Hall was also home to a secret chapel;

erected around 1618 - perhaps just before James’

death later that year - the chapel was built above

one of the wings of the hall. A trap door was installed

in the floor for priests to escape if necessary, while

another concealed opening led out to the roof. It

was here that a watcher would be stationed to

alert chapel attendees to anyone approaching.

In the 1940s, a pewter chalice, vestments and a

few altar-stones were discovered in Birchley Hall,

which would have been carried by priests. During

the Reformation, celebrating Mass was punishable

by death, so any Catholic priests who continued to

preach took a great risk in doing so.

Rumours have circulated of a hidden tunnel

from Birchley Hall to Crank Caverns, for priests to

escape out into the open, but these have not been

confirmed.


21

houses either side of the main building.

In the midst of WWII in 1943, the Hall was

requisitioned by the War Department for use in

the war effort, and afterwards became a children’s

home and a student hostel before its conversion

into office space.

image credit: Qualia Care

The Gerard family eventually acquired Birchley Hall

in the 19th century, letting it to a series of tenants,

before it was sold to John Middlehurst in 1898. In

1944 it was sold again to Vincent Wood, a relative

of the Middlehursts, who lived there until the hall

became a Sue Ryder care home in 1975.

Not so lucky was the nearby Muncaster Hall, a

uniquely Victorian building located at the top

of Muncaster Drive in Rainford. The hall was first

home to Richard Pennington in 1857; the heir to

a wealthy cotton mill in Hindley, Pennington and

wife Elizabeth took over several farms and houses

in Rainford. Later, the Hall and its associated

properties, which totalled 315 acres, were sold to

the Earl of Derby for £37,000.

Muncaster Hall was later leased to the Pilkington

family, and purchased in 1940 by Richard Heyes for

agricultural purposes. It was eventually demolished

in the 1950s, just 100 years after its erection.

In 1951 the Birchley Hall Press was resurrected,

operating in the same building as the original,

more rudimentary press. Vincent Wood took

care of the actual printing through his company

Wood Westworth & Co. Ltd., based in St. Helens. It

published a few titles including ‘Liverpool’s Hidden

Story’ and ‘This is the Faith’,

until around 1960, and

image credit: Carol Southward

now exists as a publisher

of online magazines in

Hampshire.

image credit: Carol Southward

Rainford Hall

Located on Crank

Road, close to Fairfield

Hospital, Rainford Hall

was developed into office

spaces in the eighties. The hall was

first built back in 1782, purchased

by Colonel Richard Pilkington from

its previous owner Dr Alexander

McKibbin in 1875. Pilkington was

the first to redevelop the hall into a

building better befitting the 19th

century, adding various farms and

image credit: Sue Adair


22

image credit: David Dixon

Fairfield House

Now known as Fairfield Independent Hospital,

Fairfield House began its life as yet another

Pilkington family home. Old maps show Rainford

Hall as the main property on the some 1,600 acres

of land it occupied, with a building named Crank

Hall slightly north and Fairfield House off to the

west. Crank Hall ended up as a Macmillan Hospice

before it was eventually demolished towards the

end of the 20th century, but Fairfield House lived

on.

It was at Fairfield House in 1918 that Godfrey

Pilkington was born. The son of Colonel Guy

Pilkington, one of the directors of the Pilkington

company, Godfrey went on to become a director

himself: albeit not in the glass industry! From

1953 until his death in 2007, Godfrey Pilkington

was a director at Piccadilly Gallery in London and

a devout art enthusiast, trading only the pieces he

believed in. Godfrey was a trustee of St. Helensbased

charity the Rainford Trust, set up to promote

the arts in the local area, and gave his name to

the Godfrey Pilkington Art Gallery in the Gamble

Institute. His artistic leanings were instrumental in

securing Antony Gormley and Anthony Green to

sit on the judging panel for the St. Helens Open Art

Competition, which he chaired.

Colonel Guy Pilkington made Fairfield House his

home in the 1950s and 60s, lending his name to the

building once it became a hospital, operated under

the Guy Pilkington Memorial Home. It admitted its

first patients in 1980.

It’s easy for the historic buildings around us to fade

into the background on our daily commute or when

out and about in the local area. But lurking just

beyond the surface are examples of St. Helens’ rich

heritage, just waiting to be rediscovered.

image credit: Irene Garvey

image credit: Sue Adair


23

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24


25

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26

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11. Front part of the human leg

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4. Consortium of companies formed to limit

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5. Device providing access to a computer (8)

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19. Tall tower referred to in the Bible (5)

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23. Official symbols of a family, state, etc (4)

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22. State of deep unconsciousness (4)

24. Russian rulers (5)

25. Tell a story (7)

26. Trader who sells sewing and

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27

WORDSEARCH

THEME: Cities

Find the hidden words in the word search grid

Accra

Amsterdam

Ankara

Athens

Beirut

Belgrade

Berlin

Bern

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Cairo

Hanoi

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Moscow

Muscat

Nicosia

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Paris

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Seoul

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Tunis

Victoria

Warsaw

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The numbers in each row add up to totals to the

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The diagonal lines also add up

the totals to the right.

3 1 2 5

5 3 8 7

7 4 2 4

3 6 1 2

18 14 13 18

20

11

23

17

12

10

All the puzzle solutions can be found

on page 62 of this magazine


28

Books for Mother’s Day

It’s not always easy to get five minutes to yourself when you’re a mum,

particularly if you have young children demanding your attention. So

if you’re looking for a gift this Mother’s Day, why not combine a book

with the promise of free time? Take the kids to the park for a couple

of hours so that mum can collapse on the sofa to read in peace.

Dear Mum, From You To Me

We’ll admit, this is as much of a gift to you as it is to

her. Unlike a normal journal, Dear Mum, From You

To Me uses prompts to help your mum record her

memories. The idea is that she’ll pass the book back

to you when she’s finished writing in it, so that you

can get to know her better and have a record of her

life to treasure.

The Happiness Project

Gretchen Rubin

While it can seem that the days of

sleep deprivation and explosive

nappies will never end, children

grow up pretty quickly. This lovely

journal asks mums to just write

one or two sentences each day, about their children,

work, or life in general. It’s set out for one date per

page, but with room for five years’ of memories, so

the diarist can then look back to see what thought

was top of their mind that day a few years ago.

According to Yes

Dawn French

Rosie Kitto is one of those

characters it’s pretty much

impossible not to like. Slightly

eccentric and warm-hearted to

boot, primary teacher Rosie sets

off from England to work as a nanny for the rigidly

upper-class Wilder-Binghams in Manhattan. Funny

and at times poignant, it’s a light-hearted easy read.

