Care is not just for Christmas

Round & About

Health & Nutrition

Almost 1.5 million people feel more lonely at Christmas than any other time, do what you can to make this one full of love and joy

Christmas is a time of great joy and celebration but for many, especially the elderly, it can be an unwelcome time bringing sadness and loneliness.

It’s important to stay connected with any older friends or relatives, invite them to family get togethers and events, how about an uplifting carol concert or a trip to the panto? A simple outing to a garden centre for example with a seasonal display may make all the difference. Some may be content to enjoy just staying in the warmth and comfort of their own home so always make sure your attentions are welcome, they may not want to join in the excesses of the season.

If there isn’t time to pop round in person, pick up the phone, a tech savvy elderly person may benefit from a video call, just seeing a friendly face can make all the difference. Perhaps set up a rota among yourselves to vary the calls and keep in touch.

Help with the shopping, many grandparents will love the opportunity to spoil their young relations at this time of year, they may need help to seek out suitable gifts. Offer to go shopping with them, many will enjoy having some company on their visit to the supermarket, involve them in your shopping visit, if they’re coming to you for the festive season ask them what they would like to eat too.

Consider their mobility too, icy surfaces and wet conditions can make getting out and about tricky and make elderly people more susceptible to falls. Check their home and access to it is safe to walk on, make sure they have any extra walking aids if necessary and if you’re not able to get them out and about, try a ‘dial-a-ride’ service or other community transport scheme.

You may need some extra support at this hectic time of year. There are plenty of companies and agencies who can provide a helping hand. Perhaps you just need someone to pay your relative a visit, as little or as often can be arranged? A live-in carer will help in the home, offering round-the-clock care for them and peace of mind for you. Respite care offers short-term support. Christmas has many demands on time and if you’re going away this may be an option.

Help make this Christmas a little more joyful for an older person.

Don’t be afraid to cry

Round & About

Health & Nutrition

Columnist Robbie James says: ” I have an inability to cry but that doesn’t stop me from feeling sad”

I cannot cry to save my life. Up until a few weeks ago, I hadn’t cried for a good few years. Then one evening after a couple of wines I heard Sunshine on Leith by The Proclaimers (one of the greatest love songs of all time) and I sobbed for the next 20 minutes. I couldn’t believe it. I wasn’t crying for any particular reason, my body just fancied a change, and I’m relieved because I missed the feeling you get after you cry – it’s so cathartic and calming. Almost like it’s a natural thing to do, who knew!?

We love to be sorry for crying don’t we. How often do we hear ‘’I’m so sorry I don’t know why I’m crying at such a silly little thing’’. It actually bothers me that I don’t cry more. Sometimes my family or pals think I don’t care as much as them about things. Of course I do, I absolutely do, I just cannot squeeze tears out of my eyes no matter how many times my beloved Scotland get knocked out of the Rugby World Cup.

I substitute crying for running until I can’t run anymore. If I’m feeling good that day, I’ll listen to music that encourages those feelings. But if I’m feeling a bit sad, I’ll absolutely run to Adele. I go and see a therapist every month regardless of how I’m feeling, but I’m there for the same reason every time I go. To learn about my brain (and by the way, it’s a task we’ll never actually fully complete, that’s important to remember).

It’s great to see so many people advocating looking after our brains on Instagram, and the intention is a good one. But we love to encourage each other to try and feel better instantly. It’s a natural instinct to avoid feeling sad, but to my completely untrained brain it doesn’t feel particularly healthy. 

We see people saying ‘’I haven’t been feeling great recently but I’m through it by doing this and that, and if you do these things you will be too. Come on. Do them. Hurry up. Feel better, do it now. SADNESS IS BAD’’. Surely this invasion tactic ultimately teaches us nothing. There will always be periods of sadness or low mood, and if we don’t bother to try and understand them when it’s happening, we’ll be in no better place to cope with it when it comes back around again. 

At the same time, when things are going well and we’re feeling good – we never really stop and think – ‘’why is it that things are good? What’s making me feel this way about stuff?’’. If we understand and notice the triggers then maybe that might come in handy one day when we’re feeling awful about everything. To use the classic ‘’treat your mental health like your physical health’’ analogy – most of us hygienic lot don’t only go to the dentist when we’ve lost a molar, we go every six months to check all is ok – if it is, great, at least we’ve checked up.

