Welcome to CITYLIFE in Rugeley & Cannock
Chase, a bi-monthly magazine bringing you our pick
of the area’s news, events and stories. Every other
month CITYLIFE in Rugeley & Cannock Chase is
delivered to businesses and homes in Rugeley,
Cannock Chase, Shoal Hill, Ravenhill,
Etchinghill, Slitting Mill, Armitage, Brereton,
Handsacre, Colton, Hawkesyard, Draycott Park
completely free of charge; bringing you the best
that the area has to offer.
Each issue features heritage stories exploring the
rich history of our area, plus competitions,
interviews and the latest in fashion and style.
Got a story or charity event you want to share with
our readership? Think you’ve snapped an image that
captures the spirit of the region? We want to hear
Editor - Kristen Lackajis 07885 380632
Features - Jono Oates 07785 757201
Steve Brown 07740 166497
Rebecca Hill 07970 513144
Mike James 07900 982456
Design - Helen Smith 07967 154187
Citylife In Lichfield Ltd
PO Box 7126 LICHFIELD WS14 4JS
CITYLIFE in Lichfield and CITYLIFE in Rugeley and
Cannock Chase magazines are not connected to any
other publication or publisher, and are wholly owned
by CITYLIFE in Lichfield Ltd.
6 Local News
What's been happening in and
around the area
14 Have a Sustainable
Jess Davanzo shares her
16 Festive Gift Guide
Find the perfect pressie for
friends and family
Citylife's New Website!
We've launched our brand new website
recently to accompany your two
publications. On our site you can find
more information about the magazines,
plus a revamped blog full of local news,
features and competitions!
Designed by InLife Design, based in
Burntwood, we look forward to
welcoming you at
www.citylifeinlichfieldltd.co.uk very soon!
Citylife In Lichfield
Citylife in Lichfield Ltd does not endorse any
business or organisation appearing in these
pages, and the publication of any
advertisement, editorial, event listing or
advertising editorial does not constitute an
endorsement by Citylife in Lichfield Ltd.
Jack Savoretti at
Jack Savoretti is the first artist to
announce dates as part of Forest
Live 2023, the summer concert
series presented by Forestry
Since his initial breakthrough
with BBC Radio 2 airplay in
2006, a succession of crafted
albums has built the Anglo-Italian
singer-songwriter an impressive
career. ‘Written in Scars’ (2014)
and ‘Sleep No More’ (2016)
confirmed his growing
popularity with gold-selling
status and these were
superseded by No 1 albums
‘Singing To Strangers’ (2019) and
‘Europiana’ (2021). A number of
his songs have featured in TV
and film such as ‘Grey’s
Anatomy’, ‘The Vampire Diaries’
and ‘One Tree Hill’.
Forest Live is a major outdoor
live music series that introduces
forests to new audiences in
unique, natural woodland arenas
around the country. Going to a
concert helps Forestry England
create beautiful places for
people to enjoy, run important
conservation projects and keep
growing trees. Last year they
planted some 6.8 million trees,
caring for the nation’s 1,500
woods and forests sustainably
and welcoming 363 million visits
charity Beat the
Cold to help
the ongoing cost
of living crisis and soaring
The energy advice charity has
many support mechanisms to
help and offers energy saving
advice to keep your home
warmer for less. It also offers:
help with energy suppliers
regarding debt; assisting with
energy accounts; helping people
to access and apply for Priority
Payments/Fuel and Foodbank
vouchers; accessing local
authority and government
schemes for applicants to
improve their properties with
insulation, Air Source heat
pumps and Solar PV. Helping
bring down energy costs.
The council has a dedicated
webpage which gives advice, as
well as signposting to agencies
that can help, during this difficult
time. Find out more at
Staffordshire Wildlife Trust
continues its badger vaccination
programme this year as an
alternative to culling these
The vaccination programme,
which originally started in 2013,
costs the wildlife charity about
£5,600 to run per year. The
charity is asking for help from
supporters to raise awareness
and funds to continue their
efforts to vaccinate badgers.
With 25 per cent of the
European badger population
being found in the UK, there is
an international responsibility to
conserve them. The badger
vaccinations reduce the risk of
badger to cattle transmission of
bovine tuberculosis (bTB),
protecting farmer’s livestock and
reducing the need for culling
The Independent Scientific
Group research from the
Randomised Badger Culling Trial
(RBCT) showed that badger
culling can cause the disease to
spread more widely, as the
animals’ territorial boundaries
are disturbed; leading to the
increased movement of badgers.