The Secret Life of a

Slummy Mummy

Fiona Neill

As a Newsnight Producer, Lucy

Sweeney had it all under control,

but her life as a stay-at-home

mum is anything but orderly. From

trying to dodge the yummy mummies and alpha

mums at the school gates, to fantasising about

Sexy Domesticated Dad, Lucy bounces from one

hilarious mishap to the next.

Neal’s Yard Beauty Book

Susan Curtis, Fran Johnson and

Pat Thomas

Beauty Book provides a wealth

of advice on everything from

treating dry skin to makeup

application. The benefits of a huge range of

ingredients are listed, from almond oil to black

pepper, and there are step-by-step recipes for

making a wide range of beauty products.

Eating Well Made Easy

Lorraine Pascale

While it focuses on healthy eating,

these recipes are far from bland.

They’re also straightforward

to follow and use ingredients

you can pick up from your local

shop. Recipes include Sichuan Bang Bang Chicken,

Mushroom and Chestnut Lancashire Hotpot.


29

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31


32

PENSION & RETIREMENT PLANNING

ARE YOU RETIREMENT READY?

When asked about retirement, most

people have a vision of a comfortable

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33

FOR INDEPENDENT FINANCIAL ADVICE

Our Services and Charges:

An initial meeting is at our expense. To

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please call True Bearing today on 01257 260011


34

Take the

High Road

By Jess Phillips

Rugged mountain ranges, verdant grasslands and

unblemished lochs – the Scottish Highlands have

it all. With hidden castles and mysterious crags

around every corner, the best way to experience the

landscape is to go and explore it for yourself, just

as Birds of a Feather actress Lesley Joseph did on

Holidaying with Jane McDonald and Friends, opting

to tour the beautiful Loch Lomond, Fort William and

Inveraray.

There’s no place better to get a feel for the

Highlands’ renowned natural beauty than Loch

Lomond and the surrounding Trossachs National

Park. Whether you’re setting up your tent for a

night in the wilderness or heading off to climb

the numerous Munroes for a better view of the

picturesque surroundings, there’s a huge variety of

activities and sights on offer. Start at Inchcailloch

Summit - a small island located on Loch Lomond

and accessible via boat; its woodland is a fantastic

place for wildlife spotting, while the island itself

offers unmarred views across the loch. If you’re

looking for a bit more of a challenge, try Ben More,

the highest Munro in the area at 1,174 metres tall.

Of course, there’s plenty more to do on the bonnie

banks of Loch Lomond after you’ve worn yourself

out walking. Pay a visit to the Birds of Prey Centre,

try kayaking or treat the kids to an adrenalinefuelled

day at the TreeZone Aerial Adventure course.

Gentle boat trips offer an exclusive view of the loch,

with expert guides on hand to provide insight on

the intricate workings of the waterways. Catch a

cruise from Balloch for spectacular introduction

to the southern section of the loch, or from Luss,

Tarbet or Inveruglas to explore the fjord-inspired

northern shores.


35

It is the nearby village of Tarbet

which provided a home base for

Lesley Joseph when she took a

Shearings coach break as part of

the Channel 5 show, ‘Holidaying

with Jane McDonald and Friends’.

The quiet hamlet is the ideal

location for traversing the local

landscape: just an hour’s drive

away is the bohemian culture

capital Glasgow; an hour in the

opposite direction you’ll find

Inveraray Castle. Built in the

1700s, the contemporary building

actually replaced the former 15th century castle,

and was inspired by designs from Vanbrugh, the

architect who designed Blenheim Palace. The castle

boasts four turrets with conical roofs in truly Gothic

fashion, which provided the perfect backdrop for a

shoot of Downton Abbey back in 2012. Visitors can

tour the castle’s interior and sweeping grounds,

including the Armoury Hall and China Turret –

so named for its extensive collection of Oriental

porcelain.

For a truly cinematic experience of the Highlands,

travelling by train is your best bet. The West Highland

Line travels from Glasgow to Oban, Fort William or

Mallaig, traversing a daunting landscape of rocky

precipices and untamed countryside. The train to

Mallaig passes over the Glenfinnan Viaduct – used for

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36 Travel

the Hogwarts Express in the Harry Potter films – while

the Oban line skirts past the aptly named Loch Awe.

Single malt fans should disembark at Fort William

to sample locally distilled whisky at the Ben Nevis

Distillery. Established back in 1825, the venue

promises the perfect dram, ranging from single

to vatted malts. The distillery still uses pure water

from the mountain and locally sourced peat in its

processes, leaving the whisky’s quality down to the

fresh Scottish elements.

And Fort William has more than just whisky to offer.

Set in the shade of Scotland’s tallest mountain, the

quaint port town borders the eastern shore of Loch

Linnhe, and is dotted with historic ruins. See the

remains of its namesake 17th century fort and the

Old Inverlochy Castle to discover more about the

town’s heritage. Afterwards, why not take a breather

and soak up the town’s peaceful atmosphere? Fort

William’s waterfront is dotted with cosy B&Bs,

classic pubs and stylish restaurants, making it the

perfect place to wind down for a while.

While you’re there, visit Neptune’s Staircase: an

elaborate series of locks dating back to the early

19th century, with a sculpted path running parallel

for canal enthusiasts and keen walkers alike. It’s

quite breath-taking to stand at the bottom and

look up at the vast staircase, but you’ll also find a

convenient viewing platform on the second floor of

a neighbouring café halfway up for an alternative

viewpoint.

Follow in Lesley Joseph’s famous footsteps or pave

your own way through the natural beauty of the

Highlands; whichever you choose, Scotland has

so many secrets to discover beyond the banks of its

many lochs. So ditch the plans to fly away this summer

and explore something a little closer to home – you

never know what you might come across.


37

READY

in 1hr 35mins

Serves

4-6

Sticky Chinese Chicken Wings

A perfect scrumptious supper dish

Ingredients

1.5 kg chicken wings

2 level tbsp baking POWDER

¾ tsp table salt

½ tsp pepper

3 spring onions, chopped

Sticky Chinese

Sauce

1 tsp vegetable oil

pinch of salt and pepper

1 thumb-sized piece of ginger

peeled and finely chopped

1 tbsp sweet chilli sauce

2 tbsp honey

4 tbsp dark brown sugar

5 tbsp dark soy sauce

1 tsp lemon grass paste

2 cloves garlic peeled and minced

1 tbsp sesame seeds (lightly toasted)

Method

1 Preheat the oven to 120C / 100C Fan Gas ½. Place a rack on a large

baking tray.

