Sunday, 31 March 2013

St Seraphim's Trust presents An Evening of Icons – Walsingham Norfolk

St Seraphim's Trust presents an evening of Icons on Wednesday, April 17, 7.30pm start at Walsingham Village Hall (NR22 6DJ), free entry and free refreshments.

Fr. Stephen Stavrou, Associate Vicar at St Michael’s and All Angels, Bedford Park, London will talk about ‘The beauty of holiness’, the art of the Icon and the mission of the church today.

                        Photograph: Mike Dixon St Seraphim's Trust 

Fr. Stephen is an Anglican priest from an Orthodox background. He studied theology at St John’s College Cambridge and prepared for ordained ministry at Westcott House, while also doing a Masters at Peterhouse. His research focused on the use of liturgical arts in Worship, particularly Orthodox Christian Iconography.

There will also be an introduction to the new Friends of St Seraphim's and an update on the future of St Seraphim's Chapel, including the bid for funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

St Seraphim’s Trust is based in the former Walsingham Railway Station, home to St Seraphim’s Orthodox Chapel since 1967.  Plans are being developed for a full Heritage Lottery bid this year for funds to interpret and present to visitors the story of St Seraphim’s, a centre for traditional Orthodox Icon painting for more than 40 years, along with the building’s railway heritage (1857-1964).

                                          St Seraphim's Chapel
The Trust aims to build on the long tradition of Orthodox Icon painting carried out by Father David (d 1993) and Leon Liddament (d. 2010) at the chapel. Their icons were highly regarded and can be seen in churches and homes throughout the UK and worldwide. Icons of early British saints, including local saints, were an important part of their work.

Sylvia Batchelor, St Seraphim’s Trust said: “We look forward to welcoming old and new friends to Fr. Stavrou’s talk. We are also collecting memories of the working life of Walsingham Railway Station and are asking owners of Icons painted by Father David or Leon Liddament, to let us know about the Icon and if possible, to send an image.”

Please send your memories and photographs to: Sylvia Batchelor, St Seraphim’s Trust, Station Road, Little Walsingham NR22 6EB, email,, t 01328 820610.

The Orthodox Faith in Walsingham
The story of the Orthodox faith in Walsingham began in the 1930s when emigrĂ© Russian priests visited the Anglican Shrine. A Pan-Orthodox Chapel was established at the Anglican Shrine in 1945. But the growth of interest in the Orthodox faith led to the development of St Seraphim’s Chapel in the old railway station in 1967. Father David, the priest in charge led a Lay Brotherhood of St Seraphim and created the Icon workshop. Further growth in the Orthodox community saw the opening of the Holy Church of the Transfiguration in Great Walsingham in 1988.

Saturday, 30 March 2013

Books and Beer at the Little Beer Shop, Blofield Norfolk

The Tagman Press has established it’s first shop courtesy of Uncle Stuart's Brewery. Tagman books are now on sale at The Little Beer Shop, Norwich Camping & Leisure, Blofield Norfolk, alongside Uncle Stuart’s Brewery’s Norfolk beers.

Stuart Evans Uncle Stuart’s Brewery (left) is pictured with Anthony Grey of The Tagman Press in The Little Beer Shop.

Stuart Evans said: “We have a licence to serve draught beer, as well as our range of bottled beers and have both indoor and outdoor seating area, so customers will be able to browse Tagman books and an enjoy a beer at the same time.”

Anthony Grey, founder of the Tagman Press said: “We have provided browsing copies of our books, so Stuart’s customers can relax and check out the Tagman titles. It’s a wonderful opportunity for us and I would like Stuart Evans for his support.”

The Little Beer Shop is at Norwich Camping and Leisure
58 Yarmouth Rd, Blofield, Norfolk NR13 4LQ,

Tagman titles currently on sale at the Little Beer Shop include Anthony Grey’s best-selling historic novels Peking and Tokyo Bay, Dr Batmanghelidj’s series of ‘water cure’ books and the first six books in Margit Sandemo’s saga The Legend of the Ice People,

For more information about Uncle Stuart’s Brewery see, t 01603 7131261.

