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Wolverhampton and South Staffs Scene Magazine Spring 2024

All the latest what's on, Education, motoring, health, beauty, well-being, summer festivals, walks to blow away the winter cob webs, interview with Two Pints of Lager stars Will and Ralf and much more! Next edition is the first of our SUMMER editions covering May and June. To promote your business or event contact Sarah or Sam on 01952 780058 or email sarah@scenelocal.co.uk

All the latest what's on, Education, motoring, health, beauty, well-being, summer festivals, walks to blow away the winter cob webs, interview with Two Pints of Lager stars Will and Ralf and much more! Next edition is the first of our SUMMER editions covering May and June. To promote your business or event contact Sarah or Sam on 01952 780058 or email sarah@scenelocal.co.uk

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<strong>Wolverhampton</strong> & <strong>South</strong> <strong>Staffs</strong> Villages<br />

YOUR<br />

FREE<br />

COPY<br />

Entertainment, Leisure & Lifestyle <strong>Magazine</strong><br />

SPRING EDITION <strong>2024</strong><br />

Inside... Health, beauty & well-being, house, home <strong>and</strong> garden, interview with Two Pints<br />

of Lager legends, Bike4Life, all the latest what’s on & summer festivals plus much more...


Save with the £750<br />

New Vehicle Payment.<br />

Use the one-off payment towards your Advance<br />

Payment or have it paid directly to you after<br />

you get your Motability Scheme car.<br />

Talk to us about your everyday freedom<br />

brindley.co.uk/motability<br />

01902 310 666<br />

Representing world-class br<strong>and</strong>s including Honda, Hyundai, Kia,<br />

Mazda, MG, Nissan <strong>and</strong> Volvo.<br />

We’ve got dedicated parking you can reserve for your visit. Just let us know <strong>and</strong> we’ll<br />

save you a space right outside.<br />

The New Vehicle Payment can only be used once <strong>and</strong> is available to eligible customers only. Customers who have an existing lease are eligible for this payment when they order<br />

their next car, if they haven’t received it before. New customers are eligible if they order their first car on the Scheme in <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

W Brindley Garages Ltd is regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (“FCA”) <strong>and</strong> is registered with the FCA as a credit broker of Motability Operations Limited, who is the lender<br />

in relation to the Motability Contract Hire Scheme. The Motability Contract Hire Scheme is administered by Motability Operations Limited (Registered Company No. 1373876). To<br />

qualify you must be in receipt of the Higher Rate Mobility Component of Disability Living Allowance, the Enhanced Rate Mobility Component of Personal Independent Payment, the<br />

War Pensioners’ Mobility Supplement, the Armed Forces Independence Payment, the Higher Rate Mobility Component of Child Disability Payment, or the Enhances rate mobility<br />

part of the Adult Disability Payment, which will be taken in lieu of the four weekly rental. Prices vary depending on vehicle selected. Terms <strong>and</strong> conditions apply.


Page 30<br />

Meet the team:<br />

WELCOME TO YOUR<br />

SPRING <strong>2024</strong> EDITION<br />

Contents:<br />

Sir Frank William<br />

Sarah & Michal<br />

Gruchala-Williams<br />

Company Directors<br />

Sam Gater<br />

Sales Manager<br />

Pages 4 & 5 Bike4Life Festival <strong>2024</strong><br />

Pages 6 & 7<br />

10% of treatments at The Medispa<br />

Page 10<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> Recipes<br />

Page 12<br />

Local News<br />

Page 16<br />

What’s on Wellington<br />

Page 18<br />

Easter <strong>and</strong> religion<br />

Pages 26 – 35<br />

What’s on <strong>and</strong> family festivals this summer<br />

Pages 36 & 37<br />

Interview with Will & Ralf<br />

Pages 40 – 43<br />

Travel pages<br />

Pages 44 – 49<br />

Pets<br />

Pages 50 & 51<br />

Walk away the winter cobwebs<br />

Pages 52 – 69<br />

Health, beauty <strong>and</strong> well-being<br />

Pages 70 – 73<br />

Education<br />

Pages 75 – 85<br />

House, home <strong>and</strong> Garden<br />

Pages 90 & 92<br />

Car Reviews<br />

Page 96<br />

Mens mental health with Dribbz<br />

To be included within the first of our summer<br />

editions covering May <strong>and</strong> June<br />

Contact Sarah or Sam 01952 780058<br />

Or email: sarah@scenelocal.co.uk<br />

All advertising is supported digitally across our sites:<br />

Katie Wilson<br />

Editorial<br />

We’ve got you covered: 30,000 copies distributed throughout Local businesses,<br />

supermarkets & selected homes, right across Shropshire & the Midl<strong>and</strong>s<br />

......................................................................................................................................<br />

This magazine is published by:<br />

<strong>Scene</strong> Local Media Ltd,<br />

Telford, TF2 9TQ<br />

@scene.telford & @SYone.Shrewsbury<br />

<strong>Scene</strong> & SYone magazines<br />

@scenemagazines<br />

The publisher shall not be held liable for any<br />

loss occasioned by failure of an<br />

advertisement to appear, or any damage or<br />

inconvenience caused by errors, omissions<br />

<strong>and</strong> misprints. All information correct at time<br />

Tel: 01952 780058<br />

Email: Sarah@scenelocal.co.uk<br />

Director: Sarah Gruchala-Williams<br />

of going to press.<br />

......................................................................................................................................


Sponsored by:<br />

Bike4Life Festival Exp<strong>and</strong>s<br />

with New Venue for <strong>2024</strong><br />

Midl<strong>and</strong>s Air Ambulance Charity’s Bike4Life<br />

Festival returns <strong>and</strong> will be bigger <strong>and</strong> better<br />

than ever before for <strong>2024</strong> with a new venue to<br />

watch its convoy of 3,500 motorbikes arriving in<br />

style – Weston Park in Shifnal, Shropshire.<br />

The Bike4Life Ride Out <strong>and</strong> Festival, sponsored by<br />

The Bike Insurer, is taking place on Sunday 28th<br />

April, with the Festival opening from 10am at its<br />

br<strong>and</strong>-new venue in Weston Park. Historically, the<br />

Bike4Life Festival has taken place near Midl<strong>and</strong>s Air<br />

Ambulance Charity’s former airbase, located on RAF<br />

Cosford’s airfield.<br />

Book your festival tickets here:<br />

www.bike4lifefest.com<br />

Check out The Bike Insurer’s website <strong>and</strong> see<br />

how much you could save on your insurance:<br />

www.thebikeinsurer.co.uk<br />

For more on Midl<strong>and</strong>s Air Ambulance<br />

Charity’s lifesaving service visit:<br />

www.midl<strong>and</strong>sairambulance.com<br />

<strong>and</strong> follow the organisation on social media.<br />

However, this year, with a new home for its Festival,<br />

the lifesaving service is exp<strong>and</strong>ing its entertainment,<br />

catering <strong>and</strong> activities offering, with an artisan<br />

market, large scale kids’ zone, <strong>and</strong> bar area. The<br />

Festival will also remain open until 5pm.<br />

Emma Wood, head of fundraising <strong>and</strong> engagement<br />

for Midl<strong>and</strong>s Air Ambulance Charity, said: “Each<br />

year, our Bike4Life Festival has grown in popularity.<br />

So many families enjoy an exciting day out watching<br />

our 3,500-motorbike convoy arrive at the festival.<br />

“This year, our new venue is providing us with<br />

opportunities to make the festival bigger <strong>and</strong> better<br />

than ever before with more space meaning we can<br />

offer a wider range of food <strong>and</strong> drink options, more<br />

fun <strong>and</strong> entertainment for all the family <strong>and</strong> all for<br />

just £7.50 per adult, children aged 15 <strong>and</strong> under go<br />

free.”<br />

The Bike4Life Festival, organised by Midl<strong>and</strong>s Air<br />

Ambulance Charity, is the perfect day out for all the<br />

family with opportunities to meet celebrity VIPs,<br />

sample the best local street food, live b<strong>and</strong>s <strong>and</strong><br />

entertainment, fun fayre with kids’ rides <strong>and</strong> an<br />

artisan market.


Children<br />

aged 15 <strong>and</strong><br />

under gog<br />

FREE<br />

W eston Park TF11 8LE<br />

Sunday 28th April<br />

10am-5pm<br />

• Family-friendly festival<br />

• Food village • Funfair<br />

• Live music • Artisan market<br />

• Plus watch the<br />

6,000-strong motorcyle<br />

ride out arrive!<br />

All proceeds go to the lifesaving work of<br />

Sponsored by<br />

Follow for updates:<br />

@Bike4LifeFest<br />

Bike4LifeFest<br />

With support from<br />

To<br />

book <strong>and</strong> for more information visit:<br />

bike4lifefest.com


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DRINKS:<br />

DEMIJOHN: INTO THE FUTURE<br />

There are numerous liqueurs<br />

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depending on liking <strong>and</strong> tastes,<br />

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ingredients for the recipes,<br />

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If cocktails are a<br />

passion, then liqueurs will add<br />

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‘WOW’ factor.<br />

Demijohn, a liquid deli, was<br />

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Multi award-winning Demijohn goes<br />

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impressive presentations of<br />

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included, on request. Gift wrapping<br />

is also available.<br />

From the popular productions,<br />

utilising many fruits, including<br />

raspberries, damsons, cherries,<br />

blackcurrants <strong>and</strong> gooseberries, plus<br />

so much more, there are plenty of<br />

choices <strong>and</strong> something for all tastes<br />

<strong>and</strong> palates. Several have a<br />

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occasions - particularly a fine,<br />

favourite liqueur, for accompanying<br />

desserts or to enjoy afterwards. I<br />

located Chocolate Rum Liqueur <strong>and</strong><br />

found this exceptional, with<br />

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Rocco|àtÄ|tÇÉ<br />

Pizza, Pasta Risotto,<br />

Grills Fresh fish, Gillto <strong>and</strong> fine wine<br />

Come <strong>and</strong> enjoy some<br />

delicious <strong>and</strong> authentic<br />

Italian Cuisine this <strong>Spring</strong>.<br />

Great priced set lunch menu available<br />

DELIVERY AVAILABLE TUESDAY - SATURDAY<br />

Through Just Eat or Deliveroo or collection<br />

FOOD SERVED<br />

Set Menu available Lunchtimes:<br />

Tues - Sat 12noon - 2.30pm<br />

A La Carte menu in the evenings: Tues - Sat 5pm - Late<br />

CLOSED SUNDAY/MONDAY (INCLUDING BANK HOLIDAYS)<br />

72-73 DARLINGTON STREET,<br />

WOLVERHAMPTON, WV1 4LY<br />

PLENTY OF PARKING AVAILABLE<br />

(Opposite Fold Street Car Park)<br />

01902 546262<br />

rocco_italian@hotmail.com<br />

www.roccoitalian.co.uk


Easter<br />

Getting Ready For Easter:<br />

3 Top Easter Lunch Ideas<br />

A Classic Roast Lunch<br />

3. Stir in the crème fraiche, peas, 1 tbsp mustard <strong>and</strong> the<br />

tarragon, <strong>and</strong> bubble for a few minutes until thick <strong>and</strong><br />

saucy. Add a splash more stock or water if it seems too<br />

thick Remove the pie filling from the heat. Whisk the<br />

remaining ½ tbsp mustard with the egg in a bowl.<br />

4. Heat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Spoon the<br />

filling into a pie dish with a lip <strong>and</strong> use some of the egg<br />

mix to brush the sides of the dish. Unroll the pastry over<br />

the top of the pie <strong>and</strong> crimp the edges against the sides<br />

of the dish, then cut away any excess with a knife. Will<br />

keep frozen, well covered, for up to three months.<br />

5. Brush the remaining egg glaze over the pie <strong>and</strong> make<br />

a small steam hole in the middle. Bake for 40 mins until<br />

golden <strong>and</strong> puffed.<br />

Lamb And <strong>Spring</strong> Greens Wreath<br />

Of course, the classic option if you’re hosting this Easter<br />

is to opt for a full roast lunch.<br />

Choose a delicious joint of meat (or an alternative for<br />

the non-meat eaters) <strong>and</strong> put out all of the trimmings.<br />

Delicious roasted or boiled potatoes, seasonal<br />

vegetables; carrots, roasted radishes, leeks, aren’t only<br />

delicious but they also add a layer of colour to your<br />

table.<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> Chicken Pot Pie<br />

Ingredients:<br />

• 4-6 skinless, boneless chicken thighs<br />

• 1 tbsp olive oil<br />

• 100g smoked bacon lardons<br />

• 2 leeks, sliced<br />

• 3 tbsp plain flour<br />

• 100ml white wine (or extra stock)<br />

• 200ml chicken stock<br />

• 200g crème fraiche<br />

• 100g peas<br />

• 1½ tbsp Dijon mustard<br />

• small bunch of tarragon, chopped<br />

• 1 egg, beaten<br />

• 320g sheet puff pastry<br />

Method<br />

1. Season the chicken thighs with some salt <strong>and</strong> pepper.<br />

Heat the oil in a heavy-based saucepan <strong>and</strong> fry the<br />

chicken for 3-4 mins on each side until lightly golden,<br />

then transfer to a plate.<br />

Add the bacon to the pan <strong>and</strong> fry for 5 mins until golden.<br />

Tip in the leeks <strong>and</strong> fry for another 5 mins.<br />

2. Sprinkle the flour over the leeks <strong>and</strong> bacon <strong>and</strong> stir<br />

until combined. Add the wine, if using, <strong>and</strong> bubble for a<br />

few minutes, then add the stock <strong>and</strong> stir well. Slice the<br />

chicken <strong>and</strong> return it to the pan – don’t worry if it’s not<br />

fully cooked through at this point, it will finish cooking<br />

in the oven.<br />

Ingredients<br />

• 500g pack lamb mince<br />

• 1 tsp olive oil<br />

• 1 onion, finely chopped<br />

• 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped<br />

• 1 tsp ground cumin<br />

• 2 tbsp tomato purée<br />

• 50g sliced spring greens<br />

• 1 tsp dried oregano<br />

• 10g rosemary, leaves finely chopped, plus extra<br />

to garnish (optional)<br />

• 8½ sheets filo pastry<br />

• 75g butter, melted<br />

• h<strong>and</strong>ful sesame seeds<br />

• 100g Greek-style low-fat yogurt<br />

• 10g mint leaves, chopped<br />

Method<br />

1. Heat a large, lidded frying pan over a high heat <strong>and</strong><br />

add the lamb. Fry for 8-10 mins until the lamb starts to<br />

brown. Lower the heat to medium, add the oil, onion,<br />

garlic, cumin, tomato purée <strong>and</strong> spring greens, season.<br />

Stir, cover, <strong>and</strong> cook for 20 mins until the lamb is<br />

cooked. Stir in the oregano <strong>and</strong> most of the rosemary;<br />

remove from the heat.<br />

2. Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C. Place 1<br />

sheet of pastry on a clean surface, brush with melted<br />

butter <strong>and</strong> top with another sheet of pastry. Repeat to<br />

use 4 sheets of pastry. Keep the remaining 4½ sheets of<br />

filo under a damp tea towel to stop them drying out.<br />

3. Keeping the longer side of the pastry sheets facing<br />

you, lay half the lamb mix in a line along the middle of<br />

the top sheet of filo. Starting at the side nearest to you,<br />

roll the sheets away from you to make a long tube.<br />

Transfer to a lined baking tray, with the seam<br />

underneath, <strong>and</strong> shape into a semicircle.<br />

4. Repeat with the other 4 sheets of filo <strong>and</strong> filling.<br />

Transfer to the baking tray. Halve the remaining pastry<br />

half <strong>and</strong> brush with butter. Use this to join the 2 tubes<br />

together to form a wreath. Brush with butter; sprinkle<br />

with sesame seeds. Bake for 15-20 mins until golden.<br />

5. Mix the yogurt, most of the mint leaves <strong>and</strong> some<br />

seasoning in a bowl, top with mint leaves. Serve with the<br />

wreath.<br />

By Katie Wilson


Local News<br />

Paul Hurst Returns To Shrewsbury: Shrewsbury<br />

Town FC Re-Appoint Former Manager<br />

Shrewsbury Town FC have re-appointed former head coach, Paul<br />

Hurst, announcing his return to the club on Wednesday 24 January<br />

following the sacking of Matt Taylor.<br />

Hurst had previously had a reign of success at Shrewsbury before<br />

leaving the club for Ipswich in 2018. Having been asked about his<br />

decision <strong>and</strong> whether or not he regretted the move, Hurst said with<br />

hindsight he would have wanted things to be different.<br />

“Regret is the easy thing. If I said 'yes', then I think I can justify the<br />

reason for leaving, so it would be wrong of me to say regret.”<br />

"If I knew that everything was going to happen [as it did] then, yes, of<br />

course, but why should I? There is so much false news out there.<br />

Some people want to believe it <strong>and</strong> a some maybe are bit more open<br />

to the facts of it all - the Championship club <strong>and</strong> the ambition - but<br />

that's not to say it was an easy decision.”<br />

"The biggest thing for me was that it wasn't very long before I wanted<br />

to come back <strong>and</strong> I'm very grateful that's happened."<br />

Work on the project is due to start later this year <strong>and</strong> is due to be<br />

finished by the end of 2025.<br />

The College’s principal <strong>and</strong> chief executive Graham Guest said: “This<br />

reconfiguration is part of an ambitious strategic plan which will<br />

elevate Telford College to new levels.”<br />

Man Arrested Following Two-Car Crash in<br />

<strong>Wolverhampton</strong><br />

A man has been arrested on suspicion of causing serious injury by<br />

reckless driving following a two-car crash in <strong>Wolverhampton</strong> on<br />

Friday 16 February.<br />

The crash happened at around 20:45 at the junction of Rookery Lane<br />

<strong>and</strong> Goldthorn Hill <strong>and</strong> a woman in her 60’s <strong>and</strong> a teenage boy were<br />

both taken to hospital in critical condition.<br />

Police have said a 29-year-old man has been arrested in Kent <strong>and</strong><br />

following hospital checks was being transferred to a police station in<br />

the West Midl<strong>and</strong>s for questioning.<br />

Detective Sgt Julie Lyman said: "Although an arrest has been made<br />

we are still working to establish exactly what happened<br />

Telford College Announces £1.8m Campus<br />

Upgrade<br />

Telford College has revealed it’s plans to upgrade it’s facilities at a cost<br />

of £1.8m.<br />

The Haybridge Campus in Wellington is in line to be transformed into<br />

a “technical <strong>and</strong> vocational training centre of excellence” featuring a<br />

student hub, an expansion of it’s engineering workshop, a new<br />

restaurant <strong>and</strong> hair <strong>and</strong> beauty training facilities.<br />

Controversial Parking Charge Hike For<br />

Shropshire Towns To Be Reconsidered<br />

Huge increases in car parking charges will be reconsidered by top<br />

councillors after a scrutiny committee urged a re-think of the plans.<br />

After close to three hours of discussion, Shropshire Council’s<br />

Economy <strong>and</strong> Environment Overview Scrutiny Committee voted to ask<br />

the cabinet to reconsider the<br />

plans.<br />

Councillor Dan Morris said<br />

that the council’s own<br />

estimates predicted that over<br />

21,000 people would stop<br />

using car parks in<br />

Shrewsbury should the<br />

increases go ahead.<br />

He predicted 9,000 would be<br />

expected to transfer to park<br />

<strong>and</strong> ride with others<br />

considering alternative<br />

options.<br />

by Katie Wilson


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Easter trail<br />

around town<br />

From Saturday 23<br />

March to Saturday 30<br />

March, it’s time for youngsters to follow an<br />

‘Easter Trail’ in Wellington. The Wellington<br />

Easter Egg Hunt organised by Love<br />

Wellington <strong>and</strong> sponsored by Wellington<br />

Town Council will provide younger members<br />

of the Wellington community the chance to<br />

see how many easter eggs they can see<br />

displayed in various shop windows around<br />

the town. Children are invited to collect a<br />

trail map from the Wellington Orbit, find the<br />

eggs, <strong>and</strong> then return to the Orbit for a<br />

special Easter Egg treat.<br />

New Youth Club<br />

The Mayor of Wellington, Cllr Paul Davis,<br />

popped into the inaugural meeting of the<br />

recently started Youth Club at Telford<br />

Interfaith Centre in Wellington. The Junior<br />

Youth Club (Yrs 6,7 <strong>and</strong> 8 - age 10+) meet<br />

on Mondays 5:30 - 7pm, whilst the Senior<br />

Youth Club (Year 9+) is also on Mondays<br />

from 7:15 - 8:45pm.<br />

The clubs are free to attend <strong>and</strong> are run by<br />

SYA – All About Youth <strong>and</strong> are a welcome<br />

addition for Wellington. Volunteers <strong>and</strong><br />

donations of games would be gratefully<br />

received. For more information please<br />

contact Becca Lewis on 07741 885017 or<br />

email becca@sya.org.uk<br />

Flipping Good fun in Wellington<br />

On Shrove Tuesday, residents <strong>and</strong> traders<br />

gathered in Wellington's Market Square for<br />

the first-ever Pancake Day celebration – the<br />

'pan-Tefalon' which saw businesses <strong>and</strong> onlookers<br />

invited to take part in a range of<br />

games from a flower toss to an egg-<strong>and</strong>spoon<br />

race.<br />

The event culminated with the trader's<br />

pancake toss, where several of the town's<br />

sellers competed to ‘serve up a flipping<br />

good pancake’ to the High Sheriff of<br />

Shropshire, M<strong>and</strong>y Thorn, who was visiting<br />

the town for the day, <strong>and</strong> Wellington's Mayor<br />

Paul Davis. Organised by Jon Drew from the<br />

Boardroom Gaming Café in New Street in<br />

conjunction with Love Wellington, the<br />

organisers hope the event will become an<br />

annual tradition.<br />

Keli King of the Little Green Pantry was<br />

crowned Champion Flipper.<br />

During the day the High Sheriff also visited<br />

local businesses, the town's cycle delivery<br />

team <strong>and</strong> the local policing teams.<br />

Photo credit to Shropshire Star<br />

Coming up in<br />

Wellington in <strong>2024</strong>!<br />

Saturday 2 March<br />

Wellington Charter Day<br />

All Saints Church <strong>and</strong> Wellington<br />

High Street - 11 to 1pm<br />

Sunday 3 March<br />

Mayor’s Civic Service at<br />

All Saints 4pm<br />

Saturday 23 – Saturday<br />

30 March<br />

Wellington Easter Egg<br />

Hunt – various Wellington<br />

businesses – forms<br />

available from The<br />

Wellington Orbit<br />

Wednesday 10 April<br />

Wrekin Flower Club<br />

presents a Fashion Show<br />

at Wrekin College 7.30pm<br />

Tickets 01952 252243<br />

Wednesday 8 May<br />

Bayley Mile – a mile long<br />

race for local school<br />

children around<br />

Wellington<br />

Saturday 11 May<br />

Presentation to winners of<br />

Wellington Peggie Harrison Schools<br />

poetry competition<br />

Community Production – ‘Children of<br />

Eden’ at All Saints Church, Wellington<br />

Saturday 8 June<br />

Midsummer Fayre at All Saints<br />

Church <strong>and</strong> Market Square<br />

Weekend of 29 & 30 June<br />

Wellington Open Gardens Weekend<br />

Saturday 7 July<br />

Open air production of Julius Caesar<br />

at Bowring Park<br />

Saturday 20 July<br />

Italian Scooter Day - Market Square<br />

<strong>and</strong> Central Wellington


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17


Easter & Religions<br />

Easter Celebrations: How<br />

Do Different Religions<br />

Celebrate The Holiday?<br />

Easter is a holiday that is<br />

celebrated worldwide <strong>and</strong> holds<br />

profound meaning in various<br />

religious traditions. While<br />

Christianity predominantly<br />

associates Easter with the<br />

resurrection of Jesus, other<br />

religions also observe the<br />

festival in unique <strong>and</strong><br />

meaningful ways. In this<br />

feature, we will explore the<br />

diverse range of Easter<br />

celebrations across different<br />

religions.<br />

Judaism<br />

In the Jewish faith, Easter coincides with Passover <strong>and</strong><br />

both festivals share the themes of freedom <strong>and</strong> reestablishment.<br />

