Thursday, 28 February 2008

News from La Redoute Celebrity Mum of the Year 2008


Suzanne Shaw crowned winner of La Redoute Celebrity Mum of the Year 2008

LONDON (February 28, 2008) The battle continues on the ice, but the nation has crowned Dancing on Ice babe Suzanne Shaw La Redoute Celebrity Mum of the Year 2008.

Suzanne has battled to be a brilliant mum after splitting from Darren Day, who is father to Corey, now three years old. Not to be held back, Suzanne is currently performing on ITV’s Dancing On Ice and is tipped as the favourite to win.

Suzanne who made her name in Popstars’ band, Hear Say, alongside fellow Celebrity Mum nominees Myleene Klass and Kym Ryder, has defied the odds to make it as the nation’s number one.

Accepting the award on Thursday morning, an overwhelmed Suzanne commented, “Being a mum can be hard work and bringing up Corey by myself wasn’t easy - as I’m sure a lot of single mothers can vouch for, but we can also vouch for that fact that being a 'mummy' is also the BEST job in the world! So to win this award is really amazing and such an honour that I want to share it with other mums everywhere, this ones for us! And Corey will be so proud too.”

It was one of the closest battles for the title in its eight years history. Suzanne beat off stiff competition from Loose Woman presenter Coleen Nolan and last year’s winner Katie Price. She also outstripped fellow popstars the Spice Girls.

Phil Crampton of La Redoute said, “We are so pleased that Suzanne Shaw has won the La Redoute Celebrity Mum of the Year Award. She is a great mother and performer, and the public have shown through their voting that she is a well deserved winner. No matter what happens on the ice, Suzanne is already Britain’s number one mum.”

The top five rankings for La Redoute Celebrity Mum of the Year, as voted by the Great British public, and their share of the total vote were as follows:
1st Suzanne Shaw (28%)
2nd Coleen Nolan (25%)
3rd Myleene Klass (17%)
4th Katie Price (11%)
5th Emma Bunton (6%)

Other nominees included Mel B, Heather Mills-McCartney, Victoria Beckham, Charlotte Church, Alex Curran, Kate Garraway, Kate Moss, and Kym Ryder.

CAPTION: Suzanne Shaw skates to victory winning the La Redoute Celebrity Mum of the Year Award 2008, pictured with Corey, aged 3.

For further information please contact or on 0207 693 6999

Wednesday, 20 February 2008

News from Virgin Media

Breakneck Britain: Brits are now “racing through life”

Brits are now living life faster than ever, leading to fears from a leading psychologist that people are “heading for meltdown” if they don’t think about changing their habits.

According to research released today by Virgin Media, 17% of us spend our entire monthly salary in the first week of the month, 1 in 5 (20%) people eat their evening meal in ten minutes or less and a just under third of us (30%) spend less than 20 minutes having sex.

The survey of just under 2,000 adults was conducted to mark Virgin Media’s free 4Mb to 10Mb broadband upgrade for customers. The research, looking into the speed at which Brits complete a range of everyday tasks including eating, spending and having sex, reveals we as a nation are doing things quicker than ever before and demanding instant gratification.

Those in the North East have topped the poll as the ‘fastest people in Britain’, with leisurely London coming bottom.

Amongst other speedy habits, Geordies top the poll of the nation’s fastest lovers with 16% spending 10 minutes or less having sex and one of the quickest spenders with 25% frittering their salary within a week of being paid (a shocking 8% spend it all on pay day!). Conversely, in stark contrast to the fast-paced stereotype given to the capital, Londoners take longer than anyone else to travel to work and are amongst the slowest lovers and taking longer to start a family.

Speedy Salary Spenders

Along with Geordies splashing their cash in record time, the research also reveals 46% of Brits run out of money before pay day with half of these running out after only two weeks. It’s the frugal Yorkshire folk who keep a tight hold of the purse strings with 50% of people claiming their salary lasts until the end of the month followed by the South West and Scotland.

