Thursday, 25 August 2011


What’s Your Goal
Premieres Thursday 25th August at 19.30 Sky Sports 2 /2HD
Three part series to run weekly


Earlier in the year, npower offered every budding Alex Ferguson, potential Howard Webb and future Jeff Stelling a chance to bring their dreams to life with the ‘What’s Your Goal?’ competition.

From the high-pressure role of a football manager to the split-second timing of a pitch-side photographer, this was an opportunity for children yearning for a job in sports media to get first-hand experience of the industry.

The prizes took youngsters to the QPR training ground, inside the Sky Sports studios and even within touching distance of the players in the npower Championship Play-Off final at Wembley Stadium.

Among the professionals offering their advice were Queens Park Rangers manager Neil Warnock and Sky Sports presenter Dave Jones.

In this three-part series, the children demonstrate the desire and passion needed to cut it in one of the nation’s biggest industries.

And for those youngsters aiming for a similar career, heed the advice of 12-year-old Oliver Marden who, having won the chance to experience being a sports presenter, said “You should try for everything and grasp every opportunity you can.”

npower is bringing back its What’s Your Goal initiative bigger and better than ever before for 2012. Any young people interested in getting involved should keep an eye out for updates on the website:


For further information please contact the npower press office at Frank Lizzie Earl and Carmel Mulhall
0207 693 6999/



Gemma Merna pads up to captain the Lazy Bar Walkers (LBW) for this year’s Friends Life t20 Finals Day

Hollyoaks star Gemma Merna is set to bowl over Twenty20 cricket fans after being announced as the new captain of the LBW – Lazy Bar Walkers.

The new LBW initiative by the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) was launched by The Only Way is Essex star Sam Faiers at the start of the competition, but with Essex Eagles failing to progress to the finals, Lancashire girl Gemma stepped up to the plate. The Channel 4 actress will give a whole new meaning to the term ‘Leg Before Wicket’ as the sporty siren exchanges her handbag for a cricket bat.

Gemma’s latest starring role sees her captain The LBW team during Friends Life t20 Finals Day. Along with Gemma, the Lazy Bar Walkers will be helping cricket fans enjoy the finals even more on Saturday 27th August by being match-goers’ personal helper.

Friends Life t20 Finals Day takes place at Edgbaston and sees Lancashire Lightning take on Leicestershire Foxes in the first semi final followed by Somerset against Hampshire Royals. The winning sides will meet in the final scheduled to start at 18.45.

Following feedback from fans, the ECB launched the LBW service so that groups of match-goers wouldn’t miss any of the excitement of Friends Life t20 cricket which is a fast and adrenaline fuelled variety of the sport. Since its launch in June, the LBW service has proved hugely popular with fans, with thousands of booking requests received via the initiative’s website.

On the LBW initiative, Gemma said; “Being a Manchester girl, I’ve obviously got a real soft spot for Lancashire Lightning, but I won’t let my bias get in the way of making sure fans of all sides have a great day. Having been to a few t20 matches I understand the frustration of being stuck at the bar whilst all the action is happening at the crease.

“The LBW will take this pain away. We’re here so that cricket fans can enjoy the Friends Life t20 Finals Day even more than ever before and I like to think we can also provide a bit of friendly banter!”

The Friends Life t20 is the first cricket competition where the LBW service has been implemented in the UK and was selected due to the tournament’s lively nature which proves a great day out for groups of friends to watch matches together. Fans can expect a real carnival atmosphere at Edgbaston as the competition comes to an end and organisers are encouraging as many as possible to take advantage of the service so as not to miss out on some great moments.

A spokesperson for the ECB also commented: “The Friends Life t20 is an all out action competition. The speed of the game is so fast that if you blink, you will miss it.

“We are expecting a dramatic conclusion to this year’s t20 competition at Edgbaston on Saturday, so it is all the more important that the decisive moments are not missed queuing for food and drink. The LBW service has proved a massive hit at county grounds this summer, so we’re delighted to roll the team out for Finals Day and to have Gemma as our team captain.”

“Edgbaston is a fantastic cricket ground, with a vibrant atmosphere and has played host to some truly memorable moments in recent years. We’re hoping for more of the same on Saturday so urge cricket fans from all across the country to come down for what will be a great day out.”

The team of Lazy Bar Walkers are available to be booked for free from the LBW’s bespoke website To reserve an LBW for Friends Life t20 Finals Day, cricket fans can choose their own LBW, girl or boy, who will accompany them to the match.

For more information about the Lazy Bar Walkers Service, the ECB or Friends Life t20 please contact:

Greg Double on 020 7693 6999 or email


Notes to editor:

• A t20 game involves two teams, each has a single innings batting for a maximum of 20 overs.
• A t20 game is completed in about three and half hours, with each innings lasting around 75 minutes.
• It was introduced to create a lively form of the game which would be attractive to spectators at the ground and viewers on television.
• The Friends Life t20 season runs from 1st June through to Finals Day in 2011 at Edgbaston on August 27.


Window Shopping...
Online supermarket, Ocado, hits the high street with innovative new ‘shop’

OCADO will be moving from computer screens to shop windows, as the award-winning online supermarket takes residence at central London shopping centre, One New Change, to showcase the next generation in shopping.

In a UK first, live between August 25 and September 1, an integrated window display will allow shoppers to purchase all their grocery essentials and a few indulgent treats on their mobile phones, to be delivered direct to their door. From stamps to Shiraz; toilet roll to tuna; even delicious treats from the supermarket’s new Reflets de France and Daylesford Organic ranges, never has window shopping been so satisfying.