Passover commemorates the Israelites'<br />

escape from slavery in Egypt, emphasising the concept<br />

of emancipation <strong>and</strong> new beginnings.<br />

During Passover, Jewish families engage in a Seder<br />

which is a ritual meal that includes symbolic foods like<br />

matzah (an unleavened flatbread) <strong>and</strong> bitter herbs. The<br />

festival serves as a time for reflection on the importance<br />

of freedom <strong>and</strong> gratitude.<br />

Islam<br />

While Easter is not a religious observance in Islam, it is<br />

important to acknowledge the great diversity that exists<br />

within the Muslim community.<br />

In some regions, particularly those with significant<br />

Christian populations, Muslims may join in Easter<br />

celebrations as a gesture of solidarity with their<br />

Christian neighbours. This shared spirit is a true<br />

celebration of unity <strong>and</strong> how different religions can join<br />

together.<br />

Hinduism<br />

In Hinduism, the festival of Holi often coincides with<br />

Easter which is both a vibrant <strong>and</strong> colourful celebration.<br />

Holi marks the great triumph of good over evil as well as<br />

the arrival of the spring season. Those celebrating the<br />

festivity engage in playful activities, throwing coloured<br />

powders <strong>and</strong> water at each other to symbolise the victory<br />

of light <strong>and</strong> positivity.<br />

The closeness of Holi <strong>and</strong> Easter provides an<br />

opportunity for communities to come together,<br />

celebrating the shared values of joy, hope, <strong>and</strong> renewal<br />

<strong>and</strong> again showcases the harmonious coexistence of<br />

diverse traditions.<br />

Buddhism<br />

While Buddhism does not have a direct connection to<br />

Easter, the principles of rebirth <strong>and</strong> enlightenment are<br />

integral to the Buddhist faith.<br />

Christianity<br />

In the Christian faith, Easter is a holiday that really<br />

celebrates the life of Jesus, commemorating his<br />

crucifixion on Good Friday <strong>and</strong> his resurrection on<br />

Easter Sunday.<br />

Christians will often attend church services <strong>and</strong><br />

participate in processions <strong>and</strong> prayer to reflect on the<br />

life of Jesus.<br />

For many Christians, Easter is not only a religious<br />

reflection but also a time for joyous festivities. Families<br />

gather for elaborate meals, exchange Easter eggs <strong>and</strong><br />

partake in various traditions symbolising renewal <strong>and</strong><br />

rebirth.<br />

In some cultures, the arrival of spring is marked by<br />

various celebrations <strong>and</strong> rituals that align with the<br />

themes of Easter. The focus on mindfulness <strong>and</strong><br />

spiritual growth during this time mirrors the essence of<br />

Easter in the Christian tradition.<br />

The key thing to take from Easter are the themes of<br />

rebirth <strong>and</strong> re-establishment, both of which are key to<br />

the spring season <strong>and</strong> popular themes across many<br />

religions.<br />

While different religions have varying festivals <strong>and</strong> ways<br />

of celebrating, the connection in concept is something<br />

that should be highlighted <strong>and</strong> allow religious<br />

individuals to appreciate the beliefs <strong>and</strong> festivals of<br />

others.<br />

By Katie Wilson


APLEY | 19 MAY<br />

10am – 4pm<br />

£3.50 ENTRY U-16 FREE<br />

Come <strong>and</strong> enjoy our gardens, plant sale, stalls to browse,<br />

delicious refreshments, entertainment & crafts to enjoy.<br />

Family-friendly & dogs welcome<br />

BICTON | 26 MAY<br />

Find out more<br />

severnhospice.org.uk<br />

SUPPORT YOUR<br />

LOCAL HOSPICE


<strong>Spring</strong> Fashion<br />

Freshen Up Your Wardrobe:<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> Fashion Ideas for<br />

Men<br />

As the cold weather begins to fade away,<br />

it’s time to start transitioning your<br />

wardrobe from the heavier layers of<br />

winter to the lighter, more vibrant styles<br />

of spring.<br />

With warmer temperatures <strong>and</strong> longer<br />

days ahead, men can choose from a<br />

range of fashion choices that all<br />

incorporate comfort, style, <strong>and</strong><br />

functionality.<br />

Whether you're just heading to the<br />

office, a casual outing, or a weekend<br />

getaway, here are some spring fashion<br />

ideas to freshen up your look.<br />

Prints And Patterns<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> is the perfect time to experiment with varying<br />

prints <strong>and</strong> patterns. From classic stripes to floral prints<br />

<strong>and</strong> geometric designs, there's a wide variety to choose<br />

from.<br />

Incorporate printed shirts or even accessories like ties<br />

<strong>and</strong> pocket squares to add some personality to your<br />

outfit.<br />

Trainers<br />

Now is finally the time to get that big selection of<br />

trainers back out of the wardrobe.<br />

Whether you're a fan of more classic white trainers,<br />

sleek leather, or colourful options, trainers are a<br />

versatile<br />

choice that<br />

pair well with<br />

almost every<br />

outfit.<br />

Dress them<br />

up with<br />

chinos <strong>and</strong> a<br />

blazer for a<br />

smart-casual<br />

look or keep<br />

it laid-back<br />

with jeans<br />

<strong>and</strong> a T-shirt<br />

for a more<br />

relaxed<br />

spring vibe.<br />

Accessories<br />

Elevate your spring outfits with statement accessories<br />

that add a pop of personality <strong>and</strong> style to your look.<br />

From stylish watches to patterned scarves <strong>and</strong> woven<br />

belts, accessories are a great way to inject some flair into<br />

your look without going overboard.<br />

Experiment with different textures, colours, <strong>and</strong> styles<br />

to find pieces that suit your own style.<br />

Lightweight Knitwear<br />

Lightweight Layers<br />

Say goodbye to bulky coats <strong>and</strong> hello to lightweight<br />

layers this season. <strong>Spring</strong> is all about versatility, so opt<br />

for breathable fabrics like cotton, linen, <strong>and</strong> wool.<br />

A classic option is a stylish lightweight jacket that you<br />

can easily throw over a T-shirt for the daytime or on top<br />

of a shirt for the evenings.<br />

Pastels<br />

Embrace the season's soft colour palette by<br />

incorporating pastel shades into your wardrobe.<br />

Who said pink was only for female fashion? Pale pinks,<br />

soft blues mint greens, <strong>and</strong> light yellows are perfect for<br />

adding a touch of springtime freshness to your outfits.<br />

Whether it's a pastel-coloured polo shirt or even a<br />

lightweight sweater, these subtle shades will add<br />

something new to your wardrobe.<br />

You don’t need to stash away all your knitwear just yet.<br />

Lightweight jumpers <strong>and</strong> knit tops are perfect for those<br />

transitional days when the weather can be<br />

unpredictable, especially in Shropshire!<br />

Opt for breathable fabrics like cotton or linen blends<br />

that will keep you comfortable throughout the day.<br />

Layer them over a collared shirt for a smart office look<br />

or wear them solo with tailored trousers for a more<br />

casual setting.<br />

Tailored Shorts<br />

While too much focus on shorts are probably a little<br />

enthusiastic just yet, they’re something to consider for<br />

those heading away on holiday.<br />

Tailored shorts are perfect paired with a crisp white<br />

shirt or a lightweight sweater for a casual yet refined<br />

outfit. Whether you’re out for a meal or heading out on a<br />

walk somewhere where the sun is shining, shorts are<br />

definitely soon to be a priority.<br />

By Katie Wilson


<strong>Spring</strong> Fashion<br />

Freshen Up Your Wardrobe:<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> Fashion Ideas for<br />

Women<br />

With the colder months now fading<br />

away, it’s time to say goodbye to the<br />

heavy coats <strong>and</strong> thicker outfits <strong>and</strong> bring<br />

out the spring wardrobe.<br />

Not only does the new season bring<br />

warmer weather, but it also gives you the<br />

opportunity to refresh your wardrobe<br />

with more colour <strong>and</strong> trendy outfit<br />

choices for the spring.<br />

Have a read of some gorgeous spring<br />

fashion ideas for women that will help<br />

you take on the new season with style.<br />

Pastel Colours<br />

Pastel shades are a perfect choice for spring, bringing<br />

sophistication <strong>and</strong> a true sense of the season to your<br />

wardrobe.<br />

Explore a palette of soft pinks, blues, purples, <strong>and</strong> mint<br />

greens this spring. Whether it's a pastel-coloured blouse<br />

paired with white jeans or a pastel trench coat thrown<br />

over a neutral outfit, these shades are sure to bring that<br />

something extra to your wardrobe.<br />

Flowy Fabrics<br />

Say a fond farewell to the heavier fabrics <strong>and</strong> welcome<br />

the light <strong>and</strong> airy textures of spring.<br />

Opt for flowy dresses, skirts, <strong>and</strong> wide-leg trousers made<br />

from materials such as chiffon, silk, <strong>and</strong> linen. These<br />

breathable fabrics not only keep you cool but also add a<br />

touch of effortless elegance to your outfit.<br />

Accessorise<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> fashion is all about embracing a carefree attitude<br />

<strong>and</strong> what better way to do that than with statement<br />

accessories?<br />

Consider bold hats, floral hair b<strong>and</strong>s or a chunky<br />

necklace to add a touch of personality to your outfit.<br />

Experimenting with accessories allows you to express<br />

your true self <strong>and</strong> bring something extra to even the<br />

simplest of outfits.<br />

Denim<br />

Denim is a versatile wardrobe option that easily<br />

transitions from season to season.<br />

In spring, consider lighter denim shades like pale blues<br />

<strong>and</strong> whites. A well-fitted denim jacket or a pair of stylish<br />

jeans can effortlessly elevate your casual spring look.<br />

Experiment with denim-on-denim outfits or use it as a<br />

neutral base to showcase other more vibrant pieces.<br />

Floral Frenzy<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> <strong>and</strong> florals just go h<strong>and</strong> in h<strong>and</strong>. Make the most<br />

of the blooming season by incorporating floral prints<br />

into your wardrobe.<br />

Whether it's a flowy dress, a tailored blazer, or a pair of<br />

wide-leg trousers, floral patterns add a touch of<br />

femininity <strong>and</strong> freshness to your look.<br />

Opt for pastel tones for a soft <strong>and</strong> romantic vibe, or go<br />

bold with bright, vibrant colours to really make a<br />

statement this season.<br />

Lighter Layers<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> weather can be unpredictable, especially here in<br />

Shropshire so mastering the art of layering is essential.<br />

Invest in lightweight cardigans, denim jackets, <strong>and</strong><br />

stylish trench coats to add some protection from the<br />

chill that also adds style.<br />

These versatile pieces can easily be added or removed to<br />

adapt to the ever-changing weather <strong>and</strong> not only keeps<br />

you comfortable but also adds a new dimension to your<br />

outfit<br />

Comfortable Footwear<br />

With the arrival of warmer weather, it's time to give<br />

your feet some breathing space. Embrace the trend of<br />

pairing dresses, skirts, <strong>and</strong> even tailored suits with<br />

comfortable trainers.<br />

Not only does this combination give you a more laidback<br />

look, but it also sets you up perfectly for spring<br />

walks <strong>and</strong> outdoor activities this season.<br />

By Katie Wilson


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23


Family<br />

Family Size: Why Are<br />

People Having Less<br />

Children?<br />

In 2022, 44% of families in the<br />

UK were one-child families <strong>and</strong><br />

it is thought that this number<br />

will continue to rise.<br />

With couples opting to have<br />

fewer children than previous<br />

generations, many discussions<br />

<strong>and</strong> debates have occurred over<br />

the underlying causes <strong>and</strong> what<br />

the future might look like.<br />

In this feature we will explore<br />

some of the most popular<br />

reasons deemed to be behind<br />

these decreasing birth rates<br />

within the UK.<br />

Economic Pressures<br />

One of the primary factors contributing to the decline in<br />

family size is the economic pressures faced by modern<br />

households.<br />

Rising living costs, house prices, <strong>and</strong> difficult job<br />

markets have caused many couples to delay starting a<br />

family or reconsider the number of children they plan to<br />

have.<br />

The financial burden associated with raising children,<br />

including education, healthcare, as well as weekend<br />

activities <strong>and</strong> holidays has become a significant<br />

deterrent for prospective parents.<br />

Career Pursuits<br />

The emphasis on education <strong>and</strong> career pursuits has<br />

become a driving force behind the decision to have fewer<br />

children.<br />

Many individuals, particularly women, prioritise<br />

establishing their careers <strong>and</strong> achieving personal goals<br />

before starting a family.<br />

This shift in priorities often leads to later marriages <strong>and</strong><br />

subsequently, a reduced window for childbirth.<br />

Additionally, the dem<strong>and</strong>s of a fast-paced professional<br />

life can make it challenging for couples to balance their<br />

careers <strong>and</strong> family responsibilities.<br />

Easier Access to Contraception<br />

Advancements in healthcare <strong>and</strong> improved access to<br />

contraception have empowered individuals to make<br />

informed decisions when it comes to family planning.<br />

The availability of effective birth control methods allows<br />

couples to exercise greater control over the timing <strong>and</strong><br />

number of children they wish to have than in previous<br />

generations.<br />

This has led to a more intentional approach to family<br />

planning, with couples choosing to have children when<br />

they feel emotionally, mentally, <strong>and</strong> financially<br />

prepared.<br />

Environmental Concerns<br />

A growing awareness of environmental issues <strong>and</strong> the<br />

impact of overpopulation on the planet has influenced<br />

some couples to limit their family size.<br />

A Change In Stereotypical Gender Roles<br />

Changes in societal norms <strong>and</strong> ever-evolving gender<br />

roles play a key role in shaping family dynamics.<br />

Today, women are increasingly pursuing education <strong>and</strong><br />

career opportunities than in previous generations<br />

leading to delays in getting married or having children,<br />

with more <strong>and</strong> more women also choosing not to.<br />

The pursuit of equality in the workplace <strong>and</strong> career<br />

progression for women rather than the once stereotype<br />

that they should remain predominately at home all<br />

contribute to the decision to limit family size.<br />

Concerns about resources, climate change, <strong>and</strong> the<br />

carbon footprint associated with raising children have<br />

prompted people to really consider family sizes <strong>and</strong> the<br />

impact larger families can have on our environment.<br />

The Rise In Divorce Rate<br />

Another pivotal factor contributing to the decline in<br />

birth rates is the rise in divorce rate across the UK.<br />

The divorce rate in Engl<strong>and</strong> is currently said to be 42%<br />

which is causing more individuals to consider the real<br />

meaning behind marriage <strong>and</strong> commitment.<br />

With less relationships lasting the long-term, more<br />

individuals are choosing not to have children until they<br />

feel entirely secure in their relationship also leading to a<br />

smaller window for childbirth.<br />

By Katie Wilson


In the world of photography, where every click tells a<br />

story, there exists a realm where moments are not just<br />

frozen in time but transformed into timeless pieces of art.<br />

Chantelle Spare Photography st<strong>and</strong>s at the forefront of<br />

this creative frontier, offering a unique blend of skill,<br />

vision, <strong>and</strong> passion that transcends traditional<br />

photography.<br />

Chantelle Spare, a name synonymous with innovation <strong>and</strong><br />

creativity, has carved her niche in the photography<br />

industry with a distinctive style that captures the essence<br />

of every subject. Her ability to turn ordinary moments<br />

into extraordinary masterpieces has earned her a welldeserved<br />

reputation, attracting clients from diverse<br />

backgrounds seeking a touch of magic in their visual<br />

narratives.<br />

What sets Chantelle Spare Photography apart is not just<br />

the technical expertise but a keen eye for detail <strong>and</strong> a<br />

commitment to storytelling. Each photograph tells a tale,<br />

weaving emotions, <strong>and</strong> freezing moments that might<br />

otherwise slip away. From c<strong>and</strong>id shots to meticulously<br />

staged compositions, Chantelle Spare's portfolio is a<br />

testament to her versatility <strong>and</strong> ability to adapt to the<br />

unique needs of her clients.<br />

But what truly makes Chantelle Spare Photography a<br />

st<strong>and</strong>out choice is the personalized <strong>and</strong> collaborative<br />

approach that defines each project. Chantelle believes in<br />

creating an experience, not just a photo session. Clients<br />

are not mere subjects; they are partners in the creative<br />

journey. This collaborative spirit ensures that every<br />

photograph is a true reflection of the individual or<br />

moment it captures.<br />

Beyond traditional photography services, Chantelle Spare<br />

Photography offers a range of specialized packages<br />

tailored to meet the diverse needs of clients. Whether it's<br />

a milestone event, a professional headshot, or a family<br />

portrait session, Chantelle Spare Photography brings an<br />

artistic touch that transforms the ordinary into the<br />

extraordinary.<br />

From the initial consultation to the final delivery of highquality<br />

prints or digital files, clients can expect a seamless<br />

<strong>and</strong> enjoyable experience. Chantelle Spare Photography is<br />

committed to going above <strong>and</strong> beyond, ensuring that each<br />

client not only receives stunning visuals but also<br />

memories that will be cherished for a lifetime.<br />

In a world saturated with images, Chantelle Spare<br />

Photography st<strong>and</strong>s out as a beacon of creativity <strong>and</strong><br />

excellence. Through her lens, ordinary moments become<br />

extraordinary, <strong>and</strong> every photograph becomes a work of<br />

art. For those seeking not just a photographer but a<br />

storyteller, Chantelle Spare Photography is the<br />

destination where visions come to life, <strong>and</strong> memories are<br />

etched in the most exquisite frames.


WHAT’S ON<br />

<strong>Spring</strong>time Fun On The Farm At Frankly<br />

Alpaca's<br />

Frankly Alpacas, Broseley, Shropshire<br />

Frankly Alpaca is inviting guests to enjoy a special farm<br />

experience this spring, offering the opportunity to meet<br />

lambs, alpacas <strong>and</strong> mini cows.<br />

It is a unique opportunity that offers a h<strong>and</strong>s-on close<br />

experience with animals in the beautiful setting of a real<br />

Shropshire farm.<br />

Suitable for both adults <strong>and</strong> families, guests will receive<br />

a brief introduction on arrival before the experience<br />

begins across the farm<br />

Telford Skills Show<br />

Thursday 14th March <strong>2024</strong> – 11:30 – 19:00<br />

The International Centre, Telford<br />

Brought to you by Telford <strong>and</strong> Wrekin Council’s Jobbox<br />

team, the Telford Skills Show returns this year <strong>and</strong> aims<br />

to promote local apprenticeships, employment <strong>and</strong><br />

training opportunities to people across Telford,<br />

Shropshire <strong>and</strong> the West Midl<strong>and</strong>s.<br />

With opportunities for h<strong>and</strong>s-on activities, people will<br />

have the opportunity to speak to employers in the sector<br />

they are looking to develop into.<br />

With opportunities to discuss career paths <strong>and</strong> get<br />

advice, this event is all about helping people to make the<br />

important decision of starting a new career.<br />

Mam And Me Ah! Mothers Day Brunch<br />

Saturday 9th March <strong>2024</strong><br />

The Hangar in <strong>Wolverhampton</strong><br />

Shrewsbury Farmer’s Market<br />

Saturday 16th March <strong>2024</strong> – 09:00 – 15:30<br />

Shrewsbury Square<br />

The Hangar in <strong>Wolverhampton</strong> are offering the perfect<br />

Abba-themed brunch experience specifically created for<br />

Mother’s Day.<br />

Packed with live performances <strong>and</strong> experiences, the<br />

event features a leading UK ABBA tribute group, movie<br />

scenes <strong>and</strong> sing-a-longs for everyone to enjoy!<br />

Get ready to get up on your feet dancing <strong>and</strong> even be in<br />

with the chance of winning a prize! After the fun, wash<br />

the fun down with some delicious cocktails <strong>and</strong> amazing<br />

street food available<br />

Held monthly in Shrewsbury’s town square, the Famer’s<br />

Market features a range of local produce <strong>and</strong> invites you<br />

to enjoy the best Shropshire has to offer.<br />

Get the whole family into Shrewsbury <strong>and</strong> enjoy<br />

exploring the various stalls, <strong>and</strong> make sure you come<br />

hungry! Right in the heart of the town, also take the<br />

opportunity to enjoy Shrewsbury’s many shops <strong>and</strong> the<br />

Quarry Park.<br />

By Katie Wilson


WHAT’S ON<br />

Easter Activities<br />

Saturday 23rd March – Sunday 14th April<br />

<strong>2024</strong> – 10:00 – 17:00<br />

Blists Hill Victorian Town<br />

Join the residents at Blists Hill Victorian Town to<br />

celebrate Easter this year.<br />

With a range of activities for your little ones to enjoy<br />

from egg hunts, poster trails <strong>and</strong> even Victorian eggdancing<br />

