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A great way to introduce 8-12 year-old children to the importance of wildlife conservation through beautifully illustrated stories

By R. D. Dikstra

Courtesy of Literally PR we have a copy of ‘Tigeropolis – The Grand Opening’ to give away, just pop over to our Competitions Page for a chance to win!

  • A great way to introduce 8-12 year-old children to the importance of wildlife conservation through beautifully illustrated stories.
  • Always amusing with a vital message as a foundation.
  • Written by a conservation expert with decades of experience.

Tigeropolis, a vast tiger reserve in the foothills of the Himalayas, is home to a family of vegetarian tigers – tiger cubs Bittu, older sister Matti, their mother Tala and Uncle Raj.  For years, they’ve hidden from humans deep in the forest and have adopted a very modern lifestyle – they don’t hunt, they don’t roar, they live in a snug cave, furnished with things they have found in the local dump including a comfy sofa, a TV and even access to the Internet.

Their pleasant lifestyle is interrupted when they are forced to reappear. Tigeropolis is threatened with closure – people have stopped coming – they don’t believe there are any tigers left to see. The tigers know they need to reappear to encourage visitors to the park. Visitors will generate income and help keep the park (their home) open. But the humans meant to be running the park (the Forest Guards, Mr Mistry and his assistant Akash) prefer sitting in their guard-house drinking tea and eating chocolate cake. The tigers take it upon themselves to run

About the Author

Richard Dikstra is passionate about travel and wildlife having visited all seven continents and some 40-plus countries. His interest in wildlife started on a week-long trip on a cabin cruiser in Alaska’s Inside Passage surrounded by humpback and orca whales. Since that first trip he has, amongst other things, trekked in China in search of pandas, sat with mountain gorillas, camped out in the Canadian tundra watching polar bears, helped save a wounded water buffalo in Swaziland and visited nomadic reindeer herders in Russian’s Chukotka Peninsula.

A keen traveller and wildlife enthusiast, he helped found pioneering travel company Discovery Initiatives, and since 2000 he has been a shareholder and Non-Executive Director of specialist luxury travel operator Steppes Group. In 2010 he produced the First TOFT Tiger Tourism Awards in Delhi – the event is now an established feature in the tiger conservation calendar – and a year later, in 2011, Richard helped set up citizen science site ‘Tiger Nation’.

He wrote the first Tigeropolis book in 2015, inspired by his first ever sighting of a tiger in the wild. The second book was published the following year. The audio book of Tigeropolis is narrated by Richard E Grant and Belle Media produced a tie-in Tigeropolis video game, available on Apple TV and iTunes. Richard also found time to write a lively comic strip series for Hull City football club (‘Tigers’), based on his Tigeropolis characters.


Title: Tigeropolis – Caught in the trap

Author: R D Dikstra

Genre: Middle Grade, Children’s

Publisher: Belle Kids

Publication date: April 15th 2019

Availability: Paperback, eBook

ISBN: 978-0992746230

Number of pages: 176

Product Dimensions: 12.9 x 19.8

Price: £7.99

Author website:

Twitter: RDDikstrabooks


Press folder:

Online profile:—Tigeropolis-Caught-in-the-Trap.php


Cooking for toddlers, pre-schoolers & young families

(Chocolate & Banana Loaves recipe below!!)

Baking with Mrs Bun the Baker—the Revised and Expanded recipe book—contains 34 recipes (16 are brand new to the new edition released in August 2018).

This easy-to-follow, child-friendly cookbook is packed with toddler favourites and tried and tested, approved and munched recipes from the Young Buns who attend the award-winning cookery school for children and parents/carers, run by Angela Johnson AKA Mrs Bun the Baker!

The new book ‘Baking with Mrs Bun the Baker – Revised and expanded’ includes photos from Mrs Bun’s classes, and allows you to take away the magic that children have cooked-up in her kitchen. Enjoy a sprinkling of “bun fun”, to make and bake these delicious and easy recipes for all the family and help toddlers and pre-schoolers learn confidence in the kitchen.