Rapid Romeos

Sex is also something that Brits are rushing with almost one in three (30%) doing the deed in 20 minutes or less. Once again Geordies come on top with 3% admitting they spend less than two minutes having sex and one in six spend no longer than 10 minutes in the throes of passion. The East Midlands (14%) and North West (13%) follow as speedy lovers, whilst Brummies spend the most time in the sack with a loved one with 14% regularly making love for over 45 minutes.

Express Eaters

The British are known for their love of food but when it comes to eating, the research reveals we are desperate for fast food. In stark contrast to our European neighbours, 20% of people spend 10 minutes or less eating a typical evening meal and an alarming 48% spend up to 15 minutes. People in the East Midlands are the nation’s fastest eaters with 56% finishing their meal within 15 minutes, followed by 55% of Welsh and 53% of Scots. Once again it’s those in Yorkshire who are the slowest eaters with 9% spending over 30 minutes eating an evening meal.

Renowned psychologist Honey Langcaster-James says, “From rushing down our meals to squeezing love-making into the shortest possible time frame, we seem to now be racing through life at a crazy pace. The question we have to ask ourselves is ‘Where is this going to end?’ In a few years time are we going to see ourselves spending even less time with loved ones and bolting down meals in just a few seconds? There is a real danger that people are heading for meltdown unless we slow down and realise that there are only so many hours in the day in which to get everything done.”

James Kydd, managing director of brand and marketing at Virgin Media added, “Our research shows we are now doing things at an alarming rate and it’s clear Brits have an obsession with speed. With our free broadband upgrade programme from 4Mb to 10Mb, we are keeping up with the pace of the nation by providing customers with more than double the speed of their current package to ensure their internet connection is one thing that doesn’t slow them down.”


The nation’s fastest spenders:

Percentage (who spend salary within a week of getting paid)

North East

East Midlands


North West

West Midlands

South East



South West



The nation’s fastest lovers:

Percentage (who spend 10 minutes or less having sex)

North East

East Midlands


North West

South West




South East

West Midlands


The nation’s fastest eaters:

Percentage (who spend 15 minutes or less eating an evening meal)

East Midlands



South East

South West


North East

North West

West Midlands



Further breakdowns are available on:

- How fast Britons drive

- Speed of Commuting

- Speed at which Brits start a family

- Speed at which Brits get engaged

All figures, unless otherwise stated, are from YouGov Plc. Total sample size was 1,968 adults. Fieldwork was undertaken between 8th and 11th February 2008. The survey was carried out online. The figures have been weighted and are representative of all GB adults (aged 18+).

Media contacts
Katie Raven, Frank PR, 020 7693 6999 or
David Fraser, Frank PR, 020 7693 6999 or

To find out more about Virgin Media’s products and service visit or call 0800 052 2525.


Notes to editors
Virgin Media is an innovative and pioneering UK entertainment and communications business. For the first time consumers can get everything they need from one company - the UK's only quad play of TV, broadband, phone and mobile plus the most advanced TV on demand service available, the UK’s first high definition TV service and V+, our high specification personal video recorder. We're the UK’s largest residential broadband provider, the largest virtual mobile network operator and the second largest provider of pay TV and home phone.
Virgin Media owns two content businesses - Virgin Media Television (VMTV) and sit-up. VMTV owns seven entertainment channels – Virgin1, Living, Living 2, Bravo, Bravo 2, Challenge, and Trouble - and is a 50% partner in UKTV which consists of nine channels including Dave, UKTV Gold and UKTV History. sit-up runs retail TV channels bid tv, price-drop tv and speed auctiontv.

Virgin Media is the largest Virgin company in the world and has almost 10 million customers. To find out more visit

News from La Redoute Celebrity Mum of the Year


THEY’RE at war on stage and off as the Spice Girls battle to take the La Redoute Celebrity Mum of the Year title.