To support the Trust’s
vaccination programme, visit
w w w . s t a f f s -
The District is
Cannock Chase District is
celebrating six Britain in Bloom
awards across its parks and
Britain in Bloom is Britain's
competition and a tool for
building communities and
tackling local issues together.
Gold awards were given to
Cannock and Hednesford Park,
Elmore Park won silver,
Cannock Stadium and Ravenhill
won silver gilt and Heath Hayes
Park won a bronze award.
The Britain in Bloom criteria
changed for 2022 to encourage
entries to have a positive impact
on the environment. Marks are
awarded for identifying local
environmental issues and ways
in which the issues are targeted
using plants. Judging criteria is
divided into 40% for
horticulture, 30% for
environment and 30% for
The award ceremony took place
on 22nd September and was
attended by Lynn Harley-Biggs,
President of The Friends of
Cannock Stadium Park
(pictured), and the Futures
group from South Staffordshire
College, Cannock Campus
(pictured), which has been
involved in a wide range of tasks
in the local parks.
During National Allotment
Week in August, St Barbara’s
House, sheltered housing
scheme in Rugeley, celebrated
with its annual potato growing
Each tenant had their own pot
to grow potatos and paid a
pound each week, with the
person with the heaviest crop
being the winner.
Wolseley Garden Centre
donated the compost for the
potatos and Plant Manager, Jack
Paterson, and Team Member,
Clare Wood, came along to
judge and weigh the potatos.
The winner was 81 year old
Charlie Keay (pictured), who has
lived at St Barbara’s House for
the last three years. He is going
to put his winnings into the
social funds to help pay towards
entertainment this Christmas.
The Rugeley & District Lions’
Annual Toy Appeal is operating
from 15th November to 16th
December and sees the
organisation collecting new and
unused toys to give to children
who would otherwise go
without at Christmas.
Last year the generous folk of
Rugeley donated 2,000 toys! As
usual, toys must be new or
unused. Drop off points are
Tesco Rugeley, Morrisons
Rugeley, Gymophobics Rugeley,
and Rugeley Community
From October, readers will be
able to place a notice in Citylife
magazine to let others know of
an important event, occasion or
celebration that is taking place.
If you would like to place details
of any births, deaths, marriages
or other occasions, please
contact Rebecca Hill at
07970 513144 or
Notices will consist of a
maximum 50 words, plus an
image, at a cost of £25
(inclusive of VAT).
Local & Community Groups
By Peter Arnold
Members were utterly
captivated by a brilliant talk given
by Darren Priday, Head of
Conservation at the RAF
Museum Cosford. Following 26
years as an RAF aircraft
mechanical engineer, he found his
dream job in 2005 at the Michael
Beetham Conservation Centre
with the task of continuing the
Handley Page Hampden
restoration project. From this, he
was promoted in 2009 to
Deputy Manager of the
Conservation Centre and in
2013 took over as Manager.
A world centre of excellence,
the MBCC’s primary function
includes care, conservation and
restoration of the National
Collection along with the
movement or suspension of
aircraft or large exhibits.
A Fish & Chip Supper will be
held on Friday 18th November
starting at 7pm. For details of
meetings and events contact
Barry Dowell at 01543 503320
or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
By Margaret Bennett
A very entertaining evening
was given to Rugeley WI
members in October by Chris
Austin entitled ‘Into the
Chris, who is a member of the
band Fuego, talked about the
popular group of the late 50s,
The Shadows, and members
were taken back in time with
guitar music from the band’s hits.
During October, Rugeley WI
also visited the Rugeley Food
Bank with donations of food
given by members and helped by
Rugeley WI meets every last
Wednesday in the month at St
Paul’s Community Hall, Rugeley
at 7:30pm. If you would like to
join or want details, contact
either Barbara Johnson on 01889
586855 or Barbara Coppard on
By Kathy Baxter
For the October meeting
Margaret Devey welcomed Kath
Reynolds and her presentation
‘Bringing Up Baby’ exploring the
vast differences in child rearing
back in the 30s, 40s and 50s,
ranging form the help from Dr
Spock’s baby bible through to
sterilisers, glass bottles and terry
cotton nappies. It was interesting
to see how equipment had
changed over the years and we
had many a chuckle over
methods used back in the day.
