Some facts you might not know about panto

Most pantomime feature a good fairy and a nasty villain, right? It is actually a custom in panto for certain characters to always enter from stage right (good characters) and stage left (for the baddies). This is a tradition formed from superstition where the right signifies Heaven and the left symbolises hell!

Have you noticed that the panto dame keeps dashing on and off the stage? Screenwriters tend to make scenes this way to show off the weird and wonderful costume even more!

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Theatre superstition tells us that the last lines of the finale pantomime, which are usually spoken in rhyming stanzas, may not be pronounced in rehearsal until opening night, as it is considered bad luck if they are.

The principal male characters (think Aladdin, Jack and Dick Whittington) tend to be played by women. Find out what’s on with Panto Preston this year at a site like

The hilarious scenes where characters get covered in gunge, bubbles or water is professionally known as ‘The Slosh Scene’. Recent shows have seen the use of substances such as wallpaper paste, laundry soap and even ice cream!

The first time Dick Whittington and his Cat performed on stage was more than 70 years ago in 1940.

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The panto fever never really ends. Each January, after completion of the pantomime season, theatre teams only have a month to work out what the next panto will be later in the year and scheduling rehearsals and actors!

Potential Problems when Selling your Home

Because of the stamp duty holiday announced by the chancellor in July, the UK property market is currently having a bit of a boom. Buyers who are keen to take advantage of the break from paying stamp duty are deciding that now is the time to buy, and because of this a flurry of people are also going to have a home to sell.

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If you would like to move soon and are going to be putting your home on the market, here are some of the main problems that a home could have that will deter buyers, so if you do have any of these, get them sorted before you go ahead with trying to sell your house…

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Damp – Damp is a common problem in lots of homes, but left unchecked it can run riot, and is a definite red flag to potential buyers who will be worried about the extent of the damage that will need to be repaired. It is most common in areas of the home with poor ventilation where water is abundant such as the bathroom, but this doesn’t mean that is the only place it can be found.

Drainage Problems – If you have a problem with your drains it is likely that the bad smell emanating from them will give it away. It may be something as simple as food clogging your kitchen sink which is easily rectified yourself, but if it is something further along the pipes or in an exterior drain find a company who specialises in blocked drains Bristol company can help you to put this right.

The benefits of installing a glass balustrade

1. Glass creates the illusion of extra space

One of the main reasons that glass elements are very popular in home design today is that it helps to create the illusion of more space in the building. This is especially true if items like balustrades are made from clear, see through the glass. The illusion of more space makes the area seem larger than it actually is, which is something that cannot be achieved using metal choice, chrome, or iron.

For glass railings on stairs or areas such as glass shower screens or glass doors, you can enjoy a transparent border, creating an open, fresh atmosphere with a little added privacy.

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  1. Glass doesn’t block the light

Glass balustrades are very popular because they have the benefit of not blocking out the light in the building. Glass also allows lots of light through, increasing the amount of natural daylight which helps to create an airy, open and fresh interior atmosphere.

  1. Perfect for contemporary interiors

A significant advantage of installing glass is that it brings an element of contemporary sophistication to any home. It would also be useful for you when you plan to sell your home because you will get a good amount of money for the sale again. This type of stylish beauty will attract many buyers too. For Bespoke Glass Balustrades, visit

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  1. Glass is easy to clean

Not only does a glass balustrade look fabulous, they are also easy to keep clean. Using a top-quality glass cleaning product with a microfibre cloth is all that’s required to keep your new installation in excellent condition, and it can be wiped down in just a few minutes.

Some of the best science labs in the world

Research labs are essential for improving the health and life of millions across the globe. The labs could be for medicine, IT, space exploration or defence and here are some of the top labs designed for these purposes:

  1. Palo Alto Research Center Inc

This lab has given us many things that have transformed our lives completely, such as the Ethernet, PCs and laser printers. It was set up in 1970 as a part of Xerox and soon became a leader in the IT sector.

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  1. The Broad Institute

Established in 2004, the Broad Institute often works closely with MIT and Harvard and has developed therapeutic drugs and extensive research into different cancers and genes. It is also home to one of the largest genome sequencing labs in the world. When labs need to move, leave it to the experts in Laboratory Relocation like

  1. LIGO

This lab made history when it became the first to see gravitational waves. LIGO stands for Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory. It is a large observatory that is capable of detecting these cosmic waves.

  1. Bell Labs

Named after Alexander Graham Bell and established in the 1880s, this is a private institution lab with huge influence. Their contribution has greatly impacted many fields of life, including computer programming languages and radio astronomy. No less than 13 Nobel Prizes have been given to work done at Bell Labs.

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  1. CERN

Set up in 1954, this is a European research organisation with the largest particle accelerator on earth. It investigates the tiniest particles known in the universe and is famous for the Hadron Collider.

How to get the best windows for your home

We hardly ever think about windows, unless they need washing; however, when it comes to replacing them, there are numerous choices we must make. Size, depth, how many, safety and security.  Once you have had them installed you might consider having a Locksmith In Dublin company like to come and fit new locks for you and repair any broken ones in old doors.

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Here is a simple guide to the main types of windows available and a few tips on getting the right windows for your home.

Double or triple?

The first choice you must make is what level of glazing you require. Most modern homes have double glazing, which offers a good degree of heat and sound insulation and is adequate for the majority of households. Triple glazing is usually not necessary unless you live in colder climates or areas in which noise is a problem.

Both double and triple glazing help to keep heat in your home. According to the Energy Saving Trust, energy-efficient glazing helps to reduce both your carbon footprint and your utility bills.


The next major choice you are faced with – and the one most people take the longest time deciding – is from which material your windows will be made.