as well as more h<strong>and</strong>s-on activities, there’s<br />

plenty to keep your kids entertained during the<br />

holidays.<br />

St<strong>and</strong>ard entry to Blists Hill Victorian Town applies<br />

Find the eggs at the following locations: St Alkmund’s<br />

Place, The Darwin Centre, Wyle Cop, Shoplatch, St<br />

Julian Friars, The Parade Shops, Mardol, Vicoria Quay,<br />

Shrewsbury Library, The Square, Abbey Foregate <strong>and</strong><br />

Shrewsbury Train Station.<br />

For locals <strong>and</strong> frequent visitiors to Shrewsbury, finding<br />

them all shouldn’t be an issue but you can pick up an<br />

Easter Trail postcard <strong>and</strong> map from Shrewsbury<br />

Museum <strong>and</strong> Art Galley, Shrewsbury Library or<br />

download online.<br />

https://originalshrewsbury.co.uk/events/easter-trail<br />

Happy hunting!<br />

Robin Hood Easter Pantomime<br />

Monday 25th March <strong>2024</strong> – 15:00 – 17:30<br />

The Prince Of Wales Theatre in Cannock<br />

Join The Prince of Wales Theatre for a performance of<br />

Robin Hood <strong>and</strong> his<br />

Merry Men as they<br />

prepare to outwit the<br />

Sheriff of Nottingham.<br />

In a rollercoaster of fun,<br />

laughter <strong>and</strong> pantomime,<br />

the Easter pantomime is<br />

definitely one to<br />

entertain the whole<br />

family this Easter.<br />

Easter Trail<br />

Monday 25th March <strong>2024</strong> - All Day<br />

Shrewsbury<br />

Looking for some Easter fun for the family this <strong>Spring</strong>?<br />

Twelve 1.5m high eggs will be hidden across<br />

Shrewsbury’s town centre ready for your little ones to<br />

find. Find them all <strong>and</strong> solve the Easter Riddle to be in<br />

with the chance of winning 1 of 5 £100 vouchers for a<br />

Shrewsbury business, of your choosing.<br />

Seven Drunken Nights: The Story Of The<br />

Dubliners<br />

Friday 5th April <strong>2024</strong> – 19:30<br />

Theatre Severn, Shrewsbury<br />

Direct from the West End <strong>and</strong> with sold out venues<br />

worldwide, Seven Drunken Nights, The Story of The<br />

Dubliners returns to<br />

theatres this year.<br />

The story tells the<br />

ongoings of a<br />

career lasting fifty<br />

years <strong>and</strong> brings<br />

back the spirits of<br />

Ronnie Drew,<br />

Luke Kelly,<br />

Barney McKenna,<br />

John Sheahan,<br />

Ciaran Bourke<br />

<strong>and</strong> Jim McCann.<br />

Get ready to<br />

experience some<br />

serious talent as<br />

these brilliant<br />

cast of musicians <strong>and</strong> singers bring the music of the<br />

iconic group straight to the theatre.<br />

By Katie Wilson


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29


Easter<br />

Getting Ready For Easter:<br />

Top Tips For Decorating<br />

Your Home<br />

With chocolate eggs <strong>and</strong> all<br />

things Easter now appearing in<br />

shops, it’s time to start thinking<br />

about your plans for this year’s<br />

celebration.<br />

If you’re having guests over this<br />

Easter, decorating your home to<br />

suit the season is a great way to<br />

get everybody talking.<br />

From charming bunny<br />

decorations to centrepieces,<br />

here are some creative ideas to<br />

transform your house into a<br />

perfect Easter wonderl<strong>and</strong>.<br />

Pastel Colours<br />

Easter is synonymous with soft pastel colours that<br />

represent the colours soon to be appearing in the<br />

garden.<br />

Consider incorporating a pastel palette into your home<br />

decor through tablecloths, cushions, <strong>and</strong> decorative<br />

items. Shades of mint green, baby blue, blush pink, <strong>and</strong><br />

buttery yellow can instantly add a touch of Easter<br />

elegance to any room.<br />

Egg-quisite Centerpieces<br />

Easter eggs are an iconic symbol of the season but they<br />

don’t have to just be in the form of chocolate.<br />

Get creative with your centrepiece by arranging a<br />

gorgeous assortment of decorated eggs, flowers <strong>and</strong><br />

greenery this season.<br />

You can experiment with various techniques such as<br />

painting or spraying to create a unique <strong>and</strong> eye-catching<br />

piece that will be the focal point of your dining table.<br />

Bunny Decorations<br />

Bunnies are another classic focal point of Easter <strong>and</strong><br />

incorporating them into your décor is perfect if you have<br />

children living with you or coming over.<br />

Think about adding some bunny-shaped figurines, plush<br />

toys, or just some bunny shaped bunting around your<br />

home. These adorable decorations will not only bring a<br />

smile to your face but also bring something playful to<br />

your Easter décor.<br />

Flowers<br />

Flowers are a key associaton when it comes to spring<br />

making floral arrangements an essential element of<br />

Easter decor.<br />

Opt for seasonal flowers like daffodils <strong>and</strong> tulips to<br />

create beautiful bouquets or floral centrepieces. You can<br />

place them in vases or even use hollowed-out eggshells<br />

for a creative <strong>and</strong> festive touch.<br />

Wreaths<br />

Welcome guests with a festive Easter wreath placed right<br />

on your front door.<br />

A popular décor option, wreaths are a great way of<br />

showing not only your guests, but neighbours that you’re<br />

getting involved with the season.<br />

Consider crafting a DIY wreath using pastel-coloured<br />

ribbons, faux flowers, <strong>and</strong> miniature eggs. Alternatively,<br />

you can purchase a pre-made wreath to save yourself the<br />

hassle!<br />

Easter Themed Table Decorations<br />

Add something extra to your Easter lunch experience<br />

with themed table settings.<br />

Choose themed tablecloths, napkins, <strong>and</strong> placemats to<br />

create a sense of cohesion <strong>and</strong> show your guests you’re<br />

serious about decorating!<br />

If you have kids joining you, most home shops will stock<br />

Easter themed plastic plates, cups <strong>and</strong> napkins for them<br />

to enjoy <strong>and</strong> keep them involved in the festive fun.<br />

Egg Hunt<br />

An absolute ‘must’ if you have children joining you, set<br />

up a fun <strong>and</strong> creative Easter Egg Hunt across your home<br />

<strong>and</strong> garden.<br />

Hide colourful eggs, chocolate treats <strong>and</strong> little surprises<br />

in as many places as you can <strong>and</strong> watch the whole family<br />

get involved in a fun <strong>and</strong> interactive hunt.<br />

By Katie Wilson


Open from March 22nd Every Friday Saturday & Sunday <strong>and</strong><br />

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<strong>Spring</strong> is in the air...<br />

The days are becoming brighter &<br />

lighter & <strong>Spring</strong> is on its way!<br />

Just as the gardens wake up from<br />

the winters slumber & bursts<br />

into life so does our well-being.<br />

With season change comes<br />

transformation & it’s a great time<br />

to de-clutter our space & spring<br />

clean our environment. The body<br />

is no different, a time to let go &<br />

detox, kind of a spring clean on<br />

the inside!<br />

So here’s a few tips for Well-Being<br />

to help us go into <strong>Spring</strong> feeling<br />

vibrant & healthy<br />

Wake Up Earlier<br />

these energies so be sure to create<br />

healthy habits around all these<br />

areas.<br />

Keep Meals Warm & Light<br />

Easily digestible foods are best to<br />

help us shed the denser foods we<br />

have eaten through Winter. Green<br />

leafy veg, green teas & light spices<br />

will help clear away heavier<br />

energies. Make the first drink of<br />

the day warm & spicy to gently<br />

stimulate digestion. Try Lemon,<br />

Ginger, Honey with some Apple<br />

Cider Vinegar to give the gut a<br />

boost. A gentle detox can be a<br />

great boost to the body too. The<br />

Arbonne 7-day cleanse is a<br />

delicious drink to sip through the<br />

day & has a gentle natural detox<br />

effect. Loaded with some essential<br />

vitamins to help balance the body<br />

whilst maintaining hydration. Use<br />

the link below & apply Arbonne10<br />

in the shopping cart to receive a<br />

10% discount<br />

www.Allisontimmins.arbonne.com<br />

Try a New Yoga Routine<br />

A daily yoga practice can be a real<br />

boost to Mind Body & Spirit.<br />

Incorporating some dynamic,<br />

expansive & stimulating<br />

movements such as sun<br />

salutations are great chest<br />

openers. Symbolising a letting in<br />

of the new whilst releasing the<br />

old.<br />

A balance of Yin & Yang can<br />

provide balance & harmony & also<br />

are restorative, grounding,<br />

centering & allow us to be in the<br />

moment & present. Pick a time of<br />

day that suits you best. Some<br />

postures upon awakening are<br />

great to get the day started whilst<br />

some more relaxing postures are a<br />

good way to wind down from the<br />

day at night.<br />

Gail Cooper from Meridian Life<br />

runs a great online class that can<br />

be done from your yoga mat in<br />

your own home! A perfect way to<br />

introduce a Yoga practice that is<br />

time efficient too!<br />

You can find class details here at<br />

www.meridianlife.co.uk<br />

Happy <strong>Spring</strong>!<br />

Allison Timmins is a<br />

Holistic Wellbeing<br />

Practitioner, Colour<br />

Therapist & ‘Your Sleep<br />

Matters’ enthusiast<br />

For more information on<br />

her Wellbeing Therapies<br />

contact her on<br />

07950 993380<br />

Making the most of the early<br />

morning light can really boost our<br />

mental health as well as our<br />

physical body. Waking before 7am<br />

is a sure way to capture the lighter<br />

mornings & will help us to recharge<br />

the body with vitality &<br />

energy. Getting out into nature<br />

will support your body’s efforts to<br />

adjust to ‘<strong>Spring</strong> time’ as a clock<br />

change is due around the <strong>Spring</strong><br />

Equinox, the 31st March. Giving<br />

yourself equal rest, sleep &<br />

exercise can help synchronise with


SPRING <strong>2024</strong><br />

t: 01746 766477<br />

BOOK ON LINE at www.theatreonthesteps.co.uk<br />

Surf's Up<br />

SATURDAY 23rd MARCH 8pm & SUNDAY 24th MARCH 3pm<br />

Spectacular Beach Boys tribute b<strong>and</strong> Surf's Up return to Theatre on the Steps for an unbelievable<br />

show where they will play EVERY UK HIT this wonderful b<strong>and</strong> has ever had.<br />

As a rare treat, part of our matinée show will feature a 'campfire' sing-a-long 'unplugged' session. You<br />

can join us in belting out some of these wonderful tunes! Tickets from £14.50<br />

Jekyll <strong>and</strong> Hyde<br />

FRIDAY 5th APRIL <strong>2024</strong> 7:30 pm<br />

Journey with us to Victorian London, <strong>and</strong> experience the unbridled horror of this perennial favourite.<br />

The City is paralyzed with fear when the repugnant <strong>and</strong> wicked Mr Hyde embarks upon his criminal<br />

spree. But what is his shocking secret, <strong>and</strong> what possible connection can he have with the dour <strong>and</strong><br />

respectable Dr Jekyll? Tickets from £10<br />

The Rod Stewart Songbook<br />

FRIDAY 19th APRIL <strong>2024</strong> 8:00 pm<br />

The Rod Stewart Songbook’s spectacular theatre production is the ultimate homage to Rod Stewart,<br />

featuring Pete McCall, Europe’s foremost tribute. Along with his sensational live b<strong>and</strong>, you will be<br />

taken on a musical journey spanning 50 years, when one of rock music’s greatest icons sold over<br />

250 million records worldwide. Tickets £23<br />

FLEETWOOD SHACK<br />

FRIDAY 26th APRIL 8pm & SATURDAY 27th APRIL 8pm<br />

This is an incredible tribute b<strong>and</strong> that celebrates the music of the world-famous b<strong>and</strong> Fleetwood<br />

Mac! This <strong>South</strong> Wales based b<strong>and</strong> has performed all over the UK <strong>and</strong> Internationally in Theatres,<br />

Corporate Events, Festivals & other top venues. Tickets £20<br />

NEW AMEN CORNER<br />

FRIDAY 3rd MAY <strong>2024</strong> 8:00 pm<br />

The show is a fast moving ride through the era, which bought us the mini car, the mini skirt &<br />

exceptional music.The authentic sound of the 60s with New Amen Corner. It’s a show with that real<br />

feel good factor.New Amen Corner are currently one of the most popular sixties b<strong>and</strong>s on the scene<br />

with multiple UK &European tours under their belts Tickets £21<br />

TOWN HALL, HIGH STREET, BRIDGNORTH<br />

www.theatreonthesteps.co.uk


Plan your<br />

summer of fun!<br />

Shrewsbury LOOPFEST<br />

Friday 3rd – Sunday 5th May<br />

Various Locations Across<br />

Shrewsbury<br />

LOOPFest is a three-day multi-venue arts <strong>and</strong><br />

musical festival held in Shrewsbury.<br />

A free entry charity-fundraising festival,<br />

LOOPFEST features over 80 acts <strong>and</strong> 200<br />

performers <strong>and</strong> music begins from midday<br />

continuing into the evening.<br />

The festival will be fundraising for the Servern<br />

Hospice <strong>and</strong> the Shrewsbury <strong>and</strong> Telford<br />

Hospital Neonatal Department.<br />

Shrewsbury Food<br />

Festival<br />

Saturday 29th June <strong>2024</strong><br />

Shrewsbury Quarry Park<br />

Bringing over 200 different food, drink <strong>and</strong><br />

craft exhibitors to the heart of Shrewbury, this<br />

festival isn’t just a food festival.<br />

With live music, a children’s area <strong>and</strong> a Field to<br />

Fork area, there’s plenty for the whole family to<br />

explore <strong>and</strong> enjoy this summer.<br />

Not only is the food available to buy, there’s<br />

also be a range of demonstrations for the<br />

foodies to make note of as well as a special<br />

celebrity guest.<br />

AlderFest Family Music<br />

Festival<br />

Friday/Sat 5th & 6th- July<br />

Alderford Lake, Whitchurch<br />

AlderFest Family Music Festival is a great<br />

weekend packed with fun for all the family with<br />

a big line-up <strong>and</strong> bags of entertainment.<br />

Back for its third year, the festival features a<br />

range of live artists <strong>and</strong> music including the<br />

return of Friday Night Dance Anthems, back for<br />

<strong>2024</strong>.<br />

Featuring local food of a variety of cuisines as<br />

well as their Lakeside Takeaway, there’s also<br />

plenty of refreshments on offer with limited<br />

wild camping pitches available.<br />

https://alderfest.com/


place on the streets of Oswestry on the weekend<br />

of 6th <strong>and</strong> 7th July <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

A free, family event filled with the finest local<br />

food <strong>and</strong> drink producers from all over both<br />

Shropshire <strong>and</strong> North Wales, the event is also<br />

packed with street entertainment <strong>and</strong> music for<br />

everybody to enjoy.<br />

Penkridge Open Air<br />

Festival<br />

5th - 7th July <strong>2024</strong><br />

Penkridge Sports <strong>and</strong> Recreation<br />

Centre (Monckton), Pinfold Lane,<br />

ST19 5QP<br />

Immerse yourself in a world of music with live<br />

performances by top-notch artists, b<strong>and</strong>s, <strong>and</strong><br />

local talent across multiple stages.Savor delicious<br />

cuisine from food trucks <strong>and</strong> stalls offering a<br />

diverse range of culinary delights. Explore a<br />

vibrant arts <strong>and</strong> crafts market featuring the work<br />

of talented artisans <strong>and</strong> creators. Enjoy familyfriendly<br />

activities, games, <strong>and</strong> entertainment for<br />

all ages. Sip on refreshing beverages, <strong>and</strong> soak up<br />

the summer vibes. www.penkridgeopenair.co.uk/<br />

Oswestry Food & Drink<br />

Festival<br />

6th July – 7th July (All Day)<br />

Oswestry Town<br />

Oswestry’s Food <strong>and</strong> Drink Festival is due to take<br />

PLAY Festival<br />

August 14th - 18th August<br />

HOPTON COURT, HOPTON<br />

WAFERS, DY14 0EF<br />

Join us in August at Hopton Court in celebration<br />

of our love for circus, flow <strong>and</strong> fringe arts.<br />

Bringing you the best in shows, workshops,<br />

music, fun, <strong>and</strong> adventures every day, for all ages<br />

<strong>and</strong> skills levels.We can't wait to see you in the<br />

field in August. https://play-festival.co.uk/<br />

Camp Bestival<br />

Thursday 15th August – Sunday<br />

18th August <strong>2024</strong><br />

Weston Park, Shropshire<br />

Following the success of recent years, Camp<br />

Bestival will this year be taking place in the heart<br />

of the Midl<strong>and</strong>s offering fun for the whole family.<br />

With green spaces, lakes, parkl<strong>and</strong>s <strong>and</strong><br />

woodl<strong>and</strong>s, guests can<br />

enjoy an array of family<br />

fun with whole arenas<br />

<strong>and</strong> multiple activities,<br />

food <strong>and</strong> drink.<br />

Details of this year’s<br />

line-up <strong>and</strong> activities are<br />

due to be announced<br />

soon.


TWO PINTS WITH WILL & RALF<br />

APRIL FOOLS LIVE TOUR <strong>2024</strong> Interview by Carl Marsh<br />

For nearly 10 years, Will Mellor<br />

<strong>and</strong> Ralf Little were the voice of<br />

a generation – notorious for<br />

pushing the boundaries of<br />

acceptable humour on British<br />

TV. After multiple failed<br />

attempts to reunite them, the<br />

boys began their Two Pints with<br />

Will & Ralf podcast in 2020.<br />

The duo are now back with the<br />

latest fourth series of the hit<br />

podcast.<br />

Enjoying the kind of banter that<br />

only true friends can have, Will <strong>and</strong><br />

Ralf chat nonsense to each other, to<br />

fellow celebs <strong>and</strong> to guests with<br />

fascinating stories to tell...all over<br />

two pints <strong>and</strong> a hearty helping of<br />

bar snacks.<br />

(For legal purposes our lovely<br />

lawyers want us to point out this<br />

podcast is in no way related to a<br />

former BBC TV show of a similar<br />

name.)<br />

With this being the second<br />

time you're taking ‘Two Pints<br />

with Will & Ralf’ on the road,<br />

what were your highlights<br />

from the last tour?<br />

Will - Honestly, every venue<br />

brought something different to it.<br />

They laugh at different things, their<br />

humour is a little bit different <strong>and</strong><br />

we have audience participation<br />

(they send in their stories), so<br />

everything was different every<br />

night.<br />

I don't know whether there's a<br />

highlight… Newcastle, we could<br />

have sold out twice last time. Their<br />

humour seems to be very, very<br />

much on point with what our<br />

podcast is about. Leave your brain<br />

at the door, let's have a good laugh<br />

<strong>and</strong> have a few drinks <strong>and</strong> it went<br />

down a storm. I can't wait to go<br />

back there, everywhere up North is<br />

like that, it's our kind of humour.<br />

Ralf - Every night felt pretty<br />

freeform, in so much as the<br />

audience interaction every day was<br />

different, which was fun for us <strong>and</strong><br />

the audience. Some people came<br />

more than once <strong>and</strong> followed us<br />

around (the UK)!<br />

Will - Although, when we played<br />

London last time at the Shepherds<br />

Bush Empire, it was great. I<br />

thought they would just sit there<br />

<strong>and</strong> say, "Go on, entertain us", but<br />

they didn't, they all got involved. It<br />

was also after Covid, <strong>and</strong> it was just<br />

like, 'We've had enough of all the<br />

bad news, let's forget about all that<br />

<strong>and</strong> have a good laugh for a couple<br />

of hours, have a few beers, <strong>and</strong> see<br />

what happens, with a few surprises<br />

along the way". I can't wait to do it<br />

again.<br />

So, are you counting down the<br />

days when the boys can go back<br />

on tour, leaving any family life<br />

<strong>and</strong> commitments behind for<br />

those few weeks?<br />

Ralf - That's more of a question for<br />

Will because I don't have any family<br />

life. I just sit around playing the<br />

PlayStation, <strong>and</strong> that's why I look<br />

so young, <strong>and</strong> Will's hair is falling<br />

out!<br />

Will - We will only do Fridays <strong>and</strong><br />

Saturdays because Ralf can't spend<br />

more than four days away from his<br />

PlayStation. So the tour is shorter<br />

<strong>and</strong> for those that come, it will feel<br />

like a good night out, <strong>and</strong> that's<br />

what we want <strong>and</strong> what this podcast<br />

was designed for in Lockdown. It<br />

was for people who couldn't get out<br />

to the pub <strong>and</strong> were struggling, so<br />

they tuned in. It took off, <strong>and</strong><br />

people enjoyed us two talking<br />

nonsense like we did in 'Two Pints…<br />

' as Gaz <strong>and</strong> Jonny.<br />

Before you appeared in the TV<br />

series' Two Pints of Lager <strong>and</strong><br />

a Packet of Crisps', were you<br />

aware of or perhaps even knew<br />

one another?


