11 June, 2017

Yesterday was a wonderful day. The sun was out in full force as we held our charity event at the Baytree Centre, and numerous people gave generously to help raise money for an exceptional cause - to contribute to the ongoing efforts of Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Every hour through the day we announced a handful of raffle winners, many of which walked away smiling. It was great to help lift their day the way they lifted ours. All raffle prizes were donated by local retailers and businesses, and there were just a handful that were left unclaimed.

These winners are listed as follows:


Sharon Dempsey, you have won . . .


Isabella, you have won . . .


Julie Bartlett, you have won . . .


Silvia Holiman, you have won . . .


Maria Brown, you have won . . .


David Morris, you have won . . .


Laurie Edmonds, you have won . . .

Congratulations to all of you, and thank you so much for your amazing support!

Please note that all prizes must be claimed at the Management Suite at Baytree Shopping Centre before the end of the business day on Tuesday 20th June.

We hope you enjoy your prizes!

And finally, we have raised 79% of our target for Great Ormond Street Hospital. With just 2-weeks left before our deadline, you can help our campaign get over the finish line at

Thank you all for your amazing support!


09 June, 2017

So the first question you might have upon speaking to the bucket holders at Baytree Shopping Centre tomorrow is "what can I win in this raffle, then?"

Well, how about we tell you right now?


Chicken and Frog


A Bear-y Tale by Anthony Browne
Summer Evening by Walter de la Mare
Herman’s Holiday by Tom Percival
A Fun ABC by Sade Fadipe and Shedrach Ayalomeh
Black Beauty by Anna Sewell
Heidi by Johanna Spyri
Beetle Queen by M. G. Leonard
Mold and the Poison Plot by Lorraine Gregory (signed copy)
Edwin Spencer by Julie Irwin (signed copy)

Pen Works Media


The Moors by Jody Medland (signed copy)
Street Girl by Rozana McGrattan
An Evening with Sir Thomas More by Wendy Reynolds (signed copy)
The Champion’s Squire by Elana A. Mugdan


Mosaic Base Handbag (worth £25)

Unique Beauty 4 U


7 x Pedicure voucher (£12 each)
1 x Luxury Manicure & Pedicure voucher (£30 each)
2 x Highlights (£45 discount) and Bouncy Essex Blow Dry (£20 discount)
4 x Hollywood Wax (£12 discount)
4 x Semi-permanent Lashes (£20 discount)

Chloe’s Beauty Bar

Free Nail file and Paint treatment

The Body Shop

Body Product Hamper


Specialised Assortment of Chocolate

Better Gym

1 Year Free Gym Membership (worth up to £249)

Brentwood Festival

Family Pass for up to 2 adults and 3 children (£125 approx)


Babyliss Men Professional Hair Clipper Gift Set (£50)

Rozen Child

Free signed CD
Free signed poster

Personal Donations

The Fragrance Shop

Vidal Sassoon Tangle Free Hot Air Styler
Along Came Betty products:

  • Creamy Shower Wash – Peachy Keen
  • Heavenly Bath Soak – Peachy Keen
  • Shimmer Bath Crystals – Peachy Keen

Notebook, Pen and 2017 Diary
Silver Clutch Handbag
Flameless Wax LED Candles
Play-Doh Cookie Creations
Disney Baby Mickey Smartphone

Not too shabby for a £1 entry, huh?

And don't forget, you can also enter our "Guess the Value" competition over at Heart of Gold - also just £1 a guess!

If you’d like to contribute to our campaign please come by on the day, or visit


07 June, 2017


For the week building up to our charity event, Heart of Gold jewellery store ran a "Guess the Value" competition, using a unique ring that was presented in their window display.

All entries cost £1, and all proceeds of the competition were donated to Great Ormond Street Hospital.

The winning entrant was Eloise Dale, whose guess was closest to the true valuation of £1,195. So congratulations to Eloise, who won a £50 Gift Voucher!

If you’d like to contribute to our campaign please come by on the day, or visit


05 June, 2017

We spoke to local author Lorraine Gregory about her first ever book, from which she'll be reading extracts for the shoppers of Baytree Shopping Centre on Saturday 10th June. 