So in short, let’s embrace every feeling, we don’t have to run away from sadness. If you take time to understand rather than fight your brain, you’ll probably be in a better place in the long run. Oh, and if you cry at anything and everything, keep doing it. I’m jealous.

Head for Headway Surrey open day

Round & About

Health & Nutrition

Every 90 seconds someone is admitted to a UK hospital with a head injury. Here is a special chance to come and see inside Headway Surrey, you never know when you might need our services.

Headway Surrey covers the whole of the county and offer face to face services, and online sessions.

Come and have a look around, we will have a display of some of our work and activities, some art and some of the tools that we use to help people to rebuild their cognition and executive skills, meet the Hospital Link Workers who visit surrounding hospitals to support those admitted with a brain injury and their families, meet the Joint CEOs, Rehab Coordinators and Assistants and Trustees, find out just what we do at Headway Surrey and if we can help you, or alternatively if you can help us.

We are holding the Open Day for anyone who might have an interest in our local Surrey wide charity, and an interest in brain injury, whether a brain injured person, a family member, medical or care professional, potential volunteer, potential Trustee or Chair, or potential local company looking for a worthwhile local charity to support.

Headway Surrey Joint CEO, Sonja Freebody, says: “We are delighted to open our doors for people to just pop in. We want to help as many as people as possible, so please come and have a look around. You might be a professional who wants to know more, you may be a person with a brain injury, or perhaps you are looking after someone. You might be looking for a local volunteering opportunity. Come and find out.”

The Open Day is on Friday 13th October from 10am-4pm at the Headway Centre, Headway House, 21 North Road, Guildford, GU2 9PU.

No booking required, just turn up. Free entry. We have five spaces directly outside the office and there is free on road parking along North Road, Stoughton Road and Cardwell’s Keep. Refreshments will be available (tea, coffee, cake and biscuits). Donations welcome.

There will be raffle tickets on sale to raise much needed funds and Christmas cards and a small selection of gifts (early Christmas shopping). We have some great prizes and vouchers coming in. If you can’t attend but would like to purchase some raffle tickets, please go to Open Day | Headway Surrey.

What causes a brain injury?

Well, it can be from stroke, road traffic incident, sports accident, trip, fall, assault, combat, domestic violence, hypoxia (lack of oxygen), aneurysm (bleed on the brain), brain tumour, encephalitis, meningitis, carbon monoxide poisoning and many other things.

Headway Surrey has a wide range of services that can be accessed at different times of people’s recovery journey. Such as: 1:1 support, group sessions, counselling sessions, helpline, drop-in sessions, coffee mornings, social sessions, art, creative writing, boccia, young people’s group, walking and talking group with speech and language therapist students, online professional lunch and learn sessions, 6-week online courses for those with a brain injury and a separate one for family members, we can help survivors obtain a Brain Injury ID card.

If you can’t make the date, then please do contact us at anytime and arrange an appointment to look around. More details at Home | Headway Surrey and enquiries can be made to [email protected] 01483 454433

Frimley goes pink for organ donation

Karen Neville

Health & Nutrition

Organ Donation Week runs from September 18th to 24th and Frimley Park and Wexham Park hospitals will be lit up pink, the colour of the donation card

This year (April 2022/ March 2023) 39 organs were donated at Frimley and Wexham Park Hospitals, irreversibly changing 39 lives. 

This is a fantastic result for Frimley Health, however, more than 50 per cent of the population still have not registered their decision about donating an organ. To put this into context, although there were 3,029 transplants last year nationally, there are still over 7,000 people on the transplant list. Of those who are waiting, 782 are in the South-East region, of which Frimley Health is a part, so there is still a long way to go.  

With Organ Donation Week just around the corner, 18th-24th September, it’s vital we raise awareness of this important issue in the hope that more people will register their decision at  NHS Organ Donation and make their wishes known to their loved ones so that even more people can be saved. 

To highlight this issue and help start conversations, we’ll be going pink! 

Throughout Organ Donation Week, we will be lighting up our acute hospitals – Frimley Park and Wexham Park in pink – the colour of the Organ Donation card. 