An experimental and innovative departure from its traditional business model, the Ocado virtual store at Unit 23, One New Change in the City of London will be accessible 24 hours a day with customers able to shop in a few easy steps:

1. If you don’t have it already, download the Ocado on the Go app from the App Store or Android Market
2. Open the app and press the barcode symbol in the top right of your screen
3. Hold the camera screen over the barcode of a product until it recognises it
4. When the product appears on your screen, press ‘add’ to put it in your basket
5. Keep on shopping and then check out!

A strictly online business, this is the first time Ocado has migrated from the internet to bricks and mortar. However, being pioneers in online grocery retail - introducing the world’s first transactional supermarket mobile application on iPhone in 2009 - the company was keen to stick to both its roots and strengths of digital technology with this unique spin on high street shopping. As of this May, mobile devices were used in a staggering 15% of Ocado checkouts; customers now regularly shop via the Ocado On The Go application.

Jason Gissing, Ocado co-founder, said: “The virtual shop window is a bold move for Ocado and something we are very excited about.

“We hope this trial is a hit, and based on its success, we’ll be looking at options around continuing this ‘virtual window shopping’ approach in other locations UK-wide.”

Head down to Unit 23, One New Change, from 26th August until the end of the month armed with your mobile phone for a truly unique shopping experience!

For further information contact:

Estelle Boon, Frank PR Tel: 020 7693 6959 Email:
Francesca Hall, Frank PR Tel: 020 7693 6983 Email:
Rochelle Collison, Frank PR Tel: 020 7693 7496 Email:

Notes to Editors:
About Ocado:
Ocado ( was established in 2000, started trading in 2002 and is now one of Britain’s leading online supermarkets. Ocado operates a centralised distribution model which means that it does not rely upon a network of stores from which to service customers. Ocado delivers over 21,000 product lines including Waitrose goods and a growing Ocado own-label range. In June 2010, it scooped Online Retailer of the Year at The Grocer Gold Awards 2010 and Customer Technology of the Year at the BT Retail Week Technology Awards 2010. In October 2010 it was named World E-tailer of the Year at the prestigious World Retail Awards

Thursday, 18 August 2011


EU must be joking!

England has the least number of paid and public holidays across Europe

As our European neighbours begin their August escapes, research released today by reveals discrepancies in paid and public holiday entitlements across Europe. When looking at both statutory annual leave and public holiday allowances across the EU, it’s the English who come bottom of the table, with a minimum of only 28 days holiday when compared to residents of Sweden and Portugal, who benefit from 39 days in total.

Of the 12 nations surveyed, the hotel expert revealed the average leave and public holiday entitlement to be 34 days across Europe, meaning UK workers lose out on over a week away from the office and working at least six days more. With Ireland and the Netherlands following suit with just 29 days, it’s Denmark, parts of Germany, Portugal and Sweden doing the least work, with 38 and 39 days holiday respectively.

Despite having one of the lowest number of bank holidays on the calendar, the Danish appear to be well looked after, with 27 statutory days of annual leave ahead of Finland, France, Norway, Portugal and Sweden who all receive 25 days. Residents in the Netherlands, England, Ireland and Italy have just 20 days statutory paid annual leave, with additional entitlement at the discretion of employers.

A plethora of annual bank holidays also exist across Europe, with Portugal, Sweden, Spain and some parts of Germany topping the list with 14 days each, with holidays such as ‘Freedom Day’ (Dia da Liberdade) on April 25th in Portugal and ‘Midsummer's Day’ on June 25th in Sweden. In contrast, England has the least number of public holidays, only eight, with our patron saint’s day, St George’s Day on 23rd April not recognised with a public holiday, unlike Ireland’s St. Patrick’s Day, whose celebrations on 17th March are famous worldwide.

Alison Couper, from, said: “August is often the month when English holidaymakers typically head to continental European destinations such as France and Italy, just as residents of these countries escape themselves! The results of our research are sure to leave many thinking they’ve drawn the European short straw and wondering what they might do with the extra 11 days holiday a year if they lived and worked in Sweden or Portugal!”

Total European holiday entitlement (Click to enlarge)

For more information, please call:
Tom Antoniw or Freyja Phillips at Frank PR on 020 7693 6999 or email
Kate Hopcraft,, 020 7019 2165

As part of the Expedia group which operates in all major markets, offers almost 140,000 quality hotels, B&Bs and serviced apartments worldwide. If a customer can find the same deal for less on a prepaid hotel, will match it. benefits from one of the largest hotel contracting teams in the industry negotiating the best rates for its customers, plus there are 2m reviews from users who have actually stayed in the hotels to ensure customers make an informed choice when booking. has recently launched its Welcome Rewards customer loyalty programme in the UK, where customers can earn a free night for every ten nights stayed (subject to Welcome Rewards terms and conditions as set out at won the Gold Award for best hotel booking site in Webuser magazine in February 2009. Travellers can book online or by contacting one of the multilingual call centres on 0871 200 0171.


The Inbetweeners Effect

Tourism surge as Brits follow The Inbetweeners to Malia

With The Inbetweeners Movie hitting the big screen this week, latest figures by reveal an increase in searches to Malia, Crete, where the nation’s favorite inbetweeners – Simon, Jay, Neil and Will take a trip in pursuit of the ultimate lad’s holiday. It appears the Greek destination is becoming a hit for fellow party-goers, with searches by holidaymakers up 243% this July when compared with the same time last year.

