T H E M A G A Z I N E
T H E V I C TO R I A N S E A S I D E
M AY / J U N E 2 0 1 7
A C O M M U N I T Y F O R E X PAT S B Y E X PAT S
1 FOCUS The Magazine May/June September/Octobert 2017 2015
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is time of the year is probably one of the best to be in the UK. With
longer days and better weather the late spring and early summer
months in Britain come alive with a wonderful mix of the traditional
and the new. Strolling along a Victorian seaside pier enjoying an ice
cream in the sun, digging out your racquet and heading out for a game
of tennis, exploring the beautiful Wye Valley during the Hay literary
festival or perhaps strolling through London’s modern street food
markets are a few of the suggestions we have for you in this issue of
FOCUS. And to plan a memorable night out don’t miss our roundup
of the best entertainment apps. On a more practical side, if you’re
taking a career break or are interested in technology in the classroom
we have those topics, and several others, covered in this issue.
As ever FOCUS has a full schedule of excellent events and seminars
throughout May and June. However you choose
to enjoy the warmer months ahead we hope
you’ll continue to be involved in our community
and look forward to welcoming you to an event.
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The Hay Festival page 14
The history of street food page 18
The Rules of British Etiquette page 9
4 British beaches and boardwalks
Enjoying Victorian seaside towns
9 The Rules of Engagement
Getting etiquette right
12 Anyone for tennis?
Our guide to playing and watching
20 Technology in the classroom
Unique ways to help children find
29 On your marks!
the World Athletics Championship
comes to London
Children and coding
18 Food & Drink
Street Food Walk - London’s
street food scene
14 Arts & Culture
A good read – exploring Hay, the
world’s biggest literary festival
22 Finance & Law
Living as a dependant in the UK
How to stay current during a
27 Health & Wellbeing
Combatting hair loss
31 My Favourite Things
APPs to entertain
34 Events and Seminars
36 FOCUS Sponsors
Anyone for tennis page 12
FOCUS The Magazine 3
Beaches and Boardwalks
e Victorians loved to be beside the seaside, and it is largely
thanks to them that the cult of seaside holidays is as rich and varied
as it is on the British coast today. Associations that have come
down through the centuries include childish innocence (buckets,
spades and sandcastles), nature (crabbing in rock-pools, starfish
and seaweed), simple ‘old-fashioned’ fun (donkeys, roundabouts
or Punch and Judy shows), and greasy culinary delights (fish and
chips, ice cream and rock candy). Let’s examine where past and
present collide and how you can still find a touch of Victoriana
by the sea.
Queen Victoria ruled over Britain from 1837 until her death in
1901. She bestowed her name on several generations who we
refer to as ‘e Victorians’, and what a legacy they left!
Wealthy Victorians had for years taken houses by the sea to
benefit from the fresh air and relaxed tempo. e opportunities
however for leisure became a real possibility for all people with
the Bank Holiday Act of 1871 when workers were granted four
extra days off throughout the year. is coincided with the explosion
of the railway system, making transport around the country
much easier for the emergent middle classes. Seaside resorts like
Blackpool, Broadstairs, Margate and Southend-on-Sea flourished
with the new influx of holidaymakers.
Entertainment by the sea
A typical seaside holiday featured walks along the shore, donkey
rides, bathing, band concerts, and Punch and Judy shows. In the
larger resorts, it was common to find ‘pleasure palaces’, which
combined music hall entertainment with zoos, opera houses, theatres,
aquaria, lagoons with Venetian gondolas and gondoliers,
pleasure gardens and exhibitions.
Punch and Judy, though perhaps not the most ethical of entertainments
(Punch spends a large portion of time beating Judy
with a bat) was extremely popular at the beach. is was in part
down to the mobile puppet booth, which made it easy to manoeuvre
(although later Victorian booths were elaborate affairs
that soon became simplified to the red and white striped canvas
booths in the 20th Century). Punch’s cry of “at’s the way to do
it!” became his tagline and hordes of excited children would
clamour to watch what would happen in this comical soap opera
of errors. Reflecting the dubious ethics of Punch and Judy and
possibly the changing taste in entertainment, this is something
that you see less and less at the seaside today, but it has become
engrained in the popular perception of the British seaside, and if
you’re lucky you may find a show to watch.
At a time when recorded music was still a novelty, brass bands
and 'e Bandstand' became a popular form of musical entertainment
on the seaside promenade. e bandstand (many of
which can still be found today) is traditionally round in shape
with a roof that both helped acoustics and provided shelter from
the changeable British weather.
You can find a modern version of this type of entertainment
You can find a modern version of this type of entertainment
today at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, an amusement park that
today at Blackpool Pleasure Beach, an amusement park that dates
Fish and chips are seen as typical seaside fare because it’s a quick,
easy meal that can be eaten on the go (traditionally wrapped in
yesterday’s newspaper). e first fish and chip shop was opened
in East London by a Jewish immigrant called Joseph Malin, and
outlets sprang up like wildfire after that. It was an obvious choice
for the seaside because of the abundance of local fish, and has remained
popular ever since.
Ice cream sold by a vendor was known as ‘hokey pokey’. e
4 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
The Victorian Seaside
vendors, many of whom were Italian in origin, supposedly used a
sales pitch or song involving the phrase “hokey pokey” for which
several origins have been suggested, although nothing can be
confirmed. An example of a Victorian vendor that you can still
find going strong today is Kelly’s of Cornwall, which was established
as an ice cream and fish and chips business by Joseph
Staffieri in the late 19th century after he had migrated from Italy
to St Austell in Cornwall. In the early 20th Century the business
used a horse and cart to distribute the ice cream around the
coast, and today it has grown to incorporate shops as well as mobile
vans. I guarantee that you won’t go far in Cornwall without
being able to resist buying one.
Another seaside treat with its origin in the 19th century is seaside
rock. Its origins lie in raw sugar that children were given to
suck. Reflecting the increase in trade, the price dropped in the
Victorian era and it became easier to get hold of. e inventor of
candy rock is reputed to be a man who went by the name of
Dynamite Dick, who came up with the idea while on holiday in
Blackpool, and started manufacturing brightly coloured lettered
rock in 1887. A sugar rock craftsman is called a Sugar Boiler, and
the skill can take up to 10 years to master. Rock is often up to six
feet (183cm) long before it is cut.
Did you know?
Did you know?
e slang term for a fish and chip shop is a ‘chippy’ or ‘chipper’.
e slang term for a fish & chip shop is a ‘chippy’ or ‘chipper’.
Places of interest
Brighton Palace Pier
Brighton Palace Pier has had a chequered history. It was opened
to the public in 1899, was one of the last seaside piers of the
Victorian age in England, and cost £137,000 to construct. It
survived fire, storms and World War II bombing, and still stands
today despite numerous name changes. It sports the same
Victorian ironwork, and remains the location of the biggest
funfair on the south coast (including the helter-skelter
Did you you know?
e e term ‘helter-skelter’ was was first first recorded in in October 1905, taking
taking its name its name from from the much the much older older adverb adverb meaning meaning “in confused, “in confused,
disorderly haste”. disorderly haste”.
If you head to Broadstairs in Kent in the third week of June you
may be lucky enough to encounter Queen Victoria herself promenading
the boardwalk! To celebrate the great English writer
Charles Dickens, who visited Broadstairs in Kent regularly from
1837 until 1859 and immortalised the town as “Our English
Watering Place,” the town has held an annual Dickens Festival in
June since 1937. Members of the public put on their best corsets
and parade the streets dressed as Victorians, while the town also
hosts a local production of a Dickens play. e people of
Broadstairs are clearly very proud of this connection. You’ll find a
FOCUS The Magazine 5
Lyme Regis, Cobb
pub, school and tearooms all named after Dickens. Atop the
great hill overlooking the fabulously named Viking Bay stands
Bleak House (recognise the name?), which is where Dickens
stayed with his family, and where he wrote the classic ‘David
Copperfield’. Good news for English literature fans: the house is
still open as guest accommodation and you can even visit the
study he used for his writing!
Viking Bay remains a diverting holiday destination, with children’s
rides, beach huts, Kent Surf School, a harbour and clifftop
promenade. e pier, which Dickens referred to as “without
the slightest pretensions to architecture, and very picturesque in
consequence”, still stands today and adds old world charm to a
seaside town that remains proud of its history.
Did you know?
Did you know?
e Scottish novelist John Buchan began writing ‘e 39 Steps’
while e staying Scottish in novelist Broadstairs. John Buchan He was bedridden began writing with ‘e a duodenal 39
ulcer Steps’ and while needed staying to take in Broadstairs. his mind off He the was pain. bedridden e steps with leading a
from duodenal villa to ulcer beach, and which needed give to the take book his mind its title off and the denouement,
e steps are supposedly leading from based villa on to 78 beach, steps which at North give Foreland. the book‘e
39 its Steps’ title and has been denouement, adapted for are film supposedly many times based (including on 78 steps by
Alfred at North Hitchcock) Foreland. and ‘e is also 39 Steps’ a long-running has been adapted stage play for infilm
by Alfred Hitchcock) and is also a
long-running stage play in London’s West End.
