Southsea Lifestyle – Free Magazine for Southsea, Old Portsmouth, Eastney & Gunwharf Quays

October / November 2021

Date: October 3rd, 2021

Although the summer has to be my favourite time of the year, the autumn and those magical weeks leading up to Christmas, has to come as a close second. Despite the various problems faced by farmers and retailers, the change of season also heralds a cornucopia of autumn fruits and vegetables.

Daniel Nowland has made the most of one of autumn’s most iconic vegetables and offers not one, but three delicious recipes for preparing butternut squash (p.12). Slowly but surely life is returning to normal and Emma Beatty in her Culture Vulture column is full of ideas for shows and events to attend (p.40).

While if it’s a tipple you are after, Joe Grant suggests beer can be every bit as good as wine to accompany a meal (p.8) – you just need to try a few, to see which ones work the best with each dish, now that’s good way to spend the autumn!

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

August / September 2021

Date: August 1st, 2021

It may be quite small and nothing to get too excited about, but look carefully there it is… the beginnings of a What’s On guide (p.37). The What’s On guide was always something Southsea Lifestyle prided itself upon and until February 2020 and the beginning of the first lockdown, the number of events, from across the city would often run to five pages or more.

We also welcome back Emma Beatty’s Culture Vulture column, tempting us with some intriguing exhibitions and looking forward to the re-named and re-branded, Ports Fest arts festival 2-4 July. And, just when you thought the only live music you’d be listening to this year would be a busker in Palmerston Road precinct, Victorious Festival comes to life – we have a description of what to expect down on the Common this August bank holiday weekend 27-29, (see p.38).

Of course the temptation is to think everything has returned to ‘normal’, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves, we must still be careful and follow the guidelines to keep ourselves and our community safe, and then maybe, just maybe, by the end of the year, our What’s On guide will be filling the pages of Southsea lifestyle once more!

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

June / July 2021

Date: June 1st, 2021

It may be quite small and nothing to get too excited about, but look carefully there it is… the beginnings of a What’s On guide (p.37). The What’s On guide was always something Southsea Lifestyle prided itself upon and until February 2020 and the beginning of the first lockdown, the number of events, from across the city would often run to five pages or more.

We also welcome back Emma Beatty’s Culture Vulture column, tempting us with some intriguing exhibitions and looking forward to the re-named and re-branded, Ports Fest arts festival 2-4 July. And, just when you thought the only live music you’d be listening to this year would be a busker in Palmerston Road precinct, Victorious Festival comes to life – we have a description of what to expect down on the Common this August bank holiday weekend 27-29, (see p.38).

Of course the temptation is to think everything has returned to ‘normal’, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves, we must still be careful and follow the guidelines to keep ourselves and our community safe, and then maybe, just maybe, by the end of the year, our What’s On guide will be filling the pages of Southsea lifestyle once more!

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

April / May 2021

Date: March 31st, 2021

We do love a theme at Southsea Lifestyle, but the one running through this edition is more by happenstance than design…

It started with an article by the Portsmouth Bee Keepers, see p. 46, about the plight of the bumble bee, in fact all bees, facing habitat loss and insecticides. Followed by Emma Beatty’s piece about Southsea’s Elm trees, see p.44. We’d already written about cycling in the city, p.48, when along came a riveting article from the University of Portsmouth about climate change and how Portsmouth will be affected i n the future, see p.20.

So there we have it, a mini environmental edition at a time when many of us are focusing on what life might look like, post-pandemic, business as usual, or a more enlightened approach t hat takes into account our reliance upon the natural world?

None of us know what the future holds, but what is so impressive about COVID-19 is that the world community, despite its squabbles, has found ways of not just coping with the infection, but in finding a cure — via a vaccine.

Our environmental problems may not be solved quiet so simply, but by working together, both locally and globally, there is enormous hope.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

Sense of Freedom Design Challenge 2021

Date: February 15th, 2021

Following the success of the Charlotte Cornelius Jewellery Design competition last year, you are invited to send designs for the 2021 design challenge.

Jewellery Design

Simply design a piece of jewellery and you may win the chance of having it made, free, in solid Hallmarked Sterling Silver for yourself, or as a gift to say ’Thank you’. Plus 4 other finalists will win a £100 bespoke design voucher.

The theme is “Sense of freedom”. Your design can be for any form of wearable jewellery that can be made from sterling silver.

You are welcome to create your design in any media you wish, from using pencil & paper, to CAD or in 3D, perhaps, using wax or wire?

Jewellery DesignPlease upload a single image of your design with its dimensions, along with a design mood board, see examples on this page. Go to the Charlotte Cornelius Jewellery blog page, where you will find the link to upload your design.

There is no right or wrong way of creating your design, just let your imagination run free, even if you don’t know how it might be made, we can help you with that.

“…I would really encourage people to take part in the creative competition challenge. It can help having something positive and different to focus on during these challenging times. Good Luck!” says Molly, Design Challenge winner 2020

To allow for more participation in our design challenge we have extended our closing dates: Closing date for entries 19th February Finalists announced 24th February.
87A Marmion Road Southsea PO5 2AX

Posted in: Competitions & Promos

February March 2021

Date: February 8th, 2021

I’ve always cried easily especially during movies. I had to pretend I had hay fever when I went on a date to see Schindler’s List at the local multiplex. The Pursuit of Happiness I’ve watched three times, but I’ve always viewed the ending through a fog of snotty tears.

We all have our emotional triggers of course. My mother would cry at the end of a family holiday, B&B owners, or hotel receptionists would look sideways as mum sobbed like a baby as she tried to tell them what a lovely time she’d had. Acts of kindness can be extremely moving and the COVID-19 crisis has led people to be incredibly kind to one another.

One example is The Lifehouse, p.42 which has been helping the homeless and anyone in need of food and comfort throughout the pandemic. And if you are feeling in need of encouragement or looking for a sense of hope, I recommend you read Charla’s article Crumbs of Joy, see p.30, while Malissa Sledmere suggests ways of streaming the latest independent films to our screens p.40 — you might even find a movie to bring a tear to your eye?

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

November / December 2020

Date: November 1st, 2020

I’m debating whether to ignore COVID-19, or to include it in my introduction. After all, there’s more to life than a global pandemic. In fact, I’ve become so used to our new world, that I feel quite naked when I’m not wearing a mask, and my hands have never been as clean. As with so much in life, it’s all about trying to find a balance, keeping safe, but also finding enjoyment in life whenever we can. Hopefully, we’ve managed to strike the right note with this issue, with a blend of inspiring and even glamorous features about homes and interiors.

With Christmas just around the corner, we’ve given food and wine a starring role, and why not? If ever there were a Christmas that we need to take pleasure in food, while also spreading socially-distanced joy to our friends and family, this has to be it! And, talking of food and spreading joy, we’d love you to nominate a person that you believe deserves to be given a Christmas hamper from Southsea Deli – see p.43.

There’s also a chance to win a book by the amazing Southsea children’s book author & illustrator Neal Layton p.25.

Let’s enjoy every remaining day of 2020 and look forward to a wonderful Christmas and New Year.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

September / October 2020

Date: August 30th, 2020

As we move into the autumn and we tentatively explore our brave new world, we are focusing on comfort. And what can be more comforting than food, enjoyed at home or in a local restaurant, carefully monitored and as clean as a new napkin ring? See Daniel Nowland’s article, of The Southsea Deli, talking about the joys of home cooking (p.24). Luke Newton of Sweat Southsea, considers the importance of ‘wellness’, well beyond flexing our muscles or running full pelt along the promenade (p.27). And Kate Thompson has briefly moved away from looking at other people’s abodes to describe the amusing challenges of creating her very own mosaic garden in central Southsea, (p.28). Take care, take comfort and we will be back again in November.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

June / July 2020

Date: June 30th, 2020

Hello, it’s good to be back. Re-reading my intro to our last edition February/March, I talked in glowing terms about the year ahead. Little did I know… It’s not all lost of course, and as we begin to emerge from the lockdown blinking into the light, with our strange hairstyles and sanitised hands, life is much the same, just a little bit different. I’ve grown used to the queues and the masks, but I still feel surprised when someone crosses the street as I come towards them, it’s all done very politely of course, as though they’ve always wanted to check out the telegraph pole on the other side of the road, but I guess that’s part of the ’new normal’ that we hear so much about.

As we embark on this new world, do we go back to madly making up for lost time and lost wages, or do we begin to see a value in taking more time to look after others, ourselves and the planet? We asked 6 people from various sectors in the city for their thoughts (p.41), while local GP, Penny Wilson, talks about new ways of looking after patients – plus Penny gives some health advice (p.38).

A young student Sienna Chin talks about the Black Lives Matter movement, her experience of racism and her hopes for a better future (p.17). We may have strong opinions about history, statues and TV programmes from the 1970s, but if we put these cultural symbols to one side, it is how we perceive and treat people that really counts, if nothing else, let’s hope that will be the ’new normal’.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

February / March 2020

Date: February 4th, 2020

OK, I know it’s not original, but we jumped on the New Decade bandwagon to see where it would take us – but all from a local perspective.

We asked people in the street what they hoped for Southsea over the next ten years, p.40, and John Worsey interviewed Steve Pitt of Portsmouth City Council for his vision for the city, p.42. Elly Mitchell takes a light hearted look at ten restaurants ‘to help you kick start 2020 in style’, p.8.

I’ve got a good feeling about the next decade, even though I know we face some huge challenges, both internationally and as a city. Whenever I talk to people from all over town, they are always so positive and cheerful. We are a city that innovates and creates, read about The Festival of the Sea and a new app to tackle plastic waste, p.36. Or how retailers are seeing the closure of our department stores as an opportunity, p.32.

We live in a special place, and as a community, we can be a beacon of light to the rest of the country! Doing our bit to halt climate change, helping the homeless, tackling racism, giving our youngsters the best start in life… it’s a long list, but let’s give it a go. To paraphrase Jodi Picoult, “You just have to put the past behind you, and find something better in the future”. Bring on the 2020s.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

December / January 2019/20

Date: November 29th, 2019

I couldn’t understand all the fuss about the election being held in December, as though we would have to cancel Christmas, or cross frozen wastelands to cast our vote. In Southsea at least, we just have to pop into the church hall or school room down the road, mark an X with a stubby pencil and it’s done. A bit of an anti-climax really after all the political wrangling, but I find it fascinating, a bit like a Greek drama, with a touch of the East Enders thrown in. Whoever you vote for, I just hope the UK becomes a less fractious, happier country in the new year.

One topic that all parties are finally taking seriously is climate change – thanks for all the positive comments we received after our last issue. We have continued the theme on p.42, by asking members of the public about how they are trying to mitigate their impact on the environment. John Worsey has written his annual Christmas story, with the help of Portsmouth’s very own Charles Dickens, p.58.

And before you go, it’s Southsea Lifestyle’s 15-year anniversary in January. Many thanks to you, our lovely readers, our advertisers, writers, deliverers and a special mention of Holbrooks our printers, we couldn’t have made it so far without you. Zirrinia talks about how she started the magazine on p.55.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

October / November 2019

Date: October 6th, 2019

Climate change, climate emergency or environmental degradation – take your pick, they all amount to the same: we have messed up our planet and we have to fix it.

Over 1,000 people recently took part in the Global Climate Strike protest at Guildhall Square on 20th September, along with millions of people across the globe. Uniting with Greta Thunberg, who recently spoke so movingly at the United Nations about how the “older generation had stolen her dreams and her childhood”, we felt it was imperative to make climate change our cover story.

Inside, a range of articles touch upon sustainability, while John Worsey has written a wry, philosophical piece about how we can each move to finding a greener way (p.40). We also asked three local environmentalists for their take on the crisis and for ideas about what we in Southsea can do to try to reduce our impact upon our beautiful planet (p.38).

We don’t want to stop the discussion here, so tell us your thoughts and that you have done to reduce your impact upon the environment: email or find Southsea Lifestyle on Facebook.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

August / September 2019

Date: August 1st, 2019

Last June, in an article about the seafront we coined a phrase,‘Southsea was made for summer’. I was so pleased with thewords, I half expected to see it emblazoned on T-shirts and teatowels all over town. That’s not to say Southsea isn’t a great placeto live in the winter, but it’s in the summer that the town has a springin its step. The light from the sea reflects and brightens the city’s atmosphere, and curtains swing in the breeze at open windows.

As Emma Beatty reports in Culture Vulture (p.64), the seafront has had a boost with a new helter-skelter and restaurant onSouth Parade Pier, and this has to be one of the best years for roses – pop along to see (and smell) Southsea Rose Garden, in front of Canoe Lake, with its lush grass tennis courts.

Of course this month, many of us are focused upon VictoriousFestival, but there are lots of alternative musical treats along theway, including some great acts at Live at the Bandstand, or forsomething more formal there’s the Royal Marines SummerConcert at the Guildhall – see What’s on, (p.54 & p.55). Or maybe you could just take a stroll, and enjoy the ambience- after all Southsea was made for summer.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

June / July 2019

Date: June 1st, 2019

As a lad I remember rugby tackling a boy who was shooting magpies with an air rifle. To be fair, he felt he was doing good, as magpies do predate on other bird’s eggs and chicks. Whereas one could argue, that we should interfere with nature as little as possible.

Regrettably, humans have been interfering with nature for thousands of years, and now the chickens, or maybe the magpies, have come home to roost, and we now face a climate change emergency and huge species loss. I therefore thought the very least we could do is to reflect these issues in our editorial content.

Neil Maxwell talks about us taking responsibility for the environment, Sarah Nunn writes about plastic litter and Tobi Stidolph has written a short piece about music festivals and their green credentials. In case you are wondering, Southsea Lifestyle is published on paper from sustainable forests and it’s printed in Portsmouth.

We are planning more articles about the environment for future editions, so if you want to tell us what you are doing to mitigate your impact upon the environment please get in touch, see below.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

April / May 2019

Date: April 8th, 2019

It is always good to have a theme for the intro to the magazine. It wasn’t difficult to find one for this edition – CHANGE. Not just the change of season, which has already got off to a flying start, but also in the community, exciting renovations at The Queens Hotel (p.8), change of ownership at Knight & Lee (p.24).

Then there’s personal change, opening a bakery without any experience of bread making (p.12), moving lock stock and dachshund from London to Southsea, see Welcome Home (p.18). Or how about trying to bring change and comfort to the homeless see (p.64).

I could go on, but I’m off to enjoy the Spring sunshine.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

February / March 2019

Date: February 2nd, 2019

I must have been an odd child, while other 12 year old boys were playing football or hanging out with their mates, I was collecting antiques. Within a year I had filled my bedroom with jumble sale finds, or broken furniture rescued from skips. My poor beleaguered parents, with no interest in such things, would be persuaded to take me on a tour of antique shops, where after much searching I’d spend my pocket money on a George III sixpence or a Doulton cup and saucer.

But then, as often happens in youth, the passion waned and my treasures were quietly forgotten. So I was fascinated to hear about the life of John Cameron who has continued his life long interest in antiques and is often seen on TV’s Cash in the Attic, see p.44. We’ve also included a review of some of the city’s antique and vintage shops p.46.

In fact, this issue is filled with people who have a passion for something, from playing rugby p.62, to making gin and rum p.40. Perhaps you have a keen interest that you’d like to share, if so, do get in touch?

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

December / January 2018

Date: December 3rd, 2018

This issue has Christmas stamped all over it – and why not? It’s been quite a year. So if you feel baffled by Brexit, troubled by Trump and concerned about climate change, sit back and contemplate some festive fun. If you fancy a night out, check out Lottie Maguire’s pub guide, p.26. Buying Christmas presents? We have a mini local gift guide, p.33. If it’s entertainment you’re after, then there are pantos galore in Emma Beatty’s Culture Vulture column, p.58.

John Worsey has written his annual Christmas story about a Father Christmas who’s life takes an unexpected turn, p.38.