As Brits look to emulate the epic trip of the comedy foursome living up to their reputation as the ‘socially awkward’ teens, other findings from the hotel expert reveals that despite the tightening of purse strings, Brits are looking to head overseas this summer in hope of some guaranteed sunshine. Spanish destinations Cala Millor, Mallorca and Tenerife’s San Miguel de Abona, experienced an increase in searches of 360% and 321% respectively in July, whilst Greek destination Ayios Nikolaos also saw searches rise 346%.

Crawley, West Sussex also made it into the top ten of fastest rising searched destinations in July (up 432% year on year), as jet-setters choose to stay close to Gatwick airport ahead of an early morning check-in or late landing back into the UK.

Whilst Brits are looking to head abroad for their summer holidays, the Italians and Spanish are destined to stay closest to home. With nine out of the top ten fastest rising searched destinations for Italians residing within their own borders, seven out of the top ten fastest rising destinations searched for by the Spanish are also on the mainland, up 422% and 433% respectively when compared to the same time last year.

Kate Hopcraft from, said; ‘With thousands of Brits looking for a fun and lively get away this summer, it’s no surprise people are following in the footsteps of The Inbetweeners to the party town of Malia. With Neil’s extravagant dance moves and Simon on a mission to get over his break-up with Carly, there is definitely something everyone can relate to in this latest box office hit! ’


For more information, please call:
Freyja Phillips at Frank PR on 020 7693 6999 or email
Or Kate Hopcraft,, 020 7019 2165

As part of the Expedia group which operates in all major markets, offers almost 140,000 quality hotels, B&Bs and serviced apartments worldwide. If a customer can find the same deal for less on a prepaid hotel, will match it. benefits from one of the largest hotel contracting teams in the industry negotiating the best rates for its customers, plus there are 2m reviews from users who have actually stayed in the hotels to ensure customers make an informed choice when booking. has recently launched its Welcome Rewards customer loyalty programme in the UK, where customers can earn a free night for every ten nights stayed (subject to Welcome Rewards terms and conditions as set out at won the Gold Award for best hotel booking site in Webuser magazine in February 2009. Travellers can book online or by contacting one of the multilingual call centres on 0871 200 0171.


Lights out for the bedtime story?

Research reveals 57% of children are never read to by an adult at home, despite 44% loving cosying up with their parents to a good book!

Snuggling down to a bedtime story and escaping into a world of fantasy is what childhood memories are made of, however research commissioned by the Alton Towers Resort Hotels reveals that over half of the nation's children (57%) are never read to by an adult during the average week at home. According to the findings by Britain's Greatest Escape, the widely cherished childhood routine of the bedtime story is in danger of being lost altogether, despite 44% of children admitting to loving their parents reading to them.

The study, involving over 500 six to eleven year old British children also reveals that a mere 8% are read to on a daily basis, with the majority of children (16%) only being read to once a week. Triggered by many parents being forced to juggle their professional and family life, the average reading time for children with a parent has fallen to less than a minute, with 29% experiencing as little as half a minute of reading. Less than one in ten children (9%) are able to enjoy half an hour of reading time with their parents, with the majority (12%) only getting to relish a precious ten minutes.

Whilst traditional forms of childhood entertainment are having to contend with the incessant lure of flashy gizmos, gadgets and computer games, it appears that our children's love of literature is not lost, with a surprisingly low 18% of the younger generation admitting to preferring playing computer games or watching TV over reading. In fact, nearly one third (30%) of children regard reading as the best one-on-one time they get with their parents, with the same number wishing their parents were able to spend more time reading to them.

The small and silver screen have undoubtedly had their influence on children's literary awareness, with books adapted for TV and film soaring past their classic counterparts in being the most recognised. Less than half the respondents had heard of children's classic, Robinson Crusoe (45%) whereas 98% and 95% were familiar with Horrid Henry and Harry Potter respectively. In terms of fictional characters, cartoon and computer animated Spongebob Squarepants (96%) and Shrek (96%) were the most recognised, ahead of Treasure Island's Long John Silver (55%) and the Railway Children's Roberta Phyllis with a mere 11%.

David Steel, Hotels Director at the Alton Towers Resort commented: "It's particularly striking to discover the amount of children who love being read to versus those who actually experience reading time with their parents. Given that nearly a third of children feel reading is the best one-on-one time they get with their parents, the Alton Towers Resort Hotels are encouraging parents to 'take a leaf out of their children's books' by offering a unique bedtime reading service on request* to help trigger the bonding benefits of reading at bedtime.”

Overnight packages at the Resort start from just £29.75 per person* per night and include a scrumptious breakfast and fantastical entertainment. The Alton Towers Resort’s bedtime reading service is available on request at the time of booking.** For the Theme Park, family prices start from £104.00 plus VAT for a two day family of four ticket when booked in advance at


For more information please contact Freyja Phillips or Harriet Ray at Frank PR on 0207 693 6999 or e-mail

*Based on four people sharing. Subject to availability
**Subject to availability

MERLIN ENTERTAINMENTS is the leading name in location-based, family entertainment, and has seen the most successful and dynamic growth of any company in the sector over the last five years. Europe’s Number 1 and the world’s second-largest visitor attraction operator, Merlin now operates over 74 attractions, six hotels/two holiday villages in 17 countries and across four continents. The company aims to deliver memorable and rewarding experiences to its 43.6 million visitors worldwide, through its iconic global and local brands, and the commitment and passion of its managers and more than 15,000 employees. Merlin Entertainments operates the following attractions - SEA LIFE, Madame Tussauds, LEGOLAND, The EDF Energy London Eye, Dungeons, Gardaland, LEGOLAND Discovery Centres, Alton Towers Resort, Warwick Castle, Thorpe Park, Chessington World of Adventures Resort, Heide Park, Earth Explorer, Sydney Aquarium, Sydney Wildlife World, Sydney Tower Observatory and Skywalk, Kelly Tarlton’s Antarctic Encounter Underwater World, Oceanworld Manly and Hamilton Island Koala Gallery. All brands which are distinctive, challenging and innovative – and which have great potential for growth in the future. Visit for more information.


