3 Great Ways to Hide Those Unsightly Wheelie Bins & Boxes

Whether you live in terraced property, a semi-detached or a detached property, or even a manor house, one thing is certain - the variety of wheelie bins and/or boxes that you will be "encouraged" to sort your kitchen, recyclable and garden waste into are at best, "not very sightly".

As these bins and boxes are now almost ubiquitous, there is a growing industry based around how to hide these wheelie bins from sight.

Traditionally, unsightly areas of the garden were screened off with trellis, plants and walls. But the wheelie bins need to be both accessible on a regular basis and able to be "wheeled out" once every one or two weeks for collection - so it needs to be in a convenient place and easily accessible - which tends to mean visible.

There are a myriad of products on offer to "screen off" these bins - at we are offering 3 quality ranges to help meet the many differing needs. All come from British Companies:

Wheelie Bin and Box Storage Cupboards in Pressure Treated Cedar Wood
Wheelie binand box storage in pressure treated cedar These wheelie bin storage cupboards are the "Rolls Royce" of bin and box storage.

Made in sizes to fit everything from a single wheelie bin to 5 bins and covering a combination of bins and boxes (see left 2 x bins and 2 x boxes) they also come in sizes to cater from wheelie bins from 120 litre to 360 litre including mixed sizes like 2 x 240 litre + 1 x 140 litre.

Made to order in Blackburn

Wheelie Bin Screens in Choice of Colours and Bin Sizes - Wipe Clean Plastic & Rubber Wheels
These hand made "pens" are made by Trevor Waas and his wife at SmartFab Ltd. near Retford in Nottinghanshire.

Made from high quality plastics, they come in 6 x colours, 3 bin sizes and for 1, 2 or 3 wheelie bins.
They incorporate great features like rubber wheels for ease of moving out when the bins need "putting out" and all "pens" have flower trays on either side at the top to help them blend in with their environment (see "before and after example" at the top of this blog).

They are delivered fully assembled and currently available outside the M25 and excluding the Highlands, N Ireland and Isle of Wight.

These are new to this month.
 Flower tray on SmartFab Pen
SmartFab pens all have rubber wheels to make them easy to move
Created On  28 Jun 2016 16:28  -  Permalink

Edwin Blyde - Making Pewterware Since the 18th Century

The Spur has been the Trademark of Edwin Blyde & Co. Ltd for some 130 years when one of the Blyde family joined the Company straight from a Cavalry Division of the British Army.

Blyde's history can be traced back as far as the 18th century when one of its main activities was the manufacture of Pewterware. Blyde's manufacturing started when steam power and belt driven motors were used, when candle and oil were the only means of light, through the torrid times of world wars.

Our progress in the manufacture of finest quality Pewterware has taken great strides and as one of theleading manufacturers of Pewterware in the World we are conscious of our fine heritage and of the city we represent.The Sheffield City Council desirous of preserving Sheffield's reputation for craftsmanship and high quality wished to accord its tribute to manufactures and goods which are recognised for these qualities.

Therefore, acting upon advice the City Council has been pleased to approve the Coat of Arms of the City of Sheffield in association with specified products manufactured solely in Sheffield by Edwin Blyde & Co Ltd.The Worshipful Company of Pewters, which is 16th in order of precedence in the City of London, was granted a Royal Charter by King Edward IV in 1473.This charter allowed the Company to set and enforce standards and to regulate the pewter trade throughout England.

A resurgence in Pewter during the last century can in the main be attributed to the formation in 1970 of the Association of British Pewter Craftsmen (ABPC). The initiative was taken by a group of manufacturers, the metal suppliers and the Worshipful Company of Pewterers. By promoting high standards, raising awareness of pewter and encouraging innovation and excellence in manufacturing, ABPC has achieved impressive results and together with the Pewterers Company has helped to establish British Pewter firmly in both domestic and worldwide markets. 