Saturday, 23 March 2013

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, Norfolk Broads, Marks English Tourism Week

Keith Simpson MP for Broadland visited Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden in the Norfolk Broads, on Friday, March 22 to mark English Tourism Week and meet Sally Randell, Fairhaven’s Visit England Tourism Superstar finalist.

 Sally Randell is pictured serving tea to Mr Simpson

Keith Simpson said: “Sally served a marvellous home cooked afternoon tea made with local produce. The sweet and savoury combination was a real delight.”

Louise Rout, Manager, Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden said: “We were very pleased that Mr Simpson visited us during English Tourism Week and met Sally. Thank you very much to everyone who voted for Sally as Visit England's Tourism Superstar. She didn't win the title, but it was a fantastic achievement for her to reach the final and a great boost for the year head. Congratulations to the winner, Claire Preece of Kents Cavern Torquay."

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, at South Walsham, is open daily, 10am to 5pm all year (closed Christmas Day), t 01603 270449,

The Maids Head Norwich – England’s Oldest Hotel – Marks English Tourism Week

Simon Wright MP for Norwich South met David Chaplin, the new owner of the 13th century Maids Head Hotel in Tombland Norwich, on Friday, March 22 to mark English Tourism Week. The hotel is believed to be the oldest in England.

In The Wine Press Restaurant, front Simon Wright MP and David Chaplin owner of The Maids Head   Hotel and back left to right: Nick Bond Visit Norwich, Melanie Cook Visit Norwich, Christine Malcolm, General Manager The Maids Head Hotel
The Chaplin family, which owns the four-star Gonville Hotel in Cambridge, bought the Maids Head Hotel (also four-star) in December 2012. Mr Chaplin, whose family has many connections with the area said: “We are very excited to have brought the hotel back into private ownership. The Maids Head has a long and distinguished history hosting Norwich celebrations throughout the centuries and welcoming many famous faces including The Black Prince and Catharine of Aragon and in more recent times, David Niven and Morecambe and Wise. I was delighted to show Mr Wright the hotel and explain our ambition for the Maids Head to be one of the leading independent hotels in East Anglia.”

Mr Chaplin added: “Norwich has a brilliant cultural, heritage and shopping offer. We look forward to working with Visit Norwich, Norwich HEART and other partners in the Cathedral Quarter to promote Norwich as one of the top city break destinations in England.”

Simon Wright MP said: “The Maids Head is an important part of Norwich’s heritage, and is known to be the oldest hotel in the country. I’m delighted that it’s now in the hands of a family who care about the area, and who are committed to delivering a successful future for the hotel.”

A new emphasis on using local suppliers and contractors has been introduced and the hotel team is aiming for a second AA Rosette for the Wine Press restaurant. Improvements planned in the hotel include refurbishment of the public area toilets, installation of electronic locks on the guest bedrooms, enhancing guest suites and an upgrading the boiler system.

For more information about The Maids Head Hotel see, t 01603 209955.

Tourism in Norwich is worth £432 million to the local economy, supporting 7,357 jobs, with more than 5.2 million visitors annually,

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Great Yarmouth Heritage Walk – Easter Special

Explore historic Great Yarmouth on a special Easter Holiday Heritage Walk on Wednesday, April 3, taking in historic South Quay and St George’s Theatre. The walk starts at 2pm from the Fishermen’s Hospital Gates in the Market Place and lasts approx. 1½ hours.

Places must be booked in advance on 01493 846346, or at Great Yarmouth Tourist Information Centre, Marine Parade. Prices: £6.50 adults, £4.50 children (7-16), under 7’s free, price includes refreshments at English Heritage’s Row Houses.  Twenty maximum on the walk, so book early (10 minimum for guided walk to take place).

South Quay was once described as the finest quay in all Europe. Learn about the area’s stunning architecture; find out about Yarmouth’s witches and The Tolhouse Museum, the oldest gaol in the country; visit Greyfriars’ Cloisters and discover the story of the newly refurbished St George’s Theatre.

For details of Great Yarmouth’s full programme of Heritage Walks see, or pick up a leaflet at Great Yarmouth Tourist Information Centre.

