Saturday, 29 September 2012

Science With Sam Rolfe


Sam Rolfe came in to our studio on Monday and told us a little about the mysteries of science - chemistry, biology and astronomy.

Imaging molecules

A team working at IBM in Zurich imaged a single molecule called pentacene in 2009 but have gone on to image other larger molecules (inc. “Olympic rings”) using a technique called atomic force microscopy or AFM. This technique uses a small needle that is dragged over the surface of the molecules, measuring the bumps where the atoms are. “Similar” to getting a pen and drawing over a piece of paper that has sand under it and making a computer image of the places where the sand is. These experiments had to be done at temperatures of -268 degC and isolated from vibrations from its surroundings.

Life expected in deep biospheres

Sean McMahon and Jack O’Malley-James working at Aberdeen University with Professor John Parnell have suggested that life could be more prevalent than previously thought. Originally, estimates on planets that could bear life were constrained to having liquid water at their surface. Not too hot, not too cold “Goldilocks zone”. This new research suggests that we must take into account that liquid water can exist below the surface. As you go deeper into a planet the temperature increases, keeping water liquid. On Earth there is a deep biosphere, thought to extend down by several kilometres. The deepest known multicellular living creature is a worm found at depths of 1.3 km or 0.8 miles. This opens up the possibility for multicellular life on Mars, which, if it exists or ever existed, is widely thought to only probably be unicellular. Taking the deep biospheres into account, Sean McMahon suggests that there will be several times more habitable planets in the universe.

What to see in the night sky


22nd Sept – Autumn Equinox (12 hours day/night)
Those up early – Venus is the bright object in the eastern sky
Jupiter starts to rise before midnight in the evening skies
Those with a telescope Uranus and Neptune are currently visible during the night

Full Moon 30th Sept

Sun is reaching a peak in activity in its approximately 11 year cycle so we get more Coronal Mass Ejections or CME’s and so see a higher activity of aurora or “northern lights”. Not often but very occasionally might get them at these low latitudes, can get updates from: www.spaceweather.com can get email alerts about possible aurora sightings.

ISS http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/realdata/sightings/ or Google “when can I see the ISS”, top result. Currently going over, for any early risers, between 4 and 6:30 am, differing each day – the website gives precise timings and where to look. Check in the future for more favourable early evening sightings.

Meteor showers: Piscies, peak 20th Sept

Pisces rises around 8 or 9 pm, over head between 11 pm and 1 am, setting in the early morning after the Sun rises. So the meteor shower should be visible throughout most of the night. Not the highest rate of meteors compared to other showers, about 5 per hour maximum.

On Friday night (21st Sept) there were reports of bright meteors in the sky (NI, Scot, Midlands, East Anglia) – thought to be man-made space junk and not related to the weak Piscid meteor shower.

Featured scientist
Marie Curie, Polish born Physicist and Chemist, 1867 – 1934
Marie Curie and her husband, Pierre Curie studied radioactivity, discovering the elements polonium and radium, winning a Nobel Prize for Physics in 1903. Pierre was killed in 1906 by a carriage and Marie took over his teaching post at the University of Sorbonne in Paris, becoming the first woman to teach there. Having continued the work she and Pierre started, Marie won a second Nobel Prize, this time in Chemistry, in 1911. Their research led to the development of x-rays for medical applications and during WW1 Marie drove ambulances on the front line, with x-ray equipment on-board. In the 1920’s her health began to deteriorate and she died from leukaemia in 1934, which was due to her exposure to high-energy radiation over the years. Her daughter, Irene, also went on to win a Nobel Prize for Chemistry.

Featured website
Galaxy, Moon, Solar storms, planethunters, recover worldwide weather observations made by Royal Navy ships – helping with climate model projections, help translate old Greek documents to understand the lives of the people that lived in ancient Greece, help understand what whales are saying and explore the ocean floor identifying species that live there.

Friday, 28 September 2012

Interview With Kirstin from St Albans Bakehouse @BakehouseStA


On today's show we were joined by Kirstin from Bakehouse St Albans.  She was telling us all about the great St Albans cake off which will be taking place on Sunday 7th October. Anyone can enter as there are 3 different categories (Adult, Under 16 & Specialist Cake). The judging will commence at 3pm and the prize winners will be announced as soon as judging is completed. First prize in each category is £100 worth of Steamer Trading Vouchers and 4 weeks after the cake-off the winners recipes will be backed and sold with all proceeds going to the winners' nominated charities.
 
