Skills school

Round & About


Following in the footsteps of Thierry Henry, the next generation of football superstars enjoy summer fun with Arsenal FC

Young football fans, aged seven to 12, attended a free summer Skills School at the Burlington Danes Academy in West London, during the summer holidays, under the official club coaches of Arsenal Football Club, with support from The Little Foxes FC.

The kids were put through their paces on a programme specially designed by the Arsenal coaches to develop their agility, control, speed and precision.

The Arsenal coaches heading up the Skills School were Tom Hartley, Jason Mason and Luke Addy.  Simon McManus, Head Coach, Arsenal Soccer Schools, said: “The Skills School programme provides young footballers with a great opportunity to train the Arsenal way in a safe, fun and friendly environment.”

At the end of the Skills School each child received a medal plus a goodie bag including: exclusive Skills School jersey, drawstring bag and water bottle.

This event was organised by Cover-More, the official travel insurance partners of Arsenal FC. If you are interested in receiving details for future Skills Schools, please register here:

Young minds

Liz Nicholls


Kevin Leivers of The Naked Pharmacy explains how parents can help boost children’s mental health

September summons our youngsters back to school, college and university. This may mean the start of somewhere new which is stressful for both students and parents alike.

Increased screen time, pressure to succeed and the inability to switch off can tip the nervous system into permanent “sympathetic nervous system” mode. This is the “fight or flight” mode the body originally evolved as a mechanism to protect us from imminent danger. The anxiety response in the brain causes a cascade of hormones with wide-ranging effects such as shortness of breath, a racing heart, paling or flushing of the face, sweaty hands… The list goes on and, if left unchecked, may lead to more regular and extreme symptoms.

Youngsters who suffer from anxiety may feel abnormal and isolated. Depression is a deeply personal issue and masks itself in many varied symptoms. Research by the World Health Organisation (WHO) has shown that perhaps the most effective treatment is personal empowerment of the sufferer’s own treatment. This means that they can learn to recognise and manage their symptoms, assisted by their parents.

Finding the tools that work for the individual is key to success. A regular exercise routine is both physically and mentally beneficial for health, especially within a group or team which will help reduce isolation. Regular sleep and a bedtime routine is very important, so turn off all blue light-emitting devices, avoid late food or drink (give at least two hours to digest) and avoid caffeine and sugary drinks after 1pm. Encourage children to express themselves by drawing or writing; it’s such a beautiful tool as an outlet to release thoughts.

Correct breathing is also vital – learn how to retrain the breath. The hormonal cascade during an anxiety response causes us to shallow breathe and suck in more air than we breath out, making the panic worse. A great technique is “The Big Breath”. Tony Ulatowski has used this with more than 400 students in west London, from pre-schoolers to secondary students, for the last year and has received overwhelmingly positive feedback from parents, teachers and pupils. Tony says: “One of the preschool teachers shared her story of a four-year-old girl with anger issues who has now learnt to take herself away, regulate her emotions, and just two or three of the big breaths help her feel better about taking control of her emotions.”

A healthy balanced diet including “live” foods, vegetables and fruits can be hugely helpful. Amazingly 90% of serotonin is produced in the gut. A study from Victoria, New Zealand in 2017 found patients with moderate to severe depression had a statistically significant improvement in symptoms on a modified Mediterranean diet. Dr Chatterjee, star of the BBC’s Doctor in the House, shows diet can make a difference. However, when was the last time your doctor asked you about food when you were worried about feeling depressed?

There are also some natural supplements which are safe, effective, non-addictive and adaptogenic, and that provide an evidence-based approach for mood imbalance and anxiety in children and teenagers. One of the most widely tested is the ancient spice saffron. Saffron targets the gut as well as the brain.

Dr Paul Clayton, Fellow at The Institute of Food, Brain and Behaviour, believes saffron should be considered in place of current therapies, which he believes are outdated and on off-target. He says: “By targeting core aspects of mood and anxiety, saffron works far more rapidly than the pharmaceuticals, which are shooting at the wrong target. In short, saffron restores normal nerve function in key areas of the brain. If you have chronic inflammation, the “brakes” are put on a few key processes. Saffron takes the brakes off. Moreover, it acts very fast (hours, not weeks or months), has no withdrawal symptoms, no side effects, and is safe to use with children.”

Visit or email or call 01483 685630.

Did you know?

1 In the UK 16 million people experience mental illness.
2 Three out of four mental illnesses start before the age of 18.
3 10% of school children have a diagnosable mental illness.
4 Three out of four young people with mental illness are not receiving treatment.
5 The average wait for effective treatment is 10 years.
6 Suicide is still the biggest killer of young people in the UK.
7 People with severe mental illness die 10-20 years earlier than the general population.

