Family, a little bit of crazy, a little bit of loud, a whole lot of love! <3

This week has really got me thinking about family and how lucky I am to have amazing people in my life! It’s also given me time to think about what and who is important to me.

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In the “olden” days family was your blood, your typical 2.4 children family. Nowadays family can and does come in different forms. Your family is not just the family your were born into.

I am lucky to have my wonderfully supportive Mum and Dad who have always been there for me through the good and bad times. My poor Dad has moved me more times than he’d care to mention from Cleethorpes to London, London (twice cos I’d miscalculated the amount of stuff I had) to Scotter, Scotter to Manchester, four house moves whilst in Manchester, Manchester to Scotter and finally Scotter to Cleethorpes….let’s hope that’s the last time eh Dad! 😉

I have my brother Daniel, his wife (my new Sister-In-Law yay) Kreshma and her little girl, my niece who always manages to make me laugh!

I also have my super supportive and loving partner John who makes me laugh and smile every day, as well as his family who have welcomed me into their family with open arms!

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But I have family that aren’t “related” to me at all, my friends, one of which I met when I was four years old on the first day of school (Mel), those I met throughout my school life and then those who I have met on my travels around the country and world. I am very lucky to have them, lending an ear when I need a moan, enjoying a crazy night out (although Party Gemma takes a bit of a back seat these days) and being there to celebrate my acomplishments and life goals.

Family to me means supporting each other, being able to be honest, tell each other when they are wrong (I do listen sometimes Mum honestly), loving each other no matter what and being there through the good and the bad times.

Sadly not all people have family or friends to fall back on, according to Age UK almost a million older people in the UK go for a more than a month without speaking to anyone. This isn’t just an issue with the older genration though, according to a report in the Independent young people (aged 16-24) feel lonelier than any other age group. Charities such as Friendship at Home and Not Home Alone (links below) do fantastic work helping to combat isolation and loneliness across North East Lincolnshire to improve older people’s quality of life.

I think that community is so important and after living in a couple of big cities I think North East Lincolnshire has a fantastic community feel to it, I am sure not everyone will agree but I feel lucky to have the support I mentioned above but also the support with my blog from people I don’t know and the wider business community.

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If we can help to do our little bit and support those closest to us, but also support people we don’t know. Building people up not tearing them down I think the world would be a better place and hopefully “Helping one person might not change the whole world, but it could change the world for one person”.

G x

Links:
Friendship at Home: http://www.friendshipathome.org.uk/
Not Home Alone: https://www.facebook.com/NotHomeAlone/
Independet Article: https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/young-people-loneliness-intense-study-a8563056.html

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Meet the Local: James Daniel

Let’s meet James Daniel……..

#1 Tell me a little bit about yourself? 

I’m James, I am 36 and I mainly work as a quantity surveyor. I also have a commercial drone licence. My passions are walking, photography and reading.

#2 Have you always lived in North East Lincolnshire?

No. I was working away a lot and actually ended up moving to near London, which was never part of my plan. I love London as a tourist, but really didn’t enjoy working there. I moved back to North East Lincolnshiret two and a half years ago, and I think it’s easily the best decision I made.

#3 What is your favourite thing to do in the area? 

Walking down by the beach. If I have a few hours, I’ll often walk from the docks to the Humber Mouth Yacht Club.

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#4 Where are your favourite places to shop? 

I don’t do a huge amount of shopping, but I like the boutiques of Seaview Street in Cleethorpes. St Peters Avenue and nearby has some good independent local butchers and grocers.

#5 Where is your favourite place to eat?

Tedici in Abbeygate does the best pizza in the area in my opinion and has a lovely cosy atmosphere. But I think the area is blessed with lots of quality independent restaurants.

#6 Tell me what a perfect North East Lincolnshire day would look like to you? 

I’d watch the sun rise, either on a walk or with the camera – being on the East Coast the sunrises are often spectacular. I’d pop to Riverhead Coffee on St Peters Avenue for breakfast. Then I’d head to Cleethorpes library to read my book. Lunch would be taken with delicious fish and chips at Ocean Fish Bar, again on St Peters Avenu, followed by a long walk to the yacht club and possibly on towards Tetney to walk it off, stopping off at the Signal Box Inn for a refreshment on the way back.

Finally, I’d head over to Grimsby for dinner with pizza at Tedici and wash that down with a couple of pints at Docks Beers.

#7 If someone was new to the area what would be the first thing you’d tell them to do / check out? 

I think there’s so much to check out that is a really difficult question! I still work away a fair bit and when I get back I’m craving to see the beach and the coast, so I’d suggest they get themselves there. Otherwise, book a brewery tour at Docks Beers or explore the National Fishing Heritage Centre to get a feel for the history of the area.