If you would like to enter The St.Albans Cake-Off  then click the link below! You have until the 1st of October!
http://www.localbakehouse.co.uk/#/great-st-albans-cake-off/4568594023

For more information you can visit -
http://www.localbakehouse.co.uk/                               
http://www.facebook.com/BakehouseStAlbans
http://twitter.com/bakehousesta

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Chris' Film Club: Infernal Affairs

Hong Kong actor Andy Lau is the highest grossing Hong Kong actor ever, and its his birthday today! Infernal Affairs sees a the police plant a mole in the Triads, and the Triads plant a
mole in the police. The film was also remade by Martin Scorsese as The Departed.




Click HERE to listen to the podcast

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Chris' Film Club: Terminator and Terminator 2: Judgement Day

Today is Linda Hamilton’s birthday- who plays Sarah Connor in the Terminator Movies. She will (in the film) one day give birth to the leader of the resistance after a robot apocalypse, which is why she is targeted by the machines.






Today we had the very talented Barry Palmer and David Duncan on the show



Worcestershire born singer/songwriter Barry Palmer, is one of contemporary music’s best kept secrets!  He provided all of the vocals for the 1974 hit The Bump by Kenny but his own music couldn't be more distant from the 70s glam-rock style of Kenny.

Barry Palmer and David Duncan (Barry's writing partner) performed two acoustic songs for us "Here to stay" and "Forbidden Fruit" both from his new album “Night Thoughts” released on the 17th September.

You can purchase “Night Thoughts” from http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/ASIN/B0083C35GI

For more information you can visit http://barrypalmermusic.com/

If you missed it you can use the listen again service to hear the show again! http://listenagain.radioverulam.com/

Tuesday, 25 September 2012

Science with Sam Rolfe


Sam Rolfe came in to our studio on Monday and told us a little about the mysteries of science - chemistry, biology and astronomy.

Imaging molecules

A team working at IBM in Zurich imaged a single molecule called pentacene in 2009 but have gone on to image other larger molecules (inc. “Olympic rings”) using a technique called atomic force microscopy or AFM. This technique uses a small needle that is dragged over the surface of the molecules, measuring the bumps where the atoms are. “Similar” to getting a pen and drawing over a piece of paper that has sand under it and making a computer image of the places where the sand is. These experiments had to be done at temperatures of -268 degC and isolated from vibrations from its surroundings.

Life expected in deep biospheres

Sean McMahon and Jack O’Malley-James working at Aberdeen University with Professor John Parnell have suggested that life could be more prevalent than previously thought. Originally, estimates on planets that could bear life were constrained to having liquid water at their surface. Not too hot, not too cold “Goldilocks zone”. This new research suggests that we must take into account that liquid water can exist below the surface. As you go deeper into a planet the temperature increases, keeping water liquid. On Earth there is a deep biosphere, thought to extend down by several kilometres. The deepest known multicellular living creature is a worm found at depths of 1.3 km or 0.8 miles. This opens up the possibility for multicellular life on Mars, which, if it exists or ever existed, is widely thought to only probably be unicellular. Taking the deep biospheres into account, Sean McMahon suggests that there will be several times more habitable planets in the universe.

What to see in the night sky


22nd Sept – Autumn Equinox (12 hours day/night)
Those up early – Venus is the bright object in the eastern sky
Jupiter starts to rise before midnight in the evening skies
Those with a telescope Uranus and Neptune are currently visible during the night

Full Moon 30th Sept

Sun is reaching a peak in activity in its approximately 11 year cycle so we get more Coronal Mass Ejections or CME’s and so see a higher activity of aurora or “northern lights”. Not often but very occasionally might get them at these low latitudes, can get updates from: www.spaceweather.com can get email alerts about possible aurora sightings.

ISS http://spaceflight.nasa.gov/realdata/sightings/ or Google “when can I see the ISS”, top result. Currently going over, for any early risers, between 4 and 6:30 am, differing each day – the website gives precise timings and where to look. Check in the future for more favourable early evening sightings.

Meteor showers: Piscies, peak 20th Sept

Pisces rises around 8 or 9 pm, over head between 11 pm and 1 am, setting in the early morning after the Sun rises. So the meteor shower should be visible throughout most of the night. Not the highest rate of meteors compared to other showers, about 5 per hour maximum.

