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FROM EXCITING EATERIES TO CAPTIVATING CULTURE & GREAT GIVEAWAYS, WE’RE STARTING 2022 WITH A BANG NEWYEAR! Here's to the
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Happy New Year!
f you’re looking to banish the January blues and get out and about this month, you’ve come to the right place. This issue is brimming with news of great gigs, thrilling theatre and amazing art exhibitions. We also highlight an array of exciting dining experiences heading our way, because – despite the battering the hospitality sector has faced over the past couple of years – the road ahead looks bright for the Cambridge food scene, as we discover in Ones to Watch. A regular fixture of the January issue, it introduces people and places about to make a splash – with this year’s round-up featuring a swish Sawston cafe, a burger pop-up from a pair of local legends, a hotly anticipated pub in Chesterton and lots more. Discover your new favourite eatery on page 45. If we can’t coax you out and you’re keen to embrace some time at home after December’s festivities, we’ve also got ideas for staying in. Local vegan cafe Stem & Glory serves up delicious recipes to try at home on page 40, while Charlotte has a handful of brilliant book recommendations on page 21. With a reimagining of Greek myth, a new Sherlock Holmes mystery and a maritime Gothic horror story, there’s truly something for all tastes! We’ve also got tasty tipples for Dry January, plus ideas for fun local classes to help you blitz your fitness goals in 2022. Happy New Year, and see you next month!
Cambridge Edition Magazine Bright Publishing Ltd, Bright House, 82 High Street, Sawston, Cambridgeshire CB22 3HJ, 01223 499450, cambsedition.co.uk • All rights reserved. Material contained in this publication may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without prior permission of the publishers. • Views expressed in this magazine are not necessarily those of Cambridge Edition or Bright Publishing Ltd, which do not accept any liability for loss or damage. • Every effort has been made to ensure all information is correct. • Cambridge Edition is a free publication that is distributed in Cambridge and the surrounding area. EDITORIAL Editor in chief Nicola Foley 01223 499459 email@example.com Editorial director Roger Payne Chief sub editor Alex Bell Sub editors MatthewWinney & Harriet Williams ADVERTISING Group ad manager Sam Scott-Smith 01223 499457 firstname.lastname@example.org Sales executive Hannah Gurney 01223 499463 email@example.com CONTRIBUTORS Mark Box, Lisa Clatworthy, Alex Fice, Charlotte Griffiths, Anna Taylor & Elisha Young DESIGN & PRODUCTION Senior designer Lucy Woolcomb firstname.lastname@example.org Ad production Man-Wai Wong MANAGING DIRECTORS Andy Brogden &Matt Pluck
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04 Starters Our favourite Instagram pics of the month, plus some brilliant buys from local indies 09 Culture Club Gigs, exhibitions, book recommendations and stunning snaps of the city’s residents 29Win a Spa Stay! Need some R&R in the new year? Check out this month’s giveaway from QHotels 31 Ten Ideas for Valentine’s Don’t leave it until the last minute – start planning now with our round-up of romantic V-Day dates! 38 Vegan Eats Celebrate Veganuary in style, with our guide to the tastiest plant-based food in the city 40 Recipes Also flying the vegan flag, Stem & Glory shares its story – and some delicious dishes
45 Ones toWatch From the Sawston cafe causing a stir, to the hottest Cambridge pub opening of 2022 52 Dry January There’s a new wave of tipples changing the face of alcohol-free drinking: we try some top picks 55 Elisha Eats Brighten up a dreary time of the year with this month ’s best seasonal treat: blood oranges 57 Find Your Fitness Match From boot camps to barre, there’s a workout class for everyone, whatever your goals 60 Run for Your Life We discover how the local running community is thriving, with the help of events like Parkrun 69 Home Edition Insight on the local property market, gardening tips, kitchen makeover inspo and more
Illustration by Hedzlynn Kamaruzzaman, inspired by a photo from Michael Sroka, aka @ax_thepond on Instagram.
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LOCAL L I FE
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LOCAL L I FE
THIS MONTH’S MUST-HAVES FROM LOCAL INDIES
1. Powder Anastasia scarf, £32, Lilac Rose Inject some summer hues into your winter wardrobe with this fabulously fluffy striped scarf 2. Linework face vase, £34.99, Angela Reed Picasso-style line drawings are all the rage in homewares right now: hop on board the trend with this vase from Angela Reed 3. Bjanka deco flowerpot, £28, Iris & Violet This unique pot, from city-centre favourite Iris & Violet, will make a chic receptacle for your plants 4. Cotton ribbed socks, £9.99, The Manor Gift Shop Give your feet a treat with these lilac knit socks, from Burwash Manor’s lovely gift shop 5. House of Disaster Frida Kahlo tropical bowl, £17.50, Podarok A tropical, Frida Kahlo-inspired design with a flash of gold, this jazzy bowl is perfect for serving party snacks 6. Voyage Layla teal cushion, £55, Angela Reed Make a statement on your sofa with this luxurious cushion, in a rich teal velvet 7. Eco-leather saddle bag, £119, Ark A butter-soft, perfectly proportioned bag, which is sure to become a wardrobe staple