London calling

Liz Nicholls


We asked Merlin Labron Johnson, star chef at London’s Portland and The Conduit, his kitchen titbits ahead of his appearance, with many more talents, at The Big Feastival

Q: What is your favourite kitchen gadget – one that you couldn’t live without?
“My microplane – because I love covering dishes with a fine grating of something!”

Q. What’s your favourite summer/al fresco dish?
“Tomatoes, raspberries, basil and good olive oil.”

Q. Do you have a favourite pub/restaurant for a summer visit and why?
“My favourite place to eat is 40 Maltby St in Bermondsey, London. I love their wine list and deceptively simple dishes, all executed to absolute perfection on mismatched crockery.”

Q. Do you have a favourite supplier/producer/farm shop and why?
“I’m a big fan of OrganicLea, a workers’ co-operative growing food on London’s edge in the Lea Valley. Their produce is incredible and their vision is noble – working to create just production and trading systems that provide fair incomes to food producers and guarantee the rights of communities to access healthy and nutritious food produced using ecologically sound and sustainable methods.”

Q. What’s your favourite British summer fruit/veg? And drink? “Strawberries and the green asparagus from OrganicLea farm was incredible this year. Elderflower soda is definitely my favourite summer drink.”

Out of the blue

Liz Nicholls


Interiors fans can look forward to their next dose of luxe inspo thanks to Decorex International 2018, 16th to 19th September

Pops of peacock, azure, indigo and sapphire are sure to dazzle over the next seasons in the world of interiors if Decorex is anything to go by…

And it most certainly is: for more than four decades, Decorex International has been the show of choice for the luxury interior design market, and the go-to destination for new styles and trends. This year, the event returns to Syon Park from Sunday, 16th to Wednesday, 19th September, and will see rugs designed from across the world bringing an international flavour.

Decorex is firmly recognised among the international design community as the trusted resource for high-end interior designers, architects, speciers, retailers and property developers. Boasting more than 400 exhibitors from leading names to emerging talents, this annual four-day show attracts nearly 14,000 visitors from across the globe. This year Blank Canvas is the show theme with lots to delight!

Much celebrated contemporary craft furniture, lighting and home accessories retailer Another Country will be present for the first time. Other SW London stars exhibiting this year include Pooky whose gorgeous marble-effect lampshades are making us swoon; Charlotte Jade with luxe-patterned wallpaper, textiles and ceramic tiles and bespoke patterns and the superb Christopher Jenner who has a studio based in Chiswick Drummonds. Also look out for Blackbird London and Bert Frank. If the interiors inspo has you in the mood for some shopping, also check out the stunning lighting and mirrors, sofas and seating from Isleworth-based Sweetpea & Willow.

Visit to find out about tickets and updates.

On the urban rhino trail

Round & About


The Tusk Rhino Trail is a London-wide art installation, created to raise awareness of the endangered African rhino. Land Rover talk about its sculpture, put up this Monday in Trafalgar Square.

A unique 1.2m-long rhino sculpture was towed into Trafalgar Square on Monday, in support of the Tusk Rhino Trail, to aid conservation projects for this precious, endangered, African, species. The initiative involves 21 sculptures donated and decorated by leading figures from the worlds of art and design installed at prominent locations across the capital.

Towing the sculpture into this particular location was a Land Rover Discovery SUV, as this motor manufacturer has been collaborating with Tusk, The Duke of Edinburgh’s charity, for more than 15 years to preserve the habitat of the rhinoceros, in remote African places.

This particular art installation uses specialist paint techniques from Land Rover’s state-of-the-art manufacturing process to achieve a highly durable liquid metal finish.

Gerry McGovern, Chief Design Officer, Land Rover, said: “I wanted to celebrate the magnificence of this unique creature, so my rhino is covered in a chrome finish. The idea being that because of the highly reflective nature of chrome it would be seen from a long distance, consequently creating awareness of the plight of this animal in Africa. The red painted horn signifies the absurdity of this beautiful animal being hunted for such a small part of its overall being.”

Traditionally chrome has been used on vehicles to communicate prestige. Land Rover has developed an innovative and sustainable process to create a modern interpretation of chrome using a paint coating called spray chrome.

Inspired by the dye treatments conservationists use to protect rhinos from ivory traders, the horn of the Land Rover sculpture has been painted red, highlighting the plight of this endangered creature. White ivory has huge value to poachers and one solution is to inject rhino horns with a dye, making them less appealing to hunters.

