New Forest Living Sep - Oct 2021

minervapublications

As the Autumn nights draw in our thoughts turn to delicious cosseting food, home comforts and setting affairs in order. Plus we interview baker Richard Bertinet and garden designer Adam Frost.

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Contents

A Note

from the EDITOR

17

Delicious

A Culinary Journey through

Northern Ireland

comfort food recipes

“There is something so special

in the early leaves drifting

from the trees–as if we are all

to be allowed a chance to peel,

to refresh, to start again.”

– Ruth Ahmed

There is something so special about

this time of year - it has a grounding

effect which forces us to consider

the passage of time and the tangible

changes around us. As the hues

of the trees shape our landscape,

we settle down into the embrace

of those cooler, darker evenings

- a sense of quietude before the

inevitable Christmas rush begins.

Garden Designer

Adam Frost

34

We hope this edition makes a good

companion to a cosy evening or

a peaceful morning with a cuppa.

We’ve filled it with interviews with

some titans of their fields - firstly, west

country expert baker (via France!)

Richard Bertinet and Chelsea seventime

gold medal winning garden

designer Adam Frost.

Our interview with

Richard Bertinet

20

Editor Katie Thomson

e katie.thomson@minervapublications.co.uk

Publisher Sally Thomson

Pre-Press Manager Kate Norris

Contributors Rebecca Rose, Peter Thomson, Sue Cooke, Matthew Biggs

Angela Cave and Pete Lawrence. Front cover courtesy of Waitrose

Key Account Manager Angela Cave

e angela.cave@minervapublications.co.uk

d/l 01225 984498

twitter: @NFLivingMag

40

Planning for a

happy retirement

MINERVA PUBLICATIONS HQ

Paxcroft Farm, Hilperton

Trowbridge BA14 6JB

t 01225 984 550

visit our website www.minervamagazines.co.uk

Disclaimer: The publishers shall not be held liable for any loss occasioned by failure of an

advertisement to appear, or any damage or inconvenience caused by errors, omissions and

misprints. No part of this publication may be reproduced without prior permission from the

publishers. The opinions expressed within are not necessarily those of the publishers.

These lovely chats fall alongside

some delicious recipes and some

inspiration for the home and garden

- plus some advice on getting those

finances in order for retirement -

it’s never too early to start thinking

about it, nor to late to make an

assessment of where you are.

It wouldn’t be right to have an

edition without one of our most

popular pages - the competitions!

You can enter all the ones listed on

the page, plus some web-exclusives

at minervamagazines.co.uk - you

can also opt into being the first to

hear about new giveaways when

they are launched.

We are looking forward to seeing

you again in November, where we

will be unapologetically thrusting

you into the Christmas swing. Don’t

say I didn’t warn you! Until then,

take care and enjoy this issue.

Katie

Katie

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 3


ONE OF THE WORLD’S LARGEST

MOTORBIKE MUSEUMS

Come

and see

our CRAFT

AND GIFT

SHOPS!

Sammy Miller Museum, Bashley Cross Roads, New Milton, Hampshire, BH25 5SZ

CALL US ON 01425 620777 (Museum) and 01425 616644 (Workshop)

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Love

the beach

on your

doorstep

Love a moment

shared together

Claim your

2-for-1

hot drink with

this advert*

#LoveLepe

*Hand in this advert to receive 2-for-1 on regular hot drinks in our café. Any additional syrups,

coffee shots, toppings and milk alternatives that do not come as standard will be charged at their

usual price. This offer cannot be exchanged for cash or used with any other offer, promotion,

discount or loyalty card. Voucher can only be redeemed once. Photocopies and web copies not

accepted. Expires 28 Feb 2022.

Love The Lookout

4 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


COMPETITION

Time

WIN

A a two-night stay

for two people at

Whittlebury Park

WORTH

£338

To enter any (or all!) of our competitions, head to

www.minervamagazines.co.uk/competitions.

Find the competition and enter on that post,

using the appropriate keyword.

T&C’s apply and no cash alternatives available. Winners chosen at

random - entries made after closing date will not be accepted.

Whittlebury Park, a four-star countryside hotel in

Northamptonshire, is nestled in hundreds of acres of tranquil

ancient parkland, making it the perfect destination to get away

from it all. It’s surrounded by a host of local attractions, from

lakeside walks at Stowe Gardens to designer retail therapy

at Bicester Village and thrilling history at the Silverstone

Experience Museum.

Terms and conditions: The prize is for a winner plus one guest. Prize

winner and guest must be aged 18 and over. Only one winner will be

drawn. The prize is non-transferable, non-refundable, non-exchangeable

and there are no cash alternatives. Cannot be used in conjunction with

any other offer or promotion. The prize is available Friday – Sunday. Valid

until 31 December 2021 excluding, Christmas Day, New Year’s Eve and

Bank Holiday Mondays. Full terms and conditions available on website.

whittlebury.com

Closes 10/11/2021 - Competition keyword ‘WHITTLEBURY’

WIN We are giving one

lucky reader the

The Ultimate chance to win

baby Starter the Ultimate

Pack! Starter Pack

from Kit & Kin,

the eco-friendly

brand co-founded by

Emma Bunton. Offering an

unbeatable bundle of ethical

baby essentials, the beautiful

collection of products is

bursting with everything a

new parent needs, night and

day, including the brand’s Eco Nappies, Biodegradable Wipes

and Nappy Sacks. The standout set also contains the heroes from

Kit & Kin’s range of 100% organic cotton babywear, including the

adorable Bunny Hat and super soft Alphabet All-in-One, as well as

a luxuriously snuggly Knitted Blanket and Sleeping Bag, to ensure

everyone gets the best ZZZ’s, naturally!

kitandkin.com

Closes 10/11/2021 - Competition keyword ‘BABYWEAR’

Ramekins & Wine offer

immersive dining

experiences where

the wine takes

centre-stage, the

food is designed to

showcase its character

and deliver a true taste

sensation. We are giving readers

the chance to win a Home

Tasting Box for two people

which includes six specially

selected wines and perfectly

matched ramekins of food.

T’s and C’s: Three lucky winners

will enjoy a Home Tasting Box

for two people.

ramekinsandwine.co.uk

Closes 10/11/2021 - Competition

keyword ‘RAMEKINS’

WIN

A Home

Tasting Box

for two!

Lifestyle and homewares brand

Haus have just launched a

beautiful new textiles

collection called

Modern Vintage –

centred around

hand-embroidered

and loomed fabrics

from Thailand, India

and Japan.

The collection features

some exquisite vintage fabrics,

all with a focus on fine detail

and a balanced, neutral palette

– customers can mix and match

pieces with confidence as all are

tonally compatible.

We have 5 x £50 vouchers to

give away to be used on the

website www.hauslife.co.uk.

T&C’s and exclusions apply.

Closes 10/11/2021 - Competition

keyword ‘MODERN VINTAGE’

5x

£50

vouchers to

be won!

Leading flowers and

gifts delivery service,

Floward, is delighted

to offer 8 lucky readers

the chance to win an

arrangement from its

new letterbox collection.

WIN

A beautiful flower

arrangement from

Floward’s new

collection

Established in 2017 by CEO

Abdulaziz B. al-Loughani,

Floward is a full-fledged

e-commerce solution that

offers prime fresh-cut flowers

sources from the best growers

and farmers around the world

which are arranged locally by an expert team of florists and

designers. Following a successful launch into London at the

start of the year, Floward is expanding its distribution across

the country, to offer a next day delivery service which allows

customers to place orders by 12pm and guarantees that their

flower arrangements will arrive the next day. What’s more, as

part of Floward’s worldwide CSR programme, 1% of all annual

revenue generated by sales will be donated to the Mental Health

Foundation.

floward.com

Closes 10/11/2021 - Competition keyword ‘FLOWARD’

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 5


ADVERTISING FEATURE

New "Arboro Lounge" opening

in Ringwood

We are delighted to announce that the popular Lounges brand

is opening a stunning Café & Bar at The Furlong shopping

centre in Ringwood this October.

This Furlong shopping centre, situated in

the historic market town of Ringwood, is

an award-winning shopping destination

attracting both locals and holiday makers.

This premium outdoor shopping

centre is already host to big name

brands, independent stores and

cafés, all conveniently nestled around

a picturesque courtyard. The centre

regularly bustles with live music, markets

and community events.

This new café/bar, set across two floors

and with generous outdoor seating in the

Furlong courtyard; will combine elements

of a restaurant, British pub and coffee

shop culture.

For some it will be a cosy place to go for

a coffee after the school run; for others

it is a place to catch up with friends;

an atmospheric table for a business

brunch, a place for an informal meal, a

celebration or a much needed night out

with cocktails!

The new “Arboro Lounge” in Ringwood

will offer all-day dining, with a full menu

served from 9am to 10pm, everyday. No

two Lounges are the same, so we are

looking forward to seeing the unique

and informal interior fit out for this prime

location.

A selection of stores at The Furlong

include Waitrose, Joules, Hobbs,

Whistles, Crew Clothing, Boston Tea

Party, COOK, Waterstones, Osprey

London, Caffe Nero, Phase Eight and

more.

With free parking for all (for 2 hours), why

not come down and experience what The

Furlong has to offer?

Directions: located just off the A31 and

follow the signs to the free Furlong car

park.

For more details on all the stores, latest

offers and events visit

www.thefurlong.co.uk

6 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


VISIT RINGWOOD’S AWARD-WINNING

SHOPPING HAVEN

Discover the New Forest’s best shopping secret.