Talking organ donation with Frimley Health specialist nurse

To explain the process of organ donation, we spoke to Brooke Timms, specialist nurse organ donation, who has been based at Frimley Park Hospital for the past 18 months.  

Brooke, who has been a nurse for the last seven years has worked in various intensive care units ever since she graduated from the University of Greenwich. Her passion is helping those who are most in need on their road to recovery. 

Why organ donation?

I have always worked in intensive care where organ donation is a part of all end-of- life care considerations. Working in intensive care during the Covid-19 pandemic was incredibly challenging and unfortunately many patients did not survive their admission. After the pandemic I wanted a change of direction. I have always been passionate about advocating for patients and their end of life wishes, and so becoming a specialist nurse in organ donation seemed the right path for me. 

Working as part of the organ donation team is a privilege. It’s also rewarding as more than 50,000 lives have been saved through organ donation and transplantation in the UK. 

Can you explain the process of organ donation?

The journey of organ donation involves many people and several different organisations – though the patient and their family and friends are always front and centre. 

When a patient is referred to the service as part of their end-of-life care planning, usually by the intensive care unit, our first responsibility is to access the organ donor register (ODR) to ascertain whether the patient has registered an organ donation decision in their lifetime. This is essential as we need to be aware of their wishes prior to continuing our assessment. We then work to assess the patient’s organ donor potential. If they are in a position to be able to help others through organ donation, we will have a discussion with the patient’s designated next of kin, family and friends to ascertain their end of life wishes.  

As a specialist nurse my role is to support those involved and to ensure the process is as safe as possible for everyone. We collect important clinical information and once this is complete, begin to look for potential organ recipients.  

Once suitable recipients are found, specialist transplant retrieval teams come to the hospital to perform the organ donation operation. Once organs are retrieved, they are transported to the recipient hospitals to be transplanted – to give the precious gift of life. Wherever possible, we contact families to let them know how their loved one’s organs have been used to save lives, something we know gives them great comfort at a difficult time. 

What myths would you like to debunk?

When speaking with families they often feel their loved ones would be unable to donate their organs due to certain medical conditions or age. This is untrue. While there are some conditions that mean organ donation cannot happen, in the majority of cases tissue donation, such as corneal (eye) donation can still go ahead – giving someone the life changing gift of sight.  

What would you like to highlight about organ donation?

There is a profound disparity between ethnic groups, organ donation and transplantation. As of 2021/22, people of Asian heritage accounted for 3% of deceased organ donors but made up 18% of those on the transplant waiting list. Similarly, those of black heritage represented 2% of deceased organ donors but made up 10% of the transplant waiting list.  

Organs are more likely to be matched to someone of the same ethnic background and therefore it’s vital that we’re reaching out to all communities. In 2022/23 the consent rate for those of black and Asian heritage was at 40% compared to the consent rate for white donors which was 71%.   

Changes since Max & Kiera’s law?

In 2019 the Government initiated the opt-out law change, meaning that everyone in England was considered to have no objections to becoming an organ donor if they had not registered an organ donation decision. Also known as Max & Kiera’s Law after Kiera who courageously donated her heart to save a young boy named Max.  

Since the law change, we’ve found that people are talking more about organ donation and their end of life wishes which is great, but we need them to continue to do so. Although many are aware of the law change, it is still paramount that people register an organ donation decision. This is simple and easy to do, you can register online at:, by calling 0300 123 23 23, picking up a leaflet or by registering on your driving license or at your GP.  

Hardest and most rewarding parts of the job?

The hardest part of this role is that I see a lot of people experiencing the worst times of their lives, losing their loved ones, however it is a privilege to be able to support them. The most rewarding aspect of this job is being an advocate for the patient/donor and their families to ensure that their precious end-of-life wishes are met. 

Youth in Mind Berkshire conference

Round & About

Health & Nutrition

A Mental Health & Wellbeing Conference for anyone who works with children and young people in Berkshire West and beyond

Hosted by Mind in Berkshire, this mental health and wellbeing conference is for anyone who works with children and young people in statutory bodies, the education sector, voluntary sector organisations, and individuals in Berkshire West and beyond.

