Giving up supermarkets for lent?

This is the thing to do this year, there are several of us in the boscombe area, who, having read such books as Shopped, and Not on the label, and are sick of spending our money on pap foods - have decided to keep right out of the supermarkets till Easter.

Well we are so lucky in Boscombe to have some fantastic places to get nice food! I reccomend the new Boscombe food co-op, where you can make a monthly order of an array of products. I order rice, beans, lentils, ecover products, a BIG bag of muslei, sugar, honey, oats......... if you want to join, you can join the Co-ops yahoo group, and find out more from other members. click the link on the sidebar

two more of my favorite shopping experiences in Boscombe, First those cheeky munchkins at the market, that's Dean and Wayne, who are my entertainment on a Thursday and Saturday. Its good value - you might have to eat some of it pretty quick, but for the quantity you can buy compared to Sainsburys, I dont think that matters, - oh, and it tastes much better!

Secondly the friendly butchers in Palmerston Rd. If you eat meat, it is reasuring to see these blokes chopping bits off a dead pig, rather than buying shrink wrapped bacon. good for a laugh too!

International Womens Day - Boscombe Event!

This year for international womens day we are holding a celebration in Kings Park school in Boscombe. I will be there with a stall about Breastfeeding in the UK and around the world. `the food co-op will be doing the teas and coffee's and there will be dancing and singing from around the world.

Saturday 10th March 2007
Kings Park Primary School
Ashley Rd

for moreinfo contact Nasrin 01782363827

Unison Womens Conference

We took both a Baby Milk action stall, and a Womens Environmental Network Stall along to the BIC today for the Unison Womens Conference. we had some great fun seeing if people could figure out what a Mooncup was!

Breastfeeding discussion

From the end of this month I will be leading breastfeeding discussion meetings at the Breast friends group in Boscombe. The breast friends group meets weekly, giving breastfeeding mothers the opportunity to meet up, to borrow books and information. The last sesssion of the month is now going to be lead by your local friendly La Leche League Leader!! Meeting topics include Family foods, At home with your new baby abd the Benefits of Breastfeeding. for more information check out the La Leche League websites in the sidebar. If you need help with breastfeeding, you can call me or another local leader through the national helpline: 0845 120 2918

Boscombe banks on its new wave

Bournemouth's reviving suburb is building an artificial reef for surfers and flats for the well-heeled, writes Alexander Garrett

Sunday February 4, 2007
The Observer

The online surf report from Sorted Surf Shop isn't too promising: 'Flat today, but might get a wave midweek.' By September, the hope is that the outlook here in Boscombe will be considerably better.
Last month, work began on a project to create Europe's first artificial reef by dropping hundreds of sandbags into the sea some 245 yards off Boscombe's beach. The £1.4m project is aimed at turning a sedate suburb of Bournemouth into the south coast's leading surf centre, since the reef will - if all goes to plan - generate waves up to 13ft high and double the number of good surfing days in Boscombe from 153 to 306 a year, setting the town up as a rival to Newquay in Cornwall.
The reef, though, is just one part of a regeneration project which it is hoped will revitalise Boscombe, and make it a property hot spot in the next few years. Work has already begun to put Boscombe's crumbling pier back into shape - it will have its end lopped off and be given a smart new entrance building, due to open by May. The £8m regeneration revolves around a 'Spa Village' that includes new restaurants and shops, extensive landscaping, and 42 'super chalets' - upmarket beach huts that will be available for hire by the day.
It's all being paid for by - you guessed it - a development of luxury apartments. Barratt Homes has spent more than £9m on an old car park on the waterfront, which it is converting into Honeycombe Beach, a set of 169 apartments in nine blocks, clustered rather tightly around communal gardens and a courtyard. Some, but by no means all, of these new homes will enjoy spectacular views across Bournemouth Bay and Swanage, towards Hengistbury Head.

Prices for the first group, to be sold off-plan, start at £389,000 for a two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment that doesn't even have sea views - it looks into the courtyard. A similar apartment with sea views, and a study thrown in, will cost you an eye-watering £950,000. The first apartments will be ready to occupy in spring 2008.

Boscombe has an interesting - though chequered - history. A large part of it was owned in the mid-19th century by Sir Percy Florence Shelley, son of the poet. In the 1860s Lord Malmesbury had the idea of using Boscombe's natural spring to create a health spa that emphasised fresh sea air and bathing. That scheme was soon abandoned in favour of building big houses instead, and over the next couple of decades Boscombe developed as a conventional seaside resort.

From the 1950s to the 1970s, however, it went into decline, and many of its grand Victorian houses were split into bedsits. It has taken a couple of decades for regeneration to finally get off the ground.

James Scollard, who runs estate agent Clifftons, says the bedsits are now firmly on the way out: 'Boscombe has already come up a great deal during the past couple of years. We've seen a lot of the older houses come down to be replaced with luxury apartments.' He says the council is now rejecting the conversion of further hotels and B&Bs into apartments, in an effort to revive the town's appeal as a family holiday resort. Some £2m has also been ploughed into improving and landscaping Boscombe Chine Gardens, with new paths, pagodas and playgrounds.

The most unfortunate aspect of Boscombe's decline was that the bedsits attracted drug users. And the problem hasn't been entirely cleaned up: only last year, a local woman found 13 discarded needles on a beach where her children were playing.

