Raring2go! Bedford,Sandy & Biggleswade

BEDFORD, SANDY & BIGGLESWADE THINGS TO DO P6 & 10 COMPETITIONS P26 WHAT’S ON? P18, 23 & 29 MAGAZINE & WEBSITE THE GO-TO GUIDE FOR YOU AND YOUR CHILD raring2go.co.uk WINTER 2023 1 raring2go.co.uk Family Book Club: Start a family book club where you pick a book to read together and then have regular discussions about it. Choose a diverse range of genres and themes to cater to different interests within the family.You can even create a mini-library at home to keep all your family book club selections. Language Learning Night: Dedicate one evening a week to learning a new language as a family.You can use language-learning apps, online resources or enrol in a course together. This not only enhances communication skills but also opens doors to exploring different cultures and travel opportunities in the future. Remember that the key to introducing something new for the family is to ensure that it's engaging, inclusive, and adaptable to everyone's interests and abilities. These activities can help strengthen family bonds and create lasting memories.

Christ Church Halls, 140 Dudley Street Bedford MK40 Join us for 60 minutes of pure panto joy! Refreshments served afterwards Book your place via Eventbrite (Tickets are £5 per family and can be paid for on the door, cash or card) Don't miss this! It's a Boy! (A LOLBear Production) An Interactive, hilarious comedy musical for children and families! The Show of the Year! Thursday 21st December show starting at 4pm, doors open from 3:45pm

raring2go.co.uk 3 Raring2go! WELCOME Welcome to the Winter Edition! I hope you all had a fabulous Autumn and could enjoy some of the events, activities and places to go featured in the last edition of Raring2go! Winter is finally here and Christmas is all around us! We are all busily preparing for this magical time of the year spent with family and seeing the beaming faces of our loved ones. The “What’s on” guide features a range of fantastic events that families can enjoy in the run up to the big day and during the Christmas period. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and visit our website www.raring2go.co.uk/ bedford-and-biggleswade to subscribe to our monthly newsletters, enter our fantastic competitions and take advantage of our offers! Have a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year! Tilly xx 07855 952956 bedford@raring2go.co.uk p.s. Please remember to mention Raring2go! wherever you go! Copyright © 2023 by Gemini Print No part of the publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, mechanical or electronic, including photocopying & recording, or by any information storage & retrieval system, without permission in writing from the publisher. Published by Raring2go! Bedford Tilly Bartens Phone: 07855 952956, Email: bedford@raring2go.co.uk All information in the booklet is published in good faith. We do not guarantee the services and products from any business featured. Printers: Gemini Print: 01273 464884 Layout by Free Range Design: 01234 315493 General Competition Rules: No cash alternatives to prizes. Please refer to individual closing dates. Personal data only used to administer competitions. f Stay In Touch! Make sure that you re-subscribe so we can keep telling you about the great offers, competitions and things to do! @ www.raring2go.co.uk ? Are you getting your message across? Free Range design & print solutions helping you to crow about it I business cards I flyers I leaflets I logos I brochures I posters I banners I stickers I adverts... designed, printed, delivered. tara@freerange-design.co.uk www.freerange-design.co.uk

4 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! GIFT IDEAS 1 .co.uk Raring2go! Experience Gifts: Consider gifting experiences such as tickets to a concert, a cooking class, a spa day, or even a hot air balloon ride.These create lasting memories. Personalised Gifts: Personalised items like custom-made jewellery, monogrammed towels, or a photo book filled with cherished memories can add a personal touch. Subscription Boxes: There are subscription boxes for almost every interest, from gourmet food and wine to books, skincare, or even a monthly flower delivery. Homemade Gifts: Get creative and make something special like homemade candles, hand-knit scarves, or a batch of your favourite cookies. Charitable Donations: Donate to a charity or organisation that is meaningful to the recipient in their name.This is a thoughtful way to give back during the holiday season. Outdoor Gear: Consider gifts like a high-quality hiking gear, items of outdoor equipment, torch, rucksack etc or if you have a big budget, even a new bike. Digital Gifts: Gift them a subscription to a streaming service, an e-book or audiobook subscription, or a digital art class. Board Games and Puzzles: Encourage family time with a selection of fun board games, jigsaw puzzles, or brainteasing escape room kits. Remember to consider the recipient's interests and preferences when choosing an alternative Christmas gift to make it truly special. Different gift ideas for Christmas 2023 for your family and friends. If you haven’t considered it, there are different ways to give a gift… We have come up with 8 alternative gift ideas that can help you think outside the ‘Christmas box’ and find something special for your loved ones:

