Saturday, 19 January 2019

The Growth Hub Cirencester Embrace the New Year

Centre manager Yesim Nicholson
Happy New Year from the Growth Hub

As we move into 2019, now is an excellent time for business owners to make plans for the year ahead. At the same time, there are factors which business owners need to be aware of and to accommodate in their business planning.

For example, in April, we see the introduction of Making Tax Digital – the government’s initiative to digitalise the taxation system, which in this first phase will affect VAT returns; we have political uncertainty affecting the markets, with Brexit dominating the news agenda; and unemployment is low, so businesses looking for new staff need to be creative in the way they seek and retain employees.

At the Growth Hub, the mood is very optimistic. The office space we have available for rent is almost full and we have a growing number of business people using our extensive co-working space, either by taking out a membership or on a pay-as-you-go basis.

We are also now offering half-day passes, as we realise many people – particularly working parents - can’t come to the Hub for the whole day, and can only manage a few hours between drop-off and pick-up.

The Growth Hub, next to the Royal Agricultural University, offers business support to growing Gloucestershire businesses. Part of the wider Gloucestershire Growth Hub network, Cirencester offers a range of fully funded business support services, including one-to-one business support, workshops and events.
Mindfulness with Hilary Norris Evans
Coming up in January are workshops on: helping your business to become a great place to work, on January 9; ‘How to get more done in less time’, on January 16; the second Mum and Dad Preneur networking meeting, on January 22; successful recruitment, on January 23; and on January 30 an ‘Introduction to business insurance’.

For more information about Cirencester Growth Hub, visit, email the friendly team at or call 01285 889850.

Centre Manager Yesim Nicholson pictured

Thursday, 10 January 2019

Discover The Cirencester Scene-Puts Your Name In 12,000 Homes

Advertise With the Cirencester Scene-12 Years of Regular Delivery

Over 130 issues in print.
Friendly, down to earth and cost effective. Find out more.

This well established Cirencester based local magazine was re-launched in 2007 in the midst of the recession, and has gone from strength to strength ever since. It is well loved by the community and highly regarded as the go-to magazine both for local news and its extensive What’s On events listings.

As each magazine is well read and often held on to for the whole month, it means that your advertisements get seen! The Cirencester Scene Magazine is delivered monthly to 12,000 homes and businesses in Cirencester and surrounding villages.

Over the years, the Cirencester Scene has produced nearly 120 issues and had over 700 individual advertisers. During that time, some advertisers have appeared in every issue! This is a great result and shows the good effect of repeat advertising.

We have advertising at prices to suit different budgets, starting with our Noticeboard ads from as little as £20 a month with a block booking of 6 months. This is ideal as an ongoing cost effective presence for tradespeople! We also have a variety of advertising packages that not only include discounts, but also complimentary editorial space for our
businesses to promote themselves.

Not only does the Cirencester Scene offer advertising, but we give space to local news, articles and community promotions too. As well as this, local charities, community groups and clubs are offered substantially reduced rates to advertise their events.

Alongside our print presence, we also have a wide Social Media reach with over 2600 local followers on Twitter and 1000+ likes on Facebook. This means when we post an article on our blog we have a wide local reach too!

Contact us Now!
Your business can benefit by advertising with the Cirencester Scene. Simply call us now on 01285 659673, or check our website
We make the most of being in print for 12 years!

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Corinium Radio Jan 19: Giffords Circus

Tony with Nell
The Day the Circus Came to Corinium Radio

The circus didn’t only come to town recently…it came to Corinium Radio!

Volunteers from Cirencester’s local community radio station soaked up the flavour of the ‘big top’ when a special guest from the world of circus paid a visit to our studio.

The VIP was none other than circus founder Nell Gifford, who was in Cirencester to switch on the town’s Christmas lights.

Nell, from Gifford’s Circus, was kind enough to spare us a few minutes for an interview as the clock was ticking down to the big moment when she had to light up Cirencester.

A performer, horse trainer and designer, Nell lives in the Cotswolds with her family.

Her appearance at the Cirencester Advent Festival also celebrated the 250th anniversary year of the modern circus.

Said station spokesman Tony Coleman, “It was great fun and an honour to interview Nell. I tried to get her to tell us what the theme of next season’s show was going to be but she was playfully keeping it secret at the time.”