Ralf - I think we'd met briefly<br />

several times, sort of out <strong>and</strong> about.<br />

Will - You came to the… one of the<br />

Hollyoaks houses when we were<br />

doing the 'Men in Black' dance in the<br />

living room.<br />

Ralf - [Laughs] I did, yeah. So,<br />

here's the story: pre-'Royal Family'<br />

before I've started my career, my<br />

good friend, that I grew up with <strong>and</strong><br />

used to go to the same local drama<br />

group was in 'Hollyoaks' with Will,<br />

Matt Littler, he played Max<br />

Cunningham. He told me that there<br />

was a big Halloween party at a<br />

Hollyoaks house because the boys all<br />

had a house, <strong>and</strong> the girls had one,<br />

too. So, me <strong>and</strong> Matt went as Batman<br />

<strong>and</strong> Robin, because it's fancy dress,<br />

<strong>and</strong> I think Will went as a vampire,<br />

<strong>and</strong> he was like, [Speaks in a rubbish<br />

Manchester accent] "Alright, mate.<br />

Sound". You know, like he does!<br />

[Laughter] And we all then went<br />

about our evening until 'Men in<br />

Black' came on, <strong>and</strong> the dance<br />

started <strong>and</strong> I was like, "I know this<br />

dance". As I started doing it, Will<br />

was doing it next to me. So, at least<br />

two or three years before we ever did<br />

'Two Pints of Lager <strong>and</strong> a Packet of<br />

Crisps', Will Mellor <strong>and</strong> I, not really<br />

knowing each other, were there<br />

giving it large to Will Smith! That<br />

sort of set the tone forever, really.<br />

Ralf, when you got offered the<br />

lead role in 'Death in Paradise',<br />

did you need to consider<br />

accepting it for more than two<br />

seconds with all those months<br />

spent away in the Caribbean?<br />

Ralf - No! I got an email from my<br />

agent. I skimmed the email, <strong>and</strong> I am<br />

a little bit annoyed, I was thinking<br />

that they need to think about the<br />

emails they send me because I've<br />

already been in 'Death in Paradise'.<br />

And they should know that I've<br />

already been in it. I was about to<br />

call, <strong>and</strong> then I reread the email. It<br />

said for the 'Lead Detective'. I was<br />

like, "Oh, that's a slightly different<br />

email than I thought it was, maybe<br />

I'm glad I didn't make that call". So,<br />

I went <strong>and</strong> had a meeting, did a little<br />

reading, <strong>and</strong> then, like with all kinds<br />

of auditions <strong>and</strong> meetings, you forget<br />

about it <strong>and</strong> I thought, "Well, I'll<br />

never hear about that again" because<br />

that's usually how it works. Then I<br />

was on holiday on the west coast of<br />

Irel<strong>and</strong>, driving around <strong>and</strong> it was<br />

raining, <strong>and</strong> my phone rang, <strong>and</strong> it's<br />

my agent. I stepped out of the car,<br />

<strong>and</strong> anyone that would have been<br />

watching me would have seen me<br />

suddenly start dancing around in the<br />

rain, in the car park. I just knew I<br />

had this part <strong>and</strong> then went out on a<br />

boat <strong>and</strong> saw this little dolphin<br />

swimming around this western Irish<br />

Bay just going, "My life in the last<br />

five minutes has gone really<br />

strange".<br />

Will - That's the magic of what we<br />

do. One minute, it's boring, <strong>and</strong> then<br />

your life in the next year will be<br />

completely different. That's what's<br />

exciting about acting.<br />

Ralf– So yeah, that was it. It was<br />

pretty amazing. And no, I didn't<br />

hesitate for two seconds.<br />

Will, would you ever go on 'I'm<br />

a Celebrity… Get Me Out of<br />

Here!' because I know you did<br />

that sketch for Keith Lemon<br />

years ago which people still<br />

think was real?<br />

Will - Well, to first answer your<br />

question, people think I've done 'I'm<br />

a Celebrity…' because of that sketch<br />

as it goes viral every year, <strong>and</strong> do<br />

you know what? I would say no. But<br />

I did say no about 'Strictly', but there<br />

was always more chance of me doing<br />

'Strictly' than 'I'm a Celebrity…', just<br />

because I'll be bored, I hate camping,<br />

its full of bugs <strong>and</strong> I am scared of<br />

spiders. So, listen, it could be<br />

entertaining for everybody…<br />

Ralf - Will said one of the immortal<br />

quotes in one of our early podcasts<br />

where he said, "I mean, you can<br />

never say never though, can you?<br />

Because if I haven't got any work<br />

going on. And I'm struggling to pay<br />

my tax bill; you never know, you<br />

might see me there next year with a<br />

crocodile appendage in my mouth".<br />

And he did a little Groucho Marx<br />

thing as well, which I'll never forget<br />

until the day I die.<br />

Will - Listen, If you see me on it,<br />

I've had a bad year. I need to pay my<br />

tax bill. So there you go! [Laughter]<br />

And Ralf, would you ever be<br />

tempted to follow in Will's<br />

footsteps <strong>and</strong> do 'Strictly Come<br />

Dancing', if asked?<br />

Ralf - With Strictly, I think it is a<br />

little different than all of those other<br />

shows. I feel like if you can genuinely<br />

have a challenge, learn a skill, <strong>and</strong><br />

learn something, you'll carry it with<br />

you for the rest of your life, whether<br />

it's 'Strictly' or 'Dancing on Ice',<br />

which would be another one - what a<br />

fantastic skill to learn. The only ones<br />

I've ever done are football-related<br />

ones because I obviously love<br />

football, It's not something that I'm<br />

particularly keen to do.<br />

Will - You can dance though. You've<br />

got rhythm.<br />

Ralf - Oh, I'd win it.<br />

Will - Hold on! You'd win it?<br />

Ralf - I will never say never; I'm 43<br />

now, nearly 44, <strong>and</strong> I might say to<br />

myself soon that it is an experience<br />

I'd like to have. I don't see it right<br />

now, but absolutely, never say never.<br />

Will - We will chat on tour about it,<br />

<strong>and</strong> I will see if I can get an answer<br />

from him. So, if you come to the<br />

tour, we might have a little chat on<br />

stage about it, or we might even put<br />

Ralf through his paces, <strong>and</strong> I might<br />

have to show him a few steps.<br />

See what happens when we come<br />

together? Madness. [Laughter]<br />

Tickets are on general<br />

sale via<br />

www.twopintspodcast.com<br />

4-Apr-24 Leeds City<br />

Varieties<br />

5-Apr-24 Manchester Albert<br />

Hall<br />

6-Apr-24 Newcastle O2 City<br />

Hall<br />

19-Apr-24 Birmingham O2<br />

Academy<br />

26-Apr-24 Nottingham Royal<br />

Concert Hall<br />

27-Apr-24 <strong>Wolverhampton</strong><br />

The Wulfrun at The Halls<br />

28-Apr-24 Sheffield City<br />

Hall<br />

Follow Two Pints Pod:<br />

Twitter / Instagram /<br />

Facebook


Travel<br />

Travel Ideas On A<br />

Budget<br />

Just because you’re on a budget<br />

this year, doesn’t mean you<br />

have to miss out when it comes<br />

to travelling.<br />

Whether you’re looking for a<br />

cheaper break abroad or just a<br />

weekend getaway, there’s<br />

options for anyone being that<br />

bit extra careful with the pennis<br />

this year.<br />

Time Away In Turkey<br />

across the UK; Wales has a whole host of locations to<br />

suit your break away be it in the Welsh valleys or<br />

alongside the coast.<br />

Spend your time away exploring the countryside, the<br />

beach or even the smaller towns you otherwise wouldn’t<br />

have visited. Take some board games or DVD’s with you<br />

<strong>and</strong> just enjoy some downtime with your loved ones<br />

somewhere new.<br />

Check Out Lisbon<br />

In the Post Office Travel Money’s annual City Costs<br />

Barometer, Lisbon came top of the best-value European<br />

cities.<br />

Known for it’s beautiful architecture <strong>and</strong> history, Lisbon<br />

is full of colour, vibrancy <strong>and</strong> delicious food for you to<br />

enjoy. So, whether you’re looking to exp<strong>and</strong> your<br />

knowledge of Portuguese history or relax with a good<br />

view, a glass of wine <strong>and</strong> a good meal, Lisbon should<br />

definitely be on your budget travel list this year.<br />

Average prices of a coffee are at £1.50, a beer at £2.50<br />

<strong>and</strong> the average price of an evening meal at just £14.00.<br />

Camping<br />

For those looking for a budget-friendly holiday abroad,<br />

Turkey is an ideal option.<br />

Last year, you were able to buy more than twice as much<br />

for every pound as you could in 2021, making Turkey a<br />

perfect choice for those holidaying on a budget.<br />

Currently the average price of a coffee or beer is around<br />

£2.00-£2.50 with an evening meal coming in at around<br />

£6.50.<br />

For those looking for a lively holiday, the buzzling resort<br />

of Marmaris or Bodrum would be obvious choices with<br />

an array of restaurants, bars as well as a charming old<br />

quarter. Alternatively, those looking for a quieter break<br />

away, Daylan is a far more tranquil <strong>and</strong> still beautiful<br />

holiday spot.<br />

If you’re someone that enjoys the outdoors, camping is a<br />

great budget-friendly option for your getaway this year.<br />

There are a whole host of camping sites across the UK<br />

<strong>and</strong> many of them charge very little if you’re taking your<br />

own tents <strong>and</strong> equipment.<br />

Make the most of being outdoors <strong>and</strong> have some good<br />

old-fashioned time away without electronics, just recharging<br />

your batters <strong>and</strong> getting connected with nature.<br />

Ideal for a cheaper weekend away with your partner,<br />

spend the evening in a sleeping bag looking up at the<br />

stars or take a couple of bottles of wine <strong>and</strong> just spend<br />

some quality time with friends.<br />

Holiday Cottages In The UK<br />

Another great travel idea, a cottage holiday in the UK<br />

comes without the added expense or stress of flying.<br />

There are many beautiful holiday cottages scattered<br />

By Katie Wilson


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Follow our news on<br />

41


Travel<br />

Luxury Travel Ideas For<br />

The New Year<br />

Are you looking to bring some<br />

luxury into your <strong>2024</strong>? Whether<br />

you’re a frequent traveller or<br />

someone that’s done little of it<br />

in recent years, when it comes<br />

to luxury travel, there’s<br />

something for every holiday<br />

maker to enjoy.<br />

Have a look at some of the top<br />

luxury ideas recommended by<br />

travel experts for <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

Explore History In Greece<br />

With it’s forests <strong>and</strong> National Parks, whale watching <strong>and</strong><br />

the tallest mountains in North America, a cruise to<br />

Alaska opens a whole new world of natural beauty.<br />

Visit The Caribbean Isl<strong>and</strong>s<br />

With its gorgeous turquoise waters, beautiful scenery<br />

<strong>and</strong> divine restaurants, the Caribbean isl<strong>and</strong>s are truly a<br />

place of luxury.<br />

With each isl<strong>and</strong> offering a different personality <strong>and</strong><br />

adventure, there is something for every traveller to<br />

enjoy. Whether you’re looking for a romantic getaway in<br />

the Grenadines, a place to enjoy luxury <strong>and</strong> fine dining<br />

in the British Virgin Isl<strong>and</strong>s or finally see the wonder<br />

that is Barbados, the Caribbean will leave you spoilt for<br />

choice.<br />

Isl<strong>and</strong> hopping is a great choice for those wanting to<br />

explore as much as they can in their time <strong>and</strong> will also<br />

give you a holiday full of flexibility. You can make the<br />

most of what each isl<strong>and</strong> has to offer while also having<br />

some time to sit back <strong>and</strong> just take it all in.<br />

Go Sun Seeking In Bali<br />

For those looking for complete luxury <strong>and</strong> relaxation in<br />

the sunshine, Bali has to be a part of your travel plans<br />

for <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

For those wanting to bring some culture <strong>and</strong> ancient<br />

history into their travels, Greece is splattered with sites<br />

<strong>and</strong> myths all over its mainl<strong>and</strong> <strong>and</strong> isl<strong>and</strong>s.<br />

Athens is a top spot for history lovers, being one of the<br />

world’s oldest cities <strong>and</strong> the history capital of Europe.<br />

Why not spend a few days in Greece exploring its history<br />

before stopping at one of its gorgeous beach resorts for<br />

some luxurious down-time? Full of 5* hotels, spas <strong>and</strong><br />

beautiful beaches, Greece is one of the best places for<br />

those looking to travel in style this year.<br />

Take A Cruise Of Alaska<br />

Cruises are a perfect option for travellers wanting to see<br />

the world while also experiencing luxury. While many<br />

cruises are packed full of activities <strong>and</strong> experiences<br />

onboard, delicious meals <strong>and</strong> glasses of champagne from<br />

the deck, a cruise isn’t only about the time on the ship.<br />

Bali provides a perfect mix of outdoor activities such as<br />

snorkelling <strong>and</strong> boarding with the stunning natural<br />

l<strong>and</strong>scapes for those that just want to sit back <strong>and</strong> soak<br />

it all in.<br />

Bali is often packed full of wellness retreats allowing you<br />

the opportunity to soak up the sunshine, enjoy visits to<br />

the spa <strong>and</strong> just<br />

simply enjoy the<br />

luxury the place<br />

has to offer.<br />

Whether you’re<br />

looking for a<br />

romantic getaway<br />

for you <strong>and</strong> your<br />

partner or just a<br />

beautiful spot to<br />

enjoy fine dining<br />

<strong>and</strong> scenery, Bali<br />

could just be your<br />

perfect luxury<br />

break<br />

By Katie Wilson


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Pets<br />

Cats: Should They Be<br />

Kept Indoors or Have<br />

Access Outdoors?<br />

The debate on indoor vs outdoor<br />

cats is one that often plagues cat<br />

owners, particularly those that<br />

have just adopted a furry friend<br />

for the first time<br />

Historically cats have often been pets that have free<br />

roam of the outside world with space indoors for when<br />

they want it but over time more <strong>and</strong> more pet owners<br />

have made the decision to keep their cats exclusively<br />

inside.<br />

pet’s health <strong>and</strong> any animal can unfortunately become<br />

ill, cats that are kept indoors are easier to monitor for<br />

illness.<br />

It’s far more difficult to assess your cat for any signs of<br />

illness if they spend long amounts of time outdoors. If<br />

they’re toileting as they should, if there’s any vomiting<br />

or obvious signs of illness <strong>and</strong> exactly how much or what<br />

they are ingesting.<br />

For owners that keep their cat permanently inside, they<br />

can keep an eye on their behavioural patterns, diet <strong>and</strong><br />

any signs that they something could be wrong.<br />

Today it’s thought that close to 25% of owned cats in<br />

Britain are kept either exclusively inside or for the<br />

majority of the time.<br />

Being Kept Indoors Is Safer<br />

It’s no secret that keeping your cat inside your home is<br />

the safer option. Cats that are allowed free roam of the<br />

outdoors are far more likely to get into altercations with<br />

other free-roaming cats that can cause them injuries or<br />

infections.<br />

Naturally hunters, outdoor cats will often search for<br />

smaller animals to capture which can also cause them<br />

injury but also makes them more prone to picking up<br />

illnesses from infected animals.<br />

Outdoor cats are also subjected to the unfortunate risk<br />

of accidents. In 2022, a UK Parliament motion heard<br />

that sadly up to 230,000 cats are hit by cars every year.<br />

While the risk can be limited for cats that roam in more<br />

isolated areas, there’s no guarantee that your cat is safe<br />

especially if they like to explore.<br />

Indoor Cats Are Less Likely to Become<br />

Seriously Ill<br />

While there’s never a guarantee when it comes to your<br />

Is It Cruel To Keep Cats Inside?<br />

One of the biggest worries of cat owners is that by<br />

keeping their pet inside, they are limiting their life <strong>and</strong><br />

happiness.<br />

While it’s almost impossible to tell if a cat would enjoy<br />

life more by having the freedom of being outside, cats<br />

can live happy <strong>and</strong> content lives provided they have the<br />

some level of enrichment within their home.<br />

Cat toys, play apparatus <strong>and</strong> spaces for them to run <strong>and</strong><br />

‘play hunt’ are important for cats to have some sense of<br />

freedom <strong>and</strong> enjoyment <strong>and</strong> something any owner<br />

should consider before they make a decision on whether<br />

they allow them access to the outside world.<br />

Cats Have Varying Personalities<br />

Cats, alike any animal all have their own personalities.<br />

Some cats are more interested in hunting <strong>and</strong> exploring<br />

than others while some are quite happy just sleeping <strong>and</strong><br />

relaxing somewhere warm <strong>and</strong> comfortable.<br />

Whatever you consider, it’s important to think about<br />

what’s best for your pet rather than making a decision<br />

based on stereotypes or what works for other cat owners.<br />

By Katie Wilson


<strong>South</strong>water Veterinary<br />

Group has now opened<br />

a new state-of-the-art<br />

veterinary practice on<br />

Stafford Park, Telford.<br />

The br<strong>and</strong>-new, purpose-built building is now<br />

open in Stafford Park, Telford, under a team of<br />

veterinarians with more than 50 years of<br />

combined experience.<br />

With a fantastic team, patients will be at the heart<br />

of the new, independent <strong>South</strong>water Vets practice,<br />

offering both routine pet care <strong>and</strong> more advanced<br />

surgical <strong>and</strong> diagnostic treatments.<br />

<strong>South</strong>water Veterinary Group co-founder Rob<br />

Hamilton said: “We pride ourselves on really<br />

getting to know our patients <strong>and</strong> their owners<br />

throughout their lives.<br />

“Having a purpose-built building that meets the<br />

needs of our staff <strong>and</strong> patients, including a<br />

NOW OPEN<br />

Wright House, Stafford Court,<br />

Stafford Park, Telford TF3 3BD<br />

To register your<br />

furry friends with us<br />

<strong>and</strong> for more information<br />

visit:<br />

www.southwatervets.co.uk<br />

01952 309306<br />

surgical suite <strong>and</strong> a CT scanner, means pets <strong>and</strong><br />

their owners will get<br />

exceptional service.”<br />

Co-founder Ryan<br />

Davis added:<br />

“Owners will also be<br />

safe in the<br />

knowledge that their<br />

pet is being left in<br />

trusted h<strong>and</strong>s. We<br />

look forward to welcoming our new clients <strong>and</strong><br />

pets.”<br />

To register for the practice, or to find out more<br />

information, visit<br />

www.southwatervets.co.uk<br />

Ryan Davis<br />

Rob Hamilton


Pets<br />

Hiring Dog Fields: What<br />

Are The Benefits?<br />

Hiring exclusive fields is<br />

becoming a more <strong>and</strong> more<br />

popular options for dog owners<br />

today. Designed for your dog’s<br />

enrichment, these fields are<br />

often a large enclosed space to<br />

allow your dog some freedom<br />

without the fear of them<br />

escaping.<br />

But what are the benefits of<br />

these spaces?<br />

They Are Ideal for Timid Dogs<br />

These exclusive fields are ideal for dogs with more timid<br />

personalities.<br />

If your dog is nervous being out in louder spaces with<br />

other animals around, these fields can be a great option<br />

for allowing them the freedom to run <strong>and</strong> exercise<br />

without the worry of how they’ll cope with other people<br />

<strong>and</strong> animals.<br />

These spaces allow your dog(s) the space to run, fetch a<br />

ball <strong>and</strong> play without the concern of something spooking<br />

them during their play time.<br />

They Are Great for Exercise<br />

Secure fields are a great option for giving your dog a<br />

solid hour or so of exercise.<br />

While walking your dog daily on a lead will help them to<br />

burn calories <strong>and</strong> get their blood flowing, time off their<br />

lead is always more effective when it comes to exercise<br />

(particularly if your pooch has put on a pound or two<br />

over Christmas).<br />

Some fields come with built in safe apparatus that your<br />

dog will enjoy running <strong>and</strong> jumping on. But for those<br />

that don’t, take a ball or a stick <strong>and</strong> spend an hour<br />

throwing it for your dog in the comfort that they’re safe<br />

<strong>and</strong> secure.<br />

It’s A Good Option for Reactive Dogs<br />

If your dog doesn’t get on well with other dogs, or even<br />

will just spend lengths of time barking at other animals,<br />

this is a great way of eliminating that stress.<br />

Dogs that are reactive are usually that way out of fear or<br />

anxiety of other animals or people. By spending the<br />

money on hiring a space for your dog, you know they can<br />

have some solid play time without the worry of another<br />

dog appearing <strong>and</strong> stressing them out.<br />

It’s also a great way of boosting your dog’s confidence<br />

outdoors as they can associate time outside with fun,<br />

freedom <strong>and</strong> fresh air rather than the stress of new<br />

people or animals that may intimidate them.<br />

Most Fields Won’t Break the Bank<br />

The general cost of hiring the space for an hour sits<br />

between £10-£20.<br />

While it’s not the free option of taking them to your<br />

local park, it’s also not a cost that is unreasonable. Even<br />

giving your dog the time once a month or once every<br />

couple of months will give you the confidence that<br />

they’ve had some time outdoors stress-free to exercise<br />

without any stress or worry.<br />

If you look at it as the cost of three or four cups of coffee<br />

from the bigger chains or a trip to the fish <strong>and</strong> chip<br />

shop, when you look at the benefits of doing so, it<br />

certainly makes it worth it.<br />

By Katie Wilson


“<br />


Mens Health<br />

Men’s Health Tips for<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> <strong>2024</strong><br />

With the hustle <strong>and</strong> bustle of<br />

everyday life, it can be a<br />

struggle for men to prioritise<br />

their health, both mental <strong>and</strong><br />

physical.<br />

However, with a growing<br />

awareness of the importance of<br />

well-being, the approach to<br />

men’s health is starting to reshape<br />

across the UK <strong>and</strong> the<br />

globe.<br />

Have a read of our 6 top tips for<br />

men’s health this spring <strong>and</strong><br />

begin to take charge of your own<br />

wellbeing.<br />

encouraged to actively engage in practices that benefit<br />

their mental well-being.<br />

This includes mindfulness activities, meditation, as well<br />

as practical stress management techniques. Taking<br />

breaks during your working day, establishing a healthy<br />

work-life balance, <strong>and</strong> seeking professional help are all<br />

steps you should be considering to prioritise your<br />

mental health.<br />

Eating A Balanced Diet<br />

A well-balanced diet is fundamental to men's health <strong>and</strong><br />

this doesn’t mean the stereotype of just meat, carbs <strong>and</strong><br />

eggs.<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> is the ideal time to enjoy fresh, seasonal fruits<br />

<strong>and</strong> vegetables <strong>and</strong> start experimenting when it comes to<br />

your meals. While lean meats <strong>and</strong> oily fish are important<br />

parts of your diet, there are plenty of varying options<br />

when it comes to side dishes, vegetables <strong>and</strong> methods of<br />

incorporating these into a delicious dish.<br />

Stock up on recipe books <strong>and</strong> start experimenting with<br />

your meals this spring; it’s a great way of making sure<br />

you’re eating a balanced <strong>and</strong> varied diet while also<br />

getting a good intake of all the important nutrients <strong>and</strong><br />

vitamins.<br />

Don’t Skip On Health Check-Ups<br />

Prevention is the key to maintaining good health <strong>and</strong><br />

regular health check-ups are vital to spot any issues or<br />

illnesses.<br />

Don’t take the old-school martyr approach of saying ‘I’ll<br />

be fine’ <strong>and</strong> be proactive when it comes to prioritising<br />

your physical health.<br />

Isn’t it better for the doctors to say your concern was all<br />

for nothing than to leave something that could cause you<br />

real damage in the long-run?<br />

Be Mindful Of The Pub Culture<br />

Pub culture is something that’s engrained into society<br />

<strong>and</strong> it’s easy to fall into the trap of just going along with<br />

what everybody else is doing.<br />

Be mindful when it comes to a ‘couple of drinks’ down<br />

the pub <strong>and</strong> make sure you’re drinking in moderation.<br />

While all of us like to have a good time, this doesn’t<br />

need to involve copious amounts of alcohol.<br />

Embrace Outdoor Fitness<br />

As temperatures begin to rise, spring is the perfect time<br />

to re-start those outdoor activities.<br />

Whether it’s cycling along scenic routes, running in your<br />

local area or starting a Sunday League team, now is a<br />

great time to make the most of exercise opportunities<br />

outdoors.<br />

Not only does it enhance your physical health, but the<br />

fresh air <strong>and</strong> exposure to natural sunlight will also boost<br />

your mood <strong>and</strong> support your mental well-being.<br />

Prioritise Your Mental Health<br />

The importance of men’s mental health has received<br />

wide recognition in more recent years <strong>and</strong> men are being<br />

If heading down the pub is more of a social event for<br />

you, there’s nothing wrong with just sticking to the one<br />

pint <strong>and</strong> then switching to non-alcoholic alternatives.<br />

Not only is drinking in moderation important for your<br />

physical health, as a depressant, it’s also vital for your<br />

mental well-being.<br />

Be As Active As You Can Be At Work<br />

For those of us with office jobs, it can be difficult to stay<br />

active <strong>and</strong> not just remain at a desk for the majority of<br />

your working day.<br />

Make the most of lunch breaks <strong>and</strong> head out on a walk<br />

to keep active <strong>and</strong> keep the juices flowing. It will help<br />

you to feel more alert <strong>and</strong> likely have an impact on your<br />

thinking power <strong>and</strong> work quality as well as your overall<br />

health.<br />

By Katie Wilson


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49


Out And About: Blow Off The<br />

Winter Cobwebs With A Good Walk<br />

With the colder weather soon to be behind<br />

us (hopefully!), now is the best time to be<br />

heading out on some good walks to blow off<br />

those winter cobwebs.<br />

Whether you’re looking for a solo walk for<br />

yourself <strong>and</strong> your dogs, some quality time<br />

outdoors with a partner or a full family<br />

walk over the Easter holidays, Shropshire<br />

has something for everyone to make the<br />

most of.<br />

Have a read of our top spots across<br />

Shropshire for your spring walk <strong>and</strong> get<br />

ready to stick on those walking boots.<br />

Carding Mill Valley<br />

For wildlife lovers, Carding Mill Valley <strong>and</strong> the<br />

Long Mynd should definitely be on your list for<br />

this season. The valley features a wildlife-rich<br />

stream <strong>and</strong> heathl<strong>and</strong> for you to spot <strong>and</strong> enjoy<br />

all of the local wildlife.<br />

Carding Mill Valley has a range of walks for you<br />

to choose from, dependent on ability <strong>and</strong> time.<br />

While the hill itself is steep, the top boasts<br />

beautiful views of the Shropshire Hills <strong>and</strong><br />

Ludlow <strong>and</strong> is definitely worth the trek.<br />

Ideal for families, let the kids get wet <strong>and</strong> enjoy<br />

some pond dipping before you all head to their<br />

local café for a cuppa <strong>and</strong> delicious snack.<br />

Shrewsbury’s shallow hill is surrounded by<br />

gorgeous woodl<strong>and</strong> <strong>and</strong> provides panoramic<br />

views across Shrewsbury to the Welsh hills.<br />

Another great option for families, Haughmond<br />

Hill often has various displays <strong>and</strong> ‘spot the’<br />

sign posts for children to get involved with <strong>and</strong><br />

keep them entertained while also taking in the<br />

fresh air <strong>and</strong> exercise.<br />

Haughmond’s Geo <strong>and</strong> Corbett trails are<br />

designed for mobility scooters <strong>and</strong> child buggies<br />

meaning it’s an option for everyone to take part<br />

in.<br />

The hill is also home to a café situated on their<br />

car park with a range of drinks, snacks <strong>and</strong><br />

seating opportunities for you to rest up after<br />

your walk.<br />

Haughmond Hill<br />

Located in Shrewsbury, Haughmond Hill is<br />

another great option for getting out <strong>and</strong> about<br />

in the warming weather.<br />

Caer Caradoc<br />

Overlooking Church Stretton, Caer Caradoc is<br />

better option for those looking to really blow off<br />

some steam this season.


