Friday, 30 May 2008

News from Cancer Research UK

Sean Connery puts women in Double-0 Heaven!
Bond star motivates women the most

With a new Bond book out this week, it’s been revealed that Sir Sean Connery is the celebrity that women think of the most when exercising, according to research released today. After time spent training, working out, or jogging, women have revealed that it is the dashing Scot that motivates them to finish, in a survey of over 1,000 women by Cancer Research UK.

Interestingly Connery pipped contemporary heartthrob David Beckham to the post, whilst fiery chef Gordon Ramsay and handsome Royal Prince William came third and fourth respectively. Simon Cowell also featured, taking the fifth place spot on the list.

The survey was commissioned to mark Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life 2008 series and looked to find out which celebrities would motivate women to get to the finish line. Now in its 15th year, Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life is the largest women-only fundraising series in the UK. Women of all ages and fitness levels are invited to walk, jog or run 5k at over 260 events across the UK this summer. The charity is hoping 750,000 women will take part and help raise over £50 million for vital research into beating cancer.

As well as seeking to find every woman’s ideal celebrity that motivates them to get to the finish line, the survey also revealed that women would most like to go for a walk, jog or run with the female cast of Friends. Whilst New Yorkers, Rachel, Monica and Phoebe were their preferred choice of training partners, somewhat surprisingly, the Golden Girls came second in the survey. Third place went to those Desperate Housewives and the Sex and the City women and Girls Aloud made it into the chart in fourth and fifth place respectively.

Natasha Woodford, head of Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life said of the findings: ‘It was surprising to find that Sean Connery beat David Beckham, who regularly tops the poll of the world’s best looking men. But whether it’s a famous heartthrob or a family member, it’s always a good incentive to have someone waiting for you at the finish line, and we’re sure there will be lots of people supporting our Race for Life participants at the events this year.”

Women can enter their nearest Race for Life event by visiting or calling 0871 641 2282.

For further information please contact Laura Bryce at Frank PR on 0202 7693 6999 or

Notes to Editors
About Survey Results:
Top Five Celebs to greet you at the finish line:
1st: Sean Connery
2nd: David Beckham
3rd: Gordon Ramsay
4th: Prince William
5th: Simon Cowell

Top Five Celeb groups to walk or jog with:
1st: The Friends Girls
2nd: The Golden Girls
3rd: Desperate Housewives ladies
4th: The Sex and the City girls
5th: Girls Aloud

Thursday, 29 May 2008

News from Brylcreem

Death of the masculine man?
- Over 60% of young British blokes admit they’re not masculine -

A study into the state of masculinity in Britain by iconic men’s grooming brand Brylcreem reveals a shocking insight into the masculinity of blokes today. Conducted to celebrate 80 years of the Brylcreem brand’s heritage, ‘The Brylcreem Mandom Report 2008’ delves into the changing behaviours and attitudes of men aged 18-29 over the past eight decades, asking the eternal question – what maketh the man?

The results of the study show that over the last 80 years men have steadily lost touch with their instinctual masculinity and the traditional roles that defined them, as they’ve put down their handyman tools, lost their foothold as the ‘man of the house’, become obsessed with their image and abandoned emotional restraint.

An average young bloke in the 1920s and 40s considered himself to be masculine and was at ease with his role as stoic provider and protector. He was adept at traditional ‘manly’ chores, with 73% competent at motor mechanics, 90% able to change a fuse and 80% able to put up a shelf for his Mrs. He was the head of his household and would rather die than cry infront of someone, with half never shedding a tear at all. When it came to the home, only 25% knew how to turn the iron on and just 27% were comfortable in the kitchen.

Over the decades a lot has changed - these days, a young British bloke is more comfortable ironing than getting under his car bonnet. Over 60% are competent ironers, with only 10% able to maintain a car and almost half can’t even change a tyre. Three quarters regularly don an apron in the kitchen and almost 80% take on housework. Young men are so in touch with their emotions, a whopping 85% are comfortable crying in front of others.