You can listen to the Advent Festival build-up and Nell’s interview on the ‘listen again’ facility on Corinium Radio’s website, Look for ‘Advent Highlights’ under the ‘specials’ section in the list to the right of the page.

Corinium Radio also raised a glass during the festive season at its annual end-of-year gathering.

Officially the fayre was mince pies and sherry but, as you might expect, there was lots more on offer.

Added Tony Coleman, “We have to say a big thank-you to our chair Carole Boydell for hosting the festivities.

“It really was a lovely finish to a very busy year.”

So it’s a Happy New Year from us all here at Corinium Radio. If you want to join us contact Carole Boydell on 07776 144033 to see what we’re all about. Find out more and visit

Sunday, 6 January 2019

CDC: Specialists Advise Against Park and Ride on Emissions Grounds

In early December, Cotswold District Council’s Cirencester Parking Project concluded that a park and ride transport scheme for the town would generate increased traffic and pollution.  As a result, they will not be pursuing this as a sustainable parking option.
Chairman Cllr Mark Harris explains,
“Several people have suggested that Cirencester might benefit from a park and ride facility but specialists in this field have advised that in rural areas of Britain there are serious downsides to these schemes.  In particular, the emissions produced outweigh the emissions prevented because many motorists have to go out of their way to use park and ride sites.   Furthermore there are significant environmental issues in creating a carpark on what is likely to be a greenfield site.  
“What this all means is that a small reduction in urban traffic is offset by the generation of extra traffic beyond town boundaries – and a marked overall increase in emissions.”
Cllr Mark MacKenzie-Charrington, the CDC Cabinet Member overseeing parking in Cirencester, adds,
“We know that people continue to be concerned about the parking problem in Cirencester and we plan to meet the extra demand by erecting a multi-storey car park at the Waterloo site as soon as possible.  Latest estimates show that, subject to planning permission, work could start on site in early 2020 and could be completed within about one year. This is a more sustainable solution compared with park and ride, and I can assure residents near the Waterloo that we are committed to addressing concerns about issues such as environmental risks, traffic management and design impact.
“In the meantime, we are pleased that so many motorists are using the ‘free after 3 pm’ offer in the Brewery and Forum car parks to help spread demand.  We are also encouraging people to take up the free parking offer for weekends and public holidays at the staff car parks for Cotswold District Council (GL71PX) and St James’s Place (GL7 1 PX), especially during the busy Christmas period.”
“We continue to welcome feedback on our plans.  For updates on progress, please see in a new window) If you have any queries about the project please email, call us on 01285 623000 or write to Parking Team, Cotswold District Council, Trinity Road, Cirencester, GL7 1PX.”

Royal Voluntary Service in Cirencester

Can you help?
Volunteer to start something new in Cirencester
Volunteering charity, Royal Voluntary Service is making a call for volunteers to step forward in Cirencester to kick start a range of new social groups for people in the their community, particularly those in later life.

The call is part of a programme, Bring People Together, being delivered by the charity and Prudential and that wants to encourage more people to volunteer to help run, or start their own social activities.

A number of new groups have emerged since the programme began in Gloucestershire including a Knit & Knitter group and an over 60’s Yoga group.

Charlie Allen, Community Engagement and Development Worker for Gloucestershire at Royal Voluntary Service said: “Socialising and getting involved in activities is a great way to improve mental health and wellbeing and increase happiness. These new groups will help to reduce isolation and improve connections between people in the local community. Social activities could include; running a quiz group in a community hall, establishing a book club in a local library or exploring new ways to bring people together over food. All ideas are welcome.”

No previous experience is necessary as full training will be provided.

To find out more about volunteering contact Charlie Allen on or call 07774 334 322 or visit

The Body Workshop Open Day

Join in With The Body Workshop's Open Day – Sat
urday 26 January

Have you ever asked yourself why so many people are doing Pilates these days? The answer is, it changes people’s lives by Reducing stress, Mobilising the spine, Strengthening the core, Improving posture and Helping to “future proof” your body against injury.Now you can try it for FREE at The Body Workshop Pilates Open Day on Sat. 26 Jan.  

We have been teaching Pilates in Cirencester for nearly 20 years and our 5 highly qualified teachers offer 30+ classes a week in 2 dedicated studios in King St, Cirencester.

At the Open Day we are offering free:  Mat, Reformer and Seated Pilates Classes and The Franklin Method® Spine Class. Classes are suitable for all - male/female, young and old... and all abilities from beginners to advanced.

