The Urban Guide to the Countryside
Surrey Edition


Wouldn't you though?

I know there are more important things in life than pretty packaging, but the classic blue bottle of Neal's Yard Remedies lotions gets me every time. And this collaboration with Deliciously Ella – the queen of healthy eating – is rather, um, delish.

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Snuff out those winter sniffles

19 Oct 2016

Summer has ended, the leaves are turning, dusk is gathering – and there’s no doubt that cold and flu season is in full effect. Last week, with a chill in the air and a tickle in her throat, Muddy writer Zoe Dudgeon headed out for an evening with Ella Mills, hoping to pick up some of her healthy lifestyle tips.

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Did you win the Thornbury Castle comp?

19 Oct 2016

Off with her head! Sorry, just channelling a bit of Henry VIII there. He honeymooned with Anne Boleyn at Thornbury Castle, just described in The Sunday Times on the weekend as one of the Top 100 hotels in the UK, and the latest competition on Muddy, harbinger of quality, style and, er, a certain drunken je ne sais quoi.

Anyway, we have a winner. Alas there can only be one lucky gal or gent, and this time round it goes to Claire Williams.

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Muddy reviews: Chicago

18 Oct 2016

There are some major gaps in my musical history and Chicago is definitely one of them. Winner of six Tony and two Olivier awards, it ran in the West End for 15 years, and is still running on Broadway – and yet I still managed to miss it. Anyway I’ve now put that to rights because I saw the first night of Chicago at Woking’s New Victoria Theatre last night and can report what probably everyone else in the UK knows – it’s mighty good

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Wow! A luxury Environ facial that works wonders

12 Oct 2016

There are some undeniable benefits to writing Muddy Stilettos. A legitimate excuse to wear elasticated trousers for food reviewing purposes. Walking 5 metres from bedroom to office (known until 8.55am as the kitchen table). Seeing more musicals than is strictly necessary for theatrical reviews. And perhaps, more than anything, trying out facials.

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Strictly fever: are these the best dances ever?

7 Oct 2016
PIXIE LOTT - Strictly Come Dancing

If Strictly Fever has hit your household then – like me – you may be casting your mind back to you favourite dances from previous years (or – also like me – some of your favourite professionals wearing tops open to their navel!).

Well it seems great minds think alike as Jo over at Muddy Norfolk has been mulling over this very thing (the tangos not the totty). Here’s what she says:

‘First I re-called a particularly memorable Sala performed by Jake Wood of Eastenders’ fame.

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Feel better: tapping into a new mind-body therapy

5 Oct 2016

Here’s the thing. Sometimes life gets on top of you and it’s easy to feel tired, or stressed or both. Muscles are tight, your skin is like paper, half a bottle of wine every evening is the minimum required to maintain sanity and let’s not even get started on work, kids, new puppies, half-painted living rooms or piles of ironing. Is this sounding familiar?!

When I get to these depths of knackerdom, my usual default is to up my levels of wine.

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Muddy Reviews: Romeo and Juliet, by the Northern Ballet

5 Oct 2016
Northern Ballet dancers in Romeo and Juliet

First up, let me just say that I’m not expert when it comes to ballet. But I do enjoy watching the experts leap around on stage. Last night I cosied up with my nine-year-old mudlet, a tub of Loseley’s best and an a large glass of Sauv to watch Northern Ballet’s Romeo and Juliet at the New Victoria Theatre in Woking. What could be better?

Ok. So maybe a fortnight in the Maldives would be nice.

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Muddy Best Schools Guide #3: Cumnor House School for Girls, Purley

3 Oct 2016

What? Where? Cumnor House School for Girls is an independent prep school on Woodcote Lane, within Purley’s gated Webb Estate. As independent schools go, first impressions are pretty impressive. Woodcote Lane is wide and tree-lined, and there’s a driveway into the school that curves around in front of the main school building. There have been later buildings added, but they blend well with the original building. There’s a country feel to this school, despite its suburban location.

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The Urban Guide to the Countryside -
Surrey Edition