NHM Readers Recommend: Inspiring Presents for Father’s Day

In June 2018 I asked the Friends of my “Louise nhm Smith” profile on Facebook “I’ve suddenly realised that it’s less than 2 weeks until Father’s Day….EEEKKK!!! It always sneaks up on me, every single year! So, I’m looking for inspiring presents for Father’s Day. Any suggestions?”

Many thanks for all your responses, listed below in no particular order:

NHM Readers Recommend: Inspiring Presents for Father’s Day

Natalie said “Something World Cup football related??? The first England match conveniently happens to be the Monday after Father’s Day!”

Kate said “We can highly recommend Lisa and Phil’s Longdog Brewery Real Ales”

Marion said “Shabby Gourmet Curry”

Charlotte said “Got my partner matching Game of Thrones T-shirts for him and my 2year old boy off Etsy. Will be so cute!”

Tracey said “Paint a pottery gift at Pots to Doodle Do Cliddesden”

Stacey said “Lilliepads Delicious Delights 1kg Mixed sweetie boxes yummy treat. That’s what my hubby is getting with a goody bag of random other bits including men’s sliders, socks lol”

Wendy said “You give your child £5, take them to Poundland and hand them a basket, let them sort it out. Teaching life skills!”

Susie  said “https://www.my-picture.co.uk/ great quality canvas prints from photos & bargain prices too”

Ruza said “What about something for the man shed?”

Leah said Buyagift.co.uk, Notonthehighstreet.co.uk, Red letter days, Chocs, Socks, Red5.co.uk, Men-kind in town, Gadget shops lol”

Kirsty said “Racetrack tshirt The Personalisation Parlour

Mel said “The Home of Hearts Look at my Father’s Day collection for inspiration or give me the details and I will create a keepsake for you!”

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Friends of Old Basing Schools Summer Fair, Sunday 7th July 12-3pm

Come and support your local schools, this year we have an African drummer, drumming work shops, arena performances, fun inflatables, an assault course, water play, archery, face painting, a variety of games and stalls for everyone. BBQ, Beer, Pimms, hot & cold drinks, cakes & ice-cream.

Entrance £1.50 per adult, accompanied children free.

At St. Mary’s Junior School Belle Vue Road, Old Basing.

https://www.facebook.com/events/415552792539080/

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Coloured Whispers

Hi, I am Iulia, mother of two and owner of Coloured Whispers – a re-invention of the typical flower arrangement business, i.e. unusual flower arrangements and table centrepieces that last up to 10 years.

What sets these arrangements apart from the live and artificial ones is not only the unique melange of natural elements, but also their longevity; lack of maintenance required; the fact that they are dust-free and they absorb all the moisture in the room. We use only natural, organic elements throughout the whole process – including packaging. Every piece that we create is a unique hybrid – made up of real, preserved flowers along with Iceland reindeer moss.

We are definitely not the typical high-street florists but more of a shabby chic, boutique type of business. We cater to anyone who wants to offer a special, long-lasting gift; pubs; restaurants; coffee shops; wedding suppliers and offices.

https://www.facebook.com/colouredwhispers/

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COMPETITION – NCT Nearly New Sale

🌟🌟COMPETITION TIME🌟

Hopefully, you all know by now that the Basingstoke NCT Nearly New Sale is just over a month away!

We are offering 3️⃣ lucky people the opportunity to grab some amazing bargains at our ever popular sale on 30th March 15 minutes before the sale doors officially open to NCT Members and 30 minutes before the General Public – this means you will gain entry into the sale at 10.45am!!! 👏👏

Entering the competition couldn’t be any easier – simply…

*COMMENT on the link below with what you love most about the NCT  Newly New Sale or tell us what you are looking forward to the most and remember to also TAG a friend.

**LIKE AND SHARE the below post and / or the page to help us raise as much as we can for the NCT Charity.

So, remember to COMMENT and LIKE AND SHARE the below link for your chance to win! The competition will end on 23rd March and the winners will be announced later on the same day!!

COMPETITION LINK: https://www.facebook.com/134111313662776/posts/516227662117804/

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NHM Readers Recommend: Best Places to Visit Santa with a One-Year-Old

In November 2018, a NHM Reader asked: “Where are the best places to visit Santa in the Basingstoke area for a 1 year old? I’ve seen loads of places advertised but don’t know where is recommended?”