raring2go.co.uk 5 Raring2go! CAREER OPPORTUNITIES Right at Home Bedford Right at Home Looking for care at home for a loved one or your next career opportunity? Find out more about Right at Home Bedford. Right at Home Bedford is a high-quality outstanding homecare provider supporting adults in their own homes. Whether it’s a little extra help around the house, personal care routines, support with mobility needs, medication or bespoke dementia needs, Right at Home Bedford is here to help. Right at Home Bedford go above and beyond by putting client’s choices, wishes and preferences at the heart of everything they do and are proud to have been rated Outstanding by the Care Quality Commission. They strive to balance professionalism with an empathetic and thoughtful service. They recognise that the most important thing to a client is their daily experience of care. For families, they are a reassuring, reliable pair of hands and for clients they help them feel supported, respected and cared for. Right at Home Bedford invest heavily in their CareGivers - selecting them based on their passion for caring and life experience and provide ongoing training in-house to maintain high standards and development of the team. Are you a parent looking for an additional income or looking to get back into a career? Right at Home Bedford provides a unique opportunity to work flexibly around school hours or other family commitments, to earn more than the minimum wage and with access to excellent training and career development opportunities. If this sounds like you, Right at Home would love to hear from you. Take the first step to a rewarding role by getting in touch to find out more. 01234 481360 www.rightathome.co.uk

6 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! THINGS TO DO Make a beanie hat with Red Ted Art Materials need for finger knitting a beanie: Super Chunky Wool (works best to make the beanie nice and chunky), Pair of scissors, Your fingers Step 1 : How to Finger Knit Hold the wool comfortably with your thumb. Wrap the wool behind your index finger and in front of your middle finger, then behind your wedding finger and around your pinky. Then bring the wool in front of your wedding finger, behind your middle finger and around your index finger. You need to do it again. Wrap the wool in front of your middle finger, behind your index finger, and around your pinky. Continue bringing the wool in front of your wedding finger, behind your middle finger and then around your index finger, so that you will have two loops on each finger. Now you need to pull the bottom loop up and over the top loop. Do this with each finger in turn, so that you are left with one loop on each finger. Then start again, starting in front of your middle finger, making the loops, and pulling the wool over. Keep repeating these steps until you have a long enough piece that will fit around your head. Step 2 : How to connect strands of your beanie hat Now we are going to connect the two ends together. Run your thumb through the ridge on the back. The ridge is the back and the reverse side is the front. Face the ridged side in towards the centre, making sure you don’t twist it. Connect the two together by hooking your little finger first into the bottom loop, and then into the top loop of the end of the knitted piece. You will have three loops on your little finger. Then start knitting again as normal, wrapping the wool around your fingers. When you start to pull loops off your finger, just one thing... On your pinky finger, pull each loop up and over individually, starting from the bottom, leaving one loop on each finger again. Leaving one loop. Give it a tighten by pulling on the wool. Step 3 : How to add a row to your finger knitted beanie hat DIYThis time we only need to hook into one loop on the knitted piece. Find your next loop and hook your little finger into it. Then knit another row. Once again, on the little finger pull each loop off individually. Pull to tighten. Find your next loop and hook into it. Knit another row across. Keep knitting until the hat covers your head. Remember to keep trying on the hat for measurements. Step 4 : How to decrease Next stage is to make the top of your hat. We need to start decreasing. This time you need to pick up two loops from the knitted piece, so you have three loops on your little finger. Then start to knit another row. Keep repeating these steps until the top of your hat is almost closed. Leaving a small gap. Step 5 : How to decrease and finish your beanieStart casting off your fingers. Pull the first loop off and onto your next finger. And pull the bottom loop up and over the top. Do this on all your fingers, until you have one left. Then pull the wool through the last loop. Get scissors and cut the loop. To close off the top I laced through each loop across the top keeping it nice and tight, closing the top off completely. Make sure you keep pulling tight. You then just need to tie a knot in the wool to finish. If you’d like to see a video , here’s the full tutorial here https://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=p4IoOa_SMUE Many thanks to RedTedArt for sharing this fabulous Beanie creative. If you’d like to see so much more on crafting, visit redtedart.com

raring2go.co.uk 7 Raring2go! EDUCATION Bedford North 07341 583675 kumon.co.uk Boost your child's confidence Kumon's Maths and English study programmes work to build your child's confidence and inspire a passion for learning. To unlock your child's potential, get in touch for a free assessment. Bedford North Study centre 07341 583 675 Kumon’s Maths and English study programmes work to build your child’s confidence and inspire a passion for learning. To unlock your child’s protential, get in touch for a free assessment. Bedford North Study Centre 07341 583 675