With big brands, independent boutiques and charming cafès; all nestled around a

picturesque courtyard, it’s easy to see why The Furlong has won both the Gold and

the Silver awards for the Best Shopping Destination on the south coast.

Find us just off the A31, Ringwood.

With monthly Farmers’ Markets in Ringwood; as well as live music

performances and Antique & Decorative Arts fayres in the Furlong courtyard,

visit thefurlong.co.uk for full details of events happening this month.

OPENING OCTOBER

GET BEHIND THE SCENES WITH US ON ANY OF

OUR SOCIAL CHANNELS @FURLONGCENTRE

FREE PARKING

FOR 2 HOURS

OPEN 7

DAYS A WEEK


Girls’ schools today

Donna Stevens, chief executive of the Girls’ Schools Association, on the reality of girls’ schools today

Girls’ schools are very much alive and well

and a thriving part of the UK’s education

provision. But don’t just take my word for

it - take a look at the evidence and visit your

local girls’ school.

Around half a million secondary school

aged children are educated in single-sex

schools in England, a significant proportion

of all school aged children. What is perhaps

more interesting is that the majority are

in girls’ schools, meaning co-ed schools

typically have more boys than girls.

What this means in practice is that girls’

schools, and the benefits they bring,

attract significant numbers of girls and

their parents. I know from talking to head

teachers that parents who set aside any

lingering assumptions to visit their local

girls’ school are frequently bowled over by

the contemporary, lively and highly relevant

education that’s on offer.

Girls-only schools provide freedom from

gender stereotypes, where girls can grow

into themselves without feeling under

8 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk

pressure to conform to gender-weighted

expectations. New research+ has shown

that girls in girls’ schools are also more

confident and emotionally in control - these

are environments which enable girls to grow

in confidence so that, when it’s time, they

are better placed to take on the demands of

the adult world.

Academically, data from the Department

for Education shows that pupils in girls’

schools perform better at both key stages

4 and 5, which equates to GCSE and A

Level in the English school system. In girls’

schools there is no such thing as a girls’

subject or a boys’ subject and girls are

free to follow their inclinations with little

of the pressure they might otherwise feel.

The results are evident, with girls’ school

students significantly more likely to study

STEM (science, technology, engineering &

maths) subjects – nearly three times more

likely for physics and further maths and

almost twice as likely for computer science.

On average, girls in girls’ schools also

achieve almost a grade higher at A Level

than girls who attend co-ed schools.

Girls’ school students are more likely to take

up sport, which isn’t surprising when you

consider that, with only girls in the gym and

on the sports field, their physical confidence

has space to grow. Every girl has every

opportunity to become a leader, a form

captain, a Head of House. They learn not

just how to shoulder responsibility, but also

how to take risks, inspire and lead others.

Our schools see the fruits of this all the

time. Students win awards and go on

to become confident, high achievers in

business, the arts, academia, and sport.

Among our alumnae our Economist editorin-chief

Zanny Minton-Beddoes, actress

and activist Emma Watson, Everyone’s

Invited activist Soma Sara, anthropologist

and TV presenter Professor Alice Roberts,

award-winning astrophysicist Dame Jocelyn

Bell Burnell, Olympic champions Alex

Danson MBE and Helen Glover MBE, and

Paralympic gold medallist Ellie Robinson

MBE.

The school you choose for your daughter

has to feel right. We are fortunate, in the UK,

to have an excellent choice of schools of all

shapes, sizes and locations. The fact that

girls’ schools continue to thrive in such a

diverse environment is an indication of their

great strength and expertise in giving girls a

highly relevant, 21st century education.

Main image: Withington Girls’ School

Bottom left: St James School

Below right: Norwich High School for

Girls


Together we

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ADVERTISING FEATURE

MEET THE HEAD

With a new and

challenging

academic year

underway we had a

chat to Mike Stanley

who has recently

taken over as Head

at Forres Sandle

Manor...

Are you excited to be taking on the

reins of the school?

I am extremely excited about starting

as the new Headmaster of FSM, but

more than anything, I feel very privileged

and honoured to have been appointed.

Having grown up in a family of teachers,

I totally understand that schools play a

key role in moulding the next generation,

and our job as teachers is to serve the

children in our care and help them follow

their dreams. All children are stars, and

we need to help them shine. FSM is a

fantastic school in a stunning setting

with a dedicated and loyal set of staff,

and I can’t wait to start and set about

articulating my vision for the future.

This has been a year like no other,

what would you like the children to

gain from the experience?

2020 – 2021 has been a challenging year

for all of us worldwide, and we must

never forget that everyone has been

on their own individual journey. Many

have suffered a great deal, and most

children have found their experience

of lockdown and remote learning

extremely difficult, and there have been

several important lessons for them to

learn. Remote learning has increased

their independence and enhanced

their creativity and, in some cases, has

improved their resilience to bounce back

from adversity, while Google classrooms

and Teams and Zoom chats have

become part of the norm. But for me,

the two most important lessons from the

last year and a half are not to take things

for granted because there are so many

people around the world who are in a

worse position than us. And secondly,

not to underestimate the power of human

interaction. Children have missed their

friends and the bonds they have created

with their teachers. From all the children

I have spoken to, they have learnt that

valuing these relationships has been the

most crucial thing they have taken away

from this experience.

What would you like pupils to say

about you when they are your age?

This is an easy one for me and can be

summed up in three words:

• Kind

• Inspirational

• Fun

These reflect my personality and

values and how I would like children

to remember me in 30 years time. It is

not the lessons we remember but the

teachers who inspire and care for us.

I love this quote I saw recently, which

reflects this, and it is how I would like our

children to remember their FSM teachers.

“Children don’t need a perfect teacher;

they need a happy teacher who is going

to make them excited to come to school

and gain a love of learning for the future.”

Children need teachers who believe in

them.

What are your ambitions for

the school?

First and foremost, at FSM, we will

champion every child. We will help them

become a kind, thoughtful and respectful

citizen who looks forward and outwards

and will positively contribute to society.

The relationships between the staff and

the children are critical to this, and these

strong values need to be modelled by

the whole school community. I would

also like us to become a school that

truly embeds 21st-century skills such

as entrepreneurialism, adaptability and

creativity, and we will follow a curriculum

that teaches these key skills. Most

importantly, we will be a school that

instils in our children an inner strength

to tackle the complicated modern world

they belong to. Understanding how to

use social media sensibly and safely,

dealing with different elements of peer

pressure and learning to look after their

wellbeing is more critical than ever

right now. With a stunning New Forest

setting like ours, we will draw upon our

natural environment, including animals,

outdoor learning, trees and plants – all of

which can help children stay healthy and

balanced and make every day an exciting

adventure. We will shout about FSM

from the treetops as the school embarks

on a new dawn, and it will no longer

be a hidden gem within the Forest but

a school that truly puts the child at the

centre of everything we do.

10 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


'a nurturing home-from-home

environment with loads of

outdoor learning and the

opportunity to try out new

things'

BOOK YOUR TOUR TODAY

CALL 01425 653181

www.fsmschool.com

Embracing

Ambition

INDEPENDENT DAY & BOARDING SCHOOL

FOR BOYS & GIRLS AGED 2 - 18

Where boys and girls fulfil their

academic ambitions to achieve their

personal best, develop belief

in themselves and compassion

for those around them.

OPEN EVENTS

To speak to our Admissions team or to book

to attend an event please call 01794 512206

or email admissions@embley.org.uk

W HOLE SCHOOL OPEN MORNINGS

23 rd , 24 th & 25 th September

14 th October

16 th November

SIXTH FORM OPEN EVENING

4 th November

Embley Park, Romsey, Hampshire, SO51 6ZE

www.embley.org.uk

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 11


'Together we achieve

the extraordinary'

A statement which has never rang more true – and

as we emerge from the last 18 months of uncertainty,

the importance of our Bournemouth Collegiate School

(BCS) motto is undeniable. Whilst the pandemic

bought with it many challenges, the commitment of

staff and resilience of pupils means we have so much

to be proud of...

The ongoing investment throughout this time into individual

technology, educational facilities, enrichment opportunities, and

pastoral care means that BCS will continue to grow, develop and

thrive over the following months and years.

Only recently we were shortlisted for Co-educational School of

the Year in the national Independent School Awards, an accolade

we’re immensely proud of, which truly shows how far the school

has come in the last 18 months.

But why should you consider BCS as the right school for your

son or daughter?

There are many reasons – not least the exceptional academic

results, with value-added at GCSE and A Level considered

some of the best in the country. We achieve this by using having

small classes, (averaging 14 at GCSE and six at A Level) and an

almost unlimited supply of extra support, plus, the co-curricular

programme is second to none in the breadth and depth it offers.

Add to this the intimate and nurturing environment, presence

of strong relationships, and focus on honesty, kindness and

integrity, we strive to bring the best out in everyone; supporting

pupils in maximising and realising their individual potential, both

academically and personally.

Our excellent results open doors and provide brilliant

opportunities - over 95% of students have secured a place in

their first-choice universities - but the outstanding education at

BCS is also holistic at its heart. We believe every young person

should be equipped with the character and skills they need to

make the most of their abilities. Above all else, BSC is a happy

school where we value, respect and fully support every pupil, as

they undertake their journey onto adulthood.

We are well connected too – our minibus network covers

everywhere from Sandbanks to Wimborne, Westbourne to

Verwood and many other key locations in the Dorset area; plus,

we have recently introduced a brand-new route covering the

New Forest – notably Lyndhurst, Burley, Bransgore, Winkton and

Christchurch.