Victoria, Geri, Mel B and Emma have all been short listed by the public for this year’s coveted La Redoute Celebrity Mum of the Year award. The Spice Girls gained praise as the ultimate working mums as they’ve jetted their biggest supporters, their kids, all over the world on tour.

But they face stiff competition from other pop parents with all the former Hear‘Say girls - Myleene Klass, Suzanne Shaw and Kym Rider – nominated too.

Despite recent revelations, last year’s Celebrity Mum of the Year winner Katie Price has made the list. However, twice winner of the title, Kerry Katona, is a notable absentee.

In the eighth year of the prestigious award, headline-grabbing mums have won the nation’s hearts. Over 12,000 votes have already been logged on creating a short list of 15 famous mums.

Brits have been singing the praises of soprano Charlotte Church as she has tackled settling down after the birth of Ruby. While, chief WAG Alex Curran, who recently defended her children against burglars, also makes the list.


The women jostling for the title at present are (in no particular order):

1. Mel B
2. Victoria Beckham
3. Fern Britton
4. Emma Bunton
5. Charlotte Church
6. Alex Curran
7. Kate Garraway
8. Geri Halliwell
9. Myleene Klass
10. Heather Mills-McCartney
11. Kate Moss
12. Coleen Nolan
13. Katie Price
14. Kym Rider
15. Suzanne Shaw

Members of the public have swamped since the nominations opened three weeks ago. The La Redoute Celebrity Mum Of The Year Award aims to reward the celebrity mum who has impressed the public by balancing a hectic public life with the demands of parenting.

Britain has until midnight on February 26th to vote for its celebrity mum from the short listed top 15 by registering nominations at

The winner will be presented with their Award at an exclusive presentation ceremony in London on February 28th at London’s Grosvenor House Hotel.


For more information, contact:
Lucy Hart / Jamie Kaye / Fiona Robinson at Frank PR / /
Telephone: 0207 693 6999
Mobile: 07716 882 625 / 07767 824 547

News from Smarties

Nestlé Brings Back SMARTIES Favourite

In 2007 we were graced with an array of comebacks from a bygone era: Take That, The Spice Girls, Prince, Boyzone and even Led Zeppelin! Leading the trend for 2008 is another blast from the past - the celebrated Blue SMARTIE.

This February, after nearly three years’ absence, the favourite returns to rejoin its Green, Red, Orange, Pink, Brown, Yellow and Violet friends as part of a SMARTIES line up with no artificial colours.

In 2005 Blue was banished from the newly designed Hexatube as part of Nestlé’s commitment to make SMARTIES free from artificial colours. Its removal sparked a consumer outrage with thousands of SMARTIE lovers petitioning Nestlé to ‘Bring Back Blue’.

So, after years of scouring the globe for a solution, Nestlé has found a way to create the much-loved variety with no artificial colours and flavours. This has been done by extracting the blue colouring from a seaweed called Spirulina found in many of the world’s oceans.

Michelle Roberts, Brand Manager for Smarties said: “Nestle UK is committed to ensuring its children's confectionery brands have no artificial colours or flavours. Due to this Blue Smarties were removed in 2006. We are now delighted to have found a solution that allows us to bring back blue Smarties with no artificial colours and flavours, just like the rest of the Smarties range.”

Originally introduced in 1989, the blue sweet quickly became a firm favourite with confectionery fans across the UK and remained a fully-fledged member of the SMARTIES family for over fifteen years.

Nearly two decades after Blue was first launched, a genuine fan base still exists with over 20 Facebook groups and nearly 2,000 members asking what happened to Blue and demanding its return.

From this February, Blue will join the “no artificial colours and flavours” SMARTIE family which have been enjoyed by consumers across the UK since 2006.