8 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! AWARENESS DAYS Winter is here bringing lots of fun family times, events, awareness days and laughs. Here’s our top pick of things to do and get involved in this Winter. DECEMBER 4th- Tree Dressing Day- For those who haven’t put theirs up already, today’s the day! 7th Christmas Jumper DayA great reason to get those Colourful Christmassy jumpers out and stand proud in aid of Save the Children charity, learn more about it here, savethechildren.org.uk 9th-11th – Illumination Street Week- an annual event of celebration of festive lights, decorations and all things for the Christmas season to spread the festive cheer. 20th – Festival of Winter Walks- One for all the family that gets you out and about to enjoy the beauty of the Winter season. 24th-26th Christmas Time. All the build up to the big day, it’s time to celebrate the big man’s arrival… 31st New Years Eve/ Hogmanay. As we wave goodbye to 2023 and embrace the New year making resolutions and plans for the year ahead. Visit raring2go.co.uk for some suggestions for you and the family! JANUARY 2024 1st- Veganuary- The popular annual campaign and movement that encourages people to try a vegan lifestyle for the month of January… 4th – National Trivia DayDid you know that the fingerprints of koalas are so similar to humans that they can sometimes be mistaken for each other! Just like how humans have unique fingerprints, each koala’s fingerprints are also distinct… 17th Museum Selfie Day- A great reason for a family day out, why not visit your local museum and whilst you are there, take a Museum Selfie! 20th National Cheese Lovers Day- A cheesy day for all you cheese lovers out there! 25th Burns Night- A celebration of the life and poetry of the poet Robert Burns, the author of many Scots poems. The suppers are normally held on or near the poet’s birthday, 25 January. 27th National Chocolate Cake Day - We all love Chocolate Cake am I right? Need a chocolate cake recipe visit here, raring2go.co.uk or want to learn what other National Chocolate Days there are, visit here… www.chocolatier.co.uk FEBRUARY 4th British Yorkshire Pudding Day- who’s recipe is best? Mums, Grandmas or Chef James Martin… The answer is they all are, enjoy the celebration of the great old Yorkshire Pud! 13th Pancake Day- One of the nation’s favourite traditions making pancakes on Shrove Tuesday. If you need a recipe visit https://raring2go.co.uk/ activities/basic-pancakespancake-day/. 17th Radom Acts of Kindness day - Well this is just a day, we should all be kind every day of the year. Visit an elderly neighbour, donate to charity, post positive messages, whatever it is be kind… 17th Real Bread Week- you can’t beat home made bread and to celebrate Real Bread Week, why not try your own. For a great bread recipe, visit raring2go.co.uk.

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10 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! THINGS TO DO 1 .co.uk Raring2go! Family Cook-Off Night: Host a weekly or monthly family cook-off night where each member takes turns selecting a theme or cuisine. Everyone can work together to plan, shop for ingredients, and then prepare their chosen dishes.This not only promotes teamwork but also allows everyone to explore different culinary traditions. Outdoor Adventure Challenges: Plan a series of outdoor adventures or challenges like hiking to a scenic spot, geocaching, or orienteering. Create a "Family Adventure Passport" to track completed challenges and encourage friendly competition.This activity promotes physical activity and bonding in nature. Family Book Club: Start a family book club where you pick a book to read together and then have regular discussions about it. Choose a diverse range of genres and themes to cater to different interests within the family.You can even create a mini-library at home to keep all your family book club selections. DIY Home Improvement Projects: Undertake DIY home improvement or decoration projects as a family. Decide on a room or area to renovate or redecorate and involve each family member in the planning and execution. It's a productive way to improve your living space while learning new skills together. Language Learning Night: Dedicate one evening a week to learning a new language as a family.You can use language-learning apps, online resources or enrol in a course together. This not only enhances communication skills but also opens doors to exploring different cultures and travel opportunities in the future. Remember that the key to introducing something new for the family is to ensure that it's engaging, inclusive, and adaptable to everyone's interests and abilities. These activities can help strengthen family bonds and create lasting memories. Something New for You and the family… Things can get very samey once the festive season is over, so we have put together a few creative ideas to introduce something new for your family to do together:

12 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! HELPING HANDS What can One Broker do for you? Need a helping hand to protect the things that matter the most? In this article, our partner, One Broker, introduces their business and explains how their teams will put the right insurance in place for your needs. Whether you want to safeguard your business or your home and belongings, it’s essential to consider the types of insurance and levels of cover that you need. By having the right policies in place, you can rest assured that your home, assets and business are protected. At One Broker, we know that it can be difficult to find exactly the right policy. Which is why, no matter how complex your Personal or Commercial Insurance needs are, we will search the market to get the perfect fit. Who is One Broker? We are an independent insurance broker based in Norfolk and Cambridgeshire. We’ve been working with individuals and businesses for 40 years to help them find the suitable insurance, using our extensive knowledge and experience. Unlike online offerings, we put the personal touch first. We’ll get to know you and take time to answer your questions so that you can be completely confident in your cover. And if things do go wrong, you won’t be alone. We have an in-house Claims team who can support you throughout the claims process and help you to get the best possible outcome. Here’s a little snapshot of the cover we can provide: • Home Insurance • Motor Insurance (including Classic Vehicle Insurance) • Tenants Contents Insurance • Commercial Combined Insurance • Management Liability Insurance • Professional Indemnity Insurance This is just a little glimpse into the protection we can find for you. You can discover more on our website. Introducing Mark Ling If you’d like to find out more about how we can support you, you can get in touch with Associate Director Mark Ling. Mark plays a pivotal role in developing and maintaining relationships with our clients – including you! When he’s not busy providing the personal service we’re known for, he enjoys playing sport, including golf and football. He also loves spending time with his six-year-old son. Interested to know more? You can call Mark on 01223 949002 or drop him a line at mark.ling@onebroker.co.uk. Alternatively, head over to www.onebroker. co.uk to learn more about how we can help with your insurance needs. PROMOTION. One Broker is a trading style of One Broker (Cambridge) Ltd. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. CLASSIC VEHICLE INSURANCE Talk to us about your pride and joy, and discover how we can create a policy as unique as your vehicle. Get a quote today! 0330 055 2659 www.onebroker.co.uk/clubclassic PERSONAL INSURANCE • SPECIALIST SECTORS • BUSINESS INSURANCE PROMOTION. One Broker is a trading name of One Broker (Norwich) Ltd and One Broker (Cambridge) Ltd. Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Your vehicle is your passion. Whether it’s a true, modern or future classic, we share your enthusiasm and want to make sure it’s well protected.