Caer Caradoc has several walking options to suit<br />

different walking abilities <strong>and</strong> preferences <strong>and</strong> is<br />

considered a ‘moderate-level walk.’<br />

The walk will take you to the 495m summit of<br />

Caer Caradoc <strong>and</strong> it’s ancient hill fort which is<br />

thought to date from either the Iron Age or Late<br />

Bronze Age. A roundtrip of the hill will take<br />

steady walkers around three hours but you can be<br />

sure the views at the top are certainly worth it!<br />

With gorgeous views of the Wreck, Wenlock Edge<br />

<strong>and</strong> the Long Mynd it’s also a perfect photo<br />

opportunity for those looking to capture some of<br />

Shropshire’s best views.<br />

Nescliffe Hill &<br />

Kynaston’s Cave<br />

For history lovers, Nescliffe is a great<br />

walking option that’s also educational.<br />

The cave was once used as a hiding place for<br />

medieval outlaw, Sir Humphrey Kynaston;<br />

after being found guilty of murder <strong>and</strong><br />

declared an outlaw by Henry VI, he moved to<br />

Nescliffe Rock where locals protected him<br />

<strong>and</strong> his horse.<br />

Read all about his true story while also<br />

enjoying the 70 hectares of woodl<strong>and</strong>, stone<br />

quarries <strong>and</strong> a recently excavated hillfort,<br />

The steady walk to the top offers gorgeous<br />

views of the Shropshire countryside <strong>and</strong><br />

Welsh Hills. Also a great option for wildlife<br />

lovers, the variety of habitats at Nescliffe<br />

includes ponds <strong>and</strong> steep cliffs which<br />

provide home to a variety of wildlife<br />

Stiperstones National<br />

Nature Reserve<br />

Offering an atmospheric l<strong>and</strong>scape, the<br />

Stiperstones walk is definitely an option for those<br />

looking to really enjoy what nature has to offer.<br />

Also an option for those looking to admire the<br />

local wildlife, the reserve is home to common<br />

lizard, frog <strong>and</strong> local birdlife for visitors to spot<br />

<strong>and</strong> admire.<br />

The walk features an 8km path that offers views<br />

of the ridge <strong>and</strong> surrounding countryside but<br />

there are also a variety of shorter alternative<br />

routes for those not quite ready to take on the<br />

challenge.<br />

Wenlock Edge<br />

Another good option for a family walk,<br />

Wenlock Edge is a narrow limestone<br />

escarpment running from Craven Arms to<br />

Ironbridge.<br />

With a variety of walks on offer, enjoy the<br />

time to blow off the cobwebs walking<br />

through the natural woodl<strong>and</strong> <strong>and</strong> enjoying<br />

the sights <strong>and</strong> sounds nature has to offer.<br />

With beautiful views of the countryside <strong>and</strong><br />

local wildlife, it’s definitely a walk that<br />

everyone can enjoy.<br />

Also home to a natural play area for the kids,<br />

the area is set within the woodl<strong>and</strong> itself <strong>and</strong><br />

includes a variety of apparatus <strong>and</strong> even a<br />

den-building area to keep the kids<br />

entertained while you enjoy some good old<br />

fashioned fresh air.


Health<br />

BETTER HEARING MADE SIMPLE<br />

Everyone's hearing needs are<br />

unique, so it's important to<br />

consult with an expert<br />

healthcare professional for<br />

personalized advice <strong>and</strong><br />

solutions to suit you <strong>and</strong> your<br />

listening needs.<br />

Our family run, independent<br />

‘Hear in’ clinics at Hagley,<br />

Wombourne <strong>and</strong> Rubery are<br />

dedicated to you <strong>and</strong> your<br />

ears, we simply don’t do<br />

anything else!<br />

Whether its earwax removal,<br />

the latest in hearing aid<br />

technology, tinnitus or ear<br />

protection you can be<br />

assured that our expert<br />

clinical audiologists <strong>and</strong><br />

earcare practitioners are on<br />

h<strong>and</strong> to offer the best advice<br />

on your ear health, your<br />

hearing <strong>and</strong> how we can<br />

best help you.<br />

Is it time to ‘<strong>Spring</strong> into action?’ Why not book<br />

a FREE hearing assessment where we help you<br />

start on that journey to better hearing.<br />

These simple steps may help;<br />

hearing aids, assistive listening devices, or<br />

other technologies designed to enhance<br />

your hearing.<br />

n ‘<strong>Spring</strong>’ into Action - If hearing aids are<br />

recommended, we can take the time to<br />

familiarise you with different types, styles,<br />

<strong>and</strong> features. We consider factors like<br />

comfort, discretion, <strong>and</strong> compatibility with<br />

your lifestyle<br />

n Time to try - If you decide to pursue<br />

hearing aids, you will need a period of time<br />

to adapt. The adjustment process may take<br />

time as your brain acclimates to improved<br />

sound perception. We offer a 60-day full<br />

money back guarantee to help you adjust!<br />

n Regular follow ups - Our aftercare<br />

program is included in the price of your<br />

hearing aids. We guarantee to see you<br />

every 6mths <strong>and</strong> retest your hearing every<br />

18mths to monitor your progress, make<br />

adjust5ments needed to ensure you are<br />

getting the very best out of your hearing<br />

aids.<br />

n Stay educated - We will keep you informed<br />

about your hearing health, advances in<br />

technology, <strong>and</strong> strategies for maintaining<br />

optimal hearing. Knowledge empowers you<br />

to make informed decisions.<br />

Remember the journey to better hearing is<br />

unique to each individual. Stay committed<br />

to the process, be patient with yourself, <strong>and</strong><br />

celebrate the improvements along the way.<br />

Working closely with your audiologist ensures<br />

you receive the support needed for a<br />

successful journey to better hearing. Simple!<br />

Why not book an appointment today, we<br />

even brew a decent cuppa to make the<br />

time spent with us as enjoyable as possible!<br />

n Reflection - Begin by reflecting on your<br />

current hearing experience. Are you<br />

noticing any difficulties underst<strong>and</strong>ing<br />

conversation or distinguishing sounds?<br />

n Book a Hearing Test - Our comprehensive<br />

hearing evaluation will identify the type <strong>and</strong><br />

extent of the issue. We will discuss the results<br />

to you so that you underst<strong>and</strong> the issues <strong>and</strong><br />

offer appropriate options. This might include<br />

HAGLEY/RUBERY CLINIC<br />

01562 884400<br />

WOMBOURNE CLINIC<br />

01902 302266<br />

www.lifestylehearingsolutions.co.uk


Elevate Your Look this <strong>Spring</strong> Summer <strong>2024</strong> with<br />

Eyewear from Award Winning<br />

Samantha Hague Optometry in Tettenhall<br />

In the ever-evolving l<strong>and</strong>scape of<br />

fashion, eyewear plays a pivotal role<br />

in shaping your style. As we step into<br />

the vibrant seasons of spring <strong>and</strong><br />

summer SHO explores the latest<br />

trends that are reshaping the<br />

eyewear scene for <strong>2024</strong>. This year,<br />

the focus is not only on fashion but<br />

also on functionality, blending<br />

innovative design with optimal eye<br />

protection. So, what are the hottest<br />

trends in sunglasses <strong>and</strong> optical<br />

frames that will define your look this<br />

season?<br />

1. Bold Shapes <strong>and</strong> Dazzling Hues:<br />

Prepare to make a bold statement<br />

with eyewear that defies convention.<br />

Oversized frames <strong>and</strong> avant-garde<br />

geometric shapes are taking the lead,<br />

providing an artistic edge to your<br />

style. Embrace vibrant colours to<br />

introduce a playful <strong>and</strong> energetic feel<br />

into your spectacle wardrobe. SHO<br />

has curated collections which amplify<br />

these trends with a portfolio that<br />

combines bold shapes with<br />

captivating colours for an<br />

unparalleled statement.<br />

2. Retro Resurgence: Transport<br />

yourself back in time with eyewear<br />

that pays homage to the iconic styles<br />

of the '60s <strong>and</strong> '70s. Cat-eye frames,<br />

aviators, <strong>and</strong> rounds are making a<br />

triumphant comeback, effortlessly<br />

merging the nostalgia of the past<br />

with the contemporary flair of today.<br />

Styling in retro designs brings a<br />

touch of vintage glamour to your<br />

eyewear.<br />

3. Sustainable Elegance: In a world<br />

increasingly attuned to<br />

sustainability, eyewear designers are<br />

embracing eco-friendly materials to<br />

create stunning frames. SHO offers<br />

unique eyewear collections featuring<br />

frames crafted from recycled plastics,<br />

plant-based acetates, buffalo horn<br />

<strong>and</strong> other sustainable materials.<br />

4. Technological Marvels: Eyewear<br />

isn't just about looks - it's also about<br />

innovation.<br />

Lindberg’s revolutionary approach<br />

boasts a screwless frame design <strong>and</strong><br />

are meticulously crafted from ultralightweight<br />

titanium to ensure<br />

durability <strong>and</strong> comfort. Their<br />

unparalleled fusion of pioneering<br />

technology <strong>and</strong> design finesse<br />

provides wearers with a sophisticated<br />

visual experience that redefines the<br />

boundaries of eyewear innovation.<br />

SHO also offers tech-infused lenses.<br />

With features like light-adaptive<br />

darkening, finishes to help with<br />

prolonged screen time lenses <strong>and</strong> the<br />

latest in night driving technologies<br />

all lenses are not the same. At SHO<br />

we seamlessly integrate these<br />

technological marvels to ensuring<br />

you stay ahead in both style <strong>and</strong><br />

functionality.<br />

7. Elegant Sun Eyewear Transcend<br />

conventional sunglasses by<br />

seamlessly integrating prescription<br />

lenses into our sun collections.<br />

Elevating both fashion <strong>and</strong><br />

functionality, prescription sunglasses<br />

cater for all individuals with varying<br />

vision needs allowing you to embrace<br />

trendsetting designs with confidence.<br />

Combine the latest sunglass trends,<br />

from many sought after <strong>and</strong> eminent<br />

designers such as Tom Ford, Dior,<br />

Cartier <strong>and</strong> Dita, with precise<br />

prescription customization, the<br />

fusion of style <strong>and</strong> vision correction<br />

ensuring you enjoy optimal eye<br />

protection without compromising on<br />

aesthetic appeal. Discover a world<br />

where sunglasses styling is not just a<br />

statement but a personalised<br />

experience at Samantha Hague<br />

Optometry.<br />

Samantha Hague Optometry is your<br />

go-to destination for exclusive,<br />

trendsetting eyewear designs <strong>and</strong> a<br />

personal approach to styling <strong>and</strong><br />

advice. As the only truly independent<br />

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Arthritis: Types <strong>and</strong> Symptoms<br />

What Is Arthritis?<br />

Arthritis is a common condition<br />

that causes pain <strong>and</strong><br />

inflammation of a person’s<br />

joints. Affecting millions of<br />

people within the UK, arthritis<br />

can affect people of any age,<br />

including children.<br />

Types Of Arthritis<br />

Osteoarthritis <strong>and</strong> rheumatoid arthritis are two of the<br />

most common types of the condition.<br />

Osteoarthritis is the most common type within the UK<br />

<strong>and</strong> more often occurs in people in their mid-forties <strong>and</strong><br />

older. It’s more commonly found in those that have a<br />

family history of the condition <strong>and</strong> women.<br />

Osteoarthritis starts by limiting movement in the<br />

cartilage lining of a joint, causing pain <strong>and</strong> stiffness. As<br />

the condition develops the cartilage lining will begin to<br />

thin out which can cause swelling <strong>and</strong> osteophytes.<br />

As the condition progresses <strong>and</strong> the cartilage continues<br />

to thin, it can lead to the bones rubbing against one<br />

another which can alter the shape of a person’s joint.<br />

swelling. This can spread across the joint which may<br />

eventually cause a change in shape <strong>and</strong> lead to a<br />

breakdown of the bone <strong>and</strong> cartilage.<br />

Rheumatoid arthritis can also cause other issues with a<br />

person’s tissues <strong>and</strong> organs.<br />

Some of the other, less common types of arthritis<br />

are:<br />

• Cervical Spondylosis – also known as degenerative<br />

osteoarthritis, cervical spondylitis causes issues in the<br />

joints <strong>and</strong> bones in the neck which may lead to pain <strong>and</strong><br />

stiffness.<br />

• Ankylosing Spondylitis – a long-term inflammatory<br />

condition that affects a person’s bones, muscles <strong>and</strong><br />

ligaments which can lead to joints fusing together.<br />

• Gout – a condition caused by too much uric acid within<br />

the body, this can be left behind in joints (most<br />

commonly the big toe) <strong>and</strong> cause intense pain.<br />

• Psoriatic Arthritis – an inflammatory joint condition<br />

that can affect those with psoriasis<br />

• Reactive Arthritis – caused by an infection in the gut<br />

bowel or throat, this type of arthritis can cause both<br />

pain <strong>and</strong> swelling in the joints.<br />

Symptoms Of Arthritis<br />

As there are so many types of arthritis, the types of<br />

symptoms people suffer from will differ depending on<br />

the type they have.<br />

Some of the symptoms can include:<br />

• Joint pain <strong>and</strong> stiffness<br />

• Restricted movement of the joints<br />

• Inflammation<br />

• Warm, red skin around the affected joints<br />

• Muscle wasting <strong>and</strong> weakness<br />

Treatment<br />

If you have arthritis, you may be able to self-refer<br />

yourself to services that offer help with the condition.<br />

As well as this, you can also speak to your GP about<br />

treatment <strong>and</strong> NHS treatment for the condition.<br />

Versus Arthritis also offer help <strong>and</strong> support for people in<br />

the UK with arthritis as well as also offering help to<br />

their friends <strong>and</strong> families. They are available to speak to<br />

Monday to Friday 9am – 6pm on 0800 5200 520.<br />

The most commonly affected joints are:<br />

• H<strong>and</strong>s<br />

• Knees<br />

• Hips<br />

• Spine<br />

Rheumatoid arthritis is the less common type of the two<br />

<strong>and</strong> often occurs when a person is between 30 – 50 years<br />

old. Alike osteoarthritis, women are more likely to be<br />

affected by the condition than men.<br />

In rheumatoid arthritis, a person’s immune system will<br />

target affected joints which causes both pain <strong>and</strong><br />

By Katie Wilson


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THE FUTURE OF<br />

FAT LOSS AND<br />

BODY SCULPTING<br />

New EMERALD Laser<br />

experience now available in<br />

Shropshire at The Medispa<br />

in Priorslee, Telford.<br />

15 minutes <strong>and</strong> then your back for 15 minutes.<br />

It's that easy!<br />

Use your own fat to get your health back by preserving<br />

the endocrine function of your cell unlike most other<br />

technologies in the market. Look great on outside, but<br />

also feel great on the inside as well.<br />

Visualisation of the fat cells shrinking<br />

WHAT IS THE EMERALD LASER EXPERIENCE ?<br />

The EMERALD LASER is a non-invasive <strong>and</strong> non thermal<br />

fat loss laser that works in tune with your body. It is the<br />

only technology in the world that has been given US FDA<br />

market clearance for overall body circumference<br />

reduction in patients +30 BMI.<br />

The laser works as a natural alternative for fat loss by<br />

using non-thermal low-level lasers to create a temporary<br />

pore in the fat cells, allowing the fatty liquids to seep out<br />

of the cell <strong>and</strong> be naturally flushed out through your<br />

lymphatic system.<br />

We carry out a full medical assessment before starting<br />

your treatment, so if you are not a suitable c<strong>and</strong>idate, we<br />

will find out before your programme begins.<br />

WHAT AREAS CAN BE TREATED<br />

The Emerald Laser can be used to treat several<br />

different body areas. Please examine the image below for<br />

the possible treatment options:<br />

BEFORE<br />

BEFORE<br />

AFTER<br />

AFTER<br />

BEFORE<br />

AFTER<br />

ABOUT THE TREATMENT<br />

The treatment with Emerald is quick <strong>and</strong> you can<br />

immediately return to normal daily activities after the<br />

treatment.<br />

You simply lie under the laser on your front for<br />

"Book now for a free consultation"<br />

For more information contact:<br />

The Medispa<br />

Priorslee, Telford TF2 9GZ<br />

T: 01952 984888<br />

E: info@themedispa.co.uk<br />

W: www.themedispa.co.uk


Elevating Beauty:<br />

The Marvels of Secret<br />

Pro by Cutera<br />

In the ever-evolving world of<br />

skincare, a revolutionary<br />

technology has emerged,<br />

promising a new era of radiant<br />

skin – the Secret Pro by Cutera.<br />

This groundbreaking treatment<br />

is a beacon of hope for those<br />

seeking transformative results<br />

<strong>and</strong> a rejuvenated complexion.<br />

Minimal downtime is a st<strong>and</strong>out feature of Secret Pro.<br />

Many individuals experience only mild redness <strong>and</strong><br />

swelling, with these effects dissipating within a few<br />

hours. This quick recovery makes it an ideal choice for<br />

those with busy lifestyles.<br />

A testament to its innovation, Secret Pro is safe for all<br />

skin types <strong>and</strong> tones. It sidesteps concerns about<br />

hyperpigmentation often associated with certain<br />

treatments, making it an inclusive option for diverse<br />

individuals.<br />

Treatment by: A.Renta MD<br />

The gradual yet significant results are where Secret Pro<br />

truly shines. Collagen production continues to improve<br />

over time, leading to progressive improvements in skin<br />

quality. This natural process ensures outcomes that are<br />

harmonious with your unique beauty.<br />

Treatment by: Larry Blevins PA<br />

At its core, Secret Pro is a fusion of microneedling,<br />

radiofrequency (RF) technologies <strong>and</strong> CO2 laser,<br />

designed to revitalize skin from within. Microneedling<br />

creates tiny channels, jumpstarting the skin's healing<br />

process, while the RF energy stimulates collagen<br />

production, leading to smoother texture <strong>and</strong> enhanced<br />

elasticity. Its CO2 laser can completely resurface the<br />

skin's outer layer.<br />

What sets Secret Pro apart is its versatility. Whether<br />

you're battling wrinkles, scars, or uneven texture, this<br />

treatment can be personalized to address a range of<br />

concerns. The adjustable settings allow for precision,<br />

ensuring targeted treatment for individual skin needs.<br />

Treatment by: Larry Blevins PA<br />

In conclusion, Secret Pro by Cutera isn't just a skincare<br />

solution; it's a transformative journey towards revitalized<br />

skin. With its combination of cutting-edge technologies,<br />

tailored approach, swift recovery, <strong>and</strong> universal appeal,<br />

Secret Pro empowers individuals to unlock their skin's<br />

potential for radiance. It's not just a secret anymore – the<br />

path to vibrant, youthful skin is illuminated by the<br />

benefits of Secret Pro.<br />

Treatment by: Larry Blevins PA<br />

"Book now for a free consultation"<br />

For more information contact:<br />

The Medispa<br />

Priorslee, Telford TF2 9GZ<br />

T: 01952 984888<br />

E: info@themedispa.co.uk<br />

W: www.themedispa.co.uk


Health & Wellness Trends <strong>2024</strong><br />

Now well into <strong>2024</strong>, many<br />

people are looking for the most<br />

talked-about <strong>and</strong> effective<br />

health trends for this year.<br />

With a stronger focus on mental<br />

health as well as physical health<br />

in recent years, many of us are<br />

now looking for ways to boost<br />

our wellbeing as well as staying<br />

healthy.<br />

Take a look at some of the most<br />

popular wellness trends for this<br />

year <strong>and</strong> think about the kind of<br />

changes you could make to be<br />

healthier this year.<br />

reconnect with nature. Long walks <strong>and</strong> hikes became<br />

more popular than they had been in years <strong>and</strong> for many<br />

of us, we took the opportunity to reflect on how<br />

enjoyable it can be <strong>and</strong> how little we were doing it<br />

before.<br />

<strong>2024</strong> is set to be a year for ‘digital detoxes’ <strong>and</strong> taking<br />

breaks from the likes of social media to get back<br />

outdoors.<br />

Also, an enjoyable form of exercise that doesn’t involve<br />

heavy lifting <strong>and</strong> huge amounts of effort, hiking is a<br />

great way to keep fit with a beautiful view!<br />

More Plant-Based Diets<br />

Recent years also saw the boom of veganism <strong>and</strong><br />

vegetarian with social media becoming full of plantbased<br />

meal ideas.<br />

The more recent David Attenborough documentary also<br />

had many of us reflecting on the amount of meat we do<br />

eat <strong>and</strong> considering the lasting effects our diets are<br />

having on the natural environment.<br />

With meat <strong>and</strong> fish now a lot more expensive, it’s a great<br />

time for people to start making the shift to more veggiebased<br />

meals. From vegan burgers <strong>and</strong> meat alternatives<br />

to pure vegetable-based dinner options, for many<br />

people, their diets are expected to go through big<br />

changes this year.<br />

Wellness Travel<br />

Another consequence of the lockdown for many of us<br />

was the disappointment of saying goodbye to getaways.<br />

Instead of our usual holidays <strong>and</strong> weekend trips away,<br />

we were instead faced with the sadder option of<br />

remaining at home.<br />

Now back to normality <strong>and</strong> with more of us<br />

contemplating our mental-health, wellness-based travel<br />

is set to be a big part of <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

