Christmas is a time of year when the shops are flooded with books of all shapes, sizes, and topics, but one very special book has caught our attention here at music.co.uk, and we just had to include it in our Christmas Gift Guide
This piece is all about The Royal Chelsea Hospital and the very creative ways they raise funds. The hospital was founded in 1682 to care for old and injured soldiers. Today it’s the familiar home of the red coated Chelsea Pensioners, all of whom served in the British Army. These are typically army veterans who are over 65 years old, with no dependents, who give up their war and army pensions on entry. The hospital is a stimulating place to live, but it’s also one in need of modernisation and building work, and a campaign was started in 2004 to raise funds for this.
One of the 2009 projects for the Chelsea Pensioners Appeal is ‘A Salute To Cooking’, a book that is sure to enchant and entertain you, right from the front cover, which has been designed by satirical cartoonist Gerald Scarfe. Following on from the front cover and a foreword by HRH The Prince of Wales, there are over 100 recipes, to suit every level of cooking ability, including contributions from a selection of music stars!
Everyone can learn something from this book, although I’d like to think we’d do rather better than James Blunt, whose recipe for a Pizza Supper basically involves a telephone and a takeaway menu! Aside from the humorous contributions, there’s also a Bouillabaise from Pink Floyd drummer Nick Mason, and Ratatouille from ‘forces sweetheart’ Katherine Jenkins, who does a lot of work for the charity. There are also contributions from singers Dame Vera Lynne, and Dame Kiri Te Kanawa.
The book is out now, and retails at £14.99. It’s being sold online via the Royal Hospital Chelsea website (www.chelsea-pensioners.org.uk) and will also be available at the Hospitals shop in London. If this sounds like your perfect gift idea, or you’d like to find out more about the Hospital, and The Chelsea Pensioners, then visit the website.