Blue Lias Cliffs and Lyme Regis, Dorset
If you have an interest in Jurassic fossils, girl power, or possibly
both, then look no further than the coast of Dorset, where in the
early 19th Century a young woman called Mary Anning (1799-
1847) made significant leaps in the name of palaeontology.
Anning is credited with challenging scientific preconceptions
about evolution, despite being born a working-class woman at a
time when wealthy gentlemen dominated science. She lived at a
time when not much was known about dinosaurs and people believed
in the biblical interpretation of the story of creation and
of the flood. e spectacular marine reptiles that Mary unearthed
shook the scientific community into looking at different
explanations for changes in the natural world.
England’s beaches are still bursting with fossils today, more
than 160 years after the death of Mary Anning. e rocks in this
area date predominantly from the Early Jurassic era, approximately
199-189 million years ago.
Fossil hunting remains a popular pastime for families. e best
place to look for fossils is among the pebbles and rock pools on
the foreshore. Loose fossils including ammonites, belemnites and
reptile bones can all be found quite easily. Guided fossil walks
are also led in the area if you want a helping hand.
If you're interested in finding out more about Mary Anning, a
number of her discoveries can be seen at e Natural History
Museum in London.
6 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
Bleak House, Broadstairs
Osborne House, Isle of Wight
e e tongue tongue twister twister “She “She sells sells sea-shells on on the the sea-shore” is reputed
reputed to be to inspired have been by Mary inspired Anning. by Mary
Margate Shell Grotto
Although not strictly Victorian, an oddity discovered at the
dawn of Victoria’s reign is the Margate shell grotto, which became
a popular destination for people visiting the seaside resort
of Margate. First discovered by a father and son attempting to
dig a duck pond, the grotto includes 70 feet of winding underground
passages and 4.6 million shells. ese include cockles,
whelks, mussels and oyster shells forming various patterns of
mosaics, with images of the Tree of Life, gods and goddesses,
the horns or a ram, a three-pointed star, as well as the sun and
The Classic English
The town of Seahouses in Northumberland was originally
built as a fishing community comprising small cottages or
‘seahouses’. With the coming of the railroad in the late 19th
century, two stations were built to accommodate the
booming fishing trade and the station at the end of the line
by the sea became officially known as Seahouses.
In 1838, the Grotto opened as a public attraction, and so it remains
to this day. What was the purpose of this mysterious subterranean
passageway? e question remains open but
suggestions have included an 18th or 19th century rich man’s
folly, a prehistoric astronomical calendar or even connections
with the Knights Templar or Freemasonry. Or was it just a
Victorian hoax? Carbon dating would prove expensive and has
yet to be carried out, however there is an argument for leaving
the mystery and letting visitors create their own stories for this
e shell grotto is open every day from March to October, and
only at weekends in the winter.
Osborne House, The Isle of Wight
Even the real Queen Victoria was not immune to the pleasures
of this newfound holiday pastime. Writing in her diary in 1846
she remarked: “We drove down to the seashore and remained
there for an hour playing with the children who were so happy.”
Of course, it was not just any seashore just as Queen Victoria
was no ordinary woman! Osborne House was Victoria’s country
retreat on the Isle of Wight and had a private beach where the
royal family could enjoy themselves away from the public gaze.
is private beach, once so exclusive, was finally opened to the
public in 2012. One of the many delights the public are now
privy to includes Queen Victoria’s bathing machine. A bathing
machine might seem a strange contraption to the post-1960s liberated
bikini wearing folk of the 21st century, but back then it
was the perfect solution to the impropriety of wearing bathing
suits. e whole contraption was run into the sea so that
The town’s fishing history means that you can easily find
some of the best fish and chips at the seaside. One
particular favourite is Neptune’s, serving traditional fish and
chips and ice cream in the town centre.
The town is centred on the harbour where boats take
visitors to the Farne Islands, home to one of Europe’s most
important bird sanctuaries as well as a massive seal colony. If
you time your trip right you could catch the sight of baby
seals being born.
Brighton Palace Pier
Slate Hall riding centre offers lessons, treks and horseback
beach rides along Bamburgh and Seahouses beaches with
views of the Farne Islands.
FOCUS The Magazine 7
Lyme Regis, Cobb
The British coastline is more than 7,000 miles long.
There are more than 200 beaches in the UK.
There are approximately 900 donkeys working on British
Weston-super-Mare has had donkey rides run by the same
family since 1886.
Dark donkeys are better for beach work because they are
naturally protected from sunburn.
The Coronation Rock holds the record for the biggest
stick of rock. It weighed in at 424.5kg in 2000.
King George V ordered 1,500 tons of sand to be taken
from Essex and dumped onto a mud flat near the Tower of
London to create Tower Beach. It could hold up to 500
people and was usable for five hours at low tide. It was
closed in 1971.
There is technically no such thing as a seagull.
There are 25 species of the gull family and the ones most
familiar in the UK are herring gulls.
A study by the British Psychological Society in 2012
concluded that being by the seaside contributed the most
to levels of wellbeing.
Catherine Sykes works in the arts and is a lover of all things
historic. You can reach her at email@example.com
Victoria could enter in one side fully clothed and exit directly
into the sea in her bathing suit without being seen. Inside is a
changing room and a plumbed in toilet. When she had finished
her dip, it was pulled back to the beach using a wire rope and
winch. Non-royals also had access to bathing machines, which
could be drawn by horses. Sometimes, the bathing machines
would have what was known as a ‘dipper.’ A dipper was a person
who waited at the shore to push people out of the bathing machine
and into the sea, and then drag them back out when they
What did Queen Victoria think of this contraption? We have
a quote from her diary that describes her feelings towards it:
“Drove to the beach with my maids and went in the bathing
machine, where I undressed and bathed in the sea (for the first
time in my life)… I thought it delightful till I put my head
under water, when I thought I should be stifled.”
e Isle of Wight makes for an excellent seaside retreat to take
the family to and is the largest and second most populated island
in England. Osborne House is located in East Cowes. For
any sailing enthusiasts, Cowes hosts an annual sailing week dating
from 1826, which includes 40 daily races, up to 1,000
boats, and 8,000 competitors ranging from Olympic and world
class professionals to weekend sailors.
You can reach the island via hovercraft to Southsea, or there
are ferry and catamaran services to Southampton, Lymington
and Portsmouth. It’s an adventure in itself just getting there!
Make sure to visit the town of Ryde, which has the world oldest
seaside Make pleasure to visit pier. the e town pier of was Ryde, officially which opened has the on world 26 July
1814 oldest and seaside measures pleasure 745 pier. yards e long pier (681 was metres). officially e opened pier’s on
200th 26 July anniversary 1814 and was measures celebrated 745 yards in 2014. long (681 metres).
e pier’s 200th anniversary was celebrated in 2014.
8 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
e UK is an amazing country. I love it so much so that I married
a Scotsman and settled down in a small city outside London. Now
it feels like home, but it was daunting at first. Many expats will
agree that moving to a new country can be very intimidating. I am
from Los Angeles and though I speak the same language, there are
many cultural subtleties that I did not understand at first. I experienced
a steep learning curve that resulted in some hilarious encounters,
but also some consequences.
Every culture has rules of social engagement. e British however
place even more importance than most on etiquette. Knowing the
protocol here can mean the difference between acing or failing an
interview, making lifelong friends or meeting special someone. “It
is just good manners” is a popular phrase here, which is often uttered
in derision about a person that has broken etiquette.
As an expat who is now here to stay, I have compiled some advice
to make the most of living here and to help you not make the same
mistakes that I did! I would also recommend reading a copy of
Debrett’s Handbook for more in-depth information. is book explains
protocol, although some of the information is inapplicable
to most (how to act when one meets the Queen for example), it
nicely explains the finer points of British social etiquette.
What to wear
British fashion is, and always has been, conservatively chic.
Classic cuts reign supreme, particularly in the workplace. Even
in casual get-togethers, a polished look is important. In London,
I showed up to work on ‘casual’ Friday in a t-shirt and torn
jeans. My mentor looked at me and said: “It is always better to
be mistaken for the queen than the pauper.” I cringed and made
sure my casual Los Angeles clothes were relegated to the weekend.
Always be well-groomed even if you are the most dressed
up in the room.
Greetings and conversation
Over-familiarity is very frowned upon here in both conversation
and physicality. A firm handshake when meeting someone is the
ideal greeting. Kisses or hugs are reserved only for close friends.
