Taunton and South Somerset Living Dec 2021 - Jan 2022


At last the Christmas editions are here! With festive fun, gifts and interiors, plus kitchen design advice from Interior Design expert Julia Kendell and an interview with the Yorkshire Shepherdess Amanda Owen. Plus, our competition pages return, with staycations, laundry upgrades, festive hampers and a chance to win tickets to see Paloma Faith in concert!


Visit our extensive showroom with over 25 displays, to view at your leisure.

Call the team on 01823 665 663 or email enquiries@mayflowerbathrooms.co.uk

to speak to one of our expert bathroom designers.

Showroom open by appointment only basis

5c Castle Road, Chelston Business Park, Wellington, Somerset, TA21 9JQ


Opening hours: Monday to Friday 8am - 5pm

by pre-arranged appointment only.

Weekends available upon request


A Note

from the EDITOR



A Culinary Journey through


Home Ireland

Hit List of jobs

It’s certainly the challenge of

publishing that you always have your

head in the wrong season - each year,

Christmas begins for us in July, which

is about the same time as I start to

ask my friends and family what they’d

like as a present or if they’re free for a

meal in December - each year I’m met

with the same furrowed brows and

a ‘my god, I haven’t started thinking

about that yet!’

Forward planning aside, it is a rather

lovely, smug feeling to know that I’m

mostly sorted for the festivities - my

only issue being losing said gifts

between July and December 25th. If

your industry doesn’t quite prepare

you in the same way though, we’ve

got a bevy of festive features to help

get you prepped.

Our competition

page returns


Alongside Christmas features,

we’ve got a lovely interview with

The Yorkshire Shepherdess Amanda

Owen - her new book has some of

the most stunning photography and

amazing anecdotes from her life.

We’ve also got a festive gift guide

to get the ideas flowing and some

delicious new ideas for special festive

food from the experts of flavour -

Maldon Sea Salt.


The Yorkshire Shepherdess

Amanda Owen

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

Front cover courtesy of Cox & Cox

Key Account Manager Ade Hill

e adrian.hill@minervapublications.co.uk

t 01225 984 496

twitter: @TauntonLiving


Interior Designer

Julia Kendell


Paxcroft Farm, Hilperton, Trowbridge

BA14 6JB t 01225 984 550

w www.minervamagazines.co.uk

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.

The news has been all doom and

gloom of late, but I think it’s important

that, toy shortage/turkey drama/fuel

crisis or not, this year’s Christmas is

looking so much brighter than 2020’s,

and there’s so much to be thankful

for. This quote from the legendary Bob

Hope really captured that for me:

“My idea of Christmas, whether

old-fashioned or modern, is very

simple: loving others. Come to

think of it, why do we have to

wait for Christmas to do that?”

We are looking forward to seeing

you again in February - we are

doing away with the New Year, New

You nonsense and instead focusing

on what 2022 can offer you. Until

then, take care, have a very Merry

Christmas and a peaceful New Year.


www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 3


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


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.


A Laundry

Bundle from


worth over


For most of us, laundry is a bit of a chore, so to lighten the load,

we’re giving away a luxury laundry bundle from Brabantia worth

over £500.

The prize includes Brabantia’s new Bo Laundry Bin Hi, which

will blend effortlessly into your decor with its sleek finish and

has two 45L compartments for easy separating your whites

from your colours. When spring comes around again, you

can then hang your washing out on Brabantia’s Rotary Dryer

Lift-o-Matic Advance which can easily be adjusted to your

ideal height. For those grey days, Brabantia’s 23m Drying Rack

Tower is the perfect inside solution. Finally, prep your fresh

laundry for the wardrobe with a Brabantia Ironing Board. ThisXL

model is designed for easy ironing of any outfit!


Closes 15/01/2022 - Competition keyword ‘BRABANTIA’

Looking for the perfect gift this Christmas? Delight your friends

and family with a selection box of delicious treats. One lucky

reader will win a ‘Decadent Christmas in a Box’ containing the


6kg Free Range Whole Turkey | 4.5kg Unsmoked Ham | 1kg

Side of Smoked Salmon | 1kg Organic Cheddar | 1kg Cropwell

Bishop Stilton | Christmas Pudding | Harrow & Hope Brut

Reserve (750ml bottle) | Classic Cranberry Sauce | Granny’s

Apple Chutney | Artisan Coronation Sauce | British Goose

Fat | Luxury Bread Sauce | Traditional Roast Gravy | Sage &

Onion Stuffing | Pigs In Blankets | 200g Smoked Chicken 200g

Smoked Duck


Christmas in

a box! Worth


4 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


Closes 10/12/2021. Competition keyword






PLUS tickets

to see Paloma

Faith worth


Looking for the perfect excuse to get

away? The outstanding Paloma Faith is

touring the UK in the Summer of 2022

for her “Summer of Optimism” Tour 2022

and we are giving you the chance to win

2 x GOLD PLUS tickets (worth £180) to

see her live at any of the following venues: Parc

Y Scarlets, Llanelli – Saturday 18th June, Central Park,

Plymouth – Saturday 9th July, Darlington Arena – Saturday

16th July, Bitts Park, Carlilse – Saturday 24th July, Slessor

Gardens, Dundee – Sunday 24th July, Leicestershire County

Cricket Club – Sunday 31st July. The winning gold plus

tickets will grant the lucky winners early entry (no queuing!),

premium bar and toilet facilities, and are situated in the Golden

Enclosure, which is the closest area to the stage. If you win,

you can choose from any of the locations above and make a

weekend of it!


Closes 15/01/2022 - Competition keyword ‘PALOMA’


an overnight

stay and

dinner worth


Win a luxury stay at the Charlecote Pheasant in the historic

Stratford-upon-Avon. Your prize includes an overnight stay in

a Suite with breakfast, bottle fizz in your room and a 3 course

dinner or a 3 course Sunday lunch.


Closes 15/01/2022 - Competiton keyword ‘CHARLECOTE’.

Adagio, the European leader in aparthotels is giving one lucky

winner a two-night stay for two at one of their amazing UK

properties in London, Birmingham, Edinburgh or Liverpool. Their

apartments comprise of a kitchen, bedroom and living area

with flat screen smart TV - great for lounging after a busy day of

activities. T&Cs available online.


A City

Break with




Closes 15/01/2022 - Competition keyword ‘ADAGIO’


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mmmoooooooorrrrrrrreeeeee iiiiiinnnnnffoooooooorrrrrrrrmmmaaaaattttiiiiiioooooooonnnnn,ggoooooooo ttttoooooooo



01844 267816


SAT 4 DEC, 7:30PM






10 - WED





FRI 25 - SAT

26 MAR

01823 414141 | tacchi-morris.com

6 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


The Good Schools Guide offers some suggestions to take into consideration when making the change

Whether you want to change from a

single sex school to co-ed or from day to

boarding, private to state, A levels to IB -

or vice versa there are plenty of reasons to

move schools post - GCSEs.