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OPEN AIR New Hall Art Collection at Murray Edwards College is home to a huge collection of artwork by women, including this Barbara Hepworth piece
Ahead of the curve
DISCOVER A HIDDEN GEM OF THE CITY’S ART SCENE & LEARN HOW CREATIVITY IS THRIVING IN OUR COMMUNITY
© WILF SPELLER
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CULTURE CLUB Arts & Culture THE MUST-SEE EVENTS AROUND CAMBRIDGE THIS MONTH
COMEDY HITS FUNNY PEOPLE
Picture this: it’s a freezing-cold January evening, the decorations have been taken down for another year, the living room feels bare, your Christmas credit-card bills have come in, and the days seem to be shorter than ever. A recipe for the winter blues if ever there was one, but luckily for you we have the perfect antidote – an evening spent in the company of some of the UK’s best comedians! This month, the Corn Exchange will hand the mic to some industry giants. On 19 January, Jason Manford is back with Like Me , guaranteeing to please with cheeky wit and spot-on observational humour, while on 28 January, Katherine Ryan takes to the stage with her new live show, Missus , where she’ll deliver her hilarious, and sometimes savage, take on life and love. If you’re a fan of singalongs and uncanny celebrity impersonations, A Night of Songs & Laughter with Rob Brydon and his fabulous eight-piece band on 25 January could be just what the doctor ordered, or over at the Junction, Stephen K Amos offers his pithy perspective on 21st-century life in Before and Laughter on 19 January. Picking up the comedy baton on 20 January is Arabella Weir, with her show Does My Mum Loom Big in This? , while Lucy Porter rounds off a rip-roaring week of jokes with a three-finger salute to everything the Brownies couldn’t teach her in Be Prepared, on 21 January. Finally, Ahir Shah brings Dress – a show full of philosophical musings and candid humour –to the venue on 29 January. BANISH THE WINTER BLUES WITH SOME HEART-WARMING HILARITY
LAUGH IT UP The city has plenty to choose from when it comes to tickling your funny bone, including Stephen K Amos (above), Katherine Ryan (left) and Ahir Shah (below)
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SHOWSTOPPERS COMING UP AT THE ARTS THEATRE
From 19 to 22 January, Cambridge Arts Theatre welcomes Priscilla Queen of the Desert – a music-filled romp through the Australian outback starring drag queens Mitzi Mitosis and Felicia, and their trans friend Bernadette. The trio head off on the road trip of a lifetime, taking to the stage, making new friends – and encountering prejudice towards LGBTQ+ communities. A tale of friendship and resilience that celebrates queer identities and challenges intolerant attitudes, this exuberant production brims with dazzling costumes, flawless choreography and big tunes. With adult themes and language, it is better suited to audiences aged 14 and above. Tickets are £20-£35. From 26 to 29 January, don’t miss your chance to see the rising stars of Cambridge University’s performing talent in The Marlowe Society’s adaptation of A Midsummer Night’s Dream . A mischievous comedy underpinned by a dark tale of love triangles and mistaken identity, this classic Shakespearean epic weaves its way seamlessly from one absurdity to another. Jokes come thick and fast, and characters leave a lasting impression. Tickets start at £20. You can also catch award-winning actor AdamWoodyatt ( Eastenders ) in the stage adaptation of Peter James’ Looking Good Dead . This thriller proves that no good deed goes unpunished, when the discovery of an abandoned USB stick leads to a chain of unfortunate events. Detective Superintendent Roy Grace must come to the rescue, but will he keep his own demons at bay? Tickets £25-£45. cambridgeartstheatre.com
TOP OF THE CLASS
CAMBRIDGE SCULPTORWINS PRESTIGIOUS ART PRIZE Phil Cope has been awarded the East Anglia Regional Prize at the 2021 ING Discerning Eye exhibition for his sculpture 2020/11 , a piece which combines his distinctive woodwork with carved stone elements to juxtapose the natural materials. “I’m delighted not only to have been accepted for such a prestigious exhibition, but to win a prize for it was an incredible honour – not to mention a surprise!” he comments. Phil began pursuing his love of art in 2016, after retiring from a successful career in the Cambridge tech cluster. After nearly two years of virtual exhibitions, he’s looking forward to showing his work in local galleries. Follow @phil.cope.sculptor on Instagram for updates.
This month at the ADC MUSICAL NUMBER
From 6-15 January, strap yourself in for a night of musical theatre with Kipps – The New Half a Sixpence Musical . Based on the 1905 novel Kipps by HGWells, this classic show has been doing the rounds since the 60s. It was revived on the West End in 2016, with a new score by Stiles and Drewe. “The show is about an orphan boy born with nothing, who comes into a small fortune,” explains Claire Lucas, who plays the role of Aunt Bertha. “It follows his journey, as he figures out if money actually does equal happiness. In a world which has recently gone so wrong, this is a feel-good musical to remind the audience that happiness is found in the simplest of places!”