A typical hello is “How are you?” in which you reply, “Fine, and
yourself?” Anything more said on your part will be very awkward.
I used to explain my entire weekend before I realised
that the person had no interest and was looking vaguely uncomfortable.
FOCUS The Magazine 9
Short-sleeved polo shirts are ideal casual wear,
although a tailored t-shirt with a smart jacket does
the trick too.
Jeans or trousers should always fit neatly, avoid
the very skinny ‘painted-on’ trend or the extra
Colourful socks or pocket squares are a fun way
to jazz up a suit or monochromatic outfit.
Shoes should always be in great repair, polished
Typical early conversation topics include weather, recent television
and sporting occasions, or the event you are attending. Steer
clear of personal topics such as career, salary or marital status. It
usually takes three to five times of meeting the same people before
you can move on to more serious or personal topics.
e words ‘please’, ‘thank you’ and ‘sorry’ will be those you use
most here. is courteousness extends to people of all ages and
stations. Omitting please or thank you for any services rendered
is very uncouth. Sorry is said in many situations, such as before
you ask for something, when you are taking too long at the till,
even when someone bumps into you and it is not your fault.
Interestingly, the word is not an apology for what you are
doing, but more for the imposition on the other person’s time
Events and gifts
Events here are always anticipated occasions and planned far in
advance. Dinner parties or dining out are popular ways to spend
time with friends and dining etiquette is crucial if you want to be
invited again. Always make sure you have a small gift for the host
or planner. Expensive or showy gifts can be a source of embarrassment
so keep it small but thoughtful.
If it is a celebratory event like a birthday or anniversary, the
most important thing to remember is the card. Well-picked and
handwritten cards are at times more important than the gift itself.
ank you cards are essential in the UK, with etiquette dictating
that a card should be sent within the week of receiving a
gift or service. e holiday season is renowned for the card tradition
and it is an important time to show your caring for others.
My in-laws sent and received more than 100 Christmas cards,
and took people off their list when they didn’t receive one in
Very tight clothing, visible cleavage or a lot of leg
is a no-no.
Dresses should always be tailored. To the knee or
below are de rigeur.
Stylish flats or mid-rise court shoes are the best
options for shoes.
For weddings, cocktail dresses are a safe choice.
Make sure to wear a head dress such as a hat or
10 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
e most important advice I can give is to take risks and put
yourself out there. It can be uncomfortable starting over in a new
and foreign place but if you invest in learning about the culture
and making friends from the UK, you will find the warm undercurrent
that is British friendships. I find that once the reserved
and pleasantries stage is past, friends here are made for life. Don’t
stick to what you are comfortable with. You may make one mistake
or 50, but you will be richer for the experience and will really
see what an amazing place it is.
A special thank you goes to the local and expat ladies of St Albans
Mum’s Facebook group for helping me discuss these points in detail.
Tara Clarkson studied and worked for four years in London and
has recently returned after spending some time in Singapore.
She is from California, married to a Scotsman and is now
enjoying motherhood with an active toddler who has adopted
a Scottish accent.
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FOCUS The Magazine 11
It happens every year. The days get longer. Supermarkets start stocking strawberries and cream. Pimms-filled glasses and
Wimbledon posters are the final symptoms of British tennis fever! Fear not, in case you’ve caught the tennis bug, too; here are
some ideas for finding tennis courts, players of your standard to play with, places to get some kit, and ways to get closer to
that centre court ticket.
Pay and Play Public Clubs
Most public tennis clubs offer group lessons,
with a combination of women’s only, men’s
only, and mixed drills sessions at various levels.
Cardio tennis with its fast-paced tennis drills
and music is also a popular option.
Kensington and Chelsea Women’s Club and
the St. John’s Wood Women’s Club are
examples of social women’s clubs, which run
two hours of coach-assisted social doubles a
couple of times a week.
Private Club Coaches
Private lessons cost a coaching fee and
sometimes a court fee too. You can save on
costs by buddying up. Ask your coach to
suggest a partner of a similar standard.
The official Wimbledon website will explain what you need to do to
enter the Wimbledon Public Ballot (1 per household), introduced in
1924. Held at the All England Lawn Tennis Club, this year,
Wimbledon runs from 3-16 July.
Another way to get tickets is to enter your club’s ballot and opt in
on the LTA website. Note that public and club ballots do not
guarantee tickets. Deadlines for ballots are in December and
February before the grand slam.
If you have unfortunately missed both deadlines you can still go to
Wimbledon by having that truly British experience of queuing for
tickets. Queuing begins the Sunday before the start of the grand
slam where some 500 tickets for the four stadium courts and a
few thousand more for ground admissions go on sale every day
until the quarter-finals. Queuing is on Wimbledon Park on the
Church Road side. Closest tube station: Southfields. Camping out
from the night before is a sporting event in itself, but you can also
queue on the day.
Local Tennis Leagues and Box
In the Play section on the LTA website
www.lta.org.uk/play you can book into play in
local tennis leagues, training sessions, and
social Tuesdays with players of your standard.
Local Tennis Leagues
www.localtennisleagues.com and Tennis Jeanie
www.tennisjeannie.com are two other box
league services that provide opportunities for
12 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
The easiest place to demo racquets for Londoners is Wigmore
Sports. The closest tube station is Bond Street. Wigmore has
a wall to hit against or you can demo the racquet for a week
plus. Purchase your racquets there and you get a discount on
a strung racquet.
Online options such as Millet Sports also offer demos and tend
to be cheaper. Clubs usually offer a limited range of tennis
wear, shoes and other kit as well as stringing services. Gefen
Sports has certified stringers and specialises in stringing
To understand the true meaning of all-weather
courts, it’s imperative you try a game outside in
Britain. Outdoor options are available in nearly any
park. Look them up on your local council park’s
website or on the Lawn Tennis Association’s (LTA)
website www.lta.org.uk under Find a court. For some
popular park courts in central London try:
Regents Park www.willtowin.co.uk/regents-park
Hyde Park www.willtowin.co.uk/hyde-park
Battersea Park batterseapark.org/info/what-todo/sports/tennis/
Indoor pay and play courts in London are precious.
Here are some where you can make advance
Westway Sports & Fitness Centre
Islington Tennis Centre
Dukes Meadows www.dukesmeadows.com/tennis/
Grounds admissions are £25 and less; Centre Court and
Courts 1, 2, and 3 range from £41 to £190. A well-kept
Wimbledon secret is that once inside the grounds, you can
buy great resale seats from tired spectators from 15.30
onwards. Juniors with a BTM can even purchase them for a
fiver! If you aren’t able to get tickets to Wimbledon this year
you can still watch other professional tennis events in Britain.
Take a look at the Major Events section on the LTA website,
where you can try for seats at the Aegon Championships at
the Queen’s Club 19-25 June where you can see many of the
greats warm up for Wimbledon in a more intimate setting!
Private tennis clubs in London require an annual fee
and sometimes a joining fee or a debenture. They
are high-end pricewise and range in waiting times.
Three popular tennis clubs in central London with
indoor courts are:
Ealing Lawn Tennis Club www.ealingtennis.com
Campden Hill Lawn Tennis Club www.chltc.co.uk
The Queen’s Club www.queensclub.co.uk
Health Clubs with Indoor Tennis
These offer a pricey but an interesting alternative
with shorter waiting periods. A few health clubs with
gym facilities in London are:
The Chiswick Riverside Health & Racquets Club
Harbour Club Chelsea & Notting Hill
David Lloyd Club Raynes Park
The Park Club www.theparkclub.co.uk/tennis
Haru Yamada, is a long-term expat and tennis enthusiast with
two kids playing NCAA Division I sports in US colleges. Haru loves
the idea of continuing to play a favourite sport into higher
education and beyond! She can be reached at
FOCUS The Magazine 13
ARTS & CULTURE
Books Bring People Together
Hay on Wye Literary Festival 25 May – 4 June 2017
For nine days in May and June thousands of people will join some of the most influential writers and thinkers across
the arts, politics and science in a tiny town in Wales. The Hay on Wye Literary Festival, or “the Woodstock of the
mind” as former US President Bill Clinton famously dubbed it, started 30 years ago as an annual celebration of culture
and ideas in the picture-perfect town of Hay on Wye on the edge of the Brecon Beacons. Legend has it that the
festival was started around the kitchen table of founder Peter Florence in 1987 and is now a global event with satellite
festivals taking place in locations as far-flung as Cartagena and Segovia. It is fair to say that the events at Hay dominate
culture headlines in May and June every year because there are always provocative and challenging ideas
emerging from the talks. Past speakers include novelist Margaret Atwood, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, film director
Sam Mendes, actress Judi Dench, Astronomer Royal Martin Rees and Nobel Laureate Mohammed El-Baradei.