As we look forward to the start of next academic year, interest

in the school has never been higher – places in many year

groups are already limited, so please do get in touch with Kelly

Rumbelow in our Admissions team to find out more.

Tel: 01202 436550

Email: Kelly.Rumbelow@bcschool.co.uk

ADVERTISING FEATURE

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TALK TO US ABOUT SCHOLARSHIPS & BURSARIES

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12 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


23 children in our region

have an uncertain future

Sadly they didn’t get the start in life they deserved.

Could you adopt and change their lives forever?

For most people, being part of a family

is something they can rely on from birth.

Unfortunately, there are children across

Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Portsmouth and

Southampton, who are unable to live with

their birth parents, and who are instead cared

for by kind and compassionate foster carers.

Lilly is just three and loves playing with her

dolls. Siblings Oliver, aged five years and Theo

who is nearly three, enjoy going to the local

park, or like to play with their toy cars endlessly.

They are just some of the children waiting for

a permanent family life.

Today, there are all types of wonderful families

from different backgrounds and circumstances

who support one or more children to feel

included, safe and loved forever. Some families

have single parents, while others are couples

who are heterosexual, same sex or gender

fluid. Ethnicity, religion, or culture, these

differences don’t matter – what matters is that

a child is loved and supported to feel safe and

respected.

child thrive in a forever home. Kirsty adopted

an older child, and says it’s the best thing she’s

ever done.

I’m so pleased about adoption

I actually encourage other

friends... you need to go and

do that. Do it. For me it’s

been wonderful.”

Mike and Natalie both felt very strongly that

they could offer a family life to a brother and

sister who might otherwise stay in the care

system for a long time. “Young siblings have a

strong bond together but need to be wrapped

in the cushion of being loved and cherished by

one or more parent. We knew that separating

siblings from one another can have long term

effects on children.”

Adopt South is seeking more mums and dads

who can give children a shared life together.

School teacher Kirsty knew about the high

numbers of black children who were waiting

in foster care and felt that with a bit of learning

and support she could be a mum and help a

Families who adopt two children or more,

or adopt a child with additional needs, may

also get additional financial support through

Adopt South.

*Children with Placement Orders as of 5th July 2021

If you’ve been thinking about adoption

and the children waiting, contact us today

0300 3000 011 • adoptsouth.org.uk

The Regional Adoption Agency for Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Portsmouth and Southampton Local Authorities


An enriching life like no other

Which school should my child attend?

Choosing the right educational

environment for your child is one of

the most important decisions you’ll

ever have to make as a parent. But if

you’re looking for a boarding school

for your child, how do you choose

the right one? Robin Fletcher, CEO

of the Boarding Schools’ Association

(BSA), explains.

‘How do I choose the right boarding school

for my child?’ That’s a question we’re asked

more often than any other at BSA. And

when you consider the UK boarding market

is one of the largest in the world, with more

than 450 schools of all sizes and types, in

all sorts of different locations, there isn’t a

straightforward answer.

But having such a wide range of choice can

really work to your advantage. If you know

exactly what to look for in a prospective

boarding school, your child will enjoy a

first-class education and gain invaluable life

skills, boost their confidence, become more

independent, and have the best possible

preparation for adult life.

The first key piece of advice I would always

offer when choosing a school is that it must

be a joint decision between you and your

child: they have to be happy with the final

choice.

As I’ve mentioned, one thing there isn’t a

shortage of in the UK boarding sector is

choice. You need to think about the best

location for your child: will they be best

suited to a large school attended by several

hundred students, or a smaller school

with fewer pupils? Would a school in the

middle of a city be better for them, or would

they prefer somewhere more rural? Would

they be best suited to a single sex or coeducational

school? Also, will full boarding

be the best option for them? Schools can

offer full, weekly or flexi-boarding, so you’ll

need to decide which works best for you

and your child. And is an academic school

right for them, or one that focuses perhaps

more on sport, music or more vocational

subjects?

Once you’ve considered all those factors

and you’ve got a shortlist of schools you’re

interested in, I’d always strongly encourage

you to visit those schools in person. This

is the best way to tell if it’s right for your

child or not, as it will be clear very quickly

whether they are comfortable there.

Making that final choice of the right

boarding school for your child can be a

lengthy process, but taking the time to get

your decision absolutely right is crucial.

Boarding will not suit every child or family

- but for the right child, in the right school,

it can offer an enriching life experience like

no other.

For further information about the Boarding

Schools’ Association, or to search for a

boarding school, please visit www.boarding.

org.uk. In 2020, BSA also teamed up with

Bulldog Publishing to launch Schoolplaces.

org, a dedicated live information resource

for schools, parents and education agents.

For more information, please visit www.

schoolplaces.org.

Image: Courtesy of Highfield and

Brookham Schools

14 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


OPEN EVENING

1st October 2021

6.00 - 8.30pm

registrar@kes.hants.sch.uk

www.kes.hants.sch.uk


Students at King

Edward VI School,

Southampton, enjoy end

of term extravaganza.

The academic year of 2020 was a turbulent

one, with periods of remote learning, bubbles,

one-way systems, cancelled events and

the last-minute announcement of teacher

assessed grades.

King Edward VI School, a co-educational school in the heart

of Southampton, planned a jam-packed final term to thank

students for abiding by the many and changing COVID rules and

to provide students with a safe environment in which they could

learn, have fun and try something new.

For GCSE and A Level cohorts, KES put on an Activities Week.

Students were able to sign up to as many events as they could

fit in over the course of the week, from learning the art of making

jewellery with resin, building a computer game from scratch,

challenging stereotypes during feminism workshops, sailing,

climbing the cliff faces of Swanage and much more.

The remaining student body were invited to a Science and

Technology Festival, which spanned three school days. Every

aspect of Science and Technology was investigated, questioned

and tested through workshops, demonstrations and activities.

Students were able to design and build aerodynamic cars (which

they then raced!), learnt about the biology of animals through

ADVERTISING FEATURE

holding and seeing real life reptiles and delve into the many

career options within science and technology industries.

Quick on the tail of the festival, the school’s annual Endeavour

programme kicked off. Across two days, students could be found

at various locations across the county enjoying different pursuits.

With the absence of trips throughout the year, the enjoyment and

excitement from students was unparalleled. Students went up

to Bristol for surfing at The Wave, climbed in the Peak District,

enjoyed watersports in Poole, cookery at the school’s prep

school, Stroud School, or took part in a school-run ‘Dragons’

Apprentice’ themed challenge.

King Edward VI School is an academically selective school in

Hampshire, with its core focus on seeing its students flourish in all

aspects of their lives. The school places high importance on providing

students with an abundance of opportunities and experience

throughout their time at King Edward’s. For more information about

the school, and Sixth Form, visit www.kes.hants.sch.uk.

GIVE A GIFT that means a little more

sustainable, wellness-based gift boxes - customisable and beautiful, from £10

available from hauslife.co.uk

16 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


COMFORT

When the darker nights set in, you

just want some go-to comfort food

recipes - and here, Waitrose has

delivered! Find more recipes at

www.waitrose.com

Calling

CHICKEN SHAWARMA

FLATBREADS WITH

YOGURT

Prep time: 20 minutes + marinating

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS

8 British chicken thigh fillets

3 tbsp Cooks’ Ingredients Shawarma

Paste

½ red onion, finely sliced

2 lemons, juice of 1, 1 cut into wedges

1½ tsp Cooks’ Ingredients Sumac

½ large cucumber

250g Yeo Valley Organic Greek Style

Natural Yogurt

1 small clove garlic, finely grated

15 mint leaves, finely shredded, plus extra

to garnish

4 Waitrose & Partners Hand-Stretched

Flatbreads

50g pomegranate seeds

1-2 handfuls wild rocket

METHOD

Slash each chicken thigh a few times,

concentrating on the thicker parts of the

fillet. Season, then rub all over with the

shawarma paste. Cover and chill for 20

minutes (up to 2 hours). Meanwhile, mix

the onion, lemon juice and sumac with a

good pinch of salt. Set aside until ready

to serve.

To make the sauce, coarsely grate the

cucumber and put in a sieve. Toss with a

pinch of salt and leave over a bowl for 10

minutes to drain, then gently press with a

wooden spoon to extract as much liquid

as possible. Tip into a bowl and stir in the

yogurt, garlic and mint.

Heat a griddle pan over a high heat. Cook

the chicken for 5-8 minutes on each side

(depending on the fillets’ size) until the

juices run clear and there is no pink meat,

then set aside for 2 minutes. Clean the

pan then use it to griddle the flatbreads

for 30 seconds on each side. Arrange

them on plates and top with the chicken,

pickled onion, pomegranate, rocket and

the cucumber and yogurt sauce, finishing

with the extra mint leaves and lemon

wedges for squeezing over.

COOK’S TIP

This recipe also works well with lamb or

pork steaks instead of chicken (adjust

cooking times accordingly).

COTTAGE PIE WITH

SWEET POTATO

Prep time: 20 minutes plus standing

Cooking time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS

1 tbsp olive oil

500g British beef mince

1 onion, diced

1 stalk celery, diced

1 carrot, peeled and diced

1 Oxo Beef stock cube

1 tbsp tomato purée

1½ tbsp plain flour

2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

3 thyme sprigs

2 medium sweet potatoes, peeled

1 tbsp unsalted butter

METHOD

Heat ½ tbsp oil in a large sauté pan or

casserole dish over a high heat. Add

the beef and fry, breaking it up, for 4-5

minutes, until browned. Remove from the

pan, add the remaining 1⁄2 tbsp oil, lower

the heat to medium and fry the onion,

celery and carrot with a pinch of salt for

10 minutes, until softened. Meanwhile,

dissolve the beef stock cube in 500ml

just-boiled water.