Tickets start at £11. adctheatre.com
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Cambridge Community Arts ALEX FICE MEETS THE LOCAL ORGANISATION IMPROVING WELLBEING AND CHANGING LIVES THROUGH A RANGE OF ARTISTIC DISCIPLINES Get creative
across the board. CCA also relies on the generosity of volunteers, many of whom have completed CCA courses in the past. They support the non-profit’s mission by helping lead tutors as volunteer teaching assistants, and some even go on to be lead tutors themselves. There are also opportunities to get involved with the strategic and financial direction of the organisation, by joining the Board of Trustees or the Community Advisory Panel. Another key activity of the charity is its Next Steps project, ensuring that students continue to progress towards their personal goals after the course has ended. “We offer one-to-one support and coaching for any of our learners after they’ve finished a course, helping them pursue further education, employment or training. We work with people to identify what they want to do and where they want to get to, and help them break that down and support them to take those steps.” For Beth, the number one priority is getting people to understand the importance of arts in our day-to-day lives, as a means of reducing stress and encouraging wellbeing. “Arts activities can be seen as a luxury,” she observes. “We’d say they’re a necessity. We should all find time in our lives to be creative.” The next programme of short courses begins the week of 31 January – apply now. camcommarts.org.uk
wellbeing through taking part in creative activities,” says Beth McCabe, CCA community learning manager. “In fact, if you talk to almost anyone about what they do to de-stress or unwind, chances are you’re going to find something creative. We want to provide opportunities for people to get together and do that. In particular, we want to welcome those who might feel socially excluded, have had difficult experiences with education or find the arts inaccessible in some way.” Since 2014, CCA has helped over 1,200 people develop a creative skill, most of whom have reported an improvement in contentment by the end of the course. The experience has often proved life-changing, helping them boost their confidence, make new friends and feel integrated within the wider community. At the end of each course, students are also encouraged to take part in a performance or exhibition that showcases their work. These events are sometimes held in public venues, such as Mill Road’s Edge Cafe, demonstrating just one of the ways in which CCA’s work feeds back into local life. The courses are taught by practitioners who are artists in their own right – from writers and music producers, to digital artists and photographers. All tutors receive ongoing support and training from CCA, reflecting the organisation’s commitment to best practice
Cambridge Community Arts (CCA) takes the belief that creativity helps people feel better, and uses this as the starting point to bring about a positive ripple effect in the local area. Founded in 2014 by Jane Rich, CCA is a charitable organisation that offers short- and long-term courses – online and in-person – in a range of artistic disciplines. These include digital art and design, music for performance, music production, drama, visual arts, photography and creative writing – supporting adults’ creative expression. “You don’t have to have a mental health problem to find improvements to your
UNLOCK A NEWYOU Unleash your creativity and increase your skills with CCA, which offers a supportive and inclusive atmosphere for learning
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Not to Miss SOME CULTURAL HIGHLIGHTS TO SUIT EVEN THE MOST DISCERNING CRITIC
LATE AT KETTLE’S YARD: SUTAPA BISWAS 28 January, 6-9pm, Kettle’s Yard, £5 Explore Sutapa Biswas: Lumen from a new perspective at Kettle’s Yard’s late-night opening. Attendees will be invited to reflect on the themes that underpin Biswas’ work. There will also be poetry readings, drinks and a live DJ set.
THE BRASS FUNKEYS 28 January, 7pm, Cambridge Junction, £17 Prepare to be blown away by this talented eight- piece brass band, with an evening of soul, jazz and funk! Originally from London, the Brass Funkeys are Cambridge favourites, but have entertained crowds across the UK and Europe with their polished, New Orleans-inspired repertoire.
ANIMAL AFTERLIVES Until 30 January, Museum of Zoology, free Discover this intriguing photography exhibition, which explores taxidermy as a means of capturing life after death. Displayed throughout the Museum of Zoology, the series showcases a range of photographic methods and illuminates the lives of animals that might have been forgotten.
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From street food to great shopping, there’s much to enjoy on a day trip to our north Essex neighbour, Saffron Walden – and the buildings that make up this medieval market town are an attraction in their own right. Take a wander through the streets and you’ll discover structures steeped in history at every turn, including St Mary’s Church. Lying at the heart of the town, this grand place of worship measures 183 feet in length, boasting an ornate 193-foot spire, which makes it the biggest church in the whole of Essex. Inside, there’s a wonderful organ with spectacular Trompeta Real pipes, and some fine stained-glass windows to admire. The timber-framed Cross Keys pub is a jewel in the town’s crown, offering Elizabethan architecture and delicious food, while another watering hole – The Sun Inn – features intricate pargeting. If you’re a fan of elaborate plasterwork, mosey down Castle The town withtales to tell SaffronWalden
DIVINE The impressive spire of St Mary’s Church was built in the year 1832
Street, where you’ll find charmingly higgledy-piggledy, sorbet-coloured Tudor buildings galore. The Eight Bells, now managed by the Chestnut Group (Cambridge residents will know them from Grantchester’s The Rupert Brooke), is another beautifully preserved medieval building. Its fairy-lit winter tipi is a rather more recent addition, but a lovely spot for a cosy meal! The ruins of Walden Castle offer another slice of history – and don’t miss the nearby museum, which holds an ethnographic collection of national importance. Featuring everything frommammoth tusks to mummies,
it was one of the first purpose-built museums in the country. Fancy stepping into your own period drama? Pay a visit to Audley End House and Gardens, on the outskirts of Saffron Walden. It’s no exaggeration to describe this Jacobean country house as one of England’s grandest mansions, and the Capability Brown-designed gardens are a delight to discover. If you’re feeling inspired to pay the town a visit, head to the tourism information centre’s website at visitsaffronwalden.gov.uk, where you can find loads of info and download guides, maps and more.
YOU’LL DISCOVER STRUCTURES STEEPED IN HISTORY
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TALENTED Dr Amy Jeffs (left) is shortlisted, along with other local writers
MYSTERY JETS 11 APRIL, 7PM, CAMBRIDGE JUNCTION, £19.50 Mystery Jets will be returning to the Junction in April for an exhilarating night of indie pop and psychedelic rock.
© LUCY MCGRATH
GOLDFRAPP 11 APRIL, 7.30PM, CORN EXCHANGE, £38-£40.50 Also in April, the duo Goldfrapp will be taking to the stage at the Corn Exchange, to perform iconic hits like Ooh La La and Lovely Head . Tickets on sale from 10March.
EYES ON THE PRIZE
SHORTLIST SUCCESS FOR CAMBRIDGE AUTHORS
Demonstrating once again that our city is a hotbed of literary talent, three works by Cambridge writers are in the running for this year’s prestigious Waterstones Book of the Year. First up is heartfelt children’s offering Julia and the Shark by Kiran Millwood Hargrave and Tom de Freston, who met in 2009 at the University of Cambridge. The couple explain that the book was “created in a pandemic, in the wake of personal losses – so we wanted it to be brimful of as much hope, wonder, light and love as we could muster”. Also shortlisted is Dr Amy Jeffs, who studied at Cambridge Uni and subsequently gained her PhD in art history from Corpus Christi. In her illustrated mythology, Storyland , she draws on her extensive knowledge of medieval art and literature to revive Britain’s legends and celebrate the “narrative relationship with the landscape that’s at least as old as the Middle Ages, and the possibility that we might benefit from that relationship by expressing it anew”. Finally, Jonathan Drori CBE – a trustee of the Cambridge Science Centre and board member at Cambridge University Botanic Garden – gets a nod for his Around the World in 80 Plants . Keep an eye out for these works by local authors next time you’re browsing the shelves at Waterstones!