#8 If you could change one thing about North East Lincolnshire what would it be?

I think there are a lot of derelict and underused areas that have huge potential; I’d love to see them redeveloped, but I understand that this is likely to require huge sums of money. Companies such as Orsted setting up big operations in the area is a huge plus, and I hope they will attract investment to the area in terms of suppliers co-locating etc.

#9 Do you have a “go to” place to chill out, relax and unwind? 

The driftwood bench on the bit of beach in front of the beach huts. Not many people head out that way so it’s typically very quiet and I find watching the ships head to and from the North Sea is very calming.

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#10 What is the best thing about living in North East Lincolnshire?

For me, it’s a combination of things. I’m drawn to the coast more as I’m older, even though I can’t swim and I don’t surf or paddle board!

Plus there’s a huge range of independent restaurants and shops and I think the cost of property is cheap compared to many areas of the country.

Brilliant thank you for that James, was great to get to know a little more about you and your North East Lincs world!

If you’d like to check out some of James’s work you can follow him on Instagram @jameswdaniel

Look out for the next “Meet the Local” and if you’d like to be featured on the blog yourself drop me an email girlupnorthblog@outlook.com

G ❤

** all photos taken by James

Meet the Local: Gemma Robinson (Yes Me)

I am going to be doing a series of “Meet the Local” blog posts. Some of these people will be friends of mine, people I meet through my work, or people who are inspiring within the town.

So I though it only fitting I kick it off with me answering the questions I am going to be asking everyone else, so here we go…….

#1 Tell me a little bit about yourself?

I’m Gemma, I am 35 years young! I live in Cleethorpes with my boyfriend John and I work for HCUK Training with businesses across the whole of the Humber, including my beloved Cleethorpes.

I love reading especially crime thrillers, business and personal growth books, writing (as you can probably tell from the blog) and being outdoors.

2# Have you always lived in North East Lincolnshire?

I was born in Cleethorpes and lived here until I was 27. I then moved to London the plan was to stay there for around two years but ended up staying for five. My next move was to Manchester where I spent three years and must say this place is my second home. I love Manchester, it’s people and it’s vibe! It’ll always hold a special place in my heart.

In July 2018 I moved back to Cleethorpes and the rest is history!

3# What is your favourite thing to do in the area?

Be outdoors, be that at the beach or going for a walk in one of our many green spots like Peoples Park, Weelsby Woods or walking from Cleethorpes out to Tetney I just love being outside and in nature.

There’s also just as much to do in the Winter as there is in the Summer! Winter walks are the best!

4# Where are your favourite places to shop?

I love all the small, independent retailers that have popped up in Cleethorpes. Forw4rd in Cleethorpes for clothes. The new Arttopia on Grant Street for a mix of fun, quirky retailers like Clee Glass and Art Dollz (I will get one of these on my shelf soon). Seaview Street is cool for little independents. Coastal Silver is one of my go to places for silver jewellery I love their stuff! John’s Mum & Daughter did a jewellery workshop there too recently and absolutely loved it so it’s definitely on my to-do list.

#5 Where is your favourite place to eat?

This is a tough question as there are so many great places:

Browns Cafe on the seafront for a full English
Riverhead Coffee for a lighter breakfast (avocado on toast with bacon is amazing) or sunshine smoothie
Papas Fish and Chips are AMAZING

#6 Tell me what a perfect North East Lincolnshire day would look like to you?

Wake up early, grab a coffee and go down to the seafront to see the gorgeous sunrise. I’d then take a picnic to the beach and spend the whole day there paddle-boarding (or at least sitting on it whilst John paddles me around haha), lazing in the sun, building sandcastles, eating fish and chips, not forgetting an ice-cream.

Then on the evening going for a walk along the seafront, maybe stopping at the The Punchbowl for a drink (the staff there are lovely).

7# If someone was new to the area what would be the first thing you’d tell them to do / check out?

There are so many places it’s hard to pick one! When I’ve been away visiting friends in the cities I always want to get back to nature.

8# If you could change one thing about North East Lincolnshire what would it be?

The entrance into Grimsby from the A180, it’s a little grim and grey! Also be nice see some investment into Cleethorpe Road, so many empty shops down there which is such a shame. There is a lot of regeneration going on in Cleethorpes and Grimsby right now like Freeman Street, the Kasbah, the docks so can’t wait to see all of that come into fruition.

9# Do you have a “go to” place to chill out, relax and unwind?