On Friday night (21st Sept) there were reports of bright meteors in the sky (NI, Scot, Midlands, East Anglia) – thought to be man-made space junk and not related to the weak Piscid meteor shower.

Featured scientist
Marie Curie, Polish born Physicist and Chemist, 1867 – 1934
Marie Curie and her husband, Pierre Curie studied radioactivity, discovering the elements polonium and radium, winning a Nobel Prize for Physics in 1903. Pierre was killed in 1906 by a carriage and Marie took over his teaching post at the University of Sorbonne in Paris, becoming the first woman to teach there. Having continued the work she and Pierre started, Marie won a second Nobel Prize, this time in Chemistry, in 1911. Their research led to the development of x-rays for medical applications and during WW1 Marie drove ambulances on the front line, with x-ray equipment on-board. In the 1920’s her health began to deteriorate and she died from leukaemia in 1934, which was due to her exposure to high-energy radiation over the years. Her daughter, Irene, also went on to win a Nobel Prize for Chemistry.

Featured website
Galaxy, Moon, Solar storms, planethunters, recover worldwide weather observations made by Royal Navy ships – helping with climate model projections, help translate old Greek documents to understand the lives of the people that lived in ancient Greece, help understand what whales are saying and explore the ocean floor identifying species that live there.

Chris' Film Club: Reservoir Dogs

It's Michael Madsen’s (Mr Blonde) birthday today! He starred in this crime-thriller, which was also Quentin Tarantino’s first film.It also stars Madsen, Harvey Keitel, Eddie Bunker, Chris Penn, Steve Buscemi, Tim Roth and Tarantino himself as a gang that botch a heist (that you never see). Things go from
bad to worse.....



Click HERE to listen to the podcast

Interior Design with Gwendoline Alderton



Today we welcomed back interior designer Gwendoline Alderton for the latest tips in Interior Design.  As summer draws to a close we look ahead to Autumn and autumnal colours.  This season it's all about individuality and creating your own space.  There are four things Gwendoline's highlighted for us today: colour, geometry, adornments and 'fancy dress'

Colours were orange early on in the year, this season it's Burnt Amber, which is an orange/brown, to compliment those autumn leaves due to fall around about now.  If you're feeling a little bolder why not go for something like a Berry Red, or a Deep Plum/Blackberry?  These are all warm colours, designed to give your house a little cosiness during the colder months.

The second thing to look at is Geometry - no need to bring those old maths set squares out, but it does mean of course shapes - squares and triangles that go together to create unique patterns.  Gwendoline recommends going for loud and strong patterns.  These are mostly for use on wallpapers and feature walls but can always be used for curtain and cushion fabrics.  Make a statement!

Adornments always make a house a home, why not try a little lace on your curtains or for your bed, or frills on the cushions and sofas, even tassles and pom-poms can be used (myself and Danny are not convinced!)

Lastly we take a look at Fancy Dress - creating your own home and the 'Total Room'.  Gwendoline suggests Tartan wallpaper (!) in the lounge or hallway.  This can be anything from your subtle pale blues and lavenders mixable with greys, or the more traditional red/green look as favoured by our Highland friends.  Why not go for something completely outlandish with a Stag's Head (not a real one though, animal lovers), patchwork sofas which are a mix of patterns and materials.  Or even some fantasy-inspired lighting, some Mad Hatter teacup chandeliers?! That's certainly making some kind of statement!!

For all the inspiration you need, please see Gwendoline's ideas at:  www.ga-interiors.co.uk

Monday, 24 September 2012

Chris' Film Club: Forrest Gump

Today in 1957, President Dwight D. Eisenhower sends 101st Airborne Division troops to Little Rock, Arkansas, to enforce desegregation of Little Rock Central High School- and this is just one of the many historical events that Forrest Gump finds himself in the middle of! Stars Tom Hanks, Sally Field, Robin Wright and Gary Sinise.




Click HERE to listen to the podcast

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Travel Feature With Andy Jarosz

We were delighted to have our travel correspondent Andy Jarosz back in the studio today. Todays topic was hotels and how our temporary lodgings can make or break our holiday experience. We never seem to remember where we stay in amazing detail unless our rooms are amazingly well maintained or incredibly bad.

Before you book your holiday Andy told us that it's best to look up reviews of your prospective hotels. Online, people are only keen to write if they have been had exceptionally positive or negative experience.

We then asked listeners to send us in their thoughts of what makes a good hotel experience on twitter and our facebook page.  Some of our responses were:

"Comfortable beds, there's nothing worse then having a pillows that are no better then folded t shirts".

