Category Archives: pr

Elentone Singers Christmas Concert – 15th December – Cox Green School, Maidenhead


The Elentone Singers will be holding their Christmas concert on Thursday, 15th December, at Cox Green School, Maidenhead. The concert, which starts at 8pm, will feature a varied programme of seasonal music from around the world, traditional carols and mulled wine, and proceeds will benefit the Alexander Devine Children’s Hospice.

Choir director, Lyn Thomson, explains this year’s choice of charity saying, “We were delighted to discover that Alexander Devine Children’s Hospice, a much-needed facility for families throughout Berkshire, will be built a very short distance from our base at Cox Green School. When they heard that the charity had won planning permission for the building, choir members were keen to help out in any way they could.”

The choir welcomes members of all abilities, there are no auditions, no waiting lists and fees are just £40 per term. Lyn, who also teaches music to 0 to 11-year-olds, adds, “We’ve had people coming to us claiming to be tone deaf who were singing in tune within a short space of time. My aim is to help each one of our members to be the very best they can be – and it’s huge fun too.”

People who are interested in joining are invited to attend the concert, see what the choir is all about and then come along for a free trial session when rehearsals resume in January.

The concert will be held in the theatre of Cox Green School on Thursday, 15th December, from 8pm. Tickets are £5 on the door, or from members of the choir.

01628 622651


Social Networking Pioneer and Ecademy Founder, Penny Power, to Headline Thames Valley’s International Women’s Day Centenary Celebration

[tweetmeme source= “catherineosborn” only_single=false]PRESS RELEASE

Social Networking Pioneer and Ecademy Founder, Penny Power, to Headline Thames Valley’s International Women’s Day Centenary Celebration

Monday 7 March 2011, 18:00-20:00 HSBC, Green Park, Reading 

Success Network, in partnership with the Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce Group and HSBC, is inviting business women to attend a champagne reception on Monday 7th March 2011 at 6pm in Reading to celebrate 100 years of International Women’s Day.  The keynote speaker will be Penny Power, the inspirational author, entrepreneur and business speaker who founded Ecademy with her husband in 1998.

Fittingly, one hundred women are expected to attend this popular annual networking event, now in its sixth year and the theme for this special celebration will be networking – social networking in particular.  According to a survey carried out by last year, over 60% of women-led SMEs use no social networking whatsoever for business, revealing an area with huge potential for growth.

Ute Wieczorek-King who runs Success Network says, “Many women business owners that I talk to are aware of the benefits of social networking but are not quite sure where to start. I am, therefore, delighted to welcome social networking guru, Penny Power to our IWD centenary celebration. There is simply no one better than Penny to inspire women to join in the social media buzz that will be so beneficial to their businesses in 2011.”

In the past year, Success Network has led the way in encouraging female business owners to tap into the power of social media.  With more initiatives planned for 2011, the organisation plans to help even more Thames Valley businesswomen realise the benefits of using social networking as a tool for business growth. 

Ginette Gower, Head of Communications, Thames Valley Chamber comments; “We are delighted once again to support this inspirational business event. We look forward to welcoming ladies who would like to make connections with other like-minded businesses, as well as learning from Penny’s experiences.”

The event starts at 6pm and includes a glass of champagne and finger food. Tickets cost £25+VAT and can be booked via. or by calling 01753 870500.

The event will benefit two local women’s charities: Utilivu women’s group in Reading and The Parapet Breast Unit Charitable Trust in Windsor.


Notes to editors

About Success Network:

The Success Network is a business support community which runs training and mutual support programmes for women members across the Thames Valley. Members work in all sectors, both as business owners and as employed professionals.

About International Women’s Day:

This event has been celebrated annually for a century. The day unites thousands of women all across the world in a global celebration of the economic, political and social achievements of women. 2011 is Success Network’s sixth International Women’s Day celebration.

About Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce

Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce Group works with businesses across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Wiltshire to help them achieve their full business potential through: meeting new customers; cutting costs; developing their workforce; influencing local decision makers; and arming them with business intelligence. Membership is available to all businesses.

Maidenhead Advertiser Business Monthly, February 24th. 2011

Music Matters, it Really Does!

