Local news

Essex-born student announced as winner of National Accident Helpline’s legal award

A student from the University of Surrey has emerged as the overall winner of Future Legal Mind 2018 – National Accident Helpline’s award to find the brightest legal talent in the country.

Gbemisola Obolo, who currently studies Law with International Relations, has won a cash prize of £5,000 plus a coveted work experience placement at a top law firm.

The 19-year old, who is originally from Harlow in Essex, could barely contain her excitement when she got the call to say that she was the winner of the sought-after award:

"It feels amazing. On hearing the news, I was surprised as I never thought such a thing could happen to me. Now, I feel a sense of pride in my work and I am just grateful.

I want to say thank you very much to National Accident Helpline. Thank you for providing a channel where students like me can showcase themselves and be recognised and rewarded for it. Thank you for boosting my confidence and enabling me to be more than just a law student but the winner of the Future Legal Mind award."

When Gbemisola isn’t studying for her degree, she works part-time in the St Elizabeth’s Centre care home, and participates in a range of choirs.  She is also a published poet.

Her entry and consequent win for Future Legal Mind has earned her a cash prize and valuable work experience at a top law firm. She said:

“I am excited about gaining practical work experience, as words can only go so far on what it takes to work in a top legal firm. I am still early on in my legal career, so having this opportunity is an excellent head start to set myself apart in a competitive industry.”

Gbemisola was chosen by a panel of industry experts, above seven other students who were also shortlisted. National Accident Helpline’s Managing Director Simon Trott said:

“Gbemisola’s essay demonstrated a comprehensive understanding of the complexities of the personal injury sector and tackled the perception that Claims Management Companies are ambulance chasing lawyers seeking to promote a compensation culture.

National Accident Helpline congratulates Gbemisola on a well-deserved win, and we wish her the best in her career aided by Future Legal Mind.”

The seven other finalists were spanned from across the UK, with notable entries from the University of Edinburgh, Durham University and the University of Oxford, who all answered the essay question:

The personal injury legal sector is frequently attacked by government, insurers and media as ambulance-chasing lawyers seeking to promote a compensation culture.  What can organisations in the personal injury legal sector do differently in order to dispel the misconceptions and bring integrity back to claiming compensation?


To find out more about Future Legal Mind visit:

Local charity garden show needs sponsorship

The third bi-annual Marks Hall Garden and Country Show is to be held on 20th to 22nd July 2018 in aid of Essex & Herts Air Ambulance, The Marks Hall Estate and the many Charites supported by Colchester Rotary Club.

In 2016 over 2000 visitors flocked to the show at the Marks Hall Gardens and Arboretum in Coggeshall, Essex CO6 1TG.

The Show will provide a weekend of fun for families with a huge variety of attractions, including, Country Pursuits, Falconry display, Vintage Classic Cars, Heavy Horses, Local brass bands, plant and gift stalls and much more. The gardens will be fully open for all to enjoy and there will be plenty of refreshments available.

This event is vital to the work these 3 organisations do in the local Community and the last 2 shows have raised £80,000 for the charities.

Essex & Herts Air Ambulance has been operating for 20 years and has attended over 21,000 missions. Undertaking an average of 4 missions per day each costing around £2500, you can see how expensive this service is to run.  Without access to National Lottery funding and with limited support from Government they continue to rely on local fund raising.

The Colchester Rotary Club provides holidays for injured soldiers and disadvantaged families, zoo and adventure trips for local disadvantaged children, hampers for local families at Xmas. In 2017 the Club was able to spend over £20000 in such support.

The Marks Hall Gardens and Arboretum is a Charitable Trust established in 1971 and receives no external funding.  The Estate combines beautiful formal lakeside gardens, a stunning Arboretum with an enviable collection of tress originating in every temperate area of the world and miles of leafy woodland walks.

All of this depends on the generosity and goodwill of local people and businesses.

A spokesman for the Show said, “We have been very grateful for the support shown by our Show Sponsors in previous years but we are now seeking Sponsors to help us continue our work in the Community. We have some excellent Sponsorship packages which ensure your brand is seen on the Showground and in our literature by thousands of people.”

For more information on sponsorship please contact: Nigel Dyson – email:

Walkers in Essex asked to unite against Parkinson’s

Essex residents are being asked to unite with thousands of people across the UK and Walk for Parkinson’s at RHS Garden Hyde Hall on Sunday 8th July.