Kath Reynolds kindly judged
the competition which was
photographs of members when
they were babies. First place
went to Sue Evans, second place
was won by Chris Stinton and
third place went to Celia Wright.
The year will finish with a
Christmas meal at Beau Dessert
golf club on 14th December.
The group meets on the
second Wednesday of each
month at Etchinghill village hall.
To join, or find out more, email
SI Cannock &
By Trish Mellor
Since 2015, Cannock
Soroptimists have enjoyed a
friendship link with SI Port Talbot.
Recently, a special meeting saw
10 members of the Port Talbot
Club, led by their President
Helen, visiting Cannock for a
couple of days, giving members
the chance to meet and get to
know each other!
Local & Community Groups
The two club’s enjoyed a day
out at the National Memorial
Arboretum, arriving in time to
attend the service in the chapel.
A journey on the land train
followed, giving everyone the
chance to see far more than
would have been possible on
foot, along with an informative
Further details about
Soroptimists, the work they do
and how you may be able to join
a meeting can be found on the
club’s website at
or Facebook page
By Alison Cardy
C l u b s ,
consisted of a
three-course meal, followed by
entertainment from a talented
artist and author, Geoff Tristram
‘a lad from Quarry bank’ in the
Black Country, who made his
own music with chuckles from
Chairman Sheila Burrows
closed the meeting, giving warm
thanks and flowers.
Retired or semi-retired,
professional or business ladies
meet the first Thursday of each
month at Chase Golf Club at 12
noon. A meal and fellowship is
shared, with speakers on
interesting topics and
opportunities to take part in
outings and other activities. New
members are always welcome,
annual membership is £16 and a
two-course lunch £18.
further information contact
Barbara on 01889 882166 or
Sheila on 07814102767.
By Kath Parsons
attend a very
s p e c i a l
as we won not
one but two
year. The Press Report Shield
competition was won by myself,
and the second award was the
Freda Houldcroft Trophy for the
best WI programme.
There is much to look forward
to in our autumn/winter
programme. We have monthly
craft sessions and members are
currently busy knitting Santa’s
and Snowmen for the trade tale
at the popular ‘Tinsel &
Trimmings’ evening on 2nd
There is also an annual trip to
the Pantomime at The
Hippodrome, Afternoon Tea at
Hoar Cross Hall, trips to a
Christmas Market and our
Christmas Party to look forward
Visitors and prospective
members will be given a very
warm welcome. For further
By Jill Gooch
T h e
very busy at
early, or decorating cakes, or
making puddings, but just as
important an ingredient of our
celebrations: we made our own
The speaker at our meeting in
November will be from Silverline
who will explain to us the
importance of will making and
how to ensure that our wishes
for our heirs are properly
carried out after we have gone.
Our meetings are held on the
second Thursday of each month
at 10.30am at St Luke’s Church
Centre. Visitors are always
welcome and details can be
found on our Facebook page at
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Full t&cs on page 34.
By Jess Davanzo
‘Tis the season of giving, but sometimes our
well-intentioned generosity has the opposite
effect on our resources. Unless you’re living
under a rock, you have heard the buzz around
needing to live more sustainably. Whilst it can
feel overwhelming, there are a multitude of little
things we could all do that can collectively have
a big impact! Particularly at a time known for
excess, little tweaks can make huge difference.
This isn’t to say you must go into Grinch
mode, on the contrary! Some of the best ways
to be “greener” can add to the holiday spirit, not
detract from it!
Is it necessary? It looks beautiful, but millions
of rolls get thrown away every year and much of
it is non-recyclable (especially shiny/glittery
kinds!) For something that is torn and discarded
quickly there must be a better way and there is!
Why not use natural brown paper that is
recyclable? Or even newspaper? This can look
beautiful especially when tied with natural string
or biodegradable ribbon. You could even
incorporate nature, using holly leaves, to
decorate the packages. Another alternative is
old fabric or reusable bags. It might sound
strange, but it can truly look lovely and make a
big difference. Plus, it saves money!