When to start looking

We’d advise getting the ball rolling

towards the end of their year 10 in time

for sixth form open days and applications

which generally take place the following


Discussions about post-GCSE options

will already be taking place at your child’s

current school by then and looking at

other sixth forms will widen your options.

Maybe the broader based curriculum

of the IB would suit them better than

specialising at A level? Maybe they want

to pursue a more practical, less exam

based, route? Or perhaps your child

simply feels ready for a fresh start and

new faces.

Choosing a new sixth form

The decision needs to be a joint effort

between parents and children, based as

much on personal preference as objective

research. Your child may have formed

opinions about other schools via friends

and social media but however popular a

particular sixth form may be, it’s no good

if it doesn’t offer the subjects they want

to study.

Guide your child to consider the areas

of study they genuinely enjoy or find

interesting. Also bear in mind that the

demands of some A levels, such as

maths, are a big jump from GCSE and

most schools will set higher GCSE grade

requirements for these.

It may seem too early when your child

hasn’t even finished their GCSE courses

to start talking about university subjects

and destinations, but if they are going to

change school for sixth form it’s important

to at least start thinking about the ultimate

goal. For instance, if Oxbridge or medical

8 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk

school is the aim then A level choices

need to be made accordingly and a

potential school’s record of Oxbridge and

medical school places taken into account.

If university isn’t part of the plan then you’ll

need to ask the school or college about

provision for pupils who are interested in

alternative post-18 options such as degree


You can find latest information on a

school’s Oxbridge, medical school and

non-university destinations in the ‘Exit’

section of The Good Schools Guide


Day to boarding

A move to boarding school for sixth form

- see this article for more - is often said

to be a good preparation for university.

But manage your expectations – in our

experience most sixth form boarding

accommodation is more luxurious than the

average university hall of residence!

Most boarding schools have separate

provision for sixth formers where they can

live more independently and with fewer

restrictions than younger pupils. If you

are looking at full, as opposed to weekly,

boarding then find out how many sixth

formers are in school at weekends and

what activities are on offer (our writers

suggest looking at boarding house

noticeboards to see sign-up sheets for

weekend activities).

While it’s usually possible, with

permission, for boarding sixth formers to

attend day pupils’ parties for instance,

it’s unlikely that any school will allow the

same freedom to socialise (particularly

with regard to sexual relationships) as day

school pupils. Discuss school rules and

regulations frankly with your child - if they

(or you) are horrified then maybe boarding

isn’t the right choice.

Independent to state

A move from independent to state school

is often determined by family finances, but

we wonder whether it could also now be a

strategic decision.

State school sixth forms or sixth form

colleges often have exam results that are

comparable to independent schools and

they may also offer a wider range of post-

GCSE choices.

And as the UK’s top universities strive to

rebalance their admissions procedures to

correct what was (rightly) criticised as an

independent school bias, will this prompt

more independent school parents to send

their children to take A levels at state sixth

forms? Time will tell.

State to independent

If you think your child would benefit from

taking A levels at an independent school

but are worried about affording the fees, it

could be worth checking whether you can

apply for a bursary. Some schools offer

bursaries specifically for pupils joining the

sixth form from the local state sector.

Entry requirements

These differ considerably but five or six

GCSEs including English and maths at

grade 6 or above, with grade 7 or higher

in subjects to be studied at A level (can

be 8 or 9 for maths/further maths), is the

minimum for most selective schools.

Many schools set the sixth form entry

bar much higher and in addition to a

full set of GCSEs at grades 9-7, also

expect candidates to sit papers in their

prospective A level subjects. Schools will

usually interview prospective sixth formers


The Good Schools Guide is the UK’s

number one school guide, helping

parents in every aspect of choosing

the best education for their children

using their unbiased and impartial

school reviews, alongside a host of

articles advising on all aspects of

school life. Find out more at www.


A school for the

21st century

Scholarships at Taunton School

We warmly invite day and boarding pupils from any school to apply for an award and discover the benefits of an

inspiring Taunton School education. There’s still time to apply, the application deadlines are as follows:

• 13+ Scholarships (Entry into Year 9): Monday 10th January 2022

• International Baccalaureate Scholarship: Monday 24th January 2022

To find out more call 01823 703703 or visit www.tauntonschool.co.uk

Follow us @TauntonSchool

The Best of the










Local company Blackdown Shepherd Huts have recently

launched their 10th anniversary design, named the ‘1121’ to

celebrate their journey.

Managing Director Will Vickery said, “We really wanted to bring

in the elements of the original shepherd huts that inspire us

every day, showcase the skills we have learnt over the last 10

years and challenge our amazing team to design and build yet

more market-leading innovations into our latest Blackdown

Brace Shepherd Hut for 2021.

Inside, you’ll find our signature lounge and kitchen space, but

our bench and table configuration has been upgraded and now

can be converted into a cinema/sleeping booth, with the ability

to close the area off as a family bedroom. We’re very excited to

be bringing this to the market.”

You can find the exciting new design at their display garden near

Ilminster. Viewings are by appointment only.


Shrubbery Farm, Catherine Wheel, Ilminster, Somerset


We’re a family ran business based in Taunton Somerset pleased

to be supplying quality wood fuels for homes and businesses

with a friendly & personal service.

All of our wood fuels are produced by us then dried to well

below 20% moisture content in our custom-made kiln, fuelled

by our wood shards & timber unsuitable to produce into logs to

sell. What do we mean by unsuitable to sell? This would be logs

that have been processed too small too large or from a species

that we don’t supply this results in us having zero wood waste


Our timber is sourced locally from responsibly managed

sustainable woodlands. We never import timber or logs this

keeps us in tight control of quality & stock levels. Not importing

also reduces our carbon footprint, the less our wood travels

before it reaches you the better.

Importantly we’re a Woodsure certified fuel supplier, our wood

fuels arrive with you ready to burn.

07412 792227



The Levels Financial is a mortgage and protection brokerage

based in Long Sutton on the picturesque Somerset Levels. The

brokerage was founded by its three directors - Tom, Connor and

Luke - who wanted to take their years of experience advising

clients and combine it with their shared ethos for putting client’s

needs first.

With their holistic approach and recommendations from both

existing clients and developers and estate agents across four

counties, they have expanded the team this year to include three

more team members who ensure that their high standard of

service continues as the business grows.

The Levels’ online reviews show that their clients are at the heart

of everything they do, and their friendly approach also means

that you will be totally at ease while making what is likely to be

the financial commitment of a lifetime. From first time buyers

to portfolio landlords and everyone in between, The Levels

Financial have a wealth of knowledge and access to a variety of

lenders to try and cater for each situation, and customer service

that is second to none.

