Balsall Common resident Richard Murray is riding from London to Amsterdam in support of the charity Prostate Cancer UK.
He’s part of a team from business coaching company Elephants Child. Their Managing Director Martin Brown, lost his father-in-law to the disease.
In total the team has raised £7000 with four weeks to go. The 145-mile trip is backed by the English Football League and the League Managers Association with high-profile former players and managers such as Les Ferdinand, Terry Butcher and Simon Grayson taking part.
Balsall Common Lions Club are just one of many local organisations, residents and businesses to support the team. They have a long history of supporting prostate cancer awareness events. They are organising a prostate cancer screening session in Balsall Common this weekend, their 3rd such event. The screening takes place at St Peters Church Hall from 10am to 1pm.
Richard Murray explained: “This is a cause dear to my heart as my grandfather and uncle both lost their own battles with cancer. Prostate Cancer UK has a simple ambition – to stop men dying from this condition. I’m looking forward to getting into the saddle and raising money in support of this tremendous charity. Thanks to everyone who has supported us so far.
“I’m also desperate to raise awareness and encourage men to get themselves checked. We’re notoriously bad at visiting doctors and looking after our health. Anyone that has concerns and can’t make Saturday’s screening should book an appointment with their GP,” he added.
The trip begins on 9 June and will see around 500 riders making the two-day journey aiming to raise a total of £500,000 for the charity.
A local luxury pet bed maker has received a business boost from Retail Entrepreneur Theo Paphitis. Courtney Savannah, owner of Cosy Chic Pet Boutique, tweeted Theo about her business during ‘Small Business Sunday’ and was one of six weekly winners to gain a retweet by Theo to his 500,000 Twitter followers. The weekly initiative, set up by Theo in 2010, now has 1700 #SBS winners and supports small businesses in the UK.
Thanks to Theo’s support, Cosy Chic Pet Boutique has received a sales boost for their luxury, handmade and bespoke dog and cat beds.
Courtney said, “Being hand picked by Theo as a winner after only being in business for 9 months gave me an incredible sense of achievement and recognition for all my hard work and ideas. SBS has been a huge boost to not only my business growth and development but also my personal confidence as a designer and business owner.”
Theo Paphitis, said: “We are thrilled to welcome new #SBS members every week and highlight just how important it is to support our small businesses here in the UK. The website and Shop #SBS will also give a valuable profile to the winners chosen and I wish Cosy Chic Pet Boutique every success.”
Cosy Chic Pet Boutique is one of two businesses Courtney runs in our area. Her other business, Love Cosy Chic, has a concession in Antiques in a Barn, Old Lodge Farm, Balsall Common.
Those were just two of the amazing achievements recognised by Balsall Common Lions Club last week at their second annual celebration evening. President Dave Blakeman told the audience of the fantastic things the club has achieved recently.
Over the last five years the club has raised a total of £105 000 in our community, including £24 321.95 last year, of which 75% was spent locally.
The Lions don’t just raise money, they also donate many hours of their time – organising Bingo evenings in the Village Hall, serving meals for homeless people at the SIFA Fireside project, bulb planting, and of course ensuring Santa visits Balsall Common and surrounding areas.
Past President Andy Pemberton explained that the 41 members of Balsall Common Lions Club are part of the world’s largest service organisation. There are 1.4 million Lions in 209 countries who all work with their local communities and combine with other charities to work on global projects such as eradicating measles and preventable blindess. It is estimated that every Lion touches the lives of another 70 people annually and Balsall Common Lions Club feel they surpass that estimate, thanks to the help and support they receive locally.
Andy thanked everyone who has donated to disaster relief collections outside the Co-op, attended the Bonfire, said hello to Santa or volunteered their time.
President Dave Blakeman awarded a series of Certificates of Appreciation to local groups and organisations who help the Lions achieve as much as they do. They went to:
Berkswell and District Royal British Legion
Berkswell and Balsall Common Community Sports Association (and a donation of £1800)
Hugh Boulton, Rutrailertrained (and a donation of £100 which he gave to the local Rugby Club)
Balsall Common Village Hall (and a cheque for £1 145)
Angela Jaynes Florist
Oakes Farm Shop
Tesco Express Balsall Common
Heart of England Coop
Donations totalling £8 000 were given out on the night.
If you’ve made a New Year’s Resolution to get fit or take more exercise you don’t have to leave Balsall Common to keep it. Here’s just a few ideas of local clubs and organisations that can help.
We’re happy to add to this article so please email Claire if you have other fitness ideas we can share.
Balsall Common Run Club
Catering for adult runners of all standards from total beginners to Ultra runners, the club meets on Thursday evenings at 6.30pm and Saturday mornings at 9am. The venue is the Lant Sports and Community Centre – Meeting House Lane
There is no requirement for you to be able to run a specific pace or distance before you join, everyone is welcome.
The membership year runs from 1 January so anyone joining now will get the benefit of the full 12 months. Paul Yeoman runs the main group whilst Jill Fedeski runs a beginners/rusty runners group designed for people just starting to run or coming back to running after a break. Anyone who wants more information can email Jill. email@example.com
Embrace, run by local resident and former Heart of England student Emily Mulholland, is a great way to feel & look your best, with fun, creative & effective workouts at the Heart of England Dance studio. Starting back Tuesday 3rd January
Jaime’s Body Mind Yoga in Balsall Common is an Ashtanga/ Hatha mix of yoga with the emphasis on flowing sequences. Traditionally Ashtanga is an athletically demanding style of yoga whereas hatha has more accessible postures. This combination means that there is something for everyone in the classes. All sessions take place at St Peters Church Hall and advance booking is required.
Monday evening 7.30-9 pm
Tuesday 9.15-10.45 am
Thursday 9.15-10.45 am
Friday 9.15-10.45 am
Thursday’s 11-12 am
Yoga for over 55’s or anyone recovering from injury.
Yoga for teenagers.
Tuesday evenings 7.15 – 8.45. 14-18 years. Help ease exam stress!!
Tweens class Kids age 8-12. Fridays 4-5.
Jaime also runs a monthly yin yoga workshop which is a restorative style of yoga which targets joint health. Next sessions are Sunday 22 January 4.30-7, Sunday 19 February and and Sunday 12 March.
There are also yoga and craft workshops for children aged 4-12 during school holidays and regular family sessions.
Run by the incredibly experienced Sally Morris at her studio on Balsall Street East, classes include the new Sosa workout, fun low impact dance workout that is suitable for everyone. There are a number of classes to suit every age and ability including young at heart for over 70s, dancefit high impact for every age and body blast /hiit for those wanting a high intense workout.