My chat with… author Sue Wilsher

Sue Wilsher, When My Ship Come In, Essex, by Katy Pearson

In print: How this feature first appeared

LONG before Thurrock became known for Lakeside, East Tilbury was already somewhat famous for Bata shoe factory.

Founded in 1932 (it closed in 2005) its company town set-up was unique in Britain, offering its thousands of workers housing, schools, entertainment – and even its own newspaper.

And it was this Bata way of life that provided the inspiration for Linford born and bred Sue Wilsher’s debut novel, When My Ship Comes In, now out in paperback. Continue reading

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Today I’m trying… baby first aid with St John’s Ambulance

“Learning baby CPR is like having car insurance – you hope you never need it, but if you do need it you’re ever so grateful you have it.”

Katy Pearson pregnant - picture by Sarah Briggs

Baby first aid: Putting this worried mama-to-be’s mind slightly more at ease (PHOTO BY SARAH BRIGGS)

These are the opening words said in my three-hour baby first aid class with St John’s Ambulance.

The sessions, which are held all over Essex, cover everything from the correct recovery position for babies (cradled in your arms with their head tilted downwards – not on the floor on their side like adults), CPR and choking to dealing with fevers, croup and burns.

At eight-months pregnant with my first child, and by nature something of a worrier, I was prompted to take the class after the UK’s leading first aid charity aired its new Nursery Rhymes Inc advert – in which a short video featuring the stars of Nursery Rhymes Inc shows how to do baby CPR.

The campaign was launched after parents told the charity that their baby not breathing was the first aid emergency they feared the most, yet only one in four knew what to do.

I was soon to be one of them. And the thought of being clueless – or doing the wrong thing – should I ever find myself in that nightmare situation, quite frankly terrified me. Continue reading

Restaurant review: The Garden Restaurant at Orsett Hall

By the husband (Gary Pearson)

ENJOYING the beautiful late evening sun, sipping a gin and tonic seated within the vast and beautiful grounds at Orsett Hall, I found myself thinking life could be a lot worse…

The Garden Restaurant at Orsett Hall, Gary Pearson

The Garden Restaurant at Orsett Hall, Gary Pearson

Orsett Hall is a lovely place and I was more than looking forward to sampling the restaurant’s summer menu.
It wasn’t long before I realised the food was every bit as good as the view.

My wife Katy went for soup of the day for a starter, while I opted for the poached langoustines. Delicious would be an understatement.

Mine came with a gorgeous little lump of crispy pork, a chervil (French parsley) and mango mayonnaise. A truly heavenly surf ’n’ turf. Continue reading