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Five things to do in May

Posted: 30 Apr 2018 04:49 AM PDT

The Bath Magazine rounds up five things to do in Bath this month, including having a party in the city, saying cheese at The British Cheese Awards 2018 and feeling the Bath Fringe.

Party in the city

The highly anticipated return of The Bath Festival is finally here. The 17-day multi-arts festival will be in the city from 11 – 27 May. Marking its 70th anniversary, Bath Festivals is celebrating everything to do with music and literature. Don't miss the Party in the City on 18 May – the biggest night of free music and theatre in Bath is back with an almighty, night-long jam. Robert Plant and the Sensational Space Shifters and Paloma Faith will be taking to the stage at the big finale weekend at The Rec on 26-27 May. Read our interview with Robert Plant here

Get a new perspective

The new exhibition at The Edge at The University of Bath is now open. Collected Shadows: The Archive of Modern Conflict focuses on the history of the photographic medium dating from the mid-1850s to the present day. Open until 16 June, this exhibition of 200 photographs is drawn from the extensive collection of The Archives of Modern Conflict. The AMC was first established 25 years ago as a repository for vernacular photography and ephemera relating to the First and Second World Wars. The exhibition represents a great variety of techniques, from early albumen and hand-tinted silver gelatin prints to the distinctive blue of the cyanotype. Free admission. Visit: edgearts.org Atomic Trial on Mururoa atoll, Tahiti, 1970

Feel good

This month we're all about feeling great. From enjoying express beauty treatments around the city (see page 90) to the Movement Medicine workshop with Bex Bridgford at The Gainsborough Bath Spa Hotel (10 May, 11.30am, £35), May is all about you and your wellbeing. Check out our health and beauty products on page 96 to find those pieces that'll get you feeling and looking fabulous.

Say Cheese

Calling all cheese lovers – The British Cheese Awards 2018 is coming to the south west. Celebrating its 25th birthday and honouring the British cheese industry, more than 1,000 cheeses are expected to be entered. If you camembert to miss it, head to the Royal Bath and West Showground, Shepton Mallet on 30 May. It's going to be legen-dairy! Visit: bathandwest.com

Feel the fringe

Bath Fringe, the city's homegrown arts festival, from 25 May to 10 June, brings theatre, comedy, music, talks, kids' shows, poetry, film and participation. Here's a flavour of what's in store… On 25 May The Last Poets from Harlem NY visit the city's own shrine to Afro-consciousness, Haile Selassie's Fairfield House. Club Cairo, Bath's celebration of Middle-Eastern culture, present their latest multi-arts experience at Kingswood Theatre on 2 June. Multimedia performers Mechanimal transport you to the Somerset Levels with migrating birds on 5–6 June. Bath's leading interactive theatre exponents Kilter Theatre will take you inside your own skin as they explore body image at The Cubicle from 31 May – 3 June. All this along with characters from ancient Greece to future dystopias; music from Spain, Nigeria, Brazil and darkest Britain; and visual artists from all round the country. Pick up a programme from around the city and see the programme online: bathfringe.co.uk

Featured image: Pink Hotel performing at the Party in the City 2017

The post Five things to do in May appeared first on The Bath Magazine.

Lizzy Yarnold visits The Paragon

Posted: 30 Apr 2018 03:08 AM PDT

Paragon pupils and staff have fallen a little bit in love with Lizzy Yarnold. She, accompanied by fellow Skeleton Olympian, Jerry Rice, visited the school to share her story and inspire the children.

For a woman that hurls herself down slopes at 90mph, Lizzy came across as down-to-earth, very likeable, and enthusiastic about sport, encouraging children and life in general. The double Winter Olympic champion shared her love of all school sports, but particularly netball, football, javelin, shot put and heptathlon as well as her secret ambition to be an Olympian. It was interesting to hear about her trial at the Girls for Gold programme and selection for skeleton sport, something she didn’t know much about before. The children loved handling Lizzy’s two gold medals, earned at the Sochi and Pyeongchang in South Korea.

Her determination and natural competitiveness to do well was evident. She, like everyone, feels nervous, feels scared, recognises the dangers in what she does, but she continues on and doesn’t give up. A powerful message for the young people in her audience.

Visit: paragonschool.co.uk

The post Lizzy Yarnold visits The Paragon appeared first on The Bath Magazine.

Interview: Lizzy Yarnold

Posted: 30 Apr 2018 02:51 AM PDT

Double Winter Olympic gold medallist Lizzy Yarnold talks to us about life after Pyeongchang, the art of sliding on ice and inspiring the next generation

How does it feel to have retained your Winter Olympics title?

It's been so fantastic – I honestly am so overwhelmed that the race in Pyeongchang went so much better than I expected, even through my chest infection and other issues. Life has been busy since getting back, seeing everyone and showing them the bling.

How long have you been coming to Bath?

I first visited the University of Bath when I was going through the Talent ID process in 2008, but didn't move to Bath to train full time until early 2012. I love the city, and being able to train alongside other Great Britain athletes, whether they're rugby players or swimmers, is a huge motivation.

Can you explain your training regime?

Summer and winter life and training plans are quite opposite. In the summer I'm based in Bath, usually training three times a day, six days a week. I lift frequently in the gym to get strong, then use the sprint track and push track to convert the power to useful speed for the push-start element of skeleton. I also do loads of yoga and core conditioning, and I attempt basic gymnastics too. During the winter it's all about optimising time on the track, and using the two runs a day the best I can. I'll usually go to the gym or do some training every day too. Sliding on the skeleton track is physically and mentally exhausting, and afternoon naps are essential.