raring2go.co.uk 13 Raring2go! HELPING HANDS DO YOU NEED INSURANCE? One Broker’s local and independent teams are on hand to find a policy to suit your individual needs. 01223 792265 www.onebroker.co.uk PERSONAL INSURANCE • BUSINESS INSURANCE • SPECIALIST SECTORS PROMOTION. One Broker is a trading name of One Broker (Cambridge) Ltd. Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. ONE BROKER GROUP Insurance & Risk Management From home and car to landlord and business insurance, we’ve got you covered! Coming Soon! 2024 School Vacancies in Bedfordshire Scan our QR code to join our Talent Pool.

14 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! GET FIT 1 .co.uk Raring2go! Set Clear Goals: Define your fitness objectives, whether it's losing weight, building muscle, improving endurance, or just staying active. Having specific goals will keep you motivated. Create a Workout Routine: Develop a structured exercise plan that includes a mix of cardiovascular, strength training, and flexibility exercises. Consistency is key, so aim for at least 3-5 days of exercise per week. Find an Accountability Partner: Team up with a friend or family member who shares your fitness goals. Having someone to exercise with and hold you accountable can make a big difference. Try New Activities: Make fitness fun by exploring different activities like hiking, dancing, swimming, or martial arts. Experimenting with new workouts can keep things exciting. Join a Gym or Fitness Class: If you prefer a structured environment, consider signing up for a gym membership or fitness classes like yoga, spinning, or HIIT. Use Technology: Download fitness apps or invest in wearable fitness trackers to monitor your progress, set reminders, and stay motivated. Prioritise Nutrition: A healthy diet is crucial for achieving your fitness goals. Focus on balanced meals with plenty of fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. Get Adequate Rest: Rest and recovery are essential for muscle growth and overall wellbeing. Ensure you're getting enough quality sleep each night. Stay Hydrated: Proper hydration is essential for maintaining energy levels and supporting your workouts. Drink plenty of water throughout the day. Track Your Progress: Keep a fitness diary or use a fitness app to track your workouts, nutrition, and how you're feeling. Celebrate your achievements along the way to stay motivated. Remember that getting fit is a journey, and it's important to be patient with yourself. Start small, gradually increase the intensity of your workouts, and stay consistent. Consistency is key to long-term success in achieving and maintaining your fitness goals. Get Fit for 2024 Getting fit for the New Year is a great goal, and there are many ways to achieve it. Here are 10 ideas to help you get started on your fitness journey:

raring2go.co.uk 15 Raring2go! CLUBS AND CLASSES Kumon’s maths and English study programmes work to build your child’s confidence and inspire a passion for learning. Fees vary. Please refer to your local study centre. To unlock your child’s potential, contact your local Instructor for a free assessment. Bedford South Study Centre Kirsten Putman 01234 268 608 kumon.co.uk FOR MORE INFO CALL: 07757 548324 EMAIL: JOEYFOOTBALLFUN@GMAIL.COM OR VISIT: E JOEYFOOTBALLFUN Sundays @ Brickhill Community Centre, MK41 7AF Saturdays @ Great Ouse Primary Academy, MK 40 4TJ Indoor football classes, fun games & themed exercises for toddlers & kids, 18 months+! FUN FOOTBALL CLASSES WITH JOEY FOOTBALL Boosts confidence Introduces structure Promotes bonding & friendship Encourages social skills & teamwork FREE TRIALCLASS!

PLACES TO GO 1. What type of attraction often features lifelike replicas of prehistoric creatures and is a popular destination for families? a) Science Museum b) Zoo c) Aquarium d) Dinosaur Park 2. Which type of recreational facility is designed for children to jump on trampolines and play in a safe environment? a) Ice skating rink b) Bowling alley c) Trampoline Park d) Art gallery. 3. In which type of venue can kids typically watch the latest animated movies on the big screen? a) Library b) Water park c) Cinema d) Supermarket. 4. What kind of outdoor space allows children to interact with and learn about various animals and plants? a) Botanical Garden b) Shopping Centre c) Amusement Park d) Theatre 5. Where can families go to learn about history through interactive exhibits and artifacts? a) Cinema b) History Museum c) Petting Zoo d) Car wash 6. Which type of establishment often features hands-on science exhibits and experiments for kids of all ages? a) Toy shop b) Science Museum c) Ice cream Parlour d) Gym 7. What kind of venue offers a wide range of books and often hosts storytelling sessions for kids? ) Sweet shop b) Bookshop c) Bowling alley d) Pizza place a 8. Where can kids enjoy slides, swings, and other playground equipment in a public setting? a) Hospital b) Park c) Cinema d) Airport 9. What type of establishment is known for serving ice cream, sundaes, and milkshakes, making it a favourite among children? a) Petrol station b) Pet store c) Ice cream Parlour d) Hairdressers 10. Which of the following places often offers swimming pools, water slides, and other aquatic attractions for families to enjoy? a) Library b) Water park c) Bowling alley d) Post of ce ) Library b) Water park c) Bowling alley d) Post of QUICK QUIZ Answers at the bottom of the page. No cheating! lley ANSWERS: 1. Dinosaur park 2. Trampoline park 3. Cinema, 4. Botanical garden 5. History museum, 6. Science museum 7. Bookshop, 8. Park 9. Ice cream parlour, 10. Water park