Once the festivities are over, it might be time to think about improving your health, fitness and wellbeing for whatever 2019 might have in store for us. We asked some local health and fitness providers to talk about their particular discipline, so that you can choose the right form of exercise for you, p.62.

However you choose to spend the festive season, Southsea Lifestyle wishes you a very happy Christmas and a tranquil new year.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

October / November 2018

Date: October 6th, 2018

Serendipity – what a lovely word, say it three times and it’ll make you smile. But yes, almost by serendipity, we have a series of articles that take a look at both the history and the future of three of Portsmouth’s cultural institutions, Portsmouth Museum, The New Theatre Royal and The Guildhall. It’s easy to forget that although our theatres and museums never appear to change – from the outside at least, inside, these grand old monoliths are constantly reinventing themselves in order to remain relevant and exciting to our community. It makes for fascinating reading from p.30.

Running alongside, we have a second theme, keeping fit in the great outdoors, even as we enter the increasingly cold, darker months of autumn. Learn about the Portsmouth Triathletes on p.46 or Neil Maxwell talking about Parkrun on p.26.

Talking of keeping fit, Portsmouth has the ultimate challenge for runners – on Saturday 20th October the Simplyhealth Junior and Mini Great South Run takes place, with the adult Great South Run taking place the next day. Oh and for a bit more culture, there’s the Created in Portsmouth art trail 12th – 14th October, (see p.49).

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

August / September 2018

Date: August 1st, 2018

I recently heard David Attenborough recommending we all take time out in the natural world, as it is a great way to relax, and to stop focusing on sending emails, pondering Brexit, or descaling the kettle. I paraphrase, but you get the picture.

I’ve actually taken a lot of pleasure from a tiny pond that my son and I built in our back garden last year. This summer it’s all taken off, and the pond has become a top destination for damselflies, pond snails and water boatmen, but the real prize are the little frogs, which have developed from spawn that survived the cold spring. Nestled amongst the vegetation around the pond, the jewel-like frogs will suddenly jump if I get too close.

John Worsey has similar thoughts about walking his dog, Max, which helps him to relax and forget daily concerns, p.22. Fortunately, Southsea is a great place for R & R, and if the warm weather continues, we will all be taking siestas, wandering around town in our flip flops, and greeting each other with high fives. Do enjoy the rest of the summer.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

June / July 2018

Date: June 4th, 2018

Where else would we choose to lay half naked on a thin towel, next to complete strangers? The beach has a strange allure, and we often pay good money to sit on one on the other side of the world. But on a hot summer’s day you can’t beat Southsea seafront.

Ok, we don’t have white sandy beaches and an avenue of palm trees, but Southsea is one of the few remaining UK resorts to have not one, but two piers, a castle, a lighthouse and an aquarium. And if you’re desperate to feel sand between your toes, hop on the Hover and stroll to Ryde beach. In this issue, Kate Thompson chats to people who work on the seafront, and what they are hoping for over the next 12 weeks – or however long our summer lasts – p.38. Move inland and take a fresh look at Highland Road Cemetery, its history, and wildlife – p.68.

As we gear up for Victorious, read about one of its headliners, Paloma Faith – p.34. Don’t forget The Portsmouth Festivities from 15 – 24 June and if you love seafood, we are one of the supporters of the 2018 Portsmouth Seafood Festival at Gunwharf Quays on 30 June & 1 July. Southsea was made for the summer, lets make the most of it…

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

Play Up Pompey!

Date: April 3rd, 2018

Words: Chris Horton, Photos: Tony Palmer Photography

Portsmouth and football go hand in hand, two FA Cups and all that fabulous history. But the city’s sporting landscape goes far beyond Fratton Park, with people enjoying a wide range of sports, some not on most people’s sporting radar.


One such sport is roller derby, with the Portsmouth Roller Wenches flying the flag for the city. The sport sees teams of 5 rollerskating players compete in a series of ‘jams’ in which one designated player attempts to lap members of the opposing team. Described as something akin to ‘rugby on skates,’ it’s fast, brutal and a lot of fun.

Southsea resident Ali Lees – or to give her, her ‘Derby name’, The Duchess of Crutches, has recently come back from representing Poland at the Roller Derby World Cup. A New Yorker, Ali grew up watching the sport, but it is only since being based here that she has started playing. “It’s more than a sport, it’s a movement. We’re one of the world’s fastest growing sports and the women’s teams are leading the way”.

Based mainly at Havant Leisure Centre, Portsmouth currently have two women’s teams as well as a men’s team – the Scurvy Dogs. You can find details about upcoming bouts from their website. They also run ‘fresh meat’ taster sessions with the next scheduled event on April 15th at Highbury Sports Centre.


The Wenches and Scurvy Dogs aren’t the only teams in the city playing a sport originally from the US. The Portsmouth Dreadnoughts – named after HMS Dreadnought – are an American Football team, and compete in the third tier of the National League. The team now train and play at Havant RFC, and hold open training on Sunday mornings between 10am-3pm, so anyone can come along and join at anytime. There are both men’s and women’s teams, as well as an Academy team for 14-19 year olds. The senior men’s team begin their 2018 campaign at home to Swindon Storm on April 29th.


How about a game of Quidditch? Yes, that’s right, having been invented by JK Rowling for her Harry Potter stories, it has been turned into a real life sport – complete with broomsticks. Jack Latoy, head coach of the Portsmouth Strikers explains the sport’s history, “Founded in 2005 in USA, Quidditch started as an homage to the fictional sport, but quickly evolved into a mixed gender, full contact sport in its own right”. Fast forward thirteen years, and Portsmouth now boasts both a university and community team, playing and training at Bransbury Park every Sunday morning.

The appeal of the sport lies in its inclusiveness, stresses Jack. “Traditional sports and the culture surrounding them is learned from a young age. Quidditch doesn’t have this type of sports culture, if anything, its origins lie in nerd culture.” A sport for people who might not play much sport, I suggest? “Not quite” counters Jack “The competitive nature of the sport is what appeals to most players and even the broomsticks – originally included as a nod to the Hogwarts game – mean players are more careful with the contact element of the game, making mixed gender games possible”.

So the next time you hear someone tell Pompey to play up, just check out which sport they are referring too.


Posted in: Articles, Local & Community, Sport

City Spaces

Date: April 3rd, 2018

Words: Mark Harris. Photos: Miguel Blasco Martin

The importance of invigorating and well-designed communal spaces can never be under-estimated, especially in cities such as Portsmouth, the most densely populated city in the UK after London.

Public space is often at a premium, and as a country we have a tendency to think of design on a personal level rather than macro level. Many residents in Southsea have limited outside space of their own, so the importance of attractive communal spaces is vital in creating a healthy and cohesive city.

I have listed some of my favourite public spaces in Southsea, all share a common theme of having been recently upgraded in some way.

ROSE GARDENS Built on the site of Lumps Fort, a naval fort dating from the mid-19th century, The Rose Gardens provide an interesting example of the transformation of a disused site into an engaging public space. A lovely place to wander and sit under its sheltered pergolas. It is hard to believe that this tranquil space was once used as the training base for the Cockleshell heroes of World War II.

ROCK GARDENS with the new ornate arch by Pete Clutterbuck the sunken gardens offer a refuge from the busy seafront promenade and blustery Southsea winds. Sadly, some of the plants have begun to suffer from sea water inundation over the past few years, which the city’s gardeners are trying to rectify by improving the soil quality. The gardens were originally a shingle area purchased by the Portsmouth Corporation in 1928. They are laid out in an informal design, full of surprising vistas and a wide variety of plants that thrive in its microclimate.

HOTWALLS The recent transformation of these formerly disused Victorian artillery barracks by PLC Architects into 13 artist studios and a cafe has brought new life to the space between the Square and Round Tower – thanks to a coastal rejuvenation fund. It has also improved awareness of the pretransformation memorials and artworks such as “The Bonds of Friendship” sculpture, celebrating the links between Portsmouth and Australia – it was from our city that the First Fleet set sail in 1787 to create the penal colony that became Australia.

NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM GARDENS One of the consequences of the recent relocation of the Butterfly house at the NHM has been the reinstatement of the rear terrace. Thankfully the butterflies are benefitting from a new home, but the reconfiguration has also helped to bring a new balance to the relationship between the museum and its garden. Tucked away, off of Canoe Lake, these gardens offer assorted flower beds and two large oak trees, perfect for a picnic.

MILLENNIUM PROMENADE WALK This 3km walk from Clarence Pier to the Hard has opened up large parts of our waterfront that were closed to the public. One of my favourite parts is next to the Square Tower with some spectacular views of the Solent from the sculptured concrete benches, looking inland you have the majestic Garrison Church, Nelson’s statue and Grand Parade with some of Portsmouth’s finest domestic architecture for company. The walk is arguably one of the UK’s most successful millennium projects but its exposed location requires constant upkeep and care. There is always the scope for creating new public spaces of course, especially with the plans for the sea defences undergoing public consultation and how the proposed changes will affect the seafront. But, by identifying places with transformation potential, existing spaces can be upgraded, which has led to the nearly completed interactive fountain in front of Southsea Castle – and D-Day Museum.

You can visit Mark’s website at

Posted in: Articles, History & Architecture, Local & Community

Welcome Home

Date: April 3rd, 2018

Another Southsea Lifestyle reader throws open their doors and talks about the changes they have made to their home. Words by Kate Thompson

When Catherine Bradshaw first saw their future home in St Ronan’s Avenue, she admitted she felt a little downhearted.

The Victorian property was suffering from lack of love, and a disastrous layout that meant you effectively went outside to reach the tiny kitchen, passing through a room with a plastic roof covered in moss optimistically called a ‘breakfast room.’

“The beautiful Victorian French doors had been removed and somehow found their way onto the shed roof,“ explained Catherine.

It was only when friends who lived close-by shared their plans for their home that Catherine and partner John Santy started to see the potential – they worked with Joe Moser from the Design Team Studios to make their dreams a reality.

It took seven months to transform what had been a warren of ill-conceived small spaces, and transform it into the stunning, airy kitchen/dining/living area you can see today.

“We lived in the basement while the work was progressing with an eight-month old puppy just to make things more interesting,” she recalled.

While any major works can bring their challenges, Catherine and John enjoyed a relatively pain-free transformation process.

“We were both new to Southsea, and this project was an excellent introduction to the amazing community around us.

“One after the other, nice tradesmen came into the house and it was amazing how everybody knew everybody else,” she said.

Being south facing, the kitchen gets a lot of sun, as the couple run Aura Canopies, John was able to make and install a bespoke canopy to provide shade when needed.

Where possible, they used independent suppliers and tracked down a handle-less matt finish kitchen from a tiny supplier unearthed by

“We liked the kitchen-diner so much, we were inspired to renovate the rest of the house, we love it – I wouldn’t change a thing,” said Catherine.

Posted in: Articles, Home & Garden

April / May 2018

Date: April 2nd, 2018

Occasionally people refer to Southsea Lifestyle as being a hyperlocal magazine. Doesn’t sound very glamorous I know, but the term reflects the fact that our entire focus is upon the local community, something that we are very proud of. It does mean we don’t get to interview international movie stars, or review holidays in Barbados, but we’ve found over the years, that people in our tight knit community love seeing and reading about people and places on their doorstep.

The more space we give to our local writers, photographers, businesses and charities the more we get back in return and the quality can be amazing.

This issue is a particularly good example, we’ve managed to pack in some great articles about our public places, Albert Road, local sport, local wildlife, art & culture and so much more…

Regrettably, we can’t print everything that gets sent to us, which is why it’s worth checking out our ever growing website, where we have more space for more articles and events: or our Facebook page which is updated constantly.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

Indie Heavyweights Open Victorious Festival 2018

Date: March 13th, 2018

Victorious (24-26 August ‘18) – the UK’s biggest metropolitan festival, has revealed the bill for its opening night – a quartet of the best live party bands the UK indie scene has ever produced.

Last year’s inaugural Friday night Opening Party with Madness was such a resounding success, the organisers have decided to do it again – only bigger and better, with all the live action taking place in the huge main arena.

Needing no introduction whatsoever, this powerhouse of the best of British indie-rock is guaranteed to get the festival off to a fantastic start, with a host of legendary bands.

Twenty years since their formation, The Libertines are still at the forefront of British rock and with an immense back-catalogue of hits, and rumours of new material in the pipeline, these stone-cold legends are the perfect outfit to get things going.

Leeds’ finest, the veteran indie rockers Kaiser Chiefs, are renowned for their energetic live sets and amazing rapport with the audience, and their Friday night set is sure to be a Victorious highlight.

Doyens of the original Britpop explosion, Shed Seven aren’t merely survivors, they’re innovators. With rave reviews for their fifth studio album – Instant Pleasures – coming thick and fast, fans will be able to immerse themselves in brand new tracks, as well as rolling back the years with the Shed’s legacy of hits.

Ian Broudie’s Lightning Seeds are another classic Britpop act guaranteed to delight revellers young and old. With hits too numerous to mention, The Lightning Seeds are in the very DNA of UK indie pop, from dance floor fillers, to TV theme tunes to the world famous ‘Three Lions’ single that made the number 1 slot in both 1996 and 1998.

Festival director Andy Marsh said: “Our Friday night Opening Party was such a hit last year, it made sense to do it again, but make it even better. We’ve gone for a solid line-up of absolute indie legends. It’s going to be a brilliant night, and with tickets from just £30, you’d be mad to miss it!

“We’re going to announce the full weekend bill very shortly – and it’s going to be spectacular – but we couldn’t wait to reveal Friday, it’s going to be some party!”

  • Friday 25th August – Friday night Opening Party – 4-11pm*
  • Sat 26th August – 10am-11pm
  • Sun 27th August – 10am-11pm

With Friday tickets available from £30, and Saturday and Sunday at £35 a day, Victorious Festival continues to be one of the best value festivals in the UK. For tickets and details go to:

* Restricted site access – event includes Common Stage Arena and Seaside Stage Arena. Families welcome but please note, there will be no Kids Arena.

Posted in: Articles, Events

The New Wave

Date: March 13th, 2018

Words: Chris Horton, Images:

My lungs may be burning, my calves are aching and I’m seriously out of breath but there’s a huge smile on my face right now. I’ve spent the last 20 minutes cycling through Eastney towards Southsea seafront, past Southsea Common and up along Clarence Parade with a group calling themselves the South Coast Cycle Collective (or Soco-Cyco) and we’re heading to our last pub of the night. We chain up the collection of new and old racing bikes (one of which has been lent to me thi s evening) and head into Meat & Barrel ready for some more good beer and conversation.

Despite living in a city which is perfect for cycling – when was the last time you huffed and puffed up a hill in Southsea? Getting on two wheels hasn’t been something I’ve contemplated during my time by the sea, but tonight’s ride has been a real joy. The evening begins in Staggeringly Good’s taproom for a half before setting off to Eastney’s The Old House at Home. “It’s as easy as riding a bike”, I’m told as I begin to tentatively pedal whilst balancing on two wheels for the first time in nearly 20 years. A drinks stop and that aforementioned seafront ride later I’m ready to sit down with two members of the group, Alex Puttock and Michael Mackenzie, to talk all things bike.

Describing themselves as ‘a loose collection of coffee slurping, beer guzzling cycle enthusiasts’ the collective have been starting to take their shared passion for all things two wheeled more seriously over the last 12 months. “We’ve been doing this for years – going to bike events, enjoying a few drinks and we’d discussed for a long time about making it a little more formalised,” explains Alex before adding, “The Portsmouth area has a proud tradition of cycling with clubs such as Portsmouth North End and Fareham Wheelers, though Soco-Cyco see ourselves as bridging the gap between hobbiest and club racer”. “We want to welcome BMXers from the skate park, mountain bikers, road bike enthusiasts, the whole lot,” states Michael.

