Latest in: Features

  • Yarrow

    Achillea – the Soldier’s Herb. In Greek mythology Achilles was a handsome warrior who was fearless in battle and took good care of his soldiers, healing their wounds with potions made from a herb that’s named Achillea after him. We might call it yarrow but botanically it is referred...
  • Poachers Prize

    From poacher’s prize to pampered pet Today when you think ‘rabbit’, depending on whether you cultivate crops or you’re a pet owner, you either think ‘destructive pest’ or ‘cuddly bunny’. You may even think both! In the Middle Ages your view would have been totally different. Rabbits were an...
  • A interview with a Dame

    Q&A with J P McCue – The Royal Spa Centre’s Dazzling Panto Dame With panto fast approaching we thought we would give Sleeping Beauty’s Dame Dolly Doubtfart, aka J P McCue, a quick grilling! When did you first perform? My first performance in front of a paid audience was...
  • Gladstone Small

    So far in these series of chats we have met a celebrity chef, a Hollywood film star and a rock star…this month I get the chance to talk with another Four Shires’ personality. Cricketing hero Gladstone Small. We meet in a lovely converted barn that Gladstone has moved to...
  • Let there be light!

    This time of the year brings shorter days and the nights draw in. Suddenly the lights dim and die signaling a power cut. Not such an unusual occurrence in the villages of the Four Shires. Now where on earth did you put those candles? After groping around in the...
  • Ash Plants and Arthritus

    At well over the recommended sell by date, even the anticipated shelf life is looming, I am decidedly chipped at the edges. I do not complain about this as for many years I was repeatedly told,  “you will suffer in old age”. I accepted it as the price to...
  • Blockley walk

    I promised you that we would be dipping our toes into the Cotswolds. Well, we have, but not before we became extras in a TV film, discovered some classic cars, a massive central heating system and somewhat stupidly had a second bottle of red! The three of us had...
  • From Halloween to Hogwarts

    The “Trick or Treat” season is almost upon us and you may have or be about to create a big orange pumpkin with enormous empty eye sockets and an evil jagged-toothed grin to sit on your doorstep. For most of us in the UK these giant winter squashes are...
  • Coffin Museum

    First published September 2015 Four Shires Magazine Set well back from the busy A4095 Bicester to Witney road that runs through the village of Bladon is the church of St Martin. On the face of it the church and its graveyard are just what you’d expect to find in...
  • Create a homework headquarters

    With the September issue of the magazine featuring Education we have found these handy tips for creating a study space for your child that we published a year ago in the Magazine and throught it fitting to share them again with you now. Finding space for a designated study...