14 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
ARTS & CULTURE
Casper Lee and Emily Riordan Lee, Hay 2016
Morning sessions start around 10am and the
first talks of the day are usually popular ones.
The main tent serves as a meeting point and
is a real hive of activity with everyone getting
coffee and picking up tickets from the main
box office. Entry to the main festival site is
free as are some events, but many are
ticketed. Advance booking for most events is
important but some tickets, if available, can
be bought right up to the moment the talk
starts. Prices are reasonable and there is
always a good mix of locals and those from
further afield. Students can attend all events
for free, but must book in advance. Talks
range from 40 minutes to about an hour,
often with Q&A sessions, after which people
usually head to the main bookshop tent for
that author’s book signing. Every hour the
talks rotate with people dashing between
tents to get to the next event; don’t be
surprised if at the end of the day you have
made new acquaintances. The only queues
are when waiting to get into an event tent
and even those move fast. The children’s
festival, Hay Fever, with a full programme of
authors and activities, runs on site at the
One of the festival’s big draws is the
second-hand book tent run by Oxfam. The
shelves are constantly replenished and the
sight of people leaving with armloads of
books is a familiar one. Around the festival
site are deck chairs where between talks
people eagerly dive into their new books and
you will find plenty of refreshments including
bars and pop up restaurants. Some of the
talks finish quite late and musical events tend
to be in the evening, but by about 10pm the
festival is usually wound down and guests
have headed out. The site never feels
swamped or overcrowded, despite thousands
of people descending on the festival every
Hay on Wye is situated on the Welsh-English
border with the River Wye running through it.
Unsurprisingly, it is full of second hand books
stores as well as pubs and restaurants
offering everything from traditional pub
lunches to Spanish tapas. Outdoor clothing
stores are plentiful too because Hay is located
within the Black Mountains and hikers,
mountain bikers, canoers and kayakers
abound. The town has a very warm welcoming
atmosphere during the festival when the world
comes to its doorstep.
It is easy to visit the festival by car if you are
not staying in the town of Hay. Poor public
transport links combined with very affordable
parking rates make going by car a better
Hay dominates the headlines
every year because there are
always provocative and
challenging ideas emerging
from the talks.
FOCUS The Magazine 15
option. The journey from London on the M4 towards
Abergavenny takes approximately 3.5 hours. At the festival
there is plenty of public car parking priced at approximately
£5 a day. There are no direct trains to Hay on Wye. Instead
visitors travel to Hereford. Hay on Wye is a 20-minute taxi
ride away. Trains from London take about 4 hours. Local
shuttle buses operate from the centre of Hay on Wye to
the festival site. Be prepared for mud if it rains because all
parking and the festival itself is in a field. The weather,
while warm, is changeable so pack accordingly
remembering that you’ll be spending the day in a field. The
flexibility of the schedule of speakers, the ease of parking
and leaving, and the fact that there is no entry fee allows
people to come and go throughout the day.
Places to stay
There is a great variety of places to stay during the festival
from stately homes to humble but hip B&Bs, and
campsites with yurts for the more adventurous. Booking
early is essential and be prepared to not stay in Hay itself.
Brecon, a lively market town, is 16 miles away from Hay on
Wye and takes approximately 20 minutes by car to reach.
Here festival-goers can find a variety accommodation to
suit all tastes and budgets.
Llangoed Hall, an Edwardian former stately home, is
located on the outskirts of Brecon, approximately a 15-
minute drive from the centre of Hay. The house is owned
by Sir Bernard Ashley and is decorated with furnishings
from his designer wife Laura Ashley in traditional English
style. In May, the house is full of festivalgoers and can
accommodate late bookers because of its size. Hugh
Bonneville, better known as Downtown Abbey’s Earl of
Grantham, was spotted staying there when speaking at Hay
On the other end of the price scale there is the Wellington
Hotel in the centre of Brecon. The Wellington is a small
hotel with its own pub dating back to the early 1800s. It has
reasonably priced, no frills en-suite rooms, a pay-anddisplay
public car park attached and provides a good base
for festival goers.
Westbrook Court B&B is a bit of a hidden gem and ideal
for festival goers looking for a balance between a well-run
B&B and a hip, individual space. The B&B is run by a
couple from London who have brought a little slice of
metropolitan minimalism to a cosy country retreat with
stunning views over the rolling hills. Festival goers share
stories and compare itineraries over the friendly, communal
breakfast table. The rooms are individual units with galleried
bedrooms and front doors opening out onto a communal
courtyard. For further information go to:
Gary Griffiths is a bibliophile and regular visitor
to the Hay Festival
16 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
Learning innovation through technology
London offers some amazing schools and
as a result, we have kids getting great scores
in their GCSEs, A levels, IBs, SATs and
more. ey are usually ready, at the end of
their secondary school, to move on to university
here in the UK or wherever they
may want to pursue higher education but
are they ready for the world that they are
going to inhabit?
We typically teach our children to pass
tests, prepare for university, and get good
scores, but that’s not enough for them to
be successful in a rapidly changing world.
We know from our own work (and home)
lives what kinds of skills are really important
– adaptability, resilience, problem
solving, and communication. Adaptability
because things are changing rapidly and no
sooner do you get a grip on things than
they change; resilience because we can
choose to see ‘failures’ as opportunities to
iterate and improve; problem solving because
putting together solutions is where
we create value; and communication because
no matter how bright you are or how
good your solution is, it won’t be valuable
if you can’t communicate it well to others!
Beyond these ‘soft’ skills, our young people
will need to use information and technology.
Coding and making or inventing gadgets,
are great ways for students to get all of
these skills. Learning basic programming
helps young people break down problems
and solve them systematically – it’s a skill
that serves them offline as well as online.
Tinkering and creating digital and physical
projects lets them design, iterate, and
problem solve. Children take creative and
intellectual risks, and they can be proud of
the original products that they create. ey
can also hone their communication skills
inside their games and apps, or through
pitches showing off their wares.
Programming is now on the national
curriculum so all children in British education
are getting some exposure. Some international
schools have strong tech
programmes, with Python programming
courses, a Maker space, a Robotics league,
and more. ere are also a number of
groups that offer camps and courses during
school holidays and at weekends with a
focus on creativity and the development of
a supportive and engaging community.
ere’s never been a better time to learn
programming, create gadgets, or build
your own website. It’s a golden age of tech
and learning, with lots of accessible tools
and platforms. Plus, with another article in
the paper each day on the automation of
the economy, there’s never been a more
critical time to learn these skills.
Your children can build up their soft
skills and be prepared for a world where
change is the only certainty. Added to this,
becoming confident digital creators will
allow them to make their own opportunities
in the future. Code on!
programming helps young
people break down
problems and solve them
Jill Hodges is the Founder of Fire Tech
Camp, which runs camps, clubs and
workshops for 9-17 year olds in coding,
making and digital arts. For more
information, please contact Jill
on firstname.lastname@example.org or see the
FOCUS The Magazine 17
FOOD & DRINK
A history of street food
I would like to take you on a tour of
London’s food through the ages. We will
start at the oldest market in London,
Borough and end at one of the newest,
Maltby Street. We often think of street
food as a modern phenomenon created
at music festivals where hipsters buy buffalo
burgers and posh sausages. We can
however trace its history back to the
Romans and their street sellers, also
known as costermongers.
It is at London’s markets that you can
enjoy one of the oldest street foods –
oysters. Oysters occur naturally in the estuaries
around England, but it was the
Romans who created the oyster beds and
introduced us to this delicacy. Some of the
best oysters in the UK come from a small
island off the coast of Essex called Mersea.
The Romans had their capital at
Colchester at this time and so set up the
oyster beds nearby. I consider this to be
Borough Market is the mother of all
food markets. Oysterman Richard
Haward brings the delights of the
Essex coast to London where he
sells oysters from Mersea Island.
If you can’t carry them home, they
can also be delivered to you.
an almost perfect street food – it comes
in its own natural container; you open it
with a sharp stone or knife and then it has
its own half shell as a little dish in which to
Street sellers were vital in supplying food
to Londoners. They became particularly
important as the population of London
grew exponentially in the 19th century. It
is estimated that there were 30,000-
40,000 street sellers including muffin men,
pie men, shrimp girls, and oyster sellers
feeding London at this time.
If you happen to stand on the corner of
Stoney Street and Park Street, look up at
Borough Market building.The silver building
in front of you has some interesting
pineapples on its roof. This building used
to be part of the old Floral Hall, which
was in the old fruit and vegetable market
in Covent Garden. When the Covent
Garden Opera House was refurbished in
the 1990s, they moved part of the hall to
Borough Market. When pineapples were
first introduced into England in the 17th
century, they were considered the caviar
of their day and they became a status
As you wander through Borough Market
and onto London Bridge, you can appreciate
that this was one of London’s main
thoroughfares. In fact, for nearly 17 centuries
it was the only way over the river
18 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
FOOD & DRINK
“ Costermongers were a lifeline to London and provided Londoners
with much of their food over the years.”