10 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk

01458 772 040



The Woolverton Gallery near Bath opened on 1st June this year

and is rapidly establishing itself as a top private gallery with over

100 works of art displayed in the 5 stunning exhibition



Grants of Somerset is a boutique-style shop with a big

reputation. As South Petherton’s premier destination for home

decor and gifts, we’ve built a loyal customer-base in Somerset

and beyond. Filled with everything from gorgeous lamps and

vases, luxurious cushions and candles, right through to fine

glassware and sustainable greetings cards, there really is

something for everyone.

So, whether you’re looking to refresh your home, or want to put

a smile on someone else’s face with a fantastic gift, make sure

you drop into Grants of Somerset on Market Square. We’re in

the beautiful Somerset village of South Petherton where there’s

plenty to see and do. If you can’t make it to the shop, we’re

always open online and offer free national delivery on all orders

over £15.

We represent the work of 30 fine artists, with a wide variety of

styles and price range: there is something for even the most


Ray Jones, the gallery owner/curator says “We are delighted

with our first half year, it has been a privilege working with such

a wonderful group of artists, being able to provide them with a

venue to exhibit their work and, in particular, to finalise a good

number of sales.”

The gallery is open 7 days a week, and Ray is always inhouse

to give visitors personal attention and information about all the




Want to treat someone? No problem. If you’ve got a special

request such as gift-wrapping or a personalised message, just

let us know – we’re always happy to help.


8 Market Square, South Petherton, Somerset TA13 58T



Keepers Kitchen and Bar, Bridgwater’s newest chic restaurant!

Situated within the ibis Bridgwater Hotel, Keepers is open to all,

providing a sanctuary in a hive of activity.

Local Provenance and supporting suppliers in the area is a

passion for all at Keepers. This ethos runs through the heart

of the menu, from the butchers to the various cheeses we’ve

sourced, all the way to the ice cream – and of course the

fabulous honey that features throughout!!

Keepers champion local talent through #ibismusic with

monthly music evenings offering guests and local residents the

opportunity to listen whilst they dine or simply enjoy a Zeal and

Tonic; the signature Gin produced by E18TEEN Gin.

We are soon to launch a Keepers Loyalty scheme, where regular

and local diners will be rewarded with discounts and special

offers, unique to them!





Somerset gin maker Leigh Kearle founded E18hteen in 2016

and, after successfully launching his classic London dry gin, has

now expanded the distillery’s repertoire to include a range of

fascinating new flavours gin and more recently a range of rums

which are already collecting awards and being noticed.

Our E18hteen Gin is expertly crafted from sugar beat vodka

produced by master distillers. This enables us to give you the

very best yield and makes our artisan gin flavoursome, fragrant

and smooth. We are among a minority of distilleries that opt

to create their gin this way, meaning our gin delivers unrivalled

freshness, taste and the perfect finish to the palate.

We are proud to source local produce for the making of our

premium vodka, including sugar beet, for an outstandingly bold,

smooth and aromatic blend.

After creating our distinct vodka, we re-distil it. This enables us

to give you the very best taste yield that makes our artisan gin

so flavoursome, fragrant and smooth.




www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 11

Kaloo Lapinoo Rabbit,

£17.99, jojomamanbebe.co.uk


The gift

Help children

learn to code with

Blockly, Snap!,


Python and


Artie Max, £110,


Designed by

AndaSeat, who



race car seats.

with lumbar

and head


Leather Gaming

Chair, £369.99,


GOTS Organic


Pyjamas, £26,



Unisex Mouse

Babygrow Set, £45,


Woodland Nesting

Creatures, £22,



Electric Stove



Organic cotton

and amazing

colours and


Nila Nepp Top,

£22 and Kieran



£28, both


Lindt Bear and

Styorybook Set, £10,



Aranya Hmong

Cushion, £32,


Stunning photobooks on high quality

paper with helpful autofill options

Soft, Fabric or Hardcover

Photobooks, from £18.99,



Veloce Coffee Machine, £600,


Lattes flat whites and

more! Get those coffee

shop style drinks in a

flash at home with this

bean to cup coffee machine

Master Lock Biometric Padlock - with up to

10 saved fingerprints, £89, masterlock.eu

Gusbourne Brut Reserve 2017, £39,


Cuisinart Precision Stand Mixer,

£275, cuisinart.co.uk

12 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk

A personalised softcover

notebook is a thoughtful gift

Polaar Polar Night

Revitalizing Cream

with Boreal Algae,

£42, polaar.com


Eye Pillow

Made from sustainably

harvested natural cork bark

with a non-slip surface

which increases grip with


Cork mat and block set, £75,


Heatable Lavendar

Eye Pillow, £11.99,



Softcover Printed Notebook,

£16.99, rosemood.co.uk

Build the perfect bar

cart with Dartington’s

Limelight Mitre champagne

saucer, £55 for set of two or

pair of Margarita glasses,

£20, dartington.co.uk

Luxury Heavyweight

Merino Scarf, £90,


T3 Curl ID, £189,


The ultimate curler which

adapts to your hair type

and damage level

Cashmere Sweatshirt

in Emerald, £179,


BeGlow Tia All-In-

One Sonic Skincare

System, £199,


Micro Merlin


Knife Trio, £99,



The Micro

Explorer Electric

Scooter, £349.95,

reduced from




18 mile range,

foldable and

ultra light weight

with 15mph

top speed

Andrée Jardin

Sneaker Care

Kit, £33.50,



True Wireless Stereo

Earphones, £57.99,


Eco Sports

Cloak Long

Sleeve, £119.95,


Perfect if they love outdoor

pursuits or sports

Scrivner For Men 5 Step

Skin Strategy - £127,


www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 13

Amanda Owen

The yorkshire Shepherdess

Tells us about her life in the Dales

Known to millions as The Yorkshire

Shepherdess, Amanda Owen is the

author of five best-selling books about

her life on Ravensea, one of the most

remote farms in the country, where she

lives with her husband Clive and nine

children. She currently stars in Channel

5’s popular TV show Our Yorkshire

Farm and her latest book is Celebrating

the Seasons includes stories, recipes

and photos from the farm and is out now.

I understand that you had had no

previous links to farming, may I ask

how you became so involved in this line

of work?

I grew up in Huddersfield and no one in

my family is from a farming background.

I loved the James Herriot books when I

was a child, and watched the TV series.

Because of James Herriot I loved the idea

of being a vet, probably like most other

children of that era, but was told at school

that I was not academic enough to make

the grades. One day in the school library

I picked up a book called Hill Shepherd.

It was a photographic documentary of

hill farming in Yorkshire and Cumbria.

Reading that book was an epiphany for

me, the pictures of the hill shepherds on

the moors with the sheep made me realise

it was where I wanted to be. It ticked the

box of wanting to work with animals in

the countryside and importantly it also

ticked the rebellion box as it was so the

opposite of my townie life up until then.

