Category Archive Blog

BySwan Centre

Sun, shades and skincare!

There’s been a lot of nice weather recently and we’ve got our fingers crossed that we’ll see even more in the coming weeks. The sunshine’s been great: we’ve spent plenty of time in the garden, had some socially-distanced BBQs and topped up our staycation tans! However, all this sunshine has got us thinking about our skincare – are we doing enough? 

We’re used to lathering on the sunscreen as we sunbathe by the pool abroad, but at home, we tend to think makeup will protect us, particularly if the bottle says it contains SPF. 

Luckily, Boots UK have read our minds, and written a helpful article on whether SPF in cosmetics protects our skin. To make things easier, we’ve picked out some key points from the article which are worth remembering:

  • You need SPF protection all year round, even when taking a stroll in November!
  • Just because you’re not sweating, doesn’t mean the sun’s not causing damage.

  • The amount of SPF added to makeup is not enough to protect us completely, it is simply there as added protection. That means you need to wear sunscreen too!
  • Also, the SPF in make-up isn’t as long lasting as sunscreen.

The good news is however, if you don’t like wearing sunscreen in winter, there are cosmetics which are specifically designed with skincare in mind and you can find them all at Boots! Here’s a quick look at a few:

Nip + Fab Post-Glycolic Fix Moisturiser

This lightweight, oil-free cream contains SPF30 and witch hazel to help soothe the skin after exfoliation.

Boots L;ft Good Morning SPF15 Day Moisturising Cream

This little pot of goodness helps make skin appear firmer and contains SPF15 to prep your skin for the day ahead.

Olay Regenerist Whip Light As Air Moisturiser SPF30

It’s light as air, has a matte finish and contains SPF30 and SolarSheer Technology.

To find out about more protective cosmetics, or to read the full article by Boots, click here

P.S. When that sunshine comes back this summer, don’t forget to lather on that sunscreen!

Boots brand logo

BySwan Centre

How to make blueberry ice lollies

Kids will love this all-natural blueberry ice lolly recipe, especially as they colour your tongue! They’re perfect for a summer holiday play date.

READY IN: 10 minutes, plus freezing

COOKING TIME: 0 minutes

PREP TIME: 10 minutes

MAKES: 10 ice lollies


  • 625g fresh blueberries
  • 1 lime, juiced


  • Blitz the blueberry and lime juice with 75ml cold water in a blender until smooth.
  • Fill a 10-hole-lollipop mould with the blueberry mixture. If your mould has a stick holder, add the sticks now. Otherwise, transfer the mould to the freezer, then remove after 20 minutes and add the sticks then. Leave to completely freeze overnight
  • When ready to eat, remove the ice lollies from the freezer and serve. If they are hard to get out, very briefly run under hot water to loosen.


BySwan Centre

Safe shopping at Swan Centre

As more of our shops open their doors we want to remind you that your safety and well-being continue to be our top priority.  So, when the time is right, we are ready when you are.

As part of Swan Centre’s ongoing commitment to health and safety procedures, we’ve taken several precautionary measures to prevent the spread of the virus such as an increased frequency of cleaning regimes, especially at ‘touch points’ such as door handles, toilets and hard surfaces.

We continue to take daily advice from the relevant authorities and will update customers with any further developments. Everyone who works here has been thoroughly briefed on the steps to take to best keep themselves and customers protected, and we advise all our customers to follow the guidance issued by the Government, its Chief Medical Officer and Public Health England which you can see here

When visiting Swan Centre, it may look a little different from normal. There will be new rules to adhere to, but don’t worry. We have put together some FAQs for you to read before visiting the centre so that you know what to expect.


Q: Is Swan Centre open?

A: Yes, Swan Centre is open Monday – Saturday | 9.00am – 5.30pm | Sunday | 10.00am – 4.00pm


Q: What is open at Swan Centre?

A: Please keep an eye on our website for details of the stores that are open as this will change regularly in line with government regulations and retailers’ own policies.


Q: Are all entrances in the centre open?

A: Yes. All entrances are open, but we encourage all our customers to stay at least 2m apart.


Q: Is social distancing in place in the centre?