The George Inn is a great place to
stop for a well-earned drink.
and into the City of London. Imagine this
area filled with people trying to get across
the bridge, fighting their way through the
crowds of other travellers and costermongers
selling their wares. London Bridge
was locked at night, which meant people
often needed accommodation. This area
became filled with inns and pubs serving
those who dared not go back out of
London because of the risk of thieves and
robbers that lay along the dark sections of
Walk south down Borough High Street
and you will notice that there are many little
yards truncating the main road. These
yards, including Kings Head Yard and
White Hart Yard, were once the site of
inns. In fact, the pubs and inns in this area
were very important in serving weary
travellers. The George Inn is London’s only
remaining galleried inn in an area that
would have been filled with places to stay,
rest and eat. The George Inn dates from
1677, but there has been an inn on the
same site since at least 1522. The original
building was big, taking 80 coaches per
week in its heyday. Shakespeare knew the
inn well and would have put on plays here
in the courtyard. The inn would have
formed a three-sided building with balconies
on each side creating an internal
yard. The yard was perfect for performing
plays especially on Feast Days, Christmas
and Easter. The rich would look down
from the balconies and the poor would
gather in the courtyard around the action.
The noise from the street sellers and the
drunken crowd would have meant that
the people in the balconies probably
missed much of the action.
Costermongers would have brought
around such delights as hot sheep’s feet,
hot codlings (apples wrapped in pastry),
pies, shrimps, whelks and hot eels.
The next stop is Maltby Street, which is
about 15-minute walk away from Borough
Market. Walking along St Thomas Street,
you will see the extent of the new
London Bridge station and also be amazed
at the height of The Shard. As you near
Bermondsey Street, you might notice
Vinegar Yard; this is a nod to the nearby
Sarsons’s vinegar factory, which would
Maltby Street Market is open
Saturdays and Sundays. See
www.maltby.st for details.
40 Maltby Street is a delightful and
relaxed eatery for those who prefer
to dine inside.
have spewed acrid fumes into the air. As
you walk around the corner into
Bermondsey Street, enjoy the variety of
wonderful places to eat and drink and
maybe stop a while at The Fashion &
Textile Museum. Again, keep an eye out
for the building and road names, which remind
us that this area was also filled with
tanneries and wool weavers.
As we cross Tower Bridge Road and walk
along Maltby Street Market, it is difficult to
believe that this market was only founded
in 2010. It offers plenty of places to sit and
have some food, a drink and the opportunity
to watch the local action. The food
available is eclectic among which are juicy
steak sandwiches, delicious falafel, and waffles
with streaky bacon and maple syrup.
The rise of modern street food is a phenomenon
that doesn’t look like ending
any time soon. Currently, London has the
largest number of markets of any city in
the world and has clearly remained in love
with quirky market stalls and street food
Emma Parker creates and leads a series of tours of London including The Secret History of Street Food and East End Eats,
www.coutours.co.uk. Contact Emma on 0208 6345667 or Emma@coutours.co.uk.
FOCUS The Magazine 19
Technology helps children find their voice
Within a classroom there can be a
wide range of student dynamics and
personalities. Every one of these
students is unique, each with their own
approaches to learning. More often
than not, there will be students
perceived as quiet or shy; but does this
mean their voices should not be heard?
Technology can provide students with
opportunities to express their ideas in
various ways. From writing reflections
on a blog, to recording a stop motion
video to demonstrate a scientific
concept, technology opens up a world
of opportunities for supporting student
learning. Some students might prefer
the sequential nature of posting on a
blog, while other students might prefer
to express their ideas through a more
hands on, creative process like stop
Over recent years screencasting tools
have become a popular addition to the
classroom. A screencast tool such as
Screencastify or Explain Everything,
allows students to capture a recording
of their computer or tablet screen. As
the child records the screencast they
can also give a narration of their
actions. This type of tool might be used
to demonstrate a set of student
instructions or to reflect on elements
of their online work.
Students who lack confidence in
speaking in front of others can use
screencasting tools to rehearse, record
and playback their ideas. By allowing
extra time, teachers can encourage
students to reflect on their video and
re-record if necessary, reassuring that
mistakes are part of the process. This
removes the pressure of public
speaking and allows student voices to
Sharing learning and taking action
With inquiry-based learning, a popular
approach to education, teaching is
based on students’ individual knowledge
and interests. Throughout the inquiry,
students are encouraged to ask
questions that help to guide the
learning. Kath Murdoch, author and
educational consultant explains that “as
students move through the process of
inquiry, they can draw on several ways
of investigating and expressing their
The multifaceted nature of technology
provides an excellent support for the
expression of these growing
understandings. Throughout the inquiry
process, students can use various
technologies to share their learning. As
Timothy Gard, a Toronto based
educator maintains: “technology is a
natural way to encourage student voice
in classroom and school communities.”
To provide greater opportunities for
sharing student voices through inquiry,
Dwight School London has recently
established its own school-based radio
station. Dwight Radio promotes the
development of speaking and listening
skills and gives students the opportunity
to share their learning with others. The
students are involved in all stages of the
process: from recording and using
professional radio equipment, to the
editing of radio programmes.
Although Dwight Radio is in its early
stages, it has already been used to
promote student action. Leading up to
a recent school community fair,
students in Year 6 created radio
advertisements to promote the
handmade goods being sold at their
class stall. Through teamwork and
enthusiasm, the students used the radio
to communicate their ideas effectively
to a wider audience. These student
advertisements were then shared
through the school newsletter to
parents and streamed through the
Another benefit of school radio has
20 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
“ Through teamwork and enthusiasm, the students used the radio to
communicate their ideas effectively to a wider audience.”
been the support it provides for
building student confidence in speaking
and listening. During a recording session
with Year 1 students, a young boy, who
was not willing to speak in front of a big
group, decided to come along and
watch the radio recording process. In
the beginning he watched and listened
from afar, then gradually, as he felt more
comfortable, he came closer and closer
to the microphones. By the end of the
session he had the headphones on, and
recorded an introduction for the group.
What a delight it was to see the child
grow in confidence as he operated the
equipment to share his thoughts!
Technology enabled this.
Learning a new language, a
Arriving in a new country, a new home
and a new school can be difficult
enough, but when this experience
includes learning a new language, stress
levels can be very high. Children often
feel frustrated in not being able to
communicate and need extra support
to settle in with their peers. This is
where technology can play an
Not only can devices be used as a
method of language translation, which
admittedly does prove very helpful to
students learning English as a second
language, but technology can also be
used as an avenue to build relationships
An example of this occurred at the
beginning of the year when a class
welcomed a new student who spoke
very little English. Frustrations for this
student were soon quickly apparent
because he found communicating
difficult. In an effort to foster the
building of peer relationships, the
students were asked to pair up and
share their shortcut tips on a
Chromebook with each other. Rather
than having to rely on explaining his
ideas, the new student was able to
demonstrate his tips to his peers with
great enthusiasm. Technology had
provided a common language for these
two students and facilitated the
foundation of their ongoing friendship.
Supporting students’ needs
For children with special educational
needs or disabilities, technology can
help them to access the curriculum.
Students with learning disabilities often
achieve greater success when they are
encouraged to harness their strengths
rather than focus on their disabilities.
Often technology can assist with this
In particular, dictation and text-tospeech
tools are very useful for
students who need assistance to read
or write. Students can use a dictation
app to assist with recording ideas, and
text-to-speech tools come in very
handy when support is needed to read
a body of text. There are many apps on
the market that focus solely on each of
these two functions, but you’ll also find
that on closer inspection many
educational apps already include these
Essentially, technology is the Swiss Army
knife of education. With careful planning
and balanced use, the versatility of
technology can be such an asset to
today's classroom. Using it to deliver
personalised learning experiences,
teachers can now, more than ever,
ensure that every student finds their
Nicole Rehman is a Digital Literacy
Coach and Year 5 teacher at Dwight
School London. She is a Google for
Education Certified Trainer and can be
at email@example.com and
All images on this page courtesy of Nicole Rehman
FOCUS The Magazine 21
FINANCE & LAW
Living as a dependant in the UK
UK immigration law has its complexities, but the rules for dependants can be particularly challenging. Najma Ali explains the
visas that enable people to stay in the UK as dependants. By the term ‘dependant’ we typically mean the partners and children
of the main visa holder. These dependants have specific rules that relate to them and in this article we will deal with three of the
most common scenarios being PBS dependants, non-EEA family members of EEA nationals and the dependants of British
This visa is usually issued to dependants for the same period as
the main applicant, or for a period of three years if the main applicant
has Indefinite Leave to Remain or British nationality.