The group have been building up a steady social media presence over the last year, travelling across the country and into Europe, visiting various cycling events, whilst future plans include organising some official events locally – Alex’s father and Soco-Cyco member Ricky recently organised the Retro Ride on the Isle of Wight – as well as planning plenty more Southsea ‘bike socials’. Alex is eager to stress that the social aspect of the group is most important. “With us, it’s more about meeting like minded individuals then anything else”. “In a way”, muses Michael, “finding the right pub is just as important as the actual cycle route to get there”.

Posted in: Articles, Health & Fitness, Local & Community, Sport

A Life Without Plastic

Date: March 13th, 2018

Blue Planet has made us aware of plastic pollution in our oceans, but how can we stop using so much of it? Sarah Shreeve recently spent a month trying to live without the convenience of plastic…

I’d never taken the phrase ‘blood, sweat and tears’ particularly literally, but during my second attempt at shaving my legs with my new, all metal safety razor, I realised how accurate it was. I was two weeks into a month without plastic.

As a convenience junkie, the experience was a steep learning curve! My rules were: buy nothing that comes in, or is made of, plastic. Open nothing already at home that’s wrapped in plastic.

I made my preparations carefully, stocking up on more glass storage jars, buying Lush solid shampoo, conditioner, and a mysterious Japanese indoor composting system called a Bokashi Bin (plastic bin bags were probably my biggest concern as a flat dweller, with neither a compost heap nor a garden). I signed up for a veg box, and found a milkman to deliver juice and milk in glass bottles.

The first week was a baptism of fire. Suddenly, I didn’t just have to remember my laptop for work, I needed my reusable coffee cup, water bottle, cutlery and lunch box, not to mention a cloth bag and some empty Tupperware in case I went shopping! My housemate was shocked to discover a kilner jar of yoghurt nestling in our airing cupboard. Luckily, Blue Planet aired that evening, and she was quickly in full support. I soon realised that planning ahead was going to be my secret weapon in surviving a plastic-free month.

My favourite part of moving to a plastic free lifestyle was how my sense of community increased. I found myself moving from weekly supermarket shops to supplementing my veg box with produce from my local greengrocer, fishmonger and butcher- who were more than happy to fill my reusable bags or Tupperware. I suddenly knew people to chat to as I shopped or popped in for another apple. I was thrilled when I met the people at Southsea Bathing Co. and realised I could replace my strange-smelling shaving stick with a locally made shave soap! Somewhere in week four, the challenge went from learning curve to ‘normal life’.

I can genuinely say, I won’t be going back to my old ways of consumption. I may have chosen the most fullon route into a zero-waste lifestyle (most proponents advocate one change at a time), but once changed, it’s a simple and enjoyable way to live. I don’t manage 100% plastic free but I try my best. The extra I spend on local, seasonal food is balanced by buying less junk whilst out and about. I’ve met more people, am protecting a world I care deeply about, and have actually had an awful lot of fun along the way!


Posted in: Articles, Local & Community

Into the Trees…

Date: February 15th, 2018

Written by Lisa Guy and Sophie Lederer

We have a passion to inspire children to go out and play; to get muddy and have adventures; to be themselves and thrive; and to love and protect our wild world.

To do this, we want to bring you the Treebies – daring and busy little creatures who live in the trees in and around Whispering Wood and who, with their handy tool bag, look after the trees.

We have planned a collection of four seasonal books, the first of which – The Oakers’ Tale, set in Spring – is now ready to go to print. With beautiful illustrations and an activity in each book, and dyslexia friendly, we believe children (4+) and adults alike will be enchanted!

But we need your help and so have just launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise funds to cover the cost of printing and marketing The Oakers’ Tale. If you would like to support us then please visit our Crowdfunding Campaign. Even if you are not able to pledge, please help by sharing our campaign as widely as possible.

Please help us to take our children Into the trees with the Treebies and the magical world of nature!

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles

The Organ Project

Date: February 15th, 2018

Written by Stella Bahin

Thanks to the vision and generosity of earlier benefactors, including one W H Smith, a cathedral-like church stands to this day on Portsmouth’s oldest church site: St Mary, Portsea. It was built as a monumental replacement for the former church that replaced the former church where Charles Dickens, who was born nearby, was baptised. Which in turn replaced a former church.

Evidence points to a church having stood there as far back as over 1,300 years ago. It’s possibly been a sacred and central place for purposeful community gathering even longer. Within the tall-towered building upon that most ancient site today resides an integral, bespoke Walker organ, pictured.

We see only a small portion of the magnificent instrument. Beyond what’s visible, its workings are intricate and extensive. Any necessary maintenance and repair requires great specialism and therefore great, prohibitive cost.

This highly-acclaimed organ – which for the past 125 years has been supporting Portsea’s weddings, baptisms, funerals, congregations, choirs, scholars, and concerts – through time and toil, is failing. The Organ Project has been set up to rescue it, and Portsmouth, from its impending silence.

Last year, having written a poem about Blake and Parry’s ‘Jerusalem’ – incorporating words I’d expressly collected from festival-goers as Blake Fest 2017’s Poet in Residence – I wondered if a short film, including my communally-sourced poem, and the anthem, might help draw attention to the organ’s plight.

By January 2018 – produced by local playwright Roger Goldsmith, filmed and edited by local film maker Chris Jupp – the 4-minute film was complete. With me: former St Mary’s Junior Chorister, Beatrix Crinnion; Director of Music, Brian Moles; and our island’s endangered organ.

Find Talking Jerusalem on YouTube, via or at and please follow the JustGiving link for donations, even the smallest is welcome. We can save the organ.

Posted in: Articles, Local & Community

Jim’s life scientific

Date: February 2nd, 2018

Words by Kate Thompson

Suddenly science is the new rock ‘n’ roll and no longer just the preserve of boffins in white coats huddled around a Bunsen burner, prodding a petri dish.

The subject is officially cool – and scientist, BBC presenter and author Jim Al-Khalili can take a great deal of the credit for helping to make it more accessible to everyone.

His popular BBC Radio 4 programme The Life Scientific, television programmes and books have helped break down barriers by showcasing scientists and sharing the stories behind their theories and discoveries.

A long-time Southsea resident, Jim is a Professor of Physics at the University of Surrey, where he also holds a chair in the Public Engagement in Science.

“I got involved in science communication just as it became respectable in the UK. At one time you were either a serious academic scientist whose life revolved around writing papers and going to conferences, or you were slightly looked down upon as a popularist.

“Now we’ve got scientists like myself and my good friend Brian Cox and there are even Hollywood movies and TV sitcoms like The Big Bang Theory.

“Scientists are no longer just seen as nerdy types – it’s now a badge of honour,” said Jim.

Having graduated from the University of Surrey, he went on to do his PhD studies there, and following a couple of years post-doctorate work at University College London, he returned to Surrey to continue his research into nuclear physics.

These days he divides his time equally between the academic duties of research, teaching, and broadcasting – and admits he now has the perfect balance in his professional life.

“I had no ambition to be a broadcaster, but I do enjoy it. I seem to have a knack for explaining that doesn’t rely on jargon. It all started by being asked to appear on a local radio station and it has grown from there.

“I put myself in people’s shoes and really think about the language I can use to explain the latest concepts in physics,” he explained.

On March 8 at The Rifle near Fratton train station, Portsmouth Skeptics will host their monthly meeting and you can find out more about the latest mind-bending theories over a pint. Jim, who is Honorary President, will deliver a talk drawing on the content from his latest book What’s Next?

“The book pulls together leading experts on everything from the future of medicine to genetic engineering. There’s also some speculative science like looking at the possibility of teleporting and time travel. We might not be going to build a Star Trek teleporter any time soon but it is fun to look at what could be possible,” he said.

Jim’s association with Southsea goes back decades. His mum Jean grew up in Portsmouth, and her father worked in the dockyard. She met the man she was to marry when she was working as a librarian at the Central Library, and Sadik Al-Khalili borrowed books to support his engineering studies at the city’s polytechnic.

“I did my A-levels at Priory School 6th form and I was one of only three boys – my mother and my wife both went to the school and it is where Julie and I met.

“I’ve been commuting to Guildford and London for years, but have never felt the urge to move away. The main attraction for Julie and I is being by the sea and Southsea Common.

“I can walk to the train station and the shops are close by – we love the cinema and regularly go to Cinema No 6 in the dockyard, and Rosie’s Wine Bar is another favourite haunt altogether it’s a great place to live”.

For more details about Portsmouth Skeptics go to

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles, Local & Community

Face to face

Date: February 2nd, 2018

Ladi AdamekA new column, talking to people with passion for what they do. Born in The Czech Republic in 1985, Ladi Adamek trained as a mechanical engineer. He opened Bread Addiction with his partner Nikky Ondrouskova in 2014, its sourdough bread and pastries have won a huge following across the city and beyond.


Growing up I was more of a consumer than a baker! It wasn’t until I came to the UK in 2010. I realised there were so few artisan bakeries, back home they are on every corner. We began researching the idea of opening a bakery in Portsmouth. The E5 Bakehouse in Hackney was an inspiration. The founder Ben MacKinnon began baking from his home, using simple high quality ingredients. Today his Bakehouse is one of the best bakeries in London.


No, not really. We spent a couple of years practising, and I did a few short courses to learn new techniques in professional patisserie, but I’m 99% selftaught and still learning. Baking has a lot to do with planning and procedure, a lot like engineering.


It took a while to find the right shop but we paid for about 70% of the costs with our savings, the rest we borrowed from the bank. We now continue to reinvest in the business.


The ingredients are so simple: flour, water, salt and the natural bacteria or starter, which we refer to as ‘Mother’. We use the same Mother that we started with in 2014, which we feed and lavish with care, I’ve even taken it on holiday with me! The dough is left to prove, (the rest period before baking) for 48 hours, which makes the bread easier to digest, especially if people have a slight gluten intolerance. Most supermarket breads are made within a hour or two and are full of additives. But most of all I think sourdough tastes amazing!


Around 100 on weekdays and 200 at the weekend, we also supply some local restaurants and shops. Plus we make 200 – 300 cakes and pastries per day.


About 12, a mix of part-time and full-time. We usually train people on the job, we like to find people with enthusiasm rather than lots of experience. It’s quite a young team, we currently have a lad with us from France, who has come here under the Erasmus programme.


In the early days of the bakery, it used to be 3am, but now at 7am I start deliveries of bread and pastries to other local businesses, then return to the bakery to help our team.


We want to experiment with laminated brioche – which is like regular brioche but with extra butter, but still with a light texture. We like to try everything, as long as the product is good and we would be happy to eat it every day.


Bacon and eggs are a favourite.


We are waiting to see what’s going to happen as the UK leaves the EU, but in the meantime we need to try and create more space for increasing our baking capacity. But my main interest is maintaining the quality of what we do and being a good employer.

Posted in: Articles, Local & Community

Making their mark in Southsea

Date: February 2nd, 2018

Creative couple Nicky Gray and Mark Jones (aka Fark Fk), from The Tea Tray café in Southsea, have created a street gallery for talented artists. They tell Kate Thompson how it all started. Photos by Callum Hartley.

The next time you find yourself in the Palmerston Road precinct, be sure to check out the street art gallery that has taken up residence in the alleyway next to Debenhams.

What was once an uninviting cut-through to the parking behind the precinct, has been transformed – part of a street art revolution that is quietly taking place in Southsea.

“We always wanted to make an outdoor gallery space to show the art from internationally renowned artists and more homegrown talent as well.

“We wanted to create a space for artists and a place the public can enjoy too,” explained Fark.

While Fark Fk is known for his distinctive birds – he is delighted that a giant gull now adorns Southsea Pier, and his tagline ‘Be excellent to Each Other’ has become a feature in Marmion Road – Nikki, who owns The Tea Tray café in Osborne Road, is the one who brokers the deals with property owners and authorities to make it all happen.

“Who would have thought an alleyway behind Debenhams could look so great and it’s all thanks to the forward thinking property-owners who were happy for this to happen slap-bang in the middle of Southsea,” he said.

While London, Brighton and Bristol all have acknowledged street art areas, Fark believes it is only a matter of time before Southsea has a similar reputation.

He and Nikki are working on a hush-hush event that will put Southsea on the international street art map.

“We are working on bringing a major street art event here, and while I can’t say too much more about it at this stage, it would mean bringing some really big names here to engage with local street artists and the wider community,” he said. There are similar events and festivals happening in countries like America, Australia, Japan, and Norway.

While he is undoubtedly delighted that street art can now be found in pockets across the city (the Skate Park and former casino site in Osborne Road), Mark is also pleased with the work he has done with local schools.

A workshop at Harbour School saw kids with attention issues focusing on making art, while another project to create a giant map of Portsmouth in his signature style at the Portsmouth High Junior School was equally pleasing.

“One of the most satisfying things you can do is work with kids. It’s amazing to see them focus and switch – off as they get absorbed in creating something.

“It’s great to be able to show them the opportunities that can come from, art and share a different way of seeing the world. “I absolutely love it,” he said.

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles

Welcome Home

Date: February 2nd, 2018

In the tradition of Through the Keyhole, we are encouraging residents with beautiful, different and downright quirky abodes to throw open their doors to Southsea Lifestyle readers and share how they have made their mark on their home.

Words by Kate Thompson

“Ihope you don’t mind – I’ve baked some cakes for us to have with our tea while we chat,” said Steve Guthrie.

Clearly there’s no need to apologise for going to all that trouble – and I can report the rock cakes were indeed delicious.

Steve let us know about his home via a skilfully penned email that included the following enticement:

“I wonder if you might be interested in featuring my quirky little seafront apartment? It’s in one of the converted hotels opposite the Italian Gardens on South Parade.”

With such an intriguing introduction, it was a delight to hotfoot it round to his seafront pad.

Steve isn’t afraid of colour and his compact flat is testament to a confidence with a palette of hues that some wouldn’t dare apply to their walls.

“I need colour,” emphasised Steve. “There is a hell of a lot of blandness around isn’t there? So much beige…

“Too many people are decorating their houses for the people that might live in it after them – they are not doing it for themselves.”

Steve previously renovated a cottage on the corner of Stanley Street, giving it a cheerful nautical theme and sold it last March. Following the unexpected death of his father, Steve decided to take stock and have some time out of the rat race.

“I decided living small would set me free, and I set about refurbing my investment apartment so I could move back into it.

“Most of the apartments in these converted hotels are very similar, so I set about turning it into something more unique,” he said.

The gun metal grey kitchen cupboards are lifted by the riotous colour contained in the Mexican Talavera tiles.

“I like Mexican culture and because the kitchen doesn’t have any natural light, I wanted a big bold splash of colour, creating an industrial Mexican cantina type vibe,” said Steve.

“I’m pleased to say that apart from some pieces that I picked up on my travels, nearly all of the furnishings have been sourced locally.

“The kitchen and the bedroom furniture is by Victoriana; the sofa, the chest of drawers came from The Design House; a Southsea carpenter Tim Payne turned a window ledge into a dining table using a piece of oak he had lying around; and the carpets came from Carpet Right,” he said.

Posted in: Articles, Home & Garden

Feb / March 2018

Date: February 1st, 2018

I’m pretty much maxed out with the long cold nights and watching TV box sets wrapped in a blanket. I’ve had the flu bug that seemed to knock out half of Southsea, filed my tax return, and enjoyed the spectacle of the stormy weather on the seafront. Now I’m ready for lighter evenings and some warm sunshine on my back. But, good news, I have taken a peek at the calendar, and we are only about 6 weeks away from British summer time.

In the meantime, we can enjoy some invigorating dance productions and lively musicals at the Guildhall, NTR and The Kings Theatre ( see Culture Vulture p.62).

Don’t be put off by recent news that partners becoming obsessed with long distance cycling, or changing their diet, is causing marital breakdown, and turn to page 50, where Chris Horton describes an outing with the South Coast Cycle Collective, while Tara Knight talks persuasively about becoming a vegan. And did you know Jim AlKhalili, BBC presenter and science media star lives in Southsea? Kate Thompson chats with Jim on page 42.