Two people are diagnosed with the condition every hour in the UK and Walk for Parkinson’s events aim to raise over £500,000 for the charity Parkinson’s UK for research to step closer to a cure.

There are longer and shorter distances to choose from, so whether you’re up for a challenging walk or a gentle stroll, there’s something for everyone. At Hyde Hall distances include a 2-mile and 5-mile walk.

Sky Sports Presenter and Champion of Walking for Parkinson’s UK Dave Clark was diagnosed with Parkinson’s in 2011. He is a keen walker himself and is encouraging people to get involved.

He said: “We want to make 2018 our biggest year yet for the Walk for Parkinson’s series. I’d like to invite everyone, whatever their level of fitness, to take advantage of the many different types of walks, scenic routes and distances available. Exercise can be really beneficial to people living with Parkinson’s. It is as important to me as my medication in helping me take control and manage my symptoms. So please join us at Walk for Parkinson’s at Hyde Hall. Every step takes us closer to a cure and our goal of improving the lives of everyone affected by Parkinson’s.”

The registration fee is £10 for adults and £5 for under 16s. Everyone who registers will receive a free Parkinson’s UK t-shirt, fundraising pack and at the end of the walk, a finisher’s medal.

All the money raised from the event will fund research to help to find a cure and improve the lives of the 145,000 people in the UK living with Parkinson’s.

Parkinson’s UK is also looking for volunteers to help register people at the start/finish area, or to be a walk marshal at various points on the route during the day.


To find out more, or to sign up to walk or volunteer at the event, visit:, call 0207 963 3912, or email

Flawless Aesthetics now open in Woodford

Flawless Aesthetics by SB Ltd (FA), relocated to Woodford Green in February 2018. We are a skin rejuvenation and wellbeing clinic which specialises in dermal fillers, anti-wrinkle treatments, fat reduction SF Lipo, no-surgical facelift procedures using Hifu or PDO/COG threads.

All our treatments are non-surgical and minimally invasive, with little or no down-time, in addition to the aesthetic procedures we offer a wide range of treatments such as semi-permanent make-up, hair removal, IV drips for wellness and supplementation, a variety of massages and facial treatments such as broken veins. We also provide bespoke packages and finance on a number of selected treatment packages.

At FA we are all full trained at advanced level, with a collective experience of over 40 years in aesthetics and rejuvenation. Our team of doctors, specialist nurses, aestheticians and advanced beauty therapists have an amazing level of skills and knowledge, which combined with passion for their work and our technology helps clients achieve their desired goals.

We are conveniently located on the High Road with 30 minutes free parking just outside the door and easy access via public transport.

A large number of our male and female clients both young and mature, have been with us for a number of years and have now developed a relationship based on trust and friendship. We work by appointment only to minimise waiting times and we use the finest products on the market to help you achieve the longest and most satisfying results. Your safety is of paramount importance to us and we will always make sure that you do not undergo any procedures that do not benefit you, therefore we will not up sell any unnecessary treatments.

Our aim is to exceed your expectations by making sure you leave us feeling happier, relaxed and rejuvenated after your appointment with us.

455 High Road, Woodford IG8 0XE

0208 2201235,

The Green Owl is open on Broadway. Debden Broadway

The Green Owl Canteen opened this April, on the site of the old Debden post office on The Broadway. This new eatery serves a range of tempting dishes for breakfast, lunch and afternoon tea and is open every day. But what makes the Canteen different is that everything is cooked from scratch in its state-of-the-art kitchen, including its range of patisseries and sour dough pizzas, the basil and lemon mayo and the prime beef patties. Even the baked beans are cooked in a homemade tomato sauce.

This care and attention to detail is down to Jane and Marc Linch, who opened their first small café, the Green Owl Café & Deli, five years ago. With a background in fine food and hospitality, the focus was always on providing excellent fare and a warm welcome. The Canteen is much bigger - with over 80 covers it’s twice the size of the Café - and has literally given them the kitchen space to be more adventurous.

Speaking about their new venture, Jane said: “We’re passionate about food, but we also know what people like and, quite often, they like to be surprised by interesting new dishes. Together with our chef Alessandro, we’ve created a new menu which will appeal to diverse tastes, but we have brought with us our recipes for some firm family favourites.”

If you want to celebrate, there’s a cocktail menu to help you and, if you’re on a health kick, a wide range of Healthy Shakes to choose from. But you don’t have to eat in; if you’re pressed for time, you can phone ahead and the Green Owl Canteen staff will have your take-away ready. There’s also a catering service for parties and events.