Cut Back On The Caffeine<br />

Only a few years ago it seemed everyone was getting<br />

through their day with a little help from caffeine. Iced<br />

coffees <strong>and</strong> flavoured coffees became more <strong>and</strong> more<br />

popular <strong>and</strong> the trend of rushing to a coffee house<br />

seemed to be everywhere.<br />

From staycations within the UK to relaxing holidays<br />

abroad, the once popular ‘drinking holidays’ are set to<br />

take a drop <strong>and</strong> be replaced by holidays designed for<br />

rejuvenating <strong>and</strong> resting up before returning to<br />

normality.<br />

But not for <strong>2024</strong>. This year there may well be a push to<br />

cut back on caffeine intake with the options for decaf<br />

becoming more varied.<br />

With a sharper focus on people’s sleep patterns <strong>and</strong> the<br />

amount of sleep we’re all getting every night, more <strong>and</strong><br />

more people are choosing to switch to decaf options or<br />

fruit teas over the drinks that will keep them awake at<br />

night.<br />

Re-connect With Nature<br />

During lockdown, more <strong>and</strong> more of us began to<br />

By Katie Wilson


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01902 422096 | info@flint<strong>and</strong>partners.co.uk<br />

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01902 719850 | wednesfield@flint<strong>and</strong>partners.co.uk<br />

15 The Square, Codsall, <strong>Wolverhampton</strong>, WV8 1PT<br />

01902 719855 | codsall@flint<strong>and</strong>partners.co.uk<br />

Book your Eye<br />

Exam here<br />

www.flint<strong>and</strong>partners.co.uk


Your Spiritual Tool Kit – Helpful<br />

techniques for living in a crazy world…<br />

Our modern world feels very intense <strong>and</strong> I am seeing<br />

an increasing number of people who are struggling<br />

with anxiety <strong>and</strong> overwhelm!<br />

The pace of life seems of quickened, everything feels<br />

like it has ramped up <strong>and</strong> often people describe<br />

feeling like the treadmill is getting faster <strong>and</strong> faster<br />

<strong>and</strong> they simply cannot keep up.<br />

The mental health systems struggle to offer therapy<br />

<strong>and</strong> help as they too are overwhelmed <strong>and</strong> so more<br />

<strong>and</strong> more people are turning to holistic methods to<br />

deal these symptoms.<br />

Breath work, mediation, visualisation, hypnosis <strong>and</strong><br />

energy healing are all becoming increasingly more<br />

popular… <strong>and</strong> with good reason! There is tangible,<br />

scientific evidence that these processes deliver<br />

results… some times better than the medications<br />

prescribed to deal with the issues.<br />

Regulating our nervous system is integral to reducing<br />

these symptoms as the overwhelm <strong>and</strong> anxiety are<br />

the result of a society that encourages burnout <strong>and</strong><br />

that constantly haves us striving for the next best<br />

thing.<br />

Here are some very simple techniques <strong>and</strong> exercises<br />

that can make a big difference, give them a go… take<br />

the time to try out which ones work for you… all of<br />

these are tools I use personally <strong>and</strong> also techniques<br />

that I teach my clients….<br />

These two breathing technique are great to reduce<br />

anxiety <strong>and</strong> panic attacks, they help to calm <strong>and</strong><br />

soothe the nervous system… these powerful<br />

exercises can reset us back to safety if we have gone<br />

into fight or flight…<br />

Box Breathing<br />

Inhale for the count of 4<br />

Hold for the count of 4<br />

Exhale for the count of 4<br />

Hold for the count of 4.<br />

Repeat 10 times.<br />

4-7-8 Breathing<br />

Inhale for the count of 4<br />

Hold for the count of 7<br />

Slow exhale for the count of 8<br />

Repeat 10 times.<br />

This is a technique to protect your energy, it is helpful<br />

if you feel a lot or are sensitive. It also helps if large<br />

groups of people or crowds drain you… it is really<br />

helpful to do this every morning before you leave the<br />

house or mix with other people…<br />

What's Yours is Yours - Empath Physical<br />

Protection technique<br />

St<strong>and</strong> on earth (preferably bare feet)<br />

Rub h<strong>and</strong>s vigorously together, building energy <strong>and</strong><br />

heat in your h<strong>and</strong>s. (for about 30 seconds)<br />

Hold arms above your head, palms flat <strong>and</strong> facing the<br />

sky <strong>and</strong> say out loud as loud as possible<br />

"WHATS YOURS IS YOURS, WHATS MINE IS<br />

MINE'<br />

Hold arms out, h<strong>and</strong>s flat <strong>and</strong> facing forwards, palms<br />

up (in a stop position) <strong>and</strong> say loudly<br />

WHATS YOURS IS YOURS, WHATS MINE IS MINE<br />

Now put h<strong>and</strong>s to the sides <strong>and</strong> repeat.<br />

Now face palms to behind you <strong>and</strong> repeat.<br />

Now palms to the earth <strong>and</strong> repeat.<br />

This technique helps to boost your energy levels <strong>and</strong><br />

is great if you are feeling tired, if you have<br />

experienced any shock or trauma or if you just feel<br />

out of sorts…<br />

Creating a circuit of energy to boost your<br />

energy levels<br />

1. Find a straight-backed<br />

chair or a stool that allows you to sit with your<br />

feet flat on the ground.<br />

Remove your shoes, but if it is cold keep your<br />

socks on


2 Close your eyes <strong>and</strong><br />

breathe deeply three times. Visualize a rope<br />

descending from the tail of your spine, through the<br />

floor, into the earth, through layers of rock, until you<br />

feel it reaches the centre of the earth. Anchor your rope<br />

there.<br />

3 Now imagine that there are two holes in the<br />

soles of your feet <strong>and</strong> a heavy, brownish-red sludge is<br />

coming up through these holes <strong>and</strong> circulating<br />

throughout your lower body as far up as your waist. Let<br />

this energy circulate until your body feels heavier.<br />

4 Next visualize a distant point in the heavens from<br />

which a beam of white light is coming down to connect<br />

with a point on the crown of your head. Feel this light<br />

flow through this point in your head <strong>and</strong> through the<br />

upper part of your body, cleansing it <strong>and</strong> making it feel<br />

lighter.<br />

5 Now feel the two different energies circulating at the<br />

same time. Finish by touching the floor with your h<strong>and</strong>s<br />

<strong>and</strong> allowing any excess energy to return to the earth.<br />

This is a grounding exercise <strong>and</strong> can be done barefoot<br />

on the grass in your garden or park. When we connect<br />

our bare feet to the earth an electromagnetic charge<br />

occurs within our physical body, a little like plugging<br />

your phone into a charger…<br />

In yoga philosophy, the true Self is always there. It's a<br />

steady center that we all have in us. In ancient Indian<br />

texts called The Upanishads it's called the Atman, <strong>and</strong><br />

it's basically Self with a capital S. The true Self is the<br />

part of each of us that's eternally connected with<br />

everything else: the Universe, the Divine, the universal<br />

consciousness, or however you like to describe<br />

'everythingness.' We all come from the same stuff <strong>and</strong><br />

go back to the same stuff.<br />

Grounding exercise<br />

St<strong>and</strong> barefoot on the grass if you can…<br />

Take some deep breaths... in <strong>and</strong> out...<br />

Now Breathe into your heart Imagine breathing in <strong>and</strong><br />

out of your heart centre<br />

Now send that energy down through your body into<br />

your feet <strong>and</strong> feel/Imagine your bare feet on sacred<br />

earth..<br />

Now send that energy out through the soles of your<br />

feet into the earth Like large roots of light...spreading<br />

<strong>and</strong> burrowing deeper into the earth<br />

Like the roots of a big old oak tree<br />

Let any negative or stagnant energy flow down through<br />

those roots into the earth<br />

Feel it all drain away...letting go<br />

Now imagine the energy of the earth, the deep<br />

nurturing energy, rising up<br />

It travels up those roots <strong>and</strong> into the soles (souls) of<br />

your feet..<br />

And up into your body, into your cells... filling them with<br />

life force energy<br />

All the way up through your body to the crown of you<br />

head.<br />

Imagine yourself rooted like an oak tree. Grounded into<br />

Mother Earth<br />

The more you practice the better your mind<br />

<strong>and</strong> body will feel… x<br />

Jessi Carrera-Maybury<br />

T: 07944 501998<br />

Charmed Healing<br />

Therapies<br />

Reiki Master Teacher,<br />

Theta healing Practitioner<br />

<strong>and</strong> Spiritual Coach<br />

If you’d like to sit in the safety of a circle<br />

why not join us for The Coven - our monthly<br />

women’s circle for witches <strong>and</strong> wild women.<br />

Held at the Wild Women’s Academy,<br />

High Street, Newport.


DONNINGTON<br />

PHARMACY<br />

Donnington Pharmacy is the award-winning<br />

pharmacy next to Donnington Medical<br />

Practice. We aim to provide the best<br />

pharmacy service we can, despite the post<br />

COVID pressures that we all face.<br />

We try to put our patients first; our<br />

extended opening hours enable you to<br />

collect your prescription at a convenient<br />

time. Services we provide include a FREE<br />

prescription delivery service covering<br />

Telford <strong>and</strong> Wrekin <strong>and</strong> we can text you<br />

when your prescription is ready for<br />

collection, call in for details.<br />

We provide NHS treatments for selected<br />

infections, <strong>and</strong> from 1st of February, <strong>2024</strong>,<br />

in addition to infected insect bites, impetigo<br />

<strong>and</strong> urine infections (females 16-64) we will<br />

be able to treat Ear (under 18’s only), Nose<br />

<strong>and</strong> Throat infections in adults <strong>and</strong> children<br />

on the NHS <strong>and</strong> Shingles (adult only).<br />

Scan the QR code or see our NHS<br />

website for details of these <strong>and</strong> other<br />

services we provide.<br />

Walkin flu & Covid<br />

jabsnow available<br />

subject to availability<br />

Find us: Donnington Pharmacy n Wrekin Drive n Donnington n Telford n TF2 8EA<br />

(Next to the ambulance station)<br />

Contact us: 01952 676556 I Email: donnington.pharmacy@nhs.net<br />

www.donningtonpharmacy.co.uk


Roden Hall: Supporting an Enriching Lifestyle<br />

Nestled in the picturesque<br />

Shropshire countryside, Roden Hall<br />

Care is dedicated to offering its<br />

residents a lifestyle that blends<br />

independence, luxury, <strong>and</strong><br />

enriching experiences. At the heart<br />

of this commitment are engaging<br />

activities <strong>and</strong> outings designed to<br />

inspire <strong>and</strong> delight.<br />

The British Ironwork Centre, where<br />

intricate sculptures mesmerise,<br />

every excursion is a chance to<br />

explore <strong>and</strong> appreciate the world<br />

around them.<br />

With a dedicated Lifestyle<br />

Coordinator at the helm, Roden Hall<br />

ensures that activities cater to all<br />

tastes <strong>and</strong> abilities. From library<br />

areas to craft rooms <strong>and</strong> even a<br />

cinema room, residents have<br />

access to a wealth of facilities that<br />

support their busy <strong>and</strong> enriching<br />

lifestyles.<br />

One of the highlights of life at<br />

Roden Hall is the warm <strong>and</strong> inviting<br />

atmosphere of Berrington's Café,<br />

where residents gather for Knit <strong>and</strong><br />

Natter sessions. Whether seasoned<br />

knitters or complete beginners, all<br />

are welcome to join in the<br />

camaraderie, sharing stories <strong>and</strong><br />

skills over a cup of tea. Additionally,<br />

fortnightly breakfast club offers a<br />

delectable array of pastries <strong>and</strong><br />

fresh fruit, providing a delicious start<br />

to the day that residents can enjoy<br />

in the company of friends.<br />

Operated by Rotherwood<br />

Healthcare, a trusted provider,<br />

award-winning Roden Hall offers<br />

Residential <strong>and</strong> Nursing Care to the<br />

older generation. To find out more,<br />

visit www.rodenhall.care or call<br />

01952 743159.<br />

Beyond the walls of Roden Hall,<br />

residents embark on captivating<br />

trips into the community. From<br />

leisurely visits to the local garden<br />

centre, where vibrant colours <strong>and</strong><br />

slices of cake await, to more<br />

adventurous outings to places like<br />

Roden Hall also welcomes an array<br />

of visitors, adding excitement <strong>and</strong><br />

variety. From children at the nursery<br />

joining for story time <strong>and</strong> games to<br />

talented entertainers bringing music<br />

<strong>and</strong> laughter, there truly is<br />

something for everyone.<br />

Enriching the lives of<br />

the older generation<br />

Need care for<br />

yourself<br />

or a loved one?<br />

We’d love for you to feel at home in our home:<br />

Arrange a visit & meet our wonderful team:<br />

T: 01952 743 159 A: Roden, Telford, TF6 6BH<br />

Call: 01952 743 159 Visit: Roden, Telford, TF6 6BH<br />

ROTHERWOOD-HEALTHCARE.CO.UK<br />

WWW.RODENHALL.CARE


School of Opportunity: A Student Perspective<br />

Reflecting on their time at<br />

<strong>Wolverhampton</strong> Grammar School,<br />

Isabelle Mason, Head Girl, <strong>and</strong><br />

George Brown, Head Boy, are truly<br />

thankful for the amazing<br />

experiences they have enjoyed at<br />

WGS. “We know that prospective<br />

students will love it here!” they both<br />

enthuse.<br />

Izzy joined the Junior School at age 7<br />

<strong>and</strong> had no idea that she would be a<br />

future Head Prefect. The continual<br />

support she received encouraged her<br />

to push herself <strong>and</strong> make the most of<br />

the unique opportunities available. For<br />

Izzy, these revolved around music <strong>and</strong><br />

sport. Izzy excels at Netball <strong>and</strong> has<br />

captained the 1st team to several<br />

victories. Sport for Izzy has extended<br />

far beyond the school grounds.<br />

Highlights include three ski-trips, as<br />

well as a memorable sports tour to<br />

<strong>South</strong> Africa. In Year 10, Izzy<br />

participated in the life-changing annual<br />

Coast 2 Coast challenge: a 24-hour<br />

non-stop relay which is run by WGS<br />

students over a 170-mile cross country<br />

course to raise funds for charity.<br />

Izzy’s second love is music <strong>and</strong> she<br />

has performed in the many music<br />

concerts at school. These are a<br />

chance to witness individual talent as<br />

well the teamwork of ensembles.<br />

Personally Izzy enjoys singing in the<br />

Soul Choir <strong>and</strong> playing the flute in<br />

Flute Choir. After achieving her grade<br />

7, she performed in Jersey on a<br />

School Music Tour.<br />

Izzy reflects, “I can look back <strong>and</strong> say<br />

that my time at WGS has been one of<br />

growth, joy <strong>and</strong> fulfilment. My teachers<br />

have always been eager to help me<br />

academically <strong>and</strong> pastorally, guiding<br />

me through challenging years of my<br />

life. I have embraced the opportunities<br />

given to me <strong>and</strong> made life-long friends<br />

along the way.”<br />

George remembers his first Open Day<br />

visit <strong>and</strong> says at the time he could only<br />

dream of joining the amazing WGS<br />

community <strong>and</strong> st<strong>and</strong>ing on the stage<br />

addressing future visitors as Head<br />

Boy. He remembers instantly falling in<br />

love with all the facilities <strong>and</strong> the 100+<br />

extra-curricular clubs. “Mum often tells<br />

me how she knew instantly the school<br />

would suit me perfectly <strong>and</strong> there<br />

would be plenty of activities to throw<br />

myself into,” says George.<br />

George has represented WGS in<br />

football <strong>and</strong> was on the winning City<br />

Cup team in Year 11. Acting has been<br />

a particular love <strong>and</strong> the School’s<br />

Hutton Theatre has been home to<br />

George’s acting skills in several<br />

productions. From sword-fighting as<br />

Burbage in Shakespeare in Love <strong>and</strong><br />

sporting a pink dress <strong>and</strong> wig in A<br />

Midsummer Night’s Dream, George<br />

has recently performed his final part as<br />

Orsino in this year’s Senior Production<br />

of Twelfth Night.<br />

Izzy is studying Biology, Chemistry<br />

<strong>and</strong> Maths whilst George is studying<br />

Biology, Maths <strong>and</strong> Further Maths A<br />

Levels. They are hoping to study<br />

Dentistry <strong>and</strong> Mathematics<br />

(respectively) at university. We wish<br />

them well as they prepare for the<br />

public examinations next term.


An Independent Day School for<br />

Boys <strong>and</strong> Girls ages 4 – 18 years<br />

Year 5 Discovery Day<br />

Saturday 27th April <strong>2024</strong><br />

Get a taste of life in our Senior School<br />

ahead of applying<br />

• Explore our fantastic facilities<br />

• Sample senior lessons<br />

Register via wgs.org.uk/discovery-day-registration<br />

Students must be currently in Year 5 <strong>and</strong> looking at entry to Year 7 in September 2025.<br />

<strong>Wolverhampton</strong> Grammar School<br />

Compton Road, <strong>Wolverhampton</strong>, WV3 9RB<br />

Registered charity (Engl<strong>and</strong> <strong>and</strong> Wales no. 1125268)<br />

01902 422939<br />

admissions@wgs-sch.net


Beauty<br />

Show Off Your <strong>Spring</strong><br />

Glow: Top Tips for Your<br />

Skin This Season<br />

As we say goodbye to the colder<br />

months, it's time to leave<br />

behind the heavy skincare<br />

routines <strong>and</strong> welcome the<br />

rejuvenating spirit of the spring.<br />

The changing seasons, weather<br />

<strong>and</strong> temperature can all have an<br />

effect your skin, making it<br />

important to adapt your<br />

skincare routine accordingly.<br />

Have a look through our 6 top<br />

tips when it comes to improving<br />

the feel <strong>and</strong> appearance of your<br />

skin this spring.<br />

ceramides to keep your skin well-hydrated <strong>and</strong> glowing<br />

throughout the day.<br />

Be Gentle When It Comes To Cleansing<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> is the perfect time to reassess your current<br />

cleansing routine.<br />

If you’re currently using a harsher cleanser, consider<br />

opting for a gentler option to remove any excess oils <strong>and</strong><br />

impurities without removing your skin's natural<br />

moisture.<br />

Using a cleansing brush or a soft exfoliating scrub once<br />

or twice a week can help to achieve a brighter<br />

complexion without removing that gorgeous natural<br />

glow.<br />

Go Lighter On The Make Up<br />

The spring season is all about embracing a fresher, more<br />

natural glow.<br />

Instead of applying the heavier foundations <strong>and</strong><br />

concealers, think about instead using lighter products<br />

such as tinted moisturisers or a lightweight concealer to<br />

let your skin breathe.<br />

Minimal make up not only looks great in the spring but<br />

also reduces the risk of clogged pores <strong>and</strong> breakouts.<br />

Bring Antioxidants Into Your Skincare<br />

Routine<br />

In order to combat environmental stressors, spring is<br />

the perfect time to introduce antioxidant-rich products<br />

into your skincare routine.<br />

Vitamins C <strong>and</strong> E are powerful antioxidants that can<br />

help protect your skin from damage <strong>and</strong> promote<br />

collagen production.<br />

Antioxidants also play an important role in preventing<br />

some certain skin conditions. Studies in 2021 showed<br />

that Vitamin E levels were lower in patients that were<br />

suffering from conditions such as acne, vitiligo <strong>and</strong><br />

atopic dermatitis.<br />

Exfoliate<br />

Say goodbye to dull winter skin by incorporating regular<br />

exfoliation into your routine.<br />

Alike cleaner, also choose a gentle exfoliant that suits<br />

your skin type to remove any dead skin cells <strong>and</strong> create a<br />

brighter complexion.<br />

This not only enhances the effectiveness of your skincare<br />

products but also helps maintain a smooth <strong>and</strong> glowing<br />

skin texture for this spring.<br />

Consider The Effect Of Your Diet<br />

Your diet can have a significant impact on the condition<br />

of your skin.<br />

Make sure you’re eating a balanced diet with plenty of<br />

fresh fruits <strong>and</strong> vegetables as well as foods high in<br />

vitamins <strong>and</strong> minerals in order to create healthierfeeling<br />

<strong>and</strong> looking skin.<br />

Hydrate<br />

As the temperature rises, your skin tends to lose more<br />

moisture which can make it feel dry <strong>and</strong> even cause<br />

flaking or dry patches.<br />

Consider switching to a lightweight, hydrating<br />

moisturiser that can lock in moisture without feeling<br />

heavy on your skin.<br />

Look for ingredients like hyaluronic acid, glycerin, <strong>and</strong><br />

De-Stress<br />

Many of us fail to recognise the impact factors such as<br />

stress <strong>and</strong> frustration can have on our skin.<br />

Stress is a big factor in causing outbreaks <strong>and</strong><br />

imperfections on your skin, regardless of what products<br />

you’re using to combat them.<br />

Make sure you’re taking the time to relax <strong>and</strong> de-stress<br />

this spring. Not only will it help you to feel better, you<br />

may well also notice the positive impact it has on your<br />

skin.<br />

By Katie Wilson


Celebrations at <strong>Wolverhampton</strong> Girls’ High School<br />

Yes, we are celebrating! Our school recently underwent a comprehensive Ofsted inspection<br />

<strong>and</strong> we are incredibly proud <strong>and</strong> delighted to have been rated as Outst<strong>and</strong>ing in all areas.<br />

develop <strong>and</strong> stretch pupils’ talents <strong>and</strong> interests”. The school<br />

has ensured there is something for everyone.<br />

Join our success story <strong>and</strong> let us help your<br />

daughter unleash her potential.<br />

Headteacher Trudi Young with WGHS students<br />

Our academic success is evident. In 2022-23, an<br />

impressive 77% of GCSE grades were in the 7-9 range<br />

with a progress 8 score of 0.8, well above average.<br />

The recent Ofsted report highlights that pupils<br />

receive an outst<strong>and</strong>ing quality of education at our<br />

school, with meticulous curriculum planning that<br />

exceeds national expectations.<br />

Alongside academic excellence, here at WGHS we also<br />

encourage our girls to continuously strive for their personal<br />

best by making the most of every opportunity available. Our<br />

motto, ‘Ludus supra praemium,’ which translates to ‘The<br />

Game before the Prize’, emphasises the value of<br />

wholeheartedly being part of the school community. With<br />

multiple House events each year <strong>and</strong> a huge extra-curricular<br />

calendar that provides over 80 clubs, Ofsted commented<br />

“Pupils benefit from an exceptional enrichment offer. The<br />

school provides numerous, varied opportunities to nurture,<br />

The WGHS entrance exam is scheduled for September <strong>2024</strong>,<br />

with registrations closing at the end of June. To provide<br />

valuable insights <strong>and</strong> support for prospective students, we<br />

will be conducting free familiarisation sessions in May <strong>and</strong><br />

June at various primary schools across the city.<br />

These sessions offer a unique opportunity to underst<strong>and</strong> the<br />

format of the entrance test, with practical examples provided.<br />

By participating, you <strong>and</strong> your daughter can gain familiarity<br />

with the test, enabling peak performance on exam day.<br />

Families attending will also receive complimentary access to<br />

online familiarisation materials, featuring additional example<br />

questions.<br />

Register your details at the webpage below <strong>and</strong><br />

we will keep you posted with dates <strong>and</strong> venues for<br />

open days (scheduled week beginning 22nd<br />

April), familiarisation sessions <strong>and</strong> the exam<br />

date. We extend a warm invitation to attend our<br />

events, as the entrance exam is open to anyone<br />

aspiring to join the WGHS family!<br />

www.wghs.org.uk/KeepMePosted<br />

For girls currently in Years 4 & 5 entering Year 7 in September 2025 or 2026<br />