Please remember we are now publishing every other month, so we will be back in April blue skies and sunshine.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

Welcome Home

Date: January 5th, 2018

In the tradition of Through the Keyhole, we are encouraging residents with beautiful, different and downright quirky abodes to throw open their doors to Southsea Lifestyle readers and share how they have made their mark on their home. Words by Kate Thompson.

Lindsay Harrison and her family survived for months on food prepared in a microwave or toaster and the dramas that can only unfold when you agree to the back of your house being removed to make way for something better.

There was the crack that was exposed, running down the length of their home, caused by a WW11 bombing raid.

The building company, Sea Salt 47 then discovered that the extension that had been added before they bought their Victorian midterrace home 18 years ago, had no foundations and was gradually moving away from the house.

But after weeks of patiently waiting for her beautiful new kitchen-diner to be completed (ably assisted by architect, Stephanie Marshall), the moment of truth had finally arrived.

The piece of furniture, around which the design for the whole room had been built, was brought down from the bedroom where it had been temporarily stored.

Affectionately now known as the ‘gin cupboard,’it is a sturdy piece of wooden furniture, that from the outside only hints at the stylish but practical interior within. The top lifts and folds to reveal glittering glasses, while the doors below open onto a wellstocked wine rack and storage for spirits.

Hubby Simon and a mate manfully manoeuvred the hefty cupboard down the stairs and shifted it into the kitchen with an expectant shove.

“Would you believe it was 5mm too big for the space that had been left for it,” she said.

Builder Steve was quick to remedy the situation. He unfurled a canvas roll that contained all his grandfather’s carpentry tools, lovingly treasured over many years, and shaved off the requisite excess from the edge of the wooden worktop he had recently installed.

“The thing I love most about my kitchen is that it includes special pieces of furniture like the ‘gin cupboard.’ We bought it from an antiques shop in Norfolk – we had been travelling up and down for weeks to see my mother-in-law in hospital and one day, when it was all getting a bit much, I just had to stop and think about something else.

“And that’s when we found it and now it is one of our most treasured items.”

Posted in: Articles, Home & Garden

Back to the future with Dr Trudy

Date: January 5th, 2018

Today it’s accepted that robots are likely to become increasingly more common in our lives, not just in industry but domestically – even as people’s companions. Ideas that seemed inconceivable when Dr Trudy Barber spoke about them in the early 90s. Kate Thompson finds out more.

Back in 1991 when Dr Trudy Barber completed her PhD, she admits people thought she was ever so slightly bonkers.

The Southsea based artist and musician explained her studies revolved around how people were using technology for their intimate pleasure – forming a physical relationship with a robot.

Fast forward 26 years and all the talk now is of how robots will soon be doing almost every type of work you can think of – journalism to retail – and Trudy is in great demand to speak at conferences on an international stage.

The self-styled Futurologist has spoken at a future media day in Zurich this year and took part in a think-tank in Italy delving into the Robot and Technology Manifesto as well as cyber culture salons in London and a podcast for the Guardian.

“It’s so nice to be asked to speak at these events. The stuff I was talking about almost 30 years ago is happening now and people are finally understanding what I was saying.

“There’s a whole new generation who are identifying with what I wrote all those years ago,” she said.

Far from being concerned about the role robots will increasingly take in our lives, Trudy believes it will create opportunities for people to find a more enriching life.

“The very way that people identify with the idea of a job, is going to dramatically change. There is going to be a rebirth of personal talents and we will have more time to develop ourselves,” she said.

An accomplished artist, who teaches at Portsmouth University and took part in Sky Arts Portrait Artist of the Year competition in 2013, she came to live in Southsea in 2006 and admits she absolutely loves living in the island city.

“I’m still discovering new places and there are so many fascinating people living here. There is a real creative scene,” she said.

While she is an advocate of new technology, Trudy admits she does have concerns for the younger generation.

“Mobile media is with us everywhere and for young people it is completely embedded in their lives – they cannot exist without it.

“So much so there has been a bit of a backlash and now you find people are having tech detox weekends. People are being asked to think outside of the digital realm and rediscover what it is to be human,” she said.

Dr Trudy Barber is Course leader of Media and Digital Practice at Portsmouth University. Her specialist subjects include emergent media, cyber/digital culture, cybersexualities, visual culture and art practice.

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles, Local & Community

Staying on Track

Date: January 5th, 2018

Luke Newton suggests ways of not just improving your fitness in the new year but staying motivated all year.

Christmas and the New Year is a time for reflection, and many people choose to set New Year’s resolutions – with varying degrees of success. Across the country, the surge of new gym memberships inevitably leads to non-active members later in the year – as people lose willpower, or find they don’t have enough time to work out.

We all know regular exercise is of huge benefit to our mental and physical wellbeing. But how can people get into the habit of exercising regularly without giving up before the end of January? Here are my top tips to being, and staying more active.

  1. Be kind to yourself. Set realistic goals and celebrate your successes.
  2. Keep it fresh. Ensure your training regime is enjoyable by mixing things up. Try new activities, workout with friends, and attend classes where you’ll find motivation by training with like-minded people.
  3. Workout first thing. Before the day gets away from you, go for that run or do the home HIIT workout. It might be hard initially getting out of bed, but you’ll feel great all day for the effort you put in. A great tip for getting out of bed – set your alarm and put it out of reach!
  4. “When you decide to do something, remind yourself that it is commitment not motivation that matters” says Steve Peters, author of The Chimp Paradox. When setting your goal, it is important to create a plan and structure that helps you stay committed.
  5. I have found that clients often benefit from booking their personal training appointments, or a place in a class, well in advance. In effect, they don’t need to find the willpower as they are already committed to turning up.

Luke Newton is Founder and Director of SWEAT Fitness Southsea.

Posted in: Articles, Health & Fitness

Beauty & The Beast: A Magical New Show For Portsmouth

Date: December 1st, 2017

Written by Emma Beatty

I’m sitting in Starbucks on Guildhall walk across the road from the New Theatre Royal, chatting to Scott Ramsay, its CEO and artistic director. He’s clearly very excited about this latest new Christmas show—written by him, no less. It’s Beauty & the Beast and sounds spectacular. All set in and around Portsmouth and full of local references. It opens on 14 December and runs to New Year’s Eve.

By coincidence , Beauty and the Beast is suddenly popular again. Emma Watson has just done the live-action remake of the Disney cartoon, and Primark is full of Beauty & the Beast homeware (duvets, mugs), but I digress…

Ramsay chose Beauty and the Beast because of its theatre heritage (it was last played at the New Theatre Royal sixty years ago in 1957). “This is not a straightforward panto, but a big family musical extravaganza – it’s going to be beautiful, spectacular, magical and fun, with big numbers, big routines and big set pieces”. He enthuses. “What’s it like?”, I ask. “not as dark as Phantom of the Opera, maybe even a bit zany, like Spamalot – full of energy and fun”.

Ramsay’s version of the classic tale is influenced by the core story, but is transposed to Portsmouth, the Forest of Bere, and Rowlands Castle in the early 1800s. A beautiful girl falls into penury after her father’s ship founders at sea, and by twists of fate she ends up in an enchanted castle with the mysterious beast.

In modern terms, it’s a slightly difficult, dark story – a romance between a captive woman and the monster she at first believes might attack her, but underneath the beast is a noble-hearted hero.

There may tears at the beast’s final death scene (before he’s brought back to life). Along the way, there’s an evil fairy, Ulrika; a good spirit Titania; and a baby Charles Dickens – a nod to Portsmouth’s literary history.

Some 140 costumes have been sewn up ready for the 30-something cast – with a cast of musical theatre professionals augmented with some special appearances by local children from the Giselle Academy of Dance and Theatre Arts.

The sets are rich and “beautiful” evocations of the elaborate and atmospheric Victorian-era stagings – a bustling dockyard scene at Camber dock for the opening, a magical blue and purple forest on the way to the enchanted castle that glitters in gold, with a ‘breathtaking’ terrace scene looking out over the Solent.

Ramsay was appointed to the newly revamped theatre, earlier this year. In that time, he’s attracted increased investment of £250,000 per year from Arts Council England – one of the biggest increases nationally.

The monies will help propel the theatre into its next new phase, allowing it to create and commission new work – for the first time in many years. He passionately wants to bring new audiences into the historic old theatre that’s been in Guildhall Walk since 1854.

And what for next year? Ramsay is already working on a new production of Peter Pan, moving forward a century from the Victorian to the Edwardian era. It sounds magical, but I can’t wait to see Beauty first.

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles

The Queens Hotel

Date: December 1st, 2017

Written by Kate Thompson

Southsea’s grandest hotel is undergoing a £7m renewal that will reveal once again her regal splendour and regenerate a corner of the city that has seen better days. Kate Thompson finds out more. Photos: Johnny Black.

Afairy tale transformation is underway at the Queens Hotel in Southsea, and the sleeping beauty is being returned to her original glory.

The ornate finery of the turn of the century exterior has always hinted at her elegant past, and despite the neglect of recent years, her Edwardian Baroque grandeur still commands respect.

The new owners – a consortium led by hotelier Farid Yeganeh, are passionate about the future for the Queens Hotel. Speaking to Farid, the excitement is palpable.

“I have been in hotels all my life,” he explained. “My parents were hoteliers and I bought the Royal Beach Hotel 14 years ago.

“I love the industry and becoming the owner of the Queens Hotel has given me a renewed excitement.”

While there have been major challenges to overcome – only 60 per cent of the rooms had hot water when they took over in April, and the top floor had been closed for years – there have been many rewards already.

A beautiful marble ‘chequer board’ pattern floor has been revealed in the lobby and has instantly transformed the ambience of the hotel.

“We’ve spent nearly £1m so far and we are being rewarded as quickly as we are spending the money,” said Farid.

Once the painstaking work is completed by 2020, the Queens Hotel will have 104 bedrooms and the aspiration is for her to be Southsea’s only 4-star hotel.

“We want to create a classic style like the Rosewood Hotel in London.

“We are using a carpet maker in the North who uses designs dating back to the 1800s, and we would rather use good, solid secondhand furniture in different styles to complement the building,” he explained.

Central to their plans is their vision for the Osborne Road elevation.“We want to transform the street scene and we have plans for a delicatessen and a supper-club diner where China Town used to be in the basement.

“There will also be a spa with an indoor swimming pool, and the original entrance will be opened up to provide private access to the penthouse apartments we are planning for the top floor,” he said.

Of course, a hotel is about so much more than just bricks and mortar (however fine they may be) – it is the staff who ensure a warm welcome and set the tone.

Duty Manager Callum Buckland is fizzing with excitement about the transformation that is underway. A student of architecture, he has been researching the history of the hotel. While chef, James Martin is building a reputation for great food, and clearly loving the challenge. (His sous chef, Michael Horrell shared a morsel of smoked, rare beef that was tender and delicious while we chatted).

“In January, we will be auditioning new acts for a programme of events in 2018. The Queens is made for live music and will breathe even more life into her walls.

“Every day she is revealing something new to us – we are all on a journey, and its one we would like everyone to join us on,” said Farid.


  • Southsea House 1861 – a large private home was situated in an almost identical position to the front half of the existing hotel
  • 1865/70 First Queens Hotel was built converting the original house
  • 1901 Fire tore through the hotel destroying the building and claiming the lives of two chambermaids
  • 1903 A grander Queens Hotel rose from the ashes
  • 1910 Queens Hotel almost doubles in size
  • Famous Guests have included Sir Winston Churchill who stayed for several nights; Charles de Gaulle; Rowan Atkinson filmed an episode of Mr Bean in Room 426 and Joan Collins filmed scenes for The Time of Their Lives in the Elizabeth Ballroom

Posted in: Articles, History & Architecture, Local & Community

Postcards From My Neighbourhood

Date: December 1st, 2017

EXHIBITION DATES: Wednesday 7 February Sunday 15 April 2018
SUBMISSION DEADLINE: Saturday 3 February 2018
CELEBRATION EVENT: Saturday 10 February 2018, 14:00hrs

Draw, paint or photograph what you love or loathe about your neighbourhood.

Postcards From My Neighbourhood is a collaboration between Aspex and Southsea Lifestyle, encouraging people of all ages and abilities living within the PO postcode to visually respond to where they live.

All entries will be exhibited at Aspex, Portsmouth’s leading contemporary art gallery, located in Gunwharf Quays. Out of the submissions, a select few will feature within the February/March edition of Southsea Lifestyle and online.

Following the exhibition, the postcards will be gifted to the Portsmouth City Archive.


  • Entries must be A6 in size (105mm x 148mm)
  • Entries must be 2D, but in any media
  • Entrants must live within the PO postcode district
  • Entries will not be returned following the exhibition’s completion, but will be gifted to the Portsmouth City Archive

For artwork to be exhibited at the celebration event, entries must be received by Saturday 3 February 2018. Aspex will continue to accept and exhibit artworks after the submission deadline.

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles

The Toymakers’ Apprentice

Date: December 1st, 2017

A story for Christmas by John Worsey. Illustration by Lorna Apps-Woodland

I first saw Issie Oke on the day I moved to Southsea. While I squeezed boxes through my new doorway, ten-year-old Issie hurtled up and down the street on a scooter, singing a made-up song.

In the years that followed, she loved to pamper my dog whenever she saw us out walking. One day, she surprised us with a beautiful new name tag, which she had hand-carved from driftwood. She was a kind, attentive girl with a warm smile and a generous heart.

She seemed to vanish a few months ago. I asked her mum whether she had gone away to college.

“No,” Olu replied. “She’s doing an apprenticeship. Something very special.”

I was intrigued and, as I found out more, amazed.

“Do you think she’d talk about this for Southsea Lifestyle?” I asked.

“You’ll have to write a letter and ask.” Olu gave me the address. It was just three words long.

In November, Issie and I chatted over coffee and cake at The Tenth Hole. “I’m only back in Pompey for a couple of days,” she explained. “It’s about to get really busy at work.”

“So, what’s it like?” I asked. “The North Pole?”

“Freezing,” she grinned. “And brilliant.”

“How on earth did you get the job?”

“I saw an advert online,” she said, unexpectedly. “They told me later most people don’t bother applying, ‘cos they reckon it’s a joke. But lots do, still, from all over the world. They only take three of us every year. It’s hard to fit more in, ‘cos we need much bigger beds and stuff.”

“Bigger… than the elves?”

“Yeah,” Issie said, as if it was perfectly normal, which I suppose it is to her. “They’d love it in here, you know. An elf meal is one course savoury, three courses of sweet. I put on about a stone in my first week. So I started riding reindeer and that keeps me fit!”

“What are you learning?”

“All the traditional crafts – wooden soldiers, rocking horses, china dolls, teddy bears. They teach lots of different disciplines. Then there’s more modern stuff. We have to source the electronic bits kids want these days, so I help with supplier negotiations.”

“So the elves wouldn’t make, um, an iPad?”

“No way. They can do that cheaper in China, so we get it shipped to the Pole by express sleigh. We’re in the artisan toy business. Heirloom quality. But you can still play with what I make. You’ve got to be able to play with it. Otherwise it’s not Christmas, is it?”

“I suppose not,” I said. And a memory popped into my head.

Issie’s parents were loading a big tea tray into the boot of their car, one snowy morning. Little Issie, wrapped up in scarf, gloves and bobble hat, excitedly told me, “We’re going up Portsdown Hill! Look, I made a sled.”

I took a closer look and, sure enough, the tea tray had been modified with two sleek wooden runners and a set of curved handlebars.

Young Temi pulled shyly on my coat sleeve and whispered, “My sister is the best at making stuff.”

The smell of coffee brought me back to the present, where Issie was finishing her chocolate cheesecake. She sat back with a contented sigh.

“This is the perfect job for you, isn’t it?”

“Yeah,” she nodded. “There’s two things I love making, more than anything in the world. I love making cool stuff. And I love making people smile.”

Writing this, I can’t help but grin at how life works out. Issie Oke, the toymaker’s apprentice, honing her craft in Santa’s workshop. She’s there right now, working hard to make people happy. It’s what she’s always done. For Issie, it’s always been Christmas every day.

