March Round Up

What a busy month this has been!

AT LAST, the HNT 2018 VIDEO, 2018 INTERVIEW with Terry Bennett from Abbey 104 FM,  and the amazing HNT POEM by poet, Larry Lagrue can be published LIVE!

Do see the HNT website home page to view all.

The Yeovil College media students have worked hard to get the filming all finished before the deadline, despite the hiccups and setbacks due to the two bouts of snow which meant college closure and meetings cancelled!

Larry Lagrue, has just published his first poetry book available online from Amazon   The Friday poems are full of fun and yet can also cause a lump in the throat…and more can be read each week on his website….W is for Duck

I am so grateful to him as he has spent hours writing and perfecting the HNT poem which is all about life as a child with SEN, the struggles that parents and carers face, and what HNT is trying to do to help.
The FULL poem, which Larry himself reads, can be seen on the HNT Website

Terry Bennett and I have now done 2 or 3 interviews, including my being on his famous “Folk Tales” which goes out live every Sunday morning at 11am on Abbey 104

This month I was again in the studio…this time not talking about HNT and what it does, but talking about my experiences as an SEN mother. MANY people regard me as HNT but do not know that I too have a little girl with significant learning disabilities. I often talk about my four boys, all of whom are high achievers and progress through their lives with ease. For legal reasons I cannot talk about “Y”, although her vision of the world can be seen in the chapters from “The Adventures of Y”. The stories will eventually go into a book…so watch this space!

The 2018 HNT VIDEO  has also gone LIVE. This gives a brief reminder of what has been going on so far, why, who will benefit from any fund raising, and how you can help…as well as snippets from the Interview and the Poem.

AND….lastly…my Just Giving Page  is now LIVE…and the exciting news is that I am not the only one completing a marathon this year. As I race Ebony Court [Parathlete] on June 16th in my sports wheelchair at the Sherborne Summer Festival , sons William [aged 14] and George [aged 18] will be pounding the lanes around SHERBORNE, and Peter [aged 11] will be cycling!

The boys have all set up their own Just Giving Pages …so PLEASE support them as they do me!

Huge thanks Rachel


Birthday Surprise

What a wonderful surprise to have received this on my birthday from
HNT’s poet Larry Lagrue!

Happy Birthday Rachel

“But Mummy! You’ll have
Even more wrinkles than
You have now!”, came the
Response from your darling “Y”
Not said with any malicious intent,
Just the perspective from her wonderful eyes.

Her response came after the announcement
That youR Birthday is today.
And though it may have almost
Brought you to tears,
Today tears must stay away.

For today is a celebration
Of you, and all that you are;
Not only a mother, and a fundraiser
But all the other things that you also do –
You really are a superstar.

The work that you do is awesome;
I don’t honestly know how you find the time
To do all the things that you do
And then still raise your kids –
But take a look; your kids are just fine.

They rightly do you credit,
And make you so proud, this is true.
But here’s something you might not
Have considered before:
That your kids are
Proud of you too.

So tell Yara that your wrinkles
Are laughter lines,
From good times you’ve had before.
And Each one is a fabulous memory,
And when you laugh,
You are making one more.

So I hope that a few more are created
As you laugh loud and long all today.
And I do hope that you
Truly enjoy yourself,
Have a very, very
Happy BirthdayPoet Larry Book reduced


February 2018 Update

Well…so much has been happening since Christmas it has been difficult to find time to write the blog!

Firstly, thank you everyone who has been fund raising for me! Every little helps and already the amount in the HNT account is much larger than I had expected at this stage of the year!

Who would have thought that an HNT Valentine’s bottle of Fizz [kindly donated by the HNT sponsors Porter Dodson, + Langham Winery] would have made £179 in a raffle! Amazing…and huge thanks to all who brought tickets last weekend at the BN event in Bournemouth!

Secondly…the 2018 HNT video is well underway! The Yeovil College media students have worked so hard. They have had a tough job as the video itself has meant not only filming at the college but also out and in numerous locations and involving other professionals.

They were also brave enough to come under my wing for a year’s work experience…and have somehow been able to put up with my need for perfection!!! They are ending the placement by doing a charity HNT fund raise themselves…each being given a £10 note with a task of making it grow as much as possible by the beginning of June! Already they are being competitive, getting friends on board and both wanting to win the prize for the greatest fund raiser!