Years later after I had married my husband

Clive, we realised that there was actually a

photograph of him in Hill Shepherd!

So it’s a very important book to me.

14 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk

How did you learn your crafts? One of

the many things I learnt from your book

was how important it is to get the grass

in - in good time.

I started out as a farm hand, and then

moved on to being a contract shepherd,

working on different farms all over the

country. But really, I learnt everything as I

went along.

Most of my crafts came through natural

progression, learning to ride a horse

by riding it, learning to clip a sheep by

clipping my first one, learning to work a

dog, by taking the dog out with me for the

first time.

You can only learn what to do by doing it,

you have to get practical on the ground

experience. Nothing comes close to

learning how to be a shepherd, other than

actually doing the work of a shepherd and

it’s not just about learning about sheep,

it’s about learning about the land.

With the grass it starts with the sheep.

You’ve got to have your sheep in good

order - we grow hardy stock through the

winter, so it’s absolutely vital that you grow

your crop well, so they have food to eat

throughout the winter.

What would you like to tell our readers

about your life?

I want people to know that Celebrating the

Seasons is a book about going your own

way. It’s not a blueprint for how you should

live your life, it simply says this is what we

do as a family this is how we do it, feel free

to follow the recipes, or do them your own

way. I want people to not let themselves to

be stereotyped, to know that all things are

achievable if you really want to do it. So

many people said you won’t have time to


a book,

you won’t


that. But

I believe

you can do


you just

have to

start doing

it. If you

want to

write a



writing. I

got an E

in GCSE English, and this is my

fifth book. Anything is possible.

Celebrating the Seasons with The

Yorkshire Shepherdess by Amanda Owen

is available from Pan Macmillan, £20.

Meet the real life elasti-boy

with a rare condition that

leaves him extremely bendy -

whose mum describes him as a

'little superhero' for dealing

with the pain it causes...


“With all the stuff he goes through daily, he’s a

little superhero, I’m so proud to be his mum.”


Wilson was 10 years old when they

first approached bibic for support.

They deliver therapeutic programmes

to children and young adults with

developmental and neurological

difficulties. His mum, Julie-Anne

suspected that Wilson had Autism

Spectrum Disorder and Ehlers-Danlos

Syndrome, which affects the body’s

connective tissue. At four years old

Wilson was diagnosed with hypermobility

- the ability to move joints beyond the

normal range of movement - which

causes him great pain.

Julie-Anne said: “I didn’t know what to

think, I didn’t even know what it was.

I noticed his legs bent backwards and

weren’t straight. He’d ask ‘Why am I so

bendy?’ - We now say it’s his special

superpower however some days it’s that

bad, he can’t walk up the stairs.”

Wilson said: “My bones feel horrible, and

I need a wheelchair sometimes.”

His conditions stop him doing things

most other children do, such as playing

football which Wilson said he ‘would

really love to do.’ But “I’m ill all the time.

It’s not fair.”

Julie-Anne said: “We’ve approached

medical professionals but had no luck.

During lockdown we also couldn’t see

anyone, I spoke to six different doctors

in a year-and-a-half and was tired of

constantly repeating myself. It took so

long to get any help, that’s why we turned

to bibic, after being recommended we

reached out to them.”

Wilson’s therapist, Jess, completed a

‘very emotional’ wellbeing assessment

with him. Wilson was happy to take part,

however his demeanour changed from

this happy boy to very reserved. When

answering when he ‘felt like crying’,

Wilson said ‘right now’ and broke down

in tears because of the way he felt about

himself. Wilson gets a lot of anxiety. He

struggled socialising and couldn’t deal

with or control his emotions, leading to


Wilson said: “being like this makes life

hard in every way. My senses are on

overdrive, it’s horrible and depressing.”

Julie-Anne has managed alone for four

years without any help or support until

now, due to Wilson’s separation anxiety,

she’s not had any time to herself, and

said ‘I wouldn’t want to, but every parent

needs a break.’

“Getting the support from bibic, I felt

relief, like a weight was lifted off my


bibic provided a tailored therapeutic

programme to help manage Wilson’s

behaviour, emotions, and difficulties.

Julie-Anne added: “With bibic’s support,

I felt like I finally had everything I needed

to get the help that Wilson had been

waiting so long for. bibic has opened up a

lot of doors for Wilson, it was a relief that

someone believed us. Because of bibic,

people are now finally listening to us.”

Doctors have now referred Wilson to

other specialists after reading bibic’s

report, Wilson’s now working with an

occupational therapist and improving his

speech and language.

Wilson now has access to respite care to

help him socialise more and do activities.

Julie-Anne said: “The report helped

no end, and it helped to get Wilson an

Educational Health Care Plan, which we

had been trying to get for four years, as

well as other support which we had been

fighting so long for.

Through bibic’s support, Wilson now has

more awareness and notices the build up

of his emotions, he is able to manage and

understand his behaviour, express how he

is feeling, and accepts help from others.

He now identifies when a meltdown is

coming and will say ‘help me’.”

“I now understand Wilson’s feelings more

and how to cope and deal with his needs

too. bibic’s made us look to the future

with more hope which is so much brighter

now. I’m proud of the boy he’s growing

up to be. He’s loving and funny - after

all he’s been through, he still comes out


Wilson explained: “Having problems is

hard. I need a lot of help and care, but it

makes me unique so that’s cool. I wants

to go back to school to make lots of

friends.” And when he grows up he wants

to be an emergency services call handler.

Julie-Anne said: “I think this is because

he wants to help people like they have

helped him. We were stuck with no help

for so long and would still be stuck if we

hadn’t received bibic’s support, it makes

a massive difference to people’s lives,

they have helped us get the support and

help Wilson needs for his future.”

bibic receive no government funding, to

help others like Wilson, please donate

now via bibic’s website:


www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 15



We chat with Head Chef at Keepers

Kitchen and Bar, Kane Edwards, to find

out what makes him tick. We also delve

in to what we can expect to see on the

menu this Christmas...

Firstly, let’s get straight into it; what

made you want to train to become a

chef? Have you always had a love of


As far back as I can remember I’ve

always really loved cooking and, so

naturally, I wanted to become a chef. A

lot of our family get togethers involve

huge amounts of food! Everyone

gathered in the Kitchen cooking or other

family members bringing food with them

for us to enjoy. My mother has always

been the family cook and a wonderful

host for everyone. She is a big reason

why I love to cook! Growing up I watched

her bring pleasure to everyone else with

her cooking. It’s the creative nature of

cooking that I love, the simplicity of

taking just a few ingredients and making

something tasty!

Do you have a favourite festive dish?

I think it’s all the sweet dishes around

Christmas time that I love, like stollen and

mince pies. The classics!