Maidenhead Advertiser ArticleI’m delighted that this PR was picked up by Maidenhead Advertiser, who sent a photographer and gave the event a lovely write-up.  And, as a result of the Advertiser article, BBC Berkshire will be interviewing Lyn live on 7th February!  To find out more, please check out the article on Lyn’s website

[tweetmeme source= “catherineosborn” only_single=false]Music Matters, the highly popular music class for 0-11 year olds, is celebrating its 10th birthday this week and to mark the occasion, pupils have decided to don fancy dress to raise money for Rosie’s Rainbow Fund, a local charity that provides support to sick children and their families.  The charity is particularly special to Music Matters as it counts founder Carolyn Mayling’s son amongst its attendees and another of its pupils benefited from music therapy provided by the charity when he was in intensive care as a baby.

Established in January 2001 by qualified music teacher, Lyn Thomson, Music Matters’ aim was to give as many children as possible a good start in music. Since then, hundreds of children have improved not only their musical skills but their speech and language too.

Lyn says, “As well as being a music teacher I am also a qualified teacher of English as an Additional Language and am particularly interested in the direct connection between learning music and developing language and literacy.  Research shows that children who have a good music education from a young age have a huge advantage over their peers when they start school as learning music helps all areas of development – physical, social, emotional and intellectual – and this is what motivated me to start working with very young children.”

Feedback from parents shows that Lyn has succeeded in her aim.  She recalls one 4-year-old from a dual language home who had very limited speech.  By the end of the first lesson, she was singing songs and after two terms, she was speaking confidently.   Other parents report that people are often taken aback by their children’s precocious language skills.  It’s not just the children that benefit either, parents who thought they were tone deaf have found their voices after a term or two with Lyn.

Lyn’s most recent venture was to launch the Elentone Singers, a choir for adults that meets for two hours every Thursday evening at Cox Green school.  The original singers were parents and grandparents of Music Matters pupils but the choir is now recruiting members throughout the community.  No musical experience is required to join the choir and there are no auditions or waiting lists.

To find out more, please visit, or contact Lyn on 01628 622651

Rosie’s Rainbow Fund –

Early Years Playgroup Opens in Sale

[tweetmeme source= “catherineosborn” only_single=false]Piglets is a brand new playgroup for children aged 2-5 and its doors will be open on Saturday 21st August from 10.30a.m. to 2.30p.m. for families to see what the group has to offer.
Run by experienced nursery nurse and mum-of-four, Sarah Austin, the group will be operated within the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and is approved by Ofsted.

Sarah says, “I’ve searched long and hard for the perfect venue for this playgroup and I know I’ve found it.  We have a safe and secure indoor environment for pre-schoolers and a fantastic outdoor play area.  Our goal is to provide children with a solid foundation for nursery and school and we can’t wait to get started!”

Piglets will run for ten sessions each week, 9:00 – 11:30 and 12:30 – 15:00 and lunchtime provision is offered.  There will also be a pick-up and drop-off service for children who are attending Lime Tree Primary School on a half-day basis.

[tweetmeme source= “catherineosborn” only_single=false]Parents who wish to find out more are invited to visit the playgroup at 9th Sale Scout Hut, Budworth Road, Sale, M33 2RP, on Saturday 21st August, from 10.30a.m. to 2.30p.m.  Sarah may also be contacted on 07519 974978,, or

Piglets' leaflet, artwork by

Elentone Singers – A Summer Concert of Fun and Frivolity!


A Summer Concert of Fun and Frivolity!

The Elentone Singers, Cox Green Community Choir, announces its second performance

Cox Green Community Choir, The Elentone Singers, will be holding its summer concert on 15th July, 8-10pm, at its new home, Cox Green School.

The choir, formed in October 2009, will offer a varied programme of traditional music from around the world, which will include an English mining song, North American spirituals, foreign language lullabies and there will be one huge surprise!

The concert is open to all and there is no entrance fee.  There will be a collection and raffle for the Slough branch of Women’s Aid, a charity that helps all victims of domestic violence.

People who are interested in joining for the Autumn term are invited to come along, see what the choir is about and chat to its members during the interval.  The choir is open to people of all abilities and locations, not just Cox Green, and there are no auditions or waiting lists.

Musical Director, Lyn Thomson, says, “The Elentone Singers is a relatively new choir and I’m delighted with the progress we’ve made in such a short time.  People who claimed not to be able to sing a note soon found their voices and the resulting sound is amazing.”

For further information, please call Lyn on 01628 622651 or visit


About The Elentone Singers

The Elentone Singers was founded by Maidenhead-based music teacher, Lyn Thomson, in October 2009.  The choir is named after the ancient settlement of Elentone that was located in the North Town area of Maidenhead.  In January 2010, the choir moved to its new home in Cox Green School to the west of the town. 