" No tattling on prices on WIFI".

"Good service and nice food."

It seems most of us don't mind shelling out a bit on cash on our holidays as long as the smiles are genuine and we aren't bled drying for a number of sneaky charges and taxes that weren't on the advertised priced.



Have you had any interesting hotel experiences? Why not share them on our blog?






If you wish to read more from Andy Jarosz go to his website:

Chris' Film Club The Damned United

Brian Clough died today in 2004. This film is a representation of his terribly unsuccessful 44 days in charge of Leeds United. The film has the look of a TV movie but is carried by a very strong performance from Michael Sheen.

Comedian Stephen K Amos on Drivetime - & giving tickets away for his new show at the Alban Arena!


On Today's show we were joined by comedian Stephen K Amos on the day of the launch of his new book "I Used To Say My Mother Was Shirley Bassey".  He very kindly gave listeners the chance to win a pair of tickets to see his new show when it comes to the Alban Arena on Sunday 7th October.  To enter the competition, click here.

If you missed the interview you can hear it for up to a week after broadcast at www.radioverulam.com/listenagain

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Chris' Film Club Batman The Movie

Batman The Movie (1966)

Adam West's birthday (he's 84) today! This big screen version of the Caped Crusader's tv show. Starring West, Burt Ward, Lee Meriwether, Cesar Romero, Burgess Meredith and Frank Gorshin. This film is surreal and hilarious.

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Chris' Film Club This is spinal tap trailer

This is Spinal Tap

Fred Willard's birthday is today. This film is a Classic 'mockumentary' following a British rock band as they tour America. It stars Christopher Guest, Michael McKean, Harry Shearer and Rob Reiner.



Today we had in Sheba Promod, expert in Indian cookery

Today we welcomed Sheba Promod to tell us all about the delights of Indian Fusion cuisine.  Fusion food is a general term for the combination of various forms of cookery and comes in several forms. Regional fusion combines different cuisines of a region or sub-region into a single eating experiencewhich involves the mixing of different ingredients.  This month's recipe was the tasy-sounding Avocado and Curry Leaf Chutney.  With a preparation time of 10-15 minutes, this is the perfect canape for those dinner parties and can be pre-prepared - make sure to add a splash of lemon juice though to keep it fresh!


Avocado & Curry Leaf chutney

Fully aware of the fact that these are not a fruit traditionally associated with anything remotely Indian, I strongly urge you try it once. Unknown to many, avocados do grow in the tropical climate of Kerala and are usually harvested in mid-July-August. My mother-in-law is blessed with an enormous avocado tree in her garden which appears to bear more of this delightfully buttery fruit that can be consumed in one season. A bulk of this garden harvest of usually graces the fruit bowls of many a fortunate neighbour, soon to be topped with a healthy measure of sugar prior to eating. This might seem particularly strange when they are more commonly known in their guise as guacamole.
This recipe does not have the usual luscious, sticky like characteristics of a so called ‘chutney’ and more to the point, it needs to be prepared as close to the serving time as possible due to the discolouring of the flesh. However, it can be made up to an hour or so before serving and as long as it is kept covered, the change in colour can be prevented. The lemon juice obviously helps to work its magic in this. I had added the urad dal as an optional ingredient here. By no means should you feel that the chutney will be incomplete in its flavour should you omit it; that’s far from the truth. However the urad dal gives an additional nuttiness and delightful crunch that is almost reminiscent of popping candy. With or without, both are addictive in equal measure.
The first time I made this, I slathered it on some hot toast as a light lunch but needless to say, this seems to combine gloriously with nearly everything that’s put to the test. The most recent favourite for me is topped on some sourdough crispbread which I served at a recent dinner party as a light canapé prior a rather packed mains and I can tell you they were gone in a flash!