Pewter is an attractive metal which has been used for the production of household and other items in Britain since Roman times. It is an alloy consisting mostly of tin which has been mixed with small amounts of other metals such as copper, lead (not used nowadays) or antimony to harden it and make it more durable.

Pewter Carousel Money Box  Round Flasks in Pewter  Pewter Tankards 
Created On  25 Mar 2016 9:14  -  Permalink

Busts of Famous Faces from History and Literature

Busts of Famous Faces from History and Literature
Background by Timothy Richards of Revival Arts of Bath

At the workshop of Revival Arts of Bath, we continue a tradition that has been practised for centuries. The quest for discovery and the interest in themes of adventure, treasure and mystery and the unanswered questions of past civilizations, is as relevant today as it has always been. The Ancient worlds themselves were interested in learning from the past through archaeological discoveries but it was the powerful expansion of European nations in the 18th and 19th centuries that really opened up this world of exploration and expedition. They invested heavily and extensively in sending expeditions to Egypt, Greece, South America, India and China, the four corners of the globe.

These expeditions were tasked with exploration, discovery and deciphering the ancient worlds through the wealth of artifacts and treasures that they found. These rare finds were brought back by wealthy patrons and rulers who created museums and stores to house and display these extraordinary treasures. They went to extreme lengths, sometimes bringing back whole buildings. Another method of capturing the past on a colossal scale was to employ large teams of men to take full size plaster moulds of the discoveries that could not be moved.

The public interest in this world of discovery and representation was so intense that museums were constantly brimming with people in awe of these wonderful collections. This led to the establishment of a number of plaster casting workshops, of which the Gipsformerei of Berlin is a wonderful example, to replicate the finds for distribution and exchange to Museums and collectors around the world.

This is where the skills of the master craftsman and mould makers were developed, and these skills, techniques and methods have not changed to this day. At the Revival Arts of Bath workshop we employ the same attention to quality and detail that the master mould makers of the 18th and 19th centuries used to such great effect. The skills of these historical mould makers and the workshops that employed them were integral to the distribution of knowledge and its inclusion within the culture of nations.

The demand to own the representations of these pieces led the workshops and formaries to create small scale reproductions, allowing the public to have these remarkable artefacts from the ancient worlds in their own homes. They became interior design objects on a mass scale. The plaster cast had given the people access to these significant stories of the past.

The Revival Arts of Bath collection celebrates this rich heritage and is proud to continue this work.  At the workshop we produce castings of Egyptian discoveries, Classical and Roman treasures, extraordinary examples from the renaissance period as well as more contemporary pieces including our Art Deco range.

All of our pieces are entirely produced in our workshop in Bath England and each piece is hand cast and finished by our team of craftsmen using traditional methods and the finest British Gypsum plaster. Our collections can be found in Museums, galleries and shops of some of the finest heritage organizations around the world. We have also undertaken bespoke commissions for many of these illustrious bodies.

Famous Faces - Miniature Plaster Busts of Famous Figures from History, Literature and Antiquity
Historical Busts from Distinctly British
Busts after moulding of the body
Revival Arts have sculpted a delightful range of miniature busts (11cm - 13cm high) and produced them in a fine textured, hard plaster, British Gypsum Plaster, to give them a very smooth, hard finish.
They are all molded and finished by hand from molds made from the original sculptures by Revival Arts.
All the busts have "flat backs" and feature a range of miniature moldings around the base from figures in the history of each model together with an engraving on the plinth.

They come packed in a recycled cardboard box together with a cartoon gift tag.

There are 22 busts to choose from - see the complete range on the Distinctly British Store.

