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OM Plymouth 105 October ‘17



Plymouth & South Hams Leading Lifestyle Magazine

DCL Vehicle Hire

Whether you are a domestic or commercial client, Rupert Wills at DCL has got you covered

H.M Williams

A year after our first visit, we catch up with Ashley Smith to see how the business is doing

G P Service

Geoff & Carolyn at G P Service are going from strength to strength!

!n N I W ee w o l m al

H ts fro trea Janners Jelly

Breast Cancer Awareness Month this year, Breast Cancer Care is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Pink Ribbon

Plymouth’s Haunted History Discover the local tales of spooks and scares!

Home + Pets + Leisure & Events +Plymouth Eating &01752 Drinking Law & Finance + Motoring 02 October 2017 Call OM 691007+ Beauty +www.omplymouthmagazine.

02 October 2017

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Call OM Plymouth 01752 691007 Creative Director Myles Lockwood Editor Libbi Chapple Accounts Emma-Jane Corry Sales Managers Myles Lockwood Emily Trace Graphic Design Libbi Chapple BA (Hons) Tom Coles BA (Hons) Editorial Libbi Chapple Photography Tom Coles Sister Magazine The Plympton Community Magazine OM Plymouth is a proud sponsor of Gables Farm Dogs & Cats Home

Editor's Note... October means we are well and truly into Autumn. Jumper weather, thick fluffy scarves and countless hot chocolates await! Halloween is a tradition that has been celebrated in the UK for over 100 years, and given Plymouth’s rich history, we have no shortage of spooky tales right on our doorstep. Turn to page 24 to find out more. October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, and this year is the 25th Anniversary of the Pink Ribbon. I spoke to Sue Hobbs, Chair of the Primrose Foundation to find out about the local services on offer for the people of Plymouth. You can read more about this on pages 16 and 17. As usual, we have some inspiring business profiles for you to read in this issue. We catch up with Geoff and Carolyn at G P Services, and we also speak to Ashley at H.M Williams to see how their recent move to bigger and better premises is treating them! Last but definitely not least, we meet Rupert Wills at DCL Vehicle Hire to talk about the last six years of his impressive business growth. Look out for our reader response prize- this month you could be in with a chance of winning 2kg of sweets from Jelly Janners!

Libbi Chapple - Editor

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Trade Mark and © Copyright OM Plymouth Magazine 2017. All rights reserved. Nothing in this magazine may be reproduced in whole or in part without the expressed written permission of the publisher. We have done our utmost to ensure that all the content is correct and accurate at the time of print, but we emphasise that Oracle Publications accepts no responsibility for any mistakes or omissions in this publication. All opinions expressed in the Plymouth Oracle magazine are that of the individual contributor and are not always shared by the publication.

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It’s really satisfying to know we’re making a differen ce

CONTENTS October 2017

08 12


Geoff and Caroly n tell us that their customers come first, “we really care about

We keep our price s as competitiv e as we can, give a vast amount of free help and advice, and are thrilled that so many of our local customers have gone on to become our frien ds too.


“We’re quite happy to give advice over the phone rather than always come out. We’d sooner be helpful, and we do that

Business Profile: G P Service

National Marine Aquarium


Breast Cancer Awareness Month

“It’s more of a lifesty le ou nature to us to put the bo sometimes, instea d of wa fix the coffee mach ines a Geoff admits. The varied means that Caroly n is abl home and look after their the daytime, and Geoff alw school run.

“What we do is our passion, wouldn’t be me if I wasn’t wa with a screwdriver in my poc way of life,” Geoff tells It’s the genuine passi us, th on for th seems to have playe d such a in the success of GP Service incredibly impor tant to this fa

VSF Garage Repairs

Specialists in the safe removal and replacement of corrugated asbestos fibre roofing

over Facebook as well are asked. Even if we a they will still remem ber problem that might hap explains. Geoff will trav Saltash, Tavistock and to repair appliances, a bu balance is impor tant to h

Community is impor tant to Carolyn, and they tell us tha proud to be giving donation sponsorships to local comm charities and footba ll teams finger on the pulse rather ea we’re part of the community

A year after our first visit, we catch up with Geoff and Carolyn at G P Service


Call Geoff and Caro

lyn on:01752 6965 73 | Email: gpse Visit: www.gpservic k



The aquarium have exciting doodle days events on in the October Half Term

This year marks the 25th Anniversary of the Pink Ribbon


Plymouth Pavilions


Business Profile: DCL Vehicle Hire


”The highlight so far has been saving countless coffee -makers from being sent on a slow boat to China for destru ction, with all the waste d energy and seamiles involved. I feel such pride about that, and the comp anies are delighted too. One humble chap from Plymo uth has helped them make a genuine and significant differe nce to their corpo rate social responsibili ty and sustainabil ity programmes”.

ervice only charge a very low call out fee and pride themselves on being completely honest and upfron t about their costs and services. Because Carolyn has learnt so much about the trade from her husband, she’s able to diagnose a lot of problems over the phone and is a friend ly, reassuring voice for customers who call with enquiries.

mer for less than it would have cost the suppl ier to provide a replacement, every one’s a winner – the customer, becau se the appliance is fixed, the supplier, because it’s saved money, and the retaile r, because it’s kept the customer happy and demonstrated its commitment to sustainability and corporate social responsibility.”

First aid training £140

3 day course, included both theory and practical sessions

SIA training £180

is 4 day course, SIA qualification required for door supervisors

aid • SIA training First aid training • Paediatric first handling training & more Spectator safety courses • Manual courses and more visit For detailed information on these us a call. our website or give


07848 946146

See what exciting events Pavilions have for us this month

Buying or selling your home?

Rupert Wills has had an impressive 6 years of business growth!

Platinum Breaks

Request your 2018 brochure now! premium coach holidays, Platinum breaks going the extra mile


Discover a Haunted History


Seasonal Seedlings


Halloween in Plymouth


Reader Response


Plymouth Chiropractic Clinic


Richardsons Legal


Business Profile: H.M Williams


Film Guide

Kitsons can help you with all you Conveyancing neer ds!

35 13

Plymouth has a rich history, find out some of the spooky tales from right on our doorstep

Tel: 01752 603040 Email: advice@kitson website: www.kits k

Personal • Property Conveyancin g • Employment Law • Family & Divorce • Wills, Trusts & Probat e

• Powers of Attorney • Litigation & Disput e Resolution • Tax Planning • Professional Neglig ence

Business • Commercial Proper ty • Employment Law • Insolvency • Debt Recovery

• Litigation & Disput e Resolution • Property Litigation • Landlord & Tenant • Sales, Mergers & Acquis itions • Professional Neglig ence

Kitsons LLP, Ashle igh Way,


Langage Business Park, Plympton, PL7 5JX

20ft Containers from £99 p/m inc. VAT

Get your winter crops ready with these handy gardening tips

Unsure of what to do this Halloween? Our events guide has you sorted!

Your chance to win 2kg of pick n mix sweets from popular Facebook company Jelly Janners

Jon Cook, Doctor of Chiropractic, gives advice on posture and breaking your habits

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Will your children inherit your home? A home protection trust makes sure they do.

A year after our first visit we catch up with Ashley at H M Williams to see how his business is doing

Your guide to the films hitting the cinemas this month.

t: 01752 22 44 55 e: Please mention OM Magazine when responding to adverts

October 2017 07


BUSINESS PROFILE A year after our first visit, we catch up with Geoff and Carolyn, owners of G P Service, about their appliance-repair business and its success. This “proper husband-and-wife business” is now in its eleventh year, and there is no end to the steady stream of coffee machines, vacuum cleaners and other appliances coming through their door.