2 Cut each wing at the joint so you have a mini wing and a drumette. Dry

these with kitchen roll (they mustn’t be too damp, then place in a large

bowl and add the baking powder, salt and pepper. Mix to combine.

Remove the chicken and place in a single layer on the rack, skin side

up. Discard the remaining coating mixture. Place the chicken on the

lower shelf of the oven for 30 minutes to dry.

3 After 30 minutes, turn the oven up to 220C / 200 Fan / Gas 6, rotate

the tray and place on the middle shelf in the oven for 45-50 minutes

until the wings are golden and crispy. Remove from the oven to cool

slightly.

4 Place all of the sauce ingredients into a saucepan, stir and bring to the

boil. Allow to simmer for 5-10 minutes until the sauce reduces and

thickens slightly. Turn off the heat.

5 Place the cooked wing pieces in a large bowl and carefully pour

over the warm sticky sauce. Mix to combine, then serve topped with

chopped spring onions and some toasted sesame seeds.


38

Right to the Core

By Robert Grant

Why core exercises are important

We know that getting fit is important for a healthy

life. Often, we equate fitness with running, cycling,

walking or some other form of exercise. But

there’s one aspect of fitness that is almost always

overlooked; our core muscles.

Whenever I talk about building muscle everyone

pictures someone at a weight bench pumping

iron until their biceps bulge out of their shirts.

But strengthening and toning your muscles can

be much more subtle. And even a small amount

of work on your core strength can dramatically

improve your overall fitness and well-being.

What Are Your Core Muscles?

Your core muscles form a ring around the middle

of your body. Most people think of the six pack

muscles in the abdomen, but the core includes

a range of muscles in your sides and back as well.

Their job is to keep the top and bottom halves of

your body connected together whilst allowing

them to move independently. They form a strong

foundation that the majority of your other muscles

depend upon when you move your body.

When Do I Use My Core Muscles?

Practically every movement you make and every

position you put your body into involves your core

muscles. They are really important. Bending over

to pick something up, twisting to look behind you

and sitting up in bed are more obvious moments

your core is activated. But running, walking, sitting

in a chair and even standing still all rely on core

strength. Without it the top half of your body would

simply flop over.

What Are the Benefits of Core Strength?

Building a strong core provides a firm and flexible

support for every activity your body performs. The

stability provided gives you better balance and

better posture which in turn helps prevent falls and


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39

injuries in your day-to-day life. The support from

your core muscles takes the strain away from your

skeleton and helps hold it in place alleviating some

forms of back pain, stiffness and soreness when you

move your body.

Any time you move whether it’s for exercise or

doing the housework or gardening, a strong core

will help you perform better and reduce muscle

fatigue in the other parts of your body by giving

them a firm base to attach to.

How Can I Build My Core Strength?

One of the best things about core strength is that

you don’t need a gym or expensive equipment to

improve it. There are lots of exercises you can do at

home. Make sure you seek medical advice before

attempting any new exercise regime.

Most people think of sit ups as the prime core

exercise. I advise people not to do sit ups as they

are not particularly effective and the continual

flexing of the base of your spine can lead to lower

back injuries.

My top tips are planks, leg raises and mountain

climbers. If you’re not sure what these are have

a chat with your local personal trainer or gym

instructor, or search on YouTube for easy-to-follow

tutorials.

Take your core strength seriously and it will improve

every aspect of your fitness as well as provide the

central support essential for your body.

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40

Get Motivated.

Get Fit

By Robert Grant

Reinvigorate your fitness routine

It’s several weeks since my New Year resolution to

lose weight and get fit. It’s cold and damp outside.

The gym is miles away, and there’s a TV program

on about a knitting group in Nicaragua that looks

interesting, and this sofa is ever so comfortable.

My self-motivation tank is empty!

Does your determination and energy to get fit

after New Year’s Day seems to run out sooner each

year? Do you need to get fit? Do you need to lose

weight? Do you know you’ll feel better if you do? It’s

so much easier to fall back into old habits than to

actively make a difference to our health isn’t it? So

how do we stay motivated?

Motivation is all in the mind. There is no physical

difference between those who get fit and those

who get fat. The fit people are just those who

manage to leave the house and move their bodies.

Clearly, we need to help our mind overcome the

inertia currently preventing us moving from the

couch.

Get up, get dressed, get out.

It sounds simple but getting out of the door is

the biggest hurdle. If you can force yourself to go

through the motions of getting into your exercise

kit, walking to the door and out of the house you’re

90% of the way towards actually exercising. If you’re

standing outside dressed for exercise it’s harder


41

to change your mind and sneak back inside for

another slice of cake.

Set an alarm to tell you when it’s time for your

exercise class, run, etc. Make sure you’ve got

workout gear that makes you feel good. Something

stylish, comfortable, colourful, or high-tech; it

doesn’t matter, use whatever works for you. Make

the getting dressed part something to look forward

to. Baggy, stained, holey jogging bottoms will put

you off the idea of stepping outside. Then just grab

your keys, open the door and step outside.

Start slowly.

It’s important to pace yourself. Just because your

neighbour can sprint 5 km in 20 minutes doesn’t

mean that you have to. Whatever exercise you

are doing find a pace that is comfortable while

still pushing you. As you exercise more you will

gradually increase your exertion. Push yourself

too hard at the beginning and exercise will seem

exhausting, painful and make it harder to get

going the next time. Once you begin to see your

performance improving, you’ll get excited about

beating your personal best and want to prove to

yourself just how good you are.

Set a short-term goal.

The ultimate goal might be to fit into a size 10 dress,

or have a perfect six pack with matching biceps, but

realistically that’s probably more than a few months

away. Pick a goal that you can achieve within the

next two months. Dropping one dress size, being

able to run non-stop for 1 km, being able to do a

proper pull-up. Achieving goals is as important as

setting them when trying to keep your motivation

high. Small successful steps build one on the other

until all of a sudden, your ultimate goal is just within

reach.

Keep on keeping on. Don’t over-think it, just do it.


42

Upload your event for FREE at

www.locallife247.co.uk/events

Lenten Organ Recital

Thursday, March 5, 6pm-9pm

Peter and Carol Kwater in association with St.

Helens Sinfonietta present a wonderful night of

organ music. Enjoy a meal at 6pm before the recital

at 7:30pm. Tickets £10 on 01744 28314.