A spectacular interactive Christmas experience for all the family! Join Scattie Hattie, Farmer Fred and the Fiddlefaddlers at the Forest Centre as you try to get Fuddlers End Farm ready in time for Christmas. You will have an opportunity to meet Santa, take pictures and receive a small gift! Tickets: £15 child, £5 adult (under 12 months go FREE) Book online today at: WWW.MARSTONVALE.ORG/EVENTS Christmas with THE FIDDLEFADDLERS Thursday 21st - Friday 22nd December The Forest Centre Marston Moretaine Bedford, MK43 0PR A spectacular interactive Christmas experience for all the family! Join Scattie Hattie, Farmer Fred and the Fiddlefaddlers at the Forest Centre as you try to get Fuddlers End Farm ready in time for Christmas. You will have an opportunity to meet Santa, take pictures and receive a small gift! Tickets: £15 child, £5 adult (under 12 months go FREE) Book online today at: WWW.MARSTONVALE.ORG/EVENTS Christmas with Thursday 21st - Friday 22nd December The Forest Centre Marston Moretaine Bedford, MK43 0PR

18 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! WHAT’S ON Christmas What’s On Guide Christmas Illuminations Trail @ Wimpole Estate Various dates throughout Dec With new lights, a new trail and new memories to be made, Christmas at Wimpole has everything you need for an unforgettable time with friends and family, including a magical glimpse of Father Christmas along the way. Discover huge feathers floating high into the sky, encounter a sea of light stretching out into the distance, surround yourself with sparkle in the long glowing tunnel and see contemporary Christmas trees in all the colours of the rainbow. nationaltrust.org.uk Shuttleworth in Lights @ Shuttleworth 1 - 17 Dec Explore the world-famous Shuttleworth Collection and Swiss Garden in a way you’ve never seen them before! Literally shining the light on what makes it unique – the 199 year old Regency style Swiss Garden and world-famous Shuttleworth Collection full of vintage aircraft and vehicles. shuttleworth.org Christmas @ Wrest Park - An Enchanted Christmas Light Trail 1 Dec - 1 Jan Christmas at Wrest Park is a brand new, interactive light trail for 2023 set to bring colour, lights and play to Bedfordshire this December! With a host of light installations designed to fit in with the natural surroundings, expect the unexpected and allow the Christmas spirit to take over as you immersive yourself in a world of seasonal sparkle and festive cheer. english-heritage.org.uk Christmas Carols in the Stables @ Wimpole Estate Various dates throughtout Dec Have your spirits lifted by festive tunes, sip a warming hot chocolate while you enjoy, and perhaps even sing along with, some well-known yuletide favourites, sure to leave you feeling jolly. nationaltrust.org.uk Christmas @ Mead Open Farm Dates throughout Dec Enjoy the magic of Christmas at Mead Open Farm. There are so many great activities to enjoy! meadopenfarm.co.uk Christmas Fair @ Forest of Marston Vale 2 Dec Explore handmade gifts from local businesses, food stalls, decorations, and more all whilst enjoying live music and carols throughout the day. You can even buy your Christmas tree from a local Christmas tree seller! The café will be open all day selling festive favourites such as mulled wine and mince pies, as well as the usual menu. Something for the little ones: Visit Santa’s grotto, take part in fun festive craft activities, enter the colouring competition, and even post your letter to Santa in the special North Pole post box! marstonvale.org Christmas Tree Festival @ St Paul’s Church, Bedford 6 - 10 Dec This event never disappoints and this year the theme is Kings & Queens. Keep checking their Facebook page for updates! Christmas tree festival on facebook