Raveningham Gardens Norfolk - Easter opening

Raveningham Gardens near Hales in South Norfolk is opening on Easter Sunday, March 31 and Easter Monday, April 1, 2pm to 5pm.

Enjoy spring flowers, notably crocus, iris and daffodils, which are starting to show and explore the 18th century walled kitchen garden, Victorian glasshouses, arboretum and herb garden and view the contemporary sculpture throughout the gardens.  Also visit Raveningham’s 14th century church.  Tea and cakes are on sale on Easter Sunday and Monday.

Raveningham Gardens, Raveningham, NR14 6NS is also open all Thursdays, 11am to 4pm, from April 4 to the end of August, admission adult £4, concessions £3.50 and children under 16 free. Tel. 01508 548152,

Easter at Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden - Norfolk Broads

Head to Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden at South Walsham in the Norfolk Broads for an Easter Egg Trail, Scavenger Hunt and Geocache Trail over the Easter holidays.

The Easter Egg Trail is on Good Friday, March 29 from 11am to 4pm. Follow the Guess Who? trail round the garden to the Glade, with an ‘eggy’ prize at the end. Normal garden entry applies plus £2 per child for the Easter Egg Trail (every child will receive an egg).

The Scavenger Hunt Bonanaza runs from Saturday, March 30 to Sunday, April 14, daily 10am to 5pm. Go scavenger hunting in the woods and fit as many tiny objects as you can into a small container, normal garden entry charges.

The Geocache Trail runs from Thursday, March 28 until the autumn, featuring a visual cache trail round the garden. Visitors will need their own gps device, portable sat nav, or sat nav app on their smart phone. The clue list will be available in the gift shop; normal garden entry charges.

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden is at South Walsham, nine miles east of Norwich, signposted off A47 at B1140 junction,, t. 01603 270449.

The garden is open daily all year from 10am to 5pm (closed Christmas Day and closes 4pm in the winter).  Garden entry is adult £6, concessions £5.50 and child £3.50 (under 5 free); free entry to tearoom, gift shop and plant sales. There is wheelchair access throughout the garden, including a Sensory Garden. Visitors requiring special facilities are advised to telephone in advance, mobility scooters available. Dogs are welcome on leads; small charge to cover poop scoop.

Friday, 15 March 2013

Early Riser and Early Spring Walk at Fairhaven Garden Norfolk Broads

Experience the beauty and tranquillity of Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden, South Walsham, Norfolk Broads at dawn on Saturday 23 March with the ‘Early Riser’ starting at 6am; standard entry charge adult £6, concessions £5.50, child £3.50 (under 5 free). Take an optional boat trip in the Primrose on Fairhaven’s private broad (£3.75 adult; £2.75 child) Full English breakfast is also available in the tearoom, booking only £6.50, t. 01603 270449.

Or join the Early Spring Walk on Sunday 24 March at 11am. Explore the garden with Head Gardener Ian Guest and enjoy the spring flowers, which are starting to show – wild primroses and daffodils, as well as wood anemones and camellias; standard entry charge, adult £6, concessions £5.50, child £3.50 (under 5 free).

Fairhaven Woodland and Water Garden is at South Walsham, nine miles east of Norwich, signposted off A47 at B1140 junction,, t. 01603 270449.

The garden is open daily all year from 10am to 5pm (closed Christmas Day); free entry to tearoom, gift shop and plant sales. There is wheelchair access throughout the garden, including a Sensory Garden. Visitors requiring special facilities are advised to telephone in advance, mobility scooters available. Dogs are welcome on leads; small charge to cover poop scoop.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

