News and events

Tinker, tailor, soldier, spy

29 May 2018

Simon Heptinstall puts on his trilby to meet spy expert Professor Andrew. It’s early evening. A forbidding mist hangs over west Wiltshire. An unfamiliar dark car screeches away on the wet cobbles. Under the streetlight, a tall figure appears from the gloom, wearing a trilby and dark overcoat. The stranger hands me a briefcase. “The rabbit is in the haystack,” he says, confirming the secret password...

The secret life of chalk streams

29 May 2018

​Sam Stork from Wiltshire Wildlife Trust’s Water Team reveals what lies beneath. To the inexperienced eye a river seems a simple thing. The elegant sweep of the channel with banks lined with reeds, water forget-me-not and purple loosestrife; otter and water vole peeping out of the vegetation and wild brown trout leaving ripples on the surface. However, dig a bit deeper and scoop up a handful of the river bed and you will discover an entirely different world.

What's on in May

06 April 2018

Specialist plant fairs and open gardens beckon, plus the chance to meet Paul Martin of Flog It!

News from Around the County

06 April 2018

Would ewe baa-lieve over 1,000 lambs born? THE ARRIVAL of hundreds of single lambs, twins and triplets made for an exciting and successful first Lambing Weekend at Wiltshire College. Mothering Sunday also saw the arrival of one set of quads, which was a treat for those visiting the lambing sheds. The cold weather and snow at the end of February, saw lambs start to arrive a little earlier than planned, with more than 600 being born ahead of the event.

Singing the praises of Salisbury in spring

06 April 2018

​Over recent weeks the eyes of the world have been focused on Salisbury, as it finds itself at the centre of an international incident, with a former Russian spy and his daughter being mysteriously poisoned by a nerve agent.

Adoring bold, bad and beautiful Diana Dors

06 April 2018

WHEN SWINDON Siren Diana Dors was young she would close her eyes and dream of owning a mansion, a swimming pool and a beige telephone. She was to grow up a superstar who had all those things, becoming the youngest person to own a Rolls-Royce. ‘Britain’s answer to Marilyn Monroe’ died young at the age of 52 and perhaps never reached her full potential, but she left behind some valuable films, and warm sentiments among her legion of fans. One of those is artist Anna Mazzotta. The two women are inextricably linked as we will find out.

Wherever did you get that hat? Do tell!

06 April 2018

​A framed photograph of a demure Catherine Middleton wearing a beautiful and barely there feathered headpiece hangs in the Wiltshire showroom of milliner Vivien Sheriff. It was taken during Kate’s first official engagement in Anglesey in February 2011, before her marriage to Prince William. Despite a fierce wind on an incredibly grey day, the headpiece, fixed by an invisible comb, didn’t move an inch and proved the perfect complement to a cream tailored military-style coat by Katherine Hooker.

A street named Elsie Knocker Grove

06 April 2018

​I realise that I come from a very sheltered background, but to me a knocker was always a thing on your front door. How was I to know that it’s a rude word in several contexts? It came about when Marlborough Town Council was asked to suggest names for the roads on a new estate. A colleague came up with the splendid suggestion that, in the centenary year of the ending of the First World War, it would be appropriate to name them after people who returned, as against those who never did, whose names are on the war memorial.

Wiltshire Life Homes and Gardens supplement

06 April 2018

​Wiltshire Life's Homes and Gardens supplement focuses on restoration and regeneration, whether that be turning a historic but water-ravaged wreck into the beautiful B&B, Prince Hill House, once a meeting place for Churchill and Eisenhower, or successfully negotiating the process of a grand residential building project.