Banrock Station creates the world’s first living billboard made entirely of British flowers in support of Natural England

Shoppers in London were treated to quite a sight today, as a billboard made entirely of living flowers was revealed outside the Westfield Shopping Centre.

The interactive board has been created by environmentally- focused wine brand Banrock Station to mark the launch of their new special edition wines, proceeds of which will help Banrock Station work with Natural England to preserve 2,100 acres of British wildflower meadows. The billboard, made up of over 800 native British plants and from 14 different species took over two months to grow and more than 12 hours to install.

Depicting a bottle of wine pouring out a fountain of flora; the sun, butterflies and bees have all been intricately detailed using a variety of beautiful blooms. An interactive pump features as part of the installation, allowing passers-by to adopt the brand’s ethos of ‘giving nature a helping hand’ by watering the flowers to help them grow.

The hope is that the board will highlight the crucial role wildflowers play in the eco system, providing the nectar and pollen needed by vital wildlife to prosper and in turn pollinate up to one third of the food we eat.

The brand specifically supports causes that give something back to the earth and has backed almost 100 environmental projects since 1994. Through these special edition wines, Banrock Station is giving £30,000 to Natural England who will use the funds on their National Nature Reserves to help protect and enhance wildflower meadows across Britain.

Simon Huguet, Principal Adviser for National Nature Reserves at Natural England said; “We are delighted to work with Banrock Station and thrilled at their support for wildflower meadows on our National Nature Reserves. Home to many rare plants, traditional meadows provide vital habitat for birds, bees and small animals and are wonderful places to visit. In recent years they have become a rare sight across our countryside and it is great to see these special places getting a helping hand.”
Kate Thorn, Environment Manager at Banrock Station added, “We are always keen to support projects that share our philosophy of enhancing the natural environment and giving something back to nature. ‘Good Earth, Fine Wine’ is key to our philosophy so taking care of the environment is crucial to making our great wine. We understand how small changes to our land can have a big impact upon our environment and there seemed no better way to showcase the plight of the humble wildflower than by displaying these beautiful plants directly as part of our glorious living billboard.”

The billboard shall remain on display for two weeks and, once removed, all the wildflowers will be replanted in local communities to ensure they continue to grow and flourish long after the activity is completed. The billboard structure is made of 80% recycled material and will also be reused for future projects, while the printed elements are all fully bio-degradable.

For more information about Banrock Station wines please visit: or
Banrock Station Special Edition wines are available at Morrisons for RRP £6.49

Notes to Editors:
About Banrock Station:
• Banrock Station is no stranger to eco-friendly deeds; since 1994 the wine brand has donated more than £2.5 million to 98 environmental projects in 13 countries. The winery uses the conservation expertise acquired from restoring the natural land of its own Australian vineyards to select which projects to support.

• 90% of UK sales of Banrock Station are from wines bottled in the UK. Analysis shows that shipping wine in bulk to bottle in the UK reduces CO2 emissions by 164g per 75cl bottle or 38% when compared against bottling at source. (Wrap: The life cycle emissions of wine imported to the UK. Mar 07)
• The Banrock Station core range uses a lighter weight glass. The impact of light weighting from the transportation stages when importing bottled wine from Australia is up to a 20% reduction on CO2. (Wrap: The life cycle emissions of wine imported to the UK. Mar 07)
• The Wine and Wetland Centre at Banrock Station uses as little energy as possible. The building is designed to catch cool breezes from the lagoon and the roof has double the usual amount of insulation to retain heat in winter, and to maintain a cool temperature during hot summers.
• For more information about Banrock Station Wines please visit or
About the Banrock Station Living Billboard:
• The billboard is made of 80% post-industrial recycled material
• All plants and soil will be up-cycled to new locations once the installation is removed
• The printed elements use Bio Print products - this unique product is fully bio-degradable; the materials attract microbes from the earth allowing them to break down completely in 9 months in compost and five years in landfill.
• All elements of the water pump will be broken down and re-used in future projects

Tasting notes and serving suggestions:

Banrock Station Chardonnay

The fine wines of Banrock Station are loving crafted to deliver pure fruit expression and enjoyment.
Enjoy flavours of citrus peach and vanilla. A soft delicate Chardonnay with a light oak influence adding a touch of complexity. Enjoy served with fresh fish or chicken salad.

Banrock Station Cabernet Merlot

The fine wines of Banrock Station are loving crafted to deliver pure fruit expression and enjoyment.
A lively fruity red with flavours of ripe plum and blackcurrant. Oak influence adds a touch of delicate swe etness and complexity. Enjoy served with rich creamy pasta or blue cheese.