CAMBRIDGE FOLK FESTIVAL 28-31 JULY, CHERRY HINTON HALL, DAY TICKETS: £31-£78.28, WEEKEND: £187.46 One of the UK’s best folk festivals is back – packed with music, workshops and more.
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ON THE MAP
NewHall Art Collection THE NEW HALL ART COLLECTION HAS LONG BEEN A HIDDEN GEM OF CAMBRIDGE’S CONTEMPORARY ART SCENE, BUT NOW IT’S STEPPING INTO THE LIMELIGHT TO REACH A WIDER AUDIENCE THAN EVER BEFORE, FINDS ALEX FICE
“When museums and galleries started to reopen, we received lots of messages from people asking when we would be open to the public again, which I think shows the Collection’s importance to people – locals and visitors, as well as students at Murray Edwards. “In times of crisis, people always flock to see art as a way of seeking comfort and making sense of the world. One of the tragedies of the pandemic is that art was inaccessible to people, unless it was on their sitting room walls or computer screens. I’m so glad that we’re now able to be a place for people to come together and experience art again.” As museums and galleries around the world steer their way through challenging times, an important aim for Harriet and Naomi is to grow a wider awareness of the Collection. A big breakthrough in this regard has been the opportunity to participate in the London Art Fair, from 19-23 January, as the Fair’s official museum partner. The collaboration will ensure that the New Hall Art Collection reaches a greater audience, putting it firmly on the map – not just in Cambridge, but on the global stage. “We are delighted to be the London Art Fair’s museum partner this year, and showcase works from the Collection to new audiences,” enthuses Naomi. “Our display focuses on the themes of myth- making and self-fashioning, and features works by over 20 artists, including Maggi Hambling, Miriam Schapiro and Tracey Emin. The pieces in the exhibit – which include paintings, photographs, prints, textiles and ceramics – engage in evocative storytelling and play with traditional notions of femininity.” Throughout 2022, Murray Edwards College will also be hosting the temporary exhibition What Lies Beneath: Women, Politics, Textiles from February to August. The display will explore how, in the last few decades, women artists have employed and experimented with craft practices – making powerful statements about gender, race, class and their place in the world. “We will also be staging performances by the artists Emily Perry and Linda Karshan, so there is lots to look forward to!” art.newhall.cam.ac.uk
The so-called ‘town and gown’ divide is present in most university cities, but in Cambridge it’s especially palpable. You may be surprised to discover, however, that the key to unlocking the door between these two worlds is within your grasp – you just have to know where to look. Though some college gates are notoriously firmly shut to the public, the doors of Murray Edwards College are open and ready to welcome visitors to see a very special display. The New Hall Art Collection – which recalls the college’s original name – is Europe’s largest collection of work by women artists, featuring luminaries such as Paula Rego, Maggi Hambling, Barbara Hepworth and Lubaina Himid. Rejecting convention, the artworks are housed not in a single gallery space, but positioned throughout the college halls, and the backdrop – the buildings of Murray Edwards College – constitute an artwork in their own right. They were designed by Chamberlin, Powell and Bon in the 60s as a ‘manifesto for the education of women’, building the idea of female empowerment into the very bricks and mortar of this institution – Cambridge University’s third women-only college. How the artworks are curated is fundamental to the experience for visitors and resident students of the college, says assistant curator Naomi Polonsky, who undertook an important rehang of the works during the pandemic with head curator Harriet Loffler. “Our doors were closed and our programming was on hold, so we had the time to properly consider how to curate the spaces,” she says. “We have highlighted key works from the Collection by artists such as Alexis Hunter and Chantal Joffe, and created an archival display with documents important to the founding of the Collection. One of the central walkways is dedicated to works of portraiture and self-portraiture, while the bar area is curated as a ‘constellation’ around Rose Wylie’s atmospheric Billie Piper (A Combo Painting) .” The pandemic deprived us of encounters with art and made everyone consider the significance of the arts and their value in our lives – something which has led to a swell of support, says Naomi.