So, why not make 2019 that year that Changes Your Life?

To book  onto the open day via
    01285 655446

Corinium Museum January 2019 Events

One of Cirencester's best resources.


Swimming with Men
Corinium Cinema
Thursday 10 January, 7pm

A man who is suffering a mid-life crisis finds new meaning in his life as part of an all-male, middle-aged, amateur synchronized swimming team.

Cert: 12A
Run time: 1 hr. 37 min.

Cost: £6.50 per adult, £5.50 concession

Prehistory: A Story of Stone, Bone and Pottery
Afternoon workshop with James Harris
Thursday 17 January, 2-3.30pm

A lecture and handling workshop using fabulous prehistoric tools and pottery. Learn to identify objects from the Stone Age and the Bronze Age. Find out what the greatest ever human invention was.

Cost: £7 per adult, £6 members
Booking recommended

Dress and Identity in the Roman Empire
Afternoon Talk with Dr Valija Evalds
Wednesday 23 January, 2-3.30pm

The third in a series of 3 talks exploring Roman art and architecture. This illustrated lecture will explore the clothing of the Roman world: its textures, its colours and its symbols; from senators to slaves, to matrons and brides. 

Cost: £7 per adult, £6 members
Booking recommended

Rural Cinema
Saturday 26 & Sunday 27 January, 2.15pm

The Corinium Museum takes part in the Rural Cinema Scheme. Films are released approximately 4-6 weeks in advance. For film titles contact the Corinium Museum or visit our website.

Cost: £5.60 per adult, £4.80 concession

Spotlight on the Orpheus Mosaic
Gallery Talk with Emma Stuart
Wednesday 30 January, 2.30-3pm

The Orpheus Mosaic represents one of Britain’s finest examples from Roman Britain. Join Emma to hear about the design, unusual archaeology and the eventual rescue of this impressive mosaic. We will spend time in the gallery next to the mosaic giving opportunity for discussion and appraisal.

Cost: £3 per adult, £2.50 members
Booking recommended

La traviata
Royal Opera House LIVE Opera
Corinium Cinema
Wednesday 30 January, 6.45pm

From the thrill of unexpected romance to a heartbreaking reconciliation that comes too late – Verdi’s La traviata is one of the most popular of all operas. Alfredo falls in love in with the courtesan Violetta in glamorous Paris society, but underneath the surface run darker undercurrents, leading to a tragic ending. The opera’s wealth of melodies includes the famous Brindisi and the exuberant ‘Sempre libera’ – both showing the lyricism of Italian opera at its most immediately appealing. Richard Eyre’s production for The Royal Opera brings out all the emotional colour, from the giddy discovery of love, through painful confrontation to the inevitable conclusion. Lavish period sets and costumes enhance the reality of a moving story based on true life.
Sung in Italian with English subtitles.

Cost: £17 per adult, £15 members
Booking recommended

Evening Lecture with Dr Caroline Morris
From Saints Bones to Charles Dickens’ Monkey
Thursday 31 January, 7-8.30pm

Henry VIII’s glove, Jane Austen’s Table, Sir Edward Elgar’s glasses – biographically significant objects like these have been displayed for centuries. Today, there are hundreds of museums and historic houses across the country dedicated to celebrated figures and filled with their possessions. Dr Caroline Morris will share her research on biographical objects with a brief history of their display; describing the influences upon the development of the modern biographical museum from the medieval reliquary and the Renaissance wunderkammer to Romanticism and the Arts & Crafts movement.

Cost: £7 per adult, £6 members
Booking recommended

Please contact us if you would like any further details or images for any of the events that we are holding.

Wednesday, 2 January 2019

Cirencester Hypnotherapy and Health Centre Jan 19: Beating Anxiety by looking at the past to make a positive future.

Nicola Griffiths: Get in touch with this local

Nicola Griffiths is a clinical hypnotherapist and helps with numerous issues along with her colleagues.

A client said to me recently that they like to worry about things so that they’re prepared for any eventuality. I replied with “You overload your brain that way, creating negative chemicals and you’re actually less well prepared because your poor old brain is already in fight/flight mode. Whereas if you go forth into 2019 with the attitude that things are going to be good, or that you’ll cope better, then you start changing the chemical response to more positive ones. This allows you to deal with things so much more easily”.