Ormskirk Street URC, King Street, St. Helens,

WA10 2JZ

World Day of Prayer

Friday, March 6, 1:30pm

A prayer service organised by the Christian women

of Zimbabwe, followed by refreshments.

Bispham Methodist Church, Crank Road, Billinge,

WN5 7DT

Danielle Louise Thomas

Friday, March 6, 7pm-9pm

An evening of music from Danielle Louise

Thomas and Liverpool Cathedral’s Gilbert Scott

Singers. Tickets £6 including hotpot supper, with

proceeds to Prescot Festival, on 07762 607618 or

prescotfestival@gmail.com

Prescot Parish Church, Church Street, Prescot, L34

3LA

Ladies Fashion Evening

Friday, March 6, 7pm

Browse jewellery, bags and ladies’ clothes for sale,

plus refreshments. Tickets £5 on 07788 863389.

Winstanley Tennis Club, Hall Lane, Orrell, WN5

7XN

Afternoon Tea

Saturday, March 7, 2pm

Celebrate International Women’s Day with a

delicious afternoon tea and entertainment from

Rainford Ladies Choir. Tickets £12.50 on 01942

270159 with proceeds to local charities.

All Saints Parish Hall, Church Road, Rainford,

WA11 8HE

Model Railway Exhibition

Saturday, March 7, 10am-5pm & Sunday, March 8,

10am-4:30pm

Enjoy an exhibition of model railways, with free

vintage bus rides between the show and the

Museum of Road Transport! Entry £5 per adult or £3

per child, more info at www.rainhillmrc.org.uk

Rainhill Village Hall, Dane Court, Rainhill, L35 4LU

Farmer’s Market

Sunday, March 8, 10am-3pm

Shop local produce with Greenslate’s inaugural

Farmer’s Market! Taking place the second Sunday

of every month, you’ll have the chance to help the

environment and source great food.

Greenslate Farm, Tracks Lane, Billinge, WN5 7BG

Spring Running Day

Sunday, March 8, 10am-4pm

Embark on free heritage bus rides around St.

Helens, browse transport stalls and more.

North West Museum of Road Transport, Hall St, St.

Helens, WA10 1DU


43

Family Fun Day

Sunday, March 8, 11am-4pm

Something for everyone to enjoy including yoga,

arts and crafts, messy play and holistic therapies.

Rainford Village Hall, Church Road, Rainford,

WA11 8HB

Spring Quiz

Friday, March 13, 7:30pm

Join Rainford Heritage Society for a fun quiz,

including a hotpot supper and raffle. Tickets £7 on

01744 885547.

Rainford X Sports & Social Club, Bushey Lane,

Rainford, WA11 7TE

St. Patrick’s Night

Friday, March 13, 8pm

Help fundraise for Prescot Mission Christmas

with a themed night of live entertainment and

a hotpot/curry supper! Tickets £10 at www.

prescotmissionchristmas.uk or from the venue.

Prescot Cables, Hope Street, Prescot, L34 6HB

Ladies Fashion Event

Saturday, March 14, 10am-2pm

Learn to boost your own style and self-confidence

with life coach Sandra Edwards and style consultant

Gina Dobson, and find which colours suit you!

Tickets £30 including refreshments on 07598

367552 or 07721 498230.

Rainford Village Hall, Church Road, Rainford,

WA11 8HB

Spanish Evening

Saturday, March 14, 7:30pm

Celebrate all things Spanish and look towards

summer! There’ll be Flamenco dancing, tapas,

sangria and more. Tickets £20 on 01744 884709.

Tribute Night

Saturday, March 14, 7:30pm

Raise awareness for HimVisible and help combat

suicide with a night of music from artists like One

Eyed God & Andy Wood. Tickets £6 from the venue.

Haresfinch Social Club, Haresfinch Rd, St. Helens,

WA11 9NS

St. Patrick’s Day Party

Saturday, March 14, 7:30pm

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with Irish music from

Roisin Dubh, plus beer pong and other pub games.

Tickets £5 including beef stew supper, proceeds

to local sports teams. Book on 01744 28866 or

events@ruskinsthelens.com

Sticky Wicket Bar & Grub, Ruskin Drive, St. Helens,

WA10 6RP

Bananaz Bingo

Friday, March 20, doors at 7pm

Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a night of crazy

bingo, dancing and fun prizes to raise money for

Willowbrook Hospice! Tickets £15 including 5

games and accessories, bookable on 01744 453798.

Rainhill Ex-Services Club, Warrington Road,

Rainhill, L35 4LS

Instagram Apocalypse

Friday, March 20, 7pm-8:30pm

A satirical look into anxiety and the strange era

we’re living in – who do you trust when the news

is fake and global politics is a joke? Tickets £6 for

adults, £5 for library card holders or £3 concessions

on Eventbrite or from the venue.

Chester Lane Library, Four Acre Lane, St. Helens,

WA9 4DE

Rainford Village Hall, Church Rd, WA11 8HB


44

Games Night

Friday, March 20, 7:30pm-10pm

Help Winstanley College student Alana Hesketh

raise money for a trip to Ghana with a fun night of

bingo, quizzes and a raffle! Tickets £5 from Marken

Travel on Main Street, Billinge.

Rainford All Saints Parish Church Hall, Church

Road, Rainford, WA11 8HE

Come Wine with Me

Friday, March 20, 7:30pm-11:30pm

Sample over 60 wines from all over the world, plus

enjoy a hotpot supper, to raise money for the Tunza

Centre! Tickets £10 on 07739 039177.

The Tunza Centre, Boundary Road, St. Helens,

WA10 2PZ

Northern Soul Night

Friday, March 20, 7:30pm-midnight

Enjoy a night of Northern Soul and Motown music

every third Friday of the month. Entry £3, call 07974

306180 for info.

Garswood Sports & Social Club, Garswood Road,

Garswood, 2N4 0XJ

Art Exhibition

Fri, March 20 - Sun, March 22, 10am onwards

See local artists exhibited in oone place, plus

entrants to the Junior Photography Competition.

Enquire at the Village Hall for entry details.

Rainford Village Hall, Church Road, Rainford,

WA11 8HB

Family Fun Day

Sunday, March 22, 11am-5pm

A fun time for the whole family, including the fun

dog show and dog walk event! The dog walk starts

at 11am.

Taylor Park, Grosvenor Rd, St. Helens, WA10 3HX

WWII Talk

Tuesday, March 24, 6pm

A look at life in St. Helens during the Second World

War, from a civilian’s point of view, by Sue Gerrard.

Tickets £3 or £5 including hotpot supper, bookable

at the venue.