Return the beef to the pan, add the

tomato purée and cook for 1 minute, then

stir in the flour and fry for 1 minute more.

Add the stock, Worcestershire sauce and

2 thyme sprigs and simmer for 25-30

minutes, until the beef is coated in a thick

gravy. Meanwhile, slice the potatoes

as thinly as you can and put in a bowl.

Cover with just-boiled water from the

kettle; set aside for 10 minutes. Drain and

use kitchen paper to pat dry thoroughly,

then lay out on more kitchen paper to

finish drying.

Preheat the oven to 200°C, gas mark 6.

Melt the butter. Tip the beef and gravy

into a medium ovenproof dish. Toss the

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 17


potatoes with the butter and leaves from

the remaining thyme sprig. Season and

arrange in circles over the beef. Bake for

30 minutes until bubbling hot and the

potatoes are cooked through. Stand for

10 minutes before serving.

COOK’S TIP

Scatter grated cheddar over the potatoes

halfway through baking to give the pie a

nice cheesy crust.

CHEWY BROWN SUGAR

COOKIES

Prep time: 15 minutes plus chilling

Cooking time: 20 minutes

Makes: 12 - 14

INGREDIENTS

200g unsalted butter, roughly chopped

300g Billington’s Dark Brown Soft Natural

Unrefined Cane Sugar

300g plain flour

1 tsp baking powder

½ tsp bicarbonate of soda

½ tsp ground cinnamon

½ tsp fine salt

1 large British Blacktail Free Range Egg

1 tsp vanilla bean paste

METHOD

Put the butter and sugar in a large

saucepan and set over a medium heat.

Heat gently, stirring occasionally, until

the butter has melted and the sugar has

dissolved. Set aside off the heat for 5

minutes to cool. Meanwhile, mix the flour,

baking powder, bicarbonate of soda,

cinnamon and salt in a bowl.

With a wooden spoon, beat the egg

and vanilla into the butter-sugar mix,

then beat in the dry ingredients until

completely combined. Transfer to a bowl,

cover with a plate and chill for at least 2

hours (up to 24 hours).

Preheat the oven to 180°C, gas mark 4;

line 2 large baking trays with parchment.

Leave the cookie dough out of the fridge

for 15 minutes to warm up a little. Roll

into 12-14 balls (about 65-70g each)

and space out well on the baking trays

(the cookies spread quite a lot during

cooking, so bake in more than 2 batches

if needed). Bake for about 15 minutes,

turning the trays halfway if needed, until

deep golden and cracked on top. Cool

for 5 minutes on the trays, then transfer

to a wire rack to cool completely.

COOK’S TIP

Ovens can vary in temperature, so after

about 12 minutes, keep an eye on your

cookies. Once they look set and golden

at the edges and start to crack on top,

they’re ready.

CHERRY & ALMOND

BRIOCHE FRENCH

TOAST

Prep time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 30 minutes

Serves: 4

INGREDIENTS

425g can black cherries in light syrup

3 tsp Tate & Lyle Fairtrade Cane Icing

Sugar, plus extra for dusting

1 medium British Blacktail Free Range

Egg

250ml whole milk

½ tsp almond extract

8 slices sliced brioche loaf

2 tbsp unsalted butter

150g pot vanilla yogurt

1 tbsp toasted flaked almonds

METHOD

Put a sieve over a small saucepan and

drain the cherries. Set the cherries aside

and simmer the juices for 5 minutes until

reduced. Add 1 tsp icing sugar and the

drained cherries to the saucepan and

simmer for another 5 minutes, until the

cherries are coated in a glossy syrup.

Meanwhile, set your largest frying pan

over a medium-highheat. In a large,

shallow dish, whisk the egg, milk,

almondextract and remaining 2 tsp

icing sugar. Add 4 brioche slices to the

mixture, soaking on each side for about

45 seconds until they’ve absorbed plenty

of the mixture but aren’t too soggy. Add

1 tbsp butter to the frying pan and, when

foaming, fry the brioche for 4 minutes

on each side until golden and puffed up.

Arrange on plates while you prepare the

remaining slices in the same way, frying in

the remaining 1 tbsp butter.

Serve 2 slices of brioche per person. Top

with a spoonful of vanilla yogurt and the

warm cherries and syrup (reheat briefly

if necessary). Scatter with the toasted

almonds and dust with a little icing sugar

to serve.

18 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


British Food Fortnight

What is it and how can you get involved?

Food Festivals are back and with the end

of UK lockdown we can’t wait to see the

return of the best Britain has to offer. Taste

of London may have already passed us by

but we are in the most prosperous period

for British Food, with strawberries, beetroot

and various other veggies in their prime.

So what better way to celebrate the UK’s

produce than through a fortnight of foodie

fun?

British Food Fortnight, which takes place

on the 18th September to the 3rd of

October 2021, celebrates the best of British

cuisine across the public sector in schools,

hospitals, care homes and universities.

This year marks our 20th anniversary of

the national celebration and it is set to

be the biggest and most popular to-date

with communities and organisations such

as Silverstone, NHS trusts, Houses of

Parliament and many more across the

county taking part.

There are a host of ways that you

(consumers) can get involved, the easiest is

to ensure you are buying British food from

supermarkets and choosing British food

on menus when you eat out. In Waitrose’s

Food and Drink report 2021 they highlight

that 74% of British people want to see more

food businesses in the UK express their

ongoing support for local British producers.

British Food Fortnight seeks to remedy this

by encouraging your local pubs and shops

to buy British Food through consumers

recommendations.

opportunities for harvest celebrations, such

as attending a traditional Harvest Festival

service in your community.

Finally, why not enter the British Food

Fortnight competition which is open to

everyone. Or perhaps you have someone

you want to nominate who has made a

huge contribution to the promotion of local

food in your area.

British Food Fortnight will not be one to

miss this year. The UK is home to some of

the most fertile soils and varied agricultural

output, what is not to celebrate about that?

See: www.lovebritishfood.co.uk for further

information. And follow the campaign @

LoveBritishFood for the latest news.

In previous years hundreds of schools have

taken part and encouraging your child’s

school to join British Food Fortnight is a

great way to show your support. Love

British Food has a Teacher Zone where

there’s swathes of resources on how to

include food into the curriculum.

In addition, now lockdown is over numerous

local festivals are happening across the

country and you can check out what is

happening near you. Even if nothing is

going on then why not organize your own

foodie event?

British Food Fortnight encompasses the

three Sundays of the Harvest Festival

calendar. Celebrations for this traditional

Pagan festival often include singing hymns

and decorating Churches with baskets

of fruit and food and there are lots of

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 19


HIS

BREAD

& BUTTER

SUSTAINABLE HOUSING

DEVELOPMENT IN

GLOUCESTERSHIRE REACHES

KEY MILESTONE

Richard Bertinet is well-loved

and well-known for being the

UK’s baking ‘godfather’.

His books about baking and his

bread-making courses alike

have delighted audiences for

many years.

Sally Thomson catches up with

him to discuss books, baking

and BBC Maestro, where you

can catch him offering the

ultimate online bread-making

course...

20 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


HOW ARE YOU ON THIS GLORIOUS

DAY?

Making croissants with this weather! It’s

a bit hot in the kitchen but it’s nice to be

open again so all is good.

YOU ARE DOING WONDERFULLY

WELL AT THE MOMENT APART

FROM THE FACT WE HAVE ALL

BEEN THROUGH THIS RATHER

INTERESTING YEAR THINGS SEEM TO

BE GOOD WITH YOU.

We opened in April and we have just tried

to push everything we could this year and

last year. It’s very busy.

SO, PEOPLE ARE ABLE TO COME TO

YOUR CLASS NOW?

Yes, we reopened in April.

SO, THESE CURRENT RESTRICTIONS

HAVEN’T CHANGED YOUR PLANS?

No, we are Covid compliant and can still

have the same number of people. In Bath

40% of the customers come from the

rest of the World so Japan, The States

and Australia. Obviously, they cannot

come to Bath at the moment so we have

a massive backlog of people wanting to

come when they can travel*.

I SEE THAT YOU OFFER CLASSES FOR

CHILDREN, HOW DO YOU FIND THAT?

Teaching children was always very

important to us and we also work with a

lot of local schools in the area and teach

some classes plus talk to the children.

It’s good fun and nice to see them smile

when they try something that they haven’t

done before. I think it’s a shame that so

many schools don’t use cooking and

baking anymore.

I SEE THAT YOU ALSO WORK WITH

PING COOMBES.

Yes, Ping does classes for me. She

teaches Malaysian cooking plus stuff

from my book.

YOU HAVE PRODUCED 6 BOOKS SO

FAR. HAVE YOU GOT ANYMORE IN

THE PIPELINE OR DO YOU NOT HAVE

ENOUGH TIME?

I’ve got a couple of ideas but it’s getting

the time to do it and I like to write a book

for the right purpose not just for the sake

of it so I need to get the time and wait

until things get back to normal.

YOU NEED TO BE CLONED SO THAT

THERE IS ANOTHER ONE OF YOU

AND YOU CAN KEEP UP!

That’s true but there is only one of me

I’m afraid.

WHEN YOU FIRST CAME INTO BATH

IN 2005 DID YOU EXPECT YOUR

CAREER TO TAKE OFF AS IT DID?

I knew the concept we had was good and

if it worked out, we would have success.

When I first moved to Bath a lot of local

businesses gave us 6 months to survive

but that made me more determined to

make it.