What was it that made you become a writer?

As soon as I learned to read I wanted to write and spent most of my childhood scribbling stories. I loved the idea of people travelling through my imagination just as I had been on so many wonderful adventures through the books I’d read.

Whose writing do you most aspire to?

That’s a tricky one! There are so many authors I love and admire. I think Frances Hardinge has to be top of my list as she has such an amazing fantastical mind and a beautiful, lyrical style of writing, but I could pick 100 authors if you let me!

Where did the inspiration for your book Mold and the Poison Plot come from?

Well, it was actually my son who inspired me. I was complaining about the mess he was making with all his toys and threatened (jokingly) to throw them all in the bin, then I threatened to throw him in the bin, and then I said “but the bin men wouldn’t want you either!” My eyes glazed over and I had a flash of a baby in a bin and that was Mold. I spent the rest of the day working out why he was in the bin and what happened to him, and that was it. I wrote the first draft over the next three months.

The Chicken and Frog bookshop have been very keen to support your work. What does it mean to have local bookstores behind you?

The owners, Natasha and Jim, have been wonderful! They’re such generous, warm hearted people with a real passion for books. It’s been an absolute treat working with them and I’m so thrilled that they love Mold and are helping me to promote my book. It isn’t easy being a debut author, and support from a fantastic bookshop like Chicken and Frog is hugely important in helping children find out about my book.

Tell us a little about your book, and why people should attend your live reading at 2pm?

Mold and the Poison Plot is a fast-paced, funny, fantasy adventure set in a world with monsters and swamps and a little touch of magic. It’s about a boy who was left in the bin and his quest to save the woman who rescued him from being hung. Luckily Mold’s enormous nose gives him a special sense of smell and this book is chock full of pongs and whiffs and stinks.

Well there you have it! Join Lorraine in the Pop-up Shop unit at 2pm for an exciting live reading, all read in character. And as if that’s not enough, there will be a free smelly sticker for everyone! And you can follow Lorraine on Twitter at @authorontheedge.

If you’d like to contribute to our campaign please come by on the day, or visit


18 May, 2017

In preparation for our charity event on 10th June, we took time out to speak to Natasha Radford, co-owner of the Chicken and Frog Bookshop, about their involvement on the day.

Yourself and your partner are co-owners of Chicken and Frog Bookshop in Essex. What led you into such a business venture?

Madness! Ha! No, we were both always passionate about reading and we’ve literally both wanted to do this since we were 16. We went through a phase where Jim was out of work, and although I was earning quite good money at the time, we felt we had an opportunity to take a leap of faith – so we spoke to our kids. We have two girls and a boy, and even though they were all pretty young at the time, we valued their opinion because it was something we knew would change our lives as a family. Thankfully, they were supportive.

The bookshop itself is absolutely wonderful! Tell us a little bit about Chicken and Frog.

We’re a children’s bookshop who stock titles for babies right throught to Young Adults. We work closely with local schools via talks and book groups, and we also run a tuition centre as well as writing clubs in the shop. We love children, we believe in having a strong community, and so we do what we can in terms of events and sponsorships.

With the shop, why did you decide to put the whole emphasis on children?

Because children’s books are the best! And anybody who reaches adulthood without the ability to read is in big trouble. I honestly think that the escapism books offer children is important, and educationally, people who read seem to develop a much broader personality. In our shop, we don’t categorise books by age range because every child is different, so we encourage conversation before recommending what books our customers might enjoy.

You’ve recently agreed to support Baytree Shopping Centre’s charity event to help raise money for Great Ormond Street Hospital. What appealed to you about doing this?

It’s an amazing charity, and although we don’t know anyone who’s directly had to deal with them, we’re fully aware of all the great work they do. The community is what drives us; moreso than money, so there was never any doubt we’d be behind the project.

So what can we expect to see from Chicken and Frog on the day? 

We’re going to have our own designated pop-up shop in one of the units at the centre, and throughout the day we’re planning to get some of our local authors down to perform live readings of their work. Their books will be available to buy, so not only can customers get their copies signed by the author, but we’ll donate a percentage of every sale to GOSH. Also, I’ll be doing a 60-minute workshop on building origami bookmarks and other such things involving silliness, glitter and googley eyes, so it should be fun!