To apply for extensions, the dependant must prove they continue
to rely on the main applicant, who themselves continues
to meet the minimum maintenance requirement of £630 for
the three-month period before the extension application date.
Points-based dependants usually have the right to work, unless
they depend on a Tier 4 migrant who has less than 12-months
leave, or is educated below degree level.
If a person ceases to be a dependant, they can apply for a different
visa if they meet the necessary requirements.
Non-EEA family member
Currently, the principle of free movement within the European
Economic Area (EEA) allows non-EEA dependants to reside
with EEA family members for a period of six months, after
which they can apply for a five-year visa. Following this, the dependant
can apply for permanent residency if they meet the
necessary requirements, and can prove they have lived permanently
in the UK without travelling abroad for more than 180
days per year.
22 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
FINANCE & LAW
If the relationship ends during the five-year period, the dependant
can make a retained rights of residence application if:
n The main applicant is still a UK resident and has qualified status
at the time the relationship
n The relationship lasted at least three years.
n The couple lived together in the UK for at least one year
before the relationship ended.
Dependant of a British national
Dependants of British nationals are usually granted a visa for 2.5
years, and extensions will only be granted if they:
n Remain in a current relationship.
n Have access to adequate accommodation.
n Meet a Level A2 CEFR English language requirement, which
is higher than the Level A1 requirement of an initial
n Are dependent on someone who meets the minimum income
requirement, currently £18,600.
Unfortunately, if the relationship ends then the dependant loses
their right to remain in the UK, but they have the right to apply
for a different visa if they meet the necessary requirements.
Najma Ali is an immigration lawyer, who can be contacted on
020 7183 5683 or at firstname.lastname@example.org
Are you looking for a different kind of education for your child? -
Dwight offers an international education in London!
Dwight Global Campuses and Programmes: London | New York | Seoul | Shanghai | Dubai
Dwight is an IB World School with students aged 2-18 from over 40 countries.
Dwight is truly a local school with a global reach preparing students for entry in to
leading universities in the UK and abroad.
For details of our International Baccalaureate Programmes
for students of all ages contact:
email@example.com or 020 8920 0634
6 Friern Barnet Lane N11 3LX | www.dwightlondon.org
Scan here to read the Good Schools Guide review
Dwight School London has Tier 4 Sponsor Status.
FOCUS The Magazine 23
How to stay
a career break
People take career breaks for a multitude of reasons – caring for elderly
parents, starting a business, relocating with a partner, and raising
a family. Whatever the reason and the duration of their career
break, most people will return to the workforce. In this article, we
will show how a little regular career maintenance can make your reentry
easier – and might just have some other unexpected benefits.
When you are on a career break, and life is busy, staying up-to-date
with your career can seem like the very last thing on your neverending
‘to do’ list. e good news however is that some minimal effort,
even if only in two or three quick bursts a year, will make a big
difference when you are ready to return to work.
Why can’t I do this just before I return to work?
e truth is that you could get back up-to-date just before you
begin to look for your next role. You could read up on your industry,
madly network with former colleagues, and overhaul your CV
all in a matter of days. ere are however a few downsides to doing
this as a rush job. First, it could make it clear to everyone that you
have been on a career break. Secondly, it is usually more time-consuming
to reconnect with people than it is to re-energise warm contacts
in your network. Finally, it could seem just a bit desperate
(“Let’s connect on LinkedIn and can you please endorse me now!”).
ere are surprising benefits of staying up-to-date, and they are not
just for your career!
When a career break has coincided with a major life event such as
having children or moving abroad, we can very quickly forget who
we were when working. is forgetting of the ‘work’ self can happen
very quickly, sometimes over mere months.
For many people I coach, remembering their ‘work’ self can help to
boost their confidence. Seeing ourselves through the eyes of our
favourite manager who has just endorsed us on LinkedIn, or a former
colleague who compliments our technical skills, can remind us
how great our ‘work’ self is. Being able to contribute to discussions
on a business-related topic in a social setting can bring us the respect
of our partners, friends and even our children.
For many people, then comes the realisation that they can go
back to work: this career break is voluntary. ey will be ready
and confident, to return to work when the time is right. It can
also, of course, lead to interesting roles that fit within a career
break such as voluntary and trustee positions.
But I want to change careers, isn’t this a
waste of time?
Not everyone wishes to, or can return to their previous career.
Many people take the opportunity presented by a career break
to review their options and move into a new career or take up a
So, is this investment in a career you are leaving not simply a
waste of time? e short answer, supported by comprehensive
research, is ‘No’.
Here are three reasons why it pays to stay current, regardless of
your intended next role:
1. Your next job is statistically most likely to be found through
your extended network (including the networks of your
network). e research suggests that 80-90% of all jobs are
not advertised. If your preferred next role is in another industry
or location, your network has an even more important
role to play in helping you identify opportunities.
2. Both employers and professional recruiters look at the social
media accounts (including LinkedIn) of candidates.
Although you might feel that this is not appropriate, they
are usually trying to understand the context of your career.
Are you in touch in positive ways with people that you previously
worked with? Are people endorsing you for the
types of skills you should have given your career history?
3. You are likely to need recommendations from your network
to secure an offer for any future role.
24 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
“ Don’t aim for perfection: it is better to do
a little than nothing at all.”
How to Stay Up-to-Date
ese ideas can be completed online, from anywhere in the
world. As a bare minimum, try to do four of these things, every
six months. Given that many of these activities take less than
ten minutes to complete, you could be finished in less than an
hour each time.
You will, of course, reap more rewards if you invest more time
and effort, but don’t aim for perfection: it is much better to do
a little occasionally than nothing at all.
Profile mini review: Check your location and profile picture.
Your LinkedIn profile will be one of the first things people see
when they search for you by name so make sure it is up to date.
n Grow your network: Accept any outstanding LinkedIn invitations,
and send five to ten invitations to new contacts.
Remember to also connect on LinkedIn with people you are
meeting in social contexts.
n Congratulate people on their successes: LinkedIn notifies us
when former colleagues, former bosses and friends have
started a new job, published an article or shared other good
news. It takes seconds to send a congratulations message
and yet very few people do so. Make this small effort and
your contact may well pause to refresh you in their mind as
a current contact.
n Endorse your contacts: is has two benefits: first, the person
you endorse will think positively of you and, secondly,
they are much more likely to endorse you in return.
LinkedIn is rumoured to begin offering endorsed skills information
to recruiters so this is important.
Set up Google Alerts: e free Google Alerts system will
email to you any online articles that contain specific keywords.
It is a convenient way to see published information about an
organisation, industry, place or person.
Join online groups: Both Facebook and LinkedIn have industry
and alumni groups, which can help you to stay on top of
trends and changing terminology.
Read professional magazines and newsletters: ese
don’t often make for exciting reading but a quick skim read can
sometimes highlight a mention of a former colleague for you to
follow up. File any particularly interesting articles so you can
re-read them before you begin interviewing.
Christmas or holiday cards: An emailed card – usually with
a donation to charity mentioned – is perfectly acceptable and
takes almost no time to organise, but will ensure you are in
touch at least annually with your contacts.
“ Staying in touch with your ‘work’ self
can deliver benefits – even before your
next job search begins.”
Kath Sloggett, Founder of
is a career change
coach and start-up
business adviser. She
people returning to
work after a career
break, and runs career
Make Every Contact Count
Now that you are thinking more about your pre-break career,
as a final step try to bring your career into everyday
conversations. Start some sentences with “when I was
working in…”. Cite anecdotes from your experiences with
your team or a client. You can also introduce yourself to
people (or ask your partner to do so) including some reference
to your career. is will open up a whole new range
of conversations with people, even people you know quite
well, who may have no idea about your career background,
experiences or ambitions.
FOCUS The Magazine 25
Welcome to kcwc, London’s largest international
women’s club, providing a unique range of over
35 activities including top-level lectures, courses,
tours, social, cultural and special events, ranging
from art history to day trips, foreign languages,
networking and wine appreciation. We invite you
to join us and enjoy access to exclusive London
venues and attractions and attend our monthly
events with high-profile speakers in distinguished
settings. For more information, please contact
or visit us at www.kcwc.org.uk
Join the French speaking
community in London !
Meet our 950 members
Participate in 70 cultural events
Socialize in one of our
local area groups
Join our Mums & Kids activities,
Clubs, Sports courses…
and much more !
Visit and join online on
find us on Facebook
26 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
HEALTH & WELLBEING
Can the ‘vampire face lift’
save you from balding?