“The goal for this book is to show that toddlers/children CAN cook, that they love to get involved in the preparation of food, they needn’t be kept out of the kitchen, and that they learn a lot from preparing food.” — Mrs Bun the Baker

About the Author

Five years ago, Angela established her award-winning cooking school in South Oxfordshire to teach cooking skills to all. In cooking classes children get to “Make, Bake and Take Home” all their goodies, gaining confidence and inspiring them to bake at home. Mrs Bun the Baker works with schools, nurseries, charities, communities, garden centres, food festivals and her own independent classes for toddlers, children, teens and families.

Recipe examples…

Snacks: Breakfast Roll Ups, Cheesy Biscuits, Potato Tortilla, Picnic Pies
Mains: Pizza and Dough Balls, Enchiladas, Orzo Veggie Bake, Curry in a Hurry
Sweets: Anzac Biscuits, Bakewell Cakes, St Clement’s Cheesecake



These little loaves are free of added sugar. They are sweetened with the banana, chocolate and a drop of honey.



  • 50g Butter
  • 100g SR Flour
  • 25-50g Chocolate
  • 1 Egg
  • 1 Ripe Banana
  • 1 tablespoon Honey
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract




Preheat the oven to gas 5/190c/170 Fan

You will need 4 mini loaf tins.



Cut the butter into small pieces. Using your fingertips rub the butter into the flour until it looks like a breadcrumb mixture. Shake the bowl and, if any lumps come to the top, continue rubbing them into the mixture.

Break the chocolate up into big or small chunks and add them to the flour.



Crack the egg into a jug and beat with a fork.

Use one thumb to make the crack in the egg bigger then, with the other thumb, open up the hole.

Peel the banana and chop it into slices. Mash the slices with a fork.

Place the mashed banana into the jug with the egg. Measure in the tablespoon of honey and the vanilla essence and mix them all together.



Mix the egg mixture into the flour mixture. Using a spoon, divide the mixture between loaf tins.



Place them in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes.



  • If you cannot get your hands on mini loaf tins, use a muffin tin, just grease round with some fat to stop them sticking.
  • Use dates instead of chocolate
  • Add a spoon of sugar if you need them a little sweeter

Diary of a Brilliant Kid is the tweenager’s atlas for navigating life




You can read an article by Andy Cope about HUGGS at the bottom of the page


This interactive collection of stories, quotes, theories and yes, science, guides you through the difficult years between ages 8 and 12 to help you make sense of yourself and the world around you. Everything is changing! And that’s okay! It’s actually more than okay it s exciting. These changes are the opening salvo of your gradual transition into grownup, and it’s the perfect time to define who you are, how you think and how you choose to face the world. Is it a lot? Yes. But this book can help you sort things out and come out the other side shining.

The journal format gives away the plot; Spoiler Alert: the Brilliant Kid is you. No matter how you feel, no matter what’s happening in your head right now, you are not broken. You are a unique collection of talents and dreams and wants and surprises, and you have an entire lifetime ahead of you. Aren’t you curious to discover just how awesome life can be? This book takes you inside your own head, out into the world and everywhere your dreams may take you.

  • Learn how to make the kinds of choices that make you feel alive
  • Conquer the three Rs of happiness: relationships, relationships and relationships
  • Get a handle on today, tomorrow and what comes next
  • Bounce back from the tough stuff, and discover the seven words that will change your life

There’s a lot to learn, but one lesson is clear: never be afraid to shine. Stand up, stand out and be spectacular whatever that means to you. Diary of a Brilliant Kid gives you the map and compass so you can start your own journey today.

For more information visit Diary of a Brilliant Kid 




Why your children need HUGGs (and you do too) by Andy Cope


If you want to be truly world class, we advocate that you take a bit of a gamble, go against the tide of traditional thinking and set massive goals. In ‘Diary of a Brilliant Kid’ we call them huge unbelievably great goals, or HUGGS. A HUGG is something that is currently out of reach – you have to grow, innovate and engage in order to achieve it. A HUGG is on the edges of achievability but it’s not out of sight. It might be that you only get half way there – but your achievements will reach far beyond having no HUGG at all. A HUGG isn’t something to be afraid of – it’s something to aspire to.

Maybe a better name would be ‘Everest goals’? Has Mount Everest ever been conquered? Yup. But only by a committed few.