About Natural England:

Natural England is the government’s independent adviser on the natural environment. Established in 2006 our work is focused on enhancing England’s wildlife and landscapes and maximising the benefits they bring to the public.
• Natural England establish and care for England’s main wildlife and geological sites, ensuring that over 4,000 National Nature Reserves and Sites of Special Scientific Interest are looked after and improved.
• Natural England work to ensure that England’s landscapes are effectively protected, designating England’s National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and advising widely on their conservation.
• Natural England run Environmental Stewardship and other green farming schemes that deliver over £400 million a year to farmers and landowners, enabling them to enhance the natural environment across two thirds of England’s farmland.
• Natural England fund, manage, and provide scientific expertise for hundreds of conservation projects each year, improving the prospects for thousands of England’s species and habitats.
• Natural England promote access to the wider countryside, helping establish National Trails and coastal trails and ensuring that the public can enjoy and benefit from them
National Nature Reserves (NNRs) are some of the very finest sites in England for wildlife and geology, and provide great opportunities for people to experience nature. They protect the special wildlife habitats, species and geological features that occur there. These features are of national and often international importance, and many NNRs are important for study and research. Many are fully open throughout the year and free to visit. There are 224 throughout England.
Natural England manages a total of about 750ha of lowland and upland hay meadows across 25 sites. The funds will help to pay for vital survey work, restoration, public events and equipment

Monday, 15 August 2011



Robbie Savage to set World Record for most football league shirts worn at once

IT’S UNLIKELY that Robbie Savage will ever wear a football shirt again professionally but the 36-year-old legend will still need some pre-season training as he attempts to set the World Record for the most football league shirts worn at once.

Savage brought his playing career to an end last season but to celebrate the start of 2011/12 season, the Welshman has teamed up with npower’s Club 72 initiative to wear a football shirt from every single football league club, and in doing so setting the record for most amount of football league shirts worn at one time.

In a league career spanning seventeen years, there’s not many team strips that Savage hasn’t encoutered before but with newly promoted AFC Wimbledon and Crawley Town both joining the league for the first time, there will be at least two shirts he won’t have seen before.

As well as donning the colours once again of some of his previous clubs such as Derby County and Leicester City, Savage will also model some real blasts from the past with Football League Shirts some fans would be pleased to forget!

On the record attempt, Savage said; ‘It seems quite an easy challenge at first glance but having seen photos of similar attempts I’m actually a little worried now!

Throughout my playing career I was fortunate enough to weigh exactly the same in my final season at Derby as when I first started out with Crewe Alexandra - I certainly don't think there is any room to be carrying any extra pounds for this challenge.

The t-shirts’ collective weight will obviously put my shoulders and back under a lot of pressure and heat stroke is also something else to consider.

‘Naturally I’m hugely proud of my playing career and this is a great way to end it. If I break the record, I expect that makes me the only player in the world to wear every single npower Football League team strip.’

The record attempt is to celebrate the launch of npower’s Club 72 initiative which will be an interactive platform for football supporters to chart their own performance throughout the season.

Launching on the 6th August to coincide with the start of the 2011/12 season, Club 72 will offer fans the chance to document their own performance in terms of attending football league games at The site will allow fans to record the Football League stadiums they’ve been to and show how far they’ll go to follow the beautiful game. For every stadium visited, you’ll be awarded a virtual badge as well as bonus points for being a “lucky charm” (seeing three victories in a row) and reaching certain milestones such as “all Championship grounds visited”.


For further information please contact the npower press office at Frank
Ourhai Turkhan and Greg Double
0207 693 6999/

Notes to Editors
About npower
• npower is one of the UK's largest electricity suppliers and has 6.6 million customer accounts across the UK.
• npower sponsors The Football League
• npower has been awarded platinum status in Business in the Community’s CR Index and is one of twenty-nine companies to have achieved the CommunityMark since its launch. All CommunityMark achievers have been recognised for demonstrating excellence in their holistic and strategic approach to community investment.

Wednesday, 10 August 2011


When I Grow Up I Want To Be A …….Teacher

New research highlights the role of the teacher and how it has become the job of choice for the next generation of adults

In a society of high paid bankers and even higher paid sportsmen, the teaching profession was today outlined as the most sort-after job for the next generation of adults.

To mark the launch of the new film ‘That’s What I Am’ new research results, which questioned 1,073 pupils aged 6-15 years from across the UK, found a third of respondents (31%) selected being a teacher as the profession of choice. In comparison to just 4% of pupils who wanted to be reality TV stars and 8% who wanted to be a doctor or nurse. Bankers were the least favoured roles with only 2%.

The reasons for the career choice were down to a teacher’s ability to nurture imagination, confidence and good behaviour, alongside their trustworthiness. The research also found that half (50%) of the pupils surveyed trusted their teacher more than their friends, grandparents and even parents, with 44% regularly confiding in their teacher, ahead of their parents on topics such as, bullying, making friends and relationships

Whilst one in five (21%) did believe their parent’s role was to give them the best start in life, instilling good behaviour, this figure is dwarfed by the 51% of pupils who felt the teacher was better placed to help them achieve this. The leading role however, that pupils did attribute to their parents, are:
• The Bank– 1 in 3 (34%) children believed the role of the parent was to give them pocket money
• The Encyclopaedia- 1 in 4 (25%) children felt their parents were there to help them do their homework
• The Taxi Service – 1 in 3 (32%) children see their parents as a way of helping them to socialise with their friends

Kelly Steeples, voted best teacher in 2010 by The Pearson’s Teaching Award says, “The role of the teacher is exceptionally important for the future of our children, and since the profession began we have striven to not only be good tutors, but good role models too. It’s great that so many young children now see working as a teacher as aspirational as being a footballer or doctor.”