Bedfordshire's Police & Crime Commissioner Festus Akinbusoye “Since we last spoke, I’ve visited many more primary schools in Bedfordshire. I continue with my focus of supporting the incredible teachers and schools we have in Bedfordshire by speaking at assemblies and I have attended nearly 100 schools so far. I believe that by educating our future generation about the consequences of poor choices early on, we can divert young people away from becoming involved in crime. I have the utmost respect for the hardworking teachers and support staff who do so much to not only teach, but also safeguard our future generation. I also want to touch on the county’s new knife crime campaign that has been recently launched by the Violence and Exploitation Reduction Unit (VERU) in partnership with Bedfordshire Police to take a stand against knife crime. Tackling knife crime remains a key priority for me as PCC and I support the forces zero tolerance approach to people that carry knives. I very much welcome this campaign and I’d like to ask for your support as parents. It’s not something one person or agency can solve. We all have a responsibility and can play our part. I encourage you to educate yourself on the work of the VERU and if you do need any support, please reach out to them. Finally, our next Annual Schools’ Debate competition event is planned for early next year. Please look out for more on this on our website soon and if you have any children in high school, we would love for you to encourage them to take part.” www.bedfordshire.pcc.police.uk We are calling for people to Think Twice. Think Life. And Just Drop It. We want to help parents and other adults raise the subject of knife crime with young people and have the conversation to improve their awareness and understanding. All young people should be encouraged to have this conversation. Even if you don’t think it is relevant to your child or the young person that you know – it is relevant to all young people. For more information, visit: bedsveru.org/for-parents That you can follow your local Community Policing team and get updates on their work via their Facebook page? Visit the website below to find out about your local community policing team: www.bit.ly/your_local_team Did you know? Young people, organisations, charities and community groups have all come together to take a stand against knife crime Scan Me

22 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! GIFT IDEAS 1 .co.uk Raring2go! 1. Voxblock boosts literacy skillsListening to stories helps develop a child's vocabulary, comprehension, and language skills. 2. Voxblock is ready-to-play as soon as it's unwrappedFree from Wifi and with no set-up - just press play! 3. Voxblock has hundreds of audiobooks Introduce children to a world of stories through a huge audiobook library. 4. Voxblock develops independence The player is easy-to-use and with no need for grown-ups, children can take control. 5. Voxblock is a gift that keeps giving Children enjoy Voxblock for years, not hours. This Christmas unwrap a Voxblock Starter Pack, it includes a Voxblock player, 3 audiobooks, and a protective bumper for £59.99. Buy at voxblock.co.uk reasons Voxblock makes the perfect Christmas gift Meet Voxblock: the easy-to-use screen-free audiobook player for children 3-12. Designed by parents, it empowers children to listen to audio stories independently. starter pack 99 £5 p £59. b aud the 00% connectivity free ong battery life build your child’s literacy as it's unwrapped ready-to-play as soon diobook player e screen-free voxblock.co.uk 1 lo a r

raring2go.co.uk 23 Raring2go! WHAT’S ON Alice’s Adverntures in Wonderland @ The Place, Bedford 8 - 24 Dec Follow the critically-acclaimed Pantaloons down the rabbit hole for their own hilarious take on Lewis Carroll’s nonsensical novel. All the unusual suspects are here: the mirthful Mad Hatter, the perpetually late White Rabbit, the quarrelsome Queen of Hearts and, of course, the adventurous Alice herself. A delightfully anarchic show that gets curiouser and curiouser with live music and audience interaction. A perfect addition to your Christmas celebrations, guaranteed to be a delight for the whole family. theplacebedford.org.uk Shuttleworth House Christmas Market @ Shuttleworth 9 - 10 Dec Explore the grand rooms and grounds of Shuttleworth House and Garden Suite from 10:00-16:00 and meander around a variety of local food, craft and gift stalls. shuttleworth.org Father Christmas & Nativity Barn @ Herrings Green Farm Various dates in Dec Add a little magic to the festive season with a visit to see Father Christmas in his nativity barn. He’s been busy all year preparing for the big day and has pulled out all the stops to bring some cheer to your visit to the farm. Plan a festive day out for all the family. birdsofpreycentre.co.uk The Snowman @ Quarry Theatre 9 Dec A young boy can’t believe his eyes one winter’s night when a snowman comes to life and an unforgettable adventure begins… Enjoy a special screening of the timeless classic animated film, The Snowman, featuring a live performance of Howard Blake’s musical score, specially adapted for brass band and performed for you by the Hitchin Band together with a pianist and young solo singer. Since 2017 Hitchin Band has performed the Snowman to over 7,000 people. For many it has become a must see. quarrytheatre.ticketsolve.com Breakfast with Santa @ Forest of Marston Vale 10 Dec A magical Christmas morning at the Forest Centre... Come and join a festive morning of delicious food and fun with Santa. You can choose from a buffet style cooked full English breakfast or American style pancakes (plus juice, or a hot drink). Santa will be walking around, meeting and talking to the children while they eat. He will also pose for photos and give out gifts to all the little ones! Don’t miss this chance to make some magical memories with your family this Christmas season. marstonvale.org Mind BLMK Mental Elf Festive Fun Run @ Shuttleworth 10 Dec Mental Elf is a unique event which focuses on bringing people together, not only to fundraise, but to raise awareness of mental health and wellbeing. It promotes the benefits of physical activity, connecting with people and doing something to help others. shuttleworth.org