HISTORIC The Collection was founded in 1986, following the acquisition of Mary Kelly’s Extase series
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LUCY VAN PELT
Since her Peanuts debut in 1952, Lucy Van Pelt has become recognised as one of the most famous – and formidable – characters of the cartoon world. Her unwavering self- belief and unapologetic style provide the perfect counterbalance to protagonist Charlie Brown’s self-doubt and anxious nature; with the interactions between the duo shedding light on many pre-teen preoccupations. The stories resonated with readers around the world, earning the beloved comic strip series a reputation as a timeless classic. Lucy Van Pelt: Director of Everything celebrates the enduring legacy of the character and the work of series creator Charles M. Schulz, showcasing a selection of original comic strips, objects and line art from the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center. It also offers a chance to see photographs of the artist throughout his life. Peanuts began in 1950 and ran for half a century, during which time Charles M. Schulz created 17,897 daily and Sunday strips. Its continued success owes much to its consistent format, complex characters and ability to combine serious themes with a good dose of humour. You can find the display at the Heong Gallery, nestled just within the gates of Downing College, until 6 February. THE HEONG GALLERY’S LATEST EXHIBITION SHINES A LIGHT ON ONE OF THE LEADING LADIES OF THE MUCH-LOVED PEANUTS COMIC STRIP SERIES Director of Everything
© CHARLES M. SCHULZ MUSEUM AND RESEARCH CENTER
NOSTALGIC IMAGES Charles M. Schulz sitting behind his drafting table working on a Peanuts strip, 1969 (top); Peanut strip (middle); Charles M. Schulz poses at a drawing table with his left arm resting along the edge of a page of four ‘Li’l Folks’ panels, 1948 (bottom) – all courtesy of the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center. ‘Lucy for First Lady’ postcard, 1970 – courtesy of the Hallmark Archives, Hallmark Cards, Inc., Kansas City, Missouri, US (left)
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ARTS & CULTURE
Book Club CAMBRIDGE EDITION MYSTERIES, MYTHS AND MOTHERHOOD ALL FEATURE IN THIS MONTH’S LIST OF PAGE-TURNERS
WORDS BY CHARLOTTE GRIFFITHS
The Three Locks BY BONNIE MACBIRD
Footbridge after a heavy rainstorm will be well aware of the awesome thundering power of the waterway, and the scene where a character meets their end in the murky waters, hair entangled in the Lock’s mechanism, is shudderingly well drawn. Equally disturbing is the appearance in the plot of the Spinning House, Cambridge University’s self-policed ‘house of correction’ which imprisoned (without trial) young women accused of heinous crimes, including ‘walking with members of the university’ – don’t research the Spinning House unless you’re prepared to have your outrage levels heightened considerably. An ideal winter night read, The Three Locks will no doubt leave you wanting to pick up MacBird’s other full- length Sherlock novels: TV adaptations are surely not too far away...
The game’s afoot! This splendid romp of a novel is packed with twists and turns, effortlessly capturing the chaotic energy of Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes and his anchorman, Dr John Watson. It’s the latest Sherlock novel from Bonnie MacBird, and her background in screenwriting is extremely apparent throughout the book. Perfectly paced to keep you guessing and turning pages, The Three Locks leads the duo from backstage at illusionist performances in London to the depths of the old Cavendish Laboratory, where Holmes always ‘dreamed of studying’ – crossing paths with professional magicians, university professors, pawnshop owners, physicists, archers, clergymen and a huge host of other supporting characters. Many sites around our city star in the pages: anyone who’s walked over Jesus Lock
ELEMENTARY The cinematic writing of Bonnie Macbird’s work is owed to her long career in Hollywood, including as the original writer of 1982 film Tron
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ARTS & CULTURE ELEKTRA BY JENNIFER SAINT Hot on the heels of her smash-hit Ariadne comes Elektra , the newest novel from Jennifer Saint, who has pleasingly stuck to re-examining Greek legend for her source material. This time, the book follows the thoughts of a trio of mythical women: Clytemnestra, the sister of Helen and wife of warmongering king Agamemnon; her daughter, the eponymous Elektra; and Cassandra, doomed princess of Troy. In turn, these three tell the stories of their lives and choices running up to, and after, the Trojan Wars. It’s not really a spoiler to mention plot elements written about by ancient Greeks, but Saint’s masterful retelling shines new light on these characters. The depiction of Cassandra’s ‘madness’ is heart-rending, and leaves you feeling guilty for accepting her diagnosis as ‘insane’ in previous
interpretations. Iphigenia’s sacrifice – told from the perspective of her mother Clytemnestra, who is under the impression that her daughter is about to be married, not murdered – is beyond heartbreaking. It starkly depicts the searing, unthinkable horror of the scene – which rolls on, unstoppably, into Elektra’s understandable fury at her mother’s subsequent actions. It’s as if Saint extends a hand to each of these snarling characters, cornered by their fates, enabling them to tell their story, point at their hurt and explain why they did what they did: after all, aren’t we all heroes in our own narratives? If you’re a fan of the movement to re-examine myth, this will no doubt already be on your to-read pile. If you’re new to this world, Saint’s book is a superb point from which to strike out on your own literary odyssey.
GIVE IT A GO Upping the number of books you read can be an enjoyable and enlightening New Year’s resolution – these are some wonderful options to start with
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ARTS & CULTURE
BY LUCY MANGAN AreWe Having Fun Yet?
It feels lazy to describe this novel as Bridget Jones meets Motherland , but the narrator Liz bears so much resemblance to both iconic representations of contemporary womanhood that it’s hard not to mention. And it’s no bad thing! This is a superb book, tracking a year from January to January in the life of London-based Liz, and her attempts to navigate modern existence peacefully. But this aim is constantly thwarted by the demands of her husband and two children, and of course her relationships with other parents, which Liz describes as ‘ Game of Thrones without the bloodshed. ’ “You think you’re in a gang,” she states, bleakly: “You think that the experience of creating and successfully expelling via whatever means possible an actual new human life from within would form some kind of universal unbreakable bond between you – and then, too late, you realise you’re not.” Her friends, however, provide support, who then get it back in spades when facing their own crises – including errant husbands, heartbroken babysitters and the annual challenge of World Book Day. It’s a fantastic read, wickedly sharp and gloriously funny. RAVE REVIEWS Lucy Mangan, noted for her Guardian column, has received acclaim for her first adult novel – with its comedy of manners, style and wry observations on motherhood
OurWives Under The Sea BY JULIA ARMFIELD
Captivating from the very first lines, this genre-defying novel tells the story of Miri and Leah – a married couple living in London, as they try to re-enter normal life after oceanographer Leah’s recent expedition beneath the waves. The ambiguously named Centre, which ran the mission, is proving less than forthcoming with follow-up support, leaving Miri adrift as she tries to cope with her wife’s strange and unsettling needs, which have been fundamentally altered by her underwater experiences. The slow drip of information as the book descends to the depths leaves much for the reader to piece together, adding to the growing sense of unease and, in parts, hand-to- mouth horror. The almost Gothic nature of Leah’s worsening, mysterious condition is perfectly set against everyday domestic matters, such as the neighbour’s loud television, amusing articles in the newspaper, or memories of the couple’s easy-going happinesses in the past. Staggeringly beautifully written, Armfield’s prose – like the deepest, most unexplored parts of the ocean – looks sparse at first, but is teeming with life when you let it wash over you. This poetic musing on love, loss and grief is mesmerisingly romantic, in the oldest, truest sense of the word. By the time the book resurfaces, you’re left bereft, both heartbroken for the lovers and simultaneously awestruck at nature’s unknowable vastness, depicted so magnificently in this tiny, intimate tale of two women and their unbounded love for each other.