Young people play a key role planning and delivering the conference, identifying subjects they would like covered, and questioning and discussing with speakers the mental health challenges they face, and the support they feel young people need.

Speakers at this year’s conference include Dr Luke Beardon, autism expert and author of multiple books about autism, and Dr Dimitri Gavriloff who specialises in behavioural sleep medicine.

Hot off the press, the findings of the Oxwell Student Survey, completed by 43,000 young people in schools across the country, will be shared by Professor Mina Fazel. She will be joined by young people to discuss some of the issues raised by the survey, and by Sarah Emery, CEO of Berkshire Youth, who will share conclusions drawn from their 2023 survey of young people across the country.

Workshops will be delivered by a variety of organisations including Citizens Advice, Samaritans, Soulscape, No 5, Reading FC Community Trust, Safe and Sport in Mind, Brighter Futures for Children and NHS Berkshire Healthcare Children, Young People and Families Service Jess Willsher, CEO of Oxfordshire Mind said: “Post pandemic and in the midst of a cost-of-living crisis, an increasing number of children and young people are having to cope with mental health challenges.* At a time when it’s more important than ever to understand mental health and wellbeing support from a young person’s perspective, we’re delighted to be hosting our second Youth in Mind Berkshire conference. It’s an opportunity for all of us who work with children and young people to come together, learn from experts and each other, and find ways of working creatively together to provide the best support we can.”

Alongside speakers, presentations and workshops there are exhibition stands and a wellbeing area.

Tickets are now on sale for the second Youth in Mind Berkshire conference which takes place on Thursday 27th June at the Palmer Building, University of Reading.

North West Surrey Alliance community day

Round & About

Health & Nutrition

Jack Wagstaff, Place Leader and Chief Officer for North West Surrey Health and Care Alliance shares how they are working together for better health, care and wellbeing for the benefit of the community

North West Surrey Health and Care Alliance recently held our first large-scale Community Day at the RHS Garden Wisley. The incredible setting intentionally set the tone for the type of environments we need around us to nurture our health and wellbeing.

More than 200 people living, working, running businesses, supporting vulnerable people and raising families in our communities joined us.

This was an opportunity to showcase everything from local recruitment opportunities to the progress we’re making joining up the delivery of health, care and wider wellbeing services. That included hearing about people like, Avis who has regained her confidence after a series of falls following support from our Urgent Community Response Team who helped her to remain independent in her own home. Watch Avis tell her story.

We also shared our work with borough councils, without whom it wouldn’t be possible to offer initiatives like our Step Down Service. This is supported accommodation for people who are medically fit but need additional help on discharge from hospital. For local residents Wendy and Darren this made all the difference. Hear more about Helen’s work.

As well sharing our progress, it was a chance for local people to tell us what it feels like to be on the receiving end of our work. The energy and positive feedback on the day was hugely motivating but what really struck me was just how active our residents want to be in improving their own health and wellbeing. Empowering people to take agency in this is the foundation of our work to develop neighbourhood teams. This follows recommendations from The Fuller Stocktake and our Critical 5 priorities, and means introducing multi-disciplinary teams to serve the needs of a defined footprint – with easy access to preventative support and tailored care when it’s needed.

Listening to the experiences of people from our communities and understanding their ideas for what a healthy and happy neighbourhood looks like opened up a different kind of dialogue about how we can influence the wider determinants of health. Considering transport and access, digital inequality, making it easier to navigate different services and liberating our community assets so they can take forward their own wellbeing initiatives, is all part of growing the neighbourhoods our residents want.

This is just the beginning of our work involve people in our communities, the voluntary and charity sector to build cohesive services and cultivate environments where our residents can thrive. Take a look at the highlights from the day in this short film. And if you’re interested in how we’ll be using the outputs of our discussions – keep an eye on our website or drop us a line.

C’est La Vegan!