Young blokes are also more obsessed with themselves than any other generation, with today’s young gun taking 26% longer in front of the mirror than his counterpart in the 40s and two thirds striving to attain a perfectly toned body.

James Brown, founding editor of men’s magazine, Loaded, who fueled the 90s era of the ‘Loaded Lad’, believes British blokes have been sliding into the process of what he coins ‘Gender Surrender’:

“A bloke’s masculinity used to come effortlessly and his place in the world was clear cut. Nowadays, women are confident and men are confused. As men have been reacting to being told ‘how they should behave’ rather than ‘how they really are’, they’ve crossed the line from just ‘changing with the times’ to committing outright gender surrender”.

According to The Brylcreem Mandom Report 2008, young British women agree that men have stepped too far into the feminine domain and want their ‘real men’ back, with two thirds of women aged 18-29 complaining they think men are not as masculine as men of yesteryear. A girl also still wants her leading man, with 60% saying they’d prefer a man to take control in their relationship.

“There’s no need for men to head back to the cave”, Brown says, “but it’s clear from the research that a more defined identity needs to be established.”

So come on men, put down your manbags, leave your eyeliner at home and reclaim your Mandom!

- Ends –

Notes to editors:
20s 60s 80s 2000s
Admit to not being masculine 35% 34% 53% 61%
Competent under the bonnet 73% 61% 25% 10%
Know how to iron 25% 32% 36% 62%
Admit crying 52% 66% 72% 85%
Time taken to get ready 23 mins 25 mins 26 mins 29 mins

*The research for Brylcreem was carried out online by between 08/02/08 and 21/02/08 amongst a nationally representative sample of 1,291 UK men aged 18+ and amongst a nationally representative sample of 1,439 UK women aged 18+.

Wednesday, 28 May 2008

News from Virgin Media

Artist creates edible exhibition of top TV shows

EastEnders, a Dalek and Boris made with the nation’s favourite foods

Renowned food artist Prudence Emma Staite has unveiled the ultimate in TV dinners – artwork of the nation’s favourite TV shows made entirely from food. The works were commissioned by Virgin Media to mark the full launch of BBC iPlayer on their on-demand television service, the first time that viewers have been able to access the BBC iPlayer catch-up service via a TV platform.

The artwork will be part of an exhibition called ‘TV Dinners’ and uses the nation’s most popular foods to recreate famous scenes and characters from BBC programmes. The artwork includes the EastEnders’ River Thames title scene made from bangers n’ mash, The Weakest Link’s Anne Robinson out of cakes and biscuits and the Top Gear presenters using beans on toast.

In addition, Prudence has also immortalised a Dalek from Doctor Who using Spaghetti Bolognese and Have I Got News for You panellists Paul Merton and Ian Hislop – as well as London Mayor and former guest presenter Boris Johnson – from the ingredients of an Indian takeaway. The edible exhibition will be going on display next month at Virgin Media’s headquarters in Hook, Hampshire.

The pieces of art were commissioned by Virgin Media following research on the nation’s favourite TV dinners – and what TV viewers might eat whilst settling down to watch their favourite programmes. The survey, which canvassed the nation’s eating habits, shows that over a quarter of Brits (28%) eat dinner in front of the television every night. It also revealed sandwiches as the most common food eaten whilst on the sofa, followed by pizza and Spaghetti Bolognese. EastEnders, Coronation Street and Doctor Who were the most popular shows to watch with a TV dinner, with How to Look Good Naked the biggest turn-off for people to eat in front of.

Malcolm Wall, CEO of Content at Virgin Media, said: “Virgin Media customers have demonstrated a real appetite for on-demand content and we’ve been delighted by the response to the launch of BBC iPlayer on our TV platform. As BBC iPlayer becomes available through Virgin Media’s Electronic Programme Guide, we expect interest in and usage of our on-demand service to continue to grow strongly.”