Geoff is the face of the business, but he can’t praise Carolyn enough for the hard work she puts in every day while bringing up three children. He explains how, “Carolyn is a partner in the business and probably does more than me, if I’m honest!” Geoff Pithouse might not sport a Superman logo or even chair conferences at the United Nations, but he’s certainly doing his bit to save the planet. G P Service is helping major UK retailers challenge our throwaway society by repairing faulty appliances instead of shipping them to china for scrapping. “The retailer wanted its suppliers to repair the appliances whenever possible, but they couldn’t find anyone to do the work economically,” he says. Geoff explains, “The suppliers had disbanded most of their own service teams to cut costs, and we’re so used to throwing things away that hardly anyone has the skills and

experience to carry out professional repairs to the standards the retailers demand.” That makes Geoff and his business, G P Service, something of a rare breed – but one that seems to be heading for a renaissance rather than extinction.

Our old habit of simply throwing a faulty appliance away and buying a new one has become unsustainable in itself. Customers are becoming very vocal about this, and the big retailers are beginning to listen.


P Service is owned and run by husband and wife team, Geoff and Carolyn from Woolwell, where they offer cost-effective appliance repairs. In the 11 years since the business started they have seen their work grow as they’ve been taken on as Authorised Service Agents by some huge, well-known brands.

G P Service won ‘Best Small Business’ in The Woolwell Centre Local Business & Community Awards 2016

“That’s why the retail chain we’re working with took the initiative and put pressure on its suppliers to get the appliances fixed instead.” Geoff says the economics work out well for everyone involved when the appliances are high-value items. Geoff and Carolyn have experience in

repairing a whole range of appliances, including washing machines, cookers, food processors, vacuum cleaners, Duailit toasters and even GHD hair straighteners. Geoff can also repair night storage heaters. Coffee machines are Carolyn’s speciality, and these arrive to G P Service from across the country. Carolyn fixes between 80 and 100 machines in one month! This involves diagnosis, sourcing parts and repairing the fault, all before getting the product back to the customer. With so many homes now owning a coffee machine, their expertise is being called for more often.

They’re Authorised Service Agents for brands including Kenwood, Delonghi, Magimix, Bissell, AEG, Zanussi and Electrolux, so when a product goes wrong, customers are directed straight to G P Service.

Geoff explains the ins and outs of the process; “If the retailer gives the

08 October 2017

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“But if the appliance can be sent to us by courier for repair then couriered back to the customer for less than it would have cost the supplier to provide a replacement, everyone’s a winner – the customer, because the appliance is fixed, the supplier, because it’s saved money, and the retailer, because it’s kept the customer happy and demonstrated its commitment to sustainability and corporate social responsibility.”

It’s really satisfying to know we’re making a difference

”The highlight so far has been saving countless coffee-makers from being sent on a slow boat to China for destruction, with all the wasted energy and seamiles involved. I feel such pride about that, and the companies are delighted too. One humble chap from Plymouth has helped them make a genuine and significant difference to their corporate social responsibility and sustainability programmes”. Geoff and Carolyn tell us that their customers come first, “we really care about

our customers and realise that, without them, we’d never have had a business in the first place”. G P Service only charge a very low call out fee and pride themselves on being completely honest and upfront about their costs and services. Because Carolyn has learnt so much about the trade from her husband, she’s able to diagnose a lot of problems over the phone and is a friendly, reassuring voice for customers who call with enquiries.

customer a refund, the supplier usually picks up the tab. And if the supplier provides a new appliance as a replacement, that costs it a lot of money, too.

Great Blue Hole, Belize

We keep our prices as competitive as we can, give a vast amount of free help and advice, and are thrilled that so many of our local customers have gone on to become our friends too.

“We’re quite happy to give advice over the phone rather than always come out. We’d sooner be helpful, and we do that

over Facebook as well when questions are asked. Even if we are unable to repair they will still remember us for another problem that might happen,” Geoff explains. Geoff will travel in his van to Saltash, Tavistock and across Plymouth to repair appliances, but work-life balance is important to him. “It’s more of a lifestyle our job. It’s second nature to us to put the boys to bed and sometimes, instead of watching TV, we fix the coffee machines and vacuums!” Geoff admits. The varied work-load means that Carolyn is able to work at home and look after their youngest son in the daytime, and Geoff always does the school run. Community is important to Geoff and Carolyn, and they tell us that they are proud to be giving donations and sponsorships to local community groups, charities and football teams. “We keep our finger on the pulse rather easily because we’re part of the community we serve. “What we do is our passion, and it wouldn’t be me if I wasn’t walking around with a screwdriver in my pocket. It’s our way of life,” Geoff tells us, thoughtfully. It’s the genuine passion for the job which seems to have played such a huge part in the success of GP Service, which is so incredibly important to this family.

Call Geoff and Carolyn on: 01752 696573 | Email: Visit: Please mention OM Magazine when responding to adverts

October 2017 09


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How a house was reborn into a home for a growing family


ob Duffield and his family now live in this beautiful 19th century villa-style house – here’s his story of how they uncovered its best features and created a perfect home for them all. Please tell us a little bit about your family and your house: We moved to Cheltenham in the summer of 2013. We rented a modern duplex apartment and Frankie our son was born in June 2014. We always had an eye out for a place to buy but we took our time until we found the right place. This turned out to be Paxton Lodge – a Grade II, four-bed Regency town house, with a separate basement flat.

Was it a major refurbishment project? Definitely, we had to bring the house kicking and screaming into the 21st century. There were many species of carpet that had to go! The house needed substantial refurbishment. This included: • Bringing the basement flat back into the main house as our main kitchen and dining area • Transforming the galley kitchen on the ground floor into a play room • Swapping a bedroom for the main bathroom and vice versa • Stripping out the main bathroom & two en suite bathrooms • Refitting and retiling them. This house is so beautifully designed that we knew our efforts would be rewarded.

How important were the tiles and how/where did you source them? Tiles were key to our design thinking. We found Original Style online and then visited a local showroom.

Tell us about shopping for tiles at the Original Style Showroom – how would you rate your experience? Very highly. That’s why we want to tell our story. We got to know almost everyone in the store.

What advice would you give to other people who want to create tiled focal points in their homes? Get the Original Style brochures – they are colourful and informative. Then visit your local store where you’ll get a good sense of how they look in real life.

Visit the newly refurbished Original Style Showroom at 2 Lister Close, Newnham Industrial Estate, Plympton, PL7 4BA

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October 2017 11


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Could you give a rescue cat a home? Gables Farm has lots of cats and dogs of all ages, sizes, breeds and temperaments looking for new loving homes

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October 2017 13

Leisure & Events

On October 14th, a fundraising and awareness event called #WalkforFreedom will take place in hundreds of cities across 50 nations.


n Saturday 14th October, a global anti-trafficking organization called A21, will be hosting the 4th Annual Walk for Freedom in Plymouth.

The purpose of the walk is to raise awareness about the millions of men, women, and children who are still trapped in slavery today. By fundraising and rallying thousands of people around the cause, the belief is that this event will be the catalyst for the rescue and restorationof human beings who are being exploited as comedies. Walk For Freedom is distinctly recognised by it’s participants who are in single file lines, wearing black shirts and yelow bandanas across their mouths. You’ll see these lines in places all over the world- from in front of the Eiffel Tower in France, to along the Hollywood Walk of Fame in America.