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles

December 2017

Date: December 1st, 2017

As we approach the festive holidays, do we look back over the past year or forward to the next? I prefer to look ahead, and you will be pleased to know I’ve been dusting off some favourite self improvement books for something inspiring to end the year with.

And here it is… If you want to predict your future, examine your actions now. If you are concerned about your future career path or income, look at what you do each working day. Want to predict your future health – look at your eating and exercise habits today. Seems obvious perhaps, but it helped me realise the time for change is now, not at some mythical point in the future.

Which is one of the reasons we’ve decided to revert to publishing Southsea Lifestyle bi-monthly, which means that our next edition will be out on 3rd February. We think it will enable us to create an even better magazine, in print and online, and give us a healthier work-life balance.

As ever we’d like to thank all our readers and advertisers for supporting us in 2017 and look forward to appearing on your doormats once more in 2018.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

Welcome home

Date: November 5th, 2017

Written by Kate Thompson

In the tradition of ‘Through the Keyhole,’ we are encouraging residents with beautiful, different and downright quirky abodes to throw open their doors to Southsea Lifestyle readers and share how they have made their mark on their home…

ECLECTIC is a tricky look to pull-off, but interior designer Lesley Taylor’s practised eye ensures her Southsea home is the perfect backdrop for her ‘60s and ‘70s design artefacts.

“There are no right angles in this house – the whole top end of the road is on a skew. When I moved here I needed more space and that meant I had to buy more furniture.

“Luckily Southsea is great for picking up bargains. I went to Fawcett Road and Highland Road and got some really quirky bits and the look has just evolved from there,” she explained.

Put ting old with new and overlaying a smattering of treasured items is key to creating rooms that have harmony and Lesley admits she likes to encourage her clients to inject some personality into their living space.

“Some people just want a white box (although there aren’t that many in Southsea). I work with commercial clients such as the Seacrest Hotel and I like to think I help them to bring their character into the interior,” she said.

More than just making rooms look perfect, Lesley’s study of interior design has helped her to embrace the concept of material culture and how you can understand so much about a person through the clothes they wear and the space they call home.

Ask Lesley what’s the one article she would save in (God forbid) the event of fire and without missing a beat she replies. “My framed photo of Leslie Phillips.

“He was appearing at the Kings Theatre in the 50s and my mum snuck up the back stairs and knocked on his dressing room door.

“He opened it and stood there in his dressing gown, while my Mum (who’s sadly no longer with us) took his photo,” she said.


“Eclectic can be quite boring if you put 12 empty frames on the wall – so I advise people to put some personality into their rooms. Mix new and second hand frames and include a photo or drawing that really means something to you.”

Posted in: Articles, Home & Garden

Breaking through the clouds

Date: November 5th, 2017

Written by John Worsey

Remember, remember the fourth of November. No, that’s not a typo. 4th November 2016 was a day that changed my life. For a while, I feared everything was in ruin. Today, I see it was just an unpleasant catalyst for a much-needed, positive change.

It began at around 40,000 feet, flying home from a holiday in sunny Tenerife. I’d been glad to get away from the ‘real world’ for a while, with the Brexit vote and the possibility of President Trump breaking down all kinds of certainties. Flying back to a relentless work schedule, with no days off due until Christmas. I had hoped that my batteries would be recharged. Instead, I felt as if I was breaking.

The trigger was the sight of a passenger wearing one of those pollution masks you see in news footage of congested Chinese cities. In my anxious state, this seemed to prove something: There’s a sickness in the air. We’re trapped with it. There’s no escape from this plane.

My heart started pounding, my breath caught in my throat. I tried to distract myself with my headphones, but I couldn’t let go of the anxious thoughts. Awful scenarios of a plagued plane flooded my terrified imagination. This happened even though I knew, on some level, what was really going on: I’m having a panic attack. I just couldn’t make it stop.

I spent an hour at the back of the plane, as my wife helped me to calm down. Panic passed, as it always will. We landed, and Britain was much as we had left it: grey, cold, contagion-free.

I had felt such fear before. In 2006, following a spate of anxiety attacks, I managed to get some cognitive behavioural therapy on the NHS, which halted when my therapist left to take up another job. Still, I got back on an even keel eventually and that, I thought, was the end of that. But I hadn’t embedded a proper way of dealing with anxiety in my life. Ten years later, it came back with a vengeance, and I felt doomed to repeat the cycle forever.

If there is a modern plague, it may well be anxiety. Many things about the way we live and work are geared towards incubating worry. I’m sharing this story because you may sometimes suffer overwhelming anxiety yourself. If you don’t, you almost certainly know someone who does. Now I want to tell you what has made a difference for me.

A few days after panic at 40,000 feet, I visited a website, I downloaded their app onto my phone, and so began an ongoing journey into the world of mindfulness and meditation. I’ve used the app every day since and it has been genuinely life-changing.

Mindful meditation has given me a wholly different way of understanding anxiety. It has helped me to be more aware of the thoughts and feelings that drift through our minds like clouds across a clear blue sky, and to see troubling emotions in a new light. It’s not that I never feel anxious anymore, but I am anxious less often, and less severely, because I have a changed relationship to my worries. I’ve started to stop identifying with them, and get caught up in them less often.

If you’re feeling down or anxious, I urge you to give mindfulness a go. It is far better experienced than explained. I started on 7th November 2016; a day I will always remember. It’s the day things began to get better.

Posted in: Articles, Health & Fitness, Local & Community

New for old

Date: November 5th, 2017

Written by Mark Harris

Next year is the 20th anniversary of the English publication of Georges Perec’s Species of Spaces and Other Pieces. Why should the work of a relatively unknown but influential French writer still be relevant today? Well, the book is primarily about how the residents shape the identity of a town or how the town affects the identity of its citizens.

There are perhaps very few places in the UK where this sense of identity can be more keenly felt than in Portsmouth & Southsea. But where does it come from? Is it from being an island city, its crowded streets, its history, or the endless horizon of the sea?

One of the great things about Southsea is that it continues to evolve, whilst not forgetting about its past. A walk along the seafront will lead to the re-opened South Parade Pier or, further west, to the Hot Walls and the new artist’s studios and cafes that were, until recently, just an idea. Of course, more is to come. It wasn’t that long ago that Winston Churchill and Charles de Gaulle stayed at the Queen’s Hotel, could those days return with the new plans for the historic building? Will the Portland Hotel finally come back to life?

But there are numerous buildings in the city that have already evolved and have been successfully adapted for contemporary use. Here are a few of Portsmouth’s buildings that I particularly admire, both as pieces of architecture in their own right, but also how they have been successfully adapted and given a new lease of life.

Castle Road Clock Tower

The focal point of Castle Road, the Clock Tower is now used by various creative enterprises but many readers will remember the previous occupiers, the Fleming brothers’ antiques shop. In fact, since the building opened in 1903 it has been home to a car showroom and another antique dealer, Ernest Smith, whose name still survives on the clock. Last year it was awarded the city’s best restoration project by the Portsmouth Society.

The Old Dairy, Wilton Place

The conversion of the Old Dairy, by RBA Architects, provides an inspiring example of what can be achieved with sensitive and imaginative remodelling. Here, a small Victorian dairy was converted into four individually designed mews houses in 2010.

The Grave Diggers Pub, Highland Road

According to recent reports, 20 pubs a day are closing throughout the UK, and with Portsmouth’s rich tradition of public houses, this has provided many opportunities for conversion projects. One of the most successful examples is the former Grave Diggers pub in Highland Road. Architect Carl Leroy Smith’s award-winning conversion, with building work by CT McCann in 2013.

St Ronan’s Road Substation

An ingenious conversion, by PWP Architects, has seen a 1930s substation converted into a new house that retains the brick facade of the original one storey building with the addition of two futuristic glass reinforced plastic pods on the roof.

The Parade Tea Rooms on Western Parade

Another example of a creative re-use of a redundant substation. Opened in 2015 by the proprietor Mark Hogan and overlooking the Common the tea rooms have been successfully trading ever since.

Catherine House (formerly Zurich House)

Following the relaxation of planning laws, projects are not just restricted to small building types, which has allowed for the transformation of the 1973 glazed fronted Zurich House office building into a 405 bed, student halls of residence, (2017). Unfortunately, the newly built Greetham Street Halls of Residence, with it’s distinctive yellow top floors, was nominated for this year’s Carbuncle Cup, an annual award for the worst buildings completed in the UK.

The Cell Block Studios

Tucked away between Victory Gate and the Visitor Centre at the Historic Dockyard a former Victorian Naval prison has been skilfully converted into small office units. Perfect for digital, creative businesses, studios are available for exclusive use or to be shared with another ’inmate’.

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles, History & Architecture

Putting the plus into size

Date: November 5th, 2017

Written by Kate Thompson

David WestWHEN David West of Portsmouth was given the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to go on a luxury holiday and be filmed for a new TV reality show about plus size bodies, he had no idea how positive the experience would turn out to be.

“April this year, after a bad day at work, I noticed an advert in the local paper asking for plus size men and woman to go on a luxury holiday. Without thinking – I applied straight away and within two weeks, after some scary casting interviews, I was flying out to a tropical island in the Bahamas called Eleuthera. Excited but nervous I had absolutely no idea what was about to come,” said David.

After being kept separate from the seven other contestants by show producers for 24 hours, David finally arrived at his destination – the world’s first and only Plus-Size Resort.

“I was totally overwhelmed but decided quickly to just embrace it and enjoy every moment as I will never get this opportunity again.”

Over the next 10 days, David spent every moment with his fellow ‘guests’ getting to know each other and tackling daily challenges such Yoga, Canoeing and even a Fashion Show.

“These things would seem perfectly normal to attempt while on holiday for most people but throw in some confidence issues and weight concerns and it takes on a whole new life,” he confided.

Out of all the contestants David was the lightest in weight at just over 18 stone and the heaviest was around 36 stone. Mentor Mel helped guide the group to start accepting their bodies and become more body confident.

“Now the show has completed filming I have fully embraced my body and all of its imperfections. I truly believe that you can learn to love your body and that everyone is beautiful, we just come in different sizes.

“I cannot wait for people to see this show. It may be controversial – and people may not agree with the shows glorified acceptance of the plussize community – however for me it changed my life and I will always be thankful and proud of what I have achieved.”

18-30 Stone Holiday is available to view on ITV Hub until 21st November.

Posted in: Articles, Local & Community

November 2017

Date: November 2nd, 2017

In our loft, carved into a wooden beam, you can just make out the names and dates of the men who built the house in around 1898. On another beam, scratched in biro, someone has written ‘Dave woz here 1978’. The front step worn away by countless footsteps, the redundant picture rails and fireplaces are all reminders of former inhabitants. I think it’s fair to say that most of our city’s housing stock is Victorian, or at least pre-Second World War. But what to do with the numerous commercial buildings that are no longer fit for purpose? Mark Harris takes a look at some of his favourite historic buildings that have been re-used and re-fitted for our time (p.8).

I’m sure previous generations would have had much the same worries that we have to contend with, but it was probably never quite as busy and as stressful as life has become today. John Worsey, speaks about anxiety, and how he has learnt to cope with it (p.43). While David West talks to Kate Thompson about a glamorous holiday in the Bahamas, all filmed for TV but confronting issues surrounding body weight and self confidence (p.64).

We think it all makes for a thought provoking read. As ever, if you have a story to tell, or maybe you would like your home to appear in our Welcome Home feature (p.16), we’d love to hear from you.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

Half Term: Low Cost, Maximum Fun

Date: October 20th, 2017

Written by Girl About Southsea

It feels as though we have only just sent the kids back to school in their new oversized uniforms, yet somehow it’s almost half term already. It really shouldn’t be a surprise to us parents as the school holidays are approximately every six weeks. But after just settling into the new term time routine after the six weeks summer holidays, we’re back to the drawing board planning activities and days out to keep the kids busy.

The October half term is always a tricky one, being the first of the academic year after the summer holidays and having spent what may feel like a small fortune on clubs, camps and days out, and the break just before Christmas. Plus with unpredictable autumn weather it can sometimes be difficult to plan activities. So the October half term tends to be a little more low cost, but always maximum fun.

When the autumnal weather is a little unpredictable, some of our favourite indoor activities are crafts and playdough. Like most kids, mine love to be creative and make a mess with artistic creations, leaving me to pick up the Playdough and paper cuttings from the floor. We also love experimental baking and with half term being so close to Halloween, it’s the perfect time to make spooky cookies.

When the weather is a little more predictable we love to head to the beach, racing across the esplanade on scooters before a treasure hunt, looking for precious stones and pretty shells to bring back and place in the garden, or on the window sill.

Canoe Lake is one of our go-to’s. It’s such a diverse and family centric location that can keep the kids entertained for hours. The big playpark is great for kids of all ages, from a sand pit, to a zip wire, there is something for them all. Not forgetting the lake for crabbing and pedalo swans.

Southsea Castle is a fantastic piece of history for the kids to explore and enjoy. The cannons, architecture, historic displays inside and the views outside make it a really enjoyable trip out for all. Portsmouth Museum and the Natural History Museum are also great places my kids enjoy visiting. The kids are so inquisitive and love to learn and find out new things, the museums are the perfect place.

We are so lucky to live in a place where there are so many things to do, with family activities on our doorstep all year round. Many are free or low cost, and of course, always maximum fun.


Posted in: Articles, Family, Local & Community

Songs and Stories

Date: October 5th, 2017

It has been a big year for Southsea songwriter Becky Jerams. Not only has she chased the Eurovision dream (cowritten track Try made the first televised heats for Lithuania this year), reached #7 in the Global Viral Spotify Charts with Surrender by Japanese girlband FAKY, had two songs placed on a Dutch teen movie and scored the ending theme song for the most recent Gundam anime, but she has also had a worldwide album number one with K-Pop supergroup Red Velvet. The track You Better Know which she wrote with Japanese hit-maker Kanata Okajima and Swedish producer Pontus Persson is the second song on mini album The Red Summer and with 120k downloads and millions of streams has become the best selling BSide in the girl band’s history.

Becky started out writing and performing acoustic songs locally in Portsmouth and after being signed to a publisher she began to attend songwriting camps around Europe where she grew her contacts within the Asian pop market. At first, the pop sound of Japan and Korea felt like a world away from her usual style, but she soon fell in love with the slick productions, quirky melodies and sheer originality of this booming market. She has spent the last few years building up a catalogue of songs and hopes to keep adding to her list of placements.

On top of songwriting, Becky’s love of words and storytelling has led her to self-publishing her own series of teen fiction novels. Reasons To Love A Nerd Like Me and Could You Love An Apple? both reached Top 10 in the YA LGBT chart on Amazon Kindle and she is currently working on a brand new book with a theme of music and female friendship.

With so many creative projects under her belt, going back to her retail based day job feels a little like leading a double life. But she wouldn’t have it any other way.

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles

The Portsmouth Wrestler

Date: October 5th, 2017

Written by John Worsey

Portsmouth Wrestler

Not long ago, Rishi Ghosh spent his days as a social worker, selflessly supporting vulnerable people to live fuller lives. But by night, he transforms into the dastardly Prince of Mumbai. Dressed in ostentatious regal robes, this conceited villain selfishly scours Britain’s wrestling rings; ruining other competitors’ dreams in the quest for personal glory.

Last year, the Prince of Mumbai won five championships, two trophies, a whole lot of boos… and a bellyful of laughs. Because for all his villainy, his real goal is entertainment.

Portsmouth Wrestler“I’m a comedy villain,” Rishi explains, out of character, over a pot of tea in his Southsea home. “How comical it gets depends on who I’m working with. All crowds are different, so how are you going to deliver what they like and get them to make noise?”

He might carry off those robes like he was born to wear them, but Rishi was actually born right here in Portsmouth. He learned to wrestle here too, training 10 hours a week from the age of 15, at the old Frontier Wrestling Alliance Academy, under Mark Sloan. Several Academy alumni, including current WWE NXT Champion Drew McIntyre, have gone on to global careers.