Wall added, “We're proud to be able to serve up some of the best on-demand content on our customers' TV menu and just as everyone has different culinary tastes, we think it's important to offer a wide range of choice.”

The BBC iPlayer shows on Virgin Media ‘TV Dinners’ are:

‘Doctor Who’ – made from Spaghetti Bolognese and pasta shapes

‘The Weakest Link’ – teatime cakes including Battenberg cakes and biscuits

‘Top Gear’ – made from beans on toast

‘Have I Got News for You’– curry, rice and Naan bread

‘EastEnders’ – sausage, mash, chips and peas

BBC iPlayer on Virgin Media is available to its digital TV customers at no extra cost and is launching from next week through its Electronic Programme Guide (EPG) as well as currently through the red button whilst viewing a BBC channel. There are around 350 hours of content available per week - for more information, go to


Tuesday, 20 May 2008

News from Cancer Research UK

Famous female statues get their running gear on to help fight cancer

Female statues across the UK have had a temporary makeover after being dressed in running vests to celebrate Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life 2008. The historical figures, including the likes of Jane Austen and Emmeline Pankhurst, have been sporting running bibs to mark the women’s only race series which kicked off across the UK this month.

To reflect the determination and drive of the women who participate in the Race for Life events, Cancer Research UK commissioned six statues of famous historical figures to be dressed in the specially designed running vests – surprising and impressing onlookers throughout the country.

The statues were specifically chosen as women who are noteworthy for their strength, ingenuity or purpose throughout history. Statues donning the race bibs include the formidable Roman warrior Queen Boadicea, located in Cardiff and leading women’s rights activist, Emmeline Pankhurst, whose bronzed statue resides in Westminster, London. Also sporting race wear are the Messenger of Peace in Manchester, Lady Godiva in Coventry, as well as the Jane Austen figure in Bath and Pocahontas in Gravesend, Kent.

Now in its 15th year, Cancer Research UK’s Race for Life is the largest women-only fundraising series in Britain. Women are invited to walk, jog or run 5k at over 260 events across the UK this summer. The charity is hoping that 750,000 women will come together and help raise over £50 million for research into all forms of cancer.

Louise Holland, of Cancer Research UK said: “Each of the statues we selected to wear our running vests represent the importance of strength, courage and in many cases, triumph over adversity. The women taking part in this year’s Race for Life events show dedication, resolve and a desire to change lives – much like many of the historical statues that are wearing our race bibs.”

Each Race for Life event covers a distance of 5k, encouraging women of all ages and levels of fitness to participate. Women can enter Race for Life by visiting or calling 0871 641 2282.


For more press information or images please contact Laura Bryce at Frank PR on 0207693 6999 or e-mail:

Notes to Editors:

Full list of participating statues:
• Pocahontas, Gravesend, Kent
• Lady Godiva, Coventry
• Jane Austen, Bath
• Emmeline Pankhurst, Westminster, London
• Messenger of Peace, Manchester
• Queen Boadicea, Cardiff

About Cancer Research UK:
• Together with its partners and supporters, Cancer Research UK’s vision is to beat cancer
• Cancer Research UK carries out world-class research to improve understanding of the disease and find out how to prevent, diagnose and treat different kinds of cancer
• Cancer Research UK ensures that its findings are used to improve the lives of all cancer patients
• Cancer Research UK helps people to understand cancer, the progress that is being made and the choices each person can make
• Cancer Research UK works in partnership with others to achieve the greatest impact in the global fight against cancer
• For further information about Cancer Research UK’s work or to find out how to support the charity, please call 020 7009 8820 or visit

Thursday, 15 May 2008

News from Alton Towers

Gurgle if you want to go faster!
Alton Towers Resort set to develop world’s first baby rollercoaster

Alton Towers, the UK’s No 1 short break destination for families has begun generating concepts to create the world’s first ever rollercoaster for babies. Currently in early stages of development, ‘The Giant Gurgle’ will transport babies and toddlers around their very own specially-created rollercoaster ride. Each carriage is designed to give mini riders maximum support and protection as they undulate around the track.