The Plymouth walk will start and end at Mutley Baptist Church on Mutley Plain. All are welcome to join the walk it is free and you can register at or just turn up on the day. Registration starts at 10am the walk will set off at 10:30am. “We are utterly convinced that slavery can be eradicated in our lifetime. Walk For Freedom is definitely one of the most impacting things that we do at A21. It is a tangible, practical, and doable thing for every single person. All od us can put our feet on the pavement and use our steps to make a difference” -Christine Caine- A21’s Founder

More information about the Walk, and A21 can be found on the website: and 14 October 2017

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October 2017 15




October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month and this year, Breast Cancer Care is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the pink ribbon, a powerful symbol for millions of people affected by the disease.

SCREENING AND TREATMENT The first step to acknowledging an abnormality is making an appointment to see your GP, who will then carry out a breast examination and investigate any concerns you may have. If you are showing any of the signs previously mentioned, it is likely that your GP will then refer you to your local clinic for a screening. The Primrose Centre, located in Derriford Hospital is the South West’s leading centre for breast care. You should wait no longer than 2 weeks for your appointment, and once there, you usually have to fill out a short questionnaire about your family history, lifestyle habits etc. If it is your first time visiting the clinic then you have every right to feel anxious! But remember than the majority of cases are not breast cancer. A qualified professional will once again examine both of your breasts. In some cases- this is all that is needed, however the majority of people then go on to have either a mammogram, ultrasound or core biopsy to further determine the cause of the symptoms. Your test results will usually be given on the same day. Heightened awareness, better education, encouragement for self examination, early diagnosis, research and development and improved treatment methods are fundamental factors in beating breast cancer.


AN OVERVIEW Breast cancer starts when cells in the breast begin to divide and grow in an abnormal way. It’s caused by a combination of lots of different factors, many of which are beyond our control.

drop in mortality rate since the 1970’s

Breast cancer is not one single disease – there are several types of breast cancer. It can be diagnosed at different stages and can grow at different rates. This means that people can have different treatments, depending on what will work best for them. Every year nearly 58,000 people are diagnosed with breast cancer in the UK, that’s the equivalent of one person every 10 minutes. Breast cancer is the most common cause of death from cancer in women in the UK, with around 11,500 people dying from breast cancer every year. Breast cancer also affects men, but it’s rare – around 400 men are diagnosed each year.

THINGS TO LOOK OUT FOR There are a number of great infographics out there showing the signs and symptoms of breast cancer, all of which are simple and informative ways to get the message across. It is important to remember that not all symptoms mean that you have breast cancer- but it is extremely important to tell your doctor if the symptoms do not go away so it can be investigated. Common symptoms include a change in size or shape, a lump or area that feels thicker than the rest of the breast, a change in skin texture such as puckering or dimpling (like the skin of an orange), redness or rash on the skin or around the nipple, your nipple has become inverted (pulled in),liquid (sometimes called discharge) that comes from the nipple without squeezing, constant pain in your breast or your armpit, a swelling in your armpit or around your collarbone.

16 October 2017

1 in 8 women in the UK are affected




men are affected in the UK

most common form of cancer diagnosed in the UK since 1997

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echnology changes all the time; and at the Primrose Centre, we are fortunate to have access locally to state of the art equipment as well as having highly skilled, well-trained and dedicated breast care teams. These teams are multi-disciplinary with a shared passion for excellence in patient care.

The Primrose Foundation is Plymouth’s only dedicated breast care charity and has now raised well over £1 million since the original appeal was launched in 1995. Our Editor, Libbi speaks to Sue Hobbs; Chair and Trustee, to outline the foundations history, and acknowlege how the dedication of the foundation itself; and the incredible number of supporters has made a significant difference to breast care in the South West. The Primrose Appeal was established locally as a registered charity at that time in response to the NHS strategic direction to establish one ‘stop clinics’ for women (and men) who were referred for breast screening or who had symptomatic breast problems and required a specialist clinic appointment. The then Regional Health Authority had already committed £500k to this project at Derriford Hospital, Plymouth and the Primrose Appeal undertook to match fund this amount in order to quickly establish a facility at Derriford Hospital. Following a truly amazing fundraising campaign, The Primrose Centre opened to the public in 2001. The bulk of the money raised by the public (£500,000), was spent on building the unit. The next largest costs were spent on equipment. The Primrose Centre has access to the some of the best technology available for the diagnosis, treatment and care of breast cancer patients in Devon After the success of the appeal it was apparent that there was a great deal of support and enthusiasm to convert the appeal into a Foundation. This was considered to be the right vehicle to support the team at The Primrose Centre with the overarching aims of maintaining the quality of services offered, and by supporting new initiatives and treatments, including the training and education of staff, to enable the Primrose Centre to maintain its position at the forefront of breast care services locally.

The lanes and hedgerows throughout Devon and Cornwall are full of primroses, and as they are synonymous with new life after the darkness of winter, we felt this flower and name was a perfect fit.

Help make great things happen

The NHS manages a national breast-screening programme whereby every woman between the ages of 47 and 73 years are invited to attend for a mammogram every three years. Often these X-Rays are performed in mobile vans, often in car parks, or static venues, e.g. the Guildhall in Plymouth. In addition, other facilities such as the Primrose Centre offer mammography screening as well as a range of other outpatient based investigations, treatments and support from specialist staff and onward referral. If a patient, male or female, attends a GP appointment with a concern about a possible breast condition he or she can expect to be seen by a specialist within two weeks. This is the maximum allowed by NHS England.

The Primrose Centre is a dedicated facility situated on Level 7 at Derriford Hospital. Women and men attending for an appointment, or accompanying a relative or friend, are welcomed and hopefully put at ease by kind and caring staff.

The waiting room is pleasant and everyone from the receptionists to the radiologists are committed to providing expertise, help and support at what is truly an anxious and difficult time.

The generosity and stamina of those who support us never fails to amaze and humble. From bungee jumps, marathons, fashion shows, sky dives, footie matches, Rotary and Golf club named charities, as well as local business support and our own yearly and now famous in-house ‘Bake-Off’ organized by one of our cake loving radiologists.

This year we were able, with your help, to support the appointment of an additional Breast Care Nurse Specialist for two years.

We also regularly fund equipment as well as educational programmes for staff. We also remember that often it’s the little things that count to people who come to the Centre. Making sure that the environment they enter is calm, clean and welcoming is as important as the variety of equipment and treatments available. Over the last 22 years the astounding amount of money raised and given to the charity has allowed the Primrose Breast Care Centre to become a hub for breast cancer knowledge, innovation and care in the region. It is important for our supporters to know that the money they raise for us is being spent wisely and is going direct to help those being treated and supported at the centre. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our fundraisers, volunteers, staff and supporters for their continued hard work, enthusiasm and energy With your help we are determined to build on our joint achievements and remain at the forefront of treatment, care and support, making a significant difference to the future of breast care in the South West.

- Sue Hobbs, Chair of The Primrose Foundation

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October 2017 17

18 October 2017

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October 2017 19

BUSINESS PROFILE The DCL Group consists of Devon Couriers, DCL Vehicle Hire, and most recently, Plymouth Taxi Van. Rupert Wills, the owner, originally set up his business from home in 2011. Today we visit him at his 2,500 sq ft office to talk about the last 6 years of his inspiring business growth.

“It’s fairly well known that there is a national shortage of HGV drivers, and it sounds cliché but I really enjoyed driving! So I thought if I get into that then I’d never be out of work”. After a short stint working as a delivery driver for Wiseman Dairies, and being employed by Smiths at the age of 21; Rupert then moved on to become a courier driver for UPS in Bodmin. “I knocked the lorry driving on the head, and focussed on the van deliveries for the best part of a year”. Rupert then moved back to Plymouth in 2007 and joined forces with a friend to form the beginnings of Rupert’s first company- Logistics Direct. They traded from home for a year; however Rupert tells us they weren’t very popular with the neighbours! “There were a lot of transit vans outside”. This sparked the move to bigger and better premises.