24 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! HELPING HANDS Nurturing Your Skin Through Winter: A Guide by Rejuvena Laser & Aesthetic Clinic, Bedford As the winter chill sets in, so do the challenges for our skin. The cold, dry air can leave our skin feeling tight, flaky, and in need of extra care. At Rejuvena Clinic in Bedford, we understand the importance of maintaining healthy and radiant skin all year round. In this blog, we’ll share some expert tips to help you take care of your skin during the winter months. Hydration is Key: Winter air tends to be dry, which can lead to dehydration of the skin. We recommend using a hydrating / gentle cleanser to cleanse your face without stripping away your natural essential oils. Additionally, consider incorporating a rich, nourishing moisturiser into your daily routine to keep your skin hydrated and supple. Recommended skin care products / treatments to address hydration: • ZO Hydrating Cleanser • ZO Gentle Cleanser • ZO Daily Power Defence • ZO Hydrating Cream • Skin Booster / Profhilo Sun Protection: The sun’s UV rays can harm your skin, even on cloudy winter days. A quality, broad-spectrum sunscreen is a year-round essential. We suggest applying sunscreen to exposed areas, especially the face, neck, and hands, before stepping out and top it up every 2 hours. Tips on choosing a sun sunscreen: choose between SPF 30 - 50, that is non comedogenic, protects from UVA, UVB, Infrared, and HEV (high energy visible light). We prefer physical over chemical sunscreens as they are better tolerated even by sensitive skins and also the choice of sunscreen if you suffer with skin pigmentation disorders. Recommended skin care products / treatments to address sun protection: • ZO Sheer Fluid Broad Spectrum Sunscreen 50 Exfoliation Matters: Combat the build-up of dry, flaky skin by incorporating a gentle exfoliator into your skincare routine. Exfoliating helps remove dead skin cells, allowing your moisturisers to penetrate more effectively. Inclinic treatments such as professional medical grade chemical peels chosen specifically for your skin concerns also helps to get rid of dead skin cells and also stimulate collagen in the skin leaving your skin feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. Recommended skin care products / treatments to address exfoliation: • ZO Exfoliating Polish • ZO Enzymatic Peel • ZO Exfoliation Accelerator • ZO Retinol Skin Brightener Stay Hydrated from Within: Don’t forget to hydrate your skin from the inside out. Drinking an ample amount of water helps maintain your skin’s natural moisture balance. We recommend sipping on warm herbal teas, which not only hydrate but also provide antioxidants to combat winter-induced skin stress. Lip Care: Chapped lips are a common winter woe. Combat this issue by using a hydrating lip balm with ingredients like shea butter or beeswax. We also offer specialised lip treatments to revive and nourish your lips, keeping them soft and kissable even in the coldest weather! Conclusion: This winter, let your skin thrive with the expert care and guidance of Rejuvena Clinic in Bedford. By following these tips and incorporating our specialised treatments into your routine, you can ensure your skin stays radiant, healthy, and beautiful throughout the colder months. www.rejuvena.co.uk

Raring2go! HELPING HANDS raring2go.co.uk 25 Experience the pinnacle of aesthetic excellence at Rejuvena Clinic. We are a doctor-led aesthetic clinic committed to empowering individuals by enhancing their natural beauty, admin@rejuvena.co.uk 01234 958891 rejuvena.co.uk

26 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! COMPETITIONS Winter Competitions To enter all of these fantastic competitions and many more go to www.raring2go.co.uk/Bedford-and-biggleswade/competitions Win a family ticket to see Immersion Theatre’s Alice in Wonderland 9 April 2024 at the Castle Theatre, Wellingborough Multi award-nominated Immersion Theatre bring their trademark energy to their biggest, funniest, and most spectacular family musical to date: Alice in Wonderland! Follow Alice and the White Rabbit as they set off on a colourful, topsy-turvy adventure and meet a host of outlandish characters including Tweedle Dum and Tweedle Dee, the Queen of Hearts, the Cheshire cat and of course, the Mad-as a bat-Hatter! Closing date: 28.2.24 Win a £25 Vue Cinema voucher Raring2go! Bedford is giving two lucky readers the opportunity to each win a £25 Vue Cinema voucher. Closing date: 31.1.24

raring2go.co.uk 27 Raring2go! PLACES TO GO @marstonvalecrp 01234 832645 stephens@bedsrcc.org.uk www.marstonvalecommunityrail.org.uk f GroupSave Rail Tickets: Third off for adults in groups of 3-9, Children half price, under 5s free! Granny & Grandad travel half price with a Bedfordshire Bus Pass! Train Services are Back from Monday 20th November! Initially four services are running in each direction on Monday – Fridays during the morning and afternoon peak periods. A full rail replacement bus service (all stations and limited stop) will continue to operate at other times. The full timetable, including the return of a Saturday & Bank Holiday service, is expected to resume in early 2024. Please check the website for further details or call 01234 832645. Great Days Out on the Marston Vale Line this Winter! Wednesday 20th & Thursday 21st December Vintage Christmas Grotto at Bletchley Park Each child will receive a special Christmas gift. Advance booking required – call 01908 272673 Collect a free trail from admissions to find the reindeer around Bletchley Park! FOREST CENTRE Saturday 2nd December: Christmas Fair Santa’s grotto, festive crafts, colouring competition, and post your letter to Santa with the North Pole special post box’ Free entry! £1 charge to visit Santa’s grotto Wednesday 20th December: Jolly Christmas Cards Decorate a Christmas decoration to take home. Book at www.marstonvale.org Saturday 2nd December A Very Merry Bedford Christmas Market Festivities will include live music, street food, mulled wine, antiques, vintage, art and crafts, gifting, locally produced food and drink, flowers, wreaths plus the return of the Love Bedford Express Land Train Ride – free! Wednesday 6th December - Saturday 9th December St Paul’s Christmas Tree Festival 2023 This year’s event promises not only the usual display of more than 60 Christmas trees decorated by local groups but a full programme of choirs, music and other performances. The theme for 2023 is ‘Kings and Queens’. Events to go by train this Winter 2 for 1 discount at Bletchley Park with a valid rail ticket! 25% off at Gallone’s in The Arcade and The Pavilion at the Park in Bedford with your valid rail ticket!