Chicken and Frog have also donated a number of books to the Baytree raffle, which you’ll be able to enter by buying tickets on the day. We’d like to thank Natasha for taking the time to speak to us, and we look forward to seeing them on Saturday 10th June.

 If you’d like to contribute to our campaign please come by on the day, or visit



31 May, 2017

If you happen to be around Brentwood on Saturday 10th June, there really is only one place to be.

At The Baytree Shopping Centre, not only will we have a handful of great pop-up shops and some exceptional live music, but we'll have all the following activities for you to enjoy . . .


09:00 – 17:30
              Centre opens
09:00 – 16:00              Information desk available
09:00 – 15:30              “Guess the Value” competition at Heart of Gold read more
10:00 – 16:00              Animal balloon pen open (Chapel High) read more
10:00 – 16:00              Torte cake stall open (Chapel High) read more
10:00 – 16:00              Pop-up shops open read more
11:00 – 16:00              Promotional staff roam centre and stands
11:30                           Raffle Draw #1
12:00 – 12:15              Rozen Child mini-gig #1/4 read more
12:30                           Raffle Draw #2
13:00 – 13:15              Rozen Child mini-gig #2/4
13:30                           Raffle Draw #3
13:30 – 14:00              Chicken & Frog origami workshop read more
14:00 – 14:15              Rozen Child mini-gig #3/4
14:00 – 14:20              Live Reading by local author Lorraine Gregory read more
14:30                           Raffle Draw #4
15:00 – 15:15              Rozen Child mini-gig #4/4
15:30                           Raffle Draw #5
15:00 – 15:20              Live Reading by local author Julie Irwin
16:00 – 16:15              Speech from centre manager, Daniel Foley
                                     Speech from GOSH representative
16:15 – 16:25              Heart of Gold competition winner announced
                                     Raffle Draw #6 (final winners announced)
16:25 – 16:30              Closing song by Rozen Child

With so much going on, we sincerely hope to see you there!

If you’d like to contribute to our campaign please come by on the day, or visit


16 May, 2017

In preparation for our charity event on 10th June, we took time out to speak to proud dad Anthony Newman about the ongoing support Great Ormond Street Hospital has given his family over the past 15-years.

What was the reason you had to get in touch with Great Ormond Street Hospital?

When my wife was pregnant with our first child, we found out during the 12-week scan that she had a cleft lip. The hospital we were being treated by weren’t specialists in this, so they referred us to Great Ormond Street Hospital, who had a specialist team in cleft lip repair.

How did you initially feel about the news?

You do feel a little shocked and devastated by any hint of a complication, because of course you want your child to experience life without any hindrances. In comparison to what other parents and children go through, people may say that a cleft lip isn’t the worst thing that could happen, and of course they’d be right – but it is a worry. Especially when you’re a first time parent.

How did you feel when you first started talking to GOSH?

Massively reassured. The one thing that stood out was how calm they were, and how well-informed they were about the subject. They told us exactly what to expect children to go through with a cleft lip, from infancy right the way through to their teens.

How were your daughter’s treatments structured?

She was just 3-months-old when she had her first lip repair, and it was followed up with check-ups every 6/12-months. After the first repair, there was very little they could do until all of her teeth had grown. When she was 10, she had a bone graft where they took a segment of bone from her thigh and placed it into her mouth to help with the growth of her adult teeth. She then continued to have brace treatments and regular treatments until the age of 15, which is now.

So the support GOSH have given you has lasted some time? 

Yes, 15-years and counting! They’re currently planning some potential jaw surgery for the end of next year to help align her lower jaw for adulthood. They’ve already started putting us in touch with people in their late teens who’ve had the operations, and I have to say it’s amazing to see the before and after pictures! We’ve always been incredibly well informed, and that’s the most important thing when you feel concerned.

What do you think GOSH means to your daughter?

She’s a teenager who’s full of confidence; moreso than I was at her age! Without the support of Great Ormond Street, I feel certain she wouldn’t have felt as at ease as she is. If you knock a person’s confidence when they’re young, I think the knock-on effect into adulthood can be detrimental.