Momo’s, Westfield Street, St. Helens, WA10 1QJ

Easter Egg Bingo

Wednesday, March 25, doors at 6pm

Join the Garswood Crochet Group for some Easterthemed

bingo, with fabulous prizes to be won.

Proceeds to Willowbrook Hospice.

Independent Methodist Church, Victoria Road,

Garswood, WN4 0RG

Lenten Organ Recital

Thursday, March 26, 6pm-9pm

Hear beautiful songs on the organ performed by

Will Jeys – organ scholar at Liverpool Cathedral.

Tickets £10 including a meal on 01744 28314 or

ormskirkstreet@btconnect.com

United Reformed Church, King Street, St. Helens,

WA10 2JZ

Thomas Beecham Talk

Tuesday, March 31, 6pm

An informative talk about Thomas Beecham,

founder of Beecham’s Pills. Tickets £3 or £5 including

hotpot supper, bookable at the venue.

Momo’s, Westfield Street, St. Helens, WA10 1QJ

Digital Maker Station

Thursday, April 9, 11am-4pm

A creative and crafty day of digital curiosities, filled

with free activities to get involved in. Drop in and

experiment!

Billinge Library, Main Street, Billinge, WN5 7HA


45

READY

in 3hrs 20mins

Serves

4-6

Beef in Guinness

with Herb Dumplings

Ingredients

For the stew

2 tbsp oil

1kg braising steak , cut into large

pieces

2 tbsp plain flour , well seasoned

3 onions , sliced

500ml Guinness

2 sprigs thyme

For the dumplings

75g butter, frozen and grated, or

75g suet

150g self-raising flour

1 small onion , grated

2 sprigs of thyme , leaves stripped

and chopped

Water for mixing

Method

1 Heat the oven to 150C/fan 130C/gas 2.

2 Heat a little of the oil in a large oven-proof pan.

3 Lightly flour the pieces of braising steak and fry in small batches until

well browned. Remove them with a slotted spoon and place them on

a plate.

4 Add the onions to the pan and fry on a fairly high heat until they soften

and tinge brown at the edges.

5 Pour the Guinness into the pan, letting it bubble up, then return the

meat to the pan along with the thyme. Cover the pan and transfer to

the oven for 2-2 1/2 hours or until tender. The sauce will sweeten and

thicken during the cooking time.

6 Make the dumplings (towards the end of the cooking time by mixing the

grated butter or suet, flour, onion and thyme together and season well.

7 Gradually add water to the dry ingredients until you have a soft dough.

Divide into 12 balls. Place the dumplings on top of the casserole and

return it to the oven, uncovered, for 25 minutes. Serve with shredded

Savoy cabbage.


46

Sandstone

Trail

by Chris Pearce

Distance: 7 miles Difficulty: Medium/Hard

A head for heights and a sure-footed nature are

necessary for this 7-mile walk which, in parts, follows

part of Cheshire’s Sandstone Trail. The Trail stretches

for 34 miles through Cheshire, it has been voted by

ITV viewers as one Britain’s Favourite Walks, and it’s

easy to see why. On the first half of the walk there are

a couple of flights of steep steps to navigate, which

are set in the sandstone cliffs, and some breath-taking

sheer drops, but you also need to be aware of lots of

protruding tree roots and random sandstone rocks.

Park up at the free car park off Simons Lane (WA6

6HQ) near Frodsham – look for the phone masts.

At the entrance to the car park turn left and follow

Simons Lane downhill until you see a bungalow

(Overhill) and turn left up the shared driveway/

footpath.

Follow the footpath right up to and over the

driveway to a care home (Heathercliffe), and carry

on down a wooded path downhill. Once you reach

Bellemonte Road, turn right and turn left when you

reach the Bellemonte pub.

Look out for the footpath sign on the right and

follow this down into a wooden area. You’re faced

with a fork almost immediately and you need to

bear left. You’ll pass a Frodsham Hill Wood sign

and straight after a fingerpost; head for Delamere/

Beeston and carry on in that direction on the ridge

of the wooden area, ignoring various turn offs

(including one uphill for the Sandstone Trail).

Tantalising glimpses of the Mersey coastline appear

through the trees as you follow the path, and

uninterrupted view are far and few between at this

time of year. Shortly after passing Alf and Grace’s

bench you’ll arrive at a fingerpost, go down the

wooden stairway and then you’ll come to a fork;

bear left if you want to clamber down some very


Lane

47

For those with the OS Maps

app on your desktop, mobile

or tablet, this walk is named:

JT-Sandstone-Trail

JT-Worsaw-Hill

Netherton

Overton

A56

Overton

Hill

P

Beacon Hill

Simons Lane

Fivecrosses

Woodhouses

Woodhouse

Hill

Higher Mickledale

Farm

Arboretum

Dobers

Manley Road

Newton

Cliff Farm

Bushells Lane

Kingswood


48

steep and large steps set in the sandstone cliffs or

carry straight on if you want to go the much safer

route and follow the path down two flights of metal

steps. Either way, you’ll arrive at another fingerpost

and you should follow the sign to Delamere.

A few yards further on you’ll cross a wooden bridge

and come to sign number 596, indicating you

need to climb up the steep cliff steps on the right

(towards Whitchurch). Once you’ll get to the top,

you’ll be by the 10th hole of Frodsham Golf Club.

Follow the path until you come to another bench,

this one dedicated to David Nicholls.

At this point the Sandstone Trail itself weaves uphill,

but instead carry on in the same direction until

the wood opens up somewhat, and look out for a

½ fingerpost sign; take a 90 degree left turn here

and, when you come to a ‘proper tree’ sign, bear left

uphill and when you arrive at the next fork, bear

right staying on somewhat level ground.

Once you arrive at the next fingerpost, take a

90-degree right turn and follow the Sandstone

Trail all the way downhill for over ½ mile until you

reach The Ridgeway Road. Turn left uphill for 150

yards and once you arrive at the Ridgeway Country

Holiday Park, look for the footpath opposite. Climb

up the steps of the footpath, then more steps

downhill and bear left when you reach a brook

follow the path parallel to the brook and cross the

wooden footbridge a little further on.


49

Take the path uphill and follow the path round the

edge of the woods, bearing left until you reach

Commonside. Cross over and, after a short climb

up the hill, you’re following a footpath on the edge

of more woodland. You’ll take a newly created

diversion round Austerson Old Hall and arrive at a

single-track road (Yarrangall Green), turn left and

then turn left again when you get to the main

Manley Road. Follow this busy-ish road uphill for

250 yards and then turn right down a track to Claim

Farm. Once you reach the dog-leg bend to the right,

take a 90-degree left turn, go through the gate and

head along the side of field.