Round & About

Health & Nutrition

Eat More Vegan by Annie Rigg, published by Pavilion Books

Potato & lentil cakes with coleslaw

Prep time: 30 minutes | Cooking: 60 minutes | Serves: Four


• 500g floury potatoes (about four, medium sized)
• 100g green lentils, rinsed
• 1 onion, sliced
• 1 leek, trimmed & sliced
• 1 tbsp olive oil
• 1 garlic clove, crushed
• 1 tsp caraway seeds
• 1 tsp paprika
• 1 small bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped
• 3 tbsp plain flour
• 4 tbsp plant-based milk
• 100g panko breadcrumbs
• 4 tbsp sunflower oil
• Salt and freshly ground
• Black pepper


• 1 large carrot, coarsely grated
• ¼ white or red cabbage, finely shredded
• 3 spring onions, sliced
• 1 green chilli, finely chopped
• 3 tbsp roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
• 2 tbsp chopped coriander
• 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds, toasted
• 2 tsp poppy seeds
• 50g pecan nuts, toasted and roughly chopped
• 2 tbsp vegan mayonnaise, crème fraîche or yogurt
• Juice of half a lemon

Both the potato cakes and coleslaw can be prepared in advance, chilled and then the cakes coated and fried just before serving. Serve with chilli sauce and salad leaves or baby leaf spinach.

Cook the unpeeled potatoes in boiling salted water until just tender when tested with a knife. Drain and leave to cool slightly. In another pan, cook the lentils for about 20 minutes until tender, drain and leave to cool.

Meanwhile, tip the onion and leek into a frying pan with the olive oil and cook over a medium heat, stirring frequently, for about 10 minutes until tender and starting to brown. Add the garlic, caraway seeds and paprika and cook for another minute. Tip into a large bowl with the lentils and parsley. Coarsely grate the potatoes into the bowl, season well and, using clean hands, mix. Shape into eight patties, cover and chill for 20 minutes. They can be prepared in advance up to this point.

Combine carrot, cabbage, spring onions and chilli in a bowl and add the herbs, seeds and nuts. Half an hour before serving, add the mayo and lemon juice, season and mix.

When you are ready to cook, tip the flour onto a plate, pour the milk into a shallow bowl and spread the breadcrumbs on a tray. Dip the cakes first in flour, then milk and finally breadcrumbs. Heat the sunflower oil in a frying pan over a medium heat and fry the cakes, in batches, until crisp and golden brown on both sides and hot all the way through. Remove and keep warm while you cook the remaining potato cakes. Serve with the coleslaw and a drizzle of red or green sriracha sauce, if liked.

Mushroom broth with buckwheat soba

Prep: 5 minutes | Cooking: 60 minutes | Serves: Four



• 150g oyster mushrooms, roughly torn in half
• 130g shiitake mushrooms, roughly torn in half
• 2 tsp sunflower oil
• 10g dried shiitake mushrooms
• 2 spring onions, trimmed and halved
• 1 garlic clove, sliced
• 3cm piece fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
• 2 star anise
• ½ tsp coriander seeds


• 200g buckwheat soba noodles
• 6 shiitake mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
• 1 tbsp soy sauce or tamari, to taste
• 1 tsp mirin or rice vinegar, to taste
• 3 baby pak choi, halved or quartered
• Salt and freshly ground black pepper

To serve

• 2 spring onions, trimmed and finely shredded
• Shichimi togarashi or toasted sesame seeds

This light broth has plenty of satisfying umami notes. Mushrooms are roasted then simmered with aromatics to create a rich stock. Prepare this broth ahead to allow for the flavours to shine through.


Preheat the oven to 160°C fan/180°C/gas mark 4.

First make the broth. Toss the torn oyster and shiitake mushrooms in the sunflower oil and season. Tip on to a large baking tray in a single layer and roast for about 30 minutes, turning halfway through until browned and starting to crisp at the edges.

Scoop the mushrooms into a large saucepan and add the rest of the broth ingredients. Add 750ml water and bring slowly to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook over a low heat for about 30 minutes to extract all the flavour from the mushrooms and aromatics. Remove from the heat and leave to cool to room temperature or chill until ready to serve.

Cook the buckwheat noodles according to the packet instructions. Drain and divide between four bowls. While the noodles are cooking, strain the cooled broth through a sieve into a clean pan, pressing down on the mushrooms to extract as much flavour as possible. Bring the stock to a simmer, add the sliced shiitake mushrooms and cook for two or three minutes until tender. Taste the broth and add soy sauce and mirin to taste. Add the pak choi to the broth, and cook for a further minute until tender.