What do you feel about GOSH as a charity?

Anything that can help the hospital continue is essential and has to be encouraged. It’s one of the most established and well-respected children's hospitals in the world, and that hasn’t happened by accident. To a parent, I think it’s vital they have the funding available to continue their great work. When you need expert advice, it really does make a huge difference to have them by your side.

Cleft lips and palates affect 1 in 7,000 children in the UK, and you can help parents just like Anthony by contributing to our fundraising campaign at


26 May, 2017

We were recently welcomed by two of the most delightful ladies in Essex, Diane and Jen, who flawlessly ran the office of Nicholls Build in the background while discussing their passion for Great Ormond Street Hospital.

Could you tell us a little bit about your company? 

Diane: My husband Keith, myself, and our two sons – Craig and Shane – formed the company in June 2007, so next month we’ll be celebrating our 10th Anniversary! We haven't as yet made any plans, but I'm sure we’ll do something as a family to celebrate.

Jen: We carry out domestic works such as extensions, kitchens and bathrooms, etc. But we also carry out commercial works and maintenance, with The Baytree Shopping Centre being an example of that side of the business.

As you’ve described, Nicholls Build is a family-run business. What’s it like working together? 

Jen: Well my mother-in-law’s sat right here, so I’d better say it’s great! Ha! In all honesty, it’s wonderful. The boys are out doing the work, and we’re here dealing with the bookings, logistics and admin, so it works well.

Diane: I think the important thing is we all get on, and we’re flexible. Because the men are generally out all day, it’s not like we’re under each other’s feet or anything. And we still manage to have nice long weekends away as a family, or split longer holidays up so the business is always taken care of. I think it’s great!  

What will you be doing at Baytree Shopping Centre on 10th June?

Diane: We’ll be building a small pen where children can come and walk a selection of balloon animals. 

Jen: Yes! Kids seem to absolutely love these things, so it will be a really nice thing for families to do, and they’ll be able to buy the balloons, too.

You’ve very kindly decided to give 100% of the money you make to GOSH. Why do you feel so passionate about charity?

Diane: Being that we clearly believe in family and community, we like to give back whenever we can, so we’re involved in a number of charity events throughout any given year.

Jen: And as the mum of a 3-year-old, I think any charity that helps children needs to be supported. Also, it’s just nice to be associated with what seems like an exciting event!

Do you have a specific connection to GOSH?

Diane: Let’s just say that without them, my nephew’s little boy wouldn’t be here. What I find most incredible about them is the support they give to the parents. Not only that, they really tap into what excites the child. They knew my nephew’s son was into Formula One, so they arranged pit lane tickets at Silverstone and got photos of him with all the drivers, like Jenson Button. The work they do is incredible, and that’s why we’re readily available to help. 

We’d like to thank Diane and Jen for meeting us, and we can’t wait to visit their adorable animal pen on Saturday 10th June, which will be located near the Baytree entrance on Chapel High.

If you’d like to contribute to our campaign please come by on the day, or visit

Easter Event Saturday 15th April 2017

05 April, 2017




24 May, 2017

For those of you who’ve visited The Baytee Shopping Centre recently, you might have seen the stunning cakes on display just outside the main entrance. The cakes were made by twin brothers, Artak and Arsen Poghosyan, and we took time to ask Artak where their passion for making cakes originated.

At what point in your life did you start baking? 

Ever since we were able to stand and look over the kitchen table, where mum would be baking the mandatory Lemon Meringue for the weekend, or the minimum 5 types of Christmas desserts and pastries! We would always help by opening cans, measuring the butter, or cleaning the bowl with our natural sponges – our tongues!

As we grew older, we created our own cakes and decorate them. But, of course, they were never as good as mum's.   

When did you realise you could make a living from it? 

The first elaborate cake we made was for our friend’s birthday, which was in the shape of his beautiful villa and swimming pool in the South of France. Everyone at the party said we should start a business, and the rest is history. 

What made you decide to focus on cakes?

Any occupation that involves creativity, artistry, and has the benefit of delicious off-cuts is a dream job, don't you agree? 

It’s definitely hard to argue with that! Given your answer, and that your company is called Torte Cake Art, is that how you view your work – as pieces of edible art?