The Hostage Handbook by Anthony Grey, publication date 11 April 2013

The Hostage Handbook - publication date 11 April 2013
Anthony Grey, working then for Reuters, was the only British journalist in Beijing at the height of the Cultural Revolution. In 1967, he became the first international hostage of the modern era, 'courtesy' of the Red Guards.
This new edition in paperback of The Hostage Handbook, published by  The Tagman Press contains the secret shorthand diary of his two-year solitary ordeal in China. It is published on 11 April to mark the 45th anniversary of a profound metaphysical experience during his confinement. And in “reflections” interleaved between the diary entries, he now writes about it for the first time, explaining how It has had an enduring impact on his subsequent life as a best-selling author, broadcaster and publisher.
To order The Hostage Handbook (£15) contact Sonja Haggett,, t. 0845 6444186,
“A brilliant book by a brave and brilliant man.” Stewart Quentin Holmes, author of Nothing Really Serious
“The Hostage Handbook has much in common with The Diary of Anne Frank. It covers a similar period of time -- two years and two months – and I believe it will also inspire in the same way, the many people who read it.” John Clements, author of the self-help guide book  Aspire to Greatness.
It is a remarkably human and inspiring document. While still a prisoner he thought this was a completely wasted period of his life. Now as so often happens when human beings are faced with extreme deprivation, he has turned it into a remarkable achievement.” Joyce Dunbar, author of  The Monster Who Ate Darkness
“An important document at a time when hostage-taking has become so frequent as to be almost commonplace in some parts of the world … Its author emerges as a man of extraordinary courage, resilience and strength of character – but also of remarkable modesty.”  Vergil Berger, former Reuters bureau chief in Beijing

Saturday, 9 March 2013

Shackleton at Wymondham Arts Centre – the greatest survival story ever told

Head to Wymondham Arts Centre (Norfolk) on Saturday 23 March, 7pm start, for Shackleton the greatest survival story ever told. Geoff Selley recreates the original magic lantern lecture about Shackleton’s 1914-17 Antarctic expedition. Entry to the lecture is £10, with proceeds going to the Antarctic Heritage Trust, The South Georgia Heritage Trust and Save the Albatross and The Christina Noble Children’s Foundation.

Tickets are available from Arthur Lucas t. 01953 602214 or at Wymondham Arts Centre from 22 March, limited availability, book early.

Dr Hussey, a member of Shackleton’s expedition, toured Britain on his return from the Antarctic with a magic lantern show that featured images taken by Frank Hurley, the expedition photographer. Using Dr Hussey’s original notes, Geoff Selley recreates the lecture showing reproductions of Frank Hurley’s slides.

Shackleton tells the story of the ill-fated 1914-17 expedition, including the group’s survival after the loss of their ship, and Shackleton’s epic journey to South Georgia to bring help back to his stranded crew.

Wymondham Arts Centre is also staging Deep South from Friday, March 22 to Sunday, April 14. This exciting and vivid interpretation of Antarctica, featuring work by seven artists who met on a cruise to the region in 2009, including Norfolk artists Krys Leach and Tracy Myers, launches Wymondham Arts Centre’s 2013 season. The exhibition, which is curated by Krys Leach, is open daily: Monday to Saturday, 10am to 5pm and Sunday 12noon to 5pm, free entry.

Arthur Lucas, Chairman Wymondham Arts Forum project said: “The opportunity to host the lecture just ahead of the centenary of Shackleton’s epic voyage, in conjunction with the Deep South exhibition, was too good to be missed.  Geoff Selley will display artefacts from the expedition at the Arts Centre on the afternoon of Saturday 23 March and will discuss them informally with visitors.”

Wymondham Arts Centre is at Becket’s Chapel, Church Street, Wymondham NR18 0PH, email

Hair Braiding Marathon at The Forum Norwich 16 March

Angela Barnes, of Norwich based Select Hair is staging a unique event, a ‘Hair Braiding Marathon’ at The Forum in Norwich on Saturday 16 March from 10am to 4pm, in aid of the Epilepsy Unit at Norfolk & Norwich University Hospital.

Angela would like a steady stream of customers to arrive at The Forum throughout the day for 10-minute hair braiding sessions, so she can complete a non-stop ‘Marathon’. Visitors to The Forum are also welcome to make a donation without having their hair done. There will be a choice of four main braiding designs on the day, costing £5 per person, with all funds going directly to the Epilepsy Unit. Bring your own accessories or buy them on the day from Select Hair.