Through organic growth and the right mindset, the fleet increased from 6 to 35. I started to think about different directions other than just courier services

The business moved to its current location in Lee Mill last summer, after outgrowing its previous office in Valley Road, Plympton. “When I wanted to expand the business, I realised that I needed facilities to park and valet the fleet, we needed somewhere self contained”. Whether you’re a commercial or domestic customer, Rupert had made sure they offer a service for everyone. DCL Vehicle Hire was formed at the end of 2016, and offers to hire a range of vehicles out at extremely competitive prices. “What makes us different from the national companies is the fact we offer a 24 hour rental period”. Rupert explains. “If someone came in at 9am we wouldn’t expect it back later that daythey would have it until 9am the following day”.

20 October 2017

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A self drive Ford transit van can be hired from £49 a day, £69 for a weekend from Friday evening to Monday morning, and for larger jobs; the Luton Van can be rented at £99 for a weekend with the current special deal. This price includes VAT, insurance and breakdown cover

Going back to the beginning, Rupert tells us how in 2002, he got a job working for Royal Mail. “I was there for 4 years. I started off in data entry and worked my way up to become work area manager”. At the end of 2005, Rupert left the company, after deciding to pursue a HGV course he took whilst employed there.

Unfortunately, Rupert tells us that after a divide of interests, himself and his business partner decided to go their separate ways. This is the point that Logistics Direct was shut down and Devon Couriers came into being. Rupert tells us that the business essentially had a head start- “We already had 6 vans, a few contracts and a couple of drivers. I worked on expanding that and built it from there really”.


ix years ago, Rupert Wills set up Devon Couriers from his home. Fast forward to today, he is the owner of a fleet of over 50 vehicles, and running multiple services under one roof.

DCL is a member of Active Fleet Solutions, meaning that the customer is covered in the event of a breakdown or accident. “Each of our vans has a sticker in the windscreen, so if a customer is involved in an incident they call the number and the call handler will take down any details”. Rupert explains that their flexible opening times are what sets them apart from the national courier and hire companies. “If someone needs something done outside normal trading hours, there are facilities put in place to offer that”. Rupert tells us that all of the

Great Blue Hole, Belize

- DCL VEHICLE HIRE office phones are diverted to mobiles, so every call will be picked up. “It all comes down to giving the customer the service they expect, our hours are user friendly”.

All hire vehicles are less than a year old, and get a full valet between rentals. They’re all clean and comfortable

It’s not just the rental side of the business that is booming. Rupert tells us that the biggest part of Devon Couriers’ success is the multi drop aspect. “We supply liveried drivers and vehicles to companies such as UK Mail and Tuffnell’s. It’s hard work! You’re looking at doing 60-70 jobs a day and finding the calibre of driver that can do that is getting harder and harder”.

Rupert’s newest venture, Plymouth Taxi van; is the latest part of the business to be making an impact. He tells us that it

is as easy as booking a taxi, hence the catchy name. Customers can call up, and a van will get to them within the hour or at a specified time to help them deliver or collect. The Taxi Van is charged at a flat rate of £25, and this covers all of Plymouth and the surrounding areas. “The only requirement is that the item/s can be loaded into the van in under 5 minutes, otherwise the rate will increase slightly; however in our experience 5 minutes is usually plenty of time!” Every delivery made by Plymouth Taxi Van is tracked via GPS, and every customer receives a notification of the ETA and another for confirmation of delivery. “I’m just trying to make a product that’s already out there in a way, but is easier and more accessible for the customer”. Looking to the future, Rupert is keen to expand on an already successful aspect of his business. “The vehicle Hire is my favourite part of the group if you like, so I’m looking forward to working on that”. Rupert also tells us he is looking to branch out into self storage solutions and vehicle sales. “We could potentially sell our fleet at 12 months old, so we would be offering well looked after, low mileage vehicles”. In regards to the self storage potential,

Rupert tells us that he would have to move to larger premises and he doesn’t want to rush the process. “The storage and vehicles sales would probably have to happen simultaneously. I want to get everything put in place and be ready before we potentially move, but that is the trajectory- that is where we want to be”. The DCL Vehicle Hire website is due a revamp in the near future, with the addition of online booking and online payments being taken. This will further expand the accessibility of the business. To conclude, we ask Rupert what he would say to someone looking to emulate his success. “It’s not all a bowl of cherries. It takes a lot of hard work, many hours of dedication and actually having resilience.

There have been times in the past where things have gotten difficult. Many voices that you give weight to will start to question you, and you are tempted to listen when times get tough- but it’s not always going to be like that. As one door closes another opens as long as you knock on it.

Another core product of Devon Couriers which is proving to be extremely popular is the same day UK Mainland service starting from just £30. “We are part of the UK’s largest national Courier network, which means we have instant access to over 30,000 vehicles in the UK at any given time”. Rupert tells us that this enables them to collect from anywhere in the country generally within 60 minutes.

If you believe in yourself and your product you will succeed. It may not be the first time, as I know. But you will”.

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DISCOVER A HAUNTED HISTORY The 31st of October will see a flurry of children and adults buying costumes, pumpkins and giant bags of sweets ready to enjoy the festivities surrounding Halloween. If you are looking for some frightening festive fun, why not explore some intriguing locations that boast ghostly activity right here in Plymouth.

Saltram House Saltram House is a grade I listed George the II era mansion house located in Plympton. It is one of Britain’s best preserved examples of an early Georgian house and retains much of its original décor and furnishings. This just sets it up for a whole host of paranormal happenings right?! According to local legend, Saltram House has long been haunted by the ghost of a kitchen maid who was once murdered there. Her presence is still around as a dark hooded figure who roams the corridors, floating through and melting into a solid wall that leads to the dining room, but never appearing on the other side.

Reel Cinema The Reel Cinema, previously known as the ABC cinema is located at Derry’s Cross. The building is one of only a handful of buildings that survived the Plymouth Blitz during the Second World War. The entire Derry’s Cross area is known to be paranormally active; and there is documentation stating that at least three burial grounds were located there. Screen 2 within the cinema is said to be the most haunted, with sightings of a full figured woman dressed in white; a particular seat is said to cause feelings of being watched and feeling of extreme sadness.

Black Friar’s Distillery This building is the oldest working gin distillery in all of England. World famous Plymouth Gin has been produced here since 1793 and the building dates back to the 14th century. There are said to be a few spirits here,

22 October 2017

not just the ones in bottles! Perhaps the most picked up paranormal activity is that of a women who was murdered in the Ladies restrooms. Some women have encountered a feeling of pure dread and uneasiness when entering the restrooms. There is also tales of a monk that wanders certain parts of the ancient site.

Elizabethan House The Elizabethan house dates from 1584 and is a restored captain’s dwelling. Even today it is not hard to imagine the likes of Sir Walter Raleigh, Drake and Captain Cook strolling down these narrow cobbled streets. The most famous spooky story is that of a well known archaeologist who had a paranormal experience in 1983. He had arrived early at the House to set up for a lecture, and was making his way up the winding staircase. As he was climbing, he heard a peculiar sound so rushed to find out where it was coming from. As he entered the room, he saw the childs cradle rocking side to side, with not a soul to be seen.This cradle is still there today. There have also been reports, even on the hottest day- well, as hot as we get in Plymouth; of certain parts of the building being icy cold. Spooky!