Because, you see, stretching yourself is good. But to maintain your motivation you need to know where you’re stretching to. You need a goal, a mouth-wateringly exciting thing to aim for, and that’s where our HUGG pyramid comes into being.

Rewind. A few years ago I went on a training course run by an heroic genius called David Hyner and he introduced me to HUGGs. So I got home and did one. At that time I had an idea swirling in my head about a children’s book based on my pet dog. What if while I was at work and my kids were at school, my mutt went around town catching baddies and solving crimes? What if she was secret agent, a bit like James Bond but a dog, undercover as an ordinary family pet. What if she was a Spy Dog?

A million ‘Spy Dog’ books sales later, I’m telling you, this HUGG thing works.

It works well with children from age 10 upwards. The trick is to write your huge unbelievable great goal in the bubble at the top of the page, and to make it compelling. That means not only is it a big ambition, but that you really want it. It has to excite you. And when you’re written it, stop and have a think. Chances are, you can write it better. We’re hoping that you’ll ‘get’ that to be an OSCAR winning actress elevates the goal to a HUGG. As does, to smash my A-levels and get into a top 10 Uni. Or to get one of the lead parts in my school play.

Once you’ve nailed what your huge goal is, you then start at the bottom of the pyramid and work out what you’ve got to start doing EVERY SINGLE DAY OF YOUR LIFE – to stand any chance of that goal ever happening. The thing about HUGGs is, of course, that they’re jaw-droppingly big. You aren’t going to get into a top University by accident. Ditto becoming a Prem footballer, top scientist, #1 YouTuber or A-grade mathser.

Life is a never-ending upward spiral. If you think you’ve ever allowed to stop climbing, I’m afraid you’ve missed the point. The joy is in the climb itself. Plain simple English yet again, that means a re-think of your thinking so that when there’s a challenge you move away from rolling your eyes and huffing that ‘it’s not fair’ to a steely-eyed nod of ‘bring it on’.

So, when the bottom rung is filled in, you go to the next level of the pyramid. When you’re started doing the things on the bottom row, what next? And next? And after that?

When you’re finished, you will have a proper HUGG, in all its motivational glory. Stick it on your fridge. It will tell you what the huge goal is and give you a simple set of things to do or habits to adopt, that will move you forward.

There are no guarantees. You will need some luck along the way.

In fact, let me change the guarantees sentence – there is only one guarantee – your huge goal won’t happen by accident. It will only happen if you take sustained action.

And guess what, even if you don’t quite achieve your Huge Unbelievably Great Goal, you’ll have taken some massive strides forward. You’ll be way ahead of the version of you that had no idea what their goal was!

Pass it on…

Will Hussey, Andy Cope and Gavin Oattes are the co-authors of Diary of a Brilliant Kid, a personal development book for 8-12s available now on Amazon.

Seriously ill children and their families across the UK enjoy Starlight’s Summer Escapes!

Starlight Children’s Foundation hosted a series of summer events for seriously ill children and their families across the UK. The children’s charity, which provides support to families through extensive hospital entertainment and wish granting, held a total of five Starlight Escapes to give children and young people with serious and lifelong conditions some much-needed time away from their hospital beds and treatment.

The Escape season kicked off in June with two boating parties at Sonning and Hampton Court. Here children got dressed up in pirate gear and enjoyed a host of pirate themed games, including walking the plank, before families set off on a real pirate adventure down the River Thames.

The next memorable day out was the charity’s Sky-High event at Preston Capes in Northamptonshire. Both children and their families from the surrounding areas, enjoyed the thrill of helicopter rides, plus rides on a vintage bus, fire engine and tractors when back on the ground.

Sam Hines, mum to Starlight wish child Brandon who has quadriplegic cerebral palsy said ‘It was the most enjoyable day we’ve ever had, the lads absolutely loved it, especially the helicopter ride.

It was amazing from start to finish. We struggle to get both boys out and about due to them both being in wheelchairs, but everyone was so helpful. It was so refreshing for us all to get out as a family and make memories. It will definitely be a day we won’t forget”.