When I need some time out from the hustle and bustle there’s nothing better than a drive down to the beach near the fitties. Seeing all the quirky little chalets, the beach down that end tends to be quite peaceful and not as commercial. Especially in the morning when it’s quiet. The perfect place to go to chill out and recharge.

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10# What is the best thing about living in North East Lincolnshire?

Being by the sea! But feel like I’ve bigged that up enough! So…..one of the big things that has stood out to me since moving back to the area is the business culture in the area, there’s so much going on it’s amazing! The way people help each other and support each other in the business world here is fantastic. People want to see other businesses thriving, it’s very refreshing after the cut throat world of the big cities. It’s so welcoming and friendly!

Hope you have enjoyed that little insight into me and my North East Lincs! Look out for more “Meet the Locals” posts and if you’d like to feature yourself drop me an email girlupnorthblog@outlook.com.

G ❤

 

 

 

Make Your Yes Mean Yes and Your No Mean No!

Today I attended the Fluent Coaching North East Lincs Business Breakfast held at Forest Pines. It’s always a pleasure meeting local businesses and hearing the inspiring talks. Today was no exception and also very apt with it being Mental Health Awareness week…….

Vicki from Pocket Rocket Housekeeping Rescue took centre stage speaking about the pressures of life in general and being a working parent.

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I am not a parent so I don’t understand the pressures of parenthood, but I do understand pressures of life and the things it throws at us. Most of us now juggle working full time, family, friends, events, paying bills etc. and that’s not including the unexpected things that pop up in our paths, life can be tough! But it can also be amazing!

Taking time to think about what is important to us and what makes us happy is essential. It’s your life and you should feel comfortable in the things you do and how you spend your time.

Also taking time to ask for help weather than be in business or in your personal life! I’ve noticed such a strong, supportive business community being back in Cleethorpes and people generally want to help which is amazing!

With all the pressures in life we need people we can reach out and talk to, it’s easy to spiral and get stressed, anxious or depressed. It’s also so important to take time out for ourselves to recharge. I attended an event a while back and the chap speaking said “protect the asset” the asset being us! I’ve never forgotten that and now always take some time for me whether that’s a lazy day in watching tv shows with John, a bubble bath, or pamper night, a walk in nature. Just a little bit of time for me to take stock and refresh.

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John Borland of Fluent Coaching asked the question “how honest are you?”, how honest do you think you are? How many times have you agreed to something or attended something you didn’t want to because you felt like you had to? How would you feel saying “no I don’t want to come to your party”? In life sometimes we have to do things we don’t want to, but sometimes it’s OK to say no! Sometimes what we want and need is the most important thing.

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I am going to try and be more aware of when I am saying yes to something that I really don’t want to do and try to be more honest with myself about what I want or don’t want. Make Your Yes Mean Yes and Your No Mean No!

Have a fab week!

G x

Somewhere that’s green…….

As I previously mentioned I am running Race for Life with my Dad in a few weeks time, so this has meant having to get my bottom off the sofa and into my running shoes again. It’s for an amazing cause and one that is very close to my heart after loosing my wonderful Nan to cancer.

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I love to run it’s one of my favourite things to do when I am feeling stressed or anxious to clear my head, it also just makes me feel great! There’s something about putting on some music and hitting the pavement to clear my head. However, I do struggle to get that motivation to get out there and do it, I’m sure I’m not the only one who feels like this!

So last week Dad came round after work and we got our running shoes on for a run in my local green area, Sydney Park. The rain decided to make an appearence but we persevered and completed our Couch to 5k session, we also got a few hello’s from the locals walking their (very cute) dogs.

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Whilst running and inbetween chatting to my Dad (no, even running doesn’t stop me talking) I got to thinking how lucky we are to have places like the park in which we can spend time. Be that for a run, a picnic, a stroll with the dog or just time with the kids on the play area. Parks are such a hub of fun and community!

The parks in the areas seem to have had a sprucing up over the years and are more of a pleasure to be in so I hope that people continue to respect our green areas to allow people to continue enjoying them! I myself am really looking forward to the summer so I can spend more time outdoors, having picnics and enjoying the fresh air.

Have a fab week!

G x

Meet the Business: Alfred Enderby

When I moved back to Cleethorpes I was pleasantly surprised to hear one of my old colleagues Patrick Salmon was the proud owner of Alfred Enderby’s on Grimsby Docks.

Alfred Enderby has been smoking fish in a traditional way for over 100 years since it’s inception back in 1918. It has enjoyed many years of success thanks to the Enderby family and in 2016 Patrick took hold of the reigns and has continued that success.