Bust of Jane Austen

Bust of Isambard Kingdom Brunel

Bust of Charles Darwin

Bust of Winston Churchill

Bust of Wellington

Bust of Shakespeare

Bust of Queen Elizabeth 1st

Bust of Queen Elizabeth II 2012

Bust of Queen Victoria

Bust of Robbie Burns

Bust of Henry V111

Bust of Christopher Marlowe

Bust of Nelson

Bust of Charles Dickens

Bust of Lord Kitchener

Bust of Oliver Cromwell

Sir Christopher Wren - Miniature Bust

William Morris - Miniature Bust

Roman Goddess Athena - Miniature Bust

Aphrodite - Miniature Bust of Greek Goddess

Bust of Roman Emperor Hadrian

Sherlock Holmes - Miniature Plaster Bust 13.1cm

Created On  23 Feb 2016 10:04  -  Permalink

Linden Leisure - Unique Walking Seats and Shooting Sticks

Linden Leisure Ltd is a small family business that was founded in 1969.

They are based in Winchcombe, a small Cotswold town near Cheltenham, in Gloucestershire, England. Although their premises are "in the country”, delivery to any destination is not a problem, as Winchcombe is are close to all major transport routes.

Originally they manufactured products for the Hardware/DIY market, supplying some of the major retail chains here in England. In 1986, they designed and produced the "Elite” range, the first of their shooting sticks and since then, have developed the products you can see and purchase here on

Including 2 x unique folding versions, the range covers 


elite seat range
 Elite Shooting Sticks / Seats
The Shooting Stick single stem design is ideal for those who want to rest when out & about in either the town or country.
From walking stick to restful seat in an instant.
Light in weight, approximately 600gms, the Elite Seat comes in four versions and in three colour ways, Black, Brown or Green. 
All Elite Seats have a strong "bicycle” shaped seat and the main stem is painted to match the colour of the seat. 
All models have a maximum user weight of 125kg. 

The folding "packaway" version includes both rubber foot and point and plate foot (interchangeable)and a handu waterproof carry bag.

Ideal for putting in your suitcase or hand luggage.

Supaseat Range

 Supaseat Shooting Sticks / Seats
he Shooting Stick single stem design is ideal for those who want to rest when out & about in either the town or country.
The Supaseat opens from a walking stick in a "butterfly” action to form a wide contoured seat in an instant. 
Light in weight, approximately 600gms the Supaseat comes in four versions and three colour ways, Black, Brown or Green.
The main stem is painted to match the colour of the seat. 
All models have a maximum user weight of 125kg. 

The folding "foldaway"version includes both rubber foot and point and plate foot (interchangeable)and a handu waterproof carry bag.

Ideal for putting in your suitcase or hand luggage.

Trio Seat Range
Trio Walking Seats  
The "Trio” three legged Seat-Stick is suitable for people who want to sit for a longer period of time, or require greater stability than the traditional Shooting-Stick.
The Trio seat is easy to use as a walking stick and provides a comfortable oval seat when opened. Ideal for use around town, visiting museums, art galleries, shopping or for when you need to take a rest from walking or standing. 
Light in weight, approximately 800gms the Trio is available in two seat heights, three colour ways Black, Brown or Green and two finishes, standard aluminium or "Deluxe”. The frame of the Deluxe model is painted to match the seat colour.
All models have a maximum user weight of 125kg.

Quattro Seat Range
 Quattro Walking Seats
The "Quattro” four legged Seat-Stick is suitable for people who want to sit for a longer period of time, or require greater stability than the traditional Shooting-Stick.
The Quattro is easy to use as a walking stick and provides a comfortable canvas seat when opened. Ideal for use around town when shopping or waiting for the bus and is a valuable aid for those who need to take a rest from walking or standing. The two handled design offers the user support, if needed, when sitting down or getting up.
Light in weight, approximately 1kg the Quattro is available in three heights, two colour ways Black or Green and two finishes, standard aluminium or "Deluxe”. The frame of the Deluxe model is painted to match the seat colour.
All models have a maximum user weight of 125kg. 