Starlight then held their annual Summer Party at Belmont Farm in London on one of the hottest days of the year at the end of July. The outdoor fete-style party has become a much-loved day out for Starlight wish children and their families, as well as families from local hospitals and hospices.

The jam-packed day included clay pigeon shooting, an animal petting area and pony and trap rides to arts and crafts, a bouncy castle and fete games.

The charity then rounded off their summer of fun with their biggest event of the year at Popham Airfield in Winchester. The event, which was attended by almost 700 people, included helicopter and aeroplane rides at what was an unforgettable day of adrenaline fuelled action!

The fun didn’t stop back on solid ground, with pony rides, magicians, entertainers, face-painters and rides on some very special motorbikes and supercars. The day also finished with Starlight’s first ever ‘Floss off’ with children, families, volunteers and staff all taking to the dance floor to show off their best moves!

Starlight’s Escapes are supported by volunteers, who offer their time, expertise and vehicles to create a truly special day for the families. The events have become crucial days out for families with seriously ill children, as they provide them with the opportunity to spend memorable days together at a time when they need it the most.

Roberto’s mum, who attended the boating escape at The Upper Thames Yacht Club at Hampton Court, sums up the Starlight Escape experience as;

“Days like today are a great moment to pause and remember the gift of being a family, to have

time together that isn’t about trips to hospital, needles or bad stuff. They really are ‘respite days’ – a way in which to escape and feel a million miles away from the normal stuff”.

For more information and to find out how you can help Starlight provide more days out for seriously ill children and their families visit

Special Needs Parents launch trendy tube feeding clothing brand “Tubie Kids”

In 2010, Zayne & the family were blessed with a beautiful and very special baby girl who was born with very complex respiratory and gastro medical issues making her number 7 in the world with her rare genetic condition called “Duplication 22q12q13”.

Little did they know that the tiniest things we normally take for granted in life such as eating orally and swallowing saliva was actually life threatening for their baby girl.

After spending months on end at Great Ormond Street Hospital and undergoing treatments and investigations, a year on, the family proudly started a new journey and became tubie parents. This meant that their daughter Karma had to be fed via a tube that was surgically placed directly in to her stomach.

Finding fashionable tube friendly clothing was proving to be pretty difficult.  At feeding times, the family would have to fully undress her to get to Karma’s feeding tube.

Their solution at the time was to cut holes in her clothing to access her feeding button or thread the feeding tube through bodysuit popper openings. This worked for a while until she started to outgrow the traditional baby onesies available in the high street shops.

The clothing situation as a whole was not ideal especially when “out and about” in cold weather with respiratory issues. Let alone from a dignity point of view!

Zayne, Karma’s mum, stated that “Our children become fashion conscious and like to look and be the same as other children. Colours and style is a way of saying who they are without having to speak”.

Karma is non verbal, has a bubbly and cheeky personality and they wanted tube friendly clothing that reflected that. This inspired the family and the brand “Tubie Kids” was born in April 2018.

Their fashion line is fresh, vibrant, full of colours and personality which the market lacked.

The adaptations in designs are so discreet you would not even tell the difference. This allows tube fed children, also refered to as tubie kids to be kids in their own right and express their own personalities through colours and designs without having to compromise dignity, comfort or functionality of the garments.

Their sizes currently start from 3 yrs to 12 yrs old. However, they will introduce larger sizes in the future if they receive requests for them.

Zayne pointed out that “All the items are sensory friendly”. They have been designed to incorporate flat seams and no labels throughout. The fabrics used are soft to feel and 100% high quality cotton for long lasting durability. They have also selected dual sizing so the children don’t outgrow them fast.

Leanne (a Tubie kids customer) said “ The quality and design are flawless, so glad I stumbled across their facebook page by complete accident they are exactly what we’ve needed for a long time”

Nicola (another Tubie Kids customer) stated “I’m absolutely in love with these new tubefeeding t shirts! They are very well made and of very high quality material. I love the fact that they actually look like a t shirt, they have another hidden vest underneath with a large hole to access the peg/button. Highly recommended them!”