Give gifts that support a sustainable lifestyle
and you can encourage positive change. Think
reusable with things like lunch boxes, water
bottles and bags that are made in a conscious
way. Lots of sustainable gift companies give back
to earth friendly and ethical initiatives. I’m
pleased that we carry lots of ethical, cruelty free
and sustainable gifts at www.earthystuff.co.uk
that are not only eco themselves, but a portion
of the profit goes into investing in the planet
and people friendly projects. Also, trees are
planted with every order! So, for guilt free
giving, look for local sustainable companies that
They’re an integral part of the festive season
but are often made from harmful materials! Be
more sustainable and turn your decorating into
a fun foraging exercise by getting out in the
fresh air and collecting holly or pinecones to
make features on the mantle or table, or make
your own ornaments - just avoid glitter and
tinsel! If you already have a plastic tree, keep
using it! It’s better to keep using one you
already have than to buy a new one, even if the
new one is more eco!
A simple thing to do is to buy local and
seasonally. This not only supports the earth but
helps your community and local businesses. If
you get your vegetables from a local farm shop
or market, not only are you supporting your
community and preventing unnecessary
transport, but you are going to get tastier more
Sure we want a more sustainable way of living
but that doesn’t just mean the planet, we must
protect ourselves too! With the recent rises in
the cost of living, the pressure to overspend and
buy things for the sake of it doesn’t help with
our personal sustainability either. The season of
giving often comes at a cost to our mental
health and it shouldn’t! The most valuable thing
we have is our time, so let go of the pressures
of buying presents and focus on being present
with the ones you love!
Jewellery With Life
This Textured Star Pendant is the perfect gift for
the super stars in your life. Made using recycled
silver, it comes in your choice of textures, finish
and length of silver chain. Priced at £26. You can
find more beautiful pieces made in Staffordshire by
Emily at www.jewellerywithlife.co.uk.
Mercia Spirits Lab
Treat your loved one to the perfect G&T this
Christmas! Gift hamper includes Mercia's
Signature Gin, a gin glass, and a choice of mixers!
Priced at £59 and available from Mercia Spirits Lab,
Bishton Hall, Bellamour Lane, Rugeley.
Tel: 01889 529291. www.merciawhisky.co
Beautifully unique and sustainable, these elephant
dung notebooks are the perfect quirky gift! They
are Fair Trade and lovely for use as a journal or
everyday notebook. The elephant dung covers are
made from 25% recycled paper and 75% elephant
dung – yes really! The ultimate in recycling! Priced
at £11. Available online at Earthystuff.co.uk or
Based on an original watercolour painting by S&P
Watercolours, this Shugborough Hall 1,000-piece
jigsaw puzzle features a central ‘boy and swan’
fountain and clipped golden yews. A fabulous gift
idea featuring an iconic Staffordshire landmark.
Priced at £18.99. Available from S&P Watercolours,
The Courtyard, Bishton Hall, Wolseley Bridge,
ST17 0XN. Email: email@example.com.
A great range of gift ideas for Christmas, including
a wide range of watches, such as the one pictured
which has an RRP of £100, but is priced at only
£30 at MW Jewellery, based in Brewery Street
Shopping Centre, Rugeley.
It wouldn't be Christmas without a spot of fizz!
Why not try something different this year, like this
sparkling rhubarb wine, or rhubling, as it's known?
Made using the traditional method to create
natural bubbles, rhubling is the perfect, light fizz to
enjoy with a loved one. Available from Clive's
Wines of Burntwood. Tel: 07972 269 620.
Use code CWCL10 to get 10%
off at Clive's Wines!
With the ability to drill through wood, steel and
masonry with ease, the Makita Rotary Cordless
Hammer Drill is perfect for those New Year DIY
projects that we’re all itching to start. When in
rotation mode, the chisel can rotate an impressive
full 360 degrees, with 40 different lock positions.
Priced at £197.28 and available from Tippers.
Lichfield, Europa Way, WS14 9TZ
Check out the fabulous Christmas range in store
at Nib Nabs Menswear in Brewery Street
Shopping Centre, Rugeley. Gift ideas include
wallets, cufflinks, bank card holders and more, with
prices from just £6.99.
Novelty draught excluders, in different styles,
priced from £38 and available from Paul Martyn,
Heart of the Country Shopping Village, Swinfen.
Tel: 01543 481592.
Allen Brown Jewellery
Silver earrings with black rhodium and 18ct yellow
gold plate. Priced at £157 and available from Allen
Brown Jewellery located at Heart of the Country
Shopping Village, Swinfen, Lichfield, WS14 9QR.