The research was carried out to mark the release of WWE Studios film ‘That’s What I Am’ starring Ed Harris, a wise and nurturing teacher helping two students define the meaning of friendship and encouraging the right moral choices, all set in a 1960s backdrop of social change.

‘That’s What I Am’ released on DVD and Blu-Ray from 11th July, and will be available at all good retailers and online at A percentage of the proceeds from the sale of each DVD will also go to Beatbullying, the UK’s leading anti-bullying charity.

Notes to Editor

Survey sample – 1073 pupils aged 6-15 years old
Survey date – 13th – 20th June

The best jobs (in order of preference)
1. Teacher – 31%
2. Nurse/doctor – 23%
3. Sportsman/woman – 20%
4. Postman – 12%
5. Other – 5%
6. Reality TV star – 4%
7. Lorry driver – 3%
8. Banker – 2%

Clear Vision Ltd (Corporate)
Clear Vision Ltd is one of the UK’s leading home entertainment publishing companies with an extensive international distribution network covering Europe, the Middle East and South Africa. Operating for over 20 years, Clear Vision is the exclusive DVD licensee for World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE), Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), National Basketball Association (NBA), Gaiam, Marvel’s classic animated TV series and a number of other titles. Via its labels Clear Vision, Silver Vision and FightDVD, the company sells both direct to consumers and through a variety of retail outlets. For further information on Clear Vision visit Clear Vision Ltd, Reg. No. 282 2227, The Lighthouse, 1 Aden Road, Enfield, EN3 7SE.

The Pearson Teaching Awards
The Pearson Teaching Awards is an independent charity founded in 1997 by Lord David Puttnam CBE. The organisation works in education to support young people in achieving their potential through 3 main projects:

The “Thank-a-Teacher” campaign; giving young people a voice by enabling them publicly to thank a teacher who has made a significant difference in their lives. The campaign recognises teachers who are having a great impact on the life chances of young people in the UK

The Pearson Teaching Awards: this prestigious award programme identifies and celebrates exceptional teachers who are achieving outstanding results, often in the most challenging circumstances. The UK final is filmed and broadcast by the BBC

Sharing Expertise; those who win Teaching Awards are leaders in their profession. On winning, they join the alumni of distinguished Teaching Award fellows who share their successful strategies across the profession through the Teaching Awards winners’ network. The Teaching Awards Network Database and On-Line Community is a significant development in our programme of Sharing Expertise. For further information go to email or telephone 0203 1171 908

Tuesday, 9 August 2011




Our “Little One-ders” Are Getting What They Want But Not Always What They Need

British toddlers spend longer staring at a screen each day than they do eating their meals and more time in a car than at a children’s playground, according to a first of its kind ‘Census’ giving a snapshot into the lives of our one to three years olds, released today (9 August 2011).

The ‘Census’ was commissioned by, a website for parents seeking information about toddler nutrition and the role of Growing Up Milk within a healthy, balanced diet.

Busy Social & Cultural Lives
Results reveal our pre-schoolers are a busy lot, with their social development a top priority for parents. The average toddler has a circle of friends to rival their mum’s, spends three hours a day at nursery and 30 minutes visiting family. On top of that, they devote 23 minutes a day to using a computer or iPad, 40 minutes a day to watching TV, 26 minutes on messy play and 25 minutes listening to stories.

Toddlers are also quids-in when it comes to lifestyle, with the average toddler having nearly a four-figure sum spent annually on their activities/classes, almost £180 on toys and boasting a wardrobe of designer clothes. However, even though, “pound for pound”, they need more energy and nutrients than their parents, the survey results suggest that toddlers’ diets aren’t getting the same attention as other aspects of their lives – despite nutrition’s important role in helping growth and development. The ‘Census’ gives some fresh perspective on “the state of the toddler nation’s plates”, with eight out of ten parents questioned unaware that toddlers have different nutritional needs to the rest of the family.

Toddlers’ diets are ‘more burgers than broccoli’
Fast and convenience foods play a significant role in the diet. Typically, today’s toddler is more likely to have eaten a burger than broccoli. 60 per cent have been to a fast food restaurant, according to the new figures and the vast majority of toddlers questioned had tried chips (86%), pizza (80%) and chicken nuggets (68%). This echoes previous data from the Infant and Toddler Forum, which revealed 29 per cent of toddlers eat a takeaway once a week and that 81% of toddlers are regularly given ready-made adults foods likely to be high in fat, sugar and salt.

Report co-author Amanda Ursell comments, “This age group is poorly defined, with conflicting data and little attention is paid to toddlers’ unique nutritional needs. One to three year olds go through a period of such extraordinary growth and development that we should be thinking of them not just as toddlers but as ‘Little One-ders’.”

“Although their lifestyles can rival our own, toddlers are not mini-adults. Their bodies, brains and bones are developing at an amazing rate and they need the right nutrition to fuel this,” she says

Friday, 5 August 2011




Lord Sugar’s Amscreen, the UK’s largest nationwide Digital out of Home network owner, today announced that it has acquired the entire Sales and Marketing Operation of Digicom, the specialist Digital out of Home Sales house founded two years ago by Tom Goddard, who now becomes Deputy Chairman and Shareholder of Amscreen and will support CEO Simon Sugar in the key areas of Media Sales and Development.

The move is part of Amscreen’s strategic plan to accelerate its U.K. growth and provide a solid platform for expansion into Europe. It comes as Amscreen expands its forecourt network overseas with a recently announced deal with BP Europe which is expected to see their audience initially increase to 40 million a week. In just two years Amscreen has successfully developed award-winning Digital Signage Networks in major forecourt, convenience, travel and health environments. Amscreen has worked alongside Digicom as its exclusive Sales partner during the expansion of its network, which currently broadcasts on over 3000 screens nationwide to a UK audience of 25 million a week.