TELL US MORE ABOUT YOUR

COOKERY SCHOOL - IT’S GOING

FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH BY

THE SOUNDS OF IT?

Well, the school has been going since

2005 and since then we have won a lot

of awards, we then sold the bakery and a

lot of things have happened in 15 years.

The school is so busy it’s a worldwide

attraction which means we bring a lot of

people to Bath. We won the South West

Tourism Award two years ago due to the

number of people that we attract to Bath.

We have a few guest chefs coming in as

well, but the core classes are with me

learning about bread making, as well as

what I write about in my books.

YOU HAVE SO MANY ACCOLADES

AND EVERYBODY ENJOYS WHAT YOU

HAVE BEEN DOING.

We pride ourselves on the services we

give our customers and also the way I

teach is quite unique - I’m very hands on.

Our school is quite small so it means that

I can spend time with everybody.

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 21


On his baking classes

for children:

“It’s good fun and nice

to see them smile when

they try something

that they haven’t done

before. I think it’s a

shame that so many

schools don’t use

cooking and baking

anymore.”

DO YOU FEEL THAT YOU ARE

GETTING BACK TO NORMAL?

Until we get all our backlog of people

who couldn’t attend last year’s classes

hopefully then we will be back on an

even keel but not yet I’m afraid. We are

open and running and there are some

businesses that can’t do that so in a way

we are one of the lucky ones.

I HEAR THAT YOU WILL BE GETTING

INVOLVED WITH BBC MAESTRO.

Yes, it’s been amazing. We have just

finished editing. I absolutely loved it! It’s

a challenge to do live broadcasts, it’s

recipe lead and different from how I teach

in my classes, but it was well done. The

team were amazing.

YOU HAVE BEEN ON OTHER

COOKERY SHOWS SO DID YOU FIND

THAT THIS WAS A STEP UP?

Yes, I’ve been on Saturday Kitchen with

James Martin so it’s a different buzz

being filmed live and you have to be

mindful of what you do and say.

WHAT IS IT THAT YOU WILL BE

SPECIALISING IN?

It’s specifically about bread and things I

like to do at home. It goes from making

brioche, sourdough to bagels, all that

kind of stuff and things to give people

the confidence to bake at home and feel

that they learn something. It’s going to be

good. The production team was amazing,

and I can’t wait for it to launch.

YOU ARE FROM BRITTANY HAVE

YOU HAD THE CHANCE TO GO BACK

RECENTLY?

We went to France last year, Provence.

We have a house down there and

managed to visit just before lockdown.

BBC Maestro with Richard Bertinet

is available now at bbcmaestro.com.

The course costs £80 for 23 episodes

including written class notes for

each one. An additional bonus festive

episode is expected to launch later in

the year exclusively to subscribers.

thebertinetkitchen.com

22 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


CHOCOLATE, ORANGE

& PISTACHIO LOAF

INGREDIENTS

150g good quality dark chocolate chips

75g roughly chopped pistachios

Zest of 2 oranges

50g mixed peel

1 tablespoon Cointreau (optional)

125g unsalted butter straight from the

fridge

125g full fat milk

3 medium eggs

500g strong white bread flour (plus extra

for dusting)

15g fresh yeast

45g caster sugar

10g fine sea salt

FOR THE GLAZE

2 eggs

Pinch fine sea salt

METHOD

Mix the chocolate chips, nuts zest

and mixed peel in a bowl and stir in

the Cointreau if you are using it. Place

the cold butter between 2 sheets of

greaseproof and bash it with a rolling pin

to soften it and break it up into smaller

pieces (without warming it up).

Put the milk and eggs into the bowl of a

food mixer and then add the flour. Break

up the yeast and add to one side of the

bowl. Add the sugar and salt on the

other side of the bowl.

Mix on a slow speed for 4 minutes.

Increase the speed to medium for another

2 minutes then add the butter piece by

piece until it is all incorporated. Continue

mixing on medium speed for 10-12

minutes until the dough comes away from

the sides of the bowl.

Stop the mixer. Add the chocolate and

pistachio mixture to the bowl and mix

for no longer than 30-40 seconds on

the slowest speed – you don’t want the

chocolate and nuts to become mushy.

Lightly flour your worksurface and turn

the dough out onto the work surface.

Form the dough into a ball and then place

into a lightly floured bowl. Cover and

rest for about 45 minutes until just under

double in size.

Lightly flour the surface again, turn out

the dough and divide into 10 equal pieces

of about 110g each. Form each piece

into a ball and then press gently into

cake or loaf tins until they are full. In the

picture I have used tiny tins that only take

one ball but if you use a larger one you

will have a finished loaf or two that will be

perfect to tear and share. Whether you

have one or two will depend on the size

of your tins. Cover and leave to prove

for about 1 hour until just under double

in size.

While the dough is proving, pre-heat the

oven to 190°C and beat the eggs and

pinch of salt for the glaze. Brush the top

of each loaf with the egg glaze and use a

pair of scissors to snip into the dough for

decoration.

Place the tins on a baking tray and

put into the pre-heated oven. Turn the

temperature down to 180°C and bake for

15-20 minutes until golden.

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 23


Meet the Chefs...

ADVERTISING FEATURE

Chefs, like most people, have had a bit of a year -

no one could have imagined darkened restaurants

and empty kitchens for such a long period and

we wanted to know how some of the countries

fantastic and talented chefs have been spending

that time, so we had a chat to Jim Verity (Head

Chef) & Alice Bowell (Junior Sous Chef) at

Rhinefield House Hotel about things past, and, so

exciting, things to come!

During the past year many chefs have been spending time in

their own kitchens developing menus ready for re-opening -

have you been doing the same?

We certainly have! One of the silver linings of lockdown was

having the time to try out brand new recipes and flavour

combinations, which was fantastic to share with the rest of the

team once we had returned. Some of these have made their way

onto our current menus, and we can’t wait to see how they will

be received.

A hotel kitchen is such a team environment, how excited are

you about being back in the buzzy busy hotel kitchen?

The whole team are incredibly happy to be back – there is

nothing like the feeling of a finely tuned kitchen team working

at pace. We have great camaraderie here, and are already back

into the swing of things with our click and collect, alfresco, and

now inside dining offerings. It has been a real joy to open our

doors and showcase what we can do for our guests.

There seems to have been an increased interest in

traditional, home grown food - clotted cream sales

apparently have increased

vastly - is this reflected in

your new menus?

We always strive to use the

finest seasonal ingredients

and keep provenance

at the forefront of all of

our menus, which means sourcing produce locally whenever

possible. In terms of clotted cream, our afternoon teas have

always been very popular! But in fact, we have seen an

increased interest in our savoury afternoon teas - guests love to

try something new.

And finally, what one thing about the coming months are you

most excited about?

Of course it is to welcome back new and returning guests, and

share the joy of being able to dine out with family and friends

again, and make up for lost time. We are here to make that

experience as special and memorable as possible. Rhinefield

House is such a beautiful place to work, and it comes alive when

it is filled with happy guests enjoying themselves.

LA PERGOLA

R I S T O R A N T E ✦ P I Z Z E R I A

Fully licensed Traditional Italian cuisine

Join us for superb quality food in a relaxed

atmosphere in the heart of the New Forest

Open Lunch & Dinner u Tuesday-Sunday

All Bank Holidays u Childrens Play Area u Ample Parking

Southampton Road, Lyndhurst

Tel/Fax: 02380 284 184

Email: email@lapergolarist.co.uk

www.la-pergola.co.uk

24 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


THE VIEW FROM THE BOUNDARY

We catch up with local estate agents to find out a little more

about the most tumultuous year any of us can remember...

The last 18 months have caused many of us

to re assess how we live and perhaps more

pertinently to this feature, where we live.

Quality of life, surroundings, the need to work

from home and perhaps the desire to spend

at least some of the week still doing so, all

of these factors have changed the housing

market, locally and nationally. We thought

that our key local estate agents would have a

view on this – and we were right...

REBECCA

HESTER,

ADRIAN

DOWDING

It’s been a crazy

18 months

for everyone,

whether you

work within the

NHS (thank you

for all you do NHS),

run a theatre or are an

estate agent, there have

been many challenges for all

to overcome.

The trajectory of the property market has been

well-documented over the last year or so, although

not predicated by anyone within our industry post

Lockdown 1. Lockdown focused all of our minds and a

combination of buyers desire to accelerate their longterm

moving plans, fuelled by the stamp duty holiday

created a perfect storm for a frenzied market.

Looking forward, barring new global pandemics or other

curved balls, I am expecting to see more normality in the

market as we enter autumn, although I’m not anticipating

a huge drop in prices, I think the froth might be taken off

the top if more property becomes available for the many

willing and able buyers still searching for their ideal home.

There remains a strong demand for property in the

Fordingbridge, northern New Forest, South Wiltshire

and East Dorset areas that we cover.

As we enter the traditionally busy Months of September

and October if you are thinking of selling or would

like some no-obligation advice about marketing your

property or the market in general please give me a call

or send an email and I would be delighted to have an

informal chat.

In the meantime, continue to stay safe and be kind.

JEREMY

CALDWELL,

CALDWELLS

What a year

or two it has

been for the UK

economy and

the property

market. The

Covid pandemic

has certainly

brought about

a huge number of

challenges and changes

to the way in which we live and

work,

but as we enter the autumn of 2021 life is returning

to some kind of normal and the demand for property

remains high.