A: Yes. Please make sure you keep 2m away from other shoppers while visiting Swan Centre. There will be a queuing system in place for shops. If possible come early or late to avoid the busy periods.


Q: Is the car park open?

A: Yes. Our car park is currently free of charge. In busy periods, please use the stairway out of the car park near the Sainsbury’s lifts. At the bottom on the staircase turn left and this will lead you back into the centre.


Q: Are the toilets open? 

A:  No. The public toilets are closed at the moment to ensure social distancing rules can be adhered to. However Sainsbury’s toilets are open and we expect to have our public toilets in operation again when the majority of shops reopen in June.


Q: Is the public seating still available at the moment?

A: The benches in the open are in use, but limited to one household at a time.


Q: Have you increased cleaning at Swan Centre?

A: Yes. We have a new cleaning regime that ensures that the centre is regularly sanitised.


Q: Am I required to wear a face mask when visiting Swan Centre?

A: In accordance with government guidelines, we strongly suggest that you wear a face mask or face covering when visiting Swan Centre.


Q: Can I shop with my family? 

A: If you need to shop with other members of your household, you can do so. However, in a bid to reduce the spread of coronavirus and to enable social distancing to take place, it is advisable that, when possible, you shop alone.


Q: Are the lifts still in use? 

A: Yes. The lifts are in use. Please only use them on your own or with members of your household and prioritise elderly and disabled riders first. In busy periods, please use the stairway out of the car park near the Sainsbury’s lifts.


For the most up to date information on our individual shops and steps we are taking please visit our Facebook page >>

BySwan Centre

West African-style jollof rice with chicken

Everyone has their version of this popular West African dish, so here’s ours. It’s filled with punchy, vibrant flavours and complements the equally spicy baked chicken perfectly.

READY IN: 1 hour

COOKING TIME: 50 minutes

PREP TIME: 10 minutes



  • 250g long grain rice
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 400g chopped tomatoes
  • 1 red pepper
  • 1 scotch bonnet chilli
  • 1 onion
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • A couple of sprigs of Fresh thyme + a few extra to serve
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 540g chicken legs and thighs


  • Parboil the rice with 500ml of the chicken stock for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat; the rice will still be slightly hard.
  • Blend the pepper, onion, tomatoes and scotch bonnet to a smooth paste.
  • Pre-heat the oven at 190°C/fan 170°C/gas mark 5.
  • Heat the oil, and add the paste along with the curry powder, leaves from the thyme sprigs and bay leaves. Cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes.
  • Put the chicken pieces on a tray with a drizzle of oil and a spoonful of the sauce you just made for each piece of chicken. Bake in the oven for 35 minutes.
  • Add the parboiled rice to the sauce with the rest of the stock. Cover and cook for a further 15 minutes. Give it a stir after 10 minutes and add more stock if it feels sticky.
  • Once the chicken has cooked, add to the rice to serve up with some more of the fresh thyme.


BySwan Centre

FREE Postcard Service

“Kindness is spreading sunshine into other people’s lives regardless of the weather”

To spread kindness around Surrey during Mental Health Awareness Week, we have set up a FREE postcard service. We have partnered with our charity of the year Mary Frances Trust to give our customers a postcard service to help raise awareness about Mental Health by sending a ‘virtual hug’ and to help make people smile through this tough time.

Postcards are FREE of charge, however we ask you kindly for a small donation to Mary Frances Trust to help them continue to support adults in Surrey with their mental health and emotional wellbeing.


Thinking of you postcard Socially distant hug postcard Thinking of you postcard Stay safe, eat cake postcard

Each May, the Mental Health Foundation chooses a theme dedicated to Mental Health Awareness Week. This year, the theme is “Kindness” – celebrating the thousands of acts of kindness that have been made in society. The aim if to bring health organisations and members of the public together to help shed a light on the importance of looking after your mental health.

Choose from one of our kindness postca

rds, personalise your message, choose whether you want it sent via email or in the post and we will make sure your family or friends, receive your message, completely FREE of charge!

Don’t forget to spread the news by using the hashtag #SmileWithUs on social media.