The University of Bath has the only push-start track in the UK. How significant is this to your training?

Using the push track is a great tool for checking whether what I'm doing in the gym is working for me in the right way. We have small group sessions and big group sessions – it's great to have the clocks on and be a bit competitive sometimes.

The nearest refrigerated ice track is in Konigssee, Germany. How often are you able to train on an ice track?

We spend around a week at each ice track around the world. The routine is: arrive, unpack, official training for three days (six runs), compete, pack up and fly to the next place. Each week is full on! I love skeleton but I think I would struggle doing it every day, I appreciate the summer in the UK and having time to focus on my physical capability in the gym.

How much time do you spend in Bath?

I spend a lot of time in town, and I love the city. My lunch spot is always Yen Sushi. I used to love the old Jika Jika café at the top of Milsom Street. I tend to go to Society Café in Kingsmead Square – they have some great magazines.

You are a former heptathlete – why did you start with this, and how did you make the transition to skeleton?

I loved each and every sport, and started athletics after competing in the Prep Schools Nationals for high jump and shot put. I enjoy learning the whys of sport, so the physics of how to throw a javelin kept me motivated for years. I loved pole vault as well as the heptathlon, but javelin and shot putt were my best events. I did the Girls for Gold talent search in 2008 after my first year at uni – I knew I wanted to be an athlete so I was up for the challenge of a new sport.

When was your first experience of skeleton, and did you know straight away that it was for you?

I first went on a track in 2008 in Lillehammer.­­­­ It was the most petrifying thing I'd ever done. I didn't want to go down the track again but everyone else in the group did, so I forced myself to go again – I didn't want to be the only one who chickened out!

“I hope that by meeting me children can see that if they work hard … they can achieve their dreams, too”

What attributes make you good at skeleton?

You have to be physically strong all over, and a decent sprint at the start is required too. Mental strength is probably as important as being strong physically.

The speed you reach on a skeleton track is up to 85mph – do you ever feel overwhelmed by the speed now?

I love the big events and big competitions so feel great before I compete. I was diagnosed with vestibular issues last year and this causes dizziness sometimes when I'm sliding. That has been something I've had to overcome as it was making sliding quite stressful, not knowing if it could happen while I was mid-way down a track.

You must spend so much of your life travelling – what pressures does this create and how do you cope?

It is hard sometimes living out of your suitcase. But that is just the nature of the job, and I love what I do and feel very privileged that I receive lottery funding. It is lovely when the season is over and I can go home and just spend some normal nights in with my husband – the mundane is wonderful.

Team GB's use of game-changing skinsuits at the Winter Olympics to reduce drag and improve aerodynamic performance received some criticism. What is your perspective?

I think it made a good media story. Every country saves some of their new developments for the big events – we are no different and our suits for the Olympics were approved by the authorities and followed all the rules.

How close are you to the international competitors who you meet on the circuit?

We see each other all the time and it's a lovely vibe among all the competitors. We appreciate the nomadic lives we all lead, so have an affinity with each other. Once we're on the track, of course, we are fierce rivals.

Britain has had less success in the men's skeleton than in the women's skeleton. Is there the potential for improvement here?

Dom Parsons winning the first male skeleton medal for us at the Olympics was huge – we were all so chuffed for him, he has worked so hard. There are so many talented young male sliders coming up behind Dom that I'm sure his medal is the first of many to come.

When you are not training you spend much of your time visiting schools – why is this important to you?

I tried every sport growing up and didn't excel at any one thing – so I think it's important to get the message across to young people that you don't have to be the best at everything, and trying sport or other activities out and enjoying them is the most important thing. I describe my Olympic medals like Frodo's ring – the reaction from children when they see them is just priceless. And I hope by meeting me they can see that if they work hard over many years they can achieve their dreams, too.

What are your thoughts about taking part in the Winter Olympics in Beijing in 2022?

It feels like a long way off! I'm looking forward to a holiday before getting back in the gym and seeing how my body is faring.

How do you see your future beyond skeleton?

There are so many things I'd love to do – I did a bookkeeping course recently and loved it – maybe I could be an accountant…

Images by Mark Varey

The post Interview: Lizzy Yarnold appeared first on The Bath Magazine.

Dauntsey’s pupils take to the high seas to earn RYA qualification

Posted: 30 Apr 2018 02:04 AM PDT

During the Easter holidays, a group of Dauntsey’s pupils from the Fourth Form and Lower Sixth took part in two five-day cruises to earn their RYA Competent Crew Certificate. The cruises set off from the Hamble and took in the seas around France and the Channel Islands.

Toby Maris, Head of Sailing said: ‘The Competent Crew Certificate is all about getting to know the boat and having hands-on experience of living on board.

“By the end of the course the pupils had learnt to steer, handle sails, keep a lookout, row a dinghy and assist in all the day-to-day duties onboard. There was some great teamwork during the cruises and everyone also had a lot of fun.”

Visit: dauntseys.org

Featured image: Pupils from Dauntsey’s on board Jolie Brise during the Easter holidays

The post Dauntsey’s pupils take to the high seas to earn RYA qualification appeared first on The Bath Magazine.