Tag Archives: Lincoln

Princess Anne in Lincoln

It’s a big year for Lincoln as the city celebrates 800 years of the Magna Carta. It’s important for the area as the Cathedral has one of four remaining copies of the historical document. Until recently it was just displayed in part of the castle but a decision was made to invest in these beautiful parts of Lincoln and so started 10 years of work.

There’s now a dedicated vault in the castle grounds for the Magna Carta which opened earlier this year. Then to mark the occaision it was officially opened a few months later by Princess Anne.


As well as being a chance to show the best of Lincolnshire to royalty it was also a chance for lots of people to come together and celebrate the area.

We covered the event throughout the day on our news bulletins on Lincs FM. We started off by having some copy in our bulletins but once I was in the castle grounds recorded a voicer on my smartphone which I sent back to the office. This was then used in the bulletins to help give listeners an idea of how the event was building up.

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I only had about an hour to interview lots of people before the Princess arrived in the grounds and security protocols kicked in. I used this time to vox plenty of people who were at the event to find out the local reaction.

I then spoke to lots of people who had been involved in the project as well as local dignatries. All of these were sent back so the team had lots of different interviews to use and reflect how the event was moving on. I was also making sure to record lots of sounds, clapping and speeches so I had lots of bits of audio to play with to make a package.

Then I had a chance to just enjoy the event and the excitement of Princess Anne arriving. At this point I made sure to take plenty of photos and also tweet the news on the station’s Twitter account.

Then as they were enjoying their tour of the castle I went back to the office to assemble my package. I looked up what the team had already used of my audio. I then built a simple story that I wanted to tell in my package, only using the best bits of my interviews and recordings.

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It was really interesting to cover this event, not only was it an important day for Lincoln it was also a chance to be creative. More importantly it was good to work with the rest of the team, providing them with good quality interviews to help them out with news bulletins whilst out reporting. It was also great to think of the story beyond just what was going out on the station and remember the importance of social media too.

John Torode speaks to Siren FM

Celebrity chef and Masterchef judge John Torode travels down under to showcase the best food available in his home country in the new series John Torode’s Australia.

John Torode | Photo: Lichfield District Council via Flickr

The show gives John Torode a chance to revisit the places where he learnt to cook as well as explore the types of food that different cultures have brought to the country. He does think it is funny that Britain has a stereotype that Australians just cook everything on the barbecue. Although there is more to Australian cooking John Torode does defend cooking things on the barbecue saying that it is great for everyday dishes as well as fine steak.

John Torode gave some encouraging words to people who want to learn how to cook new and different dishes — saying they should focus on learning the culture surrounding a type of cuisine. However, he thinks people aren’t put off from trying new foods saying: “Are we a bit scared? Maybe. But a lot of people know what they like and I think that’s not a bad thing at all.”

But when it comes to himself, John Torode says: “If I went through any day and I didn’t learn anything about cooking I think it would be a sad day.”

John Torode’s Australia starts on Good Food on Monday 3rd March at 8pm.

You can listen to the full interview with John Torode where he talks to me and Sam Pidoux about why he doesn’t like cooking cheap food and why he enjoyed not having the responsibilities of Masterchef when filming his latest television show.

Celebrations at Siren 107.3FM

Siren FM recently celebrated winning the title of East Midlands Station of the Year. The Radio Academy Award was part of their Nations and Regions awards which celebrates local programming.

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It’s fantastic for Siren to win this award and have the hard work of all the volunteers appreciated. We found out about the win at the station back in December but it was great to have an evening dedicated to receiving the award.

The accolade was awarded to Lincoln’s first community radio station because:

“Siren FM is a really ambitious and creatively interesting station. They’re doing something different but in their own way and are firmly rooted in their community. A mix of local experiences and stories with global themes – relating the world to Lincolnshire and vice versa.

“This entry displayed a great range of voices and topics on air as well as a great mix of youth, heritage, diversity and local history. A student station that demonstrates good engagement with both students and the wider listener. The schedule was eclectic and the station sounded good and fresh.”

Our winning entry included lots of clips from a variety of Siren shows, and I am happy to say that my radio documentary following the Burton Road Chippy was included.

Here’s some photos from the night.

Cooking to save lives recipe book

Excitingly one of my cake recipes has been published in a local recipe book.

Me and Sam Pidoux posing with our recipes | Photo: Sam Pidoux

The Cooking to Save Lives book has been published by the Lincolnshire based first aid charity Lives. Over a couple of months they collected recipes from local restaurants, cafes and people to create this guide to the county’s food.