Thank you for all your responses, they are listed below in no particular order.

Please bear in mind that listings may change in subsequent years, but hopefully they will still be a good base point for your own research.

All opinions are the readers own and are not that of NHM.

NHM Readers Recommend: Best Places to Visit Santa with a One-Year-Old

Wendy said, “Proteus would be well worth a visit at that age, then I would just do festival place for the present and photo op, your looking at £10 minimum for almost all other Santa’s.

Charlotte said, “4 kingdoms is always brill have taken my son since he was a baby and now he’s 4.”

Samantha said, “We took our 9 month old last Christmas to the Santa in Festival Place. Did the job and you didn’t pay for all the other bits. On reflection, perfect for the age but probably once they hit 18 months plus you’d be looking for a bit more of an ‘experience’.”

Mary said, “At Proteus the show is interactive and sensory, made especially for little ones. You move around the space so little ones aren’t expected to sit still for long stretches. Here’s a link: http://www.proteustheatre.com/whats-on/the-magical-christmas-toy-shop Santa will feature but it’s very gentle and not a one on one grotto experience.”

Joanna said, “Active tots is good but is just outside of Basingstoke.”

Becky said, “We went to Miller’s Ark. Our little one was a little young at 8 months but the doggie there made her day!”

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Kids Bee Happy Sand Art 2018

I came across Kids Bee Happy Sand Art a couple of months ago and given my children love Sand Art I thought I would sign up to sell the fabulous products.

And given my ‘day job’ is all about relaxation I thought I would see if I could use the Sand Art in a class and I’ve developed ‘And Relax’…..

I’m always on the look out for other ways to engage children with relaxation that’s different to my usual Relax Kids courses as not all children want to attend a 4 week course and sometimes it’s nice to do something a bit different while encouraging relaxation. If this is popular I will look at making it a regular feature in my timetable.

In the hour long session we will be doing:

  • Sand Art (one A4 sand art print per child)
  • Mindful Colouring
  • Learning some breathing techniques
  • Meditation/Visualisation

My aim is that children will come away feeling relaxed and having experienced some different techniques to help them relax.

I haven’t put an age range on this session simply because children will be working at their own pace.  Some younger children may need support with the Sand Art and other parts of the session so I will be encouraging the parents of younger children to stay for the session.

I’m running a session on Sunday 20 January from 9.15am-10.15am in Brighton Hill, Basingstoke.  The cost is £7.50 per child. Spaces are limited to 12 children.   Please get in touch for booking details.

Sand Art Take Home Packs

I have Sand Art Take Home Packs available ranging from small oval size up to A4 size with various prices depending on print size – if you are interested in finding out more please do check out Kids Bee Happy Sand Art with Kath (on Facebook) or contact me (details below).

Sand Art Parties

If your children love Sand Art then why not consider a Sand Art party – all children will go away with their own masterpiece!

Would you like Sand Art at your event?

If you are running an event and want to engage the children then please considering bringing Sand Art to your event, again please contact me (details below).

Kath Routledge

Facebook: Kids Bee Happy Sand Art with Kath

Mobile: 07989 476533

Email: rkbasingstoke@yahoo.co.uk

 

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New Businesses open in Basingstoke Dec 2018

New businesses open their doors in Basingstoke

Shoppers, visitors and businesses in Basingstoke can make the most of a new and exciting selection of independent venues and national chains which have opened their doors in the Hampshire town.

Nine new businesses have specially selected Basingstoke town centre to set up shop in the last three months. The new businesses which now call Basingstoke home are:

The Olive House, photo credit Basingstoke Together

 

Basingstoke is bucking the national trend as a thriving shopping hub as high streets across the country face a number of difficulties. Six out of the new businesses have chosen to open in the Top of Town, which is an area rich with local history. It is home to the landmark Willis Museum, it is the starting place of Burberry and it is also host to the Basingstoke market alongside several independent businesses.

The new businesses have been supported by Basingstoke Together, which is the public face of the Basingstoke BID. Basingstoke Together aims to help the town centre to thrive by creating destination events, engaging with consumers and supporting retailers and businesses to be successful.

Lucy Boazman, Chief Executive of Basingstoke Together, said: “Basingstoke has so much to offer to prospective businesses looking for somewhere to launch their new or latest venture. Alongside the array of national high street brands in Festival Place and The Malls, we also have some fantastic independent shops and businesses, which make a visit to Basingstoke truly unique.