What would you say is your favourite

ingredient, one that you couldn’t live


Everything from my spice shelf! I was

brought up on lots of spicy foods, from

my mums pakistani foods, and my dad’s

Bajan roots, I don’t think my taste buds

could live without some heat!

When you aren’t working hard in the

kitchen, do you have any hobbies?

I normally spend my days just relaxing

with my partner or I’ll take my dog out for

a walk and listen to some music.

With Christmas just around the corner,

what can we expect to see on the

menu at Keepers Kitchen and Bar this


We’ve all worked really hard to make our

Christmas menu a bit different from the

usual and have some fun with the classic

dishes. Our ethos is to provide sanctuary

amid a hive of activity and our food needs

to reflect this; so alongside our twist on

the classic Christmas Dinner, you’ll find

our Christmas pizza with sprouts and our

turkey burger with all the trimmings! Why

not try something different this Christmas.

Keepers Kitchen & Bar

ibis Bridgwater, Woodlands Court

Business Park, Bristol Road,

Bridgwater TA64FJ

Email: hb670@accor.com

Tel: 07767 656298

Website: www.ibis-bridgwater.com

Follow @ibisbridgwaterkeepers






Porchetta makes a wonderful alternative to Turkey

for your festive centrepiece. Porchetta originates

from Italy and is a rolled joint of pork belly stuffed

full of fragrant herbs. It is slow cooked for soft

tender meat but still with beautiful crispy crackling

on the outside. Serve this Porchetta alongside

rosemary roast potatoes and fresh sautéed greens.

Serves: 6 people

Prep time: 20 minutes, plus chilling overnight

Cook time: 2 hours 30 minutes


2kg pork belly, boneless

2 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, finely diced

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 tbsp fennel seeds

1 lemon, zested

50g pistachios, finely chopped

10g sage, finely chopped

15g parsley, finely chopped

50g fresh breadcrumbs

1 tbsp Maldon salt


Begin by prepping your pork. Score the skin of the pork

belly with a knife in lines at an angle across the whole skin,

then place in the fridge uncovered overnight – this will help

dry out the moisture in the skin and ensure you have super

crispy crackling.

Meanwhile you can make the stuffing for the porchetta. In

the olive oil lightly fry the onion with a pinch of Maldon salt

for 5 minutes until softened. Then add the crushed garlic

and fennel seeds and fry for another 2 minutes. Remove

from the heat and tip into a bowl to cool. Once cooled

add the lemon zest, chopped pistachios, sage, parsley,

breadcrumbs and season with Maldon salt and cracked

black pepper. Mix well and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 200C°.

Once you are ready to cook your pork remove from the

fridge. Place it on a board skin side down, and then cover

the flesh with your stuffing mixture. Using butchers string

carefully roll your meat and bind together in 3 or 4 places

tightly to keep it in a roll.

Place the rolled joint onto a baking tray and drizzle the skin

with olive oil, rubbing it in and then sprinkle liberally with

Maldon salt. Place the tray into your preheated oven for 30

minutes until the crackling is crispy and golden. Then turn

your oven down to 180C° and cook for a further 2 hours. If

the crackling begins to look a little too dark, then you might

want to cover it with some foil.

After the cooking time remove your porchetta from the oven

and rest for 20 minutes until ready to serve!

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 17







Lobster, prawns and crayfish are often considered

delicacies for a special occasion, so this BBQ recipe with

smoky siracha mayonnaise and herbed butter is perfect

for a showstopping Christmas feast.

Loved by professional chefs and home cooks the world over,

Maldon Salt has been hand harvested by the same family since

1882. It’s unique pyramid flakes and tactile texture continues

to inspire chefs and cooks to this day. The choice of the

passionate and the adventurous to elevate flavours and create the


Serves: 6 people

Prep time: 10 minutes

Cook time: 15 minutes


2 lobster, sliced in half lengthways

450g king prawns

300g crayfish

150g unsalted butter, softened

1 tsp Maldon salt

Cracked black pepper

10g parsley, finely chopped

10g coriander, finely chopped

2 lemons, halves

100g mayonnaise

1 tbsp siracha


Begin by mixing together the herb butter for your seafood. In a

small bowl mix together the softened butter with Maldon salt,

cracked black pepper, the chopped parsley and coriander. Set


The perfect way to cook your seafood is on a hot BBQ, however

if you don’t have one then a griddle pan will work too. Make sure

it has reached a medium to high temperate, and start by grilling

your lobster halves. Cook flesh side down on the griddle until

the meat has turned pink and has some lovely charring on it.

The shells will turn orangey pink too, and this is when you know

your lobster are cooked. Do the same with the king prawns and

crayfish, although these will take less time to cook.

While your seafood is cooking, it is also nice to griddle some

lemon to serve alongside. Simply add your lemon halves cut

side down onto the grill and allow them to cook and char for 3


Once your seafood is all cooked, pile onto a large serving platter

and using a pastry brush, brush all across the flesh with your

delicious herb butter – letting it melt in. Place your griddled lemon

onto the serving platter too.

In a small bowl mix together the mayonnaise and siracha. Serve

this alongside the platter of BBQ seafood and allow everyone to

tuck in!

18 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk



Emily Baker takes in ultimate luxury

in the inimitable Maldives


t’s difficult to write about the Maldives

without descending into clichés - it

is every bit as beautiful as you

imagined, the ocean suites with their

glass floor hatches are equal parts

luxurious and mesmerising, and of course

the combination of sand, sea and allinclusivity

really are a winner - so, I’ll try

and limit myself to only using the word

crystalline a handful of times, but what

can I tell you that you don’t already know?

I think I could start with the journey -

though travelling is my bread and butter,

long haul can test even the most excited

of voyagers. There are a few different

routes to the mainland of Male, but for

those looking to fly in the lap of luxury

(and if you’re heading to the Maldives,

who isn’t) then Qatar Airways is the

best choice - with a short layover in the

ultra-plush Doha airport, it’s enough to

make the journey an event, rather than

a task. Their internationally-celebrated

Qsuite experience is unlike any other

I’ve experienced in the air - your own

private suite with partitioned doors offers

ambient mood lighting, fully lie-flat beds

and generous storage space. You can

open up the space to enjoy meals and a

glass of fizz with your travel party, before

slipping back into ultimate comfort and

privacy. The food is exceptional too -

both on board and in the Doha Business

Class lounge. It’s easy to see why it’s

consistently rated the best in the world.

If you’ve been nervous to travel since the

pandemic, the in-flight team are so highly

professional, you can relax in complete

safety and start your holiday off in the

most wonderful way.

Once in Male, the final leg of the journey

begins - and for us, it was by seaplane.

There is something other-worldly about

seeing this string of atolls from the air for

the first time. The inky-blue sea stretches

out like a vast blanket, punctuated by

bursts of green, framed by the turquoise

necklace of each island’s reef. Even

whilst feeling weary from the long flight, I

pressed myself to the window like a child,

completely mesmerised by the views

below along the 40 minute hop. If you’re

looking for that international-traveller ‘I’ve

made it’ feeling, then arriving by seaplane

has to tick all the boxes.

