Dear Reader

It is now my firm theory that the wetter the summer the more colourful the autumn. What glorious hues of red we have seen during the mostly sunny month of October! As the light closes in we turn to life indoors and the snug prospect of relaxing in front of a roaring fire. What is more, November is also an ideal month in which to see the many cultural events, cinema showings and theatre pieces on offer in our area. These range from the allsinging, all-dancing Sleeping Beauty at The Castle, see page 77, local display of operatic talent in Stamford, see page 88, and various productions at The Stahl Theatre, see pages 98 and 106, to cinema screening in Corby, see page 22, or in Oundle and some of our villages, see pages 112-113.

Look to the pages ahead to see the Christmas fairs and tree festivals talking place in our villages - great to find inspiration for your own Christmas tree. Turn to page 72 to get advice on how to pick the perfect tree or to page 46, where Kiki Everard gives tips on how to make your home look inviting for Christmas. An abundance of Christmas wreath and table centrepiece workshops are taking place with our florists Foxtail Lilly, see page 40, and The Garden Room, see page 58, as well as in many of our historic halls.

The majority of these events featured are raising funds for charity. To see how you can help our local Cransley Hospice raise funds this Christmas, turn to pages 114-115. One of the ways suggested is to donate funds allocated to Christmas cards and, just as last year, I shall pledge the Village Connect budget to this worthy cause and urge you to do the same.

For the very first time our family will not be together for Christmas - quite a blow for a serious Christmas lover. Our daughter, Emily, is on her gap year in Australia and will be having a ‘barbie on the beach’ rather than sharing our traditional Christmas dinner. We shall miss her terribly but will take comfort in cherishing wonderful memories of times we have shared during an eventful year which has seen a 21st, 18th and 16th birthday celebration and will look forward to welcoming her home again in the New Year.

Whether your loved ones are near or far away, may I wish you all a Merry







Vivi Sant Cole 

Village Connect

Hillcrest House

Church Hill



NN14 1AH

Tel: 01536 744700