Common baldness, medically known as
androgenetic alopecia, is a prospect that
many dread. It is however the
commonest form of hair loss seen in
clinic and affects men (male pattern
balding) and women (female pattern
hair loss) alike. It is most associated with
the ageing process, but it can also
appear at a much earlier age. Hair loss
at any age is distressing and with
increasing public awareness of
treatments for hair loss, it is unsurprising
to see a rise in the number of
consultations from people of all ages
seeking treatment to prevent
progression and reverse the signs
In common balding, hair follicles inherit
a sensitivity to male hormone
(androgens) in the body causing
progressive shortening of the growth
phase – a process known as
miniaturisation. These miniaturised hairs
are shorter and finer meaning they
cover the scalp less effectively, resulting
in thinning and visible scalp through the
hair. Men typically have a receding hair
line and/or the thinning on the crown,
while women tend to have a different
pattern with thinning on the crown only
and a normal hair line. Contrary to
common belief, it is not just passed on
from your maternal grandfather. The
truth is, androgenetic alopecia
(especially when it starts early)
anywhere in your family poses a risk.
Commonly used treatments for
baldness include topical Minoxidil,
historically a blood pressure tablet that
caused patients to become hairy as a
side effect (!) and Propecia, a tablet
licensed for men, which blocks the effect
of androgens on the hair follicles. Some
forms of the combined oral
contraceptive pill can be protective
against hair thinning in women. Hair
transplantation has also gained
increasing interest in recent years with
notable public figures posting photos of
themselves after the procedure with an
enviable new hairline.
A new treatment that is gaining
popularity is platelet-rich plasma (PRP) -
a treatment whereby the growth factors
in your own blood are extracted from a
blood sample taken from the arm (a bit
like having a blood test). The portion of
blood containing these growth factors is
then re-injected to the desired
treatment area. PRP is used in several
other medical fields namely wound
healing, tendon injuries, some forms of
arthritis and in facial rejuvenation,
coined famously as the ‘vampire face lift’.
Lab studies have shown that PRP can
re-activate dormant hair follicles and
several patient case studies have
demonstrated encouraging results with
regrowth and thickening of hair. Larger
Contrary to common belief, baldness is not just passed on from your maternal grandfather.
FOCUS The Magazine 27
HEALTH & WELLBEING
All the information contained in this article
is intended for your general knowledge
and is not a substitute for medical advice
or treatment. FOCUS magazine cannot
and does not give medical advice. This
article is not intended to take the place of
your doctor’s advice. Please discuss your
symptoms and needs with your doctor or
trials are however needed to establish
the efficacy when compared to more
established treatments. Although like
most treatments for balding, repeated
sessions would be required to maintain
effect, the main advantage of PRP is its
safety profile – the fact that it is not a
drug and is derived from your own
blood appeals to many as a low risk
alternative treatment to taking life long
(usually) hormonal medication.
With the expanding use of PRP to treat
a range of medical conditions, perhaps
after all, there has always been some
truth in the mystical beliefs of the
healing properties of blood.
Dr Sharon Wong is a UK-trained Consultant Dermatologist. She provides
medical and surgical treatments for a comprehensive range of general skin
conditions in adults and children. She is also one of few dermatologists in
London who specialises in hair and scalp disorders. To book an appointment
please call 020 7234 2009 www.hcatheshard.com
28 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
World Para Athletics and IAAF Championships
Ready, steady, go!
What will you do this summer? There is
no need to rush out of London because
once again the capital is hosting a major
sporting event, the World Para Athletics
(14-23 July) and International Association
of Athletics Federations (IAAF)
Championships (4-13 August), at the
London Stadium in Queen Elizabeth
The competitions’ organisers have recruited
4,000 volunteers from more than
15,000 applicants. Those ‘runners’ who
have been selected have undergone a
lengthy process of role allocation and
training sessions to make sure that all goes
It is the first time that Great Britain will
host the event comprising all disciplines.
Prior to meeting in London for this year’s
Championships, 16 IAAF world competitions
from marathons to cross-country
and track races have been hosted in various
cities across the country. This tournament,
which is one of the most important
athletic events in the world, will gather
nearly 3,300 athletes, from more than 200
countries, to compete over 20 days.
The 700,000 tickets to attend the
Championship were first sold in a ballot in
August 2016 with additional releases of
tickets on sale since September on a first-
The International Association of
Athletics Federations (IAAF),
headquartered in Monaco since
1993, was originally founded in
Stockholm in 1912 as the
International Amateur Athletic
Federation aiming to standardise
programmes, equipment and world
record keeping as athletics grew in
importance. By the early 1980s,
amateurism was abandoned for
professionalism, funds were made
available to help athletes attain their
personal best, and athletics was no
longer confined to the Olympic
Games. Nowadays the association
governs 214 federations across the
world - an incredible growth since
the 17 original members in 1912 –
and supervises 24 events.
According to the latest statistics, 6% of children and 16% of working adults are
disabled. Of the total number of people classified as such,18.5% played sport
regularly in 2012 showing an increase of nearly 3% in six years while the
number of able-bodied athletes stayed at about 39%. Athletics comes in at 5th
position of the top sports practiced, after swimming (1st) and cycling (4th) so
there is plenty of room for involvement. As stressed by the UK Athletics
Federation, anyone can participate in athletics. Parallel Success is a platform
detailing information on how disabled people can participate in athletics. For
more information visit: www.academy.uka.org.uk/parallel-success/get-involved/
FOCUS The Magazine 29
Athletic games only really started in Britain in the 19th century, despite contests
in running, throwing and lifting, which had taken place across the UK since
Roman times. The year 1864 saw the first official competition between
Cambridge and Oxford. Since then there have been many athletic sport
clubs who have made it to the Hall of Fame alongside the likes of Harold
Abrahams and Sir Roger Bannister, who carried the colours of their universities.
Athletics is increasingly finding its place in the life of the nation, from the
internationally acclaimed London Marathon and its stars such as Paula Radcliffe
to the Commonwealth Games, both of which rival the Olympic Games in
popularity. How many of us regularly wear out our trainers? Today, should you
wish to find a club near you or take part in a competition, simply visit
The famous BBC children’s
programme Blue Peter, headed
by British track star Jessica Ennis-
Hill, launched a mascot design
competition in mid-January 2017.
Children between the ages of six
and 15 were invited to submit
drawings for two mascots. The
winner and two runners-up
received a VIP tour of the stadium
and have been invited to attend the
come, first-served basis through the official
Some may now also be found on
other traditional ticket sale and resale
In line with the increasing success of the
Paralympic competitions and the Olympic
Games in Rio (4,316 athletes, 528 medals,
2.15 million spectators) and the 147
medals brought back home by British
para-athletes, the authorities launched a
ticket offer scheme for school children in
Greater London in mid-January 2017.
Tickets were sold at £3 per child with free
access for an accompanying adult and free
transportation for children. The Mayor of
London viewed those 250,000 tickets sold
to schools as an opportunity to support
disabled athletes and provide children
with an incentive to reach their goals,
whatever limits they may encounter in life.
The organisers have made sure to promote
the 11 British competitors and a
timetable of their event appearances can
be found at
Should you not be fortunate enough to
have a ticket, or have already planned to
be away from London in July and August,
you can still stay well-informed by downloading
the IAAF app. This will allow you
to follow the news and results live, as well
as view photos and videos posted as the
events take place.
So, there is no excuse not to support
those athletes who once again will show
endurance and passion and give us that
boost to later tie up our laces and pull on
Cécile Faure is the founder and CEO of Emois Gourmands Ltd in London, a company sourcing and importing French
boutique wines and gourmet food, dedicated to the promotion of artisan products and advocate for sustainability. She
may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and through www.emoisgourmands.com
30 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
MY FAVOURITE THINGS
My favourite things
Madhubala Chaubey moved to the UK from India a year ago because of her
husband’s job. She has also lived in Kampala, Uganda. Madhu is fluent in
English, Hindi, Tamil and has a degree in Hotel Management and
Education. She is a foodie who thinks that Indian cuisine has variety and
balance but also loves Greek and Italian cuisine. Madhu is fascinated by
nature, historical monuments and museums.
Best advice to new arrivals
Join an organisation like FOCUS to meet people
and motivate yourself. take some tours to
discover the city.
the Old thameside Inn at Southwark –
an amazing location blending old and
The ultimate boutique
Harrods for the brands and the display.
Favourite place to shop
Your first memory of arriving
in the UK
Brilliant clear blue skies with sunshine and
rain along with cold, chilling winds.
I like the tube
especially the Metropolitan line.
Most fabulous hair salon
Gina Conway at
Westbourne Park –
‘the Real Greek’ in
Westfield and ‘Hazev’ for
vegetarian options and
The best place to
take the kids on a
Either the Natural
History Museum or the
My favourite museum
the British Museum.
The best spot to people watch
Most places have squares or the walkway along the
thames from London Bridge is a good place to watch
people go by.