Also attending all day will be Sheena Golder of Tinkernails & Goldelocks, who is offering pampering with Mini Manicures at £8 (£5 to the Epilepsy Unit) and ‘Gel Nails’ (priced on the day with a donation to the Epilepsy Unit). Sheena can also be located in the Salon at Unique Hair & Beauty in Norwich.

To book an early-bird appointment from 9.30am, braiding or nail session (five to ten minute appointments), please call Angie of Select Hair on 07870 473518, email,, or Sheena of Tinkernails & Goldelocks on 07557 761087.

Marie Jones of Scentsy will be at The Forum from 10am to 12.30pm, donating 10% of proceeds to the Epilepsy Unit. Scentsy is a safe, wickless alternative to scented candles. For further information regarding Scentsy products, contact Marie Jones on 07836 650957,

Meet Norwich-based international best-selling author Anthony Grey, who will be signing copies of The Hostage Handbook at £10 each, from 2pm to 4pm, with proceeds to the Epilepsy Unit. Anthony will also have a selection of other Tagman Press books and novels for sale. For more information about Anthony Grey, see

Angela Barnes said: “We are looking forward to a very busy day in aid of an excellent cause. Please book early to avoid disappointment! ”

Thursday, 7 March 2013

Deep South Antarctica Exhibition launches Wymondham Arts Centre’s 2013 Season

Deep South, an exciting and vivid interpretation of Antarctica, featuring work by seven artists who met on a cruise to the region, including Norfolk artists Krys Leach and Tracy Myers, launches Wymondham Arts Centre (Norfolk) 2013 season on Friday, March 22.

The exhibition, which is curated by Krys Leach, runs from Friday, March 22 to Sunday, April 14 and is open daily: Monday to Saturday, 10am to 5pm and Sunday 12noon to 5pm, free entry.

Krys Leach and Tracy Myers from Honing went on a trip of lifetime to the Antarctic peninsular, the Falkland Islands and South Georgia in 2009 to celebrate 25 years of being together. During the cruise they met five other artists. The result of this meeting is Deep South.

                                                     Whale Town: Tracy Myers

The Wymondham show is Deep South’s grand finale. Libby Jones, a printmaker from Twickenham, was the driving force behind bringing the exhibition together. It was first shown, to great acclaim, in autumn 2010 at Dulwich College – Antarctic explorer Ernest Shackleton's school. The show was at The Stables Gallery, Twickenham in 2011 and last April was at Discovery Point in Dundee - the resting place of Captain Scott's first exploration ship, the Discovery. Deep South was a key part of the museum’s commemoration of the Captain Scott centenary.

Deep South features Krys Leach’s luscious snowscapes and ingenious 3D interpretations of abandoned whaling stations, Tracy Myer's stunning photomontages and Beryl Hole's beautiful ceramics.  Libby Jones will exhibit her thought-provoking collection of hand made prints and installations.  And there are photographs by Frank Hole, Kristine Hannon and Joanne Wilkinson, which capture the thrill of Antarctic wildlife and the beauty of the landscape.

                                          Icebergs and Island: Krys Leach

There will be a raffle of original work by the artists to help raise funds for charities active in Antarctica.

Krys Leach said: “Going to Antarctica was a fantastic adventure for both Tracy and me. The adventure has continued with Deep South. It has been a privilege to work with the other artists and to be able to show our response to this beautiful and fragile part of the World.”

Arthur Lucas, Chairman Wymondham Arts Forum said: “This show will get the 2013 season off to a flying start.  Deep South represents our commitment to bringing the work of talented artists before the public, whatever their medium or the genre within which they work. This show combines a variety of styles and, for most of us, an exotic location, and will be of interest on many levels. The following 23 exhibitions in the season will present the work of other artists new to the gallery, as well as regular group shows and some solo shows by artists who have shown here before as part of a group. The gallery will reward regular visits throughout the year, but don’t miss this brilliant opening exhibition.”

Wymondham Arts Centre is at Becket’s Chapel, Church Street, Wymondham NR18 0PH, email

The Artists:

Krys Leach, painter and exhibition curator is best known for his seascapes and inspirational techniques. Krys has used the old whaling industry as his inspiration. Making 3D paintings from objets trouves, he has taken full opportunity to exercise his fondness for texture and innovative techniques to render the intricate tracery of the ice, soft snow and hard industry.