Once you’ve crossed a track/gallops, bear right

slightly and follow the overgrown path round the

left-hand side of this field uphill towards a house

in the distance. Once you’ve reached the road,

cross and head up Bushells Lane until you reach a

staggered crossroads; turn left up Waterloo Lane.

At the end of Waterloo Lane, take a right turn. At the

back end of a slight right-hand bend, you’ll need to

take a track on the left and head up towards the

ridge. Once you reach the next crossroads, take a

left and follow the track past a covered reservoir

until you reach Manley Road. Turn right and look for

a gate built into the hedge approximately 250 yards

on the left-hand side.

Take the path which cuts diagonally through a field

until you reach the driveway to Higher Mickledale

Farm. Go straight across the driveway to another

path and follow in same direction all the way to

Simons Lane. Turn left and walk uphill; you’ll see

the car park from where you started the walk on the

right-hand side.

Please ensure you wear appropriate clothing and footwear

whilst walking. Whilst every care has been taken to ensure

that the walk is accurate, neither the publisher or its editorial

contributors can accept, and hereby disclaim, any liability to

any party to loss or damage caused by errors or omissions

resulting from negligence, accident or other cause.


50 Gardening

“It’s time... time to make

a change”

by Angie Barker

Do you remember that song “It’s Time” from the

early nineties by the Winans? (Hubby doesn’t.

But then he preferred Pat Boone to Elvis so its

hardly surprising). It came to mind the other

day when I was looking at our garden and

wondering whether I should change the shape

of our lawn. It has been a circular shape from

the start of the garden when we moved in

fourteen years ago and having the need to

replace a path running off it, I wondered if it

created an opportunity for a new approach.

It often happens in gardening that what

sometimes appears to be a disaster can actually lead

to something better. A case in point is Monty Don’s

treasured Box hedge falling subject to Box Blight, it

turned out to be a chance for him to turn his borders

into a space for grasses which he now loves.

Take a good look at your garden and assess what

is working well for you and what needs to go. Are

those old Lavender plants that have been there for

years now looking past their best? We think nothing

of updating our décor in the house, painting a room

a new colour for example so we should be more

open to the prospect of making changes in our

outdoor rooms. Just imagine the possibilities if that

overgrown Conifer hedge was removed to make

way for a new planting scheme filled with light and

colour. Imagine the wildlife you could attract into

your garden if you made part of your border into a

pond...

A great way to pick up ideas and view your garden

with fresh eyes is to visit other gardens. There are

lots of opportunities in our neck of the woods, from

group openings by local gardeners, to the National

Garden Scheme and RHS gardens and spring is the

perfect time to visit.

Another lyric from the song is “what we need is

a little bit of love” - a lovely sentiment and one

perhaps we should be applying to our gardens (and

Hubby of course).


Upvc Windows & Doors I Conservatories,

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cares and takes pride in what we do. We don’t employ pushy salesmen, but pride ourselves on working

with and listening to our customers to give them exactly what they want. We will treat you with respect

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51

Garden need a little

LTC?

• Tree Surgery

• Flagging & Fencing

• Landscaping & Design

• Garden Clearances

• Logs For Sale

Wood chipping & stump grinder services

Call Lloyd today for a free estimate

01942 367170 / 07900 738637

Cricket St, Wigan, WN6 7TP

www.ltcgroup.co.uk

SMN

Tree and Landscape Management

Tree Felling & Pruning

Site Clearance

Tree Surveys and Reports

Invasive Weed Control

Ground Maintenance

Agricultural & Domestic Fencing

Firewood & Woodchip

Woodland Maintenance

24 Hour Emergency Tree Work

West Lancashire Borough Council approved contractor

Wigan Council approved contractor

Day: 07970 521 692 Eve: 01942 214 121

www.smntrees.co.uk steve@smntrees.co.uk

Garden Machinery & Equipment

Sales, Service & Repair

Garden Tractors & Lawn Mowers

Chainsaws & Hedge Trimmers

Brush Cutters & Strimmers

Equipment Servicing & Sharpening

Pick-up & delivery service

Moss View, Nipe Lane, Nr Skelmersdale, WN8 9PY

01695 722999 & 07918 618126/7

Monday-Friday 8am-5pm, Saturday 9am-2pm

www.mowermen.co.uk

garden maintenance

weed control to lawn &

driveways

hedge cutting

garden tidy ups

Design & Print

Flyers, postcards, brochures

and distribution service.

For more information call

01744 649 722

LocalLife

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fertilising & moss control

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tree surgery

one off jobs or regular

maintenance

HND qualified. PA1 PA2 & PA6 spraying qualifications.

20 years experience. Billinge based.

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Tel: 07929 366769

Gel

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norma ly £20

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Lashes

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Sunbeds

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Natalies @ Studio 84

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52

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email: jthlandscaping@icloud.com

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53

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54 Motoring

Renault Grand

Scenic

Review

Multi-purpose vehicles, once about as electrifying

to look at as a soggy satsuma, are easier on the eye

these days. You could even say they’re desirable,

especially the current Renault Grand Scenic.

Inside the French-made machine, digital

instruments replace the conventional speedo that

the old model housed. There’s also a prominent

infotainment unit in the middle of the dashboard. If

you can operate an iPad – it’ll be like falling off a log

for you to use this. It all looks agreeably upmarket.

But it’s not all about appearances. Behind the latest

Grand Scenic’s stylish body and sporty 20-inch

alloy wheels, you have a car that offers a practical

transport solution for a family of seven. You never

have to worry about where to put stuff as there are

loads of oddment bins to keep coins, cans of drink –

and toys. Picnic tables in the rear fold-out – and feel

sturdy enough to put up with kids leaning on them

and eating their lunch on.

There are lots of trims to choose from, and I drove

the Iconic, which comes with front and rear parking

sensors; DAB radio; cruise control and hill start

assist.

On the road, the Grand Scenic is agile for a large

motor, and visibility is excellent. The car stays

relatively free from body roll and offers a firm

ride, but not an uncomfortable one. The five-door

Renault is planted at speed, and it feels secure. And

so it should, having achieved the top five-star safety

rating from crash test body, Euro NCAP.

The petrol version is the one to go for if you can.

My test model had the 1330cc 140ps unit fitted. It

gives just enough punch to make the car a good,

efficient commuter. Top speed is only 119mph, but

in a country besieged by safety cameras, is a fast car

even relevant anymore? Not really – what’s more


55

significant is the 40.9mpg the Grand Scenic can

achieve with this engine. On top of that, you’ve got

lowish CO2 emissions of 139g/km, meaning road

tax is relatively cheap.