The Government gave the property market a

generous boost with the stamp duty holiday, and

as we were all spending more time at home finding

ourselves needing a home office or more space to

enjoy activities, a huge demand for property began

to develop. Estate Agents then had the challenge of

forming new working practices to make house moving

still possible, including staff working from home,

virtual valuations and virtual tours. In fact, the latter

now play a vital role in house selling, taking the place

of the first house viewing and becoming a very helpful

time-saving tool for everyone involved.

Caldwells experienced record-breaking sales figures

as prices rose, and eventually a shortage of properties

on the market could be noticed. However, with many

buyers still looking for their forever home, we are

looking forward to a positive autumn market with

many new instructions and are confident of sustained

transaction levels and prices.

If you are looking to sell your home or purchase your

forever home this autumn, please do not hesitate to

get in touch with Caldwells. We are here to help.

26 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


Not all estate agents are the same...

Not all estate agents are the same...

8-10 Bridge Street, Fordingbridge SP6 1AH • 01425 655333 • post@adriandowding.co.uk • adriandowding.co.uk

8-10 Bridge Street, Fordingbridge SP6 1AH • 01425 655333 • post@adriandowding.co.uk • adriandowding.co.uk

Thinking of selling? We’re here to help

SOLD

SOLD

SOLD

SOLD

SOLD

SOLD

THIS

SUMMER

Free, confidential advice on all aspects of selling

NEW FOREST | MAYFAIR

01590 675875 | www.caldwellsnewforest.com

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 27


WEEDS The beauty and use of 50 vagabond plants - by Gareth Richards

Weeds are nature’s first responders, healing the wounds that man

inflicts upon the earth. They valiantly bring life back into even the

most polluted land, pushing green shoots of raw ecological power

through tarmac and concrete on abandoned sites.

The cheerful daisy in the pavement crack - or even, dare it be said,

the buddleia that turns derelict buildings into butterfly havens.

Countless plants that we dismiss as weeds have amazing powers.

Every weed has some redeeming qualities.

When the chips are down, weeds come to the rescue. You cut

yourself miles from home on a country walk, there are several

weeds you can reach for to help stop the bleeding - and they even

have antibacterial properties too. We might have lost much of our

countryside but a select band of plants paint the grey concrete

green again. They are a defiant echo of the wild.

In an age of extinctions, weeds offer hope: their very existence is

continual proof of nature’s resilience. Yet we are so often blind to

their beauty. “The notion that a plant is a weed is the most effective

barrier for stopping us looking at it closely” wrote acclaimed

naturalist Richard Mabey first published almost 50 years ago.

Does being native matter? Our perceptions are very much a

question of time: many of our most-loved wildflowers such as

field poppies and cornflowers are technically just as ‘non-native’

as Japanese knotweed, yet because they’ve been here for many

hundreds of years we’ve grown to appreciate and even love them.

Pinning down the native ranges of weeds is a tricky business. Often

they’ve been around mankind for so long that their precise origins

are unknown. Furthermore, the ever-accelerating rate of climate

change means that in Britain our definition of native and nonnative

(one that seeks to freeze our flora into what it was like many

thousands of years ago) is looking more irrelevant by the day.

Only humans make

weeds. Nature abhors

a vacuum. Bare soil

exists rarely in nature,

yet we strive to create

it by ploughing,

digging our gardens

and constructing

buildings and roads.

If we hadn’t created

these ecological

vacuums, these

empty spaces,

there wouldn’t be

nearly so many

weeds. They are

simply trying to

heal our scars on

Mother Nature’s

green skin.

About the

Author:

Gareth Richards is

Digital Features Editor at RHS

and delivers the RHS podcast. Gareth has provided

horticulture expertise for a leading nursery, the BBC, ITV and Bauer

Media.

The Royal Horticultural Society is Britain’s premier gardening charity,

promoting horticulture and helping gardeners by providing inspiration

through its shows, gardens and expertise.

RHS Weeds - The Beauty and use of 50 vagabond plants is

published by Welbeck

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THE HOME

hit list

JOBS TO TACKLE THIS AUTUMN

SEASONAL

REFRESH

PROPERTY MOT

Home maintenance is a year-round

endeavour, but these are the top jobs

to get sorted before the worst of the

winter weather sets in:

CHECK ALL DOOR/WINDOW

SEALS FOR DRAUGHTS

Check that existing seals are still

intact and repair any cracks or holes

that have formed. For a quick and

easy solution, fit doors with draught

excluders to keep rooms warm and to

prevent energy wastage.

CHECK YOUR BOILER

Have a boiler service and check the

system is running efficiently. Many

people put off replacing older boilers,

but you will save money in energy with

more efficient models. If you have one,

make sure your external condenser

pipe is well insulated.

CLEAR GUTTERS

Clear gutters and drainpipes of leaf

debris to reduce the chance of leaks.

Also be sure to check drains for

blockages - prevention is better than

fixing it on a cold night!

CHECK THE OUTSIDE

Look over all external masonry,

checking for cracks, gaps around

windows or issues with roof. Make

sure your front door closes snugly (and

make sure your property is secure

whilst you’re at it).

INSULATION

Insulate your pipes (burst pipes cause

huge damage). Make sure your loft

insulation is adequate and look into

cavity wall insulation, which can

save hundreds ££ on energy bills.

If you can, look into upgrading the

efficiency of your windows with triple

or secondary glazing.

Why is it that we save all the

property redecoration for when we

are getting ready to move? How

about giving your rooms some

TLC with a fresh lick of paint and

swapping in some new accessories

to update the palette.

Try switching out cooler grey tones

for warmer neutrals and introducing

more natural materials like linen,

leather and wood - this means you

can use your base furniture pieces,

and just give them a lift with new

decorative items.

DIY panelling is another huge

trend which is helping people give

rooms a completely new look for

less - why not try adding a wall to a

bedroom in a strong contrast colour

for maximum impact?

PRACTICAL

HOME-WORKING

It looks as though working from home,

or at least a hybrid, flexible model is

here to stay. With that in mind, many

of us are choosing to carve out proper

working spaces instead of balancing on

the end of the kitchen table.

Investing in a proper desk and chair

are fundamental - it’s well known that

sitting for long periods on chairs not

specifically designed for desk work can

cause long-lasting pain.

For desks, there are lots of options for

built-in models into wall space or even

stand up desks. If you don’t have the

space for a full office room, you can

still find inventive ways to incorporate a

desk into wardrobe areas or even into

cupboards, meaning the workspace

can be neatly tucked away at the end

of the day and the space can resume

its original purpose. Storage is another

essential element to stop work admin

spilling out into home life.

Finally, take some time to make your

work space look homely - it stops it

from feeling transitory. Hang some

prints, invest in some greenery or buy

some soft furnishings like cushions

or blankets to make it feel like an

extension of your home.

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www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 31


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IT’S A

SUSTAINABLE HOUSING

DEVELOPMENT IN

GLOUCESTERSHIRE REACHES

KEY MILESTONE

GARDENERS’

WORLD

Adam Frost is an

award-winning British

garden designer,

television presenter and

motivational speaker.

Best known for his

successes at RHS Chelsea

Flower Show, he is

passionate about inspiring

adults and children

alike to create their

own gardens and watch

hedgerows spring to life.

Sally Thomson caught up

with him to discuss all

things green...

WE WERE TALKING ABOUT GEOFF

HAMILTON?

It was originally in North Devon Parks

department that I did my apprenticeship

and then I went to work for Geoff when I

was 21 years old and spent an amazing

mind blowing, not that I think you realise

it in your early 20s working 6-7 years with

Geoff until he passed away in 96.

AN INSPIRATIONAL MAN I SHOULD

IMAGINE?

Yes, looking back I don’t think you

realised what he was talking about, peat

free gardening, Organic gardening, stop

ripping up limestone pavements and

destroying the countryside all the things

that were way before their time really. We

are now 30 years on and we’ve only just

decided to ban peat. I think in reality he

set my gardening moral compass.

HIS SON HAS GONE INTO THE SAME

LINE OF WORK ALSO?

He had 3 sons but Nick the middle son

was left the garden and nursery, so he’s

got Barnsdale plants and gardens.

TELL ME HOW THE GARDENER’S

WORLD EVENT WENT AT BEAULIEU?

I had a lovely weekend! I’d be lying if I

didn’t say I was a bit nervous. I had just

had my 2nd injection It was the first time

I had done anything in a public arena for

about 18 months! You realise that all the

shows are now your general catch up.

WITH THE PANDEMIC DID YOU FIND

IT STRANGE NOT BEING OUT &

ABOUT WITH THE GENERAL PUBLIC?

Definitely, We run a school as well so

we had to close that. I did some stuff on

zoom like most people but that’s a very

strange experience. I’ve never spent

so much time at home or in the garden

through the summer months with my wife

and kids which was a mixed blessing and

gave me time to stop which I don’t think

I’ve done since I was 16.

I BET YOU MISSED THE VIBE OF

BEING AT CHELSEA FLOWER SHOW?

I was due to go back and do a garden

in 2020 so that went but it looks we will

be able to go back in September and

34 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


do some filming but I’m not building

anything now.

HOW DO YOU GO ABOUT BUILDING A

GARDEN FOR CHELSEA?

It can be 12 months to 2 years planning

but at one point I was doing them back to

back finishing one then moving straight

onto the next one. But it’s fascinating, it’s

how I built my career.

“I think ultimately

gardens are about

4 things; People,

Space, Plants and

Place.”

HOW DID YOU FEEL ABOUT YOUR

FIRST CHELSEA GOLD?

If I’m honest, I think I was slightly

oblivious to what they actually meant. My

dad was a landscaper and he built early

John Brooks gardens in the early 70s I

recently met Professor David Stevens

Garden designer who also worked for

John Brooks. We were talking about

Chelsea and he said that my dad would

have been a few gardens along from

where we were. David also taught me a

lot about design in that sense.