But Scollard is enthusiastic about Boscombe's revival. 'The reef is going to make this one of the best places to surf in the country, and it will generate lots of extra visitors for B&Bs, hotels and holiday apartments,' he says. 'For investors, capital growth should be strong here for the next few years.' He thinks surfers are unlikely to be in the market for £300,000 apartments, but Nigel Still, from upmarket estate agent Stephen Noble, takes a different view. 'I think the reef is a masterstroke,' he says. 'It will be great for windsurfing, surfing, all kinds of watersports. And you'd be surprised who's into these sports: it goes from the mid-teens to the mid-to- late forties, and includes a lot of affluent people, as well as those who simply like to sit and watch the spectacle.'

Barratt's apartments at Honeycombe Beach will appeal to those who like to be right down by the water, but there are plenty of other options for buying in Boscombe - many at less elevated prices. Stephen Noble is selling The Reef, for example - a new-build development of 55 two- and three-bedroom luxury apartments directly above Boscombe pier, where prices range from £250,000 to £850,000. The penthouses have terraces with hot tubs.

The Litzo is a stylish development of apartments and townhouses, also at the top of the cliff, by developer Blue Homes. There's one townhouse still for sale there, also through Stephen Noble, for £695,000. In less vaunted positions, Scollard says you can still buy a two-bedroom flat in a converted house in Boscombe for around £160,000.

'As an investor, that's what I'd probably go for,' he says. 'A property like that has great potential to increase in value.'

Breastfeeding Manifesto

Work is now underway to gather support for the Breastfeeding Manifesto

The Breastfeeding Manifesto was produced in 2006 in consultation with over twenty UK organisations working to improve awareness of the health benefits of breastfeeding and its role in reducing health inequalities.

This Manifesto has been launched for the following reasons:

Several key organisations, including breastfeeding charities and professional bodies, were lobbying government for neccessary changes in policy and approach with regards to brestfeeding in the UK, but there was no cohesive message, no unified call to the UK Government for action.
Despite signficant amounts of lobbying, the Department of Health still brought to an end the role of a National Infant Feeding Coordinator even though our Government in 2002 signed up to the Global Stratergy for Infant and Young Child Health which calls for a National Coordinator.
NICE was soon to publish two key documents that could act as the back-bone of a National Breastfeeding Stratergy and it was imperative that we ensured that these action plans gained the support and resources they needed to be fully implemented.
The Breastfeeding Manifesto is being championed by David Kidney MP, Annette Brooke MP and Julie Kirkbride MP and a strong coalition of breastfeeding charities, breastfeeding co-ordinators, professional bodies, Royal Colleges etc. The Breastfeeding Manifesto Coalitions’ objective is to achieve widespread cross-party support for this document. We aim to ensure that its principles are reflected in government policy and legislation.

The manifesto is based in evidence, both from a review of formal studies and from a national consultation with over 800 health professionals, service users and policy makers conducted in 2005 by the Mother and Infant Research Unit, University of York, funded by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence.

November 2006 Update
The Breastfeeding Manifesto Coalition has met twice in Westminster and currently has 24 key organisations signed-up to the Manifesto. It is important that the Breastfeeding Manifesto Coalition is broad and strong and there are still many more organisations that we are planning to engage. If you are a member of an Non-Governmental Organisation who would like to join the coalition then please click here to send us an email with your details and we will be in touch.

Parliamentary Support
Over 80 MPs have already expressed their support for this important initiative. Our three parliamentary champions wrote to every MP in the UK in early October with a copy of the manifesto (this needs to be a link to the pdf of the Manifesto) and a reply slip (this needs to be a link to the reply slip) asking them to add their support. Many of these Parliamentarians will send off the Reply slip, adding their support to the Manifesto straight away. But, many other Parliamentarians will need to be further engaged and lobbied before they fully understand the importance of the Manifesto and decide to add their support. Click here to find out how you can help.

Why it is so important
The World Health Organisation recommends exclusive breastfeeding for six months, yet less than 2% of British babies are exclusively breastfed for this length of time. Research from the Public Health Collaborating Centre on Maternal and Child Nutrition demonstrates that breastfeeding has a major role to play in public health, promoting health in both the short and long term for baby and mother. This work concludes that breastfeeding has a key role to play in tackling the fundamental policy goal of addressing inequalities in health in the UK. Despite the overwhelming health benefits and cost savings associated with breastfeeding, UK rates remain unacceptably low.

Women’s ability to breastfeed is constrained by barriers at a range of levels and far from being a matter of choice, breastfeeding is a behaviour that is simply not accessible for many mothers and babies, especially in lower socio-economic groups. This Manifesto (link to the Manifesto), which you can see has been produced by over twenty organisations, draws attention to the gaps in UK breastfeeding policy and outlines seven key objectives that need to be met.

This is a cross party issue that we feel simply cannot be ignored – it is about public health and breaking down inequalities - together we can lead to lasting change, for future generations. If you are an MP, MSP, AM or Peer and would like to add your support please click here. Otherwise click here to add your support on-line.

Together we can make a difference for future generations.
Started a new Open University course this week. This year I am doing Philosophy - and really looking forward to it as the course looks really interesting.