Royal William Yard Situated upon 16 acres the Royal William Yard’s main purpose was as a victualing (food and provisions) depot for the Royal Navy. Completed in 1835, Many individuals would have plied there trades here. With such a fascinating history, there’s no wonder this place is rife with spooky goings on. The Parade ground which has now been grassed over, once housed cattle to await their fate. On a number of occasions, mainly in the evenings people have heard the eerie sound of cattle hooves stomping upon cobbled stone. It is also said that within the vicinity of the Melville clock tower, people have felt an extreme oppressed feeling, and felt the need to leave. Tales of phantom music with no apparent source, ghostly apparitions and rushing feet ascending a staircase have all been reported.

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Kitty J’s Grave Back in the late 18th Century, an orphan baby was taken from a poor house in Newton Abbot. The little girl was named, as was custom, with a surname beginning with whatever letter the poor house had progressed too, in this case ‘J’. Later nicknamed Mary Jay, she spent her teenage years working as an apprentice on a farm just outside Manaton. It is said that on this farm is where Mary acquired her famous name of ‘Kitty’. Sadly, it wasn’t long before Kitty became pregnant, and she was cast out of the farm and labelled as a ‘slut’. Kitty knew all too well that if anyone found out she would never find work, so tragically Kitty J took the only other way out and was found hanging in one of the barns. The custom of the day was that any suicide could not be buried on consecrated ground, and so they were interred at crossroads, sometimes with a stake driven through their hearts. This was to be the fate of Kitty J, and she was buried at the intersection of a road and Moorland track. This place soon became known as ‘Kitty J’s Grave. The grave today has become a ‘modern shrine’, and local historians have proven that the bones are that of a young women, but it cannot be said whether they are Kitty J’s.

The Minerva Inn The Minerva Inn has stood in its current location on Looe St, Plymouth since 1572 and it is the “oldest licence premises” in the historic city of Plymouth. The Inn was originally built as a sea captains home and later served as a seaman’s rest. The building has links with Sir Francis Drake between 1540 - 1596 as he was reputed to have lived no more than 30 metres away. By the late 18th Century was well defined as a “press gang haunt” where poor and intoxicated men where beaten and dragged to the Parade in Plymouth through a purpose built tunnel, which still survives today. The Inn has a history of Haunting including a screaming man an Elizabethan lady, over 5 prostitutes and a young girl in Victorian dress. Independent witnesses unknown to the new owner had witnessed the young Victorian girl. She is normally seen in the bar area where she enters via a now sealed door.

Did You Know.. The earliest human remains in the Plymouth area are from a number of caves around Plymouth Sound. The ‘bone caves’, located at Cattedown, Oreston, Turnchapel and Stonehouse, contain extensive Upper Palaeolithic deposits, including those of Homo sapiens, some of the earliest such evidence in England. Drake’s Drum is the drum that Sir Francis Drake took sailing with him when he circumnavigated the globe. When Francis Drake was dying, he ordered that the drum be taken to Buckland Abbey. It is said that he will return to England when the drum is beaten, but it must only be beaten when England is in danger. Local legend says that when war is declared on England, the beat of his drum can be heard in settlements across Devon. A series of underground tunnels built between 1942 - 1944, form part of an extensive protected communication network at a number of establishments around the country.They housed Radio,telephone,telegraph and voice frequency connections direct to a series of important locations in the UK. Since World War II, The Master Ropemakers House has built up a reputation as one of the city’s most haunted houses. The Hangman’s Cell, where 141 French prisoners-of-war were said to have been executed, contains what is believed to be the only remaining working gallows in Britain.

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Eating & Drinking Local Directory Pub Food

Bars & Cocktail Annabel’s Steinbeck and Shaw The Slug and Lettuce The Dairy The Refectory Tigermilk

Vauxhall Street, Plymouth Barbican Leisure Park 19 Princess St, Plymouth 25-27 Bretonside, Plymouth 60 South Street, Plymouth Millbay Road, Plymouth

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Chinese Restaurants Buffet City China Wok Crystal Dragon Fortune Court Hakka Jasmin Restaurant Jasmine Chinese Ming Dynasty Noodle Lounge Seow’s The Hoe Cantonese The Wet Wok View Pan Asia The Red Lantern

1 Derrys Cross, Plymouth Colebrook Inn, Plympton 10-11 Southside St, Plymouth 9 Tin Ln, Plymouth 13 South Street, Plymouth 3 Buckland Terrace, Yelverton 115 Fore Street, Kingsbridge 203 Billacombe Rd, Plymstock Top Floor, Southside St, Plymouth 1 Radford Park Rd, Plymstock 14 Athenaeum Street, Plymouth 75 Hoe Rd, Plymouth 80 Royal Parade, Plymouth 57-59 North Hill, Plymouth

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Fish & Seafood Restaurants Catch 22 Faringdon Fish Bar Kingfisher Oyster Shack Platters Rockfish The Samphire Bush The Seafood & Pasta Bar The Village Restaurant

6 Quay Road, Plymouth 58 Faringdon Road, Plymouth 6 Glen Road, Plympton Stakes Hill, Kingsbridge 12 The Barbican, Plymouth Sutton Harbour, Plymouth 36 Admiralty Street 10 Quay Road, Plymouth 32 Southside Street, Plymouth

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French Restaurants Bistro 35 Chloe’s Le Bistrot Pierre

35 Church St, Ivybridge Princess Street, Plymouth Royal William Yard, Plymouth

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Greek Restaurants Lanterns Meze Grill The Grecian Taverna The Leandra Zeus

88 Cornwall St, Plymouth Sutton Harbour, Plymouth 9 Market Avenue, Plymouth 19-21 Frankfort Gate, Plymouth 150 Cornwall Street, Plymouth

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Indian Restaurants Cafe Indiya Ganges and Gurkha Himalayan Spice Mombay Brasserie Nibana Shapla Balti Cusine The Curry Corner The Eastern Eye The Spice Well

18 Church St, Stoke, Plymouth 36 Bretonside, Plymouth 31 New Street, Plymouth Penrose House, 4 Lockyers Quay 9 Morshead Rd, Crownhill 137 Ridgeway, Plymouth 1-3 Mutley Plain, Plymouth 57 Notte Street, Plymouth 18 Buckwell Street, Plymouth

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Italian Restaurants Bella Italia Frankie & Benny’s Morgans Market Grill Pizza Express Positano Prezzo

30-33 Derrys Cross, Plymouth Barbican Leisure Park, Plymouth 19 Princess St, Plymouth 9 Market Avenue, Plymouth 16 Barbican Approach, Plymouth 36 Mayflower Street, Plymouth Royal William Yard, Plymouth

26 October 2017

The Westward Inn Beefeater Rose and Crown The Bank The Britannia The Boringdon Arms The Burrator Inn The Chaddlewood The Elburton Inn The Fishermans Arms The Jack Rabbit The Miners The Royal Oak The Ship Inn The Ship

Lee Mill Bridge, Ivybridge 300 Plymouth Road, Plymouth Market Street, Yealmpton Old George St, Plymouth 1 Wolseley Road, Stoke, Plymouth Boringdon Rd, Plympton Dousland, Yelverton 100 Glen Road, Plympton 221 Elburton Road, Plymstock 31 Lambhay St, Plymouth 8-9 Howeston Road, Plymouth Hemerdon, Plympton Meavy, Yelverton Noss Mayo, South Devon Quay Road, Plymouth

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Spanish Restaurants Lorenzo Maritimo Zuzimo

26 Derrys Cross, Plymouth Hoe Road, Plymouth 153 Vauxhall Street, Plymouth

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Speciality Restaurants Arribas B-Bar Blues Bar & Grill Chiquito Ed’s Diner Fishbone Restaurant Heaven JDs Grill Koishii Las Iguanas Nandos River Cottage Samphire (V) Seco Lounge Shirley Valentine’s Sizzall The Dock The Mission The Stable Yo Sushi Yukisan Wagamama