At just 2 metres off the ground, ‘The Giant Gurgle’ will also enable parents and carers to walk around the outside of the track as children aged 6 months and above experience their first ever baby G (for gurgle!) force. Travelling at a maximum speed of 2 mph, the ride will last 67 seconds and replicate the lulling motion of a pram.

Morwenna Angove, Sales and Marketing Director for the Alton Towers Resort explains:

“As the UK’s No 1, we are constantly evaluating a whole host of ride and attraction concepts to complement the fantastic combination of experiences already available at the Alton Towers Resort. Project ‘Giant Gurgle’ is the latest concept to be considered and would fit perfectly amongst attractions already aimed at our younger guests, such as the Driving School and Heave Ho”.

Child psychologist, Dorothy Einon comments:

“Babies love to be pushed around in prams and practice moving their little legs in babywalkers. So, the invention of The Giant Gurgle will enable them to experience their very first roller coaster ride which will not only be fun, but will also help stimulate their senses and development as they move around the track.”
Alton Towers, part of the Merlin Entertainments Group, is home to the UK's best loved theme park with 2 hotels, a waterpark, a spa, an extraordinary golf course, and nineteenth century gothic towers. It is located upon 500 acres of Staffordshire countryside and offers a unique combination of rides and attractions for all ages, from soft play areas for tiny toddlers to ground-breaking, world-first adrenalin inducing rollercoaster rides.

News from Make Your Mark

When it comes to British women and enterprise - the shoe fits
Make Your Mark and join forces to recognise Britain’s best female entrepreneurs

A survey released today to launch the Girls! Make Your Mark Awards has shown that, when it comes to owning a business, British women aspire to walk in Tamara Mellon’s Jimmy Choos, running her shoe empire. However, although many are envious of Victoria Beckham’s husband, the same can’t be said of her business empire with only 2% wishing to take the helm of her venture.

The results released today mark the launch of the Girls! Make Your Mark Awards, an initiative established by Make Your Mark and, designed to celebrate Britain’s female entrepreneurs and encourage more to take the plunge. With 74% of women believing that being a female entrepreneur is a desirable career the hope is that the awards will motivate more women to follow their dreams.

Interestingly three quarters of women believe that their female attributes, including intuition and guile, would give them the edge over their male counterparts in the business arena.

A panel of prominent businesswomen including Jacqueline Gold, Head of Anne Summers, Carrie Grant, Vocal Coach to the stars, and Natasha Aitken, Editor of, will help judge five exciting award categories:
 Female Entrepreneur of the Year
 Entrepreneurs with a Conscience
 The Pioneer (for businesses less than 12 months old or an enterprising idea)
 Handbags and Gladrags
 People’s Choice (as voted for by readers)

Natasha Aitken, editor of says being the head of their own business is a growing aspiration among British women: “We receive an overwhelming response from readers when we support successful businesswomen on our site. It sparks great debate in our forums, with women talking about their experiences, dreams and fears about setting up their own ventures.”

A host of some of the most influential women in business today are also lending their support and expertise to this inspirational initiative including fashionista Savannah Miller and designer Pearl Lowe who commented:

"I think the Girls! Make Your Mark Awards will help provide a fabulous arena to showcase the brilliant efforts of female entrepreneurs in the UK today. I know from personal experience that it can be challenging running a start up business, whilst juggling other aspects of your life, this is why I feel it is important to support and help champion females who have gone it alone and are realising their dreams."

As well as giving winners the recognition and spotlight they rightly deserve there are some fantastic prizes for the successful entrants including money-can’t-buy mentoring and advice.

The awards are open to entries until 21st July and those short-listed will attend a glamorous awards ceremony in September. For more information and to enter please visit

Notes to Editors

Make Your Mark is the national campaign to unlock the UK’s enterprise potential. It aims to inspire people to have ideas and make them happen. The not-for-profit campaign is backed by an unprecedented coalition of businesses, charities, education bodies and government.

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

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