I remember well some decades ago worrying that my father-in-law might lose his job. In fact, what happened was my brother-in-law lost his and we hadn’t seen it coming.

Frequently, if we worry about something, it either doesn’t happen or we’ve been so wrapped up in worrying about the thing that hasn’t happened, we don’t see the thing that is appearing on the horizon and, more importantly, a thing we could possibly have taken action over before it happened – if you follow me!

So what’s the answer? Well it’s to look at what good things have happened. Whether that be in 2018 even if your year hasn’t been that great, or, if your memory is as poor as mine, you might want to simply think about the good things that have happened today or in the last week! It makes one heck of a difference to how we view life overall and it can allow us to be more successful, more able, and definitely healthier, especially if we carry out this positive mental exercise daily. It’s no good just doing it once and thinking, ‘Ha, that’s that sorted then’.

What I like about the dramatic rise in anxiety is it’s made it more normal. If you go down with a common cold, you might think “Why me?” but I doubt you think you’re the only one with a cold? And that’s how mental health issues such as anxiety should be viewed – as something that we sort of catch but that we can get rid

of if we take the right steps, and I don’t mean just taking a paracetamol!! Let’s get rid of the taboo aspect and with the dramatic rise in anxiety, it’s certainly being talked about more which in my book is a very good thing.

As you step into 2019, make it a good year. Take action if action is needed or simply enjoy living in the moments of happiness.

Make it a proper ‘Happy’ New Year.

Visit the website for more information!

Country Matters With the Hodge: The Reality of Sheep Farming

Far more is going on than it might appear with sheep farming.
Country Matters
By The Hodge
‘A lamb is as dear to a poor man as an ox is to a rich one’.
Old proverb

Christmas is past and all the food and the drink and the partying and indulgence is over. Ditto the New Year celebrations. Your liver may have taken a battering and the bathroom scales have gone badly awry in the cold weather but you survived it all. Well done! Now all you have to do is to get through the rest of the winter and the drudgery of work and all will be well.

So, as you begin your daily commute spare just a moment’s thought for the sheep-keeping farmer or his shepherd. A lot will have started lambing before Christmas; others may be starting now or in the next few weeks. Many believe sheep are creatures whose one aim in life is to die. Accordingly, lambing time means staying up with all the roly-poly ewes to ensure that their ambitions are not easily fulfilled.

Sheep need help with lambing just as most western ladies need a midwife. Most sheep lamb at night so the period of new life for most farmers means weeks of night duty in a cold barn surrounded by sheep, many of which will try to present their lambs the wrong way round or back to front meaning that the shepherd must be on hand to put his arm up the birth canal to rearrange things in the hope that the lamb can be safely delivered and kept alive. Sheep were probably designed by nature to produce one lamb once a year but by selective breeding, farmers have modern types that will regularly produce, two, three or even four little beings which all adds up to extra productivity. On most farms, as the pregnancy develops, a specialist scanner will come along and inform the farmer how many embryos each ewe has so that she can be colour-marked so that the guessing is taken out of the equation. Clever, eh?
Inevitably, some of the more determined ewes will achieve their life’s ambition and shuffle off their ovine coil during the process and the farmer will have the added joy of trying to get a less productive ewe to foster those offspring or hand rearing them once they’ve received their initial life-giving colostrum, found in the mother’s first milk.
And I’m not talking about a smallholder here with a dozen or so ewes but a serious farmer with hundreds of ewes all set to give birth over a six week period. Sheep farming is a seriously intensive business for the farmer. I was brought up on an arable farm with dairy cows and pigs. Whenever I asked my father why we didn’t have sheep, I would be answered with a non-committal grunt that I learnt meant that the subject should be changed. When I got to about 12, instead of a grunt, I got sent to spend part of the summer holidays with a cousin in Hampshire who had a large pedigree flock of sheep. I spent three weeks dagging – an ancient term for the removal of clinkers of unmentionable substances that had collected under the tail – and dealing with foot rot – an affliction of many sheep that produces gasses of pungency once experienced never forgotten – so that when I returned home, the subject was never broached again.
So next time you have a roast leg of lamb or a lamb chop or cutlet of English or Welsh origin, spare just the tiniest thought for the dedication and perseverance that meant that the lamb itself was born and survived long enough to make it to your table – against all the odds.