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Cambridge PHOTOGRAPHER MARK BOX SHARES SOME OF HIS FAVOURITE PORTRAITS FROM THE STREETS OF CAMBRIDGE THIS MONTH – CAN YOU SPOT ANYONE YOU KNOW?
This glamorous human knew exactly how to get spotted! How could I resist that red beret, sheepskin coat and eclectic fashion style?
Humans of Cambridge is an Instagram photoblog by local photographer Mark Box. It began as a ABOUT THE PROJECT lockdown project and has turned into a sensation, featuring an ever-growing number of Cambridge’s colourful characters on the @humanofcambridge grid. Mark is out most days snapping, and can usually be found in the Market Square, on King’s Parade, Burrell’s Walk and Garret Hostel Bridge – your best bet for being papped is to head out around lunchtime wearing something suitably eye-catching!
One of my personal favourites and an Instagram hit, say hello to Marina. Such a sweet lady – and what’s not to love about that amazing cat jumper?
I was at Anglia Ruskin University being filmed for an upcoming mini documentary when I came across this gallant chap on the college grounds... who said chivalry was dead? (Poet and one-time Cambridge resident Lord Byron, in fact – he claimed that the novel Don Quixote had killed it!)
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This human goes by the name of Jule. Originally from Germany, I stopped her when we were filming for the HOC short documentary. She was more surprised I wanted to take her portrait than anything else. Good combination of colours – I really liked this outfit, especially with the shell necklace.
I met this charming couple on my usual walk down Garret Hostel Lane. It was either her blue hair that caught my eye, or was it the purple scarf he wore? No wait, it was both!
You just gotta love Felipe’s hair! We were battling the wind when we got lucky with this shot, and that Toronto Raptors top rocks! Also, spot the cool flower tattoo.
Such vibes from this smiley human! Totally dig the vibrant colours and faux leopard print top adorned with Louis Vuitton accessories!
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ADVERT I SEMENT FEATURE
WHAT IS LOVE
CAMBRIDGE? Love Cambridge is the brand developed by Cambridge Business Improvement District (BID) to deliver a range of events and projects that animate and entertain our city. Offerings include the Love Cambridge Gift Card, open-air cinema nights, Wimbledon screenings, magazines, maps and more. Visit love-cambridge.com or @LoveCambridge_ on socials. Returning for a second year, Cambridge Live’s Window Wanderland event will bring colour and light to the city streets this month. Taking place from 10 to 23 January, WindowWanderland invites people with access to a street- facing window to transform them into scenes of delight. The initiative is a national project, with different towns and cities around the UK holding festivals throughout the year, and the organisers encourage participants to let their imaginations run wild with designs and materials. For more information, and to learn how you can participate and spread the word in your neighbourhood, visit cambridgelive.org.uk/city- events/window-wanderland. The project is generously supported by Arm, Vodafone, Cambridge BID and the Welcome Back Fund. WINDOW WANDERLAND
MEET THE BID TEAM OF CITY AMBASSADORS Say hello to our professional and passionate City Ambassadors, who are available within the city centre every day of the year to help, advise and guide around Cambridge. The Ambassadors welcome nearly 60,000 visitors to Cambridge every single year, answering queries and giving out free maps.
Taj is the head of the Cambridge City Ambassador team: a polyglot who speaks eight languages, with an academic background and avid interest in history, social linguistics, anthropology and sustainable tourism. Taj started his professional journey as a trekking tour guide to the great Hindu Kush Himalayas, and had travelled, studied and worked in several countries before falling in love with Cambridge. He says: “Imagine a place where you can meet visitors from every corner of the earth! Culturally and linguistically, Cambridge is probably the most diverse visitor destination in the world. Welcoming and directing such a varied pool of visitors makes this job very special, unusual and interesting. I am in love with the city, it’s a magical place to be – a solitary walk along the River Cam is going to melt your heart.’’
Haydn comes from a background of creative writing and journalism, which, by his own admission, can often be an insular pastime. Having gravitated towards roles that provide help and support to others, becoming a City Ambassador was an obvious choice. His favourite thing about Cambridge is the people, of course. “For me, Cambridge has always stood apart from other towns and cities around the world, and for a few simple reasons. Firstly, the sheer amount of history and endeavour scrawled on every street and present in every college is testament to the town’s immense importance. I’m not just talking about science and literature, either, but also the performing arts world of alfresco Shakespeare recitals, or the exemplary satire that’s consistently pumped out by Cambridge Footlights – to name just a couple. It is far more than the sum of its parts, and a visit is essential. When you do, the City Ambassadors are here to help.”
Sacha has a background in anthropology – and a lot of experience with guided tours, as she used to work all over England and parts of Europe showing people around! Her favourite thing about Cambridge is how unique it is compared to most cities: the history, culture and combination of everything that has shaped what it is today – it’s the perfect place to explore without the rush! “As a city of culture in all respects, Cambridge represents the quintessential heritage, knowledge and community of Britain. I feel honoured to have the opportunity to share my love for Cambridge with both locals and visitors alike, while I discover new, hidden corners of the city every day.”