Today, Rishi’s in-ring career spans eight promotions, including Revolution Pro Wrestling (RPW) which runs shows at Portsmouth Guildhall, the Mountbatten Centre and around the UK. He recently stepped away from social work to focus on training tomorrow’s aspiring pro wrestlers. As well as being one of the trainers at the RPW Portsmouth School of Wrestling, which runs regular classes for all ages in Fratton, he also has a flourishing business offering one-to-one tuition.

Since he started providing personal wrestling training in April, three of Rishi’s trainees have already made their professional debuts. Two had never wrestled before! “I’m unbelievably proud of their dedication, hard work and how they handle themselves as human beings.”

Rishi also works as a disability sports coach, which means he can help people with all kinds of physicality perform at their best. “Some of my trainees want to be pro wrestlers and take it very seriously. Others are fans and just want to give it a go. I make sure they have a good workout, learn great techniques and have fun. Some are natural athletes, some aren’t, but the main ingredient is dedication. If you want to make it to the circuit, you’ve got to be training in the ring at least once a week and honing your craft. There are so many different aspects to it – character, psychology, technical wrestling, moves, sequences, timing. Showmanship is a huge part of it.”

A consummate showman himself, Rishi says, “I used to be embarrassed to tell people I was a pro wrestler, but wrestling has become cool. It’s never been so big in Britain in my lifetime.”

If you’re interested in getting to grips with grappling, you can find Rishi on Facebook by searching for “Pro Wrestling Training – Private sessions” or find RPW Academy classes at

Posted in: Articles, Local & Community

Welcome Home…

Date: October 5th, 2017

Written by Kate Thompson

With such a cool, creative vibe happening in Southsea, it stands to reason there must be some pretty fabulous homes out there to intrigue and inspire us all. In the tradition of ‘Through the Keyhole,’ we are encouraging residents with beautiful, different and downright quirky abodes to throw open their doors to Southsea Lifestyle readers and share how they have made their mark on the place they call home.

When Jo MacManus was buying her Victorian home in Festing Road three years ago, she admitted there were a few sleepless nights.

“It had been a student house and every room was a bedsit with its own kitchen – there was an over-riding smell of Pot Noodles and unwashed socks,” she cheerfully recalled.

To make her dreams for the five bedroom home come true, she enlisted the help of Joe Moser from the Design Team Studios and builder Tom Fricker (TWF Building Services).

Jo is justifiably most proud of the stunning open plan kitchen with its industrial finish brought to life by the edgy Crittall windows that give it a warehouse feel. “When I told the electrician I wanted surface mounted ducting, he told me he had spent his whole career hiding that sort of thing.

“The Crittall windows were my biggest outlay but they are my greatest joy,” she said. Having masterminded this transformation, Jo is now looking for the next challenge and her house is currently on the market.

Here’s Jo’s top-tip…

“With a major project like this you have to rip the place apart before you put it back together. I would advise not to do what I did and live on site while the work is being done. It’s not good for you or the builders.”

Posted in: Articles

The King’s Anniversary

Date: October 5th, 2017

Written by Chris Horton

The King's Theatre

This month sees the 110th anniversary of one of Southsea’s most loved establishments; The King’s Theatre. A venue with a very special place in Southsea resident’s hearts I’m lucky enough to be given a tour by two of it’s long serving archivists, Chris Grant and Peter Rann. Both men are fountains of knowledge, bombarding me with a whole host of wonderful facts and stories they’ve uncovered detailing the last one hundred years or so. “We need to document the history of such an important theatre not just for Portsmouth but on a national level too” states Peter explaining how the theatre’s architect, Frank Matcham, was a world renowned theatre designer who also designed The London Palladium.

Sitting in a box seat – incidentally not the ‘best seat’ in the house according to Peter, “These were to be seen in, rather then to actually see” he reveals – I mention my first experience of The King’s was actually on film. The famous Pinball Wizard scene from Tommy was shot here with The Who and Elton John’s performance now part of film musical folklore. With that, the pair proceed to rattle off a who’s who of those that have trodden the boards including such luminaires as Houdini, Laurel and Hardy and Gracie Fields. “Oh, and Dr Who himself!” adds Chris “Well, William Hartnell once appeared in a production but that’s close enough” he chuckles. It even bore the weight of six elephants at one point and although nothing quite so exotic has been witnessed since I’m casually reminded that last year’s Tosca performance did include a Golden Eagle.

I’m after more facts and Chris is quick to suggest another. “Did you know there’s a pond under the stage? It’s built over a spring. Matcham realised this so built the stage on brick stilts so that it wouldn’t rot.” Rumours of band members having to get a boat to make their way to the orchestra pit are disappointingly untrue though the water is technically a spring and therefore potentially drinkable, but I think I’ll stick to my interval ice cream next time.

Over the next half hour I’m told how it only took a year to build the theatre – looking at the intricate ceiling designs this seems incomprehensible with many of the original features still surviving. Performances carried on throughout the war with a light on the side of the stage signalling any air raids. The productions would continue, though audiences were offered the chance to leave if they wished. “Most stayed” stresses Chris.

Despite being a fascinating insight into such a grand building Peter is at pains to stress the continued role it plays in Southsea today. “The character of the theatre hasn’t changed over the years.” he says “It’s not like a National Trust property where you have to be careful what you touch, we highlight it’s history but this place has to earn it’s keep and continue to be a huge part of the local community”. So what brings people to the theatre still in this age of domestic digital technology? “You can’t beat a live show” declares Chris as we look out over the auditorium. “Every performance is unique, it isn’t the same with television. You’ve got the wow factor with a place like this”.

The simple fact is that Southsea loves it’s theatre. As I step outside I’m reminded of something Chris tells me when I ask why he’s so dedicated. “This place is special, I love it to bits. I pat it every night before I head home”. Looking up at the grand entrance with a smile on my face, I do the same.

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles, History & Architecture, Local & Community

October 2017

Date: October 1st, 2017

I’m sure I’m not the only person who feels a bit blue at the end of summer; a time to return to normality, off with the T-shirt and shorts, and into something more formal. The children are back to school, the days are getting shorter and the boiler needs servicing.

I’m pleased to say this issue has lots of positive things to look forward to as we move into autumn. Tara Knight talks about why interesting, tasty food shouldn’t just be something reserved for eating out (p.36). In fact, we’ve got food well-covered in this issue and there’s chance to win top of the range cookware from Kitchenlab (p.44). Walter Dall’Omo has some top tips for autumnal gardening (p.52). John Worsey talks to a very happy and philosophical Portsmouth wrestler, Rishi Ghosh (p.72). And, if you were feeling sad about your children or grandchildren going back to school after the summer holidays, it will soon be time for half term and our Girl about Southsea is looking forward to a low cost, maximum fun, half term break (p.20).

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

4 study habits for the new academic year

Date: September 3rd, 2017

Written by Howard Jones, of Love to Learn

By early September it’s back to business after the freedom and fun of the summer holidays. Let’s hope our children will have the initial excitement and enthusiasm for a new year motivating them through the first half term. Forming a few good habits early can help them when facing new challenges later.

Effective study skills can often make good students into great students, and so here are 4 useful study habits to help your child get the most out of their learning this year.

1. Study Planner

Schools let children know the topics they will be studying nowadays. A long term plan of the year ahead helps to focus their learning and avoid last minute cramming before exams.

2. Study Schedule

Sticking to regular homework sessions on a timetable will make life easier, as it becomes part of the daily routine. A calendar and a weekly plan leading up to due dates will give everyone a clear view and help in allocating time to getting things done.

3. Study Time

Designate a ‘communication blackout hour’, or until homework is done; no phones, messages, gaming or TV.

4. Study Space

Create a study area away from above distraction. Ideally a quiet, well lit area, having materials and equipment to hand including spare reading glasses if needed.

We don’t think that parents should have to do all the work, so this kind of support for children is a good way to help them take responsibility. Generally the rule of thumb is, if you are working harder on their homework than they are, it is time to back off!

Posted in: Articles, Family

Pots and Planters

Date: September 3rd, 2017

Big, bold and beautiful. Modern garden designers tend to lean towards this vision when asked to use pots and planters to add architectural interest to clients’ gardens. Ornate traditional planters made in the beautiful materials of marble, cast iron and lead have long been used in gardens. In their heyday, they sat proudly and majestically on the gates of country houses, or adorned large sweeping terraces.


More often than not these planters remained empty, with their owners seemingly happy to allow the beauty of the material speak for itself. There is a lesson here somewhere. Much as pots and planters look great overflowing with the bright colours of summer flowers, or helping to show off a specimen shrub, the effect of a beautifully made pot even in a less expensive material such as clay, can often make a bigger impact.


The Egyptians were the first to make use of clay, producing the humble flowerpot to move their plants about. Of course, in more recent centuries, it is the Greeks who are more famous for their beautiful terracotta pots. Also, the Cretans have long used their local clay to make big pots to store grain, olives and olive oil.


Authentic Cretan pots are fired to 1150c, which means they can withstand the most brutal of our winter frosts. So in recent decades, these very same pots, in all shapes and sizes, have been finding their way to our shores. With their earthy tones of rust and tan, they have become increasingly popular as features in both the traditional and modern garden.


For the more adventurous, the huge range of frost resistant fibreglass pots is increasingly popular with people wanting something a little different. Not only can you have any shape or size to suit your garden, you can choose any colour under the rainbow, and they come in a variety of finishes. Fibreglass pots are strong, lightweight and durable, and when planted with a colourful display of plants, adds a touch of class to your contemporary or courtyard garden. Because they are so light, it makes it easy to move the planters so you can experiment with where to position them and finally, they are relatively inexpensive. These planters are particularly useful in the northern areas of the garden, where you can use them to help to brighten a dark or shady spot.


No matter what material or style suits your tastes and garden, pots and planters help to add the personal finishing touches to your outdoor space. Frame the borders of patios, terraces and balconies or use planted with small trees or specimen plants to add height to small courtyards or gardens. You can plant with evergreens, colourful seasonal plants, trees, and bulbs. The choice is yours.

Summer Loving

Written by Walter Dall’Omo

August sees us spending the most amount of time in our gardens. With the warmer weather and longer evenings, we love to immerse ourselves amongst our plants and flowers. Maintenance is usually minimal; reduced to dead heading, removing damaged leaves, perhaps painting features or boundaries, and watering.

Adding summer seasonal features or garden dressing, is becoming an increasingly popular trend. There is a huge array of reasonably priced lighting, bunting and quirky features on the market, so that it is easy to create a style that suits you. It is amazing how just a few detail pieces can lift the look of your outdoor space. Be as creative as you like, it’s all about having fun and experimenting.

Plants that are looking particularly good at the moment include Penstemon, with their abundance of heavy tubed flowers; Crocosmia, with their range of bright, hot colours; and the architectural foliage of Fatsia japonica is looking good too. For a showy climber, look towards Campsis radicans.

September brings increasingly chilly evenings. It is also a great time to start planting spring flowering bulbs and to begin to cut back herbaceous plants. It also sees autumn leaf colour beginning to develop, but more on autumn foliage next time.

Remember to prune lavenders before the flowers finish. Although this seems an odd thing to do, it does prevent them from splitting and breaking the main branches. It also gives them a compact shape for next year.

Enjoy your Summer whatever you happen to be doing in the garden!

Posted in: Articles, Home & Garden

Jack House Gallery

Date: September 3rd, 2017

Written by Kevin Dean

Just over two years ago Rebecca Crow opened The Jack House Gallery in Old Portsmouth. Kevin Dean of Southsea Lifestyle talked to Rebecca about how it all began, how artists and shows are selected and her plans for the future?

Stephen Morgan MP meets Rebecca Crow and Trixie the dog

Visiting your gallery is always such a pleasure, the quality of the space as much as the art itself is as good as anything you’d see in London. How did it all start and why did you choose to locate to Old Portsmouth?

My husband comes from hereabouts and started his working life in the dockyard. He refused to make our home in London and I need to be in a city. I knew Portsmouth because 30 years ago I did my Fine Art degree here and I liked it so we bought Jack House. The commercial property next door became available and everything fell into place to open a gallery by joining the two.

Have you always worked in galleries or with art in some context?

Yes. My first job was a backroom girl at the Fine Art Society in the archives and library. A series of lowly gallery assistant roles, interspersed with a spell in arts marketing and a really disastrous stab at art teaching in the Middle East.

Then back to gallery work, again in the Middle East. Have you found plenty of art buyers in Portsmouth, or do you have customers coming from further afield?

Sales have been increasingly elusive due to the economic downturn and the financial uncertainties people are facing. Art is a luxury and in harder times it’s shunted down the list of priorities. I never expected to rely solely on Portsmouth buyers and hoped that in time we would draw people from further afield than Portsmouth itself, including London, Chichester and Brighton etc. but it’s takes time to build recognition and reputation. I am now having to seriously consider alternative ways to make the space pay for itself and am looking into hiring it out for events, meetings, product launches and social activities. Maybe classes? It’s a lovely space and it would be nice to make it more useful whilst also enabling me to continue a strong exhibition program without compromise.

How do you select which artists to show?

It starts with a basic ‘like’ the work response’ and then onto whether or not they have a body of work, or sufficient evidence of commitment/ history to have a story to tell in the gallery. There is also ‘a like the person response’ by this time because I have to get on with the artist however talented or successful they are.

‘Theres no point in asking you’ll get no reply ‘100x100cm by Tim Fawcett, showing from 1st -30th September

Some of your shows have been quite edgy and have made demands of the viewer. As a gallery owner you need sales to survive, would be easier to sell work that is more accessible or decorative?

It’s a difficult balance to strike. I spent years selling stuff other people had curated, and which I very often didn’t rate. Having a genuine respect for the art is important to me. It probably would be easier to sell more decorative pictures but I wouldn’t enjoy it. At the moment it’s difficult to sell anything and the few times I’ve tried to second guess or compromise it hasn’t worked anyway, so I don’t bother now.

Would it be fair to say, that you prefer imagery that includes the human form, or reflects human existence in some way?

Yes. Totally. I show pictures I like to look at and I’ve always liked pictures that tell stories or suggest narratives, however ambiguously. I like pictures that are full of ideas and questions and that are beautifully made with complete integrity by the artist. Unfortunately it means abstract artists don’t get a look in.

Over the past two years are there any shows you are particularly proud of?

I was really proud of the first show we did because it felt brave. It’s was a bit contentious and very bold but I wanted to ‘arrive’ and Amartey Golding pulled it off. I love working with him and got a real kick taking his film to the London Art Fair. The really warm response for John Green’s first show was so gratifying because he is a genuinely talented very ‘real’ artist and the experience of meeting so many ex-dockies and their families that his show brought to the gallery was very moving in a way. It really touched people locally.

Your plans for the future?

I’ve been pleased with the support the local community has given the gallery and it was great to have a visit from Stephen Morgan MP recently. But I may have to reduce the number of shows, so that I can generate income from alternative sources, but quality will not be compromised. Next year I have lined up 3 veterans – Garrick Palmer whose wood engravings I love, John Green again – he has so much work that should be seen – and I’m very excited to say that Derek Boshier approached the gallery to do a show. Portsmouth born and bred, he has real pop art pedigree. People will know his designs for album covers for Bowie and the Clash but he’s still painting in Los Angeles where he now lives. I will host a group show of some kind and have been in discussions about another big print show.

Art, an investment or love at first sight?

For me love first sight always. But good art is never, ever a bad investment.

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles

The sun always shines on Southsea

Date: September 3rd, 2017

Written by Tara Knight

Southsea comes alive in the summer, and this year my son Alfie and I are embracing the sea, strolling down to the beach at low tide to swim in the water. I am finding myself nostalgic for my childhood where our summer routine involved trips to The Akram store to stock up on food for lunch; then a walk via the Rose Gardens to settle on the beach for the afternoon. Days filled with happy memories where the sun always seemed to shine.