56-58 Notte Street, The Barbican Barbican Theatre, Plymouth 8 The Parade, The Barbican Barbican Leisure Park, Plymouth 1 Charles Street, Plymouth 1 William Prance Rd, Crownhill 162 Exeter Street, Plymouth 17 Derrys Cross, Plymouth 101 Mayflower St, Plymouth Royal William Yard, Plymouth 15 Old Town Street, Plymouth Royal William Yard, Plymouth 111 Mayflower St, Plymouth 4 Royal William Rd, Plymouth 12 New Street, The Barbican 15 Derrys Cross, Plymouth King Point Marina, Brunel Way Sir John Hawkins Square, Plymouth Vauxhall Street, Plymouth 1 Charles Street, Plymouth 51 Notte Street, Plymouth Royal William Yard, Plymouth

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Traditional Restaurants Barbican Steak House Barbican Kitchen Boringdon Park Grosvenor Casino Innfusion Restaurant Jolly Jacks Kitley House Langdon Court Lord Louis Moorland Garden Hotel Moorland Hotel Quay 33 The Dome Rock Salt Cafe & Brasserie Steak and Omelette The Artillery Tower The Bridge The China House The Dock The Foxhound Inn The Quayside The Treasury The Treby Arms

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61 Notte Street, Plymouth 60 Southside St, Plymouth 55 Plymbridge Rd, Plympton 15 Derrys Cross, Plymouth Jurys Inn, Exeter Street, Plymouth Mayflower Marina, Richmond Walk Kitley Estate, Yealmpton Down Thomas, Plymouth Glen Road, Plympton Yeoland Down, Yelverton Wotter, Shaugh Prior, Plymouth 33 Southside St, Plymouth The Hoe, Plymouth 31 Stonehouse St, Plymouth 116-118 Cornwall St, Plymouth Durnford Street, Plymouth Shaw Way, Mount Batten Sutton Harbour, Plymouth King Point Marina, Plymouth Kingsbridge Road, Brixton Quay Road, Plymouth Catherine St, Plymouth Sparkwell, Plympton

Recipe bbcgoodfood recipe from Image from pixabay image from

Bananas taste spookily like creamy ice cream when frozen in ghostly robes of white chocolate - quick and easy, with just 4 ingredients

Recipe from: Image from:

Recipe from: Image from:

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October 2017 27

Seasonal Seedlings The barbecue has been stowed back in the shed and the sun shade wrapped up, however keep your trowel and gardening gloves handy because the change of season brings a choice of delicious new crops for your vegetable patch.


ummer is officially over, and whilst it may seem sad that the flip flops return to the wardrobe and scarves become a necessity, the trees turn beautiful shades of oranges and reds, crisp winter mornings make you glad for that morning coffee, and the summer crops can be replaced with winter crops. Growing winter veg involves the same care and maintenance needed in the summer but pests such as slugs and caterpillars are replaced by frosts and other bad weather conditions so you still have to be on the ball. Winter crops are generally hardy plants and can stand some pretty cold temperatures; but be warned frosts are your biggest enemy. It can leave your crops in a state beyond salvation, blackened leaves are a sign that frost has bitten and frozen soil will mean that the roots have no access to water and vital nutrients. One vital step towards the safety of your crops is to snuggle them up in a protective fleece or cover them with a cloche to shield against frost. Now is the time to do your preparation for your winter produce. It can be a bit tedious but it will make all the difference to the success of your patch. First off dig over

28 October 2017

your garden bed removing any old plants and weeds, as they could later pollute the soil. Then cover with manure, as this will feed your precious top soil and supply earth rich nutrients. The next step of sowing and getting savvy with what and how to plant is very important, for example it is too cold at this time of year for some seeds to germinate outside, so they will need to be started off inside your home or in a greenhouse. Home environment seedlings will be used to a warmer atmosphere so you must harden them off before exposing them to the full force of winter. This can be done by moving the seeds to an unheated, but completely covered area like a shed or utility room, for a couple of weeks before planting them in your garden. Over-wintering bulb vegetables and shoots can be planted straight into prepared ground. So now you have prepped, what delights can you plant this winter? We have split the different veg ideally sown at this time of year and added a few tips on how to maintain them, all the seeds can be purchased from any good garden centre or online;

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Purple Sprouting Broccoli

Garlic seeds benefit from a good bout of cold weather once sown. It’s possible to plant a clove which you have purchased from the supermarket but to guarantee the best flavour it is worth buying seeds. Sow into the soil approximately 3 inches deep with the sharp end upwards.

Many people are put off by Purple Sprouting Broccoli due to the long maturity period of one year, but when this vegetable is ripe it is sweet to taste and melts in the mouth. To grow in the winter it is advisable to buy plants and sow them wide apart as they grow quite large.

Pak Choy


A member of the cabbage family Pak Choy is an oriental vegetable which is delicious in salad’s, stir fry’s or simply steamed and served as a accompaniment. You can sow the seeds in October and it can be harvested after just six to eight weeks.

Broad Beans These beans are claimed to be among the most ancient harvested vegetables. They are easy to grow but need some attention should the wind pick up due to their height; they can grow up to 1.6m tall and will need to be supported by gardening cane. Dig a small trench with about 2 inches of depth, water the earth before sowing and allow the earth to absorb the water, push the seeds into the soil along the trench then cover over.

If you need a winter warmer then leek and potato soup is the perfect option and leeks are an easy vegetable to maintain. They need very little attention but will need covering if frost begins to show up. They mature slowly and like sunny sheltered patches but worth the effort when you look at the cost of leeks in the supermarkets at the moment.

Lettuce Most varieties of lettuce prefer cooler climates and sometimes can even survive without a cloche, however because of its leafy appearance it can be attractive to birds so covering over is still recommended. Nurture seedlings on a window sill with plenty of water but be wary not to leavethem in sunlight, they’ll

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“NOW IS THE TIME TO DO YOUR PREPARATION FOR YOUR WINTER PRODUCE” be ready to go out to the garden when they are around two inches tall. There are many vegetables which have been adapted to withstand the cold so ask for advice at the garden centre about what hybrid plants can withstand different conditions. With today’s rocketing cost of food and occasional questionable quality, people are deciding to grow more of their own fresh produce; it’s easy, enjoyable and all the family can join in. Now is the time to get busy sowing and come spring, you can get busy harvesting.

October 2017 29


October 2017 bookings and family memories. Our sleepover experiences are engaging and let you know what you can do to help preserve the fantastic marine environment and how we all have a part in helping to keep it safe. The night will include a twilight tour, arts and crafts, games, a big screen movie, midnight snacks and in the morning a light breakfast. BONFIRE NIGHT Sunday 5th November Plymouth Hoe

Fine Wine Tasting at Le Vignoble

DUKE MINI WEDDING COLLECTION Thursday 5th October, 5:30-7:30pm The Duke of Cornwall Hotel The Duke of Cornwall Hotel’s mini Wedding Collection is back! Following the success of the last event in March this year, there’s another chance for couples to discover what the venue has to offer this autumn. This free event will be hosted in the stunning ballroom. The hotel is teaming up with a select handful of its trusted wedding suppliers to dress and decorate this space to show how it might look for a wedding celebration- the perfect way to get some inspiration for your own big day. PLYMOUTH 10K Sunday 8th October Princess Street Plymouth 10k holds an undulating course, suitable for runners of all abilities. Starting in the City Centre, you’ll head out towards Marsh Mills along the embankment and back whilst taking advantage of closed roads and great scenery. The cost for Affiliated runners to take part is £23 and Un-affiliated runners is £25. Full details of the event can be found at www.