The video has meant working in partnership with an amazing poet…W is for Duck. The poem that he has written for the project is hard hitting but is absolutely gets the message across. Larry has done the voice over and recites his poem on the video…please listen once the poem goes live at the end of March.

Thirdly…I have linked up with Ebony Court, a disabled Racing Wheelchair athlete. She went to the Yeovil Opportunity Group when young and it was their care and support to both her and her family that started her on the athletics path she is now following.

SO…on June 16th at the Sherborne Summer Festival, she and I are going to have a Sports Wheelchair RACE! A really tough challenge as I don’t know how to even get into my chair as yet, let alone race in it…and of course the race is not over merely 100m but over a WHOLE MARATHON! We will both need all the support we can get, so come along to the festival and cheer us on! MORE DETAILS will added to the Epic Run page as plans are finalised.

The HNT racing wheelchair has been purchased and is now here…but I need a sponsor for the chair. If you see the Sponsor HNT page you will see how to do this and what sponsorship could mean for you!

So…onwards and upwards…training with a difference starts on Monday under the strict eye of Simon Partridge [SPFit Sherborne]…and with the help and advice from Ebony Court!



2017 into 2018!

Suddenly life has become VERY busy for HNT!

1. 18th Nov

Means collecting at Glastonbury Carnival…OHH! Helpers required so phone me if you can support! I am doing the collections during the day but, if anyone can continue thro the eve and experience a GREAT carnival for FREE for such a good cause please get in touch! 07516 288571


2. 24th Nov and 25th Nov


Nearly 200 lots for auction of toys, books, games, and more from Poyntington Nursery which sadly closed this year. ALL proceeds to charity so please come along on the day.

VIEWING FRIDAY 24th 10 – noon and also on the morning of the sale!

SALE starts 12 noon prompt on 25th NOV!

More details on by mid week   Events page!


3. ITEMS needed please for….

Next tombola on DEC 2nd! PLEASE get in touch and donate ANYTHING in vgc

ALL proceeds to HNT!

Bag pack @sainsbury + tombola!!

If you cannot donate, why not come along and speak to Rachel about how YOU can support HNT and SEN kids?

sen friendth1RNU1A27

Scholarships, Essays and Interviews

A busy 2 weeks ahead with son George…who is writing final essays for his Sutton Trust Scholarship! He is hoping to study Engineering and Architecture at MIT…but also has interviews for Georgia Tech and Stamford! He sits his FINAL exams on November 3rd…so HNT will take a back seat for the next 12 days so that I can plough through his essays prior to submission, test and retest him in his subjects, and generally be the best support any mum would want to be!

BUT…Oct 20th means full on again for HNT…

Finalising the Adventures of Y, as seen at Hidden Needs Trust ready for publication.

Starting the 2nd HNT video in conjunction with Yeovil College media students

Speaking to more families of SEN children, schools and businesses…policies and procedures MUST change for the children with special educational needs!!

Preparing for the Glastonbury Carnival where HNT will be collecting in November…watch the website for details!

Meeting with Somerset Community Foundation to discuss match funding for monies raised this financial year.

Applying for MAJOR funding for HNT from resources as the Lottery, Heart’s Make Some Noise and more.

Planning with the rest of the Sherborne Summer Festival Team… yes, watch out for the 16th June 2018 when this amazing festival will happen!

AND of course picking up the gruelling training with Simon Partridge from spfit for the 2018 physical challenge for HNT which will take place IN the 2018 Sherborne Summer Festival on 16th June!

BUSY, BUSY, BUSY…but for now…back to Sutton Trust Essays!!

Ohh…and The apprentice is back on…guess who had an interview for this back at the start of the year…ME!!!!! Sadly, did not get to the last few that now grace your screens BUT I got an interview! How cool is that!!!

So…until Oct 20th….start thinking on how you can help me with HNT and raise funds!!



Holnest Country Fayre

What a wonderful start to this next year’s drive for HNT!

A whole weekend at Holnest Country Fayre with the HNT stand, drumming up support for Special Educational Needs Children and their families in Dorset and Somerset.