The most popular choice is plastic, commonly called PVCu. Cheaper than other materials, PVCu is durable and easy to care for, providing you with years of trouble-free enjoyment of your windows.

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Wooden windows are also popular, especially on older properties where they may suit the style of the home better. Wooden windows can be made of softwood or hardwood. They undoubtedly look good, although they require more maintenance – such as painting – than plastic ones.

Softwood is cheaper and will suit those on a lower budget; meanwhile, hardwood is more expensive but more durable and stable, promising to last longer than softwood.

Windows are also available in other materials, including metals such as aluminium and steel and composites such as timber clad with aluminium. These windows suit more modern-style homes better and may be expensive, as they often have to be specially made.


The last issue you need to decide on when choosing windows is which style you desire. Most traditional homes opt for casement windows, which open outwards. They come in a number of different configurations.

Alternatives include those that tilt and turn – opening inwards – and sash windows, which are usually reserved for older homes.

What colours should you paint your bathroom in

Every room in the house needs a bit of colour even if it is a bit of off white. One of the most difficult places to get right is in the bathroom. What colour should you go for in the bathroom? There are several lines of thought. One thing is for sure you need to make sure that the plaster is solid before you start to apply anything to the walls. This is where a Plasterers Gloucester based firm comes into help if need be.

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The problem with a bathroom is that it will involve water. One of the most popular themes is that of the nautical and the seaside. When that is the case one of the most popular colours is that the dark or light blue stripe or hoops. That is not to say that you can’t use another colour. With Nautical it is sometimes a good idea to combine it with a rich red or green stripe as well.

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Be aware that if you use blue it can be quite a cold colour. Is this what you want when you get out of the bath or shower? This is why there is an argument for richer, more earthy colours.

We still love wooden houses.

When we decided to leave caves, possibly, archaeologists believe, because of overcrowding,  the first humans were faced with the immediate problem of where to live and in what. Maybe it was a race memory of when we lived in the trees but it was wood that they turned to. Using the paleolithic axes they had they began to chop down and shape the trees around them into  crude logs. This was the beginning of the Mesolithic era and the start of our love of wooden houses.

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There is something about a log cabin. It feels homely and secure. Trees naturally reduce heat so they act as natural barriers to keeping out the warmth of the day. On the opposite, they are also great at keeping out the cold. Just ask Southampton Timber Merchants

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In films and television the log cabin wood house has been used in so many settings. It is the scene for the hardy Frontier family battling against the elements and the Native Americans. In the horror genre it is where the teenagers make their last stand or an ill advised holiday like in The Cabin in the Woods.

Plastic. The modern building block of life.

Imagine a world where everything was made from metal, wood and wool. The transportation of liquids and foodstuffs would be extremely costly forcing prices to rise exponentially. Not only that,  the protection of certain surfaces, the construction of goods in the home, the waterproof clothes that we wear, all of these need to have plastic in their make up at some point.

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We need plastics and they are now completely dominant in our lives. We cannot keep on using wood as trees are precious. Metals are a finite resource. This is why companies like are looking to use Plastic Shelving as an option for your storage and warehouse needs.

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One other thing that should always be remembered is that the majority of plastic is recyclable. These can be used to make a plethora of new items. Wool cannot do that. Wood can be recycled but it usually takes the form of a weaker inferior type like chipboard or MDF. Cotton clothes are the victim of fast fashion, tonnes of it end up in landfill every year. We need to look at our use of plastics for certain, but at least we have a chance to reuse it  so that we do not need to add anymore as waste into the environment.

Keeping your heating

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When it comes to keeping your heating system running smoothly there are a number of things that you can do to try and ensure that your system is working to the best of its ability and hopefully make sure that your energy bills don’t skyrocket.

The first thing is to ensure that you have a Boiler Service Gloucester company such as come in annually to look at your boiler and give it a service to ensure that it is safe to use and running efficiently. If there are any issues with your system they will be able to tell you and deal with any remedial works or they may suggest a new boiler depending on the extent of the issues and the age of your existing boiler.

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Next you want to ensure that all of your pipes relating to your heating system are insulated to help prevent them from freezing during the cold weather. Frozen pipes can cause your boiler to have a major breakdown that will require and engineer to come and unseize the condensate pipes.

Lastly you should ensure that you regularly check the pressure in your system. You can do this relatively easily and adjust the pressure if you need to. Ask you boiler engineer to show you how to do this next time they come to do your annual service.

How to reduce the risk of dementia

Unfortunately, there are some risk factors you cannot change, these include:

Age: those who get diagnosed with dementia are usually over the age of 65. On top of this, the risk factor for dementia roughly doubles every five years. People aged 80 and over have a one in six risk of dementia. Find out how Dementia Care Homes Solihull can help at a site like

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Ethnic background: there are particular ethnic backgrounds that have a greater risk. For example, African, African-Caribbean and those from South Asia often develop dementia more often than white Europeans. The reason being is that they also have a higher risk factor for diabetes, stroke, hypertension and cardiovascular disease, also there are differences in smoking habits, diet, genetics and exercise.

Gender: Many more women develop dementia than men. Around the world, women with dementia exceed men by two to one. Twice as many women over age 65 were diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease than men, while vascular dementia was diagnosed slightly more in men than women.

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Genetics: rarely, Alzheimer’s can be genetically inherited, and this usually affects people under the age of 65. However, despite getting older being a factor likely to increase the risk of developing dementia, research suggests up to one in three cases of dementia can be prevented. Factors that can be helped include:

Preventing diabetes

Reducing alcohol intake

Taking care of high blood pressure

Getting more exercise

Better education

Preventing obesity

Improving physical health

Stop smoking