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ESCAPE THE JANUARY BLUES WITH AN ALL-EXPENSES-PAID STAY AT ONE OF THE QHOTELS COLLECTION’S BEAUTIFUL RETREATS WIN A MAGICAL MINIBREAK!
Proudly unique and bursting with character, The QHotels Collection is a selection of 21 hotels and resorts across the UK. All venues offer a taste of something different, from secluded rural hideaways to sophisticated city hotspots – and everything in between. For a full list of The QHotels Collection spas, visit qhotels.co.uk/our-spas ABOUT THE QHOTELS COLLECTION
leisure spa and golf resort in the rolling hills of Yorkshire. To help relax, you and your guest will be treated to a sumptuous treatment at the in-house spa. Take your pick from pampering facials, soothing massages and deluxe beauty treatments – you’ll be in safe hands with The QHotels Collection’s expert therapists. As well as tranquillity, there’s delicious food and drink to be savoured, with each hotel in the collection packing a culinary punch in its own distinctive way. From AA Rosette restaurants to opulent champagne bars, our lucky winner will be treated to a gourmet wining and dining experience. To be in with a chance of winning this fantastic prize, visit cambsedition.co.uk to enter and view the T&Cs.
eady to relax, recharge and recuperate? We’ve teamed up with The QHotels Collection to give a lucky reader an exclusive staycation
for two at a spa hotel of their choosing. The prize up for grabs is an incredible weekend away, complete with indulgent dinner, luxurious treatments and a hearty breakfast. With 17 gorgeous spa hotels across the UK to choose from, you’ll be spoilt for choice. Leave your worries behind at historic hideaway Slaley Hall – nestled deep in the serene north- east landscape – or maybe choose to enjoy a rural escape at Crewe Hall, set inside stunning grounds in the peaceful Cheshire countryside. There’s also Norton Park, an elegant, 16th- century manor house outside Winchester – as well as the spectacular Oulton Hall, a gorgeous
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VALENT INE ’ S DAY
for Valentine’s Day in Cambridge Ten ideas WHEN IT COMES TO ROMANCE, THE CITY HAS PLENTY TO OFFER. CHECK OUT THE BEST PLACES TO TREAT A LOVED ONE – OR YOURSELF
WORDS BY ALEX FICE
1: VALENTINE’S DAY WITH THE TRADITIONAL PUNTING COMPANY For a picturesque celebration, we recommend a romantic punt tour along the Cambridge College Backs with the Traditional Punting Company. Round off your trip with a candlelit drink and a bite to eat at Cafe Foy, where you’ll enjoy 20% off included with your ticket. Booking in advance is a must! 2: ROMEO AND JULIET AT THE ARTS PICTUREHOUSE Shakespeare’s classic tale of star-crossed lovers may not have a happy ending, but if ever there was an ode to the power of love, then this is it. Settle in for a night of passion at the Arts Picturehouse with this ballet adaptation of Romeo and Juliet , or keep your eyes peeled for other Valentine’s Day viewings closer to the time. HIDDEN ROOMS If you’re looking for love, don’t miss SpeedDater’s Lock & Key party at the Hidden Rooms cocktail lounge in Cambridge on 11 February. In one room you’ll get to meet lots of singles during an innovative icebreaker, while next door there’s the chance to take part in some good, old-fashioned speed dating! Book your tickets online for £22.15. 4: COCKTAILS AND DINNER AT THE FELLOWS HOUSE The Fellows House will provide a delicious set menu for Valentine’s Day in its sleek 3: SPEED DATING AT and stylish restaurant, or why not pop in for a cocktail at its elegant bar? Those staying at the hotel over the weekend can also enjoy spa treats including massages, making for the ultimate relaxing minibreak. 5: TITCHWELL MANOR Need a bit of escapism? Head over to Titchwell Manor in Norfolk for dinner or an overnight staycation. The Manor is a stone’s throw from the stunning North Norfolk coast, offering stylish rooms and
MATCHMAKER Make your way over to Hidden Rooms to mingle with city singles
fine dining. You’ll be able to sample the food of new head chef Oliver Bacon-Hilton, too, who’ll be drawing from his experience working at Michelin-starred restaurants to introduce some exciting dishes. 6: BEAUTIFUL BLOOMS FROM THE MANOR FLORIST You can’t go far wrong with a magnificent bunch of flowers, and the Manor Florist creates sensational seasonal bouquets using the freshest flora for around £38. Pop into the local shop at Burwash Manor Barns in Barton, or order online. Harry Specters goes above and beyond your average chocolate box, with artful designs and incredible flavours. Not only that, but the chocolatier champions opportunities for people with autism, who are involved with making, packaging and selling the delicious confections. 7: CHOCOLATES FROM HARRY SPECTERS 8: QUEER VALENTINES AT THE JUNCTION The Kite Trust is back with its annual variety show fundraiser, Queer Valentines ,
at the Junction on 10 February. There will be a selection of cabaret, drag, music and comedy, plus Valentine’s games and a DJ set to get you in the mood for love. Ticket proceeds help The Kite Trust to support young LGBTQ+ people across Cambridgeshire and beyond. 9: A ROMANTIC WALK IN THE BOTANIC GARDEN Take a stroll around the University of Cambridge’s delightful Botanic Garden. At this time of year, there’ll be lots of snowdrops in bloom – hinting that spring is around the corner! Follow the snowdrop trail, explore the stunning, expansive glasshouses and enjoy a warming drink at the Garden Cafe. 10: COUPLE’S SPA RETREAT AT QUY MILL Quy Mill is offering a special Valentine’s Day package for £559, comprising a two- night stay, with a bottle of champagne on arrival, four-course dinner, plus full English breakfast included. You’ll each be treated to a 30-minute spa treatment or aromatherapy bath, and are free to use the hotel’s health club throughout your stay.