WGHS is one of the TOP state schools in the country. A selective school that provides FREE<br />

education to girls aged 11-18. Rated OUTSTANDING by Ofsted in November 2023.<br />

For more on why you should consider WGHS <strong>and</strong> to request information<br />

about open days <strong>and</strong> the entrance exam: www.wghs.org.uk/KeepMePosted<br />

Tettenhall Road, <strong>Wolverhampton</strong> WV6 0BY<br />

Follow us on Social media


Managing aches <strong>and</strong> pains from winter<br />

Winter can be a beautiful<br />

season with its snow-covered<br />

l<strong>and</strong>scapes <strong>and</strong> cozy nights by<br />

the fire. However, for many<br />

people, it also comes with aches<br />

<strong>and</strong> pains that can make day-today<br />

activities challenging.<br />

Although Shropshire has seen a<br />

damper winter rather than the<br />

frosts of the north, the cold<br />

weather, coupled with reduced<br />

physical activity <strong>and</strong> increased<br />

sedentary behavior, can wreak<br />

havoc on our bodies.<br />

Thankfully, physiotherapy<br />

offers relief <strong>and</strong> can help us get<br />

over winter aches <strong>and</strong> pains.<br />

During winter, many individuals experience an increase<br />

in joint <strong>and</strong> muscle pain. The cold weather can cause our<br />

muscles to contract <strong>and</strong> tighten, leading to stiffness <strong>and</strong><br />

discomfort. Furthermore, the lack of physical activity in<br />

winter can exacerbate these issues, as our muscles are<br />

not as flexible or conditioned as they are in more active<br />

months.<br />

stretching, range-of-motion exercises, <strong>and</strong> resistance<br />

training to target your problem areas. These exercises<br />

can help increase joint mobility, promote blood<br />

circulation, <strong>and</strong> reduce muscle tension. Another popular<br />

treatment modality is manual therapy. This h<strong>and</strong>s-on<br />

approach involves the manipulation of soft tissues <strong>and</strong><br />

joints to relieve pain <strong>and</strong> restore movement. Your<br />

physiotherapist may use techniques such as joint<br />

mobilization, massage, or myofascial release to improve<br />

your condition.<br />

Manual therapy not only provides immediate pain relief<br />

but also enables your body to heal more effectively. In<br />

addition to exercises <strong>and</strong> manual therapy, your<br />

physiotherapist may suggest other interventions to<br />

manage your winter aches <strong>and</strong> pains While<br />

physiotherapy can effectively address winter aches <strong>and</strong><br />

pains, it is essential to take a holistic approach to your<br />

well-being during this season. Regular physical activity,<br />

even in the comfort of your home, can go a long way in<br />

preventing <strong>and</strong> managing these symptoms. Stay active<br />

by incorporating gentle exercises into your daily routine,<br />

such as walking or low-impact aerobics. Additionally,<br />

maintaining a healthy diet <strong>and</strong> staying hydrated can<br />

help prevent inflammation <strong>and</strong> promote overall health.<br />

Getting to the root cause of your aches <strong>and</strong> pain is often<br />

the best way to prevent them next winter. Our specialist<br />

team offer a full body screening <strong>and</strong> analysis, this<br />

includes looking at walking <strong>and</strong> postures. One of the<br />

most advanced techniques in correcting long-term<br />

problems is using custom made 3D printed insoles to<br />

help realign joints <strong>and</strong> muscles to reduce stress <strong>and</strong> load<br />

on the body. A physiotherapist will conduct a thorough<br />

assessment <strong>and</strong> develop a treatment plan tailored to<br />

your specific needs. They will guide you through the<br />

exercises <strong>and</strong> techniques, ensuring proper form <strong>and</strong><br />

safety.<br />

So, don't let winter aches <strong>and</strong> pains dampen your spirits.<br />

Seeking physiotherapy can provide you with the relief<br />

you need to enjoy the season to its fullest. Embrace the<br />

benefits of therapeutic exercises, manual therapy, <strong>and</strong><br />

other interventions to get over these winter blues. By<br />

taking care of your body <strong>and</strong> seeking professional<br />

guidance, you can bid farewell to aches <strong>and</strong> pains <strong>and</strong><br />

embrace the joys of the winter season.<br />

To get booked in or discuss your needs with us<br />

you can book online for a consultation<br />

www.shropshirephysiotherapy.co.uk or call us<br />

01952 825042<br />

Physiotherapy is a branch of healthcare that aims to<br />

restore, maintain, <strong>and</strong> maximise physical strength <strong>and</strong><br />

function. It offers a range of techniques <strong>and</strong> treatments<br />

that can alleviate the symptoms of winter aches <strong>and</strong><br />

pains. A physiotherapist can assess the root cause of<br />

your discomfort <strong>and</strong> develop a personalized treatment<br />

plan to address your specific needs.<br />

Two of the most commonly used techniques in<br />

physiotherapy is h<strong>and</strong>s on therapy with therapeutic<br />

exercises. These exercises are designed to improve<br />

flexibility, strengthen muscles, <strong>and</strong> reduce pain. Your<br />

physiotherapist may recommend a combination of


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Beauty<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> Your Hair Back To<br />

Life: Top <strong>Spring</strong> Hair Tips<br />

for <strong>2024</strong><br />

Now past the winter woes <strong>and</strong><br />

with the temperature rising, it's<br />

time to refresh your look <strong>and</strong><br />

embrace the vibrant spirit of<br />

spring.<br />

Is your hair in need of a<br />

seasonal refresh? Have a read of<br />

our exciting <strong>and</strong> on-trend hair<br />

tips for this spring.<br />

Pastel Shades<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> is synonymous with pastel colours, <strong>and</strong> these<br />

shades are perfect when it comes to the hair colour<br />

scene.<br />

Soft pinks, lavender, mint green, <strong>and</strong> baby blue are all<br />

beautiful options to explore in your locks. Consider<br />

incorporating pastel highlights or opting for an all-over<br />

pastel shade to truly bring the season into your hair.<br />

not let your hair join in on the party?<br />

Try incorporating floral hair accessories such as pins,<br />

clips, or headb<strong>and</strong>s to your normal hairstyle. These<br />

accessories not only add a touch of nature to your look<br />

but also elevate your hairstyle instantly.<br />

Whether you choose bold, statement pieces or more<br />

subtle, delicate florals, you're sure to turn heads with<br />

this perfect spring look.<br />

Look For A More Sustainable Hair Care<br />

Routine<br />

With an increasing focus on sustainability over the last<br />

few years, it's time to adopt more economically friendly<br />

practices for your hair care routine.<br />

Look for hair care products that prioritise natural<br />

ingredients, recyclable packaging, <strong>and</strong> sustainable<br />

sourcing. Not only is this a great way for helping the<br />

environment but it also ensures that your hair stays<br />

healthy <strong>and</strong> vibrant throughout the season.<br />

Keep Your Hair Hydrated<br />

As temperatures rise, it's even more important to keep<br />

your hair hydrated.<br />

The warmer weather <strong>and</strong> exposure to the sun can leave<br />

your hair dry <strong>and</strong> frizzy <strong>and</strong> can damage it in the long<br />

run. Invest in a good -quality hydrating hair mask or<br />

conditioner to nourish your locks <strong>and</strong> keep it protected.<br />

Effortless Beach Waves<br />

Beach waves are a trend that have never really gone out<br />

of fashion. Gorgeous, carefree <strong>and</strong> natural, they’re a<br />

perfect option for your hair this season.<br />

You can achieve this look with a variety of methods,<br />

from using a styling w<strong>and</strong> to plaiting damp hair<br />

overnight. The key is to create natural-looking waves<br />

that mimic the tousled texture of beach-kissed hair.<br />

Perfect for bringing some laid-back glamour to casual<br />

events <strong>and</strong> everyday, or pair your waves with accessories<br />

<strong>and</strong> some volume for more formal settings.<br />

Floral Hair Accessories<br />

With flowers blooming everywhere in the spring, why<br />

Embrace Your Hair’s Natural Texture<br />

Recent years have become much more about natural<br />

beauty <strong>and</strong> less product, so why not stay with the trend<br />

<strong>and</strong> embrace your hair’s natural texture this spring?<br />

Whether you have naturally curly, wavy, or straight hair,<br />

let it shine in its natural state. Avoid excessive heat<br />

styling <strong>and</strong> huge amounts of product <strong>and</strong> let your<br />

natural hair shine.<br />

Whatever style or change you opt for this spring,<br />

remember that the most important things are expressing<br />

yourself <strong>and</strong> feeling good in yourself.<br />

So whether you’re inspired to try something br<strong>and</strong> new<br />

or just want to deviate slightly from what you’re<br />

comfortable with, make this season all about being your<br />

best you.<br />

By Katie Wilson


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To find out more call<br />

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Womens Health<br />

How Women’s Health Is<br />

Expected to Be Prioritised.<br />

The UK Health Secretary has<br />

announced new women’s health<br />

priorities for <strong>2024</strong>.<br />

The Health <strong>and</strong> Social Care<br />

Secretary has named ‘problem<br />

periods’, women’s health<br />

research <strong>and</strong> support for<br />

domestic <strong>and</strong> sexual abuse<br />

victims as the government’s<br />

priorities for the year.<br />

women easier access to care <strong>and</strong> improve health<br />

outcomes.<br />

• Improving the support for vulnerable women including<br />

those that are victims of sexual abuse <strong>and</strong> violence by<br />

ensuring training <strong>and</strong> support systems are working<br />

effectively <strong>and</strong> efficiently.<br />

• Bolstering maternity care both during <strong>and</strong> after<br />

pregnancy – by continuing to deliver on the NHS<br />

Engl<strong>and</strong>’s 3-year plan for maternity <strong>and</strong> neonatal<br />

services <strong>and</strong> ensuring women are aware of what they can<br />

expect from the NHS. There will also be more support<br />

for women suffering birth trauma <strong>and</strong> ensuring both<br />

mental <strong>and</strong> physical health are prioritised.<br />

• More research into women’s health – in addition to the<br />

NIHR challenge, they plan to build on the £53 million<br />

invested in these programmes <strong>and</strong> will continue to<br />

improve how women are represented in medical<br />

research.<br />

Health <strong>and</strong> Social Care Secretary, Victoria Atkins spoke<br />

at the Women’s Health Summit held in Central London<br />

<strong>and</strong> also said:<br />

“We’re breaking historical barriers that prevent<br />

women getting the care they need, building greater<br />

underst<strong>and</strong>ing of women’s healthcare issues <strong>and</strong><br />

ensuring their voices <strong>and</strong> choices are listened to.<br />

We’ve made huge progress - enabling almost half a<br />

million women access to cheaper HRT, supporting<br />

women through the agony of pregnancy loss <strong>and</strong><br />

opening new women’s health hubs - but I absolutely<br />

recognise there is more to do.<br />

We’re ensuring these changes benefit all women,<br />

regardless of socioeconomic background or<br />

ethnicity, because our Women’s Health Strategy is<br />

only a success if it works for all women.”<br />

These priorities have come from responses to the<br />

government’s call for evidence from over 100,00<br />

healthcare professionals, women’s health<br />

champions <strong>and</strong> members of the public within the<br />

UK.<br />

These calls for change bring positivity <strong>and</strong> hope to many<br />

women across the UK who have had to deal with illness,<br />

painful periods or difficult pregnancies while also facing<br />

the consequences of NHS struggles. Now well into <strong>2024</strong>,<br />

many women can now hope for changes, further support<br />

<strong>and</strong> more information in the coming months <strong>and</strong> years.<br />

To mark the second year of the Women’s Health<br />

Strategy for Engl<strong>and</strong> <strong>and</strong> after the success of the<br />

first twelve months which saw the reduction in the<br />

cost of HRT for close to half a million women, the<br />

UK government now plan to make further steps to<br />

improving women’s health.<br />

This call for evidence named the following as<br />

priorities to be looked into:<br />

• Better care for menstrual <strong>and</strong> gynaecological<br />

conditions – By creating women’s health hubs,<br />

continuing to improve support for women suffering from<br />

painful <strong>and</strong> heavy periods <strong>and</strong> endometriosis <strong>and</strong><br />

creating easier access to contraception.<br />

• Exp<strong>and</strong>ing women’s health hubs – By delivering<br />

through a £25 million investment, the hubs will allow<br />

By Katie Wilson


POWYS & MARCHES<br />

STONE SUPPLIES<br />

Powys & Marches Stone Supplies Ltd., is a family business<br />

established in 1990. Based at Four Crosses on the Shropshire <strong>and</strong><br />

Mid-Wales border, we are in the heart of slate <strong>and</strong> granite country.<br />

However, to offer the widest range for our customers nationally, we<br />

carefully choose Powys Stone products from selected quarries<br />

all over the UK <strong>and</strong> Europe.<br />

LEADING NATIONAL SUPPLIERS OF NATURAL STONE PRODUCTS<br />

FOR YOUR GARDEN AND TO THE TRADE<br />

This year we offer an even greater choice of Decorative Aggregates. A beautiful<br />

selection of colours <strong>and</strong> styles are sourced from quarries all over the UK <strong>and</strong> Europe.<br />

Whether it's a traditional English Garden or a designer led inspiration worthy of<br />

Chelsea Flower Show, you'll find the right option for your project with<br />

Powys & Marches Stone Supplies.<br />

n Aggregates n Rockery Stone n Walling Stone n Paving n Top Soil n Bark<br />

t: 01691 831 682 e: sales@powysstone.co.uk w: www.powysstone.co.uk


Home & Garden<br />

Best Fruit & Vegetables To<br />

Grow In March And April<br />

For anyone looking to make more use<br />

of their garden this year, now is the<br />

perfect time to get planting! With the<br />

weather changing, now is the time<br />

gardeners can enjoy the last of the<br />

cool weather <strong>and</strong> start taking steps<br />

for the warmer months.<br />

If you’re new to gardening or just<br />

need a little refresher on the best<br />

things to add to your vegetable<br />

garden, have a read of our top 6<br />

plants for March <strong>and</strong> April<br />

Tomatoes<br />

Tomatoes are the most popular vegetable to grow in<br />

gardens at home. With a wide range of options, you can<br />

choose your tomatoes based on the colour <strong>and</strong> variety<br />

you prefer.<br />

Now is the best time to begin planting your tomato seeds<br />

indoors to then transfer outside for when the colder<br />

weather has truly disappeared.<br />

of options. Just bear in mind that some require more<br />

space than other so make sure you read any seed packets<br />

before you buy!<br />

Peppers<br />

Peppers are a favourite option for your vegetable garden<br />

because as soon as they get closer to harvesting, they’ll<br />

also bring some colour to your outside space.<br />

Peppers take up little space <strong>and</strong> should be planted<br />

closely together to increase yield. Peppers can be<br />

planted now <strong>and</strong> the key is to start growing them from 6<br />

to 12 weeks before the last of the frost.<br />

Strawberries<br />

To ensure you have a delicious harvest of strawberries<br />

for the summer, strawberries should be planted in early<br />

spring.<br />

Small pots or trays are the most economical option for<br />

growing <strong>and</strong> be sure to cover them until they start to<br />

germinate. Your strawberry plants will then be ready to<br />

move from their trays to their permanent homes in a<br />

couple of month’s time.<br />

The tip is to ensure they are planted in well-drained soil<br />

<strong>and</strong> 30cm apart.<br />

Baby Kale<br />

A great addition to your plate, baby kale seeds are ready<br />

to sow now.<br />

One of the easiest brassicas to grow, they should be<br />

planted in nutrient-rich soil <strong>and</strong> the trick is to ensure<br />

they have plenty of water.<br />

Ensure they are moved to their permanent home in June<br />

<strong>and</strong> July <strong>and</strong> they will continue to produce delicious<br />

leaves for some time.<br />

Leeks<br />

Leeks are another great option for your garden,<br />

especially now as they thrive in the cooler weather <strong>and</strong><br />

are hardy enough to withst<strong>and</strong> any last shows of frost.<br />

The tip with leeks is to make sure your soil is as moist as<br />

it can be <strong>and</strong> make sure you’re watering them once a<br />

week if the weather stays dry. Another best bit of<br />

growing leeks is that you can choose to harvest them<br />

based on the size you want them.<br />

Cucumbers<br />

A great option for your spring salads, cucumbers can<br />

start being grown from seeds indoors now <strong>and</strong> they’ll be<br />

ready to be taken outside between April – June.<br />

Cucumbers are fast-growing <strong>and</strong> also come in a variety<br />

By Katie Wilson


Paveline<br />

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Contact us today for our<br />

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Unit D,<br />

Stafford Park 9,<br />

Telford, TF3 3AF


Home & Garden<br />

Top Tips To Refresh Your<br />

Garden In Time For <strong>Spring</strong><br />

Now close to the end of the colder<br />

weather, aren’t we all looking forward<br />

to the warmer days <strong>and</strong> spending<br />

time in the garden?<br />

Whether you’re an avid gardener or<br />

just like to have friends <strong>and</strong> family<br />

over in the garden, we’ve got some<br />

top tips to make sure your garden is<br />

truly spring ready<br />

The Big Clean Up<br />

After the cold <strong>and</strong> wet winter months, for many of us<br />

now is the time to give our outside space a much needed<br />

clean.<br />

Clear up any fallen leaves, stones <strong>and</strong> muck from the<br />

winter <strong>and</strong> give yourself a clear <strong>and</strong> empty space for the<br />

new season. Chances are your patio or decking will also<br />

not be looking it’s best so giving them a good thorough<br />

clean will brighten them right up <strong>and</strong> have them ready<br />

for entertaining.<br />

Make A Start On Your Vegetable Garden<br />

March <strong>and</strong> April are great months to start planting for<br />

the spring.<br />

While some vegetables need to be left inside first, there<br />

are also a good variety that can be sown outdoors now.<br />

Make sure you have some high quality compost <strong>and</strong><br />

plenty of space for your veggies to thrive <strong>and</strong> clean up<br />

their home ready for planting.<br />

You can use a range of fleeces to cover your plants so get<br />

everything out of the shed <strong>and</strong> get ready to make a start<br />

on your harvest for this year.<br />

Get Pruning<br />

Now is the perfect time to prune any bushes, trees or<br />

plants that are starting to take over areas in your<br />

garden.<br />

While you may want your garden to be a space filled<br />

with new life <strong>and</strong> colour for the spring, you also don’t<br />

want anything overshadowing your beautiful flowers <strong>and</strong><br />

plants.<br />

Get yourself a garden knife or a pair of secateurs <strong>and</strong><br />

start tackling anything that’s looking dead, damaged or<br />

crowded in your outside space.<br />

Refresh Your Furniture<br />

Give Your Lawn Some Much Needed TLC<br />

After the harsh winter months, your lawn certainly isn’t<br />

going to be looking it’s best.<br />

Get the moss killer on your lawn <strong>and</strong> get rid of any<br />

appearing weeds or mess before you tackle the first mow<br />

of the year. You can also now start to plant any grass<br />

seed for any areas that are looking patchy.<br />

If your lawn has started to lift from the frost, using a<br />

roller to flatten it will ensure it’s put back into shape<br />

<strong>and</strong> ready for the spring months.<br />

Have your table <strong>and</strong> chairs been firmly locked away over<br />

winter?<br />

Chances are all your beautiful furniture that’s been<br />

stored away for perfecting is going to need a little bit of<br />

love to get back to pristine condition.<br />

Be sure to take note of any cleaning instructions for your<br />

furniture <strong>and</strong> five everything a good clean or a fresh lick<br />

of paint in time for the warmer months. Start organising<br />

your outdoor comfort; throws, pillows <strong>and</strong> cushions so<br />

they’re ready to throw out by the time the sunshine has<br />

arrived.<br />

By Katie Wilson


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Home & Garden<br />

For <strong>Spring</strong>: Bringing Bright<br />

Colours Into Your Home<br />

As we get closer to the spring, why<br />

not make room for the warmth of the<br />

season by breathing some new life<br />

into your living space?<br />

One of the most effective ways to<br />

bring the season indoors is by<br />

embracing bright, vibrant colours<br />

that mirror the blossoming outdoors.<br />

Infusing your home with lively hues<br />

not only lifts your spirits but also<br />

creates a lively <strong>and</strong> inviting<br />

atmosphere for yourself <strong>and</strong> visitors<br />

to enjoy.<br />

Have a read of our top 5 ideas to<br />

bring the joy of springtime into your<br />

home.<br />

incorporating colour in smaller ways?<br />

Just adding colourful throws <strong>and</strong> pillows, bright rugs, or<br />

bold artwork can help to bring some energy into your<br />

living space while also giving it a whole new lease of life.<br />

These pops of colour will serve as focal points,<br />

transforming your room without overwhelming your<br />

existing decor. Experiment with patterns <strong>and</strong> textures to<br />

create a dynamic atmosphere that suits your style.<br />

Refresh Your Home With A New Paint Job<br />

A fresh coat of paint can work wonders in reviving your<br />

living space.<br />

Choose light <strong>and</strong> bright colours to maximise the natural<br />

light <strong>and</strong> watch your home take on a whole new<br />

personality. Consider painting a feature wall in a<br />

brighter shade to create a focal point to a currently<br />

quieter living space.<br />

If you're feeling adventurous, consider experimenting<br />

with ombre or geometric patterns to add a modern touch<br />

while also making use of some gorgeous bright colour.<br />

Bring In Floral Patterns<br />

Choose A Palette Inspired By Nature<br />

Begin your colour journey by drawing inspiration from<br />

the outdoors. Think of the vivid flowers in your garden,<br />

the blue skies <strong>and</strong> the lush greenery.<br />

Incorporate these shades into your home to create a<br />

beautiful link between the inside <strong>and</strong> out. A palette of<br />

pastel pinks, fresh greens, sunny yellows, <strong>and</strong> sky blues<br />

are perfect options for your home that’ll bring a feel of<br />

the season right to your living space.<br />

Not only do these colours bring the aura of spring into<br />

your home but they also bring a sense of calm <strong>and</strong><br />

creativity.<br />

Consider Colourful Features<br />

If you don’t feel ready or don’t have the budget for a full<br />

renovation of your home, why not start small by<br />

Floral patterns are synonymous with the season <strong>and</strong><br />

incorporating them into your home adds an instant<br />

touch of freshness.<br />

Choose floral-printed curtains, bedding, or cushions to<br />

give your living space a true feel of the blooming season.<br />

These patterns add a true nature-inspired element to<br />

your home, creating a seamless connection to the<br />

season.<br />

Make Use Of The Outdoor Elements<br />

Extend the vibrancy of your home into outdoor spaces<br />

such as patios or gardens. Invest in colourful outdoor<br />

furniture, vibrant planters, <strong>and</strong> bolder accessories this<br />

year.<br />

Creating a consistent décor style for both your indoor<br />

<strong>and</strong> outdoor space provides compatibility between the<br />

two <strong>and</strong> allows you to take full advantage of the season.<br />

Not only that, but it also gives your visitors something to<br />

admire whether they’re relaxing with you inside or<br />

enjoying a glass of wine with you outside in the warmer<br />

months!<br />

By Katie Wilson


Home & Garden<br />

Transform Your Kitchen:<br />

The Top 8 Must-Have<br />

Gadgets<br />

What’s the heart of every home? Yes,<br />

the kitchen.<br />

In today’s fast-paced world of<br />

modern living, everything is evolving<br />

<strong>and</strong> that includes the kitchen… <strong>and</strong><br />

with Christmas over <strong>and</strong> the hustle<br />

<strong>and</strong> bustle of getting back to routines,<br />

any gadget that can speed up the<br />

cooking routine has our vote!<br />

Instant Pot Duo<br />

Fed up with<br />

spending hours over<br />

the stove?<br />

Meet the Instant Pot Duo,<br />

a versatile multi-cooker<br />

that combines several<br />

kitchen appliances into<br />

one. It functions as a<br />

pressure cooker, slow cooker, rice cooker, steamer, sauté<br />

pan, <strong>and</strong> even a yoghurt maker.<br />

This makes the Instant Pot Duo perfect for busy<br />

households, ensuring you can still enjoy delicious,<br />

homemade meals without the hassle.<br />

Kenwood Chef St<strong>and</strong> Mixer<br />

Here’s one for the bakers!<br />

The Kenwood Chef St<strong>and</strong> Mixer is a trusty (<strong>and</strong> stylish!)<br />