 Prices range from £14.50 to £16.50 and can be purchased from their online store

For more info:

Contact Zayne on [email protected] or via their fb page @tubiekids

PureStyle of London has launched the first subscription-based “Home Fragrance Club’ which offers consumers a new mix & match experience in this category.  Additionally the consumers can as well opt for the one-time-purchase Gift Set, which is great to give to family and friends.

Consumers can choose their own size and colour candle or diffuser and reeds with their favourite fragrance!  This can be done with the convenience of being at home and selecting and choosing online from their sofa and getting the final product conveniently delivered on the doormat and replenished if preferred.  All products are locally hand poured and social engaged and environmentally friendly!

Just a few long-lasting fragrances:

  • Neroli Rose [Rose Garden] is a delicate, sweet Orange Blossom and calming, soothing Rose intoxicate the senses
  • Citrus Lavender [Unwinding Moments] – Fruity vibrant citrus combined with soft calming lavender evoke the scent of an English garden
  • Nordic Pine [Morning Walk] is an aromatic and woody, a bracing walk through the pine forest on a bright frosty day. Relaxing!

For more information click here

The West Kent Family Grapevine is delighted to be able to give away a Reed Diffuser ‘Indulge’ to celebrate the launch of these great fragrances.  Visit our Competitions Page for a chance to win.

 Having studied at the renowned Elsa Van Der Nest Culinary Academy in Cape Town, South Africa, Laura has enjoyed cooking all her life.

Laura noticed a gap in the ready meal market for organic, additive and preservative free meals and decided to start her own business focusing on producing meals for busy families, working couples, hungry singles and older generations who are perhaps not mobile and unable to cook for themselves.

Harley’s Home Cooked strive to achieve excellence, aiming to always use seasonal ingredients locally sourced from independent suppliers. 

-Sample Menu-

Harley’s Home Cooked also cater for parties and events and have a wide selection of canapes and bowl food’

For more information please have a look at Harley’s Home Cooked Facebook Page here or email [email protected]




Considering everything from hormones to Homer Simpson, from parental leave to the pay gap, Dads Don’t Babysit asks why fathers are sometimes unwilling, but more often unable to share the pleasures of parenting.

More and more men want a bigger role in their family – bringing up baby, hanging out with their kids. Yet it’s not happening. At home and in the office, from the breakfast cereal ad to the bedtime story, parents are subject to different pressures and expectations about what their role should be. Mums and dads are prevented from making a free and fair choice about how they share parenting.

It’s time to put that right.

Using the latest research, personal insight, interviews, and some cartoons, two dads make the case for equal parenting. They show that more and more parents want to split bringing up the kids fairly; why this can be good for everyone involved; and why this is proving so difficult in practice.

They set out the biggest barriers to sharing parenting more equally, and offer real solutions for putting it right in an accessible, personal and light-hearted way that any parent or parent-to-be will relate to.

About the Authors

David Freed is a successful dad blogger who writes about sharing parenting on his blog Dad’s Turn: Raising Little Bear ( A social scientist by background, he was one of the first dads in the UK to take half a year of Shared Parental Leave, sharing responsibility for his son equally with his wife. Whilst doing so, he developed first-hand experience of how great it can be being the lead parent, but how despite some small progress in recent years, he is still out of place as a dad in a week-day world of mums. He now works part-time to look after his son during the week.

James Millar is a father and went part-time in 2014 whilst a Westminster journalist. He’s blogged about that experience and the way people treated him at the time – the suspicion that he lacked ambition because he was taking time to look after his child. James has been a journalist for more than 20 years and published ‘The Gender Agenda’ with his partner in summer 2017. Dads Don’t Babysit grew out of that book.

For a chance to win a FREE copy, visit our Competition Entries Page





 Esquires Coffee is launching a brand new store in Tunbridge Wells

Ethical community coffee brand Esquires Coffee is launching a brand new store in Tunbridge Wells. Opening on Tuesday 28th August, the new store will offer a great range of Fairtrade and organic coffee, teas and chocolate, as well as tempting food from brunch and lunch through to dinner, and children’s menus.