Notes to Editors
• Blue is Back SMARTIES packs will be in stores from February 2008
• SMARTIES are available in the following formats
o Hexatube: 38g - 175 kcal per tube (10% of child's GDA)
o Multi-pack: 5 x 38g Hexatubes
o Minis: approx 18 units per bag – 66 kcal per unit (4% of child's GDA)
o Sharing bags: 150g packs – 171 kcal per 1/4 pack (10% of child's GDA)

For more information on SMARTIES visit

About Nestlé in the UK
Nestlé has approximately 5,500 employees across 23 sites and comprises: Nestlé UK (Food & Beverage, Confectionery and Food Services), Nestlé Ireland, Nestlé Purina Petcare, Nestlé Waters, Nestlé POWWOW, Cereal Partners UK (a joint venture with General Mills) and Lactalis-Nestlé Chilled Dairy (a joint venture with Lactalis).

In the UK, the company manufactures some of Nestlé’s most popular and iconic brands, including KitKat (the UK’s No 1 selling biscuit), Quality Street, Nescafé, Shredded Wheat, Buxton Water, Ski and Friskies.

For more information on Nestlé in the UK, click on the following link:

Tuesday, 19 February 2008

News from Make Your Mark


Women living in and around Bristol, Norwich and Wirral are about to experience a totally new kind of fitness. Toned arms, taught tummies and firm thighs are old hat; pumped up profits, energetic turnover and a strong client portfolio is where it’s really at in 2008.

The Women’s Business Workout is coming to these UK locations (Bristol, 5 March; Wirral, 12 March; Norwich, 13 March) coordinated by Spark, the Women’s Enterprise Ambassador Network, which brings together successful entrepreneurs and enterprise champions across the UK to encourage women to recognise that business is for them.

Attendees of the events can expect to walk away with the right information, contacts, tools and most importantly mindset they need to start, improve or grow a business.

Each woman will receive their own tailored ‘Business Fitness Plan’ containing a workout schedule of sessions led by business experts for the day ahead. For example a typical fitness plan might include ‘Fitness Phobe or Fanatic’ – a class that determines what kind of entrepreneur you are, followed by ‘Low Energy, High Impact PR’, teaching the secrets of good publicity on the smallest of budgets. And finally, some serious number crunches in the ‘Getting Your Finances into Shape’ class.

The highlight of the day is an invaluable opportunity to experience a one-to-one assessment session with a ‘Fitness Guru’, individuals the women feel can help them the most; be it business advisors, accountants or lawyers.

Alex Ritchie from Make Your Mark, the organisation coordinating Spark, the Women’s Enterprise Ambassador Network, comments; “These UK regions are already home to many successful female entrepreneurs – just look to your local high street for inspiration. The workout will energise and inspire more women to go out and grab opportunities whilst also connecting them to like-minded others to make their dreams become a reality.”

To register for a place at the events please log onto and follow the registration process.

- ENDS -

Notes to Editors

More on Spark, The Women’s Enterprise Ambassadors Network

Spark, the Women’s Enterprise Ambassadors Network, brings together successful entrepreneurs and enterprise champions across the UK to encourage women to recognise that business is for them. There are already over 1,000 Spark Ambassadors committed to telling their inspiring stories via events, school visits and the media. The network is co-ordinated by Make Your Mark and delivered by the Regional Development Agencies on behalf of the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform. It will inspire women to go out and grab opportunities and connect them to like-minded others to make their dreams become a reality.

Girls! Make Your Mark is part of Make Your Mark, the national campaign to create an enterprise culture in the UK. It aims to inspire young people in their teens and twenties to have ideas and make them happen. The not-for-profit campaign is backed by an unprecedented coalition of businesses, charities, education bodies and government.

It was founded by the four leading UK business membership organisations – the British Chambers of Commerce, the CBI, the Federation of Small Businesses and the Institute of Directors. Their Director Generals sit on Make Your Mark’s board. It is also supported by the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform and is endorsed by the Prime Minister, Gordon Brown.