Is it a sense of nostalgia which makes summer a happy time for so many of us, or is it the sunshine itself? Sun is essential for our vitamin D levels, as it is synthesized in response to UVB radiation. Often referred to as the sunshine vitamin, D is essential for building strong bones and teeth, helps facilitate normal immune system functions, and also offers improved resistance against certain diseases. Serotonin production, which is associated with mood, can be affected by exposure to daylight, and higher levels during the longer summer days may contribute to more positive moods and a calm yet focused mental outlook. Sound like a familiar summer feeling?

Although the sun has its benefits, we do need to take care. An adequate level of vitamin D can be produced by being in the sun for half an hour; wearing SPF is obvious advice but in addition to the skin risks, excessive sun exposure creates free radical damage which contributes towards ageing.

A balanced summer diet with colourful fruits and vegetables combined with outdoor living and adequate hydration can keep you healthy and help protect you from the inside out. Vitamin A is essential for healthy hair, skin, nails and eye health; whereas Vitamin E is an anti-inflammatory and antioxidant which helps protect against disease and promotes, natural, slow ageing. Vitamins A, D and E are all fat soluble so they rely on dietary fats (such as omega 3s) to be stored and utilized within the body. Good food sources include cold water fish such as salmon, walnuts, hemp seeds, flax seeds and leafy green vegetables.

Vitamin C is also a potent antioxidant and can be found in fresh fruits, especially citrus, strawberries and blackcurrants. Carrots, summer squash and tomatoes all contain carotenoids – a type of phytonutrient which gives vegetables their vibrant red, orange and yellow hues. Carotenoids are also the dominant pigment in autumn leaf colouration, but lets not look too far ahead, I’m just trying to make the most of everything the summer has to offer.

Posted in: Articles, Family, Local & Community

Write On: Angelo Tirotto’s Stories

Date: August 7th, 2017

Written by John Worsey

From one island to another, writer Angelo Tirotto’s journey from Guernsey to Portsmouth fulfilled an age-old narrative: he liked a girl who lived here. Born to parents of Italian and Spanish descent, Angelo never quite felt at home on Guernsey.

“You can cycle round it in an hour. Everyone knows everyone. I was always ‘Giovanni’s son’, never Angelo. I was trapped and felt I had to get out.”

As a child, his only means of escape were comic books. He devoured them. “Before I could read, I looked at the pictures and then later I would get into the stories. At school, I was one of those classic ‘clever but could try harder’ kids, because I spent all my time in lessons drawing comic characters. It was kind of my destiny to be involved in comics, which is why I opened a comic store in Portsmouth.”

Angelo’s first venture in his new home city fell victim to the 2008 financial crisis. But with a business partner, Angelo fought back with a new shop – Room 237, which can today be found on Albert Road. Around the time 237 opened, a new door swung open for the aspiring writer. It was one that he’d been dreaming of his whole life.

He and artist Richard Jordan submitted an outline for a new series to Image Comics in America, publishers of The Walking Dead. No Place Like Home was to be a bold modern take on The Wizard Of Oz. The publisher said yes.

Angelo recalls the thrill of walking into one of London’s biggest comic stores and seeing his book on the shelves next to Alan Moore’s Watchmen. “Alan Moore is my favourite comic book creator. The way he told the story of Watchmen was revolutionary.”

But the dream of having his own series soon led to sleep-deprived nights. Both he and Jordan had full time jobs, with Angelo corunning 237. They would wake at 7am, work on the book for a couple of hours, go to work, come home, work on the book til 4am, grab three hours sleep and then get up at 7 to do it all over again. “We did that for a year and we were just exhausted, constantly battling deadlines.”

So Angelo made a bold decision. One year into living his dream, he stopped the book. This led to death threats from ardent fans who wanted to know how it ended. But he had to find a healthy way to make his ambition sustainable.

He handed Room 237 over to his business partner and has spent the past four years working on a new vision: self-publishing. Rather than a monthly series, he’ll focus on producing two or three high quality, hardcover graphic novels every year. Each will tell a complete story.

“The first, Manwolfs, is about skateboarding. If it does well, I’ll produce my next volume, which is about witchcraft. It’s taken years to realise that I prefer to work on different, interesting stuff.”

Since childhood, Angelo has pursued one vision for his career. But along the way, he has adapted to overcome all kinds of unexpected challenges. He has learned a lesson fit for anyone with aspirations. “Never give up. You can be rejected 20 times, because it only needs to go right once.”

You can follow the next chapter of Angelo’s career at his website,

Posted in: Art & Culture, Articles

While You Were Sleeping…

Date: August 4th, 2017

Written by Neil Maxwell

One of the frustrations of being part of the Portsmouth RNLI Lifeboat crew is that not many people know where the Lifeboat station is and we’re often mistaken for the independent, part time, organisation based by the Pyramids. Added to which, as there are no houses in the immediate vicinity of the station, when we are called out in the middle of the night it often goes unnoticed, unless you follow us on Facebook or Twitter.

There is something quite surreal about being dragged out of your bed in the early hours of the morning, driving through the empty streets, pulling on a dry suit, and rapidly having to engage your brain into considering the many elements we have to contend with, from the weather, tide, crew mix – yet a few minutes before, you were sound asleep.

For those that regularly work night shifts, I’m sure that this is normal. However, for unpaid volunteers expected at work the next day, its no small sacrifice. I’ll give you a snap shot of a service earlier this year Friday, March 17th 02:34 am.

The sound of the pager shatters the night, and across the city the crew grab their clothes and assemble at the boathouse. The launch request on the pager stated both boats, which indicates it’s urgent. The Duty Helm/Coxswain calls the coastguard and is tasked to search the shoreline of west coast Hayling Island for a missing suicidal person. The Duty Helm selects crews for both boats, and come up with a search plan, and launch into the inky blackness.

Once at sea, the searchlights and the image intensifier are switched on, and both boats begin their search. The D Class ILB goes along the west coast, its shallower draft allowing it closer access to the shore, whilst the Atlantic proceeds out to the harbour and searches along Hayling seafront. The Coastguard have several shore units working with the police who request the Coastguard helicopter, who are soon overhead.

The D Class works its way along in extremely shallow water, the crew still using searchlights, whilst on the Atlantic, a stiff breeze has whipped up the seas and the crew are having to watch out for large waves on the beam as they work their way along the coast.

After an hour of searching, a radio message from the Coastguard confirms that the helicopter has directed the Police to the missing person who are now ensuring they get the help they need. Both boats return to the boat house at 03:50, the boats are refuelled and cleaned. At 04:30am the crew head home.

In my time with the crew we have dealt with everything: horses, dogs, heart attacks, strokes, head injuries, spinal injuries, sinking boats, boats on fire, scattered ashes for those who wish to be committed to the sea, and performed the sad task of body recovery. All this from a charity that receives zero government funding, crewed by volunteers at 238 lifeboat stations around the coast, 365 days a year.

The RNLI is an amazing charity crewed by ‘ordinary people doing extraordinary things’ but we couldn’t do it without your help and we would like to thank all of you that support us monthly and the donations you kindly put in our collecting buckets on the seafront and at Gunwharf’s recent hugely successful Seafood Festival.

Posted in: Articles, Local & Community

Southsea Vibes

Date: August 4th, 2017

Written by Girl About Southsea

There are many things I love about Southsea, including the variety of activities and things to do – for everyone to enjoy. But when it comes to the summer, the city has a whole new vibe, and I absolutely love it. It’s a completely different kind of buzz from the rest of the year, it’s great. There are more people out and about, enjoying the arts and culture, social scene and the Southsea lifestyle.

When I’m walking around my hometown, nothing makes me happier than seeing the hustle and bustle of people enjoying everything Southsea is about.

The Southsea summer calendar is full of more events than at any other time of year, and there is so much more to enjoy outside. The historic architecture, coastal landscape, horizon, and nature, all around looks better and has more to offer in the sunshine.

The lighter and longer nights means you can enjoy BBQs on the beach, and picnic dinners in the park; my kids love it. Throwing stones into the sea whilst having a burger on a school night is great fun.

Sunny days always call for ice cream, a trip to the beach or a stroll to the park, and in Southsea you can walk pretty much everywhere (or scoot for the smaller legs).

When it’s time for my husband and I to escape the children, we love to go out for dinner and/or drinks in the local independent restaurants and bars, al fresco – where we can this time of year, so we can and enjoy the views, scenes and the Southsea life that goes by.

We have had some pretty hot weather recently, and we still have lots more summer to go, so I am hopeful for some more glorious sunshine, so we can continue the Southsea summer vibes.

Posted in: Articles, Family, Local & Community

Victorious Festival 2017

Date: August 4th, 2017

As proud sponsors of Victorious Festival, Southsea Lifestyle looks forward to a great bank holiday weekend – 25, 26 & 27 August 2017

Big music festivals began in the 1960s. One of the most significant being a few miles away: the Isle of Wight Festival, its 1970 festival is still talked about today, as its line up included Jimi Hendrix, Bob Dylan, Miles Davis and Joni Mitchell. It came with its own problems though: the sound system wasn’t great and the 600,000 festival goers, on an island with a population of less than 100,000, caused huge logistical problems, leading to its demise – until being revived in 2002. Today, virtually every UK town or city holds a music festival of some sort, featuring everything from bluegrass to hip hop, rock and jazz, attracting audiences large and small, you may even have been to one or two this year already.

From modest beginnings, just 5 years ago, Victorious has become one of the south coast’s major festivals, with some 120,000 people attending last year. But as much as it has grown, there is still something very special about a music festival that so many of us can get to simply by walking to the common, or hopping on a bus or train.

So what can we expect from Victorious 2017?

As ever the line up contains a broad mix of artists and genres. Headliners include Stereophonics, (Sat.) Elbow and Olly Murs (Sun.), along with other quality bands, including Southampton’s best music export since Craig David – Band of Skulls. Or the tight sounds of the Glasgow five piece, Franz Ferdinand, with a new line up since the departure of founding member Nick McCarthy last year. Also look out for British Sea Power, who played Victorious in 2015.

Let’s not forget all our local talent Kassassin Street and Jerry Williams, Southsea Lifestyle favourites, are playing again this year, while Nick Courtney will be presenting some of Portsmouth’s finest on the Seaside Stage, with more artists to check out at the Strong Island and Acoustic Stages.

A few new additions to mention, this year the festival starts on the Friday at 4-11pm with an opening party and if you have friends or family who’d like to come, but you’d rather not have them stay with you, there’s offsite camping available at Farlington Fields. Plus there’s a coach service that’s picking up revellers across the UK, from Birmingham to Plymouth. Busterfest, a no alcohol/drugs festival near Petersfield has teamed up with Victorious to create a new stage, metal fans will want to see Sikth and Pulled Apart by Horses. Happy’s Circus is also new, with acrobats, sword acts and lots of magic, plus children can move onto the Kids Arena for a variety of acts and interactive entertainment.

With the Real Ale Village and Market Way for quirky market stalls and tasty food, it all promises to be a fascinating, fun weekend – who knows, maybe we will be talking about Victorious 2017 in the same breath as the 1970 Isle of Wight festival!

See our competition here for your chance to win a family ticket.


Look out for some Surface Tension from Aspex gallery in partnership with Strong Island, University of Portsmouth , (UoP) and Victorious. Three artists have been commissioned to produce new artworks, supported by creative industries from the UoP. Located at the festival, the artworks will form ‘creative surfaces’ from recycled materials. A trail map will direct visitors to each artwork, promoting interaction in various ways, from arts activities to uploading photos and comments on social media. In September, the work will be shown at Aspex gallery.

The commissioned artists are Paul Gonella and Tristan Savage (Strong Island), Rainatu Habib, (UoP), Illustration graduate, who will be Aspex’s artist-in-residence, throughout August and Megan Humphries (see p.51), who will create a community artwork and engage the public through participatory workshops, leading up to the festival. Look out for a screen printed poster to promote the Surface Tension project, by UoP illustration graduate, John Lihou. The project is supported by Gibson Whitter, Gunwharf Quays, and the Faculty of Creative & Cultural Industries at the University of Portsmouth.

#SurfaceTensionUK on social media to connect with the project.


If you see someone painting to the rhythm of the music it is probably the artist/designer Kevin Dean, who will be attempting to record as much of the festival as he can, from the construction of the site, to festival goers and the bands on stage. He will be joined by the artist/photographer Derek Rodgers – they aim for a joint show later in the year.


For a festive celebration of our city’s global community, head to the Victorious Fesival 2017’s World Music Village on Saturday 26th & Sunday 27th August, curated by the local charity, Arms Around the Child. The award winning Neneh Cherry returns to the festival on Saturday afternoon after her foot stomping set last year. For a Bhangra fuelled Saturday night, look out for Des-C, who follows the innovative folk rock band Sasha Ilyukevich and the Highly Skilled Migrants. If you enjoy the steel pan sound, then don’t miss the Pan Jazz International Ensemble, (Saturday afternoon). You can catch African beats with Fellowship of Groove, and reggae with Emiliyah and the MightyZ All Stars, (Sunday). For more great reggae, seek out legends Macka B, (pictured right) and Black Slate, each performing Sunday evening.

Elsewhere, the bill boasts Afrobeat and Urban Funk from Matuki, (Saturday evening), plus Latin dance vibes from Duke Rossa, (Sunday afternoon).

The World Music Village also hosts The People’s Lounge tent again this year, a cultural collective of artists, musicians, activists, poets and cooks. This alternative enclave will feature Portsmouth’s diverse creative talent, live music, spoken word poetry, visual art, Tai Chi and various workshops throughout the weekend, plus DJ sets and live music, including Shakara Soul, Nan Breddaz and the Southsea Groove Collective.

Posted in: Articles, Events

The New Wave

Date: August 3rd, 2017

Written by Chris Horton

Beer has of course suffered a long standing stereotype of being a ‘man’s drink’, though these days this representation is being challenged. A number of craft breweries are being headed by women – known in the trade as brewsters – and according to a recent CAMRA study, the number of women drinking ales has doubled over the last five years.

In Southsea, one of the original craft beer establishments in town, The Wave Maiden, is making its own headway on this issue. Headed by New York native turned Southsea resident Ali Lees and her husband Paul, they’ve been heading the craft beer movement in Southsea for the last 3 years. “I think people come in and are surprised that I’m a woman who knows a lot about beer” she says as we meet for a pint in the bar. “I think traditionally there weren’t many women drinking beer in pubs. It’s becoming more and more an acceptable thing. The craft beer scene has many progressive people in it – it’s not the old boys network anymore.” Ali’s enthusiasm and knowledge is clearly evident. “We have 100 beers available on the menu and I have made sure that I know about each and every one,” she states, “there’s so many levels of detail, from the graphic image to the story behind it to what goes in it. It’s all a labour of love.” This sense of pride and enthusiasm led Ali to create the Women in Beer night in May this year. “The night had a really comfortable, cool atmosphere. Everyone got involved, asking questions” describes Ali “I want to make beer accessible, many people come here and are not sure what to choose, or what they like, and I love going on that journey with them helping them find something they’ll fall in love with. My favourite customers are those who think they don’t like beer.”

The women-only night was marketed as being by women, for women with the aim of being a safe, inclusive environment, including an all female panel of industry insiders. Kelly Sidgwick from Bristol’s Good Chemistry, chats to me on the phone later that day. Kelly, who also went to the University of Portsmouth, highlights the reasons why the event was started “It’s very important for us to create events that empower women. In fact, they empower everyone as the whole idea is to present beer in a much more open manner.”

So, will there be similar events in the future? “Oh yes, definitely!” confirms Ali, “the job has only just started”.

Posted in: Articles, Food & Drink, Local & Community

Aug / Sept 2017

Date: August 2nd, 2017

At 12 years old, half way through my guitar solo – playing to a packed village hall in east Dorset, my mind went blank. I stood motionless, unsure what to do next, neither did the audience, until someone began clapping. Soon the entire crowd was applauding wildly.