Simon Sugar, Amscreen’s Chief Executive said “I am very excited about us acquiring Digicom and look forward to working closely with Chris Forrester and his team, who becomes Amscreen’s European Managing Director of Sales & Marketing and will help us to further develop the business. Having become market leaders in the UK, we want to achieve the same across Europe and bringing Digicom in-house will allow us to replicate our UK success internationally”.

Tom Goddard, Digicom’s Executive Chairman said “There can be no finer endorsement of one’s work than when a valued and respected client invites you to join their business. The consolidation of our interests will provide the back-bone of our planned roll out into Europe”.

End/August 2011

Notes to Editors
Tom Goddard has spent most of his career in media, running a succession of out of home businesses including Maiden Outdoor and CBS International.
He currently serves as Chairman on the Boards of Ocean Outdoor and Bravo outdoor in Ireland.
Chris Forrester has over 15 years of experience across magazines, press, online and out of home markets, working in some of the UK’s most respected media companies.
Most recently worked in the outdoor sector at CBS Outdoor and currently Managing Director at Tom Goddard’s digital Out of Home start-up Digicom.
Under his tenure Digicom has quickly developed into a company at the forefront of the Digital Out of Home industry with a cutting edge style and a creative and pioneering approach to business.’

Thursday, 4 August 2011



Tia Maria is the perfect drink for any cocktail occasion, whether heading off for an afternoon in the pub, eating at the finest restaurant or hitting a nightclub. Made to the original Caribbean recipe, this rich dark liqueur can be mixed with a whole host of flavours from ginger beer right through to chilli and even sambuca.

Tia Maria’s distinctive aroma of freshly grounded coffee with delicate hints of chocolate and exotic vanilla, mean it’s the perfect ingredient to pack cocktails full of flavour. The alcohol brand has recently been showcasing the following sumptuous cocktails to highlight the mixibility of Tia Maria and the occasions where one might drink it.

These can be found in the cocktail booklet and some highlights are below
For more information, images or cocktails please contact Katie Bawler or Julie-Anne Power at Frank PR on 0207 693 6999 or

Cocktail Bar Suggestions
Maria L’Orange
This fresh and fruity cocktail is perfect to enjoy with friends on a night out. Fusing Tia Maria, triple sec, orange and lemon juice and passion fruit it tastes just like a chocolate orange
Keep the Faith
This luxurious cocktail was designed exclusively for Tia Maria by Paloma Faith to reflect her fiery yet playful nature. Made with Tia Maria, rich chocolate liqueur and a whole chilli this winter warmer certainly packs a punch.

At the Pub Suggestion
Jamaican Swizzle
This twist on a dark and stormy mixes Tia Maria, dark rum and ginger beer for a refreshing long drink that tastes just like Pimms. The perfect drink to enjoy in a beer garden.

Clubbing Suggestion
A classic twist on a Mojito, this cocktail adds Tia Maria for a little extra kick. A refreshing drink to enjoy whilst dancing the night away with friends

Dinner Date
Dark Desire
This creamy cocktail is the perfect indulgence to enjoy with good food and good company. Made with Tia Maria, scotch whisky, ice cream and a little sprinkling of chocolate on top for a little treat.

Notes to Editors
Tia Maria cocktail recipes
Cocktail Bar
(Created exclusively with Paloma Faith for Tia Maria)
¾ parts Tia Maria
1 part dark chocolate liqueur
¾ parts sugar syrup
5 – 6 slices of whole red chilli
Add all the ingredients into a shaker with lots of ice.
Shake well & strain into a martini glass.
Make a cut on the side of the whole red chilli, place on the rim of the glass.
Extra chilli can be added for more spice!

¾ parts Tia Maria
¾ parts triple sec
1 bar spoon passion fruit syrup
½ parts lemon juice
1 ½ parts fresh orange juice
Combine all the ingredients together with crushed ice in a boston and shake.
Pour into a martini glass.
Garnish with a lemon twist

1 part coconut milk
Combine all ingredients together with crushed ice in a blender
Blend until smooth
Pour into a snifter glass.
Top up with whipped cream and garnish with a slice of pineapple

At the Pub

1 part Tia Maria
1 part dark rum
2 parts ginger ale/ginger beer
¾ parts lemon juice
1 dash Angostura
Shake the Tia Maria, dark rum, lemon juice and Angostura with ice then top up with ginger ale.

1½ oz Tia Maria
1½ oz white rum
½ oz lemon juice
3 oz soda
Muddle mint leaves, lemon juice and powdered
sugar in a highball glass, then add crushed ice and
pour in blended Tia Maria and rum.
Top up with soda.

Dinner Date

1½ oz Tia Maria
½ oz scotch whisky
1 spoon ice cream (vanilla)
1½ oz half & half
Combine all ingredients together in a blender.
Blend until smooth. Pour into a hurricane glass.
Top up with whipped cream and


SodaStream unveils 10 foot family made entirely from plastic bottles

A giant 10 foot sculpture of a family of four made entirely out of plastic bottles was erected by SodaStream in London today, to highlight the issue of plastic bottle wastage.

The Bottle Family is made up of over 827 plastic bottles, and has been created to demonstrate the large amount of plastic carbonated soft drink bottles that the average British family will use in one year.

