Village Life masthead
Magazine archive

Letters from Issue No 22


Yes, the Editors have been receiving letters, lots of them, but we always seem to have too many stories to tell and too many photographs to share, and too few pages to publish all of them. We would like to thank the many people who have written and phoned. Excerpts from letters:


The top heritage publication in SA

As a person who has been intimately involved for more than thirty years with heritage conservation in particular and South Africa’s three-dimensional cultural, historical and architectural heritage in general, I feel myself qualified to express my appreciation and even excitement with the appearance of Village Life as a relatively new publication. It has already found a special niche in the competitive magazine industry.

Ever since receiving (and enjoying) my first copy of this high quality glossy magazine I have been impressed by its photographs and other illustrations, as well as its contents and layout. Village Life furthermore seems to find a good balance between high academic standards on the one hand and stimulating reading matter on the other hand.

I would like to go as far as stating that Village Life has already become the top heritage publication in the country!  It has indeed taken the place and filled gaps left by former magazines such as South African Panorama, Antiques in South Africa and Africana Notes and News.

Village Life has of course also shown that in today’s technological age – and with globalisation – it can be published in Stanford – a former forgotten corner in South Africa. I am therefore optimistic that this top publication will indeed go from strength to strength and become a popular publication with a well-deserved countrywide circulation.


George Hofmeyr, Somerset West

(former Director, National Monuments Council)


A surprise in Switzerland

I was fortunate enough to pick up one of your magazines off the coffee table of a South African friend here in Switzerland yesterday. What a joy! What a pleasure! Congratulations on an excellent publication. May you grow from strength to strength!

 It was also a pleasure to phone my parents in Hermanus this morning and tell them that I came across the magazine: “But of course, we always buy it, dear.” Even so it is a pleasure to subscribe to the magazine for them.

 Keep up the excellent work!


Gretha Wocke, Rüti, Switzerland


Another one off to England

During a doctor’s appointment I found one of your magazines on their coffee table. What a pleasure!!!

Please send me the subscription details and also if it is possible to buy a few of the back copies as my family are very enthusiastic and want to visit and learn about all the beautiful towns and villages in the Western Cape.

I also want to send your magazine to relatives in England!


Susan Holdsworth, Tokai, Cape Town


Recipe used in Guatemala

While we were home in Cape Agulhas I managed to beg my neighbour’s copy of Village Life off her and bought one of the new issues too to bring back here so that I could show the community we are temporarily residing in what “home” looks like. It might interest you to know your issues were read by Mexicans, Guatemalans, Colombians, Peruvians, Canadians and Hondurans. My Mexican neighbour was so taken with it she took it home to her mother in Chihuahua with my inept Spanish translations.

Another little story is that here in Guatemala City one of our excellent restaurants uses a recipe I copied out of a Village Life in (I think) 2005. I cannot remember which issue but I just call it “Agulhas pastry” as this is how I stored it in one of my computer files for referencing. My friend has a son who is a chef, who studied and qualified in Seville, Spain. I served this pastry on a chicken thyme and lemon zested pie for a dinner party and it was a great hit and has since been adapted for gluten-allergic people on the menu using maseca which here is maize flour. The original recipe from VL is done with flour, baking powder, yoghurt or milk and one egg. Here they also put parmesan cheese in the flour and some chopped chives. The dish is called El pastel del pollo con sabores del sur – chicken pie with flavours from the South. Interessant né en baie lekker!


Caren Haikney, Guatemala City


Proudly among the best on my coffee table

Hailing from the County of Hertfordshire in the U.K. where I spent most of my youth, I found your magazine Village Life both refreshing and informative.

For so long now, rural living has been sadly neglected by our media and I am delighted to see that someone has had the courage and tenacity in restoring this vibrant part of South African life to its rightful place.

Your front cover presentation was colourfully unique, presenting a tempting invitation to turn the page and enter the fascinating world of Village Life. As a fellow writer I commend your easy to read style. Descriptive and well illustrated, each article was a worthwhile read. Superb colour photography also played an important role in making the magazine a delight.

I am proud to have Village Life sitting among the copies of Tatler and London Illustrated on my coffee table.


Geoffrey Kennell, Nelspruit


Inspiration for city dwellers

As a regular reader of your journal, I wish to commend you on producing an excellent publication that fills a definite niche. A high standard of journalism is combined with charming and informative articles and photographs. Several of them engender a sense of nostalgia for the cultural and architectural heritage of our villages and must undoubtedly inspire many city dwellers to move to the country.


André Rabie, Betty’s Bay


Back to Contents Village Life No 22


© Copyright 2003–2019 Village Life