Ingredients
Whole spices
¾ tsp black mustard seeds
2 dried, whole red chillies

1 medium, ripe avocado
1 tbsp vegetable or coconut oil
½ tsp urad dal (optional)
¼ medium onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
6-7 curry leaves
½ green chilli, finely chopped
2 tbsps fresh coriander leaves, finely chopped
1 tsp lemon juice
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp coarse black pepper

Heat the oil in a small pan and fry the mustard seeds, whole red chillies, curry leaves and urad dal if and fry for 5-10 seconds until the mustard seeds have popped. Add the onions and garlic fry on a low-medium heat for 8-10 minutes until they are soft and sweet; be careful not to brown them as this can result in a slightly bitter chutney.
Once fried, transfer the mixture to a large bowl and leave aside for a few minutes to cool. Once cooled, scoop out the avocado and add to the bowl along with the chopped coriander, salt, pepper and lemon juice. Using a fork, smash the avocado, ensuring that the fork runs through the rest of the contents in the bowl whilst you are doing this. This just helps to release the sweet and warming flavours of onions and mustard seeds
Serve immediately.

for more information about Sheba, her cookery courses and recipes go to

New Music Playlist w/c 17th September 2012

Hi Drivetimers

Here is our new music playlist for the forthcoming week:

Andy Burrows - Because I Know That I Can
Beth Hart - Baddest Blues
Emeli Sandé - Read All About It Pt lll
Emilia Mitiku - So Wonderful
Jack Savoretti - Breaking The Rules
Joe McElderry - Here's What I Believe
Josh Osho - Giants
Katie Melua - The Walls Of The World
Keane - Disconnected
Kovak – Living The Dream

Leona Lewis - Trouble
Michael Kiwanuka - Bones
MIKA - Celebrate
Muse - Madness
Nell Bryden - Sirens
Nickelback - Trying Not To Love You
Owl City and Carly Rae Jepsen - Good Time
Paul Carrack - When My Little Girl Is Smiling
Ren Harvieu - Do Right By Me
Richard Hawley - Seek It
Ronan Keating - Fires
Roxette - The Sweet Hello, The Sad Goodbye
The Beach Boys - Isn't It Time
The Overtones - Loving The Sound
The Script feat. will.i.am - Hall Of Fame
Tom Jones - (I Want) To Come Home
Van Morrison - Open The Door (To Your Heart)

Items in BOLD are new additions

Our featured track for this week is Because I Know That I Can by Andy Burrows:


Monday, 17 September 2012

Chris' Film Club Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior



Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior


Today is Bruce Spence's birthday. Spence played the Gyro Captain opposite Mel Gibson's Mad Max in this low-budget, post-apocalyptic classic.The premice of the film revloves around the fact that oil has become scarce and various tribes fight for control of it.



Friday, 14 September 2012

The Radio Verulam Film Guide - 14th September 2012

Having fallen out last week, Simon and Danny were back in the studio to make friends once again. They swapped pleasantries and small gifts (Danny made Simon a necklace out of macaroni and Simon had spelled out 'I'm Sorry' on a piece of card using finger-paints) and then decided they were the 'bestest fwends evr!' (their words, not mine). They are now playing conkers and drinking chocolate milk before their mums call them in for dinner.

Ok, that was a lie, but Simon was in the studio to talk about the box office top 10 and the best films on free-to-air television for the coming week.


Friday
Sweeney!
9.00pm – 11.05pm
ITV4


Saturday
The Vikings
4.30pm – 7.00pm
5USA


Sunday
Rain Man
9.00pm – 11.45pm
ITV3


Monday
Romancing the Stone
6.55pm – 9.00pm
Film4


Wednesday
Crazy Heart
9.00pm – 11.10pm
Film4


Thursday
Cool Runnings
4.55pm – 7.05pm
ITV2





Val Langford from Abbeyfield

Tonight we were joined in the studio by Val Langford from the charity Abbeyfield that helps support older members of society.

Val spoke about the events that are taking place across the county during 'Remember a Charity' week. This involves 140 UK-wide charities and it highlights the importance of gifts-in-wills. Many people aren't aware that they can donate to charities in their will and Remember a Charity will try and correct that.

On Wednesday 19th September, Abbeyfield are having a stall on St Albans market and handing out charity tea bags so people can go home, have a tea and think about charity. There will be 6 charities taking part and will have a lot of information on all the good work they do.

Abbeyfield is a charity that provides housing, support and care for people at different stages of later life and helps them to try and live full, active and happy lives.

For more information on Remember a Charity you can visit their website here and you can find Abbeyfield's website here.

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Today we had Ian Murtagh from The Crescent organisation.


The crescent is a support group for people with HIV & AIDS and has been established in St.Albans for over 20 years. They provide help and education for HIV & AIDS and offer tests and counselling for victims and their family.

The charity has lost all it's financial backing from Hertfordshire County Council and the NHS as they have moved all funding to a different charity.  There has been no reasoning or evidence as to why they no longer have the support of Hertfordshire County Council and as a result all employees were made redundant and have now come back as volentees to the organisation.