London’s best-kept secret
the amount of history and art
that there is in every corner.
Hamleys toy shop caters to all ages.
Best thing about
London in Spring
the flowers everywhere and longer days.
Most watched British TV shows
Sherlock Holmes, British Sewing Bee, and the Great
What fascinates me about
their polite manners and ability to stand in a queue,
their soft speech and satirical comments.
What astounds me
the city’s planning and connectivity. Most places are
near to tube stations or a short walk from the bus
What confuses me
the usage of the same names
with a slight difference, which
all refer to different areas e.g.
Roxborough Lane, Roxborough
What makes London special
All the shows that cater for people of different
ages, the Royal Albert Hall for music, and the
theatres for children and adults.
What makes Londoners different
For me it’s their ability and willingness to work for
society by volunteering. I also like the pride they take
in their history and culture.
FOCUS The Magazine 31
Time Out (Free): Discover the best things
to do, free events, gigs and art exhibitions in
London and even book your theatre tickets.
Discover and explore new places to eat and
drink with curated lists of restaurants,
events, bars and things to do at the weekend.
Yplan (Free): This app is about making it as
simple as possible to discover and book
things to do in your city that evening. Film,
theatre, music, food and drink, performances,
comedy, culture, nightlife and sports. Browse
through a curated shortlist of the best
events near you and book in just two taps.
There is no need to print anything; everything
is 100% mobile.
DOJO (Free): Dojo helps you find the
coolest places to eat, drink and visit in
London. Just enter some simple preferences
and start getting recommendations tailored
to you. Every day the app’s staff finds the
best things to do in the city, focusing on independent,
quirky, hidden gems that you will
love, but probably don’t know about.
Integrates with Uber and Citymapper.
Foursquare (Free): Find the best places to
eat, drink, shop, or visit in any city in the
world. Save them so that Foursquare learns
what you like and leads you to places you’ll
32 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
Fever (Free): Selects events you want to see,
based on your interests including: Food and
drink (bars, wine and beer tasting, brunch
spots, etc.) Nightlife (clubs, guest lists, access
to private shows, etc.) Performance (music
festivals, concerts, theatres, comedy shows,
etc.) Film (cinema tickets, pop-up movie
screenings, themed film nights) Art (museums,
galleries, exhibitions, artists’ openings, etc.)
Fashion (pop-up stores, runway shows, launch
parties, etc.) Charity (galas, fundraising events,
volunteer initiatives, etc.)
KweekWeek (Free): KweekWeek is an
events marketplace that connects organisers
and consumers in a single space and offers
promotions, ticketing, updates and recommendations.
You can browse by either date
or category: art and culture, charity, classes
and workshops, conferences and exhibitions,
festivals, food and drinks, health and wellbeing,
kids and family, networking, nightlife,
shows, sports, students and technology.
Hype (Free): This app focuses on art, parties,
food, architecture and outdoor activities.
Hype is based on influencer networks, a
group of people from different backgrounds
who are passionate about the cities in which
they live. Each curator has a different focus
and neighbourhood. They keep an eye on
what’s cool, trending, and happening right
Stagedoor (Free): For the London theatrelover.
Find out what’s on where and when.
Follow directors, casts and venue; find out first
about any London show and get notifications
when shows are closing so you don’t miss
out; leave reviews and let your friends know
what you’ve seen.
Frugl (Free): Daily offers and events in
London at a price to suit your pocket. Find
out free or discounted events around
DesignMyNight (Free): Discover and book
your perfect night out. Browse and book into
London’s top bars, restaurants, pubs and
clubs, as well as buy tickets to the hand-picked
selection of London’s best events. These include
anything from pop-up bars to rooftop
cinema, secret supper clubs to immersive theatre
events, offers, hot tickets, best restaurants,
quirky events, sports, fun birthday ideas
and much more.
InList (Free): InList makes booking nightlife
and special events easier than ever. The app
grants you reservations when you want
them, with a nightlife expert in the palm of
your hand. It’s like being treated as a local
VIP 24/7 in the most exciting destinations in
the world, including London. Purchase tickets
to concerts, sporting events and film festivals
such as Wimbledon and the Super Bowl to
the Cannes International Film Festival and
MTV Video Music Awards.
SocialNightlife (Free): This app offers an
easy, fun, and social way to experience the
best nightlife. Explore thousands of venues
and events in more than 100 cities across
the world, connect with other attendees
wherever you go, and earn rewards for
Yule Nightlife (Free): Connect with friends
and find real-time information for bars,
nightclubs, events, breweries, and bowling alleys
wherever you are. With Yule, you can
quickly link to reliable social content from
Google, Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. You
can post photos, videos, and text to share
your nightlife experiences with others
nearby, or even post anonymously! You can
also Follow your favourite venues and
events to instantly access their profiles.
In our next issue be sure to look for our roundup of the best children’s apps.
FOCUS The Magazine 33
EVENTS & SEMINARS
FOCUS Events & Seminars
C A R E E R
Life begins just
comfort zone –
How to grow your confidence
Thursday, 11th May 10.30 – 12.30.
Free for members, £25 for non-members
Every new challenge requires one thing: the
confidence to take the first step. Yet most of us
battle with self-doubt from time to time – holding
us back and keeping us from achieving our goals.
In this interactive workshop, executive leadership
and career coach Karin Mueller will provide an
insight into the nature of such self-doubt and will
introduce participants to tools and techniques to
overcome it and grow their self-confidence.
Spaces are limited, so book early to avoid
Career networking evening
Thursday, 18th May 18.30 – 20.30.
Free for members and non-members
We invite current and former Career Workshop
participants as well as those members looking for
work in the UK to join us for a networking evening
at FOCUS. this will be a great opportunity to meet
or catch up with former workshop graduates as
well as a few of FOCUS Career Coaches. Don’t
miss the chance to hear what jobs other members
have landed – their successes are very inspiring!
Guided tour of the Lord’s
Saturday, 13th May 16.00–17.00. £20 per adult,
£12 per child (5-15 years old and students with a
valid student ID) at St John's Wood Rd NW8 8QN
Join us for an exclusive opportunity to see one of
the most iconic sights in British sport: Lord’s. What is
the history of cricket and that of this fabulous playing
ground? Why is it called Lord’s? Join us behind the
scenes to explore the secrets of the “Home of
Cricket” and learn about its fascinating story!
Middlesex versus Surrey at Lord's
Check out our website for a complete listing of upcoming events & seminars. www.focus-info.org
34 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017
EVENTS & SEMINARS
YOU IN THE UK
IN THE UK
Breakfast at FOCUS
Wednesday, 3rd May 10.00 – 12.00.
Free for members and non-members
Join us for an informal social gathering at our office.
take this opportunity to meet other FOCUS
members and our energetic team and to learn
more about our programmes and upcoming events.
You are welcome to bring along a guest.
The parent factor: the role of a parent in
their child’s education
Monday, 8th May 10.30 – 12.30.
Free for members, £25 for non-members at FOCUS
We are delighted to welcome back at FOCUS Ed
Richardson, Director of Education at Keystone, for a
presentation that will help you understand better the
role parents can play in their children’s learning. Ed’s
talk will encourage parents to think critically about
different approaches to learning, to challenge a few
basic assumptions about the school-student-parent
paradigm and to consider the parental role in a child’s
education. With exam-time approaching, Ed will also
give some tips on how to help children deal with
homework and make the revision process more
effective. the talk is suitable for parents with children
of all ages but will be particularly applicable for
primary school age children.
FOCUS The Magazine 35
as our Platinum
We are grateful for the invaluable support of our sponsors including
those not listed below, see www.focus-info.org for further details.
P L At I N U M
We move, lend, invest and
protect money worldwide
Beacon Financial Education
Educating expats for
global financial health
Knight Frank LLP
the local estate agent with a
and legal advice
G O L D
ACS International Schools
International and American
the World’s Leading Art
Where Global Mobility
Professionals learn, connect
London’s number one private
A leader in financial services
Shell International Ltd
Major oil, gas and chemical
Global financial services firm
S I LV E R
The American School
Providing insurance, savings and
investment products worldwide
British American Tobacco
World’s most international
Providing bespoke tax advice
and compliance services to
protect your wealth
Dwight School London
Igniting the spark of genius
in every child
A major integrated
European Bank for
Investing in countries from
Central Europe and
For the recruitment of
professional domestic staff
Jaffe & Co/American Tax
US and UK tax services
Educating young women to
become future global leaders
State Street Bank
& Trust Company
Signature financial group
TASIS The American School
and IB diploma
A leading international
law firm advising individuals
B R O N Z E
Professional UK body of the
PIMCO Europe Ltd
tax and advisory
services for public and
36 FOCUS The Magazine May/June 2017