National organisations working closely with the campaign include:
Arts Council England – Association of Colleges – Black Training and Enterprise Group – Business in the Community – Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform – Department for Children, Schools and Families - Enterprise Education Trust - Learning and Skills Council – National Council for Graduate Entrepreneurship - National Education Business Partnership Network – National Federation of Enterprise Agencies – Prowess – Quality Improvement Agency – Scottish Government – South-East England Development Agency (representing Regional Development Agencies) – Shell LiveWIRE – Social Enterprise Coalition – Specialist Schools and Academies Trust – The Prince’s Trust – UnLtd – Young Enterprise

Further information from Barclays, 2004

BUSINESSES % change in volume 00 v 04
1. Hairdressing / beauty 96%
2. Other specialist non-food retailers -26%
3. Physical well being and human health 181%
4. Takaway food shops and stalls 40%
5. Licensed and unlicensed restaurants and bars 41%
6. Other non-store 58%
7. Retail sale of clothing -2%
8. Public houses and bars 1%
9. Building cleaning 41%
10. Management and business consultancy 26%
Source: Barclays Internal Data
REGION Female Mainstream starts
(000) in the last year New firms per 1,000 females
of working age
East 6,700 11
East Midlands 12,000 10
London 23,100 10
North East 6,500 7
North West 19,700 11
South East 33,200 10
South West 20,600 15
Wales 6,900 8
West Midlands 11,800 8
Source: Barclays SME Research Team 13,900 9

News from Foot Locker

Foot Locker launches the ultimate Free Running sneaker.

Free Running has firmly established itself at the heart of urban culture; to celebrate this Foot Locker in partnership with K-Swiss has launched the exclusive Free Running collection, in Foot Locker stores nationwide from February 4th. Foot Locker has long been a supporter of emerging street fashion and culture; as a discipline, free running embodies all that Foot Locker represents; creativity, innovation and dynamism on the streets.

Inspired by this physical art where runners interact with the urban environment, Foot Locker has partnered with K-Swiss to develop the ultimate Free Running collection, in collaboration with the Free Running founder Sebastein Foucan. Foucan, Free Running champion and star of Casino Royale embodies the Free Running way of life and has lent his expertise and knowledge to the development of this unique collection for Foot Locker and K-Swiss.

Lightweight and aerodynamic, the sneaker absorbs the pressures of urban life, whether doing some fearless Free Running or just pounding the pavements.

Foot Locker brings the Free Running collection to the forefront of style in three distinctive colour ways; black with red, white on grey and yellow on black.

The Free Running collection from K-Swiss sets Foot Locker once again as the leader of sneaker originality, bringing sneaker aficionados the latest and greatest from the biggest names on the planet. With more exclusives than ever before, sneaker lovers can always get their hands on the latest in street style at Foot Locker stores across the country.

For more information, please visit


Notes to editors: The Ariake collection is available exclusively at Foot Locker from the 4th February and retails at £59.99.

Wednesday, 6 February 2008

News from Slim.Fast

Snacking is scuppering Britain's bid to beat the bulge

Research show Brits unwittingly consume at least 73,000 unnessary calories* each year, but help is at hand as the Hunger Shot minidrink, goes on sale TODAY

It may seem like ‘a little something to tide you over’, but the average woman’s daily snack attack adds an average 200* “stealth” calories a day, that’s 73,000 additional calories over the course of a year. If that snack is over and above the calories you need for the day, it could pile on a shocking 1.5 stone / 10.3kg per year, which on average amounts to an increase of 1.5 dress sizes. New research announced today reveals that almost 50% of Brits firmly believe snacking is THE reason they fail to shake off those extra pounds. But help is at hand in the form of the new Hunger Shot mini-drink, which goes on sale TODAY.