The whole weekend was raising £ for Future Roots I am a huge supporter of this amazing project from a professional point of view [having been a tutor, therapist and having worked for Children’s Social Care], from  Rotarian’s point of view [Sherborne Castles Rotary Club have supported Julie and James over the last year or more], and from my HNT/charity point of view…linking in with another organisation which is determined to make a difference to children and young people in the local area; and sometimes this can be really tough going when funding and other red tape gets in the way!!!

The weekend meant networking with a HUGE array of stall holders, exhibitors, local producers and chefs…all of whom had come with the intention of supporting Future Roots. The friendliness of this end of season country fayre could be felt throughout the weekend and this must have been transferred onto the students who use this amazing facility.

My 10 year old son, Peter, however, had to be the real star of HNT. Not only did he help me on both days but he also became “sous chef” to Martin Baker, Head Chef at the prestigious Stanbrook Abbey Hotel, near Worcester, when the cookery demonstrations and competitions began. Peter, complete with apron and microphone, not only prepared vegetables but also entertained the audience from the stage, telling them all about HNT and what his “mad mum” was doing for Special Educational Needs Children and their families. WELL DONE Peter!

After all this hard work of course, Peter became 10 again…scaling the cadet wall to the top on numerous occasions and loving the Dog and Duck display, the birds of prey demonstrations and eating ice cream from Ecco-Galato (Sherborne)

AND watch this space for the HNT 2018 physical challenge in the Sherborne  Summer Festival [date TBA but it is looking like June 16th!]…as connections at the Holnest Fayre have now been made and plans started! The clue is it is likely to involve something to do with the Army Cadet Force or Marines!!!

ANY stall holders who are interested in having a stand at the Summer Festival…please get in touch!!

So…massive thanks to all at Holnest Fayre…and a really special WELL DONE to Dave from DiaMonD Images who was the driving force behind the scenes in organising the event and promoting this valuable resource!


2017 – 2018 Here We Go!

Well, after a few weeks break from fundraising and organising events for HNT [due to family illness and the business of the school holidays] it is back to work with a BANG!

There are going to be many events leading up to Christmas for you all to join in…Including on Sept 23rd/24th The Holnest Country Fayre where HNT will have a stand, tombola and more. Get onto the Holnest Country Fayre website and see what is going on…plenty for ALL the family!  Holnest Country Faye

Holnest C Fayre

On September 17th I will be joining Terry Bennett LIVE on his Sunday morning show on Abbey FM with not only details of HNT and how you can help, but also with a selection of my own “desert island disks”! My son, George, who is the founder of Sherborne Student Discounts will be alongside me and so expect an hour of humour! Listen @ 107.4 FM or online  Abbey FM

Abbey FM

Last week Pete and I were able to catch up with KitzUk Sherborne who so kindly donated all my running kit for my 65mile slog back in June. {That was when the weather was SO hot…before the summer holidays which was very typical!} They now also do a large range of school clothes, shoes and sports accessories, all of which can be labelled on site. Visit their website KitzUK information and contact details or go and explore their unit at South Western Business Park Sherborne, Dorset DT9 3PS (near Sherborne Station) and chat to Fiona about your needs.


On Monday 11th September I am linking up with Deborah Croney and other County Councillors to talk over SEN provision in Dorset. I have had so much input from parents, staff, and Head Teachers re the issues that they are frequently up against…such as the large number of children requiring additional help in schools, the lack of adequate additional funding to support these children, the inability to train adequately SEN Support Staff, inability to find the extra time to support children and their families with SEN, funding being used inappropriately, “inclusion” for a child actually becoming “exclusion” and so increasing the child’s low self-esteem, bullying not being picked up…and much more! Everyone on this circle from teachers to parents and the children themselves are struggling…and this should NOT be so!

I am so pleased to be able to share this with people that possibly can help change just one of these points so that SEN children can reach their full potential, live happy and fulfilled lives and be able to work as adults to the best of their abilities alongside others.

So…a busy month ahead…and that is before the gruelling training that starts TODAY (4th Sept) for my 2018 physical sponsored challenge…a secret until the day of the Sherborne Summer Festival  Sherborne Summer Festival  when I will be doing the challenge LIVE! Watch for the date and then put it in your diary…

PLEASE keep donating and think of a way you too could fund raise for HNT…every penny counts and the more whacky the event the better as this is about children who of course all love a bit of fun!