In print August 2019 – grab your copy today

Crazy season in Edinburgh has arrived. After our summer holiday in July we’re all back fighting fit for our busiest month of the year. The Festival. When the children were little the babysitting bill would leave me nearly broken, as teenagers the entertainment allowance can do more damage so the trick is a three line whip and my three get roped in. We slowly gear them up over the treats on the beach a few weeks earlier and then there is the please mummy don’t let me work as if Oliver Twist had it easy in comparison. But when they get stuck in, get to know the teams, they love it. They also love the pay cheque just as much at the end of the month. It’s only for a couple of weeks, honest it’s not child cruelty.

No 1 son will be up at Cannonball with his father on hosting duty. Cannonball House is one of the oldest buildings on the Royal Mile, dating back to the early 17th century with view, outwith the Edinburgh Tattoo Season, looking directly onto Edinburgh Castle. It’s no wonder this three story building arranged incredibly over four floors has its own ghost. She’s called Alice. Very friendly and very happy that we’re in the building looking after her home. (yes some of the team have had encounters – all very spooky but very Old Town). As host, you can track 10,000 – 15,000 steps in a shift. So not only does this one get paid he gets a free workout and membership to the Cannonball gym in the running up and down the stairs.

No 2 daughter will be with Executive chef Suzanne baking. We’ll go through over 500 scones and over 1000 pieces of free shortbread for our coffees a day at The Scottish Cafe so any help to cut out scones and shortbread is welcome.

The baby, who is now 13, will be in the Events office with Stephanie and the team preparing all the stationary for any of Tattoo packages or nipping down to help Alina polish cutlery at Contini George Street.

Our family business is made up not just of Victor and I; all the knowledge we’ve been handed down by our parents; our children but our team who are our family and who look after our children as if they are part of their family. We do really love them all. So this article is a massive thank you to everyone in hospitality that’s smiling through the crowds to make sure our visitors have wonderful memories of their visit to Edinburgh in the Festival and thank you to my team for looking after our customers and my babies in the process. One team one dream, one family business.

Banana and Currant Bread

There will be very little time to cook never mind eat over August but the girls make this all the time. It’s super easy and it’s low sugar and can be eaten morning, noon or night. So whenever their shift is finished cake can be served at home. Schools are back at the end of August too and this is a great bake to have as a slice for a breaktime morning snack.

The currents make this lovely and moist. Make sure your bananas are ripe otherwise the cake won’t be as moist as it should be. This is also very low in sugar compared to similar gingerbread or carrot cake recipes so it gets extra points from me.


110g unsalted butter, at room temperature
110g light brown sugar
2 free range eggs
3 large ripe bananas
225g self raising flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 flat teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
150g currents
Pinch of salt

2lb lined loaf tin
Oven gas mark 3


  1. Cream the butter, sugar and banana in a food processor
  2. Slowly add the flour, eggs, bicarbonate, cinnamon and salt
  3. Finally fold in the currents
  4. Bake for 35 until cooked
  5. Cool on a wire and enjoy on its own or with some butter for a savoury touch
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