Tel: 01543 481 948.
The Deer Park
Specialising in sustainably-sourced tea grown in Sri
Lanka, Doyen is a local company which aims to
minimise its carbon footprint throughout its
production processes. This tea advent calendar
features two teabags behind each door from the
range, which includes green teas, herbal and
fruit blends. Priced at £29.95 and available from The
Deer Park, Maker Lane, Hoar Cross, DE13 8QR.
The true scent of Christmas! St Eval Christmas
Candles are available in Inspiritus, Orange &
Cinnamon, Winter Thyme. Priced at £13.45 and
available from Needwood Living, High Street,
Tutbury, or Main Street, Alrewas.
Brewery Street Shopping Centre, Brewery Street, Rugeley, WS15 2DY.
A Window on the Past
We are all conscious of the rising
cost of utility bills, so it seems
appropriate to look at gas,
electricity and water supply in Rugeley over
the next few issues of City Life. Services that
nowadays we all consider essential.
Older readers will remember growing up in
homes lit by oil lamps and candles. Heating was
by an open fire, which also heated the adjoining
oven, the kettle and the flat irons. Water for
laundry and baths was heated in the copper in
the scullery. If you were on mains water, there
was probably only one tap - over the sink also in
the scullery. The wireless (not radio) ran on dry
batteries or an accumulator, and the
gramophone was of the wind-up variety.
This issue we are looking at the gas industry.
Gas first came to Rugeley in 1827 when Thomas
Hatfield set up a small plant at his foundry, but it
was in 1847 the Rugeley Gas Company was
1. An early gas bill issued to the
Churchwardens, presumably for lighting St
2. A 1921 bill for an extra light fitting at
Churchdale Villa in Wolseley Road for Mr
3. In 1929, Rugeley Gas Company reduced
their prices to "encourage extended use of gas
for domestic heating and cooking."
4. Rugeley gas works in Forge Road
photographed in august 1957.
5. Taken in February 2006 this photo shows
what was then one of the last surviving buildings
of the old gas works in Forge Road. It was
awaiting planning permission for demolition.
Please see the Landor (local history) Society
website www.landorsocietyrugeley.uk for our
autumn/ winter programme of events.
Continued on page 22
By Harry Thornton
“What happened to Buntings Ales, on sale here” is the question posed
alongside Mr Devall’s photo (see picture) of Rugeley’s old Pear Tree Inn in
the Mercury 22nd May 1997.
In 1926, its landlords were Mr Edwin and Mrs Margaret Devall. The
photograph shows them standing proudly outside the Pear Tree Inn.
In its heyday, the firm of “Charles Bunting Ltd, Brewers and Wine and
Spirit Merchants” of High Street, Uttoxeter, was supplying over 80 public
houses. In addition to having its products available at the Pear Tree Inn in
the 1920s, the firm was the tenant of the Ash Tree and the Red Lion at
Brereton at around that time – and possibly had connections with other
Buntings was founded in 1895 when it took over an already old
established Uttoxeter brewery. In 1929 it sold out to Parker’s Brewery of
Burslem and brewing soon afterwards was stopped at Uttoxeter. Parkers
was taken over by Ind Coope in 1933 and the brewery buildings, which
dominated a central area of Uttoxeter, mostly became a Council Depot;
although premises, still trading under the name of Charles Bunting Ltd,
were retained on the site until at least 1940.
The brewery’s huge malthouse was demolished in 1968 to be replaced
by The Maltings shopping precinct, a car park and Uttoxeter bus station.
The Pear Tree Inn, Rugeley 1926 - Landlords
Mr and Mrs Edwin Devall.
Rugeley’s Pear Tree Inn
*The late Harry Thornton was a member
of the Landor (local history) Society.
Hats Off to the Chef!
By Kristen Lackajis
Standing on its own surrounded by stunning ancient
woodland, The Deer Park at Hoar Cross boasts a wellstocked
farm shop, on-site butcher, and a range of artisan
gifts. As well as this, there is The Linhay, the farm’s very
own café-cum-restaurant which serves everything from a
hearty breakfast or a sophisticated luncheon, to an
afternoon tea or piece of homemade cake! We were,
therefore, delighted to be invited along to try the new
Designed by innovative Head Chef, Craig, the dishes on
The Linhay’s new menu are anything but average! Classic
with a contemporary twist would be a fitting description
and one thing is for sure – Craig is an artist when it comes
to the kitchen! Capable of marrying flavours to create
something innovative, yet utterly delicious, Craig works
with local produce and the farm’s own home-grown fruit
and veg, to bring a taste of the countryside to your plate.