Ladle the broth over the buckwheat noodles, dividing the mushrooms and pak choi evenly between the bowls, and scatter with spring onions and shichimi togarashi or sesame seeds to serve.

Care Supplement: February 2023

Round & About

Health & Nutrition

Make the right choices to help you or your loved one make the most of their later life

Click to view the interactive care map
Check out more care related articles

Man’s best friends

“Pets just make us feel happier” – the simple reason why many elderly people benefit from the companionship of an animal

We are a nation of pet lovers and for many this doesn’t change just because you have to enter a care home – man’s best friend can become even more important at this time of life.

Ill health, loneliness, depression and anxiety-related issues can all make later life harder but pets can help ease the elderly through and studies have shown that interacting with a dog, cat, rabbit, ducklings and even fish can kindle memories about past experiences and provide an opportunity to talk.

One charity which knows a thing or two about the benefits our furry and feathered friends can bring is Oxfordshire-based Pets As Therapy who say a PAT pet can improve a person’s mental health and overall wellbeing, adding that there’s often an increased connection with carers and family too, and those living with dementia can feel energised and elated, “It comes down to a very simple truth: pets just make us feel happier”.

The charity was founded in 1983 by dog owner and volunteer Lesley Scott-Ordish and as it enters its 40th year, its vision remains unchanged to ensure everyone has access to the companionship of a pet regardless of their circumstances. In addition to its work in care homes, Pets As Therapy also extends the services to schools, hospitals and prisons.

More than 4,000 volunteers go out and about with their animal friends extending the paw or claw of friendship to day care centres, residential homes and hospices as well as the other facilities. Pets As Therapy volunteers are pet owners who give up their time to help, if you would like to help find out more and apply at

One such home company which has benefited from the love and attention of a PAT dog is Brendoncare which has homes in and around Alton and Winchester in Hampshire and at Froxfield near Marlborough.

Staff and residents there have seen first hand the positive effects of the joy and companionship that animals can bring.

Rebecca Spicer, Volunteer and Activity Manager at Brendoncare, said: “Wellbeing is so much more than the word games and outings. Bringing animals to show our residents adds an element of home: a visiting PAT dog, social farm experience or even a pet animal for the home adds to this.

“Animals bring love and comfort to our residents, and for them the nurturing feeling of caring or parenting something is familiar. In practice all residents have a natural instinct to stroke a dog, hold a chick or pet a horse. It’s those integrated moments that are engrained in our memories that give us that warm fuzzy ‘good’ feeling in our tummy.”

Animals offer unconditional love and companionship. Sometimes, they provide a level of companionship that people can’t and many find interacting with pets such as simply stroking their fur to watching their antics can have a very calming and reassuring benefit.

Animal visits to care homes can bring back fond memories for residents, with many remembering previous pets or happy times with friends and family when they come face to face with visiting animals.

Brendoncare Alton recall a recent visit by a range of farm animals which for one resident was a special afternoon as he reminisced about the pig farm he used to run and remembered precious memories for him and his family – whilst stroking a pig!

Animals give residents a break in routine and something they can look forward to. But that’s not all – research suggests that animals and their calming nature and affection can offer health benefits such as lowering people’s blood pressure and heart rate, increasing levels of oxytocin (the stress-reducing hormone) and decreasing the production of the stress hormone cortisol.

Brendoncare say that while they love seeing their residents’ excitement when they get to hold a duckling or stroke a donkey, their lovely smiles aren’t the only benefit of petting these animals. Stroking an animal’s fur/feathers, hearing their unique sounds, holding them in their lap, feeding them and grooming them are all interactions which provide great sensory stimulation for residents and are particularly beneficial for people with dementia.

Brendoncare Park Road in Winchester helped welcome some baby ducklings into the world and alongside the familiar caring and nurturing aspects that bring back familiar feelings, cuddling and petting the ducks also provided sensory stimulation.

Find out more at

In addition to the work of charities such as Pets As Therapy in care homes, many residential homes welcome residents to bring their much-loved pets with them with they move in recognising the benefits to older people – improving mental wellbeing, decreased dementia rates, a sense of purpose and fun.