Tracy Myers printmaker and painter is interested in natural, historical and social themes. Tracy is fascinated by man's battle with the inhospitable world of Antarctica and brings to life moments from the history of the whalers. A gifted draftswoman, printmaker and designer, she combines all these skills with a deft touch in digital manipulation to produce images which highlight the stoic - and sometimes unpredictable - character needed to live and work in a brutal industry.

Kristine Hannon is a Belgian travel writer and photographer passionate about the Antarctic. Kristine has travelled the world as a professional photographer. At the end of her first Antarctic season, the company she worked for went bankrupt. With no salary and no way to get home, she stayed on the ship for about a month. Together with the 21 remaining sailors she crossed the Atlantic to Croatia were the ship was arrested. With a unique gift for capturing the moment, Kristine has brought home the awesome beauty of the Antarctic landscape: salmon pink sunsets over turquoise bergs, dark seas, glittering ice and poignant vignettes of compassion amid a relentless battle for survival.

Libby Jones printmaker. Her work includes installations and book works. Libby's has always been concerned with natural and scientific phenomena. She has taken this opportunity to address the environmental concerns of Antarctica head-on.  Libby has produced a number of collagraphic and screen prints, some provocative, but one centre-piece of the show is her inspiring iceberg installation complete with dripping water and ticking clocks.

Beryl Hole potter, teacher and round the world sailor. By contrast, Beryl has translated the sway of the Southern Ocean and the jagged ice into graceful pots and ceramics.  The bulk of her work is thrown, reduction fired stoneware and porcelain; the contrasting rough textures and smooth surfaces making a perfect expression of ice and stone.

Frank Hole photographer and round the world sailor. Frank worked in business for many years but has always been a keen photographer.  He and Beryl sailed around the world in their 35’ yacht and consequently became very involved in bird and marine life.  His visit to the Antarctic inspired him to photograph the unique environment and its wildlife. The photographs on show are a very small sample of his experiences.

Joanne Wilkinson animator, photographer and world traveller. Joanne has made a photographic study of the teeming animal and bird life of the region and has made these wonderful scenes available to a wider audience.

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

St Seraphim's Chapel Walsingham - Community Garden Developments

Walsingham W.I. visited St Seraphim's Orthodox Chapel, Little Walsingham, on Friday, March 1, to present a new garden seat to commemorate the Diamond Jubilee, for the chapel’s developing community garden.

Iris Bacon Walsingham W.I. President (front left) and Monica Smith committee member and (back left) Mary Inchbald Vice President and Rose Hannis Treasurer are pictured on the new seat in the chapel’s garden.

Iris Bacon said: “We donated new seats to the village and primary school to celebrate the Millennium and Golden Jubilee respectively. We wanted to support another project that will be of benefit to the community, so chose the garden at St Seraphim’s Chapel as the beneficiary of our seat to mark the Diamond Jubilee.”

Monica Smith (pictured below) from Walsingham W.I. also planted a Daphne to commemorate popular Little Walsingham resident, Daphne Tinsley who died last year.

The community garden is a natural space to complement the spirituality of St Seraphim’s Chapel and will provide a calming and natural reflective environment for use by pilgrims and the local community. A viewing hut has been established at the top of the garden overlooking Walsingham.

The provision of access to the garden is included in a Heritage Lottery Fun bid that will be submitted by St Seraphim’s Trust during the spring. The bid is applying for a grant to interpret and present to visitors the story of St Seraphim’s, a centre for traditional Orthodox Icon painting for more than 40 years, along with the building’s railway heritage. The chapel is located in the former Walsingham Railway Station.

Sylvia Batchelor, St Seraphim’s Trust Project Manager said: “The gift of the garden seat from Walsingham W.I. is a great boost to the development of the garden as a place for peace and calm and quiet reflection. We are steadily making progress in the garden, but would really like to recruit some regular volunteers, including a garden team leader to help speed up the process.”

For more information about St Seraphim’s Trust and the chapel see .