I opted for the Twelve-Hour Braised Shin of English
Beef in a Cannelloni, and my goodness, what a feast for
both the tastebuds and the eyes! Served with creamy
spring onion mash, parsnip puree, wilted kale and a Blythe
Brewery Ruby Mild beer sauce, this dish ticked all of the
boxes. Meat that was juicy and literally melted in the
mouth was combined with the sweetness of the parsnips
and the slight bitter tang of the beer jus. Completely
divine with bursts of flavour in every
My guest chose the Fillet of Pan-
Fried Seabass with wild mushroom
and spinach sauce, served with
tagliatelle. The meaty fish was cooked
to perfection and the nutty mushroom
sauce combined the taste of the ocean with the deep,
earthy flavours of the countryside. Stunning! Despite
being quite full after substantial portions, we were
intrigued by Craig's incredible flavour combinations and,
eager for more, we decided to try a dessert! I went for a
Warm Chocolate Brownie with Nutella and Bluebells
Clotted Cream Ice Cream, and my guest ordered a
Blackberry, Vanilla and Ginger Cheesecake. Both delicious,
both unique and both incredibly beautiful, they were the
ideal sweet treat to round off what was an astonishing
The Linhay, whilst it may serve breakfasts and cake, is by
no means your standard farm shop ‘café’. Instead, it is a
foodie’s heaven, with modern British dishes, conjured up
by the magician that is Craig, served in a beautiful
countryside setting, and well worth a visit!
Find The Deer Park at Makers Lane, Hoar Cross,
Burton Upon Trent, DE13 8QR. www.deerpark.farm
Saturday 19th November
Christmas Oratorio – JS Bach
Beggar’s Oak Clog Dancers
Bach’s famous Christmas Oratorio was intended
for performance in church during the Christmas
season, and what better venue to hear this
masterpiece than the magnificent setting of
Lichfield Cathedral. A special concert to
celebrate Paul Spicer’s 30 years as Music
Director of this renowned Choir. They are joined
by the fabulous baroque style orchestra and a
superb line up of soloists.
Venue: Lichfield Cathedral
Price: Tickets from £15, available from
www.birmingham.bachchoir.com, or from
B.Mus/THSH & Eventbrite.
Dancing traditional clog dances, mostly English.
Anyone is most welcome to join the group on
Monday evenings. The group welcomes those
willing to give dancing a try, and also those
interested in joining the band. No experience is
needed, help and support are freely given.
Venue: Armitage Village Hall
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rugeley & District Lions Club and Rugeley Rotary Club - Christmas Float Route
Mon 5th Dec Start at Leyland Drive, Wolseley Road, Levett Grange, Old Eaton Road.
Tues 6th Dec Springfields starting at Park Hall Close, Springfields Road, Crabtree Way as far as
Weds 7th Dec Millington Street, Vicars Croft, Chadsfield Estate, Station Road, St Anthonys Close,
Heron Street, Talbot Street.
Thurs 8th Dec Colton & Hill Ridware
Fri 9th Dec Little Haywood
Mon 12th Dec Chaseley Road, Peakes Road, Crabtree Way to Lansdowne Way, Woodcock Road to
Chase Pub, then Slitting Mill.
Tues 13th Dec Etchinghill – starting Stag Close, Penk Drive South, Penk Drive North, Bower Lane
down to Hathorn Grove finishing at The Beeches.
Weds 14th Dec Chase Side Road/Greenfields Drive/Green Lane from Crabtree Way to Plovers Rise.
Thurs 15th Dec Pear Tree Estate
Fri 16th Dec, Upper Birches, Draycott Estate, Burnthill Lane.
Aldi: 9th December | Tesco: 8th & 15th December | Morrisons: 16th December | Approx 12 noon– 4pm
hours subject to supermarket approval. *All routes are subject to weather, roadworks and timing. Finishing
at 9pm each evening.