28 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! HELPING HANDS

raring2go.co.uk 29 Raring2go! WHAT’S ON Winter Snow Trail @ Jordan’s Mill 12 - 31 Dec Join in the fun this December and explore the Winter Snow Activity Trail. Discover ten snow themed enclosures including a Snowman, Polar Bear, Snow Leopard, Igloo and more! Answer questions on your trail as you make your way round the ten numbered snowy sites! Then take your completed trail sheet back to the Mill Shop to claim your prize! £3.50 per entry (includes a prize) jordansmill.com Santa in Love @ Quarry Theatre 16 Dec Have you ever wanted to know a secret? A Christmas secret! Maybe you’d like to know where the fairy on top of the Christmas tree comes from, or why you never see a Christmas elf, or what exactly happened to Frosty the Snowman? You’ll never guess, so if you want to find out then join Santa and his friends in this fun filled family musical complete with games, giggles and all your favourite Christmas songs. Santa will be available after the show to meet your little ones and give them a present, so don’t forget to bring your camera to capture the smiles! quarrytheatre Jolly Christmas Crafts @ Forest of Marston Vale 20 Dec A festive and fun-filled craft session at the Forest Centre, where you can decorate your own Christmas themed object to take home and enjoy. All paints and utensils are provided for you to create your own unique masterpiece. marstonvale.org The Merry Little Party - Kid’s Disco @ Forest of Marston Vale 21 Dec The DJ will be playing Christmas party tunes and leading the party games. There will be prizes for the best dancers, jumpers and more, so don’t be shy and show us your moves! Don’t forget to say hello to Santa, who will be giving out gifts to all the children. This is a party you don’t want to miss! marstonvale.org Christmas with the Fiddlefaddlers 22 Dec A spectacular interactive Christmas experience for all the family... Join Jingles the elf in the enchanted forest where you’ll craft your special personalised token to Santa. There will be time for fun, games and a festive singalong to get you ready for your magical interactive show experience! Then you’ll move on to The Fiddlefaddlers Christmas show which will get everyone into the spirit of the season. You’ll join Scatty Hattie, Farmer Fred, Mushty, Kushty and Flobblehead as you try to get Fuddlers End Farm ready in time for Christmas! marstonvale.org Please go to www.raring2go.co.uk/ bedford-and-biggleswade/whats-on for all the latest information and details of what’s on in the area

30 raring2go.co.uk Raring2go! RECIPE Ingredients: 900 grams of stewing beef, cut into 1-inch cubes 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 large onion, chopped 2 cloves garlic, minced 1 litre of Beef stock ¼ litre red wine (optional) 4 carrots, peeled and sliced into rounds 4 potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks 2 celery stalks, chopped 2 bay leaves 1 teaspoon dried thyme 1 teaspoon dried rosemary Salt and pepper to taste 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (optional, for thickening) Chopped fresh parsley for garnish (optional) Instructions: Heat the vegetable oil in a large pot over mediumhigh heat. Add the cubed beef and brown it on all sides.You may need to do this in batches to avoid overcrowding the pot. Once browned, remove the beef from the pot and set it aside. In the same pot, add the chopped onions and garlic. Sauté them until the onions become translucent and fragrant, about 3-5 minutes. If you're using red wine, pour it into the pot and deglaze it, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom. Allow it to simmer for a few minutes to reduce slightly. Return the browned beef to the pot and add the beef stock. Stir to combine. Add the carrots, potatoes, celery, bay leaves, dried thyme, and dried rosemary to the pot. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bring the mixture to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cover the pot and simmer for about 2-3 hours, or until the beef is tender and the vegetables are cooked through.You can also cook it in a slow cooker on low for 6-8 hours. If you want a thicker stew, mix 2 tablespoons of allpurpose flour with a little water to make a paste and stir it into the stew. Cook for an additional 1015 minutes to thicken. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. Remove the bay leaves before serving. Serve your delicious beef stew hot, garnished with chopped fresh parsley if desired. It's perfect with some crusty bread or over cooked rice or mashed potatoes. Enjoy your homemade beef stew! Raring2make! FUN IDEAS FOR MAKING THINGS TOGETHER ‘Cakes are healthy too, you just eat a small slice’ Mary Berry www.raring2go.co.uk Here's a classic recipe for beef stew: For more great recipe ideas please visit our website: www.raring2go.co.uk