If you would like to make a charitable donation to help keep there door open then you can go to

http://www.thecrescent.org.uk/

For more information on the situation The Crescent are facing you can also go to

http://savethecrescent.wordpress.com/



Chris' Film Club: The Spy Who Loved Me

Today is actor Richard Kiel's birthday, so we're talking today about the 10th Bond film; The Spy Who Loved Me. It features Richard Kiel as the steel tooth villian known as "Jaws". It stars Roger Moore as James Bond and that famous ski jump off a cliff.


If you wish to hear the podcast version of the review click HERE.

Wednesday, 12 September 2012

Chris' Film Club: Inception

Today is film composer Hans Zimmer's birthday so today's film is Inception. It's directed by Christopher Nolan and starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Ken Wantanabe, Ellen Page, Tom Hardy, Marion Cotillard, Michael Caine, Cillian Murphy and many more. This intelligent blockbuster sees Leo and his team of espionage specialists going into peoples dreams to plant ideas. The film allows the audience to come to it's own conclusion which is refreshing.




If you wish to hear the podcast of this review click HERE.

Paul Carrack's 'Good Feeling' album


Here we have a soulful and relaxing album which contains a good number of catchy and uplifting tunes ('Good Feeling','Marmalade Moon', 'Nothing Without You' and 'Time to Move On') balanced nicely with matured /slow sauntering tempo-ed tracks ('Long Ago', 'Make It Right', 'From Now On'). Rock at its very most mature. With Carrack's soft vocals ('Make it Right' and 'If I Should Fall Behind') and tuneful melodies as well as fantastic instrumentation and offering of a variety of paced tunes the album contains some shining tracks.

With 'Good Feeling' as a finger-clicking-good opening rock track to the album the positive vibes continue with jazz influenced 'I Don't Wanna Lose Your Love' which is also very singalong-able. Furthermore, 'Marmalade Moon' has some awesome instrumental builds and fills. With saloon styled piano and a sax line which punches catchy melodies this track will make you want to hum, sing and play some kind of imaginary instrument, be it air drums or air sax.

'Nothing Without You' provides the soulful and smooth love tune of the album. With wa-wa guitar fills, seductive brushes on the drums and bluesy melodies, its a sure tune to coo to your partner. Similarly, 'If I Should Fall Behind' provides a reliable and sturdy romantic tune.

Harmonies of 'Make it right' offer something slightly more interesting to listen to. With compelling musical shifts and written in a darker key than than the rest of the album it stands out somewhat as a track of intriguing messages.

 Overall, the album offers well constructed tunes, is well structured and showcases aged rock at its best.

Fave tracks; 'Good Feeling', 'Marmaade Moon' and 'Make it Right'.


Tuesday, 11 September 2012

Chris' Film Club: The Incredibles

It's Director Brad Bird's birthday so todays film is Disney and Pixars The Incredibles is about a family with superpowers who have to hide their talents after superheroes are outlawed.
Very funny for both adults and children and became a massive hit for Pixar.

To listen to the podcast of this review click HERE.

Family & Lifestyle coaching with Sharon Lawton


This evening we spoke to Sharon Lawton who is a family and lifestyle coach who runs courses for parents and families.The services that Sharon offers cover such issues as interview skills for employment or university places and anger management.
The courses primarily cover the West Herts area and most of them are free of charge as they are funded by the county council, other courses incur a small charge.
Details of the services offered and courses on offer can be found at the web site natural-flair.co.uk

Monday, 10 September 2012

Cititzens Advice Bureau Feature with Elizabeth Crampton

   Elizabeth was back giving some more excellent information on how to keep the wolf from the door. Winter is coming and we will soon see our energy bills rise. It's vital in the coming months to regulate the temperature of your house. However for those who are on benefits or pensions it's hard to keep up with the energy bills.
  •  It's important NOT to ignore the problem and face it head on.
  • Contact your supplier, your the customer and they should be able to get you onto a payment scheme where you can divide the payments.
  • See if your applicable for any benefits that can help with bills and insulations. The latter is a sure fire way to keep the heat from escaping.
Elizabeth also talked to us about door to door salesmen. Again the elderly can become easy prey for their smooth talking and hard sales techniques. Be wary of comments such as " I can't leave today without a sale" or "This offer is on for today only"

Remember don't sign on the spot! If in doubt ask a friend or family member for advice. Or look up their company or for deals by other companies or sellers. The internet is an excellent and effeciant source of information for this kind of research.