“We are so pleased to welcome the new businesses to Basingstoke and we wish them all the best. We also hope that residents and visitors to the town will explore both the newcomers as well as the existing independent businesses throughout the town centre. There is so much choice on our high street now, so we look forward to seeing how people embrace that, both in the run up to Christmas and well into the new year.”

Basingstoke town centre, particularly the Top of Town, is also already home to a wide array of successful independent businesses including The Tea Bar, Arc hairdressers, and Exciting Escapes.

Some of the new companies in Basingstoke are fresh to the market, including The Olive House and Chennai Express. However, the team behind Duck & Tipple already run a successful events company, IncuHive has begun opening various other branches in the south of England and Surya’s relocated from Basing View.

Duck & Tipple, photo credit Basingstoke Together

George Scott-Welsh, Chief Operating Officer of IncuHive, said: “It is extremely encouraging to see the number of new businesses opening within the town centre and especially at the Top of Town. With the Top of Town being majority independent owner run businesses, this creates a more personal experience for both the shoppers and the other surrounding businesses who are collaborative and supportive of one another.

“The community feel of the Top of Town, teamed with fantastic architecture and local history, creates a hugely positive environment in which to visit and run a business.”

Basingstoke Together is committed to supporting independent businesses in the town to develop a vibrant shopping hub. It has recently launched a #BIndependent campaign to foster a regional business community.

For more information visit www.basingstoketogether.co.uk

The Salt Lounge, photo credit Basingstoke Together

Basingstoke Together supports local businesses by creating cultural hotspots within the town centre to draw visitors into the town and promote the business and leisure opportunities on the doorstep.

Basingstoke is a BID – a Business Improvement District, which is a business-led and business funded body formed to improve a defined commercial area. The improvements made by a BID are determined by the businesses themselves. It may include additional cleaning, security or projects such as recycling and improved infrastructure as well as destination branding and promotion.

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Small Business Saturday in Basingstoke this weekend!

BID to support independents in Basingstoke this weekend

Shoppers are being encouraged to love the local and independent businesses in Basingstoke this weekend to celebrate the UK-wide initiative, Small Business Saturday.

Small Business Saturday, which takes place on Saturday 1 December, is a national celebration of the smaller and independent shops which line the UK’s high streets. Basingstoke is home to a diverse selection of shops for different and unique Christmas gifts and restaurants to take a break from the shopping frenzy.

Cool!Merchandise, photo credit Basingstoke Together

Small Business Saturday is largely viewed as the antidote to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which is dominated by the big brands. An estimated £748 million was spent on Small Business Saturday last year, making it the most successful year so far. It also has the support of growing number of local authorities, with 87% pledging their support last year.* However, Small Business Saturday still lags behind Black Friday, as we reportedly spent £7 billion during last week’s buying blitz.** Basingstoke Together, the public face of the Basingstoke BID, wants more people to embrace the town centre independents, particularly in the Top of Town, to recognise its potential as a vibrant shopping hub.

To celebrate Small Business Saturday, Basingstoke Together have created a series of short videos to put small businesses in the town under the spotlight to showcase their products and services. Independent businesses in Basingstoke have also been provided with printed hessian bags reading ‘I supported a small business in Basingstoke’ to gift to customers free of charge with any purchase.

Lucy Boazman, Chief Executive of Basingstoke Together, said: “We’re lucky to have some fantastic national chains in Basingstoke, particularly in Festival Place and The Malls. But, a stone’s throw away at the top of town is the home to shops and businesses which you simply won’t find anywhere else. We hope that people in Basingstoke will support our independent and small businesses in the town centre as they do their Christmas shopping this weekend as well as in the future.

“There has been a lot of coverage in the media this year about the struggling UK high street. However, Basingstoke is bucking the trend. We have welcomed eight new businesses to the town in the last couple of months; the majority of which have been small and independent.”

The Salt Lounge, photo credit Basingstoke Together

Basingstoke Together aims to help the town centre to thrive by creating destination events, engaging with consumers and supporting retailers and businesses. It will soon be launching a campaign to develop a regional community of Basingstoke’s small businesses.