The welcome on arrival at the spectacular

Sun Siyam Iru Fushi Resort was the

first taste of the the Sun Siyam group’s

trademark hospitality - a gleaming small

army in white uniforms and glowing

smiles awaited, festooning us with flower

garlands and introducing each guest to

their own dedicated villa butler - they

are your go-to whilst on the resort, for

everything from booking restaurant tables

to helping you hitch a ride on one of the

golf buggies that transport guests around

the 52 acre island.

There are a handful of different

accommodation options for guests -

either stays on those quintessential

oceanic villas, decked with their steps

straight into the water, or a series of

beach villas, either with direct access to

the beach or with oceanic views and their

own private infinity pools. Whilst some

of the fixtures and fittings are looking a

little tired in places, the sheer delight of

the location more than makes up for any

shortcomings inside, as does the wealth

of activities, both in the water and out,

available from your doorstep.

This brings me on to my other

assumption - one I think many travellers

make - that the Maldives is a destination

for loved-up couples to fly and flop in

luxury. And whilst there’s definitely scope

for that, I wasn’t overcome by a raft of

couples acting amorously by the pool,

but instead greeted by a huge breadth

of guest profiles - there were, of course,

couples, but also groups of friends on

a girls getaway and families - taking

advantage of the total safety of the

island to let little ones run around freely.

Though, unlike other family-friendly

resorts, the children are seen but not

heard - there’s space for everyone, so

adults can still find their escape. Kids

and adults alike can partake in aquatic

adventures, with guided reef swimming,

“If the term barefoot luxury is

banded about too much, it’s very

much found its true definition here”

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 19

paragliding, and options to learn to dive in the resorts PADI

and DDI Diamond certified diving school.

If the term barefoot luxury is banded about too much,

it’s very much found its true definition here - this is a

place of relaxation, aided by that extra oomph that only

an all-inclusive stay can offer. In all there are 15 venues

for drinking and dining - offering a mixture of worldwide

cuisines. Where the food really shines is in the bevy of

freshly grilled reef fish and Maldivian curries - there are

fine dining options available, but it was the Bamboo

restaurant with its tables in the sand and menus of fresh

salads and Pan-Asian cuisine which really hit the right

notes in the afternoon heat.

Knowing as they do that tourism in these areas have

hugely adverse effects on the local environment, Sun

Siyam as a group continually look for ways to reduce

their footprint. Being an archipelagic state, the Maldives

does rely on a significant array of food imports, but the

group has its own farm island which grows a variety of

produce, limiting the carbon impact. Guests to the resort

can visit too, for a unique farm to plate experience.

I suppose the other big question for everyone tentatively

dipping their toes back into international travel, is, is it

safe? The major advantage of the Maldives is the sheer

space between the islands, meaning that they can isolate

cases as and when they occur. How this landscape will

change as more vaccines are rolled out across the globe

is still unknown, but its clear that each resort is doing their

part. As it currently stands, to change resorts you are still

required to take a PCR test - whilst some might consider

this an unnecessary expense, I think it’s a sensible and

safe practice to make sure you can enjoy your stay fully.

Now, if there is a spa to be found in a resort, you will

generally find me ensconced inside it. Within a humblelooking

bungalow off one of the jungle tracks, lies Iru

Fushi’s - a world-leading spa by French brand Thalgo -

don’t be fooled by initial appearances though - knock on

the heavy black-lacquered doors and you’ll be whisked

into an exotic oasis, where pebble-lined paths snake

through bubbling koi ponds. Massages here are on the

expensive side, but hey, you’re in the Maldives - lean in

to the luxury and enjoy your slice of paradise, it really is

worth it.

I suppose the thing that really sets the tone for any trip,

and indeed the make or break, are the staff within the

resort, and Sun Siyam really do have a spectacularly good

team. Throughout the stay, nothing was too much trouble.

Want a pinch-me romantic dinner on your own stretch

of beach, surrounded by the twinkle of candles? You’ve

got it. In our little quintet of ladies holidaying together, we

mentioned we would like to have a meditation session

on the beach - what we got was a heart shape hand-dug

into the sand, punctuated with tea lights and frangipani

flowers, with yoga mats rolled out and a selection of oils

from the spa to aid relaxation. This beautiful scene was all

the work of our dedicated butlers and could not have been

more special. This attention to detail extends everywhere -

even my own very British sensibilities about having a butler

were eased, as the service they offered was completely

unobtrusive and very intuitive.

There’s not much I can say that you might not already

know, but that shouldn’t be a reason to stop you getting

into the Maldivian groove and discovering it for yourself -

flawless hospitality, great food, a wealth of activities and

the unrelenting joy of the location, I think Sun Siyam could

make even the most cynical resort-snob fall under its spell.


20 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk




Sun Siyam Iru Fushi Maldives - 5

7 nights from £2719 pp (1 Nov’21 – 16

Dec’21) , +£400 pp (11 Jan’22 – 31 Mar’22)

Includes return Qatar Airways flights from

London Heathrow, Deluxe Beach Villa (lead

in room category), All Inclusive, domestic

flight & speed boat transfers. Includes a

booking discount - saving over £1560 per

couple. Prices are per person based on a

twin/double share for travel on selected

departure dates from November’21 –

March’22 | www.southalltravel.co.uk


Sun Siyam Iru Fushi Maldives - 5

7 nights from £6279 pp (1 Nov’21 – 16

Dec’21) , +£400 pp (11 Jan’22 – 31 Mar’22)

Includes return Qatar Airways flights from

London Heathrow, Deluxe Beach Villa (lead

in room category), All Inclusive, domestic

flight & speed boat transfers. Includes a

booking discount - saving over £3340 per

couple. Prices are per person based on a

twin/double share for travel on selected

departure dates from November’21 –

March’22 | www.southalltravel.co.uk

Qatar Airways

You can book flights directly with Qatar

Airways online at www.qatarairways.com

Please be sure to check any travel

requirements for your journey ahead of


www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 21



We speak to Julia Kendell, interiors and

decorating expert from ITV’s ’60 Minute Makeover’

and ‘Rebuild Our Home’ and spokesperson for The

National Homebuilding & Renovating Show...








Yes absolutely, the kitchen has had

to really take the strain in the past 18

months and now more than ever my

clients are eager to find ways to ensure

their new kitchen spaces are flexible

enough to cope with whatever might be

round the corner.