Absolutely right! We wanted to communicate the message of edible art in our company name, and after many different versions, Torte Cake Art was selected. In Armenia, where we come from originally, Torte is the name of every desert: Victoria Torte, Lemon Torte, Carrot Torte. This is why we included Torte in our business title. 

How do you cope with the pressure of making a wedding cake?

It’s a huge responsibility, which we accept when taking the order. We guarantee the cake to be fresh and baked a day before for ultimate softness and great taste. We never freeze cakes or use cake mixes, which does create great pressure. But we just both work our way through various tasks as required. Job-sharing is the key when it comes to coping with the pressure.

As always, we’re up the night before until the early hours of the wedding morning, putting the final touches on the cake. We relax only when the bride and groom gasp in excitement upon seeing the cake.

You've agreed to give a percentage of every sale to Great Ormond Street. Is charity important to you?

Yes, it is. We donate cakes to local charities throughout the year, and we both work in the charity sector during the day: I manage a charity called Signpost for unemployed residents, and Arsen helps local charities access funding at Brentwood CVS. 

What type of cakes can we expect to find on your pop-up shop on the day?

Be prepared for summer tastes: orange strawberry cake, lemon meringue pies, kiwi and mango cake, pina colada cake, salted dolce de leche and of course chocolate carrot cake. You won’t know where to look, or which one to try first. 

We’d like to thank Artak for speaking to us, and we just can’t wait to taste these cakes on Saturday 10th June.

If you’d like to contribute to our campaign please come by on the day, or visit


Mothers Day Competition 2017

09 March, 2017


Pop-up Fashion for the Ladies of Essex

22 May, 2017

Gearing up for our charity event on 10th June, we spoke to the owner of fashion retailer Mokuba Moshwe about her involvement in our Great Ormond Street fundraiser.

You run a company called D'Avana. Can you tell us a bit about it?

D’Avana brings a sharp sense of style and excellence. Inspired by the world’s top fashion cities, we take on the empowering chic and elegant mix of London, Paris, New York and Milan. We understand that our customers look for something a little different that graciously demands respect, so we go all out and put every effort and care into supplying the finest quality products with affordable price tags for the self-assured woman.

Even though you're an online retailer, you'll be running a pop-up shop at Baytree's charity event. Are you excited? And what are you most looking forward to about the day?

D'Avana coming to Baytree is most certainly a thrilling thought. I'm very enthusiastic and confident that it's going to be an amazing day. With all the hard work Great Ormand Street Hospital put into their services I believe they are truly worthy of our support. Many years ago they saved my brother’s life, and to be able to give something back is an opportunity I don't want to miss. I'm looking forward to all the fun, and also meeting everyone else who’s supporting the cause. 

If there's one thing the people of Essex love, it's fashion. What type of products can shoppers expect to find on your stand?

You’ll be able to find a nice selection of our dresses, skirts, jumpsuits, tops, trousers and bags. All the Essex fashionistas will love what they see, and it will definitely be worth popping by for a look!

It seems the sun's finally coming. Do you have any great fashion tips for the summer?

Summer is all about fun and colours. This summer, I recommend going for saturated super bright colours. Make a statement with stripes and head-to-toe florals. Try a bit of mix and match, and hey – why not go a step further and rock your sunglasses indoors! At the S/S 17 shows, you may have seen more fashion editors wearing sunglasses indoors than ever before.

You've agreed to give a percentage of every sale to Great Ormond Street. Why do you believe it's so important to support charity?

At D'Avana, we truly believe that supporting local causes in our community will have a trickle down effect that helps everyone around us. As human beings, giving is in our nature. When you know you’re capable of supporting someone, then you absolutely should, whether it’s a person stumbling on the street or falling on hard times because of illness, and regardless of whether that person is close to you or a complete stranger. The company’s ethos is always to help. It's very important to us.

D’Avana will be donating a beautiful Mosaic Base Handbag to the Baytree raffle, which you’ll be able to enter by buying tickets on the day. We’d like to thank Mokuba for speaking to us, and can’t wait to see what style they bring to our event on Saturday 10th June.

 If you’d like to contribute to our campaign please come by on the day, or visit