Page 36 - Cheltenham Living Nov/Dec 2019
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                 NOTES FROM THE GARDEN
                  Matt Biggs is back with gardening ideas for your family and friends this Christmas. Matt is on Radio 4’s Gardeners’ Question Times’ expert panel. He is also known for having presented a number of television programmes, writing several books and undertaken lectures and talks.
To find out more about Matt please visit his new website mattbiggs.com
Winter is here and whilst a spot of energetic gardening is just the thing to warm us
up, we also need to do a bit of Christmas shopping for our gardening chums too,
so here are a few ideas. Membership of the RHS is just an amazing gift and one that lasts all year - not only will you be supporting an institution at the heart of British horticulture, the lucky recipient will have a copy of The Garden magazine landing on their doorstep every month, exclusive members’ days discounts on public days at their world famous shows,
access to advice from experts and even the opportunity to order seeds harvested in RHS gardens to grow in your own and lots more too.
For children, packets of seeds make great stocking fillers and even marking out a spot in your garden that will become their very own patch is a great idea. For families, how about paying the cost of an allotment for
a year (make sure that they are up for the extra time and work involved beforehand!)
If you have an elderly relative who loves their garden but finds working in it
tough, you can employ the services of
a professional to help them out - either
a one-off blitz and tidy or as a regular
slot throughout the year. For people who are housebound, how about buying an ornamental tree or shrub that they can see from their window - and a gardener to plant it, or a beautiful bird feeder so that they
have something different to see and enjoy every day and, of course, taking a garden lover to visit a wonderful local garden is a huge treat in itself.
Courses at local colleges are also a
terrific gift, from one day pruning courses to a more in depth and longer series of workshops and these are also great for people newly retired who have time to spend but perhaps have never had the opportunity to learn certain skills. Whoever you are buying for there is a thoughtful present out there waiting to be bought and that’s not even mentioning great books, tools and the myriad of other options, so that is the shopping done, now back to the digging!
“Gardening is a way of life, a passion which gives us a connection with the earth that sustains us.”
Matt Biggs
The Sofas & Stuff story -10th Anniversary
The Sofas & Stuff story began back in 2009. Founder Andrew Cussins tells us more...
“I noticed a gap in the market with regards to selling bespoke, handmade, British sofas and beds online and from quirky non high street locations” explains founder, Andrew Cussins. Ten years on and now with 13 showrooms across the country, Sofas & Stuff celebrate their anniversary with the company’s best
ever year.
After spending a lifetime commuting and traveling all over the world, Andrew and his wife Julia wanted to start a business close to their home in the Sussex Downs. “Lunch at home seemed like a nice idea” Andrew adds. As luck had it, a beautiful timbered barn became available in the village of Fittleworth, and the rest
is history.
“In those early days we found we had customers who were driving for hours to come and see us. One day, one particular customer commented that they loved the experience at Sofas & Stuff so much, because the barn ‘didn’t feel like a shop’. In that moment, what was intended to be an online only company morphed in an instant into a mixture of online and beautiful quirky, off-pitch, bricks and mortar.” Andrew explains.
Andrew adds “Those early days seem a long time ago now, but what we learnt then, we still abide by today.”
Sofas & Stuff are ever growing and with over 40,000 happy customers over the years, the brand is always looking at ways to expand.
The latest release to launch with Sofas & Stuff is the introduction of their brand new fabric collection. Sumptuously soft and durable, the new Essential Collection from Sofas & Stuff is
an affordable and wide range of rich and neutral fabrics. With 154 colours to choose from; including clever glossy velvets, stain resistant cotton blends, herringbone and basket weaves, to classic linen mixes and soft wools. As well as three new
sofa designs, engineered to retail at a lower price point, whilst maintaining their obsessive level of product quality.
Visit us at one of our showrooms in London & nationwide. Call us on 0808 1783211 or visit sofasandstuff.com are completely obsessed with
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