The striking sculpture was designed and created by artist Bamber Hawes and aims to educate consumers on the benefits of ‘precycling’ - the practice of trying to reduce waste before recycling is necessary in the first place.

Creating The Bottle Family was no mean feat – being made up of 827 different plastic bottles it took approximately 400 hours to complete and involved a team of five in order to complete the top of the 10 foot father’s head.

Artist Bamber Hawes comments, “This has been a fantastic project to work on, not only due to the scale of the sculpture but also as I’m passionate about the messaging behind the installation. The Bottle Family, is an in-your-face visual of the amount of carbonated soft drink bottle waste generated by the average British family of four each year. I was shocked to hear, and now to see just how many carbonated soft drink bottles are wasted each year and hope this will get people thinking about their own bottle waste.”

*Research commissioned by SodaStream reveals that the nation hugely underestimates the amount of bottle waste they generate; with almost half of all adults believing that their family uses between 1-5 bottles a week when the actual figure is over double that.

Fiona Hope, Managing Director of SodaStream UK says, “Environmental conscious-ness has certainly strengthened over the years but plastic is still very much a part of our everyday lives and sometimes it is hard to truly grasp how much waste we create. We hope this creation will enable people to see the extent of the issue and consider alternatives to pre-bottled carbonated soft drinks.”

On average only 100 out of every 500 plastic bottle used by an average family will be recycled, this means 80% of pre-packaged plastic bottles will end up in landfill. One SodaStream can dramatically reduce your bottle waste.

For more information or imagery, please contact Frank PR on 0207 693 6999 /
More information can be found at: find us on Facebook or come and follow us on Twitter @sodastreamuk

Notes to Editors:
*Consumer research carried out in March 2011 among a nationally representative sample of adults and children.

About SodaStream:
SodaStream manufactures home beverage carbonation systems, which enable consumers to easily transform ordinary tap water instantly into carbonated soft drinks and sparkling water. Soda makers offer a highly differentiated and innovative solution to consumers of bottled and canned carbonated soft drinks and sparkling water. Our products are environmentally friendly, cost effective, promote health and wellness, and are customizable and fun to use. In addition, our products offer convenience by eliminating the need to carry bottles home from the supermarket, to store bottles at home or to regularly dispose of empty bottles. Our products are available at more than 40,000 retail stores in 41 countries around the world.

SodaStream launched in Selfridges this July. Marking the launch into one of the world’s most high profile retailers, SodaStream installed a plastic bottle bin which contained the same number of plastic beverage bottles consumer by an average London family over 4 years.

About A World Without Bottles:
A World Without Bottles campaign aims to raise awareness of plastic bottle waste and its devastating effects on the environment. To mark the campaign launch, SodaStream introduced a Limited Edition green and white drinksmaker in specially designed packaging that highlights the campaign messages. Each purchase will be matched by a donation from SodaStream to The Water Project, which helps to make clean drinking water available to deprived communities in Africa. The World Without Bottles campaign was fronted by supermodel and keen environmentalist Erin O’Connor and aimed to educate consumers of the benefits of precycling.

Wednesday, 3 August 2011



IT’S ONE of the most recognisable brands in the country, but after taking part in Channel 4’s award-winning Undercover Boss series npower is committed to recognising its own customers more. Chief operating officer Kevin McCullough assumed the identity of unemployed ‘Tom Nixon’ to shadow employees from across the npower business in a bid to understand more about how the company supports its customers.

He experienced working life at Didcot Power Station, on the road as a Hometeam boiler engineer, joined the complaints team in a contact centre and the meter installation team.

McCullough said of his experience: “I thought this would provide a great opportunity to work alongside colleagues and find out more about their experience of working at npower.

“I met some brilliant people trying to do their very best for our company and it was humbling."

McCullough, who started his career shovelling coal aged 16, used the opportunity to learn about the business:

"For a long time I have been concerned that the energy sector takes a bashing and simply reacts to criticism and media stories - I want npower to be on the front foot more often."

“There are things we need to fix and improve but this is now the start and not the end of a process. To that effect we will be launching new social media channels that will focus on a tremendously exciting energy business as it wrestles with its many challenges."

“Most importantly though this will give our customers direct access to me and the team.”

Follow McCullough and his team at @npowerhq and on Tumblr at

About Kevin McCullough

Kevin McCullough was appointed Chief Operating Officer in March 2011. He is responsible for the Customer Services divisions of npower, heads up Health and Safety for the whole organisation and is the lead interface with UK government on all matters relating to UK generation asset operations and development. In addition to this he is Chair of Horizon Nuclear Power – the joint venture established between RWE npower and E.ON to develop nuclear power generation in the UK. He has recently been appointed Chair of the Welsh Assembly Government’s Energy & Environment Sector Panel.

Kevin joined the CEGB in 1984 and held a number of operations and engineering positions at Ferrybridge, Drax and Staythorpe coal-fired power stations and Killingholme gas-fired power station, before being appointed Production Manager at Little Barford gas-fired power station in 1996.

In 1998 Kevin became Station Manager at the company’s Midlothian CCGT power station in Dallas, Texas and in 2000 took up the position of Executive Vice President at Innogy America LLC in Chicago.

Following a move back to the UK, Kevin was Head of Integration and Business Transformation within Retail before becoming Managing Director of npower renewables in 2003. He joined the board of RWE Innogy in 2007 as Chief Operating Officer, with pan-European responsibility for on- and off-shore wind power activities. He then joined the board of RWE npower as Chief Technical Officer on 1st October 2009 taking responsibility for the Assets Division of the business.