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Impressively they have won numerous awards including runner up for “Best Individual Product” in the Slow Food London Awards, in 2017 they won Producer of the Year at the Lincolnshire Life Magazine Taste of Excellence Awards and have also received two Great Taste Awards from the Guild of Fine Foods in 2018. Most impressively their Grimsby Traditional Smoked Haddock has being awarded PGI (Protected Geographical Indication) status which protects a regional food that has a specific quality, reputation or other characteristics attributable to that area.

After bumping into Patrick at a networking event he invited me down to the smoke house for a tour. So, on the 2nd April I put on my wellies and headed down to Grimsby Docks to see where the magic happens. It’s been a long time since I visited the docks and felt a little nostalgic with this little trip down memory lane.

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My tour started with Patrick showing me where they bring in the fresh fish each morning from Grimsby Fish Market, so early starts all round! It’s then filleted by their expert filleters removing all the bones. The following stage is the curing which is brining for haddock and salting for salmon. Next the fun bit, the smoking! The fish is placed into huge smoking chimneys, smouldering sawdust is placed over fresh sawdust and the smoking begins. Naturally formed tar is inside the chimneys and I must say I have never seen tar look so pretty! The fish is then packed and chilled ready for delivery.

Not only do Enderby’s deliver to wholesalers across the country, supply Michelin star restaurants in the big smoke, they also deliver across the UK straight to your door!

I was able to take some of this gorgeous smoked fish home with me. I cooked the haddock that evening which (as per Patrick’s recommendation) I cooked with spinach, cream and a little mustard. All I can say is WOW it was the best fish I’ve ever had. He also recommended other recipes I am yet to try out and I am secretly hoping an Alfred Enderby cook book will be on the horizon (hint hint).

It was fantastic to see the smoking process and the impressive chimneys in the smoke house. I would 100% recommend popping down to see how it’s done. Massive thank you to Patrick for showing me his world!

Companies like Alfred Enderby are a credit to our local business community and I can’t wait to see what they have up their sleeves in the future.

G x

Family time!

So this week I have been back in my lovely hometown after a fab holiday! It’s been a week of relaxing and spending time with family.

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Sunday was a very lazy day for John and I we literally closed the curtains and had one of those awesome lazy Sundays catching up on all the TV we missed whilst away. Caught up on Game of Thrones (OMG can’t wait for the next episode) and Line of Duty (I think I heard the whole nation gasp at the end.

Monday we had a day sunning ourselves in John’s folks garden, a lovely walk for ice-creams around People’s Park although was a little sad to see quite a bit of rubbish in the water as it’s been done up so nicely and is such a lovely park! Litter is one of my pet hates! John’s Mum cooked us a lovely tea (thank you John’s Mum).

The rest of the week has been back to work, had the usual holiday blues but fortunately I love my job at HCUK Training, I am a Staffing Consultant there so get to spend lots of time out meeting businesses and networking which is ideal for me as I am definitely a people person.

I did manage to pop into one of my favourite shops this week, Forw4rd (on Market Street) to pick up some Stance socks (we have a bit of a Stance sock addiction) and had a chat with the lovely Laura (check out Forw4rd here @forw4rd).

The folks also came round this week for a cuppa and a catch up. Had a chat with my Dad and his training plans because he’s running Race for Life with me this year and has never run a day in his life so he’s been giving it a go this week and doing well I might add! Well done Dad! It’s the first year they are letting men enter and I think it’s AWESOME. It’s something I’ve done every year for around the last 4 years. So really excited to be doing it with him this year. Need to get my running shoes back on though as it’s been a while and he’ll be out-running me if I don’t get into shape!

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This week I also joined a fantastic group after a kind invite, Totally Locally NEL (@totallylocallynelincs) who are spreading the word on local businesses. After popping a post about the blog on their Facebook Group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/TotallyLocallyNELincs/) about potential interviews I was amazed by all the fantastic businesses in the town who want to get involved. I am not going to be short of a cuppa or something to do for the next few months so watch this space for all the exciting things I have planned.

I am writing this with a very full tummy after a lovely home-cooked roast from John’s Mum (we do feed ourselves sometimes, honestly) and after a movie morning with John and his son at Parkway Cinema watching Avengers End Game which without giving away spoilers made me blub into my popcorn.

Hope you all have a fantastic week!

G x

 

Small town, big ideas!

I’ve been lucky enough over the years to work for, meet with and work alongside some fantastic businesses in the big cities of Manchester and London, as well as attending numerous networking events and conferences.

I thought I’d have a HUGE shock to the system moving back to my little old hometown of Cleethorpes and shock I did have……in a good way! I have been pleasently surprised by the business community of Cleethorpes (and surrounding areas).

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The business community here is thriving, with compaines such as Siemens Gamesa, Orsted etc. growing their hubs here in North East Lincolnshire as well as lots of independent businesses growing within the town.