FINE WINE TASTING Thursday 12th October, 7-8:30 Le Vignoble, Roysal William Yard Join us for the rare opportunity to try a select handful of fine wines guided by a member of the Le Vignoble team. A great opportunity to discover how older & rare wines can display a whole new world of characteristics. Includes an exclusive 15% discount on any take home purchases of fine wine at the event. Booking essential, maximum 10 people.

21st-29th October The Plymouth Anthenaeum PlymLit17 is a nine day literature festival which includes events, venues and organisations from across the city. It will be an engaging and entertaining festival for adults and children that highlights local talent as well as bringing in authors from across the South West and further afield. The festival programme will offer something for avid readers of novels, historical and sports books right through to writers of flash fiction, poetry and comedy. SLEEPING WITH SHARKS Friday 27th October The National Marine Aquarium

TOUR DE MOOR Sunday 15th October Harrowbeer Airfield, Yelverton Call yourself a cyclist? Fancy a challenge? We are inviting the toughest of cyclists

30 October 2017

to master the moors; as you take on our annual Tour de Moor challenge. There will be mud, sweat and plenty of gears in action as mountain bike riders take to the moors to embark on a cycle ride like no other. Sponsored by Print Copy Scan, the ride will encompass challenging off-road moorland trails set amongst the spectacular scenery of Dartmoor. Choose between the intermediate 23km route or if you’re feeling brave enough, tackle the hills up to Princetown on the 52km route, your cycling skills will definitely be put to the ultimate test.

As always, Plymouth will be hosting a bonfire and fireworks display on Sunday 5 November on The Hoe for Bonfire Night. There’ll be fairground rides, catering stands and a whole host of entertainment. As the night draws in and the temperature drops, this event is sure to warm up when the bonfire is lit and the fireworks display is set off from the citadel.

Sleeping with the sharks is an exciting opportunity to see what happens in the underwater world around us. The experience is ideal for parties, group

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Bonfire Night on Plymouth Hoe

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October 2017 33

Health & Beauty

The Importance of Posture: Change Your habits, Break Your Routine


remember working in a call centre when I was 18. I remember the massive shock to my body of sitting down, all day, hunched over a computer. I also remember those that used their wheeliechairs to propel themselves across the room because they were too lazy to walk 10 meters. At the time I thought that was weird. Unfortunately, now as a chiropractor, this and similar habits are a day in day reality for most of my patients. Think of your daily routine. You wake up, you shower, you sit down for breakfast, and you drive to work. You sit at your desk, you might get up occasionally to use the bathroom or for a drink, you eat at your desk, you drive home and sit on the sofa and then go to bed. This isn’t an extreme example; it’s a typical day in the life of an average office worker.

These positions are often related to standard complaints seen by a chiropractor, such as lower back pain, upper back and neck pain. But have you considered the impact on conditions such as headaches and shoulder pain? Ever tried to take a deep breath in whilst in a hunched position? Definitely not as easy as when you’re sitting up correctly. What about sitting with your legs crossed, or a wallet in your back pocket? What about the impact of leaning on your arm or always turning to talk to your colleague? These habits may seem innocuous, but remember you are probably doing them hour after hour, week after week. It’s exactly the same as overeating slightly every day

A report in April 2017 showed that the average UK man spends a fifth of his lifetime sitting. A recent report by the British Heart Foundation found that 20 million people in the UK are physically inactive, with women being 36% more likely to be inactive. UK guidelines recommend at least 150 minutes of moderate physical activity a week

The impact to heart and lung health is obvious, but what are the impacts to the rest of the body, and importantly, quality of life. Our bodies are designed for movement; throughout the human skeleton there are hundreds of joints to help us move. The spine has a natural curve to it and individual discs to act as a shock absorber through our spines. The secondary shock absorption comes primarily from the joints between the vertebrae.

In a normal upright position, the weight of the head is distributed through the neck and spine. In a sitting position the head starts to track forward and the upper back rounds along with the shoulders. In this position the head effectively weighs more, as the upper back isn’t designed to cope with this strain and the chin will jut forward putting pressure on the upper neck. Sitting in a hunched position for 20 minutes will cause the ligaments in the lower back to overstretch putting additional strain on the discs. This is all very academic, but what is the impact on our health?

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and wondering where that extra stone in weight came from. As a chiropractor one of the biggest stumbling blocks to patients improvements is getting them to identify and change these habits.

The role of a chiropractor is quite straightforward. Our job is to assess a spine for the normal movement between each vertebra.

A normal, healthy, functioning spine should have a good amount of movement between each joint. It should move, spring and function like any shock-absorbing structure that you know. The more we stress our spine with habits and forces in the wrong place or direction, the more we start to lose that normal shock absorbing quality. The movement in the joints reduces and can’t handle forces as it’s designed to do. It essentially starts to stiffen up. The biggest problem however, is that these changes don’t necessarily cause pain or symptoms.We can stress our spines in the same way year after year, and not worry or change the habit because “we get away with it.” However, one day our bodies can’t handle the stress anymore and suddenly we’re in pain. People often come to their appointments saying things like “I just picked up a pen” or “I turned awkwardly;” these events are essentially the straw breaking the camel’s back, the body can’t handle the stress anymore and pain is your bodies mechanism to slow you down and stop you creating further damage. Once a chiropractor finds the levels in the spine where the joints aren’t moving quite as well as they should, they can perform a chiropractic adjustment. These are precise and highly skilled techniques designed to restore the normal movements to the spine. Importantly, these chiropractic adjustments have important changes to the nervous system that explain changes other than pain.

As a chiropractor, it is important that we try to encourage our patients to take control of their own health. The simplest way is to try and break your routine

We will often sit on the same chair at home every day, so change your chair. Every 30 minutes get up and move around. At work, make the effort to walk across the room rather than push your chair. Try to do some tasks standing rather than sitting.

Take a walk at lunch time to clear the mind and loosen the body, maybe park your car a little further away so you have to walk further, get off the bus a few stops early. Small changes like these can make a huge change over the course of a few months.

Stop crossing your legs. Stop sitting on your legs. Stop leaning on the same arm. Stop looking down at your phone all the time. These are common examples of what we do daily. These are often personal. Look at your daily habits and think “how often do I do this, and can I change it.”

With the huge popularity of fitness trackers we are now more able to track our activity levels, making us more aware of how inactive we are, and therefore more responsible to change it.

With many of us not reaching the 150 minutes a week of exercise, think about how you can add this to your daily routine

To help your posture when sitting there are some simple changes. First of all, try and sit up tall, gently squeeze your shoulder blades together and down, and finally imagine a balloon is attached to your breast bone and its gently pulling your chest up. Hold this position gently, it

shouldn’t feel forced or rigid. Aim to hold this for a few seconds at least 200 times a day. This seems excessive but it will help. Now try to do this standing. It will help strengthen the muscles that stabilize your shoulders and upper back; it will bring your neck into a more neutral position and will cause the gluteal muscles to fire to help stabilize the lower back. A full chiropractic assessment will help identify postural and spinal changes, and will give you steps towards making longterm benefits. By making changes to your posture and identifying repetitive lifestyle habits will further improve the results of regular chiropractic care. The goal of chiropractic is not just dealing with pain. I am always amazed at how long people will suffer in pain before visiting our practice. I’ve learnt that its not really the pain people suffer that makes them consult a chiropractor. It’s the impact on their health. Its not being able to play a certain sport, its not being able to play with the kids, its missing out on social events that are the factors that finally drive people to seek chiropractic care.

Chiropractic is about keeping you healthy, making you feel comfortable in your own body and helping you to reach your own optimal health goal

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Jonathan Cook, who is a Doctor of Chiropractic, graduated from the AngloEuropean College of Chiropractic in 2009. He is a qualified chiropractor registered with the General Chiropractic Council. He has written and published articles in the peer-reviewed Journal of Clinical Chiropractic Pediatrics and is the current post-registration tutor for the Tamar Faculty of the Royal College of Chiropractors.