The ethos of the choir is that given the right encouragement, anybody can sing.  There are, therefore, no auditions or waiting lists.


Lyn Thomson     01628 622651
Rebecca Bond   01628 820069

Photographs attached, please acknowledge Ana Taylor.


Secrets of a Millionaire


Secrets of a Millionaire

Businesswomen Find Fun and Inspiration at Thames Valley’s Annual Celebration of International Women’s Day

Liz Jackson, MBE

Liz Jackson, MBE (Photo: Alison Crown)

120 Thames Valley businesswomen attended an event to celebrate International Women’s Day, “Essential Business Secrets for Success” at Reading’s Hilton Hotel on Monday 8th March.  A successful first joint venture by Success Network, Business Link and the Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce, the highlight of the evening was a keynote speech by Secret Millionaire, Liz Jackson, MBE.

Liz gave a humorous account of how she built up her marketing business from scratch at the age of 25, despite having rapidly-failing sight and no money.  A key component of her success, she told the audience, was to embrace set-backs, as these represent “the best learning curve” that a person can experience.  She went on to warn that traditional goal-setting, which focuses on achievability, can stifle potential.

Guest Diksha Chakravati, of Fixme, said, “‘Meeting so many like-minded dynamic women in business, listening to Liz Jackson and tucking into the delicious food was a truly heart-warming and inspirational experience. I’d like to thank the organisers for this splendid event and I’m looking forward to the centenary event next year!’”

Success Network founders, Ute Wieczorek-King and Mary Fraser, offered their customary blend of focused mini-workshops and speed-networking events, whilst a roulette table and more traditional raffle raised funds for children’s hospice Naomi House. Ute said “We really appreciate Business Link’s support this year and were also bowled over by the generosity of all our sponsors when donating prizes and in particular Champneys, Kinnarps and Menzies Accountants.”

Shemila Therani, representing the evening’s key sponsor, Business Link, said, “This first joint venture has proved a resounding success.  By taking part in this three-way collaboration, we were able to create something that was greater than the sum of its parts and initial feedback shows that the attendees found the evening both entertaining and inspirational.”  

Lorna Cummings, from Business Link, gave a very informative introduction to the support that the organisation offers to women in business, and other inspirational speakers included Beth Rogers, a leading sales management thinker as well as Helen Krag and Hélène Cooper.   

Ginette Gower, of Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce, said, “’The event had something for all ladies present whether they are at a career crossroads, looking to start or grow a business, or just to take some time out. Along with the other sponsors, the Chamber is committed to support women in business”



International Women’s Day:

This event has been celebrated annually for nearly a century. The day unites thousands of women all across the world in a global celebration of the economic, political and social achievements of women. 2010 is Success Network’s fifth International Women’s Day celebration.

Success Network:

The Success Network is a not-for-profit organisation which runs informal networking sessions and mutual support programmes for women members across the Thames Valley. Members work in all sectors, both as business owners and as employed professionals.

Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce:

Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce Group works with businesses across Berkshire, Buckinghamshire, Oxfordshire and Wiltshire to help them achieve their full business potential through: meeting new customers; cutting costs; developing their workforce; influencing local decision makers; and arming them with business intelligence.  Membership is available to all businesses.

Business Link:

Business Link helps entrepreneurs to start up new enterprises and maintain and grow established businesses.  This is done by ensuring that business owners and senior managers can quickly and easily locate and benefit from the broadest range of public, private and voluntary business support services.  Business Link’s information and advice services are available through the website or by phoning 0845 600 9 006.

Collaboration is the Theme for Thames Valley Businesswomen in 2010

For Immediate Release

Success Network Announcement: Collaboration is the Theme for Thames Valley Businesswomen in 2010

Berkshire-based Success Network, a business support network for women, has announced that collaboration will be its theme for 2010.  Building on several successful collaborative efforts in 2009, the group has recently linked up with Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce and Business Link to host some major events this year and to allow its members to tap into a valuable source of business support.

Success Network’s members discovered the power of collaboration recently when one of the group’s Inner Circles (peer-support business clubs), worked together to produce an e-book of success ‘recipes’ to inspire other women who are starting out in business.  The contributors chose not to profit from the book and have instead made it available to download free of charge from Success Network’s website, ensuring that the advice is available to anyone who needs it.