WHEN YOU START A DESIGN IS IT

FROM A THOUGHT OR ARE YOU

PLANNING IT IN ADVANCE?

It depends on whether its for a client.

I think ultimately gardens are about 4

things; People, Space, Plants and Place.

It’s normally one of those that I tap into

first and it might be a bit of landscape

it might be an individual picture I’ve

seen it might be the shape of something

whatever it is that gives me an insight

into a person or if it’s a show garden what

particular design will drive it that’s how I

start and then create from there.

DO YOU THINK BEAULIEU WILL BE A

REGULAR EVENT NOW?

I think so, I walked in and thought

what a glorious piece of landscape

and the moment I walked in the gate it

had a good feel. People really enjoyed

themselves and as a setting it had quite a

lovely intimate feel to it, even the stages

had an open canopy, and everybody

was sensible and had plenty of space.

The standard of the displays was really

good and Hilliers had gone there and

built a garden, so it was great that you

had something there of Hilliers quality. I

think a positive out of the last 15 months

is that people have slowed down have

connected or reconnected with what’s

outside their back door or in the area.

I’ve seen a report saying we now have

3 million new gardeners. Everybody

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 35


you talk to in the industry says that

the hunger from last year is still there

which is great. I just hope in a way that

stays. I think even the people that knew

gardening was good for you physically

and mentally, even for me I don’t think I

realised how important it was to my life.

I FIND IT VERY THERAPEUTIC AND

GOOD FOR THE SOUL

It’s interesting that we are seeing

statistics people moving out of cities

and into the countryside and are wanting

bigger gardens it wasn’t that long-ago

people were downsizing and didn’t want

a big outdoor space and this time has

now changed that.

I UNDERSTAND THAT YOU ARE AN

RHS AMBASSADOR? WHAT DOES

THAT ENTAIL?

Yes, I’ve done that for quite a few years

now. Basically, I help them with stuff

looking at helping youngsters to engage

more through events and I did a lot

of work a while back with Homebase

creating apprenticeships so that’s how it

started. I also do a lot of community stuff

with RHS and I’m just about to start a

new project which I can’t say too much

about which will be good. I have travelled

all over to schools, events for them. I

was brought up just outside London and

wasn’t the best behaved, I’m dyslexic

and obviously I’ve done OK and I think

that’s why they wanted me to help.

YOU ARE AT THE NEC IN THE

SUMMER WHAT WILL THAT INVOLVE?

I normally go from stage to stage and talk

all things gardening and there’s different

themes on different stages from talking

about Grow your Own, Unusual edibles,

soil & compost so all sorts really. What

I love about that show is you have the

gardens and displays but it also interlinks

with food and because its at the NEC if

we do have poor weather people can get

inside. Because it’s such a large venue

everything will feel alright.

DO YOU DO ANY JUDGING IN YOUR

ROLE?

I’ve been asked, and I’ve done bits and

pieces, but I don’t really like to just turn

up and judge other people’s work.

SO, AT CHELSEA FOR EXAMPLE ARE

YOU THERE WHEN THE JUDGES

COME AROUND?

You have a 2 minute conversation the day

before to explain if anything has changed

or there have been any adjustments

to the design. They then arrive at your

garden anytime between 7:30 and

9:30am on the day and you must be away

from your garden. Then you have another

24 hours until you find out the result.

WHEN DID YOU REALISE THAT

YOU HAD AN APTITUDE FOR

PRESENTING?

I don’t think I did really, I love what I do I

think it just happened. I was talking to a

Robert Hillier at Chelsea and he said can

you remember the conversation we had

in 2015 where you said the BBC want

me to do some presenting as they think

I’m half decent and he said are you sure

that’s what you want to do and you said

I don’t know but I’ll give it a go and here

we are now.

“I would say to

anybody there is

so much glorious

flower colour foliage

colour stem colour

to be had and the

light is different so

the atmosphere is

different you can

still wrap up and

enjoy it just don’t

disengage. Don’t

chase perfection just

enjoy the moments.”

WHAT WOULD YOU ADVISE OUR

READERS TO DO TO THEIR GARDENS

BEFORE AUTUMN?

Don’t disengage with the garden, I think

we get to September the kids go back to

school and people pack up their gardens.

I think our environment has changed

so much that you cant month to month

garden anymore you have to react to the

month you are in September, October

and even going into November we can

still have some cracking days and only

have our first frosts going into December

so I would say to anybody there is so

much glorious flower colour foliage

colour stem colour to be had and the light

is different so the atmosphere is different

you can still wrap up and enjoy it just

don’t disengage. Don’t chase perfection

just enjoy the moments.

Adam Frost, along with other gardening

celebrities, will be appearing at the NEC

in Birmingham from Thursday August 26

to Sunday August 29.

For ticket information, please visit

www.bbcgardenersworldlive.com

36 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


Tel: 01590 670370 | enquires@crestwoodcontract.com

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We caught up with personal trainer Arron Collins-Thomas to find out about his new

online fitness offering, expanded from his very successful gym TONIQ...

Your gym, with its fully-rounded approach to health and

lifestyle, has made national news for its incredible client

results – what will the app offer?

At TONIQ we recognise that good health is more than just

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Not only this, but as part of TOD you have access to your own

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We have had some incredible results over the past few years at

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As a TONIQ On Demand member you get to join the incredible

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The main workouts are written based on what we are up to at

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Can you get a good experience with online coaching?

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With TOD you have a designated TONIQ coach who you speak

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RETIREMENT

PLANNING:

A GUIDE

Katie Thomson shares tips

for getting your financial

ducks in a row for a happy

retirement...

Retirement planning is a multi-faceted

process which evolves over time - to

have a comfortable and secure future,

you have to have the means to fund

it. Fewer people have access to the

guaranteed income that comes with a

final salary pension, and with longer to

wait until eligibility for the state pension,

it’s pertinent to start planning as early as

possible for the retirement you want. The

better prepared you are now, the better

your retirement will be.

There are many strands to retirement

planning, and much of it depends on

your stage of life. It’s important to seek

advice from a registered financial planner

who can help you make the most of your

unique circumstances.

There are some handy way points to help

you get a grasp on where you are and

what you will need - here’s a checklist of

things to consider:

Understand what your retirement

income is likely to be:

You will be adding to your pension fund

during your working life, but it’s important

you get a handle on your various pension

pots to forecast the actual figure you will

have access to.

Check your state pension:

The rising state pension age can have a

real knock-on effect to your retirement

planning - a state pension forecast will

help you to gauge how much you’re on

course to get from the government.

Get an understanding of your

expenditure:

Having an idea of your expenditure will

help you plan longer-term. Your living

costs are likely to be a lot lower than

in other phases of life - you might be

mortgage-free and you don’t have the

same costs for commuting, recreation or

childcare for example.

You may wish to improve your home

or go on some amazing trips, so it’s

important you know you have the

financial reserves to do this.

When should you start drawing a

pension?

You don’t have to stop working to draw

down your pension - as long as you

are over the age of 55 - but be aware,

the sooner you start dipping into it, the

sooner the pot will deplete.

How much will retirement cost?

This is the golden question, and really

depends on the level of comfort or luxury

you are looking for in your autumn years.

A recent Which? study found that the

average retired household (those living

alone or as couples) spent an around

£2,170 per month - this is covering all

the basic areas of expenditure and some

luxuries like European holidays. Those

looking for a more luxurious lifestyle

including longer-haul trips and new cars

every five years would need to allow

for approximately £3,400 per month, or

£41,000 per year.

Once you have a framework for the

amount you’ll need, and what you are

on track for saving, you also need to

consider how you will access your

pension pots - these might be state

pension, a final salary pension and a

money purchase/defined contribution

pension.

With your defined contribution pot,

such as the one you might get in the

government employee scheme, you can

draw the entire pension pot in one go,

but this will mean it’s entirely down to

you to make the money last and you’ll

invariably pay a substantial tax bill. Most

people with these pensions will opt for

income drawdown or an annuity, or a

combination of both when it comes

taking money out of their pension.

With careful planning and accurate

forecasting, your retirement can be

something to really look forward to, but

it is essential to make an assessment of

your position as early as possible and

use the advice of experts to make your

money work harder for you.

40 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


Telephone: 023 8076 4389

Fax: 023 8091 4413

Email: info@southcoasturology.co.uk

South Coast Urology (SCU)

are a team of seven consultant

urological surgeons providing

a comprehensive service in all

aspects of urology...

Each consultant holds a teaching hospital appointment at

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expertise in a specific area of urology.

You may choose to see any of our experts for a consultation

and diagnosis, our philosophy is that through subspecialisation

and team-working we are able to guarantee

that should they require an operation, it will be performed

by a high volume surgeon – something that has been shown

time and again to improve outcomes for patients.

Our services include:

• 2 week wait (e.g. raised PSA,

abnormal DRE, haematuria,

testis and renal masses).

• Prostate cancer diagnostics

using multi parametric MRI,

specialist and targeting

biopsy techniques (template,

fusion, smart), robotic surgery,

salvage treatments.

• Benign prostate disorders

such as benign enlargement,

infections, inflammation.

Treatment options include

TURP, HoLEP (laser surgery),

Urolift, PAE (Prostate Artery

Embolisation).

• Urinary tract stone disease

with shockwave lithotripsy,

ureteroscopy, laser lithotripsy,

micro/mini/standard PCNL

and chemical pathology

support to prevent further

stones.