As well as being transport for parents who haven’t

given up on what their car looks like yet, the Grand

Scenic offers a good seating set-up. In addition to

the usual five chairs, two more can be raised from

the cargo floor - making this a true seven-seater.

Furthermore, one-touch folding seats collapse

easily to give a flat floor. Oh, and this Renault is

one of the only cars in its class - if not the only one

- where you can activate this feature from inside the

load area. The Grand Scenic also offers 596 litres of

boot space when the five seats are up. And you still

have 233-litres of cargo capacity when all seven

seats are in use.

PCP or lease coming

to an end?

Call me now and save £000’s

SCUFFS/SCRATCHES MENDED

MINOR DENTS REPAIRED

ALLOY WHEEL REPAIRS

NO VAT CHARGED

We’ll beat any quote!

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Tel: 07803 053 715

e: cjvalet@yahoo.co.uk

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Treat your car

to the professional touch

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Services and repairs

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service Available

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www.cosmeticar.co.uk

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56 Home Services

Home Services

Convert your bath to a

Walk-In Shower

AJC

WALK IN SHOWERS

Fires & Stoves Swept

Certificates Issued

HETAS Approved Sweep

Professional & Reliable

Typical price

£1800

Fully guaranteed

One day installation

No mess - no fuss

Easy to clean & maintain

Call Anthony on

07919 876 825

Workshop address:

Bulldog Tools Ind. Est.

Darlington Street East

Wigan

WN1 3BT

We also fit full bathrooms!

www.bodtree.co.uk

H. TEBB & SON

French Polishers

& Upholsterers

of Distinction

• Domestic and

commercial work

welcome

• Free Pick Up and

Delivery

• Established in St.

Helens since 1946

• Free estimates

01744 23074

91 Shaw Street, St Helens, WA10 1EN

www.htebb.co.uk

COMPUTER PROBLEMS?

Broadband broken, computer slow

printer packed up, virus/spyware or

your keyboards gone kaput

Bodtree Systems fix all types of PC problems

in the comfort of your own home

Call Catherine Now 07540 222787

No Call Out Charges • Local Company • PC Experts

Tel: 01744 778381 - 01942 418763 - Mobile - 07540 222787


57

No job too small or tall

Call: 01942 273944 / 07872 176335

Email: dpconservatorycleaning@gmail.com

www.dpconservatorycleaning.co.uk

St Helens’ premier

domestic

cleaning service

Cleaning in the

St Helens area

for 10+ years

We only use reliable, vetted staff

• £11.95 per hour - minimum 2 hrs

• Same cleaner each visit

• All domestic duties provided

Call or email Joanne 01744 649091

joanne@acleanbreak.co.uk / www.acleanbreak.co.uk

• Professional Carpet - Rug - Upholstery Cleaning

• Leather Cleaning & Restoration

• FREE Pre-Inspection Visit & Quotation

helen@carrolls-cleaning.co.uk

T: 01942 409401

M: 07881 816839

UPVC CLEANING

• Windows, Fascias, Gutters etc.

CONSERVATORIES

• Exterior & Interior (Cleaning)

POWER WASHING

• Driveways & Patios etc.

ROOF CLEANING

• Moss Removal & Bio-Treatment

• Softwashing / Low Pressure

SPECIAL OFFER - 20% OFF

ALL CLEANING PACKAGES

Call Clint for a free no obligation quote.

01744 470 051 or 07834 241 642

www.justcleanpropertycare.co.uk

Providing professional carpet &

upholstery cleaning since 1993

Carpets Upholstery Curtains

Leather Oriental Rugs Hard Floors

For more information call:

01942 470 081

Visit our website and check out the testimonials.

www.alliancechemdry.co.uk


58

Over 60 walks

FREE to download at locallife247.co.uk

Brand New Bathrooms

Boiler + Central Heating

Installs, Servicing + Repairs

Extended warranties available

24 Hour Call-out

Domestic + Commercial

Freephone 0300 3030121

Dave 07769 942218 / Matt 07969 183809

21 Naburn Drive, Orrell, WN5 8SB

Email: info@orrellheating.co.uk

www.orrellheating.co.uk

FINANCE

OPTIONS

AVAILABLE

506515

Heating & Plumbing Services

• Boiler Installations & Repairs

• Servicing & Maintenance

• Gas Safety Certificates

• We’re on call 365 days a year – our

service & maintenance plans start

from just 41p per day!

Want to promote your

company in Local Life?

Call Sally: 01744 649 722

locallife247.co.uk

LocalLife

152642

64-80 Duke Street, St Helens, WA10 2JW

01744 22331

Bartons-heating.co.uk

Call-Outs

welcome

24/7

All aspects of Gas Heating & Plumbing

• Boilers

• Bathrooms

• Servicing

Installations, Upgrades & Maintenance

Established 30+ years ~ emergency call outs

Call Paul for advice and a free quote

07929 428 496

42-44 Rainford Road, Billinge

11672

FINANCE

AVAILABLE

ASK FOR DETAILS

ATB Plumbing & Heating

Boiler Installs, Repairs & Services

Fire & Cooker Installations

Bathrooms Fitted

System Flushes

Landlords Certifications 624630

LPG

Call Alec on

07730 735 174

rainford-boiler-tech.co.uk


59

CALL PAUL

LOCKSMITHS

ESTABLISHED 2000

• UPVC & WOODEN DOOR SPECIALIST

• Emergency Door Opening

• UPVC Door Lock Repairs

• UPVC Door Lock Changes

• UPVC Door Lock Upgrades

• Wood Door Lock Changes

• All Work Guaranteed

A Registered Insured NCFE Certified Company

Call Paul for a

Fast, Reliable, Professional Service

TELEPHONE

01744 526 589

MOBILE

07932 718 362

WWW.CALLPAULLOCKSMITH.CO.UK

KEYS LOCKS SAFES

• Repairs & Upgrades

on all locks, including UPVC

• Safes supplied & installed

• Key cutting service

• Emergency call outs welcomed

• All work guaranteed

Call your local lock expert for a free quote

Call us now on

01744 732 256

Established 1970

Visit our showroom: 2, Lingholme Road, St Helens, WA10 2NS

GARAGE DOOR

REPAIRS

ALL GARAGE DOORS REPAIRED :

Springs, Cables, Locks, Rollers etc.