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Jon Cook (Chiropractor)

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BUSINESS PROFILE Ashley Smith took over H.M Williams Chartered accountants in January 2015, a natural progression from his starting point as an employee. A year after our first visit, it’s clear that the company is going from strength to strength, complete with a brand new location!

Ashley bought the business from Hugh in January 2015, meaning that he had full control, and could get it on the track he wanted it to go down. “The biggest challenge since taking over has been making tweaks to the way is it run” Ashley tells us. For example, timesheets weren’t introduced until Ashley came on boardmeaning that Ashley can analyse the performance of his staff members; and also review how long people are taking when preparing accounts. “This enables us to have a discussion with either the staff member, if they need to use another approach, or the client if they need to tweak how they are processing their records”. This is especially important seeing as H.M Williams offer a fixed fee service.

Ashley tells us that when he first started, he would always say that it was the fixed fees that set them apart from competitors, but in recent years; this has become quite common practice. “I would love to think that we are a friendly, approachable group. If everyone gets on well together, it’s a friendly atmosphere and that gets relayed across to the clients”.

Ashley stresses the importance of being there to serve their clients; “If you’ve got a question, no matter how small you can pick up the phone and know that someone will be there to help you”. “After being an employee and working my way up, there is a line you’re crossing and you sit there and think “I don’t want to fall out with anyone”- I needed to gain some respect. But it was easier than I expected because everyone’s like family here”. “It’s important to have a good relationship with people. We’ve got clients here who came through with Iain- our Tax Manager, When Iain got married one of the clients got an invite as their relationship was so good!”

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Ashley Smith

Of course, the main change since our last visit in 2016 is a complete relocation to their new premises in Ashleigh Way, Langage Business Park.

“Because Hugh went to Eton, H.M Williams isn’t your normal ‘run of the mill’ small firm. As well as dealing with small businesses I have dealt with former cabinet ministers, large landed estates and Lloyds underwriters”.

In regards to our fees, when we give a quote; we sit down with the client and discuss how everything is put together, discuss their systems and how they use them- so our quote is tailored to their specific needs. Our philosophy has always been to let clients know what their fees are going to be before the work is started


shley Smith, owner of H M Williams, became an employee at the firm in 2007 after leaving his previous position in Cornwall. “I got a job here at H.M Williams. Hugh, (Ashley’s predecessor) was in his early sixties and Tim, his partner was only a year younger than Hugh. I took the job with the view that if I was good enough I would step up and go from there”.

The first and main reason for the move is that it is the final step out of my predecessor’s shadow. That goes hand in hand with a new image for the firm and somewhere a little more professional

Ashley tells us that the firms previous premises on Valley Road, where H M Williams had been since 1999; also prompted the move. “It wasn’t an easy location to get to”.

Having moved into a new build, Ashley had a complete blank canvas to create their new office space. Local Office designers, Karris- met with Ashley and the team and came up with a complete scheme for the new location. “This office has exactly the same floor space as Valley Road- but you would never think it. Valley Road was full of corridors and small rooms; whereas this new building


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is completely open plan”. Ashley tells us that the firm could potentially double in size in the new premises, without having to do a great deal of moving around! Ashley explains that they were lucky enough that the move coincided with the end of the major roadworks at Chaddlewood, so it worked out perfectly. “This office is easier to get too for our clients that come and visit; of course we also offer home visits for people that need that particular service”.

“We look to train people up. We are potentially looking next month to take on another trainee to start on the AAT”. The AAT; or the Association of Accounting

Ashley Smith with his team at H.M. Williams

Technicians is a UK qualification and professional body for vocational accountants. “We’ve got the location now; we’ve got the client base; so if we can start building on staff then we will be set”. During our visit last year, Ashley told us that the firm nominates a charity of choice, and in 2016 this was Jeremiah’s Journey.

In regards to staff changes, there have been two replacements of former members in September last year. “We are currently looking for an assistant accountant to come in and manage a small portfolio of our clients. Trying to find the right person for the job can be hard because if they have good skills they get snapped up!”

This year, H M Williams are supporting St Luke’s, and Ashley tells us that four of the staff members; including himself are taking part in the Plymouth 10K

Ashley also stresses the importance of networking for the business, and tells us that he started out originally because it was something the firm never did.

“I got invited by Nash and Co Solicitors to attend Plymouth Albion one Christmas. I was sitting at the table, and bearing in mind that the practice had been going for 35 years; someone came up to me and said ‘Oh, I’ve never heard of

H.M Williams, are you a new firm?” That got the ball rolling for Ashley to become a member of numerous local networking events such as Plympton Chamber, BoB and Plymouth Business Network. “I find that Plymouth generally does business with Plymouth; so if you’re not on the radar then that isn’t going to be helpful. If I can pull myself out of bed in the mornings- obviously with kids that definitely doesn’t get easier! Then I really enjoy it, I like having a good business relationship with others”. Looking to the future, we ask Ashley where he would like to see H.M Williams in the next few years. “I would like to get to the point where I consider bringing in a business partner. At the moment it’s quite good that whatever decision I make is the decision that happens; but there are points where I do get snowed under. If someone else was to come in, that enables workload to be spread and ultimately the practice gains more knowledge!” “At the moment there’s myself at the top, then my two managers; Iain who deals with all the tax, and Sharon who deals with the accounts. We have great staff, we have a brand new location; now it’s just a case of finding someone that fits in and ultimately, is an asset to the team!”

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a bad moms christmas Starring Mila Kunis and Katherin Hahn


Your guide to the films hitting cinemas this month

Under-appreciated and overburdened moms Amy, Kiki and Carla rebel against the challenges and expectations of the Super Bowl for moms: Christmas. As if creating the perfect holiday for their families isn’t hard enough, they’ll have to do it while hosting and entertaining their own respective mothers when they come to visit.

Released: 3rd November



Starring Michael Fassbender, Rebecca Ferguson & Toby Jones

Starring Katheryn Winnick, Ed Harris and Gerard Butler

When a woman disappears; the only clue to her whereabouts is her pink scarf- which has been wrapped around the neck of a snowman. There’s a killer at large, and he seems to be playing a twisted game. The local detective is deployed to hunt the elusive killer, but he can’t do it alone so he enlists the help of a stellar recruit. The pair embark on their most dangerous mission to date..

After a series of natural disasters threatened the planet, the world’s leaders created a network of satellites to control the climate. But now, something has gone wrong: the system built to protect Earth is attacking it, and it becomes a race against the clock to uncover the real threat before a worldwide geostorm wipes out everything and everyone along with it.

Released: 13th October

Released: 19th October



Starring Andrew Garfield and Claire Foy

Starring Kate Winslet, Idris Elba and Marci T House

After contracting polio at the age of 28, Robin Cavendish is confined to a bed and given only months to live. With help from his family and inventor Teddy Hall, Cavendish devotes the rest of his life to help fellow patients and the disabled, by travelling the world with his devoted wife with the hope of transforming the lives of other like him.

Stranded on a mountain after a tragic plane crash, two strangers must work together to endure the extreme elements of the remote, snow-covered terrain. Realizing that help is not on the way, they embark on a perilous journey across hundreds of miles of wilderness, pushing each other to survive and discovering their inner strength.

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Released: 20th October

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Oracle Magazine Issue 105 October 2017  

Plymouth and South Hams Leading Lifestyle Magazine

Oracle Magazine Issue 105 October 2017  

Plymouth and South Hams Leading Lifestyle Magazine