Explaining the announcement, Ute Wieczorek-King of Success Network says, “In 2009, many of our members discovered that collaborating even on a small scale enabled them to achieve better results for their businesses and helped them to raise their profiles at the same time.  We have decided to continue that theme this year, and linking up with Thames Valley Chamber and Business Link is an important step for us.”

The first event to benefit from the joint venture will be hosted by Business Link on 9 February in Slough, focusing on the Social Media Revolution in Business. It will be  followed by Success Network’s annual celebration of International Women’s Day on 8 March in Reading, hosted by the Thames Valley Chamber and will be a motivational business event designed to provide local businesswomen with inspiration and new connections to help their businesses flourish in 2010.


Representatives from Success Network, Thames Valley Chamber and Business Link.

L-R: Mary Fraser (Success Network), Ginette Gower (Thames Valley Chamber), Ute Wieczorek-King (Success Network), Henrietta Bailey (BusinessLink), Shemila Tharani (BusinessLink).

(Photo Alison Crown)

About Success Network:

Success Network is a friendly and welcoming community dedicated to supporting women in business, inspiring them and helping them to develop and grow the business. We offer motivational training and networking events, coaching, mentoring, eBooks, a large selection of free articles and a Success Recipe Blog. Apart from our Inner Circle Business Club – a small private membership club for women who wish to develop their business – there are no membership fees and we welcome all women who wish to be more successful in business.

Find out more at

About Inner Circle:

Running your own business can be a double-edged sword. With the freedom to be your own boss comes the responsibility for all aspects of your business and identifying the right way forward is not always easy. Inner Circle Business Clubs are small peer support groups that help business women connect with people they can trust, who are happy to share their knowledge and provide feedback, advice, or even moral support when needed. Being a member has been likened to being part of a team or having your own virtual board of directors. Inner Circle’s winning format was first introduced by Success Network in 2007.

Find out more at



Maidenhead Man in Urgent Bone Marrow Appeal

Father-of-Two Appeals to the Mauritian Community for a Donor

Maidenhead father-of-two, Chris Maury, and his family have issued an urgent appeal for a bone marrow donor after the thirty-eight-year-old software engineer was diagnosed with a difficult-to-treat form of leukaemia. His search is complicated by the fact that he needs to find somebody with a similar Anglo-Mauritian ethnic background.

Potential donors need to be aged 18-40 and have a Mauritian father of Indian origin and a European, preferably British, mother. Volunteers in the UK can apply directly to the Anthony Nolan Trust and if there is a match, Chris’s consultant will be informed. Overseas volunteers should apply to their local tissue bank or GP. Alternative methods for acquiring bone marrow mean that the process no longer needs to be invasive or painful and people should not be put off by the upper age limit either; once a person is accepted by the register, they will be eligible to donate until they are 60.

When Chris started to suffer deep muscle pains, he initially thought he’d overdone it at the gym. But when the pains got worse, he visited his GP for a blood test. Almost immediately, he was summoned to his local hospital, where he was given the news that he was suffering from Acute Lymphoblastic Leukaemia and within days, he was travelling to Oxford for intensive chemotherapy. Chris says, “When I got my diagnosis, the first emotion I felt was relief – I finally had a reason for the niggling ailments that I had been suffering, and a plan of action. However, the relief soon changed to concern for my wife and children, who were having to deal with the enormity of the situation.”

Doctors told Chris that he has a complication known as Philadelphia Chromosome Positive Leukaemia, which is resistant to most conventional forms of treatment, and his best hope now is an urgent bone marrow transplant. Straight away, the Anthony Nolan Trust, the UK-based donor register, started to search for a potential donor, but he was advised that given his ethnic background, his chances of finding a match would be significantly reduced.

After tests on close relatives drew a blank, Chris’s father, Marc, decided to launch a global search for a volunteer, a quest that took him to Mauritius while his son celebrated his 38th birthday. “I was really disappointed not to be with Chris for his birthday,” says Marc, “but if I can find him a donor, that will be the best present ever.”

Chris’s wife, Sarah, says, “It’s really difficult to watch somebody you love going through an ordeal like this. I would urge everyone to consider joining the register because even if they can’t help us, they may be able to save another family from the heartbreak that we are experiencing.”

Anthony Nolan Trust
020 7284 1234
Information for editors:
Philadelphia Chromosome Positive Leukaemia occurs when two chromosomes in the affected cells get “swapped over” and it is resistant to most conventional forms of treatment.