As part of the campaign, independents in Basingstoke can display posters and window stickers, share their stories on social media using the #BIndependent hashtag. Basingstoke Together also offers free training with small businesses in Basingstoke on how to support growth in the town.

Joanne Goodman, Director of independent business Wax Works on Church Street, said: “It is a very difficult time to be a small business on the high street. We’re lucky to have such a diverse range of small and independent businesses in Basingstoke so a campaign to draw attention to them is a fantastic idea. It is also great to be able to reward people who choose to support small and independent businesses. When you support a small business, you support not only someone’s dream but the backbone of the town’s future. ”

For more information, visit www.basingstoketogether.co.uk

For more information on Small Business Saturday, visit https://smallbusinesssaturdayuk.com/

The Secret Garden, photo credit Basingstoke Together

 

*Source: https://www.simplybusiness.co.uk/knowledge/articles/2018/11/small-business-saturday-helps-smes-fight-back-against-black-friday/

**Source: /www.theguardian.com/business/2018/nov/26/cyber-monday-uk-weekend-sales-spend-over-7bn-black-friday

Basingstoke Together supports local businesses by creating cultural hotspots within the town centre to draw visitors into the town and promote the business and leisure opportunities on the doorstep.

Basingstoke is a BID – a Business Improvement District, which is a business-led and business funded body formed to improve a defined commercial area. The improvements made by a BID are determined by the businesses themselves. It may include additional cleaning, security or projects such as recycling and improved infrastructure as well as destination branding and promotion.

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Let it snow in Basingstoke town centre

Christmas is coming to the Top of Town in Basingstoke as it will be the only high street in the UK to be adorned with a vast array of specially commissioned window displays of snowy scenes.

Several of the independent businesses throughout the Hampshire town will be displaying bespoke vinyl decals of festive fun from today. There will be six designs in total yet each business will have its name incorporated into their one-of-a-kind Christmas creation by the artistic team from Snow Windows.

It is just one of the many festive events which will be bringing the spirit of Christmas to Basingstoke this year. It is being run by Basingstoke Together, the face of the Basingstoke Business Improvement District (BID). The BID’s aim is to help Basingstoke town centre to thrive by creating destination events, engaging with consumers and supporting retailers and businesses.

Lucy Boazman, Chief Executive of Basingstoke Together, said: “We’re really proud that Basingstoke has so much to offer residents and visitors who want to enjoy a truly festive feeling this year.

“Alongside picking up a bargain or two in the busy shopping period, we hope that everyone who spends some time in the town centre makes the most of the various opportunities to experience the spirit of the occasion on our doorstep.”

25 businesses in the Top of Town will be supporting the initiative to create a snowy spectacle along Winchester Street and the surrounds. The Snow Windows will be on display in time for a wide variety of festivities happening in Basingstoke.

Surya’s International Food and Newsagent on Church Street is one of the businesses who will be dressing their windows ready for Christmas.

Owner Kishor Patel said:  “We’re really looking forward to Surya’s wonderful snow window display being installed. It will give our store a welcoming feel and also hopefully encourage people to take the time to visit the top of town and admire the festive decorations.”

The array of festive events in Basingstoke this year include:

  • Nutcracker Trail – 16 November – 31 December: Take your children on a magical trail around Basingstoke to discover all ten of our Christmas Nutcrackers. Collect a Trail Book from various pick-up points around the town centre to be in with a chance of winning festive prizes.
  • Christmas Cracker Making Station – 24th and 25 November: Get crafty and join the elves at the Christmas Cracker Making Station in Festival Place. Fill your crackers with giggles, jokes and wishes to set your Christmas off with a bang.
  • Christmas street theatre – every Saturday from 24 November – 22 December: Head to The Malls to take in a wide variety of festive fun shows including Funky Santas and Giant Christmas presents.

  • The Night Before Christmas projection – throughout December: A special Night Before Christmas show will be projected onto The Willis Museum. Shows will be on the hour every day from 4pm.

Keri Ackling, of Snow Windows, said: “We have loved the challenge of creating bespoke and reusable decals on a much larger scale for the first time in Basingstoke. We feel that they will really create the ‘wow factor’ for the festive season – they are the perfect backdrop for your Christmas selfie!”

Find out more about Basingstoke Together by visiting https://www.basingstoketogether.co.uk

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Chalk Ridge Christmas Fayre – 1st December 2018

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