I have had the pleasure of meeting with a number of these so far both at individual meetings as well as at networking events like the Fluent Coaching event I attended this morning. Fluent (https://fluentcoaching.com/) run a monthly event at Forest Pines, it’s really informal (which I love) and they also run their AoSBO (Association of Small Business Owners) session which are fantastic for people who run their own business but want that support and community. Definitely an event to check out if you’re local.  John Borland is particularly engaging with his talks at the end of the sessions, this week it was getting us all to think about our cryptonite.

The Business Hive (https://businesshive.net/) are also a great resource for businesses. I met with Jo Taylor their Deputy Manager a little while ago to find out more about what they do and it’s clear they are passionate about local businesses. They offer a number of services to local businesses and recently opened a hub in Scunthorpe. The Business Hive also hold some fab events for non-members around different sectors which are always really informative and interesting.

I also visited Alfred Enderby (https://alfredenderby.co.uk/) recently and their owner Patrick Salmon (yes that’s his real name) was kind enough to give me the tour! Honestly, go down for a visit it is very impressive. They recently joined forces with another local success Docks Beers this Good Friday mooring their ‘Ro Ro’ boat serving their yummy fishcakes to Docs customers. It’s fab to see local businesses collaborating and working together.

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That is definitely one thing that has stood out to me in the business community around here, the support that companies give each other, really wanting each other to do well and succeed. It’s fantastic seeing how the town is growing and that there is a strong business community here, one I am proud to be a part of!

I am always open to attending new networking events in the town so if you know of any please do let me know about them!

Take care!

G x

Oh I do like to be beside the Lake Side!

So this week was a little different I spent it in the beautiful Lake District with John, his three children, then later in the week his Mum & Dad came down too. We stayed in a beautiful cottage in Braithwaite somewhere John came with his Grandma and Grandad as a child.

I know this is a little off subject (and not about Cleethorpes) but here is a list of places I’d recommend visiting in the lakes:

Whinlatter Park: this is an awesome place for adults and kids. So many fun things to do including Go Ape and lots of different trails through the forest. Also some BEAUTIFUL views over the lakes.

 

Derwent Water (Keswick): Derwent is one of my favourite places to go in the lakes. We hired a boat this time which is something I’ve not done before and a great way to cruise across the lake. We have previously done the walk around Derwent Water which took around six hours, with lots of places to see along the way (I won’t ruin the surprise).

 


Lingholme Kitchen: we stumbled upon this place last time we visited the lakes at New Year and was great to go back and visit again. It’s a lovely little cafe in the middle of the woods, they have a Beatrix Potter garden and do yummy homemade sausage rolls. Also a fab Earl Grey tea!

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The Lake District is a very special place for me, being there this week has made me realise how much I love being inthe outdoors and how good it makes me feel being out in such beautiful surroundings, in the fresh air. So, we have made a promise that we will find some time each week to get outside.

Do you have any places to recommend for local walks? I’d love to hear about them.

Have a fab week!

G x

 

You can’t buy happiness but you can buy local!

I am a bit late posting this week, sorry this should have gone up Sunday but I am currently in the Lake District on my hols. posts I thought for my weekly posts write about my week and what I have been up to.

Last week was a busy one, as I write this I am in the Lake District with John on our hols! So this week has been a crazy one of last minute shopping, washing and packing, all whilst getting things tied up at work. So a lot of this week has been spent between Hull and Cleethorpes.

I still managed to fit in a lovely Cleethorpes jaunt before heading off. I was lucky enough to work from home on Friday so at 4:00pm when I’d finished it we jumped in Johns car and head down to the beach near the yacht club where we sat and ate our tea. It was one of those perfect Cleethorpes days where the sun was shining but with a crisp chilly breeze.

Whilst there we got onto the subject of how amazing it is to see all the small, local businesses popping up in Cleethorpes. From the cafes, to the jewellery makers like Clee Glass (@cleeglass) who are my go to for seaglass jewellery, the consortium businesses like Original Emporium (@originalemporiumcleethorpes) and Arrtopia (@arrtopia_cleethorpes) who house some awesome local artists and businesses, to the clothes shops like Forw4rd (@forw4rd). I love how Cleethorpes is becoming a little, thriving hub of independents and also how the local people support them it’s so lovely to see! I can’t wait the see more companies pop up in the future.

It’s been a busy week so I am going to leave it there and go enjoy my glass of red I have waiting for me. I’ll be back with a post Wednesday, in the meantime check out some of the places I’ve mentioned and as ever if you have any places you recommend I try out please let me know in the comments!

Have a fab week!

G x