  Finally she talked to us about dentists. Visiting is usually a painful affair anyways, but usually the cost can also leave patients a bit sore. Some dentists tell us that certain services aren't available on the NHS so we are coaxed into paying private service prices. Don't forget you are the customer, so you have the right to question, complain and change your dentist. If you would like information on what services are available on the NHS or where you local NHS Dentist is go to www.nhs.uk/
  
If you would like more information or to contact the Citizens Advice Bureau go to: www.stalbans-cab.org




Chris' Film Club: Who Framed Roger Rabbit

It's Amy Irving's birthday (she provided the singing voice for Jessica Rabbit) so todays film is Who Framed Roger Rabbit. It's directed by Robert Zemeckis and stars Bob Hoskins, Kathleen Turner, Christopher Lloyd and Charles Fleischer.  It's mix of live action and animation, the film sees Roger Rabbit (a toon) accused of murder and he turns to PI Eddie Valiant to find out the truth and keep him safe. 



To Listen to the podcast click  HERE.

Friday, 7 September 2012

The Radio Verulam Film Guide - 7th September 2012

Tonight Simon joined Danny in the studio for an informal debate on macroeconomics. Danny put forward a well reasoned argument for the use of Keynesian economics and aggregate demand. Simon countered with the classic Austrian School criticism that Keynesian economics is fundamentally too collectivist and leads to business cycles that cripple economies. The conversation was civil until Danny said that Simon was a fan of the Modigliani-Miller theorem and Simon felt compelled to hit Danny over the head with a nearby copy of Keynes' The Economic Consequences of the Peace. They are no longer talking.

Ok, that was a lie, but Simon was in the studio to discuss the box office top 10, the new releases and the best films on free-to-air TV for the coming week.


Friday
District 9
9.00pm – 11.05pm
Film4


Saturday
Oldboy
11.00pm – 1.25am
Film4


Sunday
The Bridge on the River Kwai
3.00pm – 6.10pm
Yesterday


Monday
The Pursuit of Happyness
9.00pm – 11.25pm
5*


Lethal Weapon
10.00pm – 12.10am
Channel 5


Tuesday
Get Carter
10.00pm – 12.20am
ITV4


Thursday
The Wrestler
11.10pm – 1.20am
Film4








Thursday, 6 September 2012

Chris' Film Club Do the Right Thing

Rosie Perez’s birthday is today. Do the Right Thing is a Spike Lee film set in Brooklyn on the hottest day of the year, and a series of unfortunate events ramp up racial tension in the neighbourhoodn it stars Lee, Perez, Danny Aiello, Giancarlo Esposito, John Turturro and Bill Nunn.


"Sopwell: A History and Collection of Memories" Book Release with Sandy Norman.

Today we were privileged today as local author and historian Sandy Norman was our guest on the show telling us about her latest book.

"Sopwell: A History and Collection of Memories" features the rich and diverse history of Sopwell in St Albans. The book starts from medivel times and features Sopwell Manor, early roads and pre and post war housing and industry. The final chapter takes a look at what local children did for leisure!



It also contains interviews and intimate and rare photographs from 20 members of the Sopwell Resident Association.  The cover also features a beautiful water colour painting of Cottonmill Lane by JH Buckingham.  Whilst this is not Sandys' first book, she definitely sees this latest offering as a labour of love.

The book is reasonably priced at £15.00 and is available at local retailers (Waterstones, The Town Hall, Tourism and Information Centre).  The book has been out since 21st May and has been well received by purchasers from around the globe. So why not pick up a copy?





If you also wish to find out more about The Sopwell Residents Association or get involved with the group click on the following link:

www.sopwell.org.uk

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

Chris' Film Club Hot Fuzz

It is Paddy Considine’s birthday today. Hot Fuzz stars PC Nicholas Angel (Simon Pegg) who moves to a sleepy village and a series of mysterious deaths arouse his suspicions. The film also stars Nick Frost, Jim Broadbent, Timothy Dalton and Rafe Spall. It is a funny and gory, homage to Hollywood action films of the 80s and 90s.