• Bladder conditions such

as over-active bladder

(OAB), infections, stones,

incontinence, supported by

a high quality urodynamics

service.

• Men’s health conditions

including erectile dysfunctions

(ED), andropause,

contraception (vasectomy).

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laparoscopic and open cancer

options for those with bladder,

renal, testis and neighbouring

organ tumours.

South Coast Urology work

closely with a wider network

of specialists including

radiologists, oncologists, nurses

and chemical pathologists.

Appointments are available 5

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Bournemouth and Chandler’s

Ford.

Our efficient administration

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direct your patient to the most

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condition at a time that suits.

www.southcoasturology.co.uk


ADVERTISING FEATURE

ask the specialists

It is a fairly commonly held belief that men put off going to the doctors, particularly when

it comes to urological problems so we spoke to Richard Lockyer of South Coast Urology

about this and other related matters…..

Can you tell us some of the symptoms that should prompt us

to get in touch with a specialist in Urology…

The most common symptoms are relating to passing urine. The

most bothersome are frequency and urgency (ie needing to void

in a hurry as un able to hold on) and are often associated with

needing to get out of bed frequently at night. Many of these

develop quite slowly and patients blame ageing, which can

be partly true, but it is always a shame that a person’s lifestyle

becomes limited when options exist for treatment.

We would recommend investigations for recurrent urinary

tract infections (UTI) in everyone and would often recommend

investigations for a man suffering a single UTI, as this can relate

to an underlying condition such as stones, poor emptying or even

a tumour. The biggest red flag symptom is seeing blood in the

urine and this nearly always requires urgent investigation.

We know that some conditions are lifestyle related, what

changes to our lifestyles would you recommend to avoid or

mitigate urological problems?

Clearly we should all strive for a healthy diet, maintain a sensible

weight and exercise regularly. Many of us drink too little and we

should aim to consume around 2 litres of fluid a day. This

flushes our urinary system and will reduce the chances of kidney

stones and urine infections. Caffeine (tea, coffee, coca-cola, red

bull etc) is irritant to bladder and reduction will often help with

frequency/ urgency symptoms. Smoking is still a big contributor

to bladder cancer risk and there is lots of support available to

help quit.

What are the consequences of delay in seeking attention?

A delay in seeking attention can mean a delay in diagnosing

conditions that can have long term consequences. This is

obvious for any underlying cancer but can also be true for

conditions affecting kidney function or bladder function, leading

to kidney failure or the need for long term catheter (tube to the

bladder) for example.

Talking to someone about intimate problems can be difficult,

and make people put off doing so – what would you say to

someone who is currently ‘suffering in silence’?

It is always difficult for patients to address intimate problems.

However, patients should remember two things. First is that

the partners at South Coast Urology are experts in these areas

and therefore talk to patients daily and have full and sensitive

discussions about your problems. Secondly, you are not alone

and these problems are much more common than patients often

realise.

And finally what has been the effect of the last eighteen

months on patient contact?

There have been positives and we now know that remote patient

consultations over the telephone or by video call can be very

useful and reduce travel time etc. However, the number of men

seeking help for symptoms that might lead to a prostate cancer

diagnosis has reduced markedly, both locally and nationally. The

impact for many will be minor but a significant minority will be

presenting late and that might require more major treatments and

/ or reduce chances of cure.

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New choices, more

options in Knee Surgery

Recent developments and new techniques

from specialist surgeons improve function

and speed recovery in knee patients

Knee surgery is changing

There has rarely been a more exciting time to be involved with

knee surgery as a Surgeon and as a patient. Rapid advances in the

development of new, minimal implants and improved patient care

maximises what we can achieve in both symptom relief and function.

The establishment of specialist knee services, such as that offered

by Professor David Barrett at the Spire Hospital, Southampton, is an

example of how improvements in technology can be utilised to offer

patients more choice of minimal intervention with reliable outcomes

that can for the first time include return to sporting activities such as

tennis, golf and skiing.

When would knee preservation, partial resurfacing, be

appropriate?

Whilst in advanced cases, the entire joint may have to be replaced,

there is increasing evidence that arthritis or the bone on bone contact

that causes the pain as the knee begins to wear, occurs initially in

specific areas of the knee.

At this stage, the rest of the joint is in good condition, and the

underlying bone is strong. The technique of partial resurfacing is

focused on intervening at this stage, rather than delaying until the

whole joint is involved and a complete replacement is required as all

the surfaces and the bone below has become involved. Long-term

studies show that if the intervention is correctly performed, arthritis

will not progress in the joint and a partial resurfacing is all the patient

will require to resume their activity, pain free for the significant long

term of fifteen to twenty years.

What is involved in a partial resurfacing?

The damaged surface of the bone on the affected part of the

knee is carefully removed and the resurfacing consisting of cobalt

chrome metal alloy is securely fixed to the area to provide a smooth

surface where previously there was roughened bone. This process

requires a specialist technique and specific instruments conducted

by a surgeon who has undergone expert training. Between the two

resurfaced areas of the knee, a polyethylene “cartilage’ acts as shock

absorber and spacer.

What are the advantages of a partial resurfacing?

The most significant advantage to the patient of partial resurfacing is

the degree of function and the speed of recovery following surgery,

coupled with the minimization of pain and the ease of mobilization.

Prof. Barrett’s patients usually walk, fully weight bearing, on the day

of operation. The surgical incision using minimal access techniques

is considerably smaller than that of total knee replacement (TKR) and

the speed of recovery is three times more rapid than TKR. When the

incision is stable and the patient has ascended and descended stairs,

they return home either the same day, or the day after surgery. Within

a few weeks patients can expect to resume driving and all the other

normal activities of daily living. Importantly, because of the minimal

nature of the surgery, any complications following operation are

between 50 – 70% less when compared to TKR.

Don’t miss our next edition which

includes our exclusive interview with

Amanda Owen. Amanda will also

share her wonderful recipes with us....

plus tales of her life in Yorkshire

Because all the knee ligaments remain intact, significantly more

function and activities will be possible after this intervention. Research

shows the knee continues to move in a natural pattern and returning

social sports, such as tennis, golf and skiing as well as riding, cycling

swimming and dancing are encouraged.

ADVERTISING FEATURE

Professor David Barrett

Knee Surgeon Bioengineer

www.professordavidbarrett.co.uk

Email: david@professordavidbarrett.co.uk

Appointments: 02380 776877

44 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


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ADVERTISING FEATURE

Care heroes

There have been many Care Heroes over

the last year. We are delighted to be able to

share with you a few stories, starting with

the amazing career of Lin Silvestri,

Surgical Ward Sister at Spire Hospital

Southampton whose career spans 50

years in nursing...

You have had an extraordinary career

in a very demanding job – what

motivates you?

My motivation at 67 is to maintain a wellrun

ward, pass on my experience to my

team and help them grow in confidence

and provide a high standard of care and

support. I have no plans for retirement yet

but who knows what the future may hold.

Like all good Sisters I like to run a tight

ship, this helps me keep things running

smoothly whether it is juggling beds for

new admissions, supporting staff with

their workload or balancing staffing

numbers for compliance.

The last year has presented challenges

few can have ever anticipated, how

has it affected you?

When the COVID lockdown was

announced, we were very fortunate to

be offered the chance to continue major

Lin started Nursing in 1971 at Lord

Mayor Treloar Hospital in Alton, “I put

on my uniform and was introduced to

the ward I would work on I realised that

Nursing was the career for me and it has

never ceased to provide me with new

experiences every day”.

cancer surgery as we are closely linked

with the Southampton University Hospital

Trust. We had many admissions during

the last lockdown and this lockdown, we

have all gained experience, and I have

felt very honoured to provide care to

Hampshire and parts of Dorset.

As a team, we have welcomed the

challenge to be able to provide this type

of care and I am sure Spire Healthcare

are proud of the whole team at Spire

Southampton for stepping up to the

challenge.

There are so many negatives from the

pandemic but have there been any

positives?

One of the positive aspects of this

Pandemic is the relationship we have

forged with the NHS teams who have

been here to assist. We were able to

reduce the length of stay for major

urinary surgeries, we have received

positive feedback from the Trust. All our

staff are aiming to motivate our patients

from operation day to help them recover

safely which enables us to reduce the

patient’s length of stay. We have also

had to provide other holistic support to

our patients as no visitors were allowed.

The staff have almost become surrogate

families to the patient in for long spells

and that was special to see.

So much has changed in those 50

years, what have we gained, and what

have we lost in terms of working life in

the medical profession?

When I first started, nursing student

nurses were seen but not heard and even

as a junior Registered Nurse, the Ward

Sister was approached only through a

senior nurse. Matrons were very much in

attendance and would wander the wards

trying to catch staff out by questioning

them about their patients. Elements

of this approach needed to change to

improve care for patients and the working

environment for staff. Some may argue a

return to some of these standards would

be beneficial. Now patients are much

more well informed and may question

the advice given to them by healthcare

professionals, this can cause anxiety for

newly qualified nurses but we should

encourage them to voice any concerns!

Finally, what one piece of advice would

you give someone considering a career

in nursing?

I think it is an exciting time for the young

people to think about a career in Nursing,

I would recommend that they constantly

watch and absorb as much as they can

from all staff that they meet throughout

their training! I now have a wonderful

team of Nurses who support me as much

as I support them. My Consultants have

developed a mutual trust with the team

and me; this helps us provide a level of

care that helps the patients recover in a

comfortable environment. It takes time to

create but it is a rewarding place to be.

023 8077 5544 | spirehealthcare.com

46 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


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www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 47

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