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ADVERT I SEMENT FEATURE
FOUR REASONS TO FALL IN LOVE WITH NORTHSTOWE With excellent transport links and fantastic facilities, this blossoming town has much to offer for homebuyers
et eight miles north of Cambridge city centre, Northstowe is a sustainable town, located between the villages of Oakington and
well-connected, with loads of bike and walking routes – and a guided busway (you’ll never be stuck in traffic). Plus, it’s nine minutes from the nearest A14 junction. Read our commuter’s guide to Northstowe at housebyurbansplash.co.uk to find out more! 2. LIFESTYLE The town was designed for the promotion of physical and mental wellbeing, and healthier lifestyles. Yes, transport links to buzzing, nearby towns and cities are fantastic – but with everything that’s there on your doorstep, you can have the best of both worlds. Inholm was created in the most desirable quarter of Northstowe – on the peninsula, just by the water parks, surrounded by the rolling Cambridgeshire Fens and school playing fields.
Longstanton. Nestled within this new neighbourhood, just by the water parks, is Inholm: an architect-designed collection of award-winning homes. They’re big, beautiful and easy to fall in love with – much like the town itself ! If you’ve not had the pleasure of visiting yet, here are four reasons to find your home at Northstowe… 1. LOCATION Northstowe is a great commuter town if you work in Cambridge or London. You can get to the former’s city centre in approximately 20 minutes, and from Cambridge to London King’s Cross within 50 minutes. No matter your preferred method of transportation, Northstowe is
It’s the perfect place for morning jogs before work, lunchtime strolls with friends and colleagues, after-school play, dog walks and easy Sunday afternoons with family. 3. EDUCATION Northstowe is home to an excellent range of schools, that cover every age group. Among these are Pathfinder Northstowe, a C of E primary school; Martin Bacon Academy, an area special school for ages three to 19; and Northstowe Secondary College, the local secondary
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school, located just up the road from Inholm. Plus, there are plans to open a sixth form in 2024. NSC is dedicated to enriching the local community by sharing its state-of-the-art facilities, including a football pitch, hockey pitch, tennis courts, netball courts, sports hall, playing fields, dance and yoga studios, theatre – and a future cafe, gym and swimming pool. 4. COMMUNITY More than just a town, Northstowe is a community with a heart. It’s full of active, neighbourly people who have a passion for bringing everybody together. As well as the facilities, groups and classes open to residents at NSC, you’ll be able to enjoy many other aspects of Northstowe life. The town is home to an unmissable food and drink scene organised by local group Northstowe Foodies. You can join Northstowe Horticultural Association, partake in Northstowe Running Festival, and watch your children make friends while learning a new skill at martial arts club, Tiny Tigers – at the Northstowe Community Wing. Find out more at housebyurbansplash. co.uk. To book a show home viewing, get in touch with our friendly sales consultant Brandon on 01223 867000, or via inholm@ housebyurbansplash.co.uk
HAVE A LOOK AROUND Show homes open Thursday to Monday at Inholm, a House by Urban Splash neighbourhood. Brand-new homes for early adopters, find your place today
YOU CAN HAVE THE BEST OF BOTH WORLDS
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ADVERT I SEMENT FEATURE
The team behind local communications agency KUCO look back on their highlights of 2021 THE CAMBRIDGE CONNECTION
A YEAR OF SURPRISES Through a tough year for the hospitality sector, we’ve been privileged to witness the most inspiring resilience from local businesses. Grit and determination has meant our local food and drink scene has continued to rise, as business owners hunkered down and refocussed their business models towards long-term success. It’s been a year of constant shifting, making new connections and forging ahead. As a company, we’ve been called up to work the local angle for international hotel launches, and approached by national brands looking to expand into the city and link to the Cambridge community. Here are some of the highlights from KUCO’s year gone by… The Wine Rooms on Hills Road launched as a destination wine shop with a modern paired menu earlier this year. This bright glimmer opposite the Botanic Garden continues to inspire us with weekly tastings, seasonal food and a passion for all things wine. Meanwhile, The Old Bridge Hotel in Huntingdon continued to shine, awarded Best Value Wine List in Europe in The World of Fine Wine magazine’s awards. This accolade is no surprise to regular diners, with Master of Wine John Hoskins at the helm. His commitment to quality, coupled with staff training and development, holds the key to 25 years of success. Set on a hilltop in Bourn, PAUS. (pronounced ‘pause’) has risen again this year. Reopening in October with a vastly expanded site, this bathing and breathing space is fast becoming a flagship destination in the region. Its secluded lakeside sauna and 1000m sensory trail offer the perfect opportunity to refocus and find balance in 2022 – and far beyond. In a year of barriers and hurdles, expansion was for the brave. The team behind NOVI exemplified everything 2021 needed, when they opened KOTA at Eddington in September. They’ve adapted
REBOUND Stir opened a Histon site (below) and PAUS. expanded (middle); KUCO is helping brands get the message out (bottom)
their model with a strong focus on the kitchen, backed up by a botanical bar. As public appetite for in-person events grew, experiential activation took centre stage. The city’s most popular experience (as rated by Tripadvisor!) Cambridge Gin Lab took to the river, partnering with Rutherford’s to launch a branded punt. In this most quintessentially Cambridge collaboration, sunny gin-tasting sessions morphed into steaming ‘hottail’ trips, as colder climes took hold. CB4’s much-loved bakery and coffee shop Stir Cambridge opened a second site in Histon. Where cafe culture meets community, this village spot is bustling already, and firmly established as a north Cambridge darling. Look out for a third site at Chesterton Mill, opening early 2022!
For more from the KUCO team follow @kuco.comms on social or visit kuco.agency
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