addition to your kitchen. Multiple attachments make<br />

whipping up a cake or kneading dough simpler <strong>and</strong> less<br />

intense!<br />

From light <strong>and</strong> fluffy meringues to homemade bread,<br />

this mixer will become your go-to.<br />

Nespresso Vertuo Coffee Machine<br />

Start your day right with the Nespresso<br />

Vertuo.<br />

This smaller, sleeker coffee<br />

machines brings the café<br />

experience to you, fixing up a<br />

perfect cup of coffee at just the<br />

touch of a button.<br />

The Vertuo uses smart technology<br />

to extract the full flavour from<br />

your coffee, ensuring a rich <strong>and</strong><br />

satisfying drink every time.<br />

SodaStream Fizzi Sparkling Water Maker<br />

Looking for a healthier version of pop, <strong>and</strong> trying to<br />

reduce your plastic use? SodaStream Fizzi Sparkling<br />

Water Maker is the answer.<br />

Enjoy the refreshing taste of sparkling water right from<br />

your home, with features that enable you to customise<br />

your level of fizziness. It's not only cost-effective, but<br />

also a great way to be more eco-friendly.<br />

NutriBullet Blender<br />

For the healthier bunch, the NutriBullet<br />

Blender is a game-changer.<br />

This blender effortlessly turns fruits, vegetables, <strong>and</strong><br />

nuts into nutrient-packed smoothies, soups, <strong>and</strong> sauces.<br />

Also featuring easy-to-clean components!<br />

The NutriBullet makes healthy eating a convenient <strong>and</strong><br />

delicious part of your day.<br />

Joseph Joseph Index Chopping Board Set<br />

This colour-coded set of<br />

chopping boards helps<br />

prevent crosscontamination<br />

by<br />

assigning a specific board<br />

to different food groups.<br />

The boards fit neatly into a<br />

case, saving you cupboard<br />

space <strong>and</strong> ensuring a<br />

hygienic kitchen.<br />

Tefal ActiFry Air<br />

Fryer<br />

Indulge in your favourite fried foods guilt-free with the<br />

Tefal ActiFry Air Fryer. Using air frying technology, this<br />

fryer produces the tasty results you crave with just a<br />

fraction of the oil.<br />

From crispy chips to fried chicken, the ActiFry allows<br />

you to enjoy your favourite treats without feeling bad<br />

about it!<br />

Heston Blumenthal Precision Dual Probe<br />

Thermometer<br />

This smart thermometer helps ensure food safety,<br />

checking that your meats are cooked to perfection every<br />

time.<br />

With dual probes for meat <strong>and</strong> oven temperature, you<br />

can confidently create new dishes, without having to<br />

check multiple times if that chicken is still a little pink.<br />

Whether you’re a trained<br />

chef or a kitchen novice,<br />

these gadgets can help<br />

enhance your kitchen <strong>and</strong><br />

cooking routines, saving<br />

you time but also<br />

encouraging you to try out<br />

those new recipes! Get<br />

yours today <strong>and</strong> start<br />

Instagram / Tik Tok<br />

searching those recipes!<br />

By Katie Wilson


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<strong>Spring</strong> Cleaning To<br />

Improve Your Sleep<br />

The long-awaited <strong>Spring</strong> months are<br />

finally here! And with it we feel<br />

anew as the garden is starting to<br />

burst into colour & everything looks<br />

& feels just that little bit lighter. This is<br />

why we are motivated to spring<br />

clean, to clear away the energies of<br />

the long darker winter months &<br />

create space for the light.<br />

A good spring clean is the perfect<br />

way to refresh not only your home<br />

but your mind & lifestyle too. The<br />

bedroom is a good place to start as<br />

its where we spend a good<br />

proportion of our life. More people<br />

hit the sack earlier these days as the<br />

need to get better sleep calls &<br />

relaxing in a calm quiet space<br />

creates good health habits to set us<br />

up for a great night’s sleep.<br />

So, what constitutes a good<br />

Bedroom spring clean?<br />

Decluttering & Storage<br />

The first rule of spring cleaning is to<br />

declutter! It’s one of those tasks we<br />

all like to avoid but this is a perfect<br />

time to sort through everything you<br />

simply don’t need that is cluttering<br />

up your bedroom space. Allocate<br />

yourself sometime in the coming<br />

weeks to keep, throw, sell, or<br />

donate those things.<br />

Remember, your home & more<br />

importantly, your bedroom, should<br />

be a place of tranquillity where you<br />

can unwind after a long day. So, it’s<br />

no surprise that clutter can leave<br />

you feeling stressed, anxious &<br />

disorganised. Taking the time to<br />

spring clean this space to help<br />

prevent pests, dust, or mould, is time<br />

well spent.<br />

It’s also a good opportunity to<br />

assess if you need more purposeful<br />

space saving pieces of furniture that<br />

will help with storage. An Ottoman<br />

bed is an ideal piece of furniture in<br />

the bedroom that has the benefit of<br />

storing away those items you don’t<br />

want to see lying around.<br />

Cleaning<br />

It wouldn't be called <strong>Spring</strong> cleaning<br />

if there wasn't cleaning involved!<br />

Pulling out big items of furniture &<br />

dusting, wiping down & hoovering<br />

behind & under them will eradicate<br />

dust & also small insects that like to<br />

take up home behind & under these<br />

items! So clear away those<br />

cobwebs & declutter at the same<br />

time.<br />

Wash & Upgrade Your Bedding<br />

It’s time to strip your bedding<br />

completely to get rid of any old<br />

linen that is very much past its prime<br />

& look at upgrading to new ones.<br />

Having a mattress protector on the<br />

bed is essential & we do not sell any<br />

mattresses in our showroom without<br />

recommending one! For 2 reasons.<br />

They protect the guarantee on your<br />

mattress by keeping out moisture,<br />

dust mites & bed bugs. These are<br />

the very source of allergies & many<br />

people do not realise that they<br />

could actually be allergic to what's<br />

living in their mattress! The second<br />

reason is they protect you against all<br />

the above! So do yourself a favour<br />

& invest in a mattress protector (a<br />

waterproof one) sooner rather than<br />

later to stop any further build-up of<br />

these. We stock a wide range of<br />

protectors that are completely<br />

waterproof & will protect against all<br />

the above.<br />

Your Mattress, Flip It or Change It<br />

The Sleep Council recommends<br />

changing your mattress ever 7<br />

years, so, if you’ve had yours longer<br />

than that, it’s probably time to get<br />

rid. If it’s a flip mattress it’s definitely<br />

time to flip it over & sleep on the<br />

other side, giving you another sleep<br />

surface until it’s time to flip it again.<br />

A good practice to get into & we<br />

recommend following the specific<br />

company's guidelines on this.<br />

Whilst we might be a bit biased, one<br />

of the easiest ways to improve your<br />

sleep is with a new mattress. Is your<br />

mattress starting to sag? Are the<br />

springs constantly interrupting your<br />

slumber? Or maybe it just looks like<br />

it’s time to let go? Whatever the<br />

issue, if your mattress isn’t what it<br />

used to be, this can massively<br />

impact your sleep quality.<br />

We absolutely have your back on<br />

this as we know how much Your<br />

Sleep Matters & are here to advise<br />

on what mattress or sleeping system<br />

will suit you best. With over 2<br />

decades of experience in the bed<br />

industry, we know what’s new &<br />

what’s great for your health & wellbeing<br />

so pop along to our<br />

showroom to see the full range we<br />

have in store soon.<br />

Unit 1 <strong>Spring</strong>field Ind. Est.<br />

Newport, TF10 7NB<br />

01952 820401<br />

(Option 2 for Newport Beds)<br />

www.newportbeds.co.uk


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89


Car Review<br />

SUBARU Forester e-Boxer<br />

Sport Hybrid By Sue Cooke<br />

Are you planning a holiday for Easter?<br />

Are you fed up with airport queues<br />

<strong>and</strong> long delays? If your family is<br />

looking forward to a holiday<br />

adventure full of excitement <strong>and</strong><br />

exploration, then the SUV which<br />

offers go anywhere capability <strong>and</strong> sure<br />

footed h<strong>and</strong>ling is SUBARU’S fifth<br />

generation Forester.<br />

Are you planning a holiday for Easter? Are you fed up<br />

with airport queues <strong>and</strong> long delays? If your family is<br />

looking forward to a holiday adventure full of<br />

excitement <strong>and</strong> exploration, then the SUV which offers<br />

go anywhere capability <strong>and</strong> sure footed h<strong>and</strong>ling is<br />

SUBARU’S fifth generation Forester.<br />

The Forester e-Boxer is completely re-designed inside<br />

<strong>and</strong> out, is built on the Subaru Global platform <strong>and</strong> is as<br />

practical for everyday driving as it is off road.<br />

The exterior rugged styling has strong contoured<br />

bodywork <strong>and</strong> prominent wheel arches. The Sport trim<br />

which I road tested, has 18” dark painted alloy wheels.<br />

St<strong>and</strong>ard features include Keyless Entry <strong>and</strong> Push<br />

Button Start System, LED headlights, equipped with<br />

high beam assist, <strong>and</strong> LED front fog lights. A touch of<br />

luxury is added with privacy glass on the rear windows.<br />

In the cabin, which is airy <strong>and</strong> spacious, the family SUV<br />

has an intuitive 8" multifunction colour touchscreen<br />

that I found easy to use, which offers Apple CarPlay<br />

<strong>and</strong> Android Auto, DAB radio <strong>and</strong> Bluetooth®<br />

connectivity.<br />

I found the five seater extremely comfortable, with<br />

minimal vibration on the move, even on rough roads. A<br />

comment which was endorsed by my rear seat<br />

passengers who had access to their own ventilation<br />

system. There is a wide, easy opening on entering or<br />

leaving the car. The driver <strong>and</strong> front passenger seats<br />

are 8-way power adjustable <strong>and</strong> are heated. For a<br />

welcome heat boost on colder mornings, there is also a<br />

heated steering wheel.<br />

The Side View Monitor, mounted at the base of the<br />

passenger door mirror, displays camera images onto the<br />

multi-information display to show blind spots. The<br />

display from the camera was useful when manoeuvring<br />

close to an object, navigating narrow roads, passing<br />

oncoming cars or parking. To help judge distances,<br />

guidelines overlay all camera images.<br />

There is a whole suite of driver assist <strong>and</strong> safety<br />

features. Many of them monitor any hazards around<br />

the car <strong>and</strong> sound a warning. ‘Eyesight’ technology will<br />

detect vehicles, motorbikes, bicycles <strong>and</strong> pedestrians.<br />

When a potential hazard is identified, it warns the driver<br />

<strong>and</strong> even applies the brakes if necessary, to help avoid<br />

an accident.<br />

The multi information display shows the driver when the<br />

car is using the petrol engine, the electric motor or<br />

combining the hybrid power. The Forester E-Boxer is a<br />

self charging hybrid so the 2 litre petrol engine charges<br />

the lithium ion battery while you drive.<br />

If your holiday includes driving off road, I am impressed<br />

with the controlled hill descent on a very steep slippery<br />

hill. The newly evolved X-Mode has a mode for slippery<br />

surfaces covered with snow, dirt, or gravel, or for<br />

treacherous road conditions where vehicles can become<br />

stuck. All the driver has to do is steer. Ground<br />

clearance is 220mm <strong>and</strong> towing capacity is 1,870kg<br />

which is one of the best in its class.<br />

The exp<strong>and</strong>ed luggage area offers 509 litres which<br />

increases to 1071 litres with seats folded, so easily copes<br />

with family luggage. I like the power tailgate, the boot<br />

light <strong>and</strong> the upper cargo hooks. The wide opening<br />

means it is easy to load <strong>and</strong> unload even large objects<br />

without having to tilt them. There is ample room for up<br />

to four large suitcases.<br />

The exceptionally smooth <strong>and</strong> refined SUBARU Forester<br />

E-Boxer is a comfortable, spacious SUV <strong>and</strong> is ideal for a<br />

long distance family driving holiday.<br />

Facts at a Glance<br />

Model: Subaru Forester E-Boxer Sport Lineartronic Hybrid<br />

Price: £40,090otr<br />

Engine: 2 litre petrol <strong>and</strong> Lithium Ion battery.<br />

CVT transmission<br />

Performance: 0-62mph in 11.8 seconds <strong>and</strong> on to a top<br />

speed of 117 mph<br />

Combined fuel consumption: 34.7mpg<br />

CO2 emissions: 185g/km combined (WLTP)


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Car Review<br />

BYD SEAL All Electric Saloon<br />

By Sue Cooke<br />

<strong>Spring</strong> completes BYD’s model line-up<br />

for now, but there is more to come.<br />

The Chinese auto manufacturer’s<br />

battery electric fastback is the new<br />

SEAL. The saloon is gorgeous looking<br />

<strong>and</strong> has already won the ‘iF’ design<br />

award for its rather unique X-face<br />

front styling. The design is inspired<br />

by the Ocean <strong>and</strong> the motion side<br />

styling adds an assertive stance. The<br />

SEAL is recognisable by its double<br />

shaped light cluster <strong>and</strong> a continuous<br />

rear, LED tail light.<br />

Innovative technology includes an award-winning<br />

Blade battery which is uniquely horizontal <strong>and</strong> the<br />

company says is a safer battery, benefitting from an<br />

increase in impact protection. The Euro NCAP safety<br />

rating is 5 stars. The mid-size sedan uses in house<br />

developed cell to body technology (CTB) so the Blade<br />

battery becomes more than an energy source <strong>and</strong> has<br />

a structural component capable of withst<strong>and</strong>ing<br />

significant force. H<strong>and</strong>ling is better due to improved<br />

aerodynamics. The st<strong>and</strong>ard heat pump helps with<br />

battery efficiency in cold temperatures, so good for<br />

March wintry conditions. Skidding is minimised or<br />

eliminated using the Intelligent Talk Control Torque<br />

Adaption control system.<br />

The innovative Blade battery is used on other BYD<br />

models, the Atto SUV <strong>and</strong> the Dolphin.<br />

There are numerous features which are useful in the<br />

interior of the SEAL. Comfortable integrated sports<br />

leather seats are heated <strong>and</strong> ventilated, <strong>and</strong> front<br />

seats are electrically adjustable. What my tall<br />

passenger appreciated was the flat floor which gave<br />

him plenty of space for long legs. My child passenger<br />

commented on the fantastic views through the onepiece<br />

panoramic roof. As it was cold <strong>and</strong> chilly on<br />

our Easter journey to visit relatives, I much<br />

appreciated the heated steering wheel.<br />

What the SEAL has which other BYD models do not<br />

have, is a 53-litre covered storage space lying under<br />

the bonnet which usefully houses the charging cable.<br />

Storage in the boot has an average 400 litre capacity.<br />

Entertainment is provided by the 15.6” multimedia<br />

touch screen which very uniquely rotates, from<br />

horizontal to portrait at the touch of a button. It is<br />

useful for advanced visibility, when using the<br />

satellite navigation directions. Other entertainment<br />

comes from the hi fi Dynaudio premium sound<br />

system which has 12 speakers <strong>and</strong> a rear subwoofer!<br />

Everything within the SEAL is quality.<br />

There are two powertrains to choose from. The<br />

electric drivetrain delivers a maximum combined<br />

motor power output of 530PS. ‘Design’ trim<br />

promises a range of 384 miles <strong>and</strong> is rear wheel<br />

drive. ‘Excellence’ will reach 323 miles <strong>and</strong> for<br />

Easter weather, has useful all-wheel drive. I didn’t<br />

get to check this at its launch, but BYD says that a<br />

fast charge will take a very reasonable 26 minutes.<br />

As with most all electric cars I have road tested<br />

recently, the 0-62mph in the all-wheel drive version,<br />

takes a very fast 3.8 seconds.<br />

The all-electric BYD SEAL offers a dynamic,<br />

intelligent offering. The D segment saloon is<br />

premium quality <strong>and</strong> therefore you might expect a<br />

premium price but the cost is surprising <strong>and</strong> less<br />

expensive than other manufacturers’ premium car<br />

costs. The ‘Design’ RWD costs from £45,695 <strong>and</strong> the<br />

PCP over 49 months, with an average deposit of £10k<br />

will cost £549pm. The all-wheel drive ‘Excellence’<br />

costs from £48,695 with a useful head up display <strong>and</strong><br />

the PCP is £559.<br />

Facts at a Glance<br />

Model: BYD SEAL fastback saloon all electric<br />

Power: 82.5 kWh new LFP Blade Battery with a<br />

384 mile range (WLTP) RWD<br />

Performance: 0-62mph in 5.9 seconds<br />

Charging time: WLTP 26 minutes fast charge<br />

CO2 emissions: Nought<br />

Price: from £45,695 otr for the ‘Design’


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Men’s Health<br />

Men’s Mental Health<br />

by Dribbz...<br />

Yes people, I hope you are all keeping well.<br />

From reading my previous articles, you may<br />

be aware by now that i'm a local music artist<br />

called Dribbz, who has a passion for flying the<br />

flag for Men's mental health. My aim with<br />

these articles is for one reader to relate <strong>and</strong><br />

take comfort in knowing that they are never<br />

alone in feeling the way they do. This is why i<br />

originally chose to share my story <strong>and</strong> from<br />

doing this I have had so many males come<br />

forward who have taken my advice <strong>and</strong> the<br />

advice of the people that i feature. This month<br />

I bring you the words of a friend of mine<br />

called Pete, a like minded well established<br />

artist within the Midl<strong>and</strong>s music scene. He is<br />

no stranger to sharing his story <strong>and</strong> openly<br />

talks on various platforms about things that<br />

have helped him move forward with life <strong>and</strong><br />

his own mental health.<br />

I had a 10 year battle with depression that steamed from<br />

the bereavement of a close family member. I tried<br />

everything from anti-depressants, counselling <strong>and</strong> self<br />

help groups which made very little difference in my<br />

recovery, then lockdown come along which gave me a<br />

real opportunity to reset <strong>and</strong> focus on body <strong>and</strong> mind.<br />

I made daily efforts to pushing myself to train Monday<br />

to Friday, exercising at home with resistance b<strong>and</strong>s,<br />

barbell <strong>and</strong> dumbbell workouts followed by a 3-5 mile<br />

run. Within a 2 week period I had completely shifted the<br />

balance in my brain to a consistence in positivity <strong>and</strong><br />

forward thinking. As a result of pushing myself <strong>and</strong><br />

staying disciplined I had naturally increased the<br />

serotonin levels <strong>and</strong> the endorphins were fully working<br />

their magic. Following this I promoted my depression<br />

sessions on facebook live talking about my journey with<br />

depression <strong>and</strong> the extent with suicidal thoughts<br />

throughout.<br />

Well, to open this article with a small introduction of<br />

myself, I’m Pete frequen-cee. I have actively worked in<br />

the drum <strong>and</strong> bass scene for 20 years DJing in clubs<br />

across the country <strong>and</strong> Europe spreading the word of<br />

our beautiful scene, Promoting my br<strong>and</strong> St<strong>and</strong>fast<br />

Audio.<br />

Aside from the music my main focus the past 3 years has<br />

been to raise awareness of mental health in men <strong>and</strong><br />

knife crime awareness.<br />

Once lockdown was over I put a lot of focus into charity<br />

work <strong>and</strong> fundraising regularly, reaching targets of 100<br />

miles in a month along with Jiu-Jitsu <strong>and</strong> MMA training<br />

with my second family – Wolves BJJ. Having this vital<br />

camaraderie in place <strong>and</strong> consistency of uplifting one<br />

another has really helped in my battle – sweat it out of<br />

you!!!<br />

Thankfully this all had taken place before the loss of my<br />

nephew in the Telford area due to knife crime – I was<br />

able to overcome in a constructive manor taking part in<br />

charity cage events <strong>and</strong> live music streams to raise as<br />

much awareness as possible. If I wasn’t in this frame of<br />

mind beforeh<strong>and</strong>, I wouldn’t be here to write this!<br />

Let’s talk”<br />

Thank you<br />

By Ad Morris


1 2 3 4 5 6 7<br />

8<br />

9 10<br />

11 12 13 14 15 16<br />

17 18<br />

19<br />

20 21 22 23 24<br />

25 26<br />

27 28<br />

29 30<br />

31<br />

32 33<br />

Clues Across<br />

1. Notice of death (8)<br />

6. Renown (4)<br />

8. Reverence (3)<br />

9. Monarch's attendant<br />

(8)<br />

10. Shade (4)<br />

12. Young female horse<br />

(5)<br />

14. Uplift (5)<br />

17. Sudden attack (4)<br />

18. Poor quality verse<br />

(8)<br />

20. Slaughter (8)<br />

24. Feel concern (4)<br />

25. Come in (5)<br />

26. Tale (5)<br />

29. Unfortunately (4)<br />

30. Women's underwear<br />

(8)<br />

31. In the past (3)<br />

32. Forehead (4)<br />

33. Over-confident (8)<br />

Clues Down<br />

2. Powerful stroke (4)<br />

3. Passionate (6)<br />

4. Abroad (6)<br />

5. Thread (4)<br />

6. Physical condition (6)<br />

7. Sixty seconds (6)<br />

11. Dirt (5)<br />

12. Initial (5)<br />

13. Belonging to you (5)<br />

14. Ovum (3)<br />

15. Imposing display (5)<br />

16. Senior (5)<br />

19. Pitch (3)<br />

21. Deer's horn (6)<br />

22. Playground item (6)<br />

23. Concerning nations<br />

or races (6)<br />

24. Crawls (6)<br />

27. Alliance of countries<br />

(4)<br />

28. Row (4)<br />

Solution:<br />

Across — 1 Obituary; 6 Fame; 8 Awe; 9 Courtier; 10 Tint; 12 Filly; 14 Elate; 17 Raid; 18 Doggerel; 20 Massacre; 24 Care;<br />

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Down — 2 Blow; 3 Torrid; 4 Afield; 5 Yarn; 6 Fettle; 7 Minute; 11 Grime; 12 First; 13 Yours; 14 Egg; 15 Array; 16 Elder; 19<br />

Tar; 21 Antler; 22 Seesaw; 23 Ethnic; 24 Creeps; 27 Bloc; 28 Tier.<br />

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11

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