The design process starts with

understanding my client’s functional

needs for the room, both now and as far

into the future as we can determine (after

all, a good quality kitchen should last

20-30 years). My design principles centre

on wellbeing in the home and creating

spaces that fully support the family to

ensure everyone can be organised and in

harmony with one another. This involves

spending time working out the each

individual’s daily movements around

the kitchen, their needs and what they

enjoy doing. If there’s a keen baker in

the household, I will suggest a dedicated

‘baking cabinet’ where everything

you need is in one place, stand-mixer

plugged in ready for use and no excuses

not to achieve ‘Star Baker!’ I believe

good design ensures we can be the best

versions of ourselves and take obstacles

out of the way of our daily successes.







It sounds obvious, but a total de-clutter,

removing as much as possible from a

room to be able to view the room with

‘fresh-eyes’ is a great start to make

meaningful changes. One of the simplest

yet most effective improvements is

to increase the levels of daylight into

the home. Texture, whether fabrics or

carpeting absorbs a huge amount of

daylight and it can be transformational to

swap out curtains for shutters/ blinds and

hard flooring such as engineered wood

to replace carpet. Instantly the rooms will

feel larger and brighter and any increase

in daylight in the home can only improve

your mood and wellbeing.




Areas that receive the most use should

be prioritised in the overall budget. Most

kitchen units are well constructed these

days so choosing an affordable unit with

a good quality worksurface is a good

option. It’s amazing the difference adding

expensive handles can make to uplifting

an otherwise ‘standard’ kitchen. I caution

my clients to think carefully about their

appliance choices too. It’s very easy to

get excited about the latest gadget, but

with appliances a large proportion of

the overall cost of a kitchen, be realistic

about how useful an appliance will be.

Do you really need an oven with 42






Without doubt, the most important lesson

is to design holistically and to engage

all of the senses. It’s not enough just to

create a pretty, ‘instagrammable’ room.

The way we experience our homes and

workplaces is crucial to our mental

health and performance and shouldn’t be

underestimated. From choosing a colour

palette to reflect your personality and

emotional needs to providing good air

quality, creating a harmonious space that

‘feels’ and functions as good as it looks is

key to good design.







There is still a strong appetite for openplan

living as it provides the space,

light and connection to one another we

all crave. That said, to mitigate some

of the issues with open-plan such as

noise, privacy issues and cooking-smell

transference from the kitchen, ‘brokenplan’

is becoming a useful design tool.

Broken-plan essentially incorporates

vertical divides within the open-plan

space using glazing, open-backed

shelving, or sliding doors to delineate

areas without closing off the visual impact

of the space. This is also a great way to

bring some architectural interest to an

otherwise ‘large box’ that can too often

feel like an airport lounge! I think anyone

with shares in garden offices will have a

good year ahead…



Houzz are reporting a huge increase in

interest in dedicated activity spaces such

as art rooms, home bars, home gyms and

cinema rooms. I am very excited to see

this as it shows that we are choosing to

design our interests and passions into our

homes. It’s refreshing to feel such a sense

of optimism when chatting with clients

and I am working with warmer colour

palettes and being asked to incorporate

planting and natural texture into room

schemes. There seems to be a continued

need to connect with nature after the past

18 months and I’m loving it!

Julia Kendell will be the design expert

at the Farnborough Homebuilding &

Renovating Show, 15-16 January 2022


22 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


that means a little more



sustainable, wellness-based

gift boxes - customisable and

beautiful, from £10

available from hauslife.co.uk









TEL: 01536 669630

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 23

Tough on all Pathogens


Yet skin pH Neutral, Gentle to Skin

Reasons to




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Proudly Supporting

because Leucillin is alcohol free! It’s

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matches our natural pH meaning kind

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At home or away, Leucillin is a

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to; Red, Sore, Itchy skin, Minor Cuts

and Grazes, Bites, Stings and Burns.

suitable for all ages and skin types including

highly sensitive, ears and eyes. Leucillin is

your germ protection, antiseptic care and

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300x more effective than most sanitisers YET Leucillin

is passed by the Organic Soil Association, has recyclable packaging, is cruelty free and vegan


Available in stores and online

For promotional 500ml product offer please visit: www.leucillin.co.uk/promotions



For People AND our Pets, Leucillin is a

clever, reliable and affordable solution for

cleansing and sanitising skin safely including

your face! Leucillin removes germs without

drying skin, so however species diverse your

family unit is, Leucillin has you covered.

putting our pets first

We may feel as if we have had ‘information

overload’ when it comes to germ

prevention and protection, but sometimes

a product comes along that demands our

attention - enter Leucillin. This is a skin

health product for pets that is proving to

be a product which all of us may well be

putting in our first aid chests very soon.

We spoke to Georgina Bashforth (pictured

right) about the product and its exciting


First of all, in layman’s terms – what is


Leucillin is a clever antiseptic applied to

the skin topically to protect against harmful

germs. Leucillin is a revolutionary fresh new

take on what an antiseptic is and can be

capable of.

Leucillin mimics the body’s own immune

system, providing you a powerful solution

which delivers the ultimate shield in

topical skin protection against harmful

pathogens. Leucillin’s unique formulation

does not contain any alcohol, steroids or

antibiotics, it is the natural choice for safe

skin sanitising.

Our pets our so important to us, how

is Leucillin used and what specific

applications is it effective for?

Leucillin has a great reputation for safety

and efficacy, supported by pet healthcare,

veterinary and grooming industries,

this year. It has been awarded human

approvals and begun an exciting new

chapter in healthcare.

Furthermore it can be safely applied in

any topical application where the skin,

ears and eyes need care, whether broken,

red, sore, inflamed, cuts, stings, bites

or grazes, Leucillin’s powerful antiseptic

properties eradicate germs on contact

creating the perfect environment for rapid


For children, as well as our pets, it’s

“Ouch Free” formula is kind, it has been

developed to match the natural pH of skin

so no more wincing on that grazed knee.

It seems to be a very gentle solution

to a number of particularly stubborn

problems - can it be used long-term?

Leucillin achieves an unbeatable

99.99999% reduction in bacteria on

contact, but how does that compare with

the 99.99% which we think is good? Well;

it’s a massive 10’000 times better!

Fast effective pathogen reduction means

no resistance therefore long-term usage is

always effective and no harmful ingredients

means Leucillin is always safe!

And finally, how else can it be used and

what are your hopes for the product

going forward?

Our goal is to help alleviate the dependence

on antibiotics and pharmaceutical

intervention in the area of germ protection,

for a more natural, safe, non-invasive and

most importantly effective alternative.

During the pandemic Leucillin has been

proven effective against all coronaviruses

including SARS-CoV-2 topically and

has been used by animal care industries

including Police Dog Handler units for

reducing risk.

We have also recently teamed up with The

Humanimal Trust founded by Professor

Noel Fitzpatrick - aka The Supervet, we’re

excited to be supporting mental health and

raising money for ONE Medicine, so that

humans and animals can benefit equally

from all medical progress.



Make it a resolution!







www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 25


hit list





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 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.


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 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!