The ‘Snack-shot’ of the Nation Report has been unveiled to mark the launch of the Hunger Shot minidrink: a high protein, high fibre minidrink designed to help you want to eat less between meals. From the makers of Slim.Fast, the unique blend of fibre and protein in Hunger Shot helps you want to eat less between meals. Perfect for those moments between meals when we tend to feel a little peckish and reach for a snack. Best of all, at 54 calories per serving, Hunger Shot is 50 to 100 calories less than the most popular snacks.

Nutritionist Fiona Hunter comments, “Surveys show that we are a nation of snackers. Unfortunately snacks that people usually choose tend to be high in fat and sugar and so have unnecessary calories, which can lead to weight problems. This product provides a high protein high fibre lower calorie snack alternative designed to help people feel fuller for longer and so eat less.”

Five o’clock is snack o’clock
As a nation we are famous for elevenses and afternoon tea, yet research reveals that snack attacks are most likely to occur at 5pm, the official time when most Brits will have their hands in the biscuit tin. Yet, with over HALF (55%) of Brits admitting that they have no idea how many calories their snacks contain, it’s no wonder that as a nation, we are losing the battle of the bulge.

Snacking hotspots
With more Brits spending longer days at their desks, it’s not surprising that just under a third of respondents (29%) said they ate most of their calories at work. The main snacking hotspot, however, is right on their doorstep with 69% of Brits consuming their snacks at home.

But most surprising of all, is the nation’s ability to multi-task whilst snacking. Just over one in ten of us (11%) snack whilst doing the housework- housewives across the UK like nothing better than to blitz their home with a snack in one hand and a Hoover in the other.

Snack prevention Squad
With 75% of Brits constantly thinking about snacking throughout the day, it’s hardly surprising that we go to extreme lengths to avoid naughty nibbling. 18% of Brits drink endless cups of tea and coffee in a bid to starve off their snacking pangs, others admitted to taking exercise and even having sex in a bid to keep their hunger at bay!

When snacking occurs – reach into the fridge!
Now there’s no longer a reason to go to extreme lengths to banish the snack-attack. At 54-calories, in either Strawberry or Vanilla flavour, an individual Hunger Shot is on average, 50 to 100 calories less per serving, than the most common snack of 100 to 200 calories.

Gemma Cleland, European Brand Development Manager for Slim.Fast says, “We have been speaking to consumers about weight loss for over 20 years. Time and time again, snacking comes up as a common downfall when trying to curb the calories. As the SnackShot of the Nation report shows, British womens snacking is contributing 200 calories* unnecessary calories to their daily intake which can hinder them from achieving their weight loss goals. Our research told us that women wanted something sweet to satisfy their hunger pangs and curb their cravings for sugar. We developed Hunger Shot minidrink in response to this need. At 54 Calories, Hunger Shot is a great option with high levels of protein and fibre to help individuals feel fuller for longer.”

From the 4th February 2008, Hunger Shot will be available from Tesco, and all major supermarkets from April 2008, and can be found in the refrigerated minidrink aisle. Hunger Shot will be sold in packs of four, at a recommended retail price of £2.89.


For product samples, photography or further information, please contact:

Emma Russell / Jenny Mitton on 020 7693 6999

Notes to editors

* Based on data from the National Diet & Nutrition Survey (Henderson et al. 2003). The average woman consumes 12% of total food energy daily from foods like buns, cakes, crisps and chocolate. That is equivalent to at least 200 Calories per day or 1300 Calories per week.

Snack Shot of the Nation Report

The Snack Shot of the Nation Report questioned 1000 men and women across the UK. Ipsos Mori December 2007

Hunger Shot™

Hunger Shot™ is a delicious yogurt drink packed full of protein and fibre that helps you want to eat less between meals.

• A chilled 100ml mini drink
• Dairy based
• Available in two favours – Strawberry and Vanilla
• 54 calories per minidrink
• Sold as a 4-pack
• RRP £2.89

For stockists contact the Slim.Fast careline on 0800 587 447 or visit
Hunger Shot™ is available in Tesco now and in all other major supermarkets from April 2008.