Out & About Range
Out and About Walking Seats
The "Out & About” is our "Top of the Range” foldable seat. Opening quickly & easily, the Out & About has a strong, durable fabric seat and back rest, to provide a comfortable chair.
When folded, it has a velcro strap to keep it secure and its two handles makes it easy to carry. Ideal for picnics, watching cricket, outdoor concerts or taking away in the caravan. The Out & About weighs approximately 1.8kg is available in three colour ways, Black, Green or Burgundy and two finishes, standard aluminium or "Deluxe”.
The frame of the Deluxe model is painted to match the colour of the seat available in Black or Green only.
All models have a maximum user weight of 125kg.
Created On  25 Jul 2015 9:25  -  Permalink

Heathergems - Hand Made in Scotland

Heathergems is a unique and imaginative range of Scottish jewellery and giftware, made in Pitlochry, Scotland from natural heather stems. They are the only manufacturers of this unique Scottish product anywhere in the world.

The original company was set up in a small factory in East Kilbride and began producing Heathergems in the spring of 1970. A few years later it was decided it should be moved to a more natural home in the Highlands. As a result, the company moved to Blair Atholl in Perthshire in 1979. Hugh Kerr died in 1974 and Charles Buyers in 1992. The family decided to move to a new factory in Pitlochry. This has been developed over the years and now includes and shop and visitor centre.

They are the only manufacturers of this patented product which is made from Scottish Heather whhich id dried, dyed, compressed into a solid block and then cut, polished and laquered into a unique Gemstone for their famous Scottish jewellery.

Distinctly British are proud to feature a selection of this heathergems jewellery which makes an ideal British gift fro Christmas, Birthdays - or just for yourself !

Created On  11 Nov 2014 10:45  -  Permalink

Nottingham Lace Tableware

Nottingham Lace Tableware From the early/mid 1800 Nottingham became THE hotbed for Machine Made Lace with exports world-wide), this continued until the industry’s demise with the onset of the war years (see Nottingham Lace Market).

It should be noted that the true and original Nottingham Lace Machines  were "14 point” and have 17,920 threads! They were 8 Metres long, and if one thread unfortunately breaks the whole machine is stopped, while the damaged thread is located and replaced. (costly – yet there was no other answer ).
Nottingham lace is usually referred to as "Leavers” and / or "Cluny”  although later the operation of Nottingham Lace manufacturing, also began to include/utilised the "Rachel” technique.

However, even though manufacturing numbers are dramatically reduced today, several highly reputable, specialist manufacturers/suppliers of "world renowned Nottingham Lace” still operate today, with one single yet reputable manufacturer actually based in Scotland.

It is from individual styles of lace manufacturers, which we access the quality materials used within our collections and are offer DIRECT to the consumer through

"Nottingham is the perfect place for the "finishing" of lace, as the city and area is  built on "bunter sandstone” - this physical environment and location creates the "brightest” water, free from all organic matter, yet containing Chlorine and Ammonia. These two natural constituents present in the water, assist greatly the bleaching and cleaning process which produces "quality finishing".

see images of modern lace machines on Google - click on image

Nottingham Lace is famous world-wide. Yet of the two processes necessary to the manufacture of machine-made lace – making and finishing - only the latter was solely concentrated in Nottingham. The functions needed to convert the large dirty webs of lace from the factories into the fine, finished fabric so beloved by the Victorians and Edwardians were to be found in numerous locations in the Nottingham conurbation. Hence, the famous Nottingham lace girls in their pristine white blouses and long skirts thronging the streets of Nottingham’s Lace Market were but a part of the finishing section of the industry and not the actual makers of lace” ( ref Sheila A Mason)

Today the Nottingham's lace industry is compact, with a small numbers of individual specialist supplier/provider companies -  personal and business friends of Elizabeth Cooke at The World of Lace.

So what is "Nottingham Lace"?

Lace is an ornamental open fabric, formed by looping, interlacing, braiding, plaiting or twisting threads to make a series of controlled holes. It has been manufactured in one form or another for over 300 years. The ingenuity of the "sons of Nottingham" ensured Nottingham Lace became the generic term for the exquisite British machine-made Lace.

Created On  22 Sep 2014 15:52  -  Permalink