To raise awareness of the plight of the rhino, you will find 21 installations popping up all over London. culminating in the celebration of World Rhino Day on Saturday, 22nd September. Each of the 21 rhinos will then be sold to raise funds for Tusk projects across Africa at an event hosted by leading auction house Christie’s on Tuesday, 9th October.

To discover all 21 rhinos, visit Tusk Rhino Trail 2018  #TuskRhinoTrail

Chock-a-block with LEGO

Round & About


Take your children along to a enjoy a free “edutaining” workshop, between 3rd and 5th August, thanks to LEGO at the Natural History Museum

Children aged six years and up are welcome to join the sustainable superhero Plantus Maximus at the Kensington museum and learn more about the natural world through fun and interactive LEGO® brick-building experiences.

To celebrate the arrival of the first LEGO bricks made from plants, children are challenged to combine LEGO plant elements and bricks to build their own sustainable superhero and create a natural habitat fit for Plantus Maximus and his friends.

You can embark on a special adventure with Plantus Maximus around the museum to learn more about the environment, natural world and how to help protect our planet. Kids and families are also invited to join in a variety of free activities and events over the same period.

The Natural History Museum exists to inspire a love of the natural world and unlock answers to the big issues facing humanity and the planet. It is a world-leading science research centre, and through its unique collection and unrivalled expertise it is tackling issues such as food security, eradicating diseases and managing resource scarcity.

It is the most visited natural history museum in Europe and the top science attraction in the UK, attracting more than 4.5 million visitors each year.

Online booking is essential for the LEGO® Build sessions; visit

Summer favourites from Paul Clerehugh

Round & About


We chat to Paul Clerehugh, the star chef of The Crooked Billet and London Street Brasserie…

Q. What’s your favourite kitchen gadget?
“ My Vogue Speed Peeler, for planing Reggiano curls from a parmesan wedge. It produces perfect courgette, daikon and carrot ribbons and peels a waxy charlotte in seconds… I could even shave my legs with it.”

Q. What are your favourite al fresco summer dishes?
“Shaved courgette and parmesan dressed with thick green olive oil. Or else rotisserie spitroast chicken, loads of herbs, garlic and lemon. I’m also partial to a Mr Whippy with local raspberries and monkey blood.”

Q. Which are your favourite local suppliers, producers or farm shop?
“Blue Tin Farm Shop at Keepers Cottage in Ipsden. Great produce, a great smoke house, great providence and I fancy the farmer’s wife…”

Q. What’s your favourite summer veg, fruit and drink?
“Runner beans, tomatoes and Barbara Laithwaites’ Stoke Row English sparkling wine. I also love an ice-cold Dandelion & Burdock.”

Visit  or London Street Brasserie

Three best brunch spots

Round & About


Serial brunch addict Jessica Elphinstone shares her insider knowledge on London’s hidden gems when it comes to foraging for more than just cereal


Rude Health Cafe
Coffee at Rude Health Cafe

Rude Health Cafe – 212 New King’s Road, SW6 4NZ
Founded and run by husband wife Nick and Camilla Barnard, Rude Health is all about natural food packed with goodness and amazing taste. Their café is a mecca to all things wholesome – spelt pancakes with berries and pistachios, wild salmon tartare and all manner of jazzed up porridge. It’s one of my favourite spots for a nourishing weekend brunch. A deli stocks freshly, baked goods and juices, as well as a great selection of Rude Health-branded products, and keep an eye out for their eccentric events, which range from wild swimming to life drawing.

Wright Bros – 26 Circus West Village, Battersea, SW8 4NN

Wright Bros Brunch
Wright Bros Brunch

Seafood lovers unite for this seriously unique brunch offering at the newest Wright Bros opening in the shiny new Battersea Power Station. Overlooking the river, one sunny Sunday, we ponder over kedgeree, a crab omelette and a heavenly lobster croque madame, washed down with freshly squeezed juices. Non-fishy options are available too, as well as a feisty cocktail menu featuring clamato juice bloody Marys and breakfast Martinis. In keeping with the nautical theme, the Thames Clipper can drop you off literally metres from the front door.

Love Walk Cafe Brunch

Love Walk Café – 12 Jerdan Place, Fulham, SW6 1BH
This unpretentious café in the heart of Fulham Broadway welcomes residents and tourists alike with an easy charm and generous portions. No-nonsense full English breakfasts are highly reasonable and well executed (surprisingly hard to come by in the capital!), while excellent coffee and fresh juices are served with a smile, and more experimental vegan and Mexican themed breakfasts are also well worth a try.