Faff Free Cooking with Jackie Johnson - Greek Spinach & Feta Pie (Spanakopita)

Faff-Free Cooking with Jackie Johnson – Greek Spinach & Feta Pie (Spanakopita)

My motto has always been ‘never trust a skinny cook!' I do like to share recipes that I know work for me. They are not necessarily of my invention – but I will always give you the origin and maybe the story behind them! These recipes are relatively easy to make – hence the title, Faff-Free Cooking

So todays treat is …. Greek Spinach & Feta Pie – a late summer supper dish

Ingredients

2 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion chopped finely
500g thawed weight of frozen spinach
4 tbsp chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
3 beaten eggs
200g Greek feta cheese
75g butter - melted
270g pack of Jus –Rol filo pastry (6 sheets of filo to a pack)


Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 190C/Gas 4 and grease a 30cm x 20cm shallow baking tin.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan and gently cook the chopped onion until soft and leave to cool
  3. In a large bowl, mix together the thawed spinach (be sure to press as much excess water out of the spinach as you can) with the cooked onion, flat leaf parsley, dill, crumbled feta, beaten eggs and season well with a little salt and plenty of black pepper.
  4. Take the first sheet of filo pastry (it is very thin and delicate) and line the bottom and the sides of the baking tin with it. Brush with the melted butter and repeat with two more sheets of pastry. Keep the filo covered with a damp tea towel to prevent it drying out.
  5. Spread the filling over the pastry and top with the remaining pastry sheets, brushing each with butter and tucking down the edges.
  6. Using a sharp knife, score the top layers of the pastry into 6 squares.
  7. Bake for 40 mins until golden brown.


Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Local Tourism Feature with Charles Baker

Charles made his monthly visit to the studio to bring us up to speed on all the exciting goings on in St Albans.

   For those interested in English history and culture, you may be interested in the Heritage Open Days!(6th - 9th September.) It's completely free and it's being held in various parts in St Albans where you can get access to local historical sites which aren't normally open to the public. The Oaklands College Mansion built in the 18th Century is being opened to the public for the first time this Sunday.

  There's also a number of walks being organised for the the week including the very popular St Albans Giant Monopoly in which you choose from 2.5 mile and a 4.5 mile routes so you can take in local sites and attractions on this fun family day out.

 You can also come and visit us here at Radio Verulam! Come see what makes us tick above the Courtyard Café on Hatfield Road.

      Charles also told us about this years St Albans Food & Drink Festival. This goes on from 25th September - 7th October. There's a number of tongue tantilising events in including a Risotto Making Class at Carluccios in Christophers Place. There's the Camra St Albans Beer Festival at the St Albans Arena and many many more festivities taking place. All showcasing the various cultures and flavours of St Albans.

For more information on The Heritage Open Days and St Albans Food and Drink Festival and  go to:


enjoystalbans.com

Or for the Heritage Open Days Nationally check out:

heritageopendays.com

Chris' Film Club LA Confidential

Gangster Micky Cohen’s birthday (he would be 99 today) La Confidential is an epic crime drama and stars Guy Pearce, Russell Crowe, Kevin Spacey, Kim Basinger, James Cromwell and Danny DeVito. The arrest of notorious gangster Micky Cohen leads to a power vacuum in the LA underworld and it is down to 3 cops to work out who is now controlling everything.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Chris' Film Club Platoon

It's Charlie Sheen's bithrday today. Platoon is a classic Vietnam War film with Sheen’s young private caught between two possible mentors, the tough and uncompromising Barnes (Tom Berenger) and the charismatic Elias (Willem Defoe). Platoon is written and directed by Oliver Stone (who served in Vietnam as a young man).



Herts & Middlesex Wildlife Trust

Wild About Wetlands
Saturday 8th September, Rickmansworth
12pm-4pm
Stocker's Lake Nature Reserve, Rickmansworth
Come along to this family event at Stocker’s Lake to learn about the wetland wildlife of the Colne Valley with children’s activities, guided walks, face painting and more. Find us along the Causeway between Stocker’s Lake and Bury Lake.
Part of Our Wetland Wildlife weekend, with Wildlife Trust events happening across the UK.
Contact Jennifer Gilbert tel: 07909 914962 for more details.

Frogmore Meadow Walk
Sunday 9 September, Sarratt
A guided walk (2-3 miles) with warden Gerald Salisbury around this recently extended SSSI Trust reserve along the River Chess at Frogmore Meadow near Sarratt. Optional pub lunch.
Meet at 10am at Mill Farm (TL024988) Chenies, immediately north of River Chess. Car share 9.15am Campus West Car Park, Welwyn Garden City.
Contact: Penny at Mid Herts Local Group, tel: 07761 712245