Offering much-loved classics as well as healthy, vegan and vegetarian dishes, all dishes are available to eat in or take away in fully compostable boxes. Delicious, seasonal food offerings range from smashed avocado with chilli, lemon, rocket & tomato, and Nutella French Toast to halloumi fries with za-atar, sumac & a lime yoghurt dip, and Esquires’ signature Panko Buttermilk Chicken with hot pepper mayo & mirin pickled cucumbers or Paratha Bacon Roll.

Esquires focus on sustainability and social responsibility; all fruit and vegetables are locally and sustainably grown where possible. It also supports the local community and uses independent and family run suppliers whenever possible. All eggs are British, free range and are laid by Copper Marans hens on farms in the South of England. The fresh meat is free range and sourced from farms in leafy Suffolk and salmon is sourced ethically from suppliers all over the British Isles.

Esquires Coffee Tunbridge Wells takes pride in its community spirit and central location on Mount Pleasant Road, one of the main shopping roads in Tunbridge Wells and not far from the famous Pantiles.

Waqas Yaqoob, Owner of Esquires Coffee Tunbridge Wells says, “Whether you want to meet friends for a quick coffee, take your time over a long lunch, pop in for a bite to eat with your dog, or study with friends, our shop is much more than a coffee house, it’s a cool and quirky environment, filled with communal tables and cosy seating. With the added benefit of delicious food and, of course, great coffee, we can’t wait to welcome our local community in!”

The store will open on Tuesday 28th August at

Esquires Coffee Tunbridge Wells, 70 Mount Pleasant Road,

Tunbridge Wells, Kent TN1 1RJ.

Opening hours are

Monday to Friday 7am – 9pm, Saturday 9am-9pm and Sunday 9am-6pm.


Excitement is building for The Cook Book Sevenoaks/Tonbridge/Tunbridge Wells. This will celebrate many of the chefs and local restaurants in West Kent and feature an abundance of recipes for you to try from your favourite eateries in the area. Many local businesses signed up to be in the book from the outset, with others following shortly afterwards.

Children’s charity Tree of Hope are pulling this book together and have already gained the support of Kent born celebrity chef Michel Roux Jr. who is firmly behind the book and has offered to write the forward.

Michel Roux Jr. comments: “As a boy born in Kent, I champion this book and the wonderful stories it tells. As a chef, I cannot express enough how important local producers are and how each one should be celebrated. The work that Tree of Hope does is so crucial for children and families across the nation and it is hugely important that we all continue to support them”.

As well as gaining the support of Michel Roux Jr. for the book, Tree of Hope has also welcomed the services of well-known designer Dan Smith who has designed the vibrant front and back covers for the book. He is responsible for designing the runaway success BOSH and was recently behind Jodi Picoult’s campaign and has designed covers for John Grisham.

The Cook Book will be published on November 1st in conjunction with independent cook book specialists Meze Publishing. There is sure to be a large demand for the book, so to be sure to get your very own limited edition copy you can pre-order the book by visiting:

Gill Gibb, CEO at Tree of Hope comments: “We are overwhelmed by the support we have received for The Cook Book from local businesses and the local community and can’t wait to see the final copies once they are printed. There is a real sense of pride in the book from everyone involved. We also want to say a special thank you to Michel Roux Jr. and Dan Smith for wanting to be part of this book. Your contributions have made it extra special and one to stand out from the rest.”

All profits from the book will raise funds for Tree of Hope to enable them to help more sick and disabled children get the treatment and therapies they need

About Tree of Hope

To find out more about the work of Tree of Hope please visit of Hope was founded in 1992 in Bexhill by Corinne Gardner, who wanted to help two local children with rare diseases to have a better quality of life through operations and treatments not available on the NHS. She did so by raising funds with their families. We are now a national charity supporting more than 800 sick and disabled children to have operations, therapies and specialist equipment that are not available through the NHS or social healthcare. We provide support to families to set up their own fundraising campaigns for life-changing treatments and help them raise to over £2m every year. We offer each family an online platform for fundraising, advice and guidance, and support throughout their campaign.


Tree of Hope is a registered children’s charity which receives no grants or donations from local or central government. All money raised to help our families comes from fundraising efforts from the public, companies and community groups, and donations from individuals, towards each family’s campaign and to cover the costs of running the charity, which is based in Tonbridge, Kent.