Fulham Market Hall marvel

Round & About


Jessica Elphinstone heads down to Fulham Market Hall to check out what everyone’s talking about…

A disused Edwardian ticket hall jazzily revamped as Fulham Market Hall brings serious sparkle to Fulham Broadway, offering a much-appreciated hub for some of West London’s best food and drinks. With ten different counters serving up everything from Hawaiian poké to fried chicken sandwiches,

Claudes Deli at Fulham Market Hall
Claudes Deli at Fulham Market Hall

Begin with a Fulham Spritz or two, served from the original London Underground ticket office booths. The sparkling elderflower cocktail is a real winner for balmy August evenings.

An array of homemade bread and pastries, cheese boards, charcuterie and colourful salads are prepared to order at Claude’s Deli.

Following the huge success of Thai street food restaurant Farang, chef Sebby Holmes serves fiery South East Asian dishes at Thima. Whole crispy sea bass with fresh Asian herbs and a lime dressing is a particular favourite.

Butchies at Fulham Market Hall
Butchies at Fulham Market Hall

We love the free-range, fried buttermilk chicken sandwiches from Butchies, served with OG sauce and plentiful pickles.

Finish it all off with a weird and wacky ice cream sundae from Asian-inspired dessert bar Soft Serve Society. Topped with everything from candyfloss to bubble waffles to charcoal coconut, they’re certainly a novelty.

Find the Market Halls adjacent to Fulham Broadway Underground Station, SW6 1BW. Visit

Hot stuff this summer!

Round & About


Hot in the city! But with so many top tipples to choose from and foodie favourites, here are our top picks to refresh and treat yourself here in south-west London….

Here, at Round & About Magazine, we are passionate supporters of local pubs, restaurants and producers. After all, anyone working in the food and drinks industry will know it takes a lot of hard graft to create the perfect recipe for punters to relax.

Lavinia Davolio in her Parsons Green Lavolio Boutique Confectionery shop
Lavinia Davolio in her Parsons Green Lavolio Boutique Confectionery shop

One fellow foodie who followed her hunger ( and her heart) is British-Italian entrepreneur Lavinia Davolio. Her sophisticated handmade confectionery, made with fruit, nuts and more goodies wrapped in chocolate and spices and a delicate sugar-spun shell are decadently delicious (not to mention pretty in their William Morris gift tins). Parsons Green-based Lavinia left a high-flying career in investment banking to pursue her dream and has lots of events planned for August and September –visit

Best for drinks

Gin has seen a surge in popularity and there are some interesting local distilleries and bars worth checking out. Did you know gin started out as a medicine (it was thought to cure gout and indigestion)? In the 18th century, alcohol was safer to drink than water and gin was cheaper than beer (it was untaxed until the government cottoned on, sparking hooch production). Much of the gin was drunk by women (with historians saying it resulted in child neglect and wet nurses giving gin to babies to quieten them), landing many in debtors’ prisons or the gallows, or driving them to madness, suicide and death (hence the term Mother’s Ruin). However, these days it’s a more joyful summer spirit, and best enjoyed in the sunshine. The Star & Garter, overlooking Putney Bridge, has 140 years of history and is home to Putney Gin Club (as well as serving good food, including charcuterie boards and cheese);

The Sipsmith Distillery in Chiswick is the first of its kind to open in London since 1820, and offers weeknight tours, a “sipper club” and delicious tipples; visit

We’ve also enjoyed a visit to the fun Mr Fogg’s gin parlour, tavern and house of botanicals in Mayfair and Covent Garden – visit

A refreshing choice for those who love the botanical flavours and want a delicious summer drink without alcohol, Seedlip’s non-alcoholic spirits are served in some of the world’s best cocktail bars, Michelin-starred restaurants and luxury hotels; have a look at and enjoy!

Pilango Cider drink
Pilango Cider drink

We have so many great brewers and booze-makers here in this corner of south-west London. Parsons Green-based Pilango Cider offers exceptional cider with a global twist. The team’s offering is inspired by their travels across the world and their house ciders, Liberated and Hopped, are 100% juice ciders made from community-sourced apples.

Also great for hoppy bunnies, check out tours and tipples by Chiswick’s Fullers, Sambrooks Brewery,, Fordham Brewery in Kensington
and Kew Brewery Also check out

Best for food.

We have too many to mention that are especially beautiful in summer. For starters, our top picks include Claude’s Kitchen in Parsons Green, SW6 4JA, – our resident food fanatic Jessica Elphinstone is a big fan, especially of the tiramisu; call 020 7371 8517 or visit She’s also a fan of vegan haven Picky Wops in Fulham’s North End Road (especially the pizza);

So, we’d like to know what’s your favourite pub or restaurant and why? Join in the conversation and comment below.