View the interactive care map

More care related articles

Hear clearly – Try ear microsuction as a way to help hearing loss

A day in the life… – Nurse turned care home manager Susie Green shares her memories of life as a care home manager in A Most Precious Gift

Planning for the future – Get your financial affairs in order with a Will or Lasting Power of Attorney

M&S Food launch new breakfast range

Round & About

Health & Nutrition

M&S have just launched their biggest ever breakfast range from its own label for the first time, offering a range of tasty new cereals, granolas, porridge, breakfast toppers and breakfast pots to brighten your morning

Start the day right with an Eat Well breakfast from M&S Food – our clever product developers have created lots of new tasty cereals and breakfast toppers – complete with the health benefits you’d expect from Eat Well – for all the family.

Some have even been given the professional footballer seal of approval thanks to Eat Well’s partnership with the home nation football associations. Midfielders Mason Mount and Jordan Henderson and defender Eric Dier have all picked their choice for breakfast.

Mason Mount’s choice
Jordan Henderson’s choice
Eric Dier’s choice

Not only do we have some brand new cereal-ously tasty Eat Well options but we also have porridge, granolas and a new breakfast pot.

Our breakfast boffins have also added more Made Without options, alongside Vegetarian and Vegan options to cater for special dietary requirements – so no matter who you are we have a breakfast FOR YOU.

Sarah Jane Large, Product Developer, M&S Food, said: “At M&S we are constantly listening to our customers on what food and new products they would like to see across our Foodhalls. We know that most people have the same breakfast every day and think that’s a travesty! So, we wanted to inspire them to try something new this New Year and while we were at it completely overhauled our entire range to make it healthier and EVEN tastier.

“In particular our new gut health products taps into 48%* of Brits who are interested in breakfast items that support digestion and gut health – so we have introduced some great options for them.  Our new Eat Well Plant Kitchen High Protein Vegan Choco Crunch and Made Without Wheat Triple Chocolate Crunch also mirrors the trend that although people are looking to be healthier, they just can’t beat that sweet chocolate fix – just mix them with your favourite milk or alternative for a breakfast that feels like you should only have on special occasions!”

It’s not just chocolate and gut health that are trending at breakfast. Taking inspiration from our American friends across the pond, dessert flavours in the morning, yes in the MORNING, are also on the rise. And as the home of the food hybrid we HAD to get involved – so have introduced Eat Well Pecan Pie Flavour Porridge and Made Without Wheat Maple Syrup Flavour Porridge to our breakfast line up. And hey, who says you can only have it at breakfast anyway!

Healthy start to 2023 at Squire’s

Karen Neville

Health & Nutrition

Wholesome food and a warm welcome await at Squire’s this January and there’s a comforting 15% off the bill

Healthy eating habits are often front of mind when looking to start the new year, with vegan and vegetarian preferences a considered choice, as well as wholesome, thoughtful eating options.

Squire’s Garden Centres has a great range of delicious, flavoursome food and healthy meal choices available to start the new year off – and all with a welcoming 15% discount off total food and drink* bills (promotion does not apply to alcoholic drinks) – from 1st-31st January* across all centres.

A visit to a Squire’s Café Bar makes the perfect spot this January to keep warm, meet up with friends, and enjoy saving money too.

Now is the time to try different flavours in the comfort of Squire’s Café Bars with a great range of dishes including Light Bite options of Mushroom & Sage Soup and Parsnip or Apple & Thyme Soup – served with sliced sourdough, Jacket Potato with Cheesy Beans as well as the delicious Smashed Avocado & Red Onion Sandwich.

More filling options available are the plant-based ‘Moving Mountain’ Burger in a vegan brioche bun with chargrilled tomato chutney, the delicious Butternut Squash, Cranberry & Red Onion Tagine – roasted butternut squash and red onion wedges in a sweetly spiced tagine style sauce served with basmati rice and garlic flatbread and Cauliflower & Spinach Balti Pie. Alternatively, and for a satisfying taste of tradition, try Squire’s Hand-Battered Fish & Chips – MSC certified cod with petit pois and fresh tartare sauce. Menus vary by centre.