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NN October 18

From the Editor

Christmas cards have started creeping onto supermarket shelves, Roses and Quality Street tins are beginning to bulge into the shopping aisles and the evenings are drawing in - there's no escape folks, Christmas is most certainly on its way.

In preparation, we have five pairs of tickets to the Festive Gift Fair at Birmingham's NEC in November to give away. If you haven't already visited, make sure you do. There are lots of unusual gifts and Christmas decorations to buy, and it really gets you in the Christmas mood - it's a great day out with friends too.

Before we enter the Christmas spirit with full force, it's Halloween. Make sure you stock up with plenty of treats as the tricks are getting more and more sophisticated...

If you're hosting a Halloween party, we have some great recipes courtesy of Waitrose - eyeball cocktails (not real eyes, of course!) and ghostly bananas, which are my personal favourite - they look great! And will be the talk of any party, I am sure.

This month we attended the official opening of Bell Northampton and I can honestly say I was blown away. I used to shop there many years ago (I really mean many years!) and it has been totally transformed. Catering for ladies who lunch as well as those looking for something different, Bells Northampton has everything. In the current climate and especially considering Northampton Town Centre's offering when it comes to retail, Bell Northampton is a breath of fresh air - it's not just a shop, it's a whole day out! I'd certainly recommend you pop along for the experience.

If you love food, you'll be pleased to hear that Northampton's Winter Food Festival makes a welcome return next month - providing a perfect opportunity to stock up with tasty goodies ready for Christmas and have a pair of tickets up for grabs. Just answer the simply question inside and good luck (I hope you like the cheese names!) - it really is a great event.

According to fashion expert Cindy Hudson, we should be all over animal prints this season and most of the major high street stores are stocking some sort of animal inspired print. She offers her top picks and suggestions on where to hunt them down.

Laura Malpas visits Prebendal Manor in Nassington to find out more about the little known Georgian farmhouse which is actually the oldest continually inhabited home in Northampton. Its even been visited by a King and has links to witchcraft! Don't think I'll visit on Halloween #Scaredycat.

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