Back in the summer Steve Hyde from Lives visited Siren FM to talk about what the charity does and to explain their project. Essentially Lives need to fundraise almost a million pounds a year to keep running and Steve thought a recipe book would be a good way to raise some money. He approached Chris Strawson, who works for local printing company DPS Printing, and he had the idea to fill the recipe book with dishes from restaurants and cafes from around the county.

You can listen to that interview on Food for Thought from last summer here.

It was after that meeting that Sam Pidoux, who regularly helps out on Food for Thought, came up with the idea to submit some of our own creations to the book. Sam came up with gluten free chocolate brownies made using beetroot as one of the ingredients so the pressure was on to come up with something good.

Usually when I am baking I will follow recipes but I couldn’t submit someone else’s recipe and pretend it was my own. There was one cake that I had come up with myself for my Dad’s birthday. He loves those chocolate and lime sweets and I wanted to use those flavours in a cake. After some experimenting with how to use lime in cakes, I created a delicious chocolate and lime marble cake. The recipe was different and something special to me so I thought it was a good choice for the book.

In early December Lives and DPS Printing held a party at the Electric Bar in the centre of Lincoln to celebrate the launch of the book. It was my first chance to see the book and I was very impressed. It was great to see people interested in my cake and to see all the other dishes that were in the book.

You can pick up a copy of Cooking to Save Lives from a few local cafes and restaurants including Angel Coffee House, Burton Road Chippy and The Old Stables. Alternatively you can buy the book online as well on the Lives website.

Rachel Allen’s cooking tips and Snap It Taste It Blog It

In this week’s Food for Thought podcast Snap It Taste It Blog It talk about Lincolnshire products and Samantha Pidoux and I chat to celebrity chef Rachel Allen.

People’s food shopping budgets may have got smaller but it’s still important to cook healthy and filling meals. This is what Rachel Allen is tackling in her latest television show Everyday Kitchen by showcasing simple and inexpensive meals to make. Earlier this week Samantha Pidoux and I chatted to the celebrity chef about her new Good Food programme and asked Rachel Allen how she felt about her title — “the Queen of Irish cooking”.

Tuesday 1st October was Lincolnshire Day and I invited Alex and Ben from Snap It Taste It Blog It to review the county’s finest foods. The long-distance couple, who review food in both New York and Boston, Lincolnshire, have been on the show before but this time they are both in the UK.

The past couple of weeks both Alex and Ben have been travelling around Lincolnshire and the rest of the UK trying out new foods so they’re back on Food for Thought to share their food experiences.

Alex and Ben from Snap It Taste It Blog It in the Siren FM studios | Photo: Snap It Taste It Blog It & Gemma Benefer

If you liked listening to this podcast then make sure you listen to Food for Thought on Siren FM every Wednesday at 2pm.

Spire Chocolates and cooking to save lives

The Lincolnshire charity Lives are releasing a local cookbook to help fundraise for themselves. Lives are a voluntary emergency service based in the county and they’re looking for pubs, cafes and restaurants to contribute recipes to the cookbook. It’s hoped that the recipe book will be available before Christmas and all the profit will go towards helping to run the charity.

To find out more about the charity, the cookbook and how people can contribute their recipes, Samantha Pidoux and I chatted to Steve Hyde from Lives and Chris Strawson from the printing company DPS.

Also on this week’s podcast I chatted to Lindsay Gardner from Spire Chocolates, which is based in Louth. It was fascinating to chat to Lindsay about how she got interested in making chocolates and how she creates her award winning flavours.

If you liked listening to this podcast then why not listen to Food for Thought on Siren FM every Wednesday at 2pm.

Valentine Warner on Food for Thought

Celebrity chef Valentine Warner has recently been to Scandinavia to find out about the food and the culture. He’s now sharing his experiences over on his Good Food show Valentine Warner eats Scandinavia and in an interview for Food for Thought.

Photo: UKTV

Valentine Warner is passionate about using local and seasonal foods — which is also a popular approach to food in Scandinavia too. During his travels Valentine went ice fishing with only a drill and bait, he also cooked with some unusual ingredients including blood and moss. In fact he enjoyed his trip so much he sounds like he wants to move there.

We also talked about why is so passionate about using seasonal goods, his inspiration when it comes to cooking and why he likes listening to music when in the kitchen.

Food for Thought regular Samantha Pidoux joined me for the interview and has written about it on her blog to get another take on our chat with Valentine Warner.

If you’ve liked this podcast then try listening to Food for Thought as it goes out live on Siren FM every Wednesday at 2pm .