It was a memorable experience, not just because I realised I wasn’t destined to become the next Jimmy Page, but because although I may not have realised it at the time, most people love to support each other, and that the shared experience of music helps us to be better people. Think of all the concerts to help combat homophobia and racism, to raise money for the victims of war and famine, or the recent bombings in Manchester. Whatever your thoughts about Victorious Festival, and whatever your preferred genre of music, there is something there for everyone, but most of all it’s an event for us to enjoy and share as a community. See our feature devoted to the festival (p.34).

You could argue Southsea is at its best in the summer, and we have several pages that also celebrate taking time out by the seaside (p.28) or choosing the best food to eat at this time of year (p.47). We are having some time off over August ourselves so there won’t be a September issue of Southsea Lifestyle, but we will be back in early October. Have a good one!

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

July 2017

Date: July 6th, 2017

If you are ever find life confusing and struggle to make decisions, then I have news for you. Making the perfect decision is a myth! Of course some choices are best based upon all the facts that are available to us, but, according to doctors, very often rather than pontificating for hours or days, it’s far better for our mental health to follow the advice of a popular sportswear company and ‘Just do it’.

This issue gives you even more choices or decisions to make. Just looking at the What’s On section: you will see numerous events that make the most of the summer, from champagne at Southsea Castle, to a wildlife watch on the beach (Cumberland Natural History Museum). And just to add to your confusion, we highlight many of the coffee shops on Southsea’s high streets ( p.14).

Whatever you decide to do, have a wonderful July.

Kevin John Dean

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June 2017

Date: June 3rd, 2017

Politics can be riveting, especially leading up to this month’s general election. In the space of a day or two, we can witness, solemnity, aspiration, climbdowns and farce. All came to an abrupt halt after the appalling terrorist attack in Manchester, watching the news became almost unbearable. A year ago, on 16th June another terrible act took place, the murder of Jo Cox – during a divisive EU referendum. In a celebration of Jo Cox’s life and in an effort to unite communities and move forward, The Jo Cox foundation is promoting ’The Great Get Together’ weekend. Read about Southsea’s very own Great Get Together on page (p. 24 – 25).

As we enter the festival season, we talk to KT Tunstall and Tom Walker about their music careers, festivals and Victorious (p.26 – 28). On the subject of festivals we are delighted to be part of The Portsmouth Seafood Festival at Gunwharf Quays on 24th & 25th June. A celebration of our city’s fishing heritage and sustainability, cooking demonstrations and of course a chance to sample some amazing seafood. And we mustn’t forget the 2017 Portsmouth Festivities 16th – 25th June.

This month gives us all an opportunity to join a community event, or activity – whatever your interests, politics and beliefs. In the words of Jo Cox, “We have far more in common than that which us divides us”, let’s make June the month we all accept our differences and move forward.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

May 2017

Date: May 5th, 2017

Amongst my regular emails, some welcome, some not so welcome, I like to read a couple of digital ‘life enhancing’ newsletters*. Recent topics include: ‘How to feel rich without money’, ‘20 ways to spring clean your life’ and ‘High fibre foods for a super charged digestive tract’. One of my favourite posts explained why time seems to speed up as we get older.

Apparently, once we reach our mid-twenties we encounter less new experiences; we’ve kinda done it all before. With less new information to process, we pay less attention to what’s happening around us, so that months and years seem shorter.

One new experience that I readily recall from my childhood is walking on a pier. It may not have been South Parade Pier, but stepping onto the historic structure a few days ago, after some four years of closure, felt like a very new experience to me. John Worsey has also taken a promenade along the pier, and reflects upon its possible future, (p.11-13). In the near future we can look forward to the annual Portsmouth Festivities in June, see the programme of events, (p.30 & 31), while Andy Johnson considers the future of the fishing industry, (p.8 & 9).

Incidentally, there is, it seems, a way to stop time from flying by as we age: by giving every moment, no matter how ordinary, extra attention and making time last longer. So if you see a middle aged man, staring intently at the world around him, don’t be concerned, I’m just trying to enjoy every single moment.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

April 2017

Date: March 30th, 2017

Humans are like cats, we sit, often in awkward positions on park benches, or lying on a patch of grass, trying to get maximum exposure to the increasingly warm sun.

It must be one of the first signs of an urban spring, along with people washing their cars or squeezing into last year’s favourite pair of shorts.

Whatever you do to welcome the change of season, music always adds to the occasion – Portsmouth singersongwriter Jerry Williams has been charming audiences since her first performances as a teenager at The Cellars, Eastney. William Sutton talks to Jerry about her growing fame, ambitions and dreams, (p.6 & 7).

Meanwhile another musician, Shakin’ Stevens, who is best known as a platinum-selling rock and roll singer, is coming to Portsmouth Guildhall in May with a more contemplative, blues, roots and classic rock set, and we’ve got five pairs of tickets to giveaway, (p.46).

Enjoy the sunshine and have a happy Easter.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

March 2017

Date: March 3rd, 2017

As someone who gets seasick from sitting on a lilo I’m not sure I could live on a boat.

Neil Williams had no such concerns when he set about renovating a dilapidated French fishing boat – which he now enjoys living upon, see our cover story on p6.

Staying with the sea, David Jones of Triton Scuba in Highland Road, has built an impressive reputation as an underwater photographer and film maker and has worked on numerous TV programmes and publications. He has also filmed much of the footage of a new adventure style documentary, which charts the alarming amount of plastic that is present in the world’s oceans, something that is fairly evident just from walking along our local beaches. Tipped to be the next Inconvenient Truth, A Plastic Ocean is due to be released later this year, see p.44.

Back on terra firma, we have a touching story about a war veteran p.10 and the career of a local boxing champion, Joel Macintrye on p.48. So, gloves off, get to your favourite corner and enjoy reading everything that’s great about our city!

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

February 2017

Date: February 2nd, 2017

Welcome to our first magazine of 2017. I hope it’s not too late to wish you a Happy New Year.

This month, rather like a passionate love affair, we have gone a little crazy, and published 6 pages of Valentine’s gifts. Apologies if Valentine’s day is not for you, but at least we can be reminded of all our wonderful local retailers, and the range of products they sell throughout the year. Who knows what 2017 will bring at home or abroad, but whatever happens, please continue to think local before you buy any goods or services.

One subject that causes constant discussion, even controversy, is the country’s housing stock and on p.16, John Worsey talks about the future of the rental sector in Portsmouth, while Neil Maxwell keeps us updated on property sales, p.12. Meanwhile, February may be the shortest and one of the coldest month’s of the year but we have found more events than ever to tempt you outside – see our What’s On listings from p.42 to p52.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

December 2016

Date: December 5th, 2016

Have you noticed that there are two camps of people at this time of year? There’s those who absolutely love Christmas and others that are… indifferent to the occasion. It’s often an opening line at parties, “Are you a fan of Christmas?” For those of you that are not sure how to answer that question, here’s a mini test to help you decide:

A You like to buy most of your Christmas gifts by the end of November?

B You add up the cost of sending all your family and friends Christmas cards by post and decide to send email greetings instead?

A You have a festive wardrobe, consisting of something sparkly, or a wooly jumper covered in reindeer motifs?

B You have an unwanted present at the back of your wardrobe which you plan to give to someone else for Christmas this year?

If your answers were all A, then well done, you are a lover of Christmas! If you answered mainly B, you are ‘indifferent’. Or perhaps, like me, you are a little bit of both? Whatever your opinion of Christmas, we hope you enjoy reading this, our rather seasonal issue. We won’t be publishing a January edition but will be back in February. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to all.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

November 2016

Date: November 3rd, 2016

One of the pleasures of publishing Southsea Lifestyle, is that I get a sneak preview of all the forthcoming events. One fascinating trend over the years has been the growth of community markets.

For example I can see that on one day (Saturday 3rd December), it will be possible to visit three quality markets, starting with the popular and vibrant Love Southsea Market in Palmerston Road. Then head to the Castle Road Christmas Festival Market, featuring vintage clothes, records and live music, followed by a stroll along the Common to the new Hotwalls Studios Festive Creative Market – a carefully curated show of the city’s artists and makers.

If you’d like to extend your creative experience further, pop along to the biennial Craft Emergency exhibition at Aspex (page 45), to view the work of the eleven selected artist/makers.

According to the Crafts Council, ‘the overall value of craft skills to the British economy is £3.4bn’ – creativity and markets, it looks like a trend that’s on the up.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

October 2016

Date: October 7th, 2016

After a glorious summer that seemed to continue well into September, I’m trying hard to be upbeat about the autumn. This isn’t a season I look forward to, perhaps as it’s a time I associate with returning to school after the long summer holidays, or with the colder, darker evenings to come. It feels like a time for knuckling down to old routines and sewing buttons on to winter coats.

But this is no place for me to discuss my inner psyche, besides, Tara Knight enjoys this time of year and reminds us it’s a time to prepare for feasting and for all off the lovely comforting soups, stews and mulled cider we can enjoy in the coming weeks and months (p.20).

As for schooldays, Lynn Nicholls talks about some of the inspirational people who may have set off on a particular career path, only to discover that what they would really like to do is to train as a teacher (p.26).

If you are thinking of staying in and hibernating, Emma Beatty encourages us to get out there and enjoy all of the cultural entertainment that our city has to offer (p.40), and if you like walking and looking at art, join the Portsmouth Art Trail on 14th October. There’s even your very own trail guide in this month’s centre pages.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

September 2016

Date: September 5th, 2016

We regret to announce The Camber Seafood Festival has been cancelled. Despite enormous support from the fishing community, businesses and residents, our plans were sunk without trace by unforeseen circumstances. However, I’m pleased to report the plans for the Seafood Festival 2017 are already underway.

On a brighter note, we’ve just hosted a ‘pop up’ radio station, involving people from across the city of all ages, playing their music, talking about their lives, the arts, culture and the challenges we face in our community. As with the magazine, everything we have tried to do, (including the seafood festival) has been done from our own resources, with no external funding, simply because we believe in creating a better, more cohesive society.

Sorry if this sounds a bit grandiose, but the sentiments are sincere, and if they chime with you, get in touch and lets talk about how we might work together. This issue carries several inspiring stories of community action: Our cover story – an update on the work by Canoe Lake Leisure to make tennis accessible for all, (see p.6-7), Martyn Knight’s interview with the Portsmouth charity, Don’t Hate, Donate, (p.10) and a thought provoking article by seventeen year old Beatrix Bee about remaining European despite Brexit (p.24).

Finally, our city is propelled by its entrepreneurs, so do read John Worsey’s article about loving your own business (p.16) If your business needs some loving promotion, again, get in touch. Together, we can achieve great things.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

August 2016

Date: August 7th, 2016

It’s difficult to please the British when it comes to the weather. We fret when it’s cold and wet, but as soon as the temperature is over 20°C we complain it’s too hot and the weather forecaster warns of uncomfortable humid nights, making sleep difficult. But just to confuse matters we wake, presumably delirious from lack of sleep, and happily spend the cost of a secondhand car on a week abroad, in temperatures exceeding 30°C.

Meanwhile, things are hotting up at Southsea Lifestyle, we are launching our very own popup radio station on 11th August from 6pm, see page 21. Listen to a broad range of local, quirky music and chat, all broadcast from around town, places you love, people you might know.

You can listen online at or via the TuneIn Radio app which you can download free on Apple or android. The programme schedule will also appear on the website. If you have anything you would like to contribute to Southsea Lifestyle Radio, we’d be delighted to hear from you.

Working with Portsmouth Fish Market and our other partners, we are also busy preparing for Portsmouth’s first Seafood Festival at The Camber Dock on 3rd & 4th September. Again you can see more details overleaf and look out for news throughout this month.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

July 2016

Date: July 5th, 2016

The city looks forward to Victorious Festival in August but there are other festivals on the horizon. Boathouse 4, a relatively new attraction in the Dockyard has a festival from 5th – 7th August. Meanwhile, we are delighted to announce Portsmouth’s first seafood festival, at The Camber Dock in Old Portsmouth on 3rd & 4th of September, brought to you by Portsmouth Fish Market, Southsea Lifestyle and our partners, a great opportunity to celebrate our city’s fishing community and its seafaring past.

To mark the occasion of the festival, we are launching a pop-up radio station, presenting local people, features and music, which we will be taking on tour around the city. There will be more information in our August issue and on both our own and Strong Island’s social media, but if you, your business/organisation would like to get involved, in either the radio, the seafood festival, or both, do get in touch via: we’d love to hear from you.

Finally, we hope you like this month’s cover, featuring one of our city’s great landmarks, HMS Warrior 1860. The ship is badly in need of some serious restoration, (see p.47) We hope you will show the old lady how much you care by sending HMS Warrior your coloured-in artwork. Have some fun in process and perhaps win a prize – further details on the inside back cover.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

June 2016

Date: June 5th, 2016

You might be pleased to know Southsea lifestyle is an EU Referendum free zone. It was tempting to join in the debate, but as we have always tried to steer clear of politics, we decided to keep it that way. Even without the referendum, things could start to heat up by early June, with predications of the hottest summer on record – if the meteorologists have got it right.

There are some great events to look forward to this summer and starting proceedings we have the Portsmouth Festivities, now in it’s 17th year, which coincidently kicks off on 17th June, the theme is ‘Electric’, and the first weekend will see a series of stunning open-air light displays around the city by Luxmuralis, for more information see,

We hope you will vote with conviction on 23rd June and that our community is content with the result, whatever the outcome. And if you are looking for some light relief after the referendum draws to a close, don’t forget it’s the final of the South Coast Comedian of the year at the Wedgewood Rooms.

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

May 2016

Date: May 12th, 2016

If you have lived in Southsea for more than a few years you’ll probably have noticed it’s growing popularity. More shops, restaurants, festivals and attractions – there’s an air of confidence and sophistication about the place.

You may even have heard of comparisons to Brighton and of creatives in London drawn to our seaside and comparatively affordable house prices. Whether this is an exciting vision or one that fills you with horror, do read John Worsey’s article discussing the ‘Southsea brand’ (p.35) Talking of brands, Southsea Lifestyle is delighted to announce that we have joined forces with the Strong Island Co. brand, the much respected media hub who have made a major contribution to our community and the many improvements the city has seen. You can read more on p.4.

Graffiti art can also add to a city’s culture and colour and Fark-FK has done an enormous amount to support this sometimes underrated and misunderstood art form. You can also win Fark-FK’s artwork, painted specially for our front cover, (see pp27-29).

Kevin John Dean

Posted in: Back Issues

April 2016

Date: April 1st, 2016

We are, once more, supporting and promoting the local fishing industry along with just a few of Portsmouth and Southsea’s restaurants serving seafood, from sushi to sea bass. It’s a fascinating and highly visual topic that is integral to life in our city and something we look forward to developing over the coming months.

Spring may be the time for fresh green leaves and frolicking lambs, but for some parents and their children it’s also time to consider the next academic year – a new school perhaps, or to learn about the changes to the school curriculum. All of which is covered in our Focus on Education, see pages 18 – 24. Our very own Culture Vulture, Emma Beatty, has been busy collecting gallery news and we have some inspiring images and words if you are keen to give your home or garden a spring make over.

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March 2016

Date: March 9th, 2016

We were delighted to have had so many positive remarks about our new Southsea Lifestyle title. Our last cover highlighted the breadth of our delivery area – from Gunwharf to Old Portsmouth, Southsea and Eastney. We have since added another community to our distribution route, opening our pages to the many residents and businesses of Port Solent – welcome!

Inside our March issue you will find our focus upon the local fishing community, healthy eating, beauty and wellbeing. Also, with further coverage on the transformation of Southsea’s grass tennis courts at Canoe Lake and the exciting plans that are now very much underway. We are also very pleased to be joined by one of our city’s most distinguished estate agents who will be offering his insight into the local property market. Not forgetting reviews and our comprehensive What’s On guide for March.

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