Doors of all ages repaired

01744 894939 / 07891 330214 NO FIX, NO CHARGE!

www.garagedoorandlock.co.uk

Strawberry Cottage, Pimbo Road, Kings Moss WN8 9QL

Haydock

Decorators

• High Quality Decorating Over 20 years experience

• Neat & Tidy Workmanship Haydock Decorators

For a free quote & friendly advice contact Paul on 07596 956 030

A.J.Davies Est.1991

Painter & Decorator

Paper Hanging a Speciality

Friendly & Very Reliable Service

Both Domestic & Commercial

Trading for over 26 years

Call Adam on 01744 755 005

e-mail ajdaviesdecorator@hotmail.co.uk


60

ALPINE LTD

Roofing & Building Services

OAP

DISCOUNTS

SERVING

CHORLEY, WEST

LANCASHIRE &

WIGAN

Your local roofing company

from repairs to re-roofs,

fascia’s, soffits & gutters.

• Flat roof specialists

• Damp proof specialists

• Quality workmanship

• Affordable pricing

• Quick response to all repairs

FULLY INSURED

Tel: 01744 776880

Mob: 07730 351523

www.alpineroofingandbuildingltd.co.uk

Rainford Electrical

Electrical Installations & Repairs Est.1975

All aspects of domestic work undertaken

Lights, Sockets, Fuseboards etc

Electric Oven & Shower Repairs

P.A.T. Testing & Inspection

Small jobs a speciality

Call Alan Leigh on

01744 883883 or 07884 496434

DF Electrical Services

Domestic Commercial Industrial

• Rewires

• Consumer Unit Upgrades

• Outside Lighting

• Outside Sockets

• Alarms

• CCTV

Email: dfelectricalservices@outlook.com

Contact David Feely

Mob: 07961 641 826

Tel: 01257 367 386

PLC MAINTENANCE

MULTISKILLED HANDYMAN

Roofing & Roofline- repairs and replacement

Decorating, Building, Gates supplied & fitted

Plastering, Gardening

For all your home improvements - No job too small

07847 394040 ~ 01744 606938

01744 602931 or 07756 274503

7 Albany Avenue, Eccleston Park, L34 2QN

GDR Driveways

• Flagging • Block paving

• Indian Stone

www.gdrdriveways.com

Call Gareth for a FREE quotation

01942 217 113 | 07715 177 754

W.Hurst & Son Ltd

ELECTRIC CONTRACTOR

www.whurstandson.co.uk

• All types of electrical work

• 35+ years experience

• No job too small

• Friendly and reliable

All electrical work

undertaken from full

re-wires to alarms/CCTV.

www.hjselectricalservices.co.uk

For a free quote

& advice call Jeff

01695 622 191

07850 622 191

No job too small.

No call out charge

– guaranteed.

30 years experience.

Call Steve on

07809 427 508


61

We specialise in seamless aluminium gutters.

Clean, stylish and guaranteed for 25 years!

01942 735 515 / 07917 352 182 / 07917 352 183

www.orrellroofline.co.uk

Damp Control

State of the art diagnostic equipment

used to provide a comprehensive

assessment of your damp issues.

Free quote and advice provided

for any remedial works needed.

For a reliable, friendly

service call Matthew on

07840 096 233

Matthew Rigby

Property Services

Damp Control Specialists

Facias, soffits, cladding,

dry verge and gutters - call us now

for all your roofline requirements!

• WILSON BROS •

Est. 1985

Roofing & Roofline Specialists

• All aspects of maintenance & repair

• Fascia & soffit installation

• Guttering and felting services

Call us now for a free estimate

01695 633173

Colin: 07958 302 166

Brian: 07760 160 988

www.wilson-bros.co.uk

Our Focus Is

Quality & Price

LOCAL FAMILY

FIRM

All aspects

of Building &

Roofing UPVC

Rooflines

References Available

From a Loose

Slate to a

Complete

Construction

Extensions &

Alterations Specialists

Call us on... 01744 600074

Mobile: 07867 592460

13 Hawes Ave, Carr Mill, WA11 7EA

Do you have

Failed Double

Glazing Units?

Don’t pay £££’s to replace the frame,

we’ll replace the glass panes.

We also replace; Window locks,

Door locks, Hinges & Handles.

...and we do conservatory repairs.

Call us now for a free quotation on

01744 810 000

www.northwestwindowrepairs.co.uk


62

Puzzle Solutions

CROSSWORD

ACROSS: 1. Embrocation, 9. Rancour, 10. Rhine, 11. Shin, 12. Pedigree, 14. In-law, 15. David, 20. Internet, 22. Coma,

24. Tsars, 25. Narrate, 26. Haberdasher.

DOWN: 2. Mansion, 3. Riot, 4. Cartel, 5. Terminal, 6. Osier, 7. Press, 8. Newel, 13. Lacrosse, 16. Iron Age, 17. Sixty,

18. Pernod, 19. Babel, 21. Tiara, 23. Arms.

WORDSEARCH

SUDOKU

WIGGLE

WORDS

Every Penny Counts

NUMBER

BLOCK

1

5 7

4 2

3 2

18 14 13 18

20

11

23

17

12

10

Local Life is published every month and distributed into the following

areas on an alternate monthly basis.

This issue is delivered to over 11,250 private homes and businesses in Rainford, Billinge,

Garswood, Moss Bank, Haresfinch, Carr Mill and selected areas of Haydock.

The next issue is delivered to over 14,500 private homes and businesses in Rainhill, Eccleston,

Sutton, Eccleston Park, Windle, Grange Park, Nutgrove, New Bold and Waterside Village.

Did you know that we can send you a link to

the latest Local Life magazine every month?

Visit our website www.locallife247.co.uk to sign up to receive

your monthly online magazine - the sign up section is situated at

the base of the Home page.

Keep in touch with the

LocalLife Team!

Want to

promote your

business in

LocalLife?

locallifemagazine247@locallifemedia

Read all our magazines online at

locallife247.co.uk

01744 649 722

www.locallife247.co.uk


63


Tomorrow’s Home Improvements Today!

Quality ~ Choice ~ Value

Windows

Bi-Fold Doors

Thermally-efficient conservatory roofs

expertly fitted by accredited installers

©

Orangeries

Don’t just lock it,

Rock it!

Conservatories

Manufacturers and installers since 2004

Contact us on 01744 891717 for a no obligation quote

Visit our showroom/factory at; Crows Nest, Ashton Road, Billinge, WN5 7XX (near Windy Arbour crossroads)

www.orrellwindows.co.uk

28544

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