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).


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?



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.

Boston Fern from £9.99, hortology.co.uk;

Hathai Cushion, £34, hauslife.co.uk

26 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk

Independent Living in a Supported Environment


High quality accommodation - single and double bedroom flats

Attractive communal areas

Delightful, well maintained garden

Delicious home cooked meals provided daily

Supportive & dedicated team of staff

Organised events and activities on offer

Help with cleaning & laundry

24/7 emergency helpline

If you would like to come and take a look

round please call Sam the House manager on:

01823 257819

40 Northfield Court, Pollards Way,

Taunton TA1 1AD



Registered Charity No: 253429







www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 27

Acorn Solicitors are a friendly, local,

family run firm based in Taunton

and Street. We are well known

for our specialist knowledge and

personal style of working.

Aesthetic Nurse Practitioner,

Bryony Clements, provides

safe, natural, yet noticeable,

non-surgical procedures, that

compliment and enhance an

individual’s facial features.

Enhancing your natural beauty

Wills and Trusts

Powers of Attorney




Notary Public

Elderly Client Matters

Commercial Property

Dermal fillers to enhance and treat:

Lips • Jawline/Chin • Cheek/Mid Face

Tear Trough • Non-surgical Rhinoplasty

Anti-wrinkle Treatment • Fat Dissolving

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We have no hidden charges or costs - we

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Dermal fillers provide instant results that are natural and

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Clinics held in Curry Rivel and Yeovil

07540933393 | thecountryclinic.co.uk



28 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk


Allowing older people to live where they want to live

Imagine you’re an older person in your

70s, approaching your later years and

perhaps in need of more support soon,

but still with so much to give, so many

talents to unlock, so many friends to

make. You’re thinking about moving

from the family home you’ve lived in

for years to somewhere which provides

security and care if and when you need

it, but which also allows you to keep

your independence and connections to

the local community, and which has a

range of activities and facilities to keep

you busy.

It’s this middle ground, this golden

mean, combining independence with

care and support, which housing-withcare

settings across the country are

offering to older people in increasing

numbers. Sometimes called retirement

communities, retirement villages or extra

care housing, these settings give older

people the opportunity to rent or own

a flat or apartment, on a site with 24/7

staffing, high-quality care provision if

needed, and facilities like restaurants,

bars, cafes, gyms, activity rooms and

much more.

While long-standing options for older

people like care homes and traditional

retirement housing will continue to have

a vital place, there is a growing need

for middle options like housing-withcare

which allow older people to stay

independent and healthy for longer.

The evidence is clear: housing-withcare

improves health and well-being,

drastically cuts down hospital and GP

visits, and reduces feelings of loneliness.

Not only do older people themselves

benefit, but so too does the NHS and

whole social care system.

Housing-with-care settings can be in

either rural or urban locations, giving

older people the chance to choose the

lifestyle they want. Often, they are closely

connected with the town centre, and

people of different ages are able to use

the facilities at the retirement community

and mix with older residents. Far from

being ghettos of the elderly, housingwith-care

settings can be hubs of

intergenerational connection.

ARCO’s role as the representative body

for the housing-with-care sector is to help

our members provide the best possible

service to their older residents, and to

ensure the sector thrives and grows in

the way that it should. An important part

of ARCO’s work is helping members

set high standards through the ARCO

Consumer Code, a new edition of

which was launched in September this

year. The code upholds the principles

of transparency and fairness, giving

customers and residents confidence that

housing-with-care operators achieve

high levels of consumer protection in

everything from marketing, sales and

lettings, and resident relations.

Because, ultimately, housing-with-care is

all about the residents. About responding

to the growing demand from older

people for housing options that combine

independent, active living with care

and support if needed. About allowing

residents to live the life that they want

to live.

For further email please visit


www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 29

Putting people first – 30

years of care in Somerset

Travel back in time to 1991, and we were

driving Ford Escorts, eating Pop Tarts and

listening to Queen. In Somerset, something

very significant was also happening in our

communities, as we became the first county

to privatise residential care homes previously

run by the local authority.

Celebrating its 30th anniversary this year, Somerset Care

took over the management of 26 residential care homes from

Somerset County Council in 1991, supporting over 1,000

residents to live the life they choose. Fast forward to today,

and thousands of people have been supported by Somerset

Care’s specialist residential, community, learning disabilities and

dementia support teams.

A lot has changed in 30 years, but many things have also

remained constant.

CEO, Gary Ridewood, reflects on Somerset Care’s story so far:

“A significant milestone always provides the opportunity to look

back – and look forward.

“Flicking back through the archives, the faces may have

changed, but some of the care sector headlines around funding

shortfalls and recruitment could have been written yesterday. The

need to provide care in our communities hasn’t gone away either,

and that tailored support is perhaps needed more now than ever

as we continue to navigate a global pandemic. I cannot thank


our dedicated teams enough for the selfless commitment they

continue to show for those in our care.

“As a not-for-profit company, Somerset Care has grown, had

several new looks, received multiple Royal visitors and moved

offices in the last 30 years, but our ethos remains the same. We

exist to deliver high-quality care for those who need it in our local

communities – whether in our residential care homes or their own

homes. As long as that need is there, we will be here to meet it.

“As we enter the next chapter of Somerset Care’s story, we look

forward to providing the specialist support needed to help even

more people to live the life they choose.”

To find out more about Somerset Care, its history, settings and

services, please visit www.somersetcare.co.uk or call

0800 8174 990.

Established 1991


30 Years of Caring

Somerset Care are proud to have been supporting people

to live the life they choose for the past 30 years. We would

like to say thank you to all of our customers, residents,

employees and the local communities who have been on

this journey with us so far. Here’s to the next 30 years!

0800 817 4990 - www.somersetcare.co.uk

That special

Someṛset Care


30 | www.minervamagazines.co.uk




Our advisers work with you to build a complete

picture of your aspirations alongside the

realities of your financial situation and the

possibilities for the future.


Albert Goodman Chartered Financial Planners is a trading style of Albert Goodman Financial

Planning Limited which is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

The West Country welcomes you to its

newest, most exclusive development.

Located on the edge of the beautiful market town of Bridgwater,

17TH-18TH AUGUST 2019


Somerset and within easy reach of the picturesque Quantock Hills

and the vivid landscapes of Exmoor. Enjoy a relaxing round of golf

at some of the region’s challenging courses or a visit to Chilton

Lakes for fishing, a stroll along the beaches of nearby Burnham-on-

Sea or Minehead, all within easy reach of Chilton Park. Across of the

road will take you to the brand new leisure centre, featuring a gym,

exercise classes, 4 court sports hall, swimming pool and more!

Chilton Park, Chilton Trinity, Somerset TA6 3JW | www.chiltonpark.co.uk | 01278 426005 or 07858 404593

www.minervamagazines.co.uk | 31

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