Promote your event in our What’s On guide and reach over 8,000 homes and businesses for
only £20 for businesses and £10 for charities. Entries must be 50 words maximum. To book
contact Rebecca Hill 07970 513144 email@example.com
Please clearly mark your email ‘What’s On Rugeley and Cannock'.
Stir Up Sunday Christmas Pud!
By Ruth Redgate
It’s simple to make your own Christmas Pudding, and they are lush! Just use whatever
dried fruit you enjoy! Check out our video to see more
(scan the QR code on the picture).
For a 1-pint pudding bowl
56g caster sugar
56g vegetarian suet
28g candied peel, chopped
28g plain flour
28g fresh white breadcrumbs
14g flaked almonds
1/4 lemon, zest only
1 egg, beaten
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4tsp mixed spice
1/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
Pinch of salt
38ml brandy, rum or sherry
You can pre-soak your fruit in the
1) Add all your dry ingredients
(including the pre-soaked fruit) into
the bowl and mix. Then add the wet
ingredients and mix.
2) Grease your pudding bowl and
add the mix, cover in greaseproof
paper, and then foil, and secure with
1) Put the basin in a large steamer of
boiling water or use your slow
cooker and cover with a lid. Boil for
5-6 hours, topping the boiling water
up from time
to time, if
2) Allow to
3) Change the greaseproof and foil
covers for fresh ones and tie up as
before. Store in a cool cupboard until
Christmas Day. You can feed with
alcohol on a weekly basis if you wish.
4) To serve, steam for 1 hour and
serve with brandy butter, rum sauce,
cream or homemade custard.
Ruth Redgate is the owner and chief
baker at Hunnypot Cottage Bakery.
Contact her on
Hunting in the Wild
By Dr Mark Knight
Photo by Dr Mark Knight
Geocaching is a treasure hunt for the
digital generation, where you can enjoy
the freedom of being outside and
discovering new places. Whether under tall
trees or on an expanse of beach, there are
geocaches hidden across the UK and this
global treasure hunt has come to the Trent
One of my tasks as Cultural Heritage Officer of
the Transforming the Trent Valley (TTTV) scheme
has been to create geocache sites near pillboxes
and along the Trent Valley Way. So far, we have
installed seven caches - three at pillbox sites and
four along the route of the Trent Valley Way. One
at Wolseley Bridge and another at Shardlow mark
each end of the scheme area. One along the river
at Branston Leas takes the seeker to this beautiful
stretch of the Washlands, and one detours from
the Trent Valley Way to the Staffordshire Wildlife
Trust managed site at Croxall Lakes. We have
placed 200 wooden tokens in old ammo cans at
each site. Each token bears the Trent Valley Way
bat and salmon icon, our TTTV logo and a unique
reference code that can be logged at the
geocaching website. Once the 200 tokens (or
'woodies' as the geocachers call them) are gone,
they won't be replaced, so go forth now intrepid
treasure seekers before the treasure is gone for
We now have funding for additional sites along
the River Dove (which includes two pillbox
caches) and we are planning to create further sites
along the River Tame too. Keep an eye on the
geocache apps to be ready when they appear.
If you would like to get involved, the geocaching
website is www.geocaching.com where you can
create your own login and join the fun.
How Does Your
By Piper Nurseries
The leaves are falling rapidly, and with
inclement weather on the increase, your
more tender plants will need protecting
from frost, wind and freezing rains. Move plants
into a greenhouse or sheltered spot, or wrap
your plants or pots.
Remember winter can be a tough time for birds
and wildlife in terms of finding food and water, so
keep supplies well topped up for them.
Here are a few jobs and tips to help your winter
garden flourish (or at least, survive!)
• Clear up fallen leaves, especially from ponds and
• Raise containers onto pot feet, or bricks, to help
prevent waterlogging during the rainy season.
• Insulate outdoor containers from frost – bubble
wrap works well to keep them warm.
• Plant out your winter bedding with bulbs and
hardy perennials, ready for the spring.
• Prune roses to prevent ‘wind-rock.’
• Insulate outdoor taps and cover ponds to
prevent them from freezing. If your pond does
freeze over and it has fish in it, place a hot pan onto
the ice to allow it to gently melt.
• Check your winter protection structures are all
sound and still in place.
• Harvest winter veg, such as leeks, parsnips,